Monday, January 15, 2018

Math Revisited: Algebraic Homology

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Algebraic homology is a branch of topology that is used to analyze higher-dimensional structures. This is accomplished by first converting them into flat, two-dimensional configurations, then assigning algebraic symbols to each 'dimension' (chain). Let's consider a relatively simple example: the basic torus pattern shown above:

If one were now to fold over the left and right sides so they join, ABA-left to ABA-right, s/he would be well on the way to re-forming the torus. Taping the two sides together, for example, would form a cylinder or straight tube. To complete the process, one simply joins the oppositely situated circles, ADA-top to ADA-bottom.

Arrows are used to define consistent directions, and either numbers or Greek letters can be assigned to the box sides. This is for ease of identification of the particular equivalence classes.  For example, arrows assigned to segments AB and BA on both sides of the shape shown above are made to point in the same direction, say top to bottom. The same direction implies two sides have to blend together when connected. A similar consideration applies to the bottom ends (AD + DA) when joined. So that the arrow from A to D on top would match an arrow direction from A to D on the bottom.

Thus, for the ‘top’ side of the torus:

A ---->-----D ----->------ A

and, for the ‘bottom’ side:

A ---->-----D -----> ------ A

One could go one step further, as I indicated, and assign Greek letters to the different segments. For example:

a  : A ---->-----D -----> ------ A

b : A ---->-----D -----> ------ A

We now have a one-dimensional homology space (H1) denoted by:

H1 = ( a +   b )

The same applies to the complementary homology space (H1') that runs vertically so as to join the left and right sides, which we might denote by:

H1' = ( +   g)

These are not just homological spaces but cycles - that are themselves not boundaries. For example, one large cycle would be made by going around the outermost ‘space’ in a clockwise sense, as starting from the ‘A’ in the upper left corner. We would have:

(A-D-A) -> (A-B-A) ->[-(A-D-A)] ->[-(A-B-A)]

where the -(minus) signs precede the last two terms and help to distinguish their direction from opposite the ‘positive’ space- defined above. This could also be written in a shorthand form:

H1 + (H1') - H1 - (H1')

It can clearly be see that the ‘boundary’ vanishes, since both pairs of sides (H1, H1') cancel out (having opposite signs for opposite directions). This can, of course, be written to include the ‘space’ elements:

[( a +   b)] + [( +   g)] - [( a +   b)] - [( +   g)]

whence we clearly see mutually cancelling space elements

Note  that 1-cycles in a triangulated space can be generated by closed curves of the space formed by the edges of the triangulation. One can thereby form the factor group:

H1 = Z1/ B1

which amounts (roughly) to counting the closed curves that appear in the space (which are not there simply by virtue of being the boundary of a 2-dimensional segment)

Re-posing the factor group: dim H1 = dim Z1 - dim B1

where dim Z1 = [b + 1 - n] for any connected complex

And: b = branches, n = nodes

For the torus shown:

b = 4 and n = 4

so: dim Z1 = 4 + 1 - 4 = 1 = dim H1

and dim B1 = dim Z1 - dim H1 = 1 - 1 = 0

Or, the boundary of a boundary is zero.

Well, what does all this gain us? Where might we be going? The beauty of this branch of math is that higher dimensionality can be represented with simpler, lower dimensional configurations.   Consider now the ordered tetrahedron (vertices ordered by number) shown below:

. Call the ordering '1234'. In terms of signage (sign rules - e.g. for (+) or (-) being followed, it's important to note that a segment (1 2) induces orientation (+1) in the associated complex, but a segment (2 1) induces (-1). This is how differing segments acquire negative signage in the complex.    Note the segments here play the same role as the a,    b,  d,    g
etc. in the previous example of the 2D torus.

The boundary of the tetrahedron, in terms of its four faces can than be written:

- (1 2 3) - (1 3 4) + (1 2 4) + (1 3 4)

Leading to the result that the boundary of a boundary is zero, or  D D = 0

By definition, the factor group: H_r = Z_r/ B_r

Then, in our case, B_r = B_2 (for the boundary) while:

H_2 = Z_2


Z_2 = a(1 2 3) + b(1 2 4) + c (1 3 4) + d( 2 3 4)


For the 2D torus we found:  dim B1 = dim Z1 - dim H1 = 1 - 1 = 0

Or the boundary of a boundary is 0.  This was based on knowing the
number of branches b and nodes n, where:

dim Z1 = [b + 1 - n] for any connected complex

Show that the same rule applies to the tetrahedron.

Can A Pathological Liar "President" Meet The Lowest Standard For MLK Day?

The radical MLK we need todayRelated image

"I am the least racist person you will ever interview!"

So barked Donnie Dotard in a lying pushback (from his "shithole" comments) from Palm Beach yesterday.  Of course this was merely one of his many thousands of lies. This slime ball lies as naturally as he breathes, so no,  we can't trust anything he says. The new political axiom for those with IQs over room temperature digits is that whatever Trump belches out of his pie hole, just assume it's a lie. You will be correct 99.999 % of the time.  Ditto with his tweets in the wake of his "shithole" comment, i.e. that he never uttered such a word. He used "strong language" but not that reported by the press or Sen. Dick Durbin.  Yeah, whatever. Save it for you deplorables.

Who are we to believe here, the most pathological liar ever to hold public office, or Sen. Dick Durbin, a respected Dem Senator present in the room?   Would Sen. Durbin have any reason to make this up? Of course not! Especially when Sen. Lindsey Graham admitted he had to call out Trump on his outburst. (Though he refused to make a public statement afterward.)   We certainly can't believe the two lying slime Repukes in the same room (Tom Cotton and David Perdue) , now trying to cover for Trump.  These congenital asswipes have since insisted Durbin's take was a "gross misrepresentation" of Dotard's comment.

And I suppose these two protectors of the chief racist would also claim - like Trump already has - that the infamous Hollywood Reporter tape where he is caught saying "You can grab 'em by the pussy!" featured merely edited words put into his mouth. How stupid do these cracker yahoos think we are... or the American people?

Anyway, those of us with eyes to see and possessing some semblance of a moral compass, know damned well that Donald Trump is a racist - and not a closet variety either.  This was the character - a two bit chiseling Queens' real estate con man - who was sued by the Nixon administration for refusing to rent to African - Americans. He was also the turd who peddled the racist narrative that the first black President wasn't really an American, i.e. he lacked a valid birth certificate. In addition, only this past summer he praised "some very fine people" amongst the Nazi swine marching in Charlottesville.

So again, it doesn't take a Mensa level IQ of 135 to grasp that if a guy acts like a racist, talks like one and especially praises racists - who in turn praise him- he IS a racist. So Rep. John Lewis was absolutely spot on when he didn't mince words in calling out Trump as a racist in a Sunday morning talk show - for his "shithole country" remark and his other remarks, actions.

That brings us to MLK Day, today, as we learned the Reverend King's daughter - Rev. Bernice King - will be the commemorative speaker at the service honoring her father at Ebenezer Baptist Church.  We also learned that she proposed a new minimum standard for our resident Racist in chief, saying ('King Holiday Arrives Amid Trump Firestorm', Denver Post, Jan. 14, p. 13A):

"This is what I would like President Trump to do: Don't let the King Holiday find you using your Twitter account in an inappropriate way. If he can dare to do that, I would be proud on the day that our president honored Dr. King by not doing things that are offensive."

Process that incredibly low, baseline standard of decency and respect for just a minute. Then seriously ask yourself whether the racist filth occupying the highest office in the land could meet it.  The answer to the question arrived barely a couple hours earlier when Ed Krassenstein tweeted:

"On a day when the rest of the world is quoting Martin Luther King Jr., President Trump uses his first tweet of the day to quote himself, emphasize "AMERICA FIRST", which is actually a slogan derived from the KKK."

As a further note, I plan to devote an entire post to the Nazi-racist "America First" movement that emerged in the 1930s, especially for those whose 20th century American history may be deficient.

As for the Rev. King's son, Martin Luther King III, who told the AP over the weekend:

"I would like to believe that the president's intentions are not to be divisive, but much of what he says seems or feels to be divisive".

I would say go with your own eyes and ears. You will then see this character is exactly the maggot he appears to the rest of us, the sane segment of the populace.

