Culture

Mar 2017

Panicked dolphins vomit from stress as captors try and snatch them from the waters of Japan

–  DailyMail UK

A distressing video shows the moment hunted dolphins vomit from stress trying to escape capture.

The footage comes from Taiji in Japan and shows captors trapping the creatures are trying to remove them from the sea.

The scared animals are manhandled by swimmers in wet-suits as they try and flee.”

…..Much more @ DailyMail

 

 

Feb 2017

Stem Cell Therapy for Stroke Gary Steinberg, Stanford University

– Youtube | Stanford University

More information @ Med.Stanford.edu/neurosurgery

 

Stroke survivors walk again after Stanford injects stem cells in neurotherapy

– Telegraph UK

“Stroke survivors who believed they would be paralysed or need a wheelchair for the rest of their lives are walking and moving again following a ground-breaking stem cell treatment.

18 patients who agreed to allow doctors to drill a hole in their skull and inject stem cells into the damaged part of their brain have made a ‘remarkable’ recovery.

Incredibly, it worked for patients whose strokes had occurred between six months and three years previously. Historically doctors have believed that the brain will no longer regenerate after six months.

But the new therapy essentially turns the adult brain back to an infant brain so that it can rebuild itself.

Scientists at Stanford University School of Medicine believe the therapy could also work for other neurodegenerative conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s and Lou Gehrig’s Disease.

“The remarkable recovery we saw in many of these chronic stroke patients was quite surprising,” said Prof Gary Steinberg, Chair of Neurosurgery at Stanford, who has spent 15 years researching stem cells.

“This wasn’t just ‘they couldn’t move their thumb and now they can’. Patients who were in wheelchairs are walking now. Their ability to move around has recovered visibly. That’s unprecedented.

“The study changes our prior notion that patients can’t recover much more after the first six months following a stroke because the circuits are dead, or irreversibly damaged.

“Clearly the circuits can be resurrected by this treatment and we are still investigating how they are being jump-started.”

The stem cells in question were taken from the bone marrow of two donors. Scientists had previously believed that stem cells could not integrate into the brain to become neurons. But it now appears they secrete powerful chemicals for growth and regeneration which the brain can use to restore function.

“In a simple sense, the stem cell transplant turns the adult brain in a neonatal of infant brain which recovers well after a stroke or other injury,” added Prof Steinberg.

“This could revolutionise our concept of what happens after no only stroke but traumatic brain injury and ever neurodegenerative disorders. We thought these brain circuits were dead and we’ve learned that they’re not.”

All the patients involved in the trial had suffered ischemic strokes where a clot prevents blood getting to the brain, which leads to brain cell death. The procedure involved drilling a small hole in the skull above the damaged area so that SB623 stem cells could be injected at several spots around the edge of the injury.

The patients, who had an average age of 61,  only needed a local anaesthetic and were sent home the following day. Although many complained of initial headaches, because of the surgical procedure, there were no long-term side-effects.

Afterwards they were monitored with blood tests, clinical evaluations and brain imaging. Intriguingly the implanted stem cells do not survive very long in the brain, but recovery continued even after they had vanished.”

….Continue reading more @ Telegraph UK

 

NEUROGENESIS AFTER STROKE

– UCLA | Carmichael Laboratory

 

REPAIRING THE BRAIN AFTER STROKE

“Stroke is the leading cause of adult disability. There are approximately 795,000 strokes per year in the United States. Twenty to 30% of stroke survivors are taken from independence to placement in a nursing home or assisted living environment. Thirty percent of long term stroke survivors cannot walk without assistance. Despite these grave statistics, most stroke patients recover to some degree and the brain does have a limited ability for repair and after stroke.

The goal of the Carmichael laboratory is to identify the mechanisms of recovery after stroke.

We study the cells and molecules that begin to repair the brain after stroke, and the how these are limited or incomplete.

We focus on molecular mechanisms of neural repair that might provide for new therapies to promote recovery in stroke. By combining molecular, genetic, cellular and behavioral studies into a systems biology approach to neural repair after stroke, we hope to develop new molecular therapies for stroke recovery.”

More @ UCLA School of Medicine

Jan 2017

Fedex Hero Breaks up Burning of U.S. Flag in Iowa City | Jan 27

– Youtube

More on flag burning and Texas v. Johnson here @ US Courts . Gov

 

Galileo Galilei

– Biography.com

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Synopsis

“Born on February 15, 1564, in Pisa, Italy, Galileo Galilei was a mathematics professor who made pioneering observations of nature with long-lasting implications for the study of physics. He also constructed a telescope and supported the Copernican theory, which supports a sun-centered solar system. Galileo was accused twice of heresy by the church for his beliefs, and wrote books on his ideas. He died in Arcetri, Italy, on January 8, 1642.

