18 July 2013

Thoughts On Thursday...
To begin with, it's going to be ANOTHER "scorcher" in the Heartland.
I kicked the A/C on around 0630, and I'm going to let it run until bedtime.
The humidity is the big deal outside, especially when exerting oneself.
Temps today will be in the low-mid-90s, with a heat index of around 102 degrees.
A heat advisory was issued for our area into tomorrow, when we're expected to see temps drop a bit, along with the humidity.
Sure sounds like a day to visit a mall, or stay inside where it's comfy, hmm?
I keep singing to myself that old Nat King Cole song: "Those Lazy, Hazy Crazy Days of Summer".
Not to step on CWM's songful toes here, but this ditty was on a 1963 album of the same name, arranged and conducted by Ralph Carmichael...yes, THAT Ralph Carmichael of Christian music note. Pretty neat, huh?
Anyway, let's get rolling, and see what's happening in the local sweat -box, shall we?
*** First out the door today, is the answer to yesterday's WHO SAID THAT? quote:
"He only employs his passion who can make no use of his reason."
This is attributed to that great Roman orator, MARCUS TULLIUS CICERO, and here is his WIKI:
It is said that Petrarch's discovery of Cicero's letters is credited for initiating the 14th century Renaissance.
Cicero was an accomplished orator AND lawyer (a wise man...a lawyer. Now there's something you don't see any of TODAY...lol)
It was Julius Caesar that wanted Cicero to be the 4th member of his existing partnership with Pompey and Crassus, which would eventually evolve into the First Triumvirate. Cicero declined saying he suspected it would undermine the Republic.
Cicero had a very interesting political life, having been exiled and then becoming Mark Antony's cohort after the death of Caesar.
Eventually, Cicero was charged and convicted under dubious laws from times past, and when soldiers came to claim him, he was reported to have spoken these last words:
"There is nothing proper about what you are doing, soldier, but do try to kill me properly."
He was beheaded and his hands were also cut off, and upon Antony's instructions, all three parts of Cicero were nailed to the Rostra in the Forum Romanum. Antony's wife, took the head, pulled out the tongue and jabbed it repeatedly with her hairpin.
(Those Romans sure knew how to pass the time of day, didn't they?)
Fortunately, Cicero's legacy lived LONG after him, and is credited with transforming Latin from a modest utilitarian language into a versatile literary medium capable of expressing abstract and complicated thoughts and clarity.
And we ALL know that Latin is the basis for MANY of OUR words today, whatever other country may have derived them from Latin to begin with.
The WIKI is a good read, and shows you that political "intrigue" had much of it's roots in Rome.
Moving on...
*** It's bad enough we're seeing these "smart meters" for electricity being put on houses across the nation, but here in Fort Wayne, there's a bit of a "different slant" on this...as if we NEED it.
Here's the story link:
Indiana Michigan Power, the local utility "capo", has a program that can SAVE YOU MONEY.
(and if you believe that, I've a bridge for sale in Manhattan...REAL cheap)
The "Residential Peak Reduction Program" is what this is being called.
Here's the link to their website:
A "device" is attached to your home A/C unit (okay, that ALREADY creeps me the hell out), and then "officials" (again, creeped out) send a SIGNAL that reduces the cycling OF your A/C unit, to about 50% of normal.
Sounds great, doesn't it?
Someone ELSE tells YOU what you can use and pay for, when YOU bought the damn unit and hooked it up to YOUR house.
Does the term "Big Brother" seems to apply here?
Apparently, 5000 Hoosiers have bought into this plan (note - we are NOT among them).
One customer, having signed up for this plan, states: "We were very upset to find out they were ACTUALLY shutting the air-conditioning unit DOWN, instead of slowing it down."
Yeah, that's what happens when you give CONTROL of YOUR stuff to someone else...THEY got you by the short hairs.
And to think ALL of this nets you a humongous $8 CREDIT each month...
Eight bucks can't even buy FOUR bucks these days, so who the hell are these people kidding, anyway?
I say better to take the "hit" with higher utility bills during summer A/C use, and be comfortable, rather than be uncomfortable at the hands of some "device" and the people sending signals to it.
In other words, they can keep their dickbeaters OFF of my air-conditioner.
*** The FWPD recently added license plate "readers" in a few patrol cruisers, and the technology is pretty neat.
But, there "could" be a DOWN side to all this really cool tech.
Here's the story link:
And believe it or else...the ACLU is weighing in on this.
They say it violates privacy acts already in place, and that you cant track PEOPLE by tracking their cars.
No, but you CAN find scofflaws with parking control as well as outstanding tickets.
Agencies using the readers state they don't keep records of scanned vehicles MORE than 30 days, but what we're told is often a bit different from what is FACT...and we, the people have NO way of watch-dogging such things at this time.
It's just their word against ours at this point.
Man, it sure would be nice to have the "revolving plate" that James Bond had on his Aston Martin in Goldfinger...wouldn't it?
*** Lastly today, we see more evidence of less privacy in our lives, supposedly designed to make us all feel MORE safe.
I dunno, I'm not feeling one damn bit safer here is Fort Wayne.
Many of these "monitoring" devices watch ALL of us, rather than the criminal element alone, and there's the rub...
HOW can you have one without the other?
We either have to keep track of everyone or no on at all.
Unfortunately, the "rest of us" fall into the mix, with no choice of our own.
It's almost like we are being "smart-metered" whether we like it or not.
They already have "black boxes" in vehicles for crash assessments, tracking devices in new cars like LO-JACK, and now it's moved from our vehicles to our homes, with the smart meters and A/C usage reduction "plan".
So I have to ask "Where ARE our liberties going these days?"
And why don't any of us feel SO much safer as a result of all this monitoring?
It's all the doings of our overblown and out-of-control government, and the last time I checked, they were there to protect our NATION...
The federal government was never designed to take care of individuals.
It's much like ANY police department...they serve and protect the COMMUNITY as a whole, and NOT protect each of us individually.
We used to look after ourselves just fine, and many times look out for one another just as well.
When are we planning to revisit THAT street, and will the government even allow such a novelty these days?
I wish we could have concrete answers to THOSE questions...don't you?
Be well, make a difference to someone, and...
Stay SAFE out there, America.


CWMartin said...

I love Nat, but it's too damn hot an humid to be crazy. I'd suggest Summer In The City, but it's not really a "different world" at night either. Maybe the Crazy World Of Arthur Brown would be more appropriate.

Bob G. said...

I dunno...down here, crazy is standard operating procedure for the locals...in ANY weather...LOL.

Summer in the City rings true.
(dirty and gritty)

Arthur Brown...My God, I thought I was the only one that remembered him.
("I am the god of hellfire...and I bring you...FIRE")

Thanks for swinging over here today & commenting.

Stay safe (and do keep cool) up there.

John DuMond said...

"...a wise man...a lawyer. Now there's something you don;t see any of TODAY..."

As someone who works with lawyers on a regular basis, I second that sentiment. :)

Wrexie said...

vestis virum reddit... but wear shorts in this heat! The Romans were a curious lot, for sure.

My A/C is getting replaced soon...and with controls I can control. Crazy stuff out there..

Bob G. said...

John D.:
Somehow, I thought you'd feel that way...LMAO!

Once in a GREAT while, a good one surfaces, but not often enough to instill faith on me when it comes to what the majority represents.

Thanks for rolling up today and commenting.

Stay safe & keep cool out there.

Bob G. said...

We could learn a LOT from ancient Rome...mainly because I've said for DECADES that we're trying to follow their "example", and not in a GOOD way.

When I taught Sunday School, I used examples of how America and Rome were becoming more alike.

Bread and Circuses anyone?

--Yeah, with your A/C (and anything else YOU own & operate) it's always better to be able to control it YOURSELF.
And the only thing better than THAT is practicing personal SELF-CONTROL where applicable.

Thanks for stopping by today and commenting.

You stay safe (and hail-free) out there.

gadfly said...

Very good column today, my man. You hit on all the hotspots around here where strangers want to intrude on our privacy. It seems that government at all levels wants to install data collection devices in order to grab our asses later.

Big Data is here to stay unless we get some changes in our laws, starting with the snatch and grab information gatherers on the internet. We are witnessing the newest job title created for today's environment - Data Miner.

I was also intrigued by you habit of turning off air conditioning at night - which has got to raise a sweat of late when the low night temperature is above 70 and humidity holds between 60 and 85. When I lived in the south, the natives told me that I should never turn off the a/c - turn it down but never off - because the compressor has to consume too much electricity to raise the temp back to cool after a long time of being off. I guess I don't know which way is correct but we all are influenced by family, friends and acquaintances.

Bob G. said...

We're ALL under someone's "microscope" these days...

And that should make us wonder WHY we're all a lot "better behaved", because we're on CANDID CAMERA.

-- Having worked w/ HVAC in the past, The HOTTER it is OUTSIDE, the more efficient a unit will run - we are talking the condenser parts found outside a house or on a roof.

When that condenser is exposed to cooler temps (at night) it's like running a FAN...little if ANY heat-exchange goes on.
The compressor will only
heat the freon inside and send it to the condenser, which when it makes it to the evaporator (from the condenser) is cool once again and removes heat from the structure.

If it is THAT humid, using the A/C can work okay, but a dehumidifier is much better, cost-wise.
(plus, you get some "free" water out of the deal...for LEMONADE...LOL.)

Thanks for your comment...much appreciated.
Glad you could stop by today.

Stay safe out there.