How to make existing nuclear power plants safe.

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nuclrplntToday’s nuclear power plants are actually the most green power sources available yet the process of releasing the power of the atom can be the most dangerous thing on the planet.

As we found with Fukushima, one of the major causes of meltdown is the loss of power.

Loss of power??  In a power plant?  Funny, but yes.  In the event of a disconnection from the power grid, a nuclear plant automatically shuts down because the massive power being generated has nowhere to go.  When the generator shuts down, the only power source to keep the pumps flowing to keep the nuclear fuel rods cool comes from diesel generators.  If those generators are not operational or run out of fuel, then a meltdown is eminent.

The obvious solution is to keep the reactor running at lower power levels and send the steam to run a smaller generator.  Allow any unused portion of the steam to bypass the generator and be condensed and reused normally.  The smaller generator would be able to power all the systems needed to allow the plant to run in a self-sustaining mode until the grid comes back up or indefinitely if necessary.  No diesel generators would be necessary. Existing plants can be easily and inexpensively retrofitted.

It pains me to think that engineers haven’t come up with a similar plan that is both simple and elegant.

I give this idea freely to the internet in the spirit of making the world a better place.

No Cuts Please!

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cuttingThere was a time, back in the day, WAAAY back in elementary school, when we learned that cutting in line was not acceptable.

“Hey!  No Cuts!” we would say when someone tried to walk into the front of the line ahead of those of us who waited patiently.

It saddens me to see that that life-lesson is no longer taught.  My daily commute to work never ceases to raise my ire as I spend a very long time waiting in a 3 mile long line at the highway off-ramp just to see people zoom past me and cut into line way up in front.   Each person who does so makes the rest of us have to wait even longer.  Feel the burn!

So when did this become acceptable behavior?  Did they not learn that cutting in line is evil?  Just because they are illegal aliens doesn’t mean they have a license to be crude.

Do they feel that that is OK because they are encased in steel and glass and are protected from repercussion from us nice people?   After all, what can we do about it?  We should not allow them to do it by keeping the line tight.  That is expecting too much skill from the masses.  Besides,  Cutters are often extremely insistent.

So what is to be done?  Am I jousting at windmills? Should I give up being nice and become one of the cutters?  It would sure save me a lot of time waiting in line with commoners to just jump in up front.  Screw everyone else.  I’m the only one on this planet who matters anyway so make way bitches! Coming through whether you like it or not!

Dreamblog – Mansion Job

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I was exploring the grounds off a massively large and apparently abandoned sprawling house complex. It seems more commercial than a residential building. At one point I was inside and wandered into a room with some people in it. It was a strangely angled room. They told me to leave so I walked past a door and toward another.

As I opened the exit door, the guy stopped me. He asked why I chose that door. I told him by the angle in the wall I could tell that it was obviously the way down the stairs. He was impressed that I chose wisely and asked me to stay.

I was met by a scientist who brought me to a kitchen pantry. We walked into the pantry and stood in the middle. The floor started to descend like an elevator. When we stopped we were in a very messy living/lab area. There was trash all over the floor and at least 7 children of different ages. The area was quite large.

I was lead to the attached laboratory area. I can’t remember what I saw there. They were thinking about offering me a job there though I didn’t know exactly what I would be doing. I looked around at the mess and thought that I would enjoy cleaning up the place. Outside was a large swimming pool. I figured I might be cleaning, taking care of the kids and perhaps helping out in the lab when possible.

I realized that I had not gone to work at my old job today. They would be wondering what was going on. I went to tell them that I was looking at another job. They told me OK but be back to work by Friday.

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This dream is probably related to my current life. I just spoke to the Mayor of the nearby small town in which I belong to the community band. He mentioned that he may have a job for me and will send me an email about it later. I have no idea what it is but am anxious about it considering I’ve been at my current new job for only 3 months and it pays well and is tolerable. Still curious to see what the other has to offer.

The war against bullies is bad for the children

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bllsI’m tired of hearing people complain about bullies.  How the children need to be taught not to be bullies.  It’s a big waste of time and money right out of the heads of bleeding heart liberals.

There is no point in trying to hold back the waves with a sand wall.  As long as children are in proximity to other children, there will be bullying.   It is human nature and there is little that can be done about it.  Step back and look at the overall picture here.

Back before the world sucked, we were taught how to deal with bullies and it was NOT to go tell the teacher.  You either stood up to them and kicked their ass, made friends with them or avoided them.   I tended to make friends with them.  How excellent was it to have a bully on your side?  Most!

I just saw a story on the local news with some teenager whining about being bullied.  Bitch!  Man up!  There is a whole world of bullies out there and you need to learn how to live with them.  They will be competing with you in the workplace and tattling on them to the boss isn’t the right solution.

In a perfect world it might be possible to brainwash everyone into a happy stupor but that’s not going to happen. Human nature will prevent Utopia from ever existing.

The real solution is not trying to teach kids to be nice.  The solution is teaching them how to live in the real world and dealing with bullies is a necessary skill.

Where is the rest of the Internet?

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lkngI often go searching the internet for things that interest me but often have a hard time finding anything on a subject.  Yes, they are obscure, specialized and sometimes perverted things but it blows my mind that there aren’t other people out there with similar ideas.

I know I’m not the only person on the planet with certain interests.  I can’t help feeling that the search engines are censoring our results and we are barely scraping the surface of the web.  It can be extremely frustrating to not find satisfying results on subjects you feel strongly about.

