Friday miscellany

by M.D. Creekmore on July 12, 2013 · 38 comments

1. Hillary Clinton Taps Speechmaking Gold Mine : “For about $200,000, Mrs. Clinton will offer pithy reflections and Mitch Albom-style lessons from her time as the nation’s top diplomat.” Personally, I would not make the time or effort go down to the end of my driveway to listen to her talk.

2. Gas prices expected to surge again soon : “Gas prices are heading up again. Rising crude oil prices and a fall in U.S. supplies are driving wholesale gas prices up sharply. That has yet to be fully reflected at the retail level.”

3. More NSA leaks coming from Edward Snowden? “U.S. intelligence officials are braced for more disclosures of National Security Agency eavesdropping secrets.” What else could they have to hide?

4. Smart move on their part – Kremlin returns to typewriters to avoid computer leaks: “The Kremlin is returning to typewriters in an attempt to avoid damaging leaks from computer hardware, it has been claimed.”

5. The Amount of Americans That Cannot Take Care of Themselves Without Government Assistance Continues To Explode : “As the number of good jobs continues to decline, the number of Americans that cannot take care of themselves without government assistance continues to explode. On Friday, we learned that the U.S. economy added “195,000 jobs” last month. But when you look deeper at the numbers, another story emerges. Last month, the U.S. economy actually lost 240,000 full-time jobs.”

6. New studies on H7N9 raise pandemic concerns : “Two research teams that conducted a massive number of experiments on the new H7N9 influenza virus found more signs that it could be a pandemic virus, though their animal tests showed that its ability to spread through coughs and sneezes isn’t as robust as seasonal flu.”

7. New bird flu virus ‘could spark pandemic’ : “A new bird flu virus responsible for at least 37 deaths in China since March has the potential to spark a global outbreak, researchers say.”

38 comments

Mystery Guest July 12, 2013 at 9:53 am

1. I don’t have 200,00 dollars and I sure wouldn’t spend it to listen to a bunch of garbage if I did have it.
2. Follow the bouncing gas prices till it hurts.
3. Man I wonder how much he does know??????
4. Now this I had a good laugh with. But they may be smart in the long run. But alas they should have invested in manual typewriters in case the SHTF and there is no electricity.
5. These numbers will only get worse.
6. & 7. Now this is something we have to be on the alert for, but is something that we cannot control if indeed it pollutes the country.

Ghost July 12, 2013 at 10:51 am

This week we canned a bunch of Mac & Cheese, one of my 24 cats died, I bought 1 billion rounds of 9mm ammo (storing it at the bottom of the swimming pool) and my DW found a wonderful recipe for WD 40 soup…..Oh wait, “What did you do to prep this week” comes tomorrow…….sorrry

Ghost July 12, 2013 at 12:37 pm

Oh, just in case you are wondering, we dehydrated about 40 gallons of water, then canned that too.

JP in MT July 12, 2013 at 1:48 pm

When I was stationed in Berlin, Germany you could buy cans of “Berliner Luft” – canned air. I got mine at a flea market with a black and white label instead of the newer color one.

Ghost July 12, 2013 at 3:49 pm

Canned Air, I love that stuff! Stores forever if you keep it in a seal-a meal vacuum pouch too.

Ghost July 12, 2013 at 3:52 pm

By the way JP, are there any Lesbian Ducks in MT? Here in MN they are coming out of the duct work.

JP in MT July 12, 2013 at 4:51 pm

They are getting less and less.

Ghost July 12, 2013 at 5:10 pm

JP
Don’t fall for any of that “Lite” canned air that they sell in those floating bags in the grocery stores.

I tried it once and it made me lightheaded and I talked “funny” for a minute of two…just say’n.

caoimhin July 12, 2013 at 11:19 am

When I came to work yesterday at 0700 the price of gas at Smiths (Kroger in some parts) was 3.18. When I went home at 1500 it was 3.29 That was a fast jump.

JP in MT July 12, 2013 at 1:49 pm

I pull out tomorrow for a trip half way across the state; diesel went up .05 this AM. I wonder what the return trip will be like?

