May 31, 2006

Perhaps it bothers me because I have a Belgian cousin named Muriel as well

Muriel Degauque blew herself up in Baghdad. It's a long road from the little industrial Belgian town of Charlesroi to an islamist suicide bombing. It'll be such converts to Islam that will likely be the first home-grown suicide bombers here in the States.

Posted by duver001 at 11:59 AM

Brand new in the "hey, it was a movie, you know, fiction" category

Geek fight club. Bet you thought I was going to mention the Da Vinci Code instead.

Posted by duver001 at 10:56 AM

FBI spying on Portland (OR) city government?

Big Brother indeed.

Posted by duver001 at 10:38 AM

100 thousand Zim-bucks

Zimbabwe introduces the $100,000Z bill with inflation now above 1000% per year. The previous $50,000Z bill is not sufficient to buy a loaf of bread.

Posted by duver001 at 10:26 AM

Silly patents

At Patently Silly dot com. The cordless jump rope (why bother?) and the "cylindrical object" (rock) skipping on water are my current favorites. Another beautiful demonstration of (some) failures of the patent system.

Posted by duver001 at 10:21 AM

May 30, 2006

Marianne Faithfull as Ophelia?

Probably not a wise choice. One reviewer commented, "not convincingly virginal." Thanks Leni!

Posted by duver001 at 12:10 PM

The EU finds that the sharing of personal airline passenger information with the US is illegal

Maybe this will strengthen the resolve of the US Supreme Court to also find such abuses illegal. We can hope, can't we?

Posted by duver001 at 11:50 AM

Not exactly peak oil, but perhaps peak HIV infections

Posted by duver001 at 11:47 AM

May 25, 2006

Technical details on the AT&T/NSA spy gear

Follow the little links...

Posted by duver001 at 4:24 PM

May 24, 2006

Edmund Hillary on the ethics of climbers ignoring the dying

About 40 climbers (mostly paying clients of guides) ignored a dying fellow climber on Everest.

Posted by duver001 at 12:53 PM

Elton John's vampire musical

Sorry! Sir. Elton John's vampire musical went down in flames.

Posted by duver001 at 11:52 AM

May 22, 2006

Rep. Jefferson

What a charming individual. He used the National Guard to evacuate his house during Katrina. And now accepting $100k in cash to bribe Nigerian businessmen. I see some prison time for him along with good old Duke Cunningham.

Posted by duver001 at 12:38 PM

Seven year old swins from Alcatraz to SF


Maybe it's not so hard after all...

Posted by duver001 at 12:27 PM

May 18, 2006

Searching for Jimmy Hoffa

And not under the end zone of Giants' Stadium.

Posted by duver001 at 5:07 PM

Will the last conservative to leave the room please turn off the lights?

"You were right. I was wrong.

Posted by duver001 at 4:54 PM

May 16, 2006

More uses for the illegal wiretapping run by the Bushites

Looking at the phone records of reporters to find out who in the government has a conscience and is "leaking" information about the crimes the government is committing. Equally scary are the comments from the wingnut right about how this information has compromised national security and killed US troops. I could have sworn that US troops weren't dying on a failed mission in Kansas and Iowa where the wiretapping is taking place, but I could be wrong.

Posted by duver001 at 11:23 AM

Words that matter: Truthiness?

It's as current as the regime in Washington, more recognizable than "double-speak" and less risque than "bullshit." Truthiness.

I especially liked the line "Speak truthiness to power" as an explanation of Colin Powell's failure as SoS.

Posted by duver001 at 11:18 AM

May 15, 2006

Diebold's back door into the voting machines

Taken from Bob Parks's What's New.

PREYING ON THE VOTERS: FLAW FOUND IN TOUCH-SCREEN MACHINES.


The most severe security flaw ever found in a voting system has
been discovered by a Finnish expert working for a non-profit
group. A professor of computer science at Johns Hopkins told the
NY Times that he, "almost had a heart attack," when he learned of
the problem. This was not some innocent design error that wasn't
caught. Diebold, the company that makes the machines, built in a
secret "back door" to "update the software." It could be opened
in minutes if someone knows the code. Don't worry, the code is a
proprietary secret of Diebold. Of course, there was that 2003
fund-raising letter to Ohio Republicans from the Diebold CEO that
said, "I am committed to helping Ohio deliver its votes to the
President" http://bobpark.physics.umd.edu/WN03/wn121203.html .


Read more about the problems with Black Box voting here.

Posted by duver001 at 11:04 AM

Gator troubles

Ouch! Ouch! Ouch! On a related note, my daughter Sylvia had bad dreams last night about sharks in her Mom's bathroom. Scary stuff for a seven year old.

Posted by duver001 at 10:44 AM

The widening illegal wiretap mess

Only Qwest appears to have questioned the illegal requests from the Bush regime to illegally collect domestic intelligence on US citizens. Didn't this all get worked out back in the Nixon administration? No domestic spying by the international intelligence agencies? And impeachment for the leader of the thugs?

Instead, the NSA director of these crimes is proposed as the new CIA chief.

More on this here at The Nation.

Posted by duver001 at 10:40 AM

May 11, 2006

May 10, 2006

An odd lack of bird flu

In returning European migratory birds.

Posted by duver001 at 2:35 PM

Spam tacos

Hormel Foods


Ingredients
- 1 SPAMĀ® Classic (12-ounce) can cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 12 small new potatoes sliced 1/8-inch thick
- 1 Anaheim chile chopped
- 8 corn taco shells
- 2 cups torn romaine lettuce
- shredded cheddar cheese
- chopped tomato
- sour cream
- salsa
- standard keyboard & internet connection
...

Posted by duver001 at 1:50 PM

May 6, 2006

Tracking rainfall by cell phone signal strength

,a href=http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/4974542.stm>As water absorbs microwaves relatively well.

Posted by duver001 at 1:45 PM

May 2, 2006

Geographical illiteracy

Ouch!!!

Posted by duver001 at 7:33 PM

LIGO in the news

The search for gravitational radiation.

Posted by duver001 at 5:12 PM

Continuing with failed states: NYT on Zimbabwe's inflation

Headed towards 1000%. If you have cash, you use it right away. Tomorrow it will be worth 5% less. A sheet of toilet paper is not about the same value as a Z$500 bill. And the government is printing money as if it was going out of style.

Posted by duver001 at 9:32 AM

Failed states

Sudan is at the top of the list. Also up there, the Congo, Somalia, Iraq, Zimbabwe, and Afghanistan. Genocide bad, insurgency bad, chaos bad, inflation bad. Norway is "least failed" state.

Posted by duver001 at 9:29 AM

May 1, 2006

Bush challenges to the rule of law

Bush has claimed that he is above more than 750 laws. That they do not apply to him. ''There is no question that this administration has been involved in a very carefully thought-out, systematic process of expanding presidential power at the expense of the other branches of government," Cooper [Phillip Cooper, a Portland State University law professor who has studied the executive power claims Bush made during his first term] said. ''This is really big, very expansive, and very significant."

And more than 3500 Americans were illegally spied on last year by the FBI following the contention of Bush that domestic spying laws could be completely ignored. I really think his best chance in the long term is to resign and let Cheney give him a pardon. Unless Cheney is forced to resign first...

Posted by duver001 at 2:09 PM

Get past the difficult (and less than exciting) title

..."The Rehabilitation of the Cold-War Liberal" and you'll find an elegant (if overly simplistic) essay on the roots of the Dubya Conservative take on the cold war and a contrasting liberal version of the cold war. The author argues that that liberal cold war vision of America building democracy at home and as an example overseas can be used in the post-9/11 world by a democratic party interested in regaining power.

Posted by duver001 at 12:00 PM

Zhou Tiehai: China's answer to Thomas Kincaide

Well, sort of. Zhou has underlings do his actual painting, but his satire on the art scene is being purchased by "serious" art collectors. Kincaide's brilliant parody of art is bought by suburbanites with no appreciation of the irony of their purchase.

Posted by duver001 at 11:47 AM

Laughter in response to the GOP's $100 fuel bill for our children & grandchildren

Fortunately, sometimes people do see through transparent schemes. Guess it'll take more to satisfy Americans than a $100 check (followed by the $100 bill). Maybe taxing the oil companies?

Posted by duver001 at 11:43 AM