Sunday, February 28, 2010

YAY: "There are strains out there [...] that are resistant to virtually every antibiotic we have." -Dr. Louis B. Rice, an infectious-disease specialist

Doctors Struggle to Treat Gram-Negative Bacterial Infections


...Acinetobacter baumannii.

The germ is one of a category of bacteria that by some estimates are already killing tens of thousands of hospital patients each year. While the organisms do not receive as much attention as the one known as MRSA -- for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus -- some infectious-disease specialists say they could emerge as a bigger threat.

That is because there are several drugs, including some approved in the last few years, that can treat MRSA. But for a combination of business reasons and scientific challenges, the pharmaceuticals industry is pursuing very few drugs for Acinetobacter and other organisms of its type, known as Gram-negative bacteria. Meanwhile, the germs are evolving and becoming ever more immune to existing antibiotics.

"In many respects it%u2019s far worse than MRSA," said Dr. Louis B. Rice, an infectious-disease specialist at the Louis Stokes Cleveland V.A. Medical Center and at Case Western Reserve University. "There are strains out there, and they are becoming more and more common, that are resistant to virtually every antibiotic we have."

The bacteria, classified as Gram-negative because of their reaction to the so-called Gram stain test, can cause severe pneumonia and infections of the urinary tract, bloodstream and other parts of the body. Their cell structure makes them more difficult to attack with antibiotics than Gram-positive organisms like MRSA.

Bold above, added by me.

Cool. Big pharma can't make big money by fighting Gram-Negative infections.

So, they don't.

Read more about this at the link above.

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@siskita's vocal group, Marquee Five, mentioned in! COOL!

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Marquee Five in

Here's a nice writeup of Marquee Five and other great events of the week by Jenna Esposito of (a great Cabaret artist in her own right!) regarding our Thursday Feb 25th, 2010 show at Don't Tell Mama :

"A welcome addition to the NYC nightlife scene...terrific performers in their own right...and the blend of their instruments on tight, five-part harmonies is really something special! The five performers each got their chance to shine in various solos and duets, which added color and variety to the already-enjoyable evening. Each vocalist brought their own unique sound and style to the show, yet were able to blend beautifully on the group numbers...I'm looking forward to seeing what's on board for Marquee Five next - it's a welcome breath of fresh air in the cabaret world to have this type of ensemble show, and I'm sure there are more exciting things in store!"

-Jenna Esposito

Check out for more info on upcoming performances!

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INDEED: If you want to achieve greatness stop asking for permission.

via but originally from EddieIcon on Flickr.

OK, so I shouldn't ask for permission to achieve greatness, can I ask for instructions?

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Why aren't Credit Default Swaps Illegal? Because they make the rich too much money...

Another depressingly clear observation from, this time, Stowe Boyd (who is pretty much my favorite blogger these days) includes a huge excerpt from an editorial--I'm only going to include the nuts & bolts of it, though:


Who Will Rein In Those Credit Default Swaps?

DERIVATIVES are responsible for much of the interconnectedness between banks and other institutions that made the financial collapse accelerate in the way that it did, costing taxpayers hundreds of billions in bailouts. Yet credit default swaps have been largely untouched by financial reform efforts.

This is not surprising. Given how much money is generated by the big institutions trading these instruments, these entities are showering money on Washington to protect their profits. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency reported that revenue generated by United States banks in their credit derivatives trading totaled $1.2 billion in the third quarter of 2009.


So the problem is that rich rich rich people are making far too much money betting on the future of things like Greece and AIG for the regulators to step in and stop it, even though these swaps are the things that could cause a massive implosion of the financial system.

...and thanks to our lovely system (just made more lovely by the SCOTUS decision to let corporations have full free speech rights), the laws protecting a banks ability to do credit default swaps can be bought and paid for by the very rich people who make the most money off of said credit default swaps.

So, this isn't really a democracy anymore, is it?

Maybe it's a cashocracy? A Richpersonocracy? NO, I've got it: a *corruptocracy*... yeah... that's perfect.

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ThinkGeek :: Alien 18" Figure

18 inches. $40.


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Friday, February 26, 2010

The Truth From The Republicans Believe We Deserve Our Fate

The true difference between Republicans and Democrats is metaphysics. The GOP believes if you draw a bad hand in the game of life it is because you are bad, so tough luck. Democrats believe if you draw the short stick, it%u2019s just bad luck, and we should step in to make it as good as we can.

And as Paul Krugman points out, what we learned yesterday about the GOP is that they have no plank in their platform to deal with preexisting medical conditions, and the ability of health insurers to drop people that become catastrophically ill. It%u2019s our tough luck if it happens to us.

