Weird news

March 31, 2011

Just when you think you’ve heard it all,
somebody comes along and proves you wrong.
As strange as the last few years have been
we can now report that the strange times
are going to be around awhile.

We got word that Obama won some kind of award
for transparency in government but nobody
reported on it because the ceremony was behind
closed doors. Do these people even realize how
absurd this sounds?

Some of you may not have heard about a poll
at Fox News concerning
banning the American flag in our schools so
as not to offend the Hispanic students.

There is a rumor that Moveon funded by George Soros, Organizing for America,
and SEIU have been busy on twitter trying to urge
people to vote to ban the flag and upset the poll.

We’ve also heard about a move to include
veterianary care in the healthcare reform bill.
Some lawmakers are pushing for this because
they believe all pets deserve medical care as
much as we do.

If this administration starts talking about
trees having rights, like one of Obama’s Czars
actually believes, we will lock, load, and
head for the hills.

Now we’re either going to grab a few hours
sleep or get busy. It just depends on how
things work out.
Comments are always welcome.


Helping the president

March 31, 2011

After giving the subject a lot of thought we’ve decided
that as a nation we should all band together and help
president Obama.

When one takes an unbiased look at all the man has
had to put up with it amazes us that he can find the
strength to face another day.

With all the problems left behind by the former
president, all the companies that were too big to
fail, the banks that had to be set straight, all the
money that had to spent to help our poor economy,
our healthcare problems, and more, we are surprised
the man found time to sleep.

Yet through all this adversity and partisanship he
found time to play basketball, play golf, and take a
vacation once a month. And since he has worked so
tirelessly to spread the wealth we think he deserves
our help.

As sometimes happens, we also have a solution that
would be best for both himself and all American citizens.
We’d like to help him out, but we don’t know which way
he got in.

So we believe that if we all work together we can make
Obama a one-term president. It would free him up to
golf and play basketball, and America would be better
place as well. We think it is a win/win situation and are
prepared to do all that we can to see this happen.
Comments are always welcome.


Upcoming auction

March 29, 2011

We’re going to shake things up a bit and do
a post on the upcoming Branson Auction that will take place April 8 and
9 this year.

As always there are some impressive automobiles
in the auction and about any interest will be
catered to. There are classics, collectabiles,
sports cars, pony cars, muscle cars, hot rods,
and trucks.

In the line-up this year is everything from a
bright yellow 1937 Cord 810 to a 1950 Austin
Atlantic A90. They even have a 1971 Citroen
Delivery Van, and a 1958 Nash Metropolitan.

If you’re like us, it’s fun and time consuming
to drool over the pictures on the website. In
case you see something you can’t live without there
is all the information you need on the website.

We’ll be busy going through the 5 pages of pics.
Provided we finish in time we’ll do our usual Thursday
rant, and if we don’t you can rant about us not
doing a rant.
Comments are always welcome.


Spark and a speech

March 29, 2011

We live and we learn. In swapping out a faulty electrical
outlet yesterday I started throwing circuit breakers until
I thought I had found the one I needed. I then grabbed
my trusty circuit tester and when no light glowed began
the process of changing the outlet.

The combination of a metal electrical box and the belief
that I had cut all power to outlet soon caused me to see
the error of my ways. The resulting spark was bright but
shortlived as my reflexes are still pretty good, the new
outlet is in, and the security light is working again.

After we fixed the electrical problem we heard on TV
news that our president had given a speech concerning
Libya. Once again we missed this part of history in the
making because we have a life and it’s too short to listen
to the nonsense coming out of the Poser in Chief.

We also heard about how our school board is looking
into making cuts in case our Governor doesn’t up the
ante to the schools. As is the case when the budget
gets tight those at the bottom of the pay scale will
be the first to go.

With a drop-out rate that is still high, why not get rid of
administration positions at salaries that would actually
do something to help with the debt. It sure seems like
our schools have too much management and not enough
workers.
Comments are always welcome.


Another crisis

March 28, 2011

We’ve heard the news that our City Council has unanimously
supported a new law to regulate security cameras in our homes.
This new law is neither needed nor wanted but the vast majority
of our citizens, but the Council knows that all will be forgotten
when the election rolls around again.

We do not know the circumstances surrounding the alleged
need for this new invasion of our rights, only that one person
in one neighborhood is the cause of it. If the politicians on
our City Council had any common sense this issue would get
taken off the agenda.

And now that it appears the flood will be smaller than expected
we hear of people who act like this is cause to celebrate. A
smaller flood now just means that colder temperatures have
kept the snow up north from melting. It could also mean another
flood when it does melt.

Here at the Casa Cruiser we’ll be looking into a small electrical
problem that just popped up. Since it is causing our security
light to malfunction it is priority one. If it is a small glitch we
should be back in business by the time it gets dark.
Comments are always welcome.


Dismantled ship

March 27, 2011


My brother stopped by for a little visit recently
and talked turned to the ship we served on while
in the Navy. After he informed me that he did
an internet search and found out she was
decommissioned I admit to being curious as to
her fate.

The USS Preble, DDG-46, was a Guilded Missle
Destroyer during our hitch and had seen a lot
of action since it was commissioned in 1960.

She was a lean machine at 5,648 tons, with a
length of 512 feet 6 inches, and a crew of 360.
With 85,000 SHP turbines and twin screws the
Preble had a top speed of 33 knots and a range
of 5000 NM at 20 knots.

The Preble was ‘dismantled’ in March of 2002.
That news caused me to wonder how one would go
about scapping something the size of a ship.

After some searching I discovered the Metro
Machine Corporation did indeed dismantle the
Preble, and even some pictures of the deed. You
can see the pictures here.

