Monday, August 29, 2016

Trump's Plan for Russia

I have discovered Donald Trump's true motivation for seeking the presidency. He wants to take care of his pal, Vladimir Putin.

It's no secret Trump owes millions to Russian companies and oligarchs. His former campaign manager, Paul Manafort, made millions from the Russian government. Trump has spoken admiringly of Putin on more than one occasion. He even invited Russian hackers to infiltrate U.S. computers in an effort to uncover some of Hillary Clinton's supposedly lost emails. Two of his three wives (Ivana and Melania) are of slavic extraction and it's rumored number two, Marla Maples, likes borscht.

But what could Trump do for his bra Vlad as president? It's not exactly like the U.S. and Russia can hold hands underneath the diplomatic negotiating table when they get together.

Perhaps the most straightforward gesture would be to sell Alaska back to Putin and his oligarch chums. Adjusted for inflation, the break even price would be about $110 million but a president who wrote a book on the art of the deal likely would do much better.

Selling Alaska back to the Russians would have benefits beyond just the price. Alaska currently receives about $1.50 in federal money for every dollar it sends to Washington so savings would accrue as soon as contracts are signed. Russian vodka would cost less because importers would be hauling the stuff from distilleries in Juneau rather than Minsk.

Culturally, Americans and Canadians could more easily gain international travel experience. Absent two colleagues. U.S. senators could stretch out a bit more when debating and voting. And, to be blunt, Alaska's 710,000 residents would hardly be missed in a nation of 350 million.

Of course there would be drawbacks. Already outrageous prices for Bering Sea salmon and crab probably would jump. Any number of preppers and dog sled racers would flood into the Lower 48 once it became clear Alaska would be changing hands. Easing that burden is the fact Wyoming, Idaho and Montana have plenty of room.

In all, I see no real reasons for President The Donald not to sit down with President Putin right after the inauguration over a couple of drinks to start hammering out an agreement. After all, they are already buds.

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