Sunday, November 29, 2015

PREPAREDNESS



"THE THREAT FROM EXTREME WEATHER
                  EVENTS HIGHLIGHTS THE IMPORTANCE
                       OF INVESTING IN PREPAREDNESS."
                                                           Sheri Fink

      There is nothing like a good old fashioned ice storm to shake up we who think we are prepared for about anything.  Well it proves we are not, and if we are not prepared for an ice storm how many other things are we just not able to cope with very well?
      All of the stores make a killing from those who run in for portable 3500 to 5000 watt generators.  Well those little things may keep a refrigerator running and your freezer if you are willing to keep moving extension chords around.  How many know that when you tie a generator into your system you have to throw the main switch off?  If you tie into you house wiring in some way you are feeding current back into the system and a repairman is going to be electrocuted.  Every year there are linemen killed from someone who has no idea what they are doing putting power back into the lines.
     Unless you are a Master or Journeyman electrician you have no business hooking a temporary generator into your house or building.  Also that small generator will not fire up your heat pump.  There is going to be more damage to electronics when last minute fixes are attempted.
      If power outages are common or even if you do not want to go the route of the portable generator under lousy conditions, invest in a permanent generator that carries the whole load for you place.  Yes it is pricy but not as much as defending a legal action for injuring or killing someone.
     Now a generator gives a lot of comfort when the weather is nice and nothing is going wrong and cutting power in your neighborhood.  But even a permanent generator set is not without flaw.  The generator that we have had for 8 years, with only 350 hours on it, decided to throw the bearings or a rod through the oil pan during this last power outage.  So you still have to be prepared for when your preparation plans don't work.
      The word 'prepper' has become a derisive label in some circles.  Those who decide to prepare for the worst are often laughed at or derided.  TV shows have been made about the extreme things some do to be prepared.  Well just look at the film footage about Black Friday.  If people will act stupid and fight for TV's and computer games what do you think it would be like at the grocery store?  A big snow storm finds the shelves cleaned off in a couple of days in the grocery stores.  That is just for things to last a few days.  There are not warehouses in the back of your stores, all stock comes by truck once a week.
      Many still can and put up food and staples like your grandmothers did before the supermarket was created to sell anything you needed.  A household had to have the basics of life put up to last until next garden season and butcher time.  You don't look back and call them silly.
      I remember the story told by the 93 year old ranchers wife up in Wyoming.  Since the paved road to town was 53 miles they went to town only a couple times a year.  When asked about the supplies she lays in when she get to town she replied "I load up on toilet paper and a case of whiskey, if you have that you can get by pretty well".
      We have had to take our planning for problems to a serious level after this ice storm.  We simply said before that we needed to prepare.  And how many things can go wrong?  Think it is time to quit acting like the grass hopper and a little more like the ant.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

TIME, PATIENCE, AND THEN WHAT?


"PATIENCE HAS IT'S LIMITS.
TAKE IT TOO FAR,
                              AND IT'S COWARDICE."
                                                         George Jackson



     I have lived six decades.  Of course to some that makes me a pup and to others it makes me an old fart.  Some would even call me a curmudgeon. I have had a lot of interests and done many things.  I once had a resume made for myself.  When it was finished the woman that put the facts into some sort of order, that would be understandable to anyone considering me for something useful, had one comment to make.  "According to your resume you have led a very impressive life".  My response to that was "yes maybe, but it could also be construed that 'that joker couldn't hold down a job'."
     I have a life long interest in history.  I love knowing what made things happen the way they did.  I know that our fore-fathers and mothers were a whole lot tougher than we are.
     I do also realize that politicians have not changed any in hundreds of years.  I also have a disgust for the way that the press has acted for all the years of our great experiment in freedom having shaded the truth for their particular outlook and opinion.  That is why news reporting cannot be the sole guide for figuring out what happened in history and why.  It is almost certain that the generation that records history has to pass away before the digging can begin to get at the truth.  And then the record can be shaded according to the opinion of the researcher.
     I always loved the statement made by the police detective Joe Friday on the TV show Dragnet.  "Just the facts".  Building history is like a great detective case, you have to build the case.
     Now I can be a patient person.  I have to be.  BUT there is something that bothers me!
     Since I was born in the 1950's I have always heard the term 'DEVELOPING COUNTRY'.  Generally in reference to countries that are at the outset poor.  Many were colonies.  Many have been conquered many times over by aggressors, dictators, and invaders.
     So how long does it take for a 'developing' country to ever get there?  I don't know.  It seems that as a nation we have been helping 'developing countries' forever.  It seems that the powers that be around the world are happy to have a large part of the world as developing.
     As a nation who is first and foremost always there for those who are not achieving success, we are demonized not only by other countries but by those with agendas in our own country.
     Can a developing country ever develop if it is used as a cheap source of labor?  What is so hard about building a society in a developing country into a self sustaining and self respecting country?  Many clich├ęs can be used here.  But I believe that it seems to be the interest of many that ignorance, poverty, and oppression serves their agenda better than prosperity.
     Most of the people of the United States are fed up by politicians, bureaucrats, and lobbyists that keep the money flowing to everywhere in the world and cut the essentials here at home.
      Foreign Aid seems to be a no brainer to be able to get spending under control but it is not allowed to be determined by the congress who gets all the money.  The package is passed whole or not at all.  This is not only wrong but stinks to high heaven.  And both parties are to blame.
     As a student of history I have to go back to the intent of the founding fathers.  In all the annals of history there has not been a group of people who saw so far into the future and tried to provide for and defend against those who would tear down what we so dearly love and enjoy.
     My patience has been pushed too far for members of congress spending a lifetime in office beholding to no one other than who pays the most.  If a true statesman would rise up attempting to take back control and put the country back to the point of where it leads by example, he would be taken down.
     My patience with those who manipulate the education of our people, seek to take control of all aspects of our lives, and replace individual responsibility with rules and regulations, is gone.
     When freedom of speech has been reduced to freedom for you to agree with the correct thought, it is too much.  When freedom to worship is replaced by enforced humanism, it is too much.  When your property and money can be taken by accusation rather than conviction, it is too much.  When you disagree with the point of view of those that are the loudest and that makes you a bigot, it is too much.
     When a group of people repeatedly say that they want to kill and destroy you, your family, and everything you stand for, it is too much.
     As the cartoon once said with one vulture talking to another "PATIENCE MY FOOT, I AM GOING TO KILL SOMETHING."

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

WORDS HAVE MEANING



"THOSE WHO DON'T STUDY HISTORY
               ARE DOOMED TO REPEAT IT.  YET THOSE
 WHO DO STUDY HISTORY
                          ARE DOOMED TO STAND BY HELPLESSLY
                    WHILE EVERYONE ELSE
                   REPEATS IT."
                                          unknown


      The first part of this quote is attributed to several people including Edmund Burke, and George Santayana.  Many others have said it in various forms and is one of my favorite quotes.  Yet I found it in this form in a cartoon.  Picture a depressed historian setting in his study visiting with another speaking these words.  That is how those who have taken words seriously and look past the politically correct feel.
     We have been taught distorted and misconstrued stories even by those who should, and do know better.  Now we have hacks who lecture us their only qualifications being that they are either elected to office or self appointed to 'inform' us as the press.
     The press who was designed by the founders as the fourth unofficial part of our republics government have shirked the constitutional protections that they enjoy and advocate the repeal of other guarantees to others.  And how are future journalists being trained?  Go to the film of the protests of the rioters at the University of Missouri.  Watch the screaming hateful woman calling for "muscle" to remove the reporter from filming the protest.  A professor of journalism at the school.  One who teaches about using the first amendment insisting that it be denied to another.
     Words do matter.  When a government can not call a group what they call themselves.  When they ignore the very words that the people say.  To use misdirection and lies to divert the attention that any thinking person knows is wrong, there is an agenda.
     So many are surprised at what happened in Paris.  Not really, only those who keep perpetuating these politically correct lines and views.  Most of the things that have happened and are happening are no surprise to anyone who actually listens to what is said.  And then see the actions that those who promise to kill us and burn us, it is no surprise.
     One commentator has been listing and predicting everything that has been happening for ten years and the mainline media and political machines have all called him crazy.  Yet no one is admitting that they were wrong and the 'crazy' ones.
     I am reminded of a quote of a comedian "you can't fix stupid".  It is no laughing matter now.  I see this stupidity displayed on a daily basis by people who try to convince you and me that they know more than what we hear and see.
      It is amusing to me setting out here on the hill and when I go somewhere and am recognized all the support that I am getting for my thoughts.  The flack I used to receive has either gone silent or they just give up on scolding me for my opinion.  I see this as a great source of encouragement.  It also gives me a little hope that people when prompted can think for themselves and not get their talking points each morning from a political group.
      It is gratifying for me to hear someone tell me "I don't necessarily agree with you but you made me think.  Thanks.
     Words do matter.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

FAMILY




4

     If you do not know what 4 is then maybe you should watch the local news a little more often.  4 became a sad note in Kansas history last week.  I am tired of the usage of the term "it takes a village".  That phrase does not mean what it purports to.  It is a political term that is used for too many reasons that are not what we as people are.
     We are family; as Kansans, Christians, football fans, supporters of high school athletics.  The loss of such a bright light with so much ahead and so much to give is heart breaking.
     All too often today we hear of young athletes that are injured or lose their life un-expectantly.  The same week a 6th grade football player in practice was running normal training and was taking a break drinking Gatorade.  He was setting on his helmet and just fell forward dead.  There was two soccer players at Winfield that collided, one was flown to Wichita with a head injury and the other taken to a local hospital with a broken leg.
     It is all sad and it is too easy to start ranting and raving about athletics and how these things should not happen.  There is nothing I can say that will give comfort to any of the family or friends.  I can feel bad about the happenings.  I can offer a prayer.
     I go back and remember when I played football and wrestled in school.  Our physical exams consisted of going to the local Doc's.  He would ask "did you walk in?  Are you breathing?  pay the receptionist here is your form."
     I don't know much but as a former EMT I hold the opinion that a simple EKG could find a few of the heart defects that seem to be a large part of the deaths each year.  I know that the KSHSAA should give direction to require better screening.  I know that a school that can justify $600,000 for an Astro Turf field should consider a little better screening of their athletes.
      We can always discuss the shoulda, woulda, coulda's.  But that won't bring back a great kid or help anyone to grieve.
     I have never been to Sharon Springs but feel the loss anyway.  I am proud of all the teams around the state that honored number 4 and all the prayers for him and the friends and family.
     We have to be satisfied that we won't know why these things happen.  We just know we have to come together as family.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

EXPERTS



"HUBRIS AND SCIENCE ARE
INCOMPATIBLE"
                                              Douglas Preston

     The number of experts sometimes amazes me.  Especially concerning how farmers and ranchers manage to feed the world without the indispensable input from experts who never have raised, processed, or produced anything.  The qualifiers for trying to dominate how things are done seems to be just an opinion or mimicking someone else's viewpoint so they can just sound important.  Or cool.
      Special interest groups seem to be forcing themselves into the conversation on just about everything today, whether they know what they are talking about or not. 
      Just think for a minute, who needs and wants the food supply to be the safest, most nutritious, and available possible?  The producers.
      Will an animal thrive on mistreatment, poor nutrition, or mishandling?  No.
      Can a crop thrive on worn out soil or in weed infested fields?  No.
      Can a crop thrive when infested with pests?  No.
      Would you not use every effective treatment for a sick animal to restore it to health?  Yes.
     Would you feed yourself, your family, your friends, or your customers with food you produce that is dangerous, inferior, or substandard?  No.
      When you are sick would you go to the man at the service station for treatment?  No.
     When you are threatened would you call the dentist to come protect you and your family?  No.
      Would you call the Sheriff to send someone out and feed your stock and milk your herd because you are going out of town for a week?  No.
     Would you trust your spiritual well being to the lawyer down on main street?  No.
      So why do you put your faith in McDonald's to dictate how it's beef is grown?  Why would you put your trust in the United Nations to put forth the plan they control how agriculture will work in the future?  Why would you believe the claims of the Sierra Club on climate matters when scientific facts are not produced by them when pressed?  And the climate is being used to determine how your agriculture is going to be permitted to operate in the future?
      Why would you care how a sandwich restaurant tries to dictate how the meat is raised that goes into their product, when their meat is mostly turkey manipulated to imitate the product you ask for?  Why would you allow the EPA take control of the water that runs across your land when they allow California to dry up and agriculture to die, all the while allowing trillions of gallons of water to run into the ocean?
     Would you trust your water to an agency that caused the most toxic spill to foul a pristine river?  As the affected people downstream asked the agency for help and they say that the heavy metals and poisons were "safe for human consumption?"  No.
     Why would you allow the EPA to have a standing SWAT TEAM to enforce rules they formulate, not how the law is written?  Why would you let them have a SWAT TEAM at all?
     When you want to purchase or raise your food organically that is a choice you freely make.  If concerned about the safety of your food that is your right to question.  And a producer who wants his product purchased and consumed by his customers, and his family, will freely do his best.
     It benefits no one to allow poor quality, dangerous, or inferior products to be stamped with the producers name on it.
     Experts are those trained and who are in the field of research and production.  Not the object of a national organization, or international, who clearly have political motives about control and not quality.
     Why would you listen to 'experts' that have no credentials?