Archive for May, 2011

Who are These People and Why are They Telling Me What To Do? by Ellen Voie

May 30th, 2011

When you enter any industry you will be overwhelmed by numerous acronyms; and the trucking industry is no different. In addition to MPG, EOBR, GOAL and others, your carrier will add to the list of letters that will become significant to your job.

Add to these alphabet mixtures a list of governing bodies that have even more influence over your job, DOT, FMCSA, NHTSA, NTSB and your head will start to hurt trying to remember which group has authority over what parts of your daily duties.

It’s to your benefit to understand each of these organizations so you can be better informed and prepared in knowing what to expect from each one. Some have regulatory authority and some do not. Some make recommendations and some do not. Knowing the parameters of each group and what control (if any) they have over the trucking industry should be important to you.

You are probably the most familiar with the United States Department of Transportation (US DOT) led by Secretary Ray LaHood. This is a government entity that was established by an act of Congress in 1966. The DOT is a large organization and oversees eleven administrations, which include the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Regardless of your role in the trucking industry, each of these agencies has some influence in your occupation. You can blame the railroads for the enactment of interstate regulation, as the Interstate Commerce Act of 1887 was intended to give the government control over the rail industry. In 1995 the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) was terminated and its functions were relegated to the Federal Highway Administration under the US DOT.

The ICC lost much of its effect during the passage of the Motor Carrier Regulatory Reform and Modernization Act of 1980 under President Carter and “deregulated” the trucking industry. One of the roles of the ICC was to issue Motor Carrier numbers to interstate carriers and the department of transportation now assumed this duty; the designation was referred to as DOT numbers.

The other regulatory bodies under the DOT that directly affect the trucking industry include the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) which works with states to ensure the safety of our nation’s highways. Administrator Victor Mendez currently leads this agency. The mission of the FWHA is to “improve mobility on our nation’s highways through national leadership, innovation, and program delivery.”

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), under the leadership of Administrator Anne Ferro, was established in 1999 to prevent commercial motor vehicle related fatalities and injuries. This agency’s focus is on safety and has the authority to enforce safety regulations, strengthen commercial motor vehicle equipment and operating standards, and to increase safety awareness. Current initiatives include hours of service review, CSA implementation and EOBR implementation.

Another agency under the DOT’s authority is the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which appears to have similar goals to FMCSA, but is also concerned with four wheelers and other motor vehicles. NHTSA, under the leadership of David Strickland, focuses on distracted driving, impairment, seat belt use and child safety restraint use.

One additional organization under the DOT umbrella is the Surface Transportation Safety Board (STB), which is an economic regulatory agency led by Daniel Elliott III, its current Chairman. This agency focuses on the railroad industry and was created as a successor to the ICC.

In addition to these agencies, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) was created as an independent agency to promote safety and assist victims of transportation related accidents and to investigate accidents to determine probable cause. Currently Deborah A. P. Hersman chairs the board that was originally placed under the DOT in 1967, but was changed to a separate entity in 1974. The agency has no authority to regulate, fund or be involved in the operation of any mode of transportation and is directed only to investigate and recommend corrective actions from an objective viewpoint.

You may have wondered why so many government agencies had an interest in the trucking industry, but now you understand that some are concerned about safety, some focus on commercial vehicles and other are charged with investigating accidents. The one common thread for all these groups is a focus on safer and more efficient transportation.

The next time someone complains about the government’s involvement in transportation, you’ll be better educated on each agency’s role.

© 2011, Truck Drivers News Blog. All rights reserved.

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This is the life. We all have to be somewhere. This is my life. Guest post by Jean McHarry

May 25th, 2011

Hey! Todd here. Today I’ve got what can only be described as a guest blog post within a guest blog post. I won’t be the one entertaining you today. Let me explain. You and I both know I’m a blabbermouth, but sometimes I just don’t know what to say about a particular subject. I had one of those cases back in July of 2010 with a post called Riding Along.

This post was written due to a question I got from Lucinda, a woman who was planning on riding along with her trucker husband, but only as a passenger. She was asking for advice. Well, I’ve never done that and neither had The Evil Overlord, so I enlisted the help of a couple of Twitter friends. Patty, a.k.a. @luv18wheels and @CB_SnowAngel (who apparently has given up on Twitter) gave some sound advice, but I knew I’d want more eventually. That’s how we arrived today at my first guest post.

I don’t plan on doing this a lot, but I thought I knew someone who could both answer the question better than I could and reach meet my required level on the Snark-O-Meter. Recently, I decided to hit up Jean McHarry, a.k.a the infamous @raysunshine77 on Twitter. She’s a first class smart aleck on Twitter and she always cracks me up with her sarcastic sense of humor. I’m also beginning to wonder if she’s a long lost sister of The Evil Overlord. After much manipulation (I lied and told her I liked her), she finally acquiesced. I think you’ll be glad she did. She did a bang-up job on what she admitted was her first writing assignment since high school. I’ll let her introduce herself. That’s her standing next to her devastatingly handsome husband. Love that macho mustache. Hey, wait a second…

This is the life. We all have to be somewhere. This is my life.

