Open Thread for Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Let’s see what we have to offer today:

Russians have many theories about the MH17 crash. One involves fake dead people. — You know, the Rodina must be a very interesting place to live. This story compiles some of the wacky alternative explanations of the crash that are given credence by Russian media or influential websites.

Two Ukrainian Warplanes Shot Down . When this broke this morning, the first AP bulletin said:

Which caused me to react, “As opposed to CIVILIAN fighter jets?” Yeah, I know. The AP is being deliberately redundant in order to make sure the reader doesn’t misread it and think it’s another civilian craft. But it still bugs me. Of course, “fighter jet” is pretty redundant without “military” added. Think about it: Here in the 21st century, a fighter is highly unlikely to be a Spitfire or a Sopwith Camel. But maybe some countries still have some prop fighters. If so, I’d like to see them in action…

Israel Faces Rising Pressure to End Conflict in Gaza . And why, pray tell, is the pressure on Israel, instead on on Hamas, which started it, and insists on continuing? I suppose because Israel is more likely to respond favorably.

A Doctor Leading The Fight Against Ebola Has Caught The Virus — All I know about ebola, I learned from Tom Clancy novels. But that’s enough to make me shudder.

DSS: state needs 200 more child-welfare workers. I believe them. You?

36 thoughts on “Open Thread for Wednesday, July 23, 2014

  1. Kathryn Braun Fenner

    How about they caught the guy who.was hanging off a car on I-77, in a domestic violence deal. Actually, it turns out, so was the hanging off the car.

    The Gift of Fear. Give it to your daughters!

  2. Brad Warthen Post author

    Oops! Turns out that the U.S. Air Force just ordered some prop-driven combat aircraft last year when I wasn’t looking! Of course, they’re ATTACK aircraft, and not fighters, but still…

    We bought them for the Afghans, because “the Afghan military needs a simple, rugged plane that can carry lots of bullets and bombs and stay over targets for long periods of time.” It’s considered to be a counter-insurgency aircraft.

    Huh. For a moment I wondered why the A-10 couldn’t do the job, but I guess you need something different in an anti-personnel aircraft from what you need in a tank-killer…

    1. Silence

      Afghans neither need, nor could they maintain a fleet of A-10’s. Also, Fairchild doesn’t exist anymore, the production line was closed and sold off 30 years ago. Getting the tooling set up for a production run would be prohibitively expensive.

    1. Brad Warthen

      What I always heard was that the Air Force didn’t like them for the reason the ground-pounders loved them — they flew low and slow, and provided awesome close support.

      I remember watching them tooling around over the beach back when Myrtle Beach AFB was still open. When they turned they seemed to HANG there, practically motionless. It didn’t seem possible that they stayed airborne…

      1. Brad Warthen Post author

        I remember hearing, or reading, that when they fired the nose cannon — 4,000 depleted uranium slugs per minute — it felt like the A-10 was kicked backwards…

        1. Brad Warthen

          I also remember reading, at the end of the 1991 Gulf War, of Iraqi tanks with a single small hole from an A-10 punched through the exterior of the turret, otherwise seemingly undamaged — and nothing but death and destruction inside.

          A very effective weapon platform. But when your enemy has no armor, perhaps a superfluous one…

      2. Bryan Caskey

        Love the Warthog (A-10).

        The summer I lived in downtown Chicago, I saw the Air and Water show. It had everything from the super-cool B-2 to Apaches, to F-16s. I got to see it from atop my apartment building just north of Lakeshore Drive, and it was amazing. The aircraft that absolutely stole the show was the A-10, though. For all the other aircraft, they came and went, but the A-10 came in low and slow, and you really got a good look at it, up close. Also, some guys on the ground set up some pyrotechnics along the lake to simulate AAA against the A-10, along with some flares going off to simulate air-to-ground hits.

        The Hog’s flyby was the most “interactive” of the whole show. I’m sorry to see them go, as air-to-ground is kind of the whole point of air supremacy.

  3. Silence

    Yet another apartment development announced in Columbia. This time, it’s 300 units at the old Kline site. That’s a choice site, but how many apartments does Cola need? Where are all the new residents going to come from to fill up the 6,000 plus units either recently built, under construction, or announced?

    1. Doug Ross

      They all can’t be students… can they? When I think of downtown apartments, I think of students and/or childless couples or young working singles. But you don’t really want to mix those three groups.

      And what about the Palmetto Compress Warehouse? That hasn’t even started yet.

