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Warren Stupidity's Journal
Posted by Warren Stupidity in General Discussion
Wed Nov 02nd 2011, 07:53 AM
When I was a child we used to laugh about the European phone systems, how unreliable, expensive, outdated and difficult to use they were, how their infrastructure was a mess of old and broken technology with hopelessly incompetent organizations running them.

I am now in the fourth day of the fourth major power outage in my region in the last two years. Our power and data distribution technology is based on a 19th century innovation, the telegraph pole. It was quite the thing in the 1800's, but it has many problems, especially in forested regions prone to wind and ice storms. Every tree within range of a telegraph pole has the potential to take down every downstream user.

All of our power and data utilities should be put underground in the densely populated outage prone regions. This is a major infrastructure project on the order of the investment we made in our interstate highway system from the 50's through the 80's. Along with underground distribution, there should be a 'fiber in every home' project on the order of what the Rural Electrification Project did in the 30's under the last populist progressive government of the United States. Had our current president any real vision, this would have been on that table that was set primarily for wall street back in 2009. But that is water under the bridge, or ice on the limbs of broken trees and downed power lines.

Pile onto the refusal to invest in our power and data infrastructure the fact that 'deregulated' regional power and data quasi-monopolies have consistently understaffed their maintenance operations and face no regulatory disincentives for failure to provide reliable systems. Back when AT&T was a regulated monopoly they were required to do just that: provide guaranteed reliability for the data network they held a monopoly on. We once had the world's best phone system, but that was a long time ago.

What a sorry bunch of stupid people we are. We've consistently voted ourselves into this neoliberal hell hole. We take solace in mindless jingoism, cheering on the latest high-tech assassination, accepting without question an endless war on a chimeric enemy that requires the looting of our national treasury, the abolition of our remaining constitutional rights, and the decades long disinvestment of our public sector. Our schools rot, our bridges and highways rot, our health care system is a mediocre cesspool of corruption, but we got us predator drones and military hegemony.

Good job USA!

Freezing in New Hampshire Again,
Warren Stupidity.
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