Friday, December 31, 2010
Learning to use Google's translation application, one learns about strange products and customs. It appears that the Japanese are worried about their skin color no less than American Blacks, and whitening creams are common. Why is this?
A growing portion of the population of Western countries is feeling that their societies are headed towards disaster and ethnic strife. Commenter Anon proposes a rational, humane, almost medical approach to measure and to remediate the growing unsustainability. I take the liberty to reproduce his ideas here:
"...Nobody wants to gratuitously humiliate these people (ethnias genetically unfit for Western societies. J.) who are in a very real sense disabled, and badly so. They desperately need help, and this is why I think the problem is actually best conceived of in quasi-medical terms.I feel we are advancing toward the definition of the issue and formulating a solution. Let close the decade with this note of optimism, and pray for a Happy New Decade.
But the truth is that we need fewer of these people, not more, and the exuberantly dysgenic policies being pursued in the West, and by the West in Africa and elsewhere, are not aimed at containing the numbers of these people but rather at expanding them. The load placed on normal people, already under all sorts of other stresses, quickly becomes intolerable; low IQ people are often criminal, usually do not contribute to their own upkeep (unless they are "celebrities", of which there is no shortage), require constant custodial supervision and if present in large numbers, make life a squalid, violent hell for everyone including themselves.
As smart people give up and move out, the whole place gets worse and worse as the ratio of problem solvers to problem creators ("Anon's Ratio") tips over into unsustainability; witness Zimbabwe, Haiti and the Congo, for off-the-shelf examples, and parts of South Africa.
The UK, frighteningly, is not far behind.
The humane, albeit expensive solution is to assist these people with contraception, to provide supportive environments,and to understand the physical limits on their brains, and the mainly genetic underpinnings of their deficiencies. And then to think constructively how to really solve these problems in the long term. I don't doubt it's a long way off, but there might be low hanging fruit which could help a lot in the short term, especially in respect of the mildly impaired."
Thursday, December 30, 2010
Katzav will spend the next fifteen years in jail. In the process, it became obvious that was an incompetent manager, failed to seduce even one office girl in his long career. I doubt he ever introduced his member into a woman other than his ugly wife. The judges said that Katzav's testimony had been "replete with lies," and that he should have accepted the plea bargain that was offered him. He turned it down at the time, saying he would fight for his complete innocence. But the barracudas ripped his balls off.
My bid for the Nova Building in Rehovot Industrial Park was accepted and next week I have to start to study a solution. My impression of Nova: Crazy looking scientists walking purposeless and murmuring in Russian in the large, hyper-clean, empty corridors. Laughing people socializing and smoking in front of the building. No one was "working" or doing anything recognizible as work. I never heard of the company and didnt know what they were doing.
It appears that Nova Measuring Instruments Ltd. makes measuring instruments for semiconductor manufacturers. Conventional measuring equipment is too imprecise for 45 nm chips, so they invented some ingenious device. The owner, you guessed right, is Nochi Dankner.
The project: They hired an architect to add a restaurant and other facilities on the top of the ten floor building, but there are no drawings of the existing water and sewage piping. The kitchen drain should connect to a FOG interceptor in the street. They need ultrapure water or at least soft water. As usual, I am the third engineer on the problem, the others having given up or migrated to the USA. My mission, should I accept it, is to provide the solution and get it approved by the local building committee and supervise its execution. I should have asked for more money.
Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan (POT) lifted more than 5% today. In 2010, CEO Doyle (pic) rejected several large offers to sell the company, saying that it would be against the shareholders's interests. He was right! He is making rich his investors.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Noble Energy published today the results of the Leviatan concession's gas potential, and now we know Israel soon will export energy. TASE jumped like crazy and we started disputing how we will spend the money. It was also published that Iran's nuclear bomb program was delayed three years by the Stuxnet. May be the Zionist dream, "To be a free people in our own country", is around the corner.
Israel's Ministry of Education has an ongoing program to identify gifted children and direct them to special courses. Yet no children from the Ethiopian immigrant community was being selected. Their conscience (pic.: Prof. Firestein) could not stand this injustice. They had to do something.
