Catastrophic Flooding, Alpine Disasters

Harvey: Flooding in the Houston area and the Texas Gulf Coast is now described as “catastrophic” with more rain continuing this week, a storm total of as much as 50 inches forecast in some areas.

City streets have become deep rushing rivers. Hundreds and possibly thousands of people were forced to wade through floodwater to reach high ground. Rescue boats, bass fishing boats, jet skis, and inflatable rafts were used to pick up residents at their front doors.

The Brazos River, which floods at 43 feet, is predicted to peak at 59 feet this afternoon, bringing further destruction. Water is being released from reservoirs, adding to the flood.

At least five deaths have been attributed to the continuing tropical storm. The National Weather Service tweeted, “This event is unprecedented & all impacts are unknown & beyond anything experienced.”

The economic damage to the region is expected to reach into the billions of dollars, and the ferocity of the storm throws doubt on the wisdom of re-investing in the Gulf Coast area. That’s down the road. Right now we’re not doing recovery,” FEMA Administrator Brock Long said in a TV interview. “We are deep into the life-safety mission, swift-water rescue, search and rescue.”

Some areas may not be habitable for weeks or even months. Economic recovery is likely to take years.

World: Five out of six mountain climbers roped together died in an accident near Krimml in the Austrian Alps. The sixth was airlifted to a hospital.

There’s been a rash of bad accidents in climbing. In a separate accident, three Italian climbers died on a glacier in the Ademello Brenta Park near Trento in the Italian Alps. Two died falling into a crevasse, and a third who was rescued died later.

On Saturday, an Italian climber died after he was hit by falling rocks in the Valtellina valley near the Swiss border. — The State Department confirms that Christopher Allen, an American journalist covering the war in South Sudan, was killed August 27th along with 18 other people during fighting between government troops and rebels in Yei River state. Allen was a freelancer working for several news outlets. He was reported to be in a barracks with rebels when government troops attacked.

The Russia House: In an interview with the NY Times Book Review, British spy novelist Ben McIntyre says veterans of British intelligence believe the Russians have some kind of dirt on President Trump, what’s known in the spy world as “kompromat.”  He says, “So they end up, the theory goes, with this compromising bit of material and then they begin to release parts of it. They set up an ex-MI6 guy, Chris Steele, who is a patsy, effectively, and they feed him some stuff that’s true, and some stuff that isn’t true, and some stuff that is demonstrably wrong. Which means that Trump can then stand up and deny it, while knowing that the essence of it is true. And then he has a stone in his shoe for the rest of his administration.”

The Obit Page: Tobe Hooper, the horror director who brought the world “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” and “Poltergeist” has died at age 74.

Shot for $300,000, the 1974 “Chainsaw” became a cult classic with the masked killer Leatherface cutting up his victims to the sound of his buzz saw. Hooper said, “When you can’t see his face, your imagination goes wild. When you can’t see, you fill in the blanks with something that’s far more interesting than what can actually be shown.”

The American Pastime: Japan hit three home runs in the final game to beat Lufkin, Texas 12-2 for the Little League World Series championship. Japan has won five out of the last eight series championships.

The Award Goes To: The Video Music Awards were held last night in Inglewood, Ca. Some of the women wore clothes.

Tired of Winning: With the country’s 4th largest city enduring a Biblical flood, President Trump assured the nation by Twitter that, “I will also be going to a wonderful state, Missouri, that I won by a lot in ’16.”


Sunday, February 18, 2018

Page Two

Jaw Meet Floor

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

The Small President

Thursday, December 15, 2016

The Cuba Diaries

Sunday, March 13, 2016

An Alphabet of Maladies

Friday, February 26, 2016

The Healthcare Confusion Act

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Freedom from Speech

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Too Big to Fire

Friday, June 19, 2015

More Probable Than Not

Thursday, May 14, 2015

It's Been Said

" 'The enemy of the people,'" was what the president of the United States called the free press in 2017 ... It is a testament to the condition of our democracy that our own president uses words infamously spoken by Josef Stalin to describe his enemies. It bears noting that so fraught with malice was the phrase 'enemy of the people,' that even Nikita Khrushchev forbade its use, telling the Soviet Communist Party that the phrase had been introduced by Stalin for the purpose of 'annihilating such individuals' who disagreed with the supreme leader."
Arizona republican Sen. Jeff Flake speaking on the floor today.

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