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2007 August 04 — Why Now?
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Fortunately, Britain Knows He’s An Idiot

Via Ellroon, Attaturk reports on the Shrubbery’s gift to Gordon Brown.

First, no one is interested in a leather jacket with a fur collar in Maryland in July.

Second, Gordon Brown strikes me at the type of person who thinks “casual Friday” means wearing a striped button-down shirt with a suit and tie, rather than all white.

Third, when the recipient’s predecessor was openly called “the Right Honourable member from Crawford, Texas,” a jacket featuring the personal badge of the President of the United States, displays a level of ignorance normally associated with diapers and pabulum.

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August 4, 2007   5 Comments

No One Could Have Imagined…

The collapse of the bridge came as a complete surprise; no one thought there was a problem, right? Well, not exactly true:

Steve M. at No More Mister Nice Blog notes the Putting People First program proposed by candidate and Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton in June of 1992 that proposed spending $20 billion per year for 4 years to rehabilitate the crumbling US infrastructure, but the deficits run up by Reagan and Bush policies of the previous 12 years, caused Congress to ignore it.

Fallenmonk found a listing of the American Society of Civil Engineers that notes that the infrastructure Doesn’t Last Forever. There is a lot of maintenance that has been deferred to the point that maintenance must give way to replacement.

As for the specific bridge, Rook of Rook’s Rant notes that the Mn/DOT Opted Against Repairs to a bridge they knew had problems.

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August 4, 2007   Comments Off on No One Could Have Imagined…

Semper Paratus

Coast Guard

Scout at First Draft notes that it’s the 217th Birthday of the US Coast Guard, one of the few components of the DHS that knows what it’s doing and continues to do it.

August 4, 2007   2 Comments

Not Again

The farmers in Britain are facing another crisis as foot-and-mouth disease has been discovered on a farm in southeast England. They have barely recovered from mad cow disease, and now the quarantines are going up over foot-and-mouth.

I was flying to Britain on a semi-regular basis on missions that either started or ended in Omaha, Nebraska in an earlier outbreak on the 1960s. The disinfectant baths that you had to walk through at both sites destroyed a lot of boots and socks. You had to walk through them as you got off the aircraft. Then they set off disinfectant bombs inside the aircraft, and you had to wait to unload your gear and clothing. People thought we worked in a hospital because we smelled of the bug spray for a week.

Unlike the US, most British farms are still family owned operations, and this can be devastating on top of the floods and other problems. For their sake, I hope they caught it early and it will be eliminated quickly.

August 4, 2007   Comments Off on Not Again

Disaster Tourist

Showing absolutely no regard for the fact that his carnival disrupts the lives of people who have experienced a major trauma, the Shrubbery brought the Clueless Twit Flying Circus to Minneapolis and said:

“Our message to the Twin Cities is we want to get this bridge rebuilt as quick as possible,” Bush said after visiting with rescue workers and people who watched the bridge crumble. “We understand that this is a main artery of life here.”

He pledged his support to cut through the paperwork and make Congress do its job.

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August 4, 2007   7 Comments