Tonight’s Moon at near closest approach
For my fellow photogs-That moon was so bright-Iso 100. F5.6 1/500th shutter. 400mm lens on a crop sensor (640mm actual) and cropped in further. I did push clarity a bit and backed off on contrast. Exposure compensation- 5 1/2 stops down!
Tonight’s Moon at near closest approach
Amazon has formally petitioned the FAA for permission to test its delivery drones near Seattle as part of its highly publicized push to airlift goods to people’s homes in 30 minutes or less.
The controversial program called “Prime Air” is the brainchild of Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos and would use small, unmanned aircraft to zoom purchases to doorsteps. But the drive has generated bitter debate over safety and privacy issues.
The retail giant is currently conducting indoor drone tests. It wants to conduct outdoor runs in the Seattle area, where its research and development labs are located. The company is headquartered in Washington.
Atlantic City’s crumbling casino market disintegrated even further Saturday as the owners of the Trump Plaza casino said they expect to shut down in mid-September.
Trump Entertainment Resorts told The Associated Press that no final decision has been made on the Boardwalk casino. But the company said it expects the casino to close its doors Sept. 16.
Notices warning employees of the expected closing will go out to the casino’s 1,000-plus employees Monday.
If Trump Plaza closes, Atlantic City could lose a third of its casinos and a quarter of its casino workforce in less than nine months. The Atlantic Club closed in January, the Showboat is closing next month and Revel might do likewise if a buyer can’t be found in bankruptcy court.
From a speech by Hobby Lobby President Steve Green:
“We’re working on 4 year public school bible curriculum. The first year will be a summary of all three of those section. It’s history, it’s impact and it’s story. Then the next 3 years is going in depth in each of those — a year for the history, a year for the impact and a year for the story — in some order… The nation is in danger because of its ignorance of what God has taught… . If we don’t know it, our future is going to be very scary … We were looking - uh- we — we were talking - - discussed a college curriculum but it’s no — we really want to get — be into the - um - high school level because we want to reach as many as possible. Someday, I would argue, it should be mandated. Here’s a book that’s impacted our world, unlike any other, and you’re not gonna teach it? There’s — there’s something wrong with that”.
The section above begins at about 4:30 in the video.
All “curriculum” must meet state and national standards before it is approved. Oftentimes this is determined by the Texas State Board of Education merely because they have the most schools of any state and public education publishers pander to the highest bidder - Texas. In this case, however, Hobby Lobby is starting just a tad north - in Mustang, Oklahoma. The Mustang School District, headed by Superintendent Sean McDaniel, have decided to go ahead and give the thumbs up to the Bible Curriculum.
You see, it meets the standard. It is not a mandatory class (yet) - and it is opt-in, not opt-out (for now)….except it hasn’t even been written (yet)!
How is it possible that a school board can accept a curriculum that doesn’t exist, on a clearly biased religious subject that may or may not violate the establishment clause, in a system that is paid for with our tax dollars? Technically, they can’t. So why have they?
What could possibly go wrong?
If you’re interested in a look at mainstream, moderate Islam this resource looks like a good one. I haven’t scoured every page on their site, but I see some familiar faces on the homepage and as authors of some of the articles. The few articles that quickly I scanned seemed engaging and well balanced.
Additionally, there are resources on safeguarding (good conduct), chaplaincy, immigration, civic leadership and interfaith outreach. The primary target audience appears to be imams, but I think most of the info is sufficiently well-explained for even a non-Muslim layperson to grasp the gist of it. If you run across something you don’t understand, you can always ask me and I’ll do my best to explain, provided it’s something I’m sure I have a correct basic understanding of.
One last thing: I’m posting this here so you can bookmark it and give it to the next person who makes the incorrect assertion that Muslims never speak out against extremism and/or terrorism. We do, but too often no one listens.
Update: If you want to skip the unity message and go straight to the part condemning ISIS in particular and terrorism in general, as well as briefly discussing the Caliphate, it starts at 2:45.
Over 100 British imams have come together to emphasise the importance of unity in the UK and to decree ISIS as an illegitimate, vicious group who do not represent Islam in any way.
“We are Muslims united against ISIS, against terrorism, against atrocity, against pain and suffering.”
Where did all the fine art money he made go?
George Zimmerman divorce records: I’ve got no home, no job and spend $100 a month on vacations
by Rene Stutzman
SANFORD - George Zimmerman has no job, no home, no income but spends $100 a month on vacations and $200 a month on psychological counseling, according to a financial affidavit he recently filed in his divorce case.
Zimmerman, 30, is the former Neighborhood Watch volunteer acquitted last year of murdering Trayvon Martin, an unarmed black 17-year-old.
Immediately after the shooting - Feb. 26, 2012 - he quit his job and went into hiding with his wife, Shellie, but two months after his acquittal, she filed for divorce, saying he had taken to the road and would not tell her where he was and what he was doing.
As part of the divorce case, Zimmerman filed a financial affidavit last week, spelling out his income, assets and debts.
According to it, he spends $3,304 a month, despite having no income.
He listed his total assets at $14,000 - most of that is his 2008 Honda pickup. His debts total $2.5 million, most of that is money he owes criminal defense attorneys Mark O’Mara and Don West.
According to his paperwork, Zimmerman has no job, pays nothing for rent or a mortgage and has no health insurance.
He spends $350 a month for medical care plus $200 a month for psychological, psychiatric or mental health counseling.
He also spends $100 a month on vacations, he wrote.
Zimmerman’s legal defense fund, which raised more than $400,000, now has a balance of $300, according to the affidavit.
It is not clear what happened to any money he earned from the sale of a painting on eBay in December. The winning bid was $100,000. There is no mention of it in his affidavit.
His banking account has $650, he reported.
More at Orlando Sentinel
Charlie Haden, one of the most influential bassists in the history of jazz, died on Friday in Los Angeles. He was 76.
His death was confirmed by Ruth Cameron, his wife of 30 years. For the last several years he had been struggling with the degenerative effects of post-polio syndrome, related to the polio he contracted in his youth.
Attacks on food stamps for being full of waste and fraud are fairly commonplace. “Food Stamp Program Riddled with Waste and Fraud,” one Heartland Institute post declared. “This program is known for waste, fraud and abuse,” according to Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-MO).
The biggest problem with this critique is that it’s completely factually incorrect. Food stamp “fraud” (which mainly means trading food stamps for cash, a totally reasonable activity that in a just world would be 100 percent legal without any fees attached to it) is very rare, with a fraud rate of only 1 percent.
As for waste, the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities’ Dottie Rosenbaum has a new report explaining that the rate of overpayment and underpayment (that is, the payment of either too much or too little in benefits to participants, including any payments to ineligible people) have both been falling considerably in recent years:
Matthew Sandusky, Jerry Sandusky’s Adopted Son, Tells the Untold Story of His Childhood Sexual Abuse —Tune in for this special episode of Oprah Prime on Thursday, July 17, at 9 p.m. ET/PT.
According to philly.com, this will be the first television interview given by any of Sandusky’s six adopted children since his 2012 sex-abuse charges. According to the website, Matt Sandusky, 35, met Jerry and his wife, Dottie, when he was a boy attending their Second Mile charity. A few years later he would move in with the family and would be formally adopted when he was 18.
Matt Sandusky tells Oprah that his adoptive father had a ritual of “grooming, methodical control and manipulation,” according to Oprah’s website.
“At bedtime, his ritual began,” Sandusky tells Oprah in a brief video clip of the episode.