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      A while back EU foreign-policy chief Josep Borrell said “Europe is a garden.” He was fairly widely attacked, but I agree. Some parts are much less of a garden, but Europe is a garden. However, Europe’s status as a garden is based on factors which are no longer true: 1) Vast military superiority. 2) Vast productive superiority 3) Vast technological superiorit […]
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Bangladesh, Philadelphia. Who cares? What’s really important are those totalitarian cyclists.

I’m kind of surprised the building collapse in Philadelphia yesterday that killed 6 people isn’t getting more attention.  One of the buildings that collapsed was scheduled for demolition and appears to have been improperly assessed for safety and structural risks before the demolition was given the green light.  The building took down part of the Salvation Army thrift store next door.

Color me unsurprised.  I’ve driven through neighborhoods in Philadelphia where whole streets full of row houses look like  they are on the verge of collapse and I am not exaggerating.  But this catastrophe happened in Center City which you would think is a bit more upscale.

Anyway, 6 people dead is more than the number of dead in the Boston Marathon bombing, although, presumably, there are fewer lost limbs.  But still, you would think that this event, which foreshadows more tragedies from neglect and underfunding of services, would get round-the-clock coverage and the kind of hysteria only terrorism can generate.  Oh sure, it’s front page news but where’s The Lede?

Our infrastructure, transportation system, civil service and buildings are getting to be third world quality.  But to the extraordinarily wealthy and powerful, we might as well all be living in Bangladesh.  Does this kind of tragedy even merit a “Oh, those poor people!” from them anymore or are they so wrapped up in their psychotic anger over rental bikes and rail/tunnel expansions that they are becoming self-parodies?  Are they so determined to keep things comfortable for themselves that the rest of us are forbidden from moving forward?

What’s wrong with rich people these days?  Are they so full of their might and power that the rest of us are no longer have free will or are human?  Aren’t slaves unable to protest their conditions or change their lives?

Le Sigh

Basel, Switzerland

Just got an email about a user group meeting for an application that I used to use regularly.  The meeting is in Switzerland and the agenda looks really good, including some things that I haven’t tried out yet. As I mentioned before, more and more of these kinds of meetings are now being held in Europe.  I suspect Pharmageddon had something to do with that.  The research groups in the US who used to attend these meetings stateside are either non-existent, have cut back severely on meetings or simply can’t afford it anymore.  Europe is where the money is for the software licenses so that’s where the meetings are these days.

For three days in Switzerland in September, I would sacrifice my comfort and fly coach. Alas, I am le poor American.

Maybe I could stowaway in a SwissAir wheel well and forage…

I know, I know, it sounds like a first world problem- until you think about it for awhile.