- Paul Krugman, What We Learned From the Health Care Summit

What really struck me about the meeting, however, was the inability of Republicans to explain how they propose dealing with the issue that, rightly, is at the emotional center of much health care debate: the plight of Americans who suffer from pre-existing medical conditions. In other advanced countries, everyone gets essential care whatever their medical history. But in America, a bout of cancer, an inherited genetic disorder, or even, in some states, having been a victim of domestic violence can make you uninsurable, and thus make adequate health care unaffordable.

One of the great virtues of the Democratic plan is that it would finally put an end to this unacceptable case of American exceptionalism. But what%u2019s the Republican answer? Mr. Alexander was strangely inarticulate on the matter, saying only that %u201CHouse Republicans have some ideas about how my friend in Tullahoma can continue to afford insurance for his wife who has had breast cancer.%u201D He offered no clue about what those ideas might be.

In reality, House Republicans don%u2019t have anything to offer to Americans with troubled medical histories. On the contrary, their big idea %u2014 allowing unrestricted competition across state lines %u2014 would lead to a race to the bottom. The states with the weakest regulations %u2014 for example, those that allow insurance companies to deny coverage to victims of domestic violence %u2014 would set the standards for the nation as a whole. The result would be to afflict the afflicted, to make the lives of Americans with pre-existing conditions even harder.

The GOP and the conservatives in particular just do not care about the poor and the afflicted. They have no moral right to govern us, since their interests are only with the rich, well-born, and the able.

The thing is, though, I don't think it's just the Republicans. I think it's the Democrats, too, that have interests that lie only with the rich. If they really care about the rest of us, they wouldn't be letting the minority party push them around.

To me it seems like the government is entirely out of touch with, not just the needs of the citizens, but reality, itself. Anyone with eyes can tell you unchecked corporate power is a bad thing. Anyone with a brain can understand how letting corporations outsource, play games with money and run amok for profit has done incredible harm to this country. Whether it's the cigarette companies, or the banks, or the military industrial complex, or the health insurance industry, or the energy companies, or the auto industry, lax regulation breeds serious abuse.

But our government keeps pretending that compromises can be made and that things as they were just a year or two ago weren't that bad.

It's clear: the Republicans don't want universal health care, they don't want to protect our environment, they love war and think companies should be allowed to do what they want. I used to think evil didn't exist. But, clearly, I was wrong.

When a political party moves against legislation that would guarantee health care for all, you know there's some serious amoral evilness going on. The fact that the Dems don't actually put up a fight and just wuss around and try to compromise makes them almost as bad.

I'm so tired of blogging about this shit. America, you're in trouble and your government is only making it worse.

What's worse is, I want to leave this country because I just don't see anything turning around any time ever.

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SUCCEED Blog: Calvin and hobbes bento box succeed via

Fantastic on a couple of fronts! :)

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20th Century Boys: a movie about school kid fantasies taking over the country and then plotting to wipe out humanity.


20th Century Boys (Yukihiko Tsutsumi, 2008/2009)

Based on the amazing manga series by the one and only Naoki Urasawa.

Named as one of 4 manga that altered my perception of Japanese culture. I haven%u2019t seen the movie though, and don%u2019t plan to, not for a while yet anyway.

This movie is a blast. There are two sequels, of which, I've seen only one. I'm really looking forward to seeing the third film in the series. I MUST find out who Tomodachi really is!! I think I'll read the manga since I don't want to wait for American distributors to get off their asses and release these movies in the US. Here's the subbed trailer for the first "20th" movie on YT:

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Thanks to the delays the downtown 1 is PACKED. Wishing I'd have waited for the next one.

It's seriously sardine city in here.

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Greetings from Snow York! (ha) We've got maybe 6 or 7 inches but it's still snowing.

It doesn't seem too bad but the plows haven't come around in a while and there plenty of folks on their way to work. I'm on a platform waiting for the 1 train wishing I understood Spanish because some folks here are talking about the weather (I assume). Meanwhile, the 3rd uptown 1 train is passing through as I type this. Of course, I'm heading downtown. Whoops--that 1 train didn't stop and it's windows looked all steamed up. Weird...

I guess there are always slow-downs on days with bad weather so I shouldn't be too surprised. I'm just glad I'm only head down to feed a cat and not on my way to a boss :)

Whoops--there goes the 4th uptown 1 train--this one did stop. Still no sign of the downtown. I've only been standing here for 15 minutes but the platform has so many people on it (and most of us look antsy) I bet it's been close to 30 minutes since the---wait--here's the downtown. Yay!

Sorry I'm late kitty!

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Slushageddon! Snowpocalypse 2! Call it what you wish but NYC is seriously snowy tonight! Yowza!

