Saturday, November 30, 2013

Too Much Information

"Elephants, antelopes and horses are among modern animals who defecate in socially agreed hotspots - to mark territory and reduce the spread of parasites.

But their best efforts are dwarfed by the enormous scale of this latrine - which breaks the previous record "oldest toilet" by 220 million years.

Fossil "coprolites" as wide as 40cm and weighing several kilograms were found in seven massive patches across the Chanares Formation in La Rioja province.

Some were sausage-like, others pristine ovals...

Giant prehistoric toilet unearthed in colours ranging from whitish grey to dark brown-violet."

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Friday, November 29, 2013

Very Interesting

Genetic Strategies to Detect Genes Involved in Alcoholism and Alcohol–Related Traits
"Alcoholism is one of the most common and costly health problems in the United States. Substantial evidence from family, twin, and adoption studies suggests that genetic factors play a role both in normal patterns of alcohol use and in alcohol use disorders (i.e., alcohol abuse and dependence). It is estimated that approximately 50 to 60 percent of the variance in alcohol dependence can be attributed to genetic factors (McGue 1999). Researchers are currently attempting to identify the specific genes involved in patterns of alcohol use and alcohol dependence. These efforts are complicated by the complex nature of alcoholism and its development. Thus, although studies have convincingly demonstrated that genes play a role in the development of alcoholism, the same studies have also provided strong evidence for the importance of environmental factors."

Is alcoholism in our DNA? Researchers link gene mutation to excessive drinking
"A single mutation in the gene can scramble the chemical messages that inhibit drinking, compromising the body’s ability to consume alcohol in moderation, researchers found.

Experiments on mice found that those with mutant copies of the Gabrb1 gene preferred drinking diluted alcohol over water, in contrast to those with normal genes."
"Although some humans drink excessively for a variety of reasons, the findings suggest that a few may be more genetically at risk of alcoholism, researchers said."

Alcohol-Dependence Gene Identified
"The gene is related to a receptor that allows for the movement of Gamma-amino butyric acid (GABA) between nerve cells. GABA is the major inhibitory chemical in the central nervous system.

"There were lines of evidence from other studies -- animal studies, in vitro studies -- that suggested GABA receptors are involved in the behavioral effects of alcohol," says lead author Danielle M. Dick, Ph.D., research assistant professor of psychiatry at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. "Because GABA receptor genes were likely candidates and previous studies had linked this area on chromosome 15 to alcoholism, we zeroed in on three GABA receptor genes but only found significant association with one of them.""
"Dick says it is important to point out that genetic make-up does not necessarily mean a person is doomed to become an alcoholic.

"One reason it is so difficult to find genes involved in psychiatric disorders is that there is an interplay between genetic and environmental factors," she says. "A person can carry all kinds of genes that predispose them to alcohol dependence, but if they never take a drink, they won't become an alcoholic."
I remember years and years ago this theory got some coverage in the news. The then head of the Federation of Saskatchewan Indians called it racist, of course. I wonder if we'll get a similar outcry concerning this research. Can't take the blame entirely off the evil "White Man", now can we. After all, he should have known this, three or four hundred years ago.

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Thursday, November 28, 2013

Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting...

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

You Know?

Sometimes I sit here and thank God I was born where I was. Listening to this video below, I can all the more fully appreciate the freedom and traditions (especially with respect to parliamentary democracy, despite its flaws, which are few) of being a descendant of the very Great Britain. Not withstanding that I am of English descent myself, I'd say we all have it pretty good:

The Development of Democracy in the UK

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Very Interesting!!

Remember a few years ago when the young people were literally yelling for freedom from the rooftops, when the regime forced to go inside and make babies?

