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Showing posts from July, 2005

Who killed Richard Cullen?

Guardian Unlimited Money : "An image keeps popping into my head. It's the old days. A customer in need sits down with their bank manager who says, '£1,000? You must be crazy!' I wonder: is there some economic sage out there who effectively invented the new way - someone who drew up a utopian image where banks would fall over each other to loan money to whoever wanted it. And so I call Lord Griffiths of Fforestfach. He's the vice chair-man of Goldman Sachs International, a former director of the Bank of England, and once the head of Margaret Thatcher's Domestic Policy Unit. I'd been told that if anyone could answer that question, he could. I ask him if this whole mess can be traced back to one man. I expect him to say something like, 'Oh no, it's far more complicated than that. It is a gradual shift. Nobody is to blame.' But he doesn't. Instead, he says, 'I hate to say it, but I was one of the people who argued strongly in favour of

Of Knowing And Not Knowing

Fred : ".......Trouble comes when the sciences overstep their bounds. It is one thing to study physical phenomena, another to say that only physical phenomena exist. Here science blurs into ideology, an ideology being a systematic and emotionally held way of misunderstanding the world. A science is open and descriptive, an ideology closed and prescriptive. A scientists says, in principle at least, “Give me the facts and I will endeavor to derive a theory that describes them.” The ideologist says, “I have the theory, and nothing that does not fit it can be a fact.” Having chosen his rut, he never sees beyond it. This has not been the way of the greats of science, but of the middle ranks, adequate to swell a progress or work in a laboratory. In the limitless confidence of this physics-is-all ideology there is a phenomenal arrogance. Perhaps we overestimate ourselves. As temporary phenomena ourselves in a strange universe we don’t really understand, here for reasons we do not kn

Life... and Death is Just a Bowl of Cherries....

Inspector falls into cherry vat and dies : " Co-workers found Mendoza, 38, in a large vat of cherries and brine just after 7 p.m. Tuesday at the company's Kroupa Road facility, said Grand Traverse County sheriff's Capt. Tom Emerson.       Emerson said Mendoza, a long-term employee at the company who worked as a quality control inspector, was pulled from the wooden container and given CPR before she was transported to Munson Medical Center.       'My understanding is that her job was to inspect the vats when they fill them full of cherries,' Emerson said. 'Apparently, she was on a steel walkway on top of these things looking down into them when the accident happened.'"

Terrorism Lessons From 1870

TCS: Tech Central Station : ".....'And because I think that would be a disaster, it is essential that the Muslim world wake up to the fact that it has a jihadist death cult in its midst. If it does not fight that death cult, that cancer, within its own body politic, it is going to infect Muslim-Western relations everywhere. Only the Muslim world can root out that death cult. It takes a village. Friedman's point of view seems eminently reasonable and logical. He is calling on moderate Muslims, for the sake of self-preservation, to do something to stop the barbaric theatrical gestures of the terrorists. Up to this point, however, moderate Muslims have seemed paralyzed. We might wonder why this is the case. In Fools Crow, there are moderate native Americans. However, they, too, are paralyzed. Their failure to restrain a small group of terrorists is what leads to the massacre. Perhaps James Welch, writing from the native American point of view, can offer some insights

Andy Rooney is a security idiot

jaynote: I was taping 60 minutes tonight because they had a segment on new flying machines, so I saw Rooney's bit. He did a list of things that are true, and one of them was; "Numbers are longer than they used to be. There's something wrong with a personal identification number on a credit card or a bank check that is larger than the number of people that there are in the world." no no no Mr. Rooney, there is nothing wrong with that. Suppose the number of id numbers was twice the population. This gives 2 problems; a 50% chance that any random number would be valid, and when the population grows you run out of numbers (like we are with Vehicle Identification Numbers in 2011) With 12 digits for a credit card individual account identifier there's a trillion (10 raised to the 12th power, or 1,000,000,000,000) possible account numbers, so odds are a valid number can't be guessed, nor will we run out of numbers in the near future.

Professor says Bush administration is keeping a species off the endangered list. : "In May the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said it could not declare the Miami Blue an endangered species, even though the butterfly met the criteria, because it lacked the staff and money to protect it. The Center for Biological Diversity, a non-profit group based in Tucson, Ariz., on Thursday filed a 60-day notice of intent to sue the service over the decision. In announcing its decision, the wildlife service claimed that scientists had failed in their attempts to reintroduce the butterfly to its former range. Since releasing Miami Blues at Biscayne and Everglades national parks, researchers detected only 'an inconsistent or sporadic presence of only a small number of individuals,' stated the agency's written evaluation, published May 11 in the Federal Register. 'Monitoring results do not indicate that the Miami Blue has become established at any of the release sites.' Thomas Emmel, professor of zoology and entomology at the Uni