Tues. Aug. 4, 2020 – ay, que loco!

Hot and humid, chance of rain.

Yesterday did get hot.  106F in the driveway.  Pretty humid too, but mercifully overcast for much of the day.

My back pain is funny.  I can walk ok most of the time.   I can sit ok almost always.  Transitions between the two are like being crippled.  Burning pain, electric shocks, “twang” in my hip.  All kinds of fun for a while, then the transition is complete and I feel ok.   Didn’t get to the chiropractor.  I called to see if there were any special requirements (like  an appointment) but they weren’t answering the phone and never called back.  Their web page was less than helpful.  I will try them again later today.  I need to be headed in the right direction with this.

Since I was feeling ok, I picked up the dog bombs, and the unusable pecans, then cut the grass.  Back yard is in shade most of the afternoon, so it was tolerable.  Lawn guys did the front this week.  They cut, blow, trim, and collect the leaves every other week, I just mow every other week.  Although, since March I’ve kept them out of the driveway and the back yard and I do those myself.  I use the string trimmer every other week in the back.

For some reason, I feel like I need to get the extra water tanks sorted.  I’ve got two back there that are not currently full.  They need to be cleaned and then filled.  Since they’re on carts with wheels, it’s still possible to move them when mostly full.  My plan was to use then for bathing and washing water if it came to that.  Don’t know why I’ve got the feeling to get them in place and filled, or why I was thinking about moving my other two 100L tanks into place in the garage.   I’ve learned though that I shouldn’t ignore that little voice when it pipes up.

Did a couple of little things in the garage.   Dug out an ebay item that someone wanted to buy.  I was pretty sure I knew where it was, and it was there.  Hooray.  Maybe I’ll make $8 on it.  It’s been listed for a year?  Maybe more.    Strange which little items have sold in the last months, all really long term listings.   That’s why I’m sending bins full of stuff to the local auctions.  Stuff is just not moving.  Admittedly, I’ve been slack on new listings, and ebay boosts you if you do new listings.

Dinner was fresh turkey legs baked, with canned green bean and mushroom soup casserole,  mashed potatoes with saute’d onion, garlic, and bacon crumbles, pillsbury crescent rolls,  and mango cobbler for dessert.  The rolls were from a tube and were 9 months past BB.  Except for the outermost layer, they were fine…  the crunchy onion for the casserole topping was a year past BB and was fine (foil pouch).  The mango was from a jar from Costco, past BB, too soft to eat on a plate but great in the cobbler.

I’ve got to do an auction pickup today or tomorrow.  I bought 3 cases of Charmin TP, and a couple of other things.  Paid about double what I would have on sale just a few months ago, but in line with current Costco pricing- when they have it.  Scott commercial TP, the thin shiny stuff, sells for about 50c a roll, so Charmin at $1.50 isn’t that unreasonable, just more than I’d like.  And that is the case for the future too, until serious deflation sets in.  We’ll be paying more than we’d like, for less than we’d like.  I don’t see “waiting for it to come back down” to be a wise choice.  While there is more available now, it’s still sketchy and not cheap.  If it does come back, I’ll have spent more than I’d like but can buy more cheaper later.  If it doesn’t ever really come back for some time, then I’ll be glad to have paid the price to restock now.  (for any value of ‘it’…)

I’ve also been buying multiples where I would normally buy only a couple if they were on sale… like coffee filters, or iced tea mix.  Easier to buy a case when it’s shipping anyway.  Better to have it than not.

New food and other supplies will go back to my secondary location.  I don’t think we’ll have serious movement restrictions any time soon, and we’ll have some warning beforehand, if they are reinstated.

As schools in some parts of the country are starting back, right away they’re seeing cases.  Students in class, student athletes, and staffers too.  In person learning is going to be a clusterflock.  There’ll be a LOT of back and forth, which will be pretty disruptive.  We’ll be sitting that mess out.


If you missed it, there was an announcement that Jerry Pournelle’s wife Roberta passed away.  The old guard is leaving the field…  may they find peace.


Historically, the world doesn’t fight the next big war until the generation that fought the last one has mostly passed on.  Guess what’s coming.  Famine, war, plague and pestilence.  Keep stacking.

nick

 

 

Author: Nick Flandrey

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

110 thoughts on “Tues. Aug. 4, 2020 – ay, que loco!”

  1. @Nick
    USD1.50 per TP roll?? Wow. My choice in UK is Aldi 3-ply (better than UK Charmin in my opinion) retailing at approx 45cents (converted from 34pence at rate of 1.3) per roll. Must be a business opportunity?? And no price increase since Covid.


  2. Good memories of my dad (uncle) reading

    Unless you’re from Alabama, it sounds like your memory isn’t so good…


  3. Distance leaning does not work near as well as classroom learning.

    That’s my experience, based on the last three months of the previous school year. I can’t fault the teachers (most of them, anyway) at my daughter’s school, as I was in listening distance almost the entire time that my daughter was doing her remote schoolwork. Setting aside the science, art, and music classes, which can’t be fully conducted remotely, I don’t know how much of the problem was inherent limitations of remote learning, how much was the inherent difficulty of teaching twelve-year-olds, and how much resulted from many of the kids’ parents sticking the kids in front of the computer or tablet and leaving them to “learn” without in-person supervision.

    I’m horrified by the glib and facile APPEARANCE of learning in our school.

    Yep.

    As the saying goes, public schooling is so bad that any amateur can do better.

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  4. Historically, the world doesn’t fight the next big war until the generation that fought the last one has mostly passed on.

    nope
    WWI – Boers/China/etc
    WWII – WWI

    The only lapse period is between 1815 and WWI, before that a lot, in Europe is worst

  5. Jerry Pournelle refined my thinking on freedom in a positive way, and Roberta did great work with kids. I miss them both despite never having met them.

  6. Re schools. I think 3rd grade is the UK equivalent of (then) P5. In P5 we were expected to have memorized multiplication tables up to 12. The teacher (NOT “Educator”) would randomly ask “Mark, what’s 7 times 6?” and you were expected to stand up and answer.

    I’m pretty sure the same was true in P4 also – equivalent of 2nd grade.

    We could do it back then.

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  7. Have you thought about home schooling your daughters ? You can buy the prep kits and books, not a big deal.

    HS is fought tooth and nail by the ProgLibTurds to keep indoctrination going. Now it is to keep PLT teachers at home, doing little, and getting full pay. I want that gig! My Twins just registered for classes at UNLV, all but one distance learning, one class is a social distancing capable auditorium. A price increase of $6/credit. Plus all the SJW fees, gym fee, etc. For stuff they can’t even use.

    As Mr. Ray says: “University is just a money making institution.”

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  8. I’ve got to do an auction pickup today or tomorrow. I bought 3 cases of Charmin TP, and a couple of other things. Paid about double what I would have on sale just a few months ago, but in line with current Costco pricing- when they have it.

    I’ve seen Charmin at our local Sam’s on most of our recent runs, and the paper goods aisle at the local HEB is full. I figured the whole TP thing had blown over.

    Someone is definitely playing arbitrage long games with cleaning fluids around us, but I imagine that will change when evictions and foreclosures start rolling again.

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  9. As Mr. Ray says: “University is just a money making institution.”

    I revise my statement. “University is just a money making scam”.

    MTSU stole money from my son. Each semester he was forced to put $250.00 on a “Raider’s Bucks” card that could be used in cafeteria, laundromat, book store, etc. At the end of each semester any money left on the card was kept by the university. Taking money, in exchange for nothing, with threat of harm (thrown out of the university) is stealing.

    One class, mandatory, was being taught by a person where English was their third or fourth language. Almost all of the students went to the administration asking for another teacher. Nope. Then they decided to drop the class and ask for a refund. Nope. They could drop, but no money back. Last my son checked there were only two people left in the class yet MTSU got several hundred dollars from each student, for a class they could not understand the instructor, for a class that was mandatory, in some liberal philosophy crap.

    I loathe the administration at MTSU. Mostly lazy incompetent cretins.

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  10. One class, mandatory, was being taught by a person where English was their third or fourth language. Almost all of the students went to the administration asking for another teacher. Nope. Then they decided to drop the class and ask for a refund. Nope. They could drop, but no money back. Last my son checked there were only two people left in the class yet MTSU got several hundred dollars from each student, for a class they could not understand the instructor, for a class that was mandatory, in some liberal philosophy crap.

