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Gender: Male
Hometown: South Texas. most of my life I lived in Austin and Dallas
Home country: United States
Current location: Bryan, Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
Number of posts: 78,328

About Me

Middle-aged white guy who believes in justice and equality for all. Math and computer analyst with additional 21st century jack-of-all-trades skills. I'm a stud, not a dud!

Journal Archives

Port of Galveston workers call for end of CDC's cruise orders

GALVESTON -- Dozens of people who rely on the cruise ships, and cruise passengers, to move in and out of the Port of Galveston rallied together on Wednesday to plead with the U.S. government to remove one of the hurdles preventing cruises from resuming in the United States.

Speakers at the rally at Galveston’s Cruise Terminal No. 1 asked the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to let a no-sail order expire as planned at the end of October.

No-sail orders, combined with voluntary shutdowns by the global cruise industry, have paused cruises in the United States since the middle of March. The orders are meant to prevent the spread of COVID-19 on cruise ships, which health officials have pointed to as the source of some of the earliest outbreaks in the United States and as particularly at risk for future outbreaks.

The shutdown has cost cruise companies and the ports they operate out of millions of dollars in revenue. It also has meant that people who work on the docks and at the cruise terminals are losing out on pay.

Read more: https://www.galvnews.com/news/free/article_0dbc99b9-1213-56da-a8bc-aba67f34c5f4.html

SpaceX conducts multi-engine test; Plans are to fly prototype to 50,000 feet from Boca Chica

At 3:14 a.m. Tuesday SpaceX conducted a successful static-fire test of the three engines mounted in its SN8 Starship prototype at the company’s Boca Chica launch area.

It was the first time SpaceX has fired more than one of its liquid oxygen- and liquid methane-powered Raptor simultaneously. The test puts the company a step closer to launching the stainless-steel-clad SN8, which is set to receive a nose cone and perhaps another static-fire test before its first flight, possibly this month or early November.

SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk tweeted on Sept. 12 that testing of SN8 would include “static fire, checkouts, static fire, fly to 60,000 (feet and back), but then on Sept. 26 tweeted that the prototype’s first launch would be to 15 kilometers or about 50,000 feet.

If it comes to pass it will be by far the highest a Starship prototype has flown. SpaceX’s rudimentary Starhopper prototype flew to 500 feet in August 2019, followed by 500-foot “hops” of the Starship SN5 prototype on Aug. 4 and the SN6 prototype on Sept 3. of this year. Each of those vehicles was powered by a single Raptor engine. “SN” stands for “serial number.”

Read more: https://www.brownsvilleherald.com/2020/10/20/spacex-conducts-multi-engine-test-plans-fly-prototype-50000-feet-boca-chica/

COVID is out of control, literally in Lubbock

Ask public health director Katherine Wells about a possible COVID-19 hotspot and she'll say it definitely could have been, or it could be.

The issue the health department is running into now with its contact tracing is that they can't pinpoint specific outbreaks because people are going too many places. When Wells' team interviews individuals who've tested positive for COVID-19, it's impossible to say where they contracted the virus when in the last week they went to bars, restaurants, private gatherings with friends or family, retail stores, schools and so on.

Wells is seeing this across the board. She said it's best to just assume COVID is everywhere.

Wells emphasized as strongly as she could that it's important people wear face masks, especially now. If people continue going out in public at the rate they are, Wells said the only way to slow the spread is by wearing a mask, and to socially distance.

Read more: https://www.lubbockonline.com/story/news/2020/10/20/lubbock-covid-19-hospitals/5994442002/

Greek court imprisons far-right Golden Dawn party leadership

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — A Greek court decided Thursday to imprison the leadership of the extreme right-wing Golden Dawn following their convictions for running the party like a criminal organization, but granted suspended sentences to five of the party's 18 former lawmakers who were convicted of lesser charges.

The decision by a three-judge panel came after days of summations by defense lawyers following the prosecutor’s recommendation that all former Golden Dawn lawmakers be allowed to remain free pending appeal. The appeals process could take several years.

The judges rejected a request to suspend the sentences of party leader Nikos Michaloliakos and other former lawmakers who were convicted of leading a criminal organization. Michaloliakos and another five former lawmakers received 13-year prison sentences, while a sixth was sentenced to 10 years.

The 11 others, who were convicted of simple participation, received sentences of between five and seven years. The judges ruled that five of those convicted of participation, including Michaloliakos’ wife, Eleni Zaroulia, could remain free during their appeals.

Read more: https://www.beaumontenterprise.com/news/article/Greek-court-imprisons-far-right-Golden-Dawn-party-15666585.php

Here's how we can fight the stigma of depression together

by Heather Loeb

I was diagnosed with major depression and anxiety 20-plus years ago after losing my beloved grandmother to cancer. I felt embarrassed, ashamed and I didn’t tell hardly anyone, not even my parents. Somewhere along the way, and I don’t know where, I started subscribing to the belief that people with depression are weak and lazy – that they are less than, even.

So, I struggled unnecessarily in silence for almost two decades because of the dangerous stigma that surrounds depression (and other mental disorders).

Sadly, I’m not alone when it comes to buying into the stigma of mental health. Even though there are more than 17 million adults in the U.S. suffering from depression, the stigma thrives, especially in African American and Latinx cultures. This is due to a number of things, including language barriers, socio-economic background, lack of insurance, misinformation about depression and a lack of understanding among these cultures that depression is a real disease with physiological symptoms.

