12/05/2016

Advice From "Mad Dog"

By way of Instapundit comes this little bit of wisdom from Donald Trump's nominee for Secretary of Defense, “Mad Dog” Mattis:


Heh.

12/04/2016

Thoughts On A Sunday

This weekend is the last we'll see of some of the better weather for a while. We have colder temps, higher winds, and the possibility of some snowfall over the next four or five days.

In other words, winter weather is arriving.

While not all of our winter prep is done, most of it is. The few things that still need doing aren't critical, but they'll still get done over the next couple of days.

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I still find it interesting that, after all this time, it surprises me when I meet people whose scribblings I have read, either on blogs or in the local paper's letters to the editor. More often that not they are quite different in person and when discussing things with them face to face. I think it's the pseudo-anonymity that drives quite a bit of it.

My next-door neighbor, a transplant from the People's Republic of Massachusetts, sounds like a card carrying member of the Communist Party of the United States in his letters to the local paper. But when I have the opportunity to talk with him face to face, his positions seem much more moderate and far less emotional.

About the only person I have found to be exactly the way they have portrayed themselves on line or in the papers is a radical Leftist academic teaching in one of our local state universities. Even my neighbor thinks this guy is so far out there that he's lost somewhere in interstellar space.

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Did Trump win Nevada?

If this is any indication of the voting problems in just one district in Las Vegas, I'd have to say the probability that Trump actually won in Nevada is pretty high.

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Talk about a major #FAIL in regards to Europe's drive to preserve the environment!

They've been cutting down trees in protected forests to use for fuel in biomass electric generation plants. That's as bad as the UK importing wood from the US to do the same thing.

Didn't anyone realize just how disconnected and stupid the whole concept is? Obviously, not.

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We've finished the last of our Christmas decorating, putting up the window 'candles' as a finishing touch. Our tree has been up and decorated since Friday evening as well as some of the other 'garnishes' to give The Manse a more festive look. We've never really been into outside decoration, preferring to keep what decorations that can be seen from the outside more low key.

However, BeezleBub and Red Head Girl have decorated the exterior of the barn where there apartment is located, mostly with white lights. Deb and I contributed a little splash of color with a green and red lighted Christmas wreath to hang near the peak of the barn roof just to provide a little contrast with the rest of the decorations.

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The New England Patriots played the LA Rams in Foxborough this afternoon, beating them 26-10. This was quarterback Tom Brady's 201st win, making him the winningest NFL quarterback ever.

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We already know many liberals and the LSM have a very low opinion of a good portion of the American people. But it takes testicular fortitude to actually say so on national TV.

And they wonder why Trump won.

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Then as if that wasn't enough, here's what white liberals really think about black voters.

They really have a low opinion of the capabilities of black voters. Can it be the “soft racism of low expectations” that so many of the American Left practice?

Of course it is.

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This is something I've known for a long time, have written about a number of times, and know to still be true. What is it I'm talking about?

The bogus unemployment numbers being touted by the feds.

The 'official' unemployment numbers come from what is called the U3 rate. The actual unemployment rate should be taken from the U6 rate, which encompasses not just those who are out of work and collecting unemployment, but those whose benefits have expired, those who have given up looking for work in their fields, and the underemployed who are working in jobs far below their previous level of employment.

Even Donald Trump knows the U.S non-farm payroll numbers and unemployment numbers are bogus.

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Oh, I wish I had seen the looks on their faces when Dick Cheney said this to Barbara Starr on CNN in regards to Trump and the news media:

He's at the point where we don't need you guys anymore.

Of course Trump should thank the MSM for all of the free press he received during the campaign season. After all, it meant he spent only a fraction of what Hillary spent on her campaign. Then again, Trump is a master at manipulating the media and he played 'em like a fiddle.

Heh.

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Speaking of the relationship between Trump and the media, Eric The Viking has this take on it.

Yes, Trump is stirring the pot on some well-earned criticism on the media for political gain.  But his tactic would fall flat if Americans maintained trust in the media which they most definitely have not....

Trust in the media is at an all time low. And why not? The media ceased being a source of information and became a propaganda wing of the Left decades ago. However, these days they don't even pretend to be unbiased anymore. That, and we already know just how much disdain they have for most Americans. Maybe that's why we have such disdain for them.

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David Starr wonders who is the “Alt Right”?

Like him, I haven't a clue. They seem to be that always mysterious and invisible “They” that everyone is always talking about. Could they be, as David wonders, “just 50 Internet trolls?”

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where winter is going to make itself known for the next few days, woodstoves will be running 24/7, and where a whole lot of people will be wishing they had their snow tires on their cars and SUVs.

12/03/2016

Which Pipeline Are You Protesting Again?

With the on and off stories about protests about various pipelines, the latest being the Dakota Access Pipeline, one has to wonder just how many pipelines there really are. The handy-dandy map below certainly brings the matter into perspective:


One of the proposed pipelines that made quite a bit of news here in New Hampshire was the Kinder Morgan pipeline that would have brought large amounts of natural gas into New England. Looking at the map above it looks like there are few serving New England. That certainly explains why natural gas prices always skyrocket during the winter around here as most of it comes into the area on huge LNG tankers...from Yemen. Yet the very same people who complain about the spikes in natural gas prices (along with the same for electric rates as a lot of power plants in the Northeast run on natural gas) have worked hard to prevent any new pipelines from being built that will carry natural gas from Pennsylvania into this area.

Talk about a major disconnect from reality!

12/02/2016

The $15 Minimum Wage Is Already Killing Jobs And Businesses

Prior to the election, the Left and their minions have pushed for a $15 minimum wage, selling it as a means of “lifting the working poor out of poverty.” Since very few of the working poor were making minimum wage, it was a specious argument. Of the 2.4 million people in the US making minimum wage, most of them are between 17 and 24 years of age, meaning that most of them are likely in entry level jobs. But that hasn't stopped the Left from pursuing a nationwide minimum wage of $15 ignoring the major downside to such a large increase – increased unemployment. They honestly don't believe it will actually be a problem. However there are many examples showing how the artificial doubling of the minimum wage is already having an negative effect in cities and states that have already raised their minimum wage to well above the federal minimum wage. One of the biggest examples of the downside to this outrageous hike in the minimum wage – McDonald's is replacing some of their staff with self-serve ordering kiosks, nationwide.

Let’s start with automation. In 2013, when the Fight for $15 was still in its growth stage, I and others warned that union demands for a much higher minimum wage would force businesses with small profit margins to replace full-service employees with costly investments in self-service alternatives. At the time, labor groups accused business owners of crying wolf. It turns out the wolf was real.

Earlier this month, McDonald’s announced the nationwide roll-out of touchscreen self-service kiosks. In a video the company released to showcase the new customer experience, it’s striking to see employees who once would have managed a cash register now reduced to monitoring a customer’s choices at an iPad-style kiosk.

But wait, it gets worse!

It’s not just McDonald’s that has embraced job-replacing technology. Numerous restaurant chains (both quick service and full service) have looked to computer tablets as a solution for rising labor costs that won't adversely impact the customer’s experience. Eatsa, a fully-automated restaurant concept, now has five locations—all in cities or states that have embraced a $15 minimum wage. And in a scene stolen from The Jetsons, the Starship delivery robot is now navigating the streets of San Francisco with groceries and other consumer goods. The company’s founder pointed to a rising minimum wage as a key factor driving the growth of his automated delivery business.

Some businesses have been driven out of business or been forced to relocate due to the new minimum wage driving their labor costs upwards, in some cases more than doubling. This has meant many of the low margin businesses have either cut staff hours, cut staff numbers, closed their doors, or moved. Raising prices to cover the much higher labor costs were a non-starter because now their goods or services are too expensive for some of their customers.

To see just how many businesses have already been affected, the website The Faces Of 15 lists a number of businesses in a number fo cities and states that have been adversely affected by these higher minimum wages. Some might surprise you.

While a $15 minimum wage will make those on the Left feel better about themselves because the believe they have 'helped' those less fortunate than themselves, the reality is that millions of gainfully employed people will lose their jobs because of this supposed 'help'. Of course the Left won't see that it was their actions that actually caused the problem to begin with.

11/27/2016

Thoughts On A Sunday

Despite Black Friday. It's actually been somewhat quiet here in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire. There were a few places around here that saw the shopping frenzy, one of those being one of the local outlet malls, but for the most part it hasn't gotten too crazy.

I think the after-effects of all that Thanksgiving fare are still making themselves known.

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This ought to work well as a business plan:

The CEO of an Albuquerque-based internet marketing firm has issued a letter telling clients who support President-elect Donald Trump to take their business elsewhere.

Hmm, blowing off about half of your customer base because you disagree with their political choices doesn't bode well for any broadbased business. As such, I would think that the shareholders of that company, assuming it is a not owned by the CEO, would do the prudent thing and fire him before he can do any more damage.

