Posts by drtom

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  • CARTOON: The Dawkins Delusion

    01/01/2012 6:23:30 PM PST · 382 of 523
    drtom to GourmetDan
    Again, the point is that the existence of biological systems, mechanisms, behaviors, etc is not evidence of 'compatibility' with evolution without engaging in logical fallacy.

    This would be true in a fully observable environment where all mechanisms are observable and parameters are measurable, and everything adds up to a rule. In a post-Newtonian world this approach is not sufficient anymore. When you have unobservable mechanism or the observation itself changes the outcome, you instead now observe input states and output states and design a postulative framework that can bridge the two states. Then you test the framework by throwing scenarios and supplemental observations at it. In other words, you try to break it by finding inconsistent states and incompatible behaviour.

    Simple example: for centuries we thought the sun was made of coal until we realized that it would burn out too fast. Then we tried to explain it with fission but spectral analysis did not provide evidence of fissable materials and the energy balance didn't add up. When Bethe and Weizsaecker provided their CNO cycle explanation it was a theory at the time and fusion was little more than a concept. Over the decades we attempted to disprove each step in the CNO cycle to no avail and by now B/W is the accepted standard for solar energy production. But for all we know it could also be Superman's hampster on a warp drive bike providing energy in the core.

    For a more recent and abstract example, QED and QCD are complex frameworks that involve the concept of exchanging a virtual particle in order to describe weak & strong interactions. We can observe certain input and output parameters but we have no direct observation of said particle. I would argue that the QED is one of the most scrutinized conceptual frameworks in physics and that it has held up remarkably well. However, each experiment, each interpretation of observations was founded in the assumption of a QED.

    If you postulate evolution as a conceptual framework with a few practical drivers such as a gradient towards better adaptability, you can test observable parameters against it without commiting a fallacy (provided of course appropriate bracketing on the part of the researcher). As with CNO or QED, individual observations will not prove or disprove the theory, but they provide waypoints. If we agree that sexual reproduction offers greater adaptability than asexual there should be a gradient from A to S.

    If we found only members of A and members of S, it would be hard to postulate that there is a gradient towards S for organisms of higher complexity. While it would also not conclusively prove that some imaginary being decided to make some A's and some S's and this will stay like this for all eternity, I would consider it evidence. However, the discovery of the same species in A and S states, parthenogenesis, hermaphrodism and so forth all are (IMHO) pointers towards a dynamic system. (Parthenogenesis (IMHO again) is a remnant of an A-centric ancestry which tries to compensate for the shortfalls of S - but that's another discussion).

    Main point is that postulating the existence of a conceptual framework with unobservable mechanisms, and using observations of observable members of the corresponding system to test the compatibiity with such framework does not constitute logical fallacy.
  • CARTOON: The Dawkins Delusion

    12/31/2011 11:14:18 PM PST · 378 of 523
    drtom to GourmetDan
    Not sure where you got the basis for your statement.

    Where did I say that sexuality is conclusive and sufficient proof for evolution? You have to follow the chain of argument before impute such a thing. If anything, the fallacy occurred on the theists' side:

    Consider the claim in post 32. It stipulated that there will never be a plausible way to bridge the emergence of sexuality and evolution, effectively implying that there CANNOT be a bridge because sexuality is a hallmark of creation (if anywhere, this is where your fallacy argument comes to play).

    In response, I showed that sexuality is in fact compatible with an evolutionary context.

    Where did you see a postulation "because there is sexuality, evolution is proven"?
  • CARTOON: The Dawkins Delusion

    12/31/2011 3:41:32 PM PST · 362 of 523
    drtom to grey_whiskers
    so I'll mull over how to recast my *actual* question, so you don't conflate a re-casting and a mixing of my statements with Dan's, with an answer to my question.

    That's excellent and in fact much appreciated. I am always open for a challenging good debate based on mutual respect and factual statements. Unfortunately, it happens more and more that what starts well turns into (a) ad hominem or (b) a mob mentality whereby party A pings their peer group and suddenly party B feels akin to stumbling into a union meeting and are being drowned out by the resident thugs.

