Friday, December 14, 2007

So, my cousin called me out on recently only posting about aggravating republicans. She's right, but I really am worried about what is going to happen in the next year. I hate republicans. They scare me. I think anyone who can justify support for the current administration is worthy of scorn and humiliation. Expose them as the goat fuckers they are. The democrats aren't perfect, but we need constitutional triage right now, and any of them are better than any of the republican fearmongers. Maybe Richardson or Biden can become the surprise dark horse... Nah, who am I kidding, it's all rigged.

So I've been busy getting my thesis proposal done. It's almost there. I just got the last edits and comments from my final committee member, so the rest of this weekend is trying to get it done so that I can get signature from them first thing after the new year. I'm getting nervous about being able to finish by May. It should still happen, but it's going to be tough. I've got a couple of scholarship applications to get in during the next couple of weeks, and I have to have the PhD application in to the school by the first of February. It's big and scary to sign on for at least for another four years. I'm not 100% on it, maybe 80%. The thought of finishing up at 42 and fighting for post-doc and proffessor positions with people 10 years younger than me is a bit scary. Not being tenured until almost 50... yikes.

This is one of the best pranks on the ID dumbshits I've seen in a while.

Here's a list from the same people of the 50 most loathsome people of 2007.

Anyways, I hope everyone has a good 2008.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Another "star" Republican to avoid. Mike Huckabee. Sure, he's from Hope, AR. But he was a Baptist Minister, and doesn't believe in the separation of church and state that I think we desperately need. Being religious is fine. Involving religion in education or government is not. It makes it too easy to for government to become based on religion, and that is wrong. Religion should be a personal choice which helps you deal with life. It should never become a reason to stop learning about and questioning the world, which it becomes for too many people. Interpreting any religious text as literal is dangerous. As far as I'm concerned, all of the repugnicants want to turn the country into even more of a theocracy than it already is.
The system is down.

The system is down.

Please, can we impeach now? The repugs. would be smart if they put up with Pelosi in the White House for 6 months, just to distance themselves from these goat-fuckers. But they're not, and the dems aren't much better...

Monday, December 3, 2007

Check out this for more reasons not to vote for Ron Paul. I agree with much of what he says, except for the Alex Jones part. Alex Jones is an Austin conspiracy theory fucktard. Like Hunter Thompson with Nixon, I find it healthy to question anything which we might agree on. The man thinks traffic chicanes (used to slow traffic down in neighborhoods) are government mind control experiments.

I wish I could be this optimistic about the fate of the Republican party in next year's election, but I'm not. For two reasons, one that I won't be surprised if BushCo and the Republicans succeed in their tactics scare the American public into another four years of their crap. The Dems have zero backbone, and haven't given me any reason to think they are going to change in the next year. This leads to the second reason, which is that the top Democratic candidates are not the answer. I'll vote for them because I think we need to stop the hemorrhaging of the economy, environment, civil liberties, etc. which the current administration has caused, and getting the Repugnicants out of office is the first step; but Hillary is a political opportunist, and she'll say anything. I don't trust her, and I still think her campaign is going to implode. The only two I can feel good about (Richardson and Kucinich) have no chance of winning. It'll probably end up being Edwards and Obama, but I think they are still part of the corporate money machine. Will this election really send the Republicans back to political obscurity, like the '32 election? I hope so. If we don't have some sort of positive watershed event, we'll end up being a fundamentalist theocracy in 10 years, maybe sooner.

I was talking to some people today, and we got on the subject of how much things have changed since Kennedy. Kennedy had to assure people that he wasn't going to try to turn the country Catholic; that federal monies weren't going to go to the church. Now Romney has to assure fundamentalist Christians that, he is going to support their agenda of eroding the separation of church and state (nevermind the fact that Huckabee is a retired baptist minister). Now Kennedy wasn't perfect, by any means, and I don't pretend that religion hasn't always had at least some hand in American government, but the separation should be absolute. If you are religious, and it helps you live a better life, fine. I encourage it. If you want to send your kids to a religious private school, fine. The church should have nothing to do with public education or government. Period. Ever. It is a private matter. No religious school should ever get public money, and no religion should be taught in public school. Any church that directly tries to influence people's support of candidates should loose its non-profit status, and start paying taxes, and back taxes.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Lawmakers have come up with a plan to raise the CAFE standards to 35mpg by 2020. It is a step in the right direction, especially since the standards haven't been raised for 30(?) years. I can't believe it's 2007 and an SUV which gets 25mpg is considered to get good mileage. The automakers, of course, are balking at the new proposal. "It'll cost jobs" "We can't do it..." whine, whine, whine... Bullshit. They already have to average 40mpg in Europe. I think it is similar in Japan. American car companies need to get their act together, or they won't be around. What baffles me is, is that Toyota is complaining. They could ship the tooling over for their cars that already meet the standards, get the cars built in the US in two years, and advertise that they are 10 years ahead of the American manufacturers. Does Toyota not import cars to Europe? No, they're there. Do American companies ignore the European market? Nope. Hell, they even own a few of the larger European automakers. Bullshit, bullshit, bullshit. The US lags behind every developed country in fuel efficiency standards. We lag behind CHINA. If we had a progressive government that wasn't in bed with the oil industry and US automakers, we could easily reach the goals and then some. Reduce our dependence on foreign oil, and strengthen our economy. Why is American business so scared to be the world leaders in innovation again?

Saturday, December 1, 2007

So the people who wrote this test don't know percentages. I got every question right with no extra hints. How is that 98%:


I am 100% alcoholic god dammit! How dare they take that 2% away! Or maybe I just know way too much about alcohol...

So I've been hearing way too much about Ron Paul. Please. He is a conservative fucktard who just happens to talk about getting out of Iraq and being fiscally responsible (in that uniquely Republican way which involves cutting social and environmental funding, yet keeping big business subsidy) He's a trojan. He represents Galveston which is not a bastion of liberalism in Texas. He's accepted money from, which is a white supremacist web site; David Duke supports him; He doesn't think we ratified the 16th Amendment... Uggggggh. He wants to take the federal government back to the days of Reagan, because that worked so well. How long will we be paying for the savings and loan scandal? It's still gonna be a long time.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

I may have to go to Korea. This looks so wonderfly disgusting, that I need some now. Maybe I should go get some food in me...

