Thoughts On A Sunday

The warmer temperatures have arrived with us seeing the low to mid 70’s today, tomorrow, and later in the week. That means it will make it a little easier to attend to the continuing spring cleanup chores, something that is taking a lot more time this spring as there have been some cleanups I haven’t performed over the past couple of years. (Not that it has been blatantly evident I didn’t get to them as they were internal to The Gulch, in this case in one of the two attics.)

I have two weeks left before the Official Weekend Pundit Lake Winnipesaukee is due to be launched which means I will have about two days before launch to clean it up, yet another part of the annual spring cleanup. Fortunately I have some of the boating gear here at the Gulch which will make it easier to clean before being returned to the boat.


I recently came to the conclusion that it was time to update some of the computers here at The Gulch, seeing as the youngest machine here is the laptop upon which I am writing this, and it’s 10 years old. The WP Mom’s computer is at least 12 years old and my HP Pavilion tower is even older. The laptop works well (though it needs a new battery, already on order from CDW), and has been using Linux since I acquired it a few years ago from my place of work when it was ‘surplussed’. It does what I need it to do though it isn’t all that fast.

Both the WP Mom’s and my office HP Pavilion are reaching end of life, at least as far as Windows is concerned as next year Microsoft will stop supporting Windows 10. Neither of our computers are likely to be able to use Windows 11, nor do I like the intrusiveness, bloatware, or the ‘millions’ of tweaks that comes along with Win 11, those tweaks needed to make it work nearly as well as Windows 10 has right out of the box.

Since I wasn’t going to use Windows 11 and the machines we have are getting long in the tooth, I felt it was time to look at new computers. I checked the pricing of computers that were similar to what we already had and I was surprised to see just how costly they are. Even taking into account inflation, they are a lot more expensive than I thought they would be. However, if it was necessary I would spend what was needed. But then I thought about Micro PCs, something we have been using at our lab for some time for some of the more routine activities rather than workstations or other desktops/laptops.

Two things that surprised me: the cost, a fraction that of a tower/desktop or laptops, and just how powerful they are. Between the CPUs and heavy duty graphics processors (GPUs) they employ, as well as the RAM and hard drives they contain I am amazed at just how good they are. Checking listings at various sellers, reviews (many of them on YouTube by content providers I trust), and checking the specifications and benchmarks, I found I could replace both of our computers for less than $500 total with machines that were many times faster and more capable than what we have been using. They are also a fraction of the size of our present computers – about the size of a paperback Tom Clancy novel.

It is true that they generally don’t come with built-in DVD/Blu-Ray drives, but external drives are cheap if you need them. The thing is I know more data/music/video and so on is handled via USB thumb drives if for no other reason than they have much higher capacity than any DVD or BluRay disk.

The new Micro PCs that will be replacing our old hardware will do what we need them to do. Since the WP Mom uses hers primarily for e-mail, web surfing, playing a few games like Solitaire and Mah-Jong, and the occasional video call. Not much computer horsepower is required for her needs. I do a lot of writing, some photo and video editing, and web surfing, of course. So I needed more horsepower and ordered one that is better suited to that use.

And which OS will be used on these new computers if not Windows 11?

Linux Mint.

And the old computers? They will be restaged for other uses, with my old HP Pavilion becoming an experimental machine using Arch Linux (after replacing the hard drive) and the WP Mom’s old Dell being upgraded with some more memory and a new hard drive, then loaded with Linux Mint as it is very Windows-like in appearance and usability as well as being having wide adjustability and configurability.


This isn’t a surprise to anyone paying attention, particularly up this way.

Annual Massachusetts Outmigration Hits 39,000, Up 1,100% Over The Last Decade.

That people are leaving Massachusetts isn’t surprising. That it’s a very small percentage of the total population isn’t either, but the article is making it seem it’s a large part of the population when in fact it’s about one-half of one percent, and that’s over a period of 10 years. If that was happening every year, then we’d be talking about heavy outmigration.

Part of the problem is that some of them end up here in New Hampshire, and of that group, some are bringing their voting patterns and Progressive viewpoints with them. This is much the same problem many red states have been dealing with. Others within the group are moderates or conservatives who had enough of dealing with the People’s Republic of Taxachusetts and decided to leave.


Some of the weapons systems we and our allies sent to Ukraine to help in their war against Russia have performed quite well, some might say almost miraculously.

Javelin and NLAW anti-tank missiles from the UK decimated Russian armor until Ukraine was able to bring its FPV drone into play as an additional anti-armor force. HIMARS gave Ukraine extended artillery range that could reach targets well within Russian occupied territory and do so with precision. ATACMS has since joined HIMARS which gives Ukraine even more range – up to 190 miles – to hit targets in occupied areas as well as Russia. Storm Shadow cruise missiles from the UK and France extended strike capability into Russian held territory as well as into Russia itself. The M2 Bradley IFV has made a big difference on the battlefield, performing far better than the Russian-built BMPs and showing it is more than capable of taking out Russian BMPs, BTRs, and tanks with it’s 25mm auto-cannon even while taking enemy fire and protecting the crew and troops inside.

