Sunday, June 29, 2008

Solar panels... that work at night?

I thought I'd seen it all but some braniacs over in Idaho have come up with a way to tap infrared energy.

Nightime solar panals

Actually I was thinking about something similar this week. With all the ambient electromagnetic bouncing around would it be possible to capture it for reuse? Think of it as recycled energy. Reason I thought of this is because when I was a kid I had a tiny crystal radio. You powered it by putting two allegator clips on the harp of the nearest lamp hence using the power bleed from the lamp. It only received one station but you didn't need to buy batteries.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

The incredible shrinking country

Home values as we all know are taking a dive. According to one analyst the equity in homes has gone down by $1.2 trillion. With the present economic situation banks are putting the squeeze on borrowers. With that you won't be seeing signs like this for quite some time:

Easy Credit

I don't know why anyone would want a $10,000 limit on a credit card. It's not like you could pay that one off at the end of the month. My general rule of tight finance is: If you can't pay for something within three months then don't buy it. I've had to change that recently because the banks have changed their ideas about the cards. Now if you skip a payment or even if you make a partial payment they can change the rates and add hefty fees. My new rule is if you can't pay it in full then get a fixed rate loan to pay it in full.

Zimbabwe

We won't be going there anytime soon.

After doing a brief study of the country via the cia world book ( I love getting something for my tax dollars). The country is in a mess. I know Shrub and his gang won't be in there anytime soon as they have no oil. But that seems to be the least of their troubles. In addition to having to import all of their oil they must purshase part of their electricity from neighboring countries. Mugabe put a freeze on prices that caused a run on food leaving stores empty. With short supplies inflation is through the roof. 30,000 Zimbabwe dollars are equal to one U.S. dollar. Unemployment is at 80%. Life expectancy is 39 years. The only exports of value are gold and platinum. Their total exports are 1.2 billion. Not a great prize for Shrubco.
The government put up an electric fence at the borders not to prevent invaders but to keep people from leaving. We have seen recently that after the crack down on the opposition party that people are fleeing the country. The people have pleaded for the U.S. or the U.N. to intervene but there is no indication that that will happen.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Busy Beaver


Must be a republican beaver eh?

Thursday, June 26, 2008

$162 BILLION



Congress just passed the war funding bill. The bottom line is really less than the $162 billion as there's money for the flood victims along the Mississippi. I'm not against the troops, but how much of this will really go to the troops and how much will go to Haliburton and KBR?

Oh, and a special note for Gary. Your wonderful friends in Washington cut the funding for Medicare (payments to Drs) by 10.6%. So if you are having problems getting medical attention or your doctor drops you, you'll know who to blame and it's not those "liberals".

War spending

Poll

Poll
I think taking military action against Iran now would be a:
Good idea - 6 votes (3.21%) Bad idea - 181 votes (96.79%)

This is a poll brought to you by the people who would actually have to fight - via Vet Voice

Who says the military has no intellegence. There is if you ask the right people...like the troops themselves.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Here's a question

If gasoline prices just across the border in Mexico are running around $2.50. Why aren't the independent gas stations in southern Ca. Az. and Texas contracting to buy Mexican gasoline. Even if they had to pay .50 a gallon for transportation costs, plus the federal and state taxes, they could still sell it under $3.75 and make a profit.
Just a thought

McCain says only World War III would justify draft

Help! We are surrounded by the biggest bunch of idiots this country has ever seen. Will somebody please escort McCain to the nearest retirement home.

McCain's brain or lack thereof

My next T shirt or jacket

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Random things

Part I
Just wondering where all of those petro dollars are going I wondered what the Arabs are doing with all that spare cash. After all you can only buy so many Rolls and I'm sure they have enough to have their wives covered in gold and jewels. I had forgotten about this little project they are working on for the last few years.


Starting prices for a home on this Arab Disneyland - 25 million.

Part II
GJG sent me a meme. I usually don't do memes but since he's retired and doesn't seem to have much else to do I'll humor him, but I must warn it won't be like reading Hemingway.

1. What were you doing five years ago
The same thing I've been doing for the last 18+ years Hazardous Waste removal.
2) What are 5 things on your to-do list for today?
Didn't have anything planned, I will need to start getting my tools ready for work they're probably moldy right now.
3) What are 5 snacks you enjoy?
Chocolate cake, mars dark bars, fudge, german chocolate cake, chocolate ice cream with chocolate sauce what can I say I'm a chocoholic.
4) What are five things you would do if you were a billionaire?
Buy a hotel and fill it with homeless people
Pay for somebodys operation
Invest in solar energy
Finish my dental work
Take a vacation
5) What are five jobs you’ve had?
Delivered free samples
Janitor
Photographer
Hazardous waste worker (Hazwoper)

I'd like to tag the following people Distributorcap, Busted Knuckles and Dark Black but hey I know you guys and you probably like your privacy so if you don't that's okay by me.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Poop meet fan


Called the boss and after almost 7 months of no work the feces is about to hit the fan next week so if my posting is light in the upcoming months you'll know why. The thing I hate about this is that it's like starting out on a marathon but the beginning is more like a sprint and the end is always a sprint. But to be out of shape at the beginning is the worse.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Bush blames Dems for high cost of gas


Ha! Leme see. Who's held the reigns of power in this country for the last 7 1/2 years? Who had the majority in congress? Who said they were going to do something about the high cost of gas when it was $2 a gallon? Who didn't even know that gas was $4 a gallon until a reporter told him? Who's daddy put out two executive orders to prevent drilling in these wild life areas?
There's 68 MILLION acres that can be drilled and the excuse is that it will take years to develop those areas. Well what makes you think any new areas could be developed any sooner?
I have an idea. Let's tax the crap out of the oil companys and use that money to subsidize gas in this country until we can develop renewabe energy. I'd love to see oil execs making less than janitors and have to get to work on $5 a gallon gas.

Read more of this deluded moron's thinking if you dare.

Bush's Brain or lack thereof

Thursday, June 19, 2008

New lighting tecnology

Here's the next generation of efficient lighting after the CFLs. They are OLEDs and they look promising.

http://www.komonews.com/news/tech/20564364.html

Wanted to get this out asap as there's a scheduled outage of Eblogger any minute now. More on this later.

John Mcain nuclear genious

John McCain wants us to build 45 nuclear power plants. First off let me say "Hey John you wouldn't mind if we store the spent fuel rods in your backyard would ya?"
A little personnal insight into how these plants are built and later decomissioned. I know personnaly because the company I worked for demoed one just two years ago. First off these plants take massive amounts of materiels to build not to mention labor costs and fuel to transport all that material. The amount of concrete is amazing. They are built so that if a full sized jet liner were to fly into the side of the containment building the aircraft would disintigrate on impact. It takes years to build a plant and hundreds of millions dollars. They have a life span of around 25 years before they must be torn down and rebuilt. Again a process that takes years and runs millions of dollars. So with the construction operating and demolition costs so high they are really not an economic answer to the problem. But don't try telling McCain and his cohorts the truth, they don't want to hear it. If they had their way we'd all be studying about the flat earth being the center of the solar system.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

The new Katrina


I've been trying to wrap my head around the flooding in Iowa to get a perspective in relation to Katrina. Depending on the weather this could be much worse. In looking at the figures so far some 5 million acres are expected to be under water. That works out to over 7800 square miles of land. On the plus side of this far fewer people lost their lives here than in Katrina but the loss in property and crops will be far greater. If you recall the flooding started just after tornadoes swept through the area.
This is going to hit everyone with very large crop losses. I'm hoping farmers might be able to plant another crop but that remains to be seen. Just wondering how long it will take for the land to be able to take a crop. Remember the floodwaters were contaminated with a number of nasty chemicals and sewage.

