We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Wednesday, April 20. 2011
He never should have said that semen wards off depression: Sexism Charges Divide Surgeons’ Group
Distinguished surgeon gets Larry-Summers-ized
Which one is insane?
My point being that the macropod expert sees Irwin as a person too. I'd say that Irwin has got it pretty good when you consider the lifestyle of your average paralyzed Kangaroo.
Apocalyptic fantasies appeal to all sorts
Fire-causing CFL bulbs
Fire-causing Chevy Volts
The reparations will continue until that half of the populace that sucks at the trough is dead or too fat to waddle to the polls.
Did Obama and Holder Scuttle Terror Finance Prosecutions?
True, but I think there was a deal there: We get an Obamacare waiver, and we'll hire 50,000. Maggie's Farm wants a waiver, but we don't know who to call.
The more the feds try to lower the cost, the worse the problem becomes.
Government distorts markets. Problems inevitably ensue. Then government steps in to claim to solve the problems they created - while blaming it on markets.
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I find it facinating that Maggie's Farm is now heavily endorsing CFL light bulbs and electric cars.
Inadvertantly, to be sure, but the numbers speak for themselves:
"Fire-causing CFL bulbs"
Discounting the (somewhat likely) possibility that it was the lamp sockets and their cheap wiring, not the bulbs, that caught fire, let's assume that every instance they listed was correct and the bulbs were entirely at fault.
How many CFLs have been sold? A billion? And only twenty have caught fire? By the numbers, that means it's more likely you'll be hit by a meteor than have a CFL blow up. All in all, that's quite an endorsement.
Which brings us to...
"Fire-causing Chevy Volts"
Pardon me, but did someone say "Volts", plural? Only one Volt caught fire, and notice how the asshat who wrote the article didn't even wait for the results to come in. Mr. I-Echo-The-Party-Line saw the words "electric car" and "fire" and immediately jumped to his foregone conclusion.
Somewhere out there today, a gas-burning car is going to catch fire, and it'll have nothing, whatsoever, to do with the fact that it runs on gas. By the time the results come in on the Volt, it'll turn out the guy threw something in the trunk like a shovel which cut the brake light wire and that's what caused the fire. Who knows?
But how many years have electric cars been made? And this is the first story you've read about one catching fire? Like the CFLs, that's quite a track record, and again acts as a heavy endorsement for the safety of the product.
So congratulations to Maggie's Farm for breaking free from the bonds of ideology and, in the spirit of fairness, posting links that highlight how safe these two products really are.
It reminds me of the fair and balanced piece on Greenpeace the other day. Two years ago, some company was about ready to dump 300,000 metric tons of iron oxide into the ocean to 'feed' the algae that feed on carbon dioxide, all in an effort to stop global warming. And who stepped up to the plate and helped put an end to this madness?
So it's nice to see all sides being fairly portrayed here on ol' Maggie's Farm.
Aw shucks, Dr. Merc. Just having fun with the Greenies, that's all.
Fact is, those twirly bulbs I have tried burn out just as fast as the incandescents - and cost more.
Fact is, those twirly bulbs I have tried burn out just as fast as the incandescents - and cost more.
There are places where CFL bulbs are not appropriate: where the light is turned on and off in a matter of minutes. That will wear out a CFL bulb. much faster than a incandescent bulb. I have read that they need to be used at least an hour at a time in order to be economically feasible.
I have incandesent bulbs in places where I have the light on for only short intervals: closets, stairway, hallway, bathrooms.
Also note that the energy saved with a CFL with a light turned on for five minutes a day is trivial. You are saving money and expending a trivial extra amount of energy to keep incandescents in places where you have the light on for short intervals.
Where I have the light on for hours at a time, such as study, kitchen, or living room, I use CFLs.
My experience with CFLs put in places where the light is on for hours a day has been that they last for years: five to six years. I bought my CFLs at Lowe's.
But then, Captain Tom and I don't always agree.[ see below comment]. He doesn't like wearing shorts, and I wear them 9 months out of the year. IMHO, only a masochist wears pants in 105 degree weather. The only hot places I don't wear shorts are in Latin America, where wearing shorts is frowned upon.
I'm a big fan of dimmers on lights, CFLs don't work for me.
And of course, GM engineers said, with complete and total authority based on...well...nothing I guess that the Volt DID NOT START THE FIRE! That the damage to the battery indicated that the fire did not start there!!!1!!!11
Interesting that a second fire response to the site of the fire had to be made because the fire rekindled - right under the battery of the Volt - again. Also interesting that the initial Fire Marshall's report indicated by the intensity of the fire that it started at or near the battery compartment of the Volt.
BUT THE BATTERY DID NOT START THE FIRE!!1!!!11
GM said so.
With respect to CFLs - pah I get better use out of incandescent bulbs than those crappy CFLs.
Ya beat me to it, Doc. I was thinking the same thing about the CFLs. Though I seethe with resentment at being forced to buy them, I actually like CFLs, but I would like buying them to be my idea.
