Taking A Brief Look Back On 2021

Here it is, the 365th day of 2021, meaning it is time to look back upon the previous 364 days. I can sum them up with a single sentence: Thank God 2021 is over!

It has not been a good year.

Here are some of the events, happenings, and observations from this past year, in no particular order:

- There is an incompetent dementia patient sitting in the Oval Office. Not that he was competent before the dementia kicked in.

- We have a vice president who is even less competent, likes the trappings and the perks of the job but doesn’t actually want to do her job, or more likely, is incapable of doing her job.

- The DNC is in the hands of the Communist Party...er...Progressive wing of the Democrat Party, pushing every Left Wing cause there is and working very hard to dismantle the US and create a new Soviet Union.

- WRBA (Whoever is Running the Biden Administration) has seriously mishandled Covid and is still trying to blame former President Trump for their inability to get a handle on it. That the definition of ‘Covid death’ being used is so broad has seriously inflated the death toll and been used as a club to take increasing control of the country, the economy, and eroding the Constitutional rights of the people and eroding federalism.

- The price of energy has skyrocketed, not due to actual market forces but as a response to direct interference by WRBA by banning new oil and gas leases on federal lands, threatening to cancel existing leases, and severely restricting fracking. The US went from being energy independent on January 19th to dependent upon hostile foreign sources (OPEC) on January 20th. It wasn’t a mistake. It was deliberate.

- Thousands of Americans working in Afghanistan and Afghans who were allied with US forces in Afghanistan were abandoned, cast aside like trash because WRBA didn’t want to be bothered with keeping promises made by previous administrations. To this day WRBA has done nothing to get the abandoned American citizens home or the get our Afghan allies out of Afghanistan. Many of those allies have already been imprisoned or executed by the Taliban.

- The media is still carrying a lot of water for WRBA, choosing to ignore the failures, the prevarications, morally and ethically bankrupt actions, and questionably legal/constitutional actions. However, we are starting to see cracks in that support as the media is finding it increasingly difficult to cover up the blatant actions by said WRBA.

- On a more relatable topic, the housing market went insane, some of it attributable to people leaving the ‘big city’ to get away from the aforementioned Covid pandemic and some attributable to others fleeing the increasingly oppressive blue states. Demand didn’t ramp up so much as skyrocket over a relatively short period, with demand far outstripping supply in some areas and supply far outstripping demand in others. (Some of the latter is taking place in blue states as people want to sell and relocate to red states but there aren’t enough buyers in those blue states.)

- Inflation is rampant, a lot of it caused by the government spending more money than it is taking and and paying for it by cranking up the proverbial printing presses to ‘11’. What’s worse is that WRBA is trying to portray the inflation as something good, even though everyone know that inflation hurts the middle class and really hurts the poor. They’ve taken a page out of Orwell’s 1984 to change the meaning of words so that even horrible things will be described as something good or beneficial.

- I found it interesting, but not surprising, that a large number of parents across the nation decided they weren’t going to return their children to public schools when those closed due to Covid reopened this past fall. Some decided to home-school their children and others to send them to private schools. Covid seems to have been the nudge some parents needed to pull their kids from the local indoctrination center masquerading as a public school. More than a few parents saw first-hand what their children were being taught when schooling was remote and didn’t want them anywhere near their school after that.

- One thing I’ve been watching online this year has been compilations of dash cam videos on YouTube showing all kinds of dumb driver actions and accidents. Some dumb actions and accidents were due to driver inattention. Some where due to driver inexperience. Some to weather. And some were deliberate. Road rage incidents and possible insurance scams abound in the dash cam videos. Probably the most common were so-called “brake checks” where a motorist will pass a vehicle, pulling in just in front of the car or truck with the dash cam and then slamming on their brakes. In a lot of cases the brake check vehicle is hit by the vehicle it passed. The ‘victim’ claims injuries and sues. However, the dash cam video shows what actually happened and the suit (and insurance claim) goes nowhere. Dash cam video has also exonerated or condemned other motorists even if the dash cam was in a vehicle not involved in an incident. Seeing these videos is one reason why I invested in a dash cam: self-protection. Even the best ones run less than $130 and are cheap insurance. Considering I have seen so many more people driving ‘dumb’ this year, at least up here, I figured it was a good idea to get one.

