"Monkeys that have brain damage due to malnutrition will sometimes
wallow in their own feces; but that fails to explain you two" said to
my children who have made a shambles of the family room.


Climate Security Down In Flames [G P PI T]

I was so happy to read of the defeat of the “Lieberman-Warner Climate Security Act”. (Not that I dislike my own Mr. Leeeebermaaaannn, but anyone who dislikes a show like South Park because they can't track what their own kids watch is a tool in my book).

Also known as the “Climate Security Act” (part of Homeboy Security?) this was an attempt to pander to the EU, UN, and various other groups. I personally applaud both the Republics and the smattering of Democrats (science/engineering VS Liberal Arts degrees?) who voted this down.

I do love, as said by Reuters “Illinois Democrat Obama and Arizona Republican McCain, wrote letters saying they would have voted in favor if they had been in town to vote.” Riiiiight. Funny I can vote while traveling, but maybe they did not want to vote the popular vote - as the unwashed (voting) masses would’ve wanted - and alienate business.

Now, before you get too upset, when I mean “unwashed masses” I am referring to someone whose knowledge on global warming they get either from sitting through “An Inconvenient Truth” or a two-minute sound bite on TV.

I assume for the sake of discussion you know the following:
- Global human fossil-fuel use accounts for about 2% of the CO2 emitted annually, mother nature provides the rest;
- There has been an historic CO2 contribution by man, but almost all occurred prior to 1940;
- NASA’s “Y2K corrected” US temperature data has the hottest year on record was 1934;
- Greenland was inhabited (and truly “green”) during the Medieval Warming Period of about 1,000-1,300 AD, which had much lower CO2 levels;
- The scientific data shown that the rise in CO2 trails natural temperature increases as an indicator, not a cause. [“Ice Core Record of Atmospheric CO2 Around the Last Three Glacial Terminations”; Science; 283 (1999) 1712-1714]

My favorite quote repeated ad nauseum was "Today's vote sets the stage for a new president and Congress to enact strong legislation that will more effectively build a clean energy economy and prevent the worst consequences of global warming," a coalition of green groups, including Environmental Defense Fund, National Wildlife Federation and Natural Resources Defense Council, said in a statement. Good for them. I hope they and their members can cut their CO2 emissions by 66 percent by 2050 without buying credits.

I also hope all know that the baseline date for the Kyoto protocol – 1990 – gave England, Germany, and Russia a major advantage. Britain had shut down most coal mines and shifted to natural gas, Germany shut down the "dirty" East German industries, and Russia got their credits by shutting down the inefficient Soviet-era factories.

Do you know that the good ol' EU will not meet their emission reductions under Kyoto? Well, they will on paper; that is why Russia signed the Kyoto Protocol recently; to market their credits to EU nations. At least the Russians make no bones about it – maybe they'll finally win the “new cold war” which is global warming.

But if you think you are sure about global warming, here’s your chance to win $500,000!


Movies Not [F H I PI]

I really love movies, and sometimes the more offbeat or unusual the better. I have tried to foster that with my kids, but also being aware that age-appropriate truly is the parent's responsibility. I thought I'd list some of the movies I have seen recently, and as a special treat the top 1o movies I will never watch.

I watched Last of the Mohicans, which is a great adaptation by Michael Mann, who also directed the first Hannibal Lechter (Silence of the Lambs) movie called Manhunter. Although I'm sure the two-handed firing of dual muskets at the climax was a nod to such John Woo film as Ying Hung Boon Sik (A Better Tomorrow).

As a chick flick I saw the Nanny Diaries, which is cute in saccharinistic, puerile sort of way. But it is a sacrifice all men must make for the sake of their marriage.

We also watched Fast Times at Ridgemont High,  which is a great, entertaining teen flick. Ray Walston as Mr. Hand is a treat, and a very young Forest Whitaker gave no hint he would one day be as good an actor as he turned out. To my chagrin (but to both my sons' delight) I forgot the film had extended scenes of both Jennifer Jason Leigh (before she had the unfortunate accident that caused her forehead to metastasize) and Phoebe Cates sans clothing.

We watched Citizen Kane, which I had not seen in over 30 years, and may have been intoxicated at the time. I really forgot how good the film was, and how close it mirrored the real-life exploits of William Randolph Hearst. Do you remember the enigmatic "Rosebud" was the name of his... puppy?

As a prelude to watching The Magnificent Seven, we saw the movie it is based on, Kurosawa's The Seven Samurai. If you want to see a great movie about honor and sacrifice, watch this 3 hour epic.

Now these are all really good, entertaining films. There are however several films or types of films I will never see, for very disparate reasons.

The Passion of The Christ - now I know Christ died for us, but so did my uncle in WWII. This movie is based on anti-Semitic passion plays from the year 400, and not, repeat not any known biblical texts. If I am in that mood I'll watch Triumph of the Will or anything from Ms. Riefenstahl.

Josie & the Pussycats - many of us know how hot the original Josie cartoon character was, almost as hot as Betty and Veronica. However, I have no desire to see this klinker.

Schindler's List - I know Mr. Schindler was a hero, but I have seen Sophie's Choice and The Man in the Glass Booth; I'd love to see The Day the Clown Cried if Jerry Lewis ever releases it. This is too much. 

Psycho - A 1998 shot for shot remake of the original directed by Gus Van Sant? I have to presume there is a special corner in hell for executives that greenlight and fund things like this.

Anything by Tom Green; I do not care if his wife appears in it.

Most TV-based movies, like Dukes of Hazzard, Bewitched and Rocky & Bullwinkle. I will exclude the TV-based Blues Brothers, X-Files and South Park movies.

The Two Jakes, a sequel to Chinatown, which is sort of like filming a sequel to Casablanca.

And of course, the hilarious sci-fi extravaganza An Inconvenient Truth (at least in the context of it being a documentary).


Hillary Inhales [PI S]

Since Mrs. Clinton has dropped out (with several tens of millions of
Southern Dems saying to themselves "Shoot, I ain't voting' for no
Nigrah!"); I guess the next thing we will see is Hillary on The View!
At least - unlike Baba Wawa - she'll remember who Obama is.


Green Hotels [AN]

We all are constantly assaulted by “think green’ comments and admonishments. We all surely want to act ‘green’ but what does that mean?

Let’s look at hotels. Now I travel a lot, and most hotels have some sort of brochure prominently displayed about water use and re-using your towels. Now personally I think the best brochure would have a Native American with a tear running down his face while holding a polar bear cub, but I digress.

Anyway, these brochures comment on the millions of gallons of water wasted annually washing laundry, and if you want your towel and washcloth to be laundered, put it on the floor. Now I don’t know about you, but I generally wash in the descending order of cleanest areas to ‘dirtiest’ – i.e. I start with my eyelids and end up just south of my coccyx. The same with drying, I pat my face dry, then towel my hair, dry my arms, and end up by using the towel as a giant piece of dental floss, if you catch my drift.

Now for those of you with experience in either microbiology or site decontamination, no matter how one cleans an area, there is some residual contamination. I prefer to minimize my chance of catching ‘pink eye’ or some other illness.

Now, I would re-use my towels, but here is what I demand in return, Mr. hotel-chain-president.

First of all, I assume that in saving those millions of gallons of water (and associated labor) you might save some ‘green’ too (I mean the dollar green). So how about in return you pay your housekeeping staff a fair wage, and even (gasp) offer healthcare?

How about in the bathrooms soap and shampoo dispensers, so every day – no matter how well I hide the soap bar that is 87% intact – the dutiful staff finds it and throws it out replacing it with a new, lavender scented bar?

What about coffee condiments put out a la carte, so if I want a pinch of Splenda (never mind the risk) I can do that and not have to have the dedicated housekeeping person dispose of the creamer, real sugar, etc?

How about real HVAC controls that work, so I do not have to put it to 62.5 (why should the thermostat even be allowed to go that low is beyond me) to get the temperature down to about 69?

How about lights that require a room key to be inserted into a wall slot, so if I leave with 4 lights on they will shut off ten minutes after I leave. On a side note of you do this please mark some outlets – for charging stuff – as “always powered”.

But here is the real challenge: put in a “grey water” system. This is where the water from laundry is kept in a holding tank, and used to flush toilets. Now that is a really “thinking green”