W.O.O.D. 25 November 2019


This is another of the W.O.O.D. series of semi-regular
Weekly Occasional Open Discussions.
(i.e. if I forget and skip one, no big)

Immediate prior one here:

and remains open for threads running there (at least until the ‘several month’ auto-close of comments on stale threads).

Canonical list of old ones here:

For just general FYI notices, use to “tips” pages. All the old ones remain for historical reference:
Tips Pages

What’s Going On?


Now postponed to January 31st, maybe.

A new election is scheduled for Dec. 12th.

Folks positioning for the election with Boris likely to win as Corbyn has gone to far left positions.

So, for now, It’s still Groundhog Day and will be until mid December, or January, or…

National Riots

These things are just snowballing. Pretty soon it will be easier to list the places NOT having a riot. Let’s see if I can get them all (or at least the big ones) from memory.


France (Yellow Vests), Greeks had a riot at a migrant camp on Lesbos, Malta had a migrant riot, Barcelona had an independence riot, and I’m sure there’s more, but mostly it’s smaller stuff.

South America:

Chile, Argentina, Bolivia (potentially a coup / color revolution), Venezuela and some unrest in Colombia now too.

Asia / Middle East:

Hong Kong is still going strong. There’s unrest in Indonesia as rice is not doing well this year (similar to the rice shortage in the Philippines and their grumping). Bangladesh had a riot last month over a Facebook page. Then there’s Lebanon where the people are trying to get a new government. I’m leaving off the places with a war (Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Afghanistan) but do note that in Iran they have had some big riots with folks shot by police.

Also note that Hong Kong took a break for an election, elected a Democracy Candidate, so watch this space.


Not kept up on Africa. This article has a nice map in it:
https://www.biznews.com/africa/2019/01/11/elections-unrest-africa-main-hotspots-2019 but it is from last January.

African Trouble Spots & Elections

African Trouble Spots & Elections

These folks have the list of current travel warnings:
https://www.tripsavvy.com/travel-warnings-for-countries-in-africa-1454328 and it’s a longer list, but travel warnings are not just for civil unrest. These are all a 2 or higher on the scale where 1 is “normal”. Most of these are just for crime and “terrorism”:

Algeria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lybia, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Nigeria, Republic of the Congo, Sierra Leon, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Tunesia, Uganda, Zimbabwe.

I think you can see why I don’t try to keep up on African issues. The continent is a mess, their governments are terrible, and it isn’t particularly important on the world stage.

Or you can hit the US Gov. site for a full list:

I doubt I’ll ever go to Africa and the major effect will be folks trying to escape to Europe. Egypt is THE big population center of the Arab Muslim world so when they have “issues” it’s news. Otherwise not really something I watch often. Just don’t be a White farmer in southern Africa…

I’m sure I’ve missed a few somewhere and I’ve completely skipped the Caribbean and Pacific Islands. Whatever. The world is a mess.

Who’s Your President?

Looks like it’s becoming a fad to play “Who’s Your Prez?”. I’m lumping them together now… I suppose the UK Elections could be put in here too, but that’s a more orderly and normal thing. Sort of.

Bolivia deposed Morales. Some folks are claiming it is a coup, others a color revolution. Communist leader out, Temp Pres in, elections soon.

Chile has arrested over 3500 people after a bus fare hike prompted protests, but so far no political changes at the top.

Argentina is trying the Leftist approach again after their election last month. That’s not likely to go well.

Venezuela is continuing with their 2 Presidents thing…

USA: And of course here in the USA we have our own little Coup Plot. So far trying to do it via a Kangaroo Court process. But you just know the Dims are in it to go all the way, evidence or not, crime or not. One hopes they are bright enough to realize a Senate Trial on this right in the middle of re-election time will not go well for them…

There’s rumors of actual indictments ‘soon’, but still waiting for that first big Perp Walk of the Deep State.

Snow Season

Looks like a chunk of Europe is getting the big snow dump. Meters of the stuff in the Alps.

Alaska to Colorado getting the treatment, then it will move into the mid-west.

The Grand Solar Minimum is bringing a lot of snow. Probably time to revisit glacier growth.

Ebola Watch

Yeah, it is still “a thing” even if not top of the non-news MSM.


Down to only 11 new cases and 4 more dead, so likely this is the last time I’ll mention it. They ought to drop to zero very soon.

Thanksgiving In The USA

This Thursday is our national holiday of gluttony and sloth. Do not be surprised if not much happens Thursday to Friday…

Enjoy your celebration, or if not having one, enjoy the day of the USA not dominating the news ;-)

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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272 Responses to W.O.O.D. 25 November 2019

  1. E.M.Smith says:

    Does anyone know the location of St. Greta and her Yacht junket? I tried some searches but just get a flood of her trip to New York. I’m just vaguely wondering if they are stuck in a storm…

  2. p.g.sharrow says:

    The Impeachment of President Trump is being counter-productive as a tool to damage Trump’s reelection. So I think that the deep state is looking for a new angle of attack. Meanwhile they fear the shoe dropping on them next. Maybe Damage control concerns them more now. An international crises would be helpful or at least a National one to get the Media’s attention away while the DOJ investigations are reported…pg

  3. H.R. says:

    Re St. Greta – Scroll down and their most recent reported position is shown on a map. I think there are layer options for the map; wind, waves, etc.


  4. Larry Ledwick says:

    Oooops own goal for the Left

  5. YMMV says:

    “the location of St. Greta and her Yacht junket?”
    The link above works, but this one is a bit better. Same graphics, but better, it skips the bloggers.


    “I’m just vaguely wondering if they are stuck in a storm…”
    As well you might, since they set off in the wrong season in the wrong boat and there was a storm, “post-tropical cyclone Sebastian”, which was fast, intense, and going their way.

    I’ve been following them. I must say, I am very impressed. First, the weather gods have been very favorable to them. Second, the hired professional skipper and weather advisors have been very good. They have not had to beat into the wind, the wind (and waves) have been following. Which is good and bad. Less brutal, but more dangerous. Surfing down big waves can lead to control issues, and plowing into the next big wave is particularly bad in a catamaran, since they pitch-pole too easily. But the skipper has kept the boat at a conservative speed.

    Storms all around them, but they have had a great path through them.

    The waves are more dangerous than the wind. I get their location from the above links, then switch over to windy.com to get the other info: waves, thunderstorms, temperature, clouds.

    They are not there yet, but I expect when they get there they will say how great it was.

  6. p.g.sharrow says:

    At bottom of article a tweet that Rudy has set up a “deadman” that has 40 years of Biden files and a RICO chart of that family’s activities. Guess Giuliani fears the ability of the “Dark state” to neutralize their critics…pg

  7. YMMV says:

    Brexit. On the what could possibly go wrong theme,

    Word is that the coming vote is a Brexit referendum, the voters feel strongly about that. About the candidates, not so much. That seems odd to me, with Corbyn going off the deep end. Maybe that free broadband for all promise is a winner ;-)

  8. E.M.Smith says:

    Well darn…
    So the Good Captain has put my schadenfreude on hold for a while longer ;-)

  9. philjourdan says:

    Latest polls are showing support for impeachment dropping, so Pelosi may be looking for an out. But how given her rhetoric? Limbaugh has a scenario she could use. Basically she pulls the proceedings from the floor and blames the nasty republicans in the senate as being as corrupt so incapable of convicting.

    That will not play in Peoria, but it may mollify the base. And save a few seats (as long as their opponents do not bring up the impeachment inquiry vote).

  10. Taz says:

    Asia Times : https://www.asiatimes.com/2019/11/article/not-a-bad-spy-novel-but-a-national-nightmare/

    Whatever one thinks of Donald Trump, the possibility should be horrifying that the world’s oldest continuous democratic constitution might be subverted by a cabal of spies with the support of the major media.

  11. jim2 says:

    Bad News:

    Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito issued a fiery defense of free speech Monday morning as the high court announced it would not hear an appeal from the conservative magazine National Review in a defamation case against it by liberal climate science professor Michael Mann.


  12. p.g.sharrow says:

    From the article TAZ likks to;
    “McCarthy reviews evidence that is still before the courts showing that the FBI set Flynn up in a White House interview, in order to claim that the distinguished general had lied to federal investigators about his contacts with Russians. Flynn’s lawyers have now produced evidence that the charges against him stemmed from an FBI forgery – FBI officials appear to have altered the interview report to put his remarks in an incriminating light. I have written about the CIA’s witch-hunt against Flynn here and in other locations. Flynn’s lawyer Sidney Powell claims that the CIA sandbagged him to stop an audit of its operations – the first audit since its founding.”

    Congress had just begun an investigation of The CIA’s finance when the Clintons entered the Whitehouse. Whistle Blowers had brought up the completion of the largest office building in the world for the CIA, “PAID in FULL” with no government authorization or appropriation. Plus the discovered existence of off the books CIA bank accounts of over $6 Billion. All of that disappeared with the new Administration. …pg

  13. Larry Ledwick says:

    Well looks like Denver is determined to go down the “woke” path to ruin.
    Lots of shoe string small businesses and businesses which depend on entry level workers will be going out of business or shifting to automation in the next 3 years.


  14. Larry Ledwick says:
  15. E.M.Smith says:

    Electromagnetic elevators? What were they smoking? Wonder how well they do after a nearby EMP event in a nuclear exchange…

    Then they have a steel hull with a lot of flexure? That’s not something you can fix without laying a new hull or making this one way heavier with after the fact bracing metal.

    I just hope they “learned a lot” about what not to do in the future…

    Ship building is an art based on centuries of experience. It isn’t something that lends itself well to “bright ideas” and “disruptive technology”. Fighting ships are more so…

    I’d not want to take an overly flexible hull into a Pacific Cyclone… (shades of W.W.II)

  16. E.M.Smith says:

    Oh, and per the $16 / hr. minimum wage:

    It never ceases to amaze me how many people can think that they can legislate Economics. The Law Of Supply And Demand is not subject to ordinances.

    Raise the cost, the demand will drop.

    That means more folks out of work. If I had any business that didn’t NEED to be in the city (i.e. not food service or some similar on site immediate consumption) I’d be looking at relocating just outside the city limits. Then, for all those folks who now buy a $5 lunch at a fast food place: When that turns into an $9 lunch, you will find a whole lot more “sack lunches” happening.

    I have watched this happen here in California. I used to just hit fast food places on trips to L.A. or out of State. Now my first stop is a bulk discount grocery for a loaf of bread, package of sandwich meat, and condiment. Plus a $5 flat of water and bag of ice. I then live on sandwiches (and whatever fruit I bought – usually bananas) until they run out. Cost is way less, product just as satisfying. Somewhere about Texas is when I’ve usually used it up. THEN I make my first fast food stops for a $5 to $6 tag (vs about $9 here last time I tried it.)

    Net is that a whole lot less of my money goes into Fast Food places in California, Arizona and New Mexico.

    We used to get KFC every couple of months, sometimes every week or two. Now it’s more like once a year. I make pretty darned good fried chicken and at about $30 for a bucket, I can beat that by a lot. About $20 to $25 of a lot… So now we only do KFC if there isn’t a chance to get home first.

    I’ve noticed that there are fewer fast food places around now and several restaurants I used to go to have closed up.

    Similarly, it’s been a couple of years since we went to the movies. After paying something like $6 for a bad hot-dog and $4 for a coke, we decided it just wasn’t worth it. I bought a big screen TV and streaming movie service instead. Now we get a nice home cooked dinner with our movies… for less cost.

    Supply and Demand. Immutable.

  17. Larry Ledwick says:

    Efforts underway to develop rare earth processing capacity in America – Hmmm where have I heard talk of increased demand triggering new development?


  18. Power Grab says:

    Anybody here ever had their car stolen…then found by the police after several days?

    It’s not my car. The police said the car is “drivable” and has been towed and is being held for the owner who is out of state until Friday.

    I was wondering if there are hidden gotchas that a person should look for in a case like this.

    I guess it didn’t go to a chop shop. It might have been grabbed for a joy ride since it was taken from a school.

    Anyone want to regale us with their adventures in the Land of Car Theft Victim?

  19. Another Ian says:

    For the Vitamin D discussion


    “Likely in the general direction of away”

  20. Larry Ledwick says:

    Put this one under plant trivia – method to improve germination and growth of seeds planted in salty soils.

    (similar to inoculating alfalfa but uses a coating)
    They don’t really explain how it solves the high saline issue other that getting the seed to germinate faster and develop better roots.


  21. Another Ian says:


    “China Ramps Up Rare Earth Production to Maintain Its Global Chokehold”


  22. H.R. says:

    @Power Grab – I’ve never had a car stolen, which I believe speaks to desirability of the cars I have owned ;o)

    I do keep an eye on my F-250 tow vehicle, even though it’s a 2005. A good truck like that, regardless of age, would be in a chop shop or somewhere in Mexico before I could get the police on the line.

  23. E.M.Smith says:


    Daughter had a $2000 “do over” Honda Civic for a couple of years. Car “had issues” mostly minor. It was a re-paint, had been in an accident and repaired, and the bottom pan under the trunk was a bit wrinkled (why straighten what isn’t seen?) but was very drivable. Figured “fine for a high school kid” especially if just learned and might get re-bent… She loved it. Did it’s job.

    One day, it just isn’t there anymore. WT? Someone picked it up and ran off with it. Damn. But “Oh Well”, only a beater… We’d gotten $2000 of use out of it already.

    About a day later, call from the police: Car found by side of road about 10 miles away.

    NOT towed, so no expense, just “Your car was reported stolen, it’s parked here”.

    We went. No damage. Licence plate in the trunk. Put the plate back on and drove it home. No costs involved.

    Our best guess is some professional theft ring picked it up (as it was of the desirable Honda easy steal type) and was busy putting the plate in the trunk a ways away when they noticed it wasn’t “pristine”. Realized they would NOT be getting a lot of money from a “beater” with a history of repair / repaint, and dumped it to try again…

    That’s our experience. She drove the car a few more years after that then bought a new Honda after her first professional job.

  24. Power Grab says:

    @ HR:

    The newest vehicle I ever owned was 5 years old when I bought it. The one I hit the deer with was 16 years old when I bought it and then drove it for 12 years. So, yeah, I totally understand how driving undesirable cars can work for you. That is a feature, not a bug, in my book! ;-)

    It’s helpful to know that an F-250 could be a temptation to a thief. Thanks!

  25. E.M.Smith says:

    Per “Rare Earths”:

    Do remember that there is nothing “rare” about the elements in “rare earths”. It was only those particular “earths” (or ores or kind of dirt) that was “rare”. The actual elements are not that rare. Monzanite sands, for example.

    Monazite is a reddish-brown phosphate mineral containing rare-earth metals. It occurs usually in small isolated crystals. It has a hardness of 5.0 to 5.5 on the Mohs scale of mineral hardness and is relatively dense, about 4.6 to 5.7 g/cm3. There are at least four different kinds of monazite, depending on relative elemental composition of the mineral:[3]

    monazite-(Ce), (Ce, La, Nd, Th)PO4 (the most common member),
    monazite-(La), (La, Ce, Nd)PO4,
    monazite-(Nd), (Nd, La, Ce)PO4,
    monazite-(Sm), (Sm, Gd, Ce, Th)PO4.

    The elements in parentheses are listed in the order of their relative proportion within the mineral: lanthanum is the most common rare-earth element in monazite-(La), and so forth. Silica (SiO2) is present in trace amounts, as well as small amounts of uranium and thorium. Due to the alpha decay of thorium and uranium, monazite contains a significant amount of helium, which can be extracted by heating.

    Monazite is an important ore for thorium, lanthanum, and cerium. It is often found in placer deposits. India, Madagascar, and South Africa have large deposits of monazite sands. The deposits in India are particularly rich in monazite.

    We also have it around the Carolinas. It’s sort of all over. Why don’t we use it? Because folks are paranoid about the word “radioactive”. Never mind that the Potassium 40 in your body is as much of a risk… So if you extract the “rare earth elements” you are left with a Thorium rich “mine tailing” that is slightly radioactive.

    In any sane world we would just run that through a CANDU or MSR reactor and use it to make electricity, but instead it becomes a Giant Bureaucratic Minefield Of Paranoia. So NOBODY will touch mining the Monzanite sands in the USA. (India is doing fine with it, thanks, and is ready to ramp up their Thorium breeder program).

    Note that Thorium was used in “Coleman Lantern” mantels up until about the 1980s when IIRC Cerium was substituted (and the light got a little bit yellower IMHO). Again from folks paranoid about a tiny degree of radioactivity. Here’s a bit of history. Note the number of places scattered all over the globe. I’ve bolded some bits.:

    Mining history

    Postcard view of a monazite mine in Shelby, North Carolina, showing cart tracks and a bridge

    Monazite sand from Brazil was first noticed in sand carried in ship’s ballast by Carl Auer von Welsbach in the 1880s. Von Welsbach was looking for thorium for his newly invented incandescent mantles. Monazite sand was quickly adopted as the thorium source and became the foundation of the rare-earth industry.

    Monazite sand was also briefly mined in North Carolina, but, shortly thereafter, extensive deposits in southern India were found. Brazilian and Indian monazite dominated the industry before World War II, after which major mining activity transferred to South Africa. There are also large monazite deposits in Australia.

    Monazite was the only significant source of commercial lanthanides, but concern over the disposal of the radioactive daughter products of thorium, bastnäsite came to displace monazite in the production of lanthanides in the 1960s due to its much lower thorium content. Increased interest in thorium for nuclear energy may bring monazite back into commercial use.

    IIRC much of the Chinese supply is as a side product from a particular kind of iron ore (some metal ore…). Essentially a waste product stream.

    So in summary: There is NO shortage of “Rare Earth Elements”, just a shortage of a particular kind of rare earth ore. We can be drowning in the stuff if we start using Thorium as nuclear fuel.

  26. Power Grab says:

    @ EM:

    Thanks for the reply. Theft by a professional ring is a possibility I hadn’t thought of!

    My friend’s car is a Toyota and about the size of a Honda Civic. Maybe that would be a Corolla? I think it was their newest vehicle.

  27. E.M.Smith says:

    FWIW they are likely to charge “Storage Fees” for the car as it was towed. That can be in the $hundred / day ranging in abusive places. Your friend might want to send an agent to get the car out of hock early. At least ask about it…

    Toyota and Honda are two of the big names for professional theft rings. Fairly easy to steal, hard to trace (broad and deep market both for cars and parts, and “blue Honda Civic” or “brown Toyota” covers a few million cars… so hard to spot the stolen one with the plate off). Plus a lot of folks won’t put the money in to try and find a $3000 car where a $80,000 “one of a kind” Mercedes or Porsche IS going to stand out.

