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Old 05-31-2019, 02:20 PM
Bijou Drains is online now
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Loud motorcycles to honor vets on Memorial Day?


A couple years ago I was in DC on Memorial Day weekend. And I found out that there is an annual ride to honor fallen vets. From what I can tell all they do is ride around the national mall in a circle for a while in mostly loud Harley bikes. This year they announced this is the last year of the ride. But Trump said it's not the last year in his normal nutty way

Does anyone think that making a lot of noise in DC is a good way to honor fallen vets?
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Old 05-31-2019, 02:31 PM
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It's called "Rolling Thunder." Read all about it here:

https://www.rollingthunderrun.com/
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Old 05-31-2019, 02:45 PM
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It's called "Rolling Thunder." Read all about it here:

https://www.rollingthunderrun.com/
Interesting. I'm all for protests. But what do they think the government can do that it hasn't done?

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The first Run in 1988, had roughly 2500 motorcycles and riders demanding that the U.S. government account for all POW/MIAs.
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Old 05-31-2019, 09:37 PM
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Why, get these guys home!

Oh wait, that was a hoax. Turns out they weren't POWs after all. That photo, in 1991, was sort of the last gasp of the "Vietnam left-behind American prisoners" conspiracy hawking that got much traction. But the true believers carry on.
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Old 06-01-2019, 08:45 AM
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Old 06-01-2019, 09:17 AM
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This year they announced this is the last year of the ride. But Trump said it's not the last year in his normal nutty way
I'm no fan of the President, but this at least was not an example of him being "nutty".

The reason that Rolling Thunder is not being planned for next year is that the cost of it is too high. The primary reason for this is dealing with the security concerns of having a large group of motorcyclists parading around amidst sensitive security areas (namely, federal government buildings that include the White House and the Congress). President Trump's assertion that they will be back is, in essence, a statement on his part that he wants his Administration to facilitate their return, by waiving or paying for or otherwise mitigating the expense of security efforts. Which, certainly, he's in a position to see happens.
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Old 06-01-2019, 09:34 AM
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Speaking as a DC resident, I have always hated Rolling Thunder. I fail to see how annoying people with loud bikes is any kind of tribute. And the difference with the loud fireworks of the Fourth of July is that most people enjoy fireworks; the fireworks last for only like 30 or 40 minutes; and if you don't want to be bothered by the noise, just don't go down to the Mall. For Rolling Thunder, it's thousands of bikers being obnoxious all over the area for a whole weekend, even to the point of bikes racing down streets at 2 am just to wake people up.

So, good riddance. I welcome back everyone next year who wants to commemorate the holiday in a way that isn't antisocial.
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Old 06-01-2019, 09:42 AM
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For Rolling Thunder, it's thousands of bikers being obnoxious all over the area for a whole weekend, even to the point of bikes racing down streets at 2 am just to wake people up.
But, but... the British are coming!

And you call yourself a Patriot.
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Old 06-01-2019, 09:43 AM
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I'm no fan of the President, but this at least was not an example of him being "nutty".
So it's more an example of him being ineffective.

Because he didn't actually do anything. He just publicly said he was going to do something. And let's face facts, he has a long history of saying he's going to do something and then not following through. Trump loves attention but he doesn't like work.

If the only thing Rolling Thunder's future has is Trump's promise, then it's over.
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Old 06-01-2019, 01:22 PM
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So it's more an example of him being ineffective.

Because he didn't actually do anything. He just publicly said he was going to do something. And let's face facts, he has a long history of saying he's going to do something and then not following through. Trump loves attention but he doesn't like work.

If the only thing Rolling Thunder's future has is Trump's promise, then it's over.
No, it's an example of him potentially being "ineffective". If he fails to follow through, then you can remove the qualifier.
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Old 06-01-2019, 01:35 PM
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If the only thing Rolling Thunder's future has is Trump's promise, then it's over.
Boy Howdy! That's pretty near the last nail in the coffin.

Trump is more full of shit than I am.
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Old 06-01-2019, 09:57 PM
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No, it's an example of him potentially being "ineffective". If he fails to follow through, then you can remove the qualifier.
So as long as he hasn't done anything, it counts as a success? Because he might still do it in the future?

You must have dug a trench to lower the bar that far down.
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Old 06-02-2019, 07:46 PM
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The reason that Rolling Thunder is not being planned for next year is that the cost of it is too high.
I think I read that it costs $200,000 for Rolling Thunder. I don't know why Harley Davidson and the other bike makers don't step up and donate the money for next year. It's a good cause that draws attention.

Interesting story: I was at Arlington cemetery with my kids on the 29th, and while waiting to go through the metal detectors, all I heard was huge biker guys in full leathers complaining about how hot it was
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Old 06-02-2019, 09:03 PM
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Speaking as a DC resident, I have always hated Rolling Thunder. I fail to see how annoying people with loud bikes is any kind of tribute. And the difference with the loud fireworks of the Fourth of July is that most people enjoy fireworks; the fireworks last for only like 30 or 40 minutes; and if you don't want to be bothered by the noise, just don't go down to the Mall. For Rolling Thunder, it's thousands of bikers being obnoxious all over the area for a whole weekend, even to the point of bikes racing down streets at 2 am just to wake people up.

So, good riddance. I welcome back everyone next year who wants to commemorate the holiday in a way that isn't antisocial.
Exactly. Now, can we get rid of police week?
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Old 06-03-2019, 12:34 AM
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It's a good cause that draws attention.
Not a good cause. There are no POWs, never were since 1975 I believe. As for those who went missing in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, the US military is to be commended for doing its best to account for all, and return remains when possible, but it's a slow and difficult process that will never be concluded to everyone's satisfaction.
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Old 06-03-2019, 12:57 AM
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I had no idea it was a national thing. In Milwaukee he had a few rides this week and I think another later in the week.
I don't know who pays for organizing it (likely the local Harley dealerships), but it brings a lot of money into the local economy. For the ride yesterday, we did catering for about a hundred people. During the big rallies every 5 years, there's unfathomable amount of bikes in the area (think Sturgis). The local hotels are always booked for the next one by the time current one is done. Plus people coming in from all over the country/world and spending money at the local restaurants, bars, clubs, gas stations, hotels etc.

As far as it being to honor vets, based on what I see, quote a number of the bikers are vets themselves. Plus if anyone is looking for a cause to ride for, it's the HOGs.
As for the noise, I dunno, for one weekend I don't mind it and it's kinda fun. Loud, yes, but fun to watch...and this is coming from someone that lives close enough to the intersection of two main roads that I hear them all night long.

Looking at some of the other posts, perhaps out situation is biased. Again, yes, the bikes are loud, but generally well behaved. I don't recall much racing, they tend to be courteous to cars (cagers). And we have a motorcycle club headquarters (The Outlaws) that is a rival of the Hell's Angels, and still no real problems that I've ever seen.

Also, @manson, I'm sure it's hot in full leathers, but if he was actually wearing leather pants, gloves and a jacket, he's more concerned about protection (road rash if he falls) than weather. If it was just for looks, he'd likely just have leather boots and a vest.

And, just because I looked it up, these rallies bring in between 150,000 and 200,000 bikes. It's A LOT of people.
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Old 06-03-2019, 01:19 AM
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As for those who went missing in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, the US military is to be commended for doing its best to account for all, and return remains when possible, but it's a slow and difficult process that will never be concluded to everyone's satisfaction.
The fact that a "missing" soldier was almost certainly going to come back as remains (if the body was even found) was willfully misconstrued by the Nixon administration, which is where the conspiracy theories originate:

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It began, as cultural historian H. Bruce Franklin has documented, with an opportunistic shift in terminology. Downed pilots whose bodies were not recovered—which, in the dense jungle of a place like Vietnam meant most pilots—had once been classified “Killed in Action/Body Unrecovered.”

During the Nixon years, the Pentagon moved them into a newly invented “Missing in Action” column. That proved convenient, for, after years of playing down the existence of American prisoners in Vietnam, in 1969, the new president suddenly decided to play them up.

[...]

Whenever Nixon or one of his minions talked about the problem, they tended to use the number 1,400. The number of actual prisoners, was about 550. The number of downed, missing pilots were spoken of, prima facia, as if they were missing, too, although almost all of them were certainly dead.
This makes me very pessimistic, honestly. What wacky MAGA fact are people going to be flying flags and revving engines for in 2069?

Last edited by Lord Feldon; 06-03-2019 at 01:24 AM.
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Old 06-03-2019, 08:29 AM
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Not a good cause. There are no POWs, never were since 1975 I believe. As for those who went missing in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, the US military is to be commended for doing its best to account for all, and return remains when possible, but it's a slow and difficult process that will never be concluded to everyone's satisfaction.
Well, I say it's a good cause. Plus it's cool to see all the bikes and bikers.
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Old 06-03-2019, 08:53 AM
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Plus it's cool to see all the bikes and bikers.
I recall a couple years ago having lunch in Old Town Alexandria, where a couple bikers thought it would be "cool" to have their bikes running for 30 minutes and periodically rev the engines to show everyone how loud they are. Probably in that way that it is "cool" to annoy hundreds of people for no reason.

As I said before, good riddance.

Last edited by Ravenman; 06-03-2019 at 08:54 AM.
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Old 06-03-2019, 09:03 AM
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I recall a couple years ago having lunch in Old Town Alexandria, where a couple bikers thought it would be "cool" to have their bikes running for 30 minutes and periodically rev the engines to show everyone how loud they are. Probably in that way that it is "cool" to annoy hundreds of people for no reason.

As I said before, good riddance.
Was it during Rolling Thunder? If not, I fail to see the relevance.
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Old 06-03-2019, 11:11 AM
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Was it during Rolling Thunder? If not, I fail to see the relevance.
It was during Memorial Day weekend and with jackholes who were clearly going to participate in the ride. That's why I mentioned it.

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Old 06-03-2019, 11:54 AM
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A bunch of people from all walks of life gather together to spend time and money for the purpose of acting as an honor guard? The only words that come to mind are "Thank you."
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Old 06-03-2019, 11:58 AM
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Anyone who intentionally rides a vehicle that loud is by definition an asshole.

But these guys turn it up to 11 when they come into town on Memorial Day.
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Old 06-03-2019, 02:26 PM
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I'm no fan of the President, but this at least was not an example of him being "nutty".

The reason that Rolling Thunder is not being planned for next year is that the cost of it is too high. The primary reason for this is dealing with the security concerns of having a large group of motorcyclists parading around amidst sensitive security areas (namely, federal government buildings that include the White House and the Congress). President Trump's assertion that they will be back is, in essence, a statement on his part that he wants his Administration to facilitate their return, by waiving or paying for or otherwise mitigating the expense of security efforts. Which, certainly, he's in a position to see happens.
The expense is a big part of it but I'm confused as to why they have "hundreds of thousands of participants" who can't cough up $2 apiece to execute this. The stated reason was, “Reasons which determined our decision were the Pentagon Security Police/Washington Police officials continued lack of cooperation, increased harassment to our supporters and sponsors.” There is an enormous planning and logistics effort and coordination with many agencies in the DC government and the federal government, and a rising number of participants, which I'm sure would be a big challenge even with great cooperation.

It is simply collapsing under its own weight, and Trump can't do anything about it. Trump tweeted that they'll be back next year when he does not have the ability--yes, not even Trump!--to ensure this is true. Nutty.
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Old 06-03-2019, 04:55 PM
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A bunch of people from all walks of life gather together to spend time and money for the purpose of acting as an honor guard? The only words that come to mind are "Thank you."
riding around the mall for hours is acting as an honor guard?
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Old 06-03-2019, 05:10 PM
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Anyone who intentionally rides a vehicle that loud is by definition an asshole.
This.
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Old 06-03-2019, 11:27 PM
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Well, I say it's a good cause. Plus it's cool to see all the bikes and bikers.
Well you might think so, but here's the first part of their mission statement (from Rolling Thunder link above):

Rolling Thunder Washington, DC, Inc's mission is to educate, facilitate, and never forget by means of a demonstration for service members that were abandoned after the Vietnam War.

In other words, a myth which I'd say is at best a delusion, at worst harmful to families of the missing.
But I'd guess most participants really just want an excuse to have fun and gun their big bad Harleys.
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Old 06-04-2019, 12:13 AM
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I was in a hotel outside of Columbus Ohio for a music festival over Memorial Day weekend. A Rolling Thunder group got a block of rooms in the same hotel. They were as nice as can be. They left fairly early in the morning and of course it was noisy when they started up their bikes but they road straight out of the parking lot and didnt uselessly rev their engines at all.
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Old 06-04-2019, 07:31 AM
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Well you might think so, but here's the first part of their mission statement (from Rolling Thunder link above):

Rolling Thunder Washington, DC, Inc's mission is to educate, facilitate, and never forget by means of a demonstration for service members that were abandoned after the Vietnam War.

In other words, a myth which I'd say is at best a delusion, at worst harmful to families of the missing.
But I'd guess most participants really just want an excuse to have fun and gun their big bad Harleys.
They've adjusted it to encompass all POW/MIAs from all wars. But hey, you don't have to like it. I think it's cool to see.
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Old 06-04-2019, 12:24 PM
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So as long as he hasn't done anything, it counts as a success? Because he might still do it in the future?

You must have dug a trench to lower the bar that far down.
Uh, false dichotomy. One is not "ineffective" just because one hasn't yet been "successful". It's simply too early to measure the effectiveness of the President's efforts, n'est-e pas?
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