An interesting (if disconcerting) metric

| No Comments

The phrase 'World War 3' has been used on Twitter 21,000 times this last week.

Shades of the Ottoman Empire - especially its decline near World War 1

Stuffed - food coma

| No Comments

The boys have left for town and Lulu is heading upstairs to bed.

I'm going to load the dishwasher, surf for a bit and follow her upstairs. Been sleeping really well (finally) last few days.

Dinner came out perfectly - the Wellington was spot on.


Calm before the storm

| No Comments

Lulu's son and nephew Jimmy are due in an hour.

Everything is prepped and ready. Beef Wellington, oven roasted brussels sprouts and mashed potatoes. The actual cooking time should be about 30 minutes.

Now that is how to build a datacenter

| No Comments

Datacenter's are notorious consumers of electric power - a company in Russia has the right idea.

From Data Center Dynamics:

Russia’s largest data center will be powered by nuclear energy
Russian nuclear power specialist Rosenergoatom has started construction of a massive data center that will serve an existing nuclear power station in the north of the country.

Once complete, the facility in the town of Udomlya could become Russia’s largest data center, consuming up to 80MW to power up to 10,000 racks.

According to the Russian news agency Telecom Daily, around 10 percent of the data center capacity has been reserved for the state-owned company, while the rest will be available to commercial customers.

Rosenergoatom has previously approached Facebook and Google to offer space on the upcoming campus, in order to help the American companies comply with new data residency laws that require all foreign firms to store Russian citizens’ data on Russian soil.

Makes perfect sense - the power is certainly cheap and safe enough.

Excellent stuff - from Patrick Moore at Technocracy:

Former President Of Greenpeace Scientifically Rips Climate Change To Shreds
NOTE: The following is a lecture delivered by Patrick Moore, formerly President of Greenpeace Int’l, to the Institution of Mechanical Engineers in London. He is a vocal critic of faulty science that supports climate-change caused by humans. Since he was a legend in the eco-movement, his current assessment is credible and authoritative.

Should We Celebrate Carbon Dioxide?
My Lords and Ladies, Ladies and Gentlemen.

Thank you for the opportunity to set out my views on climate change. As I have stated publicly on many occasions, there is no definitive scientific proof, through real-world observation, that carbon dioxide is responsible for any of the slight warming of the global climate that has occurred during the past 300 years, since the peak of the Little Ice Age. If there were such a proof through testing and replication it would have been written down for all to see.

The contention that human emissions are now the dominant influence on climate is simply a hypothesis, rather than a universally accepted scientific theory. It is therefore correct, indeed verging on compulsory in the scientific tradition, to be skeptical of those who express certainty that “the science is settled” and “the debate is over”.

But there is certainty beyond any doubt that CO2 is the building block for all life on Earth and that without its presence in the global atmosphere at a sufficient concentration this would be a dead planet. Yet today our children and our publics are taught that CO2 is a toxic pollutant that will destroy life and bring civilization to its knees. Tonight I hope to turn this dangerous human-caused propaganda on its head. Tonight I will demonstrate that human emissions of CO2 have already saved life on our planet from a very untimely end. That in the absence of our emitting some of the carbon back into the atmosphere from whence it came in the first place, most or perhaps all life on Earth would begin to die less than two million years from today.

And a bit of Patrick's history:

Why then did I leave Greenpeace after 15 years in the leadership? When Greenpeace began we had a strong humanitarian orientation, to save civilization from destruction by all-out nuclear war. Over the years the “peace” in Greenpeace was gradually lost and my organization, along with much of the environmental movement, drifted into a belief that humans are the enemies of the earth. I believe in a humanitarian environmentalism because we are part of nature, not separate from it. The first principle of ecology is that we are all part of the same ecosystem, as Barbara Ward put it, “One human family on spaceship Earth”, and to preach otherwise teaches that the world would be better off without us. As we shall see later in the presentation there is very good reason to see humans as essential to the survival of life on this planet.

In the mid 1980s I found myself the only director of Greenpeace International with a formal education in science. My fellow directors proposed a campaign to “ban chlorine worldwide”, naming it “The Devil’s Element”. I pointed out that chlorine is one of the elements in the Periodic Table, one of the building blocks of the Universe and the 11th most common element in the Earth’s crust. I argued the fact that chlorine is the most important element for public health and medicine. Adding chlorine to drinking water was the biggest advance in the history of public health and the majority of our synthetic medicines are based on chlorine chemistry. This fell on deaf ears, and for me this was the final straw. I had to leave.

Much more at the site - worth reading and spreading around. Carbon Dioxide is a vital gas for this planet - the gas of life.

Canada's new leadership

| No Comments

Prime Minister Trudeau is bringing Canadian science back to the stone ages. From the Financial Post:

So much for the science, Trudeau government sticks to pre-determined climate agenda
Apparently the Canadian government is willing to listen to climate scientists again. It seems like just yesterday when government officials feared losing their jobs for talking about science and data that didn’t match the official party line. I can remember not long ago a senior Environment Canada official telling me he was trying to bring some rationality and balance back to the place but feared the Minister would have him fired if he spoke up. And then there was the other government scientist who sent me a binder full of material showing their environmental planning process had been hijacked for ideological reasons because the government was determined to put its hardline climate politics ahead of real-world data.

But enough about the Chretien era. The Tories who followed seemed to take a hands-off process to the climate science scene, letting a thousand flowers bloom, which made sense since most policy decisions have never had much to do with the science anyway. But to some of the old climate warhorses it apparently felt like betrayal.

Now we have a government that insists it is open to science again. So it organized a special climate briefing on November 23 and even put the presentation —by Gregory Flato of Environment Canada and Alain Bourque of Ouranos — on the internet. But, surprise surprise, before the briefing even begins, the PR people have dictated what the conclusions will be: “The scientific evidence is clear: climate change is one of the greatest threats of our time. The Government of Canada recognizes that global temperature increases must be limited to at most two degrees Celsius.”

Stop right there. The “science” does not tell us whether climate change is a greater challenge than, say, terrorism or the national debt, that’s something that citizens and elected officials have to sort out. As for the “two degrees” slogan, this has always been a political construct, it doesn’t emerge from thermodynamics or meteorology.

So it’s starting to look like the old days again, when the science gets heavily torqued to promote a pre-determined policy agenda. The preface goes on: “The Government of Canada takes great pride in the work of all of Canada’s scientists and will continue to feature science work to Canadians.” Huh? I can think of lots of Canadian scientific work on climate that the Government will never listen to, because it doesn’t support the policy agenda.

Sad really - there is so much that could be done with this effort but people simply do not have the ability to see the truth. Classical cultural marxism write large.

The politicians are seen as "doing something about a big scary issue" all the while they will be safely out of office when the butchers bill comes due.

Busy day today

| No Comments

Cooking up a storm... More posting later this afternoon.

And now a word from our sponsor

| No Comments

From the New Yorker:

The Cranberry Sauce Has Something to Say
No, trust me, I get it. I’m the cute one. I’m sweet, I’m red, and I plop out of a can. It’s fun. It’s endearing. It’s hilarious.

But enough is enough. My therapist told me to be direct about my feelings—to really engage with them—so before you all dig in and give your thanks, I would like to say a few things that have been on my mind for a while now. Because damn it, I’m a legitimate part of the meal, and it’s about time I was treated as such.


Plainly put, I’m very, very sad. O.K.? Hurt, humiliated, a little fed up maybe. Whatever you want to call it, something clearly isn’t right here, and we—well, I was about to say we all know it, but judging from the looks on all of your faces, I seem to be the only one who thought there was a problem. Am I correct? Wow. All right. Unbelievable.

There goes a whole year spent planning this moment to a T, but you know what—hey, no problemo. Happy to accommodate. I guess it’s my fault for assuming I was anything more than a glorified dipping sauce to you people.

Look, do you think I don’t see what you see? I’m repulsive. I stick out like a sore thumb. A red, wobbly sore thumb. Plopped down on this table with the ridges from my can still branded into my side, othering me, shaming me—your store-bought freak, your high-caloric Hester Prynne. You could at least slice me and give me an ounce of dignity. But no, that’s life, baby. That’s me: Thanksgiving’s Elephant Man. Just the cold, wet afterthought to a piping-hot feast cooked with patience and love. Here to jiggle for you, to be cut with a spoon, and to silently weep.

God, and to think that I spent years in factories and in boxes and on trucks and on shelves all to be paraded out behind your basted, seasoned, and—let’s be honest—pretty overcooked “delicacies.” For what? For this. You know, I deserve some credit for even being a part of this tradition. To say the odds were against me would be putting it mildly. But I earned this. Because guess what? Deep down, I’m good.

And you know what? You’re not. You’re disgusting. The way you people talk, belch, indulge in your orgies of savory fats. What a feast! What a spread! Oh, the turkey looks divine! Did you make this stuffing yourself? These yams, good heavens! Try the sprouts! Who brought the sweet-potato casserole? Well I am not leaving here without that recipe!

And oh, what is that … cranberry sauce?

Heh - spot on!  I love the stuff. I do a decent home-made version but always serve both kind as the canned stuff is very much its own perfection...

Very curious - from Scientific American:

The Case of the Disappearing Quasars
Astronomers peering across the universe think they’ve caught a dozen quasars—extremely bright and distant objects powered by ravenous supermassive black holes at the centers of ancient galaxies—in a disappearing act. Or at least transitioning into their quiescent and dimmer counterparts: galaxies with starving black holes at their cores. The surprising find has astronomers asking whether these objects are shutting down permanently or simply flickering out for the time being.

Last year Stephanie LaMassa from NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (then at Yale University) discovered the greatest change in luminosity ever detected in a quasar. She was digging through data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey when she found that a quasar had dimmed in brightness by a factor of six in just 10 years. Its spectrum changed, too, from that of a classic quasar to a regular galaxy.

The article continues to cite a bunch of theories but nothing concrete. Curious indeed!

I am reminded of the great Arthur C. Clarke short story: The Nine Billion Names of God

Overhead, without any fuss, the stars were going out.

So... Who do we know is running a modified Mark V Automatic Sequence Computer?

Finally, I do not know if there has been a shift in the Scientific American management but it is nice to see them doing a 'hard science' article instead of the fscking puff-pieces they have been doing for the last fifteen years or so. I used to subscribe but dropped it when they shifted from real science to politically correct talking points. I could go on quite the tirade here but will not.

Cooking up a storm

| No Comments

Got the Wellington prepped and into the fridge for its rest. I should have done it yesterday (power outage) to get the meat fully chilled but I will pop it in the freezer for an hour before the final assembly - should come out just fine.

I did the duxelle layer a bit differently - used roasted hazelnuts instead of chestnuts and added some shallots to the mushrooms. It was a bit wet but I cooked it in the same pan I used to sear the meat so that should pick up some nice flavors.

Tomorrow, wrap with prosciutto, filo dough and then puff pastry. Oven roasting some brussels sprouts and yukon potatoes for a side and a big salad with the last of the garden carrots.

Trimmed enough off the tenderloin that there will be a couple of very nice small steaks - wrap them in bacon and grill lightly.

Finishing off a bowl of left-over beef-barley soup and then out for a beer or two...

Clock Boy

| No Comments

Just wonderful:


How to ski

| No Comments

From our friends to the North - Mountain Equipment Co-op

Good morning!

| No Comments

Actually woke up rested and rarin' to go - that cold took a lot out of me!

Heading out for coffee and then home to start on the Beef Wellington for tomorrow's dinner...

More faster please

| No Comments

I would sooo sign up for a trip if it was under $20K - rocket footage is real, launched and landed yesterday (Nov. 23rd). Capsule with people is animated - not doing that quite yet.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is in back of this company.


| No Comments

Fun parody of a well known action camera video:

Fun and games this morning

| No Comments

Forecast was for high winds and this usually means power outages. Boy howdy! Power went out around 9:00AM, back on at 10:00AM, back off at 11:00AM and stayed off for the rest of the day.

Hung out here until around 4:00PM and then headed into town to get some more fixings for Thanksgiving dinner and dinner in town.

Just got back and the power has been on for about two hours - house is chilly but not bad considering it is below freezing outside.

Surf for a bit and then an early bedtime...

From Bob Gorrell - not familiar with his work but will be following him from now on - he knows his history:


History? This photograph by Elliot Erwitt taken in 1950 in North Carolina:


We came so far and some fools decided to drag us right back to the 1960's again so that they could get a little more power and a little more 'ME!!!' time in the news. Fscking pathetic.

Thank you Bob - you speak Truth to Power

Hey Ahmed Mohamed - I do hope that you enjoy the rest of your life as a narcissistic pariah unemployable in any civilized nation.

The 15 year-old 'clock boy' just cratered his potential for any kind of engineering career in a very spectacular fashion.

From the UK Independent:

Ahmed Mohamed demands $15m compensation and written apology for homemade clock arrest
The family of Ahmed Mohamed, the Texan schoolboy who was arrested after taking a homemade clock to school, has demanded $15m in compensation and written apologies from the local mayor and police chief.

In letters sent on Monday, the lawyers said if the City of Irving and Irving School District did not agree to the apologies and compensation, they would file a civil action.

“Ahmed never threatened anyone, never caused harm to anyone, and never intended to. The only one who was hurt that day was Ahmed, and the damages he suffered were not because of oversight or incompetence,” said the letter to the city authorities.

'Scuuuuuse me - he took the clock from class to class and plugged it in in each classroom. He was asked by one teacher to unplug it and put it away. He refused. The alarm went off startling the teacher. And, there are priors:

From Breitbart:  Ahmed’s Sister Admits School Suspension for Alleged Bomb Threat 3 Years Earlier

From ArtVoice: Reverse Engineering Ahmed Mohamed’s Clock… and Ourselves

From National Review: Ahmed Mohamed Didn’t Build a Clock — and Other Niggling Problems in the Story of Dallas’s Whizkid-of-the-Week

From The Blaze: Before Clock Incident Made Him a Celebrity, Ahmed Mohamed ‘Racked Up Weeks of Suspensions’ and Clashed With Authority

The little punk is basically unemployable from now on - nobody in their right mind would hire an attention-seeking asshat like this regardless of what their GPA is (and in Mo's case, I suspect it is just not that high).

Welcome to Western civilization - we have something called personal responsibility that makes us what we are - great. To bad your culture does not measure up.

#hashtag diplomacy

| No Comments

Something Barry Frank Junior seems to excel at:


From Michael Ramirez

And while we are on the subject of Fatherhood - who is Chelsea Clinton's real father? Despite all of Bill's philandering, he has no offspring. Webb Hubbell is an interesting possibility - certainly in the right place at the right time (here, here and here).

Back from town and stuffed

| No Comments

Back from town - shopping for thanksgiving dinner. Ate at the local new restaurant and the food was excellent as always.

Doing a Beef Wellington for dinner on Thursday - starting the prep tomorrow - salt crust, rinse, dry, sear, hot mustard/horseradish coating, duxelles layer, prosciutto layer and finally a filo dough layer.

Wrap in poly and refrigerate for 24 hours minimum. Unwrap, rewrap with a sheet of puff pastry and into a 425°F oven for 25 minutes or so. The beef will be chilled from the fridge holding it back to medium rare while the puff pastry browns nicely.

Salivating as I type...

November 2015

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30          

Environment and Climate
Cliff Mass Weather Blog
Climate Audit
Climate Depot
Green Trust
Jennifer Marohasy
Planet Gore
Science and Public Policy Institute
Solar Cycle 24
Space Weather
Space Weather - Canada
the Air Vent
Tom Nelson
Watts Up With That?

Science and Medicine
Derek Lowe
Junk Science
Life in the Fast Lane
Luboš Motl
New Scientist
Next Big Future
Ptak Science Books
Science Blog

Geek Stuff
Ars Technica
Boing Boing
Don Lancaster's Guru's Lair
Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories
Hack a Day
Kevin Kelly - Cool Tools
Slashdot: News for nerds
The Register
The Daily WTF

The Argyle Sweater
Chip Bok
Broadside Cartoons
Day by Day
Medium Large
Michael Ramirez
Prickly City
User Friendly
What The Duck

Awkward Family Photos
Cake Wrecks
Not Always Right
Sober in a Nightclub
You Drive What?

Business and Economics
The Austrian Economists
Carpe Diem
Coyote Blog

Photography and Art
Digital Photography Review
James Gurney
Joe McNally's Blog
The Online Photographer

A Western Heart
American Digest
The AnarchAngel
Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler
Babalu Blog
Belmont Club
Bayou Renaissance Man
Classical Values
Cold Fury
David Limbaugh
Defense Technology
Doug Ross @ Journal
Grouchy Old Cripple
Irons in the Fire
James Lileks
Lowering the Bar
Maggie's Farm
Marginal Revolution
Michael J. Totten
Mostly Cajun
Power Line
Questions and Observations
Rachel Lucas
Roger L. Simon
Sense of Events
Sound Politics
The Strata-Sphere
The Smallest Minority
The Volokh Conspiracy
Tim Blair
Weasel Zippers

Gone but not Forgotten...
A Coyote at the Dog Show
Bad Eagle
Steven DenBeste
democrats give conservatives indigestion
Cox and Forkum
The Diplomad
Priorities & Frivolities
Gut Rumbles
Mean Mr. Mustard 2.0
Neptunus Lex
Other Side of Kim
Ramblings' Journal
Sgt. Stryker
shining full plate and a good broadsword
A Physicist's Perspective
The Daily Demarche
Wayne's Online Newsletter

Recent Comments

  • mike: You got that right - someone has even identified the read more
  • Karma: Do you have an update on wasisco's girlfriend who burned read more
  • Larry Boykin: Haggens bought 3 stores in Tucson and closed 2 of read more
  • Lulu Halliday: Amen sister read more
  • mostly cajun: I built a pair of support towers a few years read more

Monthly Archives


OpenID accepted here Learn more about OpenID
Powered by Movable Type 5.2.9