Saturday, December 30, 2006

Helsel's Frosty's Trees - Springfield Illinois Tradition

Bryon Helsel of Frosty's Trees - Wabash Avenue - Jerome, Illinois
This post features the Helsel family's Frosty's Trees Christmas tree outlet. Frosty's Trees operates its Christmas tree outlet each year from Ace Hardware located at 1600 Wabash Avenue in Jerome, Illinois. This year marks Frosty's 25th annual visit to Springfield, Illinois.

Kolby Helsel and Father Bryon Helsel Of Frosty's Trees - Springfield, Illinois
Frosty's Trees is owned, and operated by the Helsel family. The Helsel Christmas tree farm is located outside of Lake City, Michigan. Bryon Helsel, and son Kolby Helsel represent the fourth, and fifth generations of the Helsel family business, which has been in operation for nearly three quarters of a century.

Kolby Helsel of Frosty's Trees Holds White Pine - Jerome, Illinois
Several members of the Helsel family travel to Springfield, Illinois each year to operate Frosty's Trees, while other family members travel to other cities throughout the Midwest. Frosty's Trees opens the week before Thanksgiving, and closes business two days before Christmas. The Helsel family usually bring an assistant, and live in a recreational vehicle during their one month stay in Springfield.

Kolby Helsel of Frosty's Trees With Douglas Fir - Springfield, Illinois 2006

The Helsel family is an established name in the Christmas tree industry. Michigan accounts for ten percent of Christmas trees sold in the U.S., and the area in which the Helsel's farms are located is one of the most productive in Michigan.

In an article on the Lake City Michigan area Elizabeth Johnson states,

"Lake City is the hub of a five-county region in north-central Michigan that supplies about 10 percent of the 35 million fresh Christmas trees purchased annually in the United States. In Missaukee County alone, where Lake City is the county seat, rows of Fraser and Douglas firs, Scotch and white pines, and Colorado and blue spruce cover 6,500 acres of land on 40 Christmas tree farms. No wonder the town bills itself as the nation’s Christmas Tree Capital".

Google & TerraMetrics (c) Helsel Family Owns Many Tree Farms East of Lake City, Michigan
More Information About Helsel Family Tree Farms

According to an online Christmas tree grower profile, the Helsel family holds nearly one thousand acres of Christmas tree farmland in Missaukee County, Michigan.

Image From Helsel North Country Pines Website: (Edited) Christmas Tree Paradise

Here's a link to an interesting website featuring one of the Helsel family's North County Pines Christmas tree farms. The site includes descriptions, and photographs of several varieties of Christmas trees which are grown in the North Central Michigan area. It also provides a bit of Helsel family history.

Finally, here's a link to the Jerome Prophet's Springfield article which appeared in the Illinois Times featuring Frosty's Trees - December of 2006..

Friday, December 29, 2006

Heather Martin Sings To Brother - Come Home

Heather Martin Sings to Brother Shaun Martin

You were almost sixteen when I came into the world.
Mom and Dad had you first then three more boys I'm the baby girl.
I sure have a lot to look up to in you, you're really smart and funny with a big heart too.
After one year of college you knew what you had to do.
It's just like you wanting to help with the war.
So you joined the army when I was only Four.
This time of year we talk of big plans but you're over seas in some distant land.
You can't be here for Christmas, I don't understand.

When are you coming home, Shaun?
When are you coming home?!
We lit up the house like we always do but it doesn't seem bright because we can't have you.
In my prayers I ask God to keep you safe.
And I'm trying to be really brave.
Tell me that the fighting is through.
Come home!
I really miss you.

It's hard to enjoy the holidays without you.
But we're so proud of you and all the red white and blue.
Remember that Jesus is your best friend,
And someday our families will be together again.
You know we'll have a great big party then.

I want to show you how tall I've grown and introduce you to my new friends at school.
Maybe we could go and get some ice cream together but I really don't care what we do.
About The Video

Found this video on YouTube. In it little Heather Martin sings a song which mother Cindy Martin wrote. Cindy plays the piano off camera. Heather's older brother joined the army, and is in Iraq. Cindy, and Heather worked on the song as a way of dealing with the grief which they both felt over not having their loved one back for the Holiday. The song is written from Heather's point of view. You'll notice that at the very beginning of the song Heather prepares herself by rubbing the tears out of her eyes. In an interview she, and her mother, stated that it was hard to sing the song without crying.

I don't really see this video as political. It's both cute, and real tear jerker. I oppose the war in Iraq, but I have nothing but praise for our brave men, and women in uniform. Yes, come home!
WARNING: If you look for this video on YouTube don't read the comments section! In the minds of at least some of those who have viewed it they believe that it lends support to the "enemy", and have left many hateful comments about this little girl, and her mother.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

China's Weather Service Does More Than Predict Weather

Regulations on Administration of Weather Modification

Decree of the State Council of
the People's Republic of China


Regulations on Administration of Weather Modification, adopted at the 56th Executive Meeting of the State Council on March 13, 2002, are hereby promulgated and shall be effective as of May 1, 2002.

Premier Zhu Rongji
March 19, 2002

Article 1 These Regulations are formulated in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Meteorology Law of the People's Republic of China for the purpose of strengthening the administration of weather modification, and preparing against and mitigating meteorological disasters.

Article 2 Weather modification activities carried out in the territory of the People's Republic of China shall be in conformity with these Regulations.

Article 3 For the purpose of these Regulations, "weather modification" refers to the activities carried out for rain or snow enhancement, hail suppression, rain suppression, fog dispersal, or frost protection by exerting, under appropriate conditions, artificial influence on local atmospheric physical and chemical processes through scientific and technological means, so as to mitigate or avert meteorological disasters and properly exploit climatic resources.

Article 4 The competent meteorological departments shall, in light of the scale and impact of weather modification operations, arrange for the implementation of, direct and administer such operations under the leadership and coordination of local people's governments at or above the county levels in places where such activities are carried out.

Article 5 Work plans for weather modification shall be made for conducting activities in this field. Work plans for weather modification shall be prepared by local competent meteorological departments concerned in consultation with relevant departments at the corresponding levels, and be implemented after submission to and approval by the people's governments at the same levels.

Weather modification conducted under work plans for weather modification approved by the people's governments concerned is of public welfare, and expenses required therefor shall be included into the budgets of the people's governments at the corresponding levels.

Article 6 Weather modification operations shall be implemented under appropriate weather and climatic conditions, while local needs for preparing against and mitigating disasters and results of such operations shall be taken into full account.

Article 7 The State encourages and supports scientific and technological research of weather modification and extended application of advanced technologies thereof.

Local people's governments at or above the county levels shall organize experts to evaluate the effects of weather modification operations, and grant awards to or impose penalties upon relevant units providing basis for decision-making based on the evaluation.

Article 8 Sites for weather modification operations shall be determined by the competent meteorological departments of provinces, autonomous regions, or municipalities directly under the Central Government jointly with the relevant flight control departments in light of local climatic features and geographical conditions and in accordance with the Civil Aviation Law of the People's Republic of China and the General Flight Rules of the People's Republic of China.

Article 9 Units engaged in weather modification operations shall meet the qualification requirements defined by the competent meteorological departments of provinces, autonomous regions, or municipalities directly under the Central Government.

Article 10 Persons engaged in weather modification operations may not implement such operations until they have received training and passed the exams organized by the competent meteorological departments of provinces, autonomous regions, or municipalities directly under the Central Government.

A copy of the name list of persons engaged in weather modification operations by using anti-aircraft guns and/or rocket launchers shall be sent by the competent meteorological department in the place where they reside to local public security organ for the record.

Article 11 Where anti-aircraft guns and/or rocket launchers are used in implementing weather modification operations, the local competent meteorological departments at or above the county levels in the places where such operations are carried out shall submit an application to the relevant flight control department for air space and time period for the operations.

Where aircrafts are used in implementing weather modification operations, the competent meteorological department of a province, autonomous region or municipality directly under the Central Government shall submit an application to the relevant flight control department for air space and time period for such operations; the aircrafts needed therefor shall be supplied by the military or civil aviation authorities in a way as determined through consultations by both demanding and supplying parties; the airport authorities and other departments concerned shall provide necessary support according to the work plan for weather modification.

