America Just Can’t Make It Anymore.

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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USA industrial economy

The statement in the title is not true, except that it is.

If you are a little confused stay with me and let me clarify.

The United States used to be the industrial power house of the world. Its industries generated unprecedented wealth for the country, creating the world’s first self-made billionaires and productive wealth creating jobs galore for everyone. The whole country prospered.

Today, however, the United States has become the world’s second biggest importer of goods. Worse than that, even though America still exports billions of dollars’ worth in oil, consumer goods and automotive products, it imports even more. This creates a trade deficit ($471 billion according to recent figures).

US Trade Deficit

So what are all these imports into the US?

Well, they include industrial machinery and equipment ($681 billion), automotive vehicles, parts, and engines ($309 billion), miscellaneous private services, primarily financial services ($201 billion), cell phones ($90 billion), travel passenger services ($86 billion), pharmaceuticals ($84 billion), computers ($65 billion), chemicals ($61 billion), other transportation services ($59 billion), computer accessories ($57 billion), telecommunications equipment ($54 billion), royalties and license fees services ($42 billion), apparel ($49 billion), petroleum products ($48 billion), fuel oil ($44 billion), industrial supplies ($29 billion), U.S. Government service imports primarily defense ($25 billion), fish ($18 billion), fruit ($13 billion), and vegetables ($11 billion).

Cartoon imports

If you are a bit shell-shocked by all those figures let me phrase it a bit differently using as examples the types of goods you would tend to buy.

  • 100% (almost) of the shoes bought in the U.S. come from China, Vietnam, Indonesia and Mexico;
  • 90% of white goods (washers, fridges, etc.) and consumer electronics are imported;
  • 85% of household furniture is imported;
  • 80% of cars on U.S. roads come from Canada (31%), Japan (24%), Germany (16%) and Mexico (12%); and,
  • 65% of U.S. clothing is imported from China (37%), Vietnam (9.4%), Indonesia (7.2%) and Bangladesh (6.7%).

Probably the saddest part is that even things you thought were “American” are now actually made overseas and imported.

I remember while on a business trip to the US many, many years ago I bought a gift for the young son of a friend of mine. He was a big sports enthusiast so I reckoned that one of the most iconic symbols of sport from America would be a baseball. I bought one in Wal-Mart. It was marked with all the different holding positions for the various ways to throw a baseball (fast ball, curve ball and all that). The perfect gift.

I gave it to him on my return feeling ever so pleased with myself. The kid opened it, showed momentary delight, then looked up at me accusingly. “It says ‘Made in China'” he told me.

Baseball made in China

But it’s not only baseballs. Similar types of product that you would think are all-American, like Converse All Stars, Levi’s, Huffy bicycles, televisions, Monopoly, Etch-a-Sketch, Radio Flyer wagons, Barbie dolls, and last but by no means least, most of those American flags just ain’t American no more.

modern monopoly board

It really doesn’t have to be this way. Apple, for example, doesn’t have to become the richest company in the world by manufacturing its products in China and storing its vast hoards of cash overseas.

Or does it?

Everything on the lists above could still be made in the US and surpluses exported to other countries. But the US government and its moronic bureaucrats are spending their time and our money thinking up new ways, not to help American businesses, but to add ever-increasing amounts of rules, regulations and bureaucracy on to American companies.

American businesses can no longer compete, because their own government has ensured that the deck is stacked against them.

In the mind of a bureaucrat losing a million productive wealth creating jobs, for example, in the automotive industry, and replacing them with a million more administrative jobs that cost the country money evens things out.

It doesn’t. Simple math will tell you that. Every time it happens things get worse and America gets poorer.

So America just can’t make it anymore, but not because China has stolen the jobs. It’s because the US government bureaucrats gave them away.

Put the blame where it should be.

StimulusBureaucrats

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Some Baby Facts Included Today.

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Yes, baby facts and a lot of grown up facts too in this selection.

Hope you find something of interest.

Enjoy.

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did you know2

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In spite of their crying sounds,

babies tears don’t begin to flow until they

are around 4 to 13 weeks old.

 baby crying

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Anne Parrish, an American writer was browsing

in a Paris bookstore one day when she came across

a book called, ‘Jack Frost and Other Stories’.

She began to tell her husband how she loved

the book when she was a child.

He took the book, opened it,

and inside the cover were written the words

“Anne Parish, 209 N Weber Street, Colorado”.

 Anne_Parrish,_children's_author,_head_shot

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The Titanic had its own newspaper

called The Atlantic Daily Bulletin.

 The Atlantic Daily Bulletin

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The term ‘Geek’ first showed up in northern Britain

in 1876, when it was used to refer to a fool.

Americans tweaked the meaning and by 1957 it meant

‘an unsociable and over-diligent student’.

Of course, once computers turned up in the 80’s,

‘geek’ took on a second meaning as

‘an expert in computers or science’.

 Bill_Gates_Paul_Allen_1981

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The first modern lighter was invented by

German chemist Johann Wolfgang Dobereiner in 1823,

three years BEFORE the match was invented

by John Walker in England.

 Johann Wolfgang Dobereiner

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One of the most iconic military vehicles of all time has to

be the Willys MB Jeep, manufactured from 1941 to 1945.

This small four-wheel drive utility vehicle has

a maximum speed of up to 65 mph (105 km/h)

and an operational range of 300 miles (almost 500 km).

It was used by several countries in WWII,

including the US, UK, France and the Soviet Union.

 Willys MB Jeep

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Technically Europe is not a continent,

it’s separation from Asia was actually a Greek idea.

 Europe map

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While filming Lord of the Rings

in the mountains of New Zealand,

Sean Bean refused a helicopter ride to a set

that was high in the mountains

due to his fear of flying.

He instead hiked up to the set

in his full Boromir armor

every day that they shot up there.

 boromir

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In Indonesia the government has restricted some

lanes of traffic to only cars with 3 or more people

to try to cut down overcrowding on the roads.

Some poor people from the city outskirts

take advantage of this law by offering drivers a

Professional Hitchhiker service,

so they can drive in the fast lanes.

 Indonesia traffic jam

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Genghis Khan believed that a man could be measured

by the number of children he fathered

and consequently his harem included thousands of

women with whom he had a great many children.

So many, in fact, that geneticists have found

that roughly 8% of men in Asia carry his genetic legacy

in their Y-chromosome.

 Genghis Khan  descendents map

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127,000 trees are chopped down every day

in order to keep up with the global demand

for toilet paper.

Holy S***!!!

 toilet paper

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The original ER movie was to be directed

by Steven Spielberg until he became more interested

in another of Crichton’s projects: Jurassic Park.

Spielberg Jurassic Park

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Forty-Four Mouth-Watering Facts About Curry.

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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I’ve done ‘peanut butter‘ and ‘chocolate‘ and ‘coffee‘ in other posts. Today it is another fasab food favorite, the curry.

A curry, properly made, has to be one of the most delicious foods in the world.

I have spent many happy evenings with friends enjoying this delicacy in one form or another. Personally I like it with some naan bread or sometimes with rice. Either way is socially acceptable and extremely tasty.

Mouth watering already?

Very good, let’s get straight to the facts.

Enjoy.

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dishes of curry

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The word curry comes from a Tamil word ‘kari’ or ‘karil’, meaning spices or sautéd vegetables.

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The meaning changed when Portuguese traders used it for the sauces with which rice was served.

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Essentially, the term curry was invented by the English administrators of the East Indian Trading Co. and later continued by British government employees.

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The British army in India further changed the meaning as its liking for hot sauces introduced the modern idea of curries being hot.

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Surprisingly, the term ‘curry’ isn’t used very much in India. There are many types of curry-style dishes, which have their own characteristic regional variations.

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Curry Powder is a mix of spices, rather than a spice in its own right. It usually consists of turmeric, coriander, cardamom, cumin, sweet basil, and red pepper.

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Some of the most common types of curry are ‘Korma’, ‘Massala’, ‘Dhansak’, ‘Phall’, ‘Rogan Josh’, ‘Dopiaza’, ‘Madras’ and ‘Vindaloo’.

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Curry is said to have a number of valuable health benefits, including the prevention of cancer, protection against heart disease, reducing Alzheimer’s disease symptoms, easing pain and inflammation, boosting bone health, protecting the immune system from bacterial infections, and increasing the liver’s ability to remove toxins from the body.

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In addition to being an established and firm favorite in Britain. and increasing popular throughout Europe and the United States, curry forms a major element of the diets of several Asian countries including India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Maldives, Burma, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, China, Japan and Fiji.

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Chili (or Chilli) is the most popular spice in the world and can help combat heart attacks and strokes and extends blood coagulation times preventing harmful blood clots.

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Contrary to common western belief, curries are not always ‘hot’, they can be mild, medium and hot.

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curry with rice

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The earliest known curry was made in Mesopotamia in around 1700 BC, the recipe for meat in a spicy sauce appearing on tablets found near Babylon.

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The Scoville scale is the measurement of the pungency (spicy heat) of chili peppers or other spicy foods.

