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Free as a Bird-The Op-Ed Page

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The following is my opinion on the topic of the moment. You are not obligated to support or even read it. If you find yourself getting offended you may click the back button, your home page button, a favorites link, or the 'X' in the top right corner. You are not trapped here so if you do get upset or enraged you have no one to blame but yourself.



28 April 11

Good day, and welcome to it. Today what is on my ass is about the US states attacking Amazon.com over past taxes. Now I'm all for having to pay your taxes. Lord knows I pay my share. But it's the way they go about it that bugs the hell out of me. Once upon a time I was a pizza delivery guy for a certain pizza chain which is named after popular table game and is spelled Domino's. I had been working there for a couple years. One day the IRS or somebody decided that mileage would now be taxable. It was supposed to be used for the upkeep of your car and thus not taxable since you had to keep your car up to work and so it was a business expence. Well, out of the blue they said it was now taxable and basically made it the drivers' responsbility to offset it by repair receipts or something. At any rate it all fell on us.

All well and good. I have to pay more taxes. Shocking. The problem was that the 1099 form and the announcement came after I'd already filed my return and spent the money. So I naturally did what anybody would do and shitcanned the 1099 which said I owed $200 that I didn't have.

Fastforward two years and I get a bill from the IRS for $600 They had waited for two whole years to bill me! Seriously, 100% interest every year? I was still broke so I had to get the money from my dad and paid the bastards off. (Thanks dad. :) )

Fastforward some 25 years and we find the IRS up to the same shinaigans, wait and bait. Now they've decided to hold Amazon on account for taxes on items sold withing certain states. Okay, it's not the IRS but the state tax collectors. Still, they are of the same ilk. I love Amazon. Nothing beats shopping online and nothing beats Amazon for shopping online. I've spent a ton of money on Amazon and I love it. No sorting through the DVD bins at Walmart, just click the thing and have it on the way.

Now whether Amazon sales should be taxed or not, I don't know. Probably but hell, it's not often us little folks catch a break so I'd like it to stay as is, which as far as I know, the individual is responsible for paying the tax. But, even if it became Amazon's resposibility, it's not now. However the likes of North Carolina not only want Amazon to collect taxes, they want to go back to 2003 and get back taxes for a law that's not even in effect yet. And NC is also using this as a chance for a big snoopfest by demanding to know what was bought. That's complete bullshit. All they need to know is how much and if it's taxable. Fortunately Amazon has the ability to fight back. Even my beloved Texas is wanting is on the act. I thought the lottery was supposed to solve all our tax needs? The lottery was supposed to fund schools and solve everything. That's how it got passed. But now they say they can't afford to hire any new teachers. Sounds like somebody's been tapping the till. But I digress. I'm sure that if any of these states do manage to get this thing passed, I imagine they will all be lining up with their greedy hands out.

At any rate, whether the tax man wins or not, making it retroactive back eight years is just common greed if not double taxation since customers are supposedly already paying sales tax. Change the law, start it on that day is what I say.

4 April 10

And welcome to it. Today I'm pretty pissed about something which is taboo on most respectible websites. Fortunately, this isn't one of them. That subject is 'pirating'. Yes "stealing" somebody's supposed everlasting, invaluable "IP". Supposed God-given creations which they and they alone are able to distribute, with absolute control over who gets to use their 'IP', for now and forever, to hear them tell it.

And to some extent I agree, right up until you get lawyers involved. Then things get blown out of proportion. Then you become a parasite on the ass of society, trying to suck every drop of blood, or in this case, pennies, out of your victims. I mean really, expecting thousands of dollars from somebody who uploaded a few chunks of some latest drack from Hollyworld? Give me a break. Whatever, you gerbals have to live with yourselves. I don't.

Be that as it may, what gets on my ass is the state of the supposed evil pirate's modus operendi, i.e. peer to peer, or P2P.

Back in the day, pirates respected each other. You "steal", you share what you steal with other pirates, or peers. But along came prvate nets like thebox.bz. These parasites have their own little club, with their own private P2P client which makes the trackers public knowlege but will not allow you to download from them unless you are in their little club. Look em' up and read their rules. They are a bunch of self-important little toadies who think they are important or something. You can be kicked from their club for pretty much anything. Low ratio, uploading files to public trackers, whatever...I guess. They also have a limit on members so I've never gotten in. They invite you to 'get an invite from a friend'. Apparantly not realising that there are some six billion people on the planet, so having a little club, restricted to 86,000 members pretty much limits one in friends who may be in the club. I suppose you're supposed to put a plea online to get an invite. Pah, whatever.

Fine, they have their little kiddie club and they have their rules. Whatever, enjoy your little clubhouse. What gets my ass is that they use public trackers to scarf up all the good torrents and then run off to their own little playground and don't share. So their idea of the perfect internet is one way. If you want to be punks about it, be pirate enough to get your own rips and share amongst yourselves. The rest of us don't need you screwing up the curve or seed counts, as we like to call them.

On top of all that, I just spent a huge amount of time (we're talking months) tracking down Time Team: Big Roman Dig special from 2005. I love Time Team and I love the Roman period so I got a bit obsessed. It was publicly seeded up to 78.3% or so, which rendered almost everything unwatchable. There was a 2 minute clip of Tony that was at 100%. Everything else was screwed. The thing showed being well seeded via thebox. But being not in the club, I didn't have access. Being a bit OCD about such things, I set to the task of tracking down the 20 something parts. I love the Roman period, as I've stated. But the beeb doesn't allow us heathen USians to watch their shows online...easily. I found some on rapidshare, and spent hours downloading pieces from there and was able to get a few episodes. I spent a huge chunk of time getting some from emule, even uploading broken files to BT so that the missing chunks would upload and I could download them into my broken copies. In short a lot of my time spent due to the arrogance of thebox.bz's little club. Not that the payoff isn't worth it. I have yet to watch the big roman dig but I look forward to it.

Note to the beeb: As your citizens are all too ready to point out to us Colonials, there is a world outside of the UK. Kindly find some internationally relavant sponsors and run your shows with international commercials and I for one would love to watch your stuff on line. mktks

Oh, and to theboxians, you look like a bunch of pricks. Stick to your little clubhouse. One would almost think you worked for the various trade groups who refuse to acknowledge that VCRs and DVDRs will be used to tape your shows, wheather you like it or not. And that this whole ripping thing is just an extention of the VCR, with one person doing all the work, instead of every viewer having to do it on thier own. Get over yourselves.

1 Mar 2010

Good day. Yet another self important loser has decided his own incompitence is everybody else's fault. Andrew Stack decided the best way to solve his problems was to crash his plane into a building in Austin, TX. which housed the IRS. Fortunately he wasn't very good at it and only managed to take one other person with him. Unfortunately there are so many things about this that piss me off, I don't know which way to go.

Vernon Hunter was the one person, Stack mangaed to kill. Wrong place, wrong time kind of thing I imagine. He sounded like a good guy - Vietnam veteran, family man, plans to help people that needed help, once he retired in a year or two.

Some other things that suck are searching his name or the Stack's name comes up with one is swarmed with links spam and virus sites (techinicly trojans). So spammers and virus purveyor scum are swarming to yet another sad incident in a bid to spread their garbage. May they rot in Hell.

The wife of Mr. Wilson is suing the wife of Stack. Near as I can tell, she's innocent. She'll be needing money to put her life back together since Stack also burned down her house. It just bugs me that everbody's first responce is to look around for somebody to sue and there's always plenty of lawyers wanting their cut. It bugs me but I'll leave it alone out of respect.

But what really pisses me off is apparantly there are fan sites popping up with Stack as some kind of hero, fighting against The Man. I won't dignify them with any links. I had to swallow a little puke just searching for some. Foremost is Samatha Bell, Stack's daughter. The mind boggles. Get over it. Your dad went nuts in the end. Don't try to make anything heroic out of it. He's not a martyr. He couldn't accept that he's as powerless as the rest of us when it comes to controlling our fate. Sometimes things don't work out. He could have gone off to be a mountain man and lived out his days playing his guitar. He could have rebuilt himself like many of us have had to do when your life crashes. He could have...sold his damn plane to get some money. He decided to take it out on a bunch of people he didn't know - and managed to kill one, a fine American. Nothing heroic in that.

I can understand not wanting to think bad of your father and that's okay I guess. But almost everybody else does.

28 Oct 09

Well, here we are. Again the world changes it's clocks all around. Oh there are new rules too so one usually gets the thrill of telling older VCRs and such that 'No, it's not time yet, honey. Go back to sleep'. And set the timers back. A couple weeks later we get to go around and manually change the damn things again. Why? Because they decided to tweek the time change bullshit again. Now it's not the same day it used to be when said appliances were made and there's no option to change the date. It's fixed at the second week in October (or whatever) because that's the way it's always been since they created this menace. So in effect we get to change clocks four times a year instead of twice, with the added benefit of having to figure out which clocks need to be reset each time the old and new time change dates roll around. I now rely on my computers to tell me what time it is. Patches, I'm depending on you, son. That is patches for Windows and Linux. I have to rely on the computers to keep track. I can't even tell you what day it is without thinking about it. And you can't patch a VCR since they hardly make the damn things anymore.

So my VCR rolled on the old date and, even though I had it set to tape for two hours, I missed Amazing Race this week. So I used bitorrent. Blow me, fucktard hollyworld morons if you have a problem with that. I could have watched it online and put up with my cheapassed ISP's throttling but I just downloaded the whole thing and watched it without any stutter. Get over it. P.S. You should have Andy Rooney on TAR at some point. He rocks and he's already on right before each TAR episode anyway.

Anyway, my beloved Dear George's administration is responsible for making our lives just a bit more miserable. (Don't start. I know what most of you are thinking.) Is this something we really needed? I think not. To appear to being doing something to 'save the planet'? The time change is enough of a pain in the ass already without negating the preprogrammed settings built into our hardware. Even our family's new cell phone is set to switch on the old date and we've only had it for a couple of weeks. At any rate what sucked before sucks even more now.

Once upon a time the American people got the death penalty overtuned and it became no longer legal to off anybody, no matter how huge of a scumbag he was. It was of course rediculous. Some wastes of skin just need killing so as not to get a state sponsored retirement for wasting a bunch of innocent people for their own sick pleasure. Like they say, if it saves one life it's worth it. Works for me if the threat of the chair does that. Plus it flushes out the sewage. At any rate, at one time the people got this form of justice outlawed and yet we have been stuck with this stupid time change thing for as long as I can remember. Sure I could look it up but it doesn't matter. We have been stuck with this stupid assed life altering, security changing, downright unbalancing stupid assed theory of time change for almost a hundred years. And yet nothing but a semi annual whinefest from pretty much everybody because nobody likes the time change. Why do we put up with it. It's time to get this piece of crap squashed as an unnessesary hassle for almost everybody. Or we could all move to Arizona. That too would say something.

Mr. Obama, tear down this stupid time change rule.

25 Mar 09

Today is Memorial day. Unfortunately, to most of you it just means a long weekend. As it happens I have a long weekend too but to me, it's more than just an extra day off. And it should be for you too.

Other countries may have their own rememberence days. I don't know. This is a US holiday and this is a US rant.

While Memorial Day may not rate up there with Christmas and turkey day, to me, it's a big day. A day to remember our fallen warriors. In conflicts big and small, popular and unpopular, they all died for our country.

Most of the self-absorbed people of this country probably don't even realise what Memeorial day is supposed to be. They just see it as a holiday that's on the calender - just a free day off.

Well, not me. I know what this day is about. And I take a moment to remember those who have paid the price for my freedom. While they probably would have said that they were only fighting for their own survival or fighting for their buddies, it matters not. The result is the same, they laid it on the line for their country. And I thank them for that.

So while you are stuffing your pudgy faces with barbeque ribs or fajitas, kindly take a minute to remember why you are so free to stuff your faces on a 'long weekend'. Remember that this weekend was paid for by boys and girls who never got a chance to grow old, probably never had a chance to raise a family, never got to see their children grow up, maybe were not even old enough to buy a beer.

Also remember that we have troops still out there, on the line, right now. Let's remember that some of those guys will be remembered next Memorial Day. Enjoy your BBQ.

29Apr09

Happy day, all...assuming you aren't dead from OMG SWINE FLU!. Apparantly the bird flu didn't get us but that doesn't stop the "news" outlets from stirring it up again with pig flu. I was forced to listen to CNN yesterday, for a while. They were tracking the swine flu 'epidemic' all day or something. I was trying not to listen. Anyway, on and on about how dangerous it could be to travel anywhere but Mexico in particular. Even my beloved Foxnews had a killer pig plague link on the front page of their site as did CNN. It got bumped out of the top slot on both sites because some senator decided to change parties. But it was on the front page.

Today our local paper has a picture of a couple sitting around their house wearing masks because somebody at their son's school supposedly had Swine Flu! How rediculous. How long are they going to wear those things? A week, two? Until this latest pandemic thingy is over? Until it's just not news anymore? How long did they milk the bird flu thing? A few months I think. I hope they enjoy that. I know I enjoyed laughing at them.

First you hear a blurb about it. If it gets people talking the news outlets latch onto it and stir it for all it's worth. That gets more people talking about it and on and on it goes until you have started a near panic about something as trivial as a strain of flu. Sure the flu sucks. I've had it a few times. Most of the time I've survived it. Just because this one has a two word name doesn't make it any more deadly than any other. Hearing about it everywhere does not mean you're more likely to catch it than any other form.

It's rediculous how these things get spread. Now we have things like twitter where they are all in a tizzy over the pig death disease. Some places are throwing out all their pork they bought from Mexico. Obvioulsy the media hasn't been very clear about how one goes about catching swine flu. I love pork. Rather than toss it, I'll take some. I don't think I'd need all of Mexico's exported pork but a few pounds of bacon and sausage would do me nicely.

The World Health Organization even has a twitter page. Their latest report lists a whopping seven deaths in Mexico from this flavor of flu. They probably have more people killed in one day of muggings. They also vouched for eating pork being safe, at least as safe as it usually is.

Again, the new media's job is to report. Not spread fear uncertainty and doubt. If anything their job should be to inform and calm the masses. But I guess there's not enough rtaings in that. No scared people watch the news thinking they are being given the facts, all the facts and nothing but the facts. Such is not the case. It's not the case because they use sound bites. They give snippets which don't contain any information. Information like all of the supposed piggy flu deaths are in Mexico. That most of the reported deaths haven't even been confirmed as swine flu. Again, there have only been seven. That they already missed the mark when they spread panic about the bird flu killing us all. That they want you to be scared, all the time, so you'll keep watching.

Here's a small factoid. You aren't going to live forever. Do you really want to spend all your time living in fear? Wearing masks for one reason or another? I have a suggestion. Go out shopping. Go buy something to help get the economy going. Wear your mask if you want. You'll either be in fashion or feel silly and take it off. Go buy some delicious pork products. Turn off the news weiners. Ignore their fear-mongering and get on with enjoying life. Twilight Zone fans, remember that episode where William Shatner almost let himself be trapped in a town because of that devil headed prognosticator? I see a similarity there.

Spend money, eat pork, travel. Go, do, see, live. Don't let some over paid news presenter make you scared just so they can keep their jobs. 24hour news channels are the worst thing to happen to this planet. Cheers.

13Jan09

Good day and I've had enough of cutting back. You know, the cutting back of a product so the company can keep from raising prices, alegedly to help the consumer. Forget that the whole reason is so they don't raise prices so fast that consumers say 'to hell with it, we don't need it that bad'. i.e. We're being strung along. All the while our jobs are being shipped over to foriegn lands.

I use Irish Spring soap to wash my fat ass each and every day. It's good soap, it's green and I'm not really a soap snob anyway. At any rate, it used to be dark green with swaths of light green mixed in. I'm not sure what the light green stuff was for but I was assured that it meant clean Irish goodness. They used to have comercials where the 'Irish guy' carved off a big chunk with his knife. I guess they decided that that made their soap look wimpy so the next batch of ads had the guy merely shaving off chips of soap. I got the idea, even if I didn't fall for the ploy. It is just soap afterall. After all that they dedcided to stop advertising at all.

One day the next batch we bought became mostly the light colored stuff with a hint of the dark mixed in. Not a subtle change at all. I guess they said 'Fuck it, we gotta do something to keep these nasty bastards washing and us making tons o' soap moneys'. The upshot of which is that the soap melts a lot faster. So fast that the old bar doesn't have time enough to stick to the new one before they are both are ready to be stuck to yet another bar.

This is just one example. I'm all for companies making a profit. But when companies start cutting down quality in conjunction with price increases the average comsumer loses their baseline.

My baseline thus is Irish Spring soap.

In the olden days i.e. back when my parents and their kind were young couples they had budgets. They sat around on saturday night figuring out how they would pay the bills. I saw my dad many a night with a stacks of $20s in one row and bills in another, moving a bill here and a bill there, making ends meet. Something totaly foreign to eveybody these days. Hell it's even foriegn to me and I grew up on the edge of poverty. If I see a light on don't have the urge to run and shut it off. It's just our wasteful nature nowadays.

That doesn't mean we are suckers...Well, unless you run out and pay 40,50,60k for a car. To me that's rediculous. If you don't think it is then you are part of the problem. It starts with soap but it goes all the way to the top.

My favorite is the old colored toilet paper causes (I don't know, ass cancer I imagine. I didn't pay attention). The media heralded the 'colored toilet paper is bad' line and the masses decided that they didn't really need colored shitpaper. Guess what, the toilet paper makers all of a sudden only had one kind of toilet paper to make. I'm guessing the profits went up for that group of shrareholders. But have any of you wiped your ass lately? I'm guessing you have and I'm guessing your research has uncovered the same data I have: toilet paper these days is not the same stuff we used to have, not by a damn sight. Thus I can concluded that the whole colored shitpaper scam has played out and they have to cut even more corners. Thus Charmin, while still squeezably soft, is now like wiping your ass with a crumpled paper bag, the kind you used to get at the grocery store.

Remember paper bags? Save the damn trees, right? Well, trees are like corn. The crop you need is the crop you plant. Save the planet by using plastic bags. However, when the need for paper dwindles, the need to plant trees dwindles. You aren't saving anything by using plastic bags. But it turns out plastic bags suck too. They never melt and are worse than paper bags. What to do? We've done killed paper bags. Nobody makes paper bags anymore. Oh, good idea, make the customers BUY FUCKING REUSABLE BAGS! Fuck, why didn't I think of that?

Idiots complain about religion leading the masses around by the nose. Yet they let the media lead them like sheep to the slaughter. I'd laugh if it wasn't so pathetic.

12nov08

Good day. Well, you've done it - elected a black guy as president of the US. I like to think that that's not the only reason he'll be in office for the next four but I'm willing to bet he got a lot of votes because of, what amounts to racism. No, I have no data to support this, other than the faces I saw on the news at his rally on election night. It's just my own feeling. Still, the big thing for me is Mr. Obama is younger than me! For the first time el Jefe de US is younger than me. Talk about a slap in the face and a reminder that I'm old...and a failure. Sheesh. Of course, I've been older than Kennedy for many, many years but since I was six when he was killed I don't really count him. I don't even remember those times except we were broke. Oh I remember that. I think a lot of folks are broke now and expecting Obama to fix that for them. Like that will happen, any more than Kennedy fixed it for us. I think what we'll have is a very smart guy, who is way out of his league. A president that will be run by his advisors. However, he'll probably grow into his role. He is smart and charismatic. Actually a pretty good candididate. too bad he isn't republican.

