These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. ~~~ Thomas Paine, 1776
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Blog Notes


I'm still learning as we go here.
I don't know about you, but that old Winter Patriot look sure makes me feel at home.
I haven't figured out how to get that deep blue background, but at least I've got the blog post colors going...
Here are some instructions for doing it so anyone who wants can join in.

Below your post is an option for 'input format' - you may need to set it to 'smilies' to get certain things to work (some of the smilies)

At the top of your post, paste the table tag as follows:

Note: You do NOT need the < br /> tag, I just can't figure out why it's showing up or how to get rid of it! If you do include it, it won't really hurt anything; just will add an extra line break.

Then to begin a green table; paste this:

Wherever you want the green table to end, paste;

and paste the same at the very bottom of your post so you don't end up with a run-on table wink

hope this is helpful.
P.S. you can now shrink your sig with font tags like this:

And I've enabled avatars, go to "My Account" and click on edit to upload an avatar image rockin out

Geneticist Creating Life Form


This is interesting ... made me go "hmmmm" ... & wonder if this is a good thing or a scary thing.


Famed geneticist creating life form that turns CO2 to fuel
Thu Feb 28, 3:56 PM ET

MONTEREY, California (AFP) - A scientist who mapped his genome and the genetic diversity of the oceans said Thursday he is creating a life form that feeds on climate-ruining carbon dioxide to produce fuel.

Geneticist Craig Venter disclosed his potentially world-changing "fourth-generation fuel" project at an elite Technology, Entertainment and Design conference in Monterey, California.

"We have modest goals of replacing the whole petrochemical industry and becoming a major source of energy," Venter told an audience that included global warming fighter Al Gore and Google co-founder Larry Page.

"We think we will have fourth-generation fuels in about 18 months, with CO2 as the fuel stock."


~~Click here for More~~

posted by Kira, i copied it over here (njt)

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South America

South America

South America

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Drums of War II


Trouble to the south... another copy / paste; but hey, i'm trying and it's a start!

Boston.com

Chávez sends troops, tanks to Venezuela's border with Colombia
Strike against rebel commander 'cowardly,' he says
By Juan Forero
Washington Post / March 3, 2008

Calling a Colombian military strike against a guerrilla commander "a cowardly assassination," President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela yesterday closed his country's embassy in Colombia and ordered tanks, planes, and thousands of troops to the 1,300-mile border the two countries share.

President Rafael Correa of Ecuador also recalled his ambassador to Colombia in protest over the assault just inside Ecuador on Saturday that killed 17 guerrillas, including Luis Edgar Devia, a top commander in the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC. Ecuador and Venezuela are allies.

Speaking on his nationally televised show, Chávez lauded Devia and ordered his defense minister to mobilize troops to Venezuela's western border. He also blamed the United States, a staunch ally of President Álvaro Uribe of Colombia, for fueling the conflict in Colombia.

"Move 10 battalions to the Colombian frontier immediately, tank battalions, military aviation," Chávez said. "We are not going to permit the North American empire, which is the ruler, to allow his lapdog, President Uribe and the Colombian oligarchy, to divide or weaken us. We will not permit it."

Another Venezuelan ally, Nicaragua, which is disputing Colombian sovereignty over two islands in the Caribbean, also criticized Colombia. Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega, a Cold War foe of the United States, called the strike against Devia "an act of total provocation" that reduces the chances of peacefully settling Colombia's conflict.

Although celebrated in Colombia as a major blow against the FARC, the attack has triggered the most serious regional crisis in recent years. Venezuela, Ecuador, and Nicaragua frequently criticize Colombia's military activities in the region and are detached from the United States, which provides billions of dollars in military aid to Colombia.


Billions of dollars? With the United States deep in debt and deficit, its citizens (and so-called elected representatives?) might question the wisdom of such "aid"

"This is a political, not a military reaction," said Adrian Bonilla, a professor of international relations at the Latin American Faculty of Social Sciences, a university in Quito, Ecuador. "What is clear is that military, police, intelligence, and security cooperation between Colombia, Ecuador, and Venezuela are completely fractured at this moment."

The Colombian government said Saturday that Devia was killed in heavy combat between rebels on the Ecuadoran side of the frontier and Colombian troops on the other side.

Defense Minister Juan Manuel Santos said fighters were then called in to bomb the rebels and that after they were killed, Colombian troops crossed the frontier to recover the bodies of Devia and another rebel commander, Guillermo Torres, better known as the writer of revolutionary ballads.

The Colombian government said Uribe called Correa to brief him about the attack.

Yesterday, Correa called the incursion into Ecuador "the worst aggression Ecuador has suffered on the part of Colombia." In a news conference in Quito, he said that although Uribe had told him the attack took place in battle, an Ecuadoran army patrol that examined the camp had determined otherwise.

"They were bombed and massacred while they slept, using pinpoint technology that found them at night, in the jungle, for sure with the collaboration of foreign powers," he said.

Myles Frechette, a former ambassador to Colombia who works as a consultant in Washington, said the Colombians probably weighed the strike on Devia against the potential fallout from going into Ecuador. But he said repairing the diplomatic damage would be a challenge.

"Uribe has got to go down there, meet with Correa, calm him down, and he's going to have Chávez fuming at the border," Frechette said. Uribe is "in a pickle, in the sense that diplomatically he's got to get himself out of this corner that he's got himself in."

How does Frechette know Uribe got himself into the pickle; isn't he contradicting Correa's statement re: collaboration with foreign powers? Maybe the newspaper doesn't provide enough space to delve into such topics...
Click for a full size map

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Venezuela Geography

Venezuela Geography

map of Venezuela

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