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Welcome to the Overnight News Digest (OND) for Tuesday, May 29, 2012.

OND is a regular community feature on Daily Kos, consisting of news stories from around the world, sometimes coupled with a daily theme, original research or commentary.  Editors of OND impart their own presentation styles and content choices, typically publishing near 12:00AM Eastern Time.

Creation and early water-bearing of the OND concept came from our very own Magnifico - proper respect is due.


This diary is named for its "Hump Point" video: Ripple by Grateful Dead

Please feel free to browse and add your own links, content or thoughts in the Comments section.

Any timestamps shown are relative to each publication.


Top News
Report on gas resources raises debate

By (UPI)
Environmentalists say a report by an international agency based in Paris predicting a "golden age" of gas plays down possible catastrophic climate consequences.

The International Energy Agency says gas use could grow more than 50 percent by 2035 if local problems with shale extraction can be overcome, but environmentalists say the report "buries" a warning that such a boom could lead to a catastrophic 6-degree Fahrenheit rise in global warming.

Critics say most policy makers won't get as far as that warning -- on page 91 of the IEA's report -- and that the agency should not be celebrating any golden age based on the consumption of fossil fuels.

. . .

"The IEA should be making that top priority not hyping the prospects for the gas industry. If we get a boom in gas that'll starve investment from the clean energy sources we really need."

Watching Big Brother: Privacy Board Delayed

By Martin Kaste
. . .

So here's an idea: How about an oversight board — a group of citizens responsible for watching the watchmen? Democratic lawyer Lanny Davis describes it this way: "They are read in, and brought in to the most sensitive intelligence and security programs and are there to review whether they are too close to the line of infringing on privacy and civil liberties rights."

As it turns out, there used to be just such an entity — the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board. The suggestion for the board came from the 9/11 Commission, as a kind of counterbalance to national security laws like the Patriot Act. Davis served on the board under President George W. Bush — until he resigned to protest White House interference.

But then a funny thing happened: Congress rewrote the law to make the board stronger — and independent of the White House. On paper, the board is now a formidable check against Big Brother. In reality, though, not so much.

. . .

The Obama administration waited three years, until last December, to nominate a full slate of members to the board. The nominees are now awaiting Senate confirmation, but there are ominous signs that Senate Republicans will block them, even though the nominees come from both parties. Asa Hutchinson, a former Republican member of Congress who served on the first incarnation of the board, says he hopes that won't happen.

Tuna contaminated with Fukushima radiation found in California

By Justin McCurry and agencies
Bluefin tuna contaminated with radiation believed to be from Fukushima Daiichi turned up off the coast of California just five months after the Japanese nuclear plant suffered meltdown last March, US scientists said.

. . .

The levels were 10 times higher than those found in tuna in the same area in previous years, but still well below those that the Japanese and US governments consider a risk to health. Japan recently introduced a new safety limit of 100 becquerels per kilogram in food.

. . .

Scientists say they do not believe contamination will linger in large fish capable of swimming farther afield, as they are able to metabolise and excrete radioactive substances.

. . .

"We were frankly kind of startled," said Nicholas Fisher, an expert at Stony Brook University in New York who took part in the study. "That's a big ocean. To swim across it and still retain these radionuclides is pretty amazing."

New Method Turns Embryonic/Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells into Cardiac Muscle Cells

By Tiffany Kaiser  
. . .

 Cardiomyocytes are important cells that make up the beating heart. These cells are extremely difficult to obtain, especially in large quantities, because they only survive for a short period of time when retrieved from the human heart.

 But now, the UW researchers have found an inexpensive method for developing an abundance of cardiomyocytes in the laboratory. This finding can help researchers model diseases in the lab, and allow these diseases to be studied. Researchers will also be able to tests drugs that could help fight these diseases, such as heart disease.

 "Many forms of heart disease are due to the loss or death of functioning cardiomyocytes, so strategies to replace heart cells in the diseased heart continue to be of interest,” said Kamp. "For example, in a large heart attack up to 1 billion cardiomyocytes die. The heart has a limited ability to repair itself, so being able to supply large numbers of potentially patient-matched cardiomyocytes could help."

. . .

 "The biggest advantage of our method is that it uses small molecule chemicals to regulate biological signals. It is completely defined, and therefore more reproducible. And the small molecules are much less expensive than protein growth factors."

Syrian diplomats expelled across world as outrage over Houla massacre grows

By Ian Black, Middle East editor, and  Chris McGreal in Washington
The US has joined Britain, France, a host of other EU countries, Australia and Canada in expelling Syrian diplomats in a chorus of global outrage at the massacre of more than 100 people, including scores of children, in Houla.

On a day when the UN reported that many of those killed at the weekend had been shot at close range, France's president François Hollande told French television that military intervention could not be ruled out but had to be backed by the UN security council.

. . .

