SEPTA, the month of brotherly love

All of your end of summer miscellany belongs here.

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93 Responses to SEPTA, the month of brotherly love

    • Fred Stiening says:

      The Village Voice seemed to be the only publication that pointed out Hillary Clinton served on Walmart’s Board of Directors during the early Arkansas years back when she was a Southerner

      • briand75 says:

        No surprise as another leftist publication finds that capitalist success requires quality product and financial integrity.

        The Voice was big when I was in my 20’s. I tried to read the whole thing a number of times, but in the end the only usable material was penned by Hunter Thompson.

        • CC1s121LrBGT says:

          Respectfully disagree, briand75. Of course, Hunter Thompson was brilliant and many of his works are timeless and good reads today….

          But I used to read it for Robert Christgau. Back in those days, there were not many places to go to find out if a new record was any good. Christgau was great at reviewing new music. Even if you didn’t like a particular style of music, you might like his review of it. He was quite good and I still own some of his books on music.

          Unless you were way outside NYC and needed it mailed, The Villiage Voice was free, unlike the Rolling Stone which also had good reviews but they were never free except in the library.

          • briand75 says:

            I loved Gonzo Journalism and was hooked after “Fear and Loathing…” I probably paid for it being in upstate NY, but it was worth it to read Hunter’s musings 🙂

        • Fred Stiening says:

          The guy who bought it owns a radio station and newspaper in Reading PA. His pockets are not deep enough.

          Within limits, I read things that challenge my beliefs. I would rather the left be talking about the triangle shirtwaist fire than threatening Trump’s children

          Peter Barbey is third generation, so he is living in Greenwich village with the little people in his $27 million house

          • CC1s121LrBGT says:

            Here’s a “liberal” cause that you might find you agree with – municipal violations. The bottom line is that poor people are not able to pay municipal fines and end up in prison at a high cost to taxpayers and then are unable to find employment.

            The solution is to offer community service as an option to people that do not have the money to pay small municipal fines.

            John Oliver explains it better than I. Enjoy. It is the type of story that would have appeared in the Villiage Voice of yesteryear.


            BTW- It is an example of why I consider myself a libertarian rather than a conservative.

    • TheChairman says:

      Surprised nobody got hit by a train, at least one perp fell onto the tracks. I notice the law officers only show up after the coast is clear and things are ‘safe’… “when seconds matter, the police are minutes away.”

      It’s always safer (for the SEPTA police) to arrest a lone guy carrying a baby:

      • Fred Stiening says:

        SEPTA says the father evaded the fare, contradicting the Facebook poster, who would have had no way to know unless they were together.

        On the Charlotte Light Rail, failure to have proof of paying the fare is a $50 fine that could result in a class 3 misdemeanor police record. If you pay $50 to CATS, it becomes only a civil infraction. If you want to fight the ticket, it goes on the criminal case docket with the District Attorney and a judge. If you do not show up, another $50 is added to the fine. Paid ridership on CATS is way down.

        So the man in Philly not only evaded the fare, he refused to present an ID which would have allowed him to be cited and be on his way. In Charlotte, chronic fare evaders are treated more harshly than first timers.

        • CC1s121LrBGT says:

          It is clear that the police did that at the Florida High School shooting last February…

          but what hasn’t gotten as much publicity is that they did the same at the Las Vegas shooting last October. The videotapes showing it were quietly released and got next to no press coverage.

        • Fred Stiening says:

          As to any notion that his daughter was traumatized by the experience, consider the lesson that Dad is teaching his children – how to take the system for a free ride.

          • TheChairman says:

            I’m not surprised nobody reported it. That’s the issue in ‘communities’ who view law enforcement as the enemy: “We didn’t see or hear nothin’.”

            My point about the father & baby was that it was not a violent situation, and yet I lost count of the number of police involved in making the arrest. In the other situation they arrived just as the train doors closed, and there were clearly moments of attempted murder caught on video (the guy stomping on another head repeatedly).

            • CC1s121LrBGT says:

              That is right, TheChairman. That kind of head stomping is impossible to defend in court. No jury will buy a claim of self-defense after seeing that video.

