Wed. Dec. 19, 2018 – keeps marching on … at double time

56F and drizzling. Wet and miserable.

Countdown to the end of the year keeps going. I’m falling further behind.

Big stack of stuff to do today, we’ll see how much gets done. Rain WON’T help.

And the world continues to go mad. Talking to the Russians = go to jail, but selling them nuclear materials = good job, here’s a pile of money, go write a book– that is, if you are the right sort of pig.

I know I’m not the right sort. The things I believe in as correct and necessary are mocked as outdated, stupid, badthink. My very existence is vilified, and otherwise intelligent and tolerant people nod along. The actual accomplishments of people like me are dismissed and ridiculed, while the extreme and bizarre mental illnesses of others are celebrated. Perversions and mutilations, the most degrading and harmful behaviours- revered, worshiped, and set as an example for children to aspire to. Yet people just like me plod along, faithfully doing what’s necessary so that civilization continues for another day.

http://www.kiplingsociety.co.uk/poems_martha.htm

n

Author: Nick Flandrey

Mid 50s, stay at home dad, with two elementary school age girls. Love my family and my life.

54 thoughts on “Wed. Dec. 19, 2018 – keeps marching on … at double time”

  1. 30º and sunny here. Supposed to get to 46º this afternoon. That’s shorts weather in these parts. Looking forward to it.

    I’m evaluating some new timing software written to replace the software I’m using now. It’s supposed to be “released” by now, but it’s not even really Beta quality yet. I’m communicating with the primary developer about the shortcomings and making suggestions. I used to sit in his chair (in another type of business), so I’m not looking to bust things up for him. But if I can offer insights (from a timer’s perspective as well as a developer’s perspective), I’m going to. It shows real promise.

    I had started to write my own version of timing/scoring software myself several years ago. Never really got off the ground. It’s a tight market, and breaking in to compete with the big boys is tough. In this case, a big player in online registration brought the developer of the software I use in-house, so there’s a VERY clear path of progression from the old stuff to the new stuff.

  2. The IT guys at work have built themselves a fortress even they can’t penetrate.

    I use the Solver, an add-in that is provided by Microsoft with Excel. It has stopped working. When I try there is an error that it can’t find the DLL (although it is present) and the antivirus software pops up to tell me that Excel has performed an suspicious action is being blocked. I call the help desk and they add an exception to the AV and it all works for a few hours or a day, then back to being blocked. This cycle has repeated several times. The IT guys are stumped.

    Annoying. I have data that needs to be “solved”.

  3. Sounds like the erroneous info that somehow keeps getting added back to you medical file at the pharmacy. Once a year it returns from some offline reservoir of bad data, and needs to be expunged again. NO IDEA where it keeps coming back from.

    n

    I had to uninstall the mcafflockerAV that came with my new pc to even get online at all and download Firefox. That machine is still not seeing the rest of the network properly either. Windows firewall is blocking something critical (and windows related!)

  4. I had to uninstall the mcafflockerAV that came with my new pc to even get online at all and download Firefox. That machine is still not seeing the rest of the network properly either. Windows firewall is blocking something critical (and windows related!)

    The only way I was able to access my home server Samba shares with my new Lenovo laptop was to nuke Windows 10 and reinstall using an iso from Microsoft, *not* the recovery partition.

    In 10 years of working at the Death Star provision VPNs for the Fortune 500, I never saw a laptop malware infection which wasn’t related to pr0n and/or illegal software and video downloads. A little more aggressive stance on termination for inappropriate use of company assets would be a lot more effective than increasingly expensive layers of antivirus and firewall, some of which come from organizations which I would never trust with my personal machines *ever.*.

  5. From his lips to god’s ear….

    We’ll see if it really happens. As we’ve seen this week with the Flynn sentencing, vast portions of the Executive branch are not working in the best interests of the current occupant of the White House and probably never will.

    And, Trump or not, we’ve let the “wars” drag on to the point where the Pournelle Iron Law has taken hold in parts of the military. Syria falls under the purview of people like my perverted alcoholic REMF former neighbors in Florida who don’t want their 17 year bacchanalia at MacDill to end.

