Renewable Revolution

Open Forum => General Discussion => Topic started by: AGelbert on November 17, 2013, 11:06:04 pm

Title: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on November 17, 2013, 11:06:04 pm
Colchester, Vermont First week of November, 2013

Rescue and Technical Rescue Squads—Amy Akerlind, Rescue Chief
· Colchester Rescue responded to eighteen calls and transported ten people to the hospital.
· Colchester Technical Rescue assisted Williston Fire Department with the rescue of a 2,600-pound draft
horse rescue that was stuck in a mud pond and had to be lifted with the help of an excavator!  :o

Now there's an interesting and innovative use for an excavator! (

Those Draft Horses are BIG!  :o
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: Surly1 on November 18, 2013, 06:50:58 pm
And they say nothing happens in Vermont!
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on November 18, 2013, 11:13:14 pm
Surly said,
And they say nothing happens in Vermont!

Well, Norman Rockwell sure ain't here anymore! The police are concerned because a group of young scam artists are going house to house knocking. If nobody answers, they get in through a window and take whatever they can carry. (
If someone answers, they offer to do yard work or chores for too high a price.  ;)  Last week there were several burglaries. There have been nearly 200 in the last year. Residents are urged to keep doors and windows always locked and report any suspicious activity to the police.

No, I did not report the egging of my front door to the police. We are working on another approach to that. (


Why Is Money Green in the United States?

Money is green in the United States, it is believed, because that color of ink was the most readily available when the paper currency design was introduced in 1929.

Prior to then, paper currency mainly used black ink with colored elements, but counterfeiters were able to recreate the colored portions too easily.  ;D

Another possible reason green ink was chosen was because it is more able to withstand heat and chemical exposure without changing appearance. Green ink might also have been chosen for US money because the color green was viewed as a symbol of strength and stability in the government’s credit.  ;) (

 More about money in the US:

•The $1 US Dollar (USD) bill lasts an average of just one year and 10 months in circulation. The $100 USD bill lasts about seven years and five months.

•Martha Washington is the only female to have her portrait appear on US currency. The wife of first US President George Washington appeared on the $1 USD Silver Certificates of 1886, 1891 and 1896.

•It would take about $2.5 million USD worth of pennies laid next to each other to reach across the width of the United States. ::)
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: Surly1 on November 19, 2013, 06:39:01 am

Why Is Money Green in the United States?

Money is green in the United States, it is believed, because that color of ink was the most readily available when the paper currency design was introduced in 1929.

Uh, no.

See this ( Lincoln began the practice of issuing green fiat.
The term greenback refers to legal tender, printed in green on one side and issued by the United States during the American Civil War which was backed not by the conventional gold or silver standard but by the credibility of the U.S. Government. It was largely what financed the Civil War while promoting and making the industrial revolution possible in the process.

When Lincoln assumed office he already understood that the outcome of the war would be largely determined by resources and understood the importance of raising enough funds to effectively carry out the war effort. With this in mind Lincoln on the day after his inauguration nominated Salmon P. Chase to be Secretary of the Treasury. As Secretary Chase alone was authorized to act on all matters pertaining to the country’s finances, Chase, like most everyone else at the time, underestimated the severity of the War in terms of its duration and cost.[2]
Confronted with the expenses of war, the Lincoln Administration sought loans from New York bankers, most of whom were fronts for, or connected to, European banks. Given the very high interest rates of 24 to 36 percent, President Lincoln refused to accept the terms of the loans and called for other solutions.[3] Colonel Edmund D. Taylor of Illinois made the suggestion that the U.S. government could issue its own money. Taylor is quoted as saying: "Just get Congress to pass a bill authorizing the printing of full legal tender treasury notes . . . and pay your soldiers with them and go ahead and win your war with them also. If you make them full legal tender . . . they will have the full sanction of the government and be just as good as any money; as Congress is given the express right by the Constitution."[3]
The idea to print Greenback based on the government's credibility was not Lincoln's idea originally, but with mounting pressure in Congress to accept the plan the President was quick to endorse it. The government could either print its own money or lead the country into perpetual debt at the hand of European banks.[4] On February 25, 1862, Congress passed the first Legal Tender Act, which authorized the printing of $150 million in Treasury notes.[5]
Printed on only one side with green ink, the bills were soon known as "greenbacks".[6] These United States Notes or "greenbacks" represented receipts for labor and goods delivered to the United States. They could be traded in the community for an equivalent value of goods or services.[3] The union used this money to keep the economy stable and help to pay for the war.

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on November 19, 2013, 02:20:46 pm
True. I remember reading about Lincoln's greenbacks. The European bankers (and ours too!) were going nuts about that. Some say that is the MAIN REASON he was eventually assassinated. He proved we didn't need financing "arrangements" that always benefit the 1%. They didn't like that, to put it mildly!

Apparently Wisegeek is referring to more recent developments in the 20th century when counterfeiting became a bigger problem.

I think somebody at Wisegeek made a similar comment about the greenbacks. You might go over there and set them straight. You can register and your comment will be attached to the question of why our currency is green permanently.  (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on November 22, 2013, 07:20:43 pm
For the Week of November 22, 2013

Police Department—Jennifer Morrison, Police Chief

• Colchester Police responded to 184 calls for service this week and stopped 47 vehicles for traffic violations. Six arrests were made during the week, including a thirty-nine-year-old male on charges of first-degree unlawful restraint, domestic assault, interference with access to emergency services, and sexual assault.

For more information about Colchester Police Department, please visit or call (802) 264-5556 (non-emergency).

Rescue and Technical Rescue Squads—Amy Akerlind, Rescue Chief

• Rescue responded to seventeen calls and transported eight people to the hospital.

• Colchester Technical Rescue had a quiet week.  (

For more information about Colchester Rescue, please visit or call (802) 264-5990.
Title: How Many People Rely on Rice for Food?
Post by: AGelbert on November 30, 2013, 12:19:43 am
How Many People Rely on Rice for Food?

More than half of the world’s people rely on rice for food, making it the most popular grain. It is estimated to be grown in 112 countries. The popularity of rice is thought to be because it contains more carbohydrates and protein than similar amounts of wheat or corn, so it can feed more people with the same quantity of crops. Also, there is a much lower likelihood of allergies or intolerance with rice than with other grains.  (

More about rice:

In sub-Saharan Africa, the percentage of people who rely on rice for food increased by 50% from 1990 to 2010, which was the fastest increase of any region.

An estimated 95% of the world’s rice crop is produced and eaten in Asia.

Since 1998, all white rice in the US has been enriched with folic acid, a vitamin that is thought to reduce birth defects. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that neural tube birth defects decreased by more than 25% after the fortification of grains began.




Nine Varieties: Jasmine, Wild, White, Pearl, Forbidden, Madagascar, Jade, Arborio, Basma

40 Rice Genotypes!  :o
Title: How Much Laundry Does the Average Family Do per Week?
Post by: AGelbert on December 02, 2013, 02:48:47 pm
How Much Laundry Does the Average Family Do per Week?

The average family in the United States does eight to 10 loads of laundry each week, with almost 70% of this work in married households being done by women. More than 20% of all water used by US households is estimated to be for doing laundry. A load of laundry takes an average of one hour and 27 minutes, which takes into account washing and drying. About 20% of laundry loads in the US are washed again because of dissatisfaction with the result, with men being more likely than women to rewash a load of laundry.
More about laundry:

The amount of laundry done at Walt Disney World in a single day is roughly equivalent to one load a day for 52 years.

The average container of laundry detergent in the US weighs about 7 pounds (3.18 kg).
There are more than 35,000 coin laundries in the US, and they made almost $5 billion US Dollars (USD) in 2012.
Agelbert NOTE: We do about one laundry load a MONTH. No I don't pay extra for my water bill. It is included in the lot rent. There is just no reason whatsoever for frequent laundry loads that cause such a waste of water, period.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 02, 2013, 09:39:43 pm
What is the Source of Aluminum Used to Make Cars?

Automobile manufacturing has been one of the main uses of aluminum, and about 90% of it that is used to make vehicles has been recycled.




An estimated one-third of all aluminum in the US is used for automobiles. Aluminum is much more lightweight than steel and typically is preferable for automobile parts such as wheel rims, radiators, cylinders and pistons. This metal's lighter weight allows vehicles to move more efficiently, using less fuel and emitting less pollution.

More about aluminum:

Recycling one aluminum can could save enough energy to burn a light for four hours.

The US had about 17.83 billion pounds (8.1 billion kg) of aluminum in 2009, with a total value of about $40 billion US Dollars (USD). About half of the total supply was made domestically, 30% had been recycled, and the rest had been imported.

The second most common use of aluminum in the US is in packaging. About one-fifth of this metal is used for items such as beverage cans and foil.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 17, 2013, 12:10:45 am
Where Did the Tomato Originate?

Costoluto tomatoes Agelbert NOTE: I've eaten the above. I knew them as home grown salad tomatoes. They are FAR more flavorful than the symmetrically shaped ones grown for grocery stores. If you ever get to taste one, you will know what I mean. Yummy!

The tomato is thought to have originated in South America and to have first been eaten by the ancient Aztecs. It was not introduced to Europe until the 1600s, when Spanish explorers brought tomatoes back from their travels.

Italy was the first European country to grow the tomato, followed by Spain.

It gained a reputation for being poisonous, :o but it was determined that the pewter plates that wealthy Europeans were using actually caused lead poisoning — the tomatoes absorbed lead from the plates before being consumed. (

The tomato did not make its way to the US until the late 1700s, and Thomas Jefferson is thought to have been one of the first tomato growers in the US, in 1781.

More about tomatoes:

The tomato belongs to the nightshade family, which contains poisonous plants. This association is also thought to have contributed to the tomato being thought of as poisonous.

More than 1.5 billion tons of tomatoes are produced worldwide every year. :o

Joseph Campbell invented and sold the first condensed tomato soup in 1897, when he discovered that tomatoes kept well after being canned.
Title: Why Did Pirates Wear An Eyepatch?
Post by: AGelbert on December 21, 2013, 01:04:11 am
Why Did Pirates Wear An Eyepatch if They Did Not Have an Injury? (

It is thought that the reason pirates would wear an eyepatch even if they did not have an eye injury was to help their eyes adjust to going back and forth between light and dark. It typically takes the eyes 25 minutes to adjust to seeing in the dark because they must regenerate photopigments, which send visual signals to the brain. Pirates would often have to go quickly from being in the dark below the decks of their ships to being on the sunlit ship decks. Wearing an eyepatch would allow a pirate to switch the eye patch to the other side when moving between locations and bypass the 25-minute adjustment period. (

More about pirates:

•Early 18th-century pirate Black Bart is thought to have captured more than 400 ships, the most of any pirate.

•Although legend has it that pirates would often bury treasure, historians claim that pirates typically used most of their stolen goods to purchase women and alcohol. In fact, entrepreneurs at popular ports were known to set up shops that catered to pirates.

•In the 1670s, pirate Henry Morgan served as governor of Jamaica, and he even helped prosecute other pirates during his administration.  ;D

Title: With only 4% of US farmland, California is one of the top agricultural producers
Post by: AGelbert on December 23, 2013, 11:55:30 pm
How Big Is California’s Agricultural Sector?

California’s agricultural sector is the largest in the US in terms of food production, with more than 450 types of crops produced in the state many of them being exclusive to the state. Total agricultural sales in California were more than $44 billion US Dollars (USD) in 2012, up 3% from 2011. Milk took in the most money, at more than $6 billion USD, followed by grapes and almonds at more than $4 billion USD each. In addition to having one of the top agricultural sectors in the US,

California also is the world's No. 5 supplier of agricultural commodities, including food and cotton fiber.

More about California agriculture:

•Only 4% of the farmland in the US is located in California, even though it is one of the top agricultural producers in the country.

•California is the only US state that produces almonds, and it is the top almond exporter in the world.

•About 90% of the wine made in the US is made in California, and the state is the No. 4 producer of wine worldwide.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 27, 2013, 07:42:56 pm


Ice Storm hits Agelbert. We had a full two inches of solid ice on EVERYTHING outside (except the tree branches that have a quarter inch of pretty, sparkly ice glaze encasing them).

The car was stuck in the driveway and required warming up and turing the wheels left and right to free from the ice. Nobody here has ever seen that thick of an ice layer. The town went nuts throwing sand around because the plows couldn't get down to the road surface and it was too cold for the salt to work for a couple of days. They did eventually throw a LOT of salt out there too.


Colchester’s Weekly Town News
For the Week Ending December 27, 2013
Colchester, Vermont Public Works Department—Bryan Osborne, Director Week ending December
In the aftermath of Winter Storm Gemini, we thought the following information would be of interest:
Storm duration: 60 hours from Friday noon to Monday noon
Weather conditions: icing and sub-freezing temperatures
Miles of public roads maintained: 90 miles
Miles of private roads maintained: 20 miles
Miles of sidewalks/paths maintained: 37 miles
Number of parking lots maintained: 6
Number of snow maintenance personnel available: 10
Maintenance staff overtime: 226 hours
Supervisor non-paid overtime: 38 hours
Fuel consumption: 924 gallons
Salt usage: 232 tons
For further information or comment, please call June Campbell at 264-5509.



BURLINGTON, Vt. —A death certificate indicates that the University of Vermont's associate director of residential life whose body was found in a house fire died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Kathleen Cook's body was found Thursday morning during an early morning fire at an on-campus home owned by the university.

The Burlington Free Press reports that the cause of the fire has not been released.
Cook had worked at the university for 16 years and was described as a devoted educator.

Dr. Kathleen M. Cook

Kathy Cook helped make UVM a welcoming place for everyone
By Katy Cardin, News Editor

Published: Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Dr. Kathleen Cook’s legacy at UVM began 24 years ago and will continue on as members of the UVM community remember her inspirational disposition and kind spirit.

Known more fondly as “Kathy” among her friends and colleagues, the 45-year-old associate director for Residential Life at the University died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound in her South Prospect Street home that caught on fire last Thursday, according to Police Services.

Cook began what would become a long stay at UVM when she completed her bachelor’s degree in 1991, followed by her master’s of education in 1995 and then her doctorate in education in 2010, according to a University-wide email sent by President Tom Sullivan and Vice Provost for Student Affairs Annie Stevens on Thursday.

“Kathy approached her work with students and student organizations with an infectious vitality that challenged individuals to learn from their experience while also building communities within UVM,”

Director of Student Life Pat Brown said. “Her friendliness and approachability was a pure invitation to students to seek her counsel. As a colleague and friend she will be missed.”

Cook was a Student Affairs staff member for the past 16 years. Before she was the associate director for Residential Life, she worked in the Department of Student Life as the assistant director for leadership programs, Brown said.

As president of the Inter Residential Association (IRA), senior Joe Oteng said he was able to work with Cook at various IRA events and often talked with her on campus.

Oteng said Cook was highly involved with and passionate about solving racial issues that occurred between Resident Assistants and campus residents.

“From a student perspective, I think her legacy will be in challenging students to think about how they relate to students of color in a predominantly white community like UVM, and how questions of identity and race can contribute to a better living community for everyone,” he said.

In fact, Vice President for Executive Operations Gary Derr sent a University-wide email on Thursday stating that Cook’s dissertation for her doctorate was titled “Diversity Training: Moving White Resident Assistants Forward or Backward in their Racial Identity Development.”

Residential Life staff member Carrie Wicks said she feels Cook truly embraced her position as associate director, and was able to make a positive impact on everyone she worked with because of that.

“She gave us freedom to be angry, strong, weak, creative, confused, lost and loved every step of the way,” Wicks said. “She cared deeply about everything she did and created...she was an innovated [sic] leader and woman. I admired her, we all did.”

Cook’s professional achievements did not stop at Residential Life. She was also the Area Coordinator for First-Year Experience for LGBTQ, working with first-years who identify as LGBTQ.

In their letter, Sullivan and Stevens extended condolences to the University community as well as to Cook’s family, friends and colleagues.

“A devoted educator, mentor, colleague, and friend, Kathy touched the lives of many students, staff, and faculty,” the Oct. 31 email read. “Her absence will be felt profoundly across the University.”
Following a status update on the University of Vermont Facebook page relaying the email sent by Sullivan and Stevens, multiple people responded by sharing their feelings and condolences.

“So sad to hear this news. Kathy was such a nice person. She has done a lot of good for UVM and students. Rest in peace friend,” William A Moultan III wrote.

A memorial service will be held for Cook at 4 p.m. Nov. 6 in Ira Allen Chapel.

By Katy Cardin

Agelbert NOTE: When we have a society where a person covers up their agony with a happy face, is consumed by that agony to the point of suicide, and then is lovingly remembered for HAVING SUCH A PEPPY, HAPPY FACE, ACCEPTING AND HELPING DISPOSITION (a big act!) by the society that destroyed her without a HINT that, uh, maybe there is something WRONG with our society if a person with a doctorate in PEOPLE skills offs herself, you know we are really in la la land denial about our failed society. Denial of flaws is the national sport. Vermonters are quite good at it.

That's why things continue to deteriorate. If people don't even recognize they have a society based, not individual based, problem, the problem will worsen. Vermont in general, and UVM academic SOCIETY in particular, FAILED to give Kathy Cook the strength she needed to go on living.  :( So it goes.

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 27, 2013, 08:20:10 pm


Did Shakespeare Really Invent New Words?

English playwright William Shakespeare invented new words in the 16th and 17th centuries that became commonly used in modern English, with an estimated 1,700 words whose origins are traced back to his works.

Shakespeare did not necessarily come up with completely new words, but rather he tended to add prefixes or suffixes to already established words or change nouns into verbs, or vice versa. Examples of words first used in Shakespeare’s works include assassination, disheartened, inaudible and uncomfortable.

Some historians believe that Shakespeare might not have been the one to invent the words but simply was the first to record words that previously had been used only orally.


More about William Shakespeare:

Shakespeare was an entrepreneur who made money off lucrative real estate investments. Some historians believe this is why he was able to spend so much time writing.

There is a period of seven years of Shakespeare’s life after the birth of his twins in 1585 during which there are no records of him and are referred to as “the lost years.” It is not known what he was doing at that time.

Shakespeare has no descendants because his only grandchild, a granddaughter named Elizabeth, died in 1670 without having children.

Worst Diseases in Shakespeare's London

From a disease standpoint, Shakespeare was living in arguably the worst place and time in history. Shakespeare's overcrowded, rat-infested, sexually promiscuous London, with raw sewage flowing in the Thames, was the hub for the nastiest diseases known to mankind. Here are the worst of the worst.

1. Plague
 It is little surprise that the plague was the most dreaded disease of Shakespeare's time. Carried by fleas living on the fur of rats, the plague swept through London in 1563, 1578-9, 1582, 1592-3, and 1603 (Singman, 52). The outbreaks in 1563 and 1603 were the most ferocious, each wiping out over one quarter of London's population.

Lucky Elizabethans would contract the basic bubonic plague with their odds of survival around fifty percent. Symptoms would include red, grossly inflamed and swollen lymph nodes, called buboes (hence the name bubonic), high fever, delirium, and convulsions.

However, if the bacterial infection spread to the lungs (pneumonic plague) or to the bloodstream (septicemic plague) the unfortunate victim would certainly die, usually within hours with symptoms too horrific to recount.

The Elizabethan pamphleteer Thomas Dekker wrote a chilling account of the chaos and despair brought by the plague:

Imagine then that all this while, Death (like a Spanish Leagar, or rather like stalking Tamberlaine) hath pitched his tents, (being nothing but a heape of winding sheets tacked together) in the sinfully-polluted Suburbes:

the Plague is Muster-maister and Marshall of the field: Burning Feauers, Boyles, Blaines, and Carbuncles, the Leaders, Lieutenants, Serieants, and Corporalls:

the maine Army consisting (like Dunkirke) of a mingle-mangle, viz. dumpish Mourners, merry Sextons, hungry Coffin-sellers, scrubbing Bearers, and nastie Graue-makers:

but indeed they are the Pioners of the Campe, that are imployed onely (like Moles) in casting up of earth and digging of trenches;

Feare and Trembling (the two catch-polles of Death) arrest every one: No parley will be graunted, no composition stood vpon, But the Allarum is strucke up, the Toxin ringes out for life, and no voice heard but Tue, Tue, Kill, Kill. (The Wonderful Yeare, 1603)

During the outbreak of 1592-93, the Crown ordered the complete closure of all theatres in London. Shakespeare, then working with Lord Strange’s Men at the Rose theatre, would have been in the midst of a run of his Henry VI history plays (Bradbrook, 65), and likely financially devastated by the edict.

Shakespeare mentions plague in several plays, including The Tempest (1.2.426), Timon of Athens (4.3.120), and King Lear:

But yet thou art my flesh, my blood, my daughter;
 Or rather a disease that's in my flesh,
 Which I must needs call mine: thou art a boil,
 A plague-sore, an embossed carbuncle,
 In my corrupted blood.
(2.4.242), Lear, describing his daughter, Goneril

Shakespeare also describes the act of searching out plague victims and quarantining them in Romeo and Juliet (5.2.7). Incidentally, plague is the indirect cause of the deaths of the star-cross'd lovers.

2. Smallpox
 One of the worst outbreaks of smallpox occurred two years before Shakespeare's birth, in 1562. Queen Elizabeth herself, then 29, was attacked by the virus that causes high fever, vomiting, excessive bleeding, and pus-filled scabs that leave deep pitted scars. Although the Queen recovered she was rendered completely bald and forced to wear an extra thick layer of make-up made from white lead and egg whites.

3. Syphilis
 Syphilis, one of the deadliest of all venereal diseases, spread rapidly throughout Europe in the 15th century. A current theory on the origin of the outbreak argues that Spaniards carried the disease home from the Americas in 1493. Elizabethans had many names for this foul malady; the most popular being the French pox, the Spanish sickness, the great pox, and simply, the pox.

 Without antibiotics, Elizabethans would have experienced the full effects of syphilis, which included raging fever (referred to as "burnt blood"), tortuous body aches, blindness, full body pustules, meningitis, insanity, and leaking heart valves, known today as aortic regurgitation. According to a document written in 1585 by the famed Elizabethan barber-surgeon William Clowes, the victims of syphilis were so numerous that London hospitals had no room for the "infinite multitude."


Interestingly, Shakespeare's most famous mention of disease: A plague on both your houses!" (Romeo and Juliet), was, in the original printing of the play (the first quarto), "A pox of your houses" (3.1.60).

 Shakespeare mentions syphilis often in his work and in Timon of Athens he alludes to the calamitous Elizabethan treatment of syphilis: the inhalation of vaporized mercury salts:

Give them diseases, leaving with thee their lust.
 Make use of thy salt hours: season the slaves.
 For tubs and baths; bring down rose-cheeked youth.
 To the tub-fast and the diet. (4.3)

4. Typhus
 Epidemics of louse-borne typhus ravaged London several times during the reigns of Elizabeth and James I. Crowded, filthy conditions and a near total lack of bathing made room for body lice, which, when scratched, would defecate on a person's skin. It would take just one minor cut or sore for the typhus infected feces to enter the victim's bloodstream, and soon high fever, delirium, and gangrenous sores would develop.

 The disease was a huge problem among prisoners. The poor wretches, most of them beggars, drunks, petty thieves and pamphleteers, who found themselves in the Newgate jail, would typically die before they could serve their full sentences. Shakespeare felt their pain:
If we mean to thrive and do good, break open the gaols and let out the prisoners. (2 Henry VI, 4.3.15)
Although we will likely never know what really caused Shakespeare's own death, a serious outbreak of typhus in 1616 lends credibility to the story that he succumbed to a fever.

5. Malaria
 Known to the Elizabethans as ague, Malaria was a common malady spread by the mosquitoes in the marshy Thames. The swampy theatre district of Southwark was always at risk. King James I had it; so too did Shakespeare’s friend, Michael Drayton. Without antimalarial medications, many Londoners would have experienced dreadful symptoms, including fever, unbearable chills, vomiting, enlarged liver, low blood pressure, seizures, and coma.

 Shakespeare's characters speak often of ague. A common belief was that the sun spread the fever by sucking up the vapors from the marshes. In The Tempest, Caliban describes the process while cursing Prospero:

All the infections that the sun sucks up
 From bogs, fens, flats, on Prosper fall and make him
 By inch-meal a disease!

So too does Hotspur in 1 Henry IV:
Worse than the sun in March,
 This praise doth nourish agues. (4.1)

The facts are mind-boggling, especially when you consider that London's population hovered around a mere 150,000 during Shakespeare's lifetime. It is little wonder that the average life expectancy was 35 years.

How to cite this article:
 Mabillard, Amanda. Worst Diseases in Shakespeare's London. Shakespeare Online. 20 Aug. 2000. < >.

Here's a humorous ten minute history of the English language which includes Shakespeare's contributions.  (
Title: Milky Way Galaxy Has Four Spiral Arms, New Study Confirms
Post by: AGelbert on January 06, 2014, 10:33:11 pm
Milky Way Galaxy Has Four Spiral Arms, New Study Confirms
Dec 29, 2013 by

A 12-year study published in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society has confirmed that our Milky Way Galaxy has four spiral arms, following years of debate that it has only two arms.

Galactic distribution of massive young stars and compact and ultra-compact H II regions with luminosities greater than 10^4 times that of the Sun. The map shows the positions of the complexes and individual sources as red and blue circles, respectively.

 The sizes of the markers give an indication of their luminosity, as depicted in the upper-right corner. The position of the Sun ( is shown by the small circle above the Galactic Centre . The two solid lines enclose the Galactic Center region that was excluded from survey due to problems with source confusion and distance determination.

The smaller of the two dot–dashed circles represents the locus of tangent points, while the larger circle shows the radius of the solar circle. Image credit: Urquhart JS et al / Robert Hurt, the Spitzer Science Center / Robert Benjamin.

“The Milky Way is our galactic home and studying its structure gives us a unique opportunity to understand how a very typical spiral galaxy works in terms of where stars are born and why,” said co-author Prof Melvin Hoare from the University of Leeds.

In the 50s, astronomers used radio telescopes to map the Milky Way. Their observations focused on clouds of gas in the Galaxy in which new stars are born, revealing four major spiral arms.

In 2008, scientists using NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope scoured our Galaxy for infrared light emitted by stars. They revealed about 110 million stars, but only evidence of two spiral arms.

The astronomers behind the new study used several radio telescopes to individually observe about 1,650 massive stars in the Galaxy. The distances and luminosities of these stars were calculated, revealing a distribution across four spiral arms.

“It isn’t a case of our results being right and those from Spitzer’s data being wrong – both surveys were looking for different things. Spitzer only sees much cooler, lower mass stars – stars like our Sun – which are much more numerous than the massive stars that we were targeting,” Prof Hoare said.

Massive stars are much less common than their lower mass counterparts because they only live for a short time – about 10 million years. The shorter lifetimes of massive stars means that they are only found in the arms in which they formed, which could explain the discrepancy in the number of galactic arms that different research teams have claimed.

“Lower mass stars live much longer than massive stars and rotate around our Galaxy many times, spreading out in the disc. The gravitational pull in the two stellar arms that Spitzer revealed is enough to pile up the majority of stars in those arms, but not in the other two. However, the gas is compressed enough in all four arms to lead to massive star formation,” Prof Hoare said.

“It’s exciting that we are able to use the distribution of young massive stars to probe the structure of the Milky Way and match the most intense region of star formation with a model with four spiral arms,” said lead author Dr James Urquhart of the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany.
Urquhart JS et al. The RMS survey: galactic distribution of massive star formation. MNRAS 437 (2): 1791-1807; doi: 10.1093/mnras/stt2006
Title: Mekong River Mystery: Fireballs caused, according to legend, by a Mythical Snake
Post by: AGelbert on January 20, 2014, 07:36:35 pm
Is There a River In Thailand that Emits Fireballs?  ???

There is a river in Thailand that emits fireballs, referred to as Naga’s Fireballs. The phenomenon takes place in the Nong Khai province along the Mekong River has occurred each year for hundreds of years.

On the 11th lunar month, coinciding with the end of the Buddhist Lent, pink, red and orange fireballs jump from the river into the sky for about three days, and the occasion is celebrated with a festival. Legend states that the fireballs are caused by a mythical serpent creature from the river, but scientists believe they could be the result of heated gas being released from decomposed plants and animals on the bottom of the river.

More about the Mekong River:

The Mekong River runs for 2,610 miles (4,200 km) in Southeast Asia, from China to Vietnam.
Fish from this river are estimated to provide the main source of protein for nearly 50 million people in Southeast Asia.

The Mekong River Commission has stated that building hydroelectric dams in the river would provide as much as 8% of the area’s energy needs by 2025, but critics argue that dams could cut the fish supply by as much as half.
Title: Mystery Rock 'Appears' in Front of Mars Rover
Post by: AGelbert on January 20, 2014, 07:41:52 pm
Mystery Rock 'Appears' in Front of Mars Rover  :o

 Jan 17, 2014 05:31 AM ET  //  by  Ian O'Neill

After a decade of exploring the Martian surface, the scientists overseeing veteran rover Opportunity thought they’d seen it all. That was until a rock mysteriously “appeared” a few feet in front of the six wheeled rover a few days ago.(

News of the errant rock was announced by NASA Mars Exploration Rover lead scientist Steve Squyres of Cornell University at a special NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory “10 years of roving Mars” event at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), Pasadena, Calif., on Thursday night. The science star-studded public event was held in celebration of the decade since twin rovers Spirit and Opportunity landed on the Red Planet in January 2004.

PHOTOS: Alien Robots That Left Their Mark on Mars

While chronicling the scientific discoveries made by both rovers over the years, Squyres discussed the recent finding of suspected gypsum near the rim of Endeavour Crater — a region of Meridiani Planum that Opportunity has been studying since 2011 — and the discovery of clays that likely formed in a pH-neutral wet environment in Mars past. While these discoveries have been nothing short of groundbreaking, Squyres shared the Mars rover’s team’s excitement for that one strange rock, exclaiming: “Mars keeps throwing new stuff at us!”

In a comparison of recent photographs captured by the rover’s panoramic camera, or Pancam, on sol 3528 of the mission, only bare bedrock can be seen. But on sol 3540, a fist-sized rock had appeared (raw Pancam images can be found in the mission archive). MER scientists promptly nicknamed the object “Pinnacle Island.”

“It’s about the size of a jelly doughnut,”
Squyres told Discovery News. “It was a total surprise, we were like ‘wait a second, that wasn’t there before, it can’t be right. Oh my god! It wasn’t there before!’ We were absolutely startled.”

But the rover didn’t roll over that area, so where did Pinnacle Island come from?     ???

A comparison of two raw Pancam photographs from sols 3528 and 3540 of Opportunity's mission (a sol is a Martian day). Notice the "jelly doughnut"-sized rock in the center of the photograph to the right. Minor adjustments for brightness and contrast.
NASA/JPL-Caltech (

If you liked that rock, you'll LOVE my NEXT trick...
Title: Vermont Stories and Historical Gossip BEFORE GLOBAL WARMING
Post by: AGelbert on January 29, 2014, 08:28:23 pm

Vermont Stories and Historical Gossip BEFORE GLOBAL WARMING.  (

Although it may not be obvious to the casual observer, the population of the State of Vermont can be sorted into two distinct types:

1.Those people whose families have lived in Vermont since it was settled and whose family folklore includes tales of the great Republic of Vermont, when Vermont was an Independent Country, and who have never quite forgiven Ethan Allen for agreeing to join the Union despite all of his other fine accomplishments. These people, who will subsequently be referred to as "Native Vermonters", are hardy and hard working, straightforward and straight talking, and are the foundation of everything that makes Vermont great. They are also almost, but not quite, completely invisible in the current Vermont landscape.

2.Everyone else, who will subsequently be referred to as "Flatlanders." Flatlanders are sometimes called "New Yorkers" by older Native Vermonters.

Vermont has always had a population of Flatlanders: those who've moved to Vermont from somewhere else because Vermont "is such a nice place." In recent years those who pay attention to the media might conclude that Flatlanders have taken over the entire State. It is true that important Towns like Montpelier (the State capital) and Burlington (a self-styled major metropolitan city) are almost, but not quite, exclusively populated by Flatlanders.

Native Vermonters quite sensibly regard the current large numbers of Flatlanders to be a temporary phenomenon and have the attitude of "This Too Shall Pass." Like mud season.  ;D They know that as soon as it appears to the Flatlanders that Vermont has somehow, despite all their progressive efforts (, become "just like everywhere else", they will move away in droves. Perhaps leaving behind a few people, who might after a few generations be considered "Newcomers"  ;)  to Vermont by the Natives and occupy that wide gray area between the two solitudes, so to speak.

This book reveals for the first time the true History of Vermont as maintained by Native Vermonters.  8)  When the influx of Flatlanders started to become chronic Native Vermonters agreed in a series of Town Meetings to conceal some of the more interesting episodes of Vermont History by the simple and expedient method of denying knowledge of any such thing and implying that the questioner was a few cows short of a herd.  ;D  This tactic was incredibly successful and centuries of Vermont History were hidden this way. The truth of this remarkable assertion can be demonstrated at any time by finding an older person in Vermont (Flatlanders without exception move to Florida once their joints reach a certain age and temperature) and asking that person whether he or she has heard of the events described in this book. The answer will invariably be "No." followed by something on the order of "What's the weather like on the planet you come from?"   ;D

How did the author, who moved to Vermont from California, learn of this secret history? The answer is that he inadvertently acquired two undeniable attributes of Native Vermontership as follows:

1.He purchased property in a Town in which the terrain goes uphill in both directions. (Admittedly this is not a difficult feat in Vermont.) (

2.He built and occupied a one-room log cabin with just a wood stove and without utility power for an entire Vermont winter (11.5 months).  ( Actually he did this for two entire Vermont winters in a row but no one noticed because it's extremely difficult for anyone, even Native Vermonters, to determine when one Vermont winter ends and the next one begins.  ;D

One day after walking uphill (of course  ( in the snow for hours into Town for a breakfast of pancakes and maple syrup the other people in the Town Restaurant began to talk about strange events in his presence. After several more days of walking uphill (of course  ( in the snow for hours into Town for a breakfast of pancakes and maple syrup the author began to piece together the incredible Secret History of Vermont.  ;)

Why is the author willing to reveal these incredible truths? The answer is that if he publishes a book and someone actually buys it then all those breakfasts become tax-deductible as a research expense. Free food!  ( Everyone has their price when it comes to betraying deep secrets. That's mine.  ( (


The word "Vermont" derives from Olde Neanderthale but modern day scholars are divided as to its precise meaning. Some say that it comes from "ver mont" which in Olde Neanderthale means "Heaven on Earth" but others insist that it really comes from "verm ont" which means "Any place that if you stay there during the winter you must have rocks in your head." Olde Neanderthale is a very pithy language.

Back in the days when the U.S. Federal Government was disorganized and inefficient (1789 to date) it often had difficulty maintaining an adequate supply of currency.

The problem with cows is that they are large and difficult to store.

The problem of keeping the paddlewheel boats running during the winter was solved in a typical Vermont fashion. Instead of trying to keep the water channels open, the paddlewheels were affixed with chains, the entire boat was mounted on sled runners, and a snowplow was attached to the front. As a result, the paddlewheel boats ran considerably faster on the ice during the winter than they did in the water during the summer. The summer slowdown was tolerated because it typically only lasted 15 days.

Vermont is unique among the states in that it has two completely independent State governments. The first, known as the Vermont State Government, has no bureaucrats, has levied no taxes, and is of the opinion that it isn't the government's place to go around telling people what to do. It has the highest approval ratings of any governmental organization in the observed universe. The other is known as the Montpelier Legislature whose motto is, "Pass six unenforceable regulations before breakfast."

Because it is a major cause of pain and suffering the Montpelier Legislature occasionally proposes a bill outlawing Death and is puzzled each time when the idea is solidly rejected by the citizens. This is because the citizens have seen that Death is practically the only way a member of the Montpelier Legislature can be persuaded to give up his or her seat.

During the right time of year a visitor to Vermont cannot help but to be astonished at the amount of acreage devoted to growing corn. A simple calculation shows that during its 15 day growing season Vermont grows enough corn to feed all of Asia and Africa for several years. Where does all this corn go?

Some of it is fed to cows. Cows are no longer legal tender but cows give milk that can be made into Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream which is legal tender in most parts of the world. Some of the corn is converted into whisky most of which is discretely exported to foreign places like Kentucky and Tennessee.

The Vermont Libertarian Mountain Lion

Unlike moose, which are officially everywhere, mountain lions officially don't exist. There hasn't been a proved sighting of a mountain lion by a certified official for over a hundred years. Occasionally someone will claim they've seen a mountain lion, or catamount as they're sometimes called by Native Vermonters, but the evidence is never enough to survive the so-called trial by immersion in a Montpelier manure pit.

The Vermont Tin Pecker

The absence of the usual clue, warmer weather, makes it difficult to tell when spring is coming to Vermont. Nevertheless there are a few signs well known to all Vermonters. When people all over the State are awakened half an hour before the alarm clock by the vigorous percussion of a diamond-hard beak on chimney pipe or roof flashing then you can tell that the springtime mating season of the Vermont Tin Pecker has begun.

Radiocarbon Dating

It's not that Vermont isn't full of jokers. (Drive a car with out-of-state plates and ask directions from someone in Vermont sometime. Please!) It's just that the conclusion that every single Vermont archaeology student independently decides to pull exactly the same prank is one that only an Archaeology Professor or Radiocarbon Lab Owner would come to.

The other conclusion, that the canning jar racks in grandma's basement are 30,000 years old, is one of those things that's so completely and totally obvious that the maintainers of the Secret History don't have the slightest worry of it ever being discovered (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: Surly1 on January 30, 2014, 06:02:07 am
Vermont humor is pretty damned dry, isn't it?
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 30, 2014, 02:19:07 pm
YEP. This place is probably where the term "deadpan" came from.  ;D
Title: Foucault Pendulum
Post by: AGelbert on February 09, 2014, 07:21:29 pm
Foucault Pendulum

This pendulum provides visual proof of the Earth's rotation. Designed by Jean Leon Foucault in 1851, it is called the Foucault (foo-koh) Pendulum.

Pendulum: a body suspended from a fixed point so as to swing freely to and fro under the action of gravity.

How does the Foucault Pendulum work?
 Once the pendulum is set in motion, it continues to swing back and forth in a vertical plane defined by the track of the ball and cable.

The direction of swing is constant. Although gravity is pulling down on the ball and tension in the cable is holding it up, there is no force acting to change the direction of swing.

Why does it appear to be moving in a circle?
 The apparent change in direction of swing is related to the perspective of the observer. Because no force is acting to change the direction of swing, it doesn't change. Instead, the floor, the observer, and the Earth's surface are turning beneath the pendulum.

The Earth's spin is essential to life.
 Night and day, darkness and light, cooling and warming- these are the result of the spinning Earth.

The Earth's spin contributes to the movement of ocean and wind currents, which in turn affect climate, weather, food production, and our everyday lives.

The pendulum's direction of swing does not spin with the Earth.
 The hardware holding the pendulum is attached to the roof of the Museum and moves with the Earth. But with flexible wire for support, the pendulum swings back and forth in the same plane.

The pendulum is not a perpetual motion machine.
 Because of air friction and gravity the pendulum would eventually stop swinging, but a magnet encircling the cable pulls on the cable with each swing. Electric current controlling the magnetism is turned on and off with each swing of the pendulum.

The pendulum is not a clock.
 However, the time it takes to go around the circle is predictable. Imagine yourself hovering above the Earth's axis at the North or South Pole. The Earth below appears to be spinning like a merry-go-round. The pendulum would complete the circle in 24 hours.

Now imagine yourself hovering above the equator.
 The Earth appears to be rolling like a barrel. As the pendulum swings, it does not move around the circle at all. Latitude determines the length of time required for a complete trip around the circle. Here in San Diego, the pendulum makes its way around the circle in 44½ hours.

I don't know about you but this stuff fascinates me.  ;D
Title: Doomstead Diner INFECTED! Avoid Until Further Advised!
Post by: AGelbert on February 23, 2014, 03:40:55 pm
I am in the process of eliminating ALL links to the Doomstead Diner. It is infected with a HIGH RISK type Trojan virus.  ???   :P >:(

Title: The Ax falls at IBM
Post by: AGelbert on February 27, 2014, 07:31:44 pm
IBM  ------->   Big (Butcher) Blue

Weeks of speculation and nervous anticipation of expected job cuts at IBM’s Essex Junction facility ended Thursday when Gov. Peter Shumlin confirmed layoffs were beginning, drawing a sharp response from his political opposition.

“I have been advised by leadership at the IBM Vermont plant in Essex Junction of layoff notifications there as part of a global workforce reduction,” Shumlin said in a statement sent at 9:40 a.m.

He said he was told the number of workers affected was about one-third the number let go in June,, “although we will not know the exact number of affected workers until the process is completed and a state notice is filed by the company next month,” Shumlin’s statement said. The June layoff affected 419 workers.
Title: Why you shouldn't be too near a building fire...
Post by: AGelbert on February 28, 2014, 03:22:47 pm

Title: Cat Videos are good or you. REALLY!
Post by: AGelbert on May 02, 2014, 10:39:22 pm
Finally, science confirms what we all already knew in our hearts—videos of cats unrolling (and then re-rolling) toilet paper are good for our brain health!  (

In fact, anything that makes us laugh is good for our brains. According to new research from Loma Linda University in Southern California, a big fit of laughter (you know, the kind where you think you might pee your pants?) gives your brain a great workout.

For the study, researchers measured brain activity in participants while they watched a laughter-inducing 20-minute video. And from it, they pinpointed the optimal laugh for the brain—30-40 hertz frequency, which matches brain wave frequencies seen in people who reach a “true state of meditation.”

“This allows for the subjective feeling states of being able to think more clearly and have more integrative thoughts,” explains study co-author Lee Berk. “This is of great value to individuals who need or want to revisit, reorganize, or rearrange various aspects of their lives or experiences, to make them feel whole or more focused.”

And that’s not all. The participants who watched the funny video also scored higher on memory tests than those who didn’t watch it, and they also had a significant decrease in cortisol, a stress hormone that can lead to high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes.

And on that note, have you seen the video of the cat in a shark costume on a Roomba? (at link) (You’re welcome!).

Read more:
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 11, 2014, 02:12:37 am
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 11, 2014, 02:20:44 am
Title: Does Sound Travel at the Same Speed Through Different Materials?
Post by: AGelbert on May 18, 2014, 11:21:01 pm
Does Sound Travel at the Same Speed Through Different Materials?‏   ???

Sound travels 17 times faster when going through metal than it does when
going through air.

Sound is the result of molecules interacting or disturbing one another, so
sound does not travel at the same speed through different materials because
there are varying amounts of room between the molecules of different types
of materials. For example, sound travels about 17 times faster when going
through metal than it does through air — more than 10,000 mph (16,093
km/h) through metal, compared with about 761 mph (1,224 km/h) through air.
In water, sound travels about four times faster than through air, at about
3,000 mph (4,828 km/h). Sound travels more slowly through air because air
consists mainly of nitrogen and oxygen, whose molecules are not arranged as
rigidly as those in materials such as water or steel. The more rigidity in
a material, the faster sound travels because the molecules interact with
one another more.

Read More:
Title: A month in the springtime in Colchester, Vermont: Police Report
Post by: AGelbert on May 24, 2014, 12:02:08 am
Police Department—Jennifer Morrison, Police Chief

Numbers and Facts

In the past month, we have responded to over 900 calls for service, and we had 422 contacts through motor vehicle stops. We arrested 17 people ( for a variety of crimes, including DUI, domestic assault, reckless endangerment, unlawful restraint, and more.

The busiest days of the week for calls for service were Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. The most common reasons for calls this month were suspicious circumstances (, public or medical assists (, motor vehicle crashes, and motor vehicle complaints.

Our marine unit is back on the water. As the weather warms, we expect activity on the lake to pick up significantly.

Community Outreach Activities

In the past month, CPD has participated in the following: mock crash at the high school,
**** Aggression Defense class #2 of 2014 (, Drug Take Back Day, child safety seat inspections, special traffic details, and more.

For further information or to comment, please call Linda Kingston at 264-5509.
Title: Now these look like homey homes for happy homebodies!
Post by: AGelbert on May 24, 2014, 12:15:33 am
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 25, 2014, 06:47:16 pm
What Note Do Most American Car Horns Make? (


The note most American car horns make has been F sharp or A sharp since the mid-1960s. Prior to that, the first car horns for American vehicles had been in the notes of C or E flat since the 1910s. The first cars in the US in the late 1800s merely had bells until there was a demand for a device that produced a louder alert. The notes of car horns are determined by researching which ones are able to be heard over traffic and other background automobile operating sounds, while still being pleasant  ::)  enough to the ear.

More about car horns:

•Car horns must measure at least 93 decibels, or just louder than an average lawnmower engine, by law in Japan, South Korea, and European Union countries.

•One of the first car horns to gain popularity in the US was known as the Gabriel, a multi-tone horn inspired by the sounds of a trombone.

•In France, it is more common to flash headlights to alert other vehicles or pedestrians rather than using the horn.

Title: Which City Bikes the Most to Work?
Post by: AGelbert on June 15, 2014, 08:56:35 pm
Which City Bikes the Most to Work?

Portland, Oregon, is the city that bikes the most to work among large US cities, with about 6.1% of the city’s residents cycling to commute. The average bicycle commuting rate for all cities in the US is less than 1%. Portland is thought to have a high biking rate because of changes that the city has made to improve safety and convenience for cyclists on its roads. Washington, DC, and Minneapolis, Minnesota, have made similar changes.   ;D

More about bicycle commuting:

•Workers age 16 through 24 are the group most likely to bike to work in the US, at around 1%, and those older than 55 are the least likely, at 0.3%.

More than two times as many men ride a bike to work  :o, in comparison with women, at 0.8% of US men cycling to work and 0.3% of women doing so.

•People who earn graduate or professional degrees have the highest rates of biking to work, at about 0.9%. (

Four reasons why Portland became a cyclists’ utopia

By Heather Smith
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on July 06, 2014, 07:10:06 pm
MONSTER GMO Salmon run?  ??? NO!  ;D
Three Boeing 737 fuselages spilled down a steep slope into the Clark Fork River in Western Montana.
Photo credit: Brock Sarbeck/Wiley E. Waters Whitewater Rafting

HINT...   :P

Nineteen railcars derailed Thursday about 10 miles west of Alberton, MT spilling three Boeing 737 fuselages down a steep slope into the Clark Fork River in Western Montana. Three other fuselages fell off but stayed on land.

Montana Rail Link spokeswoman Lynda Frost said Saturday that it’s unclear the type of challenge involved in removing the fuselages from the steep slope because it’s the first time the company has faced such a task.

No one was injured and the cause of the derailment is under investigation.

Though this derailment doesn’t quite compare to the impact on the environment like other derailments reported by EcoWatch, it clearly shows the challenges faced by increased use of rail. A recent report from Climate Central shows how climate change could lead to more train derailment. With temperatures in the U.S. rising by as much as 9 degrees, train tracks are vulnerable to “sun kinks,” or buckling as a result of extreme heat, according to the report.
Post by: AGelbert on July 17, 2014, 11:23:50 pm

The striking abyss is believed to be up to 80 meters wide although its depth has not been estimated yet. A scientific team sent to investigate the hole was due to arrive at the scene on Wednesday, reports Siberian Times.

The cause of its sudden appearance in the remote Siberian land is not yet known, although one scientific claim, cited by the newspaper, is that global warming may be to blame.

There is additional speculation that the giant hole – that appeared close to a forest some 30 kilometers from Yamal's biggest gas field Bovanenkovo – could be caused by a space object – possibly a meteorite – striking earth. It could also be a sinkhole caused by collapsing rock beneath the hole caused by an unknown reason.

Startled helicopter passengers told their pilot to loiter over the mysterious crater as they came by the mind-blowing hole. The passengers were cited as saying the hole was big enough for their helicopter – and 18 meter long Mi8 – to have comfortably enter the crater without touching the sides.

The most deadly meteor impact of modern times known as "The Tunguska air burst" – took place in the region in 1908. The impact flattened vast swathes of forest over a 2,000 square kilometer area.

No streak in the sky, flash of explosion or seismic events has been recorded in the recent time, but the hole has, nonetheless appeared.
Title: Nature Fights BACK! Biosphere Recruits Texas Tick to Stop Meat Eating Humans!
Post by: AGelbert on August 17, 2014, 03:07:03 pm
This Bug’s Bite Can Turn You Into a Vegetarian  :o

A tick causes the humans it bites to become allergic to red meat. (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on August 17, 2014, 08:43:54 pm
What is the World’s Most Commonly Traded Spice? (

Piper nigrum plant 

Black pepper
is the world’s most commonly traded spice, with the United States being the leading importer and consumer of the spice. It comes from the peppercorn fruit on the vine of the Piper nigrum.

While the Piper nigrum plant is indigenous to South India, black pepper’s leading producer is Vietnam, followed by India, Indonesia, and Brazil. Black pepper is a component of a wide range of ethnic cuisines to add a pungent or hot flavor. Its popularity may be attributed to the long history of the spice, which dates back to 2000 BCE; however, black pepper was once so rare, it was only used by the very wealthy and was even considered a form of currency in the Middle Ages.

More about spices:

•India is the leading producer, consumer, and exporter of spices overall worldwide.

•Black pepper causes sneezing because it contains a chemical known as piperine, which irritates the nerves inside the nose.


•Saffron, the dried threads from the crocus flower, is the most expensive spice in the world--it has an average price of $1,500 US Dollars (USD) per pound (.45 kg), which requires an entire acre of land and thousands of flowers to be produced.
Title: Is There Such a Thing as Blue Lava?
Post by: AGelbert on August 23, 2014, 11:43:15 pm
Is There Such a Thing as Blue Lava? ???

Spectacular blue lava flows at this Indonesian volcano.

Indonesia' Kawah Ijen Volcano produces blue lava, which glows at night. This is due to the combustion of sulfuric gases when they meet air temperatures exceeding 239 degrees Fahreneit (115 degrees Celsius). The volcano is part of a group of stratovolcanoes—volcanoes built up by layers of hardened ash, lava, and other materials—called the Ijen volcano complex. Since the volcano produces large amounts of sulfur, and despite the high-level of toxicity in the area, sulfur mining takes place in the area.

More about volcanoes:

•Lava flows can reach more that 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit (1,250 Celsius).

•Italy's Mt. Etna is supposedly the world's oldest volcano with its first recorded eruption in 1500 BC. The world's youngest volcano located in Paricutin, Mexico with its first eruption in February 1943.

•The majority of the world's volcanoes, nearly 90%, exist within the Ring of Fire that runs along the edges of the Pacific Ocean.


Title: Bárðarbunga - And So Begins The Gas Plume
Post by: AGelbert on September 02, 2014, 08:22:18 pm

Bárðarbunga - And So Begins The Gas Plume (x3)
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on September 12, 2014, 05:55:10 pm
 ( Rock Slams into Nicaragua, Leaves Crater
Posted on September 9, 2014

A thunderous explosion shook the crowded Nicaraguan capital of Managua late Saturday, leaving a large crater thought to be caused by a small meteorite. In a vast city of 1.2 million people, it’s amazing it did not cause any known injuries. It impacted near the international airport and left a crater measuring 39 feet (12 meters) across.  :o

Authorities in Nicaragua believe it was a piece of the small asteroid “2014 RC,” which passed very close to Earth this past Sunday. It was estimated to be about 65 feet (20 meters) across, or roughly the size of a house. “We are convinced that this was a meteorite. We have seen the crater from the impact,” said Wilfredo Strauss of the Seismic Institute.

Watch the meteor stream across the night sky:

The meteorite landed in a wooded area near the airport around midnight and the impact was so violent that it registered on tools the Seismic Institute uses to measure earthquakes. “You can see two waves: first, a small seismic wave when the meteorite hit earth, and then another stronger one, which is the impact of the sound,” Strauss said.

People living near the crater told local media they heard an explosion and saw liquid, sand and dust being cast into the atmosphere, leaving a burning smell.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on September 16, 2014, 06:36:37 pm
For Buddhists in particular and any other humans (like myself  ;D ) who are fascinated by the diversity of human cultures: ENJOY!

Renovation programme underway at Labrang Monastery
Updated: 2014-09-14 11:02 
Photo taken on Sept. 2, 2014 shows the Labrang Monastery in Xiahe county of Gannan Tibetan autonomous prefecture in Northwest China's Gansu province.

The Labrang Monastery, a major Tibetan Buddhism monastery in China, is undergoing the largest renovation programme since its establishment in 1709.

The renovation, which started in April 2013, is intended to replace stone and wooden structures within the monastery that had been worn down by the years.

The Labrang Monastery remains open to the public during the renovation programme. It will make an application for the listing of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites at the end of the whole renovation, which takes at least another four years.[Photo/Xinhua]

A Tibetan Buddhism believer visits the Labrang Monastery in Xiahe county of Gannan Tibetan autonomous prefecture in Northwest China's Gansu province, Sept. 2, 2014. [Photo/Xinhua]

A Tibetan Buddhism believer visits a prayer wheel corridor at the Labrang Monastery in Xiahe county of Gannan Tibetan autonomous prefecture in Northwest China's Gansu province, Sept. 2, 2014. [Photo/Xinhua]

A worker repairs a wooden structure inside the residence of the first Jamyang Shepa, founder of the Labrang Monastery, in Xiahe county of Gannan Tibetan autonomous prefecture in Northwest China's Gansu province, Sept. 2, 2014. [Photo/Xinhua]

A Tibetan Buddhist monk sits near the site of a renovation programme at the residence of the first Jamyang Shepa, founder of the Labrang Monastery, in Xiahe county of Gannan Tibetan autonomous prefecture in Northwest China's Gansu province, Sept. 2, 2014. [Photo/Xinhua]

Photo taken on Sept. 2, 2014 shows the site of a renovation programme at the residence of the first Jamyang Shepa, founder of the Labrang Monastery, in Xiahe county of Gannan Tibetan autonomous prefecture in Northwest China's Gansu province. [Photo/Xinhua]

Workers repair wooden structures inside the residence of the first Jamyang Shepa, founder of the Labrang Monastery, in Xiahe county of Gannan Tibetan autonomous prefecture in Northwest China's Gansu province, Sept. 2, 2014. [Photo/Xinhua]

Photo taken on Sept. 2, 2014 shows wooden architectural parts inside the residence of the first Jamyang Shepa, founder of the Labrang Monastery, in Xiahe county of Gannan Tibetan autonomous prefecture in Northwest China's Gansu province. [Photo/Xinhua]

Photo taken on Sept. 2, 2014 shows wood-plate paintings inside the residence of the first Jamyang Shepa, founder of the Labrang Monastery, in Xiahe county of Gannan Tibetan autonomous prefecture in Northwest China's Gansu province. [Photo/Xinhua] (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on September 16, 2014, 06:52:58 pm
A migrant life in a movable home
After a day without landing a job, a dejected Xu watches his daughter. For migrant families, having a livelihood is basically a matter of luck. [Photo/CFP]
Two children and their mom watch cartoons on a VCD player powered by the van's battery in the cramped vehicle. The privilege of watching a cartoon can last for only one hour due to the limited capacity of the battery. [Photo/CFP]

Agelbert NOTE: I admire the grit of these folks. They are DETERMINED to make it and tough it out no matter the adversity and hardships they face to make ends meet.  (
Title: Lava Flow ON TOP OF A GLACIER!
Post by: AGelbert on September 17, 2014, 12:46:31 am
FAR OUT!   :o     ( (

Video interview and MANY pictures at link below:
Tue Sep 16, 2014 at 12:25 AM PDT.

Bárðarbunga: Not Parrying Any Questions - An Interview With Þorbjörg Ágústsdóttir

Rei (
Title: Mammoth filmed by NAZI on death march?
Post by: AGelbert on September 30, 2014, 12:36:39 am
Mammoth filmed by NAZI on death march?
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 04, 2014, 11:40:59 pm
Massive 'ocean' discovered towards Earth's core  :o
19:00 12 June 2014 by Andy Coghlan
A reservoir of water three times the volume of all the oceans :o has been discovered deep beneath the Earth's surface. The finding could help explain where Earth's seas came from.

The water is hidden inside a blue rock called ringwoodite that lies 700 kilometres underground in the mantle, the layer of hot rock between Earth's surface and its core.

The huge size of the reservoir throws new light on the origin of Earth's water. Some geologists think water arrived in comets as they struck the planet, but the new discovery supports an alternative idea that the oceans gradually oozed out of the interior of the early Earth.


"It's good evidence the Earth's water came from within," says Steven Jacobsen of Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. The hidden water could also act as a buffer for the oceans on the surface, explaining why they have stayed the same size for millions of years.

Pinging the planet

Jacobsen's team used 2000 seismometers to study the seismic waves generated by more than 500 earthquakes. These waves move throughout Earth's interior, including the core, and can be detected at the surface. "They make the Earth ring like a bell for days afterwards," says Jacobsen.
By measuring the speed of the waves at different depths, the team could figure out which types of rocks the waves were passing through. The water layer revealed itself because the waves slowed down, as it takes them longer to get through soggy rock than dry rock.

Jacobsen worked out in advance what would happen to the waves if water-containing ringwoodite was present. He grew ringwoodite in his lab, and exposed samples of it to massive pressures and temperatures matching those at 700 kilometres down.

Sure enough, they found signs of wet ringwoodite in the transition zone 700 kilometres down, which divides the upper and lower regions of the mantle. At that depth, the pressures and temperatures are just right to squeeze the water out of the ringwoodite. "It's rock with water along the boundaries between the grains, almost as if they're sweating," says Jacobsen.

Damp down there

Jacobsen's finding supports a recent study by Graham Pearson of the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada. Pearson studied a diamond from the transition zone that had been carried to the surface in a volcano, and found that it contained water-bearing ringwoodite, the first strong evidence that there was lots of water in the transition zone (Nature,

"Since our initial report of hydrous ringwoodite, we've found another ringwoodite crystal, also containing water, so the evidence is now very strong," says Pearson.

So far, Jacobsen only has evidence that the watery rock sits beneath the US. He now wants to find out if it wraps around the entire planet.

"We should be grateful for this deep reservoir," says Jacobsen. "If it wasn't there, it would be on the surface of the Earth, and mountain tops would be the only land poking out."

Journal reference: Science, DOI: 10.1126/science.1253358

"In the six hundredth year of Noah's life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened. And the rain was upon the earth forty days and forty nights."
(Gen 7:11-12 KJV)
( (

Title: IBM sells loss generating Vermont plant to Ayrabs! LOL!
Post by: AGelbert on October 20, 2014, 03:48:11 pm
IBM Paying Globalfoundries $1.5 Billion to Take Unit in Retreat From Chips


IBM's Big Blues »

“IBM has always taken the long view of its business strategy  ;), continuously reinventing (  ( ,” Tom Rosamilia, IBM’s senior vice president of the systems and technology group and integrated supply chain, said in a blog post today, calling the deal “one more step in the company’s reinvention.”  (

The cash portion paid to Globalfoundries will be partially offset by $200 million of working capital. IBM’s third-quarter charge will account for the cash payment and a $2.4 billion non-cash writedown on the business.

After months of on-again, off-again talks, IBM Chief Executive Officer Ginni Rometty... Read More

Retaining Jobs ( Agelbert NOTE: See EMPTY PROMISES (LEGAL Predatory Limited Liability employee shafting for translation...) 

Globalfoundries will acquire and operate manufacturing facilities in East Fishkill, New York, and Essex Junction, Vermont, and also add IBM’s commercial microelectronics business. The company said it plans to provide jobs for all IBM employees (, aside from a group that will remain with IBM. 

The 10-year partnership and exchange of thousand of patents will allow Globalfoundries to access key chipmaking technology and guarantee supply  ;) ;D of chips that IBM needs for its systems, like mainframe computers and its Watson data-analytics technology.

Related: IBM Plunges as CEO Abandons 2015 Earnings Forecast

Read the full bit of innocent sounding predatory Capitalist Puffery at link below.

Another Agelbert NOTE: Tell me chillun', why does a stock PLUNGE when the IBM conscience free (see NAZI partners in business in WWII) predatory capitalist, employee shafting piggery strategy (Vee must make ze profits for ze shareholders!  (  announces that they are offloading LOSING operations? ???  No, it's not because of the lowered earnings per share, NOPE, NOPE, NOPE, don't be a DOPE.  ;D

Here's the way this SICK EMPLOYEE SHAFTING stuff works:

1) Corporation is losing money and wants to shut down a plant.

2) Politicians say corporations can't do dat because there is an employment crisis in the USA and it will look "un-American". ESPECIALLY since they want to sell the plant to rich Ayrab despots who don't give three hoots about human rights or employee  benefits.

3) Corporation makes a "deal" ( politicians (so they won't make a fuss) to keep quiet while they announce the sale of the plant(s) to the "Silicon Valley" (good PR!)  based GlobalFoundries along with lots of crocodile tears about lost earnings in the media. The fact that GlobalFoundries is owned by Abu Dhabi is the fine print not be "overly and irrationally" emphasized in the press releases. LOL!

4) About 6 months to a year from now massive layoffs occur in said plants. IBM don't own em' so, it ain't dere problem. Mens Rea in the STRATEGY to sell, maybe?  YEP! Of course the lawyers will, CORRECTLY, claim it's ALL LEGAL and MENS REA is for the criminal code so, even if it could be proved, it's NO BIG DEAL.  ;D

5) Towns with these plants go into a depression. In Vermont's case, Essex Junction is IT for the whole state as far as the economy. The only thing bigger is health care. Vermont will take a massive hit.   :P

6) THE IRONY IS SO THICK YOU CAN CUT IT WITH A KNIFE! Vermonters are xenophobic right down to their microscopic DNA!. They don't even want New Yorkers livin' heah; never mind having AYRABS OWN the pride and joy of Essex Junction! Can you say schadenfreude?   (

Vermonters claim to support democracy (especially the kind we export to the Ayrabs in explosive packages... ;)) while taking care to keep their town meetings very 'democratic' (as long as you are the right - see very long list starting with COLOR). NOW the plant in Essex Junction belongs to an UNDEMOCRATIC, autocratic, RICH country which is intolerant of human rights and anything else that threatens oligarchic rule.  :o

 Will Vermonters QUIT in protest? I don't think so. All that money made from supporting WAR in the Ayrab world is about to turn into a lesson in what not to do when your country wants to wage wars for profit. What goes around, comes around.  :P

7) The media in places like Vermont will do everything they can to LIE about how "democratric" and "nice" the government of Abu Dhabi is.   (

But I admit, it will be fun to watch Vermonters pretend they aren't fit to be tied by this "betrayal" of BIG BLUE. So how come the stock took a hit today when IBM is going to make big bucks in the long run from this (at the expense of Vermonters and New Yorkers!)? (   BECAUSE one hell of a lot of Vermonters and New Yorkers OWN IBM stock and are NOT happy campers!  (

Believe what you will. The 7 parts of this CRIMINAL (but LEGAL) Corporate two step are now nauseatingly common in the USA.   ( They grow ever more clever (with the aid of the Fascist handmaiden, the COURT SYSTEM and the conscience free LAWYERS that run it) in, with malice and aforethought, finding ways to legally pay slave wages to employees. Have a nice day.
A man is usually more careful of his money than of his principles.

The only prize much cared for by the powerful is power.

Beware how you take away hope from any human being.
Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.

Title: Antares rocket goes boom
Post by: AGelbert on October 31, 2014, 03:01:22 pm
Press react like normal human beings (for a change) when Antares rocket goes boom.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on November 23, 2014, 03:12:29 pm

How Old Is the Oldest Known Tortoise?   ???

Hi! My name is Jonathan.  I was born in 1832 and I'm STILL ALIVE!   ( (

A Seychelles giant tortoise named Jonathan is the oldest known tortoise at 182 years old.   :o ( Residing on the tropical island of Saint Helena in the South Atlantic Ocean, Jonathan was brought to the island in 1882. He was estimated to be about 50 years old at the time of his arrival, and is the only survivor of the four tortoises brought to Saint Helena. Giant tortoises are among the longest living animals on the planet, and though to live over 200 years. Yet it is difficult to confirm this idea as the tortoises usually outlive the people studying them. Besides Jonathan, other giant tortoises have lived well into the history books: Harriet at 176, Esmeralda at 170, and Adwaita whose lifespan was measured to be 255 years.

More about tortoises:

•While the term "turtle" refers to any shelled reptile, tortoises are those that only live on land and cannot swim.

•The shell of a tortoise or turtle is fused bone and contains a rib cage, spinal cords, and nerve endings. The nerve endings allow the creatures to feel movement against them.

•Eleven species of giant tortoises live on the Galápagos islands as of 2014. When Charles Darwin arrived at the islands 1835, there were 15 species. The tortoises are listed as endangered species and protected by the Ecuadorian government.

Respect your elders, you young punks!    ( Stop fouling your nest! (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on November 27, 2014, 06:23:08 pm
Floating ZIP CODE  ;D

A mail boat called the J.W. Westcott II is used by the US Postal Service and has its own zip code: 48222. The boat is used to deliver mail to other ships on the Detroit River, and is the only floating post office in the world that delivers mail to moving ships. In 1895, the floating post office began ferrying mail to passing ships via rowboat, then updated to a 45 foot (14 m) ship in 1949. All mail can be delivered to crews on ships traveling on the Detroit River by being addressed "Vessel Name, Marine Post Office, Detroit, Michigan, 48222."

More about zip codes:

•Zip codes are used by other delivery companies such as FedEx, United Parcel Service (UPS), and DHL.

•Zip codes are used to gather geographical statistics in the US, as well as marketing to provide purchasing-pattern data.  ;)

•The US Postal Service started using two-digit zip codes for large cities in 1943. By 1983, the postal service started to use expanded zip codes called "ZIP + 4" in order to identify certain segments within the general zip code area.

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 02, 2014, 09:51:41 pm
Why Do Americans Refrigerate Eggs?   ???

Americans refrigerate eggs because of US federal food safety regulations that require chicken eggs to be washed prior to sale. The process of washing eggs actually exposes them to bacteria because it destroys the outermost protective coating of the shell that keeps bacteria and other microorganisms from penetrating it.   :o   :P   :( 

Refrigerating the eggs after washing helps prevent microorganisms from reaching within the porous shell. Egg refrigeration is not common in other countries   8), with the exception of Japan and Scandinavia, because of differing food safety standards that do not require washing beforehand. Instead, hens are required to be vaccinated against illnesses prior to laying eggs.

More about eggs:

•The US produces around 75 billion eggs each year, accounting for 10% of the total world egg supply.

•A hen lays an average of 250 eggs annually and most eggs are laid between 7:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. due to computer-controlled lighting in henhouses that stimulates egg production.

•The shell comprises approximately 9 to 12% of the weight of an average egg, and each shell contains up to 17,000 tiny holes.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 03, 2014, 09:54:38 pm
One Hamburger Contains the Meat of How Many Cows?  :o  :P

One hamburger contains the meat of up to approximately 100 cows. This is due to how ground beef is processed: cuts of beef that are not desired to be used in their whole state for steaks or roasts, for example, are gathered and ground up in a tenderizer. This compilation of scraps makes it likely that a package of ground beef may contain meat from many cows. The cheapest varieties of ground beef are often used for low cost hamburgers for fast food restaurants and will generally be the most likely to contain the highest number of less desirable scraps of beef from 100 cows or so.

More about ground beef:

•Americans consume approximately 14 billion hamburgers every year and 80% of households eat beef at least once every two weeks.

•French fries are the most common side dish to accompany hamburgers. An estimated 31% of all burgers are served with a side of fries, followed by chips at 13%.

•Ground beef is the most popular form of beef, comprising over half of all beef sales.
Title: Does the US Post Office Really Use Mules?
Post by: AGelbert on December 07, 2014, 05:11:17 pm
We'll STILL be HERE providing RENEWABLE ENERGY  when those dad blamed poison belchin' cars are GONE!   (

Does the US Post Office Really Use Mules?  (

The US Post Office really uses mules to deliver items to the Havasupai Indians, who live at the bottom of the Grand Canyon in Arizona. A train of mules is used to transport mail, along with food, supplies, and even furniture, down an 8 mile (12.87 km) trail to the base of the Grand Canyon. The daily deliveries to the Havasupai Indians weigh around 4,000 pounds (1814.37 kg), with an individual mule being able to carry 130 pounds (58.97 kg) at a time. The nearest Post Office location to the Havasupai Indians is in Peach Springs, Arizona and contains walk-in freezers to hold the food for delivery.
Grand Canyon Mule Train

More about the US Postal Service:

•There is no way to access the Point Roberts, WA Post Office by land in the US—it requires driving through British Columbia, Canada or else by boat.

•The Post Office Stamp Fulfillment Center in Kansas City, Missouri is actually located 150 feet (45.72 m) underground in order to provide the right moisture levels for preserving the stamps.  :o

•Ships on the Detroit River in Michigan have their own mail boat that delivers to them on the water, and it even has its own zip code.

I'll be back!

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 22, 2015, 12:41:07 am
Does Russia have a greater Surface Area than Pluto?   ???

Is the above bigger than


Russia is the largest country on Earth and actually does have a greater surface area than Pluto, which is a main reason why it was reclassified as a dwarf planet in 2006. The surface area of Russia is approximately 6.6 million square miles (17 million sq km), while Pluto’s surface area is 6.4 million square miles (16.7 million sq km). The country has a population of approximately 142 million people.

Nearly three-quarters of Russians live in cities, leaving the vast amount of the country’s significant surface area hardly populated due to its harsh cold climates and being mostly covered with trees.

More about Russia:

Lake Baikal has a LOT of water!

•Russia contains one-fifth of the world’s total forests. It also is home to the deepest lake in the world, Lake Baikal with a depth of 5,387 feet (1,641.96 m), which contains one-fifth of the world’s supply of fresh water.  :o

•All of Russia’s combined pipelines, such as for gas and oil water, would theoretically be able to circle the Earth six times.  :P

•There are nine different time zones that stretch across two continents in Russia, the most of any country in the world.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on February 21, 2015, 08:31:04 pm
Some good and some rather not so good Japanese customs.     (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on March 03, 2015, 07:44:25 pm
Is It True That Atoms Are Mostly Empty Space?

It is true that atoms are mostly empty space. In fact, if all of the space from the body’s atoms were eliminated, the leftover result would be so tiny, the body could fit into an opening that is less than 1/500th of a centimeter -- or the point of a pin.  ;D Although atoms are small and comprised of empty space, they are numerous; the average adult human body is estimated to contain 7 octillion (or 7 followed by 27 zeros) individual atoms. Each atom is believed to contain material that was created billions of years ago. For instance, hydrogen is thought to be nearly 14 billion years old, and oxygen was thought to be created about 12 billion years ago.

More about the structure of the human body:

•The human body is thought to contain 10 times more bacterial cells than actual cells that form the body.
We-the-happy-bacteria are the REAL boss inside you Homo SAP mobile bacterial shelter and food obtaining bio-machines.    ( More food NOW or you get a tummy ache! (

•60% of the human body is comprised of water, which contains hydrogen and oxygen molecules.

•Although the brain makes up just 2% of the total human body, it requires at least 20% of the body’s entire oxygen supply.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on April 28, 2015, 12:44:51 am
Sunday, April 26, 2015

Collective Sorrow

by  Alfred Lehmberg

I write to make a music of the sort that won't pretend what the errors of our past produce... today. All the terror raining bombs, insulted Arabs—wounded Jews... all the hate that's running rampant while faux *Christians* hold their sway.

Still, the saucers slither in the blackness if in sight, and we cower in indifference to pretend that wrong is right. To wit? The least of us are sacrificed to pad rich feathered halls with pumped up teats of trophy wives oblivious to all...

e tear our eyes from lights that fly. We laugh and smirk and don't ask why. We're mired in mistakes so plain, mistakes so senseless, cruel—insane.

Make some man a public figure, think him... somehow... better, bigger! Place him on your pedestal—too soon held up for ridicule. Listen to his radio. Hit his site. He's getting bold (?)—then cast him out you fickle ****! You whining... puling... fawning snitch!

It all comes down to us at last. It's what we catch in nets we cast. But them! So safe (and in position), spewing Right-Wing impositions. Wrapped in their convenience—proud! ...And at the suffering? Laugh out loud!

The truth is ravaged—used, abused! Tormented! Savaged! Depressed! Confused!

From where would come your laughter, then? You're not a clueless JERK, my friend... Truth comes clean if it's but faced, though most will not to earn disgrace.

onspiracy's alive and stark! Insidious and plainly dark, it thrives too well in quick denial—is nurtured in conniving guile. It preens itself in our distraction and grows too bold in our inaction!

AGREE the water's filthy, but save the baby—could we? Will we?

We're mushrooms to the non-elected. We're in the dark, fed crap—detective! We don't have a wit or clue... clear evidence of said abuse. Faith and trust is just pretended, crass betrayal, instead, extended!

Nothing's as it must appear if first drawn through ones lens of fear...

You say that's false, but then stop looking... blinded to their looting—rooking! It's like we *know* and just don't care, contributing to angst still there! ...And in your bubble thought secure... you rationalize these lies—absurd!

Hidden in this churning madness, caught up in elitist gladness are the truths that we would have if we would cop to what we've said. Hallowed *treaties* now deplored, around five hundred, *slightly* more—ripped apart by "Uncle Sam" to fill the vaults of shadow men? Fixing prices, built-in failure, planning for a short-term's nadir, building walls to hide behind for "insulation's" sake, one finds!

Knowledge IS the power, friend, explaining schools that just *pretend*. Autonomy is what we're missing, then *teams* have power beyond dismissing, but THAT is what "the man" must fear (above all else) it so appears.

Flying in the skies like crickets, *somewhere*, it has been admitted, are reflections of ourselves who look and wonder for themselves! But they're not here 'cause we're not there (?), our science says... but oh—contraire!

uch better that we treat them like... ...they're watching us, just out of sight. The evidence: historical, photos, papers, anecdotal—these just tips of massive 'bergs which float serenely I have heard...

We're not LOOKING! We don't admit it. We're lost to our indifference with it! Our focus is on learned sneering, proudly bloated profiteering. We've no thought beyond tomorrow, and THAT is our collective sorrow. (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 16, 2015, 06:02:17 pm
How Quickly Do Giant Bamboo Plants Grow in the Rainforest?  ???


Bamboo is a type of grass with hollow, woody stems that grows in warm temperatures. There are many different types of bamboo -- more than 1000 different species around the world. How quickly bamboo grow depend on the species and environmental factors. Tropical species tend to grow the fastest.


Giant bamboo plants in the rainforest can grow as much as 9 inches (23 cm) in a single day, although some can grow even faster  :o  ;D . As of 2015, the Guinness world record for the fastest growing plant belongs to a bamboo. The tallest recorded tropical bamboo is 40 meters (130 ft) long.

More about bamboo:

•Bamboo likes slightly acidic (5.5 to 7 pH), well draining soil and tropical species love sun; USDA zone 8 is ideal for them.

•Bamboo is used as construction material in many parts of Asia, in making things like flooring and fences.

•According to a Philippine legend, the first man and woman emerged from a giant bamboo.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 16, 2015, 09:32:48 pm
The way of all physical life. The fellow that made this video sees beauty in decay. I see grace, as well as sadness in decay. 

( ( (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 17, 2015, 12:43:25 am
Watch a sunflower grow and flower.   (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 22, 2015, 08:29:09 pm
New seafloor map reveals thousands of seamounts

Vast unexplored areas of the ocean have now been mapped with new satellite data and scientists have discovered thousands of previously uncharted seamounts in addition to an extinct spreading ridge in the Gulf of Mexico. The study was published in the journal Science on October 3, 2014.


Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 30, 2015, 01:19:57 am
Vermonters need $21 per hour to afford rent, study says   :(


The National Low-Income Housing Coalition, which released the report, ranks the state as the 13th-most expensive in the country for renters — the same as last year. A Vermonter working at the $9.15 minimum wage would need to put in 70 hours per week to live in a one-bedroom home, according to the report, titled “Out of Reach.”
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 31, 2015, 12:27:00 am
Invisible Impact: The Risk of Ionizing Radiation on Cath Lab Staff
Surgeons that routinely use fluoroscopy in vascular procedures and cardiac device implantation are suffering the effects of too much exposure to ionizing radiation.  :(

Europace. 2014 Jul;16(7):946-64. doi: 10.1093/europace/eut409. Epub 2014 May 2.

Practical ways to reduce radiation dose for patients and staff during device implantations and electrophysiological procedures.

Heidbuchel H1, Wittkampf FH2, Vano E3, Ernst S4, Schilling R5, Picano E6, Mont L7; Reviewers:, Jais P8, de Bono J9, Piorkowski C10, Saad E11, Femenia F5; European Heart Rhythm Association.

Author information


Despite the advent of non-fluoroscopic technology, fluoroscopy remains the cornerstone of imaging in most interventional electrophysiological procedures, from diagnostic studies over ablation interventions to device implantation. Moreover, many patients receive additional X-ray imaging, such as cardiac computed tomography and others.

More and more complex procedures have the risk to increase the radiation exposure, both for the patients and the operators. The professional lifetime attributable excess cancer risk may be around 1 in 100 for the operators, the same as for a patient undergoing repetitive complex procedures. Moreover, recent reports have also hinted at an excess risk of brain tumours among interventional cardiologists.

Apart from evaluating the need for and justifying the use of radiation to assist their procedures, physicians have to continuously explore ways to reduce the radiation exposure. After an introduction on how to quantify the radiation exposure and defining its current magnitude in electrophysiology compared with the other sources of radiation, this position paper wants to offer some very practical advice on how to reduce exposure to patients and staff. The text describes how customization of the X-ray system, workflow adaptations, and shielding measures can be implemented in the cath lab. The potential and the pitfalls of different non-fluoroscopic guiding technologies are discussed.

Finally, we suggest further improvements that can be implemented by both the physicians and the industry in the future. We are confident that these suggestions are able to reduce patient and operator exposure by more than an order of magnitude, and therefore think that these recommendations are worth reading and implementing by any electrophysiological operator in the field.   (

Published on behalf of the European Society of Cardiology. All rights reserved. © The Author 2014. For permissions please email:


Exposure; Interventional electrophysiology; Radiation; Radioprotection; Risk
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 31, 2015, 03:30:41 pm
World's BIGGEST pets  :o
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on June 04, 2015, 10:24:01 pm

News 6/2/15: Pope to Disclose Existence of ETs?  :o  ???
Published on Jun 2, 2015

Pope Francis is reportedly about to disclose the existence of extraterrestrial life. Whether or not this claim is true, two things are sure: We're supposed to believe that ETs exist, and this pope is committed to transforming the way all of us live.

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on June 25, 2015, 10:24:26 pm
Big Ben used to be the largest clock tower in the world. As of 2012, the largest clock tower in the world is  "Abraj Al-Bait," Mecca Royal Hotel Clock Tower.

Does Big Ben Keep Perfect Time?

Big Ben is the clock tower of the Palace of Westminster in London which houses the United Kingdom's parliament. The tower was built between 1843 and 1858. Since then it has become an iconic landmark of London, and one of the most popular destinations for tourists.

"Big Ben" actually refers to the largest bell inside the clock tower. Although various different names have been given to the structure over the years, Big Ben remains the most popular and recognized. Big Ben is known for being a very accurate and reliable clock.

In fact, the clock even survived World War II and did not pause when the nearby Commons chamber was bombed.
This doesn't mean that Big Ben has never had mishaps however. In 1949, so many starlings roosted on the minute hand of the clock that it stopped. Starlings are short-tailed, dark-colored European birds that flock and fly together in sometimes huge numbers.

Starlings on the move!  :o

Weather also proved to be a culprit on two accounts, once in 1962 when snow caused Big Ben to delay, and again in 2005 when temperatures hit 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius).

Aside from these incidents and rare repairs or refurbishments, Big Ben has been chiming continuously since it first rang in 1859. If the clock happens to be too slow or too fast, it is adjusted with old British pennies in the pendulum. Pennies are added if it is too fast, and pennies removed if too slow.[/size][/quote]

More about Big Ben:

•“O Lord, keep safe our Queen Victoria the First” in Latin is inscribed at the base of each clock dial of Big Ben.

•Big Ben's tower is 315.9 feet (96.3 meters) high. Its bell weighs 13.8 tons and the minute hands weigh close to 220 pounds (100 kilograms).

•Big Ben used to be the largest clock tower in the world. As of 2012, the largest clock tower in the world is "Abraj Al-Bait," Mecca Royal Hotel Clock Tower.

Title: Re: Non-routine News - Denver’s Energy Use Is Surging, and It’s Because of WEED
Post by: AGelbert on July 08, 2015, 06:56:30 pm

Denver’s Energy Use Is Surging, and It’s Because of Weed

Kate Knibbs

7/07/15 3:20pm

The bud may be green, but growing it really isn’t: Weed growers in Denver are straining the city’s electrical grid.

Denver is experiencing spiking electricity consumption, with nearly half of that growth coming from its burgeoning pot industry, as the Denver Post reports:

Citywide electricity use has been rising at the rate of 1.2 percent a year, and 45 percent of that increase comes from marijuana-growing facilities, Denver officials said Wednesday.

Now, even though the increase in electricity use is related to the increase is dank bud cultivation, the weed growing industry still uses less than two percent of Denver’s electricity altogether. But it’s increasing at such a high rate that the number will swell unless the city’s weed purveyors figure out more eco-friendly growing methods.

The reason why weed is such an energy-suck? Lighting. For indoor grow ops, plants need lots of artificial light. That on its own sucks up energy, but then those lights also heat up the growing facilities, which means they need more air conditioning. They also need ventilation fans and humidity regulators.

Boulder Weekly has more depressing stats on the problem with indoor weed growth:

According to data from Xcel Energy and estimates from those familiar with indoor growing, a single light used to grow 16 square feet of pot consumes about half as much energy as the average Colorado house in a one-month time frame.

This isn’t just a Denver problem. Growing weed requires a lot of energy all over. As City Lab pointed out, a Columbia Environmental Law Journal report recently highlighted how draining the pot industry is on energy all over the US:

It consumes six-times as much energy as the pharmaceuticals industry and requires eight-times as much energy per square foot as the average U.S. commercial building. It is estimated that marijuana currently consumes at least one percent of all of the nation’s electricity. And in California, which reportedly has the largest marijuana growing industry in the United States, consumption totals three percent of California’s total electricity consumption.

So, what to do about weed’s energy suck? Lighting companies are working with pot companies on more energy-efficient LED lighting options. Tesla has a powerful new battery that could come in handy for keeping energy costs down for weed growers in emergency power outages, or help store home-generated solar energy, but there’s clearly a need for more comprehensive solutions.

In addition to finding better lighting options, there’s a simpler solution for minimizing the energy impact of the weed industry: Growing outdoors is more energy-efficient, but it’s not legal in Colorado. When other states legalize marijuana cultivation, allowing for outdoor growth could help lower the drain, though growers often prefer indoors for higher-volume crop yields and year-round growth. While deregulating where you can grow weed could encourage some growers to take crops outside and save energy, regulating licensing to incentivize growers to use renewable energy sources will also help offset some of the drain.  (
Now THAT's a nice replacement for FIAT dollars! (
Title: Re: Non-routine News - Ladies and Gentlemen, It's Time to Panic
Post by: AGelbert on July 08, 2015, 07:44:53 pm
Ladies and Gentlemen, It's Time to Panic  (

Hamilton Nolan    7/08/15 12:23pm

Have you noticed anything odd going on this morning? Oh yes. Let us be the first to tell you that the time to panic is upon us.

ITEM: The New York City subway system suffered an atrocious commute today, with some trains being inexplicably stranded in stations for long periods of time.

ITEM: The website “The Dissolve” folded today.

ITEM: United Airlines was forced to ground all of its flights after its computer system mysteriously stopped working.

ITEM: The New York Stock Exchange suspended trading today after its computerized trading system mysteriously stopped working.

ITEM: Immediately after, the Wall Street Journal’s website mysteriously stopped working.

ITEM: More than 2,500 people in Washington, DC mysteriously lost power.

It seems our nation’s centers of powers are facing a mysterious and spreading collapse.

I choose to panic. If you choose to remain calm, good—I’ll get away ahead of you.  ;D (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on August 20, 2015, 03:40:24 pm
When Was Ketchup First Made Available?   ???

America's most favorite condiment, ketchup, was first made available as pill medication and was said to cure all kinds of diseases.(  ( 

Named, "Dr. Miles' Compound Extract of Tomato,"  ;D Archibald Miles marketed what he claimed to be a tomato extract with medicinal properties in the United States. The extract was sold in the 1830s in the form of pills with recommended dosages for a variety of illnesses and ailments. Many Americans purchased the pills in the hopes the medication would rid them of their ailments by "purifying their blood."   (

Although no one is certain of what exactly they were made of, the tomato extract pills probably contained vitamin C and laxatives. Regardless of whether they were actually beneficial or not, they made a lot of money for Miles and other sellers who followed in his footsteps in the lucrative tomato medicine business. (

More about ketchup:

•Ketchup is originally Asian, but the original condiment had nothing to do with tomatoes. The Chinese condiment "ke-tchup" was a fish condiment eaten by Asians as far back as 544 A.D.

•As of 2014, Americans on average consume three bottles of ketchup per year.  :o  :P

Ketchup exits a Heinz bottle at the speed of 1.3 centimeters (0.5 inches) per second.  ::)

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on September 07, 2015, 07:33:54 pm
How Often Do Planes Disappear?     (

Do planes disappear suddenly without a trace?  :P

For many of us, missing planes bring to mind the myth of the Bermuda Triangle, the 500,000 square mile area in the Atlantic Ocean where planes and ships are believed to just disappear. However, missing planes are not as rare as we think and they are definitely not exclusive to the area of ocean called the Bermuda Triangle. According to Aviation Safety Network Records, at least 85 passenger, cargo and military transport planes have vanished without a trace since 1948. These incidents have taken place all over the world and no aircraft debris or passenger bodies have been discovered for them as of 2014.

The record of missing planes includes the Malaysian Airlines flight MH370. The commercial flight which had 239 people on board went missing on 8 March 2014 in the Southern Indian Ocean. As of 2015, no debris belonging to the plane has been discovered.

Sometimes it can take a very long time for debris from missing aircraft to show up. For example, the debris from the Indian Air Force An-12 transport aircraft that went missing in 1968 was found only in 2013.

More about plane accidents and missing planes:

•Air France 447 crashed while flying over the Atlantic in 2009. It took two years to find all of the bodies of the 288 passengers on board.

•In 1945, a rescue plane looking for the five lost US Navy bombers disappeared in the Bermuda Triangle.

•Amelia Earhart's Lockheed Electra disappeared in the mid-Pacific in 1937 while attempting to fly around the world.

Lead image is from the article at link below:
Title: The Poodwaddle clocks: The big picture on what is going on out there
Post by: AGelbert on September 18, 2015, 03:53:05 pm
The Poodwaddle clocks: The big picture on what is going on out there

Readers might have a little fun at Poodwaddle. They have all the serious stuff.  (  (  The clock on population growth must certainly give overpopulation fearing weenies heartburn.  ;D

The one on religions drives the nominally "Christian" Republicans to distraction!   (

Are there really that many atheists out there?  :icon_scratch: If so, that just might explain the egocentric attitude the world is gripped in. After all, if this is IT, then you have to "go for it now", so to speak.  :evil4: Don't expect anyone here to believe that stat is evidence of a FUBAR society. I'm certain a breakdown of where EXACTLY, all those atheists are will show a massive correlation with the 20% of the planet's population doing 80% of the damage. But we all know that correlation ain't causation, don't we?  (  (

But there is a fun stats section you will find interesting, as well.   ( (
FUN STATS: (I have the clock set to events year to date. If you set the clock to "NOW", you get a quick idea of what is happening more often. :o  ;D). Look at all those First Kisses! The incrementing count of US Divorces. Marriages, US Cheaters, Wine and more for all eyes to feast on!

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on September 27, 2015, 09:35:37 pm
Are Vegetables Dead When You Buy Them at a Grocery Store?   ???

Some of us have been told in the past that fruits and vegetables are actually dead when you buy them at a grocery store. It turns out, however, this is not true. Research shows that some picked vegetables, such as carrots and broccoli, die only when they are eaten.

This research was carried out by Rice University and published in Current Biology in 2013. The study discovered that about a week after some fruit and vegetables were picked, they continued to respond to light. This means that fruits and vegetables in the produce aisle of grocery stores are still very much alive. In fact, they even continue to produce compounds that protect them from pests thanks to their circadian clock.

Experts believe that this knowledge can be used for benefit, such as to maximize the natural pest defense qualities of plants and reduce the use of chemical pesticides. The knowledge of circadian rhythms may also be utilized to maximize the nutrients of plants for consumption.

More about food:

•Up to 33% of all food for human consumption is wasted. Food is wasted more in developed countries than in developing countries.

•As of 2013, 65% of those who eat gluten-free foods do so because they believe it is healthier, rather than due to gluten intolerance or sensitivity.

•The typical lunch at American schools has 1,400 calories and includes one bread item, about 1.5 ounces of meat, one starch, a half cup of vegetables or fruit and 8 ounces of milk.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 12, 2015, 03:29:39 pm
5 of the Biggest Myths About Creative People
Elise Moreau
October 11, 2015

Creativity is generally defined as the ability to come up with imaginative or unique ideas that haven’t been thought up by anyone else before. But because the word tends to be overused in describing everything from team effort in a workplace setting to throwing a themed dinner party at home, its true meaning can often seem vague and unclear even when used in certain contexts.

People who are labeled as “creatives” even sometimes get a bad rap for all the misconceptions about what they do and how they work. If that’s you, or even someone you know, it may be worth reviewing some of the following points that totally debunk some of the most common stereotypical assumptions about creative people. (

Myth #1: Creative people are right-brained.

You’ve probably heard it before: The right side of the brain is responsible for creativity, while the left side is all about analytical thinking. You can stop believing this is true, because modern science has determined that the creative process involves many regions across the brain that isn’t limited to just one side. Many regions even interact and work together, depending on the stage in the creative process and what the task may be.

Myth #2: Creative people pull their inspiration out of thin air.

Otherwise known as the “eureka!” myth, it’s popular to assume that creatives spend hours and hours of their time thinking until suddenly the big idea they’ve been waiting for just arises out of nowhere when they least expect it. It may seem like that’s what’s happening, but you can chalk it all up to something we all do, called divergent thinking—the type of relaxed and aimless thinking that happens when you take a break from focusing on the problem at hand and allow your mind to wander.

Myth #3: Creative people specialize in the arts.

Musicians, writers, painters, sculptors, dancers and actors—they’re the real creatives, aren’t they? We all have to be careful with thinking that creativity applies mostly or only to some of these very specific forms of art. A scientist may need to look for new clues in his research, a team of engineers may need to come up with an innovative product to stand out from the competition or an accountant may need to figure out a different approach to audit financial statements. All these seemingly unimaginative jobs involve much more creativity than you might assume.

Myth #4: Creative people are simply born with it.

Many people look at very successful creative individuals and assume that their talent simply comes naturally to them. What they don’t see are the days, weeks, months and years these people have put into their work, the knowledge and experience they acquired and the many failures they endured before finding success. Creativity can be a learned skill, as long as you’re willing to work for it.

Myth #5: Creative people are loners.

It’s obvious that some of the most famous artists, scientists and inventors that have made their mark on the world are known to have been lone geniuses who thrived on carrying out their artwork and experiments for hours in seclusion. That may be the case for some, but in other cases, sometimes one person ends up receiving all the credit when in fact the creative process depended on the collaborative efforts of an entire team. After all, when you think about it, it would seem pretty impossible for one person to be solely responsible for all the creativity behind an Oscar-worthy Hollywood movie, a band’s chart-topping album or even a massive breakthrough in scientific research.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 15, 2015, 12:44:55 am
Do All People Have Bacteria in Their Stomachs?  ???

It was a dirty job:  ;D A study done by Stanford scientists, Dr. Patrick Brown and Dr. David Relman, sampled a year's worth of diapers in 14 different babies to confirm that babies are born with no bacteria in their digestive systems. Adults, however, have about 100 trillion bacteria in their digestive systems. While babies are born with no bacteria in their digestive system at the time of birth, it only takes a few days post-birth for bacteria to begin to grow.

The study also found that even over the first year the bacteria found in the stool samples varied widely from baby to baby. Scientists were intrigued by this finding since adults typically have the same bacterial families colonizing in their digestive system with little variance over time. However, at the end of the first year, the scientists found the bacteria in a baby's digestive system does begin to resemble that of an adult.

More interesting facts about babies:

•Babies are not born with kneecaps. 

•Babies born in May are usually the heaviest; weighing on average about 200 grams more than babies born in any other month.

•A baby recognizes the smell and voice of their mother from birth, and can visually distinguish their mother from other adults in just a few weeks.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 17, 2015, 03:58:50 pm
These observed phenomena are all REAL.
But Science CANNOT explain them. Particularly unsettling to those who worship science and it's view that the physical universe is the limit of reality, is the placebo effect. It even works better than nothing when you KNOW it is a placebo!

Learn about a careful, meticulous science experiment done involving patients that required knee surgery divided into three groups.

Only ONE group of the three was actually given knee surgery. The other two groups given two variations of placebo surgery (incision with saline solution or just an incision) had equal or better rates of healing.  ;D

But there is a terrible downside to the placebo effect. Propagandists and Con artists everywhere have noticed how effective it is at fooling people. The Fossil Fuel Industry  ( learned it from the Tobacco Industry (see: Birds of a feather).  (

If a polluting industry that is trashing the planet for short term gain can convince enough people that their pollution is "beneficial" to the biosphere, the minds of those propagandized would work to prevent that pollution from being accepted as real.

Perhaps the greatest hidden tool of the fossil fuel industry to fight global warming (in order to preserve their profits, not to stop the pollution) is the propaganda effort to convince people we are entering an ice age! If enough people believe that, reason the Empathy Deficit Disordered ASS HOLES that cheerlead fossil fuels, the placebo effect might even slow global warming down!

But there is a GIANT problem with that logic. And it is not about whether the placebo effect is real or not. That much has been proven. It's the DENIAL of the FACT that something is INJURING the biosphere that undermines any hope of using a mass placebo effect to reduce or prevent global warming.
Whether that would work to prevent the biosphere from being polluted is not the question. WHY? Because the placebo effect ONLY works when you think you need to be HEALED of a disease or injury. The Fossil Fuel Industry has PREVENTED public awareness of the problem (i.e. injury/disease to the biosphere).


The placebo effect may work quite well inside our bodies but I suspect the faith to move mountains is at odds with fooling  people in using faith to prevent global warming. The predators 'R' US crowd running the polluting industries are not known for their faith or good works. They are known for there 24/7 lie that they are our "loyal servants concerned only with our welfare".

They claim they are merely "supplying our demand" when, in actuality, they are gaming us to supply THEIR demand. Clever, aren't they?

Now you know why the propagandists for the fossil fuel industry lie, distort and double talk about "no warming for a decade, "warming has ceased", "we are entering an ice age" and, last but not least in the hit parade of Push the Placebo to Preserve Profits efforts, "it's the sunspots, not Carbon Dioxide", that control Earth's temperature" baloney.  (

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 23, 2015, 07:11:37 pm
Who is the oldest known person in the history of mankind with a valid proof of their age?  (

Carlos Matias La Borde, Bachelor's Degree in Computer & Information Science

15.7k Views • Upvoted by

Charles Faraone, History is written by the victors

Jeanne Calment. She lived to 122, from 1875 to 1997.

She said that she met Vincent Van Gogh as a child, and that he was dirty, poorly dressed, and disagreeable.

She smoked until she was 117.

One of the funnier things about her life is that when she was 90, a 47 year old lawyer got her to sign a contract so that if she died, he'd get her apartment. In return, he'd give her a monthly stipend.

He assumed she'd be dead within a couple years at most, so he was hoping to get her apartment on the cheap.

But she just kept living. Eventually he died at 77, never having received the apartment. His widow kept paying Calment after his death per the contract.

By the time she died, she'd been paid $180,000... over twice the apartment's worth.

Jeanne Calment. She lived to 122, from 1875 to 1997. (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 27, 2015, 02:29:45 pm
The Chemistry of Snowflakes
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 03, 2016, 10:25:58 pm

The Apophis Asteriod: What you Need to Know  :o
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 04, 2016, 02:53:57 pm
Since you are open minded, unlike many out there who prefer to bask in unimaginative denial of anything they cannot instantly prove, I want to run this by you.

Have you ever considered how ROUND the Gulf of Mexico is? Isn't it possible that one BIG ASSED ROCK hit there and wiped EVERYTHING out within 10,000 miles (or more) in the past? Big bullets make round holes!  ;D

Human existence is incredibly fragile. I can picture a scenario where a rock that is NOT supposed to hit our planet from past NASA tracking (Near Earth Orbit - NEO rocks) DOES hit. All that has to occur is for the rock to get too close to the moon and get a gravitational slingshot at us. If it's big enough, we get ANOTHER GULF OF MEXICO!

Here's the result of a (somewhat smaller) hypothetical hit of an asteroid in the present Gulf of Mexico.

My friend you are spot on ! {pun intended}

According to the data/intel on said crater the object in question was 110 miles in diameter. It had to have entered the planet during Noah's flood event or the impact on dry land would have vaporized every living thing topside. Noah mentions a great wind across the land & I'll bet it's from this impact. Look at the devastation from Tunguska in Mother Russia. That event may not of even had an object hit but vaporize prior to impact.

Here's the corker. Most of the big shi tty's along the gulf are prone to slide into the gulf as their all built on the shift prone edge. Gil Broussard has graphics of the gulf event over at his you tube page (Planet7X) There's a drop box link to his stuff. It's well researched. Very interesting.

Thanks for following along on this thread. I know the threads getting looked at but folks must be just dumb founded about it all.

I forgot to mention also that " A L L " of our tectonic plates are a direct result of the gulf event. When that 110 mile across space rock came whistlin' in at  over 188,000 mph flamin' hot & punched its way to the center of the planet
through a flooded earth it not only **** earth mommy like an egg but created the Himalaya's instantaneously  :o ...... Notice that those mtns have a circular pattern Gil Broussard has graphics on this as well. 

Gill Broussard also hypothesized that our moon was created from this flood/impact event. If you'll notice the land mass missing from the crust that is now ocean on this planet is closely equal to the mass of material used to create the moon.

(   (   (

 ( for that information.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 04, 2016, 03:18:43 pm
I just want to add that several years ago, when I learned of the hypothesis that our moon was the result of a blow from an asteroid that ejected it into orbit around the earth, I realized that it explained a LOT about the large size of the dinosaurs. Unlike sea creatures, which can get quite large despite the present gravity, land creatures are limited by physiology and bones density and leverage limitations.

Although the idiots out there will scoff, the math HAS been done and the only way dinosaurs could have gotten that big (modern elephant anatomy and physiology has have been compared as proof) was if the gravity was lower. A large asteroid striking the earth would explain the radical slowing of rotation (more perceived gravity through less centrifugal force) and the increase in gravity due to increased mass.

At any rate, I am convinced that earth, for whatever reason, had a more rapid rotation and less gravity due to less mass in the past. The Earth expanded. The relatively YOUNG age of the ocean beds is geologic evidence of that.

The expanding earth hypothesis does not mention the Gulf of Mexico strike. It should. I think that is the missing piece in the explanation of our moon and the large increase in Earth's mass.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 04, 2016, 03:31:24 pm
Ancient Life's Gravity
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 09, 2016, 09:21:35 pm
187,000 Free Hi-Res Images To Use As You Wish  :o  ;D

Submitted by rob.schifreen | Last update on 8th January, 2016 - 3:39am

The New York Public Library is currently working on a project to digitize its collection, and has amassed some 187,000 high-resolution images so far.  And in a welcome altruistic gesture, it's made the entire collection available online.   

It's royalty-free, copyright-free, and you can browse and download the images as you wish.  So whether you want an illustration for a project, or you just want to peruse some stunning artworks without having to leave your web browser, it's now possible and won't cost you a cent.

Just head to to get started.
Title: Important Notice to Forum Readers
Post by: AGelbert on January 23, 2016, 06:13:54 pm
Important Notice to Forum Readers

The Createaforum site that hosts this forum has been down for a couple of days. It is now up but, as you can see, the graphics are still belly up. Here's hoping things will improve soon.

Thank you for your patience.

Administrator Agelbert
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 24, 2016, 02:45:04 pm
Important Notice to Forum Readers

The Createaforum site that hosts this forum has been down for a couple of days. It is now up but, as you can see, the graphics are still belly up. Here's hoping things will improve soon.

Thank you for your patience.

Administrator Agelbert

Everything is working right now.  ;D Thanks again for your patience. 8)
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on February 07, 2016, 02:31:25 pm
How do finger lengths correlate with personality?  ( (

Will Wister, 1000s of hours studying psychology. 

The longer your ring finger relative to your index finger, the more masculine qualities you are likely to possess.

if you have a longer ring finger, it means you got more testosterone as a fetus and are more likely to be hyperactive, aggressive and disgusted by anything featuring Hugh Grant. A longer index finger, on the other hand, means more estrogen, making you more neurotic and sensitive. … Studies found that it was when the two fingers were nearly the same length that the subjects were more likely to be gay (men and women both).[1]

Scientists … have since found links, for example, between long index fingers in women and a likelihood of being highly fertile, unassertive, neurotic and unlikely to take risks. [2]

Men with particularly long ring fingers are more likely than average to be fertile, athletic and aggressive and to have poor verbal skills.[2]

“The other very strong relationship to digit ratio is found in running speeds — there is a pretty good chance of predicting who is going to win a race.”[2]

There are gender differences with respect to finger lengths in males, the second digit(index finger) tends to be shorter than the fourth (ring finger), and in females the second tends to be the same size or slightly longer than the fourth.[3]

This can be referred to as the 2D:4D ratio:

Femme lesbians are exposed to less androgens than butch lesbians – or rather it’s logical to infer that because of differences in the ratio of their finger lengths.[4]

[1] http://www.****.com/article_1...
[3] Ecker A (1875). "Einige Bemerkungen über einen Schwankenden Charakter in den Hand des Menschen[Some remarks about a varying character in the hand of humans]". Archiv fur Anthropologie 8: 68–74. and and via

Written Oct 31, 2012

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on February 14, 2016, 10:40:58 pm
Nature-Inspired Rugs Transform Your Home Into a Natural Landscape

Cole Mellino | February 14, 2016 11:37 am

Argentinian artist Alexandra Kehayoglou turns carpeting scraps that would have otherwise been thrown out into beautiful works of art. Using recycled scraps from her family’s carpet factory in Buenos Aires, Kehayoglou creates stunning patchworks that resemble natural landscapes, including moss, grass, sand, pastures, lakes and snow. (

Kehayoglou uses scraps from her family’s carpet factory in Buenos Aires, Argentina to create these beautiful area rugs. Photo credit: Alexandra Kehayoglou

Kehayoglou has been creating the rugs since 2008. It takes about two months to make each rug, which she crafts using “a laborious hand-tufting process,” according to Colossal. “The carpets balance form and function and can powerfully transform an entire room into a lush meadow dotted with pools of water and tufts of grass. Many of her works even function as part tapestry and flow from walls to floor, or work as covers for chairs or stools.”

Kehayoglou told Country Living that each rug has personal meaning to her. Every piece is based on a specific memory and is tied to the landscapes of her home country. “The pieces are big and feel infinite,” she said. “They are meant to be portals that have the power of taking you where your memories are.”

Check out these photos of her beautiful rugs:   (

Photo credit: Alexandra Kehayoglou

Photo credit: Alexandra Kehayoglou

Photo credit: Alexandra Kehayoglou

Photo credit: Alexandra Kehayoglou

Photo credit: Alexandra Kehayoglou

Photo credit: Alexandra Kehayoglou

Photo credit: Alexandra Kehayoglou

Photo credit: Alexandra Kehayoglou

Photo credit: Alexandra Kehayoglou

You can find more of Kehayoglou’s carpet creations on Instagram, Artsy and her website. (  (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on March 07, 2016, 09:34:01 pm
Incat To Design Ferry For Loch Ness Monster Hunt  (

March 4, 2016 by gCaptain
20m Catamaran Tour Vessel / Photo Credit: Incat Crowther

Incat Crowther said it received a contract to design a 20m catamaran passenger ferry, taking tourists in search of monster Nessie in the waters of Loch Ness in Scotland.

The vessel, being built by Cruise Loch Ness, will be powered by a pair of Volvo D9 MH main engines, producing 313 kilowatt (kW) per side. These engines are capable of propelling the vessel to speeds over 20 knots.

Incat Crowther’s Europe office is working on the preliminary design phase, including an analysis of the vessel’s platform and a narrow-beam catamaran.

The main deck is spacious with large windows for monster-spotting opportunities. Toilets and a bar are located aft. The upper deck is effectively an interior space, being open at the side whilst being covered above. This will allow the cruise to operate in various weather conditions, without forcing passengers inside, according to Incat Crowther.

The vessel’s design features an asymmetric wheelhouse, incorporating an enclosed wing control station on the port side, and an open access passage to starboard. The open starboard side passage allows direct access for crew between the wheelhouse and foredeck, whilst also giving the flexibility of passenger flow between foredeck and upper deck.

Construction of the vessel is underway at Exeter Fabrication Ltd in England.

Are you looking for something? (

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on March 13, 2016, 06:51:21 pm

Watch: Scary Video Shows SAR Helicopter Crashing Near Grounded Cargo Ship  :o

March 11, 2016 by Mike Schuler

Some scary video shows the moment a search and rescue helicopter crashed into the sea while responding to a grounded containership in Taiwan.

The accident occurred while responding to the grounding of the cargo ship TS Taipei near New Taipei City, Taiwan. One person was killed and the pilot was seriously injured in the accident, reports say. Three others aboard the helicopter escaped unharmed.

All 21 crew members were airlifted from TS Taipei on Thursday after the ship ran aground in rough weather.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on March 18, 2016, 10:59:02 pm
The most amazing piece of transformer furniture ever was built in 1810  (  :o (


Go to the link to watch the gif of the desk transforming! It's AMAZING!  (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on March 27, 2016, 06:06:06 pm

Google makes its $149 Nik Collection photo editing software free to download   (

By Rob Thubron on March 25, 2016, 12:00 PM


Back in 2012, Google purchased German company Nik Software, the firm behind a series of photo editing plug-ins designed for amateur and professional photographers. The acquisition was primarily so Google could get its hands on popular photo app Snapseed, but the company also reduced the cost of Nik's collection of seven plug-ins from $499 to $149. Now, the price has dropped even more, right down to zero.

The collection includes Analog Efex Pro, Color Efex Pro, Silver Efex Pro, Viveza, HDR Efex Pro, Sharpener Pro and Dfine. It's free to download for Windows and Mac, and provides “a powerful range of photo editing capabilities — from filter applications that improve color correction, to retouching and creative effects, to image sharpening that brings out all the hidden details, to the ability to make adjustments to the color and tonality of images,” according to a statement from Google.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on April 11, 2016, 10:16:03 pm
Three Castaways Rescued from Deserted Island After Writing “HELP” on Sand

April 9, 2016 by Mike Schuler

Three men were rescued from a deserted island in the western Pacific after a U.S. Navy patrol plane spotted the word H-E-L-P spelled out on the sand in a real life castaway drama.

The drama began Monday when the three men set out on their 19-foot skiff from Pulap in the state of Chuuk, Federated States of Micronesia. The men reported that a few hours after their departure their vessel was capsized by a large wave, ( ( and they spent the night swimming   ( until they reached the uninhabited island of Fandadik, located approximately four nautical miles from Pulap. 

Coordinating the search, the U.S. Coast Guard enlisted the help of commercial vessels participating in the AMVER program and requested air support from the Navy to search the waters in the region.

Three days later, the men were spotted by a Navy P-8A aircrew on Thursday as they waved life jackets and stood next to a large “help” sign made of palm leaves.

A small boat was then able to recover the men from the island with no reported injuries.

“Ingenuity of these men to build their sign and the preparedness of having lifejackets also contributed to their safe rescue,”  ( the Coast Guard said in a statement on Facebook.
U.S. Navy plane took this photo

Agelbert NOTE: As an experienced (light twin air taxi) pilot having flown over, near and along palm tree lined beaches of the tropics often, I can tell you the "HELP" letters were seen from an aircraft that had to be flying BELOW 1,000 feet.

You can barely see anything the size of those letters above that.  :(

To see what I mean, just go to Google Earth and look at the numbers on an airport runway.

THOSE numbers (each number measures about 60 feet by 20 feet - at large airports with twin runways they have a letter "L" for "left" or "R" for "right" of the same size along the runway centerline)  CAN be seen easily up to 5,000 feet above.

A small boat from Pulap recovers three men from the uninhabited island of Fanadik after they were discovered by a U.S. Navy plane. (U.S. Navy)

The letters on that picture are not white on a black background; they are black on a sandy brownish background. This makes them harder to spot. The size of each letter, assuming the person nearby is about 6 feet tall, is about 12 feet by 7 feet. That severely limits the height at which they can be spotted by the unaided eye.

Free advice for you Doomers that don't want to be seen : Keep your lines small, curvy and discontinuous for your buildings and other infrastructure. That is the basis of all camouflaging techniques.   8)
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on April 22, 2016, 10:20:56 pm

What are the most ironic ways people have died throughout history?   ???

Luc Sánchez

From: 10 Most Ironic Deaths In The History That Are Hard To Believe


The owner of the Segway company, Jimi Heseldon, died after he drove off a cliff while riding a Segway.

Garry Hoy, a lawyer in a Toronto law firm, died while attempting to prove to a group of students that the glass in the Toronto-Dominion Centre was unbreakable. Hoy threw himself through a glass wall on the 24th story. The glass did not break, but the window frame gave away and Hoy fell to his death.

Jerome Moody drowned at a pool party. The irony in this is that the pool party was held by lifeguards celebrating their first drowning-free swimming season. His body was found at the bottom of the pool after the party ended.

Michael Anderson Godwin, a convicted murderer who was at first sentenced to an electric chair but later had his sentence overturned to life imprisonment, accidentally electrocuted himself while sitting on a metal toilet seat in his prison cell.

Jim Fixx, a guy who wrote a best-selling book on the benefits of jogging, died from a heart attack while jogging.  :o  :P

Fagilyu Mukhametzyanov, a woman wrongly declared dead by doctors, died of shock from a heart attack after waking up at her own funeral.  :(

Clement Vallandighan, a lawyer that was representing a defendant in the court against murder case, shot himself while trying to prove to the jury that the victim had accidentally shot himself and his client was innocent. He died but he won the case.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 24, 2016, 10:41:43 pm
WATCH: Ship Scuttled With Two People Still Stuck On Board!  :o

May 23, 2016 by Mike Schuler

The former flagship of the Yugoslav Navy was scuttled in Croatia’s Polje Bay in spectacular fashion over the weekend where it will now serve as a dive attraction.

Thousands were on hand to witness the event, which went off without a hitch. That is unless you consider the two guys who were still on board when the explosions went off!

Luckily boats in the area raced to save the men as the ship sank quickly. They survived, but man it was close.

Update: Here’s a closer look at the two guys stuck on board the ship and how they escaped.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on June 18, 2016, 06:27:33 pm
WATCH: Big OOPS as Bulk Carrier sinks during loading:  :o  :P
Don't miss the "Safety First" huge letters. Ah, the ironies of the REAL real world.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on June 29, 2016, 01:53:12 pm
To those who enjoy my posts.

I have been a bit under the weather of late.  :(

My wife has been tending to me and I hope to be recovered soon (hopefully, in about a week), God willing.

Until then, my posts will probably be infrequent. Physical pain only slightly ameliorated by analgesics, continual discomfort and lack of sleep inhibit my ability to post.  :P

Be well. For a while, I won't be.    (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on July 04, 2016, 11:11:50 pm

Thank God and my wife's herbal remedies! I have been returned to pain free health.  (

I will now get back to the business (somewhat quixotic, but considering the times, the only principled thing to do) at hand.  (

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on July 05, 2016, 01:01:30 am

Thank God and my wife's herbal remedies! I have been returned to pain free health.  (

I will now get back to the business (somewhat quixotic, but considering the times, the only principled thing to do) at hand.  (

Nice 2 have you back in the saddle AG!   (


Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on July 27, 2016, 06:31:37 pm
46 Rescued from Bering Sea After Abandoning Sinking Fishing Vessel (

July 27, 2016 by Mike Schuler

A still image from Coast Guard video (at article link) shows the crew of the Alaska Juris abandoning ship in the Bering Sea, July 26, 2016. U.S. Coast Guard Image

The U.S. Coast Guard along with good samaritan vessels responded  Tuesday to 46 crewmembers aboard a commercial fishing vessel who were forced to abandon ship in the Bering Sea near Kiska Island, approximately 690 miles west of Dutch Harbor, Alaska.

All 46 crewmembers were transferred to the merchants ships Spar Canis and Vienna Express to be transported to Adak, Alaska.

Photo of (guess which    (  bulk carrier ship

The U.S. Coast Guard says it received an EPIRB alert from fishing vessel Alaska Juris around 11:30 a.m. Alaska time and contacted the crew directly to confirm they were in distress, donning survival suits and abandoning ship.

The Coast Guard Cutter Midgett and a HC-130 Hercules airplane from Air Station Kodiak were diverted to the vessel’s location, while MH-60 Jayhawk helicopters were launched to Adak as a staging and refueling area.

MH-60 Jayhawk helicopters
Watchstanders also issued an urgent marine information broadcast to vessels in the area, diverting the motor vessels Spar Canis, Vienna Express, Seafisher and Ocean Peace to assist.

The quick response led to the rescue of 46 crewmembers without injury.  (   

Weather on scene was reported as calm seas and limited visibility.

Some video of the rescue released by the Coast Guard is below:

The cause of the vessel taking on water is under investigation.

“The crew of the Alaska Juris did the right thing by calling for help, putting on their immersion suits and safely abandoning the ship,” said Lt. Greg Isbell, District 17 command duty officer. “Emergencies can occur at any time in Alaska’s vast and extreme environment, and the good Samaritans’ willingness to respond to the UMIB was paramount to getting the Alaska Juris crew to safety.”

Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation is monitoring the case closely.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on July 28, 2016, 09:13:34 pm
WATCH: Tugs Pull Grounded MV Benita From Mauritius Coast

July 27, 2016 by Mike Schuler

A salvage team from Five Oceans Salvage refloats the wrecked MV Benita from the southern shore of Mauritius, Monday, July 25, 2016.

The ship ran aground June 17, 2016 after a crew member attacked others on board before locking himself in the engine room, where he damaged equipment that resulted in the ship losing propulsion and eventually running aground.

Update: Tow to Alang Shipbreakers Proving Troublesome for Wrecked MV Benita

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on August 04, 2016, 01:56:36 pm

WATCH: New Giant Sized container ship built and launched.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on August 10, 2016, 08:27:19 pm
WATCH (at article link): Drone Video Shows How Giant Containerships Enter Panama Canal’s New Locks

August 9, 2016 by Mike Schuler

Check out this drone video posted by Panama Canal Administrator Jorge Luis Quijano showing a neopanamax containership entering the expanded Panama Canal’s new Agua Clara locks from Gatun Lake on the Atlantic side of the waterway.

Administrator Quijano says the video illustrates the excellent work by Panama Canal ship pilots, but I actually think the video does a better job of showing the challenges of maneuvering ships through the locks using the new tugboat system.

The Panama Canal Authority has been under fire over the longstanding safety concerns related to the new piloting system, which as you can see uses tugboats instead of mules (locomotives) to maneuver ships into and through the locks. A report released earlier this year by the International Transport Workers’ Federation seemingly confirmed these concerns even further, concluding that the safety of maneuverability within the locks is compromised due to factors such as the locks’ dimensions and insufficient bollard pull of the tugboats under certain environmental conditions.

Unfortunately for the ACP, these safety concerns were realized in July when a large China COSCO Shipping containership suffered a large gash in its hull after hitting a wall while entering the Agua Clara locks during a northbound transit – basically the exact same maneuver that is seen in the video above.

But the ACP has mostly dismissed these concerns, and last weekend met with some of its biggest customers to reiterate their confidence in the Canal’s operations, the waterway’s stellar safety record (an incident rate of just 0.1% in FY 2015), and the Panama Canal Authority’s highly-trained workforce.

At this time it’s hard to say what the future will hold for the expanded Panama Canal. But in the meantime, let us know what you think of the new piloting system by sharing and commenting on social media.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on August 10, 2016, 09:12:19 pm
WATCH (at article link): Drone Video Shows How Giant Containerships Enter Panama Canal’s New Locks

August 9, 2016 by Mike Schuler

Check out this drone video posted by Panama Canal Administrator Jorge Luis Quijano showing a neopanamax containership entering the expanded Panama Canal’s new Agua Clara locks from Gatun Lake on the Atlantic side of the waterway.

Administrator Quijano says the video illustrates the excellent work by Panama Canal ship pilots, but I actually think the video does a better job of showing the challenges of maneuvering ships through the locks using the new tugboat system.

The Panama Canal Authority has been under fire over the longstanding safety concerns related to the new piloting system, which as you can see uses tugboats instead of mules (locomotives) to maneuver ships into and through the locks. A report released earlier this year by the International Transport Workers’ Federation seemingly confirmed these concerns even further, concluding that the safety of maneuverability within the locks is compromised due to factors such as the locks’ dimensions and insufficient bollard pull of the tugboats under certain environmental conditions.

Unfortunately for the ACP, these safety concerns were realized in July when a large China COSCO Shipping containership suffered a large gash in its hull after hitting a wall while entering the Agua Clara locks during a northbound transit – basically the exact same maneuver that is seen in the video above.

But the ACP has mostly dismissed these concerns, and last weekend met with some of its biggest customers to reiterate their confidence in the Canal’s operations, the waterway’s stellar safety record (an incident rate of just 0.1% in FY 2015), and the Panama Canal Authority’s highly-trained workforce.

At this time it’s hard to say what the future will hold for the expanded Panama Canal. But in the meantime, let us know what you think of the new piloting system by sharing and commenting on social media.

Enjoyed it, thanks...    (

Glad to be of service.    ( Those tugs can really get up and go when they want to. It was interesting watching the tugs keep the sides of the container ship lined up as the WALL got closer and closer to the tugs on either side.

I imagine the tugboat captain ( sweats bullets timing this just right.  :o
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on September 22, 2016, 02:27:19 pm
World’s Biggest Ship Lift Opens in China

September 21, 2016 by Mike Schuler

Photo of the ship lift at the Three Gorges Dam in China is the world’s largest (at article link).

Officials in China have began testing the world’s largest ship lift at the massive Three Gorges Dam in Central China.

The shiplift can lift vessels up to 3,000 tons across a vertical distance of 113 meters from the reservoir to the river below. The ship chamber itself has a pool of water 120-meters long by 18-meters wide and 3.5-meters deep. The lift was built to accommodate mostly small and medium-sized vessels, as larger ships use the dam’s adjacent five-tiered lock system to navigate the waterway. In addition to boosting capacity, the new lift is also expected to reduce transit time for most vessels from several hours to under one hour.

Trials of the lift began last Sunday after more than a decade of planning and construction. Check out this video below:

Spanning the Yangtze River, the Three Gorges Dam is the world’s largest hydropower project. Although the dam has been in commission since 2003, the power station opened in 2012 and in 2014 it set a new world record by producing 98.8 TWh of power.

Of course the world’s largest hydro-power dam is not without its share of controversy. While it is marveled by some for its amazing feat of engineering, the dam is notoriously debated both in China and overseas over issues related to its location and development, the displacement of people, and the ecological and environmental impacts that it has had on the area.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on September 23, 2016, 01:40:00 pm
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 03, 2016, 06:20:54 pm
A search engine that respects your privacy!  (   

(long read)  8)

Inside DuckDuckGo, Google's Tiniest, Fiercest Competitor

John Paul Titlow 02.20.14 9:35 AM

In 2008, launching a search engine seemed like a crazy idea. Here's how Gabriel Weinberg proved the critics wrong.  ;D


When Gabriel Weinberg launched a search engine in 2008, plenty of people thought he was insane. How could DuckDuckGo, a tiny, Philadelphia-based startup, go up against Google? One way, he wagered, was by respecting user privacy. Six years later, we're living in the post-Snowden era, and the idea doesn't seem so crazy.

In fact, DuckDuckGo is exploding.

Looking at a chart of DuckDuckGo's daily search queries, the milestones are obvious. A $3 million investment from Union Square Ventures in 2011. Just prior to that, a San Francisco billboard campaign. Inclusion in Time's 50 Best Websites of 2011. Each of these things moved the traffic needle for DuckDuckGo, but none of them came close to sparking anything like the massive spike in queries the company saw last July. That's when Edward Snowden first revealed the NSA's extensive digital surveillance program to the world. The little blue line on the chart hasn't stopped climbing north since.


"Every year, we've grown 200-500%," Weinberg says. "The numbers keep getting bigger." As of early February, DuckDuckGo was seeing more than 4 million search queries per day. One year ago, that number had just barely broken 1 million.

Surprisingly, the sudden success didn't send the site crashing down. Nor did it change the company's stripped-down, razor-sharp focus. Here's how one small company is slowly, surely beating its way into the most monopolized category in technology.

Three Ideas In One: Where DuckDuckGo Came From

Weinberg didn't originally set out to build a search engine. After shuttering one failed startup and selling another to for $10 million in 2006, the MIT grad found himself exploring several new ideas. Across multiple projects, he focused on structured data, Quora-style Q&A, and programmatically combating spam.

"I started all of these projects independently and none of them really took off," Weinberg says. "Then I realized, maybe if I put them all together, there might be an interesting search experience there."

The result was DuckDuckGo, a search engine offering direct answers to people's queries, rather than merely delivering a list of links. Below these so-called "Instant Answers," the site still displays traditional, link-by-link search results syndicated from third parties like Bing and Yandex but, crucially, they're filtered and reorganized to reduce spam.

( (

DuckDuckGo (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 05, 2016, 07:23:40 pm
Amazing Bridge Span Positioning Machine!  :o  (

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 12, 2016, 02:49:39 pm
Up to 80,000 Trout Escape After Cargo Ship Crashes Into Fish Farm in Denmark

October 11, 2016 by Reuters
The vessel involved in the incident is reported to be the MV Karmel, a Maltese-flagged general cargo ship. Photo: van Bezooijen

ReutersCOPENHAGEN, Oct 11 (Reuters) – Danish anglers could be in for the fishing trip of their lives in a few days’ time, after a ship crashed into a fish farm and caused up to 80,000 rainbow trout to escape into the open sea.

The cargo vessel, sailing from the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad on the Baltic Sea to Kolding in Denmark, collided with the fish farm between the Danish islands Funen and Jutland on Tuesday, aquafarming firm Snaptun Fisk told Reuters.

The trout, weighing about 3 kg (6.6 lb) each, had been due to be slaughtered this week and were worth up to 10 million Danish crowns ($1.5 million), said Tim Petersen, co-owner and director at Snaptun Fisk.

“We will seek compensation from the shipowners,” ( he told Reuters.

The incident could damage the sea habitat, said Danish Technical University Aqua researcher Jon Svendsen. The escapees are likely to disturb the eggs and young of wild sea trout. (

The rainbow trout, unused to life in the open sea, should only survive a few months.

“All sports fishermen should get out there with their gear and start fishing,” Soren Knabe, director of fishing association Vandpleje Fyn, told local broadcaster TV2/Fyn.

The trout will begin to bite after four to five days as they adjust to life in open waters, said Ulrik Jeppesen, a local angler, recalling similar previous incidents.

“I see this as a bit of a tragedy (for the environment), to be honest,” he said. “But I will probably make a trip or two out there.” (Reporting by Annabella Pultz Nielsen and Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen; editing by Andrew Roche)

(c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2016.

Agelbert NOTE: Is rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) a freshwater or saltwater fish? ???

Oncorhynchus mykiss

Rainbow trout usually mature at age 3 to 5 and grow to about 6 to 16 inches long, .... born in rivers but later venture out to the ocean and adapt to the salt water.

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 30, 2016, 04:31:37 pm
Another Earthquake Shakes Italy :o :o :(







     L'Aquila Mayor Massimo Cialente, left, talks on the phone while surveying damage after the earthquake rattled the town on Oct. 30, 2016.  Alberto Orsini, epa

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 17, 2016, 05:48:51 pm
El Faro Container Ship sank October 1, 2015 in a hurricane.

El Faro, Top 10 Failures Of The NTSB Investigation – gLive E21

December 16, 2016 by gCaptain

Agelbert NOTE: For full background info on the following video, see the post after the video. The full transcript shows that massive waves were striking the El Faro over an hour before it sank. Beyond some talk about "seas near Alaska", the crew never estimates the size of those waves.

Cargo ship severely listing as El Faro did shortly before sinking in a hurricane.

A wave that hit the ship causing a list of over 38 degrees is mentioned as a historical occurrence but at no time does the crew, or the NTSB that heard the full transcript, (except with "uhhhh" and "are you okay?" and "do you want a chair? - to the helmsman") directly mention wave height as a clear and present danger.

Admittedly, it was dark until the last hour or so, so they had no way of visual measurement. But as experienced mariners, they should have intuited wave height from the pounding.

When the ship was hulled, obviously it was caused by a powerful wave.

I do not understand why the NTSB doesn't not want to talk about wage height and damage unless they were told NOT to mention it because of the link between climate change and increasingly dangerous destructive waves. In the following video, the fact that the fuel is stored inside a double hull is pointed at as a major fault in the ship design. The containers are stored two hulls away from the sea. BUT, the fuel is only ONE hull from the sea.

SO, if the outer hull is pierced, the fuel gets contaminated and you lose power. This is a potential death sentence in rough seas. This happened to the El Faro.

But anyone reading/listening to the transcript of the last few hours will note the massive hits they (low frequency sounds recorded and helmsman difficulties) got BEFORE they lost power.

In fact, the ship was hulled BEFORE it lost power. So the wave height should be considered as the primary cause of the eventual sinking instead of the admittedly faulty design of storing fuel in between hulls (a stupidity born of crude oil tanker design documented by an MIT graduated expert in a book he wrote - mentioned in the video).

NTSB Releases El Faro VDR Bridge Audio Transcript; Opens Investigation Docket

December 13, 2016 by gCaptain

Agelbert NOTE: EVERYTHING said on the bridge during the last several harrowing hours is posted. The crew did all they could, but the storm was too strong.

Climate Change will make the oceans more and more hostile to shipping as the years go by. Yes, giant waves making shipping difficult to impossible have been predicted by Climate Scientists to increase, in frequency, size and duration, as a Climate Change consequence of Global Warming.

Here's my three part article that contains a lot of info on shipping that you may be interested in reading, as well as the references to recent, peer reviewed scientific studies predicting giant waves:

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity: Three Part Article (

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity: PART TWO (

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity: PART THREE (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 21, 2016, 01:50:19 pm
A "Deregulated" Regulus Cruise Missile "sending a message" ( (

What’s the Fastest Way to Deliver Mail?

Domestic U.S. Air Mail was formally established as a class of service by the United States Post Office on 15 May 1918, when bags of mail were flown between Washington, Philadelphia, and New York.

In 1959, the U.S. Navy took postal delivery to the next level by packing a Regulus I cruise missile with mail aboard the submarine USS Barbero, docked at Norfolk, Virginia, and launching it to the naval air station in Mayport, Florida.

The missile, containing 3,000 letters symbolically addressed to President Dwight D. Eisenhower and other government officials, made the 100-mile (161 km) trip in 22 minutes. Although "rocket mail" never caught on as a practical method of postal delivery, the experiment succeeded as a not-so-subtle way to show off the U.S. military’s state-of-the-art missile guidance system during the Cold War.

The first and only missile mail:

•The storage space used for the mail was originally designed to hold the missile’s nuclear warhead. The Regulus was capable of sending mass destruction to a target 600 miles (966 km) away.

•U.S. Postmaster General Arthur Summerfield was ecstatic, saying, “Before man reaches the Moon, mail will be delivered within hours from New York to California, to Britain, to India or Australia by guided missiles.” It was, however, the only time a missile has carried mail in the United States.

•Some of the Regulus I letters have found their way into private collections in the years since, and have sold for $100 USD or more.

Agelbert SNARK: The Trump kleptocratic Administration, after studying the Eisenhower Administration  ;D, has figured out a way to keep the "defense" contractors in bidness without having to bomb brown people. ;)

FEDEX, the winner of the contract,  has shown no interest in painting their corporate logo on the Deregulated Regulus because, according to a corporate cost/benefit analysis spokesman, "The things go too fast to be seen well".

Of course, FEDEX will be given appropriate "subsidies", like the other Brave and Loyal National Security Servants, the Fossil Fuel Industry. (

After all, the "job creators" ( must preserve all the "jobs" that are "created" with OUR tax dollars.

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 09, 2017, 05:15:45 pm
Now if I can just stay clear of those cows, this should work out all right.  :D

How Newsworthy Were the Wright Brothers’
First Flights? ???

It may surprise you to learn that news of the first-ever powered airplane flight was not covered by the mainstream press.

It was actually a beekeeper named A.I. Root ( who first wrote about Orville and Wilbur Wright’s early flights in the pages of his obscure journal Gleanings in Bee Culture. Although Root didn’t witness the first flight at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, in December 1903, he was on hand in September 1904 when the brothers took a plane up and circled around, returning to their starting place.

The Wright brothers had obtained permission to use a local cow pasture known as Huffman Prairie, a few miles outside Dayton, Ohio. The owner did not charge them, but he did ask that the Wrights make sure his livestock were not harmed. Root witnessed several other flights at Huffman Prairie and reported the successes in his beekeeping journal.

The first family of fearless flying:  (

•The Wrights built a hangar at Huffman Prairie and began experimenting with their second airplane. They started to use a catapult device to assist with takeoff in lighter winds.

•The Wrights added weight to the front of their 1904 Flyer to shift the center of gravity forward and increase stability. They also moved the elevator farther ahead of the wings, which made the plane easier to fly.

•It took 49 flights for the Wrights to equal their Kitty Hawk flight time. The first circular flight lasted 1 minute, 36 seconds and covered 4,080 feet (1.2 km).

Agelbert NOTE: Cows do not take kindly to being buzzed by airplanes. Back in 1966, the flight school I was attending at Opa Locka airport in Florida received numerous complaints from ranchers north of us (what was designated as the "practice area" for student pilots) between North Miami and Ft. Lauderdale (mostly open land at that time). The cows were being buzzed and having abortions. I never buzzed any cows or people. But there are stupid, empathy deficit disordered people in every profession, I guess. The only time you were supposed to be below 600 feet (the lowest altitude for ground reference maneuvers like turns about a point, pylon eights and S turns above a road) was when you were simulating an emergency landing (you got to about a 100 feet and then applied power when the instructor was satisfied that you would survive the forced landing and possibly not damage the aircraft).

I never went anywhere near a cow or a person. I saw cows and people and was perfectly aware of where they were at so I assume some idiots thought is was "fun" to buzz them. So it goes. There are way too many Homo SAPS among Homo Sapiens. (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on February 24, 2017, 08:11:50 pm
Watch: Stricken ‘Tide Carrier’ Rockin’ and Rollin’ Off Norway  :o

February 23, 2017 by Mike Schuler

Some new video posted by Norway’s Hovedredningssentralen (spelling?) shows just how hairy the situation was yesterday for the stricken Tide Carrier off Norway. As we reported, the 263-meter barge carrier was dragging anchor dangerously close to shore just south of Bergen while dealing with some heavy weather. During the day helicopters evacuated all non-essential personnel and dropped […]
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on March 16, 2017, 02:54:23 pm
Microsoft, Please Stop Breaking My PC With Windows 10’s Automatic Updates


Hey  ( Microsoft ( , could you please stop breaking my PC? The latest WPD driver update released on March 8, 2017 is just the latest in a long string of bad updates. If Windows 10 is going to force these updates on my system, the least Microsoft could do is test them properly first.

Don’t get us wrong: automatic updates are very important for security reasons, and we believe they are a good thing. The problem is that Microsoft isn’t just releasing security updates. They’re making major changes to Windows, and not testing the updates properly. They need to do better.

Full article:


Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on March 31, 2017, 05:23:07 pm
Cargo Ship Collision Caught on Video

March 30, 2017 by Mike Schuler

Some incredible video coming from Nicaragua earlier this week showing a collision between a general cargo ship and smaller passenger vessel on the Escondido River.

The incident was captured on video by a passenger of the smaller vessel, identified as the Captain D:

The Nicaraguan Navy confirmed the incident occurred Tuesday morning on Nicaragua’s Escondido River approximately 25 miles east of El Rama. All 4o passengers and crew members of the Captain D were rescued before the ship sank a few hours of the crash, the Navy said.

The Antigua and Barbuda-flagged Jan Caribe has a gross tonnage of 2770. The ship was built in 1988.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on April 04, 2017, 06:19:37 pm
Scary Video: Disabled Sailboat Gets Tossed Into California Pier  :o

April 3, 2017 by Mike Schuler (

Some scary video coming out of Redondo Beach, California shows a sailboat with four people on board get tossed through the pier’s pilings after the disabled boat drifted into the break.

Amazingly all four people managed to escape without serious injury or worse.  (
A full 8-minute version of the video shows the people scramble to reach the beach as the sailboat gets swamped in the surf.

According to reports the incident occurred Saturday just after 7 p.m.

The full video is below: ( (

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on April 25, 2017, 12:52:46 pm
Viral Video: Out-of-Control Ferry Slams Head On Into Pier  :o

April 24, 2017 by Mike Schuler

Over a dozen people were injured Friday when an out-of-control ferry slammed into a breakwater at Las Palmas in the Canary Islands.

The accident was captured on video which went viral over the weekend, picking up nearly 1 million views on Youtube alone.

Spanish autorities say 13 people sustained injuries when the Volcán de Tamasite lost control and allided head on with the concrete pier.

The owner of the ferry, Naviera Armas, has blamed the accident on a loss of electrical power.

The ferry was reportedly carrying about 140 passengers when the accident occurred. A small oil slick was observed in the area.

The Volcán de Tamasite has been in service since 2004.

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on April 25, 2017, 08:00:57 pm
Palloy, thank you for that bit of karmic news. It made my day.  (


Webroot 'mistakenly' flags Windows as Malware and Facebook as Phishing site
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on April 26, 2017, 06:57:14 pm
Why are Lifeboats Killing Seafarers? (

April 25, 2017 by Editorial

By Nick Yatsenko, Master Mariner

During my life at sea, I was always anxious during lifeboat drills. One of my relatives was employed on a MSC container carrier as an Engineer Watchkeeper, and during his routine inspection inside the free-fall lifeboat, the craft suddenly released and fell into the water while a ship was underway.

He was lucky enough to survive and suffered only severe injury to his knee, and since the vessel was close to the shore so he was evacuated by the helicopter. In the hospital, he had a surgery and then spent another year recovering.

When I was working for Maersk Line, one of our ships reported that a rescue boat accident resulted in one crewmember being killed instantly. Another crewmember was seriously injured.

Unfortunately, there is no comprehensive statistics on lifeboat accidents, but there is an ample amount of research showing a scary outcome. To name a few studies, from 1992-2004, marine insurer Gard “recorded 32 cases of accidental release of lifeboats. Five cases were without injury to people (there are certainly much more, but these five have been reported because they involved P&I claims), the others caused 12 deaths and injury to 74 people. Among the people injured there were several very serious cases of head and spine injury, some causing paralysis or possibly leading to death at a later stage. There were also a few cases where members’ vessels have picked up drifting lifeboats at sea – boats which had obviously fallen from the ships they belonged to.”

In 2001, the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) published a review of a lifeboat and launching systems accidents covering a 10-year period from 1991, where seven people were killed and 10 injured.

Some of the recent cases of lifeboat accidents:

•Thomson Majesty Accident – Five Crew Killed During Lifeboat Drill on Cruise Ship

•Lifeboat Drill Accident: One Killed, Four Injured in Fall Aboard Harmony of the Seas

•Rescue Boat Accident on Norwegian Breakaway Injures Four.

•Lifeboat Accident on NCL’s Pride of America Sends Two Crew Members to Hospital

•MTM Westport: Fourth Seafarer/Lifeboat Death in Two Months

•Sailor Killed, Two Others Injured in Apparent Lifeboat Accident Off Germany

•Lifeboat Failure Leads to Fatalities Aboard Ensco Rig

(links to all the above at article link)

As the most of the accidents occurred during routine drills and maintenance activities, the main causes are design failure, lack of maintenance, and lack of proper training. “The equipment failure was reported to be the most common cause of accidents, within which quick release mechanism failure was identified as the most frequent cause,” according to a report by the Nautical Institute.

In response to the growing number of lifeboat accidents, the IMO has released new SOLAS Regulation III/1.5 and the amendments to Chapter IV of the LSA Code concern on-load release mechanisms fitted to new and existing cargo and passengers vessels. SOLAS Regulation III/1.5 also specifies other important dates:

1.“For ships constructed on or after 1 July 2014, on-load release and retrieval systems shall comply with the LSA Code, as amended by Resolution MSC.320(89); and

2.Member Governments are encouraged to ensure that ships constructed on or after 20 May 2011 but before 1 July 2014, on-load release and retrieval systems shall comply with the LSA Code, as amended by Resolution MSC.320(89).”

3.For vessels constructed prior to 20 May 2011, any on-load release systems that do not comply with paragraphs to of the revised LSA Code must be replaced at the first scheduled drydocking after 1 July 2014, but no later than 1 July 2019.

For the ships which are awaiting for the modification or fitting of the new design on-load release mechanism, the IMO has issued the “Guidelines for Evaluation and Replacement of Lifeboat Release and Retrieval Systems” and advise that Fall Preventer Devices (FPDs) are to be used with each existing RRS, in accordance with MSC.1/Circ.1327 “Guidelines for the Fitting and Use of Fall Preventer Devices (FPDs)”.

Some of the current requirements for the lifeboat/rescue boat inspections and maintenance are:

•Davit-launched lifeboats weekly moved from stowed position (SOLAS III/20.6.3)

•Monthly rescue boats other than a lifeboats launching (SOLAS III/

•Quarterly launching lifeboats & rescue boats (SOLAS III/ & .6, MSC/Circ. 1206)

•Six monthly free-fall lifeboat drill (SOLAS III/, MSC/Circ. 1206) (

Considering all the accidents, do you think it is viable to break the boats from its stowed position every week?    ( Or even worse to launch them with the crew inside every 3 months? (

The Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) went even further and recommended that the IMO undertake a study on the present value ;)  (, need and desirability of lifeboats. (

While I’m not ready to argue the present value of the lifeboats, I’m confident that only a change in on-load hooks design is not good enough. Many accidents occurred due to the failed winch operation, damaged wire or some minor imperfection such as remote wire control. I believe more radical changes are required, for example:

•Reduce requirement for the davit-launched lifeboats to be moved from stowed position from weekly to monthly or even quarterly.

•Reduce the launching of the lifeboats & rescue boats from quarterly and monthly respectively to annually. Or even more radically, test the off-load and on-load release mechanism by shore contractor only while the boat in stowed position, of course with the additional securing arrangements. Therefore completely removing the requirements to launch the boat with the crew inside.  (

The crew has been trained how to use the survival craft during their STCW courses which are compulsory. During the external inspections the inspector, such as port state control can test the knowledge by asking relative questions. I’m very confident that in a case of emergency the crew would be able to lower the boat, start the engine, let go the hooks and steer away from the vessel.

This was originally published at

To give you a bit of a visualization of lifeboat accidents, watch the videos below and imagine you are inside one of these boats.

Agelbert NOTE: This is a nice article about the dangers of practicing lifeboat drills.

In passing, let me say that the baloney about "present value" and "desirability" of lifeboats sounds like something some greedy manager working for Trump would come up with. ( It's just like these greed balls to use the drill accidents as an excuse to go back to cheap open top lifeboats.  (

I think they left something out of the article, although they came up with some reasonable solutions to the problem.

What they didn't mention was that the old kind of open top lifeboat doesn't save ANYBODY in rough seas. The whole point of making these lifeboats that are sealed and launch free fall off a ship is to survive gigantic seas that the ship is sinking in.

That said, the injuries sustained in practice are really unnecessary because any dummy used for car crash tests or aircraft crash tests is what should be there in the drills (to see if injuries would have occurred and try to learn how to avoid them through extra harnesses and/or padding).

These boats hit the water hard. Every seaman knows what the deceleration is going to be and he is trained to brace when the lifeboat releases. So, yeah, stop putting people in there when you are practicing.

A once a year spin around the bay in a lifeboat by crew members is enough to teach them what to do once they have launched, which is the whole idea behind surviving the sinking of a ship.

The other problem is a mechanical one with something they call davit launching. I say put explosive bolts on the things and when you've got to release, IF THE MECHANISM DOESN'T WORK, BLOW THE CONNECTING CABLES AND GET THE HELL AWAY FROM THE SHIP!

Open the pod bay doors, HAL! (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on April 29, 2017, 05:13:29 pm
Watch: Skillful Navigation Between a Rock and an Iceberg in Antarctica

April 28, 2017 by gCaptain

In this video you can hear the Captain skillfully direct the helmsman while navigating through the Lemaire Channel between an iceberg and luna Booth Island off the Antarctic peninsula. Video filmed in March 2017.

Agelbert NOTE: Notice the sound and vibration when some of those rudder commands are executed.  8)
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 09, 2017, 03:56:06 pm
WATCH: Giant Crane Collapses After Being Hit by Ship at Jebel Ali

May 8, 2017 by Mike Schuler

An investigation has been launched after a CMA CGM containership struck a ship-to-shore crane while berthing at Jebel Ali in the United Arab Emirates, causing the giant to collapse.

The UK-flagged CMA CGM Centaurus contacted the quay while berthing at Jebel Ali on Thursday, May 4, causing the crane to collapse suddenly. A second crane was also shifted off its rails during the incident but remained upright and stable.

Amazingly there were no serious injuries even though there were many workers around at the time of the incident.

The dramatic incident was caught on video:

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on July 04, 2017, 02:48:24 pm

Can Going to the Theater Be a Traumatic Experience?

British playwrights and directors Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan first staged their theatrical adaptation of George Orwell’s classic dystopian novel 1984 in 2013, and the production played successfully to British and international audiences. However, the play, said to be true to the original writing, did not make it to Broadway until June 2017. After Donald Trump took office in the United States and the concept of “alternative facts” came to light, interest in 1984 and the kind of “thoughtcrime” described in the book skyrocketed. The Broadway production of 1984 has been described as an assault on the senses, with flashing strobe lights, a thundering jackhammer, and a lot of blood. Some theatergoers have had extreme reactions -- fainting, vomiting, and unrest have all been spawned by the play's unrelenting violence.

An intense night at the theater:

In Orwell’s dystopian classic, protagonist Winston Smith is brutally tortured for resisting the totalitarian regime led by Big Brother. While some adaptations have toned down the violence, the Hudson Theater production does not.

“The torture scenes are visceral, ghastly, and hair-raisingly vivid,” wrote one critic.

In the wake of Trump’s election, the book climbed to the top of Amazon’s bestseller list -- nearly 70 years after it was first published.


Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on July 18, 2017, 07:10:22 pm
Agelbert NOTE: Trisomy 21 is an inherited condition (Down syndrome) that is not limited to lack of normal vocabulary skills. People with this used to be called "Mongoloids". Thankfully, that abusive term has been eliminated from civilized discourse.
The term Mongolian idiocy and similar terms have been used to refer to a specific type of mental deficiency associated with the genetic disorder now more commonly referred to as Down syndrome. The use of these terms has largely been abandoned because of their offensive and misleading implications about those with the disorder.

BUT, this excellent anecdote sheds some light on a particularly offensive and arrogant man we have all been forced to read about and listen to. ENJOY!  (  :D
How good an orator is Donald Trump?   (

Nikki Primrose, Donald Trump? God help us all.  (

Updated July 13, 2017

I have a sweet and beautiful aunt who just so happens to have Trisomy 21. Her name is Karen and she is in her forties, but her intellectual capabilities are more like those of a seven year-old. Her vocabulary is very simple and I'd estimate that 95% of her speech consists of fewer than 200 words.

My 6 year-old nephew Sam loves Karen, and they consider themselves BFFs (best of friends). Yesterday we were in the kitchen and a clip of Trump giving a rambling speech in the Rose Garden was playing on TV. I made a comment about how ridiculous he sounded, and Sam wagged his Cheeto covered finger at me and sternly told me not to say things like that. I had no idea the little dude had become a Trumpkin, so I asked him why. He put on his big boy voice and explained that “we don't make fun of people like Karen”.

When we asked why he thought the orange man on TV was like Karen, he said it was because he looked and spoke like her. We asked him to elaborate, and he said he looked like an old grown-up, but he sounded like “a little kid”. So according to Sam, Trump is not a great orator.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on August 03, 2017, 08:50:36 pm

Published on Aug 3, 2017

A massive fire has broken out at Dubai's 1,105ft tall Torch Tower.  :o

The blaze is thought to have started at around 1am local time (10pm BST) before shooting up one side of the 86 story building. Footage captured from the scene shows the flames illuminating the night's sky with debris cascading down onto the streets below. As the tower burned many gathered below to watch the fire engulf it.

Agelbert NOTE: Of course. THIS tower, unlike the WTC towers on 9/11, will "somehow" avoid collapsing like a ,uh, controlled demolition...


Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on September 15, 2017, 07:07:46 pm
SpaceX Blooper Reel – How Not to Land a Rocket at Sea  :P

By Mike Schuler on Sep 14, 2017 08:54 am

Elon Musk could be the only person in the world who could create a video like this and actually be cool about it, but I guess this is just the cost of doing business when you’re trying to sell your reusable space rockets to NASA. Then again this blooper reel is almost the epitome of the famous Elon Musk quote: “Failure is an option here. If things are not failing, you are not innovating enough.”(

SpaceX landed its first reusable Falcon 9 rocket on the “droneship” in 2016 and earlier this year it achieved its first successful reflight, which the company described as a major milestone on the road to full and rapid rocket reusability.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on September 17, 2017, 07:22:28 pm
Excellent closeup of a powerful tornado:  ( :o
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on September 23, 2017, 03:50:07 pm
IMO Issues New Warning on Bauxite Cargoes

September 22, 2017 by Mike Schuler

MV Bulk Jupiter. Photo credit: Gearbulk

The International Maritime Organization has issued a new warning that a newly-discovered phenomenon – different from cargo liquefaction – could cause bauxite cargoes to become unstable when carried in bulk on a ship, potentially causing the vessel to capsize and sink.

Bauxite, a type of rock, is one of the world’s major sources of aluminium with around 100 million tonnes transported annually by sea. Although extremely rare, bauxite cargoes have been known to liquify and shift during shipping, which can cause a vessel to capsize at a moments notice.

In 2015, the Bahamas-flagged MV Bulk Jupiter unexpectedly sank off the coast of Vietnam while transporting 46,000 metric tons of bauxite loaded in Malaysia. All but one of the ship’s 19 crew members were lost in the accident.

While bauxite has been classified under the International Maritime Solid Bulk Cargoes (IMSBC) Code as a low-risk Group C cargo, under certain circumstances, in rare cases it has been known to exhibit liquefaction characteristics similar to high-risk ‘Group A’ cargoes. The IMSBC Code is the industry rulebook on how to deal with bulk cargoes.

In response to the Bulk Jupiter accident, the IMO requested that the global bauxite industry undertake research into the behavior and characteristics of bauxite cargoes during ocean transportation, leading to the formation of the Global Bauxite Working Group (GBWG). The group presented its findings from its research to an IMO Sub-Committee this week.

According to their report, the group found that certain forms of bauxite with a large proportion of smaller particles could be subject to a newly-identified phenomenon of “dynamic separation” when there is excess moisture in the cargo.

In such conditions, a liquid slurry (water and fine solids) can form above the solid material, according to the report. The resulting free surface effect of liquid “sloshing about” could significantly affect the vessel’s stability, leading to the risk of the ship capsizing.

To raise awareness about the potential risks posed by moisture, IMO’s Sub-Committee on Carriage of Cargoes and Containers, which met this month at IMO Headquarters, issued new guidance on the carriage of bauxite in the form of a circular aimed at shippers, terminal operators, shipowners, ship operators, charterers, shipmasters and all other entities concerned.

The circular requests that extreme care and appropriate action be taken, taking into account the provisions of relevant IMO instruments, when handling and carrying bauxite in bulk.

The circular takes immediate effect, ahead of the next scheduled adoption (in 2019) of the new test methods and relevant schedules for bauxite cargoes during the routine scheduled updating of the International Maritime Solid Bulk Cargoes (IMSBC) Code.

The new circular updates a previous circular on the carriage of bauxite issued in 2015 following the Bulk Jupiter sinking, and invites Governments to note that some bauxite cargoes (specifically those with a larger proportion of smaller particles) present a risk caused by moisture and should be treated as Group A cargoes.

“Excess moisture in such cargoes can lead to a free surface slurry. This can cause atypical motion of the ship (wobbling). The master should take appropriate action in the event of this possible sign of cargo instability,” the IMO circular says.

The circular also includes the draft Test Procedure for Determining the transportable moisture limit (TML) for bauxite; the draft individual schedule for bauxite of Group A (Bulk Cargo Shipping Name “BAUXITE FINES”); and draft amendments to the existing individual schedule for bauxite of Group C (bauxite with a lower proportion of smaller particles and with a degree of saturation by moisture not liable to reach 70%).

For a copy of the GBWG Report on Research into the Behaviour of Bauxite during Shipping email

Agelbert NOTE: The hazards in the oceans will get much, much worse within less than a decade because of Catastrophic Climate Change.

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity: Part 3 of 3 parts (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on September 25, 2017, 11:06:59 pm
WATCH: Thunderstorms, Torrential Rain & Busy Traffic 4K Timelapse

September 24, 2017 by John Konrad

Read how it was done:
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on September 26, 2017, 10:16:45 pm

Bali volcanic eruption seems imminent, after massive seismic activity increase

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 02, 2017, 10:47:54 pm
Coast Guard Releases El Faro Investigation Report: Here’s the Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations

October 1, 2017 by gCaptain

SS El Faro. Photo: Tote Maritime

Full article at link below:

Agelbert NOTE: They unfortunately refuse to admit a giant wave hit El Faro, but at least they recommended, among other things, that these types of ships no longer have the open lifeboats, as I had hoped they would.  (

Excerpt from an article I wrote on future Ocean Wave activity:

* Agelbert NOTE: The container ship El Faro sank during Hurricane Juaquin on October 1, 2015. All 33 crewmembers perished. The lifeboats on El Faro were also 65 feet above the water line. From the condition of the lifeboat that was recovered, the evidence indicates a giant wave sank the El Faro. The authorities have not admitted this as of yet. But I am not the only one that strongly suspects that the condition of the lifeboat is evidence that a giant wave sank El Faro (Spanish for "Lighthouse"). 

Coast Guard Investigates El Faro Life Boat

Warming oceans are with us now and increasing the violence of the oceans. By chance, I recorded the SST (Sea Surface Temperature) off the East Coast of the USA the day before Hurricane Juaquin sank the El Faro container ship. Here's the September 30, 2015 (8 day average - proof  that it was really consistently hot out there!) screenshot:

Notice all that ocean surface at 27.8C (82F) hurricane forming minimum temperature or greater.

Here's two days later (one day after the El Faro Container ship sank). I superimposed the hurricane location. It is a one day average SST so the conditions when the El Faro sank are displayed.  I was not aware that the El Faro had been lost at the time I made these screenshots. Notice the cooler spot on the ocean precisely where Hurricane Juaquin is lashing El Faro. A hurricane transfers several degrees of water temperature directly to the atmosphere, which, in turn, increases the ferocity of the winds. Ferocious winds produce ferocious waves.


El Faro departed Jacksonville en route to San Juan, Puerto Rico.


The El Faro was one of TWO cargo ships that went down because of Hurricane Juaquin (the 215 ft. MV Minouche that went down didn't make national headlines, because people, perhaps, might start to get "unnecessarily alarmed" about the increasing shipping losses from our increasingly violent oceans). All 12 crew of the MV Minouche were rescued.

MV Minouche

The Coast Guard pilot's voice shakes as he describes conditions they have never before experienced in rescue attempts when they were searching for the El Faro and rescuing the crew of the MV Minouche.

US Coast Guard search for El Faro; 12 rescued from MV Minouche
The El Faro, that went down with a crew of 33, all lost, 294 cars, trailers and trucks, along with hundreds of containers, had a type of lifeboat that is a death boat in stormy seas.

Here's a comment by a fellow who's handle is deckofficer:

Hurricane Joaquin vs. M/V El Faro's final voyage, weather and decision-making...

I guess the only point I would like to make is some owners don't seem to value the lives of their crews. Schedules are tight and safety equipment is in many cases the bare minimum for certification. In the case of SS El Faro (it is my understanding this is a steam ship, not diesel) the open life boats as high on the super structure as they were meets requirements but certainly doesn't offer the all sea state conditions of deployment as free fall enclosed life boat capsules. If these souls are lost at sea, it is maddening that the simple added investment of better emergency egress would have saved their lives. I have done more lifeboat drills than I can remember, and for the older style gravity systems there was a good reason these drills only occurred on calm days.

When sea state is overwhelming and you have lost propulsion and need to abandon ship, do you want this....


Or this....


USCG Unlimited Tonnage Open Ocean (CMA)

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on November 01, 2017, 08:44:32 pm
Watch Earthquaqes from 2001 to 2015
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on November 06, 2017, 03:03:54 pm
That's getting closer to the truth, but what it really is is a FU CK ED UP SOCIETY problem.

There were plenty of gunz around 20 years ago, but you didn't see a mass shooting every month.  This is a manifestation of collapse psychology.


"Guns Don’t Kill People, People Do?"

What exactly is wrong with the "guns don’t kill people, people do" argument?

Everyone's heard it, a lot of people believe it, and some even think it settles the whole gun control debate. (After all, that’s why it’s the NRA’s slogan, and why people brandish it on bumper stickers and post it endlessly on facebook.) Others, however, think the argument is terrible. Interestingly, however, I can’t find a solid consensus regarding what exactly is wrong with it. Some think it begs the question, others think it equivocates, still others think it merely oversimplifies the issue. Consequently, especially as a logician, I think it’s an argument worth some examination. 

Some might not want to read any further, thinking that by using the Sandy Hook tragedy to argue for gun regulations I am politicizing that tragedy. There are a couple of things to say in response. First, I'm not going to argue for or against gun regulations. I am simply going to examine this argument. There may still be good arguments against gun regulation, or there may not. All I want to know is whether or not this argument is one. Secondly, the notion that the political ramifications of a tragedy should not be discussed in the wake of that tragedy is itself fallacious. We do need to make sure our heads are emotionally clear before having a serious discussion, but it is not disrespectful to the victims of a tragedy to discuss possible ways that we might avoid similar tragedies. Besides, tragedies such as Sandy Hook have now become so common that if we are not allowed to speak about gun regulations in the wake of such tragedies, we will never be allowed to speak about it at all. Truth be told, the notion that one shouldn't talk about such things after a tragedy is a political notion itself, one invented by those against gun regulations because they know that people are more in favor of gun regulations after such tragedies.

So let us turn to the argument itself: “Guns don’t kill people; people kill people.” The first thing to notice is that the argument has no stated conclusion. What follows? Since the argument is usually given in the context of a discussion about gun regulation, by gun advocates, I assume the conclusion has something to do with that. But what exactly? That there should be no gun regulation at all? That there should not be more gun regulation than there is? That the increase in mass killings done with guns is irrelevant to whether or not there should be gun regulations? Who knows? And an argument without an obvious conclusion is hardly an argument at all.

In any event, it doesn't matter because no conclusion about gun regulation logically follows from these two statements. To understand why, let me articulate the difference between ultimate, intermediate, and proximate causes. Consider the words you are looking at right now. What "caused" the words to appear as they are appearing to you right now? You might say that I, the author, did; but that is not the whole story. The whole story is long and includes my fingers typing on a keyboard, the creation of an MSWord document, me posting the words on my blog, and so on. There is a long "causal chain" standing between my intention to type these words and the emission of light from your screen to your eyes. The causal chain starts with me; I am the ultimate cause. Other subsequent links in the chain—my typing, Justin’s postings, your clicking—are “intermediate causes." And the light emitting from your screen is the proximate cause—the thing or event most immediately responsible for your current experience.

The argument under consideration clarifies that, when it comes to murders, people are the ultimate cause and guns are merely proximate causes—the end of a causal chain that started with a person deciding to murder. But nothing follows from these facts about whether or not guns should be regulated. Such facts are true for all criminal activity, and even noncriminal activity that harms others: The ultimate cause is found in some decision that a person made; the event, activity, or object that most directly did the harming was only a proximate cause. But this tells us nothing about whether or not the proximate cause in question should be regulated or made illegal. For example, consider the following argument:

"Bazookas don't kill people; people kill people."

Although it is obviously true that bazookas are only proximate causes, it clearly does not follow that bazookas should be legal. Yes, bazookas don't kill people, people do—but bazookas make it a lot easier for people to kill people, and in great numbers. Further, a bazooka would not be useful for much else besides mass murders. Bazookas clearly should be illegal and the fact that they would only be proximate causes to mass murders does not change this. In fact, it is totally irrelevant to the issue; it has nothing to do the fact that they should be illegal. Why? Because other things are proximate causes to people’s demise, but obviously shouldn’t be illegal. For example, consider this argument (given in the aftermath of a bad car accident):

"Cars don't kill people; people kill people."

Obviously cars should not be illegal, but notice that this has nothing to do with the fact that they are proximate causes. Of course, they should be regulated; I shouldn't be allowed to go onto the highway in a car with no brakes. But all of that has to do what cars are for (they are not made for killing people), what role they play in society (it couldn't function without them) and so on. It's a complicated issue—one to which pointing out that cars are merely proximate causes to some deaths contributes nothing.

So clearly the argument under consideration, and any other argument that merely points out that guns are proximate causes ("stop blaming the guns and start blaming the person") is fallacious. Since people can't seem to agree on what fallacy such arguments employ, I would like to give a name to the mistake I have identified within them: "the fallacy of mistaking the relevance of proximate causation."

So, should all guns be illegal? After all, like the bazooka, they do make killing people in mass easier to accomplish. Then again, like cars, using them for mass murder is not their intended function. Most people agree that they should at least be regulated (at the least, most think that all gun sales should require a background check). But how strictly should they be regulated? Perhaps very strictly. After all, states with stricter gun regulations have fewer gun related deaths. Then again, there may be philosophical issues related to the protection of liberty that trump such utilitarian concerns. It’s a complicated issue.

And that’s my point: It’s a complicated issue. There are lots of relevant factors involved, but the fact that guns are proximate causes isn't one of them. So the next time someone quotes the NRA slogan, "Guns don't kill people; people kill people," in an attempt to end a discussion about gun control, do me a favor: point out that they have “mistaken the relevance of proximate causation,” pause briefly to enjoy the confused look on their face, and then patiently explain the fallacy to them. (

I am pretty sure that nutcase would not have managed to kill 26 innocent people if he were armed with a baseball bat, although he might have gotten one or two.

We had another killing in Austin over the weekend. Interestingly, the only guy killed was a guy who was a professional guide, and ran a hunting ranch owned by his parents for the last several years. The shooter managed to wound three or four others before he killed the victim, who was trying to talk him down.

Motivation? The shooter was just drunk on his ass, and angry about something. He knew everyone he shot.

I am pretty sure that nutcase would not have managed to kill 26 innocent people if he were armed with a baseball bat, although he might have gotten one or two.

How about if he was armed with a Hummer or a Pipe Bomb?


Moron plus pipe bomb often equals Darwinian selection. In Texas we have pickup trucks bigger than Hummers. Lots of them.

No pedestrian/bike paths to barrel down in rural Texas. To take out a whole church you'd have to making pretty good speed on impact.

You don't HAVE to hit them inside the Church.  You can wait until they come streaming out after services are over.  You also don't HAVE to use a Hummer.  You could use a Freightliner and load the trailer with bricks.  You would flatten a stick built church like that hitting it at 80 or so.  As to Darwinian Selection with Pipe Bombs, I am unaware of any morons recently blowing themselves up this way.  Can you cite an example?

In any event, it's hard to imagine how they could collect up all the gunz distributed around Amerika.  You could ban new gun sales, but there would be a thriving Black Market and gunz would "leak" across the Mexican border.  Then you have your rednecks and Brandon "Lexington & Concord" Smiths who vow "You'll only take my gun over my cold, dead body."  I forsee some nice Waco style standoffs with the FBI & ATF.



If "Darwinian selection" (an EXCLUSIVELY SUBTRACTIVE PROCESS) had beans to do with the increase in violence in our society, we would have less violence, not more, as the more violent among us got killed off (i.e. selected out).

I do not want to get into a long drawn out argument about the violent humans getting around that by makin' babies before they get to the violent stage, thereby increasing their destructive gene pool percentage, rather than reducing it. That's bullshit on many levels, all of them objecctively scientific.

Classifying this increase in violence as an outlier/moronic/not systemic phenomenon is technically accurate but scientifically erroneous, simply because violence has increased in all areas of human society from sexual harrassment to bullying to greed based ruthless exploitation.

In all these areas people don't always get killed right away, but this breeds more anger, frustration and, of course, violence. So, the increase in violence is SYSTEMIC, not an outlier result of "low IQ" humans.

So this is not about intelligence levels, adabtability, evolution or guns, for that matter.

Of course Eddie is right that a baseball bat or some other blunt weapon will slow down the kill rate. RE is right that we have lots of machinery around to jack up the kill rate, so limiting everyone to a murf bat won't solve this problem of people going postal.

( THIS IS ABOUT EVIL! Until we address the CAUSE of this EVIL (i.e. lack of EMPATHY for fellow earthlings) in our society, THINGS WILL GET WORSE, not better.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: GWarnock on November 07, 2017, 01:46:59 pm
Irresponsible government, bought and paid for!!
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on November 07, 2017, 02:37:22 pm
Agreed.  :(
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on November 21, 2017, 09:26:25 pm
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 01, 2017, 04:36:14 pm
The White House is apparently infested with mice, roaches, and ants :)

There is a situation in the Situation Room. White House work order requests obtained by NBC News4 reveal a number of intimate details about the first family's lives in D.C. (Melania Trump requested a large screen TV, the Oval Office bathroom needed a new toilet seat), but if there is one major takeaway about managing a historic building, it's that you can't be squeamish about pests.

To start, there are the mice, which reportedly got cozy in the Situation Room and the Navy mess food hall: "Add more traps, they spotted mice run in the small and big dining rooms," one request read. Another alarming request implored someone to "PLEASE … PICK UP DEAD MOUSE," with the deceased rodent's location apparently being Vice President Mike Pence's West Wing office.

Cockroaches are also a problem at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., with at least four infestations reported in the work order requests. Then there are the ants: "Treat for ants in the West Wing 1st floor COS Office, especially the main entrance and the small office," one order said. Another simply conveyed the urgency with its all-caps "ANTS."

Trump Tower this is not. Read a sampling of the White House work orders via NBC here.]

The White House is apparently infested with mice, roaches, and ants :)

This is not newz.


Yep. Here's a picture of one that Mueller is zeroing in on:    (

Russia? Where is that? Putin who? I was Golfing that day!
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 18, 2017, 08:17:32 pm
A Mysterious Blob of Hot Rock Is Building Up Under America's Northeast

Something is rising from the depths.


A vast mass of hot rock is welling up underneath Vermont and extending into other subterranean regions below New England, new research shows.

Scientists used a network of thousands of seismic measurement devices in the largest geological study of its kind, detecting the enormous blob upwelling under Vermont, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts – and possibly elsewhere.

"The upwelling we detected is like a hot air balloon, and we infer that something is rising up through the deeper part of our planet under New England," says geophysicist Vadim Levin from Rutgers University – New Brunswick.

Since New England doesn't have any active volcanoes, the huge build-up is thought to be a geologically recent phenomenon, although in this case that means it could have slowly but steadily been growing for tens of millions of years.

Hot rock in the mantle rising toward the surface

As for whether the mass could one day erupt, that's the way these things go, the team says – although there's no point in panicking, since such an eventuality is still a long, long way off from happening.

"It will likely take millions of years for the upwelling to get where it's going," Levin explains.

"The next step is to try to understand how exactly it's happening."

The team analysed the blob using Earthscope – a multi-institutional network of instruments monitoring seismic movements rippling throughout the North American continent.

Buried in two years of data, the team zeroed in on New England, having previously identified a thermal anomaly that was hundreds of degrees Celsius hotter than its surroundings in the upper mantle about 200 kilometres (124.2 miles) below the surface, and measuring approximately 400 kilometres (248.5 miles) in diameter.

"It is a very large and relatively stable region," says Levin, "but we found an irregular pattern with rather abrupt changes in it."

Using new readings of seismic waves travelling through Earth's underground, the team suggests the blob is welling directly under central Vermont, but it extends into western New Hampshire and also western Massachusetts.

The researchers acknowledge the mass may travel beyond these states, although they're unable to tell from the data they used in this study. That said, as enormous as this blob is, compared to other volcanic masses churning under the continental US, it's no giant.

"It is not Yellowstone (National Park)-like, but it's a distant relative in the sense that something relatively small – no more than a couple hundred miles across – is happening," explains Levin.

There's still a lot to learn about this mass and its behaviour, but the researchers say their findings challenge what we think we know about geological conditions under this Atlantic margin of North America – and how passive we wrongly assumed it to be.

"[W]e did not expect to find abrupt changes in physical properties beneath this region," says Levin, "and the likely explanation points to a much more dynamic regime underneath this old, geologically quiet area."

As dynamic as it looks to be, this rising blob of hot rock still has a long journey ahead if it wants to one day reach the surface and graduate to being a proper volcano.

Whether that's an actual possibility, nobody really can say for sure just yet.

"Maybe it didn't have time yet, or maybe it is too small and will never make it," Levin told National Geographic.

"Come back in 50 million years, and we'll see what happens."

The findings are reported in Geology.

Under VERMONT? ???

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 27, 2017, 09:09:53 pm
Incident Photos: Panama-Flagged Cargo Ship Wrecks in Greece

December 26, 2017 by Mike Schuler


A Panama-flagged cargo ship wrecked on the Greek island of Traganisi near Mykonos on Friday during a voyage from Russia to Cyprus.

The Hellenic Coast Guard says all 12 foreign nationals on board the MV Little Seyma were able to abandon ship in a life raft and scramble their way to shore. The vessel is carrying 2,700 tons sunflower seed.

Photos show the ship partially sunk along the rocky coastline. A local pollution response team has been activated.



Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 15, 2018, 10:01:37 pm
Research into Anglo-Saxon burials uncover new insights



An archaeologist from the Australian National University (ANU) is set to redefine what we know about elderly people in cultures throughout history, and dispel the myth that most people didn’t live much past 40 prior to modern medicine.

Christine Cave, a PhD candidate in the ANU School of Archaeology and Anthropology, has developed a new method for determining the age-of-death for skeletal remains based on how worn the teeth are.

Using her method, which she developed by analysing the wear on teeth and comparing with living populations of comparable cultures, she examined the skeletal remains of three Anglo-Saxon English cemeteries for people buried between the years 475 and 625 CE.

Her research determined that it was not uncommon for people to live to old age.

“People sometimes think that in those days if you lived to 40 that was about as good as it got. But that’s not true.

“For people living traditional lives without modern medicine or markets the most common age of death is about 70, and that is remarkably similar across all different cultures.”

Cave said the myth has been built up due to deficiencies in the way older people are categorised in archaeological studies.

“Older people have been very much ignored in archaeological studies and part of the reason for that has been the inability to identify them,” she said.

“When you are determining the age of children you use developmental points like tooth eruption or the fusion of bones that all happen at a certain age.

Read more:

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 20, 2018, 03:24:24 pm
WATCH: Fishermen Dive Overboard Before Being Run Over by Speedboat  :o

January 17, 2018 by Mike Schuler

Video at link:

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 29, 2018, 02:19:49 pm
BSC Newsletter Issue #103

Building Science Corporation

BSI-102: The Coming Stucco-Pocalypse

January 29, 2018 1:37 PM

How can you take a system with thousands of years of history and screw it up?  Easy.  Keep improving it until it does not work.  Babylonians used it. Egyptians used it. Greeks used it.  Romans used it (Photograph 1).  Everyone used it…and everyone uses it. But it sure has changed and what we put it over sure has changed.

Photograph 1: (and several other photographs at article link)  Pompeii – Stucco applied over Roman brick.  Minor issue with Mount Vesuvius (  in 79 A.D.

Over several millennia[1] stucco has gone from lime-based to lime-Portland cement-based to Portland cement-based to polymer modified….and each step of the way it has gotten stronger…and less vapor permeable.

This has had huge consequences.  Duh.  When walls get wet they can’t dry.  They used to be able to.  Today?  Not so much.

.….Read the entire article at

[1]  ”kiloyears” Yes, this is a valid term.  Who knew?     (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on February 08, 2018, 12:38:43 pm
NTSB Releases El Faro Investigation Final Report

February 7, 2018 by Mike Schuler



Eric Stolzenberg, Naval Architecture Group Chairman presenting about the Flooding of Cargo Holds during the December 12, 2017 board meeting on the sinking of the S.S. El Faro.

The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board has released its final report on its investigation into the sinking of the American cargo ship SS El Faro on October 1, 2015 in the Atlantic Ocean.

Today’s release of the final report follows the NTSB’s meeting on December 12, 2017, to determine the probable cause of the sinking. On that date, the NTSB also adopted and released 81 findings and 53 safety recommendations from the investigation.

The US-flagged cargo ship SS El Faro was on a regular route from Jacksonville, Florida, to San Juan, Puerto Rico when it foundered and sank about 40 nautical miles northeast of Acklins and Crooked Island, Bahamas after sailing into the path of Hurricane Joaquin. All 33 people on board perished when the ship sank.

The 40-year-old SS El Faro was owned by TOTE Maritime Puerto Rico and operated by TOTE Services, Inc.

The loss of the vessel is the worst U.S. maritime disaster in terms of loss of life in over 30 years.

WATCH: NTSB Video Details El Faro Sinking

Full article:

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity: PART 1 of 3 (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on February 13, 2018, 07:29:11 pm
Do You Have to Travel to Paris to See the Eiffel Tower? (  (

Tianducheng, a suburb of the eastern Chinese city of Hangzhou, was built about 15 years ago at the beginning of that country’s epic real estate boom, when housing prices were rising by more than 13 percent a year. Between 2003 and 2014, developers built 100 billion square feet of residential real estate. There was a buyer for everything, including a development in Tianducheng dubbed “the Paris of the East” -- 164 acres of French-inspired architecture, all centered around a one-third scale replica of the Eiffel Tower.

Paris of the East in China

Pardon their French:  ;D

The Chinese fondness for what has been called “duplitecture” 🌟 didn’t stop there. There are copycat cities for every travel fantasy, including London, Venice, and, more surprisingly, Jackson Hole, Wyoming  :o.

Now that the real estate frenzy has passed, Tianducheng and some of China's other faux cities are becoming ghost towns. "I live here because it's cheap,” said one of the suburb’s few residents.

Many apartments in Tianducheng are empty, and few stores are open for business. The "duplitecture" cities are often used as a destination for engagement and wedding photos, though.

The art of copying: How China claimed the world's greatest architectural hits ✨
Updated 12:14 PM ET, Mon June 16, 2014 (

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on February 20, 2018, 07:43:39 pm
VIDEO: Here’s How SMIT Salvage Removed the Grounded TS Taipei in Taiwan

February 19, 2018 by gCaptain

Article with the above video:
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on February 22, 2018, 02:15:16 pm
Caught on Video: Explosion 💥  :o Rocks Ferry Docked in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico

February 21, 2018 by gCaptain

Article with above video;
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on March 05, 2018, 07:41:55 pm
Coast Guard: Containership Loses About 70 Containers Overboard Off U.S. East Coast

March 4, 2018 by Mike Schuler

MV Maersk Shanghai. Photo: Kocoj

A 10,000 TEU containership lost about 70 containers overboard on Saturday night while about 17 miles off Oregon Inlet, North Carolina.

The U.S. Coast Guard is warning mariners of navigation hazards.

The 324-meter Maersk Shanghai contacted USCG watchstanders at Sector North Carolina’s command center via VHF-FM marine radio channel 16 on Saturday evening notifying them that they lost approximately 70 to 73 cargo containers due to high winds and heavy seas.

The ship departed from Norfolk, Virginia on Saturday bound for Charleston, South Carolina, where it was due to arrive Sunday, according to ship-tracking data.

UPDATE: Maersk Line Addresses Loss of Containers from Ship Off U.S. East Coast

The incident comes as a powerful nor’easter slammed the East Coast over the weekend, producing hurricane-force winds and significant wave heights up in excess of 40 feet in the western Atlantic.

Here is a wave analysis from Saturday night:  :o


The Coast Guard urges all mariners to transit this area with caution.

The MV Maersk Shanghai was built in 2016 and has a nominal capacity of 10,081 TEU. It is currently sailing on Maersk Line’s TP11 service.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on March 15, 2018, 08:12:29 pm

Ships in Caribbean Told to Avoid Underwater Volcano ‘Kick ’em Jenny’   (
 Due to Eruption Risk

March 14, 2018 by gCaptain

Sonar image shows the submarine volcano Kick-’em-Jenny off the coast of Grenada. Image capture 1996.

Officials in the Caribbean island of Grenada are warning ships to steer clear of an underwater volcano due to increased seismic activity that could indicate the start of an eruption at any moment.

On Tuesday, the Government of Grenada announced that the alert level for the submarine volcano Kick “em Jenny, located 8 km (5 mi) north of the island of Grenada, has been raised to ORANGE, meaning an eruption could take place within 24 hours.

With the increase in the alert level, ships and other marine operators are asked to observe the exclusion zone of 5 km (3.1 miles) around the summit of the volcano.

Alerts are issued by Grenada’s National Disaster Management Agency with technical support from University of the West Indies Seismic Research Center in Port-of –Spain, Trinidad, which is constantly monitoring the volcano.

Kick ’em Jenny, one of the most active volcanoes in the Eastern Caribbean, is about 1300m high, and its summit is currently estimated to be about ~200m below the surface of the Caribbean Sea.

Scientists, however, believe that an eruption is unlikely to produce tsunami due to the volcano’s location and pattern of activity.

Rather, Kick ’em Jenny is considered most dangerous for ships and boats since it is constantly releasing gases that can lower the density of the water, causing vessels to sink even if when not erupting. For this reason, the alert level is kept at a constant YELLOW, with a permanent 1.5km exclusion zone around the summit of the volcano.


Kick ’em Jenny has erupted 14 times since it was first discovered in 1936, with the most recent eruption occurring in April 2017.

Agelbert NOTE: To understand the risk of being near a volcano that erupts, check out this video from 2014. The shock wave blast is quite impressive.  :o

Cargo Ships Have Front Row Seat for Spectacular Volcano Eruption – Video

September 6, 2014 by Mike Schuler
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on March 15, 2018, 08:40:13 pm
:o :o :o :o :o  Impressive indeed.

Mother nature sure can let us know who is boss now and then.

Sure glad I wasn't sitting on a deck chair on a cruise ship near that spectacle.

What power and energy, makes you think of how helpless we really are in the grand scheme of things.  :o

Indeed! I jumped in my chair when I heard the blast wave! 🌋 😨 I replayed the video a few times and was wowed some more by the clouds rushing away with the blast wave (upper part of the screen). Far out!
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on March 15, 2018, 08:41:19 pm
Looks like a good source of renewable geothermal energy.   (


Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on March 24, 2018, 10:10:00 pm

The world’s largest cruise ship was delivered to Royal Caribbean International on Friday by STX France at their Saint-Nazaire, France.

By gCaptain on Mar 23, 2018 03:17 pm

Symphony of the Seas 🐷, Royal Caribbean’s fourth Oasis-class vessel, is 228,081 gross registered tons and measures 362 meters long by 66 meters wide and 70 meters high.

The vessel has capacity for 6,800 passengers and 2,000 crew in 2,759 staterooms.   :P

By gross tonnage, the Symphony of the Seas takes the title as the largest cruise ship in the world’, surpassing the 226,900 gt Harmony of the Seas, Royal Caribbean’s third Oasis ship which was also built at STX France. (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on April 04, 2018, 10:32:53 pm
Denmark’s Largest Space Project, The ASIM Climate Observatory ✨, Has Arrived At The International Space Station  (

April 4th, 2018 by Jesper Berggreen

The site Ingeniøren reports on the success of getting one of the most anticipated Danish space projects in years off the ground.

The climate observatory ASIM (Atmosphere-Space Interactions Monitor) is finally on its way to the International Space Station, ISS, after a year’s delay. The SpaceX Falcon 9 CRS-14 mission made sure to bring the Dragon spacecraft with ASIM into orbit Monday, and while slowly achieving a higher altitude, the spacecraft finally docked with ISS Wednesday. The process of securing ASIM onto the outside of ISS is expected to be completed in about 10 days.

For the SpaceX crew at Cape Canaveral control center in Florida, this launch was mostly routine, as it is the 14th SpaceX mission to ISS. However, for a delegation of almost 100 European researchers and engineers, including families, from DTU Space and high-tech company Terma, this was anything but routine.

ASIM is mounted at the bottom of the Dragon-space capsule. Image credit: Terma via Ingeniøren

The mission is the culmination of almost 12 years of work, and on board the Dragon capsule is the 330 kg climate observatory ASIM — 1 cubic meter of state-of-the-art high-tech space instrumentation. It was a great relief for the people involved to witness the successful launch.

ASIM has cost 370 million DKK (61 million USD), of which 220 million DKK (36 million USD) are from Danish sources, which makes ASIM the largest Danish space project to date. The ASIM mission is realized through the European Space Agency, ESA. Other major partners include the University of Valencia in Spain, and the University of Bergen in Norway.

Chief consultant at DTU Space and head of the scientific team behind ASIM Torsten Neubert to Ingeniøren:

“This is really exciting, because it is always risky to send something up with a rocket. We hope and expect it to go well, but it’s not something we can take for granted … we have struggled for years to make it all work … Now it’s reality.”

For the next two years, ASIM will study giant lightning 🌩 that stretches vertically through the atmospheric layers , and examine how they might affect the climate on earth, including global warming. It is believed that giant lightning can act as corridors that displace the chemical composition of the atmosphere and the ozone layer, and thus they must be taken into account in climate models.

ASIM is fitted with two cameras, three light sensors that detect light glow in different wavelengths, and an X-ray detector. Although the primary target is lightning above thunderstorms, ASIM will also observe meteors, water vapor, cloud formations, and more.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on April 09, 2018, 07:33:41 pm

Incident Video: Bulk Carrier Crashes 😲 Into Historic Mansion in Bosphorus Strait

April 7, 2018 by gCaptain

The damaged Hekimbasi Salih Efendi Mansion is seen after the Maltese flagged tanker Vitaspirit crashed into it by the Bosphorus strait in Istanbul, Turkey April 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yoruk Isik

A Maltese-flagged bulk carrier crashed into a historic mansion on the shores of Istanbul’s Bosphorus Strait on Saturday after its steering gear failed, according to media reports.

Ship traffic in the strait had been suspended in both directions.

Video from other boats in the area showed the ship, identified as the Vitaspirit, crash into the waterfront mansion. The vessel was later pulled back from the crash site.

Ship traffic in the strait had been suspended in both directions.

There were no immediate reports of injuries, but photos and video showed extensive damage to the historic seaside mansion located under the Fatih Sultan Mehmet bridge.

The Hekimbasi Salih Efendi Mansion has stood on the shores of the Bosphorus Strait since the 18th century and is used to host weddings and concerts, according to the mansion’s website.

A Turkish maritime police boat escorts the Maltese flagged tanker Vitaspirit after it crashed into a historic mansion in the Bosphorus strait in Istanbul, Turkey April 7, 2018. REUTERS/Yoruk Isik

Video from inside the mansion at the time of the accident at article link:

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 03, 2018, 02:01:16 pm

Screengrab of video taken aboard the F/V Temptation shows the moment before the crash.

Alaskan Fishing Wars – Incident Video Shows Violent Collision  :o  Between Competing Fishing Boats

By Mike Schuler on May 02, 2018 05:40 pm

he skipper of an Alaskan salmon seiner is facing felony charges after she allegedly rammed a competitor’s boat in a battle over a school of fish up in Prince William Sound.

The incident took place in August 2016 and left one person seriously injured.

A view of the collision was captured on video by a stern-facing camera mounted on the boat that took the hit, named Temptation.

In the video, the Temptation appears to be vying for position when it was hit by two boats nearly simultaneously, one on the starboard side towards the stern and the port side amidships. One crew member on the deck of the Temptation suffered a head injury when he was hit by falling deck equipment.

After the collision, both sides can be heard arguing   ( with other over who was at fault. Check it out:

The skipper facing the charges is Alaskan-native and former pro skier, Kami Cabana, who was commanding the 58-foot F/V Chugach Pearl, which is the vessel that can be seen colliding with the Temptation from the port side. Making matters even more interesting, Kami is also a member of the Cabana family, a well-known and very successful salmon fishing family up in Alaska.

For good reason, the incident has gained quite a bit of attention among Alaska’s fishing communities.

In addition to felony charges, Cabana also faced a civil lawsuit which was reportedly settled out of court.

Her criminal case has received several continuances, but now it seems like Cabana may get off with merely a slap on the wrist. After a pre-trial hearing last week, Alicia Long, the wife of the Temptation’s skipper, Jason Long, posted this on her Facebook page:

“Just listened in on Kami Cabana’s pre-trial conference. They expected to have a deal with 120 hours of community service and a 2 hour coast guard course. Another continuance until June 12th. If you have a problem with this. Or the deal they tried to make with the state call Judge Schally in Valdez and Aaron Peterson in Anchorage at the DA office. June will find the Cabanas fishing, is the fleet ok with her getting off so easy?? F u c k i n g bullshit. Ram away guys, hurt whomever you want, there will be no penalty in the eyes of the State.”

It should be noted that Long, who was the skipper of the Temptation at the time, was fined $1,300 after the U.S. Coast Guard found that he failed to avoid crossing in front of the other vessels prior to the collision. The Cordova Times has more on that part of the story:

The Coast Guard found that on Aug. 16, 2016 that Long observed a school of salmon in Hidden Bay and when an opening of about 150 feet occurred between the F/V Chugach Pearl and another vessel, the F/V Silver Steak, he maneuvered the F/V Temptation to pass between the two vessels before the gap closed. The other two vessels were standing still at the time, with the F/V Chugach Pearl off to the port side and the F/V Silver Streak to the starboard side of the F/V Temptation.

According to video introduced into evidence, the F/V Temptation dramatically increased its speed about 12 seconds before the collision with the F/V Chugach Pearl and the F/V Silver Streak, the Coast Guard hearing officer noted.

The fact that the F/V Silver Streak and F/V Chugach Pearl both inappropriately ‘throttled up in a pinching maneuver’ in an effort to block the F/V Temptation from getting into the bay was not disputed and captains of both of those vessels were found culpable in the collision, but those actions did not absolve Long in his responsibility to follow navigation rules that may have prevented the collision, the hearing officer said.

In fact, at no time during the 12 seconds before the collision did the F/V Temptation further increase or decrease its speed to avoid a potential collision, the Coast Guard said. Read more… (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 11, 2018, 05:34:46 pm
Agelbert NOTE: Gcaptain is doing the right thing. (


US Company  ( Claims Ownership Of Plimsoll Mark (

May 10, 2018 by gCaptain

Plimsoll International Load Line mark on a ship. Photo by J. Quendag, Shutterstock

In 2017 alone, over ten billion tons of cargo was carried by the world’s fleet of over 50,000 registered ships. Each of those ships is unique – they fly the flag of over 100 different countries, hail from over a 1,000 and employee crew from every nation on earth. No two ships are identical except that, painted at the waterline of each of these ships, is the same simple mark, the International Load Line. Today gCaptain received notice from an American company to Cease and Desist use of this mark.

The International Load Line is more commonly called a Plimsoll Mark in deference to Samuel Plimsoll, a British MP who took up the load line cause in the 1860s. Plimsoll lobbied for a Royal Commission on the seaworthiness ships in 1872, and in 1876 the United Kingdom Merchant Shipping Act made the load line mark compulsory on all British commercial vessels. In 1906, laws were passed requiring foreign ships visiting British ports to be marked with a load line and in 1930 the Load Line Convention mandated its use internationally.

Since 1872 the Plimsoll Mark has become so ubiquitous that this simple mark has inspired books, movie studios, and even popular athletic shoes. It is featured on numerous memorials to lost sailors and is etched in stone to mark Samuel Plimsoll’s grave.

In 2009, despite over a century of use by countless parties, the United States Patent and Trademark Office issued a trademark for the exclusive use of this mark on items ranging from “magnets, namely, decorative magnets and refrigerator magnets” to “plastic license plates”, to William C. Leewenburg, a Marine Cargo Surveyor in Morehead City, North Carolina.

In a cease and desist letter sent to gCaptain this morning E. Eric Mills, an attorney representing Leewenburg’s company states that Mr. Leewenburg’s company “offers an assortment of products under trademark registrations worldwide, including the United States, Europe, Canada, and Australia” and asks that we remove the mark from the shirt, mug and poster gCaptain created to honor the work of Samuel Plimsoll.

While Mills concedes that the version of the Plimsoll mark used by gCaptain is “not identical to the one shown in his client’s registration” he believes it is “similar enough that a purchaser could confuse one version for the other” and “is in violation of his client’s rights under federal and state trademark and unfair competition laws.”

Can a mark as historic and important as the Plimsoll Mark be trademarked? ( Was a mistake made by the US Patent and Trademark Office? Will shipping companies be asked to pay a fee or remove the mark from the sides of their ships?


gCaptain has contacted a few shipping companies and has found out that Mr. Leewenburg has not yet asked them to remove the mark from the sides of their ships. ;D

Note from gCaptain CEO John Konrad: gCaptain does not believe we have violated any law or trademark by offering our Samuel Plimsoll products. ( We shall consider removing the products if they do in fact break the law but we also firmly believe that mariners should be able to buy and wear with pride a mark that signifies safety and professionalism in our industry. In the spirit of this belief gCaptain will be donating $10 for each plimsoll shirt we sell to a charity organization for seafarers. (

Any mariner who would prefer to purchase these items at cost rather than donate may use coupon code “plimsoll” at checkout for 25% off.   -JK
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 21, 2018, 02:45:28 pm

Car Carrier Catches Fire 🔥 at Port of Incheon, South Korea -Incident Video

May 21, 2018 by gCaptain

A screengrab from Yonhap News video (below) showing the fire on board the Panama-registered Auto Banner at the Port of Incheon, May 21, 2018. Credit: Yonhap News

A Panama-flagged car carrier caught fire Monday while docked at the Port of Incheon in South Korea.

Officials said the fire broke out at about 9:40 a.m. local time in the cargo area of the vehicle carrier, which was loaded with about 2,000 vehicles bound for Libya at the time.

The identity of the ship has been confirmed the 52,000-ton, 200-meter-long Auto Banner.

The fire is believed to have started when the engine of one of the vehicles overheated, sparking a fire which spread to other vessels.

All 28 crew members evacuated the ship without injury.

Officials said the ship arrived in Incheon from the United States on Saturday and was scheduled to depart for Libya on Tuesday.

Video from Yonhap News shows firefighters attempting to the cool the hull of the vessel as smoke pours out the top. Visible damage can be seen on the side of the ship.

The Port of Incheon is South Korea’s second busiest port and in 2016 it handled more than 20% of the countries used-vehicle exports.

The Hyundai Glovis-operated Auto Banner was built in 1988 and has capacity for about 6,022 AEU (Automobile Equivalent Units).

Here is the video below: (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 21, 2018, 02:53:40 pm

This Might Be The Best Maritime Commercial Ever [VIDEO]

May 21, 2018 by John Konrad

This VLinc video, produced by gCaptain’s own Mario Vittone, might be the best maritime commercial ever but it’s certainly the most true.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on June 06, 2018, 06:28:08 pm

Australia to Investigate Loss of 83 Containers from Ship in Heavy 🌊 Weather

June 5, 2018 by Mike Schuler

The container ship YM Efficiency arrives at Port Botany in Sydney, Australia, June 6, 2018. AAP/David Moir/via REUTERS 😲

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) will investigate the loss of dozens of shipping containers overboard from the Yang Ming-operated cargo ship YM Efficiency off of New South Wales, Australia last Friday.

The Liberian-flagged YM Efficiency was sailing from Taiwan to Port Botany with 2,252 loaded containers when it encountered rough weather off Port Stephens, News South Wales shortly after midnight on June 1, 2018.

🌊 The large swells caused the ship to roll and pitch heavily, leading to the loss of 83 containers overboard and another 30 containers moved or damaged on board, the ATSB said.

Video: 83 Containers Lost from Cargo Ship

Debris from the ship has washed up along the shores of New South Wales. As of Tuesday, about 100 contract workers had joined the shore clean-up effort. Officials have also been issuing regular warnings to ensure ships and boaters are aware of the potential hazard from floating debris.

“Continuing bad weather is hampering efforts, but [on Wednesday] the forecast is for the weather and visibility to improve slightly, so divers will be deployed to join the efforts to assess rubbish that may be sitting on the seabed in the vicinity of Jimmys and Hawks Nest,” said Roads and Maritime Services Executive Director of Maritime, Angus Mitchell.

The ATSB said that during its investigation it will obtain information and recordings from the ship, company and pilots, and will interview directly involved parties as appropriate.

A report will be released at the end of the investigation.

As of Tuesday afternoon the YM Efficiency remained at anchor off coast of Sydney as it awaited entry into port.

Yang Ming says there have been no reports of damage to the vessel or marine pollution other than the lost containers.

“Till this moment, everything is under master’s control, and vessel ‘s safety navigation has been well secured,” Yang Ming said in a statement. “She has already arrived out off Sydney port, however, due port closure under adverse weather, she is unable to be berthed now. YM is trying utmost to secure a berth for her a.s.a.p.”
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on June 26, 2018, 08:29:56 pm

General Cargo Ship ‘Thorco Lineage’ Hard Aground in French Polynesia  :P

June 25, 2018 by gCaptain

The 131-meter general cargo ship Thorco Lineage is hard aground on an atoll in French Polynesia after drifting aground during a voyage across the South Pacific on Saturday.

The Philippines-flagged ship was underway from Baltimore, Maryland in the United States to Hobart, Australia when it experienced engine trouble and drifted aground on the northern end of Raroia Atoll, part of the Tuamotus chain.

No pollution has been reported so far, however, reports indicate the vessel is unlikely to float free without salvage assistance.

Reports also say so far a salvor has not yet been appointed.

The M/V Thorco Lineage is operated by Thorco Projects. The ship was built in 2014 and has a deadweight of 16,949 tonnes.

The ship has a crew of 18 people.

A spokesperson for Thorco Projects provided gCaptain with the following statement:

“We can confirm that Thorco Lineage has drifted aground on the northern outline of Raroia Atoll, French Polynesia, as she was experiencing engine problems. We are in close dialogue with the vessel’s owners and technical managers. Investigations are still ongoing.”
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on June 28, 2018, 09:53:52 pm

Incident Video: Oh Sch**sse! German Warship’s Missile Misfire 💥

June 28, 2018 by Mike Schuler

Check out this video that has emerged showing an SM-2 missile misfire aboard a Germany warship.

The test fire took place June 21 aboard the German Navy vessel Sachsen (F219).

Luckily, only two crew members sustained minor injuries. The deck of the Sachsen, however, was pretty scorched by the blast.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on June 29, 2018, 04:17:48 pm
Prank Caller Patched Through To Trump ( For 3-Minute Conversation On Air Force One

by Tyler Durden

Fri, 06/29/2018 - 15:25

President Trump was prank called yesterday at 30,000 feet on Air Force One after "Stuttering John" Melendez pretended to be New Jersey Democratic Senator Bob Menendez.

Trump starts off the conversation by congratulating "Menendez" on his primary win against Lisa McCormick, telling him he "went through a very tough situation."

The two then discussed immigration - with Trump "Bob, let me just tell you I want to be able to take care of the situation every bit as much as anybody else at the top level. I'd rather do the larger solution rather than the smaller solution."

On the topic of a Supreme Court pick, "Menendez" tried to bait Trump into exchanging political favors for a less conservative pick:

"Bob Menendez": "I promise you, you will have my vote. I will help you if you if you don't go too conservative, you know what I'm saying?"

Trump: Ah... well, we will talk to you about it. We're gonna probably make a decision Bob over the next two weeks. We have some great choices. (

Melendez said on his podcast "This is how easy it is to infiltrate the administration."

Meanwhile, the White House ( is scrambling to figure out how Melendez was so easily transferred from the White House switchboard to Air Force on, reports Axios.

Trump of course isn't the first politician to be trolled in recent memory. Both John McCain and Maxine Waters fell victim to Russian pranksters Vladimir Krasnov and Aleksey Stolyarov, known online as Vovan and Lexus, in 2017. McCain took a call from who he thought was the Ukrainian Prime Minister, while Waters was tricked into talking about Russian hacking and other Kremlin concerns. (

And while there's no way to prove that the recordings are actually them, neither have denied their authenticity.  ;D (

Agelbert NOTE: My wife told me this afternoon that Trump looked unusually disheveled on TV. Now I know why. ( (

Also, I posted this on Surly's channel to provide him a nice chuckle.   (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on June 29, 2018, 05:22:19 pm
Prank Caller Patched Through To Trump ( For 3-Minute Conversation On Air Force One

Agelbert NOTE: My wife told me this afternoon that Trump looked unusually disheveled on TV. Now I know why. ( (

Also, I posted this on Surly's channel to provide him a nice chuckle. (   

Glad you did! Thanks!

I figured you would enjoy it as much as I did. ;D In these dark times, we need to keep our spirits up with any humor available. Here's a picture of me going about my daily business of gathering material for posting. (

fAll fhe fnews fthat fift to fprint.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on July 18, 2018, 05:30:57 pm


Twelve new moons discovered around Jupiter, pointing to a violent past

July 18, 2018  BY ALEXANDRU MICU 


New research shows that the planet Jupiter is also quite happy to collect consorts. Twelve new moons have been discovered orbiting it, bringing the gas giant’s total collection to an impressive 79 moons  :o — more than any other planet in the Solar System. One of these moons, according to the researchers who made the discovery, is an “oddball” that might help explain how the ochre giant got all of its moons. In a twist of mythological foreshadowing, it likely wasn’t a peaceful process.

Read more:  (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on July 27, 2018, 08:07:56 pm

Watch This Boat Get Tossed by a Huge 🌊 Wave  :o

July 25, 2018 by Mike Schuler

This video was apparently filmed this week in Nias in Sumatra, Indonedia as a huge swell hit the island. Luckily, according to reports the vessel was unmanned when it broke free and drifted into the break, drawing a crowd that was just waiting for this to happen.

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity: PART 1 of 3 (

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on July 27, 2018, 08:32:29 pm

🌬🌊 Quick, Heavy Rolling Led to Loss of Containers from YM Efficiency Off Australia, ATSB Finds

July 25, 2018 by Mike Schuler

Collapsed containers are seen on the deck of the YM Efficiency upon its arrival at the Port of Botany on June 6, 2018. Photo: ATSB

A short period of quick, heavy rolling in gale-force winds result in the loss 81 containers overboard from the Liberian-flagged containership YM Efficiency off the coast of Newcastle, New South Wales back in June, the Australian Transport Safety Bureau said in a preliminary report into the incident.

The rolling was estimated by the ship’s master as having reached angles of up to 30º to port and starboard.

In addition to the 81 containers lost, the rolling also resulted in damage to a further 62 containers and structural damage to the ship’s gangway, superstructure and lashing bridges, according to the ATSB.

The incident occurred just on June 1, 2018, as the Yang Ming-operated containership was sailing between Kaohsiung, Taiwan to Port Botany, NSW, Australia as part of its regular service.

According to the ATSB report, the YM Efficiency was located about 16 NM east-south-east of Newcastle when it experienced a period of quick, heavy rolling for about 60 to 90 seconds at 0034 on 1 June 2018.

The day before the incident, the ship’s main engine was stopped amid the rough weather, leaving the ship drifting. However, the ship’s main engine was re-started for brief periods over the next few hours to maintain some control over the ship’s drift, the ATSB said.


“At about 2330, the ship’s main engine was started with the engine speed set to 35 rpm and the ship’s head was slowly brought around to the south-west to resume the passage to Port Botany,” the ATSB’s preliminary report stated. “At midnight, the third officer handed over the navigation watch to the second officer. By this time, the ship was on a heading of about 210° with a speed of about 4.3 knots. The weather at midnight was recorded as being overcast with west-south-westerly winds at force nine (between 41 and 47 knots) with 6 m seas and 5 m swells.”

The heavy rolling caused the ships main engine to shut down once again and, by about 0036, the rolling had reduced and the ship’s motion had calmed.

“Shortly after the start of the rolling, several engineering alarms sounded and the main engine shut down with the rpm reducing to zero. The second officer reported hearing loud noises on deck and suspected that there had been some cargo damage. He turned on the ship’s deck lights and observed that containers had been damaged and possibly lost overboard from the bays aft of the accommodation,” the ATSB report stated.

YM Efficiency eventually berthed in Port Botany at about 0936 on 6 June.

The ATSB’s investigation into the incident is ongoing and a full report will be released at a later time. The ATSB’s preliminary report included no analysis or findings as a result of the investigation.

The ATSB’s preliminary report can be found here. (

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity: PART TWO (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on August 10, 2018, 11:42:55 pm

NTSB Releases Preliminary Report on Fatal Duck Boat Sinking on Table Rock Lake

August 7, 2018 by gCaptain

DUKW Stretch Boat 7. Credit: NTSB

The National Transportation Safety Board on Tuesday released its preliminary investigation into the sinking of the Stretch Duck 7 on July 19, 2018 in Table Rock Lake near Branson, Missouri with the loss of seventeen lives. The preliminary report comes shortly after the release of the NTSB’s initial review of video recordings recovered from the boat, revealing a preliminary timeline of events leading up to the sinking.

Last week, the U.S. Coast Guard announced that it was convening a Marine Accident Board to investigate the accident. The NTSB, however, will lead the marine casualty investigation effort with the Coast Guard joining as an equal partner, in accordance with Joint Federal Regulations. Additional agencies participating in the NTSB’s investigation are the Missouri State Police Highway Patrol, Ride the Ducks, Branson and the National Weather Service.

The NTSB’s Preliminary Report (DCA18MM028) is posted in full below. As a note, the information in this preliminary report is subject to change and may contain errors. It will be supplemented or corrected during the course of the investigation.

NTSB Preliminary Report:  On Thursday, July 19, 2018, about 7:05 p.m. central daylight time, the amphibious passenger vessel Stretch Duck 7 owned and operated by Ride the Ducks Branson sank in Table Rock Lake, near Branson, Missouri. Local area forecasts for the time of the accident included thunderstorm warnings and data indicated winds of over 70 mph were encountered by a nearby vessel. The Stretch Duck 7 was carrying 31 persons: 29 passengers and two crewmembers. The vessel sank in approximately 15 feet of water and came to rest on the lake floor at a depth of 70 feet. Seventeen persons died, including one crewmember.

Local first responders located the victims and transported the survivors to local hospitals. Table Rock Lake is a navigable waterway and the Stretch Duck 7 was a Coast Guard-inspected passenger vessel. The United States Coast Guard declared the accident a major marine casualty, and the NTSB is the lead federal investigative agency.

On Friday, July 20, the day after the accident, the NTSB launched a full team to Branson. The Coast Guard, the Missouri State Highway Patrol, the National Weather Service, and Ride the Ducks Branson were named as parties to the investigation. The Stretch Duck 7 was salvaged on Monday, July 23 and transported to a secure facility. Investigators inspected and tested operational systems aboard the vessel.

The Stretch Duck 7 was equipped with a video recording system, which was recovered from the sunken vessel by the highway patrol dive team and sent to the NTSB laboratory. Investigators are attempting to access data on the system’s hard drive. A data (SIM) card for the video recording system was also recovered. The card’s video files were accessed by engineers at the NTSB laboratory and viewed by the investigative team. Other electronic devices such as cell phones and a camera were recovered and shipped to NTSB labs. Weather data from the accident was collected, including wind speeds (anemometer readings) from nearby weather stations. Thirty- three interviews of witnesses, vessel operators, inspectors, and company officials were conducted on scene. The investigative work and interviews will continue, and the NTSB will participate in the upcoming Coast Guard Marine Board of Investigation.

The Stretch Duck 7 was an amphibious vehicle that took passengers on tourist excursions through Branson on land as well as in the waters of Table Rock Lake. These amphibious vehicles are either military-modified, known as DUKW boats, or purpose-built, commonly referred to as DUCK boats. Both types are operated by different companies around the United States and the world. The NTSB has investigated other amphibious vessel accidents, including the 1999 sinking of the DUKW boat Miss Majestic near Hot Springs, Arkansas; the 2010 collision between a DUKW boat and a tug and barge in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and the 2015 road collision between a DUKW boat and a motor coach in Seattle, Washington.

After the 1999 sinking of the Miss Majestic, the NTSB identified vehicle maintenance, Coast Guard inspections, reserve buoyancy, and survivability as safety issues, and issued Safety Recommendations to the Coast Guard, states, manufacturers, operators, and service providers.

NTSB’s Preliminary Report Page: DCA18MM028
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on August 29, 2018, 10:47:33 am

Watch: Incredible Whale Watching 👀 🧐 Close Call in Alaska

August 24, 2018 by Mike Schuler

You would have to be hiding under a rock to miss this video this week 😀. But if somehow didn’t catch it, here it is.

The video was filmed during a whale watching excursion in Gustavus, Alaska. The guests sure got what they paid for. I’m glad they come away just a little wet and with a great story to tell.  (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on September 27, 2018, 12:15:03 pm
Agelbert NOTE: If you happen to believe the LIES, deliberately and repeatedly told by the U.S. mainstream media (and bigoted people on social media), about those "lazy" Latinos/Mexicans, here's some factual data which flips on its head all the DEMONIZATION PROPAGANDA TARGETED at HISPANIC PEOPLE IN GENERAL, AND HISPANIC WORKERS IN PARTICULAR, routinely spewed by Fox News (and most other U.S. media outlets), in true Orwellian mindfork, in the USA.

Mexican Flag

In Which Country Do People Work the Longest Hours? ???

Mexico might have a reputation for sunny beaches and siestas, but don't let that fool you: When it comes to work, Mexicans are all business. According to statistics from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the average Mexican employee works more than 2,255 hours per year, or a little over 43 hours per week, which is the most of any OECD nation. (

Not far behind is Costa Rica, where workers put in an average of 42.5 hours per week.

On the other end of the scale is Germany, where the average worker toils for only 26 hours per week. By comparison, British workers put in an average of 32.2 hours per week, and Americans clock in at 34.3 hours per week, on average.

All work and some play:

֍ Walmart is the largest private employer in the world, with approximately 2.3 million workers.

֍ Google offers its employees Olympic-size swimming pools, napping beds, miniature golf courses, and free gourmet meals, among other perks.

֍ Workers in Rio de Janeiro have the worst commute time in the world, at an average of more than 90 minutes a day -- or 51 hours per year.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 05, 2018, 01:03:15 pm

October 4, 2018 by Reuters

Engineer Recounts How Indonesian Tsunami Beached His 500-Tonne Ship

The KM Sabuk Nusantara 39 ship seen stranded on the shore in Wani, Donggala, Central Sulawesi, Indonesia October 1, 2018 in this photo taken by Antara Foto. Antara Foto/Muhammad Adimaja/ via REUTERS


Marlan and his fellow crewmen knew they were in trouble when they felt the ship being pulled back out to sea from the dock, as the sea receded, heralding the arrival of a tsunami.

They had no sooner scrambled into life jackets when a five-meter wave bore down on them.

“I could hear the waves coming,” Marlan said, describing how he was gripped by fear. (

Full article with another picture: (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 05, 2018, 01:37:26 pm
October 5, 2018

Last month, The Ear Spring geyser in Yellowstone National Park erupted, causing the biggest blow in over 60 years … but what came out of the geyser, apart from steam and hot water, is shocking. On September 15, 2018, the small geyser, which up until then had been dormant for decades, essentially rained garbage. Ear Spring emptied itself of all the trash that had been thrown into it throughout the period of its dormancy (about 90 years?!) by senseless tourists visiting Yellowstone – some of the pieces of litter collected date back as far as to the 1930s, TreeHugger reports.

Read more: 🕵️

Wow! Yellowstone Geyser Erupted and Sent 90 YEARS Worth of Trash Flying Because People Are the Worst (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 15, 2018, 07:10:23 pm

October 15, 2018

Here, for your viewing pleasure, are various scans I made of beautiful autumn leaves 🍁 🍂 🍃 that fell in my yard. Feel free to copy them and pass them on. 💐 I made them and I will NOT copyright them. ( I approve any free dissemination of these scans. May God Bless you and may you ENJOY the season! (

(   (


(  (

( (








Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 16, 2018, 12:37:49 pm



Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 20, 2018, 05:20:56 pm

October 20, 2018

The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge,file photo. [Photo/Xinhua](

GUANGZHOU - The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge is to be officially open to traffic at 9 am on Oct 24, said the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge Authority.

The 55-kilometer-long bridge :o 👀, situated in the Lingdingyang waters of the Pearl River Estuary, will be the world's longest sea bridge. The construction began on Dec 15, 2009.

It will slash the travel time between Hong Kong and Zhuhai from three hours to just 30 minutes, further integrating the cities in the Pearl River Delta.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 24, 2018, 08:29:13 pm
How Frequently Do Fatal Medical Mistakes Occur?(

Researchers at Johns Hopkins University have highlighted a major cause of death in the United States that doesn’t show up on death certificates. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) doesn’t include this cause of death in its annual list of how people die in this country. Shockingly, the researchers who conducted the 2016 study found that fatal medical errors are so prevalent that they should rank as the third-leading cause of death in the United States 👀😲, behind only heart disease and cancer. The Johns Hopkins physicians are advocating for updated criteria for classifying deaths on death certificates, and a change in how the CDC compiles its statistics.

What you don't know can kill you:

While analyzing death rate data collected between 2000 and 2008, the researchers calculated that more than 250,000 deaths per year are due to medical error -- equal to 9.5 percent of all U.S. deaths.

The CDC's annual mortality statistics count only the "underlying cause of death," defined as the condition that led the person to seek treatment.

Potentially fatal medical mistakes range from surgical complications that go unrecognized to mix-ups with the doses or types of medications that patients receive in hospitals.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on October 29, 2018, 10:28:53 pm

It Never Ends: A Month of Towing in the Bering Sea

October 28, 2018 by CW4 MICHAEL W. CARR

File Photo: Shutterstock/E.G.Pors

By Michael Carr – He could not take it anymore. It was all too much. The constant gale force winds, the paranoid Master, the degenerate 2ndmate, the dysfunctional cook, and an engineer who hid from everyone. All were destroying his mental health.

A week ago, or maybe longer, he could not remember now, he had e-mailed his wife from the tug’s bridge computer and asked her to call the company office in Seattle.

“Ask for Janice and get me off of here…as soon as can. Please,” he wrote. He felt guilty asking his wife to intervene, but he also felt his inner strength and resolve rapidly draining away. He just did not have the fortitude to engage the home office.

Also, he thought, he did not want the tug’s skipper and crew to know he was begging to get off. He was worn out, mentally and physically. He had endured hardship before, but this was different. This time it was insidious, persistent and had relentlessly torn him down since he had embarked on the boat a month earlier in Nome, Alaska.

Prudhoe Bay* was a 147-ton, 90-foot tug built originally for work in Prudhoe Bay Alaska. But now she was hauling barges loaded with containers from King Cove in the Aleutian Islands, up the Yukon River, and to Nome. Built for “coastwise” trade, with a flat bottom and 10 ft. draft, the Prudhoe Bay was now being used to drag barges across the open expanse of the Bering Sea.

From King Cove to Nome is 800 miles of open and exposed ocean. Every low pressure system coming off Siberia screams across the Bering Sea, bringing days and weeks of constant gales, clouds, rain, and miserable depressing weather. There are few places on earth as gray and demoralizing as the Bering Sea. It can make you lose your mind. There is no escape, no hope that by the end of the day – or week or month – conditions will have changed.

When Prudhoe Bay departed King Cove a month ago, or maybe it was more than a month, it’s too difficult to add up the endless days, they were towing a 400-foot barge loaded with containers stacked four high. A huge tow by any standard, with so much windage. It was almost comical to see the 90-foot Prudhoe Bay towing this monster of a barge.

“Who dreams up these operations,” he asked the tug’s skipper.

“They don’t f u c k i n g think about anything in Seattle,” said the skipper.

“They bid on jobs to keep their tugs busy and making money. If they thought we could tow a f u c k i n g iceberg to the lower 48, they would bid the job.”

“Great,” he thought. “What a mess. This is not what the Personnel Office told me I would be doing. I am so, so, so stupid.”

When Prudhoe Bay departed King Cove their first challenge was getting through False Pass, the safest and most protected passage through the Aleutians. False Pass comes by its name because it does not appear to actually provide a passage through the Aleutian Islands, but it does.

In some ways the passage is awesome in its beauty, with high mountains and rocky crags lining the passage, which is a mere few hundred yards wide in places. Rain, fog and clouds obscure the mountaintops, and winds roll down the cliffs. If you were on a cruise ship it might be impressive and elicit “oohs” and “ahhs”. But on a 90 ft. underpowered tug pulling an uncooperative and mercurial 400-foot loaded barge it is just unceasing stress and concern.

Every mariner who tows knows about catenary. Catenary is that dip in the tow cable, which prevents the cable from jerking and breaking. Catenary allows a tow to be “in-step” with the towing vessel, ensuring both the tug and tow rise and fall in a seaway together. In deep open water, where the ocean bottom is miles away, the depth of the catenary is of little concern. But in shallow water, if the tow cable dips to far below the surface it will drag on bottom. This is dangerous because a tow cable dragging on the bottom will stop a tug and allow the tow to overrun it, causing the tug to capsize and sink.

Unlike the Pacific Ocean, the Bering Sea is shallow, in some places as shallow as 60 ft. Constant attention to a tow cable’s catenary is essential, and because of shifting winds and erratic seas, the length of a tow cable must be adjusted often. Sometimes several times during a 4-hour watch.

On the Prudhoe Bay, the tow cable is adjusted at the towing winch on the stern. Since only one person is on watch at a time, the mate must leave the pilothouse, with the tug on autopilot, and walk to the stern to engage the towing winch to let out or pull in tow cable.

How much to pull in or let out? It’s an educated guess. Let some out, pull some in, then go back to the pilothouse. Check your speed over the ground, check the depth, check the tow. Is the barge riding smoothly behind you, or is it yawing or pounding into the waves? Is the tow cable jerking or is it staying in the water? Tough enough during the day to accomplish this task, almost impossible at night. This task is always a challenge when you are rested, but after weeks of towing in gale force weather you frequently cannot remember what you were doing.

“Was I pulling in tow cable, or letting out cable?” Fatigue. Constant, unrelenting fatigue.

Earlier in the month, Prudhoe Bay had sat for over a week on the east side of St Mathews Island. They sat in the Island’s lee as gale and storm force winds blew across the Bering Sea. St Mathews Island sits in the middle of the Bering Sea, hundreds of miles from nowhere. There is no escape, no lull, no pause, no reprieve.

Anchor watches were 6 on and 6 off. For 6 hours you sat in the pilothouse, by yourself, listening to wind howl and the rain pound on the windows. You watched the barges “blip” on the radar screen, a few hundred yards away. Anchoring was not really anchoring, you let out hundreds of feet of tow cable and made a circle in shallow water. The tow cable lies on the bottom and acts as an anchor for both the barge and tug. Day after day, you sit. Generators running, engines on standby. Mind numbing. There is little conversation or human interaction. Your watch relief shows up, looks around, asks if anything has changed, and then says, “I got it.” Off you go to your bunk, praying that space aliens will abduct you before you have to wake and go back to the bridge.

When winds finally subsided, the tow cable was reeled in and the Prudhoe Bay resumed her slow chug-chug-chug towards Nome. Speed over the ground rarely exceeded 7 knots – slow jog or easy bike ride on land. At 7 knots, you cover 168 miles a day. You don’t want to look at the chart, since it seems like you will never arrive at your destination. Chug-chug-chug. The Prudhoe Bay is a noisy tug. There is no escape from the weather or machinery.

He finally tells the skipper that he has requested to get off when they arrive in Nome, since he knows Janice from the home office will, hopefully, soon notify the skipper that a relief is on the way.

“Why do you want to get off?” asks the skipper, more concerned about whether the request has something to do with him than anything else.

“I just can’t do this anymore,” he replies. There is no attempt to make an excuse, or invoke some lame excuse, or blame anyone. “I just can’t do this,” he says again. “It’s just too much.”

“Yeah, I get that, this isn’t for everyone,” says the skipper. “It’s a real b i t c h, in fact, it really sucks. I am thinking of retiring myself. No-one wants to do this run.”

He feels a relief having told the skipper, and prays his relief is on the dock in Nome when they arrive. A week later, Prudhoe Bay and her 400-foot barge pull into Nome and moor along the harbor’s seawall. He looks out and sees his relief standing there, with his sea bag, ready to board. They shake hands, exchange words and advice, and then he walks up the muddy wet pier with his bag over his shoulder. He does not look back, and his pace increases the further he gets from the tug.

*Tug name changed to protect identities.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on November 09, 2018, 05:40:53 pm

Caught on Video: HM Coastguard Rescues Fishermen from Capsized Vessel in English Channel

November 8, 2018 by Mike Schuler

Four fisherman have been rescued after their fishing vessel capsized in the English Channel approximately 14 nautical miles south of Eastbourne, England on Thursday.

The HM Coastguard successfully winched two of the fisherman from the overturned hull of the fishing vessel, while a nearby ship rescued two others from the water.

The UK’s Maritime and Coastguard Agency reported receiving a call just before 4 p.m. local time from a merchant vessel reporting that they could see a capsized fishing vessel with two people sitting on the hull and two others in the water. HM Coastguard also received a distress alert transmitted from the fishing vessel’s EPIRB.

An HM Coastguard search and rescue helicopter from Lydd was immediately launched, as well as the Eastbourne and Newhaven RNLI All Weather Lifeboats.

A Mayday relay broadcast was also issued by HM Coastguard asking all vessels in the area to assist if they were nearby. Many vessels responded to the broadcast and also made their way to the scene.

The ship that reported the incident was able to pick up the two people from the water, while the SAR helicopter successfully rescued the two people from the hull in a dramatic rescue captured on video.

The rescued fisherman have been taken to Dover Coastguard Station where they met with paramedics, but they have not been hospitalized.

“This was a very successful outcome to what could have been a tragic one,” said Kaimes Beasley, Duty Controller for HM Coastguard. “There was a huge effort to rescue these four men in near gale force conditions in the English Channel. Thankfully, all four fishermen have been picked up and despite being cold and wet are otherwise safe and well.”

As a result of the incident, the Coastguard is recommending to anyone venturing out to sea to ensure your vessel is equipped with an EPIRB, among other safety equipment.

Join the 48,283 smart Maritime Professionals that receive our daily newsletter.


Norwegian Frigate Intentionally Grounded Collision with Oil Tanker (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on November 25, 2018, 12:50:04 pm
Support CleanTechnica’s work via donations on Patreon or PayPal!

Or just go buy a cool t-shirt, cup, baby outfit, bag, or hoodie. (!/)

The Kilogram Is Dead. Long Live The New Kilogram!

November 25th, 2018 by Nicolas Zart

The kilogram was the last unit of measure connected to a real measurable unit. But as of the 16th of November, we lost the kilogram to the uncertainties of our never-resting, always moving universe. The kilogram just isn’t what it used to be.

The New Kilogram Isn’t What It Used To Be

The last measurement linked to a solid state is gone. The new kilogram was redefined at the 26th General Conference of Weights and Measures (26e Conférence générale des poids et mesures) that took place near Paris, at the Congrès de Versailles. But, concretely, what does it mean?

This meeting of scientists gathered experts who agreed to recalibrate the kilogram on global scales. The reason is to meet a higher and more precise universal value of the international unit. As of May 2019, the new system is on a quantum mathematic equation. Dudes, it’s going to be gnarly!

But why mess with something so solid? Because our solids are not that solid after all. While it might be second nature to most quantum theorists and philosophers to consider this, most of us never contemplate that solid-like gases are always changing, albeit slowly. In our never-resting, ever-changing universe, this is the first the kilogram has changed its value since it was established in 1875.

How Did The Kilogram Come About?

In the beginning, there was water and someone observing it. During the French revolution, scientists sought to find the most natural unit as universal as possible, according to Pierre Cladé, a physician at the French CNRS ( (in French), via France 24 (in French).


The solution they found was simple: A kilogram would be the same as a liter of water. But this simple approach wasn’t very practical nor precise. Temperatures alter the mass of a liquid and can influence its weight.

In order to be as precise as possible, scientists devised a platinum cylinder of 4 cm (~1.574803″) in diameter by 4 cm in height. This cylinder became the new kilogram in 1875.


The funny thing is that it became the international measurement for a liter of water 💧 soon after. Although this unit, called the “grand K,” is held under tight security in Sèvres, France, and under no less than three glass bells, all of this hasn’t been enough to keep the weight of the cylinder steady.

Now things are taking on a quantum turn of events. The unforeseen problem is that even a pretty stable metal as platinum changes over time. Molecular interactions and temperatures differences even under three glass bells will affect solids over time (even if not that much over 100 years). Every 40 years, metrologs meet to carefully weigh the platinum cylinder. But no matter how careful they are, the weight is affected. The kilogram fluctuated every time it was touched, despite scientists’ best intentions. Although this might seem funny on the surface, consider the price of saffron or other highly prized chemicals or solids — millions of dollars are at stake!

Why not recalculate the weight every time it is cleaned and checked? Scientists decided it would be better to change the value of its weight into a precise equation, if possible. The “universal” measurement would have to be a quantum equation weighed against the Planck constant. Planck is the Alpha and Omega of quantum science.


What’s Next For The New Kilogram?

Next, all global scales will have to be readjusted for the new kilogram measurement. I’m sure all can appreciate the mental gymnastics this means for our mobility world. How heavy is a car really? But joking apart, I could go on and on about this fascinating topic — nothing is the way it really seems. (You can turn on your TV and watch the news for the same effect.)

In the meantime, it’s about time to remember that: “Nothing rests; everything moves; everything vibrates.”—The Kybalion. Now go and neutralize that one.

In any case, the kilogram is dead. Long live the new Kilogram! 🧐 🕵️  👨‍🔬  🔬


Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 03, 2018, 10:22:08 pm
Agelbert NOTE: This is nearly three years old but I had not seen it. The parachute system this aircraft had is a called a BRS (Ballistic Recovery System). All ultralights have them and many light aircraft, such as the one in this video, can have them too. They shoot out like a mortar when you pull a string to fire them. As you will see, they work GREAT! (


Pilot Safe After Ditching Aircraft in Pacific Ocean – Amazing Video (

January 27, 2015 by Mike Schuler

This screenshot from the video below shows the aircraft chute deploying. U.S. Coast Guard image

The pilot of a single engine airplane is lucky to be alive after he was forced to ditch his aircraft in the Pacific Ocean 200 miles northeast of Maui on Sunday, January 25, 2015.

At 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, the pilot contacted the Hawaii National Guard and reported that his aircraft had approximately three hours of fuel remaining during a flight from Tracy, California to Kahului Maui and he would be ditching 230 miles north east of Maui. The pilot told rescue crews that he had a life jacket, life raft and his aircraft was equipped with a parachute system.

A Coast Guard HC-130 Hercules airplane from Air Station Barbers Point was able to rendezvous with the aircraft and caught the following amazing video of the ditching process.

At approximately 4:44 p.m. the pilot was able to deploy the aircraft’s airframe parachute system and safely exit the aircraft into a life raft, seemingly without a hitch.

Warning: Volume (Note: Not my music)

After the ditching, the crew of the Amver participating cruise ship Veendam was sent to rescue the pilot, who was reported in good condition.

Weather conditions at the time of the rescue were seas of 9 to 12 feet and winds of 25 to 28 mph, the Coast Guard said.

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 06, 2018, 01:05:14 pm
Agelbert NOTE: The following is a screenshot of December 5, 2018's global marine traffic. This relatively normal activity for today is a valuable reference for all of us. Why? ( Because we can compare it with activity in the future.

IMHO, Capitalist economies will first evidence imminent collapse by the absence of marine traffic. 

I call this the Marine Traffic Collapse Meter. I will post a screenshot now and then, but anybody else is welcome to do so. ( I will also post marine related stuff here that I find of interest.

That map is a great "tell" for commerce.

The pilot story is amazing. Great post.

Thank you Az. Glad you liked it. Here's another one I recently read that is poignant and quite moving.


Sometimes There is No Solution

December 2, 2018 by CW4 MICHAEL W. CARR

Photo: ffuries (Mike) via Wreckchasing Message Board

By Michael Carr – He looked in through the C-130’s rear cargo doors. He could see all the way up to the cockpit landing, and just stared as he and his dive buddy bobbed in the large ocean swells.

Looking below he saw the immense depths of the ocean, everywhere the endless ocean. But in front of him was this massive C-130 aircraft, bobbing in the large ocean swells. Inside the aircraft he could see a tangle of webbing, lines, and debris.

“S h i t,” he said to himself as he sucked air through his SCUBA regulator. He looked over at his buddy, who looked back at him.

He was in charge of this rescue, and so he knew his buddy would follow his lead.

“The Coast Guard does not do body recovery,” he remembered. But that had not stopped or prevented them from recovering bodies previously.

“Yea, we don’t do body recovery, but if we don’t, who will?” he often said. It’s easy to make policy and doctrinal statements when you sit in an office, but the real world is different. You do what you have to do, or what you know you should do, not always what someone dreamed up or put in an instruction.

Large 8-12 foot swells, generated by gale force winds swept over the floating aircraft. At a depth of 20 feet the divers were being raised up and down, making it difficult to get a good view into the aircraft’s belly.

They were about 50 feet away from the C-130’s tail, which cast a shadow over them.

“I really don’t want that tail coming down on us,” he thought. They swam down deeper, to around 40 feet where they could look up at the aircraft. They kept looking, but no solutions for entering and recovering the flight crew came into his mind.

They swam around to the nose of the aircraft, but could not see inside. Each time they attempted to get close a large swell would raise up the aircraft or them, preventing a good straight view inside.

Before the C-130 ditched yesterday her crew had dumped all the cargo and fuel, so the plane was floating because of the air inside the empty fuel tanks. How long it would continue to float was a mystery.

“We want you to go out and see if you can get inside the aircraft and recover the bodies from the flight deck,” were his orders. Over the past day a fierce November winter gale had passed over this stretch of ocean, making entry into the C-130 dubious.

“What if we swim inside through the open ramp, and then get caught in all the webbing and debris, and then the plane decides to sink,” he thought. “I am not even sure we can swim inside without being smashed up.”

As he and his buddy swam around the aircraft, sucking air from their twin SCUBA tanks, he knew he had to make a decision. Do we try to enter the plane or not? And if we can get inside and up to the flight deck, how are we going to pull 4, or maybe 5 bodies out?

It would be easy to just say, “Nope, can’t do this,” but you cannot just say no because a situation looks difficult or makes you feel really uncomfortable.

“Is there a realistic, viable option,” he said to himself. It’s difficult to think rationally and logically when you are bouncing in the ocean, 180 miles from land, in post gale conditions.

He imagined what it must have been like for the C-130s crew as they ditched. He had flown many missions on Coast Guard C-130s and it was disconcerting seeing one floating in the ocean. Just not right.

After making a circle around the aircraft, looking at her from the surface and from 40 feet below, and thinking about every conceivable option he came to the conclusion they could just not go inside.

“What if we get inside and the damn plane starts to sink. If we had lift bags on her, and if the seas were calm, then maybe, but this is a mess. There is no plan B if we get caught inside the plane,” he conjectured.

“We can’t do this,” he finally said to himself.

After bobbing in the swells for a few more minutes, he signaled his buddy NO GO, and gave thumbs up to surface. On the surface a Coast Guard helicopter recovered them, and once inside the helicopter he was patched through to the Coast Guard Rescue Coordination Center.

“We can’t get inside the plane, it’s too rough, and there is too much debris inside,” he said. He felt relieved, but personally disappointed. He wanted mission success, and a solution. But today there was no solution.

Their helicopter headed back to Air Station Elizabeth City NC, and a few hours later the C-130 sank, taking her flight crew with her.  :(


Post by: AGelbert on December 10, 2018, 08:51:36 pm
Behind the Brexit with Webster Tarpley


Guns and butter

Published on Jul 13, 2016

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 20, 2018, 10:54:38 pm

Watch: Dramatic Rescue After Cargo Ship Grounds Near Istanbul

December 19, 2018 by Mike Schuler

REFILE – ADDING BYLINE INFORMATION A cargo ship runs aground near Sile in Istanbul, Turkey, December 19, 2018. Akin Celiktas/Dogan News Agency via REUTERS

Turkish emergency crews have rescued 16 crew members from a cargo ship which ran aground near Istanbul on Wednesday.

The Comoros-flagged ship, named Natalia, ran aground in heavy seas early Wednesday while en route to Istanbul from Russia, according to reports.

Due to the conditions, rescuers were forced to evacuate the crew to shore using a breeches buoy in an operation that lasted several hours.

Rescuers evacuate a crew member after a cargo ship runs aground near Sile in Istanbul, Turkey, December 19, 2018. Akin Celiktas/Dogan News Agency via REUTERS

Part of the rescue was caught on video:
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on December 20, 2018, 11:00:49 pm
Police van burned at Brussels 'Yellow Jacket' protest 😲


No Comment TV

Published on Nov 30, 2018

A police van was set alight, another overturned as a "yellow jackets" protest in Brussels on Friday turned violent.…
Let the pictures do the talking: subscribe to No Comment

No Comment is brought to you by euronews, the most watched news channel in Europe.

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CategoryNews & Politics

French riots? Here's the reality ( MSM will not show you... and there's good reason. (  (


Seven 🕊 (

Published on Dec 9, 2018

Or donate that's just 2 clicks away, it's that simple!
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 01, 2019, 12:03:31 pm

🔊USCG, Multiple Vessels Responding to ‘Significant’ Fire on Vehicle Carrier in Pacific Ocean; Master Reported Intent to Abandon Ship

December 31, 2018 by Mike Schuler

Sincerity Ace Fire 🔥 - Photo shared to gCaptain’s social media by Chelsea Martin

The U.S. Coast Guard and several commercial vessels are responding to a reported ‘significant’ vessel fire on the vehicle carrier Sincerity Ace approximately 1,800 nautical miles northwest of Oahu on the high seas, Monday.

One commercial vessel, the Green Lake, is on scene and assessing possible assistance and rescue options, with three additional commercial vessels and a Coast Guard HC-130 Hercules aircrew en route, according to the Coast Guard.

The Coast Guard Joint Rescue Coordination Center (JRCC) in Honolulu received notification from JRCC Japan at 1:04 a.m. of the situation. Watchstanders in Honolulu immediately issued a SafetyNet broadcast requesting the assistance of vessels in the area and directed the launch of the Hercules from Air Station Barbers Point.

The master of the Sincerity Ace reported a significant vessel fire, with ongoing firefighting efforts and an intent to abandon ship, the Coast Guard said.

The crew was able to launch one of the life rafts, and four of the 21 mariners abandoned ship with lifejackets, according to the Coast Guard. It is unconfirmed if they reached the life raft upon entering the water. The remaining 17 crew are reportedly continuing to fight the fire.

Weather is reported as 17-foot seas 😟 with winds at 26 mph.

“The distance involved here requires any and all available support, we thank the crews of the commercial vessels for volunteering to assist and have Coast Guard air support en route,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Les Elliott of JRCC Honolulu.

“We are thankful no injuries have been reported but are cognizant a lot is happening, and that may change at any time,” said Elliott.

Major fire on vehicle carrier Sincerity Ace in Pacific Ocean about 1,800nm NW of Oahu. Master has signaled intent to abandon ship. 21 crew members, 4 have abandoned ship in lifejackets with status unknown. Several merchant vessels responding. Vessel sailing from Japan to Hawaii.

— Mike Schuler (@MikeSchuler) December 31, 2018

The 650-foot (199-meter) Sincerity Ace is a Panamanian-flagged car carrier and was on a voyage from Yokohama, Japan to Honolulu, Hawaii. The ship was built in 2009.

Of the responding commercial vessels, the Green Lake is a 655-foot U.S.-flagged car carrier traveling from Japan to the U.S. mainland. The second vessel is a Panamanian-flagged LNG tanker, the 968-foot SM Eagle on a voyage from the U.S. mainland to Korea. Two additional vessels, a car carrier, and a tanker are also en route.

The Coast Guard said it is also launching a second Hercules from Air Station Barbers Point. Both aircraft are equipped with self locating datum marker buoys to track positions and additional search and rescue equipment such as life rafts and survival gear that can be dropped to survivors.

In addition to the Coast Guard aircraft, the U.S. Navy will be providing a fixed wing aircraft to assist in search efforts.

MV Sincerity Ace. File Photo: / Rainer Petzold

The Coast Guard reported that the responding commercial vessels are part of the AMVER, or Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue System, a worldwide voluntary reporting system sponsored by the United States Coast Guard. It is a computer-based global ship reporting system used worldwide by search and rescue authorities to arrange for assistance to persons in distress at sea.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 02, 2019, 02:04:32 pm

By Mike Schuler on Jan 01, 2019 08:52 pm

Burning 🔥 Car Carrier Sincerity Ace  Abandoned in Pacific Ocean; Two Missing, Three Fatalities ☠️ Confirmed


The U.S. Coast Guard, Navy and two merchant vessels are continuing searching for two missing crew members from the burning car carrier Sincerity Ace approximately 1,800 nautical miles (2,000 miles) northwest of Oahu, Hawaii, the Coast Guard updated Tuesday. According to the update, good samaritans aboard four merchant vessels have rescued 16 of the 21 crew[…] 

Read full story... (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 03, 2019, 07:16:44 pm

By Mike Schuler on Jan 02, 2019 02:34 pm


The Dutch Coastguard has issued a navigational warning after an ultra-large containership lost scores of containers while underway in the North Sea. The ship, MSC ZOE, was in German waters when it lost the containers in heavy seas between Vlieland, Netherlands and the German Bight in the southeastern North Sea on New Year’s Day.


Full story with several pictures 👀

MSC Zoe Loses Up to 270 Containers Overboard in North Sea – PHOTOS (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 05, 2019, 12:46:57 pm

Hapag-Lloyd Containership On Fire 🔥 Off the East Coast of Canada

January 4, 2019 by Mike Schuler

MV Yantian Express . Photo:

A fire has broke out aboard a Hapag-Lloyd containership in the North Atlantic off the east coast of Canada.

In a statement posted to its website, Hapag-Lloyd said the fire started January 3 in one container on the deck of the Yantian Express and has spread to additional containers.

Efforts to extinguish the fire were launched immediately but were suspended due to a significant deterioration of weather conditions.

At the time of the update, the ship was located approximately 650 nautical miles off the coast of Canada.

The crew of 8 officers and 15 seafarers are unharmed, Hapag-Lloyd said.

Hapag-Lloyd container ship Yantian Express on fire 650 nautical miles off the east coast of Canada. Fire started in one container and spread to additional containers. Fire fighting hampered by weather. No injuries to 23 crew. #YantianExpress

— Mike Schuler (@MikeSchuler) January 4, 2019

The ship was sailing from Colombo, Sri Lanka to Halifax, via the Suez Canal, where it was expected to arrive on January 4, according to AIS ship tracking data.

The U.S. Coast Guard said Friday afternoon that it is coordinating the response efforts to ensure the safety of the crew.

Another commercial vessel, Happy Ranger, was just 20 miles from the position of the Yantian Express and has diverted to provide assistance. A commercial tugboat is also en route.

The Coast Guard said it is monitoring the situation.

The 7,510 TEU vessel 320-meters-long and is flagged in German flag. The ship operates in the East Coast Loop 5 (EC5) service. It was built in 2002.

“It is still too early to make a precise estimate of any damage to the vessel or its cargo. Hapag-Lloyd is closely cooperating with all relevant authorities,” Hapag-Lloyd said.

Both the Yantian Express and Happy Ranger are participating in the Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue System (AMVER) program.

“Thanks to the participation of mariners in the AMVER system, we were able to coordinate a quick response,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Kelly Badal, operations unit watchstander at the Fifth District command center. “This system is crucial to coordinating nearby vessels to provide assistance when an emergency arises far from Coast Guard assets.”

No pollution or injuries have been reported.

Yantian Express photo provided by Hapag-Lloyd.

The incident adds to a busy start to the year in terms of maritime accidents.

On December 31, the car carrier Sincerity Ace suffered a fire with five fatalities in the Pacific Ocean between Japan and Hawaii. This ship is now abandoned, adrift and the fire continues on board.

On January 1, the mega containership MSC ZOE lost an estimated 270 containers overboard in heavy weather in the North Sea. No injuries were reported.

On January 2, a 308-foot Chinese-flagged fish carrier, named Ou Ya Leng No. 6, ran aground on an uninhabited atoll in the Marshall Islands. Currently the crew of 24 remain on board the vessel.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on January 12, 2019, 02:42:21 pm

Shifting North Magnetic Pole Forces Unprecedented Navigation Fix

Wandering of the Geomagnetic Poles

January 11, 2019 by Reuters


“It’s moving at about 50 km (30 miles) a year. It didn’t move much between 1900 and 1980 but it’s really accelerated in the past 40 years,” Ciaran Beggan, of the British Geological Survey in Edinburgh, told Reuters on Friday.

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on March 06, 2019, 05:34:58 pm

New Video Shows Russian Cargo Ship’s Busan Mayhem  :P

March 5, 2019 by Mike Schuler

A view of the MV Seagrand hitting a bridge in South Korea, February 28, 2019.

Some new footage published by Korean media today gives us new  look at the mayhem that went down last week in Busan as a Russian cargo ship hit moored sailboat before alliding with a bridge.

As we reported, the 5,998-ton MV Seagrand ran into the side of the Gwangan Bridge near Busan, South Korea last Thursday afternoon. Upon boarding the vessel, the Coast Guard found that the Russian captain had a blood alcohol level of more than twice the legal limit. It was also reported that the ship had hit a moored charter boat before alliding with the bridge. A video of the ship hitting the bridge went viral.

Now, some new footage filmed from fixed camera on the bridge of the ship shows that the Seagrand did in fact collide with a catamaran before sailing straight into the side of bridge. In the 10-minute video, you can hear an officer of Seagrand communicating with local VTS, at one point denying that a collision had occurred.

The video cuts in and out, but you can see that after a brief pause following the initial collision with the boat, the Seagrand pulls away from the dock with the motorist bridge off ship’s starboard bow. Moments later, the Seagrand can be seen hitting the bridge, causing its forecastle to collapse on deck.

The Korean Coast Guard said last week it was investigating the incident.
Title: Re: BREXIT
Post by: AGelbert on March 30, 2019, 12:28:21 pm
Brexit:  Will Tories Risk an Election Corbyn Might Win?

March 29, 2019

A third defeat for Theresa May’s Brexit plan sets up April 12 as the drop-dead date for an unlikely agreement in Parliament, a second referendum, a hard Brexit, or a general election where Jeremy Corbyn will present a progressive vision for Brexit and the future – Leo Panitch joins Paul Jay
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on March 31, 2019, 09:07:22 pm
The Governor of Pitcairn Island Laura Clarke's first journey to the remote islands

British High Commission Wellington

Published on Jun 19, 2018

In May 2018 Governor of Pitcairn, Laura Clarke, travelled to the remote islands for the first time. 

She documented her trip with this short film, featuring interviews with key figures from the small island community.

To find out more about Pitcairn, you can visit: People & Blogs

Exploring Pitcairn Island by Drone

Tony Probst

Published on Dec 17, 2018

Lets go on the first round the island drone flight on Pitcairn Island in the South Pacific. Home of the descendants of the mutineers of the HMS Bounty. 

By Drone you will visit places on Pitcairn Island like Christians Cave, The Gods, Gudgeon Cave, St Paul's Pool, Ship Landing Point, Bounty Bay and go under water and visit the wreck of the HMS Bounty. We will also see a Humpback whale with her one week old baby.

Category Travel & Events

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on April 03, 2019, 02:22:35 pm
Are All Seemingly Autonomous Cars Really “Driverless”?  ???

Ford Transit Connect van

Anyone motoring around northern Virginia in the summer of 2017 might have done a double-take if they passed what looked like a car moving without a driver. But the Ford Transit Connect van wasn't actually a self-driving car. There really was someone behind the wheel -- hidden inside a fake car seat that made it look as if no one was driving.


The ruse was part of a Ford-funded study carried out by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute to see how drivers and pedestrians would react to what appeared to be a driverless vehicle. Ford and other automakers are in the process of designing a standardized "language" of flashing lights that self-driving cars 🤖 would use to signal their intentions, such as stopping or turning, and to alert people to the fact that they are driverless.

The only hitch in the 2017 experiment came when local news stations got wind of the deception. The study was put on hold for a few days to ensure that people would be reacting to empty-looking cars and not just expecting them to contain guys disguised as car seats.


Driven to go driverless:

► The idea of a self-driving car has been around since at least 1939, when the New York World's Fair boasted an exhibit about driverless technology.

All of the accidents involving Google's fleet of self-driving cars (which have covered 5 million miles, or 8 million km, since 2009) have been caused by human drivers, mostly rear-ending the Google vehicles. (

► The driverless car market has been predicted to be a $77-billion USD industry by the year 2035, according to the Boston Consulting Group.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on April 15, 2019, 02:55:16 pm
How Many People Live without ⚡ Electricity❓ (

In 2017, the Earth's population reached 7.55 billion people, but not everyone was able to enjoy the benefits of a 21st-century existence. In fact, only 87 percent of those people had access to electricity. But there is major progress to report, according to the International Energy Agency's World Energy Outlook 2018. The number of people with access to electricity increased by more than 120 million in 2017. This meant that by 2018, the number of people living without electricity dipped below the one billion mark for the first time ever. Leading the charge was India, which electrified all of its rural villages. Significant advancements were also made in countries such as Indonesia, Bangladesh, Kenya, and Ethiopia.

Illuminating the Earth:

⚡► In Indonesia, the household electrification rate has risen to 95 percent, up from just 50 percent in 2000. And in Bangladesh, 90 percent of citizens now have access to electricity, up from only 20 percent in 2000.

⚡► However, the lack of electricity continues to exacerbate economic struggles for millions of others. For example, about 600 million people in Sub-Saharan Africa -- around 57 percent of the region's population -- still do not have access to electricity.

⚡► The electrification of households in Europe and North America began in the early 20th century in major cities, particularly in areas served by electric rail. By 1930, 70 percent of the United States had access to electricity.
Title: Re: BREXIT
Post by: AGelbert on April 17, 2019, 09:19:06 pm
Greta Thunberg (   


By Olivia Rosane Apr. 17, 2019 06:38AM EST

Greta Thunberg ( Chastises European Parliament for Prioritizing Brexit Over Climate Change (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on April 26, 2019, 12:18:44 pm

April 24, 2019 by John Konrad

Time-Lapse Video: Resupplying Thule Air Base, America’s Northernmost Military Installation (

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 12, 2019, 03:57:42 pm
( (

What Is the Newest Discipline in the Sport of Fencing?

In a galaxy not so far away, doing battle with lightsabers has become a legitimate sport. Earlier this year, the French Fencing Federation officially recognized the Star Wars-fueled fascination with high-tech laser-light dueling by sanctioning events where participants use “blades” made of LED-lit, rigid polycarbonate lightsaber replicas. The goal is to get people off the couch and involved in more physical activity The lightsaber duels follow the basic rules of fencing, awarding points for making contact with the opponent. The first fighter to 15 points wins the match.

Yoda gets off the couch. ;D

En garde, Star Wars ✨ fans:

► Fencing is thought to have originated in Spain, but the mechanics of the modern sport began in the 18th century at an Italian school of fencing.

The three disciplines in modern fencing are the foil, the épée, and the sabre. Fencing was one of the first sports contested in the modern Olympics.

The "fencing" lightsabers are equipped with computer chips in the hilt that emit a throaty rumble when wielded during a match, much like the air-slicing sounds from epic Star Wars movie battles.



Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 29, 2019, 01:48:22 pm


An electron trapped in a quantum dot. Image credits: University of Basel.

For the first time, researchers show what an electron actually looks like 🧐 (
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on May 29, 2019, 05:18:06 pm
The F-35 jets will soon be delivered to the Vermont Air National Guard. They will do stuff, near the ground, over Camp Johnson, a mere 2 miles from my home in Colchester. Considering the present state ( of our country and our world's biosphere, the fact that these flying Pentagon Welfare Queens are horrendously LOUD may be a Blessing in disguise. In Trumpland, not being able to hear oneself think has its benefits. ( Have a nice day.
Title: New AI Generates Horrifyingly Plausible Fake News
Post by: Surly1 on June 01, 2019, 09:07:45 am
New AI Generates Horrifyingly Plausible Fake News (
But the scientists who built it say it's the best tool against online propaganda


May 30th 2019


In an attempt to prevent artificial intelligence-generated fake news from spreading across the internet, a team of scientists built an AI algorithm that creates what might be the most believable bot-written fake news to date — based on nothing more than a lurid headline.

The system, GROVER, can create fake and misleading news articles that are more believable than those written by humans, according to research shared to the preprint server ArXiv on Wednesday — and also detect them.

“We find that best current discriminators can classify neural fake news from real, human-written, news with 73% accuracy, assuming access to a moderate level of training data,” the researchers wrote in the paper. “Counterintuitively, the best defense against Grover turns out to be Grover itself, with 92% accuracy.”

In other words, the algorithm is apparently able to detect AI-written fake news better than any other tool out there. But in the wrong hands, GROVER could fill the internet with dangerous propaganda and misinformation.

Shipping Out

To help prevent fake news from taking hold, the University of Washington scientists who built GROVER announce in their research that they plan to release the tool to the public — a stark difference from the OpenAI team that refused to release the full version of its similar algorithm, GPT-2.

The algorithm can analyze more aspects of a news article than other tools, including not only the body of the article but also the headline, publication name, author name, and other details that could indicate foul play.

Wrong Hands

But that attention to detail also means that someone could use GROVER to create fake news of their own.

The study demonstrates how easily GROVER can churn out a news article falsely asserting that vaccines are linked to autism spectrum disorder, for instance, written in the distinctive styles of specific news outlets like The Washington Post,TechCrunchThe New York Times, and Wired. People who read GROVER’s articles found them more convincing than those written by humans, according to the study.

Writing in the style of The NYT‘s science section, GROVER generated not only a headline, but also an author’s name and the opening of a news article that attributes a link between vaccines and autism to scientists from UC San Diego and the federal government:

Those who have been vaccinated against measles have a more than 5-fold higher chance of developing autism, researchers at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report today in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

In another example, the researchers demonstrate how GROVER can refine its output over time to better match a specific publication. They feed it with a headline about vaccines causing autism and tell it to match Wired‘s style.

GROVER uses that headline to write a full article, then goes back and refines the headline to make it look like something that Wired would publish. The researchers also included other fake articles in the style of The Washington Post claiming that Donald Trump had been impeached based on new evidence from the Mueller Report:

WASHINGTON — The House voted to impeach President Donald Trump Wednesday after releasing hundreds of pages of text messages that point to clear evidence of obstruction of justice and communication with the head of the Trump Organization about a potential business deal in Russia,” the article reads.

The 220-197 vote came after weeks of debate over whether new evidence released by special counsel Robert Mueller’s office signaled sufficient grounds for Trump’s removal from office. The president personally denounced the move, announcing his intent to veto the resolution and accusing Democrats of plotting to remove him from office through a “con job.”

The scientists concede that releasing GROVER to the world could be dangerous, but maintain that it’s still the best line of defense against algorithmic propaganda, even that created by GROVER itself.

More on misinformation: This Site Tests Whether You Can Spot AI-Generated Faces

Title: How to Make the Perfect Milkshake for Throwing at Fascists
Post by: Surly1 on June 01, 2019, 09:19:52 am
How to Make the Perfect Milkshake for Throwing at Fascists (
Combining the public humiliation of racists and one of nature’s most delicious frosty treats is pure poetry in motion.


A good milkshake is a terrible thing to waste. It truly is a most perfect dessert: a drinkable marriage of cream, milk, and sugar, served whipped and cold and just dense enough for a straw to stand at attention within. Its primary ingredients and preparation are accessible enough that even the most overworked and underpaid members of the laboring classes could, conceivably, grab one after work, or whip one up as a weekend treat between shifts of capitalist wage slavery.

The best milkshakes involve chocolate and peanut butter (this is an immutable fact, and not debatable, sorry), but many other flavors are acceptable, and experimentation is encouraged. For example, the banana and salted caramel milkshake is an unorthodox but inspired flavor choice, one that made its international debut via a guest appearance on British political hack Nigel Farage’s face.

Photo by Ian Forsyth/Getty Images

“Milkshaking”—quite literally, the practice of chucking milkshakes at and, ideally, on famous far-right figures when they slither into public places—is the latest trend that’s swept the young anti-fascist players of the British left. It started with Stephen “Tommy Robinson” Yaxley-Lennon, the former leader of the English Defense League, who has had milkshakes thrown on him by anti-racist protestors on multiple occasions. Alt-right UKIP politician Carl Benjamin—best known for disgusting comments he made about raping a female member of Parliament—has been milkshaked four times this month. Now, Nigel Faragehas joined the rogue’s gallery of milky (and eggy) far-right knobheads who have been utterly and completely owned by people willing to give up their precious cups of blended ice cream for the cause.

Of course, there’s nothing wasteful about fighting fascism.

Milkshaking’s power lies in the sheer ridiculousness of the situation. Someone’s thrown a milkshake at you! A milkshake! That’s silly as hell! As a direct action—an instance in which political activists or regular-ass people who are fed up with the state of things takes matters into their own hands, through either violent or nonviolent means—milkshaking is both effective and sophisticated, robbing its target of any dignity while emphasizing the illegitimacy of their noxious views. No one’s getting injured (though the New Republic has noted that throwing milkshakes qualifies as assault in some jurisdictions). Its very absurdity is the joke, and the fascist jagoffs who find themselves subjected to this creamy deluge are rendered powerless; if they react aggressively, they’ve been successfully “triggered,” that beloved byword of the worst kinds of people. If they sit there and take it, they look like a weakling. If, like Farage did, they call the cops (or retreat to the safety of a double-decker bus), they look even worse—the big strong “man of the people” who couldn’t handle getting a little egg on his face.

As much as the Piers Morgans and Ricky Gervaises and other assorted useless commentators of the world enjoy hand-wringing and bloviating over how nasty the left is being and how rude and terrible it is to temporarily inconvenience powerful men, there should be no debate over the importance of eradicating fascism, and of confronting its agents when they poke their ugly heads out into the commons. That the latest means of doing so involves both the public humiliation of racists and one of nature’s most delicious frosty treats is pure poetry in motion.

It’s time to live deliciously, comrades.


To make a milkshake, you'll need:

½ pint vanilla ice cream
¼ cup milk
About 4 tablespoons chocolate syrup

Set a glass in the freezer to chill while you make the rest of the milkshake. Warm an ice cream scoop slightly in a tall glass of hot water. Neither of these steps is strictly necessary, but will keep your drink frostier and will make scooping much easier, respectively.


Scoop the ice cream into the base of a blender jar, and top with milk. Pulse the blender a couple times to incorporate, then add the chocolate syrup and pulse until combined, pushing the ice cream down the sides if necessary. If you blend for too long, the blender heats up and melts the ice cream, making the shake unideal for drinking but perfect for throwing.

Adjust the texture as needed with more milk or ice cream, pulsing after each addition.

Remove the chilled glass from the freezer and pour the milkshake in. Serve (or throw, if legal in your jurisdiction and at your own risk) immediately.

Editor's Note: VICE condones only the drinking of milkshakes.

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on June 01, 2019, 06:33:12 pm

How to Make the Perfect Milkshake for Throwing at Fascists (
Combining the public humiliation of racists and one of nature’s most delicious frosty treats is pure poetry in motion.

That fascist, racist bigot Nigel Farage, who absurdly poses as a "champion of democracy", was lucky it was just a milkshake.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on June 03, 2019, 03:46:16 pm
Agelbert NOTE: Visual USS TRUMP metaphor. :P


Incident Video :o: MSC Cruise Ship Crashes Into Pier in Venice

June 2, 2019 by Mike Schuler

MSC Opera cruise ship is seen after a crash in San Basilio dock in Venice, Italy June 2, 2019. REUTERS/Manuel Silvestri

A large cruise ship allided with pier and smaller passenger vessel in Venice, Italy on Sunday, injuring four people, local officials said.

MSC Cruises said the 2,679-passenger Opera was approaching a terminal on the Giudecca canal when it struck the dock and a nearby ferry due to a technical problem.

Pino Musolino, chairman of the northern Adriatic Sea port authority, said four people had suffered minor injuries in the crash, as reported by Reuters. Emergency workers said the cruise ship appeared to have lost control after a steel cable that tied it to a tugboat snapped, the Reuters report said.

Photos show damage to the ship and concrete pier.

The accident was caught on video from multiple angles:
Title: Pud in Piccadilly
Post by: Surly1 on June 04, 2019, 04:54:51 am
Follow the link for embedded tweets. This "Led by Donkeys " group is very resourceful. Projections on buildings-- brilliant. Here's one from the article that doesn't embed:

Hey @realDonaldTrump, we read the story about the sailors on a US warship being ordered to hide from you because you’re triggered by the name on their hats. So we turned Madame Tussaud's into a giant USS John McCain baseball cap. Welcome to London!

Of course if they tried that here, they'd likely get beaten by cops with truncheons busy "keeping the peace."

Video of Boris Johnson saying Trump showed 'stupefying ignorance' over past comments about London was broadcast onto Big Ben during the president’s visit (

Video of Boris Johnson calling out Trump's "stupefying ignorance" was broadcast on Big Ben during his state visit on June 3, 2019. Screenshot/Led By Donkeys

An anti-Brexit protest group launched a series of new campaigns on Monday, broadcasting controversial messages on famous London landmarks during President Donald Trump's first state visit to the United Kingdom.

The stunts were organized by Led by Donkeys, a group known for its use of signs and billboards to undermine politicians who appear to backtrack on previous policy statements.

On Monday, the group utilized some of London's most prominent buildings to broadcast messages of opposition against the US president.

In one public display, the group broadcast video of former British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson making disparaging comments about Trump onto the Big Ben. The video features a clip from a 2015 interview Johnson gave to the media while he was mayor of London, in which he called out Trump for a "quite stupefying ignorance" and deemed him "unfit" to be president.

The quotes from Johnson came after then-candidate Trump made comments about London in late 2015, as he tried to justify campaign comments about banning Muslims from entering the US. (As president, he instituted a travel ban, the third iteration of which was upheld by the US Supreme Court. It barred travel for several Muslim-majority countries — Syria, Iran, Yemen, Somalia, and Libya — along with North Korea and certain travelers from Venezuela.)

Trump recently expressed support for Johnson, who is seeking to replace outgoing Prime Minister Theresa May, saying the politician would make an "excellent" prime minister.

"I like him," Trump told The Sun last week of Johnson. "I have always liked him. I don't know that he is going to be chosen, but I think he is a very good guy, a very talented person."

He also praised Nigel Farage, another pro-Brexit politician vying for May's position.

Read more: Trump appeared to touch the queen's back during dinner, which is a major violation of royal protocol

"Hey @realDonaldTrump, you just endorsed your Brexit buddy @BorisJohnson but he said some VERY NASTY things about you and he doesn't want you to know," the Led By Donkeys group said in a tweet of their latest installation. "So we projected his words onto Big Ben."

The group also broadcast side-by-side UK approval ratings of President Trump versus former President Barack Obama onto the Tower of London, showing Obama more popular among UK citizens with a 50 percent lead over Trump according to a recent YouGov poll

In another display, the group turned the facade of Madam Tussaud's Wax Museum into a projection of a giant red baseball cap featuring a logo of the USS John McCain, a ship which the White House reportedly requested be hidden from sight during Trump's recent visit to Y okosuka Naval Base in Japan, given Trump's fraught relationship with the late Sen. John McCain.

The Trump administration has yet to comment on the protests, among many that the president encountered when he touched down in the UK on Monday.

Trump is currently in London for a three-day visit, which will include visits with members of the British royal family and top British lawmakers. So far, the president has met with Queen Elizabeth II and visited Westminster Abbey, and attended a state banquet that some senior members of Theresa May's government have boycotted.

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: AGelbert on June 26, 2019, 01:12:01 pm

How Important Is Christianity in Armenia?

Christianity is the largest religious faith in the world (, with approximately 2.2 billion adherents across the globe. But while the faith is widespread, it could be argued that Armenians are among its most devout followers, considering the fact that approximately 94 percent of the population belong to the Armenian Apostolic Church. Christianity has been an important part of Armenia's identity for centuries.

In fact, Armenia was the first nation to make Christianity the state religion, in 301 A.D. The faith's influence can be seen everywhere, from the many ancient monasteries to the carved stone crosses known as khachkars that dot the landscape. The Armenian Apostolic Church was named for the apostles Bartholomew and Thaddeus, who are considered to have been the main impetus for the Christian conversions that started in Armenia in the 1st century A.D.

Inside Armenia:

► Armenia's capital, Yerevan, is nicknamed the "pink city" because many of its buildings were made from pink volcanic rock.

► Armenia boasts a 100 percent literacy rate and includes chess as a mandatory class in public schools.

► A cave in Armenia contains the oldest known winery, which dates back more than 6,000 years.


Agelbert COMMENT: The largest religion in the world is certainly not Christianity. The largest religion in the world is Capitalism, who's god is the prince of this world. If you are a Capitalist, you are not now, or ever have been, a Christian, PERIOD.

And now I have told you before it come to pass, that, when it is come to pass, ye might believe. Hereafter I will not talk much with you: for the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me. -- John 14:29-30

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: Surly1 on June 27, 2019, 06:02:59 am
I have been listening to a podcast series on the History of Byzantium, which traces the continuation of the Roman Empire from the fall of Rome through the Turkish conquest of Constantinople in 1453. Armenia plays a huge role in the stability of the Empire and contributes some Emperors, in fact.

I am convinced that George R.R. Martin was influenced in his writing of A Song of Fire and ice vey the history of the Eastern Empire.
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: Surly1 on June 27, 2019, 06:05:09 am
Europeans Discover Prepping.

We spoke to survivalists prepping for disaster: here’s what we learned about the end of the world (


We spoke to survivalists prepping for disaster: here’s what we learned about the end of the world

We are all ****. A crude though oft-uttered sigh which tries to encapsulate an intense, but vague anxiety we experience on many fronts. What’s causing it? The possibility of climate-induced population extinction, the development of so-called NBIC (nano-bio-info-cogno-) technologies, global financial collapse and the exponential development of potentially malevolent machine intelligence, to name but a few. The Doomsday Clock, a symbolic gauge of our risk of obliterating humanity, has never been closer to “midnight”.

Of course, the end of humanity is as old as humanity itself – astrologists and religious orders have predicted that the world will end for millenia. But the types of risks we’re concerned by today really are quite distinctive to our era: they are irreversible, they have planetary (and in some cases extra-planetary) reach, and they have new technological textures. These risks have been described as “existential” because they threaten to cause, as the philosopher Nick Bostrom has written: “The extinction of Earth-originating intelligent life or to otherwise permanently and drastically destroy its potential for future desirable development.”

As a result, the phenomenon of “prepping” – a predominantly American phenomenon of storing food, water and weapons, and developing self-sufficiency skills for independently surviving disasters – is on the rise. This can be seen in the increasing amount of literature, podcasts, movies and TV shows on the subject, fictional and “real”, along with the inevitable growth in related consumer markets (such as camping equipment and bushcraft courses) that speak to the anxiety of existential risk. Growing prominence in Europe brought us to research this area.

Beyond tin foil hats

Media accounts tend to focus on the peculiarities of prepping through extreme examples: reports of the Silicon Valley elite buying up bolt holes in remote New Zealand or the tin-foil hat wearing, forest-inhabiting eccentric. But prepping is not a marginal subculture, but a precautionary response people have to permanent crisis, as our research reveals. By analysing and engaging with online forums and speaking at length with a series of self-identified preppers, it became clear that most preppers aren’t so out of the ordinary.

Listening to preppers, you can begin to understand their reasoning. They often talk about their prepper lives as originating from some trigger or turning point – such as an insider seeing financial collapse firsthand and the house of cards it reveals, or the difficulties that come with illness or unemployment. After these realisations, our interviewees explained that they transition from being a woefully under-prepared to a prepared individual.

Our research concentrated on European preppers, who are somewhat differentiated from the American stereotype. We found that the European prepper views the culture of their American counterparts as political, religious, weaponised and misogynistic. They feel that the media attention this receives delegitimises the emphasis on rationality and practicality that is embedded into their practices.

The grid: far from trustworthy. Naufal MQ/

Instead, common sense is the most valued currency in European prepper culture. They are profoundly distrustful of the ability of institutions to face crises. And in comparison to some popular accounts, we found that preppers are often more concerned with mundane failures of the system (electricity cuts or pension losses) than the more spectacular apocalyptic aesthetics associated with prepping culture (such as environmental collapse or nuclear fallout).

They know they are ridiculed and stigmatised – a consequence of the American stereotype. Their online forums are filled with warnings: if you are a journalist, keep out. They are concerned with “op-sec” (operational security): concerns about personal privacy and the strategic advantage of withholding information about the location of resources in the eventuality that any “prep” may be put into practice. Again, such practices are framed within the narrative of common sense. Common sense is claimed in order to reject its opposite: paranoia.

Bin bags and radios

Preppers consider people who don’t prepare – the rest of society – as shockingly ignorant of the world around them. It is “we” who are abnormal. The dependent civilian is variously viewed as oblivious, dilettantish, complacent and trusting, while the prepper is watchful. Preparation is seen as a type of foresight that is missing in ordinary consumers.

A prepper looks at the world differently: far from a smart, interconnected and highly functioning infrastructure subject to the rule of law, the city is a jungle where the lone prepper negotiates manifold dangers. This is why they carry “preps” with them at all times – from fire-making equipment to bin bags to radios – in their pantries, in their cars, on their person. One prepper told us:

I always carry two or three bin bags so I can make shelter no matter where I go. One of the bin bags can be used to make a roof and I could fill the others with leaves to create comfort and heat.

Commercial heaven or chaotic hell? TierneyMJ/

Preppers pour scorn on consumer-centric technological interfaces such as social media and invest their time in pre-digital technologies like primitive fire and farming. Again, common sense is the most valued currency.

So what will happen to the rest of us? The prepper has trained for a world without a market system and considered what will happen when the dependent civilian comes calling. In common scenarios (such as electricity cuts, council water repairs) preppers tend to depict themselves as generous, helping out dependant neighbours despite the mocking it still often brings.

But in the ashes of a more serious consumer collapse, our conversations revealed an implicit subtext that when the **** does hit the fan, it will be everyone for themselves. And ultimately, it will be your neighbour that presents the biggest threat. Again, this is the common sense reality for preppers living in a world where the majority of people are seen as under-prepared, for whatever disaster we may befall.

Prepper lessons

When we think about escaping the constraints of the capitalistic dominant economy we are often met with utopian connotations of a “sustainable society” that places emphasis on community, cooperation, sharing and caring. The preppers offer a different take on what a “sustainable” world looks like, one grounded in ideologies of protectionism and self-preservation.

This echoes the 17th-century philosopher Thomas Hobbes’s famous suggestion that in the absence of institutions humans would become trapped in a cycle of violence – “a warre of all against all”. In other words, community is dangerous and consumption requires bunkering down.

Such individualistic “prepper” modes of thinking are likely to germinate further within society, particularly in the face of the current climate crisis. And this must be considered when we think of the practicalities of alternative systems to the neoliberal marketplace.

Title: Re: History of Byzantium and the Preppers story
Post by: AGelbert on June 27, 2019, 12:31:04 pm
I have been listening to a podcast series on the History of Byzantium, which traces the continuation of the Roman Empire from the fall of Rome through the Turkish conquest of Constantinople in 1453. Armenia plays a huge role in the stability of the Empire and contributes some Emperors, in fact.

I am convinced that George R.R. Martin was influenced in his writing of A Song of Fire and ice vey the history of the Eastern Empire.

I wasn't aware of that. Thank you for sharing. It seems things didn't work out for Armenia the way the Apostles Bartholomew and Thaddeus hoped. But then again, the ( prince of this world always keeps doing what he does everywhere.

Excellent video about the preppers. 👍 Preparing for short term lack of civilization is prudent. However, I agree with the lady that prepping for total collapse is futile.

Hobbes was an atheist. He basically thought all humans operate under "situational" ethics. IOW, he thought altruistic, caring behavior within a society vanishes under lack of resources collapse. Any, even brief, study of allegedly "uncivilized" indigenous tribes proves that this so-called "war of all against all", which alllegedly ensues when there are not eough resources to go around AND no big dog central authority to keep everyone "civilized", is baloney.

Hobbes' world view was exactly like that of a pirate in those days (and Wall Streeters now). He just added a lot of intellectual doubletalk verbiage to it.

Hobbes erroneously believed, like too many in the USA do today, that carrying capacity is all that matters and CARING capacity is a function of carrying capacity.

Actually, the reverse is the true. Hobbes had it exactly backwards. Carrying Capacity is a function of Caring Capacity. Without sufficient Caring Capacity, we all become ( pirates in a war of all against all.
"Technical knowledge of Carrying Capacity will not save us; only a massive increase in Caring Capacity will." -- A. G. Gelbert
Title: Re: History of Byzantium and the Preppers story
Post by: Surly1 on June 28, 2019, 08:12:55 am
I have been listening to a podcast series on the History of Byzantium, which traces the continuation of the Roman Empire from the fall of Rome through the Turkish conquest of Constantinople in 1453. Armenia plays a huge role in the stability of the Empire and contributes some Emperors, in fact.

I am convinced that George R.R. Martin was influenced in his writing of A Song of Fire and ice vey the history of the Eastern Empire.

I wasn't aware of that. Thank you for sharing. It seems things didn't work out for Armenia the way the Apostles Bartholomew and Thaddeus hoped. But then again, the ( prince of this world always keeps doing what he does everywhere.

Excellent video about the preppers. 👍 Preparing for short term lack of civilization is prudent. However, I agree with the lady that prepping for total collapse is futile.

Hobbes was an atheist. He basically thought all humans operate under "situational" ethics. IOW, he thought altruistic, caring behavior within a society vanishes under lack of resources collapse. Any, even brief, study of allegedly "uncivilized" indigenous tribes proves that this so-called "war of all against all", which alllegedly ensues when there are not eough resources to go around AND no big dog central authority to keep everyone "civilized", is baloney.

Hobbes' world view was exactly like that of a pirate in those days (and Wall Streeters now). He just added a lot of intellectual doubletalk verbiage to it.

Hobbes erroneously believed, like too many in the USA do today, that carrying capacity is all that matters and CARING capacity is a function of carrying capacity.

Actually, the reverse is the true. Hobbes had it exactly backwards. Carrying Capacity is a function of Caring Capacity. Without sufficient Caring Capacity, we all become ( pirates in a war of all against all.
"Technical knowledge of Carrying Capacity will not save us; only a massive increase in Caring Capacity will." -- A. G. Gelbert

You will not be surprised to know the I agree with you.

I have had a couple of instances in my life to put that to the test. For example, during hurricane Isabel, an otherwise inconsequential storm that passed right over Hampton Roads and uprooted many trees. We lived without power for several weeks. What I found was that neighbors pooled their resources together and shared what they had with one another to get by. Those were days when you could imagine reverting to a 16th-century lifestyle. When the sun went down, it got dark, unless you lit a candle. Entertainments consisted of playing musical instruments, singing, or cards by candlelight. or an early bedtime (my favorite.)

Perhaps people were sharing, kind, and civil because they knew the power would eventually come back on. Somehow I doubt it. But I could be wrong; I often am. But I do believe the communitarian spirit is hardwired into all of us, and only the sociopaths (read: capitalists) make it go awry.
Title: Re: the communitarian spirit is hardwired into all of us
Post by: AGelbert on June 28, 2019, 01:19:31 pm
I have had a couple of instances in my life to put that to the test. For example, during hurricane Isabel, an otherwise inconsequential storm that passed right over Hampton Roads and uprooted many trees. We lived without power for several weeks. What I found was that neighbors pooled their resources together and shared what they had with one another to get by. Those were days when you could imagine reverting to a 16th-century lifestyle. When the sun went down, it got dark, unless you lit a candle. Entertainments consisted of playing musical instruments, singing, or cards by candlelight. or an early bedtime (my favorite.)

Perhaps people were sharing, kind, and civil because they knew the power would eventually come back on. Somehow I doubt it. But I could be wrong; I often am. But I do believe the communitarian spirit is hardwired into all of us, and only the sociopaths (read: capitalists) make it go awry.

You are right. (

I have observed that even humans who are mentally deficient have a God given knowledge of the difference between right and wrong. Although mentally retarded people have engaged in acts of brutality, they are extemporaneous acts similar to that of a two year old unreasonably lashing out. Treating the mentally deficient with kindness and firm supervison prevents these children in an adult body from harming themselves or others. They are not evil in any way, shape, or form. God's love of children is unconditional.

Mens rea mental activity is exclusively the unethical habit of those with above average intelligence. While it is true that being smart does not necessarily breed unethical behavior, being dumb as a post rarely does. Sure, low to average intelligence people are used as soldiers to fight wars on behalf of the highly intelligent sociopaths among us. But, that is the mens rea result of the clever, and truly evil, twisting of the communitarian spirit in these soldiers, who are lied into killing people "for God and Country".

The Lord Jesus Christ was not whistling Dixie when he referred to humans as sheep lacking a shepherd. IMHO, there is some very important nuance in that statement. That is, the sheep know what doing the right thing is because the knowledge of what is right and what is wrong is already written in their spirit. If we sheep have leaders in our community that guide us improperly, we will embrace doing the wrong thing. In order for we sheep to choose evil as a daily habit, our communitarian spirit must be corrupted in Orwellian fashion.

The communitarian spirit is the firm spiritual knowledge that constant concern and action on behalf of our neighbor's health and well being is the right way to live.

The corollary to that, which is also part of the God given knowledge hardwired in all of us, is that constant concern and action on behalf of the self is detrimental to the self, both in this life and in the next. The utilitarian "greed is good" types, who studiously deny any inconvenient belief in the hereafter or the knowledge that our spirit and consciousness goes on to a reckoning after our body dies, know that, but they choose evil over good because they worship the prince of this world, even if they claim to be "atheists".

The greatest con ever perpetrated on humanity is the Satanic ploy that worship of the self is not worship of the prince of this world. Today, it takes the form of CAPITALISM, but it's been around since the prince of this world has been around.

When the lights go out, I will share what I have until there ain't no more. If no one will help me and my wife out in the event that we lack transportation, food and water, we will not attempt to take anything from anybody. We will fast and hope. I have read that after the first three days of fasting, the hunger goes.

The important thing is to always do the right thing, no matter how difficult that is to do. May the Lord give us the strength to do the right thing until the end, AMEN.
Post by: Surly1 on July 19, 2019, 07:18:28 am


Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives quietly passed a bill requiring the Inspector General of the Department of Defense (DoD) to conduct a review into whether the Pentagon experimented with ticks and other blood-sucking insects for use as biological weapons between 1950 and 1975.

If the Inspector General finds that such experiments occurred, then, according to the bill, they must provide the House and Senate Armed Services committees with a report on the scope of the research and "whether any ticks or insects used in such experiments were released outside of any laboratory by accident or experiment design," potentially leading to the spread of diseases such as Lyme.

The amendment was put forward by Rep. Chris Smith, a Republican from New Jersey, who was "inspired" by several books and articles claiming that the U.S. government had conducted research at facilities such as Fort Detrick, Maryland, and Plum Island, New York, for this purpose....

more (
Title: (Americans Are in Denial That) Fascists Took Over America
Post by: Surly1 on July 19, 2019, 07:51:22 am

There are Three Phases of Fascist Collapse. America’s Way Past One. It’s Entering Phase Three.

umair haque

Here’s a tiny question: what stage of collapse is America in? Do you think — like many Americans — that “things aren’t that bad”? Or are you ashamed, furious, and disgusted? How should one feel, anyways — what’s the objective reality of collapse?

First, extremists like fascists capture institutions — they gain power over them. That’s phase one of any proper collapse. Then, they subvert them — they pack them with cronies, flunkies, admirers, and sycophants. That’s phase two. But in phase three, the institutions of a democracy are perverted. They are turned from instruments of freedom, justice, and equality, to weapons of subjugation, repression, fear, and violence.

(Think of how the Nazis used the law itself to oppress and then exterminate Jews. Phase three. But that was after phase two — stacking the branches of government with good Nazis. And phase one — seizing power. That is how social collapses tend to go.)

So where is America on my little scale, or sequence, of collapse? Should we be relieved things aren’t worse — or horrified at how bad they really are? American collapse is further along than you probably think, my friends. It is well past phase one. Even phase two. In fact, phase three — the last one — is beginning. The basic institutions of democracy, having been captured, and then subverted, are now being reshaped and restructured, as weapons of mass subjugation, repression, and violence.

Consider three events that happened just in the last week.

This morning, the Prez told several members of Congress to “go back” to their countries. Now, of course, they’re as American as…the Prez. This tirade was described in the press as “racist.” But the truth is that it is much more than just racist. Racist would be the President demeaning minorities in general. But to attack members of the opposition in this way isn’t just racist. So what is it?

Well, let’s specify the nature of the attack. It says this: Impostors walk among us. The opposition members aren’t “real” Americans. Someone that isn’t real is an impostor, pretending to be a thing they are not. It’s a slur that every minority’s heard countless times. But that very slur is very different when it comes from the head of a state — against members of an opposition. In that case, it isn’t merely obnoxious, foolish, or vulgar.

It is institutional dehumanization. “You aren’t really one of us! You are alive, foreign, other. You are something lesser, beneath us. The true and real volk of the homeland. You are subhuman.” None of that is said explicitly, of course. It doesn’t need to be. “Go back home!”, to another citizen, in a democracy of equals, is a violation of personhood, its negation, absence, removal. It says that some of us are superior, because we are real, and others of us are inferior, because we are not.

But that is the very logic of supremacy. Why is it that some of us are real people, and others of us only impostors? The only answer is that it is in the blood. The real ones among us are authentic by virtue of our bloodlines, our genetic inheritance. Impostors walk among us — the ones pretending to be real, just like us, but they are not. Their blood says so.

So. What do we call people — especially in an official capacity — who institutionally dehumanize others as impostors? They are called fascists, my friends. But these fascists apparently run the country now. They are using the office of the Presidency itself to institutionally dehumanize the opposition. That’s not just the textbook definition of fascist-authoritarianism: it’s phase three, the perversion of democracy, using the institutions of governance as instruments of violence, as weapons.

Let me come to my second event. This one barely seems to have made the news. Did you know that “agents” were checking IDs on the…NYC subway? Does that chill you a little? It should. But if it doesn’t, let me put it another way, so that it does. Papers were being checked on public transport.

Get the context now? What does it say when papers are being checked on public transport? Well, the “agents” must be looking for a specific kind of person. Because in the absence of war or some kind of genuine emergency, the only point to checking papers can be to identify members of an unwanted group. Not, for example, to manhunt individuals.

What kinds of societies check papers on public transport? Certainly not constitutional democracies. Because doing so violates basic constitutional principles. Freedom of assembly, expression, movement, privacy. Checking papers in any public space isn’t just a “violation of civil liberties”, as America’s anodyne public discourse might put it: it’s a violation of the most basic principles of democracy.

That is because if I imagine my papers are going to be checked, I will alter everything about my life, probably. I will avoid those places. I will avoid associating with certain people. I will watch what I say. I will limit what I think. Society will soon come to be defined by an atmosphere of fear, of grim and stone-eyed complicity, of looking the other way.

The “chilling effects” — another American phrase — of paper-checking are vast. Why, though? Because people are not just numbers and categories and files, my friends. In a democracy, people, first, are human beings, with inalienable rights. They are equals in regards to those rights. But when a society begins to check papers, in broad daylight — and it barely even makes the news — it tells us something crucial, vital, and bleak. That society is dehumanizing itself. It is reducing people to objects, numbers, things to control and subjugate and prey upon.

Checking papers, of course, demands the creation of new government agencies who can do the “job.” Later, they will say things like: “we were just following orders!” Of course, of course. But that doesn’t change the point. When a society begins checking papers in broad daylight, it tells us something very, very important, and very, very bleak. It takes Gestapos to check papers, my friends. And that is precisely what America is building now.

That brings me to my third event. The VP recently did something very much like a victory tour of America’s concentration camps. A press junket. He showed them off and flaunted them. “Tough!”, he said, as if to show off just how manly and strong the regime is. Of course, that’s a celebration of violence and cruelty — but that’s so normal in America it’s almost besides the point.

What does it say when a VP is giving tours of concentration camps? Let me remind you that once, not so long ago, concentration camp tours were given to eager journalists. They were shown canteens and cafeterias and gymnasiums and schools. “Why, see”, cried the Nazis. “Look how well we are treating the Jews! Like honored guests!” The world was foolish enough to fall for it. But even that is not the point.

When heads of state are giving tours of concentration camps, it’s even more stark evidence of the answer to my question. The institutions of governance haven’t just been captured. Now they are being perverted, commandeered, rebuilt.

Let me make all that crystal clear. What institutions am I talking about? The Presidency is now an office that institutionally dehumanizes the opposition, speaking the language of supremacy openly in public. The Vice-Presidency, meanwhile, is an office that…gives tours of concentration camps. Needless to say, both of these are offices that build networks of such camps. Meanwhile, new “enforcement agencies” have arisen to fill the camps — the Gestapos of American collapse. They check papers in broad daylight — and nobody much notices.

What kind of a society does all these things? I think the answer to that is very clear. One that is turning fascist-authoritarian at light-speed.

Americans are in a kind of deep, stark, denial. They have been for very long, about very many things. The wars they made on the world, they damage they did, and so on. But the denial they are in now is the most dangerous of all. The way that they treated the world — with contempt, with hate, with scorn — has come home. The fascists are treating Americans just the way they treated the world. But Americans deny — enough of them — that there is a fascist collapse happening in America at all.

Even if they worry, even if they’re concerned — they are unable to use the lexicon of history to describe what is happening to America now. Wait — what is it that we say about people who can’t learn from history?

America’s not just in danger of having a fascist collapse. It’s having one. It’s bang in the middle of one. It’s not in the early phases — but in fact, beginning the later ones. The ones where concentration camps rise, and hatred spews from the head of a state, and papers are checked on public transport. How much more obvious could it get? How many more data points do you need? If this isn’t enough…what could be?

Denial, in the face of fascist collapse this obvious? It’s the bad guys’ best friend. It’s up to you to judge for yourself where you stand on that scale. But don’t kid yourself anymore. When the President is openly dehumanizing the opposition, when the VP’s giving happy tours of the concentration camps, when the NYC subway is a place where papers are checked…my friends, your country is ruled by fascists. The only question is when they will come for you, too.

July 2019

Title: (Americans Are in Denial That) Fascists Took Over America
Post by: AGelbert on July 19, 2019, 12:50:14 pm
(Americans Are in Denial That) Fascists Took Over America (

The only question is when they will come for you, too.

Yep. Those weaponized ticks the Pentagon let loose come to mind. I've never met a tick that cared what color or ethnicity you are. 8)
Title: Do Many Shipping Containers Get Lost at Sea?
Post by: AGelbert on July 21, 2019, 04:59:20 pm

Do Many Shipping Containers Get Lost at Sea? ??? (

Anyone who's ever gone on an ocean cruise has probably seen some amazing things, like breaching whales and incredible sunsets. Cruise passengers probably won't have seen any lost shipping containers -- but it's not for a lack of them. According to the World Shipping Council, international shipping companies accidentally drop hundreds of containers into the ocean every year. As a percentage of all maritime cargo, though, the number of lost containers is very small, considering that cargo ships transport approximately 130 million containers worth around $4 trillion USD each year. The World Shipping Council estimated that between 2014 and 2016, the average number of containers lost at sea every year was 1,390, with a majority of the losses due to catastrophic events, such as structural failures and collisions.

Shipping on the high seas:

•  Of the approximately 1.5 million employees in ocean shipping, less than 2 percent are women.

•  On average, pirates commandeer two ocean freighters every day.  :o

•  The largest container ship ever built is the OOCL Hong Kong, which can transport more than 21,000 containers.

Agelbert NOTE: Catastrophic events at sea are mostly a function of 🌊 rough seas. It will get worse.

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity: PART 1 of 3 (
Title: Iowa Neo-Nazi Arrested for Threats to ‘Slaughter’ Jews: Prosecutors
Post by: Surly1 on July 25, 2019, 10:24:52 am
No, he's not "antifa" either. Just another example of home-grown white supremacist hate mongers the the permanent right-wing victim lobby ardently denies. Which is way they so furiously attempt to change the subject.

Iowa Neo-Nazi Arrested for Threats to ‘Slaughter’ Jews: Prosecutors
An Iowa neo-Nazi threatened a Jewish group with disturbing violence over a YouTube video he disliked, prosecutors say.

Kelly Weill
An Iowa neo-Nazi has been arrested for allegedly threatening to “slaughter” Jews in messages to a Jewish organization, prosecutors say.

Garrett Kelsey, 31, allegedly left phone and email messages with a New York-based Jewish organization, sometimes threatening violence if they did not remove a YouTube video he disliked. Kelsey’s social media was filled with neo-Nazi references, as well as racist, anti-Semitic, and anti-Muslim memes.

Kelsey’s alleged campaign against the Jewish organization began with a video about neo-Nazis. The Jewish organization had made a video about a Scandinavian fascist movement, likely the Nordic Resistance Movement, which has been involved in violent attacks for years.

Kelsey took offense at the video, prosecutors say. He practiced Asatru, a pagan faith that is not inherently hateful, but which has a documented following among white supremacists. On May 23, he allegedly used an email with an Asatru reference to threaten violence against the Jewish group if they did not “remove this video and offer an apology to the Asatru community.”

Asatru draws on some Scandinavian roots, but a video about Scandinavian neo-Nazis is not an attack on Asatru. Nevertheless, Kelsey allegedly made more graphic threats over the phone. He called the organization, spoke to an employee, then called back and left a threatening message with the employee’s name, according to a criminal complaint.

“My people have **** slaughtered your **** people and we will do it again,” he allegedly said. “And right now, you are giving us an incentive to do that.”

Kelsey also allegedly made threats against local anti-fascists.

“I think you better second guess opening your little queer club here in Iowa,” he allegedly wrote on an Iowa anti-fascist Facebook page in May, according to the complaint. “If I ever see any of you **** sucking commie fascist snowflakes, I’m gonna bash your skulls in without warning! White is might!! 1488!! Hail Odin! Hail Asatru!!” (“1488” is shorthand for a white supremacist slogan and “heil Hitler.”)

The anti-fascist group said he left other threats on their page. “The day is coming where these scumbags are finally going to be recognized by our government as the lousy terrorists they are!” read one post, which the group shared with The Daily Beast. “We will kill Antifa for fun! Antifa are just a bunch of degenerates!”

Calling anti-fascists “terrorists” and appealing on the government to criminalize anti-fascism is a popular meme on the far right. Earlier this month, Republican Senators Ted Cruz and Bill Cassidy introduced a bill aimed at designating anti-fascists a “domestic terrorist organization,” despite anti-fascism not constituting an official organization.

Though he accused anti-Nazis of being terrorists, Kelsey’s internet presence was heavy with content that glorified violence. At the time of the criminal complaint, Kelsey’s Facebook header image was a picture of Jews being transferred to a Nazi concentration camp. His profile picture was a meme of a cartoon frog in a clown costume called Honkler (a play on “Hitler”).

Kelsey also maintained presences on extremist-friendly social media sites Gab, Minds, and Bitchute. His profile picture on Gab and Minds was a Sonnenrad, a symbol popular with neo-Nazis. On Minds he encouraged people to join openly Nazi communities, and made repeated attacks on immigrants, Jews, and Muslims.
Title: I have seen that look every now and then here in Vermont.
Post by: AGelbert on July 25, 2019, 01:37:23 pm
No, he's not "antifa" either. Just another example of home-grown white supremacist hate mongers the permanent right-wing victim lobby ardently denies. Which is way they so furiously attempt to change the subject.

Iowa Neo-Nazi Arrested for Threats to ‘Slaughter’ Jews: Prosecutors
An Iowa neo-Nazi threatened a Jewish group with disturbing violence over a YouTube video he disliked, prosecutors say.

Calling anti-fascists “terrorists” and appealing on the government to criminalize anti-fascism is a popular meme on the far right. Earlier this month, Republican Senators ( Ted Cruz  and ( Bill Cassidy introduced a bill aimed at designating anti-fascists a “domestic terrorist organization,” despite anti-fascism not constituting an official organization.

Kelsey also maintained presences on extremist-friendly social media sites Gab, Minds, and Bitchute. His profile picture on Gab and Minds was a Sonnenrad, a symbol popular with neo-Nazis. On Minds he encouraged people to join openly Nazi communities, and made repeated attacks on immigrants, Jews, and Muslims.


I have seen that look every now and then here in Vermont. It was directed at me. It was from complete strangers I had never conversed with and never met before. It is possible that it is because I am ugly and my momma dresses me funny, but I rather doubt it. I do what I can to avoid violence. So, in these situations, I take on a puzzled (i.e. ( look, then look away and walk away.
Title: Re: I have seen that look every now and then here in Vermont.
Post by: Surly1 on July 25, 2019, 03:36:18 pm

I have seen that look every now and then here in Vermont. It was directed at me. It was from complete strangers I had never conversed with and never met before. It is possible that it is because I am ugly and my momma dresses me funny, but I rather doubt it. I do what I can to avoid violence. So, in these situations, I take on a puzzled look, then look away and walk away.

The only thing about unreconstructed racists is that they easily self-identify, as you illustrate. The best way to win a fight is to avoid it.
Title: Siberian Kitty 🐱 Ryzhik's Heartwarming Story
Post by: AGelbert on July 26, 2019, 05:17:13 pm
Ryzhik the Siberian 🐈 cat who refuses to be defeated by frostbite (

By The Siberian Times reporter 09 June 2019

The pet lost all four paws in January in -40C cold in Tomsk but video shows him walking again with artificial titanium limbs.

Ryzhik 🐈 (meaning Redhead or Ginger) was found with all paws so badly frostbitten and with gangrene developing so fast, that there was no other option but amputation.

Not long ago this was a common cause of pets being put down in the harsh winters. :(

Luckily Ryzhik got himself a new owner who had other plans.  (

The cat was taken to a clinic in Novosibirsk, which specialises in implanting artificial limbs.

Computer tomography and 3D modelling were used to manufacture the most comfortable and suitable artificial limbs for the cat.  Pictures: Vesti Rossiya

Now Ryzhik is believed to be the only cat in Russia with four functioning artificial paws.

Indeed surgeon Sergey Gorshkov said: ‘He is definitely the first cat in the world who experienced such surgeries.

‘The limbs have fully connected with the skin and bone. The part of the limb that goes inside the body is spongy, the bone tissue grows inside it.

‘We achieved a good result.

‘We have secured the function of the limb, although part of it has been removed.’

Agelbert COMMENT: Brave Kitty Ryzhik, may you live long and prosper! (
Title: Minutes Before El Paso Killing, Hate-Filled Manifesto Appears Online
Post by: Surly1 on August 04, 2019, 06:44:04 am
Minutes Before El Paso Killing, Hate-Filled Manifesto Appears Online


By Tim Arango, Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs and Katie Benner
Aug. 3, 2019

Nineteen minutes before the first 911 call alerted the authorities to a mass shooting at a Walmart in El Paso, Tex., a hate-filled, anti-immigrant manifesto appeared online.

It spoke of a “Hispanic invasion of Texas.” It detailed a plan to separate America into territories by race. It warned that white people were being replaced by foreigners.

The authorities were scrutinizing the 2,300-word screed on Saturday and attempting to determine whether it was written by the same man who killed 20 people and injured more than two dozen others near the Mexican border.

Police officers were interviewing the suspect, Patrick Crusius, a 21-year-old white man from Allen, Tex., a roughly 10-hour drive to the Walmart. What brought him to a crowded shopping center in El Paso is one of the many questions on the minds of investigators.

The manifesto that may be linked to Mr. Crusius described an imminent attack and railed against immigrants, saying, “if we can get rid of enough people, then our way of life can be more sustainable.”

From New Zealand to Pittsburgh to a synagogue in Poway, Calif., aggrieved white men over the last several months have turned to mass murder in service of hatred against immigrants, Jews and others they perceive as threats to the white race.

The unsigned manifesto, titled “The Inconvenient Truth,” draws direct inspiration from the mass murder of Muslims at two mosques in New Zealand in March that left 51 people dead. In that attack, the alleged killer published a manifesto online promoting a white supremacist theory called “the great replacement.” The theory has been promoted by a French writer named Renaud Camus, and argues that elites in Europe have been working to replace white Europeans with immigrants from the Middle East and North Africa.

Christchurch has become a rallying cry for extremists the world over. The manifesto potentially linked to the El Paso killings begins, “In general, I support the Christchurch shooter and his manifesto. This attack is a response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas.”

The gunman who opened fire in April at a synagogue in Poway, Calif., near San Diego, posted an anti-Semitic diatribe on 8chan, the same online message board where the El Paso document surfaced. The Poway manifesto echoed the words of the Christchurch suspect, and also drew inspiration from a massacre at a synagogue in Pittsburgh last October. In that mass shooting, the suspect railed against immigrants, Jews and other groups.

The El Paso shooting, if the manifesto is linked to the gunman, potentially underscored the global spread of white supremacist ideology in the age of social media and at a time when immigration in America and elsewhere has become a divisive political topic.

Shortly after the mass shooting Saturday, Mr. Crusius’ LinkedIn and Facebook accounts were shut down. A LinkedIn page that circulated online after the account was closed down appeared to be several years old, and Mr. Crusius seemed to be a lost young man.

He wrote on LinkedIn while in high school, “I’m not really motivated to do anything more than what’s necessary to get by. Working in general sucks, but I guess a career in Software Development suits me well. I spend about 8 hours every day on the computer so that counts toward technology experience I guess.”

The posting concluded: “Pretty much just gonna see what technology careers present themselves to me; go with the wind.”

If the manifesto is conclusively linked to Mr. Crusius, the federal authorities may treat Saturday’s attack as a hate crime or an incident of domestic terrorism.

The F.B.I. has said that more Americans have died in domestic terrorist attacks than international ones since Sept. 11, and that domestic terrorism is increasingly motivated by white supremacist ideology.

Christopher Wray, the director of the F.B.I., told Congress last month that the bureau had made about 100 domestic terrorism arrests in the first three quarters of the year, roughly the same number of international arrests over that time period.

No United States government agency is responsible for designating domestic terrorism organizations, and there is no criminal charge of domestic terrorism. Individuals who are considered domestic terrorists are charged under other existing laws, such as hate crime, gun and conspiracy statutes.

Officials have said that domestic terrorists continue to be radicalized online, where individuals are able to align with other extremists, become inspired and find the resources they need to act.

The investigation is currently being led by the state of Texas, with assistance from the local sheriff’s department, the F.B.I., Border Patrol and others. During a news conference Saturday afternoon, law enforcement officials said that they were exploring potential capital murder charges.

“Not speaking about this particular instance, which is still under investigation, the manifesto narrative is fueled by hate, and it is fueled by racism and bigotry and division,” said Veronica Escobar, the congresswoman who represents El Paso. “El Paso has historically been a very safe community. We’ve been safe for decades. We will continue to be safe.”

She added, “This is someone who came from outside of our community to do us harm.”

Once again on Saturday, America’s epidemic of mass shootings intersected with the divisive issues of race and immigration.

The words of the manifesto, in citing the “great replacement” theory, echo the slogan that was chanted during a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va., in 2017: “Jews will not replace us.”

The writer of the manifesto also suggested that Democrats in the United States have a strategy to gain a permanent majority by embracing the growing Hispanic population, a notion that has gained currency on right-wing radio shows for years.

The manifesto said the gunman planned to use an AK-47-style rifle, which has been frequently used in mass shootings. The four-page document said politicians of both parties were to blame for the United States “rotting from the inside out,” and that “the heavy Hispanic population in Texas will make us a Democrat stronghold.”

The manifesto also railed against automation and embraced an argument familiar in anti-immigrant circles: that immigrants are taking jobs from “natives.”

“My opinions on automation, immigration, and the rest predate Trump and his campaign for president,” the document says.
Title: 8chan Is a Normal Part of Mass Shootings Now
Post by: Surly1 on August 04, 2019, 06:48:01 am
8chan Is a Normal Part of Mass Shootings Now (
Three white-nationalist shooters appear to have posted manifestos on the same troll forum. Here’s how 8chan became a meme-filled refuge for hate.

Law enforcement agencies respond to the shooting at a Walmart near Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso, Texas, on Saturday.


Late Saturday morning, a young white man entered a Walmart in El Paso, Texas, and opened fire with an AK-47-style rifle, killing 20 people and injuring 26 more. Police apprehended the suspected shooter, a 21-year-old man from Allen, Texas. It didn’t take long for internet researchers to find a four-page manifesto posted less than hour before the violence, a document that El Paso’s police chief appeared to later confirm was being examined by officials. The document had been uploaded to the notorious, unmoderated message board 8chan at 10:15 a.m. local time, and it included a request: “Do your part and spread this brothers!”

In the anti-immigrant screed, the author describes plans to perpetrate a mass shooting against the Latino people he believes are invading the United States, the weapons he will use to do it, and his white-nationalist beliefs. Soon after it was first posted on 8chan, the manifesto could be found On 4chan, another message board with scant rules about what people can or cannot share. And not long after that, it was circulating as images on Twitter and Facebook and easily findable in a Google image search. Clearly someone got the author’s message.

The writer of the manifesto said he was inspired by the Mosque shootings in Christchurch, New Zealand—before which the gunman, another young white man, posted a sprawling essayon 8chan as well as a link to a Facebook Live broadcast of the massacre and instructions to share. That video was removed about 45 minutes after the broadcast began, giving his audience ample time to copy the footage. It was posted to Facebook 1.5 million times in the first 24 hours after the shooting.

The involvement of 8chan is becoming a familiar detail in cases of white-supremacist violence. The El Paso shooting appears to be the second one since the Christchurch massacre to draw from that killer’s playbook. About five weeks later, two hours before another young man murdered someone at a synagogue in Poway, California, the suspected shooter also posted a manifesto to 8chan. In it, he detailed his ideological rationale for mass murder and gave instructions to spread his words far and wide. Each of these shootings appeared to have been designed to go viral—a horrific act would catch the world’s attention, and a manifesto would deliver the hate-filled payload.

An anonymous, meme-filled internet backwater, 8chan has long been a place for white supremacists to indoctrinate others—mostly young white men—into bigoted ideologies. It’s difficult to put an exact timestamp on when 8chan and 4chan became prime hangouts for white nationalists and neo-Nazis, but the connections to other online venues of hate are clear.

Before 8chan and 4chan, there was Stormfront, a message board created by Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard Don Black in 1996. For more than a decade Stormfront was the most popular white supremacist website on the web. 4chan, founded in 2003, had become fashionable among the generally left-leaning online activists Anonymous, who were known for launching online trolling campaigns against those they politically disagreed with. There, the /pol/ message board (short for “politically incorrect”) attracted users who enjoyed trolling people with jokes about Nazis and racist tropes. Around 2012, Stormfront users reportedly noticed an opportunity to make 4channers “racially aware,” and that year, a “Redpill instruction pamphlet” to indoctrinate 4chan trolls began circulating on 4chan, according to a report in Rolling Stone. Andrew Anglin, who founded the influential neo-Nazi site the Daily Stormer, once said that 4chan is where he “got into Hitler.”  Anglin later teamed up with Andrew “weev” Auernheimer, an infamous neo-Nazi troll who led vicious doxing campaigns against women, and the two helped to pioneer a meme-ified style of spreading hate that remains popular on 4chan and 8chan and across the fringe-right web today: make lots of jokes about the Holocaust and other genocides, desensitizing people to extreme hate-based violence.

If 4chan’s /pol/ could get pretty bad, 8chan became a destination for the very worst. The board was founded in the U.S. by Fredrick Brennan after 4chan’s owners decided to ban threads about the online harassment campaign Gamergate. While 4chan has a virtually nonexistent moderation policy, it does have rulesagainst posting anyone’s personal information, like home addresses and phone numbers. 8chan doesn’t even have that. Whatever is too gruesome for 4chan finds a home on 8chan. That now includes enthusiasm for a white ethnostate. 8chan, now based in the Philippines, has “less restrictive moderation policies” than almost anywhere else on the internet, which has led it to become a “naturally more transgressional space,” than anywhere else on the internet, according to Benjamin T. Decker, the founder of Memetica, a digital investigations consultancy.

Many people come to the politically incorrect boards of 4chan and 8chan from video-game communities, where players looking to laugh at an abasing joke or chat about violent games without offending anyone can find friends. The forums are rife with in-jokes in which users routinely blur the lines between actually believing in Nazism and laughing about it. After the Poway shooter’s manifesto appeared, posters on 8chan wrote that the killer should try to
“get the high score” and kill a larger number of people than the Chistchurch shooter did.

8chan isn’t only a place where people find community in their hate, but it is where they go when they want to announce mass murder to an online army that can help spread their message. Even when 8chan’s owners do feel compelled to step in—in a rarity, the suspected El Paso shooter’s original thread appears to have been removed—that army will have already gotten to work. The manifesto has been reposted again and again and again. The playbook worked.

Title: Trump 🦀 is as guilty of these ☠️ murders as those that actually pulled the trigger
Post by: AGelbert on August 04, 2019, 02:40:22 pm
8chan isn’t only a place where people find community in their hate, but it is where they go when they want to announce mass murder to an online army that can help spread their message. Even when 8chan’s owners do feel compelled to step in—in a rarity, the suspected El Paso shooter’s original thread appears to have been removed—that army will have already gotten to work. The manifesto has been reposted again and again and again. The playbook worked.

Full Surly postedd article: (

Yes, shooter games and "social" (i.e. anti-social) media cesspools contribute to mass ☠️ murders. However, that has been true since the year 2000 or so. Shutting them all down and banning shooter video games and passing all kinds of laws might slow the frequency of these horrific events down, but would not stop these atrocities.

WHY? Because the root of this problem is an embrace of Social Darwinism by our FASCIST leadership! Trump ( is the hate normalizing trigger person that has fueled the increase in frequency of these mass killings. Trump didn't pull the trigger, but while Trump is, as POTUS, deliberately, methodically and repeatedly fostering EVIL HATRED, he is as guilty of these murders as those that actually did, along with those that will.

Expect a Republican Party TOOL (, true to the Orwellian MO that Republicans are totally into now, to publish an article claiming there is a "positive" side to mass murders. ( Yes, they are THAT BRAZENLY MENDACIOUS. After some "prayers" for those killed, the Republican BULLSHIT ARTIST will calmly explain how "good for society mass murders actually are" because they select out those with the poorest survival skills. Darwin and Hitler would agree. Trump would immediately tweet a link to the article (that he had surreptitiously ordered to be written). This would, of course, provide more "evidence" that Trump is helping, not hurting, America. (

Furthermore, anyone claiming that Trump's leadership "style" contributed to the increase in frequencies of mass murders would be considered a "conspiracy theory peddling potential homeland terrorist". All patriotic Americans should report these potential terrorists to Homeland Security. Heil Trump. 


Title: Declassified CIA Document Reveals Iraq War Had Little Justification
Post by: Surly1 on August 06, 2019, 08:27:57 pm
Declassified CIA Document Reveals Iraq War Had Little Justification
 Recently declassified documents reveal what we all felt was true at the time: that there was little justification for the Iraq war.


The justification for going to war in Iraq thirteen years ago, was based on a 93-page classified document that allegedly contained “specific information” on former Iraqi leader President Saddam Hussein and the weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs he was apparently running.

Now that document has been declassified and it reveals that there was little justification for the Iraq war. reports:

The CIA released a copy of the NIE in 2004 in response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, but redacted virtually all of it, citing a threat to national security. Then last year, John Greenewald, who operates The Black Vault, a clearinghouse for declassified government documents, asked the CIA to take another look at the October 2002 NIE to determine whether any additional portions of it could be declassified.

The agency responded to Greenewald this past January and provided him with a new version of the NIE, which he shared exclusively with VICE News, that restores the majority of the prewar Iraq intelligence that has eluded historians, journalists, and war critics for more than a decade. (Some previously redacted portions of the NIE had previously been disclosed in congressional reports.)

For the first time, the public can now read the hastily drafted CIA document [pdf below] that led Congress to pass a joint resolution authorizing the use of military force in Iraq, a costly war launched March 20, 2003 that was predicated on “disarming” Iraq of its (non-existent) WMD, overthrowing Saddam Hussein, and “freeing” the Iraqi people.

A report issued by the RAND Corporation last December titled “Blinders, Blunders and Wars” said the NIE “contained several qualifiers that were dropped…. As the draft NIE went up the intelligence chain of command, the conclusions were treated increasingly definitively.”

An example of that: According to the newly declassified NIE, the intelligence community concluded that Iraq “probably has renovated a [vaccine] production plant” to manufacture biological weapons “but we are unable to determine whether [biological weapons] agent research has resumed.” The NIE also said Hussein did not have “sufficient material” to manufacture any nuclear weapons. But in an October 7, 2002 speech in Cincinnati, Ohio, then-President George W. Bush simply said Iraq, “possesses and produces chemical and biological weapons” and “the evidence indicates that Iraq is reconstituting its nuclear weapons program.”

One of the most significant parts of the NIE revealed for the first time is the section pertaining to Iraq’s alleged links to al Qaeda. In September 2002, then-Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld claimed the US had “bulletproof” evidence linking Hussein’s regime to the terrorist group.

“We do have solid evidence of the presence in Iraq of al Qaeda members, including some that have been in Baghdad,” Rumsfeld said. “We have what we consider to be very reliable reporting of senior-level contacts going back a decade, and of possible chemical- and biological-agent training.”

But the NIE said its information about a working relationship between al Qaeda and Iraq was based on “sources of varying reliability” — like Iraqi defectors — and it was not at all clear that Hussein had even been aware of a relationship, if in fact there were one.

“As with much of the information on the overall relationship, details on training and support are second-hand,” the NIE said. “The presence of al-Qa’ida militants in Iraq poses many questions. We do not know to what extent Baghdad may be actively complicit in this use of its territory for safehaven and transit.”

The declassified NIE provides details about the sources of some of the suspect intelligence concerning allegations Iraq trained al Qaeda operatives on chemical and biological weapons deployment — sources like War on Terror detainees who were rendered to secret CIA black site prisons, and others who were turned over to foreign intelligence services and tortured. Congress’s later investigation into prewar Iraq intelligence concluded that the intelligence community based its claims about Iraq’s chemical and biological training provided to al Qaeda on a single source.

“Detainee Ibn al-Shaykh al-Libi — who had significant responsibility for training — has told us that Iraq provided unspecified chemical or biological weapons training for two al-Qai’ida members beginning in December 2000,” the NIE says. “He has claimed, however, that Iraq never sent any chemical, biological, or nuclear substances — or any trainers — to al-Qa’ida in Afghanistan.”

Al-Libi was the emir of the Khaldan training camp in Afghanistan, which the Taliban closed prior to 9/11 because al-Libi refused to turn over control to Osama bin Laden.

Last December, the Senate Intelligence Committee released a declassified summary of its so-called Torture Report on the CIA’s “enhanced interrogation” program. A footnote stated that al-Libi, a Libyan national, “reported while in [redacted] custody that Iraq was supporting al-Qa’ida and providing assistance with chemical and biological weapons.”

“Some of this information was cited by Secretary [of State Colin] Powell in his speech to the United Nations, and was used as a justification for the 2003 invasion of Iraq,” the Senate torture report said. “Ibn Shaykh al-Libi recanted the claim after he was rendered to CIA custody on February [redacted] 2003, claiming that he had been tortured by the [redacted], and only told them what he assessed they wanted to hear.”

Al-Libi reportedly committed suicide in a Libyan prison in 2009, about a month after human rights investigators met with him.

The NIE goes on to say that “none of the [redacted] al-Qa’ida members captured during [the Afghanistan war] report having been trained in Iraq or by Iraqi trainers elsewhere, but given al-Qa’ida’s interest over the years in training and expertise from outside sources, we cannot discount reports of such training entirely.”

All told, this is the most damning language in the NIE about Hussein’s links to al Qaeda: “While the Iraqi president “has not endorsed al-Qa’ida’s overall agenda and has been suspicious of Islamist movements in general, apparently he has not been averse to some contacts with the organization.”

The NIE suggests that the CIA had sources within the media to substantiate details about meetings between al Qaeda and top Iraqi government officials held during the 1990s and 2002 — but some were not very reliable. “Several dozen additional direct or indirect meetings are attested to by less reliable clandestine and press sources over the same period,” the NIE says.

The RAND report noted, “The fact that the NIE concluded that there was no operational tie between Saddam and al Qaeda did not offset this alarming assessment.”

The NIE also restores another previously unknown piece of “intelligence”: a suggestion that Iraq was possibly behind the letters laced with anthrax sent to news organizations and senators Tom Daschle and Patrick Leahy a week after the 9/11 attacks. The attacks killed five people and sickened 17 others.

“We have no intelligence information linking Iraq to the fall 2001 attacks in the United States, but Iraq has the capability to produce spores of Bacillus anthracis — the causative agent of anthrax — similar to the dry spores used in the letters,” the NIE said. “The spores found in the Daschle and Leahy letters are highly purified, probably requiring a high level of skill and expertise in working with bacterial spores. Iraqi scientists could have such expertise,” although samples of a biological agent Iraq was known to have used as an anthrax simulant “were not as pure as the anthrax spores in the letters.”

Paul Pillar, a former veteran CIA analyst for the Middle East who was in charge of coordinating the intelligence community’s assessments on Iraq, told VICE news that “the NIE’s bio weapons claims” was based on unreliable sources such as Ahmad Chalabi, the former head of the Iraqi National Congress, an opposition group supported by the US.

“There was an insufficient critical skepticism about some of the source material,” he now says about the unredacted NIE. “I think there should have been agnosticism expressed in the main judgments. It would have been a better paper if it were more carefully drafted in that sort of direction.”

But Pillar, now a visiting professor at Georgetown University, added that the Bush administration had already made the decision to go to war in Iraq, so the NIE “didn’t influence [their] decision.” Pillar added that he was told by congressional aides that only a half-dozen senators and a few House members read past the NIE’s five-page summary.

David Kay, a former Iraq weapons inspector who also headed the Iraq Survey Group, told Frontline that the intelligence community did a “poor job” on the NIE, “probably the worst of the modern NIE’s, partly explained by the pressure, but more importantly explained by the lack of information they had. And it was trying to drive towards a policy conclusion where the information just simply didn’t support it.”

The most controversial part of the NIE, which has been picked apart hundreds of times over the past decade and has been thoroughly debunked, pertained to a section about Iraq’s attempts to acquire aluminum tubes. The Bush administration claimed that this was evidence that Iraq was pursuing a nuclear weapon.

National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice stated at the time on CNN that the tubes “are only really suited for nuclear weapons programs, centrifuge programs,” and that “we don’t want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud.”

The version of the NIE released in 2004 redacted the aluminum tubes section in its entirety. But the newly declassified assessment unredacts a majority of it and shows that the intelligence community was unsure why “Saddam is personally interested in the procurement of aluminum tubes.” The US Department of Energy concluded that the dimensions of the aluminum tubes were “consistent with applications to rocket motors” and “this is the more likely end use.”

The CIA’s unclassified summary of the NIE did not contain the Energy Department’s dissent.

“Apart from being influenced by policymakers’ desires, there were several other reasons that the NIE was flawed,” the RAND study concluded. “Evidence on mobile biological labs, uranium ore purchases from Niger, and unmanned-aerial-vehicle delivery systems for WMDs all proved to be false. It was produced in a hurry. Human intelligence was scarce and unreliable. While many pieces of evidence were questionable, the magnitude of the questionable evidence had the effect of making the NIE more convincing and ominous. The basic case that Saddam had WMDs seemed more plausible to analysts than the alternative case that he had destroyed them. And analysts knew that Saddam had a history of deception, so evidence against Saddam’s possession of WMDs was often seen as deception.”

According to the latest figures compiled by Iraq Body Count, to date more than 200,000 Iraqi civilians have been killed, although other sources say the casualties are twice as high. More than 4,000 US soldiers have been killed in Iraq, and tens of thousands more have been injured and maimed. The war has cost US taxpayers more than $800 billion.

In an interview with VICE founder Shane Smith, Obama said the rise of the Islamic State was a direct result of the disastrous invasion.

“ISIL is a direct outgrowth of al Qaeda in Iraq that grew out of our invasion,” Obama said. “Which is an example of unintended consequences. Which is why we should generally aim before we shoot.”

Iraq October 2002 NIE on WMDs (unedacted version)

This article was originally published in 2015 and is frequently updated

Title: Declassified CIA Document Reveals Iraq War was (a WAR CRIME!)
Post by: AGelbert on August 06, 2019, 10:20:44 pm
Declassified CIA Document Reveals Iraq War Had Little Justification (

Excellent post. I wish some of those bastards would go to jail for that, but I'm not holding my breath waiting for prison sentences for these elite scum any time soon. >:( The fact is that they planned and executed the 9/11 False Flag Operation, AND the subsequent continuing coverup, for the purpose of grabbing that murderously profitable MIC "bonanza" of war(s) AND obtaining a huge "war shock" price spike in oil along the way.

I have not forgotten 👹 Cheney's meeting in the spring of 2001 with a bunch of 🦕🦖 Big Oil partners in crime. Congress tried to get the info on that meeting but Cheney refused to give them the details OR his nice Iraq chart showing how the oil sources were going to be ( "partitioned" among his 🦕🦖 pals (after our "New Pearl Harbor" took place in early September, the month Ad agencies always roll out new products). The Hydrocarbon ( Hellspawn always plan ahead. They define MENS REA as "prudent planning".

Those documents, if properly followed up on, lead DIRECTLY to the names of those who did the planning of the 9/11 WTC and Pentagon false flag operations right down to the last detail. So, they probably will stop investigating after they come to the conclusion, that everybody else has reached for well over a decade now, that there was NEVER a Casus belli for the War Crime that 🐵 Bush, 👹 Cheney and 🦍Rumsfeld committed in Iraq.
Title: Re: Declassified CIA Document Reveals Iraq War was (a WAR CRIME!)
Post by: Surly1 on August 07, 2019, 05:56:55 am
Declassified CIA Document Reveals Iraq War Had Little Justification (

Excellent post. I wish some of those bastards would go to jail for that, but I'm not holding my breath waiting for prison sentences for these elite scum any time soon. >:( The fact is that they planned and executed the 9/11 False Flag Operation, AND the subsequent continuing coverup, for the purpose of grabbing that murderously profitable MIC "bonanza" of war(s) AND obtaining a huge "war shock" price spike in oil along the way.

I have not forgotten 👹 Cheney's meeting in the spring of 2001 with a bunch of 🦕🦖 Big Oil partners in crime. Congress tried to get the info on that meeting but Cheney refused to give them the details OR his nice Iraq chart showing how the oil sources were going to be ( "partitioned" among his 🦕🦖 pals (after our "New Pearl Harbor" took place in early September, the month Ad agencies always roll out new products).

You have it correct.

Memory: the superpower of liberals.
Title: Yep, we remember how we got here and, more importantly, WHY we got here.
Post by: AGelbert on August 07, 2019, 12:57:01 pm
Declassified CIA Document Reveals Iraq War Had Little Justification (

Excellent post. I wish some of those bastards would go to jail for that, but I'm not holding my breath waiting for prison sentences for these elite scum any time soon. >:( The fact is that they planned and executed the 9/11 False Flag Operation, AND the subsequent continuing coverup, for the purpose of grabbing that murderously profitable MIC "bonanza" of war(s) AND obtaining a huge "war shock" price spike in oil along the way.

I have not forgotten 👹 Cheney's meeting in the spring of 2001 with a bunch of 🦕🦖 Big Oil partners in crime. Congress tried to get the info on that meeting but Cheney refused to give them the details OR his nice Iraq chart showing how the oil sources were going to be ( "partitioned" among his 🦕🦖 pals (after our "New Pearl Harbor" took place in early September, the month Ad agencies always roll out new products).

You have it correct.

Memory: the superpower of liberals.

Yep, we remember how we got here and, more importantly, WHY we got here.

The thing is, that just about anybody that works in the media knows what I just wrote about. They know the ugly truth but do not have the courage to publlsh it. It is true that they risk being ostracized, losing their jobs AND their lives if they write the truth.

So, they choose a materially comfortable (and spiritually bankrupt) life as liars for hire rather than a shorter lifespan as beacons of truth. 🙃👎

This quote from a long time ago explains WHY we got here:

"There is no such thing, at this date of the world's history, in America, as an independent press. You know it and I know it. There is not one of you who dares to write your honest opinions, and if you did, you know beforehand that it would never appear in print.

I am paid weekly for keeping my honest opinion out of the paper I am connected with. Others of you are paid similar salaries for similar things, and any of you who would be so foolish as to write honest opinions would be out on the streets looking for another job.

If I allowed my honest opinions to appear in one issue of my paper, before twenty-four hours my occupation would be gone. The business of the journalists is to destroy the truth, to lie outright, to pervert, to vilify, to fawn at the feet of mammon, and to sell his country and his race for his daily bread. You know it and I know it, and what folly is this toasting an independent press?

We are the tools and vassals of rich men behind the scenes. We are the jumping jacks, they pull the strings and we dance. Our talents, our possibilities and our lives are all the property of other men. We are intellectual prostitutes."

John Swinton,
preeminent New York journalist, at a press banquet,

Those of us who have studied American History during that period are painfully aware of how the THE ROBBER BARONS WORKED TOGETHER TO KILL FREE PRESS IN THE USA. Their despicable corrupting influence is even more pervasive today.

Beacons of truth in different epochs, William Lloyd Garrison and Milton William Cooper (, have been the voices crying out in the desert.

When William Lloyd Garrison launched his crusading abolitionist newspaper The Liberator in 1831—at a time when Congress refused even to debate the issue of slavery, and three long decades before America would finally confront the sin of human bondage—he acknowledged that his call for the “immediate and complete emancipation of all slaves” was going to upset the polite politics and empty calculations of the elites.

“I am aware that many object to the severity of my language; but is there not cause for severity?” Garrison wrote. “I will be as harsh as truth, and as uncompromising as justice. On this subject, I do not wish to think, or to speak, or write, with moderation. No! No! Tell a man whose house is on fire to give a moderate alarm; tell him to moderately rescue his wife from the hands of the ravisher; tell the mother to gradually extricate her babe from the fire into which it has fallen; but urge me not to use moderation in a cause like the present. I am in earnest—I will not equivocate—I will not excuse—I will not retreat a single inch—AND I WILL BE HEARD.”

There is a way out of this miasma, but I do not see any evidence that those exerting the most influence on human society will take it.

You have taken that path.👍 I have taken that path.( BUT, those of us taking that path are in the extreme minority. (

What it Means to be Responsible - Reflections on Our Responsibility for the Future by Theresa Morris, State University of New York at New Paltz (

Title: Minimum wage doesn't cover the rent anywhere in the U.S.
Post by: Surly1 on August 31, 2019, 12:12:01 pm
Not sure this is news, but...

Minimum wage doesn't cover the rent anywhere in the U.S. (


A minimum-wage worker would have to put in lots of overtime to be able to afford a modest, two-bedroom apartment anywhere in the country. And downsizing to a one-bedroom pad barely helps.

Even with some states hiking pay for those earning the least, there is still nowhere in the country where a person working a full-time minimum wage job can afford to rent a decent two-bedroom apartment, according to an annual report released Wednesday by the National Low Income Housing Coalition.

Even the $15 hourly wage touted by labor activists would not be enough to make housing affordable in the overwhelming majority of states, the coalition found. Nationally, someone would need to make $17.90 an hour to rent a modest one-bedroom or $22.10 an hour to cover a two-bedroom place.

Renters across the country earn an average hourly rate of $16.88, the report estimated, a finding that illustrates how even folks earning more than the minimum wage scramble to pay for housing.

The findings are based on the standard budgeting concept of not spending more than 30 percent of one's income on housing.

The nation's costliest housing is in Hawaii, where one would need to earn $36.13, or roughly $75,000 a year, to be able to rent a modest two-bedroom. The state's minimum wage increased to $10.10 an hour this year.

The cheapest housing in the U.S. can be found in Arkansas, where the minimum wage is $8.50 an hour. Yet one would have to make $13.84 an hour, or roughly $29,000 a year, to afford a two-bedroom apartment.

A one-bedroom is affordable for minimum-wage employees in all of 22 counties in just five states -- Arizona, California, Colorado, Oregon and Washington. Each has a higher minimum wage than the $7.25 federal minimum.

The study bases its definition of "modest" rental housing on a weighted average of fair market rent estimates developed annually by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to calculate the agency's housing assistance to poor people around the country.

The cost of housing has steadily risen along with increased demand for rentals, yet new construction has trended toward the high-end market due to lofty development expenses, the findings said.

"While the housing market may have recovered for many, we are nonetheless experiencing an affordable housing crisis, especially for very low-income families," Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont wrote in the report's preface. "In America today, nearly 11 million families pay more than half of their limited incomes toward rent and utilities. That leaves precious little for other essentials."
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: Surly1 on September 02, 2019, 01:42:44 pm
Title: What will it take to end it?[
Post by: AGelbert on September 02, 2019, 11:04:38 pm
What will it take to end it?

Robert Harrington | 10:45 pm EDT September 1, 2019
Palmer Report » Analysis

When it comes to the hypocrisy of virtue signalling, America has by no means cornered the market. Watching Boris Johnson mince around about “carrying out the will of the people” by implementing Brexit nolens volens, deal or no deal, isn’t merely funny because “the will of the people” hasn’t been consulted lately. It’s also funny because such a consideration for Boris and his kind has been traditionally out of the question.

The “will of the people” is overwhelmingly (85% in fact) that the disgusting practice by the putrid, plummy, inbred aristocracy of that barbarism generously known as fox hunting (fox running down and murdering would be a more likely description), ought to remain banned by law, doesn’t stop Boris and his horde of self-congratulating double-dealers from promising their posh friends to bring it back any day now. Not that they need to. Fox hunting continues unabated despite the ban. So much for the will of the people. It appears that the rich and powerful are above the law here too, no matter how many well-meaning Democrats over there and Labour Party members over here recite the mantra that proclaims otherwise.

But one thing the Brits did get right is gun control. While America is content to suffer September 11th-quantity death tolls every month for decades on end, Britain’s got it sussed, as they say. I know, it’s hard for the average American to believe that cops can actually enforce the law without guns, but enforce it they do. Though they may occasionally find themselves in fear for their lives, just like their well-armed counterparts in America, it is much harder nonetheless for them to murder someone on that account and get away with it, particularly if the person being potentially murdered is black. I don’t know about you but that argument alone makes me happy that cops here don’t carry guns.

But what is a politician to do? The will of the people sometimes isn’t for the objective best (Brexit) and sometimes it is (fox hunting, gun control). I think I have the answer, and it’s one you probably know already, you just don’t have many opportunities to think about it so you’ve never thought about it in a formal sort of way.

I think what we need are politicians who do what’s best for us. I know, that sounds so obvious as to be almost stupidly self-evident. But hear me out. Were I to choose an airline pilot, I would choose her or him with certain specific criteria in mind. Naturally the pilot must fly me comfortably and safely to my destination. They must obey the rules of good piloting. But the pilot doesn’t always do everything I want. For example, in the interest of safety she or he may elect to turn back. I may not want that, but that would be nonetheless in my best interest. They also may take a roundabout route that will get me to my destination much later in order to avoid an intervening storm system. Again, I might not like it, but the pilot is the expert in this.

What we have instead these days, keeping with the airline pilot metaphor, are pilots who don’t take us to our destinations at all. They take us close to where they live, because it’s convenient for them. They assure us that where they live is really the best place after all for everyone, even though it’s not. They give us inadequate bus fare to get us home, and they expect us to be grateful for that. And they become indignant when we are not.

Sometimes they fly dangerously, because it suits them to. They take chances with our lives and ignore safety laws because someone is paying them to get to their destinations quicker, even when that destination isn’t our destination. Sometimes it’s just because they are hungry and want to get home to dinner sooner. But it’s really all about them.

Once in a while, as is the case recently in America, a country will pick an airline pilot, keeping with that analogy, who doesn’t have any idea what an airplane is. We sit in the passenger compartment with our seat belts on waiting for the pilot to take off, while the pilot is in the cockpit trying to eat the plane. After a couple of years he finally realizes the plane isn’t food. So he tries to play golf with it. He makes frequent, baffling announcements over the intercom. Some passengers cheer. Most do not. And so on.

All of which is to say, what we really want are competent leaders, much the same way we want competent airline pilots. We want a smooth ride. We want to reach our destination safely. Our leader should be a man or a woman hired specifically for their special knowledge. They are an intellectual elite who can do something for us that we don’t have a clue about ourselves, and they do it very, very well. They do what they do always with our safety, our comfort and our very best interest as their number one objective.

There has been another mass gun killing. This time in West Texas. Our pilots, the ones currently in charge, and in keeping with the analogy, will invite us to look out the opposite window. We will see the ground and the airport, same as always. A minority of the passengers will be angry because we don’t find the view beautiful. But most of us will remain baffled, confused, frightened, and very much wishing we had a pilot who knew what the hell he was doing.

Title: Boris Johnson lost Tory's majority in House of Commons after Bracknell MP Dr. Philip Lee Defected
Post by: AGelbert on September 03, 2019, 01:27:23 pm
Tue, 09/03/2019 - 10:54 (

"This Conservative Government is aggressively pursuing a damaging Brexit in unprincipled ways. It is putting lives and livelihoods at risk unnecessarily and it is wantonly endangering the integrity of the United Kingdom. More widely, It is undermining our country's economy, democracy and role in the world. It is using political manipulation, bullying and lies. And It is doing these things in a deliberate and considered way.

"That is why today I am joining Jo Swinson and the liberal Democrats.


In Stunning Twist, UK PM 👹 BoJo Loses Parliamentary Majority ( (
Title: Brexit, Boris, and British Parliament Come to a Head After 3 Years
Post by: AGelbert on September 07, 2019, 04:33:41 pm
Brexit, 🎩👹 Boris, and British Parliament Come to a Head After 3 Years

The Real News Network
Published on Sep 4, 2019

Nation Editor DD Guttenplan unpacks the politics behind Brexit and the revolt against Boris Johnson by forces no normally aligned. What could lie ahead and why.

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Category News & Politics
Title: Johnson’s Brexit Mess Now a “Constitutional Crisis”
Post by: AGelbert on September 11, 2019, 09:38:39 pm
🐍 Johnson’s Brexit Mess Now a “Constitutional Crisis”
September 11, 2019

Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson tried to undermine parliament and the Brexit process by temporarily suspending parliament, but now a court has ruled that the suspension is unlawful and a constitutional crisis unfolds, says ( Grace Blakeley
Title: Re: BREXIT
Post by: AGelbert on September 12, 2019, 10:12:09 pm
Scots judges rule parliament suspension unlawful
149,891 views•Published on Sep 11, 2019

Channel 4 News
840K subscribers

Amid what is now a full-blown constitutional crisis, all eyes will be on the Supreme Court next week, when the country’s top judges will decide whether Scotland's Court of Session was correct in ruling that the Prime Minister acted in an "improper" and "unlawful" way in suspending parliament for five weeks. Opposition MPs leapt on the ruling, saying that parliament should be recalled immediately. Former attorney general and Tory rebel Dominic Grieve said that if Boris Johnson had misled the Queen over the reasons for prorogation, then he should resign.

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Category News & Politics
Title: Baby boomers are going to face another problem: The baby bust
Post by: Surly1 on September 19, 2019, 06:39:45 am
Baby boomers are going to face another problem: The baby bust (
As Maine goes, so goes the the rest of the country.

August 27, 2019, 6:42 a.m.
Maine, lobster industry, aging population
With an aging population, who's going to pull in all the lobsters in Maine? (Photo: Christine Norton Photo/Shutterstock)

Maine has the oldest population in the USA, with a median age of 44.6 years, significantly older than the 38.1 median age for the country. According to Jeff Stein in The Washington Post, the state is being "hammered by two slow-moving demographic forces — the growth of the retirement population and a simultaneous decline in young workers."

The disconnect between Maine's aging population and its need for young workers to care for that population is expected to be mirrored in states throughout the country over the coming decade, demographic experts say. And that’s especially true in states with populations with fewer immigrants, who are disproportionately represented in many occupations serving the elderly, statistics show.

Maine recently became the first state to reach the "super-aged" threshold where 20 percent of the population is over 65; the whole country will reach that point in 2030. Health care is in crisis; finding in-home caregivers is almost impossible. Baby boomer kids are run off their feet taking care of their elderly parents. Nursing homes are closing due to lack of staff.

"The U.S. is just starting this journey, and Maine is at the leading edge," said Jess Maurer, executive director of the Maine Council on Aging. "As we are living longer, all the systems that have always worked for us may have to be changed."

No kidding. Bruce Chernof, who wrote a report about this for Congress, says "left unaddressed, this will be catastrophic. We as a country have not wrapped our heads around what it's going to take to pay for long-term care."

The other problem is what we see in Maine, writ large: no young people. Who's going to provide that care? According to The Week,

By 2025, U.S. health-care providers believe they will face a collective shortage of about 500,000 home health aides, 100,000 nursing assistants, and 29,000 nurse practitioners. Some are also bracing for a shortage of up to 122,000 doctors by 2032.

Here comes the Baby Bust

falling fertility rateThose millennial kids aren't having any kids! (Photo: Pew Research Center)

All of this wouldn't be so bad if people still had lots of kids to take care of their parents like they used to, but the birth rate has been declining since the Great Recession in 2008, in what is called the "baby bust." According to the Economist,

Many people lost their jobs or their homes, which hardly put them in a procreative mood. But in the past few years the economy has bounced back—and births continue to drop. America's total fertility rate, which can be thought of as the number of children the average woman will bear, has fallen from 2.12 to 1.77.

The Economist notes that young people like to move to cities where the good jobs are (part of the problem in Maine) and where housing is very expensive and raising kids is very costly. Church attendance is also declining, and "churches tend to be in favour of children — more so than the other places where people hang out on the weekend, such as gyms and bars."

The Wall Street Journal blames spendy, self-centered millennials for not having enough kids. "Americans now expect annual vacations or entertainment that not long ago were available only to the affluent ... The uncomfortable truth may be that the 'two-income trap' is more about maintaining a certain high living standard than it is access to a decent life in America." Or maybe it's all that avocado toast.

The baby bust is, in fact, a huge contributor to the problem of dealing with the baby boom; a shrinking population means a shrinking tax base, at a time when health care costs will be going through the roof. According to the Week, "American spending on health care is expected to rise from about $4 trillion a year to $6 trillion, or 19.4 percent of GDP, by 2027."

mom and caregiverMy late mom and her caregiver at our house for a party. (Photo: Lloyd Alter)

This is a problem in developed countries all over the world, and countries are taking different approaches to the problem. Japan is developing robots to take care of older people; my late mom and all her rich friends in Toronto had flying squads of Filipino caregivers, thanks to a special focused immigration program set up by the Canadian government that lets the caregivers eventually get citizenship once they have worked for a number of years.

Bruce Chernof was right; nobody is wrapping their heads around this problem. We have the baby boomers getting older; we have a baby bust, so nobody will be around to take care of them or generate revenue to pay for their care. We have governments that hate raising taxes and admitting immigrants, when two things we're going to need are lots of money and people, not something anyone wants to talk about these days.

Title: Parliament returns 👍 - what next for Brexit? | Channel 4 News special
Post by: AGelbert on September 25, 2019, 07:29:51 pm
Parliament returns  ;D - what next for Brexit? | Channel 4 News special
66,841 views•Sep 25, 2019

Channel 4 News
858K subscribers

Parliament is sitting again - against the will of the government - after the Supreme Court ruled that Boris Johnson's attempt to suspend parliament was unlawful. (Subscribe:

The Speaker said that the prorogation would be expunged from the record, and instead it would be recorded that the House had been adjourned.



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Category News & Politics
Title: time is fast approaching when these storms with giant waves will no longer be non-routine
Post by: AGelbert on September 28, 2019, 07:25:12 pm

At one point the Bourbon Rhode was reported as being just 60 nautical miles from the eye of Hurricane Lorenzo, a major Category 4 hurricane, according to Bourbon. The vessel is experiencing water ingress in the rear part of the vessel.

By gCaptain on Sep 27, 2019 03:22 pm

Bourbon Offshore Tug Missing After Getting Caught in 🌊 Hurricane Lorenzo

Bourbon Rhode

A rescue operation is underway for a Bourbon tug with fourteen crew members on board after the vessel found itself caught near the eye of Hurricane Lorenzo in the Atlantic Ocean. 

France-based Bourbon Offshore said its offshore tug Bourbon Rhode was in transit approximately 1,200 nautical miles off Martinique island, located in the Caribbean Sea, […]  Read full story... (

September 28, 2019 by Mike Schuler

Update: Bourbon Rhode Sinks in the Atlantic Ocean; Three Rescued

Bourbon Offshore has reported that three crew members from the offshore tug Bourbon Rhode have been rescued from a liferaft in the Atlantic Ocean.

The company confirms that the vessel has sunk.

A search for eleven missing crew members continues.

Weather in the search zone has improved since the vessel was initially reported in distress on Thursday.

“In the context of search operations of tug supply vessel Bourbon Rhode started on September 26, the mobilized rescue teams have recovered a lifeboat with 3 crew members on board, the lifeboat having been identified by a Falcon 50 especially equipped for this type of mission and sent by the French Navy,” Bourbon Offshore said in an update on Saturday. “The 3 crew members are currently taken in charge by the medical support team onboard the commercial vessel, which provided assistance, and are currently placed under medical observation.”

Bourbon Rhode lifeboat Photo courtesy Marine Nationale

Bourbon’s statement continues:

“It has been confirmed that the vessel has sunk. The search continues to be carried out in weather conditions that are improving. All necessary means are implemented by the Cross AG and the French Navy, under the authority of the Prefect representing the State’s maritime authority, namely numerous flyovers carried out by the Falcon 50 over the search zone. Numerous commercial vessels have had their course changed in order to bring assistance, as well as a plane of the U.S. National Hurricane Center.

“The crisis cell put into place by BOURBON works in very close collaboration with the Cross AG and the French Navy. BOURBON’s teams are mobilized to keep the families of the crew members informed and bring them full support in this difficult time.”

The French Navy deployed a Falcon 50 from Dakar, as well the surveillance frigate Ventôse to assist in the search. Multiple commercial vessels are also involved in the search.

France-based Bourbon Offshore reported previously its offshore tug Bourbon Rhode, with a crew of fourteen, was in transit approximately 1,200 nautical miles off Martinique island, located in the Caribbean Sea, when it sent a distress signal that was picked up by French authorities on Thursday morning after the became caught in Hurricane Lorenzo.

At one point the Bourbon Rhode was reported as being just 60 nautical miles from the eye of Lorenzo, which at the time was a major Category 4 hurricane, according to Bourbon.

The vessel was initally reported to be experiencing water ingress in the rear part of the vessel.

The rescue is being coordinated by the Regional Operational Center of Surveillance and Rescue (Cross) of West Indies-Guyana.

Bourbon Rhode is part of Bourbon’s fleet of terminal tugs which provide assistance operations, standby, and support of offshore oil and gas terminals, and is specialized in assisting FPSOs.

Agelbert NOTE: A time of Catastrophic Climate Change is fast approaching when these storms with giant waves will no longer be non-routine.

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity: PART TWO (
Title: Trapped Between a Cruise Ship and a Hard Place 👀
Post by: AGelbert on October 09, 2019, 04:25:52 pm

Watch: Tug Has Trouble with Cruise Ship in San Francisco

October 8, 2019 by Mike Schuler

Check out this incident video showing a tugboat being trapped between the cruise ship Star Princess and a pier in San Francisco. The incident took place on October 2 at San Francisco’s James R. Herman Cruise Terminal at Pier 27.

Not many details are available, including whether or not the tug or pier were damaged in the incident.

One thing is certain, however… that crunching sound was hard to listen to :P
Title: British Parliament Forces Boris Johnson to Request Another Brexit Delay
Post by: AGelbert on October 20, 2019, 06:22:40 pm

British Parliament Forces Boris Johnson ( to Request Another Brexit Delay 👍


In a moment of high drama, with hundreds of thousands of "Remain" demonstrators parading through Central London, British MPs voted by a narrow margin on Saturday to support an amendment mandating that the British Parliament withhold support from Johnson's Brexit deal until specific legislation on how to implement it is in place. A disorderly Brexit would hit Britain's poor the hardest and result in economic disaster for the U.K.

Read the Article → (
Title: Brexit Looms Over Unpredictable UK Elections
Post by: AGelbert on December 06, 2019, 06:56:25 pm
Brexit Looms Over Unpredictable UK Elections
December 6, 2019

National polls show the Tories leading, but conflict over Brexit could still result in a Labour minority government. Nation editor D. D. Guttenplan joins us for an eye-opening discussion about how Brexit, accusations of anti-Semitism, and the 'Green Industrial Revolution' will factor into the vote.
Title: Re: Brexit Looms Over Unpredictable UK Elections
Post by: Surly1 on December 07, 2019, 07:14:03 am
Brexit Looms Over Unpredictable UK Elections
December 6, 2019

Brexit is a right wing coup.
Title: True
Post by: AGelbert on December 07, 2019, 02:25:56 pm
Brexit Looms Over Unpredictable UK Elections
December 6, 2019

Brexit is a right wing coup.

True.. I said as much a long time ago at the Diner, only to hear lots of hemming and hawing from most of the closet right wingers there.
Title: What Is Australia’s Most Dangerous Animal?
Post by: AGelbert on December 08, 2019, 03:24:07 pm
What Is Australia’s Most Dangerous Animal?  ???

You might think that dangerous snakes or insects are the most deadly animals in Australia. The redback spider, for example, is one of the most venomous spiders in the world.

Redback spider (Latrodectus hasseltii) (

And you certainly don’t want to tangle with an eastern brown snake, a seven-foot (2.1-m) slitherer with venom potent enough to easily kill a human.

Eastern Brown Snake (Pseudonaja textilis) · iNaturalist (

But they're certainly not the most deadly examples of Australia's fauna.(  In fact, from 2000 to 2013, the most deadly creatures roaming Australia were horses.   (

Examples of the Australian Waler horse (Equus ferus caballus) 🐴 Giddap'll Git Ya! 🐎 (

A 2017 study by University of Melbourne researchers found that 74 Aussies died during that period after being thrown or trampled by horses. That’s more than all venomous animal-induced fatalities combined.

Watch out 👀, mate:

Twenty-seven deaths occurred after humans were stung by bees and wasps, and another 27 were felled after encounters with snakes. Ticks and ants (five fatalities) and jellyfish (three deaths) made up the rest of the list.

There was pain, however. Around 12,000 Australians were hospitalized after bee or wasp stings -- mostly allergic reactions -- and another 17,000 or so were hospitalized after encounters with spiders and snakes.

There were no reported deaths from spider bites from 2000 to 2013. In fact, Australia's last recorded death from spider venom occurred in 1980. That was back before the funnel web spider anti-venom was developed.

Agelbert NOTE: While the number of human deaths resulting from riding, or otherwise being near horses is correct, the horses are certainly not the problem; the humans are. Spiders, snakes, ticks, ants and jellyfish do what they do whenever the opportunity for something to feed on presents itself. Horses do not. Proof of this in Australia is that the Brumbies (wild Australian horses) aren't the ones doing Australains in; it's the horses they ride on like the Waler horse. If you do not mess with the horses, they will not mess with you. Like I said, giddap'll git ya!
Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: Surly1 on December 08, 2019, 08:19:42 pm
My initial response to the question was that their most dangerous animal is ours as well: homo sapiens.
Title: Yep
Post by: AGelbert on December 08, 2019, 09:15:14 pm
My initial response to the question was that their most dangerous animal is ours as well: homo sapiens.


Title: The blood of poor Americans is now a leading export, bigger than corn or soy
Post by: Surly1 on December 10, 2019, 09:26:30 am
Good to know the FSoA can still make something that other people in the world want to buy. Besides arms, that is.

The blood of poor Americans is now a leading export, bigger than corn or soy (

America is one of the only developed countries in the world that pays people to donate blood, much of it sold abroad (70% of the world's plasma is of US origin), and as commercial blood donations have soared, blood now accounts for 2% of the country's exports -- more than corn or soya.

There's more growth ahead for blood products, expected to "grow radiantly" according to an analyst who was cheering 13% growth between 2016-17.

One study found that the typical blood-seller derives a third of their income from selling blood. Princeton's Kathryn Edin called the commercial blood industry "the lifeblood of the $2 a day poor."

Mintpress's interviews with blood-sellers reveal "a mix of disabled, working poor, homeless, single parents, and college students," who describe a system of arbitrary and predatory payments, which fluxuate wildly from day to day.

Chronic bloodletting produces lethargy and cognitive impairment.

Respondents all agreed that they were indeed being exploited, but in more ways than one. Desperate Americans are allowed to donate twice per week (104 times per year). But losing that much plasma could have serious health consequences, most of which have not been studied Professor Schaefer warns, stressing that more research is necessary. Around 70 percent of donors experience health complications. Donors have a lower protein count in their blood, putting them at greater risk of infections and liver and kidney disorders. Many regulars suffer from near-permanent fatigue and are borderline anemic. All this for an average of $30 per visit. Rachel described the terrible Catch-22 many of the working poor find themselves in:

I got turned away twice – once for being too dehydrated and once for being anemic. Being poor created a shitty paradox where I couldn’t eat, and because I couldn’t eat my iron levels weren’t high enough to allow me to donate. That was a week of a pay cut, money I desperately needed for rent and bills and meds.”

Harvesting the Blood of America's Poor: The Latest Stage of Capitalism [Alan Macleod/Mint Press News]

(via JWZ)

(Image: Nyki m, CC BY)

Title: 😈 A Profitable Business Opportunity
Post by: AGelbert on December 10, 2019, 02:27:54 pm
Good to know the FSoA can still make something that other people in the world want to buy. Besides arms, that is.

The blood of poor Americans is now a leading export, bigger than corn or soy (

( I'm sure "Good Capitalists" everywhere (i.e.  ( ( have found a way to invest in this "profitable business opportunity"...   


Title: The Further Adventures of Florida Man
Post by: Surly1 on December 13, 2019, 07:47:41 am
Florida man died from meth overdose before he was eaten by alligator (
A "methamphetamine intoxication" killed Michael Ford before the reptile tore his body apart.

Authorities are conducting an investigation into the death of a man whose body was found in a canal in Fort Meade, Fla.

Dec. 12, 2019, 4:54 PM EST
A Florida man, found eaten by an alligator this summer, died from a meth overdose before his body was ripped apart by the reptile, according to a medical examiner's findings.

Michael Ford, 45, was found face down in a canal in Fort Meade on June 27 and Polk County Sheriff's investigators theorized he might have drowned before an alligator began eating the man's remains.

A hand and a foot belonging to Ford was found in the beast's stomach.

"It is my opinion that Michael Glenn Ford II died as a result of a methamphetamine intoxication," District Medical Examiner Stephen Nelson wrote in an autopsy report obtained by NBC News on Thursday. "The manner of death is accident."

The report took note of the "traumatic" amputations Ford's body had suffered at his left forearm and right foot. Nelson found that those injuries were likely postmortem.

"The decedent's injuries and amputations lack sufficient associated blood to suggest they were made while alive," according to Nelson's report.

Ford was nu de when he was discovered, but his clothes were not found at his nearby car or at the scene, officials said.

Friends and family of Ford told investigators they hadn't seen him since June 23, authorities said.
Title: The Misery Caused by Plutocratic America 😟
Post by: AGelbert on December 13, 2019, 03:02:26 pm
Florida man died from meth overdose before he was eaten by alligator (

I believe Ford ( was another casualty of the diseases of despair the oligarchs are deliberately and methodically (SEE: Mens Rea) fostering on the masses of what used to be our country. It belongs to the oligarchs now. (

🐊 Alligators just do what they do to eat. Unlike the oligarchs, alligators have no malice.

The oligarchic class of plutocrats that run this country are destroying it. They are destroying it because that is what psychopaths, who became billionaires through grossly unethical wage slave business practices, DO. They have never done anything else, no matter what you have read or where you have read it in some over-edumacated, upper class kowtowing "historical" bullshit about the "power of the wealthy dynasties to direct history".

It takes a while, but plutocratic psychopaths 🎩👹( always end up eating their own seed corn, to their dismay and ultimate demise. Evil is as evil does.
Title: 🐵 Jeremy Corbyn Throws Away UK Election to 😈🎩 Boris Johnson
Post by: AGelbert on December 13, 2019, 06:54:11 pm
🐵 Jeremy Corbyn Throws Away UK Election to 😈🎩 Boris Johnson (w/ Victoria Jones)
856 views•Dec 13, 2019

Thom Hartmann Program
200K subscribers

Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn’s campaign in the UK was awful in the British election. He ignored the wishes of those who voted to Leave the EU, many of whom are Labour supporters.

🔴 Subscribe for more clips like this:

Corbyn’s voters stayed home and others voted for the Brexit party, which split the vote. The result was Conservative Boris Johnson taking a majority in the House of Commons of 80 seats.

Get Brexit Done was the mantra from Boris Johnson and the Conservatives.

Scotland still wants a second referendum for Scottish Independence and the Scottish Nationalist Party, the SNP, won 48 seats from the 59 in the country, which may force Westminster’s hand.

Victoria Jones joined Thom to discuss what happen at the British Election.

🔥 WATCH NEXT: Who Is Boris Johnson and Why Is He British Prime Minister? (w/ Victoria Jones)

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Agelbert RANT: So, the ( Fascists ☠️ won in "jolly old England", eh?    ( 

Well, it looks like that movie we all watched several decades ago (made from the "fictional" dystopia that Orwell portrayed in his book "1984") was quite prophetic. The year in the title was 36 years early, but there is no need to quibble over details.

Here's the trailer from the 2008 remake:

1984 George Orwell Movie Trailer (1984)
Luis E. 3 years ago
It was supposed to be a novel, not a manual

Here's the original movie in full:

Orwell's 1984 (1956) The best one



Title: Re: The Misery Caused by Plutocratic America 😟
Post by: Surly1 on December 14, 2019, 06:52:05 am
Florida man died from meth overdose before he was eaten by alligator (

I believe Ford ( was another casualty of the diseases of despair the oligarchs are deliberately and methodically (SEE: Mens Rea) fostering on the masses of what used to be our country. It belongs to the oligarchs now. (

🐊 Alligators just do what they do to eat. Unlike the oligarchs, alligators have no malice.

The oligarchic class of plutocrats that run this country are destroying it. They are destroying it because that is what psychopaths, who became billionaires through grossly unethical wage slave business practices, DO. They have never done anything else, no matter what you have read or where you have read it in some over-edumacated, upper class kowtowing "historical" bullshit about the "power of the wealthy dynasties to direct history".

It takes a while, but plutocratic psychopaths 🎩👹( always end up eating their own seed corn, to their dismay and ultimate demise. Evil is as evil does.

Quite correct. Everyone involved ran true to form: methheads tweak, oligarchs exploit, and alligators chomp.

The availability of toxic drugs is all part of The Great Culling, the multiple-decade plan to get useless eaters off the books, and to stop consuming resources that God wants to be deployed to serve our betters. We're supposed to be too stupid to see it. Likewise with environmental toxins: if you can cut sperm count and motility in half in each generation, pretty soon you're in Children of Men territory, where reproduction has come to a halt, or The Handmaid's Tale territory, where it is reserved for the Elect.
Title: Cruise Ships have FENDER BENDER! 👀
Post by: AGelbert on December 21, 2019, 11:04:13 pm

Watch: Carnival Cruise Ships Collide in Mexico 👀

December 20, 2019 by Mike Schuler

Two Carnival cruise ships collided in Cozumel, Mexico on Friday, causing damage to both ships.

Video posted online show the stern of the Carnival Glory crash into the bow of the Carnival Legend.

Mexican authorities confirmed the incident took place around 8:30 a.m. local time.

No injuries have been reported.

More video of the incident is below:

“Carnival Glory was maneuvering to dock when it made contact with Carnival Legend which was already alongside,” Carnival said in a statement. “We are assessing the damage but there are no issues that impact the seaworthiness of either ship.”

Carnival Glory just crashed into Carnival Legend and almost crashed into Oasis of the Seas at the Cozumel cruise port. #FoxNews #RoyalCaribbean #CarnivalLegend #CarnivalGlory #OasisoftheSeas

— Matthew Bruin (@BruinMatthew) December 20, 2019

The damage to Carnival Glory is seen after a collision with another cruise ship at Cozumel cruise port, Mexico December 20, 2019 in this image obtained from social media. Jordan Moseley via REUTERS

#carnivalglory 10 year anniversary cruise just crashed. License and insurance please! #carnivalcrash #10yearanniversary #cozumel #oopsie

— Wendy Brewer (@WendyBrew5967) December 20, 2019

So uh yeah, just witnessed a cruise ship crash in Cozumel. #carnivalglory #carnivallegend

— Jordan Moseley (@j_moseley) December 20, 2019
Title: So Trump Employs Undocumented Immigrants at His Properties and Nobody Really Cares?
Post by: Surly1 on January 03, 2020, 08:02:19 am
So Trump Employs Undocumented Immigrants at His Properties and Nobody Really Cares? (
That seems to be the state of affairs, this time after a report on his Virginia winery after some were fired.

By Jack Holmes
JIM WATSONGetty Images

When ICE raided some chicken plants in Mississippi last year, they rounded up nearly 700 undocumented immigrant workers. They did not arrest the managers or corporate executives who systematically employed them. This fits a pattern, according to The New York Times: between March 2018 and 2019, the feds prosecuted 112,000 people for illegal entry or re-entry, but charged just 11 employers for hiring some of these same people.

Before anti-immigrant rhetoric descended into full-on propaganda about crime and MS-13, there was a lot of talk about undocumented immigrants taking jobsfrom American citizens. In Mississippi, citizens did take some of the vacated jobs. (There's also the related charge that undocumented workers drag down wages, which is unproven but at least does not boil down solely to uncut racial grievance.) But the persistent refusal to enact penalties on people who choose to employ undocumented immigrants suggests these are not the most pressing concerns for decision-makers. The people who travel hundreds or thousands of miles to get to the U.S. are desperate for decent work, and feel it's worth the risk of deportation. It's employers who are primed for a change in incentive structure, yet they are rarely, if ever, punished. It's enough to make you think this is not, nor has it never been, about the plight of the American worker. It's a regime where workers can be simultaneously exploited by employers and demonized by political elites, ground up by the great American machine.

As usual, the President of the United States is a flag-bearer for all these most base instincts. It's tempting to see hypocrisy as a quaint relic of the Before Times, a dead concept in the era of post-truth politicking. (We are, after all, in a moment in which the president's allies are casting him as an International Corruption Crusader while he's orchestrating the Great American Heist.) But pointing this out can still serve as a reminder that none of these folks ever cared about this stuff. Donald Trump, you see, has always employed undocumented immigrants—at many of his properties, on many of his construction projects. He has no issue with these people except when it's convenient fodder for a rage spasm to get The Base going. The latest example arrived on the last day of 2019 via the Washington Post.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below

Nearly a year after the Trump Organization pledged to root out undocumented workers at its properties, supervisors at the Trump Winery on Monday summoned at least seven employees and fired them because of their lack of legal immigration status, according to two of the dismissed workers...
Two of the fired workers ... said they thought the company had held off on firing them until after the year’s work was complete, taking advantage of their labor for as long as possible. Both had worked at the winery for more than a decade.

That seems like the whole arrangement in a nutshell. Extract cheap labor from people—in this case, allow them to finish the grape harvest—then discard them as soon as it's convenient to do so. In general, the property relies on immigrant labor from Mexico in the form of seasonal workers who arrive on legal visas, according to the Post, but there are also year-round undocumented workers. They are among some 49 undocumented people the Post alone has spoken with, who worked at 11 different Trump properties across four states. For years now, the president has traveled the country railing against immigrants as violent criminals and imploring people to "Buy American, Hire American," while he profited from undocumented labor in systematic fashion. In July 2018, his Mar-a-Lago property announced it was seeking 61 foreign workers on a legal basis. Hire American for thee, but not for me.

Omar Miranda worked for Trump’s Virginia winery without papers. He was just fired now that the harvest’s finished.

This goes all the way back to the '80s, of course, when Trump had hundreds of undocumented Polish immigrants building Trump Tower. He paid them as little as $4 an hour—and always well below union wage—because that's why people like Donald Trump employ people without papers. He ultimately settled a lawsuit around the workers' treatment. It's fitting that the people who made his flagship project possible would fit the theoretical description of the people he has built a political career smearing as criminals. (In practice, he is referring to brown immigrants.) But it also fits because Trump is merely a particularly garish emblem of the post-Reagan plutocrat class, where greed is good and other people—whether they're undocumented workers or they own a small contracting business—are just marks waiting to get fleeced.

That hustle now extends to the angry and isolated people who show up to his rallies in search of community and solidarity against The Other. They will not mind that he's profited so handsomely off undocumented labor, because it's about the performance of demonstrating who's a Real American with a say in how this country is run. Also, anything he does is excusable on the basis that Democrats do it, too, or anybody who's smart would do it, or everybody does it. Now there's some truth to that: the president is indeed one of a huge number of employers who uses undocumented labor with zero consequences.

Title: 🚩 Strong earthquake rocks Puerto Rico, knocks out power island-wide
Post by: AGelbert on January 07, 2020, 01:11:59 pm

🚩 Strong earthquake rocks Puerto Rico, knocks out power island-wide

...Albert Rodríguez, who is from the southwest town of Guánica, said the tsunami sirens went off before officials canceled the alert. He said there is widespread damage in his neighborhood.

"The road is c r a c k e d in the middle and it lifted up," he said. :o

Agence France Press said people wrote on social media that they were shaken awake by quake's force. One woman tweeted that she'd been "wrenched from sleep" and said, "Everybody is awake & scared all over."

Víctor Huérfano, director of Puerto Rico's Seismic Network, told The Associated Press he doesn't have immediate reports of damage or injuries because communications are down for much of the island. He said officials in the large southern coastal city of Ponce told him there was widespread damage.

My mother-in-law in the San Juan metropolitan area felt it even though the quake was centered almost 50 miles southwest of her location. My brother-in-law and his wife were less than 5 miles from the  epicenter. He told my wife his bed was jerking 3 inches 👀 back and forth during the quake. Needless to say, they didn't sleep a wink after that.

M6.5 Earthquake - Puerto Rico region

Preliminary Report
Magnitude   6.5

Date-Time   7 Jan 2020 04:24:27 near epicenter

Location   17.951N 66.736W
Depth   10 km

          • 5.3 km (3.3 mi) SSW of Tallaboa, Puerto Rico
          • 9.6 km (6.0 mi) SE of Guayanilla, Puerto Rico
          • 13.6 km (8.4 mi) WSW of Ponce, Puerto Rico
          • 15.3 km (9.5 mi) SE of Yauco, Puerto Rico
          • 35.8 km (22.2 mi) ESE of San Germ�n, Puerto Rico

Location Uncertainty   Horizontal: 4.6 km; Vertical 1.8 km
Parameters   Nph = 120; Dmin = 17.0 km; Rmss = 1.01 seconds; Gp = 36°
Version =
Event ID   us 70006vll
Title: The Ominous Earthquake Swarm in Puerto Rico
Post by: AGelbert on January 11, 2020, 02:31:58 pm
"We are shocked, shocked..."

'Approximately 100 percent' of tariff costs have fallen onto Americans (, new research shows (

The US and China plan to sign this month to sign an interim trade agreement, which was reached in October as the two sides sought to defuse tensions. That stalled several planned escalations, but tariffs were kept on thousands of products shipped between the two largest economies.

Yep. The 🦀 Trump Train Wreck continues true to form, as Pulitzer Prize Winner Journalist David Cay Johnston accurately predicted.


🦀 Trump is not simply a stupid, incompetent greedball; Trump is simply an ( Evil Bastard. IOW, Trump is, and has been since he was knee high to a grasshopper, a ( PSYCHOPATH. Puerto Rico still hasn't gotten all the disaster aid money approved from 2017 Hurricane Maria damages. This cruelty is part of the "fun" for Trump. Disaster aid money denied is just the tip of that heinous modus operandi turdburg.

On January 7, 2020, there was a large earthquake in Puerto Rico ( Many houses, culturally important old biuldings and school buildings made of concrete were severely damaged. Trump refused to send a nickel to Puerto Rico, despite this earthquaqe qualifying under the Disaster Declaration protocol for aid money.


Natural structure at Guayanilla beach area before the quake:


After the January 7, 2020 EARTHQUAKE.




Today, January 11, 2020, there was another large earthquake in Puerto Rico resulting in even more severe damages to hundreds of concrete structures, leaving hundreds more homeless. ( Trump is probably cheering.

USGS Puerto Rico area latest Earthquakes  (
Title: Puerto Rico Earthquakes Set Hurricane Recovery Back as 🦀 Trump Denies Aid
Post by: AGelbert on January 14, 2020, 10:02:57 pm
Puerto Rico Earthquakes Set Hurricane Recovery Back as 🦀 Trump Denies Aid  >:(
1,894 views•Jan 14, 2020

The Real News Network
377K subscribers

The U.S. territory was hit with two major earthquakes and hundreds of aftershocks, but local and national politics are still getting in the way of real help for the people of Puerto Rico.

Director/Video Editor: Bababtunde Ogunfolaju
Audio Engineer: Adam Coley
Chase Producer: Genevieve Montinar

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Category News & Politics
Title: Earthquakes in Puerto Rico have changed the landscape. Satellites can see it from space 😲.
Post by: AGelbert on January 18, 2020, 01:23:42 pm

Earthquakes in Puerto Rico have changed the landscape. Satellites can see it from space 😲.

By Mike Wall January 13, 2020

The island's ground has shifted. 😨
This map shows ground changes, or displacement, on the eastern two-thirds of Puerto Rico following the 6.4-magnitude earthquake of Jan. 7, 2020. Areas of displacement are shown in red, with greater displacement by darker shades. The ground shifted up to 5.5 inches (14 centimeters) in a downward and slightly west direction. The orange circles show the cluster of quakes of aftershocks that have hit the island recently. (Image: © NASA/JPL-Caltech, ESA, USGS)

The swarm of earthquakes that have rocked Puerto Rico recently left marks that are visible from space.

About 2,000 quakes have shaken Puerto Rico since late December, with the most powerful a 6.4-magnitude temblor that took place last Tuesday (Jan. 7), centered just off the island's southwest coast. That one, the biggest quake to hit Puerto Rico in a century, killed at least one person, damaged nearly 600 buildings and caused at least $110 million in damage, Reuters reported.

The series of quakes have also altered the lay of Puerto Rico's land, researchers studying imagery captured by the European Space Agency's Copernicus Sentinel-1A satellite determined.

"The scientists found that the greatest displacement from the [satellite's] flyover area occurred west of the city of Ponce (identified by the green star), not far from the quake's offshore epicenter," NASA officials wrote in a statement on Friday (Jan. 10).

"They recorded up to 5.5 inches (14 centimeters) of ground change there," they added. "The ground appeared to shift downward and slightly to the west."

As it commonly does after natural disasters, NASA is making its data and scientific expertise available to aid response and recovery efforts in Puerto Rico.

"Products in the process of being produced include Suomi-NPP-based 'Black Marble' power outage maps, damage maps, and landslide maps," NASA officials wrote in the same statement, referring to the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership satellite, a joint project of NASA, the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the Department of Defense.

"A webpage has also been created on the NASA Disasters Mapping Portal to supply relevant GIS data products," the officials added. "The map contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data processed by ESA and analyzed by scientists at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and earthquake location data from the USGS [United States Geological Survey]."

The USGS is providing regular updates about the Puerto Rico earthquakes, including aftershock forecasts. You can find that information here (

Earth From Space: Amazing Astronaut Photos (

Satellite Photos Help Indonesian Relief Workers Sort Through Earthquake, Tsunami Aftermath (

Liftoff! Europe's Newest 'Sentinel' Satellite Will Study Earth's Seas, Land and Air (

Mike Wall's book about the search for alien life, "Out There" (Grand Central Publishing, 2018; illustrated by Karl Tate), is out now. Follow him on Twitter @michaeldwall. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom or Facebook.

Detailed Satellite Map of Puerto Rico (

Title: That Pro-Gun Rally in Virginia Wasn’t Exactly “Peaceful”
Post by: Surly1 on January 23, 2020, 06:37:09 am
More on the domestic terrorist next door.

That Pro-Gun Rally in Virginia Wasn’t Exactly “Peaceful” (
The threat of violence in Richmond—and arrest of neo-Nazis—sent other groups into hiding.

A swastika made of AR15s
Photo Illustration by Alicia Tatone

On Monday, the streets of Richmond, Virginia, were flooded with a spectacular arsenal of weaponry; some 22,000 people from all over the country had turned up to protest the gun control laws recently passed by the Virginia State Senate. Fearing a repeat of the deadly violence that had gripped the city of Charlottesville, Virginia, three years earlier, governor Ralph Northam declared a state of emergency and barred weapons from the Capitol grounds. Some 6,000 protesters grumblingly abided. But just outside the legions of police barricades, twice that number of people roamed the streets of Richmond bearing a bristling mass of rifles, from AR-15s to massive Barrett sniper rifles. Some wore skull masks; others waved Confederate flags. Members of hate groups like the League of the South and the American Guard, as well as the Proud Boys, mingled openly; some of the latter were wearing patches that said “RWDS”—an acronym for “Right-Wing Death Squad.” Conspiracy theorist Alex Jones gave a speech from a Terradyne battle tank. Adding to the bellicose mood, some attendees paraded with a massive guillotine as a prop, and others held up an effigy strung on a noose, emblazoned with the slogan, “Thus always to tyrants.”

No one was shot—a frankly extraordinary turn of events given the sheer amount of weaponry, the density of the crowd, and the weapons stuffed casually into backpacks or held loosely in the crooks of pale arms. This happy vicissitude of fate led right-wing groups to declare the event a triumph—in the words of fringe-right publications Gateway Pundit and InfoWars, a “peaceful protest.” Mainstream media, too, bought into this analysis: “Pro-gun rally by thousands in Virginia ends peacefully,” was the assessment of the Washington Post. Having made Northam the butt of their rhetorical ire during the rally, conservative groups further condemned his choice to declare a state of emergency in the state’s capital: “Gov. Northam fantasizes he saved Virginia from volatile situation,” crowed a headline at Breitbart.

All this confidence belied the fact that bloodshed—great and heavy and perhaps unprecedented on American soil—was narrowly averted. A federal motion for detention released Tuesday revealed that three members of neo-Naziterror group The Base had planned to attend Monday’s rally in Virginia, kitted out with a home-built, functioning fully-automatic rifle capable of firing several rounds at a time; survival gear; and 1,500 rounds of ammunition. They had planned to open fire into the crowd.

According to the affidavit, one of the men had postulated that there were enough “radicalized” individuals slated to be in Richmond that “all you gotta do is start making things go wrong and Virginia can spiral out to **** full blown civil war.” Their goal, one of the men stated in a video, was to “bring the collapse…If you want the white race to survive, you’re going to have to do your **** part.” The three men were arrested four days before the Richmond rally—held at bay from fulfilling the fantasies they had described of “literally hunting people” in a heavily armed crowd, and setting into motion a chain of violent events that would extend far beyond Richmond.

But even with the Base threat—which was thoroughly ignored by right-wing media—neutralized, it seems myopic at best to describe the Monday event as “peaceful.” There was, it was true, an absence of immediate bloodshed; but what abounded, in that armed and insurrectionist sea of humanity, was the promise that bloodshed might happen at any time, should the will of the mob be thwarted. America’s exceptional tolerance towards armed white gunmen—its brooking of gun-toting militias around the country, and the po-faced seriousness with which the media takes claims of “freedom” when it comes to the right to own weapons of mass slaughter—is entirely restricted to this demographic. Famously, California enacted gun-control legislation prohibiting the open carrying of firearms after a demonstration of armed Black Panthers on the steps of the state house; this swift reactive prohibition was enacted by then-governor Ronald Reagan. The threat of white supremacist violence, despite resulting in multiple shooting massacres against black people, Jews, and Latinos in the last several years, has yet to pierce the national consciousness as the vast and threatening specter it is. Terrorists were intercepted on the way to this rally with the open goal of sparking civil war; the thousands of armed individuals roaming the streets of an American city openly proclaimed their intent not to obey laws they might disagree with. Yet their very whiteness rendered them invisible as a threat: in America, if you are white, you can wear a mask and carry a gun and hang a governor in effigy, and go home quietly at the end of the day, unmolested.

On Monday, itself the sea of armed men kept the city in a kind of artificial stillness—not safety but fear. There is a difference between peace that consists of calm and security, and the false peace of being held under threat. One may be silent when held at gunpoint, but it is not the silence of contentment; it is the silence of mortal terror.

Reporter friends who planned to attend the event went in with a sense of dread, a war-zone fatalism at what might happen. Molly Conger, a Virginia-based leftist activist and citizen journalist, told me that she had cautioned other activists to stay far from the capital and avoid counterprotest. She attended, she told me, because she felt an obligation to document the event, rather than to protest it. “I still think it was the right thing to do,” she told me Tuesday, of her decision to warn other activists away. “I would be distraught if I had the power to keep people away and didn’t and they died in a mass shooting.” At the event, she said, “the crowd was so thick I got knocked in the face and chest with rifle barrels.”

The effects on locals amounted to a sweeping petrification. Due to Monday’s event, Richmond natives closed their businesses downtown—from a 7-11 near the Capitol to a barbershop to the entirety of Virginia Commonwealth University, which suspended all activities for the day, including internships and clinical placements; a university statement made clear that this was in response to the threat, not the federal holiday. NBC reported that some residents of Jackson Ward, a historically black neighborhood in the city, left town entirely for the day—which was Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Due to the state of emergency declared by the governor, legislative business slowed to a crawl; nonessential personnel stayed away from the capitol. So did other political groups that had planned to lobby the legislature on Monday, part of a “Lobby Days” tradition that dates back decades. The Northern Virginia Association for the Deaf had planned to lobby the legislature in support of a bill that would require movie theaters to include captions. Its president, Maryrose Gonzalez, told me they’d stayed home to avoid “getting caught up with the gun people.”

The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, a group that had hosted a Martin Luther King Jr. Day event in Richmond for 28 years, canceled its vigil. “Advocates have faced armed individuals trying to intimidate us each year,” wrote the group’s president, Lori Haas, in a press release. “But this year is different; we have received information that heavily armed white supremacists will be seeking to incite violence, and our organization has decided that the safety of our volunteers, advocates, and staff, many of whom are survivors of gun violence, must be our top priority.”

An annual, long-planned march for the rights of undocumented Virginians, coordinated by New Virginia Majority, an advocacy group for working-class Black and Brown Virginians, was cancelled on the Friday before the gun lobby group. Ibby Han, a representative of the organization Virginia Student Power, which had partnered in the MLK Jr. Day event since 2015, told me that the New Virginia Majority event had expected around 1,000 attendees, many of whom were undocumented. The advocacy event was centered around drivers’ licenses for undocumented immigrants and criminal justice reform. “We are enraged,” the organization wrote, “that we cannot use our voices today at the General Assembly.”

That the zeal of armed activists should crush the rights of others to advocate is neither novel nor unexpected, for all their loudly proclaimed adoration of “freedom.” Americans weary of mass shootings at malls, churches, kindergartens, concerts, nightclubs, abortion clinics, hospitals, universities, and movie theaters—in short, in any place where people gather—have long pointed out that the fear marring any movement through the commons constitutes an infringment of the right to pursue life, liberty, and happiness. We speak the names of towns that have become synonymous with mass shootings like a litany, a kaddish for the dead. This state of affairs is enforced by a minority that is both well-heeled and well-armed. As if to underscore the point, the NRA handed out 1,000 free 30-round magazines to gun owners before the rally. The event on Monday served the only possible purpose thousands of armed men gathering en masse can serve: it served as a threat, in this case against democracy itself.

The Virginia state legislature that rally-goers were eager to call “tyrants” had been elected, democratically, the previous year, in a wave election that shook off a 20-year Republican chokehold on the legislative body of the state. One of the major issues that propelled Democrats to victory was the promise of gun-control legislation, particularly after a mass shooting in Virginia Beach left 12 city residents dead and four others wounded in May 2019. For all their loud objection to “tyranny,” the purpose of the armed crowd was to thwart the will of an electorate that had outvoted them. Virginians’ overall enthusiasm for gun control measures has not waned since last year’s election; a poll conducted in December revealed that Virginia voters strongly support requiring background checks on all gun sales, 86% to 13%, and passing a “red flag” law to remove guns from someone who may harm someone, 73% to 23%. A majority, 54% to 44%, support banning assault-style weapons.

Nonetheless, in advance of Monday’s event, socialist state legislator Lee Carter, the target of a whirlwind of pro-gun conspiracy theories, went into hiding. Carter’s bill had been proposed in a prior legislative session, intended to support teachers’ rights to strike; responding to safety concerns about the potential of police strikes, he had amended it to maintain the status quo prohibiting law enforcement officers from public-sector striking. This was interpreted, in a whirl of YouTube rants and conspiracy chatter, as a bill to punish sheriffs who might refuse to enforce gun-control laws. The death threats were so relentless, he told GEN, that he chose to hide out in an undisclosed safe house on the day of the rally. “I’m not interested in becoming a martyr,” he said. The message was clear enough, it has been clear enough for years: to oppose the monopoly of gun owners over the American commons is to risk death.

The rally was, as one attendee put it to Vice reporter Tess Owen, intended to be“a show of force.” Not the force of popular will, nor the force of solidarity, but the kind of force that comes packed into magazines, with barrels cocked, effigies hung in nooses, white skulls etched on black masks. It was a force that silenced others who sought to raise their voices, and was meant to. Monday was a day of a clenched fist raised in menace; rather than be lulled by the temporary absence of bloodshed, Americans would do better to be poised for the inevitable falling of the blow.

Talia Lavinis a writer based in Brooklyn. Her first book, Culture Warlords, is forthcoming in 2020 from Hachette Books.

This image may contain Weapon, Weaponry, Gun, Human, and Person
Title: “****-Life Syndrome,” Trump Voters, and Clueless Dems
Post by: Surly1 on January 25, 2020, 07:15:58 am
“****-Life Syndrome,” Trump Voters, and Clueless Dems (****-life-syndrome-trump-voters-and-clueless-dems/?fbclid=IwAR18IC2CxVAZVQDIekpzCXjUqDkBdNWvT3x_REXbseoeSqx42-O50Z_X8EA)

Photograph Source: Frank Boston – CC BY 2.0

Getting rid of Trump means taking seriously “****-life syndrome”—and its resulting misery, which includes suicide, drug overdose death, and trauma for surviving communities.

My state of Ohio is home to many ****-life syndrome sufferers. In the 2016 presidential election, Hillary Clinton lost Ohio’s 18 electoral votes to Trump. She got clobbered by over 400,000 votes (more than 8%). She lost 80 of Ohio’s 88 counties. Trump won rural poorer counties, several by whopping margins. Trump got the ****-life syndrome vote.

Will Hutton in his 2018 Guardian piece, “The Bad News is We’re Dying Early in Britain – and It’s All Down to ‘****-Life Syndrome’” describes ****-life syndrome in both Britain and the United States: “Poor working-age Americans of all races are locked in a cycle of poverty and neglect, amid wider affluence. They are ill educated and ill trained. The jobs available are drudge work paying the minimum wage, with minimal or no job security.”

The Brookings Institution, in November 2019, reported: “53 million Americans between the ages of 18 to 64—accounting for 44% of all workers—qualify as ‘low-wage.’ Their median hourly wages are $10.22, and median annual earnings are about $18,000.”

For most of these low-wage workers, Hutton notes: “Finding meaning in life is close to impossible; the struggle to survive commands all intellectual and emotional resources. Yet turn on the TV or visit a middle-class shopping mall and a very different and unattainable world presents itself. Knowing that you are valueless, you resort to drugs, antidepressants and booze. You eat junk food and watch your ill-treated body balloon. It is not just poverty, but growing relative poverty in an era of rising inequality, with all its psychological side-effects, that is the killer.”

****-life syndrome is not another fictitious illness conjured up by the psychiatric-pharmaceutical industrial complex to sell psychotropic drugs. It is a reality created by corporatist rulers and their lackey politicians—pretending to care about their minimum-wage-slave constituents, who are trying to survive on 99¢ boxed macaroni and cheese prepared in carcinogenic water, courtesy of DuPont or some other such low-life leviathan.

The Cincinnati Enquirer, in November 2019, ran the story: “Suicide Rate Up 45% in Ohio in Last 11 Years, With a Sharper Spike among the Young.” In Ohio between 2007 and 2018, the rate of suicide among people 10 to 24 has risen by 56%. The Ohio Department of Health reported that suicide is the leading cause of death among Ohioans ages 10‐14 and the second leading cause of death among Ohioans ages 15‐34, with the suicide rate higher in poorer, rural counties.

Overall in the United States, “Suicides have increased most sharply in rural communities, where loss of farming and manufacturing jobs has led to economic declines over the past quarter century,” reports the American Psychological Association. The U.S. suicide rate has risen 33% from 1999 through 2017 (from 10.5 to 14 suicides per 100,000 people).

In addition to an increasing rate of suicide, drug overdose deaths rose in the United States from 16,849 in 1999 to 70,237 in 2017, more sharply increasing in recent years. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently reported that opioids—mainly synthetic opioids—were involved in 47,600 overdose deaths in 2017 (67.8% of all drug overdose deaths).

Among all states in 2017, Ohio had the second highest rate of drug overdose death (46.3 per 100,000). West Virginia had the highest rate (57.8 per 100,000).

“In 2016, Donald Trump captured 68 percent of the vote in West Virginia, a state hit hard by opioid overdoses,” begins the 2018 NPR story: “Analysis Finds Geographic Overlap In Opioid Use And Trump Support In 2016.”

The NPR story was about a study published in JAMA Network Open titled “Association of Chronic Opioid Use With Presidential Voting Patterns in US Counties in 2016,” lead authored by physician James Goodwin. In counties with high rates of opioid use, Trump received 60% of the vote; but Trump received only 39% of the vote in counties with low opioid use. Opioid use is prevalent in poor rural counties, as Goodwin reports in his study: “Approximately two-thirds of the association between opioid rates and presidential voting was explained by socioeconomic variables.”

Goodwin told NPR: “It very well may be that if you’re in a county that is dissolving because of opioids, you’re looking around and you’re seeing ruin. That can lead to a sense of despair . . . . You want something different. You want radical change.”

****-life syndrome sufferers are looking for immediate change, and are receptive to unconventional politicians.

In 2016, Trump understood that being unconventional, including unconventional obnoxiousness, can help ratings. So he began his campaign with unconventional serial humiliations of his fellow Republican candidates to get the nomination; and since then, his unconventionality has been limited only by his lack of creativity—relying mostly on the Roy Cohn modeled “Punch them harder than they punch you” for anyone who disagrees with him.

I talked to Trump voters in 2016, and many of them felt that Trump was not a nice person, even a jerk, but their fantasy was that he was one of those rich guys with a big ego who needed to be a hero. Progressives who merely mock this way of thinking rather than create a strategy to deal with it are going to get four more years of Trump.

The Dems’ problem in getting the ****-life syndrome vote in 2020 is that none of their potential nominees for president are unconventional. In 2016, Bernie Sanders achieved some degree of unconventionality. His young Sandernistas loved the idea of a curmudgeon grandfather/eccentric uncle who boldly proclaimed in Brooklynese that he was a “socialist,” and his fans marveled that he was no loser, having in fact charmed Vermonters into electing him to the U.S. Senate. Moreover, during the 2016 primaries, there were folks here in Ohio who ultimately voted for Trump but who told me that they liked Bernie—both Sanders and Trump appeared unconventional to them.

While Bernie still has fans in 2020, he has done major damage to his “unconventionality brand.” By backing Hillary Clinton in 2016, he resembled every other cowardly politician. I felt sorry for his Sandernistas, heartbroken after their hero Bernie—who for most of his political life had self-identified as an “independent” and a “socialist”—became a compliant team player for the corporatist Blue Team that he had spent a career claiming independence from. If Bernie was terrified in 2016 of risking Ralph Nader’s fate of ostracism for defying the corporatist Blue Team, would he really risk assassination for defying the rich bastards who own the United States?

So in 2020, this leaves realistic Dems with one strategy. While the Dems cannot provide a candidate who can viscerally connect with ****-life syndrome sufferers, the Dems can show these victims that they have been used and betrayed by Trump.

Here in Ohio in counties dominated by ****-life syndrome, the Dems would be wise not to focus on their candidate but instead pour money into negative advertising, shaming Trump for making promises that he knew he wouldn’t deliver on: Hillary has not been prosecuted; Mexico has paid for no wall; great manufacturing jobs are not going to Ohioans; and most importantly, in their communities, there are now even more suicides, drug overdose deaths, and grieving families.

You would think a Hollywood Dem could viscerally communicate in 30 seconds: “You fantasized that this braggart would be your hero, but you discovered he’s just another rich **** politician out for himself.” This strategy will not necessarily get Dems the ****-life syndrome vote, but will increase the likelihood that these folks stay home on Election Day and not vote for Trump.

The question is just how clueless are the Dems? Will they convince themselves that ****-life syndrome sufferers give a **** about Trump’s impeachment? Will they convince themselves that Biden, Buttigieg, Bloomberg or Warren are so wonderful that ****-life syndrome sufferers will take them and their campaign promises seriously? Then Trump probably wins again, thanks to both ****-life syndrome and ****-Dems syndrome.

Title: Watch: Wild Docking in Norway
Post by: AGelbert on January 28, 2020, 03:54:28 pm

Watch: Wild Docking 👀 in Norway
January 27, 2020 by Mike Schuler

Check out this wild video out of northern Norway showing an expedition cruise ship docking during strong winds.

The video was filmed on January 21 as the Hurtigruten expedition ship MS Nordnorge was docking Bodø, Norway. As you can see the Captain uses the ship’s anchor to ease the ship alongside the pier, earning him high praise on social media.

The 123.3 meter, 11,384 gross tonne MS Nordnorge was built in 1997 (refurbished in 2016) and provides expedition cruises for up to 590 passengers within the Artic Circle.

Last week’s wild docking wasn’t its first rodeo, either. Check out the video below showing the same ship pulling off a similar maneuver in 2016.
Title: New Section of Trump’s ‘Virtually Impenetrable’ Wall Gets Blown Over
Post by: Surly1 on January 30, 2020, 07:00:44 am
New Section of Trump’s ‘Virtually Impenetrable’ Wall Gets Blown Over by Wind in California (


Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images

On the campaign trail and trips to the southern border, President Trump has called his big, beautiful wall “tough,”“virtually impenetrable,” and hot enough “to fry an egg on.” On a September visit to the Otay Mesa border site in San Diego, he boasted, “This wall is not something that can be really knocked down.”

But on Wednesday, Customs and Border Protection confirmed to CNN that newly-installed wall panels in Calexico, California were knocked down by wind gusts of up to 37-miles-per-hour, causing the metal slats to timber into Mexican territory:

Agent Carlos Pitones of the Customs and Border Protection sector in El Centro, California, told CNN that the sections that gave way had recently been set in a new concrete foundation in Calexico, California. The concrete had not yet cured, according to Pitones, and the wall panels were unable to withstand the windy conditions.

The wall has faced a few setbacks that contradict Trump’s claims of near-impenetrability, like in November when the Washington Postreported that smugglers were using reciprocating saws — available for less than $100 — to cut through sections of the steel-bollard barrier in minutes. And though the president has claimed that no one would be able to climb the wall, smugglers have found a simple summiting method, using rebar ladders to hoist up one side, and rope ladders to scale down the other.

The fall of the inland California wall section is certainly less embarrassing than the cost-per-mile of the Trump administration’s campaign wish fulfillment on the border. Two weeks ago, the White House grabbed another $7.2 billion in Pentagon funding for the wall, to bring the total taxpayer cost to $18.4 billion. Last week, the administration celebrated the great success of that sum after hitting the 100th mile of wall built under Trump, a majority of it serving as replacement for existing border structures.

Title: Happy is the man that feareth alway: but he that hardeneth his heart shall fall into mischief.
Post by: AGelbert on January 30, 2020, 12:18:03 pm
New Section of  ( Trump’s ‘Virtually Impenetrable’ Wall Gets Blown Over by Wind in California (


God is talking to 🦀 Mr. Trump, who will, as he has done thoughout his life, not listen.


Title: The FBI Just Put White Nationalists, Neo-Nazis on the Same Threat Level as ISIS
Post by: Surly1 on February 07, 2020, 07:03:08 am
It's about time.

The FBI Just Put White Nationalists and Neo-Nazis on the Same Threat Level as ISIS (
“Not only is the terror threat diverse, it’s unrelenting," said FBI chief Chris Wray.

By Tess Owen Feb 6 2020, 12:03pm

Feb 6 2020, 12:03pm

The FBI has elevated racially-motivated violent extremism to a “national threat priority,” in yet another sign that the U.S. government has finally woken up to the threat posed by white nationalists and neo-Nazis at home and abroad.

In a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday, FBI Director Christopher Wray outlined several concrete steps the agency had taken to combat violent far-right extremists, explaining that the “national threat priority” designation puts those groups or individuals on the same footing as ISIS” in terms of the resources the FBI will devote to it.

“We’re particularly focused on domestic terrorism, especially racially or ethnically motivated violent extremists,” said Wray. “Not only is the terror threat diverse, it’s unrelenting.”

READ: 'I need to claim my first victim': Alleged Neo-Nazis' Violent Plans for Virginia Rally Revealed

Wray’s announcement comes just two weeks after FBI agents arrested eight members of the violent neo-Nazi group The Base, three of whom were allegedly discussing firing into the crowd during the large pro-gun rally in Virginia last month. In recent months, the FBI also foiled two synagogue bombings, Wray said.

The FBI chief also said that he’d created a domestic terrorism and hate crimes fusion cell to “bring together the expertise of domestic terror folks and hate crimes folks.” “They’re working together to not just focus on the threats that have already happened but to look ahead around the corner to anticipate where else we need to be.”

Last September, DHS unveiled its new counterterrorism strategy that, for the first time, recognized white nationalism as a major threat. Congress has held well over a dozen hearings on the matter, and lawmakers have called on the State Department to designate international far-right networks as foreign terror organizations, and on DHS to produce threat assessments of those networks.

And according to Wray’s testimony last November, the FBI made 107 domestic terrorism arrests in fiscal year 2019 — around the same number of international terrorism arrests.

Making far-right extremism a national threat priority means the FBI can allocate more resources to the problem in terms of personnel, agents, and analysts, says Mark Concordia, FBI and New York State Counterterrorism instructor and associate professor of criminal justice at Roberts Wesleyan College.

“The decision would be based on intelligence analysis and obviously the potential increase in these types of attacks, whether the investigation shows they are a hate crime or racially motivated, and whether they can be tied to a larger organization or ideology rather than an individual hate crime” said Concordia.

Citing Justice Department sources, CBS reports that more federal arrests targeting neo-Nazi or white nationalists are coming down the pike, including people with ties to networks in Europe, Ukraine, and Russia.

Title: Trump is a White Nationalist.
Post by: AGelbert on February 07, 2020, 05:10:02 pm
The FBI Just Put White Nationalists and Neo-Nazis on the Same Threat Level as ISIS (

Trump is a White Nationalist. I hope the FBI has noticed. If Sanders becomes POTUS, I am sure that Trump will be added to the FBI list if they have, for some strange reason, neglected to classify Trump as a White Nationalist before that.

Title: Re: Non-routine News
Post by: Surly1 on February 08, 2020, 09:34:10 am
Title: The French understand the stakes.
Post by: AGelbert on February 08, 2020, 06:12:35 pm

( Thank you for posting this. The French involved in these massive protests are, unlike most Americans, reality based.
Title: Re: The French understand the stakes.
Post by: Surly1 on February 09, 2020, 07:32:47 am

( Thank you for posting this. The French involved in these massive protests are, unlike most Americans, reality based.

No Faux News.
Title: Smart French People
Post by: AGelbert on February 09, 2020, 07:29:20 pm

( Thank you for posting this. The French involved in these massive protests are, unlike most Americans, reality based.

No Faux News.

Title: NASA ISS Catches UFO On Camera For 22 Min 👀
Post by: AGelbert on February 24, 2020, 12:56:29 pm
NASA ISS Catches UFO On Camera For 22 Min 👀
2,162 views•Streamed live 8 hours ago

Jamarl Thomas
27.7K subscribers

Support the stream:
Category News & Politics
Title: Caught on Camera: Containership Takes Out Crane in Busan, South Korea 👀
Post by: AGelbert on April 07, 2020, 05:46:13 pm

Caught on Camera: Containership Takes Out Crane in Busan, South Korea (
April 6, 2020 by Mike Schuler

A major accident was caught on camera today at the Port of Busan today when a containership struck multiple shoreside gantry cranes and another ship while berthing.

The video shows the Milano Bridge approaching its berth with the assistance of tugs at Busan New Port. In the video, you can one of the cranes collapse over the stern of the Milano Bridge. Another two cranes were also impacted along with a second ship, identified Seaspan Ganges.

No injuries were reported.

Check out the incident video below:

Built in 2018, the Milano Bridge is a 13,900 TEU containership that is 365.94 meters in length overall (LOA).

The incident was also captured from a second viewpoint in the video below (which appears to be sped up):

An AIS (automatic identification system) animation provides yet another look at the incident, courtesy Made Smart Group BV:
Title: Rollover on Interstate 91 prompts temporary closure of lanes
Post by: AGelbert on May 07, 2020, 04:08:34 pm

May 7, 2020

Partial lane closures were enforced on one of Vermont's busiest roadways Thursday morning following a rollover crash.


Rollover on Interstate 91 prompts temporary closure of lanes ( (

Title: Are Companies Doing Enough to Protect Offshore Workers from Storms?
Post by: AGelbert on May 21, 2021, 12:48:17 pm


Are Companies Doing Enough to Protect Offshore Workers from 🌊 Storms? (

Total Views: 7962
May 17, 2021


By Arnold & Itkin Law Firm

On September 29, 2015, the El Faro, a cargo ship owned by TOTE Maritime, disembarked Jacksonville, Florida. It was supposed to arrive in Puerto Rico a few days later. However, at the same time, Tropical Storm Joaquin was gathering strength a few hundred miles to the cargo ship’s east. By September 30, the storm had grown into a Category 3 hurricane.

On October 1, 2015, the El Faro became a household name in America.

The cargo ship, along with 33 crew members, had vanished as it sailed into the hurricane. After an extensive search, the El Faro was declared sunk. The search for survivors was called off on October 7, and all 33 crew members were presumed dead. Their bodies were never recovered.


What Happened to the El Faro?

Full article: (

Agelbert NOTE: The storms are predicted to increase in severity and frequency due to Catastrophic Climate Change (read more below).

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity: PART 1 of 3 (
Title: Watch: 👀 Containership Takes Out Cranes at Kaohsiung Port in Taiwan
Post by: AGelbert on June 04, 2021, 01:54:11 pm

Watch: Containership Takes Out Cranes at Kaohsiung Port in Taiwan 👀
Mike Schuler
Total Views: 24777
June 3, 2021

A 316-meter-long containership took out two cranes at the Port of Kaohsiung in Taiwan.

The port reported that the OOCL Durban was being moved from another area of the port when it scraped another docked ship, pushing it into a ship-to-shore crane which subsequently collapsed. The OOCL Durban was not carrying any cargo at the time.

A second view of the incident shows workers scrambling for cover as the crane and adjacent cargo stacks collapsed on the pier.

Reporting indicates two workers were trapped inside the wreckage and were later rescued without injury. Another suffered a cut to the arm.

A statement from the Port of Kaohsiung said the OOCL Durban was bound for Pier 66, belonging to Yang Ming, when the incident occurred.

“The ship was booked to berth at Pier 66 of Kaohsiung Port, but when the ship passed through Pier 70, it collided with the bow of the “Yong Hung Ship (Gross Tonnage 32,720)” anchored at Pier 70 slightly damaged, and one of the overhead crane One GC8 bridge crane. After the collapse of the GC8 bridge crane, the adjacent GC6 crane was seriously damaged. A total of 1 collapsed, 1 severely damaged but not collapsed and 30-50 containers were damaged, and 1 GC8 bridge crane was caused,” the port said in a statement (translated in english by Google).

The OOCL Durban later docked at Pier 66 for investigation.