Saturday, July 30, 2005

Ready And Forward

From the Booker Rising blog comes a link to the St. Petersburg Times article about a reunion of Buffalo Soldiers. This reunion was for members and decendants of members of the all-black Army units during the period when these units were segregated.
[...] They were named by Cheyenne warriors in 1867 because they fought with the ferocity of a cornered buffalo. The nickname carried through the years, and members of the 9th & 10th (Horse) Cavalry Association have accepted it proudly. [...]
And proud they should be, fighting both for the United States, and against segregation and racism. Although no longer all-black units, the 9th and 10th still serve with distinction in Iraq today. I salute them all.

For those interested, here is some history of the units.

On June 28, 1866, an Act of Congress authorized the creation of six regiments of Black troops, two of cavalry and four of infantry. These troops went on to play a major role in the history of the West, as the "Buffalo Soldiers."

ninth.jpg(Image and Text Credits: The Buffalo Soldiers)

On September 21, 1866, the 9th Cavalry Regiment was activated at Greenville, Louisiana under command of Colonel Edward Hatch.



and the 10th Cavalry Regiment at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas under command of Colonel Benjamin Grierson.

And it turns out that the Buffalo Soldiers were unknowingly ahead of their time, as among their ranks was a female soldier. Read the story of Cathay Williams.

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Shhhhh... Be Vewy, Vewy Quiet...

The AP is reporting that former President Jimmy Carter, speaking at a Baptist World Alliance conference in Birmingham, England, said, among other things, that "...the detention of terror suspects at the Guantanamo Bay Naval base was an embarrassment and had given extremists an excuse to attack the United States. [...]"

Forgive me for any disrespect for a former President, but Jimmy Carter should stick to those things that he does well, like his work with Habitat for Humanity. When he dabbles in foreign affairs, he comes across as a lightweight, and is an embarrassment to the United States, and gives an excuse for thoughtful people the world over to laugh at his, and by extension, our, ineptness.

Come to think of it, even when he was President, he came across as a lightweight. As a peanut farmer he produced yearly crops of nuts, the only time during his life when he possessed any.

When someone desires to get rid of a President, the usual method is shooting (Lincoln, Garfield, and McKinley and Kennedy). Even failed attempts involved shooting, or explosives (Reagan, Bush the Elder, Bush the Younger). Carter? He was attacked by a rabbit! (Agent E. Fudd had this comment.) Ergo, Carter was, and is, a lightweight. (No Clinton here, his main adversary was an intern's headache.)

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Gun Control

Dick Meyer writing for CBS News, carries on the legendary tradition of Dan Rather. The subject? Gun Control, or rather The Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act. And what a load of tripe it is... his writing, not the bill. He only gets one conclusion right, and only half right at that:
[...] The easy answer is four seats - seats the Republicans gained in the 2004 elections. But those election returns took away more than Senate seats: they also took away backbone. [...]
He is correct about the lack of backbone, but incorrect in supposing that there was any to start with. The whole article is a whiney rehash of leftist crap.

This on top of Little Dickie Durbin's statements today yesterday on the Senate floor blaming the majority of gun-related deaths in Illinois on... get this... Mississippi!

What a pair of leftist tools.

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Friday, July 29, 2005

Kentucky Lab Shut Down

I'll bet these people were really pissed!

Newsflash: Rapes In Darfur!!

U.N.: Sudan Forces Commit Rape in Darfur

OK, OK, I was being sarcastic about the newsflash business.

Still no relief in sight.

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More On Assimilation

This is an interesting and thoughtful piece from the Washington Post concerning how one community struggles to cope with a large immigrant population. If you are at all concerned with immigration, and how best to deal with the influx, you should read this. If you have read my previous post, you know where I stand.

I would like to expand on one topic covered here, that of cultural change. I have been outspoken in my support of the process of immigrant assimilation into the mainstream American culture. One aspect that must be considered is that as immigrants acculturize, their native culture also affects the mainstream American culture. Quoting from the article above:
[...] "We are being really crushed by these Central American people," said Ruth Tatlock, 77, who has lived in Herndon for 31 years and supports the project. "It's a big influx in a small town. . . . But we have to be able to coexist somehow and do it on a decent level." [...]
[...] Every facet of life, from schools to neighborhoods to the town's downtown, has been affected by the influx, which was spurred by an abundance of affordable housing and good construction jobs (many of the immigrants helped raise the glass towers of the Dulles technology corridor nearby). [...]
Again, read the whole article. It raises questions that we all are being or will be confronted with in the future.

(Thanks to Free Republic for the original link)

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We Are The Borg... Or We Should Be

I have explained and complained a number of times about why I am for closed borders and against illegal immigration. The possibility of terrorists launching attacks via open borders is important, but pales when compared to the main problem, that being an inability or unwillingness to assimilate good immigrants, or of immigrants to be assimilated.

I firmly believe that the lifeblood of our country has consisted, and does now consist, of a steady flow of immigrants. At one time our country was known as a melting pot, where diverse immigrants came, settled, and became Americans, culturally. Other than appearance and possibly some family/religious traditions, from the second or third generation on they were indistinguishable from the population as a whole.

Of course there were exceptions. Some groups, usually but not always self-imposed, formed their own enclaves and maintained their old world languages and cultures. Many cities have areas known for a concentration for one or more of these groups. These enclaves served as comfort zones for newly arrived immigrants, allowing them to transition into the American culture at a rate that best suited them. This process of assimilation is what we are rapidly losing, sacrificed upon the altar of diversity and multiculturism.

Charles Krauthammer, writing in the Washington Post about the recent bombings in London, and the resultant random search screening processes instituted here because of them, touches on the assimilation of immigrants. He proposes that the assimilation process has failed in Britain, but has not failed here.
[...] These numbers, attesting to a massive failure of assimilation, are inconceivable in the United States, with its centuries of successful Americanization. This does not mean that there cannot be isolated cells of American Muslims -- or others, such as McVeigh types or antiabortion nuts -- who hate their country and want to attack it. But the massive, teeming suburbs of disaffected and alienated immigrants simply do not exist here. [...]
As much as I admire Mr. Krauthammer, and agree with his views, I must disagree with this. At the same time that the isolated cells he speaks of are expanding, and "... massive, teeming suburbs of disaffected and alienated immigrants..." are rapidly becoming a reality here, we as assimilated Americans are abrogating our responsibilities to encourage... demand!... that newer immigrants do the same. The demographics of Britain are rapidly becoming the demographics of the United States. We cannot allow this, and we cannot survive it.

Eric at Classical Values has a similar take:
[...] I don't care whether it's called "diversity," "multiculturalism," "identity politics," or the old fashioned word "segregation," it's become increasingly clear that this stuff is leading the country in the wrong direction. [...]
Agreed! (and he posted first, too!)

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2003 EL61 Precovery!

In the world of exploration and discovery, the practice of mounting expeditions to faraway locales is an established tradition. That same tradition applies also in the realm of astronomy, where most assets are directed at distant regions. Witness images such as this, titled Hubble Reveals the Heart of the Whirlpool Galaxy:

2001-10-a-web.jpg (Image Credit: NASA and The Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA))

Astronomers recently announced the discovery of a planet orbiting the star Gliese 876, closer to home, but still about 15 light-years distant.
gliese876_dss_1.jpg (Credit and Copyright: Digitized Sky Survey )

Explorers and adventurers frequently overlook exciting discoveries in their own back yards. Astronomers do also, with eyes and instruments focused on distant regions. But not always...

[...] Jose-Luis Ortiz, an astronomer at the Sierra Nevada Observatory in Spain, and colleagues discovered the object when they re-analysed observations they had made in 2003. Then, they scoured older archives and found the object in images dating back to 1955.

Based on these so-called "precoveries", they calculated the object's orbit and sent urgent emails asking people around the globe to observe the new find.

Amateur observers Salvador Sanchez, Reiner Stoss, and Jaime Nomen found it on Thursday using a 30-centimetre telescope in Mallorca, Spain. "I am not going to sleep tonight," said Stoss, a mechanical engineering student in Darmstadt, Germany. "To find an object bigger than Pluto - it's like the X Prize," he said, referring to the $10 million prize for private spaceflight won in 2004.

The observations were then verified by the International Astronomical Union's Minor Planet Center (MPC) in Cambridge, Massachusetts, US, which designated the object 2003 EL61. [...]
2003EL61.gif(Image credit: Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas
Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía

This follows the discovery of other bodies in the same region.
[...] On 15 March 2004, astronomers from Caltech, Gemini Observatory, and Yale University announced the discovery of the coldest, most distant object known to orbit the sun. The object was found at a distance 90 times greater than that from the sun to the earth -- about 3 times further than Pluto, the most distant known planet. [...]
This discovery has been named Sedena. Prior to that was the precovery of Quaoar. There is still much debate as to what exactly constitutes a planet (as an exercise, enter define: planet in a Google search and scan the definitions), and the status of these three has not been determined.

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Thursday, July 28, 2005

Agent 99, Your Shoe Is Ringing

When I first posted back on June 25 about the 13 CIA agents indicted by an Italian judge, and then on July 22 added another 6 CIA agents to the mix, I took the assertion that these were indeed CIA agents at face value. Until tonight, I'm thinking that there had actually been a total of 19 CIA agents involved. Well, now it's doubtful.

Victor L. Simpson of the AP reports, via Newsday, that "...the suspects used at least 40 Italian cell phones, some in their own names."
We're talking CIA. The Central Intelligence Agency. Spies, Incorporated. Spies R Us. Using their own names, in a foreign country, on an operation? I don't think so.

Or how about this?
[...] One has been identified by prosecutors as the former CIA station chief in Milan, Robert Seldon Lady, who owns a retirement home in wine country in Asti, near Turin. Though police didn't find Lady there when they raided the house, they did discover a list of hotels where U.S. government employees received discounts, including hotels where prosecutors contend the suspects stayed. [...]
Spy (wearing bright blue windbreaker with C.I.A. stenciled in yellow across the back) to desk clerk: Be sure to give me my CIA discount!

I don't know who these bozos were, but I'd now put money on them NOT being CIA. Read the whole article.
(note: modified to make Spys = Spies, I really need a spell checker!)
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Blogosphere's Most Wanted

UPDATE: (7/28/05 9:35 PM CDT) The North County Times reports that a judge has reduced the bail for Patricia Pena Urrea. She has been in jail since her arrest on June 13, charged with accessory to murder for her part in helping Fabian Urrea, her brother, elude police. Fabian is believed to have escaped to Mexico. See my two previous updates for my thoughts on the Mexico bit.

With family and children here in the States, sooner or later he's gonna come sneaking back across the border. I wonder what are the chances that he will be captured then. Probably slim, unfortunately.

(end update)
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UPDATE: (7/22/05 11:35 PM CDT) Hmmm, another hit from Mexico, this one from Guadalajara, which is as far as I can figure several hundred kilometers Southeast of Culiacan. Again, I may be overly sensitive to this, but I can see no reason for anyone in Mexico to be doing searches for fabian cayetano or, in this case, fabian cayetano urrea, unless they are family, friends, or Fabian himself. I wonder how common this name is?

(end update)
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UPDATE: (7/20/05 5:45 PM CDT) I don't know if I'm reading too much into this, or not, but...

Today I was looking at my blog stats, and noticed that I had had a visitor... from Mexico. The hostname was customer-cln-44-158.megared.net.mx, location Culiacan, MX. The only Culiacan that I know about is this one (sub-map C1), in Sinaloa State. The referring URL was a Google search for fabian cayetano. Now, this not being a border town, I immediately wondered just why anyone from so far South would be googling this guy, or even if it WAS this guy being googled. Very curious.

My suspicions are that this place is now harboring a fugitive suspected of murder, who is now checking to see how much heat is being applied to the case.

Also, when the visitor left, they went directly to Major K's blog.

(end update)
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(original posting)

My blog is still new, and has few visitors. Regardless, I am posting a picture here of Fabian Cayetano Urrea, wanted in connection with the murder of Spc. Jorge Estrada, on the off chance that one of those few will know his whereabouts.

Murrieta police are asking anyone with information about Fabian Urrea's whereabouts to call investigators at (951) 461-6358 or (951) 696-3615.

The Inland Southern California (free registration required) has the story. Some info also available at the North County Times.

Major K has a personal interest in this, as should we all. Let's put him up on the Blogosphere's Most Wanted and see what happens.

Update: (06/21/05 1:55 PM CDT) The hunt still goes on. More info and background here and here.

"He might be gone," [Steve] Bogan said. "He will not be forgotten."

Update: (06/25/05 10:26 PM CDT) thunder6 has a post about the unit memorial service for Spc. Jorge Estrada:

"SPC Estrada".

After a long moment the First Sergeant cried out again "SPC Estrada".

Again the call went unheeded.

The First Sergeant put forward one last call "SPC Jorge Estrada"

As the First Sergeant’s words faded out of existence our silent reverie was shattered by the angry crack of rifle fire. The firing party discharged three volleys, and as the last shots echoed off the barren walls the mournful cry of a lone bugle cut through the dying light. Every soldier in the Nightstalker Battalion stood and held one last, long salute as the baleful notes of "Taps" echoed off our troubled hearts.

Read the whole thing.

(Note: photo posted on my own dime.)
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Quick! Someone Draft Dick Cheny For Prez!

"The day Dick Cheney is going to run for president, I'll kill myself," she told The Hill newspaper. "All we need is one more liar." Helen Thomas
(Photo stolen from Bob Parks Black & Right)

RUN, Dick, RUN!

Thanks to World Net Daily for original link.

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Electric Geisha

Hmmm. I think I can detect a trend here.
Japanese scientists have unveiled the most human-looking robot yet devised - a "female" android called Repliee Q1.

She has flexible silicone for skin rather than hard plastic, and a number of sensors and motors to allow her to turn and react in a human-like manner.

She can flutter her eyelids and move her hands like a human. She even appears to breathe.

Photo Credit: BBC
Caption: Professor Ishiguru (r) stresses the importance of appearance
Powered prosthetics, power-assist rehabilitative gear, sweeping and mopping robots. Combine them all, design to look like a member of the opposite sex, sounds like a complete system to me. Wait! What's missing here? Oh, yeah, sex. But wait, there's more! Seems that the sex aspect has been covered too. CAUTION: This explicit link is NOT work safe, children safe, spousal safe, and maybe not even pet safe. Exercise caution before going HERE.

Throw in the ability to perform your online shopping, file your taxes, control your house/apartment, cook your meals... who needs people any more?

Update: I neglected to mention the interactional aspect of a robot. A good companion needs to be able to carry on an intelligent conversation, and think for themselves (within reason, of course - you don't want headaches at inappropriate times). I guess I should add But wait, there's more! here.
Most robots are programmed to make certain decisions, but are unable to think for themselves.

According to Prof [Mark] Lee, the project's purpose was to try to "unravel" the way in which the brain worked and to then build a robot that could "think" for itself.
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It's Not "Fart Science" Says Researcher

DAVIS, Calif. -- In a white, tent-like "bio-bubble" on a farm near Davis, eight pregnant Holsteins are eating, chewing and pooping -- for science. [...]
Interesting read, see if you can read the whole thing without at least smiling.

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Something Is Out Of Sequence Here

I thought the worms were supposed to wait their turn.
YONKERS, N.Y. -- A 63-year-old man died a day after emergency workers found him at his home in such squalid conditions that maggots were eating his flesh, a fire official said Wednesday. [...]
Read the whole thing... or not.

(Thanks to Free Republic for the link.)

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Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Nice Attitude, Nice Title

From M.E. Sprengelmeyer, Rocky Mountain News, comes this story about Rep. Tom Tancredo:
WASHINGTON - U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo plans to meet with some Muslim leaders and ignore others in the wake of his controversial remarks about Islamic holy sites. [...]
Congressman Tancredo has refused to retract his remarks concerning Islamic holy sites.
[he] suggested the United States could threaten to "take out" Muslim holy sites if radical Islamic terrorists launch nuclear attacks in U.S. cities. [...]
I strongly agree with his stand. One of the groups that he refused to meet with is CAIR, and that is the reason that I am posting this. My original link came from RantBurg, and was titled:
Tancredo bitch-slaps CAIR
My response: YES!! Let's see some more of this!

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And The Opinion Market Closed Up This Period

This is good news:
[...] The percentage of people holding a favorable impression of the United States increased in Indonesia (+23 points), Lebanon (+15), Pakistan (+2) and Jordan (+16). It also went up in such non-Muslim nations as France, Germany, Russia and India.

What accounts for this shift? The answer varies by country, but analysts point to waning public anger over the invasion of Iraq, gratitude for the massive U.S. tsunami relief effort and growing conviction that the U.S. is serious about promoting democracy.

There is also increasing aversion to America's enemies, even in the Islamic world. The Pew poll found that "nearly three-quarters of Moroccans and roughly half of those in Pakistan, Turkey and Indonesia see Islamic extremism as a threat to their countries." [...]
And from the LA Times, no less. Of course, they did throw this in at the end (emphasis mine):
[...] Of course, public opinion is fickle, and there is still a lot of hostility toward the U.S. out there.

Even a small minority of extremists can cause mayhem similar to the London bombings. But at least there are some signs that the battle for hearts and minds in the Islamic world is far from hopeless.
It is good news, though, published in Max Boot's commentary column rather than as news. We'll take what we can get. I wonder if this will appear anywhere in the NY Times, or the Washington Post? Well, will you look at this! WaPo came through!

Actually, this is really, really good news. It shows that bin Laden, scum that he is, was correct when he purportedly said When the people see a strong horse and a weak horse, they will support the strong horse. We are the strong horse. But there are many furlongs remaining, and the race is ours to lose.

Update here: Not once in either of these articles did I see the word 'squandered'. Things are indeed looking up!

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Something Obvious Missing From This Study

From LiveScience comes this article about a study done at the University of Alberta that "... found a connection between the length of the male index finger relative to the ring finger and the tendency to be aggressive".

From the abstract:
[...] These results are consistent with the hypothesis that testosterone has an organizational effect on adult physical aggression in men.
Nowhere did I see mentioned that the displayed length of the middle finger relative to the remaining fingers on a hand could be reliably used as an indicator of aggression.

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Say It Ain't So!!!

Remote-Controlled Robotic Hand Performs Breast Exams

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This Bodes Ill... For Me

Our Genes Make Us Like People Like Us

How alike are you and your husband or wife — or, you and your best friend? Probably more alike than you realize. A study of twins shows that people's spouses and best friends are much more similar to them than was previously recognized — about as close as brothers and sisters. The research also suggested that the preference for partners who are similar to us is partly due to our genes.
This article from the American Psychological Society is based on a report of research done on mates and friends of twins

So this explains why I have no friends!

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It's Not The Heat, It's The Humidity

No doubt about it, it's been hot, very hot, across most of the country. How hot is it? Good question.

Adding to the usual mix of reporting, where temperature, humidity and air movement are mentioned, usually combined into a 'feels like' Heat Index, Cornell University now brings Dew Point.
[...] Relative humidity expresses the drying power of the air and is a percentage -- the ratio of the air's moisture content to how much moisture the air could sustain at its temperature. Because of this dependence on temperature, the relative humidity varies throughout the day, from high readings in the morning to low readings at midafternoon.

The dew point expresses the day-to-day moisture content of the air in terms of a temperature -- that is the temperature at which condensation occurs. "Dew point can be visualized by considering a beverage container in a muggy room," said [Dan] Graybeal. "If the beverage is cooler than the dew point of the air in the room, condensation occurs on the container. It's a familiar summertime condition."
Locally, I can say that now matter how you characterize it, it's been hot. Out local Nashville Channel 2 Weather Blog is forecasting a break for us midweek. And wouldn't you know it? They're already discussing snowfall for this winter - will it, won't it, and how much?

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Less Is Better

And I'm gonna LOVE this!

Russian spammer found beaten to death

One billion email users under suspicion as police launch enquiry
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More Encryption

The Feds are just gonna !

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Is Hate A Hate Crime?

I think I could easily hate these guys!

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Another Demographic Bites The Dust

With the announcement that the Teamsters and SEIU will be leaving the AFL-CIO, the rock-solid union support of the Democrat Party may be busted. I certainly hope so. I'm not suggesting that this indicates a greater support of Republican and conservative candidates than before, but the door is open wider than it has been in... forever? characterizes the Democratic support by unions thusly:
[...] The foot soldiers of many political campaigns are union workers, and for decades they have been the province of the Democratic Party and the envy of Republicans. [...]
Democrats are scrambling to explain this defection.
[...] "Predictions of a political apocalypse for Democrats are premature," Jordan said. "We may see a newly energized or creative and more competitive environment within organized labor, and that's a good thing not just for labor but for Democrats." [...]
And might I add that it's a good thing for Republicans, too?

Others are playing CYA, offering differing reasons for the defection. From the National Legal and Policy Center:
[Ken] Boehm [Chairman of the National Legal and Policy Center (NLPC)] said, “The biggest problem facing organized labor today is not a disagreement over strategy. It is declining membership. Workers do not believe union bosses represent their interests. Corruption remains a huge problem in unions like the Teamsters, Laborers, SEIU and UNITE-HERE. Ironically, it is the most corrupt unions that are among the dissidents. It would be inaccurate to call them reformers.” [...]
Realistically, I would expect that this will result in a higher percentage of unioin votes for Republican candidates than could previously be expected. Not a majority, but like the black vote, and the Hispanic vote, Republicans and conservatives are drawing more and more support from these demographics.

(Thanks to Townhall.com for the original links.)

Update: Oops!

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Crazy King George

I was meandering around the 'net tonight, when I ran across this headline:

Doctors Poisoned Crazy King George, Study Finds

For an instant, I thought that I'd accidently stumbled into the Democratic Underground ('cause you know I don't go there on purpose, too much bile).

Turned out it was an article about England's King George III. Interesting reading, you should try it.

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Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Caution: Blogging Is Dangerous!

I Link, Therefore I am
by George Simpson, Monday, Apr 25, 2005 8:17 AM EST

A WEST NYACK, N.Y. MAN was found dead at his computer apparently the victim of trying to keep up with too many professional forums. Childress H. Wanamaker, 54, an account executive at a New York-based new media company, died of starvation according to the West Nyack coroner's office. Wanamaker's emaciated body was found by Loraine, his wife of 26 years, who told MediaPost she had been bringing her husband meals on plastic trays for weeks, but that he never took the time to eat them. [...]
Must. Blog. In. Moderation.
[...] In what must be a record, Wanamaker was linked into to over 15,250 other community members, many of whom he exchanged notes with daily. He also contributed to 375 blogs and was expected to start an online column about the impact of interactive communications on health, when he died. [...]
Thanks to Free Republic for the original link.

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Flying Dinosaurs

Update: Appears to be an almost flawless launch, from all that I see. This is great!

* * * * * *


UPDATE: 10:36 AM EDT 3 minutes to go. Heh, my heartrate is increasing!

UPDATE: 10:31 AM EDT 8 minutes to go. Looking good

UPDATE: 10:19 AM EDT 20 minutes to go.

UPDATE: 10:06 AM EDT Still a go, things looking good. 32 minutes to go.

I have had the honor an privilege to witness a launch many years ago, viewing from the causeway. If I remember correctly, that is the closest position that casual (as opposed to official and/or media) observers were allowed, and is about seven miles from the pad. The shuttle and launch assembly were visible, barely, to the naked eye. All in all, it was one of the most moving experiences of my life. Even at that distance, during the launch the air crackles with sound, and the ground vibrates. It was not just a visual and aural experience, it was infused with raw emotion, and brought tears to my eyes. I will miss this dinosaur when it is gone.

(end update)
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STS-114 is still set to go, at 10:39 Am EDT today!

(photo credit: KSC/NASA)

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Monday, July 25, 2005

Earn an 'A' In Recess

Bush May Make Recess Appointment of Bolton

WASHINGTON — Frustrated by Senate Democrats, the White House hinted Monday that President Bush may act soon to sidestep Congress and install embattled nominee John Bolton (search) as ambassador to the United Nations (search) on a temporary basis. [...]
Please do!

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Something Smells Fishy Here...

OK, the odor is not fish, but hogs. Anyone who has ever been downwind from a hog lot can instantly identify with the neighbors in this story. Or if you've been stuck on a two-lane road directly behind a semi carrying a load of hogs. They without a doubt have a distinctive aroma!

I've known people who have kept the smallish pot-bellied pigs as pets, but it seems to me that a pair of 300 pound hogs is going a bit overboard. And these were indoor pets! To name one of them Bacon is somehow diabolic, unless the other is named Ham.

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A Rising Bill Clinton

Seems the Clinton's star is again rising, with Hillary being named by the DLC to "direct a new initiative to define a party agenda for the 2006 and 2008 elections."

Oh, wait, Bill is rising again, also! Seems that recognition as this nation's first black president has gone to his head, as he now mulls over an offer from a Kenyan, Godwin Kipkemoi Chepkurgor, to exchange Chelsea in marriage for 40 goats and 20 cows. (Note: Due to Mr. Chepkurgor's name, his former position with the Kenyan governemnt, and the fact that he said that he "[] would have invited South African Anglican Archbishop Desmond Tutu to preside at the ceremony", I am assuming that he is a non-muslim black African. )

Mr. Chepkurgor also had praise for Hillary:
In the letter, Chepakurgor praised Clinton for his leadership style and Hillary for standing by her man "like an African woman." He also recommended that Clinton retire to Africa.
This could turn into a windfall for Bill, as we remember the quote from Uncle Jimbo:
For Children- A Woman
For Pleasure- A Boy
For Ecstacy- A Goat"
LOL, Bill would be in Hog Heaven.

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UPDATE: (7/27/05 2:00 PM CDT) Gilbert Gaedcke and Peter Frank, the boy that spotted him, are on FNC as we speak Nothing new as to facts, just the touchy feelie aspects of the story. My original assessment still stands: How is it possible that this guy couldn't walk out?

(end update)
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This is a puzzling story. From Newsday comes this report of an "experienced hiker" who became lost, and remained so for five days, until discovered by a boy on a tour helicopter ride. Unfortunately, incidents akin to this happen frequently, even to experienced people. But what puzzles me is why a person could not manage to walk/climb out of an area so small.

WAIMEA, Hawaii -- A hiker lost for five days in a lava field near a volcano says he survived by drinking water he squeezed from moss in a mostly barren landscape. Gilbert Dewey Gaedcke III, 41, was rescued Friday afternoon after a teenager on a helicopter tour spotted him stumbling across the rocky lava, trying to attract attention with a mirror from his camera.

Realizing that although this is rugged, and probably unfamiliar, terrain, the hiker still was not many miles from 'civilization' in any direction.

(map credit: National Park Service)

Regardless of the size of the area, an experienced hiker surely had some foreknowledge of the island, even if the minimal information provided by the NPS.

The reason this is puzzling to me is that I had a somewhat similar experience once, long ago. My brother and I (ages 10 and 13 at the time) were taking a hike along a beach. The destination was approximately 10 miles away. About halfway through, we encountered a headland that we could not get around, and decided to cut overland to the main highway, which was about two miles inland at that point. After a couple of hours of rough going we decided that we were 'lost'. Even so, we knew that in one direction lay the highway, and in the opposite was the Pacific Ocean, and our 'rescue' depended only on persistence and a straight heading.

My point is that any '"experienced hiker" should have been able to find their way out.

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Italian Tsunami?

Why, just yesterday I was pondering the inexplicable manner in which tsunami effects occured in pasta, as I broke a handful of spaghetti into a pot of boiling water.
When dry spaghetti snaps, it usually breaks into several fragments, not just two equal pieces. [...]
Kudos to EurekAlert, for tonight I will sleep peacefully...

(The link to the upcoming original publication is only available to American Physical Society members, which I am not.)

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