Saturday, May 30, 2009

Up, the movie

Took my two kids to see Up this evening. Surprisingly touching, with the old folks backstory. Plenty of thrills and laughs, though maybe not so much for girls as for boys. The roly-poly little Asian kid is sweet. And no liberal indoctrination, as in Monsters Vs Aliens. It's a winner!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Nork Nuance

I can't find a link online, but this afternoon I was listening to All Things Considered on NPR. They gave a disgusting bit of "backstory" on why North Korea is building nukes: it's because the U.S. bombed North Korea in the Korean War. Old habits die hard: during the Cold War the Left had the same excuse for every instance of communist malfeasance: the big bad Americans made them kill and oppress all those people, and breach all those treaties. Nevermind that the North Korean regime is a horror show unlike any other regime on earth. To be non-white, foreign, and angry at America is to be in the right by definition.

"Peer-refused science"

Tim Blair gets into it with a commenter who deploys the term "peer-refused science". It's in the context of the global warming debate, but it strikes me that it is a bulls-eye description of creationist "research".

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Poor Texas...

It's like Groundhog Day over and over, having to fight off this particular creationist from the Texas Board of Education. I hope all this hoopla doesn't stir up the creationists in my area. We were the ones with the disclaimer stickers in the biology textbooks a few years back, you may remember. I blogged about it here.

Friday, May 15, 2009

More astronomy wonders on the way

While the Hubble Space Telescope is getting repaired, the Europeans are launching what's described as the largest telescope ever into space (I wonder if they mean the largest space telescope?) Can't wait for the pix...

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

A delicate way of putting it...

I'm reading an article about cities and their affordability/liveability, and noticed this sentence:

Similarly, the close-in communities of the San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles are home to large contingents of entertainment industry workers, many of them self-employed.

Thanks to a book I read by essayist Mike Sager, I recognize these self-employed entertainment industry workers in the San Fernando Valley as aspiring actors. Very tactful turn of phrase...

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Photos to drive 9/11 Truthers nuts

Via Discarded Lies, this is a photo essay neatly debunking a number of troofer claims. Won't do any good, of course, but it's nice to see someone take the time to refute them.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Wishful thinking

How often we settle for wishing over doing:

For in general mortals have a great power of being astonished at the presence of an effect towards which they have done everything, and at the absence of an effect towards which they have done nothing but desire it. Parents are astonished at the ignorance of their sons, though they have used the most time-honoured and expensive means of securing it; husbands and wives are mutually astonished at the loss of affection which they have taken no pains to keep; and all of us in our turn are apt to be astonished that our neighbours do not admire us. In this way it happens that the truth seems highly improbable. The truth is something different from the habitual lazy combinations begotten by our wishes.
-- George Eliot, Daniel Deronda, 1876

The complete idiot's guide to Pakistan

This handy guide to who's who and what's what in Pakistan is most illluminating. What a snakepit, politically speaking, that country is.

Fratricide in Baghdad

I'm reading Thomas Ricks' The Gamble right now, and so can't help what a feat it is for our military to have drawn down the violence in Iraq as much as they have. But this news of a "stressed-out" American soldier turning his gun on his comrades is a horrifying reminder that this is still a war, and war is still hell.

Leonard Nimoy interview

I used to be a Trekkie when I was in grade school, so this interview with Leonard Nimoy brought back some memories.

Saturday, May 09, 2009