Rob in Ontario July 12, 2013 at 8:39 pm

here gas jumps up by 15cents a litre thats about .75 cents a gallon and it happens all the time

riverrider July 12, 2013 at 11:21 am

gas jumped 14 cents here just yesterday. they say more coming. i remember when 100.00 a barrel oil meant 1.79 a gallon……snowden? could be he stumbled across the embedded spyware in all our computers and i-phones thanks to the libtards at apple/microsoft etc. frankly, he has not “revealed” anything yet that i hadn’t seen before. i knew about stuxnet five years ago, and the telecom eavesdropping long before that. hell it was on sixty minutes once. guess nobody watches them anymore. a poll said the majority of folks think he’s a hero, not a traitor. me too. we need more….zim’s case should wrap up today. the defenses’ closing arguements left a lot to be desired. don’t matter anyway, the fix is in. must appease the hoods. makes me sick to my stomach. sic semper tyrannis. out.

axelsteve July 12, 2013 at 11:35 am

In Komradfornia we pay 4 bucks for el cheapo regular.

Sirius July 12, 2013 at 12:01 pm

At my local Shell station last night at about 9:30 PM it was 3.97/gal. This morning at 5:30 AM it was 4.15/gal. I know the fuel truck didn’t deliver because the station closes at 10 PM and opens at 6AM. Fuel deliveries take about an hour, require a station rep to be present, and are usually on Mondays around 4 PM.

How come gas stations raise prices of product they have already paid for?

(Smacks self in head). That’s right, duh! It’s to “protect” the consumer. You can’t have everyone buying your cheaper gas that you already paid for and run the risk of running out.

Seriously though. I know profit margins on gas are around 1% or less for stations, but this “Industry Standard” of setting prices on the daily commodity prices smacks of price manipulation. Especially since stations won’t lower those same prices until the next tanker delivery comes in at a lower price.

Bam Bam July 12, 2013 at 6:06 pm

Sirius,

The price we pay at gas stations reflects replacement cost not actual cost.

Sirius July 13, 2013 at 12:18 am

Bam Bam,

I’m not trying to argue, I’m genuinely interested in how the math works. If you could help me with it, I’d be grateful.

The guy at my Shell station checks prices every day and adjusts sales prices every day. Yet, they never get adjusted down until a new shipment arrives. For instance, he gets topped off on Monday, and prices rise usually on Wednesday and on Friday for the weekend. If oil and/or production prices have dropped before then, the price won’t change until after he is refueled the following Monday.

How does he calculate replacement cost when his product hasn’t been replaced yet? I’ve asked him but he won’t give me an answer.

Gas prices have always perplexed me. He wasn’t the first and won’t be the last station owner I’ll ask, but until I get a straight answer from one of them, I’ll have to make conclusions based on the information that I have.

Can you help explain?

Portman90201 July 13, 2013 at 8:28 am

The price of fuels may have been determined months ago. The price of crude oil is set days, months ahead of its delivery to the refiner. The raw product.. crude.. is pumped into the refinery and cooked down that very day into its fractions and fuels then blended and knock tested and pumped out that same day to the refiners bulk storage. Only enough crude is stored on site to maintain smooth operations. The bulk storage is sold to ANY Retailer with a bloody tanker transport available. It does matter if you tanked up at Costco. or Shell… The juice came from who ever could provide timely delivery. In my area you are burning either BP. or Valero fuels… period…. period… Does not matter the name on the pump. You cannot figure out who’s is who’s when it comes out of a generic.. independent haulers tanker.

Think of it this way… if you have the average storage area of a min. of 10 half million gallon tanks and you keep then a full as your able… Not very full most of the time… how would you be able to figure the cost of any one tanker load… averaging?

I sure don’t have any answers as to the jumps and falls of fuels … I do recall the old truth of “SUPPLY…. AND DEMAND” determining end cost.

JP in MT July 13, 2013 at 10:30 am

Sirius:

If I may offer a bit of an explanation.

First, no offense intended, but I take it you never owned a business. A business owner is not in it (generally) for the sake of the consumer, he is in it to make money.

If your actual cost goes down (new shipment) then you can lower the price. If your potential replacement cost goes up, you raise the price as needed to make sure you can pay for the replacement.

