atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,
atomic_fungus
atomic_fungus

#2181: More on the garbage truck/power line story.

Interesting: it turns out our cleaning lady lives in the house that was closest to the power line knocked out by a garbage truck earlier this month. And so I learned a few new details about the incident.

The collision of truck with power line knocked the transformer right off the pole. That explains the BOOM heard by my neighbor: it's never pretty when a transformer goes down. The transformer leaked, so HazMat had to come out and do a cleanup. (Wait, I thought they got outlawed the use of PCBs in transformers. Then again, perhaps this was an old one.) Our cleaning lady was without power for two days and the cleanup involved replacing some of the soil in her back yard.

Oh--and what was the proximate cause of this little incident?

The guy driving the garbage truck was texting while driving. Being distracted by his phone, he neglected to ensure the bucket lift was all the way retracted, which is why he hit the power line.

He was stuck in that truck for two and a half hours before he could get out safely.

* * *

Paywalls will reduce your on-line readership. People are used to being able to access everything (almost everything) on the Web for free. Most of the time they're not so desperate to read a news story that they're willing to pay a fee for it.

* * *

Well, taxes are going to go up by 25% really soon, then, aren't they? This piece by Phyllis Schlafly contains this quote:
Sen. Kent Conrad, D-N.D., sharpened the focus by asking [CBO director Douglas Elmendorf]: "What's going to be necessary (is) either a 25% increase in taxes or a 20% reduction in spending, or some combination thereof. Is that correct?" Elmendorf replied "yes."
Which alternative--raise taxes by 25% or cut spending by 20%--do you think Democrats will prefer?

And Senator Conrad does not mean "reduce the rate of growth by 20%", by the way. He means reduce the amount actually spent by the federal government by 20%, which is something that has never, never, ever happened.

Government spending always increases. The rate at which it increases may fluctuate, but the total number has never gotten smaller. The next time the federal government actually reduces its outlay of cash year-on-year will be the first time it's ever done so.

* * *

Hispanic Democrats want ObamaCare to apply to illegal aliens too. What the hell? There's absolutely no provision in the ObamaCare law for enforcing the exclusion of illegal aliens from its provisions. The law excludes illegal aliens from its provisions but doesn't provide for enforcement of the exclusion.

And, WTF, thanks to the Arizona brouhaha we're seeing that the federal government can just choose not to enforce its own immigration laws, and sue a state for having the unmitigated gall to enforce its own similar immigration laws. Why worry about it, then?

* * *

10-year-old girl was made to watch pr0n and her babysitters having sex.

The mugshots: I cannot tell if the first one is a man or a woman. "Seneca" sounds like a woman's name, but who the hell knows? The comments identify Seneca as "him", though. Whatev.

* * *

Green energy leads to blackouts because you can't schedule wind.

* * *

The cops don't like it if their reports are not the only evidence available. Even before my little incident the other night I thought it wrong for citizens to be charged with crimes for videotaping police.

Okay, Rodney King: what happened to Rodney King was his own fault, for being high and driving and running from police. The police response may have been excessive. It may not have been. What I do know is that American society had a debate about the issue because someone videotaped the action.

Ultimately the officers were found not guilty of any criminal acts. (They were sued by the feds under Bush 41 for "civil rights violations" though I'm not sure how your civil rights are being violated when you try to run from police and then try to fight them after they finally manage to stop you, and they have to subdue you.) But the videotape helped the officers as much as it hurt them, because it showed Rodney King lunging at them.

Lots of police forces have recording devices in police cruisers because they provide a handy source of evidence. The problem is, when one of these devices captures a cop doing something wrong the recordings have this mysterious tendency to get "lost" or "erased", "accidentally".

It should be always completely legal for a citizen to record his interactions with police. The police have the right to record; it's only fair to extend that to the citizen.

* * *

Michelle Malkin today has an excellent piece on the stupidity of the Obama administration ordering the mass closings of auto dealerships.

* * *

It'll be interesting to see what comes from this investigation of the Deepwater Horizon blowout.

* * *

My Aluratek has a FedEx tracking number but its status has not changed since 3 AM. It's being sent via FedEx 2-day and the scheduled arrival date is Friday.

I've waited 45 freakin' days for the thing; you'd think two more wouldn't be such a burden. Cripes.

* * *

Three hundred solar masses. Jesus. I thought my ex was heavy. *rimshot*

This is interesting because it shows us that stars can be about twice as heavy as we originally thought, and the only reason we stop at about 300 solar masses is that we've never found a heavier star than that. Previously we thought 150 was the limit because we'd never found one bigger, and supermassive stars are very rare because they don't last very long.

Most of the matter composed of higher elements in the universe (including you, me, our cars, the Earth, etc) probably came from stars like this. One such star, reaching the end of its truncated life as a supernova, produces about ten solar masses of iron alone. Okay? That's ten solid iron balls each weighing as much as the sun.

You could make a lot of Buicks from one solar mass of iron. You could make a lot of Buicks from one Earth mass of iron. (Look at how many we've made from a tiny fraction of an Earth's mass, and there's still plenty to be found.)

Damn, it's a big universe.

* * *

I needed food, and Mom needed to pick up a few things from the store, so off we went. I decided I'd try KFC's "fill up box". I got the "breast and wing" version, extra-crispy.

It worked.

I didn't even eat the chicken breast; I ate the wing, then filled up on potato wedges and the biscuit. (The cats got bits of the breading from the wing. Now they're sleeping somewhere.) Those damn potato wedges--if they're fresh--are good. And they sell Pepsi instead of Coke.

I like KFC.

* * *

With the changes I've made to the configuration of the fans in the house--and cleaning the returns as well as I could--I've managed to reduce the temperature of my room by two whole degrees.

The most efficient fan got put next to the sofa, blowing cool air down the hallway. That's probably the main reason it's cooler in here. But I also closed the returns (upper and lower) at the east end of the hall, so only the upper return at the west end is open.

I wish I could put a duct into that return from somewhere near the ceiling in my room, but that would involve tearing out a lot of drywall which would then have to be replaced and painted, and I'm no good at carpentry.

Anyway, it's better than it has been.

OTOH I could probably go into the crawlspace and add onto the return duct, and then do something similar to what was done when the upper returns were installed. And a lower return would help in wintertime, too.

That idea bears some thinking about. Heck, any swinging dick can cut a hole in drywall. It's putting in new drywall and mudding it and sanding it which takes a modicum of skill I don't have.

* * *

Heard of "swimming with dolphins"? Well, I just saw something really stupid on TV: swimming with orangutangs.

Argh.

* * *

But how did the whale feel?

* * *

The best punch line to this video would be Obama bowing to various people.

* * *

Apparently Tom Nutsack Vilsack is no longer governor of Iowa. Iowa got lucky when Obama selected him to be Secretary of Agriculture.

* * *

I was looking at Sankaku Channel for any new Yuki Nagato pics and came across some howlers I won't bother to link.

Yuki is slender, not voluptuous. Yet some artists are drawing her with freakin' thunder thighs. I look at the images and laugh because in order for the image to be correct one thigh would have to mass as much as everything above hip level. It's ludicrous.

These are images which--otherwise--are professional in their accomplishment. It's just that these people need to learn about proportions.

...but I'm not about to go on a long rant about art.

* * *

Via Bash.org:
< BrknCodes > We all remember the KFC "Hillary Meal"---two small breasts and two big thighs.
< BrknCodes > Now, KFC has announced an addition to their chicken dinners.....
< BrknCodes > It's called the Obama Cabinet Bucket.
< BrknCodes > It consists of nothing but left wings and assholes.
Heh.
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