Epitaph to Cecilia AKA Squawk Parakeet

Epitaph to Cecilia AKA Squawk Parakeet, my companion of about the past dozen years, transitioned last night.

Way back then, was it 1999, I was living at the Doran St apartment, Accompanied by Captain Flint so named by grandson Forrest, from his mother I received Captain Flint. Parakeet & cage habitat, as a companion, as I finished my trip to give a presentation of one of my technical papers re KEST to GEO to a hostile rocket-brained ASCE space conference, once again.

Captain Flint needed a mate. Unknown how old he was, yet I thought he needed a mate and progeny if possible in the circumstances. So, back home, remembering seeing a pet shop - Petco? - in a shopping mall a mile or two away, I set out walking to there. In the store I saw a bunch of parakeets milling around ready to be sold. But I could not figure out which were female birds. A woman Latino came by and I asked to pick out a female parakeet for me to buy. She went behind the scenes and a man came out, grabbed a parakeet and took it back out of sight. Soon I was presented with a cardboard box and request to pay for it.

I soon was back on the long sidewalk walk back to my apartment, carrying the cardboard container, looked like a fish carrier to me. Except it was at times violently swinging to one side or the other, accompanied by angry bird noises; the occupant clearly was not tolerant of the present situation of being cooped up in the box, and demanded to be out, and do it now.

Finally arriving at my apartment, I put the new parakeet in the cage with Captain Flint, who had not known anything but mirrors and playtoys just about forever. He was used to pouncing on the mirror parakeets and pecking on them. That did not work with the new bird, who had other ideas about how to be treated.

The matrimony of Captan Flint & spouse did not seem to be going well, so I bought a second cage. outfitted it with birdseed and water, set it next to Captain Flint's cage, and moved the new unwilling bride into it.

Unfortunately, the new bird did not want to be in the new home. She was obsessed with getting back into Captain Flint's cage home.

Getting relationships to work, has always been extra difficult for me; but strive to make them work, I must do. The existence of future generations depends on it, I realized, struggle or no.

A long time friend came to the rescue; she was vastly more wise about relationships than I was, wacky as her own was, even enough to include needy me. She bought a new cage for the two parakeets, and both were put into a new world together at the same time.

In the new parakeet world, a new stability was formed. Two cohabitants ignored each other. Except if Captain Flint began to subdue one of those mirror toys, the betrothed Mrs Flint efficiently knocked Captain Flint down to the bottom of the cage, to then dazedly climb back up. Never learning what was the problem.

My ever-baffled efforts to get them to be lovers seemed to never work. Not unlike my own efforts to find a woman for my life. Yet do my best I continued to do.

Captain Flint seemed to be spending most of his time climbing back up from the bottom of their cage.

One day, Captain Flint did not try to climb back up. Captain Flint, my grandson's gift, was still and unmoving at bottom of cage.

I found I had an unsolvable problem. My goal of enabling Captan Flint to procreate a new generation, was gone. Failed utterly. The End. Yet the new lady (presumably) parakeet remained in the cage. Worse, she seemed totally distressed at the loss of Captain Flint when I removed him for burial. She seemed to think that I could bring him back. Things kept getting more complicated for me.

I continued to feed and water the new lady parakeet, best I could. I had failed my responsibility to have Captain Flint parakeet father a next generation. I now had another parakeet as my responsibility.

I now re-enter present reality and look up behind me, see that same cage with its door wide open, but no parakeet stirs within it, no watchbird to watch over me. All empty. I cannot remember what I was about to write here.

About four days' rations of rum-ethanol probably has something to do with the ongoing.

Anyway, long ago my temporary surrogate mate-friend suggested I name the surviving bird "Squawk" instead of "Cecile" as I had started to do. My friend was ever wiser than me, so the bird became Squawk. Indeed, was the word the bird said most of the time.

Thus maybe a name the bird would recognize as itself.