    Mid-tier state school? You don’t even *want* to know what is going on in the CS department Masters program.

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  11. IM(not so)HO, WRT learning, schools & teachers can only add between 0 and 10%; the family and home life are responsible for the rest.

  12. @Nick: I sympathize.

    I tweaked my back doing some maintenance work on the swamp cooler yesterday. My back doesn’t like bending backwards – on top of some cinderblock wall work late last week it was too much I suppose.

    Barely ambulatory, with ibuprofen.

    Been here before, it sucks, but it will pass…

  13. I spoke with my daughter’s middle school principal about eLearning versus classroom learning. He said he didn’t have specifics for the other schools in our district or the other districts, but at his school there were surprisingly few people choosing the eLearning option.

    I also spoke with him about the need for accountability for eLearners. Everyone got a free pass the last quarter of the 2019/2020 school year where grades and participation didn’t seem to matter. We also discussed the fairness that if my kid walks into class 2 minutes late she faces disciplinary action from her teacher, but if a kid connects to his video call 2 minutes late they all chalk it up to “technical difficulties” and dismiss it. Likewise, if my kid doesn’t have her homework complete she has a “lunch detention” and has to eat her lunch in a monitored classroom while completing her unfinished homework. How do you do that for the eLearning kid? I brought up several scenarios where eLearners would get a free pass but classroom students would be penalized. He agreed with me and said eLearning would be a lot more disciplined and accountable going forward. We shall see.

    There’s a lot of behavior out their that defies logic. Parents that don’t want their kids in the classroom, but their kids are actively participating in team sports and attending church services every Sunday. Apparently, there’s three variants of COVID-19. The academic variant is by far the most contagious and deadly. The athletic and religious variants are mostly harmless.

  14. IM(not so)HO, WRT learning, schools & teachers can only add between 0 and 10%; the family and home life are responsible for the rest.

    +1

    In this age of consumerism, why don’t more people choose colleges on the basis of performance/price? Surely there must still be some good institutions.

  15. Teachers being paid to not work: we need to fix that. Another union caused problem. I guess restaurant workers don’t have such effective unions. Our former host would definitely have something to say about this.

    We don’t have kids, so missed out on the school thing. Anything I know is long obsolete. However, since schools are so bad, this seems a business opportunity. I do realize there is a monopoly, but some enterprising business should try to penetrate this. An affordable, excellent school could quickly gain momentum. Anyone?

    Yes, our taxes support this mess, and it would be great to fix that, but look at what charter schools have done in some locations. Hated, I know.

  16. Uni and college have little to do with knowledge and capability learned but is mostly about the paper issued and the doors it opens. Yes it’s about money.

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  17. Teachers being paid to not work: we need to fix that. Another union caused problem. I guess restaurant workers don’t have such effective unions. Our former host would definitely have something to say about this.

    The teachers want to continue being paid not to work for at least the next year, and, at the same time, the trades unions want capital spending on the empty buildings to not only continue but increase, hence all the sudden concern about school HVAC systems and the virus.

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  18. Makes sense, CowboySlim. A public school diploma is just a participation ribbon.

  19. The district has said that remote learning students will have to be physically present in front of their ‘computing device’ for the entire school day. That right there negates the best part of remote learning for any good or motivated student.

    Grades and testing will matter this year too.

    LOTS of wailing about the teachers getting sick from the little disease bags. And they know they will, because that is SOP anyway. As I pointed out to my wife the other night, grocery store cashiers have to work, come in contact with far more people than the class full of kids, and get far less compensation. No gnashing of teeth for checkout clerks. She had a negative knee jerk reaction, but then gave it some thought.

    Also lots of wailing that teachers will have to have their kids in school because they are required to be in school. Sorry, so sad. The district was never intended to provide all the benefits school staff get, and their babysitting requirements are not my concern. No one cares what Abdulla at the Quik E Mart has to do with his kids when he goes to work so why should I care when Salina has to send her kids to school so she is free to teach?

    n

  20. From Facecrack:

    Why Did The Chicken Cross The Road?

    DONALD TRUMP: I’ve been told by my many sources, good sources – they’re very good sources – that the chicken crossed the road. All the Fake News wants to do is write nasty things about the road, but it’s a really good road. It’s a beautiful road. Everyone knows how beautiful it is.

    JOE BIDEN: Why did the chicken do the…thing in the…you know the rest.

    SARAH PALIN: The chicken crossed the road because, gosh-darn it, he’s a maverick!

    BARACK OBAMA: Let me be perfectly clear, if the chickens like their eggs they can keep their eggs. No chicken will be required to cross the road to surrender her eggs. Period.

    AOC: Chickens should not be forced to lay eggs! This is because of corporate greed! Eggs should be able to lay themselves.

    HILLARY CLINTON: What difference at this point does it make why the chicken crossed the road.

    GEORGE W. BUSH: We don’t really care why the chicken crossed the road. We just want to know if the chicken is on our side of the road or not. The chicken is either with us or against us. There is no middle ground here.

    DICK CHENEY: Where’s my gun?

    BILL CLINTON: I did not cross the road with that chicken.

    AL GORE: I invented the chicken.

    JOHN KERRY: Although I voted to let the chicken cross the road, I am now against it! It was the wrong road to cross, and I was misled about the chicken’s intentions. I am not for it now, and will remain against it.

    AL SHARPTON: Why are all the chickens white?

    DR. PHIL: The problem we have here is that this chicken won’t realize that he must first deal with the problem on this side of the road before it goes after the problem on the other side of the road. What we need to do is help him realize how stupid he is acting by not taking on his current problems before adding any new problems.

    ANDERSON COOPER: We have reason to believe there is a chicken, but we have not yet been allowed to have access to the other side of the road.

    NANCY GRACE: That chicken crossed the road because he’s guilty! You can see it in his eyes and the way he walks.

    PAT BUCHANAN: To steal the job of a decent, hardworking American.

    DR SEUSS: Did the chicken cross the road? Did he cross it with a toad? Yes, the chicken crossed the road, but why it crossed I’ve not been told.

    ERNEST HEMINGWAY: To die in the rain, alone.

    GRANDPA: In my day we didn’t ask why the chicken crossed the road. Somebody told us the chicken crossed the road, and that was good enough for us.

    ARISTOTLE: It is the nature of chickens to cross the road.

    ALBERT EINSTEIN: Did the chicken really cross the road, or did the road move beneath the chicken?

    COLONEL SANDERS: Did I miss one?

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  21. @greg, yes, there is something wrong with that guy.

    “at a time where connected vehicles and EVs are becoming the norm in the industry”

    –seriously? How disconnected from reality do you have to be to make a statement like that? “Sales of plug-in passenger cars achieved a 2.5% market share of new car sales in 2019”–from wikilies Even if sales were double that, it would hardly be “the norm”.

    4 CEOs in 12 years might be a lot. The author certainly thinks so. I’m guessing that lots of other companies had similar turnover. I also am pretty sure that a LOT of shareholder money ended up in their pockets as they rotated thru…

    n

  22. And two more refineries in the USA (NM and CA) bite the dust. “Marathon Petroleum to permanently close two oil refineries”
    https://www.hydrocarbonprocessing.com/news/2020/08/marathon-petroleum-to-permanently-close-two-oil-refineries

    They are small refineries, only 161,000 bpd and 27,000 bpd. As they are probably future Superfund sites, they are being converted to tank farms. And they are connected by pipelines to their major customers so the conversion to tank farms is a natural conversion.

    Still, more infrastructure changes in the fossil fuels world as we change over to natural gas and solar power. My refinery count for the USA is about 95 now. It was 230 two ? three ? four ? decades ago.

  23. But Nick! Salina has a college degree. A Master’s Degree in Education! That proves she’s smarter and better than Abdulla and you, and knows better!

    (Quick note for the three people on Earth who don’t catch that sarcasm: the School of Education of any university is not the den of the best and brightest, on either side of the podium. Possession of a B.Ed., a M.Ed., or even a D.Ed. indicates nothing about one’s knowledge or ability in any subject, specifically including the ability to teach. Education degrees are participation awards, showing that someone has obtained the funding necessary to obtain entrance and is able to parrot back what the professor believes.)

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  24. Lynn, part of “Grandpa’s” response is missing: And it was uphill both ways! With wolves chasing the chicken as it crossed!


