Saturday, July 31, 2004
View Thread "Water Well Drilling Accidents or near misses"
Google Groups: From: Alex Terrell (
Subject: Re: Water Well Drilling Accidents or near misses

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Date: 2004-07-30 02:38:26 PST (RH tOWNSEND) wrote in message news:<>...
> I am in litigation support. I have a project that I hope someone or
> everyone on this list might be able to help me since you have
> apparently been involved with water well drilling equipment or
> involved in the industry. I am interested in any incident at anytime
> since 1970 thru current. I am searching for those that were injured or
> almost injured because of a falling or flying object. I am seeking
> knowledge of incidents wherein injury has been suffered by anyone of a
> water drilling crew member by a falling object even through to the
> current time. I am also interested in reports of near misses as well.
> Please feel free to call me at 1.800.308.7716 ext 4010.
> Robert Townsend, CLI

Falling objects are not a major risk on NEO opeartions, though I
suspect that objects with large inertia will need to be handled with
care. Probabley more dangerous is dismemberment from crew straying
into particle beam from the VASIMR units. This happens specifically to
those in litigation support, but that is entirely coincidental.

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Message 5 in thread
From: Rusty B (
Subject: Re: Water Well Drilling Accidents or near misses

View this article only
Date: 2004-07-30 13:38:08 PST (RH tOWNSEND) wrote in message news:<>...
> I am in litigation support. I have a project that I hope someone or
> everyone on this list might be able to help me since you have
> apparently been involved with water well drilling equipment or
> involved in the industry. I am interested in any incident at anytime
> since 1970 thru current.

Well David Scott got some really badly bruised fingernails while drilling
on the moon in 1971 during Apollo 15. But it wasn't for water.


-Rusty Barton

Woman hospitalized after run-in with whale tail
CBC News:
HAPPY VALLEY-GOOSE BAY - A woman from Labrador was in hospital on Tuesday, recovering from face and head injuries she suffered when a whale whacked her boat with its tail.

On Sunday, Brenda Hancock was taking an evening cruise on Forteau Bay with her husband Regg and another couple when a whale surfaced, flipped its large black tail out of the water and struck the Hancocks' brand-new boat.
The blow knocked out the windshield and struck Hancock on the head, causing minor injuries.
No one else on board was injured.
'My wife has this terrific fear of whales and every time you go near a boat she is always talking about 'Don't go near whales,'' Regg Hancock says.

'I used to always laugh at that and say, 'There is no way a whale will come near a boat.' Well, she proved me wrong.'
Brenda Hancock is recovering from her injuries at Charles S. Curtis Memorial Hospital in St. Anthony."

Friday, July 30, 2004
Cat Litter
Radioactive Consumer Products: "For fun, I measured the radionuclide activities in one sample of cat litter. The results were as follows: 4 picocuries per gram (pCi/g) for members of the uranium series, 3 pCi/g for members of the thorium series, and 8 pCi/g of potassium-40.

At these concentrations the exposure rate at six inches above a box of cat litter would be approximately 0.1 micro roentgen per hour (uR/hr) above background. Since cats don't spend a lot of time in the litter box (you never see them taking along something to read when they are heading that way), the radiation exposure is probably minimal.

I've seen varying estimates of the amount of cat litter sold in the US, but for the sake of the calculation, lets assume 4 billion pounds per year. If true, this means that approximately 50,000 pounds of uranium and 120,000 pounds of thorium are purchased in the form of cat litter each year by the American consumer."

Thursday, July 29, 2004
Props to The Carter Family
EFF: Deep Links:
Turns out Woody Guthrie lifted the melody of 'This Land is Your Land' essentially note-for-note from 'When the World's on Fire,' a song recorded by country/bluegrass legends, The Carter Family, ten years before Guthrie wrote his classic song. Here's a short snippet (380k mp3) of the song (the song can be found on the box set, The Carter Family: 1927-34). You don't need to be a musicologist to hear what we're talking about.

Now we've got nothing against Woody's borrowing. In fact, it's a part of the 'folk process' that Woody himself championed. I can't imagine that The Carter Family minded.

But in the letter threatening copyright litigation over JibJab's animated political parody, 'This Land,' Ludlow's lawyer goes out of his way to attack JibJab for copying 'the entire melody, harmony, rhythm and structure of the [sic] Mr. Guthrie's song.'

Er, sorry there Ludlow, but actually, the entire melody, harmony, rhythm, and structure of 'This Land is Your Land' doesn't belong to you. And I'd like to think Mr. Guthrie would never have claimed credit for them, if he were still alive to ask.

Posted by Fred von Lohmann at 09:04 AM | Permalink | Technorati"

Monday, July 26, 2004
The Malaria Clock
A Geen Legacy Of Death:
In April 1972, after seven months of testimony, EPA Administrative Law Judge Edmund Sweeney stated that “DDT is not a carcinogenic hazard to man. ... The uses of DDT under the regulations involved here do not have a deleterious effect on freshwater fish, estuarine organisms, wild birds, or other wildlife. ... The evidence in this proceeding supports the conclusion that there is a present need for the essential uses of DDT.”*

Two months later, EPA head [and Environmental Defense Fund member/fundraiser] William Ruckelshaus - who had never attended a single day’s session in the seven months of EPA hearings, and who admittedly had not even read the transcript of the hearings - overturned Judge Sweeney’s decision. Ruckelshaus declared that DDT was a “potential human carcinogen” and banned it for virtually all uses.**

Since Ruckelshaus arbitrarily and capriciously banned DDT, an estimated 12,836,229,417 cases of malaria have caused immense suffering and poverty in the developing world.***"

Blind are being led by the blind
Telegraph: "Scientists investigating the health of guide dogs have made an alarming discovery: sometimes the blind are leading the blind.

According to a new study, at least one in 10 working guide dogs is seriously short-sighted. Some of the so-called seeing dogs have such poor vision that they would be prescribed glasses if they were human, researchers found."

Friday, July 23, 2004
"My Beef With Big Media"
by Ted Turner
....Today, media companies are more concentrated than at any time over the past 40 years, thanks to a continual loosening of ownership rules by Washington. The media giants now own not only broadcast networks and local stations; they also own the cable companies that pipe in the signals of their competitors and the studios that produce most of the programming. To get a flavor of how consolidated the industry has become, consider this: In 1990, the major broadcast networks--ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox--fully or partially owned just 12.5 percent of the new series they aired. By 2000, it was 56.3 percent. Just two years later, it had surged to 77.5 percent.

In this environment, most independent media firms either get gobbled up by one of the big companies or driven out of business altogether. Yet instead of balancing the rules to give independent broadcasters a fair chance in the market, Washington continues to tilt the playing field to favor the biggest players. Last summer, the FCC passed another round of sweeping pro-consolidation rules that, among other things, further raised the cap on the number of TV stations a company can own.

In the media, as in any industry, big corporations play a vital role, but so do small, emerging ones. When you lose small businesses, you lose big ideas. People who own their own businesses are their own bosses. They are independent thinkers. They know they can't compete by imitating the big guys--they have to innovate, so they're less obsessed with earnings than they are with ideas. They are quicker to seize on new technologies and new product ideas. They steal market share from the big companies, spurring them to adopt new approaches. This process promotes competition, which leads to higher product and service quality, more jobs, and greater wealth. It's called capitalism.

But without the proper rules, healthy capitalist markets turn into sluggish oligopolies, and that is what's happening in media today. Large corporations are more profit-focused and risk-averse. They often kill local programming because it's expensive, and they push national programming because it's cheap--even if their decisions run counter to local interests and community values.......

Tuesday, July 13, 2004
Book Your Orbital Vacations Now!
SciScoop: by rickyjames on Fri Jul 9th, 2004 at 04:49:59 PM PST

....As for the whole subject of reboost, somewhere inside NASA is a very interesting videotape taken at the 1992 or 1993 Houston Critical Design Review that has me arguing with a VP-level guy at what was then McDonnell Douglas about Space Station reboost. I present some facts about the amount of water generated by the Shuttle fuel cells during station docking, and state my belief and calculations that plumbing that water over to space station for use as electric resistojet reboost mass makes a lot more sense than letting that water deorbit with the shuttle and ultimately get drained onto the runway at Kennedy after being launched to orbit at $10,000 per pound. I outlined a whole scenerio we (Boeing) had worked out where once every 90 days a large chunk of the station's power would be diverted to reboost for a few weeks using water as the reaction mass for resistojets. I then note that Macdac had just received a $50 million contract from NASA Johnson to build a hydrazine carrier system for space station reboost fuel, which was insane - not only did it meen HUGE new cuts into the up-trip logistics mass budget (managed at that time by Boeing) in addition to the Shuttle fuel cell reactants that was going anyway, but hydrazine exhaust frost was inevitably going to build up in shadowed areas of the station and be a HUGE safety problem when it was accidentally rubbed against and brought back into the airlock by EVA. I stated that NASA couldn't possibly be so foolish as to let a $50 mil contract to MacDac without doing a trade study with safe, economical water resistojets, could they, so could I please see a copy of the engineering study that showed hydrazine was the safe and economical way to go over shuttle fuel cell water? The Macdac VP stutters, says the decision has been made to go with hydrazine (so much for DESIGN REVIEW), and ends the MacDac Q&A session.

Everybody in the auditorium knew I had made my point all too well. What can I say, the fix was in by the JSC Mafia. Space station was a VERY disillusioning experience for me...

Saturday, July 10, 2004
United States Patent: 6,758,061
Nipple hugger jewelry system: A wire is fabricated of a semi-rigid material. The wire may be bent by a user. At least three primary sections are formed. A nipple reception circle is located between the primary sections. The circle has a center. Each primary section extends radially outwardly from the center of the circle. A pair of end sections are formed. Two stem sections extend radially from the circle. An interior point is formed. An exterior point is formed. The end sections and the stem sections are oriented in a common plane prior to use. The end and stem sections are movable to an orientation with the end sections overlapped into a locking relationship when the circle encompasses the nipple of a user. The interiors of the primary sections are in holding contact adjacent to at least three spaced points around the nipple of the user.

1. A nipple hugger jewelry system for adorning a breast of a user in a non-piercing manner comprising, in combination:

a wire fabricated of a silver based alloy having a diameter of about 0.030 inches plus or minus 10 percent whereby the wire may be readily bent by a user applying a deforming force by hand and whereby the bent wire will retain its shape after the removal of the deforming force;

a plurality of primary pedal sections, preferably five pedal sections, formed from the wire with a nipple reception circle located between the pedal sections and with the circle having a center, each pedal section extending radially outwardly from the center of the circle and formed with an essentially semi-circular exterior with a radius of curvature of about 0.250 inches, each pedal section formed with an essentially semi-circular interior with a radius of curvature of about 0.094 inches, the exterior of each pedal being located about 1.5 inches from the center of the circle and the interior of each pedal section being located about 0.250 inch from the center of the circle;

a pair of end sections formed from the wire, each end section being in a spiral shape; and

two essentially straight stem sections, each stem section extending radially from the circle with an interior point about 0.250 inches from the center of the circle formed as extensions of adjacent pedal sections and with an exterior point about 0.500 inch from the center of the circle formed as extensions of the end sections, the pedal sections and the end sections and the stem sections lying oriented in a common plane prior to use but movable to an orientation with the end sections overlapped into a locking relationship when the circle encompasses the nipple of a user with the interiors of the pedal sections in holding contact at five spaced points around the nipple of the user.

Sunday, July 04, 2004
The Gadflyer
Political Aims by Amy Elizabeth Sullivan: "Last night I hung out with some former Daschle office friends who are heading up the office of newly elected Congresswoman Stephanie Herseth and -- knowing of my interest in all things related to religion and politics -- they told me about their new governor's strategy for dealing with the drought that plagued South Dakota this past spring. Republican Governor Mike Rounds put together a task force to deal with drought-related problems, tasked state agencies to develop solutions, and proclaimed a state-wide day of prayer for rain.