    I'll await your post. Happy 2012!
  • CARTOON: The Dawkins Delusion

    12/31/2011 11:22:40 AM PST · 338 of 523
    drtom to grey_whiskers
    OK, there actually are now two questions to answer, (a) your logical deductions and (b) the inquiries you posted. I'll start with (a), then try to find a pheasant for tonight's dinner in this town, and come back to (b) this afternoon.

    Let's look at the problem presented. Per definitionem, you are looking at two single-element state matrices, i.e. we can P:={asexual} and Q:={sexual}. Also (per definitionem quaestionis) P=!Q and Q=!P. Thus, in this binary case, indeed !(!Q)=Q and !(!P)=P.

    Second, P-->Q is incomplete as you need to include a transition operator. (Call it what you want, the incentive, the driving force, the slope, the gradient). Let's borrow the notation from the guys over at physics and define the transition as <P|u|Q>.

    You are postulating that <P|0|Q>, i.e. both states exist because some imaginary being decided that (for no apparent reason) it would be a good thing to have the same specie occur in both states.

    Conversely, evolution postulates <P|u|Q> while the inverse <Q|u|P> is not true as Q apparently is a desirable state and u is a "gradient".

    I have two observable states P and Q, and I have a "gradient" u that unidirectionally transitions P into Q.

    Thus, Dan's claim that This is the fallacy of 'begging the question' for assuming that what exists has 'evolved' and can be organized into 'transitional stages' is non-sensical. It forces u=0 without giving a justification. In layman's terms, Dan is saying "any exploration into u by observing P, Q is moot because it is based on the assumption that u<>0 but I demand u=0 a priori". In other words, "don't show me proofs of Evolution because by doing so you are postulating that Evolution is true".

    But so that this is not a unidirectional debate, what I would like to ask is this: "Show me that u MUST be 0". I.e., in our particular case, show me why P and Q NEED to coexist without a transition between the two.
  • CARTOON: The Dawkins Delusion

    12/29/2011 10:53:24 PM PST · 52 of 523
    drtom to chrisser
    Great question!

    Of course, an insufficient albeit factually correct answer would be that evolution is still on-going.

    More to the point, however, it depends on the complexity of the lifeform.

    If you were a simple organism (like a simple bacterium) your high reproductive rate allows for sufficient mutation to survive. A more complicated reproductive system is not required. Arguably, bacterial conjugation which, as a mechanism for the exchange of genetic material, is regarded as the equivalent to sexual reproduction at a single cell level, can increase the speed of mutational adaptation. But the need for increased adaptation only became urgent during modern times with its biological/chemical advancements. In simplified layman's terms - nature didn't throw a new antibiotic on the market every week. B/Conj was discovered after WWII, but we don't know if it existed in earlier times or if it is a recent evolutionary step.

    The more complex the organism gets the more beneficial DNA transfer becomes, but it comes with a price: it requires a complex reproductive system and it requires a mate.

    Simple invertebrates include an intermediary evolutionary step in the form of hermaphrodism: The search for a mate is facilitated by the fact that you can do it with any other representative of your species, not only 50%.

    Once you get into really complex organisms you need to optimize the quality of the genetic exchange and have to forgo hermaphrodism. This is dangerous as you reduce your chances by 50%, but nature concentrates on the species and not the individual.

    In case you are interested, here is an intriguing article in non-scientific literature, somewhat related to the subject: it shows how sexual reproduction seems to be superior in slow (compared to single cell system) reproductive systems. Sexual vs. asexual reproduction

    Hope I answered your question. Cheers!
  • CARTOON: The Dawkins Delusion

    12/29/2011 10:17:31 PM PST · 51 of 523
    drtom to editor-surveyor

    Don't get a hernia from desperately trying to have the last word without admitting that you're out of your league when it comes to biology.
  • CARTOON: The Dawkins Delusion

    12/29/2011 5:51:44 PM PST · 38 of 523
    drtom to editor-surveyor
    Not so.

    There are enough "kritters", as you call them, that exist in both sexual and asexual reproductive forms and thus can easily represent transitional stages. This occurs in many taxonomies, from the simplest single cells (look up "conjugation") to relatively complex lifeforms (look up "caenorhabditis").

