mardi 15 avril 2014

Blogging break.
«Louis» is taking a break from blogging
to deal with some personal issues.

lundi 14 avril 2014

Cream of Tomato Soup


This tomato processing plant owned by the Campbell Soup Company is located on the north east side of Dixon, California, near I-80. It is one of two tomato processing plants in California owned by the famous soup company. The second plant is in the San Joaquin Valley city of Stockton. Tomatoes grown on local farms are brought to this plant and processed to become tomato concentrate. From this plant (and the Stockton plant), the concentrate is shipped to Campbell's plants in North Carolina, Ohio and Texas where it becomes Cream of Tomato Soup, V-8 Juice and other Campbell's products.



Until July of 2013, Campbell's operated a plant in Sacramento that took the concentrate made at Dixon and Stockton and made soup, sauces and beverages. But the increasingly anti-business political climate of California, the fact that California is a closed-shop state for the unions, high taxes and increasing meddling by the Environmental Protection Agency convinced Campbell's to close the Sacramento plant. Seven hundred jobs were lost. Campbell's has shuttered operations in another "blue" state, New Jersey, where the company was founded. The Camden, New Jersey soup plant and a spice plant in South Plainfield, New Jersey were also shuttered.

At the same time that Campbell's closed the Sacramento plant, Comcast closed three call centers in California. One thousand jobs were lost in the Comcast closures. Comcast's decision to close its call centers in California is rich in irony. As the parent of NBC and the notorious MSNBC, Comcast's media operations act as the press office for the Democrat National Committee. Thus Comcast furthers the political agenda of the party that has created the environment so harmful to business in "blue" states such as California and New Jersey. To borrow a line from a favored song of the "New Left" of the 1960s, "when will they ever learn?"

The strangling hand of government is killing the goose that laid California's golden egg: agriculture.
We think of California as being the "high tech" state and we often associate it with the aircraft industry as well. But the business of California is agriculture. California alone produces 40% of the produce in the United States.

The high cost of doing business in California has driven the auto industry out, the sole exception being newcomer Tesla - which is producing its cars in a plant in Fremont, formerly jointly owned between General Motors and Toyota. Only a fragment of the aviation industry remains, mostly research and development operations. Aircraft are no longer built in California by any aviation company.

Since the arrival of the Obama regime in Washington and the return of "Governor Moonbeam", Jerry Brown, to Sacramento, the policies of the Democrat party have wreaked havoc with business and employment in California. The upshot of this is that Austin, Texas has become home to much of the business that once was done in "Silicon Valley". Some 3,000 people a week are moving from California to states with a friendly business climate, lower taxes, and a lower cost of living, principally Texas.

The Brown regime in Sacramento has joined with the Environmental Protection Agency in starving California farmers of water from the San Joaquin Delta to "protect" a small fish, a smelt. The EPA is fining farmers for air pollution for stirring up dust while plowing (!). What do they want the farmers to do, go back to Stone Age agricultural methods? Apparently so. The EPA is increasingly out of control and Jerry Brown has sold out to the radical "environmentalists" of the lunatic left. Farmers, many whose families go back to the pioneer days of the 19th century, are closing their farms by the scores. Where, then, shall we get our produce? We need to remember these things on election day...

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Near the Campbell's plant in Dixon are two trucking companies who bring the crops from the field to the processing plants, whether it be tomatoes to Campbell's or almonds or walnuts (also grown on the farms around Dixon) to nearby nut processing facilities. There are millions of dollars worth of trucks and trailers that sit idle most of the year, but come harvest time, these rigs will run around the clock.


Tractors (above) and trailers (below) await the next harvest near the Campbell's plant in Dixon.

 
Lenten Devotion

LOOKING AWAY?
Holy Monday, April 14, 2014
Read Psalm 9.
TEXT: For He has not despised or abhorred the affliction of the afflicted, and He has not hidden His face from him, but has heard, when he cried to Him (Psalm 22:24).


