Dave Richards for August 22nd…………
--Well, I sure am glad that eclipse stuff is over for another 7 years! I can easily wait that long for the hubbub to return. In 2024 the path of totality starts over Mexico, passes over Texas and heads toward the northeast, passing over cities like Buffalo and then out over the Canadian Maritimes. It reminds me of the Carly Simon song “You’re So Vain”. In that song there is a line which goes “you flew your Lear Jet up to Nova Scotia to see the total eclipse of the sun.” People will actually be doing that in April 2024, I think. Well, maybe not with Lear Jets.
The most remarkable thing I took away from the event was that scientists can actually calculate this event with the precision of minutes. If you study the solar system and the cosmos at all, the enormous difficulty of just predicting it hits you with a realization that although mankind has progressed to this point, it still cannot change what will happen in any way. This simultaneous realization of our significance and insignificance can boggle the mind.
So now that it’s over for a while, was it worth it? I suppose the answer to that question depends on whether you like that kind of thing. Are you the kind of person who goes out of doors to watch meteor showers, or the space shuttle or International Space Station pass overhead? If so, an eclipse would be something you’d be interested in experiencing.
While millions of people watched in one way or another. I can report to you that hundreds of millions of people didn’t bother. I suppose that puts the whole thing in perspective.
--This just had to happen. President Trump worked in his first days in office to attempt to save money for the government. But he is costing the government more money than most chief executives have………for security.
The latest report is that the U.S. Secret Service is out of money. The more than one thousand agents working on Presidential Security have already cost more than the federally-mandated caps for salary and overtime allocated for the entire year of 2017 and it’s still only August. The reason given is the substantially higher costs for protecting Mr. Trump and his family compared to his predecessors.
The Secret Service says they are protecting 42 people during the Trump Administration. By comparison, Mr. Obama’s protection list numbered only 31 individuals. That’s nearly 30% more people. Add to that, Mr. Obama’s young children did not travel internationally in the same way as Mr. Trump’s adult children do and the fact that Mr. Trump has 4 different residences he visits, and he goes to one of them nearly every weekend, not Camp David, which has all security in place, as other presidents have done.
It is easy to understand why all the money is gone in the Secret Service budget. Of course, there’s not much we or they can do about it. We can’t actually tell the president not to go home on the weekend or to tell his kids to stay put. Nor can we decide to not protect them, since they would become targets in ransom schemes to extort either money or certain actions from our president. No. There’s no choice about that.
So let’s just pony-up the dough and hope for the best. A thousand agents. Talk about boggling the mind!
--Before I go, I just wanted to congratulate the Autumnfest Steering Committee and their Parade Committee in their choice of the URI Marching Band as the Headliner Band in this year’s Autumnfest Parade. “That Ram Marching Band” is not only a top band representing our own University of Rhode Island (which is observing its 125th anniversary) but sports a number of top Blackstone Valley musicians in their group!
You don’t get more local than that, I can tell you. What a great idea! Not announced yet (but it will be soon) is the name of the person who will be Grand Marshal of the parade. Save the date: Monday October 9th. The parade will start at the Woonsocket Plaza, proceed down Diamond Hill Road to Social Street, turn left and disband shortly after reaching the entrance to Autumnfest at World War Two Veteran’s Memorial Park.
I love summertime. But Autumnfest makes losing summer totally worthwhile.
--That’s what I think. What do you think? Comments to: email@example.com or postal mail to Dave Richards, WOON Radio, 985 Park Avenue, Woonsocket, RI 02895-6332.
Thanks for reading!