Wed. April 17, 2019 – didn’t sleep well

71F? and damp. Maybe. I gotta figure out what is going on with my weather station. How am I going to pretend I’m in control when I don’t even know how hot it is?

I can’t control the puns though, and can’t resist one of my own. The DWI presentation was sobering.

It’s also the only crime where you are actually going to be tried in court by a ‘jury of your peers.’ Practically every adult in the US has made a poor decision and driven when they shouldn’t. Subsequently, people get off that objectively shouldn’t.

This is an especially big problem in TX and in Houston, and I’m mentioning it here because it’s very much a “don’t be there” dangerous situation. You can decrease your chances of injury or death by simply “not being there”. Don’t do it. On the flip side, as the officer pointed out, DUI/DWI deaths happen at all hours of the day or night, but some times are worse than others. Avoid those times, avoid those places.

Over one half week in the last month, with 4 major events in town at the same time, there were about 300 DWI crashes with 19 fatalities JUST IN HOUSTON. Those are entirely preventable deaths.

Busy day, in and out all day, although if it rains, who knows….

n

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30 Responses to Wed. April 17, 2019 – didn’t sleep well

  1. Greg Norton says:

    It’s also the only crime where you are actually going to be tried in court by a ‘jury of your peers.’ Practically every adult in the US has made a poor decision and driven when they shouldn’t. Subsequently, people get off that objectively shouldn’t.

    The problem with the DWI is that the standards for intoxication keep getting lower, and, IMHO, MADD was the proverbial “camel’s nose under the edge of the tent” which, 30 years later, has led us to the edge of the Feds making all of the cars automated under a central authority via executive branch regulation without a single Congressman risking reelection because he/she voted for legislation.

    Also, when we left WA State, the pinchfaces had pushed DWI laws to the point where some communities were enacting “driving while distracted” ordinances in the name of safety. It was all up to the officer’s discretion as to whether you were distracted and gave cities wide jurisdiction over anything you did behind the wheel, even with the motor off.

    If, say, you lived in Vantucky proper and worked in Ridgefield (one of the first to enact DWD), under the new laws, that Big Gulp you bought in another city’s soda tax jurisdiction … or, God forbid, a city without a soda tax … and drove into town sitting in your vehicle’s cup holder could be considered a huge distraction by the cops. Don’t think it will happen? Wait.

  2. Nick Flandrey says:

    Oh I get you, and have the same concerns. AA sold their soul when they partnered with the state for alcohol treatment. MADD led to all sorts of anti-Constitution stuff, and I don’t think they’ve reduced the number of accidents although those numbers were hard to find last time I went looking.

    Statists are always looking for ways to increase the power of the state, and progs are always trying to control others’ behavior to “better them.”

    The push for “safety” is an enabler for both of those.

    The problem lies where your actions impact me, and that is always the heart of American law. YOU are free to go to hell in your own handbasket, but not to take ME with you. The balance between individual rights and the rights of other not to be hurt by someone else has been moving toward the collective for some time.

    WRT intoxication, the root problem is that after it starts, you can’t make reasoned decisions because you are impaired. This is why TX prosecutes DWI deaths as manslaughter- intent is nearly impossible to prove when the person’s ability to intentionally act is impaired.

    Our presenter is currently working a case with a 72 year old male, NINE previous DWI arrests. FWIW, they assume ~60 instances of DWI for every time you get caught. He gets repeat offenders all the time, people who RECOGNIZE HIM. Every time one of those people drives they risk the lives of innocents around them, and in the car with them. (TX DWI is a misdemeanor, if you have your kids in the car it becomes felony child endangerment.) There has to be a way to balance the right of the individual against the right of society. I don’t know where that line is, but if your conduct is so bad you get popped NINE times, but can still drive, something is wrong.

    n

  3. Greg Norton says:

    Statists are always looking for ways to increase the power of the state, and progs are always trying to control others’ behavior to “better them.”

    The push for “safety” is an enabler for both of those.

    Austin PD brought traffic to a standstill on SB I35 this morning by aggressively ticketing drivers, motorcycle cops every 100-200 yards the whole drive down from Round Rock. Safety first!

