So far outside the box you can't even see the box from here.
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Wednesday, September 27, 2017
There's a lot of survivalist fiction that tries to depict what life would be like in a grid down situation. In Puerto Rico, that hypothetical disaster has become reality. The whole island lost power, millions are in the dark, and there's no firm estimate when it will be back.
Puerto Rico is in a strange place politically. It's a US territory. Its citizens are US citizens. However, they don't have the same rights that citizens in a US state would have. That puts the island in a sort of limbo. It's economic problems have been getting worse for many months. The way its government is set up, they have very little power to fix things themselves. For years the mainland has taken advantage of the island's status. Big businesses made a lot of money on the island and gave very little back.
It's history is important, but the main issue is what happens now. We have very spotty information on how bad it really is there. Communications are so bad that the governor himself can't reach most of the island.
What has come out doesn't sound good. Hospitals are shutting down as their generators run out of fuel. Emergency services are overwhelmed. A dusk to dawn curfew is in effect. There are stories of looting and violent crime. Authorities are stretched thin.
The United States, the richest and most powerful nation in the world, will be judged on how it reacts to the crisis. They are US citizens, just as deserving of aid as Texas or Florida. For that matter, don't forget the US Virgin Islands, another US territory in need.
If the emergency response isn't strong enough, Puerto Rico's citizens have only one viable option for a normal life. As US citizens, they are free to come to the mainland. Don't be too surprised of the vast majority of the three million residents leave the island. Get ready to welcome your new neighbors.
It may be days, weeks, or months before the general public has a firm grasp on the situation -if they are still interested. By then the nation will have moved on. We should not forget and help as much as we can.
Now imagine if there was a massive EMP or solar storm that knocked out the power in most of the US. It's a possibility. If we can't restore power to a couple of islands, how well would a nationwide blackout be handled?
I live in an area of NH known as the Great North Woods. I'm in my dome-i-cile out in the county with my lovely wife and a varying number of family and friends
-part red neck, part hippie but all country. Experimenting and enjoying the adventure of life.