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Los Angeles International Airport dates, like Dodger Stadium and much else in Southern California, to the early 1960s. It was a pretty cool airport in 1962. Lately …

A few months ago, LAX decided to keep Uber and Lyft and the like from driving up to the terminals. Now you are supposed to take a shuttle bus to a parking lot, called LAXit, to get your ride. That sounds pretty simple, right? Well, for various reasons, it seems to take only slightly less time than Brexit itself.

And then last night, December 21st, one of the busiest travel days of the year:

Nobody was hurt, evidently, but two shuttle buses in the LAXit parking lot were completely gutted by fire and a third badly damaged.

At this rate, when they finally finish the High Speed Rail in 2059, the first train will crash into the Golden Gate Bridge and sink it.

By the way, you may recall me boring you over the last decade+ with progress reports on the giant trench in the street near my house as the LA Department of Water & Power installed a new water main to replace the century old one built by William Mulholland in 1914 (see Chinatown for a fictionalized version) using mules and men with shovels. During the 7 years and 11 months from October 2008 to September 2016 that there was a 20 foot deep trench down the middle of the street, I managed not to drive into it.

Tonight I noticed that the LADWP is still working in a trench on the same street at Magnolia Blvd. (see Paul Thomas Anderson’s movie) about a mile or two away, a mere 11 years and 2 months after they started.

 
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  1. Arson? Sabotage?

    • Replies: @Barnard
    @iffen

    You could just say diversity and leave it at that.

    , @Cucksworth
    @iffen

    Third world/low IQ immigration.

    , @Jim Don Bob
    @iffen

    The buses I've been on lately didn't look very flammable.

    'Mr Bond, they have a saying in Chicago: 'Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time it's enemy action'.'

    , @SunBakedSuburb
    @iffen

    "Arson? Sabotage?"

    Both. Governor Newsom is an agent of Chaos. He is also a vampire.

    , @Pop Warner
    @iffen

    Operator error, ese

    , @Known Fact
    @iffen

    Tesla makes buses now?

  2. Tonight I noticed that the LADWP is still working in a trench on the same street at Magnolia Blvd. (see Paul Thomas Anderson’s movie) about a mile or two away, a mere 11 years and 2 months after they started.

    Bad Sneakers

    I can see the ladies talking
    How the times are getting hard
    And that fearsome excavation
    On Magnolia Boulevard

    You fellah, you tearin’ up the street
    You wear that white tuxedo
    How you gonna beat the heat
    Do you take me for a fool
    Do you think that I don’t see
    That ditch out in the valley
    That they’re digging just for me

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    @MEH 0910

    Steely Dan is up-to-date again

  3. “built by William Mulholland in 1914 (see Chinatown for a fictionalized version) using mules and men with shovels. ”

    I am too lazy to search for pics of California, DuckDuckGo returned a page about water projects in NY state as a search result. A few men with shovels but no mules.

    1906-1917: Building New York’s water supply
    https://mashable.com/2016/05/07/building-new-york-water-supply/

    Steam excavators were a mid 1800s type device.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steam_shovel

    Were the men low paid immigrants taking jobs away from real Americans?

    The William Mulholland immigrant experience in brief:

    William Mulholland was born in Belfast, County of Antrim, Ireland … educated at O’Connell School by the Christian Brothers… beaten by his father for receiving bad marks in school … off to sea. At 15, … British Merchant Navy… After nearly losing a leg in a logging accident … 1876 stowed away on a ship in New York bound for California … discovered in Panama … forced to leave the ship … Walked over 47 miles through jungle … arrived in Los Angeles in 1877.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Mulholland#Early_life

    I think the Erie Canal 1817-1829 was built by men with shovels and mules.

    • Replies: @Jack D
    @George

    Before the 1930s, most power equipment on a construction site would be steam powered (and cable operated) and often temporary rails would be laid for it to run on. In effect these things were steam locomotives with power accessories and the technology was a spin off from railroad development (and itself useful for building new railroads. Railroads were the driving force of the 19th century economy the way automobiles were the drivers of the 20th.

    Gradually, the rails were replaced by caterpillar tracks, the steam engine with a diesel and the cable operate winches with hydraulics. As the internal combustion diesel engines developed for road use, the technology spun back into railroads and excavators and supplanted steam. Steam engines required a lot of maintenance and hand labor - feed them with coal and water, empty the ashes, etc.

  4. Remember this when people ask why we just don’t bury all electric lines.

  5. Given the same rules, regulations and mind set of today I doubt the Golden Gate Bridge could have even been built. If somehow, approval had been obtained it wouldn’t have been completed until sometime in the Eisenhower Administration.

    • Replies: @Clifford Brown
    @unit472

    Counterpoint: The Eastern section of the Bay Bridge replacement took about ten years to complete and is actually a rare example of an improvement in infrastructure. In fairness, the original Bay Bridge was kind of homely (reminded me of New Jersey) so it was not that difficult to improve upon.

    It's an amazing bridge. Even the artsy fartsy lighting scheme is inspiring.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sn1YgTPE9Dg

    , @Brad Anbro
    @unit472

    There WERE regulations that were in effect when the Golden Gate bridge was being built. But
    they were not "government" regulations; they were the regulations imposed on ALL of the workers by the general contractor! If a worker did not want to abide by these regulations, he did not have a job. It was as simple as that. I believe that during the entire project, there was only ONE fatality.

    There was a documentary on awhile ago about the construction of the Golden Gate bridge and all of these points were mentioned. It was a very good documentary.

  6. Yup, it’s not just CA. My own little MD town has been resurfacing the same two mile stretch of road for four years.
    “What do you do for work Daddy?”
    “I work on Main Street”

    • LOL: jim jones
  7. Do Steve’s neighbors know how un-woke he is?

    There should be a witness-protection program for people like us. Instead there’s something like the opposite.

  8. Off this Topic, but
    very much On regular iSteve Topics:

    USA Today launches “in depth” (but not too much depth) report on home”owners” who sold their homes to banks in reverse mortgages who are now discovering—or their heirs are discovering—that they no longer own what they sold.

    Of course, those banks followed the government’s and media’s demand that they increase lending to the melanin-enriched, but now it turns out that lending to the melanin-enriched was actually “predatory lending”, so the banks will have to forgive the loans, give back the property and make up the loss by taking more money from less melanin-enriched sources.

    • Agree: Liza
    • Replies: @Bill H
    @Almost Missouri

    That's how reverse mortgages work, and the deal is spelled out before you sign the papers. The bank gives you money (you didn't mention that part), and then keeps giving you money (you didn't mention that part either), and then when you die the bank gets to sell your house and pocket the portion of the proceeds that represents the amount of money they gave you plus interest.

    If there is money left over from the sale, your heirs get it, but the basic part of the deal is that you have to repay what the bank gave you by selling the house. That was in the papers you signed.

    Replies: @International Jew, @MBlanc46

    , @Redneck farmer
    @Almost Missouri

    Will banks be able to ask, "English, motherf***er, do you understand it", someday soon?

    Replies: @RadicalCenter

    , @Almost Missouri
    @Almost Missouri

    Forgot the link:
    https://www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/investigations/2019/12/18/reverse-mortgages-leave-families-battling-property-after-death/2597369001/

    , @Almost Missouri
    @Almost Missouri

    Forgot the link:

    https://www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/investigations/2019/12/18/reverse-mortgages-leave-families-battling-property-after-death/2597369001/

    , @Almost Missouri
    @Almost Missouri

    Forgot the link:

    https://www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/investigations/2019/12/18/reverse-mortgages-leave-families-battling-property-after-death/2597369001/

    , @Almost Missouri
    @Almost Missouri

    Forgot the link:

    https://www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/investigations/2019/12/18/reverse-mortgages-leave-families-battling-property-after-death/2597369001/

    , @Almost Missouri
    @Almost Missouri

    Forgot the link:

    https://www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/investigations/2019/12/18/reverse-mortgages-leave-families-battling-property-after-death/2597369001/

    , @Almost Missouri
    @Almost Missouri

    Forgot the link:

    https://www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/investigations/2019/12/18/reverse-mortgages-leave-families-battling-property-after-death/2597369001/

  9. @iffen
    Arson? Sabotage?

    Replies: @Barnard, @Cucksworth, @Jim Don Bob, @SunBakedSuburb, @Pop Warner, @Known Fact

    You could just say diversity and leave it at that.

  10. @iffen
    Arson? Sabotage?

    Replies: @Barnard, @Cucksworth, @Jim Don Bob, @SunBakedSuburb, @Pop Warner, @Known Fact

    Third world/low IQ immigration.

  11. A large hole in the street is for 7 years is most impressive, even for a sinister state bureaucracy. The SF Valley’s nice climate works against you in this case. Little rain fall and almost no freezing temps. A hole in street that big left open for 7 years in Chicago would have grown into an abyss a 1/2 square mile in surface area.

    But because Chicago refuses to be outdone, it does have its 300 or so miles of bikes lane set into the already narrow streets, roadway formerly meant for motor traffic. THAT is sensible infrastructure management!

    • Replies: @MBlanc46
    @MikeatMikedotMike

    Those idiot bike lanes might not be the most ridiculous transit project in the city’s history, but they’re on the short list.

    Replies: @Reg Cæsar, @Jim Don Bob

    , @Kaz
    @MikeatMikedotMike

    I'm not against the idea of bike lanes, but sounds like something that isn't usable 6 months out of the year considering the weather..

    Replies: @MikeatMikedotMike

    , @Up2Drew
    @MikeatMikedotMike

    Absolutely agree, as a Chicago resident. The bike lanes are lunacy, in large part because there wasn’t additional room available for bike lanes, they just carved them out of the previous overcrowded existing asphalt downtown.

    The bike lanes don’t even necessarily run in the same direction as one-way streets, and one’s basic instinct is not to look in the opposite direction of vehicular traffic when when crossing. So you get walloped by a bike, instead.

    I work in the Loop. Between the individuals walking the streets with the special oblivion that cell phone texting creates, and the impunity with which bicycle and scooter riders assume right-of-way against multi-ton vehicles, it’s amazing we’re not scooping bodies off the streets of downtown on a continuous basis.

    , @mmack
    @MikeatMikedotMike

    And the task of salting down the lakefront bike paths saw a Park District truck slide into Da Lake dis month:

    https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/police-respond-to-car-in-water-off-lake-shore-drive/2187816/

    https://abc7chicago.com/park-district-truck-slides-into-lake-michigan-near-oak-street-beach/5746525/

    Replies: @JMcG

  12. Diversity’s ultimate meltdown.

    All White : first rate engineering

    All Asian: first rate engineering, plus a likely hefty dose of corruption.

    Any other mix: all corruption, poor engineering, obligatory not noticing.

  13. Sounds like the day your water main will be finished will be the day when we’ve won the war in Afghanistan.

    Meanwhile, do Angelinos draw the water out the trench with a shaduf (like the Ancient Egyptians), or are you people there more advanced, and you use an Archimedes Screw?

    LA: If the typhus at City Hall don’t getcha, the cholera in Magnolia Blvd will.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    @Ano

    William Mulholland's 1914 water main still works, so other than a few spectacular leaks now and then, the water situation at present is okay. The new one is intended to survive the next Big One, which Mulholland's might not. It would be nice if they got the new one done before the Big One hits...

    Replies: @Ano

  14. iSteve Exclusive

    Video of grateful Magnolia Blvd residents getting fresh clean water…

    The funds for the well and handpump were raised by record sales of the charity single ‘We are the world’ by Africa for USA- a specially formed supergroup of African pop stars concerned at the plight of backward third-world California.

  15. When I moved to CA many years ago one of the locals explained the state to me:

    “The mountains are beautiful. Stay away from the valleys.”

    I left the state after ten years there–do miss the mountains…. 😉

  16. California is a case study on mass immigration given how nice it was just a few decades ago and where it’s now destined. I assume its past will be Memory Holed.

    Where did most of the settlers of California come from in the 1800s during and after the Gold Rush? I’ve heard there were a lot from the MidWest and the South but I have no idea.

    • Replies: @David Davenport
    @RichardTaylor

    Where did most of the settlers of California come from in the 1800s during and after the Gold Rush? I’ve heard there were a lot from the MidWest and the South but I have no idea.

    Regarding American westward re-settlement during the 19th Century: I think the general tendency was to move from east of the Mississippi to west along lines of latitude. Los Angeles, which was much smaller than San Francisco in the 1900's, had a reputation for drawing new citizens from former Confederate states. Some of their descendants voted for Californians Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan for President.

    I've needled Steve about this in the past -- what one might call D. W. Griffith's Southern California* -- but our host doesn't seem interested.

    * For example, the Ku Klux Klan, more accurately labeled the second Klan -- was active and rather popular in Los Angeles in the 1920's.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @RichardTaylor, @Flip, @Old Palo Altan

    , @I Have Scinde
    @RichardTaylor

    An old joke: Along the Oregon/California trail was a sign directing people to Oregon. Those who could read followed the Oregon Trail. Those who could not followed the California Trail.

    My understanding is that the majority of both migrations was midwestern in origin, with especially the northwest taking people primarily of Anglo-Saxon and Germanic descent. California probably received a larger relative proportion of Anglo-Irish (or Scots-Irish). Of course, rural and inland California was overwhelmed by Oklahomans in the 1930s, so its original population is not as much of a factor.

    As far as the Civil War is concerned, the entire state stayed Union, but Southern California (like Arizona) was a hotbed of Southern sympathy, while Northern California was emphatically pro-Union. That is probably the first of the major intrastate north-south tensions, some of which Mr. Sailer has written about over the years.

    Replies: @RichardTaylor, @anonn

  17. While I have no doubt the infrastructure is crumbling and the populace has no will nor skill to fix it, the bus fires seem to be something else.

    the whole invention of those shuttles was a way to screw Uber–now your uber can drop off you somewhere that, as LAX put it, “most riders will be able to reach their airline within an hour”. Not reach the gate, not get through security. and no guarantee the shuttle bus gets you there in an hour, so people were having to use a taxi.

    So as we know from the London uber debacle, the russian mafia is big into fleecing uber, but ya can’t fleece them if they go under. Maybe they are just telling the taxi union thugs they aren’t going to win? or perhaps it’s the taxis themselves?

    • Replies: @Alden
    @Alice

    Monday spent 45 minutes waiting for a shuttle bus to the terminals at LAX. I believe the airport didn’t buy any new shuttle buses to service their far away outposts.

    Merry Christmas to all Happy Hanukkah to all and enjoy whatever winter holiday that does not offend you.

    I once thought of a greeting card. White card stock with a white abstract design that wouldn’t offend Muslims or anyone else.
    Inside embossed greeting. Happy Whatever Winter Holiday doesn’t offend you.

  18. Bah, NYC has you beat as usual:

    Construction on New York City Water Tunnel #3 began in 1970 (planning began in 1954) and is expected to be completed in 2020 according to this outdated wiki:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_City_Water_Tunnel_No._3

    However, Mayor DeBlasio has diverted the funding “to other projects” so now completion is scheduled for “some time in the 2020’s”.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/06/nyregion/de-blasio-postpones-work-on-crucial-water-tunnel.html

    The reason for all the “urgency” is that if something bad would happen to Tunnel #1 and #2 (say a collapse because they are 100 years old) half of NY would be without water. Because the tunnels are in use, there’s no way to close them for inspection and all the original gate valves are corrode anyway:

    In 1954, unbeknownst to most residents of the city, several engineers went into a shaft to try to turn off the water supply in City Tunnel No. 1, to see if the tunnel needed repairs after being in operation for almost half a century. At the bottom of the shaft, sticking out of the tunnel, was a long bronze stem with a rotating wheel at the end. It was supposed to control the six-foot-diameter valve inside the pipeline. But when the engineers started to turn the handle, using all their might, it began to tremble and crack. “There was too much pressure on it,” Ward said.

    “They were afraid if they turned it any more the whole fucking thing would break,” Richard Fitzsimmons, Jr., the business manager of the sandhogs’ union, said.

    https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2003/09/01/city-of-water

    So an emergency replacement program was put in place due to this immediate crisis and a new tunnel was built in only 70 years. The end.

    I’m sure that there came a time in Rome when aqueduct repairs began to take longer and longer and finally “the whole fucking thing” broke and there was nobody left who knew how to repair it and anyway they no longer had the money and organizational skills to do it.

    • Replies: @El Dato
    @Jack D

    Cascading failure in a complex system based on a large number of dependencies, you say?

    This kind of problem can be seen regularly in IT.

    Programs that we are told to not touch because it's basically expensive to perform the analysis and rebuild it from scratch, and no-one would stump up the money anyway when its more profitable to rewrite the user interface in AnalScript or whatever is modern right now and pretend it does "AI".

    Would you rather have another Holocaust museum rather than a reliable water supply?

    Exactly.

    Replies: @Anonymous

    , @Reg Cæsar
    @Jack D

    Aqua Virgo: the only still functioning Roman Aqueduct of the Roman Empire


    http://storytrail.co/s3/uploads/video/poster/97/video_97_14628684164853914_poster.jpg

    Replies: @Lot

    , @nebulafox
    @Jack D

    DC makes them both look efficient. Only fitting.

    What more or less happened was that people did lose that knowledge, but the aqueducts still ran after 476. As long as nothing too disasterous happened, people could keep on living as they did under the Empire under late antiquity conditions. Essentially: living off the infastructure built in previous generations and not thinking about a day where they'd break and you'd need to know how to fix them. Sound familiar?

    But this being the real world with real things happening, something bad did eventually happen: the Gothic Wars. After which, the aqueducts broken during the fighting were never repaired. Partly, because there was no incentive with Rome's mass depopulation, but also partly because nobody knew how.

    (On a greater level, literacy declined in the Dark Ages not least because it wasn't perceived as necessary to attain a spot in the new aristocracy of decentralized, ruralized, militarized landlords. Much more important for your son to know how to handle a sword. This also happened in the surviving eastern remnant of the empire, albeit not nearly to the same extent. There were even occasional emperors who were illiterate.

    As another example, Constantinople's infamous walls, which broke the bodies and souls of many an invading army over the course of 1000 years, were built in late antiquity. It was one of the last great engineering achievements of the classical age of European civilization. A good thing they were there beforehand, though, because nobody would have had the resources to build them in the Dark Ages when the Sassanids and Arabs and Rus and all the rest came knocking...)

    Replies: @Alden, @S, @Anonymous

    , @Reg Cæsar
    @Jack D


    However, Mayor DeBlasio has diverted the funding “to other projects” so now completion is scheduled for “some time in the 2020’s”.

     

    If you believe that, my brother would like to talk to you about his lot across from the new state capitol in Willow. Which might be revived with the resale to Russia.

    And property is still available around the metro station(s) in Omsk:

    Eulogy For A Subway: Siberian City Decides To Bury Its Metro Once And For All


    https://i.redd.it/5i32iussq8x11.jpg

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/70/Omsk_Metro_deutsch.png
    , @R.G. Camara
    @Jack D

    There's a disaster movie story waiting to be written about that. I'm picturing a blizzard or hurricane knocking out the scape routes from Manhattan, and one of the tunnels freezing and collapsing.

    It's similar to the long delay on NYC's Second Avenue Subway, which was scheduled to begin as far back as 1920, construction actually began in the 1970s, and still is not finished to this day (although a few sections opened in the last few years): https://infogalactic.com/info/Second_Avenue_Subway

    The difference is that NYC's water Tunnel #3 is delayed because no one feels any urgency---there hasn't been a water crisis in NYC to make people demand it being finished.

    In contrast, the Second Avenue Subway has been delayed because generations of rich folks on the Upper East Side (such as the late Jeffrey Epstein) have never wanted to give the common rabble ease of access to their neighborhood. UES richies used the promise of such a subway in 1920 and the 1940s to get the ugly elevated subway lines demolished, leaving the Upper East Side serviced by one very overcrowded subway line (4-5-6), that doesn't go into the heart of the UES. But then made sure further construction on the line was delayed or blocked or abandoned.

    Replies: @prosa123

    , @notsaying
    @Jack D

    I remember reading that magazine article in the New Yorker quoted above more than 15 years ago. It was startling to realize that New York City ran the risk of going without water -- with no backup plan -- for years if something went wrong with one or both of their water tunnels.

    Now after years of having this enormous project on track to a final finish, De Blasio decided there were more important priorities and took money away from it. What would he do if one of the tunnels became inoperable? What could he do?

    This makes me think, oddly enough, of nuclear power. It keeps coming up as a solution in connection with replacing some of our carbon-based power that is causing global warming. But when you think of how poorly our officials and others in charge handle making decisions that involve risk management, trusting the lives and health of millions of people to safely live near lots more nuclear power plants is just too dangerous. And of course we have no safe way to dispose of the used fuel.

    I suspect it is just a human failing that when we don't want to think about catastrophic disasters we downgrade their impact or even ignore them.

    We should try to minimize getting ourselves into situations where catastrophic disasters can occur, such as nuclear power plants -- and nuclear weapons too.

    I hope nobody in New York City does anything further to delay their water tunnel #3 completion.

    Replies: @SafeNow, @Jack D, @David Davenport

    , @kaganovitch
    @Jack D

    And to think we missed out on just this sort of farsighted leadership when Wilhelm dropped out of the Presidential race. A tragedy , I tell you.

    , @prosa123
    @Jack D

    On a far smaller scale but of a rather ludicrous nature there's New York's ongoing sewer fiasco. Hundreds of homeowners north of Kennedy airport were horrified to find raw sewage in their basements, often several inches deep and with the stench rendering the houses nearly unliveable. The city admitted that a backed-up sewage pipe was the culprit, but said it was the fault of local residents for pouring cooking grease down sink drains - a physically impossible explanation. Finally, after massive criticism, city officials reluctantly admitted that cooking grease wasn't the culprit, which they knew all along, it actually was an old pipe that had collapsed.

  19. You got off easy.

    How long did it take to replace the eastern span of the SF Bay Bridge, and what was the multiple of the multi-$billion cost of doing that to the original cost of the entire span, including the western far-more-than-half?

    • Replies: @Alden
    @Gandydancer

    The new Bay Bridge, including the lighting was manufactured in China and put together here.

    It took about 7 years to erect a sound deflection wall for 8 blocks on the sides of the freeway in my Los Angeles neighborhood.

  20. When I moved to a small CA city a couple years ago, at a main intersection in the downtown they were constructing an apartment building which looked about half done. It wasn’t quite topped. It is four stories. They finally opened for leasing a couple months ago.

    That building would have been up start to finish in a maximum of three months in Houston. You have to see how fast they do construction there to believe it. And they have the same Mexicans on the job working eight times faster than we do in CA. There is no way it is the workers.

  21. @iffen
    Arson? Sabotage?

    Replies: @Barnard, @Cucksworth, @Jim Don Bob, @SunBakedSuburb, @Pop Warner, @Known Fact

    The buses I’ve been on lately didn’t look very flammable.

    ‘Mr Bond, they have a saying in Chicago: ‘Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time it’s enemy action’.’

  22. @Almost Missouri
    Off this Topic, but
    very much On regular iSteve Topics:

    USA Today launches "in depth" (but not too much depth) report on home"owners" who sold their homes to banks in reverse mortgages who are now discovering—or their heirs are discovering—that they no longer own what they sold.

    Of course, those banks followed the government's and media's demand that they increase lending to the melanin-enriched, but now it turns out that lending to the melanin-enriched was actually "predatory lending", so the banks will have to forgive the loans, give back the property and make up the loss by taking more money from less melanin-enriched sources.

    Replies: @Bill H, @Redneck farmer, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri

    That’s how reverse mortgages work, and the deal is spelled out before you sign the papers. The bank gives you money (you didn’t mention that part), and then keeps giving you money (you didn’t mention that part either), and then when you die the bank gets to sell your house and pocket the portion of the proceeds that represents the amount of money they gave you plus interest.

    If there is money left over from the sale, your heirs get it, but the basic part of the deal is that you have to repay what the bank gave you by selling the house. That was in the papers you signed.

    • Replies: @International Jew
    @Bill H

    I think AlmostMissouri understands all that. You've misunderstood him if you take his comment as praise for USA Today.

    , @MBlanc46
    @Bill H

    Yeah, but when it’s PoC, papers are racist.

  23. There is a saying among union workers on such jobs; when anyone is seen to be doing very much, the word is “don’t kill the job,” that is, whatever you do, don’t finish it so the rich paychecks can continue.
    By way of contrast, Hoover Dam was built in 5 years (1930 – 1935), and the contractor finished two years ahead of time and millions of dollars under budget.

    The country has changed.

    • Replies: @International Jew
    @Thucydides


    millions of dollars under budget
     
    Millions, pfft. Millions would be rounding error on a project like that today.
  24. Steve, I don’t think that you are giving government employees enough credit for systematically pursuing perfectly rational goals. The objective of government jobs is not necessarily to produce things like public transportation systems, life sustaining infrastructure etc. In a fragmented, low social trust society it is all about taking care of yourself. The primary output of the system is well paying, good benefit, low stress, secure jobs with nice pensions at the end. Those workers would be perfectly happy noodling away at the water system in front of your house from when they join the DWP at age 21 until they retire on disability at 51, and then passing the job on to their kid.
    Don’t think of it as a water pipe. Think of it as a medieval cathedral.

    • Agree: Daniel H, Hail
    • LOL: Liza
    • Replies: @SunBakedSuburb
    @Alfa158

    "Don't think of it as a water pipe. Think of it as a medieval cathedral."

    The Sunken Cathedral. All sorts of California skullduggery takes place underground. Like in Governor Newsom's Napa Valley wine caves.

    , @Hypnotoad666
    @Alfa158


    The primary output of the system is well paying, good benefit, low stress, secure jobs with nice pensions at the end.
     
    You forgot the private contractors who extract endless funds from endless work (and then the additional contracts for fixing the problems with the original work).

    This is what you call a public-private partnership.

    Replies: @Alfa158

  25. anonymous[134] • Disclaimer says:

    Most infrastructure is bad by design in California. People can blame illegals, but it’s overwhelmingly White and Jewish Boomers who are responsible for it.

    It’s not Hispanics filing Environmental Impact Studies and blocking infrastructure improvements via local councils. Hispanics do have an impact, or lack thereof, in that they could hold local governments accountable, like the middle class Whites of yesteryear, before they fled. But that interferes with their nightly four hours of video games and TV.

    When the Boomers are ultimately relegated to their retirement homes, I wonder if Gen Z will say “Well, that’s the cost of progress”, much like the GSD, pre-Boomer generations.

  26. @Jack D
    Bah, NYC has you beat as usual:

    Construction on New York City Water Tunnel #3 began in 1970 (planning began in 1954) and is expected to be completed in 2020 according to this outdated wiki:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_City_Water_Tunnel_No._3

    However, Mayor DeBlasio has diverted the funding "to other projects" so now completion is scheduled for "some time in the 2020's".

    https://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/06/nyregion/de-blasio-postpones-work-on-crucial-water-tunnel.html

    The reason for all the "urgency" is that if something bad would happen to Tunnel #1 and #2 (say a collapse because they are 100 years old) half of NY would be without water. Because the tunnels are in use, there's no way to close them for inspection and all the original gate valves are corrode anyway:

    In 1954, unbeknownst to most residents of the city, several engineers went into a shaft to try to turn off the water supply in City Tunnel No. 1, to see if the tunnel needed repairs after being in operation for almost half a century. At the bottom of the shaft, sticking out of the tunnel, was a long bronze stem with a rotating wheel at the end. It was supposed to control the six-foot-diameter valve inside the pipeline. But when the engineers started to turn the handle, using all their might, it began to tremble and crack. “There was too much pressure on it,” Ward said.

    “They were afraid if they turned it any more the whole fucking thing would break,” Richard Fitzsimmons, Jr., the business manager of the sandhogs’ union, said.

     
    https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2003/09/01/city-of-water

    So an emergency replacement program was put in place due to this immediate crisis and a new tunnel was built in only 70 years. The end.

    I'm sure that there came a time in Rome when aqueduct repairs began to take longer and longer and finally "the whole fucking thing" broke and there was nobody left who knew how to repair it and anyway they no longer had the money and organizational skills to do it.

