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What They Really Don’t Need

How about a moderate-sized Nor’easter off the coast of New York and New Jersey next Wednesday?

Dr Masters has the forecast.

So, do we get to talk about Climate Change yet, or must we pretend it doesn’t exist to protect the energy industry and the science deniers? When does the media start dealing with the people who refuse to accept reality as the liars and/or delusional people they really are?

47 comments

1 Badtux { 11.03.12 at 1:15 pm }

What annoys me most about the climate change deniers is that, scam or not, climate change could be seriously *profitable*. Replacing all these dirty old coal-powered power plants with solar, wind, and nuclear? PROFIT, dude, pure profit! Replacing all these old inefficient cars and trucks with new technologies like plug-in hybrids? PROFIT, dude, pure profit! Building light rail in every city and high speed rail between every major city? PROFIT, dude, pure profit! Giant seawalls around every major coastal city to keep them from going underwater? Dude, it’s like coining money! It’s as if the climate change deniers don’t care about making money, they just want to make sure nobody *else* makes money. Spite. That’s the only thing that could be motivating climate change deniers. Because given the potential profits involved, even if it *were* a scam they ought to be jumping all over it proposing solutions that would, coincidentally, put lots of spare change into their own pockets!

- Badtux the Baffled Penguin

2 Bryan { 11.03.12 at 8:30 pm }

Like you say, WTF!, turning down a huge new market. It is as if they just want to milk every last nickel out of old technology before they consider anything new. I think that the business schools are producing MBAs who are totally risk adverse. They have a standard plan for making a lot of money for themselves and they won’t deviate from it.

I had a client who was involved in wind farms including at Tehachapi, and they were constantly complaining about having to buy their turbines from Europe. They were totally baffled that no US firm was bothering with the wind power business.

The stalling has allowed everyone else take over the market without even putting up a fight. Business would rather invest in T-Bills than technology.

3 Badtux { 11.03.12 at 11:23 pm }

Well, thanks to Obama’s alternate energy initiative you can now get American-made wind turbines. Of course, that’s one of the things Teh Romney says he wants to eliminate because of course if wind turbines were any good then the magical free market would have created them with a wave of the free market fairy’s magic wand, just like with the Internet :twisted:.

4 Bryan { 11.04.12 at 10:43 am }

That is a major step forward, because those guys were watching losses mount when they were waiting for parts from Scandinavia. It’s not like we weren’t making propellers and alternators in this country, or that the labor costs in Europe were so low, but no one wanted to make them.

5 Kryten42 { 11.04.12 at 12:39 pm }

I was reading a local article a few days ago about a Princeton Scientist that predicted the floods 8 mths ago.

Scientist predicted New York flooding

I watched TDS (after fixing my PC) and was amazed, and impressed, to see Gov. Chris Christie (who a week ago was bashing Pres. Obama) was praising the President and thanking him profusely. and then he went on to tell the FAUX bobbleheads (who proved they don’t give a rats arse about the suffering people) to basically go screw themselves when they asked if he wanted the Mitster there, and said he didn’t give a damn about Mitty, he was busy saving his city!

A quick scan of news items shows that the right wingnuttia news are calling Christie a GOP Traitor etc., which is understandable as none of them care about anyone but themselves.

So, I guess some rethugs can actually understand reality, when they are drowning anyway! *sigh*

Is Chris Christie a GOP Traitor for His Obama Hurricane Praise?

Sadly, I think this disaster was a big help to Obama, and has killed Mitty and the Rethugs. (I mean that it’s sad that it takes a tragic human disaster to do it).

Good luck to everyone in affected areas. Stay smart, stay safe.

6 Bryan { 11.04.12 at 4:10 pm }

Christie understands that he needs Federal help, and is doing everything he can to maximize it. There aren’t enough ‘true-believers’ to elect anyone to anything beyond the local level, and if Christie wants to run for re-election or another political office, he needs to be successful in the recovery of New Jersey.

7 Badtux { 11.04.12 at 11:22 pm }

I think Christie has given up on running for President, and now is running for re-election as governor of New Jersey. To do that he has to, well, take care of his constituents, duh. He’s still an odious blow-hard, but he’s not an idiot. He’s never been an idiot. Hmm, that alone disqualifies him from being a modern Republican presidential candidate :twisted:.

8 Bryan { 11.05.12 at 10:13 am }

Given the attacks by the wingnuts, I think you’re right, Badtux. The nutters can’t elect anyone, but they can affect the choice of a Republican nominee to a great extent.

As long as the M$M treats the talking points of the right fringe as serious, there is no escape from the madness.

9 hipparchia { 11.05.12 at 9:16 pm }

i’m hoping that christie gives moderately-sane conservatives the inspiration to take back their party from the far-right radicals.

10 Bryan { 11.05.12 at 11:41 pm }

Falling apart and starting again under a new name is something the party that currently calls itself Republican has done before.

We need at least three parties – left, center, and right – but currently we have center right and far right. We need a party that represents the left.

11 Kryten42 { 11.06.12 at 9:07 am }

It seems to be happening in several countries Bryan, including here. They are all moving further right. Why is that? It’s obvious to anyone with a working brain that the extreme right ideology has never worked and will never work. If you ask me, the World is getting dumber as population increases. Seems the avg IQ is dropping, not rising. Actually, it’s not even about intelligence (though that would help), just pain old common sense seems to be a thing of the past. *shrug*

We have the same choice here now, extreme right and center-right.

Maybe the change in weather and *global warming* is somehow increasing stupidity as well? Seems *coincidental* to me! ;) :lol:

I dunno what the answer is (well, if it 8were* up to me, I’d probably be leaning towards the *scrap everything and start again* option. So, good thing it’s not up to me, eh? :twisted:

12 Badtux { 11.06.12 at 10:24 am }

Kryten, I think it is the increasing sophistication of the global propaganda system that is allowing the right and far-right to hijack the public conversation and insert their agenda into the conversation as “established wisdom”. When I look at WW2 propaganda it is almost laughably crude compared to the propaganda I saw here in the US in the leadup to the U.S. War on Terra in Afghanistan and Iraq, and currently being used to drum up a war against Iran. There were/are Americans genuinely frightened by the possibility of Iran nuking New York City, for example, even though Iran would have to strap the bomb to the back of a suicide bomber who walked on water across the Atlantic to get a bomb to New York City (good luck with that one, I’m aware of only once instance of where a human being is alleged to have walked on water and even there I’m dubious :twisted:). There’s a notion that television bores straight past the thinking critical parts of the human brain, that the human brain is more inclined to believe things said on television and less inclined to question those things because it comes in via multiple sensory channels (both visual and auditory). Add in corporate ownership of those television channels, and… (shrug). You have the Living Dead, infected with the virus of far-right-wing thought, shambling mindlessly mumbling “austerity…. austerity… austerity…” in a search to avoid having brains.

It’s a theory, anyway :).

13 Kryten42 { 11.06.12 at 12:22 pm }

I agree that the medium is far more invasive, and getting more-so daily. But that doesn’t disprove my argument. I don;t believe the propaganda when I hear or see it 9and I see it everywhere), you don’t, Bryan doesn’t, hipparchia, Steve… and others see it for what it is. The problem is that (it seems to me) fewer people can tell the difference between reality and fantasy, or can even be bother to do some simple checking before they start believing the crap. It also doesn’t address the fact that once these people do start believing the propaganda, it is virtually impossible to change their beliefs. I was born and raised a Catholic. By the time I was 16, I saw it for what it was. Rank hypocrisy, and stopped believing. I didn’t stop believing in (the possibility of) God, I stopped believing in religion. The extremists are clever. They wrap their insanity in the cloak of Religion and faith. And many people seem to prefer it that way. Far easier to *believe* than to think.

“Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men: gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?”
–Mathew 7:16

I spent many Thursday eve’s and Sundays in Bible Study (I was an Altar boy for several years). I remember it well. These morons who believe what they are being told by these snake oil cretins can’t even be bothered to read and understand the Book they profess to believe in!

As I said above, it’s probably a good thing it’s not up to me. I also remember the other part from Mathew:

Judge not, that ye be not judged.
For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.
And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?
Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.
Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.

(Sorry for those who can’t read ye olde English — I was raised on the King James version, but it’s difficult to post the *pretty picture* edition on a blog.) :lol:

And that is one of the many *apparent* contradictions I had a problem with (first I was told to watch out for false prophets and have nothing to do with them, then I was told it was a sin to judge anyone! But if I cannot judge, how can I know who the false prophet’s are??) When I asked the Father about it, I was told it wasn’t a contradiction but that I didn’t understand. and that was the only answer I was ever given (well that and: “Be quiet and stop causing trouble!”) I forgot that the #1 rule for *Faith* (and, let us not forget, it is actually called “Blind Faith”) is: “Never question!” :) After all, the Church did have a reputation for centuries for killing anyone who questioned! :twisted”

I can’t abide hypocrites. So fine, if there is a God, then he will deal with me, and so be it. I will ask him only one question. “What the hell was all that crap about?” He’ll know what I mean. maybe, I will even get an answer. Might be nice, since I’ve never found one while I’ve been alive. *shrug* Whatever happens… Happens!

mehhhh… Death is too good for them!

If there is a Christian God, and there is a Heaven, I want the job of standing by the pearly gates for eternity, laughing at all these bewildered morons who can’t understand why they can’t get in! LMAO I think God would love the irony of that! He must have one heck of a sense of humor… even Blind Freddy can see that! :lol:

14 Bryan { 11.06.12 at 2:51 pm }

When things go wrong most people look for someone to lead them, rather than getting down to the job of surviving. Anyone who will tell people that the monumental cock-up isn’t their fault and that they have a cunning plan to set things right, will get followers.

Too many people accept the generally bogus concept that money is the equivalent of intelligence and G*d’s favor, rather than the cronyism and dumb luck that is usually behind it. It doesn’t occur to them that Donald Trump probably couldn’t come up with a thousand dollars in cash in less than week, because he would have to borrow it from someone else. People like Trump who have lost more money than Greece and has a dedicated bankruptcy courtroom, are given a stage by the media.

Few people realized that the Mortgage Bankers Association defaulted on the mortgage for their new headquarters. They just walked away. People who are stuck with houses worth less than what they owe are considered almost criminal for walking away.

Like Badtus says, the propaganda is bombarding people. I was immunized by reading tons of it spewed by the Soviets, and I see English versions coming out the mouths of the talking heads in the media all the time. Hearing people call Zero a socialist or the M$M liberal is absurd, but the rightwing is successful in making too many people believe in lies.

15 Badtux { 11.07.12 at 12:52 am }

I think those involved with intelligence services at some point know too much about the techniques to be taken in. As for myself, I am quite aware that my brain doesn’t work the same way as most people’s brain. Not saying it works better or worse, just differently. In an age of chimpanzees, I am a penguin.

Most people don’t question what they’re told. They were punished for questioning what their parents told them when young, and frankly see no gain in questioning what they are told. So they are ripe for propagandizing. If the media is wholly under the sway of oligarchs, they will believe whatever propaganda gets catapulted by the media.

Orwell was wrong. The future was not 1984. There is no need for the foot stamping on the face of the world forever if the world does whatever the bearer of the foot wishes without any force needed at all, just constant bombardment with increasingly sophisticated propaganda 24/7. So it goes.

16 Kryten42 { 11.07.12 at 6:39 am }

Hmmmm. Yes, I suspect you are both correct, and have had similar thoughts. I’ve found that people who have had military service and been involved in combat, especially over a lengthy period and have had to be involved with the civilians especially, LEO’s, and people who have been involved in security/intel services (especially at ground level or analysts etc), do tend to have a much more realistic understanding of the World, and people. though, I have met some exceptions to that! Some *true believers* will never change, no matter how often you show them proof to the contrary of their beliefs, even in the fields I’ve mentioned (and I’m sure you have experienced similar Bryan). Of course, there are some people who are just plain stupid. *shrug* ;)

Actually, I made an error when I posted my above comment. I don’t like to take things out of context, or post such. And I have bashed the fundie cretins often over the way the *ALWAYS* (and purposely) ignore context and cherry pick the bits they like to spout. The first Biblical quote from Mathew 7:16 is one of those lines they like to take out of context 9and why I posted it that way.) The full verse is:

Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.

I was surprisingly lucky enough to meet with an Anglican minister who was quite intelligent, rational and sane to boot! A rare combination in my experience. ;) :D Once he knew of my problems with the Bible, he offered to spend some time discussing the issues with me. At first I was reluctant, and I decided to explain why. He understood. So, I decided to give it a try. We spent many an enjoyable evening (usually Tues. or Fri.) and we went over some of the verses I found to be troublesome. There were a few. he told me, that he had had a similar problem with, and had spent considerable time investigation and discussing with others.

One of our conclusions was that the verse (from Luke 6) against judging others (and one that so many cretins take out of context purposely), does not mean you cannot or should not judge others, but that you should not do so whilst you have not honestly judged yourself! I have always tried to be honest with myself, and I know my faults and failings, I do not hide from them because an honest man cannot! One of the things we did was condense it into a plain English truth: “You cannot be honest with anyone, if you cannot be honest with yourself.” Once I understood this, I realised that the two verses are not in fact contradictory at all. :)

Another from the Gospel according to St. Mathew that many of the hypocrites ignore or purposely missunderstand is:

Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

That goes with the verse of the “false prophets”.

One more for the road (what the heck, I’m on a roll!) :lol:

Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.
And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine: for he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.

And yes badtux, I understand why you style yourself a Penguin. I don’t see myself as one of the monkeys in the cute little jacket and hat, with the organ, on a leash held by the self-styled *master* looking for a handout. ;) If I were to style myself after some creature… Perhaps a Hawk. They are good at hunting and removing vermin! ;) I was very good at that once. A shame my team and I were not able to continue when we returned home. I better not get started there, this will end up as a book! Oh well… ;)

I haven’t watched TV for a long time. I get what I need from the ‘net. When i see the obvious propaganda, it just makes me laugh. :) I have my fave TV series, and I can d/l them without any ad’s! I save a lot of time and annoyance that way! Others, i get on DVD. I just got the two seasons of ‘The Munsters’ (about 70 episodes) off eBay for $6! A bargain. ;) :D And I have my (quite large) music collection. When I had to start moving around, I ripped all my CD’ and Vinyl to MP3 (or LAME) on DVD’s (Verbatim Archival Grade Gold DVD’s, burnt on a Plextor PX-716). Instead of carting around a several hundred LP’s and a couple thousand CD’s in bulky plastic cases. I reduced them to a spindle of long-life DVD’s (and scanned the artwork). It took quite awhile, but was worth it. I now have them all mirrored onto two Enterprise 1TB HDD’s, in two old steel cash-boxes, packed with high-density anti-static foam. I have an eSATA Dock on my desk (it’s like a *toaster* for HDD’s!) that I use to create backups, and also to *refresh* my archived HDD’s (which I do every 3 to 6 Mth’s). :)

Well, talk about going off the beaten track! :lol: ;)

17 Bryan { 11.07.12 at 11:11 pm }

There are a lot of jobs where the failure to recognize reality is a fatal mistake, so if you survive you know how to see through the smoke and mirrors.

