Tuesday, June 30, 2009
June of last year, we used 457 kWh of electricity. This year we used 605. The difference is that last year at this time as unseasonably cool and rainy, allowing us to open the windows and not need the air conditioning. This year, it has been in the high eighties to mid nineties almost every day for weeks forcing us to use the AC all day and many nights. Though we also have installed an additional seven or more inches of insulation in the attic, the temperatures are just too high to be easily beaten.
So for the last year, our numbers are up. The bad kind of up. When compared to the average US home, we are now 76% rather than 73% and per square meter consumption is up to almost 71 kWh.
Water use is also up due to the fact that we have a larger garden this year, and the drip system is set up to water it every morning at 4. When it rains, we can turn it off, but it has not been raining often. However, because we use the sawdust toilet, our water consumption is still far below the average American.
Some good news! I finally bought a Kill-A-Watt. I got the EZ model even though it costs almost twice as much at $35. I got that one because it offers more features. It measures volts, watts, amps, power factor, kilowatt hours, time, and has a backup in case it gets unplugged or the power goes out. I bought it not only to check power consumption for appliances and gadgets, but also for use as a monitor for my generator project. I am building a generator using a rototiller engine, a car alternator, an inverter and a deep cycle battery.
Here's some info.
Indoor AC blower off 15 watts, on 450.
Entertainment center, everything off, 15 watts, everything on, more than 200. The Xbox uses 60 watts when on. TV=50.
Washing machine, off, 0 watts, water filling 12, washing 450, spinning 600 down to 350.
Laptop, on but not charging, about 15 watts. The power supply is rated at 75, I assume that's running and charging concurrently.
Using the kWh feature, I found it takes approximately .25 kWh to wash a normal load of laundry.
The refridgerator uses about 5 watts when not cooling, 18 with the door open and light on, and 230 when running then levels off at about 200. It is rated for just over 1000 kWh per year.
The box fan we use in the window uses 67, 91, 118 on its three different settings.
Things I'd like to find out are my computer (desktop,) the gas furnace, air compressor, phone chargers, other chargers, the shop, and the modem/router.
The unit itself does say that it uses about 1 watt, so remember that.
Also, I did a bit of math for you, and you can calculate the yearly cost of a parasitic load by taking the number of watts it uses and multiplying that by 8.76 to get the number of kWh used in a year. For instance, the AC uses 15 watts*8.76 = 131.4 kWh. Muliply that by your electricity rate, for me about $.11 and it tells me that it costs me about $14.46 per year just to keep the thing plugged in. Sucks right?
Great helpful tool for conserving energy, get one.
Friday, June 26, 2009
I think he'll be the fodder for pastors attempting to be culturally relevant. Here you have a guy who has had it all from the beginning, could have sat down and watched TV for a year and still made $ 75 million, and yet could not keep himself out of debt and bought lavish crap.
He was not happy with his appearance, and we all know he should have stopped after his second nose job. But he didn't. He looked like some freakish monstrosity more than a decade ago.
The subject of abuse by his father, the butt of so many jokes, with so many, so public problems. A success yet a failure. He named all three of his children after himself. Made more money than you could count in a life time, and blew it all plus more.
The real sad part though is his relationship with his father. And now he leaves his children with no father. Not that it was the worst thing that could have happened, but I don't know the family.
At least people can't hurt him anymore, and he can't hurt himself, and he can't hurt anyone else.
Thursday, June 25, 2009
The thing that struck me, and if you pay attention, it will strike you too is near the end when Jon is almost to the point of convincing Mike to agree on something and then Mike backpeddles. He falls back on the tried and true specific definition that republicans are now using for abortion. This idea relates to my concept of isms. When we are too stiff in the way we think about things, we end up playing fast and loose and skipping over important truths.
Truths like the kind of stuff I think about when I listen to abortion debates. People say that life starts at conception. But it has been discovered that up to 80% of fertilized embryos never implant in the wall of the uterus. After that, one in five pregnancies end in miscarriages. My wife just miscarried after about six weeks, what was that? If she hadn't taken a test, she would have just thought it was a late period. The thing that bugs me is that if all unborn babies go to heaven, then by the time the wicked rest of us get there, we are going to be vastly outnumbered by babies who have never even been born. Think about, if there are 7 billion people on earth today and the world ends, and lets say for argument's sake that 25% of them go to heaven, that means heaven will be populated by about 1.75 billion people and 29 billion unborn babies. That's a bit ponderous to me. Will someone please tell me how that works?