    Replies: @El Dato, @Reg Cæsar, @nebulafox, @Reg Cæsar, @R.G. Camara, @notsaying, @kaganovitch, @prosa123

    Cascading failure in a complex system based on a large number of dependencies, you say?

    This kind of problem can be seen regularly in IT.

    Programs that we are told to not touch because it’s basically expensive to perform the analysis and rebuild it from scratch, and no-one would stump up the money anyway when its more profitable to rewrite the user interface in AnalScript or whatever is modern right now and pretend it does “AI”.

    Would you rather have another Holocaust museum rather than a reliable water supply?

    Exactly.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    @El Dato


    Would you rather have another Holocaust museum rather than a reliable water supply?
     
    The Holocaust museum is more important because of the existential threat that the European people pose to Jews.
  27. anon[336] • Disclaimer says:

    O/T…

    Saw this the other day. The conservative kids are waking up to the Sailer Strategy, and they are approaching it with race realism and without the baggage of dumb libertarian bullshit.

    It’s kind of embarrassing when a 22 year-old can articulate a more coherent political strategy than all of the conservative brain trust combined.

    Highly recommended from a Gen Xer

    • Replies: @Danindc
    @anon

    That kid is smart, brave and charismatic. I have been a fan since the beginning. He is our last best hope.

    Replies: @Justvisiting

  28. How about the Oroville spillway fiasco in 2017? (1)

    Blocked. Severe erosion from the damaged spillway sent massive amounts of rock and debris into the channel below the Oroville dam, raising water levels above the point where the hydroelectric plant could not operate. Courtesy: Dale Kolke/California Department of Water Resources

    .

    .
    MERRY CHRISTMAS 🎄
    _________________

    (1) https://www.powermag.com/oroville-dam-power-plant-may-reopen-this-week/

  29. Nothing new. I remember that a freeway interchange (between the 10 and the 210 in Redlands) was under construction throughout my years in graduate school. (We were at UCLA at the same time—though I was in a south campus program.)

  30. Steve, I don’t think that you are giving government employees enough credit for systematically pursuing perfectly rational goals. The objective of government jobs is not necessarily to produce things like public transportation systems, life sustaining infrastructure etc. In a fragmented, low social trust society it is all about taking care of yourself. The primary output of the system is well paying, good benefit, low stress, secure jobs with nice pensions at the end. Those workers would be perfectly happy noodling away at the water system in front of your house from when they join the DWP at age 21 until they retire on disability at 51, and then passing the job on to their kid. Don’t think of it as a water pipe. Think of it as a medieval cathedral.

    Altai this is a stunningly on target comment. The bolded section is about as clear and cogent as it gets.

    However, I must say I disagree about the medieval cathedral bit. Those were multi-generational projects but they were multi-generational projects for the exact opposite reason: those people believed in something transcendent and also believed in the future of their people–their children, their community, their nation, their civilization–and so worked to enrich their posterity with their work. A wholly different ethos than the “just-give-me-a-comfy-sinecure” one that dominates in our minoritarian, balkanized “society”.

    • Replies: @Jack D
    @AnotherDad

    I'm sure that there were make-work jobs in the medieval Church and state - guardian of the Holy Foreskin, warden of the King's armor, etc. There were always distant relatives and loyal followers who needed to be rewarded. Bureaucracies were always corrupt and dysfunctional. When it took hundreds of years to build a cathedral it wasn't entirely because it was all hand labor. There were all sorts of guilds and no one was allowed to step on the other guild's turf. Funding was a problem before modern taxation and banking, etc.


    What really happened is that the US had one brief shining moment (OK a century) from say 1865 to 1965 when we were actually capable of getting shit done and now we have fallen back into the usual historical pattern. Remember that modern humans have been around for at least 50,000 years and for maybe 40,000 out of those 50,000 absolutely nothing got done.

    Replies: @Alden, @J.Ross, @Sparkon, @Peterike

    , @Joe Stalin
    @AnotherDad

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3U13xWQUk5k

  31. @Jack D
    Bah, NYC has you beat as usual:

    Construction on New York City Water Tunnel #3 began in 1970 (planning began in 1954) and is expected to be completed in 2020 according to this outdated wiki:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_City_Water_Tunnel_No._3

    However, Mayor DeBlasio has diverted the funding "to other projects" so now completion is scheduled for "some time in the 2020's".

    https://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/06/nyregion/de-blasio-postpones-work-on-crucial-water-tunnel.html

    The reason for all the "urgency" is that if something bad would happen to Tunnel #1 and #2 (say a collapse because they are 100 years old) half of NY would be without water. Because the tunnels are in use, there's no way to close them for inspection and all the original gate valves are corrode anyway:

    In 1954, unbeknownst to most residents of the city, several engineers went into a shaft to try to turn off the water supply in City Tunnel No. 1, to see if the tunnel needed repairs after being in operation for almost half a century. At the bottom of the shaft, sticking out of the tunnel, was a long bronze stem with a rotating wheel at the end. It was supposed to control the six-foot-diameter valve inside the pipeline. But when the engineers started to turn the handle, using all their might, it began to tremble and crack. “There was too much pressure on it,” Ward said.

    “They were afraid if they turned it any more the whole fucking thing would break,” Richard Fitzsimmons, Jr., the business manager of the sandhogs’ union, said.

     
    https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2003/09/01/city-of-water

    So an emergency replacement program was put in place due to this immediate crisis and a new tunnel was built in only 70 years. The end.

    I'm sure that there came a time in Rome when aqueduct repairs began to take longer and longer and finally "the whole fucking thing" broke and there was nobody left who knew how to repair it and anyway they no longer had the money and organizational skills to do it.

    Replies: @El Dato, @Reg Cæsar, @nebulafox, @Reg Cæsar, @R.G. Camara, @notsaying, @kaganovitch, @prosa123

    • Replies: @Lot
    @Reg Cæsar

    I just looked into this for the same reason, to see if any Roman aqueducts are still being used as they were built for. I vaguely remember learning in school this was the case, but turns out not really.

    Virgo was used for about 500 years, then restored after 1000 years of disuse. Now used for multiple fountains and landscape watering.

    In terms of continuous use without major restorations, it doesn’t look like any Roman aqueducts qualify other than perhaps the first section of one in Spain.

    http://www.romanaqueducts.info/q&a/11stillinuse.htm

    Replies: @Known Fact

  32. @iffen
    Arson? Sabotage?

    Replies: @Barnard, @Cucksworth, @Jim Don Bob, @SunBakedSuburb, @Pop Warner, @Known Fact

    “Arson? Sabotage?”

    Both. Governor Newsom is an agent of Chaos. He is also a vampire.

  33. @Almost Missouri
    Off this Topic, but
    very much On regular iSteve Topics:

    USA Today launches "in depth" (but not too much depth) report on home"owners" who sold their homes to banks in reverse mortgages who are now discovering—or their heirs are discovering—that they no longer own what they sold.

    Of course, those banks followed the government's and media's demand that they increase lending to the melanin-enriched, but now it turns out that lending to the melanin-enriched was actually "predatory lending", so the banks will have to forgive the loans, give back the property and make up the loss by taking more money from less melanin-enriched sources.

    Replies: @Bill H, @Redneck farmer, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri

    Will banks be able to ask, “English, motherf***er, do you understand it”, someday soon?

    • Replies: @RadicalCenter
    @Redneck farmer

    Well, in much of the "USA", ATM machines will be likelier to ask,
    "Comprende Espanol, pendejo?"

    (sincerest apologies for the lack of a tilde in the word Espanol)

  34. Alfa158 nails the “i’ve got mine” comfy sinecure in our balkanized diversitopia aspect of this phenomenon:

    In a fragmented, low social trust society it is all about taking care of yourself. The primary output of the system is well paying, good benefit, low stress, secure jobs with nice pensions at the end.

    A couple of related factors:

    — Massive increase in white-collar, “professional” parasites–lawyers, consultatants, planners, activists–glommed onto everything.

    — Feminization of society, culture, institutions. Loss of male–“just do it”–mentality.

    This–diversity, bureaucracy, parasitism, feminization–all dovetail and reinforce the “can’t do shit” atmosphere of our age.

    • Replies: @Alden
    @AnotherDad

    Friends and I created a slogan for solving the homeless crisis. Construction, not counseling consulting and coordinating.

    Back when National Review was still reasonable it did a comparison of the New York City public school system, the New York City Catholic school system and the public state school system of the European Union

    Among other things, the study found the NYC ( (7 million population ) public school system had more administrators than the European Union
    With 380 million population.

    The NYC Catholic schools were all independent of a diocese education department. Each school was administered by principals, clerks book keepers etc. No innovative new programs, just conformity to the state mandated curriculum and standard teaching methods materials and textbooks, no weekends wasted on endless teacher training taught by parasites who’d never set foot in a classroom.

    , @Clyde
    @AnotherDad

    Dittos on the feminization of society.

  35. @Alfa158
    Steve, I don’t think that you are giving government employees enough credit for systematically pursuing perfectly rational goals. The objective of government jobs is not necessarily to produce things like public transportation systems, life sustaining infrastructure etc. In a fragmented, low social trust society it is all about taking care of yourself. The primary output of the system is well paying, good benefit, low stress, secure jobs with nice pensions at the end. Those workers would be perfectly happy noodling away at the water system in front of your house from when they join the DWP at age 21 until they retire on disability at 51, and then passing the job on to their kid.
    Don’t think of it as a water pipe. Think of it as a medieval cathedral.

    Replies: @SunBakedSuburb, @Hypnotoad666

    “Don’t think of it as a water pipe. Think of it as a medieval cathedral.”

    The Sunken Cathedral. All sorts of California skullduggery takes place underground. Like in Governor Newsom’s Napa Valley wine caves.

  36. @Alfa158
    Steve, I don’t think that you are giving government employees enough credit for systematically pursuing perfectly rational goals. The objective of government jobs is not necessarily to produce things like public transportation systems, life sustaining infrastructure etc. In a fragmented, low social trust society it is all about taking care of yourself. The primary output of the system is well paying, good benefit, low stress, secure jobs with nice pensions at the end. Those workers would be perfectly happy noodling away at the water system in front of your house from when they join the DWP at age 21 until they retire on disability at 51, and then passing the job on to their kid.
    Don’t think of it as a water pipe. Think of it as a medieval cathedral.

    Replies: @SunBakedSuburb, @Hypnotoad666

    The primary output of the system is well paying, good benefit, low stress, secure jobs with nice pensions at the end.

    You forgot the private contractors who extract endless funds from endless work (and then the additional contracts for fixing the problems with the original work).

    This is what you call a public-private partnership.

    • Replies: @Alfa158
    @Hypnotoad666

    Yep, don't want to leave them out. The California high speed choo-choo train fiasco was also partly due to that.
    No serious person actually thought that there would be a bullet train from LA to Frisco. Too hard to get right of way for new track routes that are compatible with 200 mph trains. And if you did, the route would either need to hug the coastline or go over mountains. Trains really suck at mountain climbing because of their very poor power and braking force to mass ratios. Even a 200 mph train would have to crawl at 25 mph going up and down those mountains. It would have been fun though to have 200 mph trains blasting through Malibu.
    Some analysts think that the whole project was a scheme to divert $20B. The project was to start spending some money at the cities on each end to prepare for the rest. It was rumored that the money has been diverted to cover operating deficits in the transit systems in LA and the Bay area. The rest of the money was siphoned off to pay back engineering and construction companies, non-governmental organizations, environmental consultants, marketing and advertising companies, law firms etc. who supported the election of the politicians involved.
    I don't think there will ever be a truthful accounting for where all the money went.

    Replies: @Alden

  37. Very well done, my friend….I lit innumerable bong hits listening to SD around 77-78-79. Can’t say as I paid attention to the lyrics all that closely though. lol

  38. @Jack D
    Bah, NYC has you beat as usual:

    Construction on New York City Water Tunnel #3 began in 1970 (planning began in 1954) and is expected to be completed in 2020 according to this outdated wiki:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_City_Water_Tunnel_No._3

    However, Mayor DeBlasio has diverted the funding "to other projects" so now completion is scheduled for "some time in the 2020's".

    https://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/06/nyregion/de-blasio-postpones-work-on-crucial-water-tunnel.html

    The reason for all the "urgency" is that if something bad would happen to Tunnel #1 and #2 (say a collapse because they are 100 years old) half of NY would be without water. Because the tunnels are in use, there's no way to close them for inspection and all the original gate valves are corrode anyway:

    In 1954, unbeknownst to most residents of the city, several engineers went into a shaft to try to turn off the water supply in City Tunnel No. 1, to see if the tunnel needed repairs after being in operation for almost half a century. At the bottom of the shaft, sticking out of the tunnel, was a long bronze stem with a rotating wheel at the end. It was supposed to control the six-foot-diameter valve inside the pipeline. But when the engineers started to turn the handle, using all their might, it began to tremble and crack. “There was too much pressure on it,” Ward said.

    “They were afraid if they turned it any more the whole fucking thing would break,” Richard Fitzsimmons, Jr., the business manager of the sandhogs’ union, said.

     
    https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2003/09/01/city-of-water

    So an emergency replacement program was put in place due to this immediate crisis and a new tunnel was built in only 70 years. The end.

    I'm sure that there came a time in Rome when aqueduct repairs began to take longer and longer and finally "the whole fucking thing" broke and there was nobody left who knew how to repair it and anyway they no longer had the money and organizational skills to do it.

    Replies: @El Dato, @Reg Cæsar, @nebulafox, @Reg Cæsar, @R.G. Camara, @notsaying, @kaganovitch, @prosa123

    DC makes them both look efficient. Only fitting.

    What more or less happened was that people did lose that knowledge, but the aqueducts still ran after 476. As long as nothing too disasterous happened, people could keep on living as they did under the Empire under late antiquity conditions. Essentially: living off the infastructure built in previous generations and not thinking about a day where they’d break and you’d need to know how to fix them. Sound familiar?

    But this being the real world with real things happening, something bad did eventually happen: the Gothic Wars. After which, the aqueducts broken during the fighting were never repaired. Partly, because there was no incentive with Rome’s mass depopulation, but also partly because nobody knew how.

    (On a greater level, literacy declined in the Dark Ages not least because it wasn’t perceived as necessary to attain a spot in the new aristocracy of decentralized, ruralized, militarized landlords. Much more important for your son to know how to handle a sword. This also happened in the surviving eastern remnant of the empire, albeit not nearly to the same extent. There were even occasional emperors who were illiterate.

    As another example, Constantinople’s infamous walls, which broke the bodies and souls of many an invading army over the course of 1000 years, were built in late antiquity. It was one of the last great engineering achievements of the classical age of European civilization. A good thing they were there beforehand, though, because nobody would have had the resources to build them in the Dark Ages when the Sassanids and Arabs and Rus and all the rest came knocking…)

    • Replies: @Alden
    @nebulafox

    If you’re interested in the so called dark ages check out the Justinian Plague, 500 to about 650. It was far worse than the later medieval great plagues. There was not much written about it because so many died. Historians estimate as much as 70-80% in many areas.

    That Plague devastated the Middle East to Armenia and the borders of west Asia and Europe, the old Roman Empire. The de population was a big reason why the S Arabs and Vikings were able to invade and conquer so easily.

    With no parents and teachers the surviving children grew up illiterate. The endless wars and invasions contributed of course.

    Check it out it’s a very important but largely unknown part of the history of the European people’s.

    Replies: @nebulafox

    , @S
    @nebulafox


    What more or less happened was that people did lose that knowledge, but the aqueducts still ran after 476. As long as nothing too disasterous happened, people could keep on living as they did under the Empire under late antiquity conditions.
     
    Similarly, after the Fall of the West, people continued to use imperial coinage. However, due to wear, new coins would still have to be minted.

    These were in many instances copies of the old Roman coins, with the caveat that as the barbarians who minted them were often themselves quite illiterate the 'writing' on them was in a great many instances simply meaningless wavy lines that only looked like actual writing from a distance.

    They knew official and real Roman coins were supposed to have this thing called writing on them, so they did the best they knew how to continue the tradition.

    These are called 'barbarous imitation' coins.

    [Remindful in a somewhat disturbing way of that movie called 'Idiocracy.']

    Replies: @Hippopotamusdrome, @Seneca44

    , @Anonymous
    @nebulafox

    It's a fascinating phenomenon to observe that a great many things that were once manufactured cannot be feasibly made any longer. The knowledge of how to do it has been lost and the infrastructure and supply chain of necessary materials is lost, and restarting the machine becomes orders of magnitude too expensive.

    I was involved in high end audio for a while and built several vacuum tube amps , preamps, FM tuner back ends, et al. Everyone always asked "but, where do you get the tubes?" At that time there were still feasible supply line to make new ones that were any good. But the market for new good tubes was just not quite big enough, and end users often willfully ignorant and would buy poorly made ones, and the supply line is now kaput. All the Litton machinery was bought up by the Chinese or by Ripoffchardson in LaFox, Illinois, and the cathode materials are no longer available. You can get something from Mallinckrodt that will sort of work, but not perform like the correct materials.

    You can still build "a tube": artisinal manufacture of 1915 tech tubes is in fact a thing now, done by one transvestite character

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ppj3gqUTt9E

    who has some interesting content on YouTube (you can not make this stuff up!) , and high power large transmitting tubes are still a very feasible business, as are TWTs, photomultipliers, etc., but a good 6550....spoiled contractors say they can but at >$200 apiece in 1K quantity.

    Vacuum tube circuits also require transformers and again, good luck getting good ones any more. Yes, it can be done but is a lot of work and many of the best ones are simply not reproducible. The very best were the product of one man who died decades ago and deliberately took as much of the technique to the grave as he could. A dumpster diver soyboy in Philadelphia saved a lot of the documents but the docs are wrong in a lot of cases, either on purpose or just revised in the engineering> production loop and corrections passed down orally or in other paperwork which is now lost.

    Aircraft are lucky in one sense; the FAA requires a lot of data that is generally carefully warehoused and when the companies go broke you can sometimes get the data from those archives, but rarely in immense detail needed to actually start production.

    But in general, foundry practices and even some types of machining have deteriorated in terms of what's feasibly done in many cases. You'd think anything that could be done on paper tape controlled hard tooling could be done with 5 axis CNC, but in some cases, not so.

  39. @AnotherDad

    Steve, I don’t think that you are giving government employees enough credit for systematically pursuing perfectly rational goals. The objective of government jobs is not necessarily to produce things like public transportation systems, life sustaining infrastructure etc. In a fragmented, low social trust society it is all about taking care of yourself. The primary output of the system is well paying, good benefit, low stress, secure jobs with nice pensions at the end. Those workers would be perfectly happy noodling away at the water system in front of your house from when they join the DWP at age 21 until they retire on disability at 51, and then passing the job on to their kid. Don’t think of it as a water pipe. Think of it as a medieval cathedral.
     
    Altai this is a stunningly on target comment. The bolded section is about as clear and cogent as it gets.

    However, I must say I disagree about the medieval cathedral bit. Those were multi-generational projects but they were multi-generational projects for the exact opposite reason: those people believed in something transcendent and also believed in the future of their people--their children, their community, their nation, their civilization--and so worked to enrich their posterity with their work. A wholly different ethos than the "just-give-me-a-comfy-sinecure" one that dominates in our minoritarian, balkanized "society".

    Replies: @Jack D, @Joe Stalin

    I’m sure that there were make-work jobs in the medieval Church and state – guardian of the Holy Foreskin, warden of the King’s armor, etc. There were always distant relatives and loyal followers who needed to be rewarded. Bureaucracies were always corrupt and dysfunctional. When it took hundreds of years to build a cathedral it wasn’t entirely because it was all hand labor. There were all sorts of guilds and no one was allowed to step on the other guild’s turf. Funding was a problem before modern taxation and banking, etc.

    What really happened is that the US had one brief shining moment (OK a century) from say 1865 to 1965 when we were actually capable of getting shit done and now we have fallen back into the usual historical pattern. Remember that modern humans have been around for at least 50,000 years and for maybe 40,000 out of those 50,000 absolutely nothing got done.

    • Replies: @Alden
    @Jack D

    You’re right. One reason the cathedrals have lasted so long is that only qualified experts were allowed to do the work. A big delayer was funding. A cathedral is a status symbol and a luxury. There was a lot of fund raising totally separate from regular church revenues.

    Much of the building was really engineering and architectural research and development. The designers would want to do something splendid. But it couldn’t be done with existing technology. So it was delayed till some one figured out what to do. Bruneschilleni and the dome of Florence cathedral is an excellent example of this.

    Flying buttresses, arched round ceiling supports instead of straight rafters. The concepts often came first, technology second.

    , @J.Ross
    @Jack D

    So building homesteads in savage-infested wilderness and whaling and working at enlightenment era trades and inventing modern science is nothing. Okay.

    Replies: @Jack D

    , @Sparkon
    @Jack D


    Remember that modern humans have been around for at least 50,000 years and for maybe 40,000 out of those 50,000 absolutely nothing got done.
     
    Not exactly. Don't forget or overlook cave paintings dating from up to 40,000 years ago in Indonesia, Spain, Russia, and France, among others. During that time, I suggest our spoken language was developing slowly but surely, along with human culture, until the time when men learned to make their marks as components of a written language about 5,100 years ago, which is just the blink of an eye in geologic terms. Before that, most human knowledge was passed on by word of mouth, which would have been a slow and uncertain process. Nevertheless, however long it took for their development, obviously Sumerian and Akkadian were fully developed languages before they were ever written down.
    , @Peterike
    @Jack D

    “I’m sure that there were make-work jobs in the medieval Church and state – guardian of the Holy Foreskin”

    Mocking condescension isn’t the way to make friends across the aisle. Ok, Super Jew?

    Replies: @anon, @Mr. Anon

  40. The inability of contemporary society to build things quickly and effectively is troubling and a sign of a failing society.

    China can build things, but the quality isn’t there and things are falling apart quickly. Too much corruption there, but if that can be fixed, the Chinese may make it.

    America is likely screwed.

  41. @Jack D
    Bah, NYC has you beat as usual:

    Construction on New York City Water Tunnel #3 began in 1970 (planning began in 1954) and is expected to be completed in 2020 according to this outdated wiki:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_City_Water_Tunnel_No._3

    However, Mayor DeBlasio has diverted the funding "to other projects" so now completion is scheduled for "some time in the 2020's".

    https://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/06/nyregion/de-blasio-postpones-work-on-crucial-water-tunnel.html

    The reason for all the "urgency" is that if something bad would happen to Tunnel #1 and #2 (say a collapse because they are 100 years old) half of NY would be without water. Because the tunnels are in use, there's no way to close them for inspection and all the original gate valves are corrode anyway:

    In 1954, unbeknownst to most residents of the city, several engineers went into a shaft to try to turn off the water supply in City Tunnel No. 1, to see if the tunnel needed repairs after being in operation for almost half a century. At the bottom of the shaft, sticking out of the tunnel, was a long bronze stem with a rotating wheel at the end. It was supposed to control the six-foot-diameter valve inside the pipeline. But when the engineers started to turn the handle, using all their might, it began to tremble and crack. “There was too much pressure on it,” Ward said.

    “They were afraid if they turned it any more the whole fucking thing would break,” Richard Fitzsimmons, Jr., the business manager of the sandhogs’ union, said.

     
    https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2003/09/01/city-of-water

    So an emergency replacement program was put in place due to this immediate crisis and a new tunnel was built in only 70 years. The end.

    I'm sure that there came a time in Rome when aqueduct repairs began to take longer and longer and finally "the whole fucking thing" broke and there was nobody left who knew how to repair it and anyway they no longer had the money and organizational skills to do it.

    Replies: @El Dato, @Reg Cæsar, @nebulafox, @Reg Cæsar, @R.G. Camara, @notsaying, @kaganovitch, @prosa123

    However, Mayor DeBlasio has diverted the funding “to other projects” so now completion is scheduled for “some time in the 2020’s”.

    If you believe that, my brother would like to talk to you about his lot across from the new state capitol in Willow. Which might be revived with the resale to Russia.

    And property is still available around the metro station(s) in Omsk:

    Eulogy For A Subway: Siberian City Decides To Bury Its Metro Once And For All

  42. My LA neighborhood is built on sand. Which means the sidewalks sometimes cave in when it rains and the underlying sand washes away into the gutter.

    There’s a section of sidewalk a block from me that caved in during the last rain in April. I called it in directly to the sidewalk repair people. Next day a sawhorse covered the hole. Sounds good no?

    8 months later the hole’s still there. The sawhorse disappeared but the orange cone’s still there.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    @Alden


    My LA neighborhood is built on sand. Which means the sidewalks sometimes cave in when it rains and the underlying sand washes away into the gutter.
     
    How well does a sand foundation absorb earthquakes, compared to other foundations?

    Replies: @Jack D, @Alden

  43. A theme Victor Davis Hanson returns to often, and for good reason. California has taken the many blessings our forefathers bequeathed us…….and proceeded to crap on them. And as of late – quite literally.

    Alfa158 nails it. The point is not that anything actually gets built, expanded or repaired. The whole point is to spend the money.

    Consider: The bureaucrats who administer various social programs like food stamps, HUD housing and the like don’t get rewarded by cutting the rolls. They get rewarded for expanding them. Hence the shrieks and screams over Trump’s “mean” proposal to cut food stamp rolls by about 2%.

    Within my lifetime I can recall the common meme of the Unemployment Office Lady, with the looks and charm of a Margaret Hamilton character, badgering the applicant about how much job-seeking he had undertaken lately. You sure don’t see that anymore.

  44. @AnotherDad
    Alfa158 nails the "i've got mine" comfy sinecure in our balkanized diversitopia aspect of this phenomenon:

    In a fragmented, low social trust society it is all about taking care of yourself. The primary output of the system is well paying, good benefit, low stress, secure jobs with nice pensions at the end.
     
    A couple of related factors:

    -- Massive increase in white-collar, "professional" parasites--lawyers, consultatants, planners, activists--glommed onto everything.

    -- Feminization of society, culture, institutions. Loss of male--"just do it"--mentality.

    This--diversity, bureaucracy, parasitism, feminization--all dovetail and reinforce the "can't do shit" atmosphere of our age.

    Replies: @Alden, @Clyde

    Friends and I created a slogan for solving the homeless crisis. Construction, not counseling consulting and coordinating.

    Back when National Review was still reasonable it did a comparison of the New York City public school system, the New York City Catholic school system and the public state school system of the European Union

    Among other things, the study found the NYC ( (7 million population ) public school system had more administrators than the European Union
    With 380 million population.

    The NYC Catholic schools were all independent of a diocese education department. Each school was administered by principals, clerks book keepers etc. No innovative new programs, just conformity to the state mandated curriculum and standard teaching methods materials and textbooks, no weekends wasted on endless teacher training taught by parasites who’d never set foot in a classroom.

  45. @Jack D
    Bah, NYC has you beat as usual:

    Construction on New York City Water Tunnel #3 began in 1970 (planning began in 1954) and is expected to be completed in 2020 according to this outdated wiki:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_City_Water_Tunnel_No._3

    However, Mayor DeBlasio has diverted the funding "to other projects" so now completion is scheduled for "some time in the 2020's".

    https://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/06/nyregion/de-blasio-postpones-work-on-crucial-water-tunnel.html

    The reason for all the "urgency" is that if something bad would happen to Tunnel #1 and #2 (say a collapse because they are 100 years old) half of NY would be without water. Because the tunnels are in use, there's no way to close them for inspection and all the original gate valves are corrode anyway:

    In 1954, unbeknownst to most residents of the city, several engineers went into a shaft to try to turn off the water supply in City Tunnel No. 1, to see if the tunnel needed repairs after being in operation for almost half a century. At the bottom of the shaft, sticking out of the tunnel, was a long bronze stem with a rotating wheel at the end. It was supposed to control the six-foot-diameter valve inside the pipeline. But when the engineers started to turn the handle, using all their might, it began to tremble and crack. “There was too much pressure on it,” Ward said.

    “They were afraid if they turned it any more the whole fucking thing would break,” Richard Fitzsimmons, Jr., the business manager of the sandhogs’ union, said.

     
    https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2003/09/01/city-of-water

    So an emergency replacement program was put in place due to this immediate crisis and a new tunnel was built in only 70 years. The end.