In 1604, Galileo published The Operations of the Geometrical and Military Compass, revealing his skills with experiments and practical technological applications. He also constructed a hydrostatic balance for measuring small objects. These developments brought him additional income and more recognition. That same year, Galileo refined his theories on motion and falling objects, and developed the universal law of acceleration, which all objects in the universe obeyed. Galileo began to express openly his support of the Copernican theory that the earth and planets revolved around the sun. This challenged the doctrine of Aristotle and the established order set by the Catholic Church.

In July 1609, Galileo learned about a simple telescope built by Dutch eyeglass makers, and he soon developed one of his own. In August, he demonstrated it to some Venetian merchants, who saw its value for spotting ships and gave Galileo salary to manufacture several of them. However, Galileo’s ambition pushed him to go further, and in the fall of 1609 he made the fateful decision to turn his telescope toward the heavens. In March 1610, he published a small booklet, The Starry Messenger, revealing his discoveries that the moon was not flat and smooth, but a sphere with mountains and craters. He found Venus had phases like the moon, proving it rotated around the sun. He also discovered Jupiter had revolving moons, which didn’t revolve around the earth.

Soon Galileo began mounting a body of evidence that supported Copernican theory and contradicted Aristotle and Church doctrine. In 1612, he published his Discourse on Bodies in Water, refuting the Aristotelian explanation of why objects float in water, saying that it wasn’t because of their flat shape, but instead the weight of the object in relation to the water it displaced.”

….See and read more @ Biography.com

 

Augmented Reality Games Like Pokémon Go Need a Code of Ethics—Now

– Wired

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“THE WORLD IS full of Pokémon now. This should not be cause for moral panic, but celebration. Contrary to a few handwringing editorials and Twitter hot takes, Pokémon Go is not a triumph of the normalization of violence, the apotheosis of cell-phone zombification, or even gamification gone awry. Amid the neo-Luddite contrarianism, a shining truth rises above all the (Magi-)carping: Pokémon Go comes in peace. But it raises profound questions about ethics in this new overlaid world of augmented reality.

The success of this mobile game, with its echoes of Beatlemania, seems to have caught everyone off guard—not least the company that produced the game. The game’s developer, Niantic, has had to rush to patch security flaws and a litany of bugs. With only a few dozen employees, the company is struggling to keep up with the fact that it runs the world’s most popular game.

Meanwhile, there are news reports that cannot be dismissed as ironically viral Luddism: Koffing appearing at the National Holocaust Museum, for instance, or women being sexually harassed as they play, or the risk posed to young black players in the US by trigger-happy police officers.

The suddenness of Pokémon Go’s mass popularity signals that a technological revolution is upon us, and it is past time for an industry-wide set of ethical standards for augmented reality.

Society has a chance to set new precedents and commit to industry-wide ethical standards now, when the biggest manifestation of AR is still a relatively inconsequential videogame.

Imagine for a moment that a young Pokémon Go player is killed by police because he “looked suspicious” as he was looking for digital creatures. Would Niantic stand up and advocate publicly for the fallen player? That would set an example worthy of enshrining as an industry best practice.

If you’re a game developer reading this, you might well ask: “Why should I take the lead here?” Consider this: Inevitably, your work experience will make you a prime hiring candidate when a city wants an AR or VR app for an infrastructure project, or a hospital wants to develop VR tech for performing surgeries, or you’re given a job to develop AR apps for a major museum. As this technology moves well beyond the realm of games, you will be the people with the experience and skill to build that virtual future.

People should decide, here and now, what they want it to look like.”

…Continue reading the thought-provoking article by Katherine Cross @ Wired.com

 

 

July 2016

Santa Ana’s Courtney Conlogue opens up about the U.S. Open of Surfing, the women’s world title race and surfing naked

– OC Register

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“Memories from the U.S. Open of Surfing through the years evoke a wave of emotions for Santa Ana surfer Courtney Conlogue.

The sun-kissed blonde – ranked the number one woman in the world – stands with her surfboard under her arm and looks out toward the water as she thinks back to some of her fondest – and painful – memories from the big Huntington Beach event, set to kick off Saturday and run through July 31.

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There was 2007, when she entered as an eager 14-year-old and made it all the way to the semifinals. It was her first major pro surf contest, and the energy on the beach fueled her excitement. It was in that moment she knew she could hold her own against the top pros.

There was the bombing surf in 2009, when massive big waves pounded the bottom of the pier and personal watercrafts had to help pull the surfers out past sets.

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Conlogue, 16 at the time, shot through the concrete pier pilings that year, to the amazement of everyone who watched the death-defying move, and she got a taste of victory when she was crowned the U.S. Open women’s champion, hoisted up and carried on the sand while proudly holding the American flag behind her.

There were the frustrating years: an ankle injury two years ago left her benched as she watched others surf her home turf, and last year the ocean simply went flat during the semifinal heat.

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“It was literally a lake,” she said. “It was like when you’re a batter trying to hit, and not even one ball comes. You don’t even get a chance to strike out.”

