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The Irony Is Rusting

By now everyone has heard that Obama is giving a speech designed for school kids, apparently to urge them to stay in school and get an education. There is no word as to whether he intends to discuss tax policy as Reagan did, or bore them to tears as GHW Bush did, but the wingnuttiest among us, led by Florida’s own, Jim Greer of the FGOP, are raising loud objections to anyone going on CSpan to tell kids to get an education.

This is humorous, but not ironic. For the irony one must journey to Katy, Texas.

The local school board, not seeing any point in getting into a political fight over a non-political event, sent out an e-mail telling parents that if they didn’t want their children listening to the speech, simply fill out a form and the district would find something else for them to do. Alas, the district mentioned, no doubt to assure people that this was not a big deal, that this was the same procedure used to excuse students from participating in the pledge of Allegiance, and hilarity ensued with parents claiming that the school system was calling parents who didn’t want their children “indoctrinated by the socialist in the White House” unpatriotic. The board issued another e-mail apologizing to anyone who took offense.

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September 5, 2009   11 Comments

Station Fire Update 9-5

FireThe fire in the Angeles National Forest has now burned over 154,655 acres [≅ 242 miles²] and at least 76 homes, three commercial buildings and 27 outbuildings. The cost estimate is >$37 million. It is 49% contained.

The firefighters are setting backfires to eliminate fuel sources and widening fire lanes to stop the spread to surrounding communities. Most of the active fire activity is in the San Gabriel Wilderness.

The smoke from the Station Fire has been spread all the way East to the Mississippi River, as can be seen on the Smoke Map below.

The Station Fire was started by an arsonist near mile marker 29 on the Angeles Crest Highway (SR 2) about one mile above Angeles Crest Fire Station near a Forest Ranger station [the source of the name] around 3:30pm [PDT] Wednesday August 26, 2009.

The state is offering a $100,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the fire.

Two Los Angeles County firefighters have died in a motor vehicle accident escaping a burnover. In addition there have been 3 civilians and 10 firefighters reported injured.

Currently there are 121 hand crews, 419 engines, 43 water tenders, 66 dozers, 11 air tankers, 19 helicopters, and 5,244 total personnel assigned to the fire.

The aircraft now include the 747 Supertanker [20,000 gallons], Tanker 910 [DC-10 12,000 gallons], Mars Hawaii Superscooper [7,200 gallons], and two Canadair 415 water scoopers [1,600 gallons] from the Province of Quebec.

Links: InciWeb, LA Times, KTLA, and Pasadena Star-News

Maps: LA Times fire map, the Enplan Wildfire Viewer, and the Weather Underground Smoke Map.

Webcams: Tujunga and Altadena

[For more information go to the CATEGORIES drop-down box below the CALENDAR and select “Fires” for all of the posts related to wildfires on this site.]

September 5, 2009   Comments Off on Station Fire Update 9-5