Tues. Dec. 10, 2019 – more to do, always more.

Warm and wet. [54F and steady drizzle]

Storm in the Gulf with up to 13 foot waves possible offshore for tonight and tomorrow. I’m glad I’m not out in gale force winds, but I can’t imagine we won’t get some kind of badness inland…

In economic news, Celadon trucking went belly up. They had some fraud issues in the past but if the industry was booming, it seems like they’d be able to recover. Instead they are winding down their global operations. 3200 drivers affected. My bet is a whole lot of that freight doesn’t get delivered on time, or at all. I see their trucks everywhere.

https://www.zerohedge.com/markets/largest-truckload-carrier-bankrupted-leaving-3000-truckers-jobless-many-stranded-highways

I’ve got a couple of pickups today, the Honda 3000 inverter gennie, and some other small things. I’ll be driving all morning. I should not have thrown out a bid on the other auction. I didn’t look at when the pickup time is, assuming it would be in a couple of days, like normal. Nope, tomorrow only. On the plus, one of the items will make a nice Christmas present for my wife.

Number one daughter is not feeling well, and neither is her dad. Sore throat and just blah for the last week with some coughing. Just enough to be a pain. I’m sure some extra sleep would be helpful. Too bad I won’t be getting any.

And with that, I better get going.

n

Author: Nick Flandrey

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

41 thoughts on “Tues. Dec. 10, 2019 – more to do, always more.”

  1. Damn insurance companies.

    I need one month insurance for my wife to cover the gap between the Obuttwadcare and Medicare, such coverage starting in February. The application was denied because the insurance company claimed my wife has a heart condition. She does not, never has.

    In September of last year it was discovered that someone in Louisiana had been treated at a hospital and claimed against my wife’s insurance coverage through United Healthcare. This other person must have a heart condition. We never got a bill from the facility. I only found out when I went online and was looking at the claims for the insurance company. It took a couple of months to get that straightened out. According to the insurance company someone keyed in an incorrect number. The name and birth date of this other individual is the same as my wife.

    But apparently that information has made it into her personal record at United Healthcare. This company I applied for temporary coverage is a subsidiary of United Healthcare (see the connection) and is using information that is incorrect to deny coverage. Their supposed correction of the false claim against my wife’s insurance issue was apparently never accomplished. Incompetent jerks.

    Why temporary coverage? The health exchange was $600.00 for one month with a subsidy of $900.00. Total premium of $1,500.00. I can get the same coverage for about $300.00 for one month through another company. Since I am going to start drawing down my retirement funds next year I would be stuck for the entire premium amount because of my income.

    I only need it for a month. I am giving serious thought to just not getting any coverage for a month and roll the dice. With a deductible of $4,000.00 and maximum out of pocket of $8,000.00 I would get stuck with a huge bill anyway for anything in that month. I just don’t want to get slammed with tens of thousands of dollars. A procedure that insurance pays $2,000.00 would cost me about $20,000.00 with this screwed up medical billing system in the U.S. Is it worth the risk?

  2. @ray, I went a long time, many years without insurance. I was younger then and healthy though.

    How often do you need healthcare? Are you there every month? Do you go months without any visits? Is you general health good?

    Accidents in a vehicle will likely be covered by your automobile medical coverage, right?

    If you had to pay out of pocket, you can negotiate a cash price. It’s not easy, but my buddy did it.

    Lots of considerations.

    My mom needed coverage during the transition and was bitching about the cost. I asked why not just skip it? Her answer was that while the insurance was $900, her monthly meds were >$1500… After the facepalm, I suggested just buying the insurance and quit bitching since she was saving $600. She never mentioned the cost to me again after that. YMMV, of course, but consider the cost of your meds as well as emergency care…..

    n


  3. How often do you need healthcare? Are you there every month? Do you go months without any visits? Is you general health good?

    It’s for my wife. She sees a doctor at least once a month for something, imagined or real. I go very infrequently. Most this year have been with the VA for claims.

    Accidents in a vehicle will likely be covered by your automobile medical coverage, right?

    Actually no if it is your fault. Generally less than $1,000 coverage for most policies. Auto insurance expect the insured to carry medical insurance.

    but consider the cost of your meds as well

    Will stock up by December 31, meds are 90 day supplies and are close to renewal.

    emergency care

    That’s the low IQ Democrat in the equation. Do I risk a possible major event with no coverage? Already told the wife if she cuts her arm off in the table saw in January she waits until February for treatment. I am sleeping in the RV for the next 5 days.

