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Scientists at Harvard are working on to resurrect the woolly mammoth from extinction through an ambitious feat of genetic engineering. According to the scientist leading the ‘de-extinction’ effort, the team could be just two years away from creating a hybrid elephant-mammoth embryo, in which the genes extracted from the frozen remains of woolly mammoth would…

via Harvard Scientists Claim They Could Resurrect Woolly Mammoth From Extinction Within Two Years — Sparkonit

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In the wake of the Flynn resignation, it’s more important than ever for every concerned American to read Red Notice to fully understand Putin’s Russia and how it operates. Very frightening, particularly if the Trump people subscribe to this method of operation. I say you should RUN to the bookstore and pick up Red Notice.

Norbert Haupt

red-notice

Bill Browder started his career on Wall Street and was drawn first to Eastern Europe and then to Russia shortly after the Soviet Union broke apart. He started an investment fund and eventually became the largest foreign investor in Russia. In the process of privatizing, Russia ended up with twenty-two oligarchs owning 39 percent of the economy, while everyone else lives in poverty. In that environment, by investing in Russian businesses, Browder made a fortune for himself and his clients.

Then he noticed some anomalies within the companies he had invested in. Big chunks of the companies were stolen, leaving the investors diluted. As he drilled down into the complex schemes underway, he discovered massive fraud involving investors, regulatory agencies, law enforcement, the judicial system, and government in general, up to the highest level. He found that Russia was basically a criminal enterprise designed to suck the resources out of the country…

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Presidential Raccoon Tan

racoon-tan

Check out this article by Laura Beck in the Cosmopolitan.

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Pence on Muslim Ban

pence-on-muslim-ban

Calls to ban Muslims from entering the U.S. are offensive and unconstitutional.

— Gov. Mike Pence, Dec 8, 2015

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False Speech

Fine speech is not becoming to a fool; still less is false speech to a prince.

— Proverbs 17:7

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Waterboarding

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Yeah!

Ends and Beginnings

dons-johns

These are the port-a-potties being used for the Donald J. Trump presidential inauguration. What do you think, America’s number one of number two? What a powerful and prophetic visual.

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Troubled Times Ahead

November 22, 1963 – John F. Kennedy is assassinated. February 21, 1965 – Malcolm X is assassinated. April 4, 1968 – Martin Luther King Jr. is assassinated. June 5, 1968 – Robert Kennedy is assassinated. In the span of five years the citizens of the United States lived through four very traumatic assassinations. I was […]

via Fear of the unknown — Ends and Beginnings

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Poem: Mondnacht

Stumbling across a five-year-old post about a beautiful German poem, I added an Addendum today highlighting a musical rendition that is as powerful as the poem itself. My friend Eric, in the comments below in 2011, was helpful with translations that will give the English reader some sense of the content. I will not even try this, I won’t be able to do it justice. But listen to the music. It needs no words.

Norbert Haupt

Very seldom do I stumble across poetry that really touches me. Mondnacht (moon night) is one such poem. I saw it as a youth, memorized it, thanks to a persistent, and at the time loathed, German teacher. I wrote it into the cover of a book some time later. Then I completely forgot about it. Last week, I happened upon the book that lay dormant in a box for 40 years, opened the cover, and there it was. It touched me deeply once again.

[I cannot convey this in English. If you can read German, may it lift your soul and fly away with you.]

Mondnacht

Es war, als hätt’ der Himmel
Die Erde still geküsst,
Dass sie im Blütenschimmer
Von ihm nun träumen müsst’.

Die Luft ging durch die Felder,
Die Ähren wogten sacht,
Es rauschten leis’ die Wälder,
So sternklar war die Nacht.

Und meine Seele spannte
Weit ihre…

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wind-turbines

[picture credit]

Recently I heard Trump ridicule wind turbines because they “kill all our birds.” The president of the United States should know his facts better and not spout out nonsense. People actually listen!

Estimates about bird deaths from wind turbines vary greatly, but opponents of wind turbines, like fossil fuel industrialists and owners of golf courses, generally estimate on the high side.

I found a Smithsonian article that states that we kill between 140,000 and 328,000 birds a year in the United States with wind turbines. This is based on a study searching for the results of many other studies. We will never be able to have an exact number, but this is pretty close.

However, there are many causes of deaths for birds that are much more devastating. Supposedly, for every bird killed by a wind turbine, 2,800 birds are killed by cars. I certainly have hit my share of birds over the years. Critics often point out raptor birds as the victims, because those are the cool and rare ones. Researchers have identified the leading causes of deaths of raptors to be (1) shooting, (2) poison and (3) cars.

The leading causes of deaths for birds are buildings, power lines, cats, automobiles and pesticides, in that order. One study actually found that feral cats alone kill 3.7 billion birds in the United States every year. That is 10 million birds a day. Compare that to the estimated 2 per day per wind turbine.

No matter what study you believe, and what numbers are accurate even by a factor of 100, claiming that wind turbines should not be used to reduce killing of birds makes no sense whatsoever.

But then, there is Trump.

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Hitler’s Rise to Power

After Chancellor Papen left office, he secretly told Hitler that he still held considerable sway with President Hindenburg and that he would make Hitler chancellor as long as he, Papen, could be the vice chancellor.

On 30 January 1933, Adolf Hitler was appointed chancellor of a coalition government of the NSDAP-DNVP Party. The SA and SS led torchlight parades throughout Berlin. In the coalition government, three members of the cabinet were Nazis: Hitler, Wilhelm Frick (Minister of the Interior) and Hermann Göring (Minister Without Portfolio).

With Germans who opposed Nazism failing to unite against it, Hitler soon moved to consolidate absolute power.

Having become Chancellor, Hitler foiled all attempts by his opponents to gain a majority in parliament. Because no single party could gain a majority, Hitler persuaded President Hindenburg to dissolve the Reichstag again.

Elections were scheduled for early March, but on 27 February 1933, the Reichstag building was set on fire. Since a Dutch independent communist was found in the building, the fire was blamed on a communist plot.

The government reacted with the Reichstag Fire Decree of 28 February which suspended basic rights, including habeas corpus. Under the provisions of this decree, the German Communist Party (KPD) and other groups were suppressed, and Communist functionaries and deputies were arrested, forced to flee, or murdered.

Campaigning continued, with the Nazis making use of paramilitary violence, anti-communist hysteria, and the government’s resources for propaganda.

— Coca, Jimmy. Adolf Hitler Biography: The life and Death of The Führer of Germany (Kindle Locations 555-571).

As can be seen here, Hitler took power with a minority of the votes. He then used fear and hatred, had his thugs set fire to the Reichstag (the German equivalent of the U.S. Capitol) and blamed it on communists. This enabled him to move quickly and grab absolute power. In the background, his supporters campaigned, hassled minorities and created terror. The entire country was in fear.

Within a month of taking office, he held absolute power, all opposition was eliminated, arrested, killed or tyrannized. All was unconstitutional, but what did that matter to him at that point?

 

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The Good News

Everyone now knows a few new words and how to spell them:

Fascist

Misogynist

Xenophobe

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No Shoes and No Fire

no-shoes

We were looking for a fun place to rent a house up north for Thanksgiving. We found a candidate on Airbnb in Sonoma. It had huge trees outside. It looked great from a distance.

Then we saw the rules:

— No shoes in the house

— No fires in the fireplace

Who wants a cabin in the woods with no shoes and no fire?

Continue looking.

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Because he doesn’t take responsibility for his failures.

When something isn’t going right, he blames others. He blames Bill Clinton when his lewd language and misogyny is exposed. He blames a vast conspiracy when he falls in the polls. He resorts to bankruptcy when his businesses are not going well.

I bought a property in 2004, that lost 60% of its value in the crash of 2007. I have hung on for nine years now, making payments every month and losing money every month. The property still has not reached 100% of what I paid for it twelve years ago. But I pay, because I promised a bank with my signature twelve years ago that I would pay.

Trump’s advice is to walk away when things get tough. We, the public, pay for his failures.

By the way, that’s exactly what Hitler did. When he saw he was losing the war, he actually had the audacity to state that obviously the German people weren’t committed enough to win and they deserved it. Then he implemented a scorched earth strategy that devastated the country and placed misery on the German people for years after the war. After he put a bullet through his head in 1945, it took the country most of a decade to get back on its feet. Everyone lived in misery, many died of hunger and cold, even after the war.

This is what happens when leaders fail and do not take responsibility.

Trump shows me with every action and statement that he is not a leader, he is a usurper.

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How very British

How very British, yes. I am sure we could do an American equivalent. Now there’s a challenge.

Of course, that’s where our term Middle Class came from. I wonder what we call the two other classes in America with political correctness? The One Percent? And The Poor?

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