Scary Thought Of The Day

Seen over at the comments at Knuckledraggin comes this scary thought of the day:

Every time you say this year's name, it reminds you that 2020 won.

Next year? That's 2020, too.

It. Is. Never. Going. To. End.


Thoughts On A Sunday

We had a lot of warm spring weather this past week, ending with a number of thunderstorms rolling through Friday afternoon.

Driving around portions of Lake Winnipesaukee yesterday while running some of my weekend chores/errands I saw that large portions of the lake were now ice free. I figure the heavy rain and the high winds helped break up the thinner sheets of ice. Much of the ice seen from The Gulch and along the southern shore had been a darkening blue as of Thursday afternoon. Most of that ice is now gone.

The cove where the Official Weekend Pundit Lake Winnipesaukee Runabout docks during the boating season is mostly ice free, with a sheet of mushy ice along one side of the cove, pushed there by the winds.

Last week I figured Ice Out would be called on April 12th. I’m beginning to think it’s going to happen a lot earlier than that.


It seems Nancy Pelosi is bound and determined to foment the Second Civil War.

First with the execrable HR 1, and then with her move to unseat a duly elected Representative from Iowa from the House because she only won by 6 votes. I guess that means that even if a Republican wins, it only counts as a win if the Republican wins by a huge margin...and even then only temporarily until the Speaker can invalidate the election results by decree.

Every time I think Pelosi couldn’t be a bigger scumbag than she already is, she proves me wrong.

She needs to go before she destroys what’s left of our Republic and turns it into a Leftist dictatorship. She has already shown she has no respect for the law, the US Constitution, or the American people, at least not those who are not part of the Progressive ‘elite’. The rest of the people are just deplorables to be abused, ignored, or both.


Yeah, I see this, but I have a different take on it than Skip.

Skip writes:

The problem isn’t the number of guns in the US (estimated now at around 400 million) but the culture of those that have them. Culture counts and a culture that doesn’t value life has chart results like this. If you need any more proof, look at the stats in Chicago after almost every weekend.

And that Culture is? Gangbangers. Get rid of them (which Chicago assiduously refuses to do), and the chart goes flat.

Take away the top 5-10 counties in America where gun CRIME (not violence, CRIME) is tops, the chart goes flat.

But we can thank Progressives for moving the Overton Window to the left and removing Societal norms, like marriage, like respect, like Judeo-Christian values, like valuing Private Property Rights, like behavior, and all the other bricks that used to make up the Wall of Society.

And this is what we’re left with – chaos. For we Normals, a disaster. For Progressives wishing to both remake us AND remake our Society, a manmade opportunity not to waste.

The culture the Progressives have in mind is not a new one by any means, their protestations notwithstanding. They want a culture that is the recreation of a society that vanished 30 years ago, a society of misery and terror, of show trials, of the brutal repression of human rights, with a nomenklatura that saw themselves as an elite that tried its best to separate themselves from the proletariat, a society that was so dysfunctional its economy was wholly dependent upon its greatest adversary’s largess, a society that poisoned its own environment “for the Glory of the State”, a society that was so repressive that it killed the souls of so many of its people that it finally collapsed because no one believed anything its rulers said anymore.

They want to recreate the old Soviet Union, pine to replace it with their own version, because they will do it better. Of course they won’t because they will make the same mistakes, will ignore the same factors that destroyed the previous version of their Socialist ‘Utopia’, and will suffer the same fate. Only millions more people will be dead and they will have killed them, either directly or indirectly through neglect. That is what they want for us...because they know better.

Thanks, but no thanks.


By way of Chris Muir comes this, the New Declaration of Independence:

When in the Course of human events which impelled our Founding Fathers to form a new Nation, conceived in Liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created free and equal and endowed by their Creator with the inalienable Rights to Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness, they determined to declare the reasons which inspired them to such a noble cause.

Because we hold to these same self-evident truths, we seek to adhere to these same timeless principles and to conduct our lives in a way which shows ourselves worthy of the precious legacy which has been handed down to us by such brave and honorable men.

WE are the worthy posterity of our noble Founding Fathers.

WE are the ones who have kept their Covenant and Constitution.

WE are the ones who recognize and revere the God of nature who has blessed us with the fruits of their labor.

All we have ever required of our fellow countrymen is to respect our Right to Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness and, in turn, we have respected theirs.

Now our endowed Rights have been stolen by those especially entrusted for their protection.

Those who were created equal to us now think they have been elevated above us merely due to the office they have acquired solely through our good graces.

The Governments which have been instituted among us exclusively for the protection of our Rights, have become destructive of those very ends.

Our Safety and Happiness have been abused and usurped.

The principles upon which our Country was established are now distorted and derided, if they are remembered at all. As all of history shows, the pursuit of such a Government is designed to reduce us to absolute despotism.

Because we understand it is no light thing to alter, abolish or institute new Government, for far too long we have tried to content ourselves while evils were sufferable. But now there is no rule of law and our patience is viewed by our abusers only as consent to more abuse.

It is strongly suggested you Read The Whole Thing, particularly before it disappears.


And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the rains are heavy, the winds are getting heavier, and where the ice on the lake will soon be gone.


The Freedom Of Speech Is Becoming "You Are Free to Speak Only If You Agree With Us"

I have been watching Pat Condell’s videos for some time. While his point of view is quite often that of a UK citizen cover subjects of import to the UK, the points he brings up quite often apply equally to the US, Canada, and a whole host of other western nations.

His latest diatribe covers the constant erosion of the freedom of speech, where a small minority can control the content of speech by declaring anything they disagree with, anything they don’t like, or anything that makes them feel uncomfortable as “hate speech”. Such oversight stifles the free exchange of differing ideas, something every healthy society needs. In turn, censoring differing speech also stifles the society, something that is never good.

While Pat believes the US First Amendment will protect the free speech of those of us in the US, he is wrong. There are those among us who have been working hard to make the First Amendment moot. They have been trying to get their fellow travelers to push the idea that “hate speech” is not constitutionally protected. One example: they have tried to use the “Yelling ‘Fire!’ in a theater is not protected by the First Amendment” argument as if it is somehow germane to the discussion. I have responded “But there is a fire in the theater...and you set it,” to more than one woke snowflake who would like to control every aspect of our speech to prevent any ‘uncomfortable’ speech. Eliminating any speech they don’t like is their goal and the First Amendment be damned.

Think it won’t happen here?

It already is, with heavy censorship of posting to places like Twitter and Facebook, and the actions taken by those same media platforms, backed up by Amazon/AWS, Google, and Apple deplatforming and demonetizing websites, apps, and YouTube channels of those they disagree with. Their terms of service have been changed to the point that any speech used that their anonymous and ignorant censors deem offensive can be removed.

An example of this I came across personally: Someone writing a comment to a post about cats and the discussion was comparing the size and characteristics of Savannah and Maine Coon cats. The comment was removed “due to the use of offensive language”. The ‘nanny algorithm’ the censors used apparently didn’t like the name of the Maine cat breed, seeing part of the breed name as being racist in nature. Even an appeal to the human censors elicited a “continued use of the offensive term could result in termination of offending account” response.

How. Effin’. Stupid.

Now apply that to everyday speech. Think it won’t happen? It has already started. On YouTube you find that some YouTubers can’t mention terms like ‘feminism’, ‘sex’, ‘sexism’, and ‘MGTOW’ just to name a few, without YouTube algorithms/human censors tagging/removing their videos. Not all YouTubers, just some. It has also led to YouTube demonitizing their channels, while leaving others employing same language and terms untouched. The difference as best I can tell? Those allowed to keep using the questionable language appear to be the ‘correct’ kind of YouTuber.

