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Up and Coming on ePluribus Media

  • Posted on: 1 September 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

Over the next couple of days, some of the upcoming content on ePluribus Media will include a fantastic Flash animation by Billy Blob with music by The Sun.

Keep an eye open for it.

Behind the scenes, we've been doing some site updates in addition to planning some other changes that we're sure you'll like.

What kind of "Fall Cleaning" are you up to?

Rachel Maddow and Jane Mayer, Astroturfing the Kochtopus

  • Posted on: 25 August 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

Continuing information that adds to, and overlaps, the recent piece by DeltaDoc, here's a clip of Rachel Maddow's interview with Jane Mayer, author of Covert Operations: The billionaire brothers who are waging a war against Obama:

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

In case you missed the initial list of items to start boycotting with a vengeance, here it is again:

  1. Brawny paper towels
  2. Dixie Cups
  3. Stainmaster Carpet
  4. Lycra
  5. Georgia Pacific (Plywood, lumber...and paper?)

More info later -- let's take a chunk out of Koch's bottom line, and teach these teaparty-spawning, traitorous instigators of sedition a lesson in patriotism and economics. One that makes irresponsible, selfish, unregulated capitalism pay far less for such scurrilous activity.

Corporate activism, corporate sedition and treason: those are the most damaging items that are affecting and destroying our nation today. The Kochtopus is the funding spigot that directed monies to and through think tanks and sold the teabagger origins as a "grass roots" movement, instead of the corporate-spawned tool that the movement really is.

Astroturfing is one of the primary strategies of the Kochtopus; it's time to start targeting and cutting off the many arms, trimming the beast back to a more manageable size -- or destroying it, before its infection spreads any further.

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Megamind

  • Posted on: 12 August 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

Heh...

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Synopsis

From the studio that brought you “Shrek,” “Madagascar” and “Kung Fu Panda.” “Megamind” is the most brilliant supervillain the world has ever known. And the least successful. Over the years, he has tried to conquer Metro City in every imaginable way. Each attempt, a colossal failure thanks to the caped superhero known as “Metro Man,” an invincible hero until the day Megamind actually kills him in the throes of one of his botched evil plans. Suddenly, Megamind has no purpose. A supervillain without a superhero. He realizes that achieving his life's ambition is the worst thing that ever happened to him. Megamind decides that the only way out of his rut is to create a new hero opponent called "Titan", who promises to be bigger, better and stronger than Metro Man ever was. Pretty quickly Titan starts to think it's much more fun to be a villain than a good guy . Except Titan doesn't just want to rule the world, he wants to destroy it. Now, Megamind must decide: can he defeat his own diabolical creation? Can the world's smartest man make the smart decision for once? Can the evil genius become the unlikely hero of his own story?
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...I'm looking forward to Megamind. It stars the voices of Will Ferrell, Tina Fey and Brad Pitt.

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A New Perspective On The Fermi Paradox

  • Posted on: 1 August 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

 

Ever heard of the Fermi Paradox? Essentially, it's this:

If there are intelligent civilisations elsewhere in the Universe with technologies that far surpass our own, why do we see no sign of them?

The article The Fermi Paradox, Phase Changes and Intergalactic Colonisation, posted June 26 online at the Technology Review, two gentlement from the National Technical University of Ukraine have come up with a new take that's yielding some interesting insights:

Their approach is to imagine that civilisations form at a certain rate, grow to fill a certain volume of space and then collapse and die. They even go as far as to suggest that civilisations have a characteristic life time, which limits how big they can become.

In certain circumstances, however, when civilisations are close enough together in time and space, they can come into contact and when this happens the cross-fertilisation of ideas and cultures allows them both to flourish in a way that increases their combined lifespan.

What's this mean? Well,

The result gives a new insight into the Fermi Paradox. Bezsudnov and Snarskii say that for certain values of these parameters, the universe undergoes a phase change from one in which civilisations tend not to meet and spread into one in which the entire universe tends to become civilised as different groups meet and spread.

Fascinating.

Of course, this doesn't resolve the question definitively, but certainly provides some interesting additional sparks that could catch and burn brightly in a fertile imagination.

What do ~you~ think -- is there any intelligent life in the universe? (Outside of Earth, that is -- effectively avoiding whether or not you'd qualify humanity itself as "intelligent.")

