:: eyedot ::: images information ideation ::

:: EYE (anatomy), light-sensitive organ of vision in animals.
:: EYE (verb), to look at to look at something or somebody inquisitively.
:: EYE (noun), an ability to recognize and appreciate something; a point of view or way of thinking.

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:: 4.28.2005 ::  



Shameless

Under the Jobs and Growth Act of 2003, "those claiming 100% business use of [forty-one domestic and 15 foreign] SUVs could deduct 100% of the [purchase] price ... during 2003 and until late October 2004." The American Jobs Creation Act of 2004 tightens this loophole, but stays far away from closing it completely. Read all about it in MSNMoney.

To quote the author,
Tax savings for guzzler buyers reduce government revenue, increase the federal deficit, increase our trade deficit, and send yet more money to the Middle East. If we were going to devise a formula for wrecking the country, it would be difficult to improve on this one. We might as well call this portion of the American Jobs Creation Act of 2004 the Osama Bin Laden Support Fund.
That's Farked! Especially considering that the Administration is cutting the hybrid vehicle tax break.

:: Deb 6:28 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

:: 4.25.2005 ::  



Hybrid car sales soaring

Up 81% last year from 2003! Farked.


FOLLOWUP
Speaking of alternative fuels...

...how about running your fuel cell car on wastewater, bacteria and a cellphone battery? Scientists have managed to coax bacteria into producing hydrogen - a development that would reduce the cost of waste water treatment (and maybe make it easier to develop fuel-cell technology for consumer autos, no?). Pretty cool - more here.

:: Deb 12:20 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

:: 4.22.2005 ::  



A novel idea - extend Daylight Savings to save energy

It's got bipartisan support, too!
Citing Transportation Department figures, [Rep. Fred Upton R-Mich] said the additional two months could save the equivalent of 100,000 barrels of oil each day, or 1 percent of the nation's total energy consumption.

"And that's using consumption figures from the 1970s. The actual savings should be even higher," Upton said.
Of course the farmers are complaining about it since they never liked Daylight Savings anyway, but I have a hard time feeling sympathetic, since all they have to do is get up an hour earlier to offset Daylight Savings.

:: Deb 2:29 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::
 



Reconstructing Iraq
...Congress allocated $18 billion for reconstruction. And what's happened is, you know, it's a lot easier to kick a barn down than it is to build one. And so, so much of this money has had to be diverted for security training, for just security on the projects. I mean, on any given construction project, as much as 35 percent of the money goes to protecting the workers who are working on it. So the problem is just--has been the violence, and it's basically overwhelmed every attempt or most of the attempts to rebuild the country.
From a Meet the Press transcript found on Tom Tomorrow's blog.

:: Deb 10:56 AM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

:: 4.15.2005 ::  



Hey look, a photo!

This is another shot of a Gila cliff dwelling:


:: Deb 10:33 AM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::
 



Way cool: robot suit assists with movement for elderly, disabled
Two control systems interact to help the wearer stand, walk and climb stairs. A "bio-cybernic" system uses bioelectric sensors attached to the skin on the legs to monitor signals transmitted from the brain to the muscles. It can do this because when someone intends to stand or walk, the nerve signal to the muscles generates a detectable electric current on the skin's surface. These currents are picked up by the sensors and sent to the computer, which translates the nerve signals into signals of its own for controlling electric motors at the hips and knees of the exoskeleton. It takes a fraction of a second for the motors to respond accordingly, and in fact they respond fractionally faster to the original signal from the brain than the wearer's muscles do.
Neat-o! Thanks to Toshi for the link. Full article in the New Scientist.

:: Deb 10:19 AM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::
 



The Feds do something right - Operation FALCON nabs 10,000+ fugitives
More than 150 who were arrested were wanted for murder, another 550 were sought on rape or sexual assault charges, and more than 600 had outstanding arrest warrants for armed robbery, officials said. Among those captured were 150 gang members and 100 unregistered sex offenders, they said.
Nice. I do, however, wonder what the other 8,700 were charged with... more info can be found on the US Marshalls' website.

:: Deb 9:29 AM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

:: 4.14.2005 ::  



This is just funny

Bush, Cheny and Rumsfeld are being immortalized - as slime-mold beetles.

