Vol. 17, No. 05 – Nov 29 – Dec 12, 2023 – As I See It

Costs for the water treatment facility project, known as VenturaWaterPure (coverage in previous issues), had been estimated at $374.4 million. The latest estimate is $556.9 million.

This should not come as a surprise. Government projects have an “estimated” cost that just allows initial funding but never seems to be enough for a finished project. Initial funding allows projects to get started, but when money runs out (and the only other recourse is to abandon them) they just throw in more money.

The decline of local news in the United States is increasing. The nation has lost one-third of its newspapers and two-thirds of its newspaper journalists since 2005.

An average of 2.5 newspapers closed each week in 2023 compared to two a week the previous year. Most are weekly publications, in areas with few or no other sources for local news.

At its current pace, the country will hit 3,000 newspapers closed in two decades sometime next year, with just under 6,000 remaining. This is why it is very important to support our advertisers, as it’s support along with some help from those who donate that keeps us publishing.

Some of the funniest shows on TV are commercials that aren’t meant to be funny. Especially the ones with products that aren’t available anywhere else except on TV, so they don’t have any specific retail value.

They go something like this: “These 12 pots and pans usually sell for $23,125, but, if you order in the next 10-minutes (of course they have no idea when you saw the ad) you can buy them for only 5 payments of $29.95. But wait, there’s more if you order in the next 30 seconds you can have for only 4 payments of $29.95.”

Another one I like is a solar powered generator ad that says, “Order now and receive the solar panels for free.” It doesn’t work without the panels. That’s like saying “Order your new car in 10-minutes and receive a free engine.”

Guns in the news:

Gary police say a 3-year-old boy found a gun in his mother’s purse and accidentally shot his 2-year-old brother, fatally wounding him. What would happen if this mother was attacked, would she say, “just a minute while I get my gun out of my purse? Hard to imagine how this mother feels.

According to a national website that tracks gun violence at least nine mass shootings rocked cities across the nation over last weekend, leaving five people dead and 56 wounded. The mass casualty shootings occurred at parties, outside of a nightclub and a convenience store, during a street game of dominoes (always a violent sport) and even at a community meeting on how to combat gun violence (is there some irony here?) Seattle Police Chief Adrian Diaz stated, “Honestly, this is really disturbing when you have victims who are trying to do an outreach effort, trying to help people out and get people on the right path and this is what they get hit with.”

Two men and one woman were fatally shot while another woman was being treated in a hospital trauma unit but was expected to survive. Authorities have said the shooting was a “suspected property dispute,” and the victims have property bordering that of the suspect. I think I saw this in an old cowboy movie.

The weekend violence upped the number of mass shootings in 2023 to 419, with still five months left in the year. An average of two mass shootings have occurred every day this year. In all of 2022, there were 647 mass shootings nationwide, slightly down from 690 that occurred in 2021.

Global average temperatures reached new highs over the past 10-12 months, breaking records in the steady march of a warming climate. It’s been warmer than at any time in recorded history and was likely warmer than any other time in 125,000 years, an analysis by Climate Central concluded. The Copernicus Climate Change group said it’s “virtually certain” that 2023 will be the hottest year in recorded history. Why, this could almost be considered to be “climate change!”

Of course, it’s wonderful that some people kidnapped by Hamas are being released (traded actually). I hope the 3-year old girl who saw Hamas kill her parents are amongst them and she has family to take care of her.

An actress I met assured me her real ambition was to be a waitress at a coffeehouse.
~ Woody Allen

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