Friday, June 29, 2001

Question of the Day!

Do you like seeing ads on websites? To vote Yes, scroll over to the ads, click on them, and buy stuff! To vote No, click on the PayPal button. When the donations exceed the revenue from the ads, the ads come off. I estimate that to be about 3 clicks. Take your pick.

Holiday Update

Only 3 more shopping days to go! more

Tuesday, June 26, 2001

For another "drug war" success story visit and let the White House know where you stand on the issue of federal funds and drug abuse.

Yes, and...?

Hey! Look everybody: "GOP OKs Change to Faith-Funds Bill!" Well, isn't that nice of them. According to the article "Under the deal, participants in social-service programs will be allowed to sit out any religious aspects" How considerate! Now our nation's religious leaders can report the activities of thier clients without a single qualm.

Yup! No more of that messy "confidentiality" crap! No more "silence of the confessional!" Chalk up another great victory for the "war on drugs!" more

Friday, June 15, 2001

Well ... damn.

You know, despite all the cool stuff it promises, I'm really starting to dislike CSS 2.

Sunday, June 10, 2001

Domestic Terrorism

The media has been instructed to use the phrase "the worst act of domestic terrorism in U.S. history" and are dutifully pounding the words into our ears (see: Prayers, Quiet As Oklahoma City Bomber Faces Death and McVeigh Apologizes for Deaths in Letters to Paper if you haven't heard the phrase already). I protest this discounting of two centuries of history in a single sweep of self-serving statist propaganda. For accuracy's sake the phrase should be "the worst act of domestic terrorism in U.S. history of the 20th century."

The assassination of President John F. Kennedy might be considered for the top spot in domestic terrorism for the 20th century. In contrast to the Oklahoma City bombing it had better planning and a well-chosen target. Tim McVeigh's planning wasn't too bad, but his target certainly was "the worst" (Gore Vidal suggested a better one.) The effects of the assassination are still felt today, the event was clearly a turning point in U.S. history. But in terms of loss of human life and sheer atrocity, Tim McVeigh's sludge bombs, and whatever other devices were used, take the lead – for the 20th century.

"The worst act of domestic terrorism in U.S. history?" Well, if Timothy McVeigh is to be accepted as the standard then the best choice would be (envelope please ...) John Brown's raid on Harper's Ferry, October 17, 1859 – gateway to the United States' Civil War. Like Tim McVeigh's bombing, John' Brown's raid was conducted in protest of a de-humanizing and repressive social institution, the exploitation of human beings by human beings, and the denial of basic human rights. Like Tim McVeigh's bombing, John' Brown's raid targeted a federal building. John Brown scores points over Timmy McV by having the sense to pick a "hard target," a federal armory, and for staging the raid at night when the armory was guarded by a single watchman. As for loss of life, John Brown exceeds Tim McVeigh's numbers through sheer tragic irony, the first man killed in the Harper's Ferry raid was Hayward Shepherd, a free black man riding past the town on a train.

As for the aftermath, John Brown's friend and fellow abolitionist Frederick Douglass asks: "Did John Brown fail? John Brown began the war that ended American slavery and made this a free Republic." while Gore Vidal contends that if McVeigh had blown up FBI headquarters in Washington when no-one was in it, he'd "be a national hero." In terms of historical impact, John Brown is clearly the winner. The Oklahoma City bombing is clearly not the "Harper's Ferry" of the 20th century, but it might be considered yet another bloody skirmish in our current replay of the Kansas-Missouri War of slave-holder vs. free man.

Saturday, June 09, 2001

Season's Greetings

Get Ready! My favorite holiday season is coming up.

Starting with Decriminalization Day, July 3rd! A day to gather with your loved ones and celebrate everything that makes life worth living.

Next, the high point of the season Independence Day, July 4th! Without this day, the rest of the year seems meaningless to me.

Finally we wind it all up with 4XDay, July 5th through July 8th! It's the End of the World, enjoy it while it lasts!

Friday, June 08, 2001

It's getting too depressing in here. Let's lighten the mood.
Dark Planets May Orbit Strange Nearby Objects

According to this article:

"These would be very, very cold planets," said Charles J. Lada, an astrophysicist at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory. "They're probably not really great places to have life."

Brown dwarfs emit very little energy, and a world in orbit around one would afford days no brighter than twilight. Any potential life would have to play by biological rules we don't currently know of.

Nonsense! Everybody knows that these planets are ruled by alien hive-mind societies who live in underground cities (because it's so cold outside!) and breed giant monsters to invade Earth with.

Oh, yeah! And they need women. (It's really cold out there!)

Thursday, June 07, 2001

You want fries with that?

Obesity Tops Smoking As Health Risk

You know what this means don't you? Yup! A whole bunch of new, compassionate laws and lawsuits!

  • Mandatory Fat or No-Fat seating in resturants
  • Mandatory Fat sections in airports
  • Lawsuits from Second-hand Fat Victims
  • Counter-suits
  • Massive protests from pro-life organizations. "Don't eat that! You're killing your baby!"
  • Massive counter-protests from pro-choice organizations.

Think for a second here: just how long have humans been eating, smoking and even heaven forbid drinking? What fraction of the human race do you think over-indulges in these pastimes? I mean to the point of becoming a "danger to themselves or others?"

Compared to the mass of humanity that manages to get on with its collective life without excessive indulgence, the over-indulgers are a tiny fraction, a true minority.

The most telling sentence in the news story is "The survey found that 59 percent of Americans are at least overweight." 59%? And what is the criteria? "Obesity was determined by finding a respondent's body mass index, a figure derived by calculating a person's weight in pounds by 703 and dividing that result by height in inches squared." Whatever that means.

And where did this information come from? "The telephone survey, which was conducted in 1998, asked 9,585 adults about their weight, height, smoking and drinking habits, income and quality of life. They also were asked if they had any of 17 chronic health problems, including asthma, cancer, diabetes and heart problems." A telephone survey? Public health officials are advised to "intensify their fight against obesity to levels that at least match the public health campaign against smoking." based on a telephone survey?

According to the U.S. Census Bureau the population of the United States is 284,374,349 people. Let's see, 9,585 over 284,374,349 = 0.003% Is that statisticly significant? Is my math wrong? It is 2:30 in the morning ... maybe I'd better let that point slide ...

Am I Surprised?

The Oklahoma City Bombing and the Politics of Terror, by David Hoffman
When I first saw the pictures of the truck-bomb's asymmetrical damage to the [Alfred P. Murrah] Federal Building, my immediate reaction was that the pattern of damage would have been technically impossible without supplementing demolition charges at some of the reinforcing concrete column bases... For a simplistic blast truck-bomb, of the size and composition reported, to be able to reach out on the order of 60 feet and collapse a reinforced column base the size of column A-7 is beyond credulity.
General Benton K. Partin (ret.)

Why does this not surprise me? Former military man takes up radical politics and commits atrocity ... don't tell me ... it's right on the tip of my tongue ...

Wednesday, June 06, 2001

Analyze this:

It's 11:30 from where I'm sitting and I'm wondering if I'm going to have the nightmare again. No, not the old one where I'm melting like swiss cheese, the new one. The one with the doors behind the walls and the black and red earth.

Yeah, well, it's a little confusing, there are these two guys in the entry way. They've been stealing my stuff, I know they have, but they build these mounds of earth so I can't find what's missing.

I pushed one of them through a window. I had to. Don't worry, it was on the first floor. But I bet the broken glass didn't feel good at all.

No sir.

Monday, June 04, 2001

This post is about Tim McVeigh, Ted Kaczynski and the way things can just come apart in your head and instead of hurt feelings and bloody noses you start leaving bodies behind you. Hey, I identify with these guys! Tim McV is the poster boy for "Joe Average!" But somewhere along the way they ran out of the moral force of will that keeps people from blowing each other up.

Matthew Rossi's post on Zero Tolerance at Once I noticed I was on fire, I decided to relax and enjoy the fall... scores a direct hit with me, jabbing steel needles into some of the red, raw nerves of my distant, distant youth.

But in a good way.

His observations on the social constipation closing off our much needed outlets for aggression and frustration really hit the mark. Go read it. Now. I'll wait...