Conlogue comes into the U.S. Open of Surfing this year with a renewed focus, lessons learned and a drive that comes with experience, success and failure. And it helps that she’ll be wearing the coveted yellow jersey, which lets fans and fellow competitors know she is leading the rankings, the top contender in the world title race.

If she claims it this year, she’ll be the first Orange County surfer – in the main men’s or women’s tour – to be crowned world champion in about a quarter of a century.”

…Continue reading @ OC Register with some amazing photographs by Staff photographer Ana Venegas.

 

 

Few Top Colleges Require History Majors to Study American History

– Breitbart

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“Less than one-third of the top colleges and universities in the United States require history majors to take even a single course in American history.
In a new report, the American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA) finds that only 23 undergraduate history programs at 76 of the colleges ranked highest by U.S. News & World Report require even a single American history course to fulfill the major.
CTA asserts:

Many of the same institutions that do not require history majors to take a course on United States history do specify that they must complete coursework on areas outside the United States. And many allow some very strange, highly specialized topics to substitute for a course on the United States. History majors at Williams College could choose “Soccer and History in Latin America: Making the Beautiful Game.” At Swarthmore, one choice could be “Modern Addiction: Cigarette Smoking in the 20th Century.” At Bowdoin, it might be “Lawn Boy Meets Valley Girl.”

Of the 23 schools that do require a U.S. History class to fulfill the history major, 11 allow other classes such as “Hip-Hop, Politics, and Youth Culture in America” (University of Connecticut) or “Mad Men and Mad Women” (Middlebury College) to fulfill the requirement, reports ACTA.
“Historical illiteracy is the inevitable consequence of lax college requirements, and that ignorance leads to civic disempowerment,” Michael Poliakoff, ACTA’s president-elect, states in a press release. “A democratic republic cannot thrive without well-informed citizens and leaders. Elite colleges and universities in particular let the nation down when the examples they set devalue the study of United States history.”
The report comes as liberal elites who pushed through the Common Core standards in most states have also “reworked” the Advanced Placement U.S. History (APUSH) curriculum to further a progressive view of America’s past that will affect all U.S. history taught in the country.
“We are committed to the idea that all histories are important and valuable in the cultivation of a robust civic consciousness,” Bill North, chairman of the history department at Carleton College, told The Wall Street Journal, explaining why Carleton does not require history majors to take U.S. history courses.
However, Stanley Kurtz, senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center, and expert on the revised Advanced Placement U.S. History framework, tells Breitbart News, “The notion that all histories are equally able to create the ‘robust civic consciousness’ that American students require is a pathetic joke.”
“That the chairman of Carleton’s history department could make such a ridiculous statement shows the extent to which our campuses have been paralyzed by mindless relativism,” he adds. “The Founders are turning over in their graves.”
A social anthropologist by training, Kurtz says he is “the last person to disparage the study of non-Western cultures.” He continues:

But it’s ridiculous to deny the imperative for American students to learn, first and foremost, the history of our own country and its governing principles. American democracy can’t function unless our students have that knowledge. In fact, you can’t properly understand how other societies work without first understanding your own. And it’s silly to pretend that we don’t already have a national and cultural identity that has to be well understood and appreciated before we can even properly take in and evaluate the alternatives.

Kurtz says the only problem with ACTA’s survey is that “the situation is even worse than it seems,”
….More at Breitbart

June 2016

What Rome Can Teach Us Today

– Foreign Affairs

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Ancient Rome was a village that grew into a world empire. At the peak of its territorial reach, AD 117, it stretched from the British Isles to Mesopotamia and from the Rhine to the Sahara. Its history spans more than a millennium. Before the Western Roman Empire collapsed in the late fifth century, Romans enjoyed a standard of living not seen again in the West until the mid-nineteenth century. They had flush toilets, granite countertops, indoor heating, and even cosmetic dentistry. The government that safeguarded this way of life styled itself Senatus Populusque Romanus, or “the Senate and the People of Rome.” An advertisement for the link between Rome’s citizens and its elected leaders, the abbreviation “SPQR” was proudly displayed everywhere.

Rome’s classical era spanned the last two centuries BC and the first two centuries AD. At the beginning of that period, Rome already commanded a sizable empire, governed by democratic principles. By the end of it, Rome had become increasingly authoritarian but was still at peace internally. Engineering, literature, philosophy, theater, and the arts flowered; with lasting effects, Romans crucified Jesus and destroyed Jerusalem’s Second Temple. The events and personalities that populated this age are Rome’s most famous.