Also, due to price volatility, you really can’t afford to wait until your resupply. If his 5,000 gallon tank goes up $.50/gal between resupply, his cost of keeping his doors open (do to the profit margin decrease) may not be something he can handle.

Most business owners don’t want confused/upset customers. They would rather not keep changing prices, it takes time and in business that means it costs him money because he’s not doing something profitable with his time (management time = overhead, a bad thing).

Most small business owners have everything invested in their business. Their home, their retirement, and their current income. If the business fails, they go back to zero (or worse) and have to start over (usually at 40+)! Again, not fun. I have a friend that started over 12 times, his employee’s lived better than he did, and didn’t “make it” until he was in his late 50′s. He died in his early 60′s from the stress, having just taken his first vacation.

So, try not to be too hard on your local small business owner. They support most of the jobs in the current economy, and without them it would just be major corporations and the government (wouldn’t that be a fun world).

Hope this helps.

Sirius July 13, 2013 at 1:37 pm

JP,

None taken, but you take it wrong. I have owned a business and I’m well aware of the failure to success ratio. I’m also aware of different inventory systems, product cost pricing models, profit/loss calculation models and margins, overhead factors, insurance costs and factors, as well as problems and benefits associated with employees.

I’m also aware that each business has its own way of factoring and valuating replacement and sales costs. What I don’t know enough about is how gas stations do that, and more specifically, how they do that in relation to the product they sell at the pump. If I didn’t make that question clear before, that’s my fault.

What I was asking was more along the lines of “retail gas price setting at the consumer level for dummies” type of question.

The station owners are under no obligation to explain it to me for any number of reasons, and I get that.

Like you, I’m all for small business. And like everyone else, I get frustrated at the cost of gas because we have to fill up so much and so often.

This last big price increase just got my britches in a bunch so much that I forgot that there’s just nothing I can do about it and wanted to know the how and why gas prices are set the way they are.

Sw't Tater July 12, 2013 at 11:53 pm

axelsteve,
You mean they sell something other than “cheapo regular? :>)

tommy2rs July 12, 2013 at 12:54 pm

#1 Wouldn’t walk across the street to spit on her if she was on fire.
#2 yep, heading out to fill all the empty cans and vehicles here shortly.
#3 “What else could they have to hide?” More than we’ll ever know, I doubt Snowden got even the tip of the iceberg
#4 That reminds me, I need to get some more ribbons for the typewriter I have stored.
#’s 5, 6, 7 This world needs a really effective pandemic.

Zaeda July 12, 2013 at 2:14 pm

My Great Grandmother uses to say that a plague or war was needed every so often to reduce populace on the Earth. She’d say it a lot =(

Draq wraith July 13, 2013 at 4:48 am

Was your grandmother a hate filled person?
I really wonder that.
I have plentybpf hate filled people in my family but I blame it on bad preachers.

Portman90201 July 13, 2013 at 8:50 am

I think your Granny had it pretty much right Zaeda. “Extinction is the rule not the exception” Who said that……?

NANN! July 12, 2013 at 1:35 pm

I wonder if #3 has anything to do with Janet Napolitano plan to resign. Does anybody really believe it’s to accept a position as president of a college?

tommy2rs July 12, 2013 at 7:33 pm

This article about the resignation tickled me:
http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2013/07/12/Gosar-on-Big-Sis-resignation-One-down-one-to-go-time-for-Holder-to-resign-too
Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) said Friday that the resignation of President Barack Obama’s Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano is not enough. He said Attorney General Eric Holder should step down too.

“One down and one to go,” Gosar said in a statement. “While Secretary Napolitano may be gone she will not be forgotten. Her inaction and incompetence on border security will continue to plague our nation for years to come.”

Then there was the suckup McCain.
McCain rushed to praise Napolitano for her work, saying she “served our nation with honor.”
Yeah, right.

NANN! July 12, 2013 at 8:08 pm

One to go? Hell, a whole sh*t-load to go! Nearly all of Congress should follow her lead, and take that Usurper-in-chief with them!
As for McCain…he’s a pathetic little puke who knows nothing about honor. He makes me sick.

PS- don’t ask me how I really feel.

