The Day We Fight Back (against the NSA)

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NOAH (2014)

Hollywood has a brand new film in post production based on the biblical story of Noah and the great flood. Simply titled "Noah" and directed by Darren Aronofsky, this would mark the first time in my memory that Hollywood is testing the waters by reaching out to a worldwide demographic of different religious faiths.

The story of Noah and the flood is of course shared by Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Baha'i and many other smaller faiths.

The character of Noah will be played by Russell Crowe, and his wife, "Naameh", will be played by Jennifer Connelly.

What's realy interesting to me is how they even incorporated Methuselah in to the story line who will be played by Anthony Hopkins. This tells me that whoever wrote the story, obviously has a good knowledge of what the name Methuselah means in the first place and how he was related to Noah.

Emma Stone is in it as well, which makes the cast quite an interesting line-up to say the least.

I'm really curious to see how this film will do at the box office and if it might be the start of a new wave of family-based action films. The film is due out in 2014.

Director Darren Aronofsky has a fantastic resume, but really made a name for himself with the directing of the film, "Black Swan"(2010)that starred Natalie Portman and also "The Wrestler"(2008), which starred Mickey Rourke.

97-year-old man paints with MS Paint

I ran across this story on a 97-year-old gentleman who paints using MS Paint running on a Windows 95 OS. Quite amazingly, he paints with exquisite skill and detail, pixel by pixel, and he likes to include those visible pixels with his artwork when he has it printed out.

What is even more amazing, is that the gentleman suffers from macular degeneration which renders him partially blind.

Watch the video below and pass it on - it's a beautiful story.

My nostalgia...

I made this video as an intro for my YouTube channel. It's quite mixed in regards to what's there to see, however, I do have a really big percentage of it dedicated to the late 70s and 80s television.

I add to the site regularly, so be sure to subscribe and send in any requests from what you might want to see.

This channel is especially fun to look at if you grew up in the 70s and 80s.

Gettysburg: 150 years later

The American Civil War took place one and a half centuries ago now and we are, although small in number, remembering that war. It was by far the worst military action the United States has been involved in not just because of where it took place or the sheer number of deaths involved, but because of why it was fought in the first place.

What makes the American Civil War so different from any other war in our history is that it was a fight among Americans over issues that remained unsettled, and pent-up hostilities over the issues of slavery that was just waiting to explode, and it did. There were issues such as Federal powers, which included granting more executive powers. The rights of States to pass laws of their own, lowering tariffs that were imposed harshly on the South, the right to move slavery into the new territories to the west.

Whether it was slavery, taxes and tariffs or states's rights, explaining the Civil War with one single issue is ludicrous, and saying that all of those men who died, which was well over 600,000 men, fought over slavery as the chief cause is very misleading.

There were no rallying cries from the boys in blue yelling, "Let's free the slaves!" and there were no boys in butternut or gray crying, "We will defend our rights for slavery!" - it just didn't happen. While you will find the politician in the South (and sometimes North) defending the rights of slavery as protected under the U.S. Constitution, he would have been correct. Slavery was legal under the law, and it was legal in the United States and existed long before the Confederate States of America was ever conceived.

The fact is that slavery existed in all of the colonies at one time with the last Northern state ending it in the 1840s. From Maryland to Florida and west to Texas, you'll find slavery continued due to the climate and long growing season and for the production of Cotton and other crops that generated so much revenue. This money just didn't go into the pockets of the big plantation owners. The money from slavery made it into all of the U.S. economy as a whole and helped fuel the North as it progressed with more rail lines and more industry. The cotton, which was sold to Great Britain helped them in their own economy.

While we are familiar with the 'Agrarian South and Industrial North' comparison, that is generally misleading. In fact there were more farms in the North than the South at the start of the war. It's a fact, and you're more than free to research this yourself. The farms in the North were much smaller and mainly used for individual families. The South of course had larger farms and plantations that would raise large amounts of whichever produce they were going for whether it was corn, tobacco, cotton, peas,sugar cane, sweet potatoes and so forth.

The North had a much larger infrastructure in regards to metal works than the south and more importantly the North had a seemingly inexhaustible supply of man power of both White and Black soldiers. While it is true the South had a small number of Black soldiers fighting, there were no units or any official declaration allowing them to fight until the war was on its last leg.

Nevertheless, it is important to note that the South with its limited resources and man power was able to hold back a superior sized army for four long years. They were outnumbered four to one in many cases yet they somehow held on. That in itself is an amazing feat of willpower and ingenuity.

It is a terrible shame that wars and killing sometimes bring out the best capabilities in man. Much like the famous Battle of Thermopylae in ancient Greece, we often don't realize what our potential is until someone comes along to destroy it.

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