8/19/2018

Thoughts On A Sunday

With the exception only a few minor touch-ups, the work on The Manse in preparation for selling has been completed. All the painting is done. All the repair/renovation tasks have been completed. The Manse has been cleaned top to bottom. The over half of the feline compliment will be staying at relatives while The Manse is being shown. (Three will be staying here because they require special care that does not lend itself to being performed by others unfamiliar with their needs.)

With the real estate market as it is, our realtor expects The Manse will sell quickly.

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As bad as this story is, I have to say I was not surprised by the outcome. Worse, I could be tempted to say they had it coming.

A naïve American couple believing that “evil is a make-believe concept” found out the hard way that evil exists and is deadly.

They decided to prove their belief by biking across Africa, parts of Europe and into parts of the Middle East and southern Asia. They ended up being stabbed to death by ISIS fighters while riding across Tajikistan near the Afghanistan border. So ended their naiveté.

From reading the post by Sarah Hoyt and an article posted by the Daily Caller, it appears that these nominal adults were more like children who never had to face adversity, were never left unsupervised, or ever experienced unkind words.

First, how protected and innocent do you have to be to think the worst evil in the world is “ax murderers” and not the men who smile and smile and are villains. And second, how can you think that everyone – everyone – is wonderful and generous and kind. Sure, when you travel through as a tourist, you will mostly be tolerated and treated nicely. Sure, most humans are fundamentally decent, for a given description of decent. But consider that these twits were bicycling from the tip of Africa to the North, and yet had no concept that not only evil does exist but a lot of societies are set up in such a way as to be evil to women, to children, and even to the men who are — by and large in such societies — in charge. How could they be so blind unless they were looking at the world through the eyes of kindergartners convinced that because someone smiled and gave them cookies they must be nice?


The problem is that there far too many people just like this young couple who cannot conceive of the possibility that people they don’t even know would have no problem robbing them, beating them, raping them, or killing them. If they are naïve about things like that, then what else might they believe that “just ain’t so”, to paraphrase Ronaldus Magnus.

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Steve MacDonald ponders the real reason why the Washington Post, CNN, and BuzzFeed want the name and addresses of the jurors of the Manafort trial. The reason is simple, really.

Intimidation.

They want guilty. To make sure they get there they are willing to unleash liberal mobs on the homes and lives of innocent jurors to get what they want.

The judge, himself, says he has US Marshall protection 24-hours a day because he has been threatened.

Ladies and gentleman of the public jury, this is the promise of Liberal rule. It has always been and always will.

If you do not care now you will be made to care after it is too late to stop them.

So the media wing of the DNC has tasked itself to make sure the verdict turns out the way their political masters want in a trial that never should have taken place because it was well outside the scope of Robert Mueller’s mandate.

Too bad they didn’t get their way…NOT.

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It’s hard to believe how quickly summer has been passing. It seems it was only a couple of weeks ago that it was Memorial Day and a few days ago we were celebrating Independence Day. But Labor Day is only a couple of short weeks away and the kids start school next week

While I haven’t been out in the Official Weekend Pundit Lake Winnipesaukee Runabout (aka The Boat) nearly as often as I would have liked, I’ve still managed to get out at least twice a week on average. Work prepping The Manse for sale has taken up a considerable amount of time which cut into some of the time I would have spent out on the lake. But now that The Manse is finally going on the market I plan to make up as much time as I can over the next two months and spend more time out on the lake before The Boat is pulled out of the water and prepped for winter.

And so it goes.

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Are people obsessed with cats?

Yes. Yes we are. What’s it to ya?

Considering that the feline contingent here at The Manse numbers seven, I’d say the WP family certainly is.

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To quote Squidward, “Just when I thought they couldn’t get any stupider.”

In this case, the California legislature passed a resolution that demands that Congress and President Trump “apologize to illegal aliens, including MS-13”.

Really? Apologize to people who broke our laws just coming into the US they way they did, and others who have committed violent crimes after breaking our laws just coming into the US the way they did? I think there can no longer be any doubt – California is being run by the inmates of an insane asylum.

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And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the weather has turned pleasant, people are running around trying to enjoy one last week of summer vacation, and where summer is running out all too quickly.

8/12/2018

Thoughts On A Sunday

Just when you think you’ve gotten everything taken care of in regards to prepping your home for sale, you find something else that needs fixing. Such was the case this past week when I found a last minute repair that needed doing. It was something a bit past my abilities and skill to attend to, so a call went out to one of our more skilled local handymen to deal with it. The need for the repair delayed listing The Manse for another week. While much of the repair has been done, there are still a few more details to complete, something that must wait until things dry out a bit after the rain we had over the weekend.

And so it goes.

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When anyone looks at data from any kind of source, in many cases it is not the raw data but data filtered and massaged. Sometimes such filtering removes important information that leads to improper conclusions.

