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Desert Tortoise comments

Posted in: S Korea accuses North of sending balloons with excrement across border See in context

The international equivalent of putting a dog turd into the mail box of a neighbor you don't like. So juvenile.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan rail firms to swap magnetic tickets for QR codes in green push See in context

What happens if your phone runs out of charge?

Airports have phone chargers and outlets where you can plug your own charger in. Keep your phone charged when traveling. Normal stuff travelers know and practice.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan rail firms to swap magnetic tickets for QR codes in green push See in context

Get out your phone, switch it on, unlock the screen, start up the app all before you can scan.

What I see is people boarding have their phones out and the QR code loaded on the screen when they get to the scanner. The scan takes maybe half a second. It is no different that arriving at the gate with your paper boarding pass in hand ready to go. Normal stuff when traveling.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Macron urges a green light for Ukraine to strike targets inside Russia with Western weapons See in context

France is nuts. This is just crazy.

Not defeating Russia is crazy. Learn the lessons of 1938! France that time sat on their hands and refused to come to the aid of Czechoslovakia. Neither would UK. We all know how that went. This is the same kind of situation. If the west backs down now then Russia will attack NATO directly and you will have your WWIII. Defeating Russia in Ukraine is probably the only way to prevent WWIII.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Posted in: Macron urges a green light for Ukraine to strike targets inside Russia with Western weapons See in context

Your comments as a hormonal teenager seem to mean that you want World War III..

Quite the opposite is true. Learn the lessons of 1938. Peace in our time, to use the quote of a now disgraced former UK Prime Minister, but surrendering land to a despot didn't bring peace at all. It only whetted his appetite for further conquest knowing the west at that time was weak and not willing to take a stand that might lead to combat. The result was not Peace in our Time but rather WWII. If the west is unwilling to do everything necessary to stop the Russians from taking Ukraine, then you guarantee WWIII.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Posted in: Macron urges a green light for Ukraine to strike targets inside Russia with Western weapons See in context

Russia is using foreign weapons to attack Ukraine. Why shouldn’t Ukraine pay it back?Does anyone who is not a panderer to dictators have an answer?

Why dont you ask Biden WH that ? U.S. National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said Tuesday. “We don’t encourage or enable the use of U.S.-supplied weapons to strike inside Russia.”

When it was determined that Russia was using North Korean ballistic missiles against Ukraine the US immediately supplied Ukraine with ATACAMS missiles which they promptly used to sink Russian warships in Crimean ports. The US didn't admit to this until well after the fact.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Posted in: Japan rail firms to swap magnetic tickets for QR codes in green push See in context

Most of us load our QR code on our cell phone and when we get where we are going the QR code scanner scans the QR code on our phone.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan rail firms to swap magnetic tickets for QR codes in green push See in context

I'd be careful how this is going to roll out. Scammers will be on the prowl.

Sigh. Airlines have been using QR code boarding passes for decades. So does Amtrak. Even the local movie theaters use them. Seems pretty secure.. The QR code is unique to the purchaser.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan constructs world's 1st wooden satellite See in context

Wonder how long it would last with all that solar radiation and temperature extremes...

"Wood doesn't burn or rot in the lifeless vacuum of space, but it will incinerate into a fine ash upon reentry into Earth's atmosphere — making it a surprisingly useful, biodegradable material for future satellites. After successfully testing their wood samples aboard the International Space Station (ISS) earlier this year, the scientists believe the test satellite is fit for launch."

"Three wood specimens were tested and showed no deformation after space exposure," the researchers said in a statement in May. "Despite the extreme environment of outer space involving significant temperature changes and exposure to intense cosmic rays and dangerous solar particles for ten months, tests confirmed no decomposition or deformations, such as cracking, warping, peeling, or surface damage."

https://www.livescience.com/space/space-exploration/nasa-and-japan-to-launch-worlds-1st-wooden-satellite-as-soon-as-2024-why

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan constructs world's 1st wooden satellite See in context

Scaled up to a large modern/future working satellite with large areas of exposed wood, the question is how long will it last?

Wood samples were exposed to open space in a test conducted at the ISS. Several different types of wood were left outside if you will for many months to see which kind of wood performed best. The scientists were surprised how well wood stood up.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

Posted in: Australian police arrest man accused of running naked through an airliner See in context

I'd wager the vast majority of ladies over the age of 18 have seen a naked man before so not sure what all the uproar is about unless it was hanging below his knees or something. Of course I don't think I want to sit next to a naked stranger for, um, sanitary reasons.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan constructs world's 1st wooden satellite See in context

Also nice to think that a life cycle cost analysis had been done to see if this clever looking/sounding satellite provides environmental benefits in comparison with trafditional ones.

Unlike bauxite used to make aluminum or titanium ore, wood is a renewable resource. You can grow new magnolia trees pretty much indefinitely. Of secondary importance, wood burns up completely on re-entry into the atmosphere. You don't have to worry as much about large chunks of metal impacting the surface doing damage or possibly hurting people.

14 ( +15 / -1 )

Posted in: Robot will soon try to remove melted nuclear fuel from destroyed Fukushima reactor See in context

Heard robot usage from beginning of incident, however those melted fuel still there after more than 10 years. Well done Japan Inc.

Radiation like that in a reactor that has suffered a meltdown is kinda rough on the electronics. Nobody has ever done this before. It's not like you go down to Best Buy and buy an off the shelf melt down remediation robot. It's more like it took ten years to figure out how to make a robot stay together and follow commands in about the most radioactive environment imaginable.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Posted in: Fears rise a second landslide and disease outbreak loom at site of Papua New Guinea disaster See in context

Get a move on please help those poor people

Is the United nations incompetent or what ?

Have you ever been to PNG? I have. I worked there for a time in the very same highlands this landslide occurred in. The terrain is formidable and hostile. There are few roads and most of these are mud. You can only drive in daylight except in a few larger towns and cities. Too dangerous to drive at night there. It rains about 19mm every day. Every day. I was a helicopter pilot there. Most afternoons we were shut down by big thunderstorms. You always carried a toilet kit and change of clothes because the weather was so unpredictable. You never knew if you would make it back to your home base or be forced to land somewhere else, like one of the little missionary airstrips or this place on Lake Kutubu we could duck into in a hurry and often did. Except for five major airports aircraft are restricted to flying only during the daytime using Visual Flight Rules. No night or instrument flying because the only navigation aids on the whole nation are at those five airports. There were no VHF or UHF comms either. We had to communicate on single sideband HF. It is a very primitive country compounded by the fact that the tribes all fight each other constantly. Even now a tribe is attacking the rescuers trying to help the people who are buried or left homeless because they belong to a rival tribe. These are disputes that pre-date the arrival of the colonial powers.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Ground Self Defense Force conducts annual live fire drill See in context

That tank needs top mounted slat armor over the turret. Drones will make short work of that.

The war in Ukraine is forcing every army to re-think its armored forces, their protection and employment.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Ground Self Defense Force conducts annual live fire drill See in context

What that means in simple terms is that Japan could no longer produce the ammunition, weapons, etc to continue the war. They were already de facto defeated.

Not entirely. In just eight months of the year 1945 Japan manufactured the following:

1,758 military trucks

5,474 fighter aircraft

1,934 bombers

855 reconnaissance aircraft

2,523 training aircraft

17 destroyers

30 submarines

599,563 tons of merchant ships

Japan's military industries were degraded but not destroyed, and they had stockpiled massive amounts of ordnance in anticipation of an Allied invasion.

https://www.ww2-weapons.com/military-production-japan/

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Ground Self Defense Force conducts annual live fire drill See in context

Japan had no options left, it was either surrender or fight to the death. On the other hand, the U,S. had options. Operation Downfall which included Coronet and Olympic and Coronet which involved a land invasion. Without doubt it would have succeeded with very high casualties

On the day Japan surrendered they had 6.98 million soldiers in the IJA. Had they chose to fight the casualties for the Japanese would have been staggering and the Allies anticipated at least 1 million casualties among their forces.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Ground Self Defense Force conducts annual live fire drill See in context

The USSR had shown in the European theater that if they are allowed to invade and occupy first, they would absorb that country into their union of Soviet satellites. 

In August of 1945 that was not yet apparent. The Allies including the Brits occupied all of the former Nazi controlled lands they had fought across at that point in WWII. Even Italy which officially changed sides in 1943 was under US and British military occupation. Nobody at that point knew how the post war world would shake out.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Emergency crews in Papua New Guinea move survivors of massive landslide to safer ground See in context

I worked as a helicopter pilot in PNG circa 1990-91. To answer NBs question consider that in the highlands where this slide occurred it rains daily an average of 19mm per day during much of the year. The mountains are mostly limestone karst that is slowly dissolved by water. There are rivers in the highlands that disappear into big holes in the limestone, only to reappear as a jet of water shooting out of a sheer cliff some kilometers away. The water eroded a layer and made its own tunnel through the rock. The land is wildly vertical and that steep terrain combined with equatorial heat and humidity means daily intense rain and thunderstorms.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Shrine honors cats at Japan island where they outnumber humans See in context

Absolutely. Cats don't forage for food, they hunt from instinct whether they're hungry or not, that's why cat owners who let their cats out are really irresponsible. Unlike indoor cats, feral cats crap everywhere and anywhere and are absolutely unsanitary.

Female cats who have not been spayed hunt out of instinct. If they are owned cats they bring their kills back to their owners much as they would bring their kills back to their clowder to share. Spaying greatly reduces their urge to hunt. Neutered males who are owned cats, meaning they are fed regularly, generally do not hunt. They are more like Garfield. They lay around all day (and watch Catflix)

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Shrine honors cats at Japan island where they outnumber humans See in context

Cats kill everything around whether fed or not. Maybe you don't know much about cats, Desert Tortoise. Even if the urge to kill were reduced by 90%, with that kind of population density not much else will survive. Most cat owners are probably more irresponsible about their animals effect on the environment than most dog owners, and that says a lot.

There are a lot of factors causing a decline in some bird species but in nearly every species affected it is not cats that are killing them. Most of the bird species in decline today are not in contact with domestic cats unless you think the mountain forests, the desert or the steppe are teaming with domestic cats. What is killing birds are climate change, habitat loss and loss of apex predators that eat the critters that eat the birds (think lack of wolves in much of the US to keep the coyote population down. If you look at populations of bird species commonly found in household gardens, none of these are in decline. Some are growing in numbers.

The places where domestic cats have decimated a native bird species are small islands where the bird species evolved in a predator less environment and lost the ability to fly or any sense to defend themselves.

The average household cat is too fat and slow to hunt birds. The studies I have read show that owned cats kill maybe two birds a year. The cats I or family members have had killed a lot more small rodents than birds. Our old Persian killed mice constantly but I can only remember this one blue jay who used to dive on Blackie and peck his head ending up a meal for him. Rats and mice were much easier prey and are the bulk of a feral cat's diet.

The studies of bird predatation by cats are all done poorly. They make wild assumptions about feral cat populations and the studies simply guess at how many birds per year a feral cat eats. Worse yet are the studies based on prior studies that simply repeat the same mistaken assumptions of the earlier studies. When cameras are strapped to cats and their actual kills per week observed owned cats, meaning cats someone owns, kill a lot fewer birds than most of the studies assume. Two per year on average for an owned cat.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Posted in: Shrine honors cats at Japan island where they outnumber humans See in context

I guess there will be no birds or frogs or lizards or small mammals on that island then. Just dumb cats.

Japanese don't seem to care about native and wild animals, they let feral cats roam free to hunt the birds, lizards, frogs and anything else that moves.

If you remember the full story, the cats were brought in to keep the mouse and rat population under control to protect the silkworms grown there. Looking at images of the cats they appear well fed and you can see images of locals feeding groups of cats. I don't think they have much need to forage today.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Posted in: Shrine honors cats at Japan island where they outnumber humans See in context

Lots of good looking kitties in the images.

13 ( +13 / -0 )

Posted in: Pets give companionship, cuddles and joy – and also unavoidable stresses See in context

I've heard the primary health benefit of owning a dog is being forced to take them on walks

It's much more than that. I find that I cannot help but smile whenever I'm in physical contact with one of our dogs or our cat. They flop into bed next to you and slide their nose up under your hand so you just have to pet them. And you find yourself smiling as you do. One of my dogs knows how to get his nose under my hand and flip my hand up so it lands on the back of his head, then he slides the rest of his body up next to my leg. It is very restful. Other times I will be hard at work and our Border Collie will come up beside my chair and put a paw up on my thigh by way of saying "pet me Dad". Or they will curl up at my feet under my desk, both the Border Collie and the Husky. Our cat will walk behind my legs and rub that furry body against my calves, then walk around the side of my chair and look up at me, wanting me to pick him up and hold him on my chest. He'll curl up on my chest for 10-15 minutes purring happily until something catches his attention and he's off to do other cat things. But it is just impossible to not smile when your cat is purring in your arms his eyes closed in obvious pleasure as you rub his cheeks or under his chin.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Hungary will seek to opt out of NATO efforts to support Ukraine, Orbán says See in context

Yup, it's been about 79 years since we had a World War, the timing is Perfect, the new generations never experienced it and the those who did are about to depart.

A direct result of the NATO alliance.

The original Common Market, it's evolution into the EU, and multilateral trade in general are likewise a big part of the reason there has not been a world war since 1945. The idea of Bretton Woods was that economic connections and prosperity would remove the reasons for wars.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Posted in: More than 300 buried in Papua New Guinea landslide, local media report See in context

I used to fly helicopters over this region circa 1990-91. It rains pretty much every day and averages about 19 mm of rain a day. It is the most rugged terrain imaginable.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Hungary will seek to opt out of NATO efforts to support Ukraine, Orbán says See in context

Hungary should stop wasting the rest of NATO and the EU member's time and leave both organizations. It is obvious his priorities are opposed to those of the other western allies. He's just a Russian stooge.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Posted in: Japanese dog of 'Doge' meme fame dies See in context

Rest in peace Kabosu. You were deeply loved and brought your human mom great joy.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Posted in: China rebukes Japan, South Korea lawmakers visiting Taiwan See in context

China urged South Korea to take "practical actions" to safeguard overall interests

That one sentence sums up the danger in doing business with China. They will try to leverage business interests to coerce other nations tp do China's bidding. Free democratic nations need to divest from China.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: China rebukes Japan, South Korea lawmakers visiting Taiwan See in context

Beijing has an opportunity to learn from Taiwan, which is a safer, freer, richer by any measurement, country. 

Taiwan's wealth and freedom are a standing reproach to the rigid orthodoxy and controlling nature of the CCP. Taiwan is proof that the CCP is not as the CCP contends essential to China's success and this very clear fact drives the CCP absolutely crazy.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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