30 January 2014

Some Thoughts For Thursday...
We're starting to get used to having temperatures BACK on the positive side of the thermometers, aren't we?
It's actually TEN DEGREES (F) outside now...a far cry from those negative double digit lows.
The high today in the Hoosierland will reach a "toasty" (?) TWENTY-EIGHT degrees.
There is a chance of light snow after 1700 hrs after increasing clouds.
Winds will be out of the South at around 15-20 MPH, so we still got us a wind chill (as low as -5 degrees).
So, fill up that cup of piping hot coffee, tea, or cocoa, and let's get busy with the rest of the day...
*** First out of the frozen lake today is the answer to yesterday's WHO SAID THAT? quote:
"It is easier to build strong children, than to repair broken men."
This is attributed to that great advocate of human rights, Frederick Douglass ( Feb 1818 - 20 Feb 1895)
And here is his WIKI:
You want to talk about one of the best examples of a "self-made" person...here he is.
To overcome the adversity into which he was born, and achieve a status that granted him access to the White House during a time of this nation's greatest conflict deserves mention as well as praise.
While his story is well worth the time you would spend reading about it, let's hit some notable aspects.
He was born into slavery, taken from his mother as an infant, and raised by his maternal grandmother, who taught him the alphabet at age 12, although it was illegal at that time to teach slaves to read.
Douglass learned to read by himself while watching neighborhood white children, and from observing the writings of men with whom he worked.
During this time of self-learning, he stated that "Knowledge is the pathway from slavery to freedom."
(funny, that STILL applies today...society has just substituted one form of slavery for another)
It was in September of 1837 that Douglass escaped slavery by boarding a train bound for Havre de Grace, MD.
Dressed as a sailor from a uniform made for him by a free black woman he had fallen in love with, and with papers given him by a free black seaman, he made his way to Wilmington, DE, and from there by steamboat to the "Quaker City" (Philadelphia), and continuing to the safe house in NYC run by abolitionist David Ruggles..
This entire trip took 24 hours.
From there on, it was about abolition of slavery, women's rights and the equality of ALL men.
You can read it all, and I guarantee you will come away with a wonder of what such a man could accomplish under such conditions.
To his dying day, Douglass firmly believed that "EDUCATION was the KEY for African-Americans to IMPROVE their lives"
And THAT also rings as true TODAY, as it did over 150 years ago.
A truly remarkable individual.
Moving on...
*** What is up with this national PROPANE shortage, anyway?
I've been following a slew of stories saying how people have had to leave their homes because of short supplies, or stay and turn their heating WAY back to conserve the propane. This is supposed to be AMERICA - the land of plenty, right?
What I did find out was that a major supply pipeline is undergoing MAINTENANCE...
Okay, so WHO had this bright idea to close down a major pipeline for a heating source...DURING THE WINTER???
Yepper...another "WTF???" moment!
This kind of crap is very disturbing. After all, when does more propane get used?
(the winter)
Some may argue that summer is important because of cookout grills...or forklifts, or even alternative fuel vehicles...
Are ANY of those MORE important that keeping people WARM and alive during one of the coldest Januarys in DECADES??
C'mon now...let's get REAL here.
To me, this is intolerable...and we don't even USE propane.
The price alone has DOUBLED in a month.
Wonder what would occur fs the same thing happened to our NATURAL GAS supply?
(and don't think it couldn't)
These companies need to use something called a BRAIN...and better determine WHAT time of year would be best for NOT doing routine maintenance.
People depend on propane for heating...they can always go back to charcoal for cookouts, and who cooks out in sub-zero weather anyway?
*** Next up, it appears that WE at the "Fortress" aren't the ONLY ones suffering from cold weather and "water" issues...
The city of Ft. Wayne is certainly seeing it's share of broken water MAINS across town.
