Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Family news

Lolo still has the stomach flu.

Ruby has a fever, headache and aching muscles. I think it's strep throat but here we worry it is dengue or a similar virus.

Joy spent yesterday setting up for a trade fair. She arrived back late at night, and I opened the door but was too tired to wait til the car got in to see how it went. With Lolo sick, I am up with him in the middle of the night for the last few nights.

The good news: Sophie, our white dog, had six puppies and they look healthy. Two are brown spots like Papadog but the others appear pure white so far, so she presumably met another outside dog.

Monday, September 29, 2014

blond bimbo alert

heh. The Diplomad is not impressed.

Elizabeth McCord, has perfected the mouth-breathing stunned ox look. She plays the whole episode looking like, well, an ox gasping for air after being hit in the head by a defective stun gun. She is a "brilliant" ex-CIA analyst, who left the Agency on "principle" to become a "brilliant" University professor, and is recruited by the President, played by Keith Carradine, to become his new SecState
presumably they should have casted the lady with someone who is aging but graceful and intelligent looking, someone like Helen Mirren or Angela Lansbury...

 so tell us why the new TV show about a female secretary of  state shows a blond bimbo who is a ringer for Hillary?

does Hollywood think only blond bimbos should be cast as experts? Men can be 50 years old and greying, but only 30 something bimbos are cast for professionals and experts.

or better yet?

Why not cast an attractive black female as secretary of state?

Nah. That could never happen. Too much prejudice in Hollywood to try such a creative casting decision.

And no, we don't have the show here in Asia (yet).

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Don't forget your towel


Saturday, September 27, 2014

Family news

Lolo had the stomach flu all night. I had been vomiting but not sick, and Ruby had felt a bit sick too. We think it was the KrispyKreme donuts, since the timeline suggested it in each of us.(Ruby had them for breakfast, and we had them for lunch, and Lolo ate three at supper, but I didn't eat any later).

They were in the car from Manila so probably from being left out. Most food here is full of preservatives to prevent food poisoning, but I guess KrispyKreme uses more organic ingredients.

Today we are all feeling better...
The handiman is fixing stuff in the house, like broken windows, leaking gutters, and faucets/toilets that leak. Hopefully this will stop the toilet overflow in the bathroom and the dripping water down the windows every time it rains.

Podcast of the week

Gresham college has lots of nice podcasts (art, music, history, medicine, etc)

The one I listened to last night was the history of Polio vaccine.

I had two friends in gradeschool who developed polio, and two physician collegues, one who was in a wheelchair, who caught it from  patients.

More lectures on vaccines and infectious disease HERE.


Friday, September 26, 2014

Went with the Wind

It's the 75th anniversary of the film Gone With The Wind.


headsup SenseOfEvents

Stuff around the web

There was some discussion that Putin would prevent Americans from using his rockets to go to the space station, but apparantly that was wrong.

A new US/Russian crew just launched there.

another uncovered story: SpaceX's Dragon is delivering cargo to the space station...

a big plus for private enterprise...


Another quiet story that is being ignored: A spacecraft from India has successfully reached Mars.


Factoid of the day from TYWKIWDBI:

Siphonophores are of special scientific interest because they are composed of medusoid and polypoid zooids that are morphologically and functionally specialized. Each zooid is an individual, but their integration with each other is so strong, the colony attains the character of one large organism



Who is paying for the "nuns on the bus" so beloved by Joe Biden to ride around supporting the Democratic party on a rock star type tourbus?..., and is taxpayer money being used to pressure the Vatican to change their doctrine and think that nuns "evolving beyond Christ" and supporting abortion is okay? LINK

father Z has more.


Nothing makes Muslims more angry than rich outsiders telling them to celebrate EID with vegetarian meals using non halal condiments...

Dustbury also mentions the Oklahoma Muslims are anti jihadi types. And like most Okies, their anti Isis protest was done in a polite way...


Rich white guy from canada thinks poor blacks in Trinidad should cut down their fossil fuel consumption.

Yeah. Use wood and deforest the islands instead.


YUM! Hagfish slime

There was an episode on "dirty jobs" where the locals collected hagfish to sell to Korea, where they are a delicacy.

hagfish recipe.

Ah, but you can also use hagfish slime as a substitute for eggwhite. Hagfish slime recipe.

and there are other uses for these slimy creatures
including using their slime as filiments.
From PysOrg:

The slime's prodigious strength and even more remarkable fecundity has attacked the attention of several scientists now trying to replicate it in the lab. While scientists are just begining to understanding how the so-called gland thread cells (GTCs) that produce the slime might actually work, others are already seeking to commercialize the slime as a high performance fiber.
Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2014-09-ultimate-biofilament-hagfish-slime.html#jCp

however, before you look forward to a job removing slime from hagfish, the article notes that the scientists hope to put the slime making gene into a bacteria to produce the slime.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

WTF headlines of the day

The five minute hate on facebook isn't working: Send in the astroturfing robots:

 Only 10 Twitter users account for almost 70% of all StopRush tweets to advertisers, amplified by illicit software. In addition, almost every communication from a StopRush activist originates from outside the State of the advertiser... (thus) “A small number of politically motivated out of-state activists are distributing target lists indiscriminately, and annoying small businesses until they give up the advertising deals that help them grow, or risk being unable to conduct business at all. It’s not even activism… it’s blackmail,” according to Brian Glicklich, Rush Limbaugh Show spokesperson.


