Sunday, December 31, 2006

Lauryn Hill

I saw Lauryn Hill on Chappelle's Block Party - I knew she could sing but I didnt realize how absolutely beautiful she is. I couldnt take my eyes off her. Wow.

Saddam's death

I am disgusted with how we portray Saddam Hussein. Are there worse tyrants in the world? Of course. Search the web and learn about the Belgian Congo - talk about a history of violence, exploitation and misery! What about the genocide that happened in Bosnia, Rwanda, and Darfur without the US doing anything to stop it? My problem with Saddam is not with what he did (ruthless cruel evil dictator) but its how our country has behaved. Showing him after his capture to humiliate him was followed by showing him in his underwear - same thing. Then the phoney trial with the verdict: guilty! What a surprise! And then the hanging, captured of course on videotape. What kind of country are we? Are we as barbarous as Saddam? How many innocent people have been killed since our invasion, compared to how many Saddam killed? Can we question whether or not George W. Bush is as big a war criminal as Saddam? Gen. Garner once said that you have to measure your success in war by the following question you ask yourself every night: will I have fewer enemies in the morning? Ok, so we went to sleep friday night, with Saddam's execution pending, as we ask ourselves, will we have fewer enemies in the morning after Saddam has been executed? Of course not. We now have more enemies.

Kanye West: Jesus Walks With Me

I rented Dave Chappelle's Block Party after reading on msnbc that it was one of the top twenty films of 2006 (?) Yes, it is fantastic. The music is over the top. The high stepping marching band of Central State University in Ohio is featured - they are amazing, such beautiful and gifted young men and women. A And then Kanye West comes out and sings a song I couldn't believe. I listened to it 3 times before I could belive my ears - I listened to it a fourth time and concluded it is a masterpiece - a combination of rap and gospel that I have never heard. Here are the lyrics. BTW - George Bush doesn't like black people. If they played music like this in church maybe I would attend more often!

We at war
We at war with terrorism, racism, and most of all we at war with ourselves
(Jesus Walks)
God show me the way because the Devil trying to break me down
(Jesus Walks with me) with me with me with me [fades]

You know what the Midwest is?
Young & Restless
Where restless Niggaz might snatch your necklace
And next these Niggaz might jack your Lexus
Somebody tell these Niggaz who Kanye West is
I walk through the valley of the shadow of death is
Top floor the view alone will leave you breathless Uhhhh!
Try to catch it Uhhhh! It's kinda hard
Getting choked by the detectives yeah yeah now check the method
They be asking us questions, harass and arrest us
Saying "we eat pieces of shit like you for breakfast"
Huh? Yall eat pieces of shit? What's the basis?
We ain't going nowhere but got suits and cases
A trunk full of coke rental car from Avis
My momma used to say only Jesus can save us
Well momma I know I act a fool
But I'll be gone til November I got packs to move I Hope

(Jesus Walks)
God show me the way because the Devil trying to break me down
(Jesus Walks with me)
The only thing that I pray is that me feet don't fail me now
(Jesus Walks)
And I don't think there is nothing I can do now to right my wrongs
(Jesus Walks with me)
I want to talk to God but I'm afraid because we ain't spoke in so long

(Jesus Walks)
God show me the way because the Devil trying to break me down
(Jesus Walks with me)
The only thing that I pray is that me feet don't fail me now
(Jesus Walks)
And I don't think there is nothing I can do now to right my wrongs
(Jesus Walks with me)
I want to talk to God but I'm afraid because we ain't spoke in so long

To the hustlas, killers, murderers, drug dealers even the strippers
To the victims of Welfare for we living in hell here hell yeah
Now hear ye hear ye want to see Thee more clearly
I know he hear me when my feet get weary
Cuz we're the almost nearly extinct
We rappers is role models we rap we don't think
I ain't here to argue about his facial features
Or here to convert atheists into believers
I'm just trying to say the way school need teachers
The way Kathie Lee needed Regis that's the way I need Jesus
So here go my single dog radio needs this
They say you can rap about anything except for Jesus
That means guns, sex, lies, video tapes
But if I talk about God my record won't get played Huh?
Well let this take away from my spins
Which will probably take away from my ends
Then I hope this take away from my sins
And bring the day that I'm dreaming about
Next time I'm in the club everybody screaming out

(Jesus Walks)
God show me the way because the devil trying to break me down
(Jesus Walks with me)
The only thing that I pray is that me feet don't fail me now

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Eleven year old understands global warming!

I have been attending the unitarian universalist church here in slippery rock the last few weeks. Today an eleven year old girl spoke up during the "sharing" time, and she talked about the video she saw about global warming (An Inconvenient Truth by Al Gore I assume). She talked about something that disturbed her: a polar bear who was having trouble hunting and living because the ice was melting. It was the image of the polar bear that she remembered - she has linked global warming with the plight of polar bears. When you think about that - I mean the abstract reasoning that is involved - how we live affects polar bears - absolutely amazing! I loved that moment. I recycle because municipal solid waste (MSW) contributes to global warming - an elementary recyling program can reduce MSW by 1/3 ( my colleague Dr. Sharon Sykora and I did a survey of Pennsylvania boroughs and found that out). When you recycle, you are helping that polar bear. An eleven year old figured that out! So why doesn't President Bush understand that? I am slapping my forehead right now - Duh!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Prancer the best Christmas movie

I know most people think Miracle on 34th Street or It's a Wonderful Life are great Christmas movies, but I think Prancer is the best. First there is the performance of Rebecca Harrell - she was only 8 yrs old when she played the lead. Sam Eliott is good as her depressed, beat down in life dad. Cloris Leachman is great as the grumpy neighborhood. Even Rutyana Alda is in it as the kind Aunt - she starred in Deerhunter (the pregnant bride).

Friday, December 22, 2006

Flying jet man

This guy steps out of a Helio jet prop plane, unfolds his wings, uses altitude to establish air speed, then turns on his two jets. He not only flies, but he obviously has control of himself - he executes turns, climbs, descends, all the basic aeronautical maneuvers of an airplane. When his fuel is expended, he opens his parachute, folds the wings, and lands perfectly. I wouldn't believe it unless I actually saw it. Amazing. This guy is obviously an expert skydiver, and those guys DO NOT take risks - everything is planned out. So he must have been confident that this was safe. BTW, he is flying over the alps!

Cheetah with prosthetic leg

Here is a story about a cheetah who was caught in a trap, had to have her leg cut off. The vet fitted her with a prosthetic leg. She can't be in the wild anymore, but she will have the chance to live. When I lived in Oklahoma, renting a house on a ranch, the rancher allowed one of his old hillbilly friends to "trap" on the ranch. This jerk set traps that captured dogs, deer, crows and finally a lynx. I confronted this guy and he said he wasn't responsible for people allowing their dogs to run free - mind you, this is rural oklahoma, and just about every household had dogs running around. I called the county sheriff and he said the guy couldnt trap on known animal routes, like the deer run. He also said he couldnt trap crows and cut their feet off for bait. But the sheriff also said he didnt have enough help to arrest the guy. I think animal trapping is stupid and cruel. In africa some farmers trap to prevent wild animals from hurting their livestock, or to catch game to eat. But trapping Cheetahs is just plain wrong.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Massacre in Haditha

Here is a bbc report about the alledged murder of 15 civilians in Haditha, after an IED killed one American soldier. These marines I think already suffer from post traumatic stress. Observors said the soldiers went on a "rampage." We put our troops in situations like this, and when they flip out we prosecute them. I know killing civilians is wrong, but put myself in the place of the soldiers, I wonder if i would have acted differently. When does someone just snap? There can be no justice in this case: innocent people were killed, and to prosecute the soldiers won't bring them back. These soldiers need counseling. Of course its a political problem: we can't NOT do anything because that would undermine an already embattled Iraqi government. More sadness and tragedy from Iraq.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Why we Fight? The Israeli model.

In the movie, Why we Fight, ex CIA Chambers Johnson says part of the reason is the volunteer military. He said the attitude of the American people is "screw you guys, you volunteered!" I don't agree with that, but there is very little opposition to troops in Iraq because (and here i agree) they are volunteers. Bring back the draft? The Senate opposes that. The military opposes that. Students oppose that. But can you imagine where the country would be if Pres. Bush had to draft people to serve in Iraq? There would be massive demonstrations. Everyone in Israel must serve in the IDF - men and women. And after there active service they have to serve in the reserve. Many Isrealis felt that the reserve soldiers who were called up for the invasion of southern Lebanon were not equipped well, and not used well. There have been demonstrations. Israelis hold their government responsible for how the military is used and treated. Americans are at a disconnect: we honor our troops, support our troops, but they are volunteers and we don't become angry when they are misused. We agree as a nation that our Iraq policy has failed: so our soldiers who continue to be killed, wounded, crippled, are the victims of a failed policy. Why arent we angry about this? Where are the demonstrations? I firmly believe that we as a nation are absolutely disconnected from our military - we honor them as Legionnaires, but do not connect to their suffering. I think we need a draft: everyone serves. Men serve two years, women one year. Then they serve in reserves until they are 40 yrs old. When we fight wars, we fight with a citizen military. We wouldn't be in Iraq now if we had a draft. People would be in the streets demanding something to be done if we had a draft. The reason why we dont is so the people don't have control of the military - the executive branch controls it. What can we tell our soldiers that they are fighting for? Their profession? They are fighting because its their job? We need to look at the Israeli model of staffing a military.

More troops!

"I'm inclined to believe that we do need to increase our troops — the Army, the Marines," Bush said in the Oval Office session. " I teach an introductory cother american government courses what bud lite is to budwieser. One thing I explain to students is that the war on terror differs from convention war, because there are no mass troops. Could someone please explain that to Pres. Bush?! Even the military generals don't think more troops in Iraq will help. We tried that before: wasn't effective. The only way out is through negotiations with Syria and Iran, and that means admitting that we lost. Almost 3,000 troops lost, 30,000 injured, many severely, and the end result is that Syria and Iran are stronger regional powers. What a complete mess. I still can't get over the big Rumsfeld farewell event: Bush is lost in a bubble. Hezbollah is still in southern Lebanon, Gaza is a mess, Hamas is gaining strength - we screw up in Iraq and we make it even worse for Israel! And this will get worse.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Captain Robert Falcon Scott's HQ in Antartica

Terra Nova was Captain Scott's Antartic lodge. It has been preserved as Antartica's oldest most historic building. The pictures of the interior are amazing! A museum in Antartica!

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Currywurst: the recipe

In the movie Walk on Water, when Eyal the Israeli Mossad agent flies to Berlin to visit Axel, Axel buys Eyal some Currywurst from a street vendor. Eyah says, "these hot dogs are really good!" and Axel says, they're not hot dogs they're Currywurst. So here is a currywurst recipe. It says you can substitute ketchup for the currywurst sauce - good grief! NO! You can't do that! Sorry this is not vegetarian.

Mission San Miguel Arcangel

Here is the site of the Mission San Miguel Arcangel in California. Brother Antonion will take you for a tour. Be sure you see the frescos in the chapel. BTW the Chapel is closed to the public due to earthquake damage. There are plans to repair it.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Rumsfeld: Don't let the doorknob hit your ___ on the way out!

I can't get over the big sendoff Donald Rumsfeld received. A four star marine corps general, the Prez, the VP, and a fife and drum parade! This guy should have been fired 3 years ago. Clearly, Bush rewards loyalty, and returns it. This signals that there will be no change in Iraq - Bush thinks Rumsfeld has done a good job. At this point no one knows what will happen in Iraq - it can only get worse. The military personnel over there are not accomplishing anything, other than preventing the entire country from descending into chaos - well, I guess that is something after all. More people are fleeing Iraq - so who stays? The poor, the ones with no marketable skills, the ones with plans for revenge...Iraq is not only in civil war, I think it has become a failed state. A failed state is one with no economy (Iraq has no banking system and high unemployment) civil war (3,000 civilians killed each month) with the elite/educated fleeing (any one with a marketable profession has left). And we hold an honorary ceremony for the blockhead responsible! I am convinced that finally the great Senator from Pennsylvania, James Buchanan, will finally escape the title given by historians as "worst President ever" - that award now goes to George W. Bush. he is in such a bubble that he is clueless. At least Condi Rice goes to the Veterans hospital in VA to visit the wounded! Here is a "poem" by Donald Rumsfeld, created from one of his notorious press conferences.

The Unknown

As we know,
There are known knowns.
There are things we know we know.
We also know
There are known unknowns.
That is to say
We know there are some things
We do not know.
But there are also unknown unknowns,
The ones we don't know
We don't know.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Who's on First?

The old Abbott and Costello routine has been made into a video with Pres. Bush and Condi Rice. Funny!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Charlie Brown Terrorist Christmas

Here is Charlie Brown's Christmas with a jihadist terror twist! Is nothing sacred?! BTW to play this you have to prove to YouTube that you are over 18 and register.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Hitler's home movies: amazing!

Here is a 45 min film about hitler's home movies, and how electronic lip reading now allows to add sound to the movies - Hitler now talks in his home movies. Hitler bought Eva Braun a hand held movie camera. Turns out Hitler sounded different in private - his speeches were staged productions, his voice amplified, and his movements choreographed (by a magician/stage performer who was actually an Austrian jew!).

How to make a hot air balloon from a tea bag

Here is how to create a hot air balloon from a tea bag.

Color picture of US before WWII

Here is a site that shows color pictures of US before WWII. Kodacrome was just invented, cost $5 per roll to develop, had to send it to Rochester NY to Kodak's processing center. Most people made $10 a week wages, so most people still used black and white. But the fed government gave out film to photographers (The WPA - depression era gov agency that "made work" for people) and ther result are these amazing pictures. We were a very poor, racially segregated nation.

