Saturday, October 3, 2015

Gun-toting student(s) couldn’t do anything about Oregon mass killing

Let’s get one thing straight right now;

…the ability to carry guns on a college campus doesn’t equate to stopping mass murderers.

John Parker, a student on the campus of Oregon's Umpqua Community College admitted to carrying a concealed gun on Oct. 1st when another student opened up with his gun killing nine other students.

But Parker wasn’t in a position to use it — he was locked down in the school's veterans center several hundred yards away from the science hall where the shooting took place.

Parker wasn’t the only armed student on campus that day. The reason I know this is Oregon is one of just eight states that allow the carrying of concealed weapons on campus, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Despite Umpqua Community College’s claim to be a Gun Free Zone, state law trumps that claim. It’s anyone’s guess how many students were packing that day, but the law of averages suggest that out of 3,300 students there was more than one, or two.

It’s safe to say there’s a certain amount of confusion regarding gun laws in Oregon.

Here’s the main point:

Debate over the ins and outs of concealed carry policy misses the broader point: that putting more guns on campus is not an effective way to prevent or limit violence.

The NRA and other gun lobbies like to raise this argument (arm everyone and that’ll solve our mass killing problem) to feel good about themselves.

In the end, it’s about confusing what we really need to talk about, which is how guns are completely out of control.

Related: ‘Good Guy With A Gun’ Was On UCC Campus At Time Of Massacre

Time for me to walk on down the road…

The Daily Hack Report: See If Your Identity Has Been Stolen

Good Day World!

Welcome to my latest news feature; The Daily Hack Report.

Are you wondering if your identity has been stolen recently? The following links will provide the most recent retail data hacks that may have affected you:

Scottrade Says Hack Could Have Affected 4.6M Customers

Experian Says Info from 15 Million T-Mobile Records Hacked

Hilton Hotels Looking Into Possible Data Breach

Older links with new information:

OPM Hack: Government Finally Starts Notifying 21.5 Million Victims

OPM Hack: 5.6 Million Fingerprints (Not 1.1 Million) Were Stolen

Trump Hotels Confirm Hack Exposed Customer Credit Card Info

October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month, a collaborative effort by government and industry to inform Americans about ways to stay safe and secure online.

Here’s a good resource to check on daily updates about cyber attacks out to steal your identity.

Related: A Quick Guide to the Worst Corporate Hack Attacks

Time for me to walk on down the road…


Friday, October 2, 2015

In America there’s a mass killing every 2 weeks – what can change that?

Another mass shooting in the USA. This time in Oregon at a small community college.

They’re becoming more common every day.

Statistics show that we can expect a mass shooting about every two weeks.

Headlines like this are becoming routine:

Obama Condemns ‘Routine’ of Mass Shootings, Says U.S. Has Become Numb

Why are Americans 20 times more likely to die from gun violence than other citizens in civilized countries? Simple. We live in a gun culture nurtured by the NRA and the gun and ammo industries.

Rather than come up with more accountability in the gun sales system, the NRA has chosen to feed misinformation to the public to further their ultimate goal of no gun control.

It doesn’t have to be that way.

A single mass shooting changed everything in Australia.

In 1996, Martin Bryant entered a café at the site of a historic penal colony at Port Arthur, Tasmania.

The 28-year-old ate lunch before pulling a semi-automatic rifle from his bag and embarking on a killing spree. By the time he was apprehended the next morning, 35 people were dead and 23 had been wounded.


The government introduced the National Firearms Agreement — legislation that outlawed automatic and semi-automatic rifles, as well as pump-action shotguns. A nationwide gun buyback scheme also saw more than 640,000 weapons turned in to authorities.


An article published online in July by the NRA claimed there was "growing consensus" that the laws hadn't made Australians safer.

Provocatively titled "Australia: There Will Be Blood," it also stated that Obama's portrayal of Australia's gun laws was "disingenuous."

Research, however, suggests otherwise. Gun-related homicides decreased 7.5 percent per year following the reforms, while firearm-related suicides have also fallen, according to one Australian study.

And although there have been calls to revisit the laws, most Australians haven't looked back. One news and pop culture website recently wrote: "The NRA reckons Australia's anti-gun laws are 'a mistake'; Australia tells NRA to go f*** itself."

I second that motion.

Time for me to walk on down the road…


Waiting to Make Contact With Extra-Terrestial Life Forms

                                   Good Day World!

I’m one of those visionaries that believe intelligent life exists somewhere in the vastness of space.

At one time, I would have been locked up in a loony bin for admitting that. But this is the 21st century and we’re still expanding our horizons through science.

The question of meeting extra-terrestrial life forms should be “When will it happen?” Not if it’ll ever happen. 

For the first time in human history, scientists have a plan and the means to answer the question of whether we're alone.

"The fact that science can actually apply itself to the question instead of it being purely philosophical is very exciting," says Jason Wright, an astronomer also at Penn State. "It might be a long shot that we can do this, but the question is so compelling."

Scientists at NASA say the best shot at finding extra-terrestrial life forms is on Europa, a moon of the planet Jupiter. Right now, there is no other body in the solar system that attracts as much scientific attention as this bright strange-looking moon, the smallest of Jupiter's four large satellites.

