Category Archives: Just Interesting Stuff

A Good Article On Farm Subsidies

Here is a good article on farm subsidies.

Grain silos.
Grain Silos in Mechanicsburg, Ohio

It’s going to be interesting to see where Trump lands on the farm bills. If they resemble previous farm bills(I’m pretty sure they will), there is no possible way that a real businessman could claim that the bills are fair and good for “the American people”.

If you’re to busy to read the article, the short of it is that the government taxes you, then gives enormous amounts of those taxes to farmers in numerous ways. The farmer grows the government’s preferred crops of corn, wheat, and soy. They do it with heavy doses of pesticides and herbicides. So much so that they harm their land in the process. Then, they sell these crops back to you in forms that you may not even recognize(high fructose corn syrup, fuel, soy fillers, etc.).

Due to the products that use these crops being subsidized, superior non-subsidized products that do not use them are sold for what seems to be very high prices. The market is fixed and the customer is sold very poor quality and dangerous products that they unwittingly funded.

Simple Backyard Fire To Relax

A Roaring Backyard Fire Works To Relax

Sometimes all that it takes to clear your mind is a cool, quiet night with a roaring fire. I’m blessed to be able to do this right in the backyard.

I didn’t worry about the camera, the video quality, the steadiness of the shot, or anything else. I just took a video good enough to see if just watching it for a few minutes would change an attitude at a later date. Most likely, it won’t.

You need the entire experience. For this fire, the experience includes cutting down the tree even. It includes, the sound of crickets, my dog lying next to me, the stars in the sky, and the sounds of the train on the tracks just over the way. Very pleasant for a little while.

Fake Mud Stained Jeans. Fake News.

I seen a story on fake mud stained jeans. I have no proof, other than it’s obvious bullshit. I won’t post a link to it because the link will soon be dead if not just links to horrific pop-up ads. These links are to major “news” sites too, but their ad systems are works than the year 2000.

The story goes something like this.  An exclusive retail chain is selling mud stained jeans for $400. (That part is probably true). The part they fail to discuss is the sales of them are probably next to nothing. There are articles about these articles too. “The wealthy are trying to look like they work”. It’s just divisive bullshit.

This article will run it’s course and people will probably buy enough for some money to be made. The real money is to made from the stories and advertisements from something so ridiculous.

Our media is so full of this type of thing if they are writing anything trustworthy of value, I can’t find it.

How Advanced Are We Really?

I Question Just How Advanced We Are

A tangle of communication and power lines.
Technologically Advanced?

Sure, our modern society is exceedingly advanced, but we’re going at such a pace that I question our simple skills like organization and appreciation of simplicity and beauty.

This is a scene from Downtown Newark, Ohio. Newark was an area at the forefront of the aluminum, fiberglass, aviation, and manufacturing industries. Now, not so much. When I look at the downtown area and see this type of scene, the reality of where we are at sits in.

Our technology could easily be used to clean up messes like these. Massive investments have been made in the area, yet so much has been neglected before building new. That will catch up with us. The complexity of technology and the remnants of the recently outdated tech can get ugly.

Billboard Madness

How Many Billboards?

I counted 18 billboards on my 4 mile commute. A few were empty. A few had real advertisers. The rest were Ad Council and government ads.

Old Kentucky Club ad.
Billboard advertising from days gone by.

Photography and just getting older is forcing me to take a deeper look at what is around me. Here are the ads that I see everyday. They will have an effect on me in one way or the other.

  • Recycle plastic AdCouncil
  • Adopt a child
  • Pepsi
  • Join the military
  • Dental work
  • Radio station ad
  • Buy a motorcycle
  • Go to YMCA
  • Buy furniture
  • AdCouncil telling me to get a mortgage.
  • Get a billboard spot
  • Hepatitus C from CDC
  • Ham Sandwiches
  • Garage doors
  • Big Brothers
  • Just photo of an empty bed
  • Empty boards
  • AdCouncil telling black men to be better fathers.

Weird Billboards

So that’s quite a bombardment of advertising. With that much, I’m sure something somewhere influenced my thought process. I’m not so worried that someone might want to sell me a ham sandwich or a motorcycle either.

I find the government influence coming from the AdCouncil and CDC on the creepy side. Should the decision to adopt be sparked by a billboard? Immunization and disease information should come from your doctor right? Why am I getting input for these things the same way I’m sold a ham sandwich?

The creepiest is the empty bed. It’s covert. The intention is to get others to ask why such a lame photo is on a billboard. Then, you dig a little and find out the photographer his lover died of aids. That’s supposed to spark conversation. To me, that’s just weird.

Think about what you see. Apply that to your thought processes. Guard yourself against the seeds of thought that may or may not be to your benefit. Quite a different approach from the photo of a pristine ham sandwich.

A Foggy Day For National Road History

National Road History On 1/2/2017

National Road History peaks my interest. Every year, less and less evidence of the old road exist. More vanishes and gives way to newer things. Today I rode from Route 13 to Columbus, Ohio on Route 40 to have a look.

The Jack Town Pub Is Gone

The Jack Town Pub On The National Road in Jacksontown, Ohio.
The Jack Town Pub On Route 40 in Jacksontown, Ohio.

Today, 1/2/2017, The Jack Town Pub is gone.

Jack Town Pub Leveled
The Jack Town Pub is now gone.

I heard so many rumors about the demise of The Jack Town Pub that I wouldn’t really know the exact cause. What replaces it will tell me more about what really happened here. The end result though, a missing piece of Licking County, Ohio history on The National Road. Not all of it can be saved. We can hope something promising replaces it.

The Shamrock Is Falling Into Severe Disrepair

The Shamrock Motel in Etna, Ohio on route 40.
The Shamrock Motel On The National Road

Old historical buildings tend to turn into rummage sales, antique stores, and flea markets before their demise. It’s as if they are recalling better times and spewing out remnants from those days.

Rural decay on The National Road.
The rural decay of The Shamrock Motel on The National Road.
Motel room office for The Shamrock In Etna, Ohi.
The office for the motel rooms at The Shamrock on Route 40.

National Road history is so interesting because it’s still alive. You can drive out to it and touch and feel it. The modern day equivalent roars loud nearby on Interstate 70.

The road stretches from the middle of Illinois to Baltimore, Maryland. Where it starts and stops depends on what level of National Road purist you are.

Today’s foggy January 2, 2017 visit was just another witness to the state of the road. As for so long, it just slowly rots away and occasionally headway is made and new businesses arrive.

Newark, Ohio Air Pollution. You Should Know What’s In It.

This post isn’t going to be what you think. I’m not just another wild-eyed commie looking to force air pollution controls on you and shut down a factory with no consideration of the consequences. This isn’t completely about the consequences of air pollution. This is about knowledge and being aware of your surroundings.

Air Pollution Over Newark, Ohio.
Plume of smoke over Newark, Ohio.

I have seen and smelled this pollution from the same factory in Newark, Ohio for many years. I wondered what might be in that cloud, but never really investigated. It turns out that the emission from this factory include:

  • Fermaldyhyde
  • Lead
  • Ammonia
  • Chromium
  • Manganese Compounds

That’s substantial and it’s enough to be one of the major polluters in the state. It’s something that I should know.

I will leave this here to let others think for themselves. I am the wrong person to get into the details. I would just be parroting what I read. What I am saying is that we shouldn’t be just casual observers of major situations around us. Use the awesome tools we have today to quickly answer questions like this.

The media makes information concerning these things political too. With this one, politics don’t sort it out for you. If you’re on the left, you’re usual dialogue is done for. This is coming from a factory that makes material that greatly reduces energy usage. If you’re on the right, you can look at that increased rates with health problems that these pollutants and the amounts are well reported. Denial is a problem.

If you live near this thing and don’t know what it’s spewing out, you have no voice at all. You have no idea that’s it not allergies making you sick, it’s the factory down the street. Can you think of some people who enjoy so many no even thinking about it?

Why Instagram?

I got an Instagram account, but I’m still not sure exactly how I’ll use it. There are so many platforms on the web that it almost makes me miss the days when I would code them with HTML. It was slow going, but at least there was only one platform.

The only draw for me right now with Instagram is the forced constraint of a square photo. It seems like a decent challenge to try to make something interesting with that constraint.