Monday, October 05, 2015

1537 Droning On About Drones

1537 Droning On about Drones

Look, up in the sky! It’s a bird… it’s a plane… it’s a drone… and it’s heading right for one of the props on that Bell Ranger helicopter the police department is using in a search for a missing kid.

If the drone hits right, they’ll widen the search for cops missing in a helicopter crash.  You wouldn’t want that, would you?

Oh, wait. Sure you would.  You’re waiting for your same day delivery of Wolfgang Flaymeril’s “50 Prize Winning Turnip Recipe’s.”  Can’t let a police helicopter stand in your way.  After all, you have dinner guests coming over soon and you wouldn’t want to disappoint them with, say, an ordinary turnip recipe.

Given what the instruments are, drone pipes and strings are fine on bagpipes and banjos.  In the sky, they’re menaces.

Pilots of commercial and private aircraft get distracted.  There’s always a chance one will be sucked into the business end of a jet.

Sometimes, the drones stall in midair and crash.

Governor Brown (D-CA) recently vetoed bills that would have prohibited drones in certain air spaces. He did so for good reason.  There already are laws like that in California.  Not that they’re followed or their violators prosecuted.

We’re not talking here about unmanned military planes that can do what military planes do without putting crew lives at risk. We’re talking about the little toy-like ones that everyone and his great grandmother are buying instead of radio controlled aircraft which are much cruder.

We’re not even talking about drones that work sky- high construction sites.

By one estimate, sales of the toys and other small drones will reach ten billion dollars a year soon.  We’re talking about stuff that costs from about $50 to maybe a grand or two each.

If the sales projection is accurate, our sky will soon look like a bat blackout.

Except the bats eventually go away. On their own.  And they have radar. And they don’t crash to earth.

Meantime, you could have ordered the Wolfgang book a few days early, saved a bundle on shipping cost and saved those poor rescuers from sudden and horrible deaths.

You feel you must be in control of something? And the kids won’t listen. The dog won’t listen, the parrot talks back, the computer has a mind of its own then get yourself a radio controlled toy car.  Or even better, exercise your fingers with the TV remote. It will listen and obey.

Shrapnel:

--San Francisco’s last remaining gun nuts are in mourning because San Francisco’s last remaining gun store is closing.  It isn’t for lack of sales, though. It’s because a new law would require them to video record every transaction and report ammo sales to the cops every week.

--They record us everywhere else.  In the supermarket, on the highway, in the bank, probably in the bedroom for all we know. So why not the gun store?

--The murder rate in Ireland and Northern Ireland appears to be rising.  Could that signal an end to the end of “the troubles?” These things never really go away.

I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
Please address comments to wesrichards@gmail.com
© WJR 2015



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