  1. Fred Stiening says:

    Charlotte is having its Greek Festival this weekend. It probably has more of an effect on the economy and quality of life than the gay pride festival or the CIAA basketball tournament, but will get minimal coverage.

    Countess is there eating Greek food at the Greek Orthodox church social Hall. Greek immigrants are among the more recent immigrants and are being drawn to Charlotte in significant numbers. She will be taking pictures

  2. Fred Stiening says:

    The SEC is intervening in the iHeart / Clear Channel bankruptcy. Their concern is the company has not been transparent enough on the financial transactions between the subsidiaries, and it seems a deliberate scheme to screw the unsecured debtors, especially those holding debt from before the “going private” transaction that they never consented to. I fully agree with the SEC.

  3. Fred Stiening says:

    How to make a small fortune in radio? Start with a large fortune!

    In the case of Cumulus, buy a cluster of stations in rural Virginia for $7 million in 2004, and sell it in 2018 for $450,000

  4. TheChairman says:

    Today was ‘zero-day’ for us.

    After a long grueling summer, countless hours searching Zillow, and numerous property showings, we finally closed on a house.
    “Thank you sir, may I have another.” 😉

    As some of you may recall, one of our main concerns was ‘wired’ internet service; a requirement which eliminated many properties from our list. Satellite internet was an option, but only if a property was ‘perfect’ in every other aspect. Proximity to goods & services was also a factor… we are both in the 55+ age bracket, and my wife didn’t want to be too isolated.

    Alas, we settled on a less remote location in the lower peninsula, along Lake Huron, between Cheboygan & Rogers City.

    We’ll be surrendering our 50 Mbs high-speed cable internet for a 15 Mbs DSL line (Frontier) at the new place; an acceptable trade-off, all things considered.

    Unlike many of the Great Lakes shorelines –which can be rocky or impassable– the shore in this area is walkable for many miles. That was our #1 criterion. Great Lakes shorelines are in the public trust, whereas most beaches on the inland lakes are private property (riparian rights). A property on the lakefront was not necessary, but we did want at least a view of the water and/or deeded access. Fortunately, we found all three.

    The house sits on a bluff, 25 feet above the lake shore. Currently, Lake Huron & Lake Michigan water levels are near historical highs, so we should regain 20-40 feet of beach when the trend reverses.

    And so, here is our new backyard:

    • CC1s121LrBGT says:

      Absolutely Awesome, TheChairman! Makes me want to kick back and pop open a Vernors. 😉

      When’s the housewarming? I’ll bring the cheese steaks. Parrott, could you bring the Chesapeake Bay blue crabs? lol

    • Fred Stiening says:

      Does it come complete with midge bugs?

      • TheChairman says:

        You bet it does!

        CC & Parrott, you may want to hold off until Fall. 😉

        The sellers are in their 70’s and didn’t do much to clear out the ‘habitat’ and trees over the past 15 years, so that is top priority. As such, tree roots have intruded into the drain-field, so they agreed to a price concession for 1/2 the cost… the field is still functioning, but nowhere near 100%. DEQ already approved replacement (we got estimates & approval during inspection).

        We’ll be removing many deciduous trees (mostly Birch and Maple) to open up the view/air, reduce risk to the house, and improve parking area. That will help with the skeeters, etc.

        Internet at our temporary digs will be shut-off on Monday, so we’ll be off-line next week (scheduled to get DSL on Friday).

  5. TheChairman says:

    … and the shore below (we already spotted our first freighter tonight, all lit up):

  6. Fred Stiening says:

    So Hurricane Florence is pointing right at Charlotte for arrival around Friday. Hurricanes usually turn and go up the coast. People who lived here then remember Hurricane Hugo hitting Charlotte head on. 100 year old trees toppled everywhere which demonstrates how unusual it was. Flooding is the more normal type of damage. While our condos are next to a significant creek, we are on a hill out of the 100 year flood plain. Stay tuned.

    • TheChairman says:

      Will be watching and listening via fake news outlets and sensationalist weather reporters for the next week (until I’m back online)… batten down the hatches!

      Over & out.

      • Fred Stiening says:

        I promise not to say hunkering down.

        About a month ago, our condo property management company cut down many of the trees “too close” to the buildings. It was for foundation reasons – while we regretted losing the shade, in retrospect it could have been a smart move.

