Thursday, Nov 27th

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You are here Editorials Alex Baer

Alex Baer

Shaking Hands, High Overhead

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You think things are scary now with drone aircraft, give it a few years:  You may find yourself being plucked from the ground and carried aloft, or abruptly instructed by loudspeaker to shake hands with The Man, hovering silently, just overhead.

Engineers at Drexel University have a grant from the National Science Foundation to see if "dexterous limbs" can be successfully added to drones.

The "Mobile Manipulating UAVs" (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) as they are being called, once developed, would be capable of performing "active near ground tasks."

Last Updated on Friday, 03 August 2012 17:59 Read more...

Motion Carries! And the Winner Is...

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We nonpartisan, equal-opportunity critics of political office holders, and the cuckoo process by which self-governance is currently practiced in this country, have, around our own meeting table, been chewing on a particular cud, in between beers, for some months:  What to call Republicans that is not as obscene, foul, or belligerent as most everyone would actually like.

Call it a party game that we've been enjoying, somewhat perversely.  Republicans started it, insisting on repeatedly calling their opponents the "Democrat Party," making sure they really leaned, vocally, on the "-rat" at the end.

It's all so childish, of course,  as is answering back in kind -- which makes it all the more irresistible to tickle, and such rich fodder to tackle, for our discussions down at Hack's BBQ Shack.

Last Updated on Thursday, 02 August 2012 18:30 Read more...

Getting Attention at Any Cost

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It certainly sounded outrageous:  A man was given 30 days in jail for having water on his property.  It certainly sounded like local government had slipped a major cog in its normally dull wheel, shambling off into abuse.

A few minutes later, after an online search and scanning various written pieces, it was far less certain what was really going on.

The initial piece was shrill in its tone.  Worse, it left out key information:  The man had dammed up a creek flow, a tributary to a river, without permission to do so.  He had done that before, and had done it again.  The first time, he received probation from the court; the second time, he drew 30 days in jail, to help get his attention.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 01 August 2012 13:08 Read more...

Debunking Skunks from My Bunker

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Conspiracy theorists get no respect from skeptics -- strange, from self-avowed logicians who should know even broken clocks are right, once or twice a day.

Could it be that fact and objective reality has slipped so far in basic respect and understanding that innuendo and insinuation totally rule today's world?  After all, one person's conspiracy nut is another's leading -- although not yet lauded -- genius, fans of equivalencies and possibilities might say.

To some extent, it appears everyone's right.  Reality is getting much more difficult to sift and sort out, with so many surreal and previously unbelievable developments at all levels.

Last Updated on Friday, 27 July 2012 15:58 Read more...

PUR Public Relations

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Getting a straight answer in this world anymore is next door to impossible:  You can ring the doorbell for Fact all day and night, but, only Spin will come to the door.

The latest case in point:  writing a corporation with a helpful suggestion, where everyone wins. You already know how this turns out, I'll bet.  For the record, and to help flesh out your imaginations, some detail:

We live out in the country, in an area where our drinking water needs filtering from various muds and murk.  We use the handy (but expensive-seeming, for our monthly budget) replaceable-cartridge water filters from PUR.  (Short commercial:  They do a pretty good job.)

Last Updated on Thursday, 26 July 2012 10:44 Read more...

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