Tuesday, April 30, 2013

The "let's go back to the 1950's" podcast of the day

FLP podcast:

Michael Pollan | Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation
Recorded 4/26/2013
Listen to MP3 audio

For more than 25 years, Michael Pollan has pinpointed the intersections of nature and culture.... In Cooked, he argues that our taking back control of cooking is a critical ingredient for a sustainable food system.
Translation: cook fresh food from scratch.

yes, we do that here in the Philippines, because we have a full time cook.

in the US, I cooked supper after an 8-10 hour shift, and bought groceries once a week. No way I would cook from scratch....

TGFFFF: Thank God for Frozen French Fries (and corn dogs)....

Family news

I am still recovering from jet lag, and just woke up. It's very hot (the hot season before the monsoon starts in early June) so we stay in the air conditioned bedroom most of the daytime anyway. The city fiesta is going on, so lots of visitors. The parade was this afternoon. In the old days, Lolo and the other World War II vets marched in the parade, and the out of town guys would stay here, and they would drink and play cards and have a good time. Now they all are either too frail to travel that far or have passed away. Sigh. Our small dog was found dead in the garden: Probably heat stroke. he was not old and was okay in the morning, but has long hair (which I usually cut, but hadn't because I had been out of town) and it is 90plus degrees out. Sigh. Older and larger dogs are okay, except for ticks. They also hadn't been bathed since I left so we went to work cleaning them up. Yuck.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Before the Kilns

A story of the house of CS Lewis before he and his brother bought the Kilns.

and a video of his homes.

The little girl who inspired Lucy


In a yawning, book-lined drawing room in Marylebone, central London, I am left to browse a file of letters written during the war years by CS Lewis to "My dear June". The "June" referred to is Jill Freud, the now 78-year-old wife of Sir Clement, who has disappeared into the kitchen to make a pot of tea.
In 1944, she was June Flewett, a London convent girl who had been evacuated to Lewis's house in Oxford to escape the Blitz. She was also the inspiration for Lucy Pevensie, the girl who walks through the wardrobe full of fur coats and into the snowflakes of Narnia.
I was actually looking up Mrs. Moore, the mysterious adopted "mother" and or lover of the young CS Lewis.

Lots of people merely quote Warren's acidic view of Mrs. Moore, but he didn't move in until 15 years after the affair started, and presumably she was in the early stages of Alzheimer's, with a mild paranoia/rigidity of customs starting.

I have a book that includes a short essay by Lewis' gardener, who describes her as kind and one who all the hobos knew they could find a bit to eat, even in the early days when they were poor.

So although the nasty see her portrayed as the picky mother of Screwtape Letters, others point out she is the woman in the Great Divorce, who was hated by her husband but who was a mother to all those around her.


how to make ice cream


Saturday, April 27, 2013

Friday, April 26, 2013

Family news

I just got back from the US: the trip took 36 hours if you include time in the airports and time to drive to and from the airports.

Blogging may resume when I recover from jet lag.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Family news

Robin and Madeline are up visiting. I have almost adjusted to the US time, and now fly back in two days and will have to readjust again.

Monday, April 22, 2013

bookmarked for later perusal

Funeral is over, I am still suffering from time shift problems (delayed jet lag) so have trouble concentrating despite the nice brewed coffee one can get in the USA...

. Robin is coming tomorrow with CousinMaddie and gifts...will then decide if I need a new suitcase to pack them all.

so I am bookmarking link

bookmarked for later watching: Mgt Thatcher's funeral service.

AndrewMalcolm's take here.


 DonaldSensing puts on his pastor's hat and analyzes the resurrection and the anti rational aspects of scientism.

full rant moved to rantblog.

The world has stopped getting warm over the last few years, but the latest WAGD article insists the late 20th century is the warmest the earth has been in the last 1400 years.

in our prayers: Sichuan earthquake victims.

The "art bell was right" headline of the day:

Researchers use Moore's Law to calculate that life began before Earth existed

or maybe they need to throw out that "law" as being wrong.

LegalInsurrectionBlog tries to detangle all the information/misinformation on the Boston terrorists.

and ironically, this report on ICU nurses caring for the casulaties has this ironic factoid:
She is angry and doesn't think she could take care of Tsarnaev, who is a patient at another hospital, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center: "I don't have any words for him."

 So he is cared for in a hospital with Methodist and Jewish roots.

AlJazeerah's take here. 
ethnic slurs are not new in America.
Did I ever tell you the story of how the cops questioned my grandfather for singing German folksongs during World War I?


Brush up your Shakespeare

Random Shakespearean Insulter webpage:

why post ordinary F words to curse people in the comments?
Copy an insult from the master himself!


the Bard
Thou odiferous fly-bitten foot-licker!

Thou misbegotten toad-spotted clack-dish!

I scorn you, scurvy companion. What, you poor, base, rascally, cheating, lack-linen mate! Away, you moldy rogue, away!

Thou currish malmsey-nosed fustilarian!

Factoid of the day

WTF factoid from StrategyPage:

from an article on how sanctions are hurting Iran:
Another American move, one that the Iranians did not expect, is also hurting. This is the growing production of gas and oil from shale deposits in the United States. Americans quietly perfected the technology to make this work and now oil and gas importers worldwide have vast new local sources. This is driving down the price of oil and adding to the hurt felt inside Iran. 

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Insomnia download of the day

Glenn Gould playing the Goldberg variations.

I've been trying to find this on line for years. Quick: before the copyright cops find it's there.

Art and craft lesson of the day

Manga artist MarkCrilley has a long line of "how to draw" videos on youtube.

Musical interlude of the day


family news

From David's funeral
Family can get the link to the photos I took at the funeral if they email me.
May flights of angels lead you on your way

May flights of angels lead you on your way
to paradise and heavens eternal day!
May martyrs greet you after deaths’ dark night
and bid you enter into Zion’s light!
May choirs of angels sing you to your rest
with once poor Lazarus, now forever blest.69

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Stuff below the fold

While Boston was on lock down and in mourning, the death toll in West Texas went up,the Mississippi is threatening to flood (normal every spring) and a lot of people were killed in a Chinese earthquake.
no Filipinos so far reported hurt in Boston, but one victim was a Chinese graduate student.
Dustbury gets his five minutes of fame in the local paper. About time...

The PhilInquirer (which tends to be socialist) discusses the pope reforming the church: from "navel gazing" clericalism to making lay people holy. Sounds about right. The clergy "serve the poor", but too often as elites helping "the poor", while living comfortably, not like St Francis as one of them...
 there is more sociology/anthropology/cross cultural changes behind what he is doing, but I'm too busy to try to summarize it. But let's just say the PCa types will be left behind evolving to a higher power while the Church goes back to basics.

related item:
and Father Z notes even the NCR figures that nuns who said they planned to move "beyond Jesus" into a post modern gobblygook new ageism were asking for a comeuppance....

In case you want to say "HI"-
A smartphone app that warns about incoming meteors is just one practical application that could be developed this weekend.

Read more here: http://blogs.herald.com/dave_barrys_blog/2013/04/about-damn-time.html#storylink=cpy

via Dave Barry.

Family news

Funeral is tomorrow. I had to buy a dress (I bought my only dress with me, but it was Navy blue).

Up in the middle of the night thanks to jet lag: it's afternoon in the Philippines.

The cousins wrote on Facebook they got here, but I was asleep last evening and don't know if they called here or not.

Kris and Alice holding out okay.

cat item of the day

Friday, April 19, 2013


Boston manhunt is going on...all over the news here.

UKMail has an in depth article on Waco explosion, including pointing out that some killed were volunteer firemen, and that the plant hadn't been inspected for years...


Thursday, April 18, 2013

Family News

I just flew to the US...the funeral is Saturday, and I am staying with Kris and her daughter.
The cousins might drive up from Philly and Robin is talking about driving up the day after the funeral for a visit and to give me gifts to take home to the Philippines with me.
I still have jet lag. 30 hours travel between airplanes and car trips to and from airports.
I won't be blogging much until I get home.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Going on hiatus

I have had a death in my family so won't be blogging for awhile. Family can contact me by email or facebook.

Drug pusher?

From ABC:

a sympathetic article about the poor employees paid 7 dollars an hour who couldn't find any other work and that justified their cutting the necks of live newborns.

Includes this ironic paragraph:
However, O'Neill, like many others, stayed on at the clinic until a February 2010 drug raid, which was spawned by Gosnell's high-volume distribution of OxyContin and other painkillers.

This finally hit CNNI today, and the anchor, Cooper, wasn't upset about the live birth killings or the malpractice against the moms, but did think that maybe the state should have investigated the clinic as the law was supposed to do.

Apparently they did, but only the FBI and that was about narcotics, not killing babies or women.

Where are the reports from the local ER's about this? 

And where was the PA Medical society in all of this?At least one ex employee said she reported him...

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Maria Tall Chief

Ballerina MariaTallchief has died.

video link

her family came from one area of Oklahoma where I worked...

Tulsa has the "Five Moons" sculptures to honor the five local Ballerinas, including Maria and her sister.

The title for the sculptures comes from “The Four Moons,” a ballet that was created for the Oklahoma Indian Ballerina Festival in 1967. This ballet, set to music by the Oklahoma native Louis Ballard, was made for four solos that evoked each dancer’s tribal heritage — Osage for the Tallchief sisters, Shawnee for Larkin, Cherokee for Chouteau and Choctaw for Hightower.

Wikipedia article here.

more about the ballerinas at ReflectionsInVerse Blog.

Ancient wine and beer


Friday, April 12, 2013

the WTF headline of the day

Sex Pistol Johnny Rotten attacks hate mobs celebrating Baroness Thatcher's death as 'loathsome' and calls for respect

the real irony is that those "celebrating" are too young to remember her, and only know the negative press meme, which says a lot about the UK...

only the non PC remember her as part of the trio who refused to go along with the idea that communism was good and would bury the west.

Religion Lesson for today

How computers get it wrong

logic and computers are seen as being accurate, but small "rounding off" of numbers can lead to huge inaccuracies.
Think of it as the butterfly effect problem.

video here.



it's not just BPA...


Smaug is a red dragon in the Hobbit...but I don't know if the film will show him that color.

At the same time, the favorite hobbit tavern is the "green dragon".

What's the difference?

Dranconika discusses it here:
Red dragons are greedy and covetous, and obsessed with increasing their treasure hoards. They live in warm habitats, such as volcanoes or tropical islands. The red dragon's domain is is the mountain and the island....
The green dragon is a belligerent creature and master of intrigue, politics, and backbiting. He is cruel. He prefers forests—the older and bigger the trees, the better. Instead of being overtly aggressive, he prefers to concoct elaborat schemes to gain power or wealth with as little effort as possible ...
in contrast, the Chinese dragon is more worm like, lives in rivers/the ocean, and helps protect people.

Stories below the fold

StrategyPage has the latest on how China is stealing traditional fishing grounds (and eventually their petroleum supply) from the Philippines.

They also note why the Christian half of Nigeria isn't too keen on giving amnesty to their local Islamicist terrorists:

Michael Ledeen at PJMedia wrote that North Korea's threats were a proxy for Iran's bomb.
 I figured he was paranoic,, but StrategyPage notes the same thing:

April 11, 2013: Iran is paying close to North Korea’s recent effort to threaten the world into submission via the threat of using primitive (and recently developed) nuclear weapons. The results of this are not in yet, but if the North Korean nuclear intimidation fails Iran would be more willing to abandon their nuclear ambitions.  ...
Reuter's headline says "Cathedral clash", but what happened was a military type attack on peaceful Christian worshipers, not a fight between two thuggish groups.
UKIndependent has more:

ah, but the Egyptian president's spokesman says the Christians started it, but the officials quickly backed off from this claim, which seemed to send an okay for more attacks by extremists.

and it doesn't help when the police take the side of those attackers or that the NYTimes says Muslims also were attending the funeral service and were complaining at the government's failure to stop attacks.

So it is only part of a power grab by the Islamicists, never mind that the economy is tanking and tourists and their money is keeping away.


There isn't much coverage of the murders of black teenagers etc. but with the gun control debate going on, Ebony analyzes the figures for you and has an ongoing discussion there of the problem.

The "good" news"? The murder rate is actually 50percent lower than in 1991...

the InOurTime podcast this week is about the Amazons.

Andrew Cusack asks: What do you do with day old Haggis?

Voila: add tomatos sauce and put it over noodles: linguine alla scozzese.

Remembering the Sutton Hoo burial.
More about Germanic/Viking ship burials at Wikipedia.
including this factoid:
A unique eye-witness account of a 10th-century ship burial among the Volga Vikings is given by Arab traveller Ibn Fadlan

Michael Wood's series, In Search of the Dark Ages, can be watched on Youtube.
and the fictional blending of Ibn Fadlan with Beowulf was made into a B movie The Thirteenth Warrior.

The late Father Kapaun was given the Medal of Honor...more HERE.

The citation continues: "Shortly after his capture, Chaplain Kapaun bravely pushed aside an enemy soldier preparing to execute a comrade, thus saving a life and inspiring all those present to remain and fight the enemy until captured."
After their capture, Kapaun and wounded soldiers able to walk were marched to a prison camp near Pyoktong, just south of the Yalu River in North Korea.
During the march and his time at the camp, Kapaun helped carry wounded men, bathed them and washed their clothes, stole food for his fellow prisoners and held secret prayer services in defiance of the Communist camp officials.
Could you be shot by a defective airbag?


Don't mess with Smaug Viet Nam's giant dragon bridge: 

via DaveBarry:

Thursday, April 11, 2013

The "Don't panic" posts of the week

NatGeo says: it's too early to panic about bird flu.
One headline, above a report by a respected journalist, asked: "Is This a Pandemic Being Born?" It may be, or not. But bear in mind that any disease outbreak that spreads globally, whether or not it causes millions of deaths, is by definition a pandemic.
so there: it's not a pandemic yet. Wait until a few million folks die, and THEN panic...

The "What could go wrong" post of the week:

 NASA Announces Plan for Capturing Asteroid

NASA wants to identify an interesting asteroid flying around deep space, figure out a way to capture the spinning and hard-to-grab orb, nudge it into our planetary region and then set it into orbit around the moon, the agency announced Wednesday.


Stories under the fold

An exhibitionist wants to be Mayor of New York.

But AnneAlthouse asks the question no one else seems to be wondering: Where does he get all his money?

Persian Paradox wrote that when visiting Pakistan she found a lot of people upset at the civilians there killed by US drone attacks.
Well, most of them ARE the bad guys (in Texas parlience, they "needed kiling").
But now some reports suggest that some were only "suspects" and not verified bad guys.

(headsup Instapundit).

of course, why worry: they'll never be used on you...
UhOh: US Gov't testing drones in Oklahoma.

PETA using drones to stop hunters.

WTOP series on drones HERE.

of course, if you were listening to C2C, you'd know this already

and yes, despite PNoy and the Yanks denying it, drones have been used here in the Philippines.
But because of the libel law the article has to quote a NYTimes article that reports it.
a report on using the Philippines as a drone base can be found on the Brookings instistution website.

however, the Brookings site makes the Moros victims, not noting they are late arrivals and pirates who raided the Philippines killing and enslaving them...

DVT analysis suggests using heparin to stop deep vein thrombosis, based on a bunch of studies whose results were pooled together.
Like all metanalyses, unless you have time to check you don't know if the studies they used were actually valid...and heparin does work: it is already used in patients, but using it for everyone would result in a lot of side effects not seen in smaller studies.

Similarly, this study showing the elderly got "risky" drugs doesn't mention what were the risky
drugs, or if they were used because they were cheaper than the newer more expensive medicines.
But most of the list are "psychotrophic" medicines:

So if I give an elderly lady with Alzheimer's a psychotrophic medicine so her shouting/temper tantrums are controlled so to put her to sleep at night so she doesn't wander off, then she can stay at home with family, she is getting a "risky drug". Heh. We know that. It's just that we figure the alternative is worse:

another day, another earthquake: No, not here.



Books etc around the net

NoStarchPress has released a book on how to hack the XBox

as a protest for the way MIT and the authorities hounded Aaron Schwartz to his death.

Even though the smuggling of Libyan arms to Syria and the presence of a lot of spooks in the area was a poorly kept secret, the coverup goes on. I mean there are reports that even Hillary wasn't aware of what was going on.

But the fact that they were warned that an attack was coming is known to the gaming community, since they were given a headsup by Sean Smith...so the "story" of the "spontaneous" attack of those protesting a movie was a lie that they got away with. I always wondered why vilerat told his fellow gamers goodbye, but didn't bother to warn the State Department.
Now, his mother says: He did.
He did tell them, ahead of time, he typed it into his little typewriter over there, that they were going to be attacked, ‘please they needed more security,’ and they were ignored. And I don’t appreciate everybody going to bed and going to sleep and not taking care of the guys that they put in harm’s way, one of them being my son. 
why the coverup? To get reelected...even Candy Crowley cooperated by shutting up Romney when he dared to question the fake scenerio.
And, by the way, where is the guy who made the fake porn movie who is now in jail? ACLU? Anyone?


Can the states nullify a federal law?
Nullification, a legal theory that has never been upheld by the Supreme Court, is the idea that the states can declare null and void any federal law that they deem unconstitutional. Professor Lindsay Robertson discusses the origin of the theory in the 1830′s, the constitutional questions it raises, and the ways it contributed to the Civil War. 

Discussion at OU's course on the constitution.

Fordham has some of their books for download.

One, on using technology in developmentally challenged areas, seems interesting.

another, on dance's imporance in religious studies, seems to be a bit absurd to me.

One of our African nuns once quipped to me that she hadn't had a lot of leisure time "since I became Catholic": because of the stress of Catholicism that serving the poor was more important to prayer. Come to think of it, that nun later left her active order to join a contemplative one...

However, Ruby dances with the pre teen girls at her Pentecostal church, and black churches (including those in Africa) dance with joy before the Lord spontaneously....
but alas for American Catholics it means have to put up with fat middle aged nuns doing a "Pricilla" during mass...

On the other hand, the sufis and most 4 year olds know that twirling will make you "high" and like other methods to silence the busy mind will let you feel either your ego, your subconscious, or the deity in the midst of our souls.

Foods that will win the war and how to cook them.

one of several books written during World War I on how to conserve food at Online Books.

  1--buy it with thought
  2--cook it with care
  3--serve just enough
  4--save what will keep
  5--eat what would spoil
  6--home-grown is best
It includes a lot of recipes.Like the "victory gardens" of World War II, or the frugal food storage of many of the LDS church, a lot of the "trendy" lessons of living thriftily were well known to their elders or neighbors.

a food related podcast from FLP:
Mary Roach | Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal
Recorded 4/4/2013
Listen to MP3 audio

With wit and unflagging curiosity, Mary Roach has explored the posthumous human body (Stiff), ectoplasm and the afterlife (Spook), sex (Bonk), and the scientific oddities of space travel (Packing for Mars). “One of those rare writers who can tackle the most obscure unpleasantness and distill the data into a hilarious and informative package,” according to the San Francisco Chronicle, Roach probes the creepy aspects of life we all wonder about but are usually too polite to mention. Her new book Gulp is an exploration of human digestion.    
 A free sociology textbook.

more here...
Instapundit keeps talking about a revolution in college education

and lots of college courses on line, either as podcasts or on ITunesU or Youtube. and of course Khan academy.
and don't forget the Tolkien professor!

and if you have trouble sleeping: Just play one of these lovely books to bore you to sleep:

The History of England by David Hume.

Areopagitica (Version 2) by Milton, John

or try the exciting series

Conan and the Queen of the Black Coast.
Conan finally meets his match in Belit, the fierce, bloodthirsty and scantily clad pirate Queen. She also is unable to resist the huge, blue eyed, iron thewed barbarian who literally sweeps her off her feet.


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Stuff around the blogs

Persian paradox has a post about the traditionalist reformers trying to peacefully change the government via elections without having that country slip into a civil war.

Milgram revisited: If you are handed a screaming baby, what would you do?

Related item:first they came for the babies, now they pressure the cripples who need tube feeding due to a stomach problem, telling them to accept the alternative, ..it's about cost control, of course...but no one except the BMJ wants to admit it.

Related item: an editorial on the "five minutes of hate" against the autistic
caused by the Sandy Hook shootings.

A small US ship got caught on a reef off of Palawan and was finally removed last week.
But now a Chinese "fishing boat" got caught on the reef, meaning they were poaching...or maybe spying.

Margaret Thatcher helped invent soft serve ice cream.

By the way, "we" won the Iraq war...even the Iraqi Prime minister writing in the WAPost says so.

more HERE.
The Anchoress points out Jesus did define marriage

“But at the beginning of creation God ‘made them male and female.’[a] ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife,[b] and the two will become one flesh.’[c] So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

Uncle Orson asks the real question on whether or not to ban violent video games:

Do we ban the games that may contribute to violent tendencies in our socially-rejected kids? Or should we start by banning the games played by the socially-powerful kids -- the hazers and the bullies -- whose aggressive and violent attitudes turn those geeky kids into social outcasts, and make their lives a living hell every single day?
related item: How to end bullying? Talk about it...a lot.

Ancient standard has an article on the Cedars of Lebanon 
The size and strength of the cedars were what made these trees valued above any other tree wood in antiquity—it smelled great, grew straight (perfect for building things with!) and its strength was unmat.ched. If you think West coast redwoods are tall and strong, they have nothing on the cedars of Lebanon.
It’s thought by many historians that access to this critical resource is what helped put the Phoenicians “on the map”, so to speak, of ancient history. Demand for this particular cedar wood grew very rapidly once others learned about it, especially from Egypt and Mesopotamia where—let’s face it—there were very few trees at all.
Don't blame me: I was born that way:

Coach potatoes can't help it: i'ts in their DNA

Latest pseudo science: Potato chips are addictive.

Yeah. That's why  we have an epidemic of violent fat ladies robbing stores to get money to feed their habit.

The Franklin expedition to find the North West passage resulted in a disaster...some said it was scurvy, others claimed they died from hypervitaminosis A from eating polar bear liver, and still others blamed it on the high lead content of the newfangled canned goods they carried.

Archeology now reports:
Martin says that the lead levels in the bones were too high to blame on the expedition’s stores. “The lead distribution is essentially uniform as might be expected from lifetime lead ingestion. There is no evidence for a sudden massive increase in lead during the latter part of any individual’s life,” he said.
Related item: a discussion of Franklin, and the similarly disastrous Jeannette expedition.


