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:
Doing nicely. I’ve planted out some Russian Kale, more collards, and some more purple sweet potato slips. Mostly just getting the small bits in starter pots into the dirt before I’m gone for a week.
I’ve got a Garden Bunny! A local wild bunny has decided my back yard garden is a nice place to settle in. Looks like about a 2 pound small bunny, in drab brown. Likes to take some morning sun at the back fence line. So far, seems to not be eating anything in the garden, preferring the local plants that it knows. Bunny digestion is very sensitive to changes of diet as that can disrupt the hind-gut fermentation process of this small herbivore. So it is reasonable that it would be tentative about trying these new, to it alien, plants. Eventually I expect it to nibble a bit, and then one day find the collards mowed down ;-)
IF it ever becomes enough of a problem, I can put up the same dog run fencing I used in California around the garden bits. For now, I’m enjoying the show, and that the bunny thinks we’re good folks.
It has a shed to hide under, lots of food to eat, and I’ve put a water dish in the ground that gets auto-magically filled when I water the garden, or if it rains.
To me, it looks like a smallish European Rabbit. However, searching on Florida Rabbits, it also looks a lot like a Marsh Rabbit. We are about 100 yards from a minor “marsh” that is the edge of the lake and a water catchment point for this block of houses.
Marsh Rabbit- The Marsh Rabbit, Sylvilagus palustris, is found in freshwater and brackish marshes through out the state of Florida. The marsh rabbit moves about much more during daylight than the cottontail. It is reddish brown with a gray underside and tail, and is 16-18″ long. The marsh rabbit is slightly smaller, darker brown, and has coarser hair than the cottontail. It has a small inconspicuous tail that is dingy white on the underside and will often walk rather than hopping as most rabbits do. The marsh rabbit is distinguished from its cottontail cousin in another important way – it is a strong swimmer and is usually found close to water. In Florida, this habitat includes everything from fresh and brackish marshes to wet prairies and flooded agricultural fields. The diet of the Florida marsh rabbit consists of emergent aquatic plants and wetland plants including grasses, sedge, maidencane, broad-leafed herbs, and weeds. Marsh rabbits can breed year round but most often from December to June. Litters contain 1-6 young. The nests are lined with grass and breast fur and located on the ground in thickets, stumps or logs. By four weeks of age, the young rabbits are weaned and are foraging for themselves. Marsh rabbits are most active at night and at dawn and dusk.
Happy to share the space with a local. The bunny now accepts me in the yard, as long as I don’t approach it closer than about 40 feet. I expect that distance to shorten over time as it realizes I’m only interested in the plants and do not chase it.
Our back yard is fully fenced, but with a “bunny sized” gap at the gate corners; so the bunny has a nice “Dog Proof” private space ;-)
We’ll see how this develops over time. Given the preference for “weeds”, this could work out very well ;-)
I’ve bought a Ryobi electric tiller. It works relatively well. Tills up about an 11 inch by 16 inch chunk of sand in no time at all. I’ve used it to incorporate various plant matter into a strip along the fence. MUCH faster and easier than the shovel!
This will do very nicely for preparing a long bed along the fence line. I’ve got about 300 linear feet of it, I’d guess. I plan to plant it mostly to a combination of Runner Beans, Lima Beans (tall climbing type), Chayote vines, sweet potatoes, and whatever other vine I think would work well on a fence and be edible. This could take a while ;-)
I’m planting the Food Forest about 10 feet away from the fence. Eventually that gap may fill with garden too, but for now it is just lawn.
The tiller cost me about $80 at a factory blemished outlet. Only blemish I could find was the box was a bit chewed up / dented. The machine itself looked fine. Works fine too.
Next I need to get a lawn mower… Unlike California where folks use beard trimmers on their postage stamp sized scraps of “lawn”, here it comes by the acre and folks buy $4000 to $12000 giant racing mowers with several feet wide cutting decks… I’m thinking maybe a compromise of a “Garden Tractor” with a 3 foot or so cutter… Might be fun to have a dinky skip loader type bucket on it too ;-)
Maybe next year…
To The Bahamas
As California and Texas weather are making a run to California a pain, I’m headed to the Bahamas for a week or so. Boat Time calling ;-)
I have no idea IF I’ll have any internet connection, so y’all may need to “talk amongst yourselves” for a while.
I’ll be helping to return the boat from the Bahamas, and we certainly will not have internet while crossing the Gulf Stream.
FORD In My
The FORD Expedition is back from the mechanic. The “shudder” at “40 something” miles per hour is called “Torque Converter Shudder” and adding $22 of “LubeGard Shudder Fix” to the transmission oil has fixed it.
So as of now I have a fully working tow vehicle AND a cargo trailer. Figure in about April 2nd week (assuming the California Weather clears) I’ll be moving the last of my stuff out of California.
So far, I’m really liking this FORD. Repairs are MUCH cheaper than the Mercedes.
And yes. After a 1 week marathon drive to California & back to get one load of stuff needed for tax filing, and after the next week+ of Bahamas and boating home: I expect to then get in the FORD and tow a trailer to California and back a couple of times.
This is retirement?
Ukraine Is Shrinking more
Just a small note that Russia continues to just “Grind Down” the Ukrainian army. It looks like the Ukrainians are doing fixed site defense without a lot of skill at it; while the Russians are doing “incremental destruction”. The Russian strategy is working rather well. Send in a drone, identify assets (radars, launchers, vehicles, troops), send in other drones to destroy; when any remaining counter fire is sent at the attack drones, smash the launchers with rockets and artillery. Destroy troops with lots of artillery. After that, walk in and mop up with minimal losses of ground troops. Rinse and repeat.
Rumors of a “Ukrainian Offensive” are a laugh. Very little artillery shells or cannon. No assault vehicles to speak of. Air Power grounded. So what will they do? Send a Human Wave of 15 year old kids and retired old men at Russian hardened emplacements?
Ukraine has lost this war and is a Dead Man Walking. Just Mr. Z won’t admit it yet as his handlers want the war to last as long as possible / profitable. “Fighting to the last Ukrainian”…
Russia will wrap this up shortly. I’d guess about June, August at the latest. Winter freeze was only about 2 weeks and not enough to run tanks over the fields. Spring has brought a sea of deep mud and immobility. Drying will start soon, and when the ground solidifies, things will move fast. Tanks & F16s in 2024 are a fantasy. Ukraine will be gone by then (or at least their army and likely the government will be gone).