The first pic in this series is of a street that leads to the A train
190th st station right near my apartment--this view was something we
just saw melt away over the past couple of days and now it's back!
The 2nd and 3rd pics were taken much later in the day on 8th Ave and
45th(ish?) st, late in the evening after the temperature had begun to
drop a bit (the Slushageddon began to freeze!). After being out in
that, I suddenly found myself feeling like this might be kind of a
tough one. No puppet videos this Snowpocalypse 'round. Every corner
has a slushpit to jump over, but every road is covered in three inches
of snow (the plows aren't out yet and very few sidewalks are shoveled
either). It's windy as hell and the snow is thick. Check out my
various streams for a short video of the snow to come later tonight.

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Thursday, February 25, 2010

IN NYC? TONIGHT! Marquee Five in "We Can Make It: the Songs of Kander & Ebb" GO SEE IT!

Watch/hear them sing "A Quiet Thing" at Don't Tell Mama back in December.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

TONIGHT! Marquee Five in "We Can Make It: the Songs of Kander & Ebb"

We're in, Mom!



Thursday, February 25th, 2010 at 8:30pm

Marquee Five returns to Don't Tell Mama with "We Can Make It: The
Songs of Kander & Ebb," an exhilarating evening of your favorites from
Cabaret, Chicago, Flora the Red Menace, The Rink, and more. Tight
harmonies, clever arrangements, and an actor's sensibility
characterize this collaboration of singers Mick Bleyer, Adam West
Hemming, Vanessa Parvin, Sierra Rein, and Julie Reyburn.


"sublime harmony."
--Rob Lester,

"Unbelievable, awesome vocals (and arrangements)...pretty perfect!"
--Stu Hamstra,


Joining Marquee Five on stage will be Dan Feyer at the piano.
Directed by Peter Napolitano
Musical Direction: Adam West Hemming

Thursday, February 25th, 2010
8:30 pm

$17 cover ($12 for MAC/Cabaret Hotline/Actor Unions) 2-drink minimum.


Don't Tell Mama
343 West 46th Street (Restaurant Row, between 8th and 9th Avenues) in
New York City
Near the 42nd and 50th street stops of the A and C trains

Reservations and Information: 212-757-0788
After 4:00 PM daily - Open 7 days a week

More information about Marquee Five: //

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Coming home from feeding a friend's cat in the low 100s and I find rain that is now big wet floppy snow...

The fact that you can see precip in this iPhone pic is proof that the snow is big and floppy...

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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Disappointed in Apple re: their big 10 Billionth iTunes song sale. :( I tried entering, but got errors when I clicked submit...

Shortly before I took the above screencap, I jumped over to 25 tabs
I'd opened in Firefox and began clicking reload on each tab. In each
one I had the "no purchase necessary" form open for Apple's "10
Billionth iTunes song" contest. The winner of which gets a $10,000
Apple card--which, if I won, I would quickly use to buy a MacBook Pro
to replace my quickly dying 3 year-old black MacBook (it overheats
fast if I don't have it on an empty aluminum drive case). The rules
say you can enter up to 25 times per day and there's an expiring
captcha on the form, which is why I started hitting reload on each

Once the 25th tab began loading a fresh captcha, I alt-1'ed back to
the first tab and started filling in my info. I did the same four
more times and then alt-`'ed over to's counter page. That's
when I saw the above numbers. I wasn't going to have time to fill in
all 25 forms so I just started clicking "submit" on the ones I had
filled in, only to discover I was getting an error message. It was
saying something about "you've backed up too far." This made no sense
to me, so I quickly hit reload and got the same message again (I think
Firefox may have asked me if I wanted to resubmit the form data, which
I said "YES" to). But after reloading, it still gave me the same
error message. I had to open a new tab and fill in all my info again.
I did this a few times, but I can't be sure if I made it in before it
was too late.


Apple said I could enter with no purchase up to 25 times, but thanks
to a glitch on their site, I may have not been able to enter at all.

Another funny thing was that between today and last night I noticed
the counter backing up on it's self. It wouldn't literally count
backwards, but when I'd reload it, sometimes I'd see it lose 100,000
or so. Not often--but it definitely happened. Yesterday I watched it
crack 9,995,800,000 twice. Puzzling...

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iTunes is 100,000 songs away from 10 billion and you could win a $10,000 Apple card! If you win, just promise to buy me a MacBook Pro!

You can either buy a track or click that top link on the page there
(here: and if you're the 10 billionth person to do
so, you will win a $10,000 apple gift card. But like I said in the
headline, if you win, just promise me you'll buy me a MacBook Pro for
telling you about this contest, huh? ;D

Hey, it's only fair if you wouldn't have heard about this contest if I
hadn't posted about it! ;P

C'mon! I only need the bottom-of-the-line MBP!

