Ares launch video. In hi-res, no less!

Once again Gizmodo has given me an excuse to enjoyably waste a few more minutes watching a cool video. This time it is the recent test launch of the  Ares 1-X rocket – the biggest since the Saturn rockets that sent us to the Moon.

ares1-Xlaunch

Check out the video here.

Pic from AP.


Evolution & Dawkins – the Greatest Show on Earth

I’m embarrassed at how late to the party I am with this, but PZ Myers has a great review of Richard Dawkin’s new book on what I’m going to take to calling the Fact of Evolution.

greatestshowdawkinscover

Have a read here.


Access to health services should be a right

To anyone outside the US it is apparent that the provision of adequate, affordable health care is a muddied and confusing political issue. A recent study should be a wake-up call for opponents of government involvement in the assurance of this service. In short, access to health care is a moral, not political, issue.

The Johns Hopkins Childrens Hospital claims that 17000 children have died in the US within the last 20 years because their families were unable to afford adequate private health insurance. Further, sociodemographic trends predict the likelihood of a child dying; people in economically depressed areas need help.

Surely sanity needs to prevail? If the poorest people in a community can’t afford access to health care, then a secular government must intervene. How can you oppose a system of gauranteed universal health care and still claim to be an ethical citizen?


Nom nom nom on Fido to save the planet

Seems that some NZ environmentalists have taken it upon themselves to show pet-lovers the true error of their ways in their new book Time to Eat the Dog: The Real Guide to Sustainable Living.

happy-dog

Brenda and Robert Vale of Victoria University, Wellington, calculated the ecological footprint of common household animal companions to draw some alarming conclusions. For instance, a large dog consumes an equivalent amount of energy to driving a large family car or SUV 10,000km every year. They suggest instead keeping rabbits and chickens that have a more traditional end as a hearty repast upon their expiration.

Of course, this has upset a few cardigan-wearing, non-poo-pick-upping dog-owners who can’t abide the idea of nomming on their fur-kids… Oh well. Their loss – I mean, I’d be happy to try a green curry with dog. It’s all just meat, right?

Dominion Post, NZ, via Slashdot