I read a lot of propaganda because the best lies contain a kernel of truth, and that is what we were looking for – the nuggets among the rocks. The information was there if you knew what to look for, which is why senior officials read the newspapers.

A big difference between the Soviet and American versions, is there amazing lack of ‘nuggets’ in US papers. They aren’t even very good at propaganda. They print total lies without any reality to give them substance. Major media companies have moved from the non-fiction to the fiction section of the library. The people in control have no respect for their customers.

My problem with the fundies making statements about the ‘inerrancy’ of the Bible is that I have had Jewish neighbors who got into knock down drag out fights over the meaning of a phrase in the Torah. If these guys couldn’t agree on the meaning of the original language version of the first five books of the Bible, how can’t anyone claim that translations of books from multiple languages are ‘inerrant’?

The people pushing this sort of nonsense are garden variety petty dictators who, like all their ilk, claim G*d is on their side. I’m fairly certain that as soon as anything they say turns out to be wrong, they are supposed to be stoned. I remember reading that somewhere near where they are told they should die for eating shrimp or a ham and cheese on rye.

18 Badtux { 11.08.12 at 3:01 am }

I grew up in the Bible Belt so know the cant quite well, but once I got over the notion that I might actually successfully pretend to be “normal” as defined in the Bible Belt, I was much happier. For some time I was unchurched because organized religion was at best a social organization for people who had no social life of their own rather than something that had anything to say about anything, but after a while it seemed pretty clear to me that religion as a whole was utterly unnecessary in order to explain anything about morality or the universe. Simple utilitarianism is all that is necessary to show that societies that care about the education of their children, where people are kind to each other and try to help each other, and so forth, simply work better. No invisible sky demon ready to send down lightning bolts upon the heads of sinners required, just a willingness to observe reality as it is.

One of the most poisonous ideas that has invaded the Republican party is a nihilistic philosophy that there is no objective reality, that reality is created by their collective desires and wishes. I think that a number of Republicans in high places actually believe there is no global warming not because of anything to do with objective reality, but, rather, because they believe that if they state that 1+1=3 often enough and with enough sincerity, 1+1 really *will* be 3. If you do not believe there is an objective reality outside of the perceptions you create for yourself, then you cannot learn from objective reality. The aftermath of the current election, where Turdblossom could not believe that the Republicans lost Ohio and had a meltdown on national television, show the problem with that philosophy though — what happens when objective reality raises its nasty head and pokes through your self-delusions? Well, it is not pretty.

Unfortunately, many Americans appear utterly unacquainted with the notion of “objective reality.” They can’t tell the difference between a “reality show” on TV and real life. Modern life insulates people from a lot of the harsh realities that once were common, such as where does food come from (hint: it’s hard friggin’ work growing it), how do you deal with poop if you have no electricity (outhouses tend to acquaint you with the realities of disposal of poop in a rather up close and odiferous manner), what is it like to be truly cold, or hungry, or tired… most Americans haven’t a clue. They’ve never been confronted with any of these things. One reason why I am going to take a week-long vacation in the Great Outdoors sometime in the next few weeks is not because I really enjoy slogging around in the desert outback with a backpack (though I do enjoy looking at some of the historical sites), but because it makes me appreciate civilization that much more once I get back (hot water, in particular, is a marvelous invention… what I miss most in the outback is a nice warm shower). Objective reality is rather up close and personal when you’re squatting over a cathole in near-freezing weather, heh. But most Americans never stray further than a few feet from civilization, take a photo or two, then drive home. So it goes.

19 Bryan { 11.08.12 at 10:54 pm }

A major problem today is the number of people who have no connection to the underlying system that supports their lives. They don’t have contact with farms, so they don’t understand where food comes from and why droughts and flooding in some places screws everything up. They don’t understand about barge traffic on the Mississippi, or where the refineries are located, or where their water comes from, or their electricity, or anything else.

Hell, the small apartments my Mother manages have fuses, not circuit breakers and the tenants freak out if they lose power. They can’t change the flapper in their toilet, and don’t know enough to use the cut-off valves on the plumbing. They are helpless.

I look at the devastation caused by Sandy, reports of the cold, and wonder why no one is lighting a campfire with the scrap lumber all around them. I doubt many people even have a pocket knife or matches any more.

You, Kryten, or I would switch to camping mode and set up a shelter, etc. using what we could find. We would establish what we needed for survival and then worry about getting in contact with the ‘authorities’ to see if they had something better to offer. Doing nothing but waiting for someone else to rescue you, is a good plan if you are suicidal.

I appreciate the modern ‘conveniences’ more than most people because I’ve been in a lot of places where they didn’t exist, so I know what a wonder they really are. I personally don’t absolutely need air conditioning to live down here, but, damn, it sure is nice and I am happy to use it.

Tonight we have frost warnings, so staying warm is more important, but I can stay warm even without power because I have the equipment to do it, not counting my 50 pounds of feline heating power.

20 Badtux { 11.09.12 at 2:00 am }

50 pounds of feline heating power…. can’t breathe… :lol:

Definitely we have a problem. Perhaps we could stage an intervention — put backpacks on all the useless people and make them experience objective reality up close and personal for an extended period of time. Unfortunately, I suspect the only lesson they’d really learn is that we were mean to them. Siiiiigh.

- Badtux the Bummed Penguin

21 Kryten42 { 11.09.12 at 4:36 am }

Yes, I know what you both mean, and feel the same. I smiled reading your comment (#19) Bryan, because I realised that I am prepared and have been most of my life. I have my two knives, a proper hunting knife with a proper scabbard and a divers/fishing knife in a calf scabbard, fishing line and hooks etc., I have waterproof matches and a flint and striker (from my army days, was part of our survival kit), a waterproof tin of kerosene fuel/fire-starter cubes, I know how to make spears and a Woomera (spear-thrower), or a bow and arrows, and how to use them, I know how to dress a kill and cure the meat and hides, I have two compasses, but can use the sun or stars, even have a portable water purification kit (ex-military, or know how to use my lightweight, compact plastic/foil multi-purpose thermal sheet to get water via condensation, or to make a solar stove, or groundsheet, thermal blanket etc. I even still have my trusty Entrenching Tool with carrier (M-1951, I don’t like the newer Army versions) Oh, I still have my 2lt insulated canteen and my Swiss Army (official) knife & Victorinox SwissTool Spirit Plus (I got off eBay for a bargain of $157 a couple years ago) with leather pouches. :) I can fish, hunt game, reptiles, grubs, find edible roots… Yeah, i can survive. :) You reminded me that I have thought several times in recent years that I could solve my problems by finding a secluded cave near a mountain stream or river and survive in peace and quiet. :) I may yet do that… I know where I can get a good rifle (maybe a Ruger 10/22, reliable, accurate. and 22LR ammo is cheap and easy to find. or maybe a SR-22 as I prefer a pistol grip, I’m used to it) and even a Glock 17A w/ a few 17 round clips and maybe a couple 33′s, with Lugar 9mm Parabellum FMJ (flat trajectory, high penetration, long range) rounds (it’s my favorite sidearm). :) :lol: Now I sound like one of your NRA gun nuts! (Except, I know exactly how to use them and I don’t treat *survival* as a game or sport. I can take out a deer (or a man) at 75-100 yds with the Glock)! Heck, maybe I’d get one of the new Aus Army HK417 20″! :twisted: ;) Nahhh… For serious survival, I’d stick with Bow and spears, with something like the Ruger for backup. I once did a stint working for a blacksmith when I spent a few years working my way around Aus with a couple friends, and learned how to make horseshoes, axe heads, knife blades, and even nails! :) I can shear a sheep (with clippers), break a horse (and shoe one). I might even get a Jack Russell dog for company and get rabbit’s or foxes (they are very good at that, they are quite bold and fearless, but good companions). One of my favorite dog’s. Oh! They can also kill snakes! Handy in the bush! ;) :D

Jack the Jack Russell Terrier
(Looks exactly like a JR I had for years) :)

Wiki: Jack Russell Terrier

Ah well… it’s a nice idea. :) And who knows, it may become necessary one day. For me these days, it would be a perfect way to live, Sadly, I should have done it 20 years ago when i still had excellent health and fitness. Now, I’d have to get fit and healthy first, it’s a goal. And then… I may just do it. :) yeah, the cities really have little I can’t do without, and to be honest, I am fed-up and tired of people. With a horse and a dog, I’d be quite happy.

