Friday Night Open Thread

Update: Sitemeter is causing blogs to crash in Internet Explorer 7. Try using Firefox or Safari, it works fine in those.

Update: Skippy is having different problems, blogger has blocked his site as spam. For those of you looking for his site, it's temporarily here at Skippy, Jr.

As an aside, Facebook disabled TalkLeft's page, it's now two days and no explanation. Sometimes the internets just suck.

Update: Susie at Suburban Guerilla is laid off and needs 3 operations and her insurance is running out. If you can send a few bucks her way, that would be great.

It's hot in Denver...104 degrees today. Too hot to even search for a unique summer song. Summer in the City, Heat Wave, even Boys of Summer, I'm tired of them.

Here's Bryan Adams and The Summer of '69...at least it rocks.

This is an open thread.

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    VuVox (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by Stellaaa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:08:05 PM EST
    Jeralyn, check this out, see if you can do some great pictorial collages for us from the convention.    I would love to see your pics.  It's so easy and makes great presentations.  

    It was actually a beautiful day in the east (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:16:16 PM EST
    I did, however, have to spend 3ish hours on Amtrak. NYC to PHL and back for a post-extraction wisdom teeth evaluation.

    Ha. I need to see a dentist, just for a checkup. (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by MarkL on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:25:51 PM EST
    I finally saw an orthopedist about a chronic shoulder problem, and got referred to a physical therapist. After one session I already noticed a marked difference. In a few weeks, she thinks I can correct the problems that are aggravating the shoulder. I'm psyched.

    At least you didn't go to a chiropractor (none / 0) (#13)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:29:03 PM EST
    They are, charitably, quacks.

    You don't need to convince me of that. (5.00 / 2) (#16)
    by MarkL on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:34:18 PM EST
    There is a young guy who works at my gym, and his father is a chiropractor. He is full of medical misinformation---just like his father, I'm sure.
    Actually I really wanted to tell him off when he told me that he had informed a girl who had gallbladder problems that they were the result of repressed anger.

    I've gotten good care from (none / 0) (#116)
    by nycstray on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:55:36 PM EST
    Chiros. But they aren't my only care. Helped a lot after accidents. Beat the heck outta wearing a body brace for a crooked spine as a kid. Heck, even the family Doxies gained a better life with chiro treatments. My last one turned out to be a treasure when it came to helping me out with issues arising from the computer work I do. And he turned me on to OTC pain relief Arnica. Also works great when I trip over something and slam myself a new massive bruise  ;)

    It's a balance of cares that work for me. I look for the least invasive and most natural and move on from there. Same way I care for my pets also. Start on the preventive end with pure good food and life to give yourself the maximum opportunity to be healthy. When things need help, weigh the options and do your research. Using my pets as an example, when my 17.5 yo kitties both had bladder infections, because of their age and it was causing weight loss, I went the traditional route and did the antibiotics. They bounced back quick and then I maintained them with natural supplements. I also have experience with male cats blocking. There's a natural remedy that if you notice soon enough you can try (with your vets approval!) and it saves an invasive surgery. And yes, they use it for humans also.

    So, imo, alternatives aren't always bad. What's bad, imo, is lack of flexibility.  And that goes both ways, the care provider and receiver.


    Not universally true (5.00 / 1) (#97)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:37:47 PM EST
    Some of them know exactly what chiropractic is good for and what it isn't and can be very helpful in some circumstances, like a combination of physical therapist and expert massage therapist.  The good ones are musculoskeletal experts and don't buy into the wilder claims.  If you know what you're doing, putting your hands on somebody can tell you much more about what's out of whack with muscles and tendons and bone alignment than just looking at them.

    Separating out the good ones from the charlatans can be a trick, but the best clue is how extensive their claims are and whether they try to discourage you from seeing more traditional orthopedists and such or want to work as an adjunct to that kind of treatment.


    I agree with you (none / 0) (#143)
    by waldenpond on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 10:40:51 AM EST
    My chiropractor is fine.  When I have problems, I see him a few times.  He focuses on exercises and sends me to physical therapy as he believes it's more appropriate for me.

    Yes it was a good day, that's why we spent most (none / 0) (#29)
    by Rhouse on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:52:18 PM EST
    of it inside an AMC watching "The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor" and "The Dark Knight".  We also saw the new Harry Potter trailer and The Spirit trailer, both of  which are  longer than the ones on the intertubes.

    safari works ok (5.00 / 1) (#24)
    by londonamerican on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:45:35 PM EST
    no problems getting to any site tonight with safari

    IE Site Crash Problem Identified (5.00 / 3) (#37)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:02:29 PM EST
    It's sitemeter which we all use on our blogs

    Earlier today, for some reason, embedded SiteMeter code began crashing blogs and web pages in Internet Explorer 7. Readers who attempt to access your blog in IE 7 will see an error message: Internet Explorer cannot load the Internet site (URL) ... Operation Aborted

    The web page will then stop loading and an error message will appear. The partially loaded web page will NOT be viewable to readers. In other words,
    visitors will NOT be able to access your website!

    There's a thread about it on Google Groups here.

    Even SiteMeter's own website is currently crashing in IE 7.

    I'm going to play with the sitemeter code and see if I can fix it

    So I made a good guess (5.00 / 2) (#42)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:06:00 PM EST
    It seems to me like they haven't been able to handle the load recently.

    Sitemeter is a pain in the butt (none / 0) (#100)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:40:10 PM EST
    for the reader.  I use the old Mozilla, which handles it OK, but it takes a frustratingly long time to do whatever it does, very noticeable on my pokey DSL.  I curse it regularly...

    Tennessee...to any of you who watch CNN, I (5.00 / 1) (#57)
    by Teresa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:27:09 PM EST
    would like to apologize for the idiots they have shown discussing Obama. They have come here two separate times, that I have seen, to interview people about Obama. They manage to choose the most redneck stupid people they can find. I promise we are not all like that and I wish CNN would choose another state to go find some Muslim hating Obama bashers.

    Copperhill, the town the had on 360 last night is an old mining town and the last time I went through there it look like we were driving on another planet. Nothing but bare red dirt as far as you could see. I don't know if it is still like that but it was unlike anything I had ever seen before.

    I only watch intermittently (5.00 / 1) (#58)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:29:55 PM EST
    But we know that not everyone in TN is like that. You almost elected Harold Ford, after all.

    Don't you dare apologize for those (5.00 / 3) (#63)
    by TheJoker on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:35:30 PM EST
    bigots, Teresa. Everyone (including Obama and most of his supporters) knows that MOST people of all colors try to be more tolerant of religion and race.  
    If the people on CNN were representative of the majority, then why would O even bother running?

    I can't help it. Why do they always choose TN? (5.00 / 2) (#76)
    by Teresa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:00:12 PM EST
    I was in a restaurant tonight and I looked around the whole time wondering how many, if any, of these normal looking, friendly people were like those I saw on TV last night. I grew up in a small town here in East TN (hillbilly country) and I never met people like that.

    That these people were willing to say what they did on TV just amazes me and it's embarrassing. Like andgarden said, we almost elected Harold Ford here and probably would have if his family didn't have such a terrible reputation here (not him, his family).


    CNN has been playing a similar game (5.00 / 1) (#107)
    by Valhalla on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:48:25 PM EST
    lately.  Not nec. with just TN, but presenting articles about how some people aren't 'warming' to Obama and then quoting the most r***, offensive people they can find as 'proof'.

    Now, that's not running free campaign memes for Obama, is it?


    Just watched the Obama-heckle... (5.00 / 2) (#60)
    by pmj6 on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:32:31 PM EST
    ...and his response totally floored me. In essence, he told the folks who were challenging his lack of support for African-American causes they had the option of voting for a different candidate. I guess that would be McCain... Seems like the "you've got nowhere else to go, baby" approach tested on Hillary supporters is going global.

    And to think that Obama is the one accusing others of cynicism...

    lol... of course (5.00 / 1) (#71)
    by Valhalla on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:45:50 PM EST
    it worked so well on Hillary supporters.

    He also told them they could run (none / 0) (#74)
    by nycstray on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:53:32 PM EST
    for office! There is an option besides McCain. Green Party.

    Did you read about Obama saying that (2.00 / 0) (#1)
    by MarkL on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 08:51:47 PM EST
    we wouldn't need offshore drilling if people properly inflated their tires?
    I am speechless. THIS is our best shot at winning the White House?

    Can you give it a rest? (5.00 / 3) (#2)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 08:54:05 PM EST
    That comes close to a personal attack on Obama. If all you want to do is bash Obama, please do it elsewhere.

    Hey, I don't need to attack Obama. (5.00 / 0) (#3)
    by MarkL on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 08:57:11 PM EST
    He is giving the Republicans the best material they have had in decades.
    I'll give it a rest, though, and let Obama do the heavy lifting for McCain.

    Addressing the drillnig part of your comment (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by Valhalla on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:25:12 PM EST
    I don't really think this switch will help Obama much.

    McCain still gets to play the 'he's against drilling' bit and now can add the flip on it.  The flip flop itself is not so damaging, necessarily, but it adds to the 'but is he ready to lead' riff that permeates McCain's current ads.

    At the same time, I'm not sure it picks up a lot of the pro-drilling support for him.

    If I were Obama, I would have stuck to my guns, talked about protecting both the environment and people's economic burdens brought on by high oil prices, and tied it in with that proposed $1000 tax rebate thing (I can't remember what it's called right now).  Then he could say Americans are facing a variety of economic pressures now and the $1000 allows them to spend money where it's most needed for each individual/family.  Then he's got both the 'people are hurting now' thing addressed and the 'we still need to protect the environment esp. for the future thing covered'.


    Well, Gore demonstrates the wrong (none / 0) (#12)
    by MarkL on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:27:45 PM EST
    approach. I can't remember the dismissive remark he made about offshore drilling the other day, but it really would rub the wrong way people who genuinely suffer from high gas prices.

    I am surprised there hasn't been discussion here about the Pickens plan to use natural gas for transportation, to lessen dependence on foreign oil.


    Agree. Love Al but (5.00 / 1) (#19)
    by Valhalla on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:38:42 PM EST
    the response to any proposal to relieve gas prices, no matter how wackadoo, absolutely has to be accompanied by a strong message addressing the economic difficulties people are having now.

    It's got to be either through debunking the effectiveness of the proposal (won't make a difference in prices) or what the Dems will do in the short term to relieve the financial burden for people.

    I thought that at least some part of the support for McCain's support for drilling was not because people really think it will help short-term, but because he at least put something concrete out there.  It showed he was paying attention to what is concerning Americans now.


    Agree with you totally (5.00 / 0) (#103)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:44:20 PM EST
    There's something pretty infuriating about even Gore essentially shrugging off high gas (and heating oil!) prices and only offering super-long-term lifestyle-altering solutions.  We need those, but one also wants to hear the sense of urgency so many of us feel to do something that will pay off in our lifetimes.  Offshore drilling ain't it, but I understand why the proposal has strong appeal.

    A spoonful of medicine (5.00 / 1) (#133)
    by Fabian on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 01:57:34 AM EST
    helps the medicine go down.

    The real problem is the economy.  The problems with the economy include rising energy prices.  There is no short term "fix".  We are victims of our own species' success.  Higher demand and unchanged supply means higher prices.


    I tried.... (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by waldenpond on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:13:34 PM EST
    I was roundly shot down as Pickens could only have evil motives in wanting to use energy sources other than oil and it was not worth discussing to that person.  I'm really interested in his wind farm in TX.  Supposed to be the largest ever.  I don't know where he got his stats, but apparently the US a high amount of wind.

    What you're witnessing (3.66 / 3) (#55)
    by Steve M on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:25:28 PM EST
    is the stereotypical liberal antipathy towards market-based solutions.

    If alternative energy pans out and we save the planet, some people are going to make a lot of money in the process.  That's a feature, not a bug, at least if we hope to fix things any time soon.


    Indeed, the only way to really move to (3.66 / 3) (#66)
    by Valhalla on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:38:42 PM EST
    alternative energy is to make it profitable.  People just aren't going to give up electricity and cars and heat in the winter.

    (of course there are other barriers, too, but first things first).


    Gosh, and I thought wearing cardigans (none / 0) (#69)
    by MarkL on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:41:13 PM EST
    was the key.

    more profitable (none / 0) (#134)
    by Fabian on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 02:02:38 AM EST
    With the markets, everything is relative.  So the best ways for alternative energy to take off is:

    The price of alternative energy becomes cheaper than fossil fuels, thus driving up demand.

    There is a larger profit to be made off of alternative energy than fossil fuels, thus driving up supply.

    And that is where the government comes in.  By removing subsidies from fossil fuels and subsidizing alternative fuels, the government can tip the markets in favor of alternative energy. Simple.


    Except for all those folks who can't afford (5.00 / 1) (#137)
    by Valhalla on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 02:35:38 AM EST
    refrigeration, electricity, heat, gas in cars, or the high price of food during the changeover.

    It's easy to talk about these sorts of issues as if they are a bunch of lines on a graph somewhere, while blithely asserting that people will just have to suck it up.

    Not only is it politically unrealistic, it seriously lacks sympathy and compassion.


    I can't conjure up (none / 0) (#138)
    by Fabian on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 05:36:00 AM EST
    resources out of thin air.

    What we can do is start communal living again.  The more bodies that share resources, the more efficient it is.  There is always a trade off.  People will live as they can afford to.  It takes the same amount of energy to heat X cubic feet of living space whether ten people live in it or one.  I've always been somewhere between marveling at gorgeous buildings with space wasting architecture and wondering how the h3ll they are heated and cooled.

    If people think that someone's grand house on the hill or spacious public building doesn't affect them, they should think again.  It's always supply and demand, supply and demand, finite resources.  Every extra mile driven, every gas hog on the road, every under inflated tire means higher gas prices for you, me and everyone.  Every extra demand on a limited supply causes everyone to pay more.

    Corn based ethanol driving up food prices?  That's an (over hyped) example of supply and demand.  (Fuel prices probably have a greater effect than ethanol production.)

    It has always been adapt or die, change and survive.  We can help people to adapt and change, but there is simply no way to keep on doing exactly what we are doing.  We can ease the transition a little, but we can't not change.  


    Considering that the US is the only (none / 0) (#50)
    by MarkL on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:14:43 PM EST
    country to get tornados (except Canada?)
    I would not be surprised if he is correct.

    Is that true? (5.00 / 1) (#104)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:45:48 PM EST
    Is NA the only place on the planet where there are tonadoes?  If so, any idea why?

    Because of the long corridor from (5.00 / 2) (#109)
    by MarkL on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:50:23 PM EST
    northern canada to the Gulf in which cold and warm air can mix. As I understand it, there's no where else, where mountains don't impede such flow.

    Actually (5.00 / 2) (#111)
    by Steve M on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:52:06 PM EST
    That's not quite true.  There are tornadoes all over the world.

    The US has the most because we have a wide disparity in climates, and no east-west mountain range to stop the cold air from Canada from bumping up against the warm air from the tropics.  But every continent has at least some tornadoes.


    I actually like this idea of a wind farm and (none / 0) (#83)
    by thereyougo on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:18:42 PM EST
    Pickens being a part of it and an oilman is indicative of his caring for the future of the nation. Even those crusty Texans have a heart and at the core we all care for this nation, that is a huge plus and the US won't quickly go down the tubes (sorry Ted Steven) when the Pickens of the world have their say.

    I always said we in the US have the talent the resources and the know-how to get us out of the oil teat or at least reduce it to a manageable degree.

    I am now a firm believer that our politicians in DC have been selling us the people down the river and now we're up the creek without the proverbial paddle. Term LIMITS da*it! Enough of those hungry wolves dying to stay in office giving th e lobbyists everything they want and the people be damned!


    Term limits only (5.00 / 1) (#105)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:47:34 PM EST
    make the problem worse, not better. With term limits, pols have little chance to learn up on things like energy policy and are only more dependent on lobbyists for expertise.  Bad, bad, bad idea.

    It seems wise to give up on the government (none / 0) (#86)
    by MarkL on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:22:06 PM EST
    doing anything serious about energy problems.

    I've decided that I'm voting against all (none / 0) (#139)
    by suzieg on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 08:45:26 AM EST
    incumbents who have been in office for more than 6 yrs. By that time, they've been corrupted to the bone!

    Go for the natural gas (none / 0) (#85)
    by BarnBabe on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:21:53 PM EST
    I own stock in natural gas companies. Heh. They are also signing up all the farms around here for gas leases. Part of the Marcellus Shale for Natural Gas runs right through Penna. It will be one of the biggest natural gas sites.

    Changed his mind, Mark (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:22:50 PM EST
    He told a Florida newspaper today he's open to off-shore drilling in exchange for support of alternative energy funding, etc.

    Shorter response to this statement (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by Rhouse on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:36:19 PM EST
    Paul Krugman and his feelings on the subject.  And from here you can go to todays column.

    Annexing Alberta would be a more (5.00 / 4) (#22)
    by MarkL on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:44:29 PM EST
    effective way of combating foreign oil dependence.

    I'm not sure I buy this. n/t (5.00 / 1) (#68)
    by Valhalla on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:39:31 PM EST
    That's why it was a "stupid" thing to (5.00 / 3) (#72)
    by TheJoker on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:46:45 PM EST
    say Valhalla. Even though it's technically true, the majority is not gonna buy into it. Look, the Dems aren't gonna say it but the price of gas is driven by ONE factor: Demand. Jimmy Carter talked about the downsides of energy consumption 30 yrs ago and got laughed off the stage.

    I'm not sure that's why the majority (5.00 / 2) (#93)
    by nycstray on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:33:08 PM EST
    won't buy into it. Of course that may be dependent on age, but many of us know it helps with millage, but does it help enough for the average person to get enough savings? You can only inflate your tires so much and the price hikes far outpaced inflated tires. And remember, inflating your tires doesn't help when your buying milk and other groceries. You can ride the bus and you're still paying the fuel "price". I know this as I've never had a drivers license  ;)

    Even perfectly inflated tires (5.00 / 1) (#98)
    by Valhalla on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:39:37 PM EST
    will not heat my house this winter.

    I'm waiting for summer to be over (5.00 / 1) (#119)
    by nycstray on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 12:03:12 AM EST
    free heat in my building! I am to the point though, that I want to pay a bit more for rent. We have been having increases in water and fuel, and my LL is the one getting screwed. And that's along with our ever increasing ConEd bills. My LL is an angel and my rent is really low if yer wondering ;)

    Yeah you're right. It was a stupid quote (5.00 / 1) (#102)
    by TheJoker on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:42:09 PM EST
    from O. I'm not really defending the quote but I'm defending the message behind it: conservation. He should just come out and say it but whenever you talk about REAL conservation people recoil. For those who are serious on the subject there should be
    a new motto: : "Use less, Pay less"  :)

    Conservation alone won't get us there (5.00 / 0) (#106)
    by ChuckieTomato on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:48:15 PM EST
    Americans drove 9.6 billion less miles last month and gasoline dropped 5 cents. Crude oil dropped 25 dollars in one week and gasoline went down another five cents. The price per gallon doesn't reflect the per barrel price.

    There is too much profit for the oil companies to significantly lower the price. Ask Exxon. It's up to us to find better alternatives.


    Use Less, Pay Less is (5.00 / 2) (#118)
    by Valhalla on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:59:47 PM EST
    a fabulous slogan.

    Ok, random anecdotal info, I know it's not scientifically valid or anything, but where I work I noticed a long time ago that pretty much everyone my age or older (was a kid in the 70s) turns off the lights in their office when they leave at night, even though the cleaning staff comes through a couple of hours later and turns them off anyway.

    Folks younger than me (or more like younger than 5 years younger than me) seldom do it.

    So we really need a new campaign to replace years of parental nagging about saving energy.


    Well (5.00 / 1) (#122)
    by Steve M on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 12:10:24 AM EST
    My office has a motion sensor that kicks in after 10 minutes or so, actually.  So that's probably a good route to go.

    Around the house, the standard routine whenever anyone leaves a light on is "Al Gore says to turn that off!"  I was raised to believe that it takes the same amount of energy to turn a light on and off than it does to just leave it burning for 15 minutes or so, but I'd imagine technology has improved in the meantime.


    Turning lights on and off (5.00 / 0) (#136)
    by Fabian on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 02:16:49 AM EST
    shortens the life of the light bulb(incandescent) or the fluorescent bulb.

    I looked into motion sensors and ambient light detection.  The research showed that indeed switching lights on and off did shorten the life of the instrument, but that the energy savings more than made up for it.

    Motion sensors work best in rooms with an open layout.  Kitchens, halls, bathrooms are good examples and outdoor lights as well.  The cost of the actual sensor isn't that much relative to the installation.  That's the tricky part.

    Ambient light detection works well with any area that gets good natural light in a public or shared space.  (ie not workstations)  In industrial or commercial design, this usually means hallways along outside walls.  Ambient light detection systems are sophisticated enough that they can add as many instruments as are needed to keep safe light levels.  So not just on/off, but increase/decrease.

    The real problem is installing these systems.  Easier/cheaper to spec them in a new build than to retrofit an existing building.


    I think someone like the Gov. Terminator (5.00 / 0) (#123)
    by TheJoker on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 12:10:40 AM EST
    out of Calif. would be a good fit in an energy secretary cabinet position or something in a Obama or McCain admin. Having a popular celeb who also has
    government bonafides would add even more of a spotlight on energy issues from a public policy standpoint.

    Bloomberg wouldn't be bad (5.00 / 0) (#129)
    by nycstray on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 12:34:46 AM EST
    either. he's not quiet about his "alternative" views and actually has been good on the efforts towards efficiency and I'm totally down with his food "issues" (which benefit health and conservation). Him and Arnie have done road trips on the issues.

    But we've done it before (5.00 / 1) (#127)
    by nycstray on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 12:30:02 AM EST
    granted things have changed and people need to drive more. Especially those that moved out of areas for cheaper housing and exchanged longer drives.

    I will tell you, as a person who has never driven, I'm surprised at the lack of millage cars get. I thought we would be much farther by now based on where we were years ago. Somehow, people stopped caring about millage, but I remember when it was important.

    Asking people to conserve is fine. As long as you have plans to help them and pull it all together into a solution. You do this, we'll do that. But just telling people to suck it up and conserve without any help?! No brainer. That's a fail. All the steps I took to save on electric a year and a half ago (or 2?) have been wiped out by price hikes. I can't conserve anymore than I am. Yes, I'm paying less than I would be, but more that I was. How's that workin' for me? Not so much. We are talking 60 bucks a month in the winter and over 200 in the summer. I also replaced AC's, the fridge and all kitchen appliances. Along with the newer computer on energy savings mode, lol!~  ;)

    I now have to relearn to drive because I'm moving. I'll be following my same rules after I move (food comes in bulk through local sources, CSAs etc, work from the couch, walk, public transport) but I will need to drive as I'll be rural. Luckily, I'll be able to use wood heat and won't need AC. But I will be buying fuel etc. I'm hoping to move there in April/May of 09. One less summer being robbed by Coned. It will prob balance out the cost it takes me to move via Campervan and moving services in the long run.I think I'll have a bumper sticker on the Campervan fender that says "I haven't driven in 30yrs, I'm not a fuel waster!"


    If you remember at the time (none / 0) (#89)
    by BarnBabe on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:24:51 PM EST
    He was saying we are running out of oil. The prices soared. The Alaskan Pipe line was started and guess what, we weren't.

    Fair point about Carter but his essential (4.00 / 1) (#94)
    by TheJoker on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:33:51 PM EST
    point was,is,and will always be true. Al Gore said that we could be off oil altogether in about 10 yrs.
    That's also ridiculous IMO. The problem with "activist" messages is that they are often (and sometimes intentionally) hyperbolic (my word) and thus can be distracting from the central point.

    Gosh (none / 0) (#65)
    by Steve M on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:37:05 PM EST
    Well, that's brilliant.  Now, which of those is easier to affect with government policy?

    That's true (none / 0) (#95)
    by ChuckieTomato on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:36:50 PM EST
    and pedaling a bicycle consumes more energy with under inflated tires. So, what?

    BS I don't believe your talking point. We should be drilling more until we find more alternatives.  


    We're Number One!, at least in Political (none / 0) (#5)
    by Rhouse on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:10:21 PM EST
    advertising right now.  From Keystone Politics, the PA blog picked to cover DemCon08, a little analysis of Dem and Rep ad buys.
    And Jeralyn, I feel for you about the heat, along the I-95 corridor the combination of heat and humidity is brutal, so with the settling of my fathers estate, my wife and I bought a 25,000 btu AC for the house.  The Cat will be happy.  

    Yup (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:13:47 PM EST
    KYW, WPVI, and WCAU (AKA, CBS, Disney, and NBC) are raking in the small donor cash. (And McCain's big ticket cash).

    In Colorado we have swamp coolers. (none / 0) (#81)
    by echinopsia on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:09:33 PM EST
    I got mine at a sale at Home Depot. I swear it's the greatest thing since central heat. It uses about 1/8 the energy of AC and it's so much more pleasant (you have to leave a window open, but you can sit right next to that open window where it's 100 degrees outside and it's 70 inside with a cool breeze blowing out). Plus it uses no freon and Colorado is one of the places where the humidity is low enough to make it the perfect solution.

    I <3 my swamp cooler! I think AC should be illegal in Colorado.


    this is the only support to Swamp Coolers I've (5.00 / 2) (#87)
    by thereyougo on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:23:43 PM EST
    ever heard!

    in New Mexico they're trying to get everyone to use AC refrigerated air on newer homes, because of the water situation. SC's use up alot of it and they don't cool that much. pLus they're a hassle to maintain.

    oh well we have AC so...


    Ceiling fans (5.00 / 1) (#110)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:51:25 PM EST
    is all we need in Vermont, except for a couple of days every July, thank God.  I have a couple of air-conditioners in case of some rare long-term serious heat wave, but haven't even been tempted to use them yet.

    Energy consumption in winter, on the other hand...


    Not true (none / 0) (#113)
    by echinopsia on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:52:52 PM EST
    They're easier to maintain than AC. They use only a few gallons of water a day - less than one shower. I'm a 54-year-old single homeowner with a bad back and maintaining my swamp cooler is the least of my chores. Cleaning the gutters is lots harder.

    I've had mine for three years and before this I lived in a 2400 sf house with a swamp cooler for ten years. The maintenance is minimal. The cost is low. The environmental impact is lower still. The best thing is that you have to leave windows open and no matter how many windows you leave open, the cost is the same. They reduce the outside temperature by at least 20 degrees in my experience. Sometimes more - today it was 104 here and the temp inside never went over 72. And that was with the swamp cooler set on low!

    If you live in a low humidity area, you should get rid of the AC and get a swamp cooler. The planet will thank you and you'll be so much more comfortable. No more living inside a dank, smelly closed-off space that feels like living inside a refrigerator - it feels like living next to a waterfall.


    And BTW (5.00 / 1) (#120)
    by echinopsia on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 12:05:09 AM EST
    we're having a record hot spell in Denver. This is the 20th day with temps over 90 (a record), and we were one degree away from breaking the record for the hottest temperature ever recorded in Denver today. And there's no end in sight - it's going to be near 100 for the next few days and even after that it will be over 90.

    I seem to remember (5.00 / 1) (#124)
    by Jeralyn on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 12:13:34 AM EST
    when I first moved here in the early 70's, every summer day was over 90 and many over 100. I drove a convertible back then and especially since we are a mile up, it got hot. A lot of days I had a sunburned scalp and it took a while to figure out what it was.

    Yeah, me too (5.00 / 2) (#128)
    by echinopsia on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 12:30:55 AM EST
    I moved here in the very late fall of 1991 and I was amazed at the mild winter we had in early 1992. We were sitting outside in 70-degree days in February.

    Then in late August 95 we moved into our house and it was brutally hot - over 90.  To me, coming from SoCal, that wasn't that bad. I was used to 120 inland.

    But I do seem to remember that 90 and even 100 degrees was not a big deal between 1992 and now. However, we used to get those late afternoon thunderstorms every day that would ameliorate the heat. We're not getting those this summer. In fact we're about 6.5 inches below average rainfall for the year, and that's a lot when your average rainfall is 13 inches.


    However living along the I-95 corridor (none / 0) (#121)
    by Rhouse on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 12:09:25 AM EST
    In the summer you really need it.  The cities are heat generators and we always have high humidity in the summer months.  And please don't take this the wrong way, but sometimes you want a category one hurricane to come through just to break the heat cycle. 'cause a prolonged Bermuda high just makes it like walking through a sticky, thick soup.

    Is that the air conditioners that have water (none / 0) (#82)
    by Teresa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:14:19 PM EST
    running through them? When I lived in New Mexico, we had one like that. I loved the low humidity air there.

    Has anyone else (none / 0) (#8)
    by standingup on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:22:35 PM EST
    Yes, it's baloney (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by Valhalla on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:29:24 PM EST
    Hillary gave a talk at a thing today (maybe yesterday) and said pretty much the exact opposite.

    The deconstruction of the faulty (and in my opinion, AP-like scutting-Hillary cr&p) was in another thread today.  Also, links to the vid.

    Cher, Clueless: As if.


    Oops, I think I meant 'scuttling' n/t (none / 0) (#23)
    by Valhalla on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:45:06 PM EST
    There's vid of her in (none / 0) (#14)
    by nycstray on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:29:06 PM EST
    one of the other threads saying the exact opposite  ;)

    Thanks (none / 0) (#26)
    by standingup on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:48:05 PM EST
    I have been out and guess I missed it in the other thread.  Comments have been fast and furious the last couple of days.

    I can get to Talkleft on Firefox but not (none / 0) (#18)
    by Teresa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:37:22 PM EST
    Internet Explorer. I get a message that they can't open talkleft, operation aborted every time I try for the last 15 minutes. Anyone else?

    Me too Teresa, no luck with IE. (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by Rhouse on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:42:31 PM EST
    I'm using Safari right now, and have both Firefox and if desperate, I have Opera on the Wii ( TL is marked as a favorite along with LOLCats,)

    Yeah Safari Works Fine for Me (5.00 / 1) (#27)
    by squeaky on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:48:58 PM EST
    I hear firefox is good too.

    On Mac, it isn't (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:49:42 PM EST
    Safari for me, unless there's some specific reason not to use it.

    firefox on my mac works great (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:33:03 PM EST
    I like it better than safari. It's way better than IE which I haven't used in years.

    I love Firefox (5.00 / 1) (#96)
    by BarnBabe on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:37:13 PM EST
    Have to keep IE on the desktop though as some sites, like updates will only let you use IE for them to work. And on my laptop, even one of the Adobe files will not open if in Firefox in Vista. Ijust use the IE then and it works. Easier than trying to figure out what I need to do to get it to work in Firefox.

    I find that it unmaclike (none / 0) (#64)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:36:31 PM EST
    It's a decent Windows app. . .but on the Mac.

    I'm on a Mac also (none / 0) (#73)
    by nycstray on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:50:48 PM EST
    I don't even know if I have IE on this computer, lol!~ I may still have it on my laptop. Once I got used to FF, that was it for me. It handles the clients sites that I'm downloading massive art files from just fine. Safari would do all kinds a weird things that really worked my nerves and patience. I keep all kids of tabs going for amusement during downloads :) And it logs some of the passwords that I forget to keychain, which saves me from having to dig around or remember some password from last year.

    What ever you do. DON'T try to use IE (none / 0) (#77)
    by Rhouse on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:01:41 PM EST
    on a Mac.  They stopped with IE V5, I believe, and haven't updated it for years.

    Correct (none / 0) (#78)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:05:09 PM EST
    You can't even download it from MS anymore.

    IE Mac was actually a decent app when it came out. . .in 1997.


    Thanks you 2! (5.00 / 1) (#84)
    by nycstray on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:21:17 PM EST
    I've had this computer for going on 2yrs and the one prior (laptop) going on 5, I honestly don't remember when I stopped IE (it's all one big computer blur!). I do know I was mainly using Safari and IE was my back up trial for problem sites at the time I started FF. Now it's mostly FF, but if something weird is going on with a site I check it out in Safari. One of my clients is a good friend and she's always on the latest and greatest in computers and programs, so I let her do the trouble shooting and then move forward after I get the all clear. She's the one that got me on FF with the clients sites as she uses the same ones. It's always nice to have someone confirm you're not crazy or doing something stupid, it's the programs! I would have files disappearing out of my "cart" and phantom downloads etc along with outright crashing and freezing. Not fun on deadline. And some of the files are 500mg to a gig, so the phantom DLs sucked BIG TIME! FF is smooth with those. {wheew!}

    BTW, (none / 0) (#80)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:07:38 PM EST
    lol!~ I remember that one! (none / 0) (#88)
    by nycstray on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:24:01 PM EST
    ahh . . .  like a long lost "friend". I'll have to power up my laptop this weekend and see if I still have it.

    It's hopelessly stale (none / 0) (#90)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:25:39 PM EST
    It hasn't been updated since 2003 and I got like 5 error messages trying to bring up TL.

    I wouldn't try and use it (none / 0) (#132)
    by nycstray on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 12:56:57 AM EST
    I'm so beyond trying to use programs that make my head explode! Thanks for the reminder though!~

    I'm now more interested in how long ago I ditched it. I haven't powered up my laptop in awhile and I'm sure it's got all the past "dirt" on me, lol!~


    i had to use firefox to get into tl tonight. (none / 0) (#101)
    by hellothere on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:40:36 PM EST
    my next computer will be a mac.

    Why's That? (none / 0) (#30)
    by squeaky on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:53:20 PM EST
    Do you prefer firefox? I have it, and have used it on rare occasions when safari did not work.

    You misread (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:58:57 PM EST
    What I mean is that I think Firefox for Mac is lethargic junk. Safari is what I use.

    Oh, Missed That (5.00 / 1) (#39)
    by squeaky on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:03:45 PM EST
    I am just used to safari and it works for me and have not needed to explore firefox, excerpt in emergencies.

    But I really do not like IE. Word, and excel ok, but ie, yeech, a step above AOL.


    Have you used the new excel? I don't like it (none / 0) (#43)
    by Teresa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:07:44 PM EST
    at all. It looks totally different and things are moved all over the place for no reason. Word is the same way but I've never been too good at Word to begin with.

    Actually, Microsoft made a bold decision (5.00 / 0) (#45)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:10:26 PM EST
    with the Ribbon. I don't have much nice to say about MSFT, but their aim here was admirable: they wanted to make more of the existing features accessible to mere mortals. In the process, they made Word far less customizable and really moved around the toolbars, but for 95% of users, it's better.

    The other 5% are pretty unhappy, though.


    That's it...the Ribbon. Thanks for the link. I (5.00 / 1) (#49)
    by Teresa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:14:39 PM EST
    wasn't sure what they called what they had done. So I guess I'm a 5%-er? I guess I just knew where all my functions were without thinking about it and I feel like I'm tabbing all over the place to do something that used to be simple.

    Indeed (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:23:11 PM EST
    If you have some time, take a look at "The Story of the Ribbon".

    Interesting andgarden. I didn't realize until I (none / 0) (#79)
    by Teresa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:05:21 PM EST
    read that that "Clippy" was gone. I really don't miss that little help guy. I guess I'll just have to get used to it. I email a lot of files home from work where I have an old version of excel and I'm just not used to this new one yet.

    I don't like the ribbon (5.00 / 1) (#146)
    by sj on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 02:25:55 PM EST
    It takes up too much of the screen space.  At this job, I don't have two monitors (I'm a software developer) and I'm really not looking forward to a migration to Vista.

    No (5.00 / 2) (#46)
    by squeaky on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:11:57 PM EST
    I have an old copy, and it works fine. My upgrade is from '02 or around them.

    Is it better, or just more confusing.


    I have the 07 (5.00 / 1) (#92)
    by BarnBabe on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:32:51 PM EST
    Took it off. Put on the 03. Like it best. Actually I like the original 97 and Lotus 5. Call me no need to change Excel person. Heh.

    More confusing to me but according to (none / 0) (#52)
    by Teresa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:18:45 PM EST
    andgarden's link, I'm in the minority. If you go to that link, you'll see what it looks like. The color is also distracting. Maybe I just don't like change?

    Newer Word (5.00 / 1) (#114)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:53:26 PM EST
    is a disaster.  I stick with the old one.  At least they had the decency to make them compatible.

    My daughter seems to like it on her (none / 0) (#35)
    by Rhouse on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:01:23 PM EST
    new MacBook, and I run it on my HP Pavilion with no problem.  My wife uses FireFox 2.? on her I-book G4, and steals my computer when she sends stuff to her agent or publisher.

    I like FF (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by nycstray on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:54:48 PM EST
    I switched to it when I was having trouble accessing work sites with both IE and Safari. My blood pressure lowered after I went to FF, lol!~

    Where is a refresh button on FF? (other than (none / 0) (#38)
    by Teresa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:03:07 PM EST
    F5?) I've got google's toolbar but it is different than IE. I'll have to go to remedial computer school to get used to this!

    I still want my XP back. I hate hate hate Vista.


    What version of FF ? (5.00 / 2) (#40)
    by Rhouse on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:04:36 PM EST is what it says (none / 0) (#44)
    by Teresa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:09:04 PM EST
    I Dunno (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by squeaky on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:04:59 PM EST
    FF seems complicated to me too.

