Understanding Pregnancy Basics Could Make Childbirth Safer : Shots – Health News : NPR: https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2019/02/18/693635055/scientific-duo-gets-back-to-basics-to-make-childbirth-safer

OLDER:

Standards Needed For Editing Of Human Germline : Shots – Health News : NPR: https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2018/12/13/675567314/gene-edited-babies-claim-is-wake-up-call-for-world-leading-scientists-say

Radiolab | Radiolab Presents: Gonads | WNYC Studios: https://www.wnycstudios.org/shows/radiolab/projects/radiolab-presents-gonads

A Baby Born With 3 Parents’ DNA Looks Healthy So Far : Shots – Health News : NPR: https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2017/04/08/523020895/a-baby-with-3-genetic-parents-seems-healthy-but-questions-remain

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Serenity Prayer – Wikipedia

Serenity Prayer – Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serenity_Prayer
God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.

Used to have this on a card, carried it in my wallet, gift from my mom, when I joined the army, my 6-year enlistment during the 90’s. Referred to it often.

Saying this one more and more lately. Along with various “most benevolent outcome”-type prayers.

—–

For some people, most people, the words “purpose” and “meaning” have exactly the same definitions.

I’ve found value and direction in the “degrees in between”.

Contemplating:

  • God
  • The Celestial Mechanics of Creation [Matter, Energy, Time, Space]
  • Life, Nature, and Evolution

Purpose of Life: rooted in the gentics od physical existence, the purpose is to survive and procreate. Nature’s systems of Evolution have found (and continue to find) successful algorithms to perpetuate Life, despite the harsh mechanisms of Creation.

Meaning of Life: That’s something each free-thinking/free-willed tries to defone for itself, with Nature-derived predispositions being a mix of “baselines”, “backstops”, “hurdles” and “tools”.

I’m a deeply flawed individual. Make more mistakes, I’m sure, than any other Human-Monkey I know. Very aware of that. Very aware of every failure.

Have to keep moving forward, though. Keep thinking, keep working. Can’t give in to “analysis paralysis”.

Feeling useless, more and more, at home and at work.

Life, Liberty, & the Pursuit of Happiness versus Safety & Security versus Purpose & Meaning. Never-Ending Battle. In the end, I’m dead anyway.

“You go in with nothing, you go out with nothing. What have you lost?”

When my Soul comes before God for Final Evaluation, when every Thought & Deed is examinded, what then? Salvation, Damnation, or Oblivion?

Matthew 5:5 – Wikipedia

Matthew 5:5 – Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matthew_5:5

“Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.”

Interesting to read the interpretations.

Especially fascinated by the possibilty of “meek” referring to either “the powerless” or to “wielding power without harshness”. [Hinges on how to interpret the original greek word that was used in the scriptures.]

“With great power comes great responsibility”?

Even though “power corrupts”?

Those seeking power often do so ruthlessly, seeking “Greatness”. Whatever good intentions they have are dirtied, undercut by the evils small and large they do, or get others to do for them, either on thier way to getting power, or when they are exercising what power they’ve gained.

IMO, anyway.

Worth a re-listen:

Faith in Fantasy [& Sci-Fi][Excellent “round table” involving discussion of religion, morality, and ethics and visions of Humanity in sci-fi and fantasy fiction, discussed by a Christian Pastor, Jewish Rabbi, and a Muslim Imam. : https://www.imaginaryworldspodcast.org/faith-in-fantasy.html

How Can This Possibly Be True? (Ep. 236) [The “I, Pencil” episode. Global supply chains, Globalism, Capitalism.] – Freakonomics Freakonomics: http://freakonomics.com/podcast/i-pencil/

Two (Totally Opposite) Ways to Save the Planet (Ep. 346) [The “Environmental-Conservationist “Prophets” versus the Techno-Optimist “Wizards” episode.] – Freakonomics Freakonomics: http://freakonomics.com/podcast/save-the-planet/

Is the Government More Entrepreneurial Than You Think? (Ep. 348) [The episode reminding us that government programs involving defense, energy/communication/transportation infrastructure, and funding scientific research/education have been hugely beneficial to the private sector and the public.] – Freakonomics Freakonomics: http://freakonomics.com/podcast/mariana-mazzucato/

Yes, the American Economy Is in a Funk — But Not for the Reasons You Think (Ep. 240) [Good “thumbnails” covering the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd “Industrial Revolutions”, where we are now, where we might be headed.] – Freakonomics Freakonomics: http://freakonomics.com/podcast/american-growth/

Why Is This Man Running for President? (Ep. 362) [Andrew Yang: a private sector entrepreneur I’d actually vote for if he ran for President.] – Freakonomics Freakonomics: http://freakonomics.com/podcast/andrew-yang/

In Praise of Maintenance (Ep. 263 Rebroadcast) – Freakonomics Freakonomics: http://freakonomics.com/podcast/in-praise-of-maintenance-rebroadcast/

Thinking Is Expensive. Who’s Supposed to Pay for It? (Ep. 307) – Freakonomics Freakonomics: http://freakonomics.com/podcast/thinking-expensive-who-pay/

———-

Green New Deal FINAL [a resolution, general guide] – Document Viewer : NPR: https://apps.npr.org/documents/document.html?id=5729033-Green-New-Deal-FINAL

Despite Few Details And Much Doubt, The Green New Deal Generates Enthusiasm : NPR: https://www.npr.org/2019/02/08/692508990/despite-few-details-and-much-doubt-the-green-new-deal-generates-enthusiasm

U.N. Climate Report Offers Grim New Forecast : NPR: https://www.npr.org/2018/10/08/655360909/grim-forecast-from-u-n-on-global-climate-change

Midwest Farmers Will Bear The Brunt Of Climate Change, Federal Report Says | Here & Now: https://www.wbur.org/hereandnow/2018/11/28/climate-change-midwest-farmers

As Rates Rise, Cleveland Water And Sewer Grapples With Affordability | News | ideastream: https://www.ideastream.org/news/as-rates-rise-cleveland-water-and-sewer-grapples-with-affordability

CRISPR And Human Embryo Experiments Underway In The U.S. : Shots – Health News : NPR

CRISPR And Human Embryo Experiments Underway In The U.S. : Shots – Health News : NPR: https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2019/02/01/689623550/new-u-s-experiments-aim-to-create-gene-edited-human-embryos

Block-Chain Markets & Environmental Solutions (??)

A Small Plastic Package Is A Big Culprit Of The Waste Filling Oceans : NPR: https://www.npr.org/2019/01/15/685252092/a-small-plastic-package-is-a-big-culprit-of-the-waste-filling-oceans

EXCERPT FROM THE ABOVE LINK:

So where did all this plastic come from? Well, let’s go back to the 1940s. …. Plastic for consumers was growing in popularity. Manufacturers raced to find ways to fashion it into things people would buy. Plastic was lightweight, inexpensive, flexible. …. But much of it could not be recycled, and people in the industry knew that. At the first National Conference on Packaging Waste held in San Francisco in 1969, some executives wondered, where is all this plastic going to end up? One marketing consultant said that wasn’t their problem. Difficulties with plastic waste, quote, “are not the responsibility of those who produce materials, fabricate packages or package goods” – unquote. Rather, he said, it’s the consumer’s responsibility. So manufacturers just urged people not to litter and kept pumping out new kinds of plastic with yet more uses.

…….

Personal blue-collar tax-paying voter opinions:

Was thinking about plastic waste. Was thinking about how amazing it is, modern technologies and manufacturing, how we can make all this.

Was thinking about how — in business thinking throughout Human History — “makers” and “job-creators” want to make and sell, and the responsibility of the waste or pollution produced is someone else’s problem. It has to be, in order to be profitable in the market.

Was thinking about some of the Freakonomics Radio episodes I like re-listening to.

The “environmentalist prophets versus the techno-wizards” is a favorite.

The recent one with Andrew Yang is another.

I don’t like BitCoin or other “crypto-currencies”, as they aren’t backed by the “full faith and credit” of We the People, or any People. Love the security possibilities of Block Chain, though.

And Andrew Yang’s twist of combining a crypto-currency with the “checks and balances”/power-sharing/”full faith and credit” of the goverment backing of a “time bank digital credit system”.

The Market ™ is usually only concerned with The Dollar and the profits it needs.

Human Civilization has more needs to fulfill, stuff the profit-seeking markets find no value in, but which need to be managed nonetheless.

Yang’s “time bank digital credits” tjing is one “currency system” that could help. Emphasis is on person-to-person, community-level needs.

Running parallel to that, maybe at the “state and national needs” level, another crypto-currency system could be set up? For companies and institutions? More robust than “simply” a carbon-credits system? One to set up a parallel economy to help not “simply” recycle, but to “unmake” that which was made, turning waste back into useable resources?

Worth thinking about? Worth experimenting with? Carefully?

We, the U.S. of A., pride ourselves on dynamic innovation. The States are supposedly Laboratories of Freedom and Innovation. Our Pioneering Spirit and sense of competition took us to the moon once.

Have we become so “conservative” that we can’t experiment anymore?

Seems like civilizations die, resting too comfortably on their laurels…..

Andrew Yang: Why Is This Man Running for President? (Ep. 362) – Freakonomics Freakonomics

Andrew Yang: Why Is This Man Running for President? (Ep. 362) – Freakonomics Freakonomics: http://freakonomics.com/podcast/andrew-yang/

At this point, I — a blue-collar tax-paying voter, a Moderate/Centrist/Neo-Progressive Republican — am willing to entertain certain “Democratic” ideas, from Andrew Yang’s ideas to these “Green New Deal” ideas.

We need to innovate our politics and socioeconomics. Same-old-same-old has us backsliding.

……

Did China Eat America’s Jobs? (Ep. 274) – Freakonomics Freakonomics: http://freakonomics.com/podcast/china-eat-americas-jobs/

[One of the episodes recommended for a ‘re-listen’.]

…….

What Are the Secrets of the German Economy — and Should We Steal Them? (Ep. 304) – Freakonomics Freakonomics: http://freakonomics.com/podcast/secrets-german-economy-steal/

[ 1. Definitely shows some of Germany economy’s weaknesses and potential pitfalls, and how too much “rigid structure” can squeeze out dynamism. 2. “Spatial Economics”? Cool]

……..

How Safe is Your Job? (Ep. 194 Rebroadcast) – Freakonomics Freakonomics: http://freakonomics.com/podcast/safe-job-rebroadcast/

Okay, so, the 2020 election cycle has started.
Trump is running on Security.

He wants a Great Wall to run along the U.S. border with Mexico, from Pacific Ocean shores to Gulf of Mexico shores, through the mountainous areas as well as through desert areas, through urban and rural areas.

Wall will stop flow of illegal migrants, from farm laborers to gangsters, I guess.
I assume he thinks it will stop the flow of illegal narcotics as well.
(Unlikely. Drug traffickers seem to relay heavily on physically concealing/disguising drugs and corrupting personnel to smuggle drugs into the country.)

U.S. taxpayers will be footing the bill for building the Great Wall.
Who owns the land the wall will be built on? How will they be compensated?
Who will design and build it?
Who will we be buying materials from?
Beyond costs to build, what are projections for 100 years of maintaining and repairing this bit of infrastructure?
How will that be funded?

Trump comes from the real estate and development sector.
How will he run the details of this project?

If he’s against raising taxes, especially on the rich, to pay for it, where will the money come from?
How much will be diverted from existing infrastructure and law-enforcement and defense budgets to do this?

We need detailed answers.
And to hear the questions and answers repeatedly, every time, for the next two years.

I don’t know if either “wing” of the mainstream media is up for that.

EDIT: I’ve got Google Maps and Google Earth up.
Looking at what I can of existing border wall/barrier.
Boggles my mind.

———-

Opinion: Migrant Girl’s Death Reveals A Need For More Interpreters Along The Border : NPR: https://www.npr.org/2019/01/03/681942831/opinion-migrant-girls-death-reveals-a-need-for-more-interpreters-along-the-borde

See, it seems to me we need a better network of roads and installations along the border, combination of military, law-enforcement, customs, correction/detention, scientific research and linguistic university annexes, medical services, and communication technologies.

16-Year-Old Set To Graduate From Kansas High School And Harvard University : NPR

16-Year-Old Set To Graduate From Kansas High School And Harvard University : NPR: https://www.npr.org/2018/12/28/680762928/16-year-old-set-to-graduate-from-kansas-high-school-and-harvard-university

Really cool story about a “Wiz-Kid”.

Kinda disappointed he wants to become a politician some day. But, maybe that’s just me. Hopefully, he becomes — or is — an adult of character, someone morally and ethically upright, humble and kind (as the song goes), not “just” highly intelligent.

Seems like we’ve got a lot of genuinely intelligent as well as “think they’re clever” types in positions of power/influence all around the world, including some ruthless overzealous types, and they’re so myopic and driven, they’re wrecking things.

We shall see.

“Technology Tree Yggdrasil”

Open Scientific Collaboration May Be Helping North Korea Cheat Nuclear Sanctions : NPR: https://www.npr.org/2018/12/19/675390104/open-scientific-collaboration-may-be-helping-north-korea-cheat-nuclear-sanctions

Neil DeGrasse Tyson’s ‘Accessory To War’ An Uncomfortable Wake-Up Call For Some : NPR: https://www.npr.org/2018/09/17/648697495/accessory-to-war-an-uncomfortable-wake-up-call-for-some

—–

We — Humanity, Human Civilization — managed to land another probe on Mars last month:

NASA Probe Lands Safely On Martian Surface : NPR: https://www.npr.org/2018/11/25/667480118/look-out-mars-here-comes-insight

…. it’s been such an amazing year for Humanity in the areas of exploration and discovery and learning beyond our little planet. Hopefully, leads to reflection about where we are now in other areas of Humanity’s and Civilization’s existence. Where we’ve been, where we are now, where we’re heading.

Science/Technology/Engineering/Mathematics.

History/Arts/Language.

Ethics/Morality/Character.

Ohio: I love my state.

Term-Limited, Out-Going Governor John Kasich has been trying to woo Elon Musk and Tesla to the state, hopefully to take over automotive plants GM plans to shutdown.

I’m all for it.

Ohio, the U.S. in general, and Tesla have to realize something, though: the infrastructure isn’t “there” yet for all-electric vehicles.

Tesla: IMO: for now, we need plug-in hybrid “crossover” SUVs and trucks. Probably for the next 20-30 years.

Need private industry to work with government here in the state on infrastructure. Including building codes. Not unrealistic to me that by a certain date, say, statewide housing regulations might require that all new-build homes with attached garages also have a standardize power outlet with plug-in hybrids in mind. As a suggestion.

Ohio wants to lead the way in self-driving vehicle tech. We are in competition with not only California in that, but also Michigan, Indiana, and Pennsylvania, IIRC.

But that’s a good thing. Kind of “California term” comes to mind: “cooperative competition” or “cooper-tition”.

Private industry and state governments need to collaborate on advancing all these research and manufacturing areas. Figure out how to keep innovation moving forward without bankrupting the public. Need to keep civilization rolling forward.

Trump and Taxes: The Art of the Dodge | Trump, Inc. | WNYC Studios: https://www.wnycstudios.org/story/trump-inc-trump-taxes-art-dodge

How Trump Really Got Rich – The New York Times: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/03/podcasts/the-daily/donald-trump-fred-trump-tax-money.html

Episode 868: Moneyland : Planet Money : NPR: https://www.npr.org/sections/money/2018/10/05/654769859/episode-868-moneyland

Shameful. Allegedly patriotic Conservative business people, taking government funding whenever they can, gaming the system to make sure they pay little-to-no taxes, aided and abetted by every elected Congressperson and Senator thru favorable legislation imaginabke, including de-funding of the IRS, underfunding the DOJ, and more.

If our democratic-republic dissolves, collapsing into a bunch of corrupt oligarchy fiefdoms, it’ll because of this cabal of thieves’ greed and short-sightedness.

“Take what you can, give nothing back!”

George H.W. Bush Dies: Former U.S. President Was 94 : NPR: https://www.npr.org/2018/11/30/423556608/former-president-george-h-w-bush-dies-at-94

George H.W. Bush’s Wartime Experience Shaped His Approach To Politics : The Two-Way : NPR: https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2018/12/01/169703080/george-h-w-bushs-wartime-experience-shaped-his-approach-to-politics

——

Rest In Peace, sir.

I graduated high school in 1988, that was also the first election I ever voted in. I voted for GHWB. Back then, I only knew he’d been Reagan’s VP and was a pilot during WWII. My respect for him, and I was and am just a lowly tax-paying voter, only grew the more I learned about him.

I’ve heard the charge that he was “elitist”, but have never bought it. He was successful, but good and honorable, tried to do the Right Thing for the right reasons, the right way, as straightforwardly and honest as possible.

I’m just a blue-collar shlub, but I could respect him.

I think his impact on the world has had a “long tail”, longer than most might think.

Godspeed, Bush 41.

EDIT (2018-12-02):

What We All Forget (If We Ever Knew) About The Political Career of Bush 41 : NPR: https://www.npr.org/2018/12/02/672719097/what-we-all-forget-if-we-ever-knew-about-the-political-career-of-bush-41

Should America Be Run by … Trader Joe’s? (Ep. 359) – Freakonomics Freakonomics: http://freakonomics.com/podcast/trader-joes/

Good listening.

Among other things, it’s got me thinking about “choice” in relation to the game of HeroClix….

“Choice architecture.” “Variety-seeking exercise.” “Decision Theory.” “Nudging.”

“Thoughts & Prayers” Aren’t Enough

‘This Is Going To Be Absolutely Heart-Wrenching’: The Thousand Oaks Shooting Victims : NPR: https://www.npr.org/2018/11/08/665909790/this-is-going-to-be-absolutely-heart-wrenching-the-thousand-oaks-shooting-victim

A Survivor Helps Other Survivors Process The Horrors Of The Las Vegas Mass Shooting : NPR: https://www.npr.org/2018/10/01/653399370/a-survivor-helps-other-survivors-process-the-horrors-of-the-las-vegas-mass-shoot