Monthly Archives: September 2002

Keep on truckin'

I know that most of you already know that picture in the entry below is a very old sketch… The current idea is a little bit meaner still (crude drawing here — I will freely admit that it's unashamedly inspired by the Rotrax but much bigger). I talked to Howard today and confirmed that the 2.5 ton Rockwell toploaders are mine… So… If anyone wants to buy a reverse cut Dana 44 or a Ford 9″ (that's what's in it right now). The 44″ Boggers are already sold, but I'm in the market for a set of Terra 48″ tires if anyone knows where I can find some used.

Oh, and Rachel and I will be in Toronto tomorrow on some “top secret plans” (so, Jon, we can give you a ride if you don't have plans for tomorrow night already).


So I just got back from Belleville. Do I ever dislike that city and its mindset… Although at least I got to bump into Ryan and Corrie and the baby so that was nice. I got the registration stickers I needed, and ordered two custom plates. I picked up 1X4X9 for my trike (BME was already taken, and BMEZINE was too long for a small motorcycle plate), and I picked up PROGRAMR for my new and still unbuilt mega-truck (pictured below).

When I got back Rob and Rachel were out, so I drove the ATV to the end of Rob's farm to check it out, and then when I got back I drove my truck truck down his road a ways — Lost Channel, a little creek full of rocks is really pretty. I'll try and take a picture soon but I don't have a camera hooked up.

I'm going through waves of both euphoria and deep depression since getting here. I think it's because I'm starting to come to the same realization that my parents came to when they did exactly what I'm doing (giving up their careers in the city — at that point my father was the guy responsible for setting up medicare in BC, and my mother was the host of the business show Venture — to move their family to what they saw as a better environment)… That you can't have both.

Hence my new quote — “All the interesting streets are one-way.”

So maybe I have to decide whether I want to be a country person or whether I want to be a tech person (which includes doing IAM and BME). Both make me very happy. Giving up either clearly upsets me greatly… Maybe I should make one of those lengthy “pro/con” lists…

Life on Venus!

According the New Scientist, here's the argument:

  • Venus was once much cooler, and probably had water oceans, allowing microbes to form in a more hospitable environment than it has now.
  • Higher in the atmosphere of Venus there is water, and the temperature drops to about 70C, certainly a decent temperature for life.
  • Even though solar radiation and lightning should create a lot of carbon monoxide, it's not there. It appears that something is consuming it.
  • Hydrogen sulphide and sulphur dioxide both exist — they should be reacting, and are never found together unless something is producing them.
  • The “unambiguous indicator of biological activity” is plenty of carbonyl sulphide. As far as we know, this gas can only be produced by organic processes (ie. microbes).
  • There are strange dark patches in the atmosphere on UV images, implying UV absorbing microbes.

So let's go to Venus and find out! The European Space Agency is sending a mission in 2005, and the Swedes are planning on actually retrieving atmospheric samples in 2010. Too bad the US is spending all their money on war, it would be nice if NASA got involved.

After all, the oil age is almost over… Either we wreck ourselves, or humanity is about to enter the extraterrestrial age (both in that we humans become extraterrestrials and in that we discover hard proof of at least primitive life on other planets).

I don't know, I flip back and forth — are we better off pursuing an agrarian lifestyle (and being eventually killed off as a race when the asteroid hits — and it will hit), or do we commit ourselves to being children of the universe and focusing on fixing the mistakes we've made on this planet and then spreading our seed throughout the galaxy a la Star Trek?

Over the next few months I have to answer that question, since I'm reaching that point in life where my general living decisions affect me for longer and longer periods!

PS. All that said, New Scientist is not a peer reviewed journal and does from time to time publish speculative articles, so I'll be very interested what the reaction of people far more educated than me on this than me is…


Today I have to go to the big city of Belleville (oooh, 60,000 people) to renew my registration on a couple vehicles — I have to admit there's a part of me that is hoping they refuse to accept my insurance information (it's just the number written down, not an official slip) and I am forced to drive to Toronto to get it (where I will stuff myself with good food and revel in the stench of Chinatown).

Well, I'm off shortly to do that, and then it's to work on the scrapbook.

Ron. Paul, the 14th district representative from Texas (and a renegade Republican) outlines his convincing case that a $200 billion war will have devastating effects on the US economy. Of course, the Pentagon wants even more money, now to set up guerrilla forces in Iraq. Do you know why? Because the “real” rebel forces in Iraq want nothing to do with the Americans, so they now have to find a bunch of jokers that couldn't make the cut as real guerrillas and try and turn them into US puppet guerrillas. Hmmm… I think we've seen how that plan of attack works already, haven't we?

Of course the Russians aren't thrilled that the Americans are trying to take over the world's second largest oil reserve (I like how these articles leave out that Canada has more oil in the tar sands than all of the Middle East, that's good, let's keep flying under the radar), but then at the same time, Bush has told him that he might get a piece of that pie if he backs the attack — plus the US will support his own attacks on Chechnya and Georgia, so he's not sure what to do.

You guys rock!

Close to $900 was raised for Saira's show last night. Thank you to everyone who helped out, you really supported something worthwhile.

I'm going to try something different today; quotes.

From Manifesto for world dictatorship:

Now we know. The Americans have spelt it out in black and white. There will be a world government, but not one even pretending to be comprised of representatives of its nation states through the United Nations. The United States will rule, and not according to painstakingly developed international law and norms, but by what is in its interests.

In declaring itself dictator of the world, The United States will have no accountability to non-United States citizens. It will bomb who it likes when it likes, and change regimes when and as it sees fit, it will not be subject to investigations for war crimes, for torture, or for breaches of fundamental human rights.

OK, forget quotes. This article misses one important point in my opinion. It's the not the US's actions, and the US people certainly have not made these decisions (it's therefore doubly unfortunate that it is they that will trade their blood for cash in the pockets of their rulers). The US was long since defeated in a silent war between liberty and commerce. Commerce won. As such, the defense lobby, the oil lobby, the Israeli lobby, and so on keep setting the rules, no matter what is right for the people.

Hell, did you know that even though you can be prosecuted a la John Walker Lindh and/or lose your citizenship for contributing to a foreign army, that there is of course one major exception: Israel. Even though the Israeli army is guilty of a significant atrocities and warn crimes and has a clear racist agenda, not only is it allowed to support them, contributions to the Israeli Defense Fund are a tax-deductible contribution under US tax laws. (Thanks to for this tidbit.)

For those that don't know, the IDF is a Zionist organization that essentially fights for the exile and/or extermination of the Palestinian and Christian people from the region. You can mask it in all the religious pride you want but the fact is that it is a fundamentally immoral group by any objective standards.

Finally, watch out for oil prices… Sheikh Yamani, OPEC head in the 70's, has said that crude oil could actually triple — to $100 a barrel — if war plans continue. I can't say I'm convinced it would go that high, but hey, if it does, and you have an interest in Texas Tea like most of the politicians pushing for this war, you're going to become very very wealthy.

PS. The first link was a joke. I am not doing DMT today!