Month: January 2015

#whiteprivilege  does it really exists?

#whiteprivilege does it really exists?

White privilege…

1f0447b2e4eecfd96a5ac78ad943cca3This is obnoxious hate speech, and here is why!

While working, I often listen to talk radio.  Most of the stuff you hear is provocative, so you will listen past the commercials.

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Some college professor made the statement that white men are all privileged and she would not even call on them in class, as they did not disserve her attention. Wow!  What a thing to say much less think!

Yes, I am white.

My great grandfather was a German immigrant and my great grandmother was from Italy.  My grandmother who passed in her 40’s was from New York and her parents were from London.  Her line traces back to Winston Churchill in some circuitous route, while my fathers parents came across from the old country much earlier.

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When I was a young person, I came up with the idea of mowing yards for spending money, as my parents were certainly not wealthy.  Dad was a mechanic for the airline who during its death throws absconded with the retirement money of its employees, which became “golden parachutes” for the elites.

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I was not allowed to use the “family” lawn mower for this task so the first thing I had to do is come up with a lawn mower of my own.  Garage sales provided me with broken down equipment that I learned to repair and keep going while traversing the neighborhoods looking for lawns that needed upkeep.  $2 for the front and $2 for the back was the average fare.

By the end of the first summer, I had acquired 3 lawn mowers, an edger and purchased several rakes, brooms and other implements to take care of my customers.

The following summer allowed me to start a savings account as well as allow for popcorn money for the occasional movie.

By my senior year of high school, I was able to purchase my first car, which opened up different types of occupations that did not require as much sweat.

My first real confrontation with my white privilege status was when I went to try and work for Sears.  I had taught myself electronics at a very early age and had found employment at the local TV repair shop.  After working there, I could not stomach how they took advantage of people so I left to find something else.

Sears used to have a really good name and the service center was not too far from my home.  I went through the interview and was given the tour of the service area.  There in the back were several technicians, one white and the rest black.  This mattered not to me as I see people as people and judge by character.  If you are nice to me, I will be nice to you, end of story.

I had to prove my ability to repair sets, which I did rather handily.  While I was wrapping up the manager went to talk with his boss on my behalf.  He brought me out of the back into a private area and told me “he would love to have me but, his boss had just told him that he had to hire people that were non-white.”

This was my first brush with my “white privilege!”

This left a bad taste in my mouth.  I stopped spending money with Sears, as I believe one should be hired for their ability to perform, and not their skin color.

I went to work for another independent and found that they too screw their customers selling them things that they do not need.  I found that practice vile and gave my two weeks.

After finding a small place with rent that I could afford I opened up my own shop and for years, repaired TV’s for many folks.

Owning your own business is tough as one tends to work eighteen hours a day, at least.

There was a transition happening in the industry which brought the price of televisions down.  The transition was directly related to offshore workers building them.  When Zenith left American plants and went over seas; that was really the death knoll for television repair.  Zenith and Curtis Mathes were the holdouts. When they too went out of the USA, it was over.

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Until that date the television was not only an apparatus, it was also a piece of furniture.  That too changed as plastic housings replaced wood and TV carts replaced cabinetry.

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Customers would call for service or bring their set in and while I had it, they would be out shopping for something newer.  In many cases when I would call with the estimate, they would have already purchased something newer and would abandon the set.  The law back then was you could not sell their property.  I had to send registered letters and after 90 days, I could junk it.

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I would place them into a storage unit until I had a 12 X 30-storage unit full to the door with televisions that I could do nothing with, other than junk them.

I closed the shop and went to work in the business machine industry for sometime and eventually through my hobby got into computers.  By 1982, I was well ensconced in the data processing field and by the early 90’s was managing IS departments.

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My hiring practices were such that if you could do the job and had the appropriate attitude I would hire you.  I was admonished by HR to look at people of color first, and consider them over their white counterpart.  I hired many of all races but, I did my best to be color-blind, as I do not think that your skin color should garner you any favoritism, or should hold you back!

Just as your skin color should not be a factor in being hired it should not be a factor in firing you, but it is.  One fellow that I hired developed a horrible attitude as the years progressed.  This man would go out of his way to anger me, which he admitted to at his departure dinner from the company.  He was doing his best to try to get me to call him something other than his name, so he could sue the company.

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He found other employment and was leaving to go manage some group somewhere.  At his going away dinner he ask me with the whole department there, “how do you hold your temper?”  I looked at him blankly, whatever do you mean?  “I have been trying to piss you off for months and never once did you even loose your smile!”  The folks at the tables jaws dropped, as he admitted his plan and was now genuinely curious how I maintained my countenance.

Had I been a racist, I am guessing that he might have been successful.  I am interested in your character, not your color; and certainly not your heritage. 

Today I work with many different companies as well as different government agencies.  They too still have to this date programs in place that business of minority status “must be considered first” before someone of “non-minority status, or white privilege!”

My customers that I get today have tried those methods, and have been disappointed time after time and finally call me.   Once I get a customer, they see the difference for themselves and I do not have to solicit them after that.  When they need my services, they call.

It is not my skin color, which earns me business; it is my character!  I do what I say that I will do and I stand behind my work.  I treat folks as I want to be treated and I genuinely care.

Those who foment racism are themselves most likely the racist in the room.  Knowledge is key to being anything that you want to be.  Knowing who you are is a good first start.  Don’t believe the lies, most people of character are color blind.

To the uber liberal feminist white hating professor; you should get out more.   I fear for the country when people of this ilk are teaching, molding young minds and spewing out their hate and bigotry from unfounded diatribes!

I too have a dream; that we as a people will learn from history; that we will know from whence we came and endeavor to correct the mistakes of the small-minded bigots of the past.  It is easier to believe the lies than think outside the box, learn for yourself that people promote the lies because they are a comfortable place to hide or they promote an agenda, that is fallacious at best.

The simple facts are that there are a privileged class of folks.  Color does not enter into the algorithm however.  Adding color to the equation makes it play better and easier to sell, like the fictitious war on women.  Nice sound bite, but untrue!

-Best to you and those that you care about!

 Copyright 2015 Timedok All rights reserved!

 www.TimeDok.com

Leave me Alone!

Leave me Alone!

Leave me Alone!

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Those were the words spoken by an elderly person, in the next bed over from the person who I was visiting.  “G..D!  G..D!  G…D!  Just leave me alone!”

Talking with my friend who had suddenly found himself in the need for assistance, he was put into a room with another elderly man who could no longer care for himself or, his kids got tired of messing with him.

My heart went out to this person. 

Think about this for a moment.  No one ever thinks about the progression of life.  We take for granted that life will simply stay consistent until we are hobnobbing with angels with harps and we hope that when that happens and we are given a harp, that magically we will know how to play it!

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Maybe you think that you will be alive one moment and with former family the next.  Maybe you think you will be with God after the “sting of death” and all of the mysteries of life will be made known to you.

Life runs in-congruent with our ideas of it, most of the time however; as there are no crystal balls that actually do anything other than collect dust.  If there were, there would be no lottery, or gambling of any sort, as the same folks would always be winning. No one other than god knows your future.

Fortune-teller

As the guy in the next bed was fussing at the staff, the reason for the turmoil is that they were forcing him to shave.  The rules as told to the “keepers of the aged” were that they must be bathed, shaved and not appear to be neglected should some inspector come around.  I do not know “who” inspects such places or if they were worried about family actually coming for their obligatory Sunday after church visit.

When do you loose your rights as an individual?

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There is an entire industry that has been created for, “taking care of the elderly.”  What they are really doing is taking care of their bank account or so it would seem.

One elderly man put his wife into assisted living due to her advanced Alzheimer’s.  He was her medical proxy as well as the person who took care of her needs.  He was there every day; he dressed her, took care of her needs and only left for the night after she was in bed.  When the facility where she was had a significant rate increase, he objected.  Not too long after that, he came to visit her to find a multi-page letter on her bed informing him that they were suing to be her legal guardian, thus making all decisions for her and taking over their joint bank account.

This 84 year old man was forced to hire an attorney to fight the home and retain control of her care as well as their money!

This was a protracted court case and the judge found in favor of the husband but not before he was out an extra $10K as well as forced to pay the extra charges that the home went up per month during the entire time of the trial.  How would you like this to be your battle at 84 years of age?!

It turns out that this type of activity is common with “homes.”  If there is money involved, they do everything that they can to get it all!

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There are lawyers who do this type of work, day in and day out and somehow manage to put their head on their pillow at night, and manage to sleep!

We do not know what tomorrow holds.

We get up every morning expecting a day pretty much like the one that we just had and than one day, something is wrong.  There is a new pain, or it becomes harder to bring up a memory or you place your wallet or keys in the kitchen cabinet, or fridge.

If the nursing home is not a sad enough story, we have funeral homes.

Thousands of dollars for a casket, thousands for a simple cremation, these folks are right up there with used car salespeople.

Those people however are not messing over the deceased, they are screwing the folks who are dealing with loss and, when emotions are involved you can be so easily manipulated it is unreal!

When my mother passed, she had gone to the hospital after suffering a heart attack.  Folks if you live in Arkansas, learn from this!  She had subscribed to an air flight service that if you have an emergency and need to be airlifted out; you have already paid for the cost.   One morning after taking a nitro pill and having the pain subside, she knew that she was in trouble.  She called the service that sent and ambulance who then took her to an area where the helicopter could land.  It was obvious that she had suffered a heart attack but was stable.  The care flight people took her to a hospital that did not have a cardiologist on staff.

The ER doctor anxious to perform a surgery badgered her into allowing them to place a stent in one of her arteries.  During the process, they ruptured the artery, which was the beginning of the end for my mother.  By the time I could get there, she had undergone multiple surgeries, and doctors from Little Rock had been flown in.

This was made known to me by one of the witnesses on the form, that they had to really badger her to allow this.

The Cardiologist from Little Rock informed me in the hallway to the ICU, with all sorts of people around, “Your mother is not going to make it!  You need to allow us to terminate life support.”

“In the truest sense of the word, I was Gob-Smacked!”   Her kidneys had shut down, she was bleeding out of every orifice that one has, and if by some miracle she had managed to live, she would have brain damage, lost her legs as the circulation had been cut off from them too long, and would need respiratory care for life!  Now remember that we had an audience as everyone that had family in ICU was riveted to the conversation and I could actually feel their stares!

I asked for a second opinion and walked away!

After a sleepless night wrestling with God, and another round of “what if,” the decision was made to let her go.  A technical description of how this was to happen, was dictated to me by a person of the hospital, which was as cold and sterile as the morgue itself.

Shortly “two hours or so” after her death, I got a phone call from some funeral home demanding instructions what to do with the body.  Time is money after all!  My mothers’ desire was cremation but mine was to bury her.  During the “sole searching,” they embalmed her for $2000.00.   The next day I was informed of that, while I was signing the paperwork to have her cremated for another $3000.00 and then there was transportation from the funeral home to the crematorium that had to be paid for.

Lesson learned, plan for your own funeral so your kids do not have to. 

So, what do you do with an aged family member?

Where my grandfather was concerned he came to stay with us and became part of the family until he passed many years later.  He was actually a blessing as he was a kind man who had been generous his whole life, worked hard and raised his family with integrity.

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Did he cause issues within the family dynamic?  From time to time but, who didn’t?  When there are people involved, there are issues.  Family is family and you just “do!”

My cousins decided that they could no longer take care of their selves so they searched for, found and signed up for an assisted living place.  They had a room, their own bathroom and a microwave, small fridge and of course TV and books.  While there, the meds were dispensed per script, and care was given as needed to bathing and what have you.  There were three meals and the rooms and facility were comfortable.

While visiting one day my cousin pointed to an elderly man who was lost.  He was frustrated, angry and most probably dealing with feelings of deception.  His family told him to get dressed, that they were going to come get him and take him to lunch!  Lunch that one does not have to cook is always a good thing when you live by yourself.

They brought him to this facility, where they sat in the cafeteria and had lunch.  When lunch was over they left him there with his new “keepers” as they went back to gather some of his belongings and liquidate the rest.

My cousins witnessed the spectacle and shook their heads while telling the story.  The man was truly lost and anger was the least of his issues, I am certain that he felt betrayed.

I cannot begin to fathom his anger and feelings of betrayal! The fact that he was upset tells you that whoever he was, he still was.

Another “friend” had to put her mother into assisted living and everything was going good until she was told that she could not have her dog there.  At this, the elderly lady said, forget it, take me back to my house.  Little to her knowledge, most of her belongings were already gone, between the relatives and the Goodwill, her home was a shell; ready for the realtor.  There was no going home.

Working with people who foster pets I have also learned that while the kids are happy to get the car, junk and revenue from the house, the pets are another story.  One such pet was a 16 year old cat that belonged to a lady that went into a nursing home, no room for the cat!  Folks, 16 year old cats do not adjust to new homes very well.  This cat was scared and did not show well.  Had I not already had animals, I would have given her a home just to let her hide under the bed and maybe come out once she felt safe.

m-WOMAN-WITH-CAT-980x645 102 year old women battling to save her cat from being taken away..

During the human lifetime, many animals will go through their life.  The animal’s life on the other hand will only see one owner, if lucky.

What kinds of people abandon their parents?  What kinds abandon their parent’s pets?

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Regrettably, some of these are simply greedy people who see this as a way to rid them of a burden and get their hands on the estate before it is an estate.  The economy is tough so taking your parents home and car and “residual” might look like an answer to some.  

Some of these are people who had parents who did not plan for one reason or another and woke up one day unable to take care of themselves. (it happens)

There are too many ways today where a person can live in their own home until they are no longer alive.  Some on the other hand may want the social aspect of living in a community of people like themselves.  The bottom line is to plan today for tomorrow.

I do not know if there are facilities which allow cats or dogs but, if that is important factor in the life of your “loved one” I would look long and hard for such a place.

Making the transition from home, to an assisted living facility should be made as thoughtfully and carefully as if it was for yourself!  It is easy to be pragmatic when it is not you!  One can only truly honor their loved ones by taking care to make certain that they are well cared for and comfortable.

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Even if your loved one has Alzheimer’s, or some other form of dementia, touch, soothing conversation and a warm embrace will mean something to them.  I know one lady who crawled into the bed with her dying mother and held her for most of the night.  During this time her agitation was diminished, her breathing slowed and her racing pulse throttled back to normal.  Some part of her mother’s addled brain still recognized the comfort and kindness provided her, by her daughter.

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Once a man, twice a child….

As a child I learned to walk and then run

I became a man over night, while chasing the sun.

I straddled the cliffs and the peaks of life

And swam the streams of despair while fighting the good fight

 

Raising children to be strong both physical and of character

While leading by example and prodding, them onward.

 

My hair turning gray and my frame not as sturdy

My gate is for sure, not very trustworthy

 

Thinking back to much simpler times

When someone else led the course, or pointed the way.

 

Is it time to sit back and learn how to fish

Or chase little white balls with others like me?

 

The sounds I now make, sound much like my father

As well as the language, that sometime makes for unpleasant fodder.

 

My God knew me, before I was born

His plans for me however; are still an unknown.

 

The winter of life, I see in the distance; and know not whether to run,

Or simply embrace it.

 

Live life for today, as tomorrow is uncertain.

Learn to forgive and give thanks, for each memory you make

 

Once today is gone, its gone so don’t waste tomorrow

Spending time in the past for nothing can change it. 

 

Worry little, love often, and laugh whenever possible.

Life is but memories both yours, and those that you share

 -Me

-Best to you and those that you care about!

Copyright Timedok 2015 All rights reserved

http://www.timedok.com

#UAV #whitehouse #drone @johnmccaa @thewellsreport

#UAV #whitehouse #drone @johnmccaa @thewellsreport

A Day after I publish a blog about Drones and the need for media attention, what happens!?

https://thetimedok.com/2015/01/26/drones-or-uav-right-to-privacy-johnmccaa-thewellsreport-look-at-the-blog-follow-the-link/

Some idiot in Washington DC flies a Drone or UAV or Quad copter, take your pick, in super-restricted-airspace, and crash lands on the white house lawn!

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The president and staff are calling on the FAA….!?

There already is a no fly zone in Washington DC proper.  That goes for anything short of a paper airplane!  You cannot go into the nearest DC Radio Shack and buy one of their smallest little UAV’s and fly it outside the store without breaking the law!

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I for one am glad that this low-information person did it however, as now someone might do something about regulating where these things can fly; at a federal level.

This UAV could just as easily been controlled by a bad person wishing harm to the first family.  They did it at 3 AM which is already a no-no as these things are not supposed to be flown at night, even though they are equipped with night vision. Go Figure!

Since nobody asked me about this; here are some free consulting ideas for you.

As we know these are too small to be detected by radar and they literally fly under the radar so, how do we detect them?

These devices should-be-made to identify themselves in their video streamBy law, this video stream must not be encrypted in any way.  I wonder if a miniature transponder could be incorporated into the design and if so, what on earth would you use to detect and identify them?

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I have ideas on ways to detect these things, and disable them, or at least track them down but of course, nothing is free, and development time has a cost.  I even have thought of a way to design countermeasures for these things but again, need funding to make it happen.

So, is this a kick-starter, crowd funding idea, or is this a government grant idea?  

Do you realize how many tens of thousands of dollars it takes to get a patent?  If you want to protect your ideas in other countries you have to spend thousands for each and every country that somebody might put a plant and build your device.  This process needs to be fixed so the little guy can invent and keep his or her idea instead of some large corporation stealing it, which they do!

The media really needs to run with this story, as the people need an education!

-Best

#Asteroid 2004 BL86

#Asteroid 2004 BL86

Did you see it?

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Well, this is interesting news.

When I originally posted that the asteroid that passed by earth last year most probably had cousins, which we saw hit Russia and other parts of the globe, I was laughed at by the astronomical community!

https://thetimedok.com/2014/04/15/meteors-asteroids-and-other-heavenly-bodies/

Today we discover that Asteroid 2004 BL86 has a moon!

Folks it just makes sense.   That is how little dust particles become planets.