        Charlotte is very protective of the city “canopy”, which means the power company can’t trim trees obviously extending over the power lines, which is resulting in frequent power outages.

        The ubiquitous trees and arbor committees telling people what they could or could it do were one of the reasons I wanted to leave Connecticut. It probably is #2 on my list of things I don’t like about Charlotte. #1 is the pevasive alcohol use by the younger people. That may well be a national issue, but North Carolina used to resist the booze business, other than the moonshine up in the mountains.

        • TheChairman says:

          It’s the opposite in northern MI, power companies come in and trim (butcher IMO) any trees which are within 10 feet of their lines… in one case, we just told them to take out the entire tree rather than leave us a hacked up tree.

          Without booze in NC, we wouldn’t have NASCAR. 😉

          Be safe, we’ll be back online next week (hopefully)…

          • CC1s121LrBGT says:

            NJ has a situation in most towns where you can not take out a large tree – even if it is in dangering power lines – without a permit… and of course, you’d have to pay someone to do that after you got permission with your permit.

            The result is a trees overhanging the powerlines everywhere and lots of power outages even compared to locations that get category 5 hurricanes.

            The way it works here is that once there is a power outage, the power company comes and takes care of the tree with their expensive unionized labor at no charge to the offending tree owner – and they pass the cost on to the neighbors via some of the highest electricity costs in the entire USA.

            Other states charge tree or car owners for the cost of restoring outages caused by trees or cars they own that caused the outage – and they have far fewer outages and much lower electric rates.

        • Parrott says:

          Governor Ralph Northam -ham-ham-ham says were in state of emergency. Freaking out at the local china mart, bread and milk sales are ‘Brisk’ according to local news babe ‘Jessica Rabbit’.
          Navy is sending all their ships and subs that can leave out of Norfolk. I guess they will head south.
          Anyhoo Floyd county should get 12 inches of rain when hurricane slams into the Blue Ridge and drops its load. Look out Martinsville, Danville and Stuart.
          Hell, Danville has flooded like three times this summer and spring. I doubt South Boston will be on the maps, anymore after this week.

          Fred, they have been running commercials on the local Roanoke TV stations. Come visit the ‘ nuevo riche’ of Charlotte,’The queen city’ . Great cuisine and micro-breweries out the ying-yang. Drive south on 77 till you smell money!
          ( I added the ‘money’ statement : )
          what are you all going to do with a bunch of mountain hicks from W.VA and VA invading your fare city ?
          Let me know if you see a lot of VA and WVA tags in your fair city.
          ( oh, I’m preparing for bad weather. I am going to get gasoline) I have plenty of ammo & Chunky soup.

          • Fred Stiening says:

            The official NWS cone has the storm stalling around Fayetteville and not getting here until Sunday and then it won’t be much more than strong breezes. I see little chance of it getting to Norfolk unless it suddenly bounces off the coast and goes back over water.

            Based on our personal experiences, if you come here for a visit expect most of the people you bump into working in restaurants and bars to be homosexuals of the exhibitionist type. We had a conversation with a person who works in the medical field, and HIV/AIDS is becoming a factor in many patients they see.

            Walmart gave me a free upgrade from a 16 pack of Rice Crispy marshmallow treats to a box of 40, so I am prepared!

            • Parrott says:

              Awesome ! I have always liked rice crispy’s . My Mom used to make those marshmallow treats for us back in the day.
              Yeah now its supposed to go south along the coast. The conspiracy groups are freaking out , Its being controlled by soros or bezos .
              back after while

    • Fred Stiening says:

      So things suddenly turned ugly. The new track has the center going through South Carolina putting Charlotte on the strong side of the storm. While the landfall has not changed, the “what happens next” is all over the place…parrot looks safe.

      • Fred Stiening says:

        Well, what a difference 8 hours can make

        The models were starting to all diverge, some suggesting it might even go down the coast to Florida. The official cone has it heading South and ripping through central South Carolina and winding up in Columbia SC by early Monday

  7. Fred Stiening says:

    SpaceX launch of Telstar 18 was delayed for an hour, but was flawless. Stage 1 nailed the landing and the satellite is in Geostationary Insertion Orbit ready to make the flight to its final location

  8. Parrott says:

    super mega awesome, Chairman ! 15MBPS isn’t so bad. Way better than 3.0 MBPS dsl !
    Cool place. That is a great area, you already know the obvious. I entered a contest once to win a trip on one of those ore freighters, I guess I didn’t win, cause I never heard back. I did win a Kayak over labor day on a raffel. So this ought to be wild.

