Not that their absence has meant I can slack off from my distaff duties. There's been plenty to do in and around The Manse. And while I didn't get to everything (I never do as the 'to-do' list is quite long), I got a goodly portion done. Much of this work is in anticipation of our Independence Day activities (most of which will take place the weekend prior to the Fourth because both BeezleBub and Deb have to work that day).
************Laconia Motorcycle Week has been winding down, with today being the last day of the 9-day long event. While the crowd hasn't been anywhere near the largest (police estimate about 270,000 visited this year), many of the vendors say people have been spending more than the previous 4 or 5 years. It helps that gas prices are well below where everyone thought they would be this time of year.
While the photo below is of a previous Bike Week, it gives you a small taste of what it's been like along Lakeside Avenue in Weirs Beach.
************Ann Althouse and a plethora of commenters are piling on Elizabeth Wurtzel's diatribe against 1% wives, blaming them for the so-called “war on women.”
It doesn't cross her mind even once that it is she (another 1%-er) that is waging a war on women, blasting them for being moms and not career-driven feminists with no children. (This 'problem' could solve itself as those like Wurtzel choose not to reproduce and they cause their own extinction.)
************Talk about another feminist FAIL, there's this from the House of Erasthenes.
One of the best comments: “Under Feminism, only women are allowed to be sexually attracted to anything, and only men are required to be sexually attractive.”
Yeah, that ought to work...
************Forbes lists the most business friendly places to start a business in the US. Not surprisingly the top four are Idaho, Texas, Oklahoma, and Utah. My home state of New Hampshire is one of the top eight. Also not surprising, the bottom four are California, Hawaii, Vermont, and Rhode Island.
I won't go into the reasons the bottom four are the least friendly as I think almost anyone that has been paying attention to the economy over the past couple of years or so understands the factors that make them that way.
(H/T Maggie's Farm)
************Skip Murphy points us to an ongoing e-mail conversation about pensions. One of the more poignant quotes: “Now I realize nurses aren’t treated the best, but I don’t understand why she feels we owe her a pension.”
The 'we' in this case is the American taxpayers.
As Skip says, “A socialist society is a selfish society – and as Government does more and more (notice that I did not say Society!), people expect and then demand more and more.”
As the saying goes, Read The Whole Thing.
************First Street Journal asks whether Barack Obama is North America's Hugo Chavez. I'd have to say, no, he isn't.
Instead he's a Hugo Chavez wannabe and he's finding out the American people have had just about enough of his Chavista ploys and working around or outright ignoring the Constitution and our laws, insulting our allies, sucking up to our enemies, and working hard to undermine democracies (Honduras, anyone?) everywhere.
I think he'll find out just how much the American people want him gone come November 6, 2012.
(H/T Pirate's Cove)
************Also by way of Cap'n Teach comes the news that the UK is ending subsidies for on-shore wind power by 2020.
At least the UK government is doing something right, realizing that the 'green energy' paradigm is expensive, counterproductive, expensive, not as green as everyone has been claiming, and expensive.
As the Cap'n also informs us, the UK is also looking into axing subsidies for solar farms, too.
It's looking more and more like 'green energy' is yet another bit of feel-good ideology that has little basis in fact, doesn't perform the way 'they' said it would, creates more problems than it solves, and makes the supply of power even less reliable, all while making it more expensive.
All of this is supposed to help us how?
************MIT's Technology Review raises the question whether the Anti-Virus Era is over?
The TR article uses the example of Flame, “the most complex mal-ware ever found”, showing that “conventional antivirus software is an outmoded way of protecting computers against mal-ware.”
I can see anti-virus software protecting computers form the more run-of-the-mill virus put together by less competent virus programmers and “script-kiddies”. But the more sophisticated mal-ware like Flame and StuxNet fly below the anti-virus radar and are usually found by accident. It might also have something to do with the possibility that both of these pieces of mal-ware were not created by some anonymous code hack in his mother's basement, but by high level government entities in order to make sure they have the high-ground if/when it comes to cyber-warfare.
I doubt we've heard the last of these sophisticated, stealthy programs.
************Are all of the new wireless devices, such as the iPhones, iPads, Android phones/devices, and so on, going to create a spectrum crunch? Unfortunately the answer is yes.
That means wireless carriers will be dialing back data-speeds and limiting the amount of data for each user. It also means they'll be eying spectrum that belongs to other services, such as public safety, commercial land-mobile radio, amateur radio, broadcasting, satellite, and even military spectrum. The problem is that there's very little spectrum left to be exploited. Spectrum is a finite resource. The only way the wireless carriers can get more spectrum is to kick other users off of theirs. I doubt very much that's going to happen as there are too many other legitimate users that cannot be relocated easily, if at all.
One of the few ways wireless carriers can expand their data carrying capabilities is create smaller cells which in turn allows them to re-use spectrum they already own. This means that an area that is covered at present by a single cell site maybe be broken up into 6 or more smaller sites, each covering a smaller area. This increases the data capacity by the factor of 6 or more. The only problem is that this is an expensive proposition for the carriers because they'll have to deploy a lot more equipment to do so. The return on investment may not be there, at least not yet.