It is also far from certain that angry words from across the world and Syria's growing international isolation would have any effect on a regime that is fighting for its survival and is still supported by its principal ally, Russia.

'Flame' Malware Said To Be Targeting Iran: Huge Deal Or Huge Hype?

By Mark Memmott
Word from the antivirus experts at Kaspersky Lab that "we've found what might be the most sophisticated cyber weapon yet unleashed," and that this Flame spyware is targeting Iran and some places in the Middle East, is getting lots of attention this morning . . .

Before buying into the dramatic headlines, though, check these related stories:

— Wired's Threat Level blog, points out that unlike Stuxnet (which did actual damage to Iran's nuclear program), Flame appears to be "an espionage toolkit that has been infecting targeted systems in Iran, Lebanon, Syria, Sudan, the Israeli Occupied Territories and other countries in the Middle East and North Africa for at least two years." In other words, it's more akin to a wiretap than a bug designed to do damage.

. . .

Update at 3:45 p.m. ET. In the report he's preparing for All Things Considered, Tom says that:

"The Kaspersky lab is comparing the Flame virus to Stuxnet, the computer worm used to physically disable centrifuges key to Iran's nuclear program. Stuxnet was clearly a weapon. But James Lewis at the Center for Strategic and International Studies says Flame should be put instead alongside the many other software programs designed by governments to help them steal commercial and security secrets from their adversaries."
Peru declares state of emergency after violence at mine protests

The Peruvian government on Tuesday declared a state of emergency in a southeastern province after eight days of protests over a proposed expansion of a huge copper mine left at least two residents dead and 70 police injured.

 The government's emergency declaration covers the province of Espinar and suspends constitutional liberties of speech and assembly for 30 days. The government also ordered the arrest of a protest leader, Herbert Huaman, who heads the Front for the Defense of Espinar Interests.

 Violence in Espinar broke out over the weekend after President Ollanta Humala described demonstrators protesting a $1.5 billion expansion of the Tintaya mine as leftist radicals. Widespread property damage was reported, as was the brief kidnapping of a judge.

Organ black market booming

By (UPI)
An estimated 10,000 black market operations involving purchased human organs take place annually, World Health Organisation experts in Switzerland said.

Dr. Luc Noel, a WHO official who runs a unit monitoring trends in legitimate and underground donations of human organs, said kidneys make up 75 percent of the global illicit trade in organs due to rising rates of diabetes, high blood pressure and heart problems, The Guardian reported.

"The illegal trade worldwide was falling back in about 2006 to 2007 -- there was a decrease in 'transplant tourism,'" Noel told The Guardian. "The trade may well be increasing again. There have been recent signs that that may well be the case. There is a growing need for transplants and big profits to be made. The stakes are so big, the profit that can be made so huge, that the temptation is out there."

Mexico: PepsiCo attacked by drug cartel

By Jill Langlois
Mexican potato chip company Sabritas, a subsidiary of US food giant PepsiCo, was the target of a drug cartel this weekend when it firebombed delivery trucks and warehouses.

. . .

A lieutenant from the Knights Templar drug cartel, whose home turf is said to be Michoacan state, has been detained in connection with the firebomb attacks, reported Fox News. The cartel is a pseudo-religious group that split from the state's La Familia cartel last year.

. . .

"There will be effects on investment," Hernandez said to the AP. "In fact, private investment, both foreign and domestic, has been stalled in recent years. There hasn't been any."

S Korea current account surplus almost halves in April

By (BBC)
South Korea's current account surplus has almost halved in April after exports of computer and phone chips and oil products slowed.

. . .

South Korea is Asia's fourth-largest economy and relies heavily on exports for growth.

Faced with weaker demand in Europe and the US, it is now looking at ways of boosting trade within Asia.

Does anybody still need aircraft carriers?

By Tom de Castella
They are floating airfields that can deploy a nation's military might across the world's oceans.

. . .

The US has amphibious landing ships larger than some nations' aircraft carriers

But for the Americans it is about projecting power around the globe. And they see the aircraft carrier as the best equipment for their global role, Lambert says.

. . .

Iran has about 1,000 fast patrol boats that can offer a new kind of asymmetrical warfare. By operating as a swarm, a frigate or destroyer would be overwhelmed by the sheer number of attackers. Whereas a carrier some way from the threat could pick off the attackers by scrambling its jets.

. . .

"If we're not secure at sea we risk starvation. Out of a population of more than 60 million we can probably feed 25 million ourselves," Lambert says. And 95% of the nation's imports arrive by sea, including much of its energy needs from the Middle East.

USA Politics, Economy, Major Events
Obama awards highest honor to 13 Americans

By (UPI)
U.S. President Barack Obama Tuesday said Bob Dylan and Madeline Albright were among the 13 "extraordinary" Americans awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

"Together, the honorees on this stage ... have changed our lives for the better. … It's our job to help let them know how extraordinary their impact has been on our lives," Obama said during the ceremony in the East Room of the White House.

