Friday, May 22, 2015

Modern Rhapsody - The Seven Arts, 1957 (Salvador Dali)

Xrock Western Tour Hits ABQ

Frank and Dave have been hosting XRock 100.3 from Boise, Idaho in the Breaking Bad RV. Unaccountably, no one ended up in a barrel.

Lana Del Rey - Burning Desire (The Heaven & Earth Division Remix)

Such a PERFECT song for a dance remix! Progressive House is the best!


Walking past 24th & Castro at five minutes until midnight, Bella and I saw what appeared to be three cats gathered at the northwest corner. After awhile, though, we sensed something otherworldly about these cats. Turns out they weren't cats at all, but raccoons, traveling silently together through Curtis Park on a midnight jaunt.

Coco O. of Quadron - Where The Wind Blows

Exit music from Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby":

Sac Ballet Stutters

WTF? Need to see the May 30th show:
The Sacramento Ballet has laid off all of its dancers for the remainder of the 2014-15 season and has canceled its popular Beer and Ballet series slated to run later this month.

However, members of the ballet have formed their own company called the Capital Dance Project and have scheduled a performance for May 30 at the Crest Theatre.

Waco Arsenal Absurdity (Except, It Isn't)

This is absurd. I wonder if they had code words? "Hey, get more salsa," means run for the kitchen!:
And the idea that the Waco Twin Peaks wasn’t merely turned into a war zone, but a literal armory, is hard to react to with a straight face. When guns are being stashed in bags of tortilla chips, and knives are tucked into bags of flour, considering the logistics leads to scenarios that are genuinely absurd—wouldn’t the crunching of the chips tip off rivals that the biker was going for the weapon? Or would they think he was just after a mid-gunfight snack? Would a knife-wielding biker with an arm covered in flour be more or less intimidating to opponents?

Pursued By The Demons Of Hell

Walking Bella around, you see inexplicable things. Yesterday evening, about 6:25 p.m., I saw a small cream colored dog running at high speed, as if being pursued by the demons of hell, northbound, directly behind the DMV offices on the west side of 24th St. The demons seemed imaginary and the dog's fate is unknown.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Mother's Day

I was a guest at Jackie's on Mother's Day, and was charmed by the clever card assembled by Sheldon and Chris for their mother, plus the beautiful plaque presented by Austin Ditter.


It's simple strategy. If you remove Iraq as a power, as the U.S. did in 2003, then you guarantee the rise of Iran as the greatest power in the area. The reason is simple. Iraq is a majority Shiite nation, which means it looks to Tehran for direction, not Washington. For example, Ahmed Chalabi, who used to be Dubya's best friend in Iraq and State of the Union guest, spends his time these days wheedling Iranian politicians, Hezbollah, and other Shiite groups, because that's where the power (such as it is these days) is located. If you don't like Iran, do not weaken Iraq. And stop blaming the resulting miserable morass of Middle East politics on Obama.
“Everybody else wants to ask that question of, ‘Gee, would you have gone into Iraq if you’d known what you know now?’” Gohmert complained to Virginia talk radio host John Fredericks.

“If President Bush had known that he would have a total incompetent follow him that would not even be able to negotiate a status of forces agreement with Iraq and start helping our enemies and just totally put the Middle East in chaos, then he would have to think twice about doing anything if he had known he would have such a total incompetent leader take over after him,” Gohmert said. “That should be the question.”


An excellent article about this proposed development. Interesting that it appears in the UK press. If all the other developments weren't promising the same thing it might be sustainable, but not in concert with the others. Remember, the idea, as expounded by former Rio Rancho Mayor Jim Owens, is to make Rio Rancho (with Albuquerque as an appendage) larger than Los Angeles and extend to Mt. Taylor, and beyond:
Like most farmers in the American southwest, Candelaria has been hard-hit by the historic drought consuming the region. But the increasing scarcity of water is compounded by an orchestrated pattern of urban sprawl that Candelaria says imperils his very way of life. In recent years, one threat has loomed larger than the rest – a bizarre mega-development backed by the British bank Barclays, which proposes to build an entirely new city in the middle of the desert, just west of Albuquerque.

The plan, to fabricate a “master-planned community” for nearly 100,000 people on what is today a field of sand dunes, is called Santolina. If fully populated, the development would be about the size of New Mexico’s current second-largest city, Las Cruces, and bigger than Santa Fe, the state capital.

Listening To The Girl From Davenport, Aotearoa


Dean Potter, RIP

Just admire BASE jumping to no end!


