May 31, 2005

Deep Throat revealed

W. Mark Felt, then the number two man at the FBI, was Deep Throat. The story came out in a rather odd way. The Washington Post was going to posthumously name him, but he revealed himself to the press. The Post confirms the story. Oh well, it would have been too poetic for it to have been Al Haig or Pat Buchanan.

Posted by duver001 at 8:25 PM

May 30, 2005

Disease of the day

Lesch-Nyhan Syndrome. As my friend Keith points out, it's weird that an inability to process certain amino acids makes you want to eat yourself...

Posted by duver001 at 9:00 PM

Social Security solution to the "problem"

Well, we completely ignore the real healthcare problem and focus on the fake social security problem... Someone with a lot invested in the Social Security system is offering up his solution. Mild tax increases and small benefit reductions. But I fear logic is being used where it does not apply.

Posted by duver001 at 8:49 PM

May 29, 2005

Asia's missing women

For quite some time, population surveys have shown that there are as many as about 100 million missing women in Asia. By missing, we mean that they do not show up as adults. They may have, in recent years, been selectively aborted, or, as has been going on for centuries, killed at or shortly after birth. However, some new work may offer a less hateful explanation of at least some of the missing women.

Posted by duver001 at 8:50 PM

May 27, 2005

The continuing Cross Lander story

I had seen articles about these Romanian trucks coming to the US about 3-4 years ago. Course I never saw an actual truck. A little about why this is the case is here. I wish those guys good luck, even without air bags, since my antipathy towards SUVs is directed towards ones that aren't needed. These really do sound like the trucks that people will take off-roads. Anyway...

Posted by duver001 at 8:44 PM

May 26, 2005

Bud Foote, RIP

One of my favorite professors from when I was an undergraduate, Bud Foote, has passed away. He taught the relatively infamous English Lit class on Science Fiction and is one of the promoters of Science Fiction within the academy. When he retired he also donated his 8000 volume collection of books and magazines to the university library.

"Never argue with a man who is convinced the earth is flat. You have thought about why it is round for maybe five minutes. He spends every waking minute thinking up arguments that it is flat, and he believes if only he could convince everyone, then the problems of the world would be solved" - Bud Foote

Posted by duver001 at 5:31 PM

Store Wars

If you haven't seen it yet, you have to. Store Wars! Join the organic rebellion...

Posted by duver001 at 12:19 PM

Blogs don't save lives, but they can catch the killer...

As in this case.

Posted by duver001 at 11:19 AM

Young cynics

Cynicism in kindergarteners!

Posted by duver001 at 11:15 AM

North America originally populated by 70 persons

...who crossed over the land bridge from asia as measured by DNA tracings of modern Native Americans and modern Asian populations.

Posted by duver001 at 12:28 AM

Too wild for Zurich

Here in the Twin Cities, we've had various Peanuts characters on display around St. Paul. Snoppy, Charlie Brown, Lucy, and did I miss one?

Anyhow, Zurich was going to do the same with a kinda generic bear (unless the bear is deep symbol for numbered bank accounts) with various paint jobs. But, one of the bears was a bit too much. Best part, the "first class service" label on it.

Did Linus have a year of statues as well? Darn it, my memory is fading.

Posted by duver001 at 12:03 AM

May 24, 2005

Wal-Mart and Vlasic Pickles

So, I bought a gallon of Vlasic pickles from Wal-Mart. You're right, it's evil to shop there and just generally wrong. I was motivated to get the pickles by an article that originally appeared Fast Company (a generally silly magazine, but I do occasionally look at it, if I'm stuck on an airline flight with few other magazines) detailing the hurdles Vlasic (and other companies) have to pass in order to do business with Wal-Mart.

So, I bought a gallon of those pickles ($2.50), and also some sliced pickles to make up for it (see the article), and will document their existence. Hopefully my twin gals and I will eat them all before they turn fuzzy. Pictures forthcoming!

Posted by duver001 at 11:41 PM

May 23, 2005

The ongoing farce's recent bodycount

Posted by duver001 at 9:35 AM

Blame Canada! No, no, no, Newsweek!

Who else could be responsible for all that hatred?

Posted by duver001 at 9:30 AM

As there is once again sunlight in Minnesota...

Sunshine may (indirectly) reduce some cancer risks.

Posted by duver001 at 9:27 AM

Major police action in Zimbabwe

It appears as though street vendors are a serious threat now to Mugabe. 10,000 arrests since Wednesday though sounds even more serious. Look near the end of the article also for what Morgan Tsvangirai has to say. Wonder if Wal-Mart is starting to think about wiping out flea markets, garage (and tag) sales, and ebay as well?

Posted by duver001 at 9:24 AM

May 21, 2005

New monkey

Discovered in Tanzania! Hi Mike!

Posted by duver001 at 9:37 PM

May 18, 2005

Masoud's killers convicted

Four more of the logistical support people behind Ahmed Shah Masoud's assasination were convicted in Paris. Seems like short sentences for murder.

Masoud would have been the ideal post-Taliban unifier in Afghanistan, and it's hard to not assume that his murder was intimately tied to the 9/11 plot. He would have been the clear US-backed leader to go after Bin Laden and the Taliban after the attacks.

Posted by duver001 at 12:02 PM

May 17, 2005

Who would have guessed?

Military families suffer from a high rate of child abuse deaths. Violence at work = violence at home? The type of person willing to fight for the empire is also willing to beat their child?

Posted by duver001 at 10:07 PM

May 16, 2005

Bush, believe it or not, positively compared himself to FDR

Afer everyone finished laughing, they thought about the old right's fascination with rethinking the Yalta (and Tehran (and Atlantic)) Conference(s) of World War II. I'm not convinced Slate did a strong enough response to this Dubya historical revisionism, but it's a good read. Will the States survive these lunatics? Stay tuned and find out.

Posted by duver001 at 5:49 PM

"Piano Man" in England (Okay, I admit it, I don't have a TV and 89.3 has gotten me listening to the news a whole lot less, so I haven't been overloaded with coverage of this)

Guy in his 20s or 30s is found on a beach, soaking wet, in a suit and tie. He is an excellent piano player, but doesn't speak. No one has yet identified him. Hugh Grant to star in the film adaptation.

Posted by duver001 at 3:52 PM

Good NYT graphic on How Class Works in America

It's kinda scary where I live on this plot. No further comments.

Posted by duver001 at 3:39 PM

Wine and the Supreme Court

Supreme Court strikes down laws banning interstate wine sales. Is there something in the constitution about interstate commerce? It overturns NY State and Michigan laws.

Posted by duver001 at 3:36 PM

Good discussion on gay gay-bashing politicos

On James West, mayor of Spokane, WA has been infamous for his anti-gay initiatives. But guess what? Most recent in a long line...

Posted by duver001 at 3:32 PM

May 15, 2005

The new house pet? 1/2 African Serval and 1/2 domestic cat?

I think my little ones would love to have one! The new trendy pet for the superwealthy. Banned in NYC! Beautiful looking cats I think.

Posted by duver001 at 10:46 PM

Article on escaping from disasters

Interesting piece on the "freeze" reflex and how it is unsuccessful in critical situations. The big examples are 9/11 WTC evacuations (much slower than predicted, many people sat around for 30 minutes or more before trying to leave) and the Tenerife air disaster (commercial airliners are supposed to be evacuatable in 90 seconds (even with some exits destroyed and debris inside the plane) but only 60-70 out of 370 escaped in one minute in that disaster).

Thinking about this further, it's probably not that much of a surprise, and on my next airline flight I promise to spend some time thinking about what an evacuation would look like. 90 seconds to get everyone off of the plane?

Posted by duver001 at 4:54 PM

May 14, 2005

Try this self-referential quiz


Posted by duver001 at 3:37 PM

May 13, 2005

More on the Pope's days in Nazi Germany

I have mixed feelings about the article from the Chronicle. It seems to raise both serious and minor issues without distinguishing between them, but it does make clear the lack of de-Nazification in this person's case.

Posted by duver001 at 7:36 AM

MOVE anniversary

Twenty years ago now, the Philly police dropped a bomb on the MOVE group/cult/movement/whatever, killed adults and children, and burned the neighborhood down. Probably a bad idea, but of course no one has been imprisoned for murdering those kids. This article claims that the police fired 10,000 rounds into the building during the standoff, seems high to me, but I'm tired so I'll let someone else google the details.

Posted by duver001 at 12:01 AM

May 12, 2005

Tastes like chicken? Tastes like human?

Tofu fake human flesh. Fake article, you think?

Posted by duver001 at 11:51 PM

Oversized caskets?

Super-sized Americans die as well...

Posted by duver001 at 11:48 PM

Aardman, Cleese, Wallace, Gromit, and Cannes

Read all about it in the BBC News. John Cleese will write the next feature film, a tale of the French and the English which explores the origin of the English Channel! But before that, The Curse of the Were-Rabbit!

Posted by duver001 at 12:18 PM

May 11, 2005

The slavery theme

Millions are still in slavery around the world. And it looks as though the profit in trafficked people still is made in Europe and the States. $31B annually!

Posted by duver001 at 7:34 PM

Ooops! Flying over the wrong white house

Guess these folks got a bit lost. Seems as though the security folks were on the case. After all, a Cessna can travel, what, like 170 miles per hour? (Hmmm...was just looking at a car review for the 300C SRT which can go over 170mph as well. Though there are crash barriers...) And only one Cessna has ever been crashed into the White House.

Posted by duver001 at 7:21 PM

Party update/invites

For those who have been reading the blog, but hadn't gotten a party invite (heck, I don't even know you all is reading this)... I hold an annual (well, most years) 4th of July party, some people come in from out of town, other folks in town come over for a meal (or two) and a drink (or twelve). This year we'll be having at least one musical act, but no karaoke, good beer and wine, but no Miller Lite, and everyone is invited. So, mark your calendars, and email me if you'd like the official invitation, but you're invited anyway, more details will follow...

Posted by duver001 at 6:23 PM

May 10, 2005

Where are your papers, citizen?

Join the discussion on the US national ID card at

Posted by duver001 at 9:23 AM

May 9, 2005

Cargo cults

Just something I was thinking about the other day...

Cargo Cult Science.

Discussion of the "John Frum" cult.

Posted by duver001 at 11:48 AM

The new SAT

Well, there's now an essay section to the SAT. However, its grading has been figured out! Long essays with fake facts get the best scores. Quantity. Definitely not quality. You have 25 minutes to write 500-600 words to get yourself the top score. Is this how we want people to write? (Okay, I'm writing a blog, so perhaps I'm not the best critic...)

Posted by duver001 at 8:53 AM

May 8, 2005

Drinking makes you smarter?

As well as better looking? One study says so. Or at least that alcohol stimulates brain cell production in mice...

Posted by duver001 at 10:40 AM

May 7, 2005

A good reason to watch the advertisement (Richard Dawkins)

As says, "Evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins explains why God is a delusion, religion is a virus, and America has slipped back into the Dark Ages." a very good interview. Go ahead and watch the little advert and get free access to salon for a time.

Posted by duver001 at 8:46 AM

May 6, 2005

Molly's eyes?

Cyberpunk fashion accessory coming soon. Artificial eyes connected into the brain.

Posted by duver001 at 12:37 PM

Ugly kids get less care

At least in one study. In the supermarket. But without socioeconomic effects removed. Obviously such a study gets a lot of press.

Posted by duver001 at 4:55 AM

May 5, 2005

Niger anti-slavery activist jailed...

...for fraud since slavery doesn't exist in Niger. Right. The BBC webpage also has links back to the news articles in early March when the freedom ceremony was to be held, and was cancelled due to "lack of slavery."

Posted by duver001 at 8:40 AM

Electric car to make world record attempt

Though I wish the state of Nevada would close roads for me as well! Built by a couple of Brits using home equity loans! They're aiming for 300mph.

The previous record holder appears to have been powered by AA batteries---do a search and all, but I'm guessing it was a commercial-connection for one of the battery companies. Still, the energy density of batteries that you can get at the store is getting pretty high. Check out how light the lithium primary cells are. I use them in my camera flash and it lightens the whole unit significantly compared to NiCad cells.

Posted by duver001 at 8:37 AM

May 4, 2005

At least someone else is doing the torturing for us...

In Iraq, the new police are carrying on the human rights abuses. With rolemodels like ours, who is to blame them?

Posted by duver001 at 12:57 PM

May 3, 2005

666 vs. 616

For the heavy metal fans and Heinlein readership, the number of the beast might not be 666. Of course this is predicated on a whole belief system and so-forth. Okay, I won't go into that...

Posted by duver001 at 8:44 AM