Tuesday, December 25, 2012


On the early dog walk this morning, I saw the fire engine leave the Fire Station that is near us.  It started me thinking about all the people who don't get Christmas Day off.

Obviously, the firemen don't get the day off and of course, policemen also are out there protecting us (since thieves also don't take off, but I don't feel sorry for them).

People that work at Electric Generation Plants are required to be there every day.  Paperboy/men work every day.

The most important group that work on holidays is the military.  They often are away from home and work most days (of course, not everyone who work in the above work on all holidays, but a subset are required to work).

THANK YOU for your sacrifices to keep us safe or supply needed services!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Lack of Truth

Yesterday we watched a movie called, "Christmas Kiss".  It was a very predictable in that the Good girl ends up with the guy after various tragedies which gave an impression that the Bad woman was winning.  The movie was OK since we like happy endings.

But part of the premise of the movie was that the good girl kept thoughts and actions from the guy that would have helped him to realize that she was the right one for him.  And I was thinking how often keeping secrets or outright lies are part of the reason that movies last beyond 10 or 15 minutes.

If only the people wouldn't lie or keep thoughts to themselves there would not be a plot.

If in real life we would always tell the truth and not try to hide things, our lives would be much easier and happy!

Figures often beguile me, particularly when I have the arranging of them myself; in which case the remark attributed to Disraeli would often apply with justice and force: "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics."
- Mark Twain's Own Autobiography: The Chapters from the North American Review. (Just a fun quote!)

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Winter 2012

( This was written 12/21 but had blogger problems getting it in) It is the first day of winter.  Yesterday we got the first measurable snow in 9 months.  It was not very measurable, maybe 1/4 inch or so.  This morning on the dog walk, the wind was blowing at about 30 mph.  So neither of us were willing to walk far.

With Frisbit's unsteadiness on his legs, it appeared he was going to be knocked over when we were directly in the path of the wind.  But he managed to remain on his feet.

It is nice to see snow on the ground, the last few days we have been getting rain and it was dreary.  Snow gives a nice contrast to mud.

One thing I have noticed with our new ( still seems new after close to a year) car is that it attracts frost to its windshield.  Our old car did some but not as much.  Of course, the new car has a smaller windshield so it is not as hard to clean.

I have always thought that cold was better than hot since you can always layer on clothes and there is a quick limit to amount of clothes you can remove in company.  It is hard to get use to the cold, after a while 20F seems OK but the first few days it seems toooo cold.  I guess we will survive!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

12 Days of Christmas

I was thinking of the carol 12 Days of Christmas and how yucky most of the gifts are.  Who really wants a Turtle Dove or French Hens or Calling Birds or Geese or Swans, especially with all the mess of multiple birds?

In general, maids a milking is not that useful in most households!

Ladies dancing or pipers piping or drummers drumming would not lead to peace and quiet!

And who wants a bunch of lords a leaping?

Now 5 Golden rings might be OK, but I don't like wearing rings!

Not to mention the cost:
Want to give your true love some traditional Christmas gifts? Why not buy him or her the items from the famed "The 12 Days of Christmas" carol?
Maybe because it will set you back $107,000. That's about 6 percent more than the items from the song cost last year, according to PNC Wealth Management's "Christmas Price Index." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/26/12-days-of-christmas-cost_n_2193494.html
I being an ignorant sort did not know this:

Religious symbolism of The Twelve Days of Christmas
(The 12 Days of Christmas)

1 True Love refers to God
2 Turtle Doves refers to the Old and New Testaments
3 French Hens refers to Faith, Hope and Charity, the Theological Virtues
4 Calling Birds refers to the Four Gospels and/or the Four Evangelists
5 Golden Rings refers to the first Five Books of the Old Testament, the "Pentateuch", which gives the history of man's fall from grace.
6 Geese A-laying refers to the six days of creation
7 Swans A-swimming refers to the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, the seven sacraments
8 Maids A-milking refers to the eight beatitudes
9 Ladies Dancing refers to the nine Fruits of the Holy Spirit
10 Lords A-leaping refers to the ten commandments
11 Pipers Piping refers to the eleven faithful apostles
12 Drummers Drumming refers to the twelve points of doctrine in the Apostle's Creed

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Foggy Walk

This morning, it was very foggy during the dog walk this morning.  Fog reminds me of a song that my LW sings in her Swedish women's chorus called HANDS OF WINTER.  It is depressing and somewhat discordant.

You could only see about 40-50 feet in front of you.  It always seems that it is colder when you are in fog.

I have an over active imagination and it seems that my hearing is more acute when it is hard to see.  So drops of dew falling from trees sound like intruders lurking in the shadows ready to attack us.  The mere fact that the neighborhood is very safe and we never have intruders; has no effect on my imagination.

Fortunately there were no cars near us on the walk.  And the intruders did not attack either and we arrived home safely.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Bush's Fault

Political Cartoons by Henry Payne

Some more election humor!

