Out of the Blue

As evidenced by how much I've talked about them here, the water-based birds in the pond near the new home of the BlueTower have captured my affection. We thoroughly enjoyed watching the serenity of the ducks and swans as well as occasional sighting of a majestic blue heron. Only a handful of ducks have been hanging around for the past couple of weeks, and while I missed all their friends, my assumption was that they'd flown south for the winter, and the stragglers would soon follow. But yesterday MrsBlue and I took a walk and saw that this is not the case. First we saw the heron, then down by the lake we saw swans, though this was a group of seven that we'd spotted there a few times, so the group of three from the pond may have indeed departed. Then we saw a bunch of ducks, and later on 11 of them showed up quacking outside our patio when I went outside. I stopped feeding them a while ago, but the way they recognized me shows they are the same little quackers from the oatmeal club. My research tells me that feeding them would not discourage them from migrating, but something has, as we're now well past the point they'd be expected to head off. I'll assume nature will take it's course, but I still worry for them, and keep suggesting it's time for them to seek warmer climates. Either they have to work on their English or I have to work on my duck, because so far the message does not seem to be getting through.

Ducky Links: Thanks Ant.
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Stories: Michael Palin becomes first - and maybe only - Monty Python star to receive knighthood. BS! John Cleese was the Black Knight!
WWII Battle of Midway: Japanese aircraft carrier found in deep sea. Thanks RedEye9.
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New evidence that an extraterrestrial collision 12,800 years ago triggered abrupt climate change. Thanks Acleacius.
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Why Your Brain Thinks These Strawberries Are Red.
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44 Replies. 3 pages. Viewing page 1.
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44.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Nov 3, 2019, 10:42
44.
Re: Out of the Blue Nov 3, 2019, 10:42
Nov 3, 2019, 10:42
 
According to the wiki page:

Southern California Edison (or SCE Corp), the largest subsidiary of Edison International, is the primary electricity supply company for much of Southern California. It provides 14 million people with electricity across a service territory of approximately 50,000 square miles. However, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, San Diego Gas & Electric, Imperial Irrigation District, and some smaller municipal utilities serve substantial portions of the southern California territory. The northern part of the state is generally served by the Pacific Gas & Electric Company of San Francisco.
"Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedies." -- Groucho Marx
43.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Nov 3, 2019, 10:38
43.
Re: Out of the Blue Nov 3, 2019, 10:38
Nov 3, 2019, 10:38
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Nov 3, 2019, 10:31:
From an article I was reading about the Maria fire, "...While its cause remains under investigation, SoCal Edison admitted Friday that it had re-energized a 16,000-volt power line minutes before the fire broke out." So, it isn't just a PG&E issue.
Is Southern California Edison private or public. Would it matter either way.

Edit
https://www.cnbc.com/quotes/?symbol=SCE%27E
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edison_International
“The time has come for us to move beyond seeing public health as the ax in the display case, where the sign says IN CASE OF EMERGENCY, BREAK GLASS.”
Pandemics don’t end because the economy is suffering and we want them to.
Avatar 58135
42.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Nov 3, 2019, 10:31
42.
Re: Out of the Blue Nov 3, 2019, 10:31
Nov 3, 2019, 10:31
 
From an article I was reading about the Maria fire, "...While its cause remains under investigation, SoCal Edison admitted Friday that it had re-energized a 16,000-volt power line minutes before the fire broke out." So, it isn't just a PG&E issue.
"Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedies." -- Groucho Marx
41.
 
Feed me!
Oct 28, 2019, 00:04
Ant
 
41.
Feed me! Oct 28, 2019, 00:04
Oct 28, 2019, 00:04
 Ant
 
I'm hungry.
Ant's Quality Foraged Links (http://aqfl.net) & The Ant Farm (http://antfarm.ma.cx / http://antfarm.home.dhs.org).
Avatar 1957
40.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Oct 27, 2019, 10:06
40.
Re: Out of the Blue Oct 27, 2019, 10:06
Oct 27, 2019, 10:06
 
Kxmode wrote on Oct 27, 2019, 04:00:
Exactly. The PG&E thing has NOTHING to do with the government or politics. It has to do with greed. Shutting off the power is a painful bandage. The problem with PG&E is that they are a complete failure. When PG&E neglected their equipment, they put the interest of shareholders ahead of the welfare and safety of its customers and the general public. The state needs to step in, enact eminent domain, and reduce the grid and lines in size to regional providers who can handle them at a micro-scale. Like what SMUD does for the Sacramento region.
You think bad governmental decisions are made for reasons other than greed? What do you think gaining political power/credit is about? Listen, I'm not saying PG&E is a good company or they made good decisions. But it is unfair to critize them now for cutting power after they were successfully sued for starting fires. As I said before, they will gladly do whatever the government asks them to do. In the end it comes down to this, it is always people making the decisions. And people whether they are politicians or corporate wonks rarely make a decision other than the one which benefits them the most personally.

What I am saying is thinking the solution is having a governmental body make the decisions instead provides no guarantee better decisions will be made. It is change for the sake of change. A better solution would be to legislate maintenance requirements and apply them across the entire state.
"Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedies." -- Groucho Marx
39.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Oct 27, 2019, 04:00
Kxmode
 
39.
Re: Out of the Blue Oct 27, 2019, 04:00
Oct 27, 2019, 04:00
 Kxmode
 
jdreyer wrote on Oct 24, 2019, 12:29:
Mr. Tact wrote on Oct 23, 2019, 20:29:
My point was simply that current politics are so fractured that the idea anyone would think having politicians running things would be a good solution is a bit of a surprise to me..

I'd say that politicians <> government. That said, faith in government is at historical lows.

Exactly. The PG&E thing has NOTHING to do with the government or politics. It has to do with greed. Shutting off the power is a painful bandage. The problem with PG&E is that they are a complete failure. When PG&E neglected their equipment, they put the interest of shareholders ahead of the welfare and safety of its customers and the general public. The state needs to step in, enact eminent domain, and reduce the grid and lines in size to regional providers who can handle them at a micro-scale. Like what SMUD does for the Sacramento region.
"Hard times create strong men. Strong men create good times. Good times create weak men. And, weak men create hard times." - Those Who Remain by G. Michael Hopf
Avatar 18786
38.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Oct 24, 2019, 12:29
38.
Re: Out of the Blue Oct 24, 2019, 12:29
Oct 24, 2019, 12:29
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Oct 23, 2019, 20:29:
My point was simply that current politics are so fractured that the idea anyone would think having politicians running things would be a good solution is a bit of a surprise to me..

I'd say that politicians <> government. That said, faith in government is at historical lows.
"The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge." Isaac Asimov
Avatar 22024
37.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Oct 23, 2019, 20:29
37.
Re: Out of the Blue Oct 23, 2019, 20:29
Oct 23, 2019, 20:29
 
My point was simply that current politics are so fractured that the idea anyone would think having politicians running things would be a good solution is a bit of a surprise to me..
"Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedies." -- Groucho Marx
36.
 
Re: Gone Gold - Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
Oct 23, 2019, 18:03
Kxmode
 
36.
Re: Gone Gold - Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order Oct 23, 2019, 18:03
Oct 23, 2019, 18:03
 Kxmode
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Oct 23, 2019, 13:51:
Kxmode wrote on Oct 23, 2019, 13:40:
You're using one of the most extreme cases as a reason not to do. Flint, Michigan had nothing to do with the system not working, but the people behind it being inept and derelict in their duties (which, is the crux of PG&E). By contrast, SMUD is run by the county very well. Since it's inception, it has thrived and continues to invest smartly in infrastructure updates and maintenance.
Aren't you doing the same? Plenty of power companies out there which have not caused major fires. I've already said I agree with you in principle, I'm just not convinced wholesale replacement of government instead of corporate control of utilities on a large scale is good plan. In PG&E's case, a take over could be appropriate. Let's just not do any over generalizing. In the current political environment I'm surprised anyone would expect reasonable decisions from politicians whether they be over judicial appointments or the mechanics around running a utility company...

With the exception of the the last point ("In the current political environment"; do not want to get into the politics of it), I agreed.
"Hard times create strong men. Strong men create good times. Good times create weak men. And, weak men create hard times." - Those Who Remain by G. Michael Hopf
Avatar 18786
35.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Oct 23, 2019, 17:14
35.
Re: Out of the Blue Oct 23, 2019, 17:14
Oct 23, 2019, 17:14
 
I found this website. Granted it's the public utility association, but they back their claims up with data.

Affordable

Public power utilities are not-for-profit entities that provide electricity to customers at the lowest rates. Homes powered by public power utilities pay 13 percent less than homes powered by private utilities. Businesses that get electricity from public power utilities also pay less than businesses that get electricity from private utilities.

Reliable

Customers of public power utilities lose power less often. Customers of a public power utility are likely to be without power for just 74 minutes a year, compared to customers of private utilities, who lose power for an average of 136 minutes a year — provided there are no major adverse events.
"The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge." Isaac Asimov
Avatar 22024
34.
 
