Monday, July 31, 2017

Old-School Coffee-Making With A Wear Ever Model 3008 Percolator..


Click to enlarge pics


My electric percolator went out yesterday after 15 years. I'm hoping it's just the cord, because a new one is about $90.00, which I can't afford right now.

I pulled my antique percolator out of my camping gear last night. I'm guessing it's at least ten years older than I am.

I'll look for a manufacturer's stamp when I clean it after making coffee.

It takes longer, because the electric elements in the Farberware percolator would start percolating in less than a minute. I think this one will take about ten minutes on the stove to heat the water enough to begin percolating, and about ten minutes of percolation to have the coffee ready. 

The other tricky part to this one is that the stem tube in the strainer basket isn't very tall. It's a careful job to avoid getting coffee grounds down there, which would show up in the pot. 

The electric also stopped percolating after 12 minutes and dropped to a warming temperature afterwards. It wouldn't burn the coffee unless it sat 24 hours, and even then only a little.

With this pot, I'll have to pour any coffee that doesn't go in my mug into a thermos.

On the plus side, the kitchen is going to smell wonderful in a few minutes. The coffee the old percolator makes is phenomenal.

Youtube video of my Wear Ever 3008 in action:




Assembling the percolator:








Dan

Footnotes & Links:

The Hagley Museum & Library Collection of Ephemera - Catalogs, Manuals, Advertisements, and Brochures for Wear Ever products:
http://findingaids.hagley.org/xtf/view?docId=ead/2268_I.xml

Wear Ever Brand History page:
http://www.wearever.com/AboutUs/Pages/BrandHistory.aspx

Classic Camping Gear Discussion Forum topic on Wear Ever percolators:
https://classiccampstoves.com/threads/vintage-wear-ever-products-of-us-and-canada.32904/
(Also discusses "Fitz-All" replacement lids being on some units.)

1950's-Era  Wear Ever Coffee Pot Ads:










Peace, Love, & Bernie: On Passion, Getting Things Done, And The Psychosis Of Self-Fulfilling Apocalypse

I see it online, and I see it in local meetings; People are passionate in their support of Bernie Sanders. To many, possibly even millions now, Bernie represents hope at the edge of a cliff.

The fear of oligarchy and feudalism is sharp in the air to those who have awakened and are aware.
The hope of salvation is found in the memory of great American Presidents such as Lincoln, FDR, JFK, and others. To many, Bernie Sanders is reminiscent of FDR. Both men presented something that was and has been severely lacking in US culture prior to their arrival on the scene: a positive vision of the future, and a wider prosperity for the people of this nation. I will return to that part about a positive vision for the future later in this writing.

Over 750,000 people have donated to the campaign, with an average donation amount of $35.00. Many have donated repeatedly, with the campaign having received over a million individual donations. These numbers are noth HISTORIC and record-breaking. No other campaign in US history has received donations from so many individual donors.

These numbers not only speak volumes about the grass-roots popular support of the campaign, they also speak greatly about the passion of the people in their support of Bernie Sanders.  To me, that passion is a sign of the deep sincerity that Bernie’s supporters share widely. It also is a sign of the stressful dichotomy I mentioned above, that sharp contrast of hope and fear.

Anger is one component of passion, hope is the other. It is the strangest alchemy of Human emotion. I do not think great passion can exist without the mix of both hope and fear.

Anger is always a derivative of fear. It is well-known that there are two natural responses to fear; Fight or flight. Think back to any point in your life where anger was in your heart. Anger at a failing relationship is the “fight” response to the fear of losing someone dear to you. Anger at someone cutting you off in traffic is the fight response to the fear of what a collision could do to your life.

Anger at someone suggesting a different approach to a problem is the fight response to the fear of losing control over a situation that could affect your life or the life of others.  It doesn’t matter who is right or wrong in the heat of the moment; We’re simply too invested to just let someone else take the reigns without “fighting” for what we believe is right – and against an outcome we fear. It is only after the emotional reaction has subsided that the two sides – who may well agree on the outcome they are trying to achieve – can come together with some degree of logic and work out a compromise solution that everyone hopes they can live with.

It is exactly this part of being human that the democratic form of government we have is supposed to mediate. Control of the means to an end is at the heart of the divide between all the dualities in modern politics, and all the factions in every political coalition. Democrat or Republican, Progressive or Conservative, Populist or Corporatist…or Bernie supporter and other Bernie supporter.

The NEED for Bernie’s campaign is clear; Bernie stands as the only visible route in modern times out of a nearly catastrophic global psychotic maelstrom of corporatism that is eating our freedom, prosperity, and even possibly the habitability of the planet and any hope of future generations. For those of you who do not see corporatism as a threat to the very survival of humanity, rest assured that there are millions who very much do. I do not exaggerate the level of long-term threat felt by those who are working to free the world from corporocracy.

That means that we are going to have disagreement within the ranks on strategy, on timing, and on a host of other issues. Even more; We are a grass-roots, self-organized army of volunteers. There may be leaders, but they are most definitely not rulers.

All this means that it is critical that when tempers flare as multiple methods of supporting the campaign are debated, we remember that we are all trying to achieve the same end: a breakthrough in the current political paradigm and the election of a true populist to the Presidency. We MUST take the time to step back, see our fellow Bernie supporters as allies and not opponents, and wait for reason to rise above emotion again.

