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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

May 2010 News Factoids


"When Reagan became president [in 1981] manufacturing was 20 percent of G.D.P. Today, manufacturing is 11 percent of G.D.P."
~~ per radio talk show host Thom Hartmann

"In 1965 [when Medicare became law], health care consumed just 6 percent of U.S. economic output; today, the figure is 18 percent."
~~ per New Yorker Magazine, April 2010

"In 1956, 56 percent of profits in the U.S. economy derived from manufacturing, while 8.3 percent came from the financial sector. in 2007, manufacturing produced 10 percent of profits, while the financial sector produced 26 percent of profits." per The Washington Spectator

Minor Factoid: Sales at my Amazon online bookstores dropped sharply in April; I made more that month from the solar panel array in my back yard (after zeroing out my electrical usage) than I did from my websites.

While the 290,000 jobs added to U.S. payrolls in April are a good sign – after all, Dubya's policies were eliminating 500,000 and more jobs each month at the end of his term as President – the problem is that 800,000 new workers enter the U.S, job market each month. While Barack Obama's Stimulus Package has corrected the one statistic, there has not been nearly enough repairs to the economy that was inherited from Bush for anyone to breathe easy.

"The Social Security trust fund is projected to show a surplus of close to $100 billion in 2010 and will remain in the black until after 2020."
~~ Dean Baker, Campaign For America's Future { full article }


U.S. energy consumption is 44 percent coal, 24 percent natural gas, 20 percent nuclear, 7 percent hydroelectric, and 5 percent other (including wind & solar).
~~ per Time Magazine pie chart, Feb 2010


"Senate Republicans used the filibuster to delay 80 percent of legislation in 2009." per Time Magazine

"Forty-four percent of members of Congress are millionaires. Of the 237 millionaire legislators, at least seven have a net worth greater than $100 million." per Center For Responsive Politics

ARIZONA, PART 1: The Arizona Legislature passed and Gov. Jan Brewer signed a law requiring police officers to question anyone who they suspect of being in the country illegally and to require proof of their immigration or citizenship status. Liberals were appalled, since many police jurisdictions in Arizona are already practicing racial profiling.

ARIZONA, PART 2: On the same day, the National Marijuana Policy Project announced their plan to gather the minimum 150,000 signatures required by July to get an initiative on the November 2010 ballot to legalize medical marijuana in Arizona. The local organization's website is

Interesting to note the election results of the May 18th U.S. primaries. While each race is now a battle for November, the numbers of votes in the four significant races were strongly pro-Democrat:
Arkansas Senate primary Dems 326,187 & GOP 139,303
Kentucky Senate primary Dems 513,659 & GOP 348,680
Pennsylvania Senate primary Dems 1,041,971 & GOP 815,432
Democrat Mark Critz beat Republican Tim Burns to fill out the term of the late Jack Murtha [PA-12], Dems 71,684 to GOP 59,476


India and Bangladesh have long fought about sovereignty over New Moore island in the Bay of Bengal; the matter became moot in March 2010 when the 1.4 square mile landform was immersed by rising seas (another clear result of global warming & climate change).

"Insurers are probably the only people I know who are more worried about climate change than the environmentalists ... The [insurer] companies know that the weather patterns are changing. And they know that there's real risk out there."
~~ Joel Ario, chair of the Climate Task Force of the Natl Assn of Insurance Commissioners


Halliburton/Dresser Industries, the scourge of the invasion & occupation of Iraq, screwed up the installation of a concrete plug where the Deepwater Horizon attached to the seabottom – just twenty hours before the explosion that set off the worst oil spill in history. { full article }

While the servants of the Oligarchy blame each other at the Congressional show trial about the tragic mess in the Gulf of Mexico, fault is quite easily assigned: call it the Republican-B.P. Megaspill, so that our grandchildren know who helped kill the biosphere.


Modern Consumerism: Earth Day expanded into Earth Month, and Target stores held a big Earth Month Sale.

"In the U.S., there are more arrests for marijuana possession each year than for all violent crimes combined." per Marijuana Policy Project

"If the same book is available at Amazon in both paper and e-book formats, 40 percent of their customers now order the electronic version."
~~ per New Yorker Magazine, April 2010

"There are 2.3 million prisoners in the U.S, or 753 per 1000,000 – the highest rate in the world." per Time Magazine

Human population on Planet Earth has increased over 10,000 years from roughly four million to nearly seven billion today, and is expected to add another billion humans in the next 15 years.

"Worldwide, paper consists of from one-third to one-half of the content of landfills."
~~ David Owen

Copyright 2010 by G.E. Nordell, all rights reserved

Monday, May 17, 2010

Gulf Megaspill

While the servants of the Oligarchy blame each other at the Congressional show trial about the tragic mess in the Gulf of Mexico, fault is quite easily assigned: Call it the Republican-B.P. Megaspill, so that our grandchildren know who helped kill the biosphere.

Sunday, May 02, 2010

May 2010 Quotations

"Someone once said life is hard. I say, compared to what?"
~~ Harvey Mackay

"Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony."
~~ Mahatma Gandhi [1869-1948]

“There are four boxes to use in the defense of liberty: soap, ballot, jury, ammo. Use in that order.”
~~ Ed Howdershelt

“The cure for writer’s cramp is writer’s block.”
~~ Iñigo de Leon

"They muddy the water, to make it seem deep."
~~ Friedrich Nietzsche [1844-1900]

"Work saves us from three great evils: boredom, vice, and need."
~~ Voltaire [1694-1778]

"Avoid the crowd. Do your own thinking independently. Be a chess player, not the chess piece."
~~ Ralph Charell

"It is easy in the world to live after the world's opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude."
~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson [1803-82]

"Don't tell your problems to people: eighty percent don't care; and the other twenty percent are glad you have them."
~~ Lou Holtz

"Love is something you do, not something you feel."
~~ Gordon Atkinson

"Think in the morning, act in the noon, read in the evening, and sleep at night."
~~ William Blake [1757–1827]

"The only thing high-definition television will do is provide sharper pictures of the garbage."
~~ George Carlin [1937-2008]

"People need trouble – a little frustration to sharpen the spirit on, toughen it. Artists do; I don't mean you need to live in a rat hole or gutter, but you have to learn fortitude, endurance. Only vegetables are always happy."
~~ William Faulkner [1897-1962]

"Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat."
~~ Theodore Roosevelt [1858-1919]

"Becoming the champion is often the luck of the draw, but being a contender, a somebody with promise, is about hard work and character."
~~ Robert Lipsyte

"Part of being sane is being a little bit crazy."
~~ Janet Long

"Always listen to experts. They'll tell you what can't be done and why. Then do it."
~~ Robert A. Heinlein [1907-88]

"The way to succeed is to double your failure rate."
~~ Thomas J. Watson [1874-1956], founder of I.B.M.

"College isn't the place to go for ideas."
~~ Helen Keller [1880-1968]

"It is never too late to start early."
~~ Anonymous

"Plans are only good intentions unless they immediately degenerate into hard work."
~~ Peter Drucker [1909-2005]

"Whether you think you can, or that you can't, you are usually right."
~~ Henry Ford [1863-1947]

"If you don't know where you're going, you'll probably end up someplace else."
~~ Yogi Berra

"If you always do what you have always done then you'll always have what you've already got."
~~ Anthony Robbins

"Science is everything we understand well enough to explain to a computer. Art is everything else."
~~ Donald Knuth

"Don't worry about people stealing an idea. If it's original, you will have to ram it down their throats."
~~ Howard Aiken [1900-73]

"He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life."
~~ Muhammad Ali

"If everything's under control, you're going too slow."
~~ racecar driver Mario Andretti

"Even if you are on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there."
~~ Will Rogers [1879-1935]

"Even when people are more successful than they had imagined, nothing is ever achieved without giving something up."
~~ Dr. Judith M. Bardwick

"Education is not the filling of a pail, it's the lighting of a fire."
~~ Irish poet William Butler Yeats [1865-1939]

Prudens quaestio dimidium scientiae
(To know what to ask is already to know half)
~~ Aristotle [384-322 B.C.E.]

"Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion."
~~ Cyril Northcote Parkinson [1909-93] (aka "Parkinson's Law")

"Chance favors the trained mind."
~~ Louis Pasteur [1822-95]

"The value of the average conversation could be enormously improved by the constant use of four simple words: 'I do not know.'"
~~ André Maurois [1885-1967]

Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur
(Whatever is said in Latin sounds profound)
~~ Anonymous

"If you believe the doctors, nothing is wholesome; if you believe the theologians, nothing is innocent; if you believe the military, nothing is safe."
~~ Lord Salisbury [1830-1903]

"One machine can do the work of fifty ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man."
~~ Elbert Hubbard [1859-1915]

"The sooner you fall behind, the more time you will have to catch up."
~~ comedian Steven Wright

"As an adolescent I aspired to lasting fame, I craved factual certainty, and I thirsted for a meaningful vision of human life – so I became a scientist. This is like becoming an archbishop so you can meet girls."
~~ Matt Cartmill, PhD

"At age 65, this gettin' old thing is gettin' old."
~~ G.E. Nordell

"Science is like sex: sometimes something useful comes out, but that is not the reason we are doing it."
~~ Richard P. Feynman [1918-88]

"The bigger the goal, the bigger the obstacle. The bigger the obstacle, the bigger the achievement. So blame the failure not on obstacles but on the absence of relentless effort"
~~ Dr. Ravi Batra

"There is an art to science, and science in art; the two are not enemies, but different aspects of the whole."
~~ Isaac Asimov [1920-92]

"This is my way. What is your way? THE way doesn't exist."
~~ Friedrich Nietzsche [1844-1900]

"640K ought to be enough for anybody."
~~ Bill Gates, in 1981

"Hopelessness springs eternal."
~~ Ben Greenman

"Work is much more fun than fun."
~~ Noël Coward [1899-1973]

"In The Field, there is no Soap Opera; Soap Opera occurs only In The Stands. And the same for Gossip."
~~ G.E. Nordell

"To be a writer one learns to live like one."
~~ Saul Bellow [1915-2005]

{each set of posted quotations are then posted at the Working Minds website, alphabetical by author}