1 November 2013 Ardmore RV Park (Ardmore, OK)
Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: WA151 November 1, 1925
Yesterday the high was 68°, just about on forecast, with the average humidity dropped to 68%; a much more pleasant day than what we have been having. The low this morning was down a lot also to 42° and it did not warm up very quickly. I had the Wave 6 on again after Patches begged for it. HA
Texas had some very heavy rains with flooding these past few days. From what I can see I will not be traveling into the areas where there was flooding and the storm has moved on toward the northeast. Forecast high temperatures at my next 'planned' camp are to be in upper 70s to lower 80s with a slight chance of rain the first couple of days that I'll be there.
Some pictures of the damage that I did to Desperado and what she looks like after the repairs. The after picture of the rear panel does not look great but the color difference is caused by shadows, the paint job is very good. In fact it looks better now than it did before.
Before (After my backing into a post)
After (After the repair)
This is from an October 31, 2013 blog posting on The Sovereign Investor by Jeff D. Opdyke. Former President Nixon is mostly known as the president that resigned to avoid impeachment because he lied. He is also known for taking the U. S. dollar off the gold monetary standard. It is said that history does not repeat but does rhyme; will we get such a rhyme sometime during the remainder of President Obama's second term?
Every monetary system in America since the late-1800s has survived for between 28 and 40 years. Alas, the modern monetary system won’t last either. The 42-year-old fiat dollar that serves the world today is backed by nothing more than the clearly questionable “good faith and credit” of the world’s most-indebted country. A currency’s global hegemony has always come from a position of strength in the country backing that currency. The death of a global currency has always resulted when the underlying country has destroyed itself from within.
2 November 2013 Ardmore RV Park (Ardmore, OK)
Yesterday the high was 73°, again on forecast, with the average humidity dropping some more to 63%; again a much more pleasant day than what we have been having. The low this morning was up just slightly to 44° and it stayed rather cool with a slight wind blowing. No Wave 6 heater on today although it was considered and Patches would have been all for it.
We did only a short potty walk this morning. Patches let me sleep in for over 1/2 hour which was so good of her. That lead me to believe that she wanted a rest day which I was ready to go along with. I have been looking forward to the little bit of extra bed time and no walk but must wait for her to decide when that will be.
Made up two 3x5 route cards for the second day of travel to my next camp. There is not much difference in the total distance between the two but only the last 55 miles would be on the same roads. I still have not received an email to tell me if a meeting is going to be possible along the way but I have routes planned for either eventuality. Will pick some possible breakfast and gas stops for plan 'A' only at this time. If I get an email I can then decide those stops along the plan 'B' route.
This excerpt is from Culture Of Ignorance – Part One by Jim Quinn on his The Burning Platform blog. It is a long article that is well worth reading.
Nothing exposes the ignorance of various factions within our society better than a debate about budgets, spending, and unfunded liabilities. This is where every party, group, special interest, and voting bloc ignore any and all facts that are contrary to their selfish interest. They only see what they want to see. The fallacies, errors, omissions and mistruths of their positions are inconsequential to people who only care about their short-term self-seeking interests. When I question the out of control spending on entitlements and our impossible to honor level of unfunded liabilities, those of a liberal persuasion lash out with accusations of hating the poor, starving children and throwing granny under the bus. Anyone suggesting we should slow our spending is branded a terrorist by the overwhelmingly liberal legacy media.
When it comes to the fiscal train wreck, set in motion thirty years ago, the ignorant media pundits peddle a narrative about politicians failing to compromise as the culprit in this derailment. Nothing could be further from the truth. Compromise is what has gotten us to this point. The Republicans compromised and allowed the Democrats to create a welfare state. The Democrats compromised and allowed the Republicans to create a warfare state. The Federal Reserve compromised their mandate of stable prices and preventing financial calamities by inflating away 95% of the dollar’s purchasing power in 100 years, while creating bubbles every five or so years, like clockwork.
November 2013 Wal*Mart (Stephenville, TX)
Yesterday the high was 64°, again near forecast, with the average humidity dropped some more to 55%;. This was as nice a day as I had while in Ardmore and perhaps the lowest average humidity while I was there but it still was over 50% average for the day - far to humid for me. The low this morning was down to 37° and I realized that after we started to walk. No gloves again and my hands were cold.
With Daylight Savings Time changing this morning we were up at 5:45 did about 1.5 mile walk and got on the road near 6:30. The first 50 miles were due west into much flatter country. Then we turned south and crossed into Texas where the hills started coming back and so did the wind. Mostly a head wind or from the southeast which made driving a bit tough.
I was happy to call it a day at 11:00 when we arrived at our overnight stop. Doing a Wal*Mart blacktop boondock for the night since it is not expected to get very hot this afternoon so I think I can survive without an electric hook-up.
The route was only 197 miles which would have been easy if it were not for the wind. US70, US81, TX59, US281 & BusUS377/Washington St.
Stopped for breakfast in Bowie, TX at the Longhorn Café. It is THE place to be for breakfast on Sunday; there were 2 Bowie Police cars and a Sheriff car in the parking lot when I pulled in. That is always a good sign that there is good food available. I had a design your own omelet with sausage, jalapaño and mushrooms accompanied by a lot of home fries and a tortilla plus coffee. This all came to a total of $6.48 - If you are in Bowie, TX don't miss this place.
Stopped at a station almost next door to Wal*Mart and filled up with gas. This was the first time in well over a year that I have been able to buy gas for less than $3. It was quite a bit less at $2.939 which was 5¢ less than I would have paid in Ardmore where I thought gas was cheap.
This is another excerpt from Culture Of Ignorance – Part One by Jim Quinn on The Burning Platform. As I said before it is a long article but well worth reading.
Democracy is a pathetic belief in the collective wisdom of individual ignorance.” – H.L. Mencken
The only way a democracy can survive is if the population is knowledgeable, vigilant, skeptical, educated, individually responsible, self-reliant, moral, capable of critical thinking and willing to accept the consequences of their actions. A nation of takers, fakers and blamers will not last long. We’ve degenerated into a nation of knowledge hating book burners. Our culture of ignorance will lead to the destruction of our culture and the ignorant masses will wonder what happened.
November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high was 66° in Stephenville yesterday with a low of 55 this morning. I dove into rain about 30 minutes after leaving this morning and then drove in light showers almost all the way to my new camp. Wasn't raining when I arrived just before noon but looks like it did earlier today and could do so again at any time.
My route was a little longer today at 242 miles but a much easier drive with no wind. The rain made it a very poor day to do much windshield tourism but traffic was not too bad for mostly two lanes and through some hilly country. The route: US377, TX16, TX534, TX173, US90 & County Rd 5216.
I was lucky to get here when I did. The Office is open until noon and is then closed until 2:00; closed for the day at 4:30. Not the most convenient hours for RVers that are coming in but I have found that each SKP Park has there own way of doing things.
The only stop that I made was in Goldthwait, TX for breakfast at Peabody's. It is in 'downtown' on TX16 and was easy to find. The decor is your basic early 1900 building that has been gutted inside leaving a huge open room that could probably seat a couple hundred. When I arrived there were 3 old codgers at one table where they most likely meet every morning for coffee, fix the problems of the world and tell stories about how great they were. I had a decent omelet, but not as good as at the Longhorn yesterday; paid less than $10 but again nothing as cheap as at the Longhorn.
I got set up here and tried to connect with Verizon and had no problem. Then within 15 minutes I lost the connection. Tried a couple of things thinking it might have been me but still no connection so I managed to connect to an unsecured WIFI. Had not been on the WIFI for more than a minute or two and I saw that the Verizon connection had returned. I hope this is not an indication of what Verizon service will be like at this location. I'm hoping it is storm related and not a common occurrence.
I think David P Goldman (Spengler)in his December 14, 2011 blog posting explained why President Obama likes to surround himself with the celebrities that you find in People Magazine. These are people like himself! We all tend to acquire friends that are much like ourselves or at least have similar interest so it is only natural that a celebrity president would gravitate to be with other celebrities.