  28. Taz says:


    One of my favorite memes. You just know many involved with these things are not ideological. They do it for the screams.

  29. Power Grab says:

    @ EM:

    Thanks! I will tell my friend to ask about storage fees.

  30. Larry Ledwick says:

    Looks like German farmers may have learned something from the dutch farmers.
    Large tractor-cade apparently in route to the big city (Berlin) to give the political types a piece of their mind.

  31. Larry Ledwick says:

    From RT

  32. E.M.Smith says:


    Oh, that’s a good one!


    Just yesterday saw a video (2030 Ice Age Farmer? something like that) which pointed out the EU Ag commissioner? said the EU was losing 1000 farmers PER DAY. Didn’t post it as an article as he was a bit too, erm, “Doom In Our Day” about it. But here’s a link:

    So yeah, I can see the EU farmers being collectively pissed. 365,000 of your neighbors gone per year, for several years?

  33. jim2 says:

    Here’s another news site for your consideration …


    It’s videos. Some are anti-Trump, but I’ve noticed the pro-Trump ones have hundreds of up-votes.

  34. Ed Forbes says:

    On take out in ca, I also have cut way back. Takeout now generally consists of fried chicken from Winco, about $8 for 12 baked/fried legs/thigh. $9 for a McDonalds burger meal is nuts. It is hard to justify a takeout hamburger for the cost of a choice ribeye steak.

  35. Power Grab says:

    @ EM:

    I mentioned the storage charges issue to my friends.I sent them a URL for an article about that issue in their own town.

    The spouse got the car out of storage after I mentioned storage charges. They had to pay $170 cash to get the car back. That sounds like 1.7 days’ worth of storage to me…

    The car had been smoked in, and not just cigarettes. All the documents were missing from the glove compartment (where you’re supposed to keep your actual title/registration now)…grrr…

    The car started right up and runs fine.

    They found a gun in the back seat. It turned out to be a BB gun. They went back to the police to turn that in. I guess the police didn’t notice it before.

    Their insurance company wants them to have it completely inspected.

    They will have to get it re-keyed.

    It needs a good detail job.

    Since they haven’t yet had it re-keyed, and there was no key with it when it was found, they have parked it across town at a friend’s place.

  36. jim2 says:

    “Monazite was the only significant source of commercial lanthanides, but concern over the disposal of the radioactive daughter products of thorium, bastnäsite came to displace monazite in the production of lanthanides in the 1960s due to its much lower thorium content.”

    What with Monazite sand blowing around, I’m a bit surprised at the concern about the leftovers. It seems the waste could have actually been sequestered better that in sand.

    So, this may be more a sign of our times than a real problem.

    Click to access report.pdf

    Kind of like mercury …

    Although it is difficult to accurately quantify global mercury emissions, it has been estimated that natural sources account for between 40-65% of the total global mercury released annually

    Click to access nawtec01-07.pdf

  37. Larry Ledwick says:

    A little personal context for this item. In 1965 I was in the hospital for many weeks after being hit by a car. It was boring but every day near noon I would tune into Paul Harvey on the radio and listen to his broadcast. I suspect a large part of my political beliefs were carved by him over that year or so.

    I remember this and similar broadcasts very fondly. I must have absorbed it well. In high school I gave an extemporaneous speech (debate team and extemporaneous speaking were the events I participated in during speech competitions.) The highest compliment I ever received from a speech judge during those competitions was the time after my speech the judge told me I reminded her of Paul Harvey in how I delivered the speech.

  38. Larry Ledwick says:

    I shouldn’t laugh, but we have all been there – the real world is a great educator, although sometimes it has to repeat the lessons a few times.

  39. Larry Ledwick says:

    In a less jovial note, folks talk about gators in Florida, looks like the Feral Hogs in Texas need to be added to that list of dangerous wildlife, (yes we all knew they were dangerous but this item reports a confirmed fatal attack on someone who was not hunting them.

    Location is just outside Houston on the gulf coast.


    Just to show the magnitude of the problem in some areas.

  40. E.M.Smith says:

    @Ed Forbes:

    Exactly! When I can get a package of about 5 pounds of chicken parts for under 5 bucks, toss them in flour with poultry seasoning, and lay them in a frying pan of oil for 20 minutes and have a “bucket” of great home pan fried chicken, tell me again why I want to pay $9 for a MacNothin ?

    In Florida, Publics Supermarket has very good fried chicken. We’d regularly get a box of it ;-) I’ve forgotten the price, but it was not expensive.


    Why do they need to get it re-keyed? Were the keys stolen? Usually they just pick the locks or bypass them…

    I’d be more worried that the paperwork means they know the home address and can plan a burglary (or try Identity Theft).


    One of the dirty little lies of the anti-nuke crowd is that statement that nuclear waste must be stored for 20,000 years (or more). That is to reach “background level” of radiation. BUT, the original ore when dug from the dirt was not at “background”. IF you only wait until it is back at the level of radioactivity of the original ore, it’s about 300 years.

    Basically the “waste disposal” standard requires making uranium ore into something less radioactive than in nature.

    There’s a lot of things like that. Radium in basements. Arsenic and other heavy metals from nature. Heck, I’m surrounded by mountains full of serpentine rocks. They shed fibers of asbestos into the local streams. In theory, you would be required to wear bunny suits in the hills… but that’s natural.


    It is the state rock of California, USA and the California Legislature specified that serpentine was “the official State Rock and lithologic emblem.” In 2010, a bill was introduced which would have removed serpentine’s special status as state rock due to it potentially containing chrysotile asbestos. The bill met with resistance from some California geologists, who noted that the chrysotile present is not hazardous unless it is mobilized in the air as dust.

    So it’s only a problem if the rock is crushed… or weathered…. I’ve sat on a small boulder of it as someone talked about the problem of asbestos in homes… No, I didn’t tell them ;-)

    @Larry L:

    Hogs are not just a rural problem (nor are coyotes or mountain lions).

    A few years back I went “pigging” with a friend who was working on her Masters. We’d trap, weigh, inspect and tag feral hogs. Pickup, dart gun, live cage traps, weighing hoist, the whole 9 yards…

    Well, the place we did this was a park on the edge of the urban area. Part of the reason was folks complaining about their lawns being torn up, their gardens worked over, and the golf course getting ripped up. All places folks like to be in the suburbs.

    On one occasion a fella about 250 lbs woke up a bit sooner than expected. We all hopped in the truck bed as he circled the truck, pissed. THEN realized the tranquilizer gun was laying on the seat in the cab. Ooops. We were discussing who was going to try to distract the hog while whom jumped down into the cab when sir hog decided to leave…

    Were I doing that now, I’d want a backup piece on my hip. Had we not been really fast at the leap into the truck, or had the hog been better at getting feet up on the tailgate, things could have been a lot worse. Feral hogs have their tusks, farmed hogs have them removed.

    Near Palo Alto (Stanford University, SLAC linear accelerator) a lady out jogging was attacked by a mountain lion. Near Sacramento, folks have reported pets missing and have seen a mountain lion. Near Los Angeles a mountain lion was found stalking folks on a bike path. There are coyote packs now observed in some of the cities at night, hunting. San Jose is one of them. On some nights you can hear them in the surrounding areas howling at night.

    The simple truth is that the wild predators are quite happy to work suburbs and even cities, if that’s what it takes. They had learned to stay out due to hunting pressure. As that has been removed, they are learning it is now safe to enter.

    Folks like to laugh at the videos of a bear family taking a dip in the suburban swimming pool, but forget that bears can be top predators if hungry. A household door is only a suggestion to a bear. I’ve seen black bear in the hills of Saratoga (where the rich folks live overlooking Silicon Valley) and where there’s a couple of wineries.

    The anti-gun crowd will continue to “not get it” right up until someone they know gets munched, then they will start to catch clue.

  41. Power Grab says:

    @ EM:

    The perps got the key. I think the owner’s keys were dropped on the floor of the school without their knowledge and the perps took the car key/fob.

    I am also very concerned about their having the owner’s name and home address and the possibility of identity theft.

    Anther thing that I am concerned about is whether the car was used in a crime because of the fact that a gun was found in the car. It wasn’t the owner’s gun.

    This family knows gangs of school kids run rampant in this town. I myself heard of a drive-by shooting that their 13yo daughter “knew” was going to happen that night(!)

    The next question I wanted to raise was whether a person wouldn’t be prudent to replace the car if it had been used in a crime. I’m guessing they might have used the gun to threaten or rob the source of the drugs they consumed while in the car. In a town like that, I don’t think it’s out of the question to assume that the drug dealer would seek revenge by vandalizing the car.

    What do you all think of that issue (replacing the car to forestall being a continuing target of possible gang revenge)?

  42. Larry Ledwick says:

    Yes we have coyotes that work the fields near my apartment complex. You often can hear them yipping to tell the rest of the crew dinner was about ready.

    A couple years ago a resident of the apartment complex was out walking her bite sized dog, and a coyote came up and took it right off the leash. Bears come down into the suburbs in the fall, as well as occasional juvenile mountain lions in the fall trying to establish new hunting grounds.

    Then you have the deer I see occasionally at night (or their tracks in the snow in the morning) and now periodically a moose finds their way into the metro suburbs as the introduced moose gradually return to their historical range in Colorado.




  43. jim2 says:

    PG – Sounds like the answer is to move to somewhere else.

  44. cdquarles says:

    And now you know the rest of the story ;p.

    Per stolen car, here is my story: In all of my years, I have had just one car stolen, even though I have left the keys in one a few times and even with the engine running. That one was when we were away from home and the car was jacked by a tow truck operator. It was never found, so likely ended up in a chop shop. Local recyclers won’t take cars now, unless you have a legal bill of sale or a title (not that those can’t be counterfeited).

  45. Larry Ledwick says:

    What is the back story on the Eddie Gallagher (Navy Seal) case?
    Just like the actions against the President, the Media and the DeepState weasels are well represented when you know the back story.


  46. Larry Ledwick says:

    The next question I wanted to raise was whether a person wouldn’t be prudent to replace the car if it had been used in a crime.

    That is certainly a possibility based on your outline of events. At the very least I would go to DMV and have new plates issued. If the car has obvious visual clues make some cosmetic changes so a casual observer would see it as a different car.

    It all comes down to your personal evaluation of the local gang ecology and all that, but if seriously worried, yes I would make at least some simple changes, like different wheel covers, so it looks different, maybe window tint film or a bumper sticker that was not on there before.

  47. H.R. says:

    It just occurred to me that around my neck of the woods, muh’ther truck is not a euphemism for a nasty epithet. It’s used to refer to a vehicle up on blocks out in the front yard.

    “I gotta git muh’ther truck runnin’ one uh these days. Gotta haul some farwood for the Winter.”

  48. E.M.Smith says:

    I’d not worry about the crime angle.

    It was reported stolen so no liability. A BB gun isn’t a gang weapon. More a highschool idiot prop. Pull that on a drug dealer you will not get drugs…

    Worst case I can see is they may have pretended to be a drive by, since at distance you can’t tell it’s a nothing.

    If they are fond of the car, or your State taxes car sales heavily, I’d keep it. If it is just transportation or they want something different, sell it and trade up. Rekeying can get expensive depending on model and method. Some electronic fobs run $ Hundreds each. Simple key lockset swap by a locksmith can be fairly cheap.

    My guess, given the story, is a highschool kid found the key, went joyriding while getting high, then forgot to take his toy gun with him… I’d put more effort into a home burglar alarm with loud noisemaker… maybe a front and back motion light too. Kid might be tempted to try a burglary next and knows the address.

    For me, I’d park it back at the house with a camera pointed at it and the battery out of it…
    then wait :-)

    When they get in the car (seen on the TV…) walk out with a rifle slung on the shoulder and baseball bat in hand… I doubt they would stay, or ever return…. (just be sure to stay on your side of the sidewalk. In many jurisdictions, the sidewalk and parkway are “public” and while you can be armed on your dirt, being armed “in public” has issues…)

    But I’m a surly curmudgeon sort :-)

    Oh, and if the battery is too heavy for convenience, just take the wire from coil to distributor…

  49. Larry Ledwick says:

    Looks like President Trump is tweaking the tail of the Media – posted this 3 hours ago.
    Championship belt – is he signaling the title match is about to start??

  50. Larry Ledwick says:

    And – – – the Washington post goes full stupid.

    Comments to their tweet are hilarious. The major media need to head over to the nearest hospital and get a sense of humor transplant ASAP.

  51. Power Grab says:

    @ EM:

    Thanks again. I wasn’t worried about the cops causing trouble, but whoever the other parties were that may have had the gun pointed at them.

    I will bring up the subject of an alarm system and camera. And baiting the trap….

    I found out this morning that the owner wants to replace the car with something else.

    Since Hondas and Toyotas such prime targets for car thieves (and easy to steal), what other makes/models would be less attractive and harder to take?

    I would suggest the 1991 Buick Century like I used to have. It had door locks that were not in the usual location. They were down just above the arm rest. One time when I needed to ask the cops to unlock it for me, they had lots of trouble. Their usual tools didn’t work. I’m sure they spent 15-20 minutes trying. I finally had to go back inside my building and get a wire coat hanger.

    Thanks again for the tip about storage charges. I reckon that advice saved them hundreds of dollars!

  52. Larry Ledwick says:

    Do a google search on 10 most stolen cars to get a list of cars to avoid if car theft is an issue where they live. Certain car brands get pushed up the list both by local demands (performance cars in the import community or trucks) and also by how easy they are to steal and fence parts.

    Odds are local media have run such stories several times in the last couple years.

    Certain trucks and SUV’s are very popular targets for immediate covert export to Mexico and Latin America for example.



  53. Another Ian says:

    “Delingpole: RIP Clive James – Poet, Broadcaster And, More Importantly, Climate Sceptic”


  54. Power Grab says:

    I did find this interesting page:


    It doesn’t include getting a car with a manual transmission, but I saw that suggestion elsewhere.

  55. Larry Ledwick says:

    One of the first screening methods car thieves use is to look in the car to see if there is a flashing light that might indicate some sort of an alarm which is armed. The sell very cheap LED flashing lights that you can use to spook off random target of opportunity thieves.


    As mentioned earlier you can install some sort of kill switch so the car does not start.
    You can install a high current switch in the battery cable (means you have to open the hood to activate it – big pain) also easily bypassed if they can get the hood open.
    There are remote master kill switches available too.


    You can install an ignition kill switch (depends on how the car is wired, modern electronic ignition systems may be more difficult to break the ignition as they quite often have coil on plug etc.)

    You can install a fuel pump kill switch that breaks the power lead to the electrical fuel pump. This makes it a crank no start issue so they will think the car is not drive able and gives the audible warning that the car is cranking.

    Simple low cost imobilizer setups are available short of a full on car alarm.


    There are lots of cheap low end car alarms, although may not be highly reliable (false trigger issues etc.) but costs are comparable to even simple kill switch setups.


  56. Larry Ledwick says:

    Some interesting bits on wild pigs


    Looks like we have a few in Colorado but so far not enough to be a pressing problem.

    You want to go hunting looks like most states have pretty much a shoot on sight attitude.
    Unregulated here in Colorado – considered an invasive species that threatens wild life populations and people.


    And a bit of hog hunts gone wrong

  57. Larry Ledwick says:

    Range of wild pigs in the US

    Currently their range is expanding north out of Texas at between 6.5 and 12.6 km per year.


    Looks like in my life time they will be into central Colorado, the are already in extreme south east part of the state near NE New Mexico and Texas/Okla pan handle ares.


  58. E.M.Smith says:

    @Power Grab:

    Always happy to reduce fees, for anyone anywhere :-)

    @Larry L:

    Once an area gets a feral pig problem, they rapidly learn hunting them is about the only thing that works. Eventually this will cause States with gun bans to suffer…

  59. Larry Ledwick says:

    Yep like bambi in the north east the deer are becoming huge pests and hazards to drivers because their is no hunting or predator control.

    Pigs are cute until one of them chases you out of your own back yard with intent to kill.

  60. E.M.Smith says:

    Oh, and notice how completely California is covered in green on that map. Yeah, lots of pigs…

    They are a significant problem and can be lethal. If I lived in farm country, I’d open carry a .357 around the farm. You may never see any for years, then a pack shows up and tears up the place, including any animals they can catch.

    I didn’t fully understand it until I was “treed” in the back of the pickup. Had I been on the ground I would have been gored and bitten by 6 inch tusks. He REALLY wanted to get to us.

    It ought to be open carry anywhere there are hogs and year round hunting, no license, no limits, any means or methods.

  61. rhoda klapp says:

    So, what kind of firepower is necessary and sufficient to put down a hog or a bear and not just piss them off? Not that it matters to me in Oxfordshire, but it’s fun to speculate.

  62. E.M.Smith says:

    Hogs have a very tough “Gristle plate” around their shoulders and front of neck, then they have a very thick sloped armor like skull. A couple of inches thick gristle evolved over millions of years of tusk fighting each other. For that reason, the MINIMUM generally agreed on is a .357 Magnum with a penetrating bullet type (i.e. NOT a 110 grain high velocity hollow point that blows up in the first couple of inches, but more like a FMJ or a 147 grain truncated cone)

    Roughly the same applies to Black Bears (the smaller ones found outside Alaska and Canada).

    For the HogZilla hybrid super-hogs and Grizzly (Brown Bear) or Polar Bear, you need a hunting rifle with about a .308 NATO or equivalent preferred. The AR-15 in .223 Remington / 5.56 NATO is good for the black bear / regular hogs, but might be marginal unless you dump a few round in on the big ones. I’d be willing to try it if that’s what I had, but I’d be sure with the .30 caliber military rounds of W.W.II and their derivatives. (i.e. .303 British ought to be fine too)

    FWIW, the .357 SIg is almost the same power as the .357 Mag and you can put a good number of rounds in the gun, more in a second clip. What I’d actually wear, were it allowed, is just that. A high capacity .357 Sig with heavy hard bullets in it. Fairly light so I’d actually carry it, but “just enough” as there are no brown or white bears down here and so far there’s only been one HogZilla so I’m willing to chance that ;-)

    BTW, also works for gators ;-) and mountain lions.