In an interview this week with KOB, a local NBC News affiliate, Mr. Blanchfield said he had a “moral obligation” to stand up for what he believes is right.

“It is my firm belief that we elected a fascist as our next president,” he said.

As long as he's prepared to suffer the consequences of his actions, so be it. However his investors might not be so sanguine about his actions.

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Here's yet another company willing to shut itself off from half of its potential customer base as well.

Did any of these folks actually take any business or marketing classes? One has to wonder seeing they're doing their darnedest to cripple themselves and, perhaps, put themselves out of business.

Of course if they do go under I expect them to blame Trump for their poor decisions.

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Irony indeed.

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Even Forbes magazine is hopping on to the EMdrive bandwagon, particularly in light of tests run by NASA at their Eagleworks lab facility showing the new technology works as advertised.

The problem? The EMdrive violates Newton's Third Law of Motion which states “For every action there’s an equal and opposite reaction.”

That third law is known as the conservation of momentum, and is true not only in Newtonian mechanics, but in electromagnetism, General Relativity and all of quantum field theory. It’s the one law that Newton came up with that still holds, with no exceptions, today.

But if the EMdrive is truly reactionless, then Newton is wrong. Also, Einstein is wrong, Maxwell is wrong and all of quantum physics is wrong. There’s a fundamental symmetry that causes momentum conservation: translational symmetry. It means that if my system is over here, at a certain point in space, it should obey the same laws as if it’s over there, at a different point in space. But if momentum conservation isn’t truly fundamental, then translational symmetry cannot be a good symmetry of the Universe. In other words, there must be a preferred location, where the laws of physics are different in one location than others. The laws of physics, all of a sudden, depend on position.

Umm....oops? This could certainly upset the physics apple cart unless someone can explain how it works and does not violate Newton's Third Law.

If nothing else the EMdrive is pushing pure scientific research in an area of science so many of us have found fascinating throughout our lives.

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Make them live up to their own rules. Otherwise they show themselves to be hypocrites, right?

(H/T Instapundit)

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According to some study, across 33 rich countries, only 5% of the population has high computer-related abilities, and only a third of people can complete medium-complexity tasks.

Reading the comments to the linked post I believe that some of the commenters have confused “high computer-related abilities” with the ability to code and learn new programming languages. But from what I've been able to glom from the original article (linked elsewhere in the original post), it is the ability to use sophisticated applications to their fullest extent that comprise the 5%. Of that 5%, maybe 10 to 15% of those actually code. The third of users that can “complete medium-complexity tasks” I take to mean being able to use things like the various Office suites (Microsoft Office, Open Office, Libre, etc) to do more than some basic word processing, presentation creation, or spreadsheet functions.

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Do you feel like a fraud at work? Don't be surprised as it turns out that around 70% of people have experienced this feeling. It seems like it's a version of the Dunning-Kruger Effect, something I've covered before.

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The New England Patriots played the New York Jets at the Meadowlands today, beating the Jets 22-17. That makes the Pats 9-2 for the season so far.

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Will the cognitive dissonance that is part and parcel of the Left's world view be shattered as Donald Trump fails to live up to their opinion of him? Will they swoon if, as some of us expect, he will end up being pragmatic in regards to the Presidency and actually does a decent job assembling his cabinet, creating and enacting his policies, foreign and domestic?

Or will their cast-in-stone beliefs not allow them to see what is actually happening, much as they could not see that The Won was not the answer to their prayers, but instead a divider that has helped destroy their narrative?

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where we've survived another Thanksgiving and the follow on Black Friday, leftovers are on the menu for the next few days, and where all of the parking lots at the various malls and outlets will be jammed until Christmas.

11/26/2016

Good Riddance To Bad Rubbish

Fidel Castro finally bit it, dying at age 90.

It's about friggin' time.

Despite some people here in the US paying homage to the brutal dictator that caused endless misery for the Cuban people, the celebrations in Miami for his passing show us the true measure of the man.

As bad as the Batista regime was in Cuba, communist rule was far worse. It's time that the apologists for all things communist come to realize that.

I figure that will happen at the same time those wearing the Che Guevara tee-shirts stop wearing them when the realize that Che was a brutal murderer and rapist, covering himself under the revolutionary mantle as an excuse to be a monster.

11/25/2016

They Know Not What They Do - And They Don't Want To

With electors still being threatened by the self-anointed 'elite' PC police – people who didn't even bother to vote – one has to wonder if they've given any thought to just what a reaction there would be if some of the electors gave in to those threats? Would there be law suits? Would there be riots? Or worse, would there be a civil war between the Americans who firmly believe in the Constitution and those who see it as nothing more than a historical curiosity that stands in the way of yet another hellish socialist utopia?

Of the options I think that the first and then the third options are most likely. When the rule of law breaks down, so does the society. Once that happens, war is inevitable. And given the proclivities of the two groups, I think the second group is likely to lose because the first has all of the guns and the will to use them to preserve the rights paid for with the blood and treasure of those who have gone before us.

That the Progressive youth think we should abandon the electoral college shows us just how ignorant and close-minded they are. With no understanding of our history or the reasons why the the Framers of the Constitution codified the electoral college, they tread down a dangerous path that can lead to far more strife, death and destruction than they can possibly imagine They believe in tyranny of the majority. (Don't let their protest to the contrary fool you as it has fooled them.) They want to see their version of the Reign of Terror, though I doubt we'll see the random mob-driven killings as seen in France. But they will use the power of the popular vote to strip away one right after another from the minority “for the good of the people.” It's something that's right out of Atlas Shrugged, something they have shown more than once they are willing to embrace.

All of this has to make me wonder if they have truly stopped thinking for themselves, (this assumes they ever had that capability) and are capable of merely parroting what they have been spoon fed by their indoctrination coordinators – once known as teachers and professors. Has critical thinking been replaced by what makes them feel better about themselves? From what I've been seeing from the group of spoiled brats who call themselves Progressives, the answer is yes.

They really don't give a rat's ass about who they'll be hurting as long as they feel better about themselves. They'll continue feeling that way right up to the point that the Deplorables figure they've had enough and start showing them the error of their ways in the most forceful and unpleasant way ever – civil war. It might not be a shooting war, but it will pit “brother against brother” and our country will be all the weaker for it. The differences will be all that matter and the similarities, those things we share in common, will be ignored. But then that's what they've been striving for all along, isn't it? After all, they need someone to look down upon as inferior to them – meaning we Deplorables – so they can feel better about themselves and what they've done all in the name or 'progress'.

OK, enough of my rant. I admit it is a little disjointed, but that happens when I find myself becoming distracted by the actions of willfully ignorant children who do not have anyone else's best interests at heart.

11/23/2016

Interview With A Clueless SJW Robo-Spokesthing

I find it interesting that SJW's find ways of explaining away all of the offensive things they do all in the name of “social justice” without once thinking about the hypocrisy of their words and actions. They truly do not understand that the very things they protest against are the very things they are doing, though usually covered up in deceptive language (think 1984 and Newspeak).

What's truly scary is watching one of their spokesthings trying to justify its actions on its college campus. (I refuse to dignify the creature appearing on the linked video as a spokesman because, quite frankly, it appears to be nothing more than a programmed robot set to parrot the talking points of the SJW 'movement'. Or maybe it is one of a multitude of possible gender combinations that absolutely nobody understands or can define, hence “spokesthing”. That's about as gender neutral as I can get.)

Watch Tucker Carlson demolish the SJW in regards to Hampshire College in western Massachusetts taking down all of the American flags across campus because it represents “misogynistic, Islamophobic, anti-immigrant, anti-Semitic and anti-LGBTQ rhetoric and behaviors.” It's obvious to me that the college's president who uttered those words has never been outside the US and visited the multitude of cultures/countries (like those in the Middle East and parts of Africa) that are all of those thins (except Islamophobic) in spades.

Here's the video:


That's just creepy.

11/20/2016

Thoughts On A Sunday

The fickleness of fall weather is displaying itself, with temps here in central New Hampshire having been around the 60°F mark yesterday and seeing temperatures plummet towards the freezing mark today as a cold front swept through. The front was accompanied by rain (and snow in some of the higher elevations).

We have been hoping for more rain before the ground freezes as we are still in the midst of a drought. At least the rain we've received to this point hasn't fallen on frozen ground, but that will change over the next week or so.

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You know the left is getting desperate when they label someone like Jeff Sessions as a racist, yet it was Sessions who helped desegregate schools in Alabama and got the death penalty for a KKK murderer.

The Left has so overused the racism change that it made it almost meaningless as it is being come to be known as the default charge for anyone the Left disagrees with.

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I don't know about you, but when I buy tickets to see a concert or a Broadway show, I do so with the intent of being entertained. I do not want to be preached at by people I disagree with.

Maybe that's something the cast of Hamilton should have thought about before they took the opportunity to lambaste VP-elect Mike Pence during their performance.

To say the backlash has been bigger than they thought it would be would be understating the matter.

Deb and I had attended a Bette Midler concert back when Dubya was in office and we were treated to a diatribe against Bush by Ms. Midler, something that ruined our enjoyment of her show. We ended up leaving part way through, though we should have gotten up immediately and demanded our money back as we had paid to attend a concert, not a political rally.

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You should see this 'documentary' on the mental illness that is Leftism and its off-shoot, Social Justice Warrior syndrome. That a majority of them are white middle class children shows just how insidious and widespread this mental disease is. It is obviously communicable and is spread through contact in our public schools.

It's a wonder that the CDC isn't on the case in regards to this epidemic.

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Also by way of Granite Grok comes this quote from former 4-star Marine General James Mattis:

Be polite. Be professional. But have a plan to kill everyone you meet.
Yup. I'd say that just about sums it up in regards to our defense.

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The purely politically correct actions taken by a number of state Attorney Generals as a means of forcing ExxonMobil to pony up billions of dollars in cash for supposedly suppressing 'knowledge' it knew AGW was real and it's lobbying efforts against the AGW alarmists has had an unexpected turn.

A federal judge in Texas has ordered Massachusetts AG Maura Healey and New York AG Eric Schneiderman to appear in Dallas on December 13th for depositions in regards to a lawsuit filed by ExxonMobil to block any further investigation by the states in regards to its stand on AGW and any paid studies or lobbying efforts on its behalf on the matter.

The warmist lobby is learning the hard way that actions have consequences, particularly politically motivated legal actions.

It couldn't happen to a nicer bunch.

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As an aside, our family has decided to celebrate Thansgiving a little early seeing that we will all be in different places on Thanksgiving Day. Deb will be working that day at the Veterans Home. BeezleBub will be in rural New York celebrating Thanksgiving with his aunt, uncle, and two of his cousins. I and the WP Mom will be at the younger WP Sister's home south of Boston, hence the 'little' Thanksgiving gathering today with Deb, BeezleBub, and the WP Mom.

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Speaking of Thanksgiving, BeezleBub spent yesterday and today slaughtering turkeys at the farm. BeezleBub, Farmer Andy and his missus, as well as two of the other farmhands spent all day yesterday and today attending to the task. Deb and I stopped by today, bringing coffee and cinnamon rolls to feed the troops as they continued with their tasks. Deb even took a few pictures for her sister showing the process. Deb has no plans to post any of those pics on Facebook, knowing the type of backlash and crap she'll get from the food-comes-from-the-supermarket crowd.

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With the cooler weather we're going to see over the next few days, something we must keep track of is that Solar Cycle 24 is turning out to be the weakest seen in 200 years.

What does that mean?

It may be auguring a period of global cooling as previous quiet solar cycles have. Both the Maunder and Dalton Minimums tracked the Little Ice Age, a period between the late 1300's and the late 1700's/early 1800's. If cycle 24 is a precursor for a series of quiet solar cycles, we might start seeing colder temperatures worldwide. In the Northern Hemisphere that means much colder and longer winters.

If nothing else it might show the warmists that a warmer world is a lot better than a colder one.

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The New England Patriots played the San Francisco 49ers today in San Francisco, beating them 30-17.

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The hew and cry from the Left about Steve Bannon taking on a position with the Trump Administration has to make one wonder if the Left has lost their friggin' minds.

Accusations from the Left of Bannon's supposed antisemitism have run rampant. But there's a problem with those accusations, that being they have absolutely no proof of any kind from anyone that Bannon is antisemitic. The only hint of Bannon's antisemitism?

His ex-wife's claim during their rather contentious divorce.

I don't know about you, but I would take any claim or accusation made during a messy divorce with a huge grain of salt considering how many accusations are flung far and wide during such proceedings. That there are no other examples or proof of his supposed antisemitism is a pretty good indicator that none exists. It is merely a faux meme trying to become 'true' in order to discredit someone who the Left detests with a passion that goes beyond all reason.

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where early evening snow has fallen, the people are glad the Patriots have won, and where everyone is getting ready for Thanksgiving.

11/18/2016

1996 Democrat Versus 2016 Republican On Illegal Immigration

What a difference 20 years makes.

Compare and contrast:


Talk about hypocrisy! As I have said more than once, if the Democrats didn't have double standards they'd have no standards at all.....