It is no different when it comes social media, where posts are censored, ‘tweaked’, or outright banned. How does this skew the ‘conclusions’, or in this case, the message being but forth?

It’s simple, really.

It silences dissent. But that’s the point, isn’t it?

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This isn’t exactly news to me and it’s something I’ve been complaining about for a long time.

A couple of studies have found that smart phones harm the dining experience.

That certainly has been my experience and it is one reason one rule we have instituted at our family gatherings is all phones be put away for the duration. No texting. No Facebook. No Instagram. No e-mail. No web surfing. The same rule should apply when eating a meal at home or at a restaurant. If people are gathering to enjoy each other’s company, they should actually be there, not stepping into cyberspace and leaving the real world behind.

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Yet another energy project that can help northern New England bring cleaner electricity, much needed electricity, has been targeted by the Neo-Luddites who will not sanction energy projects of any kind, with the exception of politically correct (and very expensive and unreliable) ‘renewable’ energy sources. (Hydro is not politically correct which is why a separate bunch of Neo-Luddites killed a new power line that would have brought massive amounts of hydro-electric power into New England.)

This same group worked hard to kill the Kinder Morgan natural gas pipeline that would have greatly increase the availability of natural gas from Pennsylvania in New England. At the moment the only natural gas pipeline into New England is at full capacity and cannot meet the demand. This forces New England to import natural gas from Yemen during winter to meet the high demand. This means we pay much higher natural gas prices than the rest of the nation even though domestic natural gas is cheap, and that suits these Neo-Luddite watermelon environmentalists just fine.

These jerks will not be satisfied until we are paying the highest electric rates in the nation (Oh, wait, some us already are!) for unreliable electricity that will not meet the demand and will damage our economy, all to meet some pie-in-the-sky dream of 100% renewable energy powered by unicorn farts.

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This stuff writes itself.

The RNC has been running some ads that Chicks On The Right have stated are absolutely awesome. The kicker?

They’re using video from the Left that shows just how cray cray they are. Other than some narrative they’ve been able to use video created by the Progressives and their minions.

How better to run a campaign than to use your opponents’ own invective against them?

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And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where it’s rained all weekend, the work on the house continues, and where summer is slipping by to quickly.

8/05/2018

Thoughts On A Sunday

The last few bits of work to The Manse are close to being finished, with one last bit of painting to be finished and parts of our office and the last of my ham shack to be packed away. One or two last trips to the dump and everything should be done.

It’s been a long haul to get to this point, with work starting back last September with initial cleanouts and brush cutting, followed by new roofing installed on the Official Weekend Pundit Garage and The Manse’s driveway being rebuilt and repaved. Repainting the interior of the house, removing and refinishing the heating baseboards, replacing and refinishing some of the woodwork started in the spring. More landscaping work and repair of the decks started in the spring, and then refinishing the decks and some of the front steps were completed last week.

Doing it a little at a time was far less daunting than trying to get everything done in a very short period of time. I’m just glad it’s almost over.

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Do they hate you?

Yes. Yes they do.

How much?

This much.

Any questions?

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Then there’s this little bit of violence baiting from Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes making a lame and very poor ‘joke’ about Senator Rand Paul’s beating at the hands of a neighbor.

On has to wonder when the violent rhetoric will be surpassed by actual violence against Republicans/conservatives/’not’ Democrats. We’ve already seen the so-called ‘antifa’ fascists beating anyone they disagree with, meaning anyone who isn’t an anarchist/communist/Progressive.

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I found it interesting that Candice Owens had her Twitter account suspended for posting tweets identical to those of new NYT editor Sarah Jeong. The only difference? Owens changed the word “white” in Jeong’s tweets to “black” and “Jews”.

So why wasn’t Jeong’s account suspended?

Because at Twitter, bashing white people is perfectly acceptable behavior, even though it’s just as racist as bashing any other ethnic group.

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I think David Starr is right on the money with this – Vote all the bastards out!

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We also need better federal judges, something that President Trump is working on, because apparently at least one of them doesn’t understand federal law.

In this case we have a judge who has ordered DACA to be reinstated even though it isn’t covered by statutory law, was created out of thin air by President Obama even though he knew it was both unconstitutional and against the law.

The judge’s excuse for his ruling? ICE didn’t explain their rationale for suspending DACA. Did they really need to?

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It appears the Left is starting to let their mask slip. In this case a Santa Barbara, California city council member came right out and told everyone “Unfortunately, common sense is just not common. We have to regulate every aspect of people’s lives.

And there you have it. “We have to regulate every aspect of people’s lives.” This Progressive asshat believes no one is capable of running their own lives, so he and others like him will have to do it for us. I have no doubt that many of his fellow travelers believe exactly the same thing and are working to make sure they will take control of everything.

One unintended consequence of something like that? Armed rebellion by those who will not submit to their control. And the first victims of that rebellion are likely to be the very people telling us they are going to control our lives because we are incapable of running them ourselves.

