Some days I need to re-acquire my sense of wonder, many times I end up here.
I’m a sucker for a good turn of phrase
I am really a sucker for a good turn of phrase, great poetry, or good lyricism in a song. Growing up I read “Look Homeward Angel” to rags simply because Thomas Wolf’s prose is so good. I completely disagreed with his manic depressive angst, sturm and drang, but I kept coming back for lines like “Oh most weary unbright cinder.” etc.
Yeat’s Second Coming also really sang to me, even though it’s very apocalyptic.Â However nowadays I look for things a bit more inspirational, and less depressing.
ForÂ my previous post I was poking around the net for inspirational poetry / prose when I remembered the great soliloquoy from Savannah at the end of “Mad Max, Beyond Thunderdome”. Continue reading “I’m a sucker for a good turn of phrase”
“This you knows: the years travel fast and time after time I done the tell. But this ain’t one body’s tell; it’s the tell of us all, and you’ve got to listen it and [re]member, ’cause what you hears today you gotta tell the newborn tomorrow.
I’s lookin behind us now, into history back. I sees those of us that got the luck and started the haul for home and I ‘members how it led us here and how we was heartbroke cause we seen what they once was. One look and we knew’d we’d got it straight. Those what had gone before had the knowin’ and the doin’ of things beyond our reckonin’, even beyond our dreamin’.
Time counts and keeps countin’ and we knows now, findin’ the trick of what’s been and lost ain’t no easy ride. But that’s our track. We gotta travel it and there ain’t nobody knows where it’s gonna lead.
“Still, in all, every night we does the tell so that we member who we was and where we came from. But most of all we ‘members the man who finded us, him that came the salvage, and we lights the city not just for him but for all of ’em that are still out there, cause we knows there’ll come a night when they sees the distant light and they’ll be comin’ home.”
Savannah from “Beyond Thunderdome”
Exit strategy for Iraq and Afghanistan
Poor Harry Reid isn’t getting much notice in the press, even after his master plan for Dem congresscritters during Spring break. In his latest attempt, he states that we “don’t have the resources” for a military response to Iran.
Ignoring the fact that our troops not involved in Iraq and Iran number aproximately 2 million, we could still take action in Iran if needed. Remember that we took both Afghanistan and Iraq, both in weeks, both with forces less than 500,000 in strength. Iraq not only knew when we were coming, they also knew how thanks to the Russians. We still rolled them up like used tinfoil. (Thanks and a hat tip to the great troops, General Tommy Franks, and Stefan Possony, Jerry Pournelle, and Francis X. Kane.)
We might have to carpet bomb the road there, but make no mistake — weÂ could make it part of our exit strategy for Iraq and Afghanistan toÂ bring our troops home via Tehran International Airport.
Liberal Rites of Spring
It’s that time of year, and liberals everywhere are getting ready to demonstrate. It’s an annual reflexive pulse of hate every April and May. You first see small demonstrations against or for the latest cause de jour leading into May, and then we get to May Day.
The teachers rile up the students, the various socialist, green, and communist organizations and all their front organizations drum up the troops, and labor unions round up their stalwarts. Danny Glover gets arrested. There are speak-ins, teach-ins, crazy street theater, and marches, all serious, all about how terrible things are today.
Then everyone gets out and demonstrates on May Day, marching in serious solidarity across the globe, the world socialist, progressive, or whatever movement in a paroxysm of angst.
Meanwhile, most adults & all the children in America are out enjoying Spring and the joy of life by playing together, watching little league, planting the garden, flying a kite, making love, or walking the dog. In other words, the only ones who notice the serious statement and all the marchers are addled students and teens who can’t get laid, news bureaus, and the other demonstrators.
This year the rallying cry will be amnesty and all immigrants are legal, a lost cause but one they will pursue anyway in hopes of gaining new recruits from the ranks of illegal immigrants. The left always allies and recruits from the discontented, and the more discontented, the better for the welfare-statists. They will crawl in bed with anyone, even avowed enemies of the state.
