Friday, May 26, 2006
I've moved the blog to a new host, and changed my blogging software from Blogger to WordPress. As a result of this change, over the next couple of yours, protectedstatic.com will stop pointing to this site and will instead mirror the new site... Please update your bookmarks from this blogspot URL to protectedstatic.com. If you're following this site through an RSS feed, the new feed's URL is http://www.blog.protectedstatic.com/?feed=rss2. I've got a feedburner feed out there as well that I'll need to either delete or update... That hasn't happened yet. I'll be leaving this site up on blogspot as an archive for as long as Google/Blogger allows it. As a final housekeeping act, commenting should now be turned off for this URL. There are already enough derelict sites that serve as spam magnets.
Thursday, May 25, 2006
Just tidying things up... Some formatting stuff got screwed up, and I'm having to go through the archives and republish certain pieces to correct it. Slow and tedious - what fun!
Monday, May 22, 2006
[random] (news.None == news.Good)
...back from attending to family matters - visited the 'rents in Central MA, followed by sister-in-law's wedding in the Berkshires. Both went much better than anticipated. And what, I ask of you, is there not to like about a wedding where the bride & groom oh-so-thoughtfully provide Glenlivet gratis? All weekend long? I thought as much. Lotsa stuff going on - I've barely touched a networked device aside from the e-ticket kiosk at the airport in a week, so I'll be scrambling to catch up over the next couple of days.
Sunday, May 14, 2006
[random] It's gonna be a light week
To all 10 or 12 of my regular readers (boy, that's humbling ;-) ), don't expect a whole lot this week, either in terms of posting or responding to comments. I'm probably going to be spending more time offline than on over the next 7-8 days, so, like, go read a book or something.
[geek][politics] good Fair Use summary
So, what is Fair Use? When are you in danger of violating copyright? Do you always need permission to use the works of others? All these points and more are covered in this excellent article on Nolo.com. If you produce content that might run afoul of copyright law, you need to check this article out. [via]
Saturday, May 13, 2006
[politics] I'm stunned that this is even a question
foolish ; it will damage your credibility far more than pitching his pasty white(-supremacist) ass overboard will.
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - Democratic Party leaders are wondering what to do about a candidate for attorney general who denies the Holocaust occurred and wants to “reawaken white racial awareness.” Larry Darby, the founder of the Atheist Law Center, made an abortive bid for the attorney general job as a Libertarian in 2002, but only recently have his views on race and the Holocaust come to light. [...] In an interview Friday with The Associated Press, Darby said he believes no more than 140,000 Jewish people died in Europe during World War II, and most of them succumbed to typhus. Historians say about 6 million Jews were slaughtered by the Nazis, but Darby said the figure is a false claim of the “Holocaust industry.” Darby said he will speak Saturday near Newark, N.J., at a meeting of National Vanguard, which bills itself as an advocate for the white race. Some of his campaign materials are posted on the group’s Internet site. “It’s time to stop pushing down the white man. We’ve been discriminated against too long,” Darby said in the interview."[W]ondering what to do"? About someone who believes in the "Holocaust industry" and who is going to speak at a neo-Nazi conference?!? Dump his ass! There, done, was there a dilemma there somewhere? Jesus Haploid Christ, people - he's a power-seeking lunatic, that's all there is to it. Dump him. Do I think you can change political affiliation over a lifetime? Sure. Do I think it'll happen between election cycles? Well, let's just say that I find that pretty damn convenient - particularly a change from Libertarian to Democrat. He's looking for funding, he's looking for publicity, he's looking for power. Standing behind him out of some misbegotten sense of party loyalty (particularly when he is unlikely to reciprocate) is
Thursday, May 11, 2006
[politics] Under the radar? Or over the rainbow?
In yesterday's letters to Eric Alterman's Altercation comes this (from Thomas Heiden of Stratford, CT):
Lastly, I don't know how many readers caught this, but Secretary of State Rice told a reporter the administration already has all the congressional authorization it would need to attack Iran. Yes, she did say that. When I have thought about how to protest such a policy, I have realized we are likely to awake one morning to discover it has already happened.No shit!? I read the news fairly carefully, and that slid past me entirely, so I decided to go through the official transcripts of Secretary Rice's remarks. I've read all of May and half of April, and I can't find a statement like that anywhere. What I have noticed (and perhaps this is what the letter referred to) is an article in The Nation by Jeremy Brecher and Brendan Smith. Published on 21 April 2006, and titled "Attack Iran, Ignore the Constitution" (and widely mis-cited around the internet as 'Attack Iran, Destroy the Constitution'), it contains the following:
Bush is calling news reports of plans to attack Iran "wild speculation" and declaring that the United States is on a "diplomatic" track. But asked this week if his options included planning for a nuclear strike, he repeated that "all options are on the table." [...] Bush's top officials openly assert that he can do anything he wants--including attacking another country--on his authority as Commander in Chief. Last October, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was asked by members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee whether the President would circumvent Congressional authorization if the White House chose military action against Iran or Syria. She answered, "I will not say anything that constrains his authority as Commander in Chief."[emphasis added] And, truth be told, this squares with statements to be found over and over again in the remarks by Secretary Rice that I did read: "All options are on the table", "All options are being considered". "All options" has been famously hashed and rehashed on the internet, so I'm not going to go into it here. Do I think that Rice has openly stated that Bush has all the authority he needs to attack Iran? No - she's not stupid, however much I might disagree with her. But I do think that this Administration's single-minded adherence to an Imperial Presidency model makes this very believable. The President has already stated, through words and deeds, that he is not constrained by Congressional authority with which he disagrees. His approval ratings are heading south - he has nothing to lose by attacking Iran, and might, in fact, benefit from it. The American public has a long history of coming together in times of crisis, of extending the President the benefit of the doubt. This President is alientating his conservative base - he might be able to reclaim some of their loyalty by initiating military action on Iran, standing fast and striking hard against Islamofacism or some such nonsense. From the earliest days of this Administration there have been efforts to make nukes more palatable weapons - I remember reading with some disbelief even before September 11th about the Pentagon's efforts to 'normalize' tactical nuclear weapons - and after 9/11, that tempo increased: if we'd only had these weapons, Tora Bora would never have happened, and the talking heads all nodded seriously with a chorus of yes, that's sensible, but isn't that just a little extreme? Well, came the response, 9/11 changed everything. New weapons for new wars, don't you know. And the bobbleheads went on bobbing, yes, that sounds reasonable, do they have to be nukes? Do they? Oh, they do? Hmmm. We'll have to think about that. We're standing on a scary threshold, if we haven't crossed it already. Like the letter writer, I find it all too likely that I will wake up one morning to find that large chunks of the Iranian countryside have been turned to radioactive slag and ash. The drumbeat has already started, the same pattern is being followed as the lead up to the invasion of Iraq - how do you stop it? After all, it worked so well the first time (for both factions, come to think of it...). I want to believe that I'm just being negative, or overly paranoid. But I just can't help feeling that certain courses of action have already been decided upon - the script has been written, it's just the staging and coreography that remain to be arranged.
