Sci-Fi thought of the day

So I was watching an episode of Star Trek: The Original Series, the episode in particular was The Menagerie: Part I . I was watching it on blu-ray with the updated digital effects and the bonus material turned on. During a break in the bonus material one line came through from the Commodore asking Kirk hows does he know that Spock hasn’t gone mad?
That got me thinking. What would insanity look like in a Vulcan? Of course the easy answer is that he starts getting all emotional and such, but I think there is a more intriguing answer to the question.
Vulcan are all about logic, but logic is only as good as your premises. If you have a false premise you will reach a faulty answer by logic. (this may be part of the Vulcan tradition of foregoing lies. A false premise is a very dangerous thing.) What is one form of insanity for Vulcan is being unable to determine what is a false premise and what is not? That would lead a Vulcan who thinks he is pursuing a very logical course to be doing almost anything.


Sunday Night Movie: White Heat

annex-cagney-james-white-heat_01Okay, so technically this is not my Sunday Night Movie but rather my Sunday Morning Movie. I watched this little gem on DVD in the morning and that was good because by the time the evening had rolled around I was far too tired for any movie night.
White Heat(1949) represented James Cagney returning to the genre that made him a superstar, The Warner Brothers’ Gangster Movie. While other stars return to the launching genres usually out of the hopes of reviving a fading career, Cagney made White Heat well before any decline in his career. It was the movie he wanted to make and he got to play a character he wanted to play.
Continue reading Sunday Night Movie: White Heat


Movie Review :MOON

moon_poster_sam_rockwellThe set-up for the story in the film Moon is rather straight forward. Clean fusion power is available on Earth due to perfecting a fusion process using Helium-3. The He-3 is mined on the moon by automated harvesters which are monitored on station by a single astronaut. Sam Rockwell plays astronaut Sam Bell who is just completing his contract defined three-year tour of duty on the lunar mining station.
Sam’s situation is complexed by a long malfunctioning communications satellite that requires are message traffic to go to Earth via Jupiter so he can have no real-time conversations with anyone other than the base’s AI computer, Gerty. (Voice by another talented actor Kevin Spacey.) Sam’s marriage is sinking due to his long absence and now with his tour nearly over Sam has begun to see things.
If you watch the preview then you already know that things take a turn for the stranger after Sam Has an accident and wakes up in the base hospital with an extra Sam Bell running around the place.
The film is essentially a one-person character study and while the science of the film has a few holes it gets a lot more right in the science-department than 95% of SF films. Of course this isn’t an action SF film and is a much slower movie, more on the line of Solaris than Star Trek.
The movie only partially worked for me and it worked primarily because Sam Rockwell is such a talent and diverse actor. The central mystery of the plot was poorly handled though I cannot speak to that here without presenting spoilers.
Over all It really wasn’t worth full price of admission and I would suggest if you want to see this film in the theaters do not pay more than a bargain price or better yet wait for Home Video.


Reason being unreasonable

REASON If you look at the political links and blogs along the right hand side of my site you’ll see that there is representation of the Right and The Left. I read from both sides of the isle because I like to be informed when I make a decision and I do not feel either side has a lock-downed perfect version of what works.
If I had to select a political philosophy that most matched my own it would be libertarianism. I have a passionate belief in individual rights and treating all persons equally. Sadly the Libertarians can go too far in the their quest for a pure philosophy and pursue ideas that simply are unworkable in the real world.
Continue reading Reason being unreasonable


The Obligatory Michael Jackson Post

As everyone on planet Earth has heard. Singing sensation Michael Jackson as died of a cardiac arrest.
I was not a fan of his singing, though a few songs did work for me. I didn’t hate it either it was something that made me reach for the skip button on my iPod when one of his songs popped up on my 80’s play lists.

For his fans you have my condolences.


When the Right is right

So you’ve seen me bash the right and the GOP here, but when they get something right, I’ll owe up to that as well.

Here’s writer Michael Goldfarb on the Democratic idea and bill for Cap and Trade carbon pollution.

Basically, cap and trade strikes me as the Iraq war of the Democratic domestic policy agenda. It’s the overreach moment. It’s a massive program that, unlike health care reform, no one is demanding, no one understands, and no one can explain. Cap and trade may be the only thing that can save the Republican party from eight years in the wilderness.