    That’s a good area to be in when the ‘balloon’ goes up. Gosh, I bet you can see zillions of stars ( Real ones in the sky at night) !

    CC, yeah I’ll go get blue crabs, no problem. I have a friend in Gloucester Point VA. just across the river from Yorktown. He says they are super easy to catch.

    Lake Huron, wow,

  9. Fred Stiening says:

    A recent WordPress update (the software behind the blog) appears to have removed this sticky post, which why it was not at the top. Hopefully that will stay fixed.

  10. Fred Stiening says:

    How long until the NY Times does a story on the significance of the special election in Texas yesterday to replace a Democrat Texas State Senator?

    I am guessing “when hell freezes over”

  11. Fred Stiening says:

    Big Brother Apple added a new feature in ios12 – “screen time”. It allows the nominal owner of a device to monitor and limit the time a person uses an app and when. You can turn off the display, but feel certain the data is still being gathered and sent somewhere. By default, it is turned on after the upgrade. When I looked at the results, all I saw was the two minutes spent in settings turning it off.

    Apple has decided that Apple Watch customers want the device to incorporate an EKG monitor to detect irregular heartbeats. IOS14 is rumored to incorporate a sexual arousal meter using the patented AppleCodpiece that will automatically administer corrective shock therapy.

  12. Parrott says:

    I saw in the Charlotte Observer that Dollar Tree is closing the Family Dollar headquarters in Matthews NC. I didn’t know that Dollar Tree bought Family dollar.
    I never understood the ‘Dollar Tree’ thing. It is really a ‘china-mart’. At least Family dollar tried to be a ‘store’ .
    900 people losing their jobs there in Matthews.
    Bought some shoes over the weekend. They were not nike !

    • Fred Stiening says:

      Matthews was also the headquarters of Harris Teeter, the long standing grocery store chain started in Charlotte. It was acquired by Kroger with the statement that nothing would change, but Countess has noticed a serious plummet in the customer service level.

      I think I wrote a long time ago about the predatory nature of dollar stores and how they take advantage of people who don’t think through costs. It is the same notion as packaging an item as “only 100 calories”to get you paying $8 a pound for Oreos and thinking they are a diet food.

      • Fred Stiening says:

        Countess chatted with the local Harris Teeter store manager and the manager was frank that Kroger’s has totally screwed up the store.

        Despite being right across the street, I never shopped there. I guess it took Countess a while to understand why. Yesterday, I got an order of groceries delivered from Food Lion using Instacart. We regularly get food delivered by Shipt and have had food delivered by the Amazon/Whole Food service. Postmates delivers the Walmart orders. Doordash will be glad to get food from restaurants.

        An occasional $10 fee really makes the expense of owning a car look questionable. Uber or Lyft can get me to a doctor appointment, or the library. We have no useful public transit, but it doesn’t matter

        • CC1s121LrBGT says:

          As Countess many know, Pennsylvania used to pay for part of the cost of taxi rides for its senior citizens (rather than do what NJ does and have empty buses roaming the streets giving free rides for seniors to go to and from shopping or the town’s senior center). Other states may have similar programs.

  13. CC1s121LrBGT says:

    “Michael Savage’s Show To Go To 1 Hour For Radio, 1 Hour For Podcast/Radio In January; Ben Shapiro Adds 2 Live Radio Hours”

    • Fred Stiening says:

      No surprise that Savage is portraying doing a podcast as being his innovation that will transform radio. Next he will claim Tom Leykis and Adam Carolla stole the idea from him

      Going back to the Talk Radio Network days, he was only doing two hours live, with the third hour being fake interviews and repeated segments, so this isn’t a big change. If it is being offered to radio, he still has the need to structure the show around a “show clock” to allow breaks for traffic reports and bottom of the hour news. All I think it really means is that hour will not be live and focus more on demonstrating his vast intellect beyond talking about politics, which wears him out

  14. Fred Stiening says:

    Big Arby’s news day.

