Sunday, December 8, 2019

The Impact of California Prop 65 on Ecommerce

Let's see if the Law of Unintended Consequences is going to kick in here.

California cancer and birth-defect warning requirements that took effect in August 2018 have stopped at least some online merchants from selling products to state residents.

Although the new requirements place primary responsibility for providing warnings on product manufacturers, retail businesses (including ecommerce retailers without physical locations in California) cannot knowingly sell products to California residents that expose them to chemicals that could cause cancer, birth defects, or other reproductive harm — without providing clear and reasonable warnings.
According to the article, due to the complexities and trapdoors related to Prop 65, merchants and producers would slap on a sticker just to cover their asses.  Now they must SHOW what the cancer-causing chemical is.

Looking on line I find there are companies formed whose sole purpose is to assist companies in finding their way through the minefield put in place by Prop 65.

This is a great youtube video by a company that represents businesses that have been slapped with a non-compliance to prop 65.

To sum up some of the salient points:

1) Jerry Brown realized there were problems with the prevailing law and wanted to reform it.  But even he could not reform it.

2) The lawyer being interviewed called it a "cottage industry" for lawyers when he first got involved.  He came to realize it was a MANSION industry.

3) The "safe harbor"  wording is pretty much worthless.  "Safe harbor" is putting the yellow triangle and the word WARNING in bold black.  You must specify the hazard due to cancer OR reproductive harm or both if that is the case. And you must specify the chemical(s).

4) The vast majority are settled out of court. To take it to court will cost you $millions to $10s of millions.

5) And here's the worst: You decide not to sell to California and you are safe right?  WRONG! If your product ends up in California for sale and is tested and your product is not in compliance, YOU WILL BE SERVED.
Yet again, California effs the rest of the country with their idiocy.  As usual, government says they are here to help us, the exact opposite happens.

Yeah, the argument is not about a stupid label.  The consequences are far reaching.

Saturday, December 7, 2019

California bans hotels from using tiny plastic bottles

Boy, all you have to do is ask the question and you get an answer.
Hotels in the nation's most populous state will have to stop giving guests small plastic shampoo bottles under a new law set to take effect starting in 2023.

Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Wednesday he had signed a law banning hotels from giving guests plastic bottles filled with shampoo, conditioner or soap. It takes effect in 2023 for hotels with more than 50 rooms and 2024 for hotels with less than 50 rooms.

Violators could be fined $500 for a first offense and $2,000 for subsequent violations.
The article mentions that some large hotel chains were already in the process of banning these.  If so, why did CA need a LAW to carry this out?

California becomes the first state to ban fur products

While in South Korea I bought my wife a fur wrap.

A REAL fur wrap.  Not a fake one.  Now I read fur products are banned in CA.
The bill, authored by state assemblymaker Laura Friedman, applies to all new clothing, handbags, shoes and other items made with fur. Those who violate the law would be subject to civil penalties. Used fur and taxidermy products are exempt from the ban, along with leather, cowhide and shearling. Fur products used for religious purposes or by Native American tribes are also exempt, and fur lawfully taken with a hunting license is still allowed.
The devolving of CA into an African nation is continuing.

California Farmer Fights Government Claim That Dirt Is a Pollutant

I found this article hard to follow and had to read it several times due to its compactness and complexity.  But for sure, the one thing that stuck out of all of this was the  roughshod work of the Army Corp of Engineers.  They cast a wide net and dragged LaPLant in on this.

From what I could tell in this article, they most likely didn't do any due diligence to see if he even had any part in the supposed Clean Water Act violations.  It looks to me they just decided to let the courts sort it out.  And how much will this end up costing LaPlant because of the Corp's neglect in doing a proper check?  Thousands?  Hundreds of thousands?  Millions??
What’s particularly alarming to LaPant and other farmers familiar with his case is that in their view the Corps saw fit to modify the Clean Water Act without congressional approval, Francois said.

“There’s a pretty broad, clear statement in the Clean Water Act that you don’t need a permit for normal farming activities,” Francois said, adding:

This would include normal ranching, farming, forestry activities. But the Army has added multiple conditions that you have to meet for these protections [for such operations] to continue.

One of these conditions is that the property has to be tilled pretty regularly for this protection to continue. But there are many reasons why a farmer may suspend tilling. For example, cattle may have a higher price than wheat or corn, and so the land might be used for grazing for a period of time.

The Army has definitely added hurdles and obstacles to a pretty clear and simple statement of the Clean Water Act that you don’t need a permit for normal farming activities. In our view, what they’ve done is to change the policy decision Congress made.

