Thursday, September 27, 2007

Nine reported dead in Myanmar crackdown

Nine reported dead in Myanmar crackdown YANGON, Myanmar (CNN) -- "Soldiers reportedly fired into crowds and beat Buddhist monks Thursday, and state media said nine people were killed as Myanmar's military rulers continued its crackdown on anti-government demonstrations."
Additional information at U.S. freezes assets, restricts travel of Myanmar junta and Burma's Agony.

More fun in Southeast Asia. In September last year it was Thailand. In December it was Fuji. Then January of this year Somalia took it's turn. Now it's Myanmar (Burma) playing the junta game.

I would like to have everyone protesting against the Middle East policies to read what is happing in other parts of the world. Yes, we needs to get out of Iraq as soon as reasonably possible. And, as anyone with any reason will tell you, that will be when Iraq is self sustaining.

But the primary point is that those who are complaining about our Government should fall on their knees and thank whatever deity they wish for the fact that we live in the US. How many times has South America seen military takeovers of countries? How many times have there been in Africa? Asia? Everywhere?

People in the US are so blinded by their self-righteous self-importance they have no idea what is happening in the real world. They only care about their back yard. There's a catchphrase, "Think globally, act locally." But no one ever really thinks outside the ten square feet they occupy on the planet. How can there be piece if nobody gives a shit about anyone but themselves?

Friday, September 21, 2007

Judge overturns portion of PATRIOT Act

Judge overturns portion of PATRIOT Act Published: 2007-09-07 - "A Manhattan federal court judge ruled on Thursday that an anti-terrorism tool, known as a National Security Letter, cannot require that recipients remain mum on the existence of such requests without posing significant constitutional problems.

In a 106-page ruling, U.S. District Court Judge Victor Marrero stated the despite recent changes to the USA PATRIOT Act to further restrict the use of National Security Letters (NSLs) with accompanying gag orders, the prior restraint on speech violates the First Amendment to the Constitution. The judge worried that the government had removed the burden from law-enforcement officers to justify to the courts the use of the gag provision of a National Security Letter and eliminated the checks-and-balances that judicial oversight would allow.
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I had a scathing entry for this the day after it was published but the stupid blog software ate it. Oh well, them's the ways. I'll see if I can scathe again today.

The times we live in are scary. Not only do we have moronic insane idiots running around bombing things and crashing planes, we have to endure what can only be laughing called our political leaders. There's so many people "on the left" trying to "stop the war" while the same number of people "on the right" who are "making the world safe." Safe for whom? Is Al Qaeda a danger to the whole world? Yes. Is what we're doing in Iraq right or wrong? Who knows. Our "political leaders, along with the various groups backing them, are doing enough damage to our own country it would be a miracle if Iraq ever became a self sustaining nation.

Notice I'm not picking sides in this debate. That is because I really dislike the two political parties running our government. The Republicans are wrong in so many ways but the Democrats are stupid fools who haven't a clue what's happening in the real world.

So what does all this have to do with the PATRIOT Act? More than you can imagine. When this act was put into service I remember feeling very 1984'ish. Couple that with the establishment of the Division of Homeland Security... That only makes me think of the Ministry of Home Defense. Anyone remember the old Soviet Union? How about North Korea? Maybe take a small trip down history lane and check out the titles that the Nazi regime used. It might be enlightening.

Benjamin Franklin said it best... "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

The three branches of US government are all so screwed up it's a wonder any of us are still alive.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

New Functionality: BlogRush

I just added this little baby to the sidebar. You can see it right under the "About Me" part. This looks like it could be a really nice tool. It basically works to drive more viewers to your blog. Just go to the site and see the video they have explaining the project. There's a bazillion way to bring people to your blog but this one looks like it will work nicely without any extra effort for the blogger. So go check it out. It couldn't hurt, huh?

BlogRush

Monday, September 10, 2007

HSM's Vanessa Apologizes for Baring All

HSM's Vanessa Apologizes for Baring All by Natalie Finn Fri, 7 Sep 2007 04:44:32 PM PDT - It's one thing to be watched by 250 million people around the globe. It's quite another thing to be the latest X-rated Internet star. Vanessa Hudgens apologized Friday for posing in various states of undress, including completely naked, for pictures that found their way online this week, a day after confirming the shots in question were indeed of her, and not doctored in any way. "I want to apologize to my fans, whose support and trust mean the world to me," the 18-year-old High School Musical star said in a statement to E! News. "I am embarrassed over this situation and regret having ever taken these photos. I am thankful for the support of my family and friends."

Ah, the joys of teen celebrity. And the folly of teen Internet usage. How many people have taken pictures of themselves in provocative or nude poses? Or maybe drunken goof ball pictures in your frat days? Yeah, I mean you. Well the vast majority of my images were taken long before the 'Net became usable by those other than the elite (1337) few. There are some pictures that exist "out there" in the digital world that are likely floating around in the nether regions. If anyone were to find them I wouldn't give a frell. I'm a nobody going nowhere so who cares. But in this day and age it would be wise to teach people that anything which rides the TCP/IP stream is potentially open to anyone and everyone in the world.

In the end, though, I'd like to say that while the press is lumping Miss Hudgens in with Britney Spears, Paris Hilton and Lindsey Lohan, I don't think she is anything like the typical party girl of their ilk. But time will tell.

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Thursday, September 06, 2007

Just another Thursday?

It would be but for one thing, it's my fathers birthday. He would have been 76 today. It's been six-and-a-half years since he passed away. The other day my son said, "I miss Papap." I replied, "So do I, honey."

I should start writing down all the stories I have about him, before my brain isn't able to keep them accessible. There's some really great stuff. The biggest problem I have is that I seem to remember things only when I'm regaling a group or during conversations. If only the damned meds and pain didn't zap my cognitive'ness.