Finally, the unhappy story for which I have been frantically searching.

Charter loses NFL Network - 2005-12-20

Not surprised one bit.

The Soviet dictator Josef Stalin ordered the creation of Planet of the Apes-style warriors by crossing humans with apes, according to recently uncovered secret documents. Scotsman.com News


You know he's right.

Truthdig - An Atheist Manifesto

Happy Festivus!

We've been watching a number of movies around GateTree House in recent weeks. We're working through our 80's sci-fi lineup: Bladerunner, Alien (actually 1979), The Thing, The Terminator, & Buckaroo Banzai, with Brazil & maybe Aliens left to go. I'm sure there are a couple of others I'll throw in, Mad Max & a few more.
We've also been hitting the Christmas playlist this past week - Bing: Going My Way and Holiday Inn, A Nightmare Before Christmas, BlackAdder's Christmas Carol and The Grinch (the real one) among others.
We've also watched an odd assortment of other films - Soldiers & Saints - a good WWII story with reenacters that won a ton of awards (a little religious, but very good), Northfork - a surreal drama about death & leaving the heartland from the Polish Brothers, King Arthur, which was better than I expected, and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, which is an odd combination of true science fiction and a love story. I probably shouldn't like it, but I really did.


The Holidays are upon us

Festivus - Festivus Poles - 100% Aluminum - Tobermory points out that the Declaration of Independence was an airing of grievances.

As if we needed any more proof that Hugo Chavez' govt. is a fascist dictatorship

The Devil's Excrement - "An undemocratic Government responds to the consequences of their own failures" & "This piece of (election) software and database demonstrates that we are living in a fascist state where the rule of law is non existent..."


10 Simple Ways To Speed Up Windows XP

Connected Internet News


Every comic book hero worth his salt has an archenemy. Batman has the Joker, James Bond has Dr. No, Luke Skywalker has Darth Vader, and Santa Claus has Krampus.

Should we have to show 'papers' to travel in the United States?
I hope not.

This case come before the 9th Circuit this week - Gilmore v. Gonzales.
I'm concerned that we are allowing terrorists to change our way of life more than necessary.


We may kill every Islamo-fascist terrorist, but we have let them have an effect on our way of life that will be hard to roll back...

One morning in late September 2005, Deborah Davis was riding the public bus to work in Denver, Colorado. She was minding her own business, reading a book and planning for work, when a security guard got on this public bus and demanded that every passenger show their ID. Deb, having done nothing wrong, declined. The guard called in federal cops, and she was arrested and charged with federal criminal misdemeanors after refusing to show ID on demand.

Of course they took a picture of the Flying Spaghetti Monster

New Scientist Breaking News - Living camera uses bacteria to capture image


The GateTree

Building a new spare look for The GateTree.

Favorite Movies

Tobermory & Paul & I have been slowly building our top 50 movie lists - Here's some space movie inspiration - SPACE.com -- The Best Space Movies of All Time!

Our namesake passed away today

RIP Link Wray 1929-2005 - Hillbilly Hall of Fame - Wikipedia


The Unnatural Natural - kinda odd, a little sad & a great story.

It was supposed to be a simple story about a mysterious senior-softball phenom whose legend was growing in America's heartland. Of course, nothing is simple. KnowledgePlex


American Hero

Tasha Henderson got tired of her 14-year-old daughter's poor grades, her chronic lateness to class and her talking back to her teachers, so she decided to teach the girl a lesson. She made Coretha stand at a busy Oklahoma City intersection Nov. 4 with a cardboard sign that read: "I don't do my homework and I act up in school, so my parents are preparing me for my future. Will work for food."


I think the end of Western Civilization is in sight

USNews.com: John Leo: We're all victims

They started the Revolution without telling anyone...

In the Pittsburg Post-Gazette, of all places, a great column - The riots in France put the apologist industry into overtime - the "disaffected youth" shout "Allahu Akbar" as they toss Molotov cocktails into churches and synagogues. They talk of turning Paris into "Baghdad on the Seine."



WMDs Found in Iraq

Let this be a warning.

All the Republican school board members that backed intelligent design were ousted yesterday in York County, Pennsylvania - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette via Tobermory via Neal Boortz.


Catching up with The Screensavers

Y'all may recall that I was a big fan of The ScreenSavers on TechTV before it was cannibalized by G4 and eventually transformed into Attack of the Show (man what a stupid name). I've watched it a little recently & it's better than it was but still not like the old show. Googling the old hosts revealed a cavalcade of video & audio webcasts that are much like the show I used to really enjoy - Patrick Norton's DigitalLife TV, Leo Laporte's this Week in Tech (with Patrick as well), and Kevin Rose has several projects and also backs digg - which is a great tech news source. These guys were like the 'tech evening news' & I'm glad to see they've adapted. I guess I will too.


Solar Power Update

InformationWeek - DARPA Funds Solar Power For Battlefield

The show is a lot of fun & I enjoy seeing people get carried away.

statesman.com | How 'Lost' reinvented television

Cyberpunk Becomes Reality, part...I forget.

