Cook County Pop Tax is 1,422% Higher than the Beer Tax.

Let them have beer! I just learned today that the Cook County Pop Tax (Soda Tax outside the Midwest) is 1,422% higher than the tax that’s charged for beer. I guess drinking pop is the bigger sin.

Cook County Illinois charges $0.09/gallon tax on beer while charging $0.01/ounce for pop. One gallon is 128 ounces. So we’re paying an extra $1.28 per gallon of pop while only paying an extra $0.09 per gallon for beer. I wish I liked beer.

In fact, liquor taxes are also much less providing it’s under 20 percent alcohol. Under 14 percent alcohol the Pop Tax is 533.33% higher and if the alcohol is between 14 percent and 20 percent the Pop Tax is 284.44% higher. Only when we get to more than 20 percent alcohol is the alcohol tax higher by 195% over the Pop Tax

Section 74-352(a)(4) shows the relevant beer tax.

Two opinions – One Sea Level Rise Study

In the constant back and forth over “climate change” (I still so hate that term as it is so nebulous as to be totally meaningless) and the rate of rising seas posted an article with the headline, “Satellite snafu masked true sea-level rise for decades“.  The headline alone leads you to believe that water has been rising up on the shorelines in an accelerated pace for decades. But a prominent climate scientist who is not one of the so-called “97% of climate scientists” that are alarmist over “climate change” had a different take once he bothered to read a little deeper.

Here’s an excerpt from the article on

The numbers didn’t add up. Even as Earth grew warmer and glaciers and ice sheets thawed, decades of satellite data seemed to show that the rate of sea-level rise was holding steady — or even declining.

Now, after puzzling over this discrepancy for years, scientists have identified its source: a problem with the calibration of a sensor on the first of several satellites launched to measure the height of the sea surface using radar. Adjusting the data to remove that error suggests that sea levels are indeed rising at faster rates each year.

Dr. Roy Spencer, a climate research scientist at the University of Alabama, saw the headline and at first drew the same conclusion. But then he thought to read the rest of the story and look at the supporting documents.

When I read that, I (like everyone else) assumed that corrections to the satellite sea level data since 1993 have now led to a revised trend toward faster (not slower) sea level rise. Right?


During the satellite era (since 1993), the trend in sea level rise was revised downward, by almost 10%, from 3.28 mm/year to about 3.0 mm/year. (For those concerned about Miami going underwater, these numbers equate to a little more than one inch every 10 years). This result was published back in April in Geophysical Research Letters, and the new Nature study looks at the wiggles in the revised data since 1993 and makes ominous pronouncements about sea level rise “acceleration”.

I’m calling “fake science news” on the Nature reporter who covered the story. The headline was technically correct…but misleading.

Here’s the conclusion from the paper on which both opinions are based.

The new approach based on the GMSL budget indicates a drift of 1.5 ± 0.5 mm/yr, in agreement with the preferred value of Watson et al. [2015] but lower than Zawadzki et al. [2016]. Applying this correction over the first 6 years of the altimetry record leads to lower GMSL rate (of 3.0 ± 0.15 mm/yr) over the altimetry era than previously assumed. More importantly, the GMSLrise since the mid-2000s shows significant increase compared to the 1993–2004 time span. This contradicts conclusion of previous studies [e.g., Cazenave et al., 2014] that reported slowing down of about 30% of the GMSL rise during the years 2000s (without TOPEX A drift correction), attributed to La Niña events. Here we show that in spite of the several temporary sea level drops caused by La Niña events, the GMSL rise has increased during the last decade.

It’s funny how all this controversy is about 3mm over 6 years. We need an analog to Chicken Little for rising seas because the sky was not falling and our continents are not drowning.

Here’s the article on

Here’s Dr. Roy Spencer’s opinion on his blog

Here’s a link to the study

The Republican Party is all show and no go.

The Republican party is all show and no go. What a disappointing first 6 months with President Trump in office. These knuckle heads kept passing Obamacare repeal bills while President Obama was still in office. They did so knowing he would veto every single one if they made it to his desk. Now, they have a President that doesn’t really care what bill they pass. All he wants them to do is pass one so he can declare victory and these numb-nuts  can’t get out of their own way to get something passed.

This shows me that they are more worried about the next election cycle than they are about the country. It shows me that all their bluster about President Obama’s policies were just that… bluster. If they can’t pass legislation now that they have wanted to pass for the last 6 years then it tells me they never really wanted to pass this crap in the first place.

The Affordable Care Act was anti-American from the start. With its insurance purchase mandate (which was disappointingly upheld by the Supreme Court because they created language that didn’t exist in the law by calling the mandate a “tax”), mandatory coverage of pre-existing conditions, and the truly anti-competitive insurance exchanges this abomination should have never passed through Congress. But it did. And it did with ONLY Democrat votes. Not a single Republican voted for it.

Now, the Republicans having a majority in both the House and Senate, with a President that will SIGN ANYTHING, and they are incapable of, at the very least, fully repealing this anti-American law.

How pathetic!

CMOS and the effect of the rolling shutter.

CMOS and the effect of the rolling shutter. If you’ve ever wondered why your cell phone camera produces strange effects when taking video this will explain it all. Very cool stuff.

File this under, “They Can Dish It Out But They Can’t Take It”

File this under, “They Can Dish It Out But They Can’t Take It”.   President Trump tweets this:

And the media reacts like this:

Is it any wonder why he does it? How can the news media be so thin skinned? President Trump isn’t advocating violence against the media he’s dressing them down in a humorous way. No thinking person, in my opinion, can take the tweeting of that ridiculous video as a threat against anyone.

When Democrats claim that the Republican plan to “repeal and replace” the ACA (aka Obamacare) will kill thousands of people can that be construed as a threat against Republicans? How do you think supporters of the ACA would react if they truly believe that Republicans want them and their loved ones to die just so Republicans can give “tax cuts to the rich”.

Maybe members of the media should get a clue and stop covering President Trump’s every tweet. Most of his tweets are nonsense and don’t matter to a hill of beans to bettering the country. Most of it is not news worthy. But, because he’s taking jabs at the news media they are so self centered and thin skinned that they can’t take it.

Once again I’m back in style! All I have to do is wait long enough.

Once again I’m back in style! All I have to do is wait long enough. When you don’t change for decades the styles all eventually come back around to you. Normal jeans are back baby!

The stretch backlash gained momentum in 2015 when streetwear label Vetements, designed by Demna Gvasalia, repurposed vintage Levi’s, said Barneys fashion director Marina Larroudé. “Fashion insiders were getting old 501s tailored for a long time, but Gvasalia brought [reworked Levi’s] to a wider audience,” she said. Despite a four-figure price tag, Vetements’ pure cotton jeans—pieced together from various vintage pairs—were a hit.

But $850.00 for a pair of jeans from Dior? Give me a break! As a matter of fact, give me a $50.00 pair of Levi’s 501 jeans and I’ll make it work for 10 years.

From the Wall Street Journal

What’s the deal with Android and the Nexus 5X?

What’s the deal with Android and the Nexus 5X? I was using this phone almost since it was released to the public and it was a good phone… for about a year. After that the phone got bogged down like a Windows XP machine that hasn’t been rebooted in 2 years. This happened to me with the Moto X and the Samsung Galaxy S5.

First there would be random crashes of apps as well as Android itself. Then, while trying to use the camera app it would crash or lag or lag then crash. But, the most frustrating thing over the last 6 months was the disappearing picture problem and this problem only occurred on the Nexus 5X. I never encountered this on any previous phone.

What’s the disappearing picture problem you say? It’s when you take a picture, see the preview in the little gallery icon in the lower right of the screen, close the camera app and go on about your life. You open the photos app later to look at your photo and it’s not there. So you open the camera app and you can see the photo you  took in the little gallery icon and then **poof** it disappears. Gone forever.

There must be some God awful memory management happening in Android for this to happen. In my mind, what is happening is that the picture is taken, loaded into RAM, but for some reason never makes it onto permanent storage in the phone.

Things got so bad with my Nexus 5X that I briefly flirted with the HTC U11 (which I didn’t like at all and promptly returned) and ended up buying a Pixel. Originally when the Pixel came out I refused to buy it because it was too expensive and kind of homely. But, if I want a good smartphone without getting trapped by Apple the Google phones are the only choice. The pure Android OS is still the best for me… for about a year per phone. Then it all goes to shit.

Why?!? Google fix this fucking OS please!