Does ESPN cover this, or is it on the Sci Fi channel?

The Quidditch World Cup

more HERE.


Tuesday, April 09, 2013

Herodotus in the news

Herodotus, with the help of Frank Miller, is again making headlines and giving ideas to Hollywood.

Based on Frank Miller's upcoming graphic novel "Xerxes" and told in the breathtaking visual style of the blockbuster 300, this new chapter of the epic saga takes the action to a fresh battlefield—on the sea—as Greek general Themistokles (Sullivan Stapleton) attempts to unite all of Greece by leading the charge that will change the course of the war. 300: Rise of an Empire pits Themistokles against the massive invading Persian forces led by mortal-turned-god Xerxes (Rodrigo Santoro), and Artemesia (Eva Green), vengeful commander of the Persian navy.
so with all the Spartans dead, who will be in this movie?link 

 300: Rise of An Empire follows the first film's primary villain Xerxes I of Persia as he battles other Greek cities like Themistocles, Salamis and Marathon. With all of the original 300 dying in the first movie, the heroes of this film will be entirely new, with much of the movie said to focus on the villainous Xerxes and his female battle commander Artemisia, played by Bond girl Eva Green.

luckily for us, Hollywood will giver her more pulcritude.

Yes, the Persians love to cite her as evidence that they had equality of women...but actually, she was Greek ruling a city founded and peopled by Greeks, and the widow of a tyrant who had bowed to the Persians to become one of their colonies...one of her parents came from the same Greek city-state as Herodotus, so he makes her a bit of a heroine.

The good news is that, for all the Iranian propaganda about her being a respected commander, Xerxes ignored her advice and ended up losing the battle of Salamis.

So the good news is that your kids might learn history as they aren't taught in our PC schools.

and more good news: The Iranians hated 300, so presumably they'll hate this one more.

Stories below the fold

Let's rewrite history if it doesn't fit the meme

ONE: the fall of Viet Nam was because the people wanted it:
Even Vietnam, which conventional wisdom counts as a defeat, wasn't. The conventional wisdom, as is often the case, is wrong. By the time the last U.S. combat units pulled out of South Vietnam in 1972, the local guerilla movement, the Viet Cong, was destroyed. North Vietnam came south three years later with a conventional invasion, sending tank and infantry divisions charging across the border and conquering their neighbor the old fashioned way.
Much of the anti Semitism in Europe is inspired by false propaganda deluge and repeated by the usual idiots.
...The one problem with this Palestinian tactic is that more Western politicians and aid (t0 Palestinian) donors are becoming aware of the decades old Palestinian internal propaganda campaign that calls for the destruction of Israel, not a peace deal. Palestinian leaders are having a hard time explaining this double dealing.
Thanks to Baroness Thatcher (may she rest in peace) millions of people are free.
Former Poland president Lech Walesa

"She was a great person. She did a great deal for the world, along with [late US president] Ronald Reagan, pope John Paul II and Solidarity, she contributed to the demise of communism in Poland and Central Europe."
 but today's European leaders can't be honest and see this as merely a political change
German Chancellor Angela Merkel

"She was an extraordinary leader in global politics of her time. I will never forget her part in surmounting the division of Europe and at the end of the Cold War."
She "surmounted the division" of Europe? so much for the "evil empire"....

In the UK the left is rejoicing: even students too young to remember what she did are having parties (presumably they have only been taught to hate her)...

Sigh....via  GetReligion: Read it and weep: no, little US coverage outside of local papers, but the UK Mail, has coverage.
grand jury report here. Try not to vomit.

Good news of the day: South Sudan has restarted their oil production.

Better news of the day: The US has passed Saudi in oil production.

I'm not sure what this means: Polynesian DNA in extinct Brazilian Indians. 
see discussion for what some think it means.

bookmarked for later reading: technical article on new vaccines (including HIV) that might be made using nano technology.

 Size does matter.

also for later reading: Agatha Christie and the handbook of poisons.

Monday, April 08, 2013

Bookmarked for later reading


synthetic drugs...made in China and used by the hip drug culture.

And Soros and his ilk want to legalize all drugs, but never mind.

Dog item of the day


Basalt flows? We Haz that

Once while working in New Mexico, a visiting medical student said she was going to drive up to Carrizozo. I asked her, puzzled: why go there? The only thing there is a lot of lava....(the area has a lot of other things to see, from Roswell to White Sandsto the local ski area/casino ).
She was annoyed: Because I've never seen lava. Oh I replied. I had forgotten: she was a city girl from the Eastern USA where they don't have domant volcanoes or lava flows.

Wired has an article reminding people that basalt flooding is not a volcanic eruption. 
I saw a headline today from Discovery News that called the Siberian Traps “The Deadliest Volcano Ever“. This is a fundamentally flawed idea — flood basalt provinces are made of thousands of fissures and vents that erupted over a wide area for upwards of millions of years. To call any of these flood basalt provinces a single event is like saying the Last Glacial Maximum (Ice Age) was a big snowstorm or the Pacific Ocean is a single dixie cup of water.

the lava flow was completely flat: No volcano in site. Because it was a vent lava flow, from several fissures, not a volcano:

Carrizozo lava flows described here:
The Carrizozo flow (Keszthelyi and Pieri, 1993) is 75 km long from the vent area to the distal margin in the Tularosa Valley (Zimbelman and Johnston, 2002). The entire flow covers ~330 km2 to an estimated thickness of 10 to 15 m, for a total erupted volume of ~4.3 km3 (Allen, 1951)....Cosmogenic (isotopic changes induced by exposure to high energy particles) studies indicate exposure ages of 4800 yrs (Anthony et al., 1998) to 5200 yrs (Dunbar, 1999) for the Carrizozo flow, well within the 1700 and 700 yr error estimates, respectively. These results make the Carrizozo flow the second youngest volcanism in New Mexico (Anthony et al., 1998)

I had seen plenty of lava, having worked in southern rural Idaho for a couple of years: The soil there was thin and volcanic: both volcanos and small rifts supposed to be the origin of that area...

We irrigated our garden by literally flooding it a couple inches deep twice a week (on schedule dictated by the city) but within a few hours, the water had gone through the top soil into the more porous volcanic soil and disappeared. But the soil tended to be grainy and it made the dust in the homes really gritty to clean.

Our soil here is similar; clay like with organic matter, but mixed on top of a volcanic soil underneath, so our dust is gritty here too.

We have an extinct volcano, Mt Arayat, which can be seen from our roof (or from ground level in the rice field areas). Presumably we are safe: It hasn't erupted for a couple thousand years.
photosource. the kayumanggtrails.org

It is associated with many local legends: again from WIKIPEDIA

The Mountain is said to be the home of the god/sorcerer named Sinukuan/Sinukwan or Sucu, which could mean "The end" or "he who others have surrendered to." The mountain was said to have been located in the swamp to its south but relocated because of the evil ways of those who lived there, in addition to which, the people of the swamp were made to suffer numerous misfortunes. Sinukuan is believed to be able to transform and do as he pleases at will, his only real rival being Namalyari of Mount Pinatubo. The waterfalls at Ayala in Magalang, Pampanga is said to be his bathing quarters, and it is often visited by tourists and natives alike. Sinukuan is said to live at the White rock, a Lava dome possibly formed by the last eruption, where its glimmering properties were most likely to have inspired the legend. Contrary to reality, the mountain is believed to be several mountains merging at the center including the tallest two peaks.
In other legends, Sinukuan is said to have bested Makiling of southern Luzon almost effortlessly unlike his arch rival Namalyari. Sinukuan is believed to have daughters who come down only during time of grace and are disguised as humans, Sinukuan himself can be disguised as human. The day he comes back is believed to either be when he responds to the attack of Namalyari on Mount Pinatubo's 1991 eruption or when the time to call his servants upon the end of the world has come.[citation needed]
And if you wonder why Mt. Pinatubo erputed, it was the geothermal drilling that did it..
Edward Santos, one of about 30,000 Aeta aboriginal tribesmen evacuated from the slopes of Mt. Pinatubo, says geothermal drilling on the mountain angered Apo Namalyari, the Aeta god of the volcano. Worse, the government geologists refused to sacrifice a young goat to appease the volcano god. Hence, the sky fell in.


In modern times, it is famous for hiding insurgencies from the government...Lolo's brother supposedly hid there during World War II when he was fighting the Japanese....it also was used by those fighting the American invasion of 1898 and later when the Huks decided to try to make the Philippines into a communist country. Right now, the main problem there is illegal logging, which can cause landslides that kill villagers downstream..., although I suspect the NPA probably hides out there when not hiding with their relatives nearby. This is a bit worrisome for hikers, but it is considered safe right now for tourism

Trivia of the day: "General" Fagan hid out on Arayat when he defected to join the locals against the yanks...

there are a lot of stories here that I wish someone would write down before the old folks die. For example, when we dug up Lolo's birth certificate to verify him for an old age pension, we found that Lolo's original name was after the brother of Rizal. But Rizal was not just anti Spanish but "anti clerical", so Lolo was given a different baptismal name, and when he got his school papers and later his passport, he used his baptismal certificate and not his birth certificate...but he did openly give his son the same name, since he was born long after the Philippines was independent and it was no longer a "taboo" name for either the church nor the now independent Philippine government.

Yabynos blog has photos of his friends and him hiking at Mt Arayat... a very pretty area which I have never visited...why? Maybe because Lolo is beyond hiking age now, and when the family goes there to picnic, I stay home with him...

You should note Pinatubo is upstream from us, but the lay of the land meant we were protected by mountains in between, and the lava flow went west of here, into Pampanga and Clark (which was still an American Airforce base at the time and had to be evacuated). So the main "side effect" of Pinatubo was a lot of refugees, some of whom ended up in our neigborhood (sleeping a block away in the town square, which has gazebos and a public restroom and lots of passerbys who would give you money to eat or a job/place to stay). Emie said when she found a couple of guys sleeping in her garden, she simply hired them to do minor chores in return for food and board...

 Most of them, however, stayed in Pampanga....The government eventually built lots of small homes for those who could not return, but for awhile they were in tents etc...LATimes 1991 story here.

and now? they are resettled, and although Clark (and Subic) are no longer US bases, the country has made them into trade zones, and Clark even has a new airport.

A lot of the economic development is from our beautiful ex president Gloria, who is from that area and still represents them in congress. She arranged lots of money to go there, and if some say it was to help her friends and family, well, the ordinary folks benefitted too...

Just like our town, the choice is sometimes between someone who is competent but we suspect is corrupt and one who is honest but incompetent.

Sunday, April 07, 2013

More stuff for later reading

Aethelflaed, warrior Queen.

Yes: Bernard Cornwell (most famous for writing the Sharpe's Rifles series) has a book that mentions her...in his Saxon series of books.

the Justinian plague article is here.

bookmarked for later reading.

Conspiracy theory? Replacing literature with pop science fads facts.
“Fact-based” books on climate change are also replacing classic works of literature because they are viewed as offering students an opportunity to learn “science.” Freakonomics—a book that has already been a favorite of public school teachers—is preferable to Poe
 T Rex: more terrifying than the movie

Religious illiteracy in the MSM continues. From GetReligion.

a USA Today story that included this interesting nugget (,,,He even brought up the story of Jesus being rebuked in Jerusalem, saying it was the same for him being abused in his hometown.)
Um, is it me or does USA Today think Jesus’ hometown was Jerusalem? (It wouldn’t be the first time, of course, that a major news organization got such a simple fact wrong.)

