Saturday, 19 June 2010

We Are Sorry

There's an interesting story over at Pajamas Media...over the various ways that we've apologized in the past eighteen months:

1. There's the "we-are-sorry" speech for America's general feeling acting "alone" is ok...rather than being nice and do things in a multi-cultural sort of way.

2. Then there was the "we-are-sorry" speech To Europe for just being lousy Americans and never understanding their situation in the world. Naturally...Normandy was never mentioned and American men buried in France can't be rationally explained in any "we-are-sorry" speech.

3. Then there was the "we-are-sorry" speech Turkey where we explained that we simply misunderstood Islam. It was pretty neat for about a month or two. For some reason....that speech has been forgotten now....almost completely.

4. Then came the "we-are-sorry" speech to Libya for comments that we might have made but were made in error. The Libyans were just happy that someone wanted to be nice to them....and everyone shared some cups of goat-milk afterwards.

5. Then came the "we-are-sorry" speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos....where we screwed up in the big economic stumble around the world. We didn't really go into details here...because frankly...we still don't know how those stupid bankers lost all that money.

6. Then came the "we-are-sorry" speech to Japan....where we nuked them to end World War II, and it just wasn't the right way to end a war. We would have preferred to fight man-to-man all the way into the heart of Japan and three or four million Japanese folks instead.

7. Then came the "we-are-sorry" speech to Russia and we just wanted them to like us like they did in the old days...although we couldn't really remember when they ever liked us.

8. Then came the "we-are-sorry" speech to China....where we kinda wanted to mention to everyone in China that Arizona's new law was pitiful and we were sorry for it. A bunch of Chinese guys wondered where the hell Arizona was....and why one state held this much power in making a entire country apologize.

It is a great article, and as they point out.....we still have dozens of folks we need to repeat the "we-are-sorry" speech to.

A guy can say sorry about two or three times....to mean it.....but after that, there's no real feelings. And the idiots who constantly demand apologies.....tend not to accept any after the 3rd one....but they still let you know their feelings are hurt anyway.

Eventually, we'll end up with a "we-are-sorry" speech for George Bush and then we'll know we are in serious trouble.

Arizona versus The US

The attorney general has taken the position now of taking Arizona to court....to stop their immigration law from taking effect.

I'm guessing that Mr Holder will ask for the law to be temporary halted by the court.....with Arizona probably asking for immediate court action instead, and launch right into the case. This is probably not what the administration wants.....instead trying to stop the law for six months before the case comes up into court.

The judge? He just might say no temporary halt and allow the case to proceed immediately into court.

What happens if Eric Holder and the Administration lose? I'm suspecting this massive moment of frustration occurring....then trying to take it onto the Supreme Court. This part of the case would take an entire year to finish up.

As for the Supreme Court? With the current make-up.....this law will likely stay in effect, with the conclusion around the end of 2011....just in time for the 2012 primary season to start. Eric Holder will be long gone by this point......and it'll be a curious moment for the administration to explain their next step....an attempt to push immigration reform via congress in 2012.....to fix the Arizona problem.

In the end....it'll continue on.....like a comedy of sort.

Where I Grew Up

I found a blog today which dwelt with my home town and where I grew up. It was a visit and commentary over what is left there.

I've been back to Bama around fifty times over the years. There are subtle changes. Nothing has stayed the same as far as I'm concerned.

I tend to think and dwell over a place that was amusing in nature to me as a kid.

It was a dry county but no one really really believed in this "dry" trick.

It was a place where people would screw with hornet's nests, and get stung thirty times. Yet, it made you a legend in some strange way.

It was a place where folks would experiment with tools, steel, and farm equipment....and sometimes make things that that ought to earn a Nobel Prize.

It was a place where county fairs made your eyes water-up with tears over food that was loaded with grease and sugar.

It was a place where locals marveled over your travels to Nashville or Atlanta....which seemed a million miles away.

It was a place where an inch of snow took your breath away.

It was a place where you had three real channels of TV, and PBS....and you were entirely happy. You listened at night to a AM station in St Louis....and that was your connection to the "big world".

It was a place which probably meant something.

So a thousand miles away I stand today.....and remember it.

My Saturday

I had to work today. A rare thing. I have this vaulted area in the Pentagon.....right below a parking lot....which leaks every time it rains. This has become a major issue....so the Pentagon maintenance guys finally agreed to major effort on locating the leak and fixing it.

So I arrived at 6:30 and we began this fire hose trick. We sprayed, and sprayed, and sprayed, and sprayed, and sprayed. We went to every possible corner of the parking lot area....and then the side of the building, and then everywhere else. It started with a 5x5 ft area, and by the end...we'd covered probably two acres completely with a tremendous amount of water.

Nothing. No leak.

I would imagine that we sprayed between 15k and 18k gallons of water this morning via the fire hose.

By 11, we gave up.

It's supposed to be a thunderstorm on Sunday....and we'll probably get the leak then....which makes no sense.

Your Money

It's barely mentioned in the news....I saw it on Fox News and one newspaper yesterday....but the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP)....is basically broke.

This program has been around for about thirty years and was supposed to be a government vehicle that would help in flood-prone areas.

To be honest...up until Hurricanes Katrina/Rita....it stay in the profit level and had sufficient money cover the average floods. Those two hurricanes....broke the bank. Right now...they are $19 billion in the hole. The current premium level isn't working....and you can only envision this massive government "donation" of $20 billion to stabilize the fund.

Congressional involvement yet? No.

There's this approaching trigger of hurricane season...and they actually say several might be serious this year. The President will have to act by the end of the year to cover this program.

What I could never understand....was why folks would buy property in areas where floods were prone or hurricanes were possible. I'd like to see a law that says no one can build within a quarter mile of any beach area along the Gulf coast.

I was visiting Bama a couple of years ago and my dad & brother took me over to a area in the local town where a couple of houses had been recently been put up. They are within 300 feet of the local creek. About every thirty years....there is this massive flooding which brings the creek up a good ten feet. It's all flat in this new housing development. I was kinda amazed...it was the worst possible place to build a new house....yet the buyer thought the view of the creek was a big plus. I'd guess they bought insurance just to be safe.

Prepare yourself to hear about the program and the necessity to just "give" twenty billion dollars over to it....free of charge....from your pocket. You knew better than to live in a flood-prone area...but you will donate your taxes to the guys who felt it was a great deal. Something ain't right about this.....you just have that feeling.