But not all of the weapons we’ve provided to Ukraine have performed as well as the ones listed above, one of those under-performing weapons being the M1A1 Abrams tank.

Last year, the United States sent 31 of our nearly top-of-the-line Abrams M1A1 tanks to Ukraine. (I say "nearly" because we are already producing the upgraded M1A2 model.) Zelensky had been begging for them, insisting that they were the key to breaking through the Russian lines when Ukraine launched its summer counteroffensive. Well, we all saw how that worked out. The counteroffensive stalled and now the Russians are advancing and driving back Ukraine's forces on the eastern front. But what of our tanks? This week, Ukraine pulled the remaining tanks from the front lines. The tanks had reportedly become sitting ducks for Russian drone and missile strikes. More than a quarter billion dollars worth of military hardware has now apparently been sidelined or destroyed.

I’m not all that surprised even though the Abrams has much better survivability than the Russian T-64, T-72, T-80, and T-90 tanks. The Abrams is tougher, but it isn’t invulnerable. The newer M1A2, and specifically M1A2 Sep v3, has had upgraded systems and armor, including better reactive armor and powerplants. But the upgraded Abrams aren’t available to anyone except the US Army and US allies and aren’t likely to make their way to Ukraine unless the Russians escalate and go after NATO.


The L.A. Times declares a climate emergency in California because “the last few months have been more than 2 degrees hotter than average”. The problem?

NOAA’s temperature data doesn’t back up the claim. It doesn’t even come close.

NOAA’s data shows the mean February maximum temperature over its base period interval of 1901 – 2000 is 55.6 degrees F compared to California’s February 2024 maximum value of 56.0 degrees F (0.4 degrees F above the mean) as indicated in NOAA’s data table below versus the Times distorted and false claim of “2 degrees hotter than average”.

More importantly, the February 2024 maximum temperature of 56 degrees F in California is only the 62nd highest out of 130 total February recorded highest values with the 2024 temperature clearly not representing “a horrifying streak of record-breaking heat” as falsely hyped by the L A Times editorial.

Why let actual data affect the narrative? If the data doesn’t fit the narrative then it must be ignored, or better yet, discredited if not ‘disappeared’ entirely. That’s how the climate change cultists work.


And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the weather is getting better, more boats are appearing at docks and being seen on trailers on the road, and where even Monday isn’t going to bother me...I hope.


Quotes For Conservatives

I came across this over at Instapundit and realized I wanted to share the whole thing as it was somewhat truncated. ‘This’ happens to be a sampler of the late Roger Scruton’s quotes.

1. Scruton on the fundamental right-wing impulse: “Conservatism starts from the sentiment that good things are easily destroyed, but not easily created.”

Indeed. It seems too many on the left, particularly our deluded young adults, are nihilists, wishing for the destruction of something that works, even if imperfectly, wanting to replace it with something that only sounds good...but that history shows us again and again doesn’t work. Destruction is easy, something barbarians have done all throughout history. Creation is hard and always has been.

2. The hypocrisy of liberals: “Liberty is not the same thing as equality, and that those who call themselves liberals are far more interested in equalizing than in liberating their fellows.”

The big problem is that they aren’t really interested in equality. They are interested in equity, which isn’t the same thing at all. The one thing equity does more than anything else is bring misery because it ends up pulling everyone down to the lowest common denominator, not a place anyone wants to be.

3. Scruton on when to ignore a writer: “A writer who says that there are no truths, or that all truth is ‘merely relative,’ is asking you not to believe him. So don’t. Deconstruction deconstructs itself, and disappears up its own behind, leaving only a disembodied smile and a faint smell of sulphur.”

Yup, yet another manifestation of nihilism.

4. It’s impossible to even have a personal identity without social relations: “We are not born free, nor do we come into this world with a self-identity and autonomy of our own. We achieve those things, through the conflict and cooperation that weave us into the social fabric. We become freely choosing individuals only by acquiring obligations to parents, siblings, institutions and groups: obligations that we did not choose.”

It seems to me the old ‘Nature versus Nurture’ argument. I have always thought that even though Nature does have some sway in this, it is primarily Nurture that shapes us, civilizing us by turning us away from our savage nature.

5. In 1998, Salon asked Roger Scruton about censorship. He said: “Yes, I am in favor of censorship, but it has to be conducted by people like me. And that’s the difficulty.” Then he laughed. (He was talking about censoring porn.)

This shows that Scruton understood the inherent paradox of censorship: Who is capable of doing so without being prejudiced by their biases? No one, that’s who. But that doesn’t stop people from trying.

6. Tribes need Gods: “Tribes survive and flourish because they have gods, who fuse many wills into a single will, and demand and reward the sacrifices on which social life depends.”

Indeed. Those who believe in nothing...will fall for anything.

7. Love is the source of the conservative worldview: “The real reason people are conservatives is that they are attached to the things that they love, and want to preserve them from abuse and decay. They are attached to their family, their friends, their religion, and their immediate environment.”

I wish I could disagree with this as I would like to believe it isn’t just a conservative worldview, but as experience has shown me by belief would be wrong. That’s a darned shame.

8. Tradition is never arbitrary: “In discussing tradition, we are not discussing arbitrary rules and conventions. We are discussing answers that have been discovered to enduring questions.”

Traditions developed over time, usually for a good reason like ensuring the survival of the people. Those traditions that no longer serve a purpose, or worse, work to hold block new traditions, ones that may be desperately needed as the conditions in our society, our world, change.

9. Real art is always meaningful: “Art moves us because it is beautiful, and it is beautiful in part because it means something. It can be meaningful without being beautiful; but to be beautiful it must be meaningful.”

There’s not much I can add to that...though I have seen ‘art’ that I have to question. I’m sorry, but Piss Christ is not something I consider art. Maybe someone else sees it as art, but I am guessing the number of people believing that is small.

10. Liberty inevitably leads to inequality and people obsessed with equity have no answer to this conundrum. Scruton: “If liberation involves the liberation of individual potential, how do we stop the ambitious, the energetic, the intelligent, the good-looking and the strong from getting ahead?”

Harrison Bergeron, anyone?

11. The entrepreneur who builds matters more than the bureaucrat who manages. Scruton: “The important person in a free economy is not the manager but the entrepreneur – the one who takes risks and meets the cost of them.”

Managers and their counterparts, bureaucrats, have done more to hold back business and progress than anything else. An illustration of this is something my late father, a consultant, told me about his job:

“I have gone into companies with the power to hire and fire everyone from floor sweepers to CEOs. I have fired a lot of CEOs (and managers). I have never had to fire a floor sweeper.”


Friday Funny - Half Glass Of Water

I have also seen the third option state "Engineer: The glass is twice the size it needs to be."


Thoughts On A Sunday

It’s a much better weekend this weekend in light of the fact that the boatyard where the Official Weekend Pundit Lake Winnipesaukee Runabout is stored has been informed by yours truly to have it ready to launch by the second weekend of May. It does need a little work, specifically the ring anode on the stern drive as I noticed it was broken before the boat was stored for the winter. Fortunately it is an easy repair, one I would have done myself if I still lived in The Manse, but because there is no room to work on the boat here at The Gulch it has to be done at the boatyard.

So if all goes well I can get all of the gear stored here at The Gulch cleaned up, removing the over-the-winter storage dust and grime before putting it back into the boat prior to launching it.

The only thing I can hope for is that this year’s boating season weather will be much better than last year’s, meaning we will actually have one.


A great question I saw posted on the ‘Net that certainly had me thinking:

In the word “scent” which is the silent letter, the “s” or the “c”?


As much as Biden, WRBA, and the Climate Change faithful keep pushing EVs as the “only way to save the planet”, motorists aren’t buying into it. Yes, some people are wholeheartedly in favor of EVs and have bought one, but most of the rest of us want nothing to do with them. There are a whole host of reasons why running the gamut of the expense, the need to install a charger in/near one’s home, the higher repair and insurance costs, concerns about the propensity for EVs to ignite themselves, just to name a few.

One of the biggest concerns, even from people who like and own EVs, is range anxiety. Range is a big issue when it comes to EVs. What causing this anxiety?

...for many EV owners or intenders, charging at home or work just isn’t that easy.

I am a perfect example of the urbanite with limited access to charging. I live in a multi-unit, high-rise condo building, sharing a garage with many other residents. It’s an older building, built long before electric vehicles were on the market. So unlike with many new-construction residences, there are no fast chargers in the garage. I can charge using the 240V outlets, sure, but it’s slow.

There are some fast-charger options nearby, at least. I can walk/drive about 5-10 minutes to a new mixed-use development that has two ChargePoint chargers in the parking garages, or go a bit farther to a Whole Foods that has a couple of chargers. It’s not the biggest inconvenience in the world, but it is still a pain.

It also means that I have to plan my charging a bit, to bake in time to drive to the charger, hook up to the charger (assuming there’s one open), pay, lock the car, and walk home. And reverse those steps when I need the car again.

How often do any of us think about having to set aside time and effort in order to refill the tank of our ICE car or truck? Even if anyone does, how much time? It takes a few minutes to fill a gas or diesel tank and then we’re on our way again. How long does it take to recharge an EV? A lot longer than it takes to fill a gas tank.

I know I can’t speak for you, but I know I don’t want to have to allow time to charge an EV, to make plans in order to charge an EV. I just want to fuel up and go, something that is impossible to do with a EV...or at least a battery EV. If we’re talking a fuel cell EV, then refueling won’t take long at all, probably no longer than it takes to fill a gas tank. FCEVs are also greener than BEVs.


Then there’s this, the other side of the EV debate, that being the lack of capacity of our electrical grid to supply the electricity needed to meet the demand. The problem is such that even the Washington Post is noticing the grid is being pushed to the brink.

Vast swaths of the United States are at risk of running short of power as electricity-hungry data centers and clean-technology factories proliferate around the country, leaving utilities and regulators grasping for credible plans to expand the nation’s creaking power grid.

In Georgia, demand for industrial power is surging to record highs, with the projection of new electricity use for the next decade now 17 times what it was only recently. Arizona Public Service, the largest utility in that state, is also struggling to keep up, projecting it will be out of transmission capacity before the end of the decade absent major upgrades.

Northern Virginia needs the equivalent of several large nuclear power plants to serve all the new data centers planned and under construction. Texas, where electricity shortages are already routine on hot summer days, faces the same dilemma.


The situation is sparking battles across the nation over who will pay for new power supplies, with regulators worrying that residential ratepayers could be stuck with the bill for costly upgrades. It also threatens to stifle the transition to cleaner energy, as utility executives lobby to delay the retirement of fossil fuel plants and bring more online. The power crunch imperils their ability to supply the energy that will be needed to charge the millions of electric cars and household appliances required to meet state and federal climate goals.

I love it when I hear so many ‘greens’ say we can meet all of our energy needs with renewables when the numbers don’t even come close to adding up. The amount of land needed for renewables that can meet the demand is far more than the greens say it will take. (I’m not even going to get into the instability and variability of renewables or the need to have lots of storage to make it even close to viable.) What we really need is nuclear and a lot of I...but that’s a post for a different time.


I have to agree with the Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler that some people just need to be killed.

Seattle police unveiled fresh bodycam footage on Friday evening, revealing the moments preceding the fatal shooting of a suspected child molester at a Tukwila hotel earlier this week.

Chief Adrian Diaz of the Seattle Police Department (SPD) disclosed that the 67-year-old shitstain, believed to be a child predator, arrived at the DoubleTree Suites hotel around 3:13 p.m. on Wednesday, under the false impression that he was meeting two young girls, aged 7 and 11.

Unbeknownst to the suspect, multiple SPD officers from the Washington State Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce were undercover and poised to apprehend him.

The task force, operating under the SPD, specializes in investigating cases of Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE), which encompass activities such as the production, distribution, or possession of materials used to exploit children sexually, as well as the utilization of service provider systems in perpetrating such crimes.

The newly released video footage depicts the officers opening the door for the suspect, who promptly brandished a firearm. A struggle ensued, culminating in the fatal shooting of the suspect by the police. The suspect was pronounced dead at the scene, according to authorities.

It’s like they say in Texas, “Some folks jus’ plain need killin’”, a legal justification for putting a miscreant down for good.


And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where it’s beginning to feel more like spring, the sun is setting later and rising earlier, and where once again Monday is returning.


Surface Temperature Measurements Are Still Inaccurate

About ten years ago I wrote about problems with the reporting stations used to measure temperatures around the US and how that problem was skewing the temperature readings. Comparing the readings from pristine stations, meaning “none of the stations are situated near urban areas, parking lots, HVAC exhausts, or other artificial means that will skew the temperature readings,” shows that temperature readings were suffering from the effects of Urban Heat Island effect.

One would think that with it being known that efforts would have been made to move the poorly positioned stations to better locations to get them away from the factors making accurate temperature readings impossible. But an across the US survey recently performed by Anthony Watts has shown that if anything the problem has gotten worse.

In 2009, and then again, as a follow-up, in 2022, detailed inspections with station location data and photographic evidence the problematic stations were done. Stations providing official climate data that were sited in locations where surrounding surfaces, structures, and equipment radiated stored heat or emitted heat directly biasing or driving the recorded temperatures higher than were recorded at stations in the same region, uncompromised by the well-known UHI (that is widely ignored by alarmists and official government agencies).

Of the sampling of hundreds of stations across the country Watts and his volunteer team documented in 2009, 89% were out of compliance for proper measurement practices. In 2022, with the second inspection, that number rose to 96%. The trip last week, while taking a smaller sample than the two previous efforts, approached 100% as out of compliance.

The video is lengthy, but is well worth the time to see how we really can’t trust the temperature data the “We’re All Gonna DIE!” climate cultists use to tell us we have to go back to an 18th Century existence or the Earth will become a second Venus.


Thoughts On A Sunday

I have to admit to feeling a little traumatized today seeing as I filed my Federal Income Tax return this morning. Not that it was difficult or time consuming. It was more seeing just how much of the pay I earned went to the Feddle Gummint, knowing it will be spent on stupid things while ignoring the important things. I did do a decent job ‘tuning’ my W4 a couple of years ago to ensure the amount of any refund (or additional taxes owed) would be small. I would rather have my money in my accounts rather than Uncle Sam’s accounts to use interest-free. My refund this year was in four figures...if you count two of those figures as decimal places, so I’ll leave my W4 the way it is for the time being.

To change the subject (and to get away from the tax trauma), spring cleaning has started here at The Gulch. We’re starting small, cleaning out the coat closet by taking winter coats, boots, gloves, scarves and hats out and moving them to a storage closet. Then it was a matter of rearranging some of the other contents and getting rid of the winter detritus.

After that we went through the pantry/laundry room, removing some items that were better stored away in one of the attics. (Yes, we have two attics at The Gulch, one accessible from the house and the other from the garage.) These are things like Tupperware containers, pots, pans, and other kitchen related items that are used, but only once or twice a year during one of the holidays. This freed up space and the pantry is now less crowded and it’s easier to find things and keep things clean.

I will soon be starting on the house attic as there are lot of things there the WP Mom no longer needs and that she wants to give to Goodwill or St. Vincent de Paul. There are also things I have there I should have disposed of prior to departing from The Manse but ran out of time to take care of prior to the move to The Gulch. Then it will be time to take care of the attic garage, but most of that work will be rearranging things that are already there, mostly Sterilite containers full of seasonal stuff. Winter stuff will go in as summer stuff comes out. (Some of that ‘summer stuff’ is gear for the Official Weekend Pundit Lake Winnipesaukee Runabout which, if everything goes as scheduled, will be going back in the water sometime during the send full week of May.)

And so it goes.


One has to ask how well California’s Fast Food Worker’s Minimum Wage law is working out for those who were supposed to receive the higher pay? So far, I’d have to say it isn’t working out at all, at least not for the fast food workers.

This week, your humble correspondent has witnessed another tranche of elitist Democrats ruin the lives of thousands of people and pretend everything's fine.

In California, Democrats forced a 25% pay increase for fast food workers and workers learned the hard way about being priced out of a job.


Welcome to California, where between Bidenomics inflation and Gavin Newsom's new $20/hour fast food worker minimum wage has caused cheap fast food to become unaffordable, especially to the people who either got their hours cut or lost their fast food jobs completely.

Take a bow, fellas.

Hence, on March 25, Gavin Newsom plunged headlong into a 25% increase in the cost of labor for fast food employees.

This effort to kill small businesses and jobs harkens back to AB5, California Democrats' attempt to kill off private contracting for the sake of their union paymasters.

First, AB5 killed the so-called “gig economy”, something that didn’t need to be done. Carve outs had to be made for independent truckers because if it hadn’t been done California’s trucking industry would have collapsed and its economy with it. But still, a lot of jobs went away. Many of the ‘gig’ workers moved out of state and continued to do their work from their new homes in Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas.

It seems all of the measures the California Assembly and Governor put forth keep punishing those who make the economy work, create job losses, falloffs in state revenues, generate huge budget deficits, and when that doesn’t work, they double down and make things even worse. However, for the California Democrats it’s working just fine because it allows them to virtue signal about how they’re helping the “little people”.


Mike over at Cold Fury points us to a piece about The Elite War on the American Middle Class, or as Mike calls it, “another war in which there are no rules.”

Being middle class in America used to mean something—something socially transformative, something even revolutionary. The American middle class represented a form of national social order never before seen on this earth—cultural domination not by the very rich and very educated, or the political domination either by tyrants or the mob, but by a mass of people, relatively well-to-do, who felt themselves fortunate in their circumstances. That was what made the American middle class different from the French or English bourgeoisie. Its members believed, and the country believed, that they were the nation’s backbone, its true governing class, and its moral compass.

Throughout most of the 20th century, the term “middle class” signaled membership in an optimistic and growing group, most of whom had risen within memory from physically laborious jobs in farming or on factory floors to offices and small businesses they ran themselves. The middle class had enjoyed long periods of prosperity and stability, and each generation of politicians, on the left and the right, had enthusiastically pandered to it because they were the American majority, and it was from the American majority you could build a political consensus and a political coalition.


Rather than be catered to by the elites who seek to make their living off their tastes and wants, the middle class is more likely to hear the elite talk about it as a problem: Middle-class Americans are racist, they complain too much about how expensive everything has become, and they won’t get on board either with the left’s social-engineering schemes or the populist right’s rage-driven apocalypticism.

They are told that “no human is illegal” and that their concerns about an open border are evidence of their own bigotry. They see the poor and other designated “oppressed” receive sympathetic elite attention and government subsidies and programs, and services aimed at helping them. The elite champion the rights of criminals, illegal immigrants, and destructive Black Lives Matter activists who want to dismantle the police. They tell the rest of the country that they must call the homeless the “unhoused” and ignore any quality-of-life effects from that population’s drug use or instability. When the middle class complains, the elite often chide it for having fallen prey to “misinformation” or excessive “right-wing” media consumption.

We’ve been hearing that Biden (or rather WRBA) is working hard to grind down the middle class, and while I originally thought is was rhetoric, I can no longer think that as action after action taken by the the Biden Administration continuously whittles away at the middle class.

As Mike writes:

As are we all—everyone, that is, foolish and/or naive enough to still believe, as patriotic dupes, in the essential righteousness of a nation which in actuality bears little if any resemblance at all to the nation its Founding Fathers—whom its middle-class posterity still nonetheless justly admire and take great pride in—brought forth originally.

None of this has happened by accident, mind. The assault on and dismantling of the American middle-class and the nuclear family which is its backbone and practical foundation is Item One in the Marxist playbook, the crucial first step without which all else is pointless and futile.

If the middle class is eradicated, that will leave only the new nobility – our self-anointed Progessive elite – and the neo-serfs – the rest of us. It is the neo-feudalism of Marxist ideology and the Progressives are using every step in the Marxist handbook to erase the middle class.

Of course that might not work out quite the way they want and it is they who might find themselves on the wrong side of history...or better yet, on the ash heap of history.


Speaking of war, one has to look at the escalating war in the Middle East with Iran getting directly involved in the war between Israel and Hamas.

Iran fired 300+ cruise missiles, ballistic missiles, and drones at Israel. 99%+ of those missiles and drones were shot down by Israeli and US Navy anti-aircraft systems. At least Iran targeted military targets unlike their Hamas, Hezbollah, and Russian allies who have no problem targeting civilian infrastructure, facilities, and residences.

Of course SloJoe is trying to talk Israel into not striking back, something that Biden should stay away from. If nothing else it makes him sound more like he is Iran’s ally rather than Israel’s. Why is it that Israel, the country against which Hamas started a war, is the one everyone says must restrain themselves while their enemies continue their attacks on Israel.

This is a stupid war, one made possible by the Biden Administration, one that would not have happened if Trump were still in office.


And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the ice and snow from the last storm has all but disappeared, the rivers and streams are running high, and where boating season starts in a little over three weeks...for me.


Is Another Blue City Falling Victim To A Doom Loop?

It looks like another blue city is being added to the ranks of those entering the so-called “doom loop”. Joining the list that includes places like San Francisco, Portland, and Detroit is St. Louis, Missouri.

First, we must as define ‘doom loop’:

A doom loop describes a situation in which one negative economic condition creates a second negative condition, which in turn creates a third negative condition or reinforces the first, resulting in a downward spiral.

How is St. Louis entering this condition?

“The office district is empty, with boarded up towers, copper thieves, and failing retail,” reports the Wall Street Journal of Democrat-run St. Louis, Missouri. “[E]ven the Panera outlet shut down. The city is desperately trying to reverse the ‘doom loop.’”

Let’s look at the mayoral history of the doom-looping St. Louis, shall we?

Oh, look, there hasn’t been a Republican mayor in St. Louis since — not a typo — 1949. For 75 years, the people of St. Louis have voted for More of the Same, so excuse me if I don’t whip out a violin over all this unavoidable doom looping.

“Cities such as San Francisco and Chicago are trying to save their downtown office districts from spiraling into a doom loop,” writes the Wall Street Journal. “St. Louis is already trapped in one.”

I think San Francisco is already sliding into a doom loop. If New York doesn’t change course soon, particularly in light of the sham of a trial against Trump, it too will enter a doom loop. It is already seeing falling commercial occupancy, one consequence of the overblown Covid ‘precautions’ as Work From Home which made going into the office less attractive, particularly since many office jobs can be done from home as long as the employee has a decent Internet connection. (The case could be made that the WFH precaution during Covid was the first negative economic condition that started the doom loop.) That has certainly been the case in San Francisco and Seattle. What’s worse is that the commercial vacancy rate keeps climbing in all three cities. It has certainly been that way in St. Louis and increasingly in San Francisco.

The question is will these cities do what is need to stop their descent into a doom loop, or will they keep doing economically stupid stuff that makes things worse?

Something To Keep In Mind Come November

I still have my regular Saturday post in the works, but when I came across the following over at Instapundit, I knew I had to add it here, "it" being the this:

Donald Trump had Iran broke.

Joe Biden gave the Iran Regime hundreds of billions of dollars in sanctions relief, credit and cash.

Iran is now attacking Israel with Joe Biden’s money.

— Richard Grenell (@RichardGrenell) April 13, 2024

I’m getting angrier every hour with the Biden Administration.