    In the UK, I’d use a shotgun with a solid sabot slug in 12 gauge. It’s “enough gun” but for many of them you would need to rapid reload…

  63. Larry Ledwick says:

    In addition to the center fires mentioned above the Lever actions in 30-30 or .45-70 are good choices for a “pickup gun”.
    Lot’s of folks hunt them with 12 ga shotgun, preferably one of the tactical autoloaders with the full tube magazine like the Mossberg 730 tactical (9 +1)

    mossberg 730

    Preferably with a dangerous game slug or 3″ magnum 000 buck.

    Pistols – I second the .357 magnum with 158 grain truncated cone like the highway patrol used to carry, or .40 S&W, or if stuck with a 9mm use the Hydra-shok or hyrda-shok deep round.
    .45 ACP if you are old school with hot loads.



  64. E.M.Smith says:

    Hmmmm… Larry has reminded ne the 147 gr is usually a 9mm bullet and 158 gr is the usual .38 / .357 bullet. I get 147 gr. and load them myself… similar to these
    but not match grade.

    No, I don’t care about the 0.002 inch difference. The bullet gets explosively formed to the bbl grooves in the forcing cone anyway, and my Ruger pisol accepts both 9mm and .38/.357 cyls. Just Fine and you don’t change the bbl. :-)

    In any case, you want heavy, hard, and fast…

  65. Larry Ledwick says:

    German Farmers tractor protest shut down the city traffic in the capital.


  66. Another Ian says:

    E.M. Some vert fast jet streams floating around. See this comment and subsequent


  67. Larry Ledwick says:

    @Another Ian says:
    28 November 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Very interesting!

    The recent snowstorm that hit Colorado and is now drifting out north east into the great lakes region was very much typical of late December storms. It was not quite as strong as the blizzard of 1982 here in Denver but the setup was very similar.

    In the blizzard of 1982 the low pressure center set up near Springfield Colorado (extreme south east Colorado,) and pumped moist air up into the Denver metro basin to create the blizzard. This recent storm the low set up between La Junta and Lamar (just a bit farther to the north) but was not quite as well organized or probably not as low a pressure as during the blizzard of 1982.

    During that storm the metro area got about 2 ft of snow with drifts to 5 ft in some places. This storm only dropped 12 -18 inches but hit the Ft Collins area north of Denver harder.

    A bit of history on our blizzard storms.


  68. Larry Ledwick says:

    Interesting summary of the antibiotic resistant bacteria problem by Zerohedge


    Raises some interesting questions about buying pork at walmart and the value of copper for sick room equipment.

  69. Larry Ledwick says:

    The master showing how to completely own the media, toss them red meat, distract them with something they want to believe, and quietly do something else and don’t tell them until you are done.

  70. Larry Ledwick says:

    Scientist with impeccable credentials in climate modeling says the models are crap for long term forecasting. He basically confirms the primary arguments the skeptical climate community have been claiming for 10 – 20 years now.


    His new book (currently appears to only be available in Japanese)
    The Global Warming Hypothesis is an Unproven Hypothesis
    Dr. Mototaka Nakamura

  71. E.M.Smith says:

    Born at about 11:30 PM. 9 lb baby girl grandaughter. Quite the Thanksgiving day…

    Now everyone can get some sleep for the first time in 2 days :-^)

  72. Larry Ledwick says:

    Congratulations hope Mom and baby are doing well!

  73. H.R. says:

    9 pounds?!? That’s very healthy, full term sounding baby to me. That’s great!

    That’s the whole joy of having grandkids, E.M. You get to tell them all those stories of, “When I was your age…” Speaking of which, are you gonna tell them about your pet dinosaur? ;o)

  74. Larry Ledwick says:

    Well @another Ian’s comments about the jet stream – Colorado will have some interesting weather today and tomorrow.

    Currently 21 deg F with heavy fog and visibility about 1/4 mile, forecast for light snow this morning then we are under a high wind warning this evening into tomorrow with winds gusting to 65 mph and rising temps due to the Chinook winds with temps reaching around 40 deg F by 4 am tomorrow.

    Will be interesting to see how low the jet streams are tomorrow morning.

    Windy(dot)com says winds at ground level will be nearly dead calm until around 6 pm tonight. (North Am model) – the European model does not forecast the high winds tomorrow morning.

    Of course the one thing I am still trying to figure out on windy(dot)com is how to interpret the winds that are below ground level ;) since I am at almost 6000 ft the plots apparently do not take actual physical terrain into consideration (at least on the altitude slider) but you can see the effects of the terrain in the wind fields.

    At 5 am it is forecasting 24 mph winds with gusts to 64 mph at 5000 ft elevation here just a few miles east of the flatirons above Boulder Colorado. At 6400 ft elevation (about 500 ft above true ground surface) it is forecasting 39 mph winds with gusts to 63 mph.
    The high wind warning was issued at 3:00 am this morning (weather radio went off) the good news is that this area experiences hurricane force winds fairly often, so blow down of trees and such due to these down slope wind events is relatively rare compared to the same sort of winds in other locations. Just a mile east of my place I have personally experienced winds of 80+ mph with 110 mph gusts.
    (winds were strong enough that light planes at the Rocky Mountain Metro Airport were literally flying on their tie downs with wheels hovering a few inches off the tarmac, and one plane pulled out its tie downs and got slammed into the ground when it got blown over backwards still tied down at the tail.

    National Weather Service Denver CO
    836 AM MST Fri Nov 29 2019

    Larimer County Below 6000 Feet/Northwest Weld County-
    Boulder And Jefferson Counties Below 6000 Feet/West Broomfield
    Including the cities of Fort Collins, Hereford, Loveland, Nunn,
    Arvada, Boulder, Golden, Lakewood, and Longmont
    836 AM MST Fri Nov 29 2019


    * WHAT…For the High Wind Warning, northwest winds 30 to 40 mph
    with gusts up to 65 mph expected. For the Dense Fog Advisory,
    visibility one quarter to one half mile in dense fog.

    * WHERE…Larimer County Below 6000 Feet/Northwest Weld County
    and Boulder and Jefferson Counties Below 6000 Feet/West
    Broomfield County.

    * WHEN…For the High Wind Warning, from 8 PM this evening to 6
    PM MST Saturday. For the Dense Fog Advisory, until 11 AM MST
    this morning.

    * IMPACTS…For the High Wind Warning, strong winds will blow
    around unsecured objects. Tree limbs could be blown down and a
    few power outages may result. Travel will be difficult for
    high profile vehicles. For the Dense Fog Advisory, hazardous
    driving conditions exist due to low visibility.


    Strong winds may lead to property damage. Hazardous driving
    conditions due to powerful cross winds will pose a serious risk
    for drivers, especially for light weight and high profile
    vehicles. Loose outdoor items should be brought inside or secured

    If driving, slow down, use your headlights, and leave plenty of
    distance ahead of you.



  75. Larry Ledwick says:

    Looks like London just had another knifing incident on London Bridge.

  76. Larry Ledwick says:

    Appears the guy had a fake bomb vest on which is the probable reason for him being dispatched by gunfire after being disarmed.


  77. jim2 says:

    Hourly grid monitor (beta)

    Coal and nuclear are producing about the same amount now.


  78. Larry Ledwick says:

    Educating Liberals
    21 minutes ago
    China just announced they would allow rice imports from the U.S. for the first time in their history.
    Read that again.
    Trump just sold rice to CHINA.


  79. philjourdan says:

    Congratulations to the Smith Clan!

  80. jim2 says:

    Congrats on the new addition!

  81. Larry Ledwick says:

    Hmmm a bit of background on Seth Rich and the DNC “hack”


    Meanwhile investigative journalists point fingers at Soros and Clinton for bribing women to lie about sexual attacks by Trump.
    Also Soros buys large block of shares in New York Times – was this an a move to control its coverage so it is consistent with Soros’s political goals?


    The breadth of the efforts against President Trump is just stunning, we are talking billions of dollars expended and a small army of partisan hacks trying to take him down. The size and persistence of this coup attempt is just completely off the charts.


    This is going to be written about by historians for 100 years if President Trump can survive this onslaught. If he loses the communist left will bury this and twist all the evidence. They are already trying to do this by trying to frame resistance to President Trump and impeachment as the “patriotic thing to do”.

  82. Another Ian says:

    “The stupidest man in American politics”


    That’a some challenge!

  83. beththeserf says:

    Congrats to the proud grandfather and grandmother. Anuther intelligent addition to the Smith Family, Hurray!

  84. Larry Ledwick says:

    People often associate great financial success with intelligence. There is no such relationship.

    It is often a matter of having the right connections, being at the right place at the right time, and just being lucky. Out of all the infinite possibilities, it is certain that someone, some where, falls into the right situation at the right time to become enormously wealthy, but once they gain a little financial success their employees combined skills carry the project forward and make them rich in spite of their stupidity in other areas. (for a while)


    He was at the right place at the right time to fill a technological niche, (it was the right time for that idea) and due to his $10 million severance package was able to spawn a useful service that pulled in enormous revenue. But that does not transfer to other domains.

  85. E.M.Smith says:

    @Larry L:

    I’ve seen a lot of that “right place at the right time” here in Silicon Valley. Folks would regularly play “Startup Roulette”. Those that landed at the right start-up early made millions to $Billions. Those that didn’t, didn’t. Not a lot of correlation to skill set, but some.

    Apple Computer paid for my house and 2 kids with my stock options. But I arrived there too late to make $Millions off of it. (In the thousands of employees when I joined). I had enough options at my next company, and was there in the first 200 employees, but they had product issues that had them get to market just a little too late with a product that was stuffed with too many features and a bit too large. Basically “my success” hung on 1/2 Dozen engineers making the right choices and they didn’t. Time To Market was everything, and they insisted on some “too hard to get right” features that the market didn’t demand.

    From that company, one guy went on to make Tivo and a couple of others founded Ebay. Had I “chatted them up more” I’d likely have gone along as a single digit employee and have a mansion now. But with 2 young kids I went for “money now” as an independent contractor.

    When I got back to the whole Startup Roulette thing, it had moved on. Venture Capital was all going to China. If you made a pitch and did not have a “China Strategy” at least as part of it, you did not get funded. At the same time, large chunks of the Tech surface were dominated by a few giants who wanted to own the space (Think Google buying Paypal and Ebay and ….)

    I cruised some of the old incubator row and (especially during the 2008 downturn) it was mostly for rent signs. Some buildings now Dentists and Hairdressers…

    So a lot of the “right time right place” window, here, has closed.

    There’s still some. But increasingly the new ideas and new products and disruptive tech comes from inside big tech. Think Google “Summer of code” and such. If you are not hooked into the right places, your odds are way lower. I’m sure somewhere there is still the “couple of guys in a garage” going on, but not nearly like the ’70s and ’80s. To some degree, the incubator culture has gone global. Silicon Alley in N,Y., Silicon Delta in China, Silicon Forest in Portland Or. (IIRC), and more. Not a bad thing, really, for the world.

    We still have AMD / Intel duking it out to make the next big leap in CPUs, though increasingly ARM chips are running anything small (and now moving into laptops). I.P. owned by a Japanese company now. RISC-V (out of Berkeley) likely to start taking the very low end from ARM starting about now: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RISC-V

    Then folks like NVidia changing the world of parallel computing / high performance computing. But NVidia isn’t exactly a small company anymore… but it is an example of recent disruptive tech from the valley. A startup not that long ago, mostly making small video cards, now becoming a big deal in AI to machine vision and more. All from using GPU style compute engines as parallel / vector compute units. Now moving to make dedicated hardware for that purpose. (See the Jetson line)

    So there’s still “stuff” happening here. BUT, it also does still depend on who you know and when you land at a place.

  86. E.M.Smith says:

    FWIW, We’ve all caught up on sleep and are more or less over the Thanksgiving Rush too. So doing a bit of a ‘reboot’ on the whole news / politics / reality-reentry thing. ;-)

    I’ll catch up with the comment threads pretty soon and then things will get back to normal.

    FWIW: Mom, Dad, and Baby are all doing great. No problems and all is well.

    I do have a bit of Storm Prep to finish up. I’ve gassed up the cars yesterday (so the “get out of dodge” prep is done – even though I don’t see a need for it) but I’ve not yet done my “Winter check of the car emergency pack”. The bug out bag tends to get “issues” over time. Things used from it, or aged out. Or sometimes the spouse “cleans out the car” and it ends up in the garage… Not an issue so much now that we are pretty much always at home, but… So when Bad Weather Arrives, that’s when I re-check the car bags. It’s amazing what one night in a snow bank in a blizzard 45 years ago will do to your “what equipment and materials are in the car in winter” prep.

    We had snow on Mount Hamilton on Thanksgiving.
    You can see it from all over Silicon Valley. 4265 ft. tall (1300 m) per the wiki. Snow about 1/2 way up it, so 2000 to 3000 ft elevation. Some years it never gets visible snow. On those years it does, it is typically late December or January (mid winter kind of thing) in cold years. Having it on Thanksgiving is very unusual. This is a Very Cold Year so far, and winter has not officially even begun.

    The wiki has a photo with this caption:

    Numerous times each winter temperatures drop low enough for Mount Hamilton (left) to receive as much as a foot of snow for a day or two.

    I think that’s Puff. Sure the temperatures MIGHT get “low enough” several times each winter, and it MIGHT get snow in enough amounts to detect if you are standing there; but what you don’t get is amounts large enough to see “from the valley” for days on end. That’s rare enough for folks to say “Oh, look, Mt. Hamilton got snow!”.

    The wiki goes on to say:

    These mountains are high enough to receive snowfall in the winter, perhaps up to a dozen times. Occasionally, when a cold, wet storm comes in from the Gulf of Alaska or Canada, Mt. Hamilton and the surrounding peaks get significant snowfall. In February 2001, 30 inches (76 cm) of snow fell, and in March 2006, the peak was left with over a foot (30 cm) of snow in one night.

    The National Weather Service has had a cooperative weather station on the summit of Mount Hamilton almost since the time that the Lick Observatory opened. It has provided a glimpse of the extreme weather conditions that occur on the Diablo Range, especially in the winter months.

    Now unpack that a little. So there were two times there was a snow big enough to be noted. One in 2001 and another in 2006. That’s twice out of the last 19+ years. That’s not “up to a dozen times” in a year. That has to be talking about a ‘dusting’ that’s gone before noon.

    So now, in 2019, we’ve got snow, visible for days now, from the Valley 20 some miles away (28 to the Airport) per Google Maps.

    Notice the months they cite: February & March. END of Winter during cold wet years. This is at best early fall.

    From the wiki, record temps in November:

    Record High:  81 F / 27 C
    Average High: 54.8 F / 12.7 C
    Average Low:  42.1 F / 5.6 C
    Record Low:   18 F / -8 C

    As you can see, with an average of 42 F as the LOW, snow in November is a very unusual thing. Then, for it to persist for days means were are very much “below average” since an “average high” in the 50 F range would melt off a shallow bit of snow “right quick”.

    Now, snow in November is NOT unheard of. The wiki goes on to say:

    Average Snow:  0.4 inches / 1 cm

    There’s a whole lot more than 1 cm of snow and it is a lot more visible than a 50 F day would allow. This is a cold and snowy year. This is NOT Global Warming, by any means.

    Those who are ambitious can look at the rest of the precipitation numbers and note that even in the dead of winter the “average precipitation” inches is about the same as the snow inches. Then realize snow inches are fluffy stuff and account for about 1/10 th that depth of “precipitation”. Basically, it may get 3 inches of snow in a month, but that’s 1/3 inch out of 4 inches of total precipitation, so mostly rain. That’s why seeing snow from “down here” for days is unusual as typically the storm that dumps a bit of snow then washes it away with lot of rain. But not this year, so far.

    This is a “watch this space” marker for snow in the mountains. Not just Mt. Hamilton, but the whole Sierra Nevada and Cascades (Oregon and north), then on down to Tejon Pass (Grapevine / I-5 into Los Angeles from the Great Valley). Especially for folks planning a car trip (which is why I’ve watched this space for decades). I’ve been in the snow in all those places ( a couple of times by surprise… thus the car kits and checking chains loaded in winter trips).

    We are having more rain in the valley over the next few days, so it will be particularly interesting to see if Mt Hamilton says white.

    When there’s snow “up there” we get downslope cold air flows to here, and our temperature can be significantly colder than average. FWIW, I think this point may generalize.

    When the atmospheric height shortens during low solar activity (like now) we get more snow on the hills lower down the mountains. That, then, sheds more cold air down into the valleys. Globally. Now look at it in reverse. During times of high atmospheric height, the snow only forms much higher up the mountains (on much smaller areas) or not at all. Then the lowlands around them are not cooled by cold air coming off the mountains (which may be instead having solar heated updrafts) and everything registers higher temps.

    In short: I think “High Cold Places” matter a great deal to the Global Average of Temperatures and change a lot with Solar Cycle, but that is ignored in the climate models and in the Warmista Circles.

  87. Steve C says:

    A warm welcome to the latest addition to the family – as you say, a Thanksgiving to remember! Wonderful news. Half a pound heavier than I was, too (How Dare She!), so she ought to be a fellow thriver.

    The cold is arriving in the UK too, though not quite the sustained Arctic blast much of the US has been getting of late. We’ve had a group of lows pirouetting around over the UK and soaking us for the last week or two (despite the absence of any blocking highs keeping them there), now we get the northerlies. Clear nights are now cooling us off and severasl forecasters (including Piers Corbyn) are predicting a “good” winter. I remember the last truly “good” one as 1962/63 (arrived about a week after Christmas, stayed around ’til mid-March), so 60-year periodicity suggests another one soon. The sunspot minimum heading for a record low (15 spotless days to go for the new record this year!) and IceAgeNow making terrifying reading … anybody would think there’s another IPCC bash due … ;-)

  88. Larry Ledwick says:

    Details of the bridge knife attack in London and the take down of the attacker coming out.

    Unarmed citizens cornered him long enough for the police to take him down.
    Armed with a 5 ft long narwhal tusk pulled off a wall display in a pub, and a fire extinguisher they were able to take away at least one of his knives and pin him to the ground.



  89. E.M.Smith says:

    Now that’s a weapon you don’t see every day… Narwhale tusk, eh?

    Well, ok then, time for The Left to demand the banning of Assault Narwhale Tusk!

    And Assault Fire Extinguishers!

    Very creative thinking, though! Illustrates nicely how anything can become a weapon. Heck, tie a can of soup in a shirt sleeve and swing it… that’ll do damage… “Ban Assault Soup!” “Ban Assault Dress Shirts!”…

    And yes, I’ve watched way too many Jackie Chan movies ! 8-)

  90. E.M.Smith says:

    Well, this is a bummer.

