Friday, October 21, 2016



We had clouds and rain most of yesterday. When that cleared up we had wind. I did walk out in the gardens to see how things are doing. A couple of weeks ago I put the little blueberry I had kept for the last two years as a house plant on the soil in one of the containers. I plan to sink the container into the ground and mulch it for the winter. I have managed to keep the plant alive but it needs a period of cold weather dormancy to thrive, bloom and (I hope) produce berries. However, keeping the soil pH at a good level for the plant has been a problem. I lost three plants over two years because of that. I hope that keeping it in its own pot that is then sunk into the larger container will give it a micro environment I can control better. Everything else weathered our frost a few days ago well. The seasonal changes haven't hit the gardens with full force yet but that is coming. You can almost feel it.


Nineteen days till that day I refuse to mention again. My self imposed political fast is going pretty well. The benefits include two books (non-political) read, a large doily finished and another started (after I had to pull out all but the foundation ring because of an early mistake), blood pressure down (feels like it anyway), mood definitely improved. I skim the titles and comments on posts and article but I usually pass on to something else. I do make some (very few) exceptions like this one. Everyone needs some humor to lighten the mood.


It is getting near Halloween and this Buzz Feed piece is precious. Go, Girl, go!!!

Mauldin's Outside the Box column has an interesting analysis of the American socio/economic/political situation and it isn't pretty. I am ignoring the minutia of the political season but find some of the articles that cover the broad trends and implications for the future are often very interesting.

I may have to rethink my plan to keep the blueberry plant outside overwinter. I found vigorous new growth on it almost like it thought the season was early spring not the middle of autumn. I am afraid that leaving it outside might kill it.

Found this article on the "sharing economy" on Market Watch. I have said every since Uber and AirBnB came into existence that this has nothing to do with sharing (by any normal definition of the word) and everything to do with business. As I read the piece I recalled histories I read about the "putting out system" of the textile industry in England just before the industry moved to water powered looms and spinning jennies or spinning mules. The cloth merchant bought a quantity of fiber (wool, linen, cotton) and turned it over to a cottager who has a spinning wheel and collected the yarn when spun. Then he took the yarn to another cottager (or left it withe the same one) who had a loom and could weave it into cloth which he picked up later and sold for a nice profit. The only ones who got rich were the putting-out merchants. What does Uber do (or any of the others in this racket) but supply the owner of a car with information about the location of someone who wants to go somewhere so he can pick up that person and deliver them to where ever for a fee from which the company takes a cut. Replace information with "fiber" or "yarn" and car (or lodging) and car owner (or homeowner) with spinster or weaver and you have the same relationship. Where is the "sharing" in either arrangement? I don't see it.


Nothing much of interest on the net today. My bread is rising and will be for another half hour to hour before I can bake it. See you Monday.

Sunday, October 16, 2016


A long piece by Matt Taibi but well worth a read.

I intend that that will be the last link concerning the farce we are calling an election or on politics until after the vote is in. I am incredibly sick of the whole think and absolutely disgusted that the Republican candidate is the best the Party of Lincoln can offer. I am not disgusted with the Democrat but I had hoped for a better discussion of the issues we, the voters, have to use as a basis for deciding who to vote for. I am tuning out for the next three weeks.

Any comments and links I post will be on totally mundane topics.

Thursday, October 13, 2016


Spent yesterday cleaning up and straightening up in our sewing/plant starting room which had  come to resemble a very untidy junk room. Also finished a doily/table-topper, started another and took apart a throw pillow to renew the batting. Even got it put back together.

Anyone else having problems with sites loading this morning? We are. Half of the sites are either slow loading or won't load at all. Irritating!!!!


Didn't do much yesterday except our grocery shopping and fuming at the slow internet.


Every time I think this election cycle can't get any sicker or lower it does. And I am not talking about the stories of women who claim they were actually abused by Trump (as opposed to his "locker room talk"). I am talking about assholes of both genders who think it is a good idea to repeal the 19th Amendment.

It seems the scammers using trying the I.R.S. dodge to scare people into sending money have gotten smarter.  They are sending letters claiming to be from the I.R.S. demanding payment or info.

I keep shaking my head over how spineless the GOP has become.

I agree with most of this article. We have noticed here that the old received wisdom that the elimination of jobs of one type will always be accompanied by the creation of new jobs of another type simply doesn't hold true anymore (if it ever really did). We have also noticed that getting new education and training doesn't necessarily mean jobs that require that education and training will be there when the student finishes the program. How we can "offset" the low pay provided for jobs that have, a the author puts it, high social value is a big question? Especially in societies devoted to our current predatory capitalism.