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UFO NEWS: Giant hunk of metal falls from the sky, landing in Mongolia. Of *course* it's a UFO, an Unidentified Fallen Object!

Very little information accompanied a photo of what is claimed is an object that fell from the sky near the Mongolian capital, according to a report filed February 23 with the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) witness database.

AH, well it's good that you reported on it anyway. Since it really doesn't look like it fell from anywhere. You really think something that big falls from the sky and doesn't displace some dirt? Sheesh...

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Really Fun Music Video: Timmy O'Riley by L. Hadron and the Colliders ('s cover of "Teenage Wasteland" by The Who)

Ah, that was fun, wasn't it?

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Sweetheart Candies for the New Great Depression! (My Own Sweetheart-brand Heart Candies)

I meant to post them back on Valentine's Day but I forgot! And no,
these aren't based on my current situation! (Though they are inspired
by it :( ) But hey, how are you supposed to tell your love you love
them when you've got nothing in the bank or your wallet? Well, I made
something with my hands for my wife, but some folks aren't that
creative. These candy hearts are for them!

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Tuesday, February 23, 2010

How Craig Newmark is like Forest Gump and Craigslist is efficient as hell....

Craig Newmark via christmasgorilla

It is so true, he really is Forest Gump.  From the same article I also saw this today, "Craigslist gets more traffic than either eBay or eBay has more than 16,000 employees. Amazon has more than 20,000. Craigslist has 30"

via Mike Hudack  siminoff

Thirty employees. Thirty employees.

Special case, non-reproducible, say what you will.

Craigslist operates with thirty employees.


If I can have just ONE idea that is as successful and efficient as in my life (and see it implemented and successful), I will be a happy person.

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Science vs. Faith: A flow comparison of flow charts (but people can still suck hard)

You might as well replace the words "SCIENCE" and "FAITH" with "OPEN-MIND" and "CLOSED-MIND."

Of course, neither chart addresses the issue of emotions corrupting either process. Both systems can be abused and misused by people for their own ends. And this, in turn, reminds us of how lame the human being can be as a species.

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#ChromeFAIL Question for Chrome Users: Anyone finding that after a while Chrome just stops working? I'm finding this in both OSX and Ubuntu. :(

Every time I think I can trust Chrome it *lets me down!*

Why, Chrome... WHY??


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Hybrid's new minisite: featuring their new single "Break My Soul"--great stuff!

I love techno crossed with traditional instruments...

Oh and if you register on the minisite you can DL both the above track and an instrumental version for free. I'm definitely looking forward to the full album.

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When the West wants everyone to understand themselves from the West's perspective, the West shows of it's lameness...

"Even in its praise of 'extraordinary cultural achievements by other civilisations,' the narcissism of the West seeks only to find in other cultures and civilisations what distinguishes the West from the rest of the world, and continually expects the others to respond to its narcissistic demand for the acknowledgement of its distinction."

Naoki Sakai, Translation & Subjectivity, quoted in "The Calm Beauty of Japan at Almost the Speed of Sound: Sakamoto Kyu and the Translations of Rockabilly," by Michael Bourdaghs


pps I want to read the Sakai book really badly now.

(via baileyeverywhere)

I believe the phrase is "ethno-centric as hell."

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Martian Moon suspected of being alien space station by Eisenhower administration...

That’s no moon, it’s a space station…

Phobos is doomed. It is gradually spiralling towards Mars and eventually could slam into the planet’s surface, leaving a large crater as its parting gift. Believe it or not, this discovery led to the USA’s President Eisenhower being briefed in 1960 that Phobos could be a space station launched by an advanced Martian civilization. via

How do we know it isn't???

We should probably go check, just to be safe!

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UK Photographer films his own 'anti-terror' arrest via

Photographer films his own 'anti-terror' arrest

Man held in police station for eight hours after taking pictures of Christmas celebrations in Accrington

Police questioned an amateur photographer under anti-terrorist legislation and later arrested him, claiming pictures he was taking in a Lancashire town were "suspicious" and constituted "antisocial behaviour". Footage recorded on a video camera by Bob Patefield, a former paramedic, shows how police approached him and a fellow photography enthusiast in Accrington town centre. They were told they were being questioned under the Terrorism Act.

There's a lot more in the article accompanying the video. Hit the Guardian link above to read it all.

See, that's the problem with "anti-terrorism" laws. They put too much power into law enforcement's hands--the power is too easy to abuse. Who determines who might be a terrorist? Any cop, apparently.

It's already a crime to do what terrorists do, why do we need new laws that introduce serious mission creep? Sure the above event took place in the UK, but the same thing happens in the US. There was a guy last year who got arrested for taking pictures of subway trains (if memory serves he was taking pictures for a book he was writing about the history of trains). They could have nailed him for copyright infringement, I suppose, but instead they went the anti-terror route.

