Yes we cannibals

Sarah’s latest post reminded me of the stubborn, irreconcilable divergence between communitarian and individualist thinking. While it is a recurrent topic here, I’m afraid that it’s not much of a political winner, because even though Republicans are more individualistic and Democrats more communitarian, politics inherently lends itself to communitarian “we” style arguments (which means that […]

Wild Wild Webs

*As usual I was living in a parallel universe — actually four of them at the time — so I didn’t realize this post could/should probably be echoed here as well.  It is up at According To Hoyt and Mad Genius Club.* This last weekend I saw no less than two posts, both by people […]

Newsflash! Not everything is ugly!

In light of the constant stream of ugliness into which I seem duty-bound to wallow, it’s nice to have a reminder that not everything is ugly. Especially this time of year. A black-capped chickadee couple has decided to build a nest in a funky-chic handmade decorative birdhouse hanging only eighteen inches away from the back door […]

No, TNR, Mitt’s No More Keynesian Than Obama Is Kenyan

This is pretty dumb, even for TNR. Of course no one is talking about cutting $1T off the 2012 federal budget for 2013 — that would be a 30% cut in one year! Not even Rand Paul is considering cuts that large, to say nothing of Paul Ryan’s more centrist plan. And yes, it is […]

Computer History

I was looking around for other stuff and came across a page of Computer History Videos. Which brought me to the below video. I was a CACHE Club member and knew Randy and Ward well. They used an I/O board I designed (The Master I/O) in the World’s First BBS. I was over to Randy’s […]

Interview With A Starship Engineer

Astronomy Magazine has an interview with a starship engineer. Here is a short excerpt: When one studies the history of robotic expansion from Earth and compares it to humans, the former trends towards medium growth, exponential expansion speed, whereas the latter is at best low growth, exponential expansion speed and at worst linear. Our robotic […]

If they can SWAT free speech, our freedom is gone

Until a few days ago (when my computer was having some downtime and I was blogging erratically), I had never heard of Brett Kimberlin. (Just what he and the powers that be at Wikipedia want.) I have now read more about him than I care to read, and not only do I have a creepy […]

15 is better than zero

As someone who complains frequently about out-of-control government, and armed bureaucrats conducting raids, I read with avid interest an article by Mike Riggs about 15 Republicans who backed an amendment by Senator Rand Paul that would have slowed the FDA’s war on farmers by preventing them from carrying firearms and making warrantless arrests. Noting that every […]

Happy Memorial Day! But please remember…

While for most people today is a time to have fun, it is also important to remember the purpose: to honor those who fought and died to preserve the freedoms we not only take for granted, but which some of us are so willing to abandon. Not to be confused with Veterans Day, this day […]

whose time is it?

A commenter to my post about drive transplantation asked what I think is a good question: Every time I read stories like this one I wonder: do you value your time at all? How many hours have you burned using obsolete equipment? Hmm… The same question could be asked about forcing my aging body to […]

Beware the xulcache.jar!

A nasty virus infected me because I clicked on a link which was sent to me through a local political organization. I knew the sender and the group, and I did no more than go there. It was obvious spam, so I posted the group thusly: I have anything against legitimate Ukrainian businesses, but personally, […]

Overcome by blue screens of death

A heart transplant surgeon I am not. And, pain in the ass as it was, I have finally finished the final sutures on a difficult hard drive transplant. My main computer (a Pentium 4 on a Dell Optiplex 5100 motherboard which won’t even accept a Pentium D) has become so out of date that I […]

Another good argument against SWAT teams

Here’s a tactic I hadn’t heard about before but which doesn’t surprise me. SWATting is a particularly dangerous hoax in which a caller, generally a computer hacker, calls a police department to report a shooting at the home of his enemy. The caller will place this call to the police department’s business line, using Skype […]

I can’t break with what I never agreed with

Writer Michael Fumento explains why he is “breaking with the extreme right.” The right didn’t create this reservoir of fear, anger and hate. But it has both tapped into it and roiled it. Indeed, the right-wing mass hysteria is what sociologists call a “moral panic.” It occurs when a society is undergoing a wrenching transformation. […]

A bone to pick!

Coco has a brand new bone. It’s made of aluminum, so she can’t eat it, but I hope she appreciates it, as I spent all day working on it, and finally cut it out with a shape cutter. You think I’m kidding? Check out my third reworked drawing: And after that I had to enter […]

Enjoy nature!

What would make a snake try to swallow a frog far too large? And what would make the frog commandeer the snake when only its head was sticking out from the snakes mouth? Global warming? I don’t think so, although that seems to be the pat answer these days for any natural (meaning non-human…) occurrence in any […]

Support from the 1%?

I’ve just been reading about a brilliant con artist, serial litigant, and famous bomber who strikes me as a textbook example of a pure psychopath, and as typifies such types, there are too many details for me to process at this late hour. That there are people like this is not surprising. What I’d like to know […]

The telltale red stain of green?

There’s an old saying that you are what you eat. How true that is, I don’t know. But earlier tonight, I enjoyed a salad tossed with lovely wooden salad tossing forks, and while this wouldn’t have been a big deal by itself, something odd happened. I put the salad bowl and the salad tossers into […]

Civics lesson

This is amazing. In a linked video, an obviously incompetent teacher bellows “You will not disrespect the president of the United States in this class!” after students asked questions about Obama’s admission that he bullied a girl in high school in response to the teacher bringing up what she called a “fact of the day” — […]

First Birther?

I have never believed that Barack Obama was born in Kenya, and have written countless posts to that effect. But what I find even more unbelievable than the unsubstantiated assertion that Obama was born in Kenya is that the same assertion appears either to have been made by Barack Obama himself or at least endorsed by him. […]