    In an evolutionary context, sexual reproduction will generally win out despite the need for a mate. This can be proven by means of statistics, or through experiments.
  • CARTOON: The Dawkins Delusion

    12/29/2011 5:10:36 PM PST · 28 of 523
    drtom to editor-surveyor
    The accident imaginators will never have an explanation for sexual reproduction.


    You are not seriously trying to suggest that this is some kind of unsolved mystery, are you?
  • CARTOON: The Dawkins Delusion

    12/29/2011 4:04:51 PM PST · 22 of 523
    drtom to metmom

    See post 15.

  • CARTOON: The Dawkins Delusion

    12/29/2011 2:48:04 PM PST · 15 of 523
    drtom to Teotwawki
    Once lifeforms become more complex (i.e. with specialized cells) a pure cell splitting process won't work anymore and reproductive systems that carry the entire genetic code evolve.

    Some plants can get by on self-pollination but, again, with rising complexity, you need two partners in order to avoid cumulative deterioration ("the incest syndrome").

    Next step up are hermaphroditic lifeforms (mostly invertebrates) which do not have separate sexes. In these groups, hermaphroditism is a normal condition, enabling a form of sexual reproduction in which both partners can act as the "female" or "male".

    Some hermaphroditic individual animals favour to act as a particular gender (although the other set of reproductive organs seems to be fully intact) which could be argued as the forerunner for split sexes.

    Through evolutionary processes one set of organs gradually ceases to function while the other is being enhanced. Do this over a few hundred million years and you have a new taxonomic group of lifeforms that presents with two distinct sexes.

    In a nutshell, you are correct: the two sets of organs did not evolve separately and turn out to be complementary "by accident".
  • Christopher Hitchens, militant pundit, dies at 62

    12/26/2011 10:23:52 PM PST · 272 of 274
    drtom to A_perfect_lady
    Allow me to congratulate you on a fight well fought. You stood up to the mob mentality of the resident self-righteous bible-thumpers and you did well. Your posts are succinct and well articulated (both of which doesn't bode well when arguing with the mob, unfortunately, but then again, nothing does).

    I take my hat off to you.
  • Christopher Hitchens' Body Donated to Medical Research

    12/26/2011 3:10:46 PM PST · 16 of 38
    drtom to Randy Larsen
    Committed to the end and then some!

    Rest in Peace Christopher Hitchens!

    Hear hear. A questioning mind and not just a blind follower. A true inspiration.
  • Norway shooting: Anders Behring Breivik's planning appears meticulous

    07/24/2011 3:09:55 PM PDT · 18 of 26
    drtom to Joe Boucher
    This murderer will spend NO more than 21 years in a Danish prison,

    Why would he go to a Danish prison?
  • Killer Cougars

    09/28/2010 10:42:16 PM PDT · 36 of 55
    drtom to Conservateacher; Celtic Cross
    This is incorrect.

    By federal law, it is legal in Canada to carry a rifle for predator protection in wilderness areas year-round. The only exceptions apply to restricted guns and handguns, which require registration as trapper, tour guide, scout etc.

    This federal law might be overruled locally by provincial law and each municipality's shooting regulations. Many municipalities have no-shooting areas and each province has differing laws regarding carrying a rifle out of season. Since in most provinces small game hunting is an almost year-round season, however, it is generally accepted to carry a shotgun and small game license.
  • Einstein's Relativity Affects Aging on Earth (Slightly)

    09/26/2010 6:47:12 PM PDT · 23 of 30
    drtom to wendy1946
    Thought experiments are not a rational basis for physics.

    That is not correct. Most theories-turned-laws in physics originated in an observation that could not be explained at the time. Hypotheses about the physical explanation emerge which then evolve into theories which are meant do be refuted, often in the span of decades. If a theory cannot be disproven it evolves into a lemma or construct. Special relativity has been proven hundreds of times over. General relativity is generally accepted (at least the concept that gravity influences time has been accepted). QED is another example of a framework that started as a hypothesis which is now generally accepted.
  • Dumb or Dumber ???

    08/10/2010 9:40:24 PM PDT · 10 of 31
    drtom to Jimma

    Dumbest. Post. Ever.
  • Finalist dies at World Sauna event in Finland

    08/07/2010 2:12:06 PM PDT · 18 of 58
    drtom to George from New England

    Rules (from Wikipedia)

    - Start temperature is 110 degrees Centigrade.
    - The stove will get half a liter of water every 30 seconds.
    - Use of alcohol is prohibited prior to and during the race.
    - Before the sauna any creams should be wiped off and wash.
    - In the sauna the competitor has to sit erect, hips and thighs attached on the bench.
    - Swimming-costume must be normal. Men may have a maximum 20 centimeter pant leg and women 5 centimeters wide shoulder straps.
    - The hair must be tied on ponytail, where they extend up to the shoulder.
    - Touching the skin and brushing is prohibited.
    - Other competitors must not disturbe.
    - When Judges ask, competitor show thumb up to be okay.
    - Competitors have to leave sauna without assistance.
    - With improper performance comes first warning. Another results in disqualification.
    - The winner is the one who is the last in the sauna.

  • Video of the Largest Wolf Pack Ever Found in Oregon

    08/06/2010 11:46:57 PM PDT · 112 of 125
    drtom to txhurl
    Until then, you are lost in leftist theory.

    Wish I had seen this before I engaged in a response to your previous post.

    Sorry, I had really just wanted to chat with someone who also has had direct experience with wolves and found your post very intriguing. But I have long given up carrying on conversations with people that include primitive political attacks in their responses. Could have been a good conversation. Oh, well. Good night.
  • Video of the Largest Wolf Pack Ever Found in Oregon

    08/06/2010 11:35:52 PM PDT · 111 of 125
    drtom to txhurl
    Never owned: you are correct. Never lived around one: I have. Good friend of mine in Ft. Fitzgerald nursed an injured bitch back to health and then decided to keep her because her foot didn't heal. Saw her almost every day.

    See my post to Tom Hawks: there is a difference between killing to teach, train, etc. and "killing everything in its path".

    Re boredom: sorry, but I have observed packs that spend an entire day grooming, socializing, playing, rearing, cleaning the area, you name it. If you adopted a wolf and expected her to be sitting nicely in the yard, without a pack, without a purpose and without constant interaction, then it is no wonder that she started to entertain herself. A wolf is not a domestic dog and a master/owner (no matter how benevolent) does not replace the social interaction and hierarchy of a pack. Lone wolves, even in the wild, are strange. So are lone lions, hyenas or elephants. Animals that are instinctively drawn to form social groups turn erratic if this environment is withheld.

    And they do retain their predatory instincts. You need to be aware of this and compensate for it. A very difficult thing to do, which is why it is not recommended to have wild animals as pets.

    Although it honors you that you tried to save one from starving.
  • Video of the Largest Wolf Pack Ever Found in Oregon

    08/06/2010 11:22:25 PM PDT · 108 of 125
    drtom to Tom Hawks
    There's a difference between "killing everything in their paths" and a natural hunting instinct.

    I have seen grays take out three bison calves in a row although the pack could only get rid of 1 1/2 afterwards. The reason was (a) the pack was so large that it couldn't communicate and agree on a single target (it split while the hunt was on) and (b) when the hunting frenzy developed it was impossible to stop them. Human behavior is quite similar by the way. Think of the buffalo eradication in the 1800s. After some trophy bulls were taken sometimes shooting frenzies developed just to kill and the carcasses were also left to rot on the prairie. Or the Japs in Nanking during the war. And so forth. It's a predatory instinct. Ever seen a henhouse after a nightly visit by a raccoon? Nothing left alive, yet only one bird taken away. Housecat empty a golf fish pond? Same story.

    Yet, you can have an entire pack play with the pups for four hours while deer stand in visible range. You can see buffalo grazing right beside a resting pack. In fact, as a human you can even acquaint with a pack and get fairly close.

    So, hunting instinct, yes. Killing everything in their paths, definitely not.

    But allow me to make one concession: there are such things as marauding packs. They don't have a territory or develop a proper pack hierarchy and are often lacking alpha wolves. They are rogue packs that do indeed spend the entire day travelling and hunting. But that's not a wolf pack just like a marauding drug gang is not an assembly of human beings.
  • Video of the Largest Wolf Pack Ever Found in Oregon

    08/06/2010 10:26:42 PM PDT · 100 of 125
    drtom to Tom Hawks
    any man who has seen the Canadian Grays do what I have seen them do, would never defend them as you do.

    You might not want to generalize that quickly.

    I lived in the Canada's Northwest Territories for the better part of three years and often followed wolf packs in Wood Buffalo Park. I have seen them stalk, hunt and kill moose and bison old and young, and yet I find them a beautiful, awe inspiring part of nature. You don't have to be an ecowhacko to enjoy the wild.

    Conversely, wolves have an incredible array of social interactions, family and pack behaviors, and communication techniques. It's actually highly fascinating once you get the hang of it.

    Similarly, they are far from "killing everything in their path". Yes, they kill dogs and coyotes because they perceive them as competitors, but they don't waste energy on non-sustenance engagements if they can help it. Yes, there have been isolated incidents (one every eight years on average) that haven't been fully explained, but we also have had black bears pursue and kill people within a hot springs spa area. Which doesn't turn blacks into maneating monsters. Fact of the matter is, that statistically wolves have virtually no aggressive history with man in North America.

    I guess some of us simply interpret "America The Beautiful" differently than others.
  • Vocanos are horrible for the environment

    04/18/2010 3:03:52 PM PDT · 13 of 36
    drtom to CincyRichieRich

    Hookd on Fonix again?

  • Breaking News: Magnitude 7.8 Earthquake Hits Indonesia

    04/06/2010 8:59:08 PM PDT · 18 of 22
    drtom to IamCenny

    Don’t hold your breath.

    Every year there are (on average) over 150 earthquakes worldwide of magnitude 6 or greater, including nearly 20 of magnitude 7 or greater.

    This translates into a dozen significant earthquakes each month, including three major ones every other month.

    In other words, there is no visible deviation from long-term statistics this year. And even if the number rose by 20,30 percent, you’d still be well within statistical fluctuations.

    Sorry to kill your hopes but you’ll die in about 60 years - boringly like everyone else.

  • Pope's preacher: Accusations akin to anti-Semitism

    04/02/2010 8:49:22 PM PDT · 8 of 20
    drtom to ATX 1985
  • Vancouver Winter Olympics-Photos Closing Ceremonies

    02/28/2010 8:56:49 PM PST · 28 of 40
    drtom to fkabuckeyesrule

    Are you referring to the piece where he said, “we are a people that know how to make love in the canoe which is why Canada’s health care system covers splinters”.

    That’s not bragging, but it’s called “making fun of oneself” (a.k.a autoirony). It’s a form of irony that Americans usually don’t get.

  • Ady Gil sinks after whaling skirmish

    01/07/2010 9:19:23 PM PST · 251 of 459
    drtom to elkfersupper

    While reducing population density can indeed lead to a healthier population overall, this only works until density falls below the conservation reliant threshold based on common migration patterns.

    Read: progeny doesn’t occur when the individuum can’t find a mate.

  • Ady Gil sinks after whaling skirmish

    01/07/2010 7:26:46 PM PST · 56 of 459
    drtom to szweig

    Not true. In 2007 Japan set out to hunt 50 humpbacks, again “for research purposes”.

    The only reason why they didn’t that year was due to international pressure, not out of a sense of responsibility. Japan (and most other Asian countries for that matter) do not show any interest in “sustaining the species”.

  • Ady Gil sinks after whaling skirmish

    01/07/2010 7:09:16 PM PST · 22 of 459
    drtom to festusbanjo

    There also is a demand for tiger bile.

    So eradicating this magnificent species off the face of the earth is also OK as long as it “produces a product”?

  • Vancouver Island Health Authority to cut jobs, sell assets, hike fees to balance budget [Canada]

    08/12/2009 10:06:46 PM PDT · 13 of 14
    drtom to max americana
    Would you like a prize for this extraordinary feat?

    LOL, no, thank you, my shallow friend - just like you I did not have any part in choosing my country of birth. I merely mentioned it to refute your insinuation that I "hadn't left Canada yet" (as opposed to yourself) and thus remained under the spell of the "Canadian inferiority complex".

