Happy Birthday Neo!

p1040510Well here’s a surprise for Neo when he logs in.

Yes, folks, it is a special person’s birthday today, and whilst he’d never tell you and he’d want no fuss, I think as friends we’d just want to tip our hates to the man from Nebraska and to say, in an understated, Jimmy Stewart sort of way, ‘Happy Birthday Pilgrim’.

I’d like to say thank you to Neo for this blog and the range of stuff he covers (how does one guy know all this?), for his generosity to the rest of us, and for his friendship. He’s just there when you need him – and you can’t actually want more in a friend. No fuss, no bother – indeed if there ever was a guy who is really ‘no drama’ you don’t need to look beyond our host here.

Knowing he wouldn’t mention it, and fearing that he might feel a bit like ‘another year older’ sort of thing, I thought I’d get in early and say thank you to my dearest friend – and give the rest of you the chance to make him blush (for a change).

And yes, folks, it’s five o’clock somewhere – so lets head for Margaritaville


Competence, Personified.

Some background for you today about the two of us here at Nebraska Energy Observer. Jess and I ran across each other the end of June last year, and quickly found that we are a good bit alike, in our views, in our faith, even in our family structure. We built on that a very wonderful friendship, and built it both very solidly and very quickly. Like most friends, we talk to each other quite a lot, about nearly everything, and sometimes it even bleeds over into our blogs, although we do try not to do too much of that. Today being an exception.

Incidentally, that picture, which is a good likeness, was drawn by her niece, who is obviously a very talented artist.

Anyway, last summer we were chatting and Jess mentioned that she was thinking about applying for a PA job at the local university. If you didn’t happen to know, Jess trained as a teacher, specializing in early elementary, and by all accounts was very good at it. When she moved back to England from Wales, to be near her family, she of course had to quit and hadn’t found another job yet.

I encouraged her to go after the job, my thinking being that it would be good for her to get out more and meet some new people. She did, and didn’t get the job but, they offered her a different part-time one which she took. Jess, being Jess, did a superlative job and soon she was telling me that she had been asked to fill in with a senior university official while his PA was on maternity leave.

While all this was going on she was maintaining her blog (if you don’t read All along the Watchtower you’re missing one of the great Christian blogs) and writing at least one post a day herself. We all know how hard that can be, so we understand that it’s more than it sounds like. She also as we kept conversing became my dearest friend, the one that I take all my problems to. And yes, behind the scenes, she’s exactly like she is on the blogs.

This was pretty close to the time when I was having some internet problems, and I asked Jess to cover me here, which she did wonderfully well. Which she did again while I was gone at Christmas, and last month when I was gone for my sister’s funeral. As she took on some other authors, we hoped that she would be able to write more here, which has not been possible, but not through any fault of hers.

You see the PA job was made permanent for her, as near as I can tell her boss has told her several times that she is the best PA he ever had, which surprised her, I think, although it didn’t me. One thing that I envy greatly is that when she publishes here, I, of course, see the corrections and edits. Well that would be true if there were any, apparently she sits down and writes perfectly. Wish I did!

And so, we get to this week, and the Saga of Jessica continues, she had told me a bit ago that she had an evaluation coming up, she, in fact was slightly worried, as we all tend to be, and I told her that I thought she had nothing to worry about.

Boy, was I right.

She had her evaluation this week and I think they like her. She got promoted to an administrative position, with a raise that is a multiple of the salary I started my working life with.

And so, Jessica is a modest girl, who doesn’t like to blow her own horn, so I’m blowing it for her, as she sets off on a new phase of her great adventure. I keep telling her that I’m soon going to be saying, “I knew her when.” But, you know, one of the charming things about her is that she is as loyal as the day is long, and time permitting she will be contributing here as long as this blog (which we have come to call “our blog”) exists.

And I’m not sure how long I would last either without her help here, either.

In case, you haven’t figured it out, I am very, very proud of her, and very proud that she is my friend.

In fact, she reminds me a good bit of Kate Hepburn in our Saturday feature, Beautiful, Brainy, Educated, Godly, and talks with a funny Akzent, :-)

Unfortunately, I couldn’t find True Grit, Jess, so this will have to do.

 Love you, dearest friend, and partner

FYI: Nebraska Tech Site

I just thought I’d mention in passing that I just took my company site live. It’s not done, much to do yet but I would appreciate it, if you took a look around and tell me either there or here what you think. You will find that the store is a truncated Amazon catalog, it will get better, as I have time.

I intend it to be a more focused (on electrical and energy) than this. Maybe I have the discipline to do that. :-)

For the moment, the articles are some appropriate ones that I have crossposted from here. Enjoy.

Here is the link: Nebraska Tech. Blogspot.com

nebraskattitude: Conservatives FAIL Online – Please Read & Share!

My neighbor over at Nebraskattitude published this yesterday. I could not agree more, This is my  800th post, and I often wonder why I bother. I, like Shelly. work damned hard on these, to make them correct and fairly well written. While my audience is different from Nebraskattitude’s we have things in common. First we’re conservative, second we often feel like we’re working in a vacuum and mostly we’ve got something to say, that need to be heard.

The election is less than 50 days away, boys and girls, and if we don’t get to work, we could very well lose it. Normally, that wouldn’t matter all that much but, these are not normal times. I’ve got 322 followers according to WordPress, which considering I write fairly serious, unfun posts is not too bad. maybe but, you know what, judging by my comments and likes, while you may be following me, I could just as well tell it to the wall. One thing I agree with Shelly on, is Romney not the best candidate we could have had but, he’s the one we got, and he’s a hell of a lot better than Obama. If you can’t see that, you’re nothing but a fool.

We are watching direct attacks on American soil now; what is it going to be like after 4 more years on Obama? Read more of this post

20, 000 Thanks


20,000 times somebody has opened a page here. Wow! I’m pretty amazed that anybody wants to know what a broken down old lineman thinks but, there you are. Over 3600 times somebody has had something to say about something here. Thank you so much.

We are moving into the home stretch of the presidential campaign, as I write this the aftermath to the Democratic convention is on my TV, you all know how important I think this election is. Not to belabor the point, this election will decide if America remains America, or becomes just another European slave state. It’s that important. The election won’t be the final answer of course, we will have to stay awake for years and continue the mission. This is one of our quests, the restoration of the American Dream. It’s one but it’s not a stand alone dream.

If you’ve been reading here any amount of time, you know what I believe but maybe this would be a good place to summarize.

First I believe in the power and responsibility of the smallest of minorities, the individual. In our system the individual is the sovereign unit of the electorate, not Christians, not atheists, not democrats, not republicans, not any group at all. The Individual. Every thing else flows from that, the mission of the government is to protect the individual. That’s what liberty is all about. From this come several things.

  • The underpinning of the United States (in fact, the free world) is the Judeao-Christian heritage of the God of the individual. We each and every one of us is created in the image of our God. That doesn’t mean that you can’t be a good American if you are an atheist, a Buddhist, a Moslem or anything else. It means that you must have a morality that recognizes that objective good and evil exists, and that the individual is sovereign with non-revocable (God-given is the usual term) rights, until you infringe on the rights of others.
  • Only capitalism (real free-market capitalism) is consistent with Liberty. It’s my responsibility to provide for mine and it’s yours to provide for yours. The major point about this is that it not a zero sum game, the economy will grow, I can remember when super high tech in the consumer market meant color TV, look at the tech field now. If you are growing your business by lobbying the government for grants, or doing favor for politicians, or trying to regulate your competitors out of business, you are my enemy, because you are not a capitalist. Remember, you can get rich, you can also starve, it’s up to you, not me, not the government. This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t look out for the unfortunate, or the unlucky. As a Christian it is my duty to do good works both individually and as a church. I believe it’s also my duty as a human being, but it is not my duty, in either case, to have the government take my money to support you because you are too lazy or self important to work.. Get a job.
  • The very first right is the Right to Life. I don’t care who you are you do not have the right to take a life except to save a life. There can be no justification for that. I hear a lot about abortion in case of rape, sorry, no. I’m sorry you were raped and the animal that committed the crime is beneath contempt but, the child that was conceived from it is not at fault, that child has a much right to his life as you do. Incest, is the same thing, different verse. Abortion to save the life of the mother, maybe, if, and only if, that is truly the case, it can be proper to take a life to save a life but, we can do amazing things for premature fetuses these days, think long and hard. By the way, the father has interest in the child as well, the decision is not all about you, it’s about all three of you. In a related matter, if you don’t want to have a child, don’t have sex. It works every time, ok, for us Christians there is one exception.
  • I have a right to my property, whether I earned it or someone gave it to me. It’s mine, if you want it, go earn your own, you do not have the right to steal it nor do you have the right to delegate the government to steal it for you. The government has legitimate powers, which we have delegated to them, in the Constitution, as written and amended. As an American, I have consented to be taxed for these things, and only these things, I have not consented to be taxed to support the lazy, or educate the world. When it goes beyond its enumerated powers the government is a thief, stealing my time, stealing my money, stealing my property.
  • I believe it is our responsibility as the leader of the free world to defend liberty. Where we can, especially with allies, but without if necessary. We are incomparably the most powerful nation in the history of the world, many in the world derive their living by depending on our market. As has been said, we are the indispensable nation for nearly the entire world, we have the duty to make sure trade continues world-wide, both for our benefit and for the worlds. The Chinese are much better off than were 20 years ago because of us, and if you read history, you will find that freedom follows a free market and so does peace. That does not mean we should engage in mission creep or nation building, we cannot make people free, they are going to have to do the heavy lifting of taking the risks and suffering the pain to make themselves free, even as we did.

You’ve read a good deal lately about what I believe as a Christian, so I’m not going to reiterate it here, today. I will note that it forms the basis of my belief structure. Which could be summed up as: You get what you have earned.

Life is hard. Sometimes life is unfair, get over it and continue the mission.


Mostly for Those I Subscribe to

Tux, the Linux penguin

Tux, the Linux penguin (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As I’ve mentioned to many of you, my machine is as best obsolescent, most would say obsolete. It also is short of RAM, I can put more in, although not much, and it’s pretty expensive. I do like the machine, it’s an IBM all in one and solid as all get out. So I’ve been swearing at it a lot and casting about for a solution, I think I’ve found one but, it changes the way I work.

I went a few months ago to a version of Linux/ Ubuntu that helped although it did not fail gracefully, sill it was better. but still it left me trying to keep an eye on both Thunderbird and Firefox as well as whatever else I’m needing to run-some of those are pretty heavy as well. Add to that the corporate computerized PBX component and firewall and there were days that Icouldn’t go two hours without rebooting.

We were talking about this last week, and we remember that a few years ago we had an obsolete laptop that we had loaded a very light version of Linux called called Anti-X that worked neatly (until the hard drive died!). So yesterday when the whole system wouldn’t work we changed this system to it. I’m still learning how to run it but, from your perspective here the first findings.

I’m no longer running either Foxfire or Thunderbird for blogging purposes. Instead I’m running Google Chrome, yes I, like many of you, don’t care for all the information gathering Google does, but still. I now have four tabs that open when I start the program-

  1. My Dashboard
  2. Google Reader
  3. G-Mail
  4. Google +

Of course I could add Facebook and Twitter and do on occasion. In addition I have a pop up running on the inbox which tells me that I have mail and the first line or so.

If you’ve run Linux, you know that one of its features is multiple workspaces, this one has four, and the e-mail widget works across all of them-doesn’t mean I can always break away from what I’m doing but, at least I might know it’s there.

I had this configuration (roughly) on my old OS and wouldn’t run fora half hour before crashing-now it loses a page once in a while when I’m in another workspace. This machine is doing things that I have never been able to do with it before.

What’s this mean to you? A few things, if you notice that I’ve unfollowed you, it doesn’t mean that I’m not reading you, mad at you or anything else. It means that my inbox is ridiculous and I might tick the wrong box but I’m going more and more to working the reader. I just can’t keep up with 100-200 e-mails that blogging generates plus business and personal business, I dumped about 3000 last week that I wanted to follow up on but couldn’t find time. maybe with a machine functioning better, I’ll do better with that too.

So thanks, to you all.


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