Nonetheless people need a success story with which to identify, and the arbitrary elevation of undistinguished individuals provides a proxy. Very few people can imagine themselves founding a biotech company that applies quantum mechanics to molecular processes, but anyone can imagine becoming a celebrity who is famous for being famous. The definitive celebrity who is famous for being famous, of course, is Barack Obama, the one-term senator from Illinois without a single accomplishment to his name — not an article in a law review, not a piece of legislation — who levered himself into the presidency.
5 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high was 73° here in Hondo yesterday with 70% average humidity after receiving 0.02" of rain. The low this morning was 69° with the humidity in the upper 80%s; NOT my kind of weather. The 10 day forecast is not very promising with higher temperatures and more rain which will keep it very humid.
Patches and I did a walking tour of the Park yesterday afternoon with a stop at the dog park. We were join there by a fellow that had just recently arrived from California with his small wire haired dog. Patches met him at the fence in her usual non-friendly manner but when he came inside the dog park they got along great. Patches even acted like she wanted him to play with her but he was not going for it.
We did much the same labyrinth route again this morning, winding our way through all the streets in the Park. This will give us about a 1.25 mile walk in the morning which I can double or modify to whatever distance we feel up to. When we got home I feed Patches and then went to the Club House looking for an early morning Koffee Klatch but there was none gathered. I was told that there are usually 2-3 people there but maybe I was too early.
I continued to have a dodgy, and very slow, Verizon connection yesterday and this morning. The Park has 3 WIFI sites that I can see and have been using the one with the strongest signal but it disconnects from time to time also. I checked with the Park Office and was told that is the way it is here and is a good as it gets. I can live with the aggravation but don't like it.
An old ‘new’ program by Thomas Sowell for Human Events is a great article as are so many of Sowell's. He goes on to compare ObamaCare insurance to your auto insurance and how using it to get to 'single payer' is like what the government has done to implement 'public transportation'. Suggested reading!
Like so many things that seem new, ObamaCare is in many ways old wine in new bottles.
For example, when confronted with the fact that millions of Americans stand to lose their existing medical insurance, as a result of ObamaCare, defenders of ObamaCare say that this is true only when those people have “substandard” insurance.
Who decides what is “substandard”? What is older than the idea that some exalted elite know what is good for us better than we know ourselves? Obama uses the rhetoric of going “forward,” but he is in fact going backward to an age when despots told everybody what they had better do and better not do.
6 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high was 82° yesterday with 79% average humidity; no rain just the very uncomfortable humidity. The low this morning was 72° with the humidity still in the upper 80%s; then the rain started at 10:30 but it will be recorded as a trace at the most. The 10 day forecast is expecting these same temperatures and more rain which will keep it very humid - hateful weather which all the locals claim is VERY unusual. Where have I heard that before?
Patches and I did our tour of the Park early this morning and then left for town. I had Google Searched for a restaurant where I might stop for breakfast but didn't find much. Therefore, I was very pleased to see a Mexican restaurant, El Charro, that had an Open sign it the window as I was entering the town of Hondo. Even more encouraging were the 3-4 18-wheeler trucks in the parking lot, where the truckers eat is usually a good stop.
They have a full selection of Mexican breakfasts available and one that I rarely see - Nopalitos Con Huevos. I had to have that since I get it so rarely and I never have been able to duplicate the taste when I cook it. It appears to be a very simple dish to make but I have not found the 'secret' yet.
We then went to the H-E-B Market for groceries. This chain of grocery stores, only in Texas and northern Mexico, was first opened in 1905 in Kerrville, TX. In 1919 Howard Edward Butt, youngest son of the founder, returned from World War I and took over the store. He re-named it H-E-B, his initials, which is much better than the Butt Market. Even with the new name he had 4 failures trying to open other stores in Central Texas, finally successfully opened a second store in Del Rio, TX in 1927.
We got back to our space in the Park and got set up once again. The spaces here are quite large and there is a lot of room between RVs but the area where the RV needs to be parked is very narrow. I'm getting some good backing practice trying to get into such a narrow space. So far not great, but there is nothing to hit other than a walkway on the right side. It is the left side where I must pay the closest attention and not drive over the septic system - not good if I do.
7 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high dropped to 75° yesterday with 77% average humidity; and a strong breeze most of the day. The low this morning plunged to 48° compared to yesterday morning. The official rain recorded yesterday was 0.03" but I don't think there was that much fall here at the Park. Only expected to reach a high of 70 today and then warm up into the mid-70s for the next 10 days with a 50% chance of rain a week from today. If the humidity will go down some that should make for some nice weather.
The day before yesterday we did a 2 mile walk on roads that form a square with the Park in the center of the north side. It is a good route except for the west side which has perhaps a 100 dogs along the way. Most of them are contained but we had 4 come through the fencing. No problems and Patches was great along that entire 1/2 mile; no lunging, no barking - a Good Girl.
Yesterday afternoon we walked County Rd 5216 out and back for a 2 mile round trip. Went past a field that had a half dozen or so brahma cattle and a couple of donkeys that trotted over to the fence to see us. Patches went up to the most daring of the cattle and they sniffed noses and were getting along great until some of the others spooked and broke the contact. She still does not meet other dogs well however she is ignoring them so much better when we are walking so there is improvement.
President Obama was back on the Campaign Trail yesterday in Dallas, TX. Once again he is doing his best to distance himself from a mess that he created with his time tested campaigning style where he blames everyone except himself for what is wrong. He is working hard to fix it! Promising to fix broken promises! Senator Cruz, from Texas, called him out in what he has labeled the President's Broken Promise Tour.
President Obama’s trip to Texas brings nothing with it but broken promises. He promised that Americans could keep their health care plans. We were told premiums would go down, that jobs would be created. And we now know these are all false promises.
Texas’ economy is strong and our population is young and growing because our leaders embrace limited government, restrained spending, and competition. But in spite of all Texas has done to resist the biggest entitlement program of this generation, Obamacare is reducing health care options, increasing costs and hurting jobs. It has no place in Texas and must be repealed so we can empower Americans and their families by offering real health care choices rather than a government-written menu of plans they don’t want and can’t afford.
President Obama should take his broken promises tour elsewhere so Texans can continue focusing on the solutions that have allowed our state to become and remain the nation’s economic and job creation powerhouse.
The President also had a meeting with 15 Democrat Senators at the White House where he tried to assuage their fears that ObamaCare is going to prevent their re-election in 2104. A White House official said that the President talked about ongoing efforts to fix the HealthCare.gov website and promised to ramp up communication and education outreach
to consumers who are being told their existing insurance policies are being canceled. I have provided the emphasis regarding the proposed fix for canceled policies - more speeches, more spin will fix that problem.
8 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: WA152 November 8, 1925
The high dropped some more to 66° yesterday with 'only' 50% average humidity; a little cool but a pretty nice day. The low this morning moved up a little to 53°. I don't think there was any rain last night or early this morning but as I was going to the laundry I saw a rainbow that I think was created by the sunrise shinning on the low cloud cover.
Yesterday afternoon we walked County Rd 5216 out and back, to the west, for a 2 mile round trip. The day before we had gone to the east. It is a very narrow road with more traffic than I like but there is a mowed shoulder that lets us get off the road when there is some traffic. These two routes and modifications to them will have to do while we are here. We will most likely do the roads in the Park each morning.
I went to the Park laundry this morning and had just started the washer when a woman came in and told me that the Club House was closed on Tue & Fri for cleaning from 7 to 9. She was kind to let me finish my laundry and we had a nice conversation when I came back to get clothes out of the dryer. During that conversation she said "Your the one that has Patches aren't you?" I thought this was too funny - everyone(?) in the Park seems to know my dogs name and I have met almost no one.
I have changed my 'linners' a little from the same ol' same ol' for this week. Have given up the green salad in favor of Snezhanka and Hummas with a turkey burger and soup. The soup is simply a big can of Cream of Chicken, some added canned chicken, couple of packages of frozen broccoli and a little added water. A good change from my stews!
The Lame Stream Media was all excited about the 2.8% GDP number that was released yesterday. I could not find any story that discussed what the effect the 'new' GDP calculation might have had on that number. For those that may have forgotten, or never knew, expenditures for research and development (R&D) and for entertainment, literary, and artistic originals providing long-lasting service to the businesses, nonprofit institutions, and government agencies that use them were added to GDP starting in July i.e. 3rd quarter 2013.
There were stories earlier in the year that claimed that this change could add 3% to the annual GDP growth. If the analysis at that time was correct then I would say that the 3rd Quarter 2013 dropped rather sharply from the prior two quarters this year. I know that the media is trying their best to provide some positive News for Obama to boost his job performance poll numbers but I'm afraid reality will win out over their spin. "Governments are in full pretend mode. They have no control over the situation other than to fool people into believing that things are getting better." - Monty Pelerin
President Obama promised the 15 Democrat Senators that he would ramp up communication and education outreach to consumers who are being told their existing insurance policies are being canceled. Yesterday this is what he said: "I am sorry that they are finding themselves in this situation based on assurances they got from me. We've got to work hard to make sure that they know we hear them and we are going to do everything we can to deal with folks who find themselves in a tough position as a consequence of this." So, problem fixed - now let us move on to the transforming of America. Please note that the President used the Royal "WE" rather than the first person singular that he usually employs.
9 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high was 66° again yesterday with the average humidity up slightly to 53%; a copy of the day before and a pretty nice day. The low this morning moved up a little bit more to 57°. I didn't hear it during the morning hours but we got an official 0.02" of rain with the streets here in the Park showing evidence that we got more than that. Maybe get some more during the day, it stayed overcast and threatened to rain again almost all day. Probably higher humidity today which is not good and cloudy sky, haven't seen a clear sky since I have been here.
This is the 5th DeMille book that I have read, I think. I did not record all the titles as I read them but I think they were Wild Fire, The Charm School, The Gold Coast, The Lion and Cathedral. All of them great books and almost all of them develop new characters in new locations with different story lines. I recommend his books.
Born into the heat and hatred of the Northern Ireland conflict, IRA man Brian Flynn has masterminded a brilliant terrorist act - the seizure of Saint Patrick's Cathedral in NYC on St. Patrick's Day. Among his hostages: the woman Brian Flynn once loved, a former terrorist turned peace activist. Among his enemies: an Irish-American police lieutenant fighting against a traitor inside his own ranks as well as a shadowy British intelligence officer pursuing his own cynical, bloody plan. - DeMille Website
The Bureau of Labor was back to work after the government Slim Down, and hard at it, releasing the non-farm job numbers for October today that showed an increase of 204,000 jobs. All of the economic experts were shocked, I say shocked. They blamed the shortfall in September on the Slim Down, although it had not happened yet, and were forecasting more of the same in October. The huge increase in jobs shocked them, shocking job News.
If you look at the Household Data for October the number of Employed is even more shocking because it decreased by 735,000 reversing any trend once more. There were increases in April thru July then a decrease in August, an small increase in September and now a huge decrease.
Even more bad news was the increase in the the Unemployment Rate which went back up to 7.3%;. The media has almost nothing to say about this increase, they all are spinning the huge increase in the number of jobs as being the News of the day. There was an increase in Unemployed by 17,000 but this was also generally ignored by the media.
The Not in the Labor Force increased by a huge 932,000, third highest monthly increase, to another new record high of 91,541,000. This caused the Participation Rate to plunge to a low of 62.8%. The average earnings rose by another 1 cent to $24.10 an hour, while the average workweek remaining at 34.4 hours.
10 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high dropped moved up a little to 71° yesterday with the average humidity back up to 72%; another copy of the previous days. The low this morning moved up some more to 64° and the humidity will most likely go up also. Overcast, as it has been all this past week with a 10 day forecast for mostly cloudy or partly cloudy.
I saw that there was someone in the Club House this morning at about 6:45 so when we finished our walk I went over there. Found John, the fellow that had been pointed out to me as being a Kofee Klatcher. We sat and talked for the better part of an hour. He is here from Minnesota with a pick up that has a pop up slide in camper in the bed. Got in a bit of socializing and may find him there again.
Became current reading my Monthly blogs but it has taken me so long that I need to start over. The first ones I read are now almost a month old. I need to start the process for the January Will Rogers weekly article links before too much longer also.
According to Egyptian newspaper El Watan, a group of Egyptian lawyers has submitted a complaint charging U.S. president Barrack Hussein Obama with crimes against humanity at the International Criminal Court (ICC). The complaint charges Obama of being an accessory to the Muslim Brotherhood, which incited widespread violence in Egypt both before and after the June 30 Revolution.
He will join former President Bush and Vice President Cheney in being charged at the ICC but may be the first Peace Prize winner to be so charged. Nothing will come of the charges however, the United States still has not ratified the Rome Statute, meaning that its citizens remain largely immune from potential indictments by the court.
11 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high of 71° yesterday matched the day before with the average humidity of 73%; being only one percent higher. Another day like all those that preceded it. The low this morning dropped to 55° and the continuous overcast has broken up a bit to become mostly cloudy. It is expected to get warmer today but then back down to the same lower 70s again for the rest of the week.
Went back to Club House for coffee again this morning. John was there when Patches and I started our walk and was still there when we finished so I went to join him. We had a third fellow, Bob, join in with us and that made the world problem solving much easier.
I do enjoy historical fiction but did not like this book. The author said in the Introduction "In all my historical fiction, I have followed a single principle: to be so accurate that no one could, by historical fact, prove my story did not happen". I think the author did follow his single principle, I doubt that I could prove that the story did not happen but I will say that it is improbable. If John Buffalo did everything, and met all the people, in this story I would think that he would in fact be a historical figure rather than one in fiction.
Treating readers to yet more meticulous historical detail, Coldsmith's (The Lost Band) latest lengthy yarn is a low-key and uninspiring kind of Native American Forrest Gump. After more than 35 western novels, Coldsmith continues to chart the adventures of peripheral characters who wander through history brushing arms with major figures (this time Olympic track star Jim Thorpe, Will Rogers and Theodore Roosevelt). John Buffalo is a Lakota Sioux sent to a government school as a young boy in the 1890s. Proud of his Native American heritage, he vows to outdo the white man at his own game. Although he is a bright student, John's real success comes as an athlete; he plays football, baseball and track, and dreams of competing in the Olympics and later becoming a coach. Racism, however, derails his Olympic hopes and disrupts his budding romance with a U.S. senator's daughter. John later becomes a horse trainer and actor with a traveling Wild West show, performing around the world. In the 1920s, he travels to Hollywood, where he works as an animal trainer for motion picture companies, but he is never fulfilled by any of these adventures; a return to his Indian heritage is all he desires. John is an agreeable, sympathetic character, but not a compelling one; he is portrayed as a frustrated talent trying to make an ordinary living. Coldsmith's sketches of Wild West shows, early Hollywood and the flu epidemic of 1918 are excellent, but John's minor and unexciting involvement is just a vehicle for a painstaking history lesson. - Publishers Weekly
James Howard Kunstler has a good 'take' on President Obama in his blog posting of November 11, 2013. I had to look up Bartleby the Scrivener to understand the point that he was making. I may now go and see if I can find the short story.
Much is being made of the loneliness of Barack Obama these days. He also occupies a rather tragic niche in history — or the arc of his story at least points that way these days. Right now, it is very hard to tell whether he has been a hostage or a fool. He could have moved to break up the big banks in January of 2009, and any time since then he could have sent a memo to the Department of Justice instructing the prosecutions of financial crime to begin in earnest (or replaced the Attorney General). Didn’t happen...The history of Barack Obama will be one long record of omissions to act, not just overt failures. He is the Bartleby the Scrivener of our politics. He “prefers not to….”
12 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high of 79° yesterday was a couple of degrees above what was expected but with the average humidity dropping to 65%; it was a very pleasant day. The low this morning moved up to 63° and the mostly cloudy of yesterday has become very high thin clouds today. The 10 day forecast gives me hope that we may have more days like yesterday, very little chance of rain so it may dry out some more which would be good.
I saw John going toward the Club House just after Patches and I got back to Desperado this morning. Grabbed my coffee cup and went to join him. We had just got our cups filled when the cleaning lady came in and ran us off, we both had not remembered that Tue and Fri morning are the cleaning hours. Maybe get a chance to socialize again on Thursday?
