Saturday, August 31, 2013

Syria - Be Very Afraid


BRT doesn't discuss politics to any great extent but when it comes to Syria and the potential for catastrophic disaster by committing unilateral military action against a country who poses no threat to the US requires that something must be said and Putin does this in very direct fashion by demanding absolute proof as to who actually gassed the Syrian civilians on August 21, 2013. Additionally, Putin's response is also a wake up call to Obama as this unnecessary and very dangerous gamesmanship he is playing regarding Russia, who's vital national interest is irrevocably connected to Syria, is not Libya, Iraq or Afghanistan by any stretch of the imagination. 


To get a perspective of why Syria is a tar baby from hell, click here.
Click here to see how the Great Game is being played in Syria.
Click here to see how Syrian intel is being messaged.
Last but not least, click here for a point by point rebuttal to the government's push for war.

Addendum: Impeachment: Congress Fires Opening Shot Across Obama’s Bow.

Text from letter of Rep. Scott Regall (R, VA) to Pres. Obama
Signed by 116 Reps, including 18 Democrats

“We strongly urge you to consult and receive authorization from Congress before ordering the use of U.S. military force in Syria. Your responsibility to do so is prescribed in the Constitution and the War Powers Resolution of 1973.

“While the Founders wisely gave the Office of the President the authority to act in emergencies, they foresaw the need to ensure public debate – and the active engagement of Congress – prior to committing U.S. military assets. Engaging our military in Syria when no direct threat to the United States exists and without prior congressional authorization would violate the separation of powers that is clearly delineated in the Constitution.”

Samsara - A Film for the Ages


Two years ago, BRT showed the preview of Samsara, an absolutely astounding film depicting the state of humanity circa 2011. YouTube now has Ron Fricke's master work on line.
Take the time to see this, you will be amazed. - Robert E. 

Friday, August 30, 2013

52.6


$52.6 billion = the amount of money spent by our government to spy on us. 
Not bad for a years's worth of work (2013) if you ask me. 

Snowden strikes again.


Chanticleer



What is quality? Can it be quantified, can it be defined or is it a notion requiring one to have the prerequisite intelligence, education and empathy to truly understand this most elusive concept known as quality. To this end, Chanticleer represents quality, quality in terms of how gardens should connect with nature, something organic, beautiful and inviting to experience, something this video hopefully captured during a walk through this truly enchanted place. Enjoy.

To learn more about quality, Robert Pirsig's Lila is a good place to start.


Friday, August 23, 2013

Quantum Computers Explained


Quantum computers, the tech that not only presages hardware faster then one can possibly imagine is also a tech able to mirror reality itself. Check out PHD's terrific piece showing how these insane systems work. You will be amazed.


Wednesday, August 21, 2013

A never-ending horror show


Fukushima, the nuclear disaster from hell, is 

escalating once again.

Kyodo reports that 300 tons of radioactive water have leaked from a 1,000 ton tank at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. That led Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority to consider raising the incident from a Level 1 nuclear event to a Level 3 (a “serious incident” with radioactive exposure 10 times the limit for workers) on the International Nuclear Event Scale, the first time an incident has been serious enough to be reported on the INES scale. The most extreme nuclear events on the scale are considered Level 7, a level only reached by Fukushima in 2011 and Chernobyl.

To see how this disaster happened requires only a glimpse into the enormous power of the tsunami that overwhelmed one of the largest nuclear facilities in the world. With this in mind, check out the latest news regarding contaminated water and how it's spilling into the Pacific, a situation not good by any stretch of the imagination.

The Cupboard's Getting Empty



Now that we know what overshoot means, we can now examine the ecological limits of planet earth.




Sound familiar? Overshoot Day has been advancing approximately three days a year yet is it? When BRT posted Overshoot on Sunday, September 25, 2011, the day was September 27. It's now August 20 so the 3 days per year estimate has been past by and then some. From this perspective, it seems mankind is committing slow motion suicide by plundering the planet for profit and keeping the status quo in power at all costs, something disastrous from the get go but we already know that, right?

Check out the video below, needless to say, it makes one think about what the hell are we doing to the place "we call home."




Addendum: Check out Climate Change 2007 to learn why this data should alarm every thinking person on the planet regarding what the future portends if we do nothing about it.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Persistence


Persistence and patience are the two essentials nature's creatures live by in making a living in an unforgiving yet beautiful place called reality. Enjoy and...check out the convergent evolution of the hawk-moth and hummers. Interesting to say the least.

Friday, August 16, 2013

HC & IT - Where complexity rules


Yours truly is working on a project with direct relevance to healthcare, the incredibly complex and inefficient system America is burdened with, something IT, if properly applied, can help but only if a restart is done at fundamental levels to move HC into the 21st century where competition rules and the software in question is open sourced and able to scale, using the net as prime enabler. This terrific graphic shows the inherent complexity of healthcare and how IT intersects with it. Check it out, it's worth the time it takes to view this graphic in depth in order to better understand a system needing a reset and then some.

Seen below is the info-graphic depicting how Big Data intersects with HC. Worthwhile to the max.



Thursday, August 15, 2013

It Can Wait



A must see about why Texting can kill. Werner Herzog's heartfelt and powerful documentary should be mandatory viewing in high schools and college to get young drivers wise to the fact Texting can kill.

The Top 40


Yours truly loves maps, especially ones showing really interesting factoids like the gems seen in Twistedsifter.com. Check out the 40 on their site and be amazed at how these top picks will help you "make sense of the world". :)

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

It doesn't matter...