Politics Drags On
Biden has bailed out his Billionaire Buddies in Silicon Valley Bank. Looks like another DNC Money Laundry has hit on hard times… This bank ought to have gone belly up and BURNED the ESG Bigots and WEFies who were highly involved with it. IF they never suffer failure, this will not stop. The pain of failure is a necessary antiseptic for this lunacy.
THE basic problem for the banks is that they hold a lot of assets that have a long time period and a fixed rate. SVB in particular had a lot of 10 year Treasury Bonds. A bit dumb for a bank with short term deposits (though makes sense for insurance companies with long term obligations).
When The Fed is raising interest rates, long term debt like 10 to 30 year bonds drop a lot in price / value. Why buy a 20 year bond with a 2% rate if the new 20 year bond has a 6% rate? So the old one sells at a discount.
Well, as a bank, when your collateral is “discounted” you have less assets and need to find more somewhere. This was the root problem for SVB and Credit Suisse. SVB said they needed more, and a run started among their Venture Capitalist client base. C.S. asked their biggest buddy, Saudi, to buy in with more and they said NO, as any more put them over 10% regulatory limits.
This will be a problem for some other banks too, but not most of them; and certainly not the major retail banks. In any case, the national Central Banks will keep on bailing them out if they need it.
THE major consequence I see is that The Fed has now been put on notice that they need to stop the almost monthly rate hikes. This will stop the slide in bond values and stop the increase in bleeding banks. It is likely time to consider buying bonds again. TLT bond fund has been dropping steadily during the hikes, but just took an up-tick.
So watch that space.
San Bernardino Mountains are recording their highest snow pack EVER and more is on the way. Other parts of the Sierra Nevada are matching past records of 40-ish years or more.
Canadian Cold is reaching all the way to Texas and maybe the Gulf Coast with storms sprouting along the way. Lots of wind, too.
North East is getting walloped with snow and storms.
Not going to try crossing the country in record times towing a trailer in that. Thus the break to the Bahamas ;-)
But it is well worth noting that this is NOT “Global Warming”. Not only have such events happened before ( I’ve lived through them…); but these are cyclical COLD events.
The whole “Global Warming” narrative is just another WEF Scam. Period.
This will continue to be DIY for a while still.
For more recent events, see:
I’ve also gotten addicted to the Top Ten Memes of the week from WatchMAGA here:
They have interesting “bite” to them, along with a tendency to highlight the news of the week in memes, so good as a social attitude pointer too. Plus they are “way fun” ;-)
30th anniversary of the Blizzard of ’93 just passed. This last winter is a lot like that one was, just not quite as cold. Further back, this winter is a lot like those of the late 60s through 70s. We did have a nice thaw for about 2 weeks prior to the latest cold snap. Freeze yesterday, frost today and the day before yesterday. Brief warm-up prior to 4 to 7 days of cold nights. Sigh. Lord, it is soon to be spring, please bring on some nice, pleasant spring weather. The kind that doesn’t need the heater blasting. Just have to survive past Easter ;p.
Well, there’s another big cold Canadian wallop headed your way for about Sunday 19th. Then it starts to get better for a while…
It reminds me of the ’60s (when we had snow in the Central Valley of California, and again about 1973); but yeah, early ’90s my son & I played in the unusual snow in the Santa Cruz mountains ;-) Which has returned again this year…
“unprecedented” and “unique” if you are a 30 year old. Common and familiar if you are more than twice that…
E.M. Cold front associated with the upper-level low traversing the country middle has passed through DFW. No snow, but blustery wind and blowing rain. I hope your Bahamas trip is wonderful!
A sliver of Sunlight breaks through the storm clouds …
In a decision that jangled the nerves of some elected officials, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court last week reaffirmed a basic liberty established by the founding fathers: the right to be rude at public meetings.
The ruling sent waves of consternation across the state, where many local select board and school committee members have emerged battle-scarred from the coronavirus pandemic and its fierce disputes over masks, vaccines and remote learning. Stemming from a lawsuit filed against the town of Southborough, Mass., by a resident who said selectmen had silenced her unlawfully, the decision pushed back against attempts to mandate good manners.
Re: vining plants
Sweet potatoes vine, but I’ve read that if you trellis them, they won’t produce any potatoes. The vines put down little roots that somehow help the plant produce. I could be mis-remembering, so best to check and be sure.
We’ve had a really mild winter this year. My blueberries have had nice buds for about 3 weeks, and I’m worried a cold spell will kill them. I may have to cover them to be safe.
I just bought two columnar apple trees (needed two for pollination), which I’d never heard of until recently. They will grow in a large pot, and grow to about 8′ or 10′ but don’t really branch out. They produce in the first or second year, so they sounded perfect for my small yard. We’ll see how they do.
Have fun in the Bahamas!
Just found this re: trellised sweet potatoes:
Ukraine vs. Russia, 1914.
Blame it on Austria …?
Oh, no! It is biowarfare “clones” with high lethality. Color me unimpressed.
Well, you know, if you are over 82, with multiple co-morbidities, and they don’t give you antibiotics to treat pneumonia (which was the usual treatment before “the pandemic”), and they shove you on a vent, and pump you full of Remdesivir (how did that get the green light after it failed on Ebola?), you’re not gonna make it to 83.
It is very simple when you think about it. There was never a good test.
So, when we add all this up.
Was it ultimately cheaper to just pod, or truck, ship, and done, in the end?
Don’t forget to add in all the pain, time, and adventure time value into the equation.
From my shoes, it could have been competed long ago.
Proverbial in fan?
“It Looks as if Trump Will Be Arrested Next Week, and That’s Not Even the Worst of It”
“More on Possible Trump Indictment: Fox News Reports Final Preparations Being Made to Arrest Trump Next Week… He will “Be Fingerprinted and Processed” ”
“Trump To Be Arrested Next Week?”
It isn’t about “time to completion” for the simple reason that things other than “moving stuff” have been the priority. Just a few examples:
We spent about 4 months in a “Vacation Cottage” (really a ‘trailer without wheels’) in an RV park as we went house hunting. Having a mover “move us” would beg the question of “move us to where?”.
