BMEWS
 
Sarah Palin's enemies are automatically added to the Endangered Species List.

calendar   Friday - August 08, 2008

Gas Prices Falling

I saw gas for sale today at $3.63.9 per gallon. Cash only, and that was for 87 octane Regular, but what the hey. Around here, gas has come down in price 12¢ just in the last week. Keep on going. Even this “low” price I saw today is a bit more than double what it ought to cost. $1.74.9. That’s a price I’d be happy with.

We still need another 150 more nuclear reactors and at least another dozen refineries. Maybe damn a few more rivers and put in some hydro. And we need to agree on just 2 seasonal blends of gasoline, unless today’s cars can adjust for high altitude in which case 1 blend for spring and summer and another blend for fall and winter. Every thing we can do to save fuel, find more fuel, create other kinds of electricity generation, etc., is going to help. Even if they take 2, 3, 5, or even 10 years to make a difference.

Don’t be complacent just because the price is down 10% or more from the $4+ highs of a month or two ago. We still have a long way to go.

Drill Here. Drill Now. Pay Less.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/08/2008 at 11:14 PM   
Filed Under: • Oil, Alternative Energy, and Gas Prices •  
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No John Edwards posts here

The Silky Pony is all over the news again. Today it’s a big story on the networks that a week or two ago he was caught in a hotel with his mistress and his love child. Oh, scandal!! Oh hypocrisy!! Oh boredom. Oh yawn. Every network has entire gangs of talking heads yammering on by the friggin hour.

Anybody who looked into this ambulance chaser 4 years ago knew he had something on the side. While his wife was home bravely surviving cancer for another day, the Breck Girl was out gittin him some. It wasn’t news then either. It wasn’t news the dozen or so times he’s headlined in the tabloids since then. But this week it’s news.

Now the Mr. Two Americas is off the campaign trail, out of the running again, gone back to channeling the unborn and whatever else greaseball lawyers like him do ... suddenly the MSM discovers he has a mistress? Suddenly they’re all uppity because this is the guy who was preaching Family Values? Well, fine, hmmpph!!

I question the timing of this.

I think the one and only reason that this is MSM news now is because it’s nearly a sure thing that Obama is not going to pick Hitlery as his VP choice. And OBullshit has to make a choice damn soon. And Edwards may have been a contender. At least the Silky Pony has name recognition. Hey, and nickname recognition too! And he did manage to grab enough votes this time to be #3. But the media wants Hillary, and by gumbo, it will dish whatever dirt and smears are necessary to get what it wants. Because they run the country you know. And they’ve made no bones about that since Watergate. Just ask them. Do you think they also have a special event planned for BO some point after his inauguration ... maybe in Memphis? They won’t want to leave Hillary off to the side for too long you know.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/08/2008 at 10:50 PM   
Filed Under: • Media-BiasPolitics •  
Comments (1) Trackbacks(0)  Permalink •  

Meet the women who really do live in the past.  For real, and something different for BMEWS

I’ve been in a kind of, don’t know exactly what. Surfing thru a few places and especially here on this side of the world, if it isn’t the olympics getting coverage it’s the most god awful crimes.  Kids being stabbed and killed with screwdrivers etc.  One nutter over here is on a rampage assaulting women with various weapons from bottles to clawhammers.  He’s just wacking them and running. So far he’s injured 16 and still out there.

So, I was tired of the crime stuff and to be honest politics too. And almost without looking I tripped over this.
Nothing to burn the ole gut or get angry over. Plus it is a bit off the rails in a way but hey, nobody’s being hurt here.
You gotta catch the link and see the photos. 
Thumbs up^

Time Warp Wives: Meet the women who really do live in the past

By Diana Appleyard

Last updated at 10:06 AM on 08th August 2008

The credit crunch, a knife crime epidemic - no wonder so many of us are sick of the 21st century. Most of us just grumble, but some women have taken radical action to escape what they see as the soulless grind of modern life. Meet the ‘Time Warp Wives’, who believe that life, especially marriage, was far more straightforward in the Thirties, Forties and Fifties.

Joanne Massey, 35, lives in a recreation of a 1950s home in Stafford with her husband Kevin, 42, who works as a graphics application designer. Joanne is a housewife. She says:

I love nothing better than fastening my pinny round my waist and baking a cake for Kevin in my 1950s kitchen.

I put on some lovely Frank Sinatra music and am completely lost in my own little fantasy world. In our marriage, I am very much a lady and Kevin is the breadwinner and my protector.
image

We’ve been married for 13 years and we’re extremely happy because we both know our roles. There is none of the battling for equality that I see in so many marriages today.

What’s wrong with wanting to be adored and spoiled? If I see a hat I like, I say ‘Oh, we can’t afford that’ and Kevin says: ‘You have it, I’ll treat you.’

I don’t even put petrol in our Ford Anglia car, which is 43 years old, because I think that is so unladylike. I ask Kevin to do it.

I make sure our home is immaculate, there is dinner on the table, and I look pretty to welcome my husband home.

My kitchen is an original ‘English Rose’ design, with units made from metal, which was very much the ‘in thing’ then.

We bought it from a family in Scotland who saw our advert in an antiques magazine.