Just because your mathematical models do not support what is, does not mean that it is not.

Maybe you should put some new batteries in your old TI calculator, or throw away your slide rule and get with the program.

Feeling a little vindicated here, Thank You 2004 BL86 and those that discovered its moon!

Very Short Blog…

-Best

http://www.timedok.com

#Drones or #UAV & right to #privacy!  @johnmccaa @thewellsreport Look at the blog… follow the link.

#Drones or #UAV & right to #privacy! @johnmccaa @thewellsreport Look at the blog… follow the link.

Drones or UAV & Right to Privacy!

This is a story that needs telling, so kids with expensive toys do not get into trouble.

After arriving home, getting out of my car I heard a sound that I could not identify.  At first, I thought it some sort of gas leak until the sound changed pitch abruptly, causing me to search the sky.

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Hovering over my fenced back yard at about 20 to 30 feet was some sort of UAV, not a quad copter, more propellers.

As a Geek, I appreciate technology so my first thought was “wow,” that is somewhat cool!  As I watched, the craft made a turn to another’s backyard, and than another, and then it took off to the north.

What was the operator doing hovering this thing over peoples back yards?

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Posting about this on social media, one of my close friends noted that she had one over her back yard that day!

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This uav was just released for sale and talked about at the electronic convention in Las Vegas.  One wears it like a bracelet and if they want to take a selfie from the air; one removes it, activates it and tosses it into the air.  Control of it is with the phone and it has a camera that is good enough to take a quality picture or video.

Recently the news reported one of these things crashed on the Mexican Border loaded down with drugs.  Later we learned that they have been using them to get contraband into prisons.  If I were a bad guy, I can think of all sorts of things that could be done, looking through windows for unclothed people would be at the bottom of the list!

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View of New York From UAV

When I hear that the government had them that had the technology to peer into your open window from a mile away and count your freckles, I was concerned.  Floating in the pool last summer I saw one like in the picture below flying at altitude going from east to west; the silhouette was unmistakable.  There was no noise and had I not been looking up, I never would have noticed it.

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This flew over my house one summer day, going straight over DFW!  I was not aware that it was legal to fly these things in US air space.

What are the laws regarding Unmanned Aerial Vehicles?

Do we have the right to privacy?

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A newly released document reports a type of radar that allows someone to stand outside your house and know if you are home and where in the house you are.  I think something like this in wartime might be ok but, for anyone who can plop down $6000 to buy and use; this is another story.

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Above you see a camera in a fake smoke detector, to the right is just picture of different cameras that one might see.

For anyone to abridge your right to privacy without warrant should be illegal! That not only goes for electronic tapping of your communication but most certainly, for invading your private space with electronic surveillance techniques whether it be radar, covert eaves dropping measures and even a drone of any sort.  Too many good men and women died to give us freedom from many things and that includes an out of control government!  Technology is great but anything that violates someone; the user of such needs to be held accountable!

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Regarding the drones over the backyards, I am guessing that kids got them for Christmas, and did the first thing that came into their head, look in their neighbors fenced in yards and windows.

Allow me to be the first to put you on notice, this is an illegal activity and should it happen to anyone else, I would imagine a well placed stream of water from a garden hose would not do it any good, and may even render it inoperable.  When the perpetrator comes to fuss and or collect their property, you can then take them to task.  I just wonder what the law would say if this person came home with a busted nose, or pair of blackened eyes.  

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/volokh-conspiracy/wp/2014/09/25/state-legislation-governing-private-drone-use/

I am not sure what agency controls such things; as these fly too low for the FAA to get involved.  I think the local police would be your best bet, as this is nothing more than being a peeping tom.   

 Video the offence and take em to court.

Attn: John and David! This story really needs to hit the media, as it is really a matter of not knowing what they are doing is illegal.  They need to take them out of the neighborhood to fly them.  Since they have a good quality camera, what they capture could be illegal as taking pictures or video of people without their permission is in itself a crime; especially if you are invading their privacy in the process.

I have no idea what people will do with this technology but we really need to be on top of it to protect your rights.

We sacrifice enough of our privacy every day just to go to work.  Think about this, every intersection that you traverse has cameras that have the capability to capture your image.  They can also contain bio metric software so your unique personage can be tracked, patterns established and documented.  Your phone that you love so much “can be used” as a tracking device; to know exactly where you are, down to within a few feet of resolution.  The hell of that is that you pay for it!

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How much privacy do we have to sacrifice? 

A trip through the airport and, well this is what you give up for the privilege of flying.  A recent TSA whistle blower talked about how everyone wanted the job of the room where they view such pictures.  While there they laughed at peoples private parts. Do you feel safe?  Why is it that technology always seems to end up being used for perverse task or a weapon of some kind.  I can just imagine some twisted mind when encountering a new technology, “how could I use this as a weapon?”  Christians would say it is because we are a fallen people.

In public areas, the odds are good that security cameras are watching you and recording you.  At work, the odds are good that cameras are watching you.  Can your webcam be remotely activated, how about your own cameras for your own security system.  Recently we heard of a Russian web site where thousands of cameras were hacked and their contents displayed for the Russians to laugh at, while watching whatever is going on in front of them.

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http://www.v3.co.uk/v3-uk/news/2382511/russians-hacking-into-webcams-showing-live-footage-from-uk-offices-shops-and-baby-monitors

If you buy these things, make certain that you change all of the default usernames and passwords!

While this guy saw the light, there will be others that do not…

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A few years ago a school gave out laptops for kids to take home.  Some whistle blower let it be known that the cameras in the computers were being remotely turned on and people were watching children in their bedrooms or wherever the laptops happen to be.  Are we inherently evil?

Cameras are now so small that they are in pens, clocks, other everyday devices and you simply have to act as if someone is either watching you or recording you when you are out in public.  But what about your home?

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It is not my purpose to instigate paranoia.  Most people are not interesting enough to be spied on in the first place but, Orwell was on to something.  Take steps to make sure that your gadgets are secure and if you own and fly UAV’s, know that I will take steps to keep my private life private.  This blog is one way that I am doing that by making this issue known to many who simply don’t pay attention to such things.  It is my hope that my media contacts will find this interesting enough to do a story about.