    Arby’s informed me today they now offer Gyros, including a Greek style.

    A mere moment later I learned Arby’s owners have bought the Sonic chain for a 20% premium.

    Dunkin’ Donuts is losing “donuts” in its name

    Has anyone ever noticed Krispy Kreme doesn’t make a crispy anything?

    The world is turning upside down.

    • TheChairman says:

      “The world is turning upside down.”

      I wouldn’t know, having been off-line for 3 weeks, suffering info deprivation! Radio was rather unreliable for -factually- correct news, except for ‘AgriTalk’. The hurricane was a meteorological drama event, with facts often misstated by the local/regional news and weather sources. NOAA Radio was more useful.

      May I presume you and Countess weathered the storm and aftermath intact?

      ‘Frontier’ Communications is certainly named correctly; getting a phone line & DSL was like being out on the old frontier… it took 22 days to get service setup.

  15. Fred Stiening says:

    This is old news but I just found it while resuming program testing

    Joyce Riley hosted a program on GCN called The Power Hour, a mixture of politics and religion. She died last year

  16. Fred Stiening says:

    Warren Ballentine has resurfaced on Biz Talk Radio Network. He did a show calling himself “The People’s Attorney”. He lost his syndicated radio job when the Feds indicted him in mortgage fraud. He was accused of being the lawyer of record on mortgages for first time home buyers who were actually house flippers buying multiple houses at the same time. His defense was he knew none of the details of the transactions that he signed off on.

  17. Fred Stiening says:

    Isn’t Brett Kavanaugh emblematic of the swamp President Trump wants to drain?

    Clearly Kavanaugh is an asset of the Bush Family. In his testimony, he mentioned he didn’t move in the same social circles as his accuser – his social contact with girls were confined to the Catholic private schools.

    I have a visceral negative reaction to him, regardless of these sex related allegations. The Supreme Court is way overdue for a WASP to look and think a little more like America. This fight is not the Hill I want to die on.

    I thought it interesting that Lindsey Graham was the one who punted the sex crimes investigator from turning this show into a trial of Mr Kavanaugh. After she was critical of the entire process at the conclusion of interview of the accuser, I frankly was surprised she was going to question Kavanaugh.

    As I remarked to Countess, Kavanaugh did nothing to help himself by his rambling speech. All he needed to say was that he was not at any alleged party and there is no credible evidence that he was, and urge the committee to have a vote immediately.

    With John McCain gone, it will be interesting to watch Senator Graham blossom as his own person.

    • TheChairman says:

      She said, he said. Her story is full of holes and inconsistencies… and he doth protest too much. Regardless, DNC and liberals got what they wanted: delays, drama, controversy, and more division and agitation among the electorate.

      If Kavanaugh is withdrawn, I want Trump to immediately nominate a hard right female, and Grassley/McConnell to schedule the vote before end of October… let the democrat’s choke on it and tell them to pound sand. Play hardball for once.

      • Parrott says:

        Yeah, the only winner in this drama, is Lindsey Graham-ham ham. I hate that I mis-spelled Lindsey’s first name on the SRG current topics.
        McCain must have been abusing Lindsey? Good gosh, he was fired up ! As he should have been , he told Fiensten, Booker, Kamala, D,Durbin, and the senator from Connecticut that watched the movies ‘The Green Berets’, ‘Apocalypse now’, & Full Metal Jacket’ and thought he served in Vietnam, ‘Dufus’
        He drew the wrong memory from his ‘hippo-campus’ .

        What was up with Alyssa Milano photo bombing Judge Kavanaugh ? She’s a nut !
        The democrats really ‘exposed’ themselves as not really knowing anything. What do they stand for? anarchy ? chaos?
        How could a sane person vote for them ?

      • Parrott says:

        How’s the weather this weekend up in MI , Mr Chairman ?
        I saw that there was light snow in Manitoba/western Ontario.
        Have a good one !

    • CC1s121LrBGT says:

      Recall that story that Trump had selected someone else but that Republicans pushed had and convinced him to change his mind at the last minute just before his trip to Finland to meet Putin.