Well, it seems they went inside but they didn't babies:

The Dead's Envy for the Living

Many commentators, most eloquently Bret Stephens at the Wall Street Journal, draw a parallel between the appeasement of Hitler at Munich in 1938 and the appeasement of Iran at Geneva. There is another, more chilling parallel: Iran's motive for proposing to annihilate the Jewish State is the same as Hitler's, and the world's indifference to the prospect of another Holocaust is no different today than it was in 1938. It is the dead's envy for the living.
"Dying civilizations are the most dangerous, and Iran is dying. Its total fertility rate probably stands at just 1.6 children per female, the same level as Western Europe, a catastrophic decline from 7 children per female in the early 1980s. Iran's present youth bulge will turn into an elderly dependent problem worse than Europe's in the next generation and the country will collapse. That is why war is likely, if not entirely inevitable."
"...a generation hence, there will be two elderly dependents for every three workers, compared to 7 elderly dependents for every 93 workers today. That is a death sentence for a poor country, and at this point it is virtually irreversible."
"...the steepest decline in fertility in the history of the world."
"Iran's leaders know this quite well. Its universities have competent demographers who helped frame the first studies of Iran's fertility decline, and its leaders have inveighed for years against the failure of Iranian women to bear children."
"In my 2011 book How Civilizations Die (and How Islam is Dying, Too) I observed that Muslim countries jump from infancy to senescence without passing through adulthood. Wherever Muslim countries have wrenched their people out of traditional society into the modern world, a demographic transition has ensued..."
"This is a culture inherently incapable of reflection on its own deficiencies, one that has nourished itself for 1,200 years on morbid rancor against the Sunni Muslim majority and more recently against the West...."
"The European elite cannot distinguish its own past parody of Israel's election from the self-understanding of the Jewish people as a blessing to all nations by virtue of its unique national life. Israeli nationalism only brings to mind Europe's failed nationalisms and their horrendous denouement in the world wars of the past century. Europe is enervated, exhausted by past wars, aging, hedonistic and cynical. It is not surprising that the nations of Europe once again would avert their eyes to the threat of another Holocaust.

What explains, though, the Obama administration's obsession with a compromise at any cost with the Tehran regime?"
"Obama's commitment to rapprochement with Iran arises from deep personal identification with the supposed victims of imperialism. That is incongruous, to be sure. Persia spent most of his history as one of the nastier imperial powers, and its present rulers are no less ambitious in their pursuit of a pocket empire in the Shi'ite world. The roots of his policy transcend rationality. Israel can present all the evidence in the world of Iran's plans to build nuclear weapons and delivery systems, and the Iranians can cut the Geneva accord into confetti. Obama will remain unmoved. His heart, like his late mother's, beats for the putatively oppressed peoples of the so-called Third World."
"I do not know how Israel will respond. There are too many unknowns in the shifting political equation of the Middle East to solve that equation. But the facts on the ground support the Israeli view that the Geneva accord puts the Jewish State at existential risk."

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Sunday, November 24, 2013

Believe It Or Not

I'm actually going to watch the Grey Cup!!

I'm sitting her drinking a large glass of pure rum, waiting for the Grey cup to begin.
Dom't know if I'll last long enough to watch the game, but at least I won't care. Everything is kinda blurry, and I can't type worth a darn.

Go Riders!!!

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Saturday, November 23, 2013


I remember taking a "History of the Middle Ages" class at university and missing the first couple of days when the Vikings was the topic of the lecture. Alas, I had an abscessed tooth and was busy at the dentist office having a tooth pulled and drugging myself into oblivion with painkillers, so I missed this. But thank God for YouTube (Sorry. Embed not available):

The Vikings: who were they? 1/3

The Vikings: who were they? 2/3

But Haflan was here first!!! (About 21:06 in above video.)

The Vikings: who were they? 3/3

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Will Wonders Ever Cease?

I've held the belief that the struggle going on in Toronto is not so much about what to do with a boorish mayor as one of ordinary citizens fighting back against smug elites who look down their noses at the great unwashed while robbing them blind at tax time. And here's an article in the Toronto Star (of all places!!) saying more or less the same thing. Those who comprise the Great Unwashed, the voters, are yearning to return their city to the days when it was known as Toronto the Good from what it is now, vis., Toronto the Hood, thanks to the dominance of lefty elites, champagne socialists as they are called.

