Daily Archives: September 24, 2012

“she and her grandmother had an uneasy feeling about putting her brother in the trunk”

Our local news station reports:

An Edina woman is facing child endangerment charges after she was accused of having her nephew ride in the trunk of her Lexus to protect her leather seats because he was wet.

…Susan Marie McCarty picked up her nephew at [an amusement park] on a hot August afternoon. Witnesses …

McCarty told police her nephew had gone on a water ride and she didn’t want him to drip water on the car’s leather seats, …

The boy’s sister told police that the boy had been warned … She added that her brother had seemed excited about it…

The boy, who lives in Wayzata, told police he didn’t want to question his aunt — and he willingly stayed in the trunk until he was dropped off. When he got hot, his family members aimed the air conditioning vents at the compartment venting into the trunk.

Well, that was nice of them.

Every time a child has a birthday, a Higgs Boson dies

Helium is rare. It is not produced in factories, and the places where it is found in the wild are unusual. When it gets lose, it tends to drift out into space. Simply put, it is a hard to find commodity with a limited availability. Helium is important in science. Big Science Projects like the Large Hadron Collider use Helium to cool magnets down to near absolute zero. Helium is also used in MRI machines, which have become an important part of medial research and diagnosis. Without a supply of Helium, a lot of important science projects would be in trouble.

From the BBC:

Prof Welton told BBC … “We’re not going to run out of helium tomorrow – but on the 30 to 50 year timescale we will have serious problems of having to shut things down if we don’t do something in the mean time.”

… “The reason that we can do MRI is we have very large, very cold magnets – and the reason we can have those is we have helium cooling them down.

“You’re not going into an MRI scanner because you’ve got a sore toe – this is important stuff.

“When you see that we’re literally just letting it float into the air, and then out into space inside those helium balloons, it’s just hugely frustrating. It is absolutely the wrong use of helium.”

For this reason, Welton and others as asking the question, should we be using Helium for uses such as making children’s balloons float?

The balloon industry counters, noting that “Balloon Gas,” which is what they call their product, is made of Helium recycled from medical uses and mixed with air, and that very little research grade Helium, if any, is lost to the process of engineering children’s birthday parties. I suppose, though, that they could use hydrogen for the parties. It would make Chuckie Cheese a more…interesting…place.

Who says science doesn’t have enough controversy!

Romney-Ryan Space Plan: Do What Obama Has Been Doing

But at the same time say that Obama is doing it wrong:

The campaign’s plan cited four priorities – giving NASA focus, working with the international community, increasing the nation’s capacity to defend its assets in space and easing trade limits on foreign sales of American “space goods.” Romney did not suggest increased space spending — his budget plan would force cuts in domestic programs, including space — but on increased reliance on commercial firms to get Americans and their goods into space. That mirrors the Obama administration’s plan.

Romney on Health Care

First, if you don’t have health insurance, that’s OK. Just wait until you are catastrophically ill and then they’ll pick you up in an ambulance and bring you to an emergency room. He does not discuss what happens later when they come to collect the payments. Also, according to Romney, an Obamacare like plan was a great way to manage health insurance for Massachusetts at the time he was governor, but this does not apply to other people.