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Saturday, March 18, 2006

2 Birds, 1 Stone

Filed under: | War on Terror

Today was an extremely productive day.:

One victim of last weekend’s upgrade was the 7-year-old Epson printer; it no longer wanted to work with Tiger installed. So I got rid of that…and my 6-year-old Canon scanner…and replace them both with an Epson CX4200 all-in-one unit. So far, it works pretty darn good! Click on the thumbnail to see a conventional photo scanned; I’d say it did a pretty darn good job…and it was a whole lot quieter, both for scanning and for printing!

And now, for the other news….
I went to Tuscon today to help defend the military recruitment offices near the campus of the University of Arizona. I was there for four hours, the Bad Guys didn’t get to confront us, they went home disappointed, and WE WON!
Remember, this was one demonstration of many around the world, commemorating the third anniversary of the start of Operation Iraqi Freedom. I haven’t even gotten to reviewing the photos or the video I shot, due to the purchase of the scanner/printer/copier unit, which I picked up after I got back to Phoenix. So please be patient! You’ll like what you see!

Friday, March 17, 2006

St. Patrick’s Day

Filed under: | History

Today is, or course, St. Patrick’s Day, where everyone gets to play an Irishman (or Irishwoman), kiss the Blarney Stone, drink green beer, see the normally-polluted Chicago River dyed a very bright green, blah blah blah yadda yadda yadda. At least I don’t have to play Irish, as I already have Irish blood in me!
Anyway, I thought I might share the lyrics to a recently-written Gaelic song which appears on this album. A good drinking song, nevertheless. It’s called “Wander My Friends.”

(in Gaelic)
  Siulaigi a chairde, siulaidh liom
  Mar cheo an tsleibhe uaine ag
  imeacht go deo
  D’ainneoin ar dtuirse leanfam an tsli
  Thar chnoic is thar ghleannta
  go deireadh na scrib’

  Seo libh a chairde is canaidh liom
  Lionaigi’n oiche le greann is le sport
  Seo slainte na gcarad ata imithe uainn
  Mar cheo an tsleibhe uaine,
  iad imithe go deo

  (English translation)
  Wander my friends, wander with me
  Like the mist on the green mountain, moving eternally
  Despite our weariness, we’ll follow the road
  Over hills and valleys, to the end of the journey

  Come on my friends and sing with me
  Fill the night with joy and sport
  Here’s a health to the friends who have gone from us
  Like the mist of the green mountain, gone forever



Filed under: | Sports

Perhaps this needed to happen to the USA: a failure to win at the National Pastime:

ANAHEIM (Reuters) - Mexico shocked the U.S. 2-1 in the final pool game of the World Baseball Classic on Thursday, ending American title hopes at the 16-nation event while handing Japan a ticket to the last four.
The loss is also likely to send pitching legend Roger Clemens into retirement on a losing note.
Defeat was a massive blow to the nation who invented the game, produces most of the world’s top players and considers the sport their national pastime.
The semi-finals, scheduled for Saturday in San Diego, will feature Asian and Caribbean nations that have embraced the sport with Cuba taking on the Dominican Republic and South Korea facing Japan.
“This is for Mexico,” said Jorge Cantu, who drove in a pair of runs. “So everyone in our country can know what we are doing here, so we can leave with our heads held high.

Like it or not, baseball, like basketball, has becone an international sport where talent arises from countries other than our own. On the flip side, we are becoming more productive in soccer and can compete at the world level, so there is some balance here.
Maybe this loss can light a fire under the collective a**es of Major League Baseball to field a team in 2009 that will take care of business. You’ve got three years….

Side-by-Side Comparison

Filed under: | Open Threads

Let’s open this one up for discussion. Which photo looks more natural?
BTW, the photo of Bill Clinton hugging the other child took place here.

And while we’re at it, we might as well compare Bush to Hitler and discuss!

Thursday, March 16, 2006

It’s About Time

Filed under: | Bread and Circuses

Michael Jackson came back to the United States to permanently shut down Neverland. What a relief! When his sister Janet bailed him out, I bet she put forth a condition that he pay his employees the three months’ back wages he owed them.
And as soon as he told those same former employees goodbye, he likely whisked off back to whatever life he is leading in the Middle East. I hope he took some lead-lined clothing with him!

He Will NEVER Get Out

Filed under: | News

Sirhan B. Sirhan, the assassin of Robert F. Kennedy, was again denied parole at his hearing. That makes it 13 times he’s been denied. And it will continue to be that way, so long as Sirhan continues to deny responsibility for his act.
And even if he did admit what he did, and even if the California Parole Board decided to grant parole at his next scheduled hearing in 2011, he certainly would be an instant pariah in the United States, perhaps even worse than the worst offenders against children. If that were the case, he should be deported back to where he came from. I’m sure Hamas would welcome him with open arms, and he would feel right at home as a hero because he murdered a supporter of Israel.
How soon will it be before Hamas, or other Palestinian terrorist organizations, start taking hostages to demand for Sirhan’s release? As far as I know, over the course of 38 years, they haven’t and I’m surprised at that. May you rot in prison, “Mr.” Sirhan, forgotten by the world.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Poor Puddy Tat!

Filed under: | Geek Stuff

Someone said a long time ago: “There’s more than one way to skin a cat.”
This is for all you cat haters!

Will She Stay?

Filed under: | Bread and Circuses

Or will she go? That’s the question many people are asking about Katie Couric, who is being courted by CBS News to take over the anchor chair. Actually, I hope she takes the offer and goes. It would be a match made in heaven…or so the execs at CBS would think: a Tiffany Bitch at the Tiffany Network!
Some people are turned off by Ms. Couric’s arrogance. I know I am, so her leaving the Today show would be a shot in the arm. Matt Lauer (even with his liberal leanings) I can tolerate. Al Roker is a riot! Even when Willard Scott shows up every once in a while, he’s amusing to watch. And news-wise, I can even put up with Brian Williams and Tim Russert. To add it all up, NBC is the least offensive of the networks.
Now, will NBC’s door hit Katie’s a** on her way out?

World Taxation Without Representation

Filed under: | The UN

Here’s something that will get your morning off to a great star. Yeah, RIGHT.
The UN is always trying to find ways to get US (the United States, that is) to pay our “fair share” in their schemes for global government. Controlling the Internet was one plan. Cooking our books was another. Now there’s the plan for the imposition of “international taxes,” courtesy of Paul Weyrich:

Among the $200 billion in new taxes which the UN is proposing to levy are: Taxes on air transport: this tax, Kincaid reports, was said to make “economic sense.” Taxes on aviation fuel: this tax was sold on the basis that it would have a positive impact upon the environment. Taxes on airline tickets: this tax, according to the UN, easily could be implemented because there is no legal obstacle, and it would generate $8 billion per annum.
The UN also seeks an indirect tax on air-flight corridors, which should generate $10 billion per annum, to be followed by an indirect tax on passenger transportation, to raise $20 billion per annum. An international currency tax would generate $60 billion. A tax on carbon emissions which at five cents per gallon of gasoline would bring in a whopping $130 billion per annum. There you have it: the UN proposal to tax us for the first $200 billion.
If the UN were not blocked in this clear usurpation of power the $200 billion would be only the beginning. The United States takes in about $2 trillion in taxes. Surely the UN can figure how to duplicate that amount.

Weyrich goes on to say that this plan would have the greatest chance of success if one of two things were to happen…and of course, the folks at Turtle Bay would be overjoyed if both occurred:
1) The Democrats regained control of both houses of Congress, and/or:
2) The Democrats regained the White House after the 2008 Election.
Today’s Democrats are a far cry from the Democrats of FDR, Harry S. Truman, and even John Fitzgerald Kennedy…and would gladly surrender our sovereignty to the UN. We MUST do EVERYTHING WITHIN OUR POWER to prevent this from happening.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

iTunes to France: Au Revoir!

Filed under: | Mac Stuff

The French Parliament is considering a bill which, if it became law, force iTunes to open up its proprietary encryption, and allow music downloaded from the iTunes Music Store to be converted into any format for use on any mp3 player.
As a result, Apple is threatening to shut the iTunes Music Store in France. And rightfully so! There is a reason why iTunes’ market share is over 70 percent: it’s easy to use and IT WORKS! This bill is a result of lazy users who don’t want to buy an iPod and live with copyright protection.

UPDATE (03/15/06, 2125 MST): James posts a memo to: Me! Here’s my response:

James, James, James…you’re calling me out for the wrong reason altogether.
70 percent doth not a monopoly make. They got there by offering a superior product.
I did a little experiment: I can easily convert an AAC-encoded file into an mp3 using iTunes. The trick is, you have to burn it to a CD first, which converts it into an AIFF file, and then re-import said AIFF file as an mp3. Works fine here; no reason why it shouldn’t work on a Windows machine (any Windows iTMS users care to try and report the result?). Hence my reference to lazy users. I’m sure that if one looks hard enough, there’s some type of software out there which will do the direct conversion.
There’s nothing in my post which advocates a monopoly position for Apple. Since iTunes’ introduction, other services have come into being and are starting to challenge Apple, most notably, the revamped Napster.
The French bill telling Apple how to structure its software is much like the European Union’s efforts to defang Microsoft. Remember, the EU continued its antitrust proceedings long after the US government reached a settlement. While minimal governmental regulation is sometimes needed, if the French lawmakers actually USED iTunes to see how to convert the files, the portion of the bill dealing with Apple would be removed.

al Qaeda’s Last Warning?

Filed under: | War on Terror

Osama bin Laden tried to divide the United States by regions with his message just prior to the November 2004 election. Result: George W. Bush was still re-elected, and we’re still kicking the terrorists’ a**es! Now, it looks as though his forces, in disarray as they are, have another, similarly long, drawn-out message for us, one which the MSM refuses to publish to make the American populace aware. That’s where we bloggers come in:

“O you helpless Americans, especially those living in States far away from Washington, D.C.! Your country is comprised of many states that should not have anything to do with Muslims. Take the state of Arizona for example; what does this state have to do with killing Muslims in Palestine, Afghanistan and Iraq? What interest is it of theirs serving, helping, and siding with the Jews and Israel? If some members of your Congress and Senate are being used as Jewish tools manipulated by Israel, why do you bear the consequences? Why do you bring death and destruction to your homes and lives in an apparent sacrifice for a handful of dishonest men and women?
“The operations are ready to go, we are just waiting for orders from the commander in chief, Osama bin Laden (may Allah preserve him). He will decide whether to strike or to hold. We swear by Allah that there are so many tricks and tactical maneuvers that will make your heads spin, by the grace of Allah. You will be brought to your knees, but not until you lose more loved ones and experience significant destruction.
“Now is the time to wake up and dust off this state of complacency and ineffectiveness to save yourselves and your loved ones from catastrophes sure to come your way. Remove war mongers from positions of power and throw them in prisons, where they belong. Rid yourselves of ‘the Jewish pests’ that brought nothing to you but adversity and loss of lives and wealth. They have deceived you for many years, it is time now you turn the table on them and make an example out of them. Rid yourselves of media crafters who deliberately kept you in the dark for so long and made a mockery of you before the rest of the world.”

My response to these b*st*rds: we’ve got GUNS which other populations around the world don’t necessarily have. And since you singled out the state where I live, well here’s my personal reply.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Now How Do They Kill Off Chef?

Filed under: | Entertainment

One of the funniest characters from South Park, Chef, will be leaving the show. Isaac Hayes, the musician who voiced Chef since the show’s inception in 1997, admits he’s a little thin-skinned when it comes to knocking his religion:

“There is a place in this world for satire, but there is a time when satire ends and intolerance and bigotry towards religious beliefs of others begins,” the 63-year-old soul singer and outspoken Scientologist said.
“Religious beliefs are sacred to people, and at all times should be respected and honored,” he continued. “As a civil rights activist of the past 40 years, I cannot support a show that disrespects those beliefs and practices

I seem to recall another Scientologist who defends his faith most vigorously, most notably Tom Cruise, by jumping up and down on a couch during Oprah’s show and slamming Matt Lauer on NBC’s TODAY Show. So this doesn’t surprise me. Actually, I think they’re acting like a certain group of people elsewhere has been doing recently…and you all know who I mean by that!
One thing for which I actually admire South Park is their ability to lampoon everyone. No one is safe, and the Scientologists should know better.
So, how should Trey Parker and Matt Stone write Chef out of the show?

Moussaoui Case FUBAR?

Filed under: | War on Terror

THIS! PISSES! ME! OFF! The has already pleaded Guilty of conspiracy in relation to the 9/11 attacks, and now the Government (in the form of a TSA lawyer) has allegedly coached some FAA employees prior to the start of the Death Penalty phase. So what happens now?

As a result, in yet another twist in the case, U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema is looking at whether the death penalty should be removed as an option. The trial has recessed until Wednesday.
“This is a very serious taint of a key component,” Brinkema said. “We now have two very serious problems, and now this problem has no excuse. It is very difficult for the case to go forward, however, I don’t want to act precipitously.

Look Feds. You had the guy by the nads! He’s pleaded Guilty and has admitted to being an al Qaeda member. Why do you have to go and coach the witnesses? Moussaoui could very well have damned himself to the execution chamber if you had kept your mouths shut and let him rant and rave. Instead, we Taxpayers could foot the bill for his rest-of-his-life incarceration.
If this Death Penalty phase is tossed, thanks a hell of a lot!

More Learning Curve!

Filed under: | Mac Stuff

In a word: widgets! Click on the thumbnail to see why.
I can toggle between my main desktop and a background (called the Dashboard)which runs these mini-applications by pressing F12. There are so many to choose from, it’s absolutely amazing. For the life of me, I can’t remember what these were called in System 6/7 days…and that goes back ten years!
I gotta be careful here or else I won’t get anything done!

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Learning Curve!

Filed under: | Mac Stuff

Well my friends, I now have Tiger (Mac OS X 10.4.5) installed on my Official Computer, along with an additional 1 GB of memory, which brings it all up to 1.25GB. Once I have everything re-installed (and the tricky part was porting my music back from the friendly tech guy’s iPod), then the real fun begins!
YAY! Thanks Mr. Mason!



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