  4. The headline is different from the body of the article, and misrepresents the chief’s statement. That said, the Chief is a whiny gun grabber at heart. He’s made some good changes in the department, but he’s a politician. Never forget the narcotics crew that killed an innocent couple in their home was operating on his watch. Thousands of cases will now be reviewed, and many really bad guys will end up released because of his officer’s criminal behavior.

    Clean your own house first chief.

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7775073/Police-chief-slams-Ted-Cruz-Mitch-McConnell-caring-NRA-protecting-cops.html

    n

  5. Clean your own house first chief.

    Acevado used to be the Chief in Austin. When he left, APD promoted from within … grudgingly. Not that I’m a fan of the new Chief, but at least he pretends to have a pained look on his face at council meetings when being tasked to enforce (or not, depending on the situation) the latest SJW stupidity of Mayor Adler and the Prog city council.

    We make a point of living outside the city limits and/or Travis County.

  6. “Microsoft to end updates to Windows 7’s free AV software, Security Essentials”
    https://www.computerworld.com/article/3489036/microsoft-to-end-updates-to-windows-7s-free-av-software-security-essentials.html

    “When support for Windows 7 ends on Jan. 14, Microsoft will also stop providing new malware signatures for its home-grown Security Essentials software.”

    Ok, this is not good. Microsoft is playing hardball here.

    Senior junior programmer and I were wrestling with the source code server yesterday after a source code file corrupted on the SSD. He was wondering if we need to jump to Windows 10. Turned out to be a bad ram chip.

    I am not impressed with any of the other antivirus products.

  7. @Ray: That’s a tough one. It’s only a month. One stinkin’ month. Seems to me that you ought to be able to find some provider to cover that. OTOH, it’s actually not worth a huge amount of stress: the chances of something happening in that small of a time-frame are small. On the gripping hand, shit does happen. Hard decision…

    Either way, of course, you need to get that inaccurate information out of her file. That could, potentially, influence future medical decisions.

    Snow on the building site, so work is currently at a stand-still. However, we’re on the sunny side of the valley, so a couple days of sunshine should allow things to resume. Hoping for good weather next week. After that, it’s Christmas holidays, and little will happen until January.

    Meanwhile, the town is trying to organize a mediated meeting with the crazy neighbors. I’ve given them my dates. I expect the neighbors to suddenly not have any time, because I think they are under the impression that we care. We don’t. We could live with the half-constructed road indefinitely – and like any half-finished project, it’s ugly – and on their property.

  8. Meanwhile, the town is trying to organize a mediated meeting with the crazy neighbors. I’ve given them my dates. I expect the neighbors to suddenly not have any time, because I think they are under the impression that we care. We don’t. We could live with the half-constructed road indefinitely – and like any half-finished project, it’s ugly – and on their property.

    My main road (driveway) on my 14 acre office property continues on to the neighboring properties behind me. I have asphalted the portion of the main road that we use (two lanes of about 1,000 ft) at considerable expense. The portion that they drive on is still graveled with potholes. I’m not going to fix the road as they have not offered to pay a penny on the portion that I have fixed. I drive a truck for this and other reasons.

    They have been throwing bags of fix-a-pothole mix into the potholes on the main road on their properties. Does not work very well when the trash trucks come through. Or the FedEx / UPS heavy vans. Or etc, etc, etc.


  9. We really need to have “Loser Pays” in this country.

    Very much so.

    Horse whippings or beatings for lawyers who bring too many nuisance court cases — and this includes government prosecutors just as much as plaintiff’s attorneys — would also be in order.

  10. “How Backblaze Buys Hard Drives”
    https://www.backblaze.com/blog/how-backblaze-buys-hard-drives/

    “As the person on staff ultimately responsible for sourcing the drives our data centers need to run—some 117,658 by his last count—Ariel knows a thing or two about purchasing petabytes-worth of storage. So we asked him to share his insights on the evaluation and purchasing process here at Backblaze. While we’re buying at a slightly larger volume than some of you might be, we hope you find Ariel’s approach useful and that you’ll share your own drive purchasing philosophies in the comments below.”

    That is a lot of hard drives.

  11. “When support for Windows 7 ends on Jan. 14, Microsoft will also stop providing new malware signatures for its home-grown Security Essentials software.”

    Ok, this is not good. Microsoft is playing hardball here.

    I still believe that they are bluffing about Windows 7, but, as a Windows developer, you have to take Redmond seriously.

    My primary desktop is my only Windows 7 machine in regular use at this point, and it has a Windows 10 Pro partition ready to go dating back to the days when the upgrade was free.

  12. My primary desktop is my only Windows 7 machine in regular use at this point, and it has a Windows 10 Pro partition ready to go dating back to the days when the upgrade was free.

    Are you sure that it is Pro ? I thought all of the free windows 10 upgrades were the Home version.


  13. you need to get that inaccurate information out of her file

    Working on that process. I sent a letter back to the insurance demanding the documents they used to make the decision along with the source and contact information for where they got their data.

    There is a company called NexisLexis which aggregates all sorts of information on an individual, the individual’s property and people that have lived at the property. Driver’s records, claims records, police records, very much unsettling. I asked for my information and received 250 pages (125 double sided) of information in an undecipherable format for the most part. Some information was obvious but some was coded so that you needed a magic decoder ring to decipher.

    Everyone, everyone in the U.S., should send a letter to LexisNexis and demand their information. Overwhelm the company with demands for information. Make the company buy paper by the train load for the next 25 years. Repeat the demand every year as allowed by law. Companies like that should not be allowed to exist.

    Peace of mind. That’s what insurance is all about

    Yeh, but $300.00 piece of mind, $10.00 a day. Tough choice for just a month. With the deductible and maximum out of pocket so high on the policy it would take a major event to make it worthwhile. Wife is in good enough health that I don’t see things going south during that month. May keep her in the house, wrapped in fireproof bubble wrap.

    We really need to have “Loser Pays” in this country

    Indeed. Would stop a lot of useless lawsuits. I could sue Mr. Lynn for a couple hundred thousand dollars by tripping on his property. His cost to defend would exceed $20K, even if he won. And I walk away with a smirk on my face. Or offer to accept $10K to just walk away. Extortion comes to mind.

    I would advocate that in the case of any losing lawsuit the lawyer, and not the client, is on the hook to pay all the fees; court costs, winning party legal fees, lost wages, and say 10% of the suit amount as a trouble fee.

  14. “My primary desktop is my only Windows 7 machine in regular use at this point, and it has a Windows 10 Pro partition ready to go dating back to the days when the upgrade was free.”

    Are you sure that it is Pro ? I thought all of the free windows 10 upgrades were the Home version.

    Yes. The free upgrade was based on the license from a Windows 8 Pro upgrade I bought in 2012 for … $50 … to upgrade the Windows 7 Enterprise on the system that dates back to when I worked for Death Star Telecom.

    The upgrade wouldn’t install on top of Win 7 Enterprise, but it would install on a separate partition as long as the original system was on the disk somewhere.

    My paid copies of Windows 7 run on the MacBook Pros at the house, and those licenses are done with the end of the OS. Apple never released updated drivers for Windows 10 running on either machine, and the hardware is obsolete as far as Cupertino is concerned. Fortunately, Pop! OS runs on both with some caveats.

  15. Peace of mind. That’s what insurance is all about

    Yeh, but $300.00 piece of mind, $10.00 a day. Tough choice for just a month. With the deductible and maximum out of pocket so high on the policy it would take a major event to make it worthwhile. Wife is in good enough health that I don’t see things going south during that month. May keep her in the house, wrapped in fireproof bubble wrap.

    Ray, if it is just $300 then just pay it and move on. If she had a heart attack and required a heart transplant then the bill could be $3,000,000. The risk is just too high.

    And there are millions of people making this choice today. I firmly believe that Obolacare was built to fail. What I do not understand is why they did not just go ahead and install Medicare For All instead ? They had the votes.

    Anyway, like I said, the risk is too high. Because, you have assets that they can come after. Me too, I dare not live without health insurance for me and mine. Even though it is costing me $800/month per person.

  16. This is somewhat interesting to me. The van, a 2004 Ford Freestar, with almost 51,000 miles is due for inspection. It failed because the CHMSL is out. Which is odd. The van might be almost 16 years old but the light is LED. A quick searching shows it selling for about $85.

    Before taking the tailgate apart, how about looking to make sure the light doesn’t work? It wouldn’t be the first electrical weirdness on the van. The power locks either work or don’t un-lock. Currently, they un-lock but will not lock. A new feature! Well, no brake lights at all. Running lights and turn signals work.

    Which is peachy …. we went to Fort Worth a couple of weeks ago without brake lights?

    Reading on the FixYa kind of web sites turned up an interesting nugget. If the CHMSL and the brake lights do not work, it’s the brake switch. If only the CHMSL works, it’s the turn signal switch. The joys of a computer controlled wiring harness. Yes, I did check the fuses.

    If the cruise will not disengage, that happy feature is controlled by a pressure sensing switch screwed into the bottom of the master cylinder. A back-up plan for a bad brake switch. The pressure switch works but you have to stomp the brake pedal pretty hard.

