New Year Day 2023 – My Resolutions

Last night Camera Girl and I rang in the New Year in our traditional manner by going to sleep at about 11 pm.  That’s right.  We missed Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest and a host of musical nobodies and cultural degenerates.  Interestingly it was 11:58 pm when we were awakened by what I assumed was a thermonuclear detonation but turned out to be what I assume were some sticks of dynamite being tossed around by one of my more excitable neighbors here in Dunwich.  After assuring myself that the house was still on its foundations, we wished each other Happy New Year and turned back over to sleep.

I hope everyone enjoyed their night last night, whether by celebrating with friends or singing along as Miley Cyrus tele-visually twerked to Auld Lange Syne.  And now we find ourselves in 2023 and like everyone else we look back on 2022 and make some course corrections to help us achieve our goals in the New Year.

And I have.  I looked at my poor performance at finishing up my story and realized that I needed a better daily schedule.  Or rather weekly schedule.  And so, I’ve blocked out my time to write fiction, write for the blog, work, remind Camera Girl that I still live here and take care of all the things that need doing around this place.

So, this morning I woke up, almost on time, and followed my plan, mostly.  And by golly it definitely helped.  I accomplished more in one morning than I’ve gotten done in the last three weeks.  Now granted the holidays are generally the worst time of the year for getting work done but I can see that following a schedule will significantly increase my productivity.  And probably getting that writing done in the morning was the best choice.  So here I am, a paragon of virtue on day one of the new world order and somewhat smarmy with self-regard.

I’ve also managed to get the web site test bed up and running on my computer and I will shortly be testing out some changes I’m thinking about.  And doing it this way I’m less likely to blow up the site by accident.  So, once again, paragon of virtue.

So, who’s better than me?  I ask you!

Of course, my track record on maintaining resolutions past New Year’s Day has not previously been stellar.  So, we will have to see how things pan out.  But I am brimming with optimism, good intentions and fat-soluble vitamins so let’s give me the benefit of the doubt.

And in line with my new regimen, I will be careful to prevent any unbridled enthusiasm over current events from erupting into overblown optimism about political saviors putting our political house in order.  From now on I’ll applaud attempts at improving things by well-intentioned individuals but I will refrain from declaring anything an outright victory until it’s confirmed by the regime.  Let’s say a declaration of defeat by the New York Times or the Washington Post.

And this is fine.  There will still be occasion to laugh when a Fredo or someone of that ilk is cast into the abyss by his own handlers or when Dopey Joe rolls down the ramp from Air Force One.  I’ll just make sure I don’t read more into these things than they deserve.  Moderation in all things.

So here we go.  “O brave new world that has such people in it.”  Let the games begin.

New Year’s Eve 2022 – Reflections

It’s expected that we look back at the end of the year and try to draw some conclusions about what happened during the Earth’s last revolution around the Sun.  And I guess I see the value in that.  Some of the observations may not be very profound but there is value in reflecting on the various events and how they have or have not impacted our lives.  And we can look at trends and extrapolate on how those things will play out over the next year and beyond.  So, let’s say there’s value.

Looking back on the year, what stands out is the depths of the Republicans’ defeat by the Democrats.  I would say that there is no comparable example of an incumbent party in such a disastrous economy surviving a mid-term with so little damage to their ranks.  We are in a different place.  Whether it’s the ballot harvesting or a new majority of Americans out there, is hard for me to say.  Maybe it’s both.  But the importance of this new reality is impossible to overstate.

At the same time, I think we’ve reached the end of the awakening of the American population as to how their country is actually run.  Nobody believes in the myths of election fairness or unbiased behavior by the bureaucrats who really run this country.  Everyone has seen how the FBI and the courts treat Democrats and Republicans differently.  And this is the positive flip-side of the Democrats’ victory.  Everyone on the Right knows we’re being cheated and there will be no reconciliation.  The best the Left can expect is sullen resignation.  And if the opportunity ever arises, they can expect pay back.

On the economic front Biden’s war on hydrocarbons is having the expected results.  Almost every facet of the economy is suffering from very significant cost increases.  Food, energy, transportation and anything that has to be manufactured and shipped is more expensive.  Inflation is running between 10% and 20% depending on how you compute it.

The higher fuel costs are permanent.  And the current inflation is predicted to throw the economy into recession in 2023.  The layoffs that have already begun will reduce the inflation to some extent.  People will have to tighten their belts and save money where they can.  Those who lose their jobs are in for a really bad time.

Another trend that looks to be continuing is the migration from blue states like California and New York to red states like Texas and Florida.  Some is just economic reality because of the realities of blue state life; high taxes and bad business policy.  But some of it is people escaping the craziness.  And you can’t blame them.  The Blue cities have descended into chaos and the woke laws in these blue states cancel the freedoms we’re supposed to have under the Constitution.