  6. In a bit of synchronicity, Denninger summarized my thoughts on the matter almost entirely. Not necessarily in my words or style, but it saves me the effort…

    https://market-ticker.org/

    You Dislike White Patriarchy? Good.

    TL:DR

    Put up or shut up. If you don’t like the white male patriarchy, stop using the world it provided for you. Oh, and you’ll end up slaves to the muslims besides.

    n

  7. I know I’m not the right sort. The things I believe in as correct and necessary are mocked as outdated, stupid, badthink. My very existence is vilified, and otherwise intelligent and tolerant people nod along. The actual accomplishments of people like me are dismissed and ridiculed, while the extreme and bizarre mental illnesses of others are celebrated.

    This is why the ProgLibTurds will be the first ones squealing when CWII arrives. They have no life skills. Paraphrasing “Zombie Land”, the PLT’s will be the first to go.

  8. MbS got his personal fortune topped up after his coup by extorting the rest of the players. Anyone else think about this wrt the US becoming a net exporter of energy??

    The US is a net exporter as long as cheap loans continue.

    The Saudi oil is much cheaper/easier to pull out of the ground.

  9. This would make OFD’s day…

    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-12-19/drastic-reversal-us-prepares-full-withdrawal-forces-syria-immediately

    From his lips to god’s ear….

    We, the USA, are broke. Even if we are sending $11 billion to Mexico as a freebie to enrich the pockets of the rich.
    https://www.apnews.com/0fcda32812024680ad98676379c47233

    The financial apocalypse of the USA is approaching faster and faster.
    https://www.bloombergquint.com/politics/paul-ryan-s-legacy-of-debt#gs.TfFGJDk

  10. been saying this for years, as they tried to diversify, and change their oil wealth for other forms of wealth…

    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-12-18/saudi-arabia-going-bankrupt-taleb-exclaims-after-seeing-kingdoms-latest-budget

    MbS got his personal fortune topped up after his coup by extorting the rest of the players. Anyone else think about this wrt the US becoming a net exporter of energy??

    The USA is now the world’s number one producer of crude oil and natural gas. The USA will be in this position for the next 200 years at a minimum. We have been blessed beyond all belief.
    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-oil-eia/in-major-shift-us-now-exports-more-oil-than-it-ships-in-idUSKBN1O51X7

    Unless, the crazy global warming fake scientists succeed in their endeavor to regulate fire. Should they succeed, they will put unimaginable taxes on the price of energy in the USA. And they will give free energy to the third world at the cost of the people in the USA. It will be the most horrible distortion of the free market ever seen.

  11. Unless, the crazy global warming fake scientists succeed in their endeavor to regulate fire. Should they succeed, they will put unimaginable taxes on the price of energy in the USA. And they will give free energy to the third world at the cost of the people in the USA. It will be the most horrible distortion of the free market ever seen.

    Carbon taxes would be political suicide at this point, but, absent a Supreme Court decision or Congress actually writing some law for a change, California effectively sets vehicle standards. They’re on a course in CA to eliminate most private ownership of cars.

  12. While it’s great that Trump is withdrawing troops from Syria, claiming to have “defeated ISIS in Syria” is a bit rich. The US basically created ISIS in Syria by supplying Syrian rebels, in an attempt to overthrow Assad.

    ISIS got out of control and expanded to other countries, where the US did fight them. Feed a rabid dog, and be surprised when it bites you. But in Syria? Um…no, it was Russia that stepped in to help the Syrian government beat back ISIS, despite US protests and continuing covert support. It’s now clear that Assad’s government is going to survive, although Syria has been absolutely devastated by the fighting.

    So…declare victory and leave.

  13. The US is a net exporter as long as cheap loans continue.

    The Saudi oil is much cheaper/easier to pull out of the ground.