By Jean McHarry

Don’t call me a seat cover! Don’t assume I’m a lot lizard! Don’t disrespect me because you don’t want women taking away a man’s job! Don’t accuse me of not having knowledge of this industry because I ride! Don’t ask me to run away with you cause you have a bigger, badder truck! And for the love of all that is chrome, don’t ask me to move the stupid truck!

I have driven, I’ve dispatched, I’ve loaded and unloaded trailers and I’ve run a truck stop. DOT assumes I’m a driver and will sometimes ask for my log book. I have to produce paperwork to show that I am allowed to be here, that I won’t do anything that would be considered work and I pay for this privilege. I love my life, I love being out here on the road. I enjoy every aspect of being a truck driver except I don’t drive the truck and let’s make this clear, I don’t want to drive the truck and no one is going to make me.

My husband has diesel running through his veins. He says it’s all he ever wanted to do (that’s a small lie, he also wanted to be a train engineer or a boat captain) and I believe it’s all he’ll ever do. I enjoy being out here. I love going new places, meeting new people and just being a little bit of a gypsy. Waking up someplace new and not knowing where I’m going to be tomorrow is a thrill that I truly appreciate. I am a passenger. That’s all I want to be.

I call myself a rolling assistant because I do more than just sit here and look pretty. I spend about a quarter of my time playing navigator. Between maps (both truck and city versions), a functional GPS, the company’s routing, the local directions, and my notes on the local directions, I can tell where we’ve been, where we’re at, where we need to be going and just how long it should take to do it all. This knowledge also helps me with keeping an eye on the weather. Twitter really has been my best friend in this endeavor. Those up to the minute updates that tell me it’s raining in Texas helped a whole lot when we were dealing with blizzards in Buffalo. I keep track of loads and payroll, keep up on all relevant news and generally just keep him company.

I cook. That sounds so simple when you type it. Is there any way to make it simple in the truck? We don’t have a refrigerator, so storage of perishables must be done in a cramped cooler that also holds our water. Canned goods have one cabinet available to them and it can’t be opened without something landing on a foot or head. I carry a crock pot, a lunchbox (it’s shaped just like those old lunch boxes your dad took to work and functions kind of like a crock pot) and an electric skillet. One of these days when I find room, I want a rice cooker but at this point something else has to move out for it to have a home.

We try to eat out of the truck for 18 out of 21 meals. Sometimes we accomplish this, most weeks it’s closer to 14 out of 21. Sometimes, we just need out of the truck. It’s not like eating dinner at the house. Imagine you had to eat every meal with your spouse in the bathroom (just throw a mattress over the tub and put the lid down on the toilet). At some point, you would need a break. Restaurants have so much more space and other people to help carry on conversations. These two luxuries can make a really long day seem like a vacation. Because when there are just two of you, there is only so much to be said and quite frankly if he asks me one more time “whatcha doing?”, I might hit him with a tire thumper.

I clean. That’s another one of those things that sounds so simple but is never as simple as you want it to be. Mirrors need to be cleaned. Glass on both the inside and the outside. Dusting (I hate dust and in a truck, the stuff just reappears the moment you knock it off). To sweep and mop (something I try to do every other day) requires half the truck be picked up and put someplace else while I accomplish such an easy task. The cooler (loaded down with ice, half a case of water and whatever perishables have been purchased for the week), the crock pot, the lunchbox oven, the trash can, 4 pairs of boots, 3 pairs of tennis shoes and the rugs. They must go somewhere. I just wish I knew where. The bed is already loaded down with luggage, a shower bag, my purse, laundry baskets, and a dozen bags of other stuff that one of these days will eventually find a home. Once the floors are all pretty, it all has to be put back. At least until bedtime. Then everything has to be moved back up front so we can sleep.

My goal is to try to make his load a little lighter, especially since I increase the weight of the truck (I have to bring a lot of stuff). Didn’t you see all the stuff I just mentioned? I’d like to have so much more, but there will never be room and I probably wouldn’t use it if I finally got it in here. My resolution each year is to try that whole minimalistic lifestyle. One of these years, it’s gonna happen. Trust me.

I spend my day trolling for news articles to read to him. I download podcasts that we both enjoy to kill the hours of driving. There is only so much music and news you can listen to in an 11 hour day. Even less now, since every hour the whole thing seems to repeat. We joke, we tease, we argue, we repeat.

I spend a huge chunk of my day online. I harass people I’ve never met (and some I never will) on Twitter. I stalk people I do know on Facebook. I farm and tame the frontier. I troll truck driving and cooking forums. He used to complain that I spent most of my day on the computer and phone. He’d ask what could I possibly be doing that would waste 7 hours a day. Why wasn’t I looking at the beautiful scenery and enjoying just relaxing while he drove? Why wasn’t I paying more attention to what was going on around us? That’s what he does. Why couldn’t I do that? I tried to explain.

