Monday Morning Open Thread : Before the Deluge

(Jackson Browne and Joan Baez.) Hurricane Sandy is expected to hit landfall today. Let us know how your are doing.

At least you don't have to deal with this group in charge:

Please send good thoughts to the inmates at Rikers Island and MCC Manhattan and MDC Brooklyn, and the thousands more in local county jails in the affected regions..

This is an open thread, all topics welcome.

< Sunday Night: Hurricane Sandy and Open Thread | SuperStorm Sandy: Power Outages and Flooding >
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    Are you ready? (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by ruffian on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 06:22:41 AM EST
    Joss Whedon on Romney....really good...

    DC: Still Quiet (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by koshembos on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 07:06:56 AM EST
    So far so good, the rain is moderate and no wind sound penetrates the closed windows. So far, forecasts were at least 24 hour behind. Saturday evening rain appeared Sunday evening. The weather map on local TV is much worse than the one on my PC and outside.

    Hope the damage will be limited, no injuries and everyone dry and warm.

    This is a large storm and moving (none / 0) (#5)
    by Slayersrezo on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 08:00:32 AM EST
    Very slowly.
    That's pretty much the "worst case " scenerio. Winds here in Maryland are expected to get stronger throughout the day and reach 70 plus in bursts by midnight tonight.

    Damage is probably inevitable.


    Oh, for the love of whomever... (5.00 / 2) (#14)
    by Anne on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 11:51:56 AM EST
    while the Weather Channel may be focusing on NYC, and the local station concentrating on, of course, the local conditions, I am now being treated to the stylings of a "special report" from NBC, where I'm getting the idiotic comments of the team - Matt Lauer, Chuck Todd and Dancin' David Gregory - who just can't help putting the political spin on this storm as they bring us Obama speaking from the WH.  You know, "the opportunity, only a week from the election, to show how presidential he is."

    Wonder if they'll mention that Mitt Romney has advocated for the dissolution of FEMA, and how that might be going over in the middle of this gigantic storm.

    What a bunch of unmitigated wankers.

    Obama just said... (none / 0) (#16)
    by magster on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:09:21 PM EST
    ... I'm not concerned about the election right now. Hopefully he's full of cr@p, because if that were true, then this is a big storm.

    I think he has to say that, don't you? (none / 0) (#21)
    by Anne on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:25:51 PM EST
    I mean, the last thing people need to sense is that he's disconnected and starts to remind people of Bush pre- and post-Katrina - has anyone forgotten the photo of him dispassionately looking out the plane window?

    His administration HAS TO do a good job with this storm, and I think that's going to require a certain amount of focus.  And the governors of the affected states have that same imperative, because I think blame for poor performance is going to start local before it goes national.

    The bad news is that in MD, early voting that started on Saturday with great turnout, has been cancelled until further notice due to the storm and the desire to keep people off the roads.  I don't know what happens if there are power outages lingering into next week and some precincts are unable to operate the electronic voting machines.

    Winds are definitely picking up here, and we've had about 4 inches of rain so far - and the worst hasn't even hit yet.

    Sure hope this isn't a sign of the winter to come; if this were snow, it would be Snowpocalypse all over again.


    Yes and no... (none / 0) (#36)
    by magster on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 01:19:06 PM EST
    Remember McCain said this 4 years ago in the financial meltdown catastrophe and Obama was like "I can walk and chew gum", and that arguable sealed the deal for Obama.

    Nothing like that from Obama now. Romney is cancelling events too so it likely won't be an issue.


    BTW: hope you ride out the storm OK. (none / 0) (#37)
    by magster on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 01:20:15 PM EST
    Easy for me to talk about the politics of this from sunny Colorado...

    The difference is that 4 years ago (none / 0) (#73)
    by indy in sc on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 05:38:48 PM EST
    Obama was not the actual president at the time of the crisis (and neither was McCain) and no lives were in immediate danger.  The reason that John McCain's response to "suspend his campaign" doomed him was because he acted like he was crucial to a deal getting done.  

    Mitt Romney has no official role this time around.  If he announced suspending his campaign, it would be a joke.  President Obama canceling a Florida appearance makes sense because you don't want to have the visual of the mid-atlantic and north east getting pummeled (and potential loss of life) while the President is off accusing Romney of "Romnesia".  He made the right decision.


