Fun IKEA advertisement

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Great play on The Shining

Illegal immigrants are coming - big-time. From the website for Federal business solicitation:

20141021-bizop.jpg

I posted this as a screen-cap in case they try to slipstream a change. They are expecting 34 million illegal immigrants in the next five years? This will swell the welfare rolls and hamstring our economy.

2001 is being re-released

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First in England on November 28th but here is hoping that it crosses the pond sometime soon.

Trailer? Of course!

 

From The Washington Free Beacon:

Afghan Poppy Cultivation at ‘All-Time High’
Cultivation of the illegal poppy plant in Afghanistan has reached an “all time high” following a $7.6 billion counternarcotics campaign paid for by the United States, according to government oversight investigators.

Despite the spending to combat growth of the poppy plant, which is used to make drugs such as opium and heroin, cultivation has reached an “all time high,” especially in places once declared “poppy free,” according to new report by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR).

“After a decade of reconstruction and over $7 billion in counternarcotics efforts, poppy cultivation levels are at an all-time high,” SIGAR concluded in its report released Wednesday.

The findings have caused concern about the effectiveness of the United States’ efforts to stymie poppy production, SIGAR concluded.

The Afghans are laughing at us behind our backs. Want to stop the drug trade? Buy the crop - pay the farmers to grow the poppies and then outbid all of the other vendors. Use part of the crop for pharmaceuticals and burn the rest. You could do this for a lot less than 7 Billion of our dollars...

From the BBC:

Paralysed man walks again after cell transplant
A paralysed man has been able to walk again after a pioneering therapy that involved transplanting cells from his nasal cavity into his spinal cord.

Darek Fidyka, who was paralysed from the chest down in a knife attack in 2010, can now walk using a frame.

The treatment, a world first, was carried out by surgeons in Poland in collaboration with scientists in London.

A bit more:

The treatment used olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs) - specialist cells that form part of the sense of smell.

OECs act as pathway cells that enable nerve fibres in the olfactory system to be continually renewed.

In the first of two operations, surgeons removed one of the patient's olfactory bulbs and grew the cells in culture.

Two weeks later they transplanted the OECs into the spinal cord, which had been cut through in the knife attack apart from a thin strip of scar tissue on the right. They had just a drop of material to work with - about 500,000 cells.

More at the site - hte BBC article is comprehensive.

More faster please!

The real cost of electricity

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A bit of a blow to those advocating windmills - from Forbes:

Electricity Prices Soaring In Top Wind Power States
Electricity prices are soaring in states generating the most wind power, U.S. Energy Information Administration data show. Although U.S. electricity prices rose less than 3 percent from 2008-2013, the 10 states with the highest percentage of wind power generation experienced average electricity price increases of more than 20 percent.

More:

The wind power industry claims switching from conventional power to wind power will save consumers money and spur the economy. However, data from the top 10 wind power states show just the opposite. From 2008-2013 electricity prices rose an average of 20.7 percent in the top 10 wind power states, which is seven-fold higher than the national electricity price increase of merely 2.8 percent.

Heh - truth hurts. All of the alt.energy scams are based on huge taxpayer (your money) subsidies.

Terrorism to the North

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A bit of trouble to the North - from The Toronto Star:

Canadian soldiers run down in possible Quebec terror attack
A 25-year-old Quebec man killed by police after striking two Canadian Forces personnel with his car was known to national anti-terrorism investigators as someone who had taken to radical Islam, the RCMP says.

The individual, who was shot dead following the incident in St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que., was identified by friends as Martin Rouleau. They described him as a struggling entrepreneur and father of a young son who converted to Islam and began distancing himself from his large circle of friends south of Montreal.

For those friends who had tried to reason with him over the last year and a half, the last straw came this summer when they say Rouleau was stopped by border authorities trying to leave Canada to fight abroad with the Islamic State.

A bit more:

There, a man later identified as Rouleau rammed two Canadian military personnel with his vehicle, a Nissan Altima. The incident left one of them with minor injuries, but sent the other to hospital with life-threatening injuries.

As Rouleau fled from the scene, La Presse reported, he called a 911 dispatcher and explained that he was “acting in the name of Allah.”

All of this happened with local police chasing him along one of the town’s main thoroughfares and into a residential area, where Rouleau lost control of his vehicle, flipped, and landed upside down in a ditch.

He reportedly emerged from the overturned car with a knife in his hands, a threat that drew the gunfire of police.

More:

“This individual was known to federal authorities including our Integrated National Security Investigations team in Montreal who, along with other authorities, were concerned that he had become radicalized,” RCMP Cpl. David Falls said in a statement.

Disgusting - they knew he was trouble but there was no interdiction. We are at war with the middle-east and our side is doing nothing about it.

le Déluge

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Looks like some heavy rain is headed our way. From local weather nerd Cliff Mass:

Heavy Rain Coming and Windstorm Threat
An atmospheric river, a warm current of large amounts of water vapor, will be approaching our region starting later tomorrow (Tuesday), but it will be coming from a less frequent direction:  the west.  And the result will be the heaviest rainfall to strike our region since last winter.

Time to replenish our renowned water resources!  And a good reason to be glad you don't live in California.   And speaking of parched California, they are going to get a piece of the action.

How much?

Here is the forecast from the UW WRF model for the 72 hours ending 5 AM on Thursday.  Big values (more than 5 inches in the Olympics, North Cascades, and northern Oregon coastal mountains. An inch or two in the lowlands.   Rake the leaves from the drains near your house or apartment!

Batten down the hatches. I am lucky that we live on a sloping pasture - no danger of flooding. The creeks are already high from previous rainfall so it should be fun to watch.

Absolutely brilliant:

Election time zombies

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Must be election time - the dead are rising from their graves. From The Blaze:

Surveillance Video Apparently Catches Guy Doing Something at the Ballot Box That Left Republican Monitor Stunned
An Arizona county party official said he saw a man stuffing “hundreds” of ballots into the ballot box and later told a local news outlet the entire incident was caught on surveillance video. 

“A person wearing a Citizens for a Better Arizona T-shirt dropped a large box of hundreds of early ballots on the table and started stuffing the ballot box as I watched in amazement,” said A.J. LaFaro, chairman of the Maricopa County Republican Party.

The Maricopa County GOP chairman provided the Arizona Daily Independent with the following account of what happened during the Aug. 26 primary election cycle:

Guy: “What’s your problem?”
LaFaro: “I don’t have a problem.”
Guy: “Stop watching me. You’re annoying me.”
LaFaro: “One of your ballots isn’t sealed.”
Guy: “It’s none of your business. What’s your name?”
LaFaro: “I’m the chairman of the Maricopa County Republican Party. What’s yours?”
Guy: “Go f*** yourself. I don’t have to tell you who I am.”

LaFaro said he later submitted a public information request and obtained this surveillance video from 12:30- 1:30 on Aug. 25 (audio unavailable):

If any of those ballots have Republican candidates selected, I will eat my hat. This is election fraud and the Arizona Secretary of State should prosecute that individual until their ears bleed.

Rain rain go away

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Did the usual store buying run today and the rain just let loose. Fortunately, it lasted only about an hour so I was able to do most of the shopping run under dry skies but the first three stops resulted in some pretty wet product.

More of same in the forecast - ugghhhhh...

Sugar - more bad news

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Sugar is turning out to be much worse for us than initially thought. The article addresses soda pop but it is the sugar that is the villain here.

From the Toronto Sun:

Drinking pop daily can shorten your life: Study
Drinking sugar-sweetened pop could take years off your life, a new U.S. study has found.

Researchers at the University of California — San Francisco found study participants who drank pop daily had shorter telomeres — the protective units of DNA that cap the ends of chromosomes in cells — in white blood cells. Short telomeres have been associated with chronic aging diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and some forms of cancer.

The researchers calculated daily consumption of a 20-ounce pop is associated with 4.6 years of additional biological aging. The effect on telomere length is comparable to that of smoking, they said.

"This finding held regardless of age, race, income and education level," researcher Elissa Epel said in a press release.

Only adults participated in the study, but Epel said "it is possible that soda consumption is associated with telomere shortening in children."

I will be following this with a measure of skepticism - if 20oz. of soda cut 4.6 years off a person's life, I would be dead with all the soda I have consumed. Still, a link between sugar and telomere shortening is major - telomere's are one of the best known factors in aging and you want them as long as possible...

From the Beeb:

Major fire at gas-fired Didcot B power station
Fire crews have been battling a major blaze at Didcot B Power Station, Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue has said.

At the height of the fire, which broke out in one of the cooling towers, 20 fire appliances were are at the scene

Energy company RWE power, which owns the gas-burning power station, has said the fire is now under control and there have been no injuries.

Police have warned local people to stay indoors and close their doors and windows.

The plant was shut down and all areas isolated before crews moved in to tackle the fire.

This plant supplies about 3% of England's electrical power. It is going to be out of commission for at least six months and with winter coming, England is going to have limited resources. A lot of time, the grids there and here are within a few percent of being overloaded in Winter with the demand for heating.

At least, it will drive home the stupidity of the intermittent and expensive alt.energy scams- wind and solar...

Back from the memorial service

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It was very well attended - about 300 people.

Both of the deceased had been loggers since high-school (they were in their 50's) and the logging community is a very tight community. Saw lots of people we knew and made some new friends.

I love this place...

Off to the memorial service

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Packing up the PA system and borrowed a video projector.

Death sucks when it comes too early and unexpected.

Happy 60th birthday - transistor radio

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Sixty years ago today, Regency Electronics and Texas Instruments put the first transistor radio on the market.

From EDN:

TI announces 1st transistor radio, October 18, 1954
Texas Instruments announced plans for the Regency TR-1, the first transistor radio to be commercially sold, on October 18, 1954.

The move was a major one in tech history that would help propel transistors into mainstream use and also give new definition to portable electronics.

TI was producing germanium transistors at the time, but the market had been slow to respond, comfortable with vacuum tubes.

However, the use of transistors instead of vacuum tubes as the amplifier elements meant that the device was much smaller, required less power to operate, and was more shock-resistant. Transistor use also allowed "instant-on" operation because there were no filaments to heat up.

As to mobility, the typical portable tube radio of the 1950s was about the size and weight of a lunchbox, and was powered by several heavy, non-rechargeable batteries. A transistor radio could fit in a pocket, weighed half a pound, and was powered by a single compact 9V battery.

There is a great tribute site at Regency TR-1 Transistor Radio History

A big tip of the hat to The Silicon Graybeard

So true - Obama at his best

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20141018-ebola.jpg

Swiped from here.

First, there is a ship adrift in perilous waters - from the Vancouver Sun:

Tow line to disabled Russian ship snaps but help at hand, crew safe: rescue centre
The tow line attached to a disabled Russian cargo ship off the British Columbia coast has snapped, setting the ship adrift once again.

But Lt. Greg Menzies of the Canadian Forces' Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre says there are three Canadian and U.S. Coast Guard ships on scene and three helicopters on stand-by.

He says the 10 crew members remain on board in no danger and the vessel is about 45 kilometres from shore.

A bit more:

The Simushir lost power Thursday night in rough seas off Haida Gwaii while sailing from Washington state to Russia.

Freshly bunkered so there are 20,000 or more gallons of fuel oil on board. We had high winds on the coast two nights ago and there was a danger that it could have broken up on rocks.

Second - crimes and misdemeanors in a casino - also from the Vancouver Sun:

Millions in suspicious transactions flowed through area casinos in 3-month period, mostly in $20 bills
Gamblers flocked into four Vancouver-area casinos over a recent three-month period hauling bags of $20 bills that added up to millions of dollars in suspicious transactions, according to information provided by the provincial Finance Ministry in response to a freedom of information request from the CBC.

The Edgewater Casino in the Plaza of Nations in Vancouver alone reported $5,242,090 in unusual transactions from March 20 to June 21.

CBC reported that $2.5 million in suspicious transactions occurred at New Westminster’s Starlight Casino, while $24 million was flagged at Richmond’s River Rock Casino.

Police were rarely, if ever contacted, according to the incident reports.

Some more:

On June 1, a patron showed up at the same casino with $100,000 all in $20 bills — a currency frequently used in street-level drug transactions.

In some cases, patrons bought in and cashed out without playing or with very minimal playing.

There were reports of chips being exchanged in washrooms and of bundles of $100 bills being exchanged under tables.

When gamblers use cash transactions at casinos, the source of the money can’t be traced. Gangsters are suspected of using the system to launder dirty money by buying in, then not necessarily betting and cashing out the credit, claiming the income as winnings.

For my store, I am an authorized Western Union agent and we have to do ongoing training for money laundering. They are very careful about this. Someone at the casinos should have raised a flag when this started happening.

At the very least, they could have run a nice little sting operation and gotten a few scumbags off the streets...

Quiet day today

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Spending a quiet day at home working on some stuff.

A friends memorial service is tomorrow and I will be doing the PA and video - spent a couple hours Wednesday scanning old photos. Getting the equipment ready.

Working from home - with cats

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About right...

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