3/03/2024

Thoughts On A Sunday

It seems winter has fled, whether for but a couple of weeks or until next winter is unknown. I know it has been a disappointing winter for me, not seeing the temperatures or snowfall we usually see during a New Hampshire winter. Some will say “It’s climate change!” even though if one goes a little over 150 miles to the west of us you’ll see winter has been normal – cold and lots of snow.

We haven’t been seeing the usual winter weather patterns – coastal storms driven by the jet stream which give us the Nor’easters which dump a lot of snow and pull a lot of frigid air down from Canada. Instead most of the systems we’ve seen this winter have swept in from west to east, generating a lot of snow from the Sierras through the Great Lakes, but fizzling out by the time it reaches New England. It has also pulled warmer air in from the South which has given us spring-like weather a couple of months earlier than usual.

I do have to wonder if this means I might be able to get the Official Weekend Lake Winnipesaukee Runabout into the water a couple of weeks earlier than usual. (See? There’s always an upside to something like this.)

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I keep seeing stories about CNN and every time I do my first thought is “They’re still on the air?”

The once-great cable news station has deteriorated, particularly after it’s founder, Ted Turner, sold it to Warner Brothers in 1991. It is a shadow of its former self.

A number of its offerings such as its CNN+ subscription streaming service crashed and burned. It didn’t help that CNN went full left and become more about telling viewers what to think about the news rather than just reporting like they used during its Ted Turner days. Is it any wonder they’ve been shedding viewers like cats and dogs shed their fur in the spring?

“CNN is trying to keep up with the news landscape and become a digital-first provider,” a source said. “It makes sense for them to pursue anchors who have already established a presence there — especially if TV becomes history in their portfolio!”

--snip--

Something tells me CNN is going the way of the Hindenburg.

Yeah, hence the “crash and burn” I mentioned above...though to be accurate, the Hindenburg burned then crashed.

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First, it’s “White Rural Rage” is a danger to Democracy. Now it’s “White Rural voters”. I wish the Left would make up its mind.

Forget the deplorables. What we have here is the REAL threat to our Democracy. Which is, drumroll please, the rage of the white rural voters.

No, I’m not kidding. That’s according to two very VERY liberal writers, one of whom used to write for the Washington Post. Tom Schaller and Paul Waldman wrote a book titled: “White Rural Rage: The Threat to American Democracy.” Isn’t that such a darling title? Well, Paul wrote an op-ed for MSNBC in which he informs us that the real danger to this country is because of the rage embedded into the psyche of the WHITE rural voters.

--snip--

Because they used data in their book to make their case, this must mean it’s true that those of us who live in, or grew up in rural areas as I did, and have the audacity to be WHITE, are the very real threat to our Democracy. The two authors appeared on MSNBC last week and you REALLY need to watch, but also keep throwable things out of reach.

I guess they can’t help themselves, demonizing rural white people as if they are the cause of all the ills being suffered in the urban blue areas, particularly because they refuse to vote for Progressives.

Yeah. Right.

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Might ‘liberal fragility’ explain why liberals do what they do?

Liberals really are extremely fragile people. This helps explain why they need “safe spaces” with cuddly stuffed animals, grief counselors, and warning labels against “microaggressions.”

The latest evidence is a completely unironic and totally un-self-aware piece in the New York Times about the anguish of liberal law professors having to teach constitutional law at a time when the Supreme Court leans right. It’s so upsetting that some professors are moved to tears and can’t conceive of continuing. The New York Times thinks this is actually “a crisis.

I think they need to “man up” or “grow a pair” or whatever it is they call it these days because from reading the rest of the article and linked columns tells me that far too many of these Progressives were coddled and never learned how to deal with adversity, even such ‘adversity’ that most people would merely shrug off and continue doing what needed to be done. No tears required.

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Have you ever wondered why college tuition is so high, having risen at a rate well above inflation? This may be one reason why: Yale University employs nearly one administrator per undergrad.

Other colleges and universities have ratios running between 1:1 like Yale, and 1 administrator to 4 undergrads for others like the University of Florida. Both ratios are far too high.