- Seeing the results of a number of state and local elections around the nation this year indicates to me that the Democrats are in deep trouble. With a few exceptions, Democrats lost quite a few of those off-year contests, even in nominally Democrat majority districts. It could be a precursor to the 2022 midterm elections. Let’s hope that is indeed the case.

- I have to admit that I am puzzled by the labor shortage. There are all kinds of jobs open, gone wanting for people to fill them. Our labor participation rate is lower than it was two years ago. So what are all the folks who left the workforce getting their money? Or did they get a big bag of government money so they don’t feel the need to work? I know the ‘extra’ unemployment stipend for those affected by Covid expired back in September, yet even though their jobs have started up again they haven’t returned to work. This is something we’ve seen across the board, not limited to one specific portion of the workforce.

- Speaking of jobs, one thing that has come to the forefront this past year is Work From Home. It became a thing in 2020, but even after employees returned to their workplaces, many employers (including mine) continued many of their WFH policies because they found productivity and employee satisfaction was up. It has also been a recruiting tool which has certainly helped my employer fill some open positions in our engineering department. Not every job lends itself to WFH, even mine. (I have to spend time in the electronic hardware, optics, environmental, and calibration labs. The paperwork I take care of from home.)

There are tons more I could have included in the list above, but I wouldn’t have been able to post this for a few more days.

Just one more horrible thought to ponder: 2020 was followed by 2020 Won. 2020 Won is being followed by 2020 Too.


Price Controls? Really?

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

We have a powerful weapon to fight inflation: Price controls.

It’s obvious The Guardian hasn’t heard of Richard Nixon or any of the others who tried price controls to ‘fix’ inflation over the years. The results were always the same: a severe recession. The most recent example is Venezuela whose efforts paradoxically led to hyper-inflation and a dead economy.

I remember Nixon’s efforts to curb inflation with wage and price controls. It was an utter failure and sent the economy into a severe recession with high unemployment, astronomical interest rates, and a stagnant economy. It was a damn scary time and I have no wish to relive those times.


One Of Our Biggest Problems

I saw this video the other day that does a pretty good job of explaining the Dunning-Kruger Effect and how it is one of the major causes of the disagreements and animosity in our country today. I do not disagree with the conclusions reached in this video, having seen more than a few examples of the Dunning-Kruger Effect personally and having come under its influence myself (but at least realizing that was the case and doing something to remedy the problem).

As I mentioned, I have dealt directly with people under the influence of the Dunning-Kruger Effect, specifically when it comes to areas of technology where I make my living, with them telling me I’m wrong and don’t know what I’m talking about even though I have published a number of papers and hold a number patents for the technologies in question. It wasn’t until further discussion that I found that they had read a couple of articles and visited a couple of forums on the ‘Net and realized they had no real understanding of the technologies in question or the businesses employing those technologies. It is no different when it comes to other technologies, science, economics, politics, history, and a whole host of other areas of knowledge. The had a little knowledge, felt overly confident that they ‘knew it all’, but actually knew very little. As they learned more their confidence about their knowledge dwindled as they came to know just how much they didn’t know.

However, there is a problem with some of these folks, that being that too many of them believe they don’t need to know more so they get stuck in that “overconfidence in their minimal (and probably wrong) knowledge” zone. When confronted with additional and easily verifiable information, they ignore it, will not believe it. At some point everyone falls into that trap, me included. Recognizing that trap means that we can move past it and get out of that zone. And that is the rub – too many don’t/won’t recognize it, so they get stuck believing something that just isn’t so.

I don’t know how to solve the problem of the “know-nothings”, but maybe someone does.


Thoughts On A Sunday

It is a the last Thoughts On a Sunday for 2021, but it will be an abbreviated one as there have been all kinds of doings for Christmas.

It being Christmas weekend it’s been busy. Yesterday we were supposed to make the trip down to the oldest WP Sister’s place to celebrate Christmas, but Mother Nature had other ideas, gracing us with freezing rain in the morning and snow in the early afternoon and then later in the evening. Instead, we headed down late this morning, hence the abbreviated TOAS today.

The freezing rain coated the roads and highways, causing numerous multiple-car accidents. The WP Mom, my sister and I decided it was best if we postponed our trip down to visit until today. Katy had to delay her trip to her cousins on Cape Cod yesterday by a couple of hours to allow the highway crews to get I-95 through Connecticut cleaned up. (They didn’t have nearly the amount of freezing rain we experienced up here in New Hampshire and northern Massachusetts.)

