Monday, 24 April 2017

09:18 – It was 45F (7C) when I took Colin out at 0715 this morning, gray and drizzling. We’ve had 4.5 inches (11.4 cm) of rain in the last 24 hours, and more than 6 inches (15+ cm) over the last three days. That’s basically a month’s worth of rain in three days. And it’s still drizzling.

The more I read about Costco’s and Amazon’s politics, the more I think we should be patronizing Walmart and Sam’s Club instead. The former two are just what one would expect from companies headquartered in coastal Washington state, while the latter two are what one would expect from companies headquartered in fly-over states. The former are major supporters of the Democrats, Obama, and Clinton, while the latter are major supporters of the Republicans and Trump.

There’s no real difference to us in terms of convenience to patronize Costco versus Sam’s Club. The nearest outlets of both sit a block apart in Winston-Salem. Sam’s Club actually carries a wider range of items, although both carry items that the other doesn’t. Neither has free shipping on many items, although Costco has more items available that way than does Sam’s. Sam’s free shipping is limited to a few classes of home electronics and (bizarrely) motor oil. But Sam’s also has free shipping on most Augason Farms products, which is a point in its favor.

I think I’ll talk to Barbara about re-joining Sam’s Club and making most of our warehouse store purchases there. I’ll find out what she gets at Costco that Sam’s doesn’t carry, although I think that’s pretty much limited to fresh meats. Sam’s carries meats, of course, but I’m not sure about their quality versus Costco.

Another email overnight from Sarah. They close on their new house in Deplorable-land a week from today, and have been packing like mad. She says it’s amazing how much stuff there is in their apartment. They’d initially intended to hire a moving company to transport their stuff, but when they got quotes they decided just to rent a truck and move it themselves. Better them than me, but at least they’re young and fit. They’ve arranged with friends to have a moving party and help them get the truck loaded up once they’ve officially closed. I’d offer to go over to their new place and help them unload, but it looks like it’d be a five or six hour round trip on back roads.

* * * * *

75 thoughts on “Monday, 24 April 2017”

  1. 37 here with probable showers/drizzle later today. Bright overcast with a slight breeze.

    We have the Wall-Mutt “Superstore” just up the road, Route 7 North, on the Swanton line, or it may actually be in Swanton, I forget. About five miles from here. And a Sam’s Club on the other side of the lake in Plattsburgh, NY. I’ll check it out; there are some other places over there I wanna check out anyway.

    I seem to be getting the vast bulk of our food storage stuff at the local supermarkets and have spent very little time in Costco despite my “executive” membership card; it’s about 25 miles down the road in Colchester. Amazon is problematic; we’ve gotten a lotta stuff from there over the years but I’ve noticed the politics lately along with other practices that I’m getting tired of. Half the time the stuff I want is sold by other suppliers anyway, and of books and CDs and DVDs I have a legion already. I’ll see how it goes over the next several months.

    Well, we’ve started off the morning lickety-split here; a call at 08:00 from our group’s early ‘Nam paratrooper thanking me for stopping by the funeral home the other day, and then the town’s highway department or buildings-and-grounds guys started up with a backhoe, mower, loud chit-chat, etc. just across the street.

    Off shortly to do minor local errands and recon.

  2. Moving house… over my dead body.

    Moving party: supply one cold beer to wake everybody up. Thereafter, chilled soft drinks and water while the work is going on, then as much beer and pizza as anybody still has energy to drink/eat once the work has been done. Too much beer and pizza to early and nothing gets done.

  3. I like the way Mr. Denis thinks; “Well, I woke up this morning and I grabbed myself a beeeeeer…” Hats off to the late Mr. Jim Morrison. That’s how our roofing job days started back in ancient times, on those tall-ass, steep-roofed, phony garrison colonials in the tony western ‘burbs of Boston. With doobie breaks mid-morning, more beer and doobies at lunchtime, doobie break mid-afternoon, and then PART-AYYYYY every night. If I did one-tenth of that now I’d be dead in a couple of days. Hauling 80-pound bundles of shingles up three stories on swaying aluminum ladders in 95-degree heat, well over 100 on the roof. “Sweat the sin out,” our foreman used to yell at us. Hell, I was too busy and too wrung out to worry about PTSD symptoms or hearing loss.

    And I see that the froggies have chosen sharia and becoming dhimmis. Avoir, mes amis.

    Sir Roland and Charles Martel must be spinning in their graves.

  4. And I see that the froggies have chosen sharia and becoming dhimmis. Avoir, mes amis.

    I think you meant:
    Au revoir mes amis.

    Now, if you will excuse me, I just realized that since I just corrected someone’s French, I should go find something better to do.

  5. We switched from SAMS to COSTO about a year ago when we heard the racist remarks made by SAMS new CEO. We don’t want to be supporting shuch offensive nonsense.

  6. There is no doubt that moving house is a giant PITA. When Dad was a corporate drone and I was a boy, we moved to a new state every couple of years. I got used to being the “new kid” again and again. The military brats were my only contemporaries who moved at a faster pace. As an adult, I’m in my fourth apartment in this city over three decades, a somewhat happier pace but still cringeworthy in the moment.

    The only virtue, once the logistic nightmare is over, for me is an attitudinal tolerance for local cultural and climate differences and a (for me) somewhat reluctant ability to meet new people without prejudice. Many, even most, people seem to have an almost medievally provincial attitude about their locale.

  7. We switched from SAMS to COSTO about a year ago when we heard the racist remarks made by SAMS new CEO. We don’t want to be supporting shuch offensive nonsense.

    MrsAtoz is friends with a former COSTCO VP. Believe me, there was plenty negativity about what we now call “deplorables” from the very liberal COSTCO. Hillbilly trash was heard several times. We have a membership in both. We work with hillbilly families all the time in various travels. They aren’t trash.

