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Friday, February 10, 2017

Today's Nonsense News

There's real news, fake news and now "nonsense news".

Nonsense news is a report that is so speculative as to be a waste of time to even read.  Reuters came out with one such report of nonsense news today as it touted an internal "report" at the Department of Homeland Security that estimated the cost of a border wall and the time needed to complete it.

Without a doubt, the issue of cost and time for a border wall are issues that merit consideration.  The problem, however, is that no decisions have been made on the type of wall, its location, its method of construction, or the schedule that would be followed.  That means that an internal document from DHS, if it is indeed authentic, couldn't possibly tell us the cost or the schedule.  It's as if a developer got a memo from a staff member saying that if he built a 50 story office building on a site, it would cost X and take Y years.  That's interesting, but if the decision is to build a 20 story residential building, those estimates would be meaningless.  Remember, all we know is that President Trump wants a "wall" but he also has said that in some areas a fence would be fine or even a series of surveillance measures without a barrier.  (For example, there is no need to build a wall over the top of some impassable mountains.)  Calling something a "wall" doesn't tell you much about it.  Consider what it would cost to add a "bathroom" to your home.  It could be a small room with only a sink and toilet, or it could be a large room with a whirlpool bath, a steam shower, two sinks, a toilet, etc.  Needless to say, the time and cost would vary depending on what gets built.

One thing that no one can dispute is that President Trump understands construction and how changing plans can change both the cost and the schedule.  It is ludicrous for Reuters to make a big deal out of an supposedly real internal document that hasn't even been accepted at DHS and which has certainly not been even considered at the White House.  The story is total nonsense.

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