How long until we're so scared of getting arrested that we stop taking pictures in public all together? That'll solve things.

How, I do not know... but you know, when you take pictures, Al Qaeda, I guess?

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Something else Lucas ripped off!! Mimas, Saturn’s Death Star Moon (I kid, I kid!) word of the day: demagogue. (Wait, aren't ALL politicians demagogues??)

So, if a demagogue is "A leader who seeks power by appealing to
popular passions and prejudices of the people," doesn't that mean ANY
leader in power today? Even Obama plays off our prejudices of
terrorists. He tells us they're actively plotting to kill us, rather
than pointing out that cancer is an astronomically bigger killer than
terrorists. But hey, declaring a "War on Cancer" wouldn't guarantee
and election win like continuing a war on terrorism, right?

Check out's word of the day page here:

You should subscribe--It's very cool!

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Monday, February 22, 2010

With @siskita and Cousin It at a retrospective of Broadway musicals from 1927.

I hope Cousin It likes music from "Showboat" as much as I do.

Ain't @siskita pretty, tho?


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Finder Freakout: when #OSX goes horribly wrong!

Back in December I was cutting some Jay ThePal video when I had some
issues. They were kind of amusing, so I took a few screencaps and put
them aside to post them. I totally forgot until today. The first one
shows Finder (the Mac equivalent to Windows Explorer) crashing and
refusing to start back up. Note Jay ThePal's shocked expression. ;)
Next, I cmd-tabbed out of FCP to see a Finder window still open. This
made no sense, so I decided to try force-quitting Finder to get it to
restart properly. Only when I opened the force-quite window, *no apps
were in it*. (see img #2) SIGH. From there, I just tried to click
"OK" on the " can't be opened" dialog until it stopped
coming back. It never stopped coming back as the final pic in this
series shows. >_machine!! :P

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Sunday, February 21, 2010

The old Hanna-Barbera building in Los Angeles (3400 Cahuenga Blvd, to be exact!)

I got to talking about the state of animation today and it got me
thinking about my own time in animation. So, I thought I'd post pics
I took of the old Hanna-Barbera building as it looked not too long
after Time-Warner moved all of the animation production done here to
some boring old bank building.  3400 was a great old building and I'm
very happy to learn that it's still standing to this day, though it's
gotten a paint job and had it's interior redone.  See what the
exterior looks like today:  I'd love to see pics of
the interior, though, since I only have my memories of the inside,
maybe I shouldn't see the new look.  I'd hate to forget. I had such a
good time working there.  No place I've ever worked felt so much like
a cartoon studio like Hanna-Barbera.

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Amazing graphic on how useless paying your credit card minimums is from via @shindotv

There's a bit more on the same page as the above graphic, so hit up the link there. Also check out for an interesting read on about how joblessness is starting to effect America (be sure to scroll down for my absurdly long comment!)

Incidentally, if outsourcing is still legal and the banking sector remains as unregulated as it is, what hope of recovery can America have? Or are we all simply going to accept our lower standard of living and just believe the propaganda spewed by our government and our media that the economy is turning around?

Gah! I am SUCH a downer today!! (Even after I played with my cat!)

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Saturday, February 20, 2010

Bob Herbert, Rina Cutler, @StoweBoyd and me on repairing/replacing American infrastructure...

I always like it when I find folks with the same opinion as me. It makes me feel a little less insane and marginalized. Maybe it should just make me feel a little less lonely :P

Anyway, so here comes Stowe Boyd commenting about a Bob Herbert op-ed on about Interstate Highway I-95 repair-needs--I've commented before that I like the direction Herbert is coming from, but like Boyd, I don't think Herbert understands that there isn't time to fix things. And as Boyd says, what's the point of fixing something that is rotten to the core?

But check out what Boyd, Herbert and Philadelphia deputy mayor for transportation and utilities, Rina Cutler, say about American infrastructure, job-creation and the point of it all (first is Stowe Boyd giving the intro to his post):

I truly like Bob Herbert, but I am occasionally baffled by his Rotary Club boosterism for fixing the unsustainable infrastructure of the 20th century.

- Bob Herbert, Falling Further Behind

Fifty-one miles of Interstate 95, the main north-south highway on the East Coast, make their way through southeastern Pennsylvania. Construction of the highway began more than a half-century ago, before Barack Obama was born. Rina Cutler, Philadelphia's deputy mayor for transportation and utilities, noted that long stretches of I-95 are now reaching the end of their useful life and will have to be rebuilt.

