The Saudi oil attacks – read the map

I note that Yemeni rebels have claimed responsibility for attacking Saudi Arabian oil refining facilities using (presumably) Iranian-manufactured and -supplied drones over the weekend.  I’m not so sure.  Consider this map of the region, with the area of the drone attacks highlighted by a red marker. That’s an awful long way from Yemen, where the Houthi rebels are fighting.  What’s more, the Yemeni border area is well covered by radar, with missiles and fighter aircraft on permanent standby to intercept ballistic missiles and other attacks launched from rebel territory.  To suggest that the drones flew all that way north, penetrating all those

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If at first you don’t succeed, lie, lie again

The brouhaha over a (very tenuously) alleged “assault” by Supreme Court Justice Kavanaugh, reported by the New York Times over the weekend, is utterly ridiculous and nonsensical.  It also exposes that newspaper (yet again) as a hollow shell of its former self, a propaganda organ rather than a serious journalistic endeavor.  Consider: The alleged “victim” of the “assault” has no recollection of it ever occurring, and refuses to discuss it.  As another reporter noted, “Omitting this fact from the New York Times story is one of the worst cases of journalistic malpractice in recent memory.”  The newspaper later updated its story to reflect this, but by then

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Sunday morning music

Here’s something rather different, courtesy of Australian reader Snoggeramus.  It’s the famous “Largo al factotum” from Rossini’s opera “The Barber of Seville” . . . played on a rubber chicken! So help me, I’ll never be able to get my hair cut again with a straight face . . . Peter

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On the road again

Miss D. and I are headed for the Texas Panhandle, to spend time with our friend Alma Boykin and take in a little local culture at the Tri-State Fair and Rodeo.  (Yeeeeeee-haw!)  We’ll be back home tomorrow evening.  Please say a prayer for traveling mercies for us, if you’re so inclined. I’ve queued up a post for tomorrow morning.  For more reading matter, please visit the bloggers listed in my sidebar.  They do good work, too! Peter

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Restoring marriage

The problems inherent in marriage are discussed in an article at National Review.  The excerpt below highlights many of the issues they discuss, and I’ve highlighted one paragraph in bold, underlined text for further discussion. Who or what is to blame for this unraveling of marriage and the complete breakdown of trust in Rob’s world, and in the world of so many white, working-class people like him? Economic instability is most immediately evident … Less visible but more dramatic is the role of social alienation. At least two generations have now come of age in the aftermath of the divorce revolution, and

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You want an earworm? I got your earworm right here!

In e-mail correspondence with an overseas contact, whose native language is not English, he asked at one point “What is an ‘earworm‘?”  Well, of course, I volunteered to provide an example!  As a matter of fact, it’s one I blogged about in 2015, when I first encountered it.  (The comments at that earlier blog post are worth reading, too.) At any rate, here’s Austrian “DJ Ötzi” with his (in)famous “Burger Dance”, which went gold in Germany and hit #1 on the charts there (why, I don’t know!).  His teenybopper audience appear to be singing right along, and getting into the spirit of the

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Another interesting read for SF geeks

Alma Boykin is no stranger to readers of these pages.  She’s a friend to Miss D. and I in meatspace as well as cyberspace, and we’ve enjoyed her books for years.  (We’ll be spending time with her this weekend.) Her latest novel in the “Colplatschki Chronicles” series is an interesting one.  “Fountains of Mercy” is the eighth in the series, but is actually a prequel to the other books.  It might appear at first to be a dystopian novel with science fiction overtones, but it’s far from the run-of-the-mill in both genres.  Alma makes things much more technically interesting, and given her

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Combat resupply gets easier – and cheaper

The JPADS GPS-guided cargo parachute system has been in service with the US armed forces for some years.  It’s proven very useful in remote terrain in places like Afghanistan, where resupply over long distances is expensive and dangerous. Now it looks like something better – at least for smaller loads – is on the horizon. Yates Electrospace unveiled at the Defense & Security Equipment International (DSEI) show in London a larger variant of its unmanned cargo glider, the Silent Arrow GD-2000, that can fly with a gross weight of 907kg (2,000lb). The US-based company says it will start full-rate production in October and has

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Nature, red in tooth and claw

Tennyson’s famous phrase was (and still is) very familiar to those growing up in Africa, and I daresay in places like Alaska and other wildernesses too.  It’s the simple fact of life.  Nature is predatory and ruthless, and almost all animals die through being killed and eaten by others, sooner or later.  Those who die from other causes end up being eaten anyway! I was reminded of that by this photograph, found at SNAFU’s place.  Clickit to biggit. The Nile crocodile is endemic in Africa, with uncounted numbers infesting that continent’s rivers and lakes.  (Some idiot’s even released a few into the wild in Florida!) 

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