Thursday, November 13, 2014

Rosetta

I hope everyone is excited about the Rosetta mission landing on a comet!  I mean this is something pretty darn special. A project that started 20 years ago and a mission that took off 10 years ago.  We chased that comet for 4 BILLION miles and 4 times around the sun.  Then once we caught up to this spinning ball of ice we landed on it!!  HOLY CRAP that is awesome.

Now we (we meaning mankind) have 64 hours to collect data before the batteries run out.  Solar panels will allow the ship to broadcast data for about one hour ever two days but they think they landed in a shadow as the batteries are not charging as fast as they thought. 

What they want to know is if this is the same water that seeded our planet (among other geeky science things).

Since earth did not originally have water the question has always been, where did it come from.  The most common theory is from comets like this one.  When earth was just a hunk of rock with all the GOOD minerals forming our core where did all the water and minerals come from on the outside surface.  The theory is Jupiter flung millions of comets towards earth which gave us the surface we now have.  Then Jupiter evolved and started sucking all of those loose projectiles to itself instead of flinging them our way.      

That's the theory at least.  

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Lots of wild talk about the city budget on the internet and frankly I have yet to actually SEE the "final" budget so I guess everyone on the net has better inside information. 

in a nutshell simplification. 

Columbus has a $360,000 short fall do to Enerpac property taxes being paid by the city (maybe we can borrow some money from Enerpac?) and some convoluted thing from the State that was a "surprise" (although this happens every year so . . ).  This has nothing to do with  moving funds to roads.  As far as I can see roads will be ignored once again unless we borrow money.  Again - I have yet to see the budget as the newest iteration in this very very fluid document only came out yesterday.    
I'll save my opinions on the upcoming cuts for later.  OK, just one.  Columbus has the largest Police force per capita and financially in our area Wisconsin.  Well, except for Monona.  This includes DeForest, Fitchburg, McFarland, Middelton, Oregon, Stoughton, Sun Prairie, Verona, Waunakee, Ocomomoc, Baraboo and Mount Horab.  I'm still looking into other towns budgets. 

We also have one of the smallest budgeted Fire Departments but those are harder to quantify.  So when people complain about public safety . . . . let's not forget about the fire fighters that make $10 an hour risking their lives saving your cat in a house fire. 

ENOUGH!  

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Speaking of oil - once again it's crashing.  NOT that I am a proponent of fracking but one of the reason gas is so cheap right now is SADLY because of fracking.  There is a glut of oil in the market because of less demand and there is a LOT of oil in the US and Russia.  With the Chinese economy slowing they are demanding less oil so . . there is a lot of oil around. 

The good news is that this might really bolster the global economy if OPEC decides to NOT cut production.  This summer oil was $115 a barrel, now it's in the $76 range  and COULD drop another $20.  This would really hurt Russia, to bad, so sad as they are an exporter of oil.  Less profits to feed their military. 

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Karen Silkwood died in a mysterious car accident on this day in 1974. She was on her way to meet with NY Times with a folder to show Kerr-McGee who owned a plutonium plant were being irresponsible and acting negligently in a "breeder reactor" for a nuclear-power plant.

Seems she took a bunch of Quaaludes and rammed into a culvert. Oddly she was not a druggie AND it seems there was a second car in the accident that rammed her from the rear forcing her off the road. What a coincidence.

That car  was never found along with the notebook with the secrets.  

Nuff said

Later!