    Nobody really knows what the cost of Saudi oil is. They disguise it well. I can tell you that running 83 GOSP plants is incredibly expensive and uses an incredible amount of natural for the two to four gas turbines per plant. I am also hearing that average well lasts less than 30 days now before the water flood converts it to water production. All of the new wells are in the fingers of the Ghawar reservoir which means lots of moving around for the drilling equipment (expensive !). In the USA, the average drilling platform drills over 100 wells before the drilling rig has to be moved.


  14. average well lasts less than 30 days now before the water flood converts it to water production

    What does that mean, that the lakes of oil are very shallow?

  15. average well lasts less than 30 days now before the water flood converts it to water production

    What does that mean, that the lakes of oil are very shallow?

    Ghawar is very light crude oil. If the reservoir pressure drops below 3,000 psia then the crude oil will irrevocably convert to natural gas. So, they flood the reservoir with seawater to keep the pressure up. As they drill new wells, the seawater follows the pressure drop and moves to the well location so the product is mostly crude oil on day 1, 90% crude oil on day 4, 50% crude oil on day 15, and 10% crude oil on day 30 (Note that these are SWAGs on my part). The balance is water. At some point between 10% crude oil and 0% crude oil, the well is plugged and abandoned.

  16. even at 170mph it’s gonna take a lot of holes to help reduce cars on a 16 lane freeway

    Other articles I saw today cite much lower speeds.

    The retractable side wheels on the cars look suspiciously like the same type Disney uses on the monorail systems.

    https://www.wired.com/story/elon-musk-boring-company-car-flinging-tunnel/

    Cue Phil Hartman …

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZDOI0cq6GZM

    At work, we have contracts to put our equipment on the CA express lanes. Once our stuff goes in, it will be a nit to restrict access to preferred classes of vehicles or make the tolls for certain classes prohibitive. And that’s current tech, not the scary toys I’m NDA-ed about.

  17. Today’s Market-Ticker? Hmm. Looks like something I posted over there a while back. So, perhaps a pat on the back for me.

    Yesterday’s link for the Streamlight lanterns? He says his affiliate link sold 96. I can be blamed for three. I have no idea what the pay is for that. 1%? My order shipped today from Fort Worth and UPS tracking says tomorrow.

    I went to Wal-Mart today. What a mess. The aisle in front of the check stands is full of 5×5 pallets/displays nicely spaced about six feet apart. And LOTS of fat people just standing there looking at the crap. I swear several looked like they were about to start drooling on the floor. But they would have to lean over to drool on the floor. On the plus side, I had to detour through Women’s Lingerie. Ok, sort of a plus as there are no models. Not even manikins. Once past the check-out area, the place wasn’t bad.

    Did I remember to buy batteries for the lanterns? I just thought of it. 🙂

  18. “The Saudi oil is much cheaper/easier to pull out of the ground. ”

    No one really knows what they have left. Indications are possibly not much, based on their other actions.

    80/20 rule says they’ve gotten the 80% with 20% effort, the last 20% is going to take a heck of a lot more work.

    n

  19. “I went to Wal-Mart today. ”

    whelp, there’s your problem!

    I can’t stand the smell. And they all have the same smell.

    n

  20. um. I know I’m like, doom and gloom lately, and mostly, but https://www.zerohedge.com/ !

    This really could be the big unwind people have been expecting since 2016. We’re going into a weekend, and no one wants to spoil Christmas, but no one wants to lose their whole position over the holiday either… so ‘sell all the things!!!11!1!!111’

    I’m gonna bet on more of the same, continuing down. The guys saying buy the dip, and everything’s fine are looking for suckers to buy what they want to unload…

    n

  21. “The Saudi oil is much cheaper/easier to pull out of the ground. ”

    No one really knows what they have left. Indications are possibly not much, based on their other actions.

    80/20 rule says they’ve gotten the 80% with 20% effort, the last 20% is going to take a heck of a lot more work.

    The Saudis have two main oil fields, Ghawar, and Safaniya. Both have been used for around 80 years. Both are in decline, possibly severe decline.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ghawar_Field
    and
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Safaniya_Oil_Field

    Ghawar is a super super giant oil field. There is only one super super giant in the world. All of the main reservoir area have been drilled. What is being drilled now are the fingers of the reservoir. I do not have a clue if they have drilled all of them yet.

