Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Bits and Pieces - June 21, 2011

It's hard to be cheerful these days. The Republicans have abdicated any pretense of being a responsible political party and want to destroy the country in order to get elected. I think that they would change that last infinitive to "to save it," but that gets harder and harder to believe.

Balloon Juice front-pagers keep using the metaphor of the circus clown car for the Republican presidential field, and it's all too appropriate. Jon Huntsman, who is an exception in appearing not to be crazy, announced his candidacy to an audience of 100, 60 of which were news people.

I'm tired of the lies that some are purveying about Fukushima in the service of destroying nuclear power as a source of electricity. I think that there are legitimate concerns about nuclear power and that they can be raised without the lies.

Both of those have to do with the death of responsible discussion, which is even more depressing.

Plus we have a forest fire just north of town, so that whichever way the wind blows, we get smoke, either from that fire or the Arizona fires. For the last several days, the seven-day weather outlook in our local newspaper has been giving us the "jam yesterday, jam tomorrow, but never jam today" routine: sunny weather is predicted until the last day of the seven, which has clouds.

I thought about writing a post trying to figure out what the Republicans want for the country's future. I even wrote a bit of it. But it's not worth finishing. I thought about writing a post on the difference between wishful thinking and actually figuring out what our future energy supply might be, for instance. Because you can't just shut down some large fraction of the energy supply and have life continue as usual. You've got to replace it with something.

So here's a little bit of good news: Most of the workers (3514 out of 3639) at Fukushima have been given whole-body scans. If that means what I understand by a whole-body scan, the worker has counters placed around his body and lies quietly for a half-hour. Apparently none have been found to have ingested significant amounts of radionuclides.

I suppose another piece of good news is that the world didn't end during the Berlin Crisis in 1961. Nor the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962. So maybe we will even survive the Republican clown car and threat to end the financial world as we know it.

Plus it appears that the Iranian blogger who thought out the day after Iran's nuclear test was just making a funny.

Update: A curve-billed thrasher was having a great time digging in the mulch I laid down the other day. They're great birds - like to run like roadrunners, but smaller. Somehow they rather consistently elude the birdcam. Maybe I need to spend more time on stuff like that.

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