    But as your posts become increasingly aberrant I bid you goodnight, coupled with the recommendation that you don't need to bend the truth or lie to make a point. Keep this in mind as you try to make your impression on the world. Cheers!
  • Vancouver Island Health Authority to cut jobs, sell assets, hike fees to balance budget [Canada]

    08/12/2009 9:35:43 PM PDT · 11 of 14
    drtom to max americana

    It’s always telling when someone has to revert to foul language in order to hide the point that they have been caught with their pants down spewing out untrue “facts”.

    If you need to nurture your small ego by making false friends, you should at least do so by sticking with the truth.

    As a sidebar, you may be surprised to hear that I still carry an American passport but live up here (at the moment) because of work commitments. However, I tend to conduct a lot of research into my respective places of residence, something you seem to be incapable of.

  • Vancouver Island Health Authority to cut jobs, sell assets, hike fees to balance budget [Canada]

    08/12/2009 9:09:03 PM PDT · 9 of 14
    drtom to max americana

    If you can’t help bashing your birth country you should at least get your numbers straight.

    Provincial sales tax is 7%, GST is 5% and has been so for a while.

    GST refund checks (I presume this is what you refer to) are not paid to residents per se.

    I have no idea what your “$25 climate change” check is supposed to be. Last year, the BC Government paid out $100 pp as a refund for the so-called carbon tax on fuel, so that residents are reimbursed for the tax we all (i.e. including visitors) pay on gas.

    Your comments on VIHA are equally idiotic, but I won’t comment on that because obviously you can’t keep even the most basic numbers straight, so what’s the point.

  • El Centro Airshow

    03/16/2009 6:51:50 PM PDT · 26 of 27
    drtom to ExGeeEye

    Nix zu danken!


  • El Centro Airshow

    03/15/2009 9:38:34 PM PDT · 15 of 27
    drtom to ExGeeEye

    ... and they’re located at Holloman AFB, New Mexico.

  • El Centro Airshow

    03/15/2009 9:36:36 PM PDT · 14 of 27
    drtom to ExGeeEye
    It's the crest of the Luftwaffe's Centre for Flight Training (Fliegerische Ausbildungszentrum der Luftwaffe (FlgAusbZLw))

  • Church shooting suspect has mental illness from Lyme disease

    03/09/2009 9:11:11 PM PDT · 104 of 110
    drtom to ventana
    Borellia Burgdorfi is a spirochete: different from a bacteria, no? V’s wife.

    Nope. Spirochetes are a phylum within the domain bacteria. In laymen's terms, spirochetes are type of bacteria.
  • Video captures massive meteor as it lights up sky in Canada

    11/24/2008 8:03:34 PM PST · 34 of 34
    drtom to Alberta's Child
    The main reason for that is that the light phenomenon you see actually does not originate from the meteor itself (as in a glowing piece of rock) but from a cloud of ionized gas surrounding it. The kinetic energy of the meteor ionizes the gas around it, which in return produces the light when recombining.

    This way a seemingly small object can produce a brilliant shine.
  • Obama speech at the Victory Column in Berlin- LIVE THREAD

    07/24/2008 12:04:29 PM PDT · 523 of 670
    drtom to keepitreal
    That's incorrect. Strived is a correct past participle of strive.

    strive, strove, striven and
    strive, strived, strived

    are equivalent. Merriam-Webster: strive
  • Kissing Off Canada

    03/10/2008 10:55:16 PM PDT · 12 of 13
    drtom to Cargon
    Welcome to FR. Always great to have yet another ignorant idiot spout off. Nice infantile language, too. What are you, 16?

    There is no permafrost around the tar sands. If anything, Fort McMurray belongs to a geographic are that's classified as "isolated patches" (0-10%) permafrost.

    The tar sands have been profitable since oil crept over the $50 mark. At $108/barrel this is one hell of a money-maker up there. Alberta posted a $7 billion surplus last year.

    A little more reading, a little less verbal diarrhea - does a lot of good.
  • Buffett Says The Party's Over

    03/03/2008 3:24:50 PM PST · 10 of 13
    drtom to PurpleMan

    I hearya.

    Really, who cares about recession and such things, as long as we’ve got fins to the left, ...

  • Wake-up Call for Canada

    11/20/2007 11:43:12 PM PST · 5 of 7
    drtom to Leigh Patrick Sullivan
    When did the Germans vote "strong pro-War leaders" into office?

