Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Good Tuesday to you all.  Our weather has turned cold again--our temperatures won't get above the low 20s.  That after a 50 degree day.  The winds were vicious last night.

Oh, my, but the wind is still vicious.  We just got back from our monthly Senior Circle breakfast and just walking to and from nearly froze our faces.  We are getting some very light snow but it is driven by that wind that is swinging our bird feeders like pendulums. If we get any mail it can wait till tomorrow before I get it.


Wednesday now and a frigid Wednesday it is.  Single digit temps with negative wind chills.  Needless to say we aren't going anywhere.  Lately we have been trying to get out early for a mile or so on the track at the local Y.  But that plan depends on the weather.  The wind yesterday simply took every bit of energy out of us.  We usually split a pot of coffee in the morning and a pot of tea with supper.  When we came home yesterday I fixed a pot of tea to warm us and we badly needed it.  We will see what we want today.

I checked my seed starts this morning and found that all of the lettuce and two of the spinach are peeking their little tips out of the peat plugs.  Good start so far.  I will start another set of lettuce in two weeks.

The news media has suddenly ramped up the talk about the 'sequester.'  I am amazed at the coverage.  The Repthuglicans insist that Obama wanted the sequester so the mess is all his fault.  The Damnocrats insist that the Repthuglicans did it all by themselves.  Hey, Idiots!!  This was a bi-partisan screw-up.  One of the few bi-partisan pieces of legislation that passed that dysfunctional mess in Washington.  The whole thing was a bizarre 'Mexican stand-off with each side holding the fiscal bazooka to the other side's head and automating the triggers to go off at a certain date unless they agreed to some action to disarm the ordnance.  Mutually Assured Destruction worked so well in international diplomacy they thought it had to work domestically.  What a bunch of useless morons!!  I am amazed because none of the talking heads are calling either side on the issue of how we got to where we are.

Interesting, also, how cyber attacks are suddenly a big topic (for the moment at least.)  I have been reading about this issue for the last couple of years.  Only once has anyone noted that the U.S. has been an active player in the game.  It is nice that the Obama administration has 'raised' the issue at 'the highest levels' frequently.  However, most of the discussion fails to make two very important facts.  First, hacking is a highly deniable crime.  A couple of years ago a denial of service attack shut down banks and government offices in Lithuania (I think it was) during a squabble with Russia.  The Lithuanians blamed Russia and Russia denied any complicity.  There was no way to prove that the Russian government was behind the attacks or that the Russian government simply turned a blind eye to unaffiliated Russian hackers or that it was someone else entirely.  Last year I read about two specific attacks on utilities in the U.S.  Again no one could prove where the attack had come from.  The story last fall about a vulnerability in command and control software used in a large percentage of U.S. utility companies was a momentary blip on the non-mailstream news sites.  The second important involves how extremely dependent we are on vulnerable systems.  Think about how SOL (shit out of luck for those who don't remember the acronym) we all would be if our electricity, gas, water, and bank accounts all were knocked out.  We have a gas furnace with an electric fan to push the warm air throughout the house.  Our cookstove, freezer, fridge and lights are electric.  And without the city pumps (electric) to provide pressure we wouldn't get water.  And we use debit cards and ATMs to access our money which is electronic blips on our bank's computers.  When you (personally) depend so totally on such systems you should look at the possibilities of system failure(s) however they might come about and formulate backups and alternates.  When you (as a society) depend so totally on such systems you (as a society) should be considering the consequences and alternatives.  Believe me we have considered our own personal options but it I don't have any faith that our dysfunctional society or its so-called representatives have been, are, or will be able to do the same.

I didn't read all of this article but I know pretty well where it is going.  And I think it is indicative of exactly how deep the bullshit is in this economy.  I read the remark from that managing law partner where he claimed that college graduates were more career oriented and 'weren't in it for the money' and wondered how brainless someone could be.  Hell, yes, college graduates are in in for the money.  They have the student loans to pay off.  But no one asks just how wasteful this system is that requires one to spend a minimum of 4 years and tens of thousands of (usually borrowed) dollars to get a $10/hour job.

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