They prepared a special culture-dependent test for Ethiopians only.
My souq informer supplies the consumables. He says that a bunch of bananas is lowered from the ceiling while the testees build wooden block structures to reach the fruit. He is a hideous racist; all souq merchants are.
Makhteshim is one of Israel's first industries, established to serve the development of Israel's agriculture. In the era before the State, agriculture was seen as the necessary foundation of a healthy nation. Makhteshim grew to become the largest producer of ag pesticides and herbicides in the world. Then it was sold to a private businessman, Nochi Dankner, who is now selling it to ChemChina, a Chinese state-owned conglomerate. The last remnants of Israel's heroic, idealistic past, when each orange and each egg was considered a trascendent historical achievement, is moving to China.
And I am going to benefit from the sale. The shares of Koor, owner of Makhteshim, lifted 9% yesterday.
ChemChina is buying the 53% of Makhteshim held by the public for $1.3 billion and is paying Koor $168 million for another 7%. All the shares will be sold based on the $2.4 billion valuation. Ergo, if and when the deal is consummated, ChemChina would end up with a 60% stake in Makhteshim, with Koor holding the rest. ChemChina is expected to extend a non-recourse loan of $960 million to Koor, secured only by Koor's Makhteshim stock payable in cash or shares. The floating rate loan is to be repaid in seven years at an effective annual rate of about 6% (based on the current relevant Libor rate). Interest charges for the first four years will accrue but not be paid. I dont understand what this loan has to do with the sale.
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
Gafni, from the Religious Party, chairs the Budget Committee. Today he closed down his Committee and will not meet till the Government accepts his principle. Which is: No converts.
Your mother is Jewish and you are a Jew, or not. There are about 500,000 Nordic (Russian) immigrants in Israel whose Jewishness is openly put in doubt. The Army's Rabbinate established a course to convert the immigrant soldiers who wish it. Gafni is sabotaging it. The spirit of Christmas has not descended on him.
Monday, December 27, 2010
The Lotke-Volterra Prey - Predator Simulation Model creates recurring cycles. Economic activity is also cyclical. No one knows why this should be significant. Maybe it is not.
The quiz shows that the model is incomplete. Instead of exponential growth, the logistic curve should appear, the carrying capacity being the upper limit.
The quiz shows that the model is incomplete. Instead of exponential growth, the logistic curve should appear, the carrying capacity being the upper limit.
Among the four precious metals— silver, gold, platinum and palladium —silver is up 74% this year, after palladium, which is up 86%. Gold is up a miserly 26% and copper, 28%. Rich Chinese love the sound of silver coins in their pocket. Me too.
2010 was a good year for optimist bulls like myself. By bouncing back from the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, the U.S. has, once again, demonstrated its resilience. Israel is prospering like never. Older people is commenting on the "excessive" abundance. 2011 will be even better.
Sunday, December 26, 2010
People is writing about the Stuxnet thingie. It an automatic weapon directed at Iran's uranium gas centrifuges. These machines are controlled by SCADA, a common control program. I had many aireators and so on in my plant all operated by SCADA. The Stuxnet thingie gradually accelerated the centrifuges, damaging them. Getting into SCADA is very difficult, but it was done by whoever did it. The wiki says that
The name comes from the River Styx (Greek: Στύξ, Stux, meaning "hate" and "detestation") which formed the boundary between Earth and Hades. The gods respected the Styx and swore binding oaths on it. Its water had miraculous powers and could make someone invulnerable. Achilles was dipped in it in his childhood, acquiring invulnerability, with exception of his heel, by which his mother held him. This is the source of the expression Achilles' heel, a metaphor for a vulnerable spot.כל הכבוד to the person who imagined that this thing was doable, to the one who approved the budget, and the project manager who made it happen. Great.
The USA or Israel?
No doubt Israel is the most dynamic and challenging small country of the world. Only in the USA and Israel a young Jew has the opportunity to participate in such exciting projects. Only the USA and Israel are in a state of permanent "hot" war. For a young Jew, this is the most interesting place. That is my personal experience.
Out of context addendum: Reading the autobiographies of Eastern European Jews, they all describe the schtetl as a very exciting place, where things were always happening. Schtetl were isolated small market villages lost in the tremendous vastness of Poland, Ucraine and Russia, with impassable roads and ignorant subsistance farmers. Yet the inhabitants of the schtetl lived lives full of enterprise and projects, full of family events and serious intellectual debate. It is not where you are, but with whom.
In the past I have done several swimming pool designs. The last one, two years ago, was a heated swimming pool for treatment of children with nervomotor problems. My design was approved by the Ministry of Health with their exhorbitant demands, but the permit was refused because lack of parking space. Recently I have been asked to work on several swimming pools but I had no time. Now I am starting to understand: the Association of Hotels and Zimmers (Bread and Breakfast type of petit hotels) protests that permits are not granted to them because of the impossible demands imposed on swimming pools. Their argument is that the Ministry is applying the regulations taylored to large public swimming pools to their backyard family pools. For example, they need weekly bacteriological samplings, expensive monitoring equipment, a licenced lifeguard all the time and so on. The B&B are operating without business permits and no insurance company is willing to sell them insurance. Any problem they may have with the authorities or with the law, they are defenseless because they are operating without a permit. I have met with some of the owners and they are nervious wrecks.
Saturday, December 25, 2010
While pedalling on the threadmill this morning, and in the absense of new female asses to contemplate, I watched a business report about the coming scarcity (and high prices) of agricultural commodities such as cotton and rice. But the USDA report says production and demand are balanced.
My searching was activated by my big daughters crying that they had nothing to wear (Friday night...!). Their schmattes cost a fortune. I need to make more money. Speculate in Rice? Cotton?
Shlomo was descended from one of the oldest rabbinical dynasties in pre-Holocaust Germany. He was born in Berlin, where his father, Rabbi Hartwig Naftali Carlebach (1889-1967), was a rov. He made aliyah from Brooklyn schul he was leading, and established a community of rather strange grass smoking American hippies near Modiin. I met some of his followers in the army (my unit was full of anti-militaristic American and Russian Jewish neurotics). Although he composed thousands of songs, he couldn’t read musical notes.
Friday, December 24, 2010
In this week's Parashat HaShavuah we learn about Moses Prince of Egypt escaping to the country of Midian. Imagine. The Israelites are labouring on a public works project. An Egyptian superviser is mistreating an Israelite. There comes Moses and kills the Egyptian. Rapidly, he hides the body in the sand. No one has seen him, he goes about his business. Next day, two Israelites are fighting. Moses tries separate them and as he should have known, both turn against him. "What, are you going to kill us as you killed the Egyptian?" they say. What a revolting people those Israelites! Instead of showing gratitude, they are ready to delate him to the police. Moses will not be safe in Egypt with these "stinkers" (delators) blackmailing him. He has to run for his life to the desert. What was Moses thinking while watching those stupid sheep ruminating in Midian? "Bloody Israelites! One saves their life and the next day they will delate you to the police! I'll teach them RELIGION! I'll put the Fear of God in their black hearts and straigthen out their slave mentality!"
Moses was a man of few words. Forty years later all those who blackmailed him were dead. Together with all the other Egyptian-born Israelites. Four thousand year after, the ghost of vengeful Moses is out there haunting us few Israelites still around.