The early evening walk long forgotten, Bella pads out from my bedroom to find me in the kitchen reading old newspapers. Amazingly, I'm not getting ready for another walk. Bella retreats back to the bedroom. Five minutes later Bella again pads out from my bedroom to find me in the kitchen paging through old newspapers. Amazingly, I'm not getting up for another walk. Bella retreats back to the bedroom. Another five minutes later Bella pads out from my bedroom to find me in the kitchen still reading old newspapers. I'm still not getting ready for another walk. I don't know which insanity is more pathetic: expecting a walk any instant or expecting the world to be any different by reading old newspapers.

Murderous Bikers

Not wanting to get overly-paranoid or anything, but I noticed some Hells Angels parked at the Truxel Hooters Saturday night here in Sacramento. Is it a biker thing to do in May? Confab with rivals in a silicone-heavy neutral zone? And what went wrong in Waco?

I always like reading Badtux the Snarky Penguin, and his explanation of why many guns didn't lead to exceeding politeness in Waco:
"It doesn’t work like that because of the most fundamental problem with anarchy theory, Communism, and capitalism for that matter: The problem that mankind is a bunch of jumped up baboons with delusions of grandeur and with all of the tribal-based territorial behaviors of baboons. Baboons live in tribes led by an alpha male and when they encounter other tribes of baboons that want to use the same territory, much screeching, howling, and fighting occurs as each tribe attempts to assert dominance. The only reason baboons haven’t wiped each other out is that they have never invented guns.

Well, at least the *hairy* baboons have never invented guns. As for the hairless ones, they breed like rats, so that sort of explains why *they* haven’t wiped each other out."

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Chinese Economic Espionage Accusations

My Chinese co-worker informs me these arrests are big in Chinese circles today:
According to the indictment, PRC nationals Wei Pang and Hao Zhang met at a U.S. university in Southern California during their doctoral studies in electrical engineering. While there, Pang and Zhang conducted research and development on thin-film bulk acoustic resonator (FBAR) technology under funding from U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). After earning their doctorate in approximately 2005, Pang accepted employment as an FBAR engineer with Avago Technologies (Avago) in Colorado and Zhang accepted employment as an FBAR engineer with Skyworks Solutions Inc. (Skyworks) in Massachusetts. The stolen trade secrets alleged in the indictment belong to Avago or Skyworks.

...According to the indictment, in 2006 and 2007, Pang, Zhang and other co-conspirators prepared a business plan and began soliciting PRC universities and others, seeking opportunities to start manufacturing FBAR technology in China. Through efforts outlined in the superseding indictment, Pang, Zhang and others established relationships with officials from Tianjin University. Tianjin University is a leading PRC Ministry of Education University located in the PRC and one of the oldest universities in China.

As set forth in the indictment, in 2008, officials from Tianjin University flew to San Jose, California, to meet with Pang, Zhang and other co-conspirators. Shortly thereafter, Tianjin University agreed to support Pang, Zhang and others in establishing an FBAR fabrication facility in the PRC. Pang and Zhang continued to work for Avago and Skyworks in close coordination with Tianjin University. In mid-2009, both Pang and Zhang simultaneously resigned from the U.S. companies and accepted positions as full professors at Tianjin University. Tianjin University later formed a joint venture with Pang, Zhang and others under the company name ROFS Microsystem intending to mass produce FBARs.

The indictment alleges that Pang, Zhang and other co-conspirators stole recipes, source code, specifications, presentations, design layouts and other documents marked as confidential and proprietary from the victim companies and shared the information with one another and with individuals working for Tianjin University.

Rasta Claus On Broadway

I wasn't thinking about drugs, but apparently drugs were thinking about me. I hadn't given Bella a walk this morning, but instead decided to do so at lunch, which is why I found myself walking her down Broadway at 4 p.m. I was zeroing in on the Carl's Jr. - I could see the entrance a short distance ahead and was vectoring in on it - when a man walked up with a large, sturdy plastic bag - the sort you'd find containing 50 pounds of wood chips at Home Depot - and said, "Do you want to buy some weed?"

Startled, I said "You have weed in that bag?" He said "Best shit ever! Here take a whiff," and pushed a big handful of fresh green serrated leaves in my face. Wow, there was a lot of pot in that bag! I replied, "Uh, that's OK, I don't smoke," and resumed my push to the hamburger joint. Still, I was surprised. Sometimes you see people smoking pot publicly on Sacramento streets - now I guess they're selling it too. Times are in flux! Santa Claus in May? More like Rasta Claus, dreaming of a green Memorial Day.