    The solenoid that unlocks the shifter is also controlled by the brake switch. I fixed that problem a couple of years ago. The solenoid is still there electrically but it’s not locking the shifter.

    A new switch is on the way from Rock Auto for the princely sum of $12.10 including shipping and sales tax. I could go to O’Reilly’s but I’m not in enough of a rush to pay almost $10 more and have the pleasure of dealing with the doofs there.

    It’s not much of a switch. Just two wires.

  17. Why not get rid of the van? It’s my Mom’s. It’s paid for. It has Purple Heart plates. $10.50 a year VS $75+ for my Dodge P/U. The Bluebook is all of $400.

    And yeah, I do drive it. Dad got a couple of bullets for a couple of Purple Hearts and I got the beatings when he came back from ‘Nam. PSTD wasn’t a thing back then but I def had the belt marks.

  18. And there are millions of people making this choice today. I firmly believe that Obolacare was built to fail. What I do not understand is why they did not just go ahead and install Medicare For All instead ? They had the votes.

    Not after Uncle Ted assumed room temperature and Scott Brown took his seat. The plan had to pass via reconciliation, and that’s when the weird stuff started like nationalizing student loans in order to make the bill “revenue neutral”.

    Obamacare was supposed to fail by 2016. It wasn’t a foregone conclusion that Obama would win reelection after the 2010 election, but the Progs knew that a squishy Republican like Jeb! or Mittens wouldn’t have the stones or the political capital for repeal if the GOP emerged victorious in 2012.

    Mittens couldn’t even make an empty promise to repeal.

  19. This is somewhat interesting to me. The van, a 2004 Ford Freestar, with almost 51,000 miles is due for inspection. It failed because the CHMSL is out.

    “CHMSL stands for the center high-mounted stop lamp. In a vehicle, the CHMSL is mounted above the left and right brake lights (also called stop lamps).”

    We have turned English into an acronym dictionary.

  20. Mittens couldn’t even make an empty promise to repeal.

    Mittens is a RINO to the max. Watch, he is going to vote to impeach Trump in January.

    I also expect him to “vote his conscience” and vote against Trump’s Ginsburg replacement.

  21. I also expect him to “vote his conscience” and vote against Trump’s Ginsburg replacement.

    Depends on the Payola involved. If it is a political favor to Pence involving the Barrett woman, Mittens would have a hard time justifying a ‘no’ vote there.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Ginsberg survives through the election.


  22. Read this and you will understand why car manufacturers suck:

    Interesting. Before I read it I figured the reason would boil down to “Congress”.

  23. I had to replace the brake switch in my older pickup. They blamed me for riding the brake. Meh. Easy fix and cheap.

    n

    Spent all day running around. It got COLD up in Conroe, 47F. Drizzle all day too.

    Was told the Honda 3000 was running and the other small honda has a leak in the gas tank. I had no plans for the small one anyway, other than sell it.

    n

  24. Got my Comcast / Xfinity modem setup and running today. But I could not get the Ubiquiti wifi to work. Turns out that I have to program the Ubiquiti wifi with my laptop before it starts working. Grrr.

    So I have to grab my laptop with an ethernet plug and take it to the new used house. This sounds like a Thursday job.

  25. Interesting. Before I read it I figured the reason would boil down to “Congress”.

    Congress lets the EPA and NHTSA set the rules.

    We’re long past the point where the Legislative branch should have stepped in about CAFE.

  26. Going though today’s mail….. Yay! Mom’s getting a raise on her SS. A whole $2 a month.

    The nursing home can buy extra cookies. Maybe.

  27. Turns out there are some Hollyweirdos who don’t suck.

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7777031/Actor-Gary-Sinise-sends-1-000-children-fallen-servicemen-Disney-World-Snowball-Express.html

    More about the UPS shootings

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7777965/At-18-police-officers-fired-guns-UPS-hijacking-shootout.html

    And WTH?

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7777555/Two-men-open-fire-cops-bodega-Jersey-City-sending-nearby-school-lockdown.html

    Cali is circling the drain….

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7778029/New-lawsuit-challenges-SAT-ACT-requirements-UC-schools.html

    There are some nice slight of hand tricks in the text of the article, especially at the end.

    Family income correlates pretty well with intelligence and drive, at least in the first and second generations.

    n

  28. Cali is circling the drain….

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7778029/New-lawsuit-challenges-SAT-ACT-requirements-UC-schools.html

    There are some nice slight of hand tricks in the text of the article, especially at the end.

    Family income correlates pretty well with intelligence and drive, at least in the first and second generations.

    I thought the best correlation for college success was if mom or dad (and especially both) could act in tv or movies ?