In speaking to the dearth of a positive vision for the future in modern culture, I look directly to the entertainment that surrounds us.

On television and in the movies, and online, we are bombarded constantly with stories and images of apocalypse, violence, war, and crime. Stories that outline what we could truly achieve with modern technology are almost never told. Such stories are as exotic as a meteorite of solid gold landing softly in your backyard. Even documentaries tend to focus far more on the problems facing us than on potential solutions.

Stories of the great triumphs of human engineering are relegated to the rapidly-receding past of the post-depression era of the 20th century, with rare examples peeking through. Perhaps if you read science and engineering magazines, you may see glimmers of hope, but how many among the general population do? It wasn’t much different after the 1930’s depression, either, especially once the second world war was engaged.
The entertainment constantly submitted before us in the few hours we have away from work, along with the general struggle of life for the current working class after forty years of the erosion of wages, benefits, and working conditions amounts to a psychic assault. I’m not talking telepaths, I’m just talking about everything we see being struggle, strife, violence, or even the fall of civilization, leading to exactly what the wealthy want us to feel: competition between ourselves and every other human on the planet instead of cooperation.

Modern mass media, and to a fair extent social media are used to:
  • Pit men against women.
  • Pit people of differing skin color against each other.
  • Pit one religion against the others.
  • Pit secular people against religious people.
  • Pit the elderly against those of working age AND against youth.
  • Pit younger workers against older experienced workers.
  • Pit one nation against another.
  • Pit groups of nations against other groups of nations.
  • Pit those struggling for positive change against those who fear the loss of what little they now have.
The list could go on and on and on.

I have personally witnessed the media in both film and on television getting progressively darker from year-to-year over the past twenty years.

With this psycological backdrop, is it any wonder that someone offering hope such as Bernie Sanders does seems like some sort of miracle?

Still, there is only one way out of collective darkness; We must join hands, share what light we can find together, and all put one foot in front of the other to leave it behind. Bernie may be walking out in front, but he would be walking alone if we weren’t all walking with him, sharing our lights.

#FeelTheBern – and try to hold your own candle flames steady as you may without burning each other along the way.

Dan

Dan Stafford

Peace, Love, & Bernie: Was #BernieOrBust Created By Republican Campaign Strategists?

Was #BernieOrBust Created By Republican Campaign Strategists?

The “Bernie Or Bust” movement purports to “Revolt against plutocracy” by writing Bernie in on your ballot in the general election in the event that Bernie doesn’t succeed in becoming the Democratic nominee for President of the United States.

Before anyone gets the idea here that I am pushing them to vote for Hillary Clinton in the event that she takes the nomination, I am NOT. There IS a better alternative than writing in Bernie should Hillary be nominated. I will go into what that alternative is, and why writing in Bernie if he is not the Democratic nominee is pointless and something the Republicans and Plutocrats would love. I will state here that I myself cannot stomach the idea of voting for another Corporatist, and that is exactly what I see Hillary as.

Now that we have that out of the way, I will discuss why I suspect that “Bernie or BUST” is an idea created by Republican trollsters.

I was an elected Democratic Precinct Committeeman in York Township precinct 112, DuPage county, Illinois for three years. (2011-2014) I did this for several reasons:
  1. DuPage county, IL was dominated by Republicans in-office.
  2. I had no idea how local politics, or State-level politics in IL actually worked and wanted to learn.
  3. I wanted to help get Progressives elected in Illinois.
*NOTE: Terminology of the office “Precinct Committeeman” is written in Illinois State law, and not some sexism on my part. A woman would’ve had the same title, and quite a few did.

Prior to taking on getting elected as a PC, I was involved with the Illinois Dennis Kucinich campaign of 2004 in writing letters to the editors of  local newspapers. When Dennis failed to be nominated by the Democratic party, the remnants of his campaign formed a grass-roots organization called Progressive Democrats of America. (The link to the left is the article on PDA at Wikipedia. PDA’s site is at http://www.pdamerica.org/ )

This organization (PDA) is NOT affiliated with the Democratic party. It attempts to get Progressives elected as Democrats because getting candidates on the ballot as either a Democrat or a Republican requires far less voter signatures on ballot petitions than most States require of any other party.

Getting a candidate’s name on the ballot can be as different as needing notarized petition signatures from 5,000 voters for a Democrat or Republican vs. 50,000 notarized signatures for ANY other party. Also, those signatures must come from registered voters, not just anyone. On top of that, party officials from any opposing party have a habit of legally challenging any petition signatures with the Election Commission, so if the requirement is 5,000 signatures, you want to get 10,000 so you can defeat any opponent’s petition challenge. If the rquirement is 50,000 – get 100,000 or your candidate may not even appear on the ballot. (Note: The base number of petition signatures required varies by office. Since a Precinct Committeeman was only slightly higher than dog poop in the party, and not paid one cent, the base requirement was I believe 20 signatures, so I tried for 40. The numbers above would be something like a US House seat.)

Granted, the numbers I am referencing above are governed by State law, and are for the State of Illinois, but it’s not so different in most other States. When you see that, it tells you a lot about how the game is rigged in favor of the status quo at all levels.