Re: Gone Gold - Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
Oct 23, 2019, 13:51
34.
Re: Gone Gold - Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order Oct 23, 2019, 13:51
Oct 23, 2019, 13:51
 
Kxmode wrote on Oct 23, 2019, 13:40:
You're using one of the most extreme cases as a reason not to do. Flint, Michigan had nothing to do with the system not working, but the people behind it being inept and derelict in their duties (which, is the crux of PG&E). By contrast, SMUD is run by the county very well. Since it's inception, it has thrived and continues to invest smartly in infrastructure updates and maintenance.
Aren't you doing the same? Plenty of power companies out there which have not caused major fires. I've already said I agree with you in principle, I'm just not convinced wholesale replacement of government instead of corporate control of utilities on a large scale is good plan. In PG&E's case, a take over could be appropriate. Let's just not do any over generalizing. In the current political environment I'm surprised anyone would expect reasonable decisions from politicians whether they be over judicial appointments or the mechanics around running a utility company...
"Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedies." -- Groucho Marx
33.
 
Re: Gone Gold - Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
Oct 23, 2019, 13:40
Kxmode
 
33.
Re: Gone Gold - Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order Oct 23, 2019, 13:40
Oct 23, 2019, 13:40
 Kxmode
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Oct 23, 2019, 09:35:
Kxmode wrote on Oct 23, 2019, 03:00:
jdreyer wrote on Oct 23, 2019, 02:13:
I don't understand why it's private in the first place. It's not like there is any kind of competitive market.
I totally agree! Essential services like utilities, gas, water, and so forth shouldn't be on a stock exchange. They're putting shareholder interest above those they service.
Yeah, like the government does a better job of running utilities.. Flint, Michigan anyone? And I'm certain if I cared to look there are plenty of other examples of bad events/behavior. That said, I actually agree in principle -- however, the reality is less clear. The answer is probably tighter regulation of the utilities. Requirements to do a certain amount of maintenance. If the company feels it is unnecessary or want to request rate hikes to accomplish the maintenance -- then a public and transparent process to evaluate those requests...

You're using one of the most extreme cases as a reason not to do. Flint, Michigan had nothing to do with the system not working, but the people behind it being inept and derelict in their duties (which, is the crux of PG&E). By contrast, SMUD is run by the county very well. Since it's inception, it has thrived and continues to invest smartly in infrastructure updates and maintenance.
"Hard times create strong men. Strong men create good times. Good times create weak men. And, weak men create hard times." - Those Who Remain by G. Michael Hopf
Avatar 18786
32.
 
Re: Re: Out of the Blue
Oct 23, 2019, 10:07
32.
Re: Re: Out of the Blue Oct 23, 2019, 10:07
Oct 23, 2019, 10:07
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Oct 23, 2019, 09:35:
Kxmode wrote on Oct 23, 2019, 03:00:
jdreyer wrote on Oct 23, 2019, 02:13:
I don't understand why it's private in the first place. It's not like there is any kind of competitive market.
I totally agree! Essential services like utilities, gas, water, and so forth shouldn't be on a stock exchange. They're putting shareholder interest above those they service.
Yeah, like the government does a better job of running utilities.. Flint, Michigan anyone? And I'm certain if I cared to look there are plenty of other examples of bad events/behavior. That said, I actually agree in principle -- however, the reality is less clear. The answer is probably tighter regulation of the utilities. Requirements to do a certain amount of maintenance. If the company feels it is unnecessary or want to request rate hikes to accomplish the maintenance -- then a public and transparent process to evaluate those requests...
Damn you with your case examples and logic. Grin
“The time has come for us to move beyond seeing public health as the ax in the display case, where the sign says IN CASE OF EMERGENCY, BREAK GLASS.”
Pandemics don’t end because the economy is suffering and we want them to.
Avatar 58135
31.
 
Re: Re: Out of the Blue
Oct 23, 2019, 09:35
31.
Re: Re: Out of the Blue Oct 23, 2019, 09:35
Oct 23, 2019, 09:35
 
Kxmode wrote on Oct 23, 2019, 03:00:
jdreyer wrote on Oct 23, 2019, 02:13:
I don't understand why it's private in the first place. It's not like there is any kind of competitive market.
I totally agree! Essential services like utilities, gas, water, and so forth shouldn't be on a stock exchange. They're putting shareholder interest above those they service.
Yeah, like the government does a better job of running utilities.. Flint, Michigan anyone? And I'm certain if I cared to look there are plenty of other examples of bad events/behavior. That said, I actually agree in principle -- however, the reality is less clear. The answer is probably tighter regulation of the utilities. Requirements to do a certain amount of maintenance. If the company feels it is unnecessary or want to request rate hikes to accomplish the maintenance -- then a public and transparent process to evaluate those requests...
"Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedies." -- Groucho Marx
30.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Oct 23, 2019, 03:00
Kxmode
 
30.
Re: Out of the Blue Oct 23, 2019, 03:00
Oct 23, 2019, 03:00
 Kxmode
 
jdreyer wrote on Oct 23, 2019, 02:13:
Kxmode wrote on Oct 22, 2019, 19:41:
Mr. Tact wrote on Oct 22, 2019, 19:26:
It was a catch-22 situation before PG&E got sued for starting fires. Now they can pretty much say, "Toyota! You asked for it, you got it!" The choice is 1) cut the power and risk causing deaths due to the power loss or 2) don't cut the power and risk causing deaths due to fires. I'm sure the power companies will be happy to not cut the power if they are provided assurances they won't be sued if fires start from power lines.

3) Go fix their equipment. But they can't do that because they're bankrupt. So the better options is to 4) have the state declare imminent domain on PG&E's equipment and break it apart to regional providers. PG&E failure is they're too big.

I don't understand why it's private in the first place. It's not like there is any kind of competitive market.

I totally agree! Essential services like utilities, gas, water, and so forth shouldn't be on a stock exchange. They're putting shareholder interest above those they service.
"Hard times create strong men. Strong men create good times. Good times create weak men. And, weak men create hard times." - Those Who Remain by G. Michael Hopf
Avatar 18786
29.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Oct 23, 2019, 02:19
29.
Re: Out of the Blue Oct 23, 2019, 02:19
Oct 23, 2019, 02:19
 
RedEye9 wrote on Oct 22, 2019, 21:25:
The fallout continues at Boeing over two 737 Max plane crashes that killed 346 people, with the company replacing Kevin McAllister as president and CEO of the commercial airplanes unit.

awe
How much was his golden parachute?
"The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge." Isaac Asimov
Avatar 22024
28.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Oct 23, 2019, 02:13
28.
Re: Out of the Blue Oct 23, 2019, 02:13
Oct 23, 2019, 02:13
 
Kxmode wrote on Oct 22, 2019, 19:41:
Mr. Tact wrote on Oct 22, 2019, 19:26:
It was a catch-22 situation before PG&E got sued for starting fires. Now they can pretty much say, "Toyota! You asked for it, you got it!" The choice is 1) cut the power and risk causing deaths due to the power loss or 2) don't cut the power and risk causing deaths due to fires. I'm sure the power companies will be happy to not cut the power if they are provided assurances they won't be sued if fires start from power lines.

3) Go fix their equipment. But they can't do that because they're bankrupt. So the better options is to 4) have the state declare imminent domain on PG&E's equipment and break it apart to regional providers. PG&E failure is they're too big.

I don't understand why it's private in the first place. It's not like there is any kind of competitive market.
"The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge." Isaac Asimov
Avatar 22024
27.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Oct 23, 2019, 02:11
27.
Re: Out of the Blue Oct 23, 2019, 02:11
Oct 23, 2019, 02:11
 
Kxmode wrote on Oct 22, 2019, 19:21:
More California Blackouts To Avert Wildfires May Start Wednesday, PG&E Says

"We recognize the hardship that the recent PSPS event caused for millions of people and want to continue working with all key shareholders to lessen this burden going forward," Johnson wrote in a letter to the California Public Utilities Commission. "At the same time, we ask our customers, their families, and our local and state leaders to keep in mind that statistic that matters most: there were no catastrophic wildfires."

Similar logic:

1. You could get rid of an ant colony with a bazooka
2. You could discover the secret to weight loss at the bottom of a five-pound bag of M&M's
3. You could clean your dishes by smashing them on the ground
4. You could set your house on fire to get rid of termite
5. You could give your video game film rights to Uwe Boll because he has experience directing other video game films

Did you lose power?
"The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge." Isaac Asimov
Avatar 22024
26.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Oct 23, 2019, 01:37
26.
Re: Out of the Blue Oct 23, 2019, 01:37
Oct 23, 2019, 01:37
 
What about Blue's Duck Ponderosa!!!? :-duckwaddlequackquack-: Grouphug
“The failure of normal empathy, is central to sociopathy, which is marked by an absence of guilt, intentional manipulation and controlling or even sadistically harming others for personal power or gratification.”
Avatar 1858
25.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Oct 23, 2019, 01:18
25.
Re: Out of the Blue Oct 23, 2019, 01:18
Oct 23, 2019, 01:18
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Oct 22, 2019, 20:12:
Kxmode wrote on Oct 22, 2019, 19:57:
Californians can't have a stock-traded utility arbitrarily deciding to shut off power to almost a million people or more at random.
Okay, I'll admit I was cutting them more slack than they probably deserve. However, I was trying to focus on where they are, not how they got there. The power shut offs aren't arbitrary given the fact they've been successfully sued for causing fires. Like I said, it comes down to death by fire or death by power loss -- I'm sure they'll be happy to do whatever the state tells them to do.

Well, I'm pretty sure the state told them to spend more on infrastructure maintenance and less on stockholder dividends and lobbying efforts.
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