  25. Possession of a B.Ed., a M.Ed., or even a D.Ed. indicates nothing about one’s knowledge or ability in any subject, specifically including the ability to teach.

    Back in my day in the UK, teachers wrote their credentials as “BSc (Maths), Dip.Ed.”. Maths degree first, diploma in education second. They thought back then that actually having a degree in the subject you teach was important.

    Modern educators know better, of course.

  26. Note the move away from the words “teacher” and “student”.

    Teacher is an active word describing a relationship, implying that there is a change in the target of the teaching…

    Lecturer, educator, those only describe the one person, and not a relationship.

    Student has become ‘learner’ which only encompasses the person ‘learning’. You can learn from anything and anyone. It doesn’t describe a relationship.

    n

  27. Today is the WA State Primary Election. There are 37 people, and goodspaceguy, vying for Goobernor. sInslee must be real proud of having a record number of opponents. Of course, this is only going to lead to confusion and his probable re-election.

    What does it all matter?

    The country is slowly dividing and dying. The people who are selling a bottle of SoftSoap for $36.00 need to be called out for what they really are, black marketers (and don’t pull any of the racial crap on me), and they need to be flogged in the town square then drawn and quartered. There is too much that is being diverted from the normal supply chains.

    There is a real distinction between people stockpiling for their own and family use and those who manage to monopolize a market and then price gouge.

    I just saw an article with a quote from the CEO of Clorox that they will not be able to meet the demand for most of their products until 2021.
    What the heck is going on here?
    Things are not right.

  28. Today is the WA State Primary Election. There are 37 people, and goodspaceguy, vying for Goobernor. sInslee must be real proud of having a record number of opponents. Of course, this is only going to lead to confusion and his probable re-election.

    Costco’s chore boy. On the plus side it keeps a check on Amazon until they get HQ2 rocking and rolling outside DC.

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  29. @dadcooks,

    I noticed this observation from Cmdr Zero–

    Took a while, but the freezer is now full of lotsa animal protein. Did I buy it because I think there’s going to be some sort of chicken shortage? Heck no..how does the world run out of chickens??? No, this is simply because while I believe there’s always going to be chicken to buy I don’t believe I’ll always have money to buy it. Never know what the future holds, and only an idiot would assume that they’ll always have a job and always have money.

    I’ll modify it slightly to say that I don’t believe I’ll always have ENOUGH money to buy it.

    n

  30. @greg, I’ve been meaning to ask, where are you seeing the soap arbitrage?

    All the soap sellers here are selling stolen goods, not location or time arbitraged…

    n

  31. @greg, I’ve been meaning to ask, where are you seeing the soap arbitrage?

    All the soap sellers here are selling stolen goods, not location or time arbitraged…

    The cleaning products disappear from the local store shelves as soon as stock arrives at HEB, particularly Formula 409 variants. My wife sees bottles on Amazon, but not in the kind of quantity that the empty store shelves would imply.

    Someone around here is stockpiling a lot of cleaning fluids. A lot of houses in the neighborhoods have big bonus rooms which serve as makeshift warehouses for the people earning a living from Austin’s picker culture.

  32. I almost knocked over a Little Old Lady to get a *small* bottle of Pine-Sol at HEB. No big bottles anywhere. Unobtainium.

  33. The country is slowly dividing and dying. The people who are selling a bottle of SoftSoap for $36.00 need to be called out for what they really are, black marketers (and don’t pull any of the racial crap on me), and they need to be flogged in the town square then drawn and quartered. There is too much that is being diverted from the normal supply chains.

    I bought two 8 oz bottle of Aloe Soft Soap at HEB last Sunday night for $0.98 each. Plus some sales tax for the governor I bet. Two was the limit or else I would have bought the entire row for my business.

  34. I’ve got to do an auction pickup today or tomorrow. I bought 3 cases of Charmin TP, and a couple of other things. Paid about double what I would have on sale just a few months ago, but in line with current Costco pricing- when they have it. Scott commercial TP, the thin shiny stuff, sells for about 50c a roll, so Charmin at $1.50 isn’t that unreasonable, just more than I’d like. And that is the case for the future too, until serious deflation sets in.

    I think that is the cost for the super sized Charmin soft rolls at HEB. Sam’s Club has not had any Charmin since the second wave started back at the end of June. Nope, a little cheaper at six super sized for $7.18. I think that they also have a 24 super sized rolls for $22 occasionally.
    https://www.heb.com/product-detail/charmin-ultra-soft-toilet-paper/713380

  35. I’m horrified by the glib and facile APPEARANCE of learning in our school.

    Yep.

    As the saying goes, public schooling is so bad that any amateur can do better.

    Yeah, my youngest brother taught his son to be an alcoholic drunkard also.

  36. “Confirmed: Garmin received decryptor for WastedLocker ransomware”
    https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/news/security/confirmed-garmin-received-decryptor-for-wastedlocker-ransomware/

    “On July 23rd, 2020, Garmin suffered a worldwide outage where customers could not access their connected services, including the Garmin Connect, flyGarmin, Strava, inReach solutions.”

    “BleepingComputer was the first to confirm that they suffered a cyberattack by the WastedLocker Ransomware operators after employees shared photos of encrypted workstations, and we found a sample of the ransomware utilized in the attack.”

    “Employees later shared with BleepingComputer that the ransom demand was $10 million.”

    “After a four day outage, Garmin suddenly announced that they were starting to restore services, and it made us suspect that they paid the ransom to receive a decryptor.”

    “Garmin refused, though, to comment any further.”

    Wow.

  37. “After a four day outage, Garmin suddenly announced that they were starting to restore services, and it made us suspect that they paid the ransom to receive a decryptor.”

    “Garmin refused, though, to comment any further.”

    Wow.

    Garmin has been run by amateurs for a while. Problems like that happen when your employees are surfing pr0n or, at a minimum, streaming pirate sites on their company laptops instead of actually doing their jobs.

  38. @dadcooks, from that article you linked, a telling paragraph…

    “Disinfecting wipes, which are the hottest commodity in the business right now, will probably take longer because it’s a very complex supply chain to make them,” Dorer said. Many wipes are made from polyester spunlace, a material currently in short supply as it is also used to make personal protective equipment like masks, medical gowns and medical wipes.

    –I’m guessing that any ” very complex supply chain” product is having difficulty right now. It’s not much in the news, but china is still locking down whole cities.

    And half the ingredients for the spun non-woven fabric is wood pulp. Who knew?

    n


  39. As the saying goes, public schooling is so bad that any amateur can do better.

    Yeah, my youngest brother taught his son to be an alcoholic drunkard also.

    And…?

  40. Yep, super sized mega rolls of Charmin are only just showing back up, and they certainly aren’t on sale. I used to get the bulk pack at costco for $16- 18. Now it’s over $30 anyway, so when the auction had 3 cases of 24 for 30 plus tax and fees I bit the bullet.

    n

    (I just looked at my invoice and I won TWO cases of 24 @ $30 and one of 16 @ $25 plus tax and fees.) And just to be extra anal, the two cases are of the “ultra strong” and the one case was “ultra soft”, ie the red, and the blue. We all prefer the “ultra soft”, but the “ultra strong” beats the commercial tissue paper hands down…

  41. For those of you having trouble finding cleaning supplies, try contacting someone with a small restaurant or catering company. The restaurant supply store I go to has never had a shortage that I noticed and while the prices have come up a good bit, it’s not as much as in the consumer grocery stores. From what I hear the same goes for other restaurant supply stores in the area.

    The downside is that you might not be able to buy small bottles of hand soap, but have only the choice of one gallon refill jugs or a case of 24 small bottles.

  42. I just saw an article with a quote from the CEO of Clorox that they will not be able to meet the demand for most of their products until 2021.
    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-clorox-wipes/clorox-wont-have-enough-disinfecting-wipes-until-2021-its-ceo-says-idUSKCN2501EU
    What the heck is going on here?
    Things are not right.

    Most manufacturing facilities are running constantly at 80% to 90% of peak capacity. With everyone bleaching everything in sight for SARS-COV-2 disinfection, Clorox is saying that they need to add another Clorox plant or ten to meet the increased usage. With today’s regulatory structure of ten years to get the permits required from the EPA, Army Corps of Engineers, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Department of the Interior, Department of State, Coast Guard, Navy, etc, etc, etc, etc, etc, plants producing highly regulated chemicals concentrated from sea water have very long lead times to start producing product.