Viva La Revolucion!

Diesel. Diesel. Diesel. If Detroit doesn't get their act together quick. There won't be American cars. This guy doesn't even have a high school diploma and he can make a H2 get double the mileage and four times the horsepower. If one third of our cars were running bio-diesel we could stop importing oil from Saudi Arabia.
The 86 Rules of Boozing. Learn them. #28 should be #1: If you cannot afford to tip, you cannot afford to drink in a bar. Go to the liquor store. Period.

Monday, October 29, 2007

I'd like to see this poll redone now (I'm sure it's out there, but I don't have the energy to find it), but it does point out the obvious fact Fox News is the advertising arm of the Bush White House. As of 2003: "48% incorrectly believed that evidence of links between Iraq and al Qaeda have been found, 22% that weapons of mass destruction have been found in Iraq, and 25% that world public opinion favored the US going to war with Iraq. Overall 60% had at least one of these three misperceptions". When you break it down by network, 80% of Faux viewers believed at least one of those. Now that Bush is Mr. 25% , he's only two points away from Nixon when he resigned (23%) and three points from Truman (22%) for the lowest approval rating ever. He's already overtaken Truman for the largest range of approval rating (T: 87 - 22, B: 92 - 25) How low can he go? People liked Carter (28%) and Papa Shrub (29%) more than him! (Source) Anyone who is a republican after this administration is really stupid. Not that I have any faith that the Dems won't find some way to fuck things up. They probably will and we'll get stuck with Thompson or Romney. Fuck.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Please, pretty please

So word around the uber-right wing campfire is that if the Republicans nominate Gulianni, they will pull out of the party and support a third party candidate. (BTW, this was decided at the secret meeting that Cheyney went to in Salt Lake last week). PLEASE DO!!!!!! This will splinter the Republican party, allowing the few remaining reasonable Republicans to ditch the religious right, and it will doom the religious right to the marginal status which they deserve. Then the Dems could run an Obama-Richardson ticket and win. I think a black and hispanic are exactly who need to be in charge for once.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

O.K. something positive...

A promising development in cancer research. We all know someone affected. Currently, it's just being tested on skin cancer. The hope is that it can be used on ovarian and pancreatic cancer.

because everyone needs to see this:

Here is the Daily Kos post

Here is his response to Rush as posted on Daily Kos:

UPDATE: As I was preparing to post this, Brian emailed me his response to Rush’s statement made on the radio today. Here it is in its entirety:

So, Rush Limbaugh called me a "suicide bomber." More slander from the high and mighty sitting in his chair nursing the boils on his ass. I can assure you that I am no suicide bomber and that I can think for myself.

Rush, your phony soldier comments pissed me off. The audacity of someone like you who never had the courage to stand and fight for what you believe in makes my head spin. That is what made me stand up and state my convictions in front of a camera. I wanted to point out that you are wrong. I am not a phony soldier. I believe that we are not doing the right thing for national security by staying in Iraq. We are putting too much strain on our military by extending tours and not giving people enough time at home to rest. We have taken our eye off of the real Al-Qaeda and let them regroup to their pre-9/11 strength. We have not developed a political system in Iraq that would enable the country to stand on its own.

I stood in the sand, snow, dirt, mud and dust of both Afghanistan and Iraq. I spent over a week on a side of a mountain in Afghanistan during Operation Anaconda. I received The Bronze Star medal for my actions during that battle. I crossed the border into Iraq with the first wave of the 101st Airborne. I sustained an open head injury on the streets of Mosul after a vehicle borne IED exploded next to the vehicle I was riding in. I have seen the aftermath of a real suicide bomber. I had loved ones who died in the 9/11 attacks. I have friends and colleagues who returned from the war in body bags.

How dare you call someone like me a phony soldier and a suicide bomber? In the commercial I just taped, I told you unless you had the guts to say something to my face, stop telling lies about my service. Well you haven’t had the guts to say it to my face, but I am waiting and the offer is still on the table.

And another soldier pissed off at that chickenshit chickenhawk Rush. May sir oxy rot in a bath of his own diarrhea !

Republicans are evil.

I even heard FauxNews try to say that Iran was involved with 9/11. What?

Bush and Cheney are evil.

We are fucked.

I'll be surprised if the 2008 elections go off without big problems.

amazingly, the Supreme Court decided not to hear these cases so the lower court rulings stand.

Monday, October 1, 2007

So, it's been a while. Been busy. I had to turn in a draft of my proposal to my adviser today, so that has been taking up much of my time. As soon as he gives the word, it goes to the rest of the committee. Hopefully he can get through it quickly.

Patrick O'Grady says it best: "Euro-pro cycling is not a sporting event, but a rolling crime scene." It's a fucking trainwreck and I can't look away. At least some other sports are about to get in the mix. MLB and USADA said, "that there were signs that none of their athletes wiould be found to have been involved in the sprawling distribution network that involved drugs from China." Huh? I'll bet that the signs are that they ARE involved. That or MLB paid enough money to have that evidence disappear. Here Barry. Here Barry....

Anyways, hybrid cars are dead. E85 too. Long live diesel. They have actually shown that people buy the current crop of hybrids as image statements, and that they never pay for themselves in gas saved. Yes, they use a few percent less in gas and burn cleaner, but diesels use somewhere around 30% less over their lifetime, and have higher resale value. Honda is even dropping the Accord Hybrid (It actually gets worse mileage than the standard V6) and they are going to replace it with a diesel. Nissan is introducing a diesel Titan in 2009 I think. Volkswagen makes a V10 diesel for the Toureg in Europe. It has more torque than the Cummins diesel that comes in the Ram 2500. Burns cleaner and gets better mileage. It's about time. These aren't the clackity diesels of the 70s. In January the US switched over to ultra-clean diesel and now manufactures are going to finally start developing them. Audi has been running diesels in their Le Mans race cars for the past couple of years and blowing everyone away. I'm tempted to find an old Canadian 4Runner in diesel... Switch it to biodiesel. Yeah baby...

