26 February 2004

John Kerry Can Burn in Hell

Kerry was in Vietnam.
The Kerry committee's final report, issued in January 1993, delivered the ultimate insult to history. The 1,223-page document said there was "no compelling evidence that proves" there is anyone still in captivity. As for the primary investigative question ?what happened to the men left behind in 1973?the report conceded only that there is "evidence . . . that indicates the possibility of survival, at least for a small number" of prisoners 31 years ago, after Hanoi released the 591 P.O.W.'s it had admitted to.

With these word games, the committee report buried the issue?and the men.


He basically left his comrades, the men that swore to die for each other, behind. What an ass. The author of this article certainly did his research.

Link

25 February 2004

The Book Group

Has anyone in the States ever heard of this?

The Book Group (via ..:peacedividend:..>

Casshern - Japanese movie

If anyone sees this come to America or sees a Region 1 DVD, PLEASE let me know. I don't understand a word of Japanese, but this looks visually incredible.

Link (via BoingBoing)

Diversity means an end to the Welfare State?

Two part article on the Guardian about how the influx of diverse peoples into the homogenous culture in Britian has resulted in a "progrssive dilmena"

It was the Conservative [British] politician David Willetts who drew my attention to the "progressive dilemma". Speaking at a roundtable on welfare reform, he said: "The basis on which you can extract large sums of money in tax and pay it out in benefits is that most people think the recipients are people like themselves, facing difficulties that they themselves could face. If values become more diverse, if lifestyles become more differentiated, then it becomes more difficult to sustain the legitimacy of a universal risk-pooling welfare state. People ask: 'Why should I pay for them when they are doing things that I wouldn't do?' This is America versus Sweden. You can have a Swedish welfare state provided that you are a homogeneous society with intensely shared values. In the United States you have a very diverse, individualistic society where people feel fewer obligations to fellow citizens. Progressives want diversity, but they thereby undermine part of the moral consensus on which a large welfare state rests."


Part 1, Part 2 (via Fark)

Alton Brown as Doc Hittori

I saw the USA version of Iron Chef USA. Please God, please, don't let this version be this camp.

Link

24 February 2004

16 Points on Outsourcing

Interesting reading. Tom Peters posted 16 observations about outsourcing and the new global economy.

His conclusion: we need to train many, many more creative, risk-taking entrepreneurs. That will require a massive shift in how we educate our youth. The only reliable indicator of whether you will be an entrepreneur: you are the son or daughter of an entrepreneur. If that skillset can't be transferred more generally, most people will be left behind.


Link (via John Robb)

WOOD TV 8, You Have Embarrassed this State Yet Again

Must have been a slow news day. Good for you TV 8; nothing like bringing more shame and negative press to the area.

Link

23 February 2004

Elections, elections, elections

This article from the O'Reilly Network is a nice, short read why Ralph Nadar's run for President is more important than a Democrat winning the election.

I find it both amazing and unsurprising that the number one response to Nader's entry is not about his ideas and whether they're any good. It's about how his entry impacts the (mostly imaginary) horse race.


Link

19 February 2004

In defense of cynicism

The importance of cynicism is not just that it's true. It's that recognising human selfishness gives us a chance to do something about it.


Link

18 February 2004

India's New Loos Save Lives

I knew about the caste system in India, but I had no idea it was so depraved. And still in action. A Christian Science Monitor story details the Balmikis, or scavengers, who subsist by carrying away, by hand, the body waste of higher castes.

From the story:
"It is one of the astounding contradictions of modern India, and a fact notably missing from the ruling party's current feel-good ad campaign, that this "inhuman" practice continues even today. At a time when growing numbers of urban and even rural Indians own mobile phones and drive expensive foreign cars, where Indian software engineers are busy creating the "next big thing," and where Indian rocket scientists today are planning a joint US-Indian mission to the moon, more than three quarters of the nation's citizens live without access to a simple toilet."


Link

No more "Walk"/"No Walk" Signs in NYC

Does anyone else find this sad? Not in a nostalgic way, but the fact that as a society we're so lazy/uneducated/litigious that NYC found it necessary to remove all worded instructions from intersections?

Link

17 February 2004

Look Kids, Big Ben, Stonehenge...

Who was the poor soul that proposed this project; build a tunnel underneath Stonehenge. Coming soon, the Grand Canyon overpass.

Bonus points for anyone who gets the reference in the title.

Link

Sit Down and SHUT UP!

"It's a marvelous demonstration by liberals, if you will, of censorship. Now mind you, running for political office is every American's right. Running for political office means free-speech exercise; it means exercising the right of petition, the right of assembly. ... To say `Do not run' to anybody is to say, `Do not speak. Do not petition. Do not assemble. Remain silent.' That's just unacceptable, especially coming from people like the editors of The Nation."
- Ralph Nader, Feb. 4 on National Public Radio


Isn't this what they're spearing Bush et. al. about?

Link

11 February 2004

You Mean Detroit's a DUMP?!

The Freep (our favorite Detroit Free Press) has busted the Detroit 2006 Super Bowl committee for doctoring a photo of downtown in their ad. "Doctoring" is a nice term, considering the that they not only added lights to buildings that are abandoned, they actually put roofs back on collapsing buildings. Check out the comparison PDF.

My favorite quote? "It is a picture of the Detroit we hope to show in 2006," [Michelle Fusco, a spokeswoman for the Detroit Metro Convention and Visitors Bureau] said.

Right. Soon, they'll be importing hipsters to dress up downtown for the festivities.

10 February 2004

Woman hangs self during drug trial

While news that a 19-year-old killed herself is always tragic, the fact that this article has to then paint the event as tragic for a drug company, which incidentally may have been contributory in her death, is beyond my comprehension.

Or, it may have everything to do with the fact that said drug company is located in the same town as the newspaper?

Too Cool

Opportunity looks over the rim of the crater it is in and sees the plastic shield and parachute used during landing.

CNN Link

JPL Link

09 February 2004

What I'm Currently Reading

Kuro5shin hosts a story called The Metamorphosis of Prime Intellect, a trippy (sometimes stomach turning) theory about the future. It's not the best thing I've ever read, but the vision of this future-world is fascinating. It's written by Roger Williams.

Link

Celebrity Chef

While I may not be able to faithfully reproduce many of his recipes, he does make me laugh and, more importantly, experiment in the kitchen again. Who is he? Why, who else could it be but Alton Brown?

01 February 2004

Columbia Memorial Station

I should have highlighted the Spirit landing site as well, which has been named the Columbia Memorial Station after the crew of Space Shuttle Columbia. Spirit turned and took this picture of the landing site, which will remain in Gusev crater long past our lifetimes, a fitting memorial indeed.

Mars

In my travels around the net, it struck me today that, despite all the horrible things that occur in the world, we live in a pretty amazing time. Right now, as I type this on a machine that, when my parents were my age, was unimmaginable, two machines the size of golf carts are moving around another planet, controlled by a person in California. One of these was debugged from over 33,000,000 miles away.

Maybe there's hope for this species yet.