  8. I read New Orleans is tearing down Confederate statuary.

    Next up: All those war crimes memorials in DC. Let’s start with The Tomb of the Unknown War Criminal.

    Aloha Snackbar!!!

  9. When the new female and very liberal SAMS CEO Rosalind Brewer admitted to discriminating against white males and said she preferred diversity (over competence) we left SAMS and never looked back.
    I lived in Arkansas for years and was astounded that SAMS would put such a Progressive in charge.

  10. It’s moot anyway. Barbara detests Sam’s Club and says she wants to continue using Costco and Amazon. Oh, well. I’ll still buy a lot of my volume from Walmart.

  11. “I think you meant:
    Au revoir mes amis.”

    Oui. Sometimes I miss my typos, plus there’s the Quebecois slang not only just 15 miles up the road but also in this border AO. Messes me up a lot. And they speak a still different dialect of it in northeast Nouveau Brunswick.

    “… the racist remarks made by SAMS new CEO.”

    I missed that story; what were they?

    “I got used to being the “new kid” again and again.”

    Ditto. Boy, did that suck. When I was a kid we lived in five different towns in Maffachufetts. Then as an adult, I lived in 24 or 25 places in almost as many towns in MA, NJ and VT, not counting mil-spec time. Crazy. And yeah, I’ve noticed that same attitude on the part of people who are born, grow up, get married, have kids and die in the same ‘hood, let alone the same town, for generations. A lotta ‘hoods in Woostah and Boston are like that.

    “We work with hillbilly families all the time in various travels. They aren’t trash.”

    As does Mrs. OFD; she loves them and they love her right back. She’s been invited to return to some of the places multiple times. And poor white folks in this country, along with Roman Catholics, are the last groups which are socially acceptable to discriminate against, apparently.

    “I read New Orleans is tearing down Confederate statuary.”

    Just like the old Soviet Union airbrushing photos and rewriting history books. Tell me what’s different, I’m all eyes and ears.

    General Lee’s dad fought with General Washington. This is a total fucking disgrace and a rank obscenity, yet another blot on what’s left of the Murkan soul.

  12. NONE of them are good choices politically because they are run by people. And the kind of people who typically rise to the levers of power are not nice or good people. There are exceptions. And I’d prefer that they were not actively working against me. But, ya gotta eat.

    You don’t gotta IKEA, so when they posted “no CHL” I stopped going and never looked back. They have too many snotty euro trash and burka-covered customers anyway, and their stuff is sized for malnourished euros and not corn- and beef-fed ‘murkins. [that should get some comments flowing….]

    Someone says to me “I don’t want your business” I’m usually happy to stay away. IKEA, Penzey’s Spices, Target, are all on my list. Any restaurant that posts no CHL I’m not gonna enter. I’ve moved Habitat for Humanity from my ‘won’t shop’ to my “take ’em for everything they’ve got” list.

    I’ve been reconsidering Costco all year. They keep getting rid of items I buy, and in many cases subbing their own inferior brand. The whole pissing match between AMEX and them was not in the interest of their customers either. I do save better than 10c a gallon on gas though, and I drive more than I used to so that adds up. I still think that the majority of their items are better quality that substitute items at Sams. Their packaging in certainly sturdier.

    n

  13. Shit, shit, shit…now I gotta start a list…

    …I already had Microslop on it…got real tired of reading the PC editorial copy in the Penzey’s catalog…never go to Target anyway…or IKEA for that matter (don’t have ’em up here)…and would absolutely refuse to enter any establishment that had anti-gun signs up-front, not that I’ve seen any of those up here, either. Incidentally, haven’t seen any OCW people, either. Common sense; why advertise yerself as a target to potential bad guys? Also getting tired of Little Steven’s occasional lefty diatribes and rewrites of history on his SiriusXM channel, probably to be expected from being in Springsteen’s band and then the stupid tee-vee crime series and kowtowing to not only Hollyweird but most other musicians and “artists.” Back to the outlaw country channel, I guess; the classical ones just play their own version of Top 40.

    So I guess it boils down to who is more convenient, economical, reliable and has decent products and local peeps working for them that they treat fairly.

  14. I primarily use Outlaw Country. Reminds me of Hillbilly Jim wrasslin’ on WWF decades ago.

  15. The more I read about Costco’s and Amazon’s politics, the more I think we should be patronizing Walmart and Sam’s Club instead. The former two are just what one would expect from companies headquartered in coastal Washington state, while the latter two are what one would expect from companies headquartered in fly-over states.

    We keep memberships at both, but I noticed that we are buying less at Costco lately. It isn’t about politics as much as the push for organics. This weekend’s surprise was that bulk dry beans were nowhere to be found in our local Costco.

    I’ve always viewed Costco’s politics as “ends justify means”. They bought a lot of influence in WA State over the last 7-8 years, but I believe that expenditure was driven by the desire to have their lobbyists in position to rewrite the WA liquor laws when deregulation passed.

    Of the two, I’d be more concerned about supporting Amazon’s political antics. Costco would have survived if, say, Kroger’s lobbyists rewrote the liquor laws, but I don’t see Amazon growing sufficiently to justify their current share price without getting the Fresh delivery fee covered by the Food Stamp program. Accomplishing that will require Bezos funding a *successful* non-Cankles Presidential campaign in 2020, both directly and indirectly through positive Post stories.

  16. As an economic data point, I’ll note that Disney is offering 0% “vacation financing” for some card holders at Disney Resorts.

    That smacks of desperation, or REALLY cheap money….

    n

  17. As an economic data point, I’ll note that Disney is offering 0% “vacation financing” for some card holders at Disney Resorts.

    That smacks of desperation, or REALLY cheap money….

    Who is really excited to see Avatar Land? That’s all The Mouse has in Orlando this Summer. Anaheim doesn’t even have that.