Monday, October 10, 2016


Again, I didn't watch the town-hall style debate between Donald and Hillary last night. I did see some video of it posted and wondered who had drugged the Donald who seemed to be stalking her around the stage with the most desultory/depressed manner. Evidently I wasn't the only one who thought that. The Archdruidess posted this tweet from last night that says everything that needs to be said.

As for the Repthuglican Party generally, she has another appropriate comment that says all.

Here is a new entry for the "Wow! I never knew that!" file. Ghost/Albino trees.

This is an interesting story. A lesson in how to skew focus group results toward your desired result--in this case that people are either voting Republican or Democrat or are Undecided. That, evidently, was not the case for the CNN focus group where the voters who said they were decided and were voting for a third party were simply erased by new votes where the participants were not allowed a third party option.

Sunday, October 9, 2016



As you can see, I didn't find much to comment on yesterday. I harvested three trays each of lavender and spearmint. I will grind those and put them in jars later today. I hope the weather holds and I can get the lemon balm and peppermint harvested and in the dehydrator as well. Right now the gardens look the usual end of season disheveled and battered. The rains have been hard on the mums I put in for some color. It came down hard enough to nearly break some of the branches. The peppers have produced steadily and a couple so like this cooler weather they are blooming like it was spring. I doubt that will continue much longer as we are not far off our average first frost date. I attended to my indoors rosemary bushes which I have neglected most of the summer. I haven't done much beyond watering them and, at one point, almost left them too long without adequate water. Luckily they are both coming back now so I trimmed dead springs off and pruned the rest.

I haven't said much about the latest Trump kerfuffle. The man has a long track record as a very slimy caricature of a human being and it amuses me no end at how suddenly the GOP stalwarts have discovered it. The Political Wire has a little piece on desperate efforts by the Repthuglican Party to "save" the down-ballot candidates many of whom endorsed Trump thinking to save their sorry asses from the hordes of Trump supporters who might not vote for them if they didn't. Not a one of them had the guts to say "I can't support Trump for (name any of a myriad reasons). If you can't vote for me because of that, so be it." A few waffled and then caved in when the national polls showed Trump even with Clinton. Now that the polls seem to be going the other way and their precious careers might be in jeopardy as more people appear outraged by the newest revelations, they have backtracked and expect us to applaud them for suddenly finding their balls.

I wonder how many of our spineless Repthuglican candidates will meekly put their tails between their legs a recommit to Trump when faced with this kind of scene? This opinion piece from the Daily Kos makes some very good points and reveals why I don't think the latest outrageous obscenity from The Donald will do much good. There are too many who think he "tells it like it is" (including some of my relatives) without defining exactly what "it" and "is" are. In other words, what versions of reality do they think his verbal diarrhea reflects. And why do they think he will deliver on whatever they think he has promised them when he has promised the exact opposite to a different group.

Ask and ye shall receive--in this case an answer to the question I asked in the last paragraph, or rather implied: who would support Trump and why? In some ways I can sympathize with the person the author talked to about her support for Trump. In fact, I note sometime ago that the major fault I found with Clinton was the company she keeps (Wall Street Bankers and the heads of global companies). But I also noted where she put the blame: the Clintons, the Bushes, and the Obamas. Before Trump became the grotesque figure he is, I considered a "protest vote" for either the Libertarians (whose policy statements I find repugnant) or the Greens (who haven't a chance in hell). No longer.

Friday, October 7, 2016


Well, I guess they had their Vice-Presidential debate yesterday. No, I didn't watch. I live in Indiana and I was so glad that Pence wouldn't be running for re-election as governor but I really didn't want to see him inflicted on the rest of the country. I won't link but the stories I have seen so far (unless they are part of the Repthuglican Ministry of Truth) think it was something of a mess in which neither candidate came off well.

Over the last year or so, I have noticed a problem trying to view some of the blogs and alternative sites I normally visit--usually prepper/suvivalist/homesteader sites or Naked Capitalism and other alternative news/economic sites. This little story is intriguing in light of that history. Interesting coincidence--if that is what it was. The timing is more than a little suspicious.


Tom Englehardt has a really good essay with a twist on the place of Donald Trump in American history. In many ways there is really nothing new about Trump. We have seen something of his type before as salesman/conman/huckster. We have even seen them in politics. What we haven't seen is the Donald's appeal to a nihilist strain in American society, the strain that doesn't mind if the loose canon they will vote for would bring the whole edifice crashing down. Most of the time we have wanted change but not catastrophic change. That after all is what Obama's campaign of "Hope and Change" was founded on. Trump's campaign, however, appeals to the notion of "No Hope and Burn-The-Sucker-Down Change."


The New York Times has a long but interesting article asking "What If PTSD Is More Physical Than Psychological?"