[geek] Magicandspells-online.net sucks
Magicandspells-online.net does not sell 'magic spells'. The fscking morons who run it think that by stealing the blog content of other people they can boost their own Google ratings. Their webcrawler is too stupid to not harvest this post, so this will become part of their content - stolen, just like the rest of their 'content'. And they still won't be in the first 10 pages of Google results - your clients are getting ripped off, sploggers. Fscking morons: sploggers and the rectal warts who hire them.
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
[geek] 'scuse me while I attend to some... personal business.
Just taking care of some business, pissin' in the Google juice (I'm a first page result if you google "inmyfinger", one of these splogs - as is someone else who also complained about the theft of their content.) So, to recap: Scandinaviamusic.com is operated by a scumbag who steals other people's content. They do not sell or blog about 80s music mp3s. They steal. They are thieves. Jamtrack.net is operated by a scumbag who steals other people's content. They do not sell or blog about music. They steal. They are thieves. Inmyfinger.com is operated by a scumbag who steals other people's content. They are not a dating service. They do not host legitimate blogs or aggregation portals. They steal. They are thieves. Magicandspells-online.net is operated by a scumbag who steals other people's content. They do not sell or blog about magic or spells. They steal. They are thieves.
[politics] "...x has always had a leftist bent..."
Pop quiz time! What organization is the value of x? Please show your work; there is no penalty for using calculators, your fingers, or other appedages. Cheating will not be tolerated, and those of you who already have your hands in the air can damn well wait until everyone's had a chance to answer. And I cannot say this strongly enough: show your work! Bing! Time's up. What have you got? The National Education Association? The Congressional Progressive Caucus? The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People? AFL-CIO? SEIU? Nope. The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws? People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals? The Democratic Socialists of America? Nuh-uh. The National Organization for Women? No. The Urban League? Bzzt. Human Rights Watch? Amnesty International? Greenpeace? The National Rainbow Coalition? The Unitarian Universalist Service Committee? Public Citizen? No; oooh, good guess; wrong again; good try; who? Nope. What's that you say? The ACLU? You are so off. So, do you give up? Put down your coffee, and swallow what's in your mouth... This is gonna be good. Wait for it... We want this to be a surprise. (drumroll) It's the Central Intelligence Agency. Let that sink in for a while. And for those of you who didn't heed my warning, I'll wait for you to clean off your monitor and drain off your keyboard. Those of you who inflicted enough damage to require a quick run out to replace a keyboard are going to be out of luck; you'll just have to read this when you get back. Done? Good. Yup, the CIA is of "a leftist bent". Just this weekend, Digby predicted such a thing would occur - but she had no idea just how quickly it would come to pass. As she wrote, it was already in the works; yesterday National Review published the following editorial:
Too often the agency has performed [its] job miserably, the greatest example being its gargantuan miscalculations about the Soviet Union. In retrospect, this is perhaps unsurprising. The CIA has always had a leftist bent, well represented in its upper echelons even under directors of staunchly anti-Communist and pro-national-security orientation.Wow. Just wow. Read it in full, and get a full understanding of what 'leftist' means to what is ostensibly a mainstream conservative (intellectual!) publication: leftist is anyone who disagrees with Bush. These are the bounds of the debate, as established in the mainstream: you aren't even liberal - apparently it isn't enough that you be tagged with this favored label of invective - now you're a leftist. Disagree with the Iraq war? Leftist. Disagree with the scale, scope, or timing of Bush's tax cuts? Leftist. Disagree with Bush's environmental policies? Leftist. Think Bush's pro-business policies might go too far? Leftist. Think that perhaps science should be the only thing taught in the science classroom? Leftist. Think torture is un-American? Leftist. This is no longer a rational position or a principled position - this is a cult. I haven't decided if it's a Stalinist-style personality cult or a tax-cutting cargo cult, but cult it definitely is. And I fear that its warped sensibilities have bent the current political scene so far off true that it will be decades before the damage is undone.