The liner used a sonic blaster to foil the pirates. Developed by American forces to deter small boats from attacking warships, the non-lethal weapon sends out high-powered air vibrations that blow assailants off their feet. - Sunday Times Online


If I were one, I'd be Catholic - they seem to know how to have a good time and

A Vatican cardinal said Thursday the faithful should listen to what secular modern science has to offer, warning that religion risks turning into "fundamentalism" if it ignores scientific reason.FOXNews.com.


These are our kind of filmmakers

2005 Liberty Film Festival was held this October 21-23, 2005 in West Hollywood. Just reviewing the list of films will make you feel better. (expands on post from Tobermory).


Not a particularly great list, but interesting...

Total Film (a British film site/mag) has put together a book of the 100 Greatest Movies Of All Time. (expands on a link from Tobermory).


Newt weighs in.

Newt Gingrich was a great backbencher in the 80's and helped change America (mostly for the better) with the "Contract with America" congressional victory in 1994. He picked the wrong fights when he got in charge & he should have held off on the book deal, but he knows what he's talking about. (Unfortunately he does still believe government can solve problems.) Nonetheless he seems quite reasonable these days and voices my thinking on Bush's nomination of Miers quite succinctly. There is no way Bush will nominate a "Souter" - Newt G.

Okay, I may have to come out of retirement.

Europe's top chessboxer packs a punch

Okay Firefly/Serenity Friends (& Freaks)

The first nine minutes, free & legal.Vividas Streaming Page


I love geeks, particularly science+history geeks

MIT:2.009 Product Engineering Processes: Archimedes Death Ray: Idea Feasibility Testing

My favorite poet

Recordings of Dylan Thomas reading his works and those of others (you have to sit through an ad at Salon.com but it is well worth it.

Update: An Salon-free link to my favorite poem: Do not go gentle into that good night.


Our rights are deteriorating before our eyes.

The evil of government bureaucracy & secrecy knows no party lines - DenverPost.com.


We've all heard of being attracted to men in uniform...

Here is an obsessive post of women in uniform by someone at an odd place called - Iran Defence Forum. Tobermory with a shotgun. That is an impressive (and scary) sight.
found while visiting a site gone by memepool.

Adding a new Hero to the pantheon

Don Kirlin - Building Your Own Air Force, One Mig at a Time - Wired.

Somehow this sad excuse for a fanpage is still on the interwebs:

Farscape Links - I canceled my account & moved away over three years ago...

The finest of MST3K obsession I've seen in quite a while

Movie Poster Index and the website it's on.



I would expect no less

Senior officials in Louisiana's emergency planning agency already were awaiting trial over allegations stemming from a federal investigation into waste, mismanagement and missing funds when Hurricane Katrina struck - Los Angeles Times

Either you understand it or you don't.

Leptoprin Woman starin' at me.

Leptoprin Woman, what do you see?

Leptoprin Woman close your eyes.

Leptoprin Woman, she never cries.

Leptoprin Woman, "You must be obese."

Leptoprin Woman, she gives me no peace.

(warbled in a honky-tonk singsong).


English Cricket hero understands life's rewards.

"That means I can drive a flock of sheep through the town centre, drink for free in no less than 64 pubs and get a lift home with the police when I become inebriated. "What more could you want?" - link.



The Song Remains the Same.

Comforting somehow. Malleteers get it and the University still doesn't - MontgomeryAdvertiser.com :: University destroys students' waterfall.


Back with a vengeance.

After a (still unresolved) hard drive crash imposed exile the Chronicles of Tobermory are back!


Our kind of General.

"He came off the doggone chopper, and he started cussing and people started moving" - CNN.com - Lt. Gen. Honore


One of the best stories of a bad week.

"Eighteen-year-old Jabbor Gibson jumped aboard the bus as it sat abandoned on a street in New Orleans and took control. "I just took the bus and drove all the way here...seven hours straight,' Gibson admitted. "I hadn't ever drove a bus." The teen packed it full of complete strangers and drove to Houston. He beat thousands of evacuees slated to arrive there - NEWSCHANNEL 5.


A War to Be Proud Of

Christopher Hitchens is the best ex-leftie EVAR.

This one might interest Tobermory (or any other Graphic Artist freaks out there).

Desperately Wandering » Become a Photoshop Expert

Frustrated by Ignorance (what else is new?)

I hope all two of you have been entertained by my coverage of the Flying Spaghetti Monster movement - Pastafarianism. I've latched onto this because, well first because it's funny, but also because I see otherwise intelligent kids in my class every day who are being taught by their families/church that the earth is 6000 years old. I tell them that Asian hunters crossed into North America during the last Ice Age over 12,000 years ago and that the fossil rock on my desk is about 350 million years old and the kids with actual families, who feed them & take them to church, their little eyes boggle with cognitive dissonance. I explain (very briefly) the decay of Carbon 14 and how these things are determined, but I'm standing against the almighty. I wonder if the adoption of radical ideas by so many kids in college is aided by the fact that thier families fill them up with this ascientific claptrap before they get there. So useful ideas like reason, liberty, & patriotism, are tossed out when the kids reject the absurdities their parents foisted upon them. (Okay I'm definitely not getting a principal's job any time soon).


Sheehan undone.

Interesting - Bush shown kissing Cindy Sheehan on cheek at first meeting - WorldNetDaily

He's out there, watching...


Summer Reading

I read these this summer, all 3000 pages & now I'm at a bit of a loss. Stuart history is one of my favorite periods & Stephenson is one of my favorite writers. It will take a little while for me to go back to fiction. For now I'm reading Gladwell's The Tipping Point.



Links I'm adding:

LiveScience.com, JunkScience.com, & OpinionJournal - Best of the Web Today.

Cool. But I'm not sure I could live in them.

The micro compact home and Six Houses of the Future. (from Boing Boing).

Could explain alot...

Is Your Boss a Psychopath? in Fast Company.


There is a double boatload of fun on this page.

Internet phenomenon - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

All Hail the Noodly Master

Coming soon to a school board near you, the Flying Spaghetti Monster (from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia). The latest attempt by fundamentalists to inject religion into science, this time in Kansas, has led to demands for recognition by the cult of the "Noodly Master".
The Original Open Letter
Inevitable CafePress Merchandise
99,000+ links at Google Search


Evironmentalists responsible for shuttle problems.

Gotta research this. I spoke to teacher whose husband works for NASA. She said the problem with the foam coming off the tank began when they stopped techs from cleaning the fuel tanks using foam made with freon! Interesting.

Update: Here's a NewsMax article with a similar, but slightly different, take.
And JunkScience two years ago.


Amazing Redneck Video

All of you must watch this video montage of great redneck photos -
set to Duelling Banjos of course - Link.



This was a Canadian worth learning about

Last Canadian Victoria Cross winner Ernest Alva (Smoky) Smith dies - "The pair were no sooner into a ditch when a Panther came toward them, firing all the way. Smith waited until the 45-tonne vehicle was less than 10 metres away before he jumped out from his cover, laid down and fired back. He scored a direct hit, disabling the tank."

Immediately, 10 German Panzergrenadier troops jumped off and charged him. "I killed four of them with my tommy gun. That scared them off. They were up close -- about 10 feet or so."
Another tank opened fire. More enemy began closing on Smith's position. Smith grabbed more magazines and "steadfastly held his position,'' said the citation.

"It was just a bunch of rocks,'' Smith said. "You're not fighting on the prairies, you know. You try and keep out of sight. You find yourself a hunk of ground you can hang on to. That's the way you win wars, I think.'' He fired another round at an approaching tank. It turned away. As each German neared him, Smith fired at them. The rest eventually turned and withdrew "in disorder,'' the citation said. "Even Germans don't like to be shot,'' Smith said.

Dead Germans lay strewn all over the road. "I don't take prisoners. Period,'' Smith said 60 years later. "I'm not paid to take prisoners. I'm paid to kill them. That's all there is to it.''


Calling General Pershing.

I don't think we realize how serious the border problem is. Mexican mercenaries expand base into U.S.. Something is going to have to be done. Or the border just sort of disappears. I could see that.

Just speculating on a hypothesis

Just as we are getting more mobile access to information and communication as indivduals (with cellphones & wifi), the dueling banjos of Islamo-fascism and 'personal preference as public policy' self-righteous do-gooders seek to erode our way of life and our freedoms. Until the majority starts taking the war being waged against our system from the outside seriously and recognizes that our rights as individuals are being slowly eroded by the socialist 'love of banning things' at home, we're in trouble.


The Fruits of Multiculturalism

From a column in the Australian "With hindsight, the defining encounter of the age was not between Mohammed Atta's jet and the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, but that between Mohammed Atta and Johnelle Bryant a year earlier. Bryant is an official with the US Department of Agriculture in Florida... The meeting got off to a rocky start when Atta refused to deal with Bryant because she was but a woman...When it was explained to him that, alas, he wouldn't get the 650 grand in cash that day, Atta threatened to cut Bryant's throat. He then pointed to a picture behind her desk showing an aerial view of downtown Washington - the White House, the Pentagon et al - and asked: "How would America like it if another country destroyed that city and some of the monuments in it?" - (from Instapundit). Also - FrontPageMag, ABCNEWS.


Chronicles of Tobermory: "Eco-swindlers" is a perfect label

A great short read on fighting against deliberate ignorance - "How the humanity is to defend itself against eco-swindlers and believers in supernatural phenomena".


Too Cool for Words

This the sort of thing the internet is made for:
a great hack for Moon Landing Day
Google Moon - Lunar Landing Sites (zoom all the way in for secret moon info).


He taught us all the important lesson of explaining to our boss that what he wants is extremely difficult, if not impossible, and then delivering it - Scotty of 'Star Trek' Dead at 85.
Outstanding Scotty .wavs.


When it happens you heard it here first:

Edith (Joy) Clement will be the President's nominee to replace Justice O'Connor on the Supreme Court - Hadley Arkes on the Supreme Court and Women on National Review Online. Update: I was ahead of the pundits, but we were both wrong - Bush Picks John G. Roberts for Supreme Court.


Website/Blog for Freakanomics - I like these guys

Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything
by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner.


Ok. I know it's loony. But I love this stuff.

The MDI Air Car - the world´s cleanest car.

In Contrast: "The End of Europe"

Column explaining exactly why Europe is in decline - too many government benefits from high taxes that slow economic growth coupled with low birth rates that aren't offset by immigration, that they don't want anyway - washingtonpost.com .

The deficit is shrinking, thanks to the Bush tax cuts.

OpinionJournal - Featured Article


Camille's Smart Chicks

Camille Paglia's Top Ten Women Philosophers - Independent Online Edition




  Although he lacked the soundbites
  of Marx and the attitude of Sartre,
  David Hume should be recognised as
  the finest philosopher of all time - Sunday Herald.


United States Radar Loop



Prophet of the Decline of Eurabia

"Oriana Fallaci, one of the most renowned journalists of the modern era, has been indicted by a judge in her native Italy under provisions of the Italian Penal Code which proscribe the "vilipendio," or "vilification," of "any religion admitted by the state." In her case, the religion deemed vilified is Islam, and the vilification was perpetrated, apparently, in a book she wrote last year--and which has sold many more than a million copies all over Europe--called "The Force of Reason." Its astringent thesis is that the Old Continent is on the verge of becoming a dominion of Islam, and that the people of the West have surrendered themselves fecklessly to the "sons of Allah." - OpinionJournal - Citizen of the World

Solar Power & WiFi - Now we're getting somewhere.

  Be Your Own Hotspot - Popular Science


Bullseye: Deep Impact Slams Into Comet


More Deep Impact

  At least some part of the government
  is useful (besides the military)
  NASA - Deep Impact Images.
  I want to be an astronaut when I grow up.

The 4th

Check out some great 4th of July links over at the Chronicles of Tobermory.

The Grand Union Flag - America's first national flag.


Without caffiene, life itself would not be feasible.

  A review of a new book on
  the importance of coffee
  to human advance -
  "Brain Brew" by Brendan I. Koerner.
  The information from the book is interesting,
  the review itself, not so much.

This is well worth the price of admission:

Boing Boing: Group proposes to build hotel on Justice Souter's house property


Exactly what led to Tobermory's Stalin reading list.

They've got used to freedom, so why do Russians still hunger for the USSR? - Telegraph | Opinion

Catching up with the Supreme Court



Historians will know.

Not many people know who Gen. Bernard Schriever was - Architect of Air Force space and missile programs dies. A tribute by the current Commander of Air Force Space Command says that without Schriever, "technologically, it's accurate to say, we would be decades behind where we are now." Here is a bio at The New Mexico Museum of Space History International Space Hall of Fame -
Bernard A. Schriever.

I'm stunned by this. Is there still a Fifth Amendment?

Supreme Court Rules Cities May Seize Homes - Forbes.com.
- (from Paul and Ferlie).

More: Neal Boortz is livid and spells out the problem with this decision.


Okay. This could be important.

Common virus kills cancer, study finds - Yahoo! News

One year ago today - SpaceShipOne.

You know we're space junkies around here. I can't believe it's already been a year since the first civilian space flight - SpaceShipOne. Things never go perfectly, & despite the failure of the solar sail launch (I wouldn't trust a Soviet ICBM with my spaceship), there is good space news from the Mojave - Rutan's White Knight Carries X-37 Space Plane Aloft. Data on the X-37 and a photoblog of this morning's activities.


Alternate Shuttle Aces Early Test

This a new idea for launching rockets into space at high altitude. The rocket is released from the plane and falls into a vertical position before firing. Eliminating the need for wings (which are apparently more unstable), and the danger to the carrier plane that released the rocket. The SpaceShipOne guys are involved. You guys know this is one of our obsessions. The photo is a composite, showing how the rocket falls into takeoff position - Wired News.

Close friends make longer life more likely

New Scientist Breaking News


Use del.icio.us

By the way, if your not using del.icio.us to keep up with bookmarks & tag them by subject, you should look into it. It plays into my collecting & organizing of info mania. Here are my links. Here's a great way to see what's new & what's popular there - Del.icio.us popular sites.

Someone Comes to Town, Someone Leaves Town

Cory Doctorow is an interesting character. I first learned of him while reading The Complete Idiot's Guide to Publishing Science Fiction. (Yes PC, a book about writing a book.) He'd published a few stories by then, but now he has several stories & three novels published. My favorite story is 0wnz0red. He works for the Electronic Frontier Foundation. He is one of the members of the net's most popular blog - BoingBoing. His novels are made freely available under the Creative Commons Liscence and his really anti-DRM, anti-restrictions on tech advances for fear of copyright violation. I exchanged e-mails with him last summer when I told him I thought that bb was too pro-Democrat instead of pro-libertarian. I was impressed that he replied. His latest book comes out today & it's more odd than usual - Someone Comes to Town, Someone Leaves Town. There was a lot of action on it over at del.icio.us, which brought it to my attention.

Sometimes the NBA can be a little interesting.

I'm not a big basketball fan. I love the NCAA Tournament for the brackets. I cheer for Alabama until we get put out. I have a soft spot for the Celtics, because of Havlicek and Larry Byrd. I pull for the Mavericks, because I find Mark Cuban entertaining. And I really like Tim Duncan. He went to school all four years. He's a good guy. He's well-spoken. He's won championships. He may actually be a role model. So I pull for him. I also always look out for Robert Horry. He was at Alabama when I was finishing there the first time and we had great teams, and probably should have gone farther. He's won two champoionships with the Houston Rockets & Hakeem, during the Jordan Interegnum and he also was on the three Shaq-Kobe championship teams, making some important shots along the way. Now he's with Tim Duncan and just pulled the Spurs out of the fire in Game 5. It's great to see an old Bama guy still knocking 'em down - Horry never ceases to amaze & Big Shot Bob bags another one.

How did I not know this existed?

The Internet Speculative Fiction Database


We knew Curt Schilling played Evercrack, but man he's 'beyond my comprehension'.

Everquest 2 WarCry


dooce - there is some hilarious 'parenting humor' at this website that several of my procreating friends will enjoy (it's one of the top linked blogs on the internet) - and you must read this, which I got from her - I just have to figure out how he printed this.
update:main link went dead

Picasso, I'm not.

Off to paint my classroom (school provides the paint, we provide the labor).

Christopher Hitchens is the most erudite ex-leftist alive.

Confessions of a Dangerous Mind - Plus, Amnesty's amnesia By Christopher Hitchens. from Chronicles of Tobermory - which is outstanding today.


Getting Things Done.

I'm implementing a personal organization system
based on the book Getting Thing Done by David Allen.
I read the book & have begun to apply the concepts to my personal stuff, house stuff, and school stuff. Now that I'll be taking classes as well I'll integrate that into the system.
I'm also making a wiki, Next Action, to examine & present the material in the book in summary form, mainly for my self, but for anyone else as well (using a cool new free webtool pbWiki). I'm half way through skimming the book a second time & highlighting the pertinent lists & ideas. We'll see how it goes.

I'm a grad student again.

To those of you who were crossing fingers for me: I used my bureaucratic fast-talk skill (actually e-mail) and resolved everything to get enrolled at The University of West Alabama to start taking online classes towards a teaching MA to add to my other MA and then I'll move on to various other educational certifications. Back in the saddle.


In case I hadn't told everyone - I got tenured. So I'll be dug in like a tick now.


The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press

The information about the makeup of the electorate was good reading (& frustrating that Libertarians are not even part of the typology) - Link.

Penn Jillette names daughter Moxie CrimeFighter

St. Petersburg Times: Entertainment news and features


From CoT: VDH rips the hypocrisy of privileged Anti-Westerners

VDH's Private Papers:Our Spoiled and Unhappy Global Elites

Sith has a shot at overtaking Titanic

I always get diverted by looking at All-Time Box Office totals. As a recovering baseball stat geek, I require that my numbers be examined in context, which is why I love the All-time Adjusted for Ticket Price Inflation list.


Too much Star Trek fun

Memory Alpha is a collaborative project to create the most definitive, accurate, and accessible encyclopedia and reference for everything related to Star Trek. The database is organized in a WikiWiki structure, which allows an incredible level of interconnectedness and expansion.


Chess & the Cold War


All is forgiven George. Welcome back.

Revenge of the Sith is simply outstanding. I've been waiting for this movie my entire adult life. Star Wars has permeated everything. It is our mythology. After reading Kevin Smith's review a few weeks ago I started to get excited again. The critics have been incredibly positive, and they usually don't get science fiction. I skipped school (easier when you're the teacher) & we went to the noon showing. It was well worth it. I haven't stopped smiling all day.


A fine list indeed...

Right Wing News (Conservative News and Views): "If I Could Only Read 20 Political Websites For The Next Year..."

Google ticks off the French. I'm in favor.

Wired News

Senate approves electronic ID card bill

CNET News.com



Free Online Graph Paper / Grid Paper PDFs

This is geek nirvana here, just need slide rules - www.incompetech.com

NASA Developing Robots with Human Traits

Pretty much says it all NASA .


Charter Schools Offer Incentives To Lure Students From Public Schools

TheDenverChannel.com - News

E=mc2 centenary survey


Who wouldn't want to take this class?

College course teaches students to brew medieval beer and make their own chain mail - The Johnsonian - History professor gets medival with hobby.

Solar cell implant may restore some sight for the blind

Surgeons implanted Artificial Silicon Retina (ASR) microchips in the eyes of five patients to treat vision loss caused by retinitis pigmentosa (RP) - link.



Putin bemoans collapse of Soviet empire

What's sad is that this is no surprise - USATODAY.com.


EQ gods decide - If you can't beat 'em, join 'em.

Sony will create their own market for in-game goods - Wired News: Sony Gets Real on Virtual Goods.


The Number Of F--ks In Deadwood

An impressive work of cultural significance - counting the number of f-bombs on one of the best shows on TV - West Virginia Surf Report.