Adding to the stigma is the idea of “machismo” which plagues men, particularly men of Mexican descent. They believe they have to be tough and restricted in their emotions, but studies have found that those who live by that code end up having higher levels of depression and stress.

Read more: https://www.caller.com/story/news/local/2020/10/19/heres-how-we-can-fight-stigma-depression-together/5971783002/
(Corpus Christi Caller-Times)

University of Texas Longhorn band won't play "Eyes of Texas" this weekend after some members say

University of Texas Longhorn band won't play "Eyes of Texas" this weekend after some members say they're unwilling

The Longhorn Band will not play “The Eyes of Texas” at this Saturday’s football game between the University of Texas at Austin and Baylor University after a survey of members revealed several students are unwilling to play the traditional alma mater song, according to The Daily Texan.

The survey was sent to band members asking if they would be willing to play “The Eyes,” a song that has divided the university community in recent months over its ties to minstrel shows where performers wore blackface. The Daily Texan reported that a message sent to band members by leader Scott Hanna said the survey results wouldn’t affect whether the band performs at future games. The band has yet to play at a football game this season, due to safety restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Band members are “evenly divided” over playing the song, the student newspaper reported, but responses from certain instrument sections would prevent the band from playing this week. The message from Hanna said many band members wanted to have further discussions about the song, which he said he would facilitate.

A spokesperson said in a statement that the university will continue to work with band members to maintain the musical traditions of UT, including "The Eyes of Texas," but given the long-standing traditions and the mission of the spirit band, this disagreement needs to be resolved before the band resumes public performance.

Read more: https://theeagle.com/news/state-and-regional/university-of-texas-longhorn-band-wont-play-eyes-of-texas-this-weekend-after-some-members/article_de4074f2-f7bd-5d82-9610-eebd32ee2808.html
(Bryan-College Station Eagle)

Jimmy Kimmel Live: OF COURSE Donald Trump Has a Secret Chinese Bank Account

Former Blue Bell Creameries CEO Paul Kruse charged with wire fraud in 2015 contamination

Former Blue Bell Creameries President and CEO Paul Kruse has been charged with wire fraud and conspiracy in connection to an alleged scheme to cover up sales of listeria-tainted ice cream in 2015, officials said.

According to the Department of Justice, Kruse was charged with seven counts of wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud related to his alleged efforts to conceal from customers what the company knew about listeria contamination in certain products. The indictment was filed in federal court in Austin.

The indictment states officials notified Blue Bell in February 2015 that products from the company's Brenham factory had tested positive for listeria and Kruse allegedly orchestrated a scheme to deceive customers, including by directing employees to remove potentially contaminated products from store freezers without notifying retailers or consumers as to why. Kruse is also accused of directing employees to tell customers there was an unspecified issue with a manufacturing machine. The company did not immediately recall the products or inform customers about the potential contamination, the indictment states.

Charges against Kruse were dropped in July by a U.S. district judge. The order of dismissal document for the United States versus Kruse was signed by Judge Robert Pitman of the Western district of Texas — Austin Division, stating the dismissal was granted on the grounds of “lack of subject-matter jurisdiction.

Read more: https://theeagle.com/news/local/former-blue-bell-creameries-ceo-paul-kruse-charged-with-wire-fraud-in-2015-contamination/article_6e9781d0-13e8-11eb-8cfb-67b734aae6a1.html
(Bryan-College Station Eagle)

Anchorage man ordered to learn about Holocaust as part of sentence for federal weapons violations

An Anchorage man was required to learn about the Holocaust and read about overcoming extremist beliefs as part of his sentence in federal court for illegally owning a machine gun and silencers.

Investigators and prosecutors had expressed concern that Michael Graves, now 21, could have potentially used the weapons in his possession to commit a mass shooting because of a number of tweets he posted that featured violent rhetoric aimed at minority groups.

Graves was sentenced Wednesday to 18 months in prison, time that he has already served since his arrest. He will be on supervised release for the next three years. As part of a plea agreement, Graves also read specific books and took classes during his incarceration that were aimed at moving him away from extremist viewpoints.

Graves, who spoke at Wednesday’s hearing, said he’s a better person because of the educational experience.

Read more: https://www.adn.com/alaska-news/crime-courts/2020/10/21/anchorage-man-ordered-to-learn-about-holocaust-as-part-of-sentence-for-federal-weapons-violations/
(Anchorage Daily News)

Anchorage School Board votes to name East Anchorage High School after the late Sen. Bettye Davis

East Anchorage High School will soon bear a new name: Bettye Davis East Anchorage High School.

The Anchorage School Board voted unanimously on Tuesday night to change the name of the 1,700-plus-student high school in honor of the late Sen. Bettye Davis (D). She was the first Black woman elected to the Alaska House of Representatives and the Senate, and was elected to three terms on Anchorage’s school board. She died in 2018.

The unanimous vote followed a lengthy process to rename an Anchorage school after Davis. The Alaska Black Caucus spearheaded a movement to rename East High, but it was met with resistance from some in the school’s community.

The school board in its motion to rename the school specified in an amendment that the name East Anchorage High School will continue to be used for sports and activities, and that the Thunderbird mascot remains the same.

Read more: https://www.adn.com/alaska-news/education/2020/10/21/anchorage-school-board-votes-to-name-east-anchorage-high-school-after-state-sen-bettye-davis/
(Anchorage Daily News)
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