It remains to be seen how he'll do. Can he be any worse than Carter? Any more ineffectual than Ford? Probably not. One thing for me is Gerald Ford was established. Sure, I'd never heard of him before he took over from Nixon but he was on the Warren commision so he was obviously a player. Carter, governor of Georgia and has proven to be a very good man, just not cut out for president.

Who the hell is Barrack Obama? Some guy, born to a girl from the midwest who met and married, I assume they were married, some foriegn guy, 10,000 miles from home, while at college. Probably her first big break from mommy and daddy, you know, except for the fact that they were paying for her to be there. But yeah, you go girl, break away from the parents, rebel - as long as they keep sending those checks. Kids, sheesh. And then she married some other forigner and went off to live in asia, with...our president elect.

Anyway, said foreign guy not exactly in touch with modern, western ways, who took his State sponsored college education, an education a lot of Americans are hard pressed to pay for for their own kids and I could have never dreamed of, back to his native land. Gee, you're welcome.

Anywho, I'd never even heard of this guy before he showed up in the primarys. I'm used to at least having heard of one of the candidates. That candidate usually gets my support. Oh, hell, let's face it - who is going to vote for somebody they've never heard of before? Well, up until this election, I'd have said most anybody. And yet, Obama won. I think this is where the brits say QED, though I'm not really sure of the meaning.

I didn't want Obama and frankly, I resent having his leadership forced on to me, much the same as I resented Clinton. Up until then, my horse always won. Sure, I know the other side feels the same way when I (and the American people) win.

Nevertheless, I'm optimistic. I'm hoping for great things. I doubt I'll see them because Obama has no political clout. However, I'm hoping - hoping for a few things to come to pass. Top of my list for those damn 9/11 truthers to finally shut the fuck up about some miraculous GWB NWO conspiracy to demolish the world trade centers and thus justify kicking the shit out of terrorists. Seriously, morons, if your evil gubment conspracy 'troofs' don't come out under this administration, there's got to be nothing there. Alex Jones, as the most loudmouthed moron of the troofers, I'm looking at you, you bombastic asshole.

And two, believe it or not I do care how the world looks on America and Americans. I don't want to be hated just because of which country I live in, love and support. I want world peace, I'm just realistic enough to realise that it's not possible. There's always been conflicts, there will always be conflicts. It's up to the free world to try to refferee and sometimes, not every country in the free world agrees on where we should interfer. The US, being the big boy on the block, sometimes decides to go it alone. While the rest may not agree, they should at least understand that we are trying to do what's right, even if you happen to think it's wrong. Anyway, I'm hoping that the US is less hated by the haters. If Obama can accomplish these two things during his term or terms and at least maintain our way of life, I'll concider him a success. Godspeed, the Obama presidency and God bless us all.

2Nov2008

And welcome to it. Today's bitch is about 'The Recession'. Oooo, sounds scary, and it is. Which is why you hear it ever five minutes or so on any given cable 'news' channel. I'm not impressed. I still have a job as do most of you. I make the same as do most of you. Adimittedly I've made the same for the last few years and am getting pretty tired of it but eh. I work in the airline biz so my job is directly affected by the economy and yet, I'm about to drop a hundred bucks or so at amazon for some new movies. Why? Because I can. That shows you how worried I am. I still drink as much beer as I have been. I still eat as much as I have been. My yard still looks as bad as it has been...How'd that get in there? I hate my yard but...Anyway, nothing has changed for me. Nothing has really changed for most of you, I imagine. With my limited exposure to 'the news' shows it seems to me that they have not been annoucing massive lay offs or factory closures. Some, sure but that always happens, more than I'd like but it happenes. They just have the usual 'OMG, We're in a recession!!!" crap. The economy, the economy. Where the hell is it and why does it affect me? I ain't seen it. Chicken Littles, all of them.

I have seen higher gas prices but they have been for a year. That affected us all. And just like they did in the 70's 'gas shortage', everybody took the opportunity to raise prices on everything...and got away with it. The great 70's 'shortage' episode was a cascading shortage of everything followed by a huge increase in price. This was back when a 3 increase got everybody pissed. Prices increased four fold on daily stuff. The two I most remember was peanut butter, presumably from a shortage of peanuts because they have oil and toilet paper. Oh yeah, suddenly the world was running out of toilet paper. Both popular products soon tripled in price. Good stuff. And yet we fall for it every time. There was an outcry then. It did no good. Now it's just accepeted and since nobody wants to blame the companies themselves it seems, they tend to blame the government. And since the gov is really responsible for keeping the country running (what the hell else would we be paying them for?), it suddenly becomes the government's fault there's a shortage of peanut butter. Admittedly they do bear partial blame for not sqyuashing this scam in the 70's. However...

The worst thing to happen to the US and probably the world is 24hour cable news channels. They repeat the same storys (heh) over and over, every half hour. It's brainwashing at it's most subtle. Oh yeah, and we're paying for it since cable TV isn't free. Gotta love it.

Anyway, this 'recession' crap is just that. The price of gas has started dropping, although I'm pretty sure we'll never see $2 gas again. The price never goes all the way back down due to rampant greed, especially in the oil business scam. But this media fed crissi is over. Things will settle down, us oldsters at least know it. But the media doesn't want it to settle down, at least not for a few days yet. Why? Because they know Obama stands a better chance if they keep everybody scared for their jobs and fat bank accounts. Oh yeah, they want you scared because they know the republicans will get at least subconciously blamed for the nonexistanat recession come voting day. Thus thier preferred candidate, Obama, will stand a better chance than he would if things were accepted as being good. thngs are good, better than they were a few months ago, when the damn greedy oil tycoons couldn't raise prices fast enough. Given a few more months, you'll hardly remember the near panic the newsies were spreading...at least until the next election.

Don't let the news weiners sway you on your choice, come election day. They don't live in the real world, with their million dollar salaries, anymore than some Hollywood starlette does. Don't give into their fear-mongering. Things will be fine. Just vote for (McCain) the candidate (McCain) of your choice (McCain) because he's the best candidate for the job. That would be McCain by the way. ;)

I'm not senator McCain but I approve of this message.

10 June 08

Well, another tragedy has drawn me back to the writing desk here at jt-3d Central. My topic today is those who choose go into some establishment and start blasting away. Be it Mac Donald's, a post office, or most recently a shopping area in Japan, it amounts to the same thing: Some loser is dissatisfied with his pathetic existence and wants to end it all.

Fine, off yourself. Hell, Marilyn Monroe offed herself and she had a lot to live for. Sure it may have been an accident like Elvis Presely and John Balushi but the fact remains they kept it personal. They didn't try to blame others for their problems. Their issues were their issues, not the the problem of the whole world. No, what they did was keep it inside - kept it inside until it killed them. But it killed only them.

Now days there is a disturbing slice of the population that seems to think that they are the only ones who have problems. The whole world is at fault because they didn't get to be a multi-million dollar CEO by 30 or that their girlfriend dumped them or whatever. Your problems are not the world's problems. Get over yourself. Like it or not, you are not important to the world. You can kill yourself and most people won't give a damn. I wouldn't give a damn. Some lives just aren't worth living. You want to kill yourself, I concider that your right. Go ahead, I won't stop you.

But when you are too much a pussy to die alone, I get pissed. I don't give a shit if you don't want to live any more but you have no right to take anybody with you. They are not the cause of your problems. Your inability to deal with your own issues is your problem. Kill yourself and get it over with. Don't try to blame everybody else because you are unhappy. Don't be a coward. Kill yourself and don't try to take everybody with you.

I recommend sleeping pills. They seem to have worked for Marilyn. Also recommended by me: Freezing to death - You just go to sleep I hear. Saving somebody's life. Taking out a public enemy. Hell, join the damn army. Take somebody else's bullet. If you survive you can always choose another way out. There are tons of ways to off yourself without actually offing yourself and you'll be fondly remembered.

Choose the coward's way out and you may be remembered but you'll be remembered as a gutless coward who blamed everybody else for his problems. Kill a bunch of people and then chicken out and you will be rememebered as a cowardly sonofabitch like the one in Tokyo.

24 April 08

Good day and welcome to another oped. Today it's all about crisis of faith. More specifically the crisis of faith in Iraq. There used to be a tyrant and a couple of his minions running that country. Now there is a shadow government. Brave guys who keep stepping up to try to bring the place out of the middle ages. Or something. Along with them are a few U.S. Military folks, trying to do good. As I've stated, you can not 'support the military' while at the same time saying they are worng. This is seen as a damn weakness. You can't tell the enemy that the population is against fighting and also say that you support the toops. That's hippie shit from the '60s, from before traitorous bastards just said 'to hell with our guys, we want the enemy to win.'

At any rate (hippie fucks turn off now. You aren't welcome.) I had a crisis of faith. Facing a bit of disillusionment over the years, I was beginning to doubt our aims. I was a backslider in the attempt to spread world democracy. I know it sounds simplistic, but I've watched a few shows that show the Iraqi poeple no longer affraid, feeling free to express their ideas, and most of all, free to vote.

Is this worth one American life? That's where I have a hard time checking the right block. Do I care who runs Iraq? Not really. Do I care about any other country other than my own? Not a whole lot. Canada and Mexico, maybe. Brazil, say? No, not at all. But like it or not, we are all on this same planet and fighting over it is pretty rediculous.

As far as I'm concerned there should be one world government. If Banglidesh needs food, the world sends it. However, the world needs to point out to them that their shitty little country floods every damn year. It's not rocket science.

Yes, it does appear that most of the world needs to be led around by the nose. Bangledesh is a prime example. Some countries, such as those that have been led around by the nose by dictators, need to be shown a new way. That's spreading democracy, not through fear and intimidation but through choice. I support this.

It's the will of the people that I support. From what I see, they want a voice, they want to choose. I want that for them. How much? So much so that all the time my youngest son has talked about joining the military, I have never once tried to talk him out of it. Not once. In fact I've tried to talk my oldest in to going in. I'm willing to send my sons out to fight, because I believe in what we are doing.

Hoist all the signs you want, go march in rallies, protest. That is your right. It's your right because of those who have stood up to tyrany and those who have sent their sons to stand up to tyrany.

I can't believe you people can't see that. Just because you have freedom doesn't meant the work is done.

9 February 2008

And welcome to it. It's been a long time but I'm not really a writer. I couldn't be a columnist with deadlines to work under. But enough about me. This is about what pisses me off.

Today's subject is inspired by all the anti-U.S. sentiment so prevelant, even in our own media. From time to time some subject will show up on a forum that I frequent. Often times it starts as something totally unrelated to U.S. foriegn policy. It could be about how many more Commodore 64s were sold in the States. What starts it doesn't matter, the hatred of America will surface. I guess it's because there's so much of it, especially on the internet where the truth, half-truths and even outright lies can spread with little or no fact checking done by the readers. Any budding author can say whatever they want and spread it as gospel. A few readers may actually read what is written. They repeat it, with a link to the original. It gets picked up and repeated by an ever increasing readership who don't bother putting the link. Before long nobody knows where this 'fact' came from. All they know is they've heard it. After a time, one can say that they've heard 'it' everywhere and thus it must be true. Snopes is full of this kind of crap. Well that's my 2 on how rumors become fact so much easier with the internet.

Anyway, with the internet, it's very easy for this hatred of all things American to spread. I won't bring up WWI, where our sudden influx of fresh warriors forced and end to the war. Or WWII where again, our warriors added so much to the allied side that the axis powers had no chance. Like it or not though, at the very least, these two wars would have gone on a lot longer, with more destruction on both sides, had not the U.S. entered into them. There's just no arguing that.

Now I can't say that I agree with everything we've done, supposedly in the interest of our own security. No, I admit that a lot of what is done is in the interest of big business. Corporate greed has fueled much of our meddeling in affairs which are none of our business. Prime example: Oil. Everybody and their dog claims that the only reason we are kicking ass in the middle east is because of oil. You sound like a broken record. Enough already, I'm sick of it. We have a long track record of just doing what is right. Sure there's plenty left to do in places where that don't have oil. But then we can't do it all. We're already stretched to our limit. What we do is try to do the right thing in the hopes that the rest of the freeworld will step up and help. Unfortunately, all too soon, lies and half truths turn weak parts of the freeworld against us. We end up shouldering most of the burden and the mouthy minority soon have everybody believing it's our affair and we are in the wrong.

Weapons of Mass Destruction(tm): We now all know that there are probably no WMDs left in Iraq. What everybody convieniently forgets is that there most certaintly were WMDs at one point. Saddam Hussein used them on the Kurds. (This is where I disagree with what we did, or in this case didn't do. We should have went right back there and stomped his ass, then and there.) Hussein decided to play coy with the UN inspectors and not let them look around. So by the time the inspectors were allowed to look and found nothing, it was very easy to think he had used the time to hide them. The President acted on his best information. We went in to look ourselves. Ok there weren't any. But the blight that was Saddam Hussein was so this time, we kicked his ass. We were late but we finally did what was right. And now we have internet weenies telling everybody who listens that we were in the wrong. Would anybody have listened had we gone back after he killed the Kurds and stomped his ass then? I doubt it. That was our mistake.

The short attention span brigade doesn't have the patience for what it takes to destroy terrorists. They want everything now. This Iraq and Afghanistan thing has gone on too long for them. They can't stay the course. But I think most freedom loving people can. What they need is somebody to tell them they are right and we are doing the right thing. You are right and we are doing the right thing. Unfortunately I'm just one internet weenie. What is needed is for the media to get on board. Unfortunately they too are driven by the short attention span brigade. They are worried about ratings. They don't want viewers to stop watching because the War on Terror has become old news. So they don't pay much attention to it. They are affraid to take a side. They just report numbers and incidents. On this they don't know what to do so they do nothing. Ironicly that's what they were supposed to be doing all along; report the facts. Now they don't want to get involved. So what's left?

What's left is the government i.e. George Bush. He hasn't been doing much stumping for the war effort either. Ronald Reagan would have been on the tube regularly, making us feel good about what we are doing and reminding us that this will take time, that we must stay the course. So in that respect, GWB is not doing a good job. If we felt we were doing right, we wouldn't be paying attention to the U.S.A. haters. Does that make us wrong? No. It makes us really lousy at global public relations.

Another problem here is there are those still whining about the 2000 election. They are like a bunch of children who will throw a fit until they get their way. The issue was settled according to the laws of the land. Apparantly the whinners are wrong because they man was relected in 2004. Get over it. The country is still devided over something that happened eight years ago and has been a non-issue for four. This just makes it easier for the U.S. haters to spread their hatred. I quote FMJ "Why don't you jump on the team and come on in for the big win?"

26 October 2007

Greetings...not the draft kind of greetings or the jury duty kind of greetings, just a freindly hello sort of thing. Today my favorite rant subject is - gaming development. Naturally I'm referring to your high-end games, not minesweeper or that sort. No, I'm talking the ubiquitous First Person Shooter or FPS. I just spent a lovely hour of my 'ME' time trying to play Medal of Honor: Pacific Assault. This is a WWII FPS which came out in 2004. My system is a AMD dual core something running at 2.2mhz. Nvidia built in grafix card (still not a good idea) made around 2006. The point being this thing still lags on a machine made two years after the game came out. Ahead of your time is all well and good but if you design for non-existant systems you are a dickhead.

Back in my early computer i.e C=64 days, programmers made games portable. The same game would have many versions for different systems. Those days are, sadly, gone so now programmers use all that extra time making games that look really pretty but don't run on your average sytem. It's rediculous. They seem to think that you should be willing to go buy a whole new computer just to play their game. This of course makes The Bill happy and also very rich but it makes the working stiffs much, much poorer.

There's no reason for it. I have the older games and they look just fine. (MoH, CoD which play just fine, though CoD requires turning off one of the dual processors by changing the 'affinty'.) Where the lag in MOH: PA comes from I don't know. I do know that if I shut down one processor, like I have to do to play just to Call of Duty, it makes the japs run in slow motion. That I could live with but the whole scene slows down so I can't just slaughter them.

To me it doesn't make any sense to make a game/program/application or whatever that 95% of users won't be able to use that way you designed it to be seen. Infact I find it downright arrogant on the part of game developers to expect us to run out and spend a thousand bucks or so just to play their latest creation. Perhaps a bit of humility should be on the programmers corriculum at wherever they learn their craft. But no, it's like the LInux crowd - one is not worthy if one can't participate. Sheesh.

It's enough to make me swear off of PC games all together. You know if your local grocer regularly pissed on the apples just so you'd have to buy his apple washer, you'd quit buying apples there, I expect. Even if they were great apples. This is the same deal. Why should I be expected to go buy a new machine on the off chance that this new whammo game will work, which btw, I have done and it still don't work. Perhaps you should have spent less time making pretty pictures where they can't even be seen, and spent some time making this thing work on dual cores.

In short, I'm done buying new computers to play one video game on. With the thousands of games already out there, in every concievable genre, I see no reason to buy anything that doesn't work. So the next time I buy a game of which my machine meets the minimum specs, and it doesn't work to my satisfaction, it's going back on the pile and you primadonas can sit on your precious pet project as it languishes on the shelves. I hope you jackasses still get a peice of the action like the real programmers did back in the day because you'd get some meaningful feedback, right where you'd notice. Sadly I fear that you are all just 9-5 clock punchers who don't put anything into a game except your time, as long as it's paid for. So be it, maybe you can sell that shit in India. I hear they are cutting edge over there. I at least have had enough.

23 July 2007

Good day and welcome to it. Today I think the subject is slavery. For as long as man has been around and up until very recently, losers have been slaves. Be they white, black, brown, red, yellow or green, if you lost a fight, one option was to make you a slave. Other options involved the losers living for a much shorter period of time and usually left quite a mess.

All of the seven wonders of the world were most likely built by slaves. They say the pyramids were built by free men. I'm sceptical. Be that as it may, most great structures of the ancient world were built by slaves. If they were around today, chances are they'd feel pretty proud of their work. Unfortunately most heavy labor slaves were worked to death and so it's unlikely that you'll find one that helped build the Flavian Amphitheater walking around Rome today.

A slave's life meant nothing. If one worked very hard and never displeased his master, a slave could at least hope for freedom one day, unlike the other losers who were simply tortured to death or killed outright. Many, many slaves were freed by their masters. Of course there were so many slaves that the percentage is really low. Most slaves died slaves. A slave could be snuffed just for burning the dormice.

Nevetheless, slave labor built almost everything in ancient times. Chiefly because it's cheaper to beat somebody than to pay them. Slaves rowed galleys and slaves cooked for the weathly. Slaves built great structures and slaves picked grapes to make wine for the wealthy. Slaves did everything so the rich didn't have to or pay someone else to have to. That was just the way it was.

Slaves also helped build the USA and most likely every other country or empire in history. Slaves were just good for business. Sure slavery was wrong...looking back. But slavery was also necessary since paying 100 men to pluck cotton for 16 hours a day would have cost a fortune. Let's face it, cotton was a much needed commodity for clothes. The cost would have been astronomical if paid labor had been used to harvest cotton and other crops. The north also relyed on cotton. They just didn't like how it was made. I doubt they'd have liked the price markup of their fineries if they had to bear the cost of paid cotton pickers.

At any rate, african slaves were rounded up, by other africans, and sent off to the cotton fields so that the citizens could have clothes. (nudists came along later, besides it gets cold in the north). For a couple hundred years they toiled away in the sun, picking cotton, tobacco, rutabegas, whatever. Sometimes abused, most certaintly worth nothing more than the amount of work they could do. A miserable existance. It is sad.

