Time for Thorns

An independent view on life.

Posts Tagged ‘government

VA outreach…

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I am so accustomed to writing about cheating bureaucrats and uncaring doctors at the Veterans Administration that this story  is an absolute joy to post.   Veterans seldom get a fair deal in this world,  but they are driven to serve.   They get scorn and denigration in most progressive bastions and real support in the South and West, partly because many vets come from those regions.

Every generation of my family has seen military service.   A number of my friends are vets.   Until the COVID madness I tried to visit those in a nearby VA hospital who had no family or friends nearby.  Now I have to settle for visits by mail with a picture of my feral cat,  or the young fox who lives in the woods,  or the mischief-making juvenile opossum,  or the yearling raccoon bandit.  The staffers are kind about reading the letters to those whose eyesight has failed,  for which I thank them.

Consider this a plea to support your First Responders, law enforcement and truckers everywhere.  Pester your governors to keep the state rest stops open for the truckers.  If you have any eateries nearby that will accept call-in orders and run it out to truckers who pull through their parking lots,  pay for a couple.   If you support these groups,  you’ll be supporting a lot of vets,  and helping fill the gap left by those who won’t.

Written by timeforthorns

April 18, 2020 at 12:55 pm

The real problem…

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According to Gallup polling,  27% of us say government is America’s most important problem.   What rock are the rest of us sleeping under?   Review  the chart  to see what the rankings were over the last 19 years,  then go educate your family and friends.   Wake up,  America!

 

 

Written by timeforthorns

January 3, 2020 at 1:26 pm

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Dangerous dams…

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Yes, there are  many dams  in poor conditions,  as they have been for a long time.   How odd that AP had no interest in them until after Trump became President.    The AP examined data on dams in 44 states and Puerto Rico,  noting that the other states cited exemptions from public records requests,  or claimed no ability or authority to assess dams.   The scary thing is that you cannot accurately assess a bridge’s condition simply by its appearance.   Some modern bridges are poorly designed or constructed and have hidden deterioration.    Rust is a great destroyer of metal,  and water makes it even worse.   A fresh coat of paint will hide the problem but it allows further damage to occur,  unseen and therefore more dangerous.

There is a more than century old wooden bridge not far from my property.   It crosses a creek in the woods to reach an old cemetery which has apparently devolved to the state, since no adjacent land owner will claim the boggy square mile which contains the graves and the bridge.   That is a blatant and generally successful attempt to avoid responsibility for either feature.  Yet the bridge supports my big dually truck.   A friend and I replaced the side rails some years ago,  and someone recently added a row of of small oak trees to the understructure to strengthen support.  That is merely rural folks doing as they always have — fixing what needed to be fixed.   We do the same thing with fences and gates if we have the necessary materials to hand,  just as we herd escaped livestock back into the proper pasturage.

We can get together and do that with small,  privately owned dams,  but it is mostly individual states which own dams.  Government at no level is your friend and neighbor.   It does not exist to serve you or protect you.   It is a soulless bureaucracy designed to increase its power and footprint and cover its own ass.   Your ass matters only when you try to make the workers responsible for actually doing their assigned jobs.  Most states have a list of infrastructure which needs to be repaired/rebuilt/replaced.   None of them are happy to provide it to you,  but most can be made to do so.  Do your part.

 

 

Written by timeforthorns

November 13, 2019 at 1:33 pm

The Hillyer Plan…

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Quin Hillyer has some  interesting ideas on how to save Social Security and Medicare.  I look forward to reading his further columns on the subject.  I would first pass legislation allowing government agencies to talk to each other for the purpose of establishing who gets benefits and who should get them.

Written by timeforthorns

April 27, 2019 at 2:39 pm

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Incompetence rewarded…

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Government is the only employer where incompetence and malfeasance doesn’t get you fired.  You can be the most awful S.O.B in Hollywood,  but as long as you produce success,  few people care.   Government makes no such demands.   Dr. Brenda Snipes should have been in jail years ago for previous crimes instead of remaining free to try to screw with another election.  She certainly should  not be  getting such a grand pension in her retirement .               .

Written by timeforthorns

November 30, 2018 at 5:30 pm

Cal fires…

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The fires are truly devastating,  and yes,  they are worse because of decades of incredibly stupid forest mismanagement by the State of California,  but notice that only one of the heroes  highlighted here  was sent by the government.

 

Written by timeforthorns

November 24, 2018 at 2:08 pm

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What is milk?

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The reason  this question  has arisen is that there are dozens of different food items called “milk” which are made from soybeans or almonds or other things and contain no dairy whatsoever.   If this sounds utterly ridiculous,  consider that most children have no clue where food come from,  public education doesn’t teach them anything beyond meat-is-bad,  and few of them have ever seen a working farm or a garden.  They know so little of science and have scant training in logic and common sense that they are unable to figure out that milk by customary definition comes from mammals,  not plants and nuts.

 

 

Written by timeforthorns

April 30, 2018 at 2:50 pm

Vanilla failure…

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If you bake you already know that vanilla  beans cost  almost as much as gold does now,  so you’re using a lot less of them now than you did a few years ago.   The price is due to a vanilla crop failure in Madagascar,  where 80% of the world’s supply comes from.   Then the island was hit by Cyclone Enawo in March of 2017,  which destroyed many of the vanilla orchids which produce the seed pods,  and this was followed by a major drought.

Because the crop is now so valuable,  it’s a major target of thieves,  and the unstable government will do nothing,  which forces producers to pick too  early,  resulting in lowered quality.   If the producers don’t get their act together,  the use of synthetic vanilla may kill off the natural flavoring.

 

 

Written by timeforthorns

April 21, 2018 at 2:59 pm

Super-group forming…

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I appreciate the courage  and tenacity of whistleblowers,  but I am especially in awe of those former Justice Department,  FBI,  and intelligence community officials who  mean to expose  the illegality and shady tactics.

Many years ago I lived in D.C. for a couple of years.   A relative who worked on the Hill helped me get a close up view of the sausage being made and it wa not a pretty sight.   I’m sure it’s much,  much worse now,  and there are few people with the guts to turn on the lights so the rest of us can see the cockroaches scurrying away.  When I was in D.C. I made friends with a group of people investigating the many tunnels in the area.  I learned a tremendous amount about the structures there,  and nearly as much about people.   I can tell you that the Deep State does exist,  and it is very dangerous,  even to the average citizen.  Every member of this supergroups is placing themselves and their families in jeopardy.  I hope they learned enough in the former jobs to protect themselves.

 

 

Written by timeforthorns

March 25, 2018 at 2:39 pm

Pirro interview…

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This past weekend Judge Jeanine Pirro interviewed Rep. Chris Stewart,  a member of the House Permanent Select Committee.   He was exquisitely careful about what he said and how he said it,  but if you have been paying attention for the past few weeks to the evidence of government rot,  you can do a bit of reading between the lines:  someone high up is cooperating.

That someone is likely Bill Priestap,  FBI Asst. Director in charge of Counterintelligence,  whose name has been curiously absent from everything which has been in the news.   His boss, Andrew McCabe,  has been caught.   His subordinate, Peter Strzok,  has most certainly been caught.   And former FBI Director Comey previously pushed him in front of the bus by trying to make him the grand fall guy during a Congressional hearing.   So Priestap is either going to meekly be the fall guy for the entire set of projects,  or he recognized that bus and is cooperating with the investigators.

Here are  some of  those who have actually colluded with Russians.   And here is  a list of some of those who  have left,  been fired or been demoted from the DOJ-FBI since the election.

 

Written by timeforthorns

February 12, 2018 at 3:56 pm