In a report titled "Just Because You Ignore It Doesn't Make It Go Away," Ms. Cutler wrote:

"These stretches require reconstruction that is conservatively estimated to cost $6 billion to $10 billion over the next two decades. This badly needed investment could be expected to support tens of thousands of jobs over that period. The Federal Highway Administration has estimated that every $1 billion of investment in the Federal Highway Aid program generates 42,100 full-time equivalent jobs."

Schools, highways, the electric grid, water systems, ports, dams, levees -- the list can seem endless -- have to be maintained, upgraded, rebuilt or replaced if the U.S. is to remain a first-class nation with a first-class economy over the next several decades. And some entirely new infrastructure systems will have to be developed.

But these systems have to be paid for, and right now there are not enough people at the higher echelons of government trying to figure out the best ways to raise the enormous amounts of money that will be required, and the most responsible ways of spending that money. And there are not enough leaders explaining to the public how heavy this lift will be, and why it is so necessary, and what sacrifices will be required to get the job properly done.

In an era of historically high budget deficits, the case has to be made that this is not wasteful spending but essential investments that will yield powerful returns. "If you're not willing to invest," said Governor Rendell, "you have to be willing to accept an inferior product. That's the danger we're facing."

The fact that there are roads and bridges that are crumbling does not mean that we should rebuild them, and by inference, continue the car-obsessed industrialized sprawl that required them.

We should dismantle -- and recycle, in creative ways -- the transportation infrastructure of the past. I-95 would be a great train corridor, so we should start by taking half of it for new high speed rail, and most importantly get interstate transport out of trucks.

I am all for new schools, but let's build them next to new urban light rail, and not next to a decaying highway.

Boyd is absolutely right. We absolutely need to tear the house down to fix the kitchen... and the bathroom and the plumbing and the electrical system....

That's always the excuse I hear when I, or someone else, suggests we need to overhaul everything about our society.

"You don't want to tear the house down just to redecorate the kitchen..." is usually the glib, party-lined response. Of course, this argument only works when you're dealing with one issue. The big picture is much much worse.

Our economic system is frail and prone to abuse. Our legal system is filled with corruption thus guaranteeing we won't see regulation of our economic system. Unemployment is huge and, while our roads getting fixed could create more than 400,000 jobs, we're not doing it--and shouldn't, as Boyd says, because we need trains, not cars.

Roads were for when gas was cheap and we had no idea that pollution would ever be a problem. Trains are more efficient and we are going to be seeing gas prices rise--therefore trains make more sense for the future.

What cracks me up is something Boyd doesn't comment on and that's the money issue. Herbert wonders who will pay for infrastructure to be repaired but no one asked that question when it came to bailing out the banks or the auto industry, did they? Very few asked that question when we invaded two countries. Why is it that cost only becomes an issue when we want to do something that actually makes sense?

Save the environment? SORRY, it would kill our economy.

Universal health care? Sorry, we need to spend money on wars.

We need to rebuild our nation's ability to transport food and goods to everyone? SORRY, we don't want to leave our kids a mountain of debt. (Too late!)

Obama wants to build a nuke plant in Georgia? $8 BILLION COMING RIGHT UP!!

Forget that money isn't representative of *anything* anymore. Forget that over the past few years we've seen $3 trillion or more conveniently conjured to prop up the rich folks (banks, corporations, military/industrial complex, the stock market), we have to keep ignoring the band-aids that shouldn't even be used on the tumors killing our country. I mean, does anyone seriously think the USG and/or the Fed didn't just print up more money to cover all this stuff?


I really hoped that once Obama got into office I'd feel a little less like Slim Pickens at the end of "Doctor Strangelove."


PS, if you're not following Stowe Boyd's blog on Tumblr, I suggest you do. Check it out at

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Friday, February 19, 2010

#kittypics: our younger cat, Zaphod, being unusually calm in front of my iPhone... (+ a shot of sleeping Ecks)

Here are four pics of our younger cat, called "Zaphod". He's a little fuzzball who can get squirmy with very little warning. However a couple weeks back he was quite relaxed, so I snapped these and tweaked them in a photo app I was testing (sorry, can't remember the name). The last pic is our older cat, Ecks, asleep on the couch today. Isn't he cute when he covers his face with his paw? I am such a little girl some times... :)

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#WTF: UK cancer numbers are insane: 1 in 3 got cancer in 2007 according to (ThePete ANGRY!)


One in three people develop cancer during their lives


The four most common cancers – breast, lung, colorectal and prostate – accounted for more than half of the 245,300 new cases of malignant cancer (excluding non-melanoma skin cancer) registered in England in 2007. Of the total number of new cases, 123,100 were in males and 122,200 in females. Breast cancer accounted for 31 per cent of cases among women and prostate cancer for 25 per cent among men.

Keep in mind, those are UK's numbers--the US numbers are likely higher. That said:

...Jesus fucking Christ, can we PLEASE stop worrying about Al Qaeda/the Taleban and start fighting the REAL threat, PLEASE?

Our priorities are so INSANELY out of whack, it's almost unfathomable. Actually, it is completely unfathomable.

Today someone told me that the guy who crashed his plane into a building in Texas because he hated the IRS was crazy.

What's crazy is that the whole of western civilization is dropping *trillions* on fighting wars, propping up failing chunks of its economy and pretending that *nothing ever needs to change,* all while *hundreds of thousands of people* every year *around the world* get cancer and/or die.

It's no wonder aliens don't visit us. We're fucking retards.

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Darth Vader Sweat Jacket from new Adidas line...must... resist... the dark side!! (via

But I gotta admit... I want it...

What do ya want? *It comes with a cape!*

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Skipping anime tonight and watching "20th Century Boys" on my XO (it's not a bad iPod replacement ;P)

I have no idea what this movie is, though. Saw some images online and thought it looked bizarre and fun. Lets hope so!

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Thursday, February 18, 2010

"I tried to talk to God to no avail... I said if you won't save me, please don't waste my time."



Those are the lyrics to the Oasis song "Falling Down." While I'm not a music buff, I do love music deeply and something about these lyrics nailed it for me, both as an atheist and as someone critical of the way things are happening in the west these days. Ironically, the first time I heard this song was as a theme tune for a new anime series out of Japan called "Eden of the East." It's about random individuals being tasked with creating a new Japan out of a stagnating/decaying one. It's really fun and thought provoking. In a sense, it's almost like the lyrics to "Falling Down" present the problem that the "Eden" series attempts to solve. How would you save the west? How would you be our messiah (as the series calls it)? Check out the official "Eden of the East" website (it's in Japanese):

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Bill Gates, more progressive on climate than Obama, calls for climate-neutral energy! (via

Gates at TED proposed that zero carbon emissions is the right goal for the world:

Alex Steffen,  Bill Gates: the Most Important Climate Speech of the Year

Simply, we need climate-neutral energy. We need to use nothing but climate-neutral energy.

To do that, we need an "energy miracle." We need energy solutions that don't yet exist, released through a global push for clean energy innovation. That, in turn, demands that a generation of entrepreneurs push forward new ideas for renewable energy, unleashing "1,000 promising ideas." He described one of his own investments, but went on to note that we need hundreds of other ambitious companies as well, and he plans to put his own efforts into this arena.

Why is this important? The news stories focused largely on the clean energy aspect of the speech, and certainly the world's most successful businessman announcing that clean energy is the next frontier is a big headline. However, I think though that the real breakthrough was not Gates' answer to the problem, but his definition of success: zero.

Bright green advocates understand that we need prosperity without planetary impact. In many of the circles I run in, this is an uncontroversial idea, and, indeed, the conversation has moved on, to discussing how we decouple better lives from ecological footprints (or even go beyond, and build a society that restores the ecosystems on which it depends).

To say, however, that the standard of zero impact is not widely understood and endorsed would be a whopping understatement. Most people rarely see the things they do, buy and use as directly part of the living systems of the planet. Few people who do think of their connection to nature have ever conceived their lives designed to have no impact at all. For most people, a ten percent or twenty percent improvement sounds like a big deal -- in large part because the improvements they're most familiar with involve giving things up. When they do encounter it, the idea of "zero" looms like a giant wall of deprivation in front of them. The idea that zero might not be the end of the good life, but in fact the beginning of a much better way of life, is simply inconceivable to the vast, vast majority of them. When we talk zero, we sound crazy.

But when Bill Gates talks zero, he sounds visionary. Gates, whatever else he did Friday, just made the most important idea on the planet mainstream credible. That's a big, big deal.

Wow. I hoped that once George W. Bush left the White House Bizarro Earth would return to real Earth.

I agree with what Bill Gates says.

Never thought I'd see the day. I've got to had it to Bill. I'm sure he knows how he's going to make money off of this, but that's fine with me. If money can be made from making the world a better place, I'm totally down with that.


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Great piece on from October on finding historically important pics & vids. Anne Frank, Lincoln, and more...

Below is a video of Anne Frank. That's right a *video*. Well, it was a film, but now it's on YouTube. Hit the via link below and see a picture of Lincoln showing up for the Gettysburg Address, a pic of Lincoln's funeral procession as it passes by Teddy Roosevelt's grand-dad's place in Union Square in 1865. Also check out links to other great finds like color photos of Hitler and audio recordings of Teddy Roosevelt. But here's the vid of Anne Frank:

Crazy cool, huh? Technology can truly ROCK sometimes.