 

The Need For And Role of Journalistic Integrity: Thwarting Breitbart Bias And Propaganda

  • Posted on: 22 July 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

More manipulation, propaganda and incitement stir the airwaves and reverberate through the internet as the Shirley Sherrod controversy unfolds before us. This marks yet another time that a heavily edited, doctored and flagrantly erroneous video was successfully used to smear and tear down a target of the right-wing. And yet again, the source was found to be lacking integrity; the story told by the video a complete fabrication. But the public and officials still choose to react to such trash without question, even after repeatedly finding that the source has intentionally deceived and mislead in order to affect negative change.

How can we stop this mad dash toward insanity and push for a greater degree of accountabilty, if not from the sources of such misdirection then at least in some form or capacity that prevents a knee-jerk reactionary response to such trash without a pre-requisite pause to question and verify?

Perhaps we can't. Then again, perhaps by driving home the growing facts regarding the importance of personal due-diligence, it may be possible to at least provide some underlying guidelines to protect against further future misdirections. In the spirit of optimism that such efforts would prove useful, here's a list of documented distortions made by Breitbart, taken from Big Falsehoods: An updated guide to Andrew Breitbart's lies, smears, and distortions over on Media Matters. Each link goes to the appropriate entry on that site, where there's more information about each event:

Updated July 21, 2010 3:24 pm ET

Following the dissolution of Andrew Breitbart's smear of former Obama administration official Shirley Sherrod, Media Matters provides an updated look at how his sensationalist stories have been based on speculation, gross distortions, and outright falsehoods.

Over the jump, I'm concluding this piece by quoting selected excerpts from Holding America To Her Principles from the USPatriotsUnited blog, with permission. The excerpts focus on the importance of a free and independent media, and provide some hints to the role that such a media should play in our society today. I selected them in particular because they provide some insight about the "how" and "why" the rise of the blogosphere and citizen journalism in prominence is a result of the failure of the traditional media to faithfully discharge its role.

If you find this post useful, please talk it up and send links to it far and wide. We must, as a nation of concerned citizens seeking a better & brighter future, start encouraging others like us to do our part to quell the fires of incitement.

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BP Pressure Tests To Continue Today

  • Posted on: 17 July 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

The efforts to fully cap the gusher continue with tests to ensure that the existing cap is holding, integrity is good and that there are no other leaks.

From CNN,

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Critical test to continue Saturday in fight to contain oil spill
By the CNN Wire Staff
July 17, 2010 3:18 a.m. EDT

New Orleans, Louisiana (CNN) -- BP will continue crucial testing Saturday to determine whether a new containment cap will keep stopping oil from gushing into the Gulf of Mexico.

On Friday, the containment cap left some, including President Barack Obama, cautiously optimistic after it seemed to stop the massive flow of oil.

BP officials were still analyzing tests on the containment cap Friday and were uncertain about whether there was a leak in the well.

Thad Allen, who's overseeing the government's response to the oil spill, said Friday that pressure was rising in the well. That was a sign that the well was holding and that the leak that had been spewing oil into the Gulf for nearly three months could be contained.

But pressure readings had not reached the optimal level.

[...more...]

__________

So far, so good.

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The Incredible, Heartless, No-Pulse 'Deadeye' Dick Cheney

  • Posted on: 16 July 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

So, did you hear that he officially has no pulse now?

That doesn't seem to surprise many people, does it?

The official explanation is that a device -- a pump of some type -- was installed into his heart (?!?) after he'd experienced worsening conditions of congestive heart failure (CHF). The truth is, he hasn't ~really~ had a pulse in decades. This is just the best new way to disguise that.

(Make the jump for more heartless cruelty at Dick's expense, but on ePluribus Media's nickle...er, servers.)

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Founded, Not Forsaken: A Republic (if you can keep it)

  • Posted on: 4 July 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

Happy Fourth of July, folks.

"Well, Doctor, what have we got—a Republic or a Monarchy?"

"A Republic, if you can keep it."

      -- Ben Franklin to an unknown lady,
        per the notes of delegate Dr. James McHenry of Maryland.

We've been called worse. A corporatocracy, an oligarchy, a plutocracy...whichever the definition, they seem to be far and away quite different from the initial goal of a republic. But across all forms, regardless, is the ever-present and apparently common denominator of national pride, perversely corrupted and reduced to nationalism and jingoism.

The two should never, ever be mistaken for a true, uniquely American definition of "patriotism" nor should they ever be used to justify war or to quell dissent.

