You think governments work for the people? You think they couldn't possibly care more about big business than you? I'm sure a lot of people have already seen this link because it was on Fark earlier, but here's the gist of it (full link):

World Heath Organization [WHO]: Our studies are clear that cola and soda pop is unhealthy and excess consumption can lead to obesity.

Coca-Cola and PepsiCo (to Bush administration): Here's a few million dollars to help all your good work.

US Department of Health and Human Services (to WHO): Why that's preposterous! There is no evidence linking high sugar intake and obesity! We support Pepsi and Coca-Cola in their push to make sure that school children have the right to not just drink pop with lunch, but also during class*.

The American People: Good to know, we'll keep drinking this liquid candy! That's why we're so thin and athletic!

300,000** people died in America in 2000 from obesity related causes. It's worth taking seriously that the government is not just willing to ignore these issues, but to actively fight to make them worse when paid to. Realize something: this is not a government for the People, by the People. This is a mercenary force that has taken over the White House that has made it clear over and over that they work for the highest bidder, no matter what the outcome is.

Rachel (paintball maniac) and Rob just headed in to Belleville to pick up a gun for Rob and for Jon (Rachel and I already have some)… So yes, if you come to the New Years BBQ the following events are planned for inclusion:

  • Paintball tournament of sorts (bring your paintball gun!)
  • ATV jousting
  • FIREWORKS GALORE (enough to shame July 1st BBQs I hope)
  • Giant bonfire
  • A couple kegs of beer***

I still want to try and see if I can find an outdoor hottub to rent… That would be a lot of fun.

Anyway, a pile of people have been sending me messages not so much to thank me for adding spellcheck to the forums, but to ask me to add it to the IM system as well. Here's the deal: adding it to the IM system is more complicated, since it has to parse out reply lines as well as UBB and all that. In addition, I work for tips. Not a single person has donated via PayPal regarding the spellchecker (the last donation was almost two weeks before I added that)… So… If you want to have a say in what order features get added, feel free to say “PS. I'd really love spellcheck on IMs” or “Please turn custom layout on” if and when you throw a quarter in the hat.

I should say that I don't mind if people don't donate — it's not at all a requirement of using IAM, and I absolutely do not expect everyone to do it or anything like that. So don't feel bad if you haven't donated financially. Anyway, the BME experience update is uploading now with about 150 new experiences. I'll make a quick post again when it's there.

* In all seriousness, the big beverage and fast food companies have done this. They force schools into exclusive contracts where the schools guarantee volume in order to get “good” prices. When the schools can't meet these quotas, the companies then force the schools to allow students access to their products during class. For an excellent overview of how these tactics work, read Fast Food Nation.

** Why do we find it easy to ignore 300,000 deaths in one place, but feel absolute outrage when 3,000 die dramatically? Fat folks don't make for good TV unless they're funny fat folks? Do we have some free-will delusion that “it's their fault, after all they were eating” even though many became physically and mentally addicted AS CHILDREN?

*** I found out the local microbrew sells custom beer for half the price of the Beer Store, so I've put “keg fridge” on my Christmas List (fingers-crossed). If Santa brings me one, I'll always have high quality fresh unpasturized beer on tap.

Wow Shannon, that's really annoying! What is it, 1997 on Geocities? Retroweb is NOT cool!

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