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And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where summer continues, work on the Manse is almost finished, and where I really need to get back out onto the lake.

7/29/2018

Thoughts On A Sunday

The long run getting The Manse ready to sell is coming to a close. All of the painting has been completed with one small exception, and that will be done later this week. All of the interior renovations are complete so all that’s left is a top to bottom cleaning, some staging work (curtains, throws, a few pillows, and a couple of runners), and packing up anything we won’t need until ensconced in The New Manse.

The realtor will be by to take photos once everything is staged and we’ll then be on the market!

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I came across a great YouTube channel for those of you interested in guns, interactions with police, how to properly carry concealed, firearms training, and general Second Amendment issues. It’s called Mike the Cop and he has a great series of videos that I have been enjoying over the past week or so.

Check him out.

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Want to know what it would be like to work under a communist government? Then all you have to do is work for the City of New York under Comrade Mayor de Blasio.

It appears that he and his underling oligarchs are more interested in “getting theirs” rather than actually doing their jobs and helping the people of New York City. Between that and the Comrade Mayor doing his best to handcuff the NYPD and bring NYC back to the Bad Old Days of the 1970’s.

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Was Barack Hussein Obama the worst US President ever?

Yes.

Considering the damage he did to this country, between his disastrous domestic policy, the economic pain he caused due to his incompetence, his disjointed foreign policy that insulted and disrespected our allies and sucked up to our enemies, he was easily the worst president in US history. And somewhere, Jimmy Carter is celebrating, chanting “I’m Number Two! I’m Number Two!”

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Has California become a ‘No Go’ zone for Republicans? From some of the actions that took place this past week, I’d have to say that it’s likely. Stacy McCain has come to that conclusion.

This week, a vandal destroyed President Trump’s star on the Hollywood “Walk of Fame.” Thursday night, Elijah Schaffer and Joy Villa were recording a video at the site (Schaffer hosts a YouTube channel called “Slightly Offensive”) when they were surrounded by an angry mob of Democrat thugs. Being a Republican is more or less considered a “hate crime” nowadays in California, and Schaffer was wearing a red-white-and-blue Trump jersey. The mob started chanting “F–k Donald Trump” and — because they’re Democrats, and therefore thieves — one of the thugs stole a $3,000 camera from Schaffer’s crew. This led to a brawl and police are now looking for two suspects.

At this rate I have a feeling that California will devolve into mob rule not unlike the Reign of Terror after the French Revolution.

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If anyone tries to convince you that renewables generate cheap electricity and are the wave of the future, point them to this post at Jo Nova that shows that just the opposite is true, at least in Australia.

Of course I would expect our home grown renewable fanatics will make the claim that “It won’t happen here because we’ll do it better”. But unlike them, most of us know that won’t be the case. It will be no different than what Australia has experienced. It will also be the same as what Germany has experienced, that being exponentially increasing electric rates, higher dependence upon non-green electricity sources because the renewable energy is not dispatchable and woefully unpredictable.

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Is it possible for any state in the US to be “too white”? According to “experts”, my home state of New Hampshire and neighboring states of Maine and Vermont are too white and they feel they need to “fix” the problem.

Excuse me? How are they going to do that, forced relocation of minorities into those states? It almost seems (to me) that’s what they’re advocating. I’m sure that will go over well with the folks being relocated.

How is that not racist?

In a truly diverse world, we look up to actions and ideas with an eye toward that old saw “judge them by the content of their character, not the color of their skin.”

The Diversity movement doesn’t work that way. The colorblind world is all about color. It’s about numbers. Butts in seats, or in front of classrooms, or at our workplaces.

What about Live Free or Die?

In a genuinely free society, people go where they want for reasons that are their own.

And in a truly diverse world personal preference would drive demographics and that would be good enough. Sorry, say the “experts,” it’s not.

Super-white New Hampshire (with its White State-Potato) needs to get more people of color to come and live here.

“What, we’re going to get a new home? Really? Where? New Hampshire? Are you effin’ kidding me? It’s goddamn cold up there! Why the hell would we want to go there? We like it right here where we are! What do you mean we don’t have a choice? Oh, we do? We can choose where we’re going to go? Great! What are our choices? Wait, what? New Hampshire, Vermont, or Maine? That’s it? What the f**k?!!! That isn’t any better! Why the hell are you doing this to us? What did we ever do to you? Diversity? F**k diversity! We ain’t goin’ nowhere!!”

Yeah, that’ll work.

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And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the weather has become more pleasant, the work on The Manse is almost done, and where once again I am looking forward to going into work so I can get some rest.

7/22/2018

Thoughts On A Sunday

The rains arrived with a vengeance this morning. Not that I minded its arrival. We’ve needed the rain as it’s been rather dry here the past month. However the rain brought all work outside The Manse to a halt.

There’s still some painting and repairs to complete before The Manse goes on the market and we really didn’t need yet another delay. We are already three weeks behind schedule and the ‘hot market’ window will be closing when school starts late next month.

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With the ongoing debate about energy, specifically the means of generating electricity, the push seems to be for expanding renewables in favor of other more traditional technologies like oil, coal, natural gas, and particularly nuclear.

While renewables sound appealing, the reality is that they aren’t all that great (with the exception of hydro), particularly when you look at the costs. The cost of maintaining the renewables like wind and solar is much higher than originally forecast and their service lifetime is shorter. Because of the intermittent nature such renewables, meaning they cannot be counted on to generate power at any specific time, something that makes them non-dispatchable. The rest of the system has to adjust to the variable nature of renewable sources, making the system less stable.

Another downside to renewables – subsidies.

While many utilities receive subsidies of one form or another, renewables cannot exist without them. The others can, even nuclear. (Yes, the federal government heavily underwrites the storage/disposal of spent nuclear fuel, but that’s under federal non-proliferation laws.)

With all of that in mind, nuclear is one of the best non-carbon energy sources available. And if Elysium Industries has its way, nuclear power may be on the brink of a resurgence.

While a number of companies have been working on next generation reactors, many which have yet to build their first prototypes, Elysium is building upon already proven molten salt technology using materials that are already nuclear qualified. While it is taking a slightly different path in regards to the molten salt, preferring to use chloride salts rather than the fluoride salts of other reactor. As molten salt thorium reactors have a number of advantages over uranium/plutonium reactors, I think it is time that we make the move in this direction.

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Why doesn’t this surprise me?

If you have the misfortune to be a young Republican in Washington, DC, or worse, a Trump staffer, the dating scene is all but non-existent. Considering the atmosphere in the District, particularly after eight years of the Obama Administration and the entrenched Deep State it left behind, that Republicans are in effect social outcasts is to be expected. After all, they are not of the proper political ideology and do not live within the constantly shifting confines of the Left’s paradigm. They are the untermenschen of Washington, to be devoutly ignored, minimalized, and disparaged.

Yet another gleaming example of the intolerant Tolerant Left.

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After the Supreme Court decision that allows states to collect sales taxes from other states where their residents make Internet purchases, one has to think that the 45 states that do have sales taxes expected the revenues to start rolling in once they enacted legislation to collect them. However they may find that a few states, particularly those 5 states that have no sales tax of their own may balk at collecting them for the states that do. That’s certainly the case with my home state of New Hampshire.

While New Hampshire doesn’t like the idea of collecting revenue for other states (and there has been a NH Supreme Court decision – Town Faire Tire vs. Massachusetts Department of Revenue Administration - that have stated that New Hampshire doesn’t have to), it may be forced to do so. However that won’t come without a cost for those states demanding our state do so.

Since New Hampshire does not have a system in place for collecting sales taxes, retailers will have to invest time and money to install the software in their systems to do so as well as pay for the constant updates that will be required to keep the tax requirements up to date. So what plan does the state legislature and the governor have in mind to deal with this?

Make the states demanding we collect sales taxes for them reimburse all of the businesses for the expenses they incur to implement the collection of those taxes. They will also be required to present themselves to the New Hampshire Attorney General’s office and prove they have the legal circumstances to ask for the collection and aren’t unfairly targeting small businesses.

How many states will want to go through all of that to collect what will in the end be less than what they think they will get? (I expect that California, Illinois, and Connecticut will do so because they desperately need the revenue. And maybe New Jersey. Of course there will be many different sales tax rates in some states, between the state, county, and municipal sales taxes that exist that have imposed.)

As one commenter to the linked post suggested, “Ironically, my fee, for administration and management of your taxes, is the EXACT amount of your taxes...PLUS postage.”

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I haven’t quite figured out the math, but so far no one has been able to explain to me how it is that having more than one job lowers the unemployment rate. Does the Department of Labor automatically assume that one job filled equates to one person? Or do they look at how many people are looking for work versus how many people have jobs?

Senator Elizabeth Warren seems to think that all of the real reason the unemployment rate is so low is because everyone is working more than one job. This is a similar point that Congressional hopeful Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has brought up as well. What makes it worse is that she has a degree in economics and should know better. But she’s pushing the Progressive narrative and purposely ignoring real world economics as a means of gaining elective office.

To this point I haven’t seen where having more than one job affects the unemployment rate. Using Warren’s and Ocasio-Cortez’s reasoning, we could have a theoretical unemployment rate in the negative numbers if everyone capable of working had more than one job. The labor participation rate could exceed 100% under that same reasoning.

Does anyone else see a problem with this?

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Oh, noes! Colorado snowflakes has a sad because Starbucks has released a coffee mug showing that state’s oil and gas industry.

The blue Colorado mug, part of the coffee giant’s “Been There” series touting the distinctive features of U.S. states and cities, included drawings of bighorn sheep, pine trees, mountains, skiers — and a drilling rig.

Losing their minds over a friggin’ coffee mug? These folks need to get a life.

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And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the rains have arrived for the next couple of days, all outside work has come to a halt, and where once again I look forward to Monday because it means I can get some rest at work.

7/15/2018

Thoughts On A Sunday

Another weekend winds to close, meaning that the work I’ve been doing to prep The Manse for sale is slacking off. Work intrudes on doing the work that remains. Little will be done tomorrow due to other commitments and Tuesday looks doubtful as thunderstorms are forecast for the afternoon, meaning any work to be done after work is likely to be pre-empted by Mother Nature.

Isn’t that always the way?

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Could it be that women are avoiding STEM careers not because they aren’t interested, but because they are dissuaded by college professors outside the science fields?

It doesn’t surprise me if this is indeed the case. After all, things like engineering “is only for those who enjoy “rote” work. Engineering is not creative. There’s only one right answer. You’ll live your life in a cubicle. It’s dehumanizing. You’ll never talk to anyone. And, of course, it’s sexist. All this from professors whose only substantive experience with STEM is a forced march through a single statistics course in college, if that.”

I find it amusing that some of these professors seem to think that engineering has “only one right answer”. Not in my 40-some years of engineering it doesn’t. What a lame claim.

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Wirecutter gets into the whole “Why do women always try to change the man they’re involved with?” thing. As he writes:

It seems like damned near every relationship I’ve been in, the woman felt like I could be improved on. I never could understand that s**t – you got together because you like each other, but after you get together you find out that you’re basically just the rough draft. Sure, there’s always something about the other person that you don’t care for, but with guys it’s different. Sometimes we just accept the fact that that’s the way that particular woman is and hey! accept her for who she is. Other times we just figure it ain’t worth the f**king time and effort so we just deal with it. If she blows monster farts right before she wakes up, get up before she does. That’s dealing with it.

I’ve been involved with a few women like that and the relationships didn’t last as it was quite apparent to me that weren’t really interested in me as I was. They wanted to turn me into someone else, someone that was nothing like the real me and that wasn’t going to happen.

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If you need any more evidence of the fake news being put forward by the MSM all one needs to look at the Washington Post’s story that got it wrong about US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley.

With their ‘layers and layers of fact-checkers’, you’d think that could have got this one right, wouldn’t you? But then again, it doesn’t fit the Progressive narrative so the facts must be ignored and the hit piece on Nikki Haley must be published. Too bad it backfired on them…again.

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See what happens in the real world when Progressives run cities? In case you didn’t know, nothing good. Between rising crime rates, shootings, feces in the streets, increasing numbers of the homeless, decaying schools, and rising taxes, endless examples show us that the Blue Model just doesn’t work.

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And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where summer continues apace, NASCAR returns next weekend, and where Monday is getting here none too soon. (I need to rest!)

7/08/2018

Thoughts On A Sunday

It’s nice to have a decent bout of weather, with the high temps and humidity being replaced with temps in the 70’s and dew points in the low 50’s. It’s made for much better weather for working outside The Manse in preparation for putting the place on the market.

All kinds of outside work is easier when you don’t have to worry about heat stroke. Painting is easier without worrying about sweat dripping on the wet paint.

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Speaking of heat waves, it was 107 years ago that a heat wave slammed the northeast, killing an estimated 2000 in New England alone. Temperatures in excess of 100°F slammed cities from Baltimore to Bangor for eleven days. While I didn’t see any reports about the relative humidity, I am assuming it was probably very high which added to the misery.

No air conditioning. Fans and ice were luxuries. Removing clothing was not considered an option due to the morals of the time which only added to the injuries and deaths.

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At the other end of the temperature spectrum, it has snowed in Capetown, South Africa.

Obviously it’s all global warming’s fault…or Al Gore was visiting South Africa.

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Between all of the hate directed against Trump and his staffers, intolerance towards Trump supporters including attacks against minors, fake news propagated by a major news organization (AP), Democrats trying very hard to make good economic news appear to be awful along with their promises to raise taxes, re-impose taxes and regulations done away with by Trump, open the borders, impose sanctions on anyone and everyone disagreeing with them, is it any wonder people are turning away from the Democrat party and joining the #WalkAway movement?

It appears the DNC is doing everything it can to make sure it will lose the mid-term elections. Of course I expect they’ll be trying to figure out what happened and will crank up the rhetoric and calls for confrontation and violence against anyone not supporting them. And should that happen I expect there will be bloodshed and it will be their ‘supporters’ committing it. Then, of course, they will decry the actions of those who defend themselves by wounding or killing their assailants.

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Mind you, this is only one poll, but this one by Rasmussen shows that 74% of likely US voters prefer a free market economic system over a socialist system.

We’ve seen more than enough socialist economic systems to know that they just don’t work. Such a highly controlled economic system has one major flaw and it always has – it short circuits all of the market feedback systems and the economy doesn’t respond to the needs of the consumers. Shortages of needed goods become a constant experience. Even if those goods are available their quality will be low. “Standing on line” will become an everyday experience…except for the governmental elite. They will not be standing in line for anything. They will have access to goods and services that everyone else cannot get.

Socialist economic systems could work, but only one way: keep the damn people out of it. If everything were controlled by an AI it might work. But once people get involved in controlling any aspect of the economic system it will deteriorate and become highly dysfunctional.

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Gee, I remember when ignorance of the law was no excuse. But in Canada all you have to be is from a different culture in order to be acquitted of sexual assault.

The perpetrator has been in Canada for 3 years. He understands the laws there. But because he is from Syria he gets a free pass? I have a feeling that if tried something like that someplace like Texas he’d either be convicted, or assuming he didn’t get dead by the actions of one of the parents of his victims. (“Why did you shoot the victim 17 times?” “Well, your honor, he just plain needed killin’.” “Oh, why the heck didn’t you just say so? Case dismissed!”)

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Despite not being part of either the Kyoto Protocols or the Paris Accords, the US has managed to lower its CO2 emissions to a level not seen since 1985.

How many other nations have managed to even come close to matching the US in lowering their CO2 emissions? Let’s take a count, shall we?

Hmm. Nope, not that one…or that one.

Ahh, here we are!

None. Not one. NOT. ONE.

We could do even better if we decided to go whole hog for nuclear power, specifically the Third or Fourth Generation plants. If we can get thorium reactors online we’d have all of the energy we would ever need, wouldn’t have to use up large tracts of land for solar or wind, could get rid of all of the existing nuclear fuel waste, build small modular reactors (which lowers costs) and cluster them together rather than building One Big Reactor, and make our power generation system more dispersed. Then the only need we’d have for natural gas-fired power plants would be as ‘peaker’ plants, power plants used to hand peak demands. (Nuclear plants don’t throttle up and down very quickly. Gas plants can be brought on and off line quickly, hence their use as peaker plants.) Our CO2 emissions could be reduced by an even greater extent.

Of course I expect the ‘usual suspects’ to discount the decrease in the US emissions and find some way to blame other nation’s failures to reduce their emissions on us.

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And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the summerfolk up for the Fourth of July holiday have headed home, the lake has calmed, and where I’m glad Monday is arriving so I can get some rest.

7/01/2018

Thoughts On A Sunday

We are in the second day of a forecast 8-day long heat wave, with temps today in the 90’s and the heat index around 100°F. Work around The Manse has been curtailed a bit with the bulk of it taking place in the morning before it gets too hot…for the most part.

I have been refinishing the three decks and front steps, working on them when they are being shaded by The Manse. That has meant working on them until 2PM or so.

The weather has also lent itself to late day trips out onto the lake in the Official Weekend Pundit Lake Winnipesaukee Runabout over the past three days. I expect to hit the lake after work tomorrow before heading home. (Needless to say, The Boat has been used quite a bit since Memorial Day and I’ve gone through three tanks of gas - about 90 gallons - since then. It hasn’t been sitting idle at the dock for days on end.

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Have you ever noticed the biggest socialists all tend to come from wealthy families? That certainly seems to be the case for Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the Democrat running for one of New York’s congressional districts. The so-called “Girl from the Bronx” is the product of a well-to-do family.

Most socialists tend to be insulated from the effects of their ideology, having the money and ‘pull’ to distance themselves from having to live the lifestyle of the proletariat. It’s why they push so hard for socialism because it will only affect those ‘beneath’ them.

I think if they knew they would be obliged to live the same ways as the proles they would abandon the idea of socialism and distance themselves from it as far as possible.

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Apparently not everyone is enamored of Ms. Ocasio-Cortez. A former co-worker has less than kind things to say about her and her work ethic. She appeared to show her true colors in regards to her belief that what’s hers is hers and what’s yours is negotiable, just like a true socialist.

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The #WalkAway campaign is growing as more disaffected Democrats are leaving the Democrat Party over its extreme leftward shift and abandonment of moderate Democrats.

How many potential Ronald Reagans have found that, like him, they didn’t leave the Democrat Party so much as it left them? What will this mean for the DNC going forward, particularly if the minority voters they have always counted on turn their backs on them because they no longer represent their interests and beliefs?

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Gee, it seems that ‘millennial’ women aren’t really happy with their sex lives. It isn’t so much that they aren’t having sex so much as the sex they’re having isn’t all that great.

The idea that women are programmed by the patriarchy to agree to sex even when they don’t want to is not a novel concept among modern feminists. The 2017 viral New Yorker story “Cat Person” dealt with this issue, as havenumerous advice columns and women’s magazines. How is it possible, though, that the generation of women’s sexual empowerment is the generation most in need of this advice?