    My guess is that they were enforcing the city’s asinine “no touchy handheld electronics” ordnance, $500 fine, cop’s word vs. yours. Most of the cars I saw pulled over were out-of-state.

    Be aware that San Marcos, not wanting to miss out on the racket (and I mean that in the full legal sense of the word) passed a similar law to milk the clueless on 35.

  4. dkreck says:

    I think the cell phone laws have gotten out of hand, all about mo money. Of course I use my hands free or pull over to use mine(really). Whenever I come across someone driving too slow or wandering all over the lane, I’ll notice when I pass them they’re looking at their lap. Contemplating their navel I’m sure.

  5. Greg Norton says:

    I think the cell phone laws have gotten out of hand, all about mo money. Of course I use my hands free or pull over to use mine(really). Whenever I come across someone driving too slow or wandering all over the lane, I’ll notice when I pass them they’re looking at their lap. Contemplating their navel I’m sure.

    Phones/texting are definitely a problem, but the Austin and San Marcos laws go beyond Texas state law by banning touching *any* handheld electronic device while the vehicle is in motion. The penalty, $500, is steeper than any other offense on the books save for repeat DUI arrests.

    Looking at the lap? Might be streaming video.

  6. JimL says:

    …banning touching *any* handheld electronic device while the vehicle is in motion.

    So if it’s in a holder it’s okay? If it’s not okay, what about navigation devices? What about the car stereo? What about wrist-mounted, such as a wristwatch?

    I don’t like distractions. I’ve hung up on people when traffic got bad and I was using the hands-free. My wife (the only one whose opinion matters to me) understands. “Gotta go”. Click. She knows I’ll call back when it’s safe.

  7. nick flandrey says:

    And iirc no exemption for hand held radio use (ie, business, ham, or CB) and a hasty amendment to exempt cops… which shows the hasty and poorly thought out nature of the law.

    n

  8. Greg Norton says:

    And iirc no exemption for hand held radio use (ie, business, ham, or CB) and a hasty amendment to exempt cops… which shows the hasty and poorly thought out nature of the law.

    The law in Austin was part of a knee-jerk reaction by law enforcement in Texas to the Cannonball Run record going below 30 hours in 2013 with the help of one of the lesser map apps to certify the time and provide coordination between the team and their scout drivers.

    APD really has a bug about Waze reporting speed traps too, a factor in settting the fine at $500.

  9. lynn says:

    “Astros Pitcher Expertly Dodges Ball with a Move Many Are Comparing to The Matrix — Watch”
    https://people.com/sports/astros-pitcher-collin-mchugh-dodges-ball-video/

    Maybe, maybe we are living in a simulation.

  10. lynn says:

    My guess is that they were enforcing the city’s asinine “no touchy handheld electronics” ordnance, $500 fine, cop’s word vs. yours. Most of the cars I saw pulled over were out-of-state.

    I thought that The Great State of Texas set the final word on electronic device usage while driving. I use mine for maps all the time while driving.

    No, I haven’t hit the freeway guardrails yet. Why do you ask ?

  11. dkreck says:

    Looking at the lap? Might be streaming video.

    and driving with one hand. Either texting or streaming p0rn.

  12. lynn says:

    “Apple and Qualcomm settle patent fight after one day in court”
    https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2019/04/qualcomm-shares-up-20-percent-after-apple-agrees-to-settlement/

    “The companies say they will dismiss all pending litigation worldwide.”

    Funny, I missed the crashing noise of these two behemoths last night when they came together.

  13. lynn says:

    “SpaceX Falcon Heavy center core stuck the landing before sliding into the abyss”
    https://www.slashgear.com/spacex-falcon-heavy-center-core-stuck-the-landing-before-sliding-into-the-abyss-16573612/

    “The Falcon Heavy center core successful landed on the drone barge out in the ocean, but on the trip back to Florida the barge ran into heavy seas, and the rocket fell over and slid into the ocean abyss. SpaceX said that the rough seas with swells from eight to ten feet made the booster begin to shift on the platform and it was unable to remain upright.”

    Bummer !

  14. Greg Norton says:

    Funny, I missed the crashing noise of these two behemoths last night when they came together.

    Qualcomm caved if I had to guess. They have a design center here in Austin, just down Mopac from the existing Apple campus … where the Qualcomm engineers interview on their lunch hour with the CPU design group based here.

    From the moment of the announcement, I’ve believed that the expansion of the Apple campus was, in part, pressure on Qualcomm to end the lawsuit.

  15. Greg Norton says:

    I thought that The Great State of Texas set the final word on electronic device usage while driving. I use mine for maps all the time while driving.

    I don’t venture out into the rural areas without an Android device with a cached map of Texas in OsmAnd as well as my daily carry phone with map app and a paper map of Texas. I am really careful about touching the phone on 35, however. In addition to San Marcos, I think New Braunfels decided they wanted a piece of the $500 ticket action as well.

    Cities are still free to set their own laws. The legislation intended to limit the cities antics in this area never passed the House before the special session ended in 2017.

    The bill Abbott signed about texting came out of the regular session without the prohibition on the cities deciding on additional restrictions for themselves.

    Don’t look for it this year. The Legislature is preoccupied with abortion again in this session, and the deal for the “born alive” bill Abbott wants includes backing off on the cities’ prog antics on initiatives such as paid sick leave. I doubt they will pick a fight over the blanket cell phone restrictions — the fines are way too lucrative for the cities.

    If Abbott doesn’t get a handle on San Antonio and Austin soon, he needs to be replaced in 2022 IMHO. The Republicans get wound up about abortion in part because the current leadership of Planned Parenthood is none other than the daughter of “Ma” Richards, the last Dem Governor of Texas IIRC.

  16. lynn says:

    I don’t venture out into the rural areas without an Android device with a cached map of Texas in OsmAnd as well as my daily carry phone with map app and a paper map of Texas. I am really careful about touching the phone on 35, however. In addition to San Marcos, I think New Braunfels decided they wanted a piece of the $500 ticket action as well.

    Is it a moving violation in Austin and New Braunfels so that you get points on your record ?

  17. JimL says:

    We’re troubleshooting an invoicing problem. Seems some information isn’t getting updated. Given the symptoms and samples, I found the root cause of the problem, and a short meeting led to the cause – somebody not causing the changes to go into production.

    During the meeting, I asked the man in charge to leave the others be, as I need to find all such errors, and that gives me a test case to work against. He wanted to go ahead and fix all the things he knew about and leave me to find the rest. (Anyone who has written SQL probably knows why I want that test case.)

    After I left the meeting (to attend another), he sat there and updated my test cases. I spent two hours today trying to work out the test case. My manager just told me what happened yesterday. Some days…

    Now I need to find another example. There are 5000 such test cases, and 2800 possible errors. And I have no idea how sparse the errors are.

  18. mediumwave says:

    How Should France Rebuild Notre Dame?:

    “But for some people in France, Notre Dame has also served as a deep-seated symbol of resentment, a monument to a deeply flawed institution and an idealized Christian European France that arguably never existed in the first place. “The building was so overburdened with meaning that its burning feels like an act of liberation,” says Patricio del Real, an architecture historian at Harvard University. If nothing else, the cathedral has been viewed by some as a stodgy reminder of “the old city — the embodiment of the Paris of stone and faith — just as the Eiffel Tower exemplifies the Paris of modernity, joie de vivre and change,” Michael Kimmelmann wrote for the New York Times.”

    It was only a matter of time …

  19. lynn says:

    “But for some people in France, Notre Dame has also served as a deep-seated symbol of resentment, a monument to a deeply flawed institution and an idealized Christian European France that arguably never existed in the first place. “The building was so overburdened with meaning that its burning feels like an act of liberation,” says Patricio del Real, an architecture historian at Harvard University. If nothing else, the cathedral has been viewed by some as a stodgy reminder of “the old city — the embodiment of the Paris of stone and faith — just as the Eiffel Tower exemplifies the Paris of modernity, joie de vivre and change,” Michael Kimmelmann wrote for the New York Times.”

    It was only a matter of time …

    Put two people together, they will disagree about something.

  20. lynn says:

    “EIA: US shale production to reach 8.46 million b/d in May”
    https://www.ogj.com/articles/2019/04/eia-us-shale-production-to-reach-8-46-million-b-d-in-may.html

    “The US Energy Information Administration forecasts crude oil production from seven major shale formations will climb 80,000 b/d in May to a record 8.46 million b/d, EIA said in its Monthly Drilling Productivity Report.”