I feel the same way about the Harper administration. Despite the lefty media's best attempts to smear him and pronounce him dead due to the Senate scandal, I have a gut feeling he, or at least the Conservatives, will be returned to power come election day in 2015. I firmly believe Canadian elections over the last little while have been more about sticking it to the lefty elitist media who deign to tell us not to vote Conservative, and the Parties for which they shill. Mind you, it helps when the Liberals make Baby Trudeau their leader. And that's precisely the point. We want the adults to be in charge.

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Thursday, November 21, 2013

The Real Story Of...

...of Adam:

And Eve.

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What Will They ...

...think of next?!

I guess we'll have to wait until next year to see.

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Oh, oh! The Industry Isn't Gonna Like This

DNA breakthrough: Native Americans had European ancestry BEFORE Columbus
"DNA analysis has sequenced the genome of a Siberian lad who died some 24,000 years ago when the land bridge was still there and the migration into what would become Alaska was in full flow. A full test has also been carried out on another Siberian of 17,000 years back. In both cases, it appears that the Siberians of the time had a much heftier dose of genetic signatures similar to proto-Europeans, and that in all likelihood they took those with them to America."
"So it appears that the Native Americans were in part merely an earlier wave of European colonisation, later to find most of their conquests taken away by Johnny-come-latelies from across the water"

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Monday, November 18, 2013

With Snow On The Ground...

...and bone chilling temperature, I thought I'd treat myself to a little history - AKA war by other means.

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Sunday, November 17, 2013

British Justice Lives On... the former empire, although its wheels do grind rather slowly:

Pakistan to Pursue a Treason Case for Musharraf
"Pakistan’s government said Sunday that it was initiating a treason prosecution of the country’s former ruler, Gen. Pervez Musharraf, in what would be a groundbreaking if politically charged assertion of civilian supremacy over the powerful Pakistani military."
"Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said that the government had asked the Supreme Court to establish a special panel to try General Musharraf on accusations that he subverted the Constitution in late 2007 when he imposed emergency rule and fired much of the judiciary.

The military has ruled Pakistan for about half of the country’s 66-year history, and no ruler or top military commander had ever faced criminal prosecution until General Musharraf’s return from exile in April. Since then, he has faced criminal prosecution in four cases related to his time in power.

But a treason prosecution would sharply raise the stakes between civilian and military leaders — the charge carries a potential death penalty — and, analysts warned on Sunday, could cast the country into new political turmoil."
Another one on the turmoil in Pakistan: Rift Within Pakistan Taliban Grows
"A deadly rift within Pakistan's Taliban network has deepened since a U.S. drone strike killed the group's chief this month, militants and officials said, with the late leader's hard-line wing challenged by commanders interested in pursuing peace negotiations with the government.

In recent weeks, members of these two factions of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan have been killing each other, both in TTP's main stronghold of North Waziristan on the Afghan border, and in the southern metropolis of Karachi, where vast urban neighborhoods are under effective Taliban control.The Shawal valley in Waziristan, in particular, has become a flashpoint."
"The charismatic leadership of Hakimullah Mehsud had kept the organization together, and Mullah Fazlullah doesn't have that," said Syed Hussain Shaheed Soherwordi, an international terrorism specialist at the University of Peshawar. "This is the first time that a certain difference of opinion has been expressed. When the leadership of a terrorist organization is contested by some of its members, that's the moment when there will be some cracks within the organization."
Another indication that the Taliban is falling apart.

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And Another One Bites The Dust

Senior Hezbollah Commander Dies in Syria

Of course, as usual, they try their best at "positive spin".
"A senior Hezbollah commander died on Saturday after he was wounded in Syria several days ago, Al Arabiya reported, citing a pro-Hezbollah website.

“The Islamic resistance in Hezbollah proudly weds a new Knight...Ali Shabeeb (Abu Trab al-Rweis) who died as he was performing his sacred religious duty,” the website was quoted as having said."
And they always sacrifice others, but never themselves.
"Hezbollah chief Nasrallah has promised that his group will be wherever is needed in Syria and has even declared he was willing to go fight in Syria himself."
Bluster and phoney bravado on display here, as usual. I think we're winning folks.

