Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Just looks like a pile of salt, huh? Things may not be what they seem

What Happens When You Give an Artist 2,200 Pounds of Salt and Five Days?

What Happens When You Give an Artist 2,200 Pounds of Salt and Five Days?

This photo shows what Japanese artist Motoi Yamamoto created out of 2,200 pounds of salt over the course of five days. At first glance it seems like he didn't actually make anything, but look closer and you'll see something lovely.

For a detailed explanation of what the artist created:

Murdoch bets on The Daily


(Reuters) - Rupert Murdoch, among the most ardent defenders of the traditional press, has staked his reputation on a risky bet that for just 14 cents a day he can save the news business with tablet devices like Apple's iPad.

Unlike the News Corp chairman's other newspapers such as the Wall Street Journal or the Times of London, it was not immediately clear who the Daily, News Corp's digital newspaper for the iPad unveiled on Wednesday, is intended to reach.

Wish this would translate to job growth

Dow: Best January in 14 years - MarketWatch

Encouraging news for the US stock market as Dow numbers indicate best January in years

Read more:

Myers-Briggs would say he's introverted, doesn't stand out

Round of applause for the artist who blends into his artwork




For details of his art:

Ground Hog Day ...From Paris

Feb 2nd.  Ground Hog Day.

Great classic movie and a great prediction, landing soft and simple sweet like a butterfly. 

According to Punxsutanwney Phil, we are in for an early spring!

Practical Shoes ...From Paris

There was a beautiful storm yesterday...and I'm not talkin' about the weather in Washington (although Al would be proud--there was indeed a global warming, global cooling, climate changing- completely and deliberately man-made ice storm falling all over DC!)

Robert Plant and Patti Griffin brought leather and lace (she wore the leather dress and he wore the black patent leather pointed shoes) to DAR Constitution Hall, across from the White House. Small gorgeous venue, where Black Dog, I'm In The Mood, Rock and Roll and Tangerine never sounded so good.

Mr Paris reminded me to 'wear practical shoes', as we were in for a long walk, ice, sleet and sloppy streets.

"Did you just meet me?" I inquired with the teasing 33 year patina of our relationship.

Paris?  Oh yeah.  You'll be relieved to know that she wore 'practical' shoes.  Practical shoes packaged in the form of high heels.    

Afraid Bastardi has it right.

FLASHBACK: Dem Sens say decreased snowfall caused by warming...
Bastardi: Shift to Colder Climate Predicted Next 20-30 Years...

24+ INCHES...

Flight cancellations top 5,000 for 2nd day...

Bastardi: This winter is on track to become the coldest for the nation as a whole since the 1980s or possibly even the late 1970s. According to Chief Long Range Forecaster Joe Bastardi, three or four out of the next five winters could be just as cold, if not colder.

He is worried that next winter, for example, will be colder than this one.

Bastardi adds that with the U.S. in the middle of one of its worst recessions in its history and the price of oil in question, he is extremely concerned about the prospect for more persistent cold weather in the coming years putting increased financial hardship on Americans.

"Cold is a lot worse than warm," Bastardi said, "and that's why your energy bill goes up during the winter time: because of the fact that it takes a lot to heat a house."

If you want less of something, increase the cost. Not lower it.

Morning After Pill Linked to Increase in Sexually Transmitted Diseases, UK Study Shows

ScienceDaily (Jan. 31, 2011) — Offering the morning after pill free over the counter has not reduced the number of teenage pregnancies and may be associated with a rise in sexually-transmitted diseases (STIs), according to a report by experts at The University of Nottingham.

Their findings show that, on average, areas operating a pharmacy emergency birth control (EBC) scheme saw an overall increase of five percent in the rate of STIs among teenagers -- 12 per cent in the under-16s age group. The study also found that EBC schemes may actually be associated with a small increase in the number of teens falling pregnant.

Why Teachers need to be easy to fire.

Boy Punished for Taking Eco-Unfriendly Ziploc to School

Isabel Theoret was preparing a sandwich for her 6-year-old son's Kindergarten class one day last week, when he screamed out, "No Mommy! Not a Ziploc!"