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The ‘Bhut Jolokia Chilli Pepper’ (also known as the ‘Naga Jolokia’), is the hottest pepper in the world, accompanied with its own health warning! This pepper is also known as the ‘Ghost Chilli’ or ‘Ghost Pepper’, and is grown in the Indian states of Assam, Nagaland and Manipur.

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The first commercial curry powder appeared in about 1780.

In Britain Indian food now surpasses Chinese food in popularity, with Indian restaurants outnumbering Chinese restaurants by two to one.

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The word ‘balti’ means bucket. Balti is more a style of cooking than one particular curry.

In specialist ‘Balti Houses’ the balti is a meal in itself which contains both meat and vegetables and is eaten straight from the karahi using curled up pieces of naan bread. In standard Indian restaurants the balti is more of a stir-fried curry containing plenty of fried green peppers and fresh cilantro (also known as coriander).

South Indian food is more spicy than North Indian food.

The first curry recipe in English appeared in Hannah Glasse’s ‘The Art Of Cookery’ in 1747.

The world’s biggest ever curry was a 13 tonne Biryani, including 187lb of chilies and 6600lb of rice. It took 60 chefs to make in New Delhi in June 2008. And required three cranes to move the container and a 3ft high furnace to cook it!

In Western Europe and the U K, curry powders available contain more turmeric than anything else, and tend to be toned down to palates used to bland food.

curry with naan bread

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The tallest poppadom stack in the world stands at a massive 282 poppadoms. The record was set by a chef from the Jali Indian Restaurant in Blackpool.

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In 2008, Bath and North East Somerset Council advised a man to sprinkle curry powder on his wife’s grave to keep squirrels and deer away.

Tim Stobbs, aged 42 years, currently holds the world record for munching an impressive 15 poppadoms in 5 minutes! The annual World Championships, in aid of Cancer Research UK Scotland, is held every year at St Andrews University.

There are about 10,000 Indian restaurants serving curry in the UK, the vast majority of which are run by people from Bangladesh, not India.

To make a ‘hot’ curry mild, just add some coconut milk.

The word ‘masala’ means spice mix.

In 1846, William Makepeace Thackeray wrote ‘A Poem To Curry’, as part of his Kitchen Melodies.

Britain’s first curry house, called the Hindustani Coffee House and located in London’s Portman Square, opened in 1809. Now there are more curry houses in London, England than in Mumbai, India.

Chili can help combat heart attacks and strokes.

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One of the hottest curry dishes ever made is known as the Bit Spicy 3 Chili Phall which is even hotter than the infamous ‘Chicken Naga’, made with a high volume of Naga pepper seeds. More than 100 times hotter than jalapeño peppers!

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People crave a curry because the spices arouse and stimulate the taste buds.

curry powder

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Vindaloo was originally a Portuguese dish which took its name from the two main ingredients which were ‘vinho’, wine/wine vinegar, and ‘alhos’, garlic. Over time it was spiced up, hotted up and otherwise changed by the indigenous peoples of the ex-Portuguese colony of Goa.

The ‘Big Jim’, a large chili hailing from New Mexico, currently holds the world record for the largest chili ever grown. This plant frequently produces chilies that are over a foot in length, which is hugely impressive considering that the plant itself never grows more than two feet!

The town of North Curry is in Somerset while West Curry is in Cornwall.

Madras and pathia are both hot and sour dishes. Kashmiri a more subtle and creamy dish usually made with lychees or bananas – or both.

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Scientists at Nottingham Trent University have discovered that people begin to crave for a curry because the spices arouse and stimulate the taste buds.

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One in seven curries sold in the UK is a chicken tikka masala, making it the most popular Indian restaurant dish in the UK. It is thought to have originated in Britain after an enterprising Indian chef had the idea of adding a tomato and onion paste to the grilled chicken to satisfy the British preference for food that isn’t dry.

The largest naan bread ever made was a whopping 2.75m in diameter and contained meat dumplings – the equivalent of 167 normal sized naan breads. The bread took over ten hours to finish and required twelve chefs, 30kg mutton, 125kg flour, 16kg onion and 90kg of water to cook it.

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Southeastern Asian cultures have always mixed a number of spices to flavor their dishes, usually according to recipes handed down from generation to generation.

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A common way to categorize Thai curry is by the color of the curry paste used to make the curry dish. Green and red curry paste are the most typical. Yellow and sour curries (also sometimes known as orange curry, gaeng sohm) are also well known. Each has its own particular combination of herbs and spices to make up the curry paste that makes it unique.

‘Panang’ and ‘masaman’ curry are probably the most popular Thai curries in the West, because of their rich tastes.

Finally, if you are eating a curry which is just too hot for you, don’t drink water, that only makes it hotter!

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The Last Post – Of 2013.

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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The Last Post Of 2013

31st December has rolled round again and so it’s time to bring 2013 to a close.

This is always an appropriate time to reflect on what has happened during the previous twelve months.

These are just some of the things I remember about 2013. It’s a personal choice and you may have thought of other things that could have been mentioned, but, in spite of the fact that the time seems to fly, a lot happens in the space of a year so only so much can be included.

Hope you find something of interest.

Enjoy.

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The Weather

As good a place as any to start since the weather is a constant topic of conversation at all times of the year.

Statistically 2013 appears to have been a year where major weather events were at a minimum. Not much comfort to those at the extreme end of that distribution curve and who suffered hardship and discomfort as the result of extreme weather.

But here are some of what I think are the most memorable weather events of 2013.

In January Malaysia, Indonesia and South-East Africa saw major flooding events caused by monsoon and other heavy rainstorms. It also saw Australia’s hottest month on record.

Malaysia floods

February saw the largest snowfall from a single storm ever recorded in the North-eastern United States. Major winter storms also affected central US states and even the Texas panhandle.

snow-snow-snow

In March New Zealand saw its worst drought in more than 30 years. China had its second warmest recorded March temperature, while in usually sunny Spain they had their wettest March on record with three times the average for the previous three decades.

New Zealand drought 2013

Contrast was the name of the game in the US in April with California experiencing drought conditions while in the Central US there was widespread flooding.

May was the wettest ever seen in China for forty years. Indeed it was a month of extremes with more than 1 million people evacuated from their homes as Tropical Cyclone Mahasan struck Bangladesh, while in the US the widest ever observed tornado hit Oklahoma bringing more than 20 deaths and widespread devastation.

oklahoma-tornado-wallpaper-2013

June was the hottest ever, Portugal, China, Hungary, Finland, and Britain, all recorded heat-waves, and the temperature in Death Valley, California hit 129.2F (54.0C), the hottest temperature ever recorded on Earth during June.

In July in the US 19 firefighters were killed trying to contain wildfires in Prescot Arizona.

Arizona firefighters

More contrasts later in the year with the 2013 Atlantic Ocean hurricane season being one of the weakest recorded in 50 years, with no major hurricanes in the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico or the Atlantic basin. Only Ingrid and Humberto out of the 13 named storms reached hurricane strength.

In the western-north Pacific on the other hand, 30 major storms had been recorded by early November, 13 of them typhoon-strength. The biggest was typhoon Haiyan, possibly the most powerful tropical cyclone to make landfall in recorded history, which smashed into the southern Philippines, killing at least 6,000 people and wreaking massive damage.  

typhoon Haiyan 2013

The end of the year saw the focus change to Europe, where a major depression moved eastwards from northwest Scotland to southern Sweden bringing strong winds of up to 142 mph and a massive tidal surge that affected coastal areas around the North Sea. In the UK thousands of people had to evacuate their homes along the east coast, where the coastal surge was the worst since 1953 with local flooding and some houses being washed into the sea as cliffs gave way. At least six people died by the time the winds moved finally down over northeast Europe.

storms uk 2013

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Scandals

2013 has been noted as a great year for scandal and corruption. Here are some of the highlights (or low lights perhaps?).

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In the food industry we had the Aflatoxin scandal, where throughout much of Europe contaminated milk and other food products were found to be ‘infested’ with this toxin.

Major supermarket retailers were the subject of another major scandal in the UK when they were found to be selling meat products labeled “100% beef” which were actually horse meat.

horse meat scandal

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In sport several Major League Baseball players were accused of obtaining performance-enhancing drugs, specifically human growth hormone, from the now-defunct rejuvenation clinic Biogenesis of America.

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However, undoubtedly the biggest scandal of 2013 was perpetrated by the US Government.

It was discovered during 2013, as the result of documents released by whistleblower Edward Snowden, that US Government agencies, in particular the NSA, had been guilty of a widespread snooping and spying campaign, even on its own citizens.

It was reminiscent of the old Soviet Union and the KGB, but it was happening in the “Land of the Free”. The snooping projects included “PRISM”, a clandestine mass electronic surveillance data mining program that collects stored Internet communications based on demands made to Internet companies such as Google; “Dropmire”, a secret surveillance program of surveillance of foreign embassies and diplomatic staff, including those of NATO allies; “Fairview”, a secret mass surveillance program used to collect phone, internet and e-mail data in bulk from the computers and mobile telephones of foreign countries’ citizens; “Hemisphere”, a mass surveillance program conducted by US telephone company AT&T and paid for by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy and the Drug Enforcement Administration; “MUSCULAR”, a surveillance program jointly operated by Britain’s Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) and the NSA that was used to secretly break into the main communications links that connect Yahoo and Google data centers around the world; and “XKeyscore”, a formerly secret computer system used by the United States National Security Agency for searching and analyzing Internet data about foreign nationals across the world.

nsa-spying-scandal

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In 2013, the United States Department of Justice, under Attorney General Eric Holder, also came under scrutiny from the media and some members of Congress for subpoenaing phone records from the Associated Press and naming Fox News reporter, James Rosen, a “criminal co-conspirator” under the Espionage Act of 1917 in order to gain access to his personal emails and phone records.

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And the IRS was also condemned when it was revealed that it had targeted political groups applying for tax-exempt status for closer scrutiny based on their names or political themes.

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All in all a bad year for the reputation and standing of the US Government.

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In other countries perhaps the worst scandal of 2013 was “Danielgate”, a political scandal in which Mohammed VI, the King of Morocco, issued a pardon for a Spanish convicted serial child-rapist named Daniel Galván who was serving a 30 years prison sentence for the rape of at least 11 Moroccan children in Kenitra—a city where he had been living in since 2004.

The Pardon sparked unprecedented popular outrage in Morocco where several protests were held denouncing the monarch’s decision.

It was revealed later that this wasn’t the first time Mohammed VI had pardoned a convicted foreign paedophile, having pardoned Hervé Le Gloannec, a French citizen convicted of child rape and child pornography in 2006.

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In India a Ponzi scheme operated by the Saradha Group financial Group, a consortium of Indian companies that was believed to be running a wide variety of collective investment schemes, collapsed causing an estimated loss of INR 200–300 billion (US$4–6 billion) to over 1.7 million depositors.

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In politics there was the usual sex and drugs scandals during 2013. In May videos were exposed that showed Toronto Mayor Rob Ford smoking crack cocaine and commenting on political issues. Rob Ford consistently denied the existence of the video, and denied that he uses crack cocaine, remaining Mayor despite calls for him to step down. On November 5, 2013, Ford eventually admitted to smoking crack cocaine “probably in one of my drunken stupors”, and to hiding his drug abuse from his family, his staff and the people of Toronto, but pledged to continue on as Mayor.

Toronto Mayor Bob Ford

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Back in the US former member of the United States House of Representatives from New York City,  Anthony Weiner, was involved in another sexual scandal relating to sexting, or sending explicit sexual material by cell phone. First caught in the Weinergate scandal in 2011 that led to his resignation as a congressman, this idiot has learned nothing. During his attempt to return to politics as candidate for mayor of New York City,  Weiner admitted having sexted again, after more explicit pictures were published in July 2013.

Weiner Scandal Headlines

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Departures

As every year, 2013 saw many departures. Here are some of the better known faces that passed on during the year.

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Astronauts, C. Gordon Fullerton and Scott Carpenter.

astronauts fullerton-carpenter

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From politics, Ed Koch, U.S. Representative from New York (1969–1977) and Mayor of New York City (1978–1989), later a television judge in “The People’s Court”.

ed_koch 

Margaret Thatcher aka “The Iron Lady”, daughter of a greengrocer who became the first woman Prime Minister of the UK. 

 Margaret Thatcher

Hugo Chávez, Venezuelan politician and military officer and President since 1999.

Chavez

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Television and the movies also lost many well known characters including,

Conrad Bain, Canadian born and usually cast as the erudite gent, advice-spouting father or uptight, pompous neighbor, included roles in “Diff’rent Strokes”.

conrad-bain 

Michael Winner a director best known for dramatic and violent movies like “Death Wish” starring Charles Bronson.

Michael Winner 

Richard Briers, television comedy actor well known on British sitcoms such as “The Good Life” and “Ever Decreasing Circles”.

Richard Briers 

Dale Robertson who, after service during WWII in North Africa and Europe, became an actor and made his name in television Westerns in the 1950s and ’60s.

dale-robertson 

Richard Griffiths, a British character actor who came from radio and the classical stage.

Richard Griffiths 

Steve Forrest began his screen career as a small part contract player with MGM and made his name as an action man in the 1960’s and 70’s. He is a brother of star Dana Andrews.

Steve Forrest 

New Jersey-born James Gandolfini began acting in the New York theater, making his Broadway debut was in the 1992 revival of “A Streetcar Named Desire” with Jessica Lange and Alec Baldwin. James’ breakthrough role was his portrayal of Virgil the hitman in Tony Scott’s “True Romance”, but the role that made him a household name was as Tony Soprano in the award winning television series “The Sopranos”.

James-Gandolfini 

Gary David Goldberg was born in Brooklyn, New York but moved to Hollywood to try to make it as a writer. He was responsible for the hit series “Spin City”.

gary_david_goldberg 

Although Dennis Farina did not start acting until he was 37 years old, he achieved success as a character actor, often being cast as a cop or gangster.

Dennis Farina 

Eileen Brennan was a supremely gifted, versatile player who could reach dramatic depths, as exemplified in her weary-eyed, good-hearted waitress in “The Last Picture Show”, or comedy heights, as in her sadistic drill captain in “Private Benjamin”. Perhaps one of her best remembered performances was in the hit movie “The Sting” with Paul Newman and Roberts Redford and Shaw.

Eileen Brennan 

Lisa Robin Kelly first made her acting debut, at age 21, in a 1992 episode of “Married with Children”, and went on to guest-star in many popular television shows, such as “Murphy Brown”, “The X Files”, “Sisters and Silk Stalkings”. She got her biggest break in “Days Of Our Lives”.

Lisa Robin Kelly 

David Frost achieved success on both sides of the Atlantic, first in the UK and then in America. He is most remembered for his political interviews, particularly those with former US President Richard Nixon.

David_Frost 

In a film career that has extended for over four decades, Ed Lauter has starred in a plethora of film and television productions since making his big screen debut in the western “Dirty Little Billy”.

ed-lauter 

Hal Needham was the highest paid stuntman in the world. In the course of his career suffered many injuries breaking 56 bones, including his back twice, punctured a lung and knocked out a few teeth. His career has included work on 4500 television episodes and 310 feature films as a stuntman, stunt coordinator, 2nd unit director and ultimately, director. He wrote and directed some of the most financially successful action comedy films.

Hal Needham 

Robin Sachs, 61, was an English actor who made it into American television series such as “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”, “Galaxy Quest” and “Babylon 5”.

Robin Sachs 

Frank Thornton, was a British actor best remembered fot his role as “Captain Peacock” in the long running sitcom “Are You Being Served?”. He also appeared in “Last of the Summer Wine” and “Gosford Park”.

frank-thornton-capt-peacock 

Bryan Forbes, was another Briton and an accomplished actor (“The League of Gentlemen”), director (“The Stepford Wives”) and screenwriter (“Chaplin”)

brian_forbes 

Lewis Collins, was most famous and best loved for his role as action man “Bodie” in the television series “The Professionals”. He also starred in the terrorist hostage movie “Who Dares Wins” loosely based on the dramatic Iranian Embassy siege in London in 1980.

Lewis-Collins 

Paul William Walker who was killed in a car accident was an American actor and the founder of Reach Out Worldwide. He became famous in 1999 after his role in the hit film “Varsity Blues”, but later garnered fame as “Brian O’Conner” in “The Fast and the Furious” film series. His other well known works are “Eight Below”, “Running Scared”, “The Lazarus Project”, “Into the Blue”, “Joy Ride”, “She’s All That”, “Takers”, and “Hours”.

Paul-Walker 

Peter O’Toole, was a British-Irish actor with a reputation as a bit of a hell-raiser. Among his movie credits he starred in “Lawrence of Arabia”, “The Lion in Winter”, “Becket”, and “Troy”.

Peter O'Toole

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The music scene too has lost a few well known names during 2013. They include,

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Patti Page (born Clara Ann Fowler) toured the US in the late 1940s with Jimmy Joy, and notably sang with the Benny Goodman band in Chicago.

patti-page 

Patty Andrews and her sisters, Maxene and Laverne, were “The Andrews Sisters”, an American close harmony singing group of the swing and boogie-woogie eras. They accumulated 19 gold records and sales of nearly 100 million copies.

 patty_andrews_sisters

Lou Reed formed the group “The Velvet Underground” with Welsh multi-instrumentalist John Cale, second guitarist Sterling Morrison, and drummer Maureen Tucker in New York in 1965. The group soon became a part of Andy Warhol’s Factory scene, which housed a great number of experimental artists at the time.

 lou-reed

Never as famous as his namesake Elvis, Reg Presley was a British singer and songwriter. His group was called “The Troggs” and among many other hits, he composed “Love Is All Around” which was first a hit for the Troggs but made real fame by the group “Wet Wet Wet” when it featured in the movie “Four Weddings And A Funeral” and spent 15 weeks at number one in the UK charts in 1994.

reg-presley

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Sports best known departure during 2013 was former WBC world heavyweight champion boxer Ken Norton, remembered for his trilogy of fights with Muhammad Ali. He defeated Ali in their first bout by a fifteen round split-decision, a fight in which Norton famously broke Ali’s jaw. Norton also fought a classic battle with Larry Holmes over fifteen brutal rounds in 1978, a fight which ranks as one of the greatest heavyweight contests in boxing history. 

KEN_NORTON

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The world of Pubishing & Books saw several famous departures during 2013.

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Tom Clancy whose fiction works, “The Hunt for Red October”, “Patriot Games”, “Clear and Present Danger”, and “The Sum of All Fears”, have been turned into commercially successful movies with actors Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford, and Ben Affleck as Clancy’s most famous fictional character “Jack Ryan”.

Tom_Clancy_at_Burns_Library 

Robert Kee, British writer, journalist and broadcaster best known for his historical works on World War II and Ireland.

Robert Kee 

Steven Utley, was an American writer of poems, humorous essays and other non-fiction, but best known for his science fiction stories.

Steven Utley 

Dave Hunt was a Christian Evangelist speaker, radio commentator and author, in full-time ministry from 1973 until his death. He wrote numerous books on theology, prophecy, cults, and other religions, including critiques of Catholicism, Islam, Mormonism, and Calvinism, among others.

dave hunt 

Richard Matheson, was an American author and screenwriter, primarily in the fantasy, horror, and science fiction genres. Known best as the author of “I Am Legend”, a 1954 horror novel that has been adapted for the screen four times, five more of his novels or short stories have also been adapted as major motion pictures, namely “The Shrinking Man”, “Hell House”, “What Dreams May Come”, “Bid Time Return” (filmed as “Somewhere in Time”), “A Stir of Echoes” and “Button, Button”. Matheson also wrote numerous television episodes of “The Twilight Zone” for Rod Serling, including “Nightmare at 20,000 Feet” and “Steel”. He later adapted his 1971 short story “Duel” as a screenplay which was promptly directed by a young Steven Spielberg, for the television movie of the same name.

Richard Matheson

William Stevenson, was a British-born Canadian writer, whose 1976 book “A Man Called Intrepid” was a best-seller and made into a 1979 mini-series starring David Niven. Stevenson followed it up with a 1983 book titled “Intrepid’s Last Case”. He published his autobiography in 2012. Stevenson is also noted for having set a record with another 1976 book, “90 Minutes at Entebbe”, about Operation Entebbe where Israeli commandos secretly landed at night at Entebbe Airport in Uganda and succeeded in rescuing the passengers of an airliner hi-jacked by Palestinian militants, while incurring very few casualties. The remarkable record is that in the pre-internet age Stevenson’s “instant book” was written, edited, printed and available for sale within weeks of the event it described.

Wm Stevenson

.

.

Other notable people who died during 2013 include,

. 

Mikhail Kalashnikov, a Russian arms designer responsible for the AK-47 rifle, millions of which have been produced.

Mikhail Kalashnikov 

Roy Brown Jr., an American car design engineer responsible for designs such as the Edsel, and the much more successful Ford Consul and Ford Cortina

Roy Brown Jr with the Edsel

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Did You Know? – Some More Concrete Facts From Fasab’s Files.

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Fact day again on the fasab blog.

And where better to start that a fact literally set in concrete – lots of concrete.

Enjoy.

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did you know4

.

There is enough concrete in the Hoover Dam

to pave a two lane highway from San Francisco to New York

Hoover Dam

.

.

When the Statue of Liberty was moved

from France to the United States,

214 crates were used to transport it.

The Statue was also reduced to 350 pieces.

statue of liberty

.

.

When the divorce rate goes up in the United States,

toy makers report that the sale of toys also rise.

divorce rate

.

.

The cartoon character Popeye was actually based

on a real person named Frank “Rocky” Fiegel

who was a tough guy handy with his fists

and who was quite similar to Popeye physically.

Popeye

.

.

The reason why locusts swarm are because when they are in groups,

a “hot-spot” behind their hind legs is stimulated,

which in turn causes their destructive nature.

A large swarm of locusts can eat eighty thousand tons of corn in a day.

locust_swarm

.

.

In 1755, the first Canadian post office opened in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

postal service canada

.

.

The company “Sony” was originally called “Totsuken.”

They felt the name “Sony” would be easier to pronounce.

The name was invented by a cross between the name

“sonus” and “sonny” (derived from “sound” and “sonic”).

They also thought that the similarity to “Sonny”,

meaning a young man or boy,

would represent an energetic young company.

Sony-Logo

.

.

After the Krakatoa volcano eruption in 1883 in Indonesia,

many people reported that, because of the dust,

the sunset appeared green and the moon blue.

The moon was said to appear blue for almost two years.

volcano erupting

.

.

Reno, Nevada is west of Los Angeles, California.

map Reno Nevada

.

.

During one seven year period,

Thomas Edison obtained approximately three hundred patents.

In is whole life he obtained over one thousand patents.

edison patent

.

.

About 30% of American admit to talking to their dogs

or leaving messages on their answering machines

for their dogs while they are away.

doggie message

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.

The longest bout of sneezing recorded was by Donna Griffith.

It began in January 13 1981 and continued until September 16 1983

and lasted for 978 days.

Cartoon woman sneezing

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.

A bomb dropped by the Allies on Berlin during World War II

killed every animal in the Berlin Zoo except the elephant,

which escaped and roamed the city.

When a Russian commander saw hungry Germans chasing

the elephant and trying to kill it, he ordered his troops to protect it

and shoot anyone who tried to kill it.

berlin-zoo-2

.

.

In 1999, All Nippon Airlines, had one of its jets

fully decorated with Pokemon characters

from nose to tail on its exterior.

All Nippon Airways Pokemon 747 jet

.

.

The first person to die in the electric chair was William Kemmler,

an ax murderer from New York on August 6, 1890

William Kemmler execution

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.

The city of Denver was originally chosen to host the 1976 Winter Olympics,

but had to withdraw because Colorado voters rejected to finance it.

Denver Olympic sticker 1976

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The expression “Tying the Knot” comes from an old Roman custom

where the bride’s clothes were tied up in knots

and the groom was supposed to untie the knots

tying the knot

.

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Velcro was invented by Swiss engineer George de Mestral,

who got the idea after noticing burrs were sticking to his pants

after his regular walks through the woods.

Swiss engineer George de Mestral inventor of Velcro

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Nylon is a man-made fiber that is made from coal and petroleum

nylon

.

.

The theme song of the Harlem Globetrotters is

“Sweet Georgia Brown.”

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Significant Number Factoid Friday – Today The Number Is Twelve 12 (Part 2)

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Last week the number that came up as the significant number was twelve.

It turned out to be a number with a lot of associations, so many in fact that for the first time I decided to split the post into two parts.

Today we have the second part, which deals with the ‘militaria’ associations. So if you have an interest in this kind of thing I hope you will enjoy looking at this post.

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12B

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In militaria

  • HMS E12
  • HMS E12 was a British E class submarine built by HM Dockyard, Chatham and commissioned on 14 October 1914.
  • Her forward hydroplanes became entangled in anti submarine nets in the Dardanelles which sent her down to 245 feet, at the time the greatest depth achieved by any British submarine. E12 managed to surface only to come under fire by shore batteries. She avoided further damage.
  • HMS E12 was sold in Malta on 7 March 1921.
HMS E18 bliźniaczy do E12
HMS E18 bliźniaczy do E12

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  • HMS H12
  • HMS H12 was a British H-class submarine built by Fore River Yard, Quincy, Massachusetts and commissioned in 1915.
  • HMS H12 along with HMS H11 and HMS H13 to HMS H20 were all built in America but were interned by the United States government until the USA entered World War I.
  • HMS H12 was sold in April 1920 in Dover.

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  • USS O-12
  • The USS O-12 (SS-73) was an O-class submarine of the United States Navy launched on 29 September 1917.
  • These later O-boats, O-11 through O-16, designed by Lake Torpedo Boat, were to different specifications than the earlier Electric Boat designs. They performed poorly as compared to the Electric Boat units, and are sometimes considered a separate class.

USS_Nautilus_USS_O-12

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u12

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  • HMS Achates (H-12)
  • HMS Achates was an A-class destroyer of the British Royal Navy launched on 4 October 1929 and commissioned on 27 March 1930. She was sunk on 31 December 1942 in the Battle of the Barents Sea.

HMS_Achates_(H12)

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  • L12 Molotovets
  • The Leninets or L-class were the second class of submarines to be built for the Soviet Navy. They were minelaying submarines and were based on the British L-class submarine, HMS L55, which was sunk during the British intervention in the Russian Civil War. Some experience from the previous Dekabrist-class submarines was also utilized.
  • The boats were of the saddle tank type and mines were carried in two stern galleries as pioneered on the pre-war Krab, the world’s first mine-laying submarine.
  • These boats were considered successful by the Soviets and 25 were built in 4 groups between 1931 and 1941. Groups 3 and 4 had more powerful engines and higher speed.

