11 thoughts on “Thoughts On Mayor Pete”

  1. Mayor Howdy-Doodie sure likes dressing up in mans clothes – like his gamboling in A-stan (WAY inside the wire) with an M4, but no battle rattle, ammo or helmet

    1. My understanding that way-inside-the-wire was still in harms way to people whe were let inside the wire.

      Along those lines, there was an incident when a large number of CIA personnel perished at the hands of someone let inside the wire. Besides the risk of letting a “friendly” inside the wire who was really an “unfriendly”, or maybe a “friendly” that the enemy “got to” by threatening his family, there is also a thing about not standing close together.

      OK, this is my pet peave when I see students at the U in military uniform standing (or doing a run) in close formation.

      Train as you intend to fight, fight as you train, so there is no fine reason for our ROTC personnel to be standing so close to each other. Yes, back in the day of Sharpe’s Rifles and the Peninular Campaign, you trained formations because that concentrated firepower.

      Today, when our soldiers, airmen, Marines and sailers are equiped with accurate, select-fire arms, they really, really need to train in formations with considerable separation. The enemy has ready access to explosives, so the spacing should be at least the blast radius of the munitions used by the enemy.

  2. A thought that no one has picked up on is Secretary Defer to the NTSB to Determine the Cause was awfully quick to blame the derailment on Trump Administration policy on a mandate for improved freight train brakes.

    1. The Secretary of Transportation was immediately blaming the Trump Administration for thwarting implementation of electrically contolled pneumatic (ECP) brakes on trains carrying “hazmat.” These faster-acting brakes are already on passenger trains, but their implementation on freight trains would cost enormous amounts of money given the large number of freight cars “in the fleet.”

      The big part of the problem is that freight railroading is large based on assembling trains from isolated freight cars, some owned by the railroads, some owned by shippers and some owned by companies that operate pools of freight cars but do not own or operate the tracks (such as GATX, UTLX or other designations with “X” at the end). The operating methods used by the railroads results in very low levels of time “on the road” compared to truck freight. The railroad system relies on freight cars being dirt simple and not having accessories such as ECP brakes, that not only cost money to install but may also cost money to keep in working order. Furthermore, every freight car in a train may need to have the ECP feature for the fast-acting braking feature to operate.

      Some weeks later, the Secretary of Transportation answered that the reason he did not visit the site of the disaster was that he shouldn’t second-guess the NTSB’s investigation of the cause.

      Well, the Secretary has already second-guessed the NTSB — that “train has already left the station”, although the media hasn’t either picked up on this or does not care to pick up on this.

    2. Do you think that the Editorial Board of Model Railroader Magazine was a link in the chain leading to this accident?

      There is a community of people who are simply interested in or fascinated by railroad trains. Such people go by names such as “railfans”, “train nuts” and “foamers” (as in persons who foam-at-the-mouth because of their maniacal obsession with trains), and many such people are interested in real trains as well as model trains.

      The Kalmbach Publishing Company, publisher of Trains Magazine (covering real railroads) and Model Railroader (model trains) operates the trains.com Web site, where train and model train enthusiasts can post and reply to discussion topics (free but requires registration).

      I posted to a thread on the Trains Forum on that site (about real trains) that had a discussion of “trains dispatcher” computer games. Being a train dispatcher in real life is likely a hard-enough-job, but I guess enthusiasts want a computer-game version.

      People around Rand’s fine Web site know that I like to post “dad jokes”, and the “dad joke” I posted on the Trains Forum was to suggest the need for a “Secretary of Transportation” computer game, where the player had to decide between visiting the West Coast ports to see first hand the backup of freight and breakdown of supply chains or between taking family leave to bond with a newborn, in order to highlight the Administration’s (then) Build Back Better legislation to make family leave available to more workers.

      Honest, my dad-joke post was at that level — no mention of political parties or assigning blame for the supply chain breakdown or the Secretary being gay, which the Secretary has talked about – a lot.

      An editor at Model Railroad who drew Moderation duty blew a fuse, saying that he removed a post for being in blatant violation of the terms-of-service of “no politics” and that he would have had a talking to with the offending party giving s warning before being banned but the site’s messaging system was offline.

      Now mind you, many commenters on the Trains Forum are “union guys” either working for or retired from real railroads who bring their political slant to the Forum, but it isn’t violating the terms-of-service by talking politics to criticize an action of the Trump Administration, but it is politics if you comment to disagree, don’t ya know.

      Trains Forum goes up against the edge of politics to discuss issues in the railroad and broader transportation industries that need to be aired out and are not publically discussed just about anywhere else. I am sure there are threads going right now about the East Palestine disaster and whether the problem was Precision Scheduled Railroading cutting corners with inadequate car inspection and too-great train lengths, and I sympathize with the union guys because sometimes The Railroad is Big Bad Management without the interests of their workers or the public they serve being considered.

      I am somewhat remotely curious whether Model Railroader dude thought that I was engaged in partisan promotion of the Biden Administration’s Build Back Better to even suggest that the Secretary using Family Leave was in furtherance of a policy aim or whether I was engaged in very dry, oblique satire of the Biden Administration or whether the man was having a bad day and just blew a fuse at a customer of Kalmbach’s publications and Web services? Yes, the Forum is free, but anything free on the Web means you are the product.

  3. So it took three weeks for him to show up? Sounds like he’s not that interested in a presidential run, if he’s passing up media opportunities like that. Never let a crisis go to waste, right?

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