Sunday, November 27, 2011

One Second After, by William R. Forstchen

I just finished reading an incredibly depressing novel about western North Carolina in the post apocalypse world. In this world an EMP (electromagnetic pulse) released from a high altitude nuclear detonation destroys all our computer controlled machinery and infrastructure. To summarize: society breaks down, people turn into beasts (except the protagonist) and most everyone dies. The really depressing thing is that the danger of an EMP is not just hypothetical. Evidently it's a real possibility. We really do need to invest in a modern, safer, energy grid. We need a system in which every household can generate a minimal amount of electricity to keep functional in case of strikes against our grid. We need a system that is diversified, and efficient, and localized as well as centralized. It's creepy to realize how dependent we are on modern technology, and how vulnerable our technology really is.

All hail Grover Norquist - the Plutocrat

Grover Norquist was on the Sunday morning talk show this a.m. He evidently makes his living as an "issues management strategist"
That must be one of those jobs where you draw enormous amounts of money for doing nothing useful or productive except feathering your own nest.
 He was born the son of a rich man (VP at Polaroid) he went to the finest schools and evidently has more money than God, and by God he intends to keep every penny of it.
Somehow this person, never elected to any public office, not accountable to the electorate in any way, controls our government. Almost every single Republican in office has signed his pledge to never increase taxes in any circumstances. As justification for this stance he said something to the effect that taxes are a way of taking money from the people and giving it to the king. Well, true enough if you go back in time 200 years or so. But the constitution was written to ensure we would have no kings, and that government is supposed to be "of the people, by the people, for the people."  Our progressive tax code takes more money from the rich and redistributes it into infrastructure that  benefits EVERY body. Or it is supposed to. See, the founders knew that concentration of wealth  ( was a real threat to our republic and various schemes to equalize wealth were proposed, including the genesis of the estate tax described in Agrarian Justice (Thomas Paine).
I guess we can kiss our glory days goodbye, the plutocracy is winning.