Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Country Set on Fire: Brave Washington State Firefighters and Citizens Endure Hell, while Military Brass Sit on Bayonets

Clearly, our country is on fire all around the beautiful state of Washington.

Wildfires in Washington State
Credit: NASA MODIS Rapid Response Team, Jeff Schmaltz. Text: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Rob Gutro

"We have to be careful with fires caused by man." Tom Sherry, Weather Reporter, KREM 6:00 pm news broadcase Tuesday, August 18, 2015.

Mr. Sherry was using the term "man" inclusively, to mean humans.
So is Mr. Thomas Paine, author of Common Sense, the January 1776 pamphlet which ignited the American Revolution. Selling out, and requiring multiple reprints, Common Sense held this sentence, written by the Englishman who came to the American Colonies and made this country his beloved home. Writing about the British attack on American minutemen at Lexington and Concord on April 19, 1775, Paine compares the attack to a fire:

"But when the country, into which I had just set my foot, was set on fire about my ears, it was time to stir. It was time for every man to stir. "
"Thomas Paine, Common Sense Quotes." STANDS4 LLC, 2015. Web. 19 Aug. 2015. <>.

The sentence applies to Washington State, beginning with the first wildfire, or forest fire, in June, up to today, with fires raging across the state. Wildfires are igniting daily--whether from natural causes such as lightning strikes or from humans--and fresh air seems to be a blessing in the past. The air for this week has been smoky, dusty, unhealthy, from all the wildfires. So many people have lost their homes, and now tonight, news comes that three firefighters have died, with four injured with burns.
Three Killed While Fighting Washington State Wildfires
New York Times · 12 minutes ago
Governor Inslee said that 11 counties and four Native American tribes in Washington State are “affected or threatened” by wildfires, which have destroyed 50 homes, 60 other buildings and 235,000 acres of land. More than 3,600 homes are currently threatened by flames, he said
'Hellstorm': 3 firefighters killed, 3 to 4 others injured in raging Washington state wildfires
US News and World Report · 1 day ago
Space · 9 hours ago

Clearly, our country is on fire all around the beautiful state of Washington.

The writer of this post learned about the deaths in a manner only worthy of the theatre of the absurd. Turning on the television to local news at one channel, there was a moving "ribbon" at the top of the broadcast of an American talent show. The tiny letters were difficult to read, and for anyone who bothered to get up close to the television set, the news was horrible, about the dead and wounded firefighters. The most horrible part was the juxtaposition of the tiny "ribbon" letters with the glitzy talent production. Talent shows are wonderful things, but when our beautiful state is on fire, our air is unhealthy, and people are dying, then simple respect and prudence would seem to call for larger letters that are easier for people to read, and for a break in the program for a news update.

The other two news stations were just as bad, except one actually had moving ribbon letters that were large enough to read without standing in front of the television.

The firefighters who gave their lives, and the ones still fighting for their lives from injuries, deserve more than tiny letters at the top of the screen, moving so fast that it's hard to read. For people existing under the state of emergency, of evacuation, trying to get updated news asap, the broadcast must seem like the worst part of the Hunger Games, of out-to-lunch society ignoring the sacrifices, wounds, and deaths of people trying to stop disasters.
"One can do everything with bayonets except sit on them." Napoleon Bonaparte

So, where have our public servants in the armed forces been? There have been a few planes/tankers offered, and a vague promise of sending in 200 soldiers to help. However, given the thousands of American soldiers that some of our government servants shipped overseas to bomb and kill, the offer of a few hundred soldiers seems to be an insult, like offering a watering can to someone whose house and property are threated by fire.

So, it looks like Napoleon was wrong. The brass in Washington State are sitting on millions of dollars of equipment and resources at our army and air force installations. They've been sitting since the first fire in June, doing nothing.

If this editorial sounds angry, it is. Three brave firefighters died, needlessly, with four others hurt. With these fires ranging, no one needs a fortune teller to know that there will probably be more, among the firefighters and the citizens. Hundreds, perhaps now thousands of homes, are burning or threatened.

