IM Moments #1

September 25, 2008

(12:55:39 PM) Virgil_Anty: The leader of Pakistan needs to be shot in the leg.
(12:55:47 PM) Virgil_Anty: Tell him, knock it off or else!
(12:56:25 PM) Rage Mime: He’s not available on IM right now, but I’ll let him know as soon as he comes back from lunch.

700-billion dollar Christmas gift

September 25, 2008

It’s that time of year again as we head into the Christmas shopping season.  Already the major stores and malls are starting to put out the Christmas paraphernalia that make the holidays so special.  I don’t know about you, but I feel a certain sense of relief when I walk through the shops knowing that everything needed to bling the halls and buy that special someone that perfect gift is all just a credit card transaction away.

Yet with soaring gasoline prices, unemployment, pending terrorism (is it burnt orange?) and our financial system being in a shambles has all cast a dark shadow over this 4th quarter event.  I’m guessing I don’t stand alone when I say I’m not sure if I can bling the halls and buy that perfect gift.  Heck, at this point I’m not sure I can pay the mortgage and feed the kids.

Still, every cloud has a silver lining.  This week the Federal Government is in the process of deciding to bailout the financial industry.  Apparently they have 700 billion dollars laying around and at this moment are looking to give it to the corporations that played fast and loose in the sub-prime housing market.   Me thinks some CEOs are ripe for a smacked bottom, but that’s commentary for a different time.  Frankly, the first time I heard this number I was absolutely blown away, but then I started thinking.  Yes, thinking about an alternative plan, since the Feds only have the one plan.

So here goes.  The Rage Mime plan is simple and to the point. Instead of giving the 700 billion to the corporations simply give it to the the People the Fed is supposed to be representing. Here’s how it works:

Step 1 – Distribute the 700 billion dollars to each and every U.S. Citizen.  Easy enough, just take the 700 billion dollars and divide that by the 305 million.  That works out to about $2295.00 for each and every person!  Or about $9180 dollars for an average family of four.  That’s cool, I could use a few extra thousand.

Step 2 – Setup a website that accepts charitable donations (PayPal has something like that, right?) for the financial system bailout.  Include the information along with the check so people know where to send their money.

This is nothing less then a win-win scenario for the Christmas season.  Firstly, we all will have extra cash to bling the halls and buy those perfect gifts.  Economic stimulous indeed! This will have an immediate positive impact on our economy – spending good, saving bad – especially since our banks are failing.  Secondly, we will have the opportunity to donate to a real charity.  None of the Save the Children crap, real people with real financial problems.  And certainly nothing says Christmas more then giving without expecting anything back.  Best of all, it’s tax deductible.

Apology by Church of England goes unheard by Darwin

September 17, 2008

Artists Impression of Darwin in Hell

In a bold move by the Church of England, Reverend Dr. Malcolm Brown, the Church’s director of mission and public affairs says that Christians, in their response to Darwin’s theory of natural selection, repeated the mistakes they made in doubting Galileo’s astronomy of the 17th century.

The Church will issue the following statement, “200 years from your birth, the Church of England owes you an apology for misunderstanding you and, by getting our first reaction wrong, encouraging other to misunderstand you still.  We try to practice the old virtues of ‘faith seeking understanding’ and hope that makes some amends”.

Although an important step by the Church of England toward enlightenment, Darwin who is currently languishing in a fiery Hell for proposing the as yet to be proven Theory of Natural Selection  was unable to hear the apology.

Chris Angel makes 4500-year-old ice shelf disappear!

September 4, 2008
Arctic Mind Freak

Arctic Mind Freak

In what could only have been pulled off by the most amazing illusionist of the 21st century – Chris Angel mind freaked Arctic ice shelf specialists at Trent University in Ontario into believing the 4,500-year-old Markham Ice Shelf disappeared.

Derek Muller, one of the shocked specialists had this to say, “The Markham Ice Shelf was a big surprise because it suddenly disappeared.  We went under a cloud for a bit during our research and when the weather cleared up, all of a sudden there was no more ice shelf.  It was a shocking event. ”

Muller went on to say that “half the biomass for the entire Canadian Arctic Ice Shelf ecosystem as a habitat for cold, tolerant microbial life” exists on the Markham Shelf.  So, you can imagine how he might be sweating bullets when he saw it was gone.  And apart from decimating massive ecosystems, the drifting ice shelf would also pose a threat for shipping in the Arctic Region.  Well, I’m not convinced about that last statement.  After all if you can’t see a 19-square-mile floating ice cube you’re probably already sunk.

Well, It would have been a real tragedy if climate change had caused this as there would be no hope for regrowth of the shelf or the resurection of the lost ecosystems.   Fortunately, this was just another amazing Mind Freak and had nothing todo with warmer temperatures and changing climates.

Autonomous helicopters teach themselves to fly

September 3, 2008
AI Copter

AI Chopper

Standford computer scientists have developed an autonomous helicopter that learns by watching human beings fly.  The result is a helicopter that can fly complex tricks on its own.    Don’t panic, Skynet has not achieved consciousness.

In robotics this is dubbed “apprenticeship learning” where robots observe an expert (we humans) then replay the trick for all to be amazed.  After which ‘computer scientists’ get cocky and say things like “autonomous” or “artificial intelegence” – well, that’s a bit far fetched, but still very cool.

American’s are throwing out their money

September 3, 2008
Money in Trash Can

Every day American’s are reaching into their wallets and purses and throwing their hard earned cash right into the trash.  Don’t believe it?  Do this, on trash day take a walk down the block and peek inside any of your neighbors trash cans.  You are guaranteed to find anywhere from a few dollars to hundreds of dollars worth of food in any of the trash cans.  Oh, you thought this was about dollars and cents.  Actually it is.   Americans are throwing out perfectly edible food – about 1 pound of it – for a family of 4 each and every day.  It works out to almost 500 pounds of food yearly.  Worst of all, this is food that often times has not expired or even been opened.

You are probably thinking how can this be?  With 66% of adult American’s being overweight or obese, why would there be any food in the trash cans at all.  I too was surprised by this.  Here’s the deal, American’s have created a consumer driven throw-it-away culture that does not think to much about how food is produced.  Food for us is relatively cheap and in great supply (assuming you want to count fast food as, well, food).  Anyhow, the harsh stark reality is that we just don’t care, but we should.

Unfortunately the problem is systemic. It begins with growers and works its way up the food supply chain. Growers, for example, will take risks on the commodities market if they think it will make the big bucks. Sometimes it pays off, but a missed opportunity can result with edible food literally being tilled under because of market timing. More waste is created by restaurants and markets who deliver food to consumers. Food is thrown out regularly for a variety of economic reasons; surprisingly it’s often cheaper to throw out perfectly good food then to sell or serve it. Bottom line is the bottom line, right! I’m not convinced especially with the staggering numbers of people in Food Crisis in the US alone.

Here’s a few numbers for you to chew on.  The New York Times reported that 27 percent of all edible food, meaning available for consumption, ends up in land fill. According to the study almost 100 billion pounds of the 356 billion pounds of edible food in the United States was never eaten. 100 billion pounds is absolutely an astounding number that I have a hard time even getting my head around; you know, just trying to imagine that much food just thrown away.

So what is to be done about it?  Seriously, what are your attitudes towards food?  Do you throw out food because you think anything over a few hours old is rotten?  Or, do you eat left overs until they are growing hair on them and smell like a trash bin?

Star Trek Fans Polled, but not Shatnered…

August 28, 2008

1051 Star Trek Online fans in a recent poll ranked their all time favorite Star Trek Motion Pictures: 10% for Star Trek: Undiscovered Country, 12% for Star Trek: Nemesis, 21% for Star Trek:The Wrath of Kahn, and a whopping 31% for Star Trek: First Contact. Yes! All excellent movies in the Star Trek franchise.

Unbelievably, the Search for Spock and the Final Frontier received a combined 2% of the vote, which clearly demonstrates that 21 of those that voted are Ferengi.

Welcome to Rage Mime

August 28, 2008

A Rage Mime will be visiting you shortly.