Not so sad that their decendants deserve anything in compensation. They aren't the ones who suffered. They never wore shackles or tasted the lash so why would they think they deserve money for something endured by their ancestors? Give me a break. For all I know, one of my ancestors was a Carthegenian galley slave. Does that mean Tunisia owes me money? Hell no. The old slave states are gone, as are all of the slaves. Nobody is owed anything for american slaves. Hell, I'll say it, the descendents of slaves are now freer and wealthier than they would have been if they'd stayed in Africa. Those same descendents may very well have died from cholera or something anyway. So let's stop all the slave reparation nonsense and just get on with life. Sure a black person may encounter racism from time to time but racism is'nt slavery and has nothing to do with slavery. It's racism and it's probably been around longer than slavery so we might as well get used to it.

11jun07 or the DOD date, 070611, the most sensible date nomenclature I can think of.

The subject de jure is those hard working guys in the trash pick up service: Many of you poopoo the job. Many of you ignore them. Many of you may look down on them. Shame on all of you. The trash guys are a vital service to the comunities that they serve, no less than the police or fire service. Granted you don't direcly pay for police and fire. But all of them work everyday. All of them work no matter what the weather, year around. On top of the similarities between the best known (and photographed services), the trash guys have to haul off your crap. As an owner of a small part of this huge world, I can say that that is a huge amount of crap. Yet they show up, everyday, just to haul off the garbage that you don't want. It's mostly shit that archeologists won't want in 1,000 years either and archeologists will take anything. So will the trash guys. Broken VCRs? Sure, put them on top. Maybe they'll take them for themselves. If they can use them, recycle them for a dollar or two, whatever; it's out of my life. That's good enough for me.

I've seen trash guys picking up trash in weather that I didn't even want to walk to my car in. Trash guys pick up in any weather. They may run late but they get there.

If the cops, firemen and trash guys all walked off the job the same day, what do you think you'd catch first? A bullet from a robber, a fire in your house or some desease from all the garbage we generate? On an individual basis it's a toss up but in the long run, sanitation or lack therefof would do us in, as it has done in the past.

Trash guys, they don't get any respect and it's too bad. I respect these tough guys (and maybe gals) who cart off my unwanted kit, dirty drawers, various, mysterious left overs from the fridge and my used rubbers. I've mentioned it to my coworkers but they too poopoo the job, like any schmo could do it; sort through everybody's garbage, day in and day out. Like trash guys were some unclean servants. Maybe you could do it but would you? I for one say bravo, trash guys. You guys do a hell of a job and I, for one, appreciate it.

26 May 2007

Good day and welcome to another fine day under the fascist rule of the Recording Industry Associaion of America. Frankly I hate having the word America in their moniker. It gives us Americans a bad name in the eyes of the world and in the eyes of me. Hell I'm ashamed to say the pledge of allegience anymore. And it's not the entire country, it's just a bunch of no talent hacks from Hollyworld who think they can dictate to the rest of the world, what you can do with your music.

Now I'm not trying to say that downloading every song you hear on the radio is okay and that you shouldn't buy CDs. No, if you really like a band and if you intend to listen to them over and over, buy the damn CD. Not that I want to give the RIAA bastards any more money but I believe that you should pay for stuff you use. Hell, I love Triumph for example. I bought all their albums back in the day. I plan to buy the CDs some time. I have no problem with that. But only because the format is more durable than albums are and turntables are hard to find these days. That was short-sighted. Still for 30 years we bought our music on vinyl.

Anyway, I've already bought the songs but if I were to download the same songs I'd have to prove myself innocent of piracy if summonded by our RIAA overlords. That would entail me engaging a lawyer for a start just so I could prove to these RIAA dickheads that I was entitled to listen to the songs. It's not like they actually bother to find out if I have bought these songs. No, they only have to send a threatening email and you're on the defensive, right off the bat. That was in the local paper so there's no link. In essence a few (more) college folks got caught in the downloading music world by the RIAA spies and were send us up some threatening emails. Now give me a clue here: Are not my internet activities supposed to be private, if not in a real sense, at least in a legal sense? I'd reckon not with the RIAA spies running to politicians every time they get a sniff of something they think they can make a buck on.

At any rate the college kids settled, at least the ones we heard about. I'd bet that the RIAA pricks even make somebody sign a nondisclosure form if they win, so they don't threaten RIAA's cash cow, though I have no proof - sort of like the RIAA gestapo.

How about this? You RIAA morons shut down all recording business. Don't cut any more tracks from any hacks. Let's just see who needs who.

P.S. I bet you don't like being called morons and gestpo, do you? You've got degrees and stuff so you think you are so important. Guess what, like the aristocrats of old, if you were gone, the average Joe wouldn't notice. I guess you are really just the mouthy bully with the big lawyers and money on your side. We are not impressed. Without the consumer, you're nothing. Jerks.

15 Apr 07

Ah, spring time. Tis the season for enjoying the fresh air and sunshine, communing with nature and generally having fun in the nice weather. However I can do none of that because I have a house and since I have a house, every time I look outside, all I see is work. Fuck a bunch of outdoors. No hot babes in bikinis for me. Nope, freaking weeds and a shitty roof that will need replacing in a year or two. Grass that continues to grow despite my not watering and weeds that grow faster than the grass.

My front yard is small since one side of my lot angles. No shortage of volunteers to mow that. Hell, that takes 15 minutes. Set yourself to the task of my backyard and you are in for a rather lousy couple of hours.

The back yard is possessed by the devil. There's about 20 different species of weeds living there - some of which absolutely love weed-n-feed. Add to that all the stuff that the kids and the wife leave laying out there, stuff that will cause a heart stopping noise when hit but the mower, and you have an exhausting experience full of no fun. There's a species of tree/weed which grows along the left fence that not only has big stalks that have to be sawed off but also grow over so that they hit you in the face with the branches. These 'trees' happen to grow on the neighbor's side of the fence. Unfortunatly they have a wooden fence beside the chainlink one, so there's sort of a no man's land where these mutant bastards live. When they get to be too much, I try to cut them off below the fence using a saw, clippers, pruning shears or whatever I can get under or through the fence. Otherwise I have to duck under them to mow the weeds underneath. This leaves me covered in 'nature' which falls off of the leaves and stick to my clothes. Plus we now have a dog and aside from the doggie refuse, he likes to dig holes so I can see myself breaking an ankle out there one day...one day this summer perhaps.

Then there's the alley. The alley makes the backyard look like the lawn of some english estate. Aside from the same weeds from the yard and a few others, there's new and weird stuff, especially along my fence. Plus various vines and even baby trees growing through my fence. There's also huge foot deep ruts from various service vehicles that like cruise the alley from time to time. Those make the already strenuous task of mowing it a physical exertion just short of requiring Paul Bunyan. I bought some dirt once and filled in the ruts. They were back before the summer was out. You can't win. In Dallas they have cement alleys but you can't put all your yard trash on the curb for the trash guys. Which is the better deal here?

Anyway, I just finished the sections from hell, which haven't been touched since last summer, and now the yard doesn't look too bad. Oh it looks bad but not bad enough to warrant mowing. I've spent my two hours of hell for the week already. So welcome spring. I hope you apartment dwellers enjoy the warm weather. We house dwellers will be getting our fresh air, not looking at hot babes by the pool but by pushing a machine around in ever smaller rectangles and ripping weeds out. Which deal is better? Well we get to nuke fireants too.

8Jan07

Good day. Another oped follows. So I just watched another show about the famous Christmas Truce during WWI. That was 1914, the first year of the war. Not really all that surprising, concidering that the world had been mostly peaceful for a long time, up until then. Young men, thrust into war, found themselves a few yards from other young men who they had been told to hate. For what? They didn't know. It wasn't as clear as it was in WWII. WWII it was clear as day: The Japs had attacked us, Hitler was trying to take over the world. Where do I sign? Ofcourse, the brits and the rest had their own reasons. Hitler captured Poland, Poland was and ally and he was obviously trying to take over the world. Anyway, all of the players had a pretty clear reason to stomp on the axis powers.

Not so in WWI: A serb shot some prince in Austria so Austria declares war on Serbia. England is allied with Austria. Germany is allied with Serbia...and for what? Some jackass shot some monarch. Big deal. It really makes no sense. No sense except in the political arena. In the game of global power plays it makes sense to somebody that a couple of people get shot by some random loser and thus 'THIS MEANS WAR!'. Oh and for those of you not up on the whole WWI 'cause', there were a shitload of guys out to off the prince that day. The failure to protect this guy was tanamount to treason but at the very least, completely incompetant, if not in collusion. There were guys that had weapons misfire, grenades were thrown and yet the dumbass driver kept plodding along, and finally turned up a street where the jackass himself just happened to be having coffee. Oh yeah, nothing suspicious there.

Anyway, WWI: Started on very thin reasons. It was a new war, only a few months old. And teh Germans were singing Christmas carols. Said carols touched the allied troops and, all of a sudden, peace broke out along the lines. Oh not all of the lines, but a lot. No, in some places die hard assholes who wanted war and death decided that we can't have any damn peace. So they kept the heat up. Even if one side or the other tried to make a truce, the war was kept on in those areas. Probably a lot of new leiutenants, out to make a name for themselves. Wanting to go home to daddy with a lot of medals so maybe daddy will give them some attention, finally. I don't know.

But what if, what if all the soldiers had decided not to fight each other? What if there was no one left to fight except the officers? Say major or colonel on up. Would they? Would they strip down and grab a rifle and slug it out, runing the risk of themselves getting killed or maimied? Would they have been so driven to keep the war going? I doubt it, not with their own asses on the line. remember too that this was the end of the Victorian era, where oficers were lords and masters and ranks were just peons - pawns, only for protecting and advancing the careers of the allmighty officers.

Anyway, these officers decided that it was high treason to 'fraternize with the enemy', by jove. Not good for one's career, wot? A bunch of self important officers decided that those actually doing the fighting and the dieing were not allowed to work out their own peace. I suppose this makes sense to somebody but it sure doesn't make sence to me. The rank and file soldier comes from the rank and file citizentry and if the citeazentry can work out their problems, who are the higehr ups to tell us to fight each other? What gives them the right? Now I'm no peacenick, but to me, if the people can get along, who are these elected officials to tell us that we are not allowed to fraternize. If the grunts can get along, and remember the axis dudes spoke german while the allies spoke english, yadayada with a nod to other languages spoken on both sides (damn PCs) but they got along and exchanged gifts, showed pictures, played football (there, PC) despite the lack of a common language.

So, on Chrstmas Eve, 1914, the common people met and found that they were just alike. They played together, they talked together, they drank together, they met and liked each other. Unfortunatly, the officers would have none of this and promply reported it to high command who put the kibosh on the whole thing. So after a couple of days of this evil fraternization, it was halted, not by the ones actually doing the fraternizing, but their 'superiors' who just couldn't stand the idea of having armys that actually liked each other.

War is stupid. germany and Japan are our, the US's, best buddies. What was all that war shit about? Politics. England is probably our best ally and, hell, we stole this country from them. None of it makes any sense. Unfortunately none of my wisdom applies to the middle east. The big problem I see is that those people seem to tell you what they think you want to hear so you can never figure out what they want. If that's the cradle of civilisation, I'd say it's time to get a new cradle. This one is full of termites.

And a belated MERRY CHRISTMAS and a Happy New Year.

05Dec06:

Good day and welcome to another oped. We stand here poised just a couple days away from yet another Pearl Harbor day - DEC 07. Today I'm all over the atomic bombing of Japan. A lot of people on the net appear to feel sorry for the godless jap bastards. Those bastards would have fought to the death for their beloved emperor. Come on, it's idiotic to think that the allies could have taken Japan without massive losses - on both sides. men, women and children. Sure, I feel for the people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. However they had a relatively uneventful war experience up until the time that their cities were wiped off the map. It was probably paradise to them, at least in Hiroshima. From what I've heard it was nice. So they were probably the typical 'the war doesn't affect me so let it go on as long as my lifestyle doesn't change'. No, they were no different from us. However, before your heart bleeds too much, look around for pictures of what the Japanese did to the Chinese. Plenty of dead women and children there.

I doubt the average jap soldier on those far off atolls cared a whole hell of a lot about Hiroshima and it's comfort level. Still, we'll never know what the actual soldiers thought. Probably along the lines of 'it's about time they felt the sting of war'. All we have is revisionist history, that is what is taught in schools. And what seems to be taught is that bombing the shit out of Japan was evil and imoral yada yada. Why? Because we won. Because we get to write the history and what is happening is all the frustrated, uninformed masses now have an outlet to get their messages accross, after 60 years of getting their asses kicked in bars when they were foolish enough to spout this crap in public. The fact that they are a minority doesn't seem to matter, the whiners get the stage. Why? because they are usually unemployed losers who have all the time in the world to hang around on the internet because they have no job, no social life in short nothing that makes life worth living...except their little tirades about how evil America is. Even if they have to dig back 60 years, nothing is too obscure. So they want to paint America as evil, they will dig back as far as possible in search of supposed evidence, no matter how pathetic.

Thus we arrive: the blowing the shit out of Japan accomplished one major thing, the major thing. It allowed Hirohito to save face. It's that simple, in my opinion. Hirihito didn't want to see his country wiped out in what he knew would be a futile effort, but he was trapped by the code of bullshito or whatever. He couldn't surrender...at least he couldn't surrender without having to gut himself. Whether he did it to maintain his own comfort level, to appease his generals, to make his mistress happy, or even simply for his people, I don't know. But it's very obvious that he was never going to resign nor was he going to surrender Japan.

Now we're stuck. Hirohoto wasn't stuck, he just had to sit on his royal ass. No, it was up to Harry Truman to make the call: Send in thousands of soldiers to take the place or bomb the shit out of it and make the bastards surrender. To me it's obvious. Bomb the shit out of the place. Give them something to look forward to that is so terrifying that even die-hard Japanese will think twice about facing it. Then when Hirohito throws in the towel, he can look like he's doing it for his people rather than his own ass. Nevertheless, he was looking out for his own ass and he won, in that he got to stay in power. But he did it on the deaths of thousands of his own people.

But so what, the war ended. Maybe Japan could have won. I'm thinking not. We would have simply poured more men and material in until we took Japan and the result would likely be the same. Who knows, maybe they would still hold a grudge and we'd be watching them still to this day.

No, the a-bomb choice is a pretty obvious one to me. Why send millions of troops in when you can send one bomber crew? It's fairly obvious and those that would detract from the tough decision that Truman made, simply weren't there and indeed may not be here at all, had the waves of soldiers been sent in to take Japan. That's a real irony right there. Give 'em Hell, Harry!

23Sep06:

One could wonder what I have to say at this point. I do myself as I've forgotten the topic. Not only that but I have forgotten all of my previous topics as well. For instance I completly forgot that I did a rant on TV remotes until I was scrolling through this lage page to see if one of the partials I found on my drive had ever been finished and posted. It hasn't. No, really, I had a topic and I should have written it down but didn't because I figured that I could remember what I wanted to write about long enough to find the source for this page and open it up in notepad. I was wrong. Now I'm scrolling topics. It's not like I don't have anything that pisses me off. i do, it's just that I need something that pisses me off and that I can rant about. brb

Well, I started a list of topics in the past, I've consulted it. The problem is that I forgot what I wanted to write about the topics on the list so that's no help at all.

Let's talk about respect. "let's" meaning me. I was raised to respect my elders and for the most part I do, with the possible exception of a former president or two. Even those I would defer to to some extent because they are my elders. Granted I too am an elder these days so 'elder' is a relative term. Now that I'm almost 50, I'm not all that respectful of somebody that is five years older say. I mean I've seen about as much of the place as he has so I tend to view him as a peer rather than an elder. Thus, no deference on my part but I will listen to what he has to say. Now somebody in their 60's, that is still my elder so I'll show respect as I was taught.

Now the problem is, as I've said, I am somewhat of an elder myself. Where's my respect? I was at some damn water park a long time ago, before I became a full elder. I waited in line until we got to the top of this giant-ass slide thing. Somehow, my line got closed before I slid so I slid over to the other line to take my turn. There was a kid in line before me so I waited and then tried to get in line. When I tried to cut into the other line, I was chastized by some kid who wanted to follow his friend down the slide. He was somewhat respectful though and probably a nice kid. Hell, he's probably in his 30s by now, it's been that long. Anyway he was mostly repectful. I mean it's not like I climbed up the side of the 100ft tower just to cut in line. Anyway, I let him go because he whined and I just barged into the next slot. They seemed confused when I finished the slide next. I guess they had another friend coming down but I wasn't going to stand up there all day. Still, this guy had learned respect at some point. Hell, I think he even called me 'sir'. Nowadays, who knows what would happen. I guess that really didn't have a point, I still think kids these days are mostly still respectful of their elders.

Except on the damn internet. Never have I ever met somebody in person that was as mouthy as some denizens of the net. By God, you can tell some smart mouth little jackass that you have three times their pathetic time on the planet and that little bastard will not bat an eyelash before telling you to go screw yourself. Why is it that nobody ever taught them internet respect. I have always, for the most part, maintained the 'public' standard. If I won't say it in public, I try not to say it on the internet because I concider the internet a public place. That's something internet trolls don't care about. All they care about is bolstering their own selfesteem and scoring points with their e-friends. It'll be a sad thing when these trols get out into the real world and try to smooze using the people skills they learned on the internet. Of course the media, who will naturally make a 'report' on it will blame everybody and anybody but the trolls themselves. And whom can we thank for their total lack of people skils? That would be the parents' watch.

I was going to tie this with the hippies from the 70's but I'm too distracted so I'll save the 70's parent flame for some other time. Hide your bellbottoms and clogs.

16Aug:

Good day, and here we are in the midst of another fine update from our editorial staff, namely me. Today's topic de jure or however you spell it is...an American apology to the French. Yes, that's right, I want to apologise, as a lowly tax paying American, to the French for the way we treated you during and after the Revolution. I have been watching The Revolution on The History Channel. It's a great series about how my beloved country came to be. Throughout the whole thing it has been clear that without Ben Franklin and the French king and your troops and money, this country would not be here as it is. Actually that might not be so bad. We'd just be a British colony, subject to British taxation (as opposed to American taxation), British taste is all things (as opposed to American taste in all things which, if you're over 40, sucks. No, if you're over 40 in my country, you are pretty much made to feel obsolete. Ironicly, you also have the most disposable income but I assume you are supposed to have too much worldly experience to fall for cheap commercials, thus that group is ignored, which I find immencely funny. We have the most money, the reason for that is that we don't dump it all on the latest fad, unlike your run of the mill less than 40s. Anyway...). Well the most it affects me is that I have never had Steak and Kidney Pudding, which, while I have no idea what that is, I feel safe in saying that it sounds damn gross. If nothing else, for that, I say thanks. Apparantly Indian cusine is popular in England now. I've never had any of that either but it's probably for the best.

Anyway, it seems that Ben Franklin wined and dined the monied folk of France way back when. He spent his time during the Revolution, living the good life, wining and dining and apparantly playing chess with France's social elite, all to get money for the Cause. He even pissed off his son enough that they broke ties. What a dedicated man he must have been. At any rate, what we needed most at that time was money, lots of money. Ben got it and France gave it. Now of course France gave money mostly so that we could make England look like a fool on the world stage and they could fight a war with England by proxy but they gave it nevertheless. In fact, they gave till it almost bankrupted the country. It really is amazing. What is more amazing is that after the war had seemingly been won and France had about been ruined, Ben Franklin went back and got more money from them to set up the country.

