September 30, 2003

Cuisses de Grenouille?

The feeding frenzy has begun. Democrats dining on Frog Legs. Not that I am not secretly tickled pink to see the Bushies sweat and really really angry that a CIA agent was outed... I'm just not sure this is what we want to do, at least with the fervor that approaches the wing nuts that plagued the Clintons for 8 years. How about a little decorum fellow bloggers? Hell I've seen rampant speculation and theories popping up all over the liberal blogdom that would make Ken Starr blush. The facts we know are enough. The who dunnit is really immaterial unless of course the Whitehouse is stupid enough to circle the wagons and stonewall, then there is always the chance of this snowballing into obstruction of justice.

It's still the economy and the stampede to war. This is a chink in the armor but not the Holy Grail. I don't think Bush is going to get impeached over this. First off the Dems don't control Congress.

Democrats should keep the heat on and see this through but let's not focus on this alone. The story is out and there is a lot of pent up anger and frustration to fuel the fires, but keep the eyes on the prize.

You get rid of a couple of the Bushanistas and we get some clones to take their place. We are still up to our armpits in alligators in Iraq. We have lost more jobs than any time since the Great Depression and Herbert Hoover. More Americans are living in or near poverty than any time in history.

We have a bunch of issues not just one. Well maybe One and that is the G.W. Bush & Co. Circus. Get it out of your system and let the system do it's thing. We need a special prosecutor or an independent counsel to be sure. There are professionals in the FBI who are not party hacks and can be trusted to get the skinny and name the names (although damn few people have been prosecuted for leaks historically). Don't expect a 17 1/2 minute gap to push the NeoCons into handing the presidency to Dick Cheny. Cheny doesn't seem to be in the same world as the rest of the team anyway. He is still spouting the old party line as of a couple of weekends ago.

The best we can hope for is a couple of anonymous sources in the media to name the names of the two vindictive idiots who called the media to begin with.
Now wouldn't that be fun! Leak the Leakers there is a meme.

Take a deep breath, be angry. But don't get too excited. As Kriselda says there are still 399 days before the election. If you do have a contact in the Washington Media well see if you can get them to talk off the record. I'll buy the scotch.

Posted by Philip at 09:54 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 28, 2003

Foto Fakery Revisited

Kriselda dropped by from Different Strings to comment on the picture of Isabelle
that has popped up in different places on the net and has been making the rounds via email as well. Kriselda ran it by a local meteorologist who said it wasn't a hurricane but perhaps shelf clouds associated with severe thunderstorms. Fair enough I never doubted the "clouds" just their placement in the picture.

So I did some more looking and found About.com's urban legend page where the picture was said to be mislabled. It is alleged to be a picture of Tropical Cyclone Graham from Feb 2003.

I'm not buying this, the photo to me is an obvious fake. So I poke some more. The photo is "credited" to Steve Todd and appears in a photo gallery at the Portland NOAA office web pages, except that there is no "there" there. The gallery referenced no longer contains the picture.

Steve Todd is the Chief Meteorologist In Charge of the Portland Office (how much longer is anyone's guess). Want to bet he wasn't on a tanker off the west coast of Australia in Feb 2003 where he could have taken the "picture"?

UPDATE: The picture is said to be real by the Web Master of the Portland NOAA office Clinton Rocky. The picture was removed because of copyright concerns.... still not convinced. I'll try and track down the photographer.

Posted by Philip at 03:14 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Casualty Reports

Over at Centcom the warriors would honor their dead by providing links to the casualty reports mixed in with the other headlines of the day, the casualties appeared "above the fold" so there was usually a mix of good news and bad news. No longer. The decision has been made US casualties no longer appear in the daily briefing. A nice little (little being the operative word) link has been added to the bottom of the main briefing page where you can find the information that doesn't belong on front page. I've added a link to the last 6 months of US casualties in the cost of war box on the right. You will note that the link above will let you search out a specific month and year or the last 99 days. The default returns the last 5 days (why not a full week?). via the New York Times. Not a permalink.

If the people at Centcom never changed the way they reported casualties this wouldn't be an issue, but the fact they have changed shows how the government wants to spin the war. Only natural I suppose, I guess I'm surprised that Centcom didn't see the error of their ways from the start. There are no civilian Iraqi body counts unless of course they are Iraqi's killed by other Iraqi's.

Posted by Philip at 06:10 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 23, 2003

Big Media/Little Media

You know how Colin Powell's son Michael is running the FCC and passing all these rules that are bringing us all together under a big tent in the name of consumer choice and diversity (Ministry of Doublespeak) well sometimes the local channels leave a bunch to be desired... read on or not it's just another piece of weirdness.

KATU is the local ABC affiliate. They pride themselves on local news coverage and having their finger on the pulse of Portland.

So Portland being the hot bed of soccer mania (Oregon has hosted World Cup games and is scheduled to host a quarter and semifinal game in this years WC).

The UP Pilots won the womens' NCAA championship last year. Clive Charles the beloved English soccer star and Portland fixture has recently died of cancer. The number one participation sport in Oregon (and the USA) is soccer.

KATU was scheduled to show USA vs Sweden on Sunday AM according to all the TV guides in my possession, I was up bright and early to watch Team USA!

What is on? KATU's local garden show for 30 minutes followed by an infomercial.

Whoa..I mean how off the mark can you be? Yes the show is a time slot leader 9:00 AM but it is a taped show and can be shown anytime vs a live event featuring a couple of local girls and a preview of things to come.

KATU is not returning phone calls. ABC had a lock on the games the only way to see it live was to travel to Seattle.

So Portland Oregon joins 3 other places on the planet where you can't see a World Cup game live. The other two places were WRIC Richmond VA. and KAIT Jonesboro AR.

While I don't want one company to own the newspapers radio and cable outlet in my city I do wish the local outfit would get a clue.

There is NO way they will live this down.

PS I am not a soccer fan, but I was hoping to catch one of those soccer babes whipping off her jersey (ok I blew it I'm a heterosexual blogger and a male chauvinist pig )

Posted by Philip at 08:15 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

September 20, 2003

Touchdown

I'm not the typical rabid football fan. I do eventually watch the "Super Bowl" and I went to my son's games when he played in high school. I even played in a varsity game or three way back a long time ago.

The game I watched today was a regional PAC-10 game with #22 Oregon playing #3 Michigan. The game was called by Dan Fouts and Keith Jackson. KJ is getting senile.

The Ducks upset the Wolverines, BS they beat them like a rented mule. The Ducks had their first TD taken away by a zebra. This set up Michigan's score on a blocked FG. They shanked the extra point. 6-0. Oregon reeled off the next 24 points. The Michigan offense were on the field for maybe 4 minutes of the half. KJ was sputtering (I am thinking he lost $50K on this game).

Michigan woke up late in the third quarter and moved the ball through the air. Oregon cannot defend 6'6'' tight ends this is no secret. UM scores 8 points on the same type of play Oregon was denied on the first drive. Balls stretched over the goal line except in watching the replays the runner is down before the stretch.

There was everything in this game. Blocked FG for a TD, Missed point after, fake punt, fake FG,punt return for a TD, sucessfull onside kick, blocked punt for a TD. Several interceptions, sacks, stuffs and runs up the middle for TDs. It was not as close as the final score would have you believe.

The last Wolverine drive that died had KJ calling for a 5th and 8. Dan had to remind him the game was over several times. 22 seconds and Duck ball. KJ was talking about a field goal and another onside kick. Kieth Jackson the "voice" has lost it. Maybe it was jet lag.

Michigan dosen't travel well. When they come out West to start they get beat.

Go Ducks....

Posted by Philip at 11:32 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Major Explosions

I just woke up to the sounds of some major explosions. I mean miles away. There was an airshow at the Hillsboro airport today at first I thought a fireworks show. I don't think this is what this was. Watching the local news to find out exactly what this is... stay tuned.

Fireworks were scheduled, but the 4th of July wasn't like this...


OK maybe the sky isn't falling... Local news station says every thing is cool. I mean to tell you I have seen some fireworks in my life but this one took the cake. No rythmn no skybursts just some major lighting of the distant sky and smoke rising. More like shock and awe on the TV via Bagdad.

That is what I get for napping. You do not want to wake up to this kind of thing.

Posted by Philip at 09:09 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 19, 2003

The Cost of War

I just wish I could change my templates and have them publish without having to push them up stream. Maybe I'm not doing something right.

This should add the Cost of War to my right hand bar......

Posted by Philip at 01:34 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Foto Fakery

With Isabel in the news it doesn't take anytime at all for the freepers (did I get that term right? Filchy Boy loves it I like it too) to get their share of the bandwidth. Below is an expanded cropped version of this "cool picture". Notice how the hurricane has been deposited off the port bow. Of course this guys account might blow out it's bandwidth so if the link doesn't work there is another copy here. Ham fisted editing it's enough to make Mark quