Monthly Archives: May 2015

Fascist gays attack business for providing them services

Fascists: A Canadian jewelry provided polite service for a lesbian wedding, but was then threatened with boycotts and violence because he dared put up a sign stating his personal opposition to gay marriage.

Let’s understand what happened here. This Christian jeweler agreed to custom-make engagement rings for a lesbian couple, knowing that they were a couple, and treated them politely. But when they found out what he really believed about same-sex marriage, even though the man gave them polite service, and agreed to sell them what they asked for, the lesbian couple balked, and demanded their money back — and the mob threatened the business if they didn’t yield. Which, of course, he did.

You understand, of course, that this is not about getting equal treatment. The lesbian couple received that. This is about demonizing a point of view, and driving those who hold it out of the public square. Just so we’re clear about that.

The goal in all these cases has never been about guaranteeing that homosexuals get fair and equal treatment. No, the real goal, clearly revealed in this case, has been to destroy any opposition, verbal or otherwise, to the homosexual agenda.

Freedom for me but not for thee.

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Patriot Act snooping prevented no terrorism

Even as Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) fights to save the snooping authorized under the Patriot Act, the FBI has admitted that no terrorism cases at all were solved using that information.

So, what use would the government possibly want with such private information? Could it be that it could eventually have some political uses instead, useful for squelching any grassroots opposition?

Nah, our government would never do such a thing. Why, we only have to look at the IRS as proof!

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Coral islands defy sea level rise

The uncertainty of science: Despite having some of the highest rates of sea level rise in the past century, the 29 islands of Funafuti Atoll in the Pacific show no signs of sinking.

Despite the magnitude of this rise, no islands have been lost, the majority have enlarged, and there has been a 7.3% increase in net island area over the past century (A.D. 1897–2013). There is no evidence of heightened erosion over the past half-century as sea-level rise accelerated. Reef islands in Funafuti continually adjust their size, shape, and position in response to variations in boundary conditions, including storms, sediment supply, as well as sea level.

Be aware as well that the cause of the rise in sea level here is not clearly understood. It could be the global warming we have seen since the end of the Little Ice Age of the 1600s, or other more complex factors.

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Nature ignores the elephant in the room

In an article on the possibility that a section on the edge of the Antarctica icecap might be melting, the journal Nature illustrated some of the political agenda-driven science that corrupts climate science and the journalism that covers the field by never noting that the icecap is presently setting size records.

Read the article at the link. Though they never mention global warming, they hint at it repeatedly by noting the arrival of new warm ocean currents. More importantly, they fail to place the whole issue in context by never noting the record-setting growth of the icecap in recent years. For a section of the icecap fringe to suddenly accelerate its “surge to the sea five years ago” during a period when the icecap has been expanding in an unprecedented manner is hardly surprising, and is hardly an indication of global warming. Instead, it suggests the icecap is behaving exactly as one would expect, shedding excess ice as it expands.

By not mentioning the icecap’s recent growth the article allows an uneducated reader to come the incorrect conclusion: that only global warming could cause this melting. It also avoids revealing the complexity and uncertainties that surround this climate research.

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House passes revisions to space law

The competition heats up: The House yesterday passed a major revision to the 2004 space law in an effort to encourage commercial private development in space.

Most of the revisions were requested by the industry itself, and generally eased government interference. As usual, the opposition came from Democrats who wished to maintain as much power for government as possible.

The bill still needs to be approved by the Senate and signed by the President. The Obama administration has expressed “concerns” but has also not opposed the bill.

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Zooming in on Ceres’ mysterious double bright spot

Ceres' double bright spots

Cool image time! Dawn’s science team has released a much closer image of the double bright spots on Ceres.

The spots can now be resolved into a half-dozen spots of varying size, all of which suggest material with a high reflectivity, likely ice. They look so bright because the rest of the dwarf planet’s surface is so dark.

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Russians delay next Angara launch to replace Briz upper stage

The competition heats up? The Russians have delayed until late 2016 the first test flight of the heavy-lift version of their new Angara rocket so that they can fly it with its own new upper stage, rather than using the trouble-plagued Briz upper stage used on Proton.

In other words, they want to dump all the components of the Proton as soon as possible. Whether this will solve the quality control problems that seem to be systemic to their aerospace industry however remains questionable. If I was a commercial satellite company I would have as little faith in Angara, until it has proven itself through a number of launches.

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How the DEA harasses and robs train passengers

Theft by government: Evidence suggests that the Drug Enforcement agency routinely detains, searches, and then steals from train passengers under the guise of searching for drugs.

Read it. This story isn’t from some right wing libertarian website, but from the Atlantic. It describes the routine abuse of power by agents, often resulting in the theft of cash.

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Rogozin pins Proton failure on “moral degeneration”

In a speech before the State Duma, Russian deputy prime minister Dmitry Rogozin blamed the “moral degeneration” of the top leaders of their county’s aerospace industry for Saturday’s Proton launch failure.

“With such degeneration in the leadership of the enterprises, there’s no surprise at such a high degree of accidents,” said Rogozin who said that “space bosses have long gone into their own space.” … The vice premier expressed those that the force of “legal gravitation will lead them [those responsible for the failure of the Progress and the Proton] to where they should be,” RIA Novosti quoted him as saying.

In other words, expect more arrests and prosecutions. Meanwhile, there is little evidence that Rogozin or Putin are doing anything to make their space industry more competitive and thus capable of generating the profits necessary to keep it afloat.

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The media’s fraud and dishonest bias documented

Working for the Democratic Party: A detailed list of documented cases since 1992 where mainstream media sources were caught deliberately falsifying facts in order to slander conservatives or to promote the leftwing agenda.

None of these 48 examples are opinion pieces. In every case, false information or opinions were reported as facts, only to be found to be fabricated or completely counter to the facts as later documented. And as the author notes, the number of these faked stories has increased in recent years, partly because of the existence of alternative news sources on the web which point them out, but mostly because the mainstream media has become more blatantly partisan and dishonest in recent years.

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House Appropriations reveals its proposed NASA budget

Details here.

As usual, the pork of SLS gets a boost while commercial space gets squeezed. The squeeze however continues to get less with each budget, and as I’ve said before, better a slight squeeze than a blank check. That way the commercial companies will have to stay lean and mean and will avoid getting bloated, like SLS.

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Celebrating the death of the mainstream media

The rage builds.

[M]embers of the mainstream media are presumptively hacks, and the pain and misery they endure as their organizations convulse and die should inspire laughter and joy. Sure, there are honest reporters out there, but that’s only a fluke of statistics. There have to be some, if only because of the random vagaries of chance. They can get real jobs with the new media. But in general, MSM members’ pain is our gain.

Remember, they hate us. Hate us. They don’t merely not care about us. They don’t simply misunderstand us. They hate what we think. They hate how we live. They hate what we believe. They hate us.

And it shouldn’t come as a shock if we hate them right back. We normals have already started an unofficial, uncoordinated boycott of the mainstream media.

Read it all, and remind yourself that ABC News considers it perfectly acceptable for their lead anchor to contribute big bucks to the Democratic Party. This is also the same network that is working hand-in-glove with the communist dictatorship in Cuba to spread their propaganda.

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Broken arm

My posts for the next week or so are going to be shorter than I would prefer. This weekend I had a minor fall during a cave trip and broke one bone in my lower left arm. We were about two hours from the entrance, so the trip out was somewhat entertaining, though it did go smoothly without any significant difficulties. taking about three hours to get back to the surface.

Nonetheless, I am a lefty, so writing is now difficult, and with the cast on my arm touch typing is a challenge as well. I can manage posts, but writing long commentaries will likely not happen for the next week or so while the arm heals or I get a smaller cast.

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Update on Saturday’s Proton launch failure

Link here. The failure was in the third stage, which was the cause of a previous Proton failure last May.

Note that the Proton also put a commercial satellite in the wrong orbit in October when the upper stage underperformed.

Overall, the Russians are doing a very poor job in eliminating the serious quality control problems that have plagued their aerospace industry in recent years. If anything, the problems appear to be worsening.

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Balanced rock on Comet 67P/C-G

balanced rock on Comet 67P/C-G

Cool image time! Rosetta’s high resolution camera has discovered a group of balancing rocks on the surface of Comet 67P/C-G.

The image on the right, cropped and brightened by me, shows the most dramatic of these rocks. The scientists are as yet uncertain on how these rocks got to where they are.

“How this apparent balancing rock on Comet 67P/C-G was formed is not clear at this point,” says OSIRIS Principal Investigator Holger Sierks from the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research (MPS) in Germany. One possibility is that transport processes related to cometary activity played a role, causing such boulders to move from their original site and reach a new location.

It is also possible that the rocks were sitting on a base of ice that simply evaporated away over time.

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Another Proton launch failure

Eight minutes into Saturday’s Proton launch, intended to place a commercial Mexican communications satellite in orbit, the Russian rocket failed and broke up.

The Russian launch failures just continue to add up. At this rate their ability to hang on to their commercial customers is becoming increasingly difficult.

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Lorrie Morgan – Something in Red

An evening pause: I posted a Morgan 1992 performance of this classic back in 2012. In 1992 she was performing the song when it was fresh and a just released hit. Almost a quarter century later it remains one of the best songs ever written, and so I think I should post it again, this time in a more recent live performance from 2007.

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The rage builds, even in a posh DC suburb

A stealth write-in campaign defeated a long-time incumbent on the town council for Chevy Chase, Maryland.

Read it. Everything about this story — the reaction to the election by incumbents and their supporters, the reasons the challenger kept his campaign quiet, why he ran in the first place — illustrates the growing fury that ordinary Americans are feeling toward the people presently in power, even at the lowest levels of government. There is contempt for the general population by those in charge, and that general population is becoming increasingly rebellious about it.

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Stephanopoulos admits he is a Democratic stooge

Why I consider television news a Democratic Party cesspool: George Stephanopoulos admits that he had donated $50,000 to the Clinton Foundation, even as he conducted interviews condemning critics of that foundation, without disclosing his donations.

Meanwhile, ABC News has absolved Stephanopoulos of any wrong-doing, which is not a surprise, since from the perspective of television news Stephanopoulos didn’t do anything wrong. He supported the Clintons and the Democratic Party, both by how he reported the news and conducted his interviews, and now with money itself. This is exactly what a television news anchor is supposed to do in today’s modern television propaganda machine: Help Democrats get elected.

If you get your news information from this news source, you either are incredibly naive, or are a Democratic stooge yourself.

Update: The amount of money Stephanopoulos donated to the Clintons is actually $75K, not $50K as first reported.

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House Science Committee approves changes to space law

In a series of party line votes, the House Science Committee has approved a number of changes to the laws that govern the private commercial space industry.

Almost all of the changes were advocated by the industry itself, so in general they move to ease the regulatory and liability burdens that has been hampering the industry since the 2004 revisions to space law. While it is very unlikely commercial space can ever get free of strong federal regulation, these changes indicate that they can eventually get some of the worst regulations eased.

I should note also that, as expected, the Democrats opposed any easing of federal power. To them, all things must be controlled by the government, and to ease any regulations is to commit the most horrific of crimes. Note also that the Democratic lead in this opposition came mostly from Congresswoman Donna Edwards (D-Maryland), who has announced her intention to run for the Barbara Mikulski’s senate seat. This mark-up hearing thus gives us an idea of the future impact of Edwards should she win.

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