Another place we see this, and it is nowhere near as subtle, is the halls of academia. Faculty, students, and guest speakers are silenced on campuses because many of the aforementioned woke snowflakes are so offended (or so triggered) they can’t allow those with differing viewpoints to speak. They label those differing opinions as “hate speech” and will do anything they can to stifle it. It has gone as far as physical attacks to prevent those they see as ‘whateverists’ from speaking.

It is as Pat described in his video – the claims that the speech they disagree with is “hate speech” is a lie, a pernicious lie. It’s only purpose is to silence those with differing opinions, period. Silencing free speech doesn’t make things better. It makes things worse. It always makes things worse.


Two Accomplishments Of The Biden Presidency...So Far

Shamelessly stolen from Instapundit:

Harsh...but fair.

And these are just the latest. One of his first accomplishments was when he made tens of thousands of good paying union jobs disappear with a stroke of the pen. (Keystone XL pipeline cancellation.)


Real Common Sense Gun Legislation

This post was inspired by a comment made in an Instapundit post dealing with the shooting in Boulder, Colorado. One comment dealt with “Every Democrat-elected NPC has already has rushed to a microphone to urge “common sense” gun legislation.” This response to the comment offered some truly “common sense” gun legislation.

Hmm. Common sense gun legislation. Let's see.

How about this?

"Every able-bodied adult not otherwise restricted by law (convicted felons and those under DV Restraining Orders) shall be required to carry a loaded firearm when out in public. Accommodation will be made for religious belief exemptions. Those who cannot afford firearms or ammo will report to their nearest police station where loaner weapons and ammo can be signed out for not more than 4 days. Loaner periods can be extended but the requests must be made in person and cannot exceed 28 days. Loaner weapons and ammo will be returned to the PD in the same condition as they were issued. The cost of any loaner ammunition expended shall be reimbursed to the PD within 90 days of use."

Will that do?

It certainly makes more sense to me than the “common sense” gun legislation that disarms law-abiding citizens but leaves armed criminals armed.

All such legislation has ever done is increase the incidence of gun violence. Our self-anointed ‘betters’ always focus on the wrong word in the phrase “gun violence”, that word being “gun” rather than “violence”. Eliminate the violence and the gun problem goes away. ‘Eliminate’ the gun and the violence problem is still there…and will get worse.


Thoughts On A Sunday

Spring is finally here, at least according to the calendar. We’ve certainly had spring weather, seeing temps in the mid 50’s yesterday and low 60’s today. The ice on the lake is getting thinner and I’ve seen a lot of bobhouses being pulled off the lake over the past 2 days. A few more days of this kind of weather and some wind would help the ice start breaking up.

We’ll be waiting for Ice Out (defined as when the M/S Mount Washington ship can make all five ports of call on Lake Winnipesaukee). This means boating season won’t be too far behind.

There is an annual Ice Out contest, calling for the date and time when Ice Out is declared. I’ve picked 1PM on April 12th. Now only time will tell.


Is South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem being condemned unfairly for her opposition to South Dakota House Bill 1217 as it was passed by the legislature? The bill deals with banning transgendered athletes from competing in sports on teams that do not match their biological gender, i.e. transgirls competing on girls’ teams. The bill is meant to protect women’s sports, but as passed it has some problems and unintended consequences that will do more harm than good, something Governor Noem wants corrected before she signs it. As she posted to her MeWe page:

I believe that boys should play boys’ sports, and girls should play girls’ sports. I'm returning House Bill 1217 with the following recommendations as to STYLE and FORM.

As the legislative findings in the original version of the bill set out, “[w]ith respect to biological sex, one is either male or female[,]” and “[p]hysiological differences between males and females include ‘those most important for success in sport: categorically different strength, speed, and endurance.’”

That is why House Bill 1217 properly provides that females should have opportunities to play youth sports on teams comprised of females and against teams of females. Unfortunately, as I have studied this legislation and conferred with legal experts over the past several days, I have become concerned that this bill’s vague and overly broad language could have significant unintended consequences.

(I do not have the direct link to the Governor’s MeWe page, but the quote above came by way of a screenshot provided by a commenter linked above the quote, so take it as such. - ed.)

The linked quote includes more information from the Governor regarding the changes she states need to be made.

Better the bill be fixed beforehand rather than scrambling later to deal with the unintended consequences.


Registration for Covid vaccinations for my demographic group (Misanthropic and Surly Curmudgeons Above the Age of 50) opens tomorrow in New Hampshire.

I will be registering, but I will admit I will be looking for vaccination sites that will be offering the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. There are a couple of reasons for my decision which include that it is a single dose vaccine (so I only have to make one appointment, not two) and that its creation and manufacture uses a process that is very similar to that used for making flu vaccines rather than one that employs genetic engineering/gene therapy. (I choose not to be a test subject for a vaccine that makes use of mRNA to create immunity.) One has to remember these vaccines have not undergone the full testing suite usually required by the FDA. They received emergency authorization for use.

Does that make me a conspiracy theorist? No. I don’t believe Bill Gates is using the Pfizer/Moderna vaccines to insert chips into the populace to track and control the population. We all know it’s really the CIA and the Illuminati! /s

My decision is based upon my own research, a medical background (I was a EMT/Paramedic for over 15 years), I have old friends who are medical professionals (including one who is an epidemiologist), and an ingrained distrust of an ‘authority’ that keeps changing its mind (sometimes on a daily basis) about what is and is not effective regarding Covid-19 precautions and treatments.


It seems Senator Rand Paul can’t catch a break.

First, a little over three and a half years ago he’s assaulted by a neighbor while mowing his lawn, the assault breaking five of his ribs.

Now he has a self-righteous Karen harassing him about not wearing a mask while he’s working out on a treadmill at a gym.

Senator Paul was fully vaccinated and as such, wearing a mask is merely a psychological sop to someone else that provides no additional protection. The Karen harangued a physician with more knowledge about infectious diseases, the efficacy of vaccines and precautions like masks and washing one’s hands than she could ever know. I guess Karens have got to Karen.

I know that two of our local gyms require masks when moving from one workout station to another and when entering or leaving the gym. They do not require them while actually exercising.


Jo Nova has hit it on the head: The Chinese have nothing but scorn for our self-hating ‘woke’ upper-class.

That’s OK. Most of us in the US also have nothing but scorn for those same scumbags.

The Chinese know our leaders well. In fact, they have a name for our self-hating professional class.

They call them “baizuo.” The rough translation from Mandarin is “White liberal,” and it is definitely not a compliment. Chinese state media describes baizou as people who, “only care about topics such as immigration, minorities, LGBT and the environment, who have no sense of real problems in the real world, who only advocate for peace and equality to satisfy their own feelings of moral superiority, and who are so obsessed with political correctness that they tolerate backward Islamic values for the sake of multiculturalism.”

As Chinese state media notes, “former US [sic] President Obama was considered an advocate of baizuo ideology.”

So is “German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her decision to welcome more than one million third-world [sic] immigrants to Europe.”

Other observations about baizuo, as reported by Chinese state media, include the fact that they “advocate inclusiveness and anti-discrimination but cannot tolerate different opinions.” Baizuo’s political opinions are “so shallow that they tend to maintain social equality by embracing ideologies that run against the basic concept of equality.”

According to one scholar from Peking University, “[B]aizuo are phony and hypocritical and will make the situation in the West go from bad to worse.” And so on.

It is rare I would agree with something from official Chinese state media, but in this one case I have to agree with their assessment of our ‘betters’. It seems everything they do makes things worse for everyone, including themselves. They won’t recognize they are doing that because they are too busy congratulating themselves and virtue signaling for having “done something” about a problem, real or imagined. However, that ‘something’ usually comes back to bite them, too, but by then it’s too late to undo it. So what do they do?

They double down on stupid.

They “do something” that’s worse than the original ‘something’ they did, and perpetuate the cycle. Things get worse, they get crazier, and all of us suffer for it.

This is something we need to stop, and the sooner the better for everyone, even our ‘betters’.


And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where spring has arrived in earnest, the ice on the lakes is melting away, and we’re enjoying the weather...even if it’s on a Monday.


It's Time To Address "Offense Culture"

As is my habit, I tend to watch TED Talks and TEDx Talks on YouTube. These talks, each around 20 to 30 minutes in length, can be quite informative. They cover a wide range of subjects from cosmology to suicide to families to math to social issues, past and present. I don’t always agree with what the presenters say, and when that is the case the disagreement is often a matter of degree, not magnitude. (Not that there haven’t been those occasions where the presenter and I have diametrically opposed views. Even then, I usually learn something new.)

I was perusing a TEDx Talk this morning and came across this one hosted by Jess Butcher, MBE and her guest, Claire Fox. The subject of Claire’s talk – How Offence Culture Stifles Progress.

She mentions the pervasiveness of what she calls the “Snowflake Generation”, those who are offended by speech that presents ideas with which they disagree. This is done not to foster debate and discussion about the ‘offensive’ idea, but to stifle it in its entirety and to silence those who caused the ‘offense’. They demand safe spaces, not to protect them from some physical threat, but to shield them from offensive subjects.

How is it so many, more specifically college students, have become so psychologically fragile they cannot ponder the idea of debating subjects they disagree with without feeling anxious, nauseous, or ‘fainting away’? One does not treat such a malady by kowtowing to their demands to never be offended. All that does is feed their neurosis and make it worse. To hold the rest of the population hostage to their psychological fragility is madness in itself. Better to see they get the treatment they need to reduce, if not eliminate this fragility. Otherwise they will not make it out in the real world, as Claire stated in her talk.


Thoughts On A Sunday

We went from winter temps, to mid-spring temps, and back to winter temps in only four days – the upper 20’s to the 60’s and back to the lower 30’s. We enjoyed our preview of weather to come over the next few months, saw the last of the snow on roofs melt away and snowbanks shrink in size. The ice on the lakes also showed more openings in various places along the shorelines. The number of bob-houses on the ice has been shrinking as the ice has been getting thinner and should all be off the ice before April 1st. (Our state law requires them to be off by then or the owners can be fined because after that date it can be too dangerous to venture onto the ice to remove them.)

I spent the day yesterday traveling around the Big Lake with an old friend, catching up and making plans for a business venture. What better place and time to discuss the future than while traveling around on a nice day?


I was saddened to hear of the passing of ‘Marvelous’ Marvin Hagler, a boxing great, a gentleman, and a fellow New Hampshire resident.

I remember watching his fight against Tony Sibson at the Centrum in Worcester, Massachusetts when he pummeled him into submission in 6 rounds. As Sibson said after the fight, it was the first time he’d ever been hurt like that in a fight. Hagler’s win against Tommy Hearns was even more impressive, defeating Hearns in 3 rounds.


Just when I think things couldn’t get any weirder I am proven wrong.

The latest weirdness?

Adding details on pricing labels that inform consumers of the sex and skin color of the companies owners of the products being sold.

I’m sure they thought this was a great idea when they came up with it. No one will be as #Woke as us after adding details on our pricing labels...

The only products exempted from the scheme are white-owned businesses which are the same as labeling them, yes?

If one makes their purchasing decisions based solely upon the race/gender/LGBTQ status of those who own the company that made/provided the product and not upon the quality, cost, or efficacy of the product, that is their choice. But couldn’t that choice be seen as being based upon racism/sexism/whateverism and not upon the quality, price, or availability of the product regardless of the sex, race, or LGBTQ status of the manufacturer?

Somehow I doubt that observation will be brought up by our increasingly judgmental Progressive ‘betters’.

A few other questions:

So what’s next?

Tracking your purchase based on the race of the companies that own or operate them? The #Wokeistan equivalent of a social credit-system like the one in China?

Will banks cancel your credit card if you don’t buy a racially diverse selection of products? You’re buying too many products made by white men. You’ve been scheduled for mandatory sensitivity and diversity training.

But you weren’t even looking at the labels? Too bad.

Do you think it can’t happen? How many other things that we thought wouldn’t happen are now reality?


Daylight Savings Time has returned and once again people are asking why we even bother with the change. Frankly, it’s a pain in the butt, it’s disruptive, and changing between Standard and Daylight Savings serves no real purpose, at least for those of us living in the extreme eastern edges of each time zone. (It’s ironic that ‘Standard’ time lasts four months and one week while DST lasts seven months and three weeks. Which is really Standard Time?)

More than a few of us here in New Hampshire, Maine, and Massachusetts have expressed the desire to remain in Daylight Savings Time or to switch to the Atlantic Time Zone. We would much prefer to retain daylight at the end of the day considering we see sunset as early as 3:30PM during the depths of winter. For some of us that means we see no sunlight at all during the week, driving to and from work in the dark. I know I don’t like it.

Remaining on Eastern Daylight Time or switching to Atlantic Standard Time year round helps solve that problem, at least here in the Tri-State area. Some will argue that the kids going to school in the dark will be a problem, but it wasn’t a problem back in the 1974 when Congress passed a bill in 1973 keeping DST in effect for a full year due to the effects of the Arab Oil Embargo. However, this wasn’t the first time the US remained on DST year round.

The US also remained on DST from 1942 to 1945, also known as “War Time”, at the urging of President Franklin Roosevelt.

It’s time to reconsider the twice-a-year change. I know these guys would appreciate it:


And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the ice is getting thinner, the temperatures will be getting warmer, and where once again Monday will return to ruin everybody’s weekend.


Who Supports Violence For Political Goals?

Who is it who is increasingly believing violence in support of political goals is acceptable? Here’s a hint:

It’s not the so-called ‘Conservative Right-Wing Extremists/Nationalists/Whateverists’.

Despite what the DNC-MSM has been promoting over the past 4 years, it turns out that particular ‘group’ does not support the idea of violence to promote politics, according to a study by Stanford University and the University of Michigan.

...It asked people if they consider violence acceptable in achieving political goals.

- Among whites, 86.8% of moderates in 2016 said "not at all," meaning violence is never acceptable. This means 13.2% did think violence is sometimes okay.

- In 2020, the number of moderates who believe violence is "not at all" justified went down, meaning the number of moderates who believe violence is acceptable went up (14.2%).

- The number of "somewhat conservative" whites who believe political violence is never justified went six points down from 2016 to 2020. Only 5.8% now consider such violence acceptable.

- "Very conservative" white people were the least likely to approve of political violence, with only 4.2% in that category.

- "Somewhat liberal" whites had a slight decrease in people who tolerate political violence, while solidly "liberal" whites actually had more acceptance of violence – up to 17.2% in 2020 from 11.9% in 2016.

- "Very liberal" whites had the biggest change, with 33.5% believing political violence is sometimes justified compared to only 13.1% in 2018.

While this doesn’t automatically equate to people actually committing violence to support their political viewpoints, one does have to ask if it means they will actually support violence should it take place as long as it is done in order to push their political viewpoints. It’s scary that some groups are more willing to support political violence than they were four years ago.

It must also must be understood that just because someone does not support political violence doesn’t automatically mean they won’t defend themselves, their families, or their communities from those who have no compunction against committing acts of violence to force their political viewpoints on others.



Disqus Strikes Again

Are any of you out there using Disqus for commenting at various websites?

If so, I must ask if any if you have had issues with posting comments that are either immediately removed or ‘held’ for moderation? I know I have.

My most recent experience has proven to me the algorithm they use to ‘censor’ comments needs to be adjusted. The comment I posted that got removed by the electronic busybody?

I had a comment held for 'review' just yesterday. It was immediate which meant it was an algorithm that put it into that status and not a moderator. The comment had to do with two breeds of cats, Maine Coon Cats and Savannahs.

A follow-on comment was also removed immediately, and I followed up with:

I just tried responding to you and my comment was immediately removed. It concerned another comment I posted yesterday about two breeds of cats. I guess the algorithm doesn't like the cat breed from Maine.

It seems the Disqus algorithm doesn’t like the word “Coon” even though it is in relation to a breed of cats, specifically Maine Coon Cats. I guess it sees that word as racist or derogatory regardless of context. It isn’t, specifically when referring to a breed of cat. Or maybe the folks at Disqus just don’t like Maine Coon Cats.

For your information, ‘Coon’ in Maine Coon Cats refers to racoons and is not a racial slur. But try telling the algorithm that…or anyone on the Disqus staff. They don’t even have a contact e-mail address or link on their website, so filing complaints or asking questions not covered by their FAQ is impossible.


Small Town Democracy In Action

It was Town Meeting Day here in our little town.

It is low-level democracy in action where the townsfolk vote for town officials, spending measures (town and school budget, special expenditures - police cruisers, fire trucks, plow trucks, other equipment or items – and petitioned expenditures for non-government organizations, special events, and so on), changes to zoning ordinances or town ordinances and regulations, or approving union contracts for town or school employees.

In our case, this was the second part of our two-part town meeting process, that second part being actual voting. The first part was the deliberative session last month where interested townsfolk would meet to go over all of the various warrant articles that covered the topics mentioned early, debating them, and if deemed necessary, amending them. (I wish I could say the deliberative session was well-attended, but this year there was little in the way of controversial warrant articles, so we saw maybe 70 people in attendance and there was little discussion about the 20-some warrant articles. The session lasted less than a half hour.)

Today’s voting started at 7AM and lasted until 7PM. I certainly didn’t expect a large voter turnout like we saw back in November. We usually get about a sixth to a third of the town’s registered voters showing up for Town Meeting voting unless there’s a controversial issue or two that draws out a larger number of voters. Since this year’s warrants were rather benign, I figured we’d see the usual number of voters participating this year.

In general, this is the a case where direct democracy works. The people gather to decide how their town will spend their tax dollars, what changes will be made in how the town does things, and how/if any other items of import will be handled. It works because it is such a small version of democracy. Much bigger than that and it becomes less effective. It is also what I call “intermittent democracy” since it is exercised only once a year, not every day and not for every decision that needs to be made by the various town and school officials throughout the year.

The townsfolk have done their duty until next year. They have cast their ballots and decided what the town will be doing over the next 12 months. Then the process starts all over again, just as it should.


Thoughts On A Sunday

Just a fair warning: This week’s TOAS is going to be an abbreviated version as I have been busy most of the day. I spent some time with a couple of friends I have mentioned once or twice, these friends being refugees from San Francisco. They relocated to New Hampshire at the end of last summer, taking up temporary residence in the city of Portsmouth. (I think I may have also mentioned they were closeted conservatives, something that made life in San Francisco even more daunting.)

Between breakfast at one of my favorite breakfast eateries (an actual diner, not a wannabe) and a few hours at one of our local ski resorts, it took up a good portion of the day, hence a shortened post today.


One observation from today’s activities: a lot of people are still making best use of the outdoor recreational facilities. Lift tickets, cross-country passes, and snow-tubing tickets at the ski resorts were all sold out. (We were smart enough to buy our tickets online a few days ago.) The parking lots were full and the lifts were busy as was the food court/restaurant. Some of this was likely due to it being close to the end of the resort’s ski season, with it being open only on weekends going forward. That we’ll also be seeing three days with temps in the 50’s and 60’s later in the week may also have something to do with it because who knows how much that will affect the snow cover on the trails and slopes.

One thing that didn’t make sense was the requirement to wear masks...outdoors. It makes sense if customers were inside the rental office, welcome center, or food court/restaurant. But wearing them outside when on a lift or coming down the slopes?

