Sunday, November 11, 2012 7:45 PM
Okay. Sunday night. Veteran’s Day. The real date, although tomorrow is the observed holiday. That ‘eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month of 1914’ still gets me—you see, I’m reading “Fall of Giants” by Ken Follett and, while it is historical fiction, there is nothing fictional about his description of the callous decisions of so many nations’ leaders to send millions of young boys to their death. To have a fancy 11th this and 11th that—it’s just typical of the stuffed shirts and nobility of those times to try and aggrandize even the ending of the needless slaughter.
Still tens of thousands without electricity in the NYC Metro Area. Funny how it’s always the low-income neighborhoods that see this kind of neglect. Is there a rule or something? Can’t we at least hand out a bunch of those keychain flashlights that are given out at conventions, just so they can see their way up the stairs? They can’t be that expensive.
I see the news reports of General David Patraeus resigning over an affair—or is it two affairs? Two ladies having an email flame-war over him, something like that? When I first saw this story on the CNN crawl, I thought, “What the hell is the FBI doing investigating the head of the CIA?” But then I remembered a story in the NY Times from a day or two before—that Patreaus was having some trouble due to using military paradigms, but the CIA had always been a tightly knit group, leery of outsiders, used to being treated like a club more than an agency—and definitely not into military-style leadership.
So that made me wonder if the whole scandal thing was just their way of dumping their new boss. If a guy can’t hide his affairs how can he keep America’s more important secrets, eh? But I sympathize with Dave—being married and having two other women fight over you—you know that won’t end well. Still, I think the CIA has a lot of nerve copping a ‘tude—9/11, WMDs in Iraq, Arab Spring, Heavy losses in Afghanistan—will they ever warn us in advance of disasters instead of making excuses after the fact? Do spies even make sense in our present day? Surely very poor spies who do nothing useful can be considered redundant. Maybe they should start poaching personnel from the FBI.
I think a ‘sea-wall’ protecting Manhattan and environs from rising sea-levels and more powerful storms would be an excellent WPA-type project for creating jobs. Infrastructure nationwide should be considered as a part of the unemployment problem—roads, bridges, schools, whatever—and it increases the value of our assets to ‘put some work into the house’, as it were. And this time, along with a salary, we could offer workers credit towards tuitions—so they can get better jobs than pouring concrete, you know?
This is an excellent read – THANK you!
Firstly, I had no idea that back on the 11th tens of 1000s of NYC metro citizens still had no electricity. I had no idea. But also – I didn’t think NYC was a low income city. I thought it was very expensive (from what I’ve seen on TV – sorry, that’s all I’ve got to go on). But your comment about helping & $$ reminds me of the Katrina situation.
Your idea of those little keychain lights is EXCELLENT. That’s a huge idea. I wish that had been taken up.
I found this really interesting & your style of writing casual and not overly academic but still had all the facts.
Thanks for your interest.
I was unclear regarding the low-income neighborhood comment–I meant to say that within the NYC Metro Area there are several low-income neighborhoods which suffer from sub-standard emergency responses, not that the entire Metro area was a low-income neighborhood.
This is a typical mistake of mine–assuming that the reader will follow my line of thought without my having to spell it out. Too impatient to get my thoughts on paper…