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Saturday, November 16, 2013


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Friday, November 15, 2013

World's Apart

In some places they do this:

Media Silent as Muslims Ethnically Cleanse 60,000 Christians in Philippines

Aside: Never mind what it says about the media, but that is sort of what it's all about.

And then, in Europe, two of the most maligned political figures get lambasted by the media on a regular basis because they see what the media refuses to see:

Dutch Eurosceptic Wilders and France's Le Pen unite
"Both leaders say Europe's political elite has been too tolerant of Islam and both want to curb immigration."

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This Is Really Depressing

It's also a few months old, but I can't pass it up:

To The Horror Of Global Warming Alarmists, Global Cooling Is Here

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I Didn't Know...

...this had happened. Perhaps that's because the lamestream media (including SNN - GRRRRRRRRRR!) has been obsessing non-stop over Rob Ford. This is big news! Maybe. To he!! with the Centre of the Universe. Screw Keystone!! We got oil to sell.


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Syrian rebel 'beheaded in case of mistaken identity'
"An al-Qaeda affiliated rebel group in Syria is reported to have asked for forgiveness after beheading a fellow rebel in a case of mistaken identity.

A video recently posted online showed members of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) brandishing the severed, bearded head of a man.

They said was (sic) an Iraqi Shia caught fighting on the government side.

But other rebel fighters watching the video recognised the man and said he was one of their commanders."
"In a separate development, activists said a senior figure in another Islamist rebel group had been killed in an air strike near Aleppo."
Just another story that makes me believe al Qaeda just hasn't got the stuff it use to have. Bin Laden's bones must be rattling at the bottom of the ocean.

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Thursday, November 14, 2013


The Cracks Are Showing

Elsipogtog seeks shale injunction, warns of 'radical elements
"The Elsipogtog First Nation is seeking a court injunction to suspend all exploration by SWN Resources, and warns “outside radical elements” are converging on the area where the latest work is being done.

The band says in a court application filed Thursday afternoon there’s a real risk of a repeat to clashes between police and protesters near Rexton last month."
"The notice by the band was filed in the Court of Queen's Bench in Fredericton. It names the Attorney General of New Brunswick, the Minister of Energy and Mines, SWN Resources Canada Inc, and the Assembly of First Nations' Chiefs in New Brunswick as respondents.(Emphasis Added) The application is asking — on what it calls "an extremely urgent basis" — to have an order suspending all SWN operations under oil and gas licences."
Poor fools. They don't seem to realized how transparent the hypocrisy is.

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At Long Last!!!

The media is finally touching, ever so carefully, the bankruptcy of the left's propensity toward hurling the word "raaaaacism" around in situations that have nothing to do with race.

What is racism? Confusion reigns
""What river separates China from India?" someone asked at a recent social event in Metro Vancouver. Answer: "The Fraser River."
No one laughed. It's not that kind of a joke. It's more a lesson in demographics. The Fraser River forms a clear boundary between north Surrey - with its concentrated enclave of South Asians - and Richmond, where the enclave is Chinese.

However, perhaps the real reason people did not chuckle was, as someone said, "That sounds racist."

The remark reminded me of the difficulty people have understanding the word "racist."

A lot of people, particularly liberals (Emphasis added), do not seem to know the key Oxford Dictionary definition of racist, which is: "A person who believes that a particular race is superior to another.""

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Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Two Stories About the Atlantic

First, is she a conquering heroine or a nutcase?

She conquered the sea, not her fear
"Solo Rower Mylène Paquette tackled 12-metre waves, loneliness, to cross the North Atlantic, a 5,000-km journey, in 129 days"
"Mylène Paquette reached the shores of France on Tuesday after a 5,000-kilometre voyage from Halifax, a fourmonth odyssey that saw her overcome the volatility of nearly a dozen storms, the power of 12-metre-high swells and the shock of capsizing 10 times. However, she still didn't find a way to conquer her fear of water.

"I'm scared in the pool and in a big bath," the Montrealer told reporters on a conference call shortly after landing in the French port city of Lorient.

"I don't really understand what I'm scared of. Maybe it's because I've been watching too much Jaws when I was younger?""

Second, the government owns shares in this?