A couple blogs are passing on a story of two ebola patients "resurrecting" at their own funerals.

Diagnosing death is not easy in rural Africa, and the burials take place quickly. So if you starts very shallow breathing, have no obvious pulse, and are unconscious, you might be called dead and buried.

One of our teachers in Africa, a diabetic, instructed his students that if he "died", they should rush him to the hospital, because he would be in a diabetic coma, not dead.

Then there is the story of Teresa of Avila, who almost was buried but her father insisted he saw evidence she was breathing..

And once, in medical school, we had a patient in ICU who was declared dead, and had a pulse when they came to pick up the body.

 All those horror stories of premature burials could be true: Which is why they now enbalm people first.


EWTN had a discussion of Alien life last week with the Vatican astronomer.
would you baptize an extraterrestrial?

C2C types tend to see a conspiracy in this.

If contact to a Catholic tv station gives you hives, Here is the talk by him at SETI

uh oh: The demotion of Pluto was a Vatican Plot?

and some wag asked father Z how could we baptize an alien if they would burst into flame in water.

answer here

stuff around the web


Linguistic clues to scythian amazons

excuse the sloppy links...I am on my tablet

factoid of the day

Archbishop Sheen had an fbi file


and here are some of his talks.


another sign that the end of the world is nigh

Miss America explains why sexual abuse was ok


caution x rated

for later reading


the problem is ignorance?

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

stuff around the web


Gold from past heros keeps tradition àlive.


Tucked in the report of atrocities:even goats had their genitals covered.

someone tell PETA


Monday, September 22, 2014

Family news

Lolo lost his old watch last week, and we turned the place up and down looking for it, but couldn't find it.
the good news;
The laundress today found it in the basket of dirty laundry from last Friday (that she hadn't done due to the heavy rain from the typhoon).

So Lolo is happy, and we are giving thanks to the Lord, St Anthony, and of course, the laudress (along with a small "gift").

The bad news:

Joy took her sister back to Manila. She has been here all weekend with her brother and parents visiting.
She has to talk to her doctor: The biopsy is bad, so she is seeing if she can get into a trial for a new type of biological chemotherapy.

Keep her in your prayers.

Ruby went with them.

and pray that we get the harvest in okay: The last two typhoons hit north of here, but so far we are okay, and harvest is starting now.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Death panels? We don't have no stinkin death panels

On the other hand, the "architect" of Obamacare thinks we are useless eaters after age 75...

... (aging) It robs us of our creativity and ability to contribute to work, society, the world. It transforms how people experience us, relate to us, and, most important, remember us. We are no longer remembered as vibrant and engaged but as feeble, ineffectual, even pathetic.

yeah. Useless eaters. Being able to love, showing our children and grandchildren how to bear pain and disabilities with courage, keeping alive the memories of the past...all those things are not part of the mix.


so Palin was right....who wudda thot?

and maybe Palin derangement syndrome is real too...(via Instapundit)

Professor Bob is blogging on the Crimean war, and today's podcast is on Florence nightingale.


There is a lot of discussion on the crazyness of the Franklin expedition, why they died, and who ordered them to lug all those luxuries when going for food. Was it egomania? Hubris? Or lead poisoning from the badly sealed tin foods? Or vitamin A toxicity from eating polar bear livers? Or all of the above?

The discussion has reopened with the discovery of one of their ships in Canadian waters.

slate and the UKGuardian discusses the puzzle, Via TeaAtTrianon:

more here: NOVA 
and here:




it's a muslim thing.

Mostly in women.... and the clan fights will make things worse...



Saturday, September 20, 2014


Rain all night from a small typhoon in the north.

Mild flooding here, but Manila is a mess due to rain and rivers still high from the drainoff from last week's typhoon.

internet going on and off here

Friday, September 19, 2014

Stuff around the net

BBC article on cloves, the sins of colonialism, and the clove tree that defied empires.

In 1652, after displacing the Portuguese and Spanish, the Dutch introduced a policy known as extirpatie: extirpation.
All clove trees not controlled by the Voc were uprooted and burned.
Anyone caught growing, stealing or possessing clove plants without authorisation faced the death penalty.
On the Banda Islands, to the south - the world's only source of nutmeg - the Dutch used Japanese mercenaries to slaughter almost the entire male population.
Like Opec today, the Voc also limited supply to keep prices high. Only 800-1,000 tonnes of cloves were exported per year. The rest of the harvest was burned or dumped in the sea.
Somehow, Afo managed to slip through the net. A rogue clove. A guerrilla plant waging a secret war of resistance.
Afo would eventually bring down the Dutch monopoly on cloves.
In 1770, a Frenchman, appropriately named Poivre, stole some of Afo's seedlings.

the article includes this factoid:

A Han dynasty ruler from the 3rd Century BC insisted that anyone addressing him chew cloves to sweeten their breath. 


Manila needs a new sewer/drainage system, so is in danger of floods as the rain from the last storm comes downstream from the north.

Marikina is partly under sea level, but they managed to build there anyway.


Mona Lisa had high cholesterol

The facial expression - one of the main reasons why the 16th century painting is among the most famous works of art in the world – shows signs of a build up of fatty acids around the eyes of the subject , according to Vito Franco of the University of Palermo.
The Italian scientist says the. model in the oil painting had a xanthelasma – a subcutaneous accumulation of cholesterol – in the hollow of her left eye and a fatty tissue tumour.
It suggests very high levels of cholesterol in the model, thought to be Lisa del Giocondo, a member of a Florence family who married a cloth and silk merchant.

the latest hack: Home Depot. I got an email about this today


Facebook isn't content in knowing your life story and presumably letting the NSA and a lot of businesses to spy on you, they now insist that you use your real name, and it has caused a kerfuffle because they are removing the stage names of dragqueens from their site.

Drag queen Sister Roma says Facebook should change its policy that bans profiles with fake names. (Isabel Angell/KQED)

A Facebook spokesman said the company requires people to use their real name to promote accountability, but drag queen Sister Roma says that is her real name.
“If you ask anybody who I am in and out of drag, my name is Roma. So currently my profile says Michael Williams next to this gorgeous picture of me, and it doesn’t make sense,” she said. “People don’t look for Michael Williams, and it’s not who I am.”

And one wonders if the "fake name" applies to others with stage names or who publish under a pen name.

and I wonder how Facebook knows your real name and that you are lying?

FYI: How to use a fake identity on facebook.


The TV version of Fargo: Behind the scenes.

the best thing about the film were the "in jokes" about Minnesota, but the TV version hasn't hit our screens yet.


Siskel and Ebert panned back to the future?

Well, it's not a "great" film, only a classic comedy.


NYTimes has a couple articles and an editorial condemning "futile" care, especially at the end of life.

Can you say "death panels"?

Most docs actually discourage this, but what they don't see is that often the "futile" care is done because there is a chance for recovery...and there is a fear if you don't do everything you will be sued.

Get rid of malpractice suits and you'll see less futile care.

And I should add: Certain minorities insist that everything be done because they suspect they will be left to die because they are black/nativeAmerican, and that if they were white, they'd be given the chance to live... Given my experience, sometimes they are right to refuse to sign these papers.


Politics, political correctness, and budget cuts are destroying the US Navy.

and the press is parroting "racism" in the services, never mind that it's not true.
it's about getting out the vote, not about racism, since the military was always one way to get trained for a job, the result of the manipulation is a higher unemployment rate, but never mind.


headlines emphasize the negative ignore the real story

children now don't die as much as they used to...

Heh. Shangri la keeps moving

In archeology, experts keep finding "peaceful" cultures that didn't go to war, only to have their ideas found wrong when they find bodies (Minos) or literature (Maya) or other evidence.
Ditto for anthropologists, the most famous being Margaret Meade's finding of a peaceful Samoa which she attributed to teenaged promiscuity.

Here, the greens continue these delusions: There was a nice film about the paradise of a small island in the Visayas that they hoped to keep for ecotourism and they described the folks as happy in their simplicity. The problem? It is Joy's home island, and we always are getting pleas to hire people so they can support their families.

The problem is that a lot of cultures emphasize being nice, so outsiders don't recognize the problems there. For example, where I worked in Africa, the emphasis was never showing anger, so if someone got mad enough, they used witchcraft to revenge themselves. This is one reason for the atrocities in Rwanda: Anger explodes.
Tibet was a favorite "Shangri la" and even was made to seem so in the movies including Seven years in Tibet...but the book, if you read it closely, includes reports of deaths of women in childbirth and children dying of disease.
The Chinese taking them over is seen in the west as "evil", but the Chinese are trying to improve the dire poverty there by development, and those sent there are paid extra as it is considered a hardship post.

So are the Chinese destroying culture, or trying to help the peasants to get out of dire poverty?

The argument about "Destroying culture" is true, but there is no easy answer. Try to educate people into the modern world, and you are now considered evil (although I noticed that on the Native American "reservations", that the ones most against development tend to be college educated Marxists...the regular ones tend to want jobs, hence the casinos and development of oil and mineral resources).

The Shangri la then was changed to Nepal, but after the regicide and the communist insurgency, maybe that won't last long. And now, after the last episode where 7 Sherpas died, a few reporters noted that the Sherpas who risked their lives to help tourists go up Mt Everest did so to support their families... not because they "enjoyed" it, but because it was the only job available that paid well.

well now, the latest Shangri la is Bhutan. at least according to a lady who graduated from an Ivy league college and worked at NPR.

Why, with a huge unemployment rate (leading to the gov't encouraging people to work overseas) and a high maternal mortality is it called Shangri La?

And yes, it allows serial marriage which is seen as a good thing, according to her (just ignore the children, I guess)

Also interesting are her descriptions of ordinary life in Bhutan. Guests walk into people's homes without knocking. Marriage is a casual institution, with couples deemed to be wed when they move in together and unwed when one person moves out. Not every aspect of life in Bhutan is so different from life in L.A.

yeah, just like LA, including children growing up fatherless and in poverty?

The UNICEF’s report ranks Bhutan 45th among 198 countries in under-five mortality rate, the highest in the region after Afghanistan. India is at 49, Nepal 62, Sr Lanka 110, Bangladesh 58 and Maldives 88.
Dysentery, diarrhoea and pneumonia still top the causes for death in children under five in Bhutan.
“The state of the world’s children is intimately linked with the state of the world’s mothers,” said the education minister Lyonpo Thakur Singh Powdyal in his address. 

on the other hand, after promoting the country as an ideal situation, it is nice that the latest softcover version notes there is a little problem with refugees in the area.

The softcover version contains a chapter about the Bhutanese-Nepalese refugee situation, as well as a reader’s guide for book groups. \\\

so where is the shangri la?

Last week, David warren noted one poll said the happiest people were in Denmark, which sounds fine except for their high suicide rate suggests otherwise.

Today's "poll" says the happiest place on earth is Panama.

take the information with a grain of salt.because they also came to this conclusion:

 five countries outside of these regions had levels of thriving within an element that rank in the top 10 of all countries: Bahrain in financial well-being, Saudi Arabia in community well-being and physical well-being, Malta in social well-being, and Sri Lanka and the United Arab Emirates in community well-being.
So, did they poll the 20 percent of the population of Saudi who are OFWs? Or ask the UAE's maids and oil workers if they were happy?  Did they poll the Tamil areas of Sri Lanka?

In other words, there is no "Shangri La": there are only people being people with people's problems.

As for "Shangri la": When I was a missionary, I was warned that foreigners suffering from culture shock tended to fall into two groups: Those who only saw the good in the the country they visited, and those who only saw the evil.

And seeing Shangri la in primitive countries is a tradition that goes back to Tacitus, who compared the pure and brave Germans to the decadent Romans...


addendum from the BBC article:

About 100,000 ethnic Nepalese refugees from Bhutan live in camps in Nepal after they were allegedly made to leave Bhutan under government pressure in the early 1990s.
From this population, three groups have emerged - the Bhutan Communist Party (Marxist-Leninist-Maoist), the Bhutan Tiger Force and the United Revolutionary Front of Bhutan.
yeah. They did their own version of ethnic cleansing...

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Stuff around the web

Sarah Hoyt suggests that the lilliputin blogs have broken the monopolies that control the hoi polloi.

It was a time of transparency. Real transparency, quite unlike the foolish promises of previous politicians blinded by their narcissism, and nothing like the rotten assurances of the decrepit Gray Lady who had, in her time, turned ablind eye to the Holocaust and hidden the horrors of Holodomor, the depravity of the Gulags to praise collectivist systems that devoured people and dreams and spit out nothing but misery and dehumanization and a boot stepping on a human face forever.
Now, suddenly, they couldn’t make their picked man, their chosen one into theharbinger of that great collectivist future.  They couldn’t snigger behind their hands at the unwashed people who’d never know of his faux pas. Oh, they did what they could, that guard of journalistic castrati protecting the corpse of a corrupt and bloated bureaucracy. But enough slipped through the cracks that most people knew something was wrong: the Summer of Recovery that resided in some unspecified future conditional; the idea that his face would appease Islam’s irate warriors was undone by the beheadings the Jihadists insisted on posting on Youtube; the way the Light Bringer seemed to be in the dark when bereft of a teleprompter.
via Instapundit 

Well, Rush and others have been pointing out stuff that people didn't dare to say, and if you think Rush is bigoted, you haven't been listening to him (or the really scary voices out there).


And the boycott of those who dare to say that traditional marriage is....traditional in places like churches are showing that the blacklist exists, but not it's not against those who posit to overthrow the gov't to impose a tyranny but those who are quietly working hard for a living and helping others to do so.

which is why I don't use firefox.


and while you were sleeping, the terrorists took over the Sahara.

and China is taking over the sea lanes to Japan and the traditional fishing grounds of the Philippines (and the petroleum there), with little opposition except for nasty letters from Europe, who assure the Philippines that they will back them if they also post a nasty letter to the international organizations who, if they judge this, will also send a nasty letter. Sigh.

Most folks who know veterans of the Pacific in WWII know that an invasion of Japan would have been a blood bath for all involved, and that the Bomb actually saved a couple million lives. But the left has rewritten history to paint the US as the bad guys (ignoring that more people were killed in the "rape of Manila" than in Hiroshima).

StrategyPage links to the classic article that gives estimates of casualties expected if the invasion had taken place. PDF

My cousin, who was back in the US after his ship had been hit by a kamikazi, figured he would die in the invasion, so when on leave, went out and got drunk....and when he woke up confused, he "walked" out a second story window, breaking his leg...as a result he was with my mom when VJ day was announced.

As for the Philippines, the locals here were chasing the Japanese through the mountains...a horrible story that has never been told, that includes cannibalism because the locals wouldn't help feed the Japanese but would kill or poison their food. This is mentioned as the cause of despression/PTSS  in one of Endo's short stories, and there is a Japanese film about it but I can't remember the name of the film.

I don't have the link, but China just posted a story that if locals voted to become part of China, they would accept and help those areas to seceed against their government.

No, I don't think this is aimed at the Philippines, where China is hated, nor about Taiwan (ditto) s, but at Siberia. Putin better watch his back door.

In other words, ignore the pundits that see a conspiracy between Russia and China against the west.
However, Russia will oppose the US helping the Sunnis in Syria, because of blowback in Chechnya. In this fight, I back Iran, and I wish the President would explain that some bad guys are worse than others, and admit that Saudi is behind a lot more terrorism than Iran.

And, unlike Saudi, Iran does allow Christian churches to exist (But not open conversions).Dirty little secret: Without their overseas workers, Saudi would implode. That is not true of Iran,


A female politician cries sexual harassment, but no, they weren't hitting on her for sex: actually the problem was that some pols pointed out that she was...fat.

So is calling the NJ governor "porky" now called sexual harassment?

and if I warn my patients they are overweight, can I be accused of sexual harassment?


Cat Steven claims Islam is for peace, but GetReligion checked the wayback machine and found Stevens was backing violence way back then...

 On reading the Post, one, who called herself "Gloria2," posted a link to a 1989 articlein the New York Times:
The musician known as Cat Stevens said in a British television program to be broadcast next week that rather than go to a demonstration to burn an effigy of the author Salman Rushdie, ''I would have hoped that it'd be the real thing.''
so, will he disavow his previous opinions in public, and condemn the violence against heretics and infidels now?


FYI: Another day, another volcanic eruption.

No Mayon volcano is far from here, but I've visited there and it is a beautiful sight.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Family news

Joy's sister will have a liver biopsy later this week.

keep her in your prayers: She's getting sicker by the day.

Lolo's retirement papers need another trip to Manila with more papers to fill out.

It keeps the bureaucrats busy to make lots of regulations like this...and although it is mainly a way to stop fraud, I suspect that if Joy gave them a "thank you" gift, they'd approve it in two minutes. But she is a Christian and doesn't do that.

Stuff around the web

A great scroll illustration of the Hobbit 3

via torn


The pope marries some people, including those who are living together, not in a trial marriage but as a common law marriage, and a person who was divorced but had an annulment.

So what's to report? Even that simple action is twisted by the so called MSM.


a discussion of dress codes in schools. link2

puritanism, or emphsizing "dress for success"?

given this photo of a girl in a tanktop, I suggest that she does need the fashion police, since her outfit is ugly and not becoming to her...it makes her look fat and frumpy.

I should talk: I dress frumpy,mainly because it's hard to buy clothes that fit properly here... and even when I wear something well fitting and beautiful I look frumpy.

But when teenaged girls came in looking frumpy, it often meant poor self esteem, and I would advise them on dress and makeup. And get the boygs to use acne medicine.

Here in the Philippines, kids wear uniforms.


International law? We don't need no international law 

more here.

and Here.

We are the weakest link, and solidarity from Europe is worth a bucket of spit (to use Gardner's phrase).

another casualty of having a weak president in the USA.
and don't expect the environmentalists to notice the destruction of the reef ecosystems. They love China and Momjones believes every pro ecology talking point put out by that gov't. (ignore the riots against pollution)...

the WAGD post of the week (which I mentioned as a "headsup" yesterday)

Wired story on the up coming Ebola epidemic.

Given the number of Pinoy health care workers all over the world, we'll be on the front lines.

And don't forget: The Haj is coming..

I wonder why they are still taking sick folks to hospitals? When we had cholera, they treated all these patients in school rooms so that the hospital would be safe for non cholera patients. A similar plan was in place in 2001 for a possible Smallpox epidemic. Schools usually have running water, chairs (patients are put on the ground on mats) and are near villages, so you don't have to transport the patients far.

Which is why I laughed when I read of a "100 bed hospital" of tents being sent to Africa. WTF?

Of course, you could do what the Africans did in the olden days: Put sick patients in huts/houses on the outskirts of town, and bring food/water etc. to the doorways every day. If no one emerges in ten days, burn the huts and the dead folks inside. No nursing means a higher rate of death, but in the long run, fewer caregivers would catch the disease and spread it to others...

One reason for the Native American depopulation was that unlike Africans, they had little experience with epidemics, so tended to nurse their dying.

And, of course, this is why the black death killed most of the good priests/nuns/etc. who did the nursing in medieval days...


for later reading


SP parses no boots on the ground

and notes the propaganda lies behind the hatrd of Israel...something ignored by dem pundits who blasted Cruz..who spoke to a "christian solidarity" conference with ties to Hamas...



Tuesday, September 16, 2014

another sign that the end of the world is nigh

The NYTimes notices that the emperor has no clothes.

 Full commentary by Belmont club

and to make things worse:

EBOLA PANDEMIC! 1 to 2 million dead?

yes, the calculations come from a rabid right wing website, but I usually peruse it because a lot of lurkers have expertise in a lot of area and those threads make up for the many nutty comments.

and my thought here was: hmm..wonder if it is biowarfare to lower the unwanted excess population.

Which is why some Africans on the extreme left think so.

Sorry...I gotta get a second cup of coffee

Family news

Joy is going to Manila for deliveries and also to accompany her sister to her doctor. I figure the next step is a needle biopsy of her liver nodules, but we'll wait for him to decide. Chano is restless, but okay. Usually he gets this way right before he gets creative. Lolo is fine. We took him to get fingerprinted so that they will resume his Philippine veteran pension (to prove he is still alive). Joy will deliver the papers in Manila to their office. We are still waiting for the check for the huge Christmas gift order from a gov't office: She'll check on that too...I suspect someone is waiting for a "thank you" gift" before they release the check, but Joy and Chano are too Christian to do such things. Nono is over to finish cleaning up the garden etc. He bought a bunch of small birds to eat. I'd call them prarie chickens but don't know the real name. We put them in the empty bird cage to keep them safe from the cats until it's time to eat them.

Monday, September 15, 2014

another day, another typhoon

So we got hit by the edge of a typhoon: signal two here because it hit north of here. The streets are flooded, and our roof leaked via the skylight ventilation holes all over our living/dining area. It's okay, because we no longer have a rug there, and the concrete tiled floor is easy to clean up. The gutters draining the roof also overflowed so we had a minor flood in our room, which filled only three towels (it has hardwood floors). The streets are full of water, but our house is on high ground so it's okay. Joy was going to get some papers for Lolo to verify he is alive, so he can get his Philippine veterans pension, but the streets are flooded so it will have to wait. Tuesday she has deliveries in Manila and will go to the doctor with her sister, maybe. Manila didn't get hit as badly as we did, but today we worry about the irrigation dams and the water from upstream causing flooding on top of our mild flooding.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Cat item of the day

from CIC on StrategyPage

Lincoln liked cats, and often fed them at the table, to the horror of his wife.

Reportedly, during dinner at the White House one evening, Lincoln used a gold fork from the presidential service to feed a cat named “Tabby.”
Mrs. Lincoln asked, perhaps rhetorically, “Don’t you think it’s shameful for Mr. Lincoln to feed Tabby with a gold fork?”
The President replied, “If the gold fork was good enough for former President James Buchanan, I think it is good enough for Tabby.”

more here at famouscats webpage

and no, I have no idea if this is a photoshop.

Stuff around the web

Mainly bookmarked for later reading

Lady Imans? We haz that.

and they go back 300 years.

In Henan, along with a few Hui Muslim enclaves in northwestern China, women-run mosques are counterparts to the houses of worship for men; female mosques serve as community centers for women. Within them, female imams do nearly everything their male equivalents do, apart from officiating over weddings and funerals. Technically, they’re not allowed to stand at the front of the mosque to lead prayers, a symbolic gesture. Instead, the women lead prayers facing in the same direction as their flock, rather than facing out toward them as would the leader of a mosque for men.

Headsup GetReligion.


Philip Jenkins has a series on Mary in Revealation (the Apocalypse). He is a (non catholic) historian of religion, not a dogmatist.
From today's discussion:
*In the earliest Christian writings, the Epistles and Mark’s gospel, Mary scarcely appears, and certainly not in any leadership role.
*Towards the end of the first century, Mary’s role becomes vastly more important, most dramatically in Luke-Acts. The Magnificat in Luke 1 is a prime example.
so devotion to Mary started 50 years after Jesus's death?
*No later than the mid-second century, devotion to Mary is so intense as to inspire major apocryphal writings like the Protevangelium, which present her almost as a parallel Christ figure. Early Fathers like Justin Martyr and Irenaeus are writing about Mary as a kind of anti-Eve, who reverses the Fall. ...
So why do we have this process of exaltation, which begins relatively late, but which then takes off at amazing speed between say 90 and 150?...
discussion follows (and if you want in depth discussion, check his other posts on the subject).


Waiting for Godot to leave has two posts discussing the film Calvary. LINK LINK

I can't decide if I like the film, mainly because the parishoners are not real people, although the priest is.
The film is full of the parishoners ridiculing the priest with all sorts of anti church blasphemies while he tries to do his job counseling and helping sinners. My problem? These same folks then go to communion on Sunday. Huh?

The plot is easier to understand if you realize that the press and media in Ireland was spouting anti Catholic propaganda for the last 40 years, because the elites decided that the only thing that stood in the way of Ireland becoming a modern country was the church. So the scandal of "pedophile priests" was a godsend to these folks (albeit a real scandal).

But it wasn't just priests, and the Rotherham scandal and the BBC scandal in the UK show. But never mind.

I'd be less cynical about the bishops if I didn't remember my medical school classes that suggested that if we removed these hangups we would no longer have mentally ill people, since all mental illness was from sexual repression. ..and the idea in 1970 was that sexual abuse of young kids usually didn't harm them, but taking them to court to testify would be a greater harm to the child, and lead to the jailing or the often gentle and well liked perpetrator who didn't really mean to harm the child.. (he would, of course, get a lot less sympathy from jail inmates than he did from psychiatrists, so why jail him).

I am not defending the bishops: When I worked in Appalachia, the bishop bragged that he had eliminated abuse in the diocese, yet a nurse cried on my shoulder that her husband was asked to intercede with the family of an abused 12 year old not to accuse the nice priest who had raped him. The priest was new in the diocese, and was a very "nice" man, so why put him in jail. Was he a serial rapist? We'll never know. How bad was the diocese? Well when one of the young priests ran away with a catechism teacher, the older, wiser pastor sighed and said cynically: Well, at least it was with a woman.

But abuse occurs all over the place...When I was in a small town practice, I saw about one girl a month for sexual abuse check...half were not real, but some were. Most were simple touching and didn't go to court, but a few were not touching but serial rape, usually by babysitters or mom's boyfriend, but one case by a father.

This doesn't include the cases I didn't treat but know about personally, including incest by a father,abuse in foster homes, and harm by a female baby sitter.

 And when I worked on "The Rez", I only saw a few cases, but one of our nurses said a lot of the men in AA were drinking because of sexual abuse as children. Some might have been in boarding school, but the area didn't use boarding schools, so I suspect relatives being the problem. LINK

To put things into perspective:  CDC survey of US high school kids on health habits, which lists sexual abuse, rape and assault along with not eating your veggies. (must be non judgemental I guess).