But listen, don't misconstrue what I'm trying to say. I am absolutely against abortion in all cases except for when the life of the mother is in eminent danger, but somebody's got to change some rhetoric because something just isn't working here fundamentally.
Firstly, the left and right are going to need to meet on some sort of middle ground. Humans are humans. People are never going to stop having sex out of marriage. Not going to happen. People are never going to stop having abortions, no matter how many laws are passed, it has been going on for time immemorial. So we've got to start thinking that for many people, abstinence only sex education is not the best idea. I cannot preach abstinence based on my beliefs and expect someone to be abstinent if they don't hold the same beliefs. I cannot expect anyone to do anything simply because of my superior logic. That much has been proven. I was raised in a fairly strict Seventh-Day Adventist home and church and it didn't stop me from getting laid much. I even seriously considered having an abortion if my girlfriend got pregnant, which she did, but after I had been gone for a sufficient period of time so as to erase all suspicion. She wanted to get laid more than I did, what can I say? The kid's name is Christopher by the way.
If I'm honest about my beliefs, and I am, then to prevent the most abortions, I should be handing out condoms to the people most likely not to have them when they are needed or something. Honestly, do you actually think that abortion will ever be illegalized? Further, do you ever think people will stop trying to have abortions even if they are illegal? Never happened before.
The democrats want safe legal and rare, but the republicans can't even compromise for rare. I'm not saying that even one abortion should be ok, but I'm saying that the two sides have got to start stepping toward one another. The republicans have got to stop demanding all (certainly wont settle for nothing,) and the democrats have got to start focusing on "rare."
It's a tough issue, and one that I am certainly thankful I've never personally had to face. In our culture, what would Jesus do? I don't know about you, but I don't think he'd be in front of a clinic with a sign. He might be there, but he wouldn't be yelling and he wouldn't have a sign.
One thing I can agree with Huckabee on is that shooting people is not ok. I can't say I don't believe in justifiable homicide, but I just don't think that guy in KC was justified. And really, I don't think Jesus would believe in justifiable homicide either. At least from a human perspective.
Same tired arguments?
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
As my wife can attest, I have known for quite some time what the problem is in that couple. I don't want to say that I think I know better than anyone, but I wouldn't be writing if I didn't.
Despite their differences, Jon and Kate are quite alike in their drives in life. In light of the most recent series of events, it comes down to this. Kate is selfish and immature and wants to stay together. Jon is selfish and immature and wants to be apart. That's really the only difference. Also Jon is passive and Kate is overbearing.
They are never going to get along without a fundamental change in who they are. They are both very selfish as evidenced in Jon's statement "I have to do what's best for me."
You are a father, you do what's best for the children and your family. You are both simply selfish and immature. Sack up and do your job as a parent.
Friday, June 19, 2009
As with many things you see here, my views are a little unorthodox, however I believe they lie within the shadow of orthodoxy. What I mean is, I think they're compatible, so lets get to it.
I find it interesting that many American Christians hold the official doctrine of hell almost as strongly as something like the doctrine of the Resurrection. So much so in fact that they'll run anyone out who doesn't. Figure 1, the Curious Case of Carlton Pearson. After being the favored son of of a more charismatic sect of Christianity, he was almost literally run out of town when he stopped believing in hell. His story was featured on a very interesting NPR report recently. He was also seen in a debate involving Deepak Chopra, a slightly crazy lady and Mark Driscoll (who did quite well.) While I do believe in a concept of hell, I don't find it ponderous how he can disbelieve and still be a Christian. I know of nowhere in the Bible that says you have to believe in a literal eternal burning hellfire to go to heaven. That's not the gospel I heard about.
I am near the end of a book called "The Reason for God" by Timothy Keller and early in the book he explains what he believes about hell. My beliefs are quite similar. I believe that hell is an eternal conscious punishment, however I will not firmly hold on to the idea of it being directly caused by fire. I believe that as used in the scripture, fire is probably a metaphor for extreme anguish. The kind of anguish that is worse than anything you've ever experienced. But not necessarily just burning on fire forever. Let the punishment fit the crime.
Keller like many takes his prime beliefs about hell from Jesus' story about the rich man and Lazarus. Remember, the rich man and Lazarus have died and are in Sheol and they are separated by a vast chasm. Lazarus is comforted in Abraham's Bosom and the rich man is tormented. He cries out to Abraham to send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water to wet his tongue because he is in torment. Abraham replies that he cannot since they are separate and persons may not travel between the realms. So the rich man tells Abraham to send Lazarus back to tell his brothers so that they will not end up in the same place where he is. Abraham says that the rich man's brothers have Moses and the Prophets and if they don't get it from them, they won't believe even if someone rises from the dead.
There are numerous perpetrations of this passage. Some think it is literally literal, complete with Abraham and Lazarus and the rich man actually talking to one another. Some think it is essentially literal with some figurative elements to it. And some like my dad (a former Seventh-Day Adventist who still believes in annihilationism) and Jehovah's Witnesses believe that this is an essentially figurative tale meant to be speaking primarily to Jesus' unbelievable resurrection rather than to the nature of hell.
I lean toward the literal interpretation because it shows us a lot about the attitude of the rich man. Notice how he doesn't seem to really notice that he's in hell and that all his power and comfort is now lost. In fact, he tries to order Lazarus around as if he's still the rich man and Lazarus is still the poor man. I think it makes sense that God simply ratifies our choices in life to apply beyond death. If you live your life in service to God, your afterlife will reflect that. If you live in contradiction to God, your afterlife will reflect that. I might go so far as to say people may not even notice that they have died. They continue on in their selfish and wicked attitude. Hell is full of people given to wretchedness, selfishness, and anger.
A point I think needs to be inserted here is my belief in degrees of reward in heaven and degrees of punishment in hell. Jesus, multiple times, mentioned how it would be better for a certain person or city if it had never existed or if he had a millstone tied around his neck. How it would be better or worse on the day of judgment if they had done such and such. If there's a better and a worse, then it follows that there is a something that the better or worse is better or worse than. Paul mentions that some will make it into heaven but as one who loses everything in a fire. Jesus says some who are first will be last and last first. If there's a first and a last then there has to be a bunch of intermediate steps as well. The same goes for hell. So it's only fair that those who devote their lives to God get great riches in heaven, and those who just barely make it in live in something more akin to an earthly trailer park (hopefully no tornadoes.)
And now for eternity. I get the feeling when I read the Bible and think about God and mathematics that time is not as some of us think it is. We exist in essentially four dimensions. We have the three standard physical axes, up/down, left/right, and front/back (to be simple.) But we exist in a fourth linear dimension called time. God as creator of this is outside it. He stands above and looks at the whole thing as a city planner looks at a map. When we die, we exit our dimensions and enter the spiritual realm where time does not go on forever as some of us understand eternity, but rather there is no time and no physical existence. Realize the truth Neo, there is no spoon. So an infinite punishment is not exactly the same as we might think it is. However, I believe the resurrected saved humans return to the restored earth as fully physical AND spiritual beings like we are today and may live in an unlimited time sort of situation. Those who are still and eternally dead exist in the spiritual realm where there is no such thing as linear time. This is the nature of the eternal conscious (and likely self perpetuated) punishment that I believe in.
That being said however, I still think the annihilationism viewpoint is pretty valid, and I would not be offended if that were the way it really is, however I don't think so. I don't think it is something we should divide over, but rather to debate vigorously in an environment of Christian unity and grace. Like I've told the Jehovah's Witnesses, their idea of afterlife is not all that appealing. If I live the best life possible here on earth, I still get just to be a resurrected human who doesn't go to heaven, and if I live the most debauched sinful life possible, I just get blinked out of existence. Doesn't seem like the effort is worth it or something.
So, no, I don't think eternal punishment is unfair. It's just as fair as the same sinful life justified by Christ and thus deserving of eternal reward. Except for one factor, it's the same life. It's realizing the atoning work of Jesus in your life, carried out to infinity.
Infinity, what a concept.