As far as the Ukraine War, it’s very hard to say how all of that will end.  If the Russians have the wherewithal to crush the Ukraine, and I think they do, we’re going to be looking at a new international order.  If the Russians form a durable bloc with the Chinese the United States and Europe will be in a different environment.  Having abandoned industrial capacity in the United States and transferred it to China and more generally Asia, we are liable to lose the financial hegemony that we have enjoyed since the end of World War II.  Even the primacy of the US dollar is not assured.  And the ramifications of America’s descent from a global hegemon to just another competitor state will have very serious consequences for all of us.  We’ve been able to underwrite a defense budget, the size of which almost staggers the imagination.  When that is no longer possible, areas of our economy will contract radically and that will have a knock-on effect for the rest of the economy.  The United States is about to experience what every superpower from Spain to Britain experienced when it was knocked from the top perch of the global hierarchy.

And based on what happened in Afghanistan the people we have in charge of war and foreign policy are not very skilled at what they do.  There is a very real chance that they may botch a crisis.  They may even decide to interfere in the Ukraine war to such an extent that they panic or anger the Russians into a full nuclear exchange.  It’s hard to imagine that happening, but honestly, many people feel we are in a much worse place than we were back at the height of the Cold War.  And if that happens, we can stop thinking about extrapolations.  No one should pretend that they have any idea what the survivors of an all-out nuclear war will face or how things will evolve for humanity from that point.  All that is certain is that life will be infinitely worse than it is now.

But let’s assume for now that we avoid nuclear annihilation in the coming year.  It looks like we have some bad times coming.  The takeaway for me is to avoid incurring debt and build up any capability to earn money through enterprise.  Socially it makes sense to continue to reach out to friends, family and like-minded people to network and help each other any way we can.  And make a point of avoiding any entanglements with the Left at all costs.

So, there’s my review and extrapolation for 2022.  Happy New Year to all those out there.  Be happy and be safe.

31DEC2021 – OCF Update – New Year’s Eve Message

After my very depressing non-predictions post I thought it was a good idea to post something a little bit more balance out the end of the year.

Camera Girl went out and got chicken chop suey from our favorite local Chinese restaurant and we’ll watch some fun movies and celebrate the New Year on a good note.  We’ve managed to eat or give away most of the Christmas leftovers and even most of the Christmas cookies which is quite an accomplishment.  Everyone in the family is doing pretty well and even this state hasn’t resorted to masking in grocery stores or other establishments.  I heard a local health care authority admit on television that the omicron “plague” while causing tremendous numbers of infected is failing to cause many serious cases and even fewer deaths.  It looks like the COVID panic will be allowed to evaporate.  So things are looking up even here in the Evil Empire.

I’m still in the very early stages of learning how to use the new camera (Sony A7 IV).  But so far it checks all the boxes I needed.  Tomorrow, if weather permits, I’ll have Camera Girl unleash the hounds and do a tracking autofocus test on them.  So expect some info soon.  I want to see what the larger file size allows me in cropping my macro shots.

Like everyone else, I’ll be counting my pennies from now on.  Food and everything else is becoming horribly expensive so avoiding waste will have to become a priority.  Luckily Camera girl is very frugal.  I’ll unleash this super power of hers by not calling her cheap anymore.

And finally in the New Year I resolve to spend more of my day writing my fiction.  It will probably cut into my blogging time but I see now it’s unavoidable.  Those morning hours are the only time when creativity exists.

So Happy New Year everyone out there in the big, wide wonderful world that doesn’t believe what Dementia Joe says.  We’ll make progress in 2022 and we’ll figure out a way to prosper despite the awful people who make it their business to torture us.  In fact I predict they will be the ones suffering this year.

Happy New Year.

My 2019 New Year’s Resolutions

I’ve been reading through the resolutions and predictions from various sites.  Pretty dismal stuff.  While I won’t deny that the coming year will be full of rampaging House democrats investigating and impeaching whatever they can, I don’t think throwing up my hands and waiting for the apocalypse is the correct response.

What I think should be done is look at the situation on the ground and figure out ways to make changes.  Granted everything we can do as individuals will be incremental and local but nevertheless, it should be done.  Actions are cumulative and at the local level they can be significant to the individuals around you, especially people you have close ties with.  And action boosts your morale and the morale of those around you.  Pollyannaism isn’t necessary.  It doesn’t do any good to be unrealistically optimistic about the situation we’re in, but refraining from despair is key and making even a small improvement in your local situation is very encouraging.