Had First Sexual Intercourse Before Age 13 Years
Nationwide, 6.2% of students had had sexual intercourse for the first time before age 13 years (Table 63). Overall, the prevalence of having had sexual intercourse before age 13 years was higher among male (9.0%) than female (3.4%) students; higher among white male (5.2%), black male (21.1%), and Hispanic male (11.1%) than white female (2.6%), black female (7.0%), and Hispanic female (2.9%) students, respectively; and higher among 9th-grade male (13.3%), 10th-grade male (8.6%), 11th-grade male (6.8%), and 12th-grade male (6.2%) than 9th-grade female (4.1%), 10th-grade female (3.9%), 11th-grade female (3.0%), and 12th-grade female (2.2%) students, respectively. Overall, the prevalence of having had sexual intercourse before age 13 years was higher among black (13.9%) and Hispanic (7.1%) than white (3.9%) students; higher among black (13.9%) than Hispanic (7.1%) students; higher hisamong black female (7.0%) than white female (2.6%) and Hispanic female (2.9%) students; higher among black male (21.2%) and Hispanic male (11.1%) than white male (5.2%) students; and higher among black male (21.2%) than Hispanic male (11.1%) students. Overall, the prevalence of having had sexual intercourse before age 13 years was higher among 9th-grade (8.8%) than 10th-grade (6.3%), 11th-grade (4.9%), and 12th-grade (4.2%) students;
 why do the numbers go down when older kids answer the question? Maybe they are in denial. I doubt it's because five years earlier the rates were lower.

end rant

Some American politician named Cruz got into trouble for giving a speech to Arab Christians in the US saying that they needed also to remember Israel is being persecuted. It didn't go over well, since some Palestinians who fled Israel in 1948 were Christians, but he brought up a point: Keeping hatred alive is not going to stop those who are killing now.

StrategyPage constantly notes how Arab propaganda has brain washed locals into Israel hatred as a scapegoat (to point hatred away from their corruption/ stealing everything in sight which leads to local poverty). Now that propaganda is biting back.

September 12, 2014: Israel was not asked to join the international coalition against ISIL (Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant). This was because the ten Arab members of this twenty country coalition are still trapped by decades of their own “Israel must be destroyed” propaganda and rhetoric...
yeah, but the western press don't bother to mention such things.

 Hamas deliberately stored rockets in residential neighborhoods, often in schools, hospitals and mosques. Yet only about half the dead Palestinians could be termed “innocent civilians”. The rest were Hamas men handling the rocket, mortar and gunfire attacks on Israel. Oddly, according to most media Israel gets no credit for minimizing civilian casualties and Hamas no blame for trying to get civilians killed
  despite this, SP says that most American Muslims are...American. and they go on to explain it in detail.


A longer essay about the philosophical problem of Islam here

is God beyond good and evil? Is evil bad because it's evil, or because God says so? Catholic christianity insists that man finds god via Faith and reason, but Islam (and some protestant sects) deny this.

 Understanding the differences in belief is essential for Catholics so that we can also use reason to think rightly about God. This has become a real challenge in the West, with many holding that metaphysics is a part of religion instead of philosophy. Pope John Paul II fought against this in his encyclical Fides et Ratio and Pope Benedict had this in mind in his Regensburg Lecture when he spoke of “disturbing pathologies of religion and reason which necessarily erupt when reason is so reduced that questions of religion and ethics no longer concern it.” He saw this pathology not only in placing violence within God’s nature, but also in the secularized West.
I'll have to read it in detail later, since philosophy is not my strong point.


water clouds in space.

and a solar flare is due to hit today.


BBC factoids of the week:

sharks kill more men than women

Pele was named for Thomas Edison

and Noah's ark was a coracle made with a rope?

Friday, September 12, 2014


yo ho ho and a bottle of rum

don't mess with Grace O'Malley

Grainne Uaile, also known as Grace O’ Malley, was accused of piracy and lived from 1530 – 1603. She inherited her father’s shipping company when he died and became a very wealthy woman. Legend has it that she cut off all her hair because her father refused to allow her to sail with him. He claimed her hair was too long and would get caught in the ropes of the ship. At this time, it was also considered bad luck to have a woman onboard at sea. Grainne’s drastic response earned her the nickname, “Grainne Mhaol” maol, meaning bald; the name stuck and eventually became “Graineuaile”. She was known for her battle prowess and cut throat fighting tactics at sea and also known by her nickname, “The Sea Queen of Connacht”. Grainne even met Queen Elizabeth I to petition for the release of her sons and her half brother.

and soon to be a movie...

and remember: September 19 is International Talk Like a Pirate Day

While you were sleeping

While the US press was busy doing their thing, ISIS and Putin weren't the only ones who noticed that the watchdog was asleep Podcast from strategypage HERE.

more essays about china here.

they note a lot of the bigshots are talking big, partly because they are isolated and don't understand other cultures, and partly because they would like to expand to a "Greater Middle Kingdom" and that would distract those complaining about lack of freedom, the financial bubble, pollution and corruption problems.

 China's grab of the tiny scholls in the west Philippine sea and elsewhere. has
been pretty well ignored by the west.

The latest is that first, they chain off the sea inside the small reefs and islets so the locals can't fish, and then start building on them by pouring concrete...and now they are planning to build towns or military bases there.

