Category Archives: Opinion

Having the need for a category to present or illustrate a broader topic or point, I found a much better word than, “uncategorized” – This word comes to us from Latin, and seems to me as the perfect name for a default category. arguendo, “For the sake of argument. Said when something is done purely in order to discuss a matter or illustrate a point.”

Fukushima

One of my major projects involves creating a web-based platform that unites us all in a quest to solve problems.  Or you might see it as software to help us accomplish goals by helping to define the topic or goal, set milestones, find others with like interests and help with resources and planning until we accomplish the goal.

In order to develop the software, we decided to find a focus point to help us better define features, benefits and an interesting user interface – given that my colleagues have a background with environmental causes and law, we choose the nuclear disaster at Fukushima, Japan and the problems with fuel rods and contaminated ground water.  Here’s a blog site from my colleague, Julian Gresser, discussing the problem: http://www.explorerswheel.com/blog/generating-solutions-fukushima

Wow – this is turning into chaos.  The problems in Japan are enormous and our hope is to unite minds from all of humanity to find new and innovative solutions, ideas and suggestions about how to handle the crisis.  From this project, we will build an amazing piece of software to help with other projects like clean-water projects, building hospitals or schools and many, many others.

But Fukushima is getting scary.  Even with no further interruption from nature, the problem is severe enough.  Now a typhoon – maybe the biggest in 10 years is about to hit the plant.  http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/10/15/us-japan-typhoon-idUSBRE99E09H20131015

If those fuel rods are exposed or the water storage tanks are damaged, God help us all.  Welcome to the 21st century disasters.

 

Why?

Quote, “The National Park Service placed cones along the highway viewing areas outside Mount Rushmore this week, barring visitors from pulling over and taking pictures of the famed monument.”

Can this report be real? In America? Our national leaders are so mean-spirited and self-indulgent they close a free roadside, non-staffed, no-cost look at one of our national monuments, just to make a point? Are you kidding me?

Then the government (us) has to pay for police or rangers to guard so people do not remove the cones. And now this becomes not only a frustrating experience for visitors, but we have to pay as well?

A friend recently suggested to me, “Be thankful you don’t get all the government you pay for!” – I think he’s right.

Congress

Why on earth do we tolerate the behavior of our Congressional “leaders?” – Both Democrats and Republicans are holding us, the American public as hostages to their inability to compromise and move forward in our national interests.  Given how I feel right now, my suggestion is to vote them all out of office.  The best thing for the nation might be term limits to stop the career politician from making a life in Washington.  They all need to come back to reality and get a job like the rest of us AND starting paying their own bills.  Especially paying for their own health care.  That would change behavior overnight.

I am in constant amazement at how ineffective our folks in Congress have become.  The house and Senate are so polarized they have lost the ability to clearly see problems and find ways to work together.

So let’s all hope, pray and contact our so called, “leaders” and let them know we are not very happy with their foolish and childish behavior and it’s really time to stop, talk, listen to us and do some real work.  The work of running our nation in times of need.

Gas Prices

How on earth will I get to go camping this year?  Being a reasonable person and somewhat concerned about the environment, I try to take the bus into work as much as possible.  And that’s just about 100% of the time.  So when it comes to commuting to work, I’m a good citizen, right?  Well, I do have – or maybe for now I should say I “used to have…” this other love during the warmer seasons – called “camping!” – And yes, like millions of other Americans, I do have a trailer which means I need a pickup and that means I need gas and now we come to the real problem.  Gas.  Actually, not really, “gas” as a product – it’s the “price” of the gas that has become the limiting factor for my upcoming camping trips over the summer.  My pickup tows a 5,000 pound trailer and does a fine job.  But it also needs gas to move forward and tends to use around 1 gallon of mid-level gas for every 10 0r 11 miles when the trailer is in tow.  Given the price of gas is around $4.39 (and of course, the additional 9/10 of a cent – stupid concept but not important for this blog) this means trouble coming very, very soon.

OK, thinking about heading to a campground – one favorite is 85 miles from my home.  A little math showing 10MPG for 85 miles each way with current gas prices comes to a staggering $74.63 just to get to and from and campground.  And that’s without taking any short side trips!  Now, because the liberal politicians in Washington state have over-spent our tax dollars on entitlement programs, I have to add on the new Washington requirement for a pass to even visit a state park for $30 (I can amortize this over many trips) plus the cost of the campground at around $27 per night.  And now what is this easy, low-cost “camping” trip going to cost?  Not even factoring in the “Discover” pass and just calling that a “summer” cost of $30 – the cost for gas and park fees for 2 nights is $128.63.  Not counting food, maybe a hot dog on the campfire, and the firewood.

I don’t know about you, but just a few years ago, I remember thinking that camping was a pretty inexpensive past-time – a nice way to get into the outdoors and enjoy some of America’s finest forests and sights.  But given the current federal administration and their insane desire to force the country into bankruptcy over an unrealistic view of energy, we are stuck.  For any of us that are getting older and thinking we’ll retire and see the country – we can kiss that idea off.  The only “country” we’ll be seeing is in our backyards or somewhere within walking distance.

It would appear that our politicians are completely out of touch with the realities of everyday life in America.  We, as Americans, love to visit our friends, family and other cities and campgrounds.  Many of us have grown up around the belief we will see the days when we can “hit the road”, leave work behind, if only for a weekend or two, and enjoy our time away from work.

But no – not going to happen until we have a significant change in leadership for this country.  Given the disregard for our wants and wishes, the current administration is plowing forward with money from some of the worst criminals on this planet (like power-hungry George Soros and other like-thinking thugs from Chicago) to reform and re-shape what used to be the greatest nation on earth.  Exactly what the president (yes, I did use lower-case as the current one deserves no better) is doing is just plain wrong, mean, disrespectful and with no regard for the public at large.  I doubt the secret service has asked him for his Shell or Chevron card to fill up AirForce One or any of the 20+ limos that take him and his equally elitist wife everywhere.

I am all for a “all we can create” energy policy but the last time I looked, we need gas for our vehicles.  And yes, we need it now.  And we have the resources to find, get, refine, distribute (well, almost distribute – we do have the Keystone pipeline issue to resolve), and use oil based products.  And we need – is to do this.  Yes, just do it.  Let the free market come up with innovation to move us into the next generation of energy.  Get the government out of the way and someone will create what we need.  It’s happened for the past 200 years and was the vision from our founders.  This entire insane and un-American policy from the current administration has to go.  And not soon enough.  We need someone in the White House with a vision and a respect for Americans.  And I hope with all my heart that the current person in that house gets to return to his thug buddies in Chicago real soon so we can get our gas prices back to where they belong and get some policies in place to allow America to do what it does best.  Innovate, live free, love family and liberty – and yes, camping.

As to the current administration – don’t let the door hit you on the way out. Good riddance.

 

State of the Union

Tonight, the President stands before Congress and and before us, the citizens of the United States of America.  As he presents, consider the following concepts as though you were in the room with those that risked their lives to create this republic.  Imagine standing next to the founders as they discussed the lines; “We hold these Truths to be self-evident” – that group of men talking and debating the concept that suggests a more natural law and moral reasoning would form the foundation from which a people choose to self-govern.  Continuing, “…that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that amoung these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.  That to secure these Rights, Governments are instituted amoung Men, deriving their just Powers from the consent of the Governed.”

From the consent of the governed – that’s us.  And the rights should be very, very limited with respect to the Federal level – states rights are another topic as are county, city, and community law, rules and regulations.

We live as a free people and our Constitution was to guard from oppressive Government – and to the point – the one we have today is just too big and over-reaching.  Someone needs to be in that office to restrain the government and put the power back to the states, and to the people.  This is starting to be upside down and we need to fix it now.

The Declaration of Independence and Constitution were to protect us and I, for one, and sick and tired of seeing our founding principles trampled by career politicians.

 

Liberty

Has this happened to you yet?  Have you picked up a book about America or read any articles, biographies or historical documents about America?  As I age, I have taken it upon myself to read more about our Constitution and the founders.

During my school years, of course we read about “civics” and studied history – or maybe a better way to describe those days is I had a history class – saying I “studied” history would be a stretch or downright lie.  But in recent times, I began to wonder about America and how we became this unique nation of freedom loving people.  Starting with the autobiography of Benjamin Franklin (fascinating, by the way and free on Amazon) – then some of the Federalist Papers – on to “1776″, then the very, hard-to-read 5 book set from John Marshall, and other works about George Washington.   I began to understand  how dangerous it was for our founders.  When they pledged, “our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor” – that was death if the British caught them.  The years around 1776 were indeed, dangerous for those seeking freedom from oppression and unfair taxation.

If you have time, I urge you to read more about American history and the original ideas to allow people to self-govern and limit the powers of the central Government.  I suggest you might come to the same conclusion as did I – freedom is unique, special, and how we were meant to live.  And I give my heartfelt thanks to those folks who gave everything they had to create and maintain this gift from God called America.  I have traveled around this planet on numerous occasions and cannot think of a finer place to enjoy life that right here in the good old U.S.A.