    I'm sure that there came a time in Rome when aqueduct repairs began to take longer and longer and finally "the whole fucking thing" broke and there was nobody left who knew how to repair it and anyway they no longer had the money and organizational skills to do it.

    Replies: @El Dato, @Reg Cæsar, @nebulafox, @Reg Cæsar, @R.G. Camara, @notsaying, @kaganovitch, @prosa123

    There’s a disaster movie story waiting to be written about that. I’m picturing a blizzard or hurricane knocking out the scape routes from Manhattan, and one of the tunnels freezing and collapsing.

    It’s similar to the long delay on NYC’s Second Avenue Subway, which was scheduled to begin as far back as 1920, construction actually began in the 1970s, and still is not finished to this day (although a few sections opened in the last few years): https://infogalactic.com/info/Second_Avenue_Subway

    The difference is that NYC’s water Tunnel #3 is delayed because no one feels any urgency—there hasn’t been a water crisis in NYC to make people demand it being finished.

    In contrast, the Second Avenue Subway has been delayed because generations of rich folks on the Upper East Side (such as the late Jeffrey Epstein) have never wanted to give the common rabble ease of access to their neighborhood. UES richies used the promise of such a subway in 1920 and the 1940s to get the ugly elevated subway lines demolished, leaving the Upper East Side serviced by one very overcrowded subway line (4-5-6), that doesn’t go into the heart of the UES. But then made sure further construction on the line was delayed or blocked or abandoned.

    • Replies: @prosa123
    @R.G. Camara

    In contrast, the Second Avenue Subway has been delayed because generations of rich folks on the Upper East Side (such as the late Jeffrey Epstein) have never wanted to give the common rabble ease of access to their neighborhood. UES richies used the promise of such a subway in 1920 and the 1940s to get the ugly elevated subway lines demolished, leaving the Upper East Side serviced by one very overcrowded subway line (4-5-6), that doesn’t go into the heart of the UES. But then made sure further construction on the line was delayed or blocked or abandoned.

    The Second Avenue Subway could have gotten built in the early 1970's, except for some very dubious money-shuffling. Federal funds had become available, and to qualify all the city had to do was match a relatively small amount of the federal money using some of its own funds it already had allocated for that purpose. These allocated city funds were a tiny percentage of the federal money they would allow the city to receive. It looked for all the world as if the work was just about to start.

    Of course that didn't happen. Because of some fare collection shortfalls the subway fare would have to be raised by five cents. A trivial amount to be sure, but the mayor, Abraham Beame, was worried about the opposition a fare increase would engender. Using a very dubious but somehow legal scheme known thereafter as the Beame Shuffle, he used the funds set aside for the Second Avenue Subway construction to cover the existing subway's operating deficits and avoid the fare increase.

    With the city's money skimmed off, it could no longer qualify for the vastly greater amount of federal money. The Second Avenue Subway never got built, except for a few useless test segments, and within a short period of time the subway fare had to go up, by more than the five cents Beame had tried to stave off.

  46. @AnotherDad

    Steve, I don’t think that you are giving government employees enough credit for systematically pursuing perfectly rational goals. The objective of government jobs is not necessarily to produce things like public transportation systems, life sustaining infrastructure etc. In a fragmented, low social trust society it is all about taking care of yourself. The primary output of the system is well paying, good benefit, low stress, secure jobs with nice pensions at the end. Those workers would be perfectly happy noodling away at the water system in front of your house from when they join the DWP at age 21 until they retire on disability at 51, and then passing the job on to their kid. Don’t think of it as a water pipe. Think of it as a medieval cathedral.
     
    Altai this is a stunningly on target comment. The bolded section is about as clear and cogent as it gets.

    However, I must say I disagree about the medieval cathedral bit. Those were multi-generational projects but they were multi-generational projects for the exact opposite reason: those people believed in something transcendent and also believed in the future of their people--their children, their community, their nation, their civilization--and so worked to enrich their posterity with their work. A wholly different ethos than the "just-give-me-a-comfy-sinecure" one that dominates in our minoritarian, balkanized "society".

    Replies: @Jack D, @Joe Stalin

  47. @Jack D
    @AnotherDad

    I'm sure that there were make-work jobs in the medieval Church and state - guardian of the Holy Foreskin, warden of the King's armor, etc. There were always distant relatives and loyal followers who needed to be rewarded. Bureaucracies were always corrupt and dysfunctional. When it took hundreds of years to build a cathedral it wasn't entirely because it was all hand labor. There were all sorts of guilds and no one was allowed to step on the other guild's turf. Funding was a problem before modern taxation and banking, etc.


    What really happened is that the US had one brief shining moment (OK a century) from say 1865 to 1965 when we were actually capable of getting shit done and now we have fallen back into the usual historical pattern. Remember that modern humans have been around for at least 50,000 years and for maybe 40,000 out of those 50,000 absolutely nothing got done.

    Replies: @Alden, @J.Ross, @Sparkon, @Peterike

    You’re right. One reason the cathedrals have lasted so long is that only qualified experts were allowed to do the work. A big delayer was funding. A cathedral is a status symbol and a luxury. There was a lot of fund raising totally separate from regular church revenues.

    Much of the building was really engineering and architectural research and development. The designers would want to do something splendid. But it couldn’t be done with existing technology. So it was delayed till some one figured out what to do. Bruneschilleni and the dome of Florence cathedral is an excellent example of this.

    Flying buttresses, arched round ceiling supports instead of straight rafters. The concepts often came first, technology second.

  48. From Thinking, Fast and Slow:

    The Planning Fallacy

    In light of both the outside-view forecast and the eventual outcome, the
    original estimates we made that Friday afternoon appear almost
    delusional. This should not come as a surprise: overly optimistic forecasts
    of the outcome of projects are found everywhere. Amos and I coined the
    term planning fallacy to describe plans and forecasts that
    are unrealistically close to best-case scenarios
    could be improved by consulting the statistics of similar cases.

    Examples of the planning fallacy abound in the experiences of
    individuals, governments, and businesses. The list of horror stories is
    endless:

    In July 1997, the proposed new Scottish Parliament building in Edinburgh was estimated to cost up to £40 million. By June 1999,
    the budget for the building was £109 million. InApril 2000, legislators
    imposed a £195 million “cap on costs.” By November 2001, they
    demanded an estimate of “final cost,” which was set at £241 million.
    That estimated final cost rose twice in 2002, ending the year at
    £294.6 million. It rose three times more in 2003, reaching £375.8 million by June. The building was finally comanspleted in 2004 at an
    ultimate cost of roughly £431 million. A 2005 study examined rail projects undertaken worldwide between
    1969 and 1998. In more than 90% of the cases, the number of
    passengers projected to use the system was overestimated.

    Even though these passenger shortfalls were widely publicized, forecasts
    did not improve over those thirty years; on average, planners
    overestimated how many people would use the new rail projects by
    106%, and the average cost overrun was 45%. As more evidence
    accumulated, the experts did not become more reliant on it.
    In 2002, a survey ofAmerican homeowners who had remodeled their
    kitchens found that, on average, they had expected the job to cost
    $18,658; in fact, they ended up paying an average of $38,769.

    The optimism of planners and decision makers is not the only cause of
    overruns. Contractors of kitchen renovations and of weapon systems
    readily admit (though not to their clients) that they routinely make most of
    their profit on additions to the original plan. The failures of forecasting in
    these cases reflect the customers’ inability to imagine how much their wishes will escalate over time. They end up paying much more than they would if they had made a realistic plan and stuck to it. Errors in the initial budget are not always innocent. The authors of
    unrealistic plans are often driven by the desire to get the plan approved—
    whether by their superiors or by a client—supported by the knowledge that
    projects are rarely abandoned unfinished merely because of overruns in
    costs or completion times. In such cases, the greatest responsibility for
    avoiding the planning fallacy lies with the decision makers who approve
    the plan. If they do not recognize the need for an outside view, they commit
    a planning fallacy.

  49. The Roman drains under York still work – it must be true, I saw it on the telly.

    One point of access is in the cellar of a pub. The telly people chucked in some dye and then their rowing boat out on the River Ouse spotted the dye emerging.

  50. Calif. has a relaxed performance standard of “get it basically right.” (I wonder where this came from.) A quant friend puts this at 85%. Thus, because >85% of the buses are not on fire, this does not bother California. PG&E got wire maintenance basically right. >85% of streets have no homeless encampments or feces. And so on. Contagious across occupations and geography. America 2.0, one poster on another thread called it. Get used to it.

  51. @Jack D
    Bah, NYC has you beat as usual:

    Construction on New York City Water Tunnel #3 began in 1970 (planning began in 1954) and is expected to be completed in 2020 according to this outdated wiki:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_City_Water_Tunnel_No._3

    However, Mayor DeBlasio has diverted the funding "to other projects" so now completion is scheduled for "some time in the 2020's".

    https://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/06/nyregion/de-blasio-postpones-work-on-crucial-water-tunnel.html

    The reason for all the "urgency" is that if something bad would happen to Tunnel #1 and #2 (say a collapse because they are 100 years old) half of NY would be without water. Because the tunnels are in use, there's no way to close them for inspection and all the original gate valves are corrode anyway:

    In 1954, unbeknownst to most residents of the city, several engineers went into a shaft to try to turn off the water supply in City Tunnel No. 1, to see if the tunnel needed repairs after being in operation for almost half a century. At the bottom of the shaft, sticking out of the tunnel, was a long bronze stem with a rotating wheel at the end. It was supposed to control the six-foot-diameter valve inside the pipeline. But when the engineers started to turn the handle, using all their might, it began to tremble and crack. “There was too much pressure on it,” Ward said.

    “They were afraid if they turned it any more the whole fucking thing would break,” Richard Fitzsimmons, Jr., the business manager of the sandhogs’ union, said.

     
    https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2003/09/01/city-of-water

    So an emergency replacement program was put in place due to this immediate crisis and a new tunnel was built in only 70 years. The end.

    I'm sure that there came a time in Rome when aqueduct repairs began to take longer and longer and finally "the whole fucking thing" broke and there was nobody left who knew how to repair it and anyway they no longer had the money and organizational skills to do it.

    Replies: @El Dato, @Reg Cæsar, @nebulafox, @Reg Cæsar, @R.G. Camara, @notsaying, @kaganovitch, @prosa123

    I remember reading that magazine article in the New Yorker quoted above more than 15 years ago. It was startling to realize that New York City ran the risk of going without water — with no backup plan — for years if something went wrong with one or both of their water tunnels.

    Now after years of having this enormous project on track to a final finish, De Blasio decided there were more important priorities and took money away from it. What would he do if one of the tunnels became inoperable? What could he do?

    This makes me think, oddly enough, of nuclear power. It keeps coming up as a solution in connection with replacing some of our carbon-based power that is causing global warming. But when you think of how poorly our officials and others in charge handle making decisions that involve risk management, trusting the lives and health of millions of people to safely live near lots more nuclear power plants is just too dangerous. And of course we have no safe way to dispose of the used fuel.

    I suspect it is just a human failing that when we don’t want to think about catastrophic disasters we downgrade their impact or even ignore them.

    We should try to minimize getting ourselves into situations where catastrophic disasters can occur, such as nuclear power plants — and nuclear weapons too.

    I hope nobody in New York City does anything further to delay their water tunnel #3 completion.

    • Replies: @SafeNow
    @notsaying

    “We should try to minimize getting ourselves into situations where catastrophic disasters can occur,...”

    Agreed. Admiral Nimitz’s concluding remarks regarding the disastrous drowning losses in the “Halsey Hurricane”: “It is foolish to be grudging about taking safety precautions for fear that the precautions might turn out to have been unnecessary... The time to take precautions is while still able to do so.”

    Replies: @Jim Don Bob

    , @Jack D
    @notsaying

    I agree with you about nuclear power. If the Japanese, who are the Westernized civilization perhaps least affected by Current Year vibrancy, could not manage this stuff safely, what hope is there for the New Woke America to do this? ( I have to say that the Japanese have their own structural/cultural flaws which impair their decision making, just different ones than us.)

    I suspect that the lack of urgency on the water tunnel is in part because it is not as dire as people make it out to be in the interest of getting funding for this multi-billion $ project (which probably has cost 10x what it should have cost). First of all , the older tunnels are bored straight thru bedrock in a non-seismic zone, so the risk of their collapse is remote. Probably 2,000 years from now when they (whoever they is) are exploring the ruins of out civilization, they will find these tunnels and water will still be pouring of them. 2nd, if something was to happen to one of the tunnels, the result would not be 4 million people with dry taps. Perhaps pressure would drop, perhaps there would be rotating shutoffs to various neighborhoods but they would find some way to quickly improvise a solution until the emergency repairs could be made.

    Replies: @notsaying, @Redneck farmer, @I Have Scinde

    , @David Davenport
    @notsaying

    This makes me think, oddly enough, of nuclear power. It keeps coming up as a solution in connection with replacing some of our carbon-based power that is causing global warming. But when you think of how poorly our officials and others in charge handle making decisions that involve risk management, trusting the lives and health of millions of people to safely live near lots more nuclear power plants is just too dangerous....

    //////////////

    Watts Bar Nuclear Plant

    With the addition of the first new commercial nuclear reactor brought online in the United States in the 21st century, Watts Bar now has the two newest nuclear units in the nation. Commercial operation of Watts Bar Unit 2 was declared in October 2016, while Unit 1 began operation in 1996.

    The plant is located on 1,700 acres on the northern end of the Chickamauga Reservoir near Spring City, in East Tennessee. Each unit produces about 1,150 megawatts of electricity—enough to service 650,000 homes—without creating any carbon emissions...

    https://www.tva.gov/Energy/Our-Power-System/Nuclear/Watts-Bar-Nuclear-Plant

  52. @nebulafox
    @Jack D

    DC makes them both look efficient. Only fitting.

    What more or less happened was that people did lose that knowledge, but the aqueducts still ran after 476. As long as nothing too disasterous happened, people could keep on living as they did under the Empire under late antiquity conditions. Essentially: living off the infastructure built in previous generations and not thinking about a day where they'd break and you'd need to know how to fix them. Sound familiar?

    But this being the real world with real things happening, something bad did eventually happen: the Gothic Wars. After which, the aqueducts broken during the fighting were never repaired. Partly, because there was no incentive with Rome's mass depopulation, but also partly because nobody knew how.

    (On a greater level, literacy declined in the Dark Ages not least because it wasn't perceived as necessary to attain a spot in the new aristocracy of decentralized, ruralized, militarized landlords. Much more important for your son to know how to handle a sword. This also happened in the surviving eastern remnant of the empire, albeit not nearly to the same extent. There were even occasional emperors who were illiterate.

    As another example, Constantinople's infamous walls, which broke the bodies and souls of many an invading army over the course of 1000 years, were built in late antiquity. It was one of the last great engineering achievements of the classical age of European civilization. A good thing they were there beforehand, though, because nobody would have had the resources to build them in the Dark Ages when the Sassanids and Arabs and Rus and all the rest came knocking...)

    Replies: @Alden, @S, @Anonymous

    If you’re interested in the so called dark ages check out the Justinian Plague, 500 to about 650. It was far worse than the later medieval great plagues. There was not much written about it because so many died. Historians estimate as much as 70-80% in many areas.

    That Plague devastated the Middle East to Armenia and the borders of west Asia and Europe, the old Roman Empire. The de population was a big reason why the S Arabs and Vikings were able to invade and conquer so easily.

    With no parents and teachers the surviving children grew up illiterate. The endless wars and invasions contributed of course.

    Check it out it’s a very important but largely unknown part of the history of the European people’s.

    • Replies: @nebulafox
    @Alden

    I think Warren Treadgold makes a convincing point that the plague was what really doomed late antiquity, all the moreso because no ruler could have expected it. That shows in policy decisions of Justinian's, especially concerning strategy in Italy when the Ostrogoths were at their breaking point early in the war. The plague also ravaged Sassanid Persia, which, when coupled with their ultimate defeat in the Great War and some unfortunate geography, led to wholesale conquest at the hands of the Arabs.

    The last major outbreak of plague in Constantinople took place early on in Constantine V's (underrated emperor-have a deep respect for him and his father, they helped keep the last remnant of European civilization going by the skin of their teeth during a very, very dark time in Western history) reign, which fortunately for the Romans happened to coincide with the downfall of the Umayyads. Apparently the city was so empty that to keep it-and thus the empire-going, he simply infused it wholesale with as many people in Greece he could find, including plenty of random Slavic migrants.

    Replies: @Alden

  53. @Jack D
    Bah, NYC has you beat as usual:

    Construction on New York City Water Tunnel #3 began in 1970 (planning began in 1954) and is expected to be completed in 2020 according to this outdated wiki:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_City_Water_Tunnel_No._3

    However, Mayor DeBlasio has diverted the funding "to other projects" so now completion is scheduled for "some time in the 2020's".

    https://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/06/nyregion/de-blasio-postpones-work-on-crucial-water-tunnel.html

    The reason for all the "urgency" is that if something bad would happen to Tunnel #1 and #2 (say a collapse because they are 100 years old) half of NY would be without water. Because the tunnels are in use, there's no way to close them for inspection and all the original gate valves are corrode anyway:

    In 1954, unbeknownst to most residents of the city, several engineers went into a shaft to try to turn off the water supply in City Tunnel No. 1, to see if the tunnel needed repairs after being in operation for almost half a century. At the bottom of the shaft, sticking out of the tunnel, was a long bronze stem with a rotating wheel at the end. It was supposed to control the six-foot-diameter valve inside the pipeline. But when the engineers started to turn the handle, using all their might, it began to tremble and crack. “There was too much pressure on it,” Ward said.

    “They were afraid if they turned it any more the whole fucking thing would break,” Richard Fitzsimmons, Jr., the business manager of the sandhogs’ union, said.

     
    https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2003/09/01/city-of-water

    So an emergency replacement program was put in place due to this immediate crisis and a new tunnel was built in only 70 years. The end.

    I'm sure that there came a time in Rome when aqueduct repairs began to take longer and longer and finally "the whole fucking thing" broke and there was nobody left who knew how to repair it and anyway they no longer had the money and organizational skills to do it.

    Replies: @El Dato, @Reg Cæsar, @nebulafox, @Reg Cæsar, @R.G. Camara, @notsaying, @kaganovitch, @prosa123

    And to think we missed out on just this sort of farsighted leadership when Wilhelm dropped out of the Presidential race. A tragedy , I tell you.

  54. @notsaying
    @Jack D

    I remember reading that magazine article in the New Yorker quoted above more than 15 years ago. It was startling to realize that New York City ran the risk of going without water -- with no backup plan -- for years if something went wrong with one or both of their water tunnels.

    Now after years of having this enormous project on track to a final finish, De Blasio decided there were more important priorities and took money away from it. What would he do if one of the tunnels became inoperable? What could he do?

    This makes me think, oddly enough, of nuclear power. It keeps coming up as a solution in connection with replacing some of our carbon-based power that is causing global warming. But when you think of how poorly our officials and others in charge handle making decisions that involve risk management, trusting the lives and health of millions of people to safely live near lots more nuclear power plants is just too dangerous. And of course we have no safe way to dispose of the used fuel.

    I suspect it is just a human failing that when we don't want to think about catastrophic disasters we downgrade their impact or even ignore them.

    We should try to minimize getting ourselves into situations where catastrophic disasters can occur, such as nuclear power plants -- and nuclear weapons too.

    I hope nobody in New York City does anything further to delay their water tunnel #3 completion.

    Replies: @SafeNow, @Jack D, @David Davenport

    “We should try to minimize getting ourselves into situations where catastrophic disasters can occur,…”

    Agreed. Admiral Nimitz’s concluding remarks regarding the disastrous drowning losses in the “Halsey Hurricane”: “It is foolish to be grudging about taking safety precautions for fear that the precautions might turn out to have been unnecessary… The time to take precautions is while still able to do so.”

    • Replies: @Jim Don Bob
    @SafeNow

    This is just one reason why today's navy has a class of ships named Nimitz, but none named Halsey. Bull was a good nickname for him.

  55. @Jack D
    @AnotherDad

    I'm sure that there were make-work jobs in the medieval Church and state - guardian of the Holy Foreskin, warden of the King's armor, etc. There were always distant relatives and loyal followers who needed to be rewarded. Bureaucracies were always corrupt and dysfunctional. When it took hundreds of years to build a cathedral it wasn't entirely because it was all hand labor. There were all sorts of guilds and no one was allowed to step on the other guild's turf. Funding was a problem before modern taxation and banking, etc.


    What really happened is that the US had one brief shining moment (OK a century) from say 1865 to 1965 when we were actually capable of getting shit done and now we have fallen back into the usual historical pattern. Remember that modern humans have been around for at least 50,000 years and for maybe 40,000 out of those 50,000 absolutely nothing got done.

    Replies: @Alden, @J.Ross, @Sparkon, @Peterike

    So building homesteads in savage-infested wilderness and whaling and working at enlightenment era trades and inventing modern science is nothing. Okay.

    • Replies: @Jack D
    @J.Ross

    Sure it was something but pre-Civil War very large scale projects were rare, as much for financial reasons as technological ones. The Eric Canal (built in only 8 years with government borrowing) was one but it was basically just a big long ditch with some locks.

  56. If FaceBorg is a Pentagon voluntary panopticon, is Instagram inefficient eugenics? Instagram Thots attempt to film video while driving: their video becomes a Michael Bay movie.

    Brianna Martinez, 23, was driving a Nissan Altima on Route 1 near Ford Avenue when the car struck the tractor-trailer as the truck was pulling away from a stoplight at around 11:50 p.m., according to Sergeant Philip Agosta of the Woodbridge Police.

    Mikayla Powell, 23, and Uchechukw Chukwuma*, 24, both passengers in the Nissan, were pronounced dead at the scene.

    Martinez was rushed to Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital where she died.

    “This is a tragic accident,” Sgt. Agosta said.

    https://nypost.com/2019/12/21/3-women-killed-after-car-rear-ends-tractor-trailer-in-new-jersey-crash/

    *Uchechukw Chukwuma — an anon asks, is that her name before or after the accident?

    • Replies: @Hippopotamusdrome
    @J.Ross



    Uchechukw Chukwuma

     

    His favorite band: Chumbawamba - Tubthumping (Official Video)

    Replies: @J.Ross

  57. @notsaying
    @Jack D

    I remember reading that magazine article in the New Yorker quoted above more than 15 years ago. It was startling to realize that New York City ran the risk of going without water -- with no backup plan -- for years if something went wrong with one or both of their water tunnels.

    Now after years of having this enormous project on track to a final finish, De Blasio decided there were more important priorities and took money away from it. What would he do if one of the tunnels became inoperable? What could he do?

    This makes me think, oddly enough, of nuclear power. It keeps coming up as a solution in connection with replacing some of our carbon-based power that is causing global warming. But when you think of how poorly our officials and others in charge handle making decisions that involve risk management, trusting the lives and health of millions of people to safely live near lots more nuclear power plants is just too dangerous. And of course we have no safe way to dispose of the used fuel.

    I suspect it is just a human failing that when we don't want to think about catastrophic disasters we downgrade their impact or even ignore them.

    We should try to minimize getting ourselves into situations where catastrophic disasters can occur, such as nuclear power plants -- and nuclear weapons too.

    I hope nobody in New York City does anything further to delay their water tunnel #3 completion.

    Replies: @SafeNow, @Jack D, @David Davenport

    I agree with you about nuclear power. If the Japanese, who are the Westernized civilization perhaps least affected by Current Year vibrancy, could not manage this stuff safely, what hope is there for the New Woke America to do this? ( I have to say that the Japanese have their own structural/cultural flaws which impair their decision making, just different ones than us.)

    I suspect that the lack of urgency on the water tunnel is in part because it is not as dire as people make it out to be in the interest of getting funding for this multi-billion $ project (which probably has cost 10x what it should have cost). First of all , the older tunnels are bored straight thru bedrock in a non-seismic zone, so the risk of their collapse is remote. Probably 2,000 years from now when they (whoever they is) are exploring the ruins of out civilization, they will find these tunnels and water will still be pouring of them. 2nd, if something was to happen to one of the tunnels, the result would not be 4 million people with dry taps. Perhaps pressure would drop, perhaps there would be rotating shutoffs to various neighborhoods but they would find some way to quickly improvise a solution until the emergency repairs could be made.

    • Agree: Johann Ricke
    • Replies: @notsaying
    @Jack D

    I do not think there's any kind of fix. That's what I recall from the New Yorker article.

    , @Redneck farmer
    @Jack D

    So Billy Joel should have named the song Miami 4017?

    , @I Have Scinde
    @Jack D

    "I agree with you about nuclear power. If the Japanese, who are the Westernized civilization perhaps least affected by Current Year vibrancy, could not manage this stuff safely, what hope is there for the New Woke America to do this? ( I have to say that the Japanese have their own structural/cultural flaws which impair their decision making, just different ones than us.)"

    My God, the misunderstanding of nuclear power is astounding.

    The Japanese had a mishandling of nuclear power on a tsunami that killed >10,000 people. A massive, tragic, natural disaster, that utterly destroyed several built-in layers of safety mechanisms. How many people died due to the nuclear emergency that followed? If you're generous in attributing deaths to it, one person died as a result of the nuclear meltdown. If you're not generous - zero. How many people die in other types of electrical generating plants? How could anyone with a straight face claim it is not managed safely with that impressive display? If a coal or natural gas plant destroyed by a tsunami had resulted in one death eight years later, would you consider such a plant hazardous and unfit for Woke or diverse populations?

    Let me tell you this, as well. Almost all nuclear reactors in the U.S. are watched over by college dropouts or people who never went to college. And the U.S. have had zero civilian nuclear deaths, and only one military (a misguided attempt by the U.S. Army, of all things). If they can keep nuclear energy safe, just about anyone can.

    Mr. D, I highly recommend you stick to matters legal. Random unsubstantiated declarations of who is capable to "safely" operate nuclear power are clearly not your forte.

    Replies: @Justvisiting, @Sparkon, @Jack D, @notsaying

  58. @Jack D
    @notsaying

    I agree with you about nuclear power. If the Japanese, who are the Westernized civilization perhaps least affected by Current Year vibrancy, could not manage this stuff safely, what hope is there for the New Woke America to do this? ( I have to say that the Japanese have their own structural/cultural flaws which impair their decision making, just different ones than us.)

    I suspect that the lack of urgency on the water tunnel is in part because it is not as dire as people make it out to be in the interest of getting funding for this multi-billion $ project (which probably has cost 10x what it should have cost). First of all , the older tunnels are bored straight thru bedrock in a non-seismic zone, so the risk of their collapse is remote. Probably 2,000 years from now when they (whoever they is) are exploring the ruins of out civilization, they will find these tunnels and water will still be pouring of them. 2nd, if something was to happen to one of the tunnels, the result would not be 4 million people with dry taps. Perhaps pressure would drop, perhaps there would be rotating shutoffs to various neighborhoods but they would find some way to quickly improvise a solution until the emergency repairs could be made.

    Replies: @notsaying, @Redneck farmer, @I Have Scinde

    I do not think there’s any kind of fix. That’s what I recall from the New Yorker article.

  59. @Reg Cæsar
    @Jack D

    Aqua Virgo: the only still functioning Roman Aqueduct of the Roman Empire


    http://storytrail.co/s3/uploads/video/poster/97/video_97_14628684164853914_poster.jpg

    Replies: @Lot

    I just looked into this for the same reason, to see if any Roman aqueducts are still being used as they were built for. I vaguely remember learning in school this was the case, but turns out not really.

    Virgo was used for about 500 years, then restored after 1000 years of disuse. Now used for multiple fountains and landscape watering.

    In terms of continuous use without major restorations, it doesn’t look like any Roman aqueducts qualify other than perhaps the first section of one in Spain.

    http://www.romanaqueducts.info/q&a/11stillinuse.htm

    • Replies: @Known Fact
    @Lot

    Calling Ozone Park NY's dreary racetrack "Aqueduct" has never ceased to puzzle and amuse me

  60. @MEH 0910

    Tonight I noticed that the LADWP is still working in a trench on the same street at Magnolia Blvd. (see Paul Thomas Anderson’s movie) about a mile or two away, a mere 11 years and 2 months after they started.
     
