Monday, 30 November 2015

Entertainment stuff from the week 23-29/11/15

Hiya pawns,

Rant of the week: the direct corruption of Science by feminist sexism.

'Here's how to get more women promoted to top jobs in universities'

{Bitchy aside: note that this article was written by Virginia Kilborn, Birgit Loch, and Helana Scheepers, in The Conversation. Women are dominating this Conversation!}

"Women may now outnumber men in the ranks of university students but men still outnumber women in leadership roles"

When your ideology sees people not as workers, or enthusiasts, and doesn't value them for their work or enthusiasm, but instead values them for their sex, there is a name for that ideology. It's called 'sexism'.

When your ideology sees men outnumbering women as a problem ("men still outnumber women in leadership roles") but doesn't see it as a problem when women outnumber men ("Women may now outnumber men in the ranks of university students but...") there is a name for that ideology. It's called 'sexism'.

Specifically, i'd call it 'sex factionalism' as it sets the sexes up as competing factions, instead of mutual parts of one whole species.

- Women outnumber men as university students? Well, that's one in the back of the net, let's keep on playing.

- Men outnumber women as 'leaderrrrrrs'? Well, that's a travesty, and something must be done about it!

Feminist sexism is responsible for inculcating this perception - that inequality favouring men is a problem worth doing something about, but inequality favouring women is no problem at all.

The masculists are just as cretinous, in doing the same with the genders swapped around. In a feminist's mind, Men's Rights Movement = evil toxic masculinity; Women's Rights Movement = wholesome goodness and purity and light. I'm sure you can do the 'vice versa' yourself.

It would be just as moronic to write this sentence, and demand that it be heeded:

"Men may now outnumber women in leadership roles, but women still outnumber men in the ranks of students"

Implication: that one disparity is not a problem, but the other is one that must be corrected. With brute force, if necessary. FORCE those statistics. Bend and stretch. BEND AND STRETCH. FEEL THE BURN. PAIN IS GOOD.

{Note: girls consistently outperform boys at school (up to 18 years) in all areas, and at all ages, both academically, and even socially. Evidence of female superiority, or the oppression of boys? Neither. It depends what sexist narrative you want to superimpose on it!}

Feminism is just one of many ideologies that, due to its superstitious nature (it exists despite evidence, not because of it) causes people to see any cost as an affordable one, for the sake of the ultimate goal.

- Fire people for making a glib remark? Why not.

- Lynch and castrate people for being the subject of an article in Rolling Stone? Yes please.

- Attempt to destroy someone's life for doing a prank video? Absolutely; give it to me baby, give it to me hard and steady.

Feminism is not the solution to sexism (as i have said many times before) it is sexist itself - it is only making the problem worse.

{A century ago, it was easy for 'Northern' suffragists to equivocate between feminism (word not used at the time) and egalitarianism as the rhetoric of feminist sexists was less necessarily fiction-based. Now, however, sexism is so unapparent in the UK, that whiney feminists have to hallucinate sexism into everything - even toilets and air-conditioning!}

As a consequence of this, the application of feminism to 'problems' whether real or not, only makes them bigger, or produces problems out of nothing. Let's follow the enlinked article further and see how they attempt to 'solve' the 'problem' of a disparity in some numbers...

"SAGE [Science in Australia Gender Equity] aims to address the situation for the Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine (STEMM) areas that traditionally have very low participation by women"

Note the abuse of terminology. Low numbers of women is not a "tradition" and neither is low numbers of Queer people - it's not a 'social construct' like that. Feminism is noted for its abuse of language, most frequently for its abuse of the term 'gender' which is a grammatical construct - it has nothing to do with your body or mind! See the videos 'Evolution and language' and 'Qu'ran's Miracle Of The Female Honey Bees' below.

"The SAGE pilot promises to provide sufficient incentive for universities to rethink how to support female academics to increase the number of women in senior positions."

So the whole point of SAGE is not to increase freedom to get into Science, regardless of sex, it is to support "female academics" and to "increase the number of women" in positions of power.

Imagine if this were the White Rights Movement, instead of the Women's Rights Movement, and the sentence said this:

"The SARE pilot promises to provide sufficient incentive for universities to rethink how to support white academics to increase the number of whites in senior positions."

Now, isn't that more obviously horribly bigoted?

It's incredibly race-partizan, and it actively imposes a requirement on universities, to judge people on the grounds of race, instead of competence and enthusiasm for Science.

Time and time again, this is exactly what we see from feminism -- the demand that women be favoured, not on the grounds of merit, but on the grounds of sex.

Science doesn't need women. Science doesn't need men. Science needs scientists - enthusiasts for the application of the scientific method. Whether they're man or woman or amphibian. Or reptile.

Disturbingly, and unsurprisingly, if you continue to read the same article, you'll see that they actually achieved success, at 'correcting' the disparity that they hadn't even proved to be an extant problem in the first place. The factionalist's mind sees a disparity, and is willing to play it any way they want.

But i want to jump to another article, that i found this morning, to demonstrate quite how easy it is to find this crap. It's not just on YouTube, ready to be eviscerated by Thunderf00t - this shit's in the real world, AFK.

'Research reveals success of campaign to increase proportion of women experts in news'

"Research reveals success of campaign to increase proportion of [white] experts in news"

"Professor [Liz] Howell said: "These results are astonishingly good news and show that the campaign to get more women experts used in news programmes has helped to change the industry..."However, women are still not being used enough by flagship shows in this country and it is clear that more work needs to be done"."

Yes, because using women is a good thing, isn't it. <s>

Human beings are not props. They're not pawns in a game of sex/race/religion/nationality chess.

The key to equality, is that people are being treated according to equal rules - that means the same opportunity for everyone. No special groups. No 'safe spaces'. No boys-only or girls-only clubs. No whites-only or blacks-only buses.

Why would you want to specifically see more women on TV, anyway?

An expert's an expert's an expert. I don't care what sex they are. I don't want to know about their chromosomal makeup, or the shapes of their genitals, or even whether their breasts are 'real'.

Why would anyone want to see more women on TV?

The only conceivable explanation is that they've decided that they prefer looking at women, not despite but because of their shapely figures, gracile features, and coquettish mannerisms. {Womynerisms?}

How is this not perceived as sexist? BBC News 24 is not Babestation!

It would be just as sexist, to say that you wanted more men in nursing, because you personally feel more reassured by the tall stature, big warm hands, and deep rumbly voice of a man.

Well, that might be true. But imagine if your personal and subjective preference were determining who got hired and fired! Yah-boo to their qualifications.

Ultimately, sex is generally not a salient detail, for careers. Even 'brain sex' is bullshit. Efforts to eradicate sexism, should involve the elimination of sex from decision-making, not the drawing of it into the spotlight!

Unfortunately, the shit got real a long time ago, and it seems to be getting worse.

'National hiring experiments reveal 2:1 faculty preference for women on STEM tenure track'

Feminism is actively making society more sexist.