 Rising prices and chronic unemployment were heavy on the minds of voters Tuesday even as a glimmer of optimism peeked through. Four in 10 said the nation’s battered economy is getting better.
Most everyone agreed there’s still far to go. They were less likely to blame President Barack Obama for the economic troubles, however, than to point the finger at his predecessor, George W. Bush, according to preliminary results of a national exit poll.
Only a fourth thought they were better off financially than four years ago when Obama was elected in the midst of the worst economic collapse since the Great Depression. Voters were most likely to say their families were doing about the same, and Obama led among that group.
A third felt worse off, and they were voting heavily for Romney.

Bush had a democratic congress in his last years when the US starting going in the dumper!  But usually the President gets blamed, but not P.O.!

Monday, November 12, 2012


Last night, I was listening to the Bears/Texans game on the radio.

In my opinion, the Bears' sportscasters are awful.

On one play, the play by play guy said that the Texans had intercepted the pass.  At no time did he say where it was intercepted.  Remember on the radio the only way we know the yard line is if they tell us.

Then he would say a good gain, no amount or down and yardage to go.

The color guy is an ex-Bear, who does not know how to shut up.  Much of what he says is very technical on the blocking (he is an ex-ProBowl Tackle) and is interesting.  He yells "BALL" when there is a fumble and certainly wakes up the dead or sleeping.

On every play, the Bears were interfered with or held or had a personal foul toward them.  A little homer is OK but they are too much.

The old Bears' play by play guy now calls the game for the GB Packers and he was and is excellent.

I much prefer the national radio guys over the Bears' announcers.

Fat Tax

Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

Just thought it was funny!

Denmark said Saturday it would scrap a fat tax it introduced a little over a year ago in a world first, saying the measure was costly and failed to change Danes' eating habits.
"The fat tax and the extension of the chocolate tax -- the so-called sugar tax -- has been criticised for increasing prices for consumers, increasing companies' administrative costs and putting Danish jobs at risk," the Danish tax ministry said in a statement.
"At the same time it is believed that the fat tax has, to a lesser extent, contributed to Danes travelling across the border to make purchases," it added.
"Against this background, the government and the (far-left) Red Green Party have agreed to abolish the fat tax and cancel the planned sugar tax," the ministry said.
Denmark's centre-left minority government is made up of the Social Democrats, Social Liberals and Socialist People's Party, and requires support from other parties to pass legislation in parliament.
The government and the Red Greens reached the agreement as part of their negotiations on the 2013 budget bill.
The previous right-wing government introduced the fat tax in October 2011 to limit the population's intake of fatty foods.
According to the Danish National Health and Medicines Authority, 47 percent of Danes are overweight and 13 percent are obese.
"Now we need to try to do something else to address public health," Food Minister Mette Gjerskov said, news agency Ritzau reported.
The fat tax has been levied on all products containing saturated fats -- from butter and milk to pizzas, oils, meats and pre-cooked foods -- in a costing system that Denmark's Confederation of Industries has described as a bureaucratic nightmare for producers and outlets.
The measure added 16 kroner per kilo of saturated fats in a product.
As an example, when the tax was introduced the price of a pack of 250 grammes (0.5 pounds) of butter rose by 2.20 kroner ($0.37, 0.29 euros) to more than 18 kroner.

Government can't teach self-restraint.  Adding a tax raises money does not cause "correct" behavior.

More Americans are becoming overweight or obese, exercising less, and eating unhealthy foods.
That’s the finding of the latest Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, which shows that 63.1% of adults in the U.S. were either overweight or obese in 2009.
That was a small but measurable increase from 62.2% the previous year. The survey finds that 36.6% of Americans are overweight and 26.5% obese.

I like desserts so I try to not get started eating them since once I get started I tend to eat a lot!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Political Ads

We DVR TV shows and watch them usually on Fridays.  A lot of the shows we watch are Monday shows.

So this past Friday, we watched three shows that originally were broadcast on the Monday before the election.

As you can guess there were a lot of political ads during those shows.  Everyone of them were negative, showing why we should NOT vote for their opponent.  Since IL is a very Obama state there were no Presidential ads, but were ads for various House of Reps seats.

I would have thought at least one of them would be positive, but there were none.

We received a lot of campaign literature (exactly none of them could really be considered literature). Everyone of them also were reasons to not vote for the opponents.

I think that a reason to vote for someone would be better at convincing voters then what was used.  But I could be wrong since there are people elected to all the positions!


Now that the election is over, many Americans say the gridlock getting in the way of passing legislation has to go.
"Because they're doing the American public a disservice.  What would happen if we performed our jobs that way?  I think we need to see results and they need to set aside their differences and come together.  If you look at what's happened over the last four years very few changes were made.  Most of the changes were made when the democrats controlled the house.  Once it became controlled by the republicans there was no more compromises," says Houstonian Barbara Cooper.
With fractions of the country fighting for one candidate or another that has added a great deal of separation across the country.  Now, many hope the division will be subtracted from the country.  So the question is how do you get the two groups, Democrats and Republicans, to work as one and do what's best for the country?  Is it a simple math equation or more like tabulating trigonometry?
"Americans are Americans regardless.  We're all one family regardless of what political party you might be in.  No matter what happens it affects everyone.  We just need to come together," adds Houston resident Frank Warford.
Rice University Political Science Professor Mark Jones says in order for the gridlock to go away Republicans and Democrats will have to, well, do the c-word, compromise.
"Everybody wants the end of partisan gridlock but what most people want is their vision to be the dominant one.
"I mean little kids have to learn how to compromise.  You'd think that grown men would too," says Eduardo who lives in Houston.

