Bourbon and Sense

...because with Bourbon comes good Sense

December Bourbon and this week's Talking Sense.


Jefferson

Jefferson Bourbon Whiskey

Aroma: Let me start by saying I am not a fan of this bourbon. The aroma is that of bitter oak and turpentine.

Taste: The taste closely mirrors the aroma of bitter oak and turpentine to my palate. Of course I am not the final authority concerning Jeffersons. I\'m sure there are plenty of folks out there who love this bourbon. UnfortunatelyI am not one of them. That being said, I have a nearly full bottle to finish. I may change my opinion by the time I get to the bottom of it.

Appearance: The appearance is a very pleasing golden amber color.

Finish: Jefferson\'s has a long finish. Imbibed neat I found that it leaves an acrid taste on the palate. However, a few drops of cool water gives a slightly smoother finish.

Story of: Distillery was founded in Louisville, Kentucky in 1997. They were continuing a family tradition that goes back to 1799. Thomas Jefferson is known for his curiosity and experimental spirit chosen to personify the brand.


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Talking Sense


Infrastructure passes

The infrastructure bill passed, albeit with less funding, but with 13 Republicans joining 215 Democrats in the House to approve the bill 228 to 206; some 6 Democrats voted with the Republicans to say no. The Senate had previously approved the bill on August 10 (I missed that somehow). The $1.2T funds the physical needs for roads, bridges, power grid, internet, and clean drinking water. A White House Fact Sheet provides excellent detail on the expenditures by category Visit Here


Mitch Landrieu, former Mayor of New Orleans, LA is in charge of the expenditures, making sure the money is properly used. Ironically, Louisianans are not known for their trustworthiness with public money, and looking at the city’s own roads, sewage and lately power grid, are unfortunate examples of how not to manage infrastructure. To be fair to the former Mayor, he didn’t have a whiff of scandal during his term.


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More Talking Sense


Meeting with China’s President Xi Jingping

President Biden met with China’s president in a 3.5-hour virtual conference telecall. The news about it seemed fairly positive despite the tensions that exist over Taiwan, trade, Hong Kong, Wuhan Lab leak(?), Human rights, climate, and visas for foreign journalists. The last two had the biggest progress as the two countries announced some agreements on climate and an announcement on loosening visa restrictions on both US and Chinese journalists. What I did not know was that Biden had left in place sanctions on China exports to us that former President Trump had initiated – I can’t find the original reason. Xi is not happy with sanctions.


However, despite the nice words spoken during the long meeting, the trouble with Taiwan remains. In plus, China has built islands in the South China Sea, placed military runways and facilities, threatening shipping (our Navy ships especially). If you haven’t read Admiral Stavridis and Elliott Ackerman’s 2034: A Novel of the Next World War, be prepared to be frightened of war with China.


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Point


Representative Paul Gosar is censured

Posting a cartoon about murdering a Congressional representative and then attacking the President of the United States with probably similar intent is horrible if not illegal. It doesn’t matter that the cartoon was anime and the faces of the people mentioned were placed over the cartoon characters so as to make the posting crude and unbelievable, it is wrong. Then to have a group of Republicans give moral support and defend the guilty Congressman, adds to the crime and is incredible. What’s going on with society? Is the only thing that counts is having power, no matter how obtained?


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Counterpoint


Ben Shapiro: Calls the Rittenhouse trial

In an OpEd piece in the paper on November 19, Ben Shapiro took the mainstream liberal media to task on their coverage of the Rittenhouse case. In The media’s myths saturate the left, he accuses the left of not providing the entire story. I have to say, it was an eye-opener and actually made me angry that we cannot get news without a slant left or right – in this case omitted facts. To quote Shapiro, Kyle Rittenhouse was a 17-year-old young man who went to Kenosha, Wisconsin in order to protect businesses and administer medical aid to those who needed it. He was chased down by Joseph Rosenbaum, a 36-year-old convicted child molester; he shot Rosenbaum when Rosenbaum grabbed for his gun. He was then chased down by Anthony Huber, 26, a man convicted of two felony counts of strangulation and suffering after pulling a knife on his brother and grandmother…., he goes on to describe the third shooting as self-defense and that everything is on tape. Although I can now understand the innocent verdict passed down this week, do we really need a 17-year-old self-annointed sheriff?


Mr. Shapiro continues in the second half of his article to paint several other events in the same manner: slanted reporting. The Christopher Steele dossier, Christine Blasey Ford’s accusations of now Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, Covington Catholic high schoolers supposed mocking of a Native American are all raised as examples of misreporting. I have to agree with Mr. Shapiro that this “crafting” of the news kills the facts and the general public’s desire for unbiased information. Stop bashing either side and “Just give us the facts, Ma’am”.


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Opinion


OMICRON or Oh My God!

Another variant. We’re told perhaps more transmissible than Delta but less virulent – mutations like the common cold. Of course, not sure of the efficacy of current vaccines and scientists need two weeks to know for sure. If you are like me, you’ve had it with cries of wolf.

Look at the data in the next panel. It shows daily confirmed cases of infection so testing, hospital check-ins; and daily deaths gathered from the United States. The sawtooth pattern is because of no reports during the weekends and the frequent spikes on the first day of each group is weekend reports coming in (I think I read that somewhere). In August and September, we peaked around 150,000 cases per day with 2500 deaths per day. Both rates drop through what should be the start of football season and crowded, unmasked but fully vaccinated, football crowds. Both rates have turned back up around Thanksgiving but remains below the fall numbers. Now we seem to be at 100,000 cases per day and 1800 deaths. Could be OMICRON but more likely remains mostly Delta. I didn’t post the vaccinations graph because the data is lagging by a month.

What should we conclude? It will be another two weeks before we understand the OMICRON variant and the efficacy of the vaccines.


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