The Briefing follows… first, with due respect to my “Republican” friends, I want to express my heartfelt apologies to all of you in the rest of the world. In the four short years of my bike tour of the world, America has gone from being the most admired and respected nation on the planet, even among our enemies, to a pariah, even among our friends.
Dalton, Eduardo, Steve and I are all distressed that Americans could be duped into voting for a guy so unspeakably disastrous in the war on terrorism, the environment, the economy… the list goes on. We’re sorry that the effects of most of these policies spill over our border and affect your lives negatively. If you have any consolation, it is that we Americans will suffer the consequences even more. Fortunately, we live in a free country where we can say stuff like this, and a democracy where we can do something about it.
(We are Dalton Cox, Steve DelVecchio, Eduardo Erler Lis and Robert Perkowitz, and we authorized this message.)
Americans observe and decry Putin using the terror/fear card to diminish democracy and consolidate power, Mugabe destroying the social fabric and economy of his nation, Arafat squandering every opportunity for peace in the Middle East for decades or the Austrians electing a neo-Nazi as prime minister, but we fail to see the same problem in our own midst.
We can have a secure America, with foreign trade and federal government surpluses, a strong economy, and a healthy environment, without so obviously screwing up our country and the planet.
Pseudo-Republican RINOs have taken over that party and learned well how to stand traditional Republican values, and the truth, on their head. There’s nothing conservative about them. The Democrats are looking like irrelevant idiots, but that party may be America’s only chance. Moderate Republicans should take over the Democratic Party, help them regain vision and consistent values, unify America and bring us back to economic prosperity and international security.
RASAM2004 PART II BRIEFING
Part II should be more beautiful and interesting than the farms and ranches in the rolling hills of Brazil and Paraguay and the pampas of Argentina.
We start in Salta, Argentina – definitely a place worth visiting. The “Tren a Las Nubes” (Train to the Clouds), Humachaca Canyon (UNESCO World Heritage Site), the high altitude Cafayete wine growing region, the Andes and all their beauty and outdoor activities, and the colonial city of Salta itself are all magnificent attractions.
Then we ride over a range of foothills to Jujuy, the northernmost ‘city’ in Argentina, turn west and cross the Andes. Our first pass on day 3, west of Puma is at 13,500 feet. A couple of days on the altiplano riding through the great salt flats we crest at Paso de Jama, 4,425 meters, 14,600 feet high. Then it’s through the alticama, the driest place in the world and down the other side of the Andes a couple of hundred miles to the Pacific Ocean.
We then ride 800 miles north through the coastal desert into Peru where we’ll see sacred cultural sights including the Lines of Nazca (discovered in 1939) and Machu Picchu (discovered in 1911) and finally end up in chaotic Lima. Here’s the planned route & dates:
date Km Mi Km Mi night in
11/10/04 – – – – Salta
11/11/04 107 066 107 066 San Salvador de Jujuy
11/12/04 089 055 196 122 Punamarca
11/13/04 124 077 320 199 Susques
11/14/04 142 088 462 287 Paso de Jama
11/15/04 160 099 622 386 San Pedro de Atacama
11/16/04 089 055 711 442 Calama
11/17/04 169 105 880 547 Tocopilla
11/18/04 166 103 1,046 650 Tocopilla
11/19/04 176 110 1,222 759 Iruique
11/20/04 174 108 1,397 867 Aduana y Refen de Cuya
11/21/04 130 081 1,527 948 Arica
11/22/04 065 040 1,592 989 Tacna
11/23/04 154 096 1,746 1,084 Ilo
11/24/04 110 068 1,856 1,153 Moquequa
11/25/04 194 121 2,050 1,274 Camana
11/26/04 000 000 2,050 1,274 Camana
11/27/04 210 130 2,260 1,404 Chala
11/28/04 108 067 2,369 1,471 Nazca
11/29/04 144 089 2,512 1,560 Ica
11/30/04 108 067 2,621 1,628 Chincha Alta
12/01/04 231 143 2,852 1,771 Lima
Once again, thanks for coming along for the ride!