Monosyllabic Pedantry

Friday, January 30, 2009

Cute Beagle Pic

From last summer:

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I'm not feeling stimulated

Anybody with two working synapses knows that the "Economic Stimulus Package" is nothing more than a truckload of Democrat pork. There's little point in me restating the inanity of it. Here's a link if you choose to keep up:

Read the stimulus

On a funnier note, Mrs Schwartz is looking for work and sent me this email:

It's just that i tried so HARD today to get a job. I'm just so frustrated.

I guess these are hard times indeed.

Thank goodness for obama. I just looked out in the yard and there isn't any money from the sky yet...but I think it will be here soon! I'll keep you posted.

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Monday, January 26, 2009

The Democrats' "Screw You, America" Stimulus plan

Just Some of the Economic Stimulus Bill
By Jamie Dupree @ January 24, 2009 2:51 PM Permalink | Comments (8) | TrackBacks (0)
What follows are a number of the spending projects included in the economic stimulus bill filed by Democrats late on Friday, which will be voted on in coming days by the House of Representatives.

This is not a complete list.

Here is a sampling of what we found:

$44 million for construction, repair and improvements at US Department of Agriculture facilties

$209 million for work on deferred maintenance at Agricultural Research Service facilities

$245 million for maintaining and modernizing the IT system of the Farm Service Agency

$175 million to buy and restore floodplain easements for flood prevention

$50 million for "Watershed Rehabilitation"

$1.1 billion for rural community facilities direct loans

$2 billion for rural business and industry guaranteed loans

$2.7 billion for rural water and waste dispoal direct loans

$22.1 billion for rural housing insurance fund loans

$2.8 billion for loans to spur rural broadband

$150 million for emergency food assistance

$50 million for regional economic development commissions

$1 billion for "Periodic Censuses and Programs"

$350 million for State Broadband Data and Development Grants

$1.8 billion for Rural Broadband Deployment Grants

$1 billion for Rural Wireless Deployment Grants

$650 million for Digital-to-Analog Converter Box Program

$100 million for "Scientific and Technical Research and Services" at the National Institute of Standards And Technology

$30 million for necessary expenses of the "Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership"

$300 million for a competitive construction grant program for research science buildings

$400 million for "habitat restoration and mitigation activities" at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

$600 million for "accelerating satellite development and acquisition"

$140 million for "climate data modeling"

$3 billion for state and local law enforcement grants

$1 billion for "Community Oriented Policing Services"

$250 million for "accelerating the development of the tier 1 set of Earth science climate research missions recommended by the National Academies Decadal Survey."

$50 million for repairs to NASA facilities from storm damage

$300 million for "Major Research Insrumentation program" (science)

$200 million for "academic research facilities modernization"

$100 million for "Education and Human Resources"

$400 million for "Major Research Equipment and Facilities Construction"

$4.5 billion to make military facilities more energy efficient

$1.5 billion for Army Operation and Maintenance fund

$624 million for Navy Operation and Maintenance

$128 million for Marine Corps Operation and Maintenance

$1.23 billion for Air Force Operation and Maintenance

$454 million to "Defense Health Program"

$110 million for Army Reserve Operation and Maintenance

$62 million for Navy Reserve Operation and Maintenance

$45 million for Marine Corps Reserve Operation and Maintenance

$14 million for Air Force Reserve Operation and Maintenance

$302 million for National Guard Operation and Maintenance

$29 million for Air National Guard Operation and Maintenance

$350 million for military energy research and development programs

$2 billion for Army Corps of Engineers "Construction"

$250 million for "Mississippi River and Tributaries"

$2.2 billion for Army Corps "Operation and Maintenance"

$25 million for an Army Corps "Regulatory Program"

$126 million for Interior Department "water reclamation and reuse projects"

$80 million for "rural water projects"

$18.5 billion for "Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy" research in the Department of Energy. That money includes:

$2 billion for development of advanced batteries

$800 million of that is for biomass research and $400 million for geothermal technologies

$1 billion in grants to "institutional entities for energy sustainability and efficiency"

$6.2 billion for the Weatherization Assistance Program

$3.5 billion for Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grants

$3.4 billion for state energy programs

$200 million for expenses to implement energy independence programs

$300 million for expenses to implement Energy efficient appliance rebate programs including the Energy Star program

