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Trailrider1951's Journal - Archives
Posted by Trailrider1951 in General Discussion
Thu Oct 27th 2011, 08:08 PM
with the student loan scam:

We have been scammed. Both the banks and our so-called representatives in Washington, DC, are complicit.

This is my second favorite Pet Rant, next to the FRICKEN health insurance industrial complex. That is all.
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Posted by Trailrider1951 in General Discussion
Thu Oct 27th 2011, 10:55 AM
amortization spreadsheet that I put together for my student loans:

I consolidated my loans in 2001:

Date Rec'd Payment Type Payment Amt Appl to Princ Appl to Int Fees Princip Bal
3/2/2001 Mail $143.92 $0.00 $143.92 $0.00 $25,283.64

Here is what my latest payment information looks like:

Date Rec'd Payment Type Payment Amt Appl to Princ Appl to Int Fees Princip Bal
10/21/2011 Electronic Debit $236.69 $102.35 $134.34 $0.00 $20,369.36

And here are my totals to date, including my most recent payment:

Date Rec'd Payment Type Payment Amt Appl to Princ Appl to Int Fees Princip Bal
Totals: $19,296.91 $5,041.29 $14,255.62 $0.00 $20,369.36

So, you can see that after paying on the loans for about 10 years (this time frame includes about 10 months unemployment when I could not pay on the loan and the interest was added to the principle, around $4000+ in "capitalized interest"), I have paid nearly $20,000 on a loan of $25,283.64 and reduced it by only $5,000. The going interest rate when I consolidated was 8.25%, but I got a 0.25% reduction by signing up for electronic debit from my checking account. Oh, did I not mention that this loan CANNOT be refinanced for a lower interest rate. It CANNOT be discharged in bankruptcy. I am stuck with it. Fortunately, I am currently employed and current with my payments, but that could change in a heartbeat. Those poor students out there that cannot find jobs that will pay a living wage so that they can PAY those FRICKEN loans can only watch that principle grow and grow and grow.... Please try to have some compassion for them.
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Posted by Trailrider1951 in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Wed Sep 08th 2010, 12:27 PM
so sang Stevie Ray. Today it came true. About 9 am I witnessed a rescue of two people from a house along the San Gabriel River, near the intersections of Routes 29 and 95, east of Georgetown and north of Taylor, TX. Starflight and Williamson County officials have rescued many people here today.

I'm going to try to post some photos:

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Posted by Trailrider1951 in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Wed Nov 11th 2009, 11:48 AM
DU has been a place for all of us to help each other, and now I would like to turn to you for some help, if I can. I am an animal lover with a situation that has become a nightmare. Here is the story:

In June, I invited my sister to move in with me, with her living in the upstairs of my house and sharing the downstairs area with me. She had lost her upteenth job and was being evicted for non-payment of rent. She has been drifting around ever since she lost everything in the Katrina disaster. She has emotional problems (stemming from severe physical and emotional abuse at the hands of our parents), and has a hard time working for anyone but herself. And she has a hard time getting along with people
(including me), because she takes everything personally and reacts with anger and verbal abuse to anything she perceives as criticism.

If all this were not bad enough, she has turned into an animal hoarder. Google those words and you will get an eyeful. Before she moved in, I knew that she had "several" cats. Also before she moved in, she persuaded me to take in a stray mama cat with four kittens that she had taken in. She said she had no money to take care of them. I also had three of my own, so now I had eight. I got the three males and one of the females neutered, and would neuter the females when I had the money to do so. So far, so good. Then she moves in with her twenty or so cats, promising me that she would keep any un-neutered males confined to one of the rooms upstairs. Apparently one of the males got loose and bred four or five of the un-neutered females. Now we have about fifty cats and kittens. I have no idea how many there actually are. And my sister insists upon taking in any strays she finds, recently adding another mama cat with five kitties.

My sister presently does not have a job and is going to school full-time. She does give me some money when she gets her financial aid, but it is not nearly enough to cover the costs of cat food, litter and her use of the utilities. Also, she cleans the upstairs where she lives (960 sq. ft.), but helps little with the downstairs (1700 sq. ft.) aside from helping with the dishes once a week. So I am expected to clean all the cat boxes (4) downstairs, as well as buy all the cat food and litter.

I am at the end of my patience! My house smells like a cat toilet as some of the cats go potty anywhere they like on the floor, and they rip the curtains from the walls and tear up my furniture. The kitchen is unsanitary where the cats walk around on the counters and crawl inside the cabinets where we keep food and dishes. I am tired of spending hours every day cleaning after all those cats. I talked to my sister, and while she has agreed to give away the kittens, she insists upon keeping her adult cats
(maybe twenty?). I would like to keep my three. That is still too many! Also, she will not let me give them to a shelter that kills animals. The only no-kill shelter in our area wants a $95 donation to give up a litter of kittens, and an additional $95 for any adult cat. I cannot afford this! I am to the point that I am considering sneaking two or three of the cats out on Saturday morning and giving them to our county's animal shelter, who says that they only euthanize animals that are sick or un-adoptable, not healthy kittens. My sister, of course, refuses to even consider giving a kitten to them. Or I could just lie about where those kitties are going, but I don't want to be a liar.

Please, does anyone have any suggestions? I cannot take this anymore! And I cannot throw my sister out on the street. She need psychological help, but has not health insurance and no money. And she is trying to get her life back together.
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Posted by Trailrider1951 in Cooking & Baking Group
Mon Jan 19th 2009, 08:35 AM
It's from a recipe on the Mother Earth News website:

The bread turns out really crusty on the outside and moist and chewy on the inside, just like I like it! The recipe is easy enough, 3 cups warm water, 1 1/2 Tbs salt, 1 1/2 Tbs yeast (I used 2 packets) and 6 1/2 cups flour (I used 4 cups unbleached white and 2 1/2 cups whole wheat). The instructions are rather detailed, so I included the link above. I changed it somewhat, using a non-stick cookie sheet sprinkled with sesame seeds for resting and baking the loaves. But I still put the pan beneath the cookie sheet, and added the water when I put the loaves in the oven. What a difference this made in the crust! Also, I mixed the dough on Saturday, and left it in the refrigerator overnight in a covered bowl (not airtite). How convenient! I still have enough dough to make another loaf sometime later this week. I'll report back on how that goes. Enjoy!
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Posted by Trailrider1951 in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Tue Oct 28th 2008, 06:36 AM
I cast my vote last night.

I cast my vote in memory of a president,
Who taught us not to fear.
Who died before I was born.

I cast my vote in memory of my murdered president,
Whose vision and leadership
Took us to the moon.

I cast my vote in memory of a leader,
Who showed us that Truth and Justice
Were inevitable,
The power of his Dream.

I cast my vote for one who fought corruption
Who fought for fairness,
Who also died too soon.

I cast my vote for THAT ONE
Whose vision pours upon us
The audacity of Hope.
I, too, have a Dream.
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Posted by Trailrider1951 in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Sun Mar 23rd 2008, 07:15 AM
backed by intrinsic value. And, no, I'm not a Ron Paul worshiper. Just the facts, ma'am, a cross-post from another thread:

When I was a little girl, these two were equals:


When Stupid was selected, these two were equal:


Today these are approximately equal:


Any questions?

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Posted by Trailrider1951 in Vegetarian, Vegan and Animal Rights Group
Mon Feb 04th 2008, 08:51 AM
Mix together in a large bowl:

1 can artichokes, drained and chopped
1/2 cup black olives, drained and chopped
1 small can tomatoes, drained and chopped (or fresh)
1 or 2 tablespoons minced garlic
2 tablespoons minced onion
2 heaping tablespoons basil pesto in olive oil
Parmesean, feta, and mozarella cheese, a little or a lot

The recipe is vegan if you leave out the dairy cheese and substitute soy cheese.

Spoon mixture into a half of a whole wheat pita bread and bake at 400 for 10 or 15 minutes. Enjoy with a tossed salad and a glass of red wine.

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Posted by Trailrider1951 in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Sat Jan 19th 2008, 08:01 AM
As if the regular credit bureaus aren't enough! Do you know that they sell your information to the collection agencies? Do you know that they collude with the banks and credit providers to keep your score LOW so that the credit providers can charge you MORE interest? Explore Experian's website sometime to see how they "help" to make money for their "customers", which, by the way, bubba, AIN'T YOU, the consumer. So, this private information will be used in the same way, to make your score low so you can pay MORE, if the insurance companies take you to begin with, and the hospitals decide to treat you. GOD, WE OUGHT TO BE OUT IN THE STREETS OVER THIS!!! I got my pitchfork ready, how about you?
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Posted by Trailrider1951 in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Sat Jan 19th 2008, 07:46 AM
I chose poorly. I was a young woman with self-esteem issues who grew up in an abusive family. Of course, I chose someone who would also abuse and manipulate me. It took six years to get my head screwed on straight, and to declare my independence from all the excremente del toro that people can do to one another. I divorced the SOB in August of 1977 and never looked back. Don't get me wrong, I don't hate men, in fact I like most of them.....I just do not want to be OWNED by anyone ever again.
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Posted by Trailrider1951 in Pets Group
Mon Dec 31st 2007, 01:11 PM
He was so sick, and there was nothing we could do to make him better. He just would not eat anything at all, and his tumors were so big, they were collapsing his windpipe. He was so weak that he could barely stand at the water dish and take a drink. I finally saw that the only thing that I or our vet could offer him was a quick and easy death. I took him in, and spent some time in a private room with him, and then the vet gave him an injection to make him sleep. I think it was too much, because after he laid down and relaxed, he gave a short gasp, and I don't think he took a breath after that. Then the vet injected the lethal solution into his vein and checked for a heartbeat. There was none. I took him home and buried him under the big pecan tree. RIP Puddycat. 2/1993 - 12/2007.
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Posted by Trailrider1951 in Pets Group
Sun Dec 09th 2007, 09:44 AM
The poor guy, who is 14 years old, stopped eating three days ago. I took him to the vet yesterday where they took his temperature (100.6),found swelling in the thyroid area in his neck, and drew a blood sample for kidney function and thyroid function. The kidney function results were available in about half an hour, and they came back fine. The thyroid function results won't be available until sometime Monday. Does anyone have any suggestions as to how to get some nutrition into him? He's drinking water and using his cat box OK, but I'm worried because this is the fourth day with no food. I've tried tempting him with cooked chicken livers, canned sardines, which he normally loves, but he won't eat. Any suggestions?
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Posted by Trailrider1951 in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Wed Dec 05th 2007, 08:30 AM
Yeppers, they sure do!! Just look at my record:

I started my first real job in my career after college in Feb, 1981. My total payment per month for health insurance was about $85. My company matched that amount for a total of $170 per month for the 42 months I stayed with that company. Grand total paid in: $6,800.00

From 7/84 to 5/86, I was in graduate school. No health insurance.

From 6/86 to 8/96 (122 months), I was employed at a second company. I paid about $100 per month for my health insurance and my company paid about $150 per month for me. Total: $250 per month. $250 * 122 months = a grand total of $30,000 paid in during this time.

From 8/96 to 8/05 (108 months), I was employed at a third company. I paid about $150 per month and my company contributed about $250 per month for a total of $400 per month for my health insurance. $400 * 108 months = $43,200 paid in. WOW!

I was unemployed or under-employed from 8/05 until 3/06. No health insurance.

From 3/06 until today, I have been employed by a great small company. They pay ALL the premiums for their employee's health insurance, about $500 per month for each one(family coverage is paid by each employee). $500 per month * 21 months = $10,500.

If you add it all up, it comes to $90,500 for my health insurance over the last 26 years.

So, you ask, how much did you cost them? Well, I've never had an accident, never given birth during this time, and my most serious illness was a bout with mononucleosis. No time in the hospital at all. And I've actually averaged about 1 doctor visit per year. At an average of $60 per visit, 26 * $60 = $1560.

And that is why they just love, love, LOVE me! I am the person that they "cherry pick". I am the face of their profits. And I am the reason they will fight single-payer health care to the DEATH!!!

And do you want to know what I think about all this? I think that my money was WASTED!!!! If I and my companies had paid that money into a government-protected health fund (a la Soc. Sec.), it would have gone to help those of you who had no such resources. It would have paid for your diabetic child's insulin instead of some ass-kissing insurance co. branch manager's vacation home in Vail. It would have paid for your cancer therapy instead of some bloated CEO's second yacht. It would have paid for your Grannie's dental care when she needed dentures, instead of a new 40 story insurance building with marble tile in the executive washrooms.

I could go on and on, but you get my point.

ARE YOU LISTENING, DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATES???? Dennis Kuchinich got the point. How about the rest of you?
If you haven't gotten the point yet, let me spell it out to you:


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Posted by Trailrider1951 in Vegetarian, Vegan and Animal Rights Group
Fri Oct 26th 2007, 07:48 AM
in the crockpot!
Use a large crockpot, spray with olive oil spray and add:
1 med to large eggplant, peeled and cut into chunks
1 or 2 zuchinis, cut into chunks
about 1/2 to 1 cup thickly sliced carrots
1 green bell pepper, cut into chunks
1 med diced onion
1 tbls minced garlic
2 ribs celery, thickly sliced
freshly ground black pepper
fresh or dried basil
fresh or dried savory
allspice, a dash or two
fresh or 1 large can tomatoes, diced
1 jar your favorite spagetti sauce

Add to crockpot in order given and cook on low overnight and all the next day, stirring occasionally. Serve with a small side of whole wheat pasta and little crumbled non-fat feta cheese on top.
Feeds an army!
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Posted by Trailrider1951 in Vegetarian, Vegan and Animal Rights Group
Tue Mar 01st 2005, 02:07 PM
1 pkg. extra firm tofu
1 cup baby carrots, cut into 1/3s
1/4 cup chopped onion
2 sweet green, red, or yellow peppers
1 or 2 jalapenos (optional)
1 can juice-packed pineapple chunks, drained
corn starch
teriyaki sauce (I like Kikkoman's)
canola or other high-temp oil
prepared brown rice, about 2 or 3 cups

Freeze tofu in its package for a week or more. This concentrates it and changes the texture to a sponge-like consistency. Thaw completely and drain, squeezing out all liquid. Cut into 1/2 inch cubes. In a medium bowl, combine corn starch and teriyaki sauce to make a thick liquid about the consistency of heavy cream. Soak tofu cubes a handful at a time until they absorb the teriyaki mixture. Heat about 1/2 cup canola oil in wok until very hot. Remove tofu from marinade with a slotted spoon and put in the hot oil, stir-frying until brown, about 2 minutes. Remove and drain on paper towels. Continue until all tofu has been cooked. Drain most of oil from wok, and add onion and carrots, and stir fry about 2 minutes until crisp-tender. Add peppers, stir and fry for another 2 minutes. Add pineapple and cooked tofu. Add a few shakes of teriyaki sauce and stir and fry until heated through. Serve over hot cooked rice. Yummmmm!
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