Sunday, October 12, 2014

Sunday musings

Sometimes one has to chuckle over the  screaming headlines on some  web based "news" sites and I want to mention two that I came across this week.
Both were on the one site, a "news' organization that has bureaus around the world and takes itself rather seriously even though the pages contain the odd fluff piece that one would find in gossip sites like TMZ.
Anyway, one headline screamed out that you better watch your wallet because a "T Rex of a winter" could send home heating costs sky high.
Sigh, of course if a winter is extreme and long, does it not stand to reason that fuel supplies will run low and prices will rise because the market will bear it?
Nowhere in the article did it SAY that the winter will be brutal.
So.... dramatic lead line promising high costs IF/WHEN..... and then the story peters out.
This is news?
The second story warned of dramatic price increases in food stuffs in the Canadian province of British Columbia as a result of the drought in California limiting crop production. And tossed in the the usual twaddle about governments should be doling out tons of $$$ to local producers to up their production - you know the refrain - grow local. well, maybe someone should tell the scribes at this news outlet that the California drought has been on for more than this summer OK? And that prices rose quite a while ago thank you. And for the refrain of grow local - you ever notice that the local growers charge a blasted premium for their products? And not because it is better, heck no - because they match the price of imported products and not the actually cost of production. Remember, they do not have to ship fresh produce from South America to a port and then truck it to a local grocery store. Heck, they can and do dump it into a truck and drive it maybe a maximum of 50 miles to the grocery store or depot where it is then dispersed.
Farmers are smart and matching prices just gives them more money.
And can someone tell me how organic products cost more when in theory less chemicals etc. are needed in their production?
You charge more for less?
And this is news?
Maybe that is one of the problems we face these days in that we might get too much news all the time. And the media folks have no choice in this 24/7/365 world but to publish any and all items that might have a scintilla of newsworthiness to them.
Thereby dumbing us all down.
Back in the late 60's to late 70's of the last century, Canadians had access (in the main) to only 2 or 3 TV news outlets and a local newspaper and the news articles were filtered for worthiness and importance - not for ratings.
I daresay that while we knew less, we actually knew more!
Speaking of technology, do you remember the painting I showed last winter near Christmas of a winter scene by a noted Saskatchewan artist?
Well, this summer he took the plunge and entered the wacky world of the Interweb and purchased an IPad.
And now... he sends e mails.
He takes and sends pictures.
He does guided tours via FaceTime.
He downloads.
He Facebooks.
He is having fun doing this.
And I think that is so darn cool.
So yes, technology can indeed be a good thing.
And he is a source of pride and amazement to his little sister (my better half!) and now she mumbles about her going on Facebook!
So... here is another painting of his done on a piece of clay pipe and it is pretty darn cool.
The drums of war continue to pound in the Middle East and yet... something strange is happening with the price of oil. For the last few years, or so it seems, that every time a refinery had a shut down or a country rattled its chains against anybody or thing - that the price of oil jumped about $20 a barrel immediately?
But now it is falling?
What the heck?
Do you think maybe those conspiracy folks might just have a case when they postulate that crude oil increases are nothing more than market manipulation by some wealthy stock manipulators that know exactly how to panic folks and squeeze maximum profits out of a non event?
Ya think there are greedy folks out there?
Ya think?
And governments stand idly by.
No question.
Enough to make you weep.
But if someone misses paying income tax by $5.00 - well they hound the heck out of them and even charge interest or take the money from their bank account.
Of the People, For the People - well, maybe not so much anymore.
Speaking of that workers Paradise - North Korea, it seems that their fearless leader has not been seen in public for a few weeks.
And tell me, why would anyone care?
Because.. (are you ready for this?) unnamed officials from both America and South Korea, are worried about some unknown successor rather than the "devil they know".
Yup, this dude may be crazy and evil - but we can live with that!
Man, that is so brutally honest and terrible at the same time isn't it?
Sometimes, just sometimes... the world gets things right and for a moment... a short moment... there truly is a hope for mankind....I speak of the news that this week, the 2014 Nobel Peace prize recipient that was rumoured to be possibly be Mr. Putin of Russia (hmmm, interesting thing that!) or the Pope (thought that was part of the job description) was a surprise and somehow the Committee got it right.
Co-winners, one from Pakistan and one from India - 2 countries that despise the other.
Kailash Satyarthi and Malala Yousafzay for their struggle against the suppression of children and young people and for the right of all children to education.
Both heroes.
We need more like them.
And now for your German word of the week.
How about sodbrennen?
Give up?
OK, not what you think, it actually means heartburn!
And the Hawaiian equivalent is haoa!
I wonder how Tums translates?
Over on my beloved Island of Maui, a story that shows that this little corner of tranquility has bad moments comes from a report where a Lahaina man has been charged with the attempted murder of a woman who complained about the odor from his mother's cooking.
Just a little extreme wouldn't you say?
On the plus side, this week at a ceremony held by the State this past week-- plans were announced to PRESERVE Maui's historic Lipoa Point. A truly beautiful area filled with the mana of the islands, this is indeed a great thing. Below is a screen grab of KITV 4 TV's newscast on this.
Once areas like this are lost to development - they are gone forever.
Something the folks on my Island could embrace.
Speaking of my Island, folks are settling down for Canadian Thanksgiving this weekend and for many, this is truly the start of the Fall season and soon, the TV ads for Christmas shopping will inundate us.
take care out there,

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