Friday, July 27, 2012

Im voting for Obama, but does it really matter? Really?

On the advice of brother Matt I read a great book by the author Matt Taibbi, in which one of the thesis was "no matter who wins a presidential election, "it doesn't really matter that much"  That was one of those moments where everything clicked for me.  I hold a Bachelors Degree in Political Science, but 16 years after earning that degree, I now sit back, and enjoy the entertainment.  Whether Romney or Obama win, my life will not change, hardly a single iota.  Both the democrat and republican party are beholden to the same special interests, and there isn't that much that can change.  So why do I even care?

Everything in presidential politics is a crapshoot, heck John Roberts a (W nominee) upheld so called Obama Care as constitutional , he is the David Souter, or Earl Warren of our time.  So here's why I am for the second presidential election voting for the democratic ticket:  I'm an off the charts social liberal, I hate abortion, and want to find ways to reduce unwanted pregnancy, but I'm pro choice.  I am pro Euthanasia, and think that Dr. Jack Kevorkian was a good man.  I am all for Gay Rights and I believe that same sex couples should be allowed to be married.

This Guy?  

Or this guy?  (Who knows?  it doesn't really matter that much!)

But, I am a moderate fiscal conservative, yes I  am for an extension of the Bush Tax Cuts, but I would absolutely pay an extra five, heck even ten thousand more per year if we had universal single payer healthcare, and the rest of it could go to rebuild our infrastructure.  Lets double the lanes on our freeways here in So Cal!  So Barack Obama has a better chance of doing that, but folks I am not holding my breath!  

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Killer Whales do what they do Part 2

A picture is really worth a thousand words, isn't it folks?  When this incident occured in 2006 at Sea World San Diego, I remember reading about it, and I remember Sea Worlds spin on it.  The whale dragged the trainer underwater multiple times; once for  a minute, and once for 40 seconds.  Sea World said something to the effect that "sometimes whales get in a bad mood"  But when you watch this video, you truly see everything that happened.  Shamu grabs the trainer by his foot and thrashes around with him underwater a few times, the look on the trainers face is amazing, he is remaining calm, holding down panic, not trying to escape to excite the whale.  At the end of the ordeal, he swims to his tail, and when the whale looks the other way, he sprint/swims to the dock, only to look back and see the whale charging after him and trying to get over the net.  At this point, with a burst of adrenaline he leaps up and collapses on his broken foot whilst hurtling himself to safety.

Absolutely amazing.  The video is on the internet in multiple places should you care to google it, the best place I have found for the unedited version that was just released today

Right Here

Here Shamu has the trainer by his foot, there is no escape, it's amazing he let the guy live

can't imagine what was going through the trainers mind at this point

Again, as I posted here years ago, what do people expect?  These whales are meant to be cursing in pods up in the pacific northwest, not confined to small tanks and made to perform circus tricks, it's amazing these things didn't happen more often.  (Since Tillikum killed the trainer in florida a couple years ago, it is no longer permitted to have trainers in the water)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Mountain Lion

Read all about Apples next version of their Mac OS on my tech blog 

Thursday, July 19, 2012

CERN, the Higgs Boson, and the closing of the Gaps

God of the Gaps is a classic tool used by theists and mystics over the millennium that goes somewhat like this:  Whenever there is a certain gap in human understanding "god  is responsible, or thor, or 'insert deity here'"   We don't know the answer, therefore it must be God.

When I was in high school one of my church friends and I had a discussion about God and how he is present in the universe.  One of his points was that scientists had no idea what most of the universe was made up of, back then they called it "Dark Matter"   This dark matter is a field where all particles pass through(the Higgs Field) , quarks with names like "up" "down" "charm" and "strange"  Higgs posited a boson that exists which turns mass to matter.  But the only way science can determine this is to build the worlds largest atom smasher; the colossal "Large Hadron Collider" which cost 13 billion dollars.  After millions of annihilations in the LHC enough data was collected to posit that a Higgs Boson "very likely exists"

So what does it mean?  Well it seems to indicate that a very large mystery about our universe is now explained as a natural phenomenon.  And therefore has nothing to do with religious superstition.  I predict that the LHC will further improve our understanding of how the universe came to be.

So my friends a huge Gap is now closed.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Baseball versus Hockey

Those of you who know me know that in the past 3 years or so I have been enraptured by the awesomeness that is the NHL.  I went from knowing almost nothing about the sport, to being able to know terms like pinching, forecheck, back check, wrist shot, slap shot, one timer, top shelf etc.  The game is breathtakingly exciting, many games are very close, and every shot on goal is like a mini heart attack of awesomeness.