Leninets-class submarine

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  • Z12 Erich Giese
  • The Z12 Erich Giese was a Type 1934A-class destroyer built for the German Navy (Kriegsmarine) in the late 1930s. At the beginning of World War II, the ship was used in the German Bight to lay minefields in German waters. In late 1939 the ship made one successful minelaying sortie off the English coast that claimed two merchant ships. While returning from that sortie, she torpedoed a British destroyer without being detected and continued on her way. During the early stages of the Norwegian Campaign, Erich Giese fought in both naval Battles of Narvik in mid-April 1940 and was sunk by British destroyers during the Second Battle of Narvik.

Z12 Erich Giese

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  • O 12
  • The O 12 was a O 12-class submarine of the Royal Netherlands Navy. Built at Koninklijke Maatschappij De Schelde in Vlissingen, it was launched in 1930 but was unable to take part in military action during World War II. During the German attack on the Netherlands in 1940, O 12 was in the naval wharf of Willemsoord, Den Helder for periodic maintenance. Unable to make the trip across the North Sea to England, the ship was scuttled.
  • The German occupying forces had O 12 raised and sent it to the Wilton-Fijenoord wharf in Rotterdam for repairs. On January 30, 1943, it was taken into service by the German Navy, the Kriegsmarine, as the U-D2.
  • On July 6, 1944, it was taken out of service and moved to Kiel, where it was scuttled in the harbor just before the end of the war.
  • Afterwards, O 12 was raised and demolished.

O 12-class submarine of the Royal Netherlands Navy

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  • USS S-12
  • The USS S-12 (SS-117) was a second-group (S-3 or “Government”) S-class submarine of the United States Navy. She was launched on 4 August 1921.
  • In addition to service in the northeast through 1928, from 1929 into 1936, S-12 served almost exclusively in the Panama Canal area although she visited Baltimore, Maryland, from 15 May to 5 June 1933, and New London from 15 May to 1 June 1935.
  • Departing Coco Solo on 13 June 1936, S-12 decommissioned at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on 30 September 1936.
  • S-12 was recommissioned on 4 November 1940 and following voyages to Bermuda, Saint Thomas, United States Virgin Islands, and Coco Solo, S-12 operated at St. Thomas from December 1941 into March 1942; in the Panama Canal area from April into June; at Guantánamo from June into December; in the Panama Canal area from that month into May 1944; at Trinidad from May into July; and at Guantánamo from July into 1945.
  • Departing from Guantánamo on 25 March, S-12 was decommissioned on 18 May 1945 at Philadelphia, and sold on 28 October that year to Rosoff Brothers of New York City. Resold to Northern Metals Company of Philadelphia, on an unspecified date, she was scrapped.

USS S12 SS117

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  • I-12 Submarine
  • The submarine I-12 was a Japanese A2 type long-range fleet submarine built at the Kawasaki’s shipyard in Kobe.
  • The I-12 was used during 1944 to disrupt American shipping between the west coast and the Hawaiian Islands. She torpedoed and sank the Liberty ship John A. Johnson, on 30 October 1944 and, after ramming and sinking the lifeboats and rafts, then machine-gunned the 70 survivors in the water, killing 10.
  • A Pan American Airways plane spotted the John A. Johnson’s remaining men soon thereafter, and the USS Argus recovered them at 21:35 on 30 October. The Argus disembarked the men at San Francisco on 3 November.

Japanese type A1 submarine

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  • HMS Ocean L12
  • HMS Ocean of the Royal Navy is an amphibious assault ship (or landing platform helicopter) and is the sole member of her class. She is designed to support amphibious landing operations and to support the staff of Commander UK Amphibious Force and Commander UK Landing Force.
  • She was constructed in the mid-1990s by Kvaerner Govan Ltd on the Clyde and fitted out by VSEL at Barrow-in-Furness prior to first of class trials and subsequent acceptance in service.
  • She was commissioned in September 1998 at her home port HMNB Devonport, Plymouth.

HMS_Ocean_L12

.

.

  • Curtiss A-12 Shrike
  • The Curtiss A-12 Shrike was the United States Army Air Corps’ second monoplane ground-attack aircraft, and its main attack aircraft through most of the 1930s.
  • It was based on the A-8, but had a radial engine instead of the A-8’s inline, water-cooled engine, as well as other changes.

Curtiss_A-12_Shrike(USAF)

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  • Curtiss XF12C-1
  • In 1932, the U.S. Navy gave Curtiss a contract to design a parasol two-seat monoplane with retractable undercarriage and powered by a Wright R-1510 Whirlwind, intended to be used as a carrier-based fighter.
  • The resulting aircraft, designated the XF12C-1, flew in 1933. Its chosen role was changed first to a scout, and then to a scout-bomber (being redesignated XS4C-1 and XSBC-1 respectively), but the XSBC-1’s parasol wing was unsuitable for dive bombing. A revised design was produced for a biplane, with the prototype, designated the XSBC-2, first flying on 9 December 1935.

Curtiss_XF12C-1

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  • Miles M.12 Mohawk
  • The Miles M.12 Mohawk was a 1930s British two-seat, tandem cabin monoplane built by Phillip & Powis Aircraft (later to become Miles Aircraft) to the order of Charles Lindbergh in 1936.
  • After being used by Lindbergh in Europe it was impressed into service with Royal Air Force as a communications aircraft in 1941.

Miles_m12_mohawk

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  • Vultee V-12
  • The Vultee V-11 and V-12 were American attack aircraft of the 1930s.
  • The V-11 and V-12 were purchased by several nation’s armed forces, including China, who used them in combat against Japanese forces in the Second Sino-Japanese War.
  • The United States Army Air Corps purchased seven V-11s as the Vultee YA-19 in the years before World War II, testing them to gather data to compare against twin engine light attack planes.

Vultee V-12

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  • Fiat G.12
  • The G.12 was an all-metal low-wing cantilever personnel transport aircraft. It had three radial engines, one mounted on the fuselage nose and the other two in wing-mounted nacelles.
  • The engines drove three-blade feathering metal propellers. The mainwheels of its landing gear retracted into the nacelles; the tailwheel was fixed. The flight deck and cabin were fully enclosed. Access was via a port-side access door aft of the wing.
  • The G.12 was designed as a civil aircraft, but served mainly in military roles during the war. Only a limited number were built, some as late as 1944, after the Italian armistice. The G.12 inspired the postwar G.212 “Flying Classroom”, the last Italian three-engine transporter. Crew:4

Fiat_G.12

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  • Republic XF-12 Rainbow
  • The Republic XF-12 Rainbow was an American four-engine, all-metal prototype reconnaissance aircraft designed by the Republic Aviation Company in the late 1940s.
  • Like most large aircraft of the era, it used radial engines—in this case, the Pratt & Whitney R-4360 “Wasp Major.” The aircraft was designed with maximum aerodynamic efficiency in mind. The XF-12 was referred to as an aircraft that was “flying on all fours” meaning: four engines, 400 mph cruise, 4,000 mile range, at 40,000 feet. A
  • lthough highly innovative, the postwar XF-12 Rainbow was fated to compete against more modern jet engine technology and was not to enter production.

Republic_XF-12_Rainbow

.

  • Lockheed A-12
  • The Lockheed A-12 was a reconnaissance aircraft built for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) by Lockheed’s famed Skunk Works, based on the designs of Clarence “Kelly” Johnson. The A-12 was produced from 1962 to 1964, and was in operation from 1963 until 1968.
  • The single-seat design, which first flew in April 1962, was the precursor to both the twin-seat U.S. Air Force YF-12 prototype interceptor and the famous SR-71 Blackbird reconnaissance aircraft.
  • The aircraft’s final mission was flown in May 1968, and the program and aircraft retired in June of that year. The A-12 program was officially revealed in the mid-1990s.

Lockheed-A12-flying

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  • McDonnell Douglas/General Dynamics A-12 Avenger II
  • The McDonnell Douglas/General Dynamics A-12 Avenger II was a proposed American attack aircraft from McDonnell Douglas and General Dynamics. It was to be an all-weather, carrier-based stealth bomber replacement for the Grumman A-6 Intruder in the United States Navy and Marine Corps. Its Avenger II name was taken from the Grumman TBF Avenger of World War II.
  • The projected cost of the program was $57 billion, with an estimated per unit cost of $84 million.
  • The development of the A-12 was troubled by cost overruns and several delays, causing questions of the program’s ability to deliver upon its objectives; these doubts led to the development program being canceled in 1991. The manner of its cancellation has been contested through litigation to this day.

MDD-A-12_Avenger_Concept

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  • Rockwell XFV-12
  • The Rockwell XFV-12 was a prototype supersonic United States Navy fighter which was built in 1977.
  • The XFV-12 design attempted to combine the Mach 2 speed and AIM-7 Sparrow armament of the F-4 Phantom II in a VTOL (vertical takeoff and landing) fighter for the small Sea Control Ship which was under study at the time.
  • On paper, it looked superior to the subsonic Hawker Siddeley Harrier attack fighter, however, it proved unable to produce enough thrust for vertical flight, even with an installed engine with more thrust than its empty weight, and the project was abandoned.