$400 million for expenses to implement Alternative Fuel Vehicle and Infrastructure Grants to States and Local Governments

$1 billion for expenses necessary for advanced battery manufacturing

$4.5 billion to modernize the nation's electricity grid

$1 billion for the Advanced Battery Loan Guarantee Program

$2.4 billion to demonstrate "carbon capture and sequestration technologies"

$400 million for the Advanced Research Projects Agency (Science)

$500 million for "Defense Environmental Cleanup"

$1 billion for construction and repair of border facilities and land ports of entry

$6 billion for energy efficiency projects on government buildings

$600 million to buy and lease government plug-in and alternative fuel vehicles

$426 million in small business loans

$100 million for "non-intrusive detection technology to be deployed at sea ports of entry

$150 million for repair and construction at land border ports of entry

$500 million for explosive detection systems for aviation security

$150 million for alteration or removal of obstructive bridges

$200 million for FEMA Emergency Food and Shelter program

$325 million for Interior Department road, bridge and trail repair projects

$300 million for road and bridge work in Wildlife Refuges and Fish Hatcheries

$1.7 billion for "critical deferred maintenance" in the National Park System

$200 million to revitalize the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

$100 million for National Park Service Centennial Challenge programs

$200 million for repair of U.S. Geological Survey facilities

$500 million for repair and replacement of schools, jails, roads, bridges, housing and more for Bureau of Indian Affairs

$800 million for Superfund programs

$200 million for leaking underground storage tank cleanup

$8.4 billion in "State and Tribal Assistance Grants"

$650 million in "Capital Improvement and Maintenance" at the Agriculture Dept.

$850 million for "Wildland Fire Management"

$550 million for Indian Health facilties

$150 million for deferred maintenance at the Smithsonian museums

$50 million in grants to fund "arts projects and activities which preserve jobs in the non-profit arts sector threatened by declines in philanthropic and other support during the current economic downturn" through the National Endowment for the Arts

$1.2 billion in grants to states for youth summer jobs programs and other activities

$1 billion for states in dislocated worker employment and training activities

$500 million for the dislocated workers assistance national reserve

$80 million for the enforcement of worker protection laws and regulations related to infrastructure and unemployment insurance investments

$300 million for "construction, rehabilitation and acquisition of Job Corps Centers"

$250 million for public health centers

$1 billion for renovation and repair of health centers

$600 million for nurse, physician and dentist training

$462 million for renovation work at the Centers for Disease Control

$1.5 billion for "National Center for Research Resources"

$500 million for "Buildlings and Facilties" at the National Institutes of Health in suburban Washington, D.C.

$700 million for "comparative effectiveness research" on prescription drugs

$1 billion for Low-Income Home Energy Assistance

$2 billion in Child Care and Development Block Grants for states

$1 billion for Head Start programs

$1.1 billion for Early Head Start programs

$100 million for Social Security research programs

$200 million for "Aging Services Programs"

$2 billion for "Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology"

$430 million for public health/social services emergency funds

$2.3 billion for the Centers for Disease Control for a variety of programs

$5.5 billion in targeted education grants

$5.5 billion in "education finance incentive grants"

$2 billion in "school improvement grants"

$13.6 billion for Individuals with Disabilities Education Act

$250 million for statewide education data systems

$14 billion for school modernization, renovation and repair

$160 million for AmeriCorps grants

$400 million for the construction and costs to establish a new "National Computer Center" for the Social Security Administration

$500 million to improve processing of disability and retirement claims

$920 million for Army housing and child development centers

$350 million for Navy and Marine Corps housing and child development centers

$280 million in Air Force housing and child development centers

$3.75 billion in military hospital and surgery center construction

$140 million in Army National Guard construction projects

$70 million in Air National Guard construction projects

$100 million in Army Reserve construction projects

$30 million in Navy Reserve construction projects

$60 million in Air Force Reserve construction projects

$950 million for VA Medical Facilities

$50 million for repairs for military cemeteries

$120 million for a backup information management facility for the State Department

$98 million for National Cybersecurity Initiative

$3 billion for "Grants-in-Aid for Airports"

$300 million for Indian Reservation roads

$300 million for Amtrak capital needs

$800 million for national railroad assets or infrastructure repairs, upgrades

$5.4 billion in federal transit grants

$2 billion in infrastructure development for subways and commuter railways

$5 billion for public housing capital

$1 billion in competitive housing grants

$2.5 billion for energy efficiency upgrades in public housing

$500 million in Native American Housing Block Grants

$4.1 billion to help communities deal with foreclosed homes

$1.5 billion in homeless prevention activities

$79 billion in education funds for states

Thanks, a lot.