Not being a history scholar or indeed even interested in history up until a few years ago, I can't say for sure but to hear it told on the show, France got...no term I can think of can come up with sounds right except to say that France got fucked over after the Revolution. There's just no other way to say it. We used France like a rich widow and then cast her away when she was of no further use. They got nothing. Another show blames the French Revolution on the peasants' unwillingness to eat potatoes but I'd bet that our little problems had quite an effect on affairs in France as well. We did get a cool statue out of it though. I guess they weren't too mad.

Be that as it may, I feel we once owed France a great debt, however after two world wars in which France had to be bailed out from German occupation, I'd say we're even. Your continued arrogance and bitterness is now uncalled for, your continued indifference to the rest of the world is dangerous, both to you and to everybody else. I seek your participation in world affairs that are exploding around you and I would like to think that you are smart enough to see that isolationism has not worked for you in the past. You will not be left unscathed, whether you put your head in the sand or not.

How about a nice game of chess?

26 July 2006:

My infrequent updates compel me to add years to the date. Today is a topic of great import to me: Getting older - it's inevitable. If your lucky, by the time you get to be my age, you'll have a great spouse and a couple of good progeny. Hopefully a good paying job, even if it is one you hate. A good home life makes the rest bareble. I've given up on the housewife thing, something I think makes everybody involved the most happy. Mom at home when the kids get home and the wife at home and the house in shape when the husband gets home. As I've stated before I have no problem with the wife/husband thing being reversed but somebody has to be in charge of the castle. But that ai'nt going to happen in my castle so I can't expect it of others.

Anyway, as you get older you gain experience. You remember things, things that happened before others were even born. Things like the Moon landings, infact the whole space program. I don't but as an example. I remember the teacher pushing in the monitors when I was in elementary school so we could watch a Gemini launch or a space walk or whatever. Unfortunately I didn't really care too much. To most of us it meant that we didn't have to pay attention to anything. It was fun time. I regret that now. I wish I had paid attention because it was history I was ignoring. Well I was a kid.

I remember walking all the way to downtown just to rumage around the bait store and look at fishing lures and occasionally, causing much rejoicing from the store owner, buy the occasional rubber worm or two. Neither us nor our parents worried about us getting kidnapped. I'm sure it happened but it wasn't all over the news shows because the news wasn't 24hrs then. Not that it's not important stuff but if there's a child kidnapper in Arizona, what does that have to do with us in Texas? Why is this news to your viewers? They only had a half hour to fill so only real news made the cut, stuff the viewers needed to know. Not some car wreck in some other state which had no relevance to us at all. Stories nowadays are meant to elicite an emotional response, not to inform. That is not the media's job. Their job is simply to inform period. The news is not a form of entertainment. Since it's my site: THE NEWS IS NOT A FORM OF ENTERTAINMENT! IT'S JOB IS TO INFORM! They don't have a right to influence us but in this age of constant news bombardment, they do. Since kids can't walk to a bait store anymore, they watch TV.

I remember when stuff was affordable and if one saved, even poor folks could afford the occasional vacation to the coast. Nowadays everybody feels they are entitled to whatever they want. Even if they don't have a job, everybody just wants but doesn't feel that anything is worth earning. I was poor growing up, well our middleclass got lower when the cost of living passed my dad's static paycheck. But I didn't know it because the media wasn't on TV 24 hours a day telling me that if we weren't cruising off to the Bahamas for spring break, we were losers. No wonder everybody thinks they are entitled. Nobody ever says 'hey, going to the Bahamas costs money, large amounts of money'. No they just say 'You should go to the Bahamas whenever you have a long weekend'. 'You must have this car. It's $35,000 but unless you have this car, chicks won't love you.' Which implys that if you drive a used old beater you are a waste of skin and you'll never have love. I can tell you that that one is bullshit. 'You simply must have us manage your portfolio or you'll starve once you retire at 50.' Which implys of course that if you don't even have a portfolio, you are a loser with the added gouge that only a loser would even have to work past 50. No the good life means that you have to make a fortune, retire at 50, sail the bahamas and have some over priced piece of shit car waiting for you at the docks when you get back. Blow me. The main thing is that this stuff comes with time. You don't get it all at once unless you're rich. You don't have to try to own the world by the time you're 30 and I can tell you for a fact, those that are 40 aren't willing to give it up anyway. And those of us sneaking up on 50 aren't going to bow to you upstarts either. Don't be affraid to earn your way like those before you.

But anyway, things were reasonably priced. If you made minimum wage you could at least afford to eat. Now prices of basic foods like bread, soup, beer, Hamburger helper, while not outragiously priced, are at least rediculously priced. Admittedly the wife is more an expert in this area than I am. At anyrate I clearly remember my mom coming out of the grocery store after shopping for our weekly groceries complaining how they'd spent $20 and they'd have a cart or two full of stuff. Now a quick run to the store will cost you $100 and you only have a few little plastic bags to show for it. Something is wrong but they are counting on youngsters not knowing any better.

No wonder the internet and cable TV has taken over raising our kids. In my day a highschool kid could work and save and afford a used car, gas for that car, parts to fix that car, be able to fix that car, the occasional date, burgers when the folks were having something vile at home. Now you can't work on your own car, used cars are mostly junk that can't be repaired, movies are still reasonably priced entertainment I suppose, without them we'd have first run movies on pay-per-view. However, we've managed to kill drive-ins so I guess wer're capable of killing movie theaters too. Seems a shame, what say ye, 30 somethings? Here's your chance to make a difference. Anyway, burgers are rediculous and not even that good. The police are more than willing to arrest a youngster for any minor infraction not to mention that they are willing to draw down on any one. There's no such thing as a cop that went 20 without ever pulling his gun these days. The tactics are overwhelming force and that force, nine times out of ten is unwarranted. Everybody is spring loaded to the pissed off position and it's not making things better. Who's to blame? The paranoia spreading news media, of course. News is big business these days and the talking heads you worship every night are really living the good life. Turn the bastards off. Everybody is making claims about the evil government intruding and spying blah blah blah. The news people go so far as to tell you where you should eat with those 'let's storm a kitchen and see if we can catch a roach on film' commando raids. Who doesn't have roaches some times? The place is just trying to make a living and maybe the inspectors caught them on a bad day. One bad shot from the media and you may end up shut down. Who gave them that power? I didn't but I remember when the news just reported the news.

Now some may attribute my ravings to an old duffer that just happens to have been able to figure out how to work the internet but I can assure you, things have indeed changed and mostly not for the better. I didn't start out to rail on the news media but the more I thoiught the more I could pin on them. I went with the flow of the beer as is the tradition on this page. Whether it is the media's fault or not, the best thing about getting old is that I'll be dead before this world really starts to drive me crazy. Who in hell would want to live to be 100?

19 Jan:

Well here we all are again. Todays topic is t3h internet - aka, spelling and you. In days of yore (aka before the interweb) when one spoke or wrote, one gernerally wanted his words to be understood.. It was the message, not the verbage that was important. One had to actually write ones thoughts with a pen or, in the latter days, a typewriter. Either way, one wanted to be understood. Nowadays if you frequent any forums on the net one is bombarded by pathetic phonics spelling, to the extent that it's become a joke to spell 'the' as t3h. Sad in the extremus. Apparantly one just has to blab ones thoughts onto the interweb and it's to be respected without regard as to spelling and puncuation.

Now I'm no scribe though I do try to make my skreed legible. If I sober up and find some parts illegible then I change them, but I don't change the thrust of the crap I speel. Even if I sober up, I don't come back and change what I wrote. I do bother to fix extreme spelling and punctuation errors. Those who post in forums, indeed seemingly live to post in forums, don't seem to care if what they spill onto the net is legible. No, it seems that the more one mispells the more one is l33t or something. If you try to point out their mistakes all you get is something along the lines of 'this isn't a class room. I'm not getting graded'. This ofcourse gives the whole game away and I should at least be able to ignore that particular poster's crap. The sad truth is that I sit waiting to see who will slam the illiterate moron for his spelling and for the inevitable reply, 'this isn't a classroom blah blah blah'.

Here's a clue, if you sound like a moron in your writing then you will be concidered to be a moron until you prove otherwise. It's not really a fair world and until you see it as a cross section of society and thus submit yourself to the judgement of your peers, and be willing to accept their judgement as the judgement of society, you are a pathetic internet worm and not worthy of any more attention.

Here's the thing, certain forums are frequented by subintelligent beings. If you hang out in those forums, you will either become like them or decide they are morons and then move on or you will decide that you like what the have to say and not worry that they can't spell.

I would submit to you that if a person can't be bothered to proofread what they write and/or doesn't care if they can be read, their screed just isn't worth reading. Chances are that even though they may agree with your particular point of view, if they are illiterate morons, do you really want to side with them?

Basically I'm tired of illiterate morons telling me that I'm worng for correcting their spelling. I'm not talking about slamming one mispelled word. I'm talking about illegible crap like - some1, I'm hawt 4 u....can't quote any more because I don't read it and thus forgot it as soon as I saw it. This ain't a damn code room, morons. Print so somebody can read what you write.

And don't think you kiddies have some unbreakable code thing going. It's not that we can't read it, it's that we, who are literate, choose not to read it. Thus your message is only getting to your own patehtic little peers.

If you wish to have what you have to say to be read by those more intelligent than yourself, you must make it legible to the masses. Otherwise your just preaching to the same illiterate morons that are your peers. It's good to be old. It's good to be literate. Put down the net, pick up a book...and get some sun.

26 Oct:

Good day and welcome to another rant. Today it's about Supporting our troops pt. 2.

Not much has changed since the last time I addressed this. It's sort of a stalemate, similar to the start of Vietnam. The enemy is trying and hoping to wear down public support and get the public to force us to bail out on our obligation. Here the similarity ends.

One, we can fight this ground - easily. It's not an oppresive jungle with the humidity hovering between 99 and 101%. Our troops will not suffer heat exhaustion. Two - We are much better equipped. Oh very much better equipped. So much so that I want to reenlist just to play with all the new toys! Alas I'm too old.Three - It's not news anymore. In Vietnam the hot story every night was the Vietnam War. Now, it's hardly mentioned. You losers aren't news anymore. Quit being disfunctional morons, lay down your arms and rejoin society. Nobody cares about you and you have already lost. We are not your enemy. The idiotic leaders that you follow are your enemy and most of them have been arrested anyway. They are also living better than you now. Is it such a bad thing to have people of foreign origin walking your streets? Hey, we in the US have that everywhere. We handle it just fine. The problem is that you idiots are intolerent. All your leaders do is preach hatred. Your leaders are wrong and if you blindly follow them, you are a moron. Please don't be a moron. Join the 21st century. Hell, we'll even pay for it. If there's one thing we have besides arrogant citizens, it's money. Sure, you shun our money, you shun our way of life, you shun everything American. You are a moron. Not because you shun everything American but because you blindly hate and anything you hate you believe it is okay to kill. So I guess the world is supposed to be talor made to suit you? That's pretty self important.

Speaking of self important - Your mega leader is nothing but a spoiled brat. Osama bin Loudmoth may have given up all his wealth and chose to live with the common people but he sure didn't grow up that way. Do you think the well to do in the Middle East is cheering this idiot on? No, they have a comfortable life and they are happy. For you minions to plant bombs just to disrupt their happiness is just childish. I mean what are you thinking? Ask yourselves that. Something along the lines of 'These people are living life and are happy and I'm not so I want to make them as miserable as I am'? I mean come on, this is so pathetic. Do you really think bombing a bunch of kids getting candy from some GIs is furthering your cause at all?

In short, you are a bunch of terrorists blowing up people simply because you can't have things your way and you know, you never will because your way is simply wrong. People deserve to be happy, no matter where they live. If you choose not to be happy then shoot yourself in the head and end your miserable life alone. There are no virgins waiting for you just because you blow yourself up because you are mad at everybody. While you're at it notice that the ones who send you out of these great jihads seem rather reluctant to go themselves. Have a nice day.

14Sep05:

Howdy and welcome to another self-important rant. As most of you know, New Orleans and the gulf coast was hit by a rather huge hurricane not too long ago. For days I watched the news and listened to the SATERN net on the radio. (I'm a ham radio operator.) I was never able to help but I was there just in case. Anyway, after the winds died down, the media, aka my beloved Fox, started focusing on the people who were still in town. Eh human interest, what can you say? Then reports of looting and general chaos started and only got worse as the days wore on. Now this caught me off guard. I've only stopped in New Orleans once and never left the airport so I knew nothing about the place but I have seen lots of post hurricane reports on the news and, while there may have been some report of looting, there wasn't a constant stream of reports like this. The reports were always showing people saying how they are sad and lost everything blah blah but always there was the positive undertones. "We will rebuild". (Yeah sure, with my insurance premiums. In the same place where you just got wiped out. duh) Ahem, anyway - not this time. It was all about looting with some rumors about murder and rape in the Superdome, where some people went to wait out the storm. Damn, this was surely weird, not like any other hurricane I've heard of.

Well, now things have died down but almost as soon as the winds died down, the finger pointing started. Forget getting a handle on things. Forget rescuing stranded people. "I have to shift blame away from myself." That was the mayor and governor's first priority. Pathetic. However the reason they were so worried about shifting blame was because the blame falls squarely upon them. The city and states are the responsibility of the city and state governments and they were absent. They lost control of the city of New Orleans and so they are trying to make this somehow the president's fault. Again, the city and state are responsible for their own affairs. What the federal government does is help the state. They are not in total charge. But this help has to be requested. It was not, at least not in timely manner. You don't ask for help before the event, you don't ask for help before you even know what help is needed. You assess what you need then you ask. This too was not done. The governor wanted the place declared a disaster area before it was even hit. That's not how it's done. You didn't see the mayor in the superdome with a bullhorn, calling for order. You didn't see the governor flying over the place to assess the damage. All you saw was whining about how the federal govenment should have been there as soon as the winds died down. Again, that is not how it's done.

Our system gives great power to the states to run their affairs, to govern themselves. That's why Lousiana has Presidents of Parishes. They set up their own form of state government. Now when the state government was really needed to be strong, they folded up and ran away. (I should draw parallels to their French ties but I wont.) Now all they can do is point fingers.

It's no wonder there was so much chaos. The people of New Orleans saw no form of authority. Sure, most of us don't need a cop standing behind us to keep us from taking what's not nailed down but apparantly New Orleans has a lot of poor folks and so they felt this was a time to get what they felt they were owed. I don't know. I grew up poor but I didn't have any one constantly telling me we were poor so we were still pretty happy. Nowadays, poor folks are constantly reminded that they are poor and made to feel that they are entitled to better. They are, ofcourse, but that better doesn't come from government handouts. This they are not reminded of. The liberals want everybody to think that it's the government's job to take care of the population and thus there is a sense of entitlement within the poor of this country. So when the govenment breaks down, some people take it upon theirselves to get for themselves. I think this is what we saw in New Orleans.

Finally, what was not reported is the thousands of people who had enough sense and the means to get out of Dodge. I talked to one guy on the radio as he was leaving his home south of New Orleans. He said he was in Beaumont and was in stop and go traffic. Now this is some 300 miles from New Orleans and the traffic was still heavy so it's obvious that the majority of people from those areas did indeed get out but the media never mentions those. It's self sufficiency and not news worthy, not even on Fox. Speaking of self sufficiency, I spoke with this ham operator a few days later while he was heading back home to get his stuff. He had found a job and was moving to Houston. Talk about doing it on your own.

Welcome to Texas, all those who want to take care of yourself. For all the rest, the government will pump out your houses, rebuild them for you and the welfare checks will be coming soon. Go back where you came from.

14Apr05:

Gooday, and welcome to another oped thingy.

Today I shall ranteth upon "supporting our troops". This is a popular matra these days and frankly I wonder if those that mutter it so readily even understand wht it means. Let's start with a definition of what I think it means and see if you meet these criteria. It's my website so live with it. Supporting our troops means that you support what they are doing, you believe in their cause, you want them all back whole and you will do whatever it takes to see them win the day. Do you still support the troops or are you just giving it lip service?

Let's have a look: 1) Do I support what our troops are doing? Hell yes! Bringing peace and freedom to the middle east is a good thing, a damn good thing. Some of you call it interfering in another country's affairs and it's none of our business. You fail the test at step one.

2)This one is a cheap shot since it really means the same as 1. Get your own website. Yes, yes I do. Peace in the middle east is a damn fine idea. Won't stop stupid ass terrorists because they have to be stopped at the local level. Well, they can be stopped later on but to be totally wiped out, they have to be hunted down locally. See the Badder-Mienhof. They were a German terrorist group on the loose when I was a troop in Germany in the 70's. They were 'dealt with' by the German police, and not dealt with kindly I might add. As a result, most of you have never heard of them. This is what needs to be done in Iraq. Our troopers provide the general safety and back up so that the locals can go about wiping out the main threats to freedom and safety of civilians everywhere. I believe in their cause, do you?

3)You can tell that this is just a top of my head order because this one doesn't belong at three but I'm fair and balanced so here we are. I'm not even going to go here because anybody that wishes our troops harm is plainly a psycho. It took almost ten years before American support of our troops in Vietnam crawled through this slime pit of loathable disgust and I'm not going to even ask if anybody wants our guys and gals killed. You know who you are so get help, you need it. Yes I want all our folks back and whole - today, but that's not realistic as there is still a job to do so be safe, guys and gals.

4)What you can do. You want to help our fine men and women. So do I. The main thing is that you truly believe in them and what they are doing. Without support at home, real support not just lip service, their cause is lost and this entire thing is a waste. They believe in their cause and they are at the tip of the spear. Who are we to doubt their cause? Those of you that call the war unjust or whatever are wrong and are undermining the whole thing. They are over there, they don't have a problem with it. Who are you to say that they are wrong? I say you don't know what you are talking about. I saw Chris Rock on Comedy Central. He seemed really proud that he wouldn't fight. I forget what exactly he said but his point was clear - nothing was worth fighting for. Funny, I seem to recall a certain Civil War fought over, among other things, the right for blacks to be free and equal. It's a good thing the northern army wasn't full of Chris Rocks. Let's not forget all the others who have fought for Chris Rock's right to get up on stage and get rich in the first place. Certain communist regimes would have just taken his money but others stood toe to toe and stared Ivan down. Gee, Chris, I don't think there was a lot of rich stand ups in Russia but maybe I'm mistaken. Well, Chris, here's a little ditty from somebody, just for you -

War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decaying and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a more miserable creature, and has no chance of being free unless made or kept so by the exertions of better men than himself. - John Stuart Mill

7Mar05:

Bling, today is yet another oped brought to you by acoholism. Way back in the 80s, before most of you internet weiners were even born, there was a movie industry. They made what we call 'movies'. Movies are what you call videos, all put together in a long video. These movies were generally used by movie theaters to generate money by making movie watchers buy such items as popcorn and soda that were more ice than soda because frozen water is cheaper than syrup. They also had video games that you could play while waiting for the movie to start, or indeed, as I once did, play because the movie sucked. This genererated more reviniew for the theater owner and possible raises for the staff (if they can hold their breath long enough).

