Consumers Ripped Off At The Market pny 027

Consumers Are Paying More For Less

Consumers have always been at the mercy of vendors when it came to pricing. Pay the price or go elsewhere. Now some are starting to realize that not only is the price increasing, but the product is shrinking. This practice is nothing new but people are now becoming more aware of it. “Consumers are generally more sensitive to changes in prices than to changes in quantity,” John T. Gourville, a marketing professor at Harvard Business School, said. “And companies try to do it in such a way that you don’t notice, maybe keeping the height and width the same, but changing the depth, so the silhouette of the package on the shelf looks the same. Or sometimes they add more air to the chips bag or a scoop in the bottom of the peanut butter jar, so it looks the same size.”



I first noticed the incredible shrinking products phenomenon several days ago while making lunch. I was unable to make two sandwiches from a can of tuna as I had in the past. My wife had to go on a diet.

Consumers Prefer Getting More Rather Than Paying Less – Because They’re Bad at Math

Researchers have a term for the phenomenon in which shoppers pay little attention to unit price. They call it “base-value neglect.” Neglect at your own peril.

Is it better to get more or pay less? If you think they’re basically the same, you’re like most consumers. And, like most consumers, you’re wrong. Sending everyone back to school for math refresher courses seems out of the question. But more prominently displayed unit prices in shops and advertisements would be a great help.

Some Examples

Toilet paper is one of the categories of items that has been downsized for decades. Cottonelle continues to shrink in size, this time going from 418 sheets on a mega roll to 380 sheets. Double rolls have also downsized from 209 sheets per roll to 190.

Deceptively, in the upper right corner of the new smaller package, the company claims that you are getting 20% more sheets.

More examples: 


Marijuana-more-people-using-less-abusing pny 026

DC: More people are using marijuana, but fewer are abusing it

Marijuana abuse and dependency are becoming less common, even as states roll back restrictions on the use of the drug. This information is according to a new federal report.

Jamaica, Long Opposed to Marijuana, Now Wants to Cash In on It

New York State Health Department to allow medical marijuana home delivery services

Patients approved for medical cannabis will be able to get it delivered to their home. Rather than go to a dispensary, patients can just sit on their sofa and wait for ‘the guy.’ Or they can wait by the mailbox as some older people do. Either way, it’s better than having to travel,especially if you’ve taken your medicine.

Why not have the pizza guy deliver it? At least then they would have something for the ‘munchies’ or maybe a pizza party.

Court Upholds Federal Ban On Gun Sales To Medical Marijuana Cardholders

Court Upholds Federal Ban On Gun Sales To Medical Marijuana Cardholders

Some states have legalized weed use for medicinal purposes. But, the federal government continues to maintain that pot is as dangerous and addictive as heroin. But where is the proof? Maybe it’s in the pudding.

The price of pot is tumbling in Coloradomarijuana

Dispensaries will make the majority of their money from pot products, like beverages and edibles.

Marijuana arrests fall to lowest level since 1996

Arrests for simple weed possession in the United States fell to nearly a two-decade low last year. This information is according to new statistics released by the FBI.

Opponents of relaxing cannabis laws point out that fewer than 1 percent of state inmates serve prison time for pot possession. But, what happens to that 1 percent?

Arrests can be devastating on their own. Most people arrested for cannabis use are held in jail for at least a day. This may also cause them to lose their job.  And, they receive a criminal record that can affect their employment for the rest of their lives.

Data Suggests Legalizing Marijuana Reduces DEA Eradication Costs

Newly released data from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration appears to show that legalizing weed does what advocates have promised: It reduces the unregulated cannabis market and cuts law enforcement costs.

The DEA allocated exactly zero dollars and zero cents for cannabis eradication in Colorado for Fiscal Year 2016. That figure is down from the agency’s $80,000 budget line item for the state during Fiscal Year 2014. This is according to documents released this month in response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. Colorado voters enacted a cannabis legalization measure in November 2012 and legal sales went into effect in the state on January 1,2014.