    One of my Roku devices has died. Just doesn’t boot up. No video out and not visible on the network. Swapped power cable. Moved it to a different TV. Still nothing.

    Now I need to figure out how to remove it from accounts.

  91. E.M.Smith says:

    @Larry L:

    Won’t that be a problem for Quantico?….

  92. Larry Ledwick says:

    I don’t know if that SB64 proposal has an escape clause for military or police.

    Looks like no but it does not do exactly what is described above.
    It includes an intent clause about civil disorder but as you know that could be very liberally (pun intended) interpreted by those in power.

    knowing or having reason to know or intending that such training will be employed for use in, or in furtherance of, a civil disorder; or


    Now technically if you train a police officer in defensive tactics like Krav Maga to help him conduct riot control – isn’t that “participating” in a civil disorder?

    Looks to me like a fatally flawed proposal that will end up getting heavily amended or tossed out if passed.

    If it passes if you assemble in any group and the sum total of the participants have in their possession the “necessary components” of the prohibited weapons it looks like the whole group could be charge by an overzealous prosecutor.

    It does however show an intent to make major protests inherently illegal even if they are in fact peaceful – as someone will interpret them as threatening or intimidating.

  93. E.M.Smith says:

    Don’t forget the classic bar weapon: The broken glass bottle. So stand arround with a glass drink bottle will fit the Stretch Goals too…

  94. Larry Ledwick says:

    The US achieves first full month as a net exporter of oil and natural gas.


  95. jim2 says:

    Larry Ledwick – shale producers are having a really tough time right now due to low crude prices in combination with mountains of debt. Many will go bankrupt. However, shale oil will continue to flow.

  96. YMMV says:

    The Return of the Greta. Coming soon to a COP near you.

    Day 18. We’re speeding towards Europe! Estimated time of arrival right now is Tuesday morning. We’ll be arriving at Doca de Alcantara, Lisbon. We are all looking forward to see you there!

    I can’t wait to see how she is going to top her last speech!

  97. philjourdan says:

    @Larry and EM – State (or Commonwealth) law does not extend to federal property.

    The rule of supremacy.

  98. Larry Ledwick says:

    EM you will like this little archery improvement by the slingshot master on the sling shot channel – JoergSprave

  99. E.M.Smith says:


    Yes but:

    Lots of military and police guys take martial arts off campus or sometimes teach as a sideline… so what hapoens when the reservist goes home off base with his instruction manual? ?..

  100. E.M.Smith says:

    FWIW I’m almost certain this is unconstitutional on three grounds.
    Freedom of speach
    Freedom of association
    Implicit in the right to keep and bear arms (not just guns BTW, the 2nd does not say fire arms only) is the right to know how to use them. Based in the common law right to self defense AND in what is a “well regulated Militia” meaning a militarily competent civilian population.

    Just it would take a decade and grief to get to the ruling…

  101. jim2 says:

    RE firing of Sec of Navy – we know left-tards have occupied upper echelons of many if not most public and private organizations of any significant size. The question is if this is also true for the military. What better way to neutralize the greatest fighting force in the world but hamstring soldiers with complex rules of engagement that have them hesitate to pull the trigger due to fear of imprisonment and put them more in harm’s way? Furthermore, the Dimowits whine bloody murder every time Trump tries to drain the swamp or verbally “attack” a TLA or someone in the military. How do we rid ourselves of these idiots?

  102. Larry Ledwick says:

    Yes President Obama had a major purge of senior military officers that did not suck up to his agenda. In the process he politicized the army like never before. It will take 15+ years to cull those folks out of leadership positions. Attrition is our friend, along with shifting them to peter position locations where they are relatively harmless, like the national taskforce for painting rocks on military bases.

  103. E.M.Smith says:


    One retirement or death at a time….

    Trump can accelerate the retirements and add more decent folks.

    The really hard part is the “nurseries” where socialist dominance of schools pollutes the majority of the population. This is a plank of The Communist Manifesto. Undoing it will take generations. Governors at least in some States can change their boards and school presidents, but….

    In the end, it will depend on the Republican Party seeing the light, then the people voting for that agenda. With luck, the added visibility on the Democrat frauds will help that. So a second term of Trump, then Ivanka for 8 more. 8-)

  104. philjourdan says:

    EM – point taken. Think Sanctuary cities.

    CW II has already started. Except this time, it is not the south that has started it.

  105. Larry Ledwick says:

    Maybe the perfect kick off article for your next emergency preparedness article.

    View this collection on Medium.com

    I have literally gone through that same calculation, although the origination of the math came from a slightly different source. The math associated with probability of kill for nuclear weapons is essentially identical.

    One of the questions folks in emergency preparedness get is why do we have so many nuclear weapons. Well once you work it out the math is obvious.

    The probability of a nuclear missile successfully delivering its warhead on target and destroying the target is the exact same sort of probabilistic math.

    Let’s say the bad guys have 100 missile silos. The consequences of taking a strike from one of those missile silos is very high so the only rational math is to attempt to get 99.99% probability of kill.
    Suppose 10% of his missiles are not ready to launch at any given time due to maintenance, and other structural down times.
    Suppose the missile crews have a 1% chance of not getting the word to launch.
    Suppose the missile has a 85% chance of launching on command, successfully completeing its burn and de-bussing its warheads successfully toward their target, and they have a 50% chance of landing within the lethal kill radius of their hardened missile silo target.

    so you have 90% availability
    99% reliability of communication of launch order
    85% chance of getting the missile out of the tube and the warhead on its final trajectory to to target 50% of the warhead landing within its CEP (circle of equal probability of kill) of say 30 meters from the silo

    .90 * .99 * .85 * .50 = .378675 probability of a single warhead doing the task intended by the planner.

    That means to have essentially a 99.99% probability of kill you need to launch at least 3 warheads for each high priority target (and we have not even discussed anti missile systems yet).

    Same sort of math applies to flood, hurricane, tornado, blizzard, wild fire, riot or zombie preparedness.

    If you draw enough hands of poker you will eventually pull a royal flush.

  106. E.M.Smith says:

    Something similar applies to gambling and investing. You ought to bet at most 5% of your stake on any one bet (investment) since large bets eventually wipe you out in a bad run..

  107. E.M.Smith says:

    Various news programs have been running a series of selected snips from different YSM presenters, or various Democrats, attacking Trump with escalated vitriol. It is just funny.

    IF you believed them, Trump is The Devil Incarnate, blended with Jack To Ripper and every evil leader from Caligula to Hitler. Just so incredibly Jumped The Shark! They look like insane idiots devoid of any touch with reality.

    What I can’t decide is just this: Are they that demented and insane with TDS; or are they just empty suits filled with empty heads reading the Scripted Party Line for buckets of cash not caring what their owners want or the insanity of what comes from their mouths?

  108. Larry Ledwick says:

    I used to know a guy that worked at a major TV station, he made it very clear that the majority of the “talent” were dumb as a post. There were a couple who had brains one was a helicopter pilot and the other was a weather guy (still on air years later).

  109. Larry Ledwick says:

    Gee apparently they are finally starting to notice what should be obvious to anyone who has tried to start a car in cold temperatures, Electric cars are just about useless in severe cold weather.

    We are going to have a real cold snap or two that leave a whole bunch of folks stranded with no charge and no way to carry a kilowatt to their stranded car to get it to a charging station.

    Translation the tow truck companies will make a fortune dragging dead battery E-cars to charging stations, during cold spells (when they can get around to it after getting the ICE cars started that won’t crank)

    It has been 40-50 years since we had winters like the late 1970’s early 1980’s, so that learning experience is lost to anyone younger than that. (ie almost the entire owner base of E-car drivers)


  110. Larry Ledwick says:

    Note this article on the Tesla X does not bother to mention the temperature, or how far they drove the car or how long they had to wait to recharge it while all the chargers were in use by other cars.
    My bet they drove about 40 miles or less, in cold snowy conditions that is enough to be impressed by traction control programming and enough to produce the glowing report Tesla was looking for.

    (what manufactures set up tests that make their products look good from publications that they know will be friendly evaluators? – no say it ain’t so! )

    They also skillfully failed to mention price – Starting at $86,190
    At that price, it damn well better have hot coffee waiting for you when you get in the car.


  111. Larry Ledwick says:

    Interesting item on the education contracting racket and how our students are being sold as a commodity, and insiders who know what is coming in legislation skim millions off the processes.


  112. E.M.Smith says:

    The energy needed to keep passengers at 70 F when outside temp is 10 Below Zero is not small. It is free in an ICE. EV is $ and range reduction. Good luck with that in Minnesota…

    IIRC, one Diesel VW was so efficient they had to add a fuel driven heater. That is with about 50% of burn as waste heat… (though most ends up in the exhaust not the water jacket).

    I’m also wondering how sturdy the batteries are to being frozen at -35 F in Idaho…

  113. E.M.Smith says:

    Ran into an article stating that charging lithium cells below freezing (zero C) causes dendrite growth, capacity loss, and cell failure (eventual Sparky Car / fire).


    This users forum has interesting stories. The Tesla, it seems, knows not to charge if frozen… there’s also some “climate” mode to warm the battery to let it charge… eventually… after consuming enough electric heater time & $. Finally, the connector has issues that limit amps when frozen, but they have a fix…

    Not looking very cold friendly to me.

  114. Larry Ledwick says:

    Two interesting reads on use of architectural design to create public spaces that are naturally safer from terrorist attack, and design considerations for defensive barriers for public spaces I found while following links on twitter. Some interesting ideas which could be applied to all sorts of situations.


    Click to access 430_ch4.pdf

  115. Larry Ledwick says:

    Trump Campaign announces it will not credential Bloomberg news representatives after they publicly announce they will engage in biased reporting.

    @parscale: “Since [Bloomberg has] declared their bias openly, the Trump campaign will no longer credential representatives of Bloomberg News for rallies or other campaign events.”

    @TeamTrump statement below ⬇️

  116. Larry Ledwick says:

    Hmmmm this might be an interesting tactic to counter candidates that openly refuse to perform their elected duties and honor Constitutional principles.


  117. p.g.sharrow says:

    “There is No Controlling Authority” is what Al Gore said when confronted about his ignoring a law about his use of Federal resources in his election campaign. Therefore he could not be prosecuted because there was no crime. I was once an city official and our Lawyers told us the as a matter of law we could not be held to account for ignoring most of these “controlling” laws.
    Many people in the Bureaucracy and Politicians are not people of Honor. The Constitution and most of the controlling laws have no controlling language about enforcement and punishment for their violation, so people without honor can safely ignore them. .pg.

  118. E.M.Smith says:


    I wonder who can bring suit for “Breach of oath of office?”

  119. Another Ian says:


    “I’ve seen this stunning level of predictive power and accuracy from ECMWF many times now, so believe the hype, it works. We’re living in a very fortunate time as weather tools like this will save uncountable lives and property during the coming decades.”


  120. Another Ian says:

    The latest “tipping point team”

    “Authors: Timothy M. Lenton, Johan Rockström, Owen Gaffney, Stefan Rahmstorf, Katherine Richardson, Will Steffen & Hans Joachim Schellnhuber



  121. Another Ian says:

    E.M. FYI

    “The ABC is ecstatic: “free market capitalism is facing a challenge” ”


  122. E.M.Smith says:

    I am not happy.

    We’re having a lingering cold storm, of the sort normally found in February, where it’s cold and windy with occasional howling noises, trees blowing about, rain in bands, loads of snow in the Sierra Nevada… And this time of year it’s supposed to be: occasional modestly cool at most, showers and winter coming in a few weeks.

    At this rate, January / February could be really a bother…


    I’m exploring setting up a Kodi / LibreElec media server as an alternative to the Roku that died. I know I did a test case on the Pi M3 some long while ago, but oddly, can’t find where I posted or commented about it. It was only slightly interesting at the time so maybe I didn’t post a formula…

    Installed KODI on the Odroid N2 and then it didn’t have any media nor does it have the default library stuff. (So “hover over foo” and pick doesn’t work) and, of course, since that’s supposedly always there, nothing says how to install what’s there by default…

    I may just hit up Wally World and buy another Roku…

    At this point I’m not thrilled with the robustness of Roku hardware. One remote died just from a car trip. Another one has “dodgy buttons” and so we mostly use the tablet / cell phone ap as remote. The Third has had the Stick die a surprise death. (Still not sure how to purge it from accounts… but not an issue… yet…) So the “dodgy Remote” is now paired to the other stick that had a dead remote ;-) Yeah, a house with 2 people and 3 Roku is now 2 people and “only” 2 Roku…

    Thus my exploration of a DIY option.

    Any “pointers” on a DIY media center that can do something remotely like the Roku are welcome. I’ve generall avoided “all things video” until very recently in terms of tech stuff / postings… so I’m a bit of a Noob at all of it.; which means folks with Clue infited to smite me with the Clue Stick…

    My Tablet is also old enough that it’s likely to die / depricate-to-death soon. Most of the applications I try to install from the Google Play Store say “not for you, bubbu, spend more money or be ridiculed”… well, really “does not work on your device”… Heck, I onlly bought it…….. about a decade ago ;-) So while I have Pluto TV, BBC, RT, and a few others on it, I can’t add much (like Kodi).

    Oh Well…

    I suppose I can survive without TV / Roku in the Office… “Only” Browser based video and broadcast TV.. And, I’d wanted to move to the direct wired ethernet for TV so that I could turn off WiFi when the spouse wanted to sleep. (We’ve pretty much proven 5G / 5 GHz causes insomnia for us, which means no TV after bed time or accept a Grumpy Spouse…) So either no TV, or make a “device”, or buy a Roku Ultra with ethernet cable. Or? Yeah, soliciting kibitzing…

  123. llanfar says:

    An Apple TV is pricey, but quite solid…

  124. E.M.Smith says:

    Oh Hell No! Creepy Uncle Joe…

  125. Larry Ledwick says:

    Minor details –


  126. philjourdan says:

    What I can’t decide is just this: Are they that demented and insane with TDS; or are they just empty suits filled with empty heads reading the Scripted Party Line for buckets of cash not caring what their owners want or the insanity of what comes from their mouths?

    Conditioned reflex. In years past, merely yelling “racist” got a desired response. A bumbling stuttering fool apologizing or explaining away the alleged infraction. But it did not work on Trump. No matter how many times they used it, he did not apologize, he fought back. So they have just ramped up the hatred hoping for the desired response. And it is not forthcoming. So yes, they are programmed automatons, but the kibble is not being released as they expect it, so they have to continue to ratchet up the actions and rhetoric, not realizing, that by doing so, they both lose credibility, and desensitize those who it is intended to convince. In essence,they are destroying their most effective weapon by its over use.

  127. Larry Ledwick says:

    Looks like the guys that were doing the Webuildthewall finally got a govt contract.
    Their system allows them to build the wall much faster than other systems – it will be interesting to see how this shakes out.

    Fog City Midge 🇺🇸
    1 hour ago

    Breaking News! Fisher industries, behind the construction of @WeBuildtheWall awarded $268M contract to #buildthewall in Yuma Sector! ❤️🇺🇸Congratulations!🔥 @realDonaldTrump

    This is the citizen funded wall they built with our donations on a grade the corps of engineers said could not be done.

  128. Larry Ledwick says:

  129. Larry Ledwick says:

    Just throw this out for folks to ponder.

  130. Larry Ledwick says:

    The Republican answer to the Democratic inquiry on impeachment of President Trump

    Report of Evidence in the Democrats’ Impeachment Inquiry in the House of Representatives.
    Dec 2 2019
    Devin Nunes Jim Jordan Michael T. McCaul

  131. Larry Ledwick says:

    Looks like a new source for News people might want to check out. Headsnipe is one of twitters top contributors, he has a passion for digging out government notices and announcements, press releases and related official public information.

    Nov 27

    I have created http://JustTheRealNews.com and now http://JTRN.US without any formal education or training in web development or business. What I lack in those areas, I try to make up in passion.

    Just the Real News is an open source US Government news aggregator that will show you what is being released daily, near real time without any added bias.

  132. H.R. says:

    E.M. wrote: “At this point I’m not thrilled with the robustness of Roku hardware. One remote died just from a car trip. Another one has “dodgy buttons” and so we mostly use the tablet / cell phone ap as remote. The Third has had the Stick die a surprise death. (Still not sure how to purge it from accounts… but not an issue… yet…) So the “dodgy Remote” is now paired to the other stick that had a dead remote ;-) Yeah, a house with 2 people and 3 Roku is now 2 people and “only” 2 Roku… “

    Dodgy Roku hardware is what the Mrs. has found to be the case as well. Matter of fact, 3 days before we left for Florida she had a [something Roku] delivered. I’m not much of a TV watcher, so all I know about Roku is that she is often cussing a blue streak over some crapped-out component or other of the two systems she keeps running in our household.

    She buys whatever component it is that fritzed out from online sources at reasonable prices, so the way I see it, we are w-a-a-a-y ahead in money spent on sketchy hardware versus paying a cable bill. Just guessing, but we could probably buy a new Roku setup every month for the same or less than the old monthly cable bill.

    Still, you’re right about the annoyance factor. Obviously, it’s not even daily or weekly, or monthly that something craps out, but it happens often enough that she is fussing around rearranging components and ordering replacements to the point that it is noticeable to me. That and the air turning blue ;o)

  133. H.R. says:

    We arrived in Florida on Sunday, December 1, about 3 hours later than what it should have been.

    Those weather systems sweeping the country from West to East, hitting NorCal and Larry pretty hard? We left Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, and the system rolled in behind us after we were gone. Great day of traveling. First stop was Tennessee, where the front edge was just catching up to us on Saturday morning, but we were packed up and in about an hour were ahead of the system on our way to our next stop in Georgia on Saturday night. Another good travel day.

    That weather system caught us again in Sunday morning at Georgia. It was only rain, and we got ahead of that in about 2 hours, but the wind… oh my! It was blowing the trailer over 1-2 feet here and there for a total swing of 2-4 feet and that was with me slowing down to 50 – 60 mph. So much for going 70 mph and passing semi-trucks and slower travel trailer rigs at will. I had to stay in the right lane and only pass slower traffic when two lanes were clear to swing way wide around the slowpokes.

    But…! About 40(?) miles into Florida, the wind didn’t matter much anymore. Traffic was backed up 3 lanes solid, stop and go and slow and go for about 100 miles to where there’s a split for Orlando/Tampa. I was averaging about 30 miles per hour between the breakouts and dead stops.

    There are 3 college towns on that stretch of I-75 and the Thanksgiving traffic wasn’t helping; tons of kids returning to school for finals from Thanksgiving visits home. There was a breakout after each of those exits as a lot of cars were shed each time.

    Finally, at the Orlando/Tampa split, I found out that more people are headed to Orlando and Disney than Tampa and a Buccaneers game :o) We lost 2/3rds of the traffic, but the wind was still bad, so 60 mph +/- the last bit of the way in. No more slow and go, though, and plenty of thin traffic spots to pass if I needed to.

    OH! And Tampa. The I-4/I-275/I-75 junction area in Tampa is always a notorious mess. I was dreading getting through there with the trailer in tow, but it was the thinnest traffic I have ever seen there in Tampa EVAH! There were 4-5 car lengths between cars and some lanes empty for a hundred or so yards. Ossqss will know what I’m talking about… or maybe not. Probably hasn’t seen anything like that before ;o)

    I’ve never had reason to travel on the Thanksgiving weekend before. I have always read about the “heaviest travel days of the year” but it’s just clips on TV or (in the old days) below the fold articles in the paper. It was really something to experience it first hand, and towing a trailer to boot.

    The Mrs. and I are agreed that we’re never traveling on the Thanksgiving weekend again. We will *ahem* adjust our travel plans accordingly.

    Oh… and the cold finally caught up to Florida and us. It was 48 (F) last night, which is still short sleeves and shorts weather for me (but I did wear a nylon windbreaker) :o)

  134. David Young says:

    Interesting to hear of the issues others have had with their Roku’s, guess I’ve been lucky. Bought a Roku 3 in early ’14 and a Premiere Plus in early ’17 and both are still going strong with no issues. Both have been used nearly every day since purchased. I bought the ethernet port models as I use wired ethernet (Powerline) exclusively in my home.

    I also purchased a Roku Ultra a little over year ago as a gift for some friends. They use it regularly and have had no problems with it.

  135. Larry Ledwick says:

    Snow cover in 25 states item on wattsupwiththat early winter weather, is reminding folks of the late 1970’s.


  136. E.M.Smith says:

    I bought the very cheap Stick at about $25, and it has been used much of the day, every day, for a year or 2? so not exactly an expensive issue. The other Stick, almost as old, still going strong. The one that’s a dongle with optical remote is maybe a year old and still doing fine. It was maybe $35? So figure about $10/year even if they all die as fast as the first one… The remote that died from the car ride ended up whacking into the door in an “adventurous” maneuver so probably my bad… The dodgy remote was clicked hundreds of times a day for a year or two, so maybe to be expected it would wear the contacts….

    I’m willing to just buy a replacement, but will probably upgrade to the wired Ultra.

    Just exploring the DIY options first….

    Per Apple TV: Don’t know the cost of service for it, but assume it has a similar bunch of free channels along with some paid. I will check it out. Firestick can be hacked to make it an open computer, and that might be fun to try :-) but I don’t trust any closed device from Amazon or Google…

    Of course, I could just accept that I rarely watch TV in the office and even then It’s 90% Youtube or open News sites, so don’t really need a replacement.

  137. Larry Ledwick says:

    Cliff’s notes version of the Coup attempt against candidate and President Trump.

  138. Larry Ledwick says:

    Well apparently we can tally yet another high profile suicide associated with Jeffery Epstein.


    It appears to be down right dangerous to be associated with some of the shady characters in the power elite lately.

  139. Another Ian says:


    Around that theme

  140. Another Ian says:


    Also IIRC – wasn’t that bloke was being sold as having Trump connections?

  141. Larry Ledwick says:

    It is getting so you need a program to keep the players straight any more, I can’t keep track of who is connected to who and has a sister who is married to the campaign manager of the brother of the former fund raiser of the intern who – – –

  142. Larry Ledwick says:

    Rep. Devin Nunes files lawsuit asking for $435 million in damages from CNN for defamation.


  143. Larry Ledwick says:

    18,000 year old puppy pulled from Siberian permafrost – genetic tests are not able to determine for sure if it is a dog or a wolf pup.

  144. Another Ian says:

    Things here this morning

    “Kamala’s out, Hillary’s warming up”


    “Beyond belief. Dem Adam Schiff obtained Republican Devin Nunes and ors phone records as part of impeachment enquiry”


    Maybe I should have reversed the order

  145. Larry Ledwick says:

    The plot thickens!
    Looks like Schiff might have opened the door for some legal action.

  146. Another Ian says:

    “I, For One, Welcome Our New Self Driving Overlords”


    How to lose your hi-tech car

  147. YMMV says:

    The Brexit backstory, from the way way back in King James times. Probably the only association in your mind with King James is the King James bible, one of the few times a committee produced anything that pleased anybody. You have probably heard of Jamestown, chartered in 1606, but touch and go until the introduction of tobacco as a cash crop about 1613. And you have also heard of Pocahontas and Jamestown. And the first documented Africans arrived in Jamestown in 1619. Oh, and King James was the one who imported Scottish settlers into northern Ireland, the region most resistant to English control. “The colonists were required to be English-speaking, Protestant, and loyal to the king.” ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plantation_of_Ulster )

    The big story in this book is the Gunpowder Plot of November 1605, the plan to blow up parliament when King James and everybody who was anybody were present. One ton of gunpowder in the room below. The plotters were a small group of Jesuits, but as they needed more manpower, they enlisted someone who had a friend in parliament, with the result there was a leak and the plot fizzled.

    The punishment for traitors was a bit more serious then. Hang them, but not quite until dead, eviscerate them and castrate them why they were conscious, then behead them and stick the head on a pole. More than a dozen met this fate. Guy Fawkes gets all the modern credit, but he was just one of the guys. Actually, his name was Guido, but they called him Guy.

    This book is the best I know of regarding the Gunpowder Plot. It’s about Shakespeare in 1606 and it turns out that Shakespeare was rather close to the action, on both sides, and that events at that time seriously influenced his plays. So despite the title, you can read this book as history. And it reads well. “Shakespeare in 1606” by James Shapiro.

    King James was the one who wanted to unite Scotland and England. He was king of both, but he could not persuade parliament to unite England and Scotland. That did not happen for another hundred years. Ireland had already been assimilated. Parliament (or congress) as a hindrance.

    From an account at the time, “Commons were good enough at delaying business when they did not try, but when they did, they were formidable.”

    The goals of unification: “eliminating hostile laws between two nations, abolishing the separate legal status of the Borders, negotiating a commercial union, and resolving questions of naturalization.” Again, so modern, but we lack a Shakespeare to write about it.

    The trial of the plotters. “It wasn’t a trial in the modern sense: the accused weren’t permitted to defend themselves and had no counsel.” Hmmm, sounds modern to me.

    Someone at that time wrote a book, “A Treatise of Equivocation”, basically a manual for Jesuits about how to lie. There were four ways listed. One, choose ambiguous words. Like the meaning of ‘is’?. Two, omit crucial pieces of information (“the whole truth”). Three, hidden gestures. (Say “He came not this way” while secretly pointing the other direction). Four, “mental reservation”. Say the lie while thinking to yourself the truth and God will know your thoughts, so it is not a sin. In the words of a court, “The commonwealth cannot possibly stand if this wicked doctrine be not beaten down and suppressed, for if it once take root in the hearts of people, in a short time there will be no faith, no troth, no trust … and all civil societies will break and be dissolved.” And one prosecutor noted that it “could tear apart the social fabric no less than barrels of gunpowder could destroy bodies and buildings.” Hmmm, sounds post-modern to me.

    The role of the fear of Catholics was big then, with echoes into modern times. The fear that “Catholics would follow directives from Rome and rise in revolt when instructed to do so.” More moderate voices thought there were two kinds of Catholics, “a loyal majority still committed devotionally to the old faith, and a potentially treasonous minority who placed their obedience to the pope above their allegiance to the king.” That sounds modern too, except that other groups have taken the place of the pope. For the English at that time, the big problem looming in the future was the Puritans (Cromwell, English Civil War).

  148. Larry Ledwick says:

    The role of the fear of Catholics was big then, with echoes into modern times. The fear that “Catholics would follow directives from Rome and rise in revolt when instructed to do so.”

    There was good reason for the English to be wary of the Catholics at that time 1606 was only 34 years after the St. Bartholomew’s Day massacre in 1572 in which thousands of Protestants were slaughtered in France by the Catholics (it is said the Pope was quite pleased with that action against those uppity Protestants.)

    In those days they took religious differences seriously (sort of like certain cultural factions now immigrating into Europe).

  149. Another Ian says:

    “Rattling the Cage Doors”


    “You see, any curtailment of free speech doesn’t actually silence people. It leads people to communicate in other ways. Which can mean the “rulers” having no clue of what is actually going on in people’s minds because they’re not in on the joke — few of them would understand they’re the joke — and don’t see the communication taking place.”

    Via SDA

  150. Larry Ledwick says:

    Schiff may have really stepped in it with the release of the phone records if this analysis is correct.

  151. E.M.Smith says:

    @Another Ian:

    That’s a very good article.

  152. E.M.Smith says:

    BTW, been having a minor adventure in appliance failure land.

    After “only” about 60 years, the GE Electric cooktop that was OEM with the house in Avocado Green (so you know it was from an early era) failed yesterday. The way it failed was also surprising. One burner would not turn off. There’s 6 buttons, one being off. Both the warm and low buttons pop up if you push the other buttons, but it doesn’t turn off, it goes to about medium or warm (not sure which). Touch the warm or low button, it just falls down with no force.

    In trying to turn it off, I worked the buttons rapidly, and that popped the breaker. So now no stove at sll.

    OK, saved me going out in the rain to flip the breakers (panel outside…)

    Well, being a prepper sort, I put the electric skillet on the counter, unpacked the 1 kW portable electric burner from my road / hotel kit, and set up the Asian butane one burner stove on the dining table. No worries, dinner as usual :-)

    Oh, and the oven is a separate unit and working.

    Being a stove packrat, I have a half dozen or more various stoves I could set up, but they are more camping style. This set is more spouse friendly. Just turn knob and go for all three. This also ignores the gas BBQ and other outdoor appliances due to weather.

    So sometime in the next week or 2, I need to dissassemble the switch box on the house stove and assess repair or replace or maybe just ignore…

    It is a bit amusing to have a key major appliance fail and not really care. That’s the meaning of being prepared. Things just keep on keeping on…

  153. H.R. says:

    @YMMVwho says:
    4 December 2019 at 2:06 am

    Read it all again, peeps.

    That is one fine comment and one of your best of the year, if not of all times (and I know we frequent many of the same blogs, so I catch a lot of your comments).

    Kudos, bravo, amen, right on, preach it, and anything else supportive and admiring that might come to mind.

    That was a home run in the bottom of the ninth in the 6th-game-to-force-a-7th game of a World Series.

    I’ve read it twice and will read it again.

  154. Another Ian says:


    Try Bill Bryson “Shakespeare”

    “Only one man had the circumstances and the gifts to give us such incomparable works, and William Shakespeare of Stratford was unquestionably that man – whoever he was”

  155. Power Grab says:

    @ Larry Ledwick re:

    “It is getting so you need a program to keep the players straight any more, I can’t keep track of who is connected to who and has a sister who is married to the campaign manager of the brother of the former fund raiser of the intern who – – –”

    I know I have seen an image that was a sort of mosaic of the ties through blood or marriage between media big shots and Obama administration members. I think I saw it on Twitter, but haven’t found it again yet. In the meantime, here is a page that describes some of the connections:


  156. Power Grab says:

    @ EM re: “appliance failure land”

    That reminds me of the way my dad treated TVs when they died.

    The big floor model console TV (from the early 1960s) that I grew up with eventually failed. When Dad got a replacement, it was a tabletop model. I reckon this was in the 1970s. He set it on top of the floor model TV, which made it transform into a table of sorts.

    I seem to remember he eventually ended up with a still smaller TV and set it on top of the last one when it failed. I really don’t know what decade that was…maybe 1980s?

    I don’t know if he kept the dead TVs because he thought someone might eventually come along who could fix them, or if he was just disinclined to move furniture after retirement. Or maybe the city had insanely high charges for hauling off old appliances and furniture.

    I still have my first computer in storage somewhere. I’m on my 5th or 6th desktop computer. I don’t stack them, though.

    And I’m on my 4th laptop computer. I only stack them when they’re in storage. I use them at least once a year. They serve special purposes that would be unavailable to me if I upgraded them.

    Oh, I do have a couple of printers that are stacked on my coffee table. There are 2 other printers in the back bedroom, too.

    /cue laugh track/

  157. Another Ian says:


    You did better there than we did with the ranch Lincoln “Tombstone” welder. Bought about 1975 and finally let the smoke out a couple of years ago. Welded many things in its lifetime though.

  158. H.R. says:

    @E.M. re old stoves – In the 70s, we had an old stove go POOF! with bad electrical smells and all that.

    I bought a few coils of high-temp electrical wire in various colors and replaced any crispy wires with the same wire size/color. The root cause culprit was the electromechanical timer mechanism, for which I was able to buy a replacement from the local pro appliance component replacement shop. That cost me $30-$40 bucks and a long Saturday, as I recall.

    Point being that what was a DIY project back when, when things weren’t all integrated circuit chip based plastic cost-reduction-ware, is now going to be next to impossible for you, when it is probably a matter of a new push-button board, and maybe, maybe a couple of feet of hi-temp wire.

    Where are ya gonna get the push-button component now?

    However, it’s lasted this long and they aren’t made like that any more. You’re probably going to have to replace your old friend, so good luck, Chiefio.

    OTOH, you’re looking to sell, so it’s probably a good thing to go to the local Big Box and get a new stove/oven with the latest bells and whistles to wOwZA prospective buyers.

    Note: Avocado green appliances are not a selling point nowadays ;o)

  159. Another Ian says:



    600 thumbs up, 36,000 thumbs down


  160. Larry Ledwick says:

    I have never purchased a new major appliance in my life, the few times I needed a washer etc. I found a used appliance shop and picked up a refurbished one for a fraction of the cost of the new appliances.

    There are still folks fixing older appliances, they typically operate in the older and poorer neighborhoods were the new fancy glass top ranges etc. are simply outside the budgets of the folks that live there. Our apartment complex even has a guy that picks up bad appliances and goes through them. Apartment complexes that have furnished apartments or apartments with appliances provided likely do that everywhere outside the affluent upscale neighborhoods.

    They might have parts to fix that stove on the shelf if it is a major brand.

    For example:


  161. Larry Ledwick says:

    Keeping in mind this is from CNN it is an interesting look at the friction between President Trump and the Intel Community. (assuming this is not spin and misdirection of course)


    Isn’t it sad that the first reaction of people is to presume there is a hidden agenda in this piece and that this article is trying to misdirect or nudge public opinion rather than being a relatively objective report on the situation?

  162. E.M.Smith says:

    @Larry L:

    I find it interesting that what Trump does is just what ever boss I’ve had does. Ask to have justification. Challenge the conclusions. “Show your homework”.

    I came away from that story thinking the TLAs were used to manipulating the POTUS with structured information to limit the outcomes and Trump is:
    a) His own man.
    b) Interested in challenging and changing things.
    c) NOT happy when he catches you trying to maneuver him.
    d) Very aware that the TLAs are out to get him.
    e) On the word of No One.

    I think the intelligence agencies would not like me as POTUS either. I’d have a required justification for any recommended action and a challenge to any information that didn’t comport with my observations of the world. Or sometimes just to make sure they are awake and doing their homework…

  163. jim2 says:

    2I/Borisov: The First Interstellar Comet

    Updated: 2019 September 25

    The IAU has announced that observations are now conclusive that C/2019 Q4 (Borisov) originated from outside of our solar system. As a result, it has now been officially designated 2I/Borisov (the second interstellar object observed).


  164. jim2 says:

    Jealousy is a powerful force ;)

    Trudeau, Johnson, Macron appear to be mocking Trump in surfaced video from NATO summit


  165. Larry Ledwick says:

    The other obvious take from that article about how Trump responds to Intel briefings is that in their world, they never considered economic strategies and pressure as “weapons” to be used to influence other governments. They have always been viewed as “slap your hands” like punishments, but President Trump understands that long term serious economic strategies can literally take down governments.

    In the past, they were always minor sanctions that took away a few bank accounts etc. but he is using them in a different way, like the application of serious tariffs on China, he lets the economic interests of other countries reinforce the effect, and over time costs them huge sums of money far more than the piddly amounts in frozen bank accounts. He also leaves normal trade in place which side steps the black market efforts to out maneuver sanctions.

    Cutting off trade just means others will take over that market share, he keeps the market share but changes the cost benefit ratio of the exchange so that over time it wears them down.

  166. Power Grab says:

    I have read an account of people who bought a brand new dishwasher, but since it wanted to be connected to the Internet before it would work, they were left in a quandry about what to do. They didn’t want their appliances to be online.

    I wonder if brand new ovens are set up to require WIFI before they will work?

  167. Another Ian says:

    “Takes layers of incompetence to create mindless catastrophic hyperbole”


    “When the media says “billions will die” Shellenberger wanted to know why. He just pulled on that string and it all unravelled…”

  168. Another Ian says:

    “Turley Warns Congress on Impeachment for ‘Obstruction’: ‘It’s YOUR Abuse of Power’”


  169. Larry Ledwick says:

    Oh I hope this is true!

  170. E.M.Smith says:


    I’ve not seen IoT ovens, but I’ll never buy one anyway.

    Just ask it the appliance is “smart” or internet connected and say No Thanks.

    Last time I looked, about 5 years back, there were lots of plain old stoves and ovens.

  171. Another Ian says:

    E.M. – Beware!

    “Leave California, Keep Paying California Taxes…Really”


    Via SDA

  172. Larry Ledwick says:

    The Bongio Report has gone live as a conservative news aggregator alternate to The Drudge Report.


    This is in addition to Gab Trends which is also providing an optional location to find news links.


  173. Larry Ledwick says:

    Another alternative site popping up.
    Looks like an effort to sidestep the manipulation of things like videos by youtube etc.

    Will have to keep an eye on this one to see who goes there to out flank the big digital censors.


  174. H.R. says:

    Power Grab: “[…] They didn’t want their appliances to be online. […]”

    I replaced our water heater before we left for Florida with a “Smart” water heater. Home Depot prices: $609 for a 50-gallon heater with a 9 year warranty or $679 for essentially the same water heater, but a ‘Smart’ one that was WiFi connected to who knows what. It had leak detection and a 12-year warranty.