    In today’s regulatory nightmare, products like Clorox, Aspirin, Crude Oil, Sulfa Drugs, gasoline, diesel, etc, etc, would never get the federal, state, and local permits required to manufacture them. But since the products are generally over 100 years old, they cannot be easily removed from the marketplace without significant public outcry.

    BTW, if your manufacturing facility is running below 80 to 90% of peak capacity, then your mba boys and girls with their magic spreadsheets will tell you how to save lots of money by merging facilities and reducing headcount. I have seen it so many times that it hurts now. The magic mbas never take the cost of reopening a facility or building a new facility into account that I can see.

  43. –I’m guessing that any ” very complex supply chain” product is having difficulty right now. It’s not much in the news, but china is still locking down whole cities.

    And half the ingredients for the spun non-woven fabric is wood pulp. Who knew?

    Wood pulp is domestic. The US has such an abundance under normal circumstances that consumer TP does not touch recycled fiber in this country.

    Given the Mexican brands that suddenly appeared in HEB when baby wipes started running short, my guess is the supply chain for the polyester components originates south of the border.

  44. “Floods, Viruses, and Volcanoes: Managing Supply Chain in Uncertain Times”
    https://www.backblaze.com/blog/managing-supply-chain-in-uncertain-times/

    “At the most basic level, our services and products rely on a singular building block: the hard drive. And today, we’re going to discuss how our team has ensured that, as more businesses and individuals turn to cloud storage to solve their rapidly evolving data storage and management needs, we’ve had what we need to care for the petabytes of inbound data.”

    “We’re no strangers to navigating an external threat to business as usual. In 2011, flooding in Thailand impacted nearly 50% of the world’s hard drive manufacturing capability, limiting supply and dramatically raising hard drive prices. At the time, Backblaze was only about four years into providing its computer backup service, and we needed to find a way to keep up with storage demand without going broke. We came up with a hack that became internally known as “drive farming.””

    I have this mental image of farmers on tractors planting hard drive seeds and harvesting full grown 3.5 inch hard drives a couple of months later.

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  45. As the saying goes, public schooling is so bad that any amateur can do better.

    Yeah, my youngest brother taught his son to be an alcoholic drunkard also.

    And…?

    What ? I am just saying that lots of alcoholics drop out of school every day.

  46. “Mommy put us in time-out again”
    https://www.sovereignman.com/trends/mommy-put-us-in-time-out-again-28485/

    “CDC statistics, for example, show that 79.8% of Covid deaths are from retirees over the age of 65 who are no longer in the work force.”

    “Yet politicians still want to prevent people in their prime working years from being able to work– ages 25-64, whose mortality rate is very low according to CDC data.”

    “Most importantly, the CDC states that out of all ‘Covid deaths’, 94% were actually related to some other condition besides (or in addition to) the Coronavirus.”

    ““[O]n average, there were 2.6 additional conditions or causes per death” in addition to the Coronavirus.”

    “For example, roughly 10% of patients aged 0-24 years who tested positive for the Coronavirus actually died due to poisoning, accident, or intentional injury.”

    “Yet they’re still recorded as a ‘Covid death’.”

    If his stats are correct then we are being faked out big time. Rush Limbaugh has been bullhorning this for quite a while now.

    “That will bring the total new additional debt for 2020 to more than $5 trillion. It’s staggering.”

    “A banker friend of mine in Switzerland summed it up last week when he told me, “The more money they print and the more debt they borrow, the less anyone seems to care.””

    Yup, the USA is now a drunken sailor.

  47. “The PS4 now holds a very comfortable second place behind the PS2 in the best-selling home console list.”

    Wow, I had no idea that game consoles sold in the hundreds of millions. No wonder that area is competitive.

    Keep in mind, every single PlayStation and XBox sold now has a CPU featuring an AMD x86_64 core. That kind of volume made my $200 home server build possible.

    The PS4 is also a very capable BluRay player, and the PS3 was the last BluRay player made with component video output, capable of connecting to a late model standard def tube TV without tricks.

  48. Console gaming is a huge market. HUGE. Budgets bigger than blockbuster movies…

    n

  49. “The PS4 now holds a very comfortable second place behind the PS2 in the best-selling home console list.”

    Wow, I had no idea that game consoles sold in the hundreds of millions. No wonder that area is competitive.

    Keep in mind, every single PlayStation and XBox sold now has a CPU featuring an AMD x86_64 core. That kind of volume made my $200 home server build possible.

    Are you talking about repurposing a PS4 or XBox ? Or the fact that the x64 cpus and MBs are plentiful and cheap ?

  50. Console gaming is a huge market. HUGE. Budgets bigger than blockbuster movies…

    Yeah. Makes me think that I am in the wrong business.

  51. I don’t blame companies that make toilet paper or cleaning products for not running out and adding manufacturing capacity. A year from now when nobody gives a shit about this anymore they’re stuck with the expensive factory they no longer need. I wouldn’t add capacity either. Run what I got all day everyday and if that doesn’t meet demand, then too bad.


  52. What ? I am just saying that lots of alcoholics drop out of school every day.

    Which has nothing to do with home schooling, the quality of public schools, or the quality of unionized public school teachers.

    If his stats are correct then we are being faked out big time.

    As the wise among us -modest cough- have been saying for months.

    The only things we know for sure are that we’re being lied to and that lowlifes are using this as an excuse to grab money and power.

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  53. “Keep in mind, every single PlayStation and XBox sold now has a CPU featuring an AMD x86_64 core. That kind of volume made my $200 home server build possible.”

    Are you talking about repurposing a PS4 or XBox ? Or the fact that the x64 cpus and MBs are plentiful and cheap ?

    AMD APUs are powerful, plentiful and cheap. I used an A5-9500E for my home server, the same core as in the PS4 and curent XBox generation.

    I think that Sony and Microsoft have the consoles locked down pretty well these days. They don’t want a repeat of the first generation of XBox, manufactured in Mexico and sold at a loss, which quickly got hacked into XBMC systems.

  54. “XBMC systems.”

    -which is now Kodi and runs very well on old appliance level hardware.

    n

  55. I stole Lynn’s chicken joke and added SteveF’s line. Posted it to FB and in one hour 12 likes/haha and six shares.

    Heh. 🙂 Touched a nerve….

  56. Question for the house: How sensitive are home medical devices to flickers in line power? We’re having an increasing number of brief power outages, regionally, not just our neighborhood. Typically five seconds or less and very seldom over a minute (though if they’re over a minute they’re going to be for hours). With various broken-down old grannies needing CPAP machines and nighttime monitoring machines and I don’t know what else, I’m looking for ways to keep them running.

    Should I be looking for UPSs for each device or at least for each granny? If I’d rather get a whole-house battery/automatic generator, how quick a response time should I look for?

    If the answer is that I need to look at each device or expected device and plan around them individually, that’s fine.

  57. AMD APUs are powerful, plentiful and cheap. I used an A5-9500E for my home server, the same core as in the PS4 and curent XBox generation.

    My big problem with AMD cpus is that they were noisy. But I have not bought an AMD cpu for over a decade as I had a dual Opteron box running Windows 2000 then Windows XP. Was very quick and sounded like a 737 spooling up.

  58. “23 Best Science Fiction Pandemic Books” by Dan Livingston
    https://best-sci-fi-books.com/23-best-science-fiction-pandemic-books/

    I have read the “Earth Abides”, “Lock In”, “The Passage”, “I Am Legend”, “The Andromeda Strain”, and “World War Z”.

    There are two more great stories to add to this list:
    1. “THE JAKARTA PANDEMIC: A Modern Thriller (Alex Fletcher)” by Steven Konkoly
    https://www.amazon.com/JAKARTA-PANDEMIC-Modern-Thriller-Fletcher/dp/1796209864/?tag=ttgnet-20
    2. “Emergence” by David R. Palmer
    https://www.amazon.com/Emergence-David-R-Palmer/dp/194881806X/?tag=ttgnet-20

  59. @SteveF

    At our house, we have a full-time oxygen generator machine (the big blue box). A power interruption will cause the machine to solid-beep until the power is restored, or the machine switch is turned off. Little power glitches don’t seem to bother it.

    I have a CPAP machine – about two years old – that doesn’t seem to mind power glitches. A full power fail will cause it not to work. But since the oxygen generator machine is also in the bedroom, that alerts me to CPAP failure. Slightly hard to breath without the CPAP air flow. But minor glitches don’t affect the settings.