    I agree with the 80/20 analogy. That last 20% is taking a lot of work. The 83 GOSP (Gas / Oil Separation Plant) plants use an enormous amount of natural gas. The function of the GOSP plants is to separate the crude oil (up to 90+% water) production from the entrained seawater at very high pressure and put the seawater back into the reservoir for reservoir pressure maintenance.

  22. I can’t stand the smell. And they all have the same smell.

    This Wal-Mart doens’t smell. But I know what you mean. I don’t go back to those stores.

  23. I can’t stand the smell. And they all have the same smell.

    In “Reamde”, Neal Stephenson theorizes that there is only one Wal Mart and the corporation’s engineers manipulate space-time to make thousands of entrances/exits. You are quantum locked to exit at the location through which you enter the store.

    (The last truly cool Stephenson book.)

    Wal Mart sells a lot of cr*p, but they’re honest about it. The only time I’ve ever had a problem returning something was kiddie pajamas my wife bought on Black Friday special — that loss leader merchandise requires a special refund form and store manager approval.

  24. In “Reamde”, Neal Stephenson theorizes that there is only one Wal Mart and the corporation’s engineers manipulate space-time to make thousands of entrances/exits. You are quantum locked to exit at the location through which you enter the store.

    I’ve got “Reamde” sitting in my SBR (strategic book reserve) on the bottom shelf in the back stack. Yes, my SBR is double stacked, what of it ! It is only 400 to 500 books. And if the wife makes one more comment about the double stacking, I might just tell her about the moving box of books in our closet (on her side !).

    Anyway, should I move “Reamde” to the front stack where I might get to it in the next five years ?

  25. Hah, I don’t remember that from Reamde… the plane takeoff under cover was cool, and I agree, last good book. I still like Sangamon Taylor from the first one, and there are scenes in there that choke me up, like when he tells his girlfriend he loves her because he thinks it’s the last thing she’ll ever hear….

    seveneves sucked. diamond age bogged down in all that stupid drummer nonsense. YT and Hiro ROCK, and there are SO MANY good things, like living in the UstorIT or franchise nations….Anathem is so full of math jokes, I felt like I was probably missing half the novel. The Baroque Cycle had me wishing I knew a WHOLE lot more history.

    Cryptonomicon was my favorite. Dang, if I spend too much time thinking about it, I’ll need to reread something….

    n

    I liked the deputy sheriff from the one about bioterror he wrote with his uncle too.

  26. “should I move “Reamde” to the front stack where I might get to it in the next five years ?”

    depends what ELSE you have in the stack….

    I’d read the Harry Dresden series before Reamde. There are 15 or 16 of those….

    n

  27. “The US basically created ISIS in Syria by supplying Syrian rebels, ”

    like the TSA’s poor service and attitude created the Pre-check program, so they can charge you to minimize your exposure to the TSA….

    n

  28. “should I move “Reamde” to the front stack where I might get to it in the next five years ?”

    depends what ELSE you have in the stack….

    I’d read the Harry Dresden series before Reamde. There are 15 or 16 of those….

    Already read the Harry Dresden series, most are pretty good. I’ve got Mitch Rapp, Jack Reacher, Travis Taylor, Connie Willis, Laurell Hamilton, Jo Clayton, etc, etc, etc.

  29. Hey @nick, not sure I reported this before. I replaced my 2005 Ford Expedition rear hatch struts the other day and am loving it. My old struts did not work very well in the winter time due to nitrogen loss. I also replaced my engine hood struts too. Both were incredibly easy to replace for a handy person, just pop off and pop on.
    https://www.amazon.com/Expedition-Liftgate-Tailgate-Lift-Supports/dp/B00IUUZKDY?tag=ttgnet-20

    BTW, I am 90 miles away from 200,000 miles on my Expy.