It seems like a sad end to a ship that had two
different home ports and a drydock while we were
aboard. We were almost hoping it would have been
sunk off the coast for an artificial reef instead.
Comments are always welcome.


Live and learn

March 25, 2011

As we cruise through this wild ride called life
we learn as we go. There are no instruction books
to help us along our way. As much as like learning
new things we like to share what we have
learned. The following is what we know to be true.

Growing old beats the alternative.

What other people think of you is none of your
business.

Life may not be fair, but it is all we have so
make the best of it.

There is no substitute for good chocolate.

Wrinkled was NOT one of the things I wanted to be
when I grew up.

It’s ok to get mad at God, he can handle it.

Make peace with your past so it won’t screw up
the present.

Anything that doesn’t kill us only makes us stronger.

Expect the worse but hope for the best.

If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw
everyone else’s, we’d grab ours back.

Don’t take yourself too seriously, nobody else
does anyway.

Comments are always welcome.


Two rights rant

March 23, 2011

It’s no wonder that average citizen admits
to being confused when it comes to issues and
the political parties. With accusations from
both sides of manipulating numbers to outright
lying, who can be believed. In some rare cases,
both sides are right.

To illustrate that point we will mention blurbs
of two speeches that sound like the orator is
trying to appease his base and how two different
numbers can both be correct.

On March 11 of this year President Obama said:
“Our oil production reached its highest level in
seven years. Oil production from federal waters
in the Gulf of Mexico reached an all-time high.
For the first time in more than a decade, imports
accounted for less than half of what we consumed.”

Two days later Mitch McConnell said: “Sixty
percent of our oil is coming from overseas. That’s
unacceptable.”

Huh? Somebody has to be telling a little white
lie, right? Both can’t be right; or can they? They
can if think like a politician. Here’s how that
works.

According to the Energy Information Administration,
U.S. dependence on imported oil can be measured in
at least two ways: total petroleum imports or net
imports. The net import system uses the total
imports minus exports.

We export around 2 million barrels a day which
is mostly refined petroleum products, and not crude
oil.

Obama used the net imports which were at 49.3% when
the last study was done while McConnell used the
total petroleum study which came to 61.2%. To see
these figures go to the EIA monthly energy review for February 2011.

Locally we are getting ready for another flood.
It looks like we may be prepared for this one and
as they say, hope for the best but plan for the
worst. We heard our Mayor had a case of foot-in-
mouth disease which he chalked up to being
misquoted. Just when we thought the circus left
town we make national news again.
Comments are always welcome.


Somber thoughts

March 22, 2011


We received an email which contained information
about the USS Ronald Reagan. A picture showed the
aircraft carrier beside the USS Arizona Memorial.
We were overcome with emotion at the sight and felt
compelled to do this post. If you have never been
on this memorial those of us who have been cannot
explain the experience.

The USS Arizona Memorial was dedicated in 1962,
the final resting place for most of ship’s 1,177
crewmen killed in the attack on December 7, 1941.

It is 184 feet long and has peaks at each end
connected by a sag in the center. This represents
the height of American Pride before the war, the
sudden depression of our nation after the attack,
and the rise of American power after the war.

The overall effect is serenity to allow visitors
to contemplate their innermost feelings.The
memorial consist of three main parts: entry,
assembly room, and shrine. The central assembly
room has 7 large open windows to commemorate the
date of the attack.

There are a total of 21 windows to symbolically
represent a 21 gun salute or 21 Marines standing
at eternal parade rest over the tomb of the fallen.

The memorial also contains an opening in the
floor overlooking the sunken decks where visitors
can toss flowers on the water to pay their respects
to the fallen sailors.

A shrine at the far end has a marble wall that
bears the names of all those killed on the USS Arizona.
It is a solemn space protected by velvet ropes. To
the left of the main wall is a plaque which bears the
names of those crew members who survived the attack,
and whose family chose to have their ashes interred
inside the ship.

The memorial is accessible only by boat. and
crosses the USS Arizona midship, but doesn’t touch
the ship. It is visited by over 1 million people
a year.

In the picture, to the right of the memorial the
remainder of a gun turrent still stands above the
water line. If you look closely you can see an oil
slick by the turrent that runs to land. Oil still rises
to the surface to this day and the seepage is
sometimes referred to as “the tears of the Arizona”.
Comments are always welcome.


A few thoughts

March 21, 2011

We are working on an update on police calls
and should be ready to post results tomorrow.
Until then, here is a little update on the
Stolen Valor bill making its way through the
process. Senate File 397 is set to be discussed in
the Iowa Senate this week.

The ‘Stolen Valor’ bill has quite a few people involved,
and some concessions given. But to stand by and
do nothing while kids are giving their lives in two wars
is inexcusable. Doing nothing is also an insult to all who
served and those who earned the medals.

Senator Shawn Hamerlink wrote the bill shortly
after the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in
California ruled that lying about military service
and/or earning medals is covered under the First
Amendment.

Shortly after it was written, Senator Black
requested to be a cosponsor of the bill and
ran with it. Then some members requested a
clarification of the crime. An amendment
limited criminal charges to individuals who
steal valor for, “the purpose of social, political,
or monetary gain.”

As happens, the Iowa Attorney Generals office
declared the bill unconstitutional. Another
amendment changed the crime to mimic the
description of falsely impersonating a police
officer. Still some objected and it was pulled
from the debate calendar.

Enter Republican Senator Joni Ernst who sat on
the subcommittee and is currently a Lieutenant
Colonel in the U.S. Army Reserves and Iowa National
Guard. After her impassioned speech on the Senate
floor concerning her sacrifices during active duty,
the bill was again put on the debate calendar.

We can only hope that common sense wins the day.
Comments are always welcome.


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