Scots Reject Independence From Britain in Historic Vote –

It might still be a huge win for Scotland.. England seems in shock… and it might adjust some balances of power and economics within the UK..
And with limited knowledge.. it seemed way too reckless to leave the UK…
The margins on the vote were bigger than expected as well.. at the moment 55.4% vs. 44.6%

EDINBURGH — Voters in Scotland rejected independence from Britain in a referendum that had threatened to break up their 307-year union, according to an official count on Friday from almost all voting areas.

Alex Salmond, the leader of the Scottish National Party and first minister of Scotland, who led the campaign for secession, conceded defeat in an address to cheering supporters. “I accept the verdict of the people,” he said. “And I call on all the people of Scotland to accept the democratic verdict of the people of Scotland.”

The vote was a decisive 55 percent against independence to 45 percent in favor.
Mr. Salmond stressed that, even though the anti-independence campaign had prevailed, some 1.6 million Scottish residents had voted to end the union, providing what he termed a “substantial” bloc of support to press for new powers promised by political leaders in London.

The global oil market was spooked by ISIS’ initial advance

As usual.. the oil thing is a major force in world events.. also in regard to ISIS.. and why they get so much attention..
Their killings in the Mid-east are just an excuse for intervention…

And Iraq still has the 5th biggest oil reserves in the world.. the markets are diving…

Iraq is home to the fifth-largest oil deposits in the world, and currently produces about 4 percent of global oil supply. So far, the ISIS conflict has yet to disrupt the big oil-producing areas in northeast and southeast Iraq. But nonetheless, oil markets are a little concrned.

As Brad Plumer points out, the Brent crude oil price — a good metric for global prices — hit the highest levels they had seen since September 2013 in June 2014, when ISIS took Mosul and the current crisis really took off. But since then, the price has regularly declined, indicating a distinct decline in ISIS panic.

(..) Interestingly, the fighting did spread to Kurdistan in August, but oil markets didn’t panic, suggesting that they never really believed ISIS would threaten the major oil-producing parts of the region. ISIS has since been pushed back from some of those gains, but depending on how the conflict goes and where in Iraq it spreads to, its effect on global oil prices could change dramatically.


Battle for the Senate is a Toss Up

It still seems too close to call – but as they talked about on Meet the Press yesterday.. Hillary and other Democrats would love to run against a fully GOP controlled, but still dysfunctional and gridlocked Congress in 2016..

Just as some prominent election prognosticators seem ready to give Republicans the Senate, two forecasting models show the battle is essentially a toss up.

The Upshot now gives Republicans a 52% chance of winning control of the upper chamber, while Election Lab gives the GOP a 50% chance. The Votemaster also has the race as a toss up.

For comparison, FiveThirtyEight gives Republicans a 58% chance of taking the Senate.


MTP take two

Great show the second week as well!

Chuck’s building a great vibe around the show and having on interesting guests. WH Chief of Staff, James Baker, Bernie Sanders – all talking crisp and interestingly this week.

So with this – Sunday politics is getting a lot better again!

ISIS Video Shows Execution of British Aid Worker –

First one from Europe.. and there are four more in line..


The video ends with the black-clad executioner, who was speaking in English with what sounded like a British accent, identifying their next victim as Alan Henning, another British citizen. SITE Intelligence, which tracks jihadist groups, said the executioner appeared to be the same man who killed the American hostages.

(..) The group is currently holding Mr. Henning and another British citizen, as well as two other American aid workers. Their families have asked the news media not to disclose their names, after ISIS warned that the hostages would die if relatives made their identities public.

How the Ukraine Crisis Ends, by Henry A. Kissinger

This is from back in March.. and a reminder that things have already gone worse than many envisioned just half a year ago..
And Kissinger’s thoughts about mounting tensions and producing another Cold War seem clear..

Public discussion on Ukraine is all about confrontation. But do we know where we are going? In my life, I have seen four wars begun with great enthusiasm and public support, all of which we did not know how to end and from three of which we withdrew unilaterally. The test of policy is how it ends, not how it begins.

Far too often the Ukrainian issue is posed as a showdown: whether Ukraine joins the East or the West. But if Ukraine is to survive and thrive, it must not be either side’s outpost against the other — it should function as a bridge between them.

Russia must accept that to try to force Ukraine into a satellite status, and thereby move Russia’s borders again, would doom Moscow to repeat its history of self-fulfilling cycles of reciprocal pressures with Europe and the United States.

The West must understand that, to Russia, Ukraine can never be just a foreign country. Russian history began in what was called Kievan-Rus. The Russian religion spread from there. Ukraine has been part of Russia for centuries, and their histories were intertwined before then. Some of the most important battles for Russian freedom, starting with the Battle of Poltava in 1709 , were fought on Ukrainian soil. The Black Sea Fleet — Russia’s means of projecting power in the Mediterranean — is based by long-term lease in Sevastopol, in Crimea. Even such famed dissidents as Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn and Joseph Brodsky insisted that Ukraine was an integral part of Russian history and, indeed, of Russia.

(..) Putin should come to realize that, whatever his grievances, a policy of military impositions would produce another Cold War. For its part, the United States needs to avoid treating Russia as an aberrant to be patiently taught rules of conduct established by Washington. Putin is a serious strategist — on the premises of Russian history. Understanding U.S. values and psychology are not his strong suits. Nor has understanding Russian history and psychology been a strong point of U.S. policymakers.