King III went on to say:

"It would be wonderful to have a president who talked about bringing America together, and exhibited that."

Yes, it would be wonderful to have a president committed to unity instead of division. But alas, it is not the despicable POS we have in the White House currently.  Maybe that wonderful day will arrive when we finally sweep the present detritus out, lock, stock and barrel with his whole cabal.

See also:




"Let’s be honest and forthright. Racism is simply the belief that race is an inherent and determining factor in a person’s or a people’s character and capabilities, rendering some inferior and others superior. These beliefs are racial prejudices.

The history of America is one in which white people used racism and white supremacy to develop a racial caste system that advantaged them and disadvantaged others. ....Understanding this, it is not a stretch to understand that Donald Trump’s words and deeds over the course of his life have demonstrated a pattern of expressing racial prejudices that demean people who are black and brown and that play to the racial hostilities of other white people.

It is not a stretch to say that Trump is racist. It’s not a stretch to say that he is a white supremacist. It’s not a stretch to say that Trump is a bigot. Those are just facts, supported by the proof of the words that keep coming directly from him. And, when he is called out for his racism, his response is never to ameliorate his rhetoric, but to double down on it."

Friday, January 12, 2018

Selected Questions- Answers From All Experts Astronomy Forum (Yellow stars and heated 'yellow' bars)

Question -

I think a yellowish star would have a different temperature from a yellowish heated bar. Could you explain in detail the  difference?


The problem in the question, is that you have not referenced WHICH part of
the star you're comparing to the heated bar.

A star, like an onion, has different layers at different temperatures. The
inner core (e.g. for a yellow star like the Sun) is at temperatures of millions

of degrees.

Such high temperatures are attained by virtue of nuclear reactions in the
star's core. The radiation, energy produced then flows outward to the

The surface (or photosphere) of the star is therefore much cooler, at
temperatures around 11,000 F (for the Sun, a typical yellow dwarf star).

Assuming that you are talking about the surface of the yellow star, the
difference is clearly that the yellow bar could not attain the same
temperature, before melting. The melting point of steel, for example, is
at 2500F.

A star's surface- at the SAME temperature- would result in a red star, not

How can this be explained?

Basically, it's a result of the fact that star and metal (bar) are
composed of two different types of materials.

The metal bar is a solid. (E.g. made of steel, or iron) As it is heated,
its electrons become agitated and move around, vibrate - however, they are
limited in where they can go. (Up until the metal melts).

The star, by contrast, is in a state called plasma. This is a gas that has
lost one or more electrons. Once this state emerges, the star can continue
gaining temperature way past the maximum allowed for the solid, metal bar.
(Helped by the fact its ions (atoms that've lost electrons) are not
constrained in their motions).

At the same time, the loss of electrons by a plasma means its electrical
conductivity increases. It can also form magnetic fields, because of its
ability to conduct electric currents.  These currents - as well as the
associated magnetic energy - can also convert into more heat energy- and
also power flares.

All these aspects help explain why a yellow star is fundamentally
different from a heated yellow bar. (For example, no matter how much you
heat the bar- short of its melting point- it won't produce magnetic fields
like moving fluid in a heated plasma will!)

Bottom line is that the plasma nature of the star allows more heat to be
absorbed by it, and brought to its surface, than the atoms of a heated bar

Lastly, one needs to bear in mind that the yellow bar radiates at that
particular energy range alone. The yellow star radiates at all wavelengths
of the EM (electromagnetic) spectrum, including x-rays, UV rays, radio
waves  and so on.

But it radiates its peak (of what is called the 'black body curve' or
Planck curve) in the yellow region of the visible light spectrum. In
effect, stars of whatever color actually radiate at all wavelengths but
at different intensities for each. It is the peak of the radiated energy
that defines the color of the star we see.

Oprah Winfrey Will Not Rescue Us From Trump - Forget #Oprah2020!

Oprah Winfrey in her Golden Globes speech received kudos. But that doesn't translate into being a viable Dem candidate for the presidency - especially vs. Drumpf.