    My gas-powered generator, with bypass switches wired into the panel, is used for extended power outages. The bedroom circuit is one of the curcuits on the generator, and the oxygen generator works fine on that. Along with the fridge, freezer, DirecTV box, and LCD TV. All lights in the house are LED. The generator load is about 2500W; about 40% load on the generator, during a full outage.

    I live in a residential area, but we can get 1-3 short power outages a year, usually due to wind blowing trees on the power lines. Since we are in a residential area, we get a bit higher priority on power outages fixes.


  60. The only things we know for sure are that we’re being lied to and that lowlifes are using this as an excuse to grab money and power.

    Business as usual. Now with “stay home”, “close your shop, restaurant, etc.”, and “wear a face diaper” orders. Not actual LAWS, just orders from a Governor or some un-elected toad who is some random of the 57 woke genders that work for the government.

    My tin hat theory is that the economy is about to take a huge dump. Like, overflow the toilet. Because they didn’t flush the pot in ’08 or so.
    How can stocks be up so much while little businesses are forced shut? But the horrible gonna kill everyone virus has no effect at WalMart or Home Depot and grocery stores?

    When I was a kid, I had a savings account at a bank in Mobile. I put my baby sitting and bottle collecting and allowance money in there. They paid 6%. It was not a huge amount, tho $80 was a huge amount to me in 1970, but I could see the interest adding up.

    Now? I get .01% and they act like they are doing me a favor giving me $2 per quarter on $5500. Yeah, I know I can move the CU money elsewhere but that’s my stash that I have to go to the bank to touch. It’s for when the well goes bad and I need to have the pump replaced. Safer there than cash buried under the pear tree. Hopefully.

    This is all to distract and try to place the blame elsewhere. But Great Depression #2 seems to be happening soon.

    Like Nick says, keep stacking. I say don’t talk about what you have stacked.

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  61. “AMD APUs are powerful, plentiful and cheap. I used an A5-9500E for my home server, the same core as in the PS4 and curent XBox generation.”

    My big problem with AMD cpus is that they were noisy. But I have not bought an AMD cpu for over a decade as I had a dual Opteron box running Windows 2000 then Windows XP. Was very quick and sounded like a 737 spooling up.

    I had a first gen Athlon 64, and when I would boot the system under Linux to perform the annual “Doctor Who” Christmas show DVD encode, I had to be careful to unplug the holiday lights outside or the combination load would make the circuit breaker pop. That part of the house never needed head in the Winter — FL, granted — and the only way the room was tolerable in Summer was a (then) $300 cast iron Hunter original fan with the fifth blade removed running on the medium setting.

    (Damn, do I regret leaving that fan in Florida. The new owners of my house most likely tossed it, and I can’t touch a new one for less than $500.)

    Still, I was sad when the Athlon burned itself up. That chip motivated Chipzilla like nothing else prior from AMD, and Core emerged from the desert, literally, to replace the Pentium IV atrocity.

    Nowadays, for a serious work computer or laptop, I’d still go with Chipzilla. The home server was a fun project to see how cheap I could go and still have something decent that ran cool/quiet in the guest room. I’d still run my Intel Atom — *5W* idle vs 35W TDP for the AMD — if the chipset hadn’t been hobbled with A 2 GB RAM memory limit, unusable even for Linux anymore.

  62. I’m a mile from the paved road. After the almost two week outage a few years ago, from an ice storm, PEC has been on a tear about pruning trees.

    I do get the random “oops” and the lights blink. If the oven clock doesn’t need resetting, it’s all good. Have to set the nuker’s clock and maybe the t-stat.

    I have all PCs on a UPS along with the various switches and hubs and router and stuff. Four UPS units here. One is for the TV stuff… because the DirecTv box would take 10 minutes to reboot (but it’s gone) and also because I’m not exactly sure how a LaserDisc or DVD player work, but to help avoid a head crash.

    I’d go for a UPS for each Granny. If you shop around, maybe $80 per Granny. But when the lights blink and their CPAP never misses a beat, dude, you will be a hero!

  63. This is all to distract and try to place the blame elsewhere. But Great Depression #2 seems to be happening soon.

    My son is calling it the “Greater Depression”. This should rock your boat, a 15% increase in unemployment with only a 5% recovery so far. Better batten down the hatches, cause the cyclone of hurt is coming.
    http://www.shadowstats.com/alternate_data/unemployment-charts

  64. I have all PCs on a UPS along with the various switches and hubs and router and stuff. Four UPS units here. One is for the TV stuff… because the DirecTv box would take 10 minutes to reboot (but it’s gone) and also because I’m not exactly sure how a LaserDisc or DVD player work, but to help avoid a head crash.

    I’d go for a UPS for each Granny. If you shop around, maybe $80 per Granny. But when the lights blink and their CPAP never misses a beat, dude, you will be a hero!

    I am not as big a fan of UPSes anymore. Maybe because I have three dead ones that I need to take to recycling center in the corner of my office. Maybe because they die after three to six years, usually with nary a scream. I usually don’t know that there is a problem until an outage.

    I’ve got about 13 or 15 UPSes in the office right now (I would have to take off my shoes and socks to get an accurate count) and two at the house. I did manage to replace the batteries in a five year old 1500 VA Cyberpower UPS at the house that has the comcast modem, tplink hub and wifi, a roku, and the 46 inch Sony LCD on it. More batteries to recycle.
    https://www.amazon.com/CyberPower-CP1500AVRLCD-Intelligent-Outlets-Mini-Tower/dp/B000FBK3QK/?tag=ttgnet-20

  65. The Up and Down thumb feature is nice. And the smiley faces. A bit of feedback.

    But…. when you get a down, a “why” comment option could be interesting.

    Anyway. I woke up crabby today and other than Penny, all the critters are very annoying. And it’s hot.

    Tho the kittens by the back door did climb into the hackberry tree and have draped themselves in forks. Almost like a NatGeo thing with leopards. 🙂

  66. Strangely it’s been 10 degrees below normal here in Indian country this week. High of 80f at 2pm today with no humidity to notice. Nice weather for fall not August. But I’m not complaining.

  67. How can stocks be up so much while little businesses are forced shut? But the horrible gonna kill everyone virus has no effect at WalMart or Home Depot and grocery stores?

    Because the Federal Reserve is pumping cash into the big Wall Street boys and they are pumping it into the FANG stocks.
    https://www.marketwatch.com/story/can-fang-stocks-continue-to-outshine-the-broader-technology-sector-2020-06-23

    “As of the end of May, the FANG+ Index’s components were Amazon.com Inc. AMZN, +0.86%, Netflix Inc. NFLX, +2.21%, Apple Inc. AAPL, +0.66%, Facebook, Inc. FB, -0.84%, Alphabet Inc. GOOG, -0.64% GOOGL, -0.63% Alibaba Holding Corp BABA, +1.65%, Baidu, Inc. BIDU, +5.07%, NVIDIA Corporation NVDA, +1.97%, Tesla Inc. TSLA, +0.13%, and Twitter Inc TWTR, -0.11%.”

    I would not put my supper money into any stocks. But I would put beer money, if you can do without beer.

    I missed most of the runup on Amazon and all of the runup on Tesla. I did catch some of the Netflix runup.

    Note that Walmart is not in that list. Walmart still does 10X ??? 5X ??? 2X ??? more business than Amazon when you count the brick and mortar sales.
    https://fortune.com/2020/05/19/walmart-online-sales-amazon-ecommerce/

  68. I don’t do stocks. I had stock in CircleK via payroll deduction and somehow or another, a few years of $40/month vanished. $1500+ went to almost $6 after a 10 to 1 and then I don’t know what they did. The Hokey Pokey? But when the pay is $5.25 an hour plus a day a week of overtime, I think I was ripped off. Actually, no thinking needed.

    My 401k does what ever. I might get that money, maybe not. But I didn’t pay income taxes on it. <— big whoop.

    And yeah, I did the max HEB match and rounded up. Perhaps not enough in the account, but, whatever.

