Archive for the 'General Stuff' Category
Between December 2011 and January 2012, the number of Americans “not in the labor force” increased by a whopping 1.2 million. That was the largest increase ever in that category for a single month. That is how the federal government is getting the unemployment rate to go down. The government is simply pretending that huge numbers of unemployed Americans don’t want to be part of the labor force anymore. Read more at The Economic Collapse blog.
Check out this webcam at the Birds of Vermont Museum. You can get a taste of winter in northern New England.
Laura Lee is hosting our carnival for baby boomers over at Midlife Crisis Queen.
As a kid growing up in New Jersey I went to the New York World’s Fair a bunch of times. The single exhibit that I remember best is this one: the General Motors self-driving car. I remember seeing a typical American family (whatever that is) playing checkers or something while the car drove itself down the highway. I’ve been waiting 45 years for this invention to come to light. And here they are: Google invented them! The New York Times has a story on it today:
What happens if a police officer wants to pull one of these vehicles over? When it stops at a four-way intersection, would it be too polite to take its turn ahead of aggressive human drivers (or equally polite robots)? What sort of insurance would it need? These and other implications of what Google calls autonomous vehicles were debated by Silicon Valley technologists, legal scholars and government regulators last week at a daylong symposium sponsored by the Law Review and High Tech Law Institute at Santa Clara University.
Over the last two years, Google and automobile makers have been lobbying for legislative changes to permit autonomous vehicles on the nation’s roads. Nevada became the first state to legalize driverless vehicles last year, and similar laws have now been introduced before legislatures in Florida and Hawaii. Several participants at the Santa Clara event said a similar bill would soon be introduced in California.
Does anyone else remember that World’s Fair exhibit?
Last year at this time, I cursed the day I decided to make my home in Boston because the snow and ice were so severe that I thought I wouldn’t make it through the winter. This year, it’s the opposite. Our fall was warm, our winter has been relatively warm, and, except for a freak Halloween storm, we have had virtually no snowfall.
Yet, I’m still not content. Don’t get me wrong: I am thrilled to death that we don’t have to contend with snow. But the freaky occurrences around the world that signal global climate change are too blatant to ignore. The fierce hurricanes, the failing crops in the Southern Hemisphere, off-the-charts levels of pollen, icebergs crumbling, and other catastrophic events are like death throes.
Have you ever seen someone die? It doesn’t often happen suddenly. No. It’s erratic. Their temperature is high, then it’s low. They have an appetite, then they don’t. They are alert, then they’re not. Same with climate change. Erratic. And scary.
I grew up on snack cakes: Hostess, TastyKakes, Drake’s, you name it. Now, when I say I ‘grew up on them’, this is no exaggeration. I ate this stuff EVERY DAY. You could say I was a real Snack Cake Aficionado. I hardly ever met a snack cake I didn’t like, except for TastyKakes peanut butter tandy cakes. I just don’t like peanut butter-flavored foods.
I loved cupcakes, Krimpets, chocolate Juniors, fruit pies, devil dogs.
Now, I would hardly touch the stuff today, but back then, who needed broccoli when you could scarf a butterscotch Krimpet.
Sadly, Hostess declared bankruptcy today. But I think they will restructure and survive.