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February 2012

Letters to the editor, February 2012

This a traditional letter column. You are encouraged to write a letter of comment on anything that you find worthy of comment. It will (may) be published in this column along with my reply. As editor I reserve the right to delete material; however I will not alter the undeleted material. E-mail to me that solely references the contents of this site will be assumed to be publishable mail. All other e-mail is assumed to be private. And, of course, anything marked not for publication is not for publication. Oh yes, letters of appreciation for the scholarly resources provided by this site will be handled very discreetly. This page contains the correspondence for February 2012.

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From: glenn deane
Date: 11 February 2012
Subj: The great flood

Would a water canopy encircling the earth as mentioned in the bible and chinese and other sources that inundated tbe earth effect c14 dating enough to render it useless on items existing prior to its positioning in the atmosphere?

The water canopy isn’t mentioned as such in the Bible; it is a relatively modern idea advanced by Whitcomb & Morris in 1961. There are a lot of problems with the idea; the physics simply doesn’t work. Be that as it may, you can always postulate that it was kept in place by a miracle. There are similar problems with the geology; there are no evidences of the kind of sedimentation that would result from a world wide deluge. Likewise three are problems with getting all of those animals and plants redistributed around the world afterwords.

None of that matters if you are willing to accept that the flood and the state of Earth before the flood was miraculously maintained by God. That pretty much answers your question; pre-flood Earth had a different physics. C14 is a petty detail in the midst of all those miracles.

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From: Peter Neilson
Date: 12 February 2012
Subj: treating your “whatever it is”

Simple, like pneumonia? Pneumonia is not simple. There are several kinds. Treatment varies. Its advantage, if one might call it that, is its occasional similarity to point 4 in the veterinary paragraph below.

Last time I was in the hospital the docs weren’t initially sure what I had. It turned out to be Spotty Mountain Rocket Fever, but they started by treating me for three different things at once. I think the medicines they gave me all battled with each other, with little concern over ancillary casualties.

It’s all so much clearer with livestock. (You surely know this stuff and so do your in-laws.) The critter is not doing so well, and the options are simple:

1. Apply tincture of time and see what happens; or
2. Use routine treatment known to work for this condition; or
3. Try heroic or experimental treatment; pray a lot; pay a lot; or
4. Load the .38 with a hollowpoint and start up the backhoe. (* Note)

We just put about $1200 into a sweet 20-year-old Haflinger mare who gravely injured her near eye. She’s now recovering well from eye-removal surgery. We anticipate being able to use her to help children understand dealing with handicaps.

Meanwhile, we just learned that two of our best ponies are probably over 30, rather than the 26 or so we had imagined. A colleague who, as a teen, worked with their former owner told us, “Frosty’s my age. And I’m 31.” Frosty’s a medicine-hat pinto, nearly all white, and Teddy Bear (whose picture is here is a grey. Those white colors are supposed to have hoof issues and problems with tumors, but both are still going strong. Sometimes I trot Frosty in hand along the driveway. He and I are two old geezers getting along just fine, thank you. Frosty gallops in pasture without difficulty. * Note: There are technical reason for the particular choice of instruments in this procedure, and technical details not discussed here. Other choices are possible, some of which leave the outcome more in doubt.

Well I surely am glad that you got me up to date on these matters. I’ve been wondering about some of them. I keep fearing I’m going to over hear somebody saying, “Richard’s been doing poorly lately. I guess we’re just going to have to put him down.” I know nobody would do that but I’m thinking hard on getting a hearing aid.
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From: Ben Turner
Date: 15 February 2012
Subj: Davey…

Sent from my iPhone

I’m answering on the off hand chance that this email was something real from a real person that didn’t get out right.

I’m so disappointed. I keep hoping for real people on the internet and it never works out.

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From: Peter Neilson
Date: 12 February 2012
Subj: Catalan

Difficult to detect February’s language. My initial guess was Haitian Creole. Catalan is spoken by Spaniards, French and Sardines. Who would have guessed?

I suppose Sardines have an oily accent.
“Life is like a tin of sardines. We’re all of us looking for the key.” Attributed to Alan Bennett in Beyond the Fringe. Alan has recently been getting older, and is now roughly your age, according to Wikipedia.
Until 2011 I was immortal and had scarcely aged over the decades. Somebody changed the program on me. I think the problem is that they found that key.
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From: Sean
Date: 3 February 2012
Subj: From one 2nd MAW Marine to another


I just wanted to write you an email and tell you how much I enjoyed reading your stories from being in the Marines on your website. I joined the Marines back in December of 2003 (I went to MCRD San Diego as well), and ran across your website right before going to boot camp. After going through boot camp, combat training, and my data communication school, I ended up in MCAS Cherry Point, assigned to Marine Air Control Squadron 2. Do you remember the unit you were with in Cherry Point? Based off what you wrote, and what I read elsewhere, it sounds like you were assigned to Marine Air Support Squadron 1, but I’m not entirely sure. I’ve been at Cherry Point for almost 8 years now, aside from 18 months at MCAS New River, and I have to say your stories made me appreciate this base even more. I hope you have a good weekend.

Semper Fi!

You’re right, it was MASS 1. I wonder how much it has changed over the years. Lot’s of new equipment I suppose. Scratch that. Some equipment that was new ten years ago. I don’t suppose that’s changed that much over the years. In the old corps it was understood that the army got the best equipment because they needed it to make up for the handicap of not being marines.

Semper Fi!
Richard H.

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From: Kathy Jehlicka
Date: 30 January 2012
Subj: A letter to you.

I’m back from work!!!! Wow!!!!!!! I’m so got tired from my work….. Uh…. I’m very glad that I can write to you! Whether I can will get acquainted with you more close? My name is Mallory, I am not assured in true relations while people don’t learn each other more close. I don’t speak in a detail about me, whether simply I wish receive answer from you and we can to learn each other more close. Now I want only one, that you answered me. Write to me on my e-mail address:

I shall wait!

I don’t know who you were writing to, but I’m quite sure it wasn’t me.
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From: Rev.Raymond Neil
Date: 30 January 2012
Subj: order request

Hello Good Day,

 This is Rev.Raymond Neil, With regards to your Company i am sending  this email Regards to order some *(Cattle Chut)* i will like to  know the type and sizes you have in stock and get me the sales price  of one so that i will tell you the quantity i will be ordering, and if you accept credit card as a form of payment.hope to read from you soon about my order request….

 With Kind Regards
 Rev.Raymond Neil

My dear sir,

I would be glad to fill your order. After the economy, indeed the survival of our nation, depends upon the revival of commerce. However I am concerned. What is a man of God doing with cattle chutes? You wouldn’t be running your parishioners through corrals would you? It’s one thing to bring people to God, but I don’t think you are supposed to be using cattle prods.

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From: Tonya Mckernan
Date: 27 January 2012
Subj: waiting for your photos.

Hey! I’m I am Rama, doing gymnastics since childhood and I love swimming. Well .. it’s Difficult to write I’ve got shiny smile and attractive body.

PS Look through your photos, and I wanna meet you.

write me something interesting about you.

Would you be interested in my collection of toenail clippings?
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From: David M. Fitzpatrick
Date: 25 January 2012
Subj: Roger and Elaine piece

Just curious — are you the original author of that? It appears everywhere but never with a byline, and I’m curious as to its origin. One guy claims it was a Dave Barry piece.

I’m not the author and I’ve never had any reliable information about who the author might be. I suspect it is a Dave Barry piece. It certainly reads like something he would have written.
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From: Joe Blow
Date: 15 January 2012
Subj: re;v


I’m pleased that you like v. How do you feel about the rest of the alphabet?
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From: Lee R. Piazza
Date: 16 January 2012

I seem to be making a connection between Tales from the White Hart and Harter. So I assume it comes back without anyone on board and of course you know where it’s been because there’s a gizmo that records where it’s been and gives you a read-out. Arthur C. Clarke would be proud.

That’s pretty much it. We did get somebody back once. It’s sort of sad, really. Fred was a chap who hung around the shop and who kept trying to be part of the operation. We let him sweep up. We learned not to let turn the lights on and off – letting Fred near switches of any kind was a recipe for disaster. The thing is, he kept asking for the chance to do something besides sweeping floors. Finally we gave him a chance to take a jaunt in the time machine.

He doesn’t hang around here anymore. Mostly you can find him the local bar where he drinks cheap gin and tells everybody how much me loves Big Brother. Just remember,


… continued on next rock

Well, I guess I won’t be asking you to shine my shoes.

That’s okay, you probably couldn’t afford my rates.
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From: Shardeecpt
Date: 24 January 2012
Subj: Accuracy of radiocarbon dating!

Read your short report on radiocarbon dating dated March 1999. So what do you have to prove the accuracy of the theory back to the millions of years they you state the planets age to be? If is supposed to be scientific proof, why are the words “presumed” and “assumed” used so much in its discussion?

I don’t want to be uncharitable, but you seem to be a bit confused. In March 1999 I did publish a short article by John Stockwell about radiocarbon dating. However:

(1) The words, “presumed” and “assumed” don’t appear in the article at all.

(2) The age of planets is not mentioned at all.

(3) Radiocarbon dating is irrelevent for dating the age of planets.

In short, your comments are completely unrelated to the article you mention. Perhaps you had some other article in mind and were confused about the date and title. Perhaps you could give me more information about what article you thought you were commenting upon.

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From: Tom Henley
Date: 1 February 2012
Subj: Example: unwanted photos ot your secret moves!

Did you know that there are hi tech software tool that makes pictures of = you, while you are browsing the internet?

Easy example:

[snip dubious link]

In that photography you are playnig with your genitalias in dirty job!

Confirm, that shining face in the picture is yours!

Chortle. I expect that if I clicked on that link I might well find myself a victim of a dirty job. It seems that your little scam depends upon your victims (a) playing with themselves whilst surfing the web, (b) being stupid enough to click on that link, and (c) being really guillible. All things considered I’d say that the odds in your favor are pretty good.
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From: Amy
Date: 23 January 2012
Subj: Densa Openings

Check this out.

I suspect that you didn’t mean to send this to me; however a google search on Densa Openings is quite illuminating if you are into obscure medical problems. I was hoping that Densa Openings were Eastern European chess openings.
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This page was last updated February 15, 2012.

Richard Harter’s World
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February 2012