Just this month, we've had 18 main breaks in the city....(and counting)
(but we do have a great downtown)
This is causing traffic detours, vehicles to become literally frozen in place on streets, and certainly inconvenience out the ass with people having their water shut off until repairs can be completed.
(but we do have a great downtown)
According to a story in the J-G, each break costs the city between $2500-$3500 to repair, but with THIS kind of cold, the costs are at the UPPER end of that scale. And you also have to add in the nature of FIREFIGHTING to all of this.
The FWFD knows where the breaks are, and can deploy a tanker should the need arise, but it's critical to get the MAIN fixed.
Besides, the apparatus (hose connections) on those fire engines can freeze, presenting a whole new set of problems.
(gee, I thought we had a director of public safety for all this stuff, because it IS a public safety issue)
And over FIFTY houses have had frozen water METERS, mostly due to the location OF those meters...like in unheated garages
Okay, so who the hell places a water meter anyplace OTHER than inside a house, and when did they start doing this stupid crap?
I've ALWAYS had the water meter INSIDE the house, but that meant the meter-reader would have to have access to the house, and many times, the resident wasn't home, so the reading was a "guesstimate" for the month.
Technology now allows reading from the street (it's that black box on the meter that "talks" to city water meter readers)
Sure makes something simple get awfully complicated.
(but we do have a great downtown...that doesn't have such issues)
*** The Indiana state senate has been REAL busy of late...and have several important bills moving through the state legislature.
-- Here's a story that seeks to VOID the "common core" standards, which was not really opposed by those touting this standardization system:
Dumbing  everyone down - one student at a time.
-- Here's a story about a proposed BAN on municipal gun "buy-back" programs...much like the one they held here in Ft. Wayne LAST year'
Several officers took part in this including then Cpt. Garry Hamilton...and were PAID OVERTIME to take part in the program...
Paid for by the taxpayers of Ft. Wayne.
Yes, it was at YOUR expense, fellow taxpayers.
But perhaps never again...unless someone wants to do it FOR FREE...and by a CIVILIAN group like a CHURCH.
-- This story is about the farm bill and food stamps:
Even though there is this $800 MIL in cuts, it's not all that (about one percent, really).
NO ciggies, NO booze, and NO Crunch 'N Munch!
The farm bill would spend roughly $100 BIL a year, with 80% going to the SNAP program (that's too much).
The cuts have REPs saying it's too little, while the DEMs say it's too much.
*** Lastly today...government IS way too big...especially for it's OWN shoes.
Someone CAULK that butt-crack!
It's TOO intrusive, TOO secretive, TOO costly, and TOO self-serving.
And each political party has it's OWN agenda...make no mistake about that.
Perhaps ONE party serves itself MORE than another, but that's going to happen.
And the type of government we created when the Founders skulled this out, was not what we have "evolved" into, that's for sure.
By evolving, I mean moving FORWARD...let's make sure we all understand that.
Some would say we are moving forward, but they are referring to TIME, which we all know to be linear in nature
We are more just going along WITH time, riding it's coattails.
This nation needs to take a serious look at itself, and that means placing the level of government in the cross-hairs of scrutiny.
The feds are too involved with too much too often and all too many times, for the wrong reason.
Like this new (executive ordered) "Affordable SAVINGS act"...ROFL...here we go again.
THEY need to step back NOW, and allow the STATES to have the power when it comes to citizens.
The job of the FEDS is to protect the nation and her people from all threats, foreign and domestic...and in this particular case, protect the people FROM the government itself. Helluva conundrum one can find there, hmm?
It's not an impossible task or an impossible dream...just the common sense thing to do...for ALL concerned.
Be well, make a difference to someone , and...
Stay SAFE out there, America.


CWMartin said...

Today's drill....

The propane thing- half of me wants to say, "But Bob, maybe it was a deal where the problem in the pipeline just started now..." And the other half says, "Sounds like more of that 'Planned obsolesence'..." Either way, if the stat AG wants to go after propane price gouging like he says he does, I say, start at the top.

Next, you never lived in a trailer, where all the meters are outside, and the only thing they dislike more than freezing is un-freezing.

Affordable savings... if it's like affordable health care, we really are screwed. Why do we really need government run IRAs and 401ks anyway?

Finally- if the powers that be are going to bust you for a picture... why couldn't it be for "butt-crack man"? LOL

Bob G. said...

If you recall, the OIL companies pulled a "maintenance" gig a year or two ago, sending Midwest fuel prices past $4 a gallon...when everyone else was doing a lot better (and cheaper).

Makes me think it could be caused by "government MANDATES"...
Do it when THEY say you should.

I say you may be correct on both points.

I agree that trailers (and homes on slabs w/ crawl spaces) are BOTH very susceptible to meter freeze...but how much would it really take to mount them INSIDE...or (better yet) attach them to the OUTSIDE...BUT INSULATE the hell outta them.
(I know...another multi-million dollar "idea" of mine that won't see a red cent for either of us...lol)

I don't think b-c man is copyrighted...LMAO!
I honestly thought it was because of all those WORDS I reprinted that the government is looking for that could be perceievd as being detrimental to the security of the nation...
Who'da thunk it would have come from the land of FRUITS and NUTS?

Hey, thanks for sledding on over today and commenting.

Stay safe and warm up there in the Klondike province known as Sambonia.

CWMartin said...

Ours at the last place WAS boxed and insulated... broke twice that winter.

Bob G. said...

Perhaps an electric "heat wrap" would work, as long as it only came on when the temperature reacehd 32 degrees F.
There are ways to defeat this, if the utility companies stop and take the time to think it through, hmm?

gadfly said...

Water meters inside the house! Seems to me that that is an oddball place since meter readers could not look through walls when your house was built. So was that location determined by the water utility, the building inspector or the home builder? I am betting on the utility.

Now I have to tell you that my meter is in a really strange place - it was buried in my front lawn when the house was built in 1960. I have been in the house since late 1998 and I am on my third meter. The stupid meter is only down about six inches and the cover is an iron casting.

John DuMond said...

"...society has just substituted one form of slavery for another."

Truer words were never spoken. And the sad thing is that this seems to go unnoticed by millions of Americans. I guess the distraction strategy of bread and circuses (or is it iPhones and MTV?) has paid off.

Bob G. said...

Our is located in the NW corner of the basement, seems to be UTILITY-INSTALLED, and we used to let the guy down there to read it before they installed the reader box (read from the street now).
I've heard about meter-burials...just never seen one, and that makes NO sense, as it SHOULD be BELOW the FROST LINE (about 4 ft down).
Our IS below the frost line - 6 ft under the lawn (INSIDE the house)

You'd need a heater to keep that bugger from blowing itself out!

Maybe you should look into HOW it could be moved, the cost, and whether it would be worth it (would seem a good option).

Thanks for stopping by today to comment.
Always appreciated.

Stay safe out there.

Bob G. said...

John D.:
You don't know HOW true that rings (what YOU said here), because Friday's post addresses JUST that - the bread and circuses thing.

Look at those in "poverty" (real or feigned), or dealing drugs, or covered in bling...another form of slavery, and that's only the tip of a HUGE societal iceberg (and we all seem to be sailing on the Titanic).

It's ALL about being entertained...distracted, confused...deceived...take your pick. They're ALL correct.
No wrong choice there.

Hey, thanks for rolling up today to comment.

You stay safe out there.

Slamdunk said...

Well I hope you enjoy the "heat wave" that we will be getting with temps above 30 degrees.

With Douglass, it is too bad that many people do not recognize what he did. At a previous job, I worked on several history projects and they viewed Douglass as a conformist and not someone who should be celebrated--they wanted to cheer some of the more radicals of his day. They also pooped on the idea of recognizing anyone not African American who was a valued part of the Underground Railroad (felt like non-whites should be getting all the attention.

It was a shame because they were missing out on an important piece of history.

Enjoy your weekend Bob.

Bob G. said...

Yeah...never thought I'd consider THIRTY DEGREES a heatwave...lol.

Douglass was so much MORE than what main-stream history portrays him as...and that's typical of today's world.
When in search of the ENTIRE truth, we always have to "scratch the surface" to uncover ALL that needs to be known, and I'm glad you appreciate that.
He was certainly amde of "strener stuff", wasn't he?

Thanks for stopping by to comment.
Have yourself a good weeknd.
Stay safe out there.