    They have a coalition of social democrats and conservatives. Any suggested expansion of their Afghanistan mission is met with massive resistance in the parliament. Angela Merkel is anything but a strong pro-War leader.
  • Dubai Aerospace Enterprise to order 200 Airbus and Boeing aircaft

    11/11/2007 11:44:29 PM PST · 15 of 19
    drtom to Drew68
    I believe it.

    I have friends in Qatar and they tell me that although Doha is going nuts these days, too, it has nothing on Dubai.
  • Dubai Aerospace Enterprise to order 200 Airbus and Boeing aircaft

    11/11/2007 11:05:40 PM PST · 12 of 19
    drtom to Vince Ferrer
    Emirates Airlines head Sheik Ahmed Bin Said al-Machtum recently announced that with this mega-purchase of wide-body planes Emirates wants to become the leading airline of the 21st century. Dubai wants to attract 15 million visitors in 2012.

    Talk about mega.
  • Dubai Aerospace Enterprise to order 200 Airbus and Boeing aircaft

    11/11/2007 10:59:03 PM PST · 11 of 19
    drtom to sukhoi-30mki

    I think you are 100% correct. This is a different entity and it’s on top of the EA deal. Yikes, quite the lucrative weekend...

  • Thailand saves pangolins bound for China restaurants

    11/11/2007 10:49:30 PM PST · 15 of 19
    drtom to nuconvert

    Isn’t that the beast from “Rosemary’s Baby”?

  • Dubai Aerospace Enterprise to order 200 Airbus and Boeing aircaft

    11/11/2007 10:45:56 PM PST · 7 of 19
    drtom to John Valentine
    The A350 is only on paper right now. The first deliveries are planned for 2013.

    I wouldn't be surprised if EADS will be coming up for air by then. These things come in cycles (and Boeing had its ups and downs, too) and while they currently are hampered by restructuring and consolidation, it won't last forever.

    I also expect the A380 to make big inroads once the first 100 or so are in operation. Many carriers are taking a wait and see attitude but once the aircraft has matured and the terminals are in place, many will follow suit.
  • Counter ‘revolution’ brewing in Quebec

    11/11/2007 10:37:48 PM PST · 25 of 25
    drtom to Heartofsong83

    Oh, well. That’s what makes it so much fun I guess. Montreal has one hell of a great nightlife, and yet, is very safe for a city that size.

  • Dubai Aerospace Enterprise to order 200 Airbus and Boeing aircaft

    11/11/2007 10:29:50 PM PST · 5 of 19
    drtom to sukhoi-30mki
    I read that the deal includes 70 A350XWB (in two different versions) plus options for 50 more, 11 A380 (which makes it 58 for Emirates), and 20 A320.

    Overall, the deal is worth $20.2b for Airbus.
  • Counter ‘revolution’ brewing in Quebec

    11/11/2007 5:26:57 PM PST · 23 of 25
    drtom to Nathan Zachary; MplsSteve
    That's not correct.

    Montreal is almost completely bilingual. Quebec City is truly French.

    But Quebec is also a very friendly city, so you won't have a problem, Steve. Usually, if I go somewhere where I don't speak the local language, I learn a phrase down the line of "I can only hope that your English is better than my ...". Works every time. People laugh and are grateful that you tried.
  • A Canadian speaks out on their socialist, healthcare system

    10/12/2007 8:00:54 PM PDT · 19 of 21
    drtom to Gopher Broke
    No it is not sound.

    The 55% tax bracket is a lie. It does not exist.

    Many Canadians don't have a family doctor doesn't say why. I lived in the north for many years, and we offered premiums for doctors to settle up there but they preferred to go where they can play golf. This is not the fault of the health care system.

    Don't believe everything you read.
  • Lincoln Welcomes Canadian Guests at Reception Banquet

    10/11/2007 9:44:59 PM PDT · 10 of 11
    drtom to Bahbah; Clive
    There you go, guys. Sorry, this was taken with my BlackBerry camera while walking the pooch, so nothing fancy. The big ship was about 2km out, with a 500m security perimeter.

    USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) anchored before Esquimalt Harbour (Victoria, BC)

    USS Abraham Lincoln, before the cloud-covered silhouette of Mt. Baker (Washington) in the distance(Oct 4, 2007)