I had about 38 years of “legacy” in both the house, and an existing storage unit in California. A lot of it needed decisions made during the “sell and bug out”. That could not be done if movers were standing around waiting for me to decide what stayed and what goes. (Examples: I decided to not move a gas powered tiller and a large heavy desk. Both good decisions I think… and got to sort through the garage…)
It was not possible, really, to have the house close on time AND do that as a pre-sort pre-sale operation. Still, there’s a fair amount in “storage” that still needs sorting pre-move (3 file cabinets…). So “Stuff it in storage and deal with it later” was the best option. We closed within weeks of the Market Top and the rapid slow down in sales… I think the uplift in price from that paid for the move, BTW.
Pods were going for $16,000 each and I figured it would take 3. So $48,000. That’s a big hill to climb…
The 20 foot box truck I did rent (to clear out one of two storage units – and in the process sort some more) was 4 foot longer than a pod. It was $9000. Taking 8 feet out of the pod length needed (i.e. one 10 foot box truck) would still have been 2 x $9000 + $4000 (as a guess) = $22,000 plus about $1000 per trip of fuel, food, etc. So about $25,000 “all up”.
The ML, despite all the “electrical crap issues”, was valuable as a “Bug Out If Needed” solution at the start. (Remember that a year+ ago there was the potential of California doing another “lock down” and us being trapped there. We had planed an “escape” of buying a trailer and heading out if need be. Airstream, I’m sure, would have known about the LED lights bypass / brake controller needed to sell us a $50,000 trailer ;-) It also did work with the “flat 4” adapter needed to put one station wagon on a UHaul trailer and bring it out (along with a full load in both cars of “stuff that can’t go into storage” – including a full gun safe and the photo archive along with critical papers and such). Frankly, I consider the $10,000 I’m “into it” for the ML worth it just for those 2 “features”. We had an escape vehicle / plan AND we were able to fully move all the “Not Storables” immediately. As a “side bar” it also did just do the “tax run” too…
The FORD was $5500 + 800 of “fix everything” just done. The “shudder” was the torque converter and fixed for $22 of “goo” (“shudder fix”). I’m very happy with it so far. Trailer was about $9000 new (a bit under that actually). I could have gone as low as $5000 for a used POS, but chose to go “up scale” as I have other uses for it. (Buying and moving a ride on mower eventually, for example. Bug Out Box if needed. Overflow Storage if needed. Eventually Stealth Camper setup. Etc.) So I don’t think it fair to attribute the whole cost to “just move me”.
So, all up, I’m “into it” about $26,000 of “capital expenditures”. Gas is about $400 per continent crossing for the ML. FORD TBD. I expect 10 MPG so about 300 gallons of Regular each way. Call it $1000. My labor and driving time is free, and I kind of like driving across the country…
So, In Theory, just doing UHaul All The Way would cost me about the same as I have spent. BUT, in the end I’d be just “out the money”. Straight Expense. This way, I’m still in possession of 3 bits of Capital Stock with almost the same worth I’ve spent for it (though dropping over time).
I LIKE having a FORD Expedition and Box Trailer. The ML has disappointed as a tow vehicle (mostly due to the Hind Brain Corrosion issue – finally solved); but it is currently stocked with the Bug Out Kit and goes 625 miles on a tank of Diesel. I LIKE the idea that should some Aw Shit happen (say, a train derailing dumping vinyl chloride…) we just get in it and go. Already has sleeping bag, cot, camp kitchen, etc. etc.. Eventually I’ll likely sell it and consolidate into the FORD, but “we’ll see”. But for now, having enough gas on board to exit Florida, without a fuel stop, should a hurricane or ‘whatever’ make that important, a bit priceless…
Then, with the FORD, I’m now able to look at buying a Fishing Boat and finally scratch that itch. It has a knob where you can choose any of: 2 wheel drive, All wheel drive, 4 Wheel Drive High, 4 Wheel Drive Low. I didn’t know that was available, and I like it. (My guess is it has electrically lockable transfer case and maybe differentials as well, but I need to look that up some time to know how to properly use it…) that makes it a very interesting back country vehicle… I expect that after “moving stuff” is done, it will become my primary recreational vehicle… AND it can tow a full sized RV trailer should we want to do that…
Note that I’ve not talked about the Storage Cost. Why? Well, I’d have had this stuff in storage anyway… IF it was “pack and go” via a mover, it would have been moved into storage anyway until we bought a house and figured out the furniture. We’re still setting up bookcases and such. It was just a couple of months ago that our (back ordered…) Lazy Boy recliner couch, love seat and recliner showed up… And our beds. So realistically, we are only NOW ready to start unpacking everything.
So, you see, having left stuff “in storage” was mostly driven by the sloth of finding, buying, and major furniture outfitting of our new house.
Then, had we moved it early, I’d still need to get something to move it from local storage to the house…
From my POV, having the truck & trailer are worth what I paid for them just for their future uses. The “move stuff” is a nice benefit, but not the sole supporter of the buy.
The ML paid for itself in the “bug out if needed” feature (before the Hind Brain crapped out) and in the “move non-storables & 1 wagon” job done. I’d rather it had continued to work, but it didn’t. That failure was attributable to my poor inspection of the vehicle and lack of understanding of the hind brain corrosion issue / potential. Had I known enough to open the access panel and inspect it, I’d have gone to the FORD or a Dodge immediately instead. My Bad. So attributing that error on my part to a “move expense” seems a bit wrong. It was just a bad buy decision for what I thought met all needs. Instead it met about 1/2 of them and only for a year.
In short: I’m very happy to have the FORD, the Box Truck, and all the non-storable stuff already here (along with the wagon). I’m not at all bothered that I still have a bunch of stuff in storage, and need to eventually move it or toss it. (Do I really need 2 bicycles? 3 file cabinets to sort out? The old fridge? We’ll see… But the library of books and my garage tools? Oh yeah…) That stuff would be sitting in storage here had we moved it day one. No, I didn’t have time to do that sort as we were on an accelerated closing schedule due to market conditions (and I did time it right to the market top…)
My major complaint? That I didn’t get it done prior to the winter. That schedule slip comes down to 2 things, really. Several months longer to find and buy a home than I’d expected. (Spouse has her requirements…) and the ML Hind Brain / Tow Lights Failure “issues”. Once I’d chosen to buy the ML, that was unavoidable. So, OK, missed that window. Onto the spring window… Frankly, I would attribute some of the $9000 truck rental cost to the ML Failure. I’d expected to be using a box trailer for that. OTOH, the 20 foot box truck let us completely close out one storage unit (at about $180 / month… so about $2000 / year.)
