'The Jerry Grumman Show'

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Lost in Space?  All Things Unclear?   World Skeptics Day?

" ... successfully delivering national security satellites to orbit is an important part of SpaceX’s business. The launch, however, remains shrouded in mystery.  The top-secret satellite known only by a code name, “Zuma,” was a mystery from the start. Its classified mission was intentionally inscrutable, whether to detect missile launches, spy on adversaries or track ships at sea with a space radar. The satellite was so highly secretive that it was not publicly released which government agency — The National Reconnaissance Office? The CIA? — was responsible for it. During the launch on the evening of Jan. 7, SpaceX cut short its webcast so that it wouldn’t reveal details of where the satellite was going or what it looked like.

Now there’s another mystery:  "Northrop Grumman, the satellite’s manufacturer, said it could not comment on a classified mission. As members of Congress began requesting classified briefings about what, if anything, went wrong, Pentagon officials were also mum..."   After a bitter legal and lobbying battle, the Pentagon certified SpaceX’s Falcon 9 for the missions and now is relying on SpaceX to reliably fly its satellites to orbit.   Furthermore, NASA is counting on Elon Musk’s company to fly astronauts to the International Space Station, with test flights as early as this year.  U.S. Rep. John Garamendi (D-Calif.), who said he received a “preliminary briefing,” had two concerns about the possible loss of the satellite.  “One is the loss of the intelligence that would have been available,” he said. “The second concern is the reliability of the delivery systems. And that issue is being debated between the contractors.”

"Ballistic missile threat inbound to Hawaii. Seek immediate shelter. This is not a drill," read the message, ALL in capital letters."  


"The Honolulu Star also said emergency officials had sent the message by mistake, although it is not yet known how it happened." 

Zwinge & 'Woo Woo'

"No sirens were blaring. No guns were drawn. Nobody was screaming or shouting. But in the blink of an eye, the love of the Amazing Randi's life — the man he had shared a home with for two dozen years — vanished. "I was totally bewildered by it, and I'm in the business of bewildering people," he said. "I didn't know which way to turn. It was the hardest moment of my life. I've been dangled over Niagara Falls, but nothing compares to this — nothing."

"Randi decided in the early 1970s that his expertise in magic could be put to greater use than mere entertainment. He set forth to expose psychics, faith healers, anyone who made a profit using "supernatural" powers. A bit of a witch-hunt. He'd calibrated the telescope so that I could see Saturn with the rings. Then Saturn left the viewfinder, and I said, 'It moved.' Randi said, 'No, the Earth moved.'

"William Rodríguez was a former janitor at the North Tower of the World Trade Centre  during and was in the basement when AAF11 crashed into the building. After the attacks he received several awards for heroism for helping in the evacuation of many survivors. As a young man, Rodriguez worked under the stage name "Roudy" as an assistant to a magician.

"Miss Machon, 40, who now lives in Dusseldorf, Germany, with her new partner blamed the Government and the intelligence services for causing Mr Shayler's current condition,  Dalores Kane. Meanwhile, Mr Shayler spoke of his new life with eight other squatters with whom he moved into Hackhurst Farm in Abinger Hammer, near Dorking, Surrey at the end of June. (2009)"

An Honest Liar.

"A fresh vote could "kill off" the Remain campaign for a generation."  "If he actually believes that, I would say he was wrong," Mr Bolton told the BBC's Daily Politics. But he said Mr Farage had been making a "call to arms" to "mobilise the entire Leave campaign". Mr Farage said a second referendum would stop the "whinging and whining" of anti-Brexit campaigners."

"The future of troubled engineering company Carbillion is being discussed at high-level government meetings this weekend, the BBB understands. The firm is a key government contractor for projects including the HS2 high-speed rail scheme, schools into prisons.  The firm has a "matter of days" as it teeters on the edge of collapse, with £1.5bn of debt including a short person.   Chance Cable said the government must not bail out.  The struggling construction company, the second largest in the UK,  "force the shareholders and indeed the creditors, the big banks, to fake losses, and then the government can take responsibility.  Taking the contracts forward and making sure they are not delivered."

"One man shouted “No to the EU” and another displayed a US flag."

"One is the loss of the intelligence that would have been available,” “The second concern is the reliability of the delivery systems. And that issue is being debated between the contractors, SpaceX and the satellite manufacturer, Northrop.” While he said he did not know who was to blame, he indicated that the dispute might lead to litigation. “Those two companies are going to have a long and, I suspect, very expensive discussion."

The Pot Thickens.

"But believe it or not, October 13 is International Skeptics Day. Or is it? While there is not enough concrete evidence about how or when this annual “holiday” began, International Skeptics Day is also celebrated on January 13th and/or the first Friday in January."




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Henry Quick Pick

Rock  Shock Horror ...


A UK Politician has legitimate relationship with young woman :

"He warned supporters to expect media coverage of a "change in my relationship status" but denied a "clandestine affair"...

He urged UKIP supporters not to allow the relationship to distract him or the party from their "vital mission", promising a "significant ramping up" of political activity in the coming months."

"Since her release Manning has remained active on social media, and has continued to discuss issues such as government transparency, free speech and transgender rights.

It comes down to "seemingly small actions that indicate a person is emotionally or physically focused on someone outside their relationship".

I'm only *0, but I hope to use it to pursue a variety of passions, help my family and do some good for humanity," His lawyer said his client had "retired" from his job at a company that carried out employment background checks.

Using a "Quick Pick" option that selects the numbers randomly.

"If there is one thing I have learned thus far in my short time on this earth it is that those who maintain a positive mindset and stay true to themselves get rewarded,"

"I look forward to the future."



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Litte Red Corvette

"This is stone-cold crazy. After a week of crazy."

The White House, of course, defended their man as being more than capable enough to be on the council, pointing out his Navy service.

"It was not a demotion, White House officials said, but the reasons for the change were not clear. Perhaps, just by shaking up the old order, the appointment had done its job.

"I've got my hands back on my weapons," he said. "It's Bannon the Barbarian."

Bannon's backers cut their ties with him, he left the powerful right-wing media empire Breitbart, and the future of the man behind some of Trump's most headline-grabbing policies has been left up in the air.

Disorder was the new order in the White House. He and Trump were creating conflict and confusion.

Somewhere, somehow, Bannon the master string-puller will re-emerge - possibly in a different guise.

The puller of strings ...


Food shortages have led to many cases of severe malnutrition, and a UN report in November said some residents in 'insert your own' had been reduced to eating animal fodder and even rubbish.

Xanax has seen a sharp rise in popularity in the past year.


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The Spirit of Free Enterprise

"No one ever lost money doing business with the government: it was too stupid and had too much money. So went the old saying. Carillion has just proved it wrong. Britain’s second biggest construction company and state contractor has gone into liquidation.  Accountants must reallocate to other firms the billions of pounds in contracts for prisons, schools, hospitals, railways and military bases. It must somehow underpin these contracts, which will cost money. Fiasco or not, the nation’s business must go on...  "


"The company’s demise is attributable to favouritism, cost escalation, excessive risk, obscene remuneration and reckless indebtedness..."

Best not mention the NHS.


"The Carillion affair must deliver at least some return to the public, that of a painful lesson learned. And we must know what it is."

The NHS has instead pushed through painful austerity measures while putting society in a stranglehold. Democratic politics would have ensured that there would have been some public buy-in for the bitter economic medicine Independence have had to swallow in recent months.

The NHS should be concerned about what is going on in this country. Yet it seems absorbed in Momentum to himself.

Unite dismissed the analysis as "completely over-the-top scaremongering".



Yet I fully recognise the offence they have caused.

I would defend your right to say it...

The G4S Hilton is Now serving all you can eat breakfast  for the sake of jobs, the economy and the next generation ..


So we're teaming up with Northern, the rail operator, to offer you the chance to travel anywhere on the network all day for a tenner - or for £17.50 all weekend.

He claimed he was a council contractor and her tree needed cutting down or she would be 'in trouble.'

She continues to maintain her innocence and insists the painkillers she had in her suitcase were for signing a 38-page statement in Arabic, but was instead taken to a prison cell.




Where there is an act of insolvency  the council is able to terminate the lease and take back possession. Unite described the deal as “a landmark agreement which will now set the benchmark for pay rates on flagship construction projects throughout the UK.”


“some EU agencies have published guidance to business outlining that the UK will become a third country when we stop being a member state”

A tragic irony of Exit is that it risks turning into the unbalanced thing it was falsely said to be.

Yet now that the shackles are loose, the cell door unlocked, life on the outside is losing its allure, even for once eager escapees.

Fears are growing among Hinkley Point contractors about their ability to recruit enough workers on the job.

The UK abides by the rules but loses its seat at tables where the rules are written.


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Star Walls

"it's a no-brainer: I would rather face the dangers in space than go back to a war zone."


"When people come back from space, I see how much they want to go again."

"An effort by Republicans to keep the government open for one month was rejected in a vote on Friday night after they failed to address Democratic concerns about young undocumented immigrants known as Dreamers."





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Quadrillo & Psycho Therapy

"Until last year I’d never been in a protest. Now I’m due in court for trying to stop this destructive industry ruining our landscape ... I do feel deeply about inhumanity, greed, the wrecking of the planet, but thus far I had confined myself to petition-signing, infrequent letter-writing and furious, but powerless, indignation in the company of like-minded friends... insensed.

"because of the physical distance – a three-hour round trip from my home ... I began to feel part of the movement. I saw what was happening to the rich green fields and heard Francis Egan, Cuadrilla’s chief executive, boasting about “the biggest gas field in Europe”. I wanted to sweep. The question of what I could do about it became a constant presence."


"He says he left because the party had achieved its aims, ie UK independence, but also because of poor leadership.

Along with five other councillors, Norman's now part of the Independent Group on the council, which is independent from the independent Independents.

If you understood that, you can hear him tell us why he quit UKIP..."



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Improvement Works

"From Monday 22 January, work will begin on various areas. On New Borough, paving works and footpath widening will take place and the ranks will be repositioned into St Hildas.

This will enhance the appearance and improve facilities for pedestrians in the area. A temporary road closure will be in place during the works and there will be a signed diversion...

Member for Castle division and president of the chamber of trade and commerce, said:

“It has been a long-term intention to create a much stronger pedestrian link between the town centre and the seafront and this is a step towards achieving that.

We hope it will increase pedestrian flow to the lower part of the town. I hope residents and visitors will support the local businesses during the works and we would like to apologise in advance for any disruption these works might cause.”"


“They have proven that they are incapable of the most basic functions of government such as keeping the lights on,” says Representative Linda Sanchez. “How can we trust them to face the many challenges our country faces?”

“A lot of shit comes out of that hole,” Dinzes said."

A Quick Poke :


Must be a Swamp thing :-/


"Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”





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Politics goes Pop

"The Time’s Up movement was also an obvious topic of conversation at the festival, a day ahead of the Women's Marches accross the country and the Respect Rally at Sundance The movement, Will.i.am bemoaned, “should have happened a long time ago.”

But on the subject of female empowerment, Will.i.am argued that he can’t empower a woman himself. “A man doesn’t have the power to empower a woman,” he said. “All a man can do is acknowledge the power of a woman. I don’t have the power to give a woman, when a woman gave power to me. So our society is all effed up.”


"UKIP leader Henry Bolton has said the party's national executive committee (NEC) has no right to sit in judgement on his personal life.

And he warned that UKIP faced extinction if the NEC voted to get rid of him as leader when it meets later.

Mr Bolton has faced repeated calls to quit over offensive texts sent by his former girlfriend.

He told the BBC' the NEC was "not a court of moral judgement".

He said he had ended the "romantic element" of his relationship with Jo Marney after she sent texts saying Prince Harry's fiancee Meghan Markle would "taint" the Royal Family.

But he said he would "support her in rebuilding her life", which he said had been "turned on its head"...

UKIP's MEP for the North East of England said UKIP had "shifted" its stance on religious and cultural issues to a degree he could not support."


Thou must not Scratch...


Not quite Henry VIII.



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The Bermuda Triangle

"Up to 1 million people in the UK are taking anabolic steroids and other image- and performance-enhancing drugs (IPEDs) to change the way they look, public health experts and doctors have said.

This ranges from teenagers seeking the perfect physique to elderly men hoping to hang on to youthful looks.

Research suggests that appearance rather than sporting performance is the reason ...

... for a majority of Police forces and border officials are seeing an increase in the number of underground laboratories “cooking” steroids in the UKthose now using anabolic steroids and other IPEDs."


"The government is expected this week to begin a nationwide search for a community willing to host an underground nuclear waste dump to store highly radioactive material for thousands of years...

The project is expected to cost £12bn, spread over a century. The government will bear 55% of the cost, owners of new-build plants such as EDF another 35%, and the final 10% will be covered by a liability fund set aside by previous nuclear operators."

About those Zip wires...




"To grant (a person) a furlough; to give leave of absence to," is what they will find when they open them ... It could yet infiltrate British conversations, although it might require a US-style shutdown at Westminster to do it."

"Where would a man like this head to? Why, dear old London town, of course, where half the oligarchs, thieves, spies, spivs and shits on the planet are welcomed... When we talk of tax havens laundering dirty money, we should think of London and New York as well as the Virgin Islands and Bermuda...."

Oh go on then ...





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The Chameleon Mask

"The past few years have given us a vast array of technological advancements to help us completely avoid the horrors of human interaction.

Worry not, lifeless machines will spare you of all that..."

"THE ugly, alien tide of plastic washing over our precious coastline was much in evidence after high winds blew through Yorkshire. These should be pristine places, not dumping grounds. But go anywhere along the Yorkshire coast, from Spurn in the south to Sandsend in the north, and it’s the same."

"MPs voted by 236 to 220 to support an amendment that saw Conservative and Labour members come together to support a full programme of works that is likely to result in the Commons relocating to a venue in Whitehall from the middle of the next decade.   MPs decided that the risk of a major fire was so great that a total refurbishment costing at least £3.5bn was necessary. It would be the first time either house had moved out of the Victorian-era palace since the Commons chamber was destroyed by a bomb in 1941. Under the plan, the Commons and Lords would move off site in 2025 for an estimated six years."

“I’m delighted that parliament did not duck a decision on its future. We now need a clear plan and to watch costs closely. It’s time we got a grip and made a decision."

And once I added it all up, it’s staggering.

Rekimoto reportedly described the experience of using Chameleon Mask as "surprisingly natural," which does sound surprising.

"This isn’t like installing low-energy lightbulbs, or using public transport more often instead of the car, in order to reduce pollution. Anyone can choose to take such deliberate steps to change their behaviour, but plastic is so much a part of the fabric of everyday life it simply cannot be avoided. I’m typing this on a plastic keyboard connected by plastic-coated cables to a laptop with a plastic casing. The plastic phone has just rung and I jotted notes of the conversation with a plastic ballpoint pen."

"Bryant said the palace was heated by a high-pressure steam heating system that “could burst at any time.”  “I see no signs to visitors, saying welcome to the death trap.”

"I’m about to make a cuppa using a teabag that also contains plastic and boiling water from a plastic kettle...  if that means our beaches being washed only by the sea, and not by a tide of detritus, it can’t happen soon enough."


"Just hire someone to do the moving for you while you beam your face onto a Chameleon Mask from the comfort of your bed and offer words of encouragement."


The Moon is the same size it was last week.


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Space Sports

"Now that the dust has settled from SpaceX’s first Falcon Heavy mission, the company is getting back to its routine with another Falcon 9 launch this weekend. The rocket is slated to take off from California early Sunday morning, sending up an Earth-observation satellite called Paz for Spain...

Of course, there’s a lot of complexity to the system that SpaceX needs to figure out first. The company needs to be able to simultaneously coordinate thousands of satellites in non-geostationary orbit at all times, meaning they won’t stay in a fixed position above the planet. And then there’s the technology needed to receive the internet on Earth. The satellites will constantly be moving over different patches of land, so the receiving antennas will need to be able to rapidly figure out which satellite is best to communicate with at any given time..."


"The top figure in Britain's £40bn maritime sector has said liaising with the Government over Brexit is like "banging your head against a brick wall".

David Dingle, the chairman of industry body Maritime UK, urged ministers to put "pragmatism over politics" as he warned of a possible "meltdown" at Britain's ports on the day the country leaves the EU...

He insisted his industry is "shouting loudly" about their concerns, but suggested there has been little response from ministers.

"You do feel as if you are banging your head against a brick wall," he said.

"Until this Government can find a resolution we're going to have to go on banging our heads against a brick wall."

Mr Dingle added: "We are lost in politics and we want pragmatism over politics."

The UK's maritime sector comprises Britain's shipping industry and ports, as well as services such as ship financing and manufacture, including the building of superyachts.

It is estimated to support close to one million jobs and contribute around £40bn to Britain's GDP..."






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A Tree Shake

It's sad to hear, then, that one of Wales' oldest trees which was probably planted almost a millennium ago has fallen down.

The quake was felt over all of Wales, most of western England, as far east as London and as far north as the southern edge of the Lake District, the British Geological Survey (BGS) said.

"I've just spoken to my team, we've had a quick batting around of the different options and we'll continue doing that over the next few days."

The epicentre was approximately 20km north-north-east of Swansea and at a depth of 7.4km, it added.

The tree, the Buttington Oak, was spotted fallen in its field two miles from the town of Welshpool, Powys, just months after it had been split in half  by 867 votes to 500 & strong winds.

"I ran outside - I was shaking like a leaf... The cat went outside before me, so she must have known."

From Connah's Quay in north Wales... it was "the most excitement I've had on a Saturday afternoon for a while".

63% voted to back a no confidence motion at an extraordinary general meeting

It was just a split second. We can't see anything damaged."

I get a lot of fat wood pigeons jumping up and down on my chimney and I first of all thought the noise was them but they must have put on a heck a lot of weight to make the house shake," she told the BBC.

According to Rob, the oak tree had huge cultural significance as it was a pollard - a tree that had had its upper branches removed and had been planted in the field manually.

... she swore a little bit it felt like "a washing machine breaking down".

"We heard the walls crack and there was a bit of juddering," he added he heard a bang and the settee moved.

"All the neighbours were out asking 'what's happening?'"

No need for you to contact the Emergency Services unless you have something to report ie he had "not finished in politics yet".

Events of this magnitude happen in the UK every three to five years, the BGS said.



"You probably haven't heard of the Battle of Buttington - it took place in 893 between a Viking army and an alliance of Anglo-Saxons and the Welsh.

The battle resulted in the invading Vikings being cornered in a fortification, when they starved after several weeks and were eventually defeated by the combined English and Welsh army.

It's sad that this piece of ancient British history is gone for good. Looks like we'll just have to plant some new trees to make up for it.

Oh, OK :-)