4/22/2018

Thoughts On A Sunday

It appears spring has arrived (at least temporarily as I still don't trust Mother Nature), with temps in the 50's here in central New Hampshire. There is no freezing rain, snow, or sleet in the forecast over the next few days, so it's looking promising. A good portion of the ice covering Lake Winnipesaukee has melted or broken up, though a considerable amount of ice can still be seen along the northern side of the lake.

Who knows, I might still be able to launch The Boat during the first weekend of May after all...but I'm not holding my breath.

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Reading and hearing reports on TV about the continuing demonstrations and walkouts by high school students demanding action in regards to gun violence, I see the focus is still on the wrong aspect of the issue. They are focusing on guns, not violence. The 'new' laws and regulations they propose aren't new at all. They already exist, but are being poorly enforced. A complete ban on guns would be unconstitutional (see Heller vs District of Columbia). Both school and law enforcement officials have ignored warnings about people who everyone knows will at some point go on a rampage, whether they use guns, knives, or explosives.

In all of this, people have been focusing on the instruments of violence, not the violence itself. Until they do, the problem will not be solved. Disarming law abiding citizens because of the actions of an infinitesimal portion of the population won't solve the problem. If anything, it will make it worse because then no one will be able to defend themselves against the criminal or the violent mentally ill who will ignore the law.

Treat the cause, not the symptoms. It's no different than treating any disease (violence is a disease). If you only treat the symptoms, the disease itself will continue to do its damage.

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I have long had a problem with the claim that renewable energy sources can meet all of our electrical needs. First, as an engineer I understand the differences between the performance claims and the actual performance of a system or systems, particularly for something like solar or wind energy. (I deal with electronics, optics, and laser systems on a day to day basis, so I am naturally skeptical when claims about some miraculous new system are announced.)

I think the problem with a vast majority of people who are not in any way involved with the power industry is that they have absolutely no understanding of how our electrical grid and generation systems work, how they are managed, and the delicate balance that must be maintained 24/7/365 in order to keep the system from failing. They also have little appreciation for just how much power it takes to run modern technological civilization, covering everything from the food production systems to telecommunications to air transport systems, and so on.

It is this lack of understanding that those who push the meme that “renewables can meet 100% of our electrical needs” exploit. They push the positives – free energy - while totally ignoring the negatives such as the scope of what would be needed to replace all of our conventional means of generating electricity and the actual costs of doing so. Those types of systems take up incredible amounts of land to even come close to generating the power that a coal, natural gas, or nuclear plant presently generate. What effect will all of those arrays of solar panels and wind turbines have on the local environment? How much wildlife habitat will be destroyed in order to put in acres and acres of solar panels? How much avian wildlife will be killed by wind turbine blades and how much of a negative effect will be created by the known effects of infrasound also generated by wind turbines? It seems no one really wants to discuss the environmental downsides, some of which are well known and well documented.

They also purposely ignore just how difficult it will become to keep the aforementioned 'delicate balance' if we switch to renewables so our electrical grid doesn't crash. The concerns are pushed aside with claims that it's only a problem for the skeptics and that somehow when it comes to actually making the switch that the problems will magically fix themselves or worse, won't ever be a problem. The issue is the stability of those renewable sources which are inherently unstable as well as their lack of what is called dispatchability. (This refers to the ability of a grid operator to 'dispatch' generating capacity as the electrical demand rises and falls. Renewables are not considered dispatchable because they cannot be throttled up and down like natural gas plants, and to a limited extent, coal or nuclear plants. The amount of electricity they generate changes with the weather conditions and from minute to minute. Solar is limited to daylight hours and wind turbines to when the wind is blowing. Of the two, only wind might be able to generate power all through a 24 hour period, and even then only every now and then. Renewables aren't consistent. They aren't stable. They aren't capable of providing the power we need that other power technologies can handle readily.

100 percent renewable energy is a pipe-dream.

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I have to wonder what will happen when Special Counsel Mueller's investigation concludes there was no collusion by the Trump team with Russia? I can think of a couple of different scenarios, neither of which is pretty.

One possible scenarios: After the tearing of hair and rending of clothing by Democrats who were so sure that there would be something that could be used to impeach Trump, there would be calls for a follow on investigation of the Mueller investigation to see if there was collusion with the Russians by Robert Mueller.

Another: Most of the people in the US will see it for what it was – a nothingburger – and will hand the Democrats a sound shellacking in the midterm elections for wasting their time and our tax dollars on what was nothing more than a combination witch hunt/fishing expedition.

One definite scenario: An MSM meltdown and violent Antifa demonstrations that will further damage an already heavily damaged Democrat party.

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I think you will have noticed that I have not included any links in my usual TOAS post today. This was intentional, a throwback to some of my earlier days where I provided my opinions on matters that caught my interest or bothered me in some way. Just linking to others' posts and throwing my 3¢ worth in was a lazy way out. It didn't really take a lot of thought and I realized that I wasn't always expressing my full thoughts on a matter.

Looking at Disqus comments I've made on other blog posts or articles made me realize I was doing a far better job there than here, something that proved to me that I've fallen down on the job. (No. I am not going to reveal my Disqus name. That's for me to know and for you to figure out for yourselves.)

I figured I'd try this little experiment and go back to some of my blogging roots if for no other reason as to shake me loose from this lazy habit I've fallen into.

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the ice is finally melting away, the boat will soon be out of storage, and where we're not hearing the furnace running every 5 minutes.

4/15/2018

Thoughts On A Sunday

Winter has returned to New Hampshire with a vengeance. Snow, freezing rain, and sleet descended upon us overnight, with the freezing rain and sleet being the most 'plentiful' precipitation so far. The Weather GuysTM have said that we can expect up to a quarter inch of ice to accumulate between this evening and tomorrow morning. That will be on top of what has already fallen. The temps will be below freezing for the next 24 hours or so, which means they will be between 25°F and 30°F below normal for this time of year.

BeezleBub had to head out to the local hardware store to pick up some ice melt (assuming he could find any, which he did, surprisingly). It's not something we usually have to buy this time of year.

One of the things this return to winter will affect is the date of Ice Out on Lake Winnipesaukee, the date where enough of the ice has melted that will allow the M/S Mount Washington cruise ship to make all 5 ports of call around the lake. This also means that it will delay the date that I will launch the Official Weekend Pundit Lake Winnipesaukee Runabout – aka The Boat – because the chances are the water will still be too 'chunky', meaning there will still be ice floating on the lake here and there.

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So, does someone want to tell me about global warming again?

It seems that there are blizzard warnings posted for six states...in mid-April. There are also Winter Storm Warnings in eleven other states.

As you can see from the initial part of my post above, we're seeing the non-effects of global warming here in New Hampshire as well.

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First, it was Bush Derangement Syndrome. Then it was Palin Derangement Syndrome, followed by Trump Derangement Syndrome.

Now, it's Chik-Fil-A Derangement Syndrome, and it's hitting it's hitting New York City hard.

Really? Somehow the appearance of Chik-Fil-A in New York is the sign of the Apocalypse? Boy, the Left's standards as what signals the coming of The End has fallen to a new low.

These folks need to get on meds, seriously. How can so many deranged people be allowed to roam the streets in America?

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I have to agree with Matt Walsh on this in its entirety: If your sex life is none of our business, stop demanding that we celebrate it and fund it.

Many members of the LGBTQetc community have no desire to 'throw' their lifestyles in out faces. Unfortunately just enough of them do, and then they wonder why people are sick and tired of hearing about it. No one seems to go out of their way to throw heterosexual lifestyles in their faces to the level that the LGBTQ extremists do (sometimes to an extreme).

Here's a message to those folks: No one gives a s**t, nor should they.

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CBS reports that voters could decide whether or not to split California into three states.

On the surface it sounds like a good idea. But once you look at the details you realize those three new states would be dominated by the Progressive cities so many on Red California want to get away from; Northern California would be controlled by San Francisco and Silicon Valley, with most of the counties being affected already vehemently against what those areas have already done to them. California would be the coastal area between Monterey and Los Angeles, and the Southern California would be the rest of the counties to the east. The way the new state lines would be drawn will still give Democrats a large majority in each state and would lead to four new Democrat senators. That would leave those who already suffer from the abuses of the Democrat party no relief and leave them no better off than they were before. That isn't a solution, but more of a problem that could lead to bigger problems down the road, like armed resistance by the disenfranchised.

If those line were redrawn to make the coastal areas from San Francisco to LA one state, northern California counties another state, and San Diego and the eastern counties the third state, then there would be something to support. But if the results of the split are what have presently proposed, then all that's being created are three copies of the insanity that already dominates California.

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Well worth the read: What White Privilege lessons did to my high school.

It certainly didn't help things, didn't create cohesiveness amongst the students, and in fact probably made things more divisive for no other reason than to make sure the Left controlled the narrative.

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Is it time to reform the Renewable Fuel Standard? Yes, without a doubt because the RFS as it stands is causing more problems than it's solving.

The RFS was set when demand for gasoline was increasing annually. Today just the opposite is taki9ng place. But the amount of ethanol that must be used according to the mandate is now outstripping the gasoline supply. Some have suggested increasing the blend of ethanol from 10% to 15% would solve the problem, but it creates a worse set of problems in return, specifically voiding of vehicle warranties and requiring retrofitting every single gasoline storage facility and gas station in the nation.

The other issue: ethanol was seen as a why of replacing foreign oil with a renewable source. However the demand for foreign oil can now be met with domestic sources and ethanol has a negative energy return, meaning it can take more energy to produce than it delivers.

That's not how any of that was supposed to work.

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where winter refuses to release its grip, ice still covers the lake, and where dreams of boating will have to be put off for a while longer.AC

4/08/2018

Thoughts On A Sunday

At least Sunday started sunny and bright, unlike Saturday which had brought clouds and snow. At least all of the snow had melted by the end of the day.

Work continues on getting The Manse ready to put on the market, with the interior painting expected to be finished by the end of this coming week. We're still shoveling out the basement, though I'd say that 90% of the stuff we needed to get rid of has been separated from the stuff we're keeping. Hopefully we'll be seeing all of the stuff that we need to get rid of taken off to the dump some time over the next two weeks.

It is easy to forget just how daunting it can be to get a home ready for sale.

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It's looking to be a real battle for the upcoming elections in November, with both Congressional districts looking to have close races. So far no one who has announced their candidacy is showing as a favorite, even the lone incumbent in the Second NH Congressional district.

This is going to be a long slog to November.

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Why does the Left get a pass on anti-semitism?

Could it be because the modern Left, going back the the time of Lenin, have always hated the Jews? And since the present day Left has its own propaganda wing, that being a good portion of the MSM, they choose to ignore something that would inflame those of us who are not Leftists?

So, let's refresh our memories, shall we?

The Left is anti-semetic.

The Left is racist because we see how hard they exercise their soft racism of low expectations of minorities and they refuse to see the racism pointed towards whites by other races that “can't possibly be racist”.

The Left is intolerant of anyone who isn't them despite their claims to the contrary.

The Left despises actual diversity because if it really existed it would weaken them.

The Left really likes the idea of totalitarian states (we see how much they praise them on a regular basis) because it means they would be able to run everyone else's lives...even though they can't seem to run their own.

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Stepping back a little bit, Legal Insurrection brings up the coming mid-term elections and wonders whether it will be a Big Blue Wave or a Big Blue Bust.

The Democrats seem to think they have the mid-terms all sowed up. However, we must consider some of the things they have stated that they will do if the take the House and the Senate.

One of the first things: reverse the tax cuts and start stealing more of our money from our wallets.

The next thing: Impeach Trump. (It doesn't matter that they have no grounds for impeachment despite what the MSM has been trying to sell us.) Some of them seem to think that if Trump falls then Hillary will somehow become president. I have two words for them: President Pence.

After that I have no doubt they will do their best to cripple the American economy again, much as they did when they took Congress during Dubya's last two years in office and then made it even worse once their 'Savior' was elected.

One has to wonder if their belief is on founded in fact or whether they're just wishing real hard.

I guess we'll find out in six months.

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As the saying goes, karma is a bitch!

I'm going to guess the guy didn't get the job.

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Steve MacDonald has come up with a great for a new TV reality show, one I can get behind totally. In fact, I'd be willing to kick in some money to help make it happen. Maybe he should start a Kickstartr or GoFundMe page to get the ball rolling.

I bet that if he did, he'd get millions of dollars to help fund it.

If nothing else I would want to watch the faces of the participants when they finally realize that they are living the 'dream' they have clamored for and it turns out their dream is really Hell.

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And for a second dip in the GraniteGrok pond, here's a heartwarming post by Skip that made me smile.

I think I'm going to have to visit Harris County, Georgia and meet the sheriff. He sounds like my kind of guy.

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Do you know what is even more rare than Bigfoot sightings? Give up yet?

Proof that employers are paying women for the same jobs as men.

Too many people take the aggregate pay of men and women and point to it as proof that women are being paid less. It's an old trick and one that does not reflect reality.

One has to look at the pay by the job. There are many jobs that women simply will not or cannot do that men do. Many of those jobs are very dangerous and men get paid a lot of money to do them. Men also tend to work a lot more overtime which skews the wages between men and women.

It's time to put that old canard to rest.

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Reading the news from the UK, it looks like the folks pushing for 'knife control' are using the same old arguments that the gun-grabbers here in the US have been using to take away our guns.

The UK has tight restrictions on gun ownership. Everyone thought that would end the senseless slaughter. It didn't. Now more murders and attacks are being committed with knives. So the answer is to make otherwise law-abiding citizens give up their knives?

Again, these idiots are missing the point. It isn't about gun violence or knife violence. It's about violence., something they aren't addressing. Solve the violence problem and the other problems go away. But instead they are addressing the tools used to commit acts of violence which, in and of themselves, are inanimate objects rather than the miscreants committing those acts of violence.

Is it any wonder that they're failing?

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where warm weather might return later in the week, the ice on the lake is getting thinner, and where we've told our local boat shop to get our boat ready for the first week of May.

4/01/2018

Thoughts On A Sunday

It's Easter Sunday, and all is quiet here in central New Hampshire. Family will be gathering early this afternoon to partake in Easter Dinner.

The weather has been cooperative for the most part. While it will be in the lower 50's today, a still breeze will make it feel a bit cooler. At least we didn't have to deal with an Easter snowstorm like so many through parts of the Midwest.

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This will be a somewhat abbreviated TOAS as I will be spending most of the day with other members of the WP clan gathering at the WP Mom's.

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You know the whole “white privilege” meme has come close to reaching maximum stupid when an “outdoor expedition that's part of [a college's] freshman orientation...recently came under fire from one student critic who accused them of perpetuating “white privilege” and “prehistoric policies regarding gender.” ”

The college in question, Bates College in Maine, probably one of the whitest parts of the US, has been been accused by Justin Geddes, an editor at the college newspaper, of perpetuating white privilege as part of its freshman orientation program.

Writing in The Student, Geddes states that he knows many people who have “AESOP horror stories,” though he provides no specific examples. He claims that hiking trips organized by the group are “made entirely of microagressions,” and that he has heard of “queer first-years” who end up “surrounded by straight people making eyes at each other across canoes.”

“It’s easy to feel isolated and lost when you’re surrounded by people with nothing in common with you on a trip that you signed up for because you had to,” Geddes added, writing elsewhere that “to have an identity dissociated from a ‘hip,’ outdoorsy norm rooted in a Northeastern white understanding of self seems almost inconceivable by Bates’ orientation standards.”

Of course Geddes, in typical leftist media fashion, has performed a hit-and-run accusation with absolutely no corroborating evidence or quotes from some of these 'victimized/traumatized' “queer first-years”. Then again, isn't that their modus operandi today? All that's required is an accusation in order to be guilty. No proof or evidence required.

Some folks need to get help. Geddes is one of them.

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I am in total agreement with Gay Patriot on this one – I am so tired of the non-stop whining!

LGGBDTTTIQQAAPP Left activists continue their perpetual tantrum, today’s ‘worst injustice ever suffered by any people in history’ is because the 2020 Census might not include questions about sexual orientation.

FFS, what business is it of the Government’s anyway?

Indeed. The increasing hyperbole only ends up marginalizing any actual grievances they may have, if for no other reason that people will stop paying attention to their braying at all of the “injustices” that are anything but.

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Oh, this will win over voters to the Democrat Party!

It appears that New Mexico's Secretary of State believe voters are “too stupid to fill out ballots.”

I kid you not.

[Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse] Oliver argues picking the candidates voters want is "long and complicated," and therefore they need to be told who to vote for based on party. (emphasis mine)

She said having voters choose every candidate they are voting for is "voter suppression."

"Simply put: the decision to end straight ticket voting in New Mexico was a cynical partisan attempt to make it more difficult for New Mexicans to vote," Oliver said.

Oliver also claims voting is too difficult, unless voters can just check the "Democrat" box.

So what she's saying is that Democrat voters are too stupid to vote? They “need to be told who to vote for”. Does she realize she's implying Republican in New Mexico voters don't need that crutch because they're smarter than the Democrats in New Mexico? Probably not. She probably just wants to make it easier for ineligible voters to elect Democrats, allowing them to make a single check mark, deposit their ballots, and then move on the next polling place to repeat the process. (Yes, I am being sarcastic...maybe. Or not.)

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The claim is made again and again that climate change is humanity's biggest threat. But so far no one, and I mean no one has proven a warmer climate is a problem. We have plenty of proof that a colder climate is a big threat, and it seems the 'warmists' are all for the return of another ice age and are doing everything they can to make sure it happens.

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And that's the abbreviated news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where colder than normal end-of-March/beginning of April temperatures haven't dampened thoughts of the coming boating season, where the snow is rapidly disappearing despite some of the cooler temps, and where we are celebrating His resurrection.