      1. Silence

        I’m sure that they aren’t all students, but a lot of them are:
        Kline Project will have 300 units, so maybe 450-600 students
        The Hub (Palmetto Center) will house 850 students.
        Behind the Colusseum will house 858 students.
        Ben Arnold/Park 7 (Huger/Blossom) development will house 640 students.
        Edwards Communities (near PCW) will house 700 students.
        Columbia Commons (no telling how many dorms/apartments/condos/dwellings)

        But jeez that’s a lot of new people who will need to come to town.

        1. Doug Ross

          I wonder if all the new apartments will end up causing a greater shift of the night time activities from Five Points to the Vista?

            1. Kathryn Braun Fenner

              I wonder who besides young people would want to live at that intersection.
              PCW has a hotel in the works, btws.

            2. Kathryn Braun Fenner

              Word is that kids say that when you turn 21, you can start drinking in the Vista. The a amateur bars in Five Points will abide, alas.

              The Vista actually has a far bigger gang problem than Five Points, now The Library is closed.

            3. Silence

              That’s the first I’ve heard of a Vista criminal gang problem. Of course I’m not suprised by much, anymore. Please tell me more about the proposed PCW hotel project?

            4. Doug Ross

              Yes, I am interested in the hotel plan as well. Will it have windows? Will it still look like a warehouse (kind of hard to sell that I would think)?

            5. Kathryn Braun Fenner

              I have “inside” information on PCW, but I don’t know much more than what I wrote.

              Jet Night Life and one other place whose name escapes me have had issues. There have been numerous events in the Carolina Gifts parking lot. No deaths or maimings, but significant stuff. The Vista is more porous than Five Points, with easy exits. Also, less press coverage. Vista Guild is all over the issue. Word is everybody likes Holbrook so far.

              The bars tend to be corporate, so have better ID scanners.

            6. Silence

              My inside information tells me that the inn at the PCW is likely to be either an: EconoLodge, Super 8 or Motel 6. It will be available by the hour, but will also have discounted weekly rates.

  4. Karen Pearson

    This ebola outbreak is worrisome. With so many people traveling these days, someone is bound to bring it here. And yes, I know, strict isolation and infection control procedures can bring it to a stop. That is, if you assume that both the public and the hospitals recognize it before it gets into the population less likely to get medical help, not to mention less likely to follow infection control procedures. And have you realized that we now have 3 confirmed cases of chikungunya in SC, one each in Pickens, Lexington, and Charleston counties?

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      The chikungunya cases are bad news, but SC is protected from ebola by the fact that it doesn’t travel well, if I understand correctly. It needs a friendly environment. Unfortunately for so many in Africa, ebola tends to thrive there.

      1. Karen Pearson

        It spreads by direct contact with bodily fluids of an infected person. Unlike AIDs, the person who has it is obviously sick. If it came into this country it would be courtesy of an international flight and a victim who was not yet showing symptoms. Possible spread could result if people who came to the aid of the victim, including friends and family members who were getting the person to medical help did not recognize what it was immediately.

          1. Kathryn Braun Fenner

            Here’s a question: if I see a road kill deer, is it likely to be edible?

            1. Silence

              If you hit it with your car and kill it yourself, yes. If you just come up on one, probably not. Check and see how swollen and bloated it is before making a determination. The last thing you want is to have finished loading some rigor mortis deer into the back seat of your Prius, only to have it explode, soaking the interior of your car with blood, guts, antlers and chronic wasting disease. A final word of warning: make sure that you have your roadkill deer processed at a state licensed and inspected facility.

  5. Phillip

    Your “headline” reads “Israel faces rising pressure” etc., to which you then comment on. But the article to which the headline links is titled “Kerry Claims Progress Toward Gaza Truce, but Hamas Leader Is Defiant” and goes on to speak of attempts to get all sides to at least agree to a cease-fire. In reading the article I don’t see what the “extra” pressure on Israel is, other than this FAA ruling about flights perhaps leading to some indirect consequences for Israel’s economy. Yes, Israel is being pressured, but so are the Palestinians, and if anything, the article’s headline refers to the greater intransigence of Hamas.

    One thing is for sure, and the great Israeli conductor-pianist (and tireless advocate for peace) Daniel Barenboim states this simply but eloquently: there is no possible military solution to this conflict, ever, by either side.

    1. Brad Warthen

      Phillip, the headline you see above is the one they had on the story when I posted this. Looks like they updated the story between then and the time you read it, with a new hed..

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