20 hours ago
Wednesday, October 31, 2012
How do I know?
Oh; just a wild guess.
But a rather informed one.
Like my post the other day discussed, The election will most likely boil down to Ohio, and Ohio will boil down to Hamilton County.
And less than a week from Election Day Obama cancels a rally in Hamilton County.
The published polls are showing a Romney surge, and like we discussed the other day as well, what are the internal polls showing?
I think this cancellation shows what the internals are showing.
Obama's decision to stay in Washington to "deal with Hurricane Sandy" is, in my opinion, a euphemism for the euphemism of 'wanting to spend more time with his family'.
I ain't pouring the bourbon yet, but I am pulling a dusty old bottle down off the shelf and polishing up a bourbon glass.
Monday, October 29, 2012
As you may know I have 5 sons, 4 of whom are eligible to vote in this election. I'm not concerned about which way they will be voting; all five of my sons have sent me anti-Obama items. They are all registered to vote and are ready to send Obama back to Chicago.
The question is why? Why are these members of their generation so against government giveaways?
Maybe it’s because they all have jobs and all pay taxes. Maybe it’s because none of them have been contaminated by college. Maybe it's because they have worked for everything they have, and see how much more they could have, if they were allowed to keep more of what they earned. Nobody ever gave them anything; they don't have the receiver mindset.
That's the way they were raised; you want something, then you earn it. From a candy bar when they were 5 to fancy sneakers when they were 17. I kept them fed, clothed and housed. Santa made his periodic visits and birthdays were honored, but $20 shoes were the budget. You want Air Jordans? Then you earn and spend the other $80. I don't think any of my boys spent that $80 the second time. The amount of effort that went into earning that money was not worth the value of the shoe.
Oscar Wilde once said that "A cynic is a man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing." I would argue that a liberal is the same; they know the value of nothing, because everything has been handed to them.
Look at our current President; what has he ever earned? Certainly not his college positions, up to and including Harvard Law review. Certainly not any of his elected offices, most of which he got by eliminating the opposition prior to reaching the voting booth. The Presidency? Remember; he ran against John McCain, probably the weakest Republican candidate since Taft in 1916.
How many democrats are that way? Were handed everything they ever had, from their first car to their college education, to their first job? Maybe that’s why democrats/liberals/progressives seem to think everybody is entitled to everything- they didn’t earn anything, so it’s unfair to make somebody else earn something?
I could be way off base. But I do wonder; has anybody done a poll showing how many folks with student loan debt are voting for Obama, as opposed to those with student loan debt and a job?
Sunday, October 28, 2012
Everyday more and more troubling information comes out about the attack in Benghazi on September 11th of this year.
At first it seemed like just a typical Obama Administration bungle and press compliant coverup. But everyday the news gets worse and worse for Obama and his minions.
Initially it was a demonstration gone bad; a story they stuck with for two weeks. When enough information leaked out to prove that narrative false, even to their own press corps, they changed stories, without a hint of embarrassment or explanation.
We knew from the beginning about the 4 dead Americans, including our ambassador to Libya. But everyday brings new details about how they died, why they died, and how Obama left them to die.
I'm not going to link to anything; if your are interested you will know the links already. If you're not, then you wouldn't follow the links anyway. But if this is the first you have heard some of these facts, don't take my word for it; a simple internet search will bring you more than enough information.
Just don't expect any of it to be on CNN, MSNBC or any of the Lame Stream Media sites. They still believe Obama called this an Act of Terrorism in a speech on September 12th, because he happened to say the word TERRORISM at some point in the speech.
You know 4 Americans died. Did you know the US Ambassador was killed not instantly, but slowly and deliberately? And that his body was dragged through the streets of Benghazi for hours?
The two former SEALS that died; did you know they disobeyed direct orders from the US State Department not to get involved?
Did you know their actions saved the innocent lives of 20 embassy staffers, while killing 60 of the attackers?
Contrary to their story of Lack of Information, Obama and his State Department and his Defense Department heads were able to watch the entire attack unfold in real time from cameras in the compound and the camera in a Predator drone that was circling overhead?
Did you know that this attack, that lasted 7 hours, could have been stopped by a rapid response team, specifically created to address these types of emergencies?
Did you know that team was less than an hour away by aircraft, and were specifically told not to become involved?
Did you know that in the days since this attack Obama has relieved of command and replaced both a Army General and a Navy Admiral, both of whom were in the chain of command of the response force?
We have 9 days left before we can count the votes; 9 days in which the wheels will come off of this entire fiasco.
Do you see now why every time you open a free app on your cell phone you have an Obama ad begging you to vote early?
So he can have you of record before all of this mess can be laid exactly where it belongs?
Right at his arrogant feet.
Saturday, October 27, 2012
For some reason yesterday I was in the mood for a James Bond movie. I wanted Thunderball, but Netflix didn't have it. So we watched The Man With The Golden Gun. You know one Bond movie is pretty much like any other. Good-lookin' half dressed women, car chases and stunts, and a super villain Bond needs to kill to make the world safe for humanity or democracy or some other noble goal.
It is a good Friday Night Movie. It does do a little preaching about running out of oil, but it was filmed and released in 1974, right at the height of the OPEC oil embargo caused energy crisis, so I guess a little preaching isn't to bad, especially since the premise of the movie is for Bond to retrieve a stolen device that would allow the efficient harvesting of solar energy.
The car chase is great, including the scene where Bond flips a car 360 degrees laterally while jumping a river to get at the bad guy. The funny part was the Bad Guy was driving a 1974 AMC Matador, while Bond was driving an AMC Hornet, and the cops were driving AMC Sedans.
In Hong Kong no less. I never realized AMC was such a popular brand in the Far East.