    While channel surfing (5.00 / 2) (#74)
    by NYShooter on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 06:06:10 PM EST
    I saw a reporter, standing at the sea shore, wind really blowing, ocean viciously churning, so during his attempt to be heard over the racket
    a pop-up came on and stated:

    Wow, great timing; not what he wants to emphasize in the middle of a hurricane I'll bet.

    Now Romney's saying he won't get rid of FEMA (5.00 / 3) (#92)
    by Angel on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 09:34:09 PM EST
    when elected.  

    But he's also got a new ad up saying that Chrysler is moving its Jeep production from Ohio to China, which is not true.  Big Dog said today that claim is "...the biggest load of bull in the world."  

    I hate Mitt Romney. He's a pathological liar and will do anything, and I mean anything, to get elected.  God save us.


    Expect snow afterwards (none / 0) (#39)
    by CoralGables on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 01:27:27 PM EST
    Even in Miami the temps dropped about 15 degrees after Sandy passed, and you are supposed to have a convergence with a cold front in the northeast with the outlook being wind and rain and then ice.

    The president's focused upon ... (none / 0) (#45)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 02:18:05 PM EST
    ... the response to the storm. The polls are such that any perceived performance which serves to remind voters of the guy who said "Brownie, you're doin' a heckuva job" as New Orleans was allowed to drown, would undoubtedly sink him.

    So, yeah, I'd offer that (a) this is indeed a very big storm, and (b) Obama's making sure that federal agencies are properly prepositioned to respond rapidly in the wake of the storm's passing, because that's part of his job and he's currently under a national performance review.


    Hey, Anne - did you ever consider ... (none / 0) (#79)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 06:33:04 PM EST
    ... that perhaps Hurricane Sandy is but part of God's wrath being visited upon our country for our promotion of the homosexual agenda?

    Well, I wouldn't lose any sleep over it tonight if I were you, because it looks like Pastor John McTernan, the founder of Defend and Proclaim the Faith Ministries, is busy losing all that sleep for you -- and somehow also manages to link it all to previous attempts to bring about peace between the Israelis and Palestinians.

    Truly, a right-wing crackpot moment if ever there was one.


    FWIW (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by NYShooter on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:27:18 PM EST
    NYT & WSJ....The "pay walls" have been taken down for this storm

    NYT says for storm coverage. (none / 0) (#24)
    by oculus on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:30:50 PM EST
    Is the Arts section accessible for free?

    From The NYT (none / 0) (#26)
    by NYShooter on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:35:57 PM EST
    To Our Readers:

    "The Times is providing free unlimited access to storm coverage on nytimes.com and its mobile apps."


    Yes. (I subscribe. Just curious.) (none / 0) (#28)
    by oculus on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:40:34 PM EST
    I just noticed that and clicked on this: (none / 0) (#41)
    by shoephone on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 01:31:31 PM EST
    The real American economy: Part-timers, working and getting poorer.

    Make special note of the the brilliant retail maven who happily tells the reporter that modern employees are "like sharecroppers" -- and that it's really best for everyone!


    Maybe this link will work (5.00 / 2) (#42)
    by shoephone on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 01:35:41 PM EST
    The article

    This is what happens to workers when unions are eviserated.


    Our mandatory evacuation got revised this (5.00 / 2) (#34)
    by vml68 on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 01:01:26 PM EST
    morning. It is now only mandatory for the ground and first floor residents. They asked those of us on the second floor and up to stay home or go to a relative/friend's house. They do not have the space to accomadate everyone at the shelters.
    I feel a lot better about my earlier decision to not evacuate. I always get annoyed when I read about people who won't evacuate when told to or do other extremely high risk things and then put other people at risk when they have to be rescued. I was feeling tremendous guilt at being one of "those" people. Feeling very relieved right now.
    The wind has picked up with some strong gusts but only light rain as of now.

    Get an old-fashioned phone. You know, (5.00 / 1) (#46)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 02:22:00 PM EST
    like from the 1980's-1990's that only have one line that plugs into the telephone outlet on your wall. iow, they don't have a separate power cord that plugs into an electrical socket.

    When the Northridge quake turned our world upsided down, and the electric was out for much of the night, the only information/contact we had with the outside world was through that old-fashioned phone.

    And, unless I'm mistaken, many areas (none / 0) (#51)
    by easilydistracted on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 02:37:17 PM EST
    issue emergency reports via robocalls to landline phones rather than cell phones.