Jesus, our conquering King, goes on to give all glory and credit to His Father for the great deliverance He won on the cross. Jesus was the afflicted One, rejected by His people, His priests, the Roman governor and soldiers. Yet despite the shame and humility, the blood and gore, the pain and agony, the Father did not despise Him as the Jewish leaders taunted Him. The Father did not abhor, or utterly detest Jesus’ terrible afflictions. The Father did not forsake Jesus forever, but heard His bitter cry, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” The Father accepted His sacrifice, delivered Him from hell, and gently brought His Son’s soul to paradise, even as loving hands took His body down from the cross, wrapped it for burial, and gently laid it in the unused tomb.

We too are often afflicted in life. We wonder how God responds to seeing us in pain, fear, doubt, agony. Does He despise us as weak and insignificant? Does He abhor us, wanting nothing to do with creatures so helpless and unclean? Does He hide His face and stop His ears from our pain and suffering?

No, our gracious Father is always with us to look upon us in need, to hear our groans and pleas, and to deliver us from all troubles, from all enemies, and from death and hell. It was that great love which moved Him to send His only begotten Son as our victorious Savior. That is why we fear Him, praise Him, glorify Him, and stand in awe of Him.

THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, through Your Son Jesus Christ, You always watch us, hear our prayers, and deliver us from all trials. Receive our thanks and praise for Jesus’ sake. Amen. 

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samedi 12 avril 2014

Série de ponts de dimanche


A "hat trick" (3 in 1) of bridges today!

We have (on the left) the northbound lanes of I-680 crossing Suisun Bay in Benicia, California with a railroad bridge in the middle and the southbound lanes of I-680 on the bridge at the right. 

Benicia was California's first capital city. Sacramento became the capital city in 1854. Under Spanish rule, the capital had been in Monterey. In the bid to become a state, the California legislature also met in San José and Vallejo, but the first capitol building was built in Benicia.


Click to enlarge






In the background we see Mount Diablo.

Show off your bridge here!


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inSPIREd Sunday

See the other inSPIREd Sunday participants HERE

Memorial Church
Stanford University
Palo Alto, California


Stanford Memorial Church is located at the center of the Stanford University campus. Jane Stanford had the church built as a memorial to her husband Leland. In turn, the Stanfords had built the university as a memorial to their son, Leland, Jr. Designed by architect Charles A. Coolidge, a protégé of Henry Hobson Richardson, the church has been called "the University's architectural crown jewel".



Designs for the church were submitted to Jane Stanford and the university trustees in 1898, and it was dedicated in 1903. The building is Romanesque in form and Byzantine in its details, inspired by churches in the region of Venice and, especially, Ravenna. Its stained glass windows and extensive mosaics are based on religious paintings the Stanfords admired in Europe. The church has four pipe organs, which allow musicians to produce many styles of organ music. Stanford Memorial Church has withstood two major earthquakes, in 1906 and 1989, and was extensively renovated after each.


Adam and Eve

Stanford Memorial Church was the earliest and has been "among the most prominent" non-denominational churches on the West Coast of the United States.





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The Psalm for Palm Sunday:
Psalm 24
Three year common lectionary, Series A



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Lenten Devotion

PRAISE OUR CONQUERING KING
Palm Sunday, April 13, 2014 Read Matthew 21:1-11
.

TEXT: You who fear the Lord, praise Him! All you offspring of Jacob, glorify Him, and stand in awe of Him, all you offspring of Israel! (Psalm 22:23).

On this first day of Holy Week we recall the multitude of Jews welcoming Jesus into Jerusalem. This week it is fitting to consider Jesus Christ the mighty Victor, coming to battle and soundly defeat sin, Satan, death and hell through His horrific suffering described so vividly in the first part of Psalm 22. Today’s verse describes four things we are to do as we gather to receive our conquering King: “fear the Lord,” “praise Him,” “glorify Him,” and “stand in awe of Him.”

“Fear God.” Through Jesus’ sufferings on the cross, we learn the severity of God’s wrath at our sins. True fear of God includes taking that wrath seriously and confessing that we rightly deserve to fall under His wrath.

“Praise Him.” We praise our Lord Jesus for His willingness to go to the cross, to drink the full cup of God’s wrath in our place, and to win our salvation by His suffering and death.
“Glorify Him.” We glorify Him by telling others what He has done, and by letting Him transform our thinking, our attitudes, and our goals for this life, so we walk in His holy ways.

“Stand in Awe of Him.” Jesus deserves our awe and wonder because He took on our enemies all by Himself, and won complete forgiveness and salvation for each of us.
In the context of this part of Psalm 22, Jesus takes all our praise and directs it to His Father, who delivered Him from the power of Satan on the cross, and from the grip of the tomb on Easter morning.

THE PRAYER: Lord Jesus Christ, thank You for coming as our great Victor to conquer sin and death for us and to open wide our heavenly home. Amen.

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Weekend Reflections

Lights from the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge
reflected in the Bay.


See all the other contributors to James' 
Weekend Reflections
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Lenten Devotion


TIME TO PROCLAIM
Saturday, April 12, 2014 Read Psalm 40.

TEXT: I will tell of Your Name to my brothers; in the midst of the congregation I will praise You (Psalm 22:22).


In the moment before His death Jesus loudly proclaimed “It is finished,” showing He had completed His Father’s plan to save all people. We return to the final section of Psalm 22 where Jesus predicts His resurrection, and what will come after.
After being delivered from death and hell by His faithful Father, Jesus appeared to His brothers the apostles, and revealed God’s gracious plan of salvation. Through their words in the New Testament He continues to declare the Lord’s Name to all believers. He gathers us together into a great worshiping assembly. And there in the midst of that congregation Jesus praises the Father who was the Source of God’s plan of salvation.

Three times each year the whole nation of Israel gathered together in Jerusalem to worship God, recall His promises, and call upon Him for help in the future. The first was the great Feast of Passover, when Israel recalled God’s deliverance from slavery in Egypt. This was the very feast in which God’s Passover Lamb, Jesus Christ, carried the sins of the world and delivered His people from slavery to sin, death and hell.

The second great feast followed 50 days after Easter. At Pentecost the nation gathered again to thank God for the harvest. At this feast Christ declared His great salvation through His apostles in Jerusalem and the Christian church was born. Each time we gather to worship in local congregations Jesus is there with us, proclaiming His Father’s great love in sending His Son. On the Last Day He will gather His scattered believers from around the world into His eternal kingdom.

THE PRAYER: Lord Jesus Christ, thank You for declaring the Father’s love to us. Give us faith to remain in that love forever. Amen. 
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• Eric Allie:

vendredi 11 avril 2014

Le vendredi «Sky Watch»

Sky Watch Friday


From Benicia, looking across Suisun Bay, we see one of California's "Green" boondoggles: a wind farm. Expensive to build, notoriously inefficient, and they kill thousands of birds annually.
What's not to like about them?


See all the Sky Watch Friday entries HERE.
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Lenten Devotion

MIRACULOUS SIGNS

Friday, April 11, 2014
Read Matthew 27:51-53

TEXT: And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split. The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised (Matthew 27:51-52).

During the early hours of Jesus’ crucifixion, it was easy for the Jewish people streaming into town to conclude He had been a fraud and a fake. To all appearances His claim to be God’s Son had finally caught up with Him because God had cursed Him and permitted that horrible death. They interpreted all the evidence they had seen as proof of Jesus’ guilt.

Then came the supernatural miracles that accompanied His crucifixion and death. First, was the three hours of ominous, supernatural darkness. Then at Jesus’ death a great earthquake struck the city, splitting the rocks apart. The Jewish religious leaders got a sign of their own—the curtain separating the Holy Place from the Most Holy Place in the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. Finally, the earthquake broke tombs open and many dead saints came to life, appearing in the city to others after Jesus’ resurrection.

After seeing all these events the centurion and his soldiers said, “Truly this was the Son of God!” Luke notes the reaction of the crowds that stood there witnessing these things, “And all the crowds that had assembled for this spectacle, when they saw what had taken place, returned home beating their breasts” (Luke 23:48). Beating one’s breast was a demonstration of profound grief, fear and regret.

These miracles didn’t convince everyone, but they were powerful signs that God’s Son was sacrificing Himself for our sins. A miracle even more clear was coming in three short days.

THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, thank You for the signs that accompanied Your Son’s suffering and death and for His resurrection, which proved You accepted His sacrifice. Give us confidence in Your forgiveness. For Jesus’ sake. Amen. 

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jeudi 10 avril 2014

Farmed out...

