Thursday, May 31, 2007

Political Correctness Produces Fear

Michael Griffin, NASA's top guy is not afraid of global warming. You can see that plainly in the AP article below. What else can we see in this article. I can see fear. If you are not always 'politically correct' and if you dare oppose the liberal lunatic agenda you better beware. Griffin made some brave but abrasive statements about global warming and the fear mongers promoting the same. He was called "totally clueless" and was placed into their little basket of dangerous offenders. Shamefully, the White House blushes and slowly backs away from Griffin and his comments.

NASA Chief Not Worried About Climate
Thursday, May 31st, 2007 at 10:40am WASHINGTON

The head of NASA drew criticism from scientists when he said he was not sure global warming was a problem and added that it would be "arrogant" to assume the world's climate should not change in the future.

"I have no doubt that global _ that a trend of global warming exists," NASA Administrator Michael Griffin said in a taped interview that aired Thursday on National Public Radio. "I am not sure that it is fair to say that is a problem we must wrestle with."

"I guess I would ask which human beings, where and when, are to be accorded the privilege of deciding that this particular climate that we have right here today, right now, is the best climate for all other human beings. I think that's a rather arrogant position for people to take," Griffin said.

Jerry Mahlman, a former top scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration who is now at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, said Griffin's remarks showed he was either "totally clueless" or "a deep anti-global warming ideologue."

James Hansen, a top NASA climate scientist, said Griffin's comments showed "arrogance and ignorance," because millions of people will likely be harmed by global warming in the future.

White House science adviser Jack Marburger said he was not disturbed by Griffin's remarks, but distanced them from President Bush, who on Thursday announced an international global warming proposal.

"It's pretty obvious that the NASA administrator was speaking about his own personal views and by no means representing or attempting to represent the administration's views or broader policy," Marburger told The Associated Press. "He's got a very wry sense of humor and is very outspoken."

NASA spokesman David Mould said the radio interviewer was trying to push Griffin into saying something about global warming. NASA's position is that it provides scientific data on the issue, but policy makers are the ones who decide, he said.

Come on people, if we stand for nothing - we will fall for anything. Political Correctness is ruining our society. Global warming is natural and has always been around. It always will be. Let's stand up like Griffin and not slouch, as some who live in fear do.

Thought You'd Never Ask: Why I'll never vote for Hillary (part 2)

Zabrina did it again! Another great post. If she keeps this up I'm adding her to my favorites list.

I feel so inadequate. I wanted to do a post on Hillary and she's outdone me again. I'll still take my shot later but, I could never do it as good as she. You must check out this great post -

Thought You'd Never Ask: Why I'll never vote for Hillary (part 2)

Add A Caption 21

Who has a caption for this photo?

This was a tough call but,
we'll give it to
Anderson Nation who said...

You need to get a bit more flexible. Relax, here, have a beer!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Safe Driving?

Here is a test question which was sent to me by a highway patrolman. Try to answer it as best you can. Take your time and do your best.

You are driving in a car at a constant speed. On your left side is a 'drop off' (The ground is 18-20 inches below the level you are traveling on), and on your right side is a fire engine traveling at the same speed as you. In front of you is a galloping horse which is the same size as your car and you cannot over take it. Behind you is another galloping horse. Both horses are traveling at the same speed as you. What must you do to safely get out of this highly dangerous situation?

Next week I will post the answer in comments if no one gets it correct.
Highway Patrolmen are not eligible to participate.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Reality TV For Everyone

I can honestly state that I don't watch reality TV. I know there are many closet reality watches which enjoy these programs in secret but, I don't see the allure of them. I've seen 'The Amazing Race' a few times and it was somewhat entertaining but, that's about it. I've never seen 'Big Brother'. Not one time. Not even one minute. I believe this is the show that started it all. I simply have no interest in this type of . . . entertainment. Entertainment?

Well, I guess many do watch reality TV or they wouldn't keep producing them. And produce them they do. Since the creation of this crap there has been a massive invasion of more and more reality for our idiot boxes. They have reality shows for just about everything and everyone. What, you haven't had enough yet? You need a show which appeals directly to you? There is a new one coming your way. Maybe this program will keep you glued to your television.

I've got a great and creative idea for a new show. How about a show on kidney transplants? No, not a documentary of the surgery but, something more riveting. Stay with me now. Picture this - a terminally ill woman will select one of three patients to receive her kidneys! That should work for ya.

She will make her choice based on the contestants' history, profile and conversation with their family and friends.

Viewers will also be able to send in their advice by text message during the 80-minute show. Yup, 80 minutes. We all know a 60 minute program just wouldn't be enough!

Ah, damn! Someone beat me to it! Wouldn't you know. I guess I'm not they only creative guy around. It turns out that Dutch television is way ahead of me. Wait, wait! There seems to be a lot of controversy surrounding this program over there. Perhaps, I still could sell this idea to Hollywood. Surely, we here in America can see the need for this stuff. Hell, we don't have enough good entertainment on our televisions yet. We need more reality and this could help fill the void. I know I'm onto something here.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Day Observation

Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on 5 May 1868 and was first observed on 30 May 1868. It is now celebrated in almost every State on the last Monday in May. In 1915 a woman named Moina Michael conceived of an idea to wear red poppies on Memorial day in honor of those who died serving the nation during war. She was the first to wear one, and sold poppies to her friends and co-workers with the money going to benefit servicemen in need. This tradition soon spread to other countries. in 1922 the VFW became the first veterans' organization to nationally sell poppies. Two years later their "Buddy" Poppy program was selling artificial poppies made by disabled veterans. Sadly, many Americans todays have forgotten the true meaning of Memorial Day.

Here is what everyone shoud be doing -
  • visiting cemeteries and placing flags or flowers on the graves of our fallen heroes.

  • visiting memorials.

  • flying the U.S. Flag at half-staff until noon.

  • flying the 'POW/MIA Flag' as well

  • by participating in a "National Moment of Remembrance": at 3 p.m. to pause and think upon the true meaning of the day, and for Taps to be played.

  • by renewing a pledge to aid the widows, widowers, and orphans of our falled dead, and to aid the disabled veterans.

Here is Cpl. Levi T. Angell. A hometown hero that gave his all for our freedoms. Pray for him and his family.

Lance Cpl. Levi T Angell, 20, of Saint Louis, Minn., died April 8 due to injuries received from hostile fire in Al Anbar Province, Iraq. He was assigned to Combat Service Support Group 11, 1st Force Service Support Group, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Local History

Here is a photo of the construction of a paper mill
(the Northwest Paper Company)
in my hometown from 1898

Saturday, May 26, 2007

My Dub Shirts Arrived

My Sgt. Dub shirts arrived Thursday! I was off to work when they came in and didn't have time to post this until now. Wow, was that service fast. We ordered them last Monday making it only a four day wait, from start to finish. And that's with normal shipping through the U.S. Postal Service. I was kind of bumming because I felt I ordered them too late. I wanted badly to sport them on Memorial Day, you see. Looks like I'll be showing them off on the holiday after all.

For those that don't know, these shirts were ordered from Sgt. Dub. I've written about him before, albeit briefly, and even have a favorite link to his site on my sidebar. He is a great man with a great blog. If you haven't checked his site out it's a must do. His blog has daily postings about his tour in Afghanistan. His second tour that is! It is a well written and very personable blog. You can tell, in short order, that you would like this man had you the fortune enough to meet him on the street.

This purchase was simply one tiny way of showing my support and admiration for his patriotic sacrifices. The saying on the shirt struck me as very clever. And how true. I can't praise the good Sgt. and his family enough. I can't give enough praise to all who sacrifice for our country.

Also, if anyone is wondering why two shirts were ordered the reasoning is quit simple. When my wife saw what I wanted to order she, too, had to have one. Now we are both ready for the big holiday.

Lastly, I mentioned everyone should check out his blog but, failed to mention you should hurry. He is now a short-timer with under a month to go! I do think I read, somewhere on his site, that he was going to continue blogging when he got stateside, though I can't be sure. I truly hope so.

Stay safe Sarge. You're almost there.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Daddy's Empty Chair

A man's daughter had asked the local minister to come and pray with her father. When the minister arrived, he found the man lying in bed with his head propped up on two pillows. An empty chair sat beside his bed. The minister assumed that the old fellow had been informed of his visit.