Then again, there wasn’t heavy enforcement of the mask mandate. So it might be seen more as a “We have to go through the motions to placate The Powers That Be, but we’re not going to be obsessive about it” action.


First it was Dr. Seuss. Then it was Mr. Potato Head.

Now it’s Pepe Le Pew.

This has gone beyond ridiculous and well into the absurd...and insane. Then again, it’s the New York Times Charles Blow making a big deal about this, and that explains everything.


And that’s the (very abbreviated) news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where it’s still quite chilly, it’s been sunny all day, and where Town Meetings start this coming week.


The $15 Minimum Wage - The US Senate Gets It Right For Once

I’m glad to see that my home state’s US Senators (Democrats both) didn’t drink the Progressive Kool-Aid...this time...and voted against including the $15 minimum wage embedded in the pork-ridden $1.9 trillion Covid ‘relief’ bill pushed by President * and Speaker Pelosi, and passed by the House. They understood it was a non-starter and should be debated on its own merits.

A lot of people keep making a big deal about passing a $15 minimum wage, focusing on one small aspect of the issue while ignoring the proverbial 800-pound gorilla in the room: the 107% increase in the federal minimum wage will hurt far more people than it might help. They purposely try to believe the Law of Unintended Consequences will not come into play...this time...and that the effects of such an unprecedented increase in the minimum wage will have no negative effects across the economy and leave the working people this increase was supposed to help worse off than they were before. Will the proponents like Congresscritter AOC (Clueless - NY14) and Senator Bernie Sanders (CPUSA - VT) apologize to those who lose their jobs because of their actions? Of course they won’t. After all, their intentions were good, and that’s all that counts, right? Results aren’t important, right?

What is the reality?

The changes in the minimum wage since the 1950’s has run between 9% and 13%, sometimes changed on a specific date and at other times phased in over a period of two or three years. The changes caused some disruptions, but not all that many. But more than doubling the minimum wage is supposed to have little or no negative effects? Yeah. Right.


University Of Texas Cancels Cancel Culture

Has ‘cancel culture’ gone too far? Yup. It did that a long time ago.

The ignorant have tried to cancel Dr. Seuss, Laura Ingalls Wilder, and even Mr. Potato Head.

The latest target?

The University of Texas and its well-known song “The Eyes of Texas Are Upon You”.

It’s more than that, of course, It’s a Texas institution and now, cancel culture hysterics have come for it.

But it’s very hard to cancel an institution. Knock down a few statues, erase the history books — these are easy. But the history, tradition, and sheer emotion tied up into an institution — even the barbarians will have trouble canceling that.


Now, on the 185th anniversary of Texas independence, controversy threatens it. But the song won’t be canceled without a fight.


Do these children really believe they’re fighting racism by canceling a song? Tearing down a monument? Scrubbing a history text? Racism is a disease of the heart and soul and isn’t cured by inflaming passions against the fight against it by attacking symbols that have nothing to do with racism unless the meaning or context in which they appear is horribly twisted by those not seeking to heal but to hurt.

At bottom, cancel culture is cruelty writ large. Symbols that have deep personal meaning to perhaps millions of people are attacked with full knowledge that they are injuring their feelings. That’s cruel and unjust.

Right now, fear of being seen as “racist” is what’s driving this effort forward. Perhaps fear of suffering financially is the antidote. Neither solution is optimal and none will be found as long as the goal isn’t ending racism, as much as it is revenge against those who perpetrated historic injustices.

Cancel culture is part and parcel of so many SJWs, pushing ‘social justice’ that so often has little or nothing to do with actual justice. You don’t right past wrongs by committing new wrongs “in the name of justice”. The new wrongs fix nothing and generate even more animosity and harsh feelings, just the opposite of what should be taking place.

But apparently those new wrongs make those participating in cancel culture feel better about themselves for having done ‘something’, even if it’s the wrong something and everyone else can go screw themselves.

Yeah, like that attitude is going to help fix things.