By DR. LARRY MOSES
No one asked me but… I am not sure if the comments that follow fall in the category of irony, “a state of affairs or an event that seems deliberately contrary to what one expects and is often amusing as a result;” a dichotomy, “a division or contrast between two things that are or are represented as being opposed or entirely different;” or with hypocrisy, “the practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behavior does not conform.” The things discussed below may not fit into any of these categories. It might be just a strange alignment of the stars.
We live in a country where people like Madonna and Michael Moore, who have little to offer society, have a combined worth of over $600 million dollars and still believe the country has failed them.
We are living in a country where the same individuals who wonder why millions of Americans feel the need to own guns for self protection find it socially acceptable for millions of others to loot stores, burn cars, throw Molotov cocktails, shoot police, and destroy private property.
One of the greatest examples of irony, dichotomy, and hypocrisy is the results of the environmental hazards created by the protesters of the Dakota Access Pipeline. The protester’s main issue was the environmental impact of the line. No matter that the company followed all governmental environmental requirements they demanded and used only private land for the pipeline, the protesters were sure the world would come to an end if the pipeline was completed.
While the nearest the pipeline comes to the Standing Rock Indian Reservation is over a half mile, the environmental protesters are sure that the line will be a threat to ancient Indian burial grounds and the reservation’s water supply. Since the pipeline is up stream from the reservation, there may well be a concern for water contamination. However, environmental impact studies indicate there is little or no danger of this happening.
Thousands of protesters set up camp on federal land and refused to leave when instructed to do so. The demonstrations turned violent when the police and federal agents confronted the demonstrators. They succeeded in stopping the pipeline when President Obama, as President Obama often did in the face of legal or illegal opposition, folded like a cheap suit.
Mother nature did what the United States Government could not do. With temperatures dropping below the zero mark, “the summer soldier and the sunshine patriot” left the camp. However, these environmental enthusiasts left a toxic environmental mess behind. It has been estimated that it will take over 200 dump trucks to remove the waste and make the area environmentally safe again. If this effort is not done by the spring melt, these self proclaimed protectors will have destroyed the very resources they pledged to defend. I don’t know if this is irony or a dichotomy, or either, but it is hypocrisy.
This is basically the same group that champions the persecution of ranchers who would legally use federal lands under the Taylor grazing act in southern Nevada. I would speculate that 300 head of cattle on 300,000 acres will do less damage to the environment than thousands of environmentalists leaving trash and human waste on lands to be washed into the tributaries of Missouri River that pass through the Standing Rock Indian Reservation.
One must wonder how many of these destroyers of the ecology of South Dakota are being held in solitary confinement without bail while they await trial for their defiance of local and federal enforcement officials.
No one asked me but… I have been on vacation for the last five weeks. It is really hard to tell when you are on vacation when you are retired, but I have declared it a five week vacation, so I guess I have been on vacation.
When my working friends tell me how glad they are that it is Friday and they have Saturday to look forward to, I enjoy telling them every day is Saturday when you are retired.
One of the hazards of being old is that it is hard to tell when the weekend is here or when a vacation is in progress.
As a thirty year educator, I never had a vacation. I was laid off for two weeks over Christmas and New Years, for a week during spring break, and for three months each summer. Some people have the mistaken opinion that teachers are paid for the summer and over the holidays. Teachers are migrant workers who happen to remain in the same local. Like grape pickers, teachers only get paid when they are picking the “grapes”. Teachers are paid for 184 days, those summer days, winter break, and spring break when kids are not in school are days that teachers are unemployed.
I started this vacation with a two week trip to Texas. We now have friends, escaping the snows of northern Utah, visiting with us. We are trying to convince them to become snowbirds to our community. Since we are on vacation, we have taken two day trips and I can highly recommend both of them to you.
We went to the China Ranch Date Farm outside Death Valley and it was great adventure. When I heard we were going to a date farm I got excited. I thought we might be going to see a movie, maybe a dinner or even possibly see a cow, horse or at least a pig. I was disappointed to find out it was a beautiful date farm, a place where they grow dates and specialize in date shakes. I hate dates.
The closest town, using the term town loosley, Tecopa, looks like the set for The Walking Dead. It is a spooky looking place whose most famous citizen was Charles Manson. It looks like he could still live there.
We also took a day trip to Lake Havasu City to see the London Bridge. I have heard of con artists who sell the Brooklyn Bridge, but sure enough, some rich guy bought the London Bridge. He had it disassembled and shipped to America. It would have been cheaper to buy a Lego kit. The London Bridge now spans the Colorado River.
The trip was great. We saw the bridge and had the best hamburger I have had in years. Get the hamburger at the bridge, but forget the date shake at the farm.
Thought of the week…There are three things in the world that deserve no mercy; hypocrisy, fraud, and tyranny.
-Frederick William Robertson