The collapse of the Interstate Highway bridge in Minneapolis was due to (insert drumroll here).....
"structural failure". Gee. Really? I'd have never guessed. I'm sure Godzilla is pleased to know this won't be pinned on him.

It sounds like there are 20-30 persons still missing. Divers got called off today because the current was too strong and shifting debris was putting rescuers in danger. Not good.

There was some confusion about how many persons died. I heard up to 9 deaths. This morning the official count was brought down to 4 as the coroner only had 4 sets of remains. Apparently the various agencies working at the scene ended up double counting and the incorrectly inflated figures were reported. No doubt the number will rise as the recovery continues.

A difficult question:
How bad does something have to be before it gets fixed? This bridge was documented as being "structurally deficient" some time ago, but wasn't slated for replacement until 2020. I'm guessing that there will be a dramatic overhaul of the system shortly. Once again, a reactionary approach to things. I would like to see the government become proactive about some things, but I'm not sure that will ever happen. I guess it's just not cool enough or sexy enough to fix things before they're broken.

Another difficult question:
If the feds can miraculously come up with millions of dollars to fix everything, can they shuffle $100K to me to pay off most of my student loans? It's probably not a large enough sum of money for the feds to bother. I could tack on my mortgage and other debt, but that would be greedy. I find it interesting that there isn't money for repairing or maintaining infrastructure or for higher education or other useful programs, but if there's a disaster (or a war or both) there is miraculously money available and in large amounts. We're shooting ourselves in the foot folks. Trying to fix things after they've already broken is a losing proposition. It's not nearly as glamorous to just keep up with the maintenance. New building projects are much more visible and have more naming options available. The bridge that collapsed was 40 years old. The steam tunnel that burst in New York City a few weeks ago was closer to 100 years old. How old are the pipes carrying your tap water? Do they contain lead? Do they allow substances to leach into the water on the way to your house? How many other bridges need repair? Just how does the magic money system work? I'm really curious about that. I'm not begrudging the distribution of federal money in the case of disaster or emergency, just that there's never any money for the regular every day stuff.

Reduced Productivity
My little list of productive things to do last night didn't happen. I discovered that I made a boo-boo in my knitting. Two or three rows ago. So I have to rip it back one stitch at a time. Sigh. I might be back to where I was yesterday by the end of the night.

I also didn't get my updated resume sent off, though I did compose the update on my current job in my head. I need to go over the projects which are available and get that sent in. I also need to get my CDC EIS application underway.

On the other hand, I did get my meals planned for the next two weeks. I don't even need to buy groceries, just a few odds and ends. I like that!!!


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