Editorial: Balloon woes

Published 7:23 pm Tuesday, February 7, 2023

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The United States military shot down a Chinese “spy” balloon somewhere near Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

Funny? Nope.

But we’ve had fun with it.

My favorite was: “Where was the sign advertising banana boat rides?” I’ve seen doctored photos of a Chinese food take-out box dropping, and plenty of comments, most of them funny, and like always, too many of them political.

If it was a spy balloon, why did the military wait until it had traveled from one end of the country to the other before shooting it down? They say it was a fear of debris falling onto people and property. Also, they said the balloon posed no danger. If they had asked, I know a few guys in Turkeyfoot who could have taken it down for nothing. Nobody hurt. No questions asked. It doesn’t matter the balloon was flying some nine miles higher than any sniper shot ever made. They could find a way. A country boy can survive, and they darn sure aren’t going to be intimidated by a balloon.

We make the jokes because we don’t know what to believe. The Chinese government isn’t going to tell us the truth, we know that. The United States government doesn’t have such a good track record with the truth, either.

When in doubt, make fun. And since we don’t, and probably never will, know the truth, keep the jokes coming.

It came from a balloon release at a China elementary school, each containing a note asking for world peace. And we blew it to smithereens.

There was a new gasoline engine vehicle dealership in Beijing, and the balloon was used to attract customers. Until it got loose. The result: Another year of electric vehicles being pushed down our throats.

Somewhere in surburbia, China, there was a dad who was going to make sure the balloons at his child’s birthday party were bigger than his neighbors. The little girl (sorry, China, a girl just sounds better here.) is still crying because it got away.

– Mike Barnhardt