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Everything posted by DamnSaxon

  1. I thought the right they had was "to bear arms and form a militia". The USA has a cosiderable militia which seems not to need to call on armed citizens for assistance, so there really is no need at all for every citizen to own a gun. I'm with McDilly-Willy. How many more of these "incidents" do they need to make them wake up? But then, we all know how likely they are to listen to advice from this side of the pond ...
  2. I say, introduce the bear to the Suicidal Bunny in the Random Images thread ...
  3. Well, there's not much happening here, just me sitting here typing stuff into Shetlink ... Going down the library later though, that'll be exciting ...
  4. Exactly. And in the British Isles, taking an average figure, it varies smoothly between about 8am in winter and 4am in summer, sunset varying between about 4pm (winter) and 8pm (summer). Exactly. Not changing the clocks reduced the casualty rate. Not setting them wrong during summer (or winter) but not changing them. The increase in road deaths in autumn arises because a population which has been driving home at, say, 4:30pm during the summer (and pretending it's 5:30) suddenly starts driving home at 5:30, when it's noticeably darker. If people just worked 8am til 4pm all year round - as they do during summer, pretending it's "9am til 5pm", ALL the alleged benefits of "year round BST" would accrue - plus, the country's clocks would be reading the right time for these islands. Perhaps one of the minority who voted in favour of BST would care to tell us why they prefer their clocks reading Italian time?
  5. Although I hail from the unfashionable side of Hadrian's Wall, I find the faffing about with clocks twice yearly a complete pain, with no obvious benefit. My own clocks remain on GMT all the year round, on the grounds that the time in Britain is GMT, whatever the government say. Strangely, I find that I experience precisely the same amount of daylight as those who do go through this idiot dance. The only practical effect is that I have to remind myself when I go out the door that they're all mad, and are pretending it's an hour later than it is. We're always told how summer time is "unpopular" north of the border. Shetland is about as far north of the border as you can get and still be in the UK ... is this right? Do Shetlanders regard BST with the same sort of irritation as me? (Other Scottish opinions also welcome, of course)
  6. Buck House has to be the one to aim for Is lese majeste still a capital offence?
  7. Yes, it's funny how people who want to "share" their religion with you (= foist it upon you) are put off if you try and "share" yours with them (you don't even need to worship the devil) If you have a good memory, you can quote them some of the weirder bits of the Bible and make them uncomfortable ... This is a fine example, none the worse for being a few years old ... "Why Can't I Own a Canadian?" (October 2002) Dr. Laura Schlessinger is a radio personality who dispenses advice to people who call in to her radio show. Recently, she said that, as an observant Orthodox Jew, homosexuality is an abomination according to Leviticus 18:22 and cannot be condoned under any circumstance. The following is an open letter to Dr. Laura penned by a east coast resident, which was posted on the Internet. It's funny, as well as informative: Dear Dr. Laura: Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God's Law. I have learned a great deal from your show, and try to share that knowledge with as many people as I can. When someone tries to defend the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind them that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination. End of debate. I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some of the other specific laws and how to follow them: When I burn a bull on the altar as a sacrifice, I know it creates a pleasing odor for the Lord - Lev.1:9. The problem is my neighbors. They claim the odor is not pleasing to them. Should I smite them? I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair price for her? I know that I am allowed no contact with a woman while she is in her period of menstrual uncleanliness - Lev.15:19- 24. The problem is, how do I tell? I have tried asking, but most women take offense. Lev. 25:44 states that I may indeed possess slaves, both male and female, provided they are purchased from neighboring nations. A friend of mine claims that this applies to Mexicans, but not Canadians. Can you clarify? Why can't I own Canadians? I have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself? A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an abomination - Lev. 11:10, it is a lesser abomination than homosexuality. I don't agree. Can you settle this? Lev. 21:20 states that I may not approach the altar of God if I have a defect in my sight. I have to admit that I wear reading glasses. Does my vision have to be 20/20, or is there some wiggle room here? Most of my male friends get their hair trimmed, including the hair around their temples, even though this is expressly forbidden by Lev. 19:27. How should they die? I know from Lev. 11:6-8 that touching the skin of a dead pig makes me unclean, but may I still play football if I wear gloves? My uncle has a farm. He violates Lev. 19:19 by planting two different crops in the same field, as does his wife by wearing garments made of two different kinds of thread (cotton/polyester blend). He also tends to curse and blaspheme a lot. Is it really necessary that we go to all the trouble of getting the whole town together to stone them? - Lev.24:10-16. Couldn't we just burn them to death at a private family affair like we do with people who sleep with their in-laws? (Lev. 20:14) I know you have studied these things extensively, so I am confident you can help. Thank you again for reminding us that God's word is eternal and unchanging. Your devoted fan, Jim And if that doesn't get rid of them ... well, yeah, "the standard F O works quite well"