The two main points there are that A) I learned about this kind of thing from becoming the most basic officer a party has in Illinois – Precinct Committeeman – and B) PDA is NOT an arm or the Democratic party, they just realize they face less futility by trying to change it from inside the rigged rules.
I also served as the leader of a smaller group of grass-roots activists called Progressive Democrats of Illinois, who were a fantastic bunch of folk that I still count as friends, and that brought me around to becoming a PC. I did that from 2004-2012 and didn’t get too awful far.

One of the things that I learned by being a Precinct Committeeman was that in order for a write-in vote to count, the person whose name is being written in MUST file with the Election Commission in each county, and by the legal deadline, with all the required NON-MAJOR-PARTY registered voter petition signatures, to be a valid write-in candidate. Their name wouldn’t be on the ballot, a blank would. However, if you write in Mickey Mouse, ha ha, it doesn’t count. Only writing in the name of a candidate who has met all the legal requirements to be a valid write-in candidate is counted as a vote. Any other write-in is counted as a “no-vote” for that particular office on the voter’s ballot. (Also known as an “undervote,” like they missed checking off anything for that particular office.)

Granted, the rules for write-in candidates are governed by State law, and in some cases a State may even leave it to a County, but the number of jusrisdictions where a vote for an un-filed write-in candidate is counted as valid in a national election such as the Presidency (Or Congress) of the USA is probably the equivalent of a toddler pissing in an olympic-sized swimming pool.

The point here is that, if you write in Bernie’s name in the event of a Hillary nomination, you are in about the same position of that toddler peeing in the pool, unless Bernie and his campaign do all the filing work NATIONALLY to get him registered as a write-in candidate. If you don’t believe me, feel free to check the election laws in your particular State.

Now, I realize that if you’ve read this far, the subject likely matters to you, and you’re not going to be voting for Hillary if Bernie’s not the nominee, regardless of what anyone says. Guess what? I’m right there with you. I wouldn’t either. So here is where that alternative I mentioned comes in.

I am proposing that, in the event Hillary is nominated, (An I think I’m wasting my time writing this, ’cause Bernie gonna win!!) we turn around and vote for the likely Green party candidate, Dr. Jill Stein. I am calling this strategy #BernieOrGreen2016.

A Green Party USA platform would be so close to Bernie’s that most of you won’t find major differences. A vote for the Green nominee would actually count. It would also count towards making it easier for highly-Progressive Greens to get on the ballot nationally. You see, if you get enough of a percentage of the vote in one election, many States elevate your party to major party status in the next election. In that case, you have the same petition requirements as the Dems or Repubs. If you want to do a protest vote that reflects your Progressive values and will actually stick a needle in the butts of the “major party” corporatists, #BernieOrGreen2016 would actually matter.

If enough people adhered to that strategy, very, very loudly, you might pull those holding their noses and looking at HRC into putting their intention toward something they can be proud of.
Wasting God-knows-how-many votes that wouldn’t count vs. helping more Progressives get access to the ballot or even actually getting one elected. Hmm. Let me chew on that one…

#BernieOrBust seems to me designed to siphon off Progressive votes like piss down the toilet if Hillary is nominated, thereby helping hand the Presidency to the Republican candidate. (*Shudder*) #BernieOrGreen2016 would actually do something for Progressives. It’s still a big risk, but a lot better one than wasting votes altogether, or not voting.

But first, I AM VOTING FOR BERNIE in the Democratic primaries this time. Because #Bernie GonnaWin – and I will have just wasted an hour writing this blog post, and be happy as a progressive clam.

Peace, Love, and Bernie, and to quote the Summer of Love generation that came before me, can you dig it?

Dan Stafford


  Dan Stafford

Peace, Love, And Bernie: That Word “Socialism”…

There are a bajillion people out there online slinging around the “socialist” label (Especially the corporate media!) in regards to Bernie Sanders.

There is a problem with that, and it’s not the one you think; Socialism is one thing, and Democratic Socialism is entirely another.

Definitions:
(Source = Google search term “Define: Socialism“)
so·cial·ism
ˈsōSHəˌlizəm/
noun
noun: socialism
  1. a political and economic theory of social organization that advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole.
    synonyms: leftism, welfarism; More
    radicalism, progressivism, social democracy;
    communism, Marxism, labor movement
    “my appreciation for certain aspects of socialism does not mean I’m a socialist”
    • policy or practice based on the political and economic theory of socialism.
      synonyms: leftism, welfarism; More
      radicalism, progressivism, social democracy;
      communism, Marxism, labor movement
      “my appreciation for certain aspects of socialism does not mean I’m a socialist”
    • (in Marxist theory) a transitional social state between the overthrow of capitalism and the realization of communism.
(Source = Google search term “Define: Democratic Socialism“)

Democratic socialism is a political ideology advocating a democratic political system alongside a socialist economic system, involving a combination of political democracy (usually multi-party democracy) with social ownership of the means of production.

The difference between the two is that Democratic Socialism seeks to preserve a Democratic government under the representative control of the country’s citizens, while pure socialism (As witnessed by the former Soviet Union and others) has no such component.

Even here, the terminology gets confused, because what Bernie Sanders actually proposes is a “Social Democracy,” which seeks to preserve both a Democratic, citizenry-controlled representative government, AND strongly-regulated Capitalism with private ownership of property instead of all-out public ownership of everything. 

