Recollections of a Vanished Era in Montana PDF Print E-mail
Written by Leroy W. Demery, Jr.   
Thursday, 01 December 2011 00:00
By Leroy W. Demery, Jr.

We came across an interesting narrative of life in the (former) smelter town of Anaconda, Montana. The excerpt below is from a Facebook page titled “Anaconda Streetcars.” The writer, “Lorene,” describes a childhood experience during the years immediately following World War II.

First, a bit of background: Copper ore, mined in nearby Butte, was smelted at Anaconda from 1883. The Washoe (or “new”) smelter southeast of town was opened in 1902 and became the the world’s largest non-ferrous metal processing facility. The Anaconda smelter was closed in 1980 and demolished. The location is now a large “Superfund” cleanup site. The single remaining structure is the huge smelter chimney (known locally as “the stack”).

The Anaconda Street Railway was built to provide transportation to the smelter, and opened on September 1, 1890. The Opportunity line, described below, was opened in 1915 to serve a residential community southeast of Anaconda. This was built by the mining company for employees who wished to live away from the bars, bordellos and smelter-generated pollution of Anaconda.

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Of Privacy, Dubious Understandings, and Libber-tarian Blather PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Saturday, 26 November 2011 00:00
By Leroy W. Demery, Jr.

Imagine my surprise this morning (2011 October 9, SBB PST Time) when I spotted a quote by the self-styled “Antiplanner” and realized that - heavens to murgatroyd - I get to accuse (snicker, snicker) the one and only (thank goodness for that)... ell, prevarication, or at least dubious understandings.

Yes, there is a serious point herein, but that won’t stop me from having a little fun - at O’Toole’s expense (snicker snicker), performance near end by baseball great Jay Buhner).

My vote for “Best Libber-tarian Blather of the Day” goes to the following: Isn’t security camera footage taken by a public agency public information?

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On Libertarian Logic: Retarding Science PDF Print E-mail
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Monday, 28 November 2011 00:00
By Leroy W. Demery, Jr.

With reference to smoking, it pays to remember that "popular wisdom" at least in some circles held that smoking was "bad." This was true decades before the 1964 Advisory Committee report to the U.S. Surgeon General. There's a line in Rudyard Kipling's novel "Captains Courageous" - first published in 1897 - that demonstrates this.

It also pays to remember that the advisory committee's findings were not accepted "immediately." I can remember hearing about contradictory studies to ca. 1975. Later, secondhand smoke became an issue because of research results - but look how long it took for laws prohibiting smoking in bars and restaurants to be enacted. The European Union is still working on this.

Although he'd probably argue against this vigorously, I think that David Godow--a research assistant at the Reason Foundation--uses science to justify what he wants to do (or not to do) - rather than make public policy decisions based on science. In other words, typical "Libber-tarian."

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 23 November 2011 19:27
Personal Rapid Transit? In Korea? (Part 1 of Series) PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Monday, 07 November 2011 18:15
Personal rapid transit? In Korea?

So said J. [John] Edward Anderson, the well-known personal rapid transit (PRT) advocate - more than 13 years ago.

We commented about this story in 2005 (Personal Rapid Transit Non-News). We bring this up again because a colleague has provided documentation.

On Thursday, January 30, 1997, several individuals addressed the Minnesota Senate Transportation Committee on the subject of personal rapid transit (PRT). One of these was Anderson.

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Táiwān High-Speed Rail Passenger Traffic Statistics - to 2010 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Monday, 07 November 2011 18:56
We present annual passenger traffic statistics for the high-speed railway line in Táiwān in the tables and figures below. This compilation extends from 2007, when Táiwān opened its first dedicated high speed railway, to the most recent years for which data are available.

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