Yesterday’s post went up late and included a video you may not have had time to watch, so today I’m mostly just rerunning it to give you a chance to …


Nutritionally the ideal food, it encompasses all four major food groups: FRUIT (tomatoes are fruits), VEGETABLE (tomatoes are vegetables), SALT, and SUGAR.  And now, writes David Bruce, “MIT has solved the problem of ketchup left in the bottle.”

MIT’s Freaky Non-Stick Coating Keeps Ketchup Flowing

When it comes to those last globs of ketchup inevitably stuck to every bottle of Heinz, most people either violently shake the container in hopes of eking out another drop or two, or perform the “secret” trick: smacking the “57” logo on the bottle’s neck. But not MIT PhD candidate Dave Smith. He and a team of mechanical engineers and nano-technologists at the Varanasi Research Group have been held up in an MIT lab for the last two months addressing this common dining problem. . . .

Who says America is losing her edge?

OK.  Yesterday’s post:


This could be an interesting few weeks.  Borealis — parent of Chorus Motors which is parent of WheelTug — says it hopes to test an actual WheelTug system in the actual nose wheel of an an actual Boeing 737 the week of June 18 at the Prague Airport (an official WheelTug partner).  If it works, they would presumably have a video to show at the annual Farnborough International Airshow, July 9-15 — or, if they can get one for the purpose, perhaps even an actual airplane to drive around the air show.

I am working very hard to steel myself for snafus, delays, disappointments, or disaster of some kind.  But I think it’s now reasonable to allow for the possibility this is real, and that — just as all TVs now come with remote controls and many jets come with those “winglets” the industry resisted for so long — in a few years, most commercial airliners will be able to back out from their gates without waiting for a tug; taxi around the tarmac without having to run their main engines.  In an ideal (for me) world, it could mean $50,000 a year profit per plane from leasing the systems, times ten thousand planes.  That’s half a billion dollars a year in profit.  With its stock currently selling at $5, the company is valued at $25 million.

Not to say I’m being anything but wildly optimistic here.  I am.  Then again, I’ve assigned no value to the possibility that the Chorus Motor technology could find uses elsewhere. (Cars?)  Or to the possibility that any of the other Borealis alleged scientific breakthroughs, or their mineral holdings, could be commercialized.

So call this a lottery ticket where there’s still, say, a 50% chance we will lose every penny (did I mention that the company is legally headquartered in Gibraltar? that it used to be a Canadian mining stock?) . . . but perhaps a 50% chance of winning big.


Joe Devney:  “You made a reference Thursday to ‘Governor Romney.’ This is a construction I come across in the news media and elsewhere, and want to raise my voice to object. There have been two ‘Governor Romneys’ in the past; there are none now. When someone leaves an office, they should leave their title as well. When the Komen Foundation was in the news a few months ago, a Komen employee in an interview kept referring to the CEO as ‘Ambassador Brinker.’ This seemed absurd: she doesn’t have diplomatic immunity.  I noticed on PBS’s News Hour today that, while the Republican spokesman referred to ‘Governor Romney,’ the News Hour people spoke of ‘former Governor Romney’ and ‘former President Clinton.’ I think that’s proper. And democratic.”

☞ Thanks, Joe. I wanted to show respect, but I guess I have been off-base, at least according to this.  (“There is only one Governor at at time, and it’s not respectful of the current office holder to refer to former office holders as it they were still in office. “) But former ambassadors? The same source seems to grant them more latitude. (“Former ambassadors are addressed with the honorific Ambassador at their preference … and most I’ve encountered to prefer to be addressed as such.”) And I’m all but certain it was okay to address Harland Sanders as “Colonel,” because his chicken was so good.


Because his campaign is so unashamedly deceptive, Rachel Maddow and others might call Mr. Romney something worse.  See her latest on this point, here (the full clip) or, minus 8 minutes of build-up, here:

Our democracy is in some danger not just because billionaires can now swamp the airwaves with a seven to one advantage (as in Wisconsin), but also because it’s entirely legal for those ads to be complete lies.

You can’t lie in ads about toothpaste — saying your brand reduces cavities  by 40% if it does not — but you can lie in political ads, saying anything. Entirely legal. No recourse.

Some years ago I put three tort reform measures on he California ballot, the central one being an initiative that the Stanford Research Institute estimated would lower auto insurance premiums by 40% even as it improved the pay-outs to most seriously injured accident victims.  At the behest of the trial lawyers whose income was threatened by this measure, Ralph Nader proclaimed in TV ads that, if passed, this measure would raise auto insurance premiums by 40%.  He had the number right — 40% — but had flipped the direction. It was as dishonest as George W. Bush claiming that “by far the vast majority” of his tax proposed cuts would go to people “at the bottom of the economic ladder.”  So the auto insurance reform lost and George W. Bush won.  And Mitt Romney may win, too.

But that would be a shame, because his economic vision — further tax cuts for the wealthy, austerity for everyone else — will lead, instead, to a depression and larger deficits.

He has embraced the draconian Paul Ryan budget.

He proposes deep cuts in investment in infrastructure, research, and practically everything else except the military.

So to those who wish this site were more about personal finance and less about politics, I’d suggest the two are tightly entwined.  Ask any college applicant hoping for a Pell grant.  Ask anyone still out of work because the Republicans refused to pass the American Jobs Act.  Ask any relative old enough to remember the last Depression.

If you care about your money, you will learn the facts (did you know that Mitt Romney had a poor jobs record as Governor of Massachusetts and left the state with the highest per capita debt of any in the nation?).

And you will get involved.


Here.  It is a portal to three web sites:, where we debunk phony claims they make about us;, where we debunk phony claims they make about themselves; and, where we note the promises that, in the face of unprecedented obstruction,the President has nonetheless kept.


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