They had it in their garage to keep tools in, so it needed renovation. I have an original Kenwood Mixer, the phone is bright pink Bakelite, and even my crockery is original 1950s.
We had the hall carpet made for us with an authentic swirling geometric pattern. I like to close the front door, pull off my gloves and know that I am in my own world.

I only ever wear 1950s clothing, such as tight pencil skirts, a white blouse and a wide belt.

Kevin wears ‘modern’ clothes for work, but at weekends he wears a smart suit and a trilby.

I admit I am in retreat from the 21st century. When I look at the reality of the world today, with all the violence, greed and materialism, I shudder. I don’t want to live in that world.

http://tinyurl.com/567unv

Catch that link ^ above for the rest of this story and some interesting pix too. Just a fun thing.


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Posted by Drew458   United Kingdom  on 08/08/2008 at 02:31 PM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
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calendar   Thursday - August 07, 2008

Arctic Heats Up - politically at least

Running down a bunch of links from Peiper’s Global Warming post the other day lead me to a great news site. Called The Barents Observor, it’s all about business and politics up in the Barents Sea area. For those who don’t have a globe handy, that’s the northeast end of the Atlantic Ocean, up east of Greenland, off the coast of Norway and Finland, and over to the northwest corner of Russia. You might tend to think of this area as one of the ends of the Earth, but if it is it’s also one of the busiest ones. You see, why Nancy Pelosi is braying on about saving the planet, what she really means is SCREW AMERICA. Because the people who live up there are working just as fast and as hard as they can to fish and farm and mine and drill the hell out of it, environmental impact be damned. Hey, just like China, Brazil, Africa, India ... and the whole rest of the world.

Just a few examples of what’s going on up in the great white Euro North:

But the big news concerns the Arctic basin itself. With the kindly assistance of a bit of Global Warming (and if you lived or worked up there you’d want to believe in GW harder than children need to believe in Tinkerbell, cuz it’s so freakin cold all the time.) getting some of that damned endless ice out of the way for a while last year, geologists were able to get some decent surveys done of the seabeds up there. And they found oil. And gas. And lots of other resources. So now the race is on. Why is Russia building a new aircraft carrier? Well, one reason is that they’re trying to sell the old one to India. That’s assuming they can put out the fires onboard first. Another reason might be strong arm politics. Russia is looking for oil and gas around Svaalbard (Spitzbergen) Island. And when Russia drills a hole, they usually plant a flag. This could be a problem brewing.

It wasn’t just propaganda that made the Russians plant a flag on the seabed under the North Pole almost exactly one year ago, even if their photos were faked. The race is on, and the prizes are huge. Various groups are trying to settle seabed land claims before the shooting starts, but it’s going to be a rough ride. The US will not be getting a big slice of the pie no matter what, but Denmark looks to be in line to become a new world power due to the size of it’s allocation. And tomorrow Canada will attest that the Lomonosov Ridge, a hump of seabed right under the North Pole, is actually part of the North American land mass ... the implication being that Canada should get control of it. And that ridge is where a huge part of the Arctic resources have been located.

There will be no flag-waving or patriotic chest-thumping, but Canadian scientists are quietly set to make one of this country’s most important assertions of Arctic sovereignty in decades on Friday at a geology conference in Norway.

A year after Russian scientists planted their nation’s flag on the North Pole seabed - a controversial demonstration of their country’s interest in securing control over a vast undersea mountain chain stretching across the Arctic Ocean from Siberia to Ellesmere Island and Greenland - the Canadian researchers have teamed with Danish scientists to offer proof that the Lomonosov Ridge is, in fact, a natural extension of the North American continent.

Their landmark findings, the initial result of years of sea floor mapping and millions of dollars in research investments by the Canadian and Danish governments, are to be presented at the 2008 International Geological Congress in Oslo under the innocuous title “Crustal Structure from the Lincoln Sea to the Lomonosov Ridge, Arctic Ocean.”

But the completion of the study represents a key step in Canada’s effort to eventually win rights over thousands of square kilometres of the polar seabed, a potential treasure trove of oil and gas being made more and more accessible as melting ice unlocks our High Arctic frontier.

Yeah right, no chest-thumping indeed:

And on Wednesday, the Department of National Defence detailed plans to conduct a “sovereignty operation” in Nunavut later this month.

The Aug. 19-26 exercise, similar to one conducted last summer, is intended “to project sovereignty in the eastern Arctic” and to test the military’s ability to respond to oil spills and ship emergencies, the department said.

The really frightening part of this whole land-grab situation is that the UN will have to solve it. Worse, it will be under the Jurisdiction of their Law of the Sea Conventions (UNCLOS). That’s not the Law of the Sea Treaty, but it probably isn’t much better or different.

This is a big story, and it’s going to take years to play out. And about the only place I’ve found enough information to be able to put even a few pieces of the puzzle together has been at the Barents Observer news page. It’s like some huge untapped natural resource, just waiting for exploitation. 


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/07/2008 at 04:51 PM   
Filed Under: • Big BusinessNatureOil, Alternative Energy, and Gas PricesPolitics •  
Comments (1) Trackbacks(0)  Permalink •  

Teenagers as young as 16 are to be drafted into primary schools to plug gaps left by teacher shortag

Be interesting to see how this one works out.

16-year-olds to work in primary schools

By Lewis Carter

Under the Government plans, young people will be offered apprenticeships to train as teaching assistants in primary school classrooms.

However ministers have been urged to abandon the “absurd” scheme, amid fears teenagers were underqualified and too immature to work in schools.

Phil Parkin, general secretary of the 35,000-strong teaching union Voice, said: “At 16-years-old the vast majority of young people are simply not mature enough to work in a classroom.

“In many ways their behaviour is not a lot different from the children they will be teaching. And schools should not be a dumping ground for youngsters that can’t get a job elsewhere either, we need high standards of literacy and numeracy to drive up quality.

“There’s also a question mark over whether schools will have the financial capacity to support the help with development these teenagers will need.”

Government hopes each of the 18,000 primary schools in England will have its own trainee classroom assistant via the scheme. The new recruits will help fill the void created by rules which allocate teachers time to mark and prepare work during school hours.

Under the plans apprentices will cover for teachers in group reading and other simple lessons, eventually moving on to more complicated tasks.

Nick Gibb MP, the Tory shadow schools minister, said: “I think this idea is totally absurd. Schools need to be run professionally and as a basic requirement there should not be anyone under the age of 18 working in them – after they have achieved the necessary qualifications.

“I hope the Government will realise this is a non-starter and drop the plans.”

As part of the proposals, a diploma for 14-year-olds, the same level as a GCSE, is also being created in Society, Health and Development to offer the skills required to get on the apprenticeship schemes.

The move to further bolster classroom support comes three years after rules were introduced stating teachers in England were allowed 10 per cent of their timetable for the planning, preparation and assessment of lessons.

The “PPA time” proved popular with teachers but it has put financial pressure on schools, leading to accusations of gross underfunding.

Last week the Daily Telegraph reported that schools were relying on poorly-paid assistants – most of whom do not have full teaching qualifications – to plug gaps in the teaching workforce.

The number of classroom assistants has soared almost threefold from 61,000 to 177,000 in the past 10 years, far higher than the 10 per cent increase in teachers over the same period.

Earlier this year the public sector union Unison claimed that teaching assistants were a method of teaching children “on the cheap”.

It called for tough new rules to stamp out the exploitation of teaching assistants, who earn an average of just £50 a day, compared to a supply teacher who earns £150.

A spokesman for the Department for Children, Schools and Families said: “Teaching assistants play an increasingly vital role in schools. Our qualification reforms will ensure a range of routes to the world of work are available meaning there will be something for everyone.”

http://tinyurl.com/6rg5fl


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Posted by Drew458   United Kingdom  on 08/07/2008 at 12:05 PM   
Filed Under: • EducationUK •  
Comments (3) Trackbacks(0)  Permalink •  

A Semi-Solution

I got an email this morning from a friend ...

I just signed my name onto a petition asking Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid, to support the creation of a Do Not Mail Registry in the United States.

Please consider adding your name to the list of supporters calling for the creation of a national Do Not Mail Registry.

Junk mail is more than just an annoyance; it’s an environmental crisis.  Every year, junk mail production destroys 100 million trees, creating as much global warming emissions equivalent to the emissions of 3.7 million cars.

We deserve the right to protect our privacy and our time. We deserve clean air and forest protection.  Sign our petition today and take back your mailbox:

Thank You!

This sounds great at first. I hate junk mail. My guess is that 85% of what shows up in my mailbox is garbage. Without junk mail I’d get about 20 envelopes a month. That suits me just fine.  I really don’t need two catalogs a week from Lands End, Cabela’s, or MidwayUSA. Or the pool supply place I bought one thing from 8 years ago. Or the candy shop in California I ordered from once. It’s a real pain in the ass, just another one of life’s little hassles we have to deal with every single day.

The link takes you to the Forest Ethics page, where you see the petition. It reads

Dear Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi; Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid:

Five years after the national Do Not Call Registry became the most popular consumer rights bill in history, citizens still face a different form of harassment: junk mail. Every year, Americans receive about 105 billion pieces of junk mail like credit card offers, coupons, and catalogs—that’s 848 pieces of junk mail per household. Even though 44% of that mail goes to the landfill unopened, we still spend eight months of our lives dealing with it all.

Junk mail is more than just an annoyance; it’s an environmental crisis. Every year, junk mail production destroys 100 million trees, creating global warming emissions equivalent to the emissions from 3.7 million cars.

We deserve the right to protect our privacy and our time. We deserve clean air and forest protection. We, the undersigned, support the creation of a national Do Not Mail Registry to provide a simple and comprehensive way for us to say no to junk mail.

This itself is not a bad idea. The national Do Not Call thing pretty much killed telemarketing, and that’s a good thing. If such a bill becomes law it might cut down on junk mail by a huge amount. And sure, that’s a whole lot less paper being used and trees being felled because of it. But I think this is only a partial solution.

I think the entire problem begins and ends with the Post Office. Junk mail exists solely because of their Bulk Mail discount rate, and it’s a tremendous discount. You and I are paying 42¢ to mail a letter, but the junk mailers pay less than 11¢. In theory this is because they do a large part of the pre-sorting work themselves, and supposedly drop the mail off at the local POs. Well, if that’s the case, then I should be able to mail a local letter for the same 11¢. One letter by itself is as pre-sorted as it can be, and if it’s local it doesn’t need to be shipped anywhere. It can be delivered by the carriers working out of that building. So where is my discount? HA!!! And no, I don’t believe quantity discounts should apply here. The stamp buys you the service of hand delivery. It’s the same service for each piece, whether you mail one letter or ten million.

The Post Office is failing because of junk mail. It amounts to 70% of the number of letters processed, but brings in less than a third of the revenue. That’s why the price of stamps goes up just about every year. Get rid of the Bulk Rate discount and the PO would make a fortune. Or they could reduce the price of stamps down to a quarter. Not only would it save a huge bunch of trees, it would allow them to trim their staff by a large amount. Carrying around less than half as much mail would save loads of fuel, and would be kind to the aching backs of the few carriers who actually schlep a bag around by foot. And it might make for a happier work environment too, so we’d have fewer episodes of people “going postal”.

The US Government should not be in the advertising business. Equal Rights, Equal Treatment Under The Law ... one rate for everyone. 


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/07/2008 at 11:18 AM   
Filed Under: • Big BusinessEnvironmentGovernment •  
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A BITTER and angry Winchester mother. Baby denied full medical care under Natl. Health

THIS ARTICLE FROM OUR LOCAL WEEKLY ... THE CHRONICLE PUBLISHED FROM THE SAME BUILDING FROM THE 1700’s TO I THINK 2005 0R POSSIBLE 2006.
THEY ARE STILL IN WINCHESTER HOWEVER AT ANOTHER OLD BUILDING.  I DON’T THINK THEY EVER MISSED A PUBLISHING DEADLINE.

Now BMEWers, this is a touchy subject because it involves national health and I darn well know where everyone stands on this issue. And it isn’t a pro or con article on NHS. Here ... see what you think. 

Oh btw ... this particular article deals with a resident of our village. I don’t know the family however.  One thing I have to tell you, this is a most sought after area and village to live in.  Lots of money here but do not be misled by that.  There are folks like the mil, who took out mortages 50 yrs ago when hardly anyone heard of the place.  It has grown since of course.  But the unfortunate prevailing attitude is that EVERYONE who lives here is loaded. NOT TRUE as I can attest.  But better off then many true enuff.  Now I am assuming the family has paid something into the system. 

There is one comment made by someone who hasn’t any sympathy for this mom’s case.  Something I have a feeling many BMEWers will agree with.
It’s touchy cause in the hard copy edition of this, there’s this adorable, smiling baby.  How do ya resist that?

image

Why won’t they listen?

A BITTER and angry Winchester mum has slammed a decision to deny her deaf baby a life-changing operation.

Christine Wheatley says she is incensed at a verdict last week by Hampshire Primary Care Trust to give her 11-month-old daughter funding for one cochlear implant, instead of two.

She says the decision means Ellie - who is in the bottom five per cent of the 390 profoundly deaf children born in this country last year - will be in danger in everyday situations, such as crossing the road, because she will be unable to learn the direction of sounds.

And the Littleton mother-of-two says Ellie getting the operation she needs is a postcode lottery’ - she says children in Bradford, London and Nottingham who are the same as her toddler have had the two implants.

“Of course I’m bitter and angry,” said the 35-year-old, who herself works in the NHS.

“Ellie will be more likely to get run over by a bus, fail at school or get depressed - and all because of where we live.

“Experts say she needs two implants but the people at Hampshire PCT are essentially accountants.”

Mrs Wheatley said when she and her solicitor husband Ed, 35, first took their baby to the Cochlea Implant Centre last December, the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) had just published draft guidelines recommending that pre-lingual deaf children like Ellie should have two implants.

But by the time she returned a couple of months later the body had changed its mind.

“NICE’s decisions are meant to be evidence-based, but I feel they have bowed to financial pressure,” said the Pitter Close resident.

“Yes, this operation is expensive, but it’s also quite rare.”

Campaigning website http://www.2ears2hear.org.uk reveals that it costs £33,000 for one implant, with a second discounted to £18,000 for the other ear.

She added: “I think the PCT only considered the extra cost of a second implant, not how much less her education and everything else will cost the state if she has both ears operated on now.

“In America private health insurers think it’s actually more cost effective to do two implants immediately.”

Mrs Wheatley, who contracted cytomegalovirus while she was pregnant with Ellie, which led to the baby’s deafness, said she would re-mortgage her house if her appeal against the PCT’s decision was unsuccessful.

Winchester MP Mark Oaten said: “I am determined to help Ellie get her cochlear implant.

“At such a young age this could make a real difference.”

A spokesman for Hampshire Primary Care Trust, said: “Hampshire PCT has looked into funding bilateral cochlear implants and has considered this against current evidence.

“We are also guided by the consultation documents concerning these implants which have been issued by NICE ahead of its new guidance due to be released in September.

“The current NICE recommendations support unilateral implants for children and adults with severe to profound deafness.

“However, under these guidelines, bilateral cochlear implantation is restricted to certain conditions, including children and adults who are also blind.

“We will study the updated guidance next month, and review our current position based on the new evidence.”

A cochlear implant is an electronic device with external and internal components. It works by stimulating the nerves of the inner ear with electrical signals, which the brain interprets and recognises as sound’.

http://tinyurl.com/6bs3tp


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Posted by Drew458   United Kingdom  on 08/07/2008 at 09:39 AM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
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Can Country music rock the US voter?  (stay with me folks, it’s RCOB time)

By Christopher Howse
Last Updated: 12:01am BST 06/08/2008

Have your say Read comments

The Country singer John Rich (half of Big and Rich) has kindly released a song to help John McCain to the White House. Raisin’ McCain narrates the senator’s war experiences: “Well he got shot down in a Vietnam town, / Fighting for the red, white and blue. /And they locked him up in the Hanoi Hilton, / Thinking they could break him in two

See the link and scroll if ya want, to the comment that has me seeing red today. The comment appears here below. Pisses me off. The writer knows ZERO about Country Music (it is NOT C & W btw) and even less about America altho the damned idiot is trying to pass herself off as an American.
This sort of thing always has me seeing red and I know I shouldn’t let jerks get to me cause when they do, they win don’t they?  Can’t help it.

http://tinyurl.com/683lhf

image

Country music fans are the biggest hypocrites in America. They say they’re Christians and yet they love songs about killing their enemies. They say they embrace small town America, but, when shopping, they ignore the little business owners and go straight to WalMart. They say they support American freedoms, but when the Dixie Chicks practiced their freedom of speech, country music unleashed a Nazi-like wave of destruction (death threats, CD burnings). They’ll tell you, “gosh darn, I’m country at heart. Wish I coulda been a cowboy”, and yet they support a political party that is bent on plowing over our vast wildernesses for the benefit of wealthy developers, the vicious culling of thousands of wild horses, the deregulation of industry so that toxins are pumped, unchecked, into our enviroment and now...off shore drilling. Those country music fans love to preach about hard work, the pioneer spirit and independence, and yet they would rather have our nation financially in debt to China, than to pay more taxes to support our trillion dollar war. With their dependence on the luxury of big vehicles and their lack of innovative spirit, they clamor like crack addicts for cheap gas prices. They’ll harangue you to death about patriotism and the nobility of the American soldier, but contribute nothing, content to sit on the couch and watch football instead. They boast of “helpin’ your neighbor”, but moan and whine like spoiled, greedy children when talking about illegal immigrants receiving life saving medical care. The people who embrace the music and lifestyle and all the propaganda that goes with it, were never going to vote for a Democrat anyway, and, I doubt, that even poor ol’ John McCain will make them happy. In their hearts, no president will ever be as beloved as George W. Bush, fake, tough guy cowboy that he is. After eight years of deception, ignorance, bullying, arrogance and incompetence, they still worship the man with a religious, cult-like zeal. By the way, I used to be a big country music fan.
Posted by Susan Widdowson on August 6, 2008 2:54 PM


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Posted by Drew458   United Kingdom  on 08/07/2008 at 08:06 AM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
Comments (3) Trackbacks(0)  Permalink •  

calendar   Wednesday - August 06, 2008

No News Day

There doesn’t seem to be much blog-worthy out there today. Ok, here’s something a little bit interesting ...

Hot Property: Ventura County hillside is 812 degrees

Scientists puzzle over source of county hot spots

High atop a steep grass-covered mountain overlooking the Little Sespe Canyon near Fillmore, the earth is on fire.

Wisps of smoke rise from a brown patch of grass that looks like it was toasted under an oven’s broiler. Deep down, under the dirt, rocks and grass, something is smoldering and burning, sending smoke through cracks in the parched soil.

It’s being called a natural anomaly, a geological whodunit, a scientific puzzler. And it’s the second time that scientists have been scratching their heads over the fact the earth under Ventura County is burning.

In 2004, a patch of land northwest of Ojai burned so hot, it started a brush fire that scorched three acres in Los Padres National Forest. Firefighters cleared the grass from the newest area of hot earth near Fillmore on Friday so the same thing won’t happen.
...
The leading theory behind the latest hot spot is that gas or oil or some other hydrocarbon deep in the soil caught fire and is burning, pushing ground temperatures to 812 degrees. What ignited it or when it started burning is a whole other question.
...
Such fires aren’t uncommon in areas where there is a high concentration of gas or oil underground, he said.

But while the origins of this fire may be a relatively common phenomenon, the one near Ojai is still a puzzle.

“We’ve been researching it for a while and don’t have all the answers,” said Scott Minor, a U.S. Geological Survey researcher based in Denver who has made multiple trips to the site. “It’s like detective work.”
...
The research group ... would like to drill down into the earth to see if the materials support the theory but is faced with a few hurdles. The first is funding and the second is the fact that the area is in the Dick Smith Wilderness, where no machinery is permitted.

So we’ve got ground so hot it starts fires, but nobody really knows why. And instead of trying to actually find out why, there’s a lot of dick spanking going on because it’s some protected wilderness. Sounds like it might be protected ashes pretty soon.

Here’s a bright idea: drill a hole and find out what’s going on. I’d say this qualifies as an emergency situation that should overrule any land protections. Since it’s a protected area, don’t do anything about it, but instead hook up a geothermal generator and make some electricity from it. I bet you could boil a whole helluva lot of water if the ground is that hot, and that should run steam turbines just fine. Plus, it’s a carbon neutral, environmentally friendly way to help cool off the land. Alternative Energy! Unless it turns out that this is a nascent volcano just waiting to melt it’s way to the surface. In which case Ventura County is doomed. Oh well; such things are all part of the day to day world out there in la-la land California.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/06/2008 at 06:44 PM   
Filed Under: • Amazing Science and DiscoveriesOil, Alternative Energy, and Gas Prices •  
Comments (2) Trackbacks(0)  Permalink •  

Gon Out Bisy Backson

Oh Pooh!

Sorry for the light posting ... I’ve got work, and that takes priority. Yesterday and today I’m painting for some customers. Anybody know an easy way to paint louvered doors without HVLP? These things are a real pain in the tailbone. The paint on them is ancient. Sand them down, I told the lady, then a coat of primer. No, just put some fresh paint on it, she says. Ok! And of course the paint doesn’t cover for beans. So it will need at least 2 coats, possibly 3. Hey, I get paid by the hour.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/06/2008 at 10:54 AM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
Comments (0) Trackbacks(0)  Permalink •  

SHE’S READY. IS AMERICA?  AT LAST, A VIABLE THIRD PARTY CANDIDATE.

Now come on folks lets be fair and non judgmental here. After all, surely we do NOT want to be mistaken for Dems, do we?
Lets hear what her platform is. Lets study her ,,, er ,, form.
I vote for the legs.


An ad for The Paris Hilton Presidential Campaign. Paid for by Funny Or Die.

PARIS HILTON RESPONDS

See more Paris Hilton videos at Funny or Die


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Posted by Drew458   United Kingdom  on 08/06/2008 at 06:02 AM   
Filed Under: • CelebritiesHumor •  
Comments (10) Trackbacks(0)  Permalink •  

calendar   Tuesday - August 05, 2008

almost over: summer bowling league

Week 13 of 15: 7-0

Don’t get too excited. We had the buy. That means we bowled against ourselves, and had to beat 80% of our average. We managed to do that. I threw a dog puking awful 113 the first game, and only did a little better with a 144 in the second. Finally in the third I actually settled down and pulled a 198. I must get more practice in; my arm and my hand are not obeying my brain. Even wierder, if I don’t think about what I’m doing, it happens properly most of the time. If I do think about it, I screw it up most of the time. Which is why pitchers of beer go well with bowling. If I was really smart, I’d start drinking before league starts!

Tonight’s win, coupled with another team’s 0-7 loss, should move us up to about 4th. We can make 2nd if the stars align for the next 2 weeks, then it will be over.

We’re thinking about joining a second league. I did two leagues last winter, and it was pretty good. I just have to remember to do more ball maintenance, and I’ll be Ok. Heck, I “boiled” my ball Sunday night (ie soaked it in a huge pot of 175 degree water with lots of detergent for about half an hour) and it was hooking like mad tonight. Today’s high performance balls absorb oil, and if you let them get loaded up with it, suddenly they go dead. You can either boil them, or use one of the rejuvenator machines to get the oil out. The hair dryer thing doesn’t work, and the oven thing is just too risky. I’ve cracked balls that way before. It works, but it’s just too risky. Boiling is better I think. Just leave the ball for a day or two afterwords so any water evaporates.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/05/2008 at 08:47 PM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
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ENGLAND IS OVER RULED BY EURO COURT ON EXTRIDITION TO USA OF TERRORIST.

Headline actually reads,

HAMZA EXTRIDITION HALTED BY EURO COURT

But the bottom line is that unless it goes through, it very much looks as tho a court in weeneyland (or is it weeny?) has the authority to overrule an English court.

So, assuming a euro court can actually overule Brits, about the last Brit home I’d wanna be in this morning would be Bulldog’s and Lyndon’s. I know there’s a lot of Brits want to see the last of this Hamza monster and won’t be too happy.

UK really needs to get out of the EU ASAP!  Not just for this travesty. For their very own survival as an independent and soverign nation.

extradition to US postponed

The British Government has been told to postpone extradition of Abu Hamza until a ruling on whether sending him to a maximum security US jail would breach his human rights.By Jessica Salter
Last Updated: 12:08AM BST 05 Aug 2008

The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg gave the order as the 48-year-old’s lawyers claimed he would be kept in inhuman conditions.
US authorities want to jail Hamza in America’s most secure jail, the Supermax ADX Florence in Colorado, which houses 38 convicted international terrorists.
His lawyers claim that prisoners live in boxes, there is only two hours exercise per week, there are no family visits and every correspondence is intercepted.

The Home Secretary Jacqui Smith has already approved Hamza’s extradition and last month Hamza was refused leave to appeal to the Law Lords, the highest court in England and Wales.

A Home Office spokesperson said: “The decision is a matter for the European Court. We shall seek to have his case expedited so it is heard as soon as possible.”

Hamza is currently serving seven years in Britain for soliciting murder and stirring up racial hatred.
The former imam at London’s Finsbury Park Mosque is accused in the United States of trying to set up an al-Qaeda training camp in Oregon.
He faces 11 charges in total, including sending cash and recruits to al-Qaeda and the Taliban and one relating to the kidnap of 16 tourists in the Yemen in 1998. Four hostages, including three Britons, died in a rescue attempt.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/2501037/Radical-Islamic-cleric-Abu-Hamza-has-extradition-to-US-postponed.html

Sorry about the looooongish link but there were some problems using tiny this morning. Anyway, I only put a link here to show it’s from another source, as I don’t want anyone thinking it was made up. 


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Posted by Drew458   United Kingdom  on 08/05/2008 at 02:21 AM   
Filed Under: • EUro-peonsRoPMATerroristsUK •  
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calendar   Monday - August 04, 2008

Fwee Buwwets!!

My chiropractor is a Marine Lt. And a gun nut. Somebody gave him some ammo about 15 years ago, for a rifle he’d never even heard of. I happen to own such a thundergun, so now the ammo comes to me. It’s all mid-80s production, .356 Winchester. Free! Two and a half full boxes worth, 50 rounds total.

What the hell is a .356 Winchester? Well, it’s not a .357, although the bullet is the same diameter. It’s not a .358, though the cartridge dimensions are nearly identical. A .356 Winchester was an interesting and short lived idea, a highly effective and powerful round chambered in a rifle that hunters had been asking for for 40 years. But the rifle was a commercial failure, and after just 5 or so years the .356 was history. The .356 was a .30-30 rim married to a .358 body, and fed flat nosed bullets for a standard lever rifle OAL of 2.55”.

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In the early 1980s Winchester was losing lever gun sales to Marlin. Both companies have a lever action rifle that has sold well for decades. Make that about a century. Winchester started selling lever action rifles around about 1873. Marlin got in the game shortly thereafter. By the end of the 19th century Winchester had several models for sale, Marlin had one or two, but the rifles that would continue to sell were chambered for the .30-30. The .30-30 is now in it’s 3rd century of production, and as an Eastern deer rifle it’s hard to beat. It will do the job, every time, out to about 175 yards. And it does it without a lot of recoil, and without blowing your ears right off your head. It ain’t glamorous, but it sure is effective. But some hunters wanted more. A .30-30 just isn’t really enough gun for hunting big elk, or big bears, or for shots at longer ranges. In the past, long in the past, there had been lever guns that could handle the big old time black powder cartridges. They didn’t shoot their bullets very fast, but the bullets were huge, and huge bullets will go through just about anything. Almost all of the large caliber lever guns were gone by the early 1930s. But both companies got letters year after year, decade after decade, from hunters wanting more gun. Eventually both companies did something about it.

Around the time I was entering kindergarten, Marlin introduced the .444 Marlin cartridge, in a modified version of their venerable model 336 lever action rifle. It wasn’t anything more than a double length .44 Magnum, but it could push a big fat 43 caliber bullet weighing 240 grains (half an ounce) at almost 2400 feet per second, a full 1000 feet per second faster than a .44 Magnum. This made an awesome woods rifle, even though the pistol bullets it fired really didn’t penetrate as well as other rifle bullets on the market. Winchester did nothing, and Marlin owned the large caliber lever sales for the next 20 years. Not being content with just one large cartridge, they also eventually brought out an even bigger one, their model 1895 chambered in the ancient but highly effective .45-70.

Winchester finally got in the game in 1978 with their Model 94 Big Bore, offered only in the “new” .375 Winchester cartridge. I put new in quotation marks because the .375 is only a slightly (and foolishly) modified .38-55, one of those old time black powder rounds from way back when. “Foolishly” because they made the .375 a hair shorter than the old .38-55, so the new round will chamber in the old rifles. But the .375 is loaded to nearly modern pressure levels, which means it can, will, and has blown some of the old .38-55 rifles to shreds. Not a good thing. The .375 fired a bullet of about the same weight as the .444 Marlin, at about the same speed. But because it was a smaller diameter, the bullets were both more aerodynamic (higher BC) and better penetrating (higher SD, plus the .444 always had an asininely slow rifling twist of 1:38. Bullets with more spin on them dig deeper, straighter holes). So Winchester had a player, but neither the .444 Marlin or the .375 Winchester had the power of the .45-70. Marlin was still the sales leader. And while the .375 bullets could hold onto velocity better than the .444s and .45-70s could, it couldn’t hold on all that well and was effectively range limited to 200 yards. That same old bunch of letter writers still wanted more.

During this time it came to light that most hunters wanted to mount a telescopic sight to their rifles. Winchester’s lever guns had always ejected the spent round straight up, which made putting a scope on one just about impossible. The Marlin 336 has always ejected to the side, so Marlin was ahead on this point too. Winny would have to do something big to recapture those sales. And they did.

A few years later, in 1983, Winchester upped the ante, and released a New & Improved version of their Model 94. This one had a name nearly as big as the rifle itself: the Winchester Model 94 Angle Eject XTR Big Bore, and it was a wonder. The receiver of this beast weighs half again as much as the regular Model 94 receiver, because the walls are twice as thick. It ejects the spent brass up and over at a 45 degree angle - hence the Angle Eject part of the name, so the receiver walls are higher too. And they put a heavy weight barrel on it. All of this was for a reason: the new rifle was offered in two rather amazing cartridges: the .307 Winchester, which duplicated .308 (7.62 NATO) ballistics, and the .356 Winchester, which duplicated .358 ballistics. And that’s a LOT of gun. Plus, to make sure they stole the sales from Marlin, Winchester made the thing pretty. The XTR ("extreme"? “eXTRa range”? nobody is sure) got fancy wood, hand cut checkering, and a quality of bluing and polishing that would never be seen again. It’s a beautiful rifle ... but it’s also an abomination. Remember how I said that market research of the time showed that most hunters were using a scope? Well, when you mount a scope on a rifle, your eye needs to be a bit higher up to align properly with it, compared to open “iron” sights. Which means the stock has to be taller. Winchester went an put a Monte Carlo (ie raised cheek piece) stock on a lever rifle. And the purists just about had aneurysms.  No such thing had ever been done. Practical be damned, a lever rifle MUST have a scrawny, low, flat little stock with all the ergonomics of a fence post! So sales didn’t exactly take off. Especially when Marlin followed suit and chambered their own rifle for these two potent rounds a year later.

The .356 is a high pressure round, and it can shoot a 200 grain bullet just as fast as a hand loaded .30-06: 2400 feet per second. That’s a lot of power. More than enough for any bear or elk that ever lived. Plus it can shoot a 250 grain bullet at 2200 feet per second, just in case you need to hunt Volkswagen Beetle sized mooses or the occasional marauding dinosaur. The 250 grain load is within a hair of the power of the .444 Marlin at the muzzle, but after about 20 yards the better ballistic specs of the .356’s bullet take over, and by 200 yards it has pretty much double the retained power of the .444. And at 300 yards it still has plenty of whack left, while the .444 Marlin bullet has long since fallen to the ground. (you slow bullet shooting, “rainbow trajectory” guys know exactly what I mean here).

But all that power comes at a cost. The .356 kicks like a pissed off mule having a ‘roid rage fit. The XTR quickly gained the reputation as a nasty little rifle. Even the reloading manuals, which would have you believe that shooting a .340 Weatherby is a walk in the park with free ice cream, say things like “recoil in such a light rifle can only be described as brutal”. And it is, oh yes it is.

Oh, the rifles worked fine. The XTR is the best and strongest lever gun ever made. It’s just as polished inside as it is outside; the action is really smooth. But the thing is, the guys who wrote all those “give us more” letters for all those decades were idiots. When you put a high powered (and that’s real high powered, not the MSM’s concept) round in a light little rifle like the Model 94 carbine, painful things happen when you pull the trigger. Especially when you realize that the butt pad of a lever gun is about the same size and shape as an Italian sausage. It’s small. Really small. Half the area of a good bolt gun’s pad. And while it’s made out of rubber, it’s that very special kind of rubber reserved for butt pads: it will last 100 years or so, but that’s because it’s only slightly softer than a brick. The bottom line is you have a whole lot of recoil expressing it’s displeasure into your shoulder onto a very small area. It’s kind of like holding the edge of an axe to your shoulder, and handing a really big guy a sledgehammer and daring him to smack the back of the axe head as hard as he can.

I am prone to exaggeration. You may have noticed this a few million times by now?  I also routinely shoot heavy rifles that have lots of recoil. I shit you not: I am afraid of this rifle. It hurts. It hurts really really bad. When I was young, and in the best shape of my life, hitting the gym every day, I tried to force myself to shoot one entire box of ammo - 20 shots - through this rifle from the shooting bench over the course of an afternoon. I could not do it. I was so battered after a dozen shots that my arm would hardly move. My hands were shaking. Tears started to run when I put the 15th round in the chamber, but, by God, I was gonna tough it out, even though I was actually whimpering. The 15th round loosened a filling, and I admitted defeat. I had to drive home left handed, and had a really amazing bruise for the next two weeks.

After that I learned that you can reload the .356 using pistol bullets. D’oh! It can launch a 125 grain bullet at 3200 fps - the kind a typical .357 Magnum pistol can shoot at 1400 fps - and the recoil is pleasant. And the thing is quite accurate, able to group these little bullets inside 2” at 200 yards. It will also shoot 180s at a pretty good clip (still a hair faster than the same weight bullet in a .30-06) and they don’t kick so bad. So it’s a moose gun that’s better suited to hunting armored woodchucks. It really has no good niche, and that’s why both the cartridge and the rifle became orphans in just a couple of years.

The ammo I got from my chiropractor has sales stickers on it from 1987. One half of one box has been used, and a few rounds have scratches on them. I guarantee what happened: somebody bought the rifle and a couple boxes of ammo, went to the range, and had his ass whupped by 10 rounds. Then he traded the thing in on something softer and saner, or gave up shooting altogether. A half a decade ago I put a nice thick recoil pad on my XTR, but I haven’t fired it since. I think I’ll take a trip to the range soon, just to see if I’ve gotten any tougher over the past 25 years. It’s a guy thing I guess.



image

Heresy!!!


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/04/2008 at 06:32 PM   
Filed Under: • Guns and Gun Control •  
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Not that very many people ever read this far down, but this blog was the creation of Allan Kelly and his friend Vilmar. Vilmar moved on to his own blog some time ago, and Allan ran this place alone until his sudden and unexpected death partway through 2006. We all miss him. A lot. Even though he is gone this site will always still be more than a little bit his. We who are left to carry on the BMEWS tradition owe him a great debt of gratitude, and we hope to be able to pay that back by following his last advice to us all:
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