There is a thing known as the Dark Web or Deep web but finding it is rather difficult.  I guess I’ll have to make it my business to find the entrance.  Going there can be scary because who knows who is watching.  Anonymity has long since disappeared on the internet and big brother is watching at all times.

The internet as we all know it is highly filtered.  The olden days of the Wild West are over.  You see what they want you to see and nothing more.

Money for Panhandlers

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pnhndlerLike most cities, San Antonio has a large number of panhandlers at major intersections.  Technically Illegal here it doesn’t stop anyone.  What are the cops going to do anyway?

In the past I have been, like most people, indifferent to them.  We look the other way like they don’t exist.  It always bothered me to do that though.

During the 10 months I took off from work I was not homeless or even wanting for money but as I searched for a new job I felt a connection to the plight of the homeless and uneducated people out there.  Even with education and skills, the competition for a good job is still incredible.  When you are homeless, it can be virtually impossible to pull yourself out of the gutter.

It also bothers me to give to those who are intentionally making panhandling their full-time job.  A person can make quite a bit of money playing on the sympathy of the common motorist.  It’s still far from the American Dream.

Many are disabled or even veterans unable to make it in the real world.  Some just elderly and without family for support.

I’ve decided that no matter what their issue, I think it wouldn’t hurt me to help them out.  I keep a stash of $5 bills in easy reach so I can make their lives a little better.  Whether they are seriously down and out or just eeking out a living they are very appreciative and I feel good about making their day easier.

I wish there was a better way for them and in many cities there is but at least I can do more than just feel bad for them or even be annoyed about what they are doing.  You only live once and when that life sucks to the max, it’s nice to have someone care enough to help you out a little.

Rain Barrel

rnbrrlI’ve always wanted a rain barrel but never got around to it.  Now I wonder why I waited so many years.

I picked up a perfect plastic barrel at a farm supply store near Seguin.  It only cost $28.00 after tax and fit easily in the back of my car.

I brought it home and put it on two nicely leveled cinder blocks I had sitting around.  The top of the barrel has a nice square hole over which I stretched some windows screen on a wooden frame made by cutting pieces of wood at 45 degree angles. This will keep out the debris and mosquitoes.  Don’t like mosquitoes.  The top of the barrel also has a slot where the overflow can pour.  I just had to shorten the downspout from the gutter over the garage and put the angled end back.  Too easy.

It took me around 30 minutes to set up.  All I have left to do is get a faucet and attach it near the bottom.  Can’t wait for some rain now.

I am blessed

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blssdlfYou know… I’ve spent 20 years wallowing in depression and it wasn’t until just now that I realized that I am living a truly blessed life.  I was so caught up in loneliness and self-pity that I failed to notice that compared to the majority of people on this planet, I am incredibly blessed.

Yeah,  I don’t have a family or satisfying friendships but as far as the American Dream goes;  I’ve got it.

During my time of not working, I kind of identified with the jobless, scrambling masses.  Of course I wasn’t one of them but still I felt a connection.  It gave me time to see life from the other side of where I lived.  So many people are living paycheck to paycheck.  They are barely eeking out an existence and struggling to meet life’s basic requirements of food, shelter, transportation and health.  I have at least three friends who are in that category.

It made me realize just how blessed I am.  I’ve never had to struggle for my existence.  I can almost say that life has handed me everything I need and more.  We were not rich when I was a child.  After my father died when I was 9, my mom, brother and myself lived on social security.  We didn’t have a lot but we had everything we needed and more.

After I graduated from school I worked and attended college for my associates degree.  I continued on towards an engineering degree but got into the emerging computer industry.  Jobs were easy to find and paid quite well.  I bought a house, a Porsche, a BMW, an RV and whatever else I wanted.   Life was easy.

Perhaps not having a wife and family contributed to my easy success and I’m not sure I miss having them.  It costs a lot to have a family.

In general, life gives me whatever I need.  I don’t have to go out and fight for things.  They just come to me.

I don’t intend to be bragging about my easy fortune but I do want to remind myself about it because life really is good for me.  I only wish I could get those wasted 20 years back.  There’s no doubt that wisdom comes with age.  It is unlikely that I could have recognized my good life back then anyway.  The important thing is that I go forward and appreciate what I have accomplished.  I am blessed and I appreciate it.

Being Black is a choice

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blkmn1Stories about white police viciously beating black men are all over the news these days.  It may appear that these cops are deliberately targeting black men but the simple statistics show that there are more white cops than black.  There are more bad black men than there are white.  Simple logic dictates that there will be white cops busting black men.

There is no doubt that cops should not use unnecessary force on any man white or black.  There is definitely a problem here but this is not the root cause of this problem.  We are overlooking the fact that these bad black men should not be acting in such a manner that puts them in the position to be arrested in the first place.

There are two basic categories we can observe:
1. Men who are black
2. Black Men

There are Men who are Black:  Those men who are classy, educated, trustworthy, contributors to society.  These men are regular people who just happen to have black skin.

Then there are Black Men.  Men who not only have black skin but insist on ACTING black.  These are the ones who are out on the street wearing hoodies in the summer, tattooed and carrying weapons.   Here is where your choice comes in.  You don’t have to do that.  Acting this way will get you in trouble in one way or another.  If you want to be treated like you deserve then act accordingly.   If you insist on acting black then don’t complain when the consequences occur.

There is no racial discrimination due to the color of your skin.  We got over that decades ago.  The racial discrimination we are currently experiencing is the result of the way you are acting.  Normal people don’t like that and therefore have a bad opinion of you.

So stop it.  Be nice.  Be good.  Life is too short to be angry.

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