That is it for the night

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Feeling a bit tired and have to run into town tomorrow to get the rest of the prescriptions from Costco.

The usual stuff on the internet but nothing that jumps out at me.

Back from the skin doctor

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Turns out that I was doing everything wrong.

It looked like a fungal infection to me - athlete's foot on steroids so I bent over backwards keeping the infected area as dry as possible.

Since Tea Tree oil has known and good anti-fungal properties, I cooked up a bunch of salve with Coconut Oil (another good skin oil), a bit of wax for stability and a bunch of Tea Tree Essential Oil. Slathered it on one evening before going to bed and woke up the next morning to blistered skin - still looks like hell and hurts like the dickens.

For the fungus, I needed to bathe the area three times/day and soak it. Not with epsom salts as I had been doing but with Burow's Solution invented by  Karl August Burow sometime in the late 1800's.

I go back in a week - the doctor is really good and spent about 90 minutes with me this afternoon getting the worst of the crud flaked off. Whip this puppy back in shape in no time.

The store internet problem was a bad phone cable from the wall to the modem. My manager figured it out. I have a really great crew of people working there.

Oh hell no - the Internet

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From Breitbart:

UN Could Take Over ICANN, and the Internet, Oct. 1
The United Nations could take over control of the Internet on October 1, when the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) passes from U.S. administration to the control of a multilateral body, most likely the United Nations International Telecommunications Union (ITU).

While the administration and its defenders have denied that the UN will have authority over ICANN, the Wall Street Journal‘s L. Gordon Crovitz points out that ICANN will need to be run by a state agency in order to retain its antitrust exemption, which makes it almost certainly that the UN will step in to take control.

That corrupt bunch of kleptocrats would ruin one of the best things that has happened to this world. Time for them to disband, move out of New York City (their headquarters is sitting on some prime real estate in downtown Manhattan). Move them to someplace like Zimbabwe and start making them pay their own way - right now, the USA contributes one fifth of the UN's operating budget and what do we get? Zilch.

Time to watch Young Frankenstein again

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From Variety:

Gene Wilder, ‘Willy Wonka’ Star and Comedic Icon, Dies at 83
Gene Wilder, who regularly stole the show in such comedic gems as “The Producers,” “Blazing Saddles,” “Young Frankenstein,” “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” and “Stir Crazy,” died Monday at his home in Stamford, Conn. His nephew Jordan Walker-Pearlman said he died of complications from Alzheimer’s disease. He was 83.

His nephew said in a statement, “We understand for all the emotional and physical challenges this situation presented we have been among the lucky ones — this illness-pirate, unlike in so many cases, never stole his ability to recognize those that were closest to him, nor took command of his central-gentle-life affirming core personality. The decision to wait until this time to disclose his condition wasn’t vanity, but more so that the countless young children that would smile or call out to him “there’s Willy Wonka,” would not have to be then exposed to an adult referencing illness or trouble and causing delight to travel to worry, disappointment or confusion. He simply couldn’t bear the idea of one less smile in the world.

He was an amazing actor - one of a kind and he will be missed. 2016 is being a real jerk taking all these people away from us.

I’m a big wheel in this town

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Not any more bub - from the New York Post:

Anthony Weiner sexted busty brunette while his son was in bed with him
This is baby-sitting — Anthony Weiner-style.

While his wife, Huma Abedin, travels the country campaigning for Hillary Clinton, the disgraced ex-congressman has been sexting with a busty brunette out West — and even sent her a lurid crotch shot with his toddler son in the picture, The Post has learned.

The stay-at-home cad shot the revealing photo while discussing massage parlors “near my old apartment” shortly after 3 a.m. on July 31, 2015, a screenshot of the exchange shows.

Weiner was clearly aroused by his conversation with the 40-something divorcee when he abruptly changed the subject.

“Someone just climbed into my bed,” Weiner wrote.

“Really?” she responded.

Weiner then hit “Send” on the cringe-inducing image, which shows a bulge in his white, Jockey-brand boxer briefs and his son cuddled up to his left, wrapped in a light-green blanket.

The woman lives on the West coast somewhere but Wiener offered to take her out to dinner in NYC:

At one point in their conversation, Weiner offered to take the object of his lust to one of the restaurants co-owned by his younger brother, Jason.

“Lets get together. I’m a big wheel in this town,” Weiner wrote.

And from the London Daily Mail:

Humiliated Huma FINALLY dumps sexting Weiner: Hillary aide separates from husband just hours after it is revealed he sent photo of his crotch while their four-year-old son slept beside him
Huma Abedin is separating from her husband Anthony Weiner in the wake of his latest sexting scandal.

The Clinton campaign manager released a statement on Monday morning just hours after the New York Post reported that Weiner had been sending lewd texts to another woman behind her back, marking the third time he had been caught in the act in the past five years.

Making matters worse, one of the pictures was of Weiner showcasing his manhood in a pair of boxer briefs while the couple's four-year-old son Jordan lay asleep next to him in bed.

'After long and painful consideration and work on my marriage, I have made the decision to separate from my husband,' said Abedin in a statement.

'Anthony and I remain devoted to doing what is best for our son, who is the light of our life. During this difficult time, I ask for respect for our privacy. '

What a maroon. He brought this on himself.

Woke up to some good news

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Got a phone call that the internet is down at the store.  Heading out in a few minutes to check on that and then into town for the doctor's appointment.

Back in the afternoon...

Just ran into this today - great blog. The DNR administers 5.6 million acres of Washington forest, range, agricultural, aquatic, and commercial lands. Money made from these lands (logging, grazing and fishing) goes to support public schools, state institutions, and county services. Good stuff!

Check out: Ear to the Ground

I am not surprised - from Breitbart:

Exclusive — Lt. Gen. Mike Flynn: Obama, Hillary Ignored Intelligence They Did Not Like About Middle East, Only Wanted ‘Happy Talk’
Retired Lt. Gen. Mike Flynn, who served for more than two years as the director of President Barack Obama’s Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), leveled explosive charges against the President and his former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in an exclusive hour-long interview with Breitbart News Daily on Friday.

Specifically, during an exclusive interview about his book The Field of Fight, Flynn said that Obama and Clinton were not interested in hearing intelligence that did not fit their “happy talk” narrative about the Middle East. In fact, he alleged the administration actively scrubbed training manuals and purged from the military ranks any thinking about the concept of radical Islamism. Flynn argued that this effort by Obama, Clinton and others to reduce the intelligence community to gathering only facts that the senior administration officials wanted to hear—rather than what they needed to hear—helped the enemy fester and grow, while weakening the United States on the world stage.

As the echo chamber self-perpetuates. Can't have anything that disturbs the narrative. Flynn had this to say about Donald Trump:

Flynn noted that the impacts of the choices voters make in this upcoming presidential election will affect the United States for generations—perhaps centuries—to come.

“And Donald Trump is not doing this for Donald Trump,” Flynn said. “Donald Trump is not doing this for the next four years. Donald Trump is doing this for the next 40, or the next 400, years. I have children, I have grandchildren, I have a son who has served overseas in the combat zones three times. I have a couple of grandchildren. My God, I want those grandchildren to grow up in a country that is recognizable to those of us that are in this country today. Right now, it’s starting to become unrecognizable and if we continue down the path that this administration has set over the past eight years—and that includes the path that Hillary Clinton was part of setting—we are going to find ourselves waking up one day in America saying ‘this is not America anymore. This is not what we were founded upon.’ Frankly, in order to keep that belief system that we have, we have to sort of fight for it and we’re going to have to fight for it overseas, and we’re going to have to fight for it here in the homeland and the way we do it here in our country is we do it at the voting booth. People have got to get out and vote.”

An excellent choice for Secretary of State or Defense. John Bolton would be another excellent choice for Sec. State (if I were the King for a few years).

Brexit - repercussions

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Everyone was wringing their hands and saying that Britain's exit from the European Union would be a disaster. It was. For the EU.

All of the numbers coming in from England are very good - today from This is Money:

400,000 new jobs: the Brexit bonanza goes on against the tide of 'Project Fear' 
One of Britain’s largest recruitment firms said the employment market has boomed since the EU referendum with an extra 30,000 new jobs on its books since the Brexit vote.

In the eight weeks following June 23, there were 400,000 new jobs posted on Reed’s website – 30,000 higher than the same period in 2015 and an increase of 8 per cent.

8% is not a bad number at all - the USA just released its numbers for the second quarter and it put us at 1.1% growth which is actually not at all good considering that we have about 6% real inflation so our real growth is still a negative number - thank's stimulus, cash for clunkers, shovel-ready jobs, etc...

Rope Trick

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Performed by Mac King

So much for the forecast - rain

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Got a nice gentle rainfall going on outside. Forecast didn't have it until Tuesday - this is a real treat.

Wonderful news from India

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Both articles are from The Hindu:

First - ISRO successfully test-fires scramjet engine

The Advanced Technology Vehicle (ATV), a sounding rocket (research rocket) with a solid booster carrying advanced scramjet engines, was successfully flight-tested from the launch pad of the Sathish Dhawan Space Centre, also known as Sriharikota Range (SHAR), at Sriharikota on Sunday.

This first experimental mission of Indian Space Research Organisation is aimed at the realisation of an Air Breathing Propulsion System which uses hydrogen as fuel and oxygen from the atmosphere air as the oxidiser.

And a bit more:

With this, India became the fourth country to demonstrate the flight testing of a scramjet engines. This mission is a milestone for ISRO’s future space transportation system.

This greatly reduces the launch weight of the rocket as conventional rockets carry liquid oxygen with them - the scramjet uses atmospheric oxygen once the rocket reaches proper speed (couple hundred miles/hour).

Second - Young grads aim to land a robot on the moon

When young college graduates John K. John and Karan Vaish decided to look out for work, they did not choose conventional jobs like working in an IT services company. Instead, the graduates, who are in their early twenties, decided to pursue their passion and use their skills for an audacious project of building a privately-funded spacecraft capable of soft landing on the moon by December 2017.

The duo is now part of Team Indus run by Bengaluru-based aerospace start-up Axiom Research Labs. It is the only Indian team competing for the $30 million Google Lunar XPrize (GLXP).

To win the prize, Team Indus has to place on the moon’s surface a robot that explores at least 500 metres and transmits high-definition video and images back to Earth.

And this is really cool:

“Eighty per cent of our team is less than five years out of college,” said Rahul Narayan, Team Indus fleet commander in an interview. The young team is helping build the lunar lander and a rover. These would be carried by Indian Space Research Organisation's (ISRO) launch system that would blast into space on a 15-day voyage to the moon. By the time the spacecraft reaches the lunar surface it would have covered about 238,900 miles.

That would be wonderful to start on such a big project so soon out of school. Much more at both links.

Great new work from DJ Shadow

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Always liked his stuff - here he is with Run The Jewels - Nobody Speak

Hat tip to BoingBoing for the link.

Says DJ Shadow: "We wanted to make a positive, life-affirming video that captures politicians at their election-year best. We got this instead.”

Moron of the year - Raymond Mazzarella

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Meet Raymond Mazzarella - from Moosic, Pennsylvania station WNEP:

Angered over Sap, Man Cuts Down Tree, Sending It onto His Own Apartment House
A man in Luzerne County cut down his neighbor's tree over the weekend because he thought it was ruining his car. The tree ended up hitting his own apartment house.

Police said Raymond Mazzarella grabbed a chainsaw and cut down the tree in his neighbor's yard Saturday afternoon. The tree sat in his neighbor's yard, but it had branches above his parking space. Those branches would drip sap onto his car. When he cut through the 36-inch wide trunk, the tree fell onto part of his own apartment building.

“He decided it was the best thing to do, to get rid of the tree, where he thought it was going to go, I don't know,” said Terry Best, a Pittston Township code enforcement officer.

Authorities condemned the building on Oak Street in Pittston Township, and five people have to find new places to stay.

And the story is not over yet:

Police said Mazzarella was being checked out at a hospital. Upon his release Monday afternoon, a neighbor saw Mazzarella trespassing near the apartment house and called police. When the neighbor confronted him, Mazzarella punched him. The neighbor pulled out a stun gun to protect himself. Mazzarella then started hitting him with a baseball bat.

Mazzarella is charged with assault and harassment and is locked up in the Luzerne County jail on $10,000 bail.

The tree was growing there before this idiot was even born - he shouldn't have parked his car there if there was a sap problem.


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It has been a very dry summer and there are several large wildfires burning (InciWeb) (Washington Smoke Information) - one is prompting evacuation from the towns of Levenworth and Peshastin. From Seattle station KIRO

Firefighters working to contain wildfire near Leavenworth
A wildfire raging in central Washington threatened several homes and prompted officials to order evacuations Saturday.

Sunday morning, firefighters were still working to contain the wildfire. Officials with the Chelan County Fire District 3 say the fire is at an estimated 25 percent contained.

The State Fire Marshal's Office said in a statement late Saturday that the Chelan County blaze had burned about 400 acres and is growing. At least 170 homes were under evacuation Saturday night

Here are the facebook pages for Chelan County Fire District 3 and Chelan County Emergency Management

Around February everyone here hates the rain and wishes it would go away forever but now, we sure could use a couple inches. Forecast is for chance showers Tuesday evening but nothing like what we need.

A bunch of twits

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From Seattle station KIRO:

Protesters block coal train in Bellingham
A fossil fuel resistance group blocked a coal train in Bellingham, Washington, Saturday as part of an ongoing campaign against fossil fuels.

Protestors raised a tripod structure in the middle of a rail bridge crossing Mud Bay south of Bellingham. Trains have been stopped since early in the afternoon.

Organizers of the blockade said they believe fossil fuels should be stopped in order to avoid global warming.

For decades, Bellingham has been in the sights of the fossil fuel industry. Activists expressed ongoing efforts to keep fossil fuel transportation out of the city.

And I bet these morons all have iPhones and wear polyester. Carbon is our friend and CO2 is plant food. Silly hippies...

Another late morning

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Slept ten hours last night - feels really good. Dealing with a foot infection but seeing the Doc tomorrow.

Heading out for coffee and stop at the store for a while.

Quiet night on the intarwebs

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Nothing much happening - playing in the radio room with one of the Raspberry Pi computers, trying a few different versions of Linux and playing around with the Python scripting language. I had been using Lua which I really like and it serves as the backbone to a couple programs I already use. Python is really popular with the RPi group so learning that. Nice that the Pi's can reboot so fast - been doing that a lot...

Aurora Borealis

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Photographed in Iceland - gorgeous stuff:

Photographer's website is here: OZZO Photography - browse through his portfolio, he has a nice eye and does a lot of different kinds of photography..

Nothing happening today

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All is quiet out in the interwebs - spent the day working on a couple projects. Dinner in a half hour or so - the last of the white bean/chicken chilli. Cooking a flank steak too so that will be ready for shredded beef BBQ tomorrow.

A new movie - Hugo Chávez

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Yawn... From the Miami Herald:

Hugo Chávez vs. Hugo Chávez: Venezuela in race to put leader's life on film
It’s socialism v. capitalism, north v. south, Hugo Chávez v. Hugo Chávez — at least on the small screen.

Cash-strapped Venezuela announced this week that it’s making a movie and a television series based on the life of late President Chávez to compete against commercial projects already in the works.

In May, California-based Sony Pictures Television said it was making “El Comandante,” a series based on the controversial leader who succumbed to cancer in 2013.

“No trans-national is going to come here and disfigure our Commander Hugo Chávez,” President Nicolás Maduro said Wednesday. “We’re going to put together a team of filmmakers, writers, script-writers, historians — a good team.”

Speaking at the launch of a Chávez biography, Maduro said he wanted the twin biopics done as soon as possible.

“We want this now,” he said, “by tomorrow.”

This will be fodder for all kinds of overdubs - much like the Hitler in the bunker scene from Downfall which has been wonderfully re-subtitled

I wonder if the administration even has the money to finance this film. In other news - from ABC News:

Venezuelan Police Jail Top Activist in Pre-Dawn Transfer
A prominent Venezuelan opposition leader has been jailed again after intelligence agents picked him up at his home before dawn, a brazen move that the government said was necessary to prevent acts of violence but which has alarmed the opposition and human rights groups.

Very curious

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It is not nice to screw with very rich people. They can hire people to turn around and screw with you.

Case in point - George Soros - the website DC Leaks posted a bunch of internal papers leaked from his organizations. Now that website is offline.

Good thing we have the Wayback Machine: 63 URLs have been captured for this domain

Nothing today

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Slept in quite late - been dealing with an persistent infection in my left foot so my body needed the rest. Have an appointment with the doctor on Monday.

Coffee and then working at home.

The heat wave has broken which is wonderful - take care of some things around the farm.

Our government will fix it

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From Red Panels:


Anyone remember when the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) was relavent in the real world? Me neither. Just a bunch of trust-fund babies hanging out in the Colombian jungles trying to "organize" rural farmers who just wanted to be left the fsck alone.

They are throwing in the towel after fifty years of irrelevance - from China's Xinhua News Service:

Colombia, FARC announce final peace agreement, ending over 50 years of conflict
HAVANA, Aug. 24 (Xinhua) -- After four years of peace talks, the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) finalized their peace agreement on Wednesday.

Of course, it is dateline Havana, Cuba - they met there in another stellar example of how Communism fails.

This marks an end to the five-decade long conflict in Colombia which left hundreds of thousands of people dead and millions displaced.

Very few world leaders ever get a chance to declare the end to a long and painful conflict. That opportunity fell to Colombia's President Juan Manuel Santos who addressed the nation after the deal was signed.

"Today, I speak to you with a deep emotion and great happiness. Today marks the end of suffering and pain, the end of the tragedy of war. On Aug. 24, 2016...this national hope has become reality," said a jubilant Santos.

"We have reached a final, complete and definite agreement to put an end to the war of the FARC," he added.

According to the president, "the FARC will cease to exist and will become a political movement without guns."

Hundreds of thousands of people dead - why does Communism always have such a high death toll - this is supposed to be an enlightened form of government. Looking at the grand picture, Communism is directly responsible for one hundred million deaths. Either out and out murders or murder by starvation and/or stupid policies.

Its little cousin Socialism does not have that good a track record either...

The poor people at the State Department must be horribly overworked. From the Associated Press:

Seven months after a federal judge ordered the State Department to begin releasing monthly batches of the detailed daily schedules showing meetings by Hillary Clinton during her time as secretary of state, the government told The Associated Press it won't finish the job before Election Day.


 Its lawyers said in a phone conference with the AP's lawyers that the department now expects to release the last of the detailed schedules around Dec. 30, weeks before the next president is inaugurated.

Well yeah - they must be overworked - that is why it is taking them so long to do the work of a few keystrokes on a computer. What else could it be?

The schedules drew new attention this week after the AP analyzed the ones released so far. The news agency found that more than half the people outside the government who met or spoke by telephone with Clinton while she was secretary of state had given money - either personally or through companies or groups - to the Clinton Foundation.

If this was a Bush family member, the media would be having a field day. Why the silence? What is in the rest of those calendars?

Thank you Mostly Cajun

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The link is appreciated!

I have been in the same boat including one computer lab where the HVAC was built by a certain German company. When the air conditioning failed (which it did almost every month), the temps would spike into the high 90's in ten minutes. This was a largish room with three thousand small computers networked together. These machines simulated client load against large transaction servers. Had some fun large servers move through the lab.

Interesting direction - James Dyson

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From Forbes:

Inside Billionaire James Dyson's Reinvention Factory: From Vacuums To Hair Dryers And Now Batteries
DRESSED IN A BLUE POLKA-DOT OXFORD AND STRIPED REEBOK SNEAKERS, James Dyson abruptly veers off a paved path that cuts through his company’s 56-acre compound. The beanpole-thin 69-year-old billionaire pushes his way into some shrubbery and presses his nose right up to the reflective glass that encases his new, top-secret laboratory, a sleek two-story cube that looks like it was beamed directly from Santa Clara to the Cotswolds. To his delight, he can’t make out what his engineers are doing inside. “I hope they are working,” he says, chuckling.

In reality, it’s move-in day at this brand-new $200-million-plus research facility, and on the other side of the glass dozens of young engineers are unpacking their gear and settling into their quarters. Their job at D9, as the building is cryptically known, is to experiment fearlessly, fail constantly and document those failures in company-issued black-and-yellow notebooks, which form the basis for still more experiments, still more failures–and also a corporate sideline in patent litigation. Very rarely this unending cycle of failure results in a revolutionary new product: the bagless vacuum cleaner (5 years, 5,127 prototypes), the 360 Eye robot (17 years, 1,000-plus prototypes) and the Supersonic hair dryer (4 years, 600 prototypes). But those successes add up: Dyson’s 58 products generated $2.4 billion in sales last year and an estimated $340 million in net profits, even after Dyson reinvested 46% of the company’s Ebitda in R&D, more than rivals such as Electrolux and Techtronic. Dyson owns 100% of the company, which is worth some $4.8 billion.

I bought a small Dyson hand-held and was blown away by the quality and performance. When our big vaccuum died, I bit the bullet at Costco and spent the $600 for the top Dyson unit with the idea that I could always return it if performance wasn't acceptable. Performance was amazing - I like a clean house but the new Dyson was picking tons of crap out of my supposedly clean carpet.

What is James looking into with this new R&D building?

But Dyson’s biggest bet is on batteries. In his view the current rechargeable lithium-ion (li-ion) batteries that power most of the world’s gadgets (including his own) don’t hold a charge long enough and need to be safer (they occasionally catch fire). True to his nature, rather than incrementally improve existing li-ion technology Dyson is forging a new path: experimenting with solid-state li-ion batteries that use ceramics. To this end Dyson made the first acquisition in the company’s history in October 2015, spending $90 million for Sakti3, a battery startup in Ann Arbor, Mich. And that’s just the beginning. Dyson vows to spend $1.4 billion building a battery factory and investing in R&D over the next five years, a huge gamble for a company its size. But Dyson is undeterred, claiming that soon it will be making the world’s longest-lasting, most reliable batteries, taking dead aim at the global li-ion battery market, which research firm Lux estimates at $40 billion. “Batteries are quite exciting and sexy things,” Dyson says.

A fun three-page read. Great insight into how Dyson thinks.

Suck it up hippie - the truth hurts. From Phys-Org:

Biofuels increase, rather than decrease, heat-trapping carbon dioxide emissions: study
A new study from University of Michigan researchers challenges the widely held assumption that biofuels such as ethanol and biodiesel are inherently carbon neutral.

Contrary to popular belief, the heat-trapping carbon dioxide gas emitted when biofuels are burned is not fully balanced by the CO2 uptake that occurs as the plants grow, according to a study by research professor John DeCicco and co-authors at the U-M Energy Institute.

The study, based on U.S. Department of Agriculture crop-production data, shows that during the period when U.S. biofuel production rapidly ramped up, the increased carbon dioxide uptake by the crops was only enough to offset 37 percent of the CO2 emissions due to biofuel combustion.

The researchers conclude that rising biofuel use has been associated with a net increase—rather than a net decrease, as many have claimed—in the carbon dioxide emissions that cause global warming. The findings are scheduled to be published online Aug. 25 in the journal Climatic Change.

Besides, it takes more energy to distill the Ethanol than the Ethanol will yield as fuel. The whole thing is a Federally funded give-away to ag business Archer Daniels Midland and to corn growers everywhere.

Quote of the day

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Diplomacy is the art of telling people to go to hell in such a way that they ask for directions.
--Winston Churchill

Raspberry Shake

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Very cool idea. I ordered a couple Raspberry Pi single-board computers two months ago and have been playing with them - a lot of fun! The reason was for an amateur radio project but I am interested in several branches of science and geology is a major one.

Just ran into Raspberry Shake - a full fledged seismograph using a Raspberry Pi for the data processing and user interface. They had run a Kickstarter campaign and blew past their wished-for funding and are now in full production. From their website:

Raspberry Shake Shop is live now!
Raspberry Shake is a professional grade personal seismograph. It uses a geophysical sensor coupled to a modern digitizer and ARM processor that stacks onto any of the Raspberry Pi boards.

About Raspberry Shake
Raspberry Shake is novel seismograpgh that can:

    • Record earthquakes magnitude 2 and up within a radius of 50 miles.
    • Record earthquakes magnitude 4 and up in a radius of 250 miles.
    • Record earthquakes of larger magnitudes farther away but it will miss some of the subtleties and some of the lower frequencies.
    • Share data with seismic observatories world wide in standard format.
    • Show all activity for the last week.
    • Send alarms and warnings to your cell phone.
    • See and plot the data from any other Raspberry shake.

It outputs the standard file format for seismographs and the data can plug into the world-wide network of stations.

Needless to say, one of these is coming out here to live with me. I'll need to sink a concrete pier but since the house is built on a stone outcropping, this will not be a difficult task - some cinder blocks and I already own a cement mixer - an afternoon of shovelwork and a couple bags of RediMix will do it. The hardware will live out in the radio room. The cost was reasonable - the sensor plus the signal conditioning circuit board (this is what plugs into the Rasp Pi) and a memory card with the required software and a copy of the guy's book was right around $200.

Worst case scenario it will become Rocky's favorite scratching post and my unit will be constantly sending out data about Mag 9 quakes happening in our area...

Back from town - bill paying, etc.

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Needed to do a quick trip to the bank as I had a couple of large bills this month (homeowners insurance and credit card) Did some grocery shopping as well.

Fixing the last of the white bean/chicken chili for dinner tonight with the last of the guacamole and some chips. Got into the 90's in town - 87.1°F at the farm and down to 48.2° last night. Forecast is for clouds to move in and showers Sunday night - the precip will be a relief for everyone.

Coffee and paying some bills

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Heading out for coffee and to the office to pay some bills. More later. Supposed to be warm again today but some showers moving in over the weekend.

Dangerous place

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I love music as a hobby - play keyboards and synth but I also record and microphones are always a weak link in the chain. Someone just turned me on to this place:

micparts, aka, is based in Sonoma County, California, with additional technical staff in Los Angeles. 

The company's mission is to provide high-quality components and kits for DIY audio enthusiasts. We've analysed the best microphones in the world, and found ways to provide circuits and capsules that deliver the same tone and superior performance specifications -- at a fraction of the price of vintage gear.

They are reproducing the sought-after "vintage mics" with what seems to be great success. A Neumann U-87 sells for around $4,000 in decent condition. Their S-87 microphone sells for $569. Not buying anything today - already have a couple of nice mics but something to keep in mind...

Nigel Farage's Speech from yesterday

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Just found a video of it - excellent:

It is so wonderful to see people waking up around the world - time for us to do this.

About those Epi-Pens

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Another interesting bit from U.S. Uncut:

Big Pharma’s dirty secret: EpiPen was developed entirely with taxpayer money
While Mylan Pharmaceuticals is cashing in on the EpiPen price hikes, the inventor of the life-saving device, who made it for the public, died in obscurity.

Sheldon Kaplan, who was an engineer for NASA before inventing the EpiPen, lived a humble, middle-class lifestyle. His surviving family members say he was never paid royalties for the device he invented, and never became famous for designing a product now used by millions.

“He was not famous; he was not wealthy,” Kaplan’s 42-year-old son Michael told the Tampa Bay Times. “And I don’t think he would’ve liked to be. I don’t think he expected that.”

After working at NASA, Kaplan started working for Survival Technology, Incorporated in Bethesda, Maryland. Kaplan sought to create a device intended to quickly inject a user suffering from anaphylaxis — a potentially fatal allergic reaction — with an emergency dose of epinephrine. EpiPens are a lifesaver for anyone allergic to common foods, like peanuts, shellfish, and eggs. Before the EpiPen was invented, anaphylactic shock had to be treated by drawing epinephrine from a bottle with a syringe, which was too time-consuming.

In 1973, when Kaplan was finalizing the design concept for the EpiPen, he was approached by the U.S. Department of Defense, which was looking for a device that could quickly inject an easily deliverable antidote for nerve gas. Kaplan’s design was for a device that a person could easily stick into one’s thigh, prompting a spring-loaded mechanism to push a needle containing life-saving medicine into the user’s bloodstream.

And it gets better - a lot better:

However, for Mylan Pharmaceuticals, which cornered the patent on the EpiPen in 2007, the life-saving device has made billions for the company. According to Bloomberg, a package of two EpiPens costs $415 in the US after insurance discounts. Comparatively, in France, two EpiPens cost just $85 USD. Mylan CEO Heather Bresch’s salary increased by 671 percent after hiking the price of the EpiPen by 461 percent over the past nine years.

Before her hire as CEO, Bresch — daughter of U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va) — was Mylan’s chief lobbyist. In November of 2013, a bill requiring all public schools to carry EpiPens for students with food allergies was signed into law by President Barack Obama. Over the following three years, as schools nationwide bought EpiPens by the truckload, Mylan implemented double-digit price hikes for the EpiPen every other quarter.

Despite the price hikes, Mylan moved to further maximize its profit margins by engaging in a shady corporate accounting trick known as a tax inversion. In 2014, Mylan reincorporated in the Netherlands to lower its effective tax rate, despite its operational headquarters remaining in Pennsylvania. Despite even her own father saying Mylan’s inversion should be illegal, Bresch defended the inversion in an interview with the New York Times.

All that is wrong with this nation and crony capitalism is summed up here in a few paragraphs. Epinephrine is shelf stable for about three years and dirt cheap to buy - about two dollars for a dose. I fully understand that the company has to make money and there is the cost of product insurance to be covered in case some yahoo pokes their eye out and sues. Still, there is no reason why this should not cost well under $100.