What republicans are hypocrites?

Has anyone else noticed the similarities between Bush and Ahmadinejad? They are both right wing religious nut jobs. They are both unpopular in their own countries. They both say really, really stupid things. They both have gone against the wishes of the UN. They both rose to power by appealing to a scared, rural, intolerant, undereducated, and fundamentalist religious base. They both believe that they are leading their country to the end of times and the second coming. Ahmadinejad is Iran's Georg Bush... Scary. We are so fucked.


Tuesday, August 21, 2007

I've heard some otherwise smart people say that nuclear power is a potentially acceptable energy source. It isn't. Period. If you thought you could trust the people doing the research on it, read this. They are as trustworthy as those in the oil industry. We CAN'T deal with the waste. There is NO place it can be put safely. Until they can figure that out. It should be off the table completely.

Monday, August 20, 2007

So, Montreal may be my second favorite city I could never live in. I knew it would be a nice city, but it has a feel that most US cities, that I’ve been to, are lacking. The locals are friendly. It’s young and vibrant, but old world at the same time. It’s a bilingual city, which just by being that, makes it smarter than most of the cities in the US. A significant number of people commute by bike. Downtown has as many people on bike as the campus area near UC Berkely, maybe more. Certainly more than right around campus in Austin, and more than any city I’ve recently been to in the US. The conference was in the heart of downtown, and is really at the heart of the city. I walked through Chinatown from my hotel to the conference center. Old Montreal is just a few blocks on the other side, and easily traveled by foot. While touristy it still has a good feel to it. The area towards McGill University is just back on the other side of the conference, and the Montreal Museum of Contemporary Art is there. Right now they have a show of Bruce Nauman’s work (He went to UC Davis back in the 1970s, I believe). The Latin Quarter (which isn’t particularly “latin” in my definintion) is just a short walk from there. It’s a particularly vibrant area of town, with many restaurants and bars. One of the bartenders at the conference (yes, they serve beer for the evening poster session) pointed me to the Cheval Blanc as a good Montreal microbrewery. It was. Friendly barkeeps, too. I know that once you get out of downtown it becomes a much more spread out city, but cities like Dallas, Houston, and LA would be much better places if the downtowns were as compact and vibrant as Montreal. If they didn’t have such brutal winter here… I mean, they essentially have an underground city for the winter, which means their winters are as brutal as Houston’s summers.

Scientific conferences, for those that don’t know, are the land of the brilliant and poorly dressed. Especially international ones. The no socks with the sandals memo didn’t make it to the Germans. I don’t claim to be the best dresser in the world, but I can usually get reasonably close to matching. I don’t mix green madras with orange stripes. The Swedes did keep up the black metal scientist rep for this conference. There were a bunch of Japanese at the conference. I didn’t expect so many limnologists out of Japan as that. Overall the conference was good. I saw a number of talks that really have me thinking about my work. I also saw some really bad ones. This one woman gave a talk where she said “uh” or “um” over 250 times. I’m not exaggerating. I think I’m underestimating it by a fair amount. I was close to walking out, but something made me start counting. At least once per sentence in a 20 minute talk. I’m not making fun of her. I know she was nervous. This conference is probably the most important one in my field. I’d be nervous too. In some ways I wish I’d given a presentation, but in other ways, I’m glad I didn’t. My poster was fairly well received. Alex Horn (who along with Charles Goldman is one of the patrons of the field) talked to me extensively about it. I’ve interacted with him before on Clear Lake stuff since that was his study site back in the 60s. He certainly fits the mould of the classical limnologist.

So now I’m back and have to prep for a busy semester trying to finish up my work and teach. The next 9 months are going to be brutal, but I’ve got to graduate in May...

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

So, I haven’t had the chance to post after the Tour… Honestly I’ve got to say it hurt a little. I was really hoping for a clean tour after last year and the early part of this season. It was wide open. It could have been the most exciting tour in years, and in many respects it was. Much of the excitement was for the wrong reasons. Fuck you Vino! Fuck you Kash! Fuck you to all the others who thought they could get away with it. I really WANT to believe that all the doping is someone in the LNDD has it out for cycling (and they do need to have all certifications pulled until they fire the people who are leaking information to the press….) But I don’t. Two people on the same team get popped for blood doping. Shit, at least with EPO, HGH, Testosterone there’s a CHANCE of getting away with it. How dumb are you?! If they do a blood test, they can tell pretty easily if you’ve got someone else’s blood in you. You want to prove you’re innocent? The first statement out of your mouth should have been, “Do a blood test right now!” The cells live for 60-120 days. If it came up negative, then you’d have a case. Otherwise get out of cycling you dumb jock. No better than a fucking football player, you. I don’t know what to think about Rassmussen. They didn’t catch him actually doping, but he missed two out of competition tests, and lied about where he was. It doesn’t look good. Again, you dumb fuck, in this day and age, you know how bad that looks. If the Tour was really that important to you, do the paperwork. I want to believe that you were robbed of a legitimate win, but Floyd is innocent too…. Yeah right. Do I think Contador, Evans, and Leipheimer are clean? I don’t know. Contador is suspicious. He may have won this tour clean, but I’ll bet we find out in a year that the “A.C.” in the Oparacion Puerto documents is him. It doesn’t look good when a bunch of male cyclists are going to see the same Spanish gynecologist. The top three were really a ways ahead of everyone else. I’ve seen a number of things saying how they all had unrealistic power output on the climbs, comparing it to the heyday of EPO in the early 90s. I can see the human body progressing a ways in 15 years. Remember they used to think that running a 4 minute mile was impossible. Now, that’s slow. I can see a few people getting to that level with the right training, and a few more with some “help”. Discovery Channel had said they weren’t continuing sponsorship of the team after this year, and now the team is walking away. Giving up a ProTour license, even when they were mostly there in talks with a couple of sponsors. I don’t know what that says. Either they really don’t like the state of top professional cycling, or someone might get too close to the truth. I hate being a cynic about it, but I’m not left with much choice. I hope the riders can find jobs next year. Another rant about the LNDD: it sure looks to me that they are the only lab who finds dopers. I don’t trust them because of it. There are only two answers. Either they are the only ones doing the job right, or they are fixing data. Neither answer is good, but I just can’t bring myself to accept them when they can’t deal with their leaks to the press. If you are holding someone’s livelihood and career in the balance, you need to have irrefutable proof, and they don’t. I’ve said it before, in criminal investigation, their data would get thrown out of court. They don’t follow their own protocol. They have the same people analyze the A and B samples. They don’t follow manufacturers protocol on some of their equipment. Even if their results are good, it opens the door for questioning. And they don’t seem to be doing anything about it, which is suspicious. Arggh!

I have a web acquaintance who recently passed his one year anniversary of getting hit by a drunk driver (on his bike). His posts about it got me thinking about me getting hit. Someone on his blog claimed some of the mental stuff he’s dealing with is PTSD. I’d buy it. I think I probably still suffer a bit from it. It’s been 5.5 years for me. There are a number of reasons why I don’t ride as much as I used to. One of them is getting hit. Sure, I’ve got school keeping me busy and I can walk to campus, but I got tired of being angry on the bike. I really tried to get back into it after getting hit. Not racing. I’m done with that, but living my traveling life on the bike. It was one of the things that kept me going, wanting to ride again. As can be seen from the first part of this post, I still love the sport (even if I’m mad at the upper professional levels of it). It’s been a hobby and a profession of mine for much of my life. Bikes and science are what I have done, and what I love. I pedicabbed because I knew it would get some of my fitness back, and it did. I got back to where I was commuting much of the time on bike (through the intersection that I got hit in). I had been riding and commuting for almost 15 years before getting hit. I know how to ride in and with traffic, and I’d had close calls before. But, a couple of years after getting hit, I realized I can’t relax on the bike anymore. Maybe “can’t” isn’t the right word, but I have a hard time. What used to be one of my escapes and one of the things that kept me mentally grounded, was now something that caused stress. It’s been very painful to come to that realization. I’m trying to accept that until I live somewhere where I can mountain bike a lot, I probably won’t ride a lot. Maybe I can prove myself wrong, and find the time sooner…

So, I’m currently in Montreal, for a conference of limnology geeks. This is my first time here, and I’ve got to say I’m impressed with the city. The weather is beautiful. They have dedicated parts of streets for bikes. Not just a lane on the side, but a separate part of the road which is designated for bikes. Behind a curb. People walk around town. I haven’t explored much, but for a city of over 3 million people, it doesn’t feel spread out. Similar to San Francisco in many ways, but older so it’s probably the other way around. Compact, with a number of distinct districts. It’s not exactly cheap, but then the Canadian dollar has gotten stronger (or more likely, the US dollar has gotten weaker). They’ve got a little “Chinatown” (quotes because it’s really more Asiatown. The Vietnamese and Koreans are lumped in too). Had some great Vietnamese food for lunch. Neither English or French are the common language in that district. I’ll probably explore old Montreal a little on Wednesday. They’ve got a mountain park in the middle of town. The St. Lawrence river is the port. Two (at least) well respected, in my field, universities (McGill and UQAM). It’s too bad winter comes around, because so far I like it. The food has been good. Even the conference coffee is decent. The beer, well if you are in Montreal, you drink Molson. I haven’t felt the need to go out to the bars yet, so I don’t know if there are microbrews yet, but there have to be. It’s a big city. I got a 6 pack of Unibroue Fin Du Monde and it tastes like homebrew. STRONG, but yeasty. Not what I was expecting, but decent. Not what I usually drink. I prefer more hops to more alcohol.

must go pretend to be smart...


Thursday, July 19, 2007

College Republicans are soooooo stoopid. The depth of their hypocrisy knows no bounds:

Untitled from huffpost and Vimeo.
If you go to the post you'll see a number of comments still blaming Nader. Let's get this straight people: Yes, I believe it was 3% of Floridians voted for Nader, enough for Gore to have overcome the election fixing that the Repugnicans did. However, there is no telling if all of them would have voted for Gore, had Nader not been in the race. I believe the blame lies squarely on the 12% of DEMOCRATS who voted for Bush! (oh, and on Gore, and 4 years later, Kerry for running completely incompetent campaigns) So let's stop blaming Nader, and start looking at the quality of the candidates we've chosen over the past 30 years:
Carter: his presidency is considered by many to be a failure (not me), but he is by far the most socially active living ex-president. (score = +1)
Mondale: can you say boring incompetent campaign? (score = -1)
Dukakis: again, can you say boring incometent campaign? (score = -1)
Clinton: o.k. not boring, charismatic, quite probably and ass hole, but he was our ass hole (read Hunter Thomson's "Better than Sex")(score = +1)
Gore: Boring! No one to blame but himself. Probably not an ass hole. Florida election was fixed (score = -1)
Kerry: Boring. Smart, but boring. Ohio election was fixed (score = -1)

So that's 2:1 boring. The sheep are a lot more accepting of a charismatic dick head, than a boring nice guy.

The current crop will most likely shake up, since career ending dirt will almost certainly be dug up on somebody, since they're starting the campaign well over a year before the election. Hillary doesn't have anything close to Bill's charm. I also think there are far better feminist candidates who are male. She's too much like Feinstein, and I don't trust either of them. Obama's got the charm, but a lack of experience on the national scale (not that W had any experience other than running an oil company, a baseball team, and a state into the ground.) I think this country is still way to bigoted to elect a black candidate. Edwards... something just feels wrong about him. Richardson doesn't have the name recognition. The little bit I know about him I like, but again not charismatic enough to pull himself out of the hole he's starting off in. Kucinich looks like a cartoon character, but he does have a young, attractive wife, with a tongue piercing. The rest of them I don't know. I'd like to see an Obama/Richardson ticket (in either order), but that would need a lot of people overcoming their racism against blacks and Mexicans.

If you really want to be scared about our world go here. So much of it has already happened.

Mountain bikers are doing well so far this year at the Tour. Rassmussen is in the lead (Former world champion mountain biker) Cadel Evans is positioned well going into Saturday's time trial, and the Pyrenees on Sunday. Right now I'd say the top 9 all have a shot, but Rassmussen needs to get a whole lot more time ahead, because the Chicken does not have a good history with time trials. Leipheimer will have to step it up in the next mountain stages. He's probably the best time-trialist in the top 9, but he's going to have to crack some of his competitors and at least finish with the leaders on all of the mountain stages. I don't know if the French will put up with a third American in a row winning the Tour.

And just in case you thin the bible is all good, go here.


Sunday, July 15, 2007

So, I was listening to NPR a couple of days ago, and they were talking about a Bush press conference where he was talking about the link between Iraq and Al Qaeda, and Helen Thompson (Thomas?), the senior White House correspondent that the bushies tried to kick out of the front row a couple of years ago, said (and I believe I have the quote right), "Mr. President, you do realize that Al Qaeda wan't in Iraq until we were, don't you?" She rules. I haven't been able to find a video of it, but I wan't one. I don't think he does realize it. If he does, he doesn't care. Or Cheney doesn't care. Both of those goat-fuckers need to be impeached. They've done so much to deserve it. Crimes against the constitution. At least some are starting to call for it with Cheney.

I can't believe that anyone believes anything that comes out of their mouths. Chertof's "hunch" that Al Qaeda is planning something. The recent report that they are stronger than since 9/11. My hunch is: bullshit! I'm not surprised that Faux News is really biting on that one. They should be strung up for not stopping at Afghanistan.

More crap from the bushies: The former Surgeon General says he was muzzled. He had to mention Bush at leas three times per speech. Additionally, he was told not to go to the Special Olympics, because the Kennedy's were involved and you wouldn't want to help "those people". Excuse me. It's the Special Olympics. It's supposed to transcend politics. I guess nothing does with those jackasses.

I love it when right wingers who make their careers get caught in their hypocrisy. David Vitters (R-La) was one of the DC Madame clients. In my best Nelson voice: Ha Ha!

Speaking of the Simpsons, the movie comes out soon. I think it will be a trip up to Austin to the Alamo Drafthouse. Why every movie theater isn't on this model is beyond me. Food and beer during the movie... Mmmmmm. Beer.

So the Tour de France is about to get interesting. We've been through the first week of crashes and are hitting the mountains. Tomorrow might see some fireworks, but Tuesday and when they hit the Pyrenees next weekend, things should shake up a bunch. I don't think Levi's going to do it, although he's got a chance. Vino would certainly be an interesting winner. Back in the day he used to attack just for the hell of it. Exciting to watch, but not going to win the Tour. I'd like to see it happen. Cadel Evans? The first Aussie winner? Maybe.


Tuesday, June 19, 2007

I don't smoke pot, but I don't think it should be illegal either. It clogs up the justice system, and does less harm than my drug of choice, alcohol. (It just puts me to sleep instantly.) Apparently, there's a former Texas narcotics officer who agrees. He's selling videos about how to hide your stash during a search. He's releasing his second one.

I was going to link to an update of this, but it's dissapeared off the AP site. Hmmm. Anyways, why can't the press (and the Democrats) get some balls, and expose the current administration for what they are: The WORST administration since Nixon, and possibly ever. I was really happy when Jimmy Carter said it, and really upset when he started crawfishing about it. Stick you your guns, man.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

It's hip-hop about bikes. I'm still really not sure what a "Scraper Bike" is. The Trunk Boiz are from Oakland.

More tech for the lazy alcoholic: The Beerbot. Now I don't even need to pour my own beer. If it will make a whiskey-water then I'm in trouble.

I must admit to feeling a fair bit of schadenfreude about the Paris Hilton fiasco. I've never been in jail, but I'm sorry, I can't help but laugh a little. The poor little rich girl is upset that the law actually applies to her. Yes the sentence is tough, but she was given a second chance with probation. Don't piss off the judge. She's not getting a long sentence because she's famous. She's getting a long sentence for the crime because she though her fame meant she didn't need to obey the terms of her parole. Now can it stop taking up the entire news cycle?

Speaking of cycle. Daniello Di Luca won surprised everyone and won the Giro di Italia. I hope he was clean, because it was a great race. The top climbers in the world tried to crack him, and just couldn't. Gilberto Simoni did the fastest climb (in vertical distance per time) in a race ever. Faster than Armstrong or Pantani ever did. Still Di Luca didn't crack. 23 year old Andy Schleck showed that he may be the future of the sport. Best young rider and second place. For those that don't know, long stage races like the Tour, Giro, and Vuelta, generally don't suit young riders. Being able to race for three weeks at a top level takes some age and maturity.

Not much more to say for tonight...

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

So I don't know if anyone who isn't a cycling geek is following the Floyd Landis hearing about him doping during last year's Tour de France. What a bunch of amateur mobsters. On all sides. Personally I think they're all guilty. Nobody gives me any reason to think otherwise. As soon as there is a new test, there will be people finding new ways to get around it. I want to think that cycling is getting unfair attention about doping, and I do think that sports like baseball, football, soccer, and hockey dope more, but cycling at that level is dirty. Not everyone, but the guys at the top. Hell, half the mid ninety's Telekom team is admitting it, including Bjarne Riis, the winner of the 1996 Tour de France. He told them they can come get the jersey. Now he owns and manages a team: CSC. They've been dirty for a long time. Merckx got caught a few times. Patrick Lefevere, who now manages a team, admitted taking speed in his day. I haven't heard it yet, but it wouldn't surprise me if Indurain, one of the classiest cyclists ever had doped. He won the Tour five times in a row. (Riis beat him in 1996). With the 1996 tour if they decide to take the title away from Riis, second place was Ulrich (implicated in Operacion Puerto, and persona-non-grata in the cycling world currently), third place was Richard Veinrique (implicated in the Festina Affair) They'd have to go pretty far down the standings to award it to someone who might not have doped.

