chatter.chaboud.com

1/28/2005

You didn’t get the memo?

Filed under: — site admin @ 4:09 pm

United States Vice-President (read: puppet-master) Dick Cheney’s appearance at the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz was marred by his chosen dress, which, according to observers, resembles that of someone either too young or too old to know better.


The reader is left to judge…

The plate mail gauntlet industry’s revival…

Filed under: — site admin @ 1:52 pm

Hot on the heels of last-month’s report of Servette midfielder Paulo Diogo’s ring-finger severing goal celebration (which somehow managed to net him a yellow card) comes the settlement of a case in which Shineece Cudjoe’s infant fingers were severed by the lid of an incubator mistakenly closed on her hand at the Royal London Hospital. Amazingly, Shineece’s mother, Doris Obeng, settled for a scant £30,000, which, for a life-altering case of gross malpractice, seems like a deal…

Cue the conspiracy theories…

Filed under: — site admin @ 1:20 pm

Undoubtedly fuel for conspiracy theories regarding recent tsunamic activity, the USS San Francisco, a nuclear attack submarine, has been stationed in dry dock in Guam after “colliding with an undersea mountain.”

One would hope that the current governmental situation in the United States would be conspiracy enough…

1/24/2005

Simple measures for more deadly weaponry made interesting through obfuscating terminology…

Filed under: — site admin @ 3:21 pm

This terribly uninformed article touts the nanotechnological interests of the United States Department of Defense in reference to “superthermites,” otherwise known as Metastable Intermolecular Composite, or MIC, materials, used in new incendiary bombs.

To clear up a few points before the reader begins to believe that the US DoD has begun work on bombs that drop incendiary nanites on crowds of unsuspecting would-be opposition voters, a thermite reaction is a reaction in which aluminum is oxidized by an oxide of another metal. The most commonly used thermite reaction is with iron oxide, and can produce temperatures in excess of 3000°C (over 5400°F). The formula for this reaction is written as follows:

Fe2O3 + 2Al → Al2O3 + 2Fe

These reactions were originally used for railway repairs, as a small amount of powder could be placed accurately and used for welding in-place. As this reaction carries its own oxygen, it does not need to be performed in open air. The reader is encouraged to try this reaction at home, possibly above stores of fuel, stacks of paper, or the hood of a car.

Further examination of the materials in question shows that, while producing quicker reactions than similar thermitic reactions, “superthermites” are merely thermitic powders with very small particle sizes, on the order of eight nanometers. As with any powder-based chemical reaction, smaller particle sizes lead to greater surface area and, thus, greater reaction rates. The reader is encouraged to conduct the following experiment:

For this at-home experiment, you will need two packets of powdered creamer and one cigarette lighter. Conduct this experiment as far from parental supervision and telephones as is possible. Boy Scout trips and school-yards are perfect.

  1. Pour one packet of powdered creamer out onto a table, pack it tightly, and attempt to light it with the lighter. This should prove relatively difficult.
  2. Open the other packet and hold it in one hand while lighting the lighter in the other.
  3. Throw the powder straight up into the air while holding onto the packet. It helps to have cupped the packet to allow the powder to easily exit.
  4. Hold the lighter to the bottom of the cloud of creamer.

If conducted properly, you should see the airborn creamer burn a bright orange.

For those concerned with factual accuracy, MOAB stands for “Massive Ordinance Air Burst,” rather than “mother of all bombs.”

What one can take away from the linked article, other than the need for John Gartner, the author, to spend more than three minutes fact-checking future articles, is that the development of weapons chemically similar to those used by the Nazis in World War II is being subsidized by the United States Department of Defense. It would be more fair to suspect that the US DoD has begun work on bombs that drop incendiary powders on crowds of unsuspecting would-be opposition voters.

The moral implications of this work are left as an excercise for the reader…

1/21/2005

Roll up your sleeves and sue…

Filed under: — site admin @ 5:10 pm

Nothing is particularly exceptional about the story of Ron, Fazila, and Antonia Verni of Newark, New Jersey, who’s car was struck by a truck driven by the then absurdly intoxicated Daniel Lanzaro, a man having recently attended a New York Giant’s football game, paralyzing the then two-year-old Antonia. Of only minor note is the sum awarded to the family, a lottery-win-worthy $135 million.

What is exceptional about the story of the Vernis is that the jury ordered that $105 million be paid, not by Lanzaro, who was ordered to pay $30 million, not by the beer vendor, who exceeded by four beers company policy limiting sales to two beers to one person at any given time for a paltry $10 tip, but by Aramark, for fostering an atmosphere in which intoxicated patrons were served.

I think I left my personal responsibility in my other pants…

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