  29. Mom’s getting a raise on her SS. A whole $2 a month.

    Mine is going up $31.00 a month. Actual SS went up more but so did the Medicare premiums. The $31.00 is the net increase. VA went up $4.43, hardly enough for Chick-fil-a sandwich.

    I had to replace the brake switch in my older pickup

    I had a Honda Accord sedan, 1979. Really liked that vehicle. One day going to work I noticed people were honking at me. When I got to work I checked and found the brake lights were on. Took the car to Firestone a block away, paid them $25.00 to adjust the brake switch. Needed to do that to get home safely. Two days later lights were back on. I crawled under the dash and found the problem. A bushing on the brake pedal that is in contact with the brake light switch was worn. The brake pedal when raised depressed the switch keeping the lights off (a normally closed switch). Ordered a new pad from Honda for $0.89 and installed the pad.

    I took the car back to Firestone and showed them the issue. I asked for my $25.00 back as they had not properly diagnosed and fixed the problem. They said no, they had fixed the issue. I showed them the old pad and where it was located. Still refused to give me my money back offering instead to redo the repair. I asked what repair as I had fixed it myself and there was nothing to fix. Said that was all they could offer. I said fine. Told everyone at work and in the building I could about their lousy service. I don’t know if it had an effect, but I felt better.

  30. Turns out there are some Hollyweirdos who don’t suck.

    Gary Sinise is well known to be “out” as not being Prog, but he’s paid a career price.

  31. “I thought the best correlation for college success was if mom or dad (and especially both) could act in tv or movies ? ”

    Ah grasshopper, much like the last line in the article, you are confusing ACCESS with SUCCESS. In the case of the article, they could increase the unqualified admissions 100 fold, and it wouldn’t result in more successes. HALF of current college students fail to graduate with a degree in 5 years. That’s the half that shouldn’t be there in the first place….

    n

  32. Paul, you DID check that switch before ordering the new one… didn’t you? 😉
    I’m sure I don’t have to preach diagnosis and verification to the folks here, do I?

    Cars were having trouble with brake and other switches long before being festooned with computers. My 68 Mustang has the weirdest brake switch design I have seen. It relies (not very reliably) on the slop between the pedal arm and the master cylinder or brake booster rod. Or… maybe the designers intended the slight angular rotation between same to operate the switch, using a D shaped hole. Either way, it sometimes fails with the lights not working, or less commonly, staying ON. The latter can run the battery down. Meh. Mine did this once, and I fixed it. Then, when I added a power booster, I had to replace the switch, and it once again got fussy. I fixed it with a shim. It works now, but next time it acts up (guaranteed) I will modify it to a more conventional design. That will require adding a bracket, which was probably the ten cent saving in the first place. When these cars were more common, I would occasionally see the brake lights blinking ON or OFF when they shouldn’t. Wondered why, until my experience.

    Oh, VW bugs had a hydraulic switch that screwed into the master cylinder. Nice idea that kept the pedal area free from a switch and maybe linkage. Trouble was, sometimes they leaked. The MC was under the car, buried securely from flying debris. That also make leaks harder to detect, because the fluid wouldn’t drip to the ground. Also, the MC was of the single type. You guessed it: eventually the fluid could run out and the brakes could fail, leaving only the e-brake for a leisurely stop. Only careful checking of the remote reservoir (inside the trunk and readily visible) would reveal a problem: there was no low fluid warning light. I always wondered how common brake failures were, because most folks wouldn’t know to watch the fluid level until too late. Oh well, those cars were light and had huge crush zones in a frontal collision. They were also cheap to replace. Still have a soft spot in my head for them; owned four, loved all. Can’t say I would never own one again. There is this friend who has several… 🙂

  33. @jimB, check out Mustie1 on youtube, especially his older vids. Big VW fan, loves the vans and pickups.

    Genuine and likeable guy too.

    n


  34. Gary Sinise is well known to be “out” as not being Prog, but he’s paid a career price.

    When Sinise started spending more time supporting Vets and their families (Lt. Dan Band), Hollyweird started to Black List him. The world is a better place with Gary. FU Hollyweird.

  35. JimB, no testing. I stuck my arm up there and for a $12 switch, I’m going to do the wok once and replace.

    Sometimes touching the brakes disengages the cruise. Sometimes you have to push the pedal hard enough to feel the brakes engage. Ok, the backup system via a pressure switch on the master cylinder works.

    Someday I’ll figure out the locks. I think it’s a bad ground. Somewhere.

  36. Well wriitten blog, I Loved this post, i read you blog fairly often and you are always coming out with some great stuff. i shared this on my facebook and my followers loved it!
    Keep the good Work

Comments are closed.