2013-09-28

Budget Woes...

So, we have one group of people in congress wanting to fund the entire federal budget.... except for DemoCare.

The other group (consisting of mostly Democrats, along with a few RINOs and id10t's), want to fund the entire thing, hoping that DemoCare will be SO bad that the electorate (that's us) will vote the Dem's out.

There is at least one flaw with at scenario.  Has anyone ever seen a program, such as DemoCare, that was ever repealed once the winds of politics changed? ... and no, prohibition doesn't count on a number of points.

Even if DemoCare is so terribly bad, and the Repubs win with nearly 100% of the vote, the problem will be that they most likely won't repeal the entire thing.  They will make some sort of noise about doing so, and then more noise about why they can't - and then they'll fall silent.  Meanwhile DemoCare will remain, still hurting the economy and putting us that much closer to full on socialism.

Meanwhile, I'm already feeling the pain.  I've been told that while the project is funded, it hasn't been funded sufficiently to support a senior software engineer (That's me)

Therefore, beginning Tuesday, October 1, I will be once more, be looking for work.

Why haven't charges been brought and impeachment proceedings begun?

2013-09-27

Friday...

It's Friday and I am glad.  The week will be finished and I can certainly stand to have the days off.  And then the month is finished as well.

The 18yo started at the local JC this week and I think is finally getting a bit of a lesson in the real world (as much as being in a collegiate setting is "real world") because they are having to begin paying for their own school supplies, gas to and from, and a few other items that the 'rents (are they still called that these days?) use to cover.

I actually started "back to school" - sort of.  I am taking a certificate course in biblical studies which is supposed to last for a year.  I'm going to attempt to be a star pupil, though, and finish it quickly, as I want to move on to the next set of courses and once I have this completed, I believe it will help me determine what I will do in retirement - at least part of the time.

Generally speaking, the health is good, although Beautiful has a few issues with her knee (mine seem to be abating) and we both need to trim up and get into better shape.  Hopefully that will happen before next June.  I'm hoping before Christmas.

This week, I ordered a PanDigital eReader - yes, I have a Kindle - but at $40 and it has an SD expansion capability, I think it could come in handy.  Especially since I can use Calibre to manage the books that I have on it - AND on the Kindle.  Once it gets here, I'll do a review.

I want to build an "adapter" that I can attach to my solar battery charger so that I can charge items that have a USB cable using the solar charger.  Once I build that and get it working successfully, I'll make that into a post here as well.

So many ideas, so little time...

2013-09-23

Fundamentals...

Today, since I'm going through a bit of a dry spell, I am going to post something that I wrote nearly 6 years ago.  It still holds true, even though I am approaching my 58th birthday instead of my 52nd one.

So, without further ado ... my thoughts on fundamentals of life...

-----------------------

What's wrong with the world today...

 

As I approached my 52nd birthday, I began to feel, at times, the effects of the stresses of living this modern life.

 

This life that I lead, working in the tech world (I won't even really give it the honorific of calling it “Hi-tech”, because it really isn't all that “hi”), is full of deadlines (odd term, that), changing project boundaries, and alleged life-and-death needs, requests, and requirements.

 

In thinking about it one morning, I came to the conclusion that we have, as a society, managed to get things backwards and in the process, complicate our lives. To the point of stress induced heart attacks, debilitating diseases, and mental illnesses. We suffer from “burn-out” and “break-downs” because we have taken the things that really aren't all that important in life, and made them into life-and-death situations and given ourselves goals and called them “Dead-lines”. And all for what? A software program!? Some sort of product? Perhaps a game in one instance, perhaps a program to help maintain an aircraft in another.

 

True, maintaining an aircraft is important. After all no-one wants it to fall from the sky, however, we've been maintaining aircraft without computer assistance since the Wright brothers! Is it all that important that the program be complete by Wednesday? what if it takes until next week?

 

Sure, there are budgets to consider. But, I for one, would be happy to work for 20% less so I could work in a bit less stressful environment. One where if I decided that I needed a “Mental health day” I wouldn't fear for my job because I was going to be falling behind and cause the project to be late! Heck, I might actually be more productive if this were the case. (in which case, I would be in line for a big raise, right?)

 

When we assign such urgency to things that, in the final analysis, may be important but don't intrinsically carry the gravity of life and death, we lose sight of what does. Our families, our worship, and our health.

 

Part of this “revelation” was due to a new friend that owns a farm. Well, 3 acres, on which goats and chickens are raised. So it's a small farm. It doesn't make much money, and sometimes additional jobs are worked “outside” to help with expenses, but when I visited there, I am reminded of some of the very basics of life.

 

“Such as?”, you ask!

 

Well, such as how we all need a safe environment to grow and live in. How daily chores are almost a necessity for man to feel fulfilled. How life can be boiled down to some very basic things. Food, water, and a purpose. A well defined purpose.

 

The purpose of the animals is to provide food and other things (such as clothing and companionship) for man (and other animals). A very simple formula. Man's purpose on this earth is equally simple, but I think we have lost sight of a few, very important aspects of it. God told Adam and Eve to go forth and multiply, to subdue the earth, and to have dominion over all the creatures in the earth.

 

Now, this is going to sound a bit strange to some who think that conservatives are all about exploiting our natural resources, etc... but! ... I don't think God meant that we should ravage the land, strip it until it's barren, and isn't fertile any longer, but rather, that we should practice good husbandry, cultivating and encouraging (“training”, if you will) the various plants, and animals. Domesticating the earth, yes, but not raping or abusing it in the process, but conserving it. Not simply to leave it unused, but to manage it so it remains productive.

 

Of course, our own free will allows us to be greedy and therefore some will always take advantage of the situation. Usually this is due to shortsightedness.