Historians usually justify the decision to write a new account of familiar events by emphasizing the 51zum5n5vl._sx327_bo1204203200_discovery of sources that challenge or clarify the conventional understanding. That is not the case with SPQR, Mary Beard’s retelling of Roman history from its origins through the end of the classical period. What makes Beard’s effort so compelling nonetheless is the contemporary, politically charged idiom in which the Cambridge don recasts an old story. SPQR is a translation of Roman history into the English of today—into the phrases and patterns of thought that we absorb from mass media and that bring order and meaning to our lives—and Beard’s genius is in using this idiom alone, rather than outright comparison, to suggest ancient parallels with the politics and controversies of the twenty-first century. Her book thus offers insights into not only Rome’s history but also the challenges of the present.

 

Like the contemporary United States, Rome was made up of a culturally and ethnically diverse population, and like some Americans today, some prominent Romans doubted the loyalty of certain minority groups. In the year 111, for instance, Pliny the Younger, then the governor of Bithynia, a Roman province in northwestern Anatolia, encountered the adherents of a strange and relatively new religion called Christianity, then still illegal under Roman law. Pliny felt bound to subject the Christians to loyalty trials, and he wrote a letter to the emperor Trajan asking whether the ad hoc procedures he had adopted, among them making use of an anonymously provided list of alleged local Christians, were acceptable. The emperor’s reply was remarkable. The Christians “must not be hunted out,” he wrote. “If they are brought before your court and the case against them is proved, they must be punished. . . . But anonymous lists must not have any place in the court proceedings. That would set a terrible precedent. It’s un-Roman.”

…Continue reading @ Foreign Affairs

 

May 2016

Paul Rodriguez: How I Became a Republican  |  Over California Water 

– Youtube

“In 2009, Rodriguez appeared at the Annual California Republican Assembly Convention in Bakersfield CA.

At the time Rodriguez addressed the current issue of water being denied to Central Californian farmers, under the Endangered Species Act to protect the Delta Smelt.

During his address, Rodriguez also questions his own philosophies, political beliefs, double standards, and stereotypes.”

– Political commentary should always be this funny.

 

Pop Culture  |  Mar 2016

Madonna is now a ‘toxic’ figure for millennials who think she is ‘desperate’ and ’embarrassing’ and 17 times less influential than Taylor Swift

– UK Daily Mail

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  • The 57-year-old star slammed in study by University of Southern California
  • A group of 1,000 young Americans quizzed were tired of her onstage antics
  • Recent incidents include pulling down the top and exposing breast of fan
  • Expert said Madonna’s ‘desperate attempts’ are damaging to her brand

“Madonna is now a ‘toxic’ figure in the eyes of young people who think she is ‘desperate’ and ’embarrassing’.

The 57-year-old star has been slammed by millennials in a recent study by the University of Southern California, which found she was 17 times less influential than singer Taylor Swift.

A group of 1,000 Americans were quizzed during the study with many unimpressed with Madge’s recent on-stage antics, reports the Independent.

The study, carried out by Professor Jeetendr Sehdev, also revealed that artists who collaborated with Madonna on her latest album Rebel Heart, have suffered in the estimations of millennials.

Diplo, Avicii and Nicki Minaj were all rated less culturally relevant as a result of their connection to the Madonna brand.

Professor Sehdev said: ‘Madonna’s desperate attempts for attention have damaged her legacy.’

He added: ‘1980s media manipulation tactics simply don’t work any more and turn off younger audiences.

‘This is not about Madonna’s age and her sexual image but about her being perceived as inauthentic.’

…Continuing reading @ UK Daily Mail

 

 

College Culture  |  Mar 2016

Chinese students are hiring ‘gunmen’ to take the tests that will get them into American colleges

– BusinessInsider

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“In the fall of 2013, Yue Zou decided that she wanted to leave Hegang, the city where she lived in the Heilongjiang province of China, and attend college in the United States.

Her boyfriend, already a student at the University of Pittsburgh, was eager to help her get admitted to a competitive university.

He didn’t help to edit her essay or arrange for her to be tutored for the SAT.

Instead he contacted a Chinese company that specializes in finding American-based test-taking proxies who, for a fee, obtain high scores on the SAT, the graduate school admission test called the GRE, and English-proficiency exams like the TOEFL for their wealthy Chinese clients.

According to court documents, Zou’s boyfriend negotiated a deal with the test broker. Zou then paid the broker $6,000 for the TOEFL and $2,000 for the SAT. The broker then arranged for a graduate student to take Zou’s college-entrance exams in Pennsylvania, the court documents say.

The scheme succeeded, at least for a time. Zou applied to and was accepted at Virginia Tech, where the average SAT score range for the math and reading sections is between 1160 and 1340. She enrolled there in the fall of 2014.

Law-enforcement officials in this country say that highly organized rings of college-admission-exams imposters—once considered a unique artifact of the high-stakes, test-driven Chinese education system—have arrived on our shores.

The networks like the one Zou used are far more sophisticated. In these schemes, brokers in China are using computer-enhanced photography to create nearly undetectable fake passports for schemes that allow imposters to take a range of tests—including the SAT, the GRE, and the TOEFL for students across the globe.

No one is sure exactly how many SAT, GRE and English-proficiency exam takers are using imposters in the U.S., but law-enforcement officials believe they could be more active than test administrators and security experts once thought possible.

“Hiring test-taking proxies has been a widespread practice in China for a long time,” says Terry Crawford, who runs a video interviewing service called Initialview, which helps colleges, including Stanford, Duke, Georgia Tech, N.Y.U and Columbia, vet overseas applicants. “With so many Chinese students wanting to study in the U.S., it’s natural that these fraudulent practices are spreading here, where security is comparatively low.””

…Continue reading @ BusinessInsider

Calling America ‘Land of Opportunity’ offensive, University of California warns professors

– Foxnews Youtube | Mar 2016

“Phrases such as “America is the land of opportunity” and “America is a melting pot” are “micro-aggressions” that could leave some students feeling discriminated against, according to a new faculty training guide put out by the University of California that one former professor in the system says shows “how crazy it’s become.”

“I don’t think University of California realizes how crazy it’s become.”

– Tim Groseclose, an economics professor at George Mason University

 

“I don’t think University of California realizes how crazy it’s become,” Tim Groseclose, an economics professor at George Mason University, told FoxNews.com. Groseclose was a professor at UCLA until last year, when he resigned after he brought to light evidence that the university illegally admitted students on the basis of race. “According to that document, Martin Luther King, Jr. would be guilty of micro-aggressions.”

…but Groseclose believes political correctness has jumped the shark when it can be considered a harmful “micro-aggression” to say something opposed to racism. He said the climate at universities is now so bad that even some liberal professors operate in fear.

“Just before I left UCLA, a liberal colleague and I talked about how disgusting the new micro-aggression policy is.  I asked him if he ever worried about being dragged before some investigatory board via some trumped up charges. He responded, ‘That’s why, around here, I just try to minimize my contact with other humans.’”

Groseclose said he hopes that donors and taxpayers will wise up.

“I wonder if taxpayers realize they’re paying for this,” he said. “I wish Congress would do something like suspend federal money to the University of California for a couple years – enough time for the university to regain its sanity.”

…More @ Youtube

 

Music Culture  |  Mar 2016

From The Byrds To The Eagles Part 6 of 7

– Youtube / BBC | Feb 2016

– The Apex of the California Sound….

 

College Culture  |  Feb 2016

John Cleese on the loss of humor on college campuses

– BigThink Feb 03

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If you start to say, “We mustn’t; we mustn’t criticize or offend them,” then humor is gone. With humor goes a sense of proportion. And then as far as I’m concerned, you’re living in 1984.”

 

“And the whole point about humor, the whole point about comedy, and believe you me I thought about this, is that all comedy is critical. Even if you make a very inclusive joke like how would you make God laugh? Answer: Tell him your plans. Now that’s about the human condition; it’s not excluding anyone. It’s saying we all have all these plans, which probably won’t come and isn’t it funny how we still believe they’re going to happen. So that’s a very inclusive joke. It’s still critical. All humor is critical. If you start to say, “We mustn’t; we mustn’t criticize or offend them,” then humor is gone. With humor goes a sense of proportion. And then as far as I’m concerned, you’re living in 1984.”

See the whole interview @ BigThink.com

UCSD tops Berkeley for UC applications in 2016

– UnionTrib San Diego Jan 2016

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— Just weeks after the county’s two California State University schools announced record applications for fall 2016, the University of California San Diego has announced it received a record 102,678 freshman and transfer applications.

The number of applicants received by UC San Diego was second only to UCLA, which drew 119,326 applications, a 6 percent jump from last year. For the first time in five years, UC San Diego had more applicants than UC Berkeley, which had 101,655.”

See more here @ UT-SanDiego

 

Judge Judy is a Supreme Court Justice – A surprising number of college grads think so

–  NY Post

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“The verdict is in — American kids are clueless.

An alarming one in 10 college graduates believe that Judge Judith Sheindlin, better known as Judge Judy, is actually a Supreme Court justice, according to a recent study from the American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA).

Sheindlin, of course, has been the star of television show “Judge Judy” since 1996. Although she’s not a Supreme Court justice, Sheindlin has been a judge in New York City for over 30 years, according to her biography on the show’s website.”

According to the report:

– Only 20.6% of respondents could identify James Madison as the Father of the Constitution. More than 60% thought the answer was Thomas Jefferson—despite the fact that Jefferson, as U.S. ambassador to France, was not present during the Constitutional Convention.

 – College graduates performed little better: Only 28.4% named Madison, and 59.2% chose Jefferson.

 – How do Americans amend the Constitution? More than half of college graduates didn’t know. Almost 60% of college graduates failed to identify correctly a requirement for ratifying a constitutional amendment.

 – We live in a dangerous world—but almost 40% of college graduates didn’t know that Congress has the power to declare war.

