Sunday, July 11, 2004
Friday, June 11, 2004
"Are we rushing headlong into the next step of those 40 years of progressions by which we do something then they do something, by which we pretend that we're going to build this and it will somehow strengthen our deterrent then they do it, and low and behold, the next thing we know is, the President of the United States is addressing the nation saying, ‘My fellow Americans, I hate to tell you this, but the Soviet Union is deploying more of these, and we have to respond, and I'm asking the Congress for more money in order to respond.’ Star Wars is guaranteed to do that, and it's guaranteed to threaten the heavens -- the one line we haven't yet crossed with weaponry: the heavens." – Senator John Kerry, on SDI, the program that brought the evil empire to its knees, August 5, 1986.
Saturday, June 05, 2004
My favorite president with whom I shared the air and earth.
...also a fraternity brother of mine, Tau Kappa Epsilon's greatest.
Not at my schools, though...
Sunday, May 23, 2004
Ever notice the strange weather we've been having lately?
Tuesday, May 18, 2004
With Bush getting bashed for high oil prices and talk of using the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, I often wondered how this reserve was created. The Dept of Energy has a great web site that details the SPR. Here a link to how the salt domes were created
Salt caverns are carved out of underground salt domes by a process called "solution mining." Essentially, the process involves drilling a well into a salt formation, then injecting massive amounts of fresh water. The water dissolves the salt. In creating the SPR caverns, the dissolved salt was removed as brine and either reinjected into disposal wells or more commonly, piped several miles offshore into the Gulf of Mexico. By carefully controlling the freshwater injection process, salt caverns of very precise dimensions can be created. For every barrel of crude oil to be stored in the SPR's salt caverns, it took 7 barrels of water to create the storage space.
Besides being the lowest cost way to store oil for long periods of time, the use of deep salt caverns is also one of the most environmentally secure. At depths ranging from 2000 to 4000 feet, the salt walls of the storage caverns are "self-healing." The extreme geologic pressures make the salt walls rock hard, and should any cracks develop in the walls, they would be almost instantly closed.
An added benefit of deep salt cavern storage is the natural temperature difference between the top of the caverns and the bottom – a distance of around 2,000 feet. The temperature differential keeps the crude oil continuously circulating in the caverns, maintaining the oil at a consistent quality.
The fact that oil floats on water is the underlying mechanism used to move oil in and out of the SPR caverns. To withdraw crude oil, fresh water is pumped into the bottom of a cavern. The water displaces the crude oil to the surface. After the oil is removed from the SPR caverns, pipelines send it to various terminals and refineries around the nation.
Tuesday, May 04, 2004
The following plot shows how much I paid for each gallon of gas I bought over the past 25 years or so. The data has a somewhat varied pedigree. Most of the purchases from 1979-1982 were in the Rio Vista/Fort Worth, Texas area. From late 1982-1983 was from College Station/Rio Vista about equally. From 1984-1987 was a Rio Vista/College Station/Houston mix and from 1987 on has been mostly Houston with a little Fort Worth thrown in. Just about everything pre-1984 was full service and everything since has been self-serve. Every tank shown was "super" unleaded (92-93 octane).
Three curves are shown on the plot. The upper, black curve shows the actual price paid for each gallon. The lower curve is the data adjusted for inflation using April, 1979 as the datum. That is, the data in this curve has been adjusted to "April 1979 dollars". The "CPI-All Urban Consumers for all items less energy" was used to adjust the data using monthly average data interoplated to the actual purchase dates. The CPI data is from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The third, faint line, shows the average price for the entire U.S., again from the BLS.
The plot contains data from 959 fill-ups.
Oh sure you're thinking this guy needs a life -- but Im thinking this country needs more people like this! Nerds are necessary..
Sunday, April 25, 2004
Bush Shoot-Out - Miniclip.com
Thursday, April 22, 2004
(Captain's log): Last November, I posted this article where I roundly condemned the magazine Paris Match for having reporters observe attempts by Iraqi insurgents to shoot down an American jet using SAMs. Somehow or other, I have no idea how, one of their reporters just stumbled on that post. He was inspired to write the following email to me:
Read the whole thing...
Saturday, April 17, 2004
Friday, April 16, 2004
Interesting blog from Iraq IRAQ THE MODEL
First a bit about these 3 guys:
-Mohammed: 34 years old dentist/single/graduated from Baghdad university in 1995. Left his job 6 years ago because he refused to serve in Saddam's army, and now back to work in Samawa City in the southwest part of Iraq. Interests: poetry, reading (history, religions, philosophy and politics).
-Ali: 33 years old doctor/single/graduated from Baghdad university in 1995. Left his job for 3 years for the same reason, then did the military service after losing hope, just to go on with his career. Now working in Baghdad as a senior resident and studying to become a pediatrician. Interests: chess, reading (history, parapsychology, politics and novels).
-Omar (I'm the one responsible for the publishing and internet work): 23 years old dentist/single/graduated from Baghdad university in 2002. Saved from the military service only by God and the coalition. Now working in baghdad. Interests: music, sports (martial arts), reading (novels) and now blogging. We were all born in Baghdad and still living here.
This article from Omar is worth a full read:
I've been visiting the BBC Arabic site in the last few days and I found a forum where people from many Arab countries –including Iraq- post their opinions about some hot topics, the main of those is Iraq and terrorism of course. I wasn't surprised to see that most Arabs (especially from Egypt, Palestine, Sudan, Saudi Arabia and Syria) are forming one side of the debates while Iraqis and people from the rest of the gulf countries are taking the other side. But I was surprised when I found that the almost all the Iraqis who took part in the debates are on our side, maybe 95% of Iraqis expressed their rejection to the violent behavior of some Iraqis and condemned the terrorists attacks on both Iraqis and the coalition saying that the Arab world must stop supporting the terrorists and the thugs from inside Iraq. It's also surprising that many of those Iraqis live in areas that are recognized to have a public anti American attitude in general like A'adhamiya, Diyala and Najaf. I feel that those people are still afraid to voice their points of view in public in such hostile atmospheres but the internet is providing them freedom and safety to say whatever they believe in.
Here, I translated three of the posts made by Iraqis
Tuesday, April 13, 2004
"There was a huge cheer from the crowd when Gareth Smith, a veteran peace and social-justice activist, declared: “We have a fascist government and we have to bring it down!” Showing off his Che Guevara t-shirt, Smith argued that we have to fight to replace xenophobia with solidarity, quoting Che: “If you tremble with indignation at every injustice, then you are a comrade of mine.” "
Injustice? Yes, Austrialia's participation in Operation Iraqi Freedom, among other things.
Check out more at Tim Blair's blog
Stolen from Right-Thinking from the Left Coast
That's my bet.
Campaign 2004 turns extreme in Florida with the placement of a newspaper ad calling for physical retribution against Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld!
"We should put this S.O.B. up against a wall and say 'This is one of our bad days,' and pull the trigger," the ad reads.
Its this kind of shit the democrats always get away with. If the tables were turned this would be in the headlines of all the major news outlets in seconds. I bet this goes no where! I hope I am wrong but its doubtful.
Yes I know the scolling text is annoying! Just playing around
Monday, April 12, 2004
"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling that thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself." .... John Stuart Mill.
Saturday, April 10, 2004
"First of all if John Kerry had been President instead of George Bush, I am sure that Osama Bin Laden would have been captured or killed at Tora Bora. We would not be waisting lives and treasure fighting an unnecessary war in Iraq and we would be using those resources to fight Al Quaeda with the support of the world community to boot!"
All this and more at the John Kerry for President Official Web Forum!