    Probably so. (none / 0) (#59)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 03:07:28 PM EST
    After the quake hit in the middle of the night, pitch black, no electricity, it was relatives back east who called us and told us what they were seeing on the news regarding the quake.

    If there are going to the major power outages for days, perhaps, as has been forcasted, being able to call and be called may be a life-saver...


    More voter fraud committed by the GOP (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by shoephone on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 03:08:20 PM EST
    Riverside County Republicans secretly flip Democratic voter registrations to Republican.

    How unusual. More illegal election shenanigans from the Creeptastic Party.

    We may not always take our (5.00 / 1) (#66)
    by KeysDan on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 04:09:27 PM EST
    local politicians seriously, but living in hurricane country, we always take the weather seriously--especially the seas.   Skeptics are understandable,  but cynics reminds me of that teenager who is first to go in those slasher movies.  "Hey, I don't hear anything, that noise is just the wind, what do you think that is, a monster or something? I'll  just go out in the woods and show you."  oops.    

    Just lost power so will check in later. (5.00 / 2) (#76)
    by vml68 on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 06:19:56 PM EST
    Want to conserve the battery on my Ipad.

    WOW, Check this out (5.00 / 4) (#90)
    by NYShooter on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 08:23:58 PM EST
    from Gov. Chris Christie:

    "Mr. Christie said Mr. Obama had called to make sure he had everything needed from the federal government and left a number to call him directly at the White House should any unmet needs arise.

    "I appreciate that call from the president," Mr. Christie said. "It was very proactive. I appreciate that kind of leadership." (bold mine)

    Suck on THIS, Mitt.

    Feeling a little guilty to be enjoying (none / 0) (#1)
    by ruffian on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 06:13:22 AM EST
    the first beautiful Florida weather in months. Was outside nearly all day yesterday and I have to say it was marvelous.

    But here is Sandy for the Jersey girls and boys.

    Stay safe everyone.

    The (none / 0) (#4)
    by lentinel on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 07:39:28 AM EST
    NY TImes reports today,

    Hurricane Sandy grew stronger before dawn on Monday as it churned northward through the Atlantic Ocean en route to what forecasters agreed would be a devastating landfall, possibly within 100 miles of New York City.
    (My emphasis)

    Is it really necessary to shut down the entire transportation system of New York City for a storm that might "possibly" have a landfall 100 miles away?

    I am not advocating that anyone ignore warnings.

    But I am always suspicious of blowhard politicians jerking us around as they strut their stuff and phony concern for our welfare.

    Thankfully, we don't have Brownie - but we do have Bloomie.

    I saw Bloomie addressing the microphones yesterday.
    I was so impressed to see him dressed in shirtsleeves- the outfit of choice for concerned politicians. A sure sign that he is working hard - probably helping to pile up sandbags outside Gracie Mansion.

    Much of the NY subway system is .. (5.00 / 1) (#52)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 02:44:58 PM EST
    ... below sea level. Why in the world would you needlessly place people at risk by running the trains during a hurricane?

    It makes perfect sense to shut down the entire transporation network. You certainly don't want people out and about in the middle of this storm, if it indeed comes as advertised -- and as I noted yesterday, one should always err on the side of caution in times like these.

    Your constant stream of caustic remarks, which repeatedly denigrate those public officials such as Mayor Bloomberg who are quite obviously under a tremendous amount of stress right now, is both tiresome and wholly unnecessary.

    Please feel free to parse and critique Hissoner's job performance AFTER the storm passes. Right now, in the face of a looming public threat, I'd suggest that you and other New York residents let him do his job, and further pay attention to his directives that you should look pro-actively to your own safety and well-being.

    After all, I'd really hate to think that anything should somehow happen to you, and that your lasted posted words would be "That Bloomie -- what a d*ck!"



    Or Worse... (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 04:36:11 PM EST
    ...someone else buys into it and ends up suffering the consequences of those flippant remarks.

    Donald, this morning I heard something on the TV about typhoon hitting Hawaii, but now I can't find anything.  Is anything going on or did the Today Show get it wrong ?


    I think you've said this before (none / 0) (#6)
    by Slayersrezo on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 08:02:39 AM EST
    I don't know if it's "necessary" they close these things down.
    But it's almost certainly prudent.
    And this is a large storm (if you haven't been, you know, paying attention) with sustained heavy winds that extends over an area of around 800 miles.
    What's 100 miles out of 800 among friends?

    It's (none / 0) (#7)
    by lentinel on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 08:44:09 AM EST

    I have been ranting un peu.

    What annoys me especially is that, for example, the drains in Manhattan are totally inadequate and have been so for years.
    Nothing has been done to improve the situation.

    So, even if there is a normal moderate to heavy rainfall, the streets are flooded and traffic begins to crawl. One has to leap from the sidewalk over enormous puddles to get to the street.

    And the subways...
    When it rains, it pours.
    That is to say, water comes spilling down from gratings or whatever. It is like being in a disaster zone - even in normal conditions with moderate to heavy rain.
    Water also comes sloshing down the staircases where it lays there for the weary traveller.

    In other words, things are a mess in normal conditions. And nothing is done to fix them. So, when an "emergency" happens, it takes very little extra to totally turn everything upside down.

    We never see Bloomie, or Barrack or the unlamented W. or Mitt in shirtsleeves unless they are either campaigning or responding to a disaster. So it is a boon for them to be able to do both simultaneously I'm sure.


    They Were Saying... (5.00 / 2) (#8)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 10:17:19 AM EST
    ...that a lot of this was being done to get New Yorkers to leave.  Apparently some of the electricity sub station are located in low areas, and that was related to the subway system.  meaning they had to close that and use sandbags to try and ensure the entire electrical grid isn't compromised.  Because unlike many coastal cities, NYC is especially as risk without power because of the high densities of people.

    And as much as the political blowhards love this stuff, the fact that all the airlines are pulling their fleets away from 800 mile hit zone, and they are saying this might be the worse storm to ever hit America.  Which leads me to believe that this is going to be far greater than political hot air.  And they even mentioned that when it hits the cold front, there is going to be a ton of snow dropped inland as well.  All of this adds up to people not having access to a lot of goods needed to live.

    I would certainly heed to the warnings and if it turns out to be a bunch of BS, go after them then.  And the political boon you describe can turn just as quickly into a political disaster, see Brownie & Co.  Obama could easily lose the election, especially with Romney and Co waiting to report every single error made, see Fox News in regards to Benghazi.


    Hope the nuclear plants are better... (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by magster on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 11:32:51 AM EST
    ... prepared for flooding than in Fukushima... protected generators, pre-emptive shutdowns, etc.

    Good point (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by NYShooter on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 11:44:57 AM EST
    The nuclear plant in Buchanan (Peekskill) is just a few miles North of NYC, right on the Hudson River. The river doesn't overflow its banks often, but since it's an estuary and not actually a "river" and rises and falls with the Ocean tide, it does happen. The combination of an almost full moon, and natural high tide, adding to the torrential rain this thing is supposed to deliver, The Hudson is gonna overflow to never before seen levels.

    Not a comforting possibility.


    We are about 800-900 feet from the waterfront (none / 0) (#29)
    by vml68 on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:49:38 PM EST
    and I have never seen the water levels this high before. Not even during hurricane Irene.

    Might you change your mind and leave? (none / 0) (#30)
    by oculus on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:54:51 PM EST
    See my post #34. (none / 0) (#35)
    by vml68 on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 01:05:20 PM EST

    One of the reasons (none / 0) (#49)
    by fishcamp on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 02:27:37 PM EST
    the water is so high is the full moon tonight.  Combine that with the strong East winds blowing tons of extra water towards land and you have big floods.  Not sure why hurricanes seem to land during the highest of tides but they sure do every time down here.  I have been through about 15 hurricanes since I moved here in 1999.  Not all of them hit the keys or even Florida but a few hundred miles away is still bad.You probably don't have hurricane shutters which in truth are flimsy things but they do deflect flying tree limbs.  I would advise taping the windows facing East with masking tape so you won't have flying glass shards if something does hit your windows.  A few X crosses with tape help.  Buenas suerte.

    Saw some photos (none / 0) (#50)
    by nycstray on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 02:31:51 PM EST
    of the closed subway system. Looks like they had a bit of work ahead of them to secure it before the storm/flooding. Also, the storm is 500+ miles wide. It's hitting the shore across several states in tandem.  Did you really want them to wait until flooding started before they shut down?

    When they talk about landfall... (none / 0) (#93)
    by unitron on Tue Oct 30, 2012 at 02:52:29 AM EST
    ...they mean the area over which the eye of the storm will eventually pass.