    “The Permian basin of Texas and New Mexico is expected to experience the biggest boost with production forecast to climb by 42,000 b/d to 4.136 million b/d in May.”

    I remember in 1997 ??? when the President of Amoco sold their extensive Permian Basin holdings for a billion dollars stating that the field was dying.

    BTW, b/d is barrels/day. A US barrel is 42 US gallons.

  21. Greg Norton says:

    I remember in 1997 ??? when the President of Amoco sold their extensive Permian Basin holdings for a billion dollars stating that the field was dying.

    The borrowing environment to make the Permian work was completely different. When I bought my house a couple of years later, the interest rates for the 30 year mortgage were “down” to 8.5%.

    My current mortgage, from four years ago, is 3.5%.

    My wife’s car loan is 2%. Car loan!

    (Yeah, it was a special rate arranged by the Ford dealer to hide their extended warranty antics, but still!)

    The current interest rate environment to the economy is akin to a heroin high to a junkie — doing either for 10 years is going to be a huge problem.

  22. lynn says:

    I remember in 1997 ??? when the President of Amoco sold their extensive Permian Basin holdings for a billion dollars stating that the field was dying.

    The borrowing environment to make the Permian work was completely different. When I bought my house a couple of years later, the interest rates for the 30 year mortgage were “down” to 8.5%.

    Yup cheap money does help. And fracking has made all the difference in Permian Basin.

  23. SteveF says:

    the rocket fell over and slid into the ocean abyss

    What dirt did the rocket have on the Clintons?

  24. Jenny says:

    @SteveF
    What dirt did the rocket have on the Clintons?
    I really must refrain from imbibing anything when I read the comments here. Coffee. Coffee on my monitor. Your humor is wicked, sir, and I enjoy it immensely.

  25. nick flandrey says:

    Now that’s taking single engine plane crashes to new heights!

    n

  26. brad says:

    Regarding Notre Dame: “…says Patricio del Real, an architecture historian at Harvard University”

    Lots of reasons in that sentence to not care what he thinks. He’s on the wrong continent, he’s at an institution that is totally converged, and he’s an “architecture historian” as opposed to a normal human being with ordinary reasons to appreciate (or dislike) a cathedral.

    Heck, I’m not religious, but I appreciate the beauty and the incredible effort represented by such a building. I can marvel at the historical circumstances that led to its creation. That history includes some seriously negative aspects, and cathedrals serve as reminders of those as well.

    I’m not terribly interested in some pretentious twit trying to speak on my behalf.

  27. JimL says:

    I’m not terribly interested in some pretentious twit trying to speak on my behalf.

    I had a discussion with a pretentious twit who also happens to be an evangelical atheist mocking those that found the golden cross surviving the fire to be “miraculous”.

    I got a poor grade in Art History (a required elective, obviously) based in part on the fact that I find Notre Dame to be hideous. This due mostly to the ornamentation added to a rather elegant structural design. You need the arches & buttresses to get the open space. The ornamentation takes away from it. I simply don’t like it.

    All of THAT said, the building is historically significant, and the joy the faithful get from seeing the cross unharmed is not to be denigrated. There is not enough joy in the world. Let those that get joy from this small thing enjoy it.

    And all of THAT said – what happens to the building is NOT my business. I’m not French, I’m not Catholic, and I’m not paying for it. I can just hope that it’s not destroyed, as it is a significant piece of history and culture.

  28. dkreck says:

    I find the most surprising thing about Notre Dame was the lack of better alarms and no fire suppression system. Word is they did three inspections a day of the roof and attic. Good employment but poor technology.

  29. ech says:

    The Legislature is preoccupied with abortion again in this session, and the deal for the “born alive” bill Abbott wants includes backing off on the cities’ prog antics on initiatives such as paid sick leave.

    Which is a waste of time and money. Until the current spate of lawsuits get decided by the Supreme Court, any change to abortion laws will get litigated and suspended until the Supremes rule. Let the suits from other states get decided, then consider laws within that framework.

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