And of course at some point Bond has to get captured by the evil doers, who, instead of a quick bullet to the head and dump the body in the ocean process, decide to have a school of martial artists kill Bond. I guess it was graduation test maybe? Anyway, as usual, Bond takes a few knocks and then manages to escape the evil clutches, it this case with the help of a couple of teenage martial artists, who just happen to be girls, who manage to defeat 30 or so members of the dojo. The evil doers apparently are having trouble finding good help.
The final showdown is not as thrilling as some, but still fun to watch as the bad guy gets his. and then of course Bond rescues the device and the girl and escapes on a just happens to be handy Chinese Junk.
Its not the best of the Bond films- in fact most reviews call it the worst of the series because of the comedy that had been inserted- but hey, a bad Bond film is till better than 90% of the other junk out there.
And I liked the comedy aspect. I've said many times I watch movies to be entertained, and The Man With The Golden Gun does just that. Fast paced, it never drags, and jumps from one piece of excitement to another without time to fetch a beer.
I also found a couple of other Bond films on Netflix, so I may have a few more James Bond nights at the movies. But I doubt I'll write reviews, unless I see one that lacks good-lookin' half dressed women, car chases and stunts, and a super villain Bond needs to kill to make the world safe for humanity or democracy or some other noble goal.
Friday, October 26, 2012
Here is a great (and fairly balanced) article on where this race will boil down to.
Basically the author believes that for Romney to win he needs to have more Republican voters turn out in Hamilton County Ohio than Democrats turn out in Cuyahoga County Ohio. Some very interesting numbers in the article.
Such as 916,000 registered voters in Cuyahoga County. Out of a population of 1,270,294; 22.3% of which are below the age of 18, 283,276 residents. 1,270,294 minus 283,276 equals 987,018, more simply, over 92% of the eligible folks in Cuyahoga County are registered to vote. Amazing number ain't it?
Given the same rate for the entire state (population 11,544,951; Sal-ute!), there would be 8,217,419 voters in the State of Ohio as of October 2012, there were about 7.7 million registered voters. Quite a difference; about half a million voters. State wide only 87% of eligible residents are registered to vote.
But in primarily Democratic Cleveland, 5% more.
Hell, Cuyahoga County is so corrupt even the press had to finally take notice. And these are just the guys they caught.
So; it looks like the entire election between Romney and Obama will be determined by whether or not Cuyahoga County is still as corrupt as it was in 2008/2010.
I am being to see why the Dems are so confident of a victory, no matter what the polls say.
Wednesday, October 24, 2012
We are now less that 2 weeks away from the election that will decide the fate of the country. I hope.
I say I hope, because I am hoping Romney WILL change the course of the country, and not just be Obama Lite, and just send us down the road to a Socialist Hell more slowly. I have hopes, but I also have doubts.
I also believe Romney will win. If Obama didn't have his willing accomplices in the press and the lingering doubts that there will be massive voter fraud in every key state this election would not even be close.
If Obama had the press badgering him on high gas and energy costs, like they did Bush, and constantly dragging the issue of homelessness into the limelight, again, like they did with Bush, and fabricating a scandal out of every decision they didn't like, again, like Bush, this would be a landslide of Reaganesque proportions.
But they're not, won't and it wont be.
With this administration they wouldn't have to manufacture a scandal; hell; they have any number to pick from. Fast and Furious; Benghazi; Acorn; Black Panthers. And those are just off the top of my head.
But not a word. I guess if CBS can't create some 'Fake , but Accurate" documents for the scandal, they're not interested.
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
First; sorry for missing yesterday's post. My refrigerator broke and I had to work on fixing it. I was just putting it back together when the wife and I received a call we have been expecting: Grandson #3 was here, so we bailed to the hospital. Afterward I sat on the back porch with a cold beer and a cigar, enjoying the weather.
So, I had my very good reasons.
And now; last night's debate.
I'll be honest; after about a half hour I turned off the TV and just listened on the radio. After another 20 minutes I was asleep.
Who do I think won? Hell; I don't care who won. Romney whupped butt in the first debate, and won the second as well. Let Obama win this one; he'll need a consolation prize.
But I saw this quote a few minutes ago:
OBAMA: “You mentioned the Navy, for example, and that we have fewer ships than we did in 1916. Well, Governor, we also have fewer horses and bayonets, because the nature of our military’s changed. We have these things called aircraft carriers, where planes land on them. We have these ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines. And so the question is not a game of Battleship, where we’re counting ships. ”
How much less could Obama understand Naval Operations?
Admittedly, my understanding of Nav Ops is from reading Tom Clancy and playing Civilization, so I am not an expert by any means.
Has anybody ever heard of a carrier Task Force? We may talk about sending a Carrier into the Persian Gulf, but we don't send just one ship, we send a couple of dozen. Some are for the defense of the carrier, and some are for the supplies the ships will need; fuel, armaments, food- anything that will be need to keep the group afloat and on the move.
Right now we have 11 Carrier Task Groups. Lets just assume 10 ships to each group; 110 ships all told. almost half of Obama's current Navy. Sure the Carriers are the most important ships in the Navy, but we also need troop and tank carriers, tankers and freighters and a dozen other styles of ships I know nothing about, plus the subs and their tenders.
How can some redneck in Kentucky have a better grasp of naval operations than the President?
Part of the issue with numbers of ships is we can't have just one of something. Ships are tools. Assume I have one 3/4 inch wrench in my tool box. It is a popular size, and almost constantly in use. When I lose that wrench I have nothing to replace it with, and all of the jobs I needed a 3/4 wrench for I am now unable to do.
What happens to our ability to perform when we have one guided missile cruiser, and we need that cruiser in both the China Sea and the Persian Gulf? or we need it in the China Sea, but it was sunk in the Persian Gulf?