The child, who lives with his family in the town of Laval in Quebec, explained that his teacher would exclude him from a contest to win a stuffed teddy bear if he brought an environmentally unfriendly plastic baggie to school.

The end of the M16/M4 era. (This could be the end of the chemical/projection weapon.)

Army Sets Sights on New Rifle

A soldier with an advanced grenade launcher being tested by the Army/Credit: U.S. Army

For the first time in almost 50 years, the U.S. Army wants to replace the standard rifle shouldered by hundreds of thousands of frontline troops around the world.

The service this week advertised its interest in a new weapon that would incorporate futuristic sights and other advances in rifle design and be able to handle improved ammunition.

The gun would potentially supplant the M4 carbine, a shorter-barrel version of the M16, the Army's main infantry weapon for decades.

michael ramirez

You read about here, first

US and China in military standoff over space missiles

A Standard Missile being launched from the USS Hopper

WikiLeaks files: America 'threatened' to take military action against China during row over secret arms race in space.

On the night of Feb 20, 2008, Robert Gates, the US Defence Secretary, was on a plane to Hawaii when his telephone rang.

The US and China shot their own satellites out of space

The US and China shot their own satellites out of space

It was a conference call from the Air Force General, Kevin Chilton, the head of US Strategic Command, and Marine General James Cartwright, the vice-chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

They told him the conditions were “ripe” to launch what can now be disclosed was a secret test of America’s anti-satellite weapons, Washington’s first such strike in space for 23 years. That night, the US navy’s Ticonderoga-class cruiser, USS Lake Erie, scored a direct hit on an American spy satellite, known as USA 193. The missile used, a highly sophisticated SM-3, took about three minutes to climb 150 miles above the Earth, where it flew past the satellite before turning back and destroying the target at an impact speed of 22,000mph.

The strike came about a year after the Chinese government had launched its own satellithe attack, which started a secret “space war”, The Daily Telegraph can disclose. For months the two super powers had been engaged in a private and increasingly acrimonious row over China’s use of weapons in space – an international taboo since President Ronald Reagan abandoned the “star wars” programme in the 1980s.

The clash began on Jan 11, 2007, when Beijing shocked the world – including George W Bush’s White House – by destroying a Chinese weather satellite with a ballistic missile.

Washington was particularly concerned about the 2,500 pieces of debris – and 100,000 smaller fragments – from the destroyed Chinese craft. Some of the pieces would remain in orbit around the Earth for the next 100 years and pose a risk to the US Space Shuttle and the International Space Station, Miss Rice said. She also pointed out that America had not tested an anti-satellite weapon since 1985. Just a month later this had changed. In February 2008, Mr Gates – with the backing of Mr Bush – decided that diplomacy was not enough. The missile was fired.

Gov’t says to drink.

A Toast to Your Health

Warning: Alcohol may increase your life expectancy and reduce dementia.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture released its 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans on Monday. There weren't many surprises in its recommendations to reduce fat and salt, eat whole grains, and cut the overall amount we eat.

But here's one thing that might surprise you. Chapter Three, titled "Foods and Food Components to Reduce," deals with alcohol. The Guidelines, created by America's leading health researchers, state: "Alcohol consumption may have beneficial effects when consumed in moderation (up to two drinks daily). Strong evidence from observational studies has shown that moderate alcohol consumption is associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease. Moderate alcohol consumption also is associated with reduced risk of all-cause mortality among middle-aged and older adults and may help to keep cognitive function intact with age."

“Write your own jokes.”


From Jim – the reason behind the story.

Kudlow:     Bernanke and Ethanol Sink Egypt

Decades of autocratic government and a lack of free elections are, of course, the main drivers of the political upheaval in Egypt. But did the sinking dollar and skyrocketing food prices trigger the massive unrest now occurring in Egypt -- or the greater Arab world for that matter?

In addition to Egypt, the people have taken to the streets to varying degrees in Algeria, Jordan, Libya, Morocco and Yemen. Local food riots have even broken out in rural China and other Asian locales.