Monday, June 16, 2008

PVC shower curtains

PVC


Thought I'd give you my 2 cents on this as it's up my alley.
Polyvinyl chloride is a plastic derived from oil used in such things as water and sewer pipes, shower curtains and a number of other household products. In it's solid state it is fairly inocuous (not harmful) at least from the present knowledge. In its' liquid state it's one of the most toxic substances that I can think of with maybe the exception of Vx. The problem with PVC is that it off gasses the chemicals used to produce it. This is just like the formaldehyde problem with the Kitrina trailers but unlike the trailers PVC gives off more than one chemical. Three of the off gassing chemicals are the components of gasoline that includes: toluene, ethylbenzene, xylene. Toluene is a known carcinogine and the others are not too kind to your system either.
So what to do about the problem. You can switch to other types of curtains like nylon, polyester, or cotton. There is one other solution if the manufacturers would take the time and expense. That would be to treat the curtains to a process of ozone for a few days. The ozone process bonds oxygen to the plastic preventing additional release of the gasses. It's the same process nature uses to eliminate odors. It isn't an expensive process but it does take several days to complete. And no it not something you'd want to try at home although that could be done.

Pot meet kettle here we go again

Iran's assets

So now Britain and the U.S. want to freeze Irans' assets. I think you'll have a problem there boys. Iran moved its' assets about two years ago when Bush first started threatening that country. As anyone who's been following this would know. And it's not like you can hurt a country that has that much oil. I'm beginning to think this was preplanned. Note that the Saudis were actually going to try and bring oil prices down so they said. Hummm let me see, Bush has pissed off the Venezuelan leader who cut off oil to us, invades Iraq and has been trying to get their oil for over two years, now he wants to box in Iran. Can you say $10 to $15 a gallon gas? This juvenile we have for a president reminds me of the high school prankster who breaks into a business, trys to rob the place, then trashes everything just for good measure.

Groooovey baby



hat tip to Darkblack

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Fathers Day

Just thinking about what I'd get my day for fathers day if he were alive. In the later years of life there wasn't much he didn't already have or want. Yes he did make it through the depression and had to do without for many years. And as the years went by material things were really not that important. So I guess if he were alive I'd give him the satisfaction in knowing that I'd done alright with my life and managed to save a little money and own my own home. I know that would be satisfaction enough for me knowing that my offspring had managed to overcome lifes challanges and had a few sucesses along the way.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Random




I'd say these two gifs discribe me. I think they're t shirt graphics I stumbled across while lost on the web.

I'm from the government I'm here to help

The government accountability office gave the FDA a list of changes last year (2007) to be implemented into their proceedures. Of over 30 changes to be made only about 7 have been acted upon.
After the latest cases of food poisoning and at a senate hearing on food safety Dr David Acheson who is the associate commissioner for foods told the committee that the FDA would need six to eight weeks just to give details of the FDA's safety plans, when they will be implemented and the cost.

Now you would think that after the spinach contamination and a similar problem with lettice not to mention this is the second time around for tomatoes, that the FDA would get their act together and establish a system to quickly identify where the produce was grown and where it ended up at the supermarket. It really doesn't take a lot of work to track. I have to do that in my job. Every bag, box, or drum must be labeled with the date, the place it was generated and who is the owner. And yes we do tons and tons of hazardous materials. Oddly enough we use the same 4ft boxes that watermelons are shipped in.

I've seen how much of our food is produced in this country and I know that a large part of it has some sort of tracking number. Maybe it's time to put numbers on produce and ground meats then the process would make it easy to recall any food produce.

Large beaver

Thursday, June 12, 2008

More republican hypocracy

You remember Larry Craig that wonderful family values anti homosexual senator who got caught trying to solicit sex in a mens restroom at the airport. Well now we have a conservative judge, appointed by Reagan so you know he's republican, having to remove himself from the bench because his personnal website contains some pornography. The case he's hearing is about pornography. And if you think this is some isolated example of republican hypocracy just google "republican sex scandals" and see what comes up (no pun intended). This holier than thou party has more skeletons in their closet than a halloween party on Friday the thirteenth. Needless to say I hate hypocrites.