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And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the ice has been disappearing, the temps are going to be in the 50’s, and where I don’t care (this time) that Monday is coming back again.

3/02/2024

Gun Free Zones = Sitting Duck Zones

I find it hard to believe this debate is still going on, that being that banning guns from some areas – school grounds, shopping malls, public areas – will prevent gun violence. Yet we see again and again these “Gun Free Zones” become targets for those wishing to kill as many people as they can without worrying about being stopped by an armed citizen. The most recently updated stats dealing with Gun Free Zones and school shootings show an interesting correlation.

It’s tragic; people are tired of seeing the senseless loss of innocent lives in educational settings. Despite mounting gun control laws on the Federal and state level, school-related shootings continue to rise (2023 being the highest year yet, with 388 school shootings in only six months). Regardless of political affiliation or thoughts on well-regulated militias and the right to bear arms, one thing is clear; what we’ve been doing for the past forty years isn’t working.

Each school shooting incident in America reflects one thing, children are vulnerable. Schools tend to be easy targets while simultaneously producing mentally ill individuals with an unstoppable intent to harm others.

Unfortunately, we still have a lot to learn about school shootings. There are a lot of unanswered questions. But what we can do is investigate the changes between societal shifts and legislation over the years and spark meaningful conversations about stopping school shootings. Of course, the clock is ticking down to the next horrific headline, so we need to start these meaningful conversations now.

For more than a few mass shootings the people doing the shooting weren’t legally allowed to own or carry guns. Many others were ‘known risks’ – people whose family, friends, and others knew the shooter was ‘not right in the head’ well before they went on the attack. When it comes to school shootings one of those commenting on the linked post hit the nail on the head:

Three common factors in most (not all) of these rampage killings:

1. A broken home.
2. Shooter had been a victim of bullying.
3. Psychotropic meds like SSRIs and antipsychotics.

This list came from the book How To Make A Monster: A Sensible Look At Rampage Killers.

In “How To Make A Monster”, Paul Glasco performs a true root cause analysis of rampage killers - sometimes referred to as "mass shooters". The book looks at how broken homes, being bullied, and children on psychotropic drugs can affect personalities as young people mature. Previous killers from shootings such as Columbine, Virginia Tech, Las Vegas, and Parkland are broken down based on these causal factors.

Imposing nonsensical “Gun Free Zones” with no way to actually enforce them, though most law-abiding gun owners will not carry their firearms in those areas, is not the way to prevent mass shootings. If there were armed guards in those zones to protect the people in those zones, that would be one thing. However, that is rarely the case and that in turns means everyone in those zones is in a “Sitting Duck Zone” because they have no means of defending themselves, at least not legally. All these zones do is guarantee more casualties.

It’s time to rethink Gun Free Zones and do away with them.

PS - One last thought that seems true to me:

2/25/2024

Thoughts On A Sunday

I can’t believe just how much this case of bronchitis has been kicking me in the butt, particularly yesterday. (Today isn’t much better...so far.) It seems I’ve been dealing with this for a month and every time I thought I was finally seeing an end to it it would return with a vengeance. About the only positive thing about this is that I know it isn’t Covid. (Three negative Covid tests tell me that.)

It has certainly affected me in ways I hadn’t expected it to and I’m not talking out the symptoms or their side effects. Its more to do with not wanting to expose anyone, particularly the WP Mom, to what I’ve been dealing with over the past month. That has meant working from home more than usual, foregoing meetings or attending them via Teams, Zoom, or GoToMeeting, and curtailing social activities. It has sucked. In some ways it was worse than anything we dealt with during the whole Covid pandemic scam.

It has also left me tired which has meant I haven’t had energy for many of my usual activities, including blogging. When I’m going to bed an hour or two earlier than usual it eats into what little free time I have and most of the time I blog it’s during the evening. (TOAS is an exception as I work on it here and there throughout the day.) It’s the reason my Friday post was delayed one day and why there was no Saturday post.

Hopefully I’ll get past this soon enough and everything can get back to normal.

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Is the outcome of yesterday’s GOP primary in South Carolina a surprise to anyone? That Trump won in all but three the districts in the state says something, particularly about Nikki Haley’s popularity. She was a pretty good governor from what I gathered and an equally good UN ambassador. (Ironically, she was appointed by Trump.)

