Pope to ET – Come in Please


At a scientific conference in 2009, the Vatican conceded that there may be other forms of life in the universe. In a statement issued by Vatican representative Rev. Jose Gabriel Funes, who is an astronomer and director of the Vatican observatory, the Catholic Church went on record as saying -” Just as there is a multitude of creatures on Earth, there could be other beings, even intelligent ones, created by God. This does not contradict our faith, because we cannot put limits on God’s creative freedom.”

I for one, am pondering the Vatican. Rather an unusual position when you take their history into consideration.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/world/2009/11/10/vatican-seeks-signs-alien-life/#ixzz256RjrkNX

File:Benedykt XVI (2010-10-17) 4.jpg

Pope Benedict XVI, from Wikepedia

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Once in a Blue Moon….


A blue moon refers to a second full moon within a calendar month. On August 31, we will witness this event.

In 1883 after the eruption of Krakatoa, the moon actually appeared to be blue, ash from the volcano was responsible. Smoke from large forest fires can do the same thing, and was reported in 1953 during a humongous muskeg fire in Canada. Similar reports came after the eruptions of Mt. St. Helens in 1980, and Mt. Pinatubo in 1991.

” Blue moon, you saw me standing alone….. ”

http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2012/29aug_bluemoon/

A Few Thoughts on Stray Dogs


A few blocks from my house, a single city block has 3 dog “spas”. Even a hint of rain or snow and suddenly the side walks fill with embarrassed canines sporting expensive boots and slickers.  I gawk in disbelief as I spot dogs being pushed in custom carriages, or carried in expensive totes. The streets of my city resemble Paris, where dodging doggie doo is an art. Clearly North America has embraced this re marketed dog culture, a new badge of status and wealth.

Estimates put the worlds feral dog population at 600 million. In Bali alone there are half a million stray dogs, with   30,000  dog bite incidents last year. The WHO ( World Health Organization ) has issued a travel advisory for Bali, warning of the rabies problem.  Rabies kills 55,000 people a year, almost all a result of dog bites. In Baghdad of the estimated 1.25 million strays, 58,000 were destroyed in a three month period last year. Mauling by feral dogs are common and in some parts of the world, becoming a consideration for tourists selecting a destination.

In 2011 Americans spent over 50 billion dollars on their pets.

A pack of street dogs naps on a traffic island in Bucharest, Romania. In spite of a culling program, the animals swarm the streets—and occasionally maul residents and tourists. Photo courtesy of Flickr user cod_gabriel.

http://blogs.smithsonianmag.com/adventure/2012/07/mans-best-friend-the-worlds-number-one-pest/

This Is How We Feed The Animals


It was never my intention to post on politics, however this story hit like a rubber mallet. On Tuesday at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida two delegates were expelled for tossing peanuts at an African American reporter. Many witnesses heard them say “this is how we feed the animals” Ponder that for a moment……

http://news.nationalpost.com/2012/08/29/nuts/

The future of America?

Hurricane Isaac got me Pondering


As hurricane Isaac approaches the Gulf Coast it is Katrina that comes to mind first. Katrina will go down as one of the most shameful chapters in American history. Unfortunately Katrina is not the only chapter in that book.The Great Flood of 1927 wrote the book on government inaction.

In the summer of 1927 after months of torrential rain, levees along the Mississippi River started to give way. With the water rising and situation hopeless rather than move the mostly black, share cropper population to safety, they were rounded up at gun point. Held prisoner in work camps along the river, thousands were forced to work, sand bagging the wobbly dikes. They had no rights, no option to leave, no say in their fate. Plantation owners feared if they were allowed to go they would never return, plantations couldn’t survive without the cheap black work force.

A rescue was organized by the sympathetic son of a plantation owner, when it was clear the levees would burst. Hundreds of boats waited in the river, in the end, less than 100 white women and children were taken to safety.

Enter, then Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover. Wanting to run for president the next year and sensing a photo opportunity, he stepped in. Hoover commissioned a report on abuses to blacks on the levies. Not liking the findings he approached an influential black leader, striking a deal. If the report was sugar coated, Hoover promised in return to give land to all the share croppers with no interest loans and grants. All he asked for was their vote the following year.

The deal was struck. Hoover was elected. No one got land.

The flood of 1927 is responsible for the largest migration of people in American history. It gave birth to the Mississippi delta blues,  perhaps you can now understand the name Muddy Waters.

http://usslave.blogspot.ca/2011/05/mississippis-concentration-camps-on.html

Before Da Vinci there was Al Jazari


The name Leonardo Da Vinci is known worldwide. Ponder the name Al Jazari, and the remarkable things he made, long before Da Vinci was born. Until his death in 1206 , Al Jazari invented the flush toilet, robotics, crank and gear shafts, piston driven pumps for water wheels, gear shafts, and his astounding list of automatic machines for telling time, washing hands, pouring tea, or playing music. All this while Europe muddled about in the Dark Ages. Some of his water wheels are still operational, 800 years later. Before his death Al Jazari recorded his inventions in a book, it is said Da Vinci used it as inspiration.

http://www.history-science-technology.com/articles/articles%206.htm

Al-Jazari, an islamic golden age scholar
Al Jazari

Look – It’s a Moondog


Rainbows at night are not rainbows at all, they’re Moondogs. Watch for them as the moon gets full, and shines more brightly. As the nights get colder, water vapour in the air freezes as it rises forming ice crystals. When the moonlight passes through the crystals, we have a “moondog” appearing in the night sky.

Photo courtesy spaceweather.com