 

One reason for this is that we lose sight of whose earth this really is. We are but caretakers. Adam was, after all, the first gardener! We should be tending this as if it were the Kings garden and forest, for indeed it is. That isn't to say we aren't supposed to build cities, or harvest wildlife for food, etc... but we need to do so with the idea that it is the Lord's harvest, not ours.

 

Getting back to the original thought that I was expressing, it hit me this morning how basic things become when you work the land. When you care for your farm animals, and your equipment, etc... These are, indeed, life-and-death things. Taking care of hooves, and de-worming, giving inoculations, etc... are all things that will prevent the animals from dieing. maintaining the barn, or wiring it correctly will provide a safe shelter for the animals, so that you will have healthy animals come “harvest time” (be it for meat, or in the case of goats and sheep, the wool). Completing a software program on time, while helping to make things easier for the intended user (to remember, to fix, to invent, to diagnose, etc..) doesn't prevent illness. It requires human intervention to do so.

 

Such a basic thing.

 

Such a fundamental thing – to be working the land. To be that much closer to the Creator – working directly with His creation. To be immersed in tending to those things that He has created directly. The plants, the animals, the earth, the clay.

 

I knew there was a reason I have always wanted to farm. Granted I won't do it on a large scale, but someday, somehow, I will. Just a few acres. And then, I won't work to man's “deadlines”, but to God's.

 

I knew there was a reason I have always enjoyed the outdoors. It is because I feel less removed from the King there. I am reminded of His power, majesty, and finally, His grace towards me. It is as if all of nature is His cathedral, and I have but to say, “Abba, Father” and I know He hears me. He comforts me and imparts His peace to me.

 

As a child of the King, I am allowed to play in my Father's garden. But I must also do my chores and tend to that garden, too.

9-11

9-11

After the day I've had today, it is difficult to come and write something about the day 12 years ago.  And yet, it is a bit fitting.

Tough day at work.

I came home, turned on the Roku and went to Fox.  Watched a few clips about various things, then watched Cavuto editorialize about parked cars and 9/11.

Sadly, no one asked me what we, the American people, should do as a nation to recover and strike back at the terrorists that perpatrated the travesty that was 9/11 upon us.

And even more sadly, no one in a leadership role within or without our government suggested it either.

Personally, I think it would have been more fitting of us as truly American people ... more like sticking a thumb in the eye of those that plotted this henious act ... had we simply celebrated our freedoms as protected by the Constitution to the fullest extent possible.  Purchasing not only firearms and ammunition, but saying to each other in reassurance, "we are NOT going to use this as an opportunity to erode our rights and freedoms away, so no, you cannot have sweeping new powers of survelliance and such"

Now, don't think that I believe we should simply let the terrorists walk on this.  Nay, we should track them down where ever they may be and exact the price that they are required to pay for their deeds.  Nor am I suggesting for a single minute that we "forget" the tragedy of that day.

What I am suggesting, however, is that we do both of those things (remember, and bring to justice) within the confines of the Constitution.

As it is, we have embarked on an extraconstitutional journey that can only end badly.

I am reminded of a great man that once said, and I quote, "Those that are willing to give up essential freedom for temporary safety deserve neither."

And sadly, that is exactly where we are headed.

GRIDX-II

The power goes out. The house goes silent.  Not even the TV works.

EMP? CME? Transformer out?

In Novemeber it might just be GRIDX-II

I can find no eveidence that part or all of the grid will be in "disconnected" or brought down during this excersize, yet I'm sure that the people at Sandy Hook or Boston weren't planning on a real life, live event happening during or shortly after the drills that were going on nearby (or on the actual site), either.

While I haven't research a lot of this information, it would seem to me to be a bit problematic to protest that these are simply coinidences.  Then again, maybe they were. 

All I'm saying is that my family will not be surprised if something goes "wrong" and the power goes out.

The dates for this excersize?  November 13 & 14, 2013. Two weeks before Thanksgiving. 

Hopefully the Turkey will stay frozen that long

 

Random thoughts...

Without a definite idea on what to write today, I am simply going to put up a few items that I have been thinking about lately.

First, the technical side of things:

I've been kicking around the idea of moving the site to a difference CMS.  It would involve a LOT of work, and I'm just not sure the returns would be worth the effort.  I've been thinking about the Magnolia CMS, or simply moving it to the blog software used on the site http://thelodgeatroar.com with some modifications to the software (it's open source), and some major template tweaks.

I've also been kicking around the idea of a couple other informative side boxes for the site, like ammo prices, or news headlines.

Secondly, I've been trying to put together a plan of various steps to take for certain emergencies, what to have on hand, etc... that would be a good starting point outline.  Once I have something - anything - I figure I can put it up here and maybe open the comments up (If I can get the captcha working so the crazy 'bots don't spam the site again)

School has started, for the boy, and college is bearing down quickly for the girl (altho she's sort of ignoring the fact that there's books to buy and fees to pay, etc...) - this should become interesting to watch in the next few days.

 

Apologies

It occurs to me that I have been neglecting the site of late. Specifically for the last couple months.

While not entirely true (I've been working on things in the background because there have been some spam attacks), the public face of this site has fallen into "disrepair" (for want of a better term).

I hope to start remedying that with this post.

It is my goal (even tho it probably won't happen immediately) but it is my goal to post to the site once a day, except Sundays.

I will probably begin with every third day, and work my way up to it, as it can be difficult to come up with subject matter.  But that's the plan.

Please feel free to email me with suggestions for topics, interesting links, etc... I will use as many of them as are appropriate!

Together, let's make this a site worth reading.

Thank you all for your patience as I work through this new paradigm.

Last modified on 2013-09-03 by jhasz