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Senator Robert C. Byrd Has Died

  • Posted on: 28 June 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

From the Sunday Gazette Mail online:

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June 28, 2010
U.S. SEN. ROBERT C. BYRD DIES AT 92
By Greg Moore,
The Charleston Gazette

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Robert Carlyle Byrd, the longest-serving member of Congress in United States history, who spent much of his career as a conservative Democrat and ended it by fiercely opposing the war in Iraq and questioning the state's powerful coal industry, died Monday. He was 92.

"I am saddened that the family of U.S. Senator Robert C. Byrd, D-W.Va., tearfully announces the passing" of the senator, Jesse Jacobs, Byrd's press spokesman, said in a statement.

Byrd died at 3 a.m. at Inova Fairfax Hospital in Falls Church, Va., according to the statement.

Click here for full article.

______

May he rest in peace.

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Record Keeping: Signs of Civilization and Its Subsequent Demise

  • Posted on: 26 June 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

The Largest Oil Spills in History, 1901-Present

 ChartsBin.com has a great flash animation on a page titled The Largest Oil Spills in History, 1901-Present.

 Check it out if ever you need to get an idea of the amount and placement of some of the largest oil-related disasters (aside from war) that the global ecology has had to endure.

These spills have an impact not only on any local environment affected but also on any systems that the pollutants pass through as they are dispersed far and wide through the ocean.

The current huge gusher in the Gulf will leave an ecological wound that will impact not only the local communities, but also other ocean-based life -- even if the oil remains relatively close in proximity. [more on affected species] And we already have plenty of indicators that "close proximity" is highly unlikely, with some predictions stating that the oil (including all the accompanying toxins and chemical dispersants) may ride the Gulf Stream for a trans-Atlantic boost to start impacting far-off places like Norway.  The more conservative estimates range from only affecting shores along the inner gulf to tainting shores along the eastern US seaboard.

It's not just oil itself that we have to worry about with regard to polluting our environment.  We have, as a species and particularly as a culture, often regard ourselves as masters of our environment, not subject to or impacted by it, the occasional wild storm tornado, earthquake, fire or flood notwithstanding.  Our habits and self-importance have led to an arrogance and disregard that is getting more difficult to ignore as our everyday overconsumption begins to stress, strain and compromise a variety of systems.  The impact of our negligence is becoming more difficult to ignore, too.  [pacific gyre, domestic drilling, mountaintop removal]

As a parting thought, here's a little something to think about: how much of an impact on our environment do we have simply in pursuit of pleasure? Here's a question and answer that may bear some further investigation, as well as some somber thinking:

 How much pollution do cruise ships dump into our oceans?

Now, I'm off to go wobble der wooblekint ("walk the dogs" in warped English-Germanesque).

Peace.

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Setting the record straight on Presidential Accomplishments

  • Posted on: 26 June 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

Very interesting video clip from Rachel Maddow's show:

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Maddow touches upon the accomplishments to date of President Barack Obama's first term, referencing an article by Taegan Goddard on the same topic. When she ran down the list of accomplishments, I found myself thinking "That's a lot, in a little time." Certainly not "perfect" but a far cry from what and where the previous Administration and it's congressional majority of Republicans had done with, for and to the nation.

Just think of how much more could have been accomplished, too, if the Republicans in Congress would stop working and praying for failure in order to try and re-seize any kind of political majority and power --you know, if the GOP actually did their jobs, as duly appointed representatives of, by and for the people? Just think of how much better things could be in all sectors, if they'd only work with America, instead of hoping for failure and undermining the nation...

Hat-tip Moby of DelphiForums.

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Revisiting the Lyrics to "America the Beautiful"

  • Posted on: 19 June 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

With all the recent changes in our world, and the impact of those changes upon our nation, perhaps it's time to adjust some of the songs of old to better reflect our current state of being. Let's start with "America the Beautiful" for example:

O beautiful for spacious polluted skies,
For amber waves of grain oil,
For purple flattened mountain majesties
Above the fruited poisoned plain!
America! America!
God The GOP shed his grace shat mightily on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood sown thy guv'mint with trait'rous greed
From sea to shining dying sea!

Mmmmm...that seems a lot less positive. More accurate? Sure -- but not very positive.

Too bad they still have enough power to prevent any attempts at undoing their damage.

Image from RLMiller's Daily Kos diary.

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