Friday, October 02, 2015

Ongoing surprise situation on an Enid First Friday: parking takes a very curious turn into micromanagement

I don't have today's newspaper extensive article on the subject scanned just yet, but I do have a screenshot of a Facebook statement I made and the replies I got from my followup questions in that regard.   When I get the article scanned, I'll post it later.

This thing is still developing, and regardless of what the explanations are, it's what it appears to be that's just as important.

As you can tell by the screenshot, the response was rapidfire up until I asked the next question, after which, in an absence of the usual rapid response, I entered ".....crickets...."....and there's still been no response as of this addendum:

I will now scan the article.
....and while I was scanning the article, this belatedly came in, and so I responded thus: processing the article....

Notice in the following graphic, which appeared on page A3, is recommended by the AARP for personal use, not as a public policy experiment.

When a company pays to control what is the government's area to control, basically paying (via donation) to gain micromanagement "encouragement" control over public policy even as a one-time "experiment"--no self-respecting conservative can be expected to endorse even this level of micromanagement of public policy, with this or with any other "good idea".

Oh--for the record, I don't link to the Enid Eagle anymore because they're too restrictive on non-subscriber access even to articles that are properly due public discussion.  And if the Eagle lawyers are reading this and prepping for a copyright dispute, I urge you to re-read the Fair Use section.  And this constitutes public discussion.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Big news snowball, both local and internationally--where to begin?

How about I begin by revisiting an old topic involving both local and national levels in the form of the Viacom audience and the debut of Trevor Noah as Daily Show host, an event that was denied to the customers of cable provider Suddenlink when they got into a fight with Viacom over a rate hike and Suddenlink just dropped Viacom altogether without even so much as a thought that any of their customers might actually own portfolios in which could be found Viacom stock.

Don't read into this statement that I'm laying blame solely at Suddenlink's doorstep, because in my comments about this situation much earlier, I opined that Viacom's reliance on rate hike revenue being more desirable compared to raising advertising dollars would raise eyebrows among the investor class, big time.  Well, I just checked, post Trevor Martin launch, the value of Viacom stock, and here's a screenshot of not just today's returns but also a value chart reflecting the stock's performance of the last 52 weeks to date.

That's starting to look like the old Motorola Nosedive.  Almost.  But note that the 52 week high on record is $78.08 per share, and the graph indicates that looks like what might have been stock average in the previous 52 week period, and when we're talking about Viacom, we're talking about a publicly traded company that isn't confined to just Suddenlink.

Here's a bit of a primer for this blog's audience originating in Enid Oklahoma, about things that are used as standard measuring sticks for productivity performance: for stocks, you'd be looking at P/E (price of the stock compared to earnings) and it's typically over the period of 52 weeks--to you, that's a year.  Also a standard measuring stick of commercial bricks-and-mortar is how many square feet you have of active retail space compared to square feet of inactive retail space (closed stores compared to open stores, basically) because if you take just a straight headcount of how many businesses you've got, you're making your itty bitty bait shops equal to the same productivity size as your big box stores, and that's just cock-eyed.  And so yes, you DO have to count the square feet of retail space on each of the floors of your multi-level retail buildings.

Seriously, people. You know who you are, and you know you haven't been doing this kind of measurement--you've been engaging in non-standard thumb-on-the-scale overestimation of how well you're doing.

Overestimated expectations of audience draw, aka ratings, is the pit that CBS fell into when it canned Robin Williams' show, "The Crazy Ones" now we've segued back to the Viacom matter, and all the pre-Noah interviews in which it was revealed that Trevor got the gig because other comedians to which the Daily Show was offered all turned it down.  I'm not going to say that Viacom's overblown self importance might have been a factor in the timing of both Stewart and Colbert leaving its stables at the same time--I'm just finding the timing rather fortuitously coincidental, that's all.  They both picked a good time to do it.

I've said it before and I'll say it again--a performer is only as valuable as his ability to draw an audience. Now you get to see this statement in financial chart form.

As for the rest of the news, I'll append this entry after I take a break.  I'll be back after these messages. :P

Nah. An update looks more like a MaƱana Project, here on the west side of midnight.

October 1 UPDATE: Well, I'm sure y'all are aware of the wall-to-wall coverage of the Oregon campus shooting, so add that to the growing list of news items in the news snowball I'm getting snowed under by over here.  That, and Edward Snowden getting on Twitter and following only one entity on Twitter: the NSA.  And yeah, I'm following him, too, what the hey.

I'm still going to address the matter of Putin in Syria next, though---I'm impressed by the chesslike moves he's been making despite the fact that he's been under heavy sanctions, as has been Iran.  And despite all that, Iran and Putin bolster up Assad unashamedly.  You have to admit that what he told Charlie Rose was the principle behind his actions are solidly legal: Russia, Iran, and even the U.N. is supposed to deal with the regime currently in power--not rebels, not anybody else EXCEPT the regime currently in power.  And the regime currently in power wanted Homs bombed, because in the eyes of the current regime, there is no distinction between rebels of any sort, be they from ISIS or anything/anyone else, ergo the U.S. supported rebels are just as illegitimate as ISIS.  Regardless of whatever talks that Russians and the Americans may engage in at the U.N. the Russian view has more legal basis than that of the U.S. and that's just that.

It's also no surprise that Russia says "don't listen to the Pentagon", but what Americans might find surprising is the level of credibility that Russia can make that statement with--and you can thank Dubya's mission to the U.N. in the form of Colin Powell regarding yellow cake in Iraq for the greater degree of credibility the Kremlin now enjoys.  That, and the very fact of the U.S. support of Syrian rebels at all.  Added to that the talks involving the EU, Russia, and Iran over the #IranDeal even before the U.S. Congress deigned to vote on the matter and you've got the world moving on without holding its breath for what the gridlocked U.S. Congress deigns to decide or not decide--they've rendered the U.S. position on significant matters immaterial.

You can thank the entirety of the GOP for that.  Sure, I know--I'm a registered Republican apparently looking disloyal, but I'm with the GOP faction that says the crazies have taken over...and by that I mean people who refuse to look at the cold hard facts of this and any other case.  I like my facts straight up, no icing, thank you very much. I like facts, which is why I am a Republican that won't watch a particular cable channel that has an ongoing record of demonstrable issues with basic facts.  Remember Microsoft, the computer wunderkind the GOP has a love affair with?  That's the MS part of MSNBC, people, and it's now owned by Comcast.  Next you're going to tell me that the GOP has a problem with big corporations, right?

I know that the Tea Party does, because now they're about the business of making all the old arguments against large corporations that used to be made by the liberals, all the way down to their anti-agribusiness position on immigrants.  Get real already.


All the high level weeping/teeth gnashing over big-dealing Syria pushes Iraq and Afghanistan off to the obscure sidelines, and all through the big-dealing of Benghazi by the GOP, the GOP just lets Libya drop into free-fall into the clutches of the same gang that killed Ambassador Stevens as if outside of Clinton, Libya's really just so much chopped liver as far as they're concerned.  This is the party I've registered with and I'm supposed to be proud of this. Like hell I am.  Meanwhile in Libya, it's Libyan women who are running rings around the U.S. chickenshit GOPers in Congress: Lybian Women's Platform for Peace is on the case.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Yom Kippur Eid Al Ad Adha Mubarak, Everybody!

I've been spreading felicitations online on the occasion of these religious celebrations (any excuse to celebrate something is a good one) and in the process of doing that, found that even Shaun the Sheep got into the act...something I found surprising; a sheep that celebrates going into the oven.  And then a punnyism broke out on Twitter with regards to the world's tastiest kippers.

As you might have figured, I found the whole thing irresistible and came up with this:

Here's the clip of Shaun the Sheep, courtesy of Radio Bethlehem (West Bank):


Welcome back to the blog, Linux trackers. You missed me, didn't you. All 36 of youse.

Monday, September 21, 2015

56 Linux trackers today and they still don't get the joke.

October 1 UPDATE: I continue to be able to yank 'em around, but they've changed pattern...and so have I.  They  track in pairs, but they limit themselves to 10machines when they realize they've been yanked around.  And so I have changed pattern, and while they're still tracking in pairs, they're upping the number of tracking machines.  You gullible idiots, ha.
.....and immediately after I posted the above, they've limited tracking machines to 42.  The answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything.  Hey guys--thanks for all the fishy. :P XD


When I see you, I just yank you around.  Thanks for the amusement!  It's been fun.  All 56 of youse.  It's gonna take an army, which is a nice job if you can get it.  You pile on this blog as if you were getting paid for it or something. LOLz.
Number just went up to 63 Linux machines. Cute.
 Nope--113. Never had so many fans of mine show up with Linux machines all at once! I'm flattered!!
Late in the day, the number whittled down to 1 Linux machine operator.  Somebody must have finally gotten the joke.  But we'll see just how long that lasts.  There's one, and one's not zero.  Bossman remains very very interested in tracking this blog at all, huh.  Here's a big wet one for ya, bossman. MMMMWWWWAAAAA!


Yup, it didn't last long. I've got 6 of 'em on my tail as I write this Tuesday update.  Of course I proceeded to yank 'em around, and this brought the number up to 31.  Hi guys!


Blog recheck: 2 Linux machines. After some yanking, rose to  15.  Hello again, ha!

Wednesday body count: 8 Linux, one Unix. Looks like the Linux kids dragged Big Daddy into the mix. Successfully pulled the same ole trick on 'em today, too. Suckers. XD  Linux count just went up to 19, but still just one Unix. Hehehehehe.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Mini-updated Mini-update, separately, monarch milkweed edition

Saturday mini-Mini-UPDATE: Well, over at Oakwood Mall yesterday, I was read the riot act by somebody who said that I didn't belong in a dying mall but over at Scribner's downtown. The person who launched the screed was in from Oklahoma City to belong to an association in dying mall, so go figure.  Oakwood Mall is currently on City of Enid Death Row, and even Marilyn Fulton's awesome mural in it is condemned to die Death By Wrecking Ball, but Marilyn's still a member who probably would do a whole lot better by abandoning ship to go to Scribner's downtown.  But hey--this is the Internet, these are the Interwebz, and I might as well just start another blog page for my own online art gallery, just like I started a separate page for monarch butterfly monitoring. C'est la vie.

Clara's Online Art Gallery

 And yet again, nailed 'em, ha!  And by this li'l exercise I learned that they're not bots.  They're actually Linux people type people.  All two 14 24 of you.

Nailed you two Linux guys again, didn't I. MUAHAHAHAHA!!!
 I just now had a little fun yanking my Linux trackers around just a few ago.  You guys still don't get it, though, do you--even though I messed with your machines, much to my delight.  There's more fun where that came from, too. :P XD

Yup--pretty much went on a quest to harvest milkweed seeds this past week, and I done hit the jackpot.  Blogging will resume shortly.

While you're waiting, you might as well peruse the page of THIS worthy cause

...and I still see you two Linux guys following me around on my blog. :P

Saturday, August 29, 2015

We break from regular programming for special event!--plus up-top UPDATE

Saturday Monarch UPDATE:
 ostI just started a separate blog page to dedicate entirely to the Monarch project.  People visiting this blog from Monarch websites should visit THIS blog page instead of the one you're reading now.

It's a Thursday mini-UPDATE UPLIFT: This totally made my day today, completely, but I posted about it to Facebook first.  Here's the screenshot:

I just found out just how easy it is for even the experts to misidentify milkweeds.  Some websites disagree with other websites as to which plant is which.  I just found out that Monarch Watch recognizes the Honeyvine as a legit milkweed, but that's not what they call it.  They call it Sand Vine for some inexplicable reason.

Friday mini-UPDATE, Another Day Made Edition: That makes two days in a row that got made, and what made my day today was something that happened on Twitter. Background: John Oliver pretty much made himself a meme with his new evangelical church of Our Lady of Perpetual Exemption.  It's been well circulating and recirculating ever since he announced its founding...and then my favorite Egypt expert and erstwhile celeb-activist, Mona Eltahawy, shared a video she liked on Twitter (and yeah, I Follow her)...but...the video was posted by Our Lady of Perpetual Astonishment.  And thus the Kismet converged:

Yup. My day has been made. :D  But this raises the next question: who is the perp? Her or me?

The usual amateur conservationist isn't typically thinking about this until later in the autumnal season, but I'm here to draw your attention that we need to start thinking about this endangered migratory species NOW...because they're about the business of hatching new youngsters right now, here in Enid, in fields that typically get their habitat decimated.

Well, my yard is a preserve for these creatures no matter what the City opines about wild growth pertinent to the less important "property value" because these creatures hold my yard in higher value than the City does, or might.  This video of this endangered species was taken just a few minutes ago:

The City likes to make a big deal out of monarchs in the fall, and only in one downtown park, but it'll bend over backwards to kill off everything their babies eat in the meantime...and they don't exclusively eat only the plant called "milkweed".  As you see here, they love raising families on Honeyvine.

I'll bet they like Butterfly Weed as well, as they're all in the same family of plants called "milkweed".  But just as the name "weed" suggests, the City considers these noxious and in need of control, if not outright elimination.  I step forward to say that, because these creatures are endangered, we should instead be cultivating these plants.  They're the reason why monarchs come to Enid at all, so far away from the Mississippi River Flyway.

It's a commonly held belief that the larvae are poisonous, therefore they have no predators just because the birds won't eat them.  This isn't true, due to the fact that other insects will eat them, and that's also why I'll put metal screening around as many vines as I can.  The main predator is the wasp, and because my pecan trees will host tent worms without the wasps, I cultivate wasps here, too.  They don't care what kind of caterpillar they eat, and they do eat tent worm caterpillars, army worms, and, unfortunately, also Monarch and Swallowtail caterpillars.

Sunday mini-UPDATE:
I was wrong about this Monarch mom being the first just because it's the first one I noticed.  Examining known Honeyvine patches north near the alleyway revealed nearly-decimated vine leaves as if munching had been taking place for a couple of weeks already.  Didn't see any larvae, though, so they're either hiding or the wasps already nailed 'em. Hoping against hope that the former is the case; will do much closer monitoring of that area from here on out.

And from here on out, this blog will celebrate the entire month of August as Monarch Mommy Month.
Yup, gonna hashtag that. #MonarchMommyMonth

The following article appeared in the local newspaper this Sunday, and I've highlighted the important paragraphs in orange while underlining in red the portions that I, a seasoned, experienced Monarch rancher, take issue with:

Concocting theories is what scientists are good at, but no single one of them can cover the territory covered by Monarchs and unless they do better in-depth observation, they're going to completely miss the things that I've observed in raising these critters--like the fact that they go on a breeding marathon just before migration, and that the newborn adult Monarchs follow their elders on that trip and actually learn the route by being taught.  Scientist should seriously consider this theory as well as the theory that they stay closely clustered throughout the winter cycle because they're still guarding as well as teaching the neophyte what to do over winter and when the entire lot should endeavor to return. It's likely that scientists aren't looking at a simple mysterious clustering behavior, but actually a Monarch school.

Note there at the center bottom where I've underlined the part that states that no butterfly lives to make the round trip.  I'm sure that their efforts to tag Monarchs have lead to that conclusion, which also tacitly implies that what's necessary is for the previous generation to pass knowledge down to the new generation, and the length of time as well as scope of distance endangers any chemical markers due to temporal degradation of the same.  Well, I'm here to tell you that a Monarch is smart enough to recognize individual people and make the distinction between humans and other animals...and they certainly know a bird when they see one. These are things I have observed that no scientist has even been in any position to observe, apparently.

The next photo shows how Monarch ranching works in the yard, and with NO milkweed--it's 100% honeyvine...and at this point I presume you've watched the video first, which illustrates Monarch maternity phase.  What comes next is converting the yard into a Monarch maternity ward:

As mentioned in the video, the Monarch lays the eggs FIRST. She'll come back a number of times over a few days still looking for good places to lay. When she's absent, I'll mark the honeyvine seedlings that I've examined and found eggs on them with rebar, hopefully before the vines get too big and as you can see here, some of them have already grown to a length that can be awkward to manipulate...and then in this picture, you'll also notice that I mowed around the honeyvine tendrils.