(Wikipedia: “Social democracy is a political ideology that supports economic and social interventions to promote social justice within the framework of a capitalist economy, and a policy regime involving welfare state provisions, collective bargaining arrangements, regulation of the economy in the general interest, redistribution of income and wealth, and a commitment to representative democracy.”)


 Historically, the United States of America has been at its most widely-prosperous, with its largest middle economic class, under a system that could best be described as a weak form of social democracy.

So it MATTERS whether the “D” or the “S” come first when you define the overall legal, social and economic structure of the country’s system of governance. You WANT the “S” first, IE: Social Democracy. If you remember nothing else, just remember that Social Democracy is the best system we have SO FAR come up with to govern a country. 

The trickiest part is that Bernie Sanders is referring to what HE is (A Democratic Socialist) in advocating for a Social Democracy type of system. He is defining himself with those words, not the system he is putting in place.

Because the symantics in this area are so fuzzy, it’s necessary to distinguish between the description of the personal advocate and the description of the proposed system.

Put it this way:

What is Bernie Sanders? A Democratic Socialist!

What is Bernie Sanders proposing? A Social Democracy!

Are we having fun at Scrabble yet?

Peace out,

Dan

Dan Stafford

Peace, Love, And Bernie: Just Visited Lake Elsinore 4 Bernie This Evening…

Lake Elsinore 4 Bernie is a good group of people with lots of energy. They’re getting organized and are working on some really cool activities out in the community.

I tend to be much more of an online guy, and for right now, they’re not running with that direction. At least not the corner of the web I know how to run in. We do overlap a bit at Facebook, though. It will be interesting to watch how this unfolds and what comes of it all. Hopefully, it will mean more local people getting involved in working to spread the word about Bernie Sanders.

Lake Elsinore 4 Bernie as a group feels that the things I do best online aren’t that valuable and want to put it off until after the Primary elections. I respect their opinions and intent, but disagree. I feel that every possible channel should be working for Bernie BEFORE the Primary elections. After the Primaries may well be too late.

If I manage to convince even five or ten people to get out in the Primary and vote for Bernie, that still counts. We need to pursue every vote we can get for Bernie in the Primaries. Then we need to double-down for the general elections. That means I am going to be here Blogging For Bernie for the duration.

If you’re local in Southern California’s Inland Empire, and you like doing tee shirts, rallies, tabling, banners, and in-public events for Bernie, Lake Elsinore 4 Bernie could use your help. Debate watch parties, house parties, bumper stickers, yard signs, check. If you can’t donate time, maybe you could donate printer paper, ink cartridges, and other supplies. A few bucks to help with making these things is good too.

www.BernieSanders.com

Feel the Bern, my friends,

Dan

Dan Stafford

In An Octopus’s Garden…

Ricardo Octopus with colored-foil effect, very 60’s psychedelic and “Beatle-esque.” - Click on pic to enlarge, this one's way worth it.

Metal sculpture by Ricardo Breceda, photographic interpretation by Daniel A. Stafford, 2015.

In An Octopus’s Garden…

When the Beatles met The Octopus,
Magic happened,
They tried mightily to capture it in song,
The whole world tried to help,
Sang along,
Yet the magic broke free,
Now it’s everywhere,
A vision for you and me,
Lovingly wild and free.

Aquarianm

By: Daniel A. Stafford
(C) 09/30/2015 Poetry & Photography.

Dan Stafford

Peace, Love, And Bernie: Primaries, Primaries, Primaries! – A Call To Coding Action

I’m still amazed when people tell me they don’t know about the #FeelTheBern hashtag on Twitter and Facebook. Seriously, I just had a guy e-mail me that he had to Google it when reading my poem, “Peace, Love, And Bernie…

Honestly, I think it’s the generation just older than me who is missing out on that, but if any of you stumble on this post by some accident of web search, just click on the links above and you’ll get the drift.

Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s move on to a very important topic: primary elections. Yes, I’ve actually included a Google search result for the Millennials and certain other lackadaisical citizens who do not understand how we get straddled with lame candidates in the general elections that actually put someone in office.

(Although I suspect that many younger voters are finally getting the concept, I will not take that on faith given the mess we were handed in the 2012 election cycle.)

Simply put, primary elections are vastly-underrated, and far worse, underattended. Primaries have been being ignored at double, and even sometimes triple the rate of general elections for decades. Over at Bipartisanpolicy.org, they have an article titled “National Primary Turnout Hits A New Record Low” with regard to the 2012 primary season. There are articles all over Google about this. According to BPO’s article just referenced, overall voter turnout in the primary elections for 2012 were just over 15% of eligible voters.  That is EXACTLY why we are in this mess.

Bottom-line, primary elections are where voters have the greatest choice. You can not continuously ignore the primary elections in a country and expect the outcome to be anything worthwhile. The only time we have a chance to put a non-corporate candidate into office is during the primary election.

It seems to me that the only people who have been voting in primaries are the radical right and Democrats who are afraid to put in a candidate who is not somewhat of a right-wing corporatist, because they know that the Democratic party will have to run against exptremist candidates on the GOP side. These Democrats have fallen for the old media lines, because the young voters who ignore the old media have stayed home on primary day.  Maybe they associate voting with being old, maybe they see it as putting energy into a corrupt system, but whatever it is, they had best get savvy about the primaries.