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

After Years of Threats, Schwab Joins Exodus, to Move Headquarters from San Francisco to Texas

The Great Wolf Richter brings us a blockbuster report:
“As we’ve said previously, our strategy is to maintain our headquarters in San Francisco, where the firm was founded,” said a Charles Schwab spokeswoman in December 2016. The company had threatened to leave San Francisco in an arm-twist tactic with its landlord as its office lease was coming up for renewal. It worked apparently, and Schwab renewed the lease on its 417,000 square feet at 211 Main St. for another 10 years, and San Francisco breathed a sigh of false relief.

At the time, it had already made the decision to build a new campus in Westlake (northwest of Dallas-Fort Worth Airport), Texas. In October 2018, it filed plans to more than double the office space at the Westlake campus to 1.16 million square feet to accommodate up to 7,000 worker bees.
Schwab talked a good talk and kept the cat toy jiggling. SF was happy to watch the cat toy and leave Schwab alone. Otherwise, SF and the whole state of CA bureaucracy would pounce and scratch the company's eyes out as it sucks as many taxes, penalties and fines out of them as they possibly could. And then once done (if there is a such thing) would bid a final “don’t let the door hit you in the ass” thanks-for-nothing farewell.

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Why Wind Turbines Threaten Endangered Species With Extinction

I wanted to push on this point of what wind turbines are doing to birds.  And I just can't get over the SILENCE as the response to all of this.
In 2017, a team of scientists warned that the hoary bat, a migratory species, could go extinct if the expansion of wind farms continues.

“Unprecedented numbers of migratory bats are found dead beneath industrial-scale wind turbines during late summer and autumn in both North America and Europe,” writes Paul Cryan, a research biologist with the US Geological Survey.

Come on, you might be thinking. Surely there are greater threats to migratory bats than wind turbines?

There aren’t. “Wind energy facilities kill a significant number of bats far exceeding any documented natural or human-caused sources of mortality in the affected species,” writes Cryan.

Cryan is emphatic on this point. “There are no other well-documented threats to populations of migratory tree bats that cause mortality of similar magnitude to that observed at wind turbines.”

Another leading bat expert, Patricia Brown, agrees. More than a decade ago she warned California energy regulators that wind turbines could be the “nail in the coffin” for some migratory bat species.

Aren’t bats protected from wind turbines by government agencies enforcing the Endangered Species Act and other conservation laws? They're not.

“None of the migratory bats known to be most affected by wind turbines are protected by conservation laws,” writes Cryan, “nor is there a legal mandate driving research into the problem or implementation of potential solutions.”

Wind turbines have also emerged as one of the greatest human threats to many species of large, threatened and high-conservation value birds, after habitat loss from agriculture.

Wind energy threatens golden eagles, bald eagles, burrowing owls, red-tailed hawks, Swainson’s hawks, American kestrels, white-tailed kites, peregrine falcons, and prairie falcons, among many others.

The expansion of wind turbines could result in the extinction of the golden eagle in the western United States, where its population is at an unsustainably low level.

Real Extinction Rebellion: Environmentalists Furious as Wind Industry Slash & Burn Entire Forests

Yes, the very same people that say they are trying to SAVE THE PLANET are the very same ones guilty of wiping us out.  
What follows is an example of how German decisionmakers go about protecting the environment: chop down hundreds of acres of forests and pour thousands of tons on concrete reinforced with hundreds of tons of steel on huge beds of gravel, all hauled in by hundreds of truck loads. Then install skyscraper tall industrial bird-killing monstrosities.

Result: an idyllic forest gets turned into an industrial complex that can be seen and felt from miles away – in order to protect the climate.
I guess these guys completely forgot that trees absorb carbon dioxide.  Which means the PTB are either really stupid or are pushing an agenda to fill the pockets of a sector that will in turn fill their own pockets.

This reminds me of the hundreds of thousands of birds that includes some endangered and protected birds. But since wind generated power is "green", well dontcha know, it's A-OK!  But as far as I know NOT ONE farm owner has been prosecuted for this.

Friday, November 15, 2019

The Next Big Thing: Metal Powder Power Plants

The idea of burning metal for power or even propulsion has been around for a long time.  In fact, thermite is a mixture of iron oxide and aluminum powder. Solid fuel rockets use metal powder as well.

So it's not a stretch to ask if metal powder, in particular, iron, could be used to generate power.  And now we find out Holland is working on this.
The technology, however, is still in its infancy. It currently generates 20 kilowatts (kW) of power in a single cycle, which is as much as a domestic boiler. Industrial applications would require at least 80 megawatts (MW) – 4,000 times as much. This summer, the process is expected to hit 100 kW.

“We want to show that the energy transition is achievable and that we can overcome today’s energy problems,” Ruyters affirms, and companies such as Shell and Uniper, two of a total of ten backers of the project, have been infected by this optimism. The North Brabant region is also subsidising the project, and in future the scientists will also be working at the local innovation and research centre Metalot.
And the real beauty of the process is that the iron oxide can be converted BACK into iron. The idea is to use solar energy, when it is available to convert the iron oxide.  Here is a copy of the illustration from the website:
Schematische Darstellung des Kreislaufs der Metallverbrennung

Of course, the reasons they are doing this is not because we may run out of natural gas or to wean themselves off of Russian natural gas due to conflicts of loyalties with Western Powers.  No, their reason is to help fight Global Warming.

Personally, I find the idea appalling and disgusting.  But, ok, be that as it may.  I like the idea of having an alternative path for power.  And especially for the reasons I mentioned above. Western Europe has found itself drifting toward alliances with powers that don't have their best interests at heart.  Metal Powder power plants will give them back their independence.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

The Final Nails in the EU Coffin: EU bank to stop funding fossil fuel projects in 2 years

There is certainly only one thing that Industry needs besides steel and equipment.  And that is ENERGY.  Not just energy when the sun is up and the wind is blowing.  It needs it 24/7 all year long.

To constrain Industry to only renewable energy is to call the Funeral Horn for the advanced news of the Death of European Industry.

From this point on, the only projects that will be funded will be small ones - on the order of $10 - 50 million .  That's a guess on my part.  But for sure you can completely forget the development of multi billion dollar/Euro projects.  From the AP:
“We will stop financing fossil fuels and we will launch the most ambitious climate investment strategy of any public financial institution anywhere,” the EIB’s president, Werner Hoyer, said in a statement.

Calling climate “the top issue on the political agenda of our time,” Hoyer noted scientists’ warnings that the planet is heading for a 3-4 degrees Celsius (5.4-7.2 Fahrenheit) increase in global average temperature by the end of the century.

“If that happens, large portions of our planet will become uninhabitable, with disastrous consequences for people around the world,” he said.

The 2015 Paris climate accord aims to cap global warming at no more than 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 Fahrenheit) by 2100 compared with pre-industrial times.

The policy change —which will also see the EIB prioritize lending for energy efficiency, low carbon technology and grid improvements — comes as the EU tries to ratchet up its climate efforts.
My prediction:  Massive numbers of people leaving the EU to reside in countries that aren't trying to strangle their own countries. 

We welcome all Europeans to live in the USA.  WELCOME!!

Monday, November 4, 2019

Cabon Tax in our future?

I had to attend a "sustainability" meeting at work today.  I'm glad I'm just a contractor and not a direct employee of the company.  One person said a carbon tax in the USA is in our future.  It could be as much as $40 per ton.

Well, we better hope not!

Here's a good youtube video that discusses the ramifications of such a tax.  Something the people in Canada are having to grapple with already.  The government leaders really don't give a SHIT about the environment.  They just want your MONEY!!

Thursday, October 31, 2019

Is California Becoming Premodern?

This is step 1.

The state's elite took revolving-door entries and exits for granted. They assumed that California was so naturally rich, beautiful and well-endowed that there would always be thousands of newcomers who would queue up for the weather, the shore, the mountains and the hip culture.

Yet California is nearing the logical limits of progressive adventurism in policy and politics.

Residents carefully plan long highway trips as if they were ancient explorers charting dangerous routes. Tourists warily enter downtown Los Angeles or San Francisco as if visiting a politically unstable nation.

Insatiable state tax collectors and agencies are viewed by the public as if they were corrupt officials of Third World countries seeking bribes. Californians flip their switches unsure of whether the lights will go on. Many are careful about what they say, terrified of progressive thought police who seem more worried about critics than criminals.

Our resolute ancestors took a century to turn a wilderness into California. Our irresolute generation in just a decade or two has been turning California into a wilderness.
Step 2:  Anarchy

Step 3: Communist/ La Raza Revolution in CA.  Oregon, Washington State (portion - breaks into West Washington and East Washington) join the Rebellion.

Step 4: US Military moves in to defeat Insurrection and Rebellion.  Patriots join the fight.

Step 5:  Insurrection is CRUSHED but at great cost. Thus ends the Second Civil War.

This is our future.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Vegetarian ate 1 burger, got hooked and became a butcher

I find this hilarious.  Vegetarianism or it's stepmother Veganism never made any sense to me.  Especially now that they are all gah-gah over fake looking meats. Insanity.

I think the woman looks BETTER since she started eating meat (however, I think she was pregnant in the photo on the left)
Jonas continues to support the cause of vegetarians, but hopes to find “the best way to eat on a finite planet,” and said farms like hers can “help reverse, or at least mitigate climate change.” She just hopes her vegetarian friends can accept her new lifestyle — while also calling out the booming plant-based meat industry.

“Hats off to you if you don’t want to participate in any livestock production, but try not to have too hard a go at those of us who are trying to restore landscapes with livestock,” she said, adding, “and doing a much better job of it than your vegan impossible burger.”

Monday, October 21, 2019

The “Supermarket Sweep” Addiction and decriminalization fuel a West Coast shoplifting boom.

This is just incredible.  We are watching the End of Civilization as we know it.
Unfortunately, as West Coast cities grapple with an addiction epidemic, the shoplifting boom has only accelerated because of decriminalization. California's Proposition 47, approved by nearly 60 percent of voters statewide in 2014, reclassified many drug and property felonies as misdemeanors, effectively decriminalizing thefts of $1,000 or less. Many criminals now believe, justifiably, that they can steal with impunity. For example, in San Francisco, police reported 33,000 car break-ins last year; the city now leads the nation in overall property crime. In Portland, a repeat offender nicknamed the “Hamburglar” stole $2,690 worth of meat in one year. He bluntly told police officers: “I know the law. I know the rules. I know what I can and can’t do . . . I’m never going to get over $1,000 at any store.” The Portland Police Department, which doesn’t assign officers to retail theft cases, admits that official statistics vastly underreport actual crime.
Why do I get the feeling that CA is being run by criminals?

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Meat industry sues California for animal protection 'overreach'

Well, here we are. I have often wondered when we would reach the "Point of Absurdity"

What do I mean?  Take a scenario.  Any scenario.  Now stretch it to its Point of Absurdity.  What happens?  Well, when it comes to governments, I suspect 90% of the time it will come to past.

A good example of this is the huge Federal Government debt. We have stretched the scenario to the actual Point of Absurdity. We are at the moment where the USA has ammassed more debt than any country in the history of the world.

So here we are with California. We are close to reaching the Point of Absurdity where CA has imposed such draconian restrictions on the farming sector.  What is the P.O.A.  I'm talking about?  The P.O.A. where these businesses will through up their hands and walk away.  At the P.O.A., they willl quit doing business with anyone in CA.

But knowing what we know of CA, they will look at this not as a Bug, but as a Feature.
The North American Meat Institute, whose members include processors such as Tyson Foods and retailers including Walmart, said enforcing Proposition 12 would hurt producers and consumers by significantly increasing their costs.

It also said the measure, which passed last November with 63% of the vote, was an "overreach" that violated the U.S. Constitution's Commerce Clause by requiring out-of-state producers to comply with California's rules or face a sales ban.

"Prop 12 hurts the family on a budget with higher prices for pork, veal and eggs, and unfairly punishes livestock producers outside of California by forcing them to spend millions more just to access California markets," Meat Institute President Julie Anna Potts said in a statement.
But just like Prop 2 where they first tried to affect the egg laying industry, their pleas will fall on deaf ears. This song has already been played.  The Commerce Clause apparently does not apply.

CA has such an outsized affect on EVERYTHING.  Whenever they pass laws that affect the manufacture of a product, all companies apply the law to the other 49 states.

I'm not sure how to stop this.  I think it will stop itself.  Out of complete frustration, the companies will decide to beat their CA plowshares into scrap metal and never do business there ever again.

Monday, September 30, 2019

Church leaders urge government to ban pointed kitchen knives

This is just getting more and more ridiculous as time moves on.  I think I even blogged about this unfolding story years ago.

Here's an article written way back in 2005.
A team from West Middlesex University Hospital said violent crime is on the increase - and kitchen knives are used in as many as half of all stabbings.

They argued many assaults are committed impulsively, prompted by alcohol and drugs, and a kitchen knife often makes an all too available weapon.

The research is published in the British Medical Journal.

The researchers said there was no reason for long pointed knives to be publicly available at all.

They consulted 10 top chefs from around the UK, and found such knives have little practical value in the kitchen.

None of the chefs felt such knives were essential, since the point of a short blade was just as useful when a sharp end was needed.

The researchers said a short pointed knife may cause a substantial superficial wound if used in an assault - but is unlikely to penetrate to inner organs.

Knife wound

Kitchen knives can inflict appalling wounds

In contrast, a pointed long blade pierces the body like "cutting into a ripe melon".

The use of knives is particularly worrying amongst adolescents, say the researchers, reporting that 24% of 16-year-olds have been shown to carry weapons, primarily knives.

And now the CHURCH is getting into the act.
Church leaders in the Diocese of Rochester have called for the government to enforce stricter rules on the sale of domestic knives.

They’ve written an open letter asking for a ban on the sale of pointed kitchen knives. The letter was also signed by leading crime experts, as well as MPs, and community leaders.

It comes after a conference called The Point in Chatham last week raised awareness of the issue, as statistics show that there has been an 80 per cent rise in knife crime in the UK since 2014.

The signatories have urged Government to "take urgent measures to promote the sale of safe kitchen knife designs and restrict those designs which have been used in so many acts of violence."

The letter endorses research, highlighted at the conference, which explains that points on domestic knives are historic and no-longer necessary.
 I think these people just need to get a LIFE!

And as far as the Church goes, maybe if they went back to their roots and did evangelizing they just might be able to convince people to deal with each other in a civilized manner.

And the whole idea that banning pointy knives will stop stabbings is just the most incredibly stupid and idiotic stance I've heard anyone take.  You can take any knife - pointy or no - and using a cheap grinder and Voila!  you have the point!!

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Doubling State’s 1,100 Wind Turbines Won’t Replace This One Coal/Gas Plant

If their plan is to kill people, I think this plan will succeed.

Because the wind only blows intermittently, wind turbines in Michigan have a 36% capacity factor. That is, they can produce 1,925.3 megawatts of electricity just 36% of the time, on average. This means that, theoretically, it would require building another 2,162 wind turbines to replace the Karn coal plant.

But even that would not meet the need, because there is not enough variation in weather across Michigan to ensure that if turbine blades aren’t spinning in one area, they will do so elsewhere. When the blades are not spinning, Michigan’s utilities and the customers who rely on them would have to hope that utilities in other states have extra power available to sell at reasonable rates.

Coal-fired generators provided 37% of Michigan’s net electricity generation in 2018, according to the federal Energy Information Administration. Renewable sources provided 8%, with more than half of that coming from wind turbines.

Consumers Energy retired seven of its coal-fired generation plants in 2016. In June, the company announced it was closing the two coal-fired units at the Karn plant as of 2023.

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Proposition 12. Another knife in the back of the poor

As I've said before:  GET OUT OF CA!!!  NOW!!

Proposition 12 picks up where Proposition 2 left off.  What this says is that the 2008 Prop 2 (essentially eliminating egg laying hens in confined cages) was sort of a "feeler" to see how far left the radical Left could actually push CA.

And the answer is:  They can go as far left as they want and no one in CA will put up a fight.

So here are my predictions:
- Step one: Restaurants will be compelled by law to sell meat alternatives.  Not just vegetarian fares such as a tossed salad.

- Step two: Restaurants will be compelled by law to replace some fares - say, for instance, beef - with these meat alternatives

- Step three: Restaurants will be compelled by law to slowly replace ALL meats with meat alternatives

- Step four: Right behind this will be the slow strangulation of grocery stores and what they can provide.  They will also end up having to slowly phase out meat.

And the end result?  Well, that's easy.  Massive layoffs in the food industry.  People will refuse to eat this shit.  Restaurants will close.

And who will be hurt by these"do-gooders"?   The poor!  Duh! 

CA: State Chaos and Criminal Enabler

I've been out of the loop regarding CA for a while.  I'm back in the saddle, covering my favorite whipping boy.  And it's important that we keep track of this Failed State.  Mainly - and sadly - because "As CA goes, so goes the nation."

To be forewarned is to be forearmed.  To see where the nation is headed, one only has to watch the slow motion train wreck of CA to be prepared.

Criminals on the whole aren't completely stupid.  They obviously do a risk/reward assessment and have come to the conclusion that Proposition 47 is a win-win for them.

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Andrew Cuomo and the Curious Case of the $81 Million Elevator

You have to ask yourself: How is this possible?   Why does it cost so much to get anything built in NYC?  This isn't hard to determine.  All you need to do is have a thrid party review the proposals.  This is not hard.

Earlier this year, a Connecticut woman died after she fell trying to carry her 1-year-old daughter in a stroller down a staircase in a New York City subway station.

The accident once again raised the question: In 2019, how does the subway system in the Greatest City on Earth™ not have elevators in every station?

Nine months later, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority has provided us with the answer: It costs $81 million to make a station wheelchair-accessible—between three to 10 times what peer cities pay for the same work. Eighty-one million dollars for an elevator, or perhaps two. It’s a scandalous figure, and one that says as much about the state of American public infrastructure at large as it does about New York. We’re no good at this, and no one seems to care.
But we are good at this. But municipalities and states are not good at this.  And the constraints and rules put on contractors is probably what is shackling contractors from doing projects in a reasonable time frame and a reasonable budget.

Friday, September 20, 2019

SCIENCE & TECH: 90 Per Cent of Plastic Waste Polluting Earth’s Oceans Comes From Asia and Africa

I noticed this in Mexico. It seemed to me that countries that had lax waste management were probably responsible for the platic trash that has found its way into the environment - whether its on land or  in our waterways or oceans.

And now there is a study that back up my theory.
During her U.S. tour, Thunberg cited “horrifying pictures of plastic in the oceans,” as one of the primary reasons why Americans should listen to her.

However, researchers at Germany’s Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research discovered that a small number of rivers account for the vast majority of plastic pollution and none of them are located in western countries.

“The 10 top-ranked rivers transport 88-95 percent of the global load into the sea,” Dr. Christian Schmidt, a hydrogeologist who led the study, told the Daily Mail. “The rivers with the highest estimated plastic loads are characterized by high population – for instance the Yangtze with over half a billion people.”

Out of the top ten rivers that produce the most pollution, eight are in Asia and two are in Africa. The Yangtze River in China and the Ganges River in India were responsible for the most plastic pollution.

Friday, September 13, 2019

BET founder Robert Johnson on Trump: ‘I give the president credit for doing positive things’

That evil, hateful and especially, RACIST TRUMP!!  Just thinking about him makes Leftist just completely lose it.

But what is this?? BET founder says something nice about Trump????  WHAT?? #$%^%!!!!
President Donald Trump has done “positive things” for the economy that have greatly benefited African Americans, said Robert Johnson, the successful Democratic businessman who started the BET television network nearly 40 years ago.<

“For African Americans, the trend continues to be favorable,” Johnson said Thursday on CNBC’s “Squawk Box.” “There used to be an old saying, ‘When White America catches a cold, African Americans get pneumonia.’ It’s going the opposite way now. White unemployment is going down, African American unemployment is going down. That’s a plus-plus that you can’t argue with.”

“I give the president credit for doing positive things; when I see a president doing positive things, particularly for African Americans,” added Johnson, who made history as America’s first black billionaire when he sold BET to Viacom in 2001. Shortly after the sale, he started the investment firm The RLJ Cos.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Peak Coffee

Peak Coffee: Has something else in our world peaked?

OK…so I started noticing a pattern. But it took several decades for me to see it form. 

First there was the tape cassette:

Then there was the floppy disk:

Then there was the memory stick (which are also found in a plethora of shapes and sizes:

Are you detecting a pattern?  It seems than when a technology becomes so common, so pervasive in our society and when companies have squeezed as much juice out of a product as they can, they always seem to be able to squeeze profits out of it one last time by… offering it in a variety of colors.  This tells us the tech has peaked.  And it is probably ready to be replaced by something else.

And so that gets us to Peak Coffee.  I was at the store the other day and this is what I saw:

So, what does this mean?

I don’t think it means that drinking coffee is dead.  What I think this means is that there is another new sophisticated coffee tech that is coming in the near future.

What will it be like?  Not a clue.

Or, I could be wrong and there is NO NEW coffee tech coming.

Who knows?  Maybe the old steel percolator is going to make a comeback.

And then.... the news comes out.  iPhone has cutting edge phones sporting the newest and best innovation of all time....

New colors.

When I heard about the Apple iPhone now available in a wide assortment of colors, it looked to me that the iPhone has been stretched as far as it will go.  

We can only hope for new groundbreaking innovation.

California Bill Means 'End for Independent Trucking' in State

In a stupid effort to strike one for the "little guy" by forcing independent drivers to be considered direct hire workers, CA has done to opposite.

They've destroyed the whole concept of the Independent Contractor.

“AB 5 could have been amended to address worker misclassification issues, as well as protect the 70,000 predominantly minority-owned truckers currently operating as independent contractors,” said Shawn Yadon, CEO of the California Trucking Association, in a press release issued by the association. “There is no reason why protecting workers does not include defending the right of tens of thousands of drivers who have built their businesses around the independent owner-operator model, invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in their trucks and have operated their own businesses for decades.”

CA does it again.  Perverts yet another part of their economy.

Friday, August 30, 2019

San Francisco: America's Dumping Ground for the Homeless

Just amazing!  And good to hear that the good people of SF are just done with it.

Other cities in the US are actually giving homeless bus tickets to SF just to get rid of their homeless.

80 per cent decline in religious funerals as mourners opt for golf courses and zoos over churches

The Great Apostasy continues.

An all-black dress code, pallbearers marching in unison, and a steady stream of tears are not often associated with golf courses, zoos and Chinese takeaways.

Yet according to the most extensive ever report on UK funeral trends which, the religious funeral is dying a death.

Instead of services in crematoriums, churches and cemeteries, Britons are instead opting for increasingly quirky ways to mourn their loved ones.

The Co-op, the UK’s largest national funeral provider which conducts more than 100,000 every year, has today published a report revealing that since 2011 there has been a 80 per cent decline in religious funerals.

Eight-years-ago 67 per cent of people requested traditional religious services and just 12 per cent were non-religious. However by 2018, just 13 per cent wanted a religious funeral.
"Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;"

Commentary: Reasons Why America Should Question Its Trade Relationship with China

It's time to rethink who we are buying stuff from. 
China is alleged to harvest the organs of thousands of political dissidents it keeps in concentration camps, it threatens Hong Kong and Taiwan daily, it appears to be funding and assisting the North Korean nuclear missile program and is using the hundreds of billions of dollars of trade deficits to build a first-rate navy to defeat the U.S. as every year’s trade deficit pays for more than two years of China’s military spending.

So why are we trading with China and underwriting this totalitarian regime and mass murder with $380 billion of trade deficits every year?

Saturday, August 24, 2019

The Donald and “the Blacks”

I picked up this story recently but it came out in 2016.  I for one get a little tired of hearing how racist President Trump is.  You don't grow a  billion dollar company by only hiring whites.  You hire the best.  And to get the best you have have a blind eye to color.
Meanwhile, in 1985, Donald Trump had bought the historic estate of Mar-a-Lago: a 128-room mansion on twenty acres in Palm Beach, Florida. He then began the long process of remodeling the property.

At the time, exclusive social clubs in Palm Beach were known for their “anti-Semitic policies.” As reported in the May 1991 issue of New York Magazine, the social clubs at Palm Beach “not only do not allow Jews and blacks to become members, they do not let members bring them as guests.” Accordingly, a town council election was “charged with undercurrents of anti-Semitism,” leading to a sharpening of the debate over the social clubs’ anti-Semitic policies. The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) demanded that the mayor of Palm Beach resign from the Sailfish Club because it discriminated.

One occasional visitor described the extraordinary levels of discrimination in Palm Beach: “It’s a theme park of anti-Semitism,” and “Jews go there to be treated like they were in the [nineteen] forties.” For example, Christian members who married Jews were forbidden from bringing their spouses to the clubs. New York Magazine complained: “The towns two most exclusive clubs, the Everglades and the Bath and Tennis Club, remain shameless bastions of anti-Semitism. No one even bothers to deny it.” Likewise, the president of the Beach Club informed a reporter: “According to the Constitution, a private club is permitted to discriminate.”

In 1991, a writer for Vanity Fair asked Donald Trump why he wasn’t a member of the Bath and Tennis Club. Allegedly, he had not been invited to join. But Trump replied: “Utter bullshit!” He referred to them as “phonies!” And he argued: “Do you think if I wanted to be a member they would have turned me down? I wouldn’t join that club, because they don’t take Blacks and Jews.”
[I]n 1995, Donald Trump opened up Mar-a-Lago as a brand new social club. Promptly, the Palm Beach town council tried to impose restrictions on membership, party attendance, photography, etc. But suddenly, Trump undercut them “with a searing attack, claiming that local officials seemed to accept the established private clubs in town that had excluded Jews and Blacks while imposing tough rules on his inclusive one.”

To scorn them, in the fall of 1996 Trump’s lawyer sent copies of classic movies on discrimination to each member of the Palm Beach town council. The movies were A Gentleman’s Agreement, about a journalist exposing anti-Semitism in New York, and the other one was Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, about a white woman who brings her black fiancĂ© to meet her white parents.

In December 1996, Donald Trump filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Palm Beach, alleging that the town was discriminating against Mar-a-Lago, partly because Trump’s “Mar-a-Lago was open to Jews and African-Americans.” The lawsuit sought $100 million in damages.

Despite some misgivings, the national director of the Anti-Defamation League, Abraham Foxman, was pleased that Trump denounced discriminatory policies at social clubs. Foxman said that Trump had exposed Palm Beach for “its seamier side of discrimination. It has an impact.”

By April 1997, Foxman reported that Jewish residents of Palm Beach had told him that now the clubs were changing, finally starting to admit Jewish patrons. Trump bragged that “Palm Beach is very much changing for the better, and a lot of that is because of Mar-a-Lago.”

Friday, August 23, 2019

Vegetarian teen disqualified from GCSE exam over Islamophobia for criticising halal meat

The exam board admitted it 'did not reach the right conclusion' 
Yeah.  What they thought was one of those disgusting ignorant slobbering CHRISTIANS was actually a vegetarian.  Then you see, that's ok. 
OCR apologised for the stress the disqualification had caused and wished Abigail luck with her GCSE results 
It added that it takes “all incidences of suspected offensive material against a religious group in exams very seriously” but admitted in this case, initially it “did not reach the right conclusion”.

Abigail’s Mum, Layla Ward, told The Telegraph she was pleased the disqualification was overturned, but “it should never have happened”.
The 36-year-old nurse said she thinks the disqualification was a result of an examiner being “over-zealous” and “over-righteous”.
This is truly remarkable.  So, now if you should slip up and say something they deem offensive you don't pass the test AT ALL. 

Standardized tests should be thrown in the trash bin.

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Dan Murphy: Alt-Meat vs. Dog Food

...and I failed the quiz!

Here are the three ingredient statements. Which one’s the dog food? 
A). Water, pea protein isolate, canola oil, refined coconut oil, rice protein, natural flavors, cocoa butter, mung bean protein, methylcellulose, potato starch, apple extract. Salt, potassium chloride, vinegar, lemon juice concentrate, sunflower lecithin, pomegranate fruit powder, beet juice extract. 
B). Peas, sweet potato, pea protein, pea starch, lentils, flaxseed meal, sunflower oil, calcium carbonate, vegetable flavoring, salt, folic acid, minerals and vitamins. \ 
C). Water, soy protein concentrate, coconut oil, sunflower oil, natural flavors, potato protein, methylcellulose, yeast extract, cultured dextrose, modified food starch, soy leghemoglobin, salt, soy protein isolate, and vitamins.
Good luck on this!  What a waste of time an effort to make fake meat. Just ditch your veganism or vegetarianism, and eat the real thing.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Lessons From a ‘Local Food’ Scam Artist

An amazingly well written article about a young gal tending a produce stand.
By the time I myself became a New Yorker, I was lucky: The farmers were teaching and collaborating with urban foodies at community-supported agriculture groups and the widely expanding greenmarkets. The New York locavores taught me that “local” didn’t mean a quasi-mystical authenticity, or, for that matter, only a special kind of deliciousness, but also a relationship with the people who’ve produced the food, in a sustainable, equitable, regional network of labor and land stewardship. I could now buy honey and stone fruits from a farm just outside my hometown, whose existence I’d never even suspected. I got involved in the day-to-day work of CSAs based in upstate New York and Pennsylvania; the farmers delivered to Brooklyn, redefining “local” again.
I've always believed that the answer wasn't organic food. The real answer was locally grown food.  I can't imagine the taste of a peach from Mexico could stand up to a locally grown South Carolina peach.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Want One of FCA’s 5,000 Promised Jobs? Get in Line

30 years later, Detroit finally gets a new assembly plant.

The State of Michigan and the City of Detroit cobbled together more than $290 million in incentives for the Detroit part of a $4.5 billion project. Fiat Chrysler is promising nearly 5,000 positions will open up in the city as part of the deal. 
The wages — which start at $17 per hour for line-workers and can go up to as high as $29.94 per hour, and even higher for skilled trades — make these FCA jobs competitive, said Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan. 
“They tell us on average they hire one in six people who come through the door,” said Duggan.
Well, we can hope all goes according to plan.  But I just wonder how much of the life the Unions will suck out of it before it even gets half built.

Sunday, August 4, 2019

Meet the people working to kick Chicago out of Illinois

Everyone in ILL wants to divorce themselves from the FUBAR known as Chicago.  They think that by "spinning off" Chicago, they will save themselves from the Pension Crisis where Chicago sits at Ground Zero.

Most likely, Chicago, with their hundreds of thousands of lawyers will find a way, even after a CHIXIT will find a way to shift ALL of their debt onto Illinois-minus-Chicago.

How do I know this?  Because that's how evil works.
In New Illinois’ Mount Vernon summit, Merritt takes the crowd through a list of grievances, many of which echo the interviews in Cramer’s book: state corruption is so bad, Illinois is a laughingstock; the state fiscal crisis and underfunded pensions spell a financial apocalypse — she conjures an “economic asteroid” headed our way; and since state representation is determined by population, not geography, rural voters aren’t getting the representative government the U.S. Constitution entitles them to. Chicago, because of political dominance driven by population, is walking all over them.