As to the “Adventure” part of it: As much as it was White Knuckling a bit over the $Million Highway; and driving across Texas Yet Again in a storm was not exactly a goal… I’m fond of “adventure” and like a good challenge. So I found it an interesting experience. I’d not go out of my way to do it again, but like jumping out of an airplane (that I did a few times), the adrenaline and feeling of accomplishment are somehow very gratifying…. I’m glad I have them in my life history.
Were I doing it again:
I’d go immediately to a FORD or Dodge product tow vehicle and buy the new trailer immediately in California. That would have been about the same cost for the trailer (however, then they were $10,000 in California and $7000 or less in Florida. It was only a year later it was $9000 in Florida as the inflation monster hit…). Had I done that, I would likely have hit the Fall Window and been done; and for $10,000 less. This was a Near Thing. I had picked out a trailer and did a test drive in a Dodge Durango, Dodge Cummins Pickup, Lincoln Navigator, and Chrysler Aspen (Durango with upscale interior).
Why didn’t I buy one of them? (Something I asked myself a lot…) The Navigator had the Air Springs removed. Stupid, IMHO, as that just makes it an Expedition… The Cummins Pickup had been lifted a few inches and was a PITA to shift the manual transmission. 6 speed and it was unfriendly on finding the right next gear. So spouse could not get into it without me lifting her. And I’ve driven all sorts of manuals – including a hay truck with range splitter. It “wasn’t about me” but that transmission… Then the pickup and the Aspen both rode very rough. Not liking that much. Finally, the Durango was $25,000. In short, I could not find the desired combination of lower cost, better ride, and towing capacity in what was on offer. That made the ML look good… My Bad. Had I found something like the FORD I now have, I’d have bought it. (It rides very nicely…)
So there you have it. But for the Bad Buy of the ML, this would be a flat out “Hell Yes! it was worth it”. As it is, I’m still happy with the end game status (modulo grumping at the ML limited use as towing lights are failed). The King Ranch Expedition is growing on me every time I drive it… the trailer I have is a benefit in several ways “going forward”. The stuff moved already is enough to make for a comfortable home life. The stuff in storage is going to get unpacked at “about the right time” just a couple of months late. All in all, it’s working out OK. I’m also looking forward to “camping across the country in the spring” on the “move the rest” trips.
Until now I’ve mostly been just flying through it all. Did camp one night in Quartzite Arizona one trip, and I’m looking forward to a longer stay with camping in the FORD enabling more stuff and space. So “late” also brings with it a more sedate schedule of driving; and that means more sight-seeing and camping on those future runs. What is that feature worth? Eh?
The War On Trump will continue until one of them wins. Trump gets his 2nd term or they manage to put him in jail. Nothing in this is new or news. Nor is the outcome predictable. It will just slog along.
In either case, one side will “go nuts” in response. That, IMHO, is the goal of the GEBs. More turmoil and trauma. So I chose to not play along by staying calm and just watching the show… trials…
IF they manage a Take Down Of Trump, then it will be up to others to carry the torch. In the mean time, Trump is a good Thorn In Their Side to enjoy. Conservatives / Patriots are not just going to go away with a Trump Lock Up.
If anything, The Stupid Left is making Trump a Martyr. Frankly, as an iconic Martyr “going forward”, I think Trump would accomplish more destruction of the Progressive / Socialist / Left than as a 2nd term POTUS. Once Martyred, Trump never ever “goes away”… his symbolic cruxifiction would last for decades in the minds of The Right.
So, by this persecution, IMHO, The Left is setting up a Win-Win for The Right.
Trump wins and as POTUS undoes Biden Stupidity.
Trump gets locked up and becomes a Martyr For The Ages to the vindictive, corrupt, demonic even, nature of The Left.
Well, I’m “out the door” in a couple of hours. Just enough time for shower, breakfast, and load up. So this is “bye for now”. But I expect to be back on airport wifi while on the way. Once there, no idea, but likely a week or so out of contact on a boat out to sea, see…
RFK says the vaxx was a military product but being marketed as if Big Pharma was running it.
@EM, nicely done maths.
It’s all about perspective in the end.
Those Expeditions do quite well, off road. A small lift and bump in tires looks pretty cool.
More that goes with Russia and Ukraine 1914
FWIW – Ukraine
“SITREP 3/19/23: AND Weekend Mailbag Answers Extravaganza”
FWIW – And a map
“Western Propagandists Have Trouble Reading the Tactical Situation in Bakhmut”
In comments here a while back there was something (IIRC) about a new finding about ice crystals in contrails.
Maybe I can get a prompting on that?
Mistakes were NOT made:
Or the spoken version:
FWIW – worth a fair bit IMO!
“The Eggheads Vs The Doers”
Might stir your interest about here –
“There is a lesson in this. Theory without a reality check can make the world unlivable. This is because theorists can build beautiful models that hide grave errors, intentionally or not, and there is no means by which their mistakes are revealed until you test them against the real world.
You never want them in charge of the whole project.
The Theorists Dictated COVID Policy”
I’m thinking about a 2nd set of steel rims with bigger off road tires on them in 75 aspect ratio…
That front bumper looks nice too. I’ve been thinking of a winch on a tow bar / mount… Then it could go front or rear, or on the rear of the ML too…
Not needing a lift unless it is essential for the tires. It’s already a bit of climb to get in. Might put in air shocks and a kneeling adjustable lift, though…
@John H: Nice one!
I’m on the boat, and caught up on sleep. Still have wifi in harbor. Prices here for locals are kind of crazy high. $4 can of ravioli at the super market. Oddly, fresh meat is about the same as mainland… but anything in a can, box, or jar tends to pricey. Jar of Alfredo sauce that’s about $2.50 at home is $4 to $5 each here. The Dollar Pound Of Pasta was $1.85.
Local bar was $7 / beer. Dinner about $24 to $40. (but this is a beach bar with a view of the harbor…)
Rainy and blustery day, so still in port. Did stock up at the grocery store.
Per Ice / Contrails: Try:
Per Smart Folks & “Models”: I’ve often said that being smart is not a major advantage. The biggest benefit of it being the ability to make up stuff so well you can even fool yourself better than the average person…
one comment also references this contrail related:
Looks like Russia is continuing to tighten the domestic independence:
It is still available for international use (IF the west allows it…) but interbank transfers inside Russia to all go on their system.
Also, Russia has the Mir card (while China has their own card -Union Pay – and bans use of Visa / MC.) Some banks no issuing cards that work on both their systems. IF there were a bank outside Russia that issued such a card, I’d likely get one.
So, effectively, the “sanctions” have just put Visa & M.C. out of business in most of Asia and expanded business for Russian card processing and Chinese.
I expect both to grow rapidly in any country that thinks EU / USA sanctions might be applied to them, too.
Heck, I’d like to have one just as backup for travel to other countries in South America.
Looks like Indonesia is bailing on US payment systems too:
It is a very bad idea to screw around with people’s money or their kids. The Leftists have chosen to do both.
ANY country that is not firmly in the pocket of the EU / USA now has a big incentive to NOT use Swift, Visa or Master Card. (And probably, eventually, Discover & American Express too).
Not only are these ill thought out “sanctions” breaking the European economy, but they are alienating “The West” from the rest of the world and financially isolating “The West”.
All Russia or China needs to do is show they are a more reliable partner than the schitzo USA / EU. And that is not very hard at this point.
Poking the Bear.
According to Telegram, as reported by news.sky.com
This has become a routine/habit recently. A B-52 or two heading for Moscow or St. Petersburg, until intercepted or within cruise missile launching range (what is that?).
Not to mention US drones flying in or close to a war zone.
When WW3 starts, the US govt line will be “But Russia started it!”. Oh, OK then.
And the other aspect is some globalist court accusing Putin of war crimes.
Note that the US officials are themselves fearful of this court.
“Oh, and another group says it’s managed to eliminate the cloud computing cost, releasing more code on Github that can run on a Raspberry Pi, and complete the training process within five hours on a single high-end nVidia RTX 4090 graphics card.”
Have to share
In the London Zoo, a guy is drinking a beer and looking at the display. Suddenly a girl falls into the pool with crocodiles. The young man throws a can and jumps for the girl. He pulls her out and hands her to her crying mother. Congratulations young man, that’s acting like a true British gentleman!!! The young man answers: No, I’m Russian!
The next day in all the British media: Drunk Russian stole a meal from crocodiles!!!!
A very different story from the Ukrainian side of things on Twitter: Russian materiel losses appear catastrophic and replacement mobilized infantry is of extremely low quality with terrible loss rates compared to Ukrainians.
Russians are now pulling 60-70 year old T54/55’s out of storage and certainly a lot of 50-60 year old T64s in the field. https://notes.citeam.org/t-54?s=1
Russia’s theoretically large reserves of cold war war weapons have, in the main, been very poorly stored – eg outdoors or in leaking warehouses with hatches open, and are mostly rusted and otherwise deteriorated beyond easy repair – which is why they are resorting to fielding antiques and hacking together weird chimeras of obsolete weapons systems to try and meet equipment shortfalls. Large stores of past-use-by antique shells are unreliable and hell on barrels.
Ukraine govt reports that they are taking out 50-100 each of tanks, APCs and artillery systems a week and somewhere around 5000 Russian combatants. These figures don’t include inevitable losses to other mechanical and accident failures away from the lines that are typically high as well. Rates of fire from Russian artillery are down to about a third of what they once were. And there are endless intercepted reports from front line russians complaining they have no artillery. Crazy unsupported kamikaze meat-wave infantry assaults against heavily armed Ukrainians tends to back that up.
Russians have used up almost all precision missile reserves and can now only launch whatever they produce or purchase from Iran each month.
Russians are losing a years worth of tank production each month. They are depleted to the point where they only have poorly equipped infantry (though potentially a lot of that).
Russians major winter/spring offensive efforts with huge loss of troops and weapons systems over last few months have yielded tiny territory gain ( a few 100 square km). Their few attempts at major armoured column assaults (eg vuledar) with poorly trained personnel have been wiped out in very short order. They have no chance of taking significant territory anymore without nukes or a lot of Chinese help that probably won’t be forthcoming. Maybe they can hold on dug-in in defense against increasingly superior armed but numerically inferior Ukrainians, but seems to me that Russians are more likely to lose territory from this point on. Even their all-out high casualty effort to take Bahkmut hasn’t been able to score a win.
Russian WW2 approach of overcoming materiel deficits with more bodies just doesn’t work in this age where western high tech weapon systems have vastly higher force-magnifying effects. But perhaps the re-growth of foliage cover will help save Russians from being as easily picked off by the Ukrainians as they have been over winter.
Ukrainians will almost inevitably get access to longer range weapons to take out supply lines into Crimea (I’m amazed Kerch bridge has lasted so long) and have been developing them themselves. They have hit a few targets in Crimea recently beyond the range of western supplied systems. Longer ranged precision strike will likely enable a summer assault down to the sea of Azov to cut-off and retake southern Ukraine, and perhaps Crimea, but I would guess they will not be able to achieve much in the East.
Popular ‘Libs of Tik Tok’ founder receives death wish after children’s book release
By: BRAVE Books Staff
When Chaya Raichik started Libs of Tik Tok, she had no idea that her account would become so popular. But with over 1.5 million followers and counting, it’s safe to say that Raichik has opened a door that’s exposing far-left activists all over the world and they’re trying to shut the door in her face permanently.
Raichik is expanding her brand with the release of her first children’s book titled, No More Secrets: The Candy Cavern. This is part of her next step in exposing child predators, but also a much-needed step in helping families of all beliefs open up communication with their children. It appears followers such as @MasontheCourier would rather wish death upon Raichik than teach children about trusting their parents as the main authority figures in their lives (as depicted in the below screenshot on Raichik’s personal account).
Lord, make this so: https://townhall.com/columnists/dmitry-radyshevsky/2023/03/22/to-defeat-kgb-drop-lgb-n2620949.
“The not-so-sustainable EV’s that have to be written off after a scratch”
A different level of sustainability –
“A World War I relic sees action again in Ukraine”
“How the USSR’s Fall Unleashed a Neocon Goldrush to the Heartland”
“The Gathering Storm
America’s self-inflicted trouble in Ukraine aggravates our dangerous trouble at home.”
