Monday, June 30, 2014

News and Science

Or, Science in the news.  Have you heard the news about a driverless car?  Yep, they are working on that.  One company is testing a car that has a steering wheel. You drive it to the road, then put in coordinates and let it take you down the road.  The other car, Google, I think, is making a car that has no steering wheel.  It takes you every where you want to go. Just tell it, electronically, of course, and it will go there. At least that is the premise.  Well, I want one of those.  Surprised?

Well, those of the two or so who actually read this post probably are. Surprised, that is.  Knowing me and my technology knowledge, or lack of it. So having to depend on a car that drives itself with me just putting in some electronically downloaded information is probably a jump for you to comprehend.  Well, maybe more than a jump. Actually a huge leap.  But I am going to tell you why I would like to have this car.

Say, I want something from the store. Never mind the store, just pick one.  Ace hardware, Wal-Mart, the fabric store/quilt shop, well not that one, but some of the others.  Just call them and give them your order, put the coordinates in the car and send it on it's way.  When it gets there, the store employees load it with your order and send it home.  Mean while I can do the important things I want to do. Like read a book, or post a silly blog or something.

Yep, who knows, I may live long enough to see the advent of the Jetsons yet.  Heck, I may even embrace it.  Well, maybe not. 

Monday, June 23, 2014


IF IT WASN'T FOR THE NEWS, I would probably be left to come up with something on my own. But there is the news, and I just have to decide what I want to do with it, if any thing.  So, here goes the next issue of my opinion of what's on the news.

1. A recent news item reported that unemployment has dropped, and is near the point it was at in 2009.  And that the recession was over and had been going over since 2009, the last five years. Right! Right. Not.  Why do I dispute this, you ask?  OK, you didn't ask, but I'll tell ya any way.  At the end of December 2013, Congress stopped the long term unemployment checks to millions of individuals who had been unable to find a job.  Even though this was a news item for a few weeks, it soon lost the interest of Congress and the news media.  And guess what, that also dropped a lot of people from the unemployment numbers. So unemployment went down.  Good for the establishment to report.  Still, there are occasional news reports that there has been a jump in jobs, but they are not a lot and there will also be an occasional report of company's shutting down and laying off employees.  Just a blurb on the news blotter of the day.  Just this morning on the Today show, there was a report of a group of people being called the boomerang generation.  Who are they?  Students who have graduated with a college degree and no jobs to be had, so they "boomerang" or move back in with their parents, cause they have no job and no place to live.  Makes one wonder where all these jobs are that are mentioned on the news, when people can't find jobs and move back with Mommy and Daddy.

2.  There have been several news reports of children left in a hot car and dying in the heat. One father said that he was not guilty of this because his mind was on auto pilot and he just forgot. One suggestion is to leave a diaper bag on the front seat and the cell phone in the back with the child. I say you don't even need to leave the diaper bag in the front. Just leave the cell phone in the back seat with the child and I can assure you there would never be another child left in a hot car. Still, it is beyond me to even understand how a parent can forget he or she has a child in the car. For hours.  If you can't be more aware of your children than that, don't have them. 

3. The State of Utah is getting ready to vote on whether to opt out of Daylight Savings Time. Regardless of your opinion of this irritant, Daylight Savings Time, not Utah, one of the reasons cited for opting out is that ranchers and farmers will have more daylight to get their work done. Wow. Makes one wonder who came up with that gem. The sun comes up and the sun goes down and it matters not what time the hands on the clock point to.  The daylight amounts to the same amount of hours regardless of what the clock says.  Must have been a politician who works by the clock and spends little time out in the sun.

4. And this last little gem.  From an advertisement, not the news.  Rust o leum is advertising a product called Never wet.   As there ad goes, imagine a surface getting rained on and not getting wet.  I live in the Southwest and we are in an extreme drought and have been for several years. I am having a hard time imagining a surface getting rained on. And if we ever do get rained on, I sincerely hope we do get wet. I actually have seen rain, but it would be nice if it would rain soon so some of the young people could see it before they are grown and have to try to explain it to their children. It might be difficult to explain something they are not familiar with.


Monday, June 16, 2014


1. Did you see on the news the other day where a Wal-Mart truck driver went to sleep and hit some people and killed then in a traffic accident back east.  Where is the out rage?  Oh! there was some, but it was against truck drivers.  Isn't it odd?  When someone kills someone else with a gun, it's the guns fault, but when a truck driver kills some one with a truck it's the drivers fault.  Maybe we need to just get rid of Wal-Mart.   Just a thought. About the oddity about guns and trucks.  Wal-Mart an option.

2. I read the other day in the Ogden, Utah paper about an experiment going on in Texas. Dow chemical is experimenting with planting trees to help with air pollution.  What a novel idea, doncha think? I say that sour castically.  I thought it was common knowledge that trees help keep the air clean.  While I support the logging industry, I disagree with the "need" of developers to get rid of all trees when they build houses.  Go Dow.

3.  I saw a face book post that said Taylor Swift was leaving Country music and going Pop.  Well, Duh.  I got news fer ya.  She never was country. Not even on her best day. All I can say is this is a win for country and well, I hope pop embraces her and her monotone voice.  Nuff said. 