James Kim's hike

Terrible tragic story about James Kim, how his family was trapped in car in snowstorm how he tried to hike for help. Here is a map of his hike. I remember a survival team building exercise, how the class is in a plane crash, they are alive but in a snow bound wilderness, and they assemble 10 items. Their task is to arrange in order of importance the 10 items. Almost always a subgroup wants to hike out: It is a death sentence. If you are snowbound in your car, you are not prepared to hike in the snow: you dont have the right clothes, or boots; you dont have water or food; you have no shelter; the snow may cover streams or natural obstacles; you have no first aid supplies; most important, you have no compass (assuming you even know how to use one in hiking)you will die. After hiking 16 miles, he ended up almost back where he started.

Oldest living creature on earth: The Greenland artic shark!

This is a story about the Greenland artic shark grows 1/2 centimeter a year, so a 7 metre shark would be several hundred years old, the oldest non-plant living creature on the planet. It swims as deep as 2,100 meters, or over 1 mile deep. It appears in summer months in shallow waters, which is where this researcher studies them. In winter they live under the ice, but no one knows where they go, how they mate, what they eat.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Terry Tate: Office Linebacker

Here is a funny video about Terry Tate, office linebacker. He "owns" the office, enforces rules, tackles employees who break the rules!

E. Coli, Taco Bell and New Jersey.

From msnbc story: "Yum Brands Inc. Tuesday said the strain of E. coli that is suspected to have sickened the victims is no longer in any of its Taco Bell restaurants.

'The E. coli strain appears to have passed through our system,' Tim Jerzyk, Yum’s vice president of investor relations, said at a meeting with Wall Street analysts on Tuesday." Tim Jerzyk is oblivious to his double entendre - that it has PASSED THROUGH OUR SYSTEM. I laughed out loud at that quote!

Taco Bell uses dehyrated prepared food, and hydrates them (adds water) in big pots. Only the vegetables are "fresh." The deluxe burrito has more calories and fat than a burger king whopper. Even the salads have 8 grams of fat.

When I travel I take vege sandwiches with me in a cooler my son and daughter in law purchased for me. The only exception is eating a vege burger at burger king.

911 Conspiracy and South Park

South Park explains the whole 911 conspiracy! Why do people believe 911 was a conspiracy? "Because 1/4 of the American people are retarded" explains President Bush! I was recently at a College Democrats meeting and someone (an older man, not a student) Pres. Bush and Israel were behind the 911 attacks, that WT towers were brought down with demolition explosions.So I said, "3,000 people are dead and you blame the Jews?!" And he said, "Its no coincidence that the landlord of WT was Jewish, AND he had an insurance policy on the buildings." So I said, "So you have a home owners policy on your house, and if saudi arabian terrorists fly a plane into your house, you must obviously be part of a conspiracy?" And at that point someone interrupted and changed the subject. I think poeple are so full of fear, so overwhelmed by reality, that they have to make up elaborate explanations to reassure themselves that the world is under their control. Add some anti-semitism to it, and 911 conspiracy is created. So watch this video and you'll find out who REALLY is behind 911, and who took a dump in the South Park elementary urinal! Once again, South Park parodies American culture, in their own funny, obscene fashion.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Train Ride in India

Here is an amazing insight into life in the crowded 3rd world. These two guys show you how they got on a train in India. And here is a link to train surfing in Soweto, South Africa.

National Lampoon and Teddy kennedy's driving

Who remembers the National Lampoon magazine? Extremely funny satire, from 1970-1975. One issue included an ad for Volkswagon, a lampoon on Ted Kennedy's accident on Chappaquiddick, pictured here. The real story of the auto accident is that he and Mary Jo Kopeckne left a party to go for a "drive." They were seen by a police officer necking, and the officer noted the car in his diary. They changed seats, with Mary Jo driving, because Ted was afraid that the police car would pull him over, and he would be charged with DUI. They headed for the beach as backup plan for sex in the car. Ted is familiar with that slanted bridge, Mary Jo was not. The car flipped upside down - it was night, the water dark, Ted was disoriented, and he somehow got out. He panicked, swam back to the main island, and contacted his aides. Was she still alive? Not a chance. Mary Jo was a former campaign worker for Bobby, and probably she reminded him of Bobby, so he got drunk (he was very depressed and alcoholic during this period of his life)and he and Mary Jo needed some privacy for what they were planning to do. He made up the story about him driving because otherwise he'd have to reveal the "necking in the car" and him being DUI - so he said he was the driver. He was never charged because the police chief knew about the necking report, knew that Ted was drunk and they switched drivers. But yeah, if they were in a VW they would have both lived: VW's bug were airtight. I remember always opening the window a little before I closed the door, otherwise my ears would feel the compression of the air when the door slammed shut (and you really needed to shut the door firmly).