. . .

Obama said lawyer John Doar "laid the groundwork" for the civil rights movement, adding, "I might not be here, if it weren't for his work."

US consumer confidence falls to eight-month low

By (BBC)
US consumer confidence has fallen to an eight-month low in May as fears about the global economy and a falling domestic stock market hit sentiment.

. . .

May's confidence figure was weaker than expected, with economists predicting a figure of about 70.

The figure is watched closely because consumer spending accounts for about 70% of US economic activity.

Separately, there was some cheer as evidence emerged of a tentative recovery in the US housing market.

Fake conspiracy theories, but real victims

By Kay
They’re purging voters again in Florida, as I’m sure you’ve heard:
Nearly 200,000 Florida residents may be disenfranchised by their state government, with officials in Gov. Rick Scott’s administration seeking to “scrub” names from the voter rolls in time for the November election.

. . .

 Voting rights activists are alleging that not only is Florida’s efforts to purge the rolls so close to a general election against federal law, but that the state’s program is strictly targeting Hispanic residents who may inherently have a hard time proving their citizenship. Groups call the purge “unfair” and pure “discrimination.”

I’ve resisted writing about this, because as someone who works with records all the time (like millions of other people) I am out of patience with the two branches of the conservative movement who “believe” state records are presumptively invalid and fraudulent unless personally examined by one or another paid conservative political operative. You got your birthers, and you got your voter impersonation fraud conspiracy theorists, and the two groups have a lot in common:
Welcome to the "Hump Point" of this OND.

News can be sobering and engrossing - at this point in the diary, an offering of brief escapism:

Random notes related to this video:
. . .

Hunter wrote "Ripple" in the folk song tradition during the late 1960's, with overtones of that Haight-Ashbury era, such as a sense of cosmic oneness, and of East meeting West.

. . . The first verse, addressing the listener, is about song, about listening to the song and making it your own. Hunter begins the verse by invoking the elements of song: words and tune, so that the listener is prepared to think about the song. The poet expresses concern that the song be sung by other people, opening up a discussion of the relationship between the singer and the listener, who will also, it is hoped, come to be the singer, in turn.

So the relationship between poet and reader is unity; they are both the poet. In this way, the original poet breaks out of mortality, since his thoughts will continue to generate new thoughts.

. . .

The chorus follows, and in this context the ripple has become a symbol of an individual life, caused by nothing a disappearing back into still water, back into the fountain not made by people. A life is a ripple. All life is still water. The chorus, then, is interpreted differently each time. The first time a ripple is a thought in an individual mind; the second time a ripple is an individual life in the pool of universal life.

The final verse conveys optimistic hopelessness. The poet is compassionate, as shown by the last line, but wants us to realize that there are no guarantees about life.

Back to what's happening:
Environment and Greening
Discovery of Historical Photos Sheds Light On Greenland Ice Loss

By (ScienceDaily)
A chance discovery of 80-year-old photo plates in a Danish basement is providing new insight into how Greenland glaciers are melting today.

. . .

The important point is not that deadly pollution caused the climate to cool, but rather that the brief cooling allowed researchers to see how Greenland ice responded to the changing climate.

The glaciers responded to the cooling more rapidly than researchers had seen in earlier studies. Sixty percent of the glaciers advanced during that time, while 12 percent were stationary. And now that the warming has resumed, the glacial retreat is dominated by marine-terminating outlet glaciers, the melting of which contributes to sea level rise.

. . .

"By far, more storms pass through this region -- transporting heat into the Arctic -- than anywhere else in the Northern Hemisphere. Climate change brings changes in snowfall and air temperature that compete for influence on a glacier's net behavior," he said.

India plants for energy

By Keya Acharya
A group of women working in a tree-shaded nursery in this arid part of southern Tamil Nadu state is helping to manage India's very first biomass energy plantation.

. . .

The women, who form over half the company's entire workforce, are happy to have an assured income in return for planting and tending saplings, making shade-nets and taking care of other nursery essentials.

Grown with seven indigenous biomass-producing plant species, the plantation is "one of the first of its kind in the world", says Venkatesan, who once worked as an executive with Motorola, the United States-based cell-phone giant.

. . .

According to the National Commission on Agriculture, India has 60 million hectares of degraded non-forest and forest lands available for tree growing, including biomass plantation.

Science and Health
Nasa team find 'new way' to spot osteoporosis

By Michelle Roberts
. . .

The new test - designed partly with astronauts in mind as they too can suffer bone loss due to the microgravity of space - looks for traces of bone calcium in the urine.

. . .

The technique developed by scientists at Arizona State University working with the US space agency analyses calcium isotopes - different atoms of the element calcium, derived from bone and each with their own specific number of neutrons.

. . .

