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Hello.

Cat has camera on collar so we can see what he does
Topic: Miscellaneous 9:54 am EDT, Jun  8, 2007

From Boing Boing:

"Mr. Lee is a cat in Germany, whose owner has attached a camera to his collar so that we can share his daily adventures! Some of the photos are mysterious. Others are beautiful. I love this!"

Cat has camera on collar so we can see what he does


Bush Opens Europe Trip on Jarring Note
Topic: Current Events 11:09 pm EDT, Jun  4, 2007

Already complaining of being encircled by NATO's expansion, Putin said putting missile defenses on Russia's doorstep would ignite a new arms race. He threatened to retarget Russia's missiles toward Europe.

Bush says the anti-missile program is intended to protect Europe from states like Iran and North Korea, but Putin said neither country possesses the rockets the American system is intended to shoot down.

"It's a defense against something which does not exist," the Russian president said. "It would be funny if it was not so sad."

...

Not too worked up about this actually. Cold War Redux was pretty much a foregone conclusion once the US decided to set up permanent occupation in the Middle East. Russia and China are the new dynamic duo versus the USA. The wildcard becomes Japan's tradition of nuclear ambivalence changing overnight if the rhetoric gets too out of hand.

What I speculate about is the Pakistan factor. They are a tenuous ally at best. What happens if the next attempt on Musharraf's life is successful? You then have a very real nuclear power with the means to hit Europe and probably the motivation to threaten it.

I see the strategy in placing the anti-missile defense systems in Europe. Retargeting missiles is pretty much just reprogramming a computer. Takes relative moments. I don't believe the USA particularly cares about stopping Russia's missiles aimed at Europe because that won't happen, Russia is never going to fire them. This shield would be relatively successful against what the new players to intermediate and intercontinental range missiles could lob towards Europe though. Anyone with MERVs though are pretty much going to walk through an anti missile defense system.

This new showdown gives Russia face in the world, another step towards relevance after the thrashing the USSR received post breakdown. Bush and Putin get to play out their final years in power as sabre rattling opponents of the new Cold War. It's good for the defense business, this pony show. Russia gets to use it as an excuse to at first bootstrap their domestic arms industry as a state run enterprise. Once it is up and running, expect the foreign capital to flood in. Someone has to arm China, right? Easier to build and ship heavy armament from Russia (with love!), less resource intensive and quicker time to market.

Expect to see Bush and Putin on the golf course together in 2009 ala Clinton and Bush Sr.

Bush Opens Europe Trip on Jarring Note


'Hogzilla II' turning out to be a farm-raised hoax
Topic: Miscellaneous 6:00 pm EDT, Jun  4, 2007

By the time the news hit the wires, the kid already had a Web site, conveniently sponsored in part by Lost Creek Plantation, the 2,400-acre hunting area where he killed the pig. The site proclaimed that he had killed the largest hog ever for an 11-year-old and that a video was coming. I'm sure people will be buying the video and buying hunts at Lost Creek, which advertises preserve hog hunts for a $2 a pound trophy fee.

To get that big, though, the hog had to have been fed out in some way, not grown wild to a thousand pounds. By late in the week, an Alabama pig farmer came forward to say that the pig was his originally, and that it had been bought and placed in the enclosure just four days before the hunt. The boy's dad added a long disclaimer to the Web site, stating they never claimed it was a record pig, that killing the hog was still a great accomplishment and that nobody did anything wrong.

People have done worse for no money, of course, but this was wrong. They claimed it was a feral hog. It wasn't. They planned to sell videos, and the plantation planned to sell hunts for pigs that belonged in someone's barnyard. It's too orchestrated, whether it's illegal or not.

The truth, or what passes for it, continues to trickle out, and it just gets uglier. That's what happens when people start trying to make money off something like this or get onto television to crow about something like a world-record deer or an other-worldly largemouth bass.

'Hogzilla II' turning out to be a farm-raised hoax


Kraftwerk - Autobahn
Topic: Electronic Music 1:08 am EDT, Jun  1, 2007

Made in 1979!

Kraftwerk - Autobahn


RE: Apple hides account info in DRM-free music, too
Topic: Technology 12:32 am EDT, Jun  1, 2007

Decius wrote:

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

My mind sees a parallel in technique between this and the "lets purge Myspace of child sex offenders" thing. If someone is stupid enough to be a convicted child sex offender and registers at a social networking site with their real name, location, sex and age, they deserve to get purged. If someone is stupid enough to buy music from iTunes and not spoof this embedded contact info before they share it, they deserve any sort of repercussions that could from from later being identified.

None of this would hold water in court I'm afraid. Much too easy to spoof so I doubt anyone will get popped by the RIAA because of this. I think the theory postulated in the article is correct: This will be a way of examining that casual piracy effect, possibly a back channel way of examing social networks of music tastes.

RE: Apple hides account info in DRM-free music, too


RE: 988 fulton st. San Francisco, CA 94117 - Google Maps
Topic: Miscellaneous 10:22 am EDT, May 30, 2007

Decius wrote:
I can now see pictures of my old house on Google Maps. Not from above, but from the street. Its a bit trippy. It makes me miss my old neighborhood... In this picture is the window of my bedroom, which I looked out over my desk when I started working on MemeStreams.

Now if they could just emulate, ala 3D shooter style, the shady walk from Dataway to the yuppie oasis, that would turn my nostalgia engine :)

RE: 988 fulton st. San Francisco, CA 94117 - Google Maps


RE: YouTube - ABC of Sex Education for Trainable Persons (1975)
Topic: Society 12:27 pm EDT, May 27, 2007

Catonic wrote:
1970s film explaining how to teach "trainable persons" about sex. NSFW, of course (and you already clicked play, didn't you?)