I do think he’s got a very valid point on this. This is a choice not something we are forced into doing. This is a policy that we really can’t know the final outcome on. I’m reminded of what Gen. Patraeus said at the start if the Iraqi War “Tell me how this ends.”
We didn’t have a clue about what was going to happen after we defeated the Iraqi military. Our poor planning was criminal in that regard. I don;t think the democrats have fully thought this out either. I think it is vast overreach and something that can really bite them on the ass.
Sadly if it does help the Republicans come back from the wilderness that is not necessarily a good thing. It does not mean that the republican have learned anything in the wilderness just that Democrats will have pissed off a lot of voters. We need smarter parties not just an angry electorate.


A bleg

The number of submission I have at the same time hsa been rising lately and I need a good way to keep track of all of them.
A friend once suggested a database where I could track submission, sale status, payout and when and even re-sales and payouts there.
Being as clueless as an Eskimo with a Camel I need assistance and trying to find a database suitable for my needs.
I run all my stuff on an Apple running OS 10.5 and it should be a really simple prgram as I can not afford to pay pro-rate for DB design.

Any suggestions?


Some people never learn Gov. Mark Sanford’s very entertaining weekend as finally come to it’s horrible and predestined conclusion. When the Governor of a state vanishes for four days and there are conflicting stories from his office and people about where he is and what he is doing, then this can’t end well.
Already I am seeing in the blogosphere the charges of unfair. The LIberal and Democrats are treated this way when they are caught cheating. (Ex-governor Spitzer might disagree a tad with people on that.) Still I can understand their anger, but it is misplaced. Sanford is being treated like this because he was such a family values kind of man. That hypocrisy is what really drive the interest and the blood-hunts.
The best example on the Left is really Al Gore. The right just went all knives and forks after Gore for his excessively large mansion and power consumption. The Left wanted to act like it didn’t matter, but it does. Both Gore and Sanford violated the morals and more they expect the rest of the population to live by.
It’s amazing how people can learn the simple rule, Live by your Morals. If you can’t either something is wrong with you or with your morals.


Another Reason the GOP is in the wilderness.

There are lots of reasons why the GOP is out in the political wilderness. There’s the war in Iraq which did not go as expected, there’s the wild spending spree, there’s the apparent incompetence  at running the government, and there’s being on the wrong side of social issues as they big to change. All of this has contributed to the downfall of the Republican party from having a lock on the entire government (2005) to being locked out of the government (2009).

Here is an example of another reason why the Republicans have taken the fall, they listen to people like MIchelle Malkin. Ms. Malkin is not part of a lunatic fringe on the right, she is an example of a right-wing commentator, columnist, and frequent talking head on Fox news.

Commenting on her blog here’s is what she had to say about a recently announced deal between pharmaceutical companies and the government.

The drug companies have cut a deal with President Obama to help fund his government health care takeover.

In other words: They are subsidizing their own demise.

I have no sympathy for industries willing to collaborate with their own worst enemies.

Don’t come crying when Obama limits your salaries, fires your CEOs, and interferes with your ability to innovate and make profits.

You deserve what you get:

There is no substantive critique of the deal in this post. There is only the concept that the Administration is the enemy. She doesn’t look at the details or comments on them. She doesn’t consider that the Drug Companies themselves might consider it a good idea.  She doesn’t propose a counter measure that would tackle the problem of low income seniors and access to medication.

Nope it’s you dealt with the enemy, nothing about working the problem at all.  This sort of obstructionism will play to the base, but it isn’t going to play to the public. Calling people names and ignoring problems will leave the GOP in the wilderness for a long long time.

BTW I am not saying this deal was a good one, but I am not calling people traitors and enemies for disagreeing with me.


Sunday Night Movie: The Creature Walks Among Us.

rexreason2 I had intended for my Sunday Night Movie to be Amadeus as I have just gotten the directors cut of the movie on blu-ray last weekend, but my night ran long and by the time I sat down to watch a movie I had time for only something ninety-minutes long or shorter. (The trouble with a day job is getting up in the morning for it.)
I stood in front of my DVD collection for a few moments pulling out films, looking at their running times, and then rejecting them as either too long or not right for my alter mood. (After rejecting Amadeus I now wanted something lighter and nor as dramatic.)
Despite having seen a period genre film just the night before, I decided to watch The Creature Walks Among Us.

Continue reading Sunday Night Movie: The Creature Walks Among Us.