Friday, November 17, 2006

Watching the Watchers

First up is what happens when Presidential politics meets the land of under-supplied video game console launches. Apparently Wal-Mart's bitter enemy, John Edwards, is looking for a PS3 for Christmas, and his staffers aren't afraid to drop his name to cut into lines. Wal-Mart loved it. Seriously, how cruddy would it be to have your Christmas present published in the press?

Meanwhile in the world of weapon development, we have the Aliens-like autonomic sentry gun and LASERs in spaaaaaace. The latter story sounds like the Grand Cannon from a cartoon I used to watch back in the day. And who do I have to yell at to get web pages to write articles in a font readable by humans and to use the wacky horizontal space in my browser? But I digress...

It appears that immigrants are going to be devoid of the most basic of rights for a while longer as far as the "war on terror" is concerned.

And finally, we have an article about the ongoing electronic voting fiasco that the primary media (by which I mean every television news program except the Daily Show) has not picked up on.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

America Looses a Tough Guy

Yeah, Clint Eastwood can be intimidating. The Duke gets praise for being the iconic American Cowboy. But the guy that defined tough for me as a kid was Jack Palance. I'm fairly sure he could have knocked my teeth out just by glaring at me. He passed on of natural causes yesterday. He was a veteran, a boxer, a cranky, cranky man, and an entertainer. Believe it or not.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Big Storm

Hurricane pictures from space are fascinating to me. They range from the blob of clouds to the mammoth and impressive, such as Katrina. Now imagine a hurricane that is 3000 miles across with winds in excess of 350 miles per hour. Thankfully it isn't here on Earth. It's at the south pole of Saturn, and it is not behaving like any hurricane we have seen before.

Reality is Scarier Than Fiction

Eugenics is one of those concepts that seems so nebulous that it would never be seriously tried. As with so many things, the Nazis did try it. The personal effects were devastating. Tomorrow is Veterans' Day. Remember the vets, both old and new, and never forget what they did/are doing for us.

Friday, November 3, 2006

Technology Trends of the Elected

CNET has an interesting story on their version of the best and worst friends of technology in the Congress. It illustrates how the complex issues around the Internet defy normal party lines. Though John Kerry does once again show his tendency to waffle across both sides of an issue...

The King of Novelty Music

After a long and storied music career, Weird Al Yankovic has finally cracked the Billboard Top 10. I enjoy his music, though less now than in the past for the same reason he remains relevant: he follows the current music trends. And it looks like the Internet actually helped him instead of causing all of his music to be stolen...

Watching the Watchers

Some troops on active duty are using the rules to speak out against the war in Iraq. This is probably a very bad sign for the administration as is seems increasingly likely that the results of the Iraq war will be the opposite of what they had hoped. In a similar vein, one poll shows that our allies over in the U.K. think that the U.S. President is a greater threat to world peace than the North Korean dictator.

The head of the Government Accountability Office (now there's an office that has no power) is calling the government to task about their spending habits. Is this further fuel for those worried about the collapse of the middle class and the end of the U.S. as an economic power or just hyperbolic bluster?

And good grief, I agree with something Al Sharpton is saying. He blames the "Christian Right" for putting too much emphasis on sexual morality issues while neglecting stuff the church should really be dealing with.

Not All Cost Cutting Good For Stocks

I'm a bit slow in posting this, but it appears that BP cost cutting was responsible for the refinery explosion last year. This just fuels my own opinion that corporations are optimized for the wrong stuff. If only I could come up with something that would be better instead of having to rely on human honor and compassion. We don't seem to have enough of either to go around.