Even so, USADA and WADA (the United States and World Anti Doping Associations) are also a bunch of ass holes. If this were a criminal prosecution, all of their evidence would be thrown out of court. The lab didn't follow protocol, and even the manufacturer of their machines said they didn't know what they were doing. For professional athletes, cyclists are by far under the most scrutiny. They need to be available not only after and before the races for blood and urine tests, but also ANYTIME the WADA wants. If they miss a test then they get suspended as if they were positive. Let's see a baseball or football player put up with that. Sorry Barry, I know it's late and you just finished playing a double header, but you hit two home runs, and we need some pee and blood. (BTW, Bonds is guilty) Dick Pound and the rest of those jackasses need to be strung up for all the leaks of information, and the attempt to try this in the court of public opinion before the data is all in.

It hurts that my favorite sport is being ruined by money. They have to start an unlimited class, or start a season of amnesty, and then get really strict on people who dope, or we're just going to have to accept that some people will cheat, and do the best to catch them. At least riding a bike is still fun.

On to politics, so Monica Goodling testified to congress this week. Somehow they gave her immunity. What did she do? She played the "I'm just a girl" card. Oh come on. You were hired into a position you weren't qualified for, because you went to Liberty University (started by Jerry Fallwell, consistently rated one of the worst Law Schools, but has a strangely high percentage of graduates in the current administration) and would be willing to ask inappropriate questions in interviews. Things like: "are you a Democrat or a Republican?" Even if it was under the direction of Bush/Cheney/Rove/Gonzales, you still deserve to go down. Why won't this ship sink? Lie after lie after lie. How even die hard Republicans can support anything that comes out of their mouths is beyond me. Easily the worst administration since Nixon. In a few years we might see them as worse. Goat Fuckers! It's too bad that Carter started crawfishing on that statement.

Must stop ranting...

So I got a few seconds to flip channels yesterday after the cable guy set things up here at the house, and I saw what may be the best thing ever on some ESPN offshoot. Not just demolition derby, but demolition derby with combines. Big tractors running into each other, in the mud. Wow...

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

This is off my favorite blog:

Check out this animation about the end of the world.

So I've been to a couple of donut shops lately, and it seems like the concept of the"bakers dozen" has been lost. When you buy a dozen, you are supposed to get one more out of the box to eat on the way to the meeting/work. Hell, you're the one picking them up. You get one for flying. Both Shipley's (an area chain) and my favorite place Mrs. Johnson's don't do the bakers dozen anymore. That's just wrong.

Colbert was on fire last night. This poor boy had to learn about global warming. Of course, according to Faux News this is a bad thing that he was required to watch "An Inconvenient Truth". It's about as simplified as you can get for explaining global climate change... Grrr...

I've closed on the sale of my house. Friday, I close on the purchase. Now, if I can keep from fucking my back up before the move, it should go smoothly. I've been filleting a bunch of fish for my project, and the bench I have to use is low so I have to stoop over. The back doesn't like that. I've got about 100 more to go...

I'm out...

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


Check this out! If they ever decide to get into sharking pool or darts, we're in trouble.


Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Well, I agreed on a contract to sell my house. It sold in under two days for over asking price. The Austin real estate market is treating me well. It'll be sad to leave, but I'm not going far and I've wanted to get out of living in a city for a while. I've already picked out a new place in San Marcos, and am having it inspected on Saturday. Bigger, nicer, close to school. Ugly color, but the seafoam is growing on me. After the inspection we'll work out the final details.

Friday, April 13, 2007

R.I.P. Kurt Vonnegut. The author who brought us The Slaughterhouse Five, Galapagos, Cat's Cradle, and Breakfast of Champions passed away on Wednesday.

At least they are subpoenaing Roves e-mails. Sink damn you sink.


Monday, April 9, 2007

So, I had to go to the Mega-Lo-Mart the other day because that's were we have our tax-exempt paperwork for the project. I hate the place. Some people get road rage, I get big-box rage. But I did find a couple of things that made me giggle.

1. Jingoistic Energy:

The tag line on the back says "Keeping Americans Strong" and it's got the Pledge of Allegiance with the under god in all caps. The religious right really wants to forget that it wasn't in the pledge until the 1954, and that the writer of the original was a socialist who left his church because it promoted bigotry.

Even better on the energy drink front:

The flavor is "Steven Segal's Asian Experience" There's so many things wrong with that.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Take that...

bitches! It's only the end of March and I've already got my Teva tan started:

There's a reason I live in Texas.

Now this is my kind of diet: The Beer Drinkers Diet.

Just to make your skin crawl a little: The top 10 Big-Brother companies.

So, I'm selling my house. I'm going to buy another one in San Marcos, since I'm there all the time anyways. I hate commuting and I'm never here in Austin. It's going to be weird not being in Austin, but hopefully it will help simplify things for me, and since I'm contemplating the PhD program at Texas State, it will be for more than just a year or so. It goes on the market in a couple of weeks, so I've got to get things cleaned up and looking a little nicer. Then I've got to quick find a house in San Marcos. You get a lot more for the money down there, and the rental market is better down there, so I should be able to rent it out after I'm done, if I'm not staying in the area. But the end of May is going to be nerve wracking, normally house closings are at the end of the month. In addition I've got to start doing my own field work and can't miss that sampling at Lake Amistad. Oh yeah, and I've got class work to do also... Sleep, I'll see you in June.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

I only wish they could have made fun of Bill Gates with this: iRack

Just got back from Amistad. Good trip, but rough. I want our boat back. Hopefully it will be done by next trip. Not the roughest I've seen it, but in the borrowed boat it felt like it was tamping the lungs into the colon. The first day was nice:

The cabins we stay in used to be part of a TB sanitarium, where people with TB used to go to recover in a dry climate. When the lake was filled in 1968, this building was in the floodplain, so NPS didn't let this building be rebuilt. I like old abandoned buildings. The walk to the building was a hike through a bunch of pokey things.

It will be a shame when the project is over and I don't get to stay here anymore.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

It's great when republicans get caught in their hypocrisy

We all know Ann Coulter is a homophobe bitch, and the fact that she wasn't booed off stage when she called John Edwards a "faggot" is sickening, but do you really expect anything else from the conservative right? Closed minded goat fuckers. Because of this I think it is great when they get caught not doing their research. Last summer it was Ted Haggard doing speed with a gay prostitute, now it turns out that their latest poster child for the war is a former gay porn star. My bet it that the conservative right starts tripping over themselves to get away from him. They might get gay on them... Where the hell are we going and why am I in this handbasket?

Friday, March 9, 2007

how do people do it...

I don't see how anyone posts daily. Well, I said it would be irregular. Don't expect fully coherent thoughts. The allergies have been kicking my ass the past week. New sudafed just doesn't work. Give me the stuff they make speed out of. At least that shit works...

Anyways, what have I done? Well a couple of trips to Amistad. We had to use another boat last time because our boat's motor died when being used by another group in the department. I won't say he killed it, but it is the second boat that has died on him. Now he has his own. Our boat does get a lot of hard use, so the motor may have been on its way out. Maybe we are lucky that it didn't die when we were in the middle of Amistad and out of cell phone range.

I'm waiting to hear on a grant that will hopefully fund most of my research. They were supposed to make a decision on funding a few weeks ago, but the budget for USGS has been held up. They keep saying we should know in a week. This is how this process goes. Hopefully soon.

This may be the best thing ever: When robotics meet alcoholism.

So we lost a Gallo over the weekend. E & J Gallo, for all their other faults (Thunderbird, bad jug wine...) did help create the US wine industry. He was 97.

So Scooter Libby got convicted. He's a prick, the Republican/Faux News spinmeisters need to be shot, and he didn't take down Cheney. HOWEVER, he is the fall guy. Cheney is the evil one. Fucking shadow president. In twenty years it will come out that he gave bush the black eye, not the stupid pretzel. The fucking neocons are going to destroy the world. They refuse to see beyond their own massive paychecks. And the fundamentalist ones really want to bring on armageddon so they can have their end of days rapture. Sick fucks.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

I have to start on a sad note. Molly Ivins died today. Her attitude is one of the reasons, that I accepted moving to Texas nine years ago. True Texas liberals are some of the greatest people in the world. Molly Ivins, Bill Hicks, Anne Richards, Jim Hightower... Three of them are dead. Who's stepping up to the plate? Lloyd Doggett? Not outspoken enough. Kinky Friedman? He's the reason we still have a Republican governor, which I am still pissed off about, and doesn't support the separation of church and state enough. (He does have the one show of Austin City Limits that was never broadcast, supposedly because he said some offensive things. I don't know in what way they were offensive) Now if we could just get rid of the asshole conservatives.

So, I'm teaching one A&P lab this semester and my students seem nice, but they don't seem to be listening to my warnings of how much information they have to absorb for this class, and I have my doubts about whether they are even getting the background material. I did my fair share of goofing off during my first couple of years of college, and maybe it was different at UCD, but the amount of information we're asking them to know isn't unreasonable. A lot, but not unfair. The first quiz average was lower than I wanted, and it was all review from basic biology. They get a lab sheet each week, which is what the quiz and practicals are written off of. It is their study sheet. If it's not on there, it's not on the tests. I've already gotten a couple of comments from students wanting me to make the next quiz easier. "Can't you do multiple choice or matching?" They don't want me to write that kind of quiz, because I can make them harder than a fill in the blank. Now I feel old.

I haven't had a chance to do much fact checking, but if you want to see some of the lies in the bible, go here. Now the bible is a good story, but that's it. The new testament was compiled for political purposes, hundreds of years after Jesus lived. There were many other gospels that were left out (or stamped out) because they did things like promote the quest for individual knowledge or hold that women were equal to men. And it's still being used for political purposes... Fucking Constantine.

Have you been following the Scooter Libby trial? I haven't gotten to as much as I'd like, but it's not painting anyone in a good light. I like how the defence is trying to blame the administration. I'm sure that's making some people squirm. Now Bush is getting implicated. Sweet. I need this t-shirt. See more at OneHorseShy. Why do we have to suffer until 2008 with BushCo? I don't want Bush impeached without Cheney going down also, but the whole lot needs to go. Have you seen the similarity between the current rhetoric on Iran and what was said about Iraq? (the transcripts should be up tomorrow on MSNBC) We all know they were lying then. Don't let them get us into another great distraction in Iran. If they had been willing to talk to Iran a few years ago, they would have prevented the current situation. But, they aren't interested in that. It's all part of their plan.... Fuck, now I'm a conspiracy nut. I hate that, but those goatfuckers don't make it easy to resist.

Oh, and if you want to know the moment when your favorite TV show jumped the shark, now you can.

Boston shut down by Aqua Teen Hunger Force posters


Friday, January 26, 2007

Just got back from a few days of doing fieldwork at Lake Amistad. Luckily we mostly missed the rain. We didn't miss the cold. It only rained a little on the first day, but we were sweating bullets on the way out, driving through pouring rain. The rain pretty much stopped once we got there, but high 30's on a lake at 40mph on a boat with no windbreak is fucking cold. The second day was beautiful, but even in the low 50's it's uncomfortable when you are moving... I wish a picture would do justice for Goodenough Springs. This was the third or fourth largest spring in Texas when the reservoir was filled in 1969. Now it is 20m underwater. In the wintertime it still releases enough water to make a boil on the top of the lake. The water from the spring is 68°F, while the lake is significantly colder right now, so the warm water pushes it's way to the surface. This goes away in the summer, when the lake water is warmer than the spring. A picture doesn't show the effect at all... It's cool. I'll leave it at that.

This is just what I need. Christ, if they ever start putting small batch bourbons in these, I'm in trouble. Like I need any more portable bourbon... hic. The flask might bruise my hip, and everyone will think it's an energy gel. Why does Jesse ride slower and fall down more after he has a energy shot? Oh it's a shot alrighty. I get surly when you question me about it....They even market it for biking.

Take something pure and simple like the bicycle and ruin it. This is not a bicycle it belongs in a kinetic sculpture parade. And besides it's a tricycle.

Religious nutcases have too much time on their hands. How about go out and live Jesus's word, by helping people, instead of putting out lists of gay bands? Hypocritical sacks of shit. However, I am interested that both Metallica and TED FUCKING NUGENT made their lists. The Nuge? I dare you to go to his ranch (outside of Waco btw) and tell him that. He's as much of a homophobe as the dumbshit who made the list. And, he really, really, really, likes guns. He really does. Some of the other ones are funny. Does anyone really listen to Frankie Goes To Hollywood anymore? I mean if you are going to post a list of "popular music", you might want to keep it to things that the kids might be listening to, whatever your agenda... Oh, and their list of o.k. bands is really short and includes Cindy Lauper.

Werd... J

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Well it was really more ice/slush tubing. We found a hill by Kristen's house that was fun to slide down. I did manage to protect the beer. Everything has melted off...

Break was effectively extended a week by the ice storm. For those that are in places where ice and snow are regular things, in Texas if more than three flakes fall out of the sky everything shuts down. And you want it to, because you don't want to be driving with those idiots who've never seen ice and think that 70mph is still a reasonable speed on the highway when it is iced.

So I'm back to teaching A&P this semester. I was going to IA, Reservoir Ecology this semester, but no one signed up for the course. That's fine, it would have been nice to be teaching a graduate course, and I think we could have come up with a good class project. I can scare undergrads again. Only one section. The rest of my (lowly paid) time will be continuing work on the Amistad project. Other than that only one class this semester. Aquatic microbial ecology. I'm actually looking forward to it, since that is a bit of a hole in my knowledge. One of the groups of bacteria that the professor studies, are the main group that methylates mercury, although he doesn't look at the mercury aspect of the group.

I'm not into conspiracy theories, and I can poke holes in this all day long, but it is interesting. Was 9/11 an insurance scam? It's long. I hope not, because if it is, we're a lot more fucked than I'd like to hope we are. Not that we aren't being fucked by Bush & Co. already, but I refuse to believe that they really are that evil. I know that at EVERY step they have made wrong, self-serving, pigheaded decisions. Finally, even his own party is starting to distance themselves from the insanity. I'm more than a little tired of politicians and pundits refusing to acknowledge that it was the US that destabilized Iraq. Yeah, Saddam was a jackass. He was horrible to his own people. But he wasn't a threat to us. Never was going to be. If Shrub really wanted to effect the region, we would have stopped at Afghanistan, and would concentrate on that like we did Japan and Germany. If we could have taken the 10+ years to show that peoples lives were getting better in Afghanistan, people would start seeing through the fundamentalist lies. All the last 6 years have done is give fundamentalist Muslims an imperialist enemy to hate. At every step along the way, we play into their rhetoric, and do exactly what gets them more converts. The current Iraqi government is a sham. It's obvious that it is a puppet government. I hope that people in this country start seeing through the neo-con views, and begin to see that Bush & Co. are just as much fundamentalists as those in the middle east. Fundamentalism is wrong. The flavor doesn't matter. Fundamentalism breeds fascism.

So, if you follow cycling at all, the anti-doping crusaders are looking more and more rediculous. Now the French are trying to bust another for his asthma medicine. I still think they need to come up with the unlimited class. If you get caught doping, you get bumped into it permanently. I don't support doping, and I'm sure there are cyclists who do cheat, but I do think cycling has been unfairly targeted. I think track, baseball, football, soccer, etc. are all at least as dirty, if not more-so, but the press (at least the press I follow) concentrates on cycling. I'm not going to blindly support Lance, Floyd, Tyler, Jan, Ivan, or any of the others, but come on. The French are just pissy, since they haven't had a contender in the Tour for years. It wouldn't suprise me if it comes out that Floyd was framed. Oparacion Puerto is one of the most bungled investigations ever. I think that it is wrong that a lot of careers were derailed on speculation. Bust people if you have proof. Just because an athlete may have talked to a certain doctor is not reason to suspend them.

anyways, rant off for today....


Tuesday, January 16, 2007

It's rare, but it does snow sometimes in Texas. It's funny how when you don't deal with snow all the time, it makes people happy. I don't know how much will stick, probably not much or for long. I think it's supposed to warm up in a day or two. I think I must go skiing behind a truck....

Tuesday, January 9, 2007

Went caving over the weekend. It seems like we've been working on the Blowing Sink project for years. Oh, right, it has been two years. I want to go in a different cave. For those that don't know, Blowing Sink is a cave that goes down to the Edwards Aquifer, and this is a project Bev has been leading. We've been working on stabilizing a passage so that the City of Austin can get better and safer access for scientists to study the aquifer. Also, the fire department wants to use the cave as a training cave for their cave rescue program. It's in a less consolidated formation, and the passage we are working on was succeptible to collapse. We've poured approximately 2000lbs of concrete in the passage. Each pour consists of about 3-4 trips of hauling equipment, building forms, and finally mixing concrete in small buckets to pour into the forms. The pic below is from a previous trip. That's Mark from the city on the left, Nathan in the front, Bev on the Right. I forget who is in the back. This is about 90ft underground. Yes, this is what I do. (Well when I can)

This is a pic that my friend Trevor took. I like it:

The new pit transportation for your next lawnmower race: Cruzin Cooler
Oh yeah, we all need one. You can even get a trailer for it (Thanks Naomi).

This is probably the calmest I've ever seen Lake Amistad (The reservoir where I do my fieldwork, on the border between Texas and Mexico. Thats Texas on the left and Mexico on the right):
Glass all day. Days like this, fieldwork is easy. I know there will be payback... Next time the waves will be crashing over the bow.