22 Bryan { 11.09.12 at 6:56 pm }

When they canceled the draft we lost that last major school in the US for learning to live without modern conveniences. Today people think that living in a Winnebago is ‘roughing it’. Scouting has cut back on the outdoors portion, so that they don’t really provide the training that was once available. We have become a nation of wimps.

Heading into the wilderness becomes more appealing, but you might have to deal with the survivalist crazies in the US. Getting away from the crazies is harder every year.

23 Kryten42 { 11.10.12 at 4:05 am }

Well m8, you’d be welcome here! Fewer crazies and still a LOT of places with no humans for miles and miles (the benefit of a large country with small population.) :D

And whatever crazies I did meet, wouldn’t pose a problem, even without the Glock! I actually prefer a bow to be honest, though I doubt I could draw a 120lb war bow as I used to! Could put a shaft through an oak! Might have to settle for something a bit more pedestrian, 40-60 lb draw hunting bow. The crazies usually go for crossbows, but they are less accurate and you can’t shoot as fast as with a bow. I might also get a set of throwing blades, just in case. ;) :lol:

Jeez! The more I think about it (getting away), the more appealing it get’s! *sigh* My doc has finally got me to take antidepressants, something I swore long ago I’d never do! My Councillor that I have been seeing over a year now, and whom I trust, also hates the idea, but thinks that the way things are for me right now that it might be a good idea, at least for a short while. My Doc said he believes I am suffering from MDD, which I have to say was something of a surprise. But I couldn’t argue with the results of the indicator questions he’s put to me three times the past 6 mth’s. They show I am getting seriously depressed more often. So, I’ll give them a shot. He prescribed something called Efexor FX (venlafaxine), 75mg/day. He showed me some scientific studies, and said they they may also help with my diabetes and to lose weight (which I am doing anyway, since I have days where I just don’t eat). Anyway, won’t know for a few weeks how effective they will be. In a way, I am kinda curious. :) The *Scientist* in me I guess, waking up from a long hibernation! :lol:

Yeah… I think it’s past time for me to *get out of the rat race*! :)

24 Bryan { 11.10.12 at 11:10 am }

People really are getting on my nerves lately, and it isn’t just Republicans and rightwing crazies. The Democrats seem to be on the verge of giving away everything they just won by making a ‘compromise’ with Congressional whackoes.

There is no ‘cliff’, and nothing agreed to is going to be valid for more than two years at most, so stop playing nice and start getting things done.

Stasis is death. The country had better start moving and getting people back to work, the sooner the better. The best way of reducing the deficit is with people working and paying taxes. Rebuilding the national infrastructure is a good place to start, and it’s the job of the Federal government to take care of it. As long as people want to pay the government to give them bonds, the government should take the money. Give the ‘customer’ what they want – the process is called capitalism.

25 hipparchia { 11.10.12 at 9:25 pm }

heya, kryten! i’ve got a friend who swears by effexor. hope you have good luck with it.

jack russells are wonderful dogs. if i ever get a small dog, it will be one of the terriers, love their fearlessness.

and i’m with you on the horse and dog combination. i used to spend hours riding my trusty steed through the woods with my two dogs, sometimes joined by other people’s dogs – which was a nice bonus, as i quite often ran into the crazy survivalist types. dunno what it is about being on horseback and surrounded by a pack of large-ish dogs, but even people armed with guns and bows are afraid of you. you’d think people with enough firepower to bring down a herd of charging elephants wouldn’t be afraid of a few german shepherds and doberman pinschers.

26 Kryten42 { 11.11.12 at 1:30 am }

Hey hipparchia! Thanks. :)

I’ve had bad experiences with people I’ve known on antidepressants. And it seems to me that the Medical Practitioners use them as something of “a panacea to all ill’s”. And they lie also. :) Mine told me that Efexor was perfectly safe and harmless etc, yadda… So after a little research I discovered that a large trial in Finland over 4 years (i think) showed a 60% increase in suicides (quite significant I would think). And there have been reports of many other side effects. *shrug*

It’s all trial-and-error at first. Won’t know for a few weeks I guess. But, when they work, they do seem to be effective. :)

Been thinking since my comment above about what kind of horse and dog’s I might have if I were in the wild. :)

Maybe a Mustang, or Quarter horse. If I were to head to the mountains, maybe a Kentucky Mountain horse. :) They are all strong, but fairly docile and easy to ride. I’ve heard that the Spotted Saddle horse is good for a hunter, strong, fast and not skittish around guns etc. :)

As for dogs, yeah… Definitely a Jack Russell, or two; and maybe two, or three Rhodesian Ridgebacks. They are a curious dog. :) Very strong and fast, a great hunter of anything from fowl or game birds to lions! They have a locking jaw. Very loyal and protective and usually aloof to strangers. And they can be a bit of a sook! :lol: I had one from a pup to full adult for some years. :) They are a pack animal, so more than one will make them happy and work well. they have to be well trained though, and you can’t be too hard on them, or they fall to pieces. :)

And yes, you are right about the fear of dogs. :) People will generally stay away, and I know a few people even now who are afraid to go near a dog, even a itty bitty Jack Russell! Dunno… *shrug* I’ve had dog’s all my life, I like them, better than most people actually. ;) :)

There is a house a couple blocks away which is on my way to the supermarket, and they have two dogs. A white haired Maltese cross, and a big Doberman. When I first went past, the terrier started barking like mad (as they do), and the Doberman had his head and paws on the fence giving me the *eye*. I just smiled (but didn’t show teeth, a common mistake people make) and said ‘Hello there. You are going a good job. Good boy.” and just kept walking. After a few times of this, I stopped and said Hello, and he gave a little grunt, and I slowly put my palm out for him to sniff. And he barked and started wagging his tail. :) I give him a scratch behind the ears now when he comes up, we are friends now. :) I’ve very rarely had a problem with dog’s, or most animals actually. :)

You’d be welcome my Lady! :D You know, when I read your comment, I had an image of you on a horse, surrounded by dog’s back in old Camelot! :lol:

You’d be welcome also Bryan. And who knows m8… Maybe, one day… ;) Who knows! :)

27 hipparchia { 11.11.12 at 7:46 am }

camelot is indeed an apt reference…

rhodesian ridgebacks are cool dogs. i’ve never had one of my own, but when i lived in texas i used to ride my horse past a farm that had several of them. some of the dogs would always stay and guard the farm and some of them would join us for a while. galloping along the dirt tracks through the almost-desert, miles and miles of open space, on a fast, smooth-moving horse, surrounded by lion hounds… damn, life is good sometimes.

ok, so not quite camelot, what with all the sand and prickly pears and hundred degree heat index… :)

when we moved east to the piney woods of almost-alabama, i used to love riding through the woods at night in the fog, or when the full moon was out. no packs of lion hounds here, but in my head i was always accompanied by a few deerhounds or wolfhounds. definitely mystical!

fortunately, i only encountered the survivalist types in the piney woods near the river, which was much further from home [and closer to where all the shepherds and dobermans lived!], and i only rode there in the daytime.

thanks for sparking some wonderful memories, kryten.

28 Kryten42 { 11.11.12 at 8:49 am }

My pleasure, mi Lady! ;) :D

Yeah, I’ve been having some good memories also since I posted. I’ve even been smiling! :lol:

I was given a horse when I was 12, a small dapple grey I named Tosca. :) He was a great horse, and loved to be ridden. He was very intelligent and loyal, and sparked my lifetime fascination with horses. As I mentioned above, I traveled Aus with friends and worked with a smith. I also helped catch wild Brumby’s and learned how to break them. :) They are an amazing Horse, and once trained are very loyal, docile and extremely strong. The horse breeds I mentioned above are ones I’ve always wanted to ride (and I did get to ride a Mustang and a Quarter Horse when I was in the USA). But If I were to *get away*, I’d probably head to the Aus Alps where best Brunby’s still roam free and catch one and break him for myself. :) hmm, I wonder if there is a Wiki…

Wiki: Brumby

Well, duh! What isn’t there a wiki about! :lol:

I miss my Ridgback, which I called Ridgy (was actually short for ‘Ridgy Didge’ – Aussie slang for ‘She’ll be right’, which is slang for ‘everything will be OK’, get it?) ;) :lol:

Wiki: Rhodesian Ridgeback

Hey, do you watch the TV Series ‘Merlin”? I was reluctant to watch it, but I had to sit with a friend’s two kids a few Months ago, and they love it. After a few episodes, I decided I liked it. Had some nice horses in it! ;) :lol: You could be the Morgan le Fay (or Lady Morgana, Morgana LeFay, etc.) Well, before she went right off the rails anyway. Me… Hmmm. Well, I thought my closes fit might be Lancelot (believe it or not!) :lol:

Unfortunately, whilst I can get the horse for free, the Saddle and other necessary bits would be expensive. This is one I like, being sold in the USA:

Brumby Rancher

So, as well as getting healthy and fit, I’d have to make some money (or become an outlaw, and we can guess how that would go! Might get away with it for awhile…) ;) :D

And thank you in return hipparchia, for reminding me of better days and good times. And reigniting a spark that I’d thought long gone. :)

29 hipparchia { 11.11.12 at 9:13 am }

nope, no tv, but i read, and enjoyed, lots of king arthur stories by various authors when i was a kid, and yes, i always identified more with lancelot than with any of the other characters.

that’s a pricey saddle for sure! way out of my price range. otoh, people ought to be able to make a living as artisans, whether they’re crafting saddles, or furniture, or violins, or dog collars, or …

30 Kryten42 { 11.11.12 at 12:40 pm }

Ha! That’s funny. :D I don’t have a (working) TV and don’t miss it (hasn’t worked for over a year, the tuner is stuffed, but I can play CD/DVD’s or plug in my HDD with all my fave movies and TV series, and no stupid advert’s! :D I get everything I need from the ‘net. ;)

I used to love reading, from a very young age. When I was in my 30′s and I had my own house and a successful business, I had over 1,000 books of all sorts in my *library* (I converted the dining room, which I had no need for). I had everything from fiction to reference. Encyclopedia’s (Britannica & Wold Book). I’d even began collecting manuscripts or first editions. :)

I became a member of The Folio Society, who produced some of the finest editions of the best books available (printed on a special paper that was acid and oil proof, protected from human hands). My King James Bible with Apocrypha came from there, only less than 1,000 were printed. My real treasure was their edition of ‘Alice’s Adventures under Ground’ limited edition, which led me to find a rare copy of the original handwritten/illustrated manuscript in Canada (only fewer than 80 survived). Kids absolutely loved it. All the kids that I allowed to read it said it was better than the printed book version now available. :) and you know, they were all so very careful with it after I explained how rare and special it was. :) Kids can be amazing sometimes. ;) :D I even loaned it to the Lewis Carol Society for an exhibition they had in Melb. about 15 years ago.

Sadly… they are all gone now. Some sold, some given away, some lost in a fire.

The reason for my choosing that saddle is that a couple of Cattle farmers (Ranchers to you) here told me once that if you have to spend all day on a horse, there is none better. And they last a long time also. :)

And yes, after working with a master blacksmith who could do magic with a hammer and forge (and who didn’t laugh too often at my inept attempts), I agree that artisans and true craftsmen deserve fair recompense, especially since it can take many days to produce an item truly worth having. :)

Do you read SciFi? I wonder if you have read the series ‘Amtrak Wars’ by Patrick Tilley? I think you might find them interesting (also, his book “Mission”). :) I have many authors I truly enjoy (especially Sir Terry Pratchett. One of my best investments a couple years ago was an Amazon Kindle 6″ eBook reader. I want to get the new Kindle Fire HD with 8.9″ display and more memory to hold more books! I may get myself one for Xmas. :) Not as *comforting* as a paper book, but a heck of a lot cheaper, and uses far less space (which is a real premium for me now)! Plus, the books can be read to me when my old eye’s get tired. :D

Ah well, It’s after 5AM now, and I am finally feeling tired. So I think I will try to get some sleep, not that I will. Don’t sleep much lately. :)

G’night my Lady, and Bryan and all! :D

31 Badtux { 11.11.12 at 2:32 pm }

I’m afraid my view of Camelot was forever ruined by “Monty Python and the Holy Grail”. Some watery tart handing out swords as a basis of government, indeed :).

Regarding horses, I’ve learned a lot about how life was in the areas of the West here that I’m interested in, and by and large prospectors did not bother with horses at all, because of one simple reason: Water. Horses require astounding amounts of water in order to survive (and let’s not mention that horses other than mustangs or their Australian equivalent are bred to subsist on grain and do *not* do well when totally grass-fed). After an experiment with camels did not work out (the environment is simply too different from their home environment), the hardy burro or donkey became the pack animal of choice, and shanks’ mare the human transportation of choice. We have wild horses in the Death Valley area, but they are restricted to a small area around Cottonwood Spring by the fact that any further is more than a few hours away from water, and they need to refill on a regular basis. But the burros are *everywhere* (well, except where the NPS has managed to catch and remove all of them). They apparently can go a couple of days without water without any harmful effect, and furthermore can drink water brackish enough to kill a human, nevermind a horse (which is even more sensitive to water quality than humans are). There is one spring I know of that basically drips a few gallons a day of water. That tiny little dripping spring supports a whole herd of a dozen wild burros (and supported a prospecter/miner and his burros back in the day, his partially-restored mining camp still stands a hundred yards away) and wouldn’t support a single horse.

Personally I’m not much into that kind of survivalist civilization avoidance. I *like* hot water and my furnace is happily chuckling away keeping me warm right now. In my opinion the way to avoid dying if civilization collapses is to, duh, don’t let civilization collapse. A week in the outback merely punctuates that statement for me. Yes, I can survive a fair bit outside of civilization, but I don’t want to — civilization is *way* underrated!

32 Bryan { 11.11.12 at 9:25 pm }

Like Badtux I like civilization and would really like to see it continue which is going to require some cooperation and knowledge to accomplish. We know how to do it, but you have to get enough people to agree to make the effort. When you have to deal with people who think switching to non-incandescent light bulbs and water-saving toilets is an attack on their civil rights, it would appear to be a rocky road ahead.

Camelot is a fun story if you don’t know a lot about the history of the British Isles, still when you have to suspend disbelief for the Federal budget, it doesn’t take much to suspend it for a legend.