If you can stand it, check out this masterpiece of The Hammer doing dance steps in Dancing With The Stars circa 2009, something to behold considering just how powerful and corrupt  Tom DeLay truly was in his heyday as GOP House Majority Leader from 2003 - 2005 but he's not alone, not by a long shot as seen in a polemic by Frank Rich titled The Stench on the Potomac

This crowd is as intractable as it is incorrigible. There are no term limits, because Washington amnesia perennially wipes the slate clean. No one seems to remember anymore the furor kicked off by a 1998 Post "Style"-section piece in which Beltway grandees like David Broder and Cokie Roberts vented to Sally Quinn about how the impeached president had trashed their pristine city. "Regardless of whether his fortunes improve," Quinn concluded, "Bill Clinton has essentially lost the Washington Establishment for good." Well, that was then, and this is now. As This Town makes clear, these days Clinton alumni are the Washington Establishment, whether in the Obama administration or on K Street, and they can hardly wait for the greater dividends that will accrue should the former First Couple be restored to the White House in 2016. If that happens, Leibovich will not have to write a sequel, because it is already writing itself.

Read it and weep  because in the end, it doesn't matter... , ever.

Sunday, August 04, 2013

On Reaching 1100


1100, to yours truly, is a large number, particularly when it comes to articles written for BRT. It astounds me to no end that this blog contains this much material, hopefully most of which is relevant and has value. One can only hope.

The 1000th article, titled 1000 & Counting,  was reached on Jan 10, 2013 with emphasis given to quality of thought and the importance of Homer, the blind poet who started it all for aspiring writers willing to expose their thoughts to the public in a form able to be understood by anyone who had the skill set to do so. With this in mind, what has transpired in the 8 short months BRT went from article 1000 to post 1100?
  • For starters, Orwell lives. Black white, double think and newspeak reign supreme in the land of the free as seen by the treatment of whistle blowers being equated to traitors, thanks to Obama and Holder, even though the definition of espionage cannot be applied to what Snowden, Ellsberg and Manning did in showing us how the government systematically lied to us in areas of policy that impacts us all. 
  • Global Warming, a reality accepted by all, save for flat earthers,  grows ever more ominous as we continue to burn fossil fuels at ever increasing rates even though nations like Germany move ahead of us in terms of leveraging renewables to keep their nation running. 
  • Financialization, or the art of printing and manipulating money to feed the stock market, has replaced innovation as the "new" way to achieve financial success, a process equivalent to the game of musical chairs, where money, back by nothing and created from nothing, moves about at ever increasing speeds to temporarily satisfy immediate needs with the vain hope the music never stops though it inevitably will due to the ever increaseing cost of energy, the engine that kept the party going until now.
  • Surveillance 24/7, something techies like myself have suspected all along, has been verified to be real at levels approaching disbelief, something most disquieting as surveillance is the first step to the creation of a police state, a condition this country is rapidly moving toward as seen by the militarization of the police, the increased control of the press via government wiretaps, the unprecedented concentration of power by the banks and corporations over government and the unprecedented attacks on whistle blowers of all types. 
  • States like PA are decreasing education budgets while building new prisons because prison building is a for profit system requiring ever larger prison populations in order for it to thrive, something that will definitely occur as the populace in question becomes less educated and must resort to crime in order to survive in a society increasingly driven by science and technology.
  • Drug policy stupidity regarding the delayed legalization of pot continues on even though the so called drug war is our personal Vietnam and we've lost but the DEA and other law enforcement entities march on because that's where the money is and don't you forget it. On the local side, police want pot legalized in order to go after real criminals, not those charged with a victimless crime by getting toasted on a plant man has smoked for over 10,000 years.
  • The art of stupidity and inefficiency of governance continues unabated with politicos spouting off policy initiatives that boggle the mind in terms of just how out of touch they and the powers at be are in terms of what is truly happening in America and to the world as a whole. The disparity of wealth is the greatest it's ever been and where the inequity stops, no one knows. Pensions are going the way of the dodo and banksters move ever closer to getting our social security as this is the only remnant of wealth America has left.
  • Healthcare, don't even go there as the cost of getting anything of significance done, costs more in this county then in any other nation in the world. Obamacare is but a weak start to a system needing a reset and then some.
  • Science & technology continue to advance in spite of attacks by religious fanatics of all stripes. Quantum computing, artificial photosynthesis and the ability to manipulate stem cells to create organs in the near future to save lives are examples of research that could transform society in ways unimagined just a few years ago.
  • The demand for excellence is never stated in this country because learning something new is difficult, requiring sacrifice in order to become good. Intellectual prowess is also frowned upon because not everyone is smart, something not acceptable in this age of bloviators even though society itself needs people with brains to get the job done due to the inherent complexities of an environment dependent on science and tech in order to function.
  • People are now demanding to know what foods are GMO and what are not because the environment and our health may depend on it. Needless to say, Monsanto and significant others are not happy about this. This also applies to water and the right to having unfettered access to it, something Nestle wants to, in effect, eliminate as it continues to buy up water rights in places all over the world in order to control access and generate enormous profits to the one essential element on which all life on this planet depends.
  • Fracking and the XL pipeline are also being questioned. PA wants a moratorium on fracking to ascertain heath risks while opposition to Keystone is increasing at exponential rates given just how dirty and polluting the tar sands product truly is. 
  • Loser pays, the cessation of gerrymandering, the right to referendum and enactment of Amendment 28 are not happening, initiatives that need to happen if we are to take back control of this country.
  • People are beginning to wake up and demand change. The question to ask is, can we make it happen before it's too late. As per many posts in BRT, the clock is ticking and we are running out of time.
The image above is the Earth, Moon and Sun as seen from Cassini as I feel it's important to get a true sense of perspective as to where we really stand in this part of a vast, unknowable reality in which we inhabit, something we really need to think about if we want to succeed as a viable species on a tiny speck of real estate that, as Carl Sagan once said, "we call Home".