Wednesday, April 12, 2017


The more uncivilized the man, the surer he is that he knows precisely what is right and what is wrong....The truly civilized man is always skeptical and tolerant, in this field as in all others. His culture is based on "I am not too sure." -H.L. Mencken, writer, editor, and critic (1880-1956)

Kyle Okposo, a forward for the Buffalo Sabres, is in the Neurosurgical Intensive Care Unit of a Buffalo hospital, undergoing tests for an undisclosed illness. Okposo, 28, has been ailing and undergoing tests since March 28. He entered Buffalo General Medical Center on Sunday and later was moved to the ICU. Okposo signed a seven-year, $42-million with the Sabres as an unrestricted free agent last summer after spending his first nine seasons in the NHL with the New York Islanders. Coach Dan Bylsma still has no update on Okposo’s condition, a tribute to the astonishing HIPPA secrecy of medical care and the NHL.

Wendy’s Chief Operating Officer, Bob Wright, stated the company experienced a five percent wage inflation and they expect wages to rise at least four percent in 2017. He addressed possible options to accommodate the rising costs of business and inflation, and the unfortunate answer was to eliminate 31 hours of labor each week.

In 2013, a college student assigned to research a deadly substance sought help via Twitter: "I can't find the chemical and physical properties of sarin gas someone please help me." 
An expert at a security consulting firm tried to be helpful, telling her that sarin is not gas. 
She replied, "yes the [expletive] it is a gas you ignorant [expletive]. sarin is a liquid & can evaporate ... shut the [expletive] up." 

“Americans should not take the current international order for granted,” Gen. David Petraeus said at a House Armed Services Committee hearing. “It did not will itself into existence. We created it. Likewise, it is not naturally self-sustaining. We have sustained it. If we stop doing so, it will fray and, eventually, collapse."

Boston Red Sox slugger Ted Williams missed almost five full baseball seasons (1943, 1944, 1945, 1952 and 1953) fighting as a fighter pilot in World War II and the Korean War and still managed to hit 521 home runs.

There was a time when newssheets printed in English were only permitted to carry foreign news – this curb on press freedom followed an edict by Queen Elizabeth I’s Privy Council in 1586 that no domestic news could be printed for public circulation.

According to political philosopher Walter Berns, the question always is not whether elites will govern but which elites will.

The public face of the U.S. Government as portrayed in the Press is increasingly weird. The Left is incapable of assessing anything with dispassion anymore. Romney was a pretty benign guy but, as Obama's opposition, he was characterized as the Prince of Darkness. Manichaeism precludes discussion. As a result, I have no idea what is going on. Was Trump's recent announcement about Israel really a simple rewording of the historical U.S. position as it seemed?  Should my day hinge on what Trump said in a phone call? Who are these lunatics in Berkley?
One real improvement would be if Trump moved one person back and created a time (and individual) filter before announcements.  But we simply can not go through an administration where every quarter hour a shrieking revelation is made by a hysterical and outraged press; we will all go nuts. Let's go back and worry about the Zika virus again for a while. And what about those wild pigs?

The Federal Reserve is quietly tightening monetary policy, allowing the maturity of its $4 trillion bond portfolio to decline every day. (WSJ)

in 1930 forty-four-year-old D. H. Lawrence died in Vence, France, of tuberculosis. Lawrence was so scoffing of medical (or any other) science that he refused to name or accept his condition, or to submit to any of the "magic mountain" treatments recommended to him. This fatalism was combined with a belief that he was in the grip of an evil spirit, visited upon him by a lifetime of vilification from misguided critics and an outraged public -- most recently for the banned Lady Chatterley's Lover (1928), and for an exhibition of paintings condemned as "filth" by the press and confiscated by the police. "The hatred which my books have aroused comes back at me and gets me here," he told a friend, tapping his chest. "If I get the better of if in one place it goes to another." (Steve King)

Who is...Klaus Fuchs?

A new argument has arisen over taxation (maybe not so new). The conventional dispute has been about how heavily those on high incomes should be taxed. Taxation matters, but some think this is the wrong question. In future, taxation needs to make distinctions based less on how much money has been made, and more on how it has been made. Ruchir Sharma makes the point in The Rise and Fall of Nations by the simple metric of looking at the billionaire lists and comparing, country by country, the number who made their fortunes from innovation against those who made it from capturing rents. In successful nations the former predominate; in badly governed societies it is the rent-seekers who thrive. But the increasing complexity of our economies has brought new scope for rents. Some markets are being stretched beyond their capacity to allocate resources efficiently without new regulation, a point made by Raghuram Rajan and Luigi Zingales in Saving Capitalism from the Capitalists. In response to complexity, taxes will need to become context-specific instead of income-specific. The new strategy will be to tax pockets of rents--with its attendant fallout in response to loss of return, especially in those of retirement age. Still, taxation must be seen for what it contains within, its essence: The power to destroy. Using it as a positive tool is like cutting the lawn with machine gun fire.

An HSV-2--herpetic--Trivalent Vaccine Is Immunogenic in Rhesus Macaques and Highly Efficacious in Guinea Pigs.

Negal writes, in a review of Daniel  Dennet's new book:
"Dennett writes, the world is
full of other people, plants, and animals, furniture and houses and cars…and colors and rainbows and sunsets, and voices and haircuts, and home runs and dollars, and problems and opportunities and mistakes, among many other such things. These are the myriad “things” that are easy for us to recognize, point to, love or hate, and, in many cases, manipulate or even create…. It’s the world according to us.
According to the scientific image, on the other hand, the world
is populated with molecules, atoms, electrons, gravity, quarks, and who knows what else (dark energy, strings? branes?).
This, according to Dennett, is the world as it is in itself, not just for us, and the task is to explain scientifically how the world of molecules has come to include creatures like us, complex physical objects to whom everything, including they themselves, appears so different."
It takes a photon, on average, 200,000 years to travel from the core of the Sun to the surface, then just a little over 8 minutes from the Sun's surface to your eyeball, sliding in at 1,100,000,000km/h.

Sometime the march of Science is more like a screaming Banzai attack.
Trump is considering the appointment of Robert F. Kennedy, an environmental activist and vocal vaccine skeptic, to lead a commission "on vaccine safety and scientific integrity," as was reported last week. Trump met with Kennedy in Trump Tower on January 10, and Kennedy later told his environmental-group colleagues that he would be taking a leave to chair the vaccine commission. (Trump’s team said later that no decision had been made yet.)

Over 12% of all the people ever born are 'walking' the planet at this very moment

An article by a McGill prof that is a thorough and thoroughly depressing discussion on university conformity. Here is the stated objective of a university department:
School of Social Work, at Ryerson University in Toronto: School of Social Work is a leader in critical education, research and practice with culturally and socially diverse students and communities in the advancement of anti-oppression/anti-racism, anti-Black racism, anti- colonialism/ decolonization, Aboriginal reconciliation, feminism, anti-capitalism, queer and trans liberation struggles, issues in disability and Madness, among other social justice struggles.

Martin Gabela is the guy who is championing short, intense workouts that he compares with 20-40 minute moderate workouts. When asked how these short programs helped weight loss he said this: "In general, exercise is not a huge contributor to weight control. People don’t like to hear that, but it’s true. It is much easier to cut calories in the diet than to burn large numbers of them with exercise of any kind. With H.I.I.T., there is some evidence that you develop a slight metabolic after-burn, meaning that for up to 24 hours after a session, you burn slightly more calories than if you had not exercised. But the numbers are small, so it’s better to eat less if weight loss is a goal."

Golden oldie:

In 1950, Klaus Fuchs was arrested for working as a spy for the Russians and passing them atomic secrets. His capture set off a chain of arrests. Harry Gold, whom Fuchs implicated as the middleman between himself and Soviet agents, was arrested in the United States. Gold thereupon informed on David Greenglass, one of Fuchs’ co-workers on the Manhattan Project. After his apprehension, Greenglass implicated his sister-in-law and her husband, Ethel and Julius Rosenberg. They were arrested in New York in July 1950, found guilty of conspiracy to commit espionage, and executed at Sing Sing Prison in June 1953.

Tom Brady does a brain exercise called BrinHQ. That’s the brain training program that Brady’s TB12 Sports Center installed as one of the four pillars of improvement techniques designed to meet Brady's goal of playing until he’s 50.
“I’ve used it for probably three years now consistently,” Brady said. “There has been a lot of talk about concussions and head trauma and CTE. I’ve learned that prevention is part of the issue. I work hard to try and prevent some of those things from happening. BrainHQ does a great job of cognitively trying to keep me ahead of any of those problems.”
Yeah, but does it make you a better quarterback?
“Yeah, you can see yourself improve,” he said. “It does a great job of tracking you, monitoring you, seeing where you were before. It’s been a great tool.”
Those are sweet words to the ears of Dr. Henry Mahncke, CEO of Posit Science, the creator of the BrainHQ training program. According to Mahncke, Brady stumbled onto BrainHQ about three years ago, tried it for a year and liked it so much that he called Posit Science for a meeting. Dr. Merzenich is a recent winner of the Kavli Prize in Neuroscience.

In America, if you kill two or more people with a short time gap in between those two events, according to the FBI you are technically a serial killer. 
Criminologists estimate that in the united states at any given point of time there are over 100 serial killers yet to be caught walking amongst us.

I know of no rights of race superior to the rights of humanity, and when there is a supposed conflict between human and national rights, it is safe to go to the side of humanity. I have great respect for the blue eyed and light haired races of America. They are a mighty people. In any struggle for the good things of this world they need have no fear. They have no need to doubt that they will get their full share.
But I reject the arrogant and scornful theory by which they would limit migratory rights, or any other essential human rights to themselves, and which would make them the owners of this great continent to the exclusion of all other races of men.--Fredrick Douglass writing on immigration of Asians.
An interesting quote that I found used mistakenly in reference to Trump's immigration policy.

AAAAnnnnnndddddd.....a picture:

If all the economists were laid end to end they would all point in different directions.

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