I have said many times that the sole legitimate purpose of the Federal Government is the protection of our borders, and the United States Military is the sole tool we have for that purpose.
The weaker Obama makes our protection, the more threats we have to face, and the fewer resources we will have to address those threats.
I'm not saying we don't need to prepare for the changing threats we will face in the future.
But by the same token, don't ignore current threats while you do.
By the way, I love Romney's face in that image; he looks like Law Professor, letting a student who has no idea what he is talking about run off at the mouth while the rest of the class is gradually realizing that the student they thought was a genius has just exposed himself as an ass.
Sunday, October 21, 2012
Yesterday I had to buy a new desk chair. I didn't want to buy a new chair, and thus help enable Obama's economic recovery, but I was forced to. See what happened is this.
There I was Friday night, typing assiduously away on my blog post, and I leaned back in my chair. That caused the air piston to break out the bottom of its seat, down in the wheeled base of the chair and push through to the floor. since my weight was 70% behind the piston, it had the force advantage, and pushed me over backwards. One minute I am typing away; the next I am laying on my back, in my chair with my feet caught up in the knee hole of my desk.
I had no idea what happened or why. None of the kids were around- that would have been my first choice, blaming them- and whats worse; none of the kids were around, so I was kinda caught. It took a minute to wiggle around enough to get my feet out of desk, and then roll over so I could stand up. That's when I saw the air cylinder rod poking 18 inches out of the bottom of the chair.
Just so we are all on the same page, most modern desk chairs have a gas pressurized cylinder, like the ones that hold open your trunk lid or hatchback on a mini van, inside the base. This is what makes then adjustable. Usually the piston is bolted to the bottom of the wheel assembly, and the seat rides on the bottom of the cylinder. pulling on the lever on the side of the chair allows some gas to escape from under the bottom of the piston to above the piston, so the chair will lower. Pulling the same lever with the seat empty allows the gas to go below the piston, raising the seat. Okay; that's probably more that you really wanted to know about office chairs.
So yesterday I went shopping. Wal-mart had a good deal on a chair. Like I said; I didn't want to buy a new chair, but my other options were a metal folding chair or an old bentwood chair with a 10-inch round seat; neither were really viable for long term sitting, like the hour or so I need to create a post.
I'm still not comfortable in my new chair. I had the old one better than 10 years. We were old friends. Evey paper I wrote for college was done in that chair. Most of my blog posts were written there as well. I spend a lot of time at my desk when I'm home; working from home on some occasions, or just writing and reading from the internet. That chair is custom fit to me, after 10 years of use. The new one; eh, not so much. But it might fit better eventually. After 4 or 5 years of use.
But you see what finally motivated me to contribute to the Obama Economy; I literally had to be knocked to the floor before I would spend a dime.
Saturday, October 20, 2012
Skimming through Netflixs Friday night I ran across a movie I saw a couple of times a few years ago and kind of liked, Beer For My Horses. so I watched it again.
This is my kind of movie. Good music- all Country- some great action sequences, laugh out loud funny in parts, and some weird characters showing up from time to time. Cameo appearances by some old-timers, like Willie Nelson, Mel Tillis, David Alan Coe and Mac Davis also add a little something. Co-written by, and starring Toby Keith, it is exactly what a Friday night movie should be; FUN.
Needless to say, it fulfills my prime directive; a good story, competently told.
Toby Kieth plays an Oklahoma Sheriff's Deputy who busts a Mexican drug lord's little brother stealing fertilizer to make crystal meth. The drug lord kidnaps Toby's girlfriend to trade for his little brother. Toby and two of his deputy friends (Ted Nugent and Rodney Carrington, who also co-wrote the film) kidnap the brother from jail and take him south to make the trade.
Like any good road trip, they run into some crazy characters along the way. The scene with Rodney Carrington in the rest area men's room is an instant classic. Rodney does provide most of the films comic relief. Trying to train his dog to be a drug dog by having him sniff out aspirin is another example or his activities at the initial drug bust; classic humor.
Ted Nugent does a good job too, as Deputy Skunk Travers. He says two words in the entire film, and those are at the end. Skunk tends to let his weapons do the talking for him. From the pair of machine guns he lights up at one point to a sling and stone he uses with great effectiveness at another, Skunk is never at a loss for a weapon or the skill to use it.
The gunfight at the end in a Mexican saloon provides some twists and turns to the plot that I'm not going to reveal, but everything wraps up well. The drug dealers go to jail; the girl gets rescued and everybody enjoys a cold beer.
What better way to spend Friday night?
I was going through Ft. Thomas again the other day and did another sign count. This was a different route, so I saw different signs.
This time no Obama. A few Romney, but more of the down ticket signs. But do you know what sign outnumbered them all?
For Sale signs. If I saw one I saw a dozen. They were everywhere.
Most of these homes were in the $120,000 to $350,000 range; mostly older homes, in the 70-110 year range, but a couple newer.
But what do the signs mean?
Are these the signs of a recovering housing market, or are they the signs of desperation, folks finally giving in? That is a key question. The answer is, who knows?
Personally I don't think it is a recovery sign. The ones I looked at were all listed near their Tax appraised value, and all were privately owned; no foreclosure dumps. All had been owned by the current owners between 6-10 years, and all were listed for very near what they had been purchased for a few years previous. That may sound like good news, but this area never had the massive run-up in values that some other parts of the country had.
Here is what I think; I think that after 4 years of sitting on their hands and checkbooks, people are figuring this is the new normal, and its time to get on with their lives. They aren't scared anymore. I also think there is a little optimism showing. Folks are seeing a recovery coming, and are preparing for it.
It also depends on what you see as a 'Recovery'. Anyone expecting a return to the 1990's will be disappointed. Unless something drastically changes, a change I don't foresee, housing is no longer a short-term investment.