Yep, you read that correctly. As a solution to ending the drought, the governor asked everyone in the state to pray for rain.

And apparently they were just a little too good at it. It did in fact start raining on May 23, the day of prayer. And it didn't stop for fourteen days. The ground was so parched that it couldn't handle all of the water, many areas in the state flooded, and they had to call in FEMA, whose officials are currently assessing damage and deciding whether to declare parts of the state a disaster.

The lesson clearly is that if you're going to deal with a problem by having your citizens pray about it, you might want to break them up into prayer groups, designating certain counties for Monday, others for Tuesday, and so on. The entire state petitioning for rain at one time was apparently too much for God, who said, 'Alright already!' and sent them a flood."

My Way News: "The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has endorsed a plan to distribute about 6,000 special DVD players to members. Specially encrypted discs, known as screeners, would be earmarked for a specific academy voter and would play only on that person's machine.

'It's extremely impressive,' said academy President Frank Pierson. 'It certainly looked foolproof to us.'

The player also would imprint an invisible watermark on the disc each time it is viewed. In addition, if someone uses a camcorder to tape the movie as it is playing on a monitor, that image would contain information on the person assigned the machine."

Saturday, July 03, 2004
dailyrecord: "STAR Trek actor James Doohan, who played engineer Scotty, has Alzheimer's disease.
The 84-year-old Canadian actor's family have revealed the progress of his dementia means he will have to retire from public life.
Despite a history of ill health, including Parkinson's disease and diabetes, he was still a regular fixture on the Star Trek convention circuit until recently.
And four years ago, he became a father for the seventh time with the birth of his daughter Sarah.
Doohan's wife Wende, 47, said yesterday: 'It is hard for him to do interviews because the more he starts searching for the words, the more frustrated he gets.
'With Jimmy, it's mostly the loss of words. He still recognises everybody. And there are times when he is sharp as a tack.
'But with any type of memory loss like this, it's the older memories that stick. The more recent ones are harder.'
A tribute to the actor a veteran of D-Day with the Royal Canadian Artillery will be held in LA next month.
After the show, called Beam Me Up, Scotty...One Last Time, he will receive his star on the Hollywood walk of fame."

Ex-prosecutor now toppling porn cases "'Dean has gone to the Dark Side,' Mason said. 'Most of the lawyers who leave this office go to large firms or into private practice where they make a lot of money. They don't usually go out to become expert witnesses in child-porn cases.'

To Mason's regret, Boland 'has created a cottage industry as a kiddie-porn expert,' he said. 'God bless the entrepreneur, but now his work is starting to affect law and order.'

Boland has teamed with criminal defense lawyers who are exploiting a provision of Ohio law that says to obtain a conviction, a prosecutor must prove that a digital portrait of suspected child pornography is, in fact, a picture of a child. To meet that requirement, the image must be authenticated as a child and not an adult digitally enhanced to look like a child - an extremely difficult level of proof for police and prosecutors, Boland says.

Without the evidence to refute Boland's testimony and prove authenticity, judges threw out child-pornography charges in Summit and Portage counties in March. A Columbiana County judge has reserved his ruling until trial.

The prospect of witnessing a wholesale dismissal of child-pornography cases has prosecutors and police distressed.

'People from the prosecutor's office have called to warn me: 'Dean, watch your back. They don't like what you're doing with digital imaging,' ' Boland said. 'I'm telling the truth and they don't like it. They want me to shut up. I've been in hypersensitive siege mode ever since I got threatened with arrest in Oklahoma.'

Boland, a married father of three and a self-styled conservative, resents being portrayed as 'the child-porn guy' by former colleagues.

'It's easy to demonize me,' he said, 'but from my perspective, I'm not out there testifying about child porn. I'm testifying about the technology of digital imaging.'"

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