"I guess you were expecting me", he said.

'No, who are you?" said the father.

The minister told him his name and then remarked, "I saw the empty chair and I figured you knew I was going to show up."

"Oh yeah, the chair," said the bedridden man. "Would you mind closing the door?"

Puzzled, the minister shut the door.

"I have never told anyone this, not even my daughter," said the man. "But all of my life I have never known how to pray. At church I used to hear the pastor talk about prayer, but it went right over my head." I abandoned any attempt at prayer," the old man continued, "until one day four years ago, my best friend said to me, "Johnny, prayer is just a simple matter of having a conversation with Jesus. Here is what I suggest. Sit down in a chair; place an empty chair in front of you, and in faith see Jesus on the chair. It's not spooky because he promised, 'I will be with you always'. Then just speak to him in the same way you're doing with me right now."

"So, I tried it and I've liked it so much that I do it a couple of hours every day. I'm careful though If my daughter saw me talking to an empty chair, she'd either have a nervous breakdown or send me off to the funny farm."

The minister was deeply moved by the story and encouraged the old man to continue on the journey. Then he prayed with him, anointed him with oil, and returned to the church.

Two nights later the daughter called to tell the minister that her daddy had died that afternoon.

Did he die in peace?" he asked.

Yes, when I left the house about two o'clock, he called me over to his bedside, told me he loved me and kissed me on the cheek. When I got back from the store an hour later, I found him dead. But there was something strange about his death. Apparently, just before Daddy died, he leaned over and rested his head on the chair beside the bed. What do you make of that?"

The minister wiped a tear from his eye and said, "I wish we could all go like that."

received in an email

Add A Caption 20

Is this guy being arrested, mugged, or what? You decide.
Try adding a caption for this photo.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007


We put one of these feed bags with thistle in our backyard for the last three years and it was never used. This spring my wife said we should not waste our money putting out one this year. For the last couple of days it has been used by up to three birds at a time. My wife has yet to see this so this afternoon I tried to document the event with a photo. Well, there were three birds on it when I stepped onto the deck with my camera. Two of them flew away instantly. The remaining bird looked at me but wouldn't stay that way for a photo. He is not headless but it's back end was all I could manage to get. When I have more time I will try for a real photo.

Music Trivia 10

What 1996 tune starts as follows ? -

I met my girl on a mountain side
Looking for warmth and a place to hide

and who performs it?

Wow, I didn't think I'd get an answer this quick but,

Sunni Kay correctly said...

Mountain Cry by Blues Traveler

Monday, May 21, 2007

Niece Marries

My niece got married last Saturday. The groom is a wonderful guy. His family is awesome. She is a lucky gal and he is a lucky man. I will be posting pics of their reception shortly.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Some in Minnesota Back Higher Gas Tax

Well, communist-leaning Minnesota is at it again. Minnesota lawmakers are trying to invoke a new gas tax. What timing. The price of gasoline is soaring higher than ever before and they want to add to the problem. I thought our elected leaders were placed in their positions to solve problems. Some states which don't lean so much to the left are actually supplying relief to their drivers. Texas and Connecticut, for example, are proposing tax holidays for their summer months. Minnesota has proven again, however, that it just loves taxing it's residents.

Governor Pawlenty has vetoed the evil plan but, an override is still possible. With the current gas tax being at 22 cents/gallon, this legislation would bring it to 27 cents or higher. Thanks guys.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Refreshing the Rider

My brother and I worked on my riding lawnmower today. The wife said get the lawn cut or else but. the rider wasn't cooperating. She is a Sabre brand (made by John Deere) with a 15.5 HP motor and a 38 inch cut. It had a flat tire and a dead battery. So off to work we went. I dropped the tire off to be repaired and was told it couldn't be repaired. I either needed to have a tube put in or purchase a new tire. I selected the new tire.

I picked up the battery and left my wheel and old tire to be replaced. When I got home I installed the new battery. Here is where the fun began. She still wouldn't start! After getting her to turn over a couple of times she soon flooded. And she flooded good. Suddenly I had more gas than oil where the oil was supposed to be.