Using satellite imaging tecniques to read Ancient Greek trash

The Light Of Reason : explains about "Oxyrhynchus Papyri" & how our knowledge of the Classical World may greatly increase,


Wired News: Surprises Lurk in Satellite Snaps

Wired News: Surprises Lurk in Satellite Snaps

What did I say? Guess it's a badge of honor.

From my friend J.M., who teaches/coaches in Tennessee:
"http://mikeray.blogspot.com/ has been identified as inappropriate and blocked by your Tennessee Department of Education Internet Usage Policy. Access to web sites that have been identified as providing inappropriate content will be blocked. This determination is based upon various content categories. Content identified as inappropriate includes:
adult-oriented material, extremist-militant material, racist or hate-oriented material, and incitement of resistance to or insurrection against lawful authority (seditious material).
" Could there be a more pro-American, pro-individual rights, historian in Alabama? Must be the sex toys...


An anti-communist reading list

An outstanding list from Mike S. Adams at Townhall.com (by way of CoT).


Okay, we win, commies lose...again.

Indy French filmmaker has to pay rights fee for a character whistling the 'The Internationale' Yahoo News.


Yes, Evolution is a Theory.

It's Religion and Politics that are the Problems - LiveScience.


Space Shuttle Moved to Launch Pad

Getting ready for a May 6 launch - Yahoo! News.


Picture taken at Miami Beach - note the three swimmers - Article


Google Feature Incorporates Satellite Maps

This is too cool - with jealousy from - Yahoo! News.

Warden's Wife: Killer Held Me Captive 10 Years

I remember when this happened. I'm not buying this one.

If you want to get away, you get away, period - FOXNews.com .

Partial Solar Eclipse: April 8, 2005

NASA goodness


A Party Inverted

Bill Bradley explains how the Republicans are btter organized than the Democrats. NYT - login: cantbeatbug password: cantbeatbug.

ESPN's Chris Mortensen: One of a kind

Arkansas QB Matt Jones was the best player I saw in the SEC this year. He's the kind of guy you want on your team - ESPN.com.


I think I'll start checking this one.

Links to editorials - RealClearPolitics



Now Kyrgyzstan - Locke beats Hobbes...again.

My Way News

An Actual GateTree Rant

From an email I sent to a few friends in response to media focus on the mundane, yet sensational (Atlanta Court Murders) as opposed to the potentially world-changing (Beirut demonstrations):

"There is little doubt that cable news, even my
sainted FoxNews is about ratings.

Why else would the last week (and in fact this is only
internet news, since the TV has been playing DVD's
like Fawlty Towers in a loop this week - spring break!
woo hoo!) the news has been swamped with Terry
Schiavo. Even such noted bloggers as
Paul and Ferlie and
Chronicles of Tobermory
have been on the story.

Does it really matter if some guy in Florida (it's
always florida, isn't it) pulls the plug on his
brain-damaged wife? Grandstanding congressmen
(steroids!, steriods? c'mon) and tearjerking newscasts
are why people like us pick & choose our news from the

With only my poli sci, history, and info junkie
experience to guide me, I think that there will be
change in a few places, like Lebanon, where the
baseless Syrian occupation has finally come under
scutiny, and I think you will see a loosening of
electoral freedom in largely westernized Egypt and
then a lot of lipservice and small, easily reversible,
reforms in the absolute monarchies. One can hope
that this will lead to democratic movements in Iran
(which has large democratic youth movement), and other
theocracies, monarchies & dictatorships (Libya

Sort of like Enlightenment era changes in Britain &
America & France (beware violent revolutions) and the
lip service that Prussia, Austria & Russia paid to
enlightenment reform, before reverting to a tightened

The more recent, and often cited examples, maybe the
Berlin Wall in a few places - Iraq & Lebanon - &
possibly Tiananmen Square in others - Saudi.

Westerners must remember that change like this can
take a lot of time. I just read an article about the
economic problems of Germany that stem from
reunification (& I suspect, largely socialist economic
policies). It has been 15 years & they are still
sorting it out.

I think it is arrogant to believe that becuase people in the
Middle East do not have a democratic tradition, they don't
want to be free. Sounds a bit like Hobbes
_Leviathan_, assuming that people cannot handle
freedom and must be ruled by a powerful ruler. If
Locke & the social contract has worked for the West,
why can't it work for the Middle East?

A science project after my own heart

Solar Death Ray

I see HSL in my future

Chronicles of Tobermory


Men, 60 and 62, plead guilty to pot trafficking

Our friends, Paul and Ferlie, are looking into the house next door - "Agents searched Ringman's 4407 W. Pleasant Acres Drive home and seized $8,000 in cash and more than a pound of marijuana" - Link. It has been privately owned since November 2002.


Mobile pizza trucks deliver fast food

Pizzas cooked in the van as you're ordering - I approve - via Engadget.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation

These guys - EFF Homepage - have been around since the early 90's, when the internet was The WELL and Compuserve and are in the middle of the Grokster Supreme Court case, which should update the 1984 Betamax ruling that legalized VCRs, establishing the legality of internet technologies, including file-sharing. Thank the Law of Averages for them.


