The wreck of a Norfolk Southern train two weeks ago caused a toxic mess for the 4700 people living in East Palestine, Ohio. (Here it’s pronounced Palesteen.) The derailed cars included ones carrying vinyl chloride. (This chemical is the basis for polyvinyl chloride which we all use every day as PVC plastic products.)
Railroad and government officials decided to burn the toxic liquids to avoid the possibility of exploding tank cars. Burning vinyl chloride produces phosgene, a highly lethal gas.
This environmental disaster has contaminated the air, surface water and soil in the area, reaching across the border into Pennsylvania. While residents continue to suffer sore throats, runny eyes and other discomforts, government officials say their well water is safe to drink and air quality in houses is normal.
The issues with this derailment may take years to resolve. Maybe Norfolk Southern should offer to buy the whole town. Or at least buy out any property owner who wants to leave.
Tomorrow is Presidents’ Day. We used to have Lincoln’s Birthday (Feb 12) and Washington’s Birthday (Feb. 23), but Congress lumped ALL Presidents into one holiday which is always on a Monday.
It honors all 46 Presidents. When a few folks find out this celebration includes Joe Biden, they may get so upset they’ll refuse to buy a new mattress at half off. With Biden’s inflation, it may be higher than the full price 3 years ago.
President Jimmy Carter, who is 98 years old, is in Hospice Care. He was elected President in 1976 after the Watergate scandal forced President Nixon to resign in 1974. He has been outstanding as a Past-President for 42 years, working with Habitat for Humanity and for other civic causes. He and Rosalynn Carter lived their strong Christian faith. He has set a standard of service that may never be matched by future past-Presidents. We pray for comfort for him and his family.
Historic quotes by Will Rogers: (about our Presidents)
“There wasn’t any Republicans in Washington’s day. No Republicans, no Boll Weevil, no income tax, no cover charge, no disarmament conference, no luncheon clubs, no stop lights, no static (radio), no head winds… My Lord, living in those days, who wouldn’t be great?” DT #803, Feb. 21, 1929
“Lincoln’s famous remark about ‘God must have loved the common people because he made so many of them.’… You are not going to get people’s votes nowadays by calling them common. Lincoln might have said it but I bet you it was not until after he was elected.” WA #82, July 6, 1924
“Coolidge made less speeches and got more votes than any man that ever run.” DT #673, Sept. 21, 1928
“I always did want to see [Herbert Hoover] elected. I wanted to see how far a competent man could go in politics. It has never been tried before.” Radio, Apr. 30, 1930
“(Franklin) Roosevelt wants recovery to start at the bottom. In other words, by a system of high taxes, he wants business to help the little fellow to get started and get some work, and then pay business back by buying things when he’s at work. Business says, ‘Let everybody alone. Let business alone, and we’ll get everything going for you, and if we prosper, naturally the worker will prosper.’” Radio, June 9, 1935