An unprecedented number of states will vote on marijuana this fall

These states will finally vote on legalization. They are:

  • California — Recreational 
  • Nevada — Recreational 
  • Arizona — Recreational 
  • Massachusetts — Recreational 
  • Maine — Recreational 
  • Florida — Medical
  • Arkansas — Medical 
  • North Dakota — Medical 
  • Montana — Medical marijuana
Canadians Are Being Banned from the US for Admitting They’ve Smoked Weed

Turns out, that it is considered admitting to violating Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act. Immigration experts say admission is counted the same as a conviction. What will happen next year when Canada legalizes cannabis?

Clown Sightings Nationwide Cause Panic pny 025

‘Creepy’ clown sightings are spreading across the United States

Sightings of a creepy clown or clowns trying to lure children away are spreading across the US. Nobody is sure whether the whole thing is a hoax or a terrifying new trend in abductions. Four states have now reported the sinister sightings.  These sightings began in South Carolina and spread to North Carolina. They have since surfaced in Georgia and Alabama.


Creepy clown mystery continues to spread across US causing fear and panic

These clowns don’t appear to be the happy clowns you see at the circus or a child’s birthday party. Those who have seen these clowns report that they are scary and creepy looking.

Rob Zombie film denies any involvement

Rob Zombie

Some social media users have suggested that the creepy clowns are just a huge publicity stunt for an upcoming film called “31”. In the film murderous clowns hold carnival workers hostage. Some social media posts call for “clown hunting”. Some are urging people to arm themselves against these creepy circus refugees.

Clowns fear for their safety

Those who perform clowning for events, circuses and birthday parties fear for their own safety. They worry that they will be mistaken for one of the creepy clowns and harmed.

Creepy clown excuse spreading

Is it a hoax, a prank, a real threat, or a publicity stunt gone wrong?

People have been reporting the sightings of creepy clowns up to no good since late summer. The rash of clown sightings that started in Greenville S.C. has spread across the United States.These aren’t your average Bozo the clown, parents are worried, standing guard. Some people are using the sightings as excuses to stay home from school or work.

In 2014, police in Agade, France, arrested 14 teenagers dressed as clowns, carrying weapons.

A man known as the Northampton Clown terrified children and caused parents to become irate when he dressed as a clown and stood on street corners.

In 2013, Lincolnshire police warned residents that there had been a spate of people dressing as clowns and intimidating locals.

In 2013, police in Kings Lynn warned residents to stay away from clowns. Police received reports of men dressed up as clowns terrifying residents.

In 2013, in Normanton, near Wakefield, West Yorkshire, residents urged police to take action after spotting  clowns scaring residents.

Homeland Security pny 024

Homeland Security

Homeland Security has authority over the safety of the traveling public in the United States. Created in response to the September 11, 2001, attacks. Legislative history

. The Department of Homeland Security is a cabinet post in the U.S. government. Chiefly concerned with air travel, the TSA employs screening agents, Federal Air Marshals on planes, and teams of dog handlers. The use of enhanced screening procedures has caused controversy. The ‘enhanced patdown’ is often felt to be intrusive. The alternative of a scan may reveal indiscreet images, as well as cause possible health risks through radiation. Homeland Security

Lawmakers rip TSA as a ‘bloated,’ often insolent bureaucracy

The Transportation Security Administration is a “bloated bureaucracy”  and it tolerates “corrupt, rude” airport screeners who go unpunished for their behavior, the chairman of a House subcommittee said recently.

TSA Agent Arrested For Upskirt Shots At SeaTac Airport

Misconduct by TSA employees increased by 29 percent between 2013 and 2015. The hearing also coincided with the release of a report by the House Homeland Security Committee. The report said “employee misconduct of all types corrupts TSA’s core mission to protect the traveling public. It also poses serious security vulnerabilities.

“Half of TSA’s [almost 60,000] workforce allegedly committed misconduct from 2013 to 2015,” Perry said, citing data from the report. “Almost half of that number did so repeatedly.”

HOMELAND SECURITY Loses Guns, Badges…And Credibility!homeland security

House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform leaders want to know how and why Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials lost 165 firearms in three years.

The news website Complete Colorado reported that DHS marked 1,300 badges, 589 cell phones and scores of firearms lost or stolen between 2012 and 2015. DHS’s poor firearms security “shows that the department is consistently unable to safeguard sensitive property,” the congressmen wrote.

Florida Airport Gives TSA The Boot, Will Outsource Screening To Private Company

It goes without saying that if the people want something done efficiently, they do it themselves. Or, outsource it to a private third-party service provider.   Entrusting it to a bunch of bureaucrats and lazy government workers is not the way to go. A private company called ISS Action would take over security at Florida’s Punta Gorda Airport.

 TSA Homeland Security, an ‘abominable failure.’ reports that former leaders of the troubled security agency say it may be suffering from a complacency gene. Maybe not. Maybe they just hire idiots. Or, maybe the people doing the hiring are idiots.

 Missed Flights —

, —

, ,

Homeland Security
The Huffington Post reported Homeland Security screening delays and caused more than 70,000 American Airlines customers to miss their flights this year.



Racism in America pny 023

Racism Is Destroying This Country

Racism is when one ethnic group seeks to dominate, exclude or eliminate another.  Members of racial and ethnic oppressed groups continue to struggle for equal access and opportunity.

White people must wake up to the fact that racism will destroy this country. Many whites either don’t understand what’s going on, or they just don’t care. I believe that most white people haven”t a clue.

Police Racism: Real Or Imaginedracism

Police shootings of unarmed black people are becoming an almost daily occurrence.  Lack of training and social interactions between the races cause many of these shootings. But police don’t always seem to know what to do about situations in which they find themselves.

Over and over again in these incidents, this appears to be where things turn to violence. Police are trained to assert their authority quickly over uncertain situations, to give clear, commands and demand compliance. But they appear confounded by someone not immediately responding to their commands and don’t always know what to do.  In a country with a lot of untreated mental illness, they are bound to encounter these situations frequently.

Police Work – Inherently Racially Biased

Several blog posts and audio conversations by Tim Wise at are very informative. The following is one of those talks; check out his site: m-wise-on-101-1-the-beat-wdolewite-race-policing-and-whiteness-in-america/

Police work is inherently racially biased. Cops patrol predominantly poor, crime-ridden neighborhoods where most of the residents are black or Latino.  The majority of arrests end up impacting disproportionate numbers of minorities. One thing is certain; we need better training of the police before turning them loose on minority communities.

Public Housing

Country Cops

Police officers from the suburbs don’t know how to interpret aggressive behavior from what is normal in minority communities. They may become overly aggressive and create a situation. How many times have we seen this recently? Too many. And, unfortunately, some just don’t care.

We must find a solution before we tear this country apart. But I like to think we’re better than that.




Civil Forfeiture pny 022



Civil forfeiture is a process by which the government can take and sell your property without convicting, or charging you with a crime. It is one of the greatest threats to property rights in the nation today. Civil forfeiture is an area of law in which the government charges specific property of being guilty of wrongdoing.

 Civil Asset Forfeiture

Civil forfeiture allows police to seize and then keep or sell any property they allege is involved in a crime. Owners need not ever be arrested or convicted of a crime.

Seizing for Profit

Forfeiture was originally presented as a way to cripple large-scale criminal enterprises by diverting their resources. But today, many police departments use forfeiture to benefit their bottom lines. This is making seizures motivated by profit rather than crime-fighting. For people whose property was seized through civil asset forfeiture, legally regaining such property is notoriously difficult and expensive. While civil forfeiture is regularly touted as an important crime-fighting tool, authorities don’t need to charge owners with a crime in order to take their property, and most of the time, forfeiture is approved without any definitive proof of the alleged criminal ties. Once the government takes control of a person’s property, it’s typically sold off, sending proceeds back the police departments and legal offices that worked the case.


Over time, civil asset forfeiture has become particularly useful to the government in enforcing prohibition laws.  Civil forfeiture was used extensively during alcohol prohibition. More recently, it has become a very popular tactic in prosecuting the drug war.  The Department of Justice’s forfeiture fund grew from $93.7 million in 1980 to billions of dollars today. State governments tend to be less transparent. The Institute for Justice found in a 2015 report that state and local law enforcement are also responsible for seizing hundreds of millions of dollars worth of property annually.

In addition, a separate HuffPost/YouGov survey conducted last year found that the overwhelming majority of Americans are unfamiliar with civil asset forfeiture. When asked about specifics, 71 percent of respondents believed law enforcement should only be able to permanently seize property if the owner is charged with and also convicted of a crime.

Some of these seizures defy belief:

Tan Nguyen hopped in his car excited about $50,000 in casino winnings. That excitement faded when he saw police lights in the rearview mirror. A Nevada police officer suspicious of the man’s large sum of cash confiscated it, Forbes reports. Nguyen said the cop threatened to seize and tow his car if he spoke up about it. After hiring a lawyer, Nguyen was able to get his $50,000 back with attorney’s fees.

Matt Lee had his $2,400 cash confiscated from his car on a routine traffic stop. The worst part? It was taken by the same officer that targeted Nguyen: Deputy Lee Dove. In a shared settlement with Nguyen, Lee got his $2,400 back.

Deputy Dove Strikes Again

Almost three months later, Ken Smith was also pulled over for speeding.  During the stop, Deputy Dove performed a warrant check and found a warrant for a Ken Smith.  On that basis, Dove detained Smith.  According to a lawsuit filed by Smith, the Ken Smith on the warrant had a different birthday and was black.  The pulled-over Smith was white.  As the lawsuit puts it, Smith “should have been cited for speeding and let go, if there was probable cause for speeding violations.” Instead, Smith was “unarrested” and allowed to leave with his car if he signed a waiver to surrender $13,800 in cash.

OHP Uses New Device To Seize Money During Traffic Stops

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol has a device that also allows them to seize money on prepaid cards. They’re taking seizures to a new level.

It’s called an ERAD, or Electronic Recovery and Access to Data machine, and OHP began using 16 of them last month.

Here’s how it works. If a trooper suspects a person may have money tied to some type of crime, the highway patrol can scan and seize money from prepaid cards.  OHP stresses troopers do not do this during all traffic stops, only situations where they believe there is probable cause.

The Nanny State pny 021

Nanny State saving New Yorkers one grain at a time

The nanny state of New York will soon start fining restaurant chains that do no follow new guidelines set by the city council.

The New York Post reported on the city’s loony requirement for chain restaurants to post salt-shaker icons on menu items containing 2,300 or more milligrams of salt.

Why only chain restaurants and not higher end eateries?nanny state

National Salt Reduction Initiative: Nanny or Nice?

Basics. According to the CDC, the average American consumes more than 3400 mg of sodium a day. This amount is nearly 50% higher than the guideline of 2300 mg per day . High salt consumption can in some individuals contribute to high blood pressure, which increases the risk of stroke and heart disease.

Chemists Were Wrong About Splenda

They failed miserably with the artificial sweetener Splenda (sucralose). To many medicinal chemists, sucralose looked like bad news but turned out to be just the opposite.


Philadelphia passes a soda tax – Jun. 16, 2016 – CNN Money

CNN reports that in a final vote of 13-4, the Philadelphia City Council on Thursday passed a 1.5-cents-per-ounce tax on sugar-added and artificially sweetened soft drinks. That would add 18 cents to the cost of a can of soda, $1.08 for a six-pack or $1.02 for a two-liter bottle.soda tax

The new soda tax would be on top of the 8% sales tax that already applies to soda in Pennsylvania. Soda is classified as food, which is tax exempt in some states, but not in Pennsylvania.

What about coffee and tea?

Mizzou Race Activists Declare ‘Too Many White People’ at Orlando Vigil

University of Oklahoma

The University of Oklahoma has revealed it will be introducing a hotline for students to complain about microaggressions and bias incidents. “The hotline will be available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to members of the OU community. This will be used as a centralized place to locate information, resources related to microaggressions and bias incidents.

Poor babies really do need someone to hold their of oklahoma


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Trump – Clinton U.S. Armageddon pny 020

Trump or Clinton – Not much of a choice

Donald Trump

No matter the winner of the upcoming presidential election between Donald Trump And Hillary Clinton, the United States is in trouble. He has many ideas on running the government. Most of them bad. With his temperament and thin skin, I can’t imagine him dealing with our adversaries or our allies. It wouldn’t do to call Putin “The Little Ruskie,” or Merkel ” My Little Shotzie.”

The most interesting thing to come out of his dalliance with dreams of the Oval Office in 2000 was a book entitled The America We Deserve. Written with the help of author Dave Shiflett, it’s a 304-page compendium of policy proposals for a theoretical Trump administration.

Having nothing to lose essentially then increases his chance of winning, because it opens up his field of rhetorical play. “Psychology is the only necessary skill for running for president,” writes cartoonist Scott Adams, adding: “Trump knows psychology.”

Within that context, here is what Candidate Trump is doing to win campaign hearts and minds, according to Scott Adams:

  1. He knows people are fundamentally irrational.
  2. Knowing that people are irrational, Trump aims to appeal on an emotional level.
  3. By running on emotion, facts don’t matter.
  4. If facts don’t matter, you can’t be “wrong.”
  5. With fewer facts in play, it’s easier to bend reality.
  6. To bend reality, Trump is a master of identity politics — and identity is the strongest persuader.


Hillary Clinton


Psychologists use the Big 5 Factor Model to analyze personality features. It is also known as the OCEAN model for the acronym that represents:

  1. Openness= creative and curious: If you ever read an autobiography of HC, you would certainly not give high marks for creativity. She is much more practical and down-to-earth than her intellectual spouse. She is unlikely to produce innovative policies or to surprise anyone with her positions.
  2. Conscientiousness= organized and methodical: This area is where HC rises above the rest. She is methodical, detailed, and a complete machine when it comes to goal-oriented behavior.
  3. Extraversion= Outgoing and talkative:  HC is not a traditional extrovert like her spouse who is a social animal. She gravitates to people but more in a goal-directed manner.
  4. Agreeableness= Seeks harmony in relationships:  Many people who worked directly FOR HC report she can be combative and antagonistic. Individuals who work WITH HC at a peer level such as other Senators (McCain) find her agreeable for collaboration. Which side of her would emerge as president?
  5. Neuroticism= emotional, anxious, or angry: Reports from those who work directly with HC highlight her temper and outbursts of anger. Her emotions can indeed run high.

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Housing In New York City – pny 019

Housing –  Timeline of Trouble

Housing in New York City has always been expensive and hard to find. NYPD isn’t making it any easier.


