Sunday, November 07, 2004

Lazy days

We're just staying around the house this weekend. The manuscript went off on Thursday, so Monday I'll start up the CYA experiments. In the meantime I just want to hang around, get the last election toxins out, and be with the boys. The weather has been very cool and even a bit rainy today, so I think we're going to head over to one of Munich's massive indoor pools.

I have been following the story of Arafat's illness and the impending strike on Fallujah, but not with anything like my pre-election interest. Regnum Crucis has a well-spoken Red State perspective on the election and the subsequent liberal dissections of what happened. All I would say is that the misconceptions--and real anger-- seem to have been going in both directions. Not good for a country at war. My main feeling about the election was that it was 75% about committed party identity-- a replay of election 2000-- and the deciding 25% was about all sorts of things including differences in deeply held moral convictions. The stoking of those convictions was electorally potent, but does make people of different beliefs a little bit nervous. Again, not good for a country at war. Mission accomplished.

And anyway, it doesn't make it suck any less.

Also a few science stories. The flyby of Titan seems not to have resolved what exactly the Huygens probe is going to land on (or splash into) in when it falls to the surface near Christmas time. I am trying to get a post together about the significance of liquid water in exobiology (and why therefore Titan is of secondary interest compared to Mars or Europa). Titan is basically Los Angeles on ice, with smog in the air and tar pits on the ground. No possibility of life there.

There was a story two weeks ago about giving fluoxitene (Prozac) to mice with advanced pregnancies. Their offspring subsequently score very high on anxiety tests. I have not yet gone to the paper, but my instincts are that this will fall in the realm of the Aspartame and bladder cancer tests in rats- wrong dose for too long a time, human medical implication uncertain.

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