While the mainstream media focus on the political aspects of this turmoil, they are overlooking the impact of rising inflation, driven mainly by record food prices. For example, former Bush advisor Dan Senor notes that Egypt is the world's largest wheat importer. Yet because of skyrocketing prices, Egyptian inflation is now over 10 percent, while some experts estimate that Egyptian food inflation has risen as much as 20 percent.

So I have to ask this tough question: Is Ben Bernanke's ultra-easy QE2 money pump-priming partially to blame?

Commodities are priced in dollars, and the Federal Reserve has been overproducing dollars for more than two years. Consequently, emerging markets throughout the world -- and the food sector in particular -- are suffering from rising inflation.

The CRB food index is up an incredible 36 percent over the past year, including 8 percent year-to-date. Raw materials are up 23 percent in the past year. Inflation breakouts have occurred in China, among various Asian Tigers, and in India, Brazil and other Latin American countries. Even Britain and Germany are registering higher inflation readings.

In dollar terms, the price of wheat has soared 114 percent over the past year. Corn has surged 88 percent. These are incredible numbers.

To be fair, not all of the food inflation can be blamed on the Fed. A good part of this problem can also be placed at the doorstep of bipartisan U.S. policies to subsidize ethanol.

According to The Wall Street Journal, in 2001, only 7 percent of U.S. corn went to ethanol. By 2010, the ethanol share was 39 percent. So instead of growing wheat, our farmers are growing corn in order to cash in on ethanol subsidies. Egyptians who can't afford to buy bread and have taken to the streets in protest might be very interested to know this.

You either know or you don’t.

Happy Birthday to Ayn Rand

The world's weirdest skyscrapers

The world's weirdest skyscrapers

Looming above Bangkok's skyline like a giant Dumbo, this is the Chang building, a thick-legged monster with a porthole for an eye and a pair of tusks more often seen framing the trunk of Thailand's national animal.

The world's weirdest skyscrapers

The Brutalist-style Genex Tower is an enormous city gate welcoming new arrivals from Belgrade's Nikola Tesla airport. It is 115m tall and has two raw concrete towers connected by a small bridge and a 360 degree restaurant. It scores extra retro points for its dated signage.

The world's weirdest skyscrapers

The Zizkov is one of the most recognisable television towers in the world, thanks to the unnerving black infants crawling up its 216m sides. These babies were created by Czech sculptor David Cerny in 2000, also known for painting a Soviet war memorial tank pink. There are great views of Prague from the top and lifts to take you there.


A 21-day sample on nylon demonstrating palmar flexion creases.

Forensic Breakthrough: Recovering Fingerprints on Fabrics Could Turn Clothes Into Silent Witnesses

ScienceDaily (Feb. 2, 2011) — Forensic experts at the University of Abertay Dundee and the Scottish Police Services Authority (SPSA) are leading the way in the research of new ground-breaking forensic techniques within the field of fingerprints.

How Could You Crash a Car Like This?

How In Snowhell Could You Crash a Car Like This? (Updated)

Blizzard 2011 continues all across the United States. The gigantic snow storm has resulted so far in 12,000 canceled flights, up to 60mph polar winds and thousands of car accidents like this one

RT 93 southbound in NH [yesterday], I only wish I could crash a car like this.

The driver really got lucky, but you may not: If you are in the storm path, better leave the car at home. And if you must drive, use the appropriate car gear, fill up the gas tank, and take with you a snow zombie survival kit, a dozen huskies and a sledge.

Grave Robber Chase Reveals Ancient Holy Land Church

A view of a mosaic in the archaeological site where an ancient church was found in Hirbet Madras, central Israel. Israeli archaeologists say they have uncovered a 1,500-year-old church, including an unusually well-preserved mosaic floor with images of lions, foxes, fish and peacocks.

A view of a mosaic in the archaeological site where an ancient church was found in Hirbet Madras, central Israel. Israeli archaeologists say they have uncovered a 1,500-year-old church, including an unusually well-preserved mosaic floor with images of lions, foxes, fish and peacocks.

The pursuit of a gang of grave robbers has led to the discovery of an ancient church outside Jerusalem that may contain the burial place of the biblical prophet Zechariah, Israeli authorities said on Wednesday.