Does Haley’s trouncing by Trump mean she’s ready to drop out? From what reports I’ve seen it appears she’s going to wait until after the Super Tuesday Primaries to make a decision about whether she’ll remain in the race or not.

I expect she’ll be spending a lot of time hopping from state to state over the next couple of weeks, attempting to visiting Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont and Virginia if she can. The only place she definitely won’t be visiting is American Samoa, which is also holding its primary on that same day.

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It seems that Sweden’s “tolerance of diverse youth” has a problem, that problem being those diverse youth have no tolerance for the Swedes in any way shape or form.

It could be the reason a lot of Swedes would like to see those diverse youth and their families to go back to the Muslim countries from whence they came. Considering violent crime, particularly sexual assault, has skyrocketed in Sweden, most being committed by Sweden’s Muslim refugees, I can see why the Swedes would like them to leave.

If memory serves, Norway has been having a similar problem.

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From the “Just When I Thought They Couldn’t Get Any Stupider” Department comes this from Seattle:

Seattle Public School Kids Being Told Proper English and Grammar is ‘White Supremacy’

This headline makes me want to ask this question: Is it only proper English and grammar that are ‘rayciss’? Or is it only Western languages – English, French, German, Flemish, Italian, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, Portuguese, and so on – where proper usage and grammar are ‘rayciss’? Or is it all languages worldwide?

If I had to guess – and I don’t need to – it’s primarily the Western European languages, with the exception of Spanish, that are seen as ‘rayciss’.

Buncha’ friggin’ morons. They need to be fired, removed from any position with any connection to educating children because of their moronic ideology.

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Vegan leather? Really?

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What do the latest statistics tell us about gun ownership in the US? A lot.

In 2023, 32% of Americans own at least one firearm. There are approximately 259,000,000 adults, which equates to 82,880,000 people who own a firearm in the U.S.

Firearm ownership increased by 6.7% in the U.S. (all demographics) between 2017 and 2023. During that same time period, women increased ownership by 13.6%, and Hispanics increased ownership by 33.3%.

Not only is gun ownership on the rise, but some demographics are purchasing guns at higher rates today than ever before.

Furthermore, 7.5 million adults (2.9% of adults in the U.S.) became first-time gun owners between 2019 and 2021. Of those, 5.4 million did not have a firearm in the household before purchasing.

The post has a number of enlightening charts and statistics which will counter many of the claims of anti-gunners. It delineates the number of American households with guns, the number of guns an average gun owner has, as well as the primary reasons why Americans own guns.

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And that’s the (abbreviated) new from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the lake still isn’t frozen over, we’re going from single digit low temperatures (this morning) to high temps in the 50’s on Wednesday, and where Monday is (inevitably) arriving again whether we want it to or not.

2/24/2024

Friday (Not So) Funny - Gun Free Zones

Mea culpa. I can't believe I screwed this up...again. Then again I have been under the weather over the past few days...so I am blaming the meds I've been taking to fend off a nasty case of bronchitis. (That's my story and I'm sticking to it.)

So let's get to it even though it is a little late.


The only thing Gun Free Zones do is let potential shooters know no one there will be armed. Gun Free Zones are in fact Free Fire Zones.

I recall someone making a comments about how Pro-gun, i.e. RKBA folks, hadn't stopped a shooter in a shopping mall after all of their claims about armed civilians stopping such shooters. I recall the reply that ran something like this: "They didn't stop the shooter because they followed the law. They were unarmed because they were in a Gun-Free Zone." The cognitive dissonance in folks like that never cease to amaze me.

2/18/2024

Thoughts On A Sunday

Winter has been teasing us, giving us some snow, then having warmer than normal weather. We’re having a snow deficit, being about 11 inches shy of normal so far. There’s still about 4 weeks of winter left, at least according to the calendar, meaning there’s still plenty of time to make up for the deficit. Will Mother Nature provide the conditions and the precipitation to make up for the existing deficit? Only time will tell.

At least it’s been cold enough for the ski areas to make snow, so they haven’t been feeling the snow deficit as much as the cross-country trails and snowmobile clubs have.