Although the restaurant has been closed for almost 30 years - in fact, the building is gone,
the Milk Farm Restaurant sign still hails drivers passing by on Interstate 80 at Dixon.



«Louis la Vache» has long wondered what the story of the Milk Farm is. Now he knows, courtesy of this article in Wikipedia:
Milk Farm Restaurant was a restaurant in Dixon, California off I-80, that played a big part in Dixon's dairy economy during World War II. It was considered to be the city's landmark.

Karl A. Hess had the idea to build the Milk Farm restaurant in 1919, and it was finally built in Dixon in 1928. During World War II, Mr. Hess offered various deals, such as an all-you-can-drink milk contest for only 10 cents, pony rides for children, and reasonably priced chicken dinners. He quickly attracted many customers, both local and travelers. It was eventually featured in a 1940 issue of The Saturday Evening Post, effectively putting Dixon on the map and giving it the nickname “Dairy Town” (at the time, Dixon was at the very heartland of the California dairy industry). The Milk Farm became very popular for teenagers spending time together and people competing to break the record of the most milk consumed in order to get their names on the restaurant’s record board.

The restaurant stayed open for many decades until closing in 1986 after a large hole was blown in the roof during a violent windstorm. Yet, even after closing, the Milk Farm's several-story tall animated-cow road sign stayed illuminated for years afterward due to its local popularity. There were plans to have the restaurant repaired, but they were never acted upon. It was eventually decided that the restaurant should be removed because the building was slowly rotting away and vagrants had begun using the building for shelter and as a place to hide and sell illegal narcotics. The residents of Dixon, however, protested against the destruction of the building, citing its important place in Dixon History. The building was instead dismantled and placed into storage in February 2000. The sign remains standing. 
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Lenten Devotion



HE LAID DOWN HIS LIFE

Thursday, April 10, 2014 Read Luke 23:44-49.

TEXT: Then Jesus, calling out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into Your Hands I commit My spirit!” (See Luke 23:46.)
Having completed the payment for all our sins, and loudly proclaiming it to the world, there is no reason for Jesus to continue suffering on the cross. He fulfills the prediction He once made to the Jews, “For this reason the Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it up again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of My own accord” (see John 10:17-18).

The time has now come. Luke tells us Jesus called out with a loud voice, committed His spirit to His Father’s safe-keeping, and breathed His last.

His sudden death and the events that surrounded it had a monumental impact on the people who witnessed it. The centurion had watched many criminals die from crucifixion—none was like Jesus. In the moments before He died Jesus proclaimed four statements with a loud voice: “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”, “I’m thirsty,” “It is finished,” and “Father, into Your hands I commend My spirit.” Crucified criminals died from suffocation due to the accumulation of fluid in their lungs. How could Jesus speak loudly if His lungs were filled with fluid? And conversely, how could He suddenly die if His lungs were empty enough to speak loudly four times?

Seeing the way Jesus conducted Himself throughout His crucifixion, the unnatural way He died, and the miraculous signs that accompanied His death, the centurion could reach only one conclusion: “Certainly this man was innocent” (see Luke 23:47) and “Truly this was the Son of God!” (See Matthew 27:54.)

THE PRAYER: Lord Jesus Christ, when Your work on the cross was done You laid down Your life. On Sunday morning You took it back up again, rising from the dead. Give me faith to trust You always. Amen. 

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mercredi 9 avril 2014

Mercredi sans mots

Wordless Wednesday


Wordless Wednesday photo SshWWButton.jpg
More Wordless Wednesday posts
HERE and HERE.
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Lenten Devotion

PAID IN FULL

Wednesday, April 9, 2014 Read Romans 3:21-26.

TEXT: When Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished” (see John 19:30).

Jesus knew within Himself that everything was completed. But for those who stood at the cross and looked at Him, there was no evidence anything had changed. There was no way to tell that God the Father had accepted Jesus’ sacrifice, no way to know this dying Man crowned with thorns was Israel’s triumphant King, or that Satan lie crushed and hell’s iron doors had been torn wide open.

Jesus wanted the world and all of us to know His mission was complete, and that we are safe from Satan’s schemes and hell’s grim thrall. So He drank the sour wine, and proclaimed in a loud voice, “It is finished!”

Anyone living at that time who heard Jesus’ word would recognize it immediately. It was stamped on a loan when the last payment had been made. We would translate it, “Paid in full.” Jesus was announcing He had completely paid every last penny of the debt we owe to God for our sin. There is nothing we can do, nothing we have to do to turn God’s anger away. 

There is no purgatory, no place of suffering to make up for our sins. There is no reason for doubts and no room for questions. Jesus has completely satisfied God’s demands, which we could never satisfy.
Our Savior spoke this sixth word so we would be certain our sins are forgiven.

He repeats this assurance in His Word in our worship services. It is also present in the water of Baptism that washes our sins away by the power of God’s Word. Likewise, it is in His body and blood given in, with, and under the bread and wine of Holy Communion.


THE PRAYER: Lord Jesus Christ, make us sure and confident that You have completed our salvation, and there is nothing we can do or need to do. Amen. 


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A. F. Branco - Gas Mask:

mardi 8 avril 2014

Gearhead Tuesday

1937 Cadillac V-16 Series 37-90
Hartmann Cabriolet


The last year for Cadillac's 452 cubic inch V-16 engine was 1937 and only 50 were manufactured. Cadillac introduced a re-designed and less expensive V-16 in 1938. By the outbreak of World War II, both Packard and Cadillac had dropped their V-12s and Cadillac's V-16 was relegated to the dust bins of history as well.

The Cadillac V-16 at 452 cubic inches was 21 cubic inches smaller than Packard's V-12. The Cadillac V-16 engine developed 150 horsepower compared to the Packard V-12's 175 horsepower. These factors played an important part of why the public perceived the Packard V-12 to be more prestigious than the Cadillac with 4 more cylinders.

Cadillac released only two V-16 chassis to independent coach builders in 1937. One was sold to Philippe Barraud, a wealthy young playboy living along the fashionable Swiss Riviera which stretched from Laussane and Montreux on the shores of Lake Geneva. Barraud commissioned Willy Hartmann, a body shop owner in Laussane, "to create a look similar to a Figoni et Falaschi-designed car" on this huge chassis.

Basic stock Cadillac components were used on this streamlined hand-formed fantasy, which is one of the largest cabriolets ever built. Initially there was some doubt whether it could be registered in Switzerland as a private car due to its 22-foot overall length. Barraud drove his car to all the fashionable haunts where it caused a sensation as it continues to today.

This custom-built Cadillac is at the Blackhawk Museum, Danville, California









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Old Car Trivia
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Lenten Devotion


ALL IS NOW FINISHED

Tuesday, April 8, 2014 Read John 19:28-29.

TEXT: After this, Jesus, knowing that all was now finished, said (to fulfill the Scripture), “I Thirst” (John 19:28).

Yesterday we reached the turning point of Psalm 22 where Jesus says in verse 21, “You have rescued Me.” The rest of the psalm goes on to predict Jesus’ resurrection. Before we return to it, we want to revisit the Gospels to conclude Jesus’ time on the cross, His death and burial.

When last in the Gospels we looked at Jesus’ fourth saying in Matthew 27:46, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” But we did not point out the time Jesus spoke these opening words of Psalm 22. Matthew writes “About the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, “My God, My God, Why have You forsaken Me?” At the ninth hour, shortly after saying this, Jesus died. But in this short span of time Jesus uttered three sayings; the first of these is Jesus’ fifth saying: “I’m thirsty.”

It would be a mistake to overlook the phrase that sets up this saying. “After this, Jesus, , said (to fulfill the Scripture), ‘I thirst.’” What is finished? The answer here is the dire suffering, the spiritual torment, the Father’s wrath unleashed on Jesus for our sins. Jesus knows He has reached the turning point. He has completed the payment for all our sins; His Father is totally satisfied.

With the price of our sins fully paid, Jesus can now ask for a drink. In so doing, He fulfills verse 15 of Psalm 22. But Jesus is not just interested in easing His terrible thirst; He is determined to free His tongue which has been sticking to His jaws. He has an important message to proclaim to those gathered around Him—and to you and me.

THE PRAYER: Lord Jesus Christ, thank You for completing our salvation by Your bitter suffering on the cross. Amen. 
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