There’s always naysayers.

According to a recent study, “Nearby galaxies in our universe show no signs of advanced alien civilizations — at least for now.”

I say it’s only a matter of time. Then there’s the real possibility we aren’t going to like them, or they us.

In his famous lecture on Life in the Universe, Stephen Hawking asks: "What are the chances that we will encounter some alien form of life, as we explore the galaxy?"

More to the point, Hawking’s has suggested that “…alien contact is not a good idea.”

Who knows? Chances are they’re more intelligent and don’t want anything to do with us until we learn how to live without war and to live peacefully.

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Benghazi Committee Busted: McCarthy Gloats Over Clinton’s Dropping Numbers

Oops! The cat’s out of the bag.

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, who is campaigning to be the next Speaker of the House, let it slip that the whole Benghazi investigation by a special committee was aimed at hurting Hillary Clinton’s chances of being elected president.

Everybody thought Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right?” McCarthy told Fox News. “But we put together a Benghazi special committee, a select committee. What are her numbers today? Her numbers are dropping."

McCarthy's words were widely considered a major gaffe, among some of the first public remarks he made after jumping in the race to replace John Boehner as speaker.

Democrats said McCarthy's comments revealed the truth about the committee and countered longstanding Republican claims that the panel was set up to find out what happened in the attacks on American facilities in Benghazi, Libya that left four people dead.

The Benghazi committee, set up last year, may have violated ethics laws that ban using taxpayers' dollars for political purposes. Hurting Clinton’s electability definitely falls under the politics category.

Violating ethics laws is nothing new to Republicans who will do anything to get into the White House. You can bet the Select Benghazi Committee will continue to operate right up until election day next November.

Time for me to walk on down the road…


The Versatile Glider: From WW II to Modern Space Exploration

Image: Perlan 2 glider

The Perlan 2 experimental glider reached an altitude of 5,000 feet in a proof-of-concept test ahead of next year’s planned record-breaking journey to the stratosphere.

                                    Good Day World!

Look up in the sky! It’s a jet…err no…it’s a glider!

Oregonians like myself had the opportunity to see a truly wondrous advancement in flight history the other day. That is if we happened to look up at the right time.

An experimental glider that could eventually reach the edge of space without the power of an engine had a successful first test flight over Oregon this week, winning applause on Thursday from Airbus, a major backer of the project.

The manned glider, dubbed Perlan 2, reached an altitude of 5,000 feet, in a proof-of-concept test ahead of next year's planned record-breaking journey to the stratosphere.

To start its flight, the Perlan 2 is towed behind a motorized aircraft but once airborne it is able to harness the energy of the wind to gain speed and altitude, said Ed Warnock, CEO of the Perlan Project, a nonprofit organization run by a volunteers.

Next year, the Perlan Project plans to launch the glider near from the Andes mountains in Argentina, which should allow the craft to ride atmospheric waves to heights that researchers are only beginning to understand.

Gliders have come a long way folks.

I use to live in 29 Palms, California (I worked there as the editor of the local newspaper - The Desert Trail), next to the massive Marine Corps base.

At one time that base was called Condor Field and served as a training base for U.S. Army Air Force glider pilots during World War II.

Fun Factoid: Actor and Army Air Force pilot Jimmy Stewart also spent time at Condor Field.

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Pope Meets With Homophobic Clerk to Reassure Her She’s Doing the Right Thing!


Talk about good will disappearing like smoke.

When the Pope decided to secretly meet with homophobe Kim Davis he sent the wrong message…or did he? Was the meeting proof that the Pope still doesn’t think homosexuals should get marriage licenses?

Given all the people and groups in America the Pope could have embraced, he embraces this symbol of the hate-filled and self-proclaimed “Christian-right.”

What a clear statement about theology of the church of Rome.  In my mind he has demonstrated that he is a politician and has no moral or Christian integrity.


On the Twitter wire: “If there were a nuclear war today, the only things living tomorrow would be Kim Davis, and cockroaches.”


By meeting with Kim Davis, especially if he did say "Thank you for your courage" and "Stay strong", the Pope has completely undone everything conciliatory that he did on the US visit and indeed, undone all his statements since he became Pope that appeared to show he had an open attitude to views of morality different from his own.

He now shows clearly that he remains firmly on the side of religious bigots. If the pope was stupid enough to waste his time on her then that's his problem.

By the way, Davis’s apostolic church believes Catholicism is a false religion that gives it's power to the beast in Revelation. But to a hypocrite like her, certain things can be ignored.

She's changed her mind on other things and went against the teachings of her "Bible" (church), by selling licenses to divorced couples, so I suppose constantly changing her religious beliefs is just another step in her life time of convenient decision making.

Time for me to walk on down the road…


Solve Homeless Problem: Put Them Down With Lethal Injections!

Politician Says Homeless People Should Be Put Down By Lethal Injection

Good Day World!

A Mexican politician, Olga Gutierrez Machorro (photo) thinks the best way to solve the city’s homeless population is to put them down with lethal injections.