    Anyone with kids and the money to splurge on Disney is waiting for the construction walls to come down on Star Wars Land, both in FL and CA.

    We took our kids to Gatorland and Kennedy Space Center when we went to FL last month. Everyone had a pretty good time for a *lot* less money.

    (And, sorry Houston/Johnson Space Center, but Kennedy has you beat in terms of things to see and the quality of the exhibits.)

  18. “If a nuclear bomb is dropped on your city, here’s where you should run and hide”
    http://www.chron.com/technology/businessinsider/article/If-a-nuclear-bomb-is-dropped-on-your-city-here-s-11011580.php

    “President Trump has egged on a new arms race. Russia violated weapons treaties to upgrade its nuclear arsenal. North Korea is developing long-range missiles and practicing for nuclear war — and the US military is considering preemptive attacks on the isolated nation’s military facilities.”

    If you think that your city is going to be nuked, you should move away now. Or move into the subbasement of your building.

  19. Pretty good advice for those who spend a lot of time in or near large cities, although Barbara and I are extraordinarily unlikely to be anywhere near a nuke detonation.

  20. “Reminds me of Hillbilly Jim wrasslin’ on WWF decades ago.”

    Mrs. OFD went to high school with “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan in Glens Falls, NY, where his dad was chief of police. She said Jim was a real nice guy and a gentleman.

    Ordinarily, WRT proximity to nukular weapons targets, I’d say we’re good, but there’s the international airport just 30 miles south which hosts the Green Mountain Boys, a fighter-interceptor squadron running F16s currently but slated to get the new F35s next year. You can imagine the uproar from the communists and rich libtards. So I dunno if they’re a target or not.

    Stopped by the local Ace hw store to grab a few things and there was a red pickup parked near the front door with two tRump stickers on the back, one of them was GUN OWNERS FOR TRUMP and there were one or two burly white guys in there who could have been the owner. I know it bugged wife and Princess when driving around this AO last year during the campaign that there were a chit-ton of tRump signs but zero for the demented shitbag of toxic waste. Nearer Burlap more signs for Commissar Sanders and his lovely wife Jane, who bankrupted a college down there while she was running it. The Sanders dacha is on one of the Champlain Islands pretty near here as the osprey flies. He and Jane spent their lovely honeymoon…wait for it…………….in Moscow. Back then.

  21. Ordinarily, WRT proximity to nukular weapons targets, I’d say we’re good, but there’s the international airport just 30 miles south which hosts the Green Mountain Boys, a fighter-interceptor squadron running F16s currently but slated to get the new F35s next year. You can imagine the uproar from the communists and rich libtards. So I dunno if they’re a target or not.

    If the runway can accommodate a B-52, the airport is probably a target for the Russians. I don’t think the Chinese have as many delivery vehicles, and the Norks definitely not.

  22. Ima just gon write it off as a target any ol’ how. They gotta extend the runways for the F35s and the Russians may have it in their old targeting schemes but screw it. Not gonna worry ’bout dat one. If the SAC base at Plattsburgh across the lake was still active, though, I’d be very concerned. Wife used to watch B52s taking off and landing there as a kid. Now it’s just a strip mall and office park, although I oughta do a recon through there soon anyway and see what’s changed.

    My worries per usual are the financial house of cards and Grid vulnerability and local yokel criminal scumbags, mostly druggies. And drunks. And cretins getting popped by the staties for doing 110 up on the interstate in broad daylight, almost daily now.

  23. _Homeland_ by Cory Doctorow
    https://www.amazon.com/Homeland-Cory-Doctorow/dp/0765333708/

    Book number two of a two book dystopian near future series. I don’t have a clue if there will be a third book in the series and I don’t know if I will read it if so. I read the trade paperback which used nice paper and a good font for my old eyes.

    Things are going to heck in a hand basket in near future San Fransisco as the number of employed people is steadily dropping. Marcus has dropped out of college and is desperately looking for a job. And people are looking for Marcus. I could not tell when the book is set other than the near future (it was published in 2013).

    There is a huge backstory going in the book about the high cost of college education in the USA and some apparent usury going on in student loan fees. I have no idea about the student loan usury. And yes, college has gotten very expensive in the USA.

    There is a public domain version of the book at:
    http://craphound.com/homeland/download/

    My rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    Amazon rating: 4.4 out of 5 stars (126 reviews)

  24. extraordinarily unlikely to be anywhere near a nuke detonation

    I figure I am just the opposite. Living close to Oak Ridge TN, home to X10 (Oak Ridge National Laboratory), K25 (Former uranium enrichment site), and Y12 (bomb assembly and disassembly and other nasty stuff) I figure all those operations are prime targets. I live across the small hills from plants but am probably within the significant blast radius.

    Where I grew up in Rogue River Oregon, actually about 10 miles away as the crow flies, Rogue River being considered one of the safest places, where I lived would probably not even notice anything happened.

    Oh well, I am old enough that ground zero is a fine location for me. I would just as soon be dust as to try and survive the aftermath in this area.

  25. Clearing some tabs and stuff while getting caught up on work and reading, and I come across this : https://survivalblog.com/should-i-bug-out-or-survive-in-place-part-1-by-jonathan-hollerman/

    Normally I find something useful in most of the articles on that site, but a quick skim of this one and I’m starting to simmer. Soon I’ll have time to ‘in depth’ it and I’ll boil.

    There’s a bunch that I think is wrong, and wrong headed in the article, and it’s especially egregious as it purports to have the ‘real deal’ for prepping.