  • January and February 2015: The NYPD says a confidential informant buys crack at an apartment in the Queensbridge public housing complex on two occasions. Then a search turns up crack, ammunition and $22,000. Three people are arrested.
  • April 2, 2015: The city Law Department is warned of concerns about the NYPD’s use of closing orders locking people out of their apartments before residents had the opportunity to appear in court.
  • April 24, 2015: The problem tenants move out of the Queensbridge apartment.
  • June 19, 2015: The Law Department says the NYPD ensures that no innocent people are put out on the streets by the closing orders, and that the NYPD will cross-check eviction proceedings with the public housing authority.
  • June 29, 2015: The Law Department signs off on the Queensbridge case.
  • Aug. 1, 2015: Austria Bueno and her family move into the Queensbridge apartment.
  • Dec. 11, 2015: The NYPD serves the apartment with a closing order while no one is home. Bueno’s family is now homeless.
  • Dec. 15, 2015: Bueno has her first court date and is allowed back in her home after explaining police went after the wrong tenants. NYPD doesn’t drop the case until three months later as they attempt to get her to waive her rights to sue. She refuses.
  • April 12, 2016: Bueno sues the city.
  • Housing Residents Get Ensnared by NYPD Nuisance Abatement Cases housing

    In dozens of cases, residents have been cleared of crimes, but they or their relatives have been deemed a nuisance and removed from their homes anyway, at least temporarily.  Does anyone think that this would be tolerated if these people lived in any of these areas?:

    10) Upper East Side: ($278,040)
    9) Cobble Hill: ($281,303)
    8) Beekman Place: ($283,316)
    7) Forest Hills: ($288,699)
    6) Dumbo: ($295,153)
    5) Tribeca: ($332,138)
    4) Carnegie Hill: ($333,067)
    3) Flatiron District: ($347,688)

    2) Union Square North: ($352,682)
    1) Lenox Hill: ($373,107)


    How the Poor Can Afford to Live in New York

     Megan McArdle of Bloomberg reported that Arnold Kling asks an interesting question: How can New York real estate be so expensive when the median income is so low?

    Here are four reasons he suggests:

    1. By some more accurate measure, the cost of living is not so much higher in NY.

    2. Living in NY is an expensive taste that occurs among many people, even those of modest means.

    3. NY has jobs for lower-income people that are not available in the other cities.

    4. NY’s rent controls and other housing regulations have created a lot of inframarginal winners whose housing costs are well below those of the marginal resident. (Think of those who are able to buy their apartments when they turn co-op at ridiculously below-market prices.)



pny episode 018 Ferguson Effect Real Or Imagined

Ferguson MO:

On Aug 9, 2014, a crime occurred in the City of Ferguson. An 18-year-old black male committed a strong-arm robbery at a convenience store. A short time later Michael BrownFerguson identified as the robber was fatally shot by Darren Wilson, 28, a white police officer.  The circumstances of the shooting received attention around the world. Neither a St Louis County or a Dept. of Justice investigation found enough evidence to indict Wilson. He has since left the Ferguson Police Dept.

The Atlantic magazine reported that FBI Director James Comey said that he was at least open to believing that the phenomenon—the idea that scrutiny of police since the death of Michael Brown in Ferguson on August 2014 has emboldened criminals and made police reluctant to fight crime is real.

Freddie Gray

The Ferguson Effect

I agree with the FBI director that police have been reluctant to do their job. However, I believe that the events of  May 1 have more to do with police ‘pullback’ then what happened of Aug 9, 2014.

Marilyn Mosby Baltimore City States Attorney

On May 1, 2015, the Baltimore City State’s Attorney, Marilyn Mosby, announced her office had filed charges against six officers. The charges were related to the death in police custody of a Baltimore resident, Freddie Gray. These charges came after the medical examiner’s report ruled Gray’s death a homicide. I believe these charges were brought for political motives.  Mosby urged the public to remain calm. “To the people of Baltimore and demonstrators across America, I heard your call for ‘No Justice, No Peace, she said. “Your peace is sincerely needed as I work to deliver justice on behalf of this young man.”  She didn’t get her peace or calm unless the people of Baltimore

The medical examiner ruled Gray’s death a homicide because Gray died as a result of a ‘rough ride.’ A rough ride is a form of police brutality.   A victim is helplessly thrown around the interior of a police vehicle while unable to protect themselves due to restraints.

These officers were doing nothing more than what the city of Baltimore expected from them. It isn’t difficult to understand how their arrest would affect law enforcement nationwide.

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