The technique was able to detect bone loss after as little as one week of bed rest - long before changes in bone density would be detectable on conventional medical scans such as dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA).

Cannabis 'does not slow multiple sclerosis' progress

By (BBC)
Cannabis does not halt the progression of multiple sclerosis (MS), a medical trial has concluded.

The research - the biggest study of its kind in the UK - was carried out by the Peninsula Medical School in Plymouth.

. . .

Modern cannabis medications do not produce a "high" - the psychoactive ingredients are either missing or delivered in a much lower dose than in the illegal street drug.

. . .

"There are very, very few treatments for any neuro-degenerative disease, whether it's Alzheimer's, Parkinson's or progressive multiple sclerosis and we were very much hoping cannabinoid might slow down the progression of the disease as opposed to just ameliorating people's symptoms.

US Military Chips "Compromised"

By Christopher Mims
A researcher in Cambridge has issued a report claiming that a common sort of reprogrammable microchip (an FPGA, for you gearheads) contains a deliberately-obscured backdoor that would allow anyone with knowledge of it to clone or reprogram the chip. These chips are really common, and show up in everything from drones to nuclear power plants.

Robert David Graham of "cyber security consulting company" Errata says that these claims are overblown. It's not that these chips don't contain this vulnerability, he elaborates, it's just that nearly all FPGA chips have this vulnerability.

. . . the larger issue is that as military hardware incorporates more off the shelf parts, in theory, it becomes easier to hack. That's one reason why it's such a big deal that Iran recently got hold of an intact US drone, which they claim to be copying as well as sharing with China.

Myth of the Disconnected Telecommuter Debunked

By (ScienceDaily)
The assumption that employees who regularly telecommute will feel less attached to the organization they work for due to feeling isolated and disconnected is a myth, according to a study led by a communication researcher at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM).

. . .

Although feeling a sense of closeness with others during workplace interactions was associated with positive organizational identification, the study found that the negative relationship between stress from interruptions and organizational identification was stronger.

One possible reason, says Fonner, is that teleworkers consider fewer interruptions as being one of the perks of their remote work arrangement. "When teleworkers feel they are constantly interrupted, this may decrease the value of organizational membership for them, and diminish their attachment to the organization," she says.

Libraries Grapple With The Downside Of E-Books

By Ben Bradford
Digital books are the fastest growing area of publishing. Libraries are seeing a surge in demand for e-book titles as well, but there's a downside. Most major publishers won't allow libraries to lend their titles, while others impose restrictions or charge double or triple the print price.

. . .

BRADFORD: Demand for e-books might offer some relief to libraries after years of budget cuts. Digital books cut the cost of labeling, shelving and tracking physical books.

. . .

BRADFORD: And there are no late fees. The book just disappears on the due date. But despite their potential, libraries are struggling to stock e-books. Most major publishers impose heavy restrictions or refuse to lend their titles. They're afraid that could undercut digital sales.

. . .

BRADFORD: Another problem is that almost all U.S. libraries that offer e-books do so through an outside company called Overdrive. And libraries don't actually buy the e-books. They're in a way renting them. Here's Tom Galante, who runs the Queens Library.

RIM in Crisis as a Billion Dollars of BlackBerries and PlayBooks Sit Unsold

By Kyle Wagner
Things are getting dire for RIM, which diffidently announced its new BlackBerry 10 platform earlier this month to an internet full of aggressive disinterest. The latest grim tiding? Trading has been halted on RIM's stock—which is a very bad sign—on the heels of news that its stash of unsold BlackBerry phones and PlayBook tablets has ballooned to a value of just over $1 billion.

. . .

The world's total refusal to buy current BlackBerry products, along with its absolute nonchalance toward the upcoming BB10 stuff puts RIM in a tough spot. It can downplay its already struggling update and try to convince buyers to buy up the older stock, or it can just eat the massive loss and sing the praises of BB10 and its QNX-based platform.

On The Economic Ladder, Rungs Move Further Apart

By John Ydstie
. . .

This lack of mobility is especially true for people at the bottom of the income ladder. If you're born to low-income parents in the United States, you are significantly more likely to remain on the bottom rungs than in countries like Norway and Germany. In fact, 40 percent of Americans born in the bottom fifth don't get to the next rung.

. . .

"Even before the recent recession, incomes were not growing, on average," Sawhill says. "Then, if you add in the last few years since the recession and very weak recovery began, most people's incomes have actually declined after adjusting for inflation."

. . . Nearly 40 percent of African-American men whose parents make it into the middle class slide back down the income ladder in the next generation. One factor is that those families have fewer financial assets.

Adoption from Africa: Concern over 'dramatic rise'

By (BBC)
The number of children from Africa being adopted by foreign nationals from other continents has risen dramatically, a report has said.

. . .

"Compromising children's best interests while undertaking inter-country adoption is likely and adoption can become a vast, profit-driven, industry with children as the commodity," the African Child Policy Forum report said.

. . .

Most African children go to the US, which is where most adoptions from foreign countries occur - in 2010 more than 11,000 children from more than 100 countries were adopted by American parents.

. . .

People wanting to adopt children are increasingly turning to Africa because changes in adoption patterns and laws in other countries has resulted in a shortage of adoptable children, it says.

Gallery drops 'Zuma spear' image from website

By (Al Jazeera)
The gallery which exhibited a controversial painting of South African President Jacob Zuma has agreed to take down an image of the artwork from its website amid continuing protests.

The painting itself, which depicts the president's genitals and is called "The Spear", had already been removed from display at the Goodman Gallery in Johannesburg after it was defaced last week.

. . .

Murray said in his court affidavit that the intention of his Zuma painting, part of a show that criticizdd the ANC, was to express a sense of betrayal that some post-apartheid leaders were greedy or corrupt.

. . .

Zuma, 70, has been married six times and currently has four wives.

He has 21 children, and acknowledged in 2010 that he fathered a child that year with a woman who was not among his wives.

Meteor Blades is known to offer an enlightening Evening Open Diary - you might consider checking that out tonight if you haven't already.
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Comment Preferences

  •  Not a post. (27+ / 0-)

    Greetings, all.

    "So, please stay where you are. Don't move and don't panic. Don't take off your shoes! Jobs is on the way."

    by wader on Tue May 29, 2012 at 08:59:38 PM PDT

  •  The Most Expensive Episode Of TV Ever? (11+ / 0-)

    I briefly mentioned HBO's "Game Of Thrones" last night. I finally got around to watching it, and it didn't disappoint. The episode is rumored to be the most expensive hour ever produced for television. "Game Of Thrones" showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have said that they had to go on bended knee to HBO asking for a "considerable sum" in order to do it.

    The episode, titled "Blackwater," was written by George R.R. Martin (the author of the "A Song of Ice & Fire" book series on which "Game of Thrones" is based) and directed by Neil Marshall ('The Descent'). The budget for an average episode of "Game Of Thrones" has been reported to be around $4 million, and the pilot had a budget of $10 million. So start going North from there, and you have an idea of how much they spent for this battle.

    A few thoughts:

    • The "Wildfire" of the "Game of Thrones" universe seems to be analogous to Greek Fire or its modern equivalent; Napalm. The exact composition of Greek Fire has been lost to history, but it is known that it was used twice by the Byzantine Empire to repel sieges of Constantinople (Istanbul) in the 7th and 8th centuries.
    • I do wonder who people were "rooting" for while watching the episode? As someone who hasn't read the books on which the show is based, I can see how someone would hope that Stannis' forces would be victorious, since for the most part the Lannisters are depraved assholes who deserve to have their heads mounted on pikes. However, I found myself wanting the Lannisters to prevail, if only because I like Tyrion (Peter Dinklage). He's arguably the most "honorable" character in the show at this point.

    From Entertainment Weekly: has a list of new characters coming to HBO’s Game of Thrones in season three. Fans have been wondering which names from George R.R. Martin’s third Song of Ice and Fire novel A Storm of Swords will be introduced next year, especially since the lengthy book is being divided into two seasons.
    • – Mance Rayder: We’ve heard about him all season. A former member of the Night’s Watch who became the “King Beyond the Wall,” the leader of the Wildlings.
    • – Daario Naharis: A confident and seductive warrior.
    • – Jojen Reed; Meera Reed: A teenage brother and sister duo with special insights.
    • – Edmure Tully: A brash young member of the Tully family.
    • – Ser Brynden Tully (The Blackfish): Catelyn Stark’s uncle.
    • – Lady Selyse Florent: Stannis Baratheon’s wife.
    • – Shireen: Stannis’ daughter.
    • – Olenna Redwyne (The Queen of Thorns): Margaery Tyrell’s sharp-witted grandmother.
    • – Beric Dondarrion: A skilled knight who is the leader of the outlaw group Brotherhood Without Banners.
    • – Thoros of Myr: A red priest who follows the same religion as Melisandre.
    • – Tormund Giantsbane: A Wildling raider.
  •  Is New "Doctor Who" More Literary Than Old "Who"? (11+ / 0-)

    Is the original foundation of "Doctor Who" based in an Imperial British view of the world? Is The Doctor basically the equivalent of an English noble taking a tour of the Empire, helping the "savages" out every now & then? This is one of the arguments put forward in a new article in the New Yorker while discussing differences between the old & new iterations of the show.

    From io9:

    Many people prefer the newer Doctor Who series, masterminded by Russell T. Davies and then Steven Moffat, to the "classic" version from the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. Is that just a matter of taste and production values, or is the newer version more literary and thus more deserving of love?

    Writing in the New Yorker, Emily Nussbaum seems to think the newer series is more literary because it's more focused on relationships:

    The original "Who" dwelt on pure sci-fi obsessions, abstract questions of how society is organized and the line between humans and machines. But, as deeply as fans loved the show, its themes were rarely emotional. Instead, it jumped from Aztec civilization to Mars, as much an educational show for children as an adult narrative, with a British-colonialist view of the universe. (So many savages, so little time.)

    The series' most striking feature was the Doctor himself: in contrast to "Star Trek" 's Kirk-the Kennedyesque leader of a diverse society-the early Doctor Who was an alien iconoclast with two hearts and a universe-wide Eurail Pass. For a certain breed of viewer, this was an intoxicating ideal: the know-it-all whose streak of melancholy-or prickly rage, depending on who was Who-had to be honored, because he actually did know everything. Though that show had its charms, I was surprised, and delighted, to find that the modern "Doctor Who" has a very different emphasis: it's a show about relationships, in an epic and mythological vein.

    •  Yes, this series is engrossing at the personal (8+ / 0-)

      level (when it executes as desired), even when being merely lighthearted and "monster/alien-of-the-week" in focus.  The core team developed relatively ubiquitous, human dynamics among members as hardened roles softened into give and takes amongst the players.  Any character could be the teacher, the hero or the fool in a given episode.

      "So, please stay where you are. Don't move and don't panic. Don't take off your shoes! Jobs is on the way."

      by wader on Tue May 29, 2012 at 09:17:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  New Who v. Old Who (8+ / 0-)

      There was a recent podcast about this from Doctor Who Podcast Episode #138 - Literary Influences in Doctor Who. To sum up, there are literary influences in both the classic and new Who. New Who is neither more or less literary than classic Who.

      Yes, new Who is mostly about relationships and it is no surprise that it would appeal to a different demographic. Is new Who better than classic Who? I think that boils down to what ones personal preference in sci/fantasy drama is.

      Instead of being geared toward children/tweens (mostly boys) of the 1960s, 70s, and 80s, like old Who was. New Who is geared towards tweens/teens (boys and girls) of the millennial set.  New Who is targeting a different audience than classic Who and is made 20-50 years later. Its totally different, but yet has enough echoes of the vintage Who to make it seem familiar.

  •  1st Gen. iPad prototype w/dual ports sold on eBay (10+ / 0-)

    One lucky bidder over the long Memorial Day weekend bought a rare prototype of the first-generation iPad on eBay for $10,200.

    The original iPad prototype sold on Monday night, following a day-long bidding war between seven users. The device offers a glimpse at what Apple was originally considering for its iPad. Most interestingly, the prototype has two dock connectors — one for use in portrait mode, and another for use in landscape mode.

    According to the item description, both dock connectors work for charging the device and connecting it to a computer. Older Apple patent filings and leaked casings reveal that Apple was at one point considering giving the iPad dual dock connectors, but this is the first physical prototype to emerge that actually demonstrates the concept.

    - PCmag

    And, in related news...

    The auction house Sotheby's is selling an official memo from Steve Jobs to Atari about improving the World Cup Football game. The pages – stamped and signed by Jobs himself – describe circuit diagrams and paddle layouts. Delightfully, the stamp says "All-One Farm Design" and features a Buddhist mantra, "gate gate paragate parasangate bodhi svahdl." As you do.

    If you're thinking of picking this up you’d best have about $10,000 to $15,000 handy – although bidding could get fierce. Quoth MacWorld:

    The June 15th, 2012 auction features a 5 page memo sent to Atari employee Steve Bristow by Steve Jobs. This memo describes changes that could be made to Atari’s World Cup Soccer arcade game. These changes were designed to add play variety to the game and to extend the 'shelf life' for arcade operators. While the memo is typed on Atari letterhead, it also features a stamp imprinted with the name of Steve Job's company at the time "All-One Farm Design" and the address of the Jobs family garage (and the birthplace of Apple Computer). The memo features a circuit diagram and a hand written addendum.

    This is the earliest know documentation produced by Steve Jobs and predates the founding of Apple computer by almost two years. No other documents from Steve Jobs time at Atari are known to exist. Sotheby's sold another Steve Jobs document in December, 2011 for $1.6 million.

    - TechCrunch
  •  Thanks for reporting these stories wader. I'm (11+ / 0-)

    quite discouraged about the sad state of our privacy, constitutional, and civil rights, but can't think of anyway to reverse, or even slow the ominous trends.

    Perhaps, future generations, or some other emergent global power, or alien civilization will give them another try one day?


    The means is the ends in the process of becoming. - Mahatma Gandhi

    by HoundDog on Tue May 29, 2012 at 09:06:46 PM PDT

  •  Thank you wader ... (12+ / 0-)

    for everything.


    Fascism will come to the United States wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross. --Sinclair Lewis

    by maggiejean on Tue May 29, 2012 at 09:07:08 PM PDT

  •  Thank you!!!! (10+ / 0-)

    Best wishes to all here!

    Join us at Bookflurries-Bookchat on Wednesday nights 8:00 PM EST

    by cfk on Tue May 29, 2012 at 09:15:50 PM PDT

  •  Ripple is a song that gives tingles (9+ / 0-)

    Of course the Hunter/Garcia partnership and the rest of the boys produced masterpieces of many flavors.    This one just has something tingling about it.

    Having written that, I just took a peak at the American Beauty tracklist and recognized that the same could be said for Box of Rain.

  •  Thanks wader! (9+ / 0-)

    Absolutely fabulous :) OND tonight!

  •  War of 1812, or invading Canada will be EASY!!! (9+ / 0-)

    Slate: Happy 200th Birthday, War of 1812!

    This year marks the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812, a fact that may elude all but the most committed enthusiasts of America's more obscure wars. Don’t expect coverage to compete with or even register alongside the steady drumbeat that has accompanied the 150th anniversary of the Civil War...

    Canada stood out as the first and most convenient place for the Americans to strike at the British. A vast territory peopled by barely half a million souls with an apparently loose allegiance to Britain, Canada seemed an easy prize. Once it was taken, the British would have to acknowledge U.S. sovereignty, its dominion over North America, and to cease the disruption of American trade. Jefferson confidently predicted to Madison that enacting the plan was a “mere matter of marching.”

    This may have worked if the Americans had been able to assemble a force capable of marching. At the outbreak of hostilities, however, the army was a dissolute and ragtag force of fewer than 7,000 troops, led by an aging and ineffectual officer corps. Where the regular army fell short, state militias of public-minded citizen soldiers were to fill in. But New England governors, who blamed the war on the policies of Jefferson and Madison rather than the actions of the British, opposed the war and refused to raise militias (thus creating yet another vexing aspect of the war: The very people who were most adversely affected by the British were the most loathe to go to war with them). Meanwhile, those units that did form in other states were filled with so many unruly and disobedient men that even the ablest commanders found it difficult to lead.

    No one more fully embodied the pathetic state of early American military might than General William Hull, the bloated and incompetent governor of the Michigan territory charged with the initial matter of marching into Canada. Entering present-day Ontario from Detroit at the head of an ill-trained troop of 2,000 militiamen, Hull met with little initial resistance, but his triumph ended there. Upon hearing news that the British had taken Fort Mackinac at the northern tip of Michigan, Hull panicked and pulled his men back to the American fort at Detroit. When he received a bogus document warning of a vast force of Indians on the march, Hull lost it. Barely coherent, stuffing his mouth with so much tobacco that the juice ran down his face, and crouching to avoid imaginary artillery shelling, Hull yielded Detroit without any real fire from a smaller force of British Canadians and Indians. Incursions to the east didn’t go much better that fall. The war was just a few months old, and the entire Michigan territory had fallen into British hands.

    Surprisingly, the Americans had better luck on the water against the vaunted British Navy than they did on land against the Canadians.

  •  FLOTUS Michelle Obama on The View (6+ / 0-)

    It is a terrible thing to see and have no vision. ~ Helen Keller

    by Pam from Calif on Tue May 29, 2012 at 09:31:11 PM PDT

  •  182K voters being purged in FL (6+ / 0-)

    from flawed list - EdShow segment from this evening; when the clip is available will post;

    Romney - "All I need is 50.1%"

    and Florida's 29 electoral votes

    US unemployment crisis is a GOP production concentrated in red states, TX, OH, WI, ID, MI and FL where GOP governors have spread the pain. If not for public sector layoffs the national unemployment rate would be at roughly 7 % - Joan Walsh

    by anyname on Tue May 29, 2012 at 09:33:00 PM PDT

  •  Fl - everywhere (6+ / 0-)

    US unemployment crisis is a GOP production concentrated in red states, TX, OH, WI, ID, MI and FL where GOP governors have spread the pain. If not for public sector layoffs the national unemployment rate would be at roughly 7 % - Joan Walsh

    by anyname on Tue May 29, 2012 at 09:37:54 PM PDT

  •  Obama's tell (6+ / 0-)

    There is a lot to digest in this NYT piece. MoT has Glenn Greenwald's take in a rec-listed post. Here's one tidbit not directly related that is interesting just the same...

    NYT: Secret ‘Kill List’ Proves a Test of Obama’s Principles and Will

    Mr. Obama is a good poker player, but he has a tell when he is angry. His questions become rapid-fire, said his attorney general, Mr. Holder. “He’ll inject the phrase, ‘I just want to make sure you understand that.’ “ And it was clear to everyone, Mr. Holder said, that he was simmering about how a 23-year-old bomber had penetrated billions of dollars worth of American security measures.
    •  This is the Obama I expected (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Magnifico, maggiejean, Pluto, jlms qkw

      and I am not disappointed in that expectation.  Yay me.

      In other words, he would see what could work and minimize larger risks at the same time to others, then go with it until it either causes more problems or doesn't show up on the radar much, regardless.  Because his style has always seemed to be trying something that existed prior to his time and pushing its limits until a boundary is finally reached, then deciding if that's a good sign or not to stop.

      He gets himself onto missions and takes personal responsibility for such things.  That's both good and bad as President of the USA, as we're seeing.

      "So, please stay where you are. Don't move and don't panic. Don't take off your shoes! Jobs is on the way."

      by wader on Tue May 29, 2012 at 10:02:15 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  That's a complicated analysis. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jlms qkw, wader

        It would give Occam a sad.

        According to the Tea Party, there are three kinds of Conservatives: "Those who can do math and those who can't."

        by Pluto on Tue May 29, 2012 at 10:56:38 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's complicated because I tend to find myself (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          thinking much in the patterns that he exhibits, so find that his context and quirks come together at times in ways I can better feel than rationalize.

          That's both good and bad for me.

          "So, please stay where you are. Don't move and don't panic. Don't take off your shoes! Jobs is on the way."

          by wader on Wed May 30, 2012 at 07:50:17 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  It worked for me. (0+ / 0-)

            Truly, it did. And, I'm in the same place, except I arrived by the shorter route of choices and options that are off limits to a mere President.

            According to the Tea Party, there are three kinds of Conservatives: "Those who can do math and those who can't."

            by Pluto on Wed May 30, 2012 at 04:18:51 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Drone war winning hearts and minds in Yemen (6+ / 0-)

    WaPo: In Yemen, U.S. airstrikes breed anger, and sympathy for al-Qaeda

    Across the vast, rugged terrain of southern Yemen, an escalating campaign of U.S. drone strikes is stirring increasing sympathy for al-Qaeda-linked militants and driving tribesmen to join a network linked to terrorist plots against the United States.

    After recent U.S. missile strikes, mostly from unmanned aircraft, the Yemeni government and the United States have reported that the attacks killed only suspected al-Qaeda members. But civilians have also died in the attacks, said tribal leaders, victims’ relatives and human rights activists.

     “These attacks are making people say, ‘We believe now that al-Qaeda is on the right side,’ ” said businessman Salim al-Barakani, adding that his two brothers — one a teacher, the other a cellphone repairman — were killed in a U.S. strike in March.

  •   Climate Changes Turn Woods into Moose Graveyard (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Magnifico, blueoasis, jlms qkw, wader
    Scientists acknowledge wolves are a factor in the spiking moose mortality, but not significant enough to explain a 50 percent decline.

    On the Grand Portage Indian Reservation, at the Minnesota-Canada border, Seth Moore, the Chippewa band's chief biologist, has documented similarly stark declines, including a 40 percent mortality rate among radio-collared animals. The 70-square-mile reservation's once-robust population of up to 80 moose has dwindled to fewer than two dozen. This forces Moore to plot a future without the animal that has provided subsistence to the tribe since the early 18th century.

    Biologists are now documenting individual adult moose with tick burdens of 50,000 to 70,000, a ten- to twentyfold increase over what used to be a normal load. In addition to transmitting diseases, the ticks are irritating the moose, causing them to rub off large patches of hair and even skin, and leaving them greatly weakened from blood loss.

    Lenarz said biologists have encountered moose in February and March, both deep winter months in northern Minnesota, with as little as 10 percent fur coverage on their bodies. "The ticks are giving them plenty of grief already," Lenarz said, "And with no hair, if you're trying to survive in a cold climate, you're basically going to die from exposure. So it's a double whammy."

    The strange thing, after reading the first page, I scrolled down to the comments, & was surprised at what I perceived to be denial of weather changes capable of producing these extreme results.
    Any thoughts on this, please.

    The multi page article here.

    I`m already against the next war.

    by Knucklehead on Tue May 29, 2012 at 10:40:42 PM PDT

    •  Tick populations have been booming in this area of (0+ / 0-)

      the East coast due to downstream effects of climate change, by most accounts that I've read.

      Denialists are unfortunate, programmed sheep who should be loudly and fairly told to stop following politicians into the realm of science, lest they continue to be considered buffoons.

      "So, please stay where you are. Don't move and don't panic. Don't take off your shoes! Jobs is on the way."

      by wader on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:00:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  thank u, wader & love to all, each and every one! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jlms qkw, wader

    There are moments when the body is as numinous as words, days that are the good flesh continuing. -- Robert Hass

    by srkp23 on Tue May 29, 2012 at 11:10:13 PM PDT

    •  Thank you for coming in to share, srkp23 (n/t) (0+ / 0-)

      "So, please stay where you are. Don't move and don't panic. Don't take off your shoes! Jobs is on the way."

      by wader on Wed May 30, 2012 at 08:01:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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