Grateful to city help retrieving stolen items
Recently my daughter-in-law’s car was broken into. She had unfortunately left her wallet in the car.
Whoever broke in took the $2 that was in the wallet and proceeded to dump her license, Social Security card, bank card, etc., down the storm drain. She called the police to file a report. You could see her items in the sewer drain.
The police made a call. A city truck showed up and a crew lifted the grate to the sewer so she was able to retrieve her items. I just wanted to say a big thank you to the police and city workers who helped her.
Stop wasting time on Benghazi hearings
I can see why the Republicans are in a mud hole.
I, and a few of my friends, are the only ones that followed that story on Benghazi. Forgotten, even by the media, is the ambassador who was asked if he needed more security. He claimed he didn’t. So maybe the terrorists must have been spying and attacked couple of days later.
There are pressing things needed to be done. To keep bringing up Benghazi makes most of us want to vote for a third party.
Liberals need to have more of voices heard
I would like to commend Mr. Paul Sator for his Oct. 18 letter “Conservatives not short on hypocrisy.” If Mr. Sator is actually a conservative as he claims in his letter, then he is an enormous breath of fresh air coming from the conservative world.
I have wondered for decades about the blatant hypocrisy of modern so-called conservatives. Mr. Sator seems to be able to see the obvious double standards that conservatives have held for at least the last 40 years. Liberals, like myself, continually wonder where are the conservatives who actually understand what that term means.
Republicans have called Democrats the “tax-and-spend” party for over 30 years. Yet every time they get into the White House and control Congress, they routinely outspend the Dems. The only difference is they spend it on different things, i.e.: the military, defense contracts, war, tax breaks for big business and the rich etc. How can a party (the Republicans) say that spending $233 billion on the F-35 fighter jet program — now more than three times over budget, six years behind schedule with no projected end in sight, and the most expensive weapons program in human history — should be part of a conservative agenda?
Anyway, my kudos to Mr. Sator for all the points in his letter and may I add that if a conservative can write a letter like this to a media outlet, where are all my liberal brothers and sisters? Come on, speak up. Stand up and be heard.
When you read newspaper and magazine editorials, there is always a three- or four-to-one disparity of conservatives to liberals. Or, our future might consist of a new right-wing, Bible thumping president waiting for Jesus to tell him what to do about the Iranians. Stand up, liberals. Be heard.
Power to the people. Not Wall Street.
Get control of drones before it’s too late
It seems to me most strange that our lawmakers are so slow and or blind to drones — drones everywhere and plenty of ships to sink, or poison the water we drink.
There is the potential for drones being used/misused for everything from terrorism, safety concerns, privacy issues, delivering your pizza and UPS packages and much, much, more.
These issues should be one of the primary concerns for our lawmakers, while they still have a chance to be out in front of the hundreds of thousands to millions, of civilian drones that will be in the air in the near future.
Unmanned drones have been around for decades, primarily for military application. They lacked the technology, sophistication and cheap price tag to put them in the hands of civilians. That has all changed in the last few years. This new generation of drones has the capacity to carry a hefty payload of (let your imagination run wild) cameras for spying, invasion of privacy or a scenic view of the Grand Canyon.
Currently, there are little to no restrictions of the airspace they can fly in. Or those regulations are unenforceable, as is witnessed on a regular basis by the news media (landings on the White House lawn, accidents involving cars and pedestrians, near misses by commercial airlines; the list goes on).
Now the Christmas season is approaching, and there are estimates that over 1 million of the little beauties will be arriving under Christmas trees all over the country/world. Sen. Charles Schumer, the Federal Aviation Administration and a handful of others have introduced a bill for federal registration.
This coulda, woulda, shoulda, too little, too late type of thinking is a recipe for catastrophic consequences. It does not take into account ability, responsibility, mental disposition, background checks, liability insurance or a host of other issues that need to be addressed.
If this issue is not addressed sooner rather than later, one drone could make Sandy Hook and all like shootings look like a bunch of 5-year-olds in a cap-gun fight without caps.
Climate predictions based on old science
In his Oct. 25 letter [“Be wary of climate change predictions”] to The Gazette, Mr. Joseph Nial cautions us to be mistrustful of global warming predictions. He mostly cites popular press articles and books from 40 years ago and more, and claims that climate scientists of the day were predicting “global cooling,” or even a new ice age. Those are common claims of global warming deniers, but at best they are ridiculous misrepresentations.
If one actually looks at scientific articles of the time, some papers discussed Earth’s periodic orbital and spin variations that set the pace of past ice ages. The variations could, over thousands of years, bring on the next ice age from our present interglacial period.
Other papers discussed the cooling effects of atmospheric aerosols, mostly from burning sulfur-rich fossil fuels such as coal. Still other papers discussed possible global warming as a result of increasing atmospheric greenhouse gases.
However, in the 1970s, a lot was unknown about the climate system and there was no clear consensus. Since then, science has progressed. We have better tools, better computers and models, and vastly more information. What is important is what we know now, not back then.
Switching to more recent times, Mr. Nial also claimed that there has been no warming in 17 years. This claim is also false, as any review of, for example, NASA and NOAA climate data compilations will show. Indeed, the top 10 warmest years on record are all from 2003 and 2014, except for one in 1998. Oh, and 2015 is on track to displace 2003 from the top 10, and may become the record holder itself. We’ll know in two months.
The writer is a member of the Geology Department at Union College.