Jim Flaherty says he is open to Hibernia sale
"Federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty says Ottawa is open to discussing a potential sale of its stake in the Hibernia offshore oilfield off Newfoundland and Labrador.

However, Flaherty says the federal government has not directly considered the possibility as it looks at other potential asset sales."(Emphasis mine)
The CBC, perhaps?

And why not do both?

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Sunday, November 10, 2013

BWHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! More Stuff You Find On Facebook

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Saturday, November 09, 2013

Alright, Guys...

...Which one are you?

A regular guy or a Calvin Klein Model?

The stuff you find on Facebook. Tsk. Tsk.

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For My Dad, On Remembrance Day

My sister posted this pic on Facebook. I'm not sure when it was taken, but he was a WWII vet. God rest his soul. I'll be thinking of him, especially, this Remembrance Day.

(Now I'm getting teary-eyed. He's been gone for almost 37 years. My son was just a few months old. But life goes on. He doesn't know he has great-grandchildren.)

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Thursday, November 07, 2013

Got Ten Hours?

Interested in ancient history? Wanna see a piano hurled through the air?

Here's a series of ten videos, each a little less than a hour long, showing ancient technology and inventions that will fascinate and inform, from Stonehenge to Egyptian obelisks to the trebuchet. Modern experts assemble teams of men and try to recreate/discover the methods used to construct and erect these monuments using technologies of the era when the originals were built. How did they do it?

Secrets of the lost empires

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Rolling Right Along

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Not Withstanding The Current Media Frenzy...

..about Rob Ford and his adventures with crack, of which which I'm getting mighty sick and tired, this one is pretty funny:

Daily Show, Colbert Report riff on Rob Ford's crack confession

Can we move on now? There is other stuff happening.

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You Go Girl!!

Vaughn Palmer: Aboriginal child welfare system is a gravy train with no destination
"There’s virtually nothing to show for the $66 million spent by the B.C. government in the past 12 years on improving aboriginal child welfare, according to a damning report by child advocate Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond."
"More than half of the children in care are aboriginal, though they account for less than 10 per cent of the population under the age of 18. Native communities, angered that so many of their children were being taken by the state, wanted a greater measure of control and control over those decisions."
"“Landmark agreements between government and aboriginal leaders set the foundation for a new, more positive relationship (and) created a climate of hope,” as child and youth representative Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond noted in a report released Wednesday.

But as Turpel-Lafond goes on to chronicle in her almost 100 detailed and fully researched pages (46 boxes of documents, 76,000 pages reviewed), the result was a decade-long public policy catastrophe.

“Since 2002/03 more than $66 million has been expended on these change initiatives and not a single child directly served.”"
"About half the money went to an attempt — subsequently abandoned — to establish regional authorities to deliver aboriginal child care.

“Nearly $35 million ... paying people to meet, hiring consultants to facilitate those meetings, and producing materials of questionable practical value that almost never addressed the actual difficulties children and youth were experiencing in their lives.”

After that exercise was abandoned, the government substituted a replacement program, Indigenous Approaches, that Turpel-Lafond characterizes as “a hodgepodge of financial arrangements” grounded in a belief that “First Nations partners should do what they want” and be funded accordingly.

“The agenda was ad hoc and that securing resources consisted of making a pitch to senior officials, who then recommended funding for activities. The financial accounting was too poor to permit assessment of objectives and outcomes. These projects existed outside most government financial and policy frameworks.”

Against that backdrop, one has to note her damning comment on where many of the aforementioned millions landed: “To be blunt, a significant amount of money has gone to people who provide no program or service to directly benefit children.”

The representative doesn’t hesitate to name names. Page 51 of the report details some 18 native organizations that received $32 million in contracts over the years 2009-2012.
And that, my dears, is the product of the Indian Industry. And it's not confined to British Columbia.

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Wednesday, November 06, 2013

It's So Hard...

...not to believe in conspiracy theories:

Saskatchewan to call for abolition of Senate
"The motion, which is largely symbolic, comes one week before the Supreme Court of Canada is scheduled to begin hearings on the constitutional implications of reforming the Red Chamber."
More here and here and here.