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Monday, January 19, 2009

In other Varmint killing news

We keep the big bag of sunflower seeds in the garage, that we use for the birdfeeders. Some creature has found this stash, torn a hole in the bag and spread seed shells all over the garage.
We couldn't take the chance that the little thief would work his way into the house proper, so I put out a trap. Not knowing if it was a rat or mouse, I decided too much force is better than too little. I bought a big Ol rat trap and set it up next to the bag.
A couple days later, I went into the garage and saw that the trap was moved several feet and there was a little arm stuck in it.
Assuming he didn't already bleed out somewhere, I'm guessing being a three legged rat is not a long term gig.

Sorry for the slow death, Mr Rat.


Sunday, January 18, 2009

I need a pig stick

We have an inexplicable appearance of several dozen large house flies. There are several theories as to where they came from. We've been killing them as quickly as we can,, but they keep coming. It looks like a fly version of JonesTown-the-day-after around here, with fly corpses littering the floor.


Friday, January 16, 2009

Well Done, Sully

I think it's great that there are suddenly a bunch of facebook fanclubs dedicated to Chesley B. "Sully" Sullenberger III. He deserves it.
From what I've read, he's about the first guy in the world that you'd want piloting your plane if there's trouble.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Humbug updated

Let's crank up the Wayback machine and set it for Thursday, December 18th, 2008.

Mrs Schwartz has left town. It's just me and the girls. In my younger days, this might mean crazy nights out on the town. Now, it means quiet nights of watching the movies I want to watch, without babbling commentary. She had left her jeep at the airport, so I had to go and get it. My friend Mike and I headed to Atlanta.
We stopped at a gun shop in Atlanta. I had decided that every woman on my list is getting a Kimber LifeAct. They can't buy it in NY, but it's legal to own. Since they're all a bunch of wusses when it comes to self defense, I figured it is the perfect gift.
While there, we were offered a selection of switch blade and stiletto knives. We asked if they were illegal and they told us that they are legal. Go figure.

What the hell did I do on Friday and Saturday? I don't know. There was a lot of cleaning, a lot of laundry. I got the mail stopped and did some Xmas shopping.

6AM Sunday morning, we are on the road.

The trip is fairly uneventful, except that the girls refused to go to the bathroom, so I have to practically walk them across Virginia. We get into town about 10pm.

Good God!, it's fucking cold!

We arrive in NY and it's 22 degrees out. Sweet Jesus Tap Dancing Christ, it's cold out. What the fuck was I thinking coming here. It was 60 degrees in GA when I left.

We get to Ma Exador's and I'm hoping to just go to sleep. Janet is acting like a freak. The six cats are just too much for her to go to bed. She keeps sneaking out to mess with them, and I'm panicked that she will poop in the house. I have to get her cage off of the roof of the Jeep. It's bars are encased in ice, as it rode up on the roof of the jeep. Since Ma Exador doesn't own a hair dryer, I use an iron to melt the bars free. We get to bed about 1 AM.

Monday, December 22nd:
Ma Exador and I head up into the mountains, to my sister's house, with Janet and Susan. This is a trial run to see if the girls can get along with her dogs; a rottweiler and an irish setter. It doesn't go well. Susan especially, is terrified of the bigger dogs and will not stop barking at them. My sister is also making extra money babysitting neighbors' kids, so there are 4 boys, riding bikes around the island in the kitchen.

Tuesday, December 23rd:
I finally get to see my niece, Harper Lee. I've been fore-warned by Ma Exador that Harper has entered her teen years, and is now brooding, sullen and pessimistic. This is a shock to me since she was the greatest kid in the world last year. Upon seeing her, I immediately see that she is not the bubbling kid I saw last year. She has matured. She's still great; only now she's a great young adult. I give her our Xmas gift today. We want to make sure she gets it, and it pisses off my sister, so double win.

