Book 2 Chapter 197

Monday I felt like I was a rubber ball, bouncing from place to place.

            At 0700 the Generals were in with the first reports from Iran and elsewhere. It was going to be harder than we thought to get the political ball rolling for elections.

            The intent was to identify every young adult fourteen years and older and adults by facial scan, DNA and fingerprints to create ID cards that could be used for elections and other purposes now and later. It was an enormous task.

            The process and equipment had been developed by a previous liberal administration to do the same with all US citizens. The excuse was to be able to track all citizens in case of another pandemic. In reality it was to track every citizen all the time.

            The real problem was it tracked every citizen, their financials, their jobs, medical, their voting, every phone call – not just the numbers but the actual call itself – every movement and everyone they met or who were near them.

            It was the brainchild of the Silicon Valley computer multibillionaires, internet search engine multibillionaires and several financial multibillionaires – all diehard liberals. The Silicon Valley group already had enormous data server farms and had built dozens more to get it ready for the vertical chip.

            They were one election from getting this forced onto the American people until it and its purpose was leaked.

            That leak resulted in the change of American politics with the election of Alexander Thomas.

            I wanted to use only the facial scan, fingerprint and DNA. The DNA to primarily connect to open terrorist investigations. It would take every Persian speaking employee JBG had, all the US government had and computer operators labs to do the DNA. I ordered the process to begin immediately.

            It was at 1000 when there was a report of a massive explosion in the financial section of New York with massive damage and loss of life including a building collapse. Wealthy people and shakers and movers in the world’s financial circles were unaccounted for. The FBI, ATF and terrorist task forces were dispatched to investigate.

            ”What an inappropriate timing for this to happen!” I thought. But I had no time to dwell on it.

            In fifteen minutes I needed to be in one of the back private offices with the media people so they could record, ”Hello this is Roberta Jones and I approve this message.” I was to do it in several languages; English, Spanish, French, Japanese, Persian, Russian and Arabic.

            In a few days complete ads in my voice would fill the airways. The media team wanted to direct campaign ads to select groups. Since I could speak the languages it would be a big boost over the liberal – or so they thought.

            I finished in time for a late lunch. I was still waiting on official news from New York and all that was coming was bad. The building that had collapsed was the corporate offices of the Soweto investment and brokerage.

            Soweto investments controlled investments worth over one hundred billion. It was founded by George Soweto who was accused of pioneering the collapse of the British pound in the seventies and the Russian ruble in the early nineties.

            Later accusations of trying to manipulate political elections in the old Eastern bloc nations in the late 2010s led to calls for his extradition that were squashed by the Obama administration. His money funded extreme liberal politics and bought the seats of some of the most liberal-socialist politicians elected to office in America and Europe.

            His death only made liberal dreams grow; billions of his wealth was left to liberal and progressive groups. His sons were far more liberal than he was and even went further in their socialist leanings than he did. The media was reporting that the entire Soweto management of operations and all his offspring were in the building at the time for a meeting.

            A reporter speculated the meeting was in response to the new candidate as a result of the convention. The new candidate was the new nightmare in the liberal dreams. It was unusual for all the leadership to be in the building at one time, especially all the senior family.

            I called the Treasurer of the US and had some orders for him, ”Lock down all accounts, personnel, public and commercial of the Soweto family and all accounts of Soweto investments and brokerage including clients. All aspects of their business were located in that building, including the computer systems and all records. The chance for massive theft and fraud now exist,” I said.

            The Secretary of the Navy knocked and came in.

            ”I have the plans for the Navy to make the swing to the East China Sea and South Korea. They will pull out of the Indian Ocean in ten days after restocking all supplies and stores,” he said.

            ”Ok! That is good, I will make a trip there before then. I need to pay a visit to the King and visit a couple ships and Iran,” I said.

            I spent a couple hours with Vice President Harrison. He was going on the road tomorrow for the campaign. We worked on topics that we could stay on as the campaign moved forward.

            At 1500 the first official reports came in from New York. Video from every security and traffic cam was seized.

            At 0945 four Con Edison repair vans from the steam division were parked along the street. The vans were ten years old and were sold as clean fuel zero emissions by using compressed natural gas. Each van had twin thirty gallon aluminum tanks wrapped with fiberglass for strength and impact resistance mounted under the bodies outside the frame.

            They were repairing a buried forty eight inch high pressure steam trunk that ran parallel to Wall Street and supplied heat to the high rises.

            Running parallel to the steam pipe was a twelve inch liquefied high pressure natural gas line that was fed from a refinery. The pipeline fed substations where the pressure was reduced to low pressure vapor that was safe to use in buildings.

            Over the years there had been a number of accidents with high pressure steam in the boroughs of New York. I could remember at least two in the last few years.

            OSHA, the steam fitters unions, the NYC version of OSHA and the NY state OSHA had finalized safety procedures on eliminate accidents when steam utilities were placed back in service after repairs.          

            The real hazard was as the steam pressure was reduced, the steam cooling in the pipes changed back into water that collected in the pipe – in the low spots and there were a lot of them – a lot of water could collect there. The procedure was that the giant valves were to be opened very slowly – one percent, wait ten minutes then two percent and so on.

            The reason was the water in the pipes needed to be slowly heated until it turned back into steam. If the valves were opened too fast that water immediately super-heated to steam and raised the pressures to explosive levels.

            The system operators read the operating instructions to the valve operator and he in turn read them back for verifications. Computers monitored the switches and as he applied the instructions and when operating correctly they had the ability to stop the valves from opening.

            Part of the repair was to replace computer control cables as well as repair and reseal the valve. The entire trunk line had been isolated and the valve was manually operated to ensure the new seals were working properly and not binding. When satisfied with its operation they were to remove the lock-outs and return the automated controls.

            The switch that controlled the valve gearing motor had a 1 to 10 setting with 1 being one percent and ten as one hundred percent open. When closing the setting was 10 to instantly close the valve. The valve operator should have manually reset it to 1 with the computer confirming the setting. Something that now will never be known unless the investigators could recover the controls intact – very unlikely.

            At 0955 security cameras showed the one thousand five hundred feet of sidewalk exploding, throwing concrete hundreds of feet in the air. Five seconds later all four of the vans exploded in a massive explosion. The compressed gas in the tanks had the explosive force of thousands of pounds of TNT.

            The tanks had safety plugs that melted in the event of a fire, allowing the pressure to bleed off and letting the gas burn. With an explosion of this manner the tanks were ruptured before the plugs could melt. This was the second catastrophic event in ten seconds.

            The third was the twelve inch high-pressure liquefied natural gas pipe. Even with the twenty four inch safety barrier of dirt, the steam pipe explosion ruptured the gas line discharging the high pressure liquid gas into the massive open basement of the Soweto building. Ongoing explosions from the vans ignited the basement full of thousands of gallons of natural gas.

            Video showed the twenty five story Soweto building rising straight up and then collapsing as it settled back down, reminiscent of the Twin Towers. It destroyed the city block it was sitting on and damaged the surrounding buildings.

            To add insult to injury, Angus Bloomfield and his family along with a dozen bodyguards was making his morning stroll from his apartment to his office skyscraper that was on the adjacent city block. They were walking by the Con-Ed vans when the first explosion took place.

            Angus Bloomfield was another multi-billionaire estimated to be worth eighty billion; he was eighty one. Financing, investments and media only scratched the surface of things he was into. He had been many things in his lifetime that money, power and influence could buy.

            He had been mayor of NYC, New York Governor and had run several times for President. He plied both Republican and Democrat parties in his quest for power with whichever party looked to be the best at the time.

            As he aged he turned liberal then to an extreme liberal, giving hundreds of millions of dollars to the wackiest liberal and democratic candidates, groups and organizations.

            There was no way they could have survived. I called the Treasurer back and expanded the lockdown to his financial empire and everything it touched. Bloomfield’s office skyscraper was nearly destroyed by the explosion and was now on fire from bottom to top.

            Frank Love, Eric Roberson, Marty Coeburn and Ben Smith of the Terrorist Taskforce were reviewing the video with me.

            I had the best video clips loaded and as a group we went to the media center to explain what we knew so far and give Harry a break from the flack he was getting.

            The news conference lasted an hour with the media refusing to accept any possibility this was caused by human or computer error or aged and faulty equipment. They were determined that it was terrorist event caused by the events in Iran.

            ”There will be an intense investigation and I am sure it will prove to be accidental. Not one of our intelligence sources had any indication of any terroristic activity,” I said.

            I met with my campaign committee and began the process of running for President. For the next ten weeks my life was going to be a blur. Tomorrow the live TV interviews would begin again with me as the candidate.

Edit by Alfmeister

Proof read by Bob W.

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