The result was that movies made money in theaters. These days theaters are really hoping for smash hits because movies aren't doing too well in theaters. Your average Joe (me) is willing to wait for the DVD or tape to watch at home where popcorn costs .05, rather than $3 at your local theater. Why? We need to save up for gas. Yes, motion lotion, petrol. Indeed, gas is no longer a mere cost but is a legitimate household expense, like water, garbage and porn (and by 'porn' I mean cable TV). The goal these days, by companies that provide minor convienencies such as toilet paper, now see themselves as a major player in our daily lives. You can't just run down and grab some 'TP'. No, you have to play the consumer game. You are not allowed to just grab some TP without being 'marketed' to. 'Please don't squeeze Charmin".

In the old days, there was a balance. For every person who bought Charmin there was a person who bought...well, we buy Charmin. I don't remember the other playas.

My point is, I just watched (a pirate version of) 'The Replacements'. This was a good flick but there is another flick out there called 'Major League' which sucks ass. Why? Because it's a poorly written piece of crap. The Replacements is a poorly edited peice of crap. So it balances out I suppose but Replacements has the benefit of being somewhat entertaining whereas Major League is mundain and boring.

So um, watch the Replacements. It's better.

NOV 22

Hola, (I type spanish when I've been drinking) today's topic is unknown right now. I'm listneing to Mouth and McNeal - How Do You Do? Turns out that I have been drinking too! Anyway, (lest this become a blog) I have a topic.

I've been driving since 1974 or something like that. I hate it but there are no flying cars as yet. Nevertheless, driving has changed. Back then, driving was an experience, best shared with your fellow drivers. You'd stop at a red light, as we all must because, hey, it's the law, and you'd look around a bit. Airconditioning wasn't all that common in cars and even if you had it, everybody knew that it wasted gas and what with gas costing 50 per gallon in 'gas shortage' prices, it'd cost a fortune to run the A/C if it was less than 112deg and raining. Invariably this lead to eye contact with the other driver in the next lane when say, stopped at a red light. You'd then nod meaning, hey, This driving thing is cool or Red lights stink (everybody was polite back then, they didn't say 'suck' unless they were comparing slurpee flavors) or Hi, I'm not a serial killer. Driving, despite all it's problems with dirt roads, wagons slowing you down, dead horses on the side of the road, not enough watering holes and highway robbers...oh wait, that's not really the way the 70s were, kids. Get off the internet super highway.

Anyway, driving back then was more personal. It was an experience shared with your fellow motorists. One would make the occasional eye contact with your fellow drivers, you might even wave! You could at least look a guy in the eye and try to determine if this guy was an evil bastard on his way to his next killing or just some slob on his way back to his miserable homelife. You could also vent a little by making facial statements yourself and the guy next to you would understand and nod. It's called human interaction (at least by me). Turns out that you need to vent a little. Not by killing your neighbors or giving a bunch of money to a schrink so he can afford new pencils to doodle while you vent your spleen. No, you need to understand right away that you are not the only one in the same fix. Be it stopped at a red light when you're in a hurry or that you're not wearing any pants. Let it out, I mean tell somebody. Chances are if they are hanging around with losers like you they probably know more losers in the same boat and ya'll can chat it up or talk it out or whatever they say these days. Hell, I care so feel free to email my boss and tell him all about it.

Wait, back to driving - nowadays, you never see the face of the driver next to you. Despite the white stripe showing you right where to stop, drivers always roll past it when faced with the inevitable and scary face to face contact when two cars of similar length are stopped next to each other at a red. No they will invariably roll just a little past your car so they can be in the lead because being in the lead while stopped at a red light means you will get to your destination weeks sooner than somebody who is not even going to where you are heading. Yeah, it's vital that you be just a little bit farther ahead of everybody else.

Now see where this puts the potential serial killer? Well, behind you. If you've ever watched one of those splatter flicks, which thankfully, they don't make a lot of any more, you'd know that behind you is not where one wants a serial killer to be. At least, I don't. The competitive nature of todays society dictates that we must always be ahead of everybody. Or else somebody might end up with more stuff than us, or the warmer slice of cold pizza or getting to sit at the next red light longer, or something like that. I don't know.

What I do know is when I see a car stopped at a red light, I usually stop door to door with them. Oh yeah, I can actually look over and see their face!!!! There are some ugly people out there. None so ugly as me but I keep looking and hey, I'm not a serial killer, ya'll.

29 Aug

I work nights. So what you ask. Well, just this - working nights makes you work on a different schedule than most of the world. You probably go to work when I'm going to bed. Your lunch time is way into my REM sleep.

I recently refinanced my house. Guess what time they wanted me to go sign the papers. You got it, noon. To me that's like 2am. Not the best time to be out. It's also hard to run around in the sunlight. Sunglasses don't help a lot. Idiot drivers don't help either. It's the middle of the night for me. I can't be dealing with your lane changes just because you're bored with the other lane. Not to mention it's hard even to sign your name when you're half asleep, let alone sign it about 50 times. Forget reading anything.

Your lawn does not need mowed every three days. There's nothing I love more than listening to a mower roaring by the window every couple of minutes while I'm trying to dose off.

That garbage about keeping your air conditioner set on 76 degrees to save money. Guess what, it gets really hot in the afternoon and I feel every one of those 76 degrees. Fans don't help much. Beer does though. Oh they say 'You don't get quality sleep when you drink before bed blah blah'. Well, I'd rather have eight hours of alcohol induced non-quality sleep than two hours of supposedly quality sleep. The upshot of this is that if I want to be comfortable in the afternoon I have to keep the whole house cooler than 76 which in turn, raises my electric bill. Sure it would be nice to sleep at night and have it hotter in the daytime but remember - I work nights.

I laugh at those sleeping pill commercials. 'Do you have trouble falling asleep? Take our drugs'...or work nights for a while. Oh you'll wish you could sleep at night again. A few months of trying to sleep with telemarketers calling and mowers making lawns beautiful and the sun beating down on the wall of your bedroom will make you sleep like a baby at night.

I like being the first one at the store to buy beer at 7:01 when they unlock the cooler. Oh yeah, I stand in line with everybody else. Me with my 18-pack of cold beer and they with their coffee and donuts. I get looks, I look back. I sometimes put the trash on the curb then pull a beer out of my pocket and drink deep. Taking out the trash is hard work. I watch everybody pulling out of their driveways, heading off to work. Me in my shorts and t-shirt, beer in hand. They in their cars, trying to finish up their make up or coffee or breakfast or all three.

I actually like working nights now that I think about it. So next time you see some guy standing in his yard at 8am, swilling down beer, lawn desperatly in need of mowing but the trash all out on the curb, don't judge him to be an alchoholic or a no job having loser. Envy him, maybe he just works nights like me.

29May:

Hola, so about those 'gay marriages', nope, I can't go along with it (surprise). So a couple of states, namely San Franifornia and The people's Republic of Massachusetts think it's just peachy to let two gay dudes get hitched, with all the bennies attached to such a sacred union. Once upon a time there was a judge who had a copy of the ten commandments hanging in his courtroom. This offended somebody at some point, maybe several somebodys. At any rate, this judge was made to take down his ten commandments because somebody got offended. When I was a kid in school, each and everyday we had a daily prayer over the school-wide intercom. Somebody got offended, kids don't do that anymore. One, or a few people, got offended at some point about something and got it changed.

OK, gay marriage offends me. The sight of two guys walking down the street, holding hands offends me, so much more so if they are wearing wedding rings like they are a real married couple. A real married couple could procreate. Gay couples can't. In theory, they would die out. They haven't, sorry Darwin. Indeed, gay folks are more prevalent than ever. Why, they are on primetime TV these days. A veritable utopia of gayfillia. And yes, some straight couples can't either but that is due to a defect in one or both of the individuals, not an incompatibility issue?

Once upon a time, not too long ago, the mantra was 'What we do in the privacy of our bedrooms is our own business'. Yes, yes it is. Once you drag in out into our streets then it's our business. You have dragged it onto the streets and I will tell you that gay marriages are wrong.

14 May:

Ok, this has gotten ridiculous. Microsoft vs. Lindows - this fight has been going on for some time. First of all, Microsoft has been convicted, in court, of monopolistic practices. They've paid a small (to them) fine and been set loose upon the world again. For those not sitting in the stands, there was a company called 'Lindows'. This company sold a Windows like application called Lindows. It worked about like Windows95, I'd say, having used both. The difference is that Lindows is based on Linux, a free operating system, which just scalds Gate's et al. nuts. I've used it, I like it though it is a pain to get everything working. It's about the closest thing MS has to competition (which the courts have ruled, MS must not try to stifle).

MS took Lindows to court, claiming to own the word windows. They won so Lindows changed the name to Lin__s, called Lindash. Now that's funny. Then MS sued again claiming that Lin__s sounded like Windows thus causing massive confusion and sowing insurrection amongst users who MS feels can't tell Lin__s from Windows. Finally, Lin__s threw in the towel and changed the name to Linspire. Ok, MS should have declared victory at this point if they really thought they owned the word windows. But no...

"MS drags Linspire back to court" proclaims el Reg today (ok, a couple days ago. I'm behind in everything these days.). It seems that MS now wants 100,000EU/day for Linspire having the word Lindows on their site. Yes, theis was a Holland court. Lindows Lindows Lindows Lindows (the check's in the mail).

It's clear to me that MS is trying to drive Lindows out of business and that is monopolistic practice in anybody's book. This must stop. We need MS to have competition. Hell, they need competition. Competition drives innovation. Competition drives prices down. Competition is why airlines can't raise the price of a coast to coast airfare $20 despite rising fuel prices. (Trust me, you do not really benefit from saving that $20 either but that's another story). But MS can charge $200 for an operating system for your PC. You do know that you pay for the Windows license when you buy a computer with it already loaded, right? Oh yes, and you pay almost retail too. Nice game if you can sit at the table. MS doesn't allow anybody else to sit at it's table though. It has no real competition.

Now I'm no raving Linux fanboy. Frankly, it's more trouble than it's worth just to feel special. I'm running WinXP and I like it. This is being typed up on Notepad. I use OutlookExpress for mail and InternetExplorer for a browser because they just work. As far as browsers, there are lots so get another one if you like. I use somthing else to check my pages for compliance bcause IE doesn't but that's neither here nor there. My Flightsim page shows that I am a fan of MS Flightsim, I use a lot of MS stuff. I'm simply calling foul on what I see as unfair harassment of a viable competitor to MS and it Windows desktop OS. I see it as monopolistic and it's not right.

Now I need chuck this up in OE so I can run this through the fine spell checker in Outlook Express. I wonder if there is a stand alone Linux spell checker?

6May04

Oh look, I'm updating again. Today I'd like to give a shout-out to all the 'woowoos' out there. Shut up, you sound like idiots. As you may know if you read the front page, I have started reading the Bad Astronomy forum. There is a class of people who stop by on a much more regular basis than I would have imagined. They are collectively referred to as 'WooWoos'. These are folks that believe in a variety of things such as: UFOs, Bermuda Triangle, and various conspiracies. In fact, to some woowoos, conspiracies are everywhere, all the time. For instance, did you know that the September 11th WTC attacks were faked or orchestrated by the government to get public approval for attacking the oil rich middle east for oil? They don't seem to understand that they are accusing the president and the government of assasinating their own people thus making our elected officials murderers and traitors. They say the same thing about Pearl Harbor. The Jewish holocaust in WWII, some say it never happened. The Kennedy assasination, that one gets lots of attention. There are tons of theories out there. Not all woowoos believe all theories. That doesn't mean they aren't woowoos however.

The woowoos I'm on today are the space woowoos. These are people who say things like man never went to the moon or there was/is a thriving civilization on Mars. These people look for something, anything that they can (I hate to use the word) spin to bolster their case. They will even ignore new evidence that disproves old evidence like the 'Face on Mars'. The one on the left was taken by Viking 1976. The image on the right was taken in 2000.

Woowoos completely ignore the new image in favor of the 30 year old one. Alternatively, they'll say that NASA altered the newer image to make it look like a hill.

Fortunately, they usually want you to buy something and that makes them seem more up front about the whole thing. We have seen this time and time again and we know what they are about once they make that sales pitch. They are sly ones though and they get lots of air time on places like Coast to Coast radio. Getting air time seems to make them seem more credible somehow and that is where the problem comes in.

As much as I hate to say it, they have made some headway/done some damage. There are probably millions of people who now believe that it is at least possible that the manned landings on the moon were faked in a big studio in Nevada. To me, this was man's greatest achievement and I'm waiting for an encore. For the woowoos, it's just one more government lie. It's sad that they can't sit and wonder about what it must have been like to drive around on the moon or to be the first man to walk on it. What sad lives they must lead. On the plus side, I don't think the big hitters really do believe it. Sadly there is no money to be made in saying 'Yes, of course man landed on the moon' or 'Civilization? What civilization, there was no steenking civilization on Mars'. No, they have to toe the woowoo party line if they want to be booked for that next lecture tour or sell that next book. Ironically, some even claim that those of us who hang at the BA board are paid NASA disinformationists, out to keep the public misinformed. I got my tax refund check but other than that, nothing so far.

The sad thing is that these guys will say anything, anything to keep the cash cow alive. They accuse NASA of having a hit squad to kill off rats, rats like Virgil 'Gus' Grissom who was supposedly 'tired of the lies and was going to 'blow the whistle'. Christie McAuliffe, who NASA was affraid was going to rat them out by telling everybody that you can see stars from space, thus the moon surface pictures which show no stars, must be fake, thus the moon landings must be fake. So NASA blew up Challenger. Yeah, it's amazing what some of these guys will say or who they will hurt just to make a buck.

Just say no to woowoos.

Jan13, 2004

Hello, and...well, hello. Today's topic, I guess, is about hackers. Not the real hackers, those smart guys who pretty much invented the concept of the personal computer. Not the guys who I owe a debt of gratitude for creating a way for me to spend so much of my time or a big 'way to go, dummies' for creating a way for me to waste so much of my time . I can't decide which. Not the guys who invented the first computer video game Spacewar. (that tennis game not withstanding). Those guys are refered to these days as Developers! Developers! Developers! Developers!....ahem sorry, uh they are called developers.

No, I'm talking about those little basement dwelling, pimply faced bastards that make and share viruses with all of us. Perhaps better refered to as 'Crackers'. Alas that name is also taken. Hackers it shall then, for our purposes at least.

It seems to me that if these little jerks didn't exist we would all be a lot more happy with our PCs. You know, we are supposed to spend around a half an hour every week just updating our virus files, just to keep the crap these little degererates make, from infecting our computers. And this is all supposed to be 'To show Microsoft how vulnarable their operating system is' they say. If it was up to them, we'd have to waste even more time patching to keep these little jackasses out. For myself, I have better things to do like look at por...uh, popup-ads, pop-up ads and buying stuff, lots of stuff to keep the enonomy going, old chap. If it wasn't for these little idiots, microsoft could spend more time on making better stuff rather than looking for and plugging holes in their operating system. Sometimes these fixes even break something that was working just fine. Unlike a lot of people on the net, I don't blame MS for viruses. All they are is a victim just like us. The same as if somebody breaks into your house and steals something. Anybody can come along and say 'Oh, you should have had bars on your windows'. Well, if the burglar hadn't broken in where he wasn't supposed to be in the first place, I wouldn't need bars on my windows, would I? I have a right to expect my house and property to be secure without living in Fort Knox. Same with my computer. They have no right to access my computer just because they can. I wouldn't blame my home builder for a burglary and I don't blame MS for viruses or any other internet mayhem.

So who benefits? Not the idiots themselves. No, all they get is accolades from their peers at best and jail time at worst. The evil MS? No, all they get is more work. Oh they will pass the cost on to you and me but they don't really benefit. You do however get to pay for it anyway. No, the only ones who benefit are.....the anti-virus companies!! Astounding logic, no? The AV companies are the only ones who profit from something like sobig. Hey, they've never caught the maker of that one, have they? Sure they catch the occasional variant writter but never the big virus makers. Even the ones they do catch are always in some foriegn country or some little town that nobody really lives in anyway so nobody will know these supposed 'virus authors'.

Linux users, and I have used linux too, like to wave their OS as more secure. I think they know the reason for that and security through obscurity is no security at all. They just won't admit it in their cause to further their OS. Hell, I'm no MS lover. The sad fact is that windows is the dominent OS and that's who software makers are making for. I think they should port to Linux too but they don't and that's probably due to an agreement with MS for windows use. I never said MS wasn't evil, just that I don't think they are responsible for every break-in of their OS. My 2.

Nov 25, 2003

Well, here I am. Drunk, tired and pissed off so it must be time for another oped.

Today I guess it's about the failure of human interaction. to wit: Stoplights.Yes, those insidious time wasters where you are but a helpless user sitting, waiting for some electronic gizmo to cause your eyes to percieve the correct color associated with stepping on the long, vertical pedal to make your riding machine go.

Most of them (traffic lights) these days are made to work by a magnetic sensor which detects a carlike mass sitting upon it. It then triggers the timer and makes the magic box interrupt the normal flow of traffic, giving a Go (green) light to the cross traffic. But (you knew there was a but, otherwise you wouldn't be here) that is only a theory. The truth is that when the system breaks down the light sticks. You get to sit there until someone gets up the guts to run the light. I've been caught so many times that I don't usually wait too long. Broke dick gear pisses me off.

Anyway, once the city get's enough complaints they come out and check out the light. Usually they find that the system is shot, the wiring is inadequate or the timing is just wrong. So they mess with it for a few days until they give up and decide the whole thing needs replaced.

Well, things don't get replaced of course. That would cut into the city roads people's pocket money that the folks use for 'inspectng the roads'. So since the sensors don't work anymore and the light has no way of knowing when a car is sitting there waiting for the light to change, it's better and cheaper to just set the thing to timer and let it run. So as a result, when I'm coming home from work at 0240hrs I get to stop at a red light even though I'm on a major street and it is a minor crossroad. Oh and they left it set for lunch rush apparantly because the light changes to red about every 20 seconds even though there is no cross traffic at all. Suffice to say this light pisses me off. I see it, I see it's green. Will it stay green or will it switch to red for no reason? Who the hell knows? Not me, hell it's the middle o fthe night. Why shoud I expect theis light to stay green if there is no cross traffic? No reason. I'm just a driver, what the hell do I mean in the scheme of things? Still I must stop, everynight even though there are no cars coming. Tis the chapper for me but I guess I'm saving the city money.

Who said I needed a point? Well, I guess I at red lights when ther's no cross traffic or something.

20Jul: Well it looks like my good buddies at RIAA are really insane now. They are so desperate to prove how evil p2p is that they have taken to filing civil suits against users. It's insane. A while back they won a case against Verizon to get the personal information of one of Verizon's subscribers. They stated that they were 'looking forward to informing this user that he was breaking the law.' Apparantly they weren't interested in informing anybody of anything. What they wanted was money. Now they seem to think they are entitled to be paid for doing nothing but fileing a subpoena at the court clerks' office. Oh and they are seking anywhere from $750 to $15,000 per song shared. Where these numbers come from I have no idea but suffice to say that this would add up really fast.

RIAA also recently won a case against 4 college students who were running a hub for fellow students. RIAA asked for $150,000 per song. Like I said, psychotic. RIAA also doesn't have a problem with lying if it suits them. In one story they claimed that police had raided a pirating outfit with 421 CD burners when there were actually 156. Their answer to that was 'There were only 156 actual burners, but some run at very high speeds: some as high as 40x. This is well above the average speed.' At least I got a good laugh but really should these idiots be suing anybody if they are going to resort to lies and exagerations. They are messing with peoples' lives here.

Ok so what RIAA wants to do is this: They want to cruise various peer to peer networks and check everybody's shared files looking for songs released by record company's that are in their trade group. They will then contact the ISPs of those sharing those songs. Once they obtain their names and addresses they then file subpoenas at the court clecks office in Washington D.C. That basically means one of their lawyers walks in with a name and a clerk writes up the summons. That's all it takes to get one. Then it will be up to the hapless p2p user to prove that they are innocent. Nice eh? The only winners are RIAA and their lawyers. The courts will be jammed, The clerks office has already had to shuffle staff to keep up with this. Thousands of otherwise upstanding citizens will find themselves with a criminal record and deeply in debt to RIAA. (The fines for the college students ran from $12,000 to $17,500.)

There is so much to this that I can't fit it all in, such as a senator in the RIAA's pocket thinks it's ok to destroy a sharers computer and that they are contemplating prison time for sharers. The thing is there is so little press coverage of this attack on our freedom. I finally found an article in the business section in yesterday's paper. By the time the general public becomes aware it will be too late. I encourage everybody to be informed on this. We are talking mass lawsuits brought against anyone RIAA picks out. Maybe you, your friends, your neighbors. Have a look at el Reg, my favorite or anywhere else you want but find out what you can about this. You can even go to the RIAA site itself. They do have trouble staying online for some reason though.

What I would like to see is all p2p file sharing shut down for a year or two. Then when RIAA finds out they are still not making what they think they should be we can see what they try to blame next for losing 'more than 300 million dollars a year domestically'. You know they won't be at fault.

And by the way, I bought another Louis Armstrong CD that did have the right version of What a Wonderful World on it. Put that in your pipe and smoke it, RIAA. Unfortunately that's about the only good song on it but oh well. Somehow I don't think Louis would approve of what RIAA is doing.

1Apr:

Let me start off by saying that Saddam sucks camels. Now that I got that out of the way we can get started.

Most of the media is doing a pretty good job with war coverage. That one ex-CNN/NBC dude, Peter 'puffer' Arnett joins Saddam as a camel crotch muncher however. Get on the winning side, asshat. BTW, Arnett has already been hired by the Daily Mirror in London. You, at the Mirror, must be so proud of him. I bet he came cheap. You too, are asshats. Enjoy your new status. Hell, move to London, Arnett, you came from New Zealand any way.

BTW, yeah I linked FoxNews in the last oped and I know they are biased but they're biased to my side so I like them. We have troops in the field, the time to support them is now. I just can't understand how any asshole can live in this country and yet not support the government and the troops that defend their right to be an asshole. You hypocritical bastards, the time for debate is over. Indecicivness is what the enemy thrives on. They see divided support and think if they just hold out long enough our will will crumble and they will win, ala Vietnam. I'd like to point out that that war took 10 years! Do you want to wait 10 more years, feeding your sons/daughters into the meat grinder or do you want to end this thing quickly by showing them that there's no way they can win; by showing that we are determined to oust the Saddam regime and be rid of one more snake?

Would you stupid asses have had us ignore Germany after Japan attacked us? Just go after Japan and leave Hitler alone because Germany didn't attack us directly? Or would you idiots waste time negotiating? Maybe give Japan the west coast so they will not attack us any more? (maybe a good idea) Or would you get your mean on and go kick some ass where ever an ass needed kicked? You stupid pussies would probably just negotiate the whole country away as long as you weren't threatened. You 'peace above all' assholes really piss me off. You think the whole world is as commited to peace as you are and the US is the only ones still holding guns and we should just throw down our arms. Yeah, maybe we should disarm the police first then all the criminals will get rid of their guns too and then no cops will get killed and then peace will break out and we can all sit around and smoke dope all day and maybe aliens will come down to be our slaves and serve us. Yeah, peace is the way, peace at all costs as long as you don't get harmed. Pathetic...

I don't have all the answers but you peacebillies don't have any answers. Go lay in a street and shut the hell up.

God save us from the spoiled children of '70s for they now think they have all the answers that we have been seeking, amen.

Hmm, I just had another thought (ouch). If you have kids of draft age and are against the war for that reason I absolve thee from my wrath. For my part, my boys are a few years from draft age so I'd like to see this wrapped up soon. Hey, I never said I was perfect or objective. Imagine being a parent in 1964 and having a son 9 years old with Vietnam going on every night on the news like it does now. Then watching that son grow up for 10 years and then having him get sent off to that same war that was going on when he was 9. I missed such a fate by a couple of years. I enlisted when I was 19 (there was no draft by then) and I picked my MOS 95B (MP) and opted for Germany. You could pick your MOS or your location. I wonder how many guys said 'I'll do whatever, I just want to be near *your hometown here*'? Anyway, I got Germany because at that time Germany was wide open. A great deal, but I was 19 and defending the nation from the Red Menice. We were ready too. We trained for the day that Russia would invade. We or at least me, wanted Russia to invade (stupid kids). They never came. That doesn't mean we were'nt willing to do our part and in fact we knew that all we could do was buy time for the follow on forces to arrive. We expected one month, that was our mission, to buy the free world one month. Not so fags could spend that month arguing about weather we should do something or not but one month to get forces in place to defend the free world. Never the less we trained, we had alerts, we went to the field, we went on 'Reforger'. Hell, we had a great time but none of it was real.

Iraq is real and I can empathize. Hell yes, I support my troops if for no other reason than that could have been me if I was youger. I know something of what it is like to be in battle (simulated). These guys and gals are the same as I was those years ago so I can say that these are the best and brightest of our youth and may God bless them all. If you don't support them or you call them 'invaders, pirates, mercenaries', or you wish them a "a million Mogadishus" (you son of a bitch), eat it. They have my support and I'll kick your ass if you are an American citizen or some coattail riding freeloader and advocate fighting or killing them. Peter Arnett, you suck, traitor. De Genova, you are worse than Arnett so use your pathetic imagination as to how I feel about you, you bastard. I'd love to kick you in the nuts if you had any. Damn, there goes my job with CNN.

24 Mar:

My two bits on the war (yes, we have a war now) with Iraq. I have been watching Fox News from day one. At first I was born again hard. Then I started getting feelings of trepidation as I watched the 3rd ID (my old Division btw) charging across the desert seemingly unprotected. I might even say I was against the war for a few hours. But as things progressed and some of our people were captured, some were killed and when I heard what had happened and how some of these troops had been killed and how some had been treated after being captured, I was reminded of just why our troops are there. The Saddam regime is an evil entidy. They only understand violence. Saddam has been strutting around for the last 12 years boasting about facing down the evil USA. I'm fine with that, the US stands on it's actions not on rhetoric. But after a time Saddam seems to have forgotten that it was the coalition backing out that saved his ass. He didn't win at all and was a few days away from being hauled before a UN tribunal. But we backed off and look at the mess that has brought.
At any rate, the war is afoot, the President will not, and I feel should not, pull the troops out at this point. What this oped is about is the self important 'anti-war protesters'.

Back in the olden days, when the Vietnam War was going on we had protesters. Mostly guys facing the draft and they seized on any excuse to get the war to end before their number came up. These days there are protesters all over the world. Most of whom do not face being drafted and thrown into a meat grinder. This, one might interpret as more sincere. I don't, I see them as children throwing fits because their government won't do what they want. Some of these pathetic losers are in Hollywood not suprisingly. This includes one Michael Moore, a particularly vile individual who used the platform at the academy awards to spout some slop about the rather old election and against the war. (There is a clip showing it there, under video.) He's a prick. But really, hasn't the time for protesting this war passed. The pathetic protestors have lost, the war is afoot. Get over it, Gore lost and Saddam is going down. This is a good thing, so shut up and support the troops and the President. There are people in this world who would not do anything even if they had a gun stuck in their own stupid faces.

By the way Michael Moore, if you were in Baghdad you would be in prison or dead in the desert by now if you said something like that about Saddam, don't forget that. And the election was 3 years ago. Don't you think you should get over it? If he and his ilk had their way we'd still be counting ballots. Hell, I bet Al Gore is glad he lost. He's at Apple now and I think he'd just as soon that you shut up about him. I sure as hell wouldn't want you speaking for me.

I'm amazed at people like Moore who wouldn't have anything if they had to work for a living. They get rich off of our money and only because they live in this great country where we have cash to spend. But when the sons and daughters (how PC of me) of these same people who have made them rich get sent off to defend the way of life that has made them rich, all they can do is spout the kind of garbage that Michael Moore did. Here's a clue, look at an aerial photo of Baghdad. There are no marinas, no yachts. How much money do you think you'd have over there?

Saddam and his ilk only understand violence. He tossed the UN out and only let them back in after we started beating the war drums. However, his intensions were to lead the inspectors around on a leash and play hide and seek with them. The time for that has passed. How long would you have us wait Mr. Moore? Forever I guess if your still fretting over an election that was held in 2000. I think your the one living in a fantasy. Shame on you, Mr. Moore. Shame on you.

P.S. It seems the links I used in the previous oped that led to Saddams site are down now. I wonder what could be wrong?

6 Mar 03:

Time for me to weigh in on the war with Iraq. First let me say, there is no 'War with Iraq'. The media keeps slinging the word 'WAR' so everybody will get up in arms and cause us to lose before it's even started. Here's a clue, liberal, touchy, feely is what got us in this mess so just report the news and quit forcing your wimpy ass agenda on us. Not being a wimp is what got us to 1992. Being the worlds bitch after that is what brought us 11Sept2001. Thanks, Mr. Clinton.

Now, if Saddam were to quit screwing around and let the UN inspectors look where they want to look and prove that Iraq has no weapons on mass destruction (as everybody has taken to calling them) and/or surrendered any such weapons I think it would end there. He would remain in power and we would get on with our business. Note it's the UN that's doing inspections, not US so it's not like the US is pushing poor little Iraq around. (Yeah, yeah, 'the US runs the UN wahh wahhh'. Save it.) But Saddam is acting like a kid who got caught stealing. He's hemming and hawing and delaying the inevitable. We will find out if he's hiding atomic or bio weapons, one way or another. Get used to the idea. We don't like having a gun pointed at our or our allies head.

Alot of the world, or maybe just the noisy part, seems to think we should just walk away and leave Saddam and Iraq alone to do whatever it is they want to do. They seem to want the good times to keep going. 'Global Protest against the war', how nice. Let's just put our head in the sand and ignore an obvious threat. If you had a rattlesnake loose in your house would you just ignore it since it was just sleeping in a corner. Would you go on and just hope nobody got bitten or would you hunt it down? We choose not to ignore the threat of madman Saddam. Though he calls himself 'President' he is not an elected official, his government is not a body of leaders chosen by the people with the peoples interests in mind. He is a dictator and his cabinet is a bunch of his henchmen, all intent on staying in power, letting the good times keep on rolling. He still thinks he won in Desert Storm.

We ignored the taliban and Al-Queda. World and popular opinion would not allow us to meddle in thier affairs so we didn't and we got punished for turning our back on that situation. Now we are being told to do the same thing again. Fool us once, shame on you - fool us twice, shame on us. We will not be caught again. If that ruffles feathers so be it.

Once upon a time there was a loudmouth in Lybia making threats. We dealt with him by beating him to the draw. When's the last time you heard of Qudaffi? That action was met with disapproval but I think we can count it as a success. He learned that he would be held accountable. Saddam needs to learn the same lesson. He refuses to learn from history.

We will not allow super weapons in the hands of lunatics. We will not be threatened by lunatics and we will not, without retribution, be attacked by lunatics. If that's a problem too bad. Is everybody supposed to just hope the 'Butcher of Bagdad' doesn't get mad and sling some bio weapon at Isreal or even Iran or Saudi Arabia. Are we supposed to hope he doesn't get mad at us? Are we supposed to just be glad we weren't in the Trade Towers? Are we supposed to rely on being lucky? Um, hell no. We should and will remove those weapons and if that takes an invasion that's what we'll do. We had a chance in 1991 to zip him up but chickened out. Saddam has had 12 years to learn from his mistakes and we have learned from ours. Like it or not, America is cleaning house. Choose a side or get out of the way. It will happen this time.

6 Mar 03:

Time for me to weigh in on the war with Iraq. First let me say, there is no 'War with Iraq'. The media keeps slinging the word 'WAR' so everybody will get up in arms and cause us to lose before it's even started. Here's a clue, liberal, touchy, feely is what got us in this mess so just report the news and quit forcing your wimpy ass agenda on us. Not being a wimp is what got us to 1992. Being the worlds bitch after that is what brought us 11Sept2001. Thanks, Mr. Clinton.

Now, if Saddam were to quit screwing around and let the UN inspectors look where they want to look and prove that Iraq has no weapons on mass destruction (as everybody has taken to calling them) and/or surrendered any such weapons I think it would end there. He would remain in power and we would get on with our business. Note it's the UN that's doing inspections, not US so it's not like the US is pushing poor little Iraq around. (Yeah, yeah, 'the US runs the UN wahh wahhh'. Save it.) But Saddam is acting like a kid who got caught stealing. He's hemming and hawing and delaying the inevitable. We will find out if he's hiding atomic or bio weapons, one way or another. Get used to the idea. We don't like having a gun pointed at our or our allies head.

Alot of the world, or maybe just the noisy part, seems to think we should just walk away and leave Saddam and Iraq alone to do whatever it is they want to do. They seem to want the good times to keep going. 'Global Protest against the war', how nice. Let's just put our head in the sand and ignore an obvious threat. If you had a rattlesnake loose in your house would you just ignore it since it was just sleeping in a corner. Would you go on and just hope nobody got bitten or would you hunt it down? We choose not to ignore the threat of madman Saddam. Though he calls himself 'President' he is not an elected official, his government is not a body of leaders chosen by the people with the peoples interests in mind. He is a dictator and his cabinet is a bunch of his henchmen, all intent on staying in power, letting the good times keep on rolling. He still thinks he won in Desert Storm.

We ignored the taliban and Al-Queda. World and popular opinion would not allow us to meddle in thier affairs so we didn't and we got punished for turning our back on that situation. Now we are being told to do the same thing again. Fool us once, shame on you - fool us twice, shame on us. We will not be caught again. If that ruffles feathers so be it.

Once upon a time there was a loudmouth in Lybia making threats. We dealt with him by beating him to the draw. When's the last time you heard of Qudaffi? That action was met with disapproval but I think we can count it as a success. He learned that he would be held accountable. Saddam needs to learn the same lesson. He refuses to learn from history.

We will not allow super weapons in the hands of lunatics. We will not be threatened by lunatics and we will not, without retribution, be attacked by lunatics. If that's a problem too bad. Is everybody supposed to just hope the 'Butcher of Bagdad' doesn't get mad and sling some bio weapon at Isreal or even Iran or Saudi Arabia. Are we supposed to hope he doesn't get mad at us? Are we supposed to just be glad we weren't in the Trade Towers? Are we supposed to rely on being lucky? Um, hell no. We should and will remove those weapons and if that takes an invasion that's what we'll do. We had a chance in 1991 to zip him up but chickened out. Saddam has had 12 years to learn from his mistakes and we have learned from ours. Like it or not, America is cleaning house. Choose a side or get out of the way. It will happen this time.

30Sep03: Well, a new day and a new op-ed. Today's target is RIAA (the Recording Industry Association of America). For those who have never heard of RIAA, this is an alliance of record companies and movie producers. Self appointed policers of the recording industry. The folks who got napster shut down. The folks who want to get power to snoop your computer looking for things they think are pirated. If they find anything, it will be disabled and you may be arrested. They also have gotten microsoft's help on this. In fact, I think MS has set the whole climate where something like RIAA can actually flourish.
Ok, once upon a time there was a thing called 'Napster'. A P2P setup where users could swap songs. Granted , there was some abuse going on. People could and would download entire new albums and have to pay nothing. OK, that was a bad thing. Maybe some would buy the CD at some point. I don't know. I first hooked up with napster when I bought a CD to get one song (Louis Armstrong: What a Wonderful World). However the song was a different version of the one I was after. Also not labeled as a 'pick up' version, which it was and not what I thought I was paying for. So I went to napster and glomed the version I wanted. Viola, no muss, no fuss. Well, then I thought why not grab up some stuff from albums I have so I don't have to wear out my vinyl? So I started doing that. Then it I decided to grab up some tunes I like on the radio so I can hear them whenever I want instead of being at the mercy of the program director. After all, what's the difference if I tape them off the radio or grab them from the net? Nothing I say.
The RIAA is trying to kill off all mp3's and file swapping. They want you to go out and pay $20 or so for a whole CD when you really only want one tune. They don't have a problem with that. I do. In the old vinyl days, I would go out and pay $8 for a record just to get one song. (Ever hear of Toronto: Get it on Credit? I have that album.) There were usually some other songs that didn't get played on the radio but were still good. However, today, I don't have the inclination to go buy entire albums just for one song I like from the radio and I sure don't have the time to sit there waiting for the station to play the song I want so I can tape it. I just pop on to a P2P and grab it. Usually I don't really even listen to it much after that but I know I have it if I want it. No harm, no foul I say. RIAA disagrees. As far as they're concerned, I should go out and buy the CD or tape just to have that one song available. Do they have a problem with me taping it from a radio station? Probably, but they aren't trying to invade my privacy to stop taping off of radio. And they do get royalties from radio stations for whatever songs they play. Granted, they don't get anything if I download it but they don't get anything if I tape it either. Same thing with movies. Movies are viewable as taped off of cable. Not reproduceable, but viewable. Same with songs from the radio. And here's what RIAA's makes their case on- quality.
They say that there is no degradation in quality on a digital copy, therefore they should be paid. I say they're lying and they know it. The copy you download is still a copy. It may or may not be good. One has to try it out to see. It's still not an original. It get's compressed, uncompressed, recompressed and then uncompressed everytime it's played. They get copied at different bit rates. It may not even play. One never knows what one is getting. Much the same as taping off of the radio. They also use the argument that a movie can be downloaded in half the time it takes to play it. Well, maybe not much of an argument but they use that as propaganda to buy congressmen and/or senators' votes. It's also bullshit and they know it. Not that it matters to the case at all but it makes it sound more like a scam to whomever they're pitching it to. Politicians can't stand the common man getting one over so RIAA trots out that little gem at pitch time. The fact is I never, ever got hooked up at that speed. The best I have ever gotten is about twice the play time but usually at least 3 times and that is on a very good connection.
And finally, some tips to the fine folks at RIAA. Here's a clue and it's free. Just because you choose to pay some no talent slutty looking teenager or boy band way too much and buy play time on MTV doesn't mean you can expect, nay demand that we buy the albums. If they stink, the consumers will know it and not buy your product. Also, we will only buy so many remakes. If the movie stunk before, chances are it will stink again. Again, we will know it and not buy your products. On the same note, digitally remastering stuff and putting it on DVD is not going to get us out there buying either. That's called 'Polishing the cannonball'. Say Ford wanted to rerelease the pinto, would you run out and buy it because it has a more efficient engine and a never before used color of paint? I don't think so. Stop blaming P2P and everybody for your own inadequesies and get to making something worth selling. If it's good we will come. If it sucks we will know it. We are not the morons you take us for. Dance monkeys, dance. Or find something you're good at like whining, sniveling, blame shifting and bribery.