The flight control department concerned shall, upon the receipt of the application, promptly make a decision and give a notice to the applicant.

Article 12 Weather modification operations shall, in strict compliance with the operational norms and procedures formulated by the competent meteorological department of the State Council, be implemented within the approved air space and time period, and be subject to the direction, administration and supervision of local competent meteorological departments at or above the county levels, so as to ensure the safety of the operations.

Where weather modification operations are to be implemented, the local competent meteorological department shall, on the basis of the actual situations, make a public announcement in advance and notify the local public security organ to ensure the safety and security.

Article 13 Meteorological offices and stations in places where weather modification operations are implemented shall, without delay and free of charge, provide the observed meteorological data, information and forecast that are needed for such operations.

Relevant departments in charge of agriculture, water conservancy and forestry shall, without delay and free of charge, provide data relating to the status of disasters, hydrology, fires, etc. that are needed for weather modification operations.

Article 14 Where weather modification operations are to be implemented crossing the boundaries of different provinces, autonomous regions or municipalities directly under the Central Government, the relevant people's governments of the provinces, autonomous regions or municipalities directly under the Central Government shall make a decision thereon through consultation; if no agreement is reached through consultation, the decision shall be made by the competent meteorological department of the State Council in consultation with the relevant people's governments of the provinces, autonomous regions or municipalities directly under the Central Government.

Article 15 Rocket launchers, shells and rockets used for weather modification operations shall be manufactured according to the relevant compulsory technical standards and requirements of the State by the enterprises designated by the competent meteorological department of the State Council jointly with other departments concerned.

Where the equipment referred to in the preceding paragraph are to be procured for implementing weather modification operations, the competent meteorological departments of the provinces, autonomous regions or municipalities directly under the Central government shall organize the procurement in accordance with the relevant provisions of the State on government procurement.

Article 16 The transportation and storage of anti-aircraft guns, rocket launchers, shells and rockets used for weather modification operations shall be subject to the laws and regulations of the State on the administration of weaponry and explosives. Shells and rockets used for implementing weather modification operations shall be stored with the help of the military forces and/or local arm-the-people departments; if they are to be transported, the departments concerned shall go through the formalities in accordance with the laws and regulations of the State on the administration of weaponry and explosives.

Article 17 The competent meteorological departments of provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities directly under the Central Government shall organize an annual verification of anti-aircraft guns and rocket launchers used for implementing weather modification operations; those that fail to pass the verification shall be promptly checked and repaired, and those that fail again to meet the technical standards and requirements after the check and repair shall be scrapped.

Article 18 The following acts are prohibited:
(1) transferring equipment for weather modification operations to units or individuals that are not authorized to implement weather modification operations;
(2) using equipment for weather modification operations for activities not related to weather modification; or
(3) using equipment that fails to pass the annual verification, exceeds the expiration date or is scrapped.

The transfer of the equipment for weather modification operations between the units that are engaged in weather modification operations shall be submitted to and approved by the relevant competent meteorological departments of provinces, autonomous regions or municipalities directly under the Central Government.

Article 19 Any unit or individual that, in violation of the provisions of these Regulations, commits any of the following acts, thus causing serious consequences, shall be investigated for criminal liability in accordance with the provisions of the criminal law on the crime of causing an accident in the control of dangerous articles, the crime of negligently causing a serious accident or other crimes; if the act is not serious enough for criminal penalty, the competent meteorological department concerned shall, in light of its administrative powers, order to make rectifications and give a warning; if the circumstances are serious, the qualifications for weather modification operations shall be revoked; if losses are caused, the violator shall bear liability for compensation in accordance with law:
(1) violating the operational norms or procedures for weather modification operations;
(2) implementing weather modification operations beyond the approved air space and/or time period;
(3) transferring equipment for weather modification operations to units or individuals that are not authorized to implement weather modification operations;
(4) units engaged in weather modification operations transfer equipment for weather modification operations among themselves without approval; or
(5) using equipment for weather modification operations for activities not related to weather modification.

