4/24/2017

The Lame Stream Media Is Peddling Fake News...Again

It seems the 'fake news' onslaught from the Left has tried to collect another conservative scalp. However it seems that reality kicked in and showed the sexual harassment accusations against Sean Hannity made by the Lame Stream Media, a wholly owned subsidiary of the DNC, were totally bogus.

The plot is thickening in the Debbie Schlussel-Sean Hannity sexual harassment incident. Schlussel was interviewed this morning by Lawnewz and said she was never "sexually harassed" by Hannity, that he invited her back to his hotel, not his hotel room, but that she thought Hannity "weird" and "creepy."

--snip--

Note that anti-conservative media leaped to the conclusion that Schlussel was sexually harassed by Hannity despite her never using that term in her interview.

This incident says a lot more about those wanting to smear Hannity using spurious charges of sexual harassment than it says about Hannity himself.

I expect the 'usual suspects' will start bleating about how Debbie Schlussel is wrong and that she was sexually harassed, she just doesn't know it. This will be explained by them as one of two possible scenarios: 1) She was threatened by Hannity et al to keep her yap shut;or 2) she's too stupid or too 'indoctrinated' by conservative thought to understand that she's a helpless female victim of the patriarchy.

It still all boils down to this – The LSM ain't got nothing and the crap they make up is so blatantly false that only the other members of the LSM, their masters, and the Progressive lamebrains who slurp up every bit of dreck that flows from the LSM actually believe it.

Is it any wonder the LSM is losing readers and viewers at an increasing rate?

4/23/2017

Thoughts On A Sunday

The warm weather has returned after a few dreary and wet days here in central New Hampshire. I wish I could say I made the best of it, getting started on the spring yard cleanup. But as I am still recovering from a knee injury I suffered just prior to Christmas, my mobility is somewhat limited. That certainly has limited my ability to do much in the way of yard work, particularly considering the wet ground and steep slopes upon which The Manse sits.

Looks like I’m going to have to hire some folks to help me out this spring.

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One of the latest SJW ‘causes’ – cultural appropriation – has gone from the merely ridiculous to the extremely ridiculous. Case in point, the Tiny House movement has been labeled as ‘poverty appropriation’ by the SJW idiots.

Yes, believe it or not, some of them actually believe that bulls**t. They want to enforce cultural balkanization as if it were some kind of sacred duty, not understanding that that kind of stasis is death for any culture, or worse, not caring. If I had to guess, I’d say it’s both. Then again most of these willfully ignorant morons seem to wish for the destruction of everything that has allowed them to become willfully ignorant morons.

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As if the SJW madness hasn’t infected colleges here in the US, the same virus has also made its presence known in the UK. The latest example comes from Cambridge University where students who do not make eye contact could be considered racist.

So what they’re saying is that someone who is somewhere on the autism spectrum is automatically guilty of racism? That someone who is deeply introverted and uncomfortable among people in general can be considered racist? What about blind people?

I have only one comment: WTF?!!

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I was going to opine about the so-called March for Science, but David Starr beat me to it.

I wonder how many of the marchers had a minimum of scientific education. I strongly feel that all high school students should take chemistry, physics, and biology. In the 21th century when so many policies and issues have science (or claim to have science) at their base, all citizens ought to have some science at the high school level in order to understand the arguments pro and con.

Too many haven’t had that education. What’s worse is that some that have had it still don’t understand that in regards to climate science that climate models aren’t science, but they base all of their closely held beliefs on the defective climate models that do not track reality. What’s worse is that many of the same climate scientists they believe wholeheartedly have no problems with ‘adjusting’ climate data to meet AGW theory rather than adjusting the theory to match the climate data. On top of that they will not release the reason why past data needs to be adjusted or the algorithm they used to adjust the data. In other words, they told the faithful “Trust us!”

But science isn’t based on trust. It’s based upon verifiable data, experiments, and the ability for others to reproduce the results. But too much science is based more politics and funding and not actual science.

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Speaking of (climate) science, it turns out the global warming hiatus is real, at least according to science.

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I think this explains it a lot better than I can.


Heh.

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This is just so cool!


I. Want. One!

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And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where boating season fast approaches, the yard work needs doing, and where the Boston Bruins are out of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

4/16/2017

Thoughts On A Sunday

It is Easter Sunday and we've been blessed with excellent weather – warm, breezy, and sunshine with temps in the upper 70's.

One of the WP Sisters made the trip up from the People's Republic of Massachusetts for the weekend, allowing a mini-WP Clan gathering.

All in all, it's been a good weekend.

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Why doesn't this surprise me in the least?

Twenty-one arrested as hundreds of Trump supporters and counter protesters clash at Berkeley rally.

As one tweet stated, “The utterly predictable consequence of 'punching Nazis' as a strategy.” This is particularly true when the so-called “Nazi punchers” are themselves the Nazis despite their claim to be antifascist. It seems most of the antifascists seen running away in the distance are dressed in black.

Kind of ironic, eh?

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This is what can only be termed Nuclear Grade Stupidity.

Do these people actually believe that the very teachers, diplomats, 'culture', and aid they're demanding to be sent will turn ISIS or the Taliban away from their jihad? It is far more likely the teachers will be killed or sold into slavery, the diplomats will be gruesomely executed (seen on HD video), the 'culture' will be destroyed as “un-Islamic” and the aid will be taken by the jihadis and used for their purposes, that being buying more weapons.

The one thing that I find that is true about many of the people who believe that all that's needed to fix things in ISIS or Taliban held areas are those teachers, diplomats, 'culture' and aid have never been out of the US and their only exposure to other cultures is a visit to one of their local ethnic food restaurants.

Then again, for them it's all about feelz and not real life. They believe that everyone else, including those working so hard to destroy Western Civilization, believe exactly the same things they do. Too bad for the rest of us that it just isn't true.

(H/T Pirate's Cove)

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I've seen this before and I expect I'll see it again and again.

Some Times It's You.

I recall once having lunch with a female colleague who was complaining vociferously for the millionth time about not advancing fast enough in the corporation. Her boss was a misogynist, he was always giving the best projects to the men in her department – who only had engineering degrees while she held both an engineering degree and a law degree – both from the University of Michigan!

She had embraced the sisterhood of the traveling victims society long before it was so lucrative. Apparently mistaking me for a member of her sisterhood she seethed on and on about all the unfair exclusionary behavior her boss and male colleagues practiced, including never inviting her to join them for lunch. This was not a problem I encountered in my own department; not to boast, but I was a pretty popular lunch companion and in fact had passed up an invite to our Friday staff lunch in order to honor my prior commitment to Ms. Wendy of the Unwavering Whine.

So perhaps her complaint about never being invited to join the boys reminded me that I was missing the beer, pizza, jokes and good natured camaraderie that comprised Friday lunches back in the day. Whatever the reason, her complaint drew a rather direct (and, I acknowledge, probably insensitive) response: I heard myself saying to her  “maybe it’s nothing as pernicious as misogyny, maybe they just don’t like you.”  I can still see the stunned look on her face; she was a beautiful woman and quite smart but totally tone deaf to anyone other than herself. As a result she was quite lacking in the social graces.  I suspect nobody had ever spoken to her so bluntly in her entire life.

I once had a co-worker much like that. All she did was complain about how things were done differently where she had worked previously, that we were doing it (whatever 'it' was) wrong, that her co-workers weren't friendly, that it seemed all we wanted to do was work (while at work, something we were being paid handsomely to do), and that no one wanted to hang out with her outside of work. Like the aforementioned Ms. Wendy of the Unwavering Whine, the problem wasn't our employer or our co-workers, it was her. She was one of those toxic personalities that set everyone else on edge, was a total buzzkill in social settings, and did nothing but complain.

Her supervisor eventually suggested that she seek employment elsewhere and sent her on her way...just like voters this past November sent Hillary on her way.

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North Korea suffered a failed launch of yet another one of their ballistic missiles.

The Norks keep telling us they'll rain nuclear fire on the US, but one has to wonder it's merely bluster of if they believe their own propaganda.

Assuming they were able to launch a few nukes towards the US, do they think we wouldn't retaliate ten-fold or a hundred-fold and reduce North Korea to a radioactive wasteland? We wouldn't even need to launch missiles from the US mainland. A single US SSBN sitting somewhere in the Pacific Ocean could do that.

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It is said in the Bible that the 'Wages of Sin are Death.” But what are the wages of someone whose minimum wage job are raised to $15/hour? That's easy:

ZERO.

Not long after New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a law that will raise New York's minimum wage to $15 and 12 weeks of paid family leave, all of the food workers at one of the SUNY community colleges were laid off and were being replaced by food dispensing machines as a cost savings measure.

Call it yet another example of the Law of Unintended Consequences coming into play to bite the Progressive Policymakers in the ass.

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#Calexit is still a topic in California, with the Progressive coastal elite pushing for secession from the US.