Draq wraith July 13, 2013 at 4:53 am

She left to be a president of a California college.
How many see this as fitting?

hvaczach July 12, 2013 at 1:39 pm

1- Boo! enough said
2-Of course they are watch the economy flounder some more!
3- We don’t really evan want to know how much dirty laundry they have piled up.
4- those crazy russkies!
5- It isn’t can not it is will not for the most part, don’t want to generalize but far to many are system leaches who have no desire or will to improve their stock in life.
6- Can do nothing about it so don’t have time to worry yet, and if it happens I believe the world hits the “reset button” every few hundred years.
7- ditto
5-

TG July 12, 2013 at 3:11 pm

1, I might pay her to go away, then again, as a mom I have learned how to tune out ‘annoying’

2, I hope everyone has their bikes and walking shoes ready. They wont be happy until gas prices are too high for us little people.

3, I wonder how little info he really has. What is happening that we have no clue about?

4, typewriter? What is that? Lol.

5, I read a story yesterday about some guy in Alabama that walked into a bank with a note saying he had a gun and wanted some money. He got the money, locked it in the car then sat on a bench and waited for police. He would rather go to jail, have a roof and 3 meals, then face homelessness.

6 and 7, not much to do but watch and wait, and make sure you have a plan and supplies.

T.R. July 12, 2013 at 4:36 pm
Ghost July 12, 2013 at 5:19 pm

About the Zimmerman trial. I know that some sites are posting garbage coming from The Black Panthers about how that they are going to burn down some white suburbs, should GZ get off.

Thank God this site, and M.D. , have more sense to go into such obvious “Race Baiting” to pump up their readership numbers.

Sure defend yourself if it comes to it, but two wrongs never make a right.

Stay safe M.D. and The Pack.

T.R. July 12, 2013 at 7:12 pm

Let them try , I would have no problems shooting .

Draq wraith July 13, 2013 at 5:08 am

1. She would have to pay me 2oo,ooo to listen to her.
especially after her answer of “we should give socialism a try.” When she challenged Obama for the office of president nod.

2 we are about ready for a summer to winter gas blend switch over.
be prepared to give utility it hurts.

3 I honestly think of false flags.
he leaked already leaked stuff and it is distracting people from what the government is doing
6,7 should also include the Saudi mers cornea virus.

4

Draq wraith July 13, 2013 at 5:10 am

Make that nasal bug not eye.
14 deaths so far.

Sirius July 13, 2013 at 1:07 pm

J.P.,

None taken. Yes, I have owned a business. Mine was service related with no product overhead. I’m well aware of the pitfall to success ratio. Mine was actually profitable starting at month three and remained that way for four years until the dot com crash in 2000.

I’m also aware of what’s required in a product related business, LIFO/FIFO and that each cost/sale, profit/loss margin is different. Since each business is unique in how it factors and calculates these (keeping within generally accepted business practices) within its industry, my question was more to the point of how gas stations specifically do it.

If I didn’t get the point of my question across, that was my failure. My point of not getting answers from the station owners could be for multitudes of reasons for each of them. After all, they don’t know me as anything other than a customer.

Like you, I’m all for small business. I guess what I was asking was more along the lines of gas station fuel pricing for dummies.

If my frustration showed through earlier its just that, like everyone else, I spend so much, so often for fuel, that I sometimes forget that there’s nothing I can do about it.

This last big, seemingly unexplained price increase just got my britches in a bunch.

Sirius July 13, 2013 at 2:02 pm

Huh,

I guess this reply did go through before my cell phone crashed. I thought it didn’t. Apologies to the Pack for repeating myself.

JP in MT July 21, 2013 at 10:15 pm

Sirius,

No problem. Plus someone else without your experience may not know some of this stuff. My DW works for a major petroleum retailer here in MT and has for the last 12+ years. She still is a little fuzzy one the nuts and bolts of fuel pricing.

I just spent a week in central Montana, in the town with the refineries right there or within 35 miles. Gas was about 10 cents cheaper but diesel (which I use in the truck) was just about what I pay at home.

I just gave up trying to figure it our, buy what I need, and try to save the money elsewhere. And fuel, especially diesel, drives the cost of EVERY thing else. We are so dependent upon it, especially in producing food!

Sure am glad the President’s energy policy is working for “the common man”. Wasn’t fuel $1.85 when he went into office?

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