    Called FireFox V3.? while here and (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by Rhouse on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:12:09 PM EST
    you'll find the refresh "circle arrow" on the Navigation Tool Bar, which you can call up by going to/clicking on VIEW, then clicking on Toolbars and clicking on Navigation Tool Bar.

    Ah, there it is! Thanks. (none / 0) (#51)
    by Teresa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:17:09 PM EST
    Always a pleasure to be of assistance. (5.00 / 1) (#53)
    by Rhouse on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:20:58 PM EST
    Right Click on the page and (5.00 / 1) (#140)
    by Radix on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 09:39:21 AM EST
    you'll see reload.

    Vista - ugh (5.00 / 1) (#70)
    by Valhalla on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:42:03 PM EST
    I hate it too.  I have to switch between IE and FF all the time, because Vista doesn't play well with either for some things.  (I mean geez, you'd think IE at least).

    Vista bites (5.00 / 1) (#117)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:57:53 PM EST
    I made sure my new laptop had XP.  I'm hoping by the time this machine dies, MS will have moved on and fixed the Vista problems with the next W version.

    Enjoy XP while you can, because our good (5.00 / 1) (#125)
    by Rhouse on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 12:14:32 AM EST
    friends at MicroScr=w are discontinuing support for it.

    I bought a new Windows XP a few months ago (5.00 / 1) (#126)
    by Jeralyn on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 12:15:56 AM EST
    figuring they will stop selling them soon and Vista is awful. I haven't heard one good thing about it. This new Dell desktop with XP is the best computer I've ever had. Fast, doesn't crash, great 22" screen, etc.

    DEVO and Dell, how can you miss (none / 0) (#130)
    by Rhouse on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 12:49:03 AM EST
    one good thing (none / 0) (#131)
    by Little Fish on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 12:52:05 AM EST
    I really like Media Center and the DVD Gallery in Vista better than the XP version. I have all my dvds ripped to a hard drive and play them through MC. Its nice because I don't have to get up and rifle through discs to find what I want. I also use it for a DVR. That's about the only good thing I can say.

    I built my computer myself (geekgrrrl) and tried out a bunch of different parts to get everything working well and it runs nicely. 3 gigs of ram doesn't hurt either.

    My brother (a software design engineer) says his best Vista machine is his 17" MacBook Pro.


    If what I've read off of some sites is true (none / 0) (#75)
    by Rhouse on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:57:20 PM EST
    the next version of IE due out next year will work better with Vista.  And you might want to check if the computer you're running is really Vista compliant, 'cause it seems MicroScrew and (no)Intell fudged the chip-set requirements for running Vista when it first came out.

    It is the blue arrow in XP (5.00 / 1) (#99)
    by BarnBabe on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:39:50 PM EST
    On a Yahoo Tool Bar. Was lucky to be able to keep XP on this PC but seem to get around Vista on the notebook. But it is still a pain.

    Weird, huh? I tried a few other political sites (none / 0) (#25)
    by Teresa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:46:41 PM EST
    to make sure it wasn't those nasty Republicans but they open just fine. I've always had to use IE at work because of our accounting software and I freaked out for a minute. I wish I could get used to FireFox but I'm a computer nitwit.

    same here (5.00 / 2) (#32)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:57:45 PM EST
    and it's also happening on other sites in IE, like crooksandliars.com. It was happening at firedoglake too but is now fixed there. I emailed our webmaster Colin but he hasn't responded yet.

    Sitemeter problem? (5.00 / 3) (#34)
    by andgarden on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 09:59:54 PM EST
    I think they were causing TL to generally turn to molasses recently.

    yup, me too! (5.00 / 1) (#91)
    by hellothere on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:29:17 PM EST
    Question: how many "new accounts" (none / 0) (#59)
    by MarkL on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:31:59 PM EST
    have popped up since tben was banned a couple days ago? Quite a few, right? More than normal, for sure.

    I'll go take a look (none / 0) (#62)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:34:28 PM EST
    haven't done that in a while.

    Yeah I noticed that too. What did tben do (none / 0) (#67)
    by TheJoker on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 10:38:55 PM EST
    to get the 'ol ax? I hate that I missed it!

    He was a sockpuppet who had been banned (none / 0) (#115)
    by Teresa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:54:38 PM EST
    a few times before.

    Facebook is blocking TL? Wonder why? (none / 0) (#108)
    by Teresa on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:49:01 PM EST
    My step-daughter joined a political group on Facebook. She has lived with me for 11 years and she says she's like me.

    She sent me a text last week..."Terri, what is the difference between a liberal and a conservative?"

    I answered back, "I'm a liberal and George Bush is a conservative."

    She answered back, "oh, I get it. Conservatives hate old people, poor people, and like to send people off to wars?"

    They also like to borrow and spend (5.00 / 1) (#112)
    by ChuckieTomato on Fri Aug 01, 2008 at 11:52:34 PM EST
    Soon to be ten trillion dollars of debt

    facebook's cracking down on names. (5.00 / 1) (#135)
    by Ben Masel on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 02:10:24 AM EST
    Their policy has always been that you have to use "real' names, and they're just now getting around to enforceing it.

    Deja Vu all over again ! (none / 0) (#141)
    by Andy08 on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 10:18:46 AM EST

    Obama opposed offshore drilling before he supported it....

       In major change, Obama says he'll support offshore drilling

    Is there anything, anything at all that Obama believes in???

    Rubin has it right ... (none / 0) (#142)
    by Andy08 on Sat Aug 02, 2008 at 10:29:53 AM EST
    Read the following article:

    A Week Late

    by Jennifer Rubin - 08.01.2008 - 10:39 PM