Loyal Opposition – Thanks, Coach

Great Britain’s lawmakers (Parliament) who are not in the party of the country’s prime minister are known as “back benchers” or the “loyal opposition,” emphasis on “loyal.”

A brief column in this week’s Sports Illustrated (January 30, 2017, page 18), provides us with an excellent example of loyal opposition as stated by Coach Greg Popovich of the NBA’s San Antonio Spurs. An Air Force veteran, he offered his thoughts on the state of the union:

“I’d just feel better if somebody was in that position that showed the maturity and psychological and emotional level of somebody that was his age. It’s dangerous, and it doesn’t do us any good. I hope he does a great job, but there’s a difference between respecting the office of the presidency and who occupies it. And that respect has to be earned. But, it’s hard to be respectful of someone when we all have kids and we’re watching him be misogynistic and xenophobic and racist and make fun of handicapped people….

“….But I felt great today watching the march in protest [of] how he has conducted himself, because it tells me I live in a country where a whole lot of people care. And we have to be vigilant to make sure that, although we all hope that he does good things for our country, that we don’t get embarrassed by him and roll back liberties that have been worked for [for] so long.”

Thanks, Coach…….

Surprised By Numbers

First, an iceberg larger than the State of Delaware is about “…to break off from a giant ice shelf in Antarctica. It, the iceberg, measures 1,930 square miles. Source: TIME, January 23, 2017, p. 11.

Makes we wonder if Iceberg Delaware will be visible from the beach this year…..

Second, take a guess as to how many bombs the U.S. dropped last year. Hint: it was 3,027 more than in 2015.

According to an anlysis of Defense Department data by the Council on Foreign Relations, the total for 2016: 26,171. That comes to 12,192 in Syria, 12,098 in Iraq, 1,337 in Afghanistan, 496 in Libya, 34 in Yemen, and 3 in Pakistan. Source: ibid, p. 11.

Makes me wonder how many of those bombs hit targets that threatened the security of the U.S…..

Last, take a guess as to the combined total of nuclear weapons the U.S. and the Soviet Union had on hand during the height of the Cold War. Hint: it was in the tens of thousands.

The answer: seventy thousand. Source: The Making of the Atomic Bomb, Richard Rhodes, Simon and Schuster, Foreward to the 25th Anniversary Edition.

Makes me wonder how many are still ready to go if someone decides this planet has been around long enough…..