Judge sicko

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Hillary Clinton fans

For all you Hillary fans who are pouting and planning to vote for John McCain, stop for a moment and ask yourself if you would do so after reading about Carol Shepp



Finally found a current photo of her.

A Republican opinion of McCain

And a connected article
The Real McCain

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

McCain = Bush

The Bush approval ratings according to a recent CBS poll are at 25%. It's now common knowledge that McCain voted with Bush 95% of the time last year. Those saying the country is on the wrong track were at 83%. That leaves only a mere 17% who think things are peachy. Now by logic since 75% of the people polled don't like Bush and even more think we are going in the wrong direction and we know McCain will not win the election then why bother to waste all that time, money and long winded speeches on the inevitable. Let's just suspend the election inaugurate Obama and get it over with. This entire election process has looked nothing more than a bad reality show. The MSM has tried it's best to inject as much excitement as the producers could muster on issues so trivial most HR people would overlook. And yet we must endore an entire summer and fall of punches and counter punches in a process where everybody knows the outcome. It's like watching a rerun of a football game. I'm only glad we aren't limited like in the old days to only three channels of the same convention coverage. There's the movie channels now. And anyway most of us now get the news from the net. What ever happened to objective journalism? Did it go the way of Walter Cronkite?

http://www.allheadlinenews.com/articles/7011177549

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Tomato update


Now it looks like you can only eat tomatos you grow yourself, tomatos with the vine on, and a few other types. This is really puzzeling. I've seen how lettice is grown, picked and processed at least here in the U.S. There isn't much more that can be done here to protect that process that I could see. With other countries it's a different story. DDTs are still used in many countries and companies like DuPont and Monsanto will sell chemicals to agribusiness that we can't use here because they're outlawed here.
I noticed that Canada as usual is ahead of the game. They've stopped using uncooked tomatos in all restaurants until further notice.
With all the recalls and alerts on so many food stuffs maybe as they come up with biodegradable packaging it will be safe to eat the wrappers and throw the food out.

Oops almost forgot the link: Tomato

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Looking for truth?


Saw the unemployment rate today at 5.5%. Read a few blogs that said the rate was actually much higher than that. Sooo after a little research I came upon some very interesting stats on unemployment, inflation and other lies that we've been fed.

Lying with statistics

Friday, June 6, 2008

The Friday beaver shot

Wow what happened to the economy?

I gave you my two cents about our current financial situation on Wed. and today we get cold cocked with over $9 hike in oil and the markets taking a dump. I knew we were headed in that direction. I thought it would happen a bit more gradually than it did. You know of course what this will do for corporate spending? The short version : " The firings will continue until the economy improves!" Eeek I saw this happen in the early 80's and it's not pretty. Anybody out there remember their parents or grand parents tell them about the "great depression"? That will seem like a picnic compared to what is on the horizon. Think it's bad now wait a month or two.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Say Hi to

Gary aka gjg aka ThreeScorePlusTen

If you ever wanted to meet a real live (retired) rocket scientist then here's your chance. You can watch as he trys to construct a jazzy website (he's new to blogging so be kind). He He... we forgot to tell you Gary you've got to be a 12 year old with too much time on your hands to actually do it right.

And with that cruel joke I'll be nice and put a link in the sidebar.

Ah sportsmanship



Seattle Mariners manager John McLaren went into a profanity laced tirade after the teams last loss giving them the distinction of being in last place of all of baseball.

Well I have a little gift for John. Maybe this will help.

John McCain for President



And don't forget the first lady.


