Tuesday, September 25, 2012

3624 True speaking

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

It's always been and will always be the same in the world:
the horse does the work and the coachman is tipped.


(Note - I find the music overlay in this clip enormously annoying.)

Ya gotta admit, the man can speak to the people:


But what's more important is that you KNOW, from the top of your head to the tips of your toes, that unlike a lot of politicians he completely believes in everything he says.  Nothing is just "political expediency".  

Now, whether you agree with his beliefs and goals is something else.  But you've got to grant him honesty and integrity.

3623 National recognition for volunteers? Yeah, sure.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The most exciting phrase to hear in science,
the one that heralds new discoveries,
is not "Eureka!', but
"That's funny..."
-- Isaac Asimov --


Lamarr Wilson (Wilsontech1 on YouTube) made some good points in a recent video blog (now called, Heaven help us, a "vlog") about those nationally televised awards shows, in particular the recent Emmys, but by extension also the Oscars.  He points out that actors are paid, and in most cases overpaid, to act.   So why is there a nationally televised awards show to honor those who simply do their job?  Especially a superficial job, not exactly a great contribution to humanity?

Why not a nationally televised awards show, Lamarr asks, for the best cops?  Or firefighters?  Or teachers?  Or doctors?  Or volunteers? Or my own contribution - why not televise the awarding of the Nobel and Pulitzer Prizes? 

(Lamarr points out that many of the best shows never win awards, but crappy "Two and a Half Men" has won 9 Emmys.  Actually, that's a bit misleading.  Eight of those Emmys were for cinematography, not for a wonderful script, or storyline, or acting.  One went to Jon Cryer for playing Alan, which I can sort of agree with.)

An aside - being nominated for an Emmy is not itself an honor.  Show producers nominate their own shows.  They send in clips for consideration in various categories.  Practically everyone who nominates themselves is "nominated".  Nomination has no meaning whatsoever.  It doesn't matter how wonderful your show is, if you don't send clips or send them in time, then you aren't nominated.  Shrug.  And that's why many of the best most-loved shows never win anything - simply because the producers didn't nominate the show, for whatever reason.  Some producers have been known to hold this over actors' heads.  "Straighten up, or we won't nominate you."

In my opinion, the Oscar and Emmy shows, and the red carpet, and "best and worst dressed", and all the crap surrounding them, are all simply the industry people networking with each other, and the televised parts are nothing more than a multi-hour commercial foisted on us.  Really.  It's just a commercial.  They're selling you their product.

So, are there any nationally televised awards shows for anything that matters?  Anything that contributes to society?  Ok, elections, if you consider public office an award for effective campaigning.  What else?  Hmmmm.  We have beauty pageants.  Talent shows.  Sports shows.

Nope, nothing much that matters.  Bread and circuses.  Ho hum.

Monday, September 24, 2012

3622 Gas burbles

Monday, September 24, 2012

If there is love, smallpox scars are as pretty as dimples.
-- Japanese proverb --


I was planning to go upriver this afternoon, so this morning I took Fred The Van to get gas.  His gauge doesn't work any more, so when I get gas I set the trip odometer, and I know he's good for 300 miles.  He's sitting at 287 now, so I knew he'd need filling before the trip.

Nope.  The pump kept cutting out.  It wouldn't even put a few drops in.  The internet lists a slew of possible reasons.  Fred is now at the car hospital getting his throat checked.  Also his hips - he's still leaking transmission fluid.  I'm afraid he may be giving up.  Although he's eleven years old, he has fewer than 65,000 miles on him.

Last time I went upriver I took Hal The BMW.  I filled him before we left, and then I filled him when we got back, just to check for really really (not what the computer says) what his MPG is. 

I was amazed!  This time the trip was almost exactly 300 miles because of some side trips I took, plus I did the whole trip with the top down, and he took 10.2 gallons on return.  Holy Whatever!  That's like 30 mpg!  (Fred gets about 20-23, depending, believe it or not, on how much crosswind we have.)

That's pretty durn good, considering how hot-blooded Hal is.  And his not wearing his hat had to have screwed with his wind resistance. 

Man, I do love manual (standard) shift.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

3621 US- amputate, Canada- save, is that our choice?

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Success can be redefined.


People who are against "Obamacare" point to the Canadian healthcare system as something awful, something to avoid at all costs.  And somehow they seem to be able to find some Canadians who don't like it.  But it seems to me that there are a lot more Canadians who like it.  Like this one:


Oddly enough, those Canadians who don't like it are alive and kicking.  And it seems to me that there are a lot more Americans who are dying from depredations of insurance companies, or are financially devastated by the American health care system.

Really, is it only rich Americans, Congressmen, and rich foreigners who deserve American medical care?

I don't understand.