The liberal media, which is most of all media, has picked the Republican Presidential candidate for 2016. They had previously selected Hillary as the Democrat candidate so now the only questions that remain are who will be the Vice President candidates. This quote comes from Be wary of Christie, the mainstream media’s new favorite Republican by Joseph Curl in The Washington Times.
The kingmaking certainly has shades of the media love affair with Sen. John “Maverick” McCain. The MSM loved his battle with the conservative wing of the Republican Party and lauded him as a true moderate, capable of bridging partisan gaps to work for the betterment of all. Sound familiar?
Once nominated, though, that same MSM lashed Mr. McCain as nothing more than a vicious right-winger in moderate’s clothing. Sure, the Arizona senator was forced to move right to get through the party’s primaries (as Mr. Christie likely will be), but gone was the love for their “maverick.”
...the media love affair will end the second Mr. Christie wins the nomination. And you always have to wonder: If the media loves him so much, just what’s wrong with him?
The infinite monkey theorem states that a monkey hitting keys at random on a typewriter keyboard for an infinite amount of time will almost surely type a given text, such as the complete works of William Shakespeare.
Variants of the theorem include multiple and even infinitely many typists, and the target text varies between an entire library and a single sentence. The history of these statements can be traced back to Aristotle's On Generation and Corruption
and Cicero's De natura deorum
(On the Nature of the Gods), through Blaise Pascal and Jonathan Swift, and finally to modern statements with their iconic typewriters.
What you see here is the "best and brightest" that President Obama has recruited to fix his ObamaCare website. This is the surge that he promised (oh no, another promise) would have the website working for 'most people' by the end of November 2013.
13 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high of 72° yesterday was considerably cooler than what was expected and with the average humidity dropping some more to 59% it was a great weather day. The low this morning plunged to 34° from the low of 63 yesterday and this morning was the first one that has been cloud free since I have been here. It is expected to warm up during this weekend but then cool again all of next week with only a slight chance of rain.
We did our usual morning walk in the Park and then went to town. Patches was very excited about going today for some reason; she was dancing in her navigator seat and barking at me to get us on the road. She is very talkative at times!
I went back to El Charro for breakfast again and will do so every time I go to town for groceries. There were 4 big rigs in the parking lot once more which recommended the restaurant plus the confirming recommendation was made by the presence of two Hondo police cars in the lot. No need to search for a better place to eat breakfast as far as I am concerned.
Today I had their Huevos con Chorizo with potatoes, beans and what appear to be home made corn tortillas (much thicker than the packaged store bought). This plus coffee is priced 30-40% less than what I was paying for breakfast in Custer and Ardmore.
I had a much easier time finding everything on my shopping list at H-E-B this morning. It is always an adventure to go shopping in new stores but then by the time I leave I usually have a good idea of where everything I want is located. The store here seems familiar after only two shopping trips whereas Homeland in Ardmore was still and adventure when I left.
Lies Corrupt Democracy a blog posting at Library of Law & Liberty on November 10, 2013 by Angelo M. Codevilla provides a great analysis of how the lies of Nixon, Clinton and Obama differ. This excerpt is the closing paragraphs of that posting.
Obama’s premeditated, repeated, nationally televised lies about the “Affordable Care Act” are integral, indeed essential, to his presidency and to the workings of the US government. The outcome of two national elections depended on it.
Even more significant is his contention that he never said what he said, and that what he said was true anyhow. In interpersonal relations, such a contention is an insult that makes civility impossible; because to continue to treat with someone who makes such affronts is self-degradation of which few are capable. In political life, such an insult is a declaration of war.
The deadly problem is that Barack Obama is not just an individual, nor even the head of the US government’s executive branch. He is the head of the party to which most government officials belong, the party of the media, of the educational establishment, of big corporations – in short of the ruling class. That class, it seems, has so taken ownership of Obama’s lies that it pretends that those who are suffering from the “Affordable Care Act” don’t really know what is good for them, or that they are perversely refusing to suffer for the greater good.
This class, in short, has placed itself as far beyond persuasion as Obama himself. Democracy by persuasion having become impossible, we are left with democracy as war.
14 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high was 61° yesterday, just about what was expected with the average humidity dropping even more to 44%;. I think this is the lowest daily average humidity that I have experienced since July when I was in Gunnison, CO. To put the humidity level in context, the highest daily average humidity during the period April 1st to 15th in Pahrump, NV was 22%.
The low this morning eased down a couple more degrees to 32° but I was ready for it. Went out this morning with my turtle neck long sleeve t-shirt and wool shirt-jacket and had my gloves on - HA. It is expected to warm up tomorrow and through the weekend with the lows in the 40s and 50s.
I took Patches for an afternoon walk around the Park yesterday with a stop at the dog park. She devoted most of her time to sniffing all around and multi-marking her presence. She did then break into a good run for for a minute or two, round and round the small park area with a big smile on her face.
I took three of the books that I had read to the Club House library yesterday afternoon and did some exchanges. They have a reasonably good selection to chose from so I will make sure that my library is full of un-read book when I leave here. Got another DeMille and a Ken Follett, I enjoyed his The Pillars of the Earth, so was happy to find another one of his.
Blog posting Billy Jack: Metaphor For The Economy by Monty Pelerin on November 12, 2013 is a very good article. This is only a portion of what he has to say which I think applies to ObamaCare as well to the economy.
Massive concentrated power is pitted against the market (more properly, individuals pursuing their own best interests). One side is ruthless while the other appears disorganized, indifferent and leaderless. It should be a mismatch of the worst kind. It is, although not in favor of whom you might think.
Government wants people to do things that people do not consider in their best interests. Its economic interventions are designed to alter behavior toward something the State considers better. In most cases, that involves consumption, ever-more consumption.
People are winning this battle. Freedom in the economic interstices, where men interact, still exists. Massive expenditures and force at the top don’t touch these spaces. Nor does it alter the intentions of free people. These niches are impossible to eradicate. Here individuals contravene all macro directives and force not in their interest.
15 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: WA153 November 15, 1925
The high was 64° yesterday with the average humidity moving back up to 55%;. A repeat of the day before. The low this morning moved up to a more comfortable 46° that only required my wool shirt-jacket and no gloves. The forecast high on Sunday is 86 but then is expected to drop to 63 on Tuesday with an increasing chance of rain Wed - Fri. I heard a few sprinkles on Desperado's roof last night at 7:00 but they were few and far between; I'll call it a trace of rain.
I did nothing outside my usual routine today. Walk Patches and read blogs or the News. Very little adventure in this Fulltimer's life. I get my adventure 'fix' by reading other RVer's blogs; especially the Comments that wax eloquently about the RVer's adventures, how inspiring or courageous the author of the blog is and how wonderful their photographs are. I am also reading A Journey To The Western Islands Of Scotland by Samuel Johnson & James Boswell which I downloaded from Project Gutenberg (a great source of free books).
This is a book, which was written about the two gentlemen's trip taken in 1773, that would be a travel blog posting if it were to happen today. The book had no pictures but of course the blog would not be complete without them.
The President attempted to protect the Democrat Senators that face re-election next year with his proposed 'fix' for the canceled insurance plans. He also did his best to transfer the problem onto the states and blame onto the insurance companies. "The president practiced his inveterate rhetorical sleight of hand where he claimed that in his quest to protect victims he had become a victim himself -- never responsible for his own actions, never held to his own words, and distressed to hear that there are problems." - Jon Kraushar
However, there is the big question about his authority to do what he has proposed. Once again he will use 'enforcement discretion' for that part of a law that he does not like, or is a political liability, and the Establishment Republicans will probably let him get away with it. This is discussed in some depth by Daniel Halper in his blog posting 'Fairy Tale' Continues as Obama Proposes Extralegal Obamacare Fix on The Weekly Standard November 14, 2013.
But there's a catch with president's proposed solution. The president is not proposing that the law be changed to allow all health insurance plans grandfathered into Obamacare's eligibility requirements.
No, instead the White House is saying that it will use "enforcement discretion" to allow illegal health insurance plans to be able to still be sold. That is, the Obama administration will not enforce the penalty on individuals for not having eligible health insurance plans and they'll allow the insurance companies to still sell so-called bad plans -- plans they technically can't sell under Obamacare.