28 Aug:

I feel the need to vent and now you all must suffer, sorry. Today I'm ranting about...well, why commit to one topic? I have recently abandoned one of the forums that I used to go to several times a day. I left because it is frequented by liberal, over tolerant, touchy feely anti American jerks. Well, that's my opinion anyway. The overall impression I got from them was they believed, and one guy said as much, that we deserved to be attacked by those son's of bitches. That was the last straw, I left before I blew up. Anyway, I was called racist, faciaist and right-wing for saying the middle east is not an advanced society. OK, I called them morons, still what I meant was not an advanced society. I was accused of thinking of them as less than human. I was also accused of believing everything the media says. This for me is the worst insult you can accuse me of. If I heard on the news that it was dark at night I'd check for myself. They are a bunch of self important, primadonas who are too lazy to check the facts for themselves. I never watch the news and if I want to find out about something, I read the paper. They, at least, take the time to check most stories and give more than 10 seconds of information. But we're not here for that.

Back to the subject, some 'foreign nationals' were welcomed into our country as is everyone with proper documentation. They came here with the worst of intent but we welcomed them anyway. We assume that everyone is here because they like our way of life and believe in our system. They lived here among us and enjoyed our way of life and then coldly attacked the very nation that had welcomed them in. There's no need to detail it here but I see nothing 'smart' or 'intelligent' in the plan. If you crash planes into buildings you get headlines. Nothing sophisticated there. You could, at that time, walk through airport security with box knives and carpet cutters. Nothing intelligent there. The stock market and many companies have taken a beating. Does this have anything to do with the attacks? I don't think so. The economy is simply settling after 10 years or so of artificial growth epitimized by the great dot com gold rush. The terrorists certaintly didn't understand our economy enough to plan it's collapse. Even if they did, it failed anyway. Nothing smart about it there. I heard about how bin Landen was an engineer and had planned to the towers to collapse then he himself admitted that he didn't know what would happen but thought the top floors might collapse. Oops, media types missed that one. So hijack planes with knives, crash planes into second most famous buildings in the country, get famous. Not a really brilliant plan at all.
So they hate us. Did they petition the middle eastern nations to stop contact with America and drive us from the middle east? No. Did they compete with us on the global market and try to drive us from the global market? No. Did they refuse to sell us oil and cause us to pay more for fuel? No. They did nothing but grab the headlines in a childish tantrum thrown by one little spoiled rich boy. A spoiled little rich boy who never leads any of these great jihads that he calls for. Yet you always see him with a rifle. What cheap propoganda. But the 'intelligent, sophisticated' middle easterners buy it.
Ok, so what comes out of the middle east? Oil, yeah. Do they make it? No, it's in the ground. They just let us suck it out. Do they make cars? No, rockets? No, radios, TVs, airplanes, computers, ocean liners? Uh, no. They even go to other countries to get a higher education. The only thing they make is hate. Hate against those that do make those things. Things they use everyday and yet they hate us for it. I say again, the middle east is not an advanced society. And you can quote me.

10 Aug 02:

Well, let's see what I come up with today.
Today's topic is one nobody really cares about: Evolution vs Creation.

Pretty mild I know. Anywho, there are basically two theories. One has been around in varying forms for thousands of years and the other has come about in recent years and yet has become wildly popular with the so called intellectuals.
Ok here goes the most famous: Once upon a time the was an all powerful deity. He was lonely and decided he would make a sort of galactic terrarium. He made the heavens and the Earth. He made the creatures that inhabited this place. And it was good and all. Then He decided it needed more so He created Man. This is where I think He went awry. Ungrateful, spoiled mankind then proceeded to screw up everything. Fast forward to today and you can see where this one ends up.

Version 2: Once upon a time there was a particle of preeminent matter. It appeared out of nowhere I suppose. This was a really small particle, hence the name 'particle'. Well, this particle one day did what all preeminent particles do, it exploded and became um, everything. All the planets, the stars, the asteroids, everything came from this particle. Well, that was nice but there was nothing there. Along came meteors and asteroids. These space rocks crashed into the earth (which of course had no name at that time) and oh, guess what, those meteors and asteroids just happened to be carrying some stuff that when combined, made enzymes. (I guess the ingredients couldn't mix while they were all in the preeminent partcle.) These enzymes decided that they didn't like being enzymes and became single celled organisms. (I may have missed a few steps but you get the idea). Naturally, the single cells didn't like being single cells so they decided to subdivide (or combine and form a gang, who knows). Now they were 'multicell organisms'. This too was not good enough so they became floating stuff. Slime really I guess. Ok, this too was not good enough, so they decided to become fish or something. Naturally fish was not good enough so now they decided to crawl up on land and see what was there. They stayed eventually. Yada yada, They became monkeys. Monkeys wanted to not be monkeys so decided to become man. How or why they reached these decisions is not known but the theory holds that they did. Well except for some monkeys decided that they liked being monkeys so stayed monkeys. Of course some 'fish' decided they wanted to be food so became cows, chickens, pigs. Some even wanted to stay fish. We still have single celled life forms and even enzymes too. So why didn't these leftovers evolve? Who knows, they just didn't.
So are we a product of this random happenstance and are just really lucky or is there a grand plan involving some, dare I say it in these P.C. times, God? That's for you to decide. I, your humble webmaster and opionated old geezer would never deem to tell you what to believe. You're on your own.

If you're wondering where the alien theory is, I ask you where did the aliens come from? Now we're back to square one. So there ya go.

01 MAY

Well here I am again. Another oped coming your way. Today's topic starts off being about working women. I don't mean women who fall on hard times and have to work for their (usually abandoned) kids. I'm talking about working women that don't have to work but choose to have a career. Sexist? You bet. Let's get that out of the way now. A long time ago, when I was a kid and up until lately, the vast majority of women were raised to and only wanted to be married to a good man and stay at home and raise some good kids. Don't like the sound of that? Too bad, that's the way it was. Women believed that it was important to stay home and raise good kids. If they found extra time then they found some charity or maybe took in some sewing or something but the main focus was to teach their kids how to act.They also took care of the home, took care of the money and anything involved in running the home. And made it look easy. The old man was to pay for the required supplies and shut up and mow the lawn and say 'Yes, Dear' alot etc. This system had worked for thousands of years. Then the women got a taste of the working world during WW II and for some reason thought it was fun. Apparantly, getting a check with their own name on it was some big deal to them. For the most part, after the war, they went back home and took over the important work of running the home.
Somewhere in the 1980s women got the idea that they should have 'careers'. This was also the era of the 'sensitive man'. Men were supposed to be sensitive and caring wimps. Not the manly dudes that built this great nation, indeed, forged all great nations of the world. No, caring and sensitive. That was supposed to be the man of the 80s. Turns out, that wasn't such a good idea and women wanted the manly man back by the mid 90s. They also wanted the careers. Hmm, the old cake and eat it too syndrome. That doesn't work, sister. Anyway, guess what. Business types, who were the first to be sensitive and tell the wife 'sure dear, you should have a career too', decided that since wives were working too they could charge more for luxuries. Ever bitch about having to pay $15,000 for a run about car? Guess why that is. Yup, the car makers think you are either single or have a wife working and can pay 20 grand for a car. Everything costs more because of this 'extra income' we all supposedly have. So now your extra money from the wife working gets ate up by extra cost. She has to have a car to get to work and so do you. She can't drop you at the bus stop and keep the car. You can't take the car either. You have to buy 2 of these over priced crapmobiles because you need the flexibilty. That's at least $30,000 every 3-5 years, bye bye. Are you really saving anything? I admit that women on the average get paid less than men for similar jobs. That would be reason for me to quit. If I could stay home all day I would. Don't give me that crap about how hard it is to do the home jobs. I know how hard it is which is why it is a full time job and somebody has to be there full time. Now why are women working again? Because they want to. Plain and simple, they think they are supposed to now. 'Housewife' is now a frowned on title. Sure, everybody patronizes and says 'Oh, that's a tough job'. But they think 'Why don't you have a real job, loser?'. Somewhere, raising kids has become a parttime job or a hobby. That's a shame. Women used to take pride in their kids. Now kids seem to be some kind of burden. Forget the movies. Remember 'Hi, Mom'?
But the genie is out of the bottle. If every woman went back to the house, car makers could'nt charge outragious prices for cars. This is an example but everything costs more because of this 'extra money' that we all have now. So, there really is no extra money just big price tags. Thanks, ladies. Let me get that chair for you. Now the economy couldn't take the big price cuts because they'd still have to pay the big wages. Maybe they could...OK now there'd be fewer workers so payroll would go down. They'd have to hire somebody to take their place. That would be men since there are only 2 genders (yes 2). Hmm, unemplyment would disappear. Anybody left would be freeloaders and should starve. Kids would get the attention they deserve and be raised by an adult that cares about them, not just being paid to watch them. Us guys could come home to a clean(ish) house and a warm, willing, well rested (hehe, couldn't resist) wife. I think almost everybody would be happier. Those left over could be handled easier than the masses of divorce and domestic troubles that are prevalant now. Well, that's my plan. Let me get the door for you, maam. Give your kids a hug for me when you get home.


MAR 28 02
(or so) Well, hello. Time for more of my thoughts. Today's op-ed is about that evil invention, the remote control. Specifically, the TV remote. Many years ago when one desired to change the looks of that novelty item, the television (TV), one got off of ones ... sofa to change the channel. There were only a few channels to choose from and most showed the same stuff but at different times. Sure the host might be different but a variety show was a variety show. One day somebody (I don't know or care who) decided he (these days one is supposed to say he/she but let's be real, chicks just kept up the home back then. (Now nobody does and so news anchors whine about 'why are the kids of today not raised in good homes? sob'.) (Take a guess)) could make some money by using radio signals to change the channels on everybody's TV. Thus he built a remote control so he could channel surf between his 2 or 3 local channels, woohoo. Now when Carson had dog acts on, one could press a button and change over to see what Ed Sullivan was up to (maybe some fly-by-night-english-band-named-after-a-bug), rather than getting up off ones'...sofa and change the channel. It now required no effort to just pop over to another station and see what was on. This went on about every 15 minutes for 1 minute because that was the commercial slots that were available (actually I think it was every 1/2 hour but I'm not sure since I was about 10 then. Sponsors would sponsor whole shows ("brought to you by..."). That was cool. Just one type of commercial instead of ads for American cars followed by ads for Jap(panzies) cars. If pall mall cigarettes wanted more time they had to go to a different network. The networks were selling a product, namely entertainment and they understood that people would just turn off the TV if there was nothing on and go visit neighbors or sit on the porch and sip lemonade or make home made ice cream (hand crank, not electric), yum. People still had the ability to entertain themselves (and they had porches). So if there were too many comercials, eg. like today, people would just turn the thing off. Enter cable TV. At first they carried local stations and a few out of town stations. Maybe a few cable only stations. This brought the channel count up to about 10 or so and some crap stations they had to make it look like you were getting alot for your money. Also they had a remote control with the cable box. This was the beginning of the end. Now you could park your...self on the sofa and click away. Clikety click all day long. Oh great, now the housebuilders didn't need to build porches anymore. We have remote controls. Still, we make out. Build your own porch and now you have the best of both. But...it turns out that the 'marketing/salesmen professionals/snake oil salesmen, scumbags et al. eg. TV spammers' also had cable. And where we saw entertainment, they saw opportunity. Opportunity to try to sell us more stuff we don't need. F...ine, now we had 2 minute commercials every 15 minutes. And there are a few cable channels that don't have commercials still. This is the mid 80's. Great times. However, eventually, more and more time was 'available for sale'. If you ever see a slot on TV that is about what will be on next week or later tonight or whatever, that means 'this spot for sale'. After all, nowadays they tell you what's coming on next while the crdits roll on the show you were watching. Think about that when the basta... station owners cut off part of the show you're watching so they can tell you whats coming up next. After all, you must not be able to work a TV guide or you'd have flipped over to another channel by now. Anyway, 3 minutes every 15 (some 44 minutes left of the show, 3 minutes before and after rolling the credits). So add more slots/make more money while still selling the same stuff. Like the same ad 5 times in one hour. OK, so for TV viewers, this means that you can switch channels during commercials. Oh goody. Don't read a book or anything, switch to another mindless channel. Good idea, except, most channels have commercials in the same slots. Have you ever changed to another channel and hit the same commercial? Almost like they planned it? That's because they all run comercials in the same slot. Ever had your favorite prime time show preempted by an infomercial? They sure know the average TV viewer. He will sit there with the remote and flip channels until the flashing lights are most pleasing. Duh, the ad jerks treat you like morons because when you have a remote, you act like morons. "Flunky: Sir, the morons have figured out how to change the channels during commercials. Sir: Just buy more time...Let our message go forth twice every commercial break. Maybe the morons will happen to land on our channel when our commercial is running and give up and watch our stupid ad. If it's flashy enough they will stop to stare at the marvel our ad agency has created like a baby looking at a disco ball. And we owe our ad agency 2 million for this latest ad campaign." Or maybe the viewing public will realize they are paying too high a price for the limited string of remakes and reruns the networks are running and turn off the moron boxes and grab a (commercial free) book. Maybe they will create a website and bore others with their opinions. We will see, but right now the same Ford commercial is on that has aired 4 times during Starsky and Hutch. Gotta switch channels.

OpEd Dec06: Today is my day off from work. I have been on the net all day much as I am every day off and most of my spare time. The fact is I have nothing else I would rather do than play on a computer. OK, I guess I'm supposed to say I'd rather spend time with my kids but the truth is, I'd rather be here than anywhere. My kids are welcome as long as they don't touch the keys. There are so many things to do on a computer if you make the time. But I'm here today to talk about broadband. Why? Because I love broadband. Now they are saying broadband is dying because not enough people want it...Why not? What are you people thinking of? You want drive thru fast food, cell phones, faxes, satellite TV, blow dryers, tv dinners, microwaves, fast cars, faster cars and putt putt golf? Anyway, you want faster and faster. Fast cars cost more, slow cars cost too much too. I don't think a generic car should cost over $10,000. Do we really need 2 radio antennas? Don't think you don't pay for that stupidity either. Anyway, we were talking about broadband. A good dial up will connect at about 3.4K/sec. Now that's fine for alot of webpages. They will load in a minute or two. But there are alot of pages out there that are just not worth looking at. Mine are all great but alot of them are less than great. Now you've wasted a couple of minutes waiting for this garbage to load and it's not worth it. Time gone and you can never get it back. Now a web page can run anywhere from a couple of kilobytes to a couple of megabytes depending on the IQ of the webmaster (i.e. the bigger the page the lower the IQ). Flash screens and gifs take time to download and may or may not be worth the wait. Well, with broadband the wait is cut conciderably. You waste less time. Broadband saves your finite time. Email downloads faster, if you run a website, uploads are faster. Everything online is faster. Why are you so patient with connection times? Maybe you are afraid if the time factor is taken out you will become as addicted as I am? Take the plunge, go broadband. You can always go back to dialup if you wish, hehe.
I've heard the arguments...It costs more...how much is your time worth? You'd rather eat fast food crap to save cooking time. If you have a second phone line maybe you can get cable for the same price as dialup and the extra line. If not, get it anyway. I only use it for email...that's because dialup is so slow. Get broadband and click stuff. They don't have broadband where I am...move. My kids are in school, I can't just move...good, then they are old enough to help you pack...move. I like it where I am now...if they don't have broadband, your place sucks...move. I might become addicted to the net...welcome to the club. Well, I hope you have weighed my arguments with yours and realized that broadband is the one true way to Web Goodness. If not, then you are probably still waiting for this page to load on your dialup. Enjoy...

OP-ED 12 OCT:

Greetings, welcome to yet another op-ed column. Today, my topic is a simple straightforward one. The U.S. economy. Yup, this is how I see it. Our economy is based on buying and selling. Companies make stuff and then try to sell it at a profit to support themselves and buy enough supplies to make more stuff to sell again. Some companies that make stuff are too big to be owned by any one person and so they have some paper which gives partial ownership of the company to whoever owns the paper. These shares are sold to the public to some extent but most of it is kept by the company to give out to top executives as part of their recruiting package along with salaries most of us can only dream about and bonuses that are more than what we make in a year or two. These shares are held by the big cheeses in the hope that they will go up. Sort of an incentive to do the job they were hired to do. If they do their jobs the stock will go up and so their pile of stock is worth more and therefore they are worth more. That is important to them, how much they are worth. Now, the stocks that are left over are traded on Wall St. These are a pitiful few of the shares in a company but these few shares determine how much the blocks that the execs have are worth. That makes the public shares very powerful but volatile. Sounds pretty flimsy to me. Let's see just how flimsy...
Each time a share is traded it is sold by someone who thinks the stock will go down. It is then bought by someone who thinks the stock will go up. Both cannot be right so someone has to lose out so everybody buys into many different stocks to make up the difference. At the end of the day the stock is up or down based on, get this, how much of it was traded. Sure, sometimes the stock goes up because the company does something to make it go up like invent a solar powered car or release the 17th variation of the same PC operating system which this time, dammit, really is the most stable and reliable and easiest one to use. But even then the value only goes up because the traders think it will be worth more and buy alot of shares thus making the value increase. Still sounds flimsy to me...How flimsy? OK.
Now, the economy always slumps when a new president is elected. Why? Because the traders expect it to so they don't buy as much as they would if the old pres was still there. It is expected but they are careful not to sell everything beforehand because that would cause a crash. Now, this slump is reported by the media as 'news' every time and the more they say 'the economy is down/flat/in a slump' whatever, the longer it is before trading gets back to normal. This time around, we were going from a liberal to a conservative administration so everyone expected a big slump and thus created one by selling off more and more stock. Well, guess what. The slump continues until the traders think the slump should be over and start buying. Now this is reported by the media as a recession and now the consumers (you and me) start getting worried about job cuts. Job cuts factor in because these days, a company that lays off workers gets they're stock bought because traders think it should be worth more. That's because they are seen as 'trimming the fat from the company' and will be making a profit (which will be divided between the company and the top execs). The problem is that companies have been 'trimming the fat' for years to give their stock a boost, again, divided up by the top dogs. To me, a company that can't make payroll is a failure and the execs are the ones to blame but they are rarely affected by layoffs. If they do get canned they have all kinds of severance packages in their contracts and usually get quite a chunk of change when they get fired. See, they can have a contract but they get really upset when the workers try to get a union so they have contracts too. Odd, isn't it? Back on topic...Job cuts, now the consumers start saving up money. They decide to wait on the new sport utility/snowmobile/computer/golfclubs etc...They still buy food and such but farmers and ranchers have been taking it in the shorts for decades now. So now we're starting to affect the real economy, not the Wall St. paper one...
Along comes a disaster, say psychopathic killers crash into the World Trade Centers and kill thousands. Now the media is distracted and does a pretty good job of doing their job, reporting the news (in case they've forgotten already). For two or three days anyway but then they slipped back into their old selves. Reporting the 'news' that experts didn't know how the economy would be affected. The experts didn't know anything and they reported that as news. When Wall St. opened of course the traders waited to see what would happen and only sold off a little 'just to be safe'. The problem is, eveybody sold off a little. Guess what, now the media reports a down trading day. I, for one, wasn't suprised in the least. Next day more stocks are sold off and again the media reports down trading. Now consumers are hearing it. 'The economy is down' so they are holding onto their money. Creating the slow economy that the media has already reported based on the stock market. And that really only affected the top dogs as we saw earlier. Now we have companies lining up to lay off workers and blaming the terrorist attacks for it. All these sorry bastards are doing is trying to keep their stock value up so they don't lose any of their personal assets. Some companies (my company) didn't even wait for the slump. They started it, by annoucing to the whole world that they were laying off thousands. They then went to the govenment and asked for loans (they are loans btw, not handouts as the media keeps saying) after they started laying off. Yes I'm talking about an airline, in fact the first airline to announce layoffs. They started this whole mess 4 days after the attacks (on a Saturday, so their stock would'nt get dumped whenever the market opened, how sleesy. 5000 innocent victims killed and all these cheesedicks can think of is their money). If you paid attention you know what airline I mean. (If not, it starts with a C and ends in ontinental). Again, just to keep their personal stocks from dropping. And, of course, when the companies recover the heads will all give themselves a big bonus for doing such a great job of keeping the company going. Of course, the laid off workers are still laid off. Maybe they'll get to come back but most will take paycuts if they do. And the extra profit gets split up among the top dogs. Ah, the American economy. Always a good excuse to drink...
Bail us out of this mess, people. Go out and buy stuff, stuff you don't really need. Give the economy the boost it needs. Lord knows the idiots running the system can't seem to figure out what's wrong. Take care, all.