There is a lot riding on November 6th. I sincerely hope we are on our way back. It won't be easy, and I see a lot of fiscal pain in our future. Reagan did it once, 30 years ago. Can Romney do it again?
Thursday, October 18, 2012
Lets say you own a farm. Lets say there is a creek running through that farm. Lets say you need a wheelbarrow full of gravel to fill a pothole in your gravel driveway. Lets say you take your wheelbarrow down to the creek and fill it full of gravel, and dump that gravel on your driveway.
Did you know you have just broken Kentucky law?
I heard a blurb about this on the radio and had to look it up to be sure; yep. Its true.
The blurb had a few more details, such as the permit you need to 'mine' gravel from your creek will cost you $150, plus a $500 per acre bond, plus you will need a attorney to file for the permit.
Because you did not spend $150 on the permit, another $500 on the attorney, and yet another $500 plus for the bond before you 'mined' your wheelbarrow of gravel from your creek, you now face a $5,000 fine.
What has happened to the free country I was born in?
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
I reached another milestone today; 10,000 page views for the blog, since my first post in November of 2006; almost 6 years ago.
I just had to share with you folks, after all, your the ones who have done these views, not me.
The STATS page on Blogger has some interesting features. Like it will tract what country the viewer is from. As of today I have 6496 visits from folks in the good old USA. I'll bet you will never guess what country is second?
Its Russia! 784 views. Then the UK, Germany and Canada, each with about 250. And just this week I had 4 visitors from Qatar. Don't ask me why; What could I be writing that could interest someone, or 4 someones, in Qatar?
Another interesting point; Blogger also tracks what keyword was searched that brought the searcher to the site. Top Word?
Who Farted; 191 searches.
And no, it wasn't me.
Well, there's two hours of my life I'll never get back. Apparently Obama tore a page out of Biden's debate prep book.
What an angry mess Obama was last night. I lost track of how many times Obama called Romney a liar. And each time Obama was the liar. Well, Obama or the moderator, Candy Crowley.
The many injuries of Fortuano, sorry, I mean Crowley... But the worst was her agreeing with the President on his terrorism remark on the Benghazi attacks.
How much worse can you get? Because when he was talking about the attack on the Benghazi he used the word 'terrorism' that means he called the attack a terrorist attack? Even though he used it in a completely different context? And was not used as a descriptor of the attack itself?
I guess he got lucky. Other wise they would have had to create the same conclusion by saying something like this:
"In 2011Obama used the words "Terror" and "Libya" in the same speech, and then in March of 2012 he said "Benghazi, Libya", so its plain he called attack an act of terrorism."
This same statement would have been parroted on every network and cable news channel. Even now they will claim this one random reference will mean more than the next 14 days of calling the attack a 'riot gone bad'.
Come on November.
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Well; time for some more self inflicted pain. Another round of Obama-Romney.
I have probably mentioned before that I always found the folks on the left who said they couldn't stand to hear George Bush's voice tiresome. He was the President; how could you hate a man you never met that much?
And then Obama was elected. I turned off his acceptance speech after less than 30 seconds; his voice irritated every nerve I had. In actual fact, I heard more of his voice two weeks ago in the first debate more than I have in his entire presidency. Combined.
And tonight I will force myself to listen to another 45 minutes of him, give or take 20 minutes, depending on when and if the moderator can shut him up.
Tomorrow's post will again be a review, but I expect Romney to again be the victor by a wide margin, even with two opponents; I fully expect the moderator to be Obama II, doing her best to keep Obama from looking like a complete moron again.
The talking head consensus is that Obama will do better because of the Town Hall format. I don't see why this format is any different than the more formal style, He still won't be able to use a teleprompter.
Monday, October 15, 2012
I was just 'owt and abowt' as the saying goes, and did a Romney- Obama sign count. I went through a fairly affluent area so I expected a few Obama signs. I saw two.
A few houses were displaying signs for other, local races, Like Sheriff and other county offices, but I didn't see a single sign for the Congressional race that going on for either side. I saw about a dozen Romney signs, which was unexpected. I figured where I was at was a liberal Democrat stronghold. Based on the Democrat for Sheriff signs I saw, it most likely is. But they ain't proud of it.
I also noticed that the campaign signs aren't bunched, on either side of the aisle; almost like nobody wants the top of the ticket to contaminate those further down.
And I can't even use the excuse that its early; Election Day is 3 weeks tomorrow.
This is going to be an interesting election. I think we are starting to see some enthusiasm for Romney, as opposed to just the Anti-Obama vote. But I don't think we are seeing much Average Joe enthusiasm for Obama. He has his rabid support- Unions, Gays and the other Democratic coalition fringe groups. but I think I am seeing the Reagan Democrats becoming Romney Democrats.
They know the direction the country is heading in is wrong, and just can't bring themselves to vote for another 4 years like the last.
Right now they are leaning away form Obama, but not yet Romneyites. Green Party, or maybe Libertarian, but not yet Romney. Not so much because Romney isn't an appealing candidate, but because he is a....; a....
How can they face their freinds and neighbors, knowing they voted for a....; a.....
Friends, and I am talking to those of you who can't bring yourselves to vote for a....; a....
It's a secret ballot! No one will ever know but you, and when the country turns around in the next four years you can smile to yourself in the mirror, and take credit some of the credit.
Sunday, October 14, 2012
I should really say Finale; we still have a few small things to do, but yesterday was the end of the trim work. We hung the crown molding.
As a devoted fan of This Old House I have watched crown molding go up many times. I knew the tricks. or so I thought. My son was willing to try it on his own, until after he had cut and hung the first piece. Then he called me. I figured we would start about 10 and be done about 12. Its a small bathroom; just 5 feet by 8 feet; shouldn't take long.
Well; except we ran into a problem or two.
Crown molding didn't seem that difficult to hang, and the last few pieces weren't. But that first piece; WOW.
Maybe a few explanations are in order. Most molding on walls is hung flat; like baseboards and chair rail. Where two pieces meet a simple miter joint is used. I say simple, but they are not simple to cut, sometimes. But a simple miter basically divides the 90 degree angle into two 45 degree angles, one 45 degree cut on each piece to be joined, and when put together they fill the 90 degree corner.
A miter will work well on either an inside corner or and outside corner (an inside corner is like one in the corner of a room; an outside corner is one that protrudes into a room). But there is a second method of creating an inside corner called a cope joint. A cope joint is where one piece of molding is left at a 90 degree angle and the piece that joins it is cut on the end to match the profile of the molding it is meeting. It sounds hard, but in practice isn't, because of a few tricks.
Coping crown molding is very similar, but completely different. I worked at least an hour on the first cope cut; cutting, test fitting, cutting again; test fitting again. Cutting AGAIN, and test fitting AGAIN. I could never get the joint to match up. Then I tried matching my cope cut up with a piece of molding not mounted on the wall. It matched perfectly. Then I moved my piece of molding around on the wall until I had a perfect match. I the realized the molding my son had hung wasn't at the right angle.
Crown isn't hung flat; it forms a 45 degree angle around the 90 degree angle of the wall and ceiling. The piece I was working off of wasn't at 45 degrees. By now I had a perfect left miter and a perfect right miter, so we pulled down the piece that was up and used our cut pieces to align it perfectly.
From then on it was smooth sailing. The first cut took over an hour; the last one took about 5 minutes. Because we put crown in the shower stall as well as the rest of the room we wound up with 6 cope joints and 2 outside miters. From first cut to final nail was about 4 and a half hours; twice what I originally thought. But from second piece of molding to final piece of molding was about an hour and a half. So I guess I have a 3 hour learning curve.
It was also made easier by my son having hung the first piece. If I would have hung it it would have taken a couple extra hours to convince me I had done the first one wrong.
All the while we worked my son kept telling me he could never be a carpenter; he didn't have the patience. Well; I didn't either at his age.
Friday, October 12, 2012
Well, I wasted an hour and a half last night watching Joe Biden make an ass of himself.
I don't know what else to say. Between Biden and the "moderator" I consistently got the impression that Paul Ryan was the only adult on the stage, and he was doing his best to pacify two recalcitrant children. even the tone of his voice was the same one I use to settle down a couple of 4 year olds.
I knew it wouldn't happen, but I kept hoping Ryan would get up and walk aver to Biden and drop him like a bad habit. If he had, I'll bet the audience would have broke out into applause.
I also don't know what was worse; mouthy half- crazy Biden from the start of the debate, or sanctimonious Joe from the final minutes.
If there was anyone besides a party hack who felt Biden even scored a point in that 'debate' it would surprise me. Was he even aware of what a debate is? The free exchange of ideas and the discussion of their merits?
Interrupting with "That's a lie" hardly fits that description.
After about 40 minutes I came to the realization that Biden was doing exactly what he was sent there to do. It wasn't to debate; it wasn't to try and convince the undecided voters to vote for Obama/Biden.
It was to drive viewers away, before they could hear about Ryan's ideas.
And he almost succeeded with me. 10:00 is my bedtime, and by 10:15 I was ready to flip the switch and stop raising my blood pressure because of Biden's juvenile actions.
But I didn't. And today, wished I had.
In less than 4 weeks we will make Obama/Biden into Lame Ducks. Heaven help us between now and then.
Apparently they are not Bourbon drinkers.
Actually, that probably explains a lot about their attitudes. The bunch of them were those priggish, tea-totaling do-gooders who feel they MUST protect you from yourself, and have never enjoyed a good shot of Kentucky's finest.
Anybody who would treat good bourbon like this has completely lost my respect.
Well, again. Well, not again. Again would imply they had regained my respect at some point.
More? They have lost more of my respect? No, that's not quite right either. How much lower can you go that utter contempt?
Well, I'll settle for any respect they have possibly earned in the future, they have already forfeited.
I guess that will have to do.
The other day I posted Business Math 101 (which, by the way, for some reason is already almost my most popular post of all time) and today we get to see the some real life examples of how business responds to increased costs.
Responses to Obamacare.
Olive Garden 2.
Yes, Obamacare is costing jobs. At least full-time jobs.
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Today on the way home from work my car hit 250,000 miles. I tried to get a picture of the odometer, but doing that while driving proved problematic. I couldn't get a clear shot for some reason. Quite a milestone I figure. Of course there are other cars out there with more miles. But for me, this is a record. The car itself is 20 years old, I've had it for 8 years and have put about half of those miles on myself. And I don't have any plans to retire The Bimmer.
She still runs great and doesn't rattle or smoke. There are a few problems, but what do you expect after 20 years and a quarter of a million miles? The drivers window tracks needs a little repair, and a few interior pieces are a little loose. But hey, I can fix those issues, given a weekend and a few bucks.
The Bimmer, which is officially a 1992 BMW 325i, joined the family when my neighbor leaned over the fence one evening and asked if I wanted to buy her car for $1,500. It needed a wheel bearing and a clutch, and she wasn't ready to spend the $2,000 her mechanic wanted for repairs. Parts ran me about $250, and the labor was free. Even after 8 years I still don't have as much actual cash in the car as it would be worth if I sold it. I figure I came out ahead.
This was the second foreign car I ever owned. I had my Jag in England, so it wasn't really foreign, and the Beetle, well Beetles aren't foreign anywhere. The Cortina; now that was foreign. Other wise I was all American, Usually GM, and Oldsmobile whenever I could.