While some will make the claim that it’s climate change caused by all of us evil humans, you’ll see other areas, some about 100 miles to the west, have seen either normal or above normal snowfall and below normal temperatures. That doesn’t say “climate change” to me. Instead that says “weather cycles”.

==++++==


Adding on to my post from yesterday, I would have to say this is yet another aspect of the suborning of our election process and installing a self-anointed Progressive elite as our permanent government – Election by Lawfare. It’s just another version of the banana republic-style election process: arrest and jail any viable opposition candidates.

It also means there will be similar actions against companies and owners who the elites don’t like or will not fall in line with “The Narrative”. Think it won’t happen? Think again:

Worth noting, too, that the courts of New York (and Delaware, in going after Elon Musk) are sending a signal to businesses that they’re no longer trustworthy legal environments. And the politics of the moment aren’t important, because anyone can wind up targeted by the blob in the future. I suspect we’ll see a gradual move to other jurisdictions by many.

I have to wonder if we’ll see companies moving to more red states – maybe to Texas or one of the other 25 states supporting Texas?

Only time will tell.

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Oh no! It looks like California’s megadrought has gotten much worse. It’s so bad in fact that it is now stealing water that would have fallen in the Northwest.

Two years ago, media outlets were headlining strident messages that California had moved into a “megadrought” and that there was little hope for relief.

Story after story claimed that global warming had permanently changed the situation and that California’s reservoirs would remain unfilled.

Fast forward two years and these apocalyptic warnings appear more like a rendition of chicken-little than reliable climate science.

Massive rainfall has hit the Golden State, while we in the Northwest are enjoying a warmer-than-normal winter with less snowpack than normal.

I feel so sorry for those folks in California living in the growing desert that is the Pyrite State.

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Here is another take on the planned trucker’s boycott of New York City which is supposed to start tomorrow. The comments tell us what they’re thinking.

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If we need any additional truth that Chicago is being run by malignant morons, then there’s this little tidbit about actions taken by Chicago’s government that will not work out the way Mayor Johnson thinks it will. I expect we’ll see even more crime, more shootings, and more homocides.

The city of Chicago is discontinuing the use of a gunshot detection technology service called ‘ShotSpotter’ this year. When questioned this week about what will take its place, Johnson suggested that there may be some emergency situations that could get a ‘non-police’ response.

This concept has disaster written all over it. Johnson singled out mental health emergencies as an example, but any law enforcement officer will tell you that these situations are dangerous because you never know what you’re walking into. Is the person armed? High on drugs or drunk?

All this will do is make the city less safe for the people. It’s exactly the wrong thing to do.

This has all the makings of the same disasters seen in other blue cities who defunded their police departments and suggested using ‘non-police’ responses for some calls. That hasn’t worked out the way city governments thought it would and they ended up with more crime, not less. Why does Chicago think they won’t suffer the same fate? It’s not like they’re trying anything any different from the others that have gone before. They’re insane as in “trying the same thing over and over again but expecting different results this time” kind of insane. How many Chicago residents will pay the price for yet another failed attempt at abandoning long-proven process and policies?

As Thomas Sowell said, “The past four five decades have seen things that work being replaced with things that sound good.” Yeah, they sound good, but they don’t work and the folks who pushed it will make excuses, probably the most common being “We didn’t try it hard enough.”

Sound familiar?

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And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where it’s been sunny and snowy at the same time, the lake is starting to freeze over...again, and where some of us have the day off tomorrow...and some us don’t.

2/17/2024

Will Trump's Fraud Conviction Help Usher Him Back Into The Oval Office?

Now that the New York division of the Mob that is the DNC has managed to convict Trump in their kangaroo court and laid hundreds of millions of dollars in fines for his ‘fraud’, all as part of their campaign to prevent him from regaining the White House, polls are likely to show that Trump’s numbers versus Biden have changed...in his favor.

More people appear to have been convinced that this and other charges and lawsuits against are politically motivated, meant solely to keep him out of the presidential race. They also have noticed that the one set of criminal charges that would definitely prevent him for running for office have not been filed – insurrection – because they know they will never get a conviction. Now that all video of January 6th has been made public, it has become evident that Trump did not foment insurrection, and in fact tried to keep any protests civil.

The actions by the Democrat cabal that inflicted us with SloJoe Biden is finding their actions so far are having consequences, one of them being Trump’s increasing popularity even as Biden’s numbers tank. One unforeseen consequence: Truckers are warning that loads for NYC will be rejected starting on Monday. I’ll bet the Democrats didn’t see that coming.

Truck drivers transport between 70% to 73% of all freight in the United States. Therefore, when truckers begin discussing plans on social media to boycott loads to progressive hellhole New York City, it's important to pay attention.

X user Chicago1Ray, who appears to be a Midwest truck driver, shared a video late Friday night detailing that a number of truck drivers will begin denying loads to NYC on Monday.

"I don't know how far across the country this is - or how many truckers are going start denying loads to NYC - but I'll tell you - you f**k around and find out," Chicago1Ray said.

He continued: "We're tired of motherf**king leftist f**king with Trump. Okay ... Motherfu**ers start to get tired of this shit. Our bosses aren't going to care if we deny loads. We'll go somewhere else."

If this comes to pass one has to wonder how long New York Governor Hochul, New York AG Letitia James, and New York City Mayor Adams will be relevant. If things go sideways I wonder how long they will remain in office? I also have to wonder if Trump’s popularity will increase as well.

Only time will tell.

2/11/2024

Thoughts On A Sunday

Yes, there was no Saturday post. It wasn’t that I neglected to post. Rather, it was due to a rather nasty cold and some of the meds I took to mitigate the symptoms. Those meds had me feeling sleepy most of the day and by early evening I was out for the count. It wasn’t until I woke this morning that I realized I hadn’t posted anything yesterday. It happens now and then, not all that often, but I will admit to feeling ‘off’ when I miss posting.

With that out of the way, it was a gorgeous day yesterday with sunny skies (for the most part) and temperatures in the upper 40’s and just about 50ºF here at The Gulch. Some places in New Hampshire saw record breaking temperatures in the mid-60’s. It will be warm again today though not nearly as warm as it was yesterday. In fact we’ll be seeing below freezing temperatures this week, with snow forecast for Tuesday. The Weather GuysTM haven’t told us their ‘educated guess’ about how much snow we’ll get, though I expect they’ll do so either sometime tonight or tomorrow morning.

I will state that I am disappointed with our winter as we haven’t seen the snow we usually expect and temperatures haven’t been what we usually see. This has led to Ice In to be declared on Lake Winnipesaukee weeks later than usual.

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Does anyone remember Volkswagen’s two tries to sell their version of a pickup truck here in the US? The first one was a chopped Microbus. The second one was based on the Rabbit/Golf platform. Neither was all that great.

Recently, Volkswagen has been looking at yet another pickup truck to sell in the US, but in the end decided not to make that mistake...again.

Volkswagen is no longer looking at offering a pickup truck in the U.S. or Canada. The closest you will get to a VW truck stateside is to get an electric pickup from the new Scout brand, but that is still years away.

VW dealers have long clamored for a pickup truck to sell to Americans, and the automaker pursued a number of possible ways to make it happen, but the idea has been shelved. "It is not in the plans anymore," Pablo Di Si, president and CEO, Volkswagen Group of America and CEO of Volkswagen Brand North American Region, tells MotorTrend at the Chicago Auto Show.

--snip--

Some at VW expressed interest in a Ranger-derived version of the Amarok (seen below) for the U.S., as well (after all, the Ranger is sold here), but this part of the deal was sensitive and never came to fruition.

The last thing we need is yet another pickup truck, particularly one that is merely a derivative of an existing platform.

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First, they came for our light bulbs. Then they came for our appliances. Then our ceiling fans. And then our appliances again. Now Washington state wants to up the ante as they’re coming for our tires.

I’m not kidding.

It seems Washington state has aimed their sights on tires, more specifically they want to mandate use of low-rolling resistance tires on vehicles.

