So…no real stupidity in the news today. The only thing I see is the ongoing brouhaha over the killing of Mr. Soleimani. Now as we used to say down south…he needed killing anyway. He was the head of a declared terrorist organization and flew from Iran to Iraq to meet with the head of another terrorist organization…but intelligence sources gave the game away, he was in uniform, and as a legitimate target he was taken out. The Iranians were naturally furious about this so they launched a counter attack of some ballistic missiles against two airbases in Iraq that are used by US forces…although they’ve been shooting ballistic missiles at these airbases semi-regularly already. In this case…they apparently told us via the Swiss I think I read it was ahead of time, launched the missiles when everybody was asleep so they didn’t kill anybody walking around, and even accidentally on purpose I guess missed with some of them. Then a couple of hours later a Ukrainian airliner was taking off from Tehran…after takeoff it was up to a speed of 275 mph and an altitude of 8,000 feet and climbing when suddenly it exploded into flames, turned to the right and then crashed in a huge fireball…there were several witnesses with video both on the ground and in other commercial aircraft nearby. The Iranians almost immediately said that there was an engine problem and it was attempting to return to the airport…but the problem with that explanation is that engine problems don’t cause the aircraft to go up in flames while in the air…that is usually caused by either an internal explosion inside the aircraft or from being hit with an antiaircraft missile. Then today…two “highly placed US officials” said the most likely explanation was a surface to air antiaircraft missile. They didn’t specify why they thought this but admitted we had surveillance assets in the area along with the ability to intercept communications…reading between the lines we probably have a recording of the authorization to fire, the radar used to guide the missile, and possibly the track of it as well. No telling whether it was a deliberate shutdown of a civilian aircraft or just an accident since the Iranians were probably expecting an air strike after their ballistic missile launches a few hours earlier.
Breaking news…I saw
this later…turns out that some random Iranian person had their phone out taking a video and happened to catch the explosion on the plane. From the video it clearly had either an internal explosion or was hit by a missile I believe…so either terrorism related or an accidental or deliberate shoot down by the Iranian military.
And speaking of Iran…some outfit named Morning Consult did a poll on Jan 4-5 of almost 2,000 US registered voters asking them to pick Iran out on a map. Here is a a map showing their selections…although this might have elevated to stupidity found on the news if I had seen it sooner…or at least Interesting things found on the net.
I could maybe misunderstanding the layout of countries in the Middle East and perhaps picking Iraq or Afghanistan mistakenly…but ya gotta wonder about people that picked Australia, Nevada, Greenland, and Brazil
And the actual Soleimani attack itself…according to the media for the past several days it was a clear over reaction to the attack on the US embassy by Iranian proxies in Baghdad…but it turns out that the CIA Director presented the CIA analysis before hand and recommended the attack as well as predicting the Iranian response. At this point…things appear to be settling down a bit…although the Iranians have announced that they are no longer bound by the nuclear weapons agreement from the last administration…you know, the one that they were already violating anyway.
Impeachment…we are still waiting on Ms. Pelosi to send the articles over for the Senate to hold a trial…and she is apparently waiting on the Senate to agree to hold the trial the way she and the rest of the Democrats want instead of the way the Senate majority wants…even her own side is starting to say it is time to send them over and be done with it. There is precious little chance of conviction anyway…and Mr. McConnell has it right that impeachment is a political process…but his saying that he will coordinate with the White House and is not an impartial juror is probably something he should not have said as it looks bad politically.
Moving on…we close on our new S&B…that’s Sticks and Bricks which is what RVers call what the rest of ya’ll call a house…on Wednesday then get our headboard delivered Thursday and our new waterbed on Friday. Yes…we’re getting another one of those since it is far and away the most comfortable bed we’ve ever had…the Sleep Number air mattress is close but no cigar as they say. However…waterbed technology has considerably improved in the 43odd years since we bought our other one. No more the hard side 2×10 lumber frame with the mattress inside. Nope…today’s waterbed is actually very similar to the Sleep Number in construction. It has a regular off the floor metal frame and the water bladder is inside a pillow top mattress…there is a separate heater for each side so Connie can keep hers at sauna temperature while Neil can maintain a more reasonable 89 degrees or so…if he recalls correctly that’s what he liked but will have to experiment as the pillow top puts more soft stuff between him and the water. We were going to originally head up to Tampa on Thursday to see friends Bill and Linda along with other New Horizons friends for dinner at the Tampa RV Supershow…but forgot about that when setting up the deliveries so we’ll just have to try again next year I guess. All appears to be in order…money transferred from our investment account for down payment, mortgage at the underwriting committee for final approval although with our assets and >820 credit score it will obviously be approved, insurance in place, repairs complete…all that remains is getting the final HUD form for the exact closing cost number, the walkthrough on Wednesday morning and then the closing.
You might remember about this family of “homesteaders”…and I use that term loosely…named Kilcher up outside of Homer AK . There are a dozen or more of them on a compound and they’re on one of those reality shows…this one is named Alaska The Last Frontier. You may remember that when we were up in Alaska on our trip back in 2015 we made a whole bunch of un about them. To hear them tell it on the show…they’re out in the wilderness surviving by the sweat of their brow and living off the land. In actually…they are 5 or 6 miles from downtown Homer AK…and the reason that when they show their landing craft coming up onto the beach at their property they never look to the right from the beach but always to the left is because the Homer Spit which is the tourist section of town is about 3 miles across the water from their beach.
There is a Chinese takeout less than 2 miles from Kilcher Road that goes down into their compound and a school with full utility hookups 5 miles farther out the road from town than they are. We have been making fun of them calling for Chinese takeout for years but it really came home to us in a recent episode.
Atz Lee…don’t know why his name ain’t Kilcher but it ain’t (Connie sez that it is because Atz and Lee are his first and middle names and he goes by Atz Lee since his father is Atz as well and goes by Atz)…he was heading out for a moose or deer or caribou hunt…some sort of protein to stock his freezer for the winter. Don’t know why he doesn’t just spend some of the money from his reality show and drive into Homer to the IGA and buy meat there…but whatever. Anyways…he was talking on the show about defending himself from bears that he might happen across on his 4 wheeler ATV and he talked about the semiautomatic pistol in a holster on his chest, another one on his hip, a rifle on his back, and another handgun on the 4 wheeler handlebars. Then he started into his “last resort” if all of his guns were lost or out of ammo…reached down to the dash of the 4 wheeler and pulled out a pair of chopsticks…he then talked about how he would stab the bear in the eyes with them. We immediately turned to each other and said…”we know where he got those…the Chinese takeout place”. What a bunch of frauds they are. Neil asked in the IGA if there was anything realistic about the show and they said the family was in and out of the IGA buying groceries all winter long…so much for living off the land in remotest Alaska I guess. There’s even an electrical supply line going down Kilcher Road into their campground…they always show cooking and eating by candlelight but I guess they need to keep the freezer cold somehow. Fakers.
It is 77 degrees and sunny here in North Fort Myers today…going up into the 80s tomorrow and through the weekend…I tellya it is a tough life down here. Actually though…it is way less tough than being up north where the dreaded S word keeps happening and where the uniform of the day can’t be shorts, t-shirts and flip-flops. For those of you who are a bit confused by this whole “go south for the winter” thing…here are a few images that should help you make better decisions in future winters. Yeah…I realize there are a few people who actually like cold weather…but I’m not responsible for their poor decisions in life. There’s a reason for us to be down here. Yeah…I know it is hot in the summer but that is why God invented air conditioning…and there are hurricanes in the late summer and fall but in a concrete block construction house well away from any serious water and with a tile roof that’s less of an issue than you think. Besides…we can always go somewhere else if it gets too hot…and we won’t get all that overheated by the walk from the air conditioned house to the air-conditioned car and then into the air conditioned Elks Lodge.
Got a shot of M15 and E14 today…the adults are still brooding the failed to hatch egg but it is starting to look like they are giving up hope so it will likely get evicted from the nest soon. At least with only one eaglet there isn’t a shortage of food for it to eat and the smaller one doesn’t get bullied and shut out of eating by the larger one.
This is a Japanese tour bus stopped on the highway.
And this is Going to the Sun Road in Glacier National park in Montana…the pass there is only about 8,000 feet high and this was taken in July when they were working on snow removal to get the road over the pass open…it typically doesn’t open until at least mid July and closes before the end of September. They actually don’t plow the road there…they use dozers to pick up bucketloads of it at a tie and drop it over the side…they don’t make a big enough plow to clear that road…same thing with the Japanese one above.
And now ya should fully understand just why we ain’t in that part of the country this time of year…crazy talk I tellya.
Interesting things found on the net.
If only it worked this way…the only bad thing about being down here in sunny warm southwest Florida is the idiot old people driving.
Who eats this stuff?