From my side, with no vehicle to control, just looking at scenery that I’ve seen 100 times isn’t entertaining. It’s like staring at a wall. Now when we go home, I drive. That’s 8 to 12 hours, depending on who we are going to visit. He whines the whole time that he’s bored. I tell him to relax and enjoy the scenery, pay more attention to what’s going on around us. That’s how I get new toys.

I’d like to say we are unique, but that wouldn’t be true. I know plenty of couples out here that are in the same boat we are; one drives and one rides. Anybody that has met him will ask how I spend 24/7 with him. I am heavily medicated. All kidding aside, we love each other and we take care of each other and we are co-dependent on each other. We’ve spent time apart. I didn’t like it. He didn’t like it. I respect couples that team. I respect women that stay at home while their husband is out here on the road. I’ve been there, done that and I don’t plan on going back.

*Todd here again. Please leave your comments and/or questions here and I’ll make sure Jean sees them. You can also contact her directly through Twitter @raysunshine77, email her at [email protected], or check out her Facebook page. I hear she also doesn’t mind the occasional stalker. ;-) *


© 2011, Truck Drivers News Blog. All rights reserved.

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Trucker Pullover Protest Against Rising Diesel Prices Monday May 23 1-2 PM

May 21st, 2011

New York NY – May 20, 2011 – On May 23rd, 2011 from 1:00-2:00pm Eastern truckers are being asked to pull their trucks to the side of the road for one hour to gain the attention of Washington and focus it on soaring fuel prices. Over regulation, the lack of new exploration, and the lack of refining capacity near Cushing, OK are believed to be responsible for the higher diesel prices.

Bruce MacIsaac or David Webb – Pullover Protest
Phone: Bruce MacIsaac 724-910-9225, David Webb 212-372-8008

New York NY – May 20, 2011 – On May 23rd, 2011 from 1:00-2:00pm Eastern truckers are being asked to pull their trucks to the side of the road for one hour to gain the attention of Washington and focus it on soaring fuel prices. Over regulation, the lack of new exploration, and the lack of refining capacity near Cushing, OK are believed to be responsible for the higher diesel prices.

A caller to SiriusXM Patriot’s David Webb Show, on April 23, 2011 suggested a one hour demonstration protesting higher diesel prices. From that call, plans for a pullover have begun. As higher diesel prices fluctuate and have soared above $4.19 per gallon, truck drivers and companies are finding it increasingly difficult to deliver freight without increasing rates. Increased rates for freight, increases the price of everything else from milk to toilet paper.

Organizers hope that a highly visible pullover of one hour will be enough to put pressure on Washington to ease regulations. When trucks don’t move, nothing moves. Food, fuel, household items and raw materials for manufacturing are all carried over the nation’s highways by truck. It is hoped that a single hour will focus enough attention on the issue that longer pullover protests will be unnecessary.

SiriusXM Radio Personality and Tea Party leader David Webb has set up a website for truckers interested in communicating with other truckers about politics, the tea party, and trucking issues. It was on this site that the idea of a “Pullover Protest” was first mentioned. More information about the protest, as well as information about Tea Party Truckers in general can be found at the site:

© 2011, Truck Drivers News Blog. All rights reserved.

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Ice Road Truckers – Series Premiere Sunday, June 5 at 9/8c

May 19th, 2011

In 2000, The History Channel aired a 46-minute episode titled “Ice Road Truckers” as part of the Suicide Missions (later Dangerous Missions) series.

Based on the book Denison’s Ice Road by Edith Iglauer, the episode detailed the treacherous job of driving trucks over frozen lakes, also known as ice roads, in Canada’s Northwest Territories.

After 2000, reruns of the documentary were aired as an episode of the series Modern Marvels instead. Under this banner, the Ice Road Truckers show garnered very good ratings.

In 2006, The History Channel hired Thom Beers, owner of Original Productions and executive producer of Deadliest Catch, to create a series based on the Ice Road book.

Shot in high definition (although the season ended before History HD was launched in the US), the show “charts two months in the lives of six extraordinary men who haul vital supplies to diamond mines and other remote locations over frozen lakes that double as roads”

Now in its 5th season Ice Road Truckers return Sunday, June 5th at 9/8c on the History Channel. This seasons drivers are:

The Polar Bear
AGE: 48
SEASONS DRIVEN: 1, 2, 3, 4

Known as the “Polar Bear,” Hugh has proven to be the toughest of the tough. In Season 1, he ran his Yellowknife crew so hard that some of his drivers quit. For the past two seasons he’s run the Dalton, and proven himself as one of the best drivers on the ice. Hugh can drive all night, work all day and still have time to spout lots of opinions about those who fall short of his work ethic. This season, Hugh is back on his home turf running Canada’s most dangerous ice roads and ready to take on any challenge.

AGE: 57
SEASONS DRIVEN: 1, 2, 3, 4

Alex is a larger-than-life character with over 30 years of driving and hauling under his belt. He is the proud father of 11 children and has seven grandchildren. In Season 2, he was forced to leave the road early because of health problems. In Season 3, he exhibited signs of slowing down and it seemed the strain on his health would take him out of the hunt, but in the end he powered through to prove himself a skilled trucker and even headed to India to tackle riding some of the world’s deadliest roads. Will Alex have the big comeback he’s been looking for, finally overtaking Hugh as the best Canadian on the ice road? Or will his age and health conditions sideline him forever? Can he show us that age is actually an asset on the ice roads?

AGE: 30

Lisa is a rambunctious tomboy truck driver and motocross-riding daredevil. She has crashed both trucks and motorcycles, but nothing has scared her off from running the Dalton. Lisa mastered the dangerous mountain roads of India, navigating a truck in a country where women aren’t normally seen behind the wheel of any vehicle. In Alaska, she has to battle the big boys daily to keep her job and works hard to prove herself worthy of bigger and tougher loads. She’s no rookie, but some drivers feel she’s a lightweight and can’t be trusted on the road. This season, can she finally get the boys to take her seriously and prove herself as a heavy-haul driver?

The Bad Boy of the Ice Roads

Rick has been away from the ice roads for a few seasons, but this year he and his blue mohawk are back in business. Fired by Hugh Rowland in Season 1, Rick proved himself in Season 2, working the same Arctic roads as his former boss, but Rick has always been plagued by breakdowns, accidents and other truck troubles that keep him out of the hunt. Confident after tackling the treacherous mountain roads of India, Rick is ready to return to the more familiar terrain of the ice roads, but will his old rivalry with Hugh make or break Rick in this season’s dash for the cash?

The Angry Alabama Wild Card
AGE: 45

Alabama native Dave is a self-described hothead with 25 of years trucking experience who flies by the seat of his pants. After going to India and driving some of the world’s deadliest roads without any game plan going in, he looks to do the same for his first stab at the North American ice roads. Will this veteran be able to handle the challenge of being an ice-road rookie? How will the other local and more even-tempered drivers receive this son of the South?

Tony Molesky

A single dad and 19-year veteran of the ice road, Tony is gearing up to take a shot at winning the load count this season. Tony thinks he’s got what it takes to make his mark on the Dalton. He’s won plenty of trophies as a former high-school wrestling champion, but there is one accolade not yet in his possession–King of the Haul Road. In the prime of his career, it’s next on his list, but after forcing his truck into a ditch to dodge a head-on collision in the first accident of his career, his confidence is shaken. Will he be able to overcome his fears and get back on the horse? Or will the near-miss, and the new competition, derail him for good?

The Rookie
AGE: 27

At just 5’4″, Maya doesn’t fit the stereotype of the burly truck driver, but she has an outsized passion for trucking that she wears on her skin -she sports a “Kenworth” tattoo on her neck that advertises her commitment to the job. Maya got her start hauling heavy loads on the crowded streets and highways of New York City, a proving ground for any trucker looking to hone their skills with an 18-wheeler. This season, she is a rookie on the ice roads and one of the few women toughing it out in a man’s game, but her ambition and determination could help make her a contender on the hills and climbs of the frozen Dalton Highway. Maya is used to achieving exactly what she puts her mind to, but will that be enough torque to get her up the Dalton?

The History Channel

© 2011, Truck Drivers News Blog. All rights reserved.

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Just When I think the ATA might be Helping Trucking – They go and do this

May 19th, 2011

The American Trucking Associations Board of Directors today called on policymakers to respect contracts between carriers and shippers and abandon proposals to interfere in those arrangements.

Specifically, the Board voted to oppose efforts at regulating detention time – the time drivers and trucks wait to load or unload their cargo.

“ATA and its members value the time of our drivers,” ATA President and CEO Bill Graves said following the Board’s decision. “However, federal intervention into this area would have significant impacts on the contractual agreements between carriers and shippers.”

The above quote in bold tells me exactly what I have been screaming for a while now. The Anti-Trucking-Association is just looking out for its members who we all know are the carriers and or shippers and receivers. Bill Graves’ statement saying the ATA and its members value the time of their drivers – is obviously false – or they would be behind Peter DeFazio’s Detention Bill he introduced earlier this month. Instead they are against it. I have come to the conclusion that the trucking industry would be better off if it had less “chiefs and more Indians.” As it stands now trucking has more “chiefs than Indians.”

“The ability of carriers to negotiate rates, routes and service with our shippers is very important to us,” said, ATA Chairman Barbara Windsor, president and CEO of Hahn Transportation, Inc., New Market, Md. “Federal regulation in this area would directly affect shipping rates and would significantly change the playing field for carriers and shippers.”

“No carrier wants to see our drivers’ time wasted,” ATA First Vice Chairman Dan England, chairman and president of C.R. England Inc., Salt Lake City, Utah said. “However, this is not an issue that can be handled with a ‘one-size, fits all’ regulation and as a result is best addressed in contractual agreements between carriers and shippers.”

“This isn’t a big carrier issue or a small carrier issue,” said Keith Tuttle, president of Motor Carrier Services Inc., Northwood, Ohio, and chairman of ATA’s Small Carrier Advisory Committee. “The ability to freely negotiate contracts is something all carriers want to protect.”

© 2011, Truck Drivers News Blog. All rights reserved.

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The Road to Smutville

May 18th, 2011

Photo by PinkMoose from Flickr

Driving a truck nowadays is almost like having a subscription to Playboy. Well, I guess the billboards only show portions of the actual goods, so maybe it’s closer to Maxim. Any way you look at it though, today’s truck driver has waaaaay too many loads going to Smutville.

Now I know what some of you are thinking. “Here comes another lecture from a holier-than-thou type. Who are you to judge what’s right or wrong.” Okay. First off, I’m not holier-than-thou. Second, you can do and think what you want; including not reading this post. Third, it’s my blog, so it’s my opinion.

I’m sure some of you think there is absolutely nothing wrong with porn. You’re entitled to your opinion. Now I ask you this. What good comes from pornography? Sure, since the porn industry brings in more cash than all the major sports combined, I suppose you could say it stimilates the economy. But how does that benefit anyone? Other than your two happy minutes of alone time, I mean. I guess it does provide some jobs, but the majority of the money you spend on smut goes directly into the producer’s pockets, which in turn, goes to make more porn. If you can think of some wonderful benefit of porn that I’m neglecting, please feel free to argue your point by leaving a comment. I’ll be glad to have the debate. Now back to the subject at hand. Uhhhh… perhaps that’s a back cliché to use right now.

Anyway, I’ve been truckin’ coast to coast since 1997, and I don’t remember it always being so bad. Maybe my memory is just shot from staring at too many long stretches of road, but back then I only remember Las Vegas being overrun with porno billboards. I can’t say as I was all that surprised about that though. It is Vegas after all. And being Vegas, they have now lifted it to a new level. Last time I was through there, they had numerous billboards advertising production job openings for a company called “Bait & Tackle.” This looked “fishy” to me. The pictures on these billboards were of Jolly Green Giant-sized half-naked men and women. My suspicions led me to wonder if these “productions” were porno flicks. Turns out, I was right. Here’s the story if you don’t believe me.

While Vegas is always at the forefront of risqué, the rest of the country isn’t that much better. If you’re in an urban area, there are billboards for “Gentlemen’s Clubs” every time you glance up from the road. Now I can honestly say I’ve never seen one gentlemen in these establishments. It’s hard to be gentlemanly when you’re holding up a dollar bill with lust in your eyes and drool on your lip. And yes, I’m ashamed to admit that I’ve been to a few strip clubs in my younger years. All three times, I buckled to peer pressure. It was never my idea. I can honestly say that I was just never into it. While I wasn’t exactly a great Christian example back in those days, I guess my Christian upbringing always made me feel that something was just “wrong” about the whole situation. It didn’t help that I’m a tightwad. I couldn’t really see the sense in paying a woman to tease me. I knew plenty of girls that would do that for free.

Temptation isn’t just in the cities though. Even out in the stix, you’ve got billboards telling you to that there is truck parking at the adult video store at the next exit. And how convenient that it’s open 24 hours. Couples welcome? I’ll bet. I wonder how many of those places have hidden cameras stashed around the joint? It still amazes me how many of these shops are on the highways of America.

Every once in a while you’ll see a billboard for massage parlors. And guess what? They have truck parking. And how about the topless cafe’s down on I-75 in Southeast. Their billboards list topless waitresses, food, truck parking and showers. I’m sorry, but even if my e-log tells me I’m out of driving time, I’m not stopping for the night and taking a shower at one of these places. I feel sorry for the plumber who has to clean out those drains.

Even when you’re at the truck stop, you’re not immune from sexual bombardment. Most of the large truck stop chains stay away from porno mags, but many of the smaller places have magazine racks that devote more than half the shelf space to porn. Some of them don’t even bother to use those plastic covers that hide all the naughty bits. That always disturbs me, knowing that a graphic image like that can get burned into a kid’s brain with one glance.

Once you’re back in the protective cocoon known as your truck, you’d think you’re safe. But no, here comes the lot lizard. That’s a truck stop prostitute, for you non-truckers out there. Granted, most truck stops don’t have infestations of lot lizards, but you can pretty much count on a knock on your door if you’re anywhere near an urban area. I’ve seen a few nice-looking lot lizards over the years, but by and large, you’ve gotta be pretty desperate to go there.

Clearly, all these smut pushers know their audience. If their advertising didn’t work, they’d change their billboards. Sadly, it is working. It’s not very often that I pass an adult store without a truck in the parking lot. Likewise, lot lizards wouldn’t be frequenting truck stops if there weren’t drivers forking over the cash for their services. Truck stops wouldn’t be carrying nudie mags if drivers weren’t buying them either.

So what’s a driver to do? Well, if he’s a perv with no conscience or morals, he goes as crazy as a nymphomaniac at a swinger’s convention. While he’s doing so, he’ll probably get lost in a world that will only take him further into the heart of Smutville. I’ve never been an avid porno guy, but I’d be a big fat liar-liar-pants-on-fire if I said I’ve never seen any. I’ve seen my share. Some of my friends went for the hardcore stuff, but I’ve always liked something left to the imagination. See, I was even classy back then. Pssshhht.

I can only tell you that the more you see this stuff, the more perverse your mind gets. I hate to tell you guys this, but your mechanic is not a hot chick who’s going to get all hot and bothered when you bring your car in for a busted radiator. It’s just plain unrealistic. Your partner may or may not get into playing “housewife and UPS man.” But guys, you don’t really want your wife hopping into the sack with every delivery guy that shows up at your door, do you? But hey, because there’s a woman doing it on video, your distorted mind tells you that you should probably leave your partner to find someone more adventurous. Good luck with that.

Like I said, I was never that into the porno world, so it was easy to get rid of it altogether. I’m grateful that I never got lost in it. I know myself, and I know that I don’t want to go where that road would take me. A few slaps upside the head from The Evil Overlord was all it took for me. It’s not so easy for others to walk away.

So why am I even talking about all of this? It’s actually for two reasons. I’m trying to warn anyone who may already be struggling with this, and I’m also trying to help those who may be considering becoming a truck driver in the future. It’s similar to me telling someone with a weight problem to really consider it before they start trucking, because it’s likely that their weight problems will only escalate once they set foot in a truck. It’s just the nature of the beast.

If you’re going to be all alone out on the road, you’ve got one of two choices. You can embrace the smut and try to have a guilt and STD-free time, or you can resist the urge to give into temptation. Naturally, the latter is the harder of the two and the road less traveled.

Here’s the thing. It would be all too easy to take the road to Smutville. Most of us drivers are alone out here on the road. We could stop into any video store or strip club we want. Who’s ever going to find out? “Sorry I didn’t answer the phone last night, honey. I was in an area with no cell service.” Or you could load up on porno mags when you leave the house and trash them before you get home. The pages are probably all stuck together by then anyway.

My point is this. If you want to stay away from this stuff, you need to have a strong will and possibly even a little help. Now I’m a Christian, but even so, I’m not immune to this stuff. I admit that all the opportunities out here are tempting at times. When I see a racy billboard or a nice set of legs in the car beside me, I try not to take a second look. Sometimes I succeed. Sometimes I fail. The thing that helps me most is that I know God is always watching. Even if The Evil Overlord never found out, I would know and so would God. That’s enough to keep me from caving in, but if you’re not a believer in a supreme being with an ever watchful eye, you may need more help.

If you even think you might be addicted to porn, just do a Google search for “pornography addiction help line” and call one of the toll-free numbers to get some help. And if that still isn’t enough, I might be able to talk The Evil Overlord into coming over and giving you a good THWACK upside your head. You know, while that is rather effective, she does seem to enjoy it just a taaaaad bit too much.

*Please feel free to leave a comment and/or give any further advice you might have. And please go rate this blog post. Now go on with your bad self.*


© 2011, Truck Drivers News Blog. All rights reserved.

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Something Ray LaHood and Obama are not Saying about Allison Transmissions

May 10th, 2011

While Obama is out “touring/campaigning” the country visiting all these manufactures of supposed “greenier” vehicles, and American jobs, there is something they are not mentioning.

In a blog post by U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood today wrote: “Less gas, more jobs; Allison Transmission leading the way to a future America can win” but he forgot to mention that this administration gave Allison Transmission the hybrid plant $62 million in stimulus cash.

This means American taxpayers are going to be paying “double” for these new hybrid buses and hybrid commercial trucks that will be fitted with the Allison-made hybrid transmission systems.

So, upon learning this do you still feel like Obama and Ray LaHood are spreading good news, (about jobs, and less dependency on oil?)

Or are they covering up the bad news, (American taxpayers have to pay back the stimulus money) with good news of “jobs and lessor dependency” on oil?

The White House said Obama chose Allison because the company is a leader in hybrid technology used in medium and heavy-duty commercial vehicles, such as buses and military vehicles. If I were a betting man, I would bet that Obama chose Allison because he gave them $62 million dollars for their votes in 2012.

Ray LaHood wrote:For the last 100 years, Allison Transmission has been at the forefront of America’s mission to out-innovate and out-build the competition. “And they’re doing it with American workers. In the last month alone, Allison has added 50 new jobs, and they expect to add another 200 jobs within the next two years.” The part that Ray intentionally left out of this article is the part about how American taxpayers are having to pay for those jobs – RE: In 2009, Allison received more than $62 million in federal stimulus dollars for the project.

“Last month, you added 50 jobs at this company, and I hear you plan to add another 200 over the next two years. We’re very proud of that,” Obama said. Sorry Obama, but I am NOT proud of that, I am PAYING for that. “This is the kind of company that makes sure America remains the most prosperous country of the world,” Obama said while he was at the plant in Indianapolis, IN last week.

It is kind of ironic that Ray LaHood would title his article “Less gas, more jobs; Allison Transmission leading the way to a future America can win” while we all know that the Obama flies on Air Force One around the country touting “we need to be less dependent on oil.” As recent estimates suggest that Air Force One costs $68,000 an hour (mostly for fuel), but the yearly costs to operate the two 833,000 pound behemoths (yes, the president has two of them) are still a mystery.

Also, the fact that Obama rides around in “The Beast” while on the ground. Nicknamed by the secrete service “The Beast” is built like a tank, gets just about the same fuel mileage as a tank too. At a mere 8-mpg Obama should re-think what he told a person who drives a vehicle that does not get a very good gas mileage.

This guy at Obama’s town hall in Pennsylvania last month said to him, “You were talking about the rise of gas prices. I know back in the seventies they were going from our license plates, odd to evens, days we could get gas. I know we’re not at that stage right now but they did lower the prices after that. Is there a chance of the gasoline price being lowered again?” Now, listen to Obama’s answer.

Obama replied, “I’m just gonna be honest with ya. There’s not much we can do next week or two weeks from now. (snickers) If you’re getting eight miles a gallon you may want to think about a trade-in. You can get a great deal. I promise you GM, or Ford, they’re – or Chrysler, they’re – gonna be happy to give you a deal on – on something that gets you better gas mileage.”

Obama to Tout Indy Transmission Plant – Saved By $62.8 Million in Stimulus Cash or $25,120 Per Employee
Less gas, more jobs; Allison Transmission leading the way to a future America can win
Obama Touts Hybrid Tech At Allison Transmission
Presidential state car (United States)
Obama to Citizen on Gas Prices: Trade in Your Car and Buy a Volt

© 2011, Truck Drivers News Blog. All rights reserved.

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Attention Truckers – Contact Congress to Support Defazio’s Detention Bill

May 9th, 2011

Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) introduced a bill, H.R. 756, in the House of Representatives to address the problem of excessive wait times for trucks at shipping and receiving facilities. Otherwise known as “detention time,” this is an issue truckers have continually brought to the attention of lawmakers and policymakers because of how it affects hours-of-service regulations, productivity and highway safety.

As truckers know all too well, detention time is a pervasive problem that not only wastes resources, but also impacts safety as drivers sometimes feel pressured to violate hours of service requirements in order to make up lost time. Shippers and receivers are not going to correct this problem on their own and need an incentive to start doing the right thing, which is to let that trucker get back on the road. HR 756 will help make this happen.

Today, the Congressman circulated what is known as a “dear colleague” to all the members of the House of Representatives. A dear colleague is a letter asking for other members to stand behind this legislation as a co-sponsor. The more co-sponsors that sign onto a bill the better the chances a bill has to eventually “move” and be brought up for a vote.

“In a just-in-time, deregulated industry, trucking has de-evolved to where truckers are donating their time to the benefit of shippers and receivers. The problem persists because it doesn’t cost shippers or receivers to squander drivers’ time,” said Todd Spencer, Executive Vice President, OOIDA.

The bill calls for a study and a regulatory rule-making on detention times and compensation. Among other things, the study would evaluate average lengths of time that drivers are detained before loading and unloading and the impact on hours of service. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) would be required to introduce a new regulation, setting standards for maximum numbers of hours a driver may be detained and not compensated.

Surveys conducted by OOIDA indicate as many as 40 hours per week are spent by drivers waiting to be loaded or unloaded. A study by FMCSA says the cost to the industry is more than $3 billion per year and the cost to the public is more than $6.5 billion per year.

We have come too far on this issue to let this bill sit silently with no names attached. Every day lawmakers receive dozens of requests to sign onto pieces of legislation and we need to make this important bill stand out! Please take the time to contact your Representative and ask him/her to “sign onto” this bill.

To contact your representative, call the U.S. Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121, tell the operator that you want to speak with your congressman and provide the operator with your home zip code. You can also look up that information at


© 2011, Truck Drivers News Blog. All rights reserved.

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Gender Equity for Professional Drivers by Ellen Voie

May 9th, 2011

When you’re a professional driver, the steering wheel doesn’t know whether you’re a man or a woman! That’s something my friend Ingrid reminds me of when I talk about the benefits of being a woman in the trucking industry. You’re paid the same regardless of your gender.

It used to be the case that women made about sixty cents for every dollar a man makes. A recent report by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research claims that occupations with the highest median income still show a disparity between the earnings for women.

For example, a female Physician or Surgeon earns (on average) only 71 percent of their male counterparts’ salary. The same is true for Chief Executives, as women early 72 percent of what male CEOs earn. Food preparation and servers, especially in fast food restaurants provide a better income for women than men, as women earn 112 percent of what men earn in the same positions.

Now all lower paying jobs favor women, as agricultural work provides women with 84 percent of the income men earn in the field. Female cooks still earn slightly less than males (95 percent) and female home health care aides receive 98 percent of what their male peers earn.

If you look at recruiting ads looking for professional drivers you will often see the starting pay right in the ad. There’s no asterisk that says, “This pay rate is for men only.” Not only is that illegal, it would be foolish for a carrier to differentiate pay when the level of service is not dependent on the gender of the person behind the wheel.

Does this mean that companies still discriminate in some careers when it comes to gender? Not necessarily, as “correlation is not causation” states Thomas Sowell, Professor of Economics at Cornell University.

