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Posts Made By: Greg Shaffer

January 31, 2012 08:18 PM Forum: Politics

Repeat as neccesary

Posted By Greg Shaffer

This is humor, not a troll or a debate....I burned my nose with coke when I hit the punch line so I deemed this one unusually worthy of repeating smile

Standard Hospital pricing procedure

In the hospital the relatives gathered in the waiting room, where a family member lay gravely ill. Finally, the doctor came in looking tired and somber.

'I'm afraid I'm the bearer of bad news,' he said as he surveyed the worried faces. 'The only hope left for your loved one at this time is a brain transplant. It's an experimental procedure, very risky, but it is the only hope. Insurance will cover the procedure, but you will have to pay for the BRAIN.'

The family members sat silent as they absorbed the news. After a time, someone asked, 'How much will a brain cost?'

The doctor quickly responded, '$5,000 for a Democrat's brain; $200 for a Republican's brain.'
The moment turned awkward. Some of the Democrats actually had to 'try' to not smile, avoiding eye contact with the Republicans. A man unable to control his curiosity, finally blurted out the question everyone wanted to ask, 'Why is the Democrats brain so much more than a Republicans brain?'

The doctor smiled at the childish innocence and explained to the entire group, 'It's just standard pricing procedure. We have to price the Republicans' brains a lot lower because they're used."

March 15, 2012 07:50 PM Forum: Reflectors

Hmmm unexpected.....

Posted By Greg Shaffer

Until a couple weeks ago the largest scope in my arsenal was a 12.5" DOB.....I used it a fair bit but really spent more time with my refractors, newts and C11.

Since I picked up a new to me 20" Obsession I find myself not even bothering with the rest....Having looked thru a half dozen or so larger DOBs I knew I would enjoy the scope but it is more than that.....all the objects that I was used to have now taken on a whole new perspective....I am beginning to think I am well on my way to becoming an apature junkie lol

This is not good.....dont need a 2nd mortgage smile

March 22, 2012 05:31 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

Craigslist find of my entire time in Astronomy

Posted By Greg Shaffer

I have been keeping an eye out for a tracking platform for a while and a friend pointed me to an ad on CL which was about 45 min from me. Called the guy and went to pick it up today. It was just a cheap one DOB-Tracker III I believe for $100....New they were $365 delivered so obviously on the low end....but what the heck for $100 should do fine for my 12.5"

Long story short, nice guy had several scopes and mounts....In our conversation about what we like etc I mentioned I was into imaging. He said he had a scope he bought with the intention of imaging one day but didnt feel he would ever get around to it. He said if he could find someone who would use it he would let it go cheap. I asked him which one....he pointed to a C11 with a JMI focuser and Starbright XLT coatings with the factory carbon fiber tube. It had a few minor scuffs on it but looked pretty good. MDS rail on top and the orange losmandy style dovetail. The only obvious issue was the primary focus knob was missing. He said the guy he bought it from used it solely for imaging. Looked like it had been used with a fastar system since there were a couple added index marks for the corrector plate.

I already had a C11 but I asked him how much he wanted to get out of it....he said $200.00!!

I asked him again how much to be sure....I heard $200 again....I said are you sure? He confirmed sooooooo......I took the cover off and the corrector plate and mirror looked pristine....Bought it on the spot. Sadly the sky is totally hosed so I didnt get to try it yet but $200.....damn!! smile I am going to say I likely just got the best deal of my astro career....And I have the orginal focus knob that was on mine which I had replaced with the 2 speed feathertouch. I have from time to time searched on CL, I think I will do more of that smile

March 23, 2012 06:29 PM Forum: AstroMart FAQ

Re: How can I deal with a fraud on astromart?

Posted By Greg Shaffer

It appears he has deleted the ad also.....I would say you need to contact Herb directly. Send him an email to [email protected]. I feel certain at the least he can give you some sound advice on how you should proceed.

I know its too little too late but I would NEVER and have never bought anything of real value (meaning over 100.00) from someone who has little or no feedback unless it was a meet and greet in person. Very sorry to hear of your problem and sincerely hope you can recoop......

March 24, 2012 04:02 PM Forum: AstroMart FAQ

Intresting Auction picture.....

Posted By Greg Shaffer

A friend pointed this out and I thought it so funny I just had to share....There is a current auction for a TAK Binoscope going on.....

Check out the 7th picture from the left in the top row....look in the background of the pic smile

October 6, 2012 09:31 PM Forum: Politics

Chicago Politics for sure

Posted By Greg Shaffer

There is also a Foxnews video here

October 18, 2012 05:41 PM Forum: Politics

Wish list for the next debate......

Posted By Greg Shaffer

A wish list for the next debate......

I wish when Obama and company assault the arithmetic of the Romney-Ryan tax cuts and observe that closing the loopholes won't cover the loss, Romney would respond as follows:

"Mr. President, you have 23,000,000 people out of work, drawing unemployment and food stamps and paying no taxes. If they, or a good portion of them were employed, we'd cut spending on their unemployment and food stamps, and reap the benefits of the taxes. You need to include that in your math."

I wish when Obama talked about creating jobs, Romney would respond:

"Mr. President, I came from a business background, I understand how to put people to work. Have you ever hired someone, anyone, and paid them out of your pocket?"

I wish when Obama assails Romney's investments and retirement fund, Romney would say:

"Mr. President, my retirement comes from the private sector and I earned it there. It places no burden on the public. Do you have any retirement that's not public funded? I'll voluntarily give back all my public provided benefits if you'll do the same."

When President Obama says he would like to pursue an assault weapons ban to curb gun violence.....

Romney should respond that a good place to start would be to ban the ATF/Justice Department from supplying assault weapons to Mexican drug gangs that are then used to kill U.S. border agents.

Obviously this last one is just to make a point since Ryan and Biden are done......

I wish when the moderator says, "Mr. Ryan, your turn", Paul Ryan would respond with:

"Let Joe have my time, he's even better at making himself look like a buffoon than I could ever be".

Y'all have any "I wishes"??? smile

October 26, 2012 10:44 PM Forum: Politics

The root of the problem......

Posted By Greg Shaffer

This guy from England gets right to the root of the largest social, political issue in the world today and does it with a bit of flair that puts me in mind of a Monty Python skit except it resonates with truth.....

November 7, 2012 02:36 PM Forum: Politics


Posted By Greg Shaffer

Wouldnt it be intresting if after winning the election Obama finds himself impeached for Libya lol

November 8, 2012 01:43 PM Forum: Politics

Game, set, match

Posted By Greg Shaffer

It’s really hard to ignore what happened yesterday. Fact is it doesn’t matter. Not one bit. And I’ll show you mathematically:

1) When the US federal government spends money, expenses are officially categorized in three different ways. Discretionary spending includes nearly everything we think of related to government– the US military, Air Force One, the Department of Homeland Security, TSA agents who sexually assault passengers, etc. Mandatory spending includes entitlements like Medicare, Social Security, VA benefits, etc. which are REQUIRED by law to be paid. The final category is interest on the debt. It is non-negotiable. Mandatory spending and debt interest go out the door automatically. It’s like having your mortgage payment auto-drafted from your bank account. Congress doesn’t even see the money, it’s automatically deducted.

2) With the rise of baby boomer entitlements and steady increase in overall debt levels, mandatory spending and interest payments have exploded in recent years. In fact, the Congressional Budget Office predicted in 2010 that the US government’s TOTAL revenue would be exceeded by mandatory spending and interest expense within 15-years. That was a scary thought. Except it happened the very next year.

3) In Fiscal Year 2011, the federal government collected $2.303 trillion in tax revenue. Interest on the debt that year totaled $454.4 billion, and mandatory spending totaled $2,025 billion. In sum, mandatory spending plus debt interest totaled $2.479 trillion… exceeding total revenue by $176.4 billion. For Fiscal Year 2012 which just ended 37 days ago, that shortfall increased 43% to $251.8 billion. In other words, the Congress could cut the entirety of the Federal Government’s discretionary budget– no more military, SEC, FBI, EPA, TSA, DHS, IRS, etc.– and they would still be in the hole by a quarter of a trillion dollars.

4) Raising taxes won’t help. Since the end of World War II, tax receipts in the US have averaged 17.7% of GDP in a very tight range. The low has been 14.4% of GDP, and the high has been 20.6% of GDP.
However, during that period, tax rates have been all over the board. Individual rates have ranged from 10% to 91%. Corporate rates from 15% to 53%. Gift taxes, estate taxes, etc. have all varied. And yet, total tax revenue has stayed nearly constant at 17.7% of GDP. The conclusion is: It doesn’t matter how much Congress increases tax rates, they won’t collect any more money.

5) GDP growth prospects are tepid at best. Facing so many headwinds like quickening inflation, an enormous debt load, and debilitating regulatory burdens, the US economy is barely keeping pace with population growth.

6) The only thing registering any real growth in the US is the National Debt. It took over 200 years for the US government to accumulate its first trillion dollars in debt. It took just 286 days to accumulate the most recent trillion (from $15 trillion to $16 trillion). Last month alone [October 2012], the first full month of Fiscal Year 2013, the US government accumulated nearly $200 billion in new debt– 20% of the way to a fresh trillion in just 31 days.

7) Not to mention, the numbers will only continue to get worse. 10,000 people each day begin receiving mandatory entitlements. Fewer people remain behind to pay into the system. The debt keeps rising, and interest payments will continue rising.

8) Curiously, a series of polls taken by ABC News/Washington Post and NBC News/Wall Street Journal show that while 80% of Americans are concerned about the debt, roughly the same amount (78%) oppose cutbacks to mandatory entitlements like Medicare.

9) Bottom line, the US government is legally bound to spend more money on mandatory entitlements and interest than it can raise in tax revenue. It won’t make a difference how high they raise taxes, or even if they cut everything else that remains in government as we know it. Understand that this is not a political problem, it’s a mathematical one. Facts are facts, no matter how uncomfortable they may be. Yesterdays election is merely a choice of who is going to captain the sinking Titanic.