I for one do not mind political gridlock.  The fewer laws that our "representatives" make "for us" is better.  Most laws today infringe on individual liberties.

We need to repeal laws not add more to the hopper.

"I note one proposal to make this Congress a two-house body. Excellent — the more impediments to legislation the better. But, instead of following tradition, I suggest one house of legislators, another whose single duty is to repeal laws. Let the legislators pass laws only with a two-thirds majority... while the repealers are able to cancel any law through a mere one-third minority. Preposterous? Think about it. If a bill is so poor that it cannot command two-thirds of your consents, is it not likely that it would make a poor law? And if a law is disliked by as many as one-third is it not likely that you would be better off without it?"
Robert Heinlein "The Moon is a Harsh Mistress"

The professor is speaking to the new congress on the moon.  I think he may have the right idea.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Election 1

“A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship. The average age of the world's greatest civilizations has been 200 years.”
― Alexis de Tocqueville

As the elder ( dead) Fraser in the DUE SOUTH tv show said, "Enough said"!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Vote Fraud is a Felony

Democratic lawmakers and activists nationwide are angry about a crop of billboard signs posted in early October in the Cleveland and Milwaukee areas that warn of stiff penalties for voter fraud.
The roughly 33 signs warn that "Voter Fraud is a Felony" punishable by up to 3-1/2 years in prison and a $10,000 fine, wording flanked by a large picture of a judge's gavel.
The signs will be up through the Nov. 6 election day in the Cleveland and Milwaukee areas and were paid for by an anonymous "Family Foundation," according to a spokesman for Clear Channel Outdoor, which owns the billboards and placed the signs.
The signs do not amount to voter suppression, Hasen said.
"It's true that voter fraud is a felony and we don't want people committing voter fraud," Hasen said.
The content of the message is not governed by campaign advertising regulations requiring disclosure of funding sources, said the Clear Channel Outdoor spokesman, David Yale, adding that billboards were placed in areas to "reach maximum saturation" and not to racially and socio-economically profile.http://www.newsmax.com/US/voter-fraud-billboard-Midwest/2012/10/12/id/459824

Interesting that democrats are against signs that rightly state that vote fraud is illegal.  I'm sure that they wouldn't want vote fraud to determine the election, would they?

Friday, October 19, 2012

Monday, October 15, 2012

Ad and Cartoon

Political Cartoons by Jerry Holbert

Just a fun cartoon and a Romney ad!

Which candidate would you like to be the next VP?

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Couple of THOSE kind of Days

A week ago last Friday was one of those kind of days.

I bicycled into the Y (we had just found out our YMCA was closing due to some embezzlement  of funds) and there was a skunk in the middle of the road (this was around 0430).  This is not a circumstance that one wants in the early morning while riding a bike.  I used my whistle defense (when I see creatures that I want to avoid I whistle to alert them) and fortunately it went the other way.

Next there was a runner on the bike path with no reflective vest or light.  I missed him, I guess he saw my light and went to the other side of the path.

When I came home my LW was walking down our road, I thought that this was strange.  She couldn't find the cell phone and went to the car to see if it was there.  Unfortunately she locked the door of the house and was locked out (our ungrateful dog did not unlock the door for her, what was he thinking?).  I was able to let her in.

However, the lost cell phone was a problem.  We add minutes to our cell phone once a year and the time to do that was that day.  I didn't want to add the minutes for the person who found it.  We originally bought the cell phone when our daughter was expecting her 3rd child, so that we could go watch the other kids when she and her husband went to have the baby.  We only use it for emergencies or when contacting someone when we will be home, so we don't use it much.  If we miss the addition we lose all of our minutes, so it was fortunate that eventually she found it and I was able to renew us for another year.

The next day, I decided to finally replace the kitchen faucet.  I had bought a new one a couple of weeks before, but kept putting off actually replacing the old one.  The old one no longer wanted to turn, fortunately it had a pull out spout so we could still sort of use it.

Whenever, you replace a faucet it has to be down underneath the sink.  So it is very uncomfortable lying down on the wooden slatts of the cupboard beneath the sink.  But eventually I everything hooked up except the plastic tube connecting the pull out spout.

It said to loosen the nut at the top 2 turns and insert the tube in 2.5 cm.  Well I couldn't get it that far, so I loosened it all the way so I could get it in the required amount.  Unfortunately, I couldn't refasten it.  So after trying for what seemed like an hour (my LW cleverly went on a dog walk, since she knows that me and mechanical things are not friends).  I cut the plastic tube (after trying a pipe cutter [not work], hack saw [not work],  another saw [not work]) with a metal cutting shears.  Then I loosened it 2 turns and inserted as far as I could get it to go and then tried the faucet (against all odds) it worked and I got the cold and hot lines right too!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Mychal Massie is a respected writer and talk show host in Los Angeles . 

        The other evening on my twitter, a person asked me why I didn't like the Obama's?   Specifically I was asked: "I have to ask, why do you hate the Obama's?   It seems personal, not policy related.   You even dissed (disrespect) their Christmas family picture." 
        The truth is I do not like the Obamas, what they represent, their ideology, and I certainly do not like his policies and legislation.   I've made no secret of my contempt for the Obamas.   As I responded to the person who asked me the aforementioned question, I don't like them because they are committed to the fundamental change of my/our country into what can only be regarded as a Communist state. 
        I don't hate them per definition, but I condemn them because they are the worst kind of racialists, they are elitist Leninists with contempt for traditional America .  They display disrespect for the sanctity of the office he holds, and for those who are willing to admit same, Michelle Obama's raw contempt for white America is transpicuous. 
        I don't like them because they comport themselves as emperor and empress.   I expect, no I demand respect, for the Office of President and a love of our country and her citizenry from the leader entrusted with the governance of same.   President and Mrs. Reagan displayed an unparalleled love for the country and her people.  The Reagan's made Americans feel good about themselves and about what we could accomplish.   His arrogance by appointing 32 leftist czars and constantly bypassing congress is impeachable.   Eric Holder is probably the MOST incompetent and arrogant DOJ head to ever hold the job. Could you envision President Reagan instructing his Justice Department to act like jack-booted thugs? 
        Presidents are politicians and all politicians are known and pretty much expected to manipulate the truth, if not outright lie, but even using that low standard, the Obama's have taken lies, dishonesty, deceit, mendacity, subterfuge and obfuscation to new depths.   They are verbally abusive to the citizenry, and they display an animus for civility. 
        I do not like them, because they both display bigotry overtly, as in the case of Harvard Professor Louis Gates, when he accused the Cambridge Police of acting stupidly, and her code speak pursuant to now being able to be proud of America .   I view that statement and that mindset as an insult to those who died to provide a country where a Kenyan, his illegal alien relatives, and his alleged progeny, could come and not only live freely, but rise to the highest, most powerful, position in the world.  Michelle Obama is free to hate and disparage whites because Americans of every description paid with their blood to ensure her right to do same. 
        I have a saying, that "the only reason a person hides things, is because they have something to hide."   No president in history has spent over a million dollars to keep his records and his past sealed. 
        And what the two of them have shared has been proved to be lies.   He lied about when and how they met, he lied about his mother's death and problems with insurance, Michelle lied to a crowd pursuant to nearly $500,000 bank stocks they inherited from his family.   He has lied about his father's military service, about the civil rights movement, ad nausea.   He lied to the world about the Supreme Court in a State of the Union address.   He berated and publicly insulted a sitting Congressman.   He has surrounded himself with the most rabidly, radical, socialist academicians today.   He opposed rulings that protected women and children that even Planned Parenthood did not seek to support.   He is openly hostile to business and aggressively hostile to Israel .   His wife treats being the First Lady as her personal American Express Black Card (arguably the most prestigious credit card in the world).   I condemn them because, as people are suffering, losing their homes, their jobs, their retirements, he and his family are arrogantly showing off their life of entitlement - as he goes about creating and fomenting class warfare. 
        I don't like them, and I neither apologize nor retreat from my public condemnation of them and of his policies.   We should condemn them for the disrespect they show our people, for his willful and unconstitutional actions pursuant to obeying the Constitutional parameters he is bound by, and his willful disregard for Congressional authority. 
        Dislike for them has nothing to do with the color of their skin; it has everything to do with their behavior, attitudes, and policies.   And I have open scorn for their constantly playing the race card. 
        It is my intention to do all within my ability to ensure their reign is one term.  I could go on, but let me conclude with this.  I condemn in the strongest possible terms the media for refusing to investigate them, as they did President Bush and President Clinton, and for refusing to label them for what they truly are.   There is no scenario known to man, whereby a white president and his wife could ignore laws, flaunt their position, and lord over the people, as these two are permitted out of fear for their color. 
        As I wrote in a syndicated column titled, "Nero In The White House" - "Never in my life, inside or outside of politics, have I witnessed such dishonesty in a political leader.  He is the most mendacious political figure I have ever witnessed.   Even by the low standards of his presidential predecessors, his narcissistic, contumacious arrogance is unequalled.  Using Obama as the bar, Nero would have to be elevated to sainthood...   Many in America wanted to be proud when the first person of color was elected president, but instead, they have been witness to a congenital liar, a woman who has been ashamed of America her entire life, failed policies, intimidation, and a commonality hitherto not witnessed in political leaders.   He and his wife view their life at our expense as an entitlement - while America 's people go homeless, hungry and unemployed." 

This was sent to me in an email I certainly agree with it!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Obamanomics Video

Reelect Obama and get more of the above!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Free Will

Intersting video though a bit academic sounding.  Has a good ending IMHO.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Actor Politics

A fun commercial for a dem by Steve Martin!