If the majority of the US Citizenry truly want a populist government, the only way to get one is to vote in a populist government. That means getting out there and voting for the candidates in the PRIMARIES who agree with your policy wishes.

This is where I think that those who #FeelTheBern could foil the political analysts calculations. Those who follow political analysis are used to calculating based on the traditionally abysmal primary voter turnout. They’re counting on the same mix of mush at the polls. If a tsunami of tuned-in voters actually shows up to vote for Bernie in the Primaries AND the general elections, Bernie will win. But that’s not enough.

In order for Bernie to actually accomplish populist, progressive policies, those policies must be written and voted through both houses of Congress and passed to Bernie‘s desk for him to sign.
The only way we will all truly WIN is if the Congressional elections are given the same care and consideration as the Presidential elections. Bernie needs a Progressive majority in Congress to be effective.

Here is where I have to call on Coders For Bernie to do something I haven’t heard about them doing. We need a one-stop shop – before the primaries, well before – where we can evaluation Congressional candidates based on their compatibility with Bernie‘s platform. That is a tall order, but it needs to be done and handed to Berners ASAP.

As it stands right now, it is just about impossible for the average working adult to take the time to research every candidate’s voting record. That is likely something that the corporate overlords are counting on. It may well be behind the reasoning of the plot they’ve cooked to find ways to push workers ever harder and for longer hours over the past few decades. An exhausted populace is not only less likely to go vote, they are far less likely to be well-educated on the candidates if they do show up at the polls.

Thankfully, computers were invented to manipulate and summarize vast quantities of data. This is where Progressives need to have a cloud-driven supercomputerish PoliticalMatch.com kind of service or app. That’s right, we need to play Suzy Matchmaker for our politicians of choice, and put them in office with like-minded pols, election cycle after election cycle. THAT, my fellow Berners, is what will save the world, and not just the day.

Dan Stafford

Dan Stafford

Peace, Love, And Bernie, The Poem…

Peace, Love, And Bernie…


There was a time when tye dye was psychedelic,
A Neptunian drug-dream wrapped in trappings,
A paper vision of peace and love and rocking roll,
One that fluttered from our fingers,
The moment Viet Nam was surrendered.

The vision was worthy,
But the Capitalists owned the sand it was built upon.

Still the wish percolated,
Bubbling at the bottom of millions of souls for decades,
A wispy current floating in the cosmic undermind,
A spice steeping throughout the waters of life.

Finally this el niño has surfaced,
Boiled to its essence,
Stirred in with Occupying sauce,
Baked in the years of capitalistic cynics,
Boiled down to a brick-hard resolve,
Thrown through the paper walls painted by corporate media.

The facade of Oz is ripped,
Tattered gilding in plain sight,
No longer regarded as anything but a weary trick.

A man came forth,
Poked his finger through the last vestiges of staged paper,
Said “let us use these bricks to rebuild.

Come warm yourselves by the fire of peaceful resolve.
Walk in love and kindness and the world will too.

Feel The Bern of a kinder and saner world.”
The fire glows now,
A Djinn finally exploded free of the bottle.

AquarianM

By: Daniel A. Stafford
(C) 09/20/2015

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Awash; Dreaming Of Climate Change...

I had a dream this morning about living in a large coastal city.

I was driving home and the road I usually took was awash up to the floorboards of my yellow Dodge Dakota pickup truck.

* Side note: It's V6 2-Wheel drive. I drive it because I'm 6'6" & 330lbs. It's the only vehicle I've found that I can extend my knees in, and don't have to climb down into. If I could afford to electrify it, I would.

So, to the dream...

I think the city on my left was Chicago, which actually is coastal. Lake Michigan is 70 miles wide and 800 miles long. The whole area was once under the sea. 

I'm not sure it actually was Chicago in the dream, but it felt like that. I used to work in downtown Chicago, and I was driving home from work in the dream.

The downtown area was above a tall concrete wall in my dream, and to my left.

The road I usually took ran into the water and came back up. I made it throught that, but then the road turned and disappeared into the water. The water was as far as the eye could see in front of me and to my right.

The only way left that I could go was along a set of railroad tracks, so I set mt left wheel over the track and on the center of the ties, and my right wheels on the ballast (rocks & gravel) to the right.

I followed the tracks East & turning North, hoping they connected to another road where I could turn into the city.

At the last possible point where I might have been able to turn in, there was an encampment of people blocking the tracks. Past them was open water.

The people had lawn chairs and coolers and charcoal grills. I was trying to tell them that the water was rising, but my alarm went off.

My wife Saren just told me that she also had a dream of flooding this morning. She was with me and a realtor looking at houses in Southern Florida.

Every house we were shown had a foot of water inside. The realto was trying to fluff it off like it was nothing, and we were laughing our heads off.

Dan

Peace, Love, And Bernie

It’s become quite obvious to me that the Bernie Sanders movement – and yes, it clearly is – has become the inheritor of the 1960’s Flower Children and the early 2000’s Occupy movement converged.