I wasn't sure I would like driving a BMW. The car was actually going to be my eldest son's car. I paid the cash and he was making payments. while he was making payments I drove it all week, and he had the weekends. That way I could keep an eye on my investment, and he would have an incentive to make the payments in a timely manner.Then he ran into financial issues, and I was stuck with it, after a fashion.
My daily driver prior to The Bimmer was a Chevy Caprice Classic Station Wagon. It ran good and got decent gas mileage, for a land yacht. I was working in Downtown Cincinnati at the time, as was used to swinging the land yacht into and out of the small downtown lots. The first day in The Bimmer I was amazed at how small it was comparatively, and yet was large on the inside. The only other small cars I had ever ridden in were Japanese, and I was never comfortable. They seemed narrow and completely lacked legroom for the 6 foot-four inch me.
The Bimmer wasn't like that. With the driver's seat back I have plenty of room. The seat-back is touching the front of the backseat, so rear seat legroom is non-existent, but what do I care? I'm sitting in front.
Anyway, after 8 years and 100,000 miles I'm still happy and comfortable. I'm hoping for at least another 250,000 out of her. By then it might need another clutch.
Oh, and the picture isn't my car. Mine is the same color and style, but lacks the spoiler. I couldn't find a picture of mine that wasn't covered with kids.
102 years old, and still drives.....
Her 1930 Packard. 3 speed unsynchronized transmission, no power steering, no power windows.
My new hero.
I wonder if she has a Great-Granddaughter my age?
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
How about a quick lesson in business economics?
First; you have a business, selling the always popular widgets.
In order to make your widget you need 3 things: A place, materials and labor.
The place is first a capital cost, like your house. You have to either pay cash and tie up a lot of capital (Money); purchase with a loan and make a monthly payment, or rent. A mortgage or rent is a monthly cost that needs to be factored into the cost of your widget. If you tie up cash in the place then you are costing yourself the interest that money could make somewhere else, like the stock market. This is, for our example, COST A. We’ll say its $.25 a widget.
Then you need materials. Unless you are making your widget out of thin air, or a commodity that someone else is ready to give away to get rid of, materials will cost. And those costs will vary depending on a multitude of things, including the cost of the fuel to ship the materials to you. With a contract for delivery you can sometimes regulate the cost so it will be consistent over a year, but that is usually the best you can do. If fuel costs double in the course of 4 years, then your raw material cost may go up 5%-25%, depending on how fuel dependant the process is. And fuel is just one factor.
You also need to figure in equipment as a capital cost, unless your workers can walk in with bare hands and produce quality widgets. As well as other overhead costs like accountants, advertising, attorneys, support staff in the office that does not make widgets, but designs widgets, purchases materials for widgets and maintains the equipment that makes widgets.
This is COST B. We’ll say its $.25 a widget as well.
Then you need folks to make your raw materials into your widgets. Each employee will have a compensation package, consisting of hourly wage and benefits; plus the cost of taxation. For our argument our employee will make $1.00 an hour. So his hour of labor will cost you a buck, right?
Wrong. Social Security makes his hour cost you $1.07. And then you have the benefits. Two weeks vacation? $85.60, plus you need someone to replace the work while he is out. Call it another 5 cents an hour, spread out over the rest of the year.
Health insurance? And here we enter a whole new world of costs well beyond your control. This year the coverage per individual is $208 a year; about $.10 an hour (I love doing math when I can make up my own numbers), but what new regulation will the state or federal governments add that will raise costs? Assuming a 10% increase means the per hour cost of the policy goes to $.10 an hour. It doesn’t sound like much, but multiply that by 2080 hours a year (a 52 week, 40 hour work week) and then multiply by 100 employees. That penny an hour is now $2080.00 extra cost a year.
Let’s assume it takes a man an hour to make a widget. Labor is now $1.22 a widget. This is COST C.
So far we have $.25 plus $.25 plus $1.23; a total of $1.72 per widget.
Now we get to sell our widget.
We can sell our widget for $1.72, but that does not earn a profit. After all, as owner of the company you have capital tied up in the building and the equipment, plus you have to pay taxes. $1.75 is the least we can charge for a widget and make a profit.
Now we go see Martwall to sell them widgets. Our evil competitor is in another country, and even including the shipping costs from the other country, they can price their widgets at $1.77. We sell them at $1.76, undercut the competition and make a $.04 profit on each widget.
Until another new regulation hits, like say, OBAMACARE. Instead of insurance costing $.10 a widget, it now costs $.14 a widget. Not a problem; raise the cost of a widget by $.04. Except now we are more expensive than that foreign widget. If we do that, we can no longer sell widgets to Martwall. We have to hold the line at $1.76. We need to cut costs in order to still make a profit.
We can’t change buildings because of the capital tied up in the building and the cost of a move. We can’t cut material costs, in fact our suppliers are faced with a cost increase as well- same Obamacare- and are talking about raising prices to cover the hit to them.
Looks like labor will take the hit. But we won’t cut wages; we will just increase the cost of the insurance to the employee. Our costs will stay at $.10 for insurance an employee, but the employee, instead of taking home $1.00 for an hour’s work, now takes home $.96. And resents it.
He finds another widget maker, or a maker of getwids that will still pay the $1.00 and changes jobs.
This example is so simplistic I am almost ashamed of myself. But it does illustrate the vise employers are in. The value of what they sell, based on what the market will pay, pushes from one side, and the costs associated with making the product are pushing from the other side. And what’s left is what you, as the owner get to take home.
At what point do you take your capital, invest it in something else that will make easier money, with less work, and stop making widgets?
I ran into this article on my BING home page this morning. I normally don't read the bottom feeding Huffington Post, but I did find this article timely and interesting.
Basically because I said the same thing a couple of days ago.
The money quote, in my opinion:
A significant majority of the nones also believe that religious institutions are too focused on money, power, rules and politics.
Ain't that what I said?
Tuesday, October 9, 2012
There seem to be a lot of Obama chickens coming home to roost.
Most of them seem to be scandals of some type or kind; the most recent seems to be a replay of the campaign donation scheme from 2008. Apparently Obama's campaign makes itself available for illegal international donations by turning off a verification code requirements for its credit card on-line donations.
The Lame Stream Media haven't picked up on it yet (what a shocker!), but Fox and the talkers are full of it.
Here's that part that will sound funny; The Obama Campaign did the same thing in 2008. Ain't that a laugh?
So whats the downside? Obama had it all figured out. If he won, his Justice department wouldn't investigate him, now would it?
If he lost, McCain's Justice department wouldn't investigate; professional courtesy and/or you don't make the loser look worse by claiming he cheated, and cheated so poorly he still lost.
2012, and here we are again. Same campaign cheating. Same low risk of getting caught. If he wins, his Justice department won't investigate. If he loses, Romney will let the cheating slide, just like McCain would have.
And the value of a vote and an election just keeps getting cheaper. McCain, Romney, Obama, Boehner, Pelosi, McConnell: what do they care? They have their power, their wealth, their position. So what if a candidate cheats a little bit? Who does it hurt?
I'll tell you who it hurts. It hurts me and my children, and my grandchildren. The only power we have in this country comes to us through the ballot box. I don't like having that little bit of authority diluted even further by shenanigans, like illegal contributions, people voting more than once, or having a vote cast for them.
And when the people we have elected fail to take the value of that vote seriously, its just another mark against that value.
Where is the Federal Election Commission? Has there been a charge of illegality brought against the Obama campaign? If their is evidence, then why no charges? and if there have been charges, why is there no public outcry.
Allegedly Obama will raise and spend a billion dollars this election cycle.
A BILLION DOLLARS. $1,000,000,000.00. All of it spent legally, on ads and staff and offices?
Yeah; I bet.
And the value of my vote drops again.
Monday, October 8, 2012
Yesterday was a day of complete rest. I guess I still hadn't recovered from the long weekend I had last weekend.
Or maybe I'm coming down with something. Half the people in this house are sneezing and the other half have a hacking cough. I don't have either.
I did mange to get a bit of writing done, so that's something. Not that I was really happy with it. What I wrote is very workman like; it gets the story across, but not the emotion I want. It is good enough for a first draft, but now I need to go back and make the words dance. I can do it; I have faith in myself.
Speaking of faith, I saw a sign tonight on the way home advertising a Tent Revival. I just wonder how many folks will show up, and what the age range will be. I would guess the audience (congregation?) will be 90% women; 75% over the age of 60 and 100% devout, or at least intending to look that way. A church I pass on the way home had a sign up at one point that said "Church isn't a museum for saints; its a hospital for sinners". I have to agree.
The problem any more is too many people don't recognize they are sick I guess. I suppose I could be defined as one of them. I have never lost my faith in God, but I sure have lost my faith in Religion. I don't believe the selling of indulgences has ended; just taken a different form; almost like your faith in God has something to do with your dedication to the Religion.
That might be the other part of it. Religion is a Community, and a Community is made up of people. You can't just pray on your own; you have to become a part of the Community. Sorry; not a big fan.
Kind of like working from home; you are just as productive, or more so, but nobody can verify that you actually worked as hard and long as they did, so it doesn't count. To them anyway.
And the same folks that will smile, nod and shake you hand in the Pews, will run you over in the parking lot.
But such has it always been so, right?
But then an organized religion does have benefits. Time honored rituals and practices; ancient prayers murmured countless times by countless generations; the same procedure as old as time itself, provided you are using the Roman calendar, and the idea of Anno Domini.
I forget what book I was reading, but a couple of characters were talking about the concept of magic, and the idea that previous generations may have been able to perform spells; something the current folks can only dream about. The second character responded that each age gains a little knowledge, and loses a little knowledge; who can say what we have gained can equal what we have lost.
I say that knowing I am not the only one of my generation to have lost a faith in religion. The problem is now how to pass on the faith in God, without the rituals.
Saturday, October 6, 2012
I had several conversations with different folks about the Wednesday Night debate. All of them were interesting, but one point came up that I think needs more thought and exposition.
Romney's 47% comment.
The remark did not come up at the debate in actuality, but it was the reason, I think, behind Romney's comments on the poor. And that is what started me to thinking.
Who, or what, ARE The Poor?
We each will probably have a different definition and a different set of criteria to determine who is Poor, and even those definitions have change over the years.
Take for instance this woman. At what point was she poor? The article mentions no children, and she apparently was well off enough, prior to her lottery win, to enjoy both a drug habit and purchasing lottery tickets.
And yet the state of Michigan was paying her food and medical benefits; both prior to and after her win, approximately $550 dollars a month or so.
This is not to say that every person collecting government benefits is doing so fraudulently, but stories like this are not uncommon enough.
So; what is poor and at what level of poverty should you be entitled to some of my tax money?
The proverbial Welfare Queen; multiple children from multiple partners, second or third generation on the government dole? That's and easy one.
What about the young mother of 4 whose husband was recently killed in a car accident? That too is an easy one.
But from a statutory viewpoint, these two women are identical; single mother of preschool children. And that is where the problem starts. We can't ask how they became single mothers with children; that would involve 'value judgments'. We are not allowed to pass judgment on someone else's life style.
Yet poor is a lifestyle. Anyone who is collecting a government check is a non-producer, and it is that non-production that has created their poverty status. Although there are obvious exceptions, the people collecting those checks prefer that non-production status. The exceptions are those folks forced into non-production by age, medical reasons, or other circumstances beyond their control. They are also the ones working toward leaving that non-productive status; not creating another dependent generation.