Actor Bill Murray on Friday said he believes Americans need to be more personally responsible for their well-being.
"I think we ought to be personally responsible," he said on CNBC's "Squawk Box" Friday morning. "I think if you can take care of yourself, and then maybe try to take care of someone else, that's sort of how you're supposed to live.
"It's not a question of asking other people for help or being rescued or anything like that," he continued. "I think we've sort of gotten used to someone looking out for us, and I don't think any other person is necessarily going to be counted on to look out for us.
"I think there's only so many people that can take care of themselves, and can take care of other people. And the rest of the people … they're useful in terms of compost for the whole planet, you know."
Murray said the United States is a "pioneer country," but that many seen to forget the discipline early Americans needed to have just to survive.
"Occasionally, it seeps in that they came in wagons from Illinois to Oregon or whatever. That they came in wagons and the wheels broke."
He said this image leads to thoughts such as, " 'Gee, that must have been hard for those women to push that wagon up that mountain.'
"And that's what they had to do," he said. "There was no option but to do it yourself, to have your own responsibility."

Another actor opinion from Bill Murray.  I enjoy both actors but am more in the Bill Murray camp on this!

Friday, October 5, 2012

2 Ads and a little Fun

Two ads put out by the two national committees.  Seems like the Dem one is a little weak with Chris Matthews complaining about aggression.

And a little fun with Jon Stewart!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Fat and Uniforms

There’s a bit of a problem with the NFL’s new Nike uniforms. It seems that, in some of the larger sizes, the uniforms are unflattering. And they’re downright revealing when subjected to massive amounts of sweat.
“I hate them. They are built for thin guys,” Alex Boone, the San Francisco 49ers’ 300-pound starting guard, told the Wall Street Journal’s Kevin Clark. “It makes me look like I have big old love handles.
In April, the league switched to Nike uniforms, which boast what it says is a “body-contoured fit.” Some bodies, it turns out, really shouldn’t be contoured.
“‘It looks like you ate a small baby,’” Boone said his wife told him when she saw him in the new jersey.
In Nike’s defense, the uniforms look just fine on the more chiseled players and the relentlessly buff LaRon Landry. And there’s a competitive reason for jerseys that are form-fitting: there’s less material for offensive linemen to grab onto, not that offensive linemen ever are guilty of holding. The problem is that the NFL is a league filled with 300-pounders.
“We have 40 years of experience in the football business and the idea in our products is for optimal performance and we work with the athletes to find fit and function,” a Nike spokesman told the WSJ. “The uniforms are available in a variety of sizes and cuts for different players with enhanced performance in mind.”

Just a fun article on sports!  You have to be very large to be an NFL lineman and to be over 300# and a reasonable height there tends to be a bit of fat.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012


My LW is a big supporter of Hemp (not MARIJUANA).  It has numerous industrial uses things like rope, etc..  So this video supports her.  It can be made into clothes, bags and so forth.

http://www.azhemp.org/Archive/Package/Uses/uses.html shows many uses of hemp such as,

SEEDS - the seeds are a highly nutritious food for both humans and animals, and yield hempseed oil for nutrition, soaps, cosmetics, paints, varnishes, etc.
FIBER - the durable natural fiber from the stalks can be used for textiles, clothing, canvas, rope, cordage, for archival grade paper, & composite fibers replacing heavier toxic fibers (e.g. fiberglass), and building materials made with recycled plastic and fiber.

· Composite Fibers:
Natural fiber composites are now emerging as a realistic alternative to wood-filled and glass-reinforced composites, especially in automobiles. The can deliver the same performance at lower weights, or be 25-30% stronger at the same weight. Moreover, they exhibit a favorable non-brittle fracture on impact, another important requirement in the passenger compartment.

· Paper:
During the processing of hemp, a large quantity of waste material is produced. It was recognized rather early that this material could be used as a feedstock for papermaking.

· Plastics:
Hemp hurds also serve as a renewable source of raw material for the production of plastics, and are much cleaner and more environmentally attractive than petroleum.

· Fuels:
Use of the hemp hurds as a biomass for fuel production is attractive

Sports over People

I am tired of sports teams getting public money and buying off politicians.  The Supreme Court in the New Hampshire land grap in 2005.  There are more important things to spend money on than on Sports.  Below is a (old) reaction to the ridiculous court ruling.

East Coast activists want to build the 'Lost Liberty Inn' on the property of U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter. The measure is on the March 14 ballot in the small town of Weare NH, where Souter resides. This Sunday activists staged rally in Weare to 'turn the eminent domain tables' on Souter.
One of the more amusing stories making the rounds is how a little known activist group is trying to "turn the tables" on a Supreme Court Justice who corruptly ruled on extending government's power to take away private land under eminent domain.
U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter is getting a "taste of his own medicine" from a New Hampshire group called the Committee for the Preservation of Natural Rights and another California human rights group, both trying to make a loud public statement by getting Souter's home in the small town of Weare, New Hampshire, seized under eminent domain.
Both activist groups have been angered and are leading the charge against a recent high court ruling, making it virtually "a walk in the park" for local, state and federal entities tt to seize people's homes and property for economic development under what has become a watered down version of the eminent domain laws.  http://rense.com/general69/souter.htm

Monday, October 1, 2012

Another Obama Supporter

Don't need new jobs if Obama gives you a phone!  Intersting what people want from a president!