Rockwell XFV-12

.

  • C-12 Huron
  • The C-12 Huron is the military designation for a series of twin-engine turboprop aircraft based on the Beechcraft Super King Air and Beechcraft 1900.
  • C-12 variants are used by the United States Air Force, United States Army, United States Navy and United States Marine Corps.
  • These aircraft are used for various duties, including embassy support, medical evacuation, as well as passenger and light cargo transport. Some aircraft are modified with surveillance systems for various missions, including the Cefly Lancer, Guardrail and Project Liberty programs.

C-12 Huron

.

  • Bell Helicopter XR-12
  • During 1946, Bell Helicopter began development of a new utility helicopter, the Model 42. Three prototypes were built but serious rotor problems and complexity of mechanical systems precluded production.
  • A production batch of 34 helicopters was ordered, under the designation R-12A, but cancelled in 1947.
  • Another enlarged prototype (the XR-12B, Model 48A) with seats for eight plus two pilots and a more powerful 600 horsepower (447 kW) Pratt & Whitney R-1340-55 engine was also ordered, followed by 10 pre-series YR-12B helicopters, with a glazed nose, instead of the car-like nose of the Model 42 and XR-12. Whilst under flight test the helicopter was re-designated the H-12, but the results were not satisfactory, there were major problems with the main rotor due to blade weaving and poor rotor governor performance.

Bell_YH-12B

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  • Mil V-12
  • The Mil V-12 (also referred to as the Mi-12) is the largest helicopter ever built.
  • The name “Mi-12” would have been the name for the production helicopter, however, since the V-12 never went into production and only two prototypes were built, the name “Mi-12” was never officially adopted.

Mil V-12

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  • NAMC J-12
  • The NAMC J-12 was a lightweight supersonic fighter built in the People’s Republic of China for use by the PLAAF. It was one of first serious attempts taken by Chinese aircraft manufacturers to develop a modern jet fighter of indigenous design. Weighing 6,993 lb (3,172 kg) empty, it is one of the lightest jet fighters ever built.
  • Neither the J-12 nor the related Shenyang J-11 (Not to be confused with the Shenyang J-11 Flanker B+ that entered service in 1998) entered service.
  • Nine J-12s are believed to have been built, but in 1977, development of the J-12 was abandoned, probably because the Chengdu J-7, based on the Soviet MiG-21F, was considered superior.

NAMC J-12

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  • Beriev Be-12 Chayka
  • The Beriev Be-12 Chayka (“Seagull”) is a Soviet turboprop-powered amphibious aircraft designed for anti-submarine and maritime patrol duties.

Beriev Be 12 Chayka Maritime Patrol

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  • Boeing P-12
  • The Boeing P-12 or F4B was an American pursuit aircraft that was operated by the United States Army Air Corps and United States Navy.

Boeing_P-12E_USAF

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  • Harbin Y-12
  • The Harbin Y-12 is a high wing twin-engine turboprop utility aircraft built by Harbin Aircraft Manufacturing Corporation (HAMC).

Harbin Y-12

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  • Rans S-12 Airaile
  • The Rans S-12 Airaile is a family of related American single-engined, pusher configuration, high-wing monoplanes designed by Randy Schlitter and manufactured by Rans Inc. Production of the S-12S Airaile, S-14 Airaile, S-17 Stinger and S-18 Stinger II was ended as part of Rans’ extensive reorganization of its product line on 1 June 2006.
  • The S-12XL Airaile was originally intended to be cut from the line at the same time, but the customer demand convinced the company to retain the model and it is still available.

Rans_S12_(D-MQQQ)_04

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  • P-12 “Yenisei”
  • The P-12 “Yenisei” was an early 2D VHF radar developed and operated by the former Soviet Union.

P-12 Yenisei 2D VHF radar

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.

  • T-12
  • The T-12 (also known as Cloudmaker) demolition bomb was developed by the United States from 1944 to 1948 and  designed to attack targets invulnerable to conventional “soft” bombs, such as bunkers and viaducts.
  • It achieved this by having an extremely thick hardened nose section, which was designed to penetrate deeply into hardened concrete structures and then detonate inside the target after a short time delay. This created an “earthquake effect”.
  • The final T-12 weighed 43,600 lb (nearly 20 metric tons). This was twice the size of the United States’ previous largest bomb.

T-12-USORDMUS

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  • Mark-12 nuclear bomb
  • The Mark-12 nuclear bomb was a lightweight nuclear bomb designed and manufactured by the United States of America which was built starting in 1954 and which saw service from then until 1962.
  • The Mark-12 was notable for being significantly smaller in both size and weight compared to prior implosion-type nuclear weapons.
  • There was a planned W-12 warehead variant which would have been used with the RIM-8 Talos missile, but it was cancelled prior to introduction into service.

Mk12 nuclear bomb

.0000

  • Convair X-12
  • The SM-65B Atlas, or Atlas B, also designated X-12 was a prototype of the Atlas missile.
  • First flown on 19 July 1958, the Atlas B was the first version of the Atlas rocket to use the stage and a half design. Ten flights were made. Nine of these were sub-orbital test flights of the Atlas as an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile, with five successful missions and four failures. The seventh flight, launched on 18 December 1958, was used to place the SCORE satellite into low Earth orbit, the first orbital launch conducted by an Atlas rocket.
  • All Atlas-B launches were conducted from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, at Launch Complexes 11, 13 and 14.

Convair X12 type missile

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.

  • Dyrenkov-12
  • D-12 (Dyrenkov-12) was a Soviet light armored car based on the GAZ-A automobile. It was a further development of N.I. Dyrenkov’s D-8 design and was intended for infantry support and anti-aircraft roles.
  • The D-12 served during the early 1930s and was observed on Red Square during November 7th parades. Some vehicles remained in service during the war in 1941 and a few participated in the victory parade in Mongolia in 1945.

Model of Dyrenkov D-12

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  • Gun Motor Carriage M12
  • The 155 mm Gun Motor Carriage M12 was a U.S. self-propelled gun developed during the Second World War. Only 100 were built; 60 in 1942 and a further 40 in 1943.
  • It had an armored driver’s compartment, but the gun crew were located in an open topped area at the back of the vehicle. An earth spade (similar to a bulldozer blade) at the rear was employed to absorb recoil. This layout—large gun mounted in an open mount at the rear, with a spade—was the pattern adopted for many years by other heavy self-propelled artillery.

155 mm Gun Motor Carriage M12

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  • T-12 Anti-Tank Gun
  • The 2A19 or T-12 is a Soviet smoothbore 100-mm anti-tank gun, which served as the main Eastern Bloc towed anti-tank gun from 1955 until the late 1980s.

T-12 100mm Soviet anti-tank gun

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  • Winchester Model 1912
  • The Winchester Model 1912 (also commonly known as the Model 12, or M12) is an internal-hammer pump-action, shotgun with an external tube magazine.
  • Popularly-named the Perfect Repeater at its introduction, it largely set the standard for pump action shotguns over its 51 year high-rate production life – from August 1912 until first discontinued by Winchester in May 1964.
  • Nearly two million Model 12 shotguns were produced in various grades and barrel lengths.

Winchester_Model_1912

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  • Beretta Model 12
  • The Beretta Model 12 is a 9×19mm Parabellum caliber submachine gun. Production started in 1962, the first users being the Italian Carabinieri and the Italian State Police. The Italian Air Force bought a large number of M12S and M12S2 for the airport security units.
  • Its debut in combat came during the Tet Offensive in 1968 when the Marines guarding the U.S. embassy in Saigon repelled the assault by the Viet Cong using the Beretta M12.
  • It is also used by various South American and African countries, and made under license in Brazil by Taurus and in Indonesia by PT Pindad.

beretta_pm12s-1

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  • Halo P-12
  • The Halo P-12 is a pump-action bullpup shotgun featuring a large magazine designed to accept only 2¾” shotgun shells, in-line with the barrel much like that found on the FN P-90.
  • The P-12 has an overall length of around 27 inches (69 cm) and weighs less than 9 pounds (4.1 kg) fully loaded.

monolithP12-1

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  • Y-12 National Security Complex
  • The Y-12 National Security Complex is a United States Department of Energy National Nuclear Security Administration facility located in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, near the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
  • It was built as part of the Manhattan Project for the purpose of enriching uranium for the first atomic bombs. In the years after World War II, it has been operated as a manufacturing facility for nuclear weapons components and related defense purposes.
  • Y-12 is managed and operated under contract by B&W Y-12 (formerly called BWXT Y-12), a partnership of Babcock and Wilcox (formerly called BWXT Technologies), and Bechtel.
  • In 2012, three anti-nuclear-weapons protesters broke into the highest-security area of Y-12.

Y-12_Security Complex Aerial

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Significant Number Factoid Friday – Today The Number Is One Hundred And Fifty 150

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

.

Time for another significant number factoid Friday.

Today the number is one hundred and fifty, 150.

These are just some of the things that are associated with that number.

Enjoy.

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.

One Hundred And Fifty  150

150.

.

In religion

  • There are 150 Psalms in the Bible, the authorship of which is usually ascribed to King David, although scholars now believe that they are the work of several authors.
  • Psalm comes from the Greek psalmos, a song sung to a harp. Some ultra-orthodox Protestant sects (like the Free Church of Scotland) forbid the singing of any hymns that aren’t psalms.
  • The last Psalm in the Bible, Psalm 150, is perhaps the one most often set to music.

Psalm_150

  • The number of sons of Ulam, who were combat archers, in the Census of the men of Israel upon return from exile (I Chronicles 8:40)

 .

 .

In mathematics

  • 150 is the sum of eight consecutive primes (7 + 11 + 13 + 17 + 19 + 23 + 29 + 31).
  • Given 150, the Mertens function returns 0.
  • In 150BC the Greek Stoic philosopher and polymath, Crates of Mallos, while laid up in Rome, staved off boredom by constructing the world’s first 3D globe. It showed four symmetrical land masses, separated by water and a central ocean.
  • The Professor’s cube is a 5 x 5 x 5 version of Rubik’s cube (which is 3 x 3 x 3). It has 150 coloured squares.

Professors_cube 

.

 .

In science

  • Steven Austad, a health researcher at the University of Texas, believes that children who are alive today could easily live to 150.
  • Based purely on body size, when compared with other mammals, humans shouldn’t live more than 30-40 years. But our large brain enables us to live in complex social groups that give us protection. The evidence is there in other species: solitary wasps have a lifespan of two weeks but social wasps live for three years.
  • In much the same way lions, which are sociable creatures, live longer than tigers, which are solitary. Austad is so sure that someone alive today will still be here in the year 2150 that he has placed a bet on it with a friend. Presumably he also believes that he will be around to collect.
  • The only animal currently capable of living for 150 years is the giant tortoise.

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  • Dunbar’s number
  • Dunbar’s number is a suggested cognitive limit to the number of people with whom one can maintain stable social relationships. These are relationships in which an individual knows who each person is, and how each person relates to every other person.
  • Proponents assert that numbers larger than this generally require more restrictive rules, laws, and enforced norms to maintain a stable, cohesive group. It has been proposed to lie between 100 and 230, with a commonly used value of 150.
  • Dunbar’s number states the number of people one knows and keeps social contact with, and it does not include the number of people known personally with a ceased social relationship, nor people just generally known with a lack of persistent social relationship, a number which might be much higher and likely depends on long-term memory size.
  • Dunbar’s number was first proposed by British anthropologist Robin Dunbar, who theorized that “this limit is a direct function of relative neocortex size, and that this in turn limits group size … the limit imposed by neocortical processing capacity is simply on the number of individuals with whom a stable inter-personal relationship can be maintained.” On the periphery, the number also includes past colleagues such as high school friends with whom a person would want to reacquaint themself if they met again.

dunbar's number

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In space

  • The number of degrees in the quincunx astrological aspect explored by Johannes Kepler.

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In politics

  • The 150th country to join the United Nations was Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, on September 16, 1980;
  • United Nations Security Council Resolution 150 recommended to the General Assembly that the Republic of the Ivory Coast be admitted to membership in the United Nations;
  • European Union Council Regulation (EC) No 150/2003 of 21 January 2003 is regarding suspending import duties on certain weapons and military equipment;
  • US Congress Senate Bill 150 amends the federal criminal code to ban the import, sale, manufacture, transfer, or possession of a semiautomatic assault weapon, including  semiautomatic rifles, semiautomatic pistols, semiautomatic shotguns, etc., that can accept a detachable magazine and has any one of the following characteristics: (1) a pistol grip; (2) a forward grip; (3) a folding, telescoping, or detachable stock; (4) a grenade or rocket launcher; (5) a barrel shroud; or (6) a threaded barrel.

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In sport

  • In cricket 150 runs is a milestone for a batsman.
  • In Round 20 of the 2011 AFL season, Geelong inflicted the worst ever defeat on the Gold Coast Suns by 150 points.

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In books, music, movies and TV

  • Gibson Guitar Corp.
  • Gibson Guitar Corp. is an American maker of guitars and other instruments, now based in Nashville, Tennessee.
  • Orville Gibson founded the company in 1902 as as “The Gibson Mandolin-Guitar Mfg. Co., Ltd.” in Kalamazoo, Michigan to make mandolin-family instruments.
  • Gibson invented archtop guitars by constructing the same type of carved, arched tops used on violins. By the 1930s, the company was also making flattop acoustic guitars, as well as one of the first commercially available hollow-body electric guitars, used and popularized by Charlie Christian.
  • It was bought by Chicago Musical Instruments in 1944, which was then acquired by the E.C.L. conglomerate that changed its name to Norlin Inc. This was seen as the beginning of an era of mismanagement.
  • Gibson sells guitars under a variety of brand names and built one of the world’s most iconic guitars, the Gibson Les Paul. Many Gibson instruments are among the most collectible guitars.
  • It has produced various models with the ’15 ‘ designation including:
  • Acoustic guitars J-150 Maple  L-150 Custom
  • Electric guitars ES-150  EM-150 Mandolin (1936-1971)
Gibson j-150
The Gibson J-150

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  • The song “30/30-150” by Stone Sour

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In transportation

  • Triumph Trident T150
  • Triumph Engineering Co Ltd was a British motorcycle manufacturing company, based originally in Coventry and then in Solihull at Meriden. A new company, Triumph Motorcycles Ltd based in Hinckley gained the name rights after the end of the company in the 1980s and is now one of the world’s major motorcycle manufacturers producing models like the Trident T150.

Triumph Trident T150

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  • Suzuki Raider 150
  • The Suzuki Raider 150 is one of the fastest motorcycles in the underbone category. It uses the 150 cc (9.2 cu in) DOHC four-valve single-cylinder oil-cooled Suzuki FXR150 engine, with a 6 speed transmission. The frame, rear swing arm, rear suspension, seat and front brakes are redesigned from the Suzuki FX125 chassis, making it more aerodynamic.
  • Its popularity in South East Asia, mainly in Thailand, Indonesia and Philippines, is due to the price of this bike—around US$1850 (90,000 to 92,001 pesos or around 16,500,001 rupiah in Indonesia).
  • Also called the Suzuki Satria 150 in Indonesia.

Suzuki_Raider_150_Thailand

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  • Suzuki GS150R
  • The Suzuki GS150R is a 150cc bike from Suzuki Motorcycle India.
  • The Suzuki GS150R was launched on November 2008and marked the entry of Suzuki Motorcycle India into the highly competitive 150 cc segment of the Indian two wheelers market.
  • Suzuki Motorcycle India states that the bike falls in between the two classes of Indian 150 cc motorcycles, namely commuter class and premium class. The GS150R has a sixth gear for cruising on high-ways.

Suzuki GS150R

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  • Bajaj Pulsar 150
  • The Bajaj Pulsar is a motorcycle brand owned by Bajaj Auto in India. The two wheeler was developed by the product engineering division of Bajaj Auto in association with Tokyo R&D, and later with motorcycle designer Glynn Kerr. Currently there are five variants available, with engine capacities of 135 cc, 150 cc, 180 cc, 200 cc, and 220 cc.
  • With an average monthly sales of around 86,000 units in 2011, Pulsar claimed a 2011 market share of 47% in its segment. By April 2012, more than five million units of Pulsar were sold.
  • The Bike was named after the Nissan Pulsar from 1978 to 2007.

Bajaj-Pulsar-150

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  • Ford F-150
  • The F-Series is a series of full-size pickup trucks from Ford Motor Company which has been sold continuously for over six decades.
  • The most popular variant of the F-Series is the F-150.
  • It was the best-selling vehicle in the United States for 24 years, and the best-selling truck for 37 years. It was also the best selling vehicle in Canada, though this does not include combined sales of GM pickup trucks.
  • In the tenth generation of the F-series, the F-250 and F-350 changed body style in 1998 and joined the Super Duty series.

Ford-F-150

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  • Ford E-150
  • The Ford E-Series, formerly known as the Ford Econoline and Ford Club Wagon, is a line of full-size vans (both cargo and passenger) and truck chassis from the Ford Motor Company.
  • The line was introduced in 1961 as a compact van and its descendants are still produced today.
  • Although based on its own platform, since 1968, the E-Series has used many components from the F-Series line of pickup trucks.
  • The Econoline is manufactured solely at Ford’s Ohio Assembly plant in Avon Lake, Ohio—after the closure of the Lorain, Ohio plant in December 2005 and the consolidation of all production at Avon Lake.
  • As of the 2012 model year, the E-Series and the Transit Connect compact MPV (which debuted for the 2010 model year) are the only vans in the Ford lineup in North America.
  • The Ford E-Series currently holds 79.6% of the full-size van market in the United States and since 1980, it has been the best selling American full-sized van.
  • Ninety-five percent of van sales are to commercial or fleet-end users, about half are cargo vans.
  • In early 2007, the E-Series was listed by Autodata as one of the top 20 best-selling vehicles in the United States, most likely due to fleet sales.

Ford E-150 Van

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  • Mercedes Benz
  • Renowned German automotive manufacturer Mercedes Benz has produced several models with the150 designation including the Mercedes Benz A-150 and the Mercedes Benz B-150.

mercedes_benz_b_150

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  • Cesna C-150
  • The Cessna 150 is a typical example of the small piston-powered aircraft produced by the Cessna Aircraft Company, a general aviation aircraft manufacturing corporation headquartered in Wichita, Kansas, USA.
  • Cessna also produces business jets. The company is a subsidiary of the U.S. conglomerate Textron.

Cessna C-150

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  • Gulfstream G150
  • The Gulfstream G100, formerly known as the Astra SPX, is an Israel Aircraft Industries-manufactured twin-engine business jet, now produced for Gulfstream Aerospace.
  • Astra evolved from the Rockwell Jet Commander aircraft, for which IAI had purchased the manufacturing license in 1968, and the IAI Westwind. The Astra wing design was modified and with a completely new fuselage created the Galaxy (later the Gulfstream G200) business jet during the 1990s.
  • In September 2002 Gulfstream announced the improved G150, based on the G100. This new variant was due in 2005. It has been FAA certified for steep approach.
  • The United States Air Force designation for the G100 is C-38 Courier and it is used by the District of Columbia Air National Guard; by the United States Air Force with the 201st Airlift Squadron at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland. The C-38 has replaced the earlier C-21 Learjet. The C-38 differs from the standard Gulfstream G100, featuring US military-grade GPS, Tactical Air Navigation, UHF and VHF secure command radio, and Identification friend or foe system

Gulfstream-G150

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In militaria

  • USS Blakeley (DD–150)
  • The second USS Blakeley (DD–150) was a Wickes-class destroyer in the United States Navy, named for Captain Johnston Blakeley.
  • Built in 1918, she saw patrol duty along the East Coast of the United States during the interwar era.
  • Decommissioned for several years, she returned to duty at the outset of World War II. She spent much of the war on convoy patrol duty in the Caribbean.
  • On 25 May 1942, while on patrol, she was struck by a torpedo fired by German submarine U-156, which blew off her forward 60 feet (18 m). Fitted with temporary measures, she steamed to Philadelphia Naval Yard where she was fitted with the forward section of sister ship USS Taylor.
  • She spent much of the rest of the war on convoy patrol duty before being sold for scrap in 1945.

USS Blakeley DD-150

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  • USS H-7 (SS-150)
  • USS H-7 (SS-150) was an H-class submarine that served in active duty with the United States Navy from 1918-1922.
  • The Imperial Russian Navy ordered 18 H-class submarines from the Electric Boat Company in 1915. Eleven were delivered, and served as the American Holland class submarines, but shipment of the final six was held up pending the outcome of the Russian Revolution of 1917, and the boats were stored in knockdown condition at Vancouver, British Columbia. All six were purchased by the U.S. Navy on 20 May 1918 and assembled at Puget Sound Navy Yard.
  • H-7 was launched on 17 October 1918 and commissioned on 24 October with Lieutenant Edmund A. Crenshaw in command.
  • The submarine, attached to Submarine Division 6 (SubDiv 6) and later to SubDiv 7, operated out of San Pedro, California, on various battle and training exercises with the other ships of her division. She also patrolled out of San Pedro with interruptions for overhaul at Mare Island.
  • H-7 reached Norfolk on 14 September 1922, having sailed from San Pedro on 25 July, and decommissioned there on 23 October. Her name was struck from the Naval Vessel Register on 26 February 1931. She was sold for scrapping on 28 November 1933.

USS_H-7_SS-150underway,_circa_1922

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  • USS Neunzer (DE-150)
  • USS Neunzer (DE-150) was an Edsall-class destroyer escort built for the U.S. Navy during World War II. She was named in honor of Machinist Weimar Edmund Neunzer, who was killed in action 2 July 1942 during the Aleutian Islands Campaign and was posthumously awarded the Air Medal.
  • Designed to take the place of fleet destroyers on convoy duty, the destroyer escorts proved their worth in long miles of steaming on escort and antisubmarine duties. Their efforts played a major role in defeating German submarine depredations at a time when the U-boats were threatening to cut Allied supply lines.

USS Neunzer DE150

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  • A-150 – The Batleship that never was.
  • Design A-150, also known as the Super Yamato class,[A 1] was an Imperial Japanese plan for a class of battleships. Begun in 1938–39, the design was mostly complete by 1941. However, so that a demand for other types of warships could be met, all work on Design A-150 was halted and no keels were laid.
  • Authors William H. Garzke and Robert O. Dulin have argued that Design A-150 would have been the “most powerful battleships in history” because of the massive size of their main battery of eight 510 mm (20 in) guns as well as numerous smaller caliber weapons

A-150 Battleship Super Yamato Class

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  • T-150 Tank
  • The T-150 is a Soviet tier 6 heavy tank and was a further development of the KV-1.
  • The vehicle weighed as much as 50 tons. The T-150 underwent trials in the first half of 1941.
  • A prototype fought in the battles for Leningrad, and became a basis for a modification of the KV-1 with reinforced armor.
  • Despite its name, the T-150 is an upgraded KV-1. It has the same chassis and turret, with some notable improvements. Additional armor has been added to the hull, a considerably more powerful engine is available, and perhaps most importantly, it can mount the 107 mm ZiS-6 gun

t150_tank

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  • Cadillac Gage Commando
  • The Cadillac Gage Commando is a 4×4 amphibious armored car built by the American firm Cadillac Gage.
  • The vehicle has been outfitted for many roles, including armored personnel carrier, ambulance, fire apparatus, anti-tank vehicle, and mortar carrier.
  • They saw service in the Vietnam war where it became known as the Duck, or the V.
  • It was also supplied to many American allies, including Lebanon and Saudi Arabia which used them in the first major ground engagement of the Persian Gulf War.
  • No longer produced, it has been largely replaced by the M1117 Armored Security Vehicle, which was developed as tougher alternative to up-armored Humvees.

Cadillac_Gage_V150_decoupe_USA_01

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  • M150 (PAM)
  • M150 Penetration Augmented Munition (PAM) is a portable explosive device developed for U.S. Army infantry units, especially for Special Operations Forces.
  • It is mainly used to destroy massive concrete structures like bridge piers or bunker walls.
  • Each device has a main high explosive charge and a two-stage, hole-drilling shaped charge.
  • It is regarded as a high-precision blasting device rather than a simple bomb.

m150-PAM

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  • M150 Rifle Combat Optic
  • Due to the lack of lethality of the M16 and M4 at the increased ranges encountered in Afghanistan but you can’t hit what you can’t see. One of the Army’s answers to this quandary is the M150 Rifle Combat Optic (RCO) which is is designed to increase the probability of a first-round hit at distances up to 600 meters.

M150 Rifle Combat Optic

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  • The Puckle gun
  • The Puckle gun (also known as the Defence gun) was invented in 1718 by James Puckle (1667–1724) a British inventor, lawyer and writer.
  • It is a tripod-mounted, single-barreled flintlock weapon fitted with a multi-shot revolving cylinder. It was intended for shipboard use to prevent boarding.
  • The barrel was 3 feet (0.91 m) long with a bore of 1.25 inches (32 mm). It had a pre-loaded cylinder which held 11 charges and could fire 63 shots in seven minutes—this at a time when the standard soldier’s musket could at best be loaded and fired three times per minute.
  • Puckle demonstrated two versions of the basic design: one, intended for use against Christian enemies, fired conventional round bullets, while the second variant, designed to be used against the Muslim Turks, fired square bullets. The square bullets were considered to be more damaging. They would, according to the patent, convince the Turks of the “benefits of Christian civilization.” The square bullets, however, were discontinued due to their unpredictable flight pattern.
  • The Puckle Gun drew few investors and never achieved mass production or sales to the British armed forces, mostly because British gunsmiths at the time could not easily make the weapon’s many complicated components.
  • One newspaper of the period sarcastically observed, following the business venture’s failure, that the gun has “only wounded those who hold shares therein”.

puckle-gun-150

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  • 150 couples
  • In the fourth century BC, the most feared squad of the Theban army was made up of 150 homo-sexual couples. They were called the Sacred Band of Thebes, and were established by Gorgidas in 378-BC.
  • His romantic idea was that lovers would fight more fiercely at each other’s sides than strangers. This notion proved highly successful until the Battle of Chaeronea (338-BC) when the Athenian-Theban army was overrun by Philip II of Macedon, father of Alexander the Great.

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Other Stuff

  • Cities located on Longtitude 150°W: Anchorage and Fairbanks, Alaska; and, Papeete, French Polynesia;
  • Cities located on Longtitude 150°E: Rockhampton, Queensland; and, Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia; Magadan, Russia;
  • The world record for solving a Rubik’s cube is 7.08 seconds, held by 21-year-old Dutchman Erik Akkersdik, who has solved the puzzle with his feet in just 90 seconds;
  • The total number of Power Stars in Super Mario 64 DS for the Nintendo DS;
  • M-150 (energy drink), an energy drink from Thailand;

M150-2

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