The elements of civil rights, environmentalism, anti-establishment, and anti-war are all present. So is the notion of loving respect for fellow Berners. I’ve even seen very hippie-fied Bernie hair pics done up in tye-dye and green-Earth themes. It wouldn’t shock me to see a fleet of Beetle busses driving around with Bernie hair on the paint job. All that’s missing are the drugs, sex, and rock…well, actually there is a lot of music.

Yet that’s the crucial difference here. This is a movement that has no time for a drug-induced dreamland, and sex will take care of itself after the world is saved. This movement has the loving heart of the Hippie movement combined with the grown-up pragmatism and technical prowess of Millennials and Boomers who created the technology that has all but rendered old-guard print and television media obsolete.

There are thousands of coders working online to help spread the word, and many tens of thousands of tireless social media users sharing Bernie news, with a feeling of hope for the future that is far deeper and more credible than centrist Barak Obama’s vague and tepid “hope and change” ever were.
On top of the that, African American, Latino, Native American, and Asian segments of the US population are starting to catch fire and #FeelTheBern as well. By the time the actual primaries roll around, the corporate media should be in for quite a shock.

People in the majority in this country are not stupid, nor are they gullible. They simply haven’t seen a good reason to believe that anyone on prior ballots for gives a rat’s ass about them. The closest thing was the Obama elections of 2008. Obama’s 2008 election drew young folk in to vote in numbers never before seen. However, older voters who were more jaded still hadn’t seen a reason to engage. Obama’s 2005 vote in favor of the bankruptcy bill as a Senator, among other actions by the soon-to-be POTUS, were clear signals of a moderate, corporatist Democratic candidate who didn’t herald an era of Progressive change that would swing the world in a positive direction. Therefore the older population of eligible but unlikely voters stayed home.

I do not discredit the accomplishments of the Obama administration. Barak Obama did stop the global economy from going off a cliff. He did achieve some step forward on healthcare. He has taken steps on climate change and infrastructure investment. He gave us a modified version of the status-quo prior to the debacle brought on by the Bush-Chaney war machine. Wage stagnation wasn’t addressed, but we still have an automotive industry. Health insurance coverage has improved, but the insurance companies are still for-profit, and the US still spends double the amount on healthcare that other “First-World” nations do, without achieving full-coverage of all US Citizens. The Republicans in Congress have stifled any deeper change in the structure of US society in economic and technical senses. Defense contractors, fossil fuel companies, insurance providers, big pharma, and not-least banksters are still doing phenomenally well. Joe and Jane Average are not.

Still, Bernie Sanders’s clearly-Progressive agenda would go much farther and deeper towards bedrock changes in US civil society, the US economy, and US infrastructure. Voters are far more aware now of the need for a Congress that will work with such a President. It is known to many of his followers that Bernie Sanders would be a committed front man for the cause, and who would show Congress no mercy in speeches or statements. The greater majority of citizens of all races agree with the policy positions Bernie is putting forth. Most importantly, Bernie Sanders has a clear and consistent track record on every issue going back for decades. Voters no longer believe “they’re all liars and cheats.” Bernie Sanders clearly is not.

So when the voting lines are long for the Primary elections, don’t be surprised by that. Certainly do not be surprised if you see flowers settled in hair both young and gray, and possibly a flowery microbus with Bernie hair and glasses on it’s face or sides. Put some flowers in your own hair, and post, vote, and #FeelTheBern in good conscience. Take a spin around www.BernieSanders.com and be happy to share the love of $10, $20, or even $30 like many tens of thousands of other Berners. Swell the crowds at local Bernie rallies. The vibe is great, and the future smells better, with more than a hint of reality.

Revel in the marvel of Peace, Love, and Bernie.



Dan Stafford

Elvis Week 2015 is here…


Click to enlarge pics

Additional info on Elvis’s death and subsequent events can be found at http://www.elvis.com.au/presley/biography/the_death_of_elvis_presley_august_16_1977.shtml

Dan Stafford

Had Fun At The French Valley Airport Cafe






They had one of the 2nd-generation Platters out there – Jerome – playing a birthday party & singing Motown hits mixed with 50’s – 60’s tunes. He was really good, and did credible musical imitations of Louis Armstrong, Neil Diamond, Percy Sledge, and also Wolfman Jack.

It was a lot of fun, and we got to sit on the flightline and watch the planes go up and down between the mountains, and even danced a bit. Food was great too – not rushed.

Dan Stafford

Independent expert confirms that the “impossible” EM Drive actually works – ScienceAlert

http://www.sciencealert.com/independent-scientists-confirm-that-the-impossible-em-drive-produces-thrust

Dan Stafford

‘For The Love Of Spock’ Documentary Launches On Kickstarter


http://uproxx.com/gammasquad/2015/06/star-trek-spock-leonard-nimoy-documentary-kickstarter/

\\//_

 Dan Stafford

Look up! NASA is going to be testing a flying saucer over Hawaii – ScienceAlert

http://www.sciencealert.com/look-up-nasa-is-going-to-be-testing-a-flying-saucer-over-hawaii

Dan Stafford

Japanese scientists reverse ageing in human cell lines – ScienceAlert

http://www.sciencealert.com/japanese-scientists-reverse-ageing-in-human-cell-lines

Dan Stafford

Tomorrowland…

By far the best movie I have seen since the 80’s. At least. I can’t be too direct here, but there’s something in this movie that has been missing almost everywhere in TV and Cinema for a very, very long time. I strongly urge everyone to see it. I love the acting, I love the sci-fi, the romance, and the wolves. If a rocket pack and anti-gravity can’t lift you up, maybe a little boy-and-girl love story can. The visuals are fantastic, and I love the acting too. Go. See.
100/10… ​


Dan Stafford

Sun Ring Over Temecula, CA Right Now

Click to enlarge pic
Dan Stafford

Build A Dyson Ring for space Launch Without Exotic Tech Or Materials


Many of you have probably heard of a Dyson Sphere.
About a year ago, I had an inspiration to build a similar mega-structure around the Earth as a measure to gain consistent and rapid space-launch capacity. I call the concept a “Dyson Ring.”

The idea is to build an artificial ring around the Earth, starting at an altitude of 65,000 feet above equatorial sea level. (65 Kft is around the altitude ceiling of a hot air balloon equipped with a pressurized cabin.)

The initial ring could be lofted by a large fleet of hot air balloons, and pulled into a locked position using steel cables.

I had the idea to make the initial structure out of Roman Concrete. (Roman concrete was recently re-discovered by modern scientists. It has lasted in ocean breaker walls at old Roman port cities with barely any damage for over 2,000 years, whereas modern Portland cement deteriorates in 50 years when exposed to the elements. The stuff is nearly indestructible.)

The “Rcrete” modules would be shaped to interlock at the ends. All modules would be laid out end-to-end and strung together with steel cables. They would be lofted pretty much all at once with a massive fleet of balloons, and then winched into position using the steel cabling and robotic guides.
Once the initial ring structure was up, it would circle the Earth and gravity would hold it in place. (Since gravity would be pulling on it pretty much equally from every direction.)

At that point, the balloon fleet would continuously stream new Rcrete modules up to the ring, and you could continuously build on top of it (from all sides as equally as possible) until it was fairly wide and reached above the atmosphere.

As the structure was built, wind and solar generators, plumbing, transport tubes, and all sorts of goodies could be built into the ring. Once it was above the atmosphere, solar-powered mass drivers could be built on top of the ring structure to achieve high-speed launches in all directions.
A steady stream of balloons could transport cargo to and from the lower extremity of the ring.

The device could be many things: A planetary power source, a planetary transportation system, an aerial farm, a global communications and network distribution system, a large-scale and high-altitude telescope platform, and most-importantly a space-access system going BOTH directions.
None of the technology required to erect this device exceeds our current technological abilities, the only truly daunting facet is its sheer scale.

Dan

Dyson Ring around Earth

Dan Stafford

Science Alert; Obesity:

http://www.sciencealert.com/sugar-and-carbs-not-physical-inactivity-behind-surge-in-obesity-say-experts

Dan Stafford

Google Has A Defined-Command Language Built Into Its Search Engine…

A discovery I made completely by accident: Google has built-in a defined command language in their search engine, much like commands in DOS, UNIX, or an Alcatel/DSC 600E long distance voice switch, or similar to TL1 commands in a lot of telecomm gear. Examples: ” translate: english to spanish; thursday” , and “Define: automobile” .

The placing of the colons and semicolons is important, just as it is in a TL1 command. If you put either of those commands in a Google search box without the quotation remarks, you will get either the English-to-Spanish translation of “Thursday,” or the English definition of “automobile.”

I’m thinking you might be able to define words in another language as well by using a semicolon to specify the language of the word you need defined. Maybe like “Define: Portuguese;  "barco” or something like that.

Alternatively instead of the English word “Define” as the command, maybe the Portuguese word of the same meaning as the command. So far, these are the only two commands I have discovered, but I wonder what else is hiding under Google’s hood…


Here’s another set of commands called “search operators”: https://support.google.com/websearch/answer/2466433

Weather: Search weather to see the weather in your location or add a city name, like weather seattle, to find weather for a certain place.

Dictionary: Put define in front of any word to see its definition.

Calculations: Enter a math equation like 3*9123, or solve complex graphing equations.

Unit conversions: Enter any conversion, like 3 dollars in euros.

Sports: Search for the name of your team to see a schedule, game scores and more.

Quick facts: Search for the name of a celebrity, location, movie, or song to find related information.

Dan
 
Dan Stafford

New evidence suggests the Brontosaurus could be real after all.


 
Dan Stafford

Researchers explore ‘light therapy’ as treatment for Gulf War veterans



Dan Stafford

Single-particle ‘spooky action at a distance’ demonstrated for the first time – ScienceAlert


http://www.sciencealert.com/spooky-action-at-a-distance-in-a-single-particle-has-been-demonstrated-for-the-first-time
 
Dan Stafford

NASA Mobile | NASA TV


http://mobile.nasa.gov/
 
Dan Stafford

From Redorbit.com: Russia Proposes Superhighway From UK To USA


http://www.redorbit.com/news/technology/1113359238/russians-propose-superhighway-to-connect-uk-to-us-03261/

This is actually pretty fascinating. You would be able to drive (or take a train) all the way from London to New York. Of course, it would likely take you at least three weeks of hard driving to go the full distance. The full route goes through both Europe and Asia to cross the Bering Strait into Alaska. You would then have to drive through Canada and across North America.