Sans make up

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The U.S. financial crisis

Call me a naysayer but I don't see anything great happening with our country anytime soon. First we have the subprime mortgage situation. That is still working its way through the system. This has directly affected the construction industry. There are some pockets of bright spots but on the whole home building is in the pits. There has been a great push for commercial building but even those plans have been downsized or delayed.
Second we now have a credit crisis as banks wanting to cover their rears from the defaults of the subprimes are forced to tighten their lending. Adding the speculators who have pushed oil to the stratesphere the effect is a perfect storm for economic disaster. In order to try and stave off an economic downturn they lowered rates but in doing so they gave the starting gun shot for other countries to pull money out of our country and invest in more profitable ventures overseas. The intent by lowering prime rates was to get banks to start lending again. The banks however are still trying to recover and are looking to present their shareholders with a positive profit so they have tightened their lending. And as more companies belt tighten by laying off workers the economy sprirals downward even more. I saw this in the 1980's and it is happening again. But this time the safety nets are gone and the rules were changed to benefit the credit card companies. This is the main reason people are walking away from their homes but still paying their credit cards.
Then there's the airlines. With fuel prices cutting into thin profit margins and the airlines planning to cut trips and aircraft, I see no reason for the airlines to want to purchase new planes in the upcomming years. Boeing is said to have a large backlog of aircraft to build and they are actually hiring to try and meet the demand but with the situation as it is I can only see the cancellations of aircraft orders comming in the next year or two.
Then there's the auto industry. Back in the 80's when we had the opportunity to change the way we drive and the whole structure of transportation, the auto industries lulled us into that false sense of security of endless oil supplies and ever larger cars. Humvees, Suvs, pick up trucks and mini vans became the must haves of suburbia. The one or two concept cars like the EV1 that had great potential were killed at the expense of higher profits by the oil and car cos. So now the car companies are forced to rething and retool consumer needs. Problem is they are now years behind companies in Europe, China, and India who will get an easy foothold here in the U.S. and dominate our market. Luckily we have a few innovators here in this country who will be comming out with some good ideas very soon. The "big three" automakers are likely to go the way of TWA and Pan Am as they refuse to adapt in a timely manner.
So maybe as Barak Obama takes the office next year he can come up with a type of new deal to try and save this country from the mess we are now in. Don't expect miracles though it took 8 years to totally mess up our country and it may take 10 years or more to straighten things out.

The next generation of cars






As gas has screamed past $4 a gallon and expected to go to $5 or $6 companies are racing to get their new ideas into production.

And if we don't get busy solving the oil situation we'll all be driving something like this:

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Hillary just doesn't give up

There's conflicting reports about the Clinton campaign. Ap initially reported Obama the winner. Then the Clinton camp said not so fast it's not over yet. Last news blurb is saying Hillary is looking for a VP spot. I might have gone with this early in the campaign but after her win at all costs truth be damned tactics, I say no. Give her a remote position in some cabnet office or give her another shot at a national health care plan but not VP. She used too many plays from the Carl Rove playbook and we do not need another politician like that. We need to clean out the Bush attitude players and their ilk from the swamp. We need to get competant people in all of the critical positions and start rebuilding all departments. If you look closely at all major governmental departments in the federal government you will find that they have been gutted over the last eight years. I know Obama will get writers cramp from undoing all of the illegal signing statements that Shrub penned while in office.
Hillary has boxed herself into a corner and if the answer to her VP request is no by the delegates then she will have to fight to retain her senate seat. Remember she's quite a few million in debt and that money must be paid back.
Maybe we could make her head of domestic affairs (pun intended).

More food poisoning


If you live in the southwest think twice before buying tomatoes.

Bad Tomatoes

I really worry when I see articles like this because you never know where your produce was grown. This alert was listed for New Mexico and Texas (so far). The CDC is still investigating.

Update: Cases were found in the following states ( in Arizona, Utah, Colorado, Kansas, Idaho, Illinois and Indiana )

Once again CNN gets it wrong

The original report that actually aired on 60 minutes a few years back mentioned that cronies in the White House changed the reports on global warming. These cronies had no scientific background but took it upon themselves to censor any information they felt would have negative effects on corporate america.
The CNN header for this story makes it sound like it was NASA who misled the public. "NASA misled on global warming". Wrong guys it was Bush and his cronies who misled as they always have.

