Monthly Archives: September 2003

News entry

Re-read this schedule of Bush's day on 9/11, and look at the times for when the planes were known to be hijacked (more). Then take a look at this map (more), showing that the planes flight path took them over multiple military bases. Feel free to ask yourself why no one bothered to do anything.

This article on the “history” of the Iraq war, as told using the words of Bush administration is pretty funny in a morbid sort of way (more). Here are some excerpts:

We were defending both ourselves and the safety and survival of civilization itself. It was a struggle between good and it was a struggle between evil.

Iraq possessed ballistic missiles with a likely range of hundreds of miles ... and a growing fleet of manned and unmanned aerial vehicles that could be used to disperse chemical or biological weapons across broad areas. They were six months away from developing a [nuclear] weapon.

We waged a war to save civilization itself. It was entirely possible that in Iraq you had the most pro-American population that could be found anywhere in the Arab world. We had the overwhelming support of the Iraqi people. Once we won, we got great support from everywhere.

We do not leave behind occupying armies. The United States was not interested in the oil in that region. We found the weapons of mass destruction. We found biological laboratories. And we found more weapons as time went on.

It's weird seeing so many lies all in one place. And it's crazy — everyone that's not insanely ignorant knows they're lies, but they still keep getting told over and over. Bush even had the gall to say them at the UN (more, more). I can only assume the speech wasn't actually for the UN, but simply to provide quotes for FoxNEWS to play to the sheep (as they're lead to slaughter).

But don't worry — war's big business, so the lies must be worth it, right? After all, the US is the world's biggest arms dealer (more), having sold $13.3 billion worth last year. “Lucky” for 9/11 for them, as it upped their sales by over a billion dollars in the following year.

Hypothetical question time:

Would you kill a stranger for $300,000? What if you didn't have to do it yourself, if you just had to "OK" it by inaction?

If the answer is yes, then would you kill 3000 people for $1,200,000,000? That's how much profit the defense sector (one of the most powerful in the Bush administration) made internationally from the 9/11 attacks — and that doesn't include the many billions more made domestically.

If the answer is no, ask yourself what someone who already sells weapons and mercenary services (ie. money for killing) would answer.

At the start of the week Bush pushed through a bunch more legislation to make it easier for “faith based” groups to get cash grants (more), including Sun Myung Moon's anti-semitic (“the holocaust was God's revenge for killing Jesus”), homophobic (“dung-eating dogs”), and sexist (“[American women are] a line of prostitutes”) church. The funds specifically will be for “afterschool celibacy clubs” (more), and the promotion of boring sex after marriage (more). Continuing in the “stupid new laws” category, if you buy a Hummer H2 for $62,000, you will now be getting…. a $62,000 tax deduction! (more). If you're wondering why it just applies to the H2 and not other SUVs, it's because the H2 is so heavy that it's not even really considered an SUV any more…

Finally, as Amnesty International decries US treatment of POWs and others and accuses them of undermining international humanitarian law (more), the US clears its troops of any wrongdoing in the slaying of Iraqi police (more)… And chugging along in the background, Rumsfeld continues the slow process of destroying the US military (more). Want to see the result of his actions?

Say hello to Pfc. Alan Jermaine Lewis who says he's killed many Iraqis and has no complaints (“I love what I do. There's no other job like it. They give you guns.”). But not everyone is so happy about losing their legs (more, more), and even less people are thrilled about their kids getting killed (more).

It's the return…

I just ordered a JK Audio Inline Patch for the new BMEradio… So you can expect that to come back online soon, and it will be live this time — I'll hopefully be taking call-ins as well so that should be fun. Oh, and below is my current workspace. There's still another machine and three more monitors to add. The left two monitors are the portable aspect that can run BME from the road… The rest are “docking station”.

Typical response…

When people send in blurry pictures, low-resolution pictures, and so on, they get a reply explaining to them why the image was turned down, as well as what they can do to fix it. Recently the following image was submitted:

In this case, the person forgot to press “Macro” mode on their camera, so they got an email back letting them know how to do so. The weird thing is that 90% of people don't bother to retake the picture — they just freak out instead:


Wah wah wah.

Hmm…. Maybe eliminating the concept of failure from schools (in many areas teachers are no longer allowed to fail students or give out bad grades except in extreme cases) was a bad idea? More and more I seem to be seeing people who are convinced they're doing an amazing job, or are the smartest cookie on the block, without anything credible to back up their claims.

It all comes back to stupidity being good for business I guess.

Hey hey

First, thanks to all that are helping me out with the cellphone thing. The only thing that will take some fiddling is getting the photos from Sprint PCS Vision phones, since they're sent as a funny embedded hyperlink (it's not hard to do, just something new), as well as stripping out all the different footers and other superfluous stuff inserted by the providers.

Below is the present that I got Rachel… It may not seem like a big deal but it's the first car I've gotten anyone that isn't secretly a present for me. I'm primarily into sportscars; SUVs aren't my thing unless they're cartoonish monster trucks — anyway, so those that know me well know this is a real gift.

It's a VW Toureg of course, V8 model, and it has the “convenience package” which is a weird set of “keyless” (the key has a transponder so it just has to be in your pocket) entry features, the “winter package” which means that everything is heated, and the nav system as well… That's kind of geeky cool at least. I think it's 310 HP so it's not bad for passing and so on as well.

I'm sure many of you saw that both and shut down their anti-spam services due to massive DDOS attacks and so on from pro-spam vigilantes. Anyway, they complain that they've:

...been the targets of 12,000+ bounced emails, Several hundred abuse complaints, and numerous threats against our selves, our servers, and our Internet connection.

Now, I'm not going to say that doesn't suck — it truly does. I get about 14,000 spams per day, probably about 4,000 bounced emails, and have regularly faced both threats on the server and threats on myself for running BME. BME is under pretty much constant DDOS attack; for years we've been running custom firewall software to detect and actively shut down these attacks. The last massive one started last night at 2:41 AM (that's when our software detected it anyway), and we had it shut down by about 3:19 AM. Those come probably on average of twice a day.

PS. I assume everyone knows this — most of the world knew it before the aggression — but report after report continues to state that Iraq had no WMDs. Oops. Sorry about all the killing.

Where I'm at…

OK, I'll fill in a few blanks a la mi vida loca. As the pictures probably make clear to anyone who's been there I was in Hawaii (hence the constant interrogation and security searches) — on Maui. It's a neat place and quite pretty, although I have to admit that I think I liked the people in the Caribbean more and I'm not sure if I liked the dichotomy of America and Islander.

The day we were about to sign a lease, we got confirmation that I'd just inherited a 550 acre waterfront farm in Ontario (worth anywhere between $500,000 and $2 million!), so we came back to deal with the courts on that. However, it's not actually the byproduct of a death, but a court battle, so there's still some uncertainty in all of that… It's definitely possible that it falls through. So who knows where we'll be in a year. We may be back on a tropical island, or maybe even elsewhere. I've got the paperwork to get my EU (German) passport back in order, so because of our wide range of joint citizenships we have a lot of options.

The other reason I'm doing that paperwork is the crashing of the US economy. Personally I think it's going to recover, but as the Euro potentially starts to become the dominant world currency it's increasingly important that I can move fluently in that world as a native. My businesses have taken fairly significant hits due to being US-based, so it's my “Plan B” I suppose.