4. And finally. This was not a news item. I stopped at a local Service Station, ( does any one call gas stations that any more?) to buy a local paper. A man in front of me had won the whopping sum of $14.00 on a lottery ticket and while I waited for the clerk to take my 50 cents for the paper, this man spent his winnings buying more lottery tickets. A series of them. I finally put my 50 cents on the counter and walked out. I have no clue if he won again, but I wholly doubt it. Wonder why he didn't just buy UH $4.00 worth of tickets, if he had to have more and pocket the 10.  At least he wouldn't be quite so far in the hole.  An if any of you think the occasional win is a win, if you constantly buy lottery tickets, there is no way you will ever actually "win".  The lottery just ain't designed that way.


Monday, June 9, 2014


THE NEWS IS A WEALTH OF INFORMATION:  And if I wanted to spend more time than I already do, I could write a new post about every day on something that strikes me in some way, just from the news. So, I will just comment on a few things here and see what comes up in the next few days that might appeal to my sense of what ever it is that makes me voice my opinion.

1.  Did you see the news article about the judge in Florida getting into a fight with a defendant? Yep, happened, according to the news.  And the judge made the challenge to the defendant and took off his robes and said, lets go outside and fight.  Well, I really paraphrased this, but that is the gist of what happened.  according to the news.  What the news didn't really get into is just what brought all this about. I am sure there is a lot of background information that brought this to a head if I was ambitious enough to do some research.  But I'm not, so just take it for what was reported and say.......on to # 2.  That is number 2, not hashtag 2.

2. Next item that caught my attention. In California a man was hired by the Post Office to trim some trees by their office.  Why? Cause birds were sitting, or roosting in the branches and, um, making a mess on the vehicles parked below. So, the man trimmed the trees, and during the process a birds nest was disturbed and the baby birds fell and some of them were hurt.  Now the man is in legal trouble for hurting the birds.  Seems it is against the law to hurt a bird while trimming their resting place.  Or maybe it is their birth place. I'll have to say this disturbs me. Not the birds being hurt, but the man being in legal trouble for doing the job that the postal service hired him to do.  Maybe they need to trim their budget and not worry about the trees.  More on that thought in # 3

3. I assume that any one who uses the U.S. Postal Service is aware of the fact that their budget is in the red. There are a lot of reasons being put forth as to why, but most of it centers around e mail for letters and other companies such as UPS delivering larger items. And they are probably correct.  I advocate for stopping Saturday mail service. this has been proposed in the past and shot down. But here is my idea.  I know a postal employee in a medium sized postal office who works 5 days a week. His two days off are Sunday and Tuesday. Others who work in that office, ( and I am assuming in most other postal offices ) are on a similar schedule. If Saturday service was cut out, then every employee could work 5 days a week with Saturday and Sunday off, and eliminate the extra employees that are now required to fill in on the days that employees have scheduled off during the week.  And who really needs to have mail delivery on Saturday anyway?  Really.

4. Well, guess I'll end with a tic rant.  Well, kinda.  Decades ago John F. Kennedy was elected President of the United States. In 1963 he was killed by an assassin's bullet.  Fast forward a few decades and a movie was made of his life. A young college basketball coach took his women basketball team to see the movie. When he ask me if I had seen the movie I told him I had not and did not intend to. He said I should, it was a good movie. Maybe it was, or is. My response to him, however, " I was alive and well when all this happened and had lived through it and did not need to see Hollywood's version of it."  Now, Hillary, you know who, has a book coming out. An autobiography, I guess.  I  have no desire to read it. Maybe I should. And since I have almost, I said almost, learned to never say never, I might read it.  Naw, don't think so. She has political aspirations and I am jumping to confusions and assuming that this book will be mostly true, with her spin on what happened with various events that I have been alive and well and lived through, and I really don't need to read her spin on things to decide whether to vote for her to become President in 2016.  That decision, on my part, has already been made.  And, I am sure there are a lot of books by a lot of authors coming out in the next few days or weeks that will be good reads that will never be mentioned on the news. Or in the news.  Well, I guess thats nuff said for now. 
Hope you feel to express you own opinions on this VIEW FROM THE DITCH BANK

Monday, June 2, 2014


MORE THINGS FROM THE NEWS:  And an opinion or two. A little back ground.  The Southwest is hot and dry and has been for a few years now.  Some areas have had some moisture, but for the most part it is just hot and dry.  So having said that.

1.  A year or two back the city of Albuquerque ask the resident to conserve water because of the dry weather.  And they did.  And now, the city is raising the water rates because the residents are not using enough water to bring in the needed revenue to operate the water department.  Hmmm. go figure

2. The city of Silver City gets some gas tax dollars to pay for city street maintainence. But due to the push for more environmentally friendly cars that use less gas, the city is not getting enough tax money to maintain the city streets. So what is the answer? You guessed it. They want to add a few cents to the price of gas paid in the city so they can have enough money to take care of the streets.

3. And finally, at least for this post.  A few days ago a man in California stabbed some men to death in his apartment, went to a public place and shot some people to death and then ran over some more with his car as he "escaped".  He died during the event.  But the point of this is.  Why is the hue and cry against guns only. He killed people with a knife and a car.  Why not raise an outcry against knives and cars.  The guns didn't kill any one. Not did the knife or the car.  The individual using these three items killed people.  Still, there is a cry against guns. Again.  People have been killing people since centuries before guns were ever invented. Blame the people, not the weapon. Be it knife, gun, club or car.

But, the tics will raise funds on the backs of the people and those against guns will use any argument to regulate them or get rid of them all together.  We as those on whose backs these things take place just need to be ever vigilant.   AND THAT'S THE VIEW FROM THE DITCH BANK.