American Jewish media writes that the poor
villagers in Jubbet al-Dhib (a 160 inhabitants encampment near Jerusalem) have been filing repeated requests to be connected to the electricity network since 1988. The Israeli Civil Administration, which governs Palestinian affairs for the army in Area C, has turned down six requests since 2000 alone, on the grounds that the village lacks a master plan. But the Civil Administration has also turned down several master plans that the village has presented.Untypically, there is no exaggeration in the above. The UN Human Rights Watch is absolutely sure that Palestinians are suffering this oppression because of Israeli occupation. It is right. I know first hand that it is almost impossible to get any permit from Israeli bureaucracy. About chicken coops in particular I can personally certify that no one - Jew, Muslim, Christian, Idolater, atheist - ever gets a permit, not near Jerusalem nor in the Negev wastelands. The chicken coop regulations demand detailed designs including a theoretical AERMOD computer model of potential odor dispersion, costing about 15,000 US$, based on meteorological data from the last five years (bad luck if your village is far from a meteorogical station) which will certainly be rejected as insufficient. Your expert may have forgotten to include its dispersion model important potential polluter gases such as xylol. "Sir, you may re-submit the whole thing but since we are short of personnel, no one may look at it till I return from my three-month tour in the Himalayas. What is wrong, you ask? What do you think, I am here to teach you how to make a gas dispersion mathematical model?" This is not a caricature, it is how it is. For once, this is something I know, but no United Nations's Human Rights organization will believe me.
This picture is replicated across the Israeli-controlled West Bank, where Palestinians live with unpaved roads, dried-up wells, a lack of schools and medical facilities, and the persistent inability to obtain permission to build the simplest structures. Even chicken coops may be bulldozed by the Israeli army if they are built without a permit, which is nearly impossible to get.
Thursday, December 23, 2010
This morning I worked in Israel's largest ice cream factory! The meeting room was lined with freezers full of experimental products, such as different kinds of KremBO (a superpopular sweet), icecreams and caramel bars. And some secret suprises. No way to keep fasting in that room. I didnt.
I was contracted to correct the presentation of another engineer that was rejected by the regulators. The piping is terribly complicated (see the different colored pipes which no one knows what are conveying and to where). No piping scheme or drawing is available. It was built adding and changing new production lines and improving and enlarging the equipment. In the last forty years. Yehuda, the Maintainance Manager, was confused about what connects to what. Moreover, he didnt like that I was taking pictures in his factory. Now I have this weekend to imagine how all of it works. The people who employed me must believe I am such a brilliant engineer that I can walk through the factory with an ice cream cone in my hand and submit in a weekend the detailed engineering drawings.
The fact is that it works, the ice cream is excellent, now I have to put all on paper, calculate pressures and flows and temperatures and so on.
From Scientific American: The placebo effect works even if you are aware that you are taking sugar pills.
Patients who receive dummy pills often show clinical improvement. Placebos work, doctors believed, because the mind is a powerful thing. Just thinking you’re being treated can make you feel better. In this study, however, docs told patients they were getting placebos. Eighty patients with irritable bowel syndrome were instructed to take two sugar pills daily. The bottle even had “placebo” printed on it. After three weeks, 60 percent of the placebo group reported relief from symptoms, compared to 35 percent who’d received no treatment at all.Bottom Line: Yes, we are stupid. That's why intelligence is useless in the stock market. And that's why I would prefer not to be the human animal I am. I would like to be something else, but there is nothing else and I have to live within myself till the end.
Koko sent me the pic of his fiance, a bald (hairless) very muscular bonobo. The more I look at the picture, the more uncomfortable I am. He is short, wide shouldered with bulging biceps and a powerful hand. His teeth are large and white, and his expression is defiant and sarcastic. We are very different, very different.
The problem is that we are not. With some cosmetic surgery here and there, he would be easily hired as a nightwatch, a security guard, sargeant, rugby player, rock singer, army general, or CEO of a large corporation in need of a strong leader. He is human. Or it is me who is bonobo? No! I am a human being, no evolutionary twin of Koko-san. He is an animal while I was created by God.
Really, I felt in my guts the rejection of the mere idea that I am like this hairless anthropoid. I dont WANT to be an anthropoid animal. I am but I feel uncomfortable in my skin. I want God to create me and not to evolve in the African savannah.
If I could, I would be a Creationist.
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
הרב דוד חי הכהן Rabbi David Hay (The Kohanite, from the Priestly Tribe) is the head of the Netivot Israel yeshive (theology school) and head of the Orot HaTorah (Light of the Law) community in the Tel Aviv suburb of Bat Yam. He became instantly famous when he was warned by the Secret Service (The Jewish Section) to stop the street protests against Arab and African illegal infiltrators. His retort: