de Vos: Survival of the effete
March 10, 2016
The Cold War started right after WW II ended. It pitched the USSR against almost everybody in a tense, saber-rattling period that was greatly aggravated by a superabundance of atomic bombs. The war raged cold for over four decades ending in 1991 with the collapse of the USSR.
In retrospect, the Cold War was a relatively stable and mostly peaceful time, certainly compared to today. Back then, everyone feared and hated the Russians, leaving less time to fear and hate one another.
Nonetheless, it was a scary time. Contractors worked overtime building backyard bomb shelters, while school kids had Atom Bomb safety drills that consisted of crouching under their desks with their hands clapped over their ears.
So what do Congress and a cockroach have in common, beyond scurrying for cover when you shine a light on them? A military secret buried deep in the Allegheny Mountains neatly answers that question.
White Sulphur Springs is a small community in the mountains of West Virginia. It's home to the old-old-money Greenbriar Country Club. The Greenbrier was a privately-built resort for snobbish east coast elite. Twenty-six presidents and simply oodles of royalty have stayed there. Suffice to say, it's a nicer and pricier than most Red Roof Inns.
The Greenbriar is far from any military targets. When the Second World War broke out, the government requisitioned the country club to hold captured foreign dignitaries in order to trade them for our own VIP's and diplomats held by other nations.
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In 1958, President Eisenhower negotiated with the owner of the Greenbriar to build a 112,544 square foot bunker, 60 feet below the resort, designed to house Congress safely during a nuclear attack. The construction of the bunker was disguised by the building of a new wing of the resort. The extra dirt became the resort's second 8-hole golf course.
Sparse accommodations? Not our Congress! For more than 30 years the place was stocked with personal amenities right down to hair tonic. All prescriptions written for Congress were duplicated and kept current in the bunker. There were radio and television studios with patriotic backgrounds so Congress could inform un-incinerated donors that Congress was safe and comfortable, but immensely concerned and worried about the fate of their personal investments.
For three decades, the 7,500 square foot kitchen stored enough food for 1,100 people for 40 days. When the food reached its expiration date, it was disposed of and replaced. There was a 12-bed hospital with an intensive care facility manned by military doctors and surgeons, again, for 30 years. 28,000 gallons of diesel and 75,000 gallons of drinking water were kept fresh at all times.
Considering the number of military, resort staff and townspeople who knew of the underground facility, it's incredible that its existence was a complete secret until outed by the Washington Post in a 1992 story that many considered treasonous.
Congress would have been comfy cozy while the world blew up and mankind bubbled away into sulfurous smoke. That's not an unfathomable thought. Think President Trump in command during the Cuban Missile Crisis.
Scientists tell us that the only animal life that could survive an extensive nuclear war would be the cockroach. So when Congress rolled away the stone from the entrance to the Greenbriar, the only ones to greet them would be the newly-radiated species of roaches.
Despite similarities and mutual interests, undoubtedly the Roaches would refuse to mate with Congress, leaving humankind to suffer forward with Congressional offspring.
Darwinism gone wrong – survival of the effete.
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