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Gender: Male
Hometown: Western PA
Current location: Houston, TX
Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 38,391

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Peak water - here's a thought-provoking illustration...

How much water is on Earth?

In this illustration, the blue ball represents the volume of all the water on earth, relative to the size of the earth. The tiny speck to the right of the blue ball represents Earth's fresh water.
CREDIT: David Gallo/WHOI

If Earth was the size of a basketball, all of its water would fit into a ping pong ball.


Oceans create a water layer spanning 15,000 miles (24,000 kilometers) across the planet at an average depth of more than 2 miles (3.2 km). If you poured all of the world's water on the United States and could contain it, you'd create a lake 90 miles (145 km) deep.

This seems, and looks, like a lot of water, Gallo told Life's Little Mysteries, but looks can be deceiving.

If the Earth was an apple, Gallo said, the water layer would be thinner than the fruit's skin.

The Earth's freshwater is even rarer.


More at: http://www.lifeslittlemysteries.com/829-how-much-water-on-earth-100909html.html

Holy shit.

Born this date: March 21, 1856: Henry O. Flipper, first African American West Point graduate


"As honorable a record in the Army as any officer in it"

Born into slavery in Thomasville, Georgia, on March 21, 1856, Henry Ossian Flipper was appointed to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, in 1873. Over the next four years he overcame harassment, isolation, and insults to become West Point's first African American graduate and the first African American commissioned officer in the regular U.S. Army. Flipper was stationed first at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, later served at Forts Elliott, Quitman, and Davis, Texas. He served as a signal officer and quartermaster, fought Apaches, installed telegraph lines, and supervised the building of roads. At Fort Sill, the young lieutenant directed the construction of a drainage system that helped prevent the spread of malaria. Still known as "Flipper's Ditch," the ditch is commemorated by a bronze marker at Fort Sill and the fort is listed as a National Historic Landmark.

In 1881, while serving at Fort Davis, Flipper's commanding officer accused him of embezzling $3,791.77 from commissary funds. A court-martial found him not guilty of embezzlement but convicted him of conduct unbecoming an officer and ordered him dismissed from the Army.

After his dishonorable discharge, Flipper fought to clear his name as he pursued a career as an engineer and an expert on Spanish and Mexican land law. In 1898, a bill reinstating him into the Army and restoring his rank was introduced in Congress on his behalf. To bolster his case, he sent Congressman John A. T. Hull, chairman of the House Committee on Military Affairs, [a] letter ... along with a brief supporting the bill's passage. Flipper's letter to Hull is an eloquent statement asking Congress for "that justice which every American citizen has the right to ask." The bill and several later ones were tabled, and Flipper died in 1940 without vindication, but in 1976, the Army granted him an honorable discharge, and in 1999, President Bill Clinton issued him a full pardon.

The National Archives and Records Administration is pleased to present these documents from the career of a man who served his country with honor and fought injustice tenaciously.

I'm forever in awe of those that stand up to an entire society for simple, fundamental human rights - at such overwhelming personal costs.

One Virginia woman's response...

From tumblr.com:

How one Virginia woman is responding to her state legislators that voted in favor of VAís forced ultrasound bill.

She posts this message on each one of their Facebook pages:

Hi Senator _____________! I just wanted to let you know, since youíre concerned with womenís health, that my period started today! Color looks good, flow not too heavy. Cramps are pretty manageable but donít worry - Iíll make sure to let you know if that changes! Thanks again for caring so much about women and our bodies!

If legislators in your state or those representing you at the federal level have voted for anti-choice bills, this is a great way to *thank* them.

Ms Connelly!

Santorum: My grades suffered because I was conservative.

"Santorum's Profs Beg to Differ"


March 11, 2012|By Karen Heller, Inquirer Columnist


"I can tell you professor after professor who docked my grades because of the viewpoints I expressed and the papers that I wrote. There's no question that happened," Santorum said. He added: "I used to go to war with some of my professors, who thought I was out of the pale, these are just not proper ideas," noting, "There is clearly a bias at the university."


"I never received a complaint from any students that a professor had downgraded them because they were conservative and the professor was too liberal, or a student was too liberal with a conservative professor," Robert Friedman told me. He served as chair of the political science department in the late 1970s when Santorum was a student. "Any problem he had with his grades had nothing to do with the fact that he was politically conservative."Friedman said. "He wasn't a very serious student."

"He was an OK student," noted O'Connor, "not great."


The real story about Rick Santorum's education is this one: "He was telling a story that isn't true," Friedman said. "It's a fantasy," Eisenstein echoed. "You're in a political campaign and you're dealing with people you can get to applaud if you tell stories about people being indoctrinated and liberal professors, but it's not true."

"I was indoctrinated at that Berkeley-esque bastion of liberalism: Penn State. I mean, look at this beard." :jagoffsmilie:
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