They’ve ushered in multiple wars. They did this!

They must not just be defeated in November – they must be shown a humiliating defeat so that no Democrat ever supports radical Left policies.

— Richard Grenell (@RichardGrenell) April 13, 2024

It seems the Democrats are good at getting us involved in wars, directly or indirectly...and then abandoning the people we were helping (Afghanistan).

This pisses me off to no end.

(Delayed) Friday Funny - Firetrucks

Sorry about the delay but I had a bit of a brain fart and didn't realize that yesterday was Friday. I kept thinking it was Thursday...though I don't know why.

Without further delay:


Thoughts On A Sunday

The clean up after this past week’s Nor’easter continues as does efforts to restore power to the last of those still without it. Surprisingly the snow has been melting away pretty quickly, not unlike the snowstorm we had a couple of weeks ago. That we’re going to have temperatures in the 60’s on both Monday and Tuesday is certainly going to help speed things along.

One of the other things we’ll be dealing with on Monday is the total eclipse that will sweep across northern New Hampshire. Traffic traveling north is expected to be heavy both today and tomorrow as folks wishing to experience the total eclipse head into Grafton and Coos Counties to be in the path. Fortunately most of those affected by this past week’s Nor’easter were south of there so there shouldn’t be many problems caused by the storm up in those areas. It does mean lodgings are fully booked and restaurants, stores, and gas stations will be having well above normal patronage. It also means traffic will be well above normal as well.

I’ll be here at The Gulch as the eclipse starts. While not in the path of totality we will see a partial eclipse and that’s good enough for me. If I really want to see it I can catch it on our local TV channel. As long as I don’t have to travel to see it I’m good.


One subject of discussion that has popped again in the aftermath of the widespread power outages is why New Hampshire hasn’t buried its power lines to help reduce the probability of future outages. I can explain that with one two-word phrase:

Granite State.

New Hampshire’s nickname – the Granite State – exists for a reason, that being we have a lot of granite…everywhere. That means burying things like power lines can be difficult because in a lot of cases it will mean digging, drilling, and blasting to cut the trenches needed to bury those lines. They can’t be shallow in order to ensure safety as many of the distribution lines run at 3800 volts or more, something that can ruin your whole day if that electricity ‘escapes’ because someone did something stupid. It could require thousands of miles of trenches to be dug and cut through the rock in order to bury all of those power lines that can be buried.

While it would be nice to see most of the power lines and poles that go with them disappear, the question is whether it is worth the time, and more specifically, the money it would take. Then there’s a follow-on question that needs to be asked: Who would be paying for all of those power lines to be buried?


I found this rather amusing considering it is likely accurate.

Democrats Warned Not To Register Young Voters, ‘They’re Going to Vote for Trump.’

If that is indeed the case it means the Democrats will have to work harder to register the dead and non-citizens.

A confidential memo circulated among top Democratic donors has sparked a furious debate in Democratic circles about whether to narrow the focus of voter registration efforts to avoid signing up likely Republicans.

For decades, nonpartisan groups allied with the Democratic Party have run wide-ranging efforts aimed at increasing voter registration among people of color and young people — groups that tend to lean Democratic but have historically voted at lower rates than older and White people.

In recent years, however, there has been a marked shift among the roughly 1 in 5 citizens of voting age who are unregistered toward Republicans, raising fresh questions about how much boosting nonpartisan voter registration could help presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump heading into November.

[Strauss] also warned that efforts to gain Democratic votes among younger and non-Black people of color were often expensive — costing more than $1,200 per net vote in 2020, by one estimate — because the groups now include so many non-Democrats. Among voters of color, he wrote that “only African American registration is clearly a prime opportunity,” adding that netting Democratic voters among Black people cost approximately $575 per vote in 2020.

And where did the DNC get the money to offset those costs?


A great quote from Lincoln Brown that gets right to the point:

What irks us is that you [Progressives] are not content to live your lives as you see fit. You demand that we live our lives as you see fit.

They want us to sit down, shut up, and do what they tell us to do. We won’t do that because we know they are mentally ill, live in a delusional world of Marx’s making, and will have no problem eventually imprisoning or murdering us to get their way. Sic semper tyrannus.


Common Cents Blog asks the question “Is California Going Red?”

Possibly...but I always figured that would happen by the coastal counties being kicked out of the rest of California once they had enough of the delusional Marxists presently running the state into the ground. Every time I’ve thought the California Assembly and the Governor couldn’t get get any crazier/stupider, they prove me wrong. At some point the sane people have got to reach the point where they’ve had enough and they make those blue counties a separate entity – preferably a foreign entity – and let the red counties get back to business without interference from their self-anointed ‘betters’.

However, one thing that is giving some people hope is that a Republican – Steve Garvey – is leading the vote count in the primary race for the upcoming US Senate race in November. Could this be but the first step in California shifting back to the right?