In “Economic Facts and Fallacies,” Sowell reminds us that historically, women have worked in areas that did not require the physical strength that was valued in a more industrial and agricultural based era. This was especially evident in countries that valued boys over girls and would even kill newborn girls who were seen as less capable of supporting the family’s economic needs.

As our nation progressed toward a more technology-based environment, the need for physical strength and stamina was diminished and gender based hiring was less significant. However, on average, women still earned less than men while working in the same occupations.

Is the pay difference due to discrimination? Again, not necessarily true according to Diana Furchtgott-Roth and Christine Stolba in “Women’s Figures: An Illustrated Guide to the Economic Progress of Women In America.” The authors site statistics to show that the pay disparity is not due to hiring or salary practices on the part of employers, it’s due to societal issues related to childbearing. In fact, women often earn more than men when they choose to remain childless and pursue a comparable career path.

No one is suggesting that women should earn less because they are capable of having children; the reality is that women often CHOOSE occupations that allow them the flexibility to raise a family. As Sowell states, women often make career choices that allow them to take time to withdraw from full time work or lessen their hours in order to devote time to raising children.

Since women still have the greater responsibility in the home, the ability to put in overtime and work nights and weekends is limited. A Harvard Business Review survey (December 2006) found that women hold less than twenty percent of high-pressure jobs. Women spend less time pursuing a career when they decide to raise a family. Men have the same dilemma, but the reality is that child rearing is still the primary responsibility for women today.

Many women who have chosen to become professional drivers have dealt with the issue of raising children or caring for other family members. It’s a sacrifice to leave them in order to earn a living behind the wheel. Fortunately, in this industry, the pay discrepancy is minimal and carriers hire and pay for your ability to move their freight in a safe manner.

Remember, the steering wheel doesn’t know if the hands guiding it are male or female. Driving a truck is one of the few professions that is truly gender neutral in pay and career choices and will offer even greater opportunities for women in the coming years.

© 2011, Truck Drivers News Blog. All rights reserved.

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WARNING Kentucky Residents – Lex18 News is a Liberal News Station

May 6th, 2011

I usually do not make my opinions known about certain things on Facebook.

But, today was different. I’m not sure if it is just where I am fed-up with Obama and this whole Osama Bin Laden “story” or if I have just come to the realization that I truly HATE liberals and their asinine beliefs.

Today, Lexington 18 news did a story on Obama and his visit/photo-op tour he is on – at FT. Cambell KY.

Those that know me, know I am very critical of the 0 playing the president. But, that is not what got me started. An obvious liberal-minded follower of Lex18 news on facebook commented, “I wonder where all the nay Sayers are?”

That is a direct flame-bait type comment but Lex18 felt like it was Okay to leave up all-the-while knowing that it would draw the attention of any anti-Obama facebook users. Of course I being the rebel conservative that I am commented, “Here I am – It was just another photo-op.” Lex18 news felt that my anti-Obama comment was some type of a “profanity or use disparaging or offensive terms when referring to other people posting” and banned me and removed my anti-Obama comment.

I guess Lex18 news forgot to look up the definition of Flam-bait. Well, that is alright because I have it right here:

Flame-bait is a message posted to a public Internet discussion group, such as a forum, newsgroup or mailing list, with the intent of provoking an angry response (a “flame”) or argument over a topic the poster often has no real interest in. While flaming can occur as a result of legitimate debates or grievances, flame-bait implies the intentional posting of inflammatory rhetoric or images.

As stated, flaming can stem from a variety of issues, including misunderstandings, frustration, and perceptions of unfairness. One motive (from trolls especially) is the desire for attention and for entertainment derived at the expense of others. Posted flame-bait can provide the poster with a controlled trigger-and-response setting in which to anonymously engage in conflicts and indulge in aggressive behavior without facing the consequences that such behavior might bring in a face-to-face encounter. In other instances, flame-bait may be used to reduce a forum’s use by angering the forum users.

Lex18 needs to post a message on their sites that they are a liberal news site that is biased against conservative views.

Well, it gets better! Instead of removing the flame type comment that started this controversial discussion, they decided to leave the anti-Bush comments on their facebook page, but removed my anti-Obama comments. After banning me from commenting, they added a provoking comment and also allowed another user to comment with another flame comment, and agreed with the flame-bait comment. Talk about being liberal biased.

I see profanity in the image below – but yet Lex18 did not remove that post – most likely because it came from a liberal minded user.

After Lex18 banned my personal account, I signed back in with my TDN account and posted the following message to Lex18 but – you guessed it – they banned my TDN account also.

It’s is a sad day in the U.S. when we don’t have the freedom to express our political views in an open forum without being censored because the public forum administrator is biased. I just thought that all my loyal readers here in Kentucky and all over the U.S. and the world should know that not only are the big news sites like CNN, MSNBC, NBC, ABC, etc., etc. all biased to report liberal news only – but little small town news stations like Lex18 are the same way. I urge all people who can view Lex18 news channel to go in search of another source for unbiased news – because you will be continued to be told only the left side of any story or news.

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