Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Johnnie To

I was wasting time, surfin' the 'net and stumbled across an article about my favorite movie director's latest release.
Inventing new ways to maim, kill, or double-cross: It's a responsibility that has long vexed 58-year-old director and producer Johnnie To. On the surface, his movies are consistent with the tradition that produced him. Like all the rest, they are stories of loyalty and brotherhood featuring obsessive, hunch-driven cops and swaggering triad gang members and always ending with bodies scattered everywhere, perforated with bullet holes.
 -Grantland (article is mediocre)
Except for "Heroic Trio,"  I recommend watching everything from Johnnie To.

Don't watch any movie from China, or Hong Kong, dubbed.  They are all terrible dubbed, watch them subtitled.

Fulltime Killer (full movie):


from the linked article:
In 2015, To plans to release the third installment of Election, his classic meditation on triad bureaucracy.
Sweet.

---

My favorite movies:
  • The Good, The Bad, The Weird
  • Exiled (from Johnnie To)
  • Cowboy Bebop
  • Once Upon A Time in the West


Friday, December 27, 2013

Quality

A few days ago I lamented the lack of quality apparent in our culture today.

Recently my dad had a flat tire where the sidewall blew out.  He's suspicious the guys at the oil change place overinflated the tire.  (He did say that the cop, who waited in his car, was nice enough to illuminate the place where he was changing his tire with his headlights.)

My deer skin got back from the butcher shop recently.  I am 100% sure it is not the skin from the buck I killed.  This skin has a tag with my name on it punched through an ear, even though I kept the whole head when I left the deer at the shop. 

It seems to me that I'll need to be doing all my oil changes and deer processing myself.  It seems that these are two more cases of things where I am better off doing them myself.

We could add public safety to that list too.  What I've learned about police this month is that they won't help changing tires, they are of no use when we are robbed, and they are of no value in finding those responsible for hit and run damage.  Not to mention, just for starters that cops are apparently trained how to minimize their chances at being punished for murdering people.

What good are police?

One more thing that I've noticed about quality comes from my part time job at a sporting goods retailer.  Shoppers looking at binoculars are often disappointed when they learn that companies like Leupold, Vortex, and Zeiss have their stuff made in China.  These shoppers are invariably the ones that want to buy the cheapest stuff.

You can't complain that binoculars aren't made in America anymore, and simultaneously buy the cheapest stuff available.

Either pay more for your stuff, or stop complaining that in order for their to be cheap stuff available it needs to be made overseas.  The reason everything is made overseas is because you are all too cheap to pay for stuff that is made here.

All this leaves me with two questions:
  1. How do I keep from smelling like oil all day after changing mine?
  2. What do I do with the old oil once its out of the car?

Monday, December 23, 2013

Regular posting at Shoot Deer

Now that my book is out, and one with pictures and better editing is coming soon.  And now that the Wisconsin deer season is nearly over.  I have more time for posting at my blog

shootdeer.wordpress.com

I do have internet connectivity issues, though so my total blog output may not be as much as I would like.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Societal News

It seems that some guy on some tv show said something that offended somebody.  (Hell of a fad; that show.)

Even when a few of the blogs that I regularly read post about this sort of thing, I can't bring myself to care.

It seems like there have been lots of news stories where everyone gets all excited...and I can't seem to care.  (I can't recall any other examples of this either.)

On a related note: it occurred to me recently that I have no idea who any of the current starlets are.  If I've heard of some model or actress, then she's past her prime already.  (They probably have a short shelf life.)

Wasn't [insert young starlet name here] hot in movie x?

Beats me.  The last movie I watched was this one.  It was good.

Not watching tv or new movies has its perks.  (If Johnnie To's new movies were released here, I could be persuaded to attend one.)

 Also:
"I’d love to meet the market executive who thought the one thing keeping Obamacare from being popular was lack of smug hipsters." -FrankJ
 That reminds me, what the hell is a "hipster" and why should I care?

Thursday, December 19, 2013

A Lack of Quality

I wonder about the lack of quality in many things today.
I wonder why unemployed men during the Great Depression dress better than most do today (including me).

I wonder why people want things that "on sale" more than the things that aren't.

I wonder why I made my book available as an eBook before getting someone else to proofread it (that's being done now).

Why does everyone buy cheap junk over good stuff?

And so on.

It strikes me that everyone's desire for a "deal" and everyone's desire for more has come at the expense of quality.  How many times have you bought a cheap object and then ended up buying the more expensive better one later?

I can understand the desire to have more, and bigger, and better things, but when you buy cheap junk you're still left with junk.

I'm struck by the fact that even though I would like to buy certain things of quality (even if I need to pay more) I am having a difficult time in finding them.

I would like to buy a good pair of alligator/ crocodile/ ostrich shoes.  I have no idea where I need to go in order to do so.  Might a trip to Chicago be necessary in order to find them?  Where would I look once I'm there?

The fact that everybody seems to want only the cheapest or "on sale" items means that the places that sell stuff often don't bother with the things of quality.  Why sell what no one is willing to pay for?

Because almost everyone buys the cheapest stuff that they think they can get away with, the makers of quality products must be being driven out of business.  Why should I begin a career of fine furniture building if you're going to buy some plywood furniture anyway?

Isn't having one item of quality better than having lots of junk?

This isn't much of a post, but I'd appreciate it if next time you consider buying something that you buy what you think is of the best quality rather than buying the cheapest.  Support the people and businesses who create high quality products, and leave the junk peddlers to rot.

On the plus side; its quite easy to do things like dress better than others in many places because of the low standards set by everyone else.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Confessions of an Online Hustler

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61bHOxTgd6L.jpg



Matt Forney's book: Confessions of an Online Hustler: How to Make Money and Become an Internet Superstar is an informative book on how to make a living through the internet.


It seems that Matt has spent years trying to make a living through the internet by various means.  His listing, and descriptions, of the various things that he's tried, was interesting as a study of what's out there, and was also interesting as to some things to avoid.

The guides and specifics of what to do in order to be as successful as possible are very informative and could help reduce much of the trial and error you upcoming internet hustlers need to do in order to be successful.  Not only does he go over to main points to hit (start blog, identify what of your writing is most read, start new blog on this subject, write book, add advertisements, etc.) he even covers things such as the arrangement of your blog!

He specifies exactly why you should do everything how he suggests with all of the examinations of all the experience he has gained in online hustling.  Including: blog hosts, blog arrangement, driving traffic, etc.

His details are specific, his experience is genuine, and his writing is always interesting, and never boring.


Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Celebrity

Althouse linked to a story about a NFL player doing something (I didn't actually look to find out what) for a heart transplant recipient.

While I'm sure whatever it was was nice enough, I wonder how many celebrities get letters, fan mail, etc. and expect some sort of reply.  If they respond to everything, then they'll have time for little else.  And if they don't respond to heart transplant patients, then they're jerks.

Seems to be a no-win situation for the celebrities.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Evil

I've missed a lot since deer season began; one thing I noticed was a discovery of absolute evil.

Detroit's War on Small Business
Amidst a bankruptcy and a fast-dwindling population and tax base, the city has prioritized the task of ensuring that all businesses are in compliance with its codes and permitting. To accomplish this, Mayor David Bing announced in January that he'd assembled a task force to execute Operation Compliance.

Operation Compliance began with the stated goal of shutting down 20 businesses a week. Since its inception, Operation Compliance has resulted in the closure of 383 small businesses, with another 536 in the "process of compliance," according to figures provided to Reason TV by city officials.
How can that be any good for anything at all?

Is it not just blatant destruction of society?

Friday, December 6, 2013

Shoot Deer

My new book is out, and after a day, I've sold 0.  I don't expect to sell a pile of them, but I even more appreciate why people feel the need to lie and exaggerate in order to promote their stuff.

Now that deer season is mostly over here in Wisconsin, I'll be able to return to somewhat regular blogging.  Ironically, if I had wanted to maximize my sales of a book about hunting, I would have missed many days of hunting in order to write about it, and promote it. (Matt has a book on how to do this.  I read the book a while ago, but have been so busy, I have not reviewed it here.)

I doubt that getting your hobbies and work combined is a good idea; every guy I know who wanted to get a job in fishing needed to specifically give up fishing time in order to work, and yet was expected to still catch more and bigger fish.

The Kindle Version is Done: Shoot Deer

My new book "Shoot Deer: A Beginner's Guide to Hunting Whitetails" is now available for ebooks from amazon.com, for $7.99.

203 pages of information covering all whitetail deer hunting topics from: which guns to buy, bows to buy, how to shoot them, where to hunt, how to improve your property, how to hang treestands, how to score deer, many mistakes to avoid, and more.

Any Amazon reviews are much appreciated.

 If you're a blogger and want to get a free version, let me know at eltim164 at gmail.com; I'll take all the promotion that I can get.  (Matt and Free Northerner can expect whatever they call the promo ones this evening after I'm done with work.)

http://www.amazon.com/Shoot-Deer-Beginners-Hunting-Whitetails-ebook/dp/B00H4JHX5K/ref=sr_1_3?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1386335883&sr=1-3&keywords=hunting+whitetails

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Ask Vic

I stopped watching tv in November of 2011.  This includes my no longer watching football, the only sport I ever cared to watch.  I do, however, still read the "Ask Vic" section of packers.com.

Today Vic, the packers.com editor answered a question that I think more people should read:
Hippolyte from boat on Lake Geneva

Vic, I go to school to Switzerland from France by boat. Boat rides can be boring, but you’re here to entertain them for me. I read your “Ask Vic” column on the way back from school and I read “Ask Vic Extra” on my way to school.

Vic

Hippo, put down the column and look around. Find a young woman from France with whom you might enjoy the view. “Ask Vic” is not meant for people like you. It’s meant for people who aren’t sure if the Packers should play the 3-4 or the 4-3.
I may no longer visit packers.com, because of that comment (read the whole of the day's questions for full effect).  But Vic is usually right (except about the Oxford comma), and reasonably amusing, so I think that someone should replace me as a regular reader.

If you are interested in the NFL, I suggest you read "Ask Vic" regularly.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

I'm Back!

I was busy shooting a big buck, doing more hunting, working, sleeping, and driving between them to post.

Also my book is done, and soon to be on Kindle.  I hope.  My next free hour (seriously) is december 4. So I hope that I get all of Amazon's stuff figured out tommorow.

Matt, Free Northerner, and my new friend Andrew will get free copies of my breakthroguh, groudbreakeing, and so on book " Shoot Deer: Better late than never: subtitle to be inserted here"!!!!

No I don't have a picture of my buck (19" 10 point) but I totally shot him.  Hooray!!!!

Also: what's with this Obummercare sheist?  Didn't anyone predict that it'd be terrible?

Monday, September 9, 2013

A No Corn Syrup Eating Challenge

Its been a week since I challenged you to avoid eating corn syrup for a week. 

How have you done?

Was it harder than expected?

Will you continue?

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Reason.com Comments


-The most telling thing about the government, John, is that the country has managed to continue to operate and people have an overall pretty good standard of living, despite the government and the criminal goons who staff it. It tells you how utterly meaningless having a government is, and how much of a relentless parasite it is, and how much it hinders otherwise "normal" life and commerce.

- "Still Going Despite the Government" should be our country's fucking slogan. Maybe in Latin.

-Illstay Oinggay Espiteday ethay Overnmentgay

American Wars

With news of war in Syria, I wonder how many wars have been good for America?

The Revolutionary War was legitimate and good.  No arguments with overthrowing tyranny.

The War of 1812 was legitimate.  No argument with keeping the aforementioned tyranny away.

The Civil War wasn't a "civil war" because the South did not want to control the Union.  The country was made up of voluntary members of a Union, when the South no longer wished to belong they should have been allowed to leave.

The Spanish American war seems silly in hindsight; had Cuba become a state we would, at least, have gotten something out of it.

As far as I know the Mexican-American War seemed legitimate in trying to prevent Pancho Villa's raids into America.

There are some who think that if America had not entered WWI it would have ended in a draw, no harsh conditions would have been placed on losing Germany, and Germans would not have voted for the political party that gave us WWII.

Defeating Japan in WWII was certainly legitimate, but what did we gain from fighting Germany?

What has been gained in every war since?  I begin to wonder.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Grocery Shopping

Why is it whenever I return from grocery shopping, I'm surprised with a number of my purchases?

Monday, September 2, 2013

A Healthier(-ish) Food Challenge

Most of the food we eat is highly processed, and full of artificial ingredients.  Thanks largely to the government's sugar tariffs many companies have realized that corn syrup, or high fructose corn syrup, is a much less expensive sweetener than real (and better for you) sugar.  (So called, "Mexican" Coke and Pepsi supposedly taste better than American made soda because Mexico does not have high sugar tariffs, and soda made in Mexico is made with the less expensive, and better, real sugar.)

High fructose corn syrup is in a huge number of products, and while its not awful itself (though its not good) the things it is in are not the sorts of things that you should be eating.

My challenge for you is to avoid eating anything with: "corn syrup," "fructose," high fructose corn syrup," and any other variation of it for a whole week.

This is a small step towards eating healthier, and only requires you to read the "ingredients" list on every package that you buy and avoid the corn syrup.

We shouldn't be eating any packaged stuff at all, but this is just a small challenge to get started.

I actually tried this challenge starting last Monday, but had a 15 hour work day on Tuesday and drank an energy drink.  I suppose coffee, which I don't drink, might have been better.  So, I'm trying it again.  Hopefully, I'll continue indefinitely. 

Join me, and let me know how you've done.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

No Income Tax = Success

Burt Folsom:
Shortly after the Civil War, Congress made the income tax a flat tax; then in 1872 Congress abolished the income tax completely. The war was over, and the U.S. would continue to stress individual liberty and limited government as the best way to happiness, prosperity and strong national character. As a nation, the U.S. decided to limit the outreach of government and pay off most of our Civil War debt.

When the rest of the world saw the U.S. emphasis on liberty and fiscal restraint, America became a magnet for the wealth of Europeans seeking a stable environment for their capital. The rise of the U.S. as a major world power was just around the corner.
No American income tax from 1872 until 1913. 

Guess which period of time it was when America caught up with the economies of the rest of the world?

More from Burt:
Those who favor class warfare sometimes cite Mark 10:23, which says, “Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, ‘How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God.’”

A closer look at the original Greek language clarifies God’s attitude toward the rich.

According to Greek scholar Kenneth Wuest, a better translation of Mark 10:23 shows that Jesus said, “How hard it is for those who keep on holding onto wealth to enter the kingdom of God.”

As 2 Corinthians 9:7 says, “God loves a cheerful giver.” Wealth is the opportunity to be a giver, and rich people can thus help people around the world.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

A Map! of people!

Thanks to Carnivore's Cave, we find a map! of every person in the country:

 

Link!

I now wonder why so much time is spent on blacks in the media.  It seems that Louisiana, Atlanta, Washington, D.C., NYC, and Chicago are where all the blacks live.  You'd think that the news would be all about whites and some about hispanics.

I like maps.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Healthcare Spending Growth is Down

Obamacare is working!

The growth in healthcare spending is slowing!

In totally unrelated news, fewer people have full time jobs than they did before and therefore have less health insurance, and so spend less on healthcare than they did before.

In other words, success for Obamacare!
In 2011, national healthcare spending climbed 3.9 percent, the same as the year before. That was the slowest increase since the 1960s - See more at: http://lfb.org/today/obamas-2009-promise-of-cheaper-health-care-has-morphed-into-2013-price-hikes/#sthash.JAe7b9hf.dpuf

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Quote of the Day, 8/25/2013

Fill your bath with ketchup and then bathe i was it. It is a most refreshing reward. Imagine your loved ones faces when they see you only wearing vinegar and tomato paste.

- N1GERI4GU3ST

Friday, August 23, 2013

Even "Good" Laws Harm You

Most people think that there is a purpose for having a government.  Most people also think that their government does some good.  Even libertarians think that some government should exist.

But all that government does is funded, one way or another, by first taking from those who produce things and then spending it as they feel like it.

And while that's not pointed out or criticized nearly enough, the point of this post is to explain that even when the government extorts taxes for its funds and then spends them in ways you think are good, it is still hurting, rather than helping you.

There are two ways the government hurts you with "good laws," by forcing you to pay for them, and by preventing you from being as productive as possible.

Let's look at the example of owning a car and the amount of your time that is wasted by the government.

Let's say you buy a car, after paying the government its cut, you need to buy a car license; that's about a half hour of your time spent getting one.  Then you need a new driver's license every ten years; that took me three hours a few months ago, and that comes out to around 1/3 of an hour a year.  Some of us are required to have our car's emissions checked yearly, that'll take me another two hours per year, plus another hour, and some money for an o2 sensor because mine always go bad.  Then you need to get car insurance, which will also take several hours.

Maybe you think requiring all of those things, drivers licenses, car licenses, emissions, etc, is a good thing.  Perhaps it is, but have you ever seen a study comparing the time wasted to the alleged benefits of having these laws?

A thought experiment for you:  Speed limits supposedly save lives.  Since saving lives is good, we want to do whatever saves the most lives, right? 

Speed limits are arbitrarily set.  If they were set, say, 10 mph higher everywhere, we could get from place to place a bit quicker.  If you drove 10 mph quicker to, and from, work each day, you might save 5 minutes per trip.  5 minutes per trip, times 2 trips per day, and 5 days a week, means that a 10 mph increase in the speed limits would mean you have 50 more minutes per week to be productive.  50 minutes per week times 50 weeks in a year equals, about, 42 hours wasted commuting each year because of speed limits.  42 hours per year times 40 years of working equals about 70 extra days of your life spent commuting merely because speed limits are not 10 mph higher.

That might be a fine rational for you.  Spend 70 more days of your life commuting than necessary, and a few lives might be saved. 

But everyone is slowed with our current laws.  1000 people slowed by speed limits at 70 days per year is 70,000 days per year not spent growing food, sewing clothes, inventing medicines, or other wise producing.  How many lives were lost thanks to this law? 

When we hit the point where the days lost to slow speeds exceeds the lives allegedly saved by the speed limits, shouldn't we reconsider them?

Have you ever even heard of a study comparing the lives lost becasue of a specific law compared to the alleged lives saved?

No one ever considers the hidden costs, we only look at the numbers of deaths each year and wish we could do better.

And we still haven't gotten to the fact that the traffic judge, prosecutor, cops, secretaries, etc, the materials, buildings, and cars they all use are not creating food to eat, clothes to wear, or homes to live in.  Each of those lives and resources is unproductive, and therefore wasteful.

Monday, August 19, 2013

The Elephant Whisperer

by Lawrence Anthony

Last year I listed my top ten favorite books of fiction.  A few changes may have happened since, but the top two books on my list are accounts of a pair of some of the most successful elephant hunters.

Commenter Vicomte wrote:
I take issue with your first two recommendations.

HUNTING ELEPHANTS?

Seriously, that's just messed up. If you like reading about that kind of crap, then you must be an awful person. Your obviously not aware of that elephants are kind, gentle creatures, and are very intelligent. Elephants have been known to cry and burry(sic) their dead loved ones. They even burry(sic) people that they find and think are dead. Sometimes they make a mistake and burry(sic) a person that is lost and has fellen(sic) asleep, but that's not there fault we're all human after all.

So if you want to go and read this garbage then I hope you enjoy being by yourself because thats(sic) where you'll be up in your IVORY tower because no one wnats(sic) to be with a jerk that murders animals because their sick and twisted.

If you want to read a good book about elephants by a decent and caring human being that truly appreciates the majesty of these beautiful creatures, I reccommend(sic) The Elephant Whisperer by Lawrence Anthony.
Firstly, I'd like to point out that some people are just no fun at all.

Secondly, am I being rude, or grammatically correct, in noting his, or her, spelling errors?

But the purpose of this post is to be about the book recommended in his, or her, comment.

To give you an idea of how far behind in my reading list I am, let me point out that I had not planned on reading this book, perhaps just reading a few Amazon reviews of it.  And so when the book was recommended I added it to my Amazon.com "wish list."  Then, last Christmas, my mother was insistent on asking me what I wanted for the holiday.  "Nothing," was not the correct answer, apparently.  So I directed her to my wish list and forgot about the book I was going to read reviews about eventually.  (Fascinating story, huh?)

So here we are with my new book, and I started reading it.

The book is about a guy who bought a game farm in South Africa.  He and his French wife ran (run?) it to show off the animals to tourists.

The author starts by talking about poachers killing animals in his preserve, their selling of the meat, and his attempts to stop them.  And so on, and so forth...

One day he receives a phone call asking him if he wants a small herd of elephants (seven, as it turns out).  He says, "yes," and spends a few chapters talking about his preparations for fencing them in and their transportation, etc.

I've only read a few chapters past this point but I have enough to tell you that Vicomte's idea of elephants being wonderful isn't as rosy a picture as he, and the author of the book would like us to believe.

The author and his wife (did I mention that she is French?  The author is very proud of this fact.) seem to enjoy living amongst the animals of Africa, and he paints a mostly rosy picture of their park and the animals.

But if you merely read the book, you'll notice that not everything is as nice as he leads us to believe.  He tells one story about his dog being harassed by some monkeys.  And one day his dog kills one.  After he pulls the dog away the monkeys silently collect their dead troop member and carried him away.   "I have no idea what they did with the body," he ends the story with.  He leads to that line by pointing out how wonderful nature and the animals are.

Note an excerpt from Vicomte's comment:
Elephants have been known to cry and burry(sic) their dead loved ones.
If you read this story you'd be led to believe the monkeys took their family member always, had a funeral, and buried him with respect...

That's what our author and Vicomte seem to think.  I like their thoughts on the subject.  They make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

Would you like to know what the monkeys almost certainly did, in reality?  They took their dead family member away, away from the dangerous dog, and...ate him.  You can't just go around leaving good meat to waste.

And that's much the story throughout as much of the book as I've read so far.  If you stretch you mind enough... and believe hard enough... you to can enjoy the wonderfulness of the world like Vicomte does.

I like the optimism and joy of that thinking, but to think that way you need to ignore reality.

The reason the relocated elephants need to be fenced in is because when they are not, they kill people and destroy homes and food.  "Conservation's Chernobyl," is how the book's author described what would happen if his elephants got out, again.

One more story from the book to more fully illustrate my point: The elephants are kept inside of an electrified fence.  They prefer to not touch it.  During one escape attempt the elephants pushed their least liked kin into the fence and tried to force him through it so that they would not get shocked.  That elephant wasn't pleased with the situation.

I like the pleasantness, too much is mean these days, but that pleasantness isn't reality. 

I'm not sure if I'll finish this book, The Odyssey is calling me.

Incidentally, have you heard about the elephants killing rhinos for fun?

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Quote of the Day, 8/15/2013

I've been unable to sleep these past few nights, because of how a Swiss lady didn't show Oprah a $40k handbag. Is society even worth saving?