Republican interferance

Now according to the scientist from the 60 Minutes report the clock is ticking. We have about a ten year window to really do something about climate change before it's too late. And as usual our wonderful elected leaders are bringing out the fiddle so they can play while the planet burns.

Does Nero come to mind?

Monday, June 2, 2008

An R&B great has died


Bo Diddley

The last time I saw him was in the movie Blues Brothers 2000 one of my favorite films just to see the blues greats. He will be missed.

Great summary on the gas situation


From a snarky penguin say hi to: Badtux


Here's a sampling of a comment from his blog:

Well, Yossi, those are not U.S. gallons, not Imperial gallons, so they're smaller than the gallons you may be familiar with. But anyhow, the deal is that while gasoline prices have been higher in some places for quite some time, that's because of road taxes. You may have been paying $5 a gallon in France ten years ago, but $4 of that was taxes to discourage people from driving. French farmers didn't pay that for fuel to operate their farm machinery. French railroads didn't pay that for fuel to operate their diesel locomotives. French shipping companies didn't pay that for fuel to operate their ships. French airlines didn't pay that for fuel to operate their aircraft.

But U.S. road taxes on fuel are minimal -- they haven't been raised in over a decade (thus why our roads are falling apart). So what you see is what *everybody* pays -- railroads, shippers, airline companies, everybody. The repercussions are going to reverberate through the economy. There are already truckers who are walking away from their trucks because Wal-mart won't pay them enough money to cover the fuel to haul their shit to Wal-mart so they can't pay the payment on their trucks and so they walk away and let it get repo'ed by the lenders because that's all they can do. The remains of the U.S. railroad network are already overtaxed as truck traffic shifts to rail (steel-on-steel has much less friction than rubber-on-concrete and diesel-electric power plants are extremely efficient). But our rail network was built when the U.S. had 1/3rd of the population that it has now. There is no way that it can carry everything needed to sustain technological civilization without significant infrastructure investments that are not being made.

The next problem, as was pointed out by distributorcap, is going to be *food*. The migrant workers who follow the harvests from north to south over the course of the year need some way to do that. Right now they own crappy old cars that also serve as their homes in far too many cases. But if they can't get gasoline for their cars, they can't get to where they need to be to do the harvesting. Then there's the farm equipment itself, which burns fuel. And the harvest gets carried to the processing plant via, for the most part, gasoline-powered trucks -- during citrus harvesting season locally, it's pretty interesting watching these stake-side trucks hauling down the road full of lemons or oranges or whatever to the nearest processing plant or distribution center. And there's fertilizer. Fertilizer is basically a way of turning oil into food. It's going to get significantly more expensive now. And people are going to start starving all around the world.

Then there's the impending national bankruptcy of the United States, part of which is related to these fuel prices, which will render the U.S. incapable of importing oil at all. When North Korea lost access to fertilizer and fuel for their farm machinery, their food production dropped by TWO THIRDS. If U.S. food production dropped by 2/3rds, there would be widespread starvation around the world and a whole lot of hunger within the United States itself. Ironically, the people most likely to be fed are those who are most spat upon today -- the manual laborers of America, whose ranks will swell as muscle power replaces oil. 

More later on the repercussions. Let's just say that the collapse of the American Empire will make the collapse of the Weimar Republic look like tapioca pudding insofar as its effect upon the world goes. Germany in 1933 did not have the ability to project forces worldwide in an attempt to seize at gunpoint resources needed to maintain its economy, and Germany in 1933 didn't have nuclear weapons. The U.S. in 2010 under President McCain will have both of those... meaning, if major U.S. cities don't end up glowing in the dark, I'm a penguin.

- Badtux the Pessimist Penguin

Couldn't have written a better summary myself - Demeur

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Great idea


Somebody's going to get smart and start a company with this business concept:

Cheap gas

A small chain offers customers prepaid gas. The chain buys gas and stores it in large tanks or buys long term contracts at lower costs.
Only wish they had this here I'd have jumped on it.