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#161 Beelzebuddy

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Posted 23 August 2019 - 04:28 PM

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Fear Sells!

Cui bono?

"The real problem of humanity is the following: we have paleolithic emotions; medieval institutions; and god-like technology." - EO Wilson.

"Hell is truth seen too late" - T Hobbes

#162 LFC

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Posted 23 August 2019 - 05:17 PM

 Beelzebuddy, on 23 August 2019 - 04:28 PM, said:

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I'm lost. Why did you post a picture of Mar a Lago with no context?
" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#163 Rich T Bikkies

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Posted 24 August 2019 - 03:47 AM

 LFC, on 23 August 2019 - 05:17 PM, said:

I'm lost. Why did you post a picture of Mar a Lago with no context?

I don't think Mar-a-Lago should have a context. I don't think Trump or anything to do with him should have a context. The White House is his context. Does that seem good to you?
Reality is a hallucination caused by alcohol deprivation.

Only Satan can rebuke sin. The righteous don't know enough.

God is not dead. He was merely voted out of office.

You can do anything with anybody if you just save them the trouble of thinking.

#164 Beelzebuddy

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Posted 03 September 2019 - 03:43 PM

Posted Image
Fear Sells!

Cui bono?

"The real problem of humanity is the following: we have paleolithic emotions; medieval institutions; and god-like technology." - EO Wilson.

"Hell is truth seen too late" - T Hobbes

#165 AnBr

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Posted 03 September 2019 - 11:18 PM

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“One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we've been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It's simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”

— Carl Sagan


Pray for Trump: Psalm 109:8

"Science is more than a body of knowledge; it is a way of thinking. I have a foreboding of an America in my children's or grandchildren's time - when the United States is a service and information economy; when nearly all the key manufacturing industries have slipped away to other countries; when awesome technological powers arc in the hands of a very few, and no one representing the public interest can even grasp the issues; when the people have lost the ability to set their own agendas or knowledgeably question those in authority; when, clutching our crystals and nervously consulting our horoscopes, our critical faculties in decline, unable to distinguish between what feels good and what's true, we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition and darkness.

— Carl Sagan
The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark
1995


“As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”

— H.L. Mencken
On Politics: A Carnival of Buncombe


“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.”

— Franklin Delano Roosevelt
Second inaugural address January, 1937

#166 LFC

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Posted 06 September 2019 - 03:19 PM

Of course there are many good applications of this drone surveillance technology but we all know it will never be limited to just those.

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“Someday, most major developed cities in the world will live under the unblinking gaze of some form of wide-area surveillance,” writes Arthur Holland Michel in Eyes in the Sky, a startling, disturbing, and deeply reported account of the powerful new technologies that promise safety and imperil privacy on an unprecedented scale.

Imagine an aerial video camera with the power to spot an object six inches wide from an altitude of 25,000 feet in a frame twice the width of Manhattan. Actually, you don’t need to imagine it. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) developed the ARGUS camera a decade ago with those capabilities. In 2014, ten were deployed in Afghanistan on Reaper drones, in a covert program known as Gorgon Stare.

In Greek mythology, the Gorgons were underworld monsters whose rigid, unblinking stare were their most frightening feature. The most famous Gorgon, the snake-haired Medusa, turned people to stone with just a glance. In real life, “wide-area motion imagery,” known as WAMI, can record everything that happens on a battlefield, in a conflict zone, or within a city neighborhood, as well as zero in on any target it chooses.

Using a system of 368 compact 5-million-pixel cameras to capture images of about 1.8 billion pixels, the Gorgon Stare technology enables the U.S. military, and, increasingly, police departments, to surveil vast areas from the safety of the skies. If an enemy attack (or a street crime) is detected, the administrators of the system can rewind the video and see where the perpetrators came from and where they went. Early adopters called it “combat TiVo.”

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#167 Bact PhD

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Posted 13 September 2019 - 08:39 PM

The thoroughbred racing community is in a bit of a lather (couldn’t resist!) over some possibly serious doping allegations against one of its “stars” and what look awfully like attempts to cover the whole thing up. Of course, said “star” denies the whole thing [1]:

http://www.nbcnews.c...amp/ncna1052881

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Justify, the colt who in 2018 became one of only 13 horses to win the Triple Crown, reportedly failed a drug test that should have disqualified him from racing's most revered event, according to a New York Times report Wednesday.

