Friday, March 18, 2011

Prelude to a Post: “Tears Such as Angels Weep, Burst Forth”

Several difficult topics have been on my mind over the last few weeks and days. Here is some of what I’ve been reading:

We have all been bombarded by images and information concerning  the Magnitude 9.0 Earthquake in Japan — including lots of numbers, data, and technical terms. For details on the 9.0 quake and the science of how the earthquake occurred, visit the website of the U.S. Geological Survey and check out the different tabs specific to the March 11 quake: The USGS has reported that the massive quake moved the island nation of Japan 8 feet.
For the latest news and information on the aftermath of the quake, visit the crisis response center the engineers at Google have launched: The site includes a “Person Finder.” Those who have photos of shelter residents can email them to the site. Using Picasa, photos are then uploaded to a photo album and scanned to be searchable. 
To get an idea, you can visit the public album: 
Volunteers are needed to translate written Japanese:
For an explanation of “megathrust” earthquakes and thoughts on what this quake may mean for Japan’s future see this article by Yale geophysicist Jeffrey Park:
Yale Environment 360 published an article on Japan’s nuclear industry: powerful_nuclear_industry_is_under_siege/2383/
This site has an animated graphic of the nearly 570 earthquakes Japan has experienced since March 11:

A Winter to Remember. Today it looks and feels like spring in the Northeast. Here in Connecticut, particularly on the shoreline, we shoveled a lot more snow this winter than we usually do. On February 18,  Gov. Dan Malloy sent a request for assistance to FEMA based on current snow totals. By February 4, Bridgeport had received 49”, nearly twice its usual annual total. New Haven had received 52”, and winter was far from over. This article explains why our winter was this way; it has to do with climate change:  FYI Gov. Malloy was successful in his attempts to get FEMA aid for 6 of Connecticut’s 8 counties and the Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan Tribal Nations.

Where’s the Wealth? As families, cities, states, and the nation all deal with budget crises, it is interesting to reflect upon the data gathered for this article in Mother Jones.  If you are in the minority group mentioned and are reading this blog, I mean no offense to you.

I hope you will continue on to my normal Friday post. These links simply didn’t belong there.

Quote in title from John Milton (1608-1674) in Paradise Lost.

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