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  69. “Leaked Video Exposes George Floyd’s Death As Tragedy And Race Hoax Used To Divide Us”
    https://www.outkick.com/george-floyd-bodycam-footage-shows-it-wasnt-about-race-will-nbactivists-actually-admit-that/

    “The Daily Mail, a London-based newspaper, published the bodycam videos of two of the four former Minneapolis police officers charged with crimes in Floyd’s death.”
    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8576371/Police-bodycam-footage-shows-moment-moment-arrest-George-Floyd-time.html

    “The videos show police verbally and physically struggling to get Floyd to comply. Floyd appears panicked, disoriented, desperate and totally non-compliant. He complains that he can’t breathe while standing on two feet. He claims his mother just died and that he can’t sit in the back of the police car because he’s claustrophobic. He repeatedly begs the officers not to shoot him. He worms the upper part of his body out of the police car and asks to lay on the ground.”

    “Early on during the encounter, long before the police restrain Floyd on his stomach, a female bystander shouts at Floyd to quit “resisting” and a male bystander pleads with Floyd that he can’t “win.””

    Other sources are saying that George Floyd had several banned or regulated drugs in his body. One of them is claiming eight drugs !

    This was not racial, it was about stealing stuff from the retailer. So, do the cops just let everyone who resists arrest to walk nowadays ? If Floyd had complied with the cops, he might be alive today if he had survived the heart attack he was apparently having.

    Hat tip to:
    https://thelibertydaily.com/

  70. I am not as big a fan of UPSes anymore. Maybe because I have three dead ones that I need to take to recycling center in the corner of my office. Maybe because they die after three to six years, usually with nary a scream. I usually don’t know that there is a problem until an outage.

    I have a UPS on my home server and primary desktop, and I keep another small UPS on the cable modem/wifi router combination at the point where the cable enters the house.

    The desktop/server UPS probably isn’t necessary, but it saves me the hassle of restarting the home server whenever the power fails. The other UPS feeding the network hardware has greatly improved the stability of my cable modem connection which used to be somewhat unreliable in afternoons in the Summer when Oncor had minor hiccups on the grid.

  71. I have Cyberpower UPS units. They use two 12 volt 7 amp hour sealed batteries. Standard size. Tractor Supply sells the battery for $35 or so, each, that’s what the gate openers use. I forget what Cyberpower sells their batteries for.

    The local feed store? Same thing. For deer feeders. $14 each.

    Yeah, I know the surge protection part “gets old”. But they are all plugged into a Tripplight surge suppressor. The one that is about the size of an outlet box.


  72. I’ve got about 13 or 15 UPSes in the office right now (I would have to take off my shoes and socks to get an accurate count)

    Good thing you don’t have 21 UPSes. You would have to get naked.

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  73. Thanks, RickH and Paul. I think I’ll get a couple UPSs. Lynn’s point about the lifespan of UPSs is well taken, but to be frank it compares favorably with the expected lifespan of the grannies.

    I don’t do stocks. … [money] vanished.

    Likewise. Somehow the value of the stocks always went to a few cents per share, whether it was employee stock options with employers or separate stocks purchased with the advice of a financial planner. I understand it’s a gamble, but a 100% failure rate suggests either that I’m very unskilled or unlucky or that there’s a certain lack of honesty somewhere in the system. (Far be it to question the honesty or competence of the advisers a corporation brings in as one of the employee benefits, but…)

    The one employee stock option purchase was especially annoying because I had to pay taxes on the difference between the option price and the value when I exercised the option, a significant amount, but I didn’t get any kind of credit when the value of the shares went to 0 shortly after I got them and before I could sell them. I recall an investigation into the actions of the CEO and a few others who profited nicely from the price spike, but never heard how that came out.


  74. This was not racial, it was about stealing stuff from the retailer. So, do the cops just let everyone who resists arrest to walk nowadays ?

    Only XXXXX people. You know what I mean.

  75. Thanks, RickH and Paul. I think I’ll get a couple UPSs. Lynn’s point about the lifespan of UPSs is well taken, but to be frank it compares favorably with the expected lifespan of the grannies.

    BTW, I naively thought that getting a bigger UPS (the 1500 VA / 900 watt) would allow a longer life. It did not. The bigger UPS does allow a longer time to empty, from usually ten minutes to twenty minutes. That gives you more time to panic about what you are going to when the battery runs out.

    So, in your house you now have you, the wife, your daughter, the college kid bunking in, her mother, and your mother. I hope you have a big house.

    Wait, you said that the college kid went back to China ??? So that just leaves you with the four women. Dude ! Four chiefs and one Indian. Wait, that is racist.

  76. This was not racial, it was about stealing stuff from the retailer. So, do the cops just let everyone who resists arrest to walk nowadays ?

    Only XXXXX people. You know what I mean.

    So you mean if I resist now while being arrested, I will get a beat down. Gotcha.

    Note to self, do not ever get arrested. If I get arrested, don’t resist.


  77. Good thing you don’t have 21 UPSes. You would have to get naked.

    Only after he uses his nose and each ear.. 🙂

  78. The one employee stock option purchase was especially annoying because I had to pay taxes on the difference between the option price and the value when I exercised the option, a significant amount, but I didn’t get any kind of credit when the value of the shares went to 0 shortly after I got them and before I could sell them. I recall an investigation into the actions of the CEO and a few others who profited nicely from the price spike, but never heard how that came out.

    You should have been able to deduct up to $3,000 ??? per year as a capital loss. Or against any capital gain that year or in the future.
    https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/capital-gains-and-losses-10-helpful-facts-to-know-0

    And yes, having to pay taxes on a phantom gain is a crock. If you did not get any money in your pocket then you did not have a taxable gain in my book. The only time you might have a taxable gain is when you actually sell the appreciated property for cash money.

    Lots of people in the tech industries have been burned on that in the last thirty years. Note that Bill Gates and many others did not, they had great tax advisors and special tax acts of Congress for their special needs.

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  79. in your house you now have you, the wife, your daughter, the college kid bunking in, her mother, and your mother.

    Not that dire. The college kid finally was able to get a flight home. It took ages to find a non-cancelled flight (in part because of flights which were cancelled only a couple days before they were supposed to happen) with the search starting after RPI announced that at least the Fall classes were going to be remote, but he finally got gone. We’ll leave discussion of the usefulness of an engineering degree obtained over Zoom for a later time.

    The other granny is my mom, who doesn’t live with us. She’s got a number of at-home devices and today’s power failure got me to thinking I ought to do something about that. There are also a number of other grannies that I know of, who were told basically that if the power goes out they should call an ambulance and wait at the hospital until the power is restored. One might question the wisdom of multiple $1000 ambulance trips if the power in the apartment complex goes out for more than a minute, as contrasted with a half-dozen $100 UPSs, but I’m not one of the big brains who allocates the spending of tax dollars.

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  80. Oh, and the Cyberpower software ain’t worth shirt(-r) if your PC is asleep.

    For useful stuff like shutting down the PC gracefully. Which is the whole point of the software. Well, maybe I’m just a jerk.

    Dang things will beep and not enough juice at 3AM to stumble and bumble in the dark to wake PC and tell Windows to shut down.

    So, fancy surge protector and a bit o’ backup for the random “blink” and maybe 15 minutes max before Windows is bitching about an improper shutdown.

    It works for me.

  81. Only after he uses his nose and each ear..

    Well, if you want to get technical.

    One might question the wisdom of multiple $1000 ambulance trips

    At the age of the individuals Medicare picks up most of the tab, and the (hopefully they have it) supplemental coverage will cover the rest.

    I have Medicare, and supplemental. Deductibles have been met for the year. I could visit the doctor, go to the ER, etc. at zero cost out of my pocket. Sometimes it is tempting for that little pain, that tiny abrasion or cut. But I was not raised that way. ER’s are for emergencies as are ambulances. Ambulances are not taxis and ERs are not for minor issues.

    Over the years I have experienced some significant cuts. If it is during a weekday I go to my local doctor who has always treated the cuts with stitches. He likes the change of pace from what a general practice consists. If on a weekend I have no choice but the ER, but I use my own vehicle.

    I know of other people, on welfare, who demand an ambulance for even minor items. The sense of irresponsibility, of entitlement, boggles the mind. Sniffles in a child and an immediate trip to the ER. Some of these people have been to the ER ten times in the last year.

    So, fancy surge protector and a bit o’ backup for the random “blink” and maybe 15 minutes max before Windows is bitching about an improper shutdown.

    No surge protector for me, just the UPS. It holds my system (including cable modem, router, and a switch) through the short power outages. If the battery runs down and the system dies, no big deal. APC 1200 purchased from Costco for about $100.00. Wife’s system has a smaller UPS as only her system is protected, no extra devices.