Article 20 Where weather modification operations are organized and implemented in violation of the provision of these Regulations, thus causing extraordinarily serious safety accidents, the responsible persons of the competent departments concerned, the persons in charge who assume direct responsibilities and other persons directly responsible for the violation shall be punished in accordance with the Provisions of the State Council on Investigation for Administrative Responsibility for Extraordinarily Serious Safety Accidents

Article 21 The specific measures for administration of weather modification activities carried out for military purposes shall be formulated by the Central Military Commission.

Article 22 These Regulations shall be effective as of May 1, 2002.


Ancient Chinese Secret - Thunder Makes It Rain

I have alleged that the U.S. has been operating a covert weather modification program for a half century. I have claimed the U.S. approach is to employ stealth aircraft over heavy cloud cover, and that those stealth aircraft are equipped with lasers, and particle beam generators. The particle beam generators are used to ionize the clouds, and to trigger, or produce artificial lightning. The lasers are infrared, or ultraviolet lasers which can't be seen without instrumentation, and are used to create ionized paths which directs the path of the triggered, or artificial lightning.

I have claimed that the creation of artificial lightning is pivotal to weather modification as lightning results in the creation of sonic booms (thunder) which passes through clouds condensing water vapor, and triggering rain.
In several previous post I asked does thunder make it rain?

Unlike in the United States, China is using a less sophisticated route to modify its weather, and therefore the program isn't classified. The U.S. program is closely linked to a broad variety of military, and intelligence programs, and therefore absolutely no public discussion has been allowed on the subject.

The following is an article dating to 2004 in China's state run People's Daily

China will make further efforts in the next several years to improve its weather modification service from the current single function of disaster prevention and reduction to a multi-functional service, Qin Dahe, director of the China Meteorological Administration, said in Beijing on February 27.

Qin made this statement at the second China weather modification meeting from February 26 to 28.

According to Qin, such a multi-functional service includes not only disaster prevention and reduction but also air and water resources exploitation and ecological environmental protection.

"As one of the countries most severely harassed by meteorological disasters, especially drought, China has seen soaring extreme weather days and water shortage since the 1990s, all of which have greatly impeded China's economic and social development," said Qin.

To lessen this problem, China established the National Coordination Committee of Weather Modification in 1994 and held the first all China weather modification meeting in 1995.

"Since then, great progress has been made in China's weather modification service. From 1995 to 2003, China has become the world's number one in its weather modification service scale," said Qin.

However, the weakness of insufficient scientific research has begun and will further impede the development of China's weather modification service, said Qin.

In the next few years, while continuing to take agriculture as the major service content, China's weather modification will make more efforts in air water resources exploitation to lessen the country's hunger for water and in improving its service in environmental protection and transportation.

According to Qin, tests of precipitation and cloud dispersal for the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the 2010 World Expositions in Shanghai is underway.

A plan for the development of China's weather modification activities from 2004-2010 was put forward to the meeting for discussion.

Weather modification means to modify the weather under certain weather conditions to the needs of people by artificial methods, including mainly precipitation enhancement and hail suppression, as well as fog, cloud and precipitation dispersal, frost prevention and thunder producing.

End Article.

Thunder Producing

In the last paragraph of the article above we see the final words, "and thunder producing".

Just why would China's weather modification service be interested in producing thunder?

Is it just because they like the sound of thunder?

Could that be it?

Are the Chinese scientist insane, or just plain ignorant?

What link do they see between producing thunder, and modifying the weather?

This is very perplexing indeed.
Here's the article in Chinese for my Chinese Readers