A little bit too close for my liking

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From The Bellingham Herald:

Brush fire burns about 10 acres near Sumas
A brush fire east of Sumas burned about 10 acres on the side of Vedder Mountain Thursday afternoon, Aug. 25.

The fire began near the intersection of Reese Hill and Frost roads in north Whatcom County, said John Gargett, deputy director of emergency management with the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office. Gargett said he believed the fire started at about 1:30 p.m.

“It’s still too early to tell, although it appears that a tree fell across a power line” near the intersection and started the fire, Gargett said at about 4:30 p.m.

About ten miles from me and in a direct path. The grass is slightly crunchy so I turned off the electric fence a week ago. It can cause a small arc when it hits grass and the grass is dry enough now to where it could catch fire. Got to think of everything...

I get it - a dark single-malt is not for everyone. If you do not like it, drink something else - do not demand that the dark single-malt be re-blended for your own insipid tastes.

From Bloomberg:

Whiskey's Next Wave Is Lighter, Mellower, Made for Millennials
On a warm evening in June, the thirsty crowd milling about a Brooklyn event space might have gladly sipped glasses of white wine, or crisp gin & tonics. Instead, all held drams of golden whisky in their hand.

The event was to celebrate the introduction of Toki, a new offering from Japanese whisky maker Suntory, with gentle almond and grapefruit accents and no age statement. It’s just one of a growing number of what we're dubbing “whisper whiskies”—pale-hued, refreshing spirits with a deliberately light, mellow flavor profile, offering an antidote to bold bourbons and brooding, smoky Scotches.

These whiskies span fresh, grassy bottlings from Ireland (Kinahan’s, Tullamore D.E.W.) to heathered Scotches without peat (Compass Box Enlightenment) to Japanese (Toki, Kikori) and American whiskies made with a lighter hand on the oak. All are ideal for drinking during the warm-weather months and into the crisper days of autumn.

They interview a New York City owner of two whiskey bars - Flavien Desoulin:

“They’re kids, and kids like candies. It’s got to be sweet, super-fruity, and light in the body. They don’t want to think about it too much—that’s their attention span. It’s got to seduce them quick, they’re not looking for depth.”

Looks like he knows his market. I wish the kids would take the time to develop the appreciation for the deeper stuff - there are some amazing flavor profiles to be enjoyed in a decent single-malt. Still - all the more for the rest of us...

Facts versus feelings

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I have always been a numbers guy. This comment at Gerard's nails the difference:

For the age 60 and above, the early Boomers and their parents, facts remain very important and feelings, while important, are thought not very reliable. Emotions are to be controlled and overcome, they are not to be a guide.

For post-Boomers, especially those born after 1980 or so, feelings are predominant, and the younger of that group the more important feelings are. This is also the cohort that was raised in the thick of the self-esteem movement, being told they are special (you know, just like everyone else). They received praise and rewards just for showing up (participation trophies, anyone?).

They are very, very heavily into social signaling by where they live and where they vacation and by what their children do. They absolutely dominate their kids, who typically have little choice in what activities they will do and when.

The younger sets of this group, born after the early 90s, have also learned (having been actually taught) that the cult of victimhood is the most important status of all. They are on high alert for reasons to be offended and when they are, it is for slights, real or imagined, that mystify the 60 cohort.

Victimhood demands recompense so there is no hope of forgiveness unless the offender crawls on his belly like a cold reptile to beg for it. But forgiveness is never unconditional. The hatchet may be buried, but the handle protrudes skyward so it can be easy to recover.

It is very much an honor-shame dynamic where all interactions are zero-sum. Where they are on the totem pole if always of concern and they are acutely aware of who is above or below. And woe betide those whom they think are below.

I think of it as the 'Veruca Salt' generation. They are demand oriented. Their magical thinking is that merely because they want something, it should be granted. They react strongly negatively to being asked for facts and logic to support their contention because in their minds, 'I feel very strongly about this so why are you asking for facts?' "

Veruca Salt? Here.

Inquiring minds want to know

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Just the gift for the naturalist in your family:


From Amazon:

Nasco SB49923 Life form Replica, Bucket of Scat
A collection of various Life form, Scat Replicas contained in one bucket! Ideal for nature studies and animal identification projects. Use independently or with animal tracks to better identify wildlife signs in nature. Each replica is a scat of a common North American animal.

A little over a pound of plastic poop. Hat tip to the Terrierman

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