So; what determines being poor? Is it lack of money? There are plenty of folks who lack money, but still work for a living. Maybe its a lack of assets? Lots of folks who are collecting government money own cars, game systems and flat screen TVs.
I have known folks who were collecting a small amount of money from a government check, but that amount was enough to support the lifestyle they wanted; a room with a TV, snacks and enough left over for illegal intoxicants. Working was not an option, as it would not have provided anything additional to their lifestyle, and actually would have cut into the amount of time they had to enjoy their TV and snacks.
That's not to say they wouldn't have enjoyed a bigger TV or better snacks; they just weren't willing to work for them.
The problem becomes how do we end Welfare for the never married mother of four, without ending it for the young widow with four children? How do we make someone who has never sought to be a producer want to become a producer?
I don't think we have anyone in this country who doesn't want to do their part to support folks who need it. But how many of us are willing to support people who are just unwilling to become producers on their own?
Those people who want to be a part of the 47%, and not the 53%.
Friday, October 5, 2012
Am I the only one to notice the how convenient the new Unemployment numbers were?
I didn't think so. I don't think Obama is even fooling his choir in the Lame Stream Media this time.
Just how much more can we accept? These numbers are supposed to be facts; not partisan playthings that the President can shuffle around as he pleases.
How far are we from a puppet regime when the facts and figures we trust to be honest, and are drivers of the economy, are used as political toys?
This will come back to bite Obama in the ass. People, even the sycophantic lefties in the Lame Stream Media don't like being used.
The real numbers will come out. We will have our 44th month of over 8% unemployment.
And Obama will be left mumbling, with egg on his face.
Hopefully all this will happen before November 6th, but if we depend on the LSM to make it happen, I have my doubts.
Thursday, October 4, 2012
What is there to say?
Romney looked like he was enjoying himself, and Obama looked like he was undergoing a root canal.
There were a couple of times I saw this:
And thought this:
Hopefully I wasn't the only one.
Romney was short on specifics; Obama was long on ........ 'Inaccuracies'; inaccuracies that Romney was calling him on. McCain never challenged Obama. Romney did, and it threw Obama off his game.
Early polls show Romney as the winner; I find that easy to believe.
If Obama does just as well in the second debate in two weeks, don't look for a third debate; instead look for a 'CRISIS' to develop, meaning the debate will be 'postponed'.
I watched last night hoping Romney could sell me.
So far I'm not sold. But I'm not leaving the store either.
Wednesday, October 3, 2012
The Debates; Chapter One.
I said awhile back I would need to watch the debates, not to make up my mind, but to see if Romney can sell me on him.
And to watch the Train Wreck that I hope Obama becomes.
Or would; if we had a fair and balanced press.
As is, I expect the questions to be more like this:
Gov. Romney; please explain in detail in 2 minutes how you intend to fix the economy.
President Obama; please describe the best breakfast you have had in the White House.
Gov. Romney; please explain in detail how you intend to repair the healthcare crisis.
President Obama; have you ever shot a hole in one?
Gov. Romney; how does it feel to be such an incredibly successful Presiden... Sorry; wrong question. Gov. Romney; who do you intend to bring unemployment down to less than 4%?
I guess you see where I'm going with this?
The Presidential debates will be a chore for me to watch, but I'll do it.
The Vice Presidential debate should be interesting. Especially if Biden gets asked who exactly has been murdering the middle class for the last 4 years.
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Well; the weekend kicked my butt. I am still sore and tired. Hopefully I will recover in time for round two this weekend.
This past weekend was spent in my son's bathroom. It was drastically in need of a redo. He and his wife bought the house 4 years ago, and at the time we did a clean and paint with a new tub and flooring. the room was serviceable.
But it was due a refit. It had a closet in one corner that took up too much room and provided too little storage, and the sink and cabinet that were serviceable 4 years ago were now past prime. They had to go.
Last Friday afternoon, they went. Along with the wall behind the sink and the floor, down to the subfloor. That was the easy part.
Saturday we hung drywall on the sink wall and filled in hole in the walls and ceiling the closet removal left. and fixed a few things elsewhere in the room, and then started slinging drywall mud.
Sunday morning it was 2nd coat of mud; wait for it to dry, and then 3rd coat of mud. In between we ate dinner, as pictured above. About 12 pounds of ribs. We put about 6 ounces in the fridge.
Monday was touch up on the drywall, and starting on the floor. We had to lay cement backer board, and then layout the tile. The tile had been chosen by the daughter in law, so we had to make it fit in the room.
It came out stunning, if I do say so myself. Pictures later, as soon as I can figure out how to get them from a text on my phone.
We had the original layout, the layout we first decided to use, the revised layout, and the layout that developed as we were laying tile out on the floor. The actual laying of tile is easy. The prep work will kill you.
But I suppose it is like everything else in this world; the job itself is easy; its the prep work for the job that is hard.
Once we had the layout, then we had to center it on the room- left and right, and front to back, then determine our layout lines. The other hard part is the first thing anybody will see is just inside the door. And that is where you stop laying tile; not start. You start back in the hidden corner, and if the hidden corner isn't absolutely perfect, then when you get to the door the tile look like somebody backed a truck up and swept them out of the tailgate.
I had to leave about 9:00 Monday night; I was spent and had to work the next morning. The Boy finished up by himself, until he ran out of tile about 11:00.
This weekend it is finish sanding and paint on the walls and ceiling; install the new sink and sit back to hear the compliments.
And drink beer. Laying tile is not a job you do under the influence.
Monday, October 1, 2012
Today we finish the drywall finishing and start laying the tile floor; should be another busy day.
With luck, I will have enough time and energy to do a real post tomorrow.
And no, that's not our remodel; neither was yesterday's picture.
I ain't got time to take no pictures!