You'd think that the eco types would complain, but they are too left to notice anyone outside the west destroying the environment. I got lots of nasty feedback after noting on MomJones that their claims of green initiatives in China is based on Chinese government claims, and they lie. I mean, it's nice to claim they will push solar energy, but if you surf the net, you will notice pollution problems near the towns where they build them.

As for local scandals, I have fallen behind. Old leftie, retired Archbishop Cruz says it hasn't changed that much.

The concerned citizens are exasperated. So much public funds go to private pockets in the same way that so much private funds pay for so many public utilities – all of which are the incarnations of gross graft and corrupt practices. So many people suffering from want of food, shelter and clothing. So much taxes for so many things under so many reasons are paid from birth to death. So many heinous crimes committed day in and day out. So many men and women willing to expose the lives and limbs to danger just to earn a living overseas. So man women and girls become buy-and-sell materials. Marijuana, gambling, thievery have become part of life

yeah...another drug raid on a nearby house last week.

well well

After I upgraded my firefox about a year ago, I lost the ability to use delicious for my bookmarks.

However, I just found I can use them surfing the net.

the bad news is that Ruby has my new computer, and the old one is on it's last leg (the cord won't attach all the time, so either it's broken or the electrical system box is bad...if I or the cat touches the cord, it  stops). It also has no battery and a dvd drive that doesn't always work, and I get the "BLUE SCREEN OF DEATH" about once a week.

I figure fixing all these things would cost almost as much as a new computer, but Ruby has pretty well taken over my new computer, and I use my tablet. Maybe in another few months I might invest in another computer and send this one to Dell in Manila to get fixed.

Family news

We are having thunderstorms every afternoon, so I turn off the computer and don't blog. Usually I surf the headlines in the morning with my tablet, but can't do much writing with a tiny keyboard.

Lolo is fine.

Joy is in Manila today with deliveries, and she hopes to nag the office for the check owed to us for eight months for a huge Christmas rice/gift package delivery. Sigh. Harvest is soon, so we could use the money for harvest expesnse (extra men, thresher, bags, transport, plastic to dry the rice or gasoline to dry it in our new drier if it rains).

Joy's sister had an eye taken out a year ago for melanoma, and was doing well, but her last scan showed nodules in her liver. She sees the doctor next week. Keep her and Joy in your prayers.

Ruby is busy busy with her (Pentecostal) church with leading singing at church worship (at least she is now too old for the dancing team of young girls. I loathe "liturgical dance" but it keeps the youn'un's happy, so WTF).

Lolo's too frail to go to church with me and it's quite hot still, so I started attending the 530 am mass instead of the 7 am. At least I don't faint in church, but it's usually more crowded with folks who have to work on Sunday.

Lots of beggars coming around with wheezing kids. I don't know if it's the weather, which is overcast, or a virus. I'm coughing and wheezing too, so it must be going around.

There is a clinic for kids that is free, if your kid gets sick during the day, but if you need medicine or get sick when it's closed, they hit the rich folks for help. If they need expensive medicine, they hit the city and get a certificate saying they are indeed poor. Of course I've shut the door on a few who come around with old papers (especially when I've already "donated"). Some of them are professional beggars, and a scam. One very poor lady hit me for her daughter's high school graduation party a few days after she claimed poverty so they are not destitute. The usual gift is a peso, but I tend to give 20 pesos (about 50 cents) and more if the cook assures me it's not a scam. Lots of time I don't have any change or money left over to give, so we say not to the "regulars", or if it's an emergency send them down the street to the new Mayor's house. We figure she has plenty if she's like her father and skimming the books.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

for later reading


heh, if you analyze studies, a lot of them don't say what is claimed.

Yes. We docs know this because we analyze the nonsense in journal clubs. But it won't stop them from using these flawed studies to decide your care under Obamacare..


When I wasn't looking, they started a brain initiative to map the brain and cure mental illnesses.

what could go wrong?

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Stay Young

1.  Try everything twice.
On one woman's tombstone she said she wanted this epitaph:
"Tried everything twice. Loved it both times!"
2.  Keep only cheerful friends.
The grouches pull you down. (Keep this in mind if you are one of those grouches!) 
3. Keep learning:
Learn more about the computer, crafts, gardening, whatever...Never let the brain get idle. 'An idle mind is the devil's workshop.  
4. Enjoy the simple things.
5. Laugh often, long and loud.
Laugh until you gasp for breath. And if you have a friend who makes you laugh, spend lots and lots of time with HIM /HER.
6. The tears happen:
Endure, grieve, and move on. The only person who is with us our entire life, is ourselves.    LIVE while you are alive.
7. Surround yourself with what you love:
Whether it's family, pets, keepsakes, music, plants, hobbies, whatever. Your home is your refuge.
8. Cherish your health:
If it is good, preserve it. If it is unstable, improve it. If it is beyond what you can improve, get help.
9. Don't take guilt trips.
Take a trip to the mall, even to the next city, state, or another country, but NOT to where the guilt is.
10. Tell the people you love that you love them, at every opportunity.
I love you, my special friend.
11. Forgive now those who made you cry.
You might not get a second chance.
And if you don't send this to at least 4 people - who cares?
But do share this with someone.
Remember! Lost time can never be found. 
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