The WP-Mom, BeezleBub and I did manage to get over to the ex’s place for dinner on Christmas Eve, something that made our delayed Christmas Day celebration tolerable.

With all of that being said, I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas Day!


I have to say that Christmas was paradoxical this year, with it winding up the excitement for the past couple of weeks and the day that passed by so quickly. It felt a bit more low-key to me as compared to some that have gone before. There didn’t seem to be the stress that sometimes comes with the Christmas holiday. (I admit that I actually enjoy Thanksgiving more than Christmas as there usually isn’t as nearly the stress on Thanksgiving one usually sees with Christmas.)

There didn’t seem to be the pressure to come up with the right gifts for friends and family this year. It was easier, somehow. Even finding the right gifts for Katy was not as stressful as I expected it to be. I knew exactly what I wanted to get for her and I knew exactly where to find them. Even finding something for the WP Mom was easier this year, something I never thought I’d ever say.

All in all, it was a great Christmas.


And one last thing for Christmas, particularly for my fellow geeks:


And that’s Christmas from Lake Winnipesaukee, where it was a White Christmas, it’s cold, and where preparations for New Year’s are under way.


Thoughts On A Sunday

We had our first substantial snowfall overnight which started yesterday late yesterday morning. While not nearly as substantial as our first ‘substantial’ snowfall last December (39 inches here at The Gulch), we still had 7 inches which did require a little digging out here and plowing of the roads. (The running joke up here is than anything less than 6 inches isn’t worth plowing and is more of a nuisance amount.)

There may be another bit of snow later in the week prior to Christmas, so it is likely we’ll have a White Christmas up here in New Hampshire this year.


Now to one of the important questions that many have asked but have not yet had answered, that being “What the heck is that little pocket on my Levis for? Nothing fits in there!”

This is something I have known since I was a kid, but it seems that knowledge hasn’t been passed on from generation to generation. So allow me to enlighten you – It’s for...


Just what kind of business is CNN running that seems to attract sexual perverts?

I remember when it was a serious news operation, groundbreaking and revered. Then it devolved into a propaganda organization filled with people who figured the rules (and laws) don’t apply to them, just to “the little people”. However, they’re finding out they’re wrong.

It’s about time.


If we need any more proof that radical Greens want us dead, there’s this from Moonbattery:

Moonbats sign petition to imprison climate change skeptics.

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) isn’t the only one who thinks dissidents should be imprisoned for contradicting the current Democrat Party line on climate change. Mark Dice has no problem finding average morons on the street who agree with this policy:

Ironically, it is actually the moonbats who deny climate change, by pretending that the climate does not always change, no matter how much taxation and regulation are imposed by Democrats.

Maybe Bill Nye the Pseudoscience Guy will assume the role of Tony Fauci in the coming climate crackdown. As Karl Marx should have said, history repeats itself, first as farce, second as even more absurd farce.

What makes this even more farcical is that Bill Nye has argued in favor of “imprisoning those who dispute the global warming hoax.”

So much for tolerance and allowing those who disagree with them the freedom to do so. For a supposed “science guy” he’s way too close-minded. Science guys are supposed to be open-minded because they have to be mindful that what they believe may be proven wrong. (Even Einstein understood that.)

(H/T Pirate’s Cove)


Talk about irony!

COVID Compliance Inspector Booted from Bar After She’s Unable to Prove Her Own Vaccination Status

A frustrated Staten Island bar manager caught a COVID compliance inspector off guard this week after the member of the Gestap — I’m sorry, New York City Department of Health was unable to present her own proof of vaccination like anyone else entering the premises.


Maggie Koronilian, manager of the Big Nose Kate’s Saloon in Staten Island, told the New York Post on Friday that she’d had to kick the public employee out of the establishment on Tuesday over the incident while the bar was able to prove itself in compliance.

Seems fair to me. After all, those enforcing the ‘law’ should themselves comply with the law they are enforcing, right?


Let’s follow on with another bit of stupidity, in this case a school system in Colorado, specifically Denver, has decided that segregation might be a good idea.