I’m not kidding. This woman thinks it would be an act of kindness to kill them.


Machorro is a member of the local government in Tecamachalco, Mexico. She’s also the councilor responsible for the Vulnerable Groups Commission - who try to find ways to help the homeless and disadvantaged. 

If you’re homeless in Tecamachalco your life is on the line daily. Killing beggars has been going on unofficially for some time, according to Machorro.


Machorro claims the local psychiatric hospital, El Batan, often just deposits patients deemed “un-aggressive” in the middle of the motorways at night, where they are killed by cars but also cause accidents that put others at risk.

At least some locals were outraged by her murderous suggestion, so she said she’d come up with another plan to get rid of homeless people.

No telling what the new plan will endorse...but I suspect it won’t be good news for the homeless population. 

Time for me to walk on down the road…


Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Really? After failing 50 times House GOP Tries To Gut Obamacare Again!

Republican members of the House are once again caught in a Ground Hog Day cycle trying to destroy the Affordable Health Care Act.

This time, Republicans are using a special process that prevents Senate Democrats from blocking the legislation.

Under this special process, called reconciliation, the Senate can pass legislation with just 51 votes.

Isn’t that convenient? There’s 54 Republicans in the House.

Under Senate rules, minority Democrats have blocked most legislation because it requires 60 votes to advance a bill.

Here’s the kicker, even taking their devious route through this special process won’t achieve anything. President Obama can veto it.

The Republicans all know this is a wasted exercise. It’s about playing politics just to tell their extreme fan base they tried to overturn the evil health care law...again (apparently they need a lot of reassuring).

Is this what most of their constituents really want? A group of politicians who pander to ideology rather than reality? To continue attacking America’s health care system takes a certain blindness that’s polarizing our country.

For the record; official congressional estimates say that gutting the law will result in 15 million fewer people with health insurance by 2025. How can that be touted as a victory for the GOP?

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Why Are Americans Pissed OFF?

Good Day World!

Americans are pissed off.

Their not just a little bit mad about the direction the country is going…oh no...they’re furious!

According to a recent NBC/WSJ Poll, the difference between the “Haves” and “Have Nots” has become untenable.

There's a stark divide by income: 69 percent of Americans making $75,000 or more per year say they're confident and optimistic about their financial situation, compared with just 30 percent of those making less than $30,000.

No surprise then, that 62 percent of the respondents in the poll believe the country is headed in the wrong direction.

A plurality of adults feel angry because the American political system seems to be working for those with money and power.

There’s no doubt in my mind our political system is corrupt and owned by corporate America. So what else is behind the feeling that our country is sinking into a quagmire?

If you’re a Republican here’s the issues your fighting over:

"Stop Abortion"; "Enforce Immigration Laws"; "Defund Planned Parenthood"; and "Impeach Obama."

If you’re a Democrat here’s your issues:

"Fund Planned Parenthood"; "Equality/Human Rights"; "All Lives Matter"; "Get Big Money Out of Politics"; "Black Lives Matter."

Time for me to walk on down the road…


Monday, September 28, 2015

Invisibility Cloaks in Fiction and Fact

                                Good Day World!

Have you ever read the novel, The Invisible Man?

The reason I ask is because what was once science fiction is now fact.

Did you know that physicists have figured out the optical parameters for a magic trick they characterize as a kind of "invisibility cloak?"

Invisibility cloaks have been getting a lot of press over the years.

That's not only because Harry Potter put his fictional cloak to such good use, but also because researchers have been using high-tech metamaterials to create structures capable of bending light around an object to keep it hidden.

Physics professor John Howell and graduate student Joseph Choi are co-authors of a paper about the "Rochester Cloak" that has been submitted to the journal Optics Express.

Oh, yeah.

And there’s a lot of other invisible applications currently in use by our military. Like this one for instance. Here’s another one you should check out invisibility camo uniforms for our soldiers!

Time for me to walk on down the road…


Sunday, September 27, 2015

A Potpourri of Pope Stories for Sunday

Good Day World!

The Pope is welcome everywhere he visits.

I’m not a Catholic, or a particularly religious person, but I think he’s a nice guy.

I respect a lot of things he stands for – especially when it comes to helping the poor in this world.

In my humble estimation, Pope Francis is a “real” person. His compassion for all is a lesson for the leaders of the world. Here are seven examples of what I mean:

* Pope Francis in Philadelphia Mass Calls for Church to Place Greater Value on Women

* Pope Francis, in New York, Takes On Extremism and Inequality

* The Pope asks Who Am I To Judge?

* Pope Francis, in Congress, Pleads for Unity on World’s Woes

* Pope Francis to Congress: We’re All Immigrants

* Pope Francis on the True Meaning of Poverty

* Pope Francis Reminds the World To Care About Poverty

You don’t have to be Catholic to respect Pope Francis. His actions speak for themselves.

I agree with him – the man – because he’s not afraid to talk about global warming or capitalistic greed in one breath, and caring for the poor in the next.

Time for me to walk on down the road…


Blog Break Until Presidential Election is Over

I finally hit the wall today. I can't think of what to say about all of the madness going on in this country right now. I'm a writer...