August 2005


El_Hober's User Page – Last.fm

It may have gotten all pink and slow, but last.fm is still a really awesome idea. I am a little worried though, just by how fucking slow the site has become since the big overhaul, and by the fact that I'm having a hard time finding where to download the plugins. All in all though, I'm very pleased with the quality of design and interface I'm running into here.

If you have a supported media player (you probably do, they have plugins for most of the good ones, and most of the popular ones). I'd really suggest giving it a go.

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Museum exhibits a creationist viewpoint – Yahoo! News

I've had it with these goddamn people, here's my favorite part of the whole article. Mostly it's my favorite because it pretty much sums up the total lack of perspective these people have.

"Another exhibit confirms that dinosaurs, like all land creatures created on Day 6, were on Noah's Ark. The exhibit maintains that the ark could accommodate them because it was huge–450 feet long, 75 feet wide and 45 feet high–and only smaller, adolescent dinosaurs were put on board."

Do they seriously think that 1,518,750 cubic feet (not even taking into account the structural elements you need to make a ship not collapse) is enough to hold TWO of every animal species that has ever been? What the hell is wrong with these people?

Ok, I don't know much about taking care of animals and disregarding the fact that bones CAN'T fossilize in the time periods these people think the world has existed, but let's take a look at how many animals there are in the world. I found this USGS Page that talks about the number of known dinosaurs, and gives it in relation to the number of current animals. They say there are 700 dinosaur species, with probably 700-900 more that haven't been discovered yet. Just to be nice and easy on the damn creationists, let's cut the estimate in half and say 1,150 species of dinosaurs.

Now let's see how much space each species would get if Noah and his family stayed on the roof of the ark and only took dinosaurs, letting the rest of the animals drown. 1,518,750 cubic feet divided by 1,150 is a little over 1,300 cubic feet. That's a little over a 10x10x10 room to store two animals, as well as the food to feed them for over a month.

Now let's add the animals alive today into the equation. I actually couldn't find an estimate of the number of animals in the world, but I did find the numbers for just Canada. So from now on we'll see if Noah could have saved the dinosaurs and Canada.

According to this page Canada has 662 species of mammals, birds and reptiles. I omitted anything that MIGHT live in the water, because I want to make it as easy as possible for these people to make some bit of sense. That's a total of 1,812 species, which gives each one a little over 800 cubic feet.

That could maybe be done, so let's see if he could also save Australia, Australia has 1,745 species of mammals, birds and reptiles, bringing the total up to 3,557. This brings the space for each animal down to 425 cubic feet. That's a room with a 7.5×7.5×7.5 room, to hold 2 animals and the food to feed them for a month.

I still haven't found a number for the animals in the world that doesn't include insects, but I found this page with the number of birds in a few places. Let's add the birds of Guatemala to the equation, because they're most likely to be different from the ones in Canada and Australia, there are 1525 species of birds in Guatemala alone. That brings to total number to 5,082 species Noah would have to cram onto his boat to save the dinosaurs, Canada, Australia and the Birds of Guatemala. That's 300 cubic feet per species, 150 cubic feet per animal. That means to save just this small portion of the animals creationists think Noah fit on an ark, each animal would have an average of a 5x5x5 space to keep it and all its food for 40 days.

I've written this completely disregarding all the plants that would be destroyed by the flood, and the MILLIONS of species of insects. I feel like I've made my point, but before I close I have one more thing to say.

After being underwater for 40 days, all the plants in the world would be dead, and Noah and all his animals would fucking starve to death once the flood receded anyway. Creationism is nonsense, and anybody who believes it is a fucking moron.

Wow, what a fucked up world we live in today. This morning an old man came to my front door asking for work, he said he needed to make $3 to buy bread. It was the most heartbreaking thing I've seen in a long time.

By the time I got to the door he had already started skittishly back across my shitty dirt yard, undoubtedly on his way to the house across the street. He looked almost afraid when I came out onto the porch, and was endlessly apologetic. He explained that he can't find a job, and that he needed $3 to buy bread. It made me feel even worse that I didn't have $3 to give him, or even some bread. My refrigerator has seen better days, at the moment we have a little frozen chicken, some salad, and lots of condiments to put on the food that we don't have.

But I have no right to complain, I'm a white kid from a middle class household (even if it is actually two middle class households). This guy had to be pushing 50, and he was practically licking my feet for $3, and that's wrong. Almost as wrong as the way our country tends to treat homeless people, like they don't exist. Almost as wrong as the way our charities treat the homeless, like they're somewhere just below stray dogs in the scheme of things.

Ever been to a park where they have benches with those funny little dividers? Well those aren't to make sure that only three people sit on the bench, or to assure us that our fat American asses won't be touching any other fat American asses. They're there to keep homeless people from sleeping on them. You know those "no loitering" signs everywhere? They're not to get rid of kids hanging out (well, they might be a little bit), they're there to keep homeless people from having somewhere to sit.

The government doesn't give a fuck about these people, they don't want to spend money trying to help them, giving them jobs, to at least doing something to help get them back on their feet. No, they spend their money putting up no loitering signs, adding funny little rails to the seats of benches, and paying cops to make sure there aren't any homeless people being homeless where we might see them.

The so-called charities that make such a big show of caring about homeless people are even worse, because for all the time and effort they put into their show of humanitarianism, they don't respect homeless people. When a stray dog gets picked up off the street they give it food, medical care, and then they try to send it back out into the world somewhere where it is wanted. They spend how much money getting stray dogs to good owners, sending the troubled ones to rehabilitative dog camp? When a stray person comes in though, they give them a little food, a room for the night, and then just let them loose again without really helping them at all.

This is really just another classic case of treating the symptoms but not the disease. Homelessness will be a problem as long as we keep trying to sweep it under the rug, trying to keep them from dying in the streets, and trying to keep them segregated to alleys and poor parts of town. Until we try to actually get them back into society, they'll stay outside of it.

give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day, teach a man to fish [or give him a fishing pole] and he'll eat for a lifetime

American Dream Photo by
Deon Staffelbach
Portraits by
Leroy Skalstad