 – College graduates were even confused about the term lengths of members of Congress. Almost half could not recognize that senators are elected to sixyear terms and representatives are elected to two-year terms.

 – Less than half of college graduates knew that presidential impeachments are tried before the U.S. Senate.

  – And 9.6% of college graduates marked that Judith Sheindlin—“Judge Judy”—was on the Supreme Court!

Read the original report here @ American Council of Trustees and Alumni

Read the NY Post article @ NY Post

Musical Culture –

Janis Joplin on Her Art – The Dick Cavett Interview

– Youtube / ABC

……and she bitches about European audiences, but in a nice way.

 

 

 

US Military Culture   |   Dec 2015

8 Things You May Not Know About the Battle of the Bulge – Dec 24, 1944

– History.com

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– At this time at Christmas a long time ago, some seventy-one years ago, American soldiers fought and held out against all odds in the freezing snow so we could enjoy our religious, civil and political rights in the present day. We should never forget their sacrifice.

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“On December 16, 1944, Adolf Hitler launched an audacious counterattack against Allied forces in the freezing Ardennes Forest in southern Belgium and Luxembourg. In the subsequent Battle of the Bulge—so named for the 60-mile “bulge” the German blitzkrieg left in the Allied lines—the Ardennes’ American defenders were caught off guard as more than 250,000 German troops and hundreds of tanks descended on their positions. A lack of resources and fierce American resistance eventually halted the German advance, but not before some 80,000 G.I.s were killed, captured or wounded—more than in any battle in U.S. history.”

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Read and see about the whole thing @ History.com

A more detailed take here @ History.net

George S. Patton from San Gabriel, California, was a decisive general in the battle, read more here @ General Patton.com

 

 

11 quotes that show the great leadership of General George S. Patton

– Business Insider

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Gen Patton during a welcome home parade in Los Angeles, June 9, 1945. George S. Patton was born in San Gabriel, California, and raised on a ranch that became Orange County, California.

The Best Quote:

“No. 7:   Never tell people how to do things.

Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity.”

See all 11 quotes here @ Business Insider

Here’s the 12th quote:

Good tactics can save even the worst strategy. Bad tactics will destroy even the best strategy.”

 

New California Culture –

Disneyland to Screen ‘Random’ Guests Using Metal Detectors

– KTLA

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“Disney plans to begin using metal detectors at its theme parks, and similar changes may come to Universal Studios Hollywood and SeaWorld, officials said Thursday.

Disneyland plans to begin screening guests on Thursday, the Orange County Register tweeted.

“We continually review our comprehensive approach to security and are implementing additional security measures, as appropriate,” said a Disney spokeswoman.

Only some guests, who are randomly selected, will have to go through the metal detectors.

The changes in security policy also include discontinuing the sale of toy guns at Disney parks and resorts, and not allowing anyone over the age of 14 to wear costumes into the parks.”

More here by CNN Wire and Chip Yost @  KTLA News

 

New Family Culture

Atty Gen: FBI Investigating Syed Farook’s Mother

 – Breibart

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“On Sunday, Attorney General Loretta Lynch admitted that the FBI is investigating the mother of Syed Farook, the man who joined his wife Tashfeen Malik to massacre 14 people in San Bernardino and wound 21 others.

A worker in the area of Farook’s mother’s home reported he had noticed a half-dozen Middle Eastern men in the area, but did not report the activity, fearing he would be accused of racial profiling, according to CBS Los Angeles.

On Saturday, the Daily Caller reported that Rafia Farook is an active member of the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), which promotes the establishment of a caliphate and is connected to a radical Pakistani political group called Jamaat-e-Islami. An MSNBC reporter discovered a certificate of appreciation that ICNA’s sisters’ wing gave to Rafia Farook last summer.”

– The family that slays together stays together. Sort of. Interestingly enough, if the MSM had not barged into Farook’s old apartment,  we might never have found out his mother was the member of group linked to Islamic terrorism. I don’t agree with their methods which seemed to border on the illegal and unscrupulous, but the information is important.

Read the detailed article here by William Bigelow @ Breibart

 

 

 

Manufacturing Culture –

LA still leads the U.S. in manufacturing jobs

 – LA Observed / NPR

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– Good, informative article from LA Observed by Kevin Roderick @ LA Observed

“My LA Observed segment on KCRW on Monday used the flight of the last C-17 Globemaster made in Long Beach to talk about the Southern California aerospace legacy, and to make the point that the Los Angeles area is still the biggest manufacturing hub in the United States — and that jobs related to aviation and space are still the number one sector. It’s a point that NPR is making in a series that featured a big story Monday called What Gets Made In LA Is Way More Than Movies.

Excerpt:

“America is still making stuff.
And in terms of jobs, the Los Angeles area is the biggest manufacturing hub in the country. There are a few reasons why. There is plenty of space here to build things like factories and runways. That beautiful California weather? It’s actually great for testing planes year-round.

The infrastructure here is also key. The huge ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles let companies quickly ship products to a global market, and get raw materials to build. A massive logistics region just east of Los Angeles, in the Inland Empire, is the first stop before products get on trucks to go across the United States.

And then, of course, there are the people. The huge population base in Southern California is not only a good source of labor, but they also need to buy things, and they provide a built-in market for some manufacturers.” – NPR

 

What Gets Made In LA Is Way More Than Movies

– NPR

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“Aerospace has long been at the heart of manufacturing in Southern California. Commercial space exploration company SpaceX, formed in 2002, found a home in Hawthorne, in southwestern Los Angeles. SpaceX designs and manufactures most of its spacecraft in this factory, which was once owned by the Northrop Corp., where parts were made for Boeing 747 aircraft.”

– See the whole article here @ NPR

 

 

Aviation Culture –

Last Boeing C-17 Flight Leaves Long Beach – Ending Era of California Aircraft Manufacturing

– KTLA

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“The last Boeing C-17 Globemaster III cargo plane built at the company’s Long Beach plant departed from the facility Sunday, closing an important era for aircraft manufacturing in California.

Hundreds of people lined up around the airport and surrounding areas, including Signal Hill, to watch a final flight. It marked another bittersweet curtain call for the region’s once mighty aerospace industry, which has been began declining with the end of the Cold War.”

See it here:  KTLA News

A much more detailed analysis here from Breitbart on the some of the root causes of the complete shutdown of the former Douglas Aircraft plant in Long Beach. Between Boeing management and unions failures led to the closing.

 

Last Boeing C-17 Leaves Long Beach Plant Killed by Union

– Breitbart

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“Once responsible for 50,000 jobs, the C-17 program accounted for only about 14,000 jobs throughout California by 2010. With military aircraft orders starting to dry up and the Great Recession hammering Long Beach’s economy, Boeing made demands that workers accept benefit concessions.

Although the company was willing to offer a 3.4 percent raise in pay, Boeing wanted a lower company pension contribution and higher employee medical co-pays to remain competitive against Europe’s Airbus.

U.S. orders for the $240 million plane had ended four years earlier, but the company had started to sell C-17s to fleets in Britain, Australia, Canada and Qatar. The Long Beach plant had just received a six-plane, $1.5 billion order from the United Arab Emirates to be delivered in 2012, and more orders were expected to flow in.

But on May 12, 2010, 5,000 members of the United Auto Workers Local 148 answered the call with 80 percent of workers voting against the company offer and going out on strike against Boeing at midnight–the first strike in 25 years.

With 9.5 percent of Americans unemployed and 932,234 properties in foreclosure, industry analysts and the public were appalled that the UAW would walk out. The strike ended a month later, but the bitterness of the strike motivated Boeing to begin talks about terminating the C-17 program and shutting down the site.”

More here by Chris W. Street @ the OC Register

More on the Douglas Aircraft Company below:

More on California Aviation History:

Santa Monica & the Douglas Aircraft Company

Planes That Changed the World – Douglas DC-3

More on principal DC-3 designer Arthur Raymond

 

 

Car Culture –

– Modesto Bee

– See the whole parade here @ Modesto News Radio

More on American Graffiti the film here @ Lucasfilm 

 

Old Culture –

– NewEnglishReview.Org

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“I think we need to take a few steps back to examine Islam as a whole and to broadly define the outlines of Islam – what it is and what it isn’t.

One thing we can definitely say about Islam is that is it not solely confined to a belief system. If it is a religion it is not a religion only. Islam is a total system of life and contains within itself a particular social system, judicial system, and political system which includes geo-political aspirations – the conquest and administration of territory.

I often liken Islam to a duck-billed platypus which superficially resembles an otter. Upon closer examination, one finds this animal has a duck-like bill, lays eggs, and has many other characteristics which are not otter-like.

So it cannot therefore remain in the biological category containing otters. It is simply too different and has to have its own category. I believe the same thing is true of Islam. It is much too different from the other religions to remain in the religion category, it should be uniquely classified in its own category.”

by Rebecca Bynum

– Interesting position and especially  topical in view of the current political situation with the ‘Syrian’ refugees. More here: Why Islam Is Not a Religion

New Culture –

Hillary’s Campaign Ordered the Laugh Factory in LA Not to Make Fun of Her — Someone Should Tell Her it’s a Comedy Club

– National Review

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– What difference does it make?

“Hillary Clinton’s campaign thought it was okay to order a comedy club not to make fun of her, which is obviously a totally normal thing to do. That is, if this if this were China. In case you haven’t heard, Hollywood’s Laugh Factory posted a three-minute video of comedians telling jokes about Hillary Clinton on its website.

But apparently, the way the world normally works just doesn’t apply when you’re Hillary Clinton — because her campaign called the club demanding that it take the video down and give them the personal contact information of every single comic who appeared in it.

It gets worse: Club owner Jamie Masada reports that the campaign actually threatened to put the club out of business if he did not heed their demands.”

Read more at: National Review

Check out the legendary Comedy Club on the Sunset Strip in LA here:  The Laugh Factory

 

 

No Culture –

Why businesses are leaving California – No Sense of Humor

– National Review

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“…..Governor Jerry Brown has made several public statements over the past few years denying a “mass exodus” of California businesses. Brown has a long history of making excuses when businesses reject his state.

When Toyota announced it was uprooting three California plants and consolidating its headquarters in Plano, Texas, the Wall Street Journal quoted Brown as saying, “We’ve got a few problems, we have lots of little burdens and regulations and taxes. But smart people figure out how to make it.” The Journal’s retort: “California’s problem is that smart people have figured out they can make it better elsewhere.”

“The cost and compliance burdens of California’s taxes and regulations fall disproportionately on smaller companies, which are less able to afford teams of attorneys and accountants.”

– By SARAH RUMPF November 12, 2015

Read more at: NationalReview.com

Sea Culture –

75 Years After Steinbeck Sailed, a Boat Is Readied to Go Back to the Sea of Cortez

– NY Times

““I’m reading the ‘Sea of Cortez’ right now,” she said, peering up at the boat.

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The literary journey continues as well at Port Townsend High School, where juniors and seniors next month will begin the school’s first unit ever to focus on Steinbeck’s books about boats and fish, starting with “Cannery Row,” followed early next year by “The Log From the Sea of Cortez” and “The Pearl.”

The reading will be accompanied by visits to the boatyard, for time-lapse photography and other hands-on physical research, said Chris Pierson, an English teacher who is collaborating on the unit with science teachers from the school.”

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Read the rest of the story here:  NY Times

More on Steinbeck and the Log of the Sea of Cortez:

“[…] it is a strange thing that most of the feeling we call religious, most of the mystical outcrying which is one of the most prized and used and desired reactions of our species, is really the understanding and the attempt to say that man is related to the whole thing, related inextricably to all reality, known and unknowable. This is a simple thing to say, but the profound feeling of it made a Jesus, a St. Augustine, a St. Francis, a Roger Bacon, a Charles Darwin, and an Einstein. Each of them in his own tempo and with his own voice discovered and reaffirmed with astonishment the knowledge that all things are one thing and that one thing is all things—plankton, a shimmering phosphorescence on the sea and the spinning planets and an expanding universe, all bound together by the elastic string of time. It is advisable to look from the tide pool to the stars and then back to the tide pool again.”
John Steinbeck, The Log from the Sea of Cortez

“Adults, in their dealing with children, are insane,” he [Ed Ricketts] said. “And children know it too. Adults lay down rules they would not think of following, speak truths they do not believe. And yet they expect children to obey the rules, believe the truths, and admire and respect their parents for this nonsense. Children must be very wise and secret to tolerate adults at all. And the greatest nonsense of all that adults expect children to believe is that people learn by experience. No greater lie was ever revered. And its falseness is immediately discerned by children since their parents obviously have not learned anything by experience. Far from learning, adults simply become set in a maze of prejudices and dreams and sets of rules whose origins they do not know and would not dare inspect for fear the whole structure might topple over on them. I think children instinctively know this,” Ed said. “Intelligent children learn to conceal their knowledge and keep free of this howling mania.”
John Steinbeck, The Log from the Sea of Cortez

 – And other great quotes from the Log here:  GoodReads

 New Culture –

Studying selfies – USC’s #SelfieClass examines the superflous

– USCNews

“In USC’s #SelfieClass — formally known as “Writing 150: Writing and Critical Reasoning: Identity and Diversity” — freshman students critically examine society’s influence on self-identity and how selfies reflect and affect the global culture in which we live.

The class is led by Mark Marino, an associate professor at the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences. Marino’s work has often focused on digital spaces, including netprov, a form of narrative storytelling on social media.”

– USC

My favorite quote from a student is, “before there were selfies there were self-portraits, and before that autobiographies, and before that journals, those were all taken seriously, and why aren’t selfies taken seriously? Because…..they pretty much portray the same things…”

No they don’t.

The difference is, and it pains me to note this discussion is about a freshman writing course. Her question conveniently ignores the fact that those previous  methods of self expression required mastering another craft or technique in order to self express. Clicking a smartphone button does not.

Just a thought, even if we concede the point that this is worthwhile to study at any point, maybe it should be reserved for seniors.

Freshman writing should be about, well, writing. It will not only come in handy later in college, it will remain downright essential long after the selfie craze is over. In fact this class may well end up on your records like an academic tatoo.  Something you might regret later.

The whole selfie here:

https://news.usc.edu/80854/studying-selfies-uscs-selfieclass-class-examines-what-online-photos-say-about-us/