[snip]

Rather than disqualifying the colt or its trainer, Bob Baffert, the California Horse Racing Board took more than a month to confirm the test, according to the Times.

Baffert claims the feed was contaminated with a natural source of the drug, causing the positive test; analysts call BS.

I looked this info up re the drug. Scopolamine is a common anti-nausea drug in humans; I had no idea of the natural source of the compound, or its connection to racing. Long story short, I concur with the analysts calling BS.

https://www.ncbi.nlm...ubmed/24440440/

[1] So did some cyclist named Armstrong, for what seemed like forever...


Politics these days is show business. Elections are Dancing with the Stars with consequences. ~Rue Bella

(About fame) Living for likes, shares and follows is a form of validation. The question is whether it is also the source of our self esteem. If it is, we’re screwed. And, culturally, it seems as if it’s become more and more our shared value. ... Meringue is no longer a sweet and pretty topping but the body itself. ~Charles Perez

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be." --Thomas Jefferson to Charles Yancey, 1816. ME 14:384, via LFC, 12/1/2016

Competent people go in one of a few directions. But incompetence is infinite. ~David Brooks, NY Times

#168 LFC

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 02:25 PM

This piece on why so many new cancer treatments fail sounds like it's right up Bact PhD's alley.

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The new study, published in Science Translational Medicine, used CRISPR — the latest and most precise gene-editing tool available — to examine whether 10 different drugs worked as researchers projected. In every case, the researchers found that they didn’t.

When the paper’s authors removed the genes from the genomes of cancer cells that were supposed to be essential for cancer growth, the cells continued to grow. And when they applied the medicines — each targeting one of six genes — to the newly removed genes, the drugs killed the cancer cells anyway. In other words, even when the supposed target of the therapies was fully deleted, the drugs worked.

This suggests it’s possible that a big driver of cancer-drug failures in clinical studies is that the drugs don’t actually work as drug developers intended.

“I hope this paper will help people see the need to raise to bar in terms of how we choose and validate cancer drug targets,” said William George Kaelin, a Harvard University professor of medicine who was not involved in the study.

The study should also be a wake-up call for drug developers: “[They] should make sure their drugs stop working if the target protein has been genetically removed,” said Nathanael Gray, a Dana-Farber Cancer Institute cancer biologist, who was also independent of the research.

The finding is definitely fascinating. But so is the story of why the researchers decided to run the study in the first place and use the latest gene-editing technology to reanalyze, and possibly debunk, previous findings in cancer clinical studies.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#169 Bact PhD

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 08:56 PM

VERY interesting piece. I will concede, I’m not up to speed on these targeted cancer therapies, although I do have rudimentary knowledge about CRISPR.

That said, I can’t say I’m shocked by the so-far disappointing results with this targeted approach.

The concluding paragraph really crystallizes one significant issue plaguing science as it’s carried out today. We do our utmost to bury the negative and can’t be bothered to troubleshoot enough to keep our colleagues from needing to re-invent the wheel.

Quote

Either way, he and his colleagues hope the research inspires more analyses into why so many cancer drugs don’t help patients. “Research funding agencies are very interested in finding the next cure,” Sheltzer argued, “and they aren’t excited about this research into reproducibility and why some drugs fail.” If we want to accelerate the quest for effective, new treatments, maybe they should be.

Politics these days is show business. Elections are Dancing with the Stars with consequences. ~Rue Bella

(About fame) Living for likes, shares and follows is a form of validation. The question is whether it is also the source of our self esteem. If it is, we’re screwed. And, culturally, it seems as if it’s become more and more our shared value. ... Meringue is no longer a sweet and pretty topping but the body itself. ~Charles Perez

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be." --Thomas Jefferson to Charles Yancey, 1816. ME 14:384, via LFC, 12/1/2016

Competent people go in one of a few directions. But incompetence is infinite. ~David Brooks, NY Times

#170 LFC

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 09:14 AM

Probably less than 10 miles from where I live. I'm so proud of my state some times.

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A Pennsylvania man faces federal charges for allegedly using a drone to drop explosives on his ex-girlfriend’s home.

Jason Muzzicato, 43, was arrested in June, initially indicted by a grand jury with possessing unregistered firearms despite a domestic violence protection order from his ex-girlfriend. A superseding indictment filed earlier this month added even more potential prison time due to IEDs and guns allegedly found in his home.

He was also allegedly using meth and allegedly operating the drone without registering it with the FAA, according to the new indictment.

Though prosecutors haven’t charged Muzzicato with several detonations that occurred around Washington Township, they did accuse him in court this week of using the drones to drop the explosives, The Morning Call reported Monday.

His attorney John Waldron noted that Muzzicato has denied dropping explosives using a drone.

“I don’t have any conclusive evidence at this point in time about that specific allegation,” he told TPM in a phone interview Wednesday, noting Muzzicato has already denied using the drones that way to the FBI. “I’m waiting for any of that evidence to come once they forensically examine the computers.”

Muzzicato has pleaded not guilty to the charges against him, but Waldron told several reporters this week that he was exploring a plea deal with prosecutors.

“In all honestly, it’s not disputed that he had a [Protection From Abuse order] and weapons were found in his home, so it’s just a matter of what we can, maybe, come to an agreement with,” Waldron told TPM.

“It does not take much imagination to conjure up the enormous harm that can result from the combination of illegal firearms, explosives, and drone aircrafts,” U.S. Attorney William McSwain said in a statement earlier this month. “Adding methamphetamine and a disregard of court orders to the mix only serves to heighten the risk. Here the defendant’s alleged behavior violated the law and threatened public safety.”

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#171 LFC

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 12:34 PM

The history of Area 51. This blew me away (mostly the time to development) and explains why it's called the "birthplace of overhead espionage."

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Two aircrafts most exemplify the important work done at Area 51.

The first is the U-2 spy plane, which helped the US keep an eye on the growing nuclear threat out of the Soviet Union.

The Soviets conducted their first atomic bomb test in 1949 and started to intercept aircraft heading toward its borders in part to keep that program secret. That made it nearly impossible for the US to get an overhead view of what was going on inside the country, especially since America still didn’t have satellites that could offer a clear picture.

In 1953, the Air Force began looking for a plane that could fly so high it could avoid detection and anti-aircraft missiles, about 70,000 feet in the air, and travel long-enough distances — 3,000 miles or so — without needing to refuel. Oh, and it needed to carry 700 pounds’ worth of cameras on it that could provide good resolution of the land below.

Eisenhower directed a covert program through the CIA, known as “Project Aquatone” to build such an aircraft. The defense contractor Lockheed Martin designed and built one, the U-2, in just eight months. Flight tests then began at Area 51 on August 1, 1955, and the program had a budget of around $22 million, which in today’s money would be about $207 million. Such funds and presidential backing allowed engineers and others to work out many of the initial kinks.

They would do so, turning the U-2 into one of the most important planes in US intelligence and military history. On a July 4, 1956 mission, for example, Hervey Stockman flew the U-2 deep into Soviet territory. The photos he took revealed that the country was actually not as militarily advanced as the nation’s leadership at the time claimed, giving the US the knowledge that it wasn’t so behind the Soviet Union in military strength.

But on May 1, 1960, a U-2 plane was shot down over Soviet airspace. The pilot, Gary Powers, and plane were both recovered, forcing the US to admit it was spying. That led the government, particularly the Air Force, to put pressure on Lockheed Martin to build a plane in only 20 months that couldn’t be brought down.

That eventually led to the development of the SR-71 Blackbird, which began flight testing on December 22, 1964. It would feature so many new, high-tech equipment that aircraft designer Kelly Johnson said “everything had to be invented. Everything.” Labeled by many as the “perfect spy plane,” it was so capable that it could fly about 80,000 feet high at a speed of over 2,100 miles per hour — too high and too fast for enemies to take out of the sky.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer





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