20 minutes. Of course, I didn't watch all of it.

This is included on the DVD "The Educational Archives, Vol. 1 - Sex & Drugs." Lots of classic stuff on that DVD.

RE: YouTube - ABC of Sex Education for Trainable Persons (1975)


RE: Virtual Hallucinating Device Drives Police Insane for a Day
Topic: Technology 5:58 pm EDT, May 24, 2007

In one, you're riding a bus in which other riders appear and disappear, birds of prey claw at the windows, and voices hiss, "He's taking you back to the FBI!"

You mean, this doesn't happen for everyone else too? Shit!

RE: Virtual Hallucinating Device Drives Police Insane for a Day


Select transcript of Ron Paul's remarks on the Iraq war at the 5/15/07 Republican debate
Topic: Current Events 6:45 pm EDT, May 16, 2007

Ron Paul's statements during the debate are being twisted by the major media in an attempt to put words in his mouth. Most of the spin is that Rep. Paul suggests that America invited the 9/11 attacks.

I've excerpted the Q&A below. Most of the articles I've seen do not quote the entirety of Rep. Paul's statements nor the context.

I did not interpret this as him saying America invited 9/11, so much as that our foreign policy inevitably leads to blowback.

...

MR. WALLACE: Congressman Paul, you're one of six House Republicans who back in 2002 voted against authorizing President Bush to use force in Iraq.

REP. PAUL: Right.

MR. WALLACE: Now you say we should pull our troops out. A recent poll found that 77 percent of Republicans disapprove of the idea of setting a timetable for withdrawal. Are you running for the nomination of the wrong party? (Scattered laughter.)

REP. PAUL: But you have to realize that the base of the Republican Party shrunk last year because of the war issue. So that percentage represents less people. If you look at 65 to 70 percent of the American people, they want us out of there. They want the war over.

In 19- -- 2002, I offerer an amendment to International Relations to declare war, up or down, and it was -- nobody voted for the war. And my argument there was, if we want to go to war, and if we should go to war, the Congress should declare it. We don't go to war like we did in Vietnam and Korea, because the wars never end. And I argued the case and made the point that it would be a quagmire if we go in.

Ronald Reagan in 1983 sent Marines into Lebanon, and he said he would never turn tail and run. A few months later, the Marines were killed, 241 were killed, and the Marines were taken out. And Reagan addressed this subject in his memoirs. And he says, "I said I would never turn tail and run." He says, "But I never realized the irrationality of Middle Eastern politics," and he changed his policy there.

We need the courage of a Ronald Reagan.

...

MR. GOLER: Congressman Paul, I believe you are the only man on the stage who opposes the war in Iraq, who would bring the troops home as quickly as -- almost immediately, sir. Are you out of step with your party? Is your party out of step with the rest of the world? If either of those is the case, why are you seeking its nomination?

REP. PAUL: Well, I think the party has lost its way, because the conservative wing of the Republican Party always advocated a noninterventionist foreign policy.

Senator Robert Taft didn't even want to be in NATO. George Bush won the election in the year 2000 campaigning on a humble foreign policy -- no nation-building, no policing of the world. Republicans were elected to end the Korean War. The Republicans were elected to end the Vietnam War. There's a strong tradition of being anti-war in the Republican party. It is the consti... [ Read More (0.4k in body) ]

Select transcript of Ron Paul's remarks on the Iraq war at the 5/15/07 Republican debate


RE: No Straw Men: How Rudy Will Make GWB Look Good
Topic: Politics and Law 4:01 pm EDT, May 14, 2007

Decius wrote:

Hijexx wrote:
I'm supporting Ron Paul's campaign.

Do you support getting rid of the federal reserve bank and putting the United States back on the gold standard?

I don't really believe in the gold standard. Gold is a commodity that is just as subject to price fluctuation as any other commodity. Gold has no intrinsic value, and money does not derive its value from scarcity. You fall into the same situation of someone's opinion of what gold is worth as you would a fiat currency.

Entries in a computer account for most money these days. Those zeroes and ones are a form of commidity if you will. Somebody is at the switch of all of this, creating new entries into the pool of available accounting entries to go around.

That form of centralized control is a good thing in my eyes ONLY if it is transparent. The Federal Reserve, in choosing to stop publishing M3 currency stats last year, took a huge step backwards in accountability. The picture of how much currency is being printed got a lot less clear after that move. When we can't clearly see how many dollars are chasing how many goods, you can't really peg how much your currency is appreciating or depreciating.

I'd feel a lot better if there was some reform at the Fed. I never really understood why the US government lets a private banking cartel run its monetary system. Why not abolish the Fed and let the US issue its own money? I don't believe in getting rid of centralized control of the currency per se, but it needs to be 100% transparent. Every dollar that is ever created needs to be accountable and all of that information should be available to the market. To me, that is "sound money."

I am also no fan of fractional-reserve banking. Ever stopped and asked yourself, why does the FDIC only insure deposits in a commercial bank up to $100,000? Then did you ever ask, why is a private corporation the one that insures my deposit? Then asked, why does my country's currency need to be insured by a private corporation? Which leads inevitably to the question, why does my country not issue its own money?

Our monetary system is definitely fishy to me, but getting back to your questions: "Yes, no."

RE: No Straw Men: How Rudy Will Make GWB Look Good


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