    Bad Sneakers
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MiBfhFvJdvc

    I can see the ladies talking
    How the times are getting hard
    And that fearsome excavation
    On Magnolia Boulevard
     

    You fellah, you tearin' up the street
    You wear that white tuxedo
    How you gonna beat the heat
    Do you take me for a fool
    Do you think that I don't see
    That ditch out in the valley
    That they're digging just for me
     

    Replies: @Anonymous

    Steely Dan is up-to-date again

  61. @AnotherDad
    Alfa158 nails the "i've got mine" comfy sinecure in our balkanized diversitopia aspect of this phenomenon:

    In a fragmented, low social trust society it is all about taking care of yourself. The primary output of the system is well paying, good benefit, low stress, secure jobs with nice pensions at the end.
     
    A couple of related factors:

    -- Massive increase in white-collar, "professional" parasites--lawyers, consultatants, planners, activists--glommed onto everything.

    -- Feminization of society, culture, institutions. Loss of male--"just do it"--mentality.

    This--diversity, bureaucracy, parasitism, feminization--all dovetail and reinforce the "can't do shit" atmosphere of our age.

    Replies: @Alden, @Clyde

    Dittos on the feminization of society.

  62. Interstate 29 in Sioux City has been under heavy construction since 2008. They claim the project is almost completed, local residents will believe it when they see it. To add injury to insult Sioux City put in extremely unpopular speed trap cameras along this stretch around the same to construction started. This isn’t unique to California.

    https://www.kcrg.com/content/news/After-11-years-of-road-work-freeway-project-in-Sioux-City-nearly-over-565698482.html

  63. @Jack D
    Bah, NYC has you beat as usual:

    Construction on New York City Water Tunnel #3 began in 1970 (planning began in 1954) and is expected to be completed in 2020 according to this outdated wiki:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_City_Water_Tunnel_No._3

    However, Mayor DeBlasio has diverted the funding "to other projects" so now completion is scheduled for "some time in the 2020's".

    https://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/06/nyregion/de-blasio-postpones-work-on-crucial-water-tunnel.html

    The reason for all the "urgency" is that if something bad would happen to Tunnel #1 and #2 (say a collapse because they are 100 years old) half of NY would be without water. Because the tunnels are in use, there's no way to close them for inspection and all the original gate valves are corrode anyway:

    In 1954, unbeknownst to most residents of the city, several engineers went into a shaft to try to turn off the water supply in City Tunnel No. 1, to see if the tunnel needed repairs after being in operation for almost half a century. At the bottom of the shaft, sticking out of the tunnel, was a long bronze stem with a rotating wheel at the end. It was supposed to control the six-foot-diameter valve inside the pipeline. But when the engineers started to turn the handle, using all their might, it began to tremble and crack. “There was too much pressure on it,” Ward said.

    “They were afraid if they turned it any more the whole fucking thing would break,” Richard Fitzsimmons, Jr., the business manager of the sandhogs’ union, said.

     
    https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2003/09/01/city-of-water

    So an emergency replacement program was put in place due to this immediate crisis and a new tunnel was built in only 70 years. The end.

    I'm sure that there came a time in Rome when aqueduct repairs began to take longer and longer and finally "the whole fucking thing" broke and there was nobody left who knew how to repair it and anyway they no longer had the money and organizational skills to do it.

    Replies: @El Dato, @Reg Cæsar, @nebulafox, @Reg Cæsar, @R.G. Camara, @notsaying, @kaganovitch, @prosa123

    On a far smaller scale but of a rather ludicrous nature there’s New York’s ongoing sewer fiasco. Hundreds of homeowners north of Kennedy airport were horrified to find raw sewage in their basements, often several inches deep and with the stench rendering the houses nearly unliveable. The city admitted that a backed-up sewage pipe was the culprit, but said it was the fault of local residents for pouring cooking grease down sink drains – a physically impossible explanation. Finally, after massive criticism, city officials reluctantly admitted that cooking grease wasn’t the culprit, which they knew all along, it actually was an old pipe that had collapsed.

  64. @iffen
    Arson? Sabotage?

    Replies: @Barnard, @Cucksworth, @Jim Don Bob, @SunBakedSuburb, @Pop Warner, @Known Fact

    Operator error, ese

  65. @nebulafox
    @Jack D

    DC makes them both look efficient. Only fitting.

    What more or less happened was that people did lose that knowledge, but the aqueducts still ran after 476. As long as nothing too disasterous happened, people could keep on living as they did under the Empire under late antiquity conditions. Essentially: living off the infastructure built in previous generations and not thinking about a day where they'd break and you'd need to know how to fix them. Sound familiar?

    But this being the real world with real things happening, something bad did eventually happen: the Gothic Wars. After which, the aqueducts broken during the fighting were never repaired. Partly, because there was no incentive with Rome's mass depopulation, but also partly because nobody knew how.

    (On a greater level, literacy declined in the Dark Ages not least because it wasn't perceived as necessary to attain a spot in the new aristocracy of decentralized, ruralized, militarized landlords. Much more important for your son to know how to handle a sword. This also happened in the surviving eastern remnant of the empire, albeit not nearly to the same extent. There were even occasional emperors who were illiterate.

    As another example, Constantinople's infamous walls, which broke the bodies and souls of many an invading army over the course of 1000 years, were built in late antiquity. It was one of the last great engineering achievements of the classical age of European civilization. A good thing they were there beforehand, though, because nobody would have had the resources to build them in the Dark Ages when the Sassanids and Arabs and Rus and all the rest came knocking...)

    Replies: @Alden, @S, @Anonymous

    What more or less happened was that people did lose that knowledge, but the aqueducts still ran after 476. As long as nothing too disasterous happened, people could keep on living as they did under the Empire under late antiquity conditions.

    Similarly, after the Fall of the West, people continued to use imperial coinage. However, due to wear, new coins would still have to be minted.

    These were in many instances copies of the old Roman coins, with the caveat that as the barbarians who minted them were often themselves quite illiterate the ‘writing’ on them was in a great many instances simply meaningless wavy lines that only looked like actual writing from a distance.

    They knew official and real Roman coins were supposed to have this thing called writing on them, so they did the best they knew how to continue the tradition.

    These are called ‘barbarous imitation’ coins.

    [Remindful in a somewhat disturbing way of that movie called ‘Idiocracy.’]

    • Replies: @Hippopotamusdrome
    @S



    These are called ‘barbarous imitation’ coins.

     

    Ancient coins are fake and gay.

    "Fairy Tales for the Penguins" [about coins, not penguins]
    , @Seneca44
    @S

    I thought "Idiocracy" was a comedy when I saw it over a decade ago. Who knew that it was a documentary of the future?

  66. @Jack D
    @AnotherDad

    I'm sure that there were make-work jobs in the medieval Church and state - guardian of the Holy Foreskin, warden of the King's armor, etc. There were always distant relatives and loyal followers who needed to be rewarded. Bureaucracies were always corrupt and dysfunctional. When it took hundreds of years to build a cathedral it wasn't entirely because it was all hand labor. There were all sorts of guilds and no one was allowed to step on the other guild's turf. Funding was a problem before modern taxation and banking, etc.


    What really happened is that the US had one brief shining moment (OK a century) from say 1865 to 1965 when we were actually capable of getting shit done and now we have fallen back into the usual historical pattern. Remember that modern humans have been around for at least 50,000 years and for maybe 40,000 out of those 50,000 absolutely nothing got done.

    Replies: @Alden, @J.Ross, @Sparkon, @Peterike

    Remember that modern humans have been around for at least 50,000 years and for maybe 40,000 out of those 50,000 absolutely nothing got done.

    Not exactly. Don’t forget or overlook cave paintings dating from up to 40,000 years ago in Indonesia, Spain, Russia, and France, among others. During that time, I suggest our spoken language was developing slowly but surely, along with human culture, until the time when men learned to make their marks as components of a written language about 5,100 years ago, which is just the blink of an eye in geologic terms. Before that, most human knowledge was passed on by word of mouth, which would have been a slow and uncertain process. Nevertheless, however long it took for their development, obviously Sumerian and Akkadian were fully developed languages before they were ever written down.

  67. @Jack D
    @notsaying

    I agree with you about nuclear power. If the Japanese, who are the Westernized civilization perhaps least affected by Current Year vibrancy, could not manage this stuff safely, what hope is there for the New Woke America to do this? ( I have to say that the Japanese have their own structural/cultural flaws which impair their decision making, just different ones than us.)

    I suspect that the lack of urgency on the water tunnel is in part because it is not as dire as people make it out to be in the interest of getting funding for this multi-billion $ project (which probably has cost 10x what it should have cost). First of all , the older tunnels are bored straight thru bedrock in a non-seismic zone, so the risk of their collapse is remote. Probably 2,000 years from now when they (whoever they is) are exploring the ruins of out civilization, they will find these tunnels and water will still be pouring of them. 2nd, if something was to happen to one of the tunnels, the result would not be 4 million people with dry taps. Perhaps pressure would drop, perhaps there would be rotating shutoffs to various neighborhoods but they would find some way to quickly improvise a solution until the emergency repairs could be made.

    Replies: @notsaying, @Redneck farmer, @I Have Scinde

    So Billy Joel should have named the song Miami 4017?

  68. @Alden
    @nebulafox

    If you’re interested in the so called dark ages check out the Justinian Plague, 500 to about 650. It was far worse than the later medieval great plagues. There was not much written about it because so many died. Historians estimate as much as 70-80% in many areas.

    That Plague devastated the Middle East to Armenia and the borders of west Asia and Europe, the old Roman Empire. The de population was a big reason why the S Arabs and Vikings were able to invade and conquer so easily.

    With no parents and teachers the surviving children grew up illiterate. The endless wars and invasions contributed of course.

    Check it out it’s a very important but largely unknown part of the history of the European people’s.

    Replies: @nebulafox

    I think Warren Treadgold makes a convincing point that the plague was what really doomed late antiquity, all the moreso because no ruler could have expected it. That shows in policy decisions of Justinian’s, especially concerning strategy in Italy when the Ostrogoths were at their breaking point early in the war. The plague also ravaged Sassanid Persia, which, when coupled with their ultimate defeat in the Great War and some unfortunate geography, led to wholesale conquest at the hands of the Arabs.

    The last major outbreak of plague in Constantinople took place early on in Constantine V’s (underrated emperor-have a deep respect for him and his father, they helped keep the last remnant of European civilization going by the skin of their teeth during a very, very dark time in Western history) reign, which fortunately for the Romans happened to coincide with the downfall of the Umayyads. Apparently the city was so empty that to keep it-and thus the empire-going, he simply infused it wholesale with as many people in Greece he could find, including plenty of random Slavic migrants.

    • Replies: @Alden
    @nebulafox

    You really know the history of that era. Thanks for the information.

  69. @Ano
    Sounds like the day your water main will be finished will be the day when we've won the war in Afghanistan.

    Meanwhile, do Angelinos draw the water out the trench with a shaduf (like the Ancient Egyptians), or are you people there more advanced, and you use an Archimedes Screw?

    LA: If the typhus at City Hall don't getcha, the cholera in Magnolia Blvd will.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer

    William Mulholland’s 1914 water main still works, so other than a few spectacular leaks now and then, the water situation at present is okay. The new one is intended to survive the next Big One, which Mulholland’s might not. It would be nice if they got the new one done before the Big One hits…

    • Replies: @Ano
    @Steve Sailer

    Thank you for your reply, but I have to ask what's the good of a big-one-proof water main if by California neglecting infrastructure maintenance of dams, the latter potentially aren't?

    I refer to your analysis and commentaries re: Oroville....and dam failures in general...

    https://www.takimag.com/article/undocumented_irrigation_steve_sailer/

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/what-a-dam-collapse-looks-like/

  70. And then last night, December 21st, one of the busiest travel days of the year…

    Years in the travel business taught me that set-day holidays (eg, Thanksgiving and Labor Day) are very predictable, while set-date ones (Christmas, Independence Day) vary depending on which day of the week it falls.

    In the air travel business, you get straight time on the nastiest days of the year (usually T-Day – 1 is the worst), and time-and-a-half on the slowest. However, Thanksgiving and Christmas mornings can still be moderately busy, due to last-chance, last-minute travelers.

    Christmas means nothing to Moslems, so they are more than happy to come in for the extra pay. T-Day and Fourth shifts attract other immigrants who haven’t grown up with those days off.

    • Replies: @Buzz Mohawk
    @Reg Cæsar


    Christmas means nothing to Moslems, so they are more than happy to come in for the extra pay.
     
    One Christmas Day I had to fly from New York City to Los Angeles for an emergency. (My sister was dying and I got the call the day before.) My area of the plane was filled with Hasidic Jews.
  71. @El Dato
    @Jack D

    Cascading failure in a complex system based on a large number of dependencies, you say?

    This kind of problem can be seen regularly in IT.

    Programs that we are told to not touch because it's basically expensive to perform the analysis and rebuild it from scratch, and no-one would stump up the money anyway when its more profitable to rewrite the user interface in AnalScript or whatever is modern right now and pretend it does "AI".

    Would you rather have another Holocaust museum rather than a reliable water supply?

    Exactly.

    Replies: @Anonymous

    Would you rather have another Holocaust museum rather than a reliable water supply?

    The Holocaust museum is more important because of the existential threat that the European people pose to Jews.

    • LOL: Dan Hayes
  72. @anon
    O/T...

    Saw this the other day. The conservative kids are waking up to the Sailer Strategy, and they are approaching it with race realism and without the baggage of dumb libertarian bullshit.

    It's kind of embarrassing when a 22 year-old can articulate a more coherent political strategy than all of the conservative brain trust combined.

    Highly recommended from a Gen Xer

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qzUbYXqpUJU

    Replies: @Danindc

    That kid is smart, brave and charismatic. I have been a fan since the beginning. He is our last best hope.

    • Replies: @Justvisiting
    @Danindc

    Great comments by the kid.

    The big issue that remains that is not in the quadrant at all is high trust/low trust.

    If average folks believe they live in a low trust society (regardless of whether they are correct or not) they will game any system until it bleeds out....

    Establishing trust has to be the first priority--that will have to be _earned_ by the politicians, by the mass media, by corporations, by non-profits, by religious institutions. Horrendous damage has been done by a generation of sociopaths who rule these institutions.

    Establishing trust may take generations, or may never happen at all.

  73. Here is a really funny example of California infra gone crazy due to white liberals running it, this is a bridge over nothing and connecting nothing right now, eventually the so called HSR was supposed to go over it I suppose. This picture is taken while driving slightly north of Fresno on CA 99 which was full of potholes this summer, this is not a joke!
    Couple of years down the road I fully imagine that this orphan bridge will be the roof for more homeless and drug addict people.

    • Replies: @Mr. Anon
    @indocon

    California has a long history of this. The San Jose "Freeway to Nowhere", from 1976:

    https://www.mercurynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/20131016__joecolla1.jpg?w=600

    Known at the time as the Governor Jerry Brown memorial Interchange.

    Replies: @Old Palo Altan

    , @indocon
    @indocon

    Very interesting, did not know that before. You can see Jerry Brown's wrench in the wheel of CA's progress showed up as back as 1976. Good thing that this interchange was finally completed, it is used by tens of thousands of commuters today.

  74. @Alden
    My LA neighborhood is built on sand. Which means the sidewalks sometimes cave in when it rains and the underlying sand washes away into the gutter.

    There’s a section of sidewalk a block from me that caved in during the last rain in April. I called it in directly to the sidewalk repair people. Next day a sawhorse covered the hole. Sounds good no?

    8 months later the hole’s still there. The sawhorse disappeared but the orange cone’s still there.

    Replies: @Anonymous

    My LA neighborhood is built on sand. Which means the sidewalks sometimes cave in when it rains and the underlying sand washes away into the gutter.

    How well does a sand foundation absorb earthquakes, compared to other foundations?

    • Replies: @Jack D
    @Anonymous

    Poorly. During earthquakes sand tends to turn to quicksand - the vibration turns the sand from a solid to a liquid and everything on top sinks into the liquid.

    , @Alden
    @Anonymous

    If there is an earthquake, it will be bad. Solid clay is most earthquake resistant. Many coastal areas are just a few inches of soil on sand.

  75. Anonymous[427] • Disclaimer says:
    @nebulafox
    @Jack D

    DC makes them both look efficient. Only fitting.

    What more or less happened was that people did lose that knowledge, but the aqueducts still ran after 476. As long as nothing too disasterous happened, people could keep on living as they did under the Empire under late antiquity conditions. Essentially: living off the infastructure built in previous generations and not thinking about a day where they'd break and you'd need to know how to fix them. Sound familiar?

    But this being the real world with real things happening, something bad did eventually happen: the Gothic Wars. After which, the aqueducts broken during the fighting were never repaired. Partly, because there was no incentive with Rome's mass depopulation, but also partly because nobody knew how.

    (On a greater level, literacy declined in the Dark Ages not least because it wasn't perceived as necessary to attain a spot in the new aristocracy of decentralized, ruralized, militarized landlords. Much more important for your son to know how to handle a sword. This also happened in the surviving eastern remnant of the empire, albeit not nearly to the same extent. There were even occasional emperors who were illiterate.

    As another example, Constantinople's infamous walls, which broke the bodies and souls of many an invading army over the course of 1000 years, were built in late antiquity. It was one of the last great engineering achievements of the classical age of European civilization. A good thing they were there beforehand, though, because nobody would have had the resources to build them in the Dark Ages when the Sassanids and Arabs and Rus and all the rest came knocking...)

    Replies: @Alden, @S, @Anonymous

    It’s a fascinating phenomenon to observe that a great many things that were once manufactured cannot be feasibly made any longer. The knowledge of how to do it has been lost and the infrastructure and supply chain of necessary materials is lost, and restarting the machine becomes orders of magnitude too expensive.

    I was involved in high end audio for a while and built several vacuum tube amps , preamps, FM tuner back ends, et al. Everyone always asked “but, where do you get the tubes?” At that time there were still feasible supply line to make new ones that were any good. But the market for new good tubes was just not quite big enough, and end users often willfully ignorant and would buy poorly made ones, and the supply line is now kaput. All the Litton machinery was bought up by the Chinese or by Ripoffchardson in LaFox, Illinois, and the cathode materials are no longer available. You can get something from Mallinckrodt that will sort of work, but not perform like the correct materials.

    You can still build “a tube”: artisinal manufacture of 1915 tech tubes is in fact a thing now, done by one transvestite character

    who has some interesting content on YouTube (you can not make this stuff up!) , and high power large transmitting tubes are still a very feasible business, as are TWTs, photomultipliers, etc., but a good 6550….spoiled contractors say they can but at >$200 apiece in 1K quantity.

    Vacuum tube circuits also require transformers and again, good luck getting good ones any more. Yes, it can be done but is a lot of work and many of the best ones are simply not reproducible. The very best were the product of one man who died decades ago and deliberately took as much of the technique to the grave as he could. A dumpster diver soyboy in Philadelphia saved a lot of the documents but the docs are wrong in a lot of cases, either on purpose or just revised in the engineering> production loop and corrections passed down orally or in other paperwork which is now lost.

    Aircraft are lucky in one sense; the FAA requires a lot of data that is generally carefully warehoused and when the companies go broke you can sometimes get the data from those archives, but rarely in immense detail needed to actually start production.

    But in general, foundry practices and even some types of machining have deteriorated in terms of what’s feasibly done in many cases. You’d think anything that could be done on paper tape controlled hard tooling could be done with 5 axis CNC, but in some cases, not so.

  76. Welcome to the Third World!

  77. @SafeNow
    @notsaying

    “We should try to minimize getting ourselves into situations where catastrophic disasters can occur,...”

    Agreed. Admiral Nimitz’s concluding remarks regarding the disastrous drowning losses in the “Halsey Hurricane”: “It is foolish to be grudging about taking safety precautions for fear that the precautions might turn out to have been unnecessary... The time to take precautions is while still able to do so.”

    Replies: @Jim Don Bob

    This is just one reason why today’s navy has a class of ships named Nimitz, but none named Halsey. Bull was a good nickname for him.

  78. @J.Ross
    If FaceBorg is a Pentagon voluntary panopticon, is Instagram inefficient eugenics? Instagram Thots attempt to film video while driving: their video becomes a Michael Bay movie.

    Brianna Martinez, 23, was driving a Nissan Altima on Route 1 near Ford Avenue when the car struck the tractor-trailer as the truck was pulling away from a stoplight at around 11:50 p.m., according to Sergeant Philip Agosta of the Woodbridge Police.

    Mikayla Powell, 23, and Uchechukw Chukwuma*, 24, both passengers in the Nissan, were pronounced dead at the scene.

    Martinez was rushed to Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital where she died.

    “This is a tragic accident,” Sgt. Agosta said.
     
    https://nypost.com/2019/12/21/3-women-killed-after-car-rear-ends-tractor-trailer-in-new-jersey-crash/

    *Uchechukw Chukwuma -- an anon asks, is that her name before or after the accident?

    Replies: @Hippopotamusdrome

    Uchechukw Chukwuma

    His favorite band: Chumbawamba – Tubthumping (Official Video)

    • Replies: @J.Ross
    @Hippopotamusdrome

    They're actually really interesting. They're hard lefties, and true believers in every tried and failed nonsense, but they write the most literate and interesting liner notes in pop music (it helps that they're really pseudo-academics pretending to be pop stars), their worst stuff is often at least experimental, and some of their music is both good and historically interesting. They have an album of old English rebel music going back to the Diggers. I really like Salt Fare North Sea, which is about the utterly joyless life of a North Sea sailor (cf The World At War with Lawrence Olivier, I forget which episode, but they couldn't even expect dry bedsheets), and inspired by Churchill squashing a rescue effort during WWII because it might have given away the "rescue" of Norway's King Haakon. Also Amnesia, which is about voting for a party that betrays you, and is therefore perfectly applicable across the ideological spectrum.

    Replies: @John Johnson, @notsaying

  79. @Jack D
    @AnotherDad

    I'm sure that there were make-work jobs in the medieval Church and state - guardian of the Holy Foreskin, warden of the King's armor, etc. There were always distant relatives and loyal followers who needed to be rewarded. Bureaucracies were always corrupt and dysfunctional. When it took hundreds of years to build a cathedral it wasn't entirely because it was all hand labor. There were all sorts of guilds and no one was allowed to step on the other guild's turf. Funding was a problem before modern taxation and banking, etc.


    What really happened is that the US had one brief shining moment (OK a century) from say 1865 to 1965 when we were actually capable of getting shit done and now we have fallen back into the usual historical pattern. Remember that modern humans have been around for at least 50,000 years and for maybe 40,000 out of those 50,000 absolutely nothing got done.

    Replies: @Alden, @J.Ross, @Sparkon, @Peterike

    “I’m sure that there were make-work jobs in the medieval Church and state – guardian of the Holy Foreskin”

    Mocking condescension isn’t the way to make friends across the aisle. Ok, Super Jew?

    • Replies: @anon
    @Peterike


    guardian of the Holy Foreskin
     
    That whole mohel infant penis thing? wrong wrong wrong.
    , @Mr. Anon
    @Peterike

    He really can't hide his contempt, can he? Not even a little.

  80. @Reg Cæsar

    And then last night, December 21st, one of the busiest travel days of the year...
     
    Years in the travel business taught me that set-day holidays (eg, Thanksgiving and Labor Day) are very predictable, while set-date ones (Christmas, Independence Day) vary depending on which day of the week it falls.

    In the air travel business, you get straight time on the nastiest days of the year (usually T-Day - 1 is the worst), and time-and-a-half on the slowest. However, Thanksgiving and Christmas mornings can still be moderately busy, due to last-chance, last-minute travelers.

    Christmas means nothing to Moslems, so they are more than happy to come in for the extra pay. T-Day and Fourth shifts attract other immigrants who haven't grown up with those days off.

    Replies: @Buzz Mohawk

    Christmas means nothing to Moslems, so they are more than happy to come in for the extra pay.

    One Christmas Day I had to fly from New York City to Los Angeles for an emergency. (My sister was dying and I got the call the day before.) My area of the plane was filled with Hasidic Jews.

  81. What boggles my mind about LAX is they don’t have a people mover tram, but force everyone to use the same hyper-congested street loop all traffic has to use just to get from one part of the airport to another. The horseshoe layout of the terminals and the offsite locations of the rental car lots, parking lots, etc., would make a people mover a natural fit. It’s a solution that airports with less than half the annual passenger traffic of LAX have figured out. Supposedly LAX is supposed to have a tram by 2023, knock on wood. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terminals_of_Los_Angeles_International_Airport#LAX_Train)

    I left California years ago, and generally avoid LAX like the plague now in favor of Long Beach for trips to the LA area. I made the mistake earlier this year of giving LAX one more chance, figuring I’d save an hour on the freeway on the way to a wedding in Santa Barbara. At best, I wound up giving that hour back just getting to the rental car lot and dealing with the wait there.

    • Replies: @Stan Adams
    @Thomas

    LAX is an unholy Frankenstein of an airport. Most of the original '60s buildings are still there, buried under decades' worth of piecemeal additions and superficial facelifts.

    From the early '60s to the early '80s, all of the terminals at LAX were one-story structures - the ticket counters and the baggage carousels were on the same floor of the same building. Both arriving and departing passengers used the same one-level roadway. The oval-shaped aircraft-boarding areas were connected to the main terminal buildings by underground tunnels:
    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/08/f5/0b/08f50ba56c78bb854b8417068a07d9c6.jpg

    The upper levels were literally grafted on to the existing airport facilities in the '80s. The roadway was double-decked, the terminal buildings were triple-storied (first-floor arrivals, second-floor departures, third-floor security checkpoints), and above-ground concourses were built to allow (relatively) easier access to the gates for departing passengers.

    The above picture was taken around 1962. Here's a map from 1984. The ovals are still present, but they have now sprouted unwieldy add-ons:
    https://live.staticflickr.com/1610/24328157255_929c21f79d_b.jpg

    Terminal 1 and the Tom Bradley International Terminal opened in the months leading up to the '84 Games.

    And now an aerial from 2019. Of the original six ovals, five are still discernible. Only Terminal 2 has been replaced outright:
    https://www.discoverlosangeles.com/sites/default/files/styles/hero/public/images/2019-01/LAX%20Aerial%20View.jpg

    The third-floor security-checkpoint areas were adequate in the '80s. Today they're a bottleneck.

    Before 9/11, airport security was pretty easy to deal with. Some airports restricted airside access to ticketed passengers only; some let anyone go through. You emptied your pockets into a basket, put your carry-on bag on the conveyor belt, and walked through the scanner. Sometimes the machine would beep and a rent-a-cop would give you a cursory once-over with a hand scanner. Then you would retrieve your pocket change, grab your bag, and hustle over to the gate. The whole process took no more than thirty seconds.

    Here is a video from 1995 showing "beefed-up security" at the Miami airport. Note the lack of congestion around the checkpoints:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4l8WwG7iNAA#t=0m40s

    Like LAX, MIA dates from the earliest epoch of the jet era and all of its newer construction has been bolted onto the older structures. There are parts of MIA where you walk on terrazzo flooring that was installed in 1959. In the oldest part of the airport, most of the ancient ticket counters have been replaced, along with the terrazzo flooring adjacent to the counters, but no effort has been made to match the newer flooring with the older one. A sharp line in the floor separates the old sickly-yellowish terrazzo from the new bright-white one. It looks awful. But that part of the terminal services only a few budget airlines, so no one cares.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer

  82. @unit472
    Given the same rules, regulations and mind set of today I doubt the Golden Gate Bridge could have even been built. If somehow, approval had been obtained it wouldn't have been completed until sometime in the Eisenhower Administration.

    Replies: @Clifford Brown, @Brad Anbro

    Counterpoint: The Eastern section of the Bay Bridge replacement took about ten years to complete and is actually a rare example of an improvement in infrastructure. In fairness, the original Bay Bridge was kind of homely (reminded me of New Jersey) so it was not that difficult to improve upon.

    It’s an amazing bridge. Even the artsy fartsy lighting scheme is inspiring.

  83. @Thucydides
    There is a saying among union workers on such jobs; when anyone is seen to be doing very much, the word is "don't kill the job," that is, whatever you do, don't finish it so the rich paychecks can continue.
    By way of contrast, Hoover Dam was built in 5 years (1930 - 1935), and the contractor finished two years ahead of time and millions of dollars under budget.