HeirOfDurin has a report on Hobbit con in Germany...

no spoilers, unless you haven't read the book and don't the hot dwarves' fate.

 FYI: We are still paying for the Civil war.

Update: a busy day with internet going on and off...still have to get up at night to feed the tiny kitty. Sigh.

Bookmarked for later reading

Those "lost" gospels were never lost: some were part of the fictional background for Catholic western Europe and others flourished in the eastern church and along the Silk Road, where Manicheism was popular. LINK

Who died and let them be king? Professsor Roger Pelke Jr sees the experts using environmentalism to take over..

and the link is from Instapundit, not a conspiracy site.


Saturday, April 06, 2013

Video download of the week


CSI HelloKitty

HelloKittyHell reports that you now can have your tooth crown with kitty's image.

You don't have to have a crown to get HelloKitty on your tooth, nor is it just kitty:

Maybe you’ve been seen Tattoos in the arm or back . But what about the Tattoo on the teeth?, Yes Dental Tattoos. This is what happened in India today, Tattoo on the teeth is very popular in these Bollywood countries.
According to orthodontist and implantologist Herman Verma, the youth nowadays is quite adventurous and they take on new trends much easier than generations before them. These dental tattoos are not something new, since they have been used in the West for years (approximately since the early 2000’s).

 as the Times of India article notes:
"Dental tattoos came in the limelight when hip-hop singers and rappers began to don them to look phenomenal on the stage. This trend is basically for party animals," agrees Dr Prashant Bhasin, an assistant professor at a dental college, and a private practitioner, adding, "Recently, a 13-year-old girl got a temporary tattoo done on her tooth. She had seen it on her friend's mother's tooth, so she also wanted one. Temporary tattoos are stuck on the tooth with the help of laser, while permanent ones are drilled into the tooth. Patients mostly go for temporary ones because this is a fad, and may not be so cool after a few seasons. Though permanent tattoos can also be removed, temporary ones are easily removable."
on the other hand, trendy crowns can cause problems.

the Journal of Pediatric Dentristry complains:
Decorative crowns for the teeth have gained a resurgence of popularity among adolescents. Similar to other forms of body art found in the mouth, these trendy crowns may be associated with a variety of oral complications. This case report describes a localized form of necrotizing ulcerative gingivitis, exacerbated by a cosmetic gold crown in a teenage girl. Healthier artistic options are discussed to replace this flashy dental fad.

the "WAGD" post of the day

FP asks: Are all those dead bird and dead pigs in China related to the  new influenza bug?

nah. they are probably from pollution, but never mind. I don't know enough about Chinese geography to see if there could be a link, and the flu seems to have come from infected pigeon droppings in an open air market.
The Agriculture Ministry confirmed late Thursday that the H7N9 virus had been detected in live pigeons on sale at a produce market in Shanghai. The killing of birds at the Huhuai market in Shanghai started Thursday night after the city's agricultural committee ordered it in a notice also posted on its website.

it's not clear if the pigeons were alive or dead, wild pigeons caught for sale or those raised for food or to be used as pets/homing pigeons.

Video of the day


headsup FatherZ

Friday, April 05, 2013

Why tax churches?

 the stories about taxing churches or using the zoning code to keep churches (or nowadays Mosques) from building a new facility always brings up the nasty comments.

If you’re a municipality trying to pay for roads, consider the irritant of religious organizations buying land in light industrial zones, forever being exempt from taxes...
what they are ignoring is the Halo Effect

So what’s the halo effect? It’s a term coined by secular researchers at the University of Pennsylvania who questioned how to put a price tag on the investment that local congregations generate for the public good. They found that 12 Philadelphia congregations contributed $52-million in annual economic value to the city. More consumers put money directly into the economy, buying goods and services locally as weddings and funerals made the cash registers ring. Education and social services were part of the payoff, with programs for children, parents and the elderly.
The office space that churches provide for non-profits, counsellors and charities also had an economic spinoff. So, too, did personal impact, and it’s hard for me to not grovel in gratefulness on that point. When my teenager needed a place to scream on a guitar with a gang who bashed out punk music, our church let the boys into a basement youth room every day after school. Those four boys turned into great Canadian citizens, but imagine if we make it harder for access to community programs for the elderly, divorce recovery groups, AA meetings and so on. “We intercept so much trouble the city doesn’t even see,” said Bill Dyck, a Queen Street West pastor whose church plays host to dozens of street-involved people every Saturday night.

Stories around the Net

Maya Angelou remembers her mother.

I first read Maya Angelou's books while doctoring in Monrovia...one of our nurses was a fan of hers and lent me her paperbacks.

My aunts, the spies.

remembering the "greatest" generation's sacrifices...


Elizabeth Howard: mother of Anne Boleyn has her own story to tell.
As a girl, Elizabeth served in the household of his queen, Elizabeth of York, and later as lady-in-waiting to Catherine of Aragon. During this period rumours began to circulate that the young Henry VIII  was romantically involved with Elizabeth Howard but most historians now discount them. 
heh. One of the few rumors that didn't make it into "the other Boleyn girl"
(headsup TeaAtTrianon)

Reconciling with the father one does not know.

I was lucky enough to have a wonderful father, yet I worry when I see so many American children brought up without knowing their fathers.

