Another Secular Humanists Throws it at Islam

Watch the video here.

Hopefully this woman isn’t in a place where the fundamentalists can get at her. But I applaud her for going on the tube and tellings the Muslims to keep their shit in check.

Of course we in the U.S. have to do the same to the Christian churches. Be they Catholic, Baptists, Methodist, etc. They too are pushing their agenda on society and must be stopped.

iPods and MP3 Players Causing Hearing Loss

No specific link but I’ve seen it all over the web. I type this as I’ve got a set of earbuds plugged into my head.

Let it be said that I should be stone deaf by now. Been keeping the headphones and earbuds on for thirty years of my life so far. I’d fall asleep listening to WBRU 360, Kiss 108, or WBOS more often than not. I’d do homework with headphones on, I’d pretty much do everything with headphones on.

Now it’s the little MP3 player. Almost always on. My life needs a soundtrack and I don’t want to share it with the world. So headphones it is.

Family Sized Calamari

Now this is one sure to please. It’s the biggest specimen of Mollusca Cephalopoda and it’s only a baby.

Imagine the Calamari you could make out of this. Hmmmmmm.

And if this is just a baby, there are some true monsters roaming the deep that we haven’t seen yet. Lovely.

While I do like Calamari on occasion, I’m more a fan of Mollusca Pelecypoda, namely clams or as we in Rhode Island call them, Quahogs.

Movie: Crash

Just finished watching Crash. The movie sums up the good and bad in all of us. We all have our own fears and anger that course through us. Why can’t we just stop and tell our brothers and sisters that we love them. Why can’t we see past skin color, nationality, fat, skinny, tall, short, man, woman, gay or straight. I’ve left out a bunch of things we need to see past because at the moment it would take far too much space.

I think part of it is because we’ve become so disconnected from each other. Busy lives lead to insular feelings. A general disconnectedness from the universe, so to speak. Sure, I have my electronic world and the physical world. In both I try to be as fair as I can. But sometimes I catch a learned bias and it surprises me that its still way down inside me, a part of me.

All I can tell you is that if you haven’t yet seen the movie, see it. It enraged me, saddened me and then left me with the hope that, to quote Donnie Hathaway, “…someday we’ll all be free.” Free from our learned prejudices, free from opression in any of its forms, free from fear, free from jealousy.

Oh Nice – Gasoline From Cow Dung

This is interesting. When one considers the amount of bovine effluvia here in the United States you can see the promise.

In the case of the Japanese, they generate 551,155 tons of cow dung annualy. At a rate of 666 pounds of dung to one gallon of gasoline, this would net the Japanese 1,656,321 gallons of gasoline. However the process large quantities of heat and pressure. I suppose you could always use the methane from the cow dung to generate the power necessary to do that.

Now imagine for a moment how much cow dung we generate here in the United States. Not to mention the bovine effluvia being expelled from the mouths of politicians in the United States. Ok, that tongue in cheek comment aside, this really is interesting.

And of course lots of people have been using biodiesel. I think it’s great – cooking oil be it corn, soy, canola or some other oil. And of course TDP (Thermal Depolymerization) takes plastics, turkey offal, etc. and turns it into oil.

We might finally be approaching Type I civilization status. Using all the energy of our planet, but we still need to start harnessing the power of our star to make it all the way there. Solar isn’t quite up to speed, with roughly 30% to 50% efficiency at the moment. But solar power is a long way from what it was in the 1970’s.

Hey, there’s even a company that uses solar power to make beer. How cool is that?

It gets better. How about a home completely off the grid?

Its great – rising fuel prices always fuel innovation. And I for one would love a house off the grid. I bet lots of people would.

Ok – I’ll stop with the treehugger monologue here.

As If Light Pollution Wasn’t Enough

Now we astronomers, both amateur and professional, have to contend with pollution caused by aircraft.

Where I live, light pollution is a pretty big deal. Our brilliant former mayor, who is now serving a term on a RICO conspiracy charge, wanted to light up the big buildings. So what did everyone do? Uplighting. I’m glad the son of a bitch is in the federal pen. Not so much for the RICO thing, which I consider to be an abuse of law, but for the light pollution his legacy has left us.

But the whole thing saddens me. As a kid I remember being able to lay in my back yard in the city proper, and still see a sky loaded with stars. Now you’re lucky if you can see a few dozen. Every now and then I have to head out to a friend of mines place in Foster in order to see a sky that looks like its been spackled with stars.