It may sound wild, but I actually like it. Perhaps it would open up new lines of communication between the regular folk of all these nations, enough so that wars could be avoided. Hmm, where have I heard that before??

Still, I like the idea. New connections often lead to positive changes, even if they don’t change the baser nature of world politics.

Get your words on, and maybe your driving gloves,

Dan
 
Dan Stafford

Treasure Hunt of NYC — Wanderer


http://wandererblog.squarespace.com/writing/2015/3/24/treasure-hunt-of-nyc

I enjoyed this blogger’s post for several reasons, but the advice to writers from one of her mentors really resonated with me. If you write, I think it’s well worth a read.

As you all know, I tend to post a lot of external stories and don’t put a lot of my own personality and thoughts out here on this blog. At some point, somehow, in the non-stop business of trying to live in this “capitalism amok” world of ours, and all the changes coming about in my personal life, I have to find time for journaling.

I need to make the point of that George Saunders quote – from Ashley’s blog post linked above – one of my mantras.

Get your words on,

Dan
 
Dan Stafford

Global warming is now slowing down the circulation of the oceans — with potentially dire consequences – The Washington Post


http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2015/03/23/global-warming-is-now-slowing-down-the-circulation-of-the-oceans-with-potentially-dire-consequences/?tid=sm_fb
 
Dan Stafford

Fresh strawberries off the farm truck.


I love that about Cali. One if my favorite memories as a child was when Noni (Sadie Nofri, my grandmother) would take ne along to pick strawberries right out of the field somewhere around Beloit as a pre-school toddler. Yeah, they to grow stuff other than corn and soybeans around there, can you imagine?



Lost city discovered in Honduras – Science News – redOrbit



Dan Stafford

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Los Molcajetes Tomales of Wildomar, California…

I loved this place from the minute I saw it passing by on the way to Ortega Highway as I was cutting through the mountains between Temecula and Orange county. The place was jumping off the street at me, and I’ve been wanting to stop there for months. Today was the day.

Molcajetes is independent, not even a web site or email, but that’s fine with me. They have a full menu, not just tamales, but when it says "tamales" on the side of the building, you can bet that’s what they’re known for!

There is a small seating àrea inside, but I was in a hurry and had to take my tamales to go. I tried three kinds.

The pork and chicken tamales were generous of size and perfectly-made, a wonderful treat and I would recommend Molcajetes for that alone.

That said, OMG THE PINAPPLE-COCONUT TAMALES ARE AMAZING!!!

I have never had anything like this dessert tamale, and it is spectacularly wonderful! A little larger than the generous dinner tamales, they are ample. The texture is different, a little more like cornbread cake than the teaditional "fried polenta" texture of dinner tomales. I suspect that has to do with the coconut in them. The coconut must be ground, not shredded. It doesn’t get between your teeth, which I hate. The flavor was a subtly-sweet and gentle blend of corn, coconut, and pineapple that is warm and wonderful and melts in your mouth. You have to taste it to believe it!!

The restaurant was staffed by a pleasant 30-something couple that I think are the owners. I will definitely be back to find out!

Go, and pray that they always have these wonders of the pineapple dish kingdom!

I am in love.

Dan




My Little Box Of Sky…

My Little Box Of Sky…

I didn’t know that ravens flocked,
Until I saw them flying home for the evening.

It’s January in Southern California,
A time of cool evenings as the three-quarters Moon waxes above me.

Palm fronds wave at me as I chill with a cigar,
Watching magenta fade from the clouds.

I have moved over two-thousand miles,
And now I’ve unpacked my little box of sky.

A hummingbird meandered down the fence line this morning,
Just over the blooming lemon tree over our kitchen window.

The paint in the house is drying,
But never does it dry above me.

AquarianM

By: Daniel A. Stafford
© 1/30/2015

Click to enlarge pic

Neuroscientists successfully manipulate brain activity with pulses of laser light



Dan Stafford

Downtown Chicago Gets Its Christmas Sparkle Back…

Now that it’s past Thanksgiving, downtown is once again lighting up for Christmas. It’s even beautiful in the quiet office districts.

Below, you’ll see the city beginning to go green and red as you cruise in on I-290, and the Christmas tree and wreath at 101 North Wacker Drive.

Simple Things…

Simple Things…

The corn was high then in the fields,
The water was blue,
The sky too.

And how the sun shone in your hair,
Sweet and fair,
Like sweet fresh air…

It’s the simple things,
Always the simple things…

Clean fresh air,
Breathe you there,
Clovers green,
A heart’s innocence makes the scene,
A special thing,
On which to dream,
On which to dream.

Hearts open like a book,
Turn the pages,
Take a look,
A love for the ages,
Could not be shook,
Could not be shook.

In those green fields I fell to you,
And all your wishes I wished I knew,
How to give to you,
How to give to you.
The turns and twists always take me back,
To the memories you made for me,
Never fade,
Never age,
Still on track.

It’s the simple things,
Always the simple things…

Clean fresh air,
Breathe you there,
Clovers green,
A heart’s innocence makes the scene,
A special thing,
On which to dream,
On which to dream.

And how the sun shone in your hair,
Sweet and fair,
Like sweet fresh air…

It’s the simple things,
Always the simple things…

AquarianM

By: Daniel A. Stafford
© 11/21/2014

Dan Stafford