中国将进一步提高,在未来数年内从目前的天气服务功能单一防灾减灾的多功能服务 秦大河主任,中国气象当局说,2月27日在北京举行. 秦这番话在第二届中国天气从2月26日至28日的会议. 据秦 这种多功能服务不仅包括防灾减灾,而且空气和水资源开发和生态环境保护. "骚扰最严重的国家之一,气象灾害,尤其干旱 有了飞速天极端天气和缺水90年代以来, 所有这些都极大地阻碍了中国的经济和社会发展"琴. 淡化这个问题, 中国成立全国协调委员会,并于1994年举行的天气中第一个人影都在1995次. "从那时起,中国取得了长足的天气服务. 从1995年至2003年, 中国已成为世界上最大规模之一的天气服务"秦. 但是 弱点和不足,科研工作已经开始,将进一步阻碍了中国的影响天气服务 秦说. 在未来几年,在继续以农业为主要服务内容、 中国的天气将加大开发空中水资源,以减轻国家的饥饿和提升服务水环境保护和运输. 据秦 云和降水的考验,为疏散2008年北京奥运会,2010年上海世界博览会正在进行之中. 规划发展我国的影响天气活动从2004-2010年的会议上提出讨论. 天气手段改变天气气候条件下某些人的需要用人工方法 主要包括人工增雨、防雹,以及雾、降水、云离去, 防霜冻和打雷生产.

My Questions Follow

文章结束. 桑德在生产末段上述文章的最后,我们看到,"雷声大、生产". 刚刚为什么中国的天气服务有兴趣生产打雷? 难道只因为他们喜欢听惊雷? 莫非是它? 中国科学家是疯子,还是平原愚昧? 他们之间的联系是什么见风头生产、改装天气? 这确实是很困惑.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Gerald Ford - 38th U.S. President -1913-2006

President Gerald Ford - 1913-2006
Rest In Peace Gentleman Statesman.

Leslie King & Dorothy Gardner-King

Gerald R. Ford was born Leslie Lynch King, Jr., the son of Leslie Lynch King and Dorothy Ayer Gardner King, on July 14, 1913. His mother was forced to flee from the physically abusive marriage just two weeks after the wedding. Mrs. King discovered shortly after the separation that she was with child. She moved to Grand Rapids, Michigan, to live with her parents. Two years later she married Gerald R. Ford.

The Fords began calling their son Gerald R. Ford, Jr. even before his name was legally changed. At age thirteen he learned that Gerald Ford, Sr., was not his biological father.

Mr. and Mrs. Gerald Ford Sr

In high school Gerald Ford excelled in academics, and sports. He was also an Eagle Scout. Upon graduating he entered the University of Michigan in 1931, and graduated with a B.A. in Economics, and Political Science in 1935.

Gerald Ford - University of Michigan - 1933

After graduating he was offered the opportunity to play professional football, but took a position at Yale as a boxing coach, and was admitted as a law student at Yale in 1938. He earned his law degree in 1941, and returned to Michigan where he passed the Bar Exam.

Navy Officer Gerald Ford - WWII

Gerald Ford joined the U.S. Naval Reserves in 1942. He served as a physical fitness trainer, and navigator aboard the aircraft carrier USS MONTEREY. He came within inches of being swept overboard during a typhoon in the Philippine Sea.

A Buff Gerald Ford (athletic director) Fights for a Tip Off - USS MONTEREY

Ford returned to civilian life in 1946, joining a prestigious law firm in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
In 1948 Ford made a successful bid for Congress, marrying Betty Warren during the campaign.

Gerald Ford married Betty Bloomer Warren on October 15th, 1948

During the 1950s the Fords had four children. Ford began his career in Congress in 1949, and was reelected with wide margins twelve times.

Ford Congressional Campaign Advertisement (1948)

In 1973 when Vice President Spiro Agnew resigned after pleading no contest to charges of income tax evasion President Nixon appointed Gerald Ford to replace Agnew. Ford not only had a reputation for honesty, but was a strong Nixon supporter.

The Nixon administration self destructed when it became mired in the Watergate scandal. Nixon became the first President to resign his office when impeachment became a certainty. Gerald R. Ford was sworn in as the 38th President of the United States on August 9, 1974, stating "the long national nightmare is over". He later granted a pardon to Nixon.

Ford's administration was known for using the Veto. The U.S. economy continued on a downward slide, and the U.S. military withdrew from Vietnam.

Pat & Gerald Ford Whistle Stop Tour (1976)

Gerald Ford's bid for the presidency faced strong opposition in 1976 from the Democratic candidate Jimmy Carter. Carter won the election thus ending Gerald Ford's political career.
My Thoughts on Gerald Ford

I had the opportunity to see Gerald Ford speak twice during the 1976 presidential campaign. Dave of The11thhour was with me on both occasions. Ford visited Springfield, Illinois during his Whistle Stop Tour, stopping at the corner of 3rd, and Jefferson Street (Train Station). Actor Chuck Conner came along for star appeal. I was struck at how tall Chuck Connor was.

Gerald Ford also spoke from the steps of the Lincoln Home that year stating, "I am not a Lincoln, I'm a Ford". I was on the lawn directly across the street, and at the time was unimpressed with anyone who would say such a thing.

I always thought Ford was an honorable man. He was exactly what the nation needed in a very dark time. The nation was deeply skeptical about politics, and our recent departure from Vietnam led many to believe that the nation's best days were over. Ford's pardon of Nixon was probably the best decision that could have been made at the time, although I opposed it then.

While I passed out political campaign material for Carter I came to respect Gerald Ford. I often wish that the Republican Party had people like Gerald Ford in it today. It will be a long time before we see the likes of a Gerald Ford again.

Gerald Ford was a gentleman, and an honorable man. May his example shine forth leading others to public service.


Photographs used in this post were obtained from the Gerald Ford Presidential Library, and Museum Website, and are in the public domain. No permission is needed to use them. Please see their website for additional information.

I used the Gerald Ford biography, provided on the Presidential Library website to write this post. I rewrite, and consolidated the information that I found there in an attempt to avoid plagiarism (based on lack of quotations), and I have provided a link to their website.

You may follow this link to obtain more information about Gerald Ford.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Sigmund Freud - Father of Psychology

Sigmund Freud

In my various undergraduate classes I recall hearing gasp coming from fellow students (usually female) that accompanied the introduction of Freud's ideas on the Oedipus complex, and Electra complex. I took many Psychology classes, and so I heard this gasp many times. Freud certainly pushed the envelop on the subject of incest, but why?

In order to understand Freud we first have to look at the times in which he lived. Sexual repression was the order of the day in Freud's time just as it is today, only much worse. Freud was in effect a release valve for the sexually repressed people's of the time in which he lived. If Freud had lived in a less sexually repressed society he would have been less radical in his attempt at uncovering universal subconscious desires (drives) likely to offend the sensibilities of those most likely to deny them - the advocates of sexual repression.

Aside from incest Freud also proposed that "Penis Envy" drove women to ultimately submit to gender role identification with their mothers. Freud's model seems to be an overly simplistic proposal for such a complex process, but I believe Freud was searching for the origin of a gender role identification process which made the evolutionary transition from primates to humans.

While many of his proposals seem highly questionable today the fact that he was looking at instincts as a source of behavior (i.e., proto-behavior) was quite incredible for the time in which he lived. He was applying Darwinian principles in approaching an understanding of human psychology long before anyone else.

Freud greatest fault was that he was born into a time in which scientific instrumentation wasn't sufficiently advanced. Surely Freud would have advocated a more precise, and perhaps more complex, model of human biological, and psychological processes if he had lived today.

Despite Freud's limitations there are many observations which Freud recorded that are considered significant, and useful today. His ideas related to the subconscious are beginning to regain consideration. Freud blazed the trail for a field which had been the realm of the philosopher, and the Priest. His psychoanalytic theory led the way to the development of Psychology into the modern social science that it is today.

Sigmund Freud, the father of Psychology was my second "guest prophet".

Monday, December 25, 2006

Weather Modification No Secret In China - Unlike U.S.

In the United States the ongoing covert weather modification program is an open secret. Those brave enough to discuss the subject risk being discredited, while others are just too frightened to talk about it at all. Main Stream Media in the U.S. won't touch the story, but in China it's an entirely different story.

This from the ABC (Australia Broadcasting Company):

Cloud seeding solution to China's water shortage

PM - Tuesday, 20 July , 2004 18:36:26

Reporter: John Taylor

MARK COLVIN: There are fears of further flooding and landslides with heavy rains forecast over most parts of China this week. Already in one province alone, 60,000 people have been affected, but the recent rains obscure the fact that much of China is short of water.

Cloud seeding, especially over major cities, has emerged as a common solution, but as China Correspondent John Taylor reports, one area's cloud seeding can look like another area's drought.

