Category Archives: News

our own government admits that Iran isn’t developing nuclear weapons

This just in from some crazy left-wing blogger making up stories:

In a stunning reversal of Bush administration conventional wisdom, a new assessment by U.S. intelligence agencies concludes Iran shelved it’s nuclear weapons program over four years ago.

“We judge with high confidence that in fall 2003, Tehran halted its nuclear weapons program,” reads a declassified version of the National Intelligence Estimate key findings.

Oh, wait. It was ABC News, talking about a National Intelligence Estimate prepared by our very own intelligence agencies. Oh. Um…

But hey, Iran is still producing quantities of highly enriched uranium, right? And that can’t possibly be used for any other purpose, right? And just because they say they’re not producing nukes, and they actually aren’t producing nukes, that’s no reason to conclude that they won’t produce nukes, right?


Fever can unlock autism’s grip

Looks like there’s been some progress in figuring out how to reverse the effects of autism, at least temporarily. According to a recent study, some children have shown improvement while they have a fever over 100 degrees:

More than 80 percent of those with fever showed some improvements in behavior during it and 30 percent had dramatic improvements, the researchers said. The change involved things like longer concentration spans, more talking, improved eye contact and better overall relations with adults and other children.

Obviously this doesn’t help in terms of home remedies, but it does indicate that autism isn’t completely irreversible.

Yet another reason not to buy products made in China

As y’all know my aunt and uncle have been heavily involved with the fight against asbestos in this country. Their latest endeavor has been assisting with consumer product testing. The results were released to the press this week. Seattle PI ran an exclusive article last Tuesday. Some highlights are below:

Asbestos has been found in a variety of consumer products, including one of this season’s biggest-selling Christmas toys, according to the nation’s largest asbestos victims organizations.

The CSI Fingerprint Examination Kit, two brands of children’s play clay, powdered cleanser, roof sealers, duct tapes, window glazing, spackling paste and small appliances were among the products in which asbestos was found by at least two of three labs hired by the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization . . .

. . . The kit, made in China, is one of several items licensed by CBS after its popular “CSI” science-crime shows. This model has an extensive array of plastic tools, inks and three types of very fine powders — white, black and glow-in-the-dark. The analysis done for the victim’s organization found high levels of two types of asbestos in the white and the glow powder

Physicians are especially concerned because of the significant likelihood of children breathing in asbestos fibers as they hunt for fingerprints and use a soft-bristled brush to move the powder around.

Undercover restorers fix Paris landmark’s clock

Now that’s what secret groups of talented artists and technicians should be doing! According to a Guardian article, a “cultural guerilla” group called Untergunther was recently cleared of charges related to breaking into a Paris monument and fixing its antique clock:

For a year from September 2005, under the nose of the Panthéon’s unsuspecting security officials, a group of intrepid “illegal restorers” set up a secret workshop and lounge in a cavity under the building’s famous dome. Under the supervision of group member Jean-Baptiste Viot, a professional clockmaker, they pieced apart and repaired the antique clock that had been left to rust in the building since the 1960s. Only when their clandestine revamp of the elaborate timepiece had been completed did they reveal themselves.

Can you picture that story as a heist film, something smart like “Sneakers”? It would be so cool…

why the writer’s strike matters

IGN has a compelling interview with Ron Moore about the writer’s strike and how it affects BSG. It’s an eye-opening piece, to me at least. Suddenly it’s very clear why this is such an important issue for writers:

“I had a situation last year on Battlestar Galactica where we were asked by Universal to do webisodes [Note: Moore is referring to The Resistance webisodes which ran before Season 3 premiered], which at that point were very new and ‘Oooh, webisodes! What does that mean?’ It was all very new stuff. And it was very eye opening, because the studio’s position was ‘Oh, we’re not going to pay anybody to do this. You have to do this, because you work on the show. And we’re not going to pay you to write it. We’re not going to pay the director, and we’re not going to pay the actors.’ At which point we said ‘No thanks, we won’t do it.’”

“We got in this long, protracted thing and eventually they agreed to pay everybody involved. But then, as we got deeper into it, they said ‘But we’re not going to put any credits on it. You’re not going to be credited for this work. And we can use it later, in any fashion that we want.’ At which point I said ‘Well, then we’re done and I’m not going to deliver the webisodes to you.’ And they came and they took them out of the editing room anyway — which they have every right to do. They own the material — But it was that experience that really showed me that that’s what this is all about. If there’s not an agreement with the studios about the internet, that specifically says ‘This is covered material, you have to pay us a formula – whatever that formula turns out to be – for use of the material and how it’s all done,’ the studios will simply rape and pillage.”

There’s a lot more along those lines, so be sure to read the whole article if you get a chance. Moore makes an excellent point: TV is rapidly moving toward being just another Internet service. The studios are trying their best to get paid for Internet distribution, while trying even harder not to pay anyone down the line for it.