July 19th, 2005

Typhoon petering out

Originally published at blog.jameslick.com. Please leave any comments there.

This time we got off relatively easily. Our neighborhood didn’t get flooded, and the storm had mostly petered out by noon. It was calm enough that I went out to get snacks in the afternoon and there was just a bit of a drizzle. There was a lot of leaves and small branches and assorted garbage littering the street, and there were some motor scooters and bikes that got knocked over, but nothing seriously wrong in our immediate vicinity. The eye of the storm is just leaving the east coast, so while we may get some heavy rain yet from the tail of the storm passing through, but we’re probably over the worst of it.

Other parts of Taiwan are not so lucky. There was lots of flooding, rivers overrunning their banks, bridges washed out, signs knocked over, cars bashed in, etc. Fortunately there is nobody reported dead though, so that’s good news. Three things from TV stuck out about the storm:

When we go to Hualien on the east coast, we stay at the Parkview Hotel there. It’s close to the airport and fairly nice and modern. One of the nice features was the ground floor restaurant where we ate breakfast each morning. It was off the lobby in a large 3 story high atrium with huge glass windows surrounding the dining/buffet area. This is kind of a small picture, but it’ll give you an idea of what it looked like:

I use the past tense because the typhoon blew out all the windows in the atrium and completely destroyed the dining/buffet area. Hualien is more or less at the center of where the Typhoon made landfall.

A temporary construction trailer next to a parking lot was ripped from it’s foundation and hurtled 50 meters through the air to the other side of the parking lot, badly damaging three cars and crushing two others.

And on the lighter side, there was a hilarious video of some farmers rescuing some bulls from flooding. They used a rope to pull the first bull up out of the water and as soon as he gets out he runs straight at the camera, just missing the camera operator, and as the camera swings around the bull is running into the street which is covered by quite a bit of water and then fwoop, he loses his footing and lands on his ass.

In somewhat related news, burglars took advantage of the typhoon to rip off a Gucci store on here in Taipei, taking off with a large stash of high end purses, shoes, etc.

Typhoon updates

News is now reporting there are some people killed by the storm, so we didn't get off so easy after all. The numbers vary depending on which channel you watch though.

To give you an idea of the scale of the storm, Taipei got 641mm (25.2 inches), and other areas got as much as 1273mm (50.1 inches) so far from this one storm. In just a couple of days. And it's still raining. In comparison, the average yearly rainfall in Santa Barbara is around 18 inches, and a storm that leaves 2 inches is considered big.

While today's forecast shows 100% chance of rain for most of the island today, in Taipei at least the rain is not heavy today.

More on Rove

The current claim by the Republicans is that Rove was told by a reporter that Plame is CIA, not the other way around. The funny thing is that he then turned around and passed this information on to the other reporters. And forget the fact that going around leaking a CIA agent's identity is dangerous no matter where you got that information. And now the White House says that only a criminal conviction would result in someone being fired.

I guess that whole 'values' thing the Republicans claim to have wasn't about honesty and responsibility. It turns out that 'values' is only about hating homosexuals and cutting taxes.

Only a few days ago, they were saying it would be inappropriate to talk about ongoing investigations, but now it's fine for them to float these new theories about what really happened. That and try to divert the issue by continuing to smear Wilson's reputation. They continue to claim that Wilson was a liar and his claims that Iraq didn't buy uranium were proved false. That's quite surprising, considering that the press has yet to cover the part where anyone was able to prove any truth at all that Iraq tried to buy uranium. Not a thing.

And then there's the part where they complain that the Democrats don't have the decency to let this scandal sit until the investigation is completed. Which is quite hilarious when you compare it to any of the Clinton scandals where the Republicans were out slamming on Clinton from the day he entered office until the day he left. Democrats have nothing to be ashamed of in not dropping this issue as long as the Republicans continue to spin the issue with deceptions and smears.

As long as there is any reasonable suspicion of White House wrong-doing, don't let the issue drop.

Typhoon updates

Originally published at blog.jameslick.com. Please leave any comments there.

News is now reporting there are some people killed by the storm, so we didn’t get off so easy after all. The numbers vary depending on which channel you watch though.

To give you an idea of the scale of the storm, Taipei got 641mm (25.2 inches), and other areas got as much as 1273mm (50.1 inches) so far from this one storm. In just a couple of days. And it’s still raining. In comparison, the average yearly rainfall in Santa Barbara is around 18 inches, and a storm that leaves 2 inches is considered big.

While today’s forecast shows 100% chance of rain for most of the island today, in Taipei at least the rain is not heavy today.