Category Archive: Uncategorized

Something to think about

Speaking of lying liars and the liars who speak lies, I just ran across this Forbes article about Microsoft lying back in January about how “insecure” Windows 7 is, to scaremonger people into upgrading to Windows 10 lickety-split.  This, despite the fact that Microsoft is committed to extended support for Windows 7 until January 14, 2020.  (Note:  Forbes dislikes ad-blockers, so you’ll have to either give them a one-time pass or use a browser without an ad-blocker.)

I have one machine that auto-updated to Windows 10 about a year ago, and given what I use it for, I intend to roll it back to Windows 7 at some point when I have a clear weekend to run all the Windows Updates it will need for a scratch re-install.  I also have an Intel ComputeStick that came with Windows 10 and (as I understand it) can’t be downgraded.

I don’t like the new interface, even when all the stupid panes are disabled and it goes back to looking more like Windows 7.  I don’t like the fact that configurations you could make easily to the OS configuration in Windows 7 are now hidden away under layers of obfuscation, or simply can’t be made anymore at all.  And I definitely don’t like the privacy approach (which is to say the non-privacy approach) that Microsoft has taken with Windows 10.

The fact that the current generation of processors doesn’t play well with Windows 7 doesn’t really bother me.  I don’t have any machines with current processors 🙂  And well, as long as eBay is around, it won’t be hard to find fast CPUs and motherboards that still support Windows 7.

The boss just suggested that some of the interface problems go away with a cheap add-on called Start10.  For $4.99 it’s worth a try, but I still think that one machine is going back to Windows 7.

Obligatory FTC Disclaimer:  I have no connection to StarDock or the Start10 software.

 

Yes

Today is the real Memorial Day.

Thank you

Thank you to those who made the ultimate sacrifice for home and country.

I don’t give a shit who you are

but if you are the son of a bitch who leaked information about the Manchester Bomber to the press, we will find you and you will die slowly.  Screaming.  Maybe.  If we leave your tongue intact that long.

Or (and more likely, unfortunately), when you’re caught — and you will be — you will for sure spend a great deal of time as a guest of Uncle Sam in one of his Big Houses, paying for your felonious bullshit.

That is the fuck all.

…no, actually it’s not.

You fuckers out there who are actively working to undermine the President of the United States, legally and fairly elected under our fucking Constitution that none of you actually believe in?

You’re next.

Like Charlie says, this is wrong, it’s evil, and it has to stop.  It has to stop now.  I have GRANDCHILDREN.  They are going to grow up in a world free of terrorist assholes and left-wing morons if I have to die to make that happen.

Grow the fuck up.  Stick your soi-disant antifa bullshit up your fascist asses.  If you can’t do that, then get the fuck out of the way and let the grown-ups deal with this.

Now that is the fuck all.

Third anniversary

Still love you. Still miss you.

InComeying!

It’s a beautiful thing. Democrats have been pontificating that they had no confidence in Comey since before the election, claiming he threw it for Trump (doubtful, Hillary was simply a lousy, unlikable candidate who forewent campaigning in states it turned out she really needed), and now they’re all pouty and screaming “Constitutional crisis!” because Trump, who had no confidence in him either, gave Comey the Order of the Boot.

And before you get your panties in a wad, Fucky Chuckie Schumer is on record as saying he lost confidence in him, too. Not that that will save any left-hanging panties from being wadded, but you can’t say I didn’t try to help.

Make up your minds, people. You can’t have it both ways. You already tried that with 43 — either he was dumber than a box of rocks and Cheney was really the power behind the Resolute Desk, or he graduated from Yale and HBS, and flew fighter jets in the Air National Guard. It’s either one or the other, can’t be both.  And signs point to the latter a lot more than they do the former, even if I ended up disgusted with the end game of his administration.

Oh, look. The government is going to do something for me.

So, many, many months (it is actually several years) after the people across the street got their fancy 96-gallon automated trash carts (automated in the sense that the truck is supposed to be able to pull up, grab them, and dump them without human contact — unless perhaps the human is supposed to get out and hook it up; this is unclear and I’ve never seen the process work), we finally were told that we’re supposed to get ours during the second half of this month.

Dear Indianapolis Resident,

The Indianapolis Department of Public Works has partnered with Waste Management to provide residents in your area with a 96-gallon trash cart.  The new cart provides a uniform look to the City’s streets, decreases litter, and makes disposal of trash easier than ever before.

OK, so let’s address the BS here.

The new cart provides a uniform look to the City’s streets,

This is ridiculous.  The carts are on the streets one day per week.  Meanwhile, the City can’t legislate what everyone’s mailbox looks like, or what the front of their house or their front yard looks like, and (around here, anyway) has let the street go so far to shit that so what if we all have the same trash cart.  If that’s a prime reason for doing this, they need to find a better one.

decreases litter,

Really.  They could do that just by telling the fucking garbageman to pick up the shit he drops.

But anyway.

and makes disposal of trash easier than ever before.

Well…probably not.  Because “before” (now), we can dump trash in the can any way we please, bagged or unbagged.  But after we get the new carts (from the DPW FAQ on their website),

Residents must place all trash in a [sic] 10-15 gallon kitchen size bags before placing them in the cart.

Given that we currently throw all of our trash into a 34-gallon bag-lined trash container in the back hall, that’s going to be a major change for us, and we’ll have to buy more bags, at our own expense of course.

Since we’re making it easier for Waste Management to collect trash, I fully expect a decrease in our property taxes, since I’m sure it will cost the city less to pay Waste Management to collect our trash.  (BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA…just kidding.)

Oh, and check this out (again, from the FAQ):

Loads of trash that exceed the capacity of the 96-gallon trash cart may be disposed of at the Marion County Citizens Transfer Station located at 2324 S Belmont Avenue. The transfer station is open every Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. The cost is $2 per car load and $5  per truck load.

Fuck you.  I am like hell driving all the way to the south side to dump household trash, and pay for it to boot.  Oh, and you can get a second cart, but it will cost you $65.

And get this:

Residents can place bags of leaves in their cart with their regular trash or set out 2 bags of leaves/yard waste per month as part of the heavy trash program.

Good thing I stopped bagging my grass, because there’s no way that would be enough space.  At least they are still doing the fall leaf program.

City services aren’t really services anymore.  They force you to do more of the city’s work yourself, pay more property and sales taxes for the privilege, and smile while they take you in the ass again.

Taxing my brain

I keep reading that Trump and Congress need to do something about taxes.

This really isn’t difficult.  You’ve got a majority in both houses, put through a flat tax law that removes all deductions and loopholes, assesses a low and fair tax on every dollar earned by every person working in the US (which I’d like to see no more than 10%, but probably should be about 15%), essentially guts the IRS, and cuts us back down to a three-line postcard for a 1040 if you were a good boy or girl and had the tax withheld at the time you were paid.  (How much you earned, how much tax you paid, and the difference (net income).)  And everyone files as an individual — no more joint returns for marrieds, and thus no more marriage penalty.  Got minor kids who have income?  They file their own (or you file it for them, as their guardian).  Do it all online, no more mailed forms, and for God’s sake, up the website and data security so tight that it squeaks.

I’m tired of all the pissing and bitching about this causing a disproportionate impact on lower-income people.  Fuck that, they probably don’t pay any taxes anyway; almost 50% of the American public has no tax liability, anymore, what with EIC and welfare and all that other bullshit nanny-state crap.

The thing that really gets me, though, is that prior to 1913, nobody saw a need for a personal income tax.  The personal income tax started as a Progressive Era grab for more money to fund the expanding Federal government.  The 16th Amendment was required for this purpose because the Constitution did not actually give the Federal government power to tax individual income.

Before 1913, the government was funded by tariffs, customs duties, and fees levied for specific purposes and services as enacted by Congress.  It wasn’t much money.  We struggled to keep a Navy afloat, and usually drew the Regular Army down to ridiculous levels in peacetime.  Civil servants were paid like shit, and even after the income tax was ratified, for many years they had PX privileges on military bases because they barely made starvation wages.*  The federal government was small and the likelihood that a mere citizen would ever draw its attention or need its services was vanishingly small.

Today, the federal government is swollen with pelf stolen from the citizenry with absolutely no attention paid to the parts of the Constitution that are supposed to inform the federal government that it has no damn business doing most of the things it has arrogated unto itself.  It lays down so many rules for citizens that we have little or no choice but to deal with it in some fashion in nearly every activity of our lives.  Its agents are nosy and intrusive and in many cases have the power to make our lives a living hell, when, as the former blogger Velociman once pungently put it, “No public servant should ever be able to threaten a citizen with anything other than a poor shoe shine.”

There are more federal felonies than you can shake a stick at, plus the stick, and certain eminent attorneys and lawyers have long opined that we probably all commit at least three felonies a day and don’t even know it.

And people wonder how a guy like Donald Trump can be elected president.

The fact is, I’m still wondering why his polls are as high as they are.  And I’m wondering what Paul Ryan is still doing holding onto his Speaker’s gavel, since he can’t manage to get major portions of Trump’s agenda past the rock-ribbed conservatives on his side of the aisle — although I also think those rock-ribbed conservatives need to lighten up.

The one thing I’m sure of is that we didn’t get into this mess overnight.  It’s been happening slowly over the past century plus, and sadly, one of my favorite presidents, Teddy Roosevelt, was just as guilty as all the rest in putting the modern bureaucratic federal state on the rails.  Wilson and Teddy’s illiberal cousin Franklin just ran with the ball, and things got even worse under LBJ in the ’60s.

There are a lot of things that need to be reversed, but it’s going to take time to reverse them, just like it took time to put them into place.

But if you want to kill a monster, one way is to starve it to death.  And a flat tax bringing in less revenue (which it would) is one way to put the monster on a diet.

So why don’t Trump, Ryan, and McConnell get the fuck all over that?  Tell me it’s not because Rand Paul is one of its major proponents.  Not that I think Rand Paul is worth even the proverbial bucket of warm spit, but every clock is right two times a day.  And he’s right about the flat tax.

