Trump Will Find a Way

The Washington State Attorney General wants to examine the “intent” behind President Donald Trump’s executive order (now on hold) to ban travelers from 7 mostly Muslim countries.
More to the point as far as this blogger is concerned, however, is what is Trump’s intent for the presidency itself.
Think about it. He’s a business man used to getting things his way. Trump can’t tolerate people rebuffing him. It causes a tirade of tweets from @POTUS and @theRealDonaldTrump.
The President feels confident the legislative branch is mostly on his side. He can write any executive order he wants and rule the country like a dictator and absolute monarch. His intent is that he, as president, can demand and get anything he wants. His followers, apparently, want nothing less. After all, he’s merely fulfilling his campaign promises.
Is not there supposed to be a checks and balances system provided by three branches of government? No one entity has absolute power in America. We still have the Executive, Legislative and Judicial branches. Short of rewriting the Constitution it’s not going to change. (Unsurprisingly, there is talk of amending the constitution with respect to the role of the Judicial branch.)
Trump doesn’t like being curtailed by a lil’ ol’ Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals or some Washington judge seeking to know his intent.
The President is having a temper tamper. Still, his past speaks for itself. This man doesn’t roll over and play dead, either. Trump will still find a way. Second Executive Order here we come.

How do you pronounce this planet's name?

Okay. Here’s the deal. How do you pronounce Uranus?
According to UniverseToday.com:

The standard way to pronounce Uranus among astronomers is to put the emphasis on the first syllable “ur” and then say the second part “unus”. This is the standard literary pronunciation. The more common way people have pronounced it is u-ra-nus, with the “ra” sounded like “ray”. The truth is that all the different ways of pronouncing Uranus are perfectly fine, even the way that sounds a little dirty.

Antarctica’s Changing Larsen Ice Shelf

The Larsen Ice Shelf is situated along the northeastern coast of the Antarctic Peninsula, one of the fastest-warming places on the planet. In the past three decades, two large sections of the ice shelf (Larsen A and B) collapsed. A third section (Larsen C) seems like it may be on a similar trajectory, with a new iceberg poised to break away soon.
Source: Antarctica’s Changing Larsen Ice Shelf

Why you should blog

It was my wife’s idea. One evening she thought to start a blog on WordPress. She even came up with a great domain name: USAviewpoint.com. Needs work still.
She has a lot of ideas and wants to express herself. That’s the point of a blog, isn’t it?
So I started my own, too.
Living in wild sociopolitical times seemed an appropriate time to launch RationalThinking101.com.
Expressing myself daily helps me to share my thoughts and cross-post on Twitter, Facebook and elsewhere. 

Dark Perplexity: Garden of Eden or Big Bang?

So which is it? Adam and Eve or the Big Bang?

It’s a dark mystery.

We all know how an atheist would answer, and we all know how a fundamentalist Christian, Jew or Muslim would answer. Trying to argue either side would therefore be fruitless, like expecting to convince a pro-lifer or pro-choicer to accept the opposing view.

Simple acknowledgment will suffice. Both communities are replete with ambiguities. For example:

  • Do we really understand how chemical evolution morphed into biological evolution? Just how did amino acids become DNA anyway?
  • What’s causing the galaxies to accelerate apart rather than slow down and collapse in on themselves? Dark energy? What’s that?  Obviously, astrophysicists don’t know. That’s why they call it dark. Not as in evil, but as in “I have no clue.” All they know is gravity should be slowing it down and it’s not. What’s really happening is a dark mystery.

It goes on and on.

  • There’s too much mass in the galaxy. They call that one dark matter. Instead of flying apart, the outer stars, like ours, remain orbiting the galactic center and we don’t understand why.
  • What is gravity anyway?

I’m sure you realize I don’t have the answers either, but that’s the whole point, isn’t it?

The whole quandary is a dark perplexity.

A Thousand ways to Die

Based on a once popular TV series of the same name, here are ways you could die on a bad day. Worry if you are bored.

  1. Gamma ray burst from a star 1,000 light years away.
  2. Giant asteroid strike.
  3. Humongous solar flare.
  4. Getting shot by a sniper.
  5. Being blown up by a terrorist.
  6. Earth swallowed by a rogue black hole.
  7. Earth being hit by an untethered rogue planet drifting through space.
  8. Alien invasion.
  9. Nuclear winter.
  10. Too much TV.
  11. The sun suddenly becoming a red giant and swallowing the Earth.
  12. Donald Trump getting reelected in 2020.
  13. A tornado hitting your house.
  14. Yellowstone erupting.
  15. Getting stung by a giant jellyfish.
  16. Earthquakes caused by fracking.
  17. Drinking water polluted due to fracking.
  18. Being separated from your cellphone, going nuts and jumping off a cliff.
  19. Texting while riding a horse and getting knocked off by a tree branch.
  20. Getting caught in a severe snowstorm while visiting a nudist camp.
  21. Add your own below…