SEP 19: Hello all, welcome to my latest op-ed. Again, I start typing and have to wait to see what comes out. Today is the 1 week +1 day anniversary of the cowardly, sneaky, unwarranted attack on the World Trade Center Towers and the Pentagon. I waited hoping I could keep from sounding like I was filled with hate for those responsible. Let me preface with this: I hope you camel humping desert scum are rotting in Hell, you son of a whore camel bastards. I guess waiting hasn't helped.

Ok, so some 20 middle eastern 'undocumented immigrants'(that's what my local paper calls them) came into our country and killed some 5000 of our citizens. What in the hell were they thinking. Yeah, Allah and all that. Die in the Jihad and get a hundred beautiful wives in the afterlife or some crap. Maybe if they got laid here they wouldn't be so willing to die to get some. What in the hell are these assholes thinking? My theory is that since they don't have trees, they don't have toilet paper and so they all have sore asses. Add to that that their women are so ugly they have to cover them up until after the wedding (but you can have many wives. Four is what I heard from some Saudis so it's a crap shoot. But you have to treat them all the same.) and the fact that it's just so damn hot and you can see that most people would flip out. That is no excuse. They still suck. So now some Afganis are going to get blown to hell and for what? Some rich asshole desert rat wants to exert his influence over the weak minded. 'I will pay for your flight training and you will become a pilot. Then you will crash into a building and die and get a hundred beautiful wives etc.' What crap. You stupid bastards are dead. You die and rot in Hell if there's any justice. Did I mention that you suck? Morons.
Which brings me to a couple of religious folks. Good Christians, Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson. Where in the hell to start with these two idiots? Here they are, on TV saying how that we brought this on ourselves. What kind of moronic bullshit is this? These two dickheads have been the bane of southerners for years. They're fanatical to the extreme. They blame gays, abortionists, feminists and the ACLU for this and everything else too. (I blame the assholes driving the planes). These two are as bad as that bin Laden prick. They just aim at a different target. FYI, I'm not a gay, feminist, abortionist or ACLU member. I'm what you'd call mainstream, though I do tend to lean to the right on most topics the media concidered news a couple of weeks back. Anyway, these two 'good Christians' are using the death of 5000 Americans to push their cause and the casualties don't matter. Well, I think we should pay no attention to these losers. They are not much better than the assholes responsible for this mess. They too are religeous fanatics but with airconditioning, toilet paper and one wife (and maybe a few mistresses).
Now if I sounded flipant at all, I assure you this is by no means humourous to me. I am outraged. This was a sneaky bastard attack and nothing less than an act of war. I've watched more news this week than I ever have and I'd love to get my hands on that bin Laden bastard. But let's not feed on each other. Middle eastern Americans are still Americans and we don't need to turn on each other. And we must all be willing to sacrifice for the sake of security right now. Peace be with us and God bless the innocent casualties of this.

My 2cents on the KSAT News security article here.

op-ed:6 July: The Death of an Armadillo (for all my PETA pals)

This weekend was the Fourth of July, a party weekend for most. But an armadillo did not survive.
Me and my family went to visit some friends for the holiday. My wife had a day off and I was on my weekend which falls in the middle of the week. So we loaded up the van for a day trip and went to hang with our friends who live in the boonies south of Gonzales, Texas.
It was a hot day and humid too. I started out drinking Shaefer Light (the official beer of cheap webmasters). As the day wore on I was not looking forward to the drive home which takes about 2 1/2 hours. My wife was having a good time and I decided that it was too hot to drink cheap beer anyway, so I would not drink too much and would drive home. She had apparantly decided the same thing because she stopped drinking too. The afternoon wore on and we needed a fireworks run so I decided I had not had enough beer to affect me much and off we went. We ran up to Yoakum and bought some fireworks. We saw a opossum getting ate up by a buzzard on the way. It was in the other lane so I decided to nail the buzzard, if I could, on the way back. I hate buzzards. On the way back the buzzard spotted me and flew up into a tree while I went by. Rats. We happened to discuss what to do if an animal ran out in front of you. We, being guys in the country, said that it would be too bad but better to snuff a woodland critter than to swerve and run into a tree and would steer straight on. How profetic. We headed back to the party. It was still hot and humid. I was guzzeling bottled water like it was a new idea. I had a couple more beers too just to break up the monotony and conserve the water. Was I drunk? No, I had maybe 8 beers in 12 hours and sweated a bunch so I stunk too.
Fireworks time!! All I wanted was to get on the road home. A shower, I sure would love a shower. OK, I have'nt blown off firecrackers since I was about 10 so I wanted to do that too but I sure would love a shower. BTW, horses don't like fireworks. OK, so after the locals got the horse back into the pen, which she had kicked down when the fireworks started going off, we started tossing fire crackers into the fire. Ya gotta have a fire in the country since there's no light pollution you can't see anything at night.
OK, so the point is? Finally, this hot, sticky gala affair is over, more or less. Great time, but I want a damn shower. I could, of course get a shower there but I'd have to put on the same clothes, yuk. Anyway, the kids are ready to leave because they did'nt argue when we told them to get ready to leave, whew. Packing up and goodbyes time. I'm driving, patting myself on the back for moderation though if I had drank too much the heat might have killed me, we set out. I'm wearing my glasses which I don't have to wear but I like to see at night especially if I don't know the road. We head out, speed less than 60mph cause it's the law and besides I'm in a new van and I have the family in there. I see a critter up ahead and think 'another dead animal in the road' and veer to the right so I won't smash him more than he already is. A millisecond later I think 'it's quite 3 dimentional for roadkill' and the wife says 'armadillo'. Then I see that we have an intact armadillo in front of us. I veer to the left but the road is crowned and I don't really know what is on the left so I don't veer too much. Just enough to clear the thing if he does'nt move. There is a ditch on the right and I percieve a tree and a house on the left. Well, if the stupid thing does'nt move maybe... Damn, he started moving to the left. He's just walking along like it's another trip to the watering hole. So I did the only thing I could do. I cut right again so I wouldn't hit him with the wheels. Why do they do that? If he had turned around or just stayed still he'd be there to get run over today. But he didn't...thump...thump...thump.
I hate buzzards but they do provide a good clean-up service.
So, the point of this piece seems to be, don't to lose control of your car and crash into a tree trying to avoid hitting some animal. Drive safe, ya'll.

op-ed 15May01: FS Division

Once upon a time there was an online community. The FlightSim community. It was a collection of folks who had met in the GamingZone or online somewhere and got to know one another. Had they met in person, at a Starbucks or a Jims or in a mall, they might have chated for a bit and probably parted, wanting to continue the relationship but not really knowing how. Do you ask another guy for his phone number, so you can call him sometime? (For the girls, the answer is no you can't!) Due to the pressures of life or a previous commitment, they parted never knowing or maybe not really caring, how to get in contact with the person they had shared time and chat with, even if they seemed to have a common interest and maybe thought a new friend had been found. There is no way for them to establish a fast friendship. But, had they met in the Zone, maybe flew together, found a common frame of reference such as flying Alaska or Nepal (my favorite) or IFR or 747's or Piper Cubs or whatever, there is an opportunity to get to know someone, chat, share interests. After all, once you're at cruise and trimmed up there isn't much to do. To make a long story short, friendships are formed in the zone, flying multiplayer, online. Soon, you get online, hoping to see some of your friends online too. You live in the zone, waiting to see if your friends sleep in an extra hour, hoping they don't because you want to share your night's flying with them, or just chat. Just say 'Hi'. All is great with the world, life is good.
Then, one day Microsoft announces a new version of FS, FS2000. Hmm, sounds good you think. 'I'll have to see how it looks'. FS98 is a great sim but 'Maybe they have improved on it and thus we can have even more fun. Cool screenshots and the minimum hardware requirement isn't too much more than FS98 and it's less than what I have, maybe we can start flying in 2k'. Then you try it, oh my. 'Why is it so jerky? It doesn't want to even start unless I have just done a restart. But my system is way over the minimum required hardware?' So, you fiddle with it for 6 months. MS releases a patch (8meg) to fix the kludge. It doesn't help. They release patch v2 (9meg). Finally, you have added 8bit clouds and tinkered and got the thing to run in a small window, but frames are somewhat stable and you can fly online. Meanwhile, some of your online pals have gotten new computers just to be able to run FS2k. The rest have stayed on 98 and you don't know what to do because you can get along in 2k but still prefer FS98 and some of your zone friends are in one room while the others are in another room. So, you try to balance your time and catch whoever you think might be on. The result? You never catch anyone on and meanwhile, the zone chats are taken over by flamers (ones who flame but if the shoe fits...), VA commercials (speaks for itself) or kiddies who don't even have FS but have gotten into the chat room and love to see how much they can get away with. Meanwhile, the sysops have been reorganized and any control they had has been taken away because MS supersysop has gotten too many complaints about sysops just trying to do the job they were hired (and not paid) for.
Then outcomes FScombat2. 'OK, here we are' you think. The preeminent flightsim. This is what we've been waiting for. Rah, rah, rah. Actually, it works better than 2k on my hardware but then it really has less to do. However MS being MS has to put up 40 plane dogfights, knowing that the majority of the hardware out there won't handle it. (Just to catch the ones who liked CFS and didn't care about FS2k).
OK, I went and got a new computer so I could run CFS2 (getting stuck with Windows Me, an Evil mix of 98 and NT that no sane company would think of releasing unless they had a corner on the market, probably an XP testbed, in the process). Despite me not having 396megs of RAM or whatever, FS2k and CFS2 run okay. 128meg RAM and 1.4ghz AMD.
Now, there is talk of FS02. Oh, and this one won't require any faster hardware than 2k. Fool me once...
In short, I blame MicroSoft for the dismanteling of the FS community and the inability to police ourselves. We tried but our attentions were divided by the release of too many inferior products and we had to spend too much time just getting the things to run. Thus losing control of the zone.
As a result, some online friends have moved on, some are still there but into other things. Some, like me, don't go to the zone anymore.
I blame MicroSoft for the fragmentation of the FS community.

op-ed 5Mar01:
This oped is on a subject that really bugs me. OK, not that much but I believe in literacy and the blurring of the meanings for the words 'affect' and 'effect' is not helping matters. This blurring is exacerbated by the net so I will use this same tool in an attempt to reverse, stem or slow the trend.

affect: to have an effect on; influence; produce a change in.
effect: anything brought about by a cause or agent; result.

So, we can see that the two words do not mean the same thing thus cannot be used interchangably. How many times have you read that something 'effected' something or someone. This is wrong. Something can be 'affected'. A change can have an 'effect'. It does not cause an 'affect' though it can have an 'affect'. (I saw 'affect' used like that in my own city's newspaper which is the only time I've really noticed affect misused). Well, this has had the effect of confusing me so I shall effect a closing before I'm adversely affected but remember, nothing can 'effect' you or anyone else.

op-ed January 9 2001: (A Tripod Webmaster's Christmas Story)

Well, here we are, in a new year. Happy New Years, everybody. OK, that's out of the way. Now, on with the show. Here is the latest op-ed. I'm sorry to say it is directed at my very own host, Tripod. I have been on Tripod not that long but I have been on this planet long enough to have an idea of what's going on. I have a few sites on Tripod which I try to keep in a state of flux. It's a lot of work and very time consuming. I must add that since I intend to make no money from this endevor and only do it for the benefit of a few of my friends and any one else who stumbles across this site, the additions that I make to the sites and the little feedback that I get is my only reward. I do enjoy it. It is fun to try to come up with things to put up and then try to figure out how to make them or where to find them. It is also not my policy to complain about something that is given to me for Free. However, I feel that I must vent somehow and this is my chosen venue. Thus, the story begins. Shortly before Thanksgiving 2000 I started getting my sites holiday compliant. I put up Thanksgiving decorations on most of my sites. Some were sent to me and some I found. I had a great time. They looked good. Thanksgiving came and went and I started adding Christmas decorations to my sites. Once again, I had a great time and they looked good. However, a couple of days before Christmas I was no longer able to make changes to my .html sites (of which this is not one). Nor was I able to take down my Thanksgiving decorations, thus making my sites look neglected and sloppy. I continued to work on my sitebuilder sites and make them Christmas ready. Once again, I had a good time. I would have liked to change all my sites but it's the holidays and the engineers are probably off for the holidays. Well, oh my, the day before Christmas all my sites were locked out. I could'nt change anything! Well, once again, the engineers must be off for the holidays. Christmas came and went. The builder sites came back up. They are, however, limited as to what you can add to the pages. That's why I learned some html. New Years was coming. I sent an email (not email as we know it but a block that you have to fill in) to Tripod describing my woes. (Errors when I try to manage the files in file manager). Alas, no reply was forthcoming and still no joy on the html sites. New Years Eve, nada. I had some great fireworks to add but nope, twas not meant to be. New Years came and went. I spent it shopping for a new server. I spent the next weekend looking too. I tried a couple but they did not meet my needs (catering to idiots). I signed up for fortunecities and wasted a few hours before I resigned. I tried MSN communities. I have'nt figured out how to resign from them yet. I tried one which I don't recall but it had a witch site as 'site of the month'. I looked at NBCi but they have a permanent commercial bar taking up space on everybodys browser. I then signed up for Geocities. This one is not bad. Pretty similar to Tripod filemanager. I copied one of my sites over there. Still it's different from what I was used to. Then I had an idea. Want to know what it was? OK, I thought so. I started a new account on Tripod. Yup, just put up a new name and I'm in again. I have copied all my .html sites over (see the 'Links' page) but how to swap the builder sites? There I'm hung. Ironic, is'nt it? I start the new account because I can't edit the html files and now I can't figure out how to copy over the sites that were working. I would laugh but I'm too busy. Well, life's rough and I know that but today I get an email from Tripod. It was about the 'temporary interruption error'. Well, this one is a fact of life at tripod and I just ignore it. You have to redo a lot of work sometimes but it's not too often unless you're typing a long op-ed column (save it to notepad before clicking 'Done'). They even included a copy of my email which had said nothing about 'temporary interuption' and said their engineers were working on the problem. Keep in mind, this has been over 2 weeks and over a week since I emailed them (which explains why they say that the problem will probably be cleared up by the time they respond). Sure thing. Well, once again, life is a tough business and I will press on having already figured out a partial solution. Though I am somewhat upset about the whole affair, I resolve to work around it and press on but.... There's always a but. I happened to go to the sitebuilder site today under my new alias and I found out what they have been working on over the holidays. Instead of fixing my file manager, they have been working on this geek dude and his fancy sitebuilder sign in screen. Oh my. Well, life is rough and I don't complain about free stuff.

Click the geek for a better look. Its drags though.


(Don't worry about me, I have moved in and converted as required. Thanks for not bothering me while I was in turmoil, or for some time there after, in fact not at all. Well keep that silence coming in folks. :ed) _____________________________________________________

Notice to P.E.T.A.: It's Thanksgiving and I invite all PETA fanatics over to my place for turkey. I might even have some endangered spiecies on the grill if the Greenpeace and the Sierra club drop by. Bon apitete.

OP-ED 8 OCT 2000: (amended, see below) Hello again. It's time for another Op-Ed. The topic I've chosen this time is P.E.T.A. People for Ethical Treatment of Animals. Apparantly, people don't matter to them. These are the wackos that go around throwing red paint on fur wearers and throwing pies at executives of the meat industry and then screeching some bit of their mantra before being carted off. Well, dear me. I'd like to know where these folks get off doing these kinds of things to somebody who disagrees with their OPINION. Yes, it's just their opinion that the rest of us should'nt eat meat. We should'nt fish or hunt or do anything that disturbs the little critters. They also say we should'nt drink milk. Personally, I don't hunt. I will scarf down a burger or steak. I don't fish much and when I do I always let them go. I like to eat fish too. I'm not a big fan of chicken but I've been known to eat it from time to time. And I always have milk on cereal. This puts me on the PETA bad guys list. Shame on me. I should be eating lettuce, celery and other assorted shrubbery. I doubt the plants would agree. I think everybody should drink beer every day. The world would be a better place and everybody would be more relaxed and easier to get along with. This would also get everybody off of this skinny mania that is so popular today. That's my OPINION. Does this give me the right to go around throwing beer on everyone who does'nt choose to drink beer? No, it does not. I have to conform to societies accepted behavioral standards like everybody else. I'm not allowed to harrass and assault poeple who disagree with me. They are entitled to their opinions. Apparantly, the wackos of PETA have gotten the idea that they are above the rules of society because they have gotten a little press and a few wacko celebs on their side. Like Bill Maher, who is doing the anti milk ads. I knew there was a reason I did'nt like that guy. Maybe I should go throw beer on him? No, I can't do that. See PETA? It's not allowed. That's not hard to understand. When are we going to quit bowing to these weirdos just because the news media says we should? Grind up a cow today to show you care. And don't waste beer pouring it on those PETA losers. I say grab a burger and a beer and just say NO to PETA. By the way I recommend the fajita PETA (sic).

amendment: 30 Oct 00

VEGETARIAN FOODS APPEAR ON PRISON MENUS.

I heard about this a few days ago but confirmation came from the PETA site itself. The courts have ruled that the Bureau of Prisons must provide a vegitarian diet for prisoners. Guess who pays for this special diet for convicts. Yup, you and I. Thanks to a suit brought by a prisoner named Keith Maydak who supposedly 'is morally opposed to killing animals for food and adheres to a completely animal-free diet'. I'd love to know what he's in for. Washington -- Now on the menu at a federal prison near you: Tofu marinara, veggie burgers, braised tofu, and vegetarian "chicken" and "meatballs." All are part of the Bureau of Prison's new "No-Flesh Alternative" program, which makes vegan food available to all federal prisoners at every meal. Oh well. Still, my favorite part of the article is a quote from some PETA mouthpiece. Says PETA's Bruce Friedrich. "It should help us all sleep a little better to know we're taking away violent criminals' taste for blood." Now that's funny. Just shows that too much vegetables will rot your mind.

Update 16 Nov 00: This was just too good to ignore... From the pages of The Darwin Awards: Two animal rights activists were protesting the cruelty of sending pigs to a slaughterhouse in Bonn by freeing a captive herd. Suddenly all two thousand of pigs stampeded through the gate they were opening, and trampled the hapless protesters to death. For a good time call P.E.T.A

The Darin Awards.

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Well, what do ya know. I got a reply to the op-ed. Very cool. Ok, it's from a friend of mine but maybe it will start a trend. Who knows?

LETTERS!

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