Saturday, November 14, 2009
Friday, November 13, 2009
Thursday, November 12, 2009
Will Phillips isn't like other boys his age.
For one thing, he's smart. Scary smart. A student in the West Fork School District in Washington County, he skipped a grade this year, going directly from the third to the fifth. When his family goes for a drive, discussions are much more apt to be about Teddy Roosevelt and terraforming Mars than they are about Spongebob Squarepants and what's playing on Radio Disney.
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Read the Article
"Delta 351, you have traffic at 10 o'clock, 6 miles!"
"Give us another hint! We have digital watches!"
Tower: "TWA 2341...for noise abatement turn right 45 Degrees."
TWA 2341: "Center, we are at 35,000 feet. How much noise can we make up here?"
Tower: "Sir, have u ever heard the noise a 747 makes when it hits a 727?"
From an unknown aircraft waiting in a very long takeoff queue:
"I'm very bored!"
Ground Traffic Control:
"Last aircraft transmitting, identify yourself immediately!"
Unknown aircraft: "I said I was very bored, not stupid!"
O'Hare Approach Control to a 747:
"United 329 heavy, your traffic is a Fokker, one o'clock, three miles, Eastbound."
United 329: "Approach, I've always wanted to say this...I've got the little Fokker in sight."
A student became lost during a solo cross-country flight. While attempting to locate the aircraft on radar, ATC asked,
"What was your last known position?"
Student: "When I was number one for takeoff."
A DC-10 had come in a little hot and thus had an exceedingly long roll out after touching down. San Jose Tower Noted:
"American 751, make a hard right turn at the end of the runway, if you are able. If you are not able, take the Guadeloupe exit off Highway 101, make a right at the traffic light and return to the airport."
A Pan Am 727 flight, waiting for start clearance in Munich overheard the following: Lufthansa (in German):
"Ground, what is our start clearance time?"
Ground (in English):
"If you want an answer you must speak in English."
Lufthansa (in English):
"I am a German, flying a German airplane, in Germany . Why must I speak English?"
Unknown voice from another plane (in a beautiful British accent): "Because you lost the bloody war!"
Tower: "Eastern 702, cleared for takeoff, contact Departure on frequency 124.7"
Eastern 702: "Tower, Eastern 702 switching to Departure. By the way, after we lifted off we saw some kind of dead animal on the far end of the runway."
Tower: "Continental 635, cleared for takeoff behind Eastern 702, contact Departure on frequency 124.7...Did you copy that report from Eastern 702?"
Continental 635: "Continental 635, cleared for takeoff, roger; and yes, we copied Eastern...we've already notified our caterers."
One day the pilot of a Cherokee 180 was told by the tower to hold short of the active runway while a DC-8 landed. The DC-8 landed, rolled out, turned around, and taxied back past the Cherokee. Some quick-witted comedian in the DC-8 crew got on the radio and said,
"What a cute little plane. Did you make it all by yourself?"
The Cherokee pilot, not about to let the insult go by, came back with a real zinger:
"I made it out of DC-8 parts. Another landing like yours and I'll have enough parts for another one."
The German air controllers at Frankfurt Airport are renowned as a short-tempered lot. They not only expect one to know one's gate parking location, but how to get there without any assistance from them. So it was with some amusement that we (a Pan Am 747) listened to the following exchange between Frankfurt ground control and a British Airways 747, call sign Speedbird 206.
Speedbird 206: " Frankfurt , Speedbird 206! Clear of active runway."
Ground: "Speedbird 206. Taxi to gate Alpha One-Seven."
The BA 747 pulled onto the main taxiway and slowed to a stop.
Ground: "Speedbird, do you not know where you are going?"
Speedbird 206: "Stand by, Ground, I'm looking up our gate location now."
Ground (with quite arrogant impatience): "Speedbird 206, have you not been to Frankfurt before?"
Speedbird 206 (coolly): "Yes, twice in 1944, but it was dark...and I didn't land."
While taxiing at London 's Airport, the crew of a US Air flight departing for Ft. Lauderdale made a wrong turn and came nose to nose with a United 727. An irate female ground controller lashed out at the US Air crew, screaming:
"US Air 2771, where the hell are you going? I told you to turn right onto Charlie taxiway! You turned right on Delta! Stop right there. I know it's difficult for you to tell he difference between C and D, but get it right!"
Continuing her rage to the embarrassed crew, she was now shouting hysterically:
"God! Now you've screwed everything up! It'll take forever to sort this out! You stay right there and don't move till I tell you to! You can expect progressive taxi instructions in about half an hour, and I want you to go exactly where I tell you, when I tell you, and how I tell you! You got that, US Air 2771?"
"Yes, ma'am," the humbled crew responded.
Naturally, the ground control communications frequency fell terribly silent after the verbal bashing of US Air 2771. Nobody wanted to chance engaging the irate ground controller in her current state of mind. Tension in every cockpit out around Gatwick was definitely running high. Just then, an unknown pilot broke the silence and keyed his microphone, asking:
"Wasn't I married to you once?"
NOTE: The following quotations have been collected from a variety of sources ... from e-mail notes and signatures, bulletin boards, the ASCD SmartBrief and from other sources, as well, over some time.
Last week, when asked about Glenn Beck calling President Obama "racist," Rupert Murdoch, chairman of Fox News Channel's parent company (News Corp) said "if you actually assess what he was talking about, |Beck| was right."
On Tuesday, after his endorsement of Beck's race-baiting started to draw attention, Murdoch claimed, through a spokesperson, that he didn't mean he agrees with Beck. It's ridiculous -- what else could he have possibly meant?
Murdoch calls the shots at Fox News, and he's just made it clear that Fox's problem with race starts in his office. Now that he's been caught, he's trying to play dumb -- he doesn't want to be held accountable for Beck's rhetoric, but he won't denounce or stop it either.
It won't work, if we stand up. Join me in telling Murdoch he has a choice -- he can stand by the fact that he agrees with Glenn Beck; or he can tell us why he doesn't and what he's going to do about it. If enough of us call him out, we can create a powerful conversation about Fox's race-baiting that will help us hold them accountable at the highest level.
Please join me in signing the petition to Murdoch, and ask your friends and family to do the same:
While Beck is the worst offender on the Fox News Channel, the network has a long, deep history of engaging in inflammatory racial rhetoric: attacking Black leaders, Black culture, and Black institutions.[3,4,5] And a number of Murdoch's recent business decisions suggest that he is consciously building a media empire -- at Fox News and elsewhere -- that attracts viewers by appealing to racial fear and paranoia.
A month ago, Murdoch put Don Imus (fired from MSNBC for his infamous "nappy headed hos" comment) back on television on the Fox Business Network. And a few weeks ago, Murdoch personally fired Marc Lamont Hill -- one of Fox News' few black commentators -- in response to a racially charged smear campaign led by a News Corp shareholder, who said Hill has "reputation of defending cop killers and racists."
Holding Murdoch, Beck and Fox News accountable
When Murdoch publicly endorsed some of Glenn Beck's most inflammatory comments, it seemed he was making it very clear that he approves of Fox's race-baiting. Now, apparently after realizing how damaging it would be for him to publicly support the rhetoric that cost Glenn Beck 80 advertisers, he's trying to backpedal. But Murdoch is not willing to distance himself from Beck either. He knows that he could face a backlash from Fox's viewers if he appears critical of the racially charged programming that attracts many of them to the network in the first place.
So Murdoch wants to have it both ways -- he wants to build a network that makes money by pandering to racial fear and paranoia, but he doesn't want Fox to be seen as cable's home for race-baiting.
We can't let him get away with it. Murdoch made a mistake by speaking too openly about what he and his media organizations stand for. He rarely makes mistakes like this, and we need to seize the opportunity to expose Fox's problem with race.
It starts by demanding that Murdoch explain what he meant, and be clear about whether or not race-baiting is part of the program at Fox. He may or may not respond, but if enough of us speak out, we can create a conversation that makes it clear who is ultimately responsible for Fox's race-baiting. It's just one step in starting to bring some accountability to the leadership of Fox News and News Corp -- but it's an important one.
Join me in calling out Rupert Murdoch, and ask your friends and family to do the same. It just takes a minute:
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
An estimated 50 million people in the southern half of Brazil are without electricity tonight as the massive blackout has triggered crime alerts in several states.
The country's largest cities, including Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro among others, were left with no illumination or traffic lights due to the outage late Tuesday, which the energy ministry said was caused by an undetermined problem at the country's biggest hydroelectric plant, Itaipu, on the border with Paraguay. One radio station, Bandnews, said an estimated 50 million people -- one quarter of Brazil's population -- were affected. The blackout hit at 10:15 pm (0015 GMT Wednesday). The southern states of Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Minas Gerais, Espirito Santo, Mato Grosso do Sul and parts of the central state of Goias and the federal district of Brasilia were plunged into night. Police in Sao Paulo and Rio called on the cities' residents to not go out into the darkened streets to avoid the risk of accidents and an upsurge in already prolific street crime. Off-duty and vacationing officers were told to report to their posts. In Sao Paulo and its suburbs, an agglomeration of 20 million inhabitants, streets were illuminated only by the lights of cars and from a few buildings -- including hospitals -- that had their own generators.Just three days ago, CBS' 60 Minutes reported that a similar blackout in 2007 was created by computer hackers, a claim hotly denied by Brazilian investigators.
BELOW: Twitter user RodrigoBNO sends out this shot of Rio's Copacabana beach.
Civilization can only revive when there shall come into being in a number of individuals a new tone of mind, independent of the prevalent one among the crowds, and in opposition to it -- a tone of mind which will gradually win influence over the collective one, and in the end determine its character. Only an ethical movement can rescue us from barbarism, and the ethical comes into existence only in individuals.
--- Albert Schweitzer
Speaking to a panel ironically titled "Smart Leadership in Difficult Times," CSU Chancellor Charles Reed last week outlined his dystopian vision for the future of education in California which includes, among other things, larger teaching loads for faculty and the elimination of 12th grade.
The panel kicked off with a discussion of budget issues, during which Reed was asked about criticism that he had not lobbied hard enough for proper funding for the CSU.
"Well, you know what?” Reed responded. “There isn't any money in Sacramento.”
The Chancellor then went on to discuss new ways to try to manage his way out of the crisis rather than actually fighting for the money the system needs. His ideas included having faculty teach one more course per semester (“the efficiency of that is tremendous,” he argued) and eliminating the 12th grade (“the biggest waste of time” for many students, he claimed).
To view the article, go to: http://calfac.org/allpdf/newspaper_articles/2009/CHE_110509_Reed.pdf
Monday, November 9, 2009
916 U.S. Military Fatalities in Afghanistan
31,557 U.S. Military Maimed in Iraq (source: DoD Update as of October 31, 2009)
102,451 Iraqis Reported Killed (source: Iraq Body Count)
1,339,771 Iraqis Reported Killed (source: justforeignpolicy.org)
Sunday, November 8, 2009
Where Are Our Manners?!
By Rebecca Brown, Divine Caroline
As I crammed myself onto a crowded train this morning, I noticed there was a very pregnant woman standing near me, jammed in tightly and hanging on for dear life. I looked at the passengers sitting in the seats that are supposed to be surrendered to the elderly, physically challenged, and other people who need to sit, and all of them were listening to iPods. Most of them were also texting or reviewing email, one person was reading on a Kindle, and two people were watching movies. Not one of them even looked up; everyone was too absorbed in what they were listening to, reading, or watching to even notice the protruding belly and flushed face of the pregnant passenger.
Over the past few years, there have been countless discussions on minding our manners within our new modes of communication. Is it rude to text someone and ask him on a date? When is it appropriate to forward an email? Do we befriend someone on a social networking site we’ve only met once?
But while we’ve been debating the dos and don’ts of technology etiquette, it appears that many of us have forgotten some of the old school manners that our parents, grandparents, and teachers taught us–manners that have nothing to do with a keyboard or a monitor, but have everything to do with the long-forgotten Golden Rule. Maybe technology has eroded our brains so much that we can never go back to those golden days, but there are a few simple courtesies that I’d like to see make a comeback.