Other times it crashes, making you lose all of your work. >_

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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Obama wants to give $8.3 billion for a new nuke plant in Georgia. How about $8.3 billion for solar, wind, hydro? Sheesh...

President Obama, speaking to an enthusiastic audience of union officials in Lanham, Md., on Tuesday, underscored his embrace of nuclear power as a clean energy source, announcing that the Energy Department had approved financial help for the construction of two nuclear reactors in Georgia.

Nuke power is CLEAN? Sure, if you don't SPILL anything!

What the fuck is wrong with our government? Why can't it seriously invest in energy sources THAT AREN'T DANGEROUS AT ALL?? Seriously, this shit is old, man. And don't give me that BS about how nuke power is more efficient. If the same money went into developing solar, wind and hydro technology, you can bet scientists would find a way to improve efficiency.

What angers me the most is the continued short-sightedness of the USG, regardless of which party that is in control. HEY, IDIOTS. THE SUN WILL BURN FOR *EVER*. LET'S USE IT AS A POWER SOURCE! WHATDOYASAY?

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"To make others less happy is a crime. To make ourselves unhappy is where all crime starts." -@ebertchicago via

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I found the entire article in Esquire Magazine on Roger Ebert moving. The slide above is a partial quote. Here is the full passage.

"I believe that if, at the end of it all, according to our abilities, we have done something to make others a little happier, and something to make ourselves a little happier, that is about the best we can do. To make others less happy is a crime. To make ourselves unhappy is where all crime starts. We must try to contribute joy to the world. That is true no matter what our problems, our health, our circumstances. We must try. I didn't always know this, and am happy I lived long enough to find it out." %u2014 Roger Ebert

Beautifully simple. And it rings true, at least to my ears.

From "Roger Ebert: The Essential Man"

Yeah, but Roger could tweet a bit less frequently and focus on making his Tweets a bit more substantive. JUST SAYIN'.

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Tuesday, February 16, 2010

If you have evidence that someone is a terrorist, put them on trial. If not, let them go. What's so hard to get??

The White House is considering endorsing a law that would allow the indefinite detention of some alleged terrorists without trial as part of efforts to break a logjam with Congress over President Barack Obama’s plans to close the Guantanamo Bay prison, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said Monday.

Seriously--if you know they're terrorists, why can't you get them convicted? If you can't get them convicted, then it means that you don't have actual evidence. Therefore, they should be assumed innocent until you can prove them guilty.

This is what logic and OUR MORALS dictate.

I think every politician is beginning to think they are a kind of "Royalty Lite." Sure, we may not have hereditary rule, but politicians being able to decide who spends the rest of their lives in jail, I'm thinking that's a pretty kingly power.

We're not supposed to be about that sort of thing in this country.

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Not a happy fun reblog post: US Military Rape (Congress is finally investigating it!)

About flippin' time. I remember a year or two ago, DemocracyNow doing several hours on the subject. It's disgusting that we call our soldiers "heroes" but can't protect them from and respect them enough to stop rape from their own. Here's something Stowe Boyd reposted on his

via dekrazee1's posterous, BBC News - Women at war: Sexual violence in the US military

Congressional leaders, who have been holding hearings this month on sexual assault in the armed forces, say that more needs to be done to tackle what recent studies indicate is a widespread problem.

Once you have been raped in the military you are most likely to be raped over and over. - Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez

In 2003, in a survey of female veterans conducted by the University of Iowa, funded by the US Department of Defense, 30% of the 500 female veterans interviewed reported an attempted or completed rape.

Equally worryingly, the Department of Defense estimated in its 2009 annual report on sexual assault, that around 90% of rapes in the military are never reported.

Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez, who sits on the Military Personnel Subcommittee, successfully lobbied last year for the development of a Sexual Assault Database to encourage accountability within the Armed Forces.

%u201CThere are plenty of phone calls that come into my office of alleged assault of women by our military men,%u201D she says.

%u201CThey are heartbreaking. Some women don%u2019t want to go public with it, some have gone public with it and they%u2019ve been drilled out of the military.

%u201CI%u2019m told that the statistics are that once you have been raped in the military you are most likely to be raped over and over.%u201D

She says that not enough prosecutions are happening and that while the Pentagon is taking it more seriously, big changes still need to be made.

%u201CWhy is it that when a woman alleges rape, the outcome shows that the man who supposedly did this was demoted or moved to another unit? I want to know why this is happening!%u201D

When I was a kid I was in Jr. ROTC. I can think of quite a few women who were under my command. I worry that some of them went on to serve in the actual military and had to suffer through this. If I had known what the rape statistics were back then I don't think *I* would have been so gung-ho about the military (especially since men get raped in the military, too).

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