In the wake of Oprah Winfrey's stirring Golden Globe speech, I had to howl with laughter at all the peanut- brained libs and Democrats who suddenly think this celebrity is the presidential answer for 2020. Please give me a freaking break. I refuse to believe that Americans - even on the Left- can be this stupid.  The saving grace is that at least Oprah herself appears to realize this political brain fart is simply that - and no more. A nice entertaining fantasy but not one to take seriously or use as a basis to mount a presidential primary campaign. Or to use the words of one Politico reporter three nights ago (appearing on Brian Williams MSNBC show):

"Why when you have $2.8 billion would you do that? Why put yourself in for all the hate, the bigotry and ugliness when you don't have to?"

He has a point. Why indeed? Because, believe me, giving an eloquent and positively resonant 15- minute speech to fellow celebs is not like slogging through dozens of states in primaries (what 2004 candidate Howard Dean called a "meat grinder"), or squaring off in debates against a lying, hateful maggot like Trump. (Which experience Jess McIntosh compared-  in the fall of 2016 - to "facing a wild monkey with a gun")

Or, getting into twitter wars with this this degenerate who - according to one recent WaPo report - has delivered more than 2,000 lies since his inauguration.  Will Oprah really be ready to tangle with this pig via tweets?  Will she be ready for the lies, slander and slurs of Right wing TV and radio? Or will she take the "high road" and ignore the haters, as they pile slander on slander, lie on lie?

One gets a taste of what sort of attacks Winfrey may face just by checking out some Right blogs, such as one wherein the blogger writes:

"We then have…a 2013 interview with the BBC, when Winfrey said that entire (older) generations “just have to die” to cure the problem of racism....Uhhh…okay, bitch…Sieg Heil!…of course, you ain’t no spring chicken either…so perhaps ya wanna include yourself in that ‘mass genocide’!...That said, OW would have a tough time explaining a lot of things in her past – especially during the debates."

So will Oprah truly be ready to get down in the mud to face off against the Right's attack machine? I doubt it. She's too refined and uplifting, positive in her mental outlook to take on the psyche of a political mud wrestler - even for presidential aspirations or putatively saving the country. While some Winfrey backers have tried to argue she could do it because "she started HARPO productions on her own", that is not the same thing as being ambushed every day from the Repuke slime machine.

And what about the racism that will be certain to come down on her like it did on Obama, even more because she's a black woman aspiring to the White House?  I still have the letter that appeared in US Today on Tuesday, written by a Mark West:

"Yeah, I'm sure it was so hard for Oprah Winfrey to give a speech in front of a few hundred supporters, all of whom are desperate for their next President Obama.  The left loses its mind over anyone who can deliver a good speech. Why not just pick the next TED X speaker as their leader?"

Well, not all of us do. I also want to see what political heft, experience and savvy the person has, also whether that candidate has the capacity to engage in the political equivalent of hand to hand combat. Bernie Sanders absolutely has it, so did Hillary Clinton, as does Elizabeth Warren. Oprah? I don't buy it.  What this whole response shows me is that the Oprah backers for 2020 have the political sense and intelligence of infants, and ultimately can't be trusted in their choices.  As smirkingchimp blogger  Sonali Kohatkar put it ('What  #Oprah2020 Says About The State Of  U.S. Politics''):

"It says a great deal about the depths to which American politics has fallen that we are now seriously considering the presidential candidacy of Oprah Winfrey. The internationally famous television talk show star turned media mogul could easily win a global popularity contest, and in a world where Donald Trump is the president of the U.S., such accomplishment appears to be qualification enough to lead the world’s economic superpower. But should it be? Winfrey herself is not to be blamed for this absurd status quo—her brief speech at the Golden Globes was powerful, moving and necessary. The blame lies with us, with our political leaders, with our media and with the pop-culture-obsessed society we’ve created."

As Ms. Kohatkar goes on to ask:

"The fact that #Oprah2020 is so popular says much more about us than it does about her. Have we really given up on the idea of a political candidate who is both politically experienced and can articulate a progressive vision for the nation? Is that really so much to ask in a nation of more than 300 million people?"

Evidently it is because too many don't take politics seriously in this country. The Millennials - who've turned out the least to vote (especially in midterms) - think they can get all their news from late night comedy shows.  The older lot have few insights other than whatever they garner from talk shows, and they do not read in depth. Too many have zero experience in deep politics research.  I daresay most can't even distinguish liberalism from neoliberalism. If that's the case most of these Oprah backers wouldn't even know that  "Winfrey possesses many of the qualities that Hillary Clinton did—her allegiance to Wall Street and her concept of neoliberal capitalism is certainly as strong as Hillary’s".  Ouch! 

The main benefits of a Winfrey run? She has an especially strong connection to women and non-whites and with her personal fortune she could likely finance her own campaign. The downside? She'd lose white men by an estimated 2 to 1 ratio and perhaps even more if they latch on to Trump as a pseudo-male defensive mechanism like they did against Hillary last year.  As for the poor whites that went by 61 percent for Dotard, I can't see them bailing on the Dotard and now going for a black female Obama.  Other worrisome aspects as Sonali Kohatkar notes:

"Winfrey’s political positions are largely indiscernible, probably by design. In fact, the idea to draft her to run for president originated from a lifelong Republican from Kansas who says he did not vote for Trump. Bizarrely, in 1999 Trump himself  touted Winfrey as his first choice for vice president if he were to ever run."

I believe these facts need to be known before too many lose whatever common sense they have left and push for a Winfrey run. I believe such an effort would be self-defeating and leave us little better than we were left on Nov. 8th last year.  Hell, when you even have arch Neocon Bill Kristol backing her in a tweet you ought to know you've jumped through the looking glass. According to Kristol:

"Sounder on economics than Bernie Sanders, understands Middle America better than Elizabeth Warren, less touchy-feely than Joe Biden, more pleasant than Andrew Cuomo, more charismatic than John Hickenlooper."

Except she isn't "sounder on economics" than Sanders. She's just cloaked her positions in indiscernible mush which she'd be forced to explicate in any primary debates. Bernie, for one,  would rip her to shreds once her actual, detailed positions became known. As for "less touchy feely than Joe Biden", I doubt it. Has Kristol ever actually watched an Oprah Winfrey show?

Finally, I agree 100 percent with Kohatkar's take:

"We deserve better. And, we can get better than Winfrey if we demand it in the wake of Trump’s failure. The administration is on the defensive, thanks in large part to Wolff’s claims but also because of relentless activism by ordinary Americans and, simply, because of Trump and his team’s sheer ineptness."

The best contribution Oprah Winfrey can make for the 2020 campaign? Plow her money into supporting actual Democratic candidates who have experience and stand a chance against Trump. Meanwhile, let her keep her feet on the ground and refuse to let addle- brained nincompoops push her into something she might later regret.  As the Politico reporter put it, "Why put yourself in for all that ugliness when you don't have to?"  Stay instead in the background and contribute support!

To read Sonali's full piece go to:

Thursday, January 11, 2018

How Long Before We Get Rid Of This Shithole Presidency?

With his outburst about "shithole countries" Trump has proven himself every bit the same vermin racist refuse as Adolf Hitler.

"This afternoon, the man who was elevated to the presidency of the United States, Trump - who was sued by the Nixon administration in the 1970s for refusing to rent apartments to African-Americans, who rose to political prominence by questioning whether the first black president was really an American, who kicked off his campaign by calling Mexicans rapists, and who - as President - said there were good people among the Nazis who marched at Charlottesville and killed a woman by ramming her with their car, that man - Donald Trump - in a meeting in the Oval Office, inside he White House, did the least surprising thing in his presidency to dateLeast surprising but an embarrassment to all Americans."   Joy Reid, lead in comment on 'All In'

A number of those appearing on the air tonight including Charlie Sykes ('How The Right Lost Its Mind'),  Rev. Al Sharpton, Fmr. Sen. Barbara Boxer, Fmr. Watergate attorney Jill Wine-Banks and others have noted how Trump's latest outburst from the Oval Office has defiled us all as a nation. In this latest iteration - proving again all of author Michael Wolff's claims are true, Dotard went on a rampage barking, “Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?” 

This was immediately after being presented with a proposal to restore protections  for immigrants from countries such as El Salvador, Haiti and African nations as part of a bipartisan immigration deal.   This piece of shit pretender president then had the temerity to demand to know why the U.S. would accept immigrants from these nations and not Norway instead. (He had met its prime minister the day before). Given Norway is something like 99% Caucasoid it doesn't take extreme Sherlock Holmes' investigative insights to see this was a blatant racist statement. That it came from the person occupying the highest office in the land is a bloody travesty and further calls for his expeditious removal.

As Barbara Boxer put it: "Donald Trump has insulted every American. He has insulted my home state where we have ethnic harmony and all live together. So he is anti-American.."

Other voices noted how Trump has defiled the office of the presidency itself- which is now regarded by many as no better than a department of shit processing -  but also insults we the People. Never mind some of whom are responsible for putting this degenerate maniac into the nation's highest office.  I won't repeat all the ways Donald Drumpf  has defiled everything we as a People stand for, only again revisit how this latest episode has led us to a new national nadir.  But hopefully not a new national normal to which we become inured.

Most of those who commented on the prime time MSNBC talk shows tonight ('All In', Rachel Maddow, The Last Word),  agree to a person that Trump was playing largely to his revolting base who put him into office, e.g. this lot:
Image may contain: one or more peopleImage may contain: one or more people and outdoor
As CBC's Jason Johnson put it:

"It speaks to what we've seen before. There are people in his administration that are saying yes, there are racist White Nationalists in America that are happy to hear this. That Donald Trump wants to create a white nationalist state, to make sure non-white people do not have a role in this country."

Adding that Dotard's statement is also tantamount to a national security threat that indirectly gives aid and comfort to terrorists. So all those dissed black and brown people from the "shithole countries" may now be driven to find succor and support elsewhere.  But not in Trump's KKK dominated Amerikka. (Which is the version he truly wants to "make great")

In other words, we saw Dotard echoing pretty much the same chords that resounded from those who  marched in Charlottesville in August and who Trump referred to as "some very fine people".  We really shouldn't be surprised at his outburst today, however. Recall two days ago he delivered a trained puppet performance in the White House on the DACA and immigration law progress to try and make people believe he was a savvy, serious president. This is as opposed to the derelict loon depicted in Michael Wolff's book, 'Fire And Fury'.

So, Trump's minders (like Gen. John Kelly)  got him relatively under control before the meet - including with Democrats like Dianne Feinstein - so he appeared halfway sane. But as he bloviated about getting immigration reform done and even agreeing with Sen. Feinstein at times ("Yes we can work with that") his Right wing media pundit fans at Trump TV were becoming unhinged.  He was going to agree with Dianne Feinstein? What is he thinking? Watch, for example, Ann Coulter's response below, referring to "the lowest day of Trump's presidency":

As she put it, "What he did was fulfill every description of him in the Michael Wolff book. He doesn't listen, has no command of the facts, always repeats the last thing he hears. "

Proving again that even a stopped clock is right twice each day.  But the point here is that Trump clearly was enraged that the Right's pundit class were chastising him so decided to go full tilt relive Charlottesville to appease them. Hence, the almost exact opposite response and unhinged, disgusting explosion today about "shithole countries".

When I heard this scatalogical reference actually repeated by Joy Reid, standing in for Chris Hayes on All In, it made me wonder why we can't somehow just terminate this malignant, cancerous  shithole presidency, with a shithead president. How much longer do we have to put up with his bullshit, bigoted rhetoric and actions now poisoning the nation beyond the White House itself? 

Forget the 25th Amendment to the Constitution.  That won't work,  as a former aide to Sen. Birch Bayh (the architect of the amendment) pointed out two nights ago.  Why won't it work? Because even if - by some remote probability Trump's cabinet tries to invoke it (especially after this latest episode), Trump himself could file a "dispute". This would then require a two-thirds vote for removal in BOTH Houses of Congress.

That leaves impeachment (by the House Of Representative) as the only legal option to remove him,  followed by actual indictment by the Senate for "high crimes and misdemeanors".  That, however, would necessitate the Dems taking back both House and Senate in the fall and by margins sufficient to accomplish both.  While I do believe impeachment might get done -  I am doubtful we can get the indictment achieved without a literal Civil War.   Why? Because even by the impeachment phase, Trump's deplorable base of misfits would be talking tripe about the "Left"  trying to forcibly remove their asshole who was "duly elected".   (Recall also these loopy assholes sincerely believe WE are the ones who are "crazy" - merely because we possess a moral compass capable of reacting to the maggot's offenses and lies.)

In other words, they'd accuse us of using impeachment and indictment to achieve what we could not at the ballot box. But of course they miss the point. Recall that many of us after Trump was sworn in believed somehow he'd evolve from the low grade carny barker and become "presidential". That he'd finally put a "book end" to  the campaign and all the racial slurs barked out in the heat of it.  But that never occurred. He's still the half-cocked, dyspeptic, hateful bigot and wrecker of norms and national comity that he was over 2015-2016,

The issue being that he never did morph into a president, though he was given every opportunity. He continued to use the office to increase the level of coarseness and incivility in our dialogue as well as the nation's  divisions. He even brought disrepute on our country with his other stunts, including jousting with Kim Jung In over the size of nuclear buttons and declaring the Nazis marching at Charlottesville "some very fine people". Oh, and even backing a sex offender (Roy Moore) for an Alabama Senate seat - fortunately won by Doug Jones, a Dem.

As for DACA and immigration reform, now coming up to a deadline on Jan. 19th (otherwise a government shutdown), I say the Dems must make NO deal. Not if this piece of shit refuse insists on a border  wall being included as part of it. Nope, let the shutdown occur before accepting that raw turd from this fucking asshole.  Do not blink, do not give this degenerate swine even a partial victory. 

Oh, and one more thing: If Donnie Dotard and his toxic party insist - as they now claim - of making low income people work to get access to Medicaid- tell them to go screw themselves. As for action, make sure unfettered access to Medicaid without any strings is part of any spending deal - now or in the future. 

See also:

‘Unkind, divisive, elitist’: international outcry over Trump’s remark


Radium In Tap Water Of Half Of All Americans: Do You Even Know?

It's been bad enough learning about the ubiquity of lead in our drinking water and how more is added each year because of  antiquated lead pipes. (Another aspect of our crumbling infrastructure which includes bridges, sewer systems and airports.)    The lead pipe issue came to the fore in a 2016 WSJ piece ('Lead Pipes Vex Many Cities').. 

The piece noted that Flint alone "has no choice but to spend an estimated $55 million to replace all the lead pipes leading to homes".

But adding:

"Now, utility officials across the country are calculating the cost of getting rid of their lead water lines, a task that could take years, disrupt tens of millions of homes and businesses and require billions of dollars in spending".

The culprit? A cheapo chlorine derivative called chloramine used to disinfect city water supplies. The problem is the stuff also causes lead to leach out of aging pipes and pollute water supplies. Chloramines (one form of which is what was used to purify the water in Flint) are basically ammonia and chlorine compounds that are far more corrosive to lead pipes (which are all across the country) than chlorine. The bottom line, as the article also notes, is the EPA estimates there are "10 million lead service lines that link water mains in streets to buildings"

The American Water Works Association, which represents 4,000 water utilities, estimates the average cost for each replacement line at about $5,000 - for a total of $32. 5 billion (based on a lower limit of 6.5 million lines to replace).

This issue, make no mistake - is a man-made problem- that will take a lot of money to fix but in the end can be resolved.

But now we learn that a new source of water contamination is wholly natural:  radium.  Why important? Because it is a known carcinogen especially for bone cancer (osteosarcoma).   The report on CBS this a.m. noted the finding from the Environmental Working Group that 158 waster systems in 27 states have reported radium in concentrations that exceed the Federal legal limit, that is 5 pCi/ L. 

For those unfamiliar with radiological units, the pCi/L  denoted pico Curie per liter.  Given radium decays at a rate of about 2.2 trillion disintegrations per minute, a picocurie  represents 2.2 disintegrations per minute.. This is given that a picocurie is one trillionth of a curie..

What you really need to process here are the words from the EWG:

Drinking water for more than 170 million Americans in all 50 states contains radioactive elements that may increase the risk of cancer, according to an EWG investigation released today.
Radiation in tap water is a serious health threat, especially during pregnancy, and the Environmental Protection Agency’s legal limits for the most widespread radioactive elements are more than 40 years old. But President Trump’s nominee to be the White House environment czar rejects the need for water systems to comply even with those inadequate standards.
The most common radioactive element in American tap water is radium. EWG’s analysis of test data from almost 50,000 public water systems found that from 2010 to 2015, more than 22,000 utilities in all 50 states reported radium in the treated water delivered to customers’ taps. EWG’s interactive map shows the utilities with radium contamination and how many people were affected.
Worse, Trump’s nominee (Kathleen Hartnett White) to head the White House Council on Environmental Quality,(CWQ) admitted a 2011 investigation by Houston’s KHOU-TV that if utility tests found radiation levels over the EPA limit, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality would subtract the test’s margin of error to make it appear the water met federal standards. In some cases, this meant that Texans whose tap water posed the extraordinarily elevated lifetime cancer risk of 1 in 400 were not informed of the danger. . The TX city of Brady turns out to be the poster child for his mishandling of risk with tap water that exceeds the federal level of radium by 4.25 pCI/L.  As the CBS report noted no one in their right mind in this Texas city uses anything but bottled water.
These citizens have their heads screwed on straight since who wants to tempt fate ingesting this stuff,  risking bone cancer or unwanted mutations in a soon to be born child?  It also leaves open the question of what other Texas communities know, or don't. This is given the EWG report found more than 3,500 utilities in the state - serving 22 million (or 80 percent of the population) reported finding radium in tap water.
In Brady, TX, meanwhile, it's been found that radium levels in some wells is nine times higher than it should be.  The mayor,  Tony Groves,  admitted to CBS' correspondent Anna Warner this morning the city faces a tough problem: how to get enough money to build a new water treatment plant.  This will cost in excess of $20 million. It's a sure bet here - knowing Texas and its conservative legislature - the good citizens of Brady will be told to suck salt. There is no way they will process the cost-to benefit for 5,500 residents as being in favor of even offering loan money.
Let us also note the EWG operates outside the domain of the corrupt Trump EPA and its toadies. Thus, it has done its own reporting and research - given the importance of water quality in our lives-- and manages its own website.  One of its mission is to enable Americans to use the EWG website to learn exactly what contaminants are present in their drinking water.  To facilitate that I have provided the EWG link below where you can simply punch in y9ur zip code to learn what's in you water:
At the bottom of the field you also have the option of putting in your email to get the guide to safe drinking water and protecting yourself. Don't count on the money grubbing Trump parasites to protect you! All they want is to protect their own wealth and line their pockets out of your misery and illness.
As noted by EWG's Alex Formuzis this morning on CBS, all of this is something the EPA ought to have done. He went on to say:
"The EPA and the Safe Drinking Water Act have largely failed the American people."
Indeed, and we've seen the failure of the latter Act especially after fracked water was listed as being acceptable. As a 2014 Denver Post report noted,  some 716,982 gallons of the petroleum chemicals spilled during the past decade have stayed in the ground after the initial cleanup. This has contaminated soil, sometimes spreading into groundwater. Recall that a House Energy and Commerce Committee in 2010-11, report found that fourteen of the nation's most active hydraulic fracturing companies used 866 million gallons of chemical fracturing products, and more than 650 of the chemicals named in the report were known carcinogens, supposedly regulated under the Safe Drinking Water Act.
Among the toxic fracking chemicals and their adverse effects uncovered by the inquiry:

-Benzene: a powerful bone-marrow poison (aplastic anemia) associated with leukemia, breast and uterine cancer

- Styrene, which may cause eye and mucous membrane irritation, neurotoxic effects in the central and peripheral nervous systems.

- Toluene, which may cause muscular incoordination, tremors, hearing loss, dizziness, vertigo, emotional instability and delusions, liver and kidney damage, and anemia.

- Xylene, with cancer-causing (mainly in the kidneys, liver) and neurotoxic effects, as well as reproductive abnormalities.
But don't look for the Trump government to protect you or to even make available the medical care you will need once you get all the cancers from the contaminants - whether fracked chemicals, lead or radium-  in our water. Nope. It's all too expensive, and these glorified rats value their own wealth over your health.