Government Fight Against Post 9/11 Safety Standards.

September 11, 2008

I recently wrote about building code revision being presently considered. Perhaps the most important issues relate to an extensive study done by the National Institute of Standards and Technology following 9/11. This led to specific recommendations about how sky scrapers could be made safer in the event of catastrophes, which in turn led to a battle between public health officials and real estate executives.

The issues are discussed in this New York Times article but suffice it to say that the conclusions of the several year long study make sense. The General Services Administration oversees the operation of federal government buildings. It is in effect a landlord.

On this anniversary of 9/11 it is odd to think that the government is actively fighting against public health officials and the results of the study that it funded. It is trying to get safety standards rejected that would save lives in the event of another nature or man-made catastrophe. For me this makes the lofty sounding speeches of government officials seem a little hollow.

The October Surprise?

September 11, 2008

In July President Bush authorized assaults into Pakistan without the need for further approval.  This was done secretly here, although to the Pakistanis I’m sure that there was no secret about it.   I may have gotten paranoid but it seems to me that this last year has seen many attempts at military provocation in the Mideast on our part.  First there was the “discovery” of weapons supplied by Iran to Iraqi forces.  This was exposed as at the very least highly questionable.

Then there was the “attack” by a pleasure craft on an American war ship in the Persian Gulf.  Then it was determined that the tape of communications from the pleasure craft had been doctored and that the ship was probably within Iran’s waters but not threatened.

There has been a great deal of publicity about the nuclear threat presented by Iran that is rebutted by our own most recent National Intelligence Estimate.

The most recent dust up between Russia and Georgia was apparently provoked by the U.S. ‘s encouragement of Georgia to attack.

It is generally viewed that an international military incident before the election would favor McCain.  With Dick Cheney as our envoy to the Mideast right now please forgive me if I worry about political motivation for stirring up an incident.  This attitude is caused in substantial part by the concealed motivation for invading Iraq and the trumped up justifications.

Obama Takes the Gloves Off

September 11, 2008

The gloves are coming off. With McCain having launched what Joe Klein of Time Magazine calls “one of the sleaziest ads . . . ever seen in presidential politics

Obama has reconsidered his campaign-long urging of supporters not to put money into 527 groups. He is withdrawing that plea and advising folks that he has done that.

If ever there was a person vulnerable to attack ads, McCain certainly is. There is already a wealth of material on You Tube.

With the media not doing even a vaguely credible job debunking the misinformation that is already being thrown out in these ads, Obama is not going to turn the other cheek by holding back his supporters.

The media plays such an important role in the dissemination of information, the abnegation of its most critical function, seems to create a Hobbsian jungle of attacks and disinformation campaigns