Showing posts from February, 2012

Politics: Predictions for AZ and MI

Have usually been wrong but we keep on guessing!

Since Arizona is winner take all and Romney had a lead there, the other candidates didn't spend much effort to campaign there.

So let's say, Romney wins that one by 10%.

Michigan has most of its delegates allocated at the Congressional District level so it is a hotly contested race between Romney and Santorum.

So let's forecast a Romney win by 1% in state-wide total votes but with the delegate allocation essentially tied.

Figure Paul and Gingrich to trail by pretty wide margins behind the two front-runners.


Looking ahead to November, it is always hard to defeat a sitting President.

Ford lost in 1976 narrowly despite having the shadow of RN's resignation hanging over him.

Carter was actually quite competitive in 1980 until the very end when finally all the accumulated problems were too much for the electorate to bear.

Bush Senior lost in 1988 with a weak economy, an electorate turning toward problems at home, the…

Faith: Ash Wednesday Poetry Reflection

Fear envelopes me like drowning waters
Engulfing me in the deepest darkness.
Anger and anxiety, mocking helplessness.
Rest eludes and hope silently falters.

Love came quietly that the shepherds saw.
Ordinary face, gentle hands, and worn feet
Violently seized, my pain at the tree meet
Embodying my sin, sorrow, every flaw.

Love overcame, the fire and wind is here
Overflowing with truth, cascading grace
Visiting me daily, brushing my face
Embracing me in love, erasing fear.

Faith: Book of Common Prayer

One of the great contributions to English language, culture and spirituality is the Book of Common Prayer (BCP).

For example, the words of a presiding minister at a wedding often tracks word-for-word from the portions of the BCP pertaining to the liturgy celebrating marriage.

I've very much enjoyed reading the Psalms in my copy of the BCP.

I noticed that in some ways the words are updated.  For example, using "happy" instead of "blessed" and replacing the "thou" and "thee" language of the old English.  But nonetheless, the rhythm can cadence of the Psalms is very moving.

I started to search online to see if I could find out what translation is used in the BCP Psalter.  After much digging around and comparing well known translations like NIV, NLT and NRSV and finding these aren't the sources, I went to the library.  The NEB and REB are English Bibles prepared by distinctly British scholarship without much online presence.  Alas, taking a …

Non-profit of the month: February 2012 -

In the years I've been posting non-profit of the month, there have been groups that have appeared multiple times.  However, this will be the first time an organization will have a back-to-back appearance.

Think of the schools you have attended:  for me, it was Micheltorena Street Elementary, Thomas Starr King Junior High and John Marshall High School.  
See if the schools you went to have projects.  Or think of the schools your kids, nephews and nieces go to.  Check if their schools have projects.
Hope you will give to support our students in our schools!

Politics: Santorum's turn to be the anti-Romney?

If the PPP polls in Colorado and Minnesota are to be believed... it might be Santorum's turn to be the option to Romney!

The poll in Colorado dated 2/4, has Santorum in second place with 26% surpassing Gingrich.

And most stunning, Santorum is ahead of Romney in Minnesota by 2% in the 2/4 PPP poll.

There is also a non-binding primary in Missouri on Tuesday that Santorum is placing emphasis on.

Anyway, will see if RCP posts any new polls tomorrow before the voting on Tuesday.

UPDATE:  Nope.  No new polling data at RCP.  The contests in Colorado, Minnesota and Missouri all appear to be non-binding so I suppose that is part of the reason polling has been minimal.  Nonetheless, there will be news coverage.  My wild guess:  win - lose - draw for Romney and Santorum. Romney takes Colorado, Santorum takes Missouri and a very close contest in Minnesota between the two.  Doubts about Romney are strong within the GOP but Bachman, Perry, Cain and Gingrich have risen and fallen as alternatives…

Life: Probiotics and my digestive system

Okay, this post might cross into that Too Much Information category but I'll go ahead anyway!

Like many people, I have somewhat common and frequent digestive system discomforts.  As such, the probiotics industry is growing by providing various tablets, liquids and foods with probiotic additives. 

I have attempted a simple semi-scientific test.  For 28 consecutive days, I had one serving at breakfast of probiotic yogurt or kefir from Green Valley Organics.  I kept a log of my digestive discomforts.  I would note a score of "1" for any symptoms.  If they are more notable, I would log a "3" for that day.  I also kept a log of 28 consecutive days when I did not take any probiotic product for breakfast.

With the yogurt and kefir, I logged a score of 22 compared to 24 without.  Not much of a difference so far. One can imagine many other factors impact digestive discomforts.  Obvious is ordinary ups and downs of life stress.  Another is the occasional meal this might …

Politics: Nevada and Maine

The Nevada caucus is on Saturday.  The Maine caucus runs for a week starting on Saturday.

Given the large Mormon population of Nevada and Maine being a New England state, Romney is expected to do well.

Thus, these two events will only be news if:
(1) Romney does NOT dominate them
(2) Gingrich support begins to shift over to Santorum
(3) Both Gingrich and Santorum support drop as the electorate gives up on "anti-Romney."

I suspect Nevada won't be making much news this weekend.  Of course, I've been totally wrong in 2 of the last four of these forecasts!

UPDATE:  Indeed, no surprises here.

Science: Looking at some data regarding global warming

According to this article, one of the methods of assessing global temperatures is by satellite detection of O2 vibrations.

The web site that archives the readings is located at the University of Alabama in Huntsville Earth System Science Center.

To see a graph of the data they have been collecting.  Or click on the image below.

The data has only been collected since 1978.  In the grand scheme of the age of the earth, this is almost nothing.  Since industrialization (around 1800), this represents about 16%

There other data regarding the question of global warming is greenhouse gases of which CO2 gets the most attention.

There are the measurements of greenhouse gases at various sites compiled at Cape Grim in Australia since 1976.

Obviously, these two bits of data aren't the only things to consider in the question of global warming.

One can say that CO2 levels are rising.

One can say the last decade has seen above average temperatures as measured by O2 vibrations though the actual ri…