I’ve shoveled too many barns to be overly fond of horses, and those I like and knew as a child are totally unsuited for the Outback, as they are draft horses. They do have the advantage that if you get cramps you can get up an exercise a bit on their backs. Alas, they require huge amounts of food and water to prosper, so they are totally unsuited to the wilderness.

It would be nice to get away for the noise and the stupid…

33 Badtux { 11.12.12 at 12:03 am }

Camelot is a fun story if you don’t know a lot about the history of the British Isles, still when you have to suspend disbelief for the Federal budget, it doesn’t take much to suspend it for a legend.

What is interesting is how comedy makes it impossible for me to suspend disbelief (“some watery tart” indeed, heh!). Jon Stewart has the same effect on me, once he’s finished skewering some recent mythological story, all I can do whenever someone in all seriousness tries to tell me that story again is chuckle at my remembrance of Jon Stewart’s skewering of that story.

Unfortunately the majority of the general public is rather more familiar with broad physical humor than with fine satirical humor in the vein of Monty Python or Jon Stewart. ‘Tis a pity. For with more skewering of sacred cows, we might have sufficient beef to build a better planet.

34 Kryten42 { 11.12.12 at 8:42 am }

Doesn’t bother me badtux. :) I’ve spent a lot of my life *roughing it*, and enjoyed it more than I am living in *civilization* (well, apart from the 2+ yr I spent roughing it in the Army when most of the time when we drank water from an unknown source or a stream, it was usually followed by a penicillin pill, and others! I leaned at an early age how to boil water, so getting hot water isn’t an issue. :) and there are several ways this can be done efficiently now.

One of the reasons for choosing a Brumby is that they are one of the hardiest horses anywhere. They survive here everywhere from the desert to the Alpine mountains. And they are very good at finding water. :) During the drought, the mean wild Brumby population didn’t decrease at all. Water is plentiful near the Aus Alps, even in drought. Luckily here, we have several very good underground water systems, and they are not that hard to find. Ask any Aborigine (or mining company, who curse that fact often)! :lol:

I can get myself one of our vintage outback meat safe’s (a clever device made in the 19c to keep meat (and veggies) fresh and safe from predators). Had a canvas and straw outer lining that was kept wet and kept the contents quite cool in a breeze. The stronger the breeze, the better the cooling. :)

Anyway, I have been thinking about this for several years on and off, and have looked very carefully about how I’d survive for 20+ years. I have been taught to survive most of my life, and I am very good at it. :)

The thing with Camelot is, most of the World outside the USA (with some exceptions) know that it’s a fantasy. And I have no illusions whatsoever about what truly happened during the Crusades. :)

If I do decide one day to go bush, I will have one basic rule for anyone who chances across my path. They don’t bother me, and I won’t make them into food for the local wildlife, or bury them where they will never be found, except by some future archeologist perhaps. ;) :)

Make no mistake. I have absolutely no illusions. And I will survive.

35 Badtux { 11.12.12 at 9:37 pm }

Kryten, the issue with boiling water is fuel. I don’t know about your outback, but ours has scarce fuel, and it’s better preserved for preparing food and for preparing drinking water, not for any other use. A coffee can “hobo stove” will do that just fine with a limited fuel supply of twigs from the shrubs and small trees that are the majority of our outback flora, but you aren’t going to warm any large amounts of water with that.

Having lived without luxuries such as indoors climate control and warm showers for some portion of my life I certainly know I can survive without them. The thing is, I don’t *want* to. I can happily stand under a shower of warm water for half an hour, luxuriating in the luxury. Which I do understand is a luxury rather than something to take for granted — nobody in my family experienced such a luxury until 1958, when electricity (and thus running water) reached the hill country I came from. Still, while I might head out into the outback from time to time to re-acquaint myself with the reasons why I prefer civilization, it’s more about grounding myself and less about enjoying it. Been there, done that, prefer the hot shower at the end of it thank you very much :).

36 Bryan { 11.12.12 at 10:12 pm }

You have better solar potential than most of the US outback, making solar cooking much more reliable.

You have to choose the version of ‘outback’ carefully in the US, and climate change makes the choice tricky.

A wild variety of horse is obviously the best choice if you want a mount, because they know how to live off the land, as opposed to a ranch bred saddle horse. We have a ‘cracker’ horse in Florida that is well suited to our environment, having adapted in the several centuries since the Spanish introduced them to the area. [a 'cracker' is actually a Florida cowboy, so called because they used short whips to control cattle - cracking them to get the attention of the steers.] They are no good in a semi-arid environment, being heavy water users, but they don’t need to be fed grain.

I don’t doubt your ability to survive, nor my own. You have the experience and training to choose wisely what you need for your environment. You also have more choice of the location than is possible in the US any more because of population size.

It is a comfort knowing that if it is necessary, I can do it because I already have.

37 Badtux { 11.13.12 at 1:56 am }

It occurs to me that some of us could be protagonists in a Jack London novel. There is the half-wolf dog that grew up feral and grew to love civilization (White Fang), then there is the civilized dog that learned how to be feral and loved it (Call of the Wild). Hmm…

38 Kryten42 { 11.13.12 at 5:55 am }

Ahhh.. I understand you more clearly now badtux. Apologies for misunderstanding. Chalk it up to my current stress/anxiety levels. :)

Well, as you’ve seen in the news in recent years with bush fires destroying hundreds of thousands of acres within a week, thanks to the *moronic* green’s (as opposed the the sane and sensible ones), fuel isn’t an issue. ;) as I discovered when on bivouac in the Scouts, and during my advanced SERE training, there is a plentiful supply of fuel, even in the desert. And water also, if you know how to read the signs. Big hint, if there are dead fauna near a watering hole, or other water source, the water is bad. ;) :D Birds are especially a good indicator here because they can tolerate a higher dose of arsenic than man can, so if there is enough to kill birds… it’s not gonna do humans any good (Oh, tip #2. Neither will the flesh of the bird or animal!) :lol:

There is a lot of flora and fauna here that will kill a man, and not just when it’s alive! But, I learned from my Aboriginal instructor all about that. They are past masters at living off the land here in Aus for thousands of years. The thing here is, for all the *bad* out there, there truly is an abundance of *good* also. The problem is. most people can’t tell the difference. I can. :)

But, I am not talking about going back to the stone age. As well as being a (true) survivalist, I am a very good engineer and general *Jack of all trades*. I have some good ideas… I can get power here from a variety of sources and means. For example, one way is to utilize the mountain stream/waterfall to generate power. I’m not looking to provide power for an entire city, just me. :) also, there are many small deposits of coal or shale, many small reservoirs of gas, etc. Too small for any mining/energy company to bother with. But more than enough for me. There are Iron, tin, copper, etc, etc. deposits also. And during my time working for the Gov, I made copies of the *real* geologic survey charts and data (real as opposed to the *watered down* versions available publicly). ;) I have been thinking of the possibility for a long time. The necessity for survival. The signs have been there for a long time, and I saw them as part of my job. As a successful project manager with several Queen & Industry awards, I tend not to leave things to chance, or take anything for granted. Of course, problems will arise, but look where I am now! The problems *civilization* are now causing me are increasing daily. The kinds of problems I would meet *out there* are nothing compared to what I have to deal with now. :)

