Monday, November 29, 2004

Recording Law Classes

It was rare for me to skip recording a class on my laptop and I remember as the term progressed I debated the merits of bothering with the hassle.

Today - I feel really, really, really smart for making digital recordings of my classes. Using Audacity, I can double or even triple the playback speed of past classes enabling me to quickly skim through the recordings for clues as to what the Prof was emphasizing.

If you take a laptop to class and are thinking of recording next term, check out Audacity. It exports/imports most formats (MP3, Ogg Vorbis, etc), is an open-source (free as in freedom) application and runs on everything from Linux to Windows.

Ashcroft & Bacon Sing The Gospel Blues

This is 100% for-real. John Ashcroft had an album out and is evidently a pretty good crooner.

I learned about it from HateGun.

Friday, November 26, 2004

Trying to Maintain Perspective on Law Finals

As finals approach I am, like most law students, consumed by the materials and compelled to cram all that is Year 1 / Term I of law school into my pea sized brain. The net result of such intense concentration and pressure is the potential to completely burn out. Once that stage is reached total apathy and eventual resignation isn’t far behind. To avoid such an event, I decided to take a few hours off today and see what was going on outside my world of law school and modest apartment living. It was a wise decision.

I headed over to East Lansing and wandered about the shopping district around campus. It is a place filled with good places to eat, drink and at least a half dozen interesting bookstores – and by the way – I love bookstores. Throw in a decent espresso bar and the aroma of ground coffee and I easily reach a satisfying plateau of peace. Hence, I found a few moments of peace and therefore the element was met…

After a couple hours of browsing books about Hitler, fascism, Python (the language), Linux (an operating system), and checking out the classical music section at B&N – it was time to head home.

Coming back to the books after getting some fresh air I realized that I, in fact, understood more about Criminal Law and Property than I first thought (or at least felt). There is often an overwhelming compulsion to study at this stage until ones eyes bleed, but in practice such exertion probably does more harm than good. Ten hours of intense study doesn’t always equate to ten useful hours. By taking a few hours off and doing something not related to law, it makes coming back to studying for finals a bit easier to digest.

Windows XP Upgrade Shuts Down 60,000 Desktops

Benefits system hit by IT chaos

80,000 staff affected in latest computer failure

Kevin Maguire
Friday November 26, 2004
The Guardian

Pension and benefit payments face disruption after what is being described as the biggest computer crash in government history left as many as 80,000 civil servants staring at blank screens and reverting to writing out giro cheques by hand in the latest blow to a hi-tech Whitehall revolution.

Also on Slashdot HERE.

Thursday, November 25, 2004

The Dollar - It Stinks.

The Loonie reached parity with the US Dollar not long after Black Tuesday. Today, the Dollar is getting (as always) whipped into the next big Latin American currency.

Technically, the Loonie is now worth more than the US Dollar in terms of purchasing power. I'm sure even Canadians are scratching their heads on this one. Books that used to say Price: US $19.95 / Canada $22.95... will soon be reversed.

Those Canadian coins we curse when we get them by accident up here in Michigan... well... soon it will be considered a sign of luck.

Thanks George Bush!

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Hitting The Wall Called Finals

I've definitely hit the wall. I am staring at my Contracts outline and worrying about Criminal Law and Property. I can't seem to wrap my mind around Property and am lame with Criminal Law. I also curse that I didn't bulk up on supplements, hornbooks, etc, the very first day. Actually - I just curse everything now...

I look at my notes, outlines and other blather and wonder - "Is this stuff really all in my head? If so, where did I put it up there, because I sure as hell can't seem to find any of it now."

To get around this wall I am doing practice exams, but frankly - I would rather be doing almost anything than law right now. I have become physically dizzy with this stuff, plus the heater is going out in my apartment, plus I'm sick with something, oh - and I live in Michigan. All of this makes for a recipe that will soon have me taking orders from my dog.

God, it's moments like these where I feel I could be sooooo happy with just some job out there in the world. But I know that's not true. It's a LIE. It's ALL LIES I TELL YOU! LIES! (What's that Fluffy? The rifle? Yes? Obey you...?)

Perhaps it's time for a beer. No wait. Maybe coffee would be better. How about both? Perfect - coffee and beer mixed together equals ... law school.

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

God Loves Irony

NASCAR, The Lord Jesus Christ, Guns and President Bush... oh - and don't forget Viagra!

(scroll to bottom of page - you'll see... look at the t-shirt... wonder if he knew... wonder what it means?)

Bummer they took down the White Power girl in front of the Confederate flag. That one said it all.

Interesting thing about Viagra... have you noticed it seems to be popular with Republicans (Bob Dole was first spokeman back in the 1990's)?

You Should Know Who David Hackworth Is

This is one of The Greats (as far as I'm concerned) of millitary men and he is still alive and kicking. No, he's not Patton, but he is like Patton in the sense he is the real-deal. A voice of millitary reason in an ever growing sea of idiots and ninkapoops and guys who spend too much time making PowerPoint presentations.

If I could ever have a wish granted of spending a day with my three all time (alive) favorite people - David Hackworth would rank first.

His latest article on (among other things) how the Secretary of Defense can't be bothered to cancel his squash game to sign the KIA letters.

More on Hackworth can be found here.

Canadian Bastards Post More Supluses! Those Liberal Idiots!

This just makes me sick. Why the hell can't Canadians get ANYTHING right??? They need to use ALL of their surplus capital to lower the crushing tax burden on the producers of their society, just like us - and get their act together to unleash the full benefits of capitalism! Power needs to be diverted into the hands of the few, not the many. Are all Canadians this stupid? (One can hope).

Don't worry Canada! Help is on the way! Bush is going to drop by (on or about November 30th) and give you some much needed advice. A $46 billion surplus in your EI fund? That's gotta hurt. That just screams incompetence.

OTTAWA - Auditor General Sheila Fraser has once again slammed Ottawa for running huge surpluses in the Employment Insurance fund.

Sunday, November 21, 2004

Are They SURE This Guy is a Republican?

In some ways the We're Not Sorry website is a pure laugh riot. I honest to God can't tell if it is for real-real, or if it is a parody, or maybe it is so dead on target that it is a parody of itself and doesn't know it. Whatever it is - it is definitely the opposite of the We're Sorry web site. While one is thoughtful, reflective and yet funny, the other is balls to the wall We'-re-Gonna-Kick-Your-Ass Blue State Commie hillarious.

I enjoy them both, but for different reasons.

Assuming this link still works and the picture is still there, check out the Happy Republican with the beer photo (it's the picture just after We Won! So Shut Up! picture with the American Flag backdrop). Notice anything? Ladies with grabby boyfriends - notice anything? Maybe it's just me.

Saturday, November 20, 2004

Sorry and Not Sorry

This site was formed to counter the We're Sorry website.

It's incredible. Not much on it (for some reason), but I'm sure that will change. This site speaks volumes. The contrast is ... impressive.

It's Like Cancer...

It's spreading everywhere - and fast. Fox news is opening up in Canada, and now THIS AS WELL...

Forget it. I think I'll go to Hungary with my dad and cousin.

Nicotine Dreams (the adventure continues...)