    The country has changed.

    Replies: @International Jew

    millions of dollars under budget

    Millions, pfft. Millions would be rounding error on a project like that today.

  84. @RichardTaylor
    California is a case study on mass immigration given how nice it was just a few decades ago and where it's now destined. I assume its past will be Memory Holed.

    Where did most of the settlers of California come from in the 1800s during and after the Gold Rush? I've heard there were a lot from the MidWest and the South but I have no idea.

    Replies: @David Davenport, @I Have Scinde

    Where did most of the settlers of California come from in the 1800s during and after the Gold Rush? I’ve heard there were a lot from the MidWest and the South but I have no idea.

    Regarding American westward re-settlement during the 19th Century: I think the general tendency was to move from east of the Mississippi to west along lines of latitude. Los Angeles, which was much smaller than San Francisco in the 1900’s, had a reputation for drawing new citizens from former Confederate states. Some of their descendants voted for Californians Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan for President.

    I’ve needled Steve about this in the past — what one might call D. W. Griffith’s Southern California* — but our host doesn’t seem interested.

    * For example, the Ku Klux Klan, more accurately labeled the second Klan — was active and rather popular in Los Angeles in the 1920’s.

    • Agree: RichardTaylor
    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    @David Davenport

    Los Angeles is surprisingly football-oriented in part because there is a rail line from East Texas and Arkansas where they really love football. So a lot of sharecroppers came out to L.A. in the first half of the 20th Century and brought their football passion with them.

    Replies: @A123

    , @RichardTaylor
    @David Davenport


    I think the general tendency was to move from east of the Mississippi to west along lines of latitude. Los Angeles, which was much smaller than San Francisco in the 1900’s, had a reputation for drawing new citizens from former Confederate states.
     
    Ah, so that's why the Beach boys were singing about beautiful blonde girls in Southern California. Although, I guess they came from all over once Hollywood was established.
    , @Flip
    @David Davenport

    I've always read that LA was settled by Midwesterners. Texas was settled by Southerners which is why they have a southern accent and Californians don't.

    Replies: @Desiderius

    , @Old Palo Altan
    @David Davenport

    My New England and New York relations who went to California all went to San Francisco and its environs.

    My Texan and before that St Louis relations all went to the LA area, as did many of their friends and family. Someone should do a study of the St Louis to Texas to southern California syndrome. I'm talking about well-off people who didn't need to move anywhere, but who recognised new opportunities for money-making. One who came from Texas to Los Angeles precisely at my own grandparent's bidding (they had grown up together) did particularly well - his name was Conrad Hilton.

  85. @Bill H
    @Almost Missouri

    That's how reverse mortgages work, and the deal is spelled out before you sign the papers. The bank gives you money (you didn't mention that part), and then keeps giving you money (you didn't mention that part either), and then when you die the bank gets to sell your house and pocket the portion of the proceeds that represents the amount of money they gave you plus interest.

    If there is money left over from the sale, your heirs get it, but the basic part of the deal is that you have to repay what the bank gave you by selling the house. That was in the papers you signed.

    Replies: @International Jew, @MBlanc46

    I think AlmostMissouri understands all that. You’ve misunderstood him if you take his comment as praise for USA Today.

  86. You want to read about public infrastructure fiasco Norcal style, read about the new Transbay Terminal project in San Francisco.

  87. @Almost Missouri
    Off this Topic, but
    very much On regular iSteve Topics:

    USA Today launches "in depth" (but not too much depth) report on home"owners" who sold their homes to banks in reverse mortgages who are now discovering—or their heirs are discovering—that they no longer own what they sold.

    Of course, those banks followed the government's and media's demand that they increase lending to the melanin-enriched, but now it turns out that lending to the melanin-enriched was actually "predatory lending", so the banks will have to forgive the loans, give back the property and make up the loss by taking more money from less melanin-enriched sources.

    Replies: @Bill H, @Redneck farmer, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri

  88. @S
    @nebulafox


    What more or less happened was that people did lose that knowledge, but the aqueducts still ran after 476. As long as nothing too disasterous happened, people could keep on living as they did under the Empire under late antiquity conditions.
     
    Similarly, after the Fall of the West, people continued to use imperial coinage. However, due to wear, new coins would still have to be minted.

    These were in many instances copies of the old Roman coins, with the caveat that as the barbarians who minted them were often themselves quite illiterate the 'writing' on them was in a great many instances simply meaningless wavy lines that only looked like actual writing from a distance.

    They knew official and real Roman coins were supposed to have this thing called writing on them, so they did the best they knew how to continue the tradition.

    These are called 'barbarous imitation' coins.

    [Remindful in a somewhat disturbing way of that movie called 'Idiocracy.']

    Replies: @Hippopotamusdrome, @Seneca44

    These are called ‘barbarous imitation’ coins.

    Ancient coins are fake and gay.

    “Fairy Tales for the Penguins” [about coins, not penguins]

    • LOL: S
  89. @notsaying
    @Jack D

    I remember reading that magazine article in the New Yorker quoted above more than 15 years ago. It was startling to realize that New York City ran the risk of going without water -- with no backup plan -- for years if something went wrong with one or both of their water tunnels.

    Now after years of having this enormous project on track to a final finish, De Blasio decided there were more important priorities and took money away from it. What would he do if one of the tunnels became inoperable? What could he do?

    This makes me think, oddly enough, of nuclear power. It keeps coming up as a solution in connection with replacing some of our carbon-based power that is causing global warming. But when you think of how poorly our officials and others in charge handle making decisions that involve risk management, trusting the lives and health of millions of people to safely live near lots more nuclear power plants is just too dangerous. And of course we have no safe way to dispose of the used fuel.

    I suspect it is just a human failing that when we don't want to think about catastrophic disasters we downgrade their impact or even ignore them.

    We should try to minimize getting ourselves into situations where catastrophic disasters can occur, such as nuclear power plants -- and nuclear weapons too.

    I hope nobody in New York City does anything further to delay their water tunnel #3 completion.

    Replies: @SafeNow, @Jack D, @David Davenport

    This makes me think, oddly enough, of nuclear power. It keeps coming up as a solution in connection with replacing some of our carbon-based power that is causing global warming. But when you think of how poorly our officials and others in charge handle making decisions that involve risk management, trusting the lives and health of millions of people to safely live near lots more nuclear power plants is just too dangerous….

    //////////////

    Watts Bar Nuclear Plant

    With the addition of the first new commercial nuclear reactor brought online in the United States in the 21st century, Watts Bar now has the two newest nuclear units in the nation. Commercial operation of Watts Bar Unit 2 was declared in October 2016, while Unit 1 began operation in 1996.

    The plant is located on 1,700 acres on the northern end of the Chickamauga Reservoir near Spring City, in East Tennessee. Each unit produces about 1,150 megawatts of electricity—enough to service 650,000 homes—without creating any carbon emissions…

    https://www.tva.gov/Energy/Our-Power-System/Nuclear/Watts-Bar-Nuclear-Plant

  90. @Almost Missouri
    Off this Topic, but
    very much On regular iSteve Topics:

    USA Today launches "in depth" (but not too much depth) report on home"owners" who sold their homes to banks in reverse mortgages who are now discovering—or their heirs are discovering—that they no longer own what they sold.

    Of course, those banks followed the government's and media's demand that they increase lending to the melanin-enriched, but now it turns out that lending to the melanin-enriched was actually "predatory lending", so the banks will have to forgive the loans, give back the property and make up the loss by taking more money from less melanin-enriched sources.

    Replies: @Bill H, @Redneck farmer, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri

  91. @R.G. Camara
    @Jack D

    There's a disaster movie story waiting to be written about that. I'm picturing a blizzard or hurricane knocking out the scape routes from Manhattan, and one of the tunnels freezing and collapsing.

    It's similar to the long delay on NYC's Second Avenue Subway, which was scheduled to begin as far back as 1920, construction actually began in the 1970s, and still is not finished to this day (although a few sections opened in the last few years): https://infogalactic.com/info/Second_Avenue_Subway

    The difference is that NYC's water Tunnel #3 is delayed because no one feels any urgency---there hasn't been a water crisis in NYC to make people demand it being finished.

    In contrast, the Second Avenue Subway has been delayed because generations of rich folks on the Upper East Side (such as the late Jeffrey Epstein) have never wanted to give the common rabble ease of access to their neighborhood. UES richies used the promise of such a subway in 1920 and the 1940s to get the ugly elevated subway lines demolished, leaving the Upper East Side serviced by one very overcrowded subway line (4-5-6), that doesn't go into the heart of the UES. But then made sure further construction on the line was delayed or blocked or abandoned.

    Replies: @prosa123

    In contrast, the Second Avenue Subway has been delayed because generations of rich folks on the Upper East Side (such as the late Jeffrey Epstein) have never wanted to give the common rabble ease of access to their neighborhood. UES richies used the promise of such a subway in 1920 and the 1940s to get the ugly elevated subway lines demolished, leaving the Upper East Side serviced by one very overcrowded subway line (4-5-6), that doesn’t go into the heart of the UES. But then made sure further construction on the line was delayed or blocked or abandoned.

    The Second Avenue Subway could have gotten built in the early 1970’s, except for some very dubious money-shuffling. Federal funds had become available, and to qualify all the city had to do was match a relatively small amount of the federal money using some of its own funds it already had allocated for that purpose. These allocated city funds were a tiny percentage of the federal money they would allow the city to receive. It looked for all the world as if the work was just about to start.

    Of course that didn’t happen. Because of some fare collection shortfalls the subway fare would have to be raised by five cents. A trivial amount to be sure, but the mayor, Abraham Beame, was worried about the opposition a fare increase would engender. Using a very dubious but somehow legal scheme known thereafter as the Beame Shuffle, he used the funds set aside for the Second Avenue Subway construction to cover the existing subway’s operating deficits and avoid the fare increase.

    With the city’s money skimmed off, it could no longer qualify for the vastly greater amount of federal money. The Second Avenue Subway never got built, except for a few useless test segments, and within a short period of time the subway fare had to go up, by more than the five cents Beame had tried to stave off.

  92. @MikeatMikedotMike
    A large hole in the street is for 7 years is most impressive, even for a sinister state bureaucracy. The SF Valley's nice climate works against you in this case. Little rain fall and almost no freezing temps. A hole in street that big left open for 7 years in Chicago would have grown into an abyss a 1/2 square mile in surface area.

    But because Chicago refuses to be outdone, it does have its 300 or so miles of bikes lane set into the already narrow streets, roadway formerly meant for motor traffic. THAT is sensible infrastructure management!

    Replies: @MBlanc46, @Kaz, @Up2Drew, @mmack

    Those idiot bike lanes might not be the most ridiculous transit project in the city’s history, but they’re on the short list.

    • Agree: MikeatMikedotMike
    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
    @MBlanc46

    A common argument against transit is that allows criminals access to your neighborhood. But roads do the same thing.

    Retarding traffic retards crime. Replacing all the major thoroughfares in Chicago with bicycle-only lanes would make the North Side the safest urban district in the land.

    Remember, white people, and only white people, ride bikes. What do you have against white people? Bike lanes are our friend!

    Replies: @MikeatMikedotMike, @Peterike, @S

    , @Jim Don Bob
    @MBlanc46


    Those idiot bike lanes might not be the most ridiculous transit project in the city’s history...
     
    Idiot bike lanes are the most ridiculous transit project in any city’s history.

    FIFY
  93. @Bill H
    @Almost Missouri

    That's how reverse mortgages work, and the deal is spelled out before you sign the papers. The bank gives you money (you didn't mention that part), and then keeps giving you money (you didn't mention that part either), and then when you die the bank gets to sell your house and pocket the portion of the proceeds that represents the amount of money they gave you plus interest.

    If there is money left over from the sale, your heirs get it, but the basic part of the deal is that you have to repay what the bank gave you by selling the house. That was in the papers you signed.

    Replies: @International Jew, @MBlanc46

    Yeah, but when it’s PoC, papers are racist.

  94. @David Davenport
    @RichardTaylor

    Where did most of the settlers of California come from in the 1800s during and after the Gold Rush? I’ve heard there were a lot from the MidWest and the South but I have no idea.

    Regarding American westward re-settlement during the 19th Century: I think the general tendency was to move from east of the Mississippi to west along lines of latitude. Los Angeles, which was much smaller than San Francisco in the 1900's, had a reputation for drawing new citizens from former Confederate states. Some of their descendants voted for Californians Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan for President.

    I've needled Steve about this in the past -- what one might call D. W. Griffith's Southern California* -- but our host doesn't seem interested.

    * For example, the Ku Klux Klan, more accurately labeled the second Klan -- was active and rather popular in Los Angeles in the 1920's.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @RichardTaylor, @Flip, @Old Palo Altan

    Los Angeles is surprisingly football-oriented in part because there is a rail line from East Texas and Arkansas where they really love football. So a lot of sharecroppers came out to L.A. in the first half of the 20th Century and brought their football passion with them.

    • Agree: RichardTaylor
    • Replies: @A123
    @Steve Sailer


    Los Angeles is surprisingly football-oriented
     
    A stadium in the Westwood/Brentwood/Pico area could be home to both UCLA and an NFL team. The location would be adjacent to campus, I-10, and I-405. Beach attractions and LAX would be conveniently close by.

    If LA is football oriented, why is this obvious economic winner suppressed in favor of options that place stadiums in dangerous, crime ridden areas that keep potential fans away?

    🐻 GO BRUINS 🐻

    Replies: @Alden

  95. @Steve Sailer
    @David Davenport

    Los Angeles is surprisingly football-oriented in part because there is a rail line from East Texas and Arkansas where they really love football. So a lot of sharecroppers came out to L.A. in the first half of the 20th Century and brought their football passion with them.

    Replies: @A123

    Los Angeles is surprisingly football-oriented

    A stadium in the Westwood/Brentwood/Pico area could be home to both UCLA and an NFL team. The location would be adjacent to campus, I-10, and I-405. Beach attractions and LAX would be conveniently close by.

    If LA is football oriented, why is this obvious economic winner suppressed in favor of options that place stadiums in dangerous, crime ridden areas that keep potential fans away?

    🐻 GO BRUINS 🐻

    • Replies: @Alden
    @A123

    We don’t need any more traffic in Westwood Brentwood. The only place it could be built is the VA hospital campus. Entrance from Sunset, Wilshire and Ohio gates locked on game days. Keep the traffic away from the streets and on the freeway.

    But any time the VA even rents a couple of its 495 acres to a school or whatever the vets have a fit.

    Putting new stadiums in crime ridden black ghettos is part of urban renewal or whatever its called now. The liberals hope the stadiums will save blacks from themselves.

    Replies: @Old Palo Altan

  96. @Almost Missouri
    Off this Topic, but
    very much On regular iSteve Topics:

    USA Today launches "in depth" (but not too much depth) report on home"owners" who sold their homes to banks in reverse mortgages who are now discovering—or their heirs are discovering—that they no longer own what they sold.

    Of course, those banks followed the government's and media's demand that they increase lending to the melanin-enriched, but now it turns out that lending to the melanin-enriched was actually "predatory lending", so the banks will have to forgive the loans, give back the property and make up the loss by taking more money from less melanin-enriched sources.

    Replies: @Bill H, @Redneck farmer, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri

  97. @J.Ross
    @Jack D

    So building homesteads in savage-infested wilderness and whaling and working at enlightenment era trades and inventing modern science is nothing. Okay.

    Replies: @Jack D

    Sure it was something but pre-Civil War very large scale projects were rare, as much for financial reasons as technological ones. The Eric Canal (built in only 8 years with government borrowing) was one but it was basically just a big long ditch with some locks.

  98. @Hypnotoad666
    @Alfa158


    The primary output of the system is well paying, good benefit, low stress, secure jobs with nice pensions at the end.
     
    You forgot the private contractors who extract endless funds from endless work (and then the additional contracts for fixing the problems with the original work).

    This is what you call a public-private partnership.

    Replies: @Alfa158

    Yep, don’t want to leave them out. The California high speed choo-choo train fiasco was also partly due to that.
    No serious person actually thought that there would be a bullet train from LA to Frisco. Too hard to get right of way for new track routes that are compatible with 200 mph trains. And if you did, the route would either need to hug the coastline or go over mountains. Trains really suck at mountain climbing because of their very poor power and braking force to mass ratios. Even a 200 mph train would have to crawl at 25 mph going up and down those mountains. It would have been fun though to have 200 mph trains blasting through Malibu.
    Some analysts think that the whole project was a scheme to divert $20B. The project was to start spending some money at the cities on each end to prepare for the rest. It was rumored that the money has been diverted to cover operating deficits in the transit systems in LA and the Bay area. The rest of the money was siphoned off to pay back engineering and construction companies, non-governmental organizations, environmental consultants, marketing and advertising companies, law firms etc. who supported the election of the politicians involved.
    I don’t think there will ever be a truthful accounting for where all the money went.

    • Replies: @Alden
    @Alfa158

    Southwest Airlines if you book in advance is only about $110 round trip LA to SF free baggage too. Less than Amtrak less than 800 miles worth of gas. No wear and tear on your car.

    Replies: @RadicalCenter

  99. @Anonymous
    @Alden


    My LA neighborhood is built on sand. Which means the sidewalks sometimes cave in when it rains and the underlying sand washes away into the gutter.
     
    How well does a sand foundation absorb earthquakes, compared to other foundations?

    Replies: @Jack D, @Alden

    Poorly. During earthquakes sand tends to turn to quicksand – the vibration turns the sand from a solid to a liquid and everything on top sinks into the liquid.

  100. @Gandydancer
    You got off easy.

    How long did it take to replace the eastern span of the SF Bay Bridge, and what was the multiple of the multi-$billion cost of doing that to the original cost of the entire span, including the western far-more-than-half?

    Replies: @Alden

    The new Bay Bridge, including the lighting was manufactured in China and put together here.

    It took about 7 years to erect a sound deflection wall for 8 blocks on the sides of the freeway in my Los Angeles neighborhood.

  101. @MikeatMikedotMike
    A large hole in the street is for 7 years is most impressive, even for a sinister state bureaucracy. The SF Valley's nice climate works against you in this case. Little rain fall and almost no freezing temps. A hole in street that big left open for 7 years in Chicago would have grown into an abyss a 1/2 square mile in surface area.

    But because Chicago refuses to be outdone, it does have its 300 or so miles of bikes lane set into the already narrow streets, roadway formerly meant for motor traffic. THAT is sensible infrastructure management!

    Replies: @MBlanc46, @Kaz, @Up2Drew, @mmack

    I’m not against the idea of bike lanes, but sounds like something that isn’t usable 6 months out of the year considering the weather..

    • Replies: @MikeatMikedotMike
    @Kaz

    It's a train wreck in the winter because much of those bicycle lanes are sectioned off with permanent delineators. Plows can't reach that pavement.

    Simple physics tells me that it is more sensible to have bicyclists share the sidewalk with pedestrians, rather than the roads with motor vehicles, but heck what do I know?

  102. @nebulafox
    @Alden

    I think Warren Treadgold makes a convincing point that the plague was what really doomed late antiquity, all the moreso because no ruler could have expected it. That shows in policy decisions of Justinian's, especially concerning strategy in Italy when the Ostrogoths were at their breaking point early in the war. The plague also ravaged Sassanid Persia, which, when coupled with their ultimate defeat in the Great War and some unfortunate geography, led to wholesale conquest at the hands of the Arabs.

    The last major outbreak of plague in Constantinople took place early on in Constantine V's (underrated emperor-have a deep respect for him and his father, they helped keep the last remnant of European civilization going by the skin of their teeth during a very, very dark time in Western history) reign, which fortunately for the Romans happened to coincide with the downfall of the Umayyads. Apparently the city was so empty that to keep it-and thus the empire-going, he simply infused it wholesale with as many people in Greece he could find, including plenty of random Slavic migrants.

    Replies: @Alden

    You really know the history of that era. Thanks for the information.

  103. @David Davenport
    @RichardTaylor

    Where did most of the settlers of California come from in the 1800s during and after the Gold Rush? I’ve heard there were a lot from the MidWest and the South but I have no idea.

    Regarding American westward re-settlement during the 19th Century: I think the general tendency was to move from east of the Mississippi to west along lines of latitude. Los Angeles, which was much smaller than San Francisco in the 1900's, had a reputation for drawing new citizens from former Confederate states. Some of their descendants voted for Californians Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan for President.

    I've needled Steve about this in the past -- what one might call D. W. Griffith's Southern California* -- but our host doesn't seem interested.

    * For example, the Ku Klux Klan, more accurately labeled the second Klan -- was active and rather popular in Los Angeles in the 1920's.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @RichardTaylor, @Flip, @Old Palo Altan

    I think the general tendency was to move from east of the Mississippi to west along lines of latitude. Los Angeles, which was much smaller than San Francisco in the 1900’s, had a reputation for drawing new citizens from former Confederate states.

    Ah, so that’s why the Beach boys were singing about beautiful blonde girls in Southern California. Although, I guess they came from all over once Hollywood was established.

  104. @Alfa158
    @Hypnotoad666

    Yep, don't want to leave them out. The California high speed choo-choo train fiasco was also partly due to that.
    No serious person actually thought that there would be a bullet train from LA to Frisco. Too hard to get right of way for new track routes that are compatible with 200 mph trains. And if you did, the route would either need to hug the coastline or go over mountains. Trains really suck at mountain climbing because of their very poor power and braking force to mass ratios. Even a 200 mph train would have to crawl at 25 mph going up and down those mountains. It would have been fun though to have 200 mph trains blasting through Malibu.
    Some analysts think that the whole project was a scheme to divert $20B. The project was to start spending some money at the cities on each end to prepare for the rest. It was rumored that the money has been diverted to cover operating deficits in the transit systems in LA and the Bay area. The rest of the money was siphoned off to pay back engineering and construction companies, non-governmental organizations, environmental consultants, marketing and advertising companies, law firms etc. who supported the election of the politicians involved.
    I don't think there will ever be a truthful accounting for where all the money went.

    Replies: @Alden

    Southwest Airlines if you book in advance is only about $110 round trip LA to SF free baggage too. Less than Amtrak less than 800 miles worth of gas. No wear and tear on your car.

    • Replies: @RadicalCenter
    @Alden

    Good point, but factor in the cost of Uber or taxi to and from the airport on both ends, if you fly instead of driving.

    That's four Uber rides at a minimum, easily bringing that $110 cost to $250-300 (depending how far you live from LAX, Long Beach, or Burbank airport, and how far your SF hotel/destination is from SFO).

    Replies: @Alden

  105. Anonymous[427] • Disclaimer says:

    Looks like the buses were propane powered. Whether the fire was caused by a propane issue is not said, but though propane is generally a safe fuel, stupidity in maintenance can cause leaks. I will be monitoring propane industry magazine sites for any update on this. I have owned and worked on LP Gas powered vehicles and like propane a lot but it does demand common sense in maintaining. if sabotage or stupidity was involved, it would be important to know.

    Passenger Buses Catch Fire at LAX

    The flames that burned two buses and closed the LAX-it lot temporarily could be seen from a mile away. Rick Montanez reports for the NBC4 News at 11 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 21, 2019.

    Los Angeles firefighters put out a fire that destroyed two liquid propane-powered passenger buses and damaged a third at Los Angeles International Airport Saturday, officials said.

    The fires were reported around 9 p.m. near the Uber and Lyft pickup lots, said Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Brian Humphrey. It took 25 firefighters less than 20 minutes to put out the flames.

    The fire temporarily closed the LAX-it facility, but it was partially reopened after the flames were extinguished. Those exiting LAX were asked to follow directions of airport staff until further notice, Humphrey said.

    “Though the fire’s cause remains under investigation, there is NO reason to consider it suspicious at this time,” he said.

    There were no reports of passengers on board and no reports of injuries, he said, but added that the cleanup prompted the closing of the lots and was causing delays for airport traffic.

    • Replies: @Alden
    @Anonymous

    That’s the first thing I thought, propane. Propane tanks accelerate forest fires. Reason so many people died in the October 2017 Napa fire was their own propane tanks that just exploded one by one up the mountain.

    White men have been banned from working at LAX. What does one expect with an all affirmative action workforce?

    In the news Friday night it was taking more than an hour & 1/2 to get from the freeway off ramp to the terminals because of holiday traffic.

    Replies: @Anonymous

  106. @MBlanc46
    @MikeatMikedotMike

    Those idiot bike lanes might not be the most ridiculous transit project in the city’s history, but they’re on the short list.

    Replies: @Reg Cæsar, @Jim Don Bob

    A common argument against transit is that allows criminals access to your neighborhood. But roads do the same thing.

    Retarding traffic retards crime. Replacing all the major thoroughfares in Chicago with bicycle-only lanes would make the North Side the safest urban district in the land.

    Remember, white people, and only white people, ride bikes. What do you have against white people? Bike lanes are our friend!

    • Replies: @MikeatMikedotMike
    @Reg Cæsar

    The elevated train is the black honor student's preferred method of transit. After all, it's free when you jump the turnstile.

    , @Peterike
    @Reg Cæsar

    “Remember, white people, and only white people, ride bikes.”

    I don’t know where you are, but in New York area a great amount of bike traffic is Hispanic and Chinese. But that’s for work. Agreed, only white people ride bikes for (1) exercise or (2) saving the world via their (imaginary) carbon footprint.

    Replies: @Jack D

    , @S
    @Reg Cæsar


    Retarding traffic retards crime. Replacing all the major thoroughfares in Chicago with bicycle-only lanes would make the North Side the safest urban district in the land.
     
    Your vision almost came into being for a time.

    Before the advent of the automobile in the latter 19th and early 20th century, the big thing being pushed to replace the horse for personal transit in the 1880's & 90's was the bicycle. They were even looking at constructing paved roads between the major cities just for bike traffic.

    Of course, the internal combustion engine was developed which resulted in the automobile and motorbike, and the plain bicycle got largely left to the wayside.
  107. @Danindc
    @anon

    That kid is smart, brave and charismatic. I have been a fan since the beginning. He is our last best hope.

    Replies: @Justvisiting

    Great comments by the kid.

    The big issue that remains that is not in the quadrant at all is high trust/low trust.

    If average folks believe they live in a low trust society (regardless of whether they are correct or not) they will game any system until it bleeds out….

    Establishing trust has to be the first priority–that will have to be _earned_ by the politicians, by the mass media, by corporations, by non-profits, by religious institutions. Horrendous damage has been done by a generation of sociopaths who rule these institutions.

    Establishing trust may take generations, or may never happen at all.

  108. @Peterike
    @Jack D

    “I’m sure that there were make-work jobs in the medieval Church and state – guardian of the Holy Foreskin”

    Mocking condescension isn’t the way to make friends across the aisle. Ok, Super Jew?

    Replies: @anon, @Mr. Anon

    guardian of the Holy Foreskin

    That whole mohel infant penis thing? wrong wrong wrong.

  109. @indocon
    Here is a really funny example of California infra gone crazy due to white liberals running it, this is a bridge over nothing and connecting nothing right now, eventually the so called HSR was supposed to go over it I suppose. This picture is taken while driving slightly north of Fresno on CA 99 which was full of potholes this summer, this is not a joke!
    https://i.postimg.cc/SNypr5b9/IMG-3730.jpg

    Couple of years down the road I fully imagine that this orphan bridge will be the roof for more homeless and drug addict people.

    Replies: @Mr. Anon, @indocon

    California has a long history of this. The San Jose “Freeway to Nowhere”, from 1976:

    Known at the time as the Governor Jerry Brown memorial Interchange.

    • Replies: @Old Palo Altan
    @Mr. Anon

    Thanks for the memories.
    I once drove out of my way to take a look at that. Was it ever finished?

    Replies: @Mr. Anon

  110. @Hippopotamusdrome
    @J.Ross



    Uchechukw Chukwuma

     

    His favorite band: Chumbawamba - Tubthumping (Official Video)

    Replies: @J.Ross

    They’re actually really interesting. They’re hard lefties, and true believers in every tried and failed nonsense, but they write the most literate and interesting liner notes in pop music (it helps that they’re really pseudo-academics pretending to be pop stars), their worst stuff is often at least experimental, and some of their music is both good and historically interesting. They have an album of old English rebel music going back to the Diggers. I really like Salt Fare North Sea, which is about the utterly joyless life of a North Sea sailor (cf The World At War with Lawrence Olivier, I forget which episode, but they couldn’t even expect dry bedsheets), and inspired by Churchill squashing a rescue effort during WWII because it might have given away the “rescue” of Norway’s King Haakon. Also Amnesia, which is about voting for a party that betrays you, and is therefore perfectly applicable across the ideological spectrum.

    • Replies: @John Johnson
    @J.Ross

    They’re actually really interesting. They’re hard lefties, and true believers in every tried and failed nonsense, but they write the most literate and interesting liner notes in pop music

    Who gives a fudge about some pop leftist band? They are a dime a dozen.

    Plug your garbage somewhere else.

    Replies: @J.Ross

    , @notsaying
    @J.Ross

    Chumbawamba -- I remember them from a few years ago, their one hit song "Tubthumping" mentioned by Hippopotamusdrome was really good. They played it live over that year's New Years Eve TV shows from Times Square. I wish I could hear it again live this year too. I can hear the words "I get knocked down but I get up again" in my head right now.

    I don't follow bands much anymore but I thank you for your recommendations. I disagree with John Johnson's criticism of your comment. I am glad you made it.

  111. @Peterike
    @Jack D

    “I’m sure that there were make-work jobs in the medieval Church and state – guardian of the Holy Foreskin”

    Mocking condescension isn’t the way to make friends across the aisle. Ok, Super Jew?

    Replies: @anon, @Mr. Anon

    He really can’t hide his contempt, can he? Not even a little.

  112. @RichardTaylor
    California is a case study on mass immigration given how nice it was just a few decades ago and where it's now destined. I assume its past will be Memory Holed.

    Where did most of the settlers of California come from in the 1800s during and after the Gold Rush? I've heard there were a lot from the MidWest and the South but I have no idea.

    Replies: @David Davenport, @I Have Scinde

    An old joke: Along the Oregon/California trail was a sign directing people to Oregon. Those who could read followed the Oregon Trail. Those who could not followed the California Trail.

    My understanding is that the majority of both migrations was midwestern in origin, with especially the northwest taking people primarily of Anglo-Saxon and Germanic descent. California probably received a larger relative proportion of Anglo-Irish (or Scots-Irish). Of course, rural and inland California was overwhelmed by Oklahomans in the 1930s, so its original population is not as much of a factor.

    As far as the Civil War is concerned, the entire state stayed Union, but Southern California (like Arizona) was a hotbed of Southern sympathy, while Northern California was emphatically pro-Union. That is probably the first of the major intrastate north-south tensions, some of which Mr. Sailer has written about over the years.

    • Replies: @RichardTaylor
    @I Have Scinde

    Fascinating, thanks. Amazing how culture follows a population, as if we weren't blank slates.

    , @anonn
    @I Have Scinde

    Misleading re: the civil war. In 1860, there were only 10k people in LA County as a whole - and back then LA County included Ventura, Orange, and parts of San Bernardino Counties as well. Of the non-Indian residents, most were still Californios (mestizo colonists from Mexico). A tiny handful of people, around 50, left to volunteer for the Confederacy.

    It was such a "hotbed" of pro-slavery activism that, for the early part of the war, it was successfully garrisoned by 1 (one) Army officer. This was still the frontier. People who moved here did so in order to make a new life for themselves.

    In the end California's entire contribution to the Civil War was simply mining gold and paying taxes; we did raise a company that went out and occupied a small part of Arizona.

    One of the problems with the study of history is that we over-emphasize wars since they're great reading. What actually happened to So. Cal. in the Civil War is much less romantic: a bunch of people in the letter to the editor demographic wrote letters to the editor; a few pro-slavery malcontents went back to where they came from; some tiny military units were raised to relieve the general US Army from the burden of patrolling the overland trade routes.

  113. @Jack D
    @notsaying

    I agree with you about nuclear power. If the Japanese, who are the Westernized civilization perhaps least affected by Current Year vibrancy, could not manage this stuff safely, what hope is there for the New Woke America to do this? ( I have to say that the Japanese have their own structural/cultural flaws which impair their decision making, just different ones than us.)

    I suspect that the lack of urgency on the water tunnel is in part because it is not as dire as people make it out to be in the interest of getting funding for this multi-billion $ project (which probably has cost 10x what it should have cost). First of all , the older tunnels are bored straight thru bedrock in a non-seismic zone, so the risk of their collapse is remote. Probably 2,000 years from now when they (whoever they is) are exploring the ruins of out civilization, they will find these tunnels and water will still be pouring of them. 2nd, if something was to happen to one of the tunnels, the result would not be 4 million people with dry taps. Perhaps pressure would drop, perhaps there would be rotating shutoffs to various neighborhoods but they would find some way to quickly improvise a solution until the emergency repairs could be made.

    Replies: @notsaying, @Redneck farmer, @I Have Scinde

    “I agree with you about nuclear power. If the Japanese, who are the Westernized civilization perhaps least affected by Current Year vibrancy, could not manage this stuff safely, what hope is there for the New Woke America to do this? ( I have to say that the Japanese have their own structural/cultural flaws which impair their decision making, just different ones than us.)”

    My God, the misunderstanding of nuclear power is astounding.

    The Japanese had a mishandling of nuclear power on a tsunami that killed >10,000 people. A massive, tragic, natural disaster, that utterly destroyed several built-in layers of safety mechanisms. How many people died due to the nuclear emergency that followed? If you’re generous in attributing deaths to it, one person died as a result of the nuclear meltdown. If you’re not generous – zero. How many people die in other types of electrical generating plants? How could anyone with a straight face claim it is not managed safely with that impressive display? If a coal or natural gas plant destroyed by a tsunami had resulted in one death eight years later, would you consider such a plant hazardous and unfit for Woke or diverse populations?

    Let me tell you this, as well. Almost all nuclear reactors in the U.S. are watched over by college dropouts or people who never went to college. And the U.S. have had zero civilian nuclear deaths, and only one military (a misguided attempt by the U.S. Army, of all things). If they can keep nuclear energy safe, just about anyone can.

    Mr. D, I highly recommend you stick to matters legal. Random unsubstantiated declarations of who is capable to “safely” operate nuclear power are clearly not your forte.

    • Agree: danand
    • Replies: @Justvisiting
    @I Have Scinde

    Yep--nuclear power in the US was designed and built by white men who thought there would be white male technicians monitoring and maintaining it in perpetuity.

    Fatal error--future generations will find this out the hard way...

    , @Sparkon
    @I Have Scinde

    Really? You sound like a shill for the nuclear power industry, those "too cheap to meter" people.

    Tell us please when TEPCO will recover the coria from the three melted-down nuclear reactors at Japan's Fukushima Dai-ichi, or when and how TEPCO will stop the flow of subsurface spring water running down from the inland mountains, streaming under the crippled power plant, and flowing on out to the Pacific Ocean.

    Until that happens, the crippled nuclear power plants at Fukushima will continue to poison the planet.

    Meanwhile, for reasons that aren't clear, insect populations all over the planet are disappearing, and may be dying off. It used to be in the U.S. Midwest that a road trip would result in the windshield and front end of the car getting covered with splattered insects. A halo of flying insects would converge on any light at night, but now for some reason, most of those insects seem to have disappeared.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windshield_phenomenon


    Eating food contaminated with radioactive particles may be more perilous than thought—at least for insects. Butterfly larvae fed even slightly tainted leaves collected near the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station were more likely to suffer physical abnormalities and low survival rates than those fed uncontaminated foliage, a new study finds. The research suggests that the environment in the Fukushima region, particularly in areas off-limits to humans because of safety concerns, will remain dangerous for wildlife for some time.
     
    https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2014/09/fukushima-radiation-still-poisoning-insects

    Of course, for a long time already, we've been dousing insects and plants with all manner of insecticides and herbicides, including the widely used, reputably carcinogenic herbicide RoundUp.

    Whatever the case, the theory of so-called beneficial radiation hormesis may not apply to insects. Hell, it may not apply to humans either, at least to those of us who already get our dose of beneficial radiation from the Sun.

    In California, only the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant remains in action. During the approval and construction process for that plant, some claim that PG&E covered up its knowledge of the extensive Hosgri Fault system lying under and around Diablo Canyon.
    , @Jack D
    @I Have Scinde

    Deaths are not the only standard. As a result of the Fukushima disaster, 80 square miles of valuable land became uninhabitable. 50,000 people lost their homes. The resulting cleanup will cost countless billions and will take many decades. There is no possible conventional power plant accident that would have those kind of ramifications.

    The accident was completely foreseeable - the only question was when it would happen. They built these reactors virtually on the beach in a known tsunami zone. They put the emergency generators down in the basement. The American reactors that were similarly sited have now been shut down but this is closing the barn door after the horse is gone. Who knows what other reactors have DIFFERENT (and currently improperly evaluated) risks that will lead to a different failure mode - on a known or unknown earthquake fault, design flaw, etc. These accidents are always the result of multiple cascading failures and not just one thing.

    I am well aware of who watches US nuclear plants. It could not be otherwise. People of high intelligence would go nuts with the boredom of that job, watching day after day for anomalies that should never come if everything is working as it should, gauges whose needles never seem to move. It's like watching paint dry. The problem (as we saw at Three Mile Island) is that when the anomalies do occur, the people who are there are not equipped to diagnose and deal with the issues in real time and get overloaded with information, are mislead by false indicator lights, stymied by stuck valves, etc. They are like the 3rd world pilots who fly their planes every day as long as everything is working but when something goes wrong the amount of time they need to figure it out is greater than the amount of time they have left before the plane goes into a unrecoverable dive.

    , @notsaying
    @I Have Scinde

    I think the reason the world has not seen more nuclear power and nuclear weapons accidents is mostly due to sheer good. I'd say the same about why America hasn't had another big terror attack -- mostly good luck.

    Yes there are people trying to keep us safe against nuclear but the forces protecting us are no match against machine and human error, which can be controlled but not eliminated -- ever. For terrorism there are also people out there trying to protect us but they cannot do so every time and eventually, inevitably, they will fail someday.

    To say that the nuclear power disaster in Japan was a "natural" disaster is to ignore the known risks of locating the plants by the ocean in a place subject to tsunamis. Now I see just today that the Japanese government is thinking of releasing stored and still radioactive water. What kind of a solution is that for this problem? A very poor one, to say the least, yet it will probably happen because there's nothing else better to be done.

    I think your faith in safely run nuclear power plants is misplaced. One day the good luck will run out and we will be mostly helpless to stop a terrible event from happening here or somewhere else in the world.

    https://japantoday.com/category/national/japan-gov%27t-proposes-fukushima-water-release-to-sea-or-air

    Replies: @A123

  114. @J.Ross
    @Hippopotamusdrome

    They're actually really interesting. They're hard lefties, and true believers in every tried and failed nonsense, but they write the most literate and interesting liner notes in pop music (it helps that they're really pseudo-academics pretending to be pop stars), their worst stuff is often at least experimental, and some of their music is both good and historically interesting. They have an album of old English rebel music going back to the Diggers. I really like Salt Fare North Sea, which is about the utterly joyless life of a North Sea sailor (cf The World At War with Lawrence Olivier, I forget which episode, but they couldn't even expect dry bedsheets), and inspired by Churchill squashing a rescue effort during WWII because it might have given away the "rescue" of Norway's King Haakon. Also Amnesia, which is about voting for a party that betrays you, and is therefore perfectly applicable across the ideological spectrum.

    Replies: @John Johnson, @notsaying

    They’re actually really interesting. They’re hard lefties, and true believers in every tried and failed nonsense, but they write the most literate and interesting liner notes in pop music

    Who gives a fudge about some pop leftist band? They are a dime a dozen.

    Plug your garbage somewhere else.

    • Replies: @J.Ross
    @John Johnson

    The ones who know how to read are not a dime a dozen. Chumba is made of leftists who decided to try to use pop music to propagandize. Your normal pop tart is (and this goes as well for the actors) a human-shaped nothing who wants to be famous and agrees to mouth phrases they do not understand.

  115. maybe US Air Force still uses B-52 bombers not because they’re somewhat cost efficient and still relatively useful for basic bombing, but because Air Force knows, they couldn’t design and build a new general purpose bomber fleet without it costing 1 trillion dollars and being a fiasco. it’s possible Air Force could not build new ICBMs if they had to, which they might in a few decades. those Minutemans are OLD, and Peacekeeper never went into real service.

    America has a lot of stuff built 50 or 100 years ago that they’re not able to improve on at all despite 20 trillion dollar GDP. commercial nuclear reactors, various highways, tunnels, railways, and bridges. certain water systems, skyscrapers, airports, and stadiums seem beyond improvement or reproduction even with tech 50 years later and 100 times the budget. it somehow costs 3 million dollars to build 1 mile of highway and 12 billion dollars to build 1 fission reactor that puts out 1 GW. and that takes over 10 years to build.

    currently, America can’t get into space, and all their funded space launch programs for human spaceflight are a huge fiasco. ULA Space Launch System has now been funded with 30 billion or so, and it will NEVER fly. NASA still does an AWESOME job for unmanned space missions, but they are now garbage at human missions. without SpaceX, which was TOTALLY random and serendipitous, they would be SOL.

    ULA was still charging Washington DC something totally ridiculous for each launch, like 200 million dollars, for 1980 level technology. and it was bottom of the barrel level service for 2020.

    • Replies: @anon
    @prime noticer

    currently, America can’t get into space, and all their funded space launch programs for human spaceflight are a huge fiasco.

    Nah. Read this:

    https://www.space.com/boeing-starliner-capsule-oft-landing-success.html

    The clock / timing error between the Atlas 5 and the Boeing capsule is not going to be a difficult fix.

    This is the first US man-rated capsule to land on dirt rather than water. Boeing's capsule is intended to be used for 10 missions, rather than only 1 as was done in the 60's and 70's. Sure, it looks a whole lot like the Apollo capsule, but form follows function.

    Launches should cost a whole lot less than what the Russians have been charging us, and Boeing / SpaceX manned vehicles are not 1960's designs like the Russians are using.

    Sure, there's lotsa problems just in California alone. But. Aerospace isn't one of them, mostly. Mostly....

  116. anon[392] • Disclaimer says:
    @prime noticer
    maybe US Air Force still uses B-52 bombers not because they're somewhat cost efficient and still relatively useful for basic bombing, but because Air Force knows, they couldn't design and build a new general purpose bomber fleet without it costing 1 trillion dollars and being a fiasco. it's possible Air Force could not build new ICBMs if they had to, which they might in a few decades. those Minutemans are OLD, and Peacekeeper never went into real service.

    America has a lot of stuff built 50 or 100 years ago that they're not able to improve on at all despite 20 trillion dollar GDP. commercial nuclear reactors, various highways, tunnels, railways, and bridges. certain water systems, skyscrapers, airports, and stadiums seem beyond improvement or reproduction even with tech 50 years later and 100 times the budget. it somehow costs 3 million dollars to build 1 mile of highway and 12 billion dollars to build 1 fission reactor that puts out 1 GW. and that takes over 10 years to build.

    currently, America can't get into space, and all their funded space launch programs for human spaceflight are a huge fiasco. ULA Space Launch System has now been funded with 30 billion or so, and it will NEVER fly. NASA still does an AWESOME job for unmanned space missions, but they are now garbage at human missions. without SpaceX, which was TOTALLY random and serendipitous, they would be SOL.

    ULA was still charging Washington DC something totally ridiculous for each launch, like 200 million dollars, for 1980 level technology. and it was bottom of the barrel level service for 2020.

    Replies: @anon

    currently, America can’t get into space, and all their funded space launch programs for human spaceflight are a huge fiasco.

    Nah. Read this:

    https://www.space.com/boeing-starliner-capsule-oft-landing-success.html

    The clock / timing error between the Atlas 5 and the Boeing capsule is not going to be a difficult fix.

    This is the first US man-rated capsule to land on dirt rather than water. Boeing’s capsule is intended to be used for 10 missions, rather than only 1 as was done in the 60’s and 70’s. Sure, it looks a whole lot like the Apollo capsule, but form follows function.

    Launches should cost a whole lot less than what the Russians have been charging us, and Boeing / SpaceX manned vehicles are not 1960’s designs like the Russians are using.

    Sure, there’s lotsa problems just in California alone. But. Aerospace isn’t one of them, mostly. Mostly….

    • Disagree: The Wild Geese Howard
  117. Meanwhile the Chinese keep rolling on….

  118. “Los Angeles International Airport [has] a parking lot called LAXit.”

    If the airport needs money, maybe they could license this copyrighted parking-lot name for an over-the-counter laxative. Ad jingles suggest themselves: “LAXit unpacks it!”

  119. Growing up in NYC in the 50s and 60s I used to drive by a massive construction project known as Bruckner Boulevard. It was under construction for years and years. Noted NYT architecture critic Ada Louise Huxtable titled her collection of essays “Will They Ever Finish Bruckner Boulevard?”. Well worth the read if you’re a NYC architecture buff.

  120. @Thomas
    What boggles my mind about LAX is they don't have a people mover tram, but force everyone to use the same hyper-congested street loop all traffic has to use just to get from one part of the airport to another. The horseshoe layout of the terminals and the offsite locations of the rental car lots, parking lots, etc., would make a people mover a natural fit. It's a solution that airports with less than half the annual passenger traffic of LAX have figured out. Supposedly LAX is supposed to have a tram by 2023, knock on wood. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terminals_of_Los_Angeles_International_Airport#LAX_Train)

    I left California years ago, and generally avoid LAX like the plague now in favor of Long Beach for trips to the LA area. I made the mistake earlier this year of giving LAX one more chance, figuring I'd save an hour on the freeway on the way to a wedding in Santa Barbara. At best, I wound up giving that hour back just getting to the rental car lot and dealing with the wait there.

    Replies: @Stan Adams

    LAX is an unholy Frankenstein of an airport. Most of the original ’60s buildings are still there, buried under decades’ worth of piecemeal additions and superficial facelifts.

    From the early ’60s to the early ’80s, all of the terminals at LAX were one-story structures – the ticket counters and the baggage carousels were on the same floor of the same building. Both arriving and departing passengers used the same one-level roadway. The oval-shaped aircraft-boarding areas were connected to the main terminal buildings by underground tunnels:
    The upper levels were literally grafted on to the existing airport facilities in the ’80s. The roadway was double-decked, the terminal buildings were triple-storied (first-floor arrivals, second-floor departures, third-floor security checkpoints), and above-ground concourses were built to allow (relatively) easier access to the gates for departing passengers.

    The above picture was taken around 1962. Here’s a map from 1984. The ovals are still present, but they have now sprouted unwieldy add-ons:
    Terminal 1 and the Tom Bradley International Terminal opened in the months leading up to the ’84 Games.

    And now an aerial from 2019. Of the original six ovals, five are still discernible. Only Terminal 2 has been replaced outright:
    The third-floor security-checkpoint areas were adequate in the ’80s. Today they’re a bottleneck.

    Before 9/11, airport security was pretty easy to deal with. Some airports restricted airside access to ticketed passengers only; some let anyone go through. You emptied your pockets into a basket, put your carry-on bag on the conveyor belt, and walked through the scanner. Sometimes the machine would beep and a rent-a-cop would give you a cursory once-over with a hand scanner. Then you would retrieve your pocket change, grab your bag, and hustle over to the gate. The whole process took no more than thirty seconds.

    Here is a video from 1995 showing “beefed-up security” at the Miami airport. Note the lack of congestion around the checkpoints:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4l8WwG7iNAA#t=0m40s

    Like LAX, MIA dates from the earliest epoch of the jet era and all of its newer construction has been bolted onto the older structures. There are parts of MIA where you walk on terrazzo flooring that was installed in 1959. In the oldest part of the airport, most of the ancient ticket counters have been replaced, along with the terrazzo flooring adjacent to the counters, but no effort has been made to match the newer flooring with the older one. A sharp line in the floor separates the old sickly-yellowish terrazzo from the new bright-white one. It looks awful. But that part of the terminal services only a few budget airlines, so no one cares.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    @Stan Adams

    They've been talking about adding another runway at LAX, although more flights presumably would stress out the roadways and terminals even more.

    It seems like since LAX, successful hub airports like DFW and Denver go way out of town and build on a vast scale. In contrast, LAX was built in an era of luxury air travel, with passengers in suits and ties, and there wasn't much of an Asia market.

    LAX is evidence you don't really need to have a great airport to do a lot of business if you are in the right place. The only weather that could shut down LAX is fog, but nowadays they have giant beacon lamps to cut through the fog.

    Replies: @Stan Adams, @Prester John

  121. @I Have Scinde
    @RichardTaylor

    An old joke: Along the Oregon/California trail was a sign directing people to Oregon. Those who could read followed the Oregon Trail. Those who could not followed the California Trail.

    My understanding is that the majority of both migrations was midwestern in origin, with especially the northwest taking people primarily of Anglo-Saxon and Germanic descent. California probably received a larger relative proportion of Anglo-Irish (or Scots-Irish). Of course, rural and inland California was overwhelmed by Oklahomans in the 1930s, so its original population is not as much of a factor.

    As far as the Civil War is concerned, the entire state stayed Union, but Southern California (like Arizona) was a hotbed of Southern sympathy, while Northern California was emphatically pro-Union. That is probably the first of the major intrastate north-south tensions, some of which Mr. Sailer has written about over the years.

    Replies: @RichardTaylor, @anonn

    Fascinating, thanks. Amazing how culture follows a population, as if we weren’t blank slates.

  122. @Stan Adams
    @Thomas

    LAX is an unholy Frankenstein of an airport. Most of the original '60s buildings are still there, buried under decades' worth of piecemeal additions and superficial facelifts.

    From the early '60s to the early '80s, all of the terminals at LAX were one-story structures - the ticket counters and the baggage carousels were on the same floor of the same building. Both arriving and departing passengers used the same one-level roadway. The oval-shaped aircraft-boarding areas were connected to the main terminal buildings by underground tunnels:
    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/08/f5/0b/08f50ba56c78bb854b8417068a07d9c6.jpg

    The upper levels were literally grafted on to the existing airport facilities in the '80s. The roadway was double-decked, the terminal buildings were triple-storied (first-floor arrivals, second-floor departures, third-floor security checkpoints), and above-ground concourses were built to allow (relatively) easier access to the gates for departing passengers.

    The above picture was taken around 1962. Here's a map from 1984. The ovals are still present, but they have now sprouted unwieldy add-ons:
    https://live.staticflickr.com/1610/24328157255_929c21f79d_b.jpg

    Terminal 1 and the Tom Bradley International Terminal opened in the months leading up to the '84 Games.

    And now an aerial from 2019. Of the original six ovals, five are still discernible. Only Terminal 2 has been replaced outright:
    https://www.discoverlosangeles.com/sites/default/files/styles/hero/public/images/2019-01/LAX%20Aerial%20View.jpg

    The third-floor security-checkpoint areas were adequate in the '80s. Today they're a bottleneck.

    Before 9/11, airport security was pretty easy to deal with. Some airports restricted airside access to ticketed passengers only; some let anyone go through. You emptied your pockets into a basket, put your carry-on bag on the conveyor belt, and walked through the scanner. Sometimes the machine would beep and a rent-a-cop would give you a cursory once-over with a hand scanner. Then you would retrieve your pocket change, grab your bag, and hustle over to the gate. The whole process took no more than thirty seconds.

    Here is a video from 1995 showing "beefed-up security" at the Miami airport. Note the lack of congestion around the checkpoints:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4l8WwG7iNAA#t=0m40s

    Like LAX, MIA dates from the earliest epoch of the jet era and all of its newer construction has been bolted onto the older structures. There are parts of MIA where you walk on terrazzo flooring that was installed in 1959. In the oldest part of the airport, most of the ancient ticket counters have been replaced, along with the terrazzo flooring adjacent to the counters, but no effort has been made to match the newer flooring with the older one. A sharp line in the floor separates the old sickly-yellowish terrazzo from the new bright-white one. It looks awful. But that part of the terminal services only a few budget airlines, so no one cares.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer

    They’ve been talking about adding another runway at LAX, although more flights presumably would stress out the roadways and terminals even more.

    It seems like since LAX, successful hub airports like DFW and Denver go way out of town and build on a vast scale. In contrast, LAX was built in an era of luxury air travel, with passengers in suits and ties, and there wasn’t much of an Asia market.

    LAX is evidence you don’t really need to have a great airport to do a lot of business if you are in the right place. The only weather that could shut down LAX is fog, but nowadays they have giant beacon lamps to cut through the fog.

    • Replies: @Stan Adams
    @Steve Sailer

    Landlocked airports designed in the late '50s and early '60s, such as LAX (1962) and MIA (1959), have never fully overcome the limitations of their design. MIA in particular was considered obsolete after less than a decade. But plans to build a massive "jetport" in the Everglades were scuttled by environmental concerns. The existing airport has had to suffice.

    Airport design advanced more rapidly in the '60s than in any other decade before or since. Compare LAX to Tampa (1971), the first airport to feature a monorail. Atlanta (1980) was heavily influenced by Tampa, and Denver (1995) is very similar to Atlanta. (Both Atlanta and Denver use underground trains to shuttle passengers to and from the gates.) Pittsburgh (1992), which also uses an underground train, was the first American airport to include a full-scale shopping mall.

    DFW (1974) was originally designed to minimize the walking distance from curb to gate. (At one time it boasted one of the shortest such average distances of any major airport in the world.) The numerous terminals were semi-circular so that the gates could be positioned close to the ticket counters. But then deregulation came and the airlines began switching to a hub-and-spoke system, and DFW's seeming strength became something of a liability. But the airport prospered nonetheless:
    https://www.dallasnews.com/arts-entertainment/architecture/2014/01/11/architecture-d-fw-airport-a-no-nonsense-monument-hits-middle-age/

    , @Prester John
    @Steve Sailer

    Don't forget Dulles, which is outside of The Beltway. JFK is similar to LAX I think. JFK and LaGuardia are within the NYC limits and Newark is just across the Hudson River from Manhattan. I am surprised that there haven't been more air collisions. By the way, pilots HATE LaG because of all the gyrations they have to do in order to land (I hear that Lindbergh in San Diego also sucks for pilots).

    Replies: @William Badwhite

  123. @Almost Missouri
    Off this Topic, but
    very much On regular iSteve Topics:

    USA Today launches "in depth" (but not too much depth) report on home"owners" who sold their homes to banks in reverse mortgages who are now discovering—or their heirs are discovering—that they no longer own what they sold.

    Of course, those banks followed the government's and media's demand that they increase lending to the melanin-enriched, but now it turns out that lending to the melanin-enriched was actually "predatory lending", so the banks will have to forgive the loans, give back the property and make up the loss by taking more money from less melanin-enriched sources.

    Replies: @Bill H, @Redneck farmer, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri

  124. @Almost Missouri
    Off this Topic, but
    very much On regular iSteve Topics:

    USA Today launches "in depth" (but not too much depth) report on home"owners" who sold their homes to banks in reverse mortgages who are now discovering—or their heirs are discovering—that they no longer own what they sold.

    Of course, those banks followed the government's and media's demand that they increase lending to the melanin-enriched, but now it turns out that lending to the melanin-enriched was actually "predatory lending", so the banks will have to forgive the loans, give back the property and make up the loss by taking more money from less melanin-enriched sources.

    Replies: @Bill H, @Redneck farmer, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri

  125. @Almost Missouri
    Off this Topic, but
    very much On regular iSteve Topics:

    USA Today launches "in depth" (but not too much depth) report on home"owners" who sold their homes to banks in reverse mortgages who are now discovering—or their heirs are discovering—that they no longer own what they sold.

    Of course, those banks followed the government's and media's demand that they increase lending to the melanin-enriched, but now it turns out that lending to the melanin-enriched was actually "predatory lending", so the banks will have to forgive the loans, give back the property and make up the loss by taking more money from less melanin-enriched sources.

    Replies: @Bill H, @Redneck farmer, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri, @Almost Missouri

  126. @Kaz
    @MikeatMikedotMike

    I'm not against the idea of bike lanes, but sounds like something that isn't usable 6 months out of the year considering the weather..