And I do understand you badtux about not wanting to live without the things you have become accustomed to. :) I suppose for me, those Mod Con’s have actually become part of the problem, part of the anchor dragging me down. In the early 90′s, after my BMT when I discovered that the drugs I was being given were slowly killing me. I escaped for more than a year to Sth Italy. The only mod con’s there were fan’s, refrigerators, and phone’s (and the occasional TV and radio’s). That virtually pure, natural environment saved my life. My biggest mistake was leaving, but I don’t regret it. My mother was ill, and I had to return. She passed away about 5 years later. I considered returning to Calabria, but friends convinced me to start a Security company. Another mistake. :) I have made far too many judgment errors the past decade or so. Almost all because I thought more about the needs of others, than myself. Time to change that. I am dying, and that is a fact (well, we all are of course! LOL I’m simply accelerating the process currently). ;) Death itself bothers me not one iota. I met Death face-to-face on several occasions since I was born (it’s one of the reasons I so love Diskworld Bryan. Except I can assure you he doesn’t ride a horse called Binky (or any horse for that matter), or carry a scythe! ) But I like the *idea* of that ‘Death’! :lol: Don’t ask me why, but I truly have faced it many times, and I am still here. (one theory I have is that it proves there is a God, and he doesn’t want me at all!) :lol:

Ahem. So, basically… I’d like to be on my own for awhile, perhaps a long while. But that doesn’t mean that I will go back to the stone age. :) For example, i used to belong to the Society of Model Engineers. We built many Steam driven devices, from engines to lathe & drill press, and other steam powered tools, and I even designed a Stirling Engine. :) And I know where some good hot springs and other steam vents are, just as an example. It’s a starting point. Who knows, If I live long enough… I may go all the way to a nuclear reactor! :lol: (I know where the Uranium is, and I know how to use it. But, that may be a little grandiose for my needs.) ;) :lol:

Heh… No,I wouldn’t have a problem. And who knows, If I come across any like minded individuals, who I believe I can trust (and I can spot con or a selfish SOB a mile away)… *shrug* Who knows? Anything *IS* possible! (Though, not necessarily probable!) ;)

It is a comfort knowing that if it is necessary, I can do it because I already have.

Yes, it is indeed.

39 Badtux { 11.13.12 at 11:43 am }

One problem here in the US is sheer population density. Even the most remote and isolated desert area in the US, Saline Valley (part of Death Valley National Park), has an enormous amount of water as well as geothermal hot springs… but the hot springs are enormously popular and there’s usually dozens of people surrounding them, while the other water sources are regularly patrolled as part of the War On (Some) Drugs for fear they could be used for a “grow” operation. The patrols are perfunctory and easily avoided but you aren’t going to be building any infrastructure there, they would spot it and destroy it.

I personally would have an easier time living off the land in Louisiana. Many of my relatives still largely do. Water and fuel are not issues, but population density is an issue there too. Everything is owned by somebody. You can squat, but not with infrastructure — too many people, some of whom aren’t nice people (see the movie “Southern Comfort” :lol:) and will personally take up the task of removing you and your infrastructure from their land with extreme prejudice (hint: those signs that say “No Trespassing / Survivors will be prosecuted” aren’t kidding). Meaning you have to be somewhat furtive / covert. Not the way I like to be.

So while I am more than adequately prepared for disruptions of services caused by natural disasters, I’ll leave the full-time bush living here in the U.S. to those who have, well, issues. And with that I’m out of here for the next couple of weeks :).

40 Kryten42 { 11.14.12 at 3:39 am }

Enjoy your getaway m8! :D I envy you. ;)

Yes, as I said above, I am very lucky here. Huge country, small population. And an abundance of natural resources. Aus has the broadest range of mineral and other natural resource wealth in the world, and some of it is easily accessible. I was talking to my councilor about it today. :)

I was feeling good, then I got home and had a letter from the Hospital waiting. It was a reply to a referral request my GP made over a month ago to an Orthopedic specialist review for my bad knee. The letter started that I had been placed on the waiting list, and that it could take up to 18 Months!!! WTF?? I can’t bloody wait 18 mths, I can’t wait another 3 months, to get my knee looked at! Jeez… and you say our health care system is better than yours??? Oh, really?!

I think I’m gonna need more than antidepressants! I am very annoyed!

41 Bryan { 11.14.12 at 11:54 am }

It is sad to note that in the US surveillance state wanting to be alone is considered suspicious activity, so it is monitored. It is very expensive in the US to be truly on your own.

The difference between the US and Australian system is that you know you will receive the care at some point. Millions of Americans know they can’t afford to seek any medical help. I have a neighbor who needs some surgery but it hasn’t been done for two years because they want an extremely high copayment up front before they will schedule it. He is saving to have it done, and hopes that he will still have insurance when he gets the copayment together. He has already borrowed all he can afford to pay for the diagnosis of his problem, so he didn’t have the money to pay for the cure. That’s why the US system sucks, even if you have some kind of medical insurance.

42 Kryten42 { 11.15.12 at 4:50 am }

I understand what you say about the differences, but at the end of the day, I am still not getting the help I need now. Whether it’s because it’s too expensive, or because of long waiting lists, the result is the same. There is little point to *free* health care, if you have to wait so long to get it, the problem get’s so bad it can’t be fixed.

Yeah, the US has nothing on the old Soviet Police State. I do love irony!

I was talking to an old cattle farmer who comes into the pub where I live regularly, and it turns out, he used to catch wild Brumby’s and break them. :) I told him what I was thinking, and he said it was good if I could really catch and break a Brumby. So I described the process I learned, and he gave me some tip’s I’d noy heard before (for eg. He said the fastest and easiest way to break a Brumby, was to tie it too a tree with nobody around but you, and stay with it and talk to it often. After a day it will get used to you and you just feed, water, talk calmly and pat it, and after 3 days it will be docile enough to walk, and within another day, you can get it used to a harness, and then a saddle. :) He also said that a Brumby would be the best Horse for what I’ll need. So… there ya go! :D

I saw the shrink today. She agreed that it had been a good idea to hold off taking the antidepressants because she felt the GP was starting me on too high a dose, and she’s not convinced I need them. :) So, I did a DAT test, which apparently will give her an indicator of my levels of depression, anxiety, stress, etc. So, I guess I will see. She also said that waiting 18 months to have someone look at my knee to even find out what the problem is exactly is just ridiculous. She’s going to see if she can make them see sense. She said that if they knew what the problem was, and knew it could wait, that would be different, which was my argument exactly!

So, appearances are that I am finally getting the help I need. I am now waiting for the other shoe to drop, ’cause I know it will. Welcome to my World! *shrug*

Oh! She is interested to read my comments here (I told her we’d been chatting about my getting away and healthcare etc.) I told her she may learn more than is healthy for her, or she’d want to know about me! :lol: She already has learned some of it as she tried to get my military medical records and psych eval’s, and was told that she didn’t meet the security requirements and, *no way in hell*! I said she could either spend the next 6 mth’s getting the required clearance, or wait until 2017. :) She said she was impressed (and I could tell she meant it), and I said “Don’t be. It’s all bullshit!”

43 Bryan { 11.15.12 at 12:09 pm }

Oh, I understand your problem and agree, if they don’t have a specialist really examine the problem, how do they know how long you can wait – that’s basic triage. At an accident scene you ship the obvious injuries off first, but the more dangerous problems, like head injuries, may not be obvious, so you watch people. Most of the time I spent taking a motor vehicle accident report was watching for hidden injuries and shock. That’s why you have to sign a release if you refuse medical treatment down here – the cops and EMTs don’t want to be sued for missing an injury.

Oh, yeah, ‘official government records’ :twisted: My records are filed under the Fiction section of the library. My Dad recognized bogus orders when he saw them with comments like “that’s where they want people to think you are going”.

It was even more fun after the wide-spread introduction of computers and I received the first print-out indicating I had been awarded all kinds of campaign medals from World War II. As I pointed out to the people in personnel my birth date rather negated any possibility of my having taken an active role in that war.

