Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Elected officials Demonstrating Candor
Be Afraid, Very Afraid...

Realism provides only amoral observation, while Absurdism rejects even the possibility of debate.
Frances Babbage, playwright, "Augusto Boal"

This is unbelievable.

You can find the entire article at Huffington Post

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


“Thinking is more interesting than knowing, but less interesting than looking”
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832), playwright, poet

A man in sober meditation battling with a powerful internal struggle...

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Stylish Ants

“Ants are so much like human beings as to be an embarrassment. They farm fungi, raise aphids as livestock, launch armies into war, use chemical sprays to alarm and confuse enemies, capture slaves, engage in child labor, exchange information ceaselessly. They do everything but watch television.”
Lewis Thomas (1913-1993), physician and writer

Take a close look at the ant just left of center (you have to click on the photo) and you can see it has a faux Mohawk. I could have come a bit closer, but the persistent creatures started for my shoes.

Monday, July 20, 2009

To The Moon...

Dick Gordon of Apollo 12 was asked what did we learn from going to the moon. He replied, "we discovered the Earth.

Forty years ago today, Apollo 11 was the first manned mission to land on the Moon. It was the fifth human spaceflight of Project Apollo and the third human voyage to the Moon.

Launched on July 16, 1969, it carried Mission Commander Neil Alden Armstrong, Command Module Pilot Michael Collins, and Lunar Module Pilot Edwin Eugene 'Buzz' Aldrin, Jr.

On July 20, Armstrong and Aldrin became the first humans to walk on the Moon, while Collins orbited above.

In this July 1969 file photo, most of Africa and portions of Europe and Asia can be seen in this spectacular photograph taken from the Apollo 11 spacecraft during its translunar coast toward the moon, during the month of July, 1969. Apollo 11 was already about 98,000 nautical miles from earth when this picture was made. (AP-Photo/NASA, file) moon0714a

1. The Apollo’s Saturn rockets were packed with enough fuel to throw 100-pound shrapnel three miles, and NASA couldn’t rule out the possibility that they might explode on takeoff. NASA seated its VIP spectators three and a half miles from the launchpad.

2. The Apollo computers had less processing power than a cellphone.

3. Drinking water was a fuel-cell by-product, but Apollo 11’s hydrogen-gas filters didn’t work, making every drink bubbly. Urinating and defecating in zero gravity, meanwhile, had not been figured out; the latter was so troublesome that at least one astronaut spent his entire mission on an anti-diarrhea drug to avoid it.

4. When Apollo 11’s lunar lander, the Eagle, separated from the orbiter, the cabin wasn’t fully depressurized, resulting in a burst of gas equivalent to popping a champagne cork. It threw the module’s landing four miles off-target.

5. Pilot Neil Armstrong nearly ran out of fuel landing the Eagle, and many at mission control worried he might crash. Apollo engineer Milton Silveira, however, was relieved: His tests had shown that there was a small chance the exhaust could shoot back into the rocket as it landed and ignite the remaining propellant.

6. The "one small step for man" wasn’t actually that small. Armstrong set the ship down so gently that its shock absorbers didn’t compress. He had to hop 3.5 feet from the Eagle’s ladder to the surface.

7. When Buzz Aldrin joined Armstrong on the surface, he had to make sure not to lock the Eagle's door because there was no outer handle.

8. The toughest moonwalk task? Planting the flag. NASA’s studies suggested that the lunar soil was soft, but Armstrong and Aldrin found the surface to be a thin wisp of dust over hard rock. They managed to drive the flagpole a few inches into the ground and film it for broadcast, and then took care not to accidentally knock it over.

9. The flag was made by Sears, but NASA refused to acknowledge this because they didn’t want "another Tang."

10. The inner bladder of the space suits—the airtight liner that keeps the astronaut’s body under Earth-like pressure—and the ship’s computer’s ROM chips were handmade by teams of “little old ladies.”

Craig Nelson uncovered these facts in various NASA archives while researching his new book, Rocket Men (Viking; $28).

Sunday, July 19, 2009

A Chair of One's Own

“The last stroke of midnight dies.
All day in the one chair
From dream to dream and rhyme to rhyme I have ranged
In rambling talk with an image of air:
Vague memories, nothing but memories.”
William Butler Yeats (1865-1939), poet, writer

Upon closer inspection, it's a bit tattered and torn and sadly symbolic of how society treats its elderly -- tossed aside and placed out of the way...

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Censorship through Kindle
and Other Devices

Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested: that is, some books are to be read only in parts, others to be read, but not curiously, and some few to be read wholly, and with diligence and attention.
Francis Bacon (1561-1626), philosopher, statesman, scientist, lawyer, jurist, and author.

The joys of reading and the agony of censorship, which almost half the population seems to be okay with, can be experienced by readers who own a Kindle.

If you had downloaded George Orwell’s famous novels “1984” and “Animal Farm” you no longer have them on your Kindle because the publisher decided it did not want to give the rights to Kindle, so Amazon.com used its wireless connection to each Kindle to delete copies on the owners' Kindles and refunded their money.

If you have decided to call your friends on your iPhone or other network tethered devices you need not feel so superior.

Daughter sent THIS to me and you too should read it and be aware:

"tethered appliances," that is, appliances like the Kindle and the iPhone that feature a combination of hardware and software services connected by a network. The manufacturer of the tethered appliance can easily discover what consumers are doing with the product, can restrict what end-users do with the hardware, and can alert the features of the product by remote control. It simultaneously offers the possibility of privacy invasions and retroactive alterations of features. The Kindle story shows that it also offers the possibility of private censorship.

Friday, July 17, 2009

RIP Walter Cronkite

Objective journalism and an opinion column are about as similar as the Bible and Playboy magazine.
Walter Cronkite (1916-2009) journalist

I am delighted that I was able to see Walter Cronkite live a couple of years ago where he was interviewed by Anderson Cooper.

All the news reports on Cronkite tonight show how far news delivery has declined, which also includes understanding by viewers.

Sadly, that's the way it was and is today.

The post I wrote about seeing Cronkite: My Post

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Mel Gibson to Star in Jodie Foster's Beaver

It's the most disturbing headline I've seen in a while. Full story here, but you've already read the best part. Trust me.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Happy Birthday to My Wife

You are the love of my life -- and I am happy to be celebrating another Bastille Day with you.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Please Act Now!!

If you have an ounce of charitable feelings, please I deplore you to support "Buy One Anyway." Without these people we would have never known about:
  • Watergate
  • No stinkin' WMDs in Iraq
  • Brownie doing a heck of a job
  • That Cheney was holding secret meetings with energy company CEOs
  • That Rumfeld used scripture to duped "W" moving forward with bad military choices
  • That $9 billion allotted for Iraqi reconstruction went up in smoke
Please watch this video and act generously.

Tip of the hat to On The Mark for pointing this out.