To start delving into the subject, we shall start at the beginning. Let me give ya the ol’ disclaimer first by saying that what I present here are the beliefs of these people to the best of my understanding. Any misrepresentation of anyone’s beliefs or opinions is completely accidental and I’ll be happy to make any corrections. Also, I’m just gonna tell it how it is, I’m not going to say “they believe” because I think doing that creates an unnecessary distinction between “us” and “them” which is not in the spirit of Christian unity no matter who “we” or “they” are. I’m just gonna tell you what I learned
The Creation Variation
Let’s start at the beginning with creation. The basics tell us that God created humans as the ultimate creation and the pinnacle of all he had done and he called them good, oh, and they were naked and unashamed of it. There’s no way to be sure, but I think God may have created them as children and allowed them to grow up together, but I digress. So they lived in the garden in the nude and didn’t really know there was a difference. But they sinned and then they realized they were naked. Now here’s an interesting concept. When God comes down and is finding out what is going on, what is the first question he asked? He asked who told them that they were naked. Not if they ate from the tree which would seem like a more important question, but he asked them who told them that they were naked. Interesting. It is not God who tells us that nudity is shameful, but rather it seems that Satan is the one who duped us into that belief.
The Jesus Analysis
The first best and only real thing that matters to me in any discussion is what Jesus would have to say about it. Well fortunately enough for us, we have some information that might shed some light on the subject. Firstly, we must understand the time period in which Jesus lived. In the first century world, nudity was quite common. Firstly it was a sign of poverty, but it was also common among fishermen, slaves, gardeners, carpenters, and other craftsmen and laborers when the weather got hot. Wait, carpenters you say? It was also common for women to work with only a cloth tied around their waste. Breast feeding was done openly and in public, like you might seen in some third world countries (such as
Here’s something else to consider. Jesus said that one must be like a little child to enter the
The Naturism Racism Theorem
Victorian culture really is where we get our view of nudity today. Before the new styles of fabrics and technology, what did people wear while swimming? Nothing, that’s what. But think about cultures who still practice nudity as a common way of life. You see, in Victorian times, there was this racism as missions thing about those people. Proper people did not want to be like those naked godless savages in the jungle. But as we still see today, when those naked godless savages come to a knowledge of Jesus Christ, they have some of the most lively and spirited worship services of all the people on the planet. Let me tell you, one of my goals in life is to get in on one of those African crazy church services. In fact, it is difficult to reach out to some cultures if you are wearing clothes, they think you are hiding something. So gear up (or not) and go to a naked tribe and tell them about Jesus. But don’t tell them they have to wear clothes because that’s not in the Bible. In
The Green Consensus
There’s not a whole lot more green than wearing no clothes. The energy doesn’t have to be expended to make the clothes that result in pollution, and no energy needs to be expended in washing them and they won’t end up in the land fill if they don’t wear out. Fewer clothes mean that air conditioning won’t have to be turned up as high in the summer.
The Humanitarian Juxtaposition
There is one way in which nudity is unacceptable, and that is when it is forced due to poverty or slavery. The Bible says the same thing. As I said before, throughout history, nudity has been a sign of poverty and while it’s ok in the summer, in the winter, people need to be provided clothes to keep warm. Fortunately in the
Some more points that are made I’ll list here because they don’t exactly fit into the creatively labeled paragraphs above. If Adam was the first Adam and Jesus was the second Adam and Jesus came to redeem the planet and remove the curse, then why can’t we return to a lifestyle like the first Adam had. Surely we all know that it’s not clothes that keep us from sinning, clothes don’t keep us from lusting. Though in my personal experience, they can keep some people who feel the need to look upon a naked body from looking twice. But on the other hand, if I had grown up without connecting nudity to sex, like reading a National Geographic Magazine, perhaps I would not be tempted to look so much. I have also read and heard from another’s personal experience that a child raised in a family comfortable with nudity will not be as apt to be tempted with pornography. As a man who has struggled with porn, I am in search of solutions for my own children.
The website on the subject that I read through mentioned one of my favorite tenets of who I am. I am a Christian first and every thing else comes second. This guy said he was a Christian first and a naturist second and I can’t really see a problem with that at all. In fact that’s what I say over and over again should be the case, with any subject.
All in all, though I am not myself a nudist or naturist, I don’t see why there’s any reason why I shouldn’t be. While I probably won’t use some of the arguments naturists use because they’re weak, but they do have strong arguments and I do see their point and history backs them up. The thing I think most speaks to me is that for the first couple of hundred years of church history, baptisms were done in the nude as a symbol of rebirth, so that makes it likely that Jesus was also baptized in the nude. I mean, if you only have really one main set of clothes, why get them wet and nasty? It just makes sense. Also, C. S. Lewis was known for swimming in the nude and you know how we Christians love his work. So think about it. Look it up, you won’t find many pictures of nude people on Christian Naturist sites so you need not be concerned.
If God had meant us to be nude, he’d have created us that way…er… no, if God had meant us to be nude, we’d be born that w…. um, wait… ah shoot. Live nude and prosper.
P. S. You probably think I’m gonna tell you I wrote this naked.
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Wind power distribution is similarly small, however, there's no one big place like a desert where one may put *all* the wind turbines. Wind resources are far more spread out.
Also, as they are now doing in California, it is economical to place solar panels on the roofs of flat roofed buildings. A store like a Walmart or something similar can produce quite a bit of power in a day. You should check out the new Sam's Club in Fayetteville AR with their innovative use of dimming lights coupled with skylights. Very seamless. All that is needed is to place solar panels between the skylights on the roof and it is a complete system.
One benefit of solar is that it can be used anywhere unlike wind and hydro. Sure, you may not get as much in Winnipeg as you do in Tucson, but you'll still get some.
Monday, June 8, 2009
You have so much POWER! Thanks for re-posting my comment. :) I was so irritated yesterday. OK, now I was being a little flippant about the being the whole republican thing -which I think you know that although I lean conservatively, I'm independent. I was just doing what you hate by grouping all of those people together so I felt like claiming to be all of the above.
You know that I'm never trying to insult you.(ex. You saying "Just maybe you are." in regards to my usage of the word "bias" instead of "point of view". Or perhaps you were suggesting I was wrong- I just thought of that scenario. We shouldn't really talk this way, it's so much easier to hear the tone of voice in person.) This seems to be a running theme of ours. Perhaps we are both too sensitive. But, I have to say that aside, that you are kind of contracting yourself in that last paragraph, "And the fact is, anyone who claims to be without bias is full of shit. ...... I think maybe you should try using the term "point of view" instead of bias because it is a loaded word, and insinuates that I'm the one who's looking at it wrong. Just maybe you are." The only reason I used the word biased to begin with was because of your own comment, "Oh, and I never claimed to be without bias, I'm biased left right and center. I'm biased against anyone's message if it doesn't mesh with Jesus."
so which is it? Am I wrong to use the very word you used to describe yourself? I wasn't trying to be rude.
So proper word usage aside, I have never read anything on here- and I haven't ready EVERYTHING so there is a good chance that I missed it somewhere- that has made your ideals line up on the right. When you say you are unbiased yet only ever seem to talk to how republicans are wrong (I am generalizing, I realize) and Christ is more like the democrats and/or left, well, do you see where I'm going? I don't think your "point of view" is wrong, I think some people are wrong in the way they think, but it's a hefty thing to tell someone that what they think is wrong, because there are so many contributing factors to how they were raised, etc. to judge that in a person.
I think you are right to judge according to the bible, but people interpret things differently than you do sometimes. It doesn't make them WRONG just because you think they are and your biblical interpretation is different. I think this is your blog and you can say whatever you want to, but you do come across left biased because that is all I've ever read on here. AND again, I haven't read everything you have written, it just seems to be a theme on here. Which is OK, this is your place to rant just like my blog is my place to rant. It feels good to rant. My only concern is that you generalize so much of what I believe in to be wrong, and I'm not blind. I'm not stupid. I have come to my conclusions as logically and biblically based as you have. And I don't think you are wrong. Maybe you think I am wrong, and I'm ok with that. I think we have different opinions on several topics, but I would rather concentrate on our similarities as Christians. It seems to me just as much as it seems to you that there is an "us vs. them" scenario in left and right because each side comes across that way.
I hope I'm explaining myself here in a way that isn't abrasive, I am trying very specifically not to be because I want you to understand clearly where I'm coming from. I think we disagree on a lot of things, but I don't think that makes you wrong or me right.
and on a different note: I don't like Hannity, Rush or Beck. But if a Christian who happens to be a Republican likes someone who shares their political views, what is the problem? surely there is some amazing talk show host or even tv personality that is more left that you enjoy listening to! You thanked B for turning you to the radio station, so surely you like ONE of the hosts. Isn't it a tinsey weensey judgmental of you to have a problem with a Christian Republican liking Hannity when you probably enjoy a left version of him? and if you don't, obviously this whole comparison is a moot point. lol
anything that seems rude, please don't take it as such. I have no malice here, it's just that, like I said, that the words don't come across here like they do in person. :) I hate committing to publishing this in case there is something that could be mis-construed to a insulting degree... geez I'm such a girl sometimes!
and I'm so very glad that you enjoy that radio station, I need to check it out. For real.
Sorry if it came off a little harsh, but (I have no problems with generalizing) some people just haven't thought for a second that they might be wrong, so, just consider that. If we were talking in person you'd have seen me say that with eyebrows raised with an inquisitive look and tone of voice. Not at all meant to be harsh, but written words can do that.
I'm not exactly sure why you think I'm contradicting myself with the use of the word biased, I am biased, but not to the left as you think. Whenever I come upon a subject that needs considering, I eventually run it through the rule number one and rule number two test. If you think for a minute, you'll know what these are, (number two is often linked with the golden rule.) In fact most stuff just gets run through rule number two. That's why I am against torture in all circumstances, I don't think it should be done to me. So sure, I'm biased, for Jesus, but my point of view is from the center, it matters not upon which side the opinions land, the point of view is from the center. The funny thing about the fence (or in this case let's call it the neutral zone, I like Star Trek,) is that you can never land exactly on the center, and republicans being the Romulans in this case, always think you are on the other side. I've had this conversation with a few people more than you, and I always get the same stuff to deal with. Had a great conversation with a guy who I think thinks he's a libertarian (probably not) and I agreed more with him than any one I've ever talked to before.
I'm sorry you haven't read all the posts because I think I am repeating myself when I say I'm not against the right siding with the left. The funny thing about where I usually get cross with the right is actually the subtitle to "God's Politics." The right gets it wrong and the left doesn't get it. So as I've said before, I don't have to tell Christians to stay away from liberals because it doesn't seem to be a problem. Liberals take care of that themselves. Some liberal politicians are the most greasy people in the world, but on the other hand, I'd rather go hunting with a liberal than Dick Cheney. If a guy will defend torture to the American public, who even knows what he'll do with a gun when you're not paying attention.
Again with the problem of us versus them, just because my ideals don't line up with the right doesn't mean I'm on the left. I can say this because I have no problems with generalizations and because I've talked to enough of you to say: I just don't think you get the concept of someone not being on either side. Just because I'm left of you (I'll certainly admit that) doesn't mean that I'm left proper.
And no, I don't enjoy a left version of Rush or Beck or Hannity, because I don't think there is one, not in the daytime anyway. Nobody on the left called McCain a traitor or a terrorist or dishonorable or an extremist (a word now part of Hannity's opening theme played every day.) There just is no one like that in the pop left. Of course there's a reason I don't listen on the weekends, the more nutty guys are on then. Seriously, they don't get a whole lot worse than Jon Stewart, though many are technically smarter but probably not as funny. Every day Hannity is all about the national debt being 11 trillion but he never remembers to tell the audience that 10 trillion of that was accrued during republican presidencies. It's just dishonest. Remember during the campaign the use of the word "elite"? That word was used by guys with a baker's dozen houses and 100 million dollar salaries. How exactly does that work? So, no, there is no left Rush because no one makes that much money. There's no left Beck because no one is that much of a fear monger. There's no left Hannity because none are that disgraceful, and there's no left O'Reilly because none are that loud. And I'd know because I listen to all of them. If you'd like to try on of the progressive guys, try Thom Hartmann, he's on at the same time as Rush. am1090seattle.com or airamerica.com
Witty wrapup goes here.