To The Eagle:
At last we have a sequel to the fascinating, cliff-hanger Saga of the Sewer to Nowhere. The gravity-defying engineering project slated to be our greatest future tourist attraction, the Cathlamet Uphill Sewer System (CUSS), has hit a challenging snag. Attempting to burrow under SR4 on its journey up the mountainside, it ran into a large boulder, a totally unexpected phenomenon in this sandy, loamy valley. The powerful Bureau of Transport and Alchemy was able help initially by levitating bedrock up and down, but attempts to bypass the boulder were thwarted when it was discovered that diagonal sewer crossings under highways are totally prohibited by immutable laws of physics and nature (see Harry Potter and the Highway Dementors).
Not to worry, though -- we'll just proceed with Plan B for a mere $93 grand which is pocket change; only three to four hundred bucks per Cathlamet family unless they hornswoggle the county into paying like they did with the Sewer to Nowhere, in which case it's practically free.
Meanwhile, back at the ranch, our candidates for the various offices, both county board and PUD, recite platitudes about tight budgets and scarcity of resources without ever acknowledging that there are several scenarios brewing, both political (Iran nuclear capability and Obama's cyberwarfare leak) and natural (tsunami, earthquake, storm) that could leave us without electric power for extended periods of time. In other parts of the country that means deaths from temperature extremes. Locally it means that our sewer system will run backward or not at all, and our water supply would be feeble to nonexistent -- all while we are being inundated with fresh clean rainwater which occasionally floods our valleys, and which we have made no preparations whatsoever to catch or use.
Two weeks ago, a farmer in southern Oregon who was smart enough to build two catchment ponds (mainly to combat the threat of forest fire) was hauled off to jail for taking Emperor Kitzhaber's rainwater. There are similar laws on the books in Washington. To straighten out the mess that our electric grid and petroleum supply are in requires a regime change in Washington D.C., but our water and sewer problems can and should be handled right here at home. All we need is awareness of the problems and a large dose of applied common sense. Memo to Tom Paine: Call Wahkiakum!
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