In other news:

Mark Thomas is a domestic extremist. Apparently. FSM, why do you tolerate these awful euphemisms? What the hell is an extremist? Someone who enjoys extreme ironing? Someone who was formerly a tremist? Someone who's extremely 'ist'? Mark Thomas is a comedian, satirist, and campaigner for Human Rights, which inevitably leads him into investigative (proper) journalism. That those investigations involve cases regarding the police, and companies, does not warrant snooping. Not even attending demonstrations, carrying trays of cress, and “appearing confident”. If you'd like to appear as confident as Mark, he's arranged some 'domestic extremist' pinnies, LOL. You can see them in the article :-D

It's definitely happened before, but no human being had been watching closely when it happened. An international team of astrophysicists has collectively witnessed the consumption of a star, by a black hole, and the resultant jet of stellar material, streaming out into space. The whole process took several months. But of course, due to the unique way that the cosmos is funded, the whole event took place 300 million years ago, when some of the light from the star left in Earth's direction.

Three weeks ago, i mentioned the Peruvian government's claimed success in protecting 14,170 square kilometres of the country's Amazonian basin. This week, i get to tell you that Brazil's government has announced a 16% rise in deforestation, costing 2,251 square miles between July 2014 and 2015. That's enough to erase Peru's new national park in less than 7 years. Deforestation is a major environmental problem, and a major contributor to CO2eq emissions, as the forest is a huge carbon store.

It's not just the bees that should be worried for. Butterflies have also been found to be negatively affected by neonicotinoids. 15 species have shown declines associated with neonicotinoid use, which collects in the hedgerows bordering farmers' fields. Other studies have shown cause for concern for other insects, for birds, and for other wildlife too. Fundamentally, the whole problem stems from the plants' inability to defend themselves from predation by insects, which is in turn due to the sweeter flavour of defenceless vegetables. The pressure for genetic modification therefore, is to somehow produce plants that can defend themselves, and therefore don't require pesticides to be sprayed on and around them, but that still taste palatable to consumers.

So, as linked above, brain sex is not a thing; but is fingerprint sex a thing? According to the claimant, "amino acid levels in the sweat of females are about twice as high as in males". But this is a statistical disparity - populationary and individual data are rarely directly translateable. Knowing that someone is 5'6" tall, for example, means they are more likely to be a man, but there are lots of women that tallness too. Halámek - the author - claims 99 percent accuracy of correct sex classification with "mimicked fingerprint samples" which sounds superficially convincing, but the use of the word 'mimicked' suggests an unrealistically polarised test scenario might have been used. Selling a brain-sex test depends on a sample of hypermasculine and hyperfeminine men and women, where the disparity is obvious, and unrepresentative of most people. In practice, the fingerprint-sex test might only be able to say "this fingerprint is 56% likely to have come from a woman". And that's not so useful :-D

Here is a 'technology' that will be plagued by the same problem. Can this software really tell you someone's age and sex, by the way they write? I submit that you're likely to learn more by what they write, than the fashion in which they do it!

Do you think you could float a nugget of gold on the froth of a cappucino? Maybe you could with a flake (Goldschläger has gold flakes floating in it) but how about with a nugget, as depicted in the photo, in the article? Like aerogel, this nugget is a foam, mostly consisting of air pockets (49 parts air - 1 parts solid) meaning it looks like a solid nugget, but behaves quite differently. The foam is actually 4/5 gold and 1/5 milk protein, to hold it together. A curious property of gold, is the range of visible colours it can produce, dependent not on valencies in compounds, but on sizes of particle. On the nano-particle scale (10^-9 m) gold particles in colloidal solution can produce colours from red to blue - the whole spectrum - and the same feat has been achieved with this aerogel.

No evidence has ever been discovered for a massive hairy ape that lives all over the world, but an international team of Physicists just found a newly-theorized particle - the type-II Weyl fermion - in tungsten ditelluride crystals. That'll be Science 1-0 Cryptozoology, just for today. The particle exists in many metallic materials, and is responsible for direction-dependent conductivity. When subjected to a magnetic field, the materials containing the particle act as insulators for current applied in some directions and as conductors for current applied in other directions. Quantum Physics being Quantum Physics, i don't see how i can possibly translate the article into an abridged form, here, so you might as well just read the article :-P

Meanwhile, in Egypt, archaeologists are excited by a fence...

------------------------------------------------------ contemporary stuff

'Shelf Life Episode 11 - Green Grow the Salamanders'

'Americapox: The Missing Plague'
Plus, the abundance of minerals, from dairy products, provided an environment of superior immune systems, in which to evolve.

'Top 5 CLOSEST Stars [Astro Top 5s]'

'Human Combustion: Is it really possible?'

'Fighting Firedamp - The Lamp that Saved 1,000 Lives'

'Flux Capacitor | Fully Charged'

'Evolution and language'
This reminds me of Dad³, LOL. Whenever he tells a story, someone in the comments'll ask what the hell he was saying :-D

'Guilty of RAPE until proven innocent: Justice in the UK'

'How Ahmed The Clock Boy Conned America'

'Infrared and Phase Detection Auto Focus'

'Messier 10 and Orbits - Deep Sky Videos'

'ESA image: Sudanese fields'

'Image: On the rim of Schiaparelli crater'

'Testing gravity—inside LISA Pathfinder'

------------------------------------------------------ of the weeks

Word Of The Week: condign -- (adjective) describing a punishment deemed appropriate to a crime or wrongdoing; the root is from latin 'dignus' meaning 'worthy', as in 'dignity'

Quote Of The Week: "Science is the acceptance of what works and the rejection of what does not. That needs more courage than we might think." - Jacob Bronowski

------------------------------------------------------ non-contemporary stuff

'Antibiotics in Beef'

'The Strange Story of the Cow in the Qur'an'

'Qur'an's Miracle of the Female Honey Bees'

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Entertainment stuff from the week 16-22/11/15

Hi microscopists,

'Black Son of a MULTIMILLIONAIRE, STILL the SJW victim!'

Ugg, i loathe posting these things, week after week, but as Jeff Goldblum didn't say:

"When you gotta know, you gotta know"

Now, let's skip onto something more fun - microscopes and sperm...

'Laser Microscopes | Shedload of Science'

"Shedload of Science is a curated playlist of the best science videos around YouTube, this time on the theme of laser microscopes"

Gotta watch 'em all! that a dated reference? :-P

The series touches very briefly on sperm, then wipes its metaphorical hand#, and continues. That's a shame, because there's something very humbling about seeing spermatozoa under a microscope. Especially if they're your own.

{# That will not be the last 'seedy' joke, in this week's talkie bit :-P }

No other bodily cells are so easily available, and yet can also be seen swimming before your eyes.

If you don't have the good fortune to produce your own supply, then maybe request someone you know to give you a hand... sorry, that's the wrong idiom, isn't it? show you theirs... it doesn't get better does, it? :-P

Or you could look a video up, on the internet! But basically, try not to get put on a register, for the sake of scientil wonder!

'Size matters when it comes to sperm dominance'

The odd thing about sperm, is that they have evolved so weirdly, under sexual selection pressure. Smaller animals tend to have bigger sperms, and bigger animals tend to have smaller ones... but a lot more of them.