Wikipedia is run by Vegas' brother.

Johnny "Vegas" Wales was a particularly smelly resident of The Mallet Assembly, the honors dorm I lived in and then was director of, at The University of Alabama in the late nineties. He left school to go work for his brother's internet company, which turned out to be Bomis. Now it seems that Vegas' brother is the guy behind Wikipedia - Wired 13.03: The Book Stops Here.


13 (scientific) things that do not make sense

New Scientist

Tobermory gave us this one today

You know, it may be confusing to quasi-colonial leftist snobs, but people want to be free. Oppression is not a desirable state of affairs. - Charles Krauthammer: Vindicated


Del.icio.us and CoT

I am an info-geek - "We must have information". I have almanacs for the last 15 years, but I hardly use them anymore because I can find anything, anytime, on the internet. Of course, this can be a huge distraction from getting things done.

I have begun to try to organize my e-mail with gmail labels. I'm trying to organize links with del.icio.us and have been looking for new sites the Firefox extension Stumbleupon.

Of course this has meant less attention to my own link-blogging, especially since I have gotten CRL to give me the morning's best news/opinion/science at Chronicles of Tobermory. Also, our friends Paul and Ferlie have a newborn, Veronica & I have been keeping up with them on their blogs. Our friends Billy & Beth have a five month-old, Jack, who will one day be a Left Tackle for Alabama it appears. Billy came to visit a couple of weeks ago & we cooked huge steaks. My dad came to visit last Sunday & I cooked ribs & made my sauce. Company & cooking meat go together around here.

At work/school we gave the graduation exam, so it was unproductive all week teaching-wise. However I had drilled my 10th graders with the info necessary to pass the test. I expect to blow the top off of the test. It's not really that hard to pass, and I harrassed them with the info so much, maybe they can not have to deal with that one again. (I found an interesting dodge to the exam - in Maine.)

So, to see the stuff I've been looking at lately, check del.ico.ous and the Chronicles of Tobermory.



The Claremont Institute

The mission of The Claremont Institute is to restore the principles of the American Founding to their rightful, preeminent authority in our national life. - The Claremont Institute

Power Line

A fine right-thinking political blog - Power Line


Astronomy Picture of the Day

From the top of Mt. Everest

The Most Useful Web Sites (for Reporters)

An outstanding list of information sources on the internet - Link


The Arab Street - A vanquished cliche'?

My favorite erudite former commie - Christopher Hitchens.

Photos: Segway revs new models

CNET News.com

Sun's Temper Blamed for Arctic Ozone Loss

Imagine that. Ozine deoletion caused by solar flares, not chlorflourocarbons - Live Science.

Photo Gallery of Lebanese Anti-Protest

AOL News - Syrian Leader Hints at Lebanon Pullout

Free Speech, but not Sex Toys, in Alabama

My home state may be taking a beating on sex toys, but at least the students at the University of Alabama are standing up to the Faculty Senate over free speech and "hate speech codes. Not the first time students have stood up - the University, more than once, has tried to stop the diplay of flags in dorm windows. The pictures are from the Mallet Assembly, in Byrd Hall, where we once lived and were a live-in advisor. Other links - here , here, here, and here.


Whither The Wall Street Journal?

The Wall Street Journal is invisible online (except for Best of the Web) & people are turning to Forbes.com for busines news for Wired News.

Battlestar Galactica Ep.1 can be viewed online - smart move.

SCIFI.COM | Battlestar Galactica

Our Godless Constitution

Skip the opening swipe at Bush and dig in you pagan swine - Brooke Allen.


Calvin and Hobbes

All of it...

WW2 Iwo Jima flag raising - 60th anniversary

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Taliban Giving Up In Afghanistan?

We don't hear anything about Afghanistan anymore from the MSM.
Wonder why... Captain's Quarters.


Exaggerated Science:

How Global Warming Research is Creating a Climate of Fear - SPIEGEL ONLINE


The Top 100 Gadgets of All Time

I have used or been in the presence of a high percentage of these -
Mobile PC.


Fight Club = Calvin & Hobbes

Are Jack & Tyler actually Calvin & Hobbes grown up? - Metaphilm.


Inventor Kurzweil Aiming to Live Forever

Twenty years til immortality:RedNova News. So much for life insurance.


How the web works

If Salon is shocked that Amazon.com might be using the website, 43 Things, to gather consumer info, will they also be shocked that the Amazon link on my blog post is actually a link that goes through my Amazon partner-store and that if you bought something using it I would get a miniscule cut? For an "internet-savvy webzine" they don't seem to understand how the web work$.

Amazon's 43 secrets

At Salon.com Technology (sit through an ad) a short article about a site I looked at yesterday, 43 Things, and that it is owned by Amazon.com. Not ominous or anything, but clever.


Was shaky McNabb sick during Super Bowl?

ESPN reports that McNabb was out of it during the Super Bowl. Kinda showed...

Web color thing

A web-device for determining hexadecimal color code:moreCrayons - slider - vera nice.

Design Within Reach

Home Design Shopping:
Design Within Reach: Modern Design, In Stock and Ready to Ship.

Tobermory is under the weather

Word is that Tobermory of The Chronicles of Tobermory is under the weather.
Activities will resume tomorrow after considersable consumption of Hot & Sour Soup.


Superbowl Commercials 2005

Best Super Bowl Ad Site Evar: AOL Sports.

Gigapxl Project

Gigapxl Project


Day By Day

The best political cartoon on the internet: Day By Day by Chris Muir.


What if Bush has been right about Iraq all along?

Mark Brown of the Sun-times is facing this harsh reality for the anti-war crowd.


Ringers: Lord of the Fans,

A sympathetic documentary on LotR fans - Wired News.

Turning The Tables On PETA

Center for Consumer Freedom from The Chronicles of Tobermory

Centuries' Old UFO Coin Remains Mystery


Fictitious Jumping Mouse Loses Federal Protection

The Preble's meadow jumping mouse, once seen as a costly impediment to development, is now viewed by the government as a critter that never really existed — and is no longer in need of federal protection under the Endangered Species Act. Yahoo! News

Atheism and children

Center for Inquiry Metro New York - Natalie Angier lecture


Searchable 'Buffy' cast, writer, director and episode database. I know people who will need this.



CoT Rules

The Chronicles of Tobermory, despite my obvious prejudice, continues to be a great source for news links.


Johnny Carson is dead.

I always enjoyed The Tonight Show when I was young - MSNBC.

Expect election day tire-slashing charges Monday

Remember the slashing of Republican tires in Milwaukee? Democrats to be charged. Geniuses bragged about it.

Score one for the evil 'West' and Liberty

Yushchenko Sworn In as President of Ukraine - FOXNews.com.


The War Against World War IV

In Commentary by Norman Podhoretz.

We have recon troops in Iran? Oh c'mon...


Free Iraqi

Blog by a pro-election Iraqi in Baghdad.

Fossils could fill gaps in human evolution

Remains from Ethiopia date back 4.5 million years - MSNBC - from CoT.

Gladiators- more show business than slaughter?

British Association for Roman Archaeology reserach suggests that gladiator combat may not have all been to the death -
Scotsman.com News.

Is your luggage safe at the airport?

What? "Airport Security" people stealing from luggage? No!?! link

Titan a 'Flammable' Moon Covered in Liquid Gas

Luckily for the solar system's second biggest moon there's no oxygen,
so there's no fire (fire, fire) - Yahoo! News.


Way Too Much God

Peggy Noonan, speechwriting goddess, on Bush's inauguration speech.


What is its Relative Value in U.S. Dollars?

Economic History Resources

From Corrupt Govt. Officials Dept:

Reason Magazine

Dave Barry for the NYT

Dave Barry quit his column last week. We need good libertarians wherever we can get them.

From the "Solar Power is Free!!" Dept:

I may yet be right about this:
Spray-On Solar-Power Cells Are True Breakthrough
thanks to CoT.


Fantasy Movies Hot in '05

From CoT: FOXNews.com .

Chronicles of Tobermory

A news link blog that I harassed into existence: Chronicles of Tobermory.


ET Visitors: Scientists See High Likelihood

This really cool. Scientists actually saying, there's got to be something out here - Space.com.
"It takes away the ‘not invented here’ prejudice, pointing out that a ‘yes’ to ET visitation is exactly what side our current physics and astrophysics theories would come down on as the most likely situation," Haisch concluded.


Huygens Probe

Latest space geek event:
First Images of Titan's Surface

The Rebels and the Redcoats

One of my students wondered today how the British might view the American Revolution (which we are studying). I found this:
BBC - History - The American War of Independence.


Ukraine Transition Brings Worry Over Past

Yahoo! News - Also, Yulia Tymoshenko likely to be Ukraine's Prime Minister.

US Geological Survey Photo Archive

Really cool - Digital Data Series DDS-21


Philip K. Dick Official Site

CRL & I are making a push to increase our sci-fi consumption. I have been looking up info on the most well-known/successful sci-fi people. This site is more elaborate than most - Philip K. Dick - Science Fiction Author - Official Site.

Rolling Rock

Mudslide Madness: A boulder some 25 feet high blocks both lanes of the Topanga Caynon Road.

Unintended Hiatus

Sorry for the break. School started back & several friends came to visit this past wekend. I have several links stored up, here we go:



Cool Flash game : Destroy the Castle - Hard, but doable - Invasion, I've made it to lvl 7.

Procrastination Short

Gotta Get My Stuff Done

Video Rentals Slowly Dying

When's the last time you rented a movie? - DenverPost.com

The year in games

Review of the year in games from several different people in the industry - Salon.com Technology.

Pixar on National Review Online

Interview with one of the main guys at Pixar, who started out as a janitor/security.


Progress in Iraq you may not have heard about

Power Line

British 'angel' saved hundreds from tsunami with classroom knowledge

Sometimes you actually learn useful stuff in school:
Yahoo! News

Sinkhole Followup

A boatload of info on our favorite sinkhole. Check out the slideshow:
1,282 Truckloads Of Sand Fill Massive Sinkhole.