    Quick scan-

    logical contradictions, sweeping generalizations, abrasive tone, appeals to authority (and inappropriate authority at that), and quite a stunning inability to see his own face reflected in the mirror.

    bah.

    n

  26. More tab clearing.

    Article in Security Today, a trade mag for the security industry.

    https://securitytoday.com/articles/2017/02/01/terminal-upgrade.aspx

    “Terminal One at JFK International Airport had relied on a limited analog surveillance system and a separate, older IP system that were independent of each other. Both were inadequate and lacked the functionality that Terminal One needed. ”

    So they did. In the process they got a LOT more capability. Matt Bracken type of capability. Anyone who thinks the stuff Matt has the state do or the toys the state has are unrealistic, keep in mind that this is the stuff they admit to and brag about. Some pull quotes.

    “… designed and implemented a … system to manage 500 to 600 cameras, including the installation of 160 new cameras….The Milestone Mobile client is used by air terminal managers to view video on their mobile devices. The VMS can be integrated with … access control system so all alarms and door information can be accessed from one centralized system . Additionally, the advanced VMS integrates with the video from the NVRs used by the terminal’s restaurants and vendors, enabling broader coverage of the terminal.”

    In other words, if a door opens, the system can automatically highlight the camera view covering the door, ditto for stuff like occupancy sensors, movement sensors, etc. and their remotely accessible system can also look into the freestanding surveillance systems deployed by concessionaires (restaurants, stores, etc).

    “Greater video coverage means the terminal can be protected against a range of threats, including security breaches, aggressive actions, or injury and liability issues. With many agencies requiring access to the system, from the FBI to building maintenance, the terminal’s new system is more user friendly, making it much easier for operators to manage. ”

    Not only can they see it on their mobile devices, they have granted access to THE FBI among other “agencies”. Remember that they are linked to the store and restaurant cams too.

    “The terminal has close to one Petabyte of storage due to both security requirements and powerful analytics from Agent Vi that are used on recorded video, and to search across cameras. “

    Analytics are what allows them to ask the system to show them everyone with a red hat, or alert if there is anyone acting aggressively, or loitering, or when anyone sets down an object and moves away. Searching across cameras means following someone thru the facility.

    ““The versatility of the system is great and it’s so easy to use,” said the head of security for Terminal One Management (name omitted for security reasons). “From a security standpoint, we can capture what we need on a daily basis and it gives us great visibility into areas we never had before.” ”

    Even who works there is too secret for you to know….

    nick

    added- the press release that most of the article came from has pictures.

    https://www.milestonesys.com/files/Communications/Customer%20Stories/Transportation/Milestone%20JFK%20Terminal%201%20Case%20Study.pdf

    added- and a glaring cut and paste error right in the middle……

  27. _Homeland_ by Cory Doctorow

    I view the I-5 corridor south of Downtown Seattle as something out of a Stephenson or Doctorow novel. The Dystopia has arrived in that area.

    Of Doctorow’s books, I like “Makers” and “Down And Out In The Magic Kingdom” even though the latter is a little more sci fi than cyberpunk/Dystopia.

    For the record: The Mansion *is* perfect … but I kinda like the new 3D effects with the “Hitchhiking Ghosts” in Orlando and “Hatbox Ghost” in Anaheim.

    Stephenson does a pretty good job describing modern Seattle in “Reamde” except he gets the Lacey Cabelas merchandise wrong to the point that it makes me wonder if he’s even been in there. Probably not.

  28. “When the new female and very liberal SAMS CEO Rosalind Brewer admitted to discriminating against white males and said she preferred diversity (over competence) we left SAMS and never looked back.”

    Looks like she is now gone – for whatever reason…

  29. Stupid ass obuttwadcare. Only company we have in E TN is Humana. Asshole insurance company doesn’t cover much of anything. How can they be losing money when they don’t cover much of anything and are sucking $850 a month just for my wife? Oh wait, I know. They are compensating the top brass millions of dollars while shafting the people they are supposed to be insuring. obuttwadcare is a massive scam and I doubt the trumpster will come up with anything any better.

    Next year when Humana drops out there will be no coverage except for private pay. That will cost me about $1200 a month with a high deductible. I am giving serious thought to just skipping the insurance and taking the gamble. I doubt I will have $14K of medical expenses for my wife. If I do I will just pay $10 a month for the rest of my life. I may as well just pay the penalty as that will be much cheaper.

    Damn you obama. May you rot in hell snuggled up against the hildabeast while sucking billy boy’s dick.

    Much more of this and I may be just as optimistic as OFD.

  30. Well, my Kroger is just 5 min away and I go 3 to 4 times a week and usually by less than 12 items per visit. So, I’m in the store less than 15 minutes and back home within 25.

    Costco, Sams and Walmart are about 15 -20 minutes away with checkout lines about that long. Don’t want to spend an hour on each trip to one of those.

  31. Well, it looks like the tRump supporters that Cankles termed “deplorables” are at it again

    Oakland inner city. Detroit west. Want to place bets on the skin color, education level, number of parents, number of parents on the public dole? 9:30 at night, dark, going to examine the video. Not a shot in hell of seeing any face.

    The images cannot be shared publicly, she said, because the suspects appear to be minors.

    Bull muffins. Everyone would see the color of the skin and that is not politically correct.

    Years ago I took a train that went through Oakland. Unfortunately the train had to stop because of a freight train with priority. The train was attacked with rocks and sticks, one such rock breaking the exterior window in the car I was riding (or stopped). Disgusting place not fit for human occupancy.

  32. Only company we have in E TN is Humana. Asshole insurance company doesn’t cover much of anything. How can they be losing money when they don’t cover much of anything and are sucking $850 a month just for my wife? Oh wait, I know. They are compensating the top brass millions of dollars while shafting the people they are supposed to be insuring. obuttwadcare is a massive scam and I doubt the trumpster will come up with anything any better.