The horse advice is a lot like the methods used by real interrogators to get real information from people, and certainly a lot safer for all involved. It makes sense. That’s how you get to be an old wrangler rather then a disabled middle-aged wrangler.

44 Kryten42 { 11.15.12 at 7:57 pm }

Yeah, it’s almost as bad here with accident scenes. If a Doc comes across an accident, he’s not allowed to do a thing except call for paramedics! (But once the paramedics are on scene, they can request his help if required). Crazy.

LOL Yeah… Official Records! ;) Funny isn’t it? Everyone who finds out the kinds of things we did (or think they know), are really impressed. But the ones who did it, aren’t at all and just wish everyone would STFU about it! :lol: Nobody I know who was actually in the *biz* ever used it to try to pick up women, so when I used to hear someone try it at a bar or whatever, I knew they were bogus as hell (or, if they were in the biz, they were a backroom paper pusher)! ;) :D This is the only place I’ve ever really *talked* some about my past, and that’s only because of you. Otherwise, I really wouldn’t bother. :)

My mom once got a letter with a posthumous award for me for service in Vietnam during a campaign in ’69. She phoned my (as I was living in Sydney at that time) and I could tell she was amused (I get my sense of humor from her). We chatted a bit, and then she said “Oh, by the way, congratulations.” I said, “What for?” and she said “You won another medal.” I said “Aha. sure Mom.” and she said “No, you did. You know, for when you saved those men in Vietnam in ’69 and were KIA” and she laughed, and I said “Very funny mom. *sigh* OK, Give me the details and Ref number. I’ll sort it out.” And she said “Mo. you should keep it. Might come in handy. You always did look too young. You might be able to impress a nice woman and finally get married!” To which I relied: “Yeah, thanks a bunch Mom! You’re gonna be having fun with this for years aren’t you? I really hate those morons in Canberra!” And we both laughed! :lol: I miss her… :) FYI, I was 11 in ’69. ;) One of the (minor) reasons I was asked to work for DIO was that my real name is quite common here (I even have several cousins and uncle’s with the same birth name, and one cousin I know of that even has the same DOB). It helps us get lost in the *noise* if things go FUBAR. :D

Yeah, I like this old rancher! I’ve had a couple chat’s with him now, and he is a wealth of real knowledge and funny stories! :D He’s coming in more often now, and I buy him a beer and we chat. It’s really good. :) And very useful… Timing of things is funny sometimes… ;) Right? :D

45 Bryan { 11.16.12 at 12:08 am }

I was recalling the best moments I had doing the job, and they would make absolutely no sense to anyone who didn’t do the same kind of work. When you deal with complex systems, finally being able to predict when and why a specific event will occur and what that event will trigger is a big deal, but only if you know that the system exists and being to predict how it works is vital.

If you have never done the job how in hell would you really be able to understand what it takes to do it right, and if everyone does their job correctly, no one knows it happened. Medals usually indicate that there was a failure along the way and people had to improvise, although some indicate that people already knew before it was launched that the mission was more than slightly insane, but there would be a huge payoff if it could be pulled off. You don’t do crazy stuff for glory, you do it because it is the only way to do something you believe is necessary. There’s no point in talking about it, because the people who would understand already know.

As for picking up women – the job was the biggest impediment I can think of to a real relationship. If you can’t talk about what you do for a living, can’t tell someone when you will be gone or where you’re going, relationships tend to dissolve. As one of my first sergeant’s said the single guys should do the marriage counseling because they are the only people in the squadron who haven’t been divorced.

It is always a good thing to find a mentor for any new interest. It’s a lot easier to learn from someone else’s mistakes, than making them on you own.

46 Kryten42 { 11.18.12 at 10:42 pm }

Yeah… There were times when I was very glad to do my job, and other times that I had to question the mission (and 2 occasions when I actually did question my orders. You can imagine how that went). There are only 3 people alive that know in any detail what I did, one that was with me in the job, and two who have known me a very long time, that I trust with my life, and who were also in very high security jobs. The guy I was in the biz with and I have never really talked about it. There was no point, what was done was done, and nothing could change any of it. We knew that the worst thing we could do was to begin second guessing ourselves after the events. We knew of people who had gone crazy that way. We haven’t seen each other for ages. I think both of us remind the other of things we don’t really want to be reminded of. :) Funny thing is, I know I can call him up and ask for help, and I’d get it with no questions asked. And I’d do the same. :)

I was told that we got the insane jobs because they had spent millions on our training and it was what we got paid for. *shrug* :lol: I have some citations and awards, but I’ll never see them, neither will anyone else. My Mother received a medal and citation that my Grandfather won in WW1, 85 years after the event, and 7 years after his death. He was a sniper in the Welsh Fusiliers. He talked about some of it with me, and I learned a lot about how it all works from him. :)

Funny thing for me about picking up women, the job made it both easier and difficult! :D It was easier because I had a ton of confidence, was fit as a racehorse, could talk to anyone about anything, and was an expert in body language and observation. We took my best friend to a nightclub for his birthday, and we were having a drink when I spotted two very attractive women walk in. I watched them and when they looked our way, smiled and raised my glass. They looked at each other, one shrugged and they came over. My friend asked what was happening, and I said “we are going to get lucky.” He asked how I knew, and I said “The one on the right is married and pissed off, and is looking for a one nigher, probably as payback. look at her ring finger, it’s white where she had her wedding ring. It hasn’t been off for long. And she’s walking as if she has a lot of anger and aggression in her. The other is her best friend along for support and to help out.” I talked to the pissed off woman, discovered that I was pretty right in my assessment, and gave her lot’s of sympathy and offered to help her husband *see the light* and behave. Anyway, we eventually went back to my place and she went home with a big smile. I helped her gain some confidence and suggested how to confront her Husband and sort it out. :) (and that’s all I’m gonna say about that!) I have to admit that afterwards, I did feel like a bit of a rat, even though we both got what we wanted and felt good. Still, I decided not to do that again, next time might not work out as well. It’s not that hard to spot a married woman, or a single available one. :)

I found that when you use the line “I could tell you what I do, but then I’d have to kill you.” doesn’t really work. They usually think you are full of crap and leave. (I’ve never personally tried it, but I heard about others that did). :)

The old fella is still working his ass off even though he’s in his 80′s! Typical of the old farmers here. :) They work until they drop. They are the toughest people I know. :)

47 Bryan { 11.19.12 at 11:52 pm }

Farming is a life, not a job. Among the farmers in my extended family, they stayed healthy when they were working the farm, but those that retired for one reason or another seemed to fall apart physically. Like old horses, if they go down, you’ll never get them up again. It probably has a lot to do with diet – you can’t eat like a farmer unless you work like a farmer to burn off all the calories in an American farm diet.

I only refused one mission, but I had too much ‘history’ with that mission, and I wasn’t going to re-live it again.

you learn a lot things when you train as an interrogator that can make you very successful in social situations, but you also learn more than you really want to know if you are attempting to build a relationship. It feels like cheating in some ways, and you can’t tell if they are reacting to you as a person, or as a trained professional. It’s not something you can turn off.

It would have been more accurate to say “I could tell you what I do, but then I would go to prison.” The military provided us with an elaborate explanation of the ‘correct’ response to that question, but it was so obviously absurd that I knew I couldn’t repeat it without laughing.

When I was in the military it was major hassle if you got serious, because they wanted to do a background check on your intended, and that is a major problem. With so much time overseas, the military wasn’t at all happy with foreign nationals, and in the US who knows what your girlfriend or her family have gotten up to. The access to information is nice, but there is a price.