Perhaps their expectations are too high, particularly in light of the “modern feminist expectations for their sexual encounters.”

If I had to guess, those ‘expectations’ are unrealistic.

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Anyone who knows anything about guns understands that reporters really don’t understand guns.

They cannot tell us what defines an assault rifle (other than they are ‘scary looking guns’), do not understand the difference between clips and magazines, do not understand the difference between semi-automatic and fully automatic weapons, and haven’t a clue about how a shotgun works or its limitations. It seems all of their knowledge is based upon what they see in the movies, much of which tends to violate a few laws of physics, and inaccurately portrays how easy it is to hit a target, particularly when said target is moving.

But we know that none of that will stop them from ‘reporting’ about how bad guns are while ignoring the person wielding them.

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Can wind turbines make you sick?

Yes.

It is something that has been known for some time but dutifully ignored by proponents of wind power. After all, negative health effects of a renewable energy source doesn’t fit the narrative. Therefore there can be no negative effects of wind turbines, even if there are.

Does that clear things up?

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I find it interesting to look at two entirely different viewpoints about Donald Trump. The Daily Beast calls him an “Early Stage Mussolini” while the Sydney Morning Herald reminds us that he has been keeping his campaign promises.

One has to wonder where Trump’s promises to ‘make the trains run on time’ were in his platform. I certainly haven’t been able to find it.

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And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the hot weather has settled in, the summerfolk are keeping cool, and where going to work on Monday gives me a chance to rest in air-conditioned comfort.

6/24/2018

Thoughts On A Sunday

I wish I could say it was a quiet weekend here around The Manse, but between trying to get more chores done in preparation for putting The Manse on the market, helping the WP Mom shop for a new car, and making an attempt to repair some yard equipment, it hasn't been quiet or restful by any means. The wet weather hasn't helped either, meaning some outside chores had to be postponed for a few more days.

All in all, getting a house ready to sell is taking a lot more time (and money) than we had originally expected. It has also eaten into what little time off I usually have, meaning much of my weekend posting tends to be shorter than what I am used to posting.

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I find it both amusing and disturbing that many of Trump's Democrat detractors seem to have very short memories and a distorted sense of time. They act as if the so-called illegal immigrant crisis at the border is something that only now has come into being. That it has been going on for years, well before President Trump even thought about running for office, is somehow his fault? Worse, some of the photos used to prove the 'crisis' is real were misleading, showing young children separated from their parents by an unfeeling US government when their parents were really just off camera, and in many cases, others showing children in 'cages' were taken during the Obama Administration. Yet somehow it's all the fault of the Trump Administration.

I think too many of these folks going out of their minds about this non-crisis have been off their meds.

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Discussions I've had with the token Progressive at work have covered a wide range of topics. The latest has been the pending trade war because Trump's threatened imposition of tariffs to match those imposed upon US goods. More than once I told him that the move was strategic, getting those nations to the negotiation table. He saw it as the opening shots in a lengthy and costly trade war.

Apparently has has had no problem with the lopsided application of tariffs, seeing it as a way to make us pay for our sins (though he never has told me what these supposed 'sins' are).

Surprise surprise when the nations threatened with tariffs suddenly decide that maybe talking things through and perhaps even lifting the tariffs might be an idea whose time has come.

The other nations really don't want a trade war because they know it will likely hurt them as much if not more so than it will hurt us. They want trade to continue, so reducing or removing tariffs suddenly seems like a good idea.

Gee, it's almost like Trump knows what he's doing.

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I honestly have no words to describe my reaction to this story.

Really. None.

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I love it when the local media get something so wrong that there's no way they can explain it away. In this case the story about an 18-wheeler accident, with the truck hauling a load of liquid nitrogen. According to the news report, a half-mile area around the tanker was evacuated due to the risk of a tank explosion.

Anyone who remembers their basic high school chemistry knows that nitrogen is not flammable. There would have been no danger of a tank explosion. On the other hand a tank rupture was a possibility, something that would have spilled thousands of gallons of liquid nitrogen, something that would immediately freeze anything it came into contact with, making it as brittle as glass. That in itself is one heck of a hazard and is a more likely explanation for evacuation of the local area.

They can't even get a story like that straight? Even if the authorities had made that claim, one would think that there was someone at the station that might have realized the explanation was bogus. But maybe that's too much to hope for these days as most journalists tend to be woefully ignorant about how things actually work.

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How do you get more Trump? This is how:

“The Resistance simply is against everything President Trump does. He figured out more than a year ago how to work this to his advantage. The Resistance now opposes tax cuts, a booming economy, and peace in Korea. The Resistance also now supports MS-13, open borders, and Kim Jong Un.”

Do they honestly think they have a winning platform for the 2018 midterms and the 2020 presidential race with the above? It's obvious that they do, not understanding that most of America doesn't agree with them. Do they think that people really want to return to the Bad Old Days?

