Monday, July 28, 2014

Amusing stuff seen on Facebook

Nope. Not cute memes with pithy sayings superimposed over images of cats in awkward positions. What's amusing me this morning is the latest (at least to me) offering in right-wing paranoia. The wingnuts really do waste an awful lot of energy yelling at clouds.

Today's specific example? A video of a freight train hauling "unmarked" military equipment "west." And this is proof of what exactly? In the right wing mind, it's probably more evidence of FEMA death camps being built in Nebraska cornfields or the Nevada desert. To a saner person, of course, it's just a freight train, a much cheaper method of shipping equipment than by truck, and thus evidence that someone in the Department of Defense actually does think about saving some money occasionally (and if they ever figure out who that person is, he or she will probably get fired).

In any case, once again I turned to the magic that is Google. It took me about a nanosecond to learn that the viral video was shot in California and that it was a perfectly mundane, run of the mill freight operation. The military ships equipment by rail all the time. New equipment gets shipped that way by the manufacturer; equipment currently being used will be shuffled from one Army post to another by rail; the National Guard will ship its equipment from armories to training locations via rail. No nefarious plots, no grand conspiracies, just business as usual. When I mentioned the freight train to the S.O., he got it immediately -- it's the logical way to haul a tank anywhere. A Bradley Fighting Vehicle is 12 feet wide and weighs quite a few tons. Hauling one by truck would require a specialized trailer (one with more axles than normal as well as a wider than usual trailer bed), possibly a specialized truck to pull that trailer, and two escort vehicles with the usual warning lights and signs regarding over-sized loads. Now multiply that by a more than a couple tanks and you can see why the military would prefer to travel by rail. No conspiracies; just common sense.

The really sad part is that the video my conservative friend shared this morning is over two years old. More proof, I guess, that even the lamest of conspiracy theories will never die.

It must be remarkably exhausting to exist over on the right wing end of the political spectrum. It's got to be tiring as hell to live your life in constant fear of stuff that's never going to happen or freaking out over really old news. If they'd spend even one-tenth as much time fretting about real issues -- crumbling infrastructure, for example -- the country would be a better place.


  1. It's got to be so tiring, constantly having to find ways to twist everything into your paranoid world view. I know I couldn't do it.

  2. I'm not sure how wide a standard railroad car is, 8 or 9 feet wide? I'm too lazy to look it up, why don't you research it for me.

    Did you see that post I did about five years back when I was standing on a RR trestle in Oregon when a train came along? Good thing there wasn't any 12 wide tanks on that train, that trestle wasn't very fucking wide.

  3. Yeah, it is just transportation; but it is more fun to spread conspiracies.
    the Ol'Buzzard


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