John Glenn, the 1st American to orbit Earth, has died at 95

Posted By on December 8, 2016

John Glenn

God speed John Glenn. Astronauts were heroes to kids like me in the 60s. I remember it well when he visited our flooded Ohio home on Lake Erie in 1973. He was on a PR stop and making a run for the U.S. Senate … yet took time to talk and inspire impressionable 14 year old me — a very special moment.

WASHINGTON (AP) — John Glenn, whose 1962 flight as the first U.S. astronaut to orbit the Earth made him an all-American hero and propelled him to a long career in the U.S. Senate, died Thursday. The last survivor of the original Mercury 7 astronauts was 95.

Source: John Glenn, the 1st American to orbit Earth, has died at 95

New LG Dryer arrived but without the stack kit (old one for sale)

Posted By on December 8, 2016

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The new matching dryer arrived, but missing the stack kit. We should have bought both the washer and dryer at the same time from Home Depot when they were really on sale, but I wasn’t ready for both. The cheapness came  back to bite me as the sale wasn’t quite as good as last summer ($50 more). 

Who needs a perfectly good electric dryer — I’m going to try and make up the $50?

Frohe Weihnachten 2016 from Katelyn and Drew

Posted By on December 8, 2016

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Tis the season to be starting to think about a “Jolly Christmas” as Katelyn and Drew sent back a couple photos from Vienna, Austria this week …  and from the looks of it, they are enjoying themselves. I sure hope little “Baby Oostra” likes K_D_IMG_20161206 long flights?
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It just so happened that Dr. Drew was invited to present the lung cancer research that he has been working on in his UMN fellowship. Katelyn opted to tag along and stretch out a few days touring there way back from Vienna to Paris. It is so good to see Taylor enjoying his trip to Hawaii and now Katelyn and Drew in Europe … they obviously inherited the travel bug?

U.S. Stocks Post Biggest One-Day Rally Since Election

Posted By on December 7, 2016

U.S. stocks charged to fresh highs, with major indexes logging their biggest one-day rally since the election. See WSJ story.

A date that will live in infamy — December 7, 1941

Posted By on December 7, 2016

It has been a few years since our family visited the historic sites at Pearl Harbor …  it was very sobering. Why do human beings continue killing each other — it is as senseless today as it was 75 yearsPearlHarbor75thimagame ago.

I would like to think that we are wiser and could agree to inhabit this one planet in peace, but as with generations past, there seem to always be those who desire hate and war … to what end and for what positive outcome?

About all we can do as Americans is try to prevent another Pearl Harbor (or 911) and to be be vigilant and proactive with our defense and intelligence. We have also learned isolation is not a safe plan and as much as we dislike overseas involvement, it is prudent that threats be tempered prior to attacking again (talk first, but be willing to use force when necessary before the threat is too great). Current threats from North Korea, Iran and ISIS are inching towards the "too great" status as are the power hungry and ambitious China Communist leaders — and let’s not forget the Russian leader’s desire to rebuild the USSR (Ukrainians and Crimea).

The best way to honor those who died in Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor, and six other military bases on December 7th, 1941 is to never let another American die in such a surprise attack. I’m thankful for all who served in that "Greatest Generation" and save our country and the world from tyrants desiring to dominate … may such evil be put down before ever attacking America again.

Encore gets a Vetus Strainer and thoughts on a sink upgrade

Posted By on December 6, 2016

I headed down to Florida to check in on Encore this past weekend and enjoyed the sunshine but not necessarily the long drive for a short stay. VetusStrainer161203bPrimarily the in-water project had to do with getting the dodger and bimini back on the boat and getting the deck cleaned up after the harsh summer and brush with Hurricane Matthew in October. Thankful she was no worse for the bouncing around … it really could have been worse.

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The Volvo diesel hasn’t been cooling properly ever since the engine was repaired … or maybe slightly after that when I replace the dripping waterpump? I doubt it is the pump, but am hoping that the small strainer that replaced the broken Volvo Penta original was reducing seawater intake?  We’ll see as I replace it with a larger Vetus Strainer. I like the Vetus design with the larger transparent screw off lid and quality feeling plastic construction. While I was tinkering with engine cooling I did pull the water pump apart to check the impeller and "lid" wear. It seems a little too tight but then that is probably in the design. Unfortunately I do not have any thin oiled-paper gaskets and will give it a try metal to metal until I can pick up or make a couple spares.

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How much longer will the Trump Rally last?

Posted By on December 5, 2016

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The exuberance is everyway if you listen to the talking heads on cable business news shows as all but "one" component of Pres-Elect Donald Trump’s platform is good for business, jobs and the economy. Unfortunately it is the component that the media and Twittersphere is currently focused on … a 35% tariff on U.S. companies moving jobs and producing product overseas. For a Republican to use the heavy hand of government is a big deal … personally I’m hoping it is a threat that is needlessly being talked about IF a 15% corporate tax rate and reduced regulations get passed.

For now, the prospect is for U.S. growth since the climate for business and free markets is much better here than in Europe which continues their socialist drift and internal problems with refugees and ability to assimilate Muslims.

On of the more influential financial thinkers is the WSJ’s Stephen Moore, who is also on the Trump business and financial advisory panel on taxes. He comments that he could solve all of the above by "taxing on the consumption end rather than the production end." It is simple enough that it is worth giving it serious consideration since it would address a lot of today’s trade and monetary gamesmanship issues.

Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.