Let’s see: straws, plastic anything, gas powered anything, light bulbs, refrigerators, guns, diving boards, disposable diapers, charcoal grills, the nozzle on your hose and shower head to control your water consumption, the thermostat in your house to control the temperature you live at, and now the tires on your car, so you can be unsafe when you drive, but environmentally responsible in some mythical way.

In Washinton state, Democrats want to outlaw the most popular tires. House Bill 2262 intends to disrupt people’s lives by mandating low rolling resistance tires on all passenger vehicles. Of course, this tire ban, by eliminating the tires that everyone wants to use, punishes the innocent. If violated, it would subject people to a $10,000 fine per occurrence.

I find it disturbing that the always virtue signaling elite have decided that these tires, notorious for having relatively poor traction in wet road conditions, are The Answer to what they see as automotive ills. (It’s ironic that it’s Washington State pushing this idea considering how wet it is there year round.) That mandated use of such tires are likely to increase the number of traffic accidents and the number of fatalities that go with them is immaterial to them. I have no doubt that such deaths will be tacitly welcomed as a means of “reducing the surplus population”.

Like masks, these tires are nothing more than social theater. The tires aren’t safe in wet weather, something that the northwest has plenty of, and are also more expensive. They would also need to be swapped out during winter months for snow tires if traveling in areas with seasonal snowfall.

--snip--

The worst part of all of this is that these are nothing more than unsubstantiated, idealistic, woke fallacies.

In case you haven’t noticed, everything about environmental restoration is all about sacrifice, without any promise of reward or even justification. For the people in an always wet, and often snowy, area, the current tires have served the people well. This is nothing more than a test of limitations. Will the public give up something they know and trust for a generated lie on the word of the government?

Naturally, those pushing this absurdity want the citizens to believe that swapping out their trusty treads for these environmental alternatives is a small price to pay for the planet. Guilt is their favorite playing card.

I can see a future where citizens of Washington state start a class action lawsuit against the state for the myriad of injuries and wrongful deaths caused by such and ill-advised mandate, particularly if that mandate were ‘snuck’ in within the body of other legislation. I don’t put it past them as we’ve seen such acts before, both at the state and federal level, where special legislation that is unrelated to the main body of a bill is placed. There is no real public hearing since it is nearly invisible...just what the sponsor(s) want.

All we can do is hope this incredibly stupid idea dies a much deserved death.

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This couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch of people...and is long overdue.

It appears that Hollywood’s box office receipts are hitting “alarming lows”.

It isn’t all that surprising to me considering the junk Hollywood has been trying to foist on the movie-going public over the past few years.

It’s still very early in 2024 but woke Hollywood is having a very bad year already. Box office sales are way down and show no signs of improving in the near future.

Perhaps audiences are tired of political lectures from leftists who despise everything about traditional America. Or maybe no one wants to see another tired superhero movie. How many Marvels movies are there now, anyway? Who can keep track?

This is a simple case of people voting with their wallets.

The last time I actually went to the movies was pre-Covid when the WP Mom and I went to see the first Downton Abbey movie. Any of the newer movies I’ve seen since then have either been via streaming or from Blu-Ray DVDs I’ve purchased. I did neither blindly as I either had suggestions from friends or caught reviews from sources I trust to not point me to a ‘woke’ movie. It seems a lot of other movie fans are doing the same thing and staying away from movie theaters in droves. Unless Hollywood dumps its ‘woke’ approach to their customers and start making movies that entertain rather than preaching an in-your-face doctrine those same customers, this decline will continue until the concept of Hollywood will be something spoken of only in the past tense.

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Here are some of the stories highlighted in this episode of Stupid People Of The Week:

Correction officer charged with murder after allegedly firing more than a dozen rounds in road-rage incident.

Food bank receives ‘record’ expired 25-year-old jar of cheese sauce.

Drunk, naked Florida woman wielding peeler knife barges into RaceTrac, threatens to kill staff: deputies.

Florida man hands deputy driver’s license with meth on it during traffic stop: Sheriff Grady Judd.

DPD: Suspect allegedly bit off, spit out officer’s finger during arrest.

Just when you think people can’t get any stupider, those people prove me wrong.

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And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the weather has been nice, the ice still hasn’t completely covered the lake, and where we’re preparing for our next bout of snow.