      I believe Trump did a deal with them and agreed to change to the Bush swamp nominee and in return, they would drop their opposition to his firing of Sessions, Rosenstein and Mueller. Recall that last year, they, led by Lindsey Graham, were drafting unConstitutional legislation that would have made it illegal for the President to fire those people that worked for him.

      Shortly after the nomination, Lindsey Graham was on TV saying how the President needed an AG that he can trust and has confidence in…. and Trump had been quiet about Kavanaugh – unlike how he promoted Gorsuch. Only after the absurd claims about Kavanaugh did Trump get back in the mix, particularly after Avenatti got involved with the claim that an adult was attending 10 rape parties with the children. Trump saw an opportunity to discredit Avenatti which also helps him against Avenatti’s other claims against Trump.

      I agree with you – the Supreme Court has over-represented Catholics. The main reason is that many Catholics are Democrats and it has made it easier to get them confirmed. They are picked mainly because recent popes have been against abortion.

      I am not a fan of Kavanaugh. I am concerned with his views on the 4th amendment and warrantless spying against Americans. I have always disliked the Bushes and that also makes it hard for me to keep an open mind regarding him. Having said all that, he has not been treated fairly in this confirmation process.

      • CC1s121LrBGT says:

        As an aside, I believe Trump did the Kavanaugh-nomination / Sessions-firing deal with Congress to protect his son, Don Jr.

        It became clear after the Mueller witness tampering with Paul Manafort and the threatening Manafort until he confessed to a non-crime. Manafort said Trump was part of an “illegal” “campaign contribution” to silence the porn star.

        That made it apparent that Mueller was going to get Manafort to make statements about meeting with the Russians with Don Junior and any statement that Mueller forces Manafort to make that contradicts Don Junior will result in Mueller filing perjury charges against the President’s son.

        By what Mueller’s did to Manafort, Mueller signaled his intentions to charge the President’s son with a crime. That motivated the President to do a deal with the NeverTrumpers in Congress and nominate the Bush swamp guy over his first choice of Judge Thomas Hardiman.

        • Fred Stiening says:

          I am generally in agreement with your theory. The forces within the government have unlimited resources to expend on trying to destroy him. A day or two ago, he ordered US Patriot missiles withdrawn from the middle East, consistent with his clearer statements about our getting involved militarily in the Middle East being a mistake. He is finally pursuing the ideas that gave me some hope that he might work out. But John F Kennedy believed he was in charge of the government establishment and he found out otherwise.

  18. Fred Stiening says:

    The NAB radio show was this week, and statistical realities are kicking in.
    The newer the car, the less likely the driver listens to AM/FM at any time
    The younger the listener, the less time they listen to commercial radio
    Digital assistants (Alexa, Siri, Google Now) are choosing the streams to listen to
    Ad dollars are moving from “over the air” to digital media and most of that is Google.

    • Parrott says:

      you know, basically it is the ‘Listener’ is just trying to get away from ‘Ads’ .
      I bet if FM station didn’t have ads, they would be popular. There is a new one in the area that is playing good 80’s music, very few commercials. I have heard car radio’s playing them at stoplights this summer several times. I bet they are popular, but I noticed more commercials are starting to make their way in.
      Its always that way. They need the Ad income to play music, then the station becomes popular, and they kill themselves with ads
      I saw on the news googlee monster was 20 years old yesterday

      • CC1s121LrBGT says:

        I agree 100%, Parrott. I was happy to pay $1 per day for commercial-free music when I was on the road for hours per day. I am not now and have found a long list of commercial-free music stations that I stream… and some like that Dead Radio that have virtually no commercials. I don’t mind a commercial from time to time but FM stations seem to run them in 5-minute blocks.

        Streaming 0nly stations have virtually no expenses compared to the over the air broadcasters. An internet connection is just a few dollars per day…. and they are able to operate with far less revenue. Offshore stations have particularly low expenses because they don’t have the same onerous music licensing fees that the US imposed to fund the liberal entertainment industry.

        Check out another of my commercial-free favorites – Radio Pepito. I listen to it in my car via my cell phone’s Bluetooth. The website is barebones – it is a low expense operation with no commercials but the music is varied and quite pleasant… and yes it still shows links for your VLC player!

      • Fred Stiening says:

        “Commercial” radio is in a downward spiral. As demand for ads drops, the rates go down. Lower income means they think the solution is to increase the number of ads. I gave up about 5 years ago.

        In most large cities, the NPR News affiliate is significantly drawing more listeners than the highest rated news / talk stations. President Trump is only a piece of the reason.

        The FCC is considering ending the market caps below market #75, and one commissioner even thinks it should only be the top 25. There would still be a limit that one owner not have more than 40% of the market’s ad revenue.

  19. Fred Stiening says:

    So the Secretary of Defense threatened to kill the President’s former press secretary?

  20. Fred Stiening says:

    The final days of Sears / K-Mart

    Amazon / UPS delivered my mini-Fridge yesterday, Made in Canada, Shipped from California, delivered by UPS when expected – delivery MAN gladly put 42 pound box on table. I was able to see 1,100 reviews of people who purchased this over the last 4 years.

    My sister never forgave Sears for cheating her on the sewing machine she bought after college. Fortunately, she left it in sight on a Pittsburgh city street by her inner city school and someone stole it. That ended her one year stint as a teacher trying to help poor children. Even though she was teaching elementary school, she had to deal with students approaching 18 years old. She never talked about it, but I have the sense she may have been sexually assaulted by students. Is it too late to ask the FBI to investigate?

    • Parrott says:

      Killer. She needed a Glock, 43 or 19. The she could have asked them if they wanted “,,,their brains to see the light of day ?”
      I hate that.

      A side note. I still own and regularly use a Sears Kenmore vacuum cleaner. 1990 canister model, and can get the vacuum bags for it at the local wal-mart. It runs like a champ, although, the hose has a section repaired with ‘Gorilla tape’. It still winds up the electric cord automatically. Me and Mrs Parrott bought it when we moved in our first house. It has help these days. There is a rainbow water vacuum around here somewhere. Its like a shopvac, cause it will suck water out of carpet, good if you have pets !
      There is a Panasonic vacuum here somewhere, good for steps and automobiles.
      The latest edition is a ‘Shark’. Its here in the office/dining room, I havn’t taken it out of the box yet, our first upright. It will be started up tomorrow. Supposed to good for hardwood floors and tile. we’ll see if any last as long as Kenmore.

      • TheChairman says:

        The department stores should have paid more attention to a few key groups: kids, yuppies, and the internet. As a kid, I saw the writing on the wall for Montgomery Ward: poor toy selection, dirty stores. As a yuppie (1990’s) I preferred J.C. Penney, as Sears was simply not updating stores, and also resting on their laurels with Craftsman and other brands, which increasingly were of Chinese manufacture and inferior quality. Sears has tried to make a go online (archived manuals and appliance parts), but it’s hard to beat Amazon reviews, pricing, and delivery/return plus other perks of Prime membership.

        J.C. Penney may soon follow Sears. It seems there is an effort to purchase Kenmore separately from Sears. The next battle for survival will take place in the strata of Macy’s, Saks, etc.

        Parrot: I probably have that same Kenmore canister vac, purchased in 1991-92… still runs great, same flaw in hose (duct taped it).
        BTW, weather in MI took a sudden change this past week, 50’s days and expecting first frost next week, leaves are changing. Probably won’t head to AZ until November this year.

        • CC1s121LrBGT says:

          Wasn’t it a Craftsman lawn mower with the “Starts first time, every time” live TV commercials during breaks in 1970s NFL football games on TV?

          Craftsman has been acquired by Stanley Black & Decker so it will exist past Sear’s death.

    • CC1s121LrBGT says:

      Funny you mention the long memory people have.

      Back in the 1960s, one of my brothers used to bicycle to the local WT Grant’s department store and still to this day relates a story about how some old lady used to follow him around on each visit because she was afraid he and his friends were there to shoplift candy or toys. If they were around today, I am sure he would not shop there unless by necessity.

      • Fred Stiening says:

        Is your brother black?

        • CC1s121LrBGT says:

          No. I found it fascinating the first time he mentioned that, and always found it interesting that he still talks about that. The first time he did, I immediately remembered that old lady following me too, and asking if she could help me.

