I named this blog “The View From Space” because I always look for the big picture. This often comes when you take a step back to see how the details fit together. I write about both current events and history because the two are inextricably linked. Everything in the news today was influenced by the past. Seeing the link between the past and present is crucial to understanding the big picture.

Originally from Kansas, I spent 21 years in the Air Force with stints in France, South Korea, Iraq, Pakistan and several stateside assignments before retiring to Pensacola. I have a B.A. in history and I’m all but thesis for a M.A. in history from the U. of West Florida. I also taught 8th grade world history and made an unsuccessful campaign for county commissioner in 2018.

Republican duplicity on display for all to see

Author created Image

It was all too predictable. From the moment I saw the headline “3200 of Dr. Fauci’s emails released” I knew this was coming. Right-wing conspiracy theorists were going to pore through the emails looking for anything they could take out of context and make bold claims of proof of Fauci’s crimes. With so much material to work with, how could they not find something they could contort to fit their narrative. But, is there anything to these claims? …

How Great Britain learned, then forgot the lessons of the American Revolution

Adapted from 19th century political cartoon — Wiki Commons

Why should a nation have colonies? That’s really the fundamental question at the heart of this article. In the age of 18th-century enlightenment, this was one of the serious philosophical questions being debated in England. The prevailing thought of the day was of a zero-sum gain with your rivals. Colonial actions either made you stronger and richer or they made your enemies stronger and richer. As a result, it was just assumed that the purpose of a colony was to increase the wealth of the mother country at the expense of other countries. …

And why didn’t the Trump tax cuts lead to inflation?

Image by author, “Christ the Redeemer” image from Flickr, Creative Commons license

I suspect that when most people think of the word “economics,” images of spreadsheets and mathematical formulas dance in their head. In reality, if you go to your local university, economics isn’t in the math department or even the business school. It’s in the social studies department, alongside philosophy, sociology, and history. Economics is the study of how people, governments, and businesses interact with wealth. In other words, it’s the study of human behavior. So thinking about it in those terms it’s not surprising that Brazil was able to solve their hyperinflation with psychology.

Now You See It, Now You Don’t

Money is basically a mass delusion…

Finding political solutions for America’s unrepresented people

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons

August 21st 1959 is a special date in American history. That was the last time the United States added a new state. Now over 60 years ago, this is the longest we’ve ever gone without adding a new state to the union. That streak could come to an end though after the House of Representatives passed legislation to make the District of Columbia the 51st state. The governance of the D.C. has been murky since the district was first formed. However this issue is larger than just the District of Columbia.

In addition to D.C., the United States also has…

We need to fight fear with facts to put this pandemic bed

Image by author

After a year of right-wing disinformation about the COVID-19 virus, I suppose no one should be too surprised it has seamlessly transitioned to spreading false information about its vaccine. Memes are flooding social media with dire warnings claiming the vaccines are experimental and dangerous. The objective evidence overwhelmingly shows this to be nonsense. Yet, for someone whose worldview is shaped by what they see on Facebook, it’s not hard to see how they might struggle to discern the truth.

In the past the anti-vaxxer movement has been split pretty evenly between Republicans and Democrats. This has changed with the COVID…

What the textbooks get wrong about the French and Indian War

Indians Ambush British at Battle of the Monongahela — Wiki Commons

Over the course of England’s millennium of existence, they’ve gone from a collection of loosely aligned kingdoms to the largest empire the world has ever seen, followed by its slow decline. It goes without saying over the course of that thousand years the British have seen numerous victories and defeats. However, the victory that cemented their role as the preeminent power in the world was their triumph over France in the Seven Years War (1756–1763).

As a result of the peace negotiations with France and Spain, England gained control of French Canada and Spanish Florida. They also expanded their colonial…

Once again the Republicans leave a budget mess for the Democrats to clean up

Image by author

Like the return of the swallows to Capistrano, we can always count on Republicans to once again become deficit hawks once they’re out of power. Of course they’d like you to forget they doubled the deficit even before the pandemic. Even worse, they did it during an economic expansion when paying down the debt from the “Great Recession” should have been the priority. Instead, they made rewarding their billionaire campaign donors priority number one. That reward came in the form of a reduction in taxes on corporations and the top 1% of earners, which drove the deficit through the roof.

The Deficit

A fresh perspective on the early days of the Trump presidency

Photo: National Park Service

Having just lived through the whirlwind of scandal and corruption of the Trump administration, I think you couldn’t help but become numb to it after a while. However, early in his presidency it seemed unimaginable that the continual sinking to new lows could continue at that pace. I’m writing this because there was so much scandal in the Trump administration that much of it avoided scrutiny because of the continual deluge of outrage. The term outrage fatigue predated the Trump administration, but seemed custom-designed to describe it. Trump packed more scandal into his first two weeks than most presidents achieve…

The Late Bronze Age Collapse

The Hanging Gardens of Babylon, courtesy The British Museum

People are starving. Drought and natural disasters have played havoc across the lands. The mightiest governments on Earth are falling and international trade has collapsed. Invasions by mysterious people from over land and from the sea have destroyed cities. Literacy has drastically fallen, and even routine records are rarely kept anymore. Thousands of years of the advancement of human civilization wiped out in a single lifetime.

Sounds like the plot line from the latest John Carpenter movie, but could it actually happen? Well, it already did. And no, we’re not talking about the fall of the Roman Empire and the…

Scott Trotter

Retired Air Force, failed politician, one-time history teacher and now blogger. See all of my writing at www.viewfrom.space

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