Reminds me of this poem from the movie SmokeSignals
the words to the poem can be found HERE.


the Ancient Standard has a post on the Mouth Of Hell:
 the ruins from Turkey are known as Pluto’s Gate or “Plutonium” in Latin, and during its time it appears that a cave among the ruins was known in Greco-Roman tradition & mythology as a portal to the underworld.
The cave ruins are located in an ancient Phrygian city called Hierapolis, and the ancient geographer Strabo described the site as being “full of a vapor so misty and dense that one can scarcely see the ground. Any animal that passes inside meets instant death.”
Writing sometime between 7-18 AD, Strabo says he conducted an experiment at this site during ancient times: “I threw in sparrows and they immediately breathed their last and fell.”
 hum...sort of like the Canary in the coal mine.

but they weren't the only way into hell: Aeneis used a gate of Cumae, near Naples.

Related Posts:

Yum! Cuy adobo!

Why more people are eating guinea pigs.

yes, I ate them visiting my adopted son's family in the mountains of Columbia. He said his mom would keep a few in the kitchen in a box, and when they "got weak" and needed meat, she'd kill and cook a couple for her kids.

headsup Davebarry.

Photo: PA

Good news of the day: Cranes have returned to England.
Once widespread in Britain, the species was driven to extinction as a breeding bird by hunting and habitat loss by 1600, although a small population has been established in the Norfolk Broads since 1979.
Cranes are wary of people and it is very unusual to get near a nest, but these birds have made their nest building attempt just 20 metres from one of the hides at Slimbridge, the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust said.


In our prayers: Roger Ebert has died.....


Philippine news

Another day, another earthquake

No, we didn't feel it: the San Vincente festival and various political rallies are going on in the town square nearby, which means all the heavy trucks are taking a detour around our house....guess one of the loud rumbles was an earthquake.

Dengue fever is surging...it's hot season so the puddles in the open ditch sewers is stagnant and lots of mosquitoes breed there. Since it is also election season, we expect them to spray the area in the near future to show why the mayor is so efficient you need to vote for him.

Since his opponent is the daughter of the mayor who arranged the hit that killed our nephew, the locals have to chose if they want the competent daughter of a murderer or the present mayor who is honest but because he hasn't supported the sandal industry like the previous mayor is unpopular in some quarters.

The race is pretty heated: our cook said they are paying 2000P per vote (50 dollars) instead of the normal price, which is 500 pesos. So the poor are happy selling their votes, figuring that who ever wins it won't matter to them because they are all crooks.

The Nueva Ecija journal says 19 towns and 4 cities are being monitored for election violence: put it this way: the article listed the few cities/towns that aren't being monitored because the list is smaller.

The real problem is political dynasties: the catholic bishops are campaigning against it. But of course, who else has the money to win an election?

Drudge had reports of US planes in the Philippines: but like the war games going on with Korea etc. right now, they are the yearly war games that go on every year.

Update: I just checked, and Drudge has a photo of a flower saying Washington is changing it's rhetoric.

No one is taking their threats seriously: We haven't pulled out our OFW from Korea, and the US hasn't pulled out the military dependents from Korea either. And the news says that there has not been a mobilization of North Korea's army either.

Thursday, April 04, 2013

Download factoid of the day

from the daily what at the Cheezburger site:

With more than 4.2 million downloads per episode, Game of Thrones was the most pirated television show of 2012. However, less than 24 hours after the HBO epic fantasy show's third season premiere, TorrentFreak reported the episode had already been downloaded more than a million times, with one torrent having more than 160,000 simultaneous connections. No torrent has had that many connections since September 23rd, 2008, when more than 144,000 people downloaded the third season premiere of Heroes at once.

TorrentFreak also broke down the locations of the pirates, finding that Australia had the highest piracy rate while London had the highest concentration of pirates amongst major cities. Despite the massive amounts of downloads, the television premiere saw 6.7 million US viewers, despite airing against The Walking Dead's season finale.
this points out several things:

One: that some TV shows are seen by a lot more folks than reported.

Two: That a lot of folks find it easier to download their favorite show than to schedule their life around it.

Three: That pirating is so common that trying to make a law against it is chasing the wind: You simply can't find and fine that many people.

and yes, I download what I can't watch here, but no, I didn't download the Game of Thrones: we have HBO, but I found the series too violent for my tastes. Three murders in the first five minutes of the first show, and I just turned it off...


Know your horses factoid of the day

This one is the Horsehead reflection Nebula.

IC 4592: The Blue Horsehead Reflection Nebula
Image Credit & Copyright: Scott Rosen
Explanation: Do you see the horse's head? What you are seeing is not the famous Horsehead nebula toward Orion but rather a fainter nebula that only takes on a familiar form with deeper imaging. The main part of the above imaged molecular cloud complex is a reflection nebula cataloged as IC 4592. Reflection nebulas are actually made up of very fine dust that normally appears dark but can look quite blue when reflecting the light of energetic nearby stars. In this case, the source of much of the reflected light is a star at the eye of the horse.

not to be mistaken for the HorseHead Nebula.

The Horsehead Nebula
Credit & Copyright: Nigel Sharp (NOAO), KPNO, AURA, NSF
Explanation: One of the most identifiable nebulae in the sky, the Horsehead Nebula in Orion, is part of a large, dark, molecular cloud. Also known as Barnard 33, the unusual shape was first discovered on a photographic plate in the late 1800s. The red glow originates from hydrogen gas predominantly behind the nebula, ionized by the nearby bright star Sigma Orionis. The darkness of the Horsehead is caused mostly by thick dust, although the lower part of the Horsehead's neck casts a shadow to the left. Streams of gas leaving the nebula are funneled by a strong magnetic field. Bright spots in the Horsehead Nebula's base are young stars just in the process of forming. Light takes about 1,500 years to reach us from the Horsehead Nebula. The above image was taken with the 0.9-meter telescope at Kitt Peak National Observatory.