  30. Hmmm. I’ve got a Connie Willis in my reserve, haven’t heard of Mitch Rapp, am afraid to start the Jack Reacher (can’t afford the time right now), liked the Ringo parts of the Travis Taylor books better than the TT parts…. but should give him a ttry…

    n

  31. @lynn, I just noticed the struts are less than great in the cold. If I lift them a second time, they hold for now. I did the hood ones when I bought the truck, and yes, for the minimal effort and cost, they are a huge improvement and way better than a broomstick.

    n

  32. even at 170mph it’s gonna take a lot of holes to help reduce cars on a 16 lane freeway

    Other articles I saw today cite much lower speeds.

    Well I believe that is the eventual speed they want to achieve, not the test yesterday, with self driving cars. Teslas of course.

  33. @lynn, I just noticed the struts are less than great in the cold. If I lift them a second time, they hold for now. I did the hood ones when I bought the truck, and yes, for the minimal effort and cost, they are a huge improvement and way better than a broomstick.

    Yeah, I tried pushing up the rear hatch for a while. And I held my hood up for 20 minutes while an Autozone guy replaced my battery for me last winter.

    That sharp edge on the rear hatch is right at 6’0″ when it sags a little bit. I am 6’1″. Guess how I know what the sag height was ? At least it did not put me on the ground, I just staggered around for a while saying very naughty words.

  34. Hmmm. I’ve got a Connie Willis in my reserve, haven’t heard of Mitch Rapp, am afraid to start the Jack Reacher (can’t afford the time right now), liked the Ringo parts of the Travis Taylor books better than the TT parts…. but should give him a ttry…

    The Mitch Rapp series was written by the late Vince Flynn. The family has hired a person to continue it which I have yet to verify the worthiness of.
    https://www.amazon.com/Transfer-Power-Mitch-Rapp-Novel-ebook/dp/B002C7Z56I/?tag=ttgnet-20

    I like Travis Taylor but he is definitely a journeyman writer. Not bad for a Rocket Scientist. I liked his Asteroid books
    https://www.amazon.com/Back-Moon-Travis-Taylor/dp/145163773X/?tag=ttgnet-20
    and I loved his Warp Speed books
    https://www.amazon.com/Warp-Speed-1/dp/1416520635/?tag=ttgnet-20
    and his space alien Robinson Crusoe book
    https://www.amazon.com/Human-Choice-Travis-S-Taylor/dp/1606190474/?tag=ttgnet-20

    All real pulpy stuff. And I love pulpy scifi.

  35. In the middle of reading another of Bernard DeLeo’s Nick McCarty “Cold Blooded Assassin” pulp fiction series: https://amzn.to/2rOivfi .

    The “Illuminati” don’t fare too well in these books. Lots of real-life politicians referenced with thinly-disguised names – good for a chuckle as you read them. Right now, reading the latest (book 10) “Hell’s Half Acre” (https://amzn.to/2SdL7tS ).

    Enjoyable series, especially if you are a bit right-leaning. No sympathies for ‘snowflakes’ and ISIS-supporters in the books. All his books are available with Kindle Unlimited. You can read them in any order, but they are enjoyable enough that you might want to start with the first in the series.

  36. Anyway, should I move “Reamde” to the front stack where I might get to it in the next five years ?

    Yes, especially if you need something for a long plane ride.

    I thought “Rise And Fall of DODO” was worth the time, but it isn’t great Stephenson.

    “Seveneves” was Stephenson shilling for Blue Origin. God only knows what he’s currently working on in his spare time away from advising the Magic Leap boondoggle.

    Magic Leap. Broward County. Need I say more?

  37. ”I can’t stand the smell. And they all have the same smell.

    This Wal-Mart doens’t smell. But I know what you mean. I don’t go back to those stores.”

    Most retail chains have a distinctive odor, from the horrific “fragrance” in their “cleaning” sprays. Some specific stores use more of it (including spraying it over hanging clothing, notably) than others. You generally can’t wash the stuff out.
    Of course, a lot of the chemical contamination is from employees or customers who use lots of perfumed products and never actually wash, especially their hands.

  38. That sharp edge on the rear hatch is right at 6’0″ —

    and the LATCH, a bit of metal devilry, is lower than that. I hit my head on the little flocker almost every time.

