Natural disasters, remote-control wars, public transit to a car show…

April 25, 2015

BLOGGER’S NOTE: (4-27-15) The news from Nepal gets worse by the hour with the death toll from the quake and aftershocks there at 3,800 and counting as I update this. I’m not going to keep updating here but I felt if I leave this post up I should at least explain that in the first paragraph here I say I essentially skipped over the news here on first reading the first day, and then of course felt guilty. And as the reality of the tragedy there sinks in I feel a sense of helplessness and realize Mother Nature is in control at all times. I am glad the United States is sending aid. I’m part (small part) of the U.S., so I guess in my small way I am helping…


Not much time to blog today — I have my real job to attend to, but I just saw the headline and read the first several paragraphs about an earthquake in Nepal that has killed some 700 people (UPDATE: Now¬†on Sunday the count is more than 2,200). I skipped over the story at first, and felt kind of guilty about that. I mean it seems terrible natural disasters are always happening in those far-off places. Of course we have our own here too.

I also have only been skimming the stories about our drone strikes in far-off places — you know where we go after terrorists and in the process kill innocent civilians — but not to worry, that’s over there (I’m being sarcastic). In the latest one we killed our own people who were¬†hostages (and now to clarify my original post: one American and one Italian).

In war, terrible things happen — there is collateral damage as they say. But why are we in this constant state of war? And can we now go anywhere in the world and just off people because, you know, ever since George W. Bush initiated the war on terror we are at war everywhere and all the time it seems? There seems to be an open question as to the legality of all of this.

Ironically, Barack Obama originally campaigned as a kind of peace candidate and now he has W beat out as far as waging war all over the place. Interestingly neither one of these guys actually served in the military (not that such is a requirement for the civilian commander-in-chief of the armed forces, nor should it be I guess). Yeah I know, W was in the Air National Guard, was it? But reportedly he failed to show up most of the time.

And this is kind of chilling: I was listening to some kind of discussion on the radio and this tidbit was offered. In the future our military will not be using manned fighter jets or bombers — it appears in the future (and not too distant) it will be basically all remote control (drones and remote-controlled fighter jets).

We could fight anywhere and anytime from the comfort of an air-conditioned room in Nevada.

And now totally unrelated to all of that there is this:

Where I live we have this yearly 1950s/60s car show — it’s going on right now. They have a parade and various events around town I guess. I did watch the parade once a few years ago. I was able to walk to it, being as it was just down the street. But parking has been a problem, especially at the final event I think. I have recalled seeing cars parked up and down the freeway ramps and of course police out directing traffic. Well I am not at all involved in any of it this year, but I noticed on the web that spectators are being urged to leave their personal vehicles at home and take local transit. Now that is ironic, the car culture being urged to park their cars and take the bus. This is not the urban Bay Area (we’re four hours from it), this is not public transit country, even though we have it, such as it is. This is big-pickup country. So is this a new trend? I don’t know.

If I had the time and interest I could simply walk down to that car show. Lucky me. Actually I did one year (not the parade I attended, but the final show). I walked some distance and when I got there they wanted money so I walked back. I mean I used to sit on my front porch as a kid in a valley town across the street from the local high school and watched the real authentic American Graffiti show as it happened. Been there, done that.

And I have to get ready for work, which today, unless something unexpected happens, and we hope that is not the case, I will spend 99 percent of my time sitting on my posterior and holding a steering wheel, and maybe listening to Spanish on the radio or one of my Spanish language CDs — trying to learn that lingo better since it is so useful out in the trucking world, and in Spain where I travelled last year. And it’s just fun.

And for you English-only people, hey I’m with you — as far as official language in the good old US of A, English should be it. But that does not mean one cannot or should not expand his or her horizons.

Gotta go….