The record for longest known sperm goes to a tiny little fruit fly (they're all tiny) with a single sperm 20 times the length of its own body, and 1000 times the length of a human sperm.

In comparison, a fresh* dose of mouse ejaculate contains ~9.5 million sperm, each ~124 micrometres long; a fresh dose of human semen contains ~200 million sperm, each ~50 micrometers long; and a fresh dose of elepant semen contains ~200 billion sperm, each ~56 micrometres long.

The tightly-coiled sperm of the fruit fly Drosophila bifurca is an incredible 5.8 centimetres (2.3 inches) long.

{ *'Fresh' in this case means the testes have been allowed to 'refill' - 'second comings' in the Biblical sense, will have fewer sperm, because it takes time to rejuvenate the sperm population}

'The biggest sperm come in the smallest packages—and other surprising facts about male sex cells'

The causes that favour number over size, in bigger animals, are not entirely known, but a good working hypothesis, is that in small animals, the sperm can just be placed into the lady's 'reception pouch' and left, where it unravels to become generally unremoveable. But this can't be achieved in the relatively gigantic plumbing of a vertebrate.

Consequently, evolution favours more of a 'splash and dash' technique, where large numbers of sperm are dispatched, and a small number might actually win the world's most difficult steeplechase, to the awaiting ovum.

If it's even there, LOL.

It's the nature of the steeplechase's course, that motivates such a wide variety of spermy forms. In fact, spermatozoic morphology is often deemed the most diverse of any animal cell type.

Another nature that influences spermatic development, is the behaviour of the sexes its genome produces.

More promiscuous females mean more competitive sperm, as they vie for fertility, with each other.

Economics - the limited abundance of resources - means secondary sexual traits can influence sperm form and number. Males featuring big horns, or big bodies, or deep voices, tend to produce fewer sperm, as they lack the biological resources to do so.

In humans, it's been observed (i wonder how reliably) that psychology can play a part in the evolution of male gametes, as conceptions of competition (seeing other males) causes them to pump more sperm into their semen, maybe in anticipation of spermatoid warfare inside the female.

Some species can even deselect sperm from the whole process, by shunning them at the gates.

Females of these species can physically or chemically reject sperm from males, with whom they have a biological disagreement. Maybe their immune systems are too similar, for example.

Humans can not do this.

So don't get bogged down in human spunk. There's a wide world of wriggly wonders, out there!


The 21st of November was the 40th anniversary of the release of Queen's 4th album - A Night At The Opera - the most expensive album ever recorded, at the time of release. It culminates (except for the instrumental outro) in Bohemian Rhapsody - one of the most famous and loved songs, in the history of music.

In other news:

Hurrah! If believed silliness can be respected, then so can unbelieved silliness. Maybe this kind of thing will encourage governments to drop their fear-based deference to religion - it's just as valid as Pastafarianism.

Every year, the Oxford Dictionaries pick a 'word of the year' to highlight as an interesting, and influential new addition to the lexicon of the English language. Past winners include "vape", "selfie" and "omnishambles". But the winner for 2015, is barely a word at all - it's an emoji. Specifically, the crying-with-joy emoji. Now, there's no good reason why emojis should not be allowed in dictionaries - the entire Chinese and Japanese ones consist of single-character words! And the whole point of any word, is that it represents a meaning, whether through its audio version or not. The genuine contention, is whether emojis should be regarded as words, or as punctuation. Ending a sentence with a smiley face indicates your emotional state, but then, so does an exclamation mark or three!!! Anything with semantic value counts as language, but should emojis really be competing for 'Punctuation Mark Of The Year' rather than 'Word Of The Year'? Discuss.

The International Council for Clean Transportation (ICCT) presented themselves with the unenviable task of judging which member of ISIS is the least evil, this year. Or at least, they might as well have done, as they were actually judging which is the 'greenest' airline. Worst of the offenders were British Airways, Lufthansa and Scandinavian airline SAS, and at the top of the deeply-submerged pile was Norwegian Air Shuttle, which burned 51% less fuel per passenger kilometre than BA, during the study period. Air Berlin and Ireland's Aer Lingus came in second and third. Noting the fuel efficiency disparities between the carriers, ICCT said the average fuel burn of the aircraft was a key factor in the results and that seat configuration used was also significant. Consequently, first class and business class seats accounted for around a third of carbon emissions but only 14 percent of overall seats - they occupy more space, but on the same flights. "Airlines that invest in new, advanced aircraft are more fuel-efficient than airlines that use older, less efficient aircraft" stated the ICCT. So the solution to 'greening' the airlines is to pump billions of public money into a fixed assets upgrade? I think people would rather vote for nationalisation than see that kind of news, again.

An ancient fossilised forest has been discovered and uncovered, in Svalbard - a Norwegian archipelago in the Arctic Ocean - and been dated to approximately 380 million years dead. The forests grew near the equator during this time - the late Devonian period - and tectonics caused them to drift so far north. The change in flora is thought to be the game-changer that pulled huge amounts of CO2 out of the atmosphere, changing the climate dramatically. The 4m tall lycopod trees have been turned into coal seams in many other areas of the world, which, if all returned to the atmosphere, would increase atmospheric CO2 toward the 15-times-higher-than-today concentrations that were around then. Tectonic Europe was an archipelago itself, back then, by the way - a billion people would drown, if the change were instantaneous.

------------------------------------------------------ contemporary stuff

'Deadly Strychnine - Periodic Table of Videos'

'ScienceCasts: Space Vision'

'Top 5 MONSTER Galaxies [Astro Top 5s]'

'Sliding Door Moire'

'How Do Dragonflies See The World? - Animal Super Senses - BBC'

'Why Isn't It Faster To Fly West?'

'Unexpected Shapes - Numberphile'

Definitely watch the other parts as well.

'NASA rocket could allow you to live for 1000 years!'

'NASA images: A day on Pluto, a day on Charon'

'Image: Stunning shot of Dione and Enceladus'

'Image: Extremadura, in western Spain captured by Sentinel-2A'

'Image: Fingerprints of water on the sand'

'NASA's STEREO-A resumes normal operations'

'The Good of the One - Spock tribute - by Melodysheep'

'"MANLY ADVICE" (Tips For Men) Tales Of Mere Existence'

'The Chaser's Media Circus - Season 2 Episode 10'

'The Chaser's Media Circus - Series 2 Episode 11'

------------------------------------------------------ of the weeks

Word Of The Week: seax (pronounced say-acks) -- also spellt sax, sæx, or sex; a knife or short sword, used by the peoples of northern Europe from 400-1000 CE, in domestic use and in war, where it would be more easily wielded around the shield walls, that were tactically popular at the time; the seax features on the coats of arms of Essex and Middlesex (defunct); the word sax/saks/sakset continues to be used in Norse languages, to refer to scissors, as a result of its material-cutting application; and the word zax refers to a roofing material, used to split slates and adapted to punch nail holes too.

Etymology Of The Week: seminal -- meaning 'crucial in the development of later works'; originated in Old French, in the 14th century CE, and comes from latin 'seminalis' with 'semen' literally meaning 'the seeds of plants and animals'; the figurative (and modern) meaning of 'seminal' dates to the 1630s CE.

Fact Of The Week: The Rhode Island School of Design's mascot is called 'Scrotie' and takes the form of a cock and balls. It's their hockey team that is called the 'Nads' and who are spurred on with the chant "go Nads!"

------------------------------------------------------ non-contemporary stuff

'Queen - White Queen (A Night At The Odeon - Hammersmith 1975)'

'Planeta Tierra #8' (Planet Earth #8)

'A River Changing Course'

'Dog In Space'

Monday, 16 November 2015

Entertainment stuff from the week 9-15/11/15

Hello readers,

'#ConcernedStudent1950 and Feminists vs the media - DISGRACEFUL!'

'Paris shootings: worst fears realized'

Never mind the hyperbolic title, i think it's clear that religious superstition poses a graver threat to human beings than feminist conspiracy theorising has ever done.

I'm slightly surprised that the shootings didn't take place on Armistice Day itself, given the symbolic significance of the date.

But it doesn't matter whether the mass murder was engineered by rogue ideologues, or Islamic State affiliates, or dictated from IS command, by a kind of Levantine Dr. Strangelove. In all cases, the motive was the same.

Emotions get actions done, but ideas determine which actions get done. And in this case, it's been specifically Islamic ideas that got these 130 killings done.

I'm no going to go into macabre echo-motivating details, but off the back of this event, i'd like to make two general points:

One, concerns Armistice (Remembrance) Day, and the other the go-to defence of false-dichotomist religious apologists.

1) For about a century, and to this present day, Remembrance Day has been purported as a day to remember 'the fallen' and the sacrifices they made for us. Mortal sacrifices made by the 'brave few' military men.

But instead of being a day of sore humanity, it is dominated by (sometimes silent) pomp and circumstance, and lorded over by nationalist militants.

The idea that 19 million people died to make a sacrifice to the survivors, and descendant generations, is bollocks.

WWI was not like WWII, with the Allies fighting a reactionary war, against a Christian Nationalism-motivated German government, that could not be stopped any other way. WWI was a pointless war, fought over mutual nationalistic pride stupidity. No-one had to fight in it. No-one had to die because of it. They died for nothing. NOTHING.

This is exactly what makes WWI such a war worth remembering, and the domination of Remembrance Day by nationalist militants so disturbing.

Instead of the remaining military personnel standing alongside all of the other survivors, thereby demonstrating their humanity, they are separated and treated as different. They are treated as somehow more worthy of this thing called 'honour', and emotionally distanced from the rest of society - as tools of war. They walk on their own, in military uniformity, gongs clinking in the breeze - their sour "thank you" for turning up to the fight.

But most of them were not stoic and dispassionate, when they signed up, when they fought, and especially when they returned home. And if you've ever discussed their experiences with them, they won't have given you the impression that it was all good fun and games, giving the Hun a fine bashing.

Because it wasn't.

They were, after all, often just boys, who thought they were going to be home by Christmas. They experienced terrifying conditions, and saw comrades and close friends just disappear in clouds of smoke and mud, as shells fell onto them, on the battlefield.

This was true for all sides. No belligerent nation's soldiers were spared.

On Remembrance Day, however, there are many people who want you to be sad, but they also want you to respect the imaginary dividing line between you, a member of the public, and them, the war hero, who's more a man than you'll ever be. They want you to subscribe to an irrational and indiscriminate prejudice that those who 'fight for their country' are always doing it worthily.

This is a lie.

There was nothing worthy about WWI, and nothing worthy could come of contributing to it. This is a point that is lost, so often, to the flag-waving, drum-beating and bugle-playing, of nationalist patriots. The same
flag-waving, drum-beating and bugle-playing that convinced them to go, in the first place.
"Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons" - Bertrand Russell

The men, and the women and children who died, whether alongside them or far away, died from a futile war that could not have been more trivial. It was completely pointless.

Although the red poppy, that we see so often, and are pressurised into wearing, every year, is intended as commemorative of the deaths on Europe's battlefields (not the civilian ones), it is often intended as a tribute to military personnel, for military action, and certainly not for peaceable campaigning.

Proponents of the white poppy... yes, there is such a thing! ...which is intended as a symbol of pacifism, and introduced just a few years after the red poppy, in 1926, have been derided and slandered by nationalists, who seek to retain control of the Remembrance Day rituals.

The white poppies of the Peace Pledge Union are hard to find, in the redwash, but i assure you that there are people out there who would be willing to wear one, if only they were available to them, and if only the true utility of, and rationale for Remembrance Day were allowed to reach them.

The nationalists want you to be sad, because they want you to be scared, so that they can convince you that their nationalism is the one true road to salvation. It isn't - it's the road to repeating the whole sorry spectacle, again and again and again.

I would want you to be sad, to start you thinking about how wars begin, and which movements in the varied culture of humanity are rendering it more likely, and which are rendering it less likely.

"If in some smothering dreams you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin;
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,–
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori."

- Wilfred Owen

{'Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori' is a line from the Roman lyrical poet Horace's Odes (III.2.13). The line can be roughly translated into English as 'It is sweet and fitting to die for your country'}

Ultimately, if you don't see the importance behind the white poppy, then Remembrance Day has failed, and is not worth the effort people go to, to organise it!

2) On the go-to defence of false-dichotomist religious apoligists.

There is no such thing as 'moderates'. But then, there's no such thing as 'fundamentalists' either.

One of the most favoured tactics of religionists, in my awareness, is the fallacious use of the "I'm not one of them, so i'm alright Jack" gambit.

Religionists say "oh, but they're not a Xtian, so it's nothing to do with me", feminists say "yeah well, TERFs and SJWs are just crazy", and geocentrist charlatans say "the fake astrologers are giving the real ones a bad reputation".

In each of these cases, the 'believer' is trying to impose another of those imaginary dotted lines, to pseudo-justify their own prejudices, by shirking the moral responsibility of reconciling their own with the 'others'.

Because all of these ideologies are superstitious - they exist without, or despite evidence - then any incarnation of them is just as valid as any other. By which i mean that none of them are valid.

In reality, the presence of any superstition, or any science, is continuous and classical (non-quantised) by number of ideas believed, and the amount of confidence that is had in them; but when these superstitionists realise that a fellow superstitionist has become unpopular for something resulting from their superstitious beliefs, they have few choices. If you were one of them, these are the choices you'd have:

1: You can defend your co-superstitionist, and defend their beliefs and acts. -- This is risky, as it can result in their reputation being tarnished too. On the other hand, the greater the number of believers a superstition has, the more veracity it is perceived to have (technically known as the 'ad populem' fallacy) and so defending co-believers can retain most power (freedom) to act superstitious-belief-wise.

2: You can defend your co-superstitionist, but attack their beliefs and acts. -- This option bears the same hazard as option 1 - loss of own reputation - but is more likely to generate sympathy, as it causes people to associate your position with a moral condition. The technical term for this is 'poisoning the well' when it's a negative association. An additional hazard, is that it can cause a schizm, with their cohorts forming a separate faction to your own.

3: You can attack your co-superstitionist, but defend their beliefs and acts. -- This one seems most deranged, but is actually very common. Its technical term is the 'ad hominem' fallacy. Essentially, you're saying that the horrible things that happened weren't a result of any superstitious belief - they're a result of that person being inately evil - they're a sinner, a skeptic, a criminal, a psychopath, etc.

4: You can attack your co-superstitionist, and attack their beliefs and acts. -- This is a full disownment, and is the option that has been chosen when people start throwing the words 'moderate' and 'fundamentalist' around. They're erecting a psychological barrier, to deny any similarity between the co-superstitionist and themself, and thereby seem to have the moral high ground, while condemning someone rightly.

Often, when this happens, people go too far. They try too hard, to make themselves look as innocent as pie, and end up committing crimes themselves - specific acts that only draw attention to how wrong they were, to distance themselves from the original miscreants!

Unsurprisingly, Rationalists are exactly the kinds of people to jump on this, and will readily do so, due to the outrageous nature of it. For example, when thunderf00t effectively destroyed PZ Myers' influence in the Skeptic/Rationalist movement, a few years ago.

The go-to term is 'intellectual somersaults' as believers have found themselves in a situation where they have to struggle and squirm, to convince themselves both that their co-superstitionists are wrong, and that they themselves are right, without using an argument that eviscerates both positions.

'Hypocritical Christian Critics of Islam'

It's very common for Islamists in Europe to label themselves as 'moderates' and all their friends as 'moderates' and all the interviewees are 'moderates', and.... well, it's almost as if the Islamists who do horrible things appear out of nothing, isn't it!

{Aside: if they genuinely were appearing out of nothing, surely that would make them deities who, by religious definition, are always right}

If being a 'moderate' religionist makes you a nice religionist - a 'good' religionist - then where the hell are the fundamentalists coming from?! It's almost as if everyone's calling themselves a 'moderate' to make themselves seem pleasant, while condemning arbitrarily and equally valid superstitious positions as 'fundamentalist' just to deceive themselves and other people into thinking that the lies themselves aren't the problem!

I like Faisal Saeed Al Mutar's metaphor for belief - the one of a coffee shop. But i disagree that the discontinuous notions of 'moderates' and 'fundamentalists' really applies to anyone who goes in it.

The stereotype of a 'moderate' is someone who goes into the coffee shop, and has a coffee and a cake, and that's it. They're done. A few prayers, a few bows and scrapes, and they're not bothered about much more than that.

And the stereotype of a 'fundamentalist' is someone who goes into the coffee shop, and demands one or more of everything they've got - they really get stuck in. They pray, they preach, they flagellate, they're really committed.

But what if the coffee and the cake that the 'moderate' picked happens to involve mutilating a girl's or boy's genitals? What if it involves executing people for doing particular cartoons?

You have no say over the arbitrary preferences for perishables, of other people.

You can argue with someone over their peculiar superstitious beliefs, but you can't ward them away from any superstition-caused crime, without accepting that all superstitions are problematic.

An infinity flirting near the Pierian Spring is less than useless, if you can't be persuaded to drink wholeheartedly.

No-one has to apologise for the actions of others. But common problems produce common results, so everyone should expect to have to reconcile their beliefs. If not to other people, then at least to themselves. This simply isn't possible with superstitions.

As i said, this time last year, after the attacks on Charlie Hebo, the key is consistency. Either you say "if your opinion is unsubstantiated by evidence, we mustn't respect it" or you commit cultural suicide. It's that simple.

Muslims don't have a leg to stand on, in a world where they want Islam-branded bigotry respected, if the house rules are 'No Religion Gets Respected'. We're not oppressing you - it's the same for everyone - leave your umbrella at the door, wipe your feet, and sneeze into a tissue. If yo don't have evidence, you don't get your way, whether your Islamist or Christianist or Scientologist or Raelianist or an atheist Wiccan or Pagan.

The statute should say it clearly: No Bullshit.


The 12th of November was the 1st anniversary of Philae's landing on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. This time next year is expected to be the time Rosetta is safely landed onto the comet, when its work has been done, instead of losing control as the comet becomes more distant from the Sun and power is lost.

In other news:

When the wind blows, the earth rises. Could it be that the Earth is breathing... backwards?? A video entitled 'breathing earth' has gone viral in the last two weeks, as its title suggests a comic narrative - the Earth breathing in and out. But when have you ever seen someone's chest rise, when breathing out? What's really happening, is the wind is blowing the two trees in the mid-ground, and their root system is lifting the forest floor, in the near-ground. This is how trees can be felled, even if they're not sick.

What lengths would you go to, to preserve a rock? And would you reappraise your decision, if i told you that this particular rock looks a little like a woman's head and neck, and that erosion will cause the head to fall off, in your lifetime? Taiwan's ancient 'Queen's Head' rock formation is the real rock in question, and is deemed responsible for a large part of tourist income in Yehliu, where it is situated."I would be heartbroken if it breaks off, we cannot do without it." says local 73-year-old Liu Pi-lan. It's just a rock, but if the only cost is a big glass box, then maybe it's worth it. Discuss [3 marks] :-D

What colour is the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko? We know that it's very dark (all of the pictures are massively brightened, to make features visible) but black isn't a colour - it's an absence of it. So if we were to turn the colours up, on 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (and yes, i am writing its name out by hand, every time) what colours would we see? Akin to other primitive bodies and cometary nuclei in the outer solar system, 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko has a faint red hue, in this case identified by Rosetta's OSIRIS experiment. Only three regions - Hapi, Hathor, and parts of Seth - are reduced in red light, which suggests an abundance of frozen water, in these locations.

Why do all of this week's newses begin with questions? And what's that, in the vomit? Fossilized anything is fascinating, and fossilized vomit especially so. Traces of disease in fossilized bones are wonderful, and coprolites (fossilized dung) are great to put in people's hands and say "guess what this is" but vomit is very rarely fossilized. This 220 million-year-old case, reveals the (former) contents of the stomach of a predator, exhibiting more detail than a coprolite would, because it's undergone less digestion. Technically, it's more akin to an owl's pellet than a drunkard's tactical chunder, but it definitely contains the fragile bones of a small reptile or lizard, maybe a protosaur. What's least known, is the species that ate it, in the first place!

In July, 'Shark Week' returned - a pseudoscientific lie-fest on the Discovery Channel - and this week, the similarly-erroneously-named History Channel broadcasted 'Breaking History: Bigfoot Captured' which did away with the idea that the History channel had anything to do with real events, historic or present, for good. Two hours of deception! Quote-mined interviews, C-list actors, and hammy staging, all to slander scientists, and present the mythical Bigfoot as a real thing. As Jim vorel found, writing in Paste Magazine, people genuinely believed it! But of course, it's all OK, because "that's entertainment".