It is hard tor me to understand why anyone would vote for 4 more years of the last 4 years.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

She Fixed It

We bought a new stove many years ago.  About a little after a year of owning it (there was a 1 year warranty),  the front right burner stopped working.  I opened up the top and looked at the burner and it looked OK (an electric stove) and decided to eventually replace the burner element.

Well it has been many years since that occurred.  And I still haven't replaced the element, I have looked online for replacement elements and found one for about $80 plus shipping, but that was as far as I got.

Yesterday my LW, inadvertently turned the switch on for that burner and a plastic oatmeal box top started to burn, filling the kitchen and living room with lots of smoke.  Miraculously she had fixed it.  Later that night I tried making some popcorn on the "broke" burner and it worked.

I always knew my LW was brilliant, but never knew she was so mechanically gifted.

Either she fixed it or the burner was tired of just sitting there!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Just a Little Fun

Funny but perhaps a little true!

Amazon Prime v. Netflix

We have been a Amazon Prime member for about a year.  With it you get free 2nd day shipping (though it is only 2 day if you order on Monday thru Wednesday and we seem to order a lot of stuff on Friday or Saturday).  Also they have their Prime Videos which include movies and TV show series.  Right now it is $78 a year (or $6.50 per month).  The main problem with their videos is that the videos do not have Closed Captioning.  I find that that is a great item to have especially when the actors talk quietly or during loud times.  Also we have had their video dropping out of some shows.

We have started a 30 day free trial with Netflix.  They have most of the movies that Prime has and most of the TV shows.  They have some TV shows that Prime doesn't and some movies.  But their main advantage is that they have closed captioning on most movies and new TV shows.  They charge $7.99 a month for their service.  We have had a little flickering with some of the shows,

Now we have to decide which service we want to keep.  It is theoretically possible to keep both, but I am CHEAP!

With the prime membership, we tend to buy more at Amazon since we can get free shipping even with a small order vice the $25 minimum for free shipping.

Our prime membership renewal date is 9/28, so we need to decide by then.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Eat Out

On Friday, we ate at a Japanese restaurant.  It was the Swedish Glee Club annual dinner.  It was at Ron of Japan (I didn't know that Ron was Japanese).  When we got there there was a table with fruit, cheese, and what I assume was sushi.

After a while we went into a dining room.  There were 8 of us to a table with a grill in the middle.  Our chef came and started putting veggies on the grill and then divided them up for us, then added some sprouts and divided them up.

He then caused a large flame, which was intersting.  Next he added the main meat/ chicken/ or fish onto the grill cutting them up and served them.

It was intersting how he cooked the steak (we had chicken),  He cooked it for a while and then gave the  medium rare people a taste and if it was OK gave them their portion and then continued to medium and medium well people.

We had a choice of white rice or fried (white) rice,  I had fried and my LW had white rice.

The dessert was ice cream or sherbet or fruit (I didn't have any I was full after eating my portion and a part of my LW's).

All in all, a great meal.  It was a first for me eating with the grill right there even though I had visited Japan once.  I highly recommend the experience and the food!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Exercise / Play

Last weekend, it was beautiful.  The temperature was in the mid-70's and little wind.

I was bicycling and noticed NO kids out playing.

When I was younger (pre-teen) we were always outside playing.  In the summer, we played baseball.  There were 4 of us, so we played 2 on 2 with right field a foul ball and invisible runners and pitcher's hand was out.

In the fall, we played football.  Touch with 2 on 2.  Mainly passing since, it was so hard to get away running (we played in the street).

In the winter, we played hockey on a frozen creek or pond.  You could not raise the puck to score since we didn't have protective gear or goalie sticks.

We bicycled everywhere, like the Zoo or to play.  Our parents did not have to drive us everywhere.

It seems that now-a-days, kids around here must have video games or something.  We were not fat and were always on the move.

My grandkids (who live far away) are always active, camping or backpacking or kayaking.  They are not obese and are fit.  It was just hard to see such a beautiful day wasted by the kids around here!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Driver's License

I have just come back from renewing my driver's license.  In general, the state of IL is incompetent, but the Secretary of State's office was a wonderful experience.  The last time  I was there it was a madhouse, with long lines and snarly people.

This time I went in and immediately I was waited on by a man at a computer.  He gave me a number and said to go to aisle 5 and there was my number at the top in lights and the nice lady was waiting for me.  She asked me if I lived at the same address which I answered yes and then had me look in the little box.  In the box, she asked which side the flashing lights were, which fortuneately I answered correctly (right, left. Both). Then she told me to read line 5, the last time the guy just told me to read a line.  Once again, with just a little squinting I did.  She then asked me seven questions like did I have a license from any other states (no) and was my license on hold due to a criminal case (no).  Then sent me to the cashier.

There was 1 person in front of me, but she had only Visa which they did not take, so he sent her to a ATM machine.  I used a check (since being cheap I didn't want to pay the surcharge) and of course, my pen was not working, so the guy gave me apen to use that did work.  I wrote the check and he sent me the camera guy.

I had to wait a minute or two and then he took my picture (after having me sign an electronic form).  Fortuneately I did not break the camera.

All told it was about 10-15 minutes and very pleasant, if only the IL IRS people were like these people.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Prof makes Students sign Dem pledge


A college professor has been placed on leave after she allegedly forced her class to sign a pledge to vote for President Obama in the upcoming elections.
Early last week Professor Sharon Sweet at Brevard Community College (BCC) allegedly told students to sign a pledge that reads: “I pledge to vote for President Obama and Democrats up and down the ticket.”
A college professor has been placed on leave after she allegedly forced her class to sign a pledge to vote for President Obama in the 2012 elections.
The pledge was printed off of GottaVote.org, a website funded by the Obama campaign.
University administrators said they learned about the incident late Thursday afternoon and launched an investigation, after they received a phone call from a concerned parent.
“Based on the allegations, Associate Professor Sweet has requested, and been granted, a leave of absence without pay effective immediately,” reads a statement put out by John Glisch, Associate Vice President for Communications at BCC.
“The college will continue its investigation into the matter, which will include interviews with all students in her class,” continues the statement.
Sweet’s actions may have also violated Florida’s election laws.
Section 104.31, of Title IX in chapter 104, states that “no officer or employee of the state... shall... use his or her official authority or influence for the purpose of interfering with an election or nomination of officer or influencing another person’s vote or affecting the result thereof.”

Young America’s Foundation has released the Youth Misery Index (YMI), which has reached a record high (90.6) and has grown more than 25 percent in four years—17 percent since the Obama administration took office.
To calculate the index, Young America’s Foundation adds together youth unemployment, average graduating student debt (in thousands), and national debt per capita (in thousands). At no point in recent history has life been harder for America’s young people.

The Youth Misery Index represents a three-pronged attack on young Americans’ financial security—educational debt from their past, unemployment in the present, and a future plagued by the burden of massive government debt.

Youth unemployment is at 17.4 percent—one of the highest levels since World War II. Average graduating student debt has reached a record-breaking $26,300. National debt per capita is $46,900—the highest ever. Add it up, and the Youth Misery Index comes out to 90.6 (17.4 + 26.3 + 46.9 = 90.6). What does this number mean? Like Jimmy Carter’s Misery Index, the YMI uncovers some real threats to our nation’s prosperity.

So a College Prof decides to have her students pledge to vote for a administration that has a youth unemployment of 17.4%, higher college debt and a horrible per capita debt from the national debt?

It is obvious (to me) that they are pledging to vote for more misery.  I thought "I knew most everything" when I was in College, hopefully the graduating students are smarter than their professor!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Chicago Schools

Researching the topic, I am amazed by the data.
Chicago teachers already make an average $75,000. That's more than other big city teachers earn, AND much more than Chicago's private school teachers get ($50,000). Because the teachers only work part of the year, they make more per hour than architects, nurses and accountants. When they do work, they don't work long hours. Even though most bring work home, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says the average public school teacher works only 36.5 hours a week. Chicago kids even get less instruction than kids in other big cities.
The Chicago union doesn't want its teachers judged by their students' performance. I understand why. Ninety-three percent of the teachers are rated either "Superior" or Excellent". The kids don't do as well: 80% of eighth graders are "not proficient" in math.
Union teachers know that many of their colleagues aren't great teachers. Only 12% of American students attend private schools, but, 39% of Chicago public school teachers send their children to private schools. Anti school-choice politicians are no less hypocritical: President Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Jesse Jackson, Hillary Clinton and Al Gore (to name just a few) all send or sent their children to private schools.
Now thousands of Chicago children are kept out of school. Your supermarkets and movie theaters aren't closed because of strikes. That's because private companies have competition. Government monopolies don't.

It looks like maybe the Chicago school strike is almost over, it also looks like the administration backed down again.  Most of my teachers were good. It looks like Chicago teachers would rather send their kids to private schools, what do they know that the poor other parents don't?

Friday, September 14, 2012

Bears Lose, Bears Lose

Since I live between Chicago and Milwaukee, the local sports radio stations are either Pro-Bears & Anti-Packers OR Anti-Bears & Pro-Packers.  I fall on the Pro-GB side.  But after the Bears play, the Pro-Bear station has Doug Buffone and OB both former Bears commenting on the game.  When the Bears lose, they are really great.  They rip into the Bears in a very (to me) entertaining manner.

Actually, I am a Detroit fan which has been sort of frustrating until recently.  So at the moment the Lions are in first (at least till they play SF who crushed GB last week) place.

The Bears fans (as I guess all of us fans are) seem rather arrogant and yet when they lose, they say the Bears will never win again and all the coaches should be fired and the QB traded.  Of course when the next game is a win, they will win the SuperBowl and never lose again!

Even I will have to admit that the Bears' defense played very well, especially with the Bears' QB giving the ball back to GB every chance he could.  But think how bad it would have been if the refs had called all of the Bears' LT's holds (tackles).

Fortunately for the Bears, they play another rebuilding team next (St.Louis).