    Installation was $800. YIKES!!! Water heaters are easy-peasy to install. What’s up with the $800?!? Since I have a truck to haul one home, I bought a heater and hauled it home to install myself.

    I went ahead and bought the ‘Smart’ heater with leak detection figuring I could disable the ‘Smart’ portion and Yes.You.Can. The leak detection still works even if you never set up the WiFi/smart phone features.

    Anyhow, your comment triggered my desire to tell of my first-so-far ‘Smart’ appliance avoidance, even though I bought one. I’m not 100% sure you can buy the various types of ‘Smart’, WiFi-enabled appliances and get all the features without having to connect to the outside world, but in this case, it worked out OK.

    We’ll see.

  175. Power Grab says:

    @ HR:

    Thanks for the water heater story! I am encouraged at your success in keeping out of the IoT swamp. :-D

  176. H.R. says:

    @Power Grab – as I said, it worked out OK… this time, but I am left wondering what other ‘Smart’ gadgets are out there that lose most or all of their functionality unless you do connect them to cyberspace.

    I’m vaguely recalling some basic household items that won’t work unless you control them from a smart phone, but since I avoid any such gadgets, and/because I don’t have a smart phone, I can’t recall what they were.

  177. H.R. says:

    A shout out to our one and only Rhoda Klapp – Hey! Are you going to be doing any Wintering in the Naples, Florida area again this year?

    If so, let’s do another lunch, closer to you this time since you had a bit of a drive up to Lakeland back in January.

    Say the word and E.M. will provide back-channel email contact so we can do lunch. Or if you prefer, you can wait for the a meeting announcement.

    Ossqss missed out on a lot of your wisdom and background, since he had to split early for a business meeting. I’m pretty sure he’d like to join in if there’s an opportunity.

    The Second Annual Chiefio’s Blog Christmas Gala and Dodgy Proceedings is in the planning stages. Speak up if you’d like to be a featured presenter on a topic of interest to the usual multitude of attendees. There will be a special badge, probably involving spinach leaves, to identify your status as one of the prestigious presenters or panelists ;o)

    If you’re going to pull a ‘Greta’ and travel to Florida via sailing yacht, let us know and we will delay the Christmas Gala until January or February, depending on headwinds, so you don’t miss a lick.

  178. YMMV says:

    Greta is angry. Old people have stolen her future. Millennials are against capitalism and for Marxism. I can’t explain Greta, but maybe millennials are against capitalism because they are poor. Why they are poor is another question, and Marxism isn’t going to help them, but this graph is very interesting.

    For discussion and explanation of this graph see Motls blog:

    From the comments, “in 2016, there were 71 million Millennials and 74 million baby boomers.”
    But their wealth is vastly different.

  179. p.g.sharrow says:

    Only a small portion of the Millennial s have been brainwashed into being useful fools but they are loud, useful and directed by their masters. The only people that are “stealing” their future are their Masters, not their grand parents…pg

  180. Another Ian says:

    “Climate and the Money Trail”


    Via Jo Nova

  181. Larry Ledwick says:

    File this under rumor at this point – nothing in the search engines and only showing up on one source but if this checks out will be yet another twist to the impeachment dog and pony show.


    This whole thing might end up like a gang war where the only way to figure out who won is who is left standing at the end.

    The obvious question is did she have any connections with HRC or the Bidens?

  182. jim2 says:

    LL – looks like the pic of MH is someone else. Looks like the rumor is false.


  183. rhoda klapp says:

    HR, thanks for the invite. I don’t know whether or when I’ll be in Naples. The sister-in-law’s house is rented out for most of the winter, and that’s where we usually stay. It is certain we’ll get out there sometime but it may be in the spring. The only solution I can think of is to hold it in Oxfordshire.

  184. H.R. says:

    @Rhoda – I’d love to meet up in Oxfordshire, but first I’ll have to figure out how to tow the trailer there.

  185. p.g.sharrow says:

    ” Dec. 03– Dec. 3–Sure, you want fries with that, but you might not get them.

    Potato processors are scrambling to prevent a French fry shortage as bad weather decimated crops among North America’s largest producers.

    Crops were first hit with frost in October, according to Bloomberg News, and then snow and rain in Manitoba, North Dakota and Minnesota rendered the crops unharvestable.

    Meanwhile, Bloomberg reported, fries are becoming all the rage in Canada, poutine pressure — err, putting pressure — on potato stocks. The two factors combined may well boost prices across all of North America and hike costs abroad given that the U.S. will not be exporting its usual number of spuds, and may even be buying from abroad.

    “French fry demand has just been outstanding lately, and so supplies can’t meet the demand,” Idaho Potato Commission spokesman Travis Blacker told Bloomberg.

    The damage was twofold, according to “Today.” First, the yields were low, and second, the spuds were smaller. Fry manufacturers prefer longer potatoes for savory shoestrings.

    This may mean smaller, but more expensive, portions.

    The U.S. government is predicting that the number of potatoes available in the U.S. will drop 6% this year, the lowest level since 2010, reported WCAU-TV.

    Idaho alone, whose name is virtually synonymous with potatoes, is predicting potato production to fall by 5.5%, ABC News reported. Idaho, Oregon, North Dakota, Colorado and Maine, five of the nine potato-producing states, saw crop yields fall, ABC News said.

    “In Idaho, growers reported losses due to freezing temperatures in late September and early October,” the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in a report last month cited by Business Insider. “Several farmers left potatoes in the ground to avoid the cost of digging them up.”

    And in Manitoba, Canada, a top producer in that country, nearly 18% of potato crops in the province were simply left in the fields, Bloomberg learned.”
    (c)2019 New York Daily News

  186. cdquarles says:

    Re Boomer vs. Millennial ‘wealth’, keep in mind that Boomers are ‘old’ and Millennials are not. Dr. Thomas Sowell has an old book that goes through the why that is.

  187. Larry Ledwick says:

    LL – looks like the pic of MH is someone else. Looks like the rumor is false.

    Cool thanks for finding that – that phrase “whitehouseinsider” is so pervasive I was getting buried in useless search returns. As noted by one of the commenters:
    That site/story seemed legit at a glance because the website name they’ve used is thewhitehouseinsider, however the real whitehouse insider website is http://whcinsider.com/

    I tried to find out more about the website but just ended up going in circles to unrelated items that had key search terms in them. Looks like they were trying to spoof off of the common use of that phrase for that very reason.

    Interesting is that the other website mentioned actually has a different but similar sounding name.
    WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENTS INSIDER which may be worth watching from time to time.

    Exploring “behind the scenes” of the most powerful reporters and editors in the world, the Washington press corps. We track the White House Correspondents’ weekend and all the activities around it from journalists and media companies to the White House and politicos. Tammy Haddad is Co-Founder and Editor-In-Chief of WHC Insider and she hosts the Washington Insider podcast.

    White House Correspondents Insider is not affiliated with or approved by the White House Correspondents Association which is a registered trademark of the WHCA.

  188. YMMV says:

    cdquarles: “Dr. Thomas Sowell has an old book that goes through the why that is.”

    Thanks for that tip! He has more than a dozen books. Which one would you recommend to read first?

    This interview looks to be very good: “Thomas Sowell on the Myths of Economic Inequality”

    He started out Marxist, and got seriously educated and remained a Marxist. Then he got a job and figured it all out. Better late than never. Smart guy!

  189. Another Ian says:
  190. E.M.Smith says:

    @Another Ian:

    Yeah, California has been like that for decades. At one time tried to tax retirement accounts of folks who left the State on the theory that they earned the money when here. Courts tossed that one. The only reason I’m going to sell my home and not just rent it out is that having a rental in California would mean I had to pay California income tax on it.

    @Larry L:

    Thanks for the links on alternatives to Drudge. It’s amazing to me that The Left seems to think they can stop conservative speech. At best they can delay it while it moves…

    Per guns & ammo: Their numbers are low ;-)

    I know of at least 2 guns for which no records at all exist anywhere, and I have made a few hundred rounds of ammo that nobody ever counted (plus have materials for more). And I’m a light weight at this stuff.

    “There has been some speculation that Honcharenko was the whistle blower who launched the congressional investigation into President Trump”

    There’s your hook. Now the C.I.A. can say it wasn’t Eric Chiarley Mellow… From the “how to rescue your outed agent and cover your uncovered covert op” chapter…


    I’ll be headed back to Florida in a couple of months. Not sure exactly when. Spouse is off to Chicago in about a month, and it might end up being February… Somebody has to “dog sit”… and with everywhere frozen I’m just not that keen on a road trip in mid winter. Even across the South. Last time I was in snow in Arizona in the desert, and this year is colder…


    The Millennials will suddenly become less interested in socialism once they inherit the Boomers wealth…


    Guess it’s time I tried that “growing potatoes in buckets and bags” experiment ;-)

    I do plan on growing some of my own spuds this year. Maybe I’ll start early with some artificial light indoors ;-)

    For now, I’m still on the low carbs diet and dropping weight, so not an issue… yet. Another 5 pounds and it will start to be one ;-)

    @Another Ian:

    Medicine is so seriously wrong on so much, it’s an embarrassment. Doing the “Dig Here!” on heart disease after my Florida Friend had his bypass, I rapidly found hard proof that it’s low grade vitamin C deficiency. We need about 1 to 2 GRAMS a day. (Based on Gorilla consumption, that if you stop it, they develop the same heart diseases we get… but otherwise don’t).

    That whole industry of Heart Disease could be shut down with a change of diet advice.

    Oh, and per the “impeachment”, I’ve not bothered to watch the theatre. It’s just a bad joke being poorly implemented. We all KNOW the Dims are going to file articles of impeachment for “Being elected instead of Hillary” and that then the Senate is going to toss it out. It will accomplish nothing. It is building a BIG constituency for Trump though. Look at the “undeclared middle” and it is mostly moving to Trump.

    Schiff is a toady and annoying little weasel. Nadler is a toad and Troll like mildly revolting specter. Pelosi looks like a model for “Caskets R Us”. Their “witnesses” are seriously compromised and their “testimony” amounts to “we don’t like Trump”. Well, Duh. So tell me again why I’d want to steep myself in that shit show?

    So I’m just waiting for them to burn through a few more $Millions of tax payer dollars while doing nothing at all of value… THEN I get to vote…

  191. cdquarles says:

    I want to say that I’ve read all of his books and owned most of them. Start with Basic Economics, if you are interested in that. If you are more into history/politics, go for Vision of the Anointed and the various ones involving race or culture.

  192. cdquarles says:

    For those who’s metabolism would take 1 to 2 grams of ascorbic acid and turn it into oxalic acid, these people would be at risk of kidney stones, especially if the rest of their diet was relatively rich in oxalic acid itself or things that can be metabolized into it (rhubarb comes to mind). Blindly taking a mg/kg dose from animal A and trying it in animal B, without a dose response study, is risky. Does that mean that there are people who would benefit? Sure, yet there will be folk harmed, too.

    A thing with medicine, to me today, is that faddishness is overcoming common sense and that medicine is inherently a tailored service. Trying to make it cookie-cutter/one size fits all, is not an unalloyed good.

  193. Larry Ledwick says:

    Looks like not what it was presented to be.

    UPDATE 2: Haley Nelson of WSYX-TV reports that a resident was working on a “quantum physics generator” at the home and was burned. The type of burns caused confusion among first responders, prompting a precautionary evacuation of about 40 homes.

    Teams have not picked up any radiation at this time, but are continuing their investigation.

  194. E.M.Smith says:


    I didn’t just make up that Vit. C number. It comes from the M.D. doing the research study.

    @Larry L:

    I suspect it was one of these. FWIW, I’ve thought about making my own nuclear reactor too. Just a little one.


    Basically an overgrown TV Picture Tube that makes a few neutrons.


    IF you arranged it right, it might be possible to capture those neutrons in something like U or Th and get some energy out… IF you didn’t cook yourself in the process..

    Interesting side note:

    In research reactors, you can plumb the thermal neutrons to where you want them with plastic pipe… they just flow down the void space…

    FWIW, anyone can make a very small nuclear reactor out of “common household materials”. Think smoke detector. It will have nearly no power and not do much of anything at all, but it is possible. Remember the “Nuclear Boy Scout”?

    And, of course, folks will go Bat Shit Crazy if anyone hears about it, thinking it’s 1/2 way to a Nuke “boom” when it is closer to a warm smoke detector… Like telling someone you have a few pounds of radioactive potassium at home, when what you have is 2 lbs of KCl “no salt” salt… Yeah, it’s got K-40 in it, and it IS slightly radioactive, but… it’s just salt of a special kind sold in grocery stores everywhere.

    I’ve sometime wondered what would happen if you just accidentally left a cheap Geiger counter next to the No Salt display in a busy grocery store ;-)

    Somewhere I have a small bottle of heavy water. About 1/2 ounce. Friend gave it to me once… Never opened it, but I could legitimately say I have heavy water at home. Now add that to a claim to be building a nuclear device and watch the paranoia erupt ;-) I’d guess a couple of SWAT teams and 2 Hazmat trucks along with 3 Federal Agencies all inside an hour ;-) Then show them your old vacuum tube guts and a thimble size bottle of water… Somehow I doubt they would be amused with the caller…

  195. jim2 says:

    Holiday drinks around the world …

    For other skeptics in other cities (even in other countries) — why not organise something? I’ll mention it here… let’s get skeptics together.


  196. philjourdan says:

    Revisiting an older topic – LED Lights. But in this case, those used for cars headlights.

    I have noticed they cause issues with me. I think it is partially old age, but also the brightness is much higher than normal lights, even halogen. Has anyone else experienced issues with oncoming cars with the new LED headlamps?

  197. E.M.Smith says:

    @Phil Jourdan:

    The blue bright LED headlights essentially blind me and leave me with a headache after a few hours. The too bright red LED tail lights are a little better, but still cause discomfort.

    My solution is that I now have sunglasses in each car for night driving…

    For most of the cars, it is the egg yolk yellow lenses for just that purpose, but one of them has some greenish lens regular sunglasses as that was what I first tried. More as “sure one is in the car” in case I forget to move the yellow ones with me.

    Basically like these (though I don’t think mine are polarized… )

    I can actually see BETTER with these on than without them, especially in rain, drizzle or fog.

    Oh, and remember to assure your car has halogen or regular headlights (slightly yellow light) so you can still see what YOUR lights are illuminating very very well.

  198. E.M.Smith says:


    Friday works for me! (But won’t that be starting later tonight in Australia?… Maybe we need a UTC starting time ;-)

  199. Pingback: Drinking Around The World – Starting Now | Musings from the Chiefio

  200. philjourdan says:

    Thanks EM, I will try the yellow. I have actually tried sunglasses (regular ones), but they made it way too dark.

    I have noticed I have more headaches now, so I suspect it is the that reason (dark when I drive home now).

  201. Larry Ledwick says:

    I also detest the super bright bluish head lights and way too bright red LED tail lights.
    Following EM’s comments about night driving glasses I have been using them myself.

    This pair has relatively orange lenses which really cut the blue tint but makes them just a tad too dark for really dark conditions (no moon overcast no street lighting).

    In areas where there is poor lighting these work a little better but do not cut the blue quite as well.
    (normal night time, starry sky, or partial moon occasional street lighting)


    These are an over glasses design if you need prescription lenses

    I also use them when I have to get on the computer at 2:00 in the morning for work without killing my melatonin levels so I can go back to sleep.

  202. Another Ian says:

    “What do we call it when the State turns off your air conditioner? A “Peaksmart” moment”


  203. Steve C says:

    There are some troubling images here for M. Macron:
    Yellow Vests + Black Bloc –> SHTF, and not only in Paris.

  204. jim2 says:

    Dan Bongino did a soft launch of his new conservative news aggregator Wednesday morning, before starting to promote it in earnest on Twitter and his podcast later in the day, because he wanted to be sure the server could handle the traffic. A short while later, Bongino and his team had to upgrade the server because the traffic to the site was even higher than they’d expected.

    “The launch was incredible. I don’t know any other way to say it,” the frequent Fox News contributor told TheWrap by phone Thursday night, adding he hadn’t expected the “voluminous” traffic in spite of the heavy flow of visitors to his other site, bongino.com. “By noon it just exploded and by the evening it was nuclear. Traffic never really slowed down.”


  205. jim2 says:

    Ditto on bright auto lights – front and rear. I’ve been using yellow “sun” glasses for many years. It only gets worse with age.

  206. jim2 says:

    RE: Quantum Physics Reactor:

    Authorities say homes were evacuated out of ‘an abundance of caution’ and they do not believe the man ‘was trying to make anything that would do anyone any harm’.

    He will undergo a mental-health examination and may face charges of inducing a panic after authorities found there was no hazard.


  207. cdquarles says:

    I know that you didn’t, out most gracious host. I am taking issue with said studies. There is a reason why the animal A safety studies are not blindly carried over to animal B. They redo the dose response studies in animal B. First with small numbers then with large ones.

  208. cdquarles says:

    Re LED automobile headlights, if they’re blue, they bother me. If they’re yellow, they don’t. I have yellow cataracts; so the loss of contrast bothers me and thus the yellow sunglasses don’t help. I also have glaucoma now and will be having a checkup in January before undergoing surgery. The current plan is having the cataracts removed while they’re there doing the glaucoma work. So I expect to have much better vision soon.

  209. Larry Ledwick says:

    Just throw this out there to add to the electric car debate – the hidden infrastructure cost of electric cars everyone is ignoring.

  210. YMMV says:

    “The Millennials will suddenly become less interested in socialism once they inherit the Boomers wealth…”

    Some of them, but there are so many new millionaires who are very pro-socialism. Hollywood stars and Silicon Valley stars for example. Those have a big media presence, so I can’t generalize to all the millennial or gen-x rich. Having money does not always make you conservative.

    Polls show the capitalism-socialism split is about 60-40. Roughly.

    For youth, socialism gets over half.

    Take all the polls with a grain or two of salt, because so much depends on what these terms mean to those individuals and what associations they have. Take the difference between socialism and democratic socialism (if any — to you and me, but to them, who knows?).

    The old-school Marxists thought the path to socialism was a revolution.
    The new-school Marxists know the path to socialism is lined with perks and freebies.

  211. E.M.Smith says:

    I’m having a Happy Dance moment.

    Realize I’m a White Hat Security Professional who has been employed to find the edge case flaws in security. It is my profession to exploit limits in systems so I can then fix / patch / close them.