It looks like yet another blue city is learning the lesson of the Law of Unintended Consequences, that city being Minneapolis and their making sure Uber and Lyft drivers lose their jobs with an ill-advised ordinance that was supposed to ‘help’ those same drivers.

I want to strike a Nietzschean note in this comment on the rideshare ordinance enacted by the City of Minneapolis this past month. Under the ordinance, Uber and Lyft would be required to pay drivers a minimum rate of $1.40 per mile and 51 cents per minute to ensure that they earn the equivalent of local minimum wage of $15.57 per hour — effective May 1. The city council overrode the mayor’s veto to enact the ordinance.

Uber and Lyft would be required to comply with the ordinance, that is, if they are still around on May 1, but they will both be out of Minneapolis by then. Indeed, Uber will depart the entire Twin Cities metropolitan area.

The ordinance represents an exercise in the pure Nietzschean will to power. It resolves a nonproblem with a law that destroys thousands of jobs providing millions of rides. NRO quotes a local Lyft drivers speaking of his fellow contractors pushing the ordinance as “just absolutely lazy people.”

Yet another example of the willfully ignorant making economic decisions they are not qualified to make which have real world consequences for constituents they care nothing about...until the next election cycle. Uber and Lyft will be pulling up stakes with Uber also pulling out of neighboring St. Paul.

One of the ironies is that just over 60% of the drivers are immigrants, with most of them being male and African. Now their jobs are going away courtesy of the Minneapolis City Council. (The mayor vetoed the ordinance, but the city council overrode his veto.)

Another irony is that Minnesota’s governor Tim Walz, a Democrat, sees the problem and has excoriated the Minneapolis City Council for “magical thinking” that a new rideshare app will just appear out of thin air to replace Uber and Lyft.


And that’s the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the clean-up continues apace, preparations for the upcoming boating season have resumed, and where Monday is going to show us just how bad it can get by making sure the sun goes out in the middle of the afternoon.


Non-Winter Winter Weather

This winter that just passed was a one heck of a disappointment as we didn’t see nearly as much winter weather as we usually do up here in New Hampshire. There wasn’t nearly as much snow as is normal. We didn’t have the usual sub-zero temperatures. Instead we had warmer than normal temps and quite a bit of rain. (Actually, a lot of rain.)

Then in a period of not quite two weeks we had two snowstorms, each dropping about 18 inches of snow. The first one wasn’t all that bad with the snow being ‘normal’ snow – not the supper fluffy really cold weather type of snow but still light in weight. The second one was nasty with heavy wet snow and high winds which took down trees and power lines all over the state, with around 200,000 customers without power at one point. We here at the The Gulch were one of them. Almost 85% of our town lost power.

Our power went out around half-past 7am Thursday morning before the height of the storm. Fortunately I had prepared the Official Weekend Pundit Portable Generator ahead of time and it only took about 2 minutes to get it up and running and the power switched over. Fortunately we still had cable so the WP Mom could catch her TV shows and I could continue working from home. And then the cable went out and TV and Internet went away that afternoon. (Fortunately for me I had the foresight to be working from local copies of the documents I was creating so the loss of the ‘Net didn’t prevent me from continuing my work).

Friday morning dawned and power was still out. I had to venture out to get more propane for the generator and fortunately the roads were in good shape. The only time I had to use 4WD was getting out of the driveway.

Driving down to our local Tractor Supply Company store to refill the empty propane tank was easy...but the number of trees I saw that had torn free from the ground or broke off above the ground was mind boggling. That certainly explained the power/cable/telephone outages. (Yes, I called the TSC store on my cell phone to see if they were open and able to fill propane tanks before I left The Gulch.)

On my second foray out later that morning I did a little exploring and found the where the power lines and fiber optic cables that feed out part of town were taken out. A huge tree had broken off about 8 feet up the trunk and took out the lines...and the two power poles to either side of where it came down.

It was amazing to see what heavy wet snow and wind can do between downed trees and power lines, blocked roads, and damaged homes.

We were fortunate that our power and cable were restored early yesterday evening so we were out for a day-and-a-half. Others are still without power and many will not see power back until Sunday at the earliest.

This is one of the problems with spring snowstorms, particularly if they are Nor’easters. They are often just like what we experienced on Wednesday and Thursday – heavy wet snow, high gusty winds, and widespread power outages.

Hopefully we won’t see any more between now and when I put the Official Weekend Pundit Lake Winnipesaukee Runabout back into the lake in mid May.


Friday Funny - What Is This "We" You're Talking About?

This post almost didn't take place as we were still recovering from a Nor'easter that dumped 19 inches of heavy wet snow and knocked out power and access to the Internet. Fortunately both were restored a couple of hours ago after being out for a day-and-a-half.