However, before that happens it is likely some parts of the Golden State are working to separate themselves from California because they are sick and tired of being unrepresented in Sacramento and bullied by the ultra-Left Progressives in coastal California.

Efforts have been underway since before World War II to break off more than a dozen rural counties and combine them with a chunk of southern Oregon to form Jefferson, the nation’s 51st state.

The impetus is the same that drives backers of secession: the notion of a far-off government (in this case, Sacramento) ignoring local sentiments and a sense of being outnumbered and outvoted by a population whose social and political views are at odds with the prevailing (in this instance, conservative) culture. The proposed flag — a pair of Xs, or double cross — captures the animating sentiment.

“We really don’t have fair representation,” said Terry Rapoza, 67, a leader of the Jefferson movement in Shasta County...

He cited recent passage of a 10-year, $52-billion road repair and transportation bill; the hike in gas taxes, he said, will have much less impact in urban California than in rural stretches, where people might drive 20 miles to the grocery store, or a dozen miles to pick up their mail.

The rural areas of California, including much of the state's interior, have been marginalized by the Democrat's grip on the state Assembly and Senate for decades. Initiatives to remove dams in northern California may have sounded great to the tree-huggers in San Francisco, but caused havoc to people who needed the water in the northern parts of the state. Irrigation and process water was no longer available. Instead, it flowed into the ocean unimpeded. Taxes and fees that the coastal denizens shrug off cause hardship for those living inland. Laws that have little impact on urban areas generate even greater hardships in the rural area, but for no good reason other than some dimwitted Progressive thought it might make them feel better for having “Done Something” even though there was no 'something' that needed doing.

Better to break up California first, then let the coastal elite have their way with their remaining enclaves. Somehow I doubt we'll miss them all that much.

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the warm weather has returned, boats are being shorn of their winter covers, and where Monday has once again returned all too soon.

4/15/2017

The Dish Network - Hearst Feud Is a Symptom Of A Bigger Problem

While many of you out there may not know of the issue between satellite provider Dish Network and Hearst television, the ongoing feud between the two should stand as an object lesson.

Back on March 3rd, Hearst blacked out Dish from carrying its local TV stations in 26 cities across the US. That certainly affected us here in New Hampshire as well in Maine, Vermont, and Massachusetts as the local ABC affiliate stations, all owned by Hearst, were removed from Dish.

The issue?

Huge increases in the retransmission fee rate that Hearst demanded from Dish.

What are these retransmission fees? They are what local over-the-air TV broadcasters charge cable TV and satellite systems to carry their signals. These same signals are free to anyone who can use an outdoor antenna to receive them, signals transmitted over the publicly owned airwaves.

It used to be that TV broadcasters loved being retransmitted by cable TV and satellite providers because it increased the coverage area of their stations without them having to spend a penny to build additional transmitters. a definite upside for them. A second upside for them was that they could charge higher advertising fees because now they had more viewers and ad rates are usually dependent upon viewership. So, without having to invest their own money they saw their viewership greatly increased which in turn made them more money.

Then Congress effed it all up.

By allowing the over-the-air TV stations to start charging retransmission fees, they opened the door to abuse by those TV stations. This put them in the same boat as the 'regular' cable content providers like USA, A&E, ESPN, and so on.

Dish has not been the only system operator who has been negatively affected by these fees. DirecTV had the same problem with Hearst back in January, but DirecTV knuckled under to Hearst after a few days. The cable MSOs aren't immune to this as they have felt the wrath of other TV stations, cable content providers, and their parent corporations who have pulled the same stunt.

Whether the broadcasters and other content providers understand that they're reaching a tipping point where cable/satellite subscribers will finally have enough and 'cut the cord' is unknown. I do know that more people have been doing just that as they are tired of paying increasing amounts for TV, and particularly for channels they never watch. That streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, SlingTV, and a host of others are becoming more popular isn't surprising to anyone who has been paying attention.

I know the missus and I are pretty close to pulling the plug on our satellite subscription as we find ourselves using it less often than we have, yet paying more for it every year. We use Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu for more of our TV viewing and for a fraction of the cost of our satellite bill.

I figure we'll reach our tipping point soon.

4/14/2017

White People are EVIL! Yeah. Right.

It seems the “white people are evil” meme on college campuses has reached the point of being ridiculous.

Every race or ethnic group has, at one point or another in their history, committed the very acts that whites are being accused of having committed ages ago. In fact, some races/groups commit many of those same evil acts today, yet do not get condemned for them.

Slavery still exists and is practiced in Africa and Asia. (Do you think it isn't? Then how do you explain the present day sale of black slaves in Libya?)

Genocide is still committed in Africa and Asia.

Writes Fred Reed:

If you are a white student in college, you doubtless hear daily that white people are evil, the principal cause of everything wrong with the world. Whiteness is bad, white people are bad. We are to blame for everything.

If you believe this, you are being gamed. What you are being told is nonsense. If you have the intelligence and self-respect to think for yourself, ask:

“What have other races and ethnic groups accomplished in the world compared to what we white people have?”

This question will be shocking to you because you have been carefully programmed not to think such things. But ask. I think you will find that the groups who complain the most have accomplished the least.

Sounds racist as hell, doesn't it? But is it? Is it a response to the institutional racism being force fed to college kids all across this nation, where they are being taught to hate white people even if they themselves are white? The latest PC bulls**t to come out of the colleges and related SJW groups is the notion of “white privilege”. What the hell is that? Hint – it's just another way of being racist against white people without worrying about being called a racist. In other words, it's hypocritical.

If think that white people are evil and have stolen everything that they have from all of the other races groups, then how do you explain this:

Euclidean geometry. Parabolic geometry. Hyperbolic geometry. Projective geometry. Differential geometry. Calculus: Limits, continuity, differentiation, integration. Physical chemistry. Organic chemistry. Biochemistry. Classical mechanics. The indeterminacy principle. The wave equation. The Parthenon. The Anabasis. Air conditioning. Number theory. Romanesque architecture. Gothic architecture. Information theory. Entropy. Enthalpy. Every symphony ever written. Pierre Auguste Renoir. The twelve-tone scale. The mathematics behind it, twelfth root of two and all that. S-p hybrid bonding orbitals. The Bohr-Sommerfeld atom. The purine-pyrimidine structure of the DNA ladder. Single-sideband radio. All other radio. Dentistry. The internal-combustion engine. Turbojets. Turbofans. Doppler beam-sharpening. Penicillin. Airplanes. Surgery. The mammogram. The Pill. The condom. Polio vaccine. The integrated circuit. The computer. Football. Computational fluid dynamics. Tensors. The Constitution. Euripides, Sophocles, Aristophanes, Aeschylus, Homer, Hesiod. Glass. Rubber. Nylon. Skyscrapers. The piano. The harpsichord. Elvis. Acetylcholinesterase inhibitors. (OK, that’s nerve gas, and maybe we didn’t really need it.) Silicone. The automobile. Really weird stuff, like clathrates, Buckyballs, and rotaxanes. The Bible. Bug spray. Diffie-Hellman, public-key cryptography, and RSA. Et cetera at great length.

What do all of these things have in common? Do I really need to tell you?

4/09/2017

Thoughts On A Sunday

Warm spring weather has returned, with temps in the 60's today and expected for tomorrow, and temps in the 70's expected for Tuesday and Wednesday. That has meant I've let the Official Weekend Pundit Woodstove go out for now as it would easily reach the 80's inside The Manse should I keep it gong, even at its lowest burn rate.

None of this has prodded me to put up the Official Weekend Pundit Snowblower yet as I know Mother Nature can be a bitch and throw yet another snowstorm our way. I think I'll wait until the end of this month before I do so. However I did make arrangements for a slip for the Official Weekend Pundit Lake Winnipesaukee Runabout (aka The Boat). I expect to get it into the water by mid-May at the latest.

One other milestone this weekend – We fired up the Official Weekend Pundit Grill for the first time since late fall, grilling some nice marinate sirloin tips!

And how was your weekend?

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If the Congressional Democrats didn't have double standards, they'd have no standards at all.

First, they bitch at Donald Trump because he didn't consult with them first before taking out some of Syria's chemical weapon delivery systems. Not that he needed to. We certainly saw enough of that with The Won, with him notifying them well after the fact.

Second, they bitch at Mitch McConnell because he used the “Reid Option”, aka 'the nuclear option', to get around a Democrat filibuster in the Senate over Neil Gorsuch's confirmation. They seemed to be fine with it when it wasn't aimed at them, but now that the table has turned they're appalled and apoplectic.

As they're learning, “Elections have consequences” means that it cuts both ways.

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I think this charts says it all. No further explanation is needed or required.

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I find it interesting that many anti-Trump folks point to his failures to keep his campaign promises. I also find it interesting that these same folks have totally ignored those he's already kept and those he's still working to complete.

Yeah, the repeal of ObamaCare didn't come off as everyone who was against it had hoped. That doesn't mean the effort is dead, the anti-Trumpers and ObamaCare panderers beliefs to the contrary.

There are other things in the works, such as severely paring back the unauthorized and, in some case, illegal regulations and 'administrative' laws that have been an increasingly heavy burden on businesses, large and small. These regulations and laws protect no one (except the rent-seekers), cost businesses billions to implement, assuming they can even do so.

The unelected bureaucrats have somehow come to believe that they decide what the laws are or should be, not Congress, not the courts (not even the Supreme Court), and not the President. They seem to have forgotten that they work for the President, are bound by the laws passed by Congress, and cannot ignore court rulings that seek to limit their overreach.

That Trump has made moves to eliminate these rules and administrative laws, even if it means firing slews of self-important bureaucrats and eliminating departments and agencies that serve no useful purpose other than wasting billions of taxpayer dollars and hampering the lives of the American people with draconian rules and regulations, should surprise no one who has been paying attention. It is a long overdue action that needs doing, and quickly.

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I don't know how I missed this, but it seems there may be an issue with voter fraud here in New Hampshire that might affect the outcome of November's election, specifically for the office of US Senator.

NH1 was told about 6,000 who registered to vote and voted same-day using out of state driver’s licenses. Then, they claim that is legal under state law. I would like to know which state law lets a non-resident vote in NH because I have yet to find one. You can use an out of state driver’s license in the extremely rare case you are in transition from one state to another – but temporary non-citizens must still follow their home state’s laws. There are 49 other states with various laws regarding their citizens voting in another state. It is illegal in all the states I have checked, and in a Federal Election, it is illegal and unconstitutional as well.

Considering the Senate race between then-GOP incumbent Kelly Ayotte and former NH Governor, Democrat Maggie Hassan was decide by less the 500 votes, with many of those 6000 'new' out-of-state voters located in college towns, one has to wonder if the race would have gone in Ayotte's favor if it weren't for those college voters. I also have to wonder how many, if any of those out-of-state college students also voted in their home states via absentee ballot?

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Businesses are finding out the hard way that buckling to the demands of the perpetually offended SJWs almost always backfires, The latest two cases – Target and Starbucks.

Starbucks shot itself in the foot when it stated it set aside 10,000 jobs exclusively for refugees. The result – its stock price plummeted and it saw a falloff in sales. What about jobs for Americans? These jobs aren't the so-called 'jobs Americans don't want to do'.

Target also ran afoul of its customer base, costing it a fortune in lost sales. The trigger? The retailer stated in blog post about its policy change in regards to allowing bathroom access for its transgendered customers and employees, capitulating to SJW hysteria.

What does any of this mean? It's simple really – the SJWs and their 'supporters' are a very small minority and being cowed by their demands has a price, that being losing customers. They should learn the lesson that it is their customers who are important to their survival, not self-important crybullies who are offended by everything.

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the warm weather has returned, the snows are rapidly melting away, and we're counting the days until we can remove the shrink wrap from out boats.

4/02/2017

Thoughts On A Sunday

While we didn't quite as much snow as some had predicted, the 8 inches that did fall was a pain to move. It was a very heavy snow compared to that seen over a week ago, making it a longer task to clean off the driveway. What usually takes a little over an hour took over two and there were still a few things left undone. (I ran out of gas. No, not the snowblower, but me.)

Ice melt and sand didn't get laid down until this morning.

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This guy should just vomit and get it over with. Then when he explains why he vomited he should be beaten like the asshole he is. And then beaten again because he's such an asshole.

And to think he's teaching your kids at Drexel University. If your kids are going there you should seriously consider either having them transfer elsewhere, demand some of the tuition money you paid be refunded, or work to have this asshole fired.

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I like Rob Schneider's take on the Democrats' problem and who is to blame.

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Here's more on the SJW-motivated non-kerfuffle about why Mike Pence and other men won't have dinner alone with a woman who is not his wife or significant other.

From one comment to the Atlantic article linked in the above:
1. Greatly expand definition of sexual harassment.
2. Make any accusation of sexual harassment career-ending.
3. Proclaim that women should always be believed when they accuse a man.
4. Complain that men won’t have 1-on-1 meetings with women.

The so-called gender feminists have created the conditions listed above and they wonder why men won't put themselves into a position that leaves them vulnerable to extortion, or worse, loss of their careers. The gender feminists call it sexism. Men call it prudent means to survive a hostile business environment.

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Ed Driscoll drills down into the debacle that was 60 Minutes Scott Pelley's interview with with Mike Cernovich. To say that Pelley had his head handed to him by Cernovich would be an understatement.

Scott Pelley: You wrote in August a story about Hillary Clinton’s medical condition the headlines said, “Hillary Clinton has Parkinson’s disease. Position confirms.” That’s quite a headline.

Mike Cernovich: Yeah, Dr. Ted Noel had se-sent a story to me anonymously, that I checked out, analyzing her medical condition. And –

Scott Pelley: It isn’t true.

Mike Cernovich: How do you know?

Scott Pelley: Well, she doesn’t seem to have any signs of Parkinson’s disease.

Mike Cernovich: She had a seizure and froze up walking into her motorcade that day caught by a citizen journalist.

Scott Pelley: Did you, well, she had pneumonia. I mean –

Mike Cernovich: How do you know?

Scott Pelley: Well, because that’s what was reported.

Mike Cernovich: By whom? Who told you that?

Scott Pelley: Well, the campaign told us that.

Mike Cernovich: Why would you trust a campaign?

Indeed. Why would any journalist trust the campaign of anyone running for office? The answer to that is simple – because those same journalists were campaign supporters with bylines. At that point they were no longer journalists but apparatchiks. What makes this even worse is that the so-called journalists actually believe that that's what they are supposed to do.

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Take the Snowflake Test.

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First, Venezuela fell under the sway of socialism and it went from being the richest nation is South America to the poorest. Another country, Brazil, also fell under the sway of socialism and also saw its fortunes decline and almost collapse. But at least Brazilians realized what was going on and worked to change it.

Here's what happened:


Maybe it's time for both the Venezuelans and our country's millenials to wake up to the fact that socialism doesn't friggin' work, ever.

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One has to wonder whether there will be a Second Civil War in the US, seeing as Democrats is some states believe that foreign laws should somehow hold sway here in the US over our own laws.

I'm sorry, but if people want to be judged based upon the laws from the country or culture they came from, the perhaps they should return to those places so they can be granted their wish.

If you break US laws while here in the US then you should be judged based upon US laws. That is part and parcel of any legal system. If you let the laws of another nation or culture to override US law, then US law becomes meaningless and the legal system breaks down. That can lead to war, particularly if those who believe in law and order and the sanctity of US law and the US Constitution decide they've had enough and decide to do something about it.

That will get ugly real quick and those who believe foreign laws should reign supreme will find themselves on the losing side and, quite possibly, dangling from the end of a rope for treason.

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the snow that fell on Saturday is melting away rapidly, the local ski area is closing for the season, and where thoughts of boating season have returned.

4/01/2017

A Purely Defensive (And Understandable) Move

I find it interesting, but unsurprising, that the Left has lost its friggin' mind over the revelation that Mike Pence prefers not to dine alone with women who are not his wife.

Reading some of the tweets and comments about his choice, one has to wonder if those who lambaste him and call him sexist truly understand the reason why he does this. I certain do. Just about any man alive today understands.

While Pence has both religious and moral reasons for doing so, many other men understand the risk entailed by doing so. Considering the hostile environment created by the various feminist groups, SJW's, and the perpetually offended Left, it's no wonder no sane man would want to put himself into a position that has a high risk of destroying his reputation, or worse, his career. Call it a necessary defensive move in a situation created by the very same people who are now slamming Pence for publicly stating his preferences and the reason behind them.

These morons need to get a clue.

3/31/2017

Here We Go Again...Again

Yet another winter storm is bearing down on New England, with snowfall here in central New Hampshire expected to be between 10 and 12 inches. While the TV media isn’t pushing the whole Storm O’ Doom scenario. Whether it is because even they are tired of the overblown doomsday scenario, knowing no one will buy it. There isn’t that sense of urgency we usually see. Folks aren’t scrambling about, stocking up on bread, milk, ice melt, snow shovels, or any of the other usual storm fare.

Despite the size of the storm, expected snowfall totals, and high possibilities of the power outages, it seems everyone is acting resigned to the fact. Call it storm fatigue. Everyone is tired of winter weather. We’ve had more than a few weeks of warm spring-like weather, only to be hauled back into winter with cold temperatures and heavy snowfalls.

Once again I will break out the Official Weekend Pundit Snowblower, a snowshovel and spade, as well as another 50 pound bag of ice melt and a hundredweight of sand. Once again I will spend a couple of hours clearing away the snow and making our driveway passable again.

I would like to think this will be the last big storm to close out winter weather…but I’m not holding my breath because I know Mother Nature is a bitch.

3/26/2017

Thoughts On A Sunday

We survived yet another fading gasp of Old Man Winter, receiving 6 inches of snow on Friday. Much of that snow is already gone. With temps predicted to be in the 50's most of the week I expect we'll see quite a bit more of the snow remaining from the Nor'easter we had over a week ago to diminish as well.

One advantage of the extended warmer temps is less reliance on the Official Weekend Pundit Woodstove to keep The Manse toasty warm. Our most recent propane delivery this past Thursday was only 104 gallons. That covered over 9 week's worth of propane use for heating, hot water, and the clothes dryer, even through some bitterly cold temperatures. At the end of the heating season I expect we'll still have close to one cord of wood left.

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With the failure of the Ryan Bill to repeal Obamacare, it appears that which is old is new again. In this case a replica of a repeal bill that passed in 2015 and was vetoed by President Obama sits in committee and may be fast-tracked for a floor vote.

There was heavy support for the 2015 bill, but unfortunately not enough votes to override Obama's veto.

Maybe the third time for repeal will be the charm.

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This bears repeating again and again: Venezuela used to be the richest nations in South America. Now it is the poorest. What's worse is that it was done to the Venezuelan people on purpose.

See what happens when those in power ignore both history and Ayn Rand's warnings?

What's making it even worse is that they government has stepped up punishing the very few who are still capable of feeding the hungry citizens.

That will turn out well.

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What happens when a bunch of anti-Trump protesters make the mistake of pepper spraying some Trump supporters at a pro-Trump rally?

They get their asses kicked, and rightfully so.

These wannabe fascists are used to facing people who won't fight back, so they're surprised when their intended victims “punch back twice as hard.”

Like Glenn Reynolds, I expect to see less of these types of tactics if the Progressive protesters consistently get their heads handed to them.

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“If there is no God, then murder isn't wrong.”

Some of the more lunatic Progressives might actually believe that...until someone decides to test their belief by trying to murder them.

Here's Dennis Prager's take on the issue:


What “sounds good on paper” rarely works that way in real life. It's time the Progressives/Socialists/Communists/Anarchists come to realize that as there are more than a few examples in history. Then again, they tend to ignore history, particularly history that refuses to back up their ideology.

(H/T GraniteGrok)

*****************


As if no one saw this one coming.

A new Rasmussen poll shows that only 35 percent of those likely US voters polled favor living in a so-called “sanctuary city”.

Apparently the other 65% understand the major downsides to living in such cities and want nothing to do with it.

*****************


And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where warmer weather is returning, dreams of boating have returned, and where the woodpile is shrinking at a much slower pace.

3/25/2017

Friends In Safe Spaces

It seems it's another day for a timely video, in this case by way of GraniteGrok.

All I can say is that it is an appropriate commentary on the state of our colleges and universities and the precious fragile snowflakes who infest them.


Yup, I'd say they nailed it.

3/23/2017

Domino's Tribute Ad

I've seen this ad a couple of times over the past two days and I had to post it.

While I am not a Domino's customer (they're too far way for delivery), nor am I promoting their products, I felt it was necessary to post this video as it does pay tribute to one of my favorite John Hughes movies*. It even includes one of the original cast members from that movie.


*For those of you unfamiliar with Hughes' litany of successful movies, particularly those of you in your teens, the movie is Ferris Bueller's Day Off. If you haven't ever seen it, you should.

3/19/2017

Thoughts On A Sunday

Much of the Lakes Region of New Hampshire is still recovering from last Tuesday's Nor'easter, with some folks not having seen their power restored until today.

At least the roads are all free and clear of any residual ice and snow. Even the very steep driveway here at The Manse was passable the day after the storm passed, though it took a bit of effort on my part to make sure that was so. Moving 19+ inches of snow with a balky snowblower was an adventure in and of itself. Without the help of my neighbor, Oracle Al, it would have been much more difficult. (I refer to him as Oracle Al because he works for Oracle. 'Al' is not his real name, but I had to call him something!)

Warm spring-like weather will be here for Monday and Tuesday, helping even more of the snow to melt away. It is appropriate as the first day of spring is Monday!

*****************


I'm not sure I like this modern version of the Good Samaritan. It's nothing more than yet another version of virtue signaling, something that does no one any good.

*****************


The News Junkie asks “Why does climate alarmism look like a scam?”

Because it is!

It's a multi-billion dollar scam being perpetrated by people who really don't give a s**t about the climate or the people they're scamming. They just want the money.

If they say it isn't about the money, it's about the money.

*****************


Who says there's no such thing as karma?

Rachel Maddow thought she had the dirt on President Trump when she got a copy of his 1995 tax returns. She played it up on MSLSD as if she would be revealing some dirty laundry and have the President by the short and curlies.

It turns out there was no 'there' there. His return was pretty straightforward and plain vanilla.

After this fiasco, Maddow's ratings have plummeted. (Not that they were all that good to begin with. Now they're even worse.) She's also a laughing stock.

It couldn't happen to a 'nicer' Progressive apologist/propagandist.

*****************


When virtue signaling turns to rape.

I'm sure some of those same folks will be trying to explain to the 14-year old victim that she shouldn't be upset by being raped by two illegal immigrants in her school.

These 'More Virtuous Than Thou' assholes need to get a clue, but I'm not holding my breath that will.

*****************


And anti-capitalist leader demands “unapologetically” that white men and women pay her “because they consume intellectual, emotional & creative labor 24/7 w/o my consent.”

If she wants me to pay her, particularly for things that I have created. I have one question for her - “Do you want that payment to be in .308 or .40 caliber?”

This deluded soul needs some mental help. I suggest involuntary commitment until she's rational again.

*****************


Joel Kotkin has the right of it as Hollywood becomes less important and less influential due to it's self-inflicted wounds.

No industry is more identified with Southern California than entertainment. Yet, in the past, the industry’s appeal has lain in identifying with the always-changing values and mythos of American society. But, today, that connection is being undermined, not just by technology, but also by a seemingly self-conscious decision to sever the industry’s links with roughly half of the population.

As Glenn Reynolds comments, “Also, their movies mostly stink.”

Yes. Yes they do. It's one reason I have only been to a movie theater once in the past two years.

*****************


David Starr tears into Obama's 54.5 MPG mandate, telling us we really wouldn't want to drive a car that gets that kind of fuel economy,particularly if it can't carry the spouse, kids, and all the luggage on a road trip. As he writes, “Heck you cannot get 54.5 MPG out of motorcycle, let alone any sort of decent car.”

Indeed.

*****************


And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the local ski resorts and snowmobile trails have received a boon from Mother Nature, preparations for boating season have ceased (for now), and where the woodpile is shrinking a somewhat slower pace.

3/18/2017

Venezuela Closer To The Brink

It is fascinating watching as Venezuela collapses, seeing it as yet another real life example of what Ayn Rand warned us about 60 years ago. It went from being one of the wealthiest nations in South America to the poorest. It wasn't happenstance or natural disaster which brought about this transformation from wealth to poverty. It was caused by deliberate actions taken by Venezuela's socialist government.

Anyone even slightly cognizant of Socialism's major fault, that being that eventually the run out of other people's money and everything then falls apart, could see that Hugo Chavez and his minions chose to ignore the lessons history has taught about that gawd-awful ideology. It's like Chavez, Maduro, and the other Chavistas used Atlas Shrugged as a how-to manual and not a warning.

Their latest dive into Ayn Rand's dystopian tome: Arresting bakers because they can't make enough bread.

Facing a bread shortage that is spawning massive lines and souring the national mood, the Venezuelan government is responding this week by detaining bakers and seizing establishments.

In a press release, the National Superintendent for the Defense of Socioeconomic Rights said it had charged four people and temporarily seized two bakeries as the socialist administration accused bakers of being part of a broad “economic war” aimed at destabilizing the country.

Juan Crespo, the president of the Industrial Flour Union called Sintra-Harina, which represents 9,000 bakeries nationwide, said the government’s heavy hand isn’t going to solve the problem.

“The government isn’t importing enough wheat,” he said. “If you don’t have wheat, you don’t have flour, and if you don’t have flour, you don’t have bread.”

He said the country needs four, 30-ton boats of wheat every month to cover basic demand.

So it isn't that there isn't enough wheat, and hence flour to bake bread. It's that the greedy bakers are 'destabilizing the country'. To me it appears the Venezuelan government has no understanding of cause and effect, meaning that they either don't know or don't care that no amount of coercion can force bakers to make enough bread if there are no ingredients available.

We've seen that before when the Venezuelan government chastised, and in some cases, arrested factory owners and managers because their factories weren't producing any goods. That there were no raw materials available and/or the electrical supply was spotty or non-existent didn't make any difference. It was the fault of the 'greedy factory owners destabilizing the country' that was causing the problem. Funny that the arrests did not motivate other factory owners to get their factories operating again seeing that they were in exactly the same situation as those who were detained – no materials and no power.