:: Deb 5:35 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::
 



The estate tax vs. Social Security
Those who vote to repeal the estate tax this week will be sending a clear message: They see the "crisis" in Social Security as serious enough to justify benefit cuts and private accounts. But it's not serious enough to warrant a minor inconvenience to those who plan to live on their parents' wealth.
In the SF Chronicle, linked from..... FARK!

:: Deb 5:31 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::
 



Sick of high gas prices? Buy a still

Seriously. $250 plus several gallons of apples and some gasoline gets you ethanol at $1.40 per gallon. Sweet!

:: Deb 5:23 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::
 



Asked and answered, I'd say
One gay student asked whether government had any business enacting and enforcing laws against consensual sodomy. Following Scalia's answer, the student asked a follow-up: "Do you sodomize your wife?" The audience was shocked, especially since Mrs. Scalia [Maureen] was in attendance. The justice replied that the question was unworthy of an answer.
The NY Post obviously holds a different view of the same story...

Hooked on Fark.

:: Deb 4:56 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::
 



More good news

NOT.
This is the first time that salaries have increased more slowly than prices since the 1990-91 recession. Though salary growth has been relatively sluggish since the 2001 downturn, inflation also had stayed relatively subdued until last year, when the consumer price index rose 2.7%. But wages rose only 2.5%.

The effective 0.2-percentage-point erosion in workers' living standards occurred while the economy expanded at a healthy 4%, better than the 3% historical average.

Meanwhile, corporate profits hit record highs as companies got more productivity out of workers while keeping pay increases down.
Barnaby sent me this story from the LA Times.

:: Deb 4:20 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::
 



FEMA funded 315 funerals; FL says only 123 died in hurricanes
"If you were to call around to all the medical examiner offices, people would say, 'No way did we have as many deaths as FEMA is saying,'" said Dr. Stephen Nelson, head of Florida's Medical Examiners Commission. "It's just an incredible number -- a difference of 192. This is the Free Funeral Payment Act."

The discrepancy is even greater because the families of some victims counted as storm casualties by the medical examiner said they received no help from FEMA, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel found.
Hm. Wonder who runs FEMA? I mean, why would a federal agency try to to spend more than it needs to? Farked again.

:: Deb 3:10 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::
 



U.S. trade gap at $61 billion, up $2.5 billion between Jan.-Feb.
Another record monthly U.S. trade deficit is likely to slow the world's largest economy and heighten tensions with key trading partners, economists warn.
...
Oil prices were a major component of the surge in the deficit.
Yike. From Fark.

:: Deb 3:00 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

:: 4.13.2005 ::  



Silliest headline ever

Two Koreas to Exchange Weasels, Hippos Across DMZ

Well maybe not THE silliest, but it's certainly up there. Farked!

:: Deb 2:48 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

:: 4.04.2005 ::  



Quote of the Day
The problem is not with people or churches that are politically active. It is with a party that has gone so far in adopting a sectarian agenda that it has become the political extension of a religious movement.

-- John C Danforth, former US Senator and Ambassador to the UN
This is a quote from a great Op-ed piece he wrote in the New York Times last week. More:
When government becomes the means of carrying out a religious program, it raises obvious questions under the First Amendment. But even in the absence of constitutional issues, a political party should resist identification with a religious movement. While religions are free to advocate for their own sectarian causes, the work of government and those who engage in it is to hold together as one people a very diverse country. At its best, religion can be a uniting influence, but in practice, nothing is more divisive. For politicians to advance the cause of one religious group is often to oppose the cause of another.

Take stem cell research. Criminalizing the work of scientists doing such research would give strong support to one religious doctrine, and it would punish people who believe it is their religious duty to use science to heal the sick.

During the 18 years I served in the Senate, Republicans often disagreed with each other. But there was much that held us together. We believed in limited government, in keeping light the burden of taxation and regulation. We encouraged the private sector, so that a free economy might thrive. We believed that judges should interpret the law, not legislate. We were internationalists who supported an engaged foreign policy, a strong national defense and free trade. These were principles shared by virtually all Republicans.

But in recent times, we Republicans have allowed this shared agenda to become secondary to the agenda of Christian conservatives. As a senator, I worried every day about the size of the federal deficit. I did not spend a single minute worrying about the effect of gays on the institution of marriage. Today it seems to be the other way around.
Great stuff. Thanks to Peter for the link.

:: Deb 11:44 AM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

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