Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Potpourri CIV

Another mixed bag this evening. Two days until vacation. Thank goodness. The blathersphere is starting to wear me down (as, no doubt, the pack-mentality piling on is intended to do).

If you read this piece from the L.A. Times, it becomes quickly apparent from the writer's tone that you are just too stupid to realize that government-run health care is good for you. It's that tone alone that puts off people--something to consider when going out to sell the superiority of your ideas to "the rubes"--why should people listen if you act as if you're an idiot?

Speaking of L.A., I've been watching the news of the L.A. fires sporadically--more specifically, about the fires' proximity to the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the Mt. Wilson Observatory, two organizations close to my heart. The good news is that it appears both facilities are out of danger for the moment. One thing that has fascinated me about the firefighting effort has been the size of the aircraft doing the work now. It used to be small transports like C-130s; now they're using DC-10s and 747s. Wow! That's a lot of water or flame retardant!

This one came from my "foodie" friend Michelle, and it's just too good to pass up: a blow-by-blow email chain from a company attempting to get its first Twitter posting approved. Too funny!

Some gratuitous pictures of aircraft. Before the space geekitude kicked in, I loved airplanes. Still do, obviously.

New from Hu: an interesting video splicing together some of the discussions of the Augustine Panel.

Does President Obama want to politically pre-program your kids? Perish the thought.

Need a Science Cheerleader t-shirt? Sure you do! And now you can buy one--at a $4 discount, if you do well on Dar's science literacy test. And speaking of Dar, she's made another interview appearance, this time on Gooooo Dar!

The AFL-CIO is suggesting that the government put a tax on every single stock sale/transaction. No doubt they hope to stir up populist resentment against "Wall Street fat cats" and other capitalists, hoping that the angry public won't recall that half of the populace owns stocks via pensions or 401(k) plans. For gosh sakes...will someone please put a BRAKE on these guys? They passed the point of overreach several months ago.

From Rhonda at Learn to Read: a site with adult literacy resources.

From Stephanie at work: a do-it-yourself podcast program for students to create their own space-related podcast. Cool!

You know, with all these old TV shows being brought back in one form or another, I would love to see Night Court on DVD...NOT remade into a sequel or "reboot" or whatever. I just want to savor some of the zaniness. The example here will suffice; this one stars the usual cast plus Brent Spiner, later known as Commander Data on Star Trek: The Next Generation.

And a last little bit of silliness for your day: the wife of the new Japanese prime minister claims to have been abducted by aliens.

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