That the Chavistas were the ones who created this crisis to begin with is something they can never admit. It has to be the fault of someone else. Therefore there will be no changes until a revolution takes place that removes the Chavistas from power.

3/14/2017

Yet Another Storm O' Doom

The snow started falling right around 7 this morning just as the WP Mom and I were making our way to our local polling place to participate in our town elections and town/school warrant articles voting. In an amazingly short period of time the road conditions deteriorated.

Less than a mile from The Manse we came across a bad accident, one that turned out to be fatal. That was after all of 15 minutes of snowfall.

Now one might ask why we were braving the increasingly bad conditions on such a day. As I mentioned above, it was our Town Meeting day which included electing town and school officials as well as voting on various warrant articles that covered the gamut of town/school spending, changes to zoning ordinances how certain default budgets would be prepared. While Town Meeting has no implications at state or federal level, meaning a delay in holding the meeting would have no impact at the state or federal level, New Hampshire state law doesn't allow 'snow day' adjustments during elections. But a contradictory state law gives the town/school moderator the power to reschedule town/school meetings. Which one holds sway?

Of course the governor and the Secretary of State say the first has precedence. But a number of towns around the state ignored that 'advice' and rescheduled their town meetings/elections until Thursday.

You might ask why we here in the Granite State aren't prepared for snow storms like the one we are experiencing at the moment? We are. But with the rapid snowfall rate and even more rapidly deteriorating road conditions one should ask why we would put our fellow townsfolk at such a risk for something that could be postponed for a day or two. When the snowfall rates are high enough the plow crews can't keep up and the road become slick, and in some cases, dangerous to travel. Considering the Weather GuysTM have forecast up to 2 feet of snow in our area with high winds (up to 50MPH gusts) to start a little later in the day, traveling will become even more dangerous than it has already been. This morning's traffic fatality and other accidents is proof of that.

As an aside, the local TV news operations haven't been going over the top with their all too common “Storm O' Doom” coverage. In fact, most have been rather low key. So far I haven't seen a single on-the-scene reporter reach down to pick up a handful of snow to show that it is indeed snowing and accumulating. They and the talking heads at the studio have merely reminded folks to stay off the roads if they don't need to be out, and if they do, to exercise caution and common sense, and to take their time getting to their destination.

Frankly, that's quite refreshing.

3/12/2017

Thoughts on A Sunday

It's been a cold and windy weekend here in central New Hampshire, with winter letting us know it isn't done with us yet. Large snowstorm is headed our way and is supposed to drop between 12 and 18 of snow starting some time Tuesday morning.

One of the issues with the high winds has been downed tree limbs and power outages. Power was out here at The Manse this past Thursday for a couple of hours, caused by the winds dropping one of those aforementioned tree limbs onto power lines nearby.

Another issue has been spotty Internet access. It started a few weeks ago and it wasn't until recently I was able to figure out that we kept losing connection to the 'Net every time it was windy out. That tells me there's some kind of problem outside The Manse, likely a loose or bad connector either on the side of The Manse our out at the pole.

I have had this problem once before when I resided at the Official Weekend Pundit Lakeside Manse some years ago. It took a while for the local cable company to figure out it was a bad connector on a splitter box out on the street. The cable guy is supposed to be here first thing Tuesday morning (just ahead of the storm) to fix the problem...I hope. Until then posting will be problematic. (I couldn't post anything last night because I had little or no connectivity most of the day.)

*****************


I found it interesting that The New Republic has propose a so-called Bluexit to separate the Blue States from the Red States. It reads a little tongue-in-cheek, but I do have one complaint about the premise, that being that they included New Hampshire as a Blue State. We are not.

While our congressional delegation is all Democrat, something that happens now and then in our contrarian state, our state legislature, executive counsel, and governor are Republican. Our legislature recently passed Constitutional Carry and our governor happily signed it. The governor is working hard to trim back if not eliminate some of our corporate taxes as well as do away with our Interest and Dividend taxes. (New Hampshire has no income tax on wages but it does tax the interest and dividends paid out to residents. If it goes away then no income by an individual would taxed by the state. So far there's heavy support for the measure.)

While our previous governor, Maggie Hassan - now one of our two US senators - tried hard to make New Hampshire a carbon copy of the People's Republic of Massachusetts, the legislature dismantled many of her proposals and they never saw the light of day. She did manage, however, to create a huge budget deficit at one point, cooking the numbers on projected revenues including some from casino licensing. One problem – casino gambling is not legal in New Hampshire and I hope it never will be.

How does any of that make New Hampshire a Blue State? It must be wishful thinking on the part of The New Republic.

*****************


Frankly, I'm expecting a civil war in California.

How could it not happen when California's Democrats in the Golden State have been waging war on the poor and middle class for years?

California Democrats frequently bloviate about helping the poor and downtrodden, yet two recent examples — a campaign by the nation’s second-largest public-school district to crush charter alternatives and new state legislation that will boost the cost of housing development — demonstrate how liberal policies can be a direct assault on the financial prospects of the state’s lowest-income residents.

Some of the sore losers on the Left Coast talk about #Calexit, but I think they'll find that most of the counties and communities away from the coast will fight that tooth and nail, knowing that if #Calexit became a reality most of them would be relegated to the status of serfs (as if they aren't already). It would be The Hunger Games brought to reality.

*****************


So it's come to this.

The USDA threatens to shut down a farm for opposing gay marriage.

How is it the USDA has any say in the matter? How is it it can violate the First Amendment rights of the farm owner with impunity?

Oh, that's right. I forgot. The USDA isn't bound by the law because it believes in administrative law rather than constitutional law. It makes up its own rules and laws as it sees fit.

I see a class action suit in the future. Or may President Trump can issue an Executive Order overturning the USDA's stand and fire the bureaucrats behind this debacle.

*****************


Talk about irony!

Now that the shoe is on the other foot, Nancy Pelosi wants to know what's in a bill before it's passed.

Where was that concern when she was Speaker of the House and pushed that gawdawful ObamaCare bill? As we know, it was nowhere.

*****************


I covered the subject of China'[s so-called 'Ghost Cities' in the past. One would think that by know there would be hundreds of thousands, if not millions of people now living in them, but you'd be wrong.

When I covered this issue, there were maybe a dozen such ghost cities. Now there are at least 50.

It looks like the trend is accelerating with even more cities planned to be built.

*****************


Want to see the negative effects of gender feminism? Then just look here at the Before and After photos of these poor women who don't realize they've been lied to.

While some out there may say am merely projecting my patriarchal definition of beauty on these womyn, I can say that I am not. I just don't like seeing people purposely mutilating themselves in order to meet someone else's definition of what's acceptable. (See, it works both ways. My definition of what is acceptable versus someone else's definition. Which one is right? I don't really care, but at least I don't expect women to mutilate themselves in order to 'fit it' unlike those who want women to meet the gender feminist ideal.)

*****************


Listening to the bleating from the LSM-DNC, one would think that a new president has never fired US Attorneys appointed by their predecessor.

Bill Clinton fired every sitting US Attorney, some 90+ of them, after he took office and there wasn't a peep out of the media other than reporting that it took place. But Trump asks for the resignation of 46 of them and it's 'unprecedented' or 'purely political' or 'illegal', particularly after one of them balks and Trump fires him.

The LSM ignores the fact that they serve at the pleasure of the President, period. Appointments to these positions are political and always have been. But the fact that a bunch of very liberal US Attorneys have been told their services are no longer required is now seen as wrong. To quote The Won, “Elections have consequences.”

Indeed they do.

*****************


I liked the title of this op-ed piece in the NYT Sunday magazine: The Dangerous Safety of College Campuses.

The moral of the recent melee at Middlebury College, where students shouted down and chased away a controversial social scientist, isn’t just about free speech, though that’s the rubric under which the ugly incident has been tucked. It’s about emotional coddling. It’s about intellectual impoverishment.

Somewhere along the way, those young men and women — our future leaders, perhaps — got the idea that they should be able to purge their world of perspectives offensive to them. They came to believe that it’s morally dignified and politically constructive to scream rather than to reason, to hurl slurs in place of arguments.

They have been done a terrible disservice. All of us have, and we need to reacquaint ourselves with what education really means and what colleges do and don’t owe their charges.

Physical safety? Absolutely. A smooth, validating passage across the ocean of ideas? No. If anything, colleges owe students turbulence, because it’s from a contest of perspectives and an assault on presumptions that truth emerges — and, with it, true confidence.
Indeed. Coddling these fragile snowflakes helps no one, leaves them crippled and unable to deal with real life, and pushes them down a destructive path that will lead to something far worse than what they've been 'protesting' against.

*****************


And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where winter weather is returning with a vengeance, dreams of spring have retreated, and where we're keeping the woodstove well stoked.