VW catch-up: Brazil's equivalent of the EPA has fined them $13 million for their emissions 'scheme' and that that is the maximum amount they are allowed to. The vehicles are 17,000 'Amarok' branded trucks, from 2011 and 2012. The Head of the California Air Resources Board has revealed that the industrial cover-up of VW's deception started way back in 2011, when industrial commissioners lied to the European Commission, causing them not to act on the case. It turns out that Greenpeace doesn't get all the credit for causing the EPA to conduct better tests, then, as The International Council on Clean Transportation has been pleading with organisations in the USA, years ago. Whichever claimants are due the credit for whisteblowing, however, it's clear that VW Group persisted with the deceptive scheme, despite opposition.

Germany's Federal Motor Transport Authority has said that it is testing 23 brands for emissions, following the revelations of VW Group's activities. Those brands include: Volkswagen, BMW, Mercedes, Porsche, Ford, Chevrolet, Fiat, Jeep, Honda, Toyota, Land Rover, Renault and Volvo. It has also announced that 540,000 vehicles will need hardware changes, as well as removal of the software.

The Deputy Attorney General of the Pakistani government, has declared speciocide of the houbara bustard to be "a tool for preservation so it should be allowed". The bloodsport is legal in Saudi Arabia, from where animal abusers like to travel to Pakistan's southwestern Baluchistan province, to kill the wildlife. A provincial High Court in Baluchistan in November last year cancelled all permits for hunting in the province, but the federal government headed by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif — a close ally of Saudi Arabia — has continued to issue licenses. We wouldn't have that kind of barbarism in the UK now, would we. <s>

Hurrah! The Finnish government have become the first to keep the hot potato of nuclear waste, instead of continuing the seemingly-permanent game of 'let's all dodge responsibility for an already-extant hazard together'. The frustrating physics of the scenario, is that the fissile/fertile stuff comes out of the ground in the first place, and decays there on its own if we don't. The obvious solution is to put it back in the ground. The only problems come from putting it back in high concentrations. I know there are huge overheads for building mines and tunnels, but if more places accepted nuclear waste, then it would be spread thinner, and the hazard of leakage would be lessened toward the ambient hazard of background radiation. That, however, would require a dampening of nucleo-phobia in more than one community around the world - a much bigger problem than the money.

------------------------------------------------------ contemporary stuff

'Quicksilver - Mercury REALLY cool in slow motion!'

'A red phosphorus sun'

'How To Go To Space (with XKCD!)'

'Top 5 BIGGEST Constellations [Astro Top 5s]'

'Meet London's Last Gas Lamp Lighters'

'AIDS Denialism...... Yep That's a Thing (Australian Skeptics National Convention 2015)'

'Qingdao and its surroundings viewed from orbit'

'Layers and fractures in Ophir Chasma, Mars'

'Understanding the atmosphere of Venus'

'Cassini finds monstrous ice cloud in Titan's south polar region'

'Fermi satellite detects first gamma-ray pulsar in another galaxy'

'Why is Murder Wrong?'

'Halestorm - "I Am The Fire" [Official Video]'

------------------------------------------------------ of the weeks

Word Of The Week: consigiliere -- an advisor or counselor; from Italian meaning the same, used to refer to members of city councils in modern Italy and Switzerland, and popularised by The Godfather where, in the books, it's corrupted to 'consigliori'. The word comes from latin 'consiliarius' meaning 'advisor', and so shares its etymology with the English word 'council' of the same meaning as the latin 'concilium'

Quote Of The Week: “It is often argued that religion is valuable because it makes men good, but even if this were true it would not be a proof that religion is true. That would be an extension of pragmatism beyond endurance. Santa Claus makes children good in precisely the same way, and yet no one would argue seriously that the fact proves his existence. The defense of religion is full of such logical imbecilities. The theologians, taking one with another, are adept logicians, but every now and then they have to resort to sophistries so obvious that their whole case takes on an air of the ridiculous. Even the most logical religion starts out with patently false assumptions. It is often argued in support of this or that one that men are so devoted to it that they are willing to die for it. That, of course, is as silly as the Santa Claus proof. Other men are just as devoted to manifestly false religions, and just as willing to die for them. Every theologian spends a large part of his time and energy trying to prove that religionsfor which multitudes of honest men have fought and died are false, wicked, and against God.” - H.L. Mencken, Minority Report

------------------------------------------------------ non-contemporary stuff

'Ark Survival Evolved Mods - TITAN DILO! Alpha Carno, Dodo, Raptor! - Dino Overhaul Mod 1080pHD'

'The Darkness Live in NYC - One Way Ticket @ Irving Plaza'

'The Darkness Live in Asbury Park - Roaring Waters @ Stone Pony'

'The Darkness Live in NYC - Friday Night @ Irving Plaza'

'The Darkness Live in Philadelphia - Open Fire @ TLA'

'The Darkness Live in Asbury Park - Growing on Me @ Stone Pony'

'The Darkness Live in Silver Spring - I Believe in a Thing Called Love @ Fillmore'

'The Darkness Live in Huntington - English Country Garden @ Paramount'

'The Darkness Live in Silver Spring - Love is Only a Feeling @ Fillmore'

Monday, 9 November 2015

Entertainment stuff from the week 2-8/11/15

Quaile, thee heretickes, before thy almighty God!

Now is a time of gunpowder, treason and plot - a time of petulance and protestantism; a time of rakishness and rebellion; a time of moral abandon.

In the year of our lord 1605, we beseech thee - turn from thy wickedness, and come home to the old faith - of stolidity and stability.

And to prove how morally superior we are, we're going to blow the government up and replace the Protestant James I with a Catholic tyrant, hopefully more like Mary I, who seized the throne, and had the incumbent queen executed, even though she was just 16 years old.

I'm not making this up, folks. This is British History!

And because of it, residents of the British archipelago have a weird tradition of burning fuel-stuffed effigies, at this time of year. Usually accompanied by fireworks.

It's only not weird when you've grown up with it.

To this day, Britons burn an effigy of Guido Fawkes, and use the terms 'bonfire night', 'fireworks night' and 'guy fawkes night' interchangeably, to refer to this occasion.

And all because, on the 5th of November 1605, a band of Catholics attempted to kick off a revolt, by blowing up the House of Lords at the State opening of Parliament.

A tip-off, 10 days earlier, meant that, on the night, Guy Fawkes was found, sitting with 36 barrels of gunpowder, and promptly arrested, and was tortured to confession over the next 3 days.

In fact, he wasn't quite executed for treason, on the 31st of January 1606, because he slipped from the scaffold and broke his neck. The subsequent mutilation of his corpse proceeded regardless.

Perhaps it's the lack of a 'proper' execution that's made his pyrotic and perpetual post-execution such a popular meme.

In recent weeks, i've become familiar with a couple of 16th/17th century resources, that might provide some whiffs of cultural context to these events.

The Agas map depicts London as it was in 1561, when it housed only 200,000 people. It has been marvelously redeveloped from woodblocks of the time, by researchers in Canada.

'The Agas Map'

Interestingly, it depicts Old St. Paul's cathedral, according to its Norman construction from centuries before - completed in 1300, and with one of the longest open interiors of any building in the world - but without its spire, which made it the tallest building in the world, at the time.

That spire had burned down in 1561, when lightning hit. An omen taken as justification of both Protestant and Catholic zeal.

And possibly, also of the 'abuse' of Paul's Walk (the nave) which had become 'owned' by non-religious activity - trading, playing, and socialising.

When the Great Fire of London occurred in 1666, the intense heat melted the lead from the roof, and irreparably damaged the structure of the cathedral. This too was taken as justification of Protestant and Catholic zeal alike.

It was after then that the modern St. Paul's Cathedral had to be commissioned, and so was rebuilt on the Old's site. Christopher Wren had already been involved with talks to redevelop the damaged Old St. Paul's, and had suggested a complete rebuild. Through a poetic progression of events, he got what he wanted!

But such was the conservatism of his Churchy commissioners, that his desire to build the new St. Paul's Cathedral with a dome, was met with rejection. Domes were too Catholic - not Anglican enough.

Anecdote says that Wren was driven to tears by rejection of his favourite design, which he'd had £600 spent on the construction of a model for. For context, that's about the price of a real house!

But in 1622, the Old St. Paul's was still standing, spirelessly, and that's where my other finding comes in.

A couple of years ago, British researchers collaborated to develop a visual and audio reconstruction of the scenario of one of John Donne's sermons, from Paul's Cross - the bigots' soapbox, in the grounds of the cathedral.

'Virtual Paul's Cross Project'

They've put graphical reconstructions of the surroundings together with audio of how it would have sounded in the courtyard, to produce a (muted) idea of what it might have been like to be there.

According to Donne's descriptions, it seems that the environment was a very noisy, zealful one, around Paul's Cross.

One where quiet, thoughtful people would easily be drowned out by the noisy bigots - and where those noisemakers would assume the noiseless to simply be without any thoughts of their own.

“if you do not joyne with the Congregation in those Plaudites, the whole Congregation will thinke you the onely ignorant person, in the Congregation.”

That's what i call irony!

Perhaps it made a difference that they were all perpetually tipsy, as clean water was unavailable, and ale was the most popular alternative?

Such beer-baffled minds would be prone to inconsiderate behaviour like that.

Two articles to baffle your mind:

'How long is a day on Earth?'

One that baffles your sense of a 'day' and one that baffles your sense of 'sorry, what's education for again?'

'Campaign launched against proposal to teach bullfighting in Spanish schools'

If you ever find yourself argueing that something should be done because it's traditional, then that's your trigger to realise that it's time to stop talking, and start reappraising your position!


15 years of contiguous human life in outer space, on the ISS!

In other news:

Republican Presidential candidate Ben Carson has confirmed that, 17 years after he was first recorded saying it, he still believes the Pyramids of Egypt were made by Yahweh-guided aliens, as grain-silos - not as tombs for pharoahs, built by Egyptian workers, who were in turn motivated by "massive whips, Rimmer, massive massive whips". Carson, being a Biblical Literalist, insists that, whichever Bible it is he has, it's completely infullible, and therefore if it disagrees with reality then reality must be wrong. A fine leadership-worthy character for anywhere, let alone a continent-spanning superstate! <s>

In comparison, Kent Hovind immediately jumped straight back into the hot-seat on release from prison, according to Yahweh's divine plan, to do much the same thing - insisting that history is not, when it contradicts religious mythology. In fact, he jumped so swiftly, that he took potholer54 by surprise, with the video he's prepared for September this year: 'Making history fit the Bible'. Carson exhibits the same superstitious mumbo-jumbo and the same science-denial that superstitions motivate. Humanity really doesn't need more intellectually-dubious people, like this, in positions of power!

Peru's environment minister has announced that a national park is to be made, covering 14,170 square kilometres of the country's Amazonian basin, which actually covers most of the country - a lot more than will be covered by the national park. The reason given for protecting any of it, is that it is vulnerable to drug trafficking and illegal logging and mining. The Sierra del Divisor National Park will cover the homes of a variety of indigenous communities living in self-imposed isolation. Local communities are known to be best at combatting industrial desecration, as they are always present, and are most willing to put their lives on the line, to defend their homes, and their quality of life. The park has an estimated 3,000 species of plants and animals, many of them found nowhere else in the world.

So while conditions might be improving for Peruvians, where forest preservation promises to prevent hundreds of thousands of tonnes of CO2eq emissions from deforestation, an fossil oil company has been permitted to probe for fossil oil in the Democratic Republic of Congo's Virunga National Park! Virunga National Park is the oldest wildlife reserve in Africa, and home to the perilously endangered mountain gorilla. Minister of Hydrocarbons Aime Ngoy Mukena has confirmed that British fossil oil company Soco conducted the probing, under the park. The fallacious reasoning in defence of desecration of their country, is that the fossil fuel industry would bring money into the country, lifting it from poverty. But Reagonomics isn't true, and foreign fossil fuel companies have not resolved poverty in other nations of the world. My advice would be: ditch the fossil fuelled multinationals, and keep your environmental jewels!

French State tests on diesel cars have compared VW Group's vehicles with those of other manufacturers, and found that VW's are not the only ones to show higher emissions in real life than test conditions. VW's however, thanks to the software, were much higher in disparity than any other manufacturer's. So industry corruption of emissions tests is confirmed to be widespread, but only VW has been so prolific in doing so. At least, according to the manufacturers and brands that have been tested by them, so far. Germany's Transport Minister has also announced that at least 98,000 petrol cars have been identified as emissions-problematic. It's not only diesels that emit, after all.

New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science has unveiled the first ever baby Protoceratops skull to be discovered by human beings. Extracted from the desert badlands of New Mexico, also found were some teeth, an arm bone, a rib and probably vertebrae, but museum curator Spencer Lucas says there's still work to be done. The rest of the skeleton will be revealed over the next few months, and fortunate visitors will be able to see the process through the viewing screens at the museum. It must be like watching a dead baby be born 70 million years late :-P

Lower Austria - Austria's largest State - is now 100% renewables-powered, according to its governor. Lower Austria now gets 63% of its electrical energy from hydroelectric power, 26% from wind power, 9% from biomass and 2% from solar power. Because the Austrian government voted against the use of nuclear power in 1978, the country has been forced to use other energy sources. Countrywide, 25% of power still comes from fossil fuels. It should be noted that the majority of power comes from hydro, which is not tenable for most of the world; especially as hydro-stations generally come at great environmental and social costs.

Do whales voluntarily beach themselves? A school of 10 pilot whales dumped themselves on a French beach, this week, and the working hypothesis seems to be that the rest followed their dead leader until he washed up on shore. Seven died, meaning only three were successfully returned to the water. Kim Jong-Un would be so proud of their dedication to their leader. I wonder whether they were driven by stupidity, or emotional attachment to their kin? It could have been both.

Have you heard of the Fortingall Yew? Well, you might have done after this week, as it's become newsworthy for being a 5000-year-old man with female genitals. The Fortingall Yew, in Perthshire, central Scotland has for hundreds of years been recorded as male, but has recently been seen with berries, verified by Max Coleman of Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, who spotted the berries. But this isn't necessarily a sign of an old man experiencing a sex change - it's not the Caitlyn Jenner of botany, so sorry Glamour Magazine, you can put your facepaint/leafpaint away. Plant sexes work differently to animals' and so different terms refer to them. Plants are commonly hermaphrodite, monoecious, or dioecious, which is most similar to the human form of 'male' and 'female' each with their own sexually dimorphic reproductive organs. But even then, 'sports' still happen, which are branches that grow as a different sex to the rest of the body. It might be that this is what's happened with the Forstingall Yew. Fruit-bearing is biologically expensive, so oooooold trees like it would probably not have much motive to start growing female after so long. Then again, thousands of years of its history are unrecorded - maybe it does this periodically, and no-one noticed. It's also been suggested that stress might have caused hormonal 'restructuring' within the plant, causing development of female-sexed buds. Whatever the answer is, it certainly draws attention to the puerile nature of the old sexist dichotomy of 'all man' and 'all woman' being 'normal' according to feminists like Germaine Greer!

------------------------------------------------------ contemporary stuff

'Water droplet jumping in a superhydrophobic surface'
Awesome physics, under extreme conditions :-)

'"Tangled Up In Quantum Mechanics" by Lawrence Krauss'


'Freaky Micrographia - Objectivity #43'

'Clearing and Staining Fishes'

'Left-handed Electrons - Sixty Symbols'

'‘Cash machine’ Apple creates poor societies'

'CRAZY Feminist tries to get me fired: BACKFIRES SPECTACULARLY'
When the lies get on TV, somehow the shit feels so much more real!

'Mass suicide caught on tape'
Australia's a dangerous place. Sometimes people just give up ;-)

'"Donald McRonald, the Face of the New GOP" by Roy Zimmerman'


'World of Batshit - #5: Space Denial'

'Nerd³ - Twitch Reacts to the Reboot Day Reveals'

So Nerd³'s rebooted his channel, and this is how his own fans reacted to the big day :-D

'Image: Nile Delta fertility'

'Killer MacKillop | Coonawarra (Plonk Ep 5.1)'

'Herb, You Are A Bird | Coonawarra (Plonk Ep 5.2)'

'Nob Fountain | Adelaide Cellar Door Wine Fest (Plonk Ep 6.1)'

'Cleanskins | Adelaide Cellar Door Wine Fest (Plonk Ep 6.2)'

'The Chaser's Media Circus - Season 2 Episode 8'

'The Chaser's Media Circus - Season 2 Episode 9'

------------------------------------------------------ of the weeks

Word Of The Week: spoopy -- adjective meaning 'both spooky and funny'; it dates back at least as far as 2009, when a picture of a sign, presumably misspelling 'spooky' was uploaded to flickr

Expression Of The Week: 'spinning in their grave' -- meaning 'strongly insulted (as a dead person)'; comes from a comic exaggeration of the expression 'turning in their grave' the way a sleeping person would do, if disturbed (sleep is equated with being dead, as in 'RIP')

Fact Of The Week: author Roald Dahl was buried with his snooker cues, some burgundy, chocolates, HB pencils, and a power saw. No-one's seen him since.

------------------------------------------------------ non-contemporary stuff

'Suave - Mafia II (Glitch) - GameFails'

'Buckingham Void - Zombies (Glitch) - GameFails'

'Perfect Parking - Mad Max (Fail) - GameFails'

'Hood - Grand Theft Auto V - GameFails'

'Emergency Response - Grand Theft Auto V - GameFails'

'Casual Wreck - The Crew - GameFails'

'Buried Alive - Halo MCC (Glitch) - GameFails'

'Magic Trick - Grand Theft Auto V - GameFails'

'LeviTOADing - Witcher 3 Wild Hunt (Glitch) - GameFails'

'Honey Badger Don't Care - Far Cry 4 - GameFails'

And, of course, it wouldn't be a glitch collection without Assassin's Creed, would it ;-)

'Flapping - Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag - GameFails'

'Invisassassin - Assassin's Creed Syndicate (Glitch) - GameFails'

'Stuck the Landing - Assassin's Creed Syndicate - GameFails'

'Infinate Drowning - Assassin's Creed Syndicate (Glitch) - GameFails'

'Fight Club - Assasson's Creed Syndicate (Glitch) - MichaelFails'

'Perfect Dismount - Assassin's Creed Syndicate (Glitch) - GameFails'

Sunday, 1 November 2015

Entertainment stuff from the week 26/10 - 1/11/15

Hi we'eners,

I came down with a certain seasonal bug at just the wrong time, this week, so there's no talky stuff.


But there are a lot of videos. Don't watch them all at once, though - it might get quite noisy if you do :-P


The 31st October was the 40th anniversary of the release of the Bohemian Rhapsody / I'm In Love With My Car single. Bohemian Rhapsody holds the record for being at #1 on the singles charts, in the most calendar years - four - in 1975, 1976, 1991, and 1992.

In other news:

'This Week in Stupid (25/10/2015) - Part 1'

'This Week in Stupid (25/10/2015) - Part 2'

------------------------------------------------------ contemporary stuff

'Exploding Thermite Pumpkins! Halloween Science'

'Green Fire Pumpkin'

'Bradypus Giganteus - Objectivity #42'
There's a beautiful cast of a Megatherium at the Tring Zoological Museum, that i've seen many times

'What Were the Biggest Asteroids to Hit Earth?'

'Richard Dawkins: Essentialism'
The Dawkster's point on Essentialism long predates 2014, but this derives from a 2014 expression of it.

'Insanity in Space: Part 1 (The Beginning)'

'Scientology Going Clear -TLoNs Podcast #100'

'Tesla Autopilot | Fully Charged'

'The Impossible Pink Cards'

'GOD VS the NFL {The Kloons}'


'Strange Lady (found photos 1919)'

'"GIRL AT THE BAR" (Social Anxiety Poem #3) Tales Of Mere Existence'

'Old Vines & New Enemies | Barossa (Plonk Ep 3.1 - Season 2)'

'Ya-la-la-la-la-lumba | Barossa (Plonk Ep 3.2 - Season 2)'

'Branded Discontent | McLaren Vale (Plonk Ep 4.1 - Season 2)'

'Bunk Buddies | McLaren Vale (Plonk Ep 4.2 - Season 2)'

It tastes goooooood :-D

'Finding Your Totem Animal | McLaren Vale (Plonk Ep 4.3 - Season 2)'

'Hot Yachts with Josh Tyler (Plonk Bonus Clip!)'

'The Chaser's Media Circus - Season 2 Episode 7'

------------------------------------------------------ of the weeks

Word Of The Week: crapulence -- sickness through excessive eating, drinking, or general indulgence (old); treating other people with little respect, especially for personal pleasure (modern)

{Neither of these definitions apply to me, this week. Just so you know ;-) }

------------------------------------------------------ non-contemporary stuff

'Copos de Nieve' (Snowflakes)

‘Self-Righteous Escalator’

‘Heron Addict’

‘Levitating in the garden’

'The Darkness - 12 - Rack of Glam (Live in Chicago 2015)'