As for Volt, it is idiocy to build a car no one wants. Having said that, some years back I lost a tractor to fire and it started with the battery. A regular 12 volt automotive battery. Point being, normal batteries can catch fire and burn too, and they do once in a while.
In ten years of using CFLs, and about 10 bulbs, I have had one explode and emit hot sparks. They are definitely a real fire hazard. Incandescents are not, about the safest there is. Halogens are also a hazard, as they also have been known to explode. Safe halogens are surrounded by a thick glass clear shell to contain the hot glass shards (and which also attenuates the UV radiation emitted by halogens).
I'm with the others. I put CFL's only where it makes sense, where I can reduce my cash flow and achieve a payback time of four years. And now I had to put in a 20 year supply of incandescents for the fixtures that are inappropriate for CFLs.
Mandating CFL's is just another example of government moronicity and malevolence. Let the marketplace decide. It's craziness that complete and utter political boobs think they have superior wisdom to the market. If they're so smart, why aren't they filthy rich?
On taxes. Did anyone hear about the trial balloon floated in Minnesota about taxing us on the mileage we drive in a year?
Next up taxing people who stand in puddles/water. (Monty Python)
Oregon has been doing this for a while in a test program and a couple of cities in California I believe also trying it.
It isn't a new idea - been around for a few years. Supposedly it will replace the gas tax - like I believe that one.
Since we're on the subject, what is the difference between a Merchant Mariner and a male prostitute?
One is a merchant seaman, the other is a semen merchant.
And I loved reading this at 5-something in the morning:
" ...the mood-enhancing effects of semen on women."
It always has enhanced my mood, anyway!
Regarding electric cars - in 115 years we have gone from extremely safe and reliable vehicles powered by Edison (nickel-iron) batteries to hotwheel-type cars powered by thousands of small lithium-ion or NiMH cells. All change is not progress! I'm waiting for someone to develop safer battery technology before I switch, and even then I'll try the new stuff in my golf cart, now powered by good old-fashioned lead-acid blocks. Energy density notwithstanding, lead-acid works fine in home-built cars all over the country, at least for 20-30 miles of range.
Things I have yet to find out are how that kangaroo got injured and paralyzed, what was going to happen to it, and how Ms. Carr got possession of it.
CFL bulbs were touted as the lamp of the future, saving us all from certain destruction. And incandescent bulb will be banned later. So now we're told CFLs need to be left on for 15 minutes. Not only that, they're hazardous waste when broken.
I have a number of CFLs, and I have no problem with the light they produce. But, I've never had a problem, as outlined in the article linked, with incandescent lamps exploding/breaking in operation.
Re #2.1--Note that a mileage tax would cover electric cars, too, and penalize those with mucho mileage on high-mpg cars. Wouldn't differentiate between 5mpg and 35mpg cars.
Greenfield should be canned as head of ACS, not because of a stupid attempt at sexual humor (although this is incredibly dumb in today's PC environment), but because he actually takes seriously a 'study' by the evolutionary psychologists, which profession is quackery wrapped in pseudoscience. This disqualifies him IMO from having sufficient intellectual qualifications for flipping burgers at McD's, much less being head of a surgical specialty organization.
Irwin the kangaroo is paralyzed, and so I'm guessing he's not a danger to anyone when he's out in public. He could bite someone, of course, but so far he's shown no history of that. So I'm just wondering if all those folks in Broken Arrow who own pit bull dogs and Rottweilers and German shepherds and Pinschers are required to post a bond of $50K, too. Based on the statistics, those dogs are biters and a potential hazard to the public (yeah, yeah, yeah---it's the owner who's the hazard because he doesn't handle and train his animal properly). If I were Ms. Carr, I'd attach a fashionable dog leash to Irwin and tell the city to stuff it. Legally she would be in full compliance with the Broken Arrow city council's requirement that Irwin be kept in restraints when in public. After all, a dog leash is, I presume, all that's required of dog owners who walk their animals in public. As for whether it is inappropriate of Ms. Carr to dress Irwin in clothes, how do the so-called wildlife experts KNOW whether that's so. Have they asked Irwin if he's got a problem with that? Somehow I have the feeling they haven't done so, in which case it's none of their business...unless she is being cruel and causing him physical pain, which no one has alleged in the least, in fact quite the opposite is true.
re: Post-Retirement work---The reason a portion (85% in fact) of SS benefits is taxed is to put it on the same tax-footing as other pension plans. However, I would prefer to see no tax placed on SS benefits until the employee has "recaptured" all of his SS payroll deductions (the premiums he contributed into the system while he worked). Once he has recovered the principal, then I think it would be fair to tax the employer's contributions and even the fictitious appreciation that SS imputes to each beneficiary's account. I also think the early retirement age, not just the full retirement age, should be raised gradually in order to stabilize the system in order to preserve it for the next generations of workers. It makes no sense to me to raise the one age limit but not the other. A few decades from now, it will be common for people to live to the age of 90 or even past 100. If people continue to retire at 62, they will be collecting SS for 30-40 years---after working for almost the same length of time---instead of for the 7-10 years that the first several generations of SS recipients collected benefits.