    But this thing is up to 1000 miles wide.

    Which means that when it passes south of NYC to avoid Jim Cantore and then turns north again just west of NYC, NYC is going to be subjected to first the northern part of the storm and then the eastern part without ever getting a short break like the places where the eye passes over.

    And it's a slow mover with very low pressure, so that's going to mean lots of wind and lots of water for NYC, so that 100 miles away from the center is not going to do them any good.


    Infrastructure, power grids... (none / 0) (#9)
    by sallywally on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 10:21:38 AM EST
    wind farms.... When will the nation start dealing with this? When enough people lose power for long enough?

    Obviously, never with the Republicans.

    Wind-energy industry is feeling dismal (none / 0) (#33)
    by Towanda on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 01:00:34 PM EST
    as I know from a family member, awaiting this election.  There already have been sizeable employment losses in the industry, with the looming end to the wind-energy subsidies to keep it competitive with other fuel industries, all subsidized even more.  Romney opposes wind energy, of course.  And there is not a firm sign from Obama that, if re-elected, he would push Congress to continue the subsidies.

    Family member, who already had to move once within this country to get away from an anti-green governor and go to a friendlier state, now is looking at possibly having to leave this country -- again -- to stay working in the industry.  (It's more than a career; it's a cause for her.)

    And that would mean my firstborn leaving, too -- and that would mean major decisions for his mom as to whether to follow, too (or major costs and travel to try to keep seeing him a couple of times a year).  So I am very worried about this, either way with election results.  There is more hope for Obama to act -- but, again, with many layoffs in the industry already, not a lot of hope.


    They Have an Easy Solution... (none / 0) (#40)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 01:27:59 PM EST
    ...a 'clean' coal plant on every corner.

    Speaking of, what do they do with wind turbines in a hurricane, do they produce a lot of juice of are they shut down ?

    Realistically, doesn't seem like you can do much, either the power lines are above ground and subject to down trees, or they are underground and subject to flooding.


    In NYC they have some hydro power (none / 0) (#43)
    by nycstray on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 01:37:45 PM EST
    be interesting to hear what they are doing with that also re: storm.

    wind turbines in a hurricane (none / 0) (#48)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 02:26:04 PM EST

    They shut down and feather the blades if the wind speed is too high.  Wind turbines are no good if the wind is too slow, or too fast.  Coal and natural gas are both much more reliable and less costly as well.

    Define... (5.00 / 2) (#56)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 03:00:25 PM EST
    ...less costly.  Wasn't really looking for the Fox News angle on this one.

    He just can't seem to (none / 0) (#58)
    by Zorba on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 03:05:35 PM EST
    help himself, Scott.   ;-)

    I Was Disappointed That... (none / 0) (#63)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 03:32:48 PM EST
    ...he didn't include a pretty chart link.

    Speaking of, I guess the largest storm, or so they say, has absolutely nothing to do with global warming.  I guess they just get bigger each year because of god's will.  Apparently it gets madder and madder each year because of those pro-homosexual candidates.


    Your assertion that "they get bigger" (none / 0) (#95)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 08:07:28 AM EST
    Less costly (none / 0) (#96)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 08:22:37 AM EST
    Sorry, I did not think "less costly" was a concept so complex that it needed further definition.

    Here are some comparisons.

    BTW, if wind were truly less costly, then the massive subsidies and mandates that industry gets are clearly not needed.  Simply instruct the various public utilities commissions to set the rate for electricity at a low enough level so that the power companies choose the low cost solution.


    Of Course Not... (5.00 / 1) (#97)
    by ScottW714 on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 01:38:44 PM EST
    ...your a republican, apparently the only costs that matter are the ones you realize.

    What are all the costs ?  A few I can think of, the costs associated with burning fossil fuels and the pollution they create, the costs of mining/drilling those fossil fuels and the effects they have to the food change and drinking water, the costs/risks of transporting these fuels.  Nearly all Superfund sites are energy related, and those are costs that you and I subsidize.

    You are a smart guy, quit acting like the cost of any energy source is the electric bill.  Because if if you don't buy into global warming, surely you know pollution adds significant amounts to health care costs to people near these plants and mines.  I forget, don't insure them, then no costs to you, it's a freebie.


