Friday, July 31, 2009

Aquatic Ape Theory Espoused



I find this argument intriguing.

UPDATE: Ran across some criticisms of the theory from professional anthropologists here and here.

Food for thought.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Failure is no longer an option...


Failure, originally uploaded by Markydeee.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Taxi to the Dark Side - Great Documentary

Sarah and I just finished watching Taxi to the Dark Side. Sarah suggested it and when I looked it up on Rotten Tomatoes, it had a 100% fresh rating.

I've never seen that high a rating before, but the film earns it IMHO. It an eloquent explication of how the United States devolved into a torture regime.

I think it's impossible to watch this film and not have it temper one's enthusiasm for the United States. And I love this country. I love the red states and the blue states. I love the United States Post Office and the Library of Congress and the United States military.

But Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld fucked up a lot of things during their time in the sun. And their misdeeds have dishonored us all... even as their lunatic reign bankrupted us.

I really don't understand why they haven't been imprisoned. I guess it would infuriate half the people in this country.

If you're one of those people, you should watch Taxi to the Dark Side. Let me know if it doesn't change your mind.

If you already dislike Bush and Cheney, then this movie will give the reassuring, if sinking feeling, that you were right all along about those bastards.

I hate to end my blog post on such a somber note. So let me entreat God to bless America. And the rest of the world. May they forgive us our offenses against them someday.

But I think we have to meet them halfway and prosecute Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld for torture and murder.

Monday, July 27, 2009

SOG SEAL Revolver

This is a good close-up of the scallops for the thumb on the back of the knife blade as discussed in my previous post.

Go to Hell Bag & SOG Knives

Borelli Consulting has an interesting item about a "Go to Hell" bag. This is a slightly different angle on a bug-out bag.

The Go to Hell bag is discussed in the camping context, in case you get marooned or lost, you should always have a few important items on you (like water and a knife).

While the SOG Team Leader seems like a good knife, I have a SOG SEAL Revolver, that I really like. It has a saw blade hidden in the handle that swaps out with the knife blade.

The lock-up is tight and it seems much safer to me than having the saw blade on the back end of the knife, where you want to put your thumb for control. The Revolver's knife blade is scalloped precisely for thumb placement and control.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Equilibrium


Dancers, originally uploaded by Lupe Jelena.

Death before Dishonor

I watched Michael Mann's Public Enemies |WK|RT| tonight and I loved it. I enjoyed the acting, dialogue, and the special effects, by which I mean that the firefights were awesome.

An interesting portrait of Hoover in the picture as well as John Dillinger.

I liked Mann's prior movie Heat |RT|quite a bit, although it was a bit rambling. Public Enemies is a much tighter narrative.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Space exploration: Moon, Mars, and then... Generation Ships

While I love the idea of the human race spreading through the cosmos like a sexually transmitted disease, I'm skeptical that we'll be able to establish a significant presence on Mars by 2050.

A senior Nasa official has told the Guardian that the world's space agencies, or the commercial firms that may eventually succeed them, could issue one-way tickets to space, with the travellers accepting that they would not come back....

If, as [John Olson, Nasa's director of exploration systems integration] predicts, humans reach Mars by the middle of this century, engineers and astronauts may then set their sights on the frozen planets, fiery moons and stars beyond.

"We're going back to the moon, not for flags and footsteps but for a sustained presence," Olson said. "We're going to use the moon as a stepping stone to Mars and we're going to look at other interesting spots, like asteroids and near-Earth objects, and we're going to look at all the other exciting places to go in this solar system."...

"Space is no longer for power and prestige; it's truly for economic benefit," the Apollo 11 flight director Eugene Kranz said. "The technology that emerges from high-risk, high-profile, extremely difficult missions is the technology that will keep the economic engine of our nation continuing to go through the years."

With currently foreseeable technology, a round trip to Mars launched from a lunar outpost would take two to three years – a journey of six to nine months each way and a year-long mission on the surface. |Space exploration volunteers wanted (The catch? It's a one-way ticket) - Guardian|


Maybe the Chinese will spend some of their $2 Trillion in hard currency reserves to send astronauts to the Moon...

Slavery, that peculiar but persistent institution

Did you know that the Vikings were big into human trafficking?

Slavery has been around a long time, and unfortunately, was not extinguished with the Emancipation Proclamation. |WK|

Sex slavery, or forced prostituion, is the most common form of slavery today but there are many people around the world working who are imprisoned in labor camps by one form of despot or another.

A new documentary, the Real Sex Traffic, discloses one man's valiant effort to free his wife from captivity.

Link: The real sex traffic



For the record, if anyone sells my lovely wife into slavery, he had better pray that I die trying to liberate her, because paybacks are hell.

Via Coming Anarchy.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Kepner Got His Grip

Dalton Trumbo's polemic against war, Johnny Got his Gun |WK|WC|, is the story of a who wishes he'd been killed by the artillery shell that maimed him... removing his arms, legs and face.

IMO one of the most poignant parts of the book is when he wishes he could once again hold his girlfriend in his arms. It made me realize how lucky I am to be alive; to enjoy the simple pleasures of life.

I wonder if the Associated Press' Dan Nephin had read Trumbo's classic work when I saw his article Hand Transplant Patient hopes to feel Wife's Touch at Salon. Worldwide twelve people have had double hand transplants. Welcome to the twenty-first century, my friends!

The art and science of medicine are amazing and it's truly a wonderful world to live in if one has health insurance.

But the cynic in me wonders if the black market in human body parts isn't about to explode.

|Cross-posted at the Bellman|

Elaboration

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Frolic


banksy, originally uploaded by snappycat.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Jack Johnson's Badfish

Badfish

I actually like Jack Johnson's version of Badfish better than the original by Sublime, which surprised me.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Treason by any other name

I’m shocked what people post on public websites. I found this statement at Amazon.com:

The bottom line is, like one of our for fathers [sic] stated "a revolution from time to time will be necessary to maintain our freedoms"
He was right & we are well over do [sic].
I will give my life for Freedom! I have known this for about 15 years now.
I will die on my feet before I live on my knees.
"I am sick of being raped & pillaged by our own government"
|Link|


At what point does this become treason?

There exist many things I'd like to see changed about the Republic, but to openly advocate bloody revolution is another thing altogether.

Monday, July 06, 2009

The Rocket's Red Glare