    Well, 5 years ago I found an edge case in the One ID program in Florida. I ended up with both a Florida One ID driver licence AND a California licence, despite them saying I can only have one AND following their rules exactly.

    Time passes, and about a year ago I had my California licence expire. I go in to renew it. “Did you get a licence in another State?” I gave a reasonable story, took the test, got my licence renewed. BUT did they tattle to Florida?

    Well, I just checked my Florida licence status. VALID.

    So untill 2023 I still have two identities and 2 licenses.

    No I’ll not do anything evil with them. As pointed out, my purpose and profession is to fix security exposures. The big takeaway from this is just that the One ID program has flaws. Interpret this as bad or exploitable is up to you.

    In any case, by 2023 my ability to play this particular exploit ends as I have no California address to use, then.

    But for now, I have a successful exploit happy dance :-)

  212. Larry Ledwick says:

    Ref the green on blue shooting in Pensacola Floridia.
    The second comment on this post is pretty funny.

  213. YMMV says:

    Larry Ledwick: “Just throw this out there”
    Like throwing a grenade? But it is a good test of your BS detector. Is there a single thing in it that is true except that renewable power is more expensive? But people believe what they want to believe.

    You can google the text and find that it is copied from something dating back to at least 2016, and comments then say “I’ve received this email annually for about the last 3 years”.

    It started with a Fox video clip in 2012.
    “Eric Bolling test drives Chevy Volt
    Feb. 02, 2012 – 6:06 – ‘The Five’s’ take on the electric car”

    It wasn’t a great moment for journalism.

    Eric Bolling: February 28, 2012
    “ALERT! there is an email circulating the blogosphere>>> I have no idea who or where it came from.”

    In this posts, he claims he pays $1.16 per kWh. He says he drives the Lincoln Tunnel every day, so he must live in NY or NJ. I see the current price there is 12 to 20 cents per kWh. In 2012? Probably less.

    He really did not understand the Volt’s niche. (an EV with an ICE generator built in)
    Evidently nobody else does either, since it has been discontinued and I don’t recall any other manufacturers in this niche.

    GM didn’t understand either. If you are going to sell expensive cars, sell them to the people who don’t mind paying lots of money. Sell on quality, looks, or whatever. But don’t try to sell an expensive cheap car.

    “If you’re going to sling BS, don’t try it with a Texan!”
    by Buzz | Posted on 17 May, 2017

  214. Larry Ledwick says:

    Yet another alternative news feed – Paul Joseph Watson started his own news site it looks like.


    For example:

  215. jim2 says:

    YMMV – I also found discrepancies in the BC Hydro article. But I also found some in a rebuttal article:


    This article points out there are 3 levels of chargers: 120V/20A, 240V/80A, and 480V/300A. So, the time to charge will depend on the device used.

    However, this article claims that the 240V/80A version is similar to a clothes dryer. That amounts to 19,200 watts!!! This guy must have a dryer that will dry all of AOC’s clothes at one time in one minute!!!

    My new clothes dryer requires 240V/30A. And I have ZERO 80 Amp circuits of any kind – even to the electric range.

    So, if I wanted to charge my electric vehicle in a vaguely reasonable amount of time, I WOULD have to upgrade my service!!!

    Of course, YMMV.

  216. E.M.Smith says:

    The Volt was discontinued because GM killed off the ICE car that was the same chassis. GM regularly does this. Uses one platform for several cars. Then a dicision to end the base model kills them all.

    GM made one of the best RVs in the world in the 70s. Front wheel drive and used as a prop in SciFi shows as if looked so futuristic. They are still around today, kept runnung by True Believers. But killed off in production when the Oldsmobile base fwd car got the ax. No more drivetrains.

    The replacement RV didn’t even come close…

    The Volt didn’t have enough volume to support the chassis on its own, so a drivetrain w/o a body.

    GM regulary kills off the good to make more of the crap. Why I have not owned a GM product since the 70s.

  217. E.M.Smith says:

    Oh, and per electric “service”:

    That isn’t a socket or breaker. It typically refers to the wires from the pole and breaker box when used by folks talking about house power.

    I helped my Dad upgrade our home from a 100 Amp service to 200 amp long ago. New breaker box and riser, new wires from the pole by PG&E.
    Then we wired in an electric clothes dryer on 240 V 30 A.

    So what the guy was saying is that the old homes have 100 Amp to the breaker box, and to add a 240 V 32 A charger in the garage would require an upgrade to the house to a 200 Amp service to support both the charger and the rest of the house. That lets you charge in under 24 hours…

    This says Superchargers are up to 150 kW per car (half that if both stalls used)

    The Super Chargers are 400 VDC and take about an hour for 80% or about 1.5 for full.

    The service will be at least 480 V, so figure 150, 000 W / 480 V for about 320 A. That’s a serious service installation anywhere. My Cray took 750 kVA (roughly kW ignoring power factor) and required a special transformer the size of a small car. So will 5 Superchargers. There were 2 available in the country when we ordered service…

    IIRC, most 240 V chargers are 32 Amp and take about 20 times as long. Overnight.

    This says Tesla reccomends a 60 Amp circuit
    I’ve seen that on industrial equipment, but never a home. You WILL need a service upgrade from the power company. IF uptake exceeds a few percenrage of homes, everthing back to the generators will need to double.

    You CAN charge at 120 V 15 A but it takes all day…and night…and the next day…

    Basically only useful for minor top up if you do a few miles a day.

    The unavoidable bottom line is that motor fuel is on the order of the existing grid scale, so replacing it with electricity requires replacing and doubling the whole grid and generators clear down to the garages and carports.

  218. Larry Ledwick says:

    Larry Ledwick: “Just throw this out there”
    Like throwing a grenade? But it is a good test of your BS detector. Is there a single thing in it that is true except that renewable power is more expensive? But people believe what they want to believe.

    Are you commenting on this item?
    Larry Ledwick says:
    6 December 2019 at 6:30 pm
    WTF ???????

    I am not sure what your point is – the message of the item I posted, is obvious and very simple, that if a large fraction of the people who drive cars shift to electric cars they will totally over load our electrical grid infrastructure which already is on the edge of melt down when everyone turns on electrical appliances when they get home from work. That already pushes the local grids to the limit on hot days causing blackouts and blown transformers.

    It would require massive upgrade of pole transformers, substations and home electrical panels and meters to be able to reliably supply the required peak power that a large number of users would expect to be available for their cars and normal home power demands.

    The electrical grid is sized and engineered for the electrical power demands of decades ago in the majority of neighborhoods.

    What is posted in some chain email some people allegedly get routinely, or what Eric Bolling said in a review of a car not even mentioned in the image, is absolutely irrelevant to the point of the text in that image!

    I don’t know about you, but I have much better things to do than transcribe text in an image and google it to see where it was likely copied from. Message of text is really very simple and has nothing to do with all those other issues like the Chevy Volt niche or car reviews by talking heads folks.

    The charging station sizes I see listed are typically in the range of 3.6 kw, 7 kw, or 22 kw.

    A home electrical range with all 4 stove top burners turned on draws about 5 kw, so even the small charger stations would be the equivalent of doubling the number of electrical ranges drawing power during peak load time when everyone gets home from work (both cooking and charging the car). The high power station would increase the home power draw to a bit over 5x what it would draw if just the stove was running full tilt during peak demand. Multiply that by several homes on the block, and you have exceeded the power draw the pole top transformers and local grid and substation was designed to provide by a significant factor.

    To minimize expenses the power companies only replace infrastructure like pole top transformers when they fail or loads exceed their limits (ie building permit to upgrade service for circuits not originally installed). As a result many pole top transformers were engineered and sized for power loads typical of 20-40 years ago, and are on the verge of melt down during peak summer load as it is.

    Most home service panels have 100 amp or 200 amp service (older homes may have a fraction of that possibly as low as 30 amp service in old neighborhoods)

    Modern high tech homes might have up to 400 amp service, so a 22 kw charging point could draw as much current as 5 typical entire house hold panels at full load.

    That would require complete re-engineering the local grid to meet those power demands on top of normal domestic electrical demands. Guess who pays for that re-engineering and up grade? All power subscribers whether they have an electric vehicle charging point or not.

  219. YMMV says:

    jim2: my dryer has two 30 A breakers to make a 240 V circuit. 30*120 + 30*120 Watts.
    Plus, you never run a circuit at full load, so max is only 80% of that.

    If you want to rewire your garage, there are YouTube videos for that.

    And technical sites too.

    San Diego Gas & Electric has a graph showing dryer versus charger power usage:

    Click to access ResComm%20EVSE%20Permit%20Guidelines%20v3_Final_attach.pdf

    The anonymously quoted “executive” (probably fake) had concerns about the effect on the electrical infrastructure. Which is something real executives should be planning for (when everybody has an EV), because politicians are planning for that. Meanwhile, back in the real world, a few electric cars here and there, no worries. And those who can afford a Tesla (or even a Leaf) can afford to upgrade their electrical service, and I doubt those people are living in houses with 75 A service. I don’t know what the building codes are everywhere, but insurance companies don’t like underpowered houses either.

    If you calculate the money you would spend on charging an EV compared to running your refrigerator, you might be surprised.

    E.M.: Interesting about the chassis. Volt didn’t get any brakes.

    The Volt’s end was also hastened by other factors, like the price. Aside from the hybrid tech and a few other cool features, it really is a gussied-up Cruze. […]
    It also didn’t help that Chevy added the Bolt, a pure electric car with crossover looks offering 238 miles on a charge. That’s moonshot territory. The Bolt is slightly more expensive, but not enough that it wouldn’t be cross-shopped with the Volt, especially in the same showroom. The Bolt’s a great car. It really has elevated GM’s image and positioned it rightly as a technology leader. Good for the company, but bad for the Volt.


  220. jim2 says:

    YMMV said: my dryer has two 30 A breakers to make a 240 V circuit. 30*120 + 30*120 Watts.

    This is wrong. The breakers are IN SERIES. If you are trying to calculate the watts absorbed by the breaker, you would multiply the voltage drop across the breaker (not much) by the amps going through it. You obviously know nothing about electronic – but I do.

    To get the watts consumed, you would have to measure the voltage across the AC input to the charger, and that will be 240 volts or thereabouts. Then you would have to measure the amps through one of the wires feeding the charger. Then multiply volts * amps to get the watts, and that does not include a correction for phase if needed – that depends on the reactance of the input terminals of the charger.

    Now since the article in question stated one would need a 80 amp breaker, I infer that a 60 amp, 240 volt wouldn’t do. So at a minimum we are talking 240*60 = 14,400 watts – still a whopping lot!

  221. YMMV says:

    Larry Ledwick: “if a large fraction of the people who drive cars shift to electric cars they will totally over load our electrical grid infrastructure”

    That is a valid consideration. But the content of the text-image is BS/fake. Serious discussions need facts, not gossip.

    If you look at what happened to film and cameras, the future probably does mostly consist of electric vehicles. Just need to solve that battery problem ;-)
    So this is a discussion that needs to happen. Just when the greens are shutting down power sources, the greens are increasing the electrical demands.

  222. jim2 says:

    And of course, this entire charger conversation ignores the fact that I can load about 200 miles worth of gasoline into my fuel tank in about a minute.

  223. Larry Ledwick says:

    Please itemize what is fake about it!

    That is a valid consideration. But the content of the text-image is BS/fake. Serious discussions need facts, not gossip.

    I see nothing at all incorrect in that piece. What are you inferring is incorrect or gossip. He is making a general statement about the grid capacity and the power demands to charge large numbers of electrical cars. Which by the way will likely follow moores law and in a few years there will be 40 kw charging stations and residents will want a 15 – 20 kw charging station in their garage not a 3-7 kw slow charge station.

    Teslas do need approx 75 amp service to provide a 9 KW charging station which is approximately the median of the power requirements for legitimate charging stations. Since an average older home does have about 100 amp service (my apartment has a 125 amp box) to provide reasonable charging times, my garage unit would have to about double its power panel capacity. It currently has a single double socket 15 amp wall plug.At least one person in my complex has a Tesla. (ie not plug into a 15 amp wall socket and wait 2 days for your car to charge)

    He is stating a fact, the power grid was not engineered to supply the power demands electric cars will make on it if they are any significant fraction of the automobile universe being used in a community.

  224. Larry Ledwick says:

    This reference shows the Tesla median charging station needs 80 amp service for level 2 charging at from 3.7 – 17.2 kw (high side of that is 1.5x normal home power service max rating.

    The level 3 charging station needs a 480v 300 amp service capable of delivering 140 kw. vs the typical 12-24 kw service provided to most homes.


  225. YMMV says:

    jim2: “I can load about 200 miles worth of gasoline into my fuel tank in about a minute”

    Exactly. Not only does it take a long time to charge an EV, even on the fastest chargers, when more than a few have EVs, the wait in the line up at the electron pumps will be even longer. It does not scale.

    I am hoping in the future we can continue to use liquid fuels even if the engines are electric.
    I don’t see any breakthroughs on that coming soon.

    On the other hand, if your second car is an EV which only gets used for short trips around town, then a home charger would work fine. You would probably end up with a 240 V system.

    Now, ianal and not an electrician either, and I don’t mess with 240 V or anything higher, but to clarify the comments above. To install a breaker for a dryer or a charger, you could go down to your local hardware store and buy a 30 A double-pole circuit breaker for 240 V. This consists of two 30 A 120 V circuit breakers with a tie-bar linking the switches. One of those goes on one 120 V side of the 240 V bus in the box, the other goes on the other.

    Whatever the power available in the circuit is, it is what is actually used that matters.
    For a level 2 charger, that is 7 kW. Which is 30 A.

    Keep in mind that you only need to recharge the battery for as much as you drive. It’s not necessarily at “empty” every night.

    (I like being right, so please anytime I say something wrong, convince me and I will switch to the right side.)

  226. Larry Ledwick says:

    The issue is the peak power situation when the neighborhood maxes out the service and starts blowing transformers or destabilizing the grid.

    Brutally cold weather, you had to do some Christmas shopping, EV is nearly discharged, come home and plug it in then start fixing the big family dinner, have all 4 burners on the stove going, a turkey in the oven and the kids are in the shower (electric water heater) – you are feeling chilled because you let so much cold air in while unloading groceries and presents, so you crank up the thermostat a bit.

    Now your home is drawing 5-6 kw for the stove, you have 3.8 kw of base board heating, 2 kw for the water heater. You have Christmas lights up, so after you turn them on and all the lights in the house you have another 1.5 kw for lighting. You turn on the counter top toaster oven to brown some dinner rolls because the turkey is in the regular oven another 1.0 kw, and your husband puts a cup of coffee in the microwave and puts it on high to warm it up 1.2 kw, and your tesla is sucking up 9 kw because the battery is nearly empty and it is dumping power as fast as the battery will take it.

    5.5 kw stove
    3.8 kw baseboard hear
    2.0 kw for water heater
    1.5 kw for lights
    1.0 kw for toaster oven
    1.2 kw for microwave
    9.0 kw for the Tesla
    total power draw 24 kw which is the absolute max for a 200 amp service drop to your home or 2x max rating for a 100 amp service drop.

    You might get away with it briefly, but if enough of your neighbors do the same thing, the combined power draw is well beyond design load for the local grid.

    The problem is the grid engineers figured that most of the time only some percentage of the homes will be running near max service load, so they sized everything for some fraction of that (to save money) – say 70% of expected load if every single home turned on everything. Most of the time that works, but now everyone is pushing the envelope and their planned equipment replacement budget gets blown completely out of the water, because they are replacing pole power transformers at a substantially faster rate than normal, have to run heavier wires to service the neighborhood as upgrades happen to carry the higher currents, and that $100,000 transformer at the substation says screw it and has a bad day followed by a big bang and light show then lots of darkness in the neighborhood.

    Systems design plan on a certain rate of replacement and a certain rate of increase in load over time, but we have already used up that cushion with the explosion of home electronics central AC shift away from natural gas to electric heat, not to mention a few million wall warts constantly drawing power and instant on appliances in stand by mode over the last decade or two.

    His point was there is a huge hidden cost of infrastructure that no one is talking about for EV’s and it needs to be added to the life cycle cost calculation for transitioning to EV’s in large numbers.
    Right now only the engineers are talking about it.

  227. jim2 says:

    YMMV – I was just going by the article I found that said the 240 v charger should have a 80 A feed. Of course you wouldn’t use all 80 amps.

    The electrical service coming into your house has 2 120 volt lines and one neutral. A 120 volt outlet uses the neutral and one of the 120 v lines. A 220 or 240 volt outlet uses both 120 volt lines. For a residential installation the voltage will be 220 due to the phase difference between the 120 volt lines.

    Now, keeping in mind both 120 volt lines are needed for a 220 volt outlet, one then must consider safety. The breaker is there to open the circuit in case of a short. If we took the cover off the 220 volt outlet, we could short either 120 volt line to ground. So in order to protect a 220 volt circuit you use 2 breakers that are physically joined together. That way if either leg is shorted out, the both 120 volt legs of the circuit will be disconnected.

    If your level 2 charger is 7 kw, then yes, you would be drawing about 31 amps, about what a clothes dryer would be. But then, I don’t understand why the article called for an 80 amp supply.

    One of the Tesla chargers needs a 60 amp breaker. Here’s the Tesla site.


    So maybe the rebuttal article was wrong about the 80 amps. At any rate, the Tesla instructions do say step 1 is to find an electrician :)

  228. Larry Ledwick says:

    I think it may be to cover variations in supply voltage different locations have different nominal line voltages (110 , 115, 120 v etc. are common single phase nominal voltages depending on how the local circuit is set up. To get the rated charge current out you would draw higher amps if your local line voltage is at low nominal voltage. with a +/- 6% tolerance on voltage a nominal 75 amp would need 80 amps at low limit voltage to deliver the same power.



    At my house my actual line voltage hovers near 126 -127 V but occasionally dips down around 124 Volts. At the moment the UPS panel is showing 126 Volts.

    Especially in rural areas where the have long service drops to the homes and long runs of power lines from the power stations it can end up much lower.

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  230. E.M.Smith says:

    I’ve been wiring houses since I was 7 years old, businesses shortly after (Dad was a working electrician at one point…). As a computer room guy, I’ve managed the build out of computer rooms with all sorts of power demands. On at least 2 occasions I’ve manufactured adapters so that the “wrong” plugs could be used for a rapid installation, and on one occasion made 2 x 100 foot 240 V “drop cords” since we had a hard schedule to move a Sun Server and the electrician (really Facilities Manager calling the electrician) was uncooperative in fitting out the new room. Layed it in the wire tray from the old room ;-)

    So I know a bit about electric power.

    The description of household 240 V as 2 x 120 to neutral out of phase is correct. It’s a center tapped 240 V transformer on the pole. Industrial sites get 208 3 phase with 120 between any 2 phases. There’s other options as well. (We had a 400+ VAC 3 phase in one shop, but I forget the exact voltage).

    For the home, you use single breakers to get 120 volt and you use 2 x 120 V breakers (to neutral) in the two hot leads of the 240 V (to each other) service, ganged together. I’ve installed a lot of them…

    Per the 32 A vs 60 A vs 80 A vs “service”:

    Teslas can charge at different rates from different line power outlets. Tesla RECOMMENDS you get a 60 Amp charger and plug. You don’t run a 60 Amp appliance on a 60 Amp breaker or it WILL at some point pop on a hot day, so you get an 80 Amp *service* for your 60 Amp outlet.

    Since houses have their service level bumped by units of 100 Amp (in all cases I’ve seen since the 50 Amp of the 1960s…) your home of 100 Amp or 200 Amp *service* will be bumped up by 100 Amps of service ability to support the 80 Amp breaker for your 60 Amp outlet.

    The guy in the utility business who said it would need a double of capacity is right for most houses built prior to 2000.

    BTW, just had the lights go out for about 20 seconds, then come back on. UPS carried the office through it without a hitch or loss of datacoms. Nice ;-)

  231. YMMV says:

    Larry Ledwick: “Please itemize what is fake about it!”

    I think the Texan did a good job of that (link given previously):

    “I see nothing at all incorrect in that piece. What are you inferring is incorrect or gossip. He is making a general statement about the grid capacity and the power demands to charge large numbers of electrical cars.”

    He is, and he is not necessarily wrong, but who is he? Is he the anonymous whistleblower who shall not be named? There was no link to the source of the quote. Or is he someone just made up to provide some authority to the quote? The quote here starts “I was talking to a Neighbor, a BC Hydro executive” and the longer quote in Texan article says “here on Vancouver Island! I live 30 kilometers outside of Victoria near Sidney”. I know enough about Canada to know that that is the only place in the whole country which has a decent climate, and that it is also the hot spot in Canada for the green movement. Canada as a whole is to the left and BC is left of that, definitely part of the Left Coast. He does not use Canadian spelling. Is it fake or is there a rogue executive in BC Hydro?

    It doesn’t take much searching to find out that BC Hydro is all-in for EV and not worried (publicly) about infrastructure inadequacies. Maybe they should be, I don’t know. If everyone gets an EV, but that is a big if. Not only that, but when the trend to ban home and building heating with fossil fuels takes off in Canada, that will really increase the electrical demand! (Don’t enough Canadians already live in Phoenix and Florida?)

    “Rebates for Level 2 chargers: new for 2019”
    “* 50% of costs, up to $350, for the purchase and installation of a Level 2 charging station in a single-family home
    * A limited-time top-up offer from BC Hydro for single-family homes, increasing the potential rebate amount to $700 (available to BC Hydro customers)”

    Features related to your preferences
    Amperage: Level 2 chargers are available in models that deliver between 15- and 80-Amps. The higher the amperage the faster the charging.
    Networked: Some chargers will connect to the internet so drivers can start, stop, and monitor charging with a smartphone.
    Smart EV chargers: Smart EV chargers ensure the most efficient charging by automatically adjusting the amount of electricity being sent to an EV based on timing and load factors. Some smart EV charging stations can also provide you with data on your usage.

    “Electric vehicle rebates”
    * $3,000 for purchase or lease of a new battery electric vehicle (BEV/EV).
    * $1,500 for purchase or lease of a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV).
    * $3,000 for purchase or lease of a hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle (FCEV).

    Note there are also Federal rebates and tax credits. A quick search shows $2500-5000 and up to $7500. It would be


    Can the BC Hydro electrical system handle the increase in demand?
    The increased demand from more EVs is something we’ve been planning for and will be able to supply. We’re predicting there will be around 350,000 EVs on B.C. roads by 2030. This is estimated to add an additional 1,050 gigawatt hours of electricity load per year. The majority of charging takes place overnight, which is when residential power load from things like cooking, heating and lighting is the lowest.

    We have also examined a future scenario with a dozen EV owners on the same street charging all at once. If 12 EVs are plugged into Level 2 chargers, this is simply the equivalent of running a dozen ovens at the same time.

    We continually monitor the usage of each distribution feeder and perform equipment upgrades as needed.

    BC uses Smart Meters too. The future they plan for will need more infrastructure — and nuclear power (the word that can’t be said in the presence of greens). But I predict that that future is much longer off than they think. Gradual build-outs are often better anyway.

  232. jim2 says:

    EM – right. I was thinking in 3-phase :)

  233. Larry Ledwick says:

    Larry Ledwick: “Please itemize what is fake about it!”
    I think the Texan did a good job of that (link given previously):

    (Sigh) not sure why you feel a need to debunk an article I never even referenced?
    If I had wanted to talk about Volt EVs or the market position of BC hydro in that article I would have posted a direct link to it or a related reference.

    There is nothing “fake” in the statement in that image – that is the item you asserted was fake. and which I was confused what you had a problem with

    I posted a quick image link of text that made a very simple statement, rather than composing the same exact concept in my own words because I saw it as I was getting ready to shut down and go to bed.

    EV cars have a lot of hidden infrastructure needs we need to talk about!
    Like modifications of the entire energy grid to handle 2-5x the load it is currently designed to handle

    That is it!
    It does not matter who made the statement!
    It does not matter what article it came from!

    It was a simple thought pointing out the blind spot in EV buyers and the sales pitches.

    There is nothing to debunk!
    I don’t care who said it because
    a) The observations was both obvious and correct
    b) I made no effort to appeal to authority (that it why I prefaced it with the disclaimer just throwing this out there), that first sentence just happened to be glued on the front of the text that mattered and I could not edit it out without hosting a modified image some place else.

    It was a wise observation in my view, relative to ongoing discussions we have had here many times for a very long time regarding the fact that “sparky cars” are not the panacea they are made out to be in the media and green propaganda outlets, and pointed to a problem being ignored by all who pitch EV’s.

    It would have been every bit as relevant and accurate if that first sentence had been “a comment over heard at a bus stop”

    What you found when you went down the rabbit hole on this about that Hydro company is completely irrelevant to the point of the post. I had no knowledge that article even existed – and even if I had, I could care less, as it was not related to what I was trying to communicate.

    If someone reports that they noticed snow is wet and cold only correct if they are a weatherman?

    He in relatively few words explained a huge problem with EV’s, which even if I had recomposed it myself I could not have done significantly better in my own words.

    Your only relevant comment so far to the original post is :
    BC uses Smart Meters too. The future they plan for will need more infrastructure — and nuclear power (the word that can’t be said in the presence of greens). But I predict that that future is much longer off than they think. Gradual build-outs are often better anyway.

    Partially agree but I suspect it is much closer than they are willing to publicly admit.
    (should have been your opening comment)
    They have to plan ahead in that business but the supporting quote you point to above.

    We have also examined a future scenario with a dozen EV owners on the same street charging all at once. If 12 EVs are plugged into Level 2 chargers, this is simply the equivalent of running a dozen ovens at the same time.

    Is disingenuous market spin saying -” it’s no problem” when there is a very real problem when real charging systems draw considerably more power than running a typical stove, and easily foreseen future (faster) charging systems will undoubtedly draw even more – the physics demand it, if you want to slap 100 miles worth of electric power in the battery (or super capacitor) in a matter of minutes. Targets which many have alluded to as future expectations of both the market and researchers trying to satisfy that market.

    We know that the minimum acceptable charging system to most consumers is going to be the 7 kw level 2 class systems (in fact Tesla and others actively discourage simply plugging into a common 15 amp 2kw capacity plug – it is only suitable for an emergency top off when a real charging station does not exist.)

    Normal growth in expectations will push those systems to 10 Kw systems then 12 Kw systems, and installation of commercial class high power level 3 charging stations will draw power off the same grid as the home owner, so the infrastructure costs will inevitably be passed to the consumers in their power rates, regardless if they have an EV.

    (although I suspect a rate trap is being hidden in those smart meters – they will wait until a large universe of users are irrevocably committed to EV charging and then bust their chops with a high rate charge when they need to fast charge the car.)

    I live just a couple hundred yards from an office building that has 4 of those charging points out front of their building. They are loading the same transmission lines that I load when I turn on my electric stove.

    Like bit coin miners this is a silent hidden power demand that the average consumer is completely oblivious to. Most non-technical folks have no clue about the upgrades which will be necessary to service an exponentially growing demand for electric power, and what it will do to their power bill.
    They also have no concept of the infrastructure limits of the current power grid until the lights go out.

  234. E.M.Smith says:

    OK, stepping into the food fight:

    Larry’s point is exactly right. The idea cars are all going to charge between midnight and 4 A.M. is silly. Some folks will, many not. I’ll never have grid connected alien control of what I do with what I buy.

    Furthermore, code does NOT let you install another 80 amp circuit without a service upgrade just by promising to use it at night. The GRID and house service WILL go up.

    The “Texan” response is seriously flawed and snarky.

    He has a 30 A charger and uses that to claim it isn’t a problem when Tesla reccomend a 60 Amp.

    He poo-poos the idea people only have 100 A service. I just checked. I have 100 A service here in Silicon Valley with an all electric kitchen OEM as built. That’s normal all over the place. 200 A was rare as recently as 1980 here.

    The Volt, by his statement, has abouf 10 kW-hr in the battery. That’s nearly nothing. Typical of cars is 20 to 30 kW engines. So you have 1/2 hour of full power… compare Tesla at 150 kW-hr. It is useless to cite the Volt when the Tesla exists.

    He SELLS THE VOLT. All bias all the time… I doubt most of his numbers on that alone.

    The only point he has is the average cost of electricity, and even that has issues. I’m pretty sure the “over a dollar” is doubtful, but not impossible. California has a $1 U.S./kW-hr tarrif in summer in the Central Valley during peak AC demand. Canadian $ is lower than the US so the claimed rate is inside that range. We also get penalty rates if you use more than the approved low limit.

    My tarrif is 19 ¢ baseline with penalty to 39 ¢ and PG&E has filed for $1/2 base. It is possible that the guy in question lives in some expensive green zone like California. You can’t just dismiss that.

    There’s more but it gets nit picky.

    USA uses 36 quads of petroleum. It uses 37 quads of electricity generation. To replace petroluem with electricity requires doubling the electric system. Period. Not negotiable.

  235. YMMV says:

    OK, OK, I’m sorry I brought it up. My estimate was also that replacing petroleum with electricity would require doubling the electric system. We can all agree that that is not so easy as the greens make out. It’s not going to happen. IMO.

    The details about charging and everything were good to learn, but that was not the point, since there is little we disagree on.

    Now I understand about what was meant by “tossing it out”. My apologies to Larry. You might have guessed by now that I consider the text inflammatory :-) Similar to the accusations against Kavanaugh or Trump. Somebody somewhere heard something. I don’t know who wrote the original message; he is the one I accuse of making it up. Or not. Larry’s wording is better.

    California has the most Teslas. I’m sure they will figure it out first :-)

  236. jim2 says:

    YMMV – I’m glad you brought it up. I learned something as I suspect others did. To me, that’s the real point here.

  237. philjourdan says:

    Just to add more to the “Hu Flung Poo” debate about EVs……

    California is unquestionably at the forefront of pushing everyone to EVs (even have a law now). But apparently, probably due to the weather there, it has the worst home capacity to service them (if what EM says is true). For over the past 50 years, most new houses in the Old Dominion have had 220Amp service. And it is needed since the heat source for the past 30 years) has been a heat pump, that uses electric heat as a backup.

    So where the weather is conducive, the home electric is not. And where the weather is not so great, it is, but then you have to decide – get oil (or gas) backup for your heatpump or forgo heat when the temp gets below 30 degrees.

  238. Larry Ledwick says:

    Larry. You might have guessed by now that I consider the text inflammatory :-)

    Not a problem I just could not figure out what you were concerned about – just sort of caught me flat footed. All is well! :)

    In checking things I learned some new bits as well which is the point of digging into hot button issues and occasionally going down rabbit holes.

    As I mentioned a while back one of my co-workers has a Chevy volt. This recent blizzard was a learning experience for him – Uhhhh he is looking to buy a Jeep Rubicon.

    Mostly an issue of too little ground clearance on unplowed roads. Inside a city with well plowed road it appeared from his comments it would be no problem but could easily get high centered on a plow ridge due to low ground clearance (and the short charge range in the cold is also an issue for anyone who has to commute far).

  239. E.M.Smith says:


    California has natural gas so a lot of homes are plumbed for it for heat and a cheap heater is fine. In the L.A. basin and south, some apartments have a (almost never used) 2 kW resistance heater mounted in one wall… Old homes did not have AC…

    I saw some in my home town with 30 Amp screw in fuses in the main power feed (Dad and I converted the rentals to a regular breaker box..)

    It was considered a bit overkill when we put a 100 A service on my old home. Kitchen, heat, water heater all gas… so we’re talking 8 light bulbs and a toaster. Plus TV… we got the first one in town. B&W RCA about a 16? Inch roundish screen at $750 (or about $7500 in current dollars).

    The house was built between 1890 and 1910 (parts added over time). First wiring was bare wire knob & tube and light bulb hanging from the ceiling… I helped rewire if all to 2 wire romex inside the walls… and we upped the service from 30 A to 100 Amp, added a dryer and washer… and likely a 50 Amp was too much…

    There are a LOT of old houses still around.

    This one is about post W.W.II 1960 or so. Gas heat and water heater. Gas dryer. No built in AC. And a 100 A service. There are dozens of miles of this built about the same time with the same services.

    I’ve not seen a 200 A service here in older homes other than mansions.

  240. tom0mason says:

    US Sugar beet production hits a low …
    “America will import more sugar this year than it has in 4 decades” is the headline in this piece —

    About half the United States’ sugar normally comes from beets. According to statistics from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the beet harvest was down about 10 percent this year. The effects are now rippling through America’s food industry. Last month, two big sugar producers announced that they won’t be able to deliver all the sugar they’d promised to candy-makers and bakers, including Tippin’s, a pie-maker in Kansas City, Kan.

  241. tom0mason says:

    ADVISORY EXTREMELY COLD WINTER AHEAD | Turn of the Century Weather Patterns

    Note on his YouTube channel he clarifies that he DOES NOT own the house he refers to in the beginning of the video.

    Meant to say “we have a house listed” not “we have a house” 😂 it’s not our house 😞 😢 I wish! here is the link to the marketing video https://youtu.be/HTdM8e31RP0

    Overall he sees the same as I do, that weather today in the USA (and indeed in Europe) is similar to the weather of the early 1900, the Gleissberg Minimum, and not so far looking quite like a Dalton or Maunder minimum.
    Also of note is this WUWT piece from 2014 — https://wattsupwiththat.com/2014/08/11/a-gleissberg-solar-minimum/

    In a recent paper “The Centennial Gleissberg Cycle and its Association with Extended Minima”, to be soon published in JGR/Space, Feynman and Ruzmaikin discuss how the recent extended minimum of solar and geomagnetic variability (XSM) mirrors the XSMs in the 19th and 20th centuries: 1810–1830 and 1900–1910.
    Edited abstract:
    Such extended minima also were evident in aurorae reported from 450 AD to 1450 AD. The paper argues that these minima are consistent with minima of the Centennial Gleissberg Cycles (CGC), a 90–100 year variation observed on the Sun, in the solar wind, at the Earth and throughout the Heliosphere. The occurrence of the recent XSM is consistent with the existence of the CGC as a quasi-periodic variation of the solar dynamo. Evidence of CGC’s is provided by the multi-century sunspot record, by the almost 150-year record of indexes of geomagnetic activity (1868-present), by 1,000 years of observations of aurorae (from 450 to 1450 AD) and millennial records of radionuclides in ice cores. …

    The sun definitely drives the global temperatures and climate patterns, if only consensus would get its heads out of the CO2 bubble and look.

  242. E.M.Smith says:

    Any reason you are still using the W.O.O.D. from last month? It’s OK, just slow to load from being so full.

    Yeah, I saw that Christmas prep video.

    I’ve noticed he uses the word “glut” exactly backwards, to mean shortage. But has the right idea. There will be reductions in crop production. I think he’s also watching too much Ice Age Farmer and picking up some of the Doom and Shortage mind set.

    A 10% or 15% shortage is not the end of the world. We could take that out of the biofuels mandate and everyone would be happier.

    Now if the weather gets even worse, and we don’t adapt , yeah, then it gets bad. But if everyone only eats 1/2 as many fries at fast food places? That’s a big health win, not a problem.

    How much money is available from saying “the sun does it”? There’s the reason it must be blamed on people with money…

  243. tom0mason says:

    “Any reason you are still using the W.O.O.D. from last month? ”
    Cause I was half asleep — long day.

  244. E.M.Smith says:

    It happens. My spelling gets “creative” when short slept, or early morning….

    Ran into an interesting article on storing meat under lard. Like confit, cooked meat with warm lard poured over, keeps for weeks to months. I’m temped to make a jar just as an experiment. I have limited meat storage in the freezer, and reduced meat availability is coming.. Then canned hams and SPAM get tiresome after a while.

    That’s the real loss in crop failures. The herds get reduced.

  245. Larry Ledwick says:

    I have pondered that as well, it is basically what pemmican is.

    Only in pemmican the meat component is dried jerky pounded to powder then mixed with fat and other ingredients. If nothing else a great way to preserve frozen meats if the power is out for an extended period of time.


  246. Larry Ledwick says:

    Using modern technology you could purchase store bought jerky, then grind it, mix with processed tallow or lard then seal in the vacuum seal a meal style bags.
    Protect from light with an over wrap of aluminum foil.
    If you want to be creative, make foil pouches with a hot melt glue gun and after inserting the pemmican seal a meal pack, push out the excess air and iron the edges to heat seal the foil pouch.

    It should keep for a very long time

  247. Larry Ledwick says:

    The house just passed the articles of impeachment with a straight party line vote.
    Zero Republican votes.

  248. philjourdan says:

    “My spelling gets “creative”

    Yea, I saw that- PhilNojrdan:

    But as my spelling is bad and I have no excuse, I do not say much about others. :-)

  249. E.M.Smith says:

    What can I say…. Sake is involved on Fridays, other days it varies :-)

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