And one could say that those “best laid plans of men and mice” seem to be ganging up on their planners all at once
“The Gathering Storm
America’s self-inflicted trouble in Ukraine aggravates our dangerous trouble at home.”
And one could say that those “best laid plans of men and mice” seem to be “ganging” up on their planners all at once
The official Ukrainian reports and their Fan Boys have been over the top liars for so long that nothing they say has value or traction. By their counts, Russia is out of everything and dying at such a prodigious rate they can’t field an army. Yet Russia just keeps on taking towns and blowing up Ukrainian Infrastructure.
I just no long believe them. Their numbers never add up. Their “stories” often get blown up when someone finds the same photos from years prior (children waving Dad goodbye, downed airplane, and so many more).
Yet when Russian Military claims of Russian deaths are matched against local obituaries and similar data, they cross check and line up.
And military folks who are outsiders (i.e. not Ukrainian nor Russian advocates) look at the available data, they find Russia running a “conservation of force” campaign that minimizes losses and Ukraine doing very stupid things that gives them high losses (like attacking well defended sites with small units).
While I appreciate your bringing an alternative POV on the numbers (since it is always good to look at different POVs); I do think some considerable pounds of salt need to be applied…
eBooks Censored AFTER You’ve Bought Them is Latest Trick by Leftists
Amazon are now censoring the ebooks that customers have already bought, often without their knowledge or consent.
The new censored versions of books by Roald Dahl were uploaded to customers devices overnight, without any notification, with customers now unable to see the original versions of the much loved classics they thought they’d bought.
Customers with Kindle devices may be under the impression that the books bought and paid for became their property, but this has proven not to be the case. Amazon can go into any device and delete, edit or change any book of their choosing, even if the customer purchased it years ago and it’s on their own device.
FWIW for the “Foyle-view” – or not
More than a tinfoil hat needed by the look of this
“Why Hypersonic Weapons Change Everything”
Be interesting to hear Barnes Wallis’s comment on that first demonstration –
I tripped over this serious miss-information while looking for that on Grand Slam –
Sir Barnes Wallis Grand Slam was an atomic bomb used in World War II. It was first used against the Bielefeld Viaduct on 14th March 1945, where 3,000 tons of bombs (including Tallboys) had already been dropped on it with little result. Grand Slam also caused remarkable destruction wherever it was used – the Arnsberg, Arbergen, Neinburg and other bridges were also to be felled by the bomb due to modifications made to the B.1 Specials which included the removal of gun turrets allowing the aircraft to carry Grand Slam up to an acceptable drop height.0
Powered by Brave AI”
I think Brave might need a big reamer through what ever it is doing with “Brave AI”
Search item was “Barnes Wallis” using Brave
Meanwhile, a Carrington-like event on the sun hardly gets a mention.
Russians hypersonic Kinzhal is just 1970’s ICBM MIRV glider tech without the nuke. Big issue it has is guidance in-atmosphere, at 3-4km/s forward facing surfaces are covered in white hot plasma meaning radar and optics don’t work, and I given latency and marginal reception through plasma I doubt RTK GPS works either meaning you are reliant upon inertial guidance with low accuracy probably >100m CEP.
And you still get 10-20s of in-atmosphere flight time where radar can lock on and launch intercepting missiles. If they explode a field of shrapnel in the missiles path 1-2km from the target it is toast for other than solid metal warheads. But you can only protect high value targets and only with their own missile defence systems. A Patriot battery can probably at best protect a 10km diameter area.
EM; regarding veracity of info sources. Obviously a hell of a lot of spin from both sides, and I guess we’ll truly only see in a few months. I think at this point it is fair to say the winter Russian offensive was a bust and their ability to go on offensive appears to be getting more and more depleted. I think the old Russian war doctrine of quantity has failed to take account of how impactful the quality of troops and weapons systems has become – they lost their best in the first few months of the war and have been beaten back severely since.
I’ve listened to a few Douglas MacGregor talks and like the Kremlinologists of old I think he gives far too much credence to Russian competence, reserves, training and logistical capabilities, materiel production capacity and ‘successes’. Russia’s military is all bluster covering up for a withered Potemkin facade, similar to 1980’s USSR, drained by a generation of corruption pervasive incompetence and now totally reliant on useless unmotivated conscript servicemen desperate to get away from the war. You can’t really argue with the documentary evidence that they are pushing antique weapons into the field due to desperation and lack of production capacity.
1950’s weapons are just not able to make any headway against 21st century weapons without huge numerical superiority. Ukrainian artillery can accurately pick off Russians from out of range of low accuracy Russian artillery and Russian claims of being able to field sufficient materiel are no longer credible – just look at videos of trains coming to front, and they are already reliant upon Iran, North Korea and China supplied ammunition to make up for shortfalls. They’ve just claimed they could field 1500 more tanks this year after losing 3500 last year, but historically have never managed to build even 200/year in last few decades, and will struggle mightily to make 1000+ corroded wrecks in storage fit for the field.
Russians are claiming 5-10:1 Ukrainian to Russian losses, Ukrainians ~3:1 Russian to Ukrainian, and Nato+US closer to 1:1 over first 12 months. But Ukrainians were on offensive for much of first 12 months, and that always costs more – Russians have been on offensive for last 3 months and it is clear their losses have skyrocketed compared to Ukraine during that period. It is likely it has been 3:1 or worse in troops for Russians in 2023, and far worse in heavy weapons as they are picked off by better western weapons.
Add to the mix Ukrainians getting increasingly capable heavy drones into the field; the videos of them picking off Russian troops and heavy equip day and night are relentless and horrifying – on twitter you can daily see turkey-shoots of many 10’s of Russians being taken out in dug-in positions by drone dropped bombs or with distant artillery using close in drone spotting. Obviously only a small fraction of what is going on all over Ukraine. Russians really appear to have no defense, and ukraine is buying up huge stocks of drone parts and innovating their designs with western help and technology to boost that capability. Russia has also started to fortify their major cities against the longer range Ukrainian weapons they know are nearly ready to be fielded and are warning Crimeans to get ready to bug out.
Re that “Nut-Zero”
“Wind fantasy land: to cover 8 days of half-speed wind, UK needs 1,000 times the “biggest battery” on Earth”
Check the first graph for UK and Europe of one year’s actual data –
(Brown line is “installed nameplate generation capacity”)
Might also be labelled “It does not compute”
Foyle says: 24 March 2023 at 5:52 am
How about some eye witness accounts instead of proaganda?
This article in the Daily Mail, taken from the Kyiv Independent has the following quotes.
The solider from the 93rd Mechanized Brigade said Russian artillery pinned him and his unit down as they fought to defend Russian units from getting into the city.
‘(The Russians) keep firing at us, but we don’t have artillery – so we have nothing to attack them back with,’ Volodymyr told the Ukrainian publication. ‘I don’t know if I will return or not. We are just getting killed.’
“One Ukrainian soldier, Vladyslav, said Russia’s attack groups would usually be made up of five soldiers, but that they seemed ‘scared’ to attack at close range.
Instead, they would use mass fire to destroy defensive positions, such as houses, so that Ukrainian soldiers had nowhere to hide, forcing them to give up the position.
Ukraine’s soldiers have said it seems as if Russia has ‘infinite’ stocks of munitions and manpower, against Ukraine’s machine guns and rifles.”
As has been said in the past, the first casualty of war is the truth.
I’m inclined to agree with Foyle. To claim that the defensive side of a trench battle is taking 10:1 losses goes against al experience. They are dug in. The offensive side has to advance in the open into fire. 10:1 just isn’t on. Parity is doubtful.
Russia is trying to fight using WW1 tactics. I don’t know how that is supposed to work without WW1 troop densities. Even half a million men are stretched pretty thin across a battlefield of this size. Look up the troop densities in this exact area during WW2. The same applies to numbers of tanks and guns. And Foyle is right, although a 1950’s tank can still kill you, it has no chance against a modern one. Not actually because of guns and armour but because of the sensors and communication abilities of the modern tank. In the open he can see you and kill you or send your position to the tactical map display in his accompanying tanks or guns before your gun has a decent chance of a hit. And the first hit usually wins in a tank fight.
“Twitter removing freebie ‘Blue Tick Verified’ for the very important people, like ABC personalities.”
Fine detail – notice that Musk’s use of the “two fingered salute” there
(Fingers reversed from Churchill’s “V” sign and better known to you done with one finger)
@Rhoda Klapp – I haven’t been buying any body counts, kill ratios, troop and equipment numbers, etc. from either side. It’s all propaganda.
You can’t tell the home team that you’re losing badly. If it’s apparent you are taking heavy losses, you say that it’s even worse for the enemy. You just can’t put out anything accurate because troop and equipment levels have to be kept from the enemy. And of course, all the soldiers on both sides are fighting bravely. What else would either side put out there; we’re getting our @$$es kicked? Oh, and the other side is the one committing all of the atrocities.
So, the only info I find to be fairly reliable are the maps of Russian held territory in Ukraine. And from those, I see that the Russian positions have been changing very slowly.
The explanations are that the Russians have set a meat grinder trap and the Ukraine army has taken the bait. Or, the Russians are bumbling boobs that can’t get the job done, but they are having some success at enormous cost. It’s possible that both explanations are right.
I read with interest what the armchair generals have to say, but I figure that most of what they say is wrong, but we don’t know which parts are wrong. The world won’t know anything for sure until the bullets stop flying and people sit down to work out how it all ends.
You raise a good point, Rhoda, and I feed those bits and bobs of observations like that into the hopper when they are pointed out.
The US reporting of the Vietnam ‘police action’ was an interesting case study in propaganda. The military-industrial complex wanted the war to go on. They put out daily enemy loss figures that after a while, showed we had killed every North Vietnamese two or three times over. “We are winning. Let’s keep going.”
The anti-war faction put out accurate daily US casualty lists, with names, so people would see their friends’ and relatives’ names and just give up. What a way to fight a war, eh? A war overseas and a propaganda war at home.
Let’s hope that they don’t just start arresting anyone whose phone shows them somewhere in the area. Actually, let’s hope that they just decide not to arrest anyone more. The J6 prisoners might as well be in North Korea.
“ Russians are now pulling 60-70 year old T54/55’s out of storage”
Pure propaganda. Not happening.
Pfizer press announcement about purported vaxx side effects:
The much publicised “Ukraine Spring Offensive Any Time Soon” has been put on hold.
President Volodymyr Zelensky has said Ukraine’s counter-offensive against Russia cannot start until Western allies send more military support. He told a Japanese newspaper he would not send his troops to the frontlines without more tanks, artillery and Himars rocket launchers. In an interview with Yomiuri Shimbun, he said the situation in eastern Ukraine was “not good”. “We are waiting for ammunition to arrive from our partners,” he said. And when asked about the expected counter-offensive, he said: “We can’t start yet, we can’t send our brave soldiers to the front line without tanks, artillery and long-range rockets.”
Another obscure Russian effort –
“Turns out that the scientific paper that set out the theory of stealth was written by a Russian scientist and published in a Moscow science journal. The paper was so dense and obtuse, though, that nobody recognized what he was saying except an engineer at the Skunk Works, who then convinced the management there to pursue it. The rest is history.” ”
Well, I’ve crossed the Bahama Basin from one side to the other. Tired, dirty, and a bit of grinning too ;-)
At least 2.5 days of no internet at all. (Just finished anchor out and dinner and got internet at almost 9 PM today…) so very much “out of touch” on latest events.
There’s several grievous errors of assumption that a lot of folks make, especially the Ukraine Fan Boys. These lead to all sorts of wrong speculation and confused thinking. I’ve laid them out before, but they bear repeating:
1) Russia is NOT trying (so far…) to capture a lot of dirt. To assert failure to capture dirt is evidence of Russia losing or failing is just wrong..
2) Russia has a stated goal (by several of high rank) to “Grind down the Ukrainian military”. That is what they ARE doing. Mr. Z. is helping them by continuously sending his troops into kill zones.
3) Russians are not fighting man to man effectively so are losing. Nope. Russia is using a HUGE amount of artillery to reduce Ukrainian positions to rubble and kill as many as possible. Only THEN to they send in infantry to take care of whatever is left alive. You certainly can get 10:1 kill ratios when one side is using artillery and the other is sitting in bunkers or foxholes.
4) Russia is using massed human wave attacks and dropping like flies. Nope. The vast majority of Russian forces have not even been put into action. They are sitting in Belarus and Russia on the border with Ukraine.
5) Related: Russia is sending old tanks to the front and they get blown up!!! Nope. Russian tanks are largely sitting with the troops in Belarus and Russia on the border.
6) Russia already lost their best troops. Again, Nope. They were not even sent into the battle zone. A VERY SMALL expeditionary force was sent in initially to capture the Donbas, and largely met their goals, then hunkered down and built heavy defensive lines that have not been breached. BTW, most of the heavy fighting has been by Wagner Group of mercenaries, not Russian Regular Army. So how can they have been killed if they are not doing the heavy fighting, eh?
Related Note: Note that Russian Paratroops who were holding Kehrson City evacuated in good order when it was decided to give them R&R in preparation for use later AS paratroops. By Definition, a unit that has evacuated to the rear in good order and strength was not destroyed in battle.
7) Hypersonic missiles don’t work. That one is near laughable. They have already worked. What they are fired at gets hit. Note that a GPS radio in the rear of the missile is not blinded… and has a clear view of the sky. That’s where we put our GPS guidance systems… Also note that the big problem with hypersonic missiles is that when traveling at mach 10, you can not change course much at all without breaking up. What this means is that they don’t work well on mobile things with erratic courses; but once fired at a stationary (or nearly so) target, they will hit it as they just go straight at it. The Space Shuttle was hypersonic and still landed on the runway, fully automated.
Here’s what is far closer to truth:
What is a huge difference in this war is the near Total Battlefield Awareness. By both sides. Any troop concentration or armor concentration becomes an instant target. Russia did get some whacks in the early part of the war due to that. Then they adapted.
What they did, was make it a Large Artillery & Missile War. Not much armor, not a lot of massed troops. But a huge artillery volume and lots of longer range cruise missiles, drones, etc. This, then, rapidly ran Ukraine out of ammunition. (Thus Mr. Z. recently cancelling their planned attack and pleading for a lot more guns & ammo and artillery pieces).
So the Russians have been doing creeping artillery, pulverizing an area with volume, then send in mostly Wagner Group to finish the job. Ukraine has been sending up lots and lots of “reinforcements” who can do nothing but get blown up as they sit under artillery that they can not attack. Thus the high kill ratio in Russia’s favor.
Russia has also been slowly destroying the Ukrainian Air Defenses. Send in a flight of missiles & drones (some of them decoys) and when air defense lights up, hit it. Ukraine is running out of air defense missiles and systems. Russia has started limited use of airplanes and gravity bombs in areas that are now suited to it. Bombs against infantry also give high kill ratios.
and so it goes.
@Another Ian: Per batteries…
There’s a very good evaluation of the problem by an electrical engineer kicking about on the internet, per California, but it holds for anywhere with a seasonal high and low. I’ve posted a pointer to it before, but being “at sea” right now can’t do so ATM.
The bottom line is that it can’t work due to the swing between Summer & Winter. You must have a battery to cover that swing that has one charge / discharge cycle per year. Aside from “internal losses” or “self discharge” killing that right out the gate (those could be overcome with things like Aluminum Air batteries that are really stored fuel cells). The real problem is that your $Billion battery has to amortize that cost over 1 unit stored electricity per year. Just no can do. You end up with extremely expensive electricity.
That’s the proof of concept. After that you end up in arguments of coping. Fuel backup generators, how much seasonal swing can be offloaded, etc.
What you are saying would be true if it were infantry on infantry. It isn’t.
It is dug in infantry vs artillery & precision guided missiles…
Russia is not sending infantry & armor at entrenched positions. It is bombarding them into rubble then sending in a clean up crew…
I don’t believe either side’s claims. I look for non-political evidence. Clear evidence of Ukraine hauling folks off the street, young and old, and sent to the army. Video from an unrelated “live podcast” walking Russian Streets showing normal life and folks not suffering. When even Ukraine admits a town has changed sides.
Then the negative space: Photos claimed to be one thing, then found on the internet from a time of peace. Ukraine has done a lot of that… The claims that Russia is running out of ammo, yet reports of daily massive shelling. Ukraine claiming they are winning Just Fine and have captured hundreds of Russian Tanks (having started with 1000 or so) but also claiming they just MUST have massive resupply.
Anything official on troop loses or deployments is likely bogus.
Anything from the MSM IS bogus.
Stupid is as stupid does. Arrest 1000 even LESS involved than the existing political prisoners will just make it more obvious it is bogus trumped up charges.
Any “offensive” from both sides was crimped by a very short freeze in winter, and now a very muddy season. Then the Total Battlefield Awareness makes use of armor by either side problematic until they take out the other side’s missiles & artillery (which Ukraine can not do…)
I’m suspecting both sides can only do incremental advance with massive artillery (at least until one of them runs out, then it will be game over).
Good one! (Plop!)
Since I was told 30 years ago that global warming would drown all the islands of the world; I’m happy to report having anchored at several Bahama Cays that having clear wave cuts that have not moved in decades. Oh, and some are only about 5 feet high, then plants on top; so it would not take much to drown them.
Plus, our depth charts for the Bahama Basin have been very accurate. This, despite a lot of it being 3 to 10 feet deep and the deep parts being 15 to 20 feet. An old coral growth from when the ocean was higher, it has been eroded during the glacial period when water was 400 feet lower; then reflooded when the ice melted.
I’m thinking I’ll do a page about it when back on shore. It is 2 MILES deep of accumulation from a LOT of repeated “Flood, growth, exposed, sink, flood, growth” cycles… There’s a fair number of old buildings and harbors that are still at water level after decades…
“Dr. Sabine Hazan: The Gut Bacteria That’s Missing in People Who Get Severe COVID
Dr. Sabine Hazan is a gastroenterologist and CEO of Progenabiome. She is an expert on gut bacteria. When she started studying the microbiomes of COVID-19 patients, she quickly noticed a pattern.
“The people that had severe COVID lacked a certain bacteria called bifidobacteria,” she says.
In this episode, she breaks down how a healthy gut impacts people’s outcomes from COVID-19, and what steps people can take to improve their gut health and overall immunity.
With the knowledge Hazan gained from studying the microbiomes of COVID-19 patients, she developed and patented treatment protocols combining vitamins and drugs that increase bifidobacteria including vitamin C, vitamin D, hydroxychloroquine, and ivermectin.
This follows on from my 2-part post weeks ago that wasn’t.”
“Mechanical gears in jumping insects”