So I drained the oil (or should I say gas) and put some new oil in. While the oil was draining I figured I should check the spark plug. I carefully tried to pull the spark plug wire but, it was very stubborn and I had little room for my hand. Eventually I gave the wire a big yank and off it came. It came off without it's proper end that is.

Now, I had to repair the wire and put the terminal back on it's end. About this time my brother arrived with his electrical tester. After putting the plug with the fixed wire back in the tractor still would not start. At this point I put my camera away because my hands were getting too greasy. I should have left my brother to do all the work and then I could have kept on taking pictures. At any rate, we did many electrical tests on the beast including all the safety switches. There was a seat switch to test. A brake switch to test. The lever for engaging the blades even had a switch which we tested. Somewhere in all this testing we took a break and decided to come back to it with a fresh outlook.

My brother went home for a while and after some coffee I went back to the garage. At some point I figured out that I could pull the lever which engaged the blades about a quarter inch further down if I used some effort. Ah, this allowed the mower to start every time. It seemed as though it would not engage the safety switch unless some extra exertion was applied. Problem solved? Nope! It would now start every time but, as soon as the brake was released or the blades were engaged it would die. This didn't do me a lot of good. I called my brother with the new discovery and asked him to return with his tester.

My brother arrived and we tested everything we tested before and a few extra things were tested. We scratched our collective heads for some time and tried various fixes to no avail. In the mean time, we reinstalled the tire (which I had my wife pick up) and we greased some fittings.

We went back to concentrating on the lever which engages the blades and he eventually discovered it was a mechanical problem and not electrical in nature. He followed the blade lever down and watched it in action under the chassis. There was a long threaded rod under there with a spring on one end. This rod is what engages the switch when the blade lever is in the lower position. It took a few stubborn turns on this rod to give it the right reach. We started the bad boy now with much anticipation. She fired. I released the brake and she still ran. Now the real test. I engaged the blades. The blades immediately started turning and amazingly the motor kept going. Finally! My brother did note that soon, very soon the rod would need more work. It was pretty much at it's end of adjustment and the bracket that supports one end is almost worn through. I decide to save this for another day because if I didn't get the hay mowed soon my wife was going to hang me. Better to mow now, while I can, and tear it apart for further repairs afterwards.

For now she's back together. I still need to give her a good cleaning. I will try to mow the yard tomorrow and then I will clean her up good. Later (not too much later) I will have to work on the rod that's in such poor shape. Hey, maybe I can get my brother to do it so I am free to take photos for the blog.

Hola, Americanos

My wife recently purchased this mayonnaise from the local grocery store. We live in a small town in northern Minnesota. What is wrong with this picture? Notice how the primary language on these labels is in a foreign language. It was bad enough to see multiple languages on everything around us. Now it's gotten worse - English has been demoted to a secondary position. Where will it stop? Life in America is very, peculiar these days. Adios.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Federal Government Slacking

Everyone hears me spout about less government and less regulations. I preach this all the time. What about the laws that are already on the books, though? I say if the law is in place - enforce it. Now if you don't like the law, change it or eliminate it, but if the law is on the books then we must go by them. Otherwise, why have a legal system at all? Everyone should, also, know my stand on illegal immigrants, by now.

Now here is an article describing a town's problems concerning it's passing of an ordinance regarding the prohibition of renting to illegals. Good for them, but civil liberties advocates want to ban the ban. Again, illegals are illegal (I know that's a tough concept). If a town wants to prevent them from moving into their community they are only doing what the federal government is failing to do, ie enforcing the laws that are on the books. If the federal government were doing it's job this would not even be a local issue.
Groups: Block Texas Town's Immigrant Ban
Tuesday, May 15th, 2007 at 11:23am DALLAS

Latino activists and civil liberties advocates asked a federal judge Tuesday to block a voter-approved ordinance that prohibits landlords from renting apartments to most illegal immigrants in the Dallas suburb of Farmers Branch.

The Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund and the American Civil Liberties Union, which have already sued the city, requested the temporary restraining order in U.S. District Court.

The ordinance, scheduled to take effect next Tuesday, requires apartment managers to verify that renters are U.S. citizens or legal immigrants before leasing to them, with some exceptions. Violators face fines of up to $500.

"It is unfortunate that the residents of Farmers Branch have chosen to implement a law which is not only bad policy, but is likely also unconstitutional," said Lisa Graybill, legal director for the ACLU of Texas. "Now the issue will have to be resolved in federal court."

City council members first approved the ban in November without discussion, then revised it in January to include exemptions for minors, seniors and some mixed-status families. On Saturday, residents voted to approve the ban with 68 percent of voters in favor, according to unofficial results.

Councilman Tim O'Hare, the ordinance's lead proponent, contends the city's economy and quality of life will improve if illegal immigrants are kept out. O'Hare declined to comment Tuesday.

Since 1970, Farmers Branch has changed from a small, predominantly white bedroom community with a declining population to a city of almost 28,000 people, about 37 percent of them Hispanic, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Farmers Branch already faces four lawsuits brought by civil rights groups, residents, property owners and businesses, who say the ordinance discriminates and puts landlords in the precarious position of acting as federal immigration officers. Their attorneys argue the ordinance attempts to regulate immigration, a duty that is exclusively the federal government's.

Nationwide, more than 90 local governments have proposed, passed or rejected laws prohibiting landlords from leasing to illegal immigrants, penalizing businesses that employ them or training police to enforce immigration laws.

Someone tell me how this ordinance is unconstitutional. I have no problem with protecting the rights of our citizens regardless of their race, religious affiliation, sex, age, and so on. I do not feel illegals are afforded the same rights. If you what the rights that American's hold so dear then become an American. Until then - shut up.

Monday, May 14, 2007

More Politically Correct Nonsense

It's coming people! Below is an AP article from August of 2005. Remember, large sized people, they are coming after you next. Jump on your bikes and get out of the fray now or call your lawyers and join the struggle for your rights. The battle is just begining and many of you are right in the middle. Good luck and don't let anyone insult you.

You just can't make this stuff up ...

From AP:
As doctors warn more patients that they should lose weight, the advice has backfired on one doctor with a woman filing a complaint with the state saying he was hurtful, not helpful.

Dr. Terry Bennett says he tells obese patients their weight is bad for their health and their love lives, but the lecture drove one patient to complain to the state.

"I told a fat woman she was obese," Bennett says. "I tried to get her attention. I told her, 'You need to get on a program, join a group of like-minded people and peel off the weight that is going to kill you.' "

He says he wrote a letter of apology to the woman when he found out she was offended.

Her complaint, filed about a year ago, was initially investigated by a panel of the New Hampshire Board of Medicine, which recommended that Bennett be sent a confidential letter of concern. The board rejected the suggestion in December and asked the attorney general's office to investigate.

Bennett rejected that office's proposal that he attend a medical education course and acknowledge that he made a mistake.

Bruce Friedman, chairman of the board of medicine, said he could not discuss specific complaints. Assistant Attorney General Catherine Bernhard, who conducted the investigation, also would not comment, citing state law that complaints are confidential until the board takes disciplinary action.

The board's Web site says disciplinary sanctions may range from a reprimand to the revocation of all rights to practice in the state.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

My Predictions Proving Accurate Again

Minnesota's House and Senate have now both passed the new state-wide smoking ban. The oppressive bill simply waits for Governor Pawlenty's signature and he is expected to give it approval. Much has been said over the years on smoking bans, both pro and con, but I want to point out some lesser know ideas in this debate.

Let me begin by stating my predictions are already coming to light. For a long time now I have been telling people to watch out for their rights. Many of the non-smokers I know have taken an I-don't-care attitude whenever smoker's rights have become threatened. I always remind them to have a little more interest and not ignore the issue simply because it appears not to effect them directly. I always said that these Liberal Lunatics are power hungry. That these oppressive people will not stop at smoking legislation. That these busy-body communists must always have an agenda. I have stated and continue to preach the fact that these control freaks will never stop at the demise of smoking. They will continue on with new liberty restricting, fanatical programs. The smoking ban may not affect you but, what happens when they are busting your door down? Today their focus is on smoking. Tomorrow they will turn to something you care about.

How about you hunters and gun-toters. Will your rights be more seriously challenged? Do you love to fish? Hey, animals have rights, too! What about you gardeners and plant lovers. Will you be restricted from putting certain plants in your own yard in the future. Do you like short skirts? They are offensive to some. I think high-heels shoes are dangerous. Let's ban them. Tattoos and piercings offend me. They got to go. Do you feel you know how to raise your own children properly. Ha. Let's let the schools, government, or your friendly neighborhood corrections alliance group handle these mundane chores. I feel brightly colored cars sometimes blind me when I'm driving. Let's outlaw them. Here's one, be warned - I hate pets. All animals belong in the wild. You animal lovers look out. Why should I have to put up with shit in my yard, or neighborhood, for that matter? Why do I have to listen to that annoying barking? What about all them attacks I read about, in the papers. I fear for my safety whenever a dog, make that beast, is around. Let's not even get into the cat (yuk) discussion. The point is this list could, and will, go on and on. It won't be long until something you care about is in jeopardy! Be ready for your day!

Ah, back to my accurate prognostication. As I've said, I predicted further erosions of rights when the loonies feel their current dockets have been sufficiently met. Well, in todays Duluth News Tribune, DFL Rep. Tom Huntley bodly states, " . . . he is ready to move on to another health issue — obesity." Ha, the ink is not even dry yet. In fact, the governor hasn't even signed the bill yet, though we know he will. They must always have their soapbox and/or agenda and as one right is sufficiently eliminated it's time to move on and work toward abolishing another right! And let's waste no time in doing so. Are they in your backyard yet?

OK, fatties ( is that OK to say?) they are coming for you. At one time I would never have thought to assist the communist liberal lunatics but, I am now currently tempted. So put down your triple-dipped, sugar laced, fat-inducing, mile-high, mega-sized, bon-bon flavored, mid-morning, fat-fried, super-deluxe ice cream treat for just a moment, if you can. Pull your mega-sized, treat stained gut out of the way, wipe the frosting from your triple-chin and read on. You big people disgust me! Why should I have to look at your fat asses when I'm trying to dine in my pleasant smoke-free environment. If my visual rights are not enough for you let's take another tact. What are you doing to our health care system? I learned this strategy from the anti-smokers and I feel your lard asses are a drain on our countries financial well-being. How about that? Obesity increases the risk of many diseases and health conditions, including the following:
  • Hypertension
  • Dyslipidemia (for example, high total cholesterol or high levels of triglycerides)
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Coronary heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Gallbladder disease
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Sleep apnea and respiratory problems
  • Some cancers (endometrial, breast, and colon) - oops, there's that cancer word again!
Why should I have to pay higher medical premiums simply because some excessive people can't control themselves? According to a study of national costs attributed to both overweight (BMI 25–29.9) and obesity (BMI greater than 30), medical expenses accounted for 9.1 percent of total U.S. medical expenditures in 1998 and may have reached as high as $78.5 billion ($92.6 billion in 2002 dollars) (Finkelstein, Fiebelkorn, and Wang, 2003). Granted this is on older study and I'm quite certain current estimates would be much higher. You getting the picture yet? Have I made my point?

You gays who feel you need equal rights - look out! I think you are a major cause of aides. Now that can't be good for our health care system, either. What a financial drain. Why am I paying financially for your right to be a freak? And your hate crime crap! You are trying to get more rights than everyone not equal rights. Oh no, here comes a law suit, another financial drain on our country. We better eliminate the courts!

Remember, I have my rights, too! Whatever your passion it will one day be in my, or somebody's, sights! And never, never forget - I'm gunning for your cats and dogs! By the way, what does your dog weigh? Just wondering.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

If you like photography and you like humor, as I do, you must check out What The Duck. This guy has an amazing site where he showcases his comic phenomena. It has become an outrageous hit and he has even began to merchandise items based on his cartoon creation. The artist's name is Aaron Johnson and he is quit a talent. One neat section of his site ecourages others to send in their What The Duck tributes. It's a classy setup and everyone with the knack should give it a try.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Worlds Largest Non-Military Lens

The Zeiss Apo Sonnar T* was designed by Carl Zeiss to be the world's largest nonmilitary camera lens. The 1,700mm lens weighs more than 550 pounds, is larger than a refrigerator, and gives a medium-format camera a telephoto factor of almost 29X. Don't expect to actually see it in the wild anytime soon, though; the Apo Sonnar T* is a special project from Carl Zeiss and costs as much as a small house.

Never before has the world of photography seen such a lens. The ZEISS Apo Sonnar T* 4/1700 was developed by Carl Zeiss for a customer with very high demands and a special interest in long distance wildlife photography. To achieve the highest possible image quality, the customer decided on the Hasselblad 203FE 6x6cm medium format camera and ZEISS lenses as the best combination for his special needs.

At a focal length of 1700mm and a speed of f/4, this project even challenged the manufacture of the optical glass. The delicate, special glass types required for this unique design had never been cast before in such huge dimensions. Some of the resulting lens blanks weighed more than 25 kg (55 lbs.) and were valued more than a luxury sedan! Turning these blanks into the finished lens elements added even more to their value.

The design of the ZEISS Apo Sonnar T* 4/1700 required new lens assembly techniques and quality assurance methods never before applied in photo lens production – even by Carl Zeiss’ normally high standards. The finished lens weighs a staggering 256 kg (564 lbs.), placing unique demands on the focusing mechanisms. To address this issue, Carl Zeiss developed a totally new way of operating a telephoto lens, including servo controlled aiming and focusing systems like those used in large telescopes and similar instruments for astronomical scientists.

Drawing from its expertise in developing and producing satellite and space optics, as well as ultra-high resolution microlithography lenses for semiconductor fabrication, Carl Zeiss was happy to accept this challenge.

The resulting Carl Zeiss Apo Sonnar T* 4/1700 lens consists of 15 optical elements in 13 groups. It is the largest telephoto lens ever produced for civilian photographic purposes and a testament to the precision design and manufacturing capabilities at Carl Zeiss.

Photo: Apo Sonnar T* 4/1700: the largest tele lens for non-military applications across the globe.

One must wonder what the military is using?

For those who are interested, you will probably need to fabricate some kind of adapter to mount this animal to your cell phone. Good luck.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Tamron 18-250mm Lens

The Tamron 18-250mm f3.5-6.3 Di II Macro is currently the lens with the largest zoom rate to date. It has a zoom ratio of 13.9 and it's effective equivilent for an APS-C camera (for which it is specifically designed) would be 27-375mm. It has a suggested street price of $499.

It is compact and light weighing only 15.2 ozs. It has a filter size of 62mm. It is available in the Canon AF, Nikon AF-D, Pentax AF, Samsung AF, Sony/Maxxum AF-D mounts.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Shed Project Is Coming Along

This photo was taken Tuesday and was meant to show I was nearly completed with the siding of the shed.

I, actually, finished the siding job about an hour later. I still have to paint around the overhead door and place the final trim there. Then the siding will be truly complete. After that is done, I plan on painting the foundation blocks white and I still have to hang the ladder racks on the north side. The exterior will then be complete with the exception of lights and outlets which I will install once I run the electrical.

It should be noted that I had a lot of help on this project and I am simply placing the finishing touches on it.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Terrorism Is Being Stopped

Looks like we foiled some terrorists once again.

MOUNT LAUREL, N.J. - Six nationals of the former Yugoslavia were arrested early Tuesday on charges they plotted to attack the Fort Dix Army base and "kill as many soldiers as possible," federal authorities said.

The six were scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court in Camden later Tuesday to face charges of conspiracy to kill U.S. servicemen, said Michael Drewniak, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office in New Jersey. Five of them lived in Cherry Hill, he said.

A law enforcement official, speaking on condition of anonymity because documents in the case remain sealed, said the men were arrested as part of a joint federal and local investigation.

The officials said the attack was stopped in the planning stages.

By GEOFF MULVIHILL, Associated Press Writer

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Politic Correctness

In light of todays penchant for political correctness, I'ld like to do my part in everyone's education.

1 She is not a "BABE" or a "CHICK" - She is a "BREASTED AMERICAN."

2. She is not "EASY" - She is "HORIZONTALLY ACCESSIBLE."



5 She does not "NAG" you - She becomes "VERBALLY REPETITIVE."

6. She is not a "TWO-BIT HOOKER" - She is a "LOW COST PROVIDER."

7. He does not have a "BEER GUT" - He has developed a "LIQUID GRAIN STORAGE FACILITY."

8. He is not a "BAD DANCER" - He is "OVERLY CAUCASIAN."


10. He is not "BALDING" - He is in "FOLLICLE REGRESSION."

11. He does not act like a "TOTAL ASS" - He develops a case of RECTAL-CRANIAL INVERSION."

12. It's not his "CRACK" you see hanging out of his pants - It's "REAR CLEAVAGE."

More Government is Not the Answer

The push is on, again, since the Virginia Tech incident. Every new shooting is cause for the debate to resurface. Both sides have made their points, as they always have. For those that feel that stricter gun control is the answer just remember, Virginia Tech did have a gun control policy in effect at the time of the shooting.

“The university’s employees, students, and volunteers,
or any visitor or other third party

attending a sporting, entertainment, or educational event,
or visiting an academic or

administrative office building or residence hall,
are further prohibited from carrying,

maintaining, or storing a firearm or weapon
on any university facility, even if the owner

has a valid permit, when it is not required
by the individual’s job, or in accordance with

the relevant University Student Life Policies.”
source:- ttachmentG.pdf

Now I suggest that, the policy did nothing for the students at the university. Why do people feel that legislating law is a panacea for all their woes? This is a dangerous position to hold. What disturbs me more, in these cases, is that people always want the government to hold their hands and coddle them. More laws are not always the answer and more government is definitely not the answer. The government can not always be there for you. Of course, I've even heard people blaming Bush for the events at Virginia Tech. Wake up people! There are hundred of thousands of laws on the books and we still have crimes. We still have murders. We have shooting sprees in spite of the fact it is illegal. Imagine that. I can't even count how many speeders I saw on the Interstate yesterday. Hey, I thought speeding was illegal!

Before anyone gets angry and infers that I don't believe in laws and I'm advocating for anarchy, I'm not. I do believe in laws and I do believe in government. I'm simply suggesting that the government is not your babysitter and the government is not a catch-all solution for all of your problems. We live in an imperfect world and it will always be so. Sorry. Sure subjects should be debated, that is obviously necessary. At times, laws should occasionally and very carefully be crafted but, we have far too many rules and regulations now. Let's look for the underlying causes for problems instead. Or should we ban SUVs next time one of them (sic) goes on a killing spree. Oops, I hope I didn't stir up this debate again. And we've all heard it before but, it makes the most sense of all the catch phrases concerned with gun control - Guns don't kill people, people do.

Many of you will still say this is one of those times we need legislation. After all, there are lives at stake here and if we only ban guns we'll be alright. It doesn't work that way. I've seen the comparison, many times, to countries that legislate gun rights away from it's citizenry. It just doesn't work! I've read a lot on the web on how crazy Americans are for allowing guns. They state they don't have shootings in their countries. This is just plain wrong. If you check out Two Angry Brits: The gun ban isn't working, you will see yet another example of how banning guns has failed. Don't tell me that eliminating guns from law abiding citizens will stop homicides. People will always find the ways and means to kill other people. Cain and Abel didn't have handguns, as far as I know, yet the taking of another life was started right then and there. Laws or no laws, I don't see man abusing man ending any time soon, do you?

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Harry Reid You Got To Go

Harry Reid has got to go. We don't need any anti-Americans in office. The great blogger Sunni Kay says it all, way better than I could, on her site. Please check it out -

Rantings, Ramblings, and Other Miscellaneous Stuff: Harry Reid

Illegals - Don't Rally!

A collaboration of writers have penned a story for AP yesterday entitled, "Immigration Rallies Planned Nationwide". When I first started reading the article I was ok with it. I feel all citizens have the right to protest. Then I was reminded of last years demonstrations when reading, " . . . some illegal immigrants wore T-shirts saying "I'm illegal. So what?" This is what really bothers me. In my opinion these illegals have no right to protest. If legal immigrants want to demonstrate, or otherwise use the system, to fight on behalf of others, I am ok with this. Citizens have this right, illegals do not.
To be fair, the article states that, "many immigrants are now afraid to speak out in public." This is reportedly because of the raids on illegals in recent months. This is fine with me. Stay home illegals. Not that you're at a legal home! If you like America so well, let the American system work for you, don't debase her more than you have.