Sunday, 24 August 2014

Entertainment stuff from the week 18-24/8/2014

Hi Whovians,

Firstly, my vicarious apologies for not having posted anything last week.

You didn't miss it. I didn't write it.

Why a vicarious apology? Because it is my router that should be apologising -- i had no internet connection for a week. Ah well.

So, secondly... i imagine i get Doctor Who fans reading this blog.

Well i'm not one... because fanaticism implies irrationality :-P

But there does exist a new series, and a new broom.

Doctor. I mean Doctor.

And, well... it all starts quite funkily. In fact it gets off to a roaring start :o)

I'm sorry, i'll just go and destroy myself with acid...

...there, done.

I know i gave a little spoileryness to Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes recently, but i shan't say much about this.


- Don't expect any of the first five minutes to make any sense at all
- Do expect a confused metaphor about brooms and people and are they really the same, well they're not, but they are, but not really, well only when their first name is 'The', dot dot dot...

Oh, but i think they wangle the oldness thing pretty damn well.

And no, this Doctor is nothing like Malcolm Tucker :-D

It's a very 'up and down' episode, in my opinion. Like a metaphorical game of two halves.

Except those two halves are played simultaneously.

Maybe that's why it made such little sense :-D

This is what it looks like when a British comedian takes on an American megalomaniac on twitter... :-D

Graeme, or 'the double-g' as i don't call him, often takes pot shots at people like Trump :-D

'Police claim Cliff Richard search unearthed horrific ‘new material’'

'Daily Mail criticised for continuing to pass itself off as a ‘newspaper’'

'New Law Requires Welfare Recipients To Submit Sweat To Prove How Hard They’re Looking For Job',36626/


Around this time, last year, Narendra Dhabolkar was murdered by superstitionists, while taking his morning constitutional. Supporters and fellow activists against black magic and other superstitious practices have regathered at the spot, to renew pressure on Authorities to actually come to a conclusion and get something done. Big powers in India, like governments and Religious organisations, are immune from criticism in cases like this, where investigations that might effect them are expected to just peter out.

On the 21st of August, 1914, mid-war, an event that has been heralded by superstitionists for millennia occurred - a solar eclipse passed over eastern Europe. There are no known and surviving images of the eclipse, however, as it is believed all viewing sites were clouded over at the time, so clearly the gods weren't all that willing to inspire feelings of forlorn foreboding!

In other news:

Anti-GM superstitionists are pushing for Science to be banned from the EU, because the reality-based position on GM crops is not to ban them through hysterical fear that has absolutely failed to justify itself through any evidence available to mankind! Recently, nine different organisations, including Greenpeace and Friends Of The Earth - putting the 'mental' into 'environmental' - have signed a letter to the new president of the EC - Jean-Claude Juncker to not just fire the current Chief Scientific Advisor (Professor Anne Glover - yes they want a woman out of work) but to completely erase the job from existence! And all for the sake of the quack 'organics' industry. I hope they resist this industry lobbying, the way the Fisheries Committee didn't. Unfortunately, this is the kind of move that can be seen as a good thing, even if done for the wrong reasons. Corruption by power is a facile argument for the Science Officer - why don't they make it against the European bank? Inconsistency makes me suspicious.

Did you hear about that earthquake that caused a big ravine to open up, severing Highway 26, near Hermosillo, in Mexico? Well, it wasn't, so it couldn't, and it didn't, and not there. What actually happened was that an underground stream eroded the ground away, which eventually collapsed in on the resultant subterranean mini-canyon. The site might be in Mexico, but as you can see from the pictures, it was not anywhere near Highway 26, and in fact not close to Hermosillo either. But you can rely on the Media to churnalise the story, as if my first sentence's answer were "yes" :-D

Here's a poetic one. Can you really die of a broken heart? Obviously, if your heart stops working, then you will die. But can a metaphorical broken heart (often felt as tension in the muscles of the chest - not the heart itself) cause a literal broken heart? According to a study published in JAMA, there is a mechanism by which severe stress weakens the function of muscles in the heart, causing a collapse of the left ventricle which, of course, can lead to death. This can explain why there is an increased mortality in people who have just lost someone they were highly emotionally bonded to, for about 6 months after they died.

A herbalist quack in Sierra Leone might be responsible for hundreds of deaths to Ebola. She was claiming she could cure the disease (there is no known cure) causing infected people from Guinea to travel to Sierra Leone, thereby spreading it to hundreds more people. Ignorance, religion, and non-religious superstition have all played their part in maximising the number of people who have died from this year's Ebola outbreak. The number to have been killed by it now totals more than 1000. Many of the populations hit do not understand Germ Theory, and so are highly susceptible to ideas mongered by religionists, herbalists, etc.
The impact of the outbreak could actually cause harm to billions of people all around the world, indirectly, as avaricious companies have taken the opportunity to lobby for further repeal of medical drugs standards ('advanced approval' as it's called), so that they can get any old shit on the market as soon as possible, in order to exploit people's desperation for something to protect them against Ebola. The same was done with HIV, back in the 1980s. Standards for getting products registered collapsed, and are still that way, because pharma companies took the opportunity to lower standards for all diseases - not just AIDS. What should have happened was a compartmentalised case for those with little hope of survival, but instead, everyone else has to suffer the lack of regulations that should exist to ensure people know what drug 'X' actually does!

Magpies don't collect shiny things. Did you think they did? Many people have. "We did not find evidence of an unconditional attraction to shiny objects in magpies. Instead, all objects prompted responses indicating neophobia – fear of new things – in the birds." said Dr Toni Shephard, researcher at the Centre for Research in Animal Behaviour (CRAB) at the University of Exeter. So that's that superstition done for.

Superstitionists in the Media are still desparately trying to see aliens on the Moon, or Mars, or wherever they can. Here's Phil Plait, admonishing some pareidolic claims. Both digital and analogue photographic artifacts are tools for superstitionists to 'see' aliens, ghosts, orbs, etc etc etc. But i still insist that Mohammed has presented themselves on Mars :-D

------------------------------------------------------ contemporary stuff#

'Robin Williams - "Seize the Day" - by Melodysheep'

'#RosettaAreWeThereYet – Fabulous fables and tales of tails [HD]'

'"Optimist Or Idiot?" Tales Of Mere Existence'

Never watch cyriak videos just before going to bed :-D

'Drinking water extracted from duck poo pond'

'Trevor Noah - Hip Hop/Rap Music Censorship'

'Plastic from the Air, Global Warming Solution or SCAM?'

Hmmm... my opinion of Dell just made a nosedive for the floor!

'John and Kevin's Sunday Papers - August 2014'

'Victorian Secret Fan Language'
What do you mean, 19th century Britain isn't contemporary?? :-P

Bloody hell - there are more calories in that than there are colouries in the rainbow!

'You Can Now Play Video Games With Your Vagina! Ft. David So'

'L'Ecole des Commentaires (Yacine & D├ędo)'

------------------------------------------------------ of the weeks

Word Of The Week: sillage -- the degree to which someone's perfume lingers in the air, when they've passed

Genuine No-Joke Not-Kidding Science-Website Headline Of The Week: 'Tropical Storm Karina looks like a giant 'number 9' from space'

Tennissing Colemanball Of The Week: "It's Soares again, with reflexes that are right out of the top drawer"

Quote Of The Week: “It is surprising that people do not believe that there is imagination in science. It is a very interesting kind of imagination, unlike that of the artist. The great difficulty is in trying to imagine something that you have never seen, that is consistent in every detail with what has already been seen, and that is different from what has been thought of; furthermore, it must be definite and not a vague proposition. That is indeed difficult.” - Richard P. Feynman, The Meaning of It All: Thoughts of a Citizen-Scientist

------------------------------------------------------ non-contemporary stuff

'BBC news reporting that a kid fought off an alligator with his bear hands. Surely the bigger story is how he got hands like that'

'Useless machine advanced edition'


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