The coming flood(s)


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❝ Mr. Remus controls an extraordinary machine — the dams built decades ago to tame a river system that drains parts of 10 states and two Canadian provinces. But it was designed for a different era, a time before climate change and the extreme weather it can bring.

❝ “It’s human nature to think we are masters of our environment, the lords of creation,” said Mr. Remus, who works for the United States Army Corps of Engineers. But there are limits, he said. And the storm last week that caused him so much trouble was beyond what his network of dams can control.

“It was not designed to handle this,” he said.

❝ His decisions affect the lives of countless communities and ecosystems — the cities, factories and power plants that draw water from the river; the endangered species that nest on its sandbars; the farmers who cultivate its floodplains.

Often, their interests conflict. “You’re not going to make them happy,” he said, “but you can provide them with an explanation…”

❝ Mr. Remus’s stewardship of the river is guided by a 432-page document, the Master Manual, which lays out the eight congressionally authorized purposes he must balance. They are flood control, river navigation, hydroelectric power, irrigation, water supply, water quality, recreation (such as fishing or boating), and the preservation of endangered species…

One problem with that: The Master Manual does not explicitly tell Mr. Remus which is more important. Thus the eight purposes exist in a near constant state of tension.

❝ “You can’t say that you serve all of them equally,” Mr. Remus said. The word he clings to is “balance.” But when extreme flooding looms, he said, “the balance goes away.”

Then, all that matters is flood control.

A truly interesting read. Unfortunately. For we as a nation face governance by a Congress mostly populated with cowards and an executive branch led by a greedy fool. A criminal idiot!

Please read the article.

Most Americans Want to Pick Our President by Popular Vote

❝ There has long been support for using the popular vote over the Electoral College, but this recent poll marks its highest level of support in recent years with two-thirds who said the US should use the popular vote and the other third who believe in the Electoral College…

❝ Changing the US system from the Electoral College to popular wouldn’t be easy for those who are in favor of it.

A number of states have signed onto something different, the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, by which states would essentially agree to use the popular vote. It’ll take effect when states totaling 270 electoral votes sign on. But it would certainly face court challenges and most of the states that have signed on tilt toward Democrats. Republicans have won the White House twice since 2000 because of the existence of the Electoral College. So don’t look for a change anytime soon.

Some folks think it’s funny – watching Republicans weasel their way around the issue. It’s sad, in fact contemptible in my opinion. Party loyalty has nothing principled to bear on opposition to small-D democratic principles. That goal goes back centuries before the founding of these United States. Unfortunately, hypocrisy goes back further.

Pentagon + White House = Ignore Law, Add $97.9 Billion to Budget

❝ US defence officials previously feared that rising interest rates and growing federal debt would push the government’s net interest costs so high that they would squeeze out funding available for personnel, training, equipment, modernisation, maintenance, and more. Interest rates are now higher and the debt is now larger, but Pentagon budget officials are no longer worrying about either…

❝ The national defence budget – as well as the ‘domestic’ budget – is legally capped by the 2011 Budget Control Act. However, the White House’s Office of Management and Budget instructed the Pentagon to use the uncapped Overseas Contingency Operations account to bypass the legislated limits, which were meant to lower discretionary spending and begin lowering the US public debt. Pentagon officials said about USD97.9 billion was shifted into the unlimited OCO account.

So far.

With the Fake President in office, who cares about budgets, the rule of law or how big a bill you drop on American taxpayers?