Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Only little people pay taxes & wait their turn

Some researchers have once again come with a well, duh finding about the sense of entitlement of the wealthy.
The rich really are different from the rest of us, scientists have found — they are more apt to commit unethical acts because they are more motivated by greed.

Read it all here in the LA Times. Now, this study comes from UC-Berkeley, so is as suspect as a NYTimes immigration story, but – let's face it – the findings accord with my observations of life, good old-fashioned Anglo-Saxon empiricism. Hey, the way to get rich is by going light on the pot, cheating, chiseling, trimming, constantly seeking advantage. You may be contemptible, but you'll be rich.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Tibetan cranial

I know for a long time a woman whose life has been the constant accretion of half-baked spiritual ideas, one stacked on top of the last like geological strata. I suppose, at the very bottom, there is a layer of orthodox Episcopalian. She has an amazing capacity for belief untainted by any capacity for critical thought. Her posted stuff features mostly wackawacka Eastern ideas and dreamy photos with lots of mist. The latest enthusiasm is Tibetan cranial manipulation. For the writings of an eminent practitioner, go here. As herself says, makes you want to manipulate your cranium with a big ol' slug of brandy.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

A year's worth of seismic activity

This site, Dutchsinse, has the major earthquakes of 2011, set up so that you watch the year go by, complete with sound effects. Get a load of Fukushima on March 11 and following, about 1:53 in. My goodness, but the Internet's a great thing. There are worse things than $4 gasoline, one of them being a major earthquake by your nukes.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Oh, the weird stuff my correspondents send me

Cut it and paste it.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Lies, lies, lies

Lt. Col. Daniel Davis, an Army officer who traveled extensively in Afghanistan and spent a lot of time looking at the situation there, publishes in the Armed Forces Journal an assessment of the situation there that shows optimistic press releases and 'we're-winning' speeches by senior officers as pretty much a pack of lies. Davis writes
When it comes to deciding what matters are worth plunging our nation into war and which are not, our senior leaders owe it to the nation and to the uniformed members to be candid — graphically, if necessary — in telling them what’s at stake and how expensive potential success is likely to be. U.S. citizens and their elected representatives can decide if the risk to blood and treasure is worth it.
Likewise when having to decide whether to continue a war, alter its aims or to close off a campaign that cannot be won at an acceptable price, our senior leaders have an obligation to tell Congress and American people the unvarnished truth and let the people decide what course of action to choose. That is the very essence of civilian control of the military. The American people deserve better than what they’ve gotten from their senior uniformed leaders over the last number of years. Simply telling the truth would be a good start.

Go here and read the whole scary article. We must stop meddling in places we don't understand and where we have no business.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Bomb Bomb Bomb

The Israelis are apparently just spoiling to bomb Iran, purportedly to stop Irani progress on nuclear weapons. The loathsome American neo-cons have never seen any evil done by Israel, and a contingent of religious nutcases here seems to favor any kind of violence in the Middle East. Take a look at Tai-Wiki-Widbee here and scroll down to the map of U.S. military installations surrounding Iran. Can't say I blame them for arming themselves, gven the apparent threats they are facing. I went through the first two-thirds of my life with total sympathy for Israel, a common sentiment for those of us who grew up immediately post-WWII. A young friend pointed out about ten years ago that the Israelis were another bunch of expansionary militarists. It doesn't sound completely wrong. I appreciate the virtues of the Israelis, but we can't give them a blank check to act as they will.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012


The wonderful thing about the Net is the way you wander into strange territory; you go looking for a snowshoe hare and happen on an agouti, and that's fun sometimes. A comment on a politicalish blog led me to this:
http://blog.wfmu.org/freeform/2011/10/download-ten-secs-of-every-hit-song-of-the-60s.html, a New Jersey radio-station site where you can go hear ten-second clips of the top 100 songs of each year of the Sixties. Ain't that a hoot.