The proposed White House fix so that Obama can honor his commitment is also likely to create more problems and to further distrust the American people have for this administration, which makes law based on what it chooses to enforce while sidestepping the constitutional process that is in place.
These same points were made by Chris Stirewalt in his posting Dems Make Lame Duck Obama Start Quacking
on November 15, 2013.
After seven weeks of deepening anxieties and growing anger – seven weeks in which the president was forced to apologize for deceiving voters in the last election, seven weeks in which Americans came to mistrust their president – the solution offered was to codify the administration talking points blaming insurance companies and state officials. And then, after talking about how he was going “to keep on working as hard as [he] can” to “win back some credibility on this health care law,” he headed to Philadelphia for a fundraiser.
Obama tellingly spoke of his law and his aim of universal insurance in terms of his own suffering and courage: “But it is complicated. It is hard. But I make no apologies for us taking this on because somebody, sooner or later, had to do it.”
16 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high was 80° yesterday with the average humidity moving up to 64%; not nearly as nice as the prior two days. The low this morning was 55° but it was quite humid so my long sleeved t-shirt and windbreaker was too warm. The forecast high today is 82, 90 on Sunday and 81 on Monday with the increased chance of rain moved up to Tuesday. Hot and Humid - not my kind of weather.
This was better historical fiction than the last one I read but not quite what I prefer. This was more of a fictional swashbuckler built upon some historical facts than what I think of as being historical fiction. It was entertaining however and I will pick up another of Cornwell's books if I get a chance.
Five years after Waterloo ( Sharpe's Revenge ), Sharpe, living quietly en famille in Normandy, is asked by Dona Louisa Vivar to find her husband, last seen as a Spanish captain-general in rebellious Chile. En route to South America, Sharpe can't resist stopping at St. Helena to meet Napoleon, who charms Sharpe and his ex-sergeant, Patrick Harper, then asks them to carry a gift to an English settler in Chile. When they arrive, they are told Vivar is dead, and the corrupt man serving in his place accuses them of trying to pass a message from Napoleon to Chilean insurgents. Sharpe and Harper are shipped out on a Spanish frigate, which is captured by rebels led by the eponymous devil, Scottish Lord Cochrane, formerly of the Royal Navy, still the legendary scourge of the Spanish fleet. The ebullient, daring Cochrane sweeps Sharpe along in a series of breathtaking adventures on land and sea that ends with a smashing, against-the-odds rebel victory and the solution to Vivar's disappearance. Readers will be dazzled by the rollicking plot, period color and the atavistic thrill of terrific battle scenes right out of a Turner painting. - Publishers Weekly
“As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.” — H. L. Mencken
"Rule by personal charisma has met its proper fate. The spell has been broken, and the magician stands exposed. We need no pollsters to tell us of the loss of faith in Mr. Obama’s policies—and, more significantly, in the man himself. Charisma is like that. Crowds come together and they project their needs onto an imagined redeemer. The redeemer leaves the crowd to its imagination: For as long as the charismatic moment lasts—a year, an era—the redeemer is above and beyond judgment. He glides through crises, he knits together groups of varied, often clashing, interests. Always there is that magical moment, and its beauty, as a reference point." - Fouad Ajami
17 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high was 84° yesterday with the average humidity moving up to 78%;. The low this morning was 72° with even more humidity than yesterday; a short sleeved t-shirt with windbreaker was too much, had to take the jacket off. The forecast high today continues to be 90 and 81 on Monday. Hot and Humid for the rest of the week - BOOO!
I didn't do much other than my daily routine. The exception was dumping holding tanks and adding fresh water. The fresh water idiot light was showing only 1/4 of a tank remaining and the gray water tank has been showing full for the past few days. I also did a little work on the Will Rogers links; made a start.
A couple more quotes that I see as explanations for the ObamaCare failure. If the ideas presented in each of them had been understood before trying to implement ObamaCare it would have saved President Obama and the Democrats a lot of grief. More importantly the People of the United States would have been much better off if the politicos had acted upon the ideas presented before passing ObamaCare.
"The curious task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design." - Friedrich Hayek
"It is human arrogance and human opportunism with guile that gets us all the time in our efforts to pursue idealized plans for public management of economic and social affairs with the purpose of human betterment. And this isn't just a matter of slouching toward a solution. Arrogance and opportunism have huge costs in terms of money and lives, and very few benefits in terms of devising better solutions." - Peter Boettke at Coordination Problem
18 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high was 95° yesterday (a record high for this date) with the average humidity down slightly to 69%;. The low this morning was a much more comfortable 60° the short sleeved t-shirt with windbreaker was just about right. The weather guessers have increased their forecast to 86 for today after what happened yesterday. They have also reduced the chances of rain for the rest of the week but it will still be Hot and Humid. I do not like it!
There is a cold front moving in during next weekend with the following week much colder. The weather gurus have even predicted two freezing nights with the highs in the lower 50s or upper 40s. I don't like the freezing prediction but the cooler temperatures will be welcome. Having said that, I would much prefer some middle ground rather than one week very hot and the next very cold. My next camp is forecasting a temperature range more to my liking but I'm not there yet.
Fascism is the system of government that cartelizes the private sector, centrally plans the economy to subsidize producers, exalts the police State as the source of order, denies fundamental rights and liberties to individuals, and makes the executive State the unlimited master of society.
This describes mainstream politics in America today. It is so much part of the mainstream that it is hardly noticed any more.
Fascism is too strong a word however; it pejorative, used often to describe the political position of someone you do not agree with. I suggest that Statism replace the term and ask - do the following characteristics describe politics in America?
1. The government is totalitarian because it acknowledges no restraint upon its powers.
2. Government is a de facto dictatorship based on the leadership principle.
3. Government administers a capitalist system with an immense bureaucracy.
4. Government has tightened its economic control of the producers through 'crony' capitalism and cartel formulation.
5. Economic planning is based on the principle of the economic self-determination of the nation-state.
6. Government sustains economic life through spending and borrowing.
7. Militarism is a mainstay of government spending.
8. Military spending has imperialist aims.
19 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high was 88° yesterday (although lower than on the 17th it was a record high again for the date) with the average humidity down only slightly again to 64%;. The low this morning was a pleasant 55° with a high overcast that may keep the high temperature down to the expected 82. The weather experts have revised those freezing low temperatures they were forecasting for next week, they now say it will only be in the mid-30s or lower 40s. I like that much better - bring it on!
We did our morning walk in the Park as usual and then went to town. Breakfast was Huevos Rancheros at El Charro which I did not like as well as their previous menu items. I will go back again next week and try one more thing from the menu while I am here. I still give the restaurant high marks for their good food and low prices.
As I was leaving the Park I saw John walking home and stopped to say good morning. I told him I was going to town and maybe to a barber did he know of one. He said there was one about a mile west of the Park that he would recommend. I stopped there on the way home after getting groceries at H-E-B for the week.
The barber had to take her mother to the doctor today so I have an appointment for tomorrow afternoon. I'll walk Patches to her shop which is about a mile and we will do our afternoon walk as well as me getting my hair cut. I keep telling you that I'm an accomplished multitasker.
With almost all the lame stream media doing the best that they can for President Obama the latest Washington Post/ABC poll has his overall performance at a new low approve of 42/55. That is not so bad when you compare it with former President Bush after the fist year of his second term. However, President Obama has now also fallen in favorability (he has always been likeable until now); for the first time the poll found more people viewing him negatively than positively 46/52.
All the demonizing of the Tea Party Movement by the President, the Democrats, the Republicans and the media has probably help the movement more than it has hurt. In answer to the question: In general, do you think the political views of the Democrats, Republicans and Tea Party are too conservative, too liberal or about right? -About Right- Republican 36%, Democrat 41% and Tea Party 35%.
20 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high was 71° yesterday far short of the expected 82 with the average humidity down a very small 2% to 62%;. The low this morning was up a little to 63° with the continued overcast but there was a slight breeze which helped make it a nice morning walk. The weather experts are sticking with their expected high temperatures in the low 80s until the weekend with increased chances of rain then also.
I made up a pot of Pozole yesterday that I think is the best I have made so far. I tried adding some menudo spices as well as my usual liberal quantity of cayenne. The only thing that is not so good is the beef stew meat that I used for this batch; it is some of the toughest beef that I have bought in a long time. I have made Pozole with chicken and pork as well as beef and would have done well to have gone with one of the others this time.
Changed my breakfast scramble once again. I had become tired of the spinach so went back to jalapeños. That is the only change at this time. I still like the way the crumbled tofu cooks up with just a little turmeric added it looks very much like scrambled eggs. I can only hope that it is doing something positive for my cholesterol levels.
I don't think you will read about this organization nor any of their published results in any U.S. media. Their findings do not support the 'story' that the media in this country is trying to sell and certainly does not support President Obama nor his policies.
The Legatum Institute is an independent policy, advisory and advocacy organization within the Legatum group of companies based in London, United Kingdom. The Institute researches and promotes the principles that drive the creation of global prosperity and the expansion of human liberty. The Institute undertakes original and collaborative research and publishes case studies and ancillary literature. Recent initiatives include the launch of the Legatum Prosperity Index (PI), which measures prosperity across countries as a combination of material wealth and life satisfaction.
The Legatum Institute’s 2013 Legatum Prosperity Index™ was launched at the Institute’s Mayfair offices with a series of presentations and panel discussions. Key findings from the 2013 Index include:
Norway tops the Index for the fifth consecutive year;
The US drops out of top 20 in the Economy sub-index;
Latin America and the Caribbean rise above the world average in the Economy sub-index for the first time;
Bangladesh overtakes India in overall prosperity.
The United States was ranked #11 overall with it's lowest ranking being #31 in the Safety & Security sub-index behind such countries as Uruguay, Poland, Czech Republic & South Korea. Within the Governance sub-index 68.9% believe that business and government are corrupt and 48.3% have confidence in the judicial system. It is ironic that the U.S. is ranked #2 in the Health sub-index yet that is the area that President Obama targeted for 'reform'.
21 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high was 78° yesterday about what was forecast with the average humidity moving up again to 75%;. The low this morning was back up to to 73° (only down 5 degrees from the high yesterday), continued overcast and the humidity at 87%. It was NOT a pleasant morning walk. I felt like I could reach out, grab the air and squeeze water out until it dripped down my arm.
The high tomorrow is forecast to be 70° with an 80% chance of rain. Then two days dropping down into the 40s for a high with a 60% chance of rain followed by another 80% chance day. Much cooler which will be a blessing.
I walked to the barber shop yesterday afternoon which was west of the Park at just over one mile. That made it perfect as a multi-tasking endeavor plus Patches and I both got a rest at the turn around point. It was during the hottest part of the day and the humidity was still in the upper 60s% so it was not the most pleasant of walks. I am certainly getting my fill of high humidity!
There has been a lot written, or said, about President Obama being a student of Saul D Alinsky's Rules for Radicals. In the opening paragraph Alinsky says, "What follows is for those who want to change the world from what it is to what they believe it should be. The Prince was written by Machiavelli for the Haves on how to hold power. Rules for Radicals is written for the Have-Nots on how to take it away."
I think there may be a lot of justification for believing that the Obama Community Organizer used many of those Rules to get elected i.e. a Have-Not taking away power from the established Haves. However, once he obtained the power he was forced to retain it and tried to adopt the teachings of Machiavelli. He had almost no experience in doing so and I think that is why he has experienced a problem being an effective president. He is a master at taking away power (get elected) but fails miserably when he tries to hold it (govern).
It must be remembered that there is nothing more difficult to plan, more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to manage than a new system. For the initiator has the enmity of all who would profit by the preservation of the old institution and merely lukewarm defenders in those who gain by the new ones. - Niccolò Machiavelli.
22 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: WA154 November 22, 1925
The high was 82° yesterday with the average humidity matching it at 82%;.
It was 76° this morning at 1:00 but 50° at 6:00 when we went out for our walk and the temperature was still dropping. Wind blowing the storm in from the north with some lightning flashing and a few sprinkles that convinced me to make it a short walk.
The expected high today is 50 but the official record will show the 76 that we had in the early morning. Then tomorrow thru Monday the forecast highs will be around 45 with a 60-70% chance of rain. I may be staying inside even more than usual but it feels better than the hot and humid.
I did that very thing, stayed inside, as the wind blew and it got colder as the day progressed. That gave me the time, and more importantly the inclination, to finish getting the Will Rogers weekly article links for January ready to be added to my postings. That still left me with some time to join Patches on the couch; I read as she slept. I got a smart dog!
Yesterday the Senate “went nuclear” and changed the rules for executive nominees and judicial appointments, throwing out two centuries of precedent to make it possible to confirm those nominees (but not, it should be noted, Supreme Court justices) on a simple majority vote.
President Obama issued a powerful statement condemning this change. ”If the right of free and open debate is taken away from the minority party and the millions of Americans who ask us to be their voice, I fear the partisan atmosphere in Washington will be poisoned to the point where no one will be able to agree on anything,” he thundered. ”That does not serve anybody’s best interest, and it certainly is not what the patriots who founded this democracy had in mind. We owe the people who sent us here more than that. We owe them much more.”
Vice President Joe Biden was equally opposed to the nuclear option, fondly recalling his vote against such a proposal back in 2005 as “the single most significant vote” of his Senate career. ”We should make no mistake,” Biden cautioned. ”This nuclear option is ultimately an example of the arrogance of power. It is a fundamental power grab by the majority party.”
“The nuclear option abandons America’s sense of fair play,” Biden added. ”It is the one thing this country stands for: not tilting the playing field on the side of those who control and own the field.” He cautioned that the majority should have remembered that it wouldn’t own that playing field forever, and should thus have avoided the “naked power grab” represented by this change to Senate procedure.
Former Secretary of State and Senator Hillary Clinton, widely viewed as the front-running Democrat candidate for the presidency in 2016, was unsparing in her criticism of the rule change: “If you cannot get 60 votes for a nominee, maybe you should think about who you are sending to be confirmed.”
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid expressed his strong and principled opposition, reaching deep into the roots of American history to powerfully evoked the wisdom of the Founding Fathers to explain why the filibuster was so important. ”For 200 years we’ve had the right to extended debate,” Reid argued. ”It’s not some procedural gimmick. It’s within the vision of the founding fathers of our country. They did it; we didn’t do it. They established a government so that no one person and no single party could have total control.”
All the quotes above came from years gone by, when Democrats were in the minority.
I have taken all of the above from Senate Democrats detonate “nuclear option” barring nominee filibusters at Human Events by John Hayward with a few of my editorial changes although none of the quotes were changed. I have to agree with Biden that the Democrats will not own the playing field forever and should have avoided the "naked power grab". I see this as a sign of weakness rather than one of strength - time will tell.
23 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
As I said yesterday it was 76° at 1:00am but 50° at 6:00am when we went out for our walk and the temperature was still dropping; the low temperature for the day occurred at about 9:00pm and was 39°. The average humidity remained high at 80% but with the wind and lower temperatures it felt much better when we did our afternoon walk.
The low this morning was 39° as it had been all through the night. I was prepared for it however. Had on my gloves, my wool cap, turtle neck long sleeved shirt and wool blanket shirt. Even with the wind blowing 10-15 mph I felt nice and warm. Patches loved it of course, her ears can feel like they might be frozen but she loves the cold weather.
I had my Wave 6 on and off a few times yesterday and will probably be doing so again today with the expected high to be 44. No rain yet but the forecast is for a 70% chance tonight the 60-80% chance during the next two days. We have not had a sunny-clear day since the 13th and the forecast is continued clouds until the 27th. I am not only very tired of the high humidity but the gray overcast everyday needs to go away also.
This is the first David Poyer novel that I have read. He has four in the Hemlock County Series this being the last, so far. It was an enjoyable read and I'll be adding his name to my mental list of authors to look for when I exchange books again.
Veteran writer Poyer triumphs in a powerful tale of an underdog hero fighting against an invincible robber baron. In strong, supple prose that propels a tension-filled narrative, he captures the revolutionary spirit behind the struggle against near-slave-labor conditions for workers (many of them immigrants) in a giant oil consortium in western Pennsylvania during the bitter winter of 1936. Bill Halvorsen is a promising boxer hired as a driller by Dan Thunner, the owner of Thunder Oil Company and a local boxing league. Bill is courting Jennie, a Slovakian Catholic immigrant, and trying to prove to her family that he's husband material with a steady job, when an explosion at a Thunder refinery exposes the lack of safety regulations that lead to the gruesome deaths of five men, including his fiancee's young brother. Using stark detail, Poyer depicts the conditions of employees with no security or safety protection, subject to wage cuts to subsistence level pay when profits were threatened. Halvorsen sparks a brief walkout, catching the attention of the CIO, and Doris Golden, a strike organizer with secret Communist ties, is sent to unionize the oil industry, starting with Thunder. The movement gains momentum until a professional strike buster, Pearl Deatherage, convinces Thunner that brute force and political briberies will smash the workers' revolt. The ruthless Deatherage pushes Thunner further into the scab market, leading to murders that are blamed on the strikers. Then Bill comes up with a desperate plan. The terrifying denouement further illuminates the complexities of the workers' plight, yet there's not one scene of gratuitous violence in a novel full of violent death. Poyer's (As the Wolf Loves Winter) pitch-perfect dialogue and explosive imagery capture both sides of the bloody battle that gave birth to the unions. This is a stunning period tale in which the oft-forgotten essence of the American dream is visible in every chapter. - Publishers Weekly
24 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
Yesterday the high was 45° and the experts are guessing that today will reach a high of 43. The low temperature this morning was 39° so it is not going to warm up much if they are right. The average humidity dropped only one percent to 79% which was not a problem. It was the same weather conditions as yesterday with rain as the added feature.
I dressed the same also but added my heavy waterproof coat as a top layer. I stayed warm and dry but Patches did not fair as well and she was very happy to do a short potty walk ( wasn't even picky about where she went) and glad to get home and in front of the Wave 6. I'll have it on a lot again today and tomorrow as I did yesterday. Hondo is having some winter with the rain expected to turn into ice pellets during the night.
As bad as it is here I knew that I had to get out of Ardmore, OK. There were freezing lows a week after I left and it is snowing there today. My move south has been reasonably well timed with regard to temperature although I have had the high humidity since I left Custer, SD back in September.
I went to the Club House and exchanged 3 more books. This time I traded a Hoag and a Pryor for two more books by those authors. The third one was for a unknown, to me, author but was of sufficient thickness that it appeared to be a worthy trade. I am now reading the books that I picked up at the library in Ardmore which were mostly authors that were unfamiliar to me and are not of great length so I'm going through them rather quickly. It is a good thing that I have a good selection here to chose from.
July 2nd, 2008—Obama delivered a speech in Boulder, Colorado in which he promised the creation and establishment of a “Civilian National Security Force.” He further promised it would be “just as powerful, just as strong, just as well funded as the US Military.”
Federal grants provided by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) have “transformed local police departments into small, army-like forces, and put intimidating equipment into the hands of civilian officers. Small counties and cities throughout the country are now being “gifted” with 20-ton Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles. A Texas county sheriff’s department owns a $300,000 pilot less surveillance drone, like those used to hunt down al Qaeda terrorists while an Arizona sheriff is now the proud owner of a surplus Army tank.
The Department of Homeland Security has delivered roughly $34 billion to police departments throughout the country since 9/11, ostensibly to purchase more gear for their steady growing arsenals of military weapons and equipment. Then you can add to that the vast amounts of money confiscated in drug raids that is earmarked to purchase equipment. There are approximately the same number of police in the US as there are Army and Marine service men and women. Therefore, I would say this is one promise that the President has made some significant progress in keeping.
25 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
Yesterday the high was 43° but it happened during the very early hours of the day and then got colder during the day. I was right, it didn't warm up much. The average humidity was up two percent to 81% which was surprising since we got an official 0.31" of rain that seemed to be a heavy mist all day.
We are getting a repeat of that weather today. The low this morning was 37° and we had an official 0.49" of rain by 10:30. Patches and I tried to do a walk this morning but got caught in a shower and rather damp by the time we turned around and got home. I don't think it is weather related but she was throwing up sick after we got home. She probably found something on the street to eat again - dumb dog.
I have been using a lot of propane the past few days and the idiot light starting showing 1/4 full yesterday. I couldn't find any place on-line in Hondo where I could go to get it filled so I went to the Park office to inquire. It so happens that they have a truck that comes around the Park on Tuesday so I have signed up for a re-fill. Most places that I have ever been the trucks will not fill the tanks on a motor home but they do here - got lucky.
A good analysis about why President Obama has not been able to lie his way out of the ObamaCare crisis in Why Obama can’t wave away this scandal by John Podhoretz for The New York Post
People are puzzled: Why would Barack Obama have lied about how wonderfully everything was going to go with ObamaCare when officials in his administration knew perfectly well that disaster was going to strike?
...They did it because they could. They did it because nearly five years in the White House had given Obama and his team confidence they would not face the music and they could finesse the problems until they got fixed...
So, if you want to understand the blindness and arrogance of the Obama White House in failing to appreciate the wave of rage and disappointment and disgusted wonderment that would hit them in the wake of the ObamaCare rollout, you need only consider these factors.
He has always had the protection of his liberal base. He has always had the protection of Senate Democrats...And he has always had the protection of the mainstream media.
As a result, Barack Obama and his administration have said what they felt they needed to say and done what they felt they needed to do for immediate political gain. They did so this time. But this time was different, because this time he was mishandling and discrediting the great liberal desideratum of our time — a national health-care system. This time he hasn’t gotten away with it - Yet.
26 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
Yesterday the temperature moved up to a high of 48° with the low temperature this morning at 36°. The average humidity yesterday was the same as the day before at 81%. The official measurement of 0.49" of rain that we got yesterday was all recorded before 10:30 but I know there was some more fall here in the afternoon. It is warming very slowly but the experts think it will reach a high of 59 today (don't think so) and be back in the low 70s by Saturday.
We did a slightly shorter morning walk and then went to town. For my last breakfast at El Charro I ordered off the menu. Asked for chicken enchiladas with two eggs over easy on top, beans, potatoes and corn tortillas. Had some coffee of course and it still all cost me less than $10, a breakfast price that it was hard for me to find anyplace since back in New Mexico.
Then stopped at H-E-B again for groceries and gas. The price had gone up by 14¢ since last week which I don't understand. Crude oil prices have been below $100/barrel and peace broke out in the Middle East this week with Iran and Secretary of State John Kerry (who served in Vietnam) agreeing on when they could make a nuclear bomb. I didn't completely fill the tank but got close enough when the pump shut me down at $100.
The propane truck was a little late today. He had a lot of business and always goes to the people that say the are totally empty first. The driver said he had been on the go since 7:30 this morning. It had not warmed up much, 44° and the wind was blowing at 11:30 when he got to me, felt like it was 36° with the windchill. It didn't take him long to put 10.9 gallons in my tank which should get me through the winter. I last filled up when I was in Pahrump, NV on April 4th and hope this tank last me until I get back there.
27 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
I was right, the high temperature yesterday was 54° or 5 degrees less than the experts were forecasting. The average humidity yesterday dropped a lot from the day before to 65%. The low temperature this morning was down a couple more degrees to 34° and the weather guessers are sticking with their predicted 57 for today (I think they may get it).
I have changed my breakfast scramble again this week. Replaced the Jalepeños with some fresh Asparagus while leaving all the other ingredients the same. I bought slim shoots thinking that they would be the most tender and perhaps they were but I still found them to be rather 'woody'. I might have been happier if I had boiled them before adding to the scramble.
Also changed the main entree for my 'linners' this week. I usually have some kind of one pot dish that I cook up in my Thermal Cooker. This week I have gone to a skillet stir fry. Not much to it: Brussels sprouts cut into 3-4 pieces, about 4 oz of firm tofu diced into small squares, diced portabella mushroom stirred in a little olive oil. Then just before serving I added some sweet chili sauce and a little cayenne powder. This is eaten with or after some garlic hummas and Snezhanka salad. Good!
This is the first Lynne Heitman novel that I have read. She has written only 4 at this time so finding another one is not going to be easy. I did enjoy this one and will keep her in mind when doing exchanges in the future.
An intricate and explosive, thriller involving money laundering, murder, drug trafficking and used parts fraud, Heitman's second novel (Hard Landing} finds gutsy airline manager Alex Shanahan in peril and embroiled in a mystery once again. Despite her lack of any formal investigative skills, and only days before beginning a new job m Detroit, Alex heads to Miami following the inexplicable murder of her friend and former coworker, John McTavish. Her only leads are a charred aircraft logbook and a diamond ring, both confiscated from an Ecuadorian plane crash and sent to her by John prior to his death. When she unwisely decides to follow a suspect to a remote salvage yard, she meets and teams up with retired FBI agent Jack Dolan, who is coincidentally there to investigate the deaths of two police officers. Together they discover what John had stumbled upon - a black market for used aircraft parts masterminded by a notorious drug lord and a bloodthirsty Vietnam veteran. Heitman pilots this mystery with a sure hand, her airline expertise and in-depth knowledge of the multi-million dollar "used parts" business lending it a chilling reality. Her diverse cast of supporting characters including a beautiful money laundress, a power-hungry FBI rookie and a young computer whiz, round out this tightly woven, compelling read. - Publishers Weekly
Obamacare's Threat to Liberalism by Franklin Foer in the New Republic is a good article that tells a story about the development of Liberalism. The author tells it 'straight' and I'm a little surprised that it was published considering the left-leaning bias of New Republic. These are the opening paragraphs.
There’s a term of art that the Obama White House uses to describe its neurotic supporters who instantly race to the worst-case scenario: They are known as “bed-wetters.” Two months into the dysfunctional life of healthcare.gov, however, that seems a perfectly appropriate physiological reaction.
Liberalism has spent the better part of the past century attempting to prove that it could competently and responsibly extend the state into new reaches of American life. With the rollout of the Affordable Care Act, the administration has badly injured that cause, confirming the worst slurs against the federal government. It has stifled bad news and fudged promises; it has failed to translate complex mechanisms of policy into plain English; it can’t even launch a damn website. What’s more, nobody responsible for the debacle has lost a job or suffered a demotion. Over time, the Affordable Care Act’s technical difficulties can be repaired. Reversing the initial impressions of government ineptitude won’t be so easy.
28 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
We were all correct, the high temperature yesterday was 55° or 2 degrees less than the experts were forecasting; I'll let them claim this as a correct call. The average humidity dropped a quite a bit more from the day before to 53%. The low temperature this morning eased down a couple more degrees to 32° - which was freezing - HA. There are better days to come however. The next few days are forecast to move from 61 today to the mid 70s by Monday with the lows getting back up into the 50s.
I did some more multi-tasking this morning. When I took Patches out for her walk I took my laundry with me and stopped at the Club House to get it into the wash cycle before continuing our walk. Stopped after a tour around the Park and had to wait a few minutes but then got the dry cycle started.
After completing another lap around the Park I saw John's bicycle at the Club House so took Patches home and feed her breakfast. Joined John for some socializing until the cloths were dry. A very busy day for me!
I became current again with reading my Monthly blogs yesterday, as current as I ever get anyway. It always feels like I have accomplished something when I am current with blogs and the links for Will Rogers weekly article links as a new month approaches. Now if I could only find the motivation to get the house cleaning chores taken care of.
29 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: WA155 November 29, 1925
I'm not going to give the weather gurus a correct guess for yesterday, the high temperature yesterday was 57° or 4 degrees less than they were forecasting. The average humidity moved back up a little from the day before to 58%. The low temperature this morning was up only one degree to 33°. The forecast remains for warming but it did not happen yesterday or this morning - I can still hope although it was overcast again this morning and warming very slowly.
I was not exactly motivated but it just had to be done so I got to it. Cleaned the toilet, bathroom sink and got all the toothpaste splatters off the over sink mirror. I keep telling myself that it would be a much easier chore IF I would simply do it more often but self will just not listen. I then drug the vacuum cleaner out and gave the floors a few passes to pick up mostly dog hair. Maybe get down and wash the bathroom and kitchen floors but it is not going to be today.
This is a portion of an article The Hunger Games and the Moral Imagination by James E. Miller written for The Ludwig Von Mises Institute of Canada (“Mises Canada”). I have not been to a movie theater in decades and do not intend on going to see this movie however the article does make me want to read the trilogy written by Suzanne Collins.
Yet most viewers of the Hunger Games will not let that message sink into their consciousness. They will not make the connection between a story and their own lives. It’s far too discomforting. At the same time, they will revere characters in a tale who come off as heroes. These fictional thought constructs are viewed as perfectly noble persons who sacrifice for the greater good. One would think the same reverence would be shown to those individuals who engage in the same art of defiance against what is generally deemed an unjust situation. If characters in fiction can be seen as courageous, why not real-life persons who display the same type of behavior?
Edward Snowden, the now-infamous whistleblower of the National Security Agency, is still seen as a dirty, rotten traitor by much of the public. It’s a strange cognitive dissonance that while a majority are irate over their government’s spying, they see the man who clued them in as some type of mendacious plotter who hates Uncle Sam. It’s equally as strange that the same folks who hardly bat an eye when calling Snowden a scumbag will just as quickly latch on to the fighter of injustice in a movie.
Hunger Games contains a pertinent message to those living under big government. The heroes and villains of the story should not be unfamiliar to current events. Edward Snowden is a real life Katniss Everdeen. He defied the powers-that-be in order to do what he believed was right. But instead of receiving praise, he got condemnation from voices normally wary of statism. The irony remains that the same men and women who call Snowden a traitor should be cheering for the tyrannical government of Panem to squash the rebellion and restore its oppressive hold on society. Of course, that suggestion sounds crazy, but then so does the person who pays lip-service to freedom while cheering for the death of someone who risks their life for greater liberty. Their moral imagination is in great need of fine-tuning.
30 November 2013 Lone Star Corral SKP Park (Hondo, TX)
The high temperature yesterday was 64° just a little below what the experts were forecasting. The average humidity moved back up quite a bit from the day before to 72%. The low temperature this morning jumped up to 52° which made for a very pleasant walk. The forecasters have also raised their predictions for the next few days; they think it will reach 72 today (I think not) and near 80 for Mon - Wed.
I went to the Club House for coffee and maybe a last visit with John this morning. It has been good to find someone to visit with and have an intelligent conversation. I don't do groups very well so this has been a good stop for me to get in some socializing. I was also able to trade two more books with the Park library getting the better of the deal I think by picking up an Iles and a Lescroat.
One of the trades was this book that I picked up in Custer or Ardmore where I did not have much to chose from. Not sure why I picked it, not my usual kind of book. I have said that I will read anything and if confronted I have this book to support my claim. P D James is another British woman mystery writer that I will give the benefit of the doubt and try another of her books if I find one. This book is not representative of her usual mystery novel and as Publishers Weekly says perseverance is required for the first half. It is a shorter book than most of those that I select so I moved through the second half rather quickly when the action picked up.
In her 12th book, the British author of the two series featuring Adam Dalgleish and Cordelia Gray ( Devices and Desires and An Unsuitable Job for a Woman , respectively) poses a premise that chills and darkens its setting in the year 2021. Near the end of the 20th century, for reasons beyond the grasp of modern science, human sperm count went to zero. The last birth occurred in 1995, and in the space of a generation humanity has lost its future. In England, under the rule of an increasingly despotic Warden, the infirm are encouraged to commit group suicide, criminals are exiled and abandoned and immigrants are subjected to semi-legalized slavery. Divorced, middle-aged Oxford history professor Theo Faron, an emotionally constrained man of means and intelligence who is the Warden's cousin, plods through an ordered, bleak existence. But a chance involvement with a group of dissidents moves him onto unexpected paths, leading him, in the novel's compelling second half, toward risk, commitment and the joys and anguish of love. In this convincingly detailed world--where kittens are (illegally) christened, sex has lost its allure and the arts have been abandoned--James concretely explores an unthinkable prospect. Readers should persevere through the slow start, for the rewards of this story, including its reminder of the transforming power of hope, are many and lasting. - Publishers Weekly