3/05/2017

Thoughts On A Sunday

We've dived back into winter temperatures with a 60ºF change in temperatures between Thursday and yesterday. We went from 64ºF to 4ºF along with plenty of high wind to make the wind chill somewhere around -20ºF.

I don't mind the cold all that much, but this swing from cold to warm to cold and back again is getting pretty old.

*****************


This follows some of what I posted yesterday about too many people not knowing how stuff works.

In this case it appears there are people who actually take pride in not knowing how to do things those of us of the older generations can do without even thinking. Being intentionally ignorant about such things merely tells us you're too frickin' immature and are incapable of dealing with life as it is.

It's time to grow up, snowflakes!

*****************


You know the oh-so-tolerant campus Progressives are showing their true colors – pure fascism – when they become violent and start sending non-progressive college professors and average American Trump supporters to hospitals after having beaten them all in the name of anti-fascism.

*****************


Are America's self-anointed elite really elite?

No, not by a long shot. They aren't even close. What they are are run-of-the-mill snobs holding a belief that they are somehow better than those outside their circle...or perhaps I should call it what it is, a bubble.

The other question is are they ready for the rude awakening they're about to receive?

Again, the answer is no.

*****************


Here's your Whining Whiner of the Day.

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Talk about the Law of Unintended Consequences coming to bite you in the ass, there's this little tidbit from the Standing Rock Sioux reservation in North Dakota.

Tribal leaders say a slowing economy and a snowy winter contributed to losses at the Prairie Knights Casino. Also, the closure of the casino’s main access road due to the oil pipeline protest hurt the facility’s bottom line.

“It’s like it’s fallen off a cliff,” said tribal financial officer Jerome Long Bottom. “When the bridge was shut off, the numbers just plummeted.”

Could it be that the protesters who were there to protest against the Dakota Access Pipeline might have had something to do with it. Could all of the trash, garbage, and human waste they left behind for someone else to clean up have caused the access road to the casino to be closed?

I am sure the Standing Rock Sioux are just overjoyed at the $6 million loss in revenue for their tribe caused by the oh-so-concerned guilty white liberals.

*****************


Due to some continuing connectivity issues I have cut this week's edition of TOAS short. It seems that any time the wind blows I lose my connection to the net. I have already contacted my provider, one of the local cable MSOs, and they have confirmed there is indeed a problem as they could not maintain contact with my cable modem. So with that, that is the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the warm weather has fled...until Wednesday, the local townsfolk are looking close at the town warrants, and where my woodpile has resumed shrinking.

3/04/2017

Does The Fact That Clarke's Law Is Becoming A Reality Signal The Downfall Of Civilization?

A long time ago, science fiction author Arthur C. Clarke posited that “any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” As Richard Fernandez has posted, we are seeing the return of magic, and it's not good.

The 21st century is turning out to be mix of incompetence and brilliance, high technology and primitivism, fastidiousness and brutality all coexisting side by side.

--snip--

Too many everyday things are already indistinguishable from magic to the average man.  Four centuries ago everyone knew how everything in their village worked.  Even a hundred years ago an intelligent person could figure out how anything he would likely encounter, even the steam locomotive.  But today people are surrounded by things about whose workings they haven't a clue.  Medical devices, synthetic pharmaceuticals, designer pathogens.  The proportion of those who can explain the world is gradually shrinking.

This is something I have noticed over the years.

Just within my lifetime I have seen the increase in the level of ignorance about how things work. I'm not talking about just the high tech gizmos that have become ubiquitous, but items and technologies that have been around for generations. I'm talking about things like internal combustion engines, power generation (and the distribution grids that go with it), aircraft, radio and TV, telephones (the plain old telephone systems that require wires), telegraphs, film cameras, light bulbs, steam engines, looms, and a whole host of other tech that has been around for a century or more and are still in use today. When we get into the 21st century tech that we use every day the level of ignorance about how it all works is staggering and getting worse. As I have heard more than one colleague opine over the years, “People think all of this neat wiz bang stuff works by FM – F***kin' Magic.” It never ceases to surprise me how many people I know outside of the geek network haven't a clue how things work. They just know that it does neat stuff.

Many of these folks think that electricity comes from a wall outlet, food comes from a supermarket, gasoline comes from a gas station, and the Internet comes from thin air. They haven't a clue about all of the 'hidden' things that make all of those things possible or how any of it works.

As Richard has written, the number of people who understand it all and can explain it is shrinking. At some point those of us who do understand it, know how it works, know how to fix it, and know how to make new things will be looked upon with awe, and most probably, fear. We will have become the new wizards, or better yet, Techno-Mages, to borrow a term from one of my favorite sci-fi TV series, Babylon 5.

As I mentioned before, this is not a good thing. On the other hand, this could lead to something created from the mind of Ayn Rand – Galt's Gulch. Those of us who understand science and technology, who can actually create things never seen before and extend mankind's knowledge, will sequester themselves away from the growing ignorance and barbarity and wait for everything to fall apart. Or better yet, get ourselves off of this world and expand out into the rest of the solar system and beyond. But I digress.

Such a division is not a good thing as it can lead to unintended consequences. As Robert Heinlein noted:

Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.

This is known as “bad luck.”

If you look at the above quote and then at Atlas Shrugged you'll see he is describing exactly what happened in Rand's dystopian tome.

Think it can't happen? You'd be wrong. We're already seeing the effect today as the willful ignorance typified by reliance on pseudo-science and so-called 'spiritual' beliefs supplant the knowledge of technology and science. The time will come when they denigrate those who are the keepers of all of that hard won knowledge, assuming it hasn't already reached that point.

Am I painting a dark picture of what ignorance about how things work might bring about? Yup, absolutely. Am I off the mark about a likely outcome if this ignorance continues unabated? No way in hell. If anything I'm probably understating the effects of the problem.

2/26/2017

Thoughts On A Sunday

This weekend was a half-and-half weekend, with temperatures in the 60's yesterday and in the 30's today. Yesterday I opened the windows in The Manse to air it out, purging the rather stale air. This morning I had to fire up the Official Weekend Pundit Woodstove to keep the chill from invading. (I prefer to use the stove rather than the propane-fired furnace as cord wood is cheap and propane is not.)

Much of the snow around The Manse has melted away, including some of the snow banks left behind when BeezleBub plowed out the driveway.

We'll be back into warmer temperatures tomorrow, maybe into the 50's, but it's going to be very breezy.

*****************


I, for one, will not be watching the Academy Awards tonight. If I want to hear ignorant political rhetoric I'll go watch a political rally.

Why these celebrities think that their political viewpoints mean anything to anyone outside of Hollywood baffles me. Do they think their words carry more weight than anyone else's? Obviously they do. Too bad they live in a bubble, hearing nothing but voices that agree with them, those voices being no more in touch with the real world than the celebrities themselves.

Frankly, I'll find more entertainment and enlightenment watching the Daytona 500 later today.

*****************


The Barrister laments the decay of his beloved Connecticut, seeing it turn from a frugal and wealthy state – it used to have the highest per capita income in the US – into a Blue State with high taxes, debt in the billions, cities that are now hellholes, and businesses and wealthy residents fleeing for greener pastures.

For a century, this conservative Protestant state, the "Land of Steady Habits," was a state of tough Yankee self-reliance and no faith in or expectations from government of any sort. It had no income tax until recent years (damn that Republican jerk Gov. Lowell Weicker who put in the tax and fled the state to avoid his taxes as soon as he was out of office).

Weicker swore that the state income tax would solve all the problems. It was the opposite, with deeper and deeper debt and higher and higher taxes ever since. Did I mention that, since Weicker, the state has been basically bankrupt?

Under the Blue Model, jobs have fled, manufacturing has fled, the cities are in the ICU and run by various union, ethnic, or other mobsters and predators, and the government unions control the levers of government. Catastrophe. Few remember that in the 1960s Hartford was the most desirable small city in America according to Time magazine. Now it is a dangerous (at night) shithole of degeneracy, dependency, and hugely-expensive and failing government schools.

I remember Connecticut fondly.

I grew up summers there, spending every summer in the coastal town of Madison. When the WP Parents retired, they moved to our family's beach house, expecting to spend the rest of their lives there. But 13 years ago they had to leave a town and a home they loved because they had been taxed so heavily it was rapidly draining their retirement funds.

That beach house had been in our family for almost 60 years. It had been built by my maternal grandfather, a machinist. They were forced to sell it and move away because the Blue State that is Connecticut decided they they could use my parents' retirement funds better than they could. (It didn't help that a lot of Pretentious Yuppie Scumbags from New York moved into town and drove a town spending spree that had property taxes doubling in short order. A lot of families that had lived in Madison for generations were driven out.)