Had a vivid dream last night that I went to my criminal law class – with a slight hangover and something I couldn't get out of my eye. That was my dream – Crimlaw with a bad headache. The prospect of having to attend the same class TWICE in a single day definitely makes a grumpy law student - grumpier.

I also dreamed I was some sort of monastic / Jedi-ish dude looking for Skull and Bones clues in an old Southwest church, but I got lost in its various corridors and had a heck of a time finding my way to the street – where it started to rain and I caught a cab back to awake-land.

Before going to bed I try to program my mind to keep working on law school while I sleep (I feel guilty if I’m not doing law school 24/7). Apparently, I have some debugging work ahead of me…

Porn Evidently Just As Good As Crack!

If a Republican says porn is just as good as crack - you just KNOW it must be good'n hot!

I guess Karl Rove is ramping up the hot issue of 2006. God knows it won't be the economy, the wars (plural), the collapse of the Dollar, the inflation, the massive deficits... no. With marriage saved, Clarence Thomas as Chief Justice and abortion soon banned - what's left? Will Porn be the hotton button moral issue in 2006?

I can see it now...

ABC News Wire:

"Senator [name from blue state] hemmed and hawed denying that he was pro-pornography, and when asked if he had ever committed the crime of masterbation, announced he was in fact planning to fully support the President's new SPANK (Stop Porn America Naughty Kids) bill..."

New Elena Story

From Slashdot, just a repost here.

"Elena, of motorcycling through Chernobyl fame has gone riding again, this time to dig up the history of Kiev's fortifications. Interesting that after 60 years all that stuff is still there."

Ballmer and the revenge of the Jade penguin

Microsoft's Steve Ballmer has been warning Asian governments that Linux may infringe software patents. James Cagney, move over. There's a new hard man in town...

He couldn't have been a better gangster if he'd worn spats and carried a violin case. Steve "Monkey Boy" Ballmer was out talking to the East Side gangs, and they'd better listen. They'd better listen good.

Of Mice and Men...

A very interesting story on MSNBC about blending human and animal forms.

While Feeling Sorry...

I was looking at the "sorry" postings and came across this site:

Canadian Alternatives

If the New Zealand forms are too much fun, try Canada's...

Friday, November 19, 2004

What does law school make you do?

For starters – it makes you hate everything. If you are happy and filled with joy at this stage of law school, get away from me. You’re sick or I’m sick or we’re both sick. I do know for certain that one of us is sick and we don’t want to let a Finder of Fact make the final determination, because it means something went horribly wrong for one of us.

I have a headache that doesn’t stop. The Energizer Bunny is in my head beating that damn drum morning, noon and night. It’s just a constant throb and it makes me feel slightly nauseated not unlike being pregnant (an assumption on my part). I would probably feel less ticked if Cooley didn’t have a maximum of 2-missed classes and you’re out policy. Miss twice – bye. So I hold on to those aces until I really need them when I get (as always) the flu just before finals.

Why do law students claw and crawl our way through this mental hell? I honest to God do not know, but I’m sure there must be a good reason. I also know I am VERY lucky to be attending law school, but for some reason... I'm less enthusiastic than I probably should be.

What I do know, or remember, sort-of - is that it is important that I see this thing through. Like that bad movie with what’s his name, Ben Affleck, where he had his brain erased by that Bill Gates-like creepy guy, and only had a few clues in an envelope to piece his whole life back together. Kind of reminds me of law school. I know this is important, very important, and that’s it. The rest just doesn’t seem to fit, but I better hold on to these scraps of paper, the locker key and the bullet – because I might need these things one day… for something.

Not So Sure About Canada? Try New Zealand! It’s Warmer!

Canada IS kinda cold, but New Zealand seems warm enough even for Californians!

Seeing the potential in the results of Black Tuesday and the strong, burning, insatiable desire of some Americans to flee like hell - New Zealand created a special section for “United States Citizens” interested in becoming landed residents of New Zealand.

If you need a cathartic moment or just an excuse, any excuse, to avoid pounding law books in preparation for the hell that is finals – check out New Zealand website. Setting up an account to fill out forms, apply for immigration, and other good things, is free and can be conducted entirely online. I haven’t got to the part of actually paying to submit my application, but something tells me they take credit cards.

I wasted upwards of two whole hours distracting myself from Criminal Law and Property (I hate Property – hate it) by filling out the Expression of Interest form online. Instead of playing Spider Solitaire and KNOW you are wasting time, why not take a crack at the Expression of Interest form (it’s great fun) before Bush officially nominates Tom Delay as a Supreme Court Justice? Think of it as a tonic for the mind…

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Food For Thought

Things fall apart; the center cannot hold;

Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world, The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere The ceremony of innocence is drowned;

The best lack all conviction, while the worst Are full of passionate intensity

- William Butler Yeats

Installing Mandrake 10.1 into a VMware Virtual Machine

UPDATED 12-07-2004

Sorry fellow bloggers. This posting is for a few geek friends that are trying to shoehorn Mandrake 10.1 into a
VMware Virtual Machine on Windows XP host (although same probably goes for a Linux host as well).

Getting Mandrake 10.1 CE installed under VMware on a Windows host can be a bit tricky. Although the installation proceeds perfectly normal, getting video afterward that is beyond useful becomes much harder. If you are staring at a funky screen or perhaps an 800x600 256 color resolution, you'll need to install VMware tools and also make a few changes to one configuration file.

Before starting - it will help to boot into a normal VGA situation, otherwise you'll be trying to do work in a funky 4-screen strange looking frame buffer.

Reboot your newly install Mandrake machine and at the boot screen press the ESCAPE key and then type:

linux vga=normal (and obviously press return/enter)

Login as root and then type:

# init 3
# urpmi pciutils
# urpmi kernel-source-2.6-

Note that the kernel sources are required to install vmware-tools.

If URPMI complains during the above, make sure that your cdrom/dvd is mounted or selected by VMWARE in your machine configuration. If it is and it's still not seeing your cdrom/dvd, type:

# mount /dev/cdrom /mnt/cdrom

And then try urpmi pciutils, etc, again. Once you've installed your kernel sources and pciutils...

Go to the VM menu of VMware and choose Install VMware tools. Next...

# mount /dev/cdrom /mnt/cdrom
# cd /mnt/cdrom
# cp vmware-linux-tools.tar.gz /tmp
# cd /tmp
# tar -zxf vmware-linux-tools.tar.gz

#cd /tmp/vmware-tools-distrib/bin

You will next need to use a text editor of your choice, such as vi, joe, nano or maybe pico.

# vi

Then, find this bit of code... (if you are using vi and are a newbie, scroll down to around line 3051)

$xversionAll = direct_command(shell_string(xserver4()) . ' -version 2>&1') =~
/XFree86 Version (\d+\.\d+\.?\d*)/ ? $1: '0.0.0';

# The assumption here is that anything from is 4.4.0. We have to do this
# right now because 'X -version' on's server doesn't have a reliable version
# string. Maybe it will once it settles down.
if ($xversionAll eq "0.0.0") {
$xversionAll = direct_command(shell_string(xserver4()) . ' -version 2>&1') =~
/ Foundation/ ? '4.4.0' : '0.0.0';

Change the part...

