Things have settled down up here nicely. The tourists and bicycle types have gone back to Atlanta or Florida. Traffic is getting down to normal standards, and the weather is great. I've been spending a lot of time on the porch, enjoying the quiet and the forest. It's flannel shirt weather at last. We have been having a fire in the fireplace since things cooled off. Not so much because we need one, as it's just soothing.
Meanwhile, out on the left coast....
An example of why you can NEVER trust politicians of either party.
Three books I am not recommending, which you might like.
Remember , a long time ago, I recommended several books by James Kunstler? He's the arrogant, high and mighty "expert" from New England who was on a lot of the History Channel's documentaries about survivalist and apocalyptic subjects. He also wrote three very good non-fiction books on survivalist subjects, and a series of novels that were post apocalyptic. Some of them, particularly the first, weren't bad.
But, he detested Southerners. In his non-fiction books he couldn't run down the South and Southerners enough. The only thing he had good to say about the South, buried amongst pages and pages of anti-Southern screed, was that Southerners were inherently violent people, armed to the teeth and psychologically predisposed to fighting. In his novels, he portrays them the same way. They're not people you would want for neighbors but when the fewmets hit the windmill, they're handy to have around.
I think the guy is an (explicative deleted), but I still bought his books. My theory was that there were more than enough positive aspects to his work to override his own petty hatefulness. Besides, I am not naturally inclined to love people from his part of the country, myself, though I do have some friends there.
Now, I've run across another author that fits in that category. John Birmingham.
The man is an Australian citizen though he was born in England.
He wrote the following three books , a trilogy set, the last of which was published in 2012.
Basically, an unexpected catastrophe annihilates all of America except the Pacific Northwest and a few odd bits and pieces. The first book begins just as the U.S. is about to invade Iraq. This is "alternate history" which I usually don't read, but there are redeeming factors.
The author has some left wing political views, which cause him to develop characters and slants to his story that I don't like. Who needs a myopic moon bat from Seattle as President? Why is it that the author has to take thinly veiled (and some not veiled at all) cheap shots at the American South? Why is the story line so larded with heroic civilian leftards and evil, "knuckle dragging" military personnel? Sometimes, reading these books, I just wanted to throw them out the window. Since they belonged to the library, I resisted the impulse.
If you can get past these irritations, the concept of a world without America is pretty well developed. Birmingham also hits on something that is absolutely true, but most Americans don't realize. NOBODY out there loves us. Even our allies have some angst about Americans, and most of the world detests us. It's not just the Moslems who give out candy in the street and ride around tooting their horns when something bad happens to America.
His development of the continuing rise of Islam in Europe is right on the money, and what happens when the gloves come off seems to me both realistic and inevitable. If you can get over the lame nature of the precipitating event that starts off the story, the rest of it isn't bad.
If Birmingham hadn't been such a dip (explicative deleted) about my particular culture, I'd buy copies of the books for myself. But as it is, I will just return these to the library and not read any more of his work. Still, there's a lot of food for thought in the three books. They are big, thick volumes and I read all three in three days, so I can't say they aren't any good.