Gongol.com Archives: January 2007
Brian Gongol

January 11, 2007

Science and Technology A history of the mobile phone

Business and Finance Bank of England raises rates again
Trying to hold off inflation -- but scaring and surprising borrowers and economists alike

Humor and Good News WKRP in Cincinnati comes out on DVD in April

Socialism Doesn't Work Eminent-domain abuse continues in earnest following Kelo decision

Business and Finance Russian-Belorussian feud over oil pipelines makes trouble for Europe
The fickleness of politics in oil-producing countries (nearly all of the major exporters are experiencing some form of turbulence) creates considerably more risk of trouble for other countries in the immediate future than any long-term concerns about climate change (which may very well be sufficient reason for concern in the long run)

News "There will be no military solution in Iraq"
Senator Hagel suggests that the only solution is to move US troops to Iraq's borders to make sure no one else (like Iran) gets funny. Others are also very pessimistic about the military options available.

News "Curious George" illustrators barely escaped from the Nazis
Husband-wife duo were Germans who lived in Paris in 1940 and barely made it out -- on bicycles -- before the Nazis arrived

Humor and Good News "Republicans sued for breach of Contract with America"

Iowa Cityview's "Best of Des Moines" survey
There's an opening on page 5 for "Best radio personality" that could use a couple of votes for "Brian Gongol"...

Agriculture North Korea to try feeding itself on meat from giant rabbits
A German breeder has come up with a way to raise rabbits that weigh 23 pounds apiece. And since they breed, well, like rabbits, they're potentially a very quick way to produce meat for lots of hungry mouths. It's not a completely foreign idea -- the USDA has regulations on rabbit meat, and it's been an American foodstuff for some time (though it's certainly not mainstream). The idea is novel, but it has a big problem: North Korea has been suffering from food shortages, crop failures, and famine for several years, and there hasn't even been enough grain production to feed the human mouths they have. Since animal meat is notoriously inefficient at converting plant calories into human ones, then increasing meat production in North Korea without vastly improving the way that country produces grains would actually result in a net loss of food for the people.

Humor and Good News The greatest public service the New York Times has ever performed
Forget the Pentagon Papers, publishing a list of fifteen questions couples should discuss before marriage could probably preserve more human happiness than anything else the Old Gray Lady has ever done. Little things that contribute in small ways to many people's happiness can mean a lot -- like the invention of Ramen noodles.

Humor and Good News "For Better or For Worse" comic strip to test unusual hybrid old/new approach
The strip reaches its 28th anniversary this year, and the creator is backing off a little on her schedule but will continue producing some new strips

Graphics Buzz the Tower

Water News Lewis and Clark project could get more money from Congress

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