    @spook, I haven’t ever been in a wal*mart that didn’t have ‘the smell.’

    what is funny is that the very high end of the market spends good money on developing their own signature smell. W hotels, and in fact all the Westins have scent dispensers. They’re all chasing Disney with this, as Disney has been doing it for a lllloooonnnnngggg time. The general stores in the campground still smell exactly like they did in the 70s and 80s. They have intentional smells associated with different areas and properties too. Although I always will associate the smell of hot rubber with their dark rides…

    n

  39. I enjoyed “Rise and Fall of DODO” quite a bit. Not ‘classic’ Stephenson, and I wondered how much he did vs his co-author.

    n

  40. ” @spook, I haven’t ever been in a wal*mart that didn’t have ‘the smell.’ ”

    As I said, some specific stores have it worse than others.
    It’s about how much of the blue stuff in trigger sprayers they use.
    The intensity can vary by department, even, within a given store.
    Sometimes, you can’t tell for sure that an item has more or less of
    the stuff sprayed on it, until your nose clears and you get close to the
    item at home. It’s very hard to wash this fragrance product out of
    clothing, in particular, but sometimes alcohol will remove it from
    a non-porous item.

  41. For the record, Spook did not say that any Walmart does not smell. Sorry, Paul. Some are just not as bad, but believe me a clean nose will find stink almost anywhere.

    ”’ paul says:
    19 December 2018 at 19:58
    I can’t stand the smell. And they all have the same smell.

    This Wal-Mart doens’t smell. But I know what you mean. I don’t go back to those stores. ”’

  42. Anything with sliding seals that contain gas under pressure will fail sooner or later, probably sooner. I first saw these gas springs years ago, and wondered why anyone would use such a failure-prone design. They ARE impressively strong and compact for their function, but there are better ways to hold up a lid! Turns out I was a little pessimistic, as I have yet to replace any, and the oldest I have are 21 years old. They are showing a little weakness, but still function down to 25F, which is too cold for man or beast. Still, I would never use such a lazy way out.

    My 94 Dodge Ram 1500 has nice spiral (not helical) steel springs and linkages that work very well, but my favorites are my older cars that have torsion bars with rollers or sliders on cams. These have beautiful balance action, and most allow the lid to stay in any position absent wind. A couple have a positive notch at full open that holds the hood or trunk open against the strongest of winds – bonus points to that designer. Nice, but not seen any more.

    I have had way more leaks with gas charged shock absorbers. All of the ones I have on cars leak flat in under ten years, and most are not designed to be recharged. They still work, but without gas pressure, the oil can aerate and then the damping is reduced. One of my dirt bikes has an external tank, with a provision to recharge, and I need to get a 200-250 psi nitrogen source before I get that beast running again. I suppose the fancy shocks on off road buggies and four wheelers, with their external tanks, are designed to be recharged, but no experience.

    Never needed a broomstick to hold any lid up, not counting the built in props, of course. Those remind me of cheap Urpeen cars. At least they don’t leak 🙂

  43. They’re all chasing Disney with this, as Disney has been doing it for a lllloooonnnnngggg time. The general stores in the campground still smell exactly like they did in the 70s and 80s. They have intentional smells associated with different areas and properties too. Although I always will associate the smell of hot rubber with their dark rides…

    I always associate jet fuel smell with Disney. When they first opened the Florida resorts, in order to force Orlando to do something about airport upgrades, Disney ran “microjet” service to a landing strip east of the parking lot from various airports around the state. The service didn’t last beyond a couple of years, but the smell made an impression.

    The landing strip is still there but decommissioned due to the proximity to the monorail to Epcot.

  44. Dry hot pine woods – that’s the smell of Fort Wilderness campground. Never fails to take me back…

    n

  45. Dry hot pine woods – that’s the smell of Fort Wilderness campground. Never fails to take me back…

    Fort Wilderness is pretty much what the terrain looked like prior to Disney.

    You don’t want pine trees like that if you are a homeowner in FL.

  46. You don’t want pine trees like that if you are a homeowner in FL.

    Fire ? Flood area ? Boring beetles ?

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