Finally, about 3:45 AM I got out of bed and went downstairs with the IR thermometer. Air coming out of the crawlspace did not feel all that cold, and the IR thermometer reported 39 and 36 degrees depending on how I pointed it, so I stopped worrying about it.
Pointing it out the front door, I got three readings: -24, -37, and "Lo", depending on where I aimed it.
This morning at 8:30-ish I went outside to try to get the vehicles started. Mrs. Fungus' car started easily enough, but the Jeep cranked slow and wouldn't kick over. I tried to get the hood open so I could put the charger on it, but could not, even though I did recently lubricate the latches etc. I even got a pair of vice grips, put them on the handle, and pulled as hard as I could. No go.
See, this is when it'd be good to have a block heater. The same block heater I've talked about installing for, oh, TEN YEARS or so. *sigh* Plus side, I guess there's nowhere I really need to go. I just hope the antifreeze in it isn't turning into an ethylene glycol popsicle. Slurpee okay, popsicle no. I would not care to put a new engine into it.
Currently thanking all that's holy for Mom's decision to have a new furnace put in, get new windows, and to have the house sided. That extra layer of insulation is probably what's enabling the furnace to keep up; unlike Og our furnace is shutting off without us having to cover our windows or take other extreme measures.
Even so, there is frost at the corners of the new, energy-efficient double-pane windows. That's f-ing cold right there.
But there's a lot going on besides all this, so let's get to it.
* * *
Virginia's proposed abortion law makes it legal to terminate an unwanted pregnancy after it's no longer a pregnancy. To call the law an "abomination" is to damn it with faint praise.
John C. Wright on it. It really is that bad: if the mother decides she doesn't want the baby even after it is born she has a window of time where she can say so, and the hospital staff must allow the baby to expire.
Francis Porretto discusses it. He makes the point that we were warned, in the 1960s, that this would be the outcome of legalized infanticide as contraception. Naturally the left ridiculed the argument.
You know, it used to be that our society thought of murdering infants as barbaric. Thanks to the left, however, infanticide has been reduced to "a choice", and we can see that there is literally no limit on when they think that "choice" should end.
Then again, the left does not consider human life to be worth anything.
* * *
So, let's look at the latest "hate crime" to hit the news.
Supporting actor from crappy TV series says he was beaten up by white men in ski masks wearing MAGA hats and yelling "Make America great again!" and pouring bleach on him. Problem:
UPDATE: According to CNN, a dozen detectives are working with the FBI and after reviewing many local security camera recordings have so far failed to find a single image of either the attack or the alleged assaulters. Additionally, the police report that Smollett did not report the "MAGA" aspect of the story to them, and that they only heard about it after he went to the press. Hmmm...Reportedly the security camera footage that law enforcement has seen do show the guy walking around on the street.
Hypothesis: he went out at 2 AM during the polar vortex to get some food...and slipped and fell on the ice, cracking a rib and smacking his face. An idea about how to garner sympathy and simultaneously score political points begins to percolate...
Look at this AoSHQ post. There's the stuff about him walking around etc. Apparently he wanted the police to shut off their body cameras after they showed up to take his report.
99 times out of 100, these stories turn out to be hoaxes, self-inflicted one way or another. There's no evidence suggesting this time is any different.
* * *
Speaking of fake stories, Oscar-winning movie is complete fiction. Which is to say, the movie is supposed to be based on actual events, but reportedly it's far enough removed from actual events as to be fictional.
Well, not entirely, as there were people with those names and occupations. But otherwise, fiction. Whcih is not entirely surprising; as Vox himself opines, "These movies are designed to make white people feel good about themselves."
* * *
The potential cure for cancer I talked about in yesterday's post? Karl Denninger reminds us it's a product of white male, patriarchal science.
* * *
Global warming news:
Turns out alligators are adapted to handle freezing temperatures.
Which is totally not necessary for them right now because global warming is real and happening now serious you guys. Winter storms are just weather but whenever it's hot it's because of global warming.
But thermodynamically speaking, if the planet were warming, we should see fewer cold events, not more of them. We should be setting new record high temperatures, not flirting with cold ones. And none of the data support that except for the data that have been "normalized". That data keeps saying "It's the hottest it's ever been!" but the record high temperatures were set decades ago and the record low temperatures keep being either matched or beaten.
* * *
If you are concerned that a picture hanging in a restaurant is "a threat to me and my face and voice" you are a worthless pussy and can safely be ignored.
Short form: douchebag sees a picture in a restaurant of some men, circa 1900s, their faces covered in what is probably coal dust. Because they are white men, douchebag regards this as "blackface" and decides that his prissy little ass is offended by it.
It's not blackface. Blackface is when someone covers his face with black makeup in order to appear black, as in the context of what was once called a "minstrel show". Blackface is white men pretending to be black men for purposes of entertainment or parody. If it were a picture of Al Jolsen from The Jazz Singer or Bing Crosby from the Lincoln's Birthday segment of Holiday Inn, this useless sack of crap might have a point. If it were actually a picture of someone wearing blackface, maybe.
...but when you have a bunch of white men who are covered in coal dust because they were down in a freaking coal mine all day digging up coal, that is not blackface. It's men who finished working and haven't had a shower yet.
If you don't like the picture, don't look at it. If you feel it's a threat to you and your face and voice--if you're that much of a pussy--don't go to the restaurant. But don't pretend that it's somehow a symbol of institutional racism, because it's not.
...[E]mpowering people who are, let's be clear again, pathetic attention-seeking idiots who don't care about the facts and are desperate to find something to be offended about, is horribly destructive to society.Let's face it: Mr. Pussy coming across this image and deciding he's offended by it is not exactly proof of institutional racism. "Oh, but it's like a 'whites only' sign," he whines. It's not. It's not even close.
* * *
It is always so very easy to identify a useful idiot. "The least sexy part of socialism is effective, efficient bureaucratic administration but the project lives or dies based on it."
Oh, so that whole thing about mass murder, gulags, lack of freedom, all of that is somehow sexier than the bureaucratic administration? Is that what you're saying?
Fuckin' dumbass. Learn to code or something.
* * *
Because people are idiots, that's why.
On social media, I constantly see friends and acquaintances flying off to exotic vacations, buying new cars, and eating at fancy restaurants. And I know they make far less money than I do. And, paradoxically, they often complain about living paycheck-to-paycheck, apparently not seeing the obvious connection between their lifestyles and lack of savings. Some of them even purport to be Socialists.They end up living that way because they live on credit cards. Living within your means is better.
Bernie Sanders tweeted that "80% of Americans live paycheck-to-paycheck" as if this was somehow unavoidable; that they were forced to live this way. It's a blatant denial of Free Will. You were fated to be a spendthrift. It's not your fault. You shouldn't have to fix it.
The real hell of it is, socialists think that if they get their way, they'll still have the same amount of disposable income. Government will magically pay for health care and whatever else they want, but their taxes won't go up. It'll just be "the rich"--the always-nebulous "rich"--that pay for it.
Except there's a big problem with that plan: there are far more middle-class than rich. Or poor. Or rich and poor put together, even. The place to generate your tax revenue is there, in the middle, where most of the population is. Sure, you can set up your tax scheme so that the top 5% of income earners pay half the income taxes in the country; but that other half will come from the middle class.
...because if you try to tax the rich any more, they stop earning as much. They can do that; as long as they can pay their bills and enjoy life a bit they can easily handle not really being "rich" in the sense of "earning a lot of money every year". And the rich people have the money to hire accountants and lawyers to help them get through the loopholes in the tax law and legally pay less than they otherwise would.
Not so the middle class.
That's the aim behind Illinois' new governor's tax scheme. Move from a fair, flat tax to a so-called "progressive" tax. Instead of it being, "What did you earn? Send us 4% of that," it becomes the same kind of convoluted, loophole-ridden nonsense that comprises the federal income tax code. Rich people can avoid paying the higher taxes, but the middle class ends up getting socked.
Pritzker's scheme will raise middle-class taxes about $4,000 per year. I'm guessing that the property tax relief he is also promising us will not be nearly big enough to offset that increase. In fact, I've got a $5 bill right here that says there will be no reduction in property taxes; or, if there is, it is wiped out within two years.
It's just as bad at the national level. Increasing taxes on "the rich" won't garner enough to pay the bill for socialism, and so taxes will rise everywhere--and on everyone--else. So these fuckheads who think the government will pick up the tab for their medical care, saving them $1,000 a month on medical insurance? That $1,000 per month will end up paying taxes, and more besides.
But the ultimate point of the article, that people should be more important to us than things--that hit home with me. Because that's the choice I made.
If I had been living elsewhere, my mother would have had to live in an assisted living facility instead of her own home. She couldn't drive; and in the last two years of her life she couldn't even handle the shopping any longer. And she would have hated living in such a place.
Yeah, it means my career basically had to be restarted from zero. I worked a couple of shit jobs and got fired from one and worked hard on rebuilding, and little by little my career has come back. But I'm glad to have been here for my parents, and I wouldn't change that.
* * *
A robotic lawnmower. Roomba is not the first company to do it, though.
* * *
There used to be a crime called "vagrancy" but of course our oh-so-enlightened and progressive society did away with that, which is why you have people crapping in doorways and panhandling and so forth.
* * *
Hypocrisy is a feature of being a Democrat, part 93,407.
* * *
Damn, it's cold. "Tomorrow is forecast to be MUCH WARMER than today." Projected high tomorrow: 1°. Well, that's certainly warmer than -23°, I suppose.
Sunday's projected high? 50°. A mere 73 degrees warmer. Hooray.