Archive for August 31st, 2009

Honoring the Fallen.

I’d like to think my hero, Richard Feynman, would have found this funny.

XKCD Rules.

Today needs more humor.


The Station Fire in LA claimed two firefighters.  It was a vehicle accident.  There’s no good way to die but I think most would agree that this way beats being burned.

Condolences to their families and fellow firefighters.

Image: KTLA

Image: KTLA - found it here.

Sadly, these two will not get anywhere near the respect and recognition of a senator.

“It’s burning everywhere,” U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman Dianne Cahir said. “When it gets into canyons that haven’t burned in numerous years, it takes off. If you have any insight into the good Lord upstairs, put in a request.”

The fire had burned 134 square miles of brush and trees by early Monday and was just 5 percent contained.

Communications and astronomy centers atop Mount Wilson were threatened by fire.

The dead firefighters were Capt. Tedmund Hall, 47, of San Bernardino County, and firefighter Specialist Arnaldo “Arnie” Quinones, 35, of Palmdale. Hall was a 26-year veteran, and Quinones had been a county firefighter for eight years.

“Our hearts are heavy as we are tragically reminded of the sacrifices our firefighters and their families make daily to keep us safe,” Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said in a statement.

When I was a firefighter, my boss told me about two of his crew years ago and how they died.  They were bringing a thousand-gallon tanker to a spot that needed it and were going too fast to avoid a bridge abutment.  Four tons of water is hard to move around and is hard to slow down. If you stop too suddenly it also will keep moving.


Obama is more effective at taking out terrorists than Bush is!  Why?  Because he said so.  By what metric?  You know, metrics are really beside the point.  We need to focus on his success.  Because the numbers are going up.

The former Marine General didn’t provide any specific numbers to back up his claim, but he said “there is an increasing trend and I think we seen that in different parts of the world over the last few months for sure.” He added that he was not “making a tally sheet saying we are killing more people, capturing more people than they did — that is not the issue.”

But the numbers are going up, he said.  “The numbers of high value targets that we are successfully reaching out to or identifying through good intelligence” from both the CIA and intelligence agencies from US allies has made the difference, he said. “We have better human intelligence; we know where the terrorists are moving. Because of the dialogue and the tone of the dialogue between us and our friends and allies…the trend line against terrorism is positive, and that’s what we want. If we have a positive trend line we have a safer country.”

We’re reaching out to high value targets.  Nice.  I’m sure more of the Libya/Lockerbie type approach is called for.  It’s what any good liberal/socialist country would do.

I’m sorry, but I must call bullsh*t on this one.


Schools banning touching to prevent swine flu infections.

Chest bumps. High fives. Hugs and handshakes. Glen Cove Middle School students Ali Slaughter and Hannah Seltzer say that’s what friends do on the first day of school. But when students in the Nassau community return to school next week, the superintendent will be urging abstinence. Everyone from the tiniest tots to the biggest high school football players will be asked to limit skin-on-skin contact in an attempt to prevent the spread of swine flu when it re-emerges this fall.

You try to play football w/o touching.  They’ll be putting body-sized condoms on the players.

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