So far, these steps were covered: 1) mom lays the eggs 2) locations were marked by rebar 3) the area gets mowed, dodging the vines 3) rebar gets replaced by tomato cages, and when they're all tomato-caged, the maternity ward transitions into nursery phase.

In the nursery phase, the tomato cages get covered by window screen to ward off predators, particularly wasps, and in that regard, find metal--not nylon/Fiberglas--screening preferable because wasps will chew through it.  Wasps chew a lot of things rather powerfully, and that's why I keep them around to feed on the tent worms that may choose to homestead my pecans.  Monarchs are protected, wasps get to prey on other pests, and everybody's happy.

Maternity ward detail:

Tuesday UPDATE: I just now signed up for a University of Minnesota monarch larvae monitoring project HERE.  Here we go. Before I signed up, there was only one red square on their map, near Tulsa. Now Oklahoma's sporting two, and the other one's me.

When I filled in the various forms, one form was to indicate what type of milkweed was growing on the property, and none of the selections mentioned Honeyvine.  They did have an option called Other, so I clicked on that and now Honeyvine is part of their list of milkweeds.  High time somebody recognized that plant as one preferred by Monarchs.

Wednesday mini-UPDATE: I still need to view the video training productions at this point, but I went out and checked my vines, and noted egg laying activity in the field north of my monitoring district. 6 moms were busy out there, only one noted over here. All eggs and no larvae was seen at this point, either.  Pictures of milkweed proper that I've viewed online show gazillions of eggs laid on a single leaf, which differs from the egg laying behavior here. Each mom lays one egg on one leaf per honeyvine seedling, and if there is more than one egg, then more than one mom paid a visit to that plant.  I'll sometimes find 2 or three on a single seedling, but not often.  They lay eggs only on the lower leaves of each seedling, and they won't lay eggs on more mature vines in blossom--they'll just feed on the nectar of those. Observation continues.

The training videos are up on YouTube, so what the hey--I might as well share them on this blog too.  This is the first of a set of 11 videos--the introduction....

After I learned all this procedural stuff, I went out in the yard to try to take inventory and I tell you what--it's amazing out there. I figured I didn't need all the stuff they put into a reporting kit because I've already got the basics of what I need to do it, and I'm going to keep a video log of what I find for reference.  I got about 4 square meters examined and I lost track of which ones I already looked at. And all my rebar is deployed, as are all of my spare tomato cages.  At the last home show I picked up a bunch of  I CALLED OKIE gasline marker flags, but I know I don't have enough of those either. Gee.  Still, it was fun to do and I saw some progress in the form of 3 hatched caterpillars, itsy bitsy "1st instar" stage, and two in the process of hatching, which was fascinating to watch.  Yes, you need a magnifying glass to partake of that, and there's one in their kit, but it's an awkward hand-held job and what I've got is a magnifying inspection visor I wear on my head.  I prefer to have my hands free for doing other stuff, like holding the camcorder.  When I process what I've got, you can bet I'll post those marvels here.  But in terms of collecting data, I'm just going to have to rassle up my gasline markers so that I can strategically flag the area already covered and enumerated.  Watch this space.

I just posted to YouTube the dry run I did this afternoon just to try out what I learned in those training videos, and I'm posting it for all those skeptics out there who don't recognize the honeyvine as a legit resource for monarchs.  If I'm lyin', I'm dyin'.  Here's the proof:

Thursday mini-UPDATE: Spent well over an hour attempting a plant-by-plant inventory and didn't get very far because there are a lot of 'em in the northwest corner.  But I did spy a caterpillar large enough that it showed its monarch stripes.  Uploading the vids now.

Well, Blogger is being a refusenik again and I got on G+ and called Google out on that bullshit. In the meantime, a battle of life-n-death happened this morning and I got it on video...and posted it to YouTube...which I prefer to avoid because of those infernal outrageous out of line copyright trolls. Anyway, here ya go: