November 01, 2006

Other: The Good, The Bad, and The Damn Weird

Another "around-the-bases" post today:


Another day at work, another argument with a co-worker. This time it started with the movie "Waking Life", which I found to be a fascinating discussion of perception and reality, presented in a very cool way. The co-worker in question suggested instead... "What the *Bleep* Do We Know?", which is a vacuous waste of both brain cells and celuloid. When I mentioned who financed the film (the channeler of a 35,000 year old god from Atlantis - oops, Lemuria now), she said: "What's wrong channeling other beings?" I have to say, my arguments pretty much died at that...


The Republicans use, as one of their recurring advertising slogans, the meme that the Democrats are "out of touch with mainstream America". May I present a "clarification" recently made by the Department of Health and Human Services? They are the lot in charge of the oh-so-successful federaly abstinence-only programs:

"We wanted to remind states they could use these funds not only to target adolescents," Horn said. "It's a reminder."

The reminder was that it was appropriate to use the $50 million fund to target 19-29 year olds. No, really. With the smashing success of the programs targeting youth, this should go over brilliantly with actual adults, don't you think? Come now: you've always wanted these proponents of smaller government to tell you who to bang and when, right?


Where to go after that last story, eh? Well, this is just a little odd note: I'm spent a few days in the past two weeks thinking and talking about 3-ways, 4-ways, gangs and switches, and none of them have anything to do with sex.

I'm taking an electrical wiring course (just for home, nothing professional yet). Electricity, of course, has nothing to do with sex.


How much can preconceived notions sabotage your abilities? Quite a bit, if what this report from the University of British Columbia says stands up - and it looks pretty solid.


In good news against quackery, there's another University report that got my attention, this one from the U. of Western Ontario: twenty out of twenty health food stores had clerks who enthusiastically recommend unproven alternatives to medicine when asked. Why is this good news? Because it might get Health Canada to pick it up a little in regulating claims made by the alties.

Two years ago Health Canada had finally gotten around to creating and enforcing regulations of what can be sold as medicines, and what can be claimed on their labels: up until then, anything sold in a health food store was classified as food, and not subject to the same standards as medicines were, no matter what claim were made. The problem is that the testing takes time, so only around 1,200 of 12,000 products have been tested so far. Still, any step out of ignorance is one I'm happy to take!


Almost swung a deal for an old Moto Guzzi 850T. Couldn't pull it off, though. Would have looked sweet with the sidecar, though.


While hosting the upcoming Skeptics' Circle is keeping me distracted, so are my hordes of undead football payers.

And a little something for Hallowe'en, even if it is a day late...


posted by Thursday at 10:09 pm


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