    You are correct (none / 0) (#98)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 02:05:19 PM EST

    Higher electric bills hit the poor the hardest resulting in less money available for food, clothing, and shelter.  That means early death for many in order for the politically connected wind companies can make a killing.  A killing quite literally.  

    As long as you are adding up costs, have you bothered to figure the external costs of high priced energy?



    Lordy (none / 0) (#99)
    by sj on Thu Nov 01, 2012 at 11:22:50 AM EST
    ...this cr@p is tiresome.

    How did you survive until adulthood?  I understand that once reached it is likely your lovely bride that sees to your continued survival, but still...


    Not so fast (none / 0) (#47)
    by Rojas on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 02:23:36 PM EST
    Texas has the largest installed wind base in the country with almost 2.5 times the nameplate capacity of the next highest state.
    They are expanding the grid at a rapid pace because the installed base outpaced the ability to utilize it because it was not sufficiently interconnected with the rest of the state and/or country.

    On the other hand, like so many of their siblings, this generation of Texas wasted no time selling off it's publicly traded utility built on investments spanning over a hundred years to the quick buck artists.

    For its part, TXU was hardly a company that needed rescuing by the brightest minds on Wall Street. It was minting money in the partially deregulated Texas energy market, and in 2006 alone it generated about $2 billion in cash, after it paid interest on its debt and other bills, according to Moody's.  

    The buyout group also sought friends in high places. It signed on several powerful Texas politicos as lobbyists, directors or advisers, including Ronald Kirk, the former mayor of Dallas who is now the Obama administration's trade representative; James A. Baker III, the former secretary of state and Bush family confidant, who was given a million shares as part of the buyout; Donald L. Evans, the former secretary of commerce; and Lyndon L. Olson Jr., a former Texas state representative.

    "They were hiring Democrats and Republicans alike," says Tom Smith, director of the Texas division of Public Citizen, a consumer advocacy group. "They would have hired a socialist if we had any in Texas."


    Probably jinxing us, but so far, no (none / 0) (#11)
    by Anne on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 11:37:25 AM EST
    loss of power...the longer we have it, the better.  It's raining pretty hard here in northern Baltimore County - we're about 20 miles or so from the PA line - and wind has picked up, with gusts stronger, too.

    Kind of annoying that the Weather Channel can't focus on anything but NYC; Accuweather has provided more localized reports, so have been checking in with them periodically.  I get that it's a huge population center, and a lot sexier to report on, but you'd think they could spend a minute or two talking about areas where the storm is actually in process.  Have to rely on local TV for that.

    No work today - they closed the office.  We're right across the street from the National Aquarium, which means the harbor waters are really close.

    So...just hunkered down and hoping for the best; we're at the top of a hill, so not worried about flooding right here, but during Isabel, we were kind of land-locked as lower-lying roads around us flooded.  The part I worry about are the trees - as long as the keep bending in the winds, we're good, but it's kind of scary to see how much swaying and bending they're doing.

    Hope all the east-coasters come through okay!

    Thanks Anne - I like the updates (none / 0) (#12)
    by ruffian on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 11:43:05 AM EST
    from other places. Good luck to you and yours!

    I'm sure it's annoying... (none / 0) (#15)
    by magster on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:07:48 PM EST
    ... but the pictures of Brooklyn, Atlantic City and the Hudson River in this Kos diary before the storm has even hit are ominous signs....

    In a bad sign for Romney (none / 0) (#17)
    by CoralGables on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:11:22 PM EST
    and a thumb of the nose at the Republicans reducing early voting times in Florida from two weeks to one, early voting wait times in Miami's poorer neighborhoods was over 3 hours yesterday and still at over two hours today.

    Last years souls to polls theme has been changed to a lemons to lemonade theme this year as early voting is pouring in. Wait time at the 20 Miami-Dade County early voting sites is between 45 minutes and 4 hours right now on a Monday afternoon.

    Won't closing down early voting in (none / 0) (#19)
    by oculus on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:20:20 PM EST
    some states due to the storm adversely affect Dem. turnout?

    Except (none / 0) (#27)
    by CoralGables on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:39:42 PM EST
    I think the only places in the Northeast with early voting are Maryland, Vermont, Maine, and DC. (NJ uses a no excuse absentee as it's early voting method)

    I wonder (none / 0) (#20)
    by NYShooter on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:25:12 PM EST
    what the "wait time" in the rich areas like Ponte Vedra Beach are? Or, do the polling booths come to their homes?

    That's it. Mobile polling places, (none / 0) (#23)
    by oculus on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:30:09 PM EST
    think ice cream truck.  

    Here are the computer models (none / 0) (#18)
    by CoralGables on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:19:38 PM EST
    for where
    Sandy will make landfall this evening

    Where the eye actually comes ashore is less important in a storm this size
    as the  most recent satellite picture shows

    Lights starting to flicker now, and just (none / 0) (#25)
    by Anne on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:35:24 PM EST
    got an e-mail from the office - closed today - that building management has been instructed to shut down the building's systems to guard against damage - no word on when (if?) tomorrow they might power back up.  I think this means office might be closed again tomorrow.

    This huge storm is going to be economically devastating to the Northeast.

    Snowing at my sister's place near Asheville, NC. (none / 0) (#31)
    by Angel on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:55:10 PM EST
    Yes, a lot of things (none / 0) (#32)
    by Zorba on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 12:59:52 PM EST
    even out this way, are closed today and tomorrow- schools, offices, businesses, etc.  We only have a whole lot of rain and some wind, so far.
    We should consider ourselves lucky, though.  They have issued blizzard warnings for west of Cumberland and the mountains of West Virginia.  They are saying they could get 2-3 feet of snow.

    My best to you, Mme. Zorba, and ... (5.00 / 1) (#53)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 02:51:35 PM EST
    ... to everyone else here who reside in the affected areas. I'm sending lots of good thoughts your way.



    Radio... (none / 0) (#44)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 02:05:56 PM EST
    ...I would figure out what station has the weather on the AM before power is lost.  Because even if lose all power, you can tune into the AM in your car.

    I remember spending a good deal of time in my vehicle, from getting the latest damage reports to charging phones, and here in Houston getting some AC, maybe heat for the northerners.  I also remember hearing the yappers on AM radio who were more worried about who was at fault, then giving accurate information.  I didn't know who to believe and with all other communications out, including phones, AM radio was the only source of outside information for several days.  I wished I had figured out who was going to be giving good information because doing it on the fly was not easy.  One side acting liker the world ended, blaming the other, and the other acting like it was a light breeze and that their systems kept everyone safe.

    HERE is a good map from NPR, one of the layers has the shelter locations in case anyone finds themselves in need.


    Good idea Scott... (5.00 / 1) (#67)
    by fishcamp on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 04:21:09 PM EST
    I also have a 12v coffee maker and have sat in my car several times making coffee when everything else has shut down.

    Two Words (none / 0) (#71)
    by Rojas on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 05:02:21 PM EST
    French Press

    Two more words... (5.00 / 1) (#72)
    by fishcamp on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 05:20:56 PM EST
    hot water

    Dos Mas (none / 0) (#77)
    by Rojas on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 06:23:49 PM EST
    Buddy Burner

    Uno mas
    propane, charcoal, wood..


    correcto compaņero... (none / 0) (#86)
    by fishcamp on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 07:41:25 PM EST
    compaņiero that is... (none / 0) (#88)
    by fishcamp on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 07:47:35 PM EST
    What does Le Monde have to do with it? (5.00 / 1) (#78)
    by DFLer on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 06:27:36 PM EST

    We have (none / 0) (#57)
    by Zorba on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 03:02:08 PM EST
    a hand-cranked radio, which gets AM.  That way, we don't have to go out and start the car, although that's a good thought for those many without a battery-driven or hand-cranked radio.  

    The Vehicle... (none / 0) (#70)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 04:50:56 PM EST
    ...was our only cell phone charger.  And while phones lines were out for a day or two, the phones used a lot more juice looking for a signal.  Even though we weren't using the phones, they needed charging like we were.

    I know it sounds nuts, but no one in our camp of maybe 15 people had a radio that didn't plug in.  Stupid hipsters and yuppies, got every gadget on the planet but not one GD radio.


    Yes, I have a car (none / 0) (#81)
    by Zorba on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 06:49:41 PM EST
    charger for the cell phone, too, although cell phone reception is terrible here, anyway.  I can get a weak signal, at least enough for emergency purposes, in the attic, though.
    Nobody with a battery-charged radio?  Maybe not, these days.  Who has a boom-box or Walkman any more?
    Well, I do, along with the hand-cranked radio, so I have several ways to listen.  (Do they even make boom-boxes and Walkmen now?  Mine are older, but still work.)

    I still have a battery-powered radio (5.00 / 2) (#83)
    by Towanda on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 07:27:37 PM EST
    It's my shower radio!  Small, handily hooks to a belt as easily as to a faucet.  I've resorted to it in many a blizzard or tornado power outage.

    And I still have an old boom box. (5.00 / 1) (#84)
    by caseyOR on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 07:30:07 PM EST
    It's from the '80s, but put in some batteries, and it's good to go.

    Yep, come to think of it, we still have one, too (none / 0) (#94)
    by Towanda on Tue Oct 30, 2012 at 06:53:27 PM EST
    and so, I say, so there! to my children who are trying to get us to throw away things -- so that they do not have to do so.

    Battery-powered radios and boomboxes (5.00 / 1) (#85)
    by shoephone on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 07:30:42 PM EST
    are still on sale at my local drugstore (they carry everything though, even nice wines and food items). It's a good idea to always have one. And, while I'm not in hurricane zone, the NW windstorms can knock out power for hours here in the forest. Even lost power (briefly) last night.

    Good luck to you and Anne and Slayer in Maryland. And to vml and the rest of you in the northeast...stay close and warm and let us know you're ok when you can!


    We still have electricity here, (5.00 / 1) (#89)
    by Zorba on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 08:00:40 PM EST
    Although many closer to the coast have lost theirs.  Still raining here, basement very wet, but not enough water to bother turning on the pump.  Getting colder and colder outside- snow seems like a very real possibility.  
    Sandy is so huge- I am awe-struck when I look at the weather channel satellite pictures.  
    It makes me realize how puny humans are in the face of what nature can do.

    Zorba, glad to hear you are safe and sound, (5.00 / 2) (#91)
    by caseyOR on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 09:14:14 PM EST
    relatively speaking, of course.

    It sounds like you are better prepared and provisioned than anyone except maybe the military. Still be careful, and keep us updated on how you are doing.

    I'm am quite worried about everyone in the storm zone. TL is like a little family, and I am especially concerned about members of the our TL family.


    NYT Opiniator blog on Romney ad (none / 0) (#38)
    by oculus on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 01:21:49 PM EST
    re auto industry:


    The best hurricane website (none / 0) (#54)
    by fishcamp on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 02:52:10 PM EST
    for me is stormcarib.com.  They always have the latest NOAA updates and long interpretations of the situation.  Scroll down to the lower big yellow box and click on Sandy.  

    Here's another good one (none / 0) (#55)
    by fishcamp on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 02:57:44 PM EST
    www.nhc.noaa.gov.  Click on the ir version of any categories and it really shows what's happening.

    For those totally bored today (none / 0) (#61)
    by CoralGables on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 03:14:54 PM EST
    there is video of a dangling crane in New York that, depending on the site offering info, is about 65 stories high and expected to hit the ground sometime this afternoon.

    This is from a rooftop camera so when it drops it will disappear from sight quickly. Scroll to the bottom to get the live feed

    power finally went out about 3 pm (none / 0) (#62)
    by Anne on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 03:28:00 PM EST
    Really raining and blowing in earnest now. Will be in touch as I can!

    Good luck, Anne. (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by caseyOR on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 03:41:43 PM EST
    Be safe.

    Good luck! (none / 0) (#65)
    by Zorba on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 04:07:51 PM EST
    We still have power, but it's starting to get really cold outside.  I do believe, if this keeps up, that we will be getting some snow later, as the weatherman predicted.

    Just don't prepare like this Texas Aggie (none / 0) (#68)
    by easilydistracted on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 04:21:37 PM EST
    I bit of humor might help today.

    So much for "MOmentum." (none / 0) (#75)
    by NYShooter on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 06:19:17 PM EST
    As the Romney Spinners are running around touting their guy's "MO,".....

    From Nate Silver in today's Times:

    "This is the closest that we have come in a week or so to one candidate clearly having "won" the day in the tracking polls -- and it was Mr. Obama."

    wow (none / 0) (#80)
    by ding7777 on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 06:33:13 PM EST
    Soldiers continued to stand guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington Cemetary

    The Greatest Generation explains it all: (none / 0) (#82)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 07:02:35 PM EST
    Now, please don't be stupid and pi$$ 'em off. You have been warned.

    That is great Donald... (none / 0) (#87)
    by fishcamp on Mon Oct 29, 2012 at 07:45:52 PM EST