The hill-top church was destroyed by an earthquake some 1,300 years ago and lay partly buried until detectives from Israel's Antiquities Authority, pursuing a gang of antiquity thieves, noticed an elaborate doorpost poking through the earth. The robbers got away -- they were caught a few months later at a site nearby -- but after weeks of digging, archaeologists uncovered the remains of the church. It was about the size of a basketball court and contained fallen marble pillars and a nearly pristine 10-metre-long mosaic floor.

To be fair, they don’t know anyone who is in, or has ever been in, the military.

Jarrett Orders High-Ranking Officer to Fetch Her More Wine

Valerie Jarrett let slip the effete and useless liberal elite's attitude toward our proud military Monday at the Alfalfa Club, according to the Daily Caller:

Jarrett was seated at the head table along with several other big-name politicians and a handful of high-ranking military officials. As an officer sporting several stars walked past Jarrett, she signaled for his attention and said, "I'd like another glass of wine."
White House economic adviser Austan Goolsbee, who was seated next to Jarret, began "cracking up nervously," our tipster said, but no one pointed out to Jarrett that the man sporting a chestful of medals was not her waiter.
"The guy dutifully went up and got her a glass of wine, and then came back and gave it to her and took a seat at the table," our tipster said. "Everyone is in tuxedos and gowns at this thing, but the military people are in full dress uniform."
"There was no shortage of waiters either," the tipster added.

They say on the news that the only respected institution in Egypt is the military. The same is becoming true here. But that respect is not always evident from our  ruling class.


Liberal’s PC

Knives Okay at School if They Serve Multiculturalism

A Detroit-area district says it's allowing Sikh students to wear a small, religious dagger to school, reports. …
The dagger is a religious symbol that baptized Sikh males are expected to carry.

The school district has a rule against bringing weapons to school. But rules are only for Christians, who can be suspended for bringing rosary beads.

While Sikhs test the blades on their kirpans, zero tolerance is pushed to the last extreme of absurdity against normal Americans. In Spotsylvania, Virginia, high school freshman Andrew Mikel was charged with three counts of assault for blowing plastic pellets through a pen casing to tease other students. He should have wrapped a towel around his head and claimed to be from Asia.


Kirpans aren't dangerous like rosary beads and pen casings.

North Korea

The Lights And Furnaces Go Out Up North

February 2, 2011: In the north, it's been the coldest Winter in decades, with the temperature falling below zero (centigrade) for 40 consecutive days. This has frozen farmland deeper than usual, which is likely to delay Spring planning. The more immediate problem is the continued lack of heat on some military bases. Corruption is suspected, because fuel goes for a lot on the black market right now. Fortunately, the troop's weapons and ammunition are kept locked up most of the time, just in case. No telling what cold and hungry soldiers might do otherwise.

Even major economic symbols in the north are dying. For example, the Kim Chaek Iron and Steel Works are the premier industrial facility in the north, employing 25,000 workers. But the extremely cold weather and growing shortages have left the complex running at less than 30 percent capacity. The workers not only lack work, they lack food, fuel and morale.

We invented this and have sat on our hands for 35 years.

China Takes Lead in Race for Clean Nuclear Power

China has officially announced it will launch a program to develop a thorium-fueled molten-salt nuclear reactor, taking a crucial step towards shifting to nuclear power as a primary energy source.

The project was unveiled at the annual Chinese Academy of Sciences conference in Shanghai last week, and reported in the Wen Hui Bao newspaper (Google English translation here).

If the reactor works as planned, China may fulfill a long-delayed dream of clean nuclear energy. The United States could conceivably become dependent on China for next-generation nuclear technology. At the least, the United States could fall dramatically behind in developing green energy.

“President Obama talked about a Sputnik-type call to action in his SOTU address,” wrote Charles Hart, a a retired semiconductor researcher and frequent commenter on the Energy From Thorium discussion forum. “I think this qualifies.”

While nearly all current nuclear reactors run on uranium, the radioactive element thorium is recognized as a safer, cleaner and more abundant alternative fuel. Thorium is particularly well-suited for use in molten-salt reactors, or MSRs. Nuclear reactions take place inside a fluid core rather than solid fuel rods, and there’s no risk of meltdown.

In addition to their safety, MSRs can consume various nuclear-fuel types, including existing stocks of nuclear waste. Their byproducts are unsuitable for making weapons of any type. They can also operate as breeders, producing more fuel than they consume.

More on Egypt


Egyptians Turning on Each OtherURGENT: Gunfire heard in Cairo's Tahrir Square as supporters of President Mubarak and anti-government demonstrators clash hours after the embattled leader defiantly said he would serve out his term in office.

Middle East Update

Egyptian protests turning violent

Now Yemeni dictator says he won’t run again in 2013

A subtler point here than the Libs obsession with violence, have you noticed how many of these leftist politicals don’t have jobs and live on the gov’t?


A self-described Massachusetts “political activist” was arrested Monday night and charged with sending a threatening e-mail to Florida Rep. William Snyder, R-Stuart, an hour after the Arizona shooting that killed six and critically injured U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.

The unsigned e-mail, sent to Snyder’s state House of Representatives address on Jan. 8, told the legislator to “stop that ridiculous law if you value your and your familie’s lives.”

Snyder has proposed a bill cracking down on illegal immigration for Florida in a manner similar to what Arizona has done.

Obviously, all the hate-filled rhetoric aimed at Arizona set this troubled person off. Will the Democrats please stop it with the violent, eliminationist talk before more people are inspired to violence?

UPDATE: Pintado, 47, is a student at the University of Massachusetts.

Yesterday in the Middle East

Turmoil Hits Yemen...

CNN Anderson Cooper 'punched 10 times in head' by mob in Egypt....
Mubarak backers charge camels towards square...

Clashes erupt between protesters...
Muslim B'hood: 'Prepare for war with Israel'...
Netanyahu fears Islamist takeover...
Fistfights, police demanding bribes at jammed Cairo airport...
'It's an absolute zoo'...

Scary, if true.


What the hard left seeks. (It is hard to understand, but for hard leftist the social improvement of man by government is consuming and they feel the clock ticking. It is all or nothing mind set and time is slipping.)

FRANCES FOX PIVEN: Socialist advocate for mob violence complains she is target.

Related thoughts from David Mastio. And here’s what those Greek riots Piven wanted to see emulated in America were like:

At the same time, tens of thousands of protesters marched through Athens in the largest and most violent protests since the country’s budget crisis began last fall. Angry youths rampaged through the center of Athens, torching several businesses and vehicles and smashing shop windows. Protesters and police clashed in front of parliament and fought running street battles around the city.

Witnesses said hooded protesters smashed the front window of Marfin Bank in central Athens and hurled a Molotov cocktail inside. The three victims died from asphyxiation from smoke inhalation, the Athens coroner’s office said. Four others were seriously injured there, fire department officials said.

Just a reminder, since Piven’s defenders keep trying to make it sound as if she were calling for Gandhi-like nonviolent resistance, when she was quite explicitly calling for violence.

Plus, “The real armed tyranny is the one Piven seeks to impose.”

Faster Please

Level of Tumor Protein Indicates Chances Cancer Will Spread

ScienceDaily (Feb. 1, 2011) — Researchers at the National Institutes of Health and the University of Hong Kong have discovered that high levels of a particular protein in cancer cells are a reliable indicator that a cancer will spread.

By measuring the protein's genetic material in tumors that had been surgically removed from patients, along with measuring the genetic material from surrounding tissue, the researchers could predict at least 90 percent of the time whether a cancer would spread within two years.

The findings raise the long term possibilities of new tests to gauge the likelihood that a cancer will spread and, ultimately, of a treatment that could prevent cancer from spreading.

The protein, known as CPE-delta N, is a form of carboxypeptidase E (CPE). Ordinarily, CPE is involved in processing insulin and other hormones. CPE-delta N, a variant of CPE, was present in high amounts in tumors that had spread and, to a much lesser degree, in surrounding tissues.