    Replies: @MikeatMikedotMike

    It’s a train wreck in the winter because much of those bicycle lanes are sectioned off with permanent delineators. Plows can’t reach that pavement.

    Simple physics tells me that it is more sensible to have bicyclists share the sidewalk with pedestrians, rather than the roads with motor vehicles, but heck what do I know?

  127. @Reg Cæsar
    @MBlanc46

    A common argument against transit is that allows criminals access to your neighborhood. But roads do the same thing.

    Retarding traffic retards crime. Replacing all the major thoroughfares in Chicago with bicycle-only lanes would make the North Side the safest urban district in the land.

    Remember, white people, and only white people, ride bikes. What do you have against white people? Bike lanes are our friend!

    Replies: @MikeatMikedotMike, @Peterike, @S

    The elevated train is the black honor student’s preferred method of transit. After all, it’s free when you jump the turnstile.

  128. @David Davenport
    @RichardTaylor

    Where did most of the settlers of California come from in the 1800s during and after the Gold Rush? I’ve heard there were a lot from the MidWest and the South but I have no idea.

    Regarding American westward re-settlement during the 19th Century: I think the general tendency was to move from east of the Mississippi to west along lines of latitude. Los Angeles, which was much smaller than San Francisco in the 1900's, had a reputation for drawing new citizens from former Confederate states. Some of their descendants voted for Californians Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan for President.

    I've needled Steve about this in the past -- what one might call D. W. Griffith's Southern California* -- but our host doesn't seem interested.

    * For example, the Ku Klux Klan, more accurately labeled the second Klan -- was active and rather popular in Los Angeles in the 1920's.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @RichardTaylor, @Flip, @Old Palo Altan

    I’ve always read that LA was settled by Midwesterners. Texas was settled by Southerners which is why they have a southern accent and Californians don’t.

    • Replies: @Desiderius
    @Flip

    Texas has its share of Germans as well.

    Replies: @Flip

  129. @Steve Sailer
    @Stan Adams

    They've been talking about adding another runway at LAX, although more flights presumably would stress out the roadways and terminals even more.

    It seems like since LAX, successful hub airports like DFW and Denver go way out of town and build on a vast scale. In contrast, LAX was built in an era of luxury air travel, with passengers in suits and ties, and there wasn't much of an Asia market.

    LAX is evidence you don't really need to have a great airport to do a lot of business if you are in the right place. The only weather that could shut down LAX is fog, but nowadays they have giant beacon lamps to cut through the fog.

    Replies: @Stan Adams, @Prester John

    Landlocked airports designed in the late ’50s and early ’60s, such as LAX (1962) and MIA (1959), have never fully overcome the limitations of their design. MIA in particular was considered obsolete after less than a decade. But plans to build a massive “jetport” in the Everglades were scuttled by environmental concerns. The existing airport has had to suffice.

    Airport design advanced more rapidly in the ’60s than in any other decade before or since. Compare LAX to Tampa (1971), the first airport to feature a monorail. Atlanta (1980) was heavily influenced by Tampa, and Denver (1995) is very similar to Atlanta. (Both Atlanta and Denver use underground trains to shuttle passengers to and from the gates.) Pittsburgh (1992), which also uses an underground train, was the first American airport to include a full-scale shopping mall.

    DFW (1974) was originally designed to minimize the walking distance from curb to gate. (At one time it boasted one of the shortest such average distances of any major airport in the world.) The numerous terminals were semi-circular so that the gates could be positioned close to the ticket counters. But then deregulation came and the airlines began switching to a hub-and-spoke system, and DFW’s seeming strength became something of a liability. But the airport prospered nonetheless:
    https://www.dallasnews.com/arts-entertainment/architecture/2014/01/11/architecture-d-fw-airport-a-no-nonsense-monument-hits-middle-age/

  130. @Anonymous
    @Alden


    My LA neighborhood is built on sand. Which means the sidewalks sometimes cave in when it rains and the underlying sand washes away into the gutter.
     
    How well does a sand foundation absorb earthquakes, compared to other foundations?

    Replies: @Jack D, @Alden

    If there is an earthquake, it will be bad. Solid clay is most earthquake resistant. Many coastal areas are just a few inches of soil on sand.

  131. @A123
    @Steve Sailer


    Los Angeles is surprisingly football-oriented
     
    A stadium in the Westwood/Brentwood/Pico area could be home to both UCLA and an NFL team. The location would be adjacent to campus, I-10, and I-405. Beach attractions and LAX would be conveniently close by.

    If LA is football oriented, why is this obvious economic winner suppressed in favor of options that place stadiums in dangerous, crime ridden areas that keep potential fans away?

    🐻 GO BRUINS 🐻

    Replies: @Alden

    We don’t need any more traffic in Westwood Brentwood. The only place it could be built is the VA hospital campus. Entrance from Sunset, Wilshire and Ohio gates locked on game days. Keep the traffic away from the streets and on the freeway.

    But any time the VA even rents a couple of its 495 acres to a school or whatever the vets have a fit.

    Putting new stadiums in crime ridden black ghettos is part of urban renewal or whatever its called now. The liberals hope the stadiums will save blacks from themselves.

    • Replies: @Old Palo Altan
    @Alden

    You live in/near Brentwood?

    Tell me: just how bad was the damage on Tigertail in the recent fire? My mother's best friend lived there from birth to death, a span of over ninety years. Beautiful Spanish colonial - I'd hate to think it's gone.

    Replies: @Alden

  132. I thought seven or eight months was a long time to have a 20-foot-deep trench in my street.* What exactly are they doing in there? We have multi-racial road and utility crews – white, Mexican, black – and while they seem to have a lot of laughs, they don’t take any ten years to lay pipe.

    *During which period, I would sometimes bring out Cokes, popsicles, tea, etc. It was one of our hottest summers. A number of years after that, there was a crew of guys a half-mile away building a pump station or some such on formerly open space. They had to clear some trees, some of them nice ones. Somehow a bunch of damned ligustrums got left. Being a busybody, I stopped and went up to the foreman-looking-fellow and said, hey, could you do me a favor and cut the ligustrums while you’re at it? He looked at me and said, hey, you’re the lady that gave us popsicles! A couple weeks later, the ligustrums were gone.

  133. @Anonymous
    Looks like the buses were propane powered. Whether the fire was caused by a propane issue is not said, but though propane is generally a safe fuel, stupidity in maintenance can cause leaks. I will be monitoring propane industry magazine sites for any update on this. I have owned and worked on LP Gas powered vehicles and like propane a lot but it does demand common sense in maintaining. if sabotage or stupidity was involved, it would be important to know.

    Passenger Buses Catch Fire at LAX

    The flames that burned two buses and closed the LAX-it lot temporarily could be seen from a mile away. Rick Montanez reports for the NBC4 News at 11 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 21, 2019.

    Los Angeles firefighters put out a fire that destroyed two liquid propane-powered passenger buses and damaged a third at Los Angeles International Airport Saturday, officials said.

    The fires were reported around 9 p.m. near the Uber and Lyft pickup lots, said Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Brian Humphrey. It took 25 firefighters less than 20 minutes to put out the flames.

    The fire temporarily closed the LAX-it facility, but it was partially reopened after the flames were extinguished. Those exiting LAX were asked to follow directions of airport staff until further notice, Humphrey said.


    "Though the fire's cause remains under investigation, there is NO reason to consider it suspicious at this time," he said.

    There were no reports of passengers on board and no reports of injuries, he said, but added that the cleanup prompted the closing of the lots and was causing delays for airport traffic.

     

    Replies: @Alden

    That’s the first thing I thought, propane. Propane tanks accelerate forest fires. Reason so many people died in the October 2017 Napa fire was their own propane tanks that just exploded one by one up the mountain.

    White men have been banned from working at LAX. What does one expect with an all affirmative action workforce?

    In the news Friday night it was taking more than an hour & 1/2 to get from the freeway off ramp to the terminals because of holiday traffic.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    @Alden

    Burying propane tanks is a good idea. It isn’t that expensive. If you have a million dollar house,$25K for a big tank, burial, a wet leg pump for filling tanks and a small propane gen set seems reasonable to me.

    Most of my neighbors have company owned tanks because they are cheap and lazy. I bought a used “conning tower” tank and had it buried and plumbed and that’s why I pay a fair bit less a gallon than they do. I don’t have the fill pump yet because I’m going to have to run the tank dry to have it installed. Then I intend to build one last hot rod with a propane tank so I can have a year of fuel stashed away. New light duty propane vehicles are not in these last couple of years, the only current certified vehicles are school buses. I’m thinking a square body Chevy with an analog LS6-get rid of the electronics and run a Impco mixer on a 4bbl aftermarket manifold and a distributor on a circle track front cover or go EDIS. Anyone have any thoughts? I already have a pile of Impco stuff and a tank off a Schwann truck in the shed.

  134. @MikeatMikedotMike
    A large hole in the street is for 7 years is most impressive, even for a sinister state bureaucracy. The SF Valley's nice climate works against you in this case. Little rain fall and almost no freezing temps. A hole in street that big left open for 7 years in Chicago would have grown into an abyss a 1/2 square mile in surface area.

    But because Chicago refuses to be outdone, it does have its 300 or so miles of bikes lane set into the already narrow streets, roadway formerly meant for motor traffic. THAT is sensible infrastructure management!

    Replies: @MBlanc46, @Kaz, @Up2Drew, @mmack

    Absolutely agree, as a Chicago resident. The bike lanes are lunacy, in large part because there wasn’t additional room available for bike lanes, they just carved them out of the previous overcrowded existing asphalt downtown.

    The bike lanes don’t even necessarily run in the same direction as one-way streets, and one’s basic instinct is not to look in the opposite direction of vehicular traffic when when crossing. So you get walloped by a bike, instead.

    I work in the Loop. Between the individuals walking the streets with the special oblivion that cell phone texting creates, and the impunity with which bicycle and scooter riders assume right-of-way against multi-ton vehicles, it’s amazing we’re not scooping bodies off the streets of downtown on a continuous basis.

    • Agree: MikeatMikedotMike
  135. @Steve Sailer
    @Ano

    William Mulholland's 1914 water main still works, so other than a few spectacular leaks now and then, the water situation at present is okay. The new one is intended to survive the next Big One, which Mulholland's might not. It would be nice if they got the new one done before the Big One hits...

    Replies: @Ano

    Thank you for your reply, but I have to ask what’s the good of a big-one-proof water main if by California neglecting infrastructure maintenance of dams, the latter potentially aren’t?

    I refer to your analysis and commentaries re: Oroville….and dam failures in general…

    https://www.takimag.com/article/undocumented_irrigation_steve_sailer/

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/what-a-dam-collapse-looks-like/

  136. Missing link from my earlier comment #8:

    https://www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/investigations/2019/12/18/reverse-mortgages-leave-families-battling-property-after-death/2597369001/

    Apparently Ron’s last software update prevents commenters from commenting on their own comments, so unfortunately, this will appear way late in the thread.

    • Replies: @Known Fact
    @Almost Missouri

    You can't comment on your own comment at Unz anymore? Hasn't he heard Dorothy Parker explain that "Of course I talk to myself. I like a good speaker, and I appreciate an intelligent audience.”

  137. @I Have Scinde
    @Jack D

    "I agree with you about nuclear power. If the Japanese, who are the Westernized civilization perhaps least affected by Current Year vibrancy, could not manage this stuff safely, what hope is there for the New Woke America to do this? ( I have to say that the Japanese have their own structural/cultural flaws which impair their decision making, just different ones than us.)"

    My God, the misunderstanding of nuclear power is astounding.

    The Japanese had a mishandling of nuclear power on a tsunami that killed >10,000 people. A massive, tragic, natural disaster, that utterly destroyed several built-in layers of safety mechanisms. How many people died due to the nuclear emergency that followed? If you're generous in attributing deaths to it, one person died as a result of the nuclear meltdown. If you're not generous - zero. How many people die in other types of electrical generating plants? How could anyone with a straight face claim it is not managed safely with that impressive display? If a coal or natural gas plant destroyed by a tsunami had resulted in one death eight years later, would you consider such a plant hazardous and unfit for Woke or diverse populations?

    Let me tell you this, as well. Almost all nuclear reactors in the U.S. are watched over by college dropouts or people who never went to college. And the U.S. have had zero civilian nuclear deaths, and only one military (a misguided attempt by the U.S. Army, of all things). If they can keep nuclear energy safe, just about anyone can.

    Mr. D, I highly recommend you stick to matters legal. Random unsubstantiated declarations of who is capable to "safely" operate nuclear power are clearly not your forte.

    Replies: @Justvisiting, @Sparkon, @Jack D, @notsaying

    Yep–nuclear power in the US was designed and built by white men who thought there would be white male technicians monitoring and maintaining it in perpetuity.

    Fatal error–future generations will find this out the hard way…

  138. @I Have Scinde
    @Jack D

    "I agree with you about nuclear power. If the Japanese, who are the Westernized civilization perhaps least affected by Current Year vibrancy, could not manage this stuff safely, what hope is there for the New Woke America to do this? ( I have to say that the Japanese have their own structural/cultural flaws which impair their decision making, just different ones than us.)"

    My God, the misunderstanding of nuclear power is astounding.

    The Japanese had a mishandling of nuclear power on a tsunami that killed >10,000 people. A massive, tragic, natural disaster, that utterly destroyed several built-in layers of safety mechanisms. How many people died due to the nuclear emergency that followed? If you're generous in attributing deaths to it, one person died as a result of the nuclear meltdown. If you're not generous - zero. How many people die in other types of electrical generating plants? How could anyone with a straight face claim it is not managed safely with that impressive display? If a coal or natural gas plant destroyed by a tsunami had resulted in one death eight years later, would you consider such a plant hazardous and unfit for Woke or diverse populations?

    Let me tell you this, as well. Almost all nuclear reactors in the U.S. are watched over by college dropouts or people who never went to college. And the U.S. have had zero civilian nuclear deaths, and only one military (a misguided attempt by the U.S. Army, of all things). If they can keep nuclear energy safe, just about anyone can.

    Mr. D, I highly recommend you stick to matters legal. Random unsubstantiated declarations of who is capable to "safely" operate nuclear power are clearly not your forte.

    Replies: @Justvisiting, @Sparkon, @Jack D, @notsaying

    Really? You sound like a shill for the nuclear power industry, those “too cheap to meter” people.

    Tell us please when TEPCO will recover the coria from the three melted-down nuclear reactors at Japan’s Fukushima Dai-ichi, or when and how TEPCO will stop the flow of subsurface spring water running down from the inland mountains, streaming under the crippled power plant, and flowing on out to the Pacific Ocean.

    Until that happens, the crippled nuclear power plants at Fukushima will continue to poison the planet.

    Meanwhile, for reasons that aren’t clear, insect populations all over the planet are disappearing, and may be dying off. It used to be in the U.S. Midwest that a road trip would result in the windshield and front end of the car getting covered with splattered insects. A halo of flying insects would converge on any light at night, but now for some reason, most of those insects seem to have disappeared.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windshield_phenomenon

    Eating food contaminated with radioactive particles may be more perilous than thought—at least for insects. Butterfly larvae fed even slightly tainted leaves collected near the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station were more likely to suffer physical abnormalities and low survival rates than those fed uncontaminated foliage, a new study finds. The research suggests that the environment in the Fukushima region, particularly in areas off-limits to humans because of safety concerns, will remain dangerous for wildlife for some time.

    https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2014/09/fukushima-radiation-still-poisoning-insects

    Of course, for a long time already, we’ve been dousing insects and plants with all manner of insecticides and herbicides, including the widely used, reputably carcinogenic herbicide RoundUp.

    Whatever the case, the theory of so-called beneficial radiation hormesis may not apply to insects. Hell, it may not apply to humans either, at least to those of us who already get our dose of beneficial radiation from the Sun.

    In California, only the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant remains in action. During the approval and construction process for that plant, some claim that PG&E covered up its knowledge of the extensive Hosgri Fault system lying under and around Diablo Canyon.

    • Agree: notsaying
  139. @S
    @nebulafox


    What more or less happened was that people did lose that knowledge, but the aqueducts still ran after 476. As long as nothing too disasterous happened, people could keep on living as they did under the Empire under late antiquity conditions.
     
    Similarly, after the Fall of the West, people continued to use imperial coinage. However, due to wear, new coins would still have to be minted.

    These were in many instances copies of the old Roman coins, with the caveat that as the barbarians who minted them were often themselves quite illiterate the 'writing' on them was in a great many instances simply meaningless wavy lines that only looked like actual writing from a distance.

    They knew official and real Roman coins were supposed to have this thing called writing on them, so they did the best they knew how to continue the tradition.

    These are called 'barbarous imitation' coins.

    [Remindful in a somewhat disturbing way of that movie called 'Idiocracy.']

    Replies: @Hippopotamusdrome, @Seneca44

    I thought “Idiocracy” was a comedy when I saw it over a decade ago. Who knew that it was a documentary of the future?

  140. @unit472
    Given the same rules, regulations and mind set of today I doubt the Golden Gate Bridge could have even been built. If somehow, approval had been obtained it wouldn't have been completed until sometime in the Eisenhower Administration.

    Replies: @Clifford Brown, @Brad Anbro

    There WERE regulations that were in effect when the Golden Gate bridge was being built. But
    they were not “government” regulations; they were the regulations imposed on ALL of the workers by the general contractor! If a worker did not want to abide by these regulations, he did not have a job. It was as simple as that. I believe that during the entire project, there was only ONE fatality.

    There was a documentary on awhile ago about the construction of the Golden Gate bridge and all of these points were mentioned. It was a very good documentary.

  141. @MBlanc46
    @MikeatMikedotMike

    Those idiot bike lanes might not be the most ridiculous transit project in the city’s history, but they’re on the short list.

    Replies: @Reg Cæsar, @Jim Don Bob

    Those idiot bike lanes might not be the most ridiculous transit project in the city’s history…

    Idiot bike lanes are the most ridiculous transit project in any city’s history.

    FIFY

  142. @indocon
    Here is a really funny example of California infra gone crazy due to white liberals running it, this is a bridge over nothing and connecting nothing right now, eventually the so called HSR was supposed to go over it I suppose. This picture is taken while driving slightly north of Fresno on CA 99 which was full of potholes this summer, this is not a joke!
    https://i.postimg.cc/SNypr5b9/IMG-3730.jpg

    Couple of years down the road I fully imagine that this orphan bridge will be the roof for more homeless and drug addict people.

    Replies: @Mr. Anon, @indocon

    Very interesting, did not know that before. You can see Jerry Brown’s wrench in the wheel of CA’s progress showed up as back as 1976. Good thing that this interchange was finally completed, it is used by tens of thousands of commuters today.

  143. @George
    "built by William Mulholland in 1914 (see Chinatown for a fictionalized version) using mules and men with shovels. "

    I am too lazy to search for pics of California, DuckDuckGo returned a page about water projects in NY state as a search result. A few men with shovels but no mules.

    1906-1917: Building New York's water supply
    https://mashable.com/2016/05/07/building-new-york-water-supply/

    Steam excavators were a mid 1800s type device.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steam_shovel

    Were the men low paid immigrants taking jobs away from real Americans?

    The William Mulholland immigrant experience in brief:

    William Mulholland was born in Belfast, County of Antrim, Ireland ... educated at O'Connell School by the Christian Brothers... beaten by his father for receiving bad marks in school ... off to sea. At 15, ... British Merchant Navy... After nearly losing a leg in a logging accident ... 1876 stowed away on a ship in New York bound for California ... discovered in Panama ... forced to leave the ship ... Walked over 47 miles through jungle ... arrived in Los Angeles in 1877.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Mulholland#Early_life

    I think the Erie Canal 1817-1829 was built by men with shovels and mules.

    Replies: @Jack D

    Before the 1930s, most power equipment on a construction site would be steam powered (and cable operated) and often temporary rails would be laid for it to run on. In effect these things were steam locomotives with power accessories and the technology was a spin off from railroad development (and itself useful for building new railroads. Railroads were the driving force of the 19th century economy the way automobiles were the drivers of the 20th.

    Gradually, the rails were replaced by caterpillar tracks, the steam engine with a diesel and the cable operate winches with hydraulics. As the internal combustion diesel engines developed for road use, the technology spun back into railroads and excavators and supplanted steam. Steam engines required a lot of maintenance and hand labor – feed them with coal and water, empty the ashes, etc.

  144. @I Have Scinde
    @Jack D

    "I agree with you about nuclear power. If the Japanese, who are the Westernized civilization perhaps least affected by Current Year vibrancy, could not manage this stuff safely, what hope is there for the New Woke America to do this? ( I have to say that the Japanese have their own structural/cultural flaws which impair their decision making, just different ones than us.)"

    My God, the misunderstanding of nuclear power is astounding.

    The Japanese had a mishandling of nuclear power on a tsunami that killed >10,000 people. A massive, tragic, natural disaster, that utterly destroyed several built-in layers of safety mechanisms. How many people died due to the nuclear emergency that followed? If you're generous in attributing deaths to it, one person died as a result of the nuclear meltdown. If you're not generous - zero. How many people die in other types of electrical generating plants? How could anyone with a straight face claim it is not managed safely with that impressive display? If a coal or natural gas plant destroyed by a tsunami had resulted in one death eight years later, would you consider such a plant hazardous and unfit for Woke or diverse populations?

    Let me tell you this, as well. Almost all nuclear reactors in the U.S. are watched over by college dropouts or people who never went to college. And the U.S. have had zero civilian nuclear deaths, and only one military (a misguided attempt by the U.S. Army, of all things). If they can keep nuclear energy safe, just about anyone can.

    Mr. D, I highly recommend you stick to matters legal. Random unsubstantiated declarations of who is capable to "safely" operate nuclear power are clearly not your forte.

    Replies: @Justvisiting, @Sparkon, @Jack D, @notsaying

    Deaths are not the only standard. As a result of the Fukushima disaster, 80 square miles of valuable land became uninhabitable. 50,000 people lost their homes. The resulting cleanup will cost countless billions and will take many decades. There is no possible conventional power plant accident that would have those kind of ramifications.

    The accident was completely foreseeable – the only question was when it would happen. They built these reactors virtually on the beach in a known tsunami zone. They put the emergency generators down in the basement. The American reactors that were similarly sited have now been shut down but this is closing the barn door after the horse is gone. Who knows what other reactors have DIFFERENT (and currently improperly evaluated) risks that will lead to a different failure mode – on a known or unknown earthquake fault, design flaw, etc. These accidents are always the result of multiple cascading failures and not just one thing.

    I am well aware of who watches US nuclear plants. It could not be otherwise. People of high intelligence would go nuts with the boredom of that job, watching day after day for anomalies that should never come if everything is working as it should, gauges whose needles never seem to move. It’s like watching paint dry. The problem (as we saw at Three Mile Island) is that when the anomalies do occur, the people who are there are not equipped to diagnose and deal with the issues in real time and get overloaded with information, are mislead by false indicator lights, stymied by stuck valves, etc. They are like the 3rd world pilots who fly their planes every day as long as everything is working but when something goes wrong the amount of time they need to figure it out is greater than the amount of time they have left before the plane goes into a unrecoverable dive.

    • Agree: notsaying
  145. @Reg Cæsar
    @MBlanc46

    A common argument against transit is that allows criminals access to your neighborhood. But roads do the same thing.

    Retarding traffic retards crime. Replacing all the major thoroughfares in Chicago with bicycle-only lanes would make the North Side the safest urban district in the land.

    Remember, white people, and only white people, ride bikes. What do you have against white people? Bike lanes are our friend!

    Replies: @MikeatMikedotMike, @Peterike, @S

    “Remember, white people, and only white people, ride bikes.”

    I don’t know where you are, but in New York area a great amount of bike traffic is Hispanic and Chinese. But that’s for work. Agreed, only white people ride bikes for (1) exercise or (2) saving the world via their (imaginary) carbon footprint.

    • Replies: @Jack D
    @Peterike

    The GrubHub drivers are not really riding bikes, they are driving illegal electric motorcycles in the bike lane.

    This is similar to what happened with Uber. Someone has reinvented the wheel (literally in this case) by ignoring the law. Very soon after motorized vehicles were invented, laws were enacted to cope with them because they were so much faster and more dangerous than previous vehicles. Anything with a motor had to have registration plates, the driver had to be licensed and insured, etc. The electric bike manufacturers get around this by the simple expedient of ignoring the law.

  146. Meanwhile in Russia:

    • Replies: @anon
    @Cagey Beast

    Impressive what can be done with proper engineering and full backing of a government that actually wants things done right the first time. The Kerch strait isn't that deep, so bridge building is straight forward. The Germans during WW II built a kind of long cable driven rig, it probably looked like a really big amusement park ride with some sightseeing gondolas on it. Such a system could not transfer much of anything, but did get people across and back.

    The Kerch strait bridge is both rail and road traffic, and economically ties Crimea to the Russian mainland by literally going around Ukrainian zones of control. Again, it's impressive what can be done with enough brain power, man power and cultural unity. The US could do stuff like that, except that infighting is more important to our elites than benefiting the larger society.

  147. @John Johnson
    @J.Ross

    They’re actually really interesting. They’re hard lefties, and true believers in every tried and failed nonsense, but they write the most literate and interesting liner notes in pop music

    Who gives a fudge about some pop leftist band? They are a dime a dozen.

    Plug your garbage somewhere else.

    Replies: @J.Ross

    The ones who know how to read are not a dime a dozen. Chumba is made of leftists who decided to try to use pop music to propagandize. Your normal pop tart is (and this goes as well for the actors) a human-shaped nothing who wants to be famous and agrees to mouth phrases they do not understand.

  148. @David Davenport
    @RichardTaylor

    Where did most of the settlers of California come from in the 1800s during and after the Gold Rush? I’ve heard there were a lot from the MidWest and the South but I have no idea.

    Regarding American westward re-settlement during the 19th Century: I think the general tendency was to move from east of the Mississippi to west along lines of latitude. Los Angeles, which was much smaller than San Francisco in the 1900's, had a reputation for drawing new citizens from former Confederate states. Some of their descendants voted for Californians Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan for President.

    I've needled Steve about this in the past -- what one might call D. W. Griffith's Southern California* -- but our host doesn't seem interested.

    * For example, the Ku Klux Klan, more accurately labeled the second Klan -- was active and rather popular in Los Angeles in the 1920's.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @RichardTaylor, @Flip, @Old Palo Altan

    My New England and New York relations who went to California all went to San Francisco and its environs.

    My Texan and before that St Louis relations all went to the LA area, as did many of their friends and family. Someone should do a study of the St Louis to Texas to southern California syndrome. I’m talking about well-off people who didn’t need to move anywhere, but who recognised new opportunities for money-making. One who came from Texas to Los Angeles precisely at my own grandparent’s bidding (they had grown up together) did particularly well – his name was Conrad Hilton.

  149. @Mr. Anon
    @indocon

    California has a long history of this. The San Jose "Freeway to Nowhere", from 1976:

    https://www.mercurynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/20131016__joecolla1.jpg?w=600

    Known at the time as the Governor Jerry Brown memorial Interchange.

    Replies: @Old Palo Altan

    Thanks for the memories.
    I once drove out of my way to take a look at that. Was it ever finished?

    • Replies: @Mr. Anon
    @Old Palo Altan


    Was it ever finished?
     
    It was eventually. I remember it happening after Deukmajian became governor, but I might be mistaken - it might have happened while Governor Moonbeam was still in office.
  150. @Alden
    @A123

    We don’t need any more traffic in Westwood Brentwood. The only place it could be built is the VA hospital campus. Entrance from Sunset, Wilshire and Ohio gates locked on game days. Keep the traffic away from the streets and on the freeway.

    But any time the VA even rents a couple of its 495 acres to a school or whatever the vets have a fit.

    Putting new stadiums in crime ridden black ghettos is part of urban renewal or whatever its called now. The liberals hope the stadiums will save blacks from themselves.

    Replies: @Old Palo Altan

    You live in/near Brentwood?

    Tell me: just how bad was the damage on Tigertail in the recent fire? My mother’s best friend lived there from birth to death, a span of over ninety years. Beautiful Spanish colonial – I’d hate to think it’s gone.

    • Replies: @Alden
    @Old Palo Altan

    Near Brentwood, but sorry I don’t know much about the fire damage.

  151. Wow! Reminds me of the Hutchinson River Bridge in the Bronx, a piddling little drawbridge 400 feet long and two lanes wide in each direction which would open for the occasional boat or barge to pass under. Took six years to refurbish. SIX!!!! Something about “labor problems?”

  152. @I Have Scinde
    @Jack D

    "I agree with you about nuclear power. If the Japanese, who are the Westernized civilization perhaps least affected by Current Year vibrancy, could not manage this stuff safely, what hope is there for the New Woke America to do this? ( I have to say that the Japanese have their own structural/cultural flaws which impair their decision making, just different ones than us.)"

    My God, the misunderstanding of nuclear power is astounding.

    The Japanese had a mishandling of nuclear power on a tsunami that killed >10,000 people. A massive, tragic, natural disaster, that utterly destroyed several built-in layers of safety mechanisms. How many people died due to the nuclear emergency that followed? If you're generous in attributing deaths to it, one person died as a result of the nuclear meltdown. If you're not generous - zero. How many people die in other types of electrical generating plants? How could anyone with a straight face claim it is not managed safely with that impressive display? If a coal or natural gas plant destroyed by a tsunami had resulted in one death eight years later, would you consider such a plant hazardous and unfit for Woke or diverse populations?

    Let me tell you this, as well. Almost all nuclear reactors in the U.S. are watched over by college dropouts or people who never went to college. And the U.S. have had zero civilian nuclear deaths, and only one military (a misguided attempt by the U.S. Army, of all things). If they can keep nuclear energy safe, just about anyone can.

    Mr. D, I highly recommend you stick to matters legal. Random unsubstantiated declarations of who is capable to "safely" operate nuclear power are clearly not your forte.

    Replies: @Justvisiting, @Sparkon, @Jack D, @notsaying

    I think the reason the world has not seen more nuclear power and nuclear weapons accidents is mostly due to sheer good. I’d say the same about why America hasn’t had another big terror attack — mostly good luck.

    Yes there are people trying to keep us safe against nuclear but the forces protecting us are no match against machine and human error, which can be controlled but not eliminated — ever. For terrorism there are also people out there trying to protect us but they cannot do so every time and eventually, inevitably, they will fail someday.

    To say that the nuclear power disaster in Japan was a “natural” disaster is to ignore the known risks of locating the plants by the ocean in a place subject to tsunamis. Now I see just today that the Japanese government is thinking of releasing stored and still radioactive water. What kind of a solution is that for this problem? A very poor one, to say the least, yet it will probably happen because there’s nothing else better to be done.

    I think your faith in safely run nuclear power plants is misplaced. One day the good luck will run out and we will be mostly helpless to stop a terrible event from happening here or somewhere else in the world.

    https://japantoday.com/category/national/japan-gov%27t-proposes-fukushima-water-release-to-sea-or-air

    • Replies: @A123
    @notsaying


    I think your faith in safely run nuclear power plants is misplaced.
     
    The current fleet of nuclear reactors are based on U235, because they also produce Plutonium. The Cold War option, not the best & safe one.

    Inherently safe options exist as proven technology. Oak Ridge National Laboratory [ORNL] ran a "Lifter" Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor [LFTR] for ~20,000 hours at pilot scale. Not only does this technology produce minimal waste, it can actually destroy nuclear waste produced by the current U235 reactors. (1)

    All of the pilot project documentation still exists as public record and is being used by India and China. Due to Obama's fecklessness, the U.S. is actually helping China. (2)

    Under the auspices of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, SINAP is collaborating with Oak Ridge to advance research on both salt-cooled reactors (which use molten salts to transfer heat and to cool the reactor) and salt-fueled reactors (in which the fuel, where the energy-producing nuclear reactions occur, is dissolved within the salt coolant). Signed in December 2011, the Shanghai-Oak Ridge effort has been the subject of controversy and speculation...
     
    LFTR development in the domestic U.S. remains paralyzed by the Wind/Solar investor class, DNC elite families (Gore, Kerry, Biden, Clinton).

    MERRY CHRISTMAS 🎄
    _________________

    (1) https://energyfromthorium.com/msrp/

    (2) https://www.technologyreview.com/s/542526/china-details-next-gen-nuclear-reactor-program/
  153. @Steve Sailer
    @Stan Adams

    They've been talking about adding another runway at LAX, although more flights presumably would stress out the roadways and terminals even more.

    It seems like since LAX, successful hub airports like DFW and Denver go way out of town and build on a vast scale. In contrast, LAX was built in an era of luxury air travel, with passengers in suits and ties, and there wasn't much of an Asia market.

    LAX is evidence you don't really need to have a great airport to do a lot of business if you are in the right place. The only weather that could shut down LAX is fog, but nowadays they have giant beacon lamps to cut through the fog.

    Replies: @Stan Adams, @Prester John

    Don’t forget Dulles, which is outside of The Beltway. JFK is similar to LAX I think. JFK and LaGuardia are within the NYC limits and Newark is just across the Hudson River from Manhattan. I am surprised that there haven’t been more air collisions. By the way, pilots HATE LaG because of all the gyrations they have to do in order to land (I hear that Lindbergh in San Diego also sucks for pilots).

    • Replies: @William Badwhite
    @Prester John


    By the way, pilots HATE LaG because of all the gyrations they have to do in order to land
     
    Not trying to be all Corvinusy with a reflexive contradiction, but it depends on the pilot. Some like LGA (and DCA), its fun hand flying the airplane a little bit and keeping your skills sharp. It takes some skill to arrive at a certain place at the right altitude and the right airspeed. The pilots that don't like flying more challenging approaches (and by "more challenging", I mean "only slightly more challenging - for example the river visual to 13 at LaGarbage requires a slightly more than 90 degree turn typically at 3,300 feet...BFD) tend to be the pilots without a lot of confidence in their skills or that have gotten overly dependent on automation.
  154. @Redneck farmer
    @Almost Missouri

    Will banks be able to ask, "English, motherf***er, do you understand it", someday soon?

    Replies: @RadicalCenter

    Well, in much of the “USA”, ATM machines will be likelier to ask,
    “Comprende Espanol, pendejo?”

    (sincerest apologies for the lack of a tilde in the word Espanol)

  155. @J.Ross
    @Hippopotamusdrome

    They're actually really interesting. They're hard lefties, and true believers in every tried and failed nonsense, but they write the most literate and interesting liner notes in pop music (it helps that they're really pseudo-academics pretending to be pop stars), their worst stuff is often at least experimental, and some of their music is both good and historically interesting. They have an album of old English rebel music going back to the Diggers. I really like Salt Fare North Sea, which is about the utterly joyless life of a North Sea sailor (cf The World At War with Lawrence Olivier, I forget which episode, but they couldn't even expect dry bedsheets), and inspired by Churchill squashing a rescue effort during WWII because it might have given away the "rescue" of Norway's King Haakon. Also Amnesia, which is about voting for a party that betrays you, and is therefore perfectly applicable across the ideological spectrum.

    Replies: @John Johnson, @notsaying

    Chumbawamba — I remember them from a few years ago, their one hit song “Tubthumping” mentioned by Hippopotamusdrome was really good. They played it live over that year’s New Years Eve TV shows from Times Square. I wish I could hear it again live this year too. I can hear the words “I get knocked down but I get up again” in my head right now.

    I don’t follow bands much anymore but I thank you for your recommendations. I disagree with John Johnson’s criticism of your comment. I am glad you made it.

  156. @MikeatMikedotMike
    A large hole in the street is for 7 years is most impressive, even for a sinister state bureaucracy. The SF Valley's nice climate works against you in this case. Little rain fall and almost no freezing temps. A hole in street that big left open for 7 years in Chicago would have grown into an abyss a 1/2 square mile in surface area.

    But because Chicago refuses to be outdone, it does have its 300 or so miles of bikes lane set into the already narrow streets, roadway formerly meant for motor traffic. THAT is sensible infrastructure management!

    Replies: @MBlanc46, @Kaz, @Up2Drew, @mmack

    • Replies: @JMcG
    @mmack

    A crane drove off a pier in the Galapagos lately, sinking a fuel barge and causing an oil spill in one of the most ecologically significant places on earth. Apparently not significant enough to be careful though.

  157. @Alden
    @Alfa158

    Southwest Airlines if you book in advance is only about $110 round trip LA to SF free baggage too. Less than Amtrak less than 800 miles worth of gas. No wear and tear on your car.

    Replies: @RadicalCenter

    Good point, but factor in the cost of Uber or taxi to and from the airport on both ends, if you fly instead of driving.

    That’s four Uber rides at a minimum, easily bringing that $110 cost to $250-300 (depending how far you live from LAX, Long Beach, or Burbank airport, and how far your SF hotel/destination is from SFO).

    • Replies: @Alden
    @RadicalCenter

    Friends usually drive me to the airport. I’m only 8 miles. There’s a bus stop 3 blocks away that goes right to the airport, makes pretty good time before 4/pm. SFO has BART subway to different stops near hotels downtown San Francisco. And San Mateo San Francisco BART isn’t like the East Bay BART full of black thugs.

    This time I took the city bus to LAX. A friend was going to take me. But Friday there was something in the news that it was taking an hour and 1/2 from the freeway off ramp to the terminals. I didn’t want him to go through such an ordeal in and out so I took the bus. 35 cents senior student fare I think about 75 cents adult.

  158. @Lot
    @Reg Cæsar

    I just looked into this for the same reason, to see if any Roman aqueducts are still being used as they were built for. I vaguely remember learning in school this was the case, but turns out not really.

    Virgo was used for about 500 years, then restored after 1000 years of disuse. Now used for multiple fountains and landscape watering.

    In terms of continuous use without major restorations, it doesn’t look like any Roman aqueducts qualify other than perhaps the first section of one in Spain.

    http://www.romanaqueducts.info/q&a/11stillinuse.htm

    Replies: @Known Fact

    Calling Ozone Park NY’s dreary racetrack “Aqueduct” has never ceased to puzzle and amuse me

  159. @I Have Scinde
    @RichardTaylor

    An old joke: Along the Oregon/California trail was a sign directing people to Oregon. Those who could read followed the Oregon Trail. Those who could not followed the California Trail.

    My understanding is that the majority of both migrations was midwestern in origin, with especially the northwest taking people primarily of Anglo-Saxon and Germanic descent. California probably received a larger relative proportion of Anglo-Irish (or Scots-Irish). Of course, rural and inland California was overwhelmed by Oklahomans in the 1930s, so its original population is not as much of a factor.

    As far as the Civil War is concerned, the entire state stayed Union, but Southern California (like Arizona) was a hotbed of Southern sympathy, while Northern California was emphatically pro-Union. That is probably the first of the major intrastate north-south tensions, some of which Mr. Sailer has written about over the years.

    Replies: @RichardTaylor, @anonn

    Misleading re: the civil war. In 1860, there were only 10k people in LA County as a whole – and back then LA County included Ventura, Orange, and parts of San Bernardino Counties as well. Of the non-Indian residents, most were still Californios (mestizo colonists from Mexico). A tiny handful of people, around 50, left to volunteer for the Confederacy.

    It was such a “hotbed” of pro-slavery activism that, for the early part of the war, it was successfully garrisoned by 1 (one) Army officer. This was still the frontier. People who moved here did so in order to make a new life for themselves.

    In the end California’s entire contribution to the Civil War was simply mining gold and paying taxes; we did raise a company that went out and occupied a small part of Arizona.

    One of the problems with the study of history is that we over-emphasize wars since they’re great reading. What actually happened to So. Cal. in the Civil War is much less romantic: a bunch of people in the letter to the editor demographic wrote letters to the editor; a few pro-slavery malcontents went back to where they came from; some tiny military units were raised to relieve the general US Army from the burden of patrolling the overland trade routes.

  160. @iffen
    Arson? Sabotage?

    Replies: @Barnard, @Cucksworth, @Jim Don Bob, @SunBakedSuburb, @Pop Warner, @Known Fact

    Tesla makes buses now?

  161. @Almost Missouri
    Missing link from my earlier comment #8:

    https://www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/investigations/2019/12/18/reverse-mortgages-leave-families-battling-property-after-death/2597369001/

    Apparently Ron's last software update prevents commenters from commenting on their own comments, so unfortunately, this will appear way late in the thread.

    Replies: @Known Fact

    You can’t comment on your own comment at Unz anymore? Hasn’t he heard Dorothy Parker explain that “Of course I talk to myself. I like a good speaker, and I appreciate an intelligent audience.”

  162. @Flip
    @David Davenport

    I've always read that LA was settled by Midwesterners. Texas was settled by Southerners which is why they have a southern accent and Californians don't.

    Replies: @Desiderius

    Texas has its share of Germans as well.

    • Replies: @Flip
    @Desiderius

    Yes, and Czechs.

  163. anon[112] • Disclaimer says:
    @Cagey Beast
    Meanwhile in Russia:

    https://twitter.com/27khv/status/1209068939868876805?s=20

    Replies: @anon

    Impressive what can be done with proper engineering and full backing of a government that actually wants things done right the first time. The Kerch strait isn’t that deep, so bridge building is straight forward. The Germans during WW II built a kind of long cable driven rig, it probably looked like a really big amusement park ride with some sightseeing gondolas on it. Such a system could not transfer much of anything, but did get people across and back.

    The Kerch strait bridge is both rail and road traffic, and economically ties Crimea to the Russian mainland by literally going around Ukrainian zones of control. Again, it’s impressive what can be done with enough brain power, man power and cultural unity. The US could do stuff like that, except that infighting is more important to our elites than benefiting the larger society.

    • Agree: Cagey Beast
  164. @mmack
    @MikeatMikedotMike

    And the task of salting down the lakefront bike paths saw a Park District truck slide into Da Lake dis month:

    https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/police-respond-to-car-in-water-off-lake-shore-drive/2187816/

    https://abc7chicago.com/park-district-truck-slides-into-lake-michigan-near-oak-street-beach/5746525/

    Replies: @JMcG

    A crane drove off a pier in the Galapagos lately, sinking a fuel barge and causing an oil spill in one of the most ecologically significant places on earth. Apparently not significant enough to be careful though.

  165. @Old Palo Altan
    @Mr. Anon

    Thanks for the memories.
    I once drove out of my way to take a look at that. Was it ever finished?

    Replies: @Mr. Anon

    Was it ever finished?

    It was eventually. I remember it happening after Deukmajian became governor, but I might be mistaken – it might have happened while Governor Moonbeam was still in office.

  166. @notsaying
    @I Have Scinde

    I think the reason the world has not seen more nuclear power and nuclear weapons accidents is mostly due to sheer good. I'd say the same about why America hasn't had another big terror attack -- mostly good luck.

    Yes there are people trying to keep us safe against nuclear but the forces protecting us are no match against machine and human error, which can be controlled but not eliminated -- ever. For terrorism there are also people out there trying to protect us but they cannot do so every time and eventually, inevitably, they will fail someday.

    To say that the nuclear power disaster in Japan was a "natural" disaster is to ignore the known risks of locating the plants by the ocean in a place subject to tsunamis. Now I see just today that the Japanese government is thinking of releasing stored and still radioactive water. What kind of a solution is that for this problem? A very poor one, to say the least, yet it will probably happen because there's nothing else better to be done.

    I think your faith in safely run nuclear power plants is misplaced. One day the good luck will run out and we will be mostly helpless to stop a terrible event from happening here or somewhere else in the world.

    https://japantoday.com/category/national/japan-gov%27t-proposes-fukushima-water-release-to-sea-or-air

    Replies: @A123

    I think your faith in safely run nuclear power plants is misplaced.

    The current fleet of nuclear reactors are based on U235, because they also produce Plutonium. The Cold War option, not the best & safe one.

    Inherently safe options exist as proven technology. Oak Ridge National Laboratory [ORNL] ran a “Lifter” Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor [LFTR] for ~20,000 hours at pilot scale. Not only does this technology produce minimal waste, it can actually destroy nuclear waste produced by the current U235 reactors. (1)

    All of the pilot project documentation still exists as public record and is being used by India and China. Due to Obama’s fecklessness, the U.S. is actually helping China. (2)

    Under the auspices of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, SINAP is collaborating with Oak Ridge to advance research on both salt-cooled reactors (which use molten salts to transfer heat and to cool the reactor) and salt-fueled reactors (in which the fuel, where the energy-producing nuclear reactions occur, is dissolved within the salt coolant). Signed in December 2011, the Shanghai-Oak Ridge effort has been the subject of controversy and speculation…

    LFTR development in the domestic U.S. remains paralyzed by the Wind/Solar investor class, DNC elite families (Gore, Kerry, Biden, Clinton).

    MERRY CHRISTMAS 🎄
    _________________

    (1) https://energyfromthorium.com/msrp/

    (2) https://www.technologyreview.com/s/542526/china-details-next-gen-nuclear-reactor-program/

  167. @Peterike
    @Reg Cæsar

    “Remember, white people, and only white people, ride bikes.”

    I don’t know where you are, but in New York area a great amount of bike traffic is Hispanic and Chinese. But that’s for work. Agreed, only white people ride bikes for (1) exercise or (2) saving the world via their (imaginary) carbon footprint.

    Replies: @Jack D

    The GrubHub drivers are not really riding bikes, they are driving illegal electric motorcycles in the bike lane.

    This is similar to what happened with Uber. Someone has reinvented the wheel (literally in this case) by ignoring the law. Very soon after motorized vehicles were invented, laws were enacted to cope with them because they were so much faster and more dangerous than previous vehicles. Anything with a motor had to have registration plates, the driver had to be licensed and insured, etc. The electric bike manufacturers get around this by the simple expedient of ignoring the law.

  168. @Reg Cæsar
    @MBlanc46

    A common argument against transit is that allows criminals access to your neighborhood. But roads do the same thing.

    Retarding traffic retards crime. Replacing all the major thoroughfares in Chicago with bicycle-only lanes would make the North Side the safest urban district in the land.

    Remember, white people, and only white people, ride bikes. What do you have against white people? Bike lanes are our friend!

    Replies: @MikeatMikedotMike, @Peterike, @S

    Retarding traffic retards crime. Replacing all the major thoroughfares in Chicago with bicycle-only lanes would make the North Side the safest urban district in the land.

    Your vision almost came into being for a time.

    Before the advent of the automobile in the latter 19th and early 20th century, the big thing being pushed to replace the horse for personal transit in the 1880’s & 90’s was the bicycle. They were even looking at constructing paved roads between the major cities just for bike traffic.

    Of course, the internal combustion engine was developed which resulted in the automobile and motorbike, and the plain bicycle got largely left to the wayside.

  169. Anonymous[427] • Disclaimer says:

    Before the advent of the automobile in the latter 19th and early 20th century, the big thing being pushed to replace the horse for personal transit in the 1880’s & 90’s was the bicycle. They were even looking at constructing paved roads between the major cities just for bike traffic.

    Of course, the internal combustion engine was developed which resulted in the automobile and motorbike, and the plain bicycle got largely left to the wayside.

    The velocipede, as it was then known, was a big deal since it made heretofore unexpected demands for production technique, rubber tires, and metallurgy. It also was a boon to gunmakers both because it improved steelmaking (Reynolds 531 is still the thing to use for shotgun barrels) and created a demand for effective small handguns for dispatching attacking canines, which might or might not have been rabid, and if they were and bit you, you were doomed to a very painful inevitable certain death.

    That in turn inspired the Sullivan Law in NYC. Italians were more velocipede oriented than Irish, purportedly, and since any prudent wheelman carried a revolver (they even made a special cartridge called the .22 Velo Dog) it gave them an excuse to jail any Italian not imprudent enough not to pack his trusty dog-dispaching bulldog wheelgun.

    Early automobiles might have been internal combustion, steam, or electric, of course, but by WWI and the invention of the electric starter, electrics and steam died out. But bicycle technology greatly improved prospects for making both successful automobiles, and some other form of transportation that a couple of bicycle mechanics from Dayton pursued for a while.

    • Replies: @S
    @Anonymous

    Thanks for the intriguing history surrounding the bicycle (ie velocipede). I had not been aware of the specially developed anti-canine Velo dog guns and ammunition, though it makes sense. One has to be prepared for all comers when cycling!

    The velocipede/bicycle is very much an unheralded major component of the technological transition from the horse and buggy to the automobile, motorbike, and as you allude, even the airplane.

    If oil had not been quite so easily accessible and economical, it makes for a fascinating 'what if' alternative history regarding the bike.

    As things were actually developing, sans all that oil, with the creation of the 'safety' bicycle (ie the modern bicycle) in the latter 19th century, and their economic mass production resulting in the 'bicycle craze' of the 1890's, the 20th century could well have evolved into 'the century of the bicycle' instead of 'the century of the automobile'.

    Alas, we'll never know.

    Some examples of velocipedes in Washington DC (1886) and from a German encyclopedia (1887):


    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/7/70/Bicycle_two_1886.jpg/800px-Bicycle_two_1886.jpg


    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/6e/Velocipedes.png/800px-Velocipedes.png

  170. @Old Palo Altan
    @Alden

    You live in/near Brentwood?

    Tell me: just how bad was the damage on Tigertail in the recent fire? My mother's best friend lived there from birth to death, a span of over ninety years. Beautiful Spanish colonial - I'd hate to think it's gone.

    Replies: @Alden

    Near Brentwood, but sorry I don’t know much about the fire damage.

  171. @RadicalCenter
    @Alden

    Good point, but factor in the cost of Uber or taxi to and from the airport on both ends, if you fly instead of driving.

    That's four Uber rides at a minimum, easily bringing that $110 cost to $250-300 (depending how far you live from LAX, Long Beach, or Burbank airport, and how far your SF hotel/destination is from SFO).

    Replies: @Alden

    Friends usually drive me to the airport. I’m only 8 miles. There’s a bus stop 3 blocks away that goes right to the airport, makes pretty good time before 4/pm. SFO has BART subway to different stops near hotels downtown San Francisco. And San Mateo San Francisco BART isn’t like the East Bay BART full of black thugs.

    This time I took the city bus to LAX. A friend was going to take me. But Friday there was something in the news that it was taking an hour and 1/2 from the freeway off ramp to the terminals. I didn’t want him to go through such an ordeal in and out so I took the bus. 35 cents senior student fare I think about 75 cents adult.

  172. @Alice
    While I have no doubt the infrastructure is crumbling and the populace has no will nor skill to fix it, the bus fires seem to be something else.

    the whole invention of those shuttles was a way to screw Uber--now your uber can drop off you somewhere that, as LAX put it, "most riders will be able to reach their airline within an hour". Not reach the gate, not get through security. and no guarantee the shuttle bus gets you there in an hour, so people were having to use a taxi.

    So as we know from the London uber debacle, the russian mafia is big into fleecing uber, but ya can't fleece them if they go under. Maybe they are just telling the taxi union thugs they aren't going to win? or perhaps it's the taxis themselves?

    Replies: @Alden

    Monday spent 45 minutes waiting for a shuttle bus to the terminals at LAX. I believe the airport didn’t buy any new shuttle buses to service their far away outposts.

    Merry Christmas to all Happy Hanukkah to all and enjoy whatever winter holiday that does not offend you.

    I once thought of a greeting card. White card stock with a white abstract design that wouldn’t offend Muslims or anyone else.
    Inside embossed greeting. Happy Whatever Winter Holiday doesn’t offend you.

  173. Anonymous[226] • Disclaimer says:
    @Alden
    @Anonymous

    That’s the first thing I thought, propane. Propane tanks accelerate forest fires. Reason so many people died in the October 2017 Napa fire was their own propane tanks that just exploded one by one up the mountain.

    White men have been banned from working at LAX. What does one expect with an all affirmative action workforce?

    In the news Friday night it was taking more than an hour & 1/2 to get from the freeway off ramp to the terminals because of holiday traffic.

    Replies: @Anonymous

    Burying propane tanks is a good idea. It isn’t that expensive. If you have a million dollar house,$25K for a big tank, burial, a wet leg pump for filling tanks and a small propane gen set seems reasonable to me.

    Most of my neighbors have company owned tanks because they are cheap and lazy. I bought a used “conning tower” tank and had it buried and plumbed and that’s why I pay a fair bit less a gallon than they do. I don’t have the fill pump yet because I’m going to have to run the tank dry to have it installed. Then I intend to build one last hot rod with a propane tank so I can have a year of fuel stashed away. New light duty propane vehicles are not in these last couple of years, the only current certified vehicles are school buses. I’m thinking a square body Chevy with an analog LS6-get rid of the electronics and run a Impco mixer on a 4bbl aftermarket manifold and a distributor on a circle track front cover or go EDIS. Anyone have any thoughts? I already have a pile of Impco stuff and a tank off a Schwann truck in the shed.

  174. @Anonymous

    Before the advent of the automobile in the latter 19th and early 20th century, the big thing being pushed to replace the horse for personal transit in the 1880’s & 90’s was the bicycle. They were even looking at constructing paved roads between the major cities just for bike traffic.

    Of course, the internal combustion engine was developed which resulted in the automobile and motorbike, and the plain bicycle got largely left to the wayside.
     
    The velocipede, as it was then known, was a big deal since it made heretofore unexpected demands for production technique, rubber tires, and metallurgy. It also was a boon to gunmakers both because it improved steelmaking (Reynolds 531 is still the thing to use for shotgun barrels) and created a demand for effective small handguns for dispatching attacking canines, which might or might not have been rabid, and if they were and bit you, you were doomed to a very painful inevitable certain death.

    That in turn inspired the Sullivan Law in NYC. Italians were more velocipede oriented than Irish, purportedly, and since any prudent wheelman carried a revolver (they even made a special cartridge called the .22 Velo Dog) it gave them an excuse to jail any Italian not imprudent enough not to pack his trusty dog-dispaching bulldog wheelgun.

    Early automobiles might have been internal combustion, steam, or electric, of course, but by WWI and the invention of the electric starter, electrics and steam died out. But bicycle technology greatly improved prospects for making both successful automobiles, and some other form of transportation that a couple of bicycle mechanics from Dayton pursued for a while.

    Replies: @S

    Thanks for the intriguing history surrounding the bicycle (ie velocipede). I had not been aware of the specially developed anti-canine Velo dog guns and ammunition, though it makes sense. One has to be prepared for all comers when cycling!

    The velocipede/bicycle is very much an unheralded major component of the technological transition from the horse and buggy to the automobile, motorbike, and as you allude, even the airplane.

    If oil had not been quite so easily accessible and economical, it makes for a fascinating ‘what if’ alternative history regarding the bike.

    As things were actually developing, sans all that oil, with the creation of the ‘safety’ bicycle (ie the modern bicycle) in the latter 19th century, and their economic mass production resulting in the ‘bicycle craze’ of the 1890’s, the 20th century could well have evolved into ‘the century of the bicycle’ instead of ‘the century of the automobile’.

    Alas, we’ll never know.

    Some examples of velocipedes in Washington DC (1886) and from a German encyclopedia (1887):


  175. @Desiderius
    @Flip

    Texas has its share of Germans as well.

    Replies: @Flip

    Yes, and Czechs.

  176. @Prester John
    @Steve Sailer

    Don't forget Dulles, which is outside of The Beltway. JFK is similar to LAX I think. JFK and LaGuardia are within the NYC limits and Newark is just across the Hudson River from Manhattan. I am surprised that there haven't been more air collisions. By the way, pilots HATE LaG because of all the gyrations they have to do in order to land (I hear that Lindbergh in San Diego also sucks for pilots).

    Replies: @William Badwhite

    By the way, pilots HATE LaG because of all the gyrations they have to do in order to land

    Not trying to be all Corvinusy with a reflexive contradiction, but it depends on the pilot. Some like LGA (and DCA), its fun hand flying the airplane a little bit and keeping your skills sharp. It takes some skill to arrive at a certain place at the right altitude and the right airspeed. The pilots that don’t like flying more challenging approaches (and by “more challenging”, I mean “only slightly more challenging – for example the river visual to 13 at LaGarbage requires a slightly more than 90 degree turn typically at 3,300 feet…BFD) tend to be the pilots without a lot of confidence in their skills or that have gotten overly dependent on automation.

  177. It’s OK to be Happy.

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