Just remember the origin of May Day, and the past parades…
Jihadis or terrorists?
In Friday’s National Journal Article Jonathan Rauch points out why everyone’s struggling to define the conflict we are in, and I think his observation is extremely important. We aren’t going to win, nor can we discredit the enemies ideology if we don’t define it better. This article went somewhat unremarked then because the net was reverberating to the “unorchestrated” confessions of six generals, and the new leaf turned by Patrick Moore. I think folks should take a look now that the furors have died down.
No single definition prevails, but here is a good one: Jihadism engages in or supports the use of force to expand the rule of Islamic law. In other words, it is violent Islamic imperialism. It stands, as one scholar put it 90 years ago, for “the extension by force of arms of the authority of the Muslim state.”
Jonathan Rauch, National Journal
UPDATE: I was a sucker for hard right agitprop when I started blogging, what can I say? Since this time I’ve done more study, and have seen how the extremists of both sides misinterpret “Jihad” just as Rauch does above. The far right clash of civilizations crowd is spreading Al Qaeda’s propaganda for them by using only the most extreme interpretations they destabilize and diminish the moderate muslims who make up the majority.
Sunday hodgepodge II
While the West is debating building nuclear power plants, China is building, Turkey is building, Iran is building, Russia is building, India is building, and both Australia and Finland are ramping up Uranium mining.
Meanwhile, other countries like Brazil are depending on Nuclear plants to help meet greenhouse gas goals, and the same opposition that has kept nuclear plants from being built in the west for thirty years still maintains their superstitious and uninformed anti-nuclear stance. It’s time forÂ you to give Greenpeace a piece ofÂ your mind if you honestly care about the environment. One of Greenpeace’s founders, Patrick Moore certainly has….
All deaths to-date from nuclear power do not come close to equalingÂ any singleÂ year of deaths from either coal or petrochemical power in the past thirty years. If youÂ want a world of strife and warfare thenÂ keep energy sparse, expensive, and concentrated in a few countries. Maybe then we will see another year like the single one where deaths from nuclear did outweigh the deaths from all other power sources.
The Stars My Destination
Someone is finally going to make a movie from Alfred Bester’s “The Stars My Destination“. Constantin Film Development inc. and Impact Pictures appear to be putting together the film at present, and it’s aboutÂ time.
TSMD is one of SF’s genre-defining classic works and it’s as current today as when it was written. It’s a Promethean tale of revenge ala The Count of Monte Cristo, with a back theme of the responsibility we all have in modern times with the powers granted through Science.
E.G. — if you have an explosive that can split the planetÂ which is ignited by a thought then you must be responsible.
My only fear is that they will mess this up and make a special-effects dog’s lunch out of it instead of concentrating on the two major themes and three minor so artfully woven by Alfred Bester.
Gully Foyle is my name
and Terra is my nation
Deep space is my dwelling-place
and death’s my destination.
Alfred Bester, “The Stars My Destination”
Global warming developments
Interesting development in Canada, to paraphrase the essentials : if we knew then what we know now Kyoto would have never happened.”
The fact is that â€œthe study of global climate change is, as the Canadian Prime Minister himself has said, an emerging science, and one that is perhaps the most complex ever tackled. It may be many years yet before we properly understand the Earth’s climate system. Nevertheless, significant advances have been made since the protocol was created, many of which are taking us away from a concern about increasing greenhouse gases. If, back in the mid-1990s, we knew what we know today about climate, Kyoto would almost certainly not exist, because we would have concluded it was not necessary.
To me the whole global warming debate has defocused and diminished the environmental movement, Environmentalists don’t need a new poster crisis every ten years. Agit-prop, new dogma, and crisis mongering never make for good policy — bolstering your cause with potential causality vs. proven facts is usually a bad thing, which usually achieves bad ends. The politics of the dogma debate and the geopolitical gerrymandering over the redistribution of wealth implicit in the Kyoto protocol have now engulfed and surpassed the original purpose for most proponents.
In Aristotle’s day, as philosophers used the word, “Praxis” defined a complete philosophical concept — it meant in simple terms ” A purposeful, reasoned action.” I am a proponent of Praxis, and when you take the reason from the action, you get an unreasoned action… Kyoto.
It makes emminent good sense to reduce airborn carcinogens from autos, manufacturing, etc., and you don’t need a crisis theory to prove it. Any toxicologist can provide you with ample evidence of the badness of introducing benzene compounds to human lung tissue.
Are Los Angeles and San Diego ready for La Revolucion?
While researching some of the folks behind the recent rash of Illegal immigrant rallies, I came across a few things that will disgust most Americans.
Warning, some of these links lead to anti-American sites with doctored and faked photos, some pornographic. Some of the links lead to sites that are virulently anti-Semitic.
These photos purport to be of American soldiers raping Iraqi women prisoners. These have been used to incite the insurgency in Iraq, they are the reason for the recent demand to “release the female prisoners from Abu Gharaib”, and they made the Falujah resistance much stiffer than it should have been.
Here’s the site, still up. Almost anyone in America can tell these are fake for several reasons, here’s just a couple: Wrong uniforms, Mexican Wrestling masks of a type found in most Mexican markets and worn in Lucha Libre matches. You can probably find more reasons yourself if you can stomach examining the photos closely.
What is Aztlan?
In Chicano folklore, Aztlan is often appropriated as the name for that portion of Mexico that was taken over by the United States after the Mexican-American War of 1846, on the belief that this greater area represents the point of parting of the Aztec migrations.
Here’s the professorial view from Albequerque.
Here’s another view of Aztlan.
La Voz de Aztlan is anti-American, aligning politically with Castro. Hugo Chavez, the Palestinians, and most other communist and socialist bad boys. They are also very anti-Semite and are on a mission, like Mecha, to create insurrection in the southwest. They have read their Lenin and Marx, and know the value of agitprop.
This group of extremists appears to be small, but let’s hope these moonbats don’t gain tons of adherents because they look like a hate group to em.
The energy future — burning water
“The Future’s going to happen.” — The Future and its Enemies, Virginia Postrel
In the last article I defined the problem, and will summarize it again below:
- Like it or not we are a high energy society — any city cut off from transport and energy is two to fourÂ days away from rioting and looting. (ala Katrina) We are dependent onÂ plentiful energy for transport, growing the food we eat, and pumping and processing the waste we make. Any future in which energy is limitedÂ even slightly createsÂ dim andÂ horrific lives forÂ most of humanity.
- The US is dependent on foreign sources of hydrocarbons for a large percentage of our energy needs.
- World demand coupled with politics has created high priced energy.
- Energy isn’t as plentiful as it needs to be if we want a clean environment.
- Current energy production methods create & disperseÂ carcinogenic pollutantsÂ widely.
So in a nutshell if we want folks happy and the environment clean, then we need plentiful, cheap, clean energy produced here. Ok, so cheap is a nice to have –Â if we just want to save the US, it can be expensive energy. However, if we want third world countries to improve then energy needs to be cheap.
Â Sounds like a tall order, but it’s really not. Every bit of technology needed is already here today, and tested. There are several solutions and in this series we will examine a few. Right now we are going to look into automobiles that run on water.
Positing unlimited, cheap electricity you can produce all the Hydrogen needed to fuel H2ICE engines. (Hydrogen Internal Combustion Engines.) If you have an H2ICE engine, you are basically burning hydrogen created from water, and creating water and laughing gas as the exhaust. 🙂
The NOx problem is one that they are tackling at the CRF lab atÂ Sandia near my sister’s old stomping grounds in Livermore, California. The problem boils down to the same problem that plagues most speed junkies and engine tuners, how to get the most efficient fuel / air mix at the right time. Fuel injection, timing,Â & carburation in other words.
Well, that’s interesting, but I said this technology exists, and is tested now… so here you go: