Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Binary Black Hole in 3C 75

Explanation: What's happening in the middle of this massive galaxy? There, two bright sources at the center of this composite x-ray (blue)/radio (pink) image are thought to be co-orbiting supermassive black holes powering the giant radio source 3C 75. Surrounded by multimillion degree x-ray emitting gas, and blasting out jets of relativistic particles the supermassive black holes are separated by 25,000 light-years. At the cores of two merging galaxies in the Abell 400 galaxy cluster they are some 300 million light-years away. Astronomers conclude that these two supermassive black holes are bound together by gravity in a binary system in part because the jets' consistent swept back appearance is most likely due to their common motion as they speed through the hot cluster gas at 1200 kilometers per second. Such spectacular cosmic mergers are thought to be common in crowded galaxy cluster environments in the distant universe. In their final stages the mergers are expected to be intense sources of gravitational waves.

Health Overhaul Signed

It’s the law of the land: Health overhaul signed

Many people are quite unhappy and have their panties in a knot that now they will have to pay taxes so that all people may obtain health care coverage. It’s interesting that the richer and more religious the person is, the louder the complaining. The ones who are bitching the most have the least to lose. Some relentlessly witness for Jesus of their Bible, and at the same time they vehemently oppose helping others with basic things such as health care. On the discussion boards and social networks the religious ones are in a tizzy, crying “socialism has come to America!” Yet at the same time they do not want to part with their cherished Medicare, forgetting that too is a “social” program. The fundamentalist Christians who are retired will fight to keep their Social Security and are quite upset if there is talk about money not being there to fund Social Security for their children and grandchildren.

Religious folks love to tell and retell the Bible stories of Jesus, like when he fed all those people with a few fish and loaves of bread. Jesus owned nothing and went day to day taking handouts from other people because he didn’t own anything of his own. Yet this is the character they follow and worship at the same time speaking against what their “good book” says about the central character of their own faith and helping your fellow human beings who are not as fortunate as you are.

Regardless of their displeasure, the new health care bill is now the law of the land. I am not totally happy with the new bill. I remain skeptical of how it’s all going to “evolve”. At the same time I am thrilled that I won’t have to worry about being denied coverage for my pre-existing conditions if my husband should lose his job and insurance coverage from work. I do understand that there is still much work to do and will take years to work out. What I don’t understand is how those who oppose this bill want to just chuck the whole thing, just dump it and not even want to discuss a plan to work together in order to help make this reform a success for the good of all the American people. It would be amazing if the two parties could work together on anything instead of this just be about one side winning and the other side losing all the time.