    So, are you joining me in extending Medicare to all USA citizens ? I must admit that SteveF almost has me convinced that Single Payer could jump to Single Provider rather quickly with just a few more laws. And then we’ll all be customers of the VA. “shudder”

  33. WRT liberals and Costco:
    Our local Costco is an aberration in the Costco system. Our store manager and employees are obviously conservative. When a local employee gets “promoted” to the “West Side” they have all returned as they cannot stand the hubris, hypocrisy, and bigotry (not to mention the extreme high cost of living) of the Seattle and Portland areas. Managers sent from the “West Side” usually only last 6-months at best over here. The suits in Kirkland allow our Costco to exist because it is one of the top 10 performers in the USofA. You would think they would get a clue.

    We are still relatively conservative here in Tri-Cities WA, but it is becoming a greater and greater battle as the migration from CA, OR, and the West Side pollutes the area. These folks say they could stand the BS in their old homes, but then proceed to try and create the same mess here.

    No Sams Club in this area as Sams rarely if ever goes into an area that already has a Costco. However, Costco will go into areas that have a Sams.

  34. No Sams Club in this area as Sams rarely if ever goes into an area that already has a Costco. However, Costco will go into areas that have a Sams.

    I have memberships in both. I keep on threatening to drop one but that changes each year as to which one. My Sam’s Club is two miles north of the Costco but I prefer Sam’s Club as there are a lot fewer yuppies and dinks. Our Costco seems to draw about 3X the customers of our Sam’s Club.

    BTW, our Sam’s Club still has the ten pack canned beef ravioli by Chef Boyardee for $7. Somebody reported that missing from their Sam’s Club recently IIRC. I would like to buy a pallet of that stuff and stash it somewhere. I figure that it is the perfect canned survival food.
    https://www.samsclub.com/sams/chef-boyardee-beef-ravioli-10-15-oz-cans/187105.ip

  35. So, are you joining me in extending Medicare to all USA citizens

    Either that or the middle finger.

    Insurance companies are out of control. Of course they don’t want to lose money. The compensation to the upper management is absurd. The overhead of the medical industry is absurd because of all the regulations and differing insurance carriers and what they cover.

    Drug companies that are out of control. Drug companies that are jacking the prices through the roof and insurance companies refusing to cover the high priced drugs. A drug that costs $35 in Canada is $500 in the U.S.

  36. “Much more of this and I may be just as optimistic as OFD.”

    As Robert Gore pointed out in his current article at Straight Line Logic, if 10% of the population simply stopped paying taxes, paying credit cards and banks and just quit paying, period, the government would implode forthwith. Cut off that amount of revenue and they’re dead meat. Of course this would cause a massive re-set of the system.

    I can’t get my wife covered under the VA’s rules unless I’m a quadriplegic in a vegetative state, apparently; they require 100% disability. So we’re still playing games with trying to sign her up for the Vermont version of ObummerCARE which has been a fucking disaster here, with a $2 million website in freefall and the money long gone. To somebody. Outside contractors, because no one in the state is qualified to set up a web site or do IT. So the state pays contractors three times what state employees would get, been going on a very long time.

    “…while sucking billy boy’s dick.”

    He’d have to find it, first. Word has it from countless hookers, crack skanks, and raped subordinate women (crickets from the fembats; they gave him a pass, ’cause he’s all for unlimited infinite abortion, and why wouldn’t he be, being a serial adulterer and rapist and pedophile) that his unit is tiny and deformed. There were the same reports about Hitler’s, too. Thus the maniacal egos and diabolical narcissism.

    “Disgusting place not fit for human occupancy.”

    Yeah, Moonbeam fixed it real nice when he was mayor.

    I took a wrong turn there one time (while I was stationed with the AF in Marin County) and went the wrong way down a one-way street, thought I was in Brazzaville or Mombasa for a few minutes, people blowing their horns at me, in my yellow American Motors Rambler Rebel. No problemo, though, as I had a loaded M16 on the front seat with me. I just kept going until I could find a way to GTFO. Haven’t been back since. My main gun guy over on South Hero Island up here was an Oakland PD street cop in the late 1960s. He saw all the chit going down with the Panthers and other criminals, plus insane crime on the weekend nights. He was also in Vietnam as a tourist while shit was blowing up just blocks away and the sky was filled with smoke and the sounds of small arms fire and artillery. I think I was in Thailand around that same time, so we have nice chats a few times per year. Now he specializes in custom shotguns, but will deal the lowest prices via Gallery of Guns than anybody else in this AO.

    Until I get my own FFL this summah.

  37. Yes, that’s Burlap, the biggest “city” in Vermont, and a major college town. Full of incompetent lawyers, lobbyists, media rumpswabs, hipsters, hippies, and wealthy libtards. They got a fight on their hands though for a while when they started messing around trying to change the name of the school’s team. And now the lefties are whining because it took so long, boo-hoo. Had nothing whatsoever to do with the Confederacy and our own minutemen and militia were themselves rebels during our War of Independence, some of it fought in Vermont, at Bennington, Ticonderoga and Hubbardton. Also on Lake Champlain nearby with Benedict Arnold a major actor in the drama.

    Naturally the skool board vote was unanimous and they got their way again, photoshopping American history, just like the Soviets used to do.

  38. I can’t get my wife covered under the VA’s rules unless I’m a quadriplegic in a vegetative state, apparently; they require 100% disability.

    So that is why my FIL (father-in-law) is not classified as 100% disabled, he is not in a vegetative state. He is classified by the VA as 90% disabled with a 100% payment since he is in a skilled nursing and rehabilitation center. It took my wife many phone calls over six months to get him that 100% payment which pays for 60% of his nursing home cost.

  39. I was using ironic hyperbole; we have guys in our group who are 100% and they’re functional and can move around and hold jobs and suchlike. Usually drastic TBI and hearing loss plus PTSD. I have minor TBI, minor hearing loss and “chronic and severe” PTSD, lol. I might be able to bump mine up to 80% but I doubt I could get the full boat. I have a year to try it, though.

    Meanwhile I’ve just applied for the VA’s vocational rehab program, so they can pay for my gunsmith training and I can work at home. As much or as little as I want, but I’d like to bring in what I used to make as an IT drone, doing something I like. Plus buying and selling and doing appraisals.

  40. I can’t get my wife covered under the VA’s rules unless I’m a quadriplegic in a vegetative state, apparently

    Well, you’ve got one of those covered… 🙂

  41. Well, it looks like the tRump supporters that Cankles termed “deplorables” are at it again.

    BART. Oakland. Figures.

    I didn’t see a mention of where the driver was hiding during the holdup. That is a nice union gig, six figures, and every train has a driver by law even though automation was possible years ago.

    I will get on BART, but only during daylight hours.

    The last time I rode BART through Oakland, I was by myself on the train except for an artsy prog coed a few seats away. As soon as we pulled into the Oakland Airport bus transfer, the girl jumped up, slid into the seat next to mine, and buried her head so hard into my shoulder that I could smell her shampoo. Looking up, I immediately understood why as three youths entered the train wearing colors.

    I said “okay” under my breath and went back to my book. As soon as the youths got off at the next stop, artsy girl went back to her original seat without even as much as a “thanks”. I guess she figured I had done my duty as male protector but was still unworthy of gratitude since I possessed Y chromosomes and a haircut that screams “Republican, concealed carry”.

  42. BTW, our Sam’s Club still has the ten pack canned beef ravioli by Chef Boyardee for $7. Somebody reported that missing from their Sam’s Club recently IIRC. I would like to buy a pallet of that stuff and stash it somewhere. I figure that it is the perfect canned survival food.

    Thanks. I will check our local Sam’s in Austin tomorrow when I make my regular weekly run.

    The canned ravioli is a hurricane preparedness staple in Florida. That and Dinty Moore stew.

    To quote the great Paul Hogan in his most famous role, “You can live on it, but it tastes like shit.” My kids love the stuff, however.

    I usually keep a few cases in the pantry out of habit being a near FL native … well, more native than Mr. Margaritaville, definitely.

    (I can take you to the place that serves the cheeseburger that inspired the song. One question, however — How do you feel about bugs. Lots of ’em to the point that the state provides cans of Off at the dock. Ah, paradise.)

  43. It would have been interesting to see inside that grrl’s head for those few moments. I hazard the guess that Mr. Greg’s interpretation of the entire incident is 100% accurate.

    They need us when they need us; otherwise fuck off and die. Soon they’ll have robots to do all that Y-chromosome stuff. Fine by me. I sure won’t miss the drama. And MrAtoz will build us our own robots from parts he can scavenge from his fleet of drones.

    Princess just dropped by, mainly to get yet another permission slip to drive the VT-registered-in-my-name Matrix back to Moh-ree-all; SNAFU, of course, because she still hasn’t renewed her Murkan passport and uses her Canadian one while driving a Murkan car not registered to her. This flummoxes the bejesus outta the border cops, for some reason.

    Then she leaves a paper shopping bag in the driveway. Imbecile that I am, I’m figuring maybe she left me some organic brownies or something. Nope. It’s a bag full of trash from the car. Merci beaucoups, mon petit jolie fille…

  44. It would have been interesting to see inside that grrl’s head for those few moments. I hazard the guess that Mr. Greg’s interpretation of the entire incident is 100% accurate.

    “Backpack. Book. He looks like a commuter. Possibly carrying — the haircut says ‘NRA’. Guessing Limbaugh junkie. Probably won’t try to rape me … unlike the three guys boarding the train shortly.”

  45. Then she leaves a paper shopping bag in the driveway. Imbecile that I am, I’m figuring maybe she left me some organic brownies or something. Nope. It’s a bag full of trash from the car.

    Be glad it was not a bag of dog poop.

  46. Thanks. I will check our local Sam’s in Austin tomorrow when I make my regular weekly run.

    Be sure to keep Austin weird.

    The canned ravioli is a hurricane preparedness staple in Florida. That and Dinty Moore stew.

    I am not surprised, I rarely have an original idea. And Rolaids, that stuff gives me indigestion. Of course, everything gives me indigestion nowadays.

  47. “Possibly carrying — the haircut says ‘NRA’.”

    I sure do hope that the National Reciprocity bill introduced by the senior senator from The Great State of Texas passes. “National Reciprocity Bill Makes its Way to Congress”
    https://bearingarms.com/beth-b/2017/03/04/national-reciprocity-bill-makes-way-congress/
    and
    http://okgrassroots.com/?p=666846

    “Earlier this week, Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) introduced Senate Bill 446, the Constitutional Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017, which would allow Americans to conceal carry a firearm across state lines.”

    And Texas may become a constitutional carry state this year if the Leg passes the bill that they are discussing. But I doubt it.
    http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/2017/04/robert-farago/texas-constitutional-carry-saga-continues/

  48. IIRC, they served from the big institutional-sized cans of Chef Boyardee ravioli back there in junior high skool and high skool. I gobbled that stuff down and they also, for some odd reason, served it with Italian bread and peanut butter. To this day that is one of my favorite belly-busting meals, though I’ve gone upscale a bit from the Chef on the ravioli. And now it comes in fifty shades of fillings, like everything else. Also spaghetti-and-meatballs with Italian bread and peanut butter. Crazy.

    I think I’ll pick up a few cases this spring/summah.

    Let’s see, me on the BART: taller than the average bear and well over 200 pounds with a flannel shirt untucked (CCW?), cargo pants, Colonel Sanders goatee and dark red ponytail, possible war-vet hat or maybe just a baseball team, also with a book, and trail shoes. Photogray bifocals. Harmless old guy? Lothario? Psycho right-wing Catholic gun nut? Why not hassle him and find out? Make his day.

    (old buggers like me just don’t give a shit anymore)

  49. Can’t eat any of the canned pastas with orange sauce. Tastes nasty and tears up my stomach. Kids don’t like “red” sauces either, preferring butter, salt, and Parmesan sprinkles. They wouldn’t even finish the canned pasta when I tried.

    Just got a new backup for my Pelican 1920 FLASHLIGHT. Seams there is an “a” version and the current version. The new version is 120 lumen on high and has a low setting with 12 lumens. Fortunately, the low needs to be triggered with a button press pattern, instead of just alternating or cycling. The new version is also about 1/4″ longer than the old. It’s noticeably brighter side by side than the old, which was pretty bright. Wore a tear in the rubber over the base cap switch on the old one. I’ll see if that’s covered by warranty. I’ve got a box of pelican plastic FLASHLIGHTS with cracks or other issues. Maybe I’ll send them all in. Until the aluminum models came out, I wouldn’t recommend pelican flashlights. Now I do.

    nick

  50. NRA Launches Advanced Concealed Carry Training And Insurance Program

    https://bearingarms.com/bob-o/2017/04/24/nra-launches-advanced-training-self-defense-insurance/

    The article discusses, in vaguely general terms, becoming an instructor, which would be a fairly good $$ gig $$. It sounds like a fairly demanding program. The insurance is a typical 3 tier system though I seem to have the idea that it’s more about reimbursement than up front coverage.

  51. I mentioned that I took a little shortwave radio with me to the Caribbean. I had a bit of time a couple of evenings to spin around the bands.

    I found that my signals were at least 2x as strong when I had the antenna touching the balcony handrail. I was facing south on St Thomas island. Good strong signals all over the bands from 5mhz on up. Lots of stations. Tons more than I hear at home. Nothing below 5 mhz though except noise. I’m gonna blame the lights at the hotel, and possibly the antenna situation. Lots of spanish language as expected, and cuba of course, although not in the places I expected (6 mhz). Lots of chinese language too. Some of the US broadcasters from TN and FL. Alex Jones, coming in mixed and weak from FL. Mush Mouth too (religious broadcaster, always on, 24/7, sounds like he’s got a mouth full.)

    Without my computer and the “what’s on now” page, I couldn’t be certain where anything was from but I heard a lot of LOUD stations, and a bunch that were good strong signals.

    Could have been the local environment was filled with good RF, or the saltwater location helped RX or just good band conditions, but I’ve never heard so many stations.

    Fun to finally hear stuff on some of the bands that are normally quiet up here…

    Well worth the small size it took up in my bag.

    nick

  52. Noticed an article that WalMart is testing some lower prices to get after Kroger and Aldi

    Walmart can really put the squeeze on vendors. That is both good and bad.

  53. Chef ravi, Dinty stew, and Chilimac. The trifecta of yummy. I could live on that stuff.

  54. “As North Korea Speeds Its Nuclear Program, U.S. Fears Time Will Run Out”
    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/24/world/asia/north-korea-nuclear-missile-program.html?_r=0

    “WASHINGTON — Behind the Trump administration’s sudden urgency in dealing with the North Korean nuclear crisis lies a stark calculus: a growing body of expert studies and classified intelligence reports that conclude the country is capable of producing a nuclear bomb every six or seven weeks.”

    That is a lot of nuclear material and processing with horrible waste streams.

    Note to self: take along a Geiger counter next time I go to NK. In fact, skip going to NK all together.

  55. “WD Red 8TB NAS Hard Disk Drive – 5400 RPM Class SATA 6 Gb/s 128MB Cache 3.5 Inch – WD80EFZX”
    https://www.amazon.com/Red-8TB-Hard-Disk-Drive/dp/B01BYLY4DM/

    Looks like WD finally got enough drives to fill the channel as the price has dropped from $305 to $280 over the last couple of weeks. My target price is $250 at which point I plan to buy at least two, maybe three to jump our internal LAN backup drives from 4 TB to 8 TB.

  56. “…becoming an instructor, which would be a fairly good $$ gig $$. It sounds like a fairly demanding program.”

    I dunno how much $ would be involved unless one was in a large urban area with lotsa chances to run classes. Not so much up this way. I got the impression the insurance was mainly focused on getting us legal help immediately after a defensive shooting event. The delectable (but married-with-chillunz) Dana Loesch is pushing it and has it herself.

    “Fun to finally hear stuff on some of the bands that are normally quiet up here…”

    Works the same way up in PEI and Noveau Brunswick on the coast. Pick up lots more activity, even on a tiny, cheap little SW portable with crappy antenna. Also see about a zillion more stars in the night sky. Ditto for where wife was in NM this past week.

    ” The trifecta of yummy. I could live on that stuff.”

    Throw in the Italian bread, peanut butter, and cold fruit cocktails or diced pears and I’m on board!

    In fact, skip going to NK all together.”

    Bingo.

    Selco email just now:

    I can attest to this particular phenomenon occurring not only during stressful events over time, but also long, long after those times. Forex, I saw dead Marines on my living room couch twelve or so years ago, except they weren’t in their usual cammies and drenched in blood; dress uniforms but same guys. Wife saw me sitting there crying. Also heard running series of voices at night around that time. Plus sitting on top of the hill at the back of our yard and staring into space for hours. That really squicked her out.

    http://shtfschool.com/survival-psychology/pressure/

    Bear in mind this is the kind of chit that can happen if SHTF here for even a few weeks. That kinda stress will start to blow circuits. And if you’re also on the very-low-calorie food plan and still doing three times more physical exertion to stay alive, that don’t help very much.

  57. When I was there last Friday, the local Sam’s club had a boxed assortment of the single serving Chef Boyardee stuff I agree with Mr. Flandry, it’s nasty canned pasta with orange sauce. But it’s also a hurricane prep staple, here in Lower Alabama. I didn’t pay attention to the price, and I haven’t the faintest where the nearest Costco is for comparison’s sake.

  58. There are other things that are tasty and less likely to upset stomachs. Of course, you may LIKE the taste, but to me it is identical to stomach acid and bile.

    n

    cans of Chicken a la king are good, doesn’t taste bad cold, is good added to anything from slice of bread to bowl of rice, can be fortified with canned chicken, etc. Even my wife was surprised how good it was.

    Beanless chili is a staple for many because it is widely available canned meat. I started out with a lot of it. NO MORE. I’ve found much better (tastier, more versatile, etc) canned meats. (I see a lot of homes while doing my estate sale shopping with 2 gallons or a flat of bottled water and a case of chili as their sole food preps)

    n

  59. “I didn’t see anything in the article I disagreed with and that is rare indeed.”

    Ditto.

    I should do a sorta full-disclosure thang again here; I was a short-timer guy back during the Indochina capers and a machine-gunner. I didn’t stack a whole lotta time with the rifles and even less with the handguns. And when I got onto the various cop jobs, it was still the era, mostly, of revolvers and nightsticks.

    So I’m learning nearly from scratch, the semi-auto pistols and contemporary versions of the M16. Chit-loads of people nowadays know FAH more than I do.

    That said, I am plodding along with the local range and the NRA classes and have been reading and studying and watching vids and doing dry-fire training several times a week for a while now, and also using a hand-finger exerciser, because I’ve noticed my left hand has been dropping stuff lately.

    There is by orders of magnitude, fah better training available nowadays, and fah better weapons and gear. Take advantage while it’s still available.

    My EDC has me toting either the Shield or the CZ-P09 at about 4:30 OWB in a KT-Mech customized holster; I took the Streamlights off them and am installing tritium night sights. In cold weather and heavy jackets and coats it’s a Glock G40 10mm. I have a spare mag on my belt at about 7:30, again, in a KT-Mech holder. I’ve had the guns under jackets, sweaters and sweatshirts so far with no printing, but soon, as the weather heats up, I’ll be toting under an untucked shirt, which is pretty common up here. If I have to dress up so that I can’t have my shirt untucked, then I’m probably wearing a sport coat or I’m in a workplace where I can’t or won’t do OCW. In that case, it’s either in a secure pocket holster (the Shield) or back on my belt under the sport coat. Although I have a spare mag on my belt for the Shield and the CZ, I carry another one loose in my left pocket with nothing else in that pocket. Yeah, the gunfight stats say I only need three rounds, but I don’t wanna be That Guy and run out during some kind of incident/event. Which, truth be told, is pretty unlikely up here in Retroville, but one never knows, does one? Who woulda thought San Berdoo or rural northern New Hampshuh?

    And if we have some level of SHTF and goblins and gremlins are roaming around the AO, I’ll mostly be sitting at home here with a rifle, and/or taking one with me if I have to venture out.

    That article was pretty good; I hope he follows up with one on cleaning, maintenance, basic repairs, etc., and training recommendations.

  60. He’s an interesting guy, a decent novelist, and has some honest and even painful stories.

    Read his article on how he became a jackbooted oppressor while in Bosnia and see how easy it is even for someone with a conscience and maturity. If you are hoping the Oathkeepers will prevent anything untoward from happening on CONUS, better think again.

    With that and meatspace in mind, I’m doing a volunteer gig as role player for our constables this Friday at the local High School. No idea what that will involve.

    Still thinking about whether I’ll role play for the riot squad next month. It was a couple of long nights last time and I learned what I’d hoped to during the last time.

    Got some family stuff this week, and tons of catching up to do on spring clean and maintenance that keeps getting pushed back.

    I better get crackin’.

    n

  61. Yes, that’s Burlap, the biggest “city” in Vermont, and a major college town. Full of incompetent lawyers, lobbyists, media rumpswabs, hipsters, hippies, and wealthy libtards.

    Sounds like Austin, Texas. Only on a way smaller scale where Burlap is the amateur ranking and Austin is the professional ranking.

  62. _Homeland_ by Cory Doctorow

    I view the I-5 corridor south of Downtown Seattle as something out of a Stephenson or Doctorow novel. The Dystopia has arrived in that area.

    BTW, the reason why I posted this review is the excellent description of the Clinton archipelagos sliding into dystopia. I suspect as time goes on, we will see more and more thrashing about as the major cities fight to keep their heads above water. And, this is not just limited to the blue states, Dallas and Houston in Texas are both trying to figure out how to pay their bills and wipe all the people’s butts.

  63. That said, I am plodding along with the local range and the NRA classes and have been reading and studying and watching vids and doing dry-fire training several times a week for a while now, and also using a hand-finger exerciser, because I’ve noticed my left hand has been dropping stuff lately.

    You are assuming that it is a hand strength problem ? Might I submit that you could be having some peripheral nephropathy due to your war injuries in your neck ?

    My wife has major neck issues from a moron rear ending her Subaru on Main street in 1980 while she was stopped for red light. He was going 60 mph in his Cadillac and never hit the brakes, pushing her Subaru over 200 foot through the red light and down the road. My wife is slowly losing feeling in her peripherals and dropping stuff all the time. Plus the extensive chemotherapy in 2005 did not help that either.

  64. Or thoracic outlet syndrome which from personal experience can be improved without surgery. Shoulder exercises that lift the shoulders so the outlet doesn’t pinch the nerve can help a lot. There is a definitive test for TOS too.

    n

  65. Yeah, I’m exercising and very slooooowwwwwllllllyyyyy losing weight, gram by gram, evidently. Probably from muscle groups and not the inner tube.

    One of the things I think I’m doing is what sportsball players often do, and we won’t mention anything other than the frequent mistake I see among certain players, and that’s turning away and/or starting to take off w/o really having control of the ball yet, or in my case, small object or tool. I’ll pay more attention to WTF I’m doing accordingly.

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