Wednesday, December 24th:
The In-laws' version of Xmas. It's more of the same.

The Canadian Whiskey bottle made a comeback. Last year, the three guys who married into this clan opened it and we each had a shot, then I talked with my spirit guide.

The lamp by the front door still has the label on it, 12 years running



Thursday, December 25th:
Christmas Day. We trade gifts at Ma Exador's house, then head up to my sister's house in Afton. Actually, Afton is the closest trading post. Her house is in the mountains around Afton. There is no cable and no internet access. They heat their home with a wood-burning furnace. (God, I wish I remembered to get a picture of that) Last year, we didn't have that furnace, and there was concern over whether we'd have enough propane to cook the meal and heat the house.
In hindsight, this is the beginning of the end. We usually end the holiday with a visit to my mom's side of the family, which I greatly enjoy. Mrs S was tired and I was having a good time talking with my sister, so we just stayed there and talked until the wee hours. We went straight home.

Friday, December 26th:
We go out to lunch with Harper, and do a little shopping. The entire time, she's a delight to be around.
Mrs Schwartz and I go out for lunch, then I leave her at the VI to meet an old high school friend while I run some errands with the girls and take them for a walk.
After the errands, the girls and I are napping at Ma Exador's. She's asleep too.
Mrs Schwartz calls for a ride home. Remember that the VI is about 300 yards away. I left the dogs while I drive there and back.

Here's where things get bizarro.

We enter the house and Ma Exador is screaming like a mad woman. Janet is in the back yard. Apparently she did something bad while Ma Exador was trying to feed her cats. Ma Exador somehow hurt her finger.

She completely snapped. I won't get into everything she said, but it was bad. She was sick of me, sick of Mrs Schwartz, the dogs, her grandchildren, everybody.

Mrs Schwartz took the dogs out to the Jeep while I went upstairs to pack. We packed up everything. After we'd driven about a mile, we started thinking about where we were going to stay. We suddenly remembered that Mrs Schwartz' aunt lived nearby and she was the only other sane person in her family.
We were there minutes later.

We stayed there a while while we strategized. It's not easy finding a place to stay when you have two Beagles with you. I was ready to begin the drive back to Georgia. Mrs S wanted to get her new phone, which she had left at my sister's.

We started the drive to Afton. By this time, it's getting late. We were almost there, when we decided we'd just sleep in the Jeep and then go to my sister's first thing in the morning.

We pull off the interstate and I park behind a mobile home show lot.

With all the blankets and our body heat, we are plenty warm enough; however, I got absolutely no sleep. I was not meant to fit comfortably in the back of our Jeep.

Mrs Schwartz and the dogs SNORED like CHAINSAWS all night.

Saturday, December 27th:

About 7AM, I started getting things moving for the last leg to my sister's. The roads above Afton are a sheer sheet of ice. The sand truck takes its time getting that far out. As we get to about 200 yards from her house and the Jeep is going no farther. We're spinning tires and drifting sideways. I park in the middle of the road, and we hike it in. Slowly. We can barely walk on this ice. Her driveway is 100 yards long, also a sheet of ice.

We get to within 20 ft of the house, when I hear behind me, THUNK. I turn around to see Mrs Schwartz on her back. She's hit her head so hard on the ice that we're pretty sure she has a concussion.
We get her phone and head to her sister's place. We need to wash and dry pretty much everything since it all get wet the night before.

We get the Jeep packed for the trip. My aunt has invited us to spend the night at her place. She doesn't mind the dogs and it's actually on the way home.
We had a wonderful night there, and I got the first good night's sleep in a week.

Sunday, December 28th:
We're on the road by 6:30. We get in at 10pm. The first thing we notice is an unusual smell. Going into the kitchen, we see this:

It turns out that we had a leak from the upstairs plumbing, which caused a large section of the kitchen ceiling to get waterlogged and fell to the floor. The floor of the kitchen had a puddle covering about half of it.
We did a quick cleanup and went to bed.

Monday, December 29th:
Recovery. I call a few plumbers and get quotes.

Tuesday, December 30th:
We have three plumbers working for the better part of the day. $560 later, we're back up and running.

Now I'm getting quotes for a drywall guy.

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Thursday, January 08, 2009

Woo Hoo!!!!

I got a raise!!!!


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