Thursday, May 31, 2007
The MIT Tech Review has an article on how Microsoft has repackaged the touch screen in an interesting and expensive way. To be fair, it also can recognize what is placed on it, including bar codes, which is an interesting application of technology.
In a step in the right direction, Apple announced that it will start selling music through its iTunes service that does not have restrictive usage software (so-called DRM software) embedded in it.
In a step in the wrong direction, Apple will charge more ($1.29 per song instead of $0.99) for not assuming their customers are thieves.
Update: Apple still assumes its customer are thieves. Ars Technica has the details:
With great power comes great responsibility, and apparently with DRM-free music comes files embedded with identifying information. Such is the situation with Apple's new DRM-free music: songs sold without DRM still have a user's full name and account e-mail embedded in them, which means that dropping that new DRM-free song on your favorite P2P network could come back to bite you.
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
“Actually there are three systems,” Dr. Cordova said, because Cuba has two: one is for party officials and foreigners like those Mr. Moore brought to Havana. “It is as good as this one here, with all the resources, the best doctors, the best medicines, and nobody pays a cent,” he said.
But for the 11 million ordinary Cubans, hospitals are often ill equipped and patients “have to bring their own food, soap, sheets — they have to bring everything.” And up to 20,000 Cuban doctors may be working in Venezuela, creating a shortage in Cuba. . . .
Until he had to have emergency surgery last year, Fidel Castro — who turned 80 this year — was considered a model of vibrant long life in Cuba. But it was only last week that he acknowledged in an open letter that his initial surgery by Cuban doctors had been botched. He did not confirm, however, that a specialist had been flown in from Spain last December to help set things right.
HT to Mr. Reynolds.
I was stopped by someone the other week who said it was not surprising there was so much terrorism in the world when we invaded their countries (meaning Afghanistan and Iraq). No wonder Muslims felt angry.
I said to him: tell me exactly what they feel angry about. We remove two utterly brutal and dictatorial regimes; we replace them with a UN-supervised democratic process.
And the only reason it is difficult still is because other Muslims are using terrorism to try to destroy the fledgling democracy and, in doing so, are killing fellow Muslims.
Why aren’t they angry about the people doing the killing? The odd thing about the conversation is I could tell it was the first time he’d heard this argument.
HT to Ed Driscoll.
The US went into eastern Europe to protect Muslims from genocide and are still there performing that task.
Monday, May 28, 2007
Yesterday, Rosie’s chief writer, Janette Barber, was allegedly escorted from the building after she was caught drawing moustaches on photographs of Hasselbeck that hang in the “View” studios.
The Post’s Adam Buckman reports ABC confirmed in a statement only that “photographs at ‘The View’s’ offices were defaced. Rosie O’Donnell was not in the building. ABC Legal and Human Resources are investigating the matter.” Barber is an old friend of O’Donnell who worked with her years ago on “The Rosie O’Donnell Show.”
There were also rumors O’Donnell was so angry after her argument with Hasselbeck that she trashed her dressing room, although ABC denied the tantrum.
Sunday, May 27, 2007
CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuela’s top court on Friday ordered the Defense Ministry to take control of installations of an opposition television station amid a show of military force before the station’s controversial closure.
President Hugo Chavez’s decision to close the RCTV television channel, which he accuses of backing a 2002 coup against him, has prompted international condemnation and several demonstrations.
Venezuela’s Supreme Court ordered the military to “guard, control and monitor” some of the station’s installations and equipment including transmission equipment and antennas throughout the country.
An RCTV source, speaking on condition of anonymity, said staff at the station believed troops would take over the station’s Caracas headquarters.
The court determined that the government must take RCTV’s broadcast equipment to ensure a smooth handover to a state channel that will replace RCTV with broadcasts promoting the values of Chavez’s socialist revolution.
Rob follows up with some damn good points:
Don’t worry guys, Chavez is totally not a dictator. He was elected by the people, remember? And Cindy Sheehan likes him. She’d even rather live in in Venezuela under Chavez than America.
Hillary Clinton’s fund raising partner Harry Belafonte loves him too, as does American actor Danny Glover who has agreed to make movies funded by Chavez’s blood money.
And don’t forget all those union leaders and college professors who were giving Chavez standing ovations when he was in the US to speak at the UN.
All joking aside, though, I’d like to hear just one of Chavez’s apologists on the left to explain to me how the seizing of his country’s media is a good thing.
I know this falls under the heading of "extremely obvious" rather than news, but since I doubt this will be in the Boston Globe...
Byron York has the story:
In her testimony before the House, Mrs. Wilson said flatly, “I did not recommend him. I did not suggest him.” She told the House committee that a 2004 Senate report, which concluded that she had indeed suggested her husband for the trip, was simply wrong. In particular, Mrs. Wilson pointed to a February 12, 2002, memo she had written, which the Senate said showed that she had suggested her husband for the trip, and claimed that the Senate had taken the memo "out of context” to “make it seem as though I had suggested or recommended him."
The 2004 Senate report to which Mrs. Wilson referred had quoted a brief excerpt from her memo. In the new report, Sen. Bond publishes the whole thing, and it seems to indicate clearly that Mrs. Wilson suggested her husband for the trip. The memo was occasioned by a February 5, 2002 CIA intelligence report about Niger, Iraq, and uranium. The report had been circulating in the intelligence community for a week by February 12, and Mrs. Wilson headlined her memo, "Iraq-related Nuclear Report Makes a Splash."
What will happen to Valerie Plame because her crime? The MSM/DNC will continue to portray her as a victim, and heap praise upon her. The innocent will continue to be punished and the guilty get away scott free.
HT to Ace.
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
The BBC reports on what UN so called "Peacekeepers" are doing:
Pakistani UN peacekeeping troops have traded in gold and sold weapons to Congolese militia groups they were meant to disarm, the BBC has learnt.
These militia groups were guilty of some of the worst human rights abuses during the Democratic Republic of Congo's long civil war.
The trading went on in 2005. A UN investigative team sent to gather evidence was obstructed and threatened.
The team's report was buried by the UN itself to "avoid political fallout".
Fred Thompson sums up a serious problem at Turtle Bay:
"When Fidel Castro and Kim Jong Il have as much say in U.N. matters as the entire populations of Poland and New Zealand, you’re going to have problems."
Canadians call Michael Moore on not presenting an accurate view of Canadian health care.
Not presenting the truth or even actual facts in his mockumentaries is not new behavior.
HT to Mr. Reynolds.
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
It takes some chutzpah to announce to the world that President Bush is something akin to the worst president ever and to accuse out-going Prime Minister Tony Blair of being Bush's lapdog.
For shame Jimmy Carter. The man who told people that all that is left is a downward spiral of malaise and to wear a sweater while the oil crisis deepened to say this? The man who negotiated away the Panama Canal so now we find the People's Republic of China, via a proxy, administering the canal. Who's idea of being forceful in the face of Soviet aggression in Afghanistan was to keep the US Olympic team home. The 'statesman' who talked the Shah of Iran to leave quietly so Ayatollah Khomeini could turn Iran into a radical Islamic state. The 'humanitarian' who allowed the now exiled Shah into the US for medical treatment that triggered the seizing of the American embassy in Tehran. The 'resolute' President who, after much dithering, ordered a downsized Pentagon to launch an audacious rescue mission of the hostages that failed because it was too complex and riven with intra-service rivalries.
I had thought the former president named Carter had reached his nadir with the comments virulently against Israel and his blind affirmation of Hugo Chavez seizing dictatorial power over the formerly democratic Venezuela. Alas I was wrong.
Monday, May 21, 2007
Budget: Congress’ massive $2.9 trillion spending plan makes it clear what Democrats stand for: higher taxes, bigger deficits and runaway Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security spending that will bankrupt America.
When President Reagan cut income tax rates in the 1980s, Democrats screamed that it was just a boon to the rich. But the economy expanded in historic terms, Reagan was re-elected in a 49-state landslide and now even Democrats concede the former movie star’s greatness as a president.
George W. Bush’s historic tax cuts were greeted with similar charges from Democrats. Yet since they became law, nearly 8 million jobs have been generated during five straight years of growth, unemployment is a mere 4.5% and government coffers — thanks to all the economic activity — have enjoyed record tax revenues.
Bush too was re-elected.
Have Democrats learned nothing?
HT to Rob who follows up with:
I fully expect that once Americans get a taste of the tax bills Democrats are going to be generating their slim majority in Congress isn’t going to last long. Because aside from things like abortion, gay marriage, war and guns...if there’s one thing nearly all Americans can agree on it’s that we hate paying taxes.
The only thing Republicans need to do is oust the big-spenders within their own party and set about re-convincing Americans that they represent fiscally responsible leadership. Though that’ll be a long march for them given the profligate spending they’ve engaged in over the last several years.
Green heroine Rachel Carson got DDT banned. Prior to that malaria was nearly wiped out. Now malaria kills more than 800,000 children under age five every year according to the CDC. Rich Karlgaard points out, "Every year, 800,000 small children die from malaria, a disease once nearly eradicated. Ponder that."
HT to Mr. Reynolds who pens these telling words, "...ongoing political battles over DDT, which tend to pit green correctness against the lives of poor people in the Third World."
Update: "Reducing" the number of children just may be part of their master plan.
Sunday, May 20, 2007
The America that John Edwards lives in, and doesn't want you in, includes "a $480,000 part-time job as a consultant to an investment firm that keeps its hedge funds in the Cayman Islands as a tax shelter for its clients." "Mr. Edwards said [...] that if he's elected President he'll still try to abolish offshore tax shelters."
A combination of misinterpreted and misguided science, media hype, and political spin had created the current hysteria and it was time to put a stop to it.
"It is time to attack the myth of global warming," he said.
Water vapour was responsible for 95 per cent of the greenhouse effect, an effect which was vital to keep the world warm, he explained.
"If we didn't have the greenhouse effect the planet would be at minus 18 deg C but because we do have the greenhouse effect it is plus 15 deg C, all the time."
"It's become a witch-hunt; a Salem witch-hunt," he said.
The last thing the Cult of algore extremists want is anybody looking at the facts and real science of the issue.
Read the whole thing.
Friday, May 18, 2007
Not Iraq, but the conflict that is very clearly a civil war that the MSM won't touch with a ten foot hair piece, the one between Palestinian factions Hamas and Fatah.
The Confederate Yankee has the details.
50 heavily armed men abduct 7 police: four them of them found dead, three missing, gun battles leave 20 dead. About a thousand people so far this year shot or decapitated.
Iraq? No, northern Mexico, about a hundred miles south of here. Betting is that the gang was a drug lord's entourage.
To start with, this level of violence is occurring in close proximity to the US border, not half a world away. Of course, the MSM coverage of this is zip.
Both Mr. Hardy and Mr. Reynolds point out that Mexico has very draconian victim disarmament laws.
I'm off to Paris! I hereby revoke every churlish remark I've ever made about those lovely Gallic people
With Nicolas Sarkozy's decisive victory as the new president of France, the French have produced their first pro-American ruler since Louis XVI.
In celebration of France's spectacular return to Western civilization, I bought a Herve Leger dress on Monday, and we're having croissants for breakfast every day this week. This delicate French pastry, by the way, is in the shape of a crescent to commemorate the Crusaders' victory over Islam. Aren't the French just peachy?
"Sarkozy the American," as he is known in France, called Muslim rioters "scum." Louis, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.
He explained his position on Muslim immigrants in France, saying: "Nobody has to, I repeat, live in France. But when you live in France, you respect its rules. That is to say that you are not a polygamist. ... One doesn't practice female genital mutilation on one's daughters, one doesn't slit the throat of the sheep, and one respects the republican rules."
t looks like the Democrats are going to have to drop their talking point about Bush irritating the rest of the world. Evidently not as much as Muslim terrorists irritate the rest of the world. The politicians who hate Bush keep being dumped by their own voters.
At the Democratic presidential debate a few weeks ago, B. Hussein Obama carped that Bush had "alienate(d) the world community" and vowed that he would build "the sort of alliances and trust around the world that has been so lacking over the last six years."
Democrats are terrific at building alliances. Remember how Jimmy Carter won the love of the world by ditching our ally the Shah of Iran, allowing him be replaced by a string of crazy ayatollahs? Since then, we haven't heard a peep from that area of the world.
Thursday, May 17, 2007
...at least in this one case. Here is his statement on the death of the Rev. Fallwell:
“My mother always told me that no matter how much you dislike a person, when you meet them face to face you will find characteristics about them that you like. Jerry Falwell was a perfect example of that. I hated everything he stood for, but after meeting him in person, years after the trial, Jerry Falwell and I became good friends. He would visit me in California and we would debate together on college campuses. I always appreciated his sincerity even though I knew what he was selling and he knew what I was selling.”
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
No real surprise here. It does it in the ratings consistently.
In this case, the NR Media Blog points out the utter lameness of MSNBC hosted debates and how Fox News asked tough questions and nailed the candidates when they avoided answering.
Tuesday, May 15, 2007
The truth is that Cuban medical care has never recovered from Castro's takeover -- when the country's health care ranked among the world's best. He won the support of the Cuban people by promising to replace Batista's dictatorship with free elections, and to end corruption. Once in power, though, he made himself dictator and instituted Soviet-style Communism. Cubans not only failed to regain their democratic rights, their economy plunged into centrally planned poverty.
As many as half of Cuba's doctors fled almost immediately -- and defections continue to this day. Castro won't allow observers in to monitor his nation's true state, but defectors tell us that many Cubans live with permanent malnutrition and long waits for even basic medical services. Many treatments we take for granted aren't available at all -- except to the Communist elite or foreigners with dollars.
For them, Castro keeps "show" clinics equipped with the best medicines and technologies available. It was almost certainly one of these that Moore went to, if the stories in the NY Post and the Daily News are true.
Nothing about this story inspires doubt, though. Elements in Hollywood have been infatuated with the Cuban commander for years. It always leaves me shaking my head when I read about some big-time actor or director going to Cuba and gushing all over Castro. And, regular as rain, they bring up the health care myth when they come home.
Monday, May 14, 2007
Thursday, May 10, 2007
...but not like they predicted. I'm referring to Mr. Reynolds comment:
You know, people told me that if George W. Bush were reelected we'd see professors fired over trumped up charges of ideological nonconformity. And it looks like they were right!
on this story:
The Maricopa County Community College District (MCCCD) has placed a professor on forced administrative leave and has recommended that he be terminated for e-mailing a Thanksgiving message to his colleagues last November. On the day before Thanksgiving, Professor Walter Kehowski sent out the text of George Washington’s “Thanksgiving Day Proclamation of 1789” and a link to the webpage where he’d found it—on Pat Buchanan’s web log. After several recipients complained of being offended by the e-mail, MCCCD found Kehowski guilty of violating the district’s Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) policy and technology usage standards. Kehowski then contacted the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) for help.
“It simply boggles the mind that a professor could find himself facing termination simply for e-mailing the Thanksgiving address of our first president,” FIRE President Greg Lukianoff said. “This situation is an embarrassment to MCCCD and would be laughable if a professor’s most basic rights and very livelihood weren’t on the line.”
This just points out the basic truth in the sad, but true quote by Brian Francoeur, "There's nobody more intolerant and narrow-minded than an tolerant and open-minded liberal..."
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
My attention was drawn to Tenet’s statements that al Qaeda is here and waiting and that they wish nothing more than to be able to see a mushroom cloud above the United States.
Naturally, the media emphasis is not on that. Its attention is on any differences Tenet had with the administration. The media’s premise is that Iraq should not have been considered a real threat to us and that the administration basically misled the country into war. While one may take issue with Tenent on several things, I was intrigued that on some very important issues, Tenet did not follow the media script when answering Russert’s questions.
HT to Mr. Reynolds
Update: He nails it again:
"Oh, to be sure, the French media hates us, but there are a lot of people who say ours does too. Regardless, Sarkozy’s victory has sent shock waves through the world’s media centers."
Where is the "How Libertarian are you?" poll?
|You Are 48% Republican|
You aren't a full fledged Republican yet, but it's probably the party that fits you best.
You probably consider yourself an independent Republican. You usually support the party, but you also think for yourself!
|You Are 16% Democrat|
If you have anything in common with the Democrat party, it's by sheer chance.
You're a staunch conservative, and nothing is going to change that!
So all-in, her stated lifestyle changes have reduced her carbon footprint by about 10 tons / year.
A lot is often made of the fact that she “sometimes” flies in private jets. According to TerraPass, a Gulfstream G4 generates 8,785 Lbs of carbon per flight hour. Let’s assume Laurie David took one roundtrip flight last year between LA and NY. Assume 10 hours of flying time = 87,850 Lbs = 44 tons.
So, so far she’s in the hole by about 34 tons if you assume one r/t private flight.
But hey, she’s started to cut way down on toilet paper.
Glenn Reynolds answers a stupid question from Andrew Sullivan:
ANDREW SULLIVAN ASKS: "If gun rights are civil rights, why would anyone feel the need to hide the fact that they own one?"
I think the short answer is that gun rights are about security, and we'd rather keep the criminals guessing. In addition, doubt about who owns guns generates what economists call "positive externalities," meaning that if a substantial proportion of homeowners have guns, or if a nontrivial number of people out-and-about are carrying concealed guns, potential burglars or assailants have to allow for the possibility that a victim or someone in the neighborhood might be armed. That produces a deterrent effect that benefits even those who do not possess guns This is why, for example, we see fewer burglaries of occupied homes in the United States than in countries like Britain with strict gun controls -- breaking into an occupied home is dangerous. Meanwhile, on a more personal level, those who are armed would prefer to have the advantage of surprise. I should also note that there's a difference between owning guns (the "keep and bear" business) and carrying guns, which is what the whole CCW permit thing is about. That distinction is explained at some length here.
But I'll turn the question around: If abortion is a civil right, why would anyone object to having a newspaper publish a searchable database of people who've had one?
Read the whole thing, plus the links.
While researchers and technologists around the world scramble to find cleaner sources of energy, some chemists are turning to nature's own elegant solution: photosynthesis. In photosynthesis, green plants use the energy in sunlight to break down water and carbon dioxide. By manipulating electrons and hydrogen, oxygen, and carbon atoms in a series of complex chemical reactions, the process ultimately produces the cellulose and lignin that form the structure of the plant, as well as stored energy in the form of sugar. Understanding how this process works, thinks Daniel Nocera, professor of chemistry at MIT, could lead to ways to produce and store solar energy in forms that are practical for powering cars and providing electricity even when the sun isn't shining.
Tuesday, May 08, 2007
democrat House Speaker Nancy "SanFranNan" Pelosi follows in the foot steps of fellow California democrat Diane Feinstein, by setting up a Pork Barrel project that will funnel taxpayer dollars into her husbands pocket.
Monday, May 07, 2007
Sunday, May 06, 2007
democrat Presidental hopeful Chris Dodd is calling for a "corporate" so-called "carbon tax."
The hard cold truth is that those taxes would be passed straight on to the consumer with a profit margin.
That would have a very negative effect on the economy. This is pretty straight forward basic Macro Economics.
Senator Dodd is a smart man and knows this, he just won't admit it.
If Dodd wants to fund alternate fuel research using tax dollars, he should take the money from the pork laden bills his party keeps passing. Not that the Republicans didn't have a taste for pork, but the democrats are once again proving themselves the masters of the art.
Friday, May 04, 2007
Thursday, May 03, 2007
No surprise that it comes from a "liberal" left-wing democrat.
Insight Magazine reports that liberal democrat Rep. Maurice Hinchey of New York has introduced House bill HR 3302, which is a direct attack at the Free Speech clause of the First Amendment.
At a recent National Conference for Media Reform, sponsored by Free Press, a Massachusetts-based group heavily subsidized by [George] Soros, Hinchey laid bare his plan to silence conservative voices on television and radio. The anti-war McGovernite attacked Savage, Limbaugh and other conservative radio hosts, saying they were "responsible" for leading the U.S. into the Iraq war, as well as for preparing the ground for future military invasions of Iran and Syria. According to Hinchey, these men pose a “threat” to American national security. Hence, under his bill, they would be fired.
"All of that stuff will end," Hinchey said... In the Senate, the legislation is being supported by Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont. A self-styled “social democrat,” Sanders is forming a media caucus with the explicit goal of ending conservative hegemony on talk radio.
"Now is the time to begin asking that if networks provide their listeners with 99 percent of talk shows being with right-wing extremists, whether that really is what public trust is about," Sanders said in an address in January.
It is very clear that so called "liberals" only support speech that they like, and want to make any dissenting view illegal.
HT to Doug Ross.
Wednesday, May 02, 2007
Not democrat Senate Leader defeatocrat Harry Reid this time but, al Qaeda leaders including Sheikh Reidari, Abu Jonjalali al-Murthab, Rhadami Hillab Clintonijhad, and Waleed Jo Bidenami.
From Mind in the Qatar, we read the following:
Following the deaths of both Abu Musab Al-zaqawi and Abu Ayyub al-Masri, the decimation of the ranks of Al Qaeda in Iraq, and the growing unpopularity of foreign insurgents among Iraqis, some senior terrorists affiliated with Al Qaeda have called upon Usama Bin Laden to withdraw all of his troops from Iraq by October.
The war in Iraq "is lost" and Al Qaeda attacks are failing to bring an Islamic state to the country, spokesman of the Salafist Group for Preching and Combat, Harry Sheikh Reidari, said Thursday. "I believe ... that this war is lost, and continuing attacks are not accomplishing anything, as is shown by the extreme blows to our network in Iraq recently," Reidari told journalists. "Iraq has diverted resources from our greater 'War on Freedom'. It would be best if we withdrew, leaving only a small force to train Iraqi jihadists, and redeployed our other forces to Afghanistan to continue with a Holy War that everyone can support."
It certainly sounds like he is reading from the same script as Reid.
HT to the Confederate Yankee, who has more on the topic.
Cuban Historian Humberto Fontova, who escaped Castro's Cuba in 1961, has a book out that tells the truth about one of Castro's murdering thugs.
Exposing the Real Che Guevara: And the Useful Idiots Who Idolize Him
"...we live in a selectively infantilized culture where twentysomethings are children if they’re serving in the Third Infantry Division in Ramadi but grown-ups making rational choices if they drop to the broadloom in President Clinton’s Oval Office..." -- Mark Steyn
"Further, it would take one of those impossible coincidences that the Modern Liberal relies on so heavily to explain how it is that the two most religious nations in the Western World - the United States and Israel - are also arguably the world’s two most scientifically and technologically advanced. -- Evan Sayet
Truther: Someone who will believe anything but the truth. One born every minute. -- The New Devil's Dictionary
"The things that will destroy America are prosperity-at-any-price, peace-at-any- price, safety-first instead of duty-first, the love of soft living, and the get-rich-quick theory of life." - Republican President Theodore Roosevelt
You might be a democrat if you've ever referred to the Military/Industrial Complex during a conversation.
You might be a democrat if you've ever said "But look at all the good Ted Kennedy has done for the women of this country!"
"Frankly, I find it amusing that people cling to the ideal of pure socialism as a workable concept. It's like a replacement for religion." -- Todd Glenn
"I'm older than many of you, and actually lived in a commune during the hippie era. There is nothing like living in a commune to give you an industrial-strength understanding of the limits of "From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs." Not all the leeches are invertebrates." -- from a post to the venusenvycomic Yahoo Group, Feb. 2, 2003
You might be a liberal if you believe that hunters don't care about nature, but loony activists who've never been outside of Seattle do.
You might be a liberal if you believe that standardized tests are racist, but racial quotas and set-asides aren't. You might be a liberal (and most likely an idiot) if you believe that the only reason socialism hasn't worked anywhere it's been tried, is because the right people haven't been in charge.
"It isn't a fascist police state when you can publically call it one - unless you mean that term as a complement." -- Lisa Steele
"I guess in Berkeley people always want to say they value free speech and are the home of the free-speech movement, but it always seems people stop following that as soon as you say something they disagree with." -- Daily Cal editor-in-chief Janny Hu
"[I will] totally dismantle every intelligence agency in this country piece by piece, nail by nail, brick by brick" -- Ron Dellums, D-Calif, 1993, after House Democratic Caucus elected Dellums chairman of the House Armed Services Committee.
"Charlene, like all of her friends, couldn't handle issues. Issues meant disagreement. Voicing disagreement was a form of conflict. Conflict, acted out openly and publicly, was a male mode of social interaction - the foundation for patriarchal society which brought with it the usual litany of dreadful things." -- "Cryptonomicon"