_______________

* FedCo, or “Federal Employees’ Distributing Company”, was originally started in 1948 by 800 Post Office employees to provide lower-cost household goods to Federal employees and their families, for precisely this reason; federal employees were paid, as I said, like shit.  I actually got to visit a FedCo store back in the early ’80s when I was visiting friends in Los Angeles.  At the time, it was a completely new experience to me, as we didn’t have things like Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club, to say nothing of Costco, in Indianapolis until the 1990’s.  (We had Ayr-Way, which was eventually bought by Target, and K-Mart and so forth, but Wal-Mart was a major game-changer for local department stores when it arrived.)

My mother is absolutely impossible.

Truth.

She wrote us a shitty email tonight.  Since she moved over to the other side of town with my stepfather, into assisted living, she has been an absolute bitch.  Of course, they moved, and two days later my stepfather had a stroke; relatively minor, thankfully, he just came back to the apartment last weekend after several weeks in rehab.  And about two weeks after that, she caused a three-car accident and totaled her car because she shouldn’t fucking be on the road.

So we’ve been handling the insurance shit from that because she doesn’t hear worth a damn on the phone, and of course we’ve had to submit paperwork three times, the latest one on Monday (but picked up Tuesday evening because that’s when UPS picked up from the box we had to leave it in).

So she asks tonight if we have the check from the insurance company, and why haven’t we brought it over, and by the way why did we have it sent here instead of there?  As if we’re hiding it from her or some damn thing, because she also thinks we’re conspiring to prevent her from driving again — which I’d do if I could, in a heartbeat, but I also know I can’t stop her if she insists.

Well, first of all, we just sent the fucking odometer report FOR THE THIRD TIME yesterday.  If they even have it processed and in the system today, I’d be amazed.  So the check isn’t here, and probably won’t be here for several days yet, assuming they don’t find some other reason to slow-roll the payout.  (After which they will probably cancel her, but that’s another concern.)

The reason we have been having everything mailed here is because we don’t want it to get lost over at the home.  Plus, I’m here all day and I’ll be here when UPS or whoever delivers it.  (They seem to really like UPS for some reason.)  I don’t want her damn money.  Frankly I hope she chokes on it.

Then she was bitching about the fact that she has eight boxes of shit sitting in our garage from the apartment and she just knows that things she needs are in them.  She wants to come over and go through them.  I’ve told her she can do that, but I have to work, so she’s going to have to have someone bring her over here and take her home.  She was going to do that last week but she “didn’t feel good” so she called it off.  After I sat home all day waiting for her.

So of course she bitched tonight and insinuated that I should come and get her for that purpose.  Well, fuck that; it’s an hour round-trip over there and back, and I have to work.

And she bitched about other things that she had already been told about and had agreed were settled appropriately.

I’d swear she was getting Alzheimer’s, but it’s not that.  She’s angry about the move (it’s a tiny apartment, but with assisted living, it’s what my stepfather can afford without selling off investments, and I don’t care how old he is, you don’t ever spend the principle if you can help it), she’s pissed off that she doesn’t have a car (and she thinks we’re conspiring to keep it that way), and she’s lashing out at us because we don’t have any good way to tell her to go to hell and stay there at the moment.  The move wasn’t her idea, and wasn’t our idea either; it was my stepfather’s daughter’s decision because he was not getting proper care where they were and going into assisted living there would have been a) more expensive and b) not much of an improvement over what they already had, since that home doesn’t have full-time nursing staff and an on-call doctor.  My stepsister did the intelligent thing and move them to a place where her dad would be well taken care of.  And my mother is pissed because she didn’t have any say — and legally, even though they’re married, she doesn’t.  His health is legally his daughter’s responsibility, not my mother’s.

All I can say is thank God she and Dad waited to have me till they were in their thirties, because if I were ten years older like most of my cousins, I don’t know what I’d be doing right now.  Probably having a heart attack or a stroke of my own because her attitude of “it’s all about me” is really pissing me the fuck off.  She has absolutely no consideration for anyone else at this point.

My wife answered her email, because if I had, the entire response would have read, “Fuck off and die.”

I know my sister reads this occasionally; well, sis, this is what we put up with at home when you’re gone.  She’s not the nice little old lady she acts like when you’re here.  Sorry to say it, but it’s the truth.

Down a little more

-18.2 pounds as of this morning, down to 274.7.

I could wish it were more, but actually, I’m losing at a fairly healthy rate.  It’s been 53 days, so that works out to about a pound every 3 days, or about 2.4 pounds per week.  And that ain’t hay.  According to the CDC, “[E]vidence shows that people who lose weight gradually and steadily (about 1 to 2 pounds per week) are more successful at keeping weight off.”  Which is the same thing Weight Watchers says.

I kind of dread going off the phentermine, but that won’t happen until late May, and by then I hope I can get a diagnosis of ADHD and something to deal with that, which might also help bag the snacking impulse like the phentermine does.  Because that’s why I’m losing weight — I just don’t eat much during the day anymore.

Anyway, so far, so good.

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