    The one employee stock option purchase was especially annoying

    The bank I used to formerly work at had an employee stock purchase option at a reduced price per share. I opted instead for cash to be put in my fund rather than stock. On of my co-workers had $400,000 in stock and was proud. Then the bank become insolvent and fell under FDIC and assets bought by another bank. Stock was not considered an asset or liability. The chap lost everything. Diversification is the key and employee stock options are not a good diversification track.

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  82. I don’t do stocks. … [money] vanished

    After reading Rich Dad Poor Dad I don’t “play the market”, I put my investment in something I can control the value of and can get never go to zero like rental property and my ATM business. I was all set for a nice retirement with fantastic stock options in MCI till they went bankrupt and left me high and dry. So now it’s SSI and ATM income with the rental property as a place for my extra money. I’m selling the self storage facility next month because it really requires more time and work than I want to spend, I am retired after all.

  83. The bank I used to formerly work at had an employee stock purchase option at a reduced price per share. I opted instead for cash to be put in my fund rather than stock. On of my co-workers had $400,000 in stock and was proud. Then the bank become insolvent and fell under FDIC and assets bought by another bank. Stock was not considered an asset or liability. The chap lost everything. Diversification is the key and employee stock options are not a good diversification track.

    CGI emphasized the ESOP discounted plan to the point that they hid the 401(k) unless, like me, the employee took the initiative to figure out how to enroll. Once I navigated the bureaucracy, the 401(k) was actually pretty decent — matching up to 6% and T. Rowe funds.

    I also had the ESOP, but at the absolute minimum (1% of salary … ?) to avoid political problems at work. The annual evaluations didn’t consider ESOP participation, but the token hire member manager openly talked about how he had leeway on a “social” number which he warned that he could use to adjust the evaluation by a whole notch — from satisfactory to needs improvement.

    Last time I saw my member manager, he was stocking shelves at Buc-ee’s, pretending he didn’t see me when I walked in the store that afternoon.

  84. I’m selling the self storage facility next month because it really requires more time and work than I want to spend, I am retired after all.

    I have been considering building a self storage facility on my 9 acre commercial property. Or the 5 acre real estate IRA property. I have no extra energy. Sounds like I better not do that. I have been wondering if one has 20 to 50 units (depending on the size of each unit) what the work level would be.

    I have also been considering starting the building of 6,250 ft2 office warehouses that are segmented into five sections of 1,250 ft2 each. The first one is going to be very expensive as I have to build a $200,000 fire station with a 10,000 gallon fire water tank and a 1/2 to 1 acre rain water detention pond (normally dry with a slow pump).

  85. Anchorage is lifting its collective finger at the Mayor. Several other good articles on this same site.

    https://mustreadalaska.com/kriners-war-diner-opens-code-enforcers-converge-and-anchorage-takes-to-facebook-to-discuss/

    There’s a muni hosted Zoom meeting tomorrow so the Administration can man-splain to us racist peons how they are right and we are wrong.

    ——
    The waste man hauled away the 20 bags of crawl space horror with our weekly pick up this morning. I owe them a serious Thank You and case of beer.

    Two new litters of rabbits, they’ll be two weeks old this Thursday. The litter by the new mother rabbit are growing more slowly, and she has a runt. I’ve been pulling mama out and putting runt on her for a few extra minutes a day. The runt is lively but I don’t have high hopes that it will survive. The siblings are growing by leaps and bounds while runt has only made small gains. I suspect soon the runt won’t be able to compete. The runt doesn’t appear to be suffering, simply very small. The litter from the experienced doe are fat, sassy, and wildly athletic. Their eyes are open already. Between the two mamas there are 15 kits. There were three additional poorly developed fetus and a dead kit (from what I don’t know).

    Labor Day weekend will fill the freezer with five or six rabbits, and probably the same in young roosters. The new kits will go to freezer camp late October / early November. One of my bucks has turned into a jerk at feeding time. If he doesn’t respond to manners training by Labor Day he will join his brethren in the cold place.

    I broke down and ordered another AH3036 wire hutch as I’ve been unhappy with the second hand alternatives and crappy wire I’ve found locally. Typical Alaska, paid more for shipping than for the item, and it’s entirely possible the order will get cancelled by the vendor.

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  86. How can stocks be up so much while little businesses are forced shut?”

    –stocks are up because it’s gambling. There is a lot of money being thrown around by un- or under- employed people sitting at home all day watching the news, vis Robinhood. They figure that if they can’t draw a paycheck they better make some money ‘in the market’. After all, everyone’s doing it and the market always goes up, and when it doesn’t it’s just a buying opportunity for when the market ‘recovers’… And they are up, until they’re not. Unlike casino gamblers who have learned the hard way, they don’t usually take money off the table as it goes up either. Paper gains are not gains. Only sold – and then cashed out – is a gain.

    Valuations don’t matter. Price doesn’t matter. Profit or even a plan to get to profit doesn’t matter. What matters is ‘buying the dip’ and ‘chasing vol’…

    It’s a classic bubble market, and they always pop. Always. So many retail investors buying in while the pros are selling out… I’ve seen this story before and the aftermath will be ugly.

    It’ll be ten years at least before they end up back even.

    n

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  87. @steve, UPS for each granny.

    And make sure the power company has them registered as needing a powered medical device. That will help with getting power restored (supposed to anyway).

    Went to the chiropractor and got an adjustment. Stuff moved and I felt better. I’ll be stretching and then I’ll follow up on Friday. I did not dig it being in there at all. They were checking temps at the door, and the table was wet when I sat down at it, but they still missed wiping the arm rests and a couple of knobs I had to hold while she tried to pull my legs off… and it was busy. I’ll go earlier in the day on Friday. I hand sanitized and washed when I got home. Never did put my outer shirt back on. And there were obvious routes for contamination- they have little baskets to empty your pockets into, and they were not cleaned. A puts phone into basket, slobber gets on basket, B puts phone in basket, A’s slobber gets on B’s phone and then transferred to B’s face…

    Picked up my TP and got it put away.

    n


  88. How can stocks be up so much while little businesses are forced shut?”

    –stocks are up because it’s gambling. There is a lot of money being thrown around by un- or under- employed people sitting at home all day watching the news, vis Robinhood. They figure that if they can’t draw a paycheck they better make some money ‘in the market’. After all, everyone’s doing it and the market always goes up, and when it doesn’t it’s just a buying opportunity for when the market ‘recovers’… And they are up, until they’re not. Unlike casino gamblers who have learned the hard way, they don’t usually take money off the table as it goes up either. Paper gains are not gains. Only sold – and then cashed out – is a gain.

    Valuations don’t matter. Price doesn’t matter. Profit or even a plan to get to profit doesn’t matter. What matters is ‘buying the dip’ and ‘chasing vol’…

    It’s a classic bubble market, and they always pop. Always. So many retail investors buying in while the pros are selling out… I’ve seen this story before and the aftermath will be ugly.

    It’ll be ten years at least before they end up back even.

    It is incredibly hard to time the market.

    “Prediction is very difficult, especially if it’s about the future.” – Niels Bohr
    https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/niels_bohr_130288


  89. It is incredibly hard to time the market.

    Not talking about timing the market, although that is in fact exactly what the pros try to do.* Talking about deciding on a reasonable rate of return, and when you see that, convert some of the stock back into cash. Take the profit. 100%, 200% are outrageous rates of return btw. If you don’t take some profit at that point, you really are gambling, ie. “Letting it ride”. The house always wins if you play long enough.

    n

    *Buy low and sell high is the quintessential advice, and is market timing. The idea that it’s only timing if you are trying to pick the EXACT moment of the peak or valley is false.

    What retail investors mostly do, and some famous hedge fund and money market gurus too, is buy high and sell low. This is classic ‘greater fool’ or ‘bagholder’ behavior. “OH that stock is doing great! It’s WAY up! I need to buy that.” Thus providing a market and mechanism for all the smart money to SELL after an increase in value and “lock in their profit.”

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  90. Not talking about timing the market, although that is in fact exactly what the pros try to do.* Talking about deciding on a reasonable rate of return, and when you see that, convert some of the stock back into cash. Take the profit. 100%, 200% are outrageous rates of return btw. If you don’t take some profit at that point, you really are gambling, ie. “Letting it ride”. The house always wins if you play long enough.

    My Netflix is up 995% and my Amazon is up 144%. But they are in my IRA and I do not want to take money out for a long while, maybe a decade, maybe two decades.

    My Ford is down 31%, my Exxon is down 51%, and my brother’s bank is down 47%. I do not understand my brother’s bank being down since they are very profitable.

    I sure don’t want to buy any more Ford. Nor Tesla.

  91. @Nick:

    Went to the chiropractor and got an adjustment. Stuff moved and I felt better.

    Congratulations! I’m still doing my Quasimodo impression, but it’s better.

    Serendipity Story Time: Another factor in the back complaint is that I dragged out the old Super C8 to look at the comet, and then Jupiter and Saturn, and spent way too much time bent over looking through an eyepiece. That didn’t help I’m sure, so I was thinking about making an adjustable observers chair, sometimes called a ‘Denver Chair’.

    Then I had a faint memory of a Newtonian telescope design where the diagonal directed the light through the telescope mounting, I.e., the eyepiece didn’t move. I couldn’t remember what it was called, and Google searches came up empty. Then, while looking at Astromart in search of a new finderscope, there, at the top of the main page, was an article on how to build a Porter-Springfield SCT! Bingo. Recognized the term immediately.

    https://astromart.com/articles/how-to/show/a-retake-on-the-porter-springfield-mount

    After reading the article (good one) I did another G search. And the second relative result, after the Astromart article was by Jeff Duntemann, at his old Copperwood site!

    http://www.copperwood.com/telescopes/scopegallery.htm

    I doubt I’ll get around to building one this year (maybe never) but it was a fun thing to research whilst sitting very very still most of the day.


  92. I have been considering building a self storage facility on my 9 acre commercial property. Or the 5 acre real estate IRA property. I have no extra energy. Sounds like I better not do that. I have been wondering if one has 20 to 50 units (depending on the size of each unit) what the work level would be.

    In my experience, you need at least 80 units to make any money. And you need a full time manager on-site. In addition, my facility will require some serious maintenance in a few years and it doesn’t pay enough for me to justify.


  93. Dance Moms star Maddie Ziegler apologizes for ‘ignorant and racially insensitive’ posts from when she was nine where she says she ‘mocked people and accents’

    Jebus H… she was being silly at age NINE.

    Wtf is wrong with people?

    FMOD can’t come soon enough.

    n

  94. I have been considering building a self storage facility on my 9 acre commercial property. Or the 5 acre real estate IRA property. I have no extra energy. Sounds like I better not do that. I have been wondering if one has 20 to 50 units (depending on the size of each unit) what the work level would be.

    In my experience, you need at least 80 units to make any money. And you need a full time manager on-site. In addition, my facility will require some serious maintenance in a few years and it doesn’t pay enough for me to justify.

    There is an open air (mostly roof only) storage facility about a mile down the road on 2.5 acres. It has about 45 drive into units (15 units are fully enclosed and do have 10 foot wide x 14 foot tall roll up doors at the back). It is always totally full. I have been wondering if it makes money and how much management is required. The surface is totally pea gravel and has been extensively redone at least twice now. Access is via a card-key system at the front gate. I have casually been thinking about building something like that.
    http://sugarlandrvandboatstorage.com/
    or
    https://www.google.com/maps/place/Sugarland+RV+and+Boat+Storage/@29.5362935,-95.6899291,140m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4!1s0x8640e3ac95ee84c5:0x9d71b30d468f3ec2!8m2!3d29.5359466!4d-95.6895447

    The facility does not have water and there are two port-a-potties. High end !

  95. One or possibly both of the storage facilities I use have people living out of units. They don’t live IN them, but they have most of their stuff in the unit and are in the unit daily. I don’t know where they sleep, car probably. I think that’s likely to increase given current and probable future conditions. And I don’t think you want anything like that.

    n

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  96. The Up and Down thumb feature is nice. And the smiley faces. A bit of feedback.
    But…. when you get a down, a “why” comment option could be interesting.

    I agree with the features being nice.

    I am also mystified about the down votes. Some are arguably political differences and I can understand those but others are just really puzzling. I do not wish a forcing mechanism but I would really like to see some comments -at least now and then- so I can understand the why of the downvote.

    This site has contributors\commenters that are opinionated and leans away from progressive views buy they have always been tolerant and respectful. There are no reasons for not voicing different views on a subject.

    And this actually brings back memories of OFD and religious views and discussions. It was good to see those.

  97. I could have the religious discussions, but I don’t have the FAITH so they ring a bit hollow. It was a focus of my studies for a while.

    FWIW, I believe we would not be the country we are (arguably were) without the judeo-christian culture and values, and particularly the Protestant work ethic….

    But that’s perhaps a discussion for another time. (and RBT often had very strong things to say on the topic 🙂 )

    n

    NB- most of the rest of the world has a religious viewpoint on most issues. It’s a bit nuts that the Supreme Court interpretation of the 1A means not including any religious discussion in public policy, even if just for context or historical reasons. To pretend that there isn’t a religious reason for things is a form of doublespeak.

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  98. @ Marcelo ,

    I just scrolled back up thru today, and someone doesn’t like any financial discussion or criticism of the educational system in the US. Or maybe two someones…one for each subject?

    I don’t usually look at them or even really see them. There is a bit of what the old timers online would call egoboo involved, but I grew accustomed to not looking at them in other places online. youtube will often have totally bizarre like to dislike ratios on stuff. 10K likes and 4 dislikes…. and you can spend a lot of time wondering why.

    I like to see a bit of feedback. I’d prefer if someone disagrees that they participate with words, but sometimes you’re just too tired or you’ve already said your piece. (why I didn’t respond to Ayj’s disagreement with me about the generation that lived thru the big war having to die before the next big war. It isn’t my original thought, I don’t feel like pulling the links together, and anyway it’s not important in the grand scheme of things and I value his [very different] perspective on things.) I like it that he made the comment rather than just a thumbs down because I could engage him if I had time and energy to do so.

    Most of the frequent commentors here would have a hard time NOT responding to stuff with comments. 🙂

    I see the thumbs as a sort of quick pat on the back, or applause…

    n

  99. Anchorage is lifting its collective finger at the Mayor. Several other good articles on this same site.

    https://mustreadalaska.com/kriners-war-diner-opens-code-enforcers-converge-and-anchorage-takes-to-facebook-to-discuss/:

    Then came a text message from Mayor Ethan Berkowitz to the owner of Kriner’s Diner. The mayor wanted to talk.

    “Come on in,” Andy Kriner responded on text. There was a phone call. Evidently the mayor was trying to convince Kriner that the CARES Act money would cover his losses. Kriner did not seem to have time; there were people to feed.

    Two BIG thumbs-up for Kriner!

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  100. One or possibly both of the storage facilities I use have people living out of units. They don’t live IN them, but they have most of their stuff in the unit and are in the unit daily. I don’t know where they sleep, car probably. I think that’s likely to increase given current and probable future conditions. And I don’t think you want anything like that.

    Ugh. People living in the storage unit would suck. People are trashy.

    I did have the tenant living in the 3,750 ft2 office-warehouse for about six months. He had a queen sized bed in the office which barely fit with his chest of drawers. But the office has a kitchenette and a shower so it is livable. The water comes from my well and the sewer goes to my aerobic septic tank.

    Of course, even with an open covered drive through, somebody could park an RV in there and live in that. I sure don’t want to have an RV park. We’ve got an 300+ unit RV park down the way and it is a mess. Lots of sewage problems, it always smells bad around the back where the sewage is at.

  101. https://arstechnica.com/science/2020/08/an-early-version-of-starship-takes-its-first-tentative-steps-off-earth/

    Do you want to see a few photographs of a really big water heater hurtling up 150 metres into the air? Here’s your chance. Follow the link to the space and no-more-technology site.

    Oh my goodness ! That thing looks to be 250 feet tall !

    And I thought that they had a guy strapped to the side at first.

    Yup, the New York City to Tokyo ballistic will be lifting off soon.

  102. I am also mystified about the down votes. Some are arguably political differences and I can understand those but others are just really puzzling. I do not wish a forcing mechanism but I would really like to see some comments -at least now and then- so I can understand the why of the downvote.

    I don’t like the down votes either. No explanation of why the down voter disagreed with you. Or else the down voter did not like the posting that was made, I am not sure.

  103. Even with no explanation, a down vote still conveys some info, so I’m for keeping them.

    n

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