And in line with that idea, I think it’s important not to spend all your time reading doom and gloom.  Following politics is inherently depressing because so many of the players are terrible human beings.  Make sure you reserve a good chunk of your free time for pleasurable activities that provide uplift and a chance to interact with people who share your interests and point of view.

In the last few months, more folks have been commenting and some of the readers have kindly provided articles of their own to the site.  I find this extremely encouraging and take it as a positive sign for the direction OCF will be going.  A community of like-minded individuals sharing their interests and opinions is the original concept I had for the site and now I am beginning to understand how to attract the people who would be interested in this and how to organize the web pages to accommodate this.

I intend to run some promotions to increase readership substantially which should also expand the scope of the topics covered.  I know about photography and have some literary and musical preferences that I can write to.  Adding individuals with other interests and expertise will expand the circle of people who will be drawn to the content here.

Beyond that, I am interested in having other writers on the political side.  I have had some folks who have expressed interest in this.  But I definitely don’t want the site to be politics 24/7.  As important as it is it would bore me to death.  That’s why I do the Trump humor posts.  I have to break up the horror with some humor.

But let’s do the New Year’s thing.

I resolve to:

  • Put in some time at my fiction writing.
  • Research actionable ideas to improve the political/cultural situation.
  • Identify the best existing cultural, educational and commercial resources in order to avoid wherever possible the corrupt versions around us.
  • Help my family, friends and folks on our side to thrive in this nihilistic culture we’re living in.
  • Share as much happiness and good humor as I can with those on our side of the divide.

Happy New Year everyone.  Stick around and in the New Year stop by and resolve to leave a few comments.  I’d love to hear from you, even if the comment is critical.

31DEC2018 – OCF New Year’s Eve Update

I’ll put together an end of year retrospective of what I think are the important events and items in the various categories that I cover (politics, culture, books, movies, tv and photography).  It’s a good day to reflect and plan for the new year.  I’ve learned a lot about running the site and reaching people so I feel like 2019 will be an important year for the site and a fun year to be a reader here.

New Year’s Resolutions 2018


We’ve done Christmas.  Enormous quantities of delicious, toxic foods have been ingested and now clog our arteries and brains.  Ancestors and descendants, siblings and their relations, friends and in-laws have been hosted, feted and dispatched.  Enormous sums have been expended for gifts that no one will care about or even remember six months from now.  With nothing to look forward to until Memorial Day the bleak winter climate of cold and perpetual twilight saps your very will to live.  What a perfect time to make life altering decisions about your future!

But let’s not waste the opportunity.  Tradition is a powerful force that binds us to the past and informs the future.  So, without further ado…

  • I resolve to send one thousand e-mails a day to each of the following groups for each of the following initiatives:
    1. to ABC advocating that Joy Behar be replaced on the View by a sexbot. But not an attractive, realistic looking one but a really poorly made one.  One that looks awful and has an extremely annoying voice.
    2. to the Democratic National Committee demanding that each male Democrat representative and senator, on account of being male, immediately, pre-emptively resign in favor of a woman. Or, if they really, really want to stay, then immediately begin transitioning to trans-woman status.
    3. to the NFL demanding that Joy Behar be installed as special advisor to the Commissioner on domestic abuse allegations, integrating female players into the League and other women’s issues.
    4. to the National Organization of Women (NOW) demanding O. J. Simpson be installed as special investigator into domestic abuse allegations.
    5. to the Disney Corporation demanding that the part of General Leia Organa be given to Hillary Clinton. I’m with her and so is the Force.
  • I resolve to begin each day visualizing an affirmation featuring the Clintons, Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi wearing those old timey striped prison uniforms and leg irons working on a chain gang like the one in Cool Hand Luke.
  • I resolve to always check all links on Drudge to make sure I’m not clicking on an article from The New York Times, Washington Post, Politico or any other purveyors of fake news.
  • I resolve to boycott the NFL in perpetuity unless they get Kaepernick to grovel and apologize to the police.
  • I resolve to boycott Hollywood in perpetuity unless they expel Woody Allen, Roman Polansky and the other pedophiles and force Meryl Streep force to grovel and apologize to President Trump.
  • I resolve to buy American made products whenever a choice exists.
  • And seriously, I resolve to preferentially support non-leftist alternatives in any and all categories in which I find them.

Happy New Year to all you folks out there.  I’ve been enjoying a holiday with friends and family.  I’ll be gathering my wits and starting to output new material for the site this week.  There are some interesting new things coming up soon including some updates to the site.  So, apologies for the sparse output the last few days but I am only slightly superhuman.

The Pause before the Plunge

Since December 22nd I have been in a veritable cocoon of self-imposed isolation from the world.  I have left the grounds only three times and only once for more than an hour.  I have spent this time, for the most part, reveling in the blissful sloth of a long holiday vacation.  I have eaten delicious and unhealthy food until it is coming out of my ears.  I sat around and watched so many holiday and “classic” movies that I’m tempted to nominate Bing Crosby for sainthood.  And, of course I read so much political news that I feel sure that Trump will give me the nod for Veterans Administration head just on the merits.

But now it’s time to emerge from my cocoon.  Tomorrow (shudder!), I will make the commute back to the office and reconnect with the real world.  I’m not sure what to expect.  I know my desk will be covered with paperwork (actual and virtual) and it will be a week before I’m dug out.  In fact, the beginning of the year is a sprint of deliverables and meetings that will keep me hopping for weeks.  Good, the status quo is restored.

But it’s not.  The impending Trump presidency hangs over everyone like some alien spacecraft hovering over a large city in a sci fi thriller.  Either it’s going to be Independence Day and the hellfire is about to rain down or it’s Star Trek IV and we’re all gonna be bored by some sermon on saving the whales.  But either way it’s up there and until we know which it will be it’s hard to pretend that finishing that power point presentation on quarterly highlights is the most important thing in the world.

Of course, we have to wait another two and a half weeks until this Obama joker gets finished trashing the government and golfing on our nickel.  I doubt there’s a less welcome player on the world stage than BO.  Not even his own party can stand him.  But he’s determined to cause the maximum annoyance until they pull the curtain down on this clown.  Lord, give me patience.

But regardless if you’re Ann Coulter or Rosie O’Donnell there’s no denying that Donald Trump is the biggest story and none of us know for sure exactly what he’ll do.  Now, I’m firmly ensconced on the right periphery of the political spectrum.  I hope that Trump starts off his administration with a rapid reversal of all Obama’s executive orders and moves on to appointing Torquemada to the Supreme Court and Genghis Khan to the Justice Department.  Then they could take on a joint project of structuring a RICO prosecution that includes BLM and George Soros.  But only someone who has been asleep for the last thirty years can be unaware of how badly reality can deviate from even the most reasonable forecasts.

In early 1992 no one could have seen GHW Bush losing to Bill Clinton.  During the Gulf War his poll numbers were stratospheric.  Equally improbable was GW Bush’s failure to reckon with the American people’s dissatisfaction with his interminable wars in the Mid-East.  These were political blunders that led to Bill Clinton and Barack Obama respectively.  What they should teach us is that the president can’t have a tin political ear.  If you pull the levers of power and they cause pain to the people who vote, you’d better be able to convince them that it’s for something they want.  So, there’s the question, is Trump more like Reagan or more like a Bush.

I’m actually pretty certain that Donald Trump is closer to the former than the latter.  And that gives me hope.  I can see him striking deals with even some democrats that will satisfy voters and boost consumer confidence.  Of course, the flip-side of this would be, Trump moving so far to the left that he would be indistinguishable from Hillary Clinton.  This I find unlikely.  Based on the people he’s putting in place, I think he wants to make some big changes.  His picks for Education, Energy and the EPA are affronts to the liberals.  I can see how he intends to lighten the ship in those departments.  Also his pick for Defense is a signal that fun and games are over for the Army.

All in all, I find myself quite optimistic about 2017.  The best part of having a character like Donald Trump in the White House is that his famously thin skin should allow for some truly memorable Twitter rants against some of my least favorite people.  Can you imagine him disinviting the Kennedys and the Clintons from some state affair and broadcasting it on social media?  And my favorite Trump fantasy is the defunding of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.  Can you imagine the panic?  All those completely talentless television and radio personalities vying to remain on the only viable shows (Sesame Street and other kids shows) or trying to find spots at the already beleaguered operations of the other networks.  The beg-athons would have to become epic in scope and basically unending.  Probably for the right size donation you could have Ken Burns as your butler for a couple of years (and a tote bag).

Another way that Trump will probably excel past presidents is press conferences.  I’m trying to imagine how it won’t be entertaining and I just can’t.  I’m guessing that some of the reporters will challenge him from the start and I’m guessing he’ll ban them from the White House.  And if he doesn’t like the articles the White House beat reporters write I wouldn’t be surprised if he starts trolling the comments sections of the NYT and WP.  The best will be when he gives exclusive interviews to Ann Coulter and Breitbart’s Milo Yiannopoulis.  The rest of the media will rail against this favoritism and decry the softball questions (as if the Obama deference never happened).  It will be fantastic.

And finally, I look forward to the photo op where he sets the cornerstone for the wall.  That’s when I’ll know we’ve arrived.