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Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Did You Know?

The U.S. of A. has declared a new national holiday. I read about it at Free Republic.


Don’t forget to mark your calendars.
As you may already know, it is a sin for a Muslim male to see any woman other than his wife naked and if he does, he must commit suicide.
So next Saturday at 1:00 P.M. Eastern Time, all American women are asked to walk out of their house completely naked to help weed out any neighborhood terrorists. Circling your block for one hour is recommended for this anti-terrorist effort.
All patriotic men are to position themselves in lawn chairs in front of their houses to demonstrate their support for the women and to prove that they are not Muslim terrorist sympathizers.
Since Islam also does not approve of alcohol, a cold 6-pack at your side is further proof of your patriotism. The American government appreciates your efforts to root out terrorists and applauds your participation in this anti-terrorist activity.
God bless America !"

If Canada intends to follow suit, they damn well better wait until summer. It's positively miserable and blustery outside today.   BRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!

Come to think of it, it may be a sin for some of us to be seen naked at any time of the year.  Scaarrry!

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Monday, November 04, 2013

Well Ain't That Interesting

Eons ago, I signed up to receive Angus Reid surveys. I got one today and one of the questions had to do with whether or not I watch or listen to the CBC. Of course, none of these surveys ever state who commissioned the survey, but who wants to know that, and why? It remains my fervent hope that Harper et al, will pull the privatization rabbit out of the hat either as an election campaign promise or as a coming-down-the-home-stretch goodie to ensure themselves another term. One can always hope. I can hear the lefties howling now.

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Sunday, November 03, 2013

So Sue Me

They say music is balm for the soul. I'm not feeling particularly in need of balm, but I'm Canadian and these Canadian artists move my soul. Hopefully they do yours, as well. PS: Some of them I don't even like, but I'll close my eyes and drift off into dreamland. It's cold outside and there may be a blizzard on the way. What better way to lift my spirits as winter arrives?

You know, I saw K.D. Lang before she became very famous. She performed at the Western Development Museum in Saskatoon. That was around 1984 or 1985. And I'd crawl over broken glass to see Leonard Cohen.

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Just Like His Mentor

Pakistani Taliban chief Hakimullah Mehsud killed in drone attack
"With marble floors, lush green lawns and a towering minaret, the $120,000 (Dh440,640) farm where feared Pakistani Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud died in a US drone strike was no grubby mountain cave.

Mehsud spent his days skipping around Pakistan’s rugged tribal areas to avoid the attentions of US drones. But his family, including two wives, had the use of an eight-roomed farmhouse set amid lawns and orchards growing apples, oranges, grapes and pomegranates.

As well as the single-storey house, the compound in Dandey Darpakhel village, five kilometres north of Miranshah, was adorned with a tall minaret — purely for decorative purposes."

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Saturday, November 02, 2013

One In Four...

...I think we're outnumbered:

Not withstanding what they do with all that poop, I think the best beetles are the ones that go CRUNCH when you step on them and the worst one's are water beetles.




Best medical advice I've ever heard!!

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Friday, November 01, 2013

A Blast From The Past

Must Get This...

From the description:
"In Noble Savages, Chagnon describes his seminal fieldwork—during which he lived among the Yanomamö, was threatened by tyrannical headmen, and experienced an uncomfortably close encounter with a jaguar—taking readers inside Yanomamö villages to glimpse the kind of life our distant ancestors may have lived thousands of years ago. And he forcefully indicts his discipline of cultural anthropology, accusing it of having traded its scientific mission for political activism." (Emphasis mine.)

But then I'll have to find time to read it. (I think I might have told you, in one of my undergrad degrees I opted for a double major in Anthropology and History. Neither are particularly useful on their own, but at least History attempts to get at the truth and sheds light on real events. Anthropology? Not so much.)

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How Can You Tell A Lawyer Is Lieing?

His lips are moving:

Rob Ford wasn't smoking crack on video, lawyer says

If he had left it at that, it would have been better. But then he has to go and add this:

"Ford was smoking another substance, such as marijuana or tobacco."

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