          I always took it as her being nice and trying to be helpful, but he seemed to take it as her not trusting him. To this day, I still think she was a friendly helpful person that liked kids and my brother just didn’t see her the same way.

    • CC1s121LrBGT says:

      “A variance approved Wednesday night includes 18 guidelines, including specifics on the coop for the ducks named Bill and Nibbles.”

      No mention of the offspring of Bill and/or Nibbles, or what happens to the coop once Bill and Nibbles pass on to that Beijing restaurant operator in the sky.

    • Parrott says:

      You know, ducks are amazingly very friendly. Me and my brother had ducks, when we were kids. Mallards. We lived in a rural area in West Virginia with a stream on the property for 3 years.
      They were young ducks, not quite a year old, a drake and hen. They were awesome, their flight feathers were clipped so they couldn’t fly away. We had a very safe pen for them to sleep in at night with heavy chain link fence that my old man got somewhere. A bear couldn’t get to them !
      We had a large dog ( duck house) for them ( heated) in the winter.
      They were awesome. We had to give them back to the Forest Ranger ( original owner ) who had a flock, when we moved to Virginia in ’75.
      Shake a bowl of cracked corn, call their names, and here they would come. Super clean. I wish I had more pics of them. They are not afraid of snakes.
      I agree , ‘therapy duck’. Fenced yard will keep them around, you need a creek though.
      That was a long time ago, they were good.

  21. CC1s121LrBGT says:

    Last day if September, and evidently the last day that “money talks, bullshit walks”.

    Bob Brinker is doing his last “Moneytalk” show right now, after 32 years on the radio.

    • Fred Stiening says:

      Probably sped up by his employer going through bankruptcy.

      According to Wikipedia, he retired to Henderson Nevada. Now he plans to spend his weekends with his family. The three hours a week was just too big of a commitment, but he will continue selling his newsletter

      • Fred Stiening says:

        I worry that Bob might be drawn into [legal] sports gambling in Nevada. That could put a dent in your Critical Mass starship. If you listened carefully, it was pretty obvious he had a TV on tuned to football games while he was doing the Sunday show during football season. He frequently was not even listening to the callers, on those rare Sundays he actually showed up for work. Many caller interactions began with Bob asking callers about their local football teams, not their finances.

        • CC1s121LrBGT says:

          I started listening to him in the winter of 1986. I don’t think I caught his very first national show, but I was within weeks of it. He helped a lot of beginning investors. Back in the 70s, he used to announce college basketball on WHPL-TV 17 in Philadelphia from the Polestra where many teams played.

          From memory, he had career aspirations of being a professional baseball player but wasn’t quite good enough. I point that out because one time about 20 years ago, an old retired baseball player called to ask for advice. Bob started asking about his career and the caller identified himself and they went on for 20 minutes about what a fan he was and some specifics about the man’s baseball career. After about 20 minutes, Bob finally says “It was a pleasure talking with you, thank you very much for the call.” The man replied, “Bob. Bob. Bob! Can’t I ask my question?” lol Bob was very apologetic and you could hear his red face through the radio. Bob had clearly lost himself and forgotten where he was.

          Overall though, I think he did a good service to beginning investors.

          • Fred Stiening says:

            Well, he was meticulous that he understood that offering any tangible advice about individual stocks would put him in legal trouble, making him one of the Radio advice guys to avoid the big house. If you wanted specifics, I think he may have had a subscription newsletter 😋. His advice to buy low cost mutual funds rather individual stocks was generally sound advice.

            • CC1s121LrBGT says:

              It is interesting. In the early years, I remember people calling and mentioning the funds they owned and he would say. Wow, that one has high fees, have you considered no-load.

              In later years, I don’t think he mentioned even mutual funds by name – you had to buy his newsletter for that.

            • Fred Stiening says:

              I specifically remember him mentioning fidelity. I made the mistake of investing in an index based fund and being persueded by a guy on the phone to choose one that was going to be managed to be slightly better. It did much worse than the index and the fund manager left and most people bailed. It ended up being merged into another fund.

              Because of Obamacare, there is a strong disincentive to take out capital gains prior to going on Medicare, so things are just mostly going to stay in place until 2021.

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