Monthly Archives: February 2013

Your Questions About Motor Vehicle Crashes Have A Greater Impact

February 19, 2013

Maria asks…

What will the government do if the USA were whithout electricity during one month ?

admin answers:

Probably collapse totally, as would society as a whole. Our whole civilisation is predicated on there being plentiful supplies of electricity. Just think:-
No sewage disposal as electricity required for pumps. Therefore likelihood of spread of diseases such as typhoid and cholera – massive numbers of deaths as hospitals cease to operate. Their back up generators would work for a while but not for ever as they require fuel. There may be stockpiles, but it is unlikely that these can be accessed, again as electrically operated pumps would be required. A certain amount could be accessed by hand pumping, but not sufficient. This lack of food would impact very quickly on food supplies as most large food stores are restocked daily on a ‘just in time’ basis. Of course, there would be no running water as the pumps have failed, again due to lack of fuel.

Of course, the lack of food wouldn’t be noticed as there would be no fuel to run private motor vehicles and people would be unable to travel anyway.

Assuming that this loss of power happened without notice, there would have been many deaths caused by crashing aircraft – electricity is required to power ATC systems – and crashing road vehicles – things like traffic signals would have ceased to operate.

The Government would be effectively ‘blind’ as all its computers would hav crashed. They will have back up, but, again, these will require fuel which will become increasingly difficult to source. It will become increasingly difficult to communicate with troops abroad, which will place those troops in great difficulties due to a break in the chain of command.

I would hazard a guess that at the end of the electicity free month the USA would have lost something like 50% of its population as a result of disease and the fighting that would inevitably break out due to the shortgae, or non availability, of supplies. The country would be back to where it was at the beginning of the 19th century.

Bummer’s answer is naive in the extreme. Self help is all well and good, but you cannot expect a largely urbanised population to look after itself when it has been mollycoddled for so long.

Laura asks…

What are the identified causes of road trauma?

admin answers:

Hello-this ones a bit tough,I’m assuming by “road trauma” you’re referring to an experienced traumatic event & its after effects, caused by something you were either directly involved in,or witnessed (either while driving,as a passenger,or even a bystander/witness to a serious motor vehicle accident).Have I got it right? The causes of “a road trauma” are multifaceted,& depend on many factors that can’t possibly all be listed here.I believe what you’re referring to is a form of traumatic stress somehow involving a motor vehicle.Basically, road trauma is considered to be a form of “Post Traumatic Stress Disorder”.Road trauma is the resulting after-effects of either being directly, or indirectly involved in the experience of an automobile related crisis.Its effects can be very minor,or extremely major;they can be short lived,or far more long lasting.It depends on the individual who has the experience,whether they’ve ever had a prior similar experience(“secondary”PTSD),their support system,&most importantly,how quickly the problem is correctly diagnosed & how fast an appropriate course of treatment is initiated(as well as several other factors,all based upon the individual who’s experienced the trauma).If its minor,(and for a diagnosis of “road trauma” to be used,tells me it isn’t)& the person was fairly stable previously,w a good support system,it still should be taken seriously & addressed w the help of trained professionals.THE KEY=IMMEDIATE RECOGNITION&TREATMENT.If “brushed off”it ,minimized,it can become a much greater problem, rearing its ugly head when least expected,&not be recognized for what it is.The more time that passes,the more severe the after effects can be(to the point it may not be recognized & associated with the initial trauma).Bottom line,if you think that you or a loved one has been affected by such a thing as “road trauma”,in any depth or capacity,make an appointment w a trained professional-a Psychiatric Social Worker,Psychologist,Psychiatrist;your local community mental health center can give you an appropriate referral.As a Practicing Psychiatric Social Worker,I can tell you I’ve been on BOTH sides of the table-treating PTSD/Road Trauma as well as one who experienced it first hand(I was the victim of a ‘head-on’ collision which resulted in a fatality;an elderly woman suffered a stroke while driving,& careened directly into my vehicle,while driving on a 15MPH cul-de-sac.Along with me, my then 7yr old dtr.Even though I was COMPLETELY exonerated by the police&both insurance Co.’s(plus almost 25 eye-witness)both my dtr & I STILL are affected by the trauma.I was told the woman who hit us had suffered a stroke prior to impact-but I saw her eyes,I looked INTO her eyes,&to this day,I cannot get that vision out of my head.My young dtr,too,will still speak of the crash-which caused me extensive injuries(multiple fractures,head injury,etc).My 7yr old,thank God, in a “booster” child restraint seat,weight appropriate,was in the back seat of the auto,while I was driving.She received a concussion only,but the after effects have remained with her too.The collision was horrific,our vehicle completely totaled.I’m 48yrs old,and have never received so much as a parking ticket! I’ve always prided myself on being a safe driver,but to this day,I limit my road experiences and driving to whatever is absolutely necessary.I’ve actually said,if I could give up my drivers license today and never drive again,I would(it’s just not practical).My daughter also has vivid memories,and has suffered nightmares from which she’s awoken screaming.Even though I have always been,without any doubt,the safest,most cautious driver in our family,my daughter will often question my driving ability,and then apologize,as if she feels guilty for expressing her feelings and concerns(all 100% normal).We’ve both spoken with trained therapists,and as time passes,both of us have seen our symptoms decrease-but then again,the smallest reminder can bring it ALL RIGHT BACK,in full force,like happened just yesterday.Because I’m a trained professional,I can put the experience in perspective.I’ve reach out for help,but,nonetheless,”road trauma” or “PTSD” is nothing to minimize nor mess around with.Left untreated,it can consume you,take over your life,cause problems in relationships,&take over your life.Dont ignore or minimize your experience.Recognize it for what it is,& please,get help for it.The bad news=It can mess you up if you ignore it.The good news=you’ll feel SO much better acknowledging it,knowing that everything you are feeling is valid, real,& that help is available(even thru free clinics if $ is a problem).Get someone to drive you if need be.You’re NOT crazy,it is very much a REAL problem.Im here today,grateful that I finally put my pride aside& accepted help extended to me& my little girl.Don’t mess around,you’re NOT crazy.Believe me,you’ll be awfully glad that you did! Best wishes to you for a speedy recovery!

Richard asks…

How does GM mild hybrid work .?

admin answers:


I’ve included a GM press release and you can look at the Chevy website. I have not had the opportunity to drive a Tahoe or Malibu Hybrid (other vehicles from GM have been promised with their new hybrid system, such as the Sierra).

I am in the Chicago region, so it may be some time, because GM is limiting the availablility of it’s new hybrids essentially to the two coasts where emission regulations are the most stringent. GM may or may not release the new system to the rest of the country, unlike the last mild hybrid system they had (in the Silverado or Vue Green Line, for example).

I make this distinction so we are speaking about the same vehicles- the 2008/09 GM’s.

And one point, to be technically correct, GM’s new hybrid system is considered a full hybrid system, because it can technically move using electricity only, the internal combustion engine (ICE) does not need to start.

GM’s NiMH pack has a 300 volt storage capacity. As a basis of comparison, a Prius has a 500 volt storage capacity on it’s NiMH.

However, usable capacity of GM’s NiMH is hard to find, so there is no way to tell at this point exactly how far or how fast the vehicles will travel on electricity only. A 5000 pound vehicle will not travel very far or fast, no matter what the capacity in this application is, or what GM says in press releases. This is not meant as a criticism of the GM system, BTW, just pointing out the obvious.

Here is the most recent press release I could find from GM on details on the 2009 Sierra Hybrid:

CHICAGO – GMC announced the 2009 GMC Sierra Hybrid, a powerful full-size pickup that achieves 40-percent greater city fuel economy and a 25-percent improvement in overall fuel economy while delivering the capability expected of a full-size truck – including a 6,100-pound (2,767 kg) towing capacity.

Partnering General Motors’ patented two-mode hybrid system and a powerful 6.0L gas V-8, the Sierra Hybrid delivers highly efficient performance, including all-electric driving up to 30 mph (48 km/h). That allows fuel savings to be realized even when the truck is fully loaded or towing a trailer.

“The Sierra Hybrid represents GMC’s commitment to engineering excellence, delivering a fully functional truck that offers a significant improvement in fuel economy,” said Jim Bunnell, GMC general manager. “Sierra Hybrid will deliver fuel economy that is expected to be the best in the full-size pickup segment, exceeding the current mileage leader – the non-hybrid Sierra.”

The Sierra Hybrid goes on sale in the fourth quarter of 2008 and is based on the strong and capable Sierra platform that was introduced for the 2007 model year. It will be offered in the Crew Cab body style on both 2WD and 4WD models. Each model is equipped with several standard, popular features, including StabiliTrak electronic stability control system, a locking rear axle and a trailering package. Sierra Hybrid also offers dual-stage frontal air bags and head curtain side air bags, and it is the only full-size truck with five-star side-impact ratings in federal crash tests.

Hybrid details

The Sierra Hybrid’s fuel-saving performance is derived from GM’s advanced Electrically Variable Transmission (EVT) and 300-volt nickel-metal hydride Energy Storage System (ESS), which work in concert with the standard 6.0L V-8 gasoline engine with Active Fuel Management (AFM) and late intake valve closing (LIVC) technology. GM’s hybrid technology system not only enables the Sierra to launch and drive up to 30 mph on electricity alone, it also allows the Vortec 6.0L V-8 engine to operate in its more economical V-4 mode for longer periods.

As part of the vehicle’s emission control system, the ESS is warranted for eight years/100,000 miles.

With GM’s two-mode hybrid system, the electric power used to propel the vehicle is generated by the hybrid system itself. When the brakes are applied or the vehicle is coasting, the electric motors within the hybrid system create electricity that is stored in the 300-volt battery. This stored energy is used to move the vehicle and the regenerative braking cycle is renewed.

The two-mode hybrid system provides seamless, dependable power on demand in an efficient package. In fact, its electric motor is less than half the size of those in single-mode hybrid systems. This technology was developed and is still used in fleets of hybrid transit buses in more than 70 North American and European cities. Scaled-down for use in passenger vehicles, the two-mode system delivers fuel savings where it is needed most – in large vehicles with high levels of capability. The two-mode system was first introduced on the 2008 Yukon Hybrid. It is a core part of GM’s energy diversity efforts, which are centered on reducing dependence on petroleum, improving fuel economy, reducing emissions and minimizing the automobile’s impact on the environment.

With the fuel savings of the hybrid system and Sierra’s 26-gallon (98-liter) fuel tank, the Sierra Hybrid has a cruising range of more than 500 miles (800 km).

Quiet and smooth

Integration of the hybrid system on the Sierra is seamless – the battery pack is located beneath the rear seat – and perceptible only in what it lacks: noise.

“The Sierra Hybrid is exceptionally quiet,” said Mark Cieslak, vehicle chief engineer. “From a passenger’s perspective, the refinement of the hybrid system is quite evident throughout the driving experience, and showcases itself when the vehicle is moving under electric power.”

Contributors to the quiet driving experience include:

New exhaust system and resonator tuned for the 6.0L engine’s Active Fuel Management operation
Additional engine intake induction tuning for reduced interior noise and pleasing sound quality
Low-rolling resistance, “quiet-tuned” P265/65R18 tires for reduced road noise
Electrically driven 300-volt air conditioning compressor reduces vibration and allows the standard, tri-zone HVAC system to cool the passenger compartment even when the gasoline engine is shut off
Electrically driven 42-volt variable-assist power steering reduces vibration and provides up to a 0.5-mpg fuel economy improvement by reducing parasitic losses common in belt-driven hydraulic systems
Energy Storage System (ESS) cooling system internal fan is tuned to be quiet at low vehicle speeds when the fan could more easily be heard by the occupants
Along with quietness, the Sierra Hybrid also delivers exceptional driving smoothness, thanks to specifically tuned shocks for its Z85 suspension and a new hydraulic body mount. Located on the passenger side of the chassis, the hydraulic mount provides a dramatic improvement in highway driving smoothness, particularly on rough or choppy road surfaces.

“The hydraulic mount makes a dramatic improvement in ride quality,” said Cieslak.

Additional details specific to the Sierra Hybrid include aerodynamic aids. A slightly deeper front air dam and a tonneau cover for the bed reduce air drag, fostering maximum efficiency.

Trailering performance

In addition to increased fuel economy, the Sierra Hybrid’s electrically variable transmission also provides tremendous trailering capability, enhancing driving smoothness and quality when towing. Electric drive is enabled up to approximately 30 mph (48 km/h), even when towing, allowing fuel savings when the truck is towing a trailer.

“Along with being very smooth, the EVT always provides abundant torque at all rpm levels for easy towing,” said Cieslak. “It is particularly helpful on grades, as the EVT’s greater ratio spread allows the engine to hold optimal rpm for smooth, steady performance, with no hunting between higher and lower gears.”

The EVT incorporates grade braking and tap up/tap down shift control. It also benefits towing on curves or lower-speed back roads, as exceptionally smooth gear transitions eliminate the “shift shock” torque disruption that can occur during abrupt shifts, such as when slowing or braking.

So, there you go. A lot of sales points, but that is true for every manufacturer. If you have any questions on specifics, let me know and I can break those down further.

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Your Questions About Naturally Improve Eyesight Without Glasses

February 18, 2013

Charles asks…

How to improve eyesight without glasses?

I want to improve my eyesight without wearing my glasses. Anyone can help me to recommend a good method ? Thanks.

admin answers:

There’s a natural method that you can apply to improve your vision. It has been developed by eye experts with scientific and proven system that can lead you to get your vision back naturally. Two of my relatives have tried the program and said that they can feel the result just in a couple of weeks.

Ken asks…

Is it possible to improve my eyesight without glasses?

I’m short-sighted (meaning I can’t see far away), I want to improve my eyesight without wearing glasses or obtaining laser surgery. Is it possible? Please answer, thanks.

admin answers:

Blurry vision comes from using our eyes incorrectly. Eye exercises(eye pushups, eye aerobics, eye yoga) do not change the way we use our eyes, mind, and body togther. People feel different when they do them and after a week they get used to the different feeling but clarity does not change. Artificial corrections(glasses, contacts, surgery) also do not change the way we use our eyes so our eyes continue to get worse year after year.

Not wearing glasses is not useful unless you know how to use your eyes, mind, and body together correctly while not wearing them. If people don’t know the incorrect vision habits to avoid and the correct vision habits to relearn and how do this with dynamic relaxation, they’re just seeing blurry, which isn’t fun. It can also lead to squinting and strain trying to see clearly.

Computers and TV can encourage us to use our eyes incorrectly but they do not harm our eyes. We harm our eyes when we stare and diffuse and squint while we are using them. People who have perfect vision or know how to use their eyes correctly can use the computer or tv all they like with out any harm to their visual system.

People who want to improve their eyesight naturally can start out by getting the best books. I have a link to the best book on Amazon on my website. Finding a good teacher near you can speed things up significantly. I also have a link to several Natural Eyesight Teachers around the world on my website. Successful Natural Eyesight Improvement Teachers don’t teach eye exercises because they don’t improve eyesight.

Thomas asks…

Is there anyway to naturally improve eyesight?

Lately I’ve noticed how I can’t see as good as I used to. I can’t even draw a picture on my computer screen without straining my eyes to see it.
I won’t be able to afford an eye appointment for a while, but I really don’t want to have to wear glasses or contacts.
Is there anyway I can improve my eyesight naturally or at least keep it from getting worse until I can get an appointment?

admin answers:

The carrots thing is actually a huge myth, see for the full story, but it originated from some WW2 propaganda.

Vitamin A is important for your eyesight, thousands of impoverished children go blind every year from lack of vitamin A. Though overdosing on it can be pretty bad for you too, you wouldn’t be able to eat the amount of carrots required to get the benefit without making yourself very ill and very orange from the carotene in the carrots.

Liver is the best thing to eat for your eyes. Though Cod Live Oil supplements can also help, there are plenty of foods which have a good vitamin A content, see

If you can get hold of bilberries, they have also been said to help improve eyesight, they are a smaller, sweeter version of blueberries, though most supermarkets probably wouldn’t carry them, but they grow wild in many places.

I’m not sure from your question where you live, but if you live in America, you may want to check out these sites, and they can give you advice on where you might qualify for a free eye test. If you live in the UK then eye tests are completely free if you are under 18 or are on benefits, and if not, most family practise opticians (opposed to chains like specsavers) only charge about £20-£30 for a test and some wave the fee alltogether if it turns out you need glasses.

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Your Questions About Motor Vehicle Crashes Have A Greater Impact

February 17, 2013

Susan asks…

What is the lowest speed crash to get whiplash?

What speed of crash do you get whiplash? 1mph? 2mph? 10mph?
In particular where a car crashes into the back of you…

admin answers:

Here is a great website with lots of info
good luck
After a third of a century of federal standards mandating the safety performance of everything from bumpers to dashboard controls, it might be reasonable to conclude that occupants are walking away from low-speed crashes without significant injury. The opposite is happening: a General Motors study found that many injuries are occurring in crashes at speeds below 8 miles per hour. Indeed, “whiplash” injuries, the soft tissue damage commonly suffered in these low-speed collisions, now account for more than half (53 percent) of all motor vehicle crash-related injuries.

Although these injuries are typically classified as minor (AIS 1, the least severe rating), 27 percent of the 2.9 million persons who sustain low-speed injuries each year still have neck pain three years later. The injuries often lead to permanent disability, and as one Swedish study concluded, “This could be the case even when the neck injuries are primarily assessed as minor.” A New England Journal of Medicine editorial noted in 1994 that 20 to 40 percent of people with whiplash have symptoms that last for years, and some never recover.

Although rear end collisions account for only 5 percent of all automobile fatalities, whiplash is both most likely to occur in such collisions and, when it does, more likely to cause permanent damage: one study found that almost one in 10 whiplash victims in rear end collisions are permanently disabled, compared to fewer than 4 in 10 in non-rear end impacts.

The ‘How’ Debate

In whiplash, the cervical spine apparently suffers soft tissue damage when the head snaps backward at the same time as the shoulders rebound forward off the seat back during the collision, but the sequence of events is in dispute. Partly this is because the dynamics of low-speed collisions have not been studied as thoroughly as high-speed collisions. A complicating factor is that human head and neck actions are more complex than those of Hybrid III crash test dummies.

The traditional view – that whiplash occurs when crash forces first flex the neck and then hyperextend it backward – is “both incomplete and inaccurate,” according to Biodynamics Research Corp., which reports that its low-speed tests “suggest a compression-tension injury causation mechanism.” Still other researchers say “the opposite (of flexion-hyperextension) is true,…that flexion sometimes follows the initial extension of the cervical spine.”

Several factors appear to affect the severity of whiplash:

• Ramping.When the occupant slides up the seatback during the collision, it adds to the whiplash motion.

• Gender, Age, Height.Women (probably because their necks tend to be less muscular than men’s) and older and taller people are more likely to sustain the injury.

• Turning. An occupant whose head is turned to the side may suffer greater injury because the whiplash motion turns the head even more.

• Awareness. Occupants who were aware of the impending crash suffered fewer neck injuries in one study.

• Small Cars. Occupants of smaller cars are more likely to suffer whiplash than those in larger cars.

• Vehicle Stiffness. “Stiff” vehicles that do not absorb sufficient crash forces in low-speed impacts may reduce vehicular damages, but they transmit more crash forces to occupants, increasing the risk of injuries, including whiplash.

• Seat and Head Restraint Design. Seat and head restraint stiffness and height can aggravate whiplash injuries.

Whiplash: Faked or Real?

Auto insurers tend to blame increased whiplash injury claims on fraud. They say up to half of all fraudulent claims are for whiplash, noting that such claims are rising while vehicle damage claims are decreasing. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, while acknowledging that some neck sprains are real, says they are “easy to fake or exaggerate into fraudulent insurance claims” because they do not result from impact with the car’s interior and they often cannot be detected by standard clinical or radiological exams.

In its 1994 editorial, however, the New England Journal of Medicine pointed to studies that show most people don’t know the symptoms well enough to fake whiplash for profit. In addition:

• A 1995 Australian study found compelling data that supports an organic basis for chronic whiplash pain.

• The same study found no evidence that desire for monetary gain affected the prognosis for whiplash patients.

• Canadian doctors who examined 28 whiplash patients found that the injury “bore a direct etiologic relationship to internal derangements…in [22 of the 25] patients who underwent arthographic investigation.”

The Australian researchers said the only known way to confirm reliably a patient’s whiplash injury claim is through anesthetic blocks of the affected joints.

Head Restraints: Solution or Problem?

Swedish researchers found that over five years, head restraints prevented neck injuries in about one-fourth of the rear-end collisions it reviewed, but concluded that the restraints did not affect the severity or outcome of the injury.

The head restraint requirement of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has significantly lowered the incidence of crash-related neck injuries since it became law in 1969. The rule, however, allows both fixed and adjustable restraints, and although fixed restraints are more effective and less expensive to install, most U.S. Cars have adjustable restraints because, automakers claim, consumers consider them more luxurious. Yet, adjustable restraints are often improperly positioned:

• General Motors found 83 percent of adjustable head restraints could have been better positioned to protect occupants.

• The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found that 65 percent of adjustable restraints weren’t positioned high enough or close enough to the back of occupants’ heads. (The study also found the same problem in almost half of the cars equipped with fixed restraints.)

• The Insurance Institute rated as “good” the head restraint systems of only five of 164 car models in 1995; 117 were rated “poor,” half of them cars with fixed restraints.

As early as 1974, NHTSA recommended more closely integrating head restraint and seat back designs, but the recommendation has never been adopted. Australia, which started with the same standards as the U.S., upgraded its requirements to a minimum head restraint height of 28 inches, even for adjustable restraints in the down position.

‘Catcher’s Mitt’ Seats

Delphi Automotive Systems, formerly a part of General Motors, has a unified seat and head restraint that it claims will reduce the risk of whiplash and other injuries by 40 percent. The redesigned seat, which will allow the head and body to move together in a rear impact, was initially introduced in 1998 on cars produced by GM’s Swedish partner, Saab. The 2000 Buick LeSabre is the first domestic car to offer the “Catcher’s Mitt” seat.

Sharon asks…

Who made the Boeing 787 Dreamliner failed batteries?

There has been no mention of who made the batteries that are failing, I just wondered if anyone knew?

admin answers:

Factbox: Batteries blamed in Boeing 787 grounding are widely used
Published January 17, 2013

Lithium-ion batteries similar to those that prompted the Federal Aviation Administration to ground Boeing Co’s new 787 airliner on Wednesday are also used on satellites and the U.S. Military’s new F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.
Smaller-scale lithium-ion batteries have been used for more than 20 years to power laptops and other electronics. They are also increasingly popular in electric cars.

Following are some key facts about the batteries used on board the 787, and the lithium-ion battery technology, which allows batteries to be lighter and store far more energy.

-Boeing’s new 787 airliner uses two lithium-ion batteries made by the Japanese company GS Yuasa Corp, with the associated control circuits made by Thales SA. They are part of an auxiliary power unit supplied by UTC Aerospace, a unit of United Technologies Corp, that provides power while the airplane is on the ground.
-The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, built by Lockheed Martin Corp, uses a similar lithium-ion battery but it is built by a different manufacturer, France’s Saft Groupe SA. Lockheed said it did not expect any impact on the Pentagon’s largest weapons program from the Boeing grounding since the batteries were built by a different company.
-The Airbus A350 airliner built by Europe’s EADS is also due to use a lithium-ion battery made by Saft. That plane is due for its first flight this year.
-Several other aircraft, including the Airbus A380 and Boeing’s 787, use smaller lithium batteries for emergency lighting and other purposes.
-Lithium-ion batteries can catch fire if they are overcharged, and once alight they are difficult to extinguish because the chemicals produce oxygen. But Boeing said it designed multiple systems to prevent overcharging, contain a battery fire and siphon smoke away before it reaches the cabin.
-Boeing said the battery it uses on the 787 is about twice as large as a car battery and has been extensively tested, both in the lab and in operation. The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board said the auxiliary power unit battery that caught fire on January 7 at Boston’s Logan International Airport weighed about 63 pounds and measured 19 inches by 13 inches by 10.2 inches.
-Similar batteries are used in the Chevrolet Volt hybrid electric car built by General Motors Co and other electric cars, satellites, laptops, cell phones and other electronics. The technology was first used in electronics by Japan’s Sony Corp in 1991.
-Lithium-ion batteries can be made lighter, smaller and in a way that retains capacity longer. Lithium-ion batteries are about half the weight of nickel-metal hydride batteries, but their energy content is nearly twice as high.
-Problems can occur with the lithium-ion batteries, which contain flammable chemicals, if a short-circuit occurs, if they are overcharged, or if they are put under too much pressure, said Daniel Doughty, a former U.S. Government researcher and expert on battery safety.
-Battery failures can incubate for a long time before becoming noticeable, Doughty said, citing a 2011 case in which a lithium-ion battery pack in a Volt caught fire three weeks after U.S. Safety regulators conducted a crash test. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration later determined the Volt and other electric vehicles posed no greater risk for fire than gasoline-powered vehicles.
-Another lithium-ion battery maker, A123 Systems, was forced to recall battery packs made for Fisker Automotive’s plug-in hybrid sports car, the Karma, last year. A123, which ultimately went bankrupt, blamed a manufacturing defect for the batteries’ problems.
-EaglePicher Inc, a unit of OM Group Inc, also makes a lithium-ion battery that is currently being certified for a business jet, according to a research note by Buckingham Research Group. It quoted company executives as saying they could have a 787 battery designed and certified in 12 to 15 months.
(Reporting By Andrea Shalal-Esa in Washington, Tim Hepher in Paris, Alwyn Scott in Seattle and Deepa Seetharaman in Detroit)

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Charles asks…

My husband has become one of the 9/11 conspiracy theorists. Is he a nut job?

he is getting obsessive. What are your thoughts on the matter?

admin answers:

No! Too many unanswered questions…Government spent 80 million to investigate Bill Cintons Monica STAIN vs 11 million on the greatest MASS MURDER in history! Which still remains a COLD CASE: 1. The Twin Towers were destroyed faster than physics can explain by a free fall speed “collapse.”
2. They underwent mid-air pulverization and were turned to dust before they hit the ground.
3. The protective bathtub was not significantly damaged by the destruction of the Twin Towers.
4. The rail lines, the tunnels and most of the rail cars had only light damage, if any.
5. The WTC underground mall survived well, witnessed by Warner Bros. Road Runner and friends. There were reports that “The Gap” was looted.
6. The seismic impact was minimal, far too small based on a comparison with the Kingdome controlled demolition.
7. The Twin Towers were destroyed from the top down, not bottom up.
8. The demolition of WTC7 was whisper quiet and the seismic signal was not significantly greater than background noise.
9. The upper 80 percent, approximately, of each tower was turned into fine dust and did not crash to the earth.
10. The upper 90 percent, approximately, of the inside of WTC7 was turned into fine dust and did not crash to the earth.
11. One file cabinet with folder dividers survived.
12. No toilets survived or even recognizable portions of one.
13. Windows of nearby buildings had circular and other odd-shaped holes in them.
14. In addition to the odd window damage, the marble facade was completely missing from around WFC1 and WFC2 entry, with no other apparent structural damage.
15. Fuzzballs, evidence that the dust continued to break down and become finer and finer.
16. Truckloads of dirt were hauled in and hauled out of the WTC site, a pattern that continues to this day.
17. Fuming of the dirt pile. Fuming decreased when watered, contrary to fumes caused by fire or heat.
18. Fuzzyblobs, a hazy cloud that appeared to be around material being destroyed.
19. The Swiss-Cheese appearance of steel beams and glass.
20. Evidence of molecular dissociation and transmutation, as demonstrated by the near-instant rusting of affected steel.
21. Weird fires. The appearance of fire, but without evidence of heating.
22. Lack of high heat. Witnesses reported that the initial dust cloud felt cooler than ambient temperatures. No evidence of burned bodies.
23. Columns were curled around a vertical axis like rolled-up carpets, where overloaded buckled beams should be bent around the horizontal axis.
24. Office paper was densely spread throughout lower Manhattan, unburned, often along side cars that appeared to be burning.
25. Vertical round holes were cut into buildings 4, 5 and 6, and into Liberty street in front of Bankers Trust, and into Vesey Street in front of WTC6, plus a cylindrical arc was cut into Bankers Trust.
26. All planes except top secret missions were ordered down until 10:31 a.m. (when only military flights were allowed to resume), after both towers were destroyed, and only two minutes (120 seconds) after WTC 1 had been destroyed.
27. Approximately 1,400 motor vehicles were towed away, toasted in strange ways, during the destruction of the Twin Towers.
28. The order and method of destruction of each tower minimized damage to the bathtub and adjacent buildings.
29. More damage was done to the bathtub by earth-moving equipment during the clean-up process than from the destruction of more than a million tons of buildings above it.
30. Twin Tower control without damaging neighboring buildings, in fact all seriously damaged and destroyed buildings had a WTC prefix.
31. The north wing of WTC 4 was left standing, neatly sliced from the main body which virtually disappeared.
32. For more than seven years, regions in the ground under where the main body of WTC4 stood have continued to fume.
33. The WTC1 and WTC2 rubble pile was far too small to account for the total mass of the buildings.
34. The WTC7 rubble pile was too small for the total mass of the building and consisted of a lot of mud.
35. Eyewitness testimony about toasted cars, instant disappearance of people by “unexplained” waves, a plane turning into a mid-air fireball, electrical power cut off moments before WTC 2 destruction, and the sound of explosions.
36. Eyewitness testimony of Scott-pack explosions in fire trucks and fire trucks exploding that were parked near the WTC.
37. There were many flipped cars in the neighborhood of the WTC complex near trees with full foliage.
38. Magnetometer readings in Alaska recorded abrupt shifts in the earth’s magnetic field with each of the events at the WTC on 9/11.

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Your Questions About An Impaired Use Of Language Is Known As

February 16, 2013

John asks…

What are the expected benefits of a speech activated door?

For our third year project, our teachers gave us the go ahead to build a door that opens when the word “open” is spoken through a speech recognition IC.

Now that we have the door built and nearing the end of the semester, they want to know exactly why we did this.

Can anyone give me some practical uses to have a door that will open when you say “open”?

Thanks in advance!

admin answers:

Well I would think hospitals could make great use of this since it could prevent spreading germs throughout the hospital for one. Not to mention that the door would stay closed even if someone was just casually walking near it with no intention of actually going through it.

I could see a use in retail stores located in shopping centers also, as large groups of people pass by not entering that store, the motion sensor still triggers the door to open. So the verbal open command could save on heating and cooling costs.

Just a heads up though, you might think about adding visual que software that could read standard sign language for the hearing impaired that could sign OPEN.

Betty asks…

What is the problem with printing money?

I need to know what the limits are to a government printing more money in order to pay for its expenditures?
anyone help?

admin answers:

There are three limits, political will, optimal levels to maximize government revenue, and optimal levels to maximize the well being of the public.

The person above who stated that the Federal Reserve prints the money and that that printing is unconstitutional is a mistaken understanding of the actual language of the Constitution.

Article 1 Section 10 reads:
No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation; grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal; coin Money; emit Bills of Credit; make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts; pass any Bill of Attainder, ex post facto Law, or Law impairing the Obligation of Contracts, or grant any Title of Nobility.

The states are forbidden to require payment in anything except gold or silver. So if you pay a fine, the state can only compel you to pay in gold or silver money. The state can agree to accept something else, such as paper money or paper money backed in gold or silver, but if you insist there is a right to compel the state to accept payment in gold coin. A few years ago a person was fined $1000 and refused to pay based upon this, saying he should be required to pay in gold or silver and that the state law was unconstitutional since it didn’t require gold or silver. The judge agreed he had a right to pay in gold or silver coins, but not bullion. Since gold is worth $20 per ounce under US law, and you can buy a $20 coin from the United States Treasury for around $600 at that time, the judge ordered him to pay the $1000 in $20 gold dollars to be obtained from the United States Mint. He was to exchange his worthless Federal Reserve Notes for Gold Coins. He appealed his $1000 fine and got a $30,000 fine in gold. But he did make his point.

So now back to a correct answer. The Federal Reserve is independent in the United States because what is in the best interest of George Bush or Nancy Pelosi may not be in your best interest. Congress oversees the Federal Reserve and the President appoints its members, but it acts as a bank to the United States and to member banks.

In some countries the limit is a political limit, how much can the government promise to stay in power versus the likelihood of armed revolution created by inflation and the inability to acquire goods from across borders. Hitler arose precisely because of out of control inflation. So, in the United States, the Fed’s job is to act as a fiduciary to limit the ability of elected officials to simply plunder the country. In a sense, our elected officials do not trust themselves, and so handed power over to an independent body whose job is to make sure that the economy is stable.

Now there are two operational limits that the Federal Reserve looks at, what maximizes government revenue and what maximizes personal wealth. It turns out they are not the same number.

There is a theoretical value, not used in the United States, to estimate the optimum combination of seigniorage and taxes. Seigniorage is the revenue the government makes from issuing currency. If the government prints more than that amount the added costs to the government from inflation exceed the revenue from the people and so there is an upper boundary at which point the government is actually losing ground from printing.

The optimum value to maximize the revenue of the citizen, but not the government, is to print enough to cover increases in production due to technology shifts plus an amount to cover the change in per capita consumption due to immigration, births and deaths. In addition, there is a slight bias in favor of inflation because deflation can have tragic economic consequences.

Currency is a form of non-interest bearing debt from the government to its people, usable for the payment of taxes. It is also useful for other things, but that is not its legal purpose. It is a debt, just like bills, notes and bonds, but unlike them in that it does not pay interest. There is a practical limit to how much non-interest bearing debt the public will accept without demanding interest. To the extent that money adds value by facilitating transactions, the people will accept additional money, but money always loses to interest bearing accounts, so people will minimize their money holdings. Excess money will be disposed of in the goods market creating inflation or in the capital markets creating a potentially devastating bubble.

Sandra asks…

What are the fundamental rights and human rights Australians have?

I’m Australian and often hear people say that the right to freedom of speech or the right to be free from torture or slavery is a human right. Where do these rights come from if Australia has no bill of rights?

Is it from the UN covenant on civil & political rights or social & cultural rights? What are some examples of human rights, if they don’t come from this document? (i already know some of the rights on this document, such as right to be free from degrading torture, slavery, have shelter)

The other thing is where do our fundamental rights come from? Fair enough that our human rights are inalienable and apply on everyone, but what’s the difference between them and fundamental rights? Please explain by definition, example & source (ie the law in which f rights are found).

Thanks :)

Reason why i ask is because there’s an upcoming law exam i have to face and have to familiarize myself with the court presumption: “Parliament does not interfere with fundamental rights “.
“But when Parliament enacts a law which contains some ambiguity, the courts will favour an interpretation that is consistent with our international obligations, if such an interpretation exists.”- which do they prefer more? An interpretation that is pursuant to the purpose of the Act (s33 Interpretation Act 1987 NSW), or one that would lead to a reasonable, un-absurd result (i.e. is the limiting/violation of rights an absurdity?) Should i even be worried about this?

Nvm, it’s probably going to launch me into an ethical debate in the exam rather than using what i’ve been taught.

Just skimmed through the second last link you provided. That stuff is awesome, i never find those speeches. Thanks, law expert.

admin answers:

The Australian Constitution does contain some rights. Freedom of religion is in there, for example (section 116) and freedom of ‘trade, commerce, and intercourse’ between the states (section 92). The High Court has also held that the Constitution contains an implied freedom of political communication.

Documents like the ICCPR and the ICSCR are not binding on Australia. So the rights they contain are not really ‘rights’ here. But when Parliament enacts a law which contains some ambiguity, the courts will favour an interpretation that is consistent with our international obligations, if such an interpretation exists. Also, international agreements to which Australia is a party give rise to a ‘legitimate expectation’ that administrative decisions will be made consistently with those agreements (see Minister for Immigration v Teoh for the High Court’s discussion on this issue, accessible at AustLII: ).

What are typically called ‘fundamental rights’ do not really come from any particular document; they exist at common law. So, in accordance with the doctrine of parliamentary sovereignty, Parliament can make laws that modify, impair, or outright violate our fundamental rights if they want to. There are basically two limitations. The law must be consistent with the Constitution, and the law must use clear, unambiguous language. The courts have to give effect to the intention of Parliament (unless that intention is unconstitutional) but they will presume that Parliament does not intend to interfere with fundamental rights. That presumption is rebuttable by express terms or necessary implication.

Since the rights are not derived from any specific law or document, it’s really very difficult to provide an exhaustive list of what they are. A partial list appears in this paper by Chief Justice French: (along with a discussion of rights that will probably explain things far better than I have). You may also be interested to read this speech by former Justice Kirby:

Good luck in your exam.

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Your Questions About An Impaired Use Of Language

February 15, 2013

Nancy asks…

Does anybody know a good school to take American Sound Language classes?

I have always wanted to learn sound language since I was a kid, and now I have some spare time I thought this might be the perfect time to pursue this goal. I am looking for schools in Maryland, DC, or Florida. I already know of Galludet University in DC. Their prices are a little steep, I was looking for something a little cheaper.

admin answers:

I assume you mean sign language, speaking with the hearing impaired. Nearly all community colleges offer courses as do most universities. Community colleges would, of course, be the more frugal option.

Chris asks…

What is oral option hearing impaired program?

My daughter is deaf and finding her a school is challenging because only few districts offer programs for the deaf. I received an email today where it said “There are two districts that offer the oral option (no sgn language) – Utica and Lakeview. Roseville offers the Total program where they use sign language.” What does the oral option do? Do they teach the children to lip read or what? Sorry this just made me confused.

admin answers:

In general, yes, in an oral program, they teach children to lipread, emphasize spoken language, and forbid sign language.

While it is important to consider this as an option, also consider that only around 30% of language can be ascertained by lipreading. Most language cannot be lipread, and it is EXTREMELY important for children to have a first language. Many children who go to oral schools do not get that first language exposure, and they have problems picking up any language for the rest of their lives.

Programs that use ASL help ensure that the child has a good language foundation before trying to teach them English. There are also cued speech programs, which attempt to teach English through a visual means. These are generally more successful than pure Oral programs.

I advise you to try to talk to some professionals in the field, talk to Deaf people, talk to parents of children in the programs. Get as much information as you can before deciding which program to place your child into.

Robert asks…

Can someone with language impairment or damage such as aphasia still be able to do math?

I heard of a case when someone who has had a brain injury literally has trouble form words/speak, but can still do math fine. Why would he have such trouble with language but not with patterns or math.

admin answers:

Because those functions are handled by different parts of the brain. Only the part of the brain that was impaired would be negatively affected.

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