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I CAN learn stuff

I am constantly amazed at the things I can learn from others. If I open my mind and ears, while keeping my mouth shut, there is a wealth of knowledge out there. Even if it is not new knowledge to me, the perspective of others might as well make it a completely new topic.

The really hard part is the “keeping my mouth shut part”. Once you get a handle on that, the fun part of learning from others can really begin! There are a lot of people in the world that will not share their true opinions if you challenge them with your counter-opinions before they have had a chance to commit to their own.

This is probably not news worth blogging over but it is a realization I guess it has taken me until my upper 40’s to figure out. It is probably the kind of realization that hits us all at some “level of maturity”, so I guess this is just my time. It’s kind of like the day you realize your parents actually knew what they were talking about, and were not the enemy after all. Hopefully (unlike me) you will figure that out before they are dead and you have a chance to tell them.

Learning from others is not just an ability to “learn from your elders” however. I am finding that although a wide range of ages is great, it is not the only way to get a fresh view. I have a great friend that is 93 years old. He is one of the sharpest minds I know. He is an inspiration, and I am truly lucky to know him. To think of the vast pool of experience he draws from when talking about anything from music to Nettle tea is pretty impressive. His views have the weight and wisdom that can only come from the time it has taken him to collect everything up to this point.

Just as impressive, but in an entirely different way, are the opinions of some of the teenagers that are around where I work. I don’t go out of my way often enough to listen to those young opinions. They don’t benefit from the great experience of age, or have any of the moderating “shutters of reality” that we all grow over time to keep them quite as grounded. On the other hand, they are not quite as willing to give up on an idea just because it has been tried before (indeed they may not even know that it HAS been tried before) and failed, or they may not even care. They are the ones that are going to make the rules for the future, so it is worth listening to them now.

I am going to try to work more on the shutting up and listening thing for a while.

Daylight Savings(?) Time

I don’t know about everyone else in the World, but I am beat after the little change that an hour of Daylight Savings Time ‘seems” to have added to my day. I know it does not actually matter one way or the other how we slice up our day into whatever units seem reasonable. If you are marginally smarter than my Collie, you can adjust your sleeping/waking pretty easily to accommodate it.

Actually now that I think about it, scratch that. My Collie may be smarter than he is letting on. He does not seem to be affected in any way. Maybe that is one of the many advantages to “napping” for about 16 hours of each day. You can add/subtract a few minutes to each sleep/wake period and it does not seem like a big deal.

As for us non-Collies, I don’t appear to be alone in my perceived cheating out of an hour’s sleep. In the infinite wisdom that manifests itself so often in the management of my work unit, we had an “All Department” meeting this morning. Everyone else seemed about as engaged as I was in the process. After listening to the mortally boring status updates of others that have nothing to do with your work, and the equally irrelevant updates on happenings in buildings that you spend about 8 hours per year in, and the blathering of people that don’t know anymore than you do about the crappy financial situation we are in (other than the fact that I guess it should inspire confidence that the “Managers” are just as clueless as any homeless person about what is going on), I don’t think there was a person in the room that was aware enough to drive legally. It should be against some kind of policy (God knows we have enough of them to cover every other possible situation!) or Union bargaining rule (Equally full of solutions for non-existent problems) to expect both participation and coherence on “DST Hangover Day”.

The “impairment” was showing all day long. Not only was I performing about five notches below normal, so was everyone else I dealt with today.

Oh well. In a few days we will all adjust. None of it is really that big of a deal. It gives bloggers and news people something to blather on about. I am sure that when I get used to it and take it for granted, that I will not be in any big hurry to remember this day as the beginning of when I could start REALLY enjoying myself after work. In a few months when I have an extra hour to fire up the Bar-B-Q and drink some brews while playing tug-of-war with my Collie in the back yard, I will probably not remember that I was unsuccessfully trying to stay awake at work today.

Beer tax?

Apparenty because of a few site limitations, there will be no carry over from old blogs to new. No big loss there because blogs are usually out of date after two weeks anyway. Cool! that keeps stuff fresh! You can always comment about old stuff to start a new thread if you want, but this is not exactly the Las Vegas Review Journal, so who cares?

If we are going to discriminate against beer drinkers as the source of all Evil, and expect them to fund the treatment services for every meth head out there, let’s share the love. The Oregon wine industry has basically created themselves out of nothing in the last few years. I think the casual wine drinkers should have an opportunity to share in the treatment funding for the people that can’t say no. Let’s increase the tax on every bottle of Oregon wine by 1,900 percent as well. That’s fair, it’s all booze. Why single out the micro brews that have been able to carve out a niche in the economy?

 

So beer should be the sin of choice to fund treatment for all of the industries that we have made illegal, and thus cannot tax appropriately to fund their fair share? OK, so let’s legalize marijuana and set a nice healthy tax on it. Bingo! Tax revenue problem solved. An added benefit is that we will probably eliminate the need for about one fifth of the prison space, or we could use those beds for people that we would all really like to see behind bars for property crimes and such. I doubt very much that the increase in those that really want to puff a doobie would make the argument of those whiners about “Gateway” drugs come to fruition. Let’s find out. We can always re-criminalize it in two years if it doesn’t work. My understanding is that the Federal Government can’t prohibit it, they can only regulate it, and the State has the power to choose how that is done.

 

If nothing else, it would tone down some of the hate.

 

When was the last time we loooked at some other taxes that have not been raised in a while? Has grass seed seen an increase lately? Christmas trees seem to take a lot of acreage, 3 or 4 bucks per tree should be reasonable. Last time I was in a fast food restraunt there was a ridiculously obese person in fornt of me. I gotta believe the bag of tacos she was going to stuff in her mouth were going to cost me money when she finally goes down for long term medical care. I am probably already paying her bills through some form of welfare since I can’t see how on Earth she could hold any job other then Food Tester. Let’s jack up the tax per burger/taco/snack by 25 cents and see if we can’ t swim in tax revenue.

 

If our tax orgy criteria is simply luxuries that create burdens for the rest of us, we can look at a lot of other revenue streams.

 

We could do a child tax ala China from old. Unless you have a religious mandate (that I am sure is still valid 140 years after Brigham Young issued it, or 800 years after the Quoran listed the guidelines) you should really compensate the rest of us for your use of resources. I want an educated group of kids to be running this State when I am old and unable to participate. That is not going to happen if we can’t fund the system correctly, and overburdening families and others from out of State that don’t pay their fair share are hurting that.

 

I have noticed that a certain percentage of the people that returns cans/bottles are persons that appear to me to be in need of treatment services that would be funded with the 1,900 percent increase in the beer tax. Either they are persons that are fairly obviously members of the homeless community that are often also in need of the treatment services, or they have large quantities of beer cans/bottles to return, so they must also be consumers unless they found the truck full of bottles in the parking lot on their way into the store. There also appear to be a lot of people consuming unhealthy beverages with high sugar/Phenylalanine content that should contribute to the Tax-O-Rama. Let’s just raise the deposit on every kind of container to 25 cents.