-Sonic Charmer

Knowledge

Its occurred to me recently that language, writing, the printing press, the computer, and the internet may well be the greatest inventions of mankind.

With language, and writing, the information gathered by one can be shared by all.  Without the transmission of ideas we'd all need to start at the beginning.  No one would have time for things like cars and coffee machines, becasue we'd all first need to individually learn how to hunt, gather, and make fire.

Our growth has come from the accumulation of of the knowledge of those that came before us.  The more that cam before us the more knowledge that we have.

We can look at the less prosperous societies and we can find that it is the places with written language which have advanced the fastest.

For a while I had wondered why the West was so militarily superior to the East.  With reading China: A History, I discovered that until very recently the literacy rate for Chinese males was around 40%.  With literacy that low, not many people could learn by reading.  All needed to learn everything themselves, and reinvent everything themselves.  The spoken word gets garbled written words less so.

We can look at the economic advance of the world and see that the places with written words and high literacy have advanced the most.  The printing press was invented in Germany, and Europe has led the way ever since.  Is that a coincidence?

Places like China and India have economically lagged behind Europe, despite their great numbers of people occasionally inventing marvelous things.  Lots of people gives them the odds to invent things, but they do not advance on it without writing.  A chinsese guy invented gunpowder, but hundreds of years later they could still only think to use it for fireworks.  I'll bet that you can find gunpowder's uses multiplying only with writing.

And the people of the world that were just overwhelmed by stronger countries, people like "native americans" and Africans are the places that took the longest to acquire literacy.

***

More people means more advancement in ideas.

More writing and more literacy means more economic advancement.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

"Buy Local' is stupid

Lots of people support the idea of buying local goods and service rather than goods and services from elsewhere.  (Usually these people have Japanese cars; and their Japanese cars occasionally even have a "buy local" bumper sticker on them.)  This idea is stupid.

First some preparing thoughts.

Not all buying local is stupid.  If your only option is local, then no one will fault you for buying local.  And if your only option is something made a ways away, then that is your only option.

When the people who promote buying local seem to mean (excepting their own cars, and undoubtedly: their cell phones, tvs, computers...) is that buying locally supports your neighbors and is good.

There are many problems with this.

Buying local is not always an option, which means that you are either going to buy "distantly made" things or avoid that product altogether.

We can grow things like citrus fruits in places like New York, but the costs to do so will be nearly immeasurable.  We'd need heated greenhouses, sun lamps, etc.

Why is buying oranges from Florida worse than buying oranges grown in expensive (read as: required much electricity, manpower, and materials) greenhouses locally?

Why is are transportation costs worse than production costs?

Have you considered the transportation jobs lost by buying locally?

There are fundamental thoughts on economics ignored by avoiding the allowance of specialization.  Buy not allowing specialization (by not buying things made more efficiently) we would be made poorer by either not having many items or by producing them at much higher costs.

What the "buy local" crowd really seems to want us to do is to choose the local option when there is a local option easily available; shop at the local grocery store not Walmart, etc.  If they took their slogan literally they'd obviously need to give up their cars, tvs, cell phones, coffee, etc.

What this is is another way to feel good about doing good in a way that does not actually cost anyone any money or effort.  Or does it.

It seems to me that when comparing a local to non-local item, there are three options: the local item is better, the non-local item is better, the items are similar.

In the case of the local item being better than the non-local item, it makes sense to buy local, and so what is the point of a "buy local" slogan?

In the case of the non-local item being better, buying the local item instead means that a local producer is able to continue to make things worse, the better creator is not sustained, and you get a worse item.  The local producer is "helped," but everyone else is worse off.  In this case "buying local" is encouraging you to waste resources by buying worse items.

it is only in the case of the local and non-local items being of comparable quality and price that "buying locally" makes any sense.

***

Specialization is a wonderful thing.  It is by specializing one one, or few, things that we can all acquire the wealth generated when someone does not need to spend time doing lots of different things, and can spend all his time on one.

Buy whatever is best, at the best price, and resources won't be wasted making inferior products.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Manosphere Analogies Need Improvement

I was reading The Free Northerner's recent post, featuring links, and discovered a used car lot dating analogy.

Revisiting The Used Car Lot

exerpt:
If this was the case, the assertions above would be false since there would be enough supply to be a zero-sum game. To use the analogy in the linked post, the used-car lot is apt. Men are the buyers and women are the sellers. What we have right now is a car lot full of broken down rusted out vehicles that either don’t work or barely work with price tags that far exceed the representative value of each of those vehicles.

Now the price tags on these vehicles (women) are already much too high for their representative values. But the representative argument of these two posts is that men should work to pay MORE for these broken down rusted out vehicles. Perhaps another false assumption is at work: If men are willing to pay more, women will provide higher quality product. There are abundant proofs that this is not the case.
Many manosphere writers use analogies to explain points.  Comparing women to cars is a fine use of an analogy...if you are talking to a guy.

The purpose of an analogy is to say, "this thing you're unfamiliar with is very similar to this other thing you know all about."

I've bought cars.  Most of you guys have bought cars.  But how many women see "car" and roll their eyes and think no further?

(I like it that way.  I doubt that I'd have much interest in a girl who knows all about cars.  If she could take care of the cleaning, and I could take care of the cars, that would be much preferable to the other way 'round.)

If girls don't spend much time thinking about cars, and its been my experience that the subject is very uninteresting to them.  Much like when a girl brings up the pop musician of the month, and I lose interest in the subject.

On the other hand, the manoshpere, such as it is, exists to help men not women.   So the above example is fine, but i wouldn't use it in order to explain things to a chick.

Also, if you ever use a baseball analogy while talking to a girl, you are an idiot.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Windows 8 Stinks

I just built a computer, and I needed to decide between windows 7 and 8 for my operating system.

I went with 8 despite the claims that it was bad because:
  • everyone seems to complain about every windows version
  • All the complaints seemed to be much ado about nothing
  • I figured that the newer version would last longer before becoming obsolete
  • The new improved speed and security advertising sounded good
After using Windows 8 for a while I realize that those who do not like the fact that Windows 8 was clearly designed for touch screen tablets were correct.

This missing "start" button is more of a pain than you'd think.

The only ways I know how to turn the computer off are "Ctrl+Alt+Delete" or to hit the power button on the case.

I do not like all the stupid msn/ Microsoft windows for news and other Microsoft software cluttering the screen whenever i hit the "Windows" button.

I don't like how there are a handful of icons hidden along the right side of the screen that appear when I don't want them and I can never get them to appear when I want to see what they are.  After two weeks the best I can tell is that the top hidden icon is "search" or maybe "magnify", and I have no idea about the others.

I miss the start button more than you'd think I would.

But the worst part, by far, is the fact that I'm supposed to register my copy of windows.  A screen telling me to go to the screen to do so comes up whenever the computer turns on or returns from a screen saver.  When that blue screen of "Activate Windows" comes up Nothing works except to hit the button that takes me to another "Activate Windows" screen.

This second screen is white, the left half is full of all sorts of stupid "personalization" options I couldn't care less about, and the right side says something like "You can activate by internet or by phone."  This is followed by a perpetual "waiting to connect" [to the internet], despite the fact that I can hit the windows button and then the stupid desktop window icon, and then do all I want on the internet.

If these stupid screens wouldn't come up all the time I'd ignore them.  But every so often they'll close whatever I was doing and pop back up.

So I tried activating by phone.  I tried three or four times to type the million-digit product code (or whatever), but I am unable to hit the numbers fast enough to prevent the phone from giving me the: "is there a problem? Are you confused? Let's restart you're taking too long."

So I tried entering the numbers in by voice instead of hitting the number buttons.  I entered the first section of the product code "A" when prompted, then I did B, C, and D.  But before going to E it went to F without giving me the time to enter part E.  My options seemed to be start all over, or say, "to hell with this."

***

Windows 8 sucks.

Listen to the complaints about it.

Get windows 7 instead; it is fine.

To hell with you Windows 8!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Minimum Wages

Last week I noted that raising the minimum wage is a stupid idea.  Why not raise it to $1 million per hour?

But I wonder, is there any argument that you could make for increasing the minimum wage to $15 or whatever, that you could not also make for $1m?

Logical arguments:

Minimum wages are stupid
The minimum wage should be hugely high

If you are not going to make one of those two arguments, then Shirley you must be admitting that the reason you proposed minimum wage is not higher is because having it too high would hurt the economy.  And so you've settled on an arbitrary number.

Can it be any other way?  Are there any arguments for $15 that you couldn't use for $1 million without admitting that minimum wages harm the economy?

One more example of progressive politics being about the gain of progressives at the expense of someone else.  And to heck with everyone else.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Obamacare will be Awful: Links

No kidding, right?

Socialized medicine is bad in Canada.

Universal healthcare is bankrupting Japan.  Let the elderly die, says one politician.

And our politicians, who lovingly voted for Obamacare, have opted themselves out of it.

How wonderful.


"Everyone has a right to free medical care, but there is, in effect, no medicine and no care."

-Murry Rothbard

***

Also note that I was going to add a few select quotes from the linked articles, but Blogger was not allowing me to copy and paste.  Stupid Blogger.  Use Wordpress for blogging.
“everyone has the right to free medical care, but there is, in effect, no medicine and no care.” - See more at: http://lfb.org/today/a-cure-for-obamacare-from-canada-with-love/#sthash.XwMKTzFG.dpuf
A recent study on Canadian health care has been released late last year. In it, the authors examine the deleterious effects of socialized medicine on patient wait times and the delivery of care. It offers Americans a revealing glimpse of the future economic implications of Obamacare.
Released by the Fraser Institute, the December 2012 survey of specialists reveals that Canadians are now waiting 17.7 weeks between the referral to a specialist and the delivery of treatment. This is 91% longer than in 1993, when the institute began studying wait times.
In essence, wait times in Canada have doubled in the past 20 years. Sadly, the rationing of care that results in lengthy wait times for patients is a predictable consequence of government interference in the medical system.
- See more at: http://lfb.org/today/a-cure-for-obamacare-from-canada-with-love/#sthash.Zqh8Adkr.dpu
A recent study on Canadian health care has been released late last year. In it, the authors examine the deleterious effects of socialized medicine on patient wait times and the delivery of care. It offers Americans a revealing glimpse of the future economic implications of Obamacare.
Released by the Fraser Institute, the December 2012 survey of specialists reveals that Canadians are now waiting 17.7 weeks between the referral to a specialist and the delivery of treatment. This is 91% longer than in 1993, when the institute began studying wait times.
In essence, wait times in Canada have doubled in the past 20 years. Sadly, the rationing of care that results in lengthy wait times for patients is a predictable consequence of government interference in the medical system.
- See more at: http://lfb.org/today/a-cure-for-obamacare-from-canada-with-love/#sthash.Zqh8Adkr.d
A recent study on Canadian health care has been released late last year. In it, the authors examine the deleterious effects of socialized medicine on patient wait times and the delivery of care. It offers Americans a revealing glimpse of the future economic implications of Obamacare.
Released by the Fraser Institute, the December 2012 survey of specialists reveals that Canadians are now waiting 17.7 weeks between the referral to a specialist and the delivery of treatment. This is 91% longer than in 1993, when the institute began studying wait times.
In essence, wait times in Canada have doubled in the past 20 years. Sadly, the rationing of care that results in lengthy wait times for patients is a predictable consequence of government interference in the medical system.
- See more at: http://lfb.org/today/a-cure-for-obamacare-from-canada-with-love/#sthash.Zqh8Adkr.dpuf
A recent study on Canadian health care has been released late last year. In it, the authors examine the deleterious effects of socialized medicine on patient wait times and the delivery of care. It offers Americans a revealing glimpse of the future economic implications of Obamacare.
Released by the Fraser Institute, the December 2012 survey of specialists reveals that Canadians are now waiting 17.7 weeks between the referral to a specialist and the delivery of treatment. This is 91% longer than in 1993, when the institute began studying wait times.
In essence, wait times in Canada have doubled in the past 20 years. Sadly, the rationing of care that results in lengthy wait times for patients is a predictable consequence of government interference in the medical system.
- See more at: http://lfb.org/today/a-cure-for-obamacare-from-canada-with-love/#sthash.Zqh8Adkr.dpufecent study on Canadian health care has been released late last year. In it, the authors examine the deleterious effects of socialized medicine on patient wait times and the delivery of care. It offers Americans a revealing glimpse of the future economic implications of Obamacare.
Released by the Fraser Institute, the December 2012 survey of specialists reveals that Canadians are now waiting 17.7 weeks between the referral to a specialist and the delivery of treatment. This is 91% longer than in 1993, when the institute began studying wait times.
In essence, wait times in Canada have doubled in the past 20 years. Sadly, the rationing of care that results in lengthy wait times for patients is a predictable consequence of government interference in the medical system.
- See more at: http://lfb.org/today/a-cure-for-obamacare-from-canada-with-love/#sthash.Zqh8Adkr.dpuf
A recent study on Canadian health care has been released late last year. In it, the authors examine the deleterious effects of socialized medicine on patient wait times and the delivery of care. It offers Americans a revealing glimpse of the future economic implications of Obamacare.
Released by the Fraser Institute, the December 2012 survey of specialists reveals that Canadians are now waiting 17.7 weeks between the referral to a specialist and the delivery of treatment. This is 91% longer than in 1993, when the institute began studying wait times.
In essence, wait times in Canada have doubled in the past 20 years. Sadly, the rationing of care that results in lengthy wait times for patients is a predictable consequence of government interference in the medical system.
- See more at: http://lfb.org/today/a-cure-for-obamacare-from-canada-with-love/#sthash.Zqh8Adkr.dpuf

Friday, August 2, 2013

Another Stupid Idea

Were I still taking politics and economic news seriously, the idea of a $15/ hour minimum wage would sound awful.  I'd say, "how stupid are the people proposing this idea?  Why not make the minimum wage a million dollars an hour instead?  What arguments are there for $15 and not for $1m?"

Of course this idea is stupid and would harm the economy.  And of course the people promoting the idea are stupid and/ or evil.  (see RWC&G on the lying going on to support this stupid idea.)

Instead of being annoyed by the stupidity, my first reaction upon hearing of this idea was to say, "HA! HA! Do it! It'll be hilarious! HA!"

It would be funny to see the unemployment rate shoot up and to see prices rise, while the supporters of this stupidity blame the evil big businesses and 1%.

Before we raise the minimum wage however, it would be nice to know what the actual unemployment and underemployment numbers are.  We obviously cannot believe the government's numbers.  Does anyone know where we can find the actual numbers?

If you do believe in the government's unemployment numbers, do you also support the idea of raising the minimum wage to $1 million per hour?  Would you mind lending me a few grand while we're at it?

Thursday, August 1, 2013

China: A History

by John Keay

This is a great big book on the history of China.

The first point that jumps out at me is the fact that if you are not an emperor, then you'll be almost completely ignored by history.  Even if you are an emperor you'll likely get no more than a mention, unless lots of important stuff happened while you were in charge.

Then again, if we wanted to remember everybody, we'd have no time for anything else.

Another point of interest is that the name we know people by are different from what we think they are.  Confucius was not some guy's name.  His name was Kong.  The way it works "in the East" is family name, then first name or title.  Master Kong is "Kong Master," as in Kong then something approximating "fucius" for "master".  

The first Chinese emperor is known as Qin Shi Huang.  This is a "name" he picked for himself.  (I hear many Chinese pick the name they are known as as an adult, themselves.)  It actually means "first emperor."  It would be like referring to George Washington as "first president," and mentioning him by no other name or title.  First President was born in...  First President was a military officer in the French and Indian wars. First President lead the revolutionary army during the war of independence.

Apparently, the next guy was "second emperor."  And after that other dynasties took charge and changed their naming ideas.

Another interesting note is how much of China's history occurs after around 300 BC.  There is a chapter, or two, before then, but I don't recall anything about the earlier times.

One of the early empires was known as the Han.  Today the largest, numerically, ethnic group is the Han Chinese.

The Han empire was divided by some events into the "Former" and "Later" Han.  One of the most important characters in between the two empires was known as Wang Mang.  He was emperor for a while and wanted to reform the country to make it more prosperous.

He instituted price controls, divided the land equally among the citizens, and so on.

Guess what happened when he improved the lives of the poor by taking land from the wealthy, gave it to the poor, and did things like institute price controls?
A.  Prosperity ensued, Wang Mang was widely admired, and his dynasty lasted hundreds of years.

B. Nothing good, starvation and so on, his line ended with him, and all historians from the time despised him.
If you've visited this blog before, you don't need to be told which was the case.

That is not the only economic fact I found interesting.  A while before 500 AD land ownership was banned and whenever there was a war the citizens fled to wherever there wasn't a war.  Around 500 AD the various emperors determined that they needed to incentiveize staying in place, so they allowed private property to accumulate.  And the book explicitly stated that this was the last time, until Mao that China attempted to progressivize the country.  They seemed to notice that it never turned out well and they avoided much of it for around 1500 years.

Anyway, from my perspective, it seems that the various emperors can be grouped into four parts, in somewhat equal measure: the well meaning, the mean and awful, those with no interest in running an empire, and those who were too young and had regents run things for them, often to take up the title themselves and join one of the first two parts.

The succession of emperors takes up a large part of the book.  Their numbers and even the empires that they ran are too numerous to mention, or even understand after reading such a book.

***

This is a good book.  Even though I'm not as interested in India as I am in China I would read Keay's History of India if I was not already so far behind in my reading.

Recommended for those of you who are interested in lengthy readings on the whole history of China. 

Friday, July 26, 2013

I "Built" a computer

In order to do some work at home I need a more powerful computer than my laptop in order to run AutoCad.  I'm not ready just yet, but I hope to also place adds for per contract AutoCad drawings for whoever wants to pay for them.

"Building" a computer sounds like quite a nerdy thing to do.  But in my defense, I knew almost nothing when I started, and my biggest problem came when I forgot to plug the power cord in. 

It seemed more complicated than I thought that it would be.  I had expected that most of the parts would have advanced to the point where they would be very simply labeled and obvious to plug in.  Maybe they are, but with names like "PCIe" I'm not sure that computer building is as easy as it might be.

In two, or three hours, of over thinking every connection, I had it up and running on my first try, with all connections, that I know of.

I still don't know much of anything about all of the computer parts, so I found some other guy's parts list and approximated his "build" for mine.

My computer's parts were based off of the computer parts from Return of the $750 Gaming PC Build.

Several changes were made, I don't remember them all, but one change was to use this case:



I also watched the following YouTube videos, which helped a lot:

I still know little about computers, but it seemed fairly easy to do.  Some things I learned:
  • Its not "building" its assembling.
  • There are a handful of parts that need to match.
  • A modular power supply, whatever that is, might be preferable to my tangle of unused cables.
  • Hardware assembly is easier than I was led to believe it would be..
  • Cable management is easier than I was led to believe it would be (only the unused excess power cables are a mess).
  • I still know little about computer software, and hope to avoid ever needing to.
  • I've found another place to waste too much money on things like quieter fans.

Can you be right and a nut at the same time?

Race has something to do with it. A lifetime of mixing with East Asians has left me with the impression that the level of nuttiness there is somewhat higher than it is among Europeans. I don’t have much direct experience with blacks, but people who do tell me that high proportions of them believe in something crazy: AIDS is a CIA plot, a mad scientist named Yakub created the white race, O. J. Simpson didn’t kill his wife, etc.

Oh, and all those blacks being murdered in Chicago? Illinois State Rep. Monique Davis says it’s the cops:
There’s some suspicion—and I don’t want to spread this, but I’m just going to tell you what I’ve been hearing—they suspect maybe the police are killing some of these kids.

-Taki's mag

Thursday, July 25, 2013

No time for posting

Fishing and work are filling my time too much this week.  Regularly scheduled programming to continue in a few days.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Politics is a Waste of Time

I used to spend too much time thinking about politics.  I wondered, for example, how incompetent all of our politicians must be since we never have a balanced budget.

But now that I've stopped watching TV, and therefore the news, and stopped exchanging comments with the commenters at the Huffington Post, it seems that I'm more relaxed about the whole subject.

Someone else: "Something happened politically."

Me: "Don't care, but it will be worse than you think it is."


Someone else: "Politician X is an incompetent jerk."

Me: "He's worse than you think, and don't forget about his corruption too."

And that's the extent of my new conversations, and thoughts on politics.


That's not to say government is any less incompetent, corrupt or awful.  I just attempt to spend more time ignoring it.


On the other hand, I just got a speeding ticket.  Who was my alleged victim?  If there is no victim, then why is it a crime?  If its just potential victims, then why not fine me for committing every crime ever?  Potentially, I could commit any or all of them.

And I also grow plants for deer (food plots, fruit and nut trees, etc.).  For this I need fertilizer.  Some places do not sell fertilizer with nitrogen, thanks to laws forbidding it.  How are plants supposed to grow without nitrogen?

And I wonder about how much more difficult it is to create something than it should be.  What are the relevant laws?  Where would I find the relevant laws?  How am I supposed to be productive if i don't even know where I can look to find all the relevant laws?  Maybe they're making everything illegal so that the government can direct our live however they see fit?

Where have I heard a similar idea before?


I still spend too much time thinking about politics, but I only do so now when its forced upon me.

How much better off would we be if the only laws were: don't harm others, fulfill your contractual obligations?

A commenter at Reason.com said he saw a study that concluded that were it not for government interference, the median yearly American income would be north of 300k.  I can't imagine how such a think could be calculated, but I don't doubt we've lost a tremendous amount of prosperity thanks to the government.

Friday, July 19, 2013

One Liners...

...to defeat political arguments.

Obamacare

Keep your laws off my body.

Abortion

Do you ask pregnant women: "how's the fetus?"

Death Penalty

The government can't get anything else right, why would they be competent at killing people.

Stimulus spending

Is there any amount that would have been enough to fix the economy?

School choice

But...I thought you were "pro-choice"...

Border fences

What makes you think such a fence wouldn't end up being used to keep you in and paying taxes?

Gun control

I dare you to put a "gun free zone" sign in front of your house.

Atheism

There is more support of atheism now than in past decades; and our society has gotten...as a result?

Buy Local

What makes you think increased shipping costs is worse than increased production costs?  See: growing citrus in cold climates


This post was a better idea before I started writing it.  Perhaps I'm not in the mood.  Put better lines in the comments.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Quote of the Day, 7/18/2013

Never look at an ugly thing twice.  Its fatally easy to get accustomed to corrupting influences. 

- C.F.A. Voysey

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

RIP my favorite fishing rod

My favorite fishing rod was lost to weeds while trolling a shad rap yesterday afternoon.

A Berkley Lightning rod and Abu Garcia Cardinal reel with which I've caught muskies, walleyes, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, pike, brown trout, rainbow trout, yellow perch, bluegills, pumpkinseeds, rock bass and perhaps a few more species of fish.

Not the greatest spinning rod/reel, but the only one that I have sentimental attachment to. 

The reel that preceded the lost one also caught many fish and now rests in a glass topped box which contains such "treasures" as my first pocket knife, my grandpa's pocket knife, my first fishing hat (which I wore to my first day of kindergarten and last day of high school), my first wallet, the tag for my first buck, and a few other things. 

I had planned on preserving that rod and reel in perhaps a shadow box to commemorate all of the fish it has caught.

I'm now sad, it seemed to always feel like a part of my right arm, and went wherever I went fishing.  My biggest walleye (31") probably came on that rod, and the dozen bass that were caught on my beaver lake Rapala (as opposed to the 10 caught on a combined four other rods) recently came on that rod.  And my first stream trout.  And too many smallmouth bass to count.

A sad day.  All other rods are just things.

Not quite, but nearly, the smallest trout caught on my rod:


Stupid weeds!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Mandated Gun Ownership

How would requiring the ownership of a gun be different from requiring the purchase of healthcare?  Its just a tax if you don't buy one, so why not the other?
The small town of Nelson, Georgia, (pop: 1,300) passed an ordinance in April requiring the head of each household to own a firearm (with exceptions for convicted felons, those not capable of owning a gun, and anyone who conscientiously objected. Despite the exceptions, and that the town’s police chief (and only cop) said he had no intention of enforcing the ordinance, the Brady Center for Gun Violence (an anti-gun more than an anti-violence group) is suing the city over what it calls an “unconstitutional” law.
-reason
from the comments:
The GOP should quietly threaten to pass a mandatory gun law if the Democrats don't repeal ObamaCarousel. Sure, deny it publicly, but make it clear that they'll do it as soon as they have the votes.

What part of the constitution grants the government the power to enact such a regulation?

The same part that says that the government can compel you to purchase a product from a third party.

In my book, the people in a state or a municipality can pass their own local constitution which grants their local government powers which do not conflict with the Federal constitution. Any authority the people have not granted to the local government in such way, the local government should not have.

If government can force you to have fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, and low flow toilets and showerheads why can't they force you to own a firearm?

According to the FedGov, the National Militia includes every able-bodied man between specific ages. Requiring that everyone own a firearm supports this definition of "militia" in a very practical way. Too bad towns are having to do the work that the FedGov just isn't willing to do.

The government can't require people to do something unless there's some plausible argument that it serves a legitimate government objective, Perry said. While deterring crime could be considered a legitimate objective, it would be hard for the city to prove the ordinance accomplishes that goal, he said.

Step 1. Fight this lawsuit and ultimately lose because "it's hard for the city to prove the ordinance accomplishes that goal."

Step 2. Sue Chicago and demand they prove that their "common sense gun control" laws accomplish the goal of reducing gun violence.

Step 3. Sue D.C. and demand they prove that their "common sense gun control" laws accomplish the goal of reducing gun violence.

Rinse-repeat.

Just which Constitutional right does this law violate, again?

Note that this has nothing to do with any of purportedly limited grants of power to the feds, so the Commerce Clause and all that are irrelevant. If this is unconstitutional, it can only be because it violates a Constitutional right. So, which one?

In light of the Obamacare decision, which one indeed?  And why not try it?

Monday, July 15, 2013

'tis amazing wht you can find on them thar intranets



Where could I find a horse about this (holds hands apart) big?

*tweezer glint

Blog Stuff & Meet Up

I'm through with commenting at HP.  Too much time wasted.

But another reason is because I've had too many comments moderated into oblivion.  I'm not sure why with any of them, and this last one was one too many.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

...you don't know anything about fishing.



If you're idea of fishing always includes a bobber...then you don't know anything about fishing.

If your primary rod is a color other than black or grey...then you (most likely) don't know anything about fishing.

If the dominant feature of your reel is a large button...then you don't know anything about fishing.

If you don't own a boat (a canoe counts)...then you don't know anything about fishing.  (Trout fishermen excepted.)

 If your boat says "fish n ski," or similar, on it, then you don't know anything about fishing.

If you don't own more than a half dozen Rapalas...then you don't know anything about fishing.

If you only know how to find fish near weeds...then you know very little about fishing.

If you only know one type of knot...then you don't know anything about fishing.

If your big fish story is about a 20" pike...you don't know anything about fishing.

If you don't know the difference between freshwater and saltwater hooks...then you don't know anything about fishing.

(I do mean this as helpful comments to point out where you should learn more, rather than just criticism.)

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Quote of the Day, 7-9-2013

Guess which issue this comment is about.
Exactly. They can never let the issue go away. Neither side can afford to have the issue go away, really. Both the left and the right have a vested interest in keeping the issue alive and highly contentious, especially for fundraising purposes and to aid voter turnout for their side.

Compromise based on common sense is something neither side really wishes to think about.
And the issue is:  Does it matter?

Monday, July 8, 2013

Observations on the Weekend

I've just added compound bow preparation/ adjustment and baitcasting reel repair to my ever expanding list of skills for which I could make up to minimum wage!

I was in northern Wisconsin and happened pass lots of tourists on the bike trails.  I noticed that all the overweight women were alone, and all the average or thin ones had family around.

Why've so many former fishing towns become t-shirt and ice cream selling tourist destinations?

Why would anyone drive for hours to hike/ bike some stupid trails?

What's the point of an RV?  "We're going camping, but we've forgotten to bring something, what was it?  Oh yeah. The house."

The trick in fishing is having all of your equipment work, being where the fish are, and being there at the right time.  The right time is generally two weeks ago while you were at work.

There's an art to holding fish for pictures.  Its hard to explain when the fish holder is to happy to listen.

   
Doesn't look like 17", does it?


Friday, July 5, 2013

A Thought and A Link

A thought I've wondered about, from a commenter at reason.com (BOR = Bill of Rights):
The argument was that if you didn't have a BOR, the government might some day say we had no rights. But if you did have a BOR, the courts might some day say those are the only rights we have. So there was a lot of debate about the need for a BOR.

IN the end, both sides were proven right. Without a BOR, I have no doubt we would be like the UK and have no rights. But with one, we are stuck with only those rights the courts think the document protects.
A later commenter came up with the right answer to this question:
I thought we were talking about people who act in good faith. No words, or lack or words, will restrain the type of people you cite.
No amount or arrangement of words would prevent those who seek the government's favor and support from acquiring the same.

***

And a link found courtesy of another commenter:
Real Satanists Want Nothing To Do With Abortion Supporters

***

I haven't actually read a reason.com (or Huffington Post) article in a while, but the reason commenters are quite good. 

See another comment:
The problem is that without a God, it is hard to come up with a source for equality and equal rights. Yes, you can make a case for it, but you are left with making a practical case that it is a good thing. But that puts you down on the level of utilitarians.

The argument you want and need to make is "all men are created equal and have equal rights no matter what the good or bad effects". You want that to be a first principle. That way you are not down arguing on a utilitarian level. That way you can tell fascists and progs to go fuck themselves with their dreams of Utopia, because even Utopia cant' justify breaking a first principle.

But without God or a higher authority, why is that a first principle? That is where the argument gets tough because progs and fascists come back and say "but equality is a first principle".

Thursday, July 4, 2013

How are we different from a police state?

And what can be done about it?
According to the Charlottesville Daily Progress, shortly after 10 p.m. on April 11, the 20-year-old U.Va. student bought ice cream, cookie dough and a carton of LaCroix sparkling water from the Harris Teeter grocery store at the popular Barracks Road Shopping Center. In the parking lot, a half-dozen men and a woman approached her car, flashing some kind of badges. One jumped on the hood. Another drew a gun. Others started trying to break the windows.