New York City's Board of Health opened up a new, experimental front in the war on obesity Thursday, passing a rule banning sales of big sodas and other sugary drinks at restaurants, concession stands and other eateries.
The regulation, which was proposed in the spring by Mayor Michael Bloomberg and approved by panel of health experts after several months of review, puts a 16-ounce size limit on cups and bottles of non-diet soda, sweetened teas, and other calorie-packed beverages.
The ban will apply in fast-food joints, movie houses and Broadway theaters, workplace cafeterias, and most other places selling prepared food.
It doesn't cover beverages sold in supermarkets or most convenience stores.

Once again, government "must" take over for parents.  Much of fat comes from a lack of parental supervision (too much video games or not enough exercice)  not because of soft drinks' sizes.  Can you only buy one?

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Celebrating Russian Ships?

On the last night of the Democratic National Convention, a retired Navy four-star took the stage to pay tribute to veterans. Behind him, on a giant screen, the image of four hulking warships reinforced his patriotic message.
But there was a big mistake in the stirring backdrop: those are Russian warships.
While retired Adm. John Nathman, a former commander of Fleet Forces Command, honored vets as America’s best, the ships from the Russian Federation Navy were arrayed like sentinels on the big screen above.
These were the very Soviet-era combatants that Nathman and Cold Warriors like him had once squared off against.
“The ships are definitely Russian,” said noted naval author Norman Polmar after reviewing hi-resolution photos from the event. “There’s no question of that in my mind.”
Naval experts concluded the background was a photo composite of Russian ships that were overflown by what appear to be U.S. trainer jets. It remains unclear how or why the Democratic Party used what’s believed to be images of the Russian Black Sea Fleet at their convention. ...

The veteran who spotted the error and notified Navy Times said he was immediately taken aback.
“I was kind of in shock,” said Rob Barker, 38, a former electronics warfare technician who left the Navy in 2006. Having learned to visually identify foreign ships by their radars, Barker recognized the closest ship as the Kara-class cruiser Kerch.
“An immediate apology [from the committee] would be very nice,” Barker said. “Maybe acknowledge the fact that yes, they screwed up.”
The background — featured in the carefully choreographed hour leading up to the president’s Sept. 6 speech accepting the Democratic Party’s nomination — showed four ships with radar designs not used in the U.S. fleet.
For example, the ship in the foreground, on the far right, has a square radar antenna at the top of its masthead. That is the MR-700 Podberezovik 3-D early warning radar, commonly identified as “Flat Screen” for its appearance, a three-dimensional early warning radar mounted on the Kerch, said Eric Wertheim, editor of “Combat Fleets of the World.”
Similarly, the third ship has a MR-310 “Head Net” air search radar, shaped like two off-set bananas, at its masthead and is mostly likely the guided missile destroyer Smetlivyy. The first two ships seem to be Krivak-class frigates, but it’s hard to discern from the silhouette, experts said.
But the fact they are Russian ships is not in doubt. In addition to the ship’s radar arrays and hulls, which are dissimilar from U.S. warships, the photo features one more give-away: a large white flag with a blue ‘X’ at the ships’ sterns.
Polmar, who authored “The Naval Institute Guide to the Soviet Navy,” recognized the blue ‘X’-mark: “The X is the Cross of St. Andrew’s, which is a Russian Navy symbol,” Polmar said. (An anchored U.S. warship, by contrast, flies the American flag on its stern.)
Based on this specific group of these ship types, one naval expert concluded that this was most likely a photo of the Black Sea Fleet.
“Ships are all Black Sea Fleet,” A. D. Baker III, a retired Office of Naval Intelligence analyst, told Navy Times after looking at the image. “These four ships, at the time the photo was taken, constituted the entire major surface combatant component of the Black Sea Fleet,” Baker said, noting the photo was likely to be six years old or older. (The Kerch is now on the list to be scrapped, Baker said.)

It is good to know that the Democrats believe that the Russians are the friendlies!  It is not that hard to find real pictures of American ships! see below from Navy Flickr.

Attribution Some rights reserved by Official U.S. Navy Imagery

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Enough to REtire

Fidelity’s new guide estimates that workers should save at least eight times their salary by the time they retire at age 67, in order to replace 85% of their pre-retirement income. (To reach that 85% replacement rate, Fidelity adds in expected Social Security benefits.) The guide offers specific age-based savings goals to meet along the way.
Retirement savings
300.5 times current salary
351 X
402 X
453 X
504 X
555 X
606 X
657 X
678 X
For example, Fidelity says that a 35-year-old should be on track to cover her basic retirement expenses if she’s saved one year’s worth of her current salary and she continues to save at a specified rate until she retires at age 67. For a 40-year-old, it’s two times salary; for a 55-year-old it’s five times salary.

Also, Fidelity assumes you’ll work and save continuously until you’re 67, and will die at 92. Your investments will earn an annual 5.5% along the way, and your salary will grow 1.5% a year over and above a general inflation rate of 2.3%, according to Fidelity’s assumption

Interesting to me at least, of course, I am retired, I certainly hope I have that much!