We can not and must not endure this situation. We can and must demand that our resources, including the military, are used to help and protect our beautiful state of Washington, and that the brass and politicians are awake, not groggy, that they are engaged and helping, and not dragging themselves to emergencies like drunks dragging themselves to work on Thursday after being "sick" all week.

"But when the country, into which I had just set my foot, was set on fire about my ears, it was time to stir. It was time for every man to stir. "

Here are some ways to make our beautiful Washington State safe for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. No one should have to lose a home, property, a loved one, in a fire. We have money and resources that are wasted on the sidelines. We owe it to the firefighters and the people who have lost their homes and sense of safety, to kickstart stalled government servants, and if they can't cut it, put in better public servants, who plan for these types of emergencies.

Contact Governor Inslee:

Washington State Legislature

American Congress

The White House
Call the President
Phone Numbers
Comments: 202-456-1111
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Write a letter to the President

Here are a few simple things you can do to make sure your message gets to the White House as quickly as possible.

1. If possible, email us! This is the fastest way to get your message to President Obama.

2. If you write a letter, please consider typing it on an 8 1/2 by 11 inch sheet of paper. If you hand-write your letter, please consider using pen and writing as neatly as possible.

3. Please include your return address on your letter as well as your envelope. If you have an email address, please consider including that as well.

4. And finally, be sure to include the full address of the White House to make sure your message gets to us as quickly and directly as possible:

The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
(202) 456-1414
Apologies if any of this post is wrong, or if anyone is wronged.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

FEMA Fiddles While "Region X" aka Beautiful Washington State Burns. US Tax Dollars Fund Wars, with Piddles for Firefighting.

What's wrong with this picture? Some "firestarter" servants in our US Government spend billions to start fires and kill people in other countries, with bombs, poisons, bullets, etc. But when part of our beautiful America is burning and people are suffering, groggy FEMA arrives late at the scene, and then doesn't help people.

FEMA Region X Regional Administrator Kenneth D.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has authorized the use of federal funds to help fight multiple fires around the state.
FEMA Region X Regional Administrator Kenneth D. Murphy has approved funds for the Reach fires.
At the time of the initial request, the fire was immediately threatening approximately 730 homes in and around the City of Chelan with the perimeter of the fire less than 200 yards from homes.

As American citizens, we are the power in this country.
We must tell our servants in Washington D.C. what to do.

PS. When did our beautiful country get labeled with only the letter from the alphabet?

Monday, August 3, 2015

Smoky Skies over Spokane, Washington from Wolverine Fire, August 1, 2, 3, 2015

Since the first weekend in August, Spokane has been bathed in smoke and orange haze.

KHQ in Spokane, WA noted on Aug. 2, 2015 that most of the smoke caught in Spokane is from the Wolverine Fire, northwest of Ione, Washington. Here's part of the report:
LUCERNE, Wash -            
"Update 1:00 p.m., Sunday: The U.S. Forest Service reports the Wolverine Fire burning on the west shore of Lake Chelan made significant growth over a 24 hour period. On Saturday night, an infra-red flight showed the fire had grown to 15,760 acres. The forest service said high temperatures and low humidity made for ideal fire conditions."

The air quality in most of Washington State is not good right now, and probably best to keep small kids and others who may be affected by smoke inside, with windows closed as much as possible. Here's info from Holden Village, which was evacuated:

"The Wolverine Fire has expanded to over 15,000 acres. High temperatures and low humidity are providing ideal conditions for active fire behavior. After a safe evacuation of the majority of Holden Village residents and mine remediation workers on Friday and Saturday, the stay-behind crew were also safely evacuated by helicopter due to the road being compromised and for their safety. ..
The Pacific Crest Trail detour is closed through Holden Village. Hikers are advised to contact the National Park Service office in Stehekin or the Forest Service office in Chelan for information.