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And that is the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the weather was wettish, the indoor activities took precedence, and where we're hoping to get some dry weather over next weekend.

6/17/2018

Thoughts On A Sunday

The last day of Motorcycle week is upon us as the visiting bikers get in some of the last activities of the festival and many make their way home. Some will linger for another day or two, but most will have departed by early evening today.

The large influx of motorcycles gave me the perfect excuse to not travel, giving me plenty of time to work around The Manse in preparation for putting it on the market. Yesterday and today was spent stripping the decks with a pressure washer (mostly to remove dirt, grime, and loose paint, not strip all of the paint off) in preparation for repainting them some time over the next few days. Some of the yard work was also done, though it is nowhere near being finished. (Then again, it never really is, is it?)

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This is something I think more college kids should be doing. For that fact, so should adults from the Blue urban areas.

On a blustery afternoon in April, I filed into a van along with 10 students from Harvard. We had just spent the last two days in Chicopee, Mass., where we had chatted with the police chief and his force, the mayor and his staff, small-business owners, waitresses and firemen about their struggles living in small-town America.

The undergrads were buzzing with their impressions. Chicopee is about 90 miles west of their prestigious university in Cambridge, but when it comes to shared experience, it might as well have been 1,000 light years away.

As they settled in, I looked at them.

“So,” I said, “who do you think most of the people you just got to know voted for president?”

None of the students had an answer. It hadn’t come up in their conversations and they didn’t know I had privately asked each person who they’d voted for.

So, I let a minute pass and told them.

“Nearly every one of them voted for Trump.”

My students looked stunned, at first. But then a recognition crossed their faces.

We were only a few days into a new course I had developed with Harvard’s Institute of Politics, called the Main Street Project, where students are immersed in small-town America. Even though these kids had almost all been raised in the United States, our journey sometimes felt like an anthropology course, as though they were seeing the rest of the country for the first time. And this was their opening lesson.

Too many kids in college these days, particularly attending one of the Ivies, have little exposure to rural America, so-called “flyover country”. The only thing they know about the people living there is what they've been told in their classes or by the media, and just about everything they've been told is wrong. But they won't know that unless they experience small town America first hand.

The Main Street Project is but one small step to correcting the many misconceptions people have about small town America.

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While the idea of renewable energy sounds great and billions have been spent on promoting and building renewables, the actual fraction of power that comes from those sources really hasn't grown all that much.

I could dig deep on why this is so (as I have done in the past), but a lot of it still boils down to the cost of renewable energy being very high, even with government subsidies. The rest deals with dispatchability, meaning they generally cannot supply power on demand, they are highly susceptible to weather conditions, and they take up a lot of land area compared to the more traditional coal, oil, natural gas, and nuclear power plants.

Until those other issues are solved, renewables aren't really a viable alternative to the other sources of power.

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There's nothing I can add to this. Nothing at all.

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Yeah, this worked out so well the last time that they decided to try it again.

The Left has called for a boycott of Chick-fil-A because the corporate owners don't support gay marriage.

In case you don't remember, the last time the Left called for a boycott of this restaurant chain, just the opposite occurred – a buycott. Chick-fil-A saw more customers coming through its doors and buying their chicken sandwiches than before the announced boycott. How much do you want to it will have a similar effect this time as well?

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People complain about how bad the air pollution is here in the US. Most of those making that claim weren't alive in the 60's and early 70's when both the air and water were quite polluted. Since then we have cleaned up the air and water to the point were much of the pollution can be measured in parts per billion or parts per trillion, not parts per thousand or parts per million. In fact, a lot of the air pollution to which we are exposed is not generated here but comes from overseas, specifically China. Yet we have people who fervently believe that we must be punished for the pollution caused by other countries, hence their support of things like the old Kyoto Protocols and the Paris Accord, neither of which really did anything other than demand a lot of money from the US.

But do we hear much about the horrendous air pollution in places like China or India? Of course not.

One tends, as a matter of course, to inveigh against pollution in China. The world has never seen a quicker leap into industrialization than what has happened in China over the past four decades. But, we also know that industrialization is the enemy of the pristine purity of nature. And we are well aware of the fact that China sports an authoritarian government, one that keeps its hold on power by poisoning its people.

We keep those facts and beliefs firmly in mind when we examine the state of today’s largest democracy. That would be India. How is democratic India doing with air pollution? We note the said pollution is not the same as the greenhouse gases that our environmentalists hate so much. Those latter include large quantities of carbon dioxide, aka, plant food. Pollution in India is of another order.

Anyway, India is not doing so well on the pollution scoreboard. If you think that toxic masculinity is a problem, wait until you get a whiff of toxic smog.

As the saying goes, Read The Whole Thing.

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the roar of motorcycle engines are fading away until next year, the vendors are counting cash stuffing their cash register drawers, and where peace and quite is returning even if it is on a Monday.