George Orwell and 1984 Quotation

-Best to you and those that you care about!

Please feel free to “re-blog” as you see fit.  The more people that know about this the better off we all are. 

Copyright Timedok All rights reserved 2015

http://www.TimeDok.com

#tips #time and #family attn: #Brinkers

#tips #time and #family attn: #Brinkers

To Insure Prompt Service  T.I.P.S

Growing up I spent much time at the local Denny’s drinking coffee with friends and eating food that was hardly good for me.  As I became acutely aware of what you eat you become; I switched to salads and more healthy choices even though I was still eating at a place that would have fried the coffee it were possible.

While there, I made many friends out of managers, servers and even the cooks.  As the matter of fact for many years, the crew at the local Denny’s became just about a second family.

There were also the regulars who also became familiar faces and it was not long before we had this huge round table grouping in the back which contained many of the locals, off the clock staff and of course myself.  I learned quite a bit about people while doing more listening than talking.  You do not have to be rich to be happy was one life lesson that I have never forgotten.  Having money is nice, but not a requirement for happiness.

I was living paycheck to paycheck, in very humble surroundings with a total monthly rent of $200.  My transportation was nothing fancy and if I had not learned to work on them “every weekend” I would most certainly have been living back in the bedroom that I grew up in.

Today, many “generation X folks” go to school on their parents’ dime (tens of thousands of dollars) and expect the corner office, six-figure salary and a house like the one that they knew as a child.

I was not one of those that attended a place of “higher education,” at my parents’ expense.  I am what some would call a self-made man.  Having tasted living like the rich and famous through my childhood friends and tasted living in little more than a tin box I knew that I needed to set my sites on a standard that was obtainable but not so high that I would never make it.  Aim High was the Air force slogan but after talking with recruiters regimentation and I were strange bed fellows as I often march to my own drum beat.

Since I had taught myself electronics at eight years old, I went to work for the local television repair place where some OJT was happening.  Information then is nothing like today.  If I want to know about a subject today, Google gets me more than enough to sate my appetite.

As a young person, I never stopped thirsting for information. The encyclopedia was my constant companion along with the college dictionary.  I made friends with Dewy and haunted the library as time permitted.  My appetite for knowledge was voracious however; my focus was extensive.  Selectively I gave attention to subjects that always seemed a little out of my reach.  Mechanic type stuff was easy for me but that is not what I wanted to do day to day.

I had thirteen cars at one time as I purchased them in disrepair and repaired them and sold them.   There was always grease under my nails and my hands contained bruises or cuts on them from working in such a harsh environment.  Cars back in the day were nothing like today, they simply were not reliable.  Every weekend I was at the auto parts store or junkyard piecing together some car that some part had failed.  I do not look back at those times very fondly as being under a car when you had to have it, to be to work, grew tiresome.

I still made time for my friends at the local diner and enjoyed my “salt of the earth” friends. 

One day while eating my salad I overheard one of my favorite waitresses grumble about a tip.  Some elderly couple had eaten their dinner and after their fill before leaving he pulled out some change and left two quarters.  While I always over tipped, it was because I knew them, liked them and when I came into the place even before they knew me, the girls fought over which one got me and or my party.  “to insure prompt service”

What I was not aware of; the patrons in fact fund the wait staff.   If you have ever eaten at a restaurant you in fact are or have been an employer.  How did you pay?  Were you fair?

Typically, they make one or two dollars an hour from the business, which now goes to cover their taxes.  Back in the day, their tips were un-reported income for the most part and later some assumed value established to cover their part of the tax collection system.

Taxes are another subject for another day, today I am calling attention to the fact that these folks have a very irregular or inconsistent paycheck.  The friends at Denny’s and the story is over forty years old.  While it is not dusty in my mind and only seems like yesterday, the fact remains that this system is still in place today.

I saw a girl get a couple of quarters the other day from an elderly couple and could not help but think, surely by now, everyone knows that you are paying these peoples salary!

I have turned into a foodie over the years.  My palate has changed from forty years ago and I have not been into a Denny’s in about as long.  Eating fried food is not much better than smoking, of which neither I do.

While I am happy to report that automobiles are no longer the worrisome things they once were, they still however require maintenance, just not by me.  Either metallurgy has improved or the Japanese and other foreign automobile producers have forced a paradigm shift in the American automobile industry as now American made cars compete nicely with the others.

What has transfixed my attention as of late is the fact that we still do not understand as a people what a TIP is and what it is meant to be.  Some establishments use a kiosk of sorts at the table where you order, where one can entertain themselves while waiting and then where one pays for their food and service.  When you “check out” a scale appears on the bottom with a suggested “tip” amounts. If not that then at other places, printed on the ticket are different amounts so you can easily identify the percentage and add in the correct amount.

While I will not belabor the point of automation in this industry taking away from the “personal touch”, I will say that part of my “tip” is that I expect that personal touch.  When I go into such an establishment, I expect pampering.  Had I wanted self-serve, I would eat at home.

So here is my TIP to the industry and all who choose to work there.

When I arrive, I expect a warm and friendly greeting, and I want to feel as if I am important and welcome.  When seated; the table should be clean and dry and the chairs should be clean as well as the floor. The bathroom should be clean, and smell fresh.  I often find that if the bathroom is poorly maintained; the kitchen is as well.

The server no matter how busy should be able to speak with my guest and myself in a friendly conversational manner.  His or her knowledge of the food should be endless.  They must know the food, how it is prepared and be able to speak to its contents for those with food allergies or even particular taste. As menus are convoluted at times, they should be a sales type person able to ask appropriate questions and suggest items.

The server should be visible at all times and attentive without over burdening the guest with request about the food.  Water or other drinking glasses should never get below half-full. At no time should a guest have to go looking for their server or accouterments of some kind.

The food quality is not the responsibility of the server however, how he or she takes care of any issues is.  Tips should not be reflective of the food quality.  The server did not cook it therefore; they should not be punished, because the kitchen screwed something up.

There is a rule about Buffet’s and tipping, and it should be noted: that the more that one has to self-serve, the amount of the tip is reflected.  Tips are reflective of “customer service.”

I personally find the kiosk with games offensive, and counter productive to the whole “eating out” experience.  There are already too many distractions that keep people from “experiencing” each other and the whole “Event” of sharing a meal with someone.  Just as I find electronic gadgets at the table offensive, I find places that push this technology and even push the patron to use it as a method of paying, distasteful.

The simple facts are that the family unit as a whole is suffering.  They suffer from gadgets, screens of different kinds, or other distractions and the parents loosing control of what manners are.  Etiquette in fact is becoming a lost art.  

One of the reasons that I eat out is that I have the full attention of family or other guest without the distractions of the TV or other electronic things that amuse us.  Some restaurants have taken to bringing that home experience to you however as there are flat screens all over the place with anything that might interests someone.

James Stewart once said in “Mr. Hobbs takes a vacation. That what we need is an Un-Edison!”   Mr. Hobbs identified the problem, he just came up with an incorrect solution.  What we need is parents who teach manners, etiquette and hard and fast rules about TV’s and gadgets at the table.  Families should endeavor to eat at least one meal at the table without the distraction of TV or Facebook! 

When people look back at our history they will find that the decline of the family had much to do with these things of which I write. 

As we stray from our humanity, and trade social intercourse with pokes, and OMG, and LOL, we loose sight of many other things along the way including one another.

Allow me to leave you today with a verse from a book that most of you know, but may put aside for something else. 

Ecclesiastes

A Time for Everything

There is a time for everything,
    and a season for every activity under the heavens:

    a time to be born and a time to die,
    a time to plant and a time to uproot,
    a time to kill and a time to heal,
    a time to tear down and a time to build,
    a time to weep and a time to laugh,
    a time to mourn and a time to dance,
    a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
    a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
    a time to search and a time to give up,
    a time to keep and a time to throw away,
    a time to tear and a time to mend,
    a time to be silent and a time to speak,
    a time to love and a time to hate,
    a time for war and a time for peace.

What do workers gain from their toil? 10 I have seen the burden God has laid on the human race. 11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet[a] no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. 12 I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live. 13 That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God.

 

There is a time for LOL and OMG; there is also a time for family and friends and one on one face-to-face laughing, sharing, caring, crying, hugging, bracing your fellow man, and paying attention to who you are and what your purpose is here, today.

-Best to you and those that you care about!

#revenge II  #Abduction

#revenge II #Abduction

Revenge II

Revenge_

I deliberately watched this a few days past when it actually airs, so if I choose to write about it; the spoilers will be fewer.

Last week, Emily and Victoria had been taken hostage, and tonight, well Sunday, all “hell” breaks loose as the bad boy of bad boys is vanquished, actually into an incinerator.

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I cannot help but wonder if Aaron Spelling is helping them as this series is taking on some similarities to Charmed, without the witchcraft.

charmed_season_1_promo-2

The twist to the plot is that Victoria works with Emily to secure their release at great peril to herself; in the end she tries to do the right thing.

Two new villains enter the picture as Margaux brings in one of her fathers thugs (some PI) to secure evidence on Emily to make her pay for Daniels Death, “She will have her revenge!”

Karine+Vanasse+Revenge+Season+4+Episode+2+VmC7GT8wqXcl

There are side stories involving the crazy red head and Nolan, the gay-not gay brainchild which, involves yet “revenge” in the making, as the crazy mother Penelope (other antagonist ) is now making plans to ruin her daughters life, and keep control of her trust fund!

Who will die next Sunday?  What will happen to the new bad guy? Will this too end quickly?

Will Emily know that she has a new enemy?  Will her father step in and try to control the situation?  What about the FBI people that were on the take; will they be caught, or will they be new bad guys?

Will Victoria renounce her new charitable attitude and help Margaux?

Stay Tuned!  I will most likely pontificate about it, as a few of you seem interested, as that blog seems to garner some viewers.

Why not take a mental vacation from reality for an hour a week…?

-Best to you and those that you care about!

#revenge

#revenge

Revenge

Before you say Whaaaat?! I am talking about the show “Revenge.”

Revenge_

As a writer, I appreciate the writing on many different types of shows and movies.  I have even tried my hand at “fan-fiction” just for the heck of it.

Revenge with Emily VanCamp has some pretty talented writers but from time to time one has to wonder, “Did you think that through?”

Emily-Vancamp-in-Revenge-Wallpaper

Firstly let’s examine the plot…

Amanda played by Emily who is ironically enough Emily Thorn (I like the name) in the show has come back to the Hampton s to enact a series of revengeful acts to make the bad guys pay for their evil deeds.  Their deeds are in part, having her father take the fall for a business deal gone badly.  Amanda was collateral damage in that she was sent to a mental institution and then to orphanages and if memory serves did time in prison because the Grayson’s, (another cool name) had the influence to make sure that all of the loose ends were tied up.

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I started watching this “this season” after catching one episode of “return, having not turned the TV off quick enough.” Had I been just a little faster with the remote, I would not have watched it as the title does nothing for me.

Ironically, “Return” did not hold my attention, but Revenge did.

So, Amanda thinking her father is dead, plots revenge on all of the perpetrators after getting a box left full of notes and pictures from her father from a overly bright person who is a technical savant, very wealthy, and a pushover for a pretty face, whether it be male or female.

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Season 4 starts out with the return of her father, surprise!

This last episode enters another dark character from her fathers past that is looking for his assassin daughter, who was killed by the local cop; who is also Amanda’s childhood sweetheart!

At the end of the show this bad guy discovers that Amanda is still alive and kidnaps her along with Victoria (her fathers love interest) with poison tipped darts.

Problem, why darts?  For all the bad guy knows, these are two helpless females alone at a lighthouse, late at night, in the dark.

I never watched soap operas but I must say that this show is so much like one that it reminds me of the game of golf.  In golf you get one or two really good shots that keep you coming back for more humbling, each and every game.

This show is so riddled with cliches, and so predictable, that I am amazed that it has lasted four seasons.  I am guessing that the “star power” is why.  There are a few plot turns and twists that keep one interested but I must confess, that had I not binge watched the first three seasons, I would never have watched the second episode of season four.

JAMES TUPPER, EMILY VANCAMP

This bad guy is “so bad” that her father does not want Amanda involved to the point of keeping secrets from her so she would not be involved.  Now that she is kidnapped and in the enemy’s hands, I am guessing that she will get a chance to use her super ninja powers and subdue the enemy.

While we should be about to come to a happy ending, another plot twist was unleashed as now through a tell-all confession to Daniels latest love interest; the local over achieving cop now knows the complete story as told by Victoria Grayson to a somewhat troubled grieving girlfriend.  This girlfriend has a magazine and will most probably go public with this information and no telling what the cop will do who is also romantically interested in Amanda / Emily.

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Does Victoria survive this next episode?  Does David Clark survive, or do the bad guys get him?  My guess is that Amanda survives, David gets killed by “bad cops,” and now Amanda has a whole new set of people to enact revenge against.  Grieving girlfriend will get involved in some way but you can bet it will be counter productive to the process of getting the bad guy.

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So, why the poison darts?  They need the show of force to be methodically planed out with the odds against Amanda…

Stay tuned for Revenge!  …..

#toxic #people

#toxic #people

Toxic people   

If I don’t agree with you, lock-step, I am wrong and therefore must be dismissed.  That however is not good enough, not only must I be dismissed, I must be told how stupid that I am for not seeing things exactly as you do! And when I am being informed of how brainless that I am, the informer is compelled to use the most derisive terminology that they can come up with.  Not only am I attacked, but my lineage is attacked!  Further, the attacks are from the faceless, nameless, who build themselves up, by tearing others down.   Please note that if that is your tactic, I will not engage you.

Firstly, if we all agreed on everything, than we would all most certainly be taking the blue pill.  (Brave New World.)

Opinions are formed by many factors including, who your parents were, what geographic area of the world that you were born and grew up in.  Where you went to school, what you studied.  Who your professors were and where they grew up, and where they studied.  Your views are predicated on so many different factors that we can not all possibly agree on everything as, we are a diverse people.

Diversity builds strength and character.

In my daily walk, I choose to have friends that are as diverse in nature as night vs. day.  Why?  If I have friends that are all “like minded,” how can I possibly grow as a human being? “This is my box, as long as I stay inside the box the world will be ok, please don’t try to confuse me with the facts!”

Folks; that thinking is profoundly flawed! 

There is a modicum of truth out there from just about anyone with a brain.  I heard a man on a talk show trying to convince the moderator that since all people come from Africa that the black man is the father of the entire human genome and therefore all species of man everywhere should treat the black man with the respect of a parent, and pay homage to them. He as a matter of fact went on to say that they were entitled to receive stuff from the white person, for this reason.

The moderator somehow managed not to laugh at this guy, and while I was thinking how misinformed that this person is; I was interested in his take on the world.  He, like many does not look outside the box.  Somewhere in his history someone passed that story to him, and he did not question it.

Early man traces back some 6 million years..  There were several different “evolutionary developments of man” in that time period and while man may have fist walked up right in what is now Africa, you must remember that Africa did not look like it does now back 6 million odd years ago, and with tectonic plate movement, was probably not located  anywhere then, where it is today.

The truth will set you free!

We as a people must learn to embrace the truth.  Before we embrace it, we must learn what the truth is.  Many don’t want to do this because the truth is uncomfortable.

Are you the type of person who goes to the doctor if you have a strange pain?  Not the kind of pain that keeps you up at night, on a scale of 1-10 say it is a 2.  Do you go get it checked out?  Are you the kind of person who goes and get regular check ups and do you go for cancer screenings both of the external kind as well as the invasive type that all of us dread.

Why or why not?

If you do, you are one of the few who is willing to learn the truth and then deal with it.  If the truth reveals some form of cancer; catching it early increases your odds of beating it, our outrunning it.  If not, the truth scares you and you would rather live in your box.  I know people who will not even go to the doctor for a simple check up as they “feel fine!”

We had a blood drive at the office one day.  One of my friends was called by the folks after the fact, and told to check with her doctor as there was something not right with her blood. You need to understand that this person never missed work, was never late and exhibited no symptoms of any illness prior to finding out that there was a problem.

She found out that she had leukemia and the remarkable thing was, she died two weeks later!  The brain is so powerful, that when she was told that she had cancer, her brain killed her!  That is why it is imperative that when you are sick that you keep a good mental attitude; and if you are really sick, you find a place that treats the entire body, not just the illness.

There are many reasons that people have issues with evolution.

The basic issue is really a matter of human limitation; we cannot conceive of 4.5 billion years, we simply can’t do it!  If our limited mind could; we would be railing against the $18 trillion of debt that this country currently has dug itself into but, we cannot put that into any context that makes sense.

Why do you think so many people play the lottery?  Large numbers are not something that our limited minds can fathom. The odds of winning are 1 in 250M rounded down.

But still many people buy tickets so they are either, really bad at math or, they cannot conceive of how many 250 million other folks playing affects the chances of them winning.

We cannot comprehend 4.5 billion years of age on the earth and we cannot comprehend that man has been here for over 6 million years so, we invent something more tenable. We invent the creation story.

Now before you write me and call me names; I have a third possibility for you, one that I happen to think makes more sense.

Having studied biology and realizing that each cell is actually a machine, I too find it difficult to believe that random happenstance, even over billions of years is responsible for us.

So how about this for a possibility; what if, some omnipotent being used the evolutionary process to design what we have today?  What if the stories that we read in Sunday school, are his way of allowing us to deal with our creation; as we could not possibly understand genetic manipulation 2000 years ago.  What if God’s language is that of science?

Dealing with the facts on a scientific basis makes life much simpler.  Dealing with others on common grounds “which we all have” makes life with others possible.

I do not require you to agree with me to be friends with you and I don’t require that you submit to my way of thinking in order to carry on a conversation.  I do require that you be open to the possibility that your way of thinking may not be iron clad.  Staying open to other possibilities is what I am about.

There is strength in diversity of thought.  There is always room for growth as a person and acceptance if not simply the respect of others views.

As one who studies philosophy, I enjoy the Sufis among others.  There actually is common ground, if you care to look.

Embracing life is a philosophy that I hold close, and I think most would benefit from.  Man must build up each other, instead of tearing them down. 

I do not allow toxic people into my circle.  Observing boundaries and not crossing them keeps me sane.  Sharing with you some of my walk is my effort to help my fellow man.

Above all else, seek the truth.  Be willing to look outside your box for the answers.  I truly feel that we are all connected in some grand way and while some might call this “new age” or put some other bullshit label on it, a large number of you will know this to be true.

Boundaries

As I spoke earlier about setting boundaries, I want you to imagine for a moment, the solar system.  The sun in the middle and each and every planet orbiting the sun as it has done for billions of years.

Now for argument sake, pretend that you are the sun.  Your friends or family are the planets.  Your BFF might be Mercury who you tell everything.  Like the best the sun has to offer, mercury also gets the worst as it is really too close but, what are BFF’s for?

Now you have other friends who are out there with Venus or the Earth or Mars etc.

Toxic folks are like Plutowho I still think is a planet,” but just kept at a distance as they are simply toxic.  They still get some energy from you, but not very much. Have you ever noticed how some people will simply rob you of your energy? Push them away from your circle.

Learning to set boundaries will keep you sane.  Learning to keep toxic people, thoughts and practices away from you is truly an art, but one worth attempting.  You let Pluto come do a close fly by, every now and then to see if they have grown any.  If they have, maybe you let them into Jupiter’s orbit or maybe even Mars!

The lesson here is you are in control of your destiny.  Don’t allow others to poison your well.

-Best to you and those that you care about!

Copyright 2015 Timedok All Rights Reserved.

Does it pay to stay with one service provider for a long time?

Does it pay to stay with one service provider for a long time?

Have you ever noticed the commercials for some service that offers all of these great things with the fine print stating “new customers only?”

MVI-New-Technologies

Cable used to be the one that would piss me off the most, as there is always new technology but, if you’re an existing customer, forget it unless of course you want to pay more.  Now if you are going from one brand to another, you could  get some number of months at a reduced rate and of course get the newest technology.

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Problem: You’re bundled!

verizon-bundles

Here is the way to keep that from being a problem.

I don’t use the e-mail that comes with the account, at least not for anything important.

Get a Gmail or hotmail or some other account that does not require you to stay with a particular cable company.

Phone:  This too can be an issue but by law that have to allow for porting the number from one carrier to another however; why have a phone through them at all?

Most of us have cell phones so do we really need a house phone?

Cell-Phones--Smartphones

I purchased a magic Jack and got 5 years of service for $100.  The magic jack plugs right into the router and then into the base of a cordless phone that has several satellite phones.  With Magic Jack they give you a flat Ethernet cable.  Throw it out and get a shielded Cat6 cable and the interference problem that it came with originally; goes away.

http://www.magicjack.com/index.html

Copper or POTS lines (plain old telephone service) is going away in most major cities.  There is little need for them and they are hard to keep going as they frequently get water in the junction boxes etc.  It is much less expensive for the cable companies to take care of phones through the cable via VOIP.  Instead of several dollars a month and all sorts of fees and taxes; Magic Jack is the cheapest I have found.

Note: there is no 911 from magic jack.  Check with whatever provider you use to make sure that you know what you are buying.

You can just about always strike a better deal as a new customer than an existing customer which is sad because it is much more expensive to get a customer, than keep one.  As an existing customer I would like to be notified that a new service is available and they will be upgrading adding or what have you at no extra charge.

Alarm systems are the same way; and I recommend changing these every so often.  Again technology is always improving and for your protection, you want the latest greatest.  You want the cell back up option as well.  If they try and sell you wifi cameras, and all of that, you can do it yourself for much less money and without the extra monthly expense.  These cameras are going for around $50 online and they come with software in them which allows you to see them from any internet connection.  Change the default user and make the password strong as to keep your private life private, and not on some Russian web site.

Shopping property insurance is also a good thing to do if you have been with a company for sometime.  If you don’t have any claims you should be able to find less expensive insurance out there that is comparable to what you have currently.  Some may find that they already have the best price but it is worth the effort.  There is a price to pay for being lazy and that price can be pretty high.

Electricity may be something that you can shop as well.

Bexar-Witness-Meter1-copy

www.powertochoose.org is a good site to look at.  There you can price your current rate and shop for cheaper.  That of course only applies to people who can pick and choose but, if you can you can save substantially.

With these new smart meters, some companies are offering free nights and weekends.

What you need to know about electricity is that the cost varies by time of day and demand.  Encouraging you not to use it during peak times is now in their hands as they know when and how much you use and I am told that they can remotely shut your power off if they need the power for commercial customers.  Don’t sign a contract like that unless you are never home during the day and you don’t have a swimming pool that requires the pump run during full sunlight days.

You are the customer and the companies that offer you their service would do well to be reminded of that from time to time.  I was paying $300 a month for cable and the picture quality was not great, the internet speed was not great and the phone service went down often with the cable.

I switched carriers, half the cost, faster internet, more channels and better picture quality and the phone number stayed the same.  On my third year the cost is still only 2/3 what the cable was and my outages are much less frequent.

Speaking of channels, do you really need them all?  We have more options today than ever before.  With streaming services like Netflix and Amazon and many others I would wager that there is more entertainment available than ever before without ever using cable.  I actually have one “smart TV” that only has a small HD antenna on it, and what services I get from the internet.

I think we are seeing a transformation of the entertainment industry hence the fight for net neutrality.  If Netflix is willing to pay for their packets to flow through the internet unobstructed by other traffic someone will gladly accept their (your) money.  There are ways to allow certain packets more bandwidth than others.

There may be other things which I am not thinking of that can be “shopped,” and I would welcome knowing about them.  This is just a quick list from the top of my head.

Banking service is a place that needs much investigation.  They are the only game in town and act like it.  There is no good vehicle for investment today that I have found, and the banks nickle and dime you for everything!  Their credit cards are also equally taxing as if you should carry a balance, KACHING!

-Best to you and those that you care about!

 Copyright 2015 TimeDok All Rights Reserved.