  8. May your wallpaper remain unblemished!
  9. DamnSaxon


    Yes, the Bob Woolmer business is very worrying. Cricket used to be a civilised game, not at all the sort of thing people would strangle you over. I asked above why the game's not more popular in Scotland. Well. To lose against Australia is nothing. Everyone does that. To lose against South Africa is no great disgrace. They were probably paid to win it (remember Hansie Cronje?) But to lose against the Netherlands (or Ned, as the BBC scoreboard calls them)? Oh, dear, oh, dear. I think my question is answered. Ireland are surprising us all though, which is nice to see. The "minnows" can still win on a good day.
  10. When I was at school, a master with a taste for horrible puns put me in the "grossly intelligent" category (ie 144 and up). This makes me intelligent enough to agree with Fjool's observation that the tests are very culturally based and not worth that much. If you were a member of one of the tribes Ray Mears likes visiting, you'd be rated an idiot if you couldn't survive in the wilderness / jungle, and there probably aren't many Mensa members who'd pass muster there. All isn't lost if you're not Mensa material, though (the "brightest" 2%). If you're a member of the "stupidest 98%", there's always Densa. Wikipedia has an article, and it puts the whole IQ business into perspective.
  11. Still more info! - It looks as though Shetland is more aware than most of the UK of its radio enthusiasts. I can see that I shall have a few contacts if & when I make it to the islands. I like the Shetlopedia article - funny how everyone seems to mention King Hussein. I heard him once, years ago, almost inaudible compared to the thousands of stations calling him - the price of fame! He was very down to earth about it, though - just gave his name as Hussein and got on with the contact. I'm surprised more British amateurs don't mention Brian Rix, another of us. I looked for GM4YEL, but only found a few mentions in lists. The best thing I've found by asking the question, though, is that (hooray) amateur radio appears to be alive and well in the Northern Isles: if Shetlopedia's figure of about 30 is right, that's a higher percentage than down here. Funny, though. One of the classic ways of getting on the air involves slinging the end of your aerial over a tree ... Thanks and 73 to everyone, de G4ANA
  12. "When more is not enough" ... check this one out (but watch out for the side effects): http://havidol.com/
  13. Well, thanks all for the info - at least the hobby's still at least partly there! Thanks Para Handy - I had found the club from Colin's earlier comment, at least they still exist, unlike the Nottingham club. I found one or two bits on their website about Andrew Halcrow ... expeditions seem to use amateur frequencies quite a lot, mostly because if you take a ham along you've got someone who's almost guaranteed to be able to communicate. (If it's a big enough expedition, you'll get the Japanese rig makers giving you the gear, too!) Interesting to hear about G4FAJ, might look him out and see what he has to say. Surely more wind = less kite needed?! But mostly I just want to be able to hear noise other than the vast amount of man-made interference around the city when I turn on the receiver - here I can't even hear if there's a station calling me Breeksy - yes, by all means ask your dad, I'm in for as much information as I can get. Not sure whether I ought to join in the L.A.R.C. forums, though, I'd feel a bit out of place as the only G among all those GM's! But all interesting stuff. Maybe I should try and get on lower frequencies to try to work Shetland, as I say my problem is noise and planning restrictions but it's all a challenge. Thanks everyone for your help
  14. I've been feeling that way increasingly the last few years. For Heaven's sake, this family seem to have done everything as right as you could ask and STILL they get treated like this. Bl**dy disgusting. Sounds like my "bathwater" theory of society ... the scum floats to the top.
  15. Is that "Open ID"? It sounds like a great idea, although I'm not sure how it works I think the trouble with any system that tries to keep authorisations somewhere is that no matter how well you try to protect it or encrypt it there are going to be thousands of writers of Trojans, worms etc. working out how to steal identities, passwords etc. for nefarious purposes. I don't keep ANY passwords in this box, I put them in myself every time. Bits of half-legible paper lying around in obscure places in my flat have to be a lot more secure than a file some Russian hacker is trying to nick. Okay it's low tech, but it works ... if it ain't where the beggars are looking, they're not going to find it. Flash intro pages. Grrrrr Flash practically anything, grrrr! Thank you Firefox for the Flash Blocker!
  16. Yeah, biofuels sound great in theory, but as pointed out they take up a LOT of land which could be producing food. Given the apparent capability of the human race for over-consuming everything in sight, we could well end up being able to drive but not to eat, not a very clever solution. Also I've been reading recently how in Brazil, often held up as a shining example of pioneering biofuel use, they're now cutting down virgin forest to plant fuel crops, just like they used to for the cattle ranches in recent years. Not quite so shining an example. A start might be to prohibit (not just tax) some of the entirely unnecessary fuel use that goes on at the moment - like buying "locally produced" food at a supermarket which has been transported several hundred miles to their central warehouse, then several hundred miles back again. Or the lorryloads of beef cattle sent to graze their last few weeks in Scotland just so the supermarket can charge a premium for "Scots" beef. Clearing that sort of wasteful traffic might unclog some of the roads a bit, too, so that people with more efficient vehicles can actually keep them moving & not sit in traffic jams. Fred Flintstone's car seemed to be very fuel efficient
  17. Thanks, Colin. Yes, I've looked on the net (now I know what I'm looking for!) and it seems the club now meets monthly at the Westings Inn (sounds like a traditional sort of place for amateurs to meet!). My main trouble trying to talk to Shetland amateurs from here is that I'm subject to Conservation Area restrictions - couldn't put up much of an aerial even if I had more than a yard to put it in. Perhaps I'll try to get a "magloop" going indoors and settle for setting off the fire alarms they've just installed here At least the club still seems to have a few members. The Nott'm club seems only to be present on the net, unless you're into "fox hunting" in the summer, and most of the activity I hear is just mobiles nattering on the repeater - okay as far as it goes but I prefer a bit more of a challenge. If you dig that Yaesu out, post me a note on what the noise level's like. It's S9 here most days, whatever frequency you try. Awful. Being interested in low power, I stand no chance. 73 & thanks for the info.
  18. Hmm ... SIBC keeping up the same high standards as most local radio then Well thanks (I suppose) Claudias, that's more the thing I had in mind, and more like the activity down here than I'd have hoped. I guess the good bit is that if I do make it to Shetland I'll have no problem with strong local signals. Main problem here is noise from the sea of electrical and electronic stuff in your modern city - 'strength nine' on the meter and you can only hear the strongest European signals. Anyone sees a strange Englishman on a clifftop, flying a kite and apparently talking to himself, be kind to him. You'll know I've finally arrived ... unless it's somebody from the City who's trying to get his mobile working ... Actually, I reckon the whole idea of hobbies seems to be disappearing ... when I was a wee wee nipper, most blokes seemed to do something practical in their spare time, whether a 'shack' full of radio or a lathe in the shed or whatever. Nearly everybody now seems just to stare at a screen most of the time ... er ...
  19. As one of those oddballs who enjoys playing with the ionosphere, I'm attracted to Shetland partly by the prospect of getting away from the horrible miasma of interference in my present city QTH. (QTH = Location, for non-amateurs!) Are there any fellow licensees in Shetlink circles who can confirm that the bands are quieter within Shetland than without? - or who can thoroughly depress me with tales of oil-industry "noises off" etc.? If so, note that this is my post number 73 ... another note for the unlicensed - we use '73' at the end of a contact, it means "Best Wishes" ... 73 es hpe hr fm u
  20. Maybe you just get a tasteful ornamental certificate to grace the wall of your home ... 666 = The Number of the Beast 999 = The Number of the Australian Beast 67266 = The Number of Walt Disney's 101 Beasts 0.666 = The Number of the Millibeast ... and many more of that ilk
  21. If you haven't, read 'A Canticle for Leibowitz', by Walter M. Miller, set in just such a place. But, alas, you're probably right. We humans are very good at fighting over ... well, anything or nothing.
  22. DamnSaxon


    Because it's dull? Dull? Come on, man, cricket in its most highly developed form can keep one match going for five days! That's not dull, that's a way of life! Take your point about the quaffing, though. Quaff enough and you won't notice the five days passing by ...
  23. That's quite an eyestraining video you found, DeMascus! One thing the prof didn't mention but I keep seeing references to: "Web 2.0 is making it ever easier for the unprincipled to download bots and trojans and spyware into your Windows box". - Since Micro$oft can't be bothered with security, perhaps we need a Web 2.1 to do it for us. I still like a plain page that loads instantly, rather than one that takes ages to load up flash graphics tricks which don't carry any information - like my fave science site above. Glad you like deviantart!
  24. Hi, Bluestone, nice to meet you. Yes, this is a helluva problem. The TV programme has already come in for some serious criticism (George Monbiot, predictably, in the Guardian yesterday, another article in the Independent today) for using fiddled or unscientific figures, but I think they did raise some valid points. For instance, the point that climate change has by now become a vested interest. If my research funding depended on finding it, I'd expect to find it - very much like those tobacco researchers. But I think the most important point they made was that the sun is far and away the largest influence on the climate as a whole. We know that the sun's energy output varies over its 11-year sunspot cycle, and that it has varied more than that over thousands of years to give us our ice ages and interglacial periods, long before we humans appeared to start fouling things up. On the other hand, there are the findings from ice core analysis that the CO2 levels in the atmosphere have been pretty much constant at 250 - 270 ppm for many millennia, but over the last few years have been increasing at a frightening rate - about 380 ppm at the moment, and rising at about 10 per decade (increasing). The increase doesn't sound like much, but if it helps tip the balance and cause either runaway warming or precipitate another ice age, it isn't going to be good news for us. I heard James Lovelock on the radio last year, pointing out that the earth would undoubtedly survive, but not necessarily humanity. Not a reassuring thought! I think that a great chunk of this problem is the number of us living on the planet. Only a century or so ago, the UK had about 10 million people, now we have 60 million. Likewise everywhere else. We are turning into an infestation, as we plunder the earth's resources without a thought for tomorrow - and then turn stuff into pollution (the poisonous heavy metals in the groundwater just as much as the CO2 in the atmosphere) - we are making our planet uninhabitable at an ever-increasing rate. I'm not an end-of-the-worlder, but the ancient Maya calendar comes to an end on Dec 23rd, 2012. (Google on 2012 to find some of the nut sites.) And, around 2011, we shall be at the next sunspot peak, which sun experts reckon is going to be a very big peak - even more solar energy pumping into our ecosystem. And a number of scientific researchers are finding that when the earth's climate changes it does NOT do it gradually, a couple of degrees over a century. It's a 'chaotic' system, which could snap us into an ice age or an oven age (for want of a better term) in a matter of two or three decades. It could very easily be that our pollution, plus a large solar peak, will trigger a massive change which we won't be able to prepare for. This stuff scares me stiff when I think about it. I use low-energy light bulbs throughout, but somehow I doubt it's going to make much difference. I think our children and grandchildren are going to curse us ... not that there will be many of them left. Maybe the Maya were right.
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