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Posts from — October 2016

A Public Service

Via skippy the bush kangaroo, the formula to determine how many ‘fun-sized’ candy bars or pieces of candy corn someone can eat in a binge before having a 50-50 chance of dying from hyperglycemia.

Take your weight in pounds and multiply it by 13.5. Divide the result by 9.3 to determine the number of ‘fun-sized’ candy bars, or by 1.5 to find the number of candy corn pieces.

For example, 156 pound individual multiplied by 13.5 equals 2106. Divide by 9.3 yields 226.45 ‘fun-sized’ Snickers or by 1.5 to yield 1404 pieces of candy corn.

October 31, 2016   4 Comments

All Hallowed Evening

Bonus Cat Blogging

Jack o' lanternWhether you celebrate Celtic New Year’s Eve [Samhain], the evening before All Saints Day [Halloween], or the posting of Martin Luther’s Ninety-Five Theses in 1517 [Reformation Day], have a happy one.

Wikipedia does its normally thorough job of covering all of the bases on the holidays that share October 31st.

These are my remembrances of a traditional American Halloween.

Locally we are having preemptive lawn drowning to prevent people at the ‘Autumn Festival’ from parking on our grass.

October 31, 2016   10 Comments

The Latest On Hillary’s E-Mail

Believe it or not, Hillary sent e-mails to her assistant, and her assistant still had some on her phone/Blackberry when the FBI confiscated it for the investigation into the assistant’s soon to be ex-husband.

The FBI will now know if Hillary asked her assistant to pick up her laundry….

If you are interested and can use your own e-mail program read Badtux’s summation of the Politico summation of the entire mess to find out how little there is to investigate.

The bottom line is that if you depended on e-mail for anything you had to use a private account rather than the crappy e-mail server at the State Department.

October 28, 2016   19 Comments

The Florida Amendment 1 Con

This is the ballot text for Amendment 1:

This amendment establishes a right under Florida’s constitution for consumers to own or lease solar equipment installed on their property to generate electricity for their own use. State and local governments shall retain their abilities to protect consumer rights and public health, safety and welfare, and to ensure that consumers who do not choose to install solar are not required to subsidize the costs of backup power and electric grid access to those who do.

Look carefully at the second of the two sentences: “State and local governments shall retain their abilities to protect consumer rights and public health, safety and welfare, and to ensure that consumers who do not choose to install solar are not required to subsidize the costs of backup power and electric grid access to those who do.”

What does the right to install solar panels have to do with: “State and local governments shall retain their abilities to protect consumer rights and public health, safety and welfare,” ? This isn’t the medical cannabis amendment, or the right to own surface-to-surface missiles amendment.

Finally we get to the real purpose: “ensure that consumers who do not choose to install solar are not required to subsidize the costs of backup power and electric grid access to those who do”.

To discourage people from using solar panels the utilities want to be able to charge those people huge amounts to be attached to the grid or simply refuse to connect them, to protect the people who don’t have solar panels from providing any kind of subsidy.

October 27, 2016   4 Comments

Users Win One

The FCC votes for users over ISPs:

“It’s the consumers’ information. How it is used should be the consumers’ choice.” So said FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler as the commission adopted rules requiring Internet service providers such as Comcast and Verizon to get customers’ permission before selling the data they collect to marketers.

The vote was 3-2 along party lines.

Note that this ruling applies to Internet Service Providers, not Google, Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, etc.

October 27, 2016   Comments Off on Users Win One

Just Reboot It

The first thing that you are going to be told to do if you call a support line is to reboot your system. The reason is that resetting everything clears up most technical issues.

Let’s say you have a major client, we’ll call it the government of Australia, and you have a multimillion dollar project for that client, something like the census, and it slams to a halt after launch and is down for two days, what should you do?

How about: rebooting the system!

Of course, that assumes that you have tested the system and know that it will work.

October 26, 2016   12 Comments

Florida Ballot Measures

There are four measures on the Florida ballot this year: Amendments 1, 2, 3, & 5. Amendment 4 was passed on the primary election ballot. This is Florida, it doesn’t have to be logical.

You can read the official explanation of the amendments, which leaves out the intents of the backers.

Amendments 3 & 5 are feel good referrals by the Republican legislature to give property tax breaks to first responders who were permanently disabled while on duty, and to senior citizens. The legislature does this because they get credit for a tax cut that doesn’t affect them, since property taxes are the principle support for local governments, not the state government. The legislature doesn’t get the blame when local services are cut, and gets the credit for lowering taxes – all gain and no pain.

Amendment 1 is evil- It is written to sound like support for solar energy but it is sponsored by the utilities to block any real change to their business model.

I am only voting yes for Amendment 2 – in spite of the fact that it is titled medical marijuana. The actual citizens who are pushing the amendment have issued a statement of their intent so there is no confusion as to what they want the amendment to accomplish.

When it was grown by the founding fathers, cannabis was used to make ropes, among other products, and was often mandated as a vital crop. ‘Marijuana’ is actually an anti-Mexican slang term for the plant, but it won’t go away.

October 25, 2016   2 Comments

Real Life

It has been a PITA lately. Yesterday the winds were gusty as a cold front moved through and were blowing tree limbs across the top of the step-down transformer that supplies electricity to my house. This resulted in electricity being lost in a random fashion which is not good for equipment.

The front moved through and there were lows below 50°F [single digits Celsius] this morning and the next couple of days. The cats won’t like it, and I sure as hell won’t like it. I just got a reasonable utility bill with minimal air conditioner costs, and now I’ going to have heating costs.

To prove there was no depth to which Drumpf wouldn’t sink, he went to the Gettysburg Battlefield to complain about people being mean to him. His kvetching belongs in an analyst’s office or a comedy club stage, not at a military cemetery.