*****************


Speaking of Connecticut's downfall, there is something called the Connecticut Exodus driven by high taxes, rapidly rising crime rates, and a collapsing economy. People and businesses are leaving in large numbers. More would leave, but they can't sell their homes. Those that can leave cite the lack of jobs, overbearing business regulations, and confiscatory taxes as just some of the reasons for fleeing. What makes it even worse is that Governor Malloy keeps doubling down on stupid, squeezing businesses and residents for more tax money. It's gotten so bad that even corporate giants like General Electric have pulled up stakes.

Will the last Progressive leaving Connecticut please turn off the lights?

*****************


Looking a little farther south, in this case Philadelphia, we're seeing yet another example of Democrat ignorance about economics playing out in real life.

In this case, the soda tax imposed by the city is having major unintended consequences, the primary one being the expected revenues from the tax have fallen far short of projections. That the city planned on using those revenues to help support the city's schools has left a hole in their budget.

Another unintended consequence has been the loss of jobs as both distributors and stores start laying off employees who are no longer needed because of the fall off of sales, which has been estimated to be between 30 and 50 percent.

I expect that any day now some representative of the City of Philadelphia will claim the layoffs will in some way be a positive thing. Tell that to the people who no longer have jobs.

*****************


I'm starting to sound like a broken record, but this bears repeating.

Just when I thought they couldn't get any stupider....

Nothing that goes on in California surprises me any more.

*****************


This is how you respond to SJWs, particularly the more ignorant than usual ones.

Hmm. Maybe I'm being too generous. I've found that every SJW I've encountered so far is egregiously ignorant, and proud of it.

*****************


Cap'n Teach shows us yet another lesson in economics, in this case when a company like Starbucks goes SJW and announces it will hire 10,000 refugees over the next 5 years.

You can't tell me that won't negatively affect their bottom line.

*****************


It should be no surprise to anyone paying attention to CPAC 2017 that there's a move afoot to draft Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke to run for the US Senate in 2018.

Clarke is an outspoken critic of feelgood policing, welfare, and government policies put forth by the state of Wisconsin as well as the federal government. He sees first hand the destructive effects of such policies and knows what works and what doesn't.

He'd be running against incumbent US Senator Tammy Baldwin, a not very popular Democrat who barely squeaked by during her last election. That the tide has turned against many of the out-of-touch Progressive Democrats is another factor that should hopefully prompt Clarke to run against her next year.

*****************


Some retailers are learning the hard way that there's a price to pay for going political when it comes to which goods they will or will not sell. It is particularly true when the SJWs threaten boycotts and the retailers cave. Or worse, when they use in-your-face displays that offend the very people they depend upon to stay in business.

On the other hand many of the rest of us sane folks turn calls for boycotts from the SJWs into 'buycotts', taking our business to the very people being boycotted by the fragile SJW snowflakes as a not so subtle “Up Yours!”

*****************


It is time for the police to get back to policing, particularly when it comes to quelling violent protests and riots. If they do not, the protests/riots will become all to common because the so-called protesters will know there will be little or no repercussions from their actions and people will die.

At the Berkeley protest/riot against Milo Yiannapoulos, the campus and city police did nothing to quell the violence and looting. The police have sent the message that rioting is perfectly acceptable as a means of silencing someone the 'protesters' don't like. (Of course I also know that quite a few of those rioters didn't care one way or the other about Milo. They just wanted to break up and burn stuff that belonged to other people.)

If the police had broken it up as they were duty bound to do, the chances of follow on 'protests' would diminish.

The BLM bulls**t has got to stop. BLM doesn't give a rat's ass about black lives. If they did they would be working hard to stop the black on black murders in their neighborhoods which far outweigh the minuscule numbers of police-on-black killings by orders of magnitude. BLM is an excuse to sanction the killing of cops, rioting, looting, and more block-on-black crimes. It's time for the police to stop being afraid of offending the permanently offended and to do their jobs.

As a side note, one has to wonder just how many of those types of riots would take place in a city where many residents and business owners carry guns? If I had to guess, I'd say none.

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the weather is very up and down temperature-wise, a lot of the snow has disappeared, and where the wood pile is shrinking a lot slower than expected.

2/25/2017

Trump Declines Dinner With Hostile Press Corps

It is telling that Donald Trump has decided to forego attending the White House Correspondents Association annual dinner. Anyone paying attention knows that he has little use or respect for the ‘usual suspects’, meaning the more rabid and biased White House Press Corps. So why would he attend a gala that will be filled with people that have but one mission in life, that being to destroy him by any means necessary?

They have made their disdain and, dare I say, outright hatred of the President well known. They are angry with him because he refuses to acknowledge that they are the self-appointed gatekeepers of news and information from and about the White House and President. That he refuses to call on them during press conferences, preferring to call on reporters from smaller media outlets rather than the purveyors of fake news (like CNN) has pissed them off to no end.

It appears to me that they haven’t realized that their days of being the voice for the people is fading away, something that has been happening for some time and has accelerated since the advent of the Internet. They do not fulfill the position they once did and they are becoming increasingly superfluous, particularly as new media outlets are being used by the President and the White House that bypasses the once-important gatekeepers.

One other thing that has escaped the notice of press corps – Donald Trump is a master when it comes to controlling the message and getting that message out despite a hostile media. He cut his teeth on media manipulation and getting his message out as it was part and parcel of his business success. That he’s turned that acumen into a bludgeon to use against the overtly hostile press shouldn’t surprise anyone…but it has, much to the detriment of that very same hostile press corps.

So it should not be a surprise to anyone that Trump has decided not to attend a dinner held by people who have no love for him. Why waste the time better used for other things?

2/19/2017

Thoughts On A Sunday

This weekend has been the mirror image of last weekend, with very warm temps (51ºF yesterday and 49ºF today). The warm temps and bright sunlight has certainly helped melt away the snow and ice covering The Manse's driveway, making it possible for the missus to make it up and down the driveway in her FWD Honda. (I think her next vehicle will be either 4WD or AWD which will solve part of the problem.)

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Mike Hendrix looks at something most of the MSM-DNC and the Ninth Circuit Court overlooked, Or chose to overlook), that being Trump's executive order to halt immigrants, visitors, and refugees from the seven Muslim countries was perfectly legal and constitutional. How can that be?

Under Title VIII, Chapter 12, Sub-Chapter II, Part II, § 1182 of the U.S. Code, “Inadmissible Aliens”, if the President of the United States “finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate.”

It was passed by Congress and signed by the President back in the 1950's. It has been used by a number of presidents since then, including President Obama. But now , all of a sudden, it is illegal for the President to issue such orders? Under which part of the US Constitution?

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It's bad enough radical feminism has managed to make just about any kind of sexual contact between men and women on college campuses the equivalent of rape (but lesbian sex is perfectly OK), they now want to extend that same silliness to high schools in Maryland.

I dare say they'll also push to make that true throughout society in general.

They have pushed the false “Rape crisis on campus” narrative every single day. They haven't been able to prove their claims except by misquoting a non-scientific survey that even the researchers have strongly stated should not be used as it was highly subjective and misleading for the purposes the gender feminists have been using it.

I have a feeling this is going to backfire on them and destroy what little credibility they have (if they ever had any). It's just another witch hunt, no different from the day care child molestation frenzy that swept through the nation a couple of decades ago. It destroyed countless lives and sent innocent people to prison for crimes they did not commit. The only difference with the present day witch hunt is that it is politically motivated and that makes it suspect right from the beginning.

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Oh Noes!

The GOP wants NASA to focus more on space rather than climate science...or Muslim outreach.

That seems like a good idea considering NASA's charter is to expand mankind's understanding of space and to “boldly go where no man has gone before”. That's what NASA used to do. Then they got caught up ina lot of the political and ideological BS that infected so many other parts of government and they forgot that space is what they were supposed to be doing.

It's about time someone reminded them of that.

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I found it refreshing that Trump's rally in Florida began with First Lady Melania Trump reciting the Lord's Prayer.

Of course the usual suspects have been hammering her and the President for doing so.

Too bad.

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This is a somewhat abbreviated TOAS as we had company for most of the day – a good friend I hadn't seen in some time came up from the flatlands and we caught up on a number of things. It's always good to see old and dear friends, so I am not going to apologize for a foreshortened post today.

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the warm weather will be leaving for a couple pf days but returning by Wednesday, where the February Vacation skiers have been crowding the ski slopes, and where once again Monday has returned all to quickly.

2/16/2017

The Oroville Dam Debacle - A Big Question

Watching the continuing drama at the Oroville Dam in California has been showing all of us one big example of hubris. Between the lack of much needed maintenance (“We're in drought that will never end. Why do we need to fix something that's never going to be used again?”), ignored warnings, the focus of much needed funds towards pipe-dreams, I'd say the state of California is finally receiving the bill for their hubris.

Looking at the original problem, the collapsing main spillway, I have one simple question that no one has answered, to the best of my knowledge, that being “Where the hell is the rebar?”

Watching the videos and numerous pictures that have been appearing on the news and the 'Net, the one think that I have noticed is the total lack of reinforcing bars in any of the failed concrete. If that was part of the original design I have to say that's one heck of a design flaw. If it was part of the original designs, then who remove it, or worse, decided to 'save' some money by eliminating it and compromising the integrity of the spillway?

In either case, a properly designed spillway should not have collapsed like that. In fact, it should have been stronger than the surrounding soil and withstood any undermining. Instead, there is a gaping chasm where there should be a spillway and the structural integrity of the entire dam has been compromised.

2/15/2017

Voter Fraud In New Hampshire

You've heard the claims made by Donald Trump about voter fraud in New Hampshire and Fergis Cullen's challenge to pay $1000 to anyone who can prove voter fraud. Cullen states there is not on jot of evidence such fraud took place.

He's wrong.

Evidence of voter fraud resides in the thousands of affidavits filed by new voters during same day voter registration on election day. However the New Hampshire Attorney General's office hasn't moved to investigate a single one. Not one. So how can anyone say that not a single case of voter fraud was committed during the past couple of elections?

One way to do away with part of the problem is to eliminate same day registration, something authorized by the New Hampshire Legislature back in 2011. The following year over 20,000 affidavits were filed during the 2012 elections, and of those 20,000 plus affidavits, a fifth, or over 4,400 could not be verified. While the claim has been made that even if all 4.400+ ballots cast had gone to one party or the other that it wouldn't have influenced the presidential race, and maybe the congressional races, there were plenty of lower level races that could have been greatly influenced by those fraudulent votes. In the recent election, one of the big race- that between Maggie Hassan and then-incumbent US Senator Kelly Ayotte was decided by a mere 743 votes. It wouldn't have taken too many fraudulent votes to sway that outcome.

One of the biggest problems we have is that New Hampshire's present laws do not prevent out-of-state college students from voting as residents of New Hampshire. Same day voter registration doesn't help that one bit. In fact, it is quite possible for an out-of-state college student to vote here in New Hampshire and their home state by use of an absentee ballot. But the one thing that makes what they're doing questionable is that college dormitories should not be considered legal domiciles, meaning someone living there cannot use it as the basis for claiming residency in the state of New Hampshire. It would not surprise me that in some college towns there are town ordinances that state that to be the case. One has to ask how many of those out-of-state students that register to vote here also have New Hampshire driver licenses? If I had to guess, I'd say very few, if any. If they haven't bothered to get a New Hampshire driver's license after all the time they've been in state, then how can they register to vote? I would be surprised if they would be able to get a drivers license because they don't actually have a legal domicile.

In most towns hotel rooms can't be considered legal domiciles, that's why a lot of out-of-state campaign workers rent rooms at someone's home for the duration of their stay, register to vote on the day of the election using that address as their domicile (this usually happens during the New Hampshire Primary), then moving on to the next state the day after the election is over. In some cases that means a campaign worker may be able to vote in more than one primary during the primary season. Think it can't happen? You'd be wrong as there have been more than a few examples of multiple campaign workers for a candidate using the same address as their legal domicile even if they aren't actually living there. While this would have little effect on the elections in November, it still skews results during the primaries.

I think it's time that New Hampshire do away with same day registration and put in place some kind of residency requirement that bans out-of-state college students and transient (campaign) workers from being able to register to vote in New Hampshire elections, be they local, state, or federal contests because they aren't really residents.

It's but one small step, but we have to start somewhere.

2/12/2017

Thoughts On A Sunday

I admit that I started this on Saturday mid-afternoon. I figure the snow will be falling hard enough come this time Sunday to make maintaining power, and hence Internet connectivity, an iffy thing. If the forecast snow was going to be light and fluffy this might not be an issue, but the Weather GuysTM have been saying it might be wet and heavy snow. If that is indeed the case, and adding in the high winds also forecast for this storm, fallen tree limbs and power outages are a given. So I figured I'd start this early and get it posted some time before the snow starts to fall.

Better safe than sorry.

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If you need an example of how not to run a school system, particularly when it comes to maintaining discipline, one only need look at the St. Paul, Minnesota school systems.

By embracing a pie-in-the-sky feel good racial equity system of discipline, meaning the problem wasn't the fault of disruptive, unruly, and dare I say, criminal students, but of the inherent racism of the teachers and staff. The results?

Chaos.

There was a precipitous drop in student enrollments as parents removed their kids from the toxic and violent environment. No learning took place. Teachers were ignored, minimized, and assaulted. The thugs knew they wouldn't be punished for their actions, so they ran the schools.

To say this was a failed experiment would be an understatement. It should the moral bankruptcy of the Progressive line that racism is institutional and the only way to cure it is to allow the so-called victims free rein as a means of balancing it out. It is pretentious poppycock. It is pseudo-intellectual drivel masquerading as science.

In the end St. Paul had to buy out the superintendent who pushed this drivel, one Valeria Silva, to the tune of $800,000. It will take millions more to undo the damage done to the city's schools by this idiot.

One has to wonder how it is so many have forgotten Dr. Martin Luther King Jr's dream, that being judged by the content of one's character and not the color of one's skin.

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If you want to see what kind of debate goes on at a New Hampshire Town Meeting, take a look at these two posts from Skip (Part 1 here and Part 2 here) to get a taste of what we discuss, debate, argue about, and eventually vote upon.

This is small town America democracy in action. The local townspeople have a direct say in how much the town and school will spend over the upcoming year. They can approve or disapprove a budget item, change it, or even eliminate it. They can approve, disapprove, or modify new ordinances, eliminate old ones, or even file a petition warrant article to change some aspect of town governance.

As I like to ask folks who call my office to complain about spending or property taxes in our town, “Did you show up for town meeting and did you vote?” If they answer 'No', then I tell them politely that they have no right to complain. They had the opportunity to make their opinion known and to vote on spending measures which in turn affect out property taxes. They may think that their vote doesn't count, but I've seen more than a few warrant articles pass or fail by only a few votes, or in a very few case, one vote. But if they can't be bothered to vote then they have no right to complain.

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Helping the missus with her math homework has reminded me just how much I had forgotten about some of the simpler math. While calculus is the working math for much of what I do for work, math consisting of complex fractions had the rust falling away from the long unused math machinery.

It's nice to be reminded of the beauty of basic mathematics.

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Just when I thought they couldn't get any stupider.

The Progressives keep pushing the meme that “White Privilege” and “Cultural Imperialism” are the cause of all of our social ills. They're even making 'social justice' classes that explore these memes mandatory at some colleges, like UMass Amherst.

What they never are willing to admit is that the very people they say they are trying to help, basically anyone who isn't a white heterosexual male, are being hurt far more then being helped. When you make everyone a victim, then no one is a victim.

If WHM's become the new Jews, how long before they are targeted for elimination? That eliminationist rhetoric has been on the rise among the SJW Geheime Staatspolizei should be sending warning signals to everyone. After all, should they make their dream come to fruition, who will be next on their hit list?

The one difference between the Jews of Nazi Germany and the WHM's of America that will not make it easy for these fascist pigs? We have a boatload more guns than they do and we know how to use them. They depend upon others to fight their battles while we do our own fighting, and a lot of us have combat experience.

(H/T Instapundit)

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That federal civil servants are filled with “a sense of dread” since Trump took office shows me that something is right in Washington.

Trump promised to slash the federal bureaucracy that has been increasingly choking off business, the economy, and our every day lives. It is something that is long overdue>

Across the vast federal bureaucracy, Donald J. Trump’s arrival in the White House has spread anxiety, frustration, fear and resistance among many of the two million nonpolitical civil servants who say they work for the public, not a particular president.

At the Environmental Protection Agency, a group of scientists strategized this past week about how to slow-walk President Trump’s environmental orders without being fired. At the Treasury Department, civil servants are quietly gathering information about whistle-blower protections as they polish their resumés.

At the United States Digital Service — the youthful cadre of employees who left jobs at Google, Facebook or Microsoft to join the Obama administration — workers are debating how to stop Mr. Trump should he want to use the databases they made more efficient to target specific immigrant groups.

I find it interesting that the USDS, an agency under the control of the President, would work to undermine the person who is their boss. They work for him, not the other way around. If Trump wants to use the databases they improved to go after illegal immigrants, people who broke the law to get here, then that is prerogative and perfectly legal under the law.

That employees of the EPA are worried about their jobs is also a good thing, seeing as how the EPA has been a rogue agency for the past 8 years and they feel they are not beholden to the law. If they go outside their charter, ignore court rulings, and run roughshod over the people of the United States, then they should fear for their jobs because they aren't doing them. They have their own agenda that has nothing to do with the charter of the EPA and should be fired.

Good riddance to bad rubbish.

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The snow from the Storm O' Doom started falling just around noon, about two hours before I wrote this. It has been slowly ramping up but is not bad at the moment. The tough part will come when the winds start howling a few hours from now.

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the snow is falling, the winds are quiet (for now), and where we're all hunkering down for yet another snow storm.