JOHN TAYLOR: If the heavens aren't forthcoming, China's rainmakers aren't prepared to wait. Across the nation more than 30,000 people have been tasked with a single objective - bring down the rain. And they use planes, rockets and even artillery shells to make it happen.

Professor Wang Angsheng, from the National Disaster Relief Centre at the Chinese Academy of Science, says workers disperse chemicals into clouds to make it rain.

(Wang Angsheng speaking)

"It means, to add in some artificial cores, such as silver iodide or CO2 and such kind of chemicals, and some other chemicals - a small amount, but highly condensed," he says. "It helps cloud to have more cores, which will form small raindrops. Small raindrops collide with each other and form big raindrops, and then it increases the possibility of raining," he says.

It's uncanny living in Beijing how it rains on the eve of major events. Be it a big domestic event, or a visiting foreign politician, the rain has usually fallen the day before, making for temporary blue skies free of the normal haze.

Chinese officials say cloud seeding has helped to relieve severe droughts and water shortages in cities. In Shanghai officials are considering the measure to cool the daytime temperature, easing demand for electricity.

The technique is now so widespread that it is reportedly sparking rows between neighbouring areas, with claims of rain-greed.

The state-run China Daily newspaper recently cited a case in central Henan province.

Five neighbouring arid cities raced to cloud seed when the skies recently looked promising.

The rain came, but some local weather bureau officials in the last city, which received the least rain, have accused their counterparts of intercepting and overusing clouds.

Professor Wang says the competition is understandable.

(Wang Angsheng speaking)

"We all work on cloud seeding to make rain fall and increase the volume of raindrops," he says. "It is understandable, generally speaking, if there is strong convection rain, even if we don't work on it, it will fall too. In summer time, we can see lots of clouds, and without any cloud seeding works, rain falls. When it is very dry through in certain places, it aspires for clouds. Our institute has certain methods, rockets or flaks with which we hope to get the clouds down, or to put it more vividly, we want to shoot down the clouds," he says.

JOHN TAYLOR: The political storm clouds are brewing. But for now, rockets and planes are being used at will and in competition in China to bring down the rain.

This is John Taylor in Beijing for PM.

My Commentary Follows

Since the covert weather modification program in the U.S. is so closely related to laser weapons, particle beam weapons, and stealth aircraft delivery systems, it is a program trapped within a national secret. No public, or open scientific debate exist on the merits of the program.

By choosing an open path toward a weather modification policy will China rapidly advance methods that are simpler, less expense, more effective, and more reliable? Will China leap frog the U.S. in this important area?
Note: Thanks to a regular reader for this info.

James Brown Has Left The Building

The first recollection I have of James Brown was watching one of his concerts on a PBS special many years ago. The stage announcer came on stage, and begins introducing James Brown as the, "The Godfather of Soul", and "The Hardest Working Man in Show Business". I was close to turning the channel in disgust. I knew that no one deserved such titles, for how could they? Little did I know then that I was about to find out.

James Brown Sex Machine

This overweight little man with his hair slicked back comes bouncing out on stage, and I'm convinced at that moment that I must be watching some kind of comedy show, but the crowd is going wild - so I watched. Then came the music, and the singing, and the dancing, and the gymnastics, and the hypnotic trance like rhythm, and blues.

James Brown came reaching right through that little black and white television screen in a performance that would forever change my appreciation for music, and stage performance. From that night on I would always be a James Brown fan.

James Brown Olympia 1966 - A Must See Performance!

James Brown has left the building, but he didn't leave us alone. He's left us with his music, and his enthusiasm for music, and performance.

Impressions Of Midnight Mass In Color

Frankincense Poinsettias Columns Arches Ceilings Robes Murals Stained Glass Choir Balcony Prayers Altar Priest Laity Confession Altar Boys Podium
Altar Girls Songs Nativity Piety Mass Crucifix Jesus Mary Saints
Pope Bishop Holy water Absolution Procession People
Recession Candles Wine Chalice Eucharist
Communion Peace Love Forgiveness
Acceptance The Christ Child
The Savior
Is Born

Sunday, December 24, 2006

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