Denver Public Schools now promoting racially-segregated playtime—for "equity." pic.twitter.com/QO5XZXHfcX

— Christopher F. Rufo ⚔️ (@realchrisrufo) December 14, 2021

And as a follow-on:

A spokesperson for Denver Public Schools said that Centennial Elementary school leaders met with “some of the Black families whose children attend” Denver Public Schools (DPS) and they requested a separate, segregated space to meet one another.

“Some of these families shared with us that, since the only time many of them see one another is at drop-off and pick-up times, we host some events where Black families can meet one another, connect with one another and share their experiences about the school with one another,” DPS Media Manager Scott Pribble told the Daily Caller.

Pribble said that the school was “honoring their request,” though the school maintains that “all families are welcome to attend all of [the school’s] events.”

Somehow I have a feeling that families not of color may not be as welcome as Mr. Pribble thinks they may be.

All of this brings up another question, that being whether “the School District is unaware of social media where people can meet and organize events on their own”?

And then there’s this:

The bigger question is “if everyone is welcome, why is the event called ‘Families of Color Playground Night?'”

Imagine how fast the government would come down on a company or store that promoted a “White Families Shopping Night” and then tried to claim “all families were welcome.”

It doesn’t even pass the smell test.

Indeed it does not. It doesn’t even come close.


How about one more bit of stupidity, this time at Emory University?

This case involves a Christmas wreath and garlands hung on and around the front door of college fraternity house. The problem?

Apparently those decorations violate school policy.

It has nothing to do with the decorations themselves. Rather it has to do with the fact that the frat members put up those decorations themselves rather than the University’s Housing Operations department. A wreath on the front door and garlands around the door and wrapped around the railings of the stairs requires University personnel to actually put them there?

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


This isn’t a headline I thought I’d ever see.

Pot Industry in California on Verge of Collapse.

Really? Pot is legal in California yet the pot growers are going broke. There is a logical explanation, something anyone paying attention when government becomes involved in any industry will know. The explanation?


Potheads who thought government legalization of pot would lead to heaven on earth forgot about one tiny detail: getting the government involved in anything either makes it more expensive or ruins it completely.

In the case of legal pot in California, it’s both.

Many pot smokers in California probably wish they were still buying from the cartels, given how expensive their marijuana has become. And with the dearth of legal pot shops in much of the state, potheads are bypassing the high taxes and spotty service in the existing stores to keep buying on the street.

When government regulation and taxation are too heavy, the industry being regulated and taxed will struggle, if not fail. This is particularly true if there are competitors not handcuffed by those regulations and taxes. And so it is with the legal pot industry in California. The argument that the drug cartels would be hamstrung once pot was legal sounded great and was used as one reason for legalizing pot. But in reality it didn’t hurt the cartels at all. It was just a temporary stumbling block and soon they were selling as much pot as they ever had, but it was more difficult for the authorities to crack down on it because pot was now legal in the state. At best they might be able to cite them for selling without a peddler's license. Maybe.


And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the snow has stopped falling (for now), the stores are jammed with Christmas shoppers, and I have but two more Christmas gifts to pick up...and I am on vacation for the next two weeks!


Is Omicron The Last Variant?

As I mentioned in my weekend post last week, The Powers That Be have been trying to crank up the hysteria over the Omicron variant, pushing the narrative that everyone needs to be vaccinated to hep protect them from it despite evidence that a very large percentage of those testing positive, whether or not they are symptomatic, were fully vaccinated, with some also having had a booster.

There’s also a lot of evidence that the Omicron variant is nowhere near as severe as The Powers That Be need it to be.

I quoted Richard Friedland, head honcho of South Africa’s largest health provider: “I actually think there is a silver lining here and this may signal the end of COVID-19, with it attenuating itself to such an extent that it’s highly contagious, but doesn’t cause severe disease.”

Indeed. As of last week, non-deadly omicron had almost completely crowded out the barely-deadly delta variant, accounting for three-quarters of all new cases.

Nevertheless, I had to read a week’s worth of warnings from our nation’s 24/7 panic mongers that we still didn’t know enough about omicron to give the All Clear! signal. Keep those double-masks on and stay hidden in the basement.

Well, is a 90% decrease in hospitalizations and exactly zero omicron deaths enough for our professional panic-mongers?

Probably not.

Is anyone with half a lick of sense still paying attention to them?

Certainly not.

They’re going to push the “We’re all gonna DIE if you don’t do what we tell you to do!” narrative for everything they can. It’s the easiest way for them to maintain control of the people, the economy, and the country. So Omicron will be portrayed as the latest version of the Black Plague, but the people won’t be buying into it.


Coming Home To Roost - The Other Shoe Drops

I posted earlier about New England’s energy growing energy deficit and possible rolling blackouts due to the fragility of the electrical grid because of decreasing generation capacity and a shortage of natural gas. There’s also the other side-effects of now making themselves felt: Skyrocketing electrical and natural gas prices that have increased at well above what we usually see this time of year.

Granite Staters report higher costs on their utility bills than normal as winter begins.

Liberty gas customer Michael Cammarata said he paid 55 cents a therm for natural gas this time last year. In 2021, he was charged $1.10.

"It is coming up with a 100% increase, just astounding. It boggles the mind," Cammarata said. "Finally, the retirement status hits you square in the head. Your income stays the same, and everything else is going up."


Electricity bills are rising, as well, according to Until media relations manager Alec O'Meara.

"There are really two parts of the utility bill," O'Meara said. "There is the distribution piece which is effectively your local utility."

O'Meara said that part includes everything from staff to trucks.

Second is the supply part of the bill, "and that changes every six months and it ties to the market cost of the electricity itself," O'Meara said.

One factor that makes this even worse is that a lot of this is self-inflicted. Activists fought tooth and nail against projects that would have relieved both the energy deficit and helped keep the cost of energy in check.

There were two Hydro Quebec power line projects that would have brought abundant, cheap, and clean electricity into New England. One, the Northern Pass project, was canceled after opposition in the North Country of New Hampshire found support in Concord. The second, the Central Maine Power project that was seen as an alternative to the canceled Northern Pass project that would have brought that electricity through Maine is now in jeopardy after a state ballot made some aspects of the project illegal after the fact.

Another project that would have brought enough natural gas into New England from Pennsylvania to meet the region’s needs suffered a similar fate. The proposed Kinder Morgan pipeline would have brought cheap domestic natural gas into New England. But again the activists fought it and killed the project. Instead we have to import expensive natural gas from overseas from unreliable sources.

And people are wondering why their electricity and natural gas bills have doubled? The answer to that question is easy: The know-nothing activists figured they knew better what was needed than everyone else and made sure they got what they wanted. And now their ‘chickens’ have come home to roost and we’re all paying the price for it.

Gee. Thanks.



Thoughts On A Sunday

It was a rainy and foggy day yesterday. The WP Mom and I were out on the road for a good portion of the day yesterday afternoon, visiting family, shopping, running errands, dropping off items we purchased on the behalf of friends who couldn’t travel, and so on.

All in all, it was a dreary day, weather-wise. But otherwise it was a good day.


It is getting closer to Christmas and the pre-Christmas craziness is ramping up. It can be seen in the eyes of desperate shoppers, looking for the ‘perfect’ gift for family and friends and finding the supply chain issues have thwarted their search.

I am feeling a similar desperation, but not because of Christmas shopping. Rather, it is based on the fact that this coming week is my last week working prior to vacation. I am trying to get three weeks worth of work done this week before taking two weeks of vacation. It doesn’t help that work is seeing the annual ‘End-of-the-Year’ crush of customers using up the last of their capital equipment money before the end of the year. We also have annual processes we have to go through starting December every year. I am hoping to get them all done by this coming Friday.


The Progressives are pushing their Green Energy ‘ideology’ hard, knowing their window of opportunity may be closing. So they are doing everything they can do to destroy the existing energy infrastructure, block green energy infrastructure that we know work, push green energy infrastructure we know can’t possibly provide the energy a modern 21st century civilization needs. It might provide just enough energy to keep our Progressive elite in the 21st century. The rest of us will be out of luck.


Speaking of Green Energy ideology, there’s this from Watts Up With That showing how Green Energy is not so green after all, particularly when it comes to the ecological damage green energy projects cause all in the of Saving The Planet.

Green supporters of renewable energy are horrified at the devastation construction has wrought on pristine Cairns wilderness.

The wind farms angering renewable energy fans.

In the ranges behind Cairns, bushland is being cleared in the name of climate action. It’s pitting eco warriors against green energy projects.