Daly understandably panicked. With her roommate in the passenger seat yelling “Go, go, go!” Daly drove off, hoping to reach the nearest police station. The women dialed 911. Then a vehicle with lights and sirens pulled them over, and the situation clarified: The persons who had swarmed Daly’s vehicle were plainclothes agents of the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control. The agents had thought the sparkling water was a 12-pack of beer.

Did the ABC’s enforcers apologize? Not in the slightest. They charged Daly with three felonies: two for assaulting an officer (her vehicle had grazed two agents; neither was hurt) and one for eluding the police. Last week, the commonwealth’s attorney dropped the charges.

The agents’ excessive display of force is outrageously disproportionate to the offense they mistakenly thought they witnessed: an underage purchase of alcohol. But in a sense, Daly got off easy. A couple weeks after her ordeal, a 61-year-old man in Tennessee was killed when the police executed a drug raid on the wrong house. A few weeks later, in another wrong-house raid, police officers killed a dog belonging to an Army veteran. These are not isolated incidents; for more information, visit the interactive map at www.cato.org/raidmap.

-reason

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Quote of the Day, 7-3-2013

I sometimes have to wonder if it wouldn't be better to be living in some much more corrupt country where idiotic shit like this gets ignored or bribed away and things just continue to operate in an otherwise sensible manner. Bureaucrats that you can pay to just fuck off have to be better than ones that will subject you to endless paperwork and who knows what threats of imprisonment or fines. I mean, isn't a fine really just a bribe that doesn't do what a bribe should do, which is make them go away?

-Reason.com commenter

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

How to Catch The World Record Muskie

Many people who fish for muskies spend time thinking about when and where the next world record may be caught.

The first problem with this is we don't know what the biggest muskie ever caught was.  There was an awful lot of lying and cheating in the forties when it came to the biggest muskies ever caught.  Some of those fish were still quite big, and one is still widely recognized as the biggest ever at a little over 69 pounds.  There is much speculation about whether or not that fish is as big as we're told or if Indians speared it or about other problems with it.

The next few biggest fish also have questions about their authenticity.  The 65 pounder caught in the Georgian Bay in Lake Huron in the late eighties has new questions about its genuineness.  And the 61 pounder from the same place in 2000 was not weighed as well as those who care about this record would like.

All this leaves us with, possibly, a 58 pound fish caught in Michigan last year.

I find all of that uninteresting.  (If you find it interesting, you might read A Compendium of Musky Angling History.)

One reason I don't find the subject of the biggest fish interesting is because there are many people attempting to determine the biggest fish by calling everyone liars and cheats.  They may be right, but they're still dicks.

(Another fun subject is the Indian spearing in northern WI.  If I find the pictures of dozens of fish bigger than you'll ever catch that were speared by the indians when the cold blooded fish were too slow to move, then I'll post on it.  They're able to just about kill every fish in a lake, and they've done a fair job of killing off lots of fish.  It'll be another anti-PC post.)

A lot of warm-up, here's the post:

The places where 60+ pound muskies live is likely: the Great lakes, the St. Lawrence River, and there are a handful in several lakes in Northwest Ontario.

(NW Ontario, for those not in the know, is the southwest corner of the province of Ontario.  Northern Ontario seems to be in the middle....)

That's where the biggest fish are.  Then you'll need to consider the size limits on the fish in the various places.

In an attempt to manage the fish population, many have successfully lobbied politicians to put large minimum size limits on muskies.  In many parts of Ontario (which includes NW Ontario and half the great lakes, including the Georgian Bay) the size limit is 54 inches.

In order for a fish to be properly weighed in order to count towards the world record it needs to be killed, and in order to be legally killed it needs to be bigger than the minimum size limit.

This size limit leads us to the interesting situation where the 61 pound fish caught in 2000 was, depending on how it was measured, would have been around 54 inches, and may well have been undersized had it been caught and kept the following year, after the size limit was increased.  Possibly the biggest muskie ever caught was borderline too small to be legally kept!

It seems to me that size limits in excess of 50 inches may just as well be "no kill."
Oh you caught the first legitimate 70 pound muskie ever?  Well its too small to be legally kept. - many muskie activists would like to say
1. laws stink
2. the government is evil
3. people who advocate muskie regulations are no better than the wefare moms demanding stuff from the government

All this leads us to the biggest muskies in the world and the size limits necessary to count towards a really big fish pointing us towards a handful of NW Ontario lakes and the southern half (US side) of the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River.

Much to the dismay of muskie casters, the two ways most likely to hook a really big fish are with live bait and trolling.  (Many of those casters would like nothing better than to ban both.)

Once a giant fish is located live bait is the way to go, but the places where those fish are likely to be are places where there are not a lot of fish.  Lifetimes could be spent in search of one of those big fish and you'll not find one at the speed with which a live bait fishermen covers the water.

This leaves us with trolling in the above mentioned places.

However there are yet more laws to contend with.

Most places allow one line in the water per person.  Because of the way ice fishing works, Wisconsin allows three line per person (where trolling is allowed, and there are new one line trolling places available this year, and laws still suck).  Michigan allows one line per person; Ontario allows one, and I don't know about Ohio, New York, or Minnesota.

More lines in the water means more chances at fish, so if my goal was to catch the biggest muskie ever, I'd troll Lake Superior in Wisconsin territories.  Perhaps also the St. Lawrence in New York waters.

Then we're limited to the fall.  Fish eat lots in the fall to bulk up before a slow winter when they lose lots of weight.  They eat some in the spring and summer, but it is in the fall when the fish are the biggest in these colder climates.

We're now narrowed to trolling Wisconsin waters in Lake Superior, and depending on New York trolling laws, the St. Lawrence River in NY.

The way to troll for muskies is almost certainly the way its done on Lake St. Clair.  Possibly with some modifications.

Finally the subject of the post:

If my goal was to catch the biggest muskie ever, I'd by a boat like the Canadian trollers on Lake St. Clair (the American trollers use smaller boats, I think) rig it like they do there, and I'd troll around Lake Superior in Wisconsin waters.  I'd hire a bunch of people to ride around in the boat with me too, so I could get the maximum number of lines in the water.  I'd want to do this from the middle of September through whenever the season ends or the ice becomes too much.  (Boating in lake Superior in November isn't a great idea.  Just ask the Edmund Fitzgerald and many other large ships.)

The Apostle Islands and any other structure would be where I'd start.

So that's what I'd do, if that was my goal (it isn't) and its time of the year didn't interfere with deer hunting (it does).

I wish you good luck if you want to try it.  I'll pass on the idea for the many, many, many days it would require for even the slightest hope of success.  But I'd travel up there to spend a handful of days trying it out.  It wouldn't be the worst way to spend your time.  Let me know how you do.

tldr: fishing laws suck too, deer > muskies

Monday, July 1, 2013

My 1st Blogiversary!

Its been a year since I started this, my very first blog.

Hooray! Strike up the band!  Bring on the symbols, trumpets and drums! Haul out the dancing girls! ...

...or just go back to doing whatever you were doing before, it won't make any difference. :p

Friday, June 28, 2013

The End is Near and its Going to Be Awesome

by Kevin Williamson

The book talk is on CSPAN's BookTV.  Watch it here.

The last time I saw him on BookTV I thought his book and its subject were interesting but I was disappointed when I read the book.  I may try again becasue this book could be very interesting.

Rather than go through the whole book talk, I'd like to highlight an early comment.

A recent immigrant from Bangladesh works near Kevin's office and he's noted that she has the same cell phone as the POTUS.  He's willing to bet that her children don't go to the same quality of school as the president's kids.

Cell phones and schools, one is run by the government and one is not.  Which is better?  Which is more egalitarian?  Why does anyone want the government to run anything?