So what happened to Baseball?  After all this is the sport I was raised with, and know inside and out.  I understand everything that is going on on the field and it is a great game, moving chess, so to speak...but it is so much different then hockey.   So let me compare the two:

Baseball is a beautiful game to watch, it is on the surface a leisurely game, and to some it can seem kind of boring.  But if you care to get to get into it, there are a thousand little things happening between every pitch thrown, every situation that arises involves the subtle routine of the players trying to out think each other, out guess each other.  It is unique in that it has no clock, all of its managers and coaches wear the same uniform as their players, and they play the game every single day.  162 games a year is a punishing schedule.  Ken Burns documentary summed it up very well in saying that baseball is a leisurely game that demands blinding speed.  The joy of baseball is in the anticipation.

Hockey on the other hand is hyper kinetic.  You never have to wait for action because its always happening at brilliant breathtaking speed.  Players propel themselves upwards of 15 MPH on razor sharp metal skates at such high levels of execration that nobody except the goal tenders are usually on the ice for more than about 2 minutes.   The action is so quick that to the un initiated its almost a shock. "I can't see the puck!"  Some may complain because of the speed happening in front of them.  The excitement and thrill of the NHL is the constant shots on goal, seeing the play develop, and if you are lucky enough to see Anze Kopitar in person you just might see something almost superhuman on any given night at Staples Center.  And lets not forget the hits:  The NHL is the most punishing sport in pro sports today, more so then the NFL.  And last but certainly not least is the fighting.  This is the only sport that self polices.  If somebody cheap shots your guy, well then it is the job of your goon to drop the gloves and fight him!

So what sport is my favorite?  Well that's easy, 6 months out of the year it's baseball, and the other 6?  Hockey.


Homosexuality is natural, it is perfectly fine.  Millions of people on the planet today are gay including Anderson Cooper (publicly out)

And arguably the most powerful Gay man in the world, Apple CEO Tim Cook (not yet publicly out, but gay)

Society progresses, many people have no problem with the fact that people are gay, but there are a few exceptions:   namely the evangelical Christian right.  
Unfortunately this group of people that is the majority of folks in the US, continues to use their power to persecute those in the minority, whether it be spreading lies in the prop 8 campaign, or spewing hate. The Bible says a lot of things:  In Leviticus for example it says the following "If a man lies with a man, it is an abomination, they shall be put to death, for their blood shall be upon them."  Riiiight, so good bible believing Christians should advocate killing gay people?  Fair question right?  I myself do not claim to be a bible believer so therefore i am exempt from this proclamation .  I personally feel that it is wrong to kill people for being gay, but that's just me, maybe I'm nicer then god?  

Homosexuality is not a choice, just as being born with blue eyes is not a choice, or being born with genes that make you start to go bald at age 27 is not a choice (yes that's me)  

I wish Anderson Cooper, and Tim Cook all the best regards and goodwill possible in this life, I believe they, and every gay person should have all equal rights that hetrosexuals enjoy.

Grabbaggar is Back!!

The Blog is now unlocked, and once again a living breathing thing.  Brother Mike and I were hanging out, B.S. ing with each other tonight and I was reading him some previous posts that I had written.  Folks let me tell you, there were some great and funny posts!  (Humble Brag) I had fenced off my blog life to funnel solely into my tech blog found at, but I want to get back in the game!  Grabbaggar is back and folks, we have a lot to talk about!  First let me give you an update on some of the things that you as previous fans of the blog may be interested in:

  • I am still an Atheist (defined as someone who has a lack of belief in a supernatural deity:  incidentally all my readers are atheists of some sort, you might be an atheist about Mithras, Krishna, Xenu, Visnhu, Zeus, or Jupiter.  Yes I agree with you, I am an atheist about all those deitys, but I am also an atheist with regards to "Yahew" you see folks I take my Atheism "one god further" then you perhaps do.
  • I am going to vote for Obama (But if the Republican party would stop catering to the evangelicals who only care about two issues:  abortion, and gayness, I may once again vote for a GOP candidate)  I am fiscally conservative and off the charts socially liberal
  • I still think that if you are willing to swim in a tank with a 14000 pound Killer Whale, that every once in a while that whale may kill you (can't blame the whale for being a whale)  
  • I have no problem with Peformance Enhancing Drugs (PEDS) in sports.  Sports aint life and death, it's there for our entertainment.

I remain heartbroken over the death of Steve Jobs

I look forward to your great comments as you have done in the past!  Thank you for sticking with me!