This is something that is ignored with a number of green energy projects: The amount of land that will have to be cleared for those projects. The worst offenders are the solar energy projects which can require clearing square miles of forests in those areas that are heavily forested, like we see in the Northeast. Windfarms cause their own havoc between wildlife kills, infrasound and light-flicker health effects and the damage excavation for service roads, wind turbine bases, transmission lines, control buildings cause over such a wide area.


Talk about the Law of Unintended Consequences coming into play!

The Push For Electric Vehicles Is Causing Massive Deforestation And Environmental Damage.

A major nickel mine in a Philippines rainforest has continued to expand, mowing down acres of trees as global demand for minerals essential for electric vehicle manufacturing surges.

The Rio Tuba mine in the region of Palawan supplies an important mineral for electric vehicle batteries in Tesla and Toyota cars, but the mine is nearing an expansion that would cause it to grow from four square miles to 14 square miles, according to an NBC News investigation. The growth of the mine would cause massive deforestation of the land which environmentalists warn could destroy the area’s ecosystem.

This is but one area where the efforts to prevent climate change are doing far more damage than climate change could. Many of the materials needed to make EVs come from mines. Expanding mining a couple of orders of magnitude to meet the demands for materials required by EVs will cause environmental damage on an unimaginable scale. This is something proponents of EVs are either ignorant about or are willfully ignoring. If I had to guess I’d say it’s a combination of both.


As I mentioned two weeks ago, The Powers That Be are subtlypushing the narrative that the Omicron variant may be the next Black Plague, giving them an excuse to impose the same useless but damaging ‘precautions’ that didn’t work the last time, further crippling our economy.

However, that narrative is going to be a tough sell. The WHO is reporting that so far the Omicron variant is nowhere near as severe as the previous variants and has, at this point, recorded no deaths from this variant. None.


How demented is California Governor-For-Life Gavin Newsom?

This demented.

Newsom asked his staff, the state legislature, and Democrat attorney general to craft a bill that “would create a right of action allowing private citizens to seek injunctive relief, and statutory damages of at least $10,000 per violation plus costs and attorney’s fees, against anyone who manufactures, distributes, or sells an assault weapon or ghost gun kit or parts in the State of California.”


State Sen. Brian Dahle, a Republican from rural northeast California, opposes the plan, and believes it’s a stunt for Newsom to gain praise from his radical base ahead of a possible run for president.

“The right to bear arms is different than the right to have an abortion,” Dahle explained. “The right to have an abortion is not a Constitutional amendment. So I think he’s way off base.”

Firearms, and the right to bear them, are specifically mentioned in the Bill of Rights and enshrined in the Constitution, whereas abortion is mentioned nowhere.

Justice Clarence Thomas made the same point, asking the plaintiffs’ attorney where the right to abortion is found in the Constitution during the recent Texas abortion law case.


And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee where further preparations are being made for Christmas, Christmas shopping continues apace, and where Christmas will get here sooner than we think.


Coming Home To Roost

After years of anti-everything activists putting the kibosh on every project that would provide more energy here in New England, the fruits of those efforts are finally making themselves known and not in a good way.

A much needed natural gas pipeline – the Kinder Morgan pipeline from Pennsylvania – was blocked, meaning readily available and less expensive natural gas will not be coming into New England. That means it is dependent upon natural gas coming from overseas, with much of it coming from countries hostile to the US, specifically Yemen and Russia. Can the activists who killed the pipeline explain to us how natural gas from halfway around the world from unreliable sources is somehow better than natural gas from Pennsylvania? I remember one such anti-pipeline activist complaining about the proposed pipeline, dismayed that “the only reason they want to build the pipeline is to make money”. Excuse me?

Why does any business do anything? It isn’t to go bankrupt. It has to make money in order to stay in business. If they have stockholders, then it has to make money, make a profit in order to meet the expectations of stockholders: generate income for those same stockholders.

What some of those same anti-pipeline activists didn’t realize (or chose to ignore) is that natural gas is used to generate electricity, not just heat homes and businesses.

Then there’s two different but related power line projects that would have brought thousands of megawatts of green electricity into New England from Quebec that have been blocked. Or should I say one has been blocked and another is on the brink of being blocked.

The Northern Pass Project would have brought a power line from Hydro Quebec through New Hampshire and into central Massachusetts. From there it would be directed wherever it was needed in New England by ISO New England. But opposition to the power line, even after changes were made to place them underground in some locations in deference to those who were dismayed about the new power line cutting across the more scenic areas of the northern part of New Hampshire, was fierce. In the end, the opponents won and the project was dead and those thousands of megawatts of electrical power were not going to come to New England.

