Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Good morning, everyone.  Can you believe we have 40F on our patio this morning?? And the official temperature in Chicago is 46F.  And we should get into the low to mid 50s because the skies are clear and we should have plenty of sun today.  Kuma was happy because I let him out on the patio and he had plenty of water from the snow melt.  I don't know what it is but he absolutely loves the water he finds outside.  I thought he might not like the chlorine or whatever in the tap water and gave him the boiled water I prepare for our coffee and tea.  But given the choice he will take the patio puddles first.  The weather person on our local (Chicago) news station had a picture from one of their  'weather watchers' showing a tree in her yard starting to bud.  Poor things--they are simply very confused.  Oh, they also say we had a very minor earthquake just north of Chicago late last night.  We didn't feel anything here although people from southeastern Wisconsin to our area in northwest Indiana called the news stations to report that they had.

This weather story triggered a question because of a story on our local news/weather last night.  The weather person noted that the temperatures in Alaska have been between 10 and 20 degrees below normal at the same time ours have been between 10 and 20 degrees above normal.  And last year when we had a below normal temps and record setting snow falls while they were warmer than normal.  That seems to be a common pattern.  I wondered if there is a similar pattern in Europe

For all the disparagement from Repthuglicans of 'Obamacare,' maybe we should look carefully at 'Repthuglicare.'  Stories like this gives us a glimpse at the mire under the lofty language about 'free market solutions' and 'self sufficiency' in our modern economy and society.  I linked to a story a couple of days ago where one of the victims of the Repthuglican mania for secure IDs for voting said that she felt as if they system had thrown her away by using a catch-22 that prevented her from easily obtaining the required ID.  How many of us are thrown away each year because we can't get health care?

Oh, yeah--everything has been going up, Nicola and Kay.  I know that you depend on Social Security as do Mom and I, Kay.  But the idiots in Washington have told us for the last three years that, because inflation has been so low, our checks have not gone up.  Inflation is low because our economic idiots have cooked the books to remove anything 'volatile' like food, fuel, medical care.  We buy those frequently but the 'core' inflation is calculated based on the those things that aren't so volatile but which are also infrequently purchased--housing, cars, etc.  They have also decided that they should take into consideration the propensity for consumers to purchase lower price substitutes (hamburger instead of steak) when faced with painful price increases.  That keeps the inflation rate also but the real concern is the price increase of both the steak and the hamburger not that the consumer has shifted to hamburger because it still lower than steak.  And that is masked.  Most of our economic statistics have to be taken with a ton of salt because they have been so massaged as to be meaningless.  They simply do not reflect anything in the real world.

Richard Cohen's op-ed for the Washington Post illustrates why I am trying to ignore the Repthuglican primaries.  If I want to see clowns I will wait till the circus comes to town.

A couple of years ago the History Channel presented a series titled 'Life After People' which described how the modern world would fare without if people suddenly disappeared.  On episode detailed how the pythons and boas, released by their owners into the Everglades, would, in relatively short time, become the top predators in the area.  Evidently we don't have to wait till people are gone to find out if the prognostication would come true.  Take a look at this piece on Grist.

I found this by way of undernews.  I wonder if Jourdan Anderson, former slave, ever got an answer from his former master??

1 comment:

Nicola said...

Poppy prefers to drink from the garden pond rather than her bowl. I don't think it is because of the Chlorine as I have tried bottled water for her. I think that the leaves that fall into the pond gives it some sort of flavour that she likes.