$xversionAll = direct_command(shell_string(xserver4()) . ' -version 2>&1') =~
/XFree86 Version (\d+\.\d+\.?\d*)/ ? $1: '0.0.0';


$xversionAll = direct_command(shell_string(xserver4()) . ' -version 2>&1') =~
/XFree86 Version (\d+\.\d+\.?\d*)/ ? $1: '4.4.0';

Newbie VI note: to delete the '0.0.0' in the above text press the [DEL] key to enter delete mode and delete over the offending numbers. Press [INSERT] key to insert '4.4.0' then press [ESCAPE]; then type ':w!" to force a write and then ':q' to exit

Save the file after making the above edit.

THEN at the root prompt:

# cd ..
# ./

You can then just hit enter to everything and accept all of the defaults.

Once the module compiles, you'll be given a choice of screen resolutions to choose. In my case I use 1024x768, and odds are that will work best for most situations. After vmware-config is finished, go ahead and shutdown and reboot. Your video at that point should be normal.

Bible: New Pentateuch translation from original Hebrew meanings

LOS ANGELES, California (Reuters) -- It is considered the most magisterial opening in English literature: "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth."

But now a major revisionist translation of the Bible would have the cosmos begin with a more conversational clause: "When God began to create heaven and earth ... "

And where the King James translation of Genesis had the earth begin "without form and void," the new translation of the Hebrew Bible says that the earth was "welter and waste."

Biblical scholar Robert Alter's major new English translation of the first five books of the Hebrew Bible -- alternately called the Five Books of Moses, the Torah or Pentateuch -- has some critics manning the barricades while others are applauding his efforts to return the work to its original Hebrew meanings and majestic repetitions.

The Generals Speak

They evidently fail to understand that George Bush, Beloved Leader and The Commander of America, gets his insight and advice from Lord Jesus. Because George Bush follows and loves Lord Jesus, all this from stuff from the generals is either Satan working to over-intellectualize everything or a deception. Either way, all of these generals must be wrong.

The proof is in how well things are going in Iraq.

The Generals Speak.

Coup in North Korea

Saw this over the Squawk Box Headlines...

"[Buck Getting Lift From Rumor of N. Korean Coup] Boston, November 18: There have been some odd occurrences reported in North Korea the last few days like removal of portraits of Kim and the changing of his title from "Dear Leader". Talk is now circulating of a coup, but it may just be dealers putting two and two together."

Now, I know what you're thinking - George Bush is "Dear Leader", but you are mistaken. He is "Beloved Leader" - and likewise "The Commander"; two titles vs just one for Kim.

Lexx - Blow Up That Planet

My feelings about the November 2nd election might be summed up best this way...

HERE (Real)

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

I'm Ready To Join The Amish

From Slashdot...

California's budget problem has led the state to consider desperate measures: taxing you based on how much you drive. The only problem is the way they propose to do it. California is now proposing to put GPS devices on all new cars to track how far people drive and tax them accordingly."

Every bad law we've ever had in Arizona came from California. I'm past thinking that all this technology is bad - it's about to make life a complete hell from cradle to grave.

Nicotine Motivates

A strange upside to Nicotine is that it seems to have turned me into a blogging machine. Now, I just wish it could turn me into a voracious reader so I could plow through the hundreds of pages of outlines, law books, and other joyous law school materials I need to know by heart for upcoming final exams.

Hmmm. I wonder if Neurosis posted anymore cartoons/photos/sanity enhancers… no.... No.I. must.resist.distractions...I...must.resist.distractions... Get back to books. Yes. obey...

A Good Blog,

I think I'll add this one to my list.

And this Working Assets link I got from above also looks pretty good, and maybe even a way to save some money as well.

Revenge of The Sith

The story line and timing of this movie seem so strangely... appropriate.

Sorry World

We're so SORRY.

Got this link from a friend of mine at Whittier School of Law...

Why I Don't Like Microsoft; Why I Try Not To Use Their Products

I think Microsoft in so many ways represents everything that disgusts me about what is happening in this country - if not the world in general.

Here is a company (backed in large measure, not unlike SCO) that does one thing - it patents ideas. The real purpose of this is to stifle innovation and turn us into serfs on Bill Gates (and those like his ilk) plantation. Naturally, nothing will be done about in this country, but hopefully other nations will not cave so quickly. The Europeans haven't yet bent over for US demands, although odds are it is just a matter of time.

This story first appeared on Slashdot about a week ago, and now has made its way into the mostly useless so-called mainstream media. You'll need an extra Nicotine patch after reading it HERE.

UPDATE (Courtesy of Slashdot)

"Today Microsoft warned several Asian countries that using Linux could subject them to lawsuits, claiming that Linux violates '228 patents'. Apparently, Steve Ballmer believes he can enforce U.S. law in Asia." Ballmer is presumably speaking about this story. So, companies which sell insurance against lawsuits and companies which make competing products both warn of the dangers of using Linux. Maybe someone should point out that Microsoft is battling dozens of patent-infringement lawsuits itself, and any user of Microsoft software (including governments) could also be sued?

How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Love The Death of The Republic

"More than any other time in history, mankind faces a crossroads. One path leads to despair and utter hopelessness. The other, to total extinction. Let us pray we have the wisdom to choose correctly." -- Woody Allen, Without Feathers.

UPDATE: Walk through a currency trade here.

Trading with RefcoFX is one way to make money from the comfort of your own home and likewise it is a terrific way to send yourself into complete financial ruin within a fraction of a second. Currency trading is not for the faint of heart, but I find it a fascinating subject and thought I would post a brief article here about it.

A great time to have entered the market and started betting against the US Dollar was around August of 2000. Most currency traders were fairly certain Gore was going to lose and the market bet that Bush (the assumed winner) was (a) incompetent and (b) would run massive budget deficits and (c) the Dollar would weaken and potentially face an eventual collapse. While an actual collapse has yet to take place, the descent is starting to get breathtakingly steep. Market moves that used to take years now happen on an almost weekly basis, and this is scary as much as it is a time of opportunity. It also the delta between the wolves and the sheep – and I have always been inclined to try and be the former rather than the latter. The sheep in my opinion, by the way, are over in the equities market prepping for yet another fleecing. But I digress…

The risks in this game are in equal proportion to the level of opportunity and trading currencies are an even faster, more horrific way to lose your shirt than day trading. This means approach with caution – lots and lots of caution.

Refcofx makes it easy to “play” currency trader. If you are interested in trading currencies, or just want to learn about it in a hands-on kind of way, go HERE and then click on “Open Free Demo” account. They have a very-cool Windows based trading program that is a neat way to learn about what is taking place today in the world of currency exchanges, and the news program you can install with the program is worth the trouble of opening a demo account.

I personally believe the Dollar is going to have its share of ups and downs, but given the purges at the CIA and The State Department combined with the staffing up of incompetent Bush cronies across the board – the situation speaks for itself. Foreign governments are also between a rock and a hard place; a falling Dollar can hurt as well as help depending upon how events are managed. In that light, this means this type of investing is frought with horror and risk.

If you decide to dabble with a mini account that you can open with just $300 – plan on losing that $300 in a Las Vegas minute. This is serious stuff. It moves faster than a casino, but unlike gambling you are dealing with actual fundamentals rather than pure chance.

British Humor

I wish I would have thought of this at a company I once worked for...

Global Warming Lansing Style

It's 60 degrees outside and feels every bit of 70 (well, this is Michigan, hence cold feels like warmth and frigid sub zero feels like a slight chill).

Weather looks like its going to be more or less this way all week.

Who broke the weather machine? I bought boots, coats, gloves - the works in anticipation of the miserable existance that is called Michigan - and it turns out to be more like my home in Arizona?

Economic Depressions Are Not Funny: Dollar Continues Collapse

The Dollar falls again - today. Actually, it falls every day, but it looks like the action is picking up a bit. John Snow (some guy, works for Bush, I think they're called "cronies" now) issued another statement saying blah blah, and funny thing is that "because we say it is therefore true" stuff only works on Americans NOT thinking reasoning Europeans/Canadians/Asians.

I’ll try and IRAC through this for my law student bloggers given that exams are coming up: The issue is the Dollar and our economy going straight to hell.

The US Dollar is weak. Economic and foreign affairs policies brought courtesy of Republicans, George Bush and Wimp Democrats continue to pressure the currency downward assisted by record deficits thanks to incompetent fiscal management. The US trade and budget deficits are exceeeding a half-trillion dollars per-year respectively, and are approaching levels in relation to US GDP unseen since World War II. Because Republicans make decisions based on faith rather than reason or fact (Satan often tries to use facts and reason to trick people into losing their faith), the elements for a collapsing Dollar and economic meltdown are met.

I know. Lousy IRAC statement, but I haven’t had my coffee this morning and I feel more sardonic than usual.

Low and behold the truth comes at last to currency traders who now, slowly, are openly admitting that the Dollar’s collapse (and it is a collapse my friend – a real one, get your money OUT of here - now) is not only rooted in economic facts, but geopolitical ones as well i.e. we suck, we’re hated and everyone hopes/wishes we would just die. They're not going to buy Dollars every minute of the day anymore, especially when we keep throwing money down rat holes. America has been nuts for sometime, and became legally certified last November 2nd.

Naming Condi Rice didn’t fetch the same kind of headlines in the rest of the world as it did here, but Americans don’t get out much past Fox News and CNN to see the view from somewhere other than a White House Press Release. If they did, ah hell - they wouldn't believe it, so I guess it wouldn't make a bit of diference.

Still have doubts? KMart is buying Sears, and they're "celebrating" the fact that now Craftsman Tools can be sold along side popular brands like... Martha Stewart! Wow! These are the SAME brilliant minds that manage our economy, so what's not to like!?!

A Tiny Revolution

A great blog and worth following. Insight, stories, jokes and all the other trauma that comes with being a thinking person faced with exhile in your own country. Check it out HERE.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Another Surplus. What a Mess.

Those damn commie Canadians are having to wrestle with another surplus. Their version of Republicans want tax cuts for the wealthy (I guess because it works so well down here - monkey see monkey do), while others want to blow the money on healthcare, education, infrastructure - stupid stuff like that.

I sure wish our Socialist souless non-believing cousines to the north would get their act together.

Extegrity Exam Software

Our law school requires the purchase of a specific piece of software for taking exams. It functions akin to a basic featureless text editor that locks out every function of your computer – except for the operation of the exam program itself. It’s not a bad little program and does have some handy features – like a timer, a silent warning that can be set for different intervals (5 minutes, 10 minutes, etc) and the ability to do some very minor text editing.

I was unable to get the program to work in my Windows XP SP2 partition, and likewise suffered the same fate with a fresh installation of Windows XP in another partition. This program, at least in my case, does not seem to like the flavor or aspect of my particular laptop or Windows XP installation(s).

Figuring the problem might be the Service Pack 2, I went ahead and installed Windows 2000 on a separate partition and seemed to have it working on one single occasion, then after each subsequent attempt the program would complain that my computer failed the “Security Test” due to “Power Toy Task Switcher” – rather odd considering I was running Windows 2000 and no such power toy had been installed or even exists.

Figuring the program was complaining about the built-in task switcher (the thing you get when you type Alt-Tab) – I disabled in it the registry and rebooted for good measure. Still no joy – it lodged the same complaint and kicked me out of the program.

Feeling clever, I fired up my regular XP SP2 partition and attempted to use the program in VirtualPC in a virtual machine – it complained again, but gave me (what I later learned via email from the company) the super-secret “Error –501” message, or maybe it was –502, or –500. It was 500-hundred something, that much I know. It was also utterly useless information to me and the company wouldn’t tell me what it meant for “security reasons.” Oh-kaaay….

My instincts told me this is/was probably a dos-ish / Windows 9x based program and needs a totally, 100% useless, insecure operating system to function properly. The bigger the security holes, the better. Not wanting to take my exam with pen and paper, I decided to foist that heaping pile of stinking, steaming hot giant turd of an operating system known as Windows ME onto the partition that previously held the Windows 2000 experiment.

Lucky for me I’m a geek and I know how to install Windows ME AFTER Windows XP has been installed. Let me tell you, it’s anything but a joyous experience. After about 20 minutes of bitching and moaning, I had bare bones Windows ME shoehorned on my modern laptop. I will spare the details related to the the hell I had to go through to locate and install a working set of video drivers, but after some more swearing I got ATI Radeon M6-P installed and was set to go. Mind you, ATI won’t provide the Mobility drivers – referring you to “your manufacture” instead. If you have a Toshiba with ATI MP-6 Radeon graphics, you’ll probably find yourself paying a visit to FTP servers in Russia or Kashitiskan or Compaq in the UK. Anyway – it was bitch, but the deed is done.

Extegrity Exam software works fine and without incident under Windows 9x/ME. If you are having problems under Windows XP or Windows 2000 – I am not certain how much help the company will give you, but I am very curious about how its going with other students. I suspect my own problem centered around the fact that I have multiple partitions on my laptop, several operating systems, and the software does NOT check to see what services are actually running or loaded, but rather if the programs themselves simply exist on the hard drive.

Knowing that most people are using Dell’s or HP's with pre-loaded crapware, trojans, etc, I have a sneaking suspicious the proctor is going to get lots of complaining students. That would be great. I’d love to take my exam in a room with about 10 other students instead of a 100.

Now THIS is a Cool Computer

Long video - starts out showing the evolution of the computer and then gets to the actual product - a tiny portable ... laptop PC thingy ... that is extremely cool.

Video is in Quicktime format HERE.

Lord Jesus Commands You To Watch The Commercials.

Got this from Slashdot...

According to an article on Wired, the Senate may soon pass a bill labeled HR2391, a bill which lumps many other copyright bills.

If passed the bill would "would criminally punish a person who 'infringes a copyright by ... offering for distribution to the public by electronic means, with reckless disregard of the risk of further infringement.'" In addition the bill would "permit people to use technology to skip objectionable content -- like a gory or sexually explicit scene -- in films, a right that consumers already have.

However, under the proposed law, skipping any commercials or promotional announcements would be prohibited."


I can't get off The Death Star fast enough. I'm not sure the escape pods are gonna suffice, I need to get my ass to the Millenium Falcon (piece of crap that it is - at least it's fast)...

Monday, November 15, 2004

The United States of Europe

The stage is being set for a new cold-war between the US of A and the US of E.

A good article on at least one aspect of the New Europe (thanks oddly enough to the polices of The Empire) can be found HERE. You'll have to suffer through a brief ad, but I think it is worth it.

"If the EU has no intention of confronting America's military supremacy, that, Rifkin and Reid would agree, is actually Europe's ace in the hole. Let the Americans pour endless billions in taxpayer dollars down the Pentagon's money sink, the Europeans reason. As they see it, the key to future peace and prosperity lies elsewhere, in constructing complex webs of social interaction and economic cooperation that will undermine nationalism and fundamentalism of all stripes. While the United States foots the bill for the intractable conflict in Iraq and piles up huge budget and trade deficits, Europe has spent money on other priorities.

Whatever your intellectual and emotional responses may be to this burgeoning transatlantic conflict, it's difficult for any American to read Rifkin's book and not feel ashamed. The U.S. has fallen significantly behind the EU's Western European nations in infant mortality and life expectancy, despite spending more on healthcare per capita than any of them. (While 40 million Americans are uninsured, no one in Europe -- I repeat, not a single person -- lacks some form of healthcare coverage.) "

Knowingly or With Knowledge – Willful Ignorance and Culpability

One of the early concepts we are taught in criminal law is that a person who knowingly causes a particular result or knowingly engages in specified conduct is commonly said to have “intended” the harmful result or conduct. Often times actual knowledge of a material fact – an attendant circumstance – is a required element of an offense.

Today, most Americans (I would argue) fail to truly inquire, or research, or seek to look beyond that which they are told by the media machine, as no doubt plumbing the depths of what is actually taking place before their very eyes would require a journey to the apex of fact and fiction – a place where faith ends and reality begins – a place that is now too hot to handle for most Americans; a place that has given America today an almost Twilight Zone feel to it. Unfortunately, I don’t think Rod Serling, cigarette in hand, is going to come out of the dark and tell us not to worry.

Certain facts defy faith and require reason to comprehend; the budget deficit is exploding, the Dollar has lost nearly half its strength against the Euro over the past 4 years, we have more not less terrorism in the world, Iraq did not welcome us with roses, trillions in tax cuts during a war is not economic common-sense, and to believe that things are awesome when the situation says otherwise - is to be by choice willfully ignorant. It takes a lot of energy to ignore facts and replace it with a reality filled with faith and fantasy, but upwards of 58 million people on November 2nd did precisely that.

When a person is said to be guilty of “willful blindness” or “deliberate ignorance” it means that the actor (the person) was aware of a high probability of the fact(s) in question being true, and he deliberately fails to investigate in order to avoid confirmation of the fact. It is a simple legal concept and was applied, in a round about way, to implicate everyone from high-ranking Nazi officials to the average German citizen as being duplicitous in the Holocaust. For decades we heard Germans say, “Oh, but we didn’t know. If only we would have known, we would have done something about it…” This ranked just ahead of the “I was just following orders” defense.

A person does not have to take action to be guilty of willful blindness, his culpability can be based on his failure to make a simple inquiry to confirm or dismiss his suspicions. And that, sadly, is what we have here in America today. I know lots of otherwise decent people who want nothing to do with “anything anti-Bush.” Their comment is often a simple “Oh, that’s anti-Bush. I’m a patriot! I support Bush and our troops…” and back their heads go into the sand.

The Ostrich Instruction

“Supposedly, real ostriches do not just fail to follow through on their suspicions of bad things. They are not merely careless birds. They bury their heads in the sand so that they will not see or hear bad things. They deliberately avoid acquiring unpleasant knowledge. The ostrich instruction is designed for cases in which there is evidence that the defendant, knowing or strongly suspecting that he is involved in shady dealings, and takes steps to be sure that he does not acquire full or exact knowledge…” (citation omitted – probably out of Dressler on Criminal Law)

From the President down the notion “We had no-knowledge” flows like water from a spring - “Well, we didn’t know about this, and if we had known we would have…”. Whether it is Iraq, the massive mind blowing surplus turned into a you-will-never-ever-be-able-to-pay-this-back deficit, the entire 9/11 debacle, oh the list is endless. Denial is nothing new for people or governments, but such denial as ours in the face of so much overwhelming evidence that speaks of our demise means this country has long crossed into the borders of willful ignorance – and that, by the way, is not a good thing.

"My parents were immigrants," Hersh said. "They came here because America meant something…the Statue of Liberty and all that stuff, because America always was this bastion of morality and integrity and a place for a fresh start. And it's right in front of us, not hidden, that they've taken this away from us."

Do I Have Six Pack Abs?

A couple of the women in the row in front of me asked me a very pointed and likewise highly relevant question pertaining to matters of law: Do I have six-pack abs?

A woman with biting wit and classic Southern Style Humor (my definition – it probably doesn’t really exist) was talking about the things I have in common with her boyfriend i.e. science fiction, Linux, computers, CSPAN, money markets, oh and so much more it was downright uncanny. I remember commenting, “Next thing you’ll tell me his birthday is in October!” She exclaimed “NO WAY! OH MY GOD!” Well… it turns out his birthday is in October.

Given that I have so much in common with my fellow law student’s hard bodied boyfriend, she and another classmate inquired if I had six-pack abs. “OH MY GOD! Why yes, as a matter of fact I DO have six-pack abs!” Sort of… My abs are actually 15-pack abs, carefully crafted, honed and refined by 15-packs of dark Guinness Beer imbibed over many years of struggling through life. Believe me, getting these 15-pack abs took hard work and considerable amounts of time and effort to reach their current level of near perfection.

Therefore, I do not have six-pack abs. I have something even better; I have 15-pack Guinness Abs that can only be created with rich, dark beer – preferably built with Guinness as a foundation. My wife even calls my midsection "disgusting", but I assume she means it along the lines of "disgustingly sexy" or "disgustingly attractive" or - something. Maybe I better ask her to clarify as I can be a bit thick headed.

I’m still working on getting them down to six packs though. I’ll let everyone know when (A) there is a blizzard in Hell or (B) I actually accomplish such a lofty goal.

Global Warming – The View My Window

As an Arizonian, I welcome Global Warming – at least for as long as I have to live in Michigan. Next week is Thanksgiving here in the US – and outside my studio window … the lawn is being mowed. No, no, don’t be silly. Global warming is all just “myth” and techno psychobabble, and the tall green grass in late November is all just an "illusion" - probably something stemming from Nicotine.

Dollar Holler

Anyone who knows me personally knows that I predicted the Dollar collapse years ago, and that specific action would take place immediately after the election of George Bush. Now, traders are openly using the word “collapse” thanks to people like Treasury Secretary Snow running on PR-autopilot and recent word that Condi Rice might be Colin Powell’s replacement (God – all of this is enough to give me Shingles); I think a “collapse” of the Dollar is using too gentle of a term. Instead, the word “meltdown” seems more appropriate.

Thinking people i.e. people who opposed George Bush are not walking, but running away from the Dollar in what seems to be an approaching panic. I paid an extra $60 to have my new passport “expedited” to make my entrance into Canada a little smoother (buying some land, opening a bank account, etc), and now I’m waiting by the mailbox just as eagerly as I waited for my law school application results. Balancing all of this with law school finals is at the very least getting to be an interesting experience.

You don’t have to understand the charts to know what is happening. Generally speaking, when the lines on the chart point to the sky – that’s the Euro/Loonie/Kiwi – hell, take your pick, I think even the Peso is getting stronger against the Dollar. When the chart shows down arrows pointing to Hell (where Satan lives when he isn't busy meeting with Democrats - for our GOP readers), that’s the Dollar returning to its apparent point of origin.

Suffer from Depression?

Are you a law student i.e. are you depressed? Even worse, are you a Democrat astonished at the volume of paperwork required to become a landed resident of Canada/Ireland/New Zealand?

Allow me to make a suggestion: The 7mg Nicotine Patch, or if you’re in really bad shape – the 14mg dosage.

The cynical side of me has long wondered why the government / Republicans have been anxious to destroy tobacco. After doing some research, I believe I have found the answer. Nicotine is not only a mood enhancer and overall wonder drug (it makes you feel good, hence it is a tool of Satan), it also has shown positive results as a treatment for everything from ADD to Alzheimer’s disease.

One side effect that seems to happen with a fair number of people is the occurrence of vivid dreaming. Being a male in his mid-30's, I saw lots of upside to vivid dreaming that I probably don’t need to go into. As it turns out, none of my vivid dreams have morphed into the porn epics I was aiming for, and I suspect the reason for this is that deep down my subconscious mind is oblivious to my Monastic life style. In fact, my first vivid dream involved working out a computer problem employed as a tech working for some nondescript company. When I woke up, I felt like I had just put in a full days work at a low wage geek job trying to get a PowerPoint presentation to work on an overhead projector – because THAT WAS in fact the subject of the entire dream. Evidently, staring in the next Vivid Video porno courtesy of The Nicotine Patch doesn’t seem to be in the cards.

At first the vivid dreams will shock you, in large measure because they will probably be unlike anything you’ve ever experienced. Dreams become longer and more coherent. It’s as if every night is a new mini-series brought to you by your subconscious mind and Nicotine.

The Patch increased my ability to focus (without having to resort to cigarettes) while at the same time providing some surprising insights into the workings of my own psyche with vivid dreaming. Given the range of benefits offered by the patch, not to mention it being an exceptional tool to quit smoking, I suspect it is only a matter of years if not months before the “warning” bells will sound by the Orwellian-GOP types in government calling for its ban or strict re-regulation. Until then – if you smoke and/or are depressed and/or are a law student (hence depressed and probably a newly created chain smoker), The Patch is something you may want to consider exploring - before becoming a full blown chain smoker.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Canadian Booze History

Beer. Thanks to law school - I probably drink way too much of it.

I've Fallen And I Can't Get Up!

Ho hum. The Dollar keeps falling.

“The U.S. has got these massive deficits that nobody wants to buy into,” Bloom said. “It needs everybody to be buying dollars all day, every day, and the world doesn’t want to do that.”

Maybe it's because the rest of the world isn't buying into The Agenda?

Installing Mono on Linux Mandrake 10

Every now and then I get an email thanking me for my instructions on installing Mono on Mandrake. I'm posting those instructions (also located on another blog) here solely in the interest of making them easier to find for those trying to shoehorn Mono into Mandrake.

For the few dozen of my regular visitors - this is boring stuff, unless you're keen on trying Mono on Mandrake. Also, as you may have figured out - I am not only an ex-contractor, skydiving instructor-wannabe, upcoming lawyer, but also a hardcore geek (and I look one too)!

Installing Mono on Mandrake 10...

Get to the console and add some "cooker" sources for urpmi. These are the Cooker sources I like to use (note each "urpmi" instruction is to be placed entirely on a single line - no CR's):

urpmi.addmedia cooker-contrib with media_info/

urpmi.addmedia cooker-main with media_info/

urpmi.addmedia cooker-plf with

After you've added the above, type...

urpmi mono

And mono 1.0 will be downloaded and installed on your system.

Mandrake Linux 10.1

I've been wanting to check this release out for several weeks, but I haven't had the chance (cursed law school overwhelming-workload case briefing craporama machine) thanks to having to ... do law school stuff. Law school is defintely a love/hate relationship, but I digress...

Interested in trying Linux? Here's a fairly indepth review of Mandrake Linux 10.1 with some pretty screen shots.

Here's a typical screenshot of a Mandrake Linux desktop - HERE.

Some more screen shots HERE.

And Some Mandrake Linux goodness help HERE.

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Blogs and Such

I was Googling for Sey's Hersh's latest comments about the election (should I buy a condo in Canada to head to Spain - needed help making a decision) and found myself thirsty for some refreshing left-wing banter; the low grade stuff that can only come from a blog and ended up here:

The Smirking Chimp.

Monday, November 08, 2004

Reflections: Thomas Cooley School of Law

I have been reflecting lately on my law school experience, and I must say that I am rather happy overall. At times it is a difficult and painful experience, but at other times it is equally invigorating and rewarding. I’m glad I made this choice, although clearly it is not the path for everyone as I see more and more students weighing alternatives.

I’ve been reading on various blogs as well as postings on some of the online law school forums how other law students struggle with their peers, the “gunners” in their sections, the back stabbing, and so on. Cooley may have such characters as well, but thus far my own experience has been mostly positive.

My Property professor is a decent and likeable guy, although I know he struggles with delivering the material (who WOULDN’T struggle with RAP and Shelly tests?) If he sticks with it, I actually think he’ll end up being just fine, although it may take a few semesters before he finds his groove. I take some solace in the fact that he’s a regular guy as during a previous class while attending to business on break he joked with me - “So how’s the game going back in the bleachers (Spartans v Bucks) – anyone following it?” He was kidding – sort of, but obviously he once attended law school and probably suffered through a Property class or two of his own as well.

It might be the sheer numbers of Cooley students (somewhere around 900+ entering freshmen in my class) that limits the cutthroat tendencies that exist at the exclusive schools, or perhaps I’ve just been lucky. Whatever the case may be I am not unhappy with my decision to attend Cooley. The students are friendly, levelheaded and generally helpful.

Bets Against Dollar

"Sixty percent of the traders, strategists and investors questioned on Nov. 5 from Tokyo to New York advised selling the dollar against the euro. Participants also said the U.S. currency will likely drop versus the yen, British pound, Swiss franc and Australian dollar.

Bets by hedge funds and other large speculators on the dollar to decline rose to a record on Nov. 2, the U.S. Commodities Futures Trading Commission reported at the end of last week. The difference in the number of wagers on a gain in the euro compared with a drop -- so-called net longs -- was 53,465, the most since Bloomberg began keeping records in 1999.

``The speculative market is overextended on dollar weakness and they're looking for a trigger to turn and run,'' said RBC Capital's Marta. "

How things have changed in just four years:

The U.S. last month reached the $7.384 trillion statutory limit on its ability to borrow, forcing the Treasury to shuffle funds in accounts until Congress acts to raise the ceiling. Treasury officials said lawmakers must raise the cap by Nov. 18 to avoid default.

Yields on the 10-year note rose to 4.25 percent on Nov. 5, the highest in almost a month, after the payrolls report. The yield on the two-year note, the most sensitive to changes in the benchmark interest rate, rose 23 basis points, to 2.81 percent, since the beginning of last week.

Two-year notes ``represent the best place if you do want to express bearishness,'' said Paul Calvetti, head of U.S. Treasury trading at Barclays Capital Inc. in New York, one of 22 primary dealers of U.S. government securities that trade with the Fed's New York branch.

I know. It's boring, but believe me - it's worth keeping on an eye on this stuff.

Sunday, November 07, 2004

Another Day, Another Falling Dollar

[German Chancellor Gerhard] Schroeder's comment yesterday that the euro's rise is ``not yet dramatic'' triggered dollar losses and outweighed a report showing the U.S. economy added the most jobs since March.

``It's anyone's guess what the pain threshold is for the euro,'' said Robert Lynch, a currency strategist in New York at BNP Paribas. European officials' comments ``would suggest that at this point it's not going to be a problem any time real soon.''

``If a payrolls like this can't cause the dollar to rally, it's the clearest signal that there is something seriously wrong with the dollar,'' said David Bloom, a currency strategist at HSBC Holdings Plc in London.

Saturday, November 06, 2004

Classes Are Thinning Out

I must admit I was a little depressed today having taken actual notice of Evan not being in class. I never really got (or perhaps made) a chance to know the guy in person, and now I am inclined to wonder if perhaps having another traveler far from home and hearth to commiserate with might have encouraged him to forge ahead. I can certainly attest to the fact that being away from the wife and kids just plain sucks big time. There’s no way around it, no nice way of saying it – it just plain sucks. I hate it, but I supress it and carry on.

Who is going to take his place? Who is going to provide lawyerly insights by blurting out in class with happiness and glee - “LYING is BENEFICIAL! LYING is GOOD!”

Despite my own blog tendencies for humping-puppets and collapsing Dollars, it was always refreshing to see Evan's blog attempt to connect the deeper elements of humanity with law. Something I’d love to do as well, but as one of the short bus kids it’s probably best I stick with things I know. Unfortunately, those truly humanistic connections that I suspect Evan was searching for in law - just don’t exist in a satisfying way in today’s legal education system (and frankly I think that sucks). If I had my way, I’d much rather get a Masters in Medieval History or Literature than Law, but the latter opens many practical doors of insight that I believe make the short-term misery hopefully worth it. In Evan’s case, I suspect he’ll make the connections he needs that work best for him and I certainly wish him well.

(The one upside to Evan leaving is the grade curve. A few of us talked about this and while we miss Evan, his departure means that a few more of us will pass the class rather than being returned home in complete humiliation and suffer lifelong shame! Wahoo! Thanks Evan!)

Friday, November 05, 2004

It Won't Be Long Now...

In reality, the deficits are making the United States a less attractive place for investment. That is why the dollar is dropping and one of the reasons that the stock market is under pressure.

Just a few days ago the US Treasury reported that the net capital inflows from the rest of the world into the United States fell for the 6th month in a row. Private from abroad fell to $34.7 billion in August and from $72.9 billion in July. Asian central banks made up for the shortfall. If they hadn’t, the current account deficit would have exploded.

The NY Times quoted Ashraf Laidi, a currency analyst at MG Financial Group as saying, "foreign central banks saved the dollar from disaster. The stability of the bond market is at the mercy of Asian purchases of US Treasuries."

The current account deficit has grown so large the foreign investment coming into the United States is no longer creating economic growth. Although the United States is taking in 80% of the world’s surplus savings it is all being used to finance the deficits.

According to Stephen Roach, the head economist of Morgan Stanley, the deficits are growing so large that by the end of the year America’s indebtedness to other countries will reach 28% of GDP.

That would bring the US indebtedness to a level of 300% of exports. Argentina and Brazil were at 400% right before they collapsed in the 1990’s.

The Sorrows of Empire

If you don't know who Chalmers Johnson is - now is a good time to find out. He is the author of Sorrows of Empire and it is a must-read book for anyone looking for insight to our current situation. Needless to say, the future doesn't look very pretty.

Real Media video interview with Chalmers Johnson - Click Here and Enjoy. Obtained from this source HERE.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Duality Video

If you’ve never seen Duality – you are in for a nice surprise. No. It’s not an anti-Bush movie, or a rant, or anything else typical of the Majqa’ intellectual diet.

Duality has been around for several years and frankly, it’s a better Star Wars-ish movie than a lot of what Lucas puts out. These guys ended up getting a job with Lucas and if you watch the video you’ll see why.

Duality Page Here.

Duality Video 640x272 QuickTime (don’t even attempt this if you have dialup);

Duality Video 640x272 DivX;

Marry an American! Move To Canada to Escape Bush!

The fast-trak into Canada...

"Now that George W. Bush has been officially elected, single, sexy, American liberals - already a threatened species - will be desperate to escape.

These lonely, afraid (did we mention really hot?) progressives will need a safe haven.

You can help. Open your heart, and your home. Marry an American. Legions of Canadians have already pledged to sacrifice their singlehood to save our southern neighbours from four more years of cowboy conservatism."

It started out as satire, but evidently it is taking on a life of its own as a lot of people... uhm... want out pretty bad.

For a funny albeit sad isappointed Yanks story CLICK HERE.

Leaving America

I am losing count of the number people I know with sober straight faces that are building plans to leave the country. It is not just talk anymore among a few disillusioned progressives saying things like “if Bush gets elected I am leaving for Canada.” No. Something serious is taking place now. They mean it. They intend to follow through on it. They see the prelude to a civil war in this country and want to exit before the real fireworks begin. It is relative against relative, parent against daughter and fought within the realm of ideas – yet fraught with real-world consequences.

The reality of this election hit home to a lot people at every end of the political spectrum, and I suspect more than just a few of them have decided it is wise to depart from that place in which they are not wanted. When the car in the parking lot is egged and the tires are slashed by those who just finished voting their “moral values” - all because of having the lone Kerry bumper sticker in a sea of Bush ones … is a message to heed.

November 2nd wasn’t exactly The Night of Long Knives, but a considerable number of people fear such an event is merely a matter of time after the next terror attack. As the economy melts down, and the Dollar plummets – someone is going to have to take the blame and guess what? It is NOT going to be the ones that caused the problems. Those guys just got a big endorsement two days ago. Instead – it’s going to be the guy with the slashed tires and egg on his truck that will take the fall – and he really needs to leave while he still can.

The people I know who are either already out the door or are headed out soon - are schoolteachers, programmers, authors, corporate managers, people with good jobs and nice houses – serious level headed people – with skills and modest incomes. I know of one that is applying for an Irish passport, another that readying himself for New Zealand, and another with a Brazilian wife that could go almost anywhere. All in all I probably personally know two-dozen people that are working quietly, diligently – to leave.

The one upside is that at this point in time this country will not miss those heading for the door. They are viewed as the homosexuals, the non-believers, sell-outs, lazy, no-good, neo-French cultural-value polluters that are more than welcome to leave. I wonder how places like Canada, Ireland and New Zealand are going to feel about such scum immigrating to their country? I guess time will only tell.

Some Want Off The Death Star More Than Others...

Do you think this guy was just a wee bit too concerned about the massive GOP victory and mandate? I want off The Death Star as well, but this guy wanted off REALLY REALLY BADLY...

The stress level must have taken this poor Canadian by surprise. I'm not so sure they're used to the same level of trauma we are down here.

And Now The World Gets To Vote...

The Kiwi gains against the dollar. The Kiwi folks. The Kiwi.

Dollar falls close to all-time euro low;

Thanks in part...

Bush promises more of the same...

and so...

The Pound Pounds the Dollar;

Traumatized Friends of Liberty - A Video Primer

An art-as-propaganda film worth viewing that explains what is happening - and why - here in The New Roman Empire.


Got it from Hategun HERE.

Dollar Opens Down Bigtime - Again

This is going to become a regular event soon.

The Dollar is getting nailed again.

Daily Reports on Currency Trading News here.

BTW: Interested in currency trading? Something for everyone click here.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

The Dollar Took a Big Hit Today

The world does not need to cast a single ballot in a US election to have a voice in our country. They can and I suspect will - vote by simply telling the US Treasury where it can take its war bonds. This has already happened on more than one occasion and will continue to be reflected in the steady decline of the Dollar.

Generally speaking, strong nation states do not have extraordinarily weak currencies - unless something is going wrong (their currency is being dumped for another currency i.e. Dollars turned into Euro's or Loonies) or a deliberate devaluation is taking place to boost exports (and hence balance a widening trade gap). In our case - we have both of these events taking place.

Leaving for Canada or France or ???

This election means a lot of us are past anxious and are now downright eager to get off The Death Star as fast as we can. As a result, one question is bound to arise (aside from whether or not we can make it to the escape pods in time) - where to live when we land...

My cousin from Hungary built this website and it's been doing laughably well since he started it a year or so ago:


If you are looking to buy or sell a home in destinations both known and unknown, his website is an interesting place to start to get some idea of what is out there. Whether your destination is Canada, Hungary, France or just anywhere outside the grip of The Empire - give his site a look.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Link TV

For those us that seek a broader perspective on our world - we have Link TV. For everyone else, there is Fox News, MSNBC, ABC, and so on.

Discretion is still the better part of valor...

"The evil characteristic that makes a Nazi a Nazi is his utter inability to understand and therefore to respect the qualities or the rights of his fellow man.

His only method of dealing with his neighbor is first to delude him with lies, then to attack him treacherously, then beat him down and step on him, and then either kill him or enslave him...

Our enemies simply cannot comprehend how it is that decent, sensible, thoughtful individual human beings manage to get along together and live together as neighbors. "

Listening to past Great Presidents is painful, especially in the context of what is held today as a great President.

Bush's Address to Canada is HERE for comparison.

GOP Thought Process

A comical spin on the Republican Convention.

The QuickTime Video is HERE.

It's wonderful, funny and will drive you to drink.

Bush Wins 90% of Popular Vote

In my world – Bush easily won 90% of the vote.

I do not know a single person who voted for Kerry, although I know OF a few people who claim to be Kerry supporters and I assume voted accordingly.

ALL of my in laws are hard-core rabid Bush fans. They are not merely pro-Bush, they LOVE George Bush and sincerely believe he is perhaps just short of ordained by God. With one exception, an uncle of mine who fought in WWII and Korea, my opposition to Bush is mostly mine alone with respect to family. Even my 9 year old says he is going to vote for Bush, and given that I live in Taliban Christian Fundamentalist/GOP Controlled Territory - I suspect his vote will get counted before mine ever sees the light of day.

Friends who, frankly, have probably become at best “acquaintances” thanks to my political opposition to Bush are equally enthusiastic in their support for all things GOP. In fact, they regard the past 4 years as among some of the best this country has ever had with respect to getting the nation on “the right track” after suffering eight “Godless” years of Clinton.

The last Civil War in this country pitted brother against brother and son against father. A new, slowly emerging civil war of a different stripe is emerging in this country with similar affect. My in laws tolerate my existence, my own relatives are likewise (barely) tolerant and equally mystified as to how I can be so “ignorant” and fail to see Jesus and Bush in the same light. I have days where I just want to pack my bags and leave for Canada/New Zealand/France/Mars.

I think they have gone completely mad. They think I am an over-educated idiot. A big part of me, in some strange way, sincerely hopes that today - they get their way and win.

Ever drive down the highway, minding your own business, and suddenly notice in your rear view mirror a big ass MF weaving in and out of traffic, going 130mph, flipping people off, driving like a moron and being a danger to everyone else on the road? Every now and then we all encounter such people on the highway of life. Have you ever… deep down … wished (or hoped) that they would either (a) wreck big-time or (b) get nailed by the cops or (c) – both?

I think that sums up my feelings about this election.

Viva Bush.

Monday, November 01, 2004

Bush - Mistaken Video

Incredible. A Must-See video. Pity it's too late.


Special thanks goes to another distressed law student (Law School Neurosis) HERE.

Any postings after tomorrow are subject to be incoherent as I expect to imbibe substantial amounts of beer thanks to the coming Bush s-election trauma.

The thing speaks for itself.

An article worth checking out HERE on Jesus in business.

Also - a wonderful blog HERE worthy of following.

If I had money, I'd buy this for my ultra-wealthy friends back in Arizona (sadly - I'm just a poor unworth wretch):

Res ipsa loquitur, sed quid in infernos dicet...

The Vote Master

At the moment the Electoral Vote Predictor 2004 has Kerry ahead, but I think his chances of winning in the face of Florida are extremely slim. The man behind the web site is none other than Andrew Tanenbaum. You'll know his name if you're a geek.

From The Vote Master Faq:

"In a nutshell, because living abroad I know first hand what the world thinks of America and it is not a pretty picture at the moment. I want people to think of America as the land of freedom and democracy, not the land of arrogance and blind revenge. I want to be proud of America again. The U.S. media do a spectacularly bad job of informing Americans about what is going on in rest of the world. After Sept. 11, the U.S. could do no wrong. The entire world was on America's side. The invasion of Afghanistan was seen as completely justified. After all, the Al-Qaida leadership had to be decapitated. No one questioned that.

But Iraq was a completely different matter. Bush, Cheney, and Powell said they had conclusive proof that Saddam had WMD and could attack at any instant. The rest of the world wanted to see the proof. No proof was forthcoming. The answer was "trust us." We now know there were no WMD. There weren't even factories or labs to produce them. Saddam was an evil dictator with evil fantasies but he was no threat to America. Yet former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill said that the planning to invade Iraq began the day Bush was inaugurated. The administration simply misused the horror of Sept. 11 as a convenient excuse for doing something that was already in the works...

The Guardian, one of Britain's most respected newspapers, ran a column by Charlie Brooker last week ending with this paragaph: "On November 2, the entire civilised world will be praying, praying Bush loses. And Sod's law dictates he'll probably win, thereby disproving the existence of God once and for all. The world will endure four more years of idiocy, arrogance and unwarranted bloodshed ..." Then it gets so bad that I refuse to quote it. Maybe Brooker is a nut and maybe it was a joke, but the fact that a serious newspaper would publish this piece shows how deep the hatred of George Bush runs. And this comes from our closest ally. Imagine what people in Spain or Indonesia or the Arab world think."