The Central Main Power Project in Maine was the second attempt to get those thousands of megawatts of power into New England. Again, the power line would run into central Massachusetts and the power would be distributed/controlled by ISO New England. But again opposition to the project has been working to block it. A ballot initiative to make the project illegal ex post facto passed in November and its status is up in the air even though a lot of work had already been done as part of the construction progress.

The permanent shutdown of some existing powerplants and new electrical sources being being blocked even as the demand for electricity has been growing has put New England in an energy bind. In fact, ISO New England has warned that rolling blackouts could become necessary over the winter if the wrong conditions occur.

New England power grid operators are warning of the small but potentially disastrous possibility of rolling winter blackouts for New England under certain circumstances.

Such a move would depend on the weather and an energy supply chain being described as "fragile."

"We can keep the lights on in the wintertime with the current resource base, as long as something bad doesn't happen,” Gordon Van Welie, CEO of ISO New England, said in 2016.

For years now, Van Welie has issued the same warning. He says the regional power grid is vulnerable to a winter one-two punch of an extended cold snap combined with an interruption in supply or power generation. The result would be rolling blackouts in frigid temperatures.


Today, Van Welie says the danger is even more significant.

"Because we have some 2,000 megawatts fewer firm resources on the system,” Van Welie said.

Considering it can get well below zero here in New England, such blackouts can be potentially dangerous even if they occur for only an hour or two. If the natural gas pipeline had been built or the Northern Pass project had been completed, that ‘missing’ 2000 megawatts would already have been replaced.

What I have found ironic is that a number of folks I know who were against the projects have also been complaining about their their electricity bills and how much they’ve gone up. (Some folks are seeing a 50% increase in their rates for the winter. Not that they were all that low before then.)

What’s even more ironic (or maybe moronic) is that many of those same folks seem to think renewables like wind and solar can make up that deficit easily. (Note: We don’t have anywhere near that capacity here in New England.) However, they apparently didn’t see what happened in Texas last winter (most of the wind turbines were offline because of the cold temps and ice buildup on the turbine blades so they couldn’t provide power to make up for some of the natural gas plants being offline due to frozen valves and pumps) or similar problems seen in Europe.

I wonder if the anti-everything activists will ever make the connection between their ‘wins’ and that they’re sitting in the dark on a cold winter night?

Probably not.


Thoughts On A Sunday

I don’t know about any of you, but I have almost finished my Christmas shopping. I have only one gift left to buy, that one being for the WP Mom. I always save that one for last because she’s not easy to buy for. Then again, I have a feeling a lot of people have the same problem buying Christmas gifts for their moms. What do you get someone who already has everything?

I certainly saw more than a few folks hitting the various shops in beautiful downtown Wolfeboro yesterday. I had decided not to hit the ‘traditional’ stores for Christmas shopping, choosing to patronize some of our local shops instead. It was certainly more interesting as I saw a lot of potential gifts I wouldn’t have found elsewhere. It made shopping for Katy a little easier. A little.


I attended a meeting at our local ski resort to see a presentation about their plans to expand. From reading some of the stories in our local newspaper about a clash between the county delegation-appointed commission responsible for the ski resort and the county delegation about the proposal, I expected a hostile crowd.

It was anything but.

After the commission presented the plans for the proposed expansion, everyone was enthusiastic. Our ski area has had some pretty good seasons over the past five winters, even with less than perfect weather. (We had one winter that was warmer than usual which meant rain rather than snow part of the time. Another winter was much colder than normal which meant there were some days when the slopes were closed due to the extremely dangerous wind chills.) We saw record numbers last winter despite Covid. But with other ski areas doing upgrades to their lifts, adding slopes and more snowmaking, improving customer amenities and other improvements, maintaining the status quo at ours isn’t an option.

It will be interesting to see how it turns out.


It is no surprise the Ninth Circus Court has decided to ignore Heller vs District of Columbia and uphold a ban on “high capacity” magazines (which in most states are standard capacity magazines).

I have no doubt that this case - Duncan v. Bonta - will end up in front of the US Supreme Court to have it overturn the Ninth Circuit Court, the most overturned court in the US. (That right there should tell us something.)