October 22, 2016   12 Comments

Preview of Coming Attractions?

If you are contemplating a literary effort surrounding a possible Drumpf Presidency, you could do worse that study Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte and his actions.

Apparently he has never talked to any Filipinos who have worked for Chinese employers or he wouldn’t be so anxious to cozy up to them. I understand that he is upset because the US government has criticized him for endorsing gunning down people who might be involved in the drug trade without even bothering to arrest them, much less giving them a trail. The leaders of China and Russia both remain silent about his internal purge, and expect him to remain silent about theirs. His feelings were hurt, so Obama is a ‘Nazi’ and he doesn’t want to ‘play with the US, he’s going to play with China and Russia.’

Once the US pulls out all of its resources. the Philippine government will play hell getting them to come back. It costs money to withdraw, and you aren’t going to have Congress willing to spend money to redeploy anytime soon.

There’s a lot of Duterte in Drumpf.

October 20, 2016   Comments Off on Preview of Coming Attractions?

Stuff

Nicole went post-tropical at 4AM CDT, but Invest 99L will probably be Otto before the end of the week.

Pierre Trudeau of Canada has 300 unfilled appointments in the government. The opposition wants to know why?

Malcolm Turnbull of Australia got carried away and appointed three ministers to handle ‘defence’. They are supposed to handle different aspects of defense, but no one has produced an actual job description.

Meanwhile, John McCain has said if another Democrat is elected President, a Republican-controlled Senate won’t act on her nominations. Republicans don’t know how to govern, only how to obstruct.

Someone needs to tell Drumpf that It has been done. Because he won’t admit that he can possibly be a loser, he is spreading a conspiracy theory that if he loses it was because the election was rigged. In Weimar Germany it was called the Dolchstoßlegende, the “stabbed-in-the-back myth”. The National Socialist party claimed that the German Army would have won World War I if it hadn’t been ‘stabbed in the back’ by the communists, pacifists, et alia.

Sorry, but losing nearly a billion dollars in a single year [1995] is fairly substantial proof of being a LOSER, not an example of being a competent business man. The problem is that he spent so much time in the spotlight and people found out what a creep and loser he really was.

October 18, 2016   19 Comments

Tropical Storm Nicole – Day 14

Tropical Storm NicolePosition: 44.8N 41.0W [10PM CDT 0300 UTC].
Movement: Northeast [035°] near 25 mph [41 kph].
Maximum sustained winds: 70 mph [110 kph].
Wind Gusts: 85 mph [135 kph].
Tropical Storm Wind Radius: 345 miles [555 km].
Minimum central pressure: 968 mb ↑.

Currently about 595 miles [ 960 km] East of Cape Race, Newfoundland.

The colder North Atlantic water is finally weakening the system which is forecast to lose its tropical characteristics tomorrow.

Here’s the link for NOAA’s latest satellite images.

[For the latest information click on the storm symbol, or go to the CATEGORIES drop-down box below the CALENDAR and select “Hurricanes” for all of the posts related to storms on this site.]

October 17, 2016   Comments Off on Tropical Storm Nicole – Day 14

Hurricane Nicole – Day 13

Hurricane NicolePosition: 40.5N 45.5W [10PM CDT 0300 UTC].
Movement: Northeast [040°] near 9 mph [15 kph].
Maximum sustained winds: 80 mph [130 kph].
Wind Gusts: 105 mph [170 kph].
Tropical Storm Wind Radius: 415 miles [665 km].
Hurricane Wind Radius: 90 miles [150 km].
Minimum central pressure: 960 mb.

Currently about 570 miles [ 920 km] Southeast of Cape Race, Newfoundland.

Here’s the link for NOAA’s latest satellite images.

[For the latest information click on the storm symbol, or go to the CATEGORIES drop-down box below the CALENDAR and select “Hurricanes” for all of the posts related to storms on this site.]

October 16, 2016   Comments Off on Hurricane Nicole – Day 13

Hurricane Nicole – Day 12

Hurricane NicolePosition: 39.4N 48.3W [10PM CDT 0300 UTC].
Movement: East [080°] near 10 mph [17 kph].
Maximum sustained winds: 85 mph [140 kph].
Wind Gusts: 105 mph [170 kph].
Tropical Storm Wind Radius: 485 miles [780 km].
Hurricane Wind Radius: 90 miles [150 km].
Minimum central pressure: 958 mb ↓.

Currently about 560 miles [ 900 km] South-Southeast of Cape Race, Newfoundland.

Nicole is back to hurricane strength at 10AM CDT in another of her weird manic-depressive cycles.

Here’s the link for NOAA’s latest satellite images.

[For the latest information click on the storm symbol, or go to the CATEGORIES drop-down box below the CALENDAR and select “Hurricanes” for all of the posts related to storms on this site.]

October 15, 2016   Comments Off on Hurricane Nicole – Day 12

Busy, Busy, Busy

I have trying to get my Amazon Music app to work on Windows machines for about 3 days. It definitely will not work the way I have used it for years after an update on Wednesday that added another rental service. If we had a decent radio station down here I wouldn’t bother, but as classical or classical rock music are not to be found on the local airwaves and it is part of the Prime service I already pay for I will get this miserable beast to stop disappearing every time I restart either of my Windows boxes.

Spent the afternoon with my 6-month doctor’s appointment and helping a friend put up a tent designed for the bed of his pick-up. With instructions written by a 6-grade English class in China and poles that are different colors than those in the instructions, the simple 20 minute job was called after two hours, when he decided to take a tarp to the blue grass festival rather than attempting to put up this tent on arrival. He wanted to spend time listening to music not contemplating the fact that there were green poles instead of orange and there were two pairs of blue poles instead of one.

October 14, 2016   4 Comments