Squawk Parakeet was a non-stop proclaimer of her opinion. Not just her opinion about the late Captain Flint parakeet, but also about anyone who was handy. Which now was usually me.

Months later, I had the opportunity to escape from the trap of big city landlord's drowning prices of a roof over my head, to a home of my own, a tiny old tract house in a far north desert frontier town built on a vast flood plain made across a former vast volcanic lava multi-state landscape, then filled in at the end of the last ice age by rocks tumbled all the way from Montana to the Oregon Pacific Ocean coast, depositing its round rocks as the underlying strata beneath my new home.

Squawk Parakeet was my companion when driving my car over a thousand miles up to this new place; at first she was baffled in her cage by things jumping around as the car followed the curving road lines. But after a few hours she suddenly discovered that the objects out in front of the car had consistency, and all was interesting to the ever-watchful bird. From then on, it was both hang on to the side of the cage, and make lots of bird-type comments about the traffic ongoing.

In our new home in Ephrata, Washington State, northern desert desolate area, Squawk would not tolerate either a parakeet I bought at a pet store in a neighboring town, nor one given by a neighbor, saying the bird was a stray outdoors. Dual cages for introduction, nothing would work, Squawk would have nothing to do with letting another parakeet share her territory. Laying Squawk's suitors one by one to rest in my backyard spoke its story to me. You can't get there from here, type of thing.

Squawk was my ever-watchful companion every day, making bird type comments about what was on my computer's screen. I was taught by the bird to get a bird call soundtrack playing on my computer for the bird to hear, as soon as I got up each morning, or raspy irritated bird noises would fall upon me, alerting me to a duty not yet fulfilled that morning. Soundtrack playing again through the computer speakers, and all was well again. and I could head toward fixing a cup of coffee to help my day get started.

Valentines Day a year ago, an internet ad got me to buy a pair of red striped water turtles, much as I had lost when I was nine years old, to neighbor kids. Now I could fulfill my responsibility to turtles; my own valentines day was lost, due to my own ineptitude plus the gangs of bullies that ever stalk me these days. But, maybe I could enable a male and female hatchling turtle have companioned bliss, even if I myself could not. So I sent for the advertised pair of male-female turtles, shipped by air in the cold winter, at great cost. It was my chance to enable happiness, at least to the red slider turtle critters that I had failed as a nine year old gullible among clever neighbor boys.

But after abut half a year, one of the pair of growing hatchling turtles died.

The remaining turtle, who had only seemed to previously want to grab food from the other turtle, was now highly distressed. It wanted me to give the other turtle back; very upset turtle. I felt helpless. I could not explain to the remaining turtle that its mate was forever gone. No more than I could provide myself with a new woman. Meanwhile, Squawk Parakeet ever watched over all this turtle stuff. Sometimes making disapproving bird noises. I encouraged turtle and bird to be friends. They did not seem to want to do that. Turtle glared and hid, and bird flapped wings and made raspy noises at the turtle.

A couple of months ago the turtle place in Florida had another special sale of hatchling red slider water turtles. I thought that the remaining turtle might be comforted by a bunch of baby turtles around; surely not replacing a mate, but who knows maybe a bit of comforting companionship to destitute Valentine Day turtle. Most of the cost was in shipment, a small fortune to ship next day by air, hopefully to enable survival in the frigid environment. So, thinking of giving a few turtles to grandkids for Christmas, I bought six instead of three hatchling turtles, requesting both sexes.

Well, it was new pandemonium, six new tiny turtles along with one much bigger lonely turtle and one ever-watchful parakeet bossy bird flapping wings and making raspy comments about the state of the union.

Yet big-turtle got along with little turtles. and when one of little-turtles was found dead one morning and removed, big turtle spent days looking all over into every possible hiding place, for the missing little turtle.

Squawk Parakeet never missed anything going on. Turtles down below, as well as me and my computer screen images, all was Squawk's field of inspection and occasional disapproval noises and wing-flapping. But in general it was a place of stability.

Then Squawk, who was too tubby to fly well, crash-landed into the room and eventually apparently injured a leg. Squawk never complained, but increasingly struggled to deal with a foot then leg that would not work. Parakeets have a curved beak that works like a third foot, and so could get around, but ever more difficult. I fed Squawk food increasingly number of times a day, fresh water, tried to provide something that would look like a nest in which to rest; she would have none of it; never complaining, but not accepting any help.

Squawk Cecile Parakeet was motionless on the bottom of the cage this morning.

I laid her to rest in the backyard this afternoon. My companion for the past dozen years has found it too hard to live with me any more, and has exited. I writhe in weakness of being unable to heal Squawk's wounds or enable her to be mated or happy.

The parakeet cage that was new home to Captain Flint and Cecile/Squawk Parakeet, sits silent behind me, door open, lots of mess needing clean up. Someday, when I can say, my bird friend is really gone, and some stuff needs housecleaning.

The six remaining turtles seem to notice distress too, acting a bit oddly. Big-turtle, the remaining Valentine's Day turtle of last year, is not hiding under the basking ledge as he/she normally does, but instead is motionless in the far end of the turtle container. Littlest-turtle and two mid-sized turtles are in a heap under the warmth of the incandescent sunshine bulb lamp over the basking ledge. One of the basking turtles uses its paws to wipe one eye then the other. looking directly at me. I cover my eyes with my hands, allowing myself to feel my grief once again. One of our family is gone. the world will never be the same again.

"Gone ...." rings a deep bell's silent invisible heavy resonance everywhere. Squawk Cecilia Parakeet, thank you for having been with us in all those times past.

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Priests ought to have the choice to marry a woman and have children

Reference as I continue to cry in the wilderness, as the tree that falls in the wilderness and no one hears it fall - as it is said - I speak a support of Cardinal Keith O'Brien for his recommendation that Priests have the option to marry and have children. Also I stand with his rejection of the homosexuals, tragic victims of the bullies.

Not that my support matters a whit to the powers that be.

Still, I state my position: Priests ought to have the choice to marry a woman and have children. Tis not only kind love for the priests, but also for their better balance of ability to decide issues. Monosexual decisions tend to be off-balance in the long run, although some have advanced the state of mankind despite the handicap of lacking a woman's mating and partnership thriving energies. But far better the path of man plus woman, including the spiritual arbitrators that are Priests.

That the wife needs to support the Priest's clergy duties, not excessively claiming his energies thereof in performance of his duties, seems a desirable condition, although I don't know how to require that. Could be if the wife demands more of his resources that allows his Priestly duty fulfillments, that further decision-making could be necessary.

In my opinion, Cardinal Keith O'Brien, President of the Bishops' Conference of Scotland, I support his considered opinions regarding enabling Priests to marry and have children.

So spoken, in case someone might stumble upon this message some day.

In the Powell lineage, James E. D. Cline


Comments on article about customers unemployment etc

Reference " Why Customers Are Disappearing, Why Higher Unemployment Is the Likely Result, and Why Many in Washington Don't Have Half a Brain" by Robert Reich. That author seems to make the most sense to me, consistently, regarding business and politics on the national scale.

He suggested that the congress critters set aside ideology for one minute to agree on just one thing" "... that businesses hire more workers if they have more customers, and fire workers if they have fewer customers...."

Somehow I find it unlikely that the congress folks have only half a brain or less. Could be that the Man With the Golden Needle has done a quick left-frontal lobotomy on all of them by now, but I would rather hope not.

As far as I know, the Democrats understand that relationship between companies, their workers, and customers, no problem in agreeing about that. But there is intense partisanship going on in Congress so far this millennium. And currently it is so intense that the right side of the isle folks are apparently in a "united we stand and otherwise we fall" mode, and external faceless entities are doing the puppet strings on those right-islers, as demonstrated by their incessant inability to make their own decisions. It is like they are true "Representatives" and are of various elected areas of the population, but based on their actions as Congresspeople, it is not at all clear who they actually are representing. Does not seem likely they are representing but at most a wealthy few of those who voted for them, otherwise they would be helping to get government to get the economy going again like in the Great Depression. Otherwise, it is carve up America into a bunch of feudalistic kingdoms, only cooperating in government to provide for the common defense. And everything is privatized, lots of new owner-managers in the saddle having the good life by now owning the national transportation highway system etc.

But no, they have the Congress seats and they are able, if all are mindlessly united, to continue to put the brakes on the economy on and on. They have had a huge number of opportunities big and small to agree to economy boosting measures, but like huey-dewey-louie they just say no-no-no.

Why is that? The Republicans in the more distant past have done a great job of governing America, considering the circumstances at the time. Something else is going on nowadays. Only for a moment do I consider it is all a fallout from the "Y2K" scare that opened this millennium.

Could it be mass hypnotism of the right wingers, using their habit of using big letters in varying bright colors making angry accusations? Enough intense pounding in the background of certain radio announcers on the radio ranting about the wrongs of the Democrats, is bound to influence decisions especially when not personally knowing the true facts, which few people have access to. Yet, why bother doing that, are those ranting radio announcers sitting on a painful thumbtack on their chair (I personally often knew that feeling from school days being bullied) or some other major suffering they cannot deal with, so they rage on the air about what they are told to rage about? Of course, the listeners can turn their radios off, but they don't. It is like a mass hypnotized mind-lock. But why bother doing that?

A thought keep creeping back into my mind, that the right-wingers are terrified that if they are not "boss" then they are at risk of getting called out for things like war crimes, mass murder of tens of thousands of people in other countries by use of bunker busters from no less than the American military ... who were only following orders. That kind of viewpoint has appeared on the net at times, but only briefly... but enough to maybe have the right-wingers truly terrified of formally being accused and impartially judged, scary thought to change from being heroes of the nation to being gross villains. No one would like that; is understandable. But most people are not into the blame mode so intensely, and understand that those huge mistakes were often made by people who were misinformed and hurried into decisions with little to go on, and lots of pressure to go to war, by faceless nameless influencers. A very messy past, that seems from here looking back. But, not all people can have that attitude; by nature those are blamers .. of others usually, of course. Their fury and righteous justice mindset of what to do to those who are blamed, could get really scary when the fury of the blame looks like it could backfire and be pointed square back at themselves. The only safe place is to be boss. Boss of the only superpower in the world. Thus nothing would count except to get back in the boss's saddle again, then they will have no one to fear, able to pull all kinds of strings, potential witnesses and accusers suddenly are accidentally struck down one after another; safety happens and the boss and company will be back into the good life again, in control of everything, life is good.

But there is this small problem of the Democrats happen to be in the saddle right now. Got to get them to fall off that horse. Trip up everything; eventually enough people will be hurting they will in desperation and vote the bunch who pose as GOP nowadays back to be boss.

Aargh. What a dismal thought train the above is. What has become of America? I noticed an item today online quoting one of the right-wing radio ranters about bemoaning what has happened to "his " country. I noticed he did not say "our" country; he was quoted as saying it was "his" country, as if his alone.

Well, I make lots of mistakes, especially when people are involved; goes with the innate gullibility of Aspergers re other people.

But it still seems to me that America is an "our" thing, not a "mine alone" thing. I see two first effects of changing "our" to "mine alone:" the first is that only my viewpoint and decisions have any validity, which makes it easy to make proclamations about reality; the second one is wow what a huge responsibility to have square on ones shoulders alone, yikes.

Now if a bunch of people simultaneously sing "My country tis of Thee..." we each have claimed ownership of the country - in that song we have little time to consider that our neighbor also singing has just now claimed to own that which I have claimed to own: big trouble ahead in River City ... then we are rescued by "... tis of Thee..." and a greater authority is proclaimed the owner. Whew. Spared the necessity of getting into a fight with all those other people who just said they owned what I own instead of me owning it all.

Now, this is an overly simplistic example, of course. Yet to the subconscious mind, this point of view might indeed be stirring up some reactions about things in the future. Like the ranting radio announcer declaring that America is "his" as if alone, and especially is not belonging to those horrid Democrats who are trying to rob the rich to feed the slackers.

Does all that wandering trail-sniffing and even my own ranting at times, succeed in defending the completeness of the brains of the congress critters who have our fates in their hands? Doesn't matter; they will never know of my words on this blog; no one leaves comments and thus no one reads what I write.

Actually, I prefer it that way. I still remember the grief caused to me when I got "flamed" repeatedly about my writings back in the late 1980's and early 1990's, about my Centristation space station concept, and my hoop-shaped way of building an internally centrifugally-supported space elevator out of ordinary strength materials instead of waiting for adequate tether materials to be created far in the future to build a tether type space elevator to develop solar power satellites enough to power the world cleanly. No one chimed in and said hey lets look at this and see its potentials; it was just "flaming" and filibustering. Nowadays, it is less stressful, just being ignored.

Still, I wonder about the article's claim that Congresspeople had only half a brain or maybe less. I think it more likely that they are simply misguided. Well, maybe also a bit brain-burned by cell phones and beamed-RF sedation devices, who knows. People-stuff is complicated.


Aircraft and bridges

Leonardo DaVinci, with all his amazing artistic and innovative technological genius, strived mightily to be able to fly, but never got to do it. In contrast, the least innovative of us now can fly far and wide, even to a far country half way around the world, only needing a big enough fistful of cash - or its equivalent - to do it, instead of having great genius, craftsmanship and artistic vision with which to power it to happen.

The wishful vision of being able to just fly across a deep canyon to its other side, or across far above a wide raging river, instead of having to make the difficult and dangerous journey down and across and back up again, no doubt has often been a dream in the traveler's eye of old. Yet nowadays we simply motor our car straightway from one side of the deep canyon to the other, or across the wide raging river, without even a thought as it being any different from the flat land that came before or after it; but instead of an aircraft to provide the trip across the enormous gap, we simply drive across a bridge. In fact, the great bridge spanning the wide gap from one side to the other, can be providing passage for large numbers of cars at the same time, in both directions too, even semi trucks, all without the need for aircraft to ferry them across the huge rough gap.

Bridges thus are a bit like aircraft that way. Or at least it seems that way to me.

But not so, to others, such as those who are in the ferrying business, or aircraft business, as their bread-and-butter provider. Even to those whose business is that of providing rockets to transport from the ground to high in space, the very idea of a bridge providing the service of an energy-efficient transportation link from one place to another as a rocket does, is outrageous.

When I proposed the possibility of a bridge whose primary structural support was not provided by the strength of its materials, but instead by stored energy within the structure that would enable truly enormous spans to be crossed, and that such a bridge could be built in a hoop shape that encircled a planet eccentrically in a quasi-ellipse shape from ground to the geostationary orbit, balancing the force of gravity by the outward-thrusting centrifugal force within the structure, along which traffic could efficiently flow 2/7 in both directions at the same time, was intensely scorned by those in the aircraft and rocket industries. Bridges had no place butting into their business territory; and if they did, it would not be until the business folks had managed to take the new transportation means over as if their own, in their control, with no thanks to me.

DaVinci never got to fly, but his vision that a mechanical contraption could enable people to fly through the air, crossing deep canyons and raging rivers, did come to pass.

Sometimes one has to settle for merely the dream that is the treasure map enabling something to happen that otherwise would not happen.

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Horsemeat and species preservation

The very idea of horse-meat getting into our hamburgers seems appalling. The very thought that the majestic steeds whose strength and personalities can companion and transport us, and has done so off and on over millennia, could end up in between sesame buns and covered with cheese and tomato, accompanied by french fried potatoes and a soda, is a no-no.

Yet in the longer ups and downs of civilization, in the scarce times, people tend to put their few remaining resources into that which supports human survival the best. Other species tend to go extinct. In fact, even in present-day good times, lots of species are going extinct each week simply because we are taking over their living space and we couldn't care less about those diverse creatures' existence, not even giving them a hello-goodby as they perish; we are to busy to pay attention to where our boots stomp. But horses, now, they have been special.

The subject article confronts us with this reality a bit. Apparently in Romania, the noble steed which can transport us through thick and thin, snow or desert, and find its own fuel in the grassland if necessary, at times has become needed food with which to survive.

Compare with the traditional steer or cow, which we feed until big enough to eat. Both cow and horse and even farm pig will look you in the eye and greet you as fellow beings on this planet now. Each of them is dependent on our support for them to live. And when we have messed up in our endless games of Whose-Boss-Here, resources get thin, and which creatures will be supported by people becomes one of the questions. Cows and steers provide us with milk and steak and hamburgers, and we give grain and feed to support them. Horses, on the other hand, could also provide hamburger meat - although not milk - yet before being part of a burger, a horse could provide us transportation and pull a plow; they have done so off and on for millennia.

Now a one-horsepower transportation may not seem much, as compared to our hundred horsepower steel and glass wheels that take us to work and the shopping center. But for a few tens of miles at a time, the one-horsepower horse can give us a lift almost as fast and vastly more energy efficiently. The hay-burner goes without any visit to the gas station, but has other quirks - hay is big and heavy, for one. Could one's car pull a plow to cultivate a field to grow food in a pinch? Maybe, especially if gas remained available and affordable. But a horse has done that for ages and can be powered by some of the agriculture which it helps plant and harvest.

And as Romania has shown, horses can also provide meat for lasagna and burgers, when work-time is done. Can a steer do that? Only the burger part. So, which is more versatile yet also provides us nourishment both in helping harvest but also as steak? The noble steed would logically be the choice.

Now, I have no interest in a horse-meat burger, any more than a kangaroo burger, such as was sold some decades ago, before an uproar against using the cute critters for burger makings put a stop to it.

The point am trying to - uncomfortably - make here, is that in the longer view of history, the species we find valuable enough to provide us food, are the creatures that we invest meager resources in preserving when the chips are down in the cycles of civilization.

I have sometimes wondered, does a bovine consider its life worth living, especially if in a feedlot existence, simply to end up as meat between halves of a sesame bun?

After much pondering, and also knowing that I cannot really speak from the perspective of such a creature, I would say that the answer is probably yes. Because, it is better to have loved and lost, than not to have loved at all.

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The Triune Brain and Inventors' Squabbling

The Triune Brain concept, popularized by Carl Sagan, may be able to explain the squabbling amongst inventors, such as that between Tesla and Edison over the basic nature of power generating and transmission systems, and among the greats of the early days of electronics, who sometimes got into quite abusive confrontations. The decision as to who thought of what first and who implemented some concept physically first, seemed to reduce the very brainy innovative functioning mind down to something resembling pre-schoolers fighting over who owns which toys.

What brings this subject up again to me right now, is a post on yahoogroups solar power satellite place forum, by Mark Reiff. The post tells about a type of spacecraft propulsion system that seems to violate Newtonian Physics. in which he refers in turn to an article in Wired Magazine The post declares that working demonstration devices have been made of a "propellant-less reaction drive." Existing spacecraft propulsion systems depend on expelling propellant at high velocity, so as to produce an equal and opposite thrust in the opposite direction, thus accelerating a spacecraft or maintaining a satellite's position in orbit. These systems depend on having mass aboard to be used up while producing the thrust; and, the propellant eventually gets used up and no more thrust from the reaction engine is possible thereafter.

The "EmDrive" propellant-less reaction engine described in Reiff's post, turns out has been explored since about 1990, it says, but gets lots of scoffs from many esteemed entities, since it flagrantly would violate Newtonian physics. Yet it claims that demonstration devices have been built by the British engineer Roger Shawyer and now Yang Juan in China too.

It may be hard to forgive large esteemed entities such as corporations or even NASA, when they snatch new concepts from lone innovators and give the ideas to well-funded and academically esteemed researchers, who then are unable to produce much of value, and thus the innovative ideas are discredited or thinking is deliberately diverted away into non-productive paths. Yet this behavior is understandable in the light of the need to maintain a steady pace of development and utilization based on long established technology, playing it safe and yet they are ever fearful of something new coming up and obsoleting all of that which their fame and fortune depends. Definitely not a tolerable situation; thus inertia just maintains the original path, while the innovative concepts are denigrated to show the supremacy of the conventional ways.

Yet the concept of a propulsion device that violates Newtonian physics has been around a long time. I recall in my Junior or Senior year in high school, of reading about the Einsteinian relativistic drive, which similarly would seem to violate Newtonian Physics, by producing thrust without expelling propellant as in an ordinary reaction engine driven system.

The basic concept of the Einsteinian relativistic drive, as I understood it circa 1953-1954, was of a closed system in which mass was cycling back and forth between two ends of a closed system. However, the mass was accelerated to relativistic velocities when going in one direction, but when that particle is returning to its starting point, the mass traveled much slower. It was the same mass stream cycling back and forth, and not being used up. But the thrust of the relativistic mass in one direction unbalanced the more Newtonian thrust of the mass going back in the opposite direction. For example, a particle of the mass stream in one direction was accelerated up to say 99% of the velocity of light, and thus a large mass being shoved to provide reaction to the enclosed system; but that particle only travels half that velocity when returning back to its starting point, and thus very little relativistic mass for thrust in that direction. Thus the particles in transit in the direction at near the velocity of light, would be half the number going in the return direction, yet the overall particulate mass transfer remains constant, and no propellant is used up in the process.

But how to demonstrate that Einsteinian relativistic closed system spacecraft thrust engine with the technology of the mid-1950's, was not apparent to me. And, since it seemed to violate Newtonian physics, and was beyond my high school math skill-set at the time, I set it aside, but not forgotten.

The device as described in Reiff's post, would also appear to produce unbalanced thrust in defiance of Newtonian physics, and thus reminds me of the Einsteinian relativistic propulsion concept. So maybe they are related or even the same thing. Could be that resonant coherent waves can trap particles to speed them up to velocities approaching the velocity of light, thus amplifying their mass for thrust in one direction, but having the particles return back but traveling back at far below relativistic velocities. It seems to me that Shawyer and Yang may have implemented the mid-1950's Einsteinian relativistic propulsion system concept in physical devices, at long last.

At this point, human behavior starts getting expressed. A way of looking at Carl Sagan's triune brain description of each human being, is akin to a totem pole where are three loosely connected brains, the top one is like a wizard; the middle one is like a mammal; and the bottom one is like a reptile. And in human relationships, the reptiles interact like reptiles do, while the mammals are interacting like mammals do, and the wizards interact like amazing wizards do - in this case dreaming up the relativistic propulsion concept and implementing it. But the reptilians are fighting over territory, credit, reward due; and the mammalian brains are fighting over mammalian-herd hierarchical position with its due rewards.

Enormous royalties were sometimes paid to the proclaimed inventors; a nice reward for their work of innovation. The squabbles amongst the innovators as to who came up with what idea and used it to build a device utilizing the concept, ultimately would end up at the patent office, who would review the documents provided by the various innovators, and decide from the documents, who did what first, and therefore was due all the royalties produced through the manufacture and use of beneficial devices thus available to civilization. No doubt back in those days, even as is happening in present times, the snatching or destruction of documents that would have proven someone was the originator of a concept as reviewed by the patent office, goes on. And there are huge factors of academic esteem - on which fame and fortune rests - as well as corporate declaration of technological territory for their exclusive exploitation (or suppression) that pretty much squash the lone innovators who explore where others don't go in technological innovative concepts, but are unable to secure their documents against snatching for use by more esteemed and wealthy users. (I have been struggling with this problem for decades, more severely very recently, very skilled intruders digging ever deeper into my few remaining documents I made of my concepts over the decades - then they even smugly say that my concepts either don't work or if they do, I must have stolen them from some academically esteemed person, instead of originating them myself. Lots of reptilian ego and mammalian herd status stuff going on.)

Carl Sagan's ever brilliant technological comprehension and communication skills, has once again provided basis for comprehension of inventors' squabbles, through the concept of the Triune Brain. Thanks again, Carl, for having been there for humanity.

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Paying too much

I occasionally do armchair theorizing about what is going on with the economy and politics. (Yes, I know I am quite incompetent regarding business and politics things, but I still have to attempt to figure it out.)

Paying too much, "overpricing," seems to me to be why the "1%" exist. By using the "charge what the market will bear" and paying as little as possible for what they pay for, along with price-fixing and business territory control to block competition, the ultra-wealthy have cheated countless people out of their fair share all along the road to be among the 1%. And, more than that.

As most armchair-theorizing tends to be, that is way too simple and misses lots of boots-on-the-ground stuff. But….

An example would be when a small group of oilmen determine that lots of oil is under some poor farmer's farm. They keep the knowledge of the oil secret, and wait until hard times falls on the farmer, who gladly sells the farm for less than it is worth even for a farm. Property now theirs at the cheapest possible price, the oilmen strut in and begin to reap millions in profit off the oil they pull up from under the former farm. In such ways the 1% work their way up to be in the 0.1%, big game sport they play. Buy low, sell high, and do the least possible value-added in between. They no doubt see it all as fine business practice instead of as cheating others in a massively big way.

In a world with more justice, how else could it have been done? Given that the price of oil is fixed by the larger world economy, they can't very well charge significantly less for the oil from under the farm. If the oilmen simply took out a good working wage for their kind of expert value-added work they did by paying for oil exploration, the putting in of the oil wells, and arranging oil transportation to market, to provide them a comfortable life and family provision, that would still leave millions of dollars extra. Those extra millions of dollars, what to do with them in this fantasy more-just world? Seems to be to divvy it up between the farmer and the land. The farmer gets enough money for the farm to be able to support he and his family and go buy a fully productive similar-sized farm elsewhere. That leaves millions still, and it seems to me that part of the oil income from under the farm, ought to go into a fund to support the land, compensate the land for the resources being taken from it without expectation of the oil being returned.

This idea of the land (and all natural resources of the planet) being paid for the resources removed from it by civilization, leads to some very interesting scenarios. Would require a just administrator, of course (and our business-controlled political system has a hard time finding such people nowadays, unfortunately) and the specification would be to use the moneys to improve the land and all other natural resources. 

Then the question, what is "improvement" of the land-water-air animals-plants etc. There would be big money available for big projects. Create ecosystem preserves and provide for their appropriate maintenance. Bring water to the rest of the non-preserve desert lands to enable it to become productive. National parks all over the place. Money for renewal energy research galore, rapid progress there. 

This pay-the-land-for-resources-removed would logically extend down to paying a bit for every fish caught in the river by a sports fisherman, and all the oxygen burned out of the air by one's car, would need to be paid-for, and the moneys be used to strive to provide for more and happier fish in the river and replacement of oxygen into the air somewhere. 

Thus this happens to lead in the direction of long term sustainability. 

The difference between that way of doing things, versus the way that it is done now that simply super-fattens the accounts of the ultra-wealthy, is an end result of this armchair theorizing.

Fact remains, the 1% happen, not unlike the schoolyard bullies happened. And the land slowly sickens and dies as we tromp all over it in our quest for wealth. And the 1% are boss. And they are probably not going to voluntarily give up part of their piles of ultra-wealth, to pay back the land and other natural resources they harvested but did not pay the land for. 

Still, it seems that this is a way out of some of the big problems that America and the world are creating ever faster.