It is obvious to anyone paying even the smallest amount if attention that the DNC-MSM propaganda machine is cranking up the fear-mongering about the latest Covid variant, Omicron. To hear them tell it this variant worst variant yet, spreading a lot faster than Delta.

It doesn’t matter that the reality as seen in the South African reports that it is a much milder variant than the previous variants. (Delta was milder than the previous variants even though it spread easier, something seen with most viruses.) There were no reported hospitalizations due to Omicron in South Africa. (I believe Omicron was also discovered in Europe, in Belgium I think, and the same observations were made – it is a much milder variant than Delta.)

But the media is playing this as if people are in danger of dropping dead in the streets unless we double down on the same measures that we already know don’t work and surrender even more of our rights to our ‘betters’.

It never ends.


It’s all Fred Flintstone’s fault.

It appears a Stone Age civilization collapsed due to climate change.

A Stone Age Chinese civilization known as Liangzhu collapsed as a result of climate change, according to new research published last Wednesday in the peer-reviewed journal Science Advances.

The researchers, led by geologists Haiwei Zhang and Hai Cheng of the Institute of Global Environmental Change at Xi’an Jiaotong University, determined from geological records from Shennong and Jiulong caves as well as archeological data that the primary cause of the collapse of the Liangzhu culture was probably climate change-induced flooding and inundation.

So because Fred, Barney, and everyone in Bedrock were driving those foot-powered SUVs, another civilization on the other side of the globe was wiped out?

Right. Got it.

(H/T Pirate’s Cove)


How desperate is the Left to spin bad news about Biden as something good as a means of salvaging the reputation of WRBA?

This desperate. (This is a paywalled link.)

I don’t blame the Biden administration for trying to put a positive spin on the state of the country. That’s basically their job … accentuate the positive, give people hope that things are getting better, all that stuff.

But, boy, are they bad at it.

And I mean, really, really bad.

Over the summer, the White House shared a graphic bragging that the cost of the average Independence Day barbecue was down 16 cents over the previous year.

Now, let’s ignore that the graphic was inaccurate and just focus on the fact that the White House was so desperate to find something to brag about that they landed on the alleged savings of 16 cents.

Oh, yeah, I was just overjoyed that I spent 16 cents less for our Fourth of July cookout!

Yeah. Right.

It gets even worse, with skewed graphs showing that gas prices have fallen...2 cents compared to a month ago, but making it look as if it were a huge drop. I’m sorry, but $3.399/gallon versus $3.419/gallon is nothing to crow about considering that a year ago regular gas was $1.939 at the same gas station. (My trusty RAM 1500 uses mid-grade gas which runs $3.579/gallon unless I am towing in which case I use premium as I do get better fuel economy, which costs $3.839/gallon. Thank good ness I am not towing anything this time of year.)

Then, they try to spin the idea that inflation is good for us and the economy. Maybe in the Bizarro Earth where they live in their mind, but to the rest of us it is not. It means that our dollars don’t go nearly as far as they did before. How is that good for anyone?


I mentioned yesterday that I am seeing ice covering a couple of ponds as well as seeing ice on the southern end of Alton Bay.

This morning I was driving by Weirs Beach and I saw a thin skin of ice around the public docks. To make sure it wasn’t just an illusion, I actually stopped at the docks and walked down to the edge of the water and found that there was indeed that skin of ice on the water that extended about 10 feet past the end of the docks.

As I mentioned yesterday I don’t recall seeing this much ice quite this early in December.


And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where winter is increasingly making its presence known, Christmas is creeping ever closer, and Monday has once again returned all too soon.


Signs Of Winter Are Here...Early

If I need an indication that winter is here and may be colder than normal, one of the local ponds near our airport is all frozen over a lot earlier than normal. I also saw some ice on the southern end of Alton Bay on Lake Winnipesaukee while on my way to and from the town of Wolfeboro to do some Christmas shopping for Katy. While we’ve had a little snow, I don’t see this as the sole harbinger of winter. For me, it’s the ice.

We’ve had winters where the big lake never froze over, where only coves and portions of the bays had ice, but the main part of the lake was ice free.

That the pond in question was frozen over on December 1st, the earliest I recall it being frozen over in 20 years of living here at Lake Winnipesaukee, is telling.

We do have snow on the way this coming week, so let’s see how this winter is going to shape up.