I love NASA. When they get something right they get it really right. There latest success is the Stardust spacecraft. It traveled more than 3 BILLION miles to collect dust from a comet. Using its gel covered collector plate it trapped particles moving at more than 13,000 mph. All this, and it safely brought back all that good stuff back to the earth safely. All for about 212 million dollars. A steal really when you consider that is less than a dollar a person if we all chipped in. About the cost of a pack of gum for every person in America. I think we can afford it. These particles are amazing because they are made of the pristine material that the solar system was formed from. These little chunks of stuff are older than the sun. Just think about that for a minute, we as humans are able to build something than can fly 3 billion miles, catch some super sonic dust, that is older than the sun, and bring it back for only 200 million dollars. Amazing! See what we can accomplish when we put our big brains to something other than blowing ourselves up and polluting the earth. Read more here.
With pollution at an all time high, poverty, political corruption, wars, illness, and a whole bunch of assholes running the country its good to know that the main topic of concern for a lot of religious people in this country is “the gays.”
CHRISTIAN groups have launched a furious campaign against Hollywood, claiming the Golden Globe Awards promote films with gay or “leftist” themes to serve a political agenda.
The criticism was made after Brokeback Mountain, a film about the forbidden love between gay Wyoming cowboys that stars Australian Heath Ledger, won four awards on Tuesday.
Other winners included Philip Seymour Hoffman, named Best Actor for his portrayal of the homosexual writer Truman Capote; and Felicity Huffman, the Desperate Housewives star who played a transsexual with a gay prostitute son in Transamerica.
I just don’t get it. God said love thy neighbor, Jesus loved everyone and hung out with lepers and whores, judge not lest ye be judged, etc etc. On paper the Christian religion seems to be one of love and acceptance. Do these crazies worship a different god than the rest of the Christians? I just don’t know. But what is for sure is that this is NOT NOT NOT a “Christian country.”
This nation was founded by a bunch of deists, and has freedom FROM religion as one of its tenant’s. I don’t care what god you worship, America is a place where “all men are created equal” that means gay cowboys get the same rights as anyone else, and frankly your religious views don’t mean a hill of beans.
We cant have it both ways. Everyone gets the same rights, or no one does. If you want women to be able to vote, and blacks to be able to have the same rights as whites, and land owners and non land owners both be able to vote, and the right to worship any religion you want, then gay people have to have the same rights as you. Homosexuality spans all races, genders, social classes, and religions. There are not just white gays, or black gays, or rich or poor gays. Worship anything you want, but don’t confuse your religious views with the principles this country was founded on.
Download this video here. (wmv)
While Larry thinks its not ok to show gay cowboys, he continues to show movies like Hostel, which are basicly horror porn…so graphic and horrible sexualy charged violence it ok, the tragic love story of two people is not.
This is great, California is going to be dropping some serious money on solar programs 3 BILLION!! dollars. Once you get past the idea that we spend about 6 billion A MONTH in Iraq, you will notice that this is a lot of money for a solar program.
Lighting up the solar industry, a California agency on Thursday approved $2.9 billion in solar incentives to encourage consumers to switch to sun power, creating the largest solar-incentive program in the United States.
The money will be used for rebates for solar Photovoltaic, solar water heating, and solar heating and cooling systems over 10 years, with 10 percent of the money slated for low-income customers and affordable-housing projects.
The year 2005 has been the hottest year on record for the planet, hotter than 1998, 2002, 2004, and 2003. More importantly, perhaps, this has been the autumn when the planet has shown more clearly than before just what that extra heat means. Consider just a few of the findings published in the major scientific journals during the last three months:
â€”Arctic sea ice is melting fast. There was 20 percent less of it than normal this summer, and as Dr. Mark Serreze, one of the researchers from Colorado’s National Snow and Ice Data Center, told reporters, “the feeling is we are reaching a tipping point or threshold beyond which sea ice will not recover.” That is particularly bad news because it creates a potent feedback effect: instead of blinding white ice that bounces sunlight back into space, there is now open blue water that soaks up the sun’s heat, amplifying the melting process.
â€”In the tundra of Siberia, other researchers report that permafrost has begun to melt rapidly, and, as it does, formerly frozen methaneâ€”which, like the more prevalent carbon dioxide, acts as a heat-trapping “greenhouse gas”â€”is escaping into the atmosphere. In some places last winter, the methane bubbled up so steadily that puddles of standing water couldn’t freeze even in the depths of the Russian winter.
So it looks like the man is holding back on giving low income tax payers their refund. What the shit?!
The IRS has frozen refunds for hundreds of thousands of low-income taxpayers without telling them they’re being investigated for tax fraud or giving them a chance to defend themselves, the IRS taxpayer advocate said Tuesday.
In a blistering report to Congress, Taxpayer Advocate Nina Olson said complaints about unpaid tax refunds have soared more than 400% since 2002. Sixty-six percent of those who complained were entitled to a full refund, an investigation by her office found. An additional 14% were determined to be eligible for a partial refund, Olson says.
The issue raises “serious questions” about the protection of taxpayer rights and might constitute a violation of due process of law, Olson charged in her report.
More than three-quarters of the returns investigated were for low-income families who claimed the earned income tax credit, a program that provides tax refunds for the working poor. Delayed refunds cause a “significant hardship” for these taxpayers, the report said.
The taxpayer advocate’s office estimates up to 1.6 million refunds have been frozen over the past five years. Once a taxpayer’s refund is frozen, the IRS will automatically freeze future refund claims until the taxpayer files an undisclosed number of “legitimate” returns, the taxpayer advocate report says.
The IRS doesn’t notify taxpayers that their returns are being investigated for fraud. And even if taxpayers inquire about their refunds, IRS employees are usually barred from providing any information until six months after the taxpayer’s inquiry, Olson says.
The IRS is working to improve communications with people whose refunds have been frozen, says Richard Speier, acting chief of the IRS Criminal Investigation office. Still, the delay in information is needed to avoid tipping off targets of fraud investigations, Speier says.
“A lot of times, these are ongoing investigations where an individual will be filing multiple claims for refunds throughout the filing season,” he says.
In its response to Olson’s report, the IRS also contended that her conclusions were drawn from a “significantly biased” sample of taxpayers that doesn’t accurately reflect the program. Taxpayers who are innocent are far more likely to complain to the taxpayer advocate than are those who’ve filed fraudulent returns, the IRS said.
The IRS Questionable Refund Program has existed since 1977. In recent years, though, the IRS has used sophisticated computerized screening to look for fraudulent returns. In 2004, investigators identified 500,000 potentially fraudulent returns â€” representing one-half of 1% of the returns claiming a refund â€” the IRS says.
Olson says the electronic sweeps are a smart use of government resources but says the IRS lacks the staff to investigate all the returns that are automatically flagged because they contain something suspicious. As a result, she says, some refunds end up frozen for months or years before they’re referred to IRS examiners.
So with global warming being linked to all sorts of bad things lately,
Scientists studying a fast-dwindling genus of colorful harlequin frogs on misty mountainsides in Central and South America are reporting today that global warming is combining with a spreading fungus to kill off many species.
The researchers implicate global warming, as opposed to local variations in temperature or other conditions. Their conclusion is based on their finding that patterns of fungus outbreaks and extinctions in widely dispersed patches of habitat were synchronized in a way that could not be explained by chance.
And our illustrious leaders doing nothing about the problem because they don’t want to slow down the economy,
SYDNEY (AFX) – Australian Prime Minister John Howard said it was unrealistic to expect nations to sacrifice economic growth in order to halt global climate change.
Howard told a conference of Asia-Pacific nations and corporations that growth was the only way many nations could reduce poverty levels among their populations.
‘The idea that we can address climate change matters successfully at the expense of economic growth is not only unrealistic but it also unacceptable to the population of Australia which I represent,’ Howard said.
‘(It’s also) I’m sure, unacceptable to the populations of all the other countries that are represented around this table.’
Howard, whose conservative government has joined the United States in refusing to sign the UN’s Kyoto Protocol on greenhouse gas emissions, said economic growth and climate solutions need not be mutually exclusive.
Its good to see someone doing something about the problem, Whole Foods is the first fortune 500 company to go 100% green. And I for one am happy as a clam. This just goes to show you that you can have a wonderful, profitable business, without raping the earth or your customers, or your employees.
Or, to put it another way: The purchase – in terms of the environmental benefit in displacing conventional fuels – is equivalent to taking 60,000 cars off the road or planting 90,000 acres of trees.
Whole Foods executives say the move was the result of the environmental activism of its Colorado employees.
See a small group of people at one store changed the way an entire company does business. We can make a difference.