Monday, March 3, 2008

Monday Thoughts

Ok, the storms are still here in paradise, with intermittent periods, albeit too short, of sun and warm. But it is paradise and it is still winter, and why we have water for trees and the green in the trees throughout the year.

Anyway, the news. First and most importantly, listen to the story on the cost of the war in Iraq on Fresh Air. This war, conservatively estimated, will cost us $3,000,000,000. Yes, 3 Trillion dollars. The interviewer talks with the authors of the book "The 3 Trillion Dollar War" and their analysis is really frightening for future generations. And ole George will be retired and living well on the public dole.

The Department of Defense has hidden the real costs of the war in a complex accounting system that has failed every audit and especially relating actual costs of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The DOD pushes other costs to other agencies, such as veterans care and benefits, or to other program in DOD, like, equipment repairs and replacements. And DOD isn't providing true data and information about the death and injuries.

Listening to the interview really makes me madder at Congress, but more so with the DOD and the Vice President and President for pushing us into a senseless war. In the end they ask the basic question, what could we have done with the $3 Trillion instead of throwing it down a rathole. The only industry that has gained by the money is the military-industrial complex, and the rest of us are paying the bills.

Why isn't this being discussed in the campaign, the real costs of his needless war? Why are we so enthralled in fighting an almost imaginary enemy - remember the total number of Al Qaeda fighters in the world is less than a small town against the world premier military - and as an imaginary war - on terrorism. Remember we've been attacked by them several times before 9/11 and we didn't react with such hatred toward a nation and a people that had nothing to do with 9/11.

Remember the man we're searching for is Osama bin Laden and Al Qaeda, which wasn't in Iraq before our invasion and occupation - we created the need and we helped fund and supply it with the money we gave Iraq's government ($12 Billion unaccounted) and with the arms with provided their military and police forces (200,000 weapons and small arms missing). Al Qaeda is just 5% of the fighting in Iraq, which wasn't there before 9/11, and we created the opportunity for the other 95% of the insurgents and intra-sect fighting.

Ok, I'm angry, but then why isn't the rest of the country? Personally I think history will not the Bush administration as the beginning of the end of the power of the US and the war in Iraq the chief cause of our decline in international power and stature. China will emerge as the new global power but with their own problems and their own demise, and Russia will reemerge as a global power, althought smaller from the many new independent nations.

And the European Union will also emerge to balance the threesome with their own ideas and agenda. And history will show our own ignorance and arrogance was the cause of our decline.

Ok, enuf there. Onward.

I like this one. The judge who the ordered the shutdown of the Website publishing sensitive and confidential documentsl, Wikileaks, reversed his decision as it was discovered his order didn't really do anything. The Website has a non-US mirror site (a duplicate Website outside the US which is outside US laws and courts). Ah, the technology is faster than the laws and our stupid Congress hasn't caught up with the freedom people have now with the Internet and global village.

Damn, just gotta love free speech, embarrassing as it is for those who want to control and/or steal it.

Did you know the power outage in Florida last week was caused by one technician working on a local power station? A single individual brought down a significant part of a power grid for a city. Wow is an understatement. Talk about sending an advertisement to terrorists. Take notes. It's called the domino effect, bring down one local power station and you just might cause a snowball throughout the network.

I used to work with satellite data collection system, and we always focused on the single points of failure, to find ways to reduce these. In power grids, however, it's likely there are so many single points of failure and so many ways to cause their failure, it's hard to eliminate all of them. And in the end, it always gets back to one thing, human beings, and down to one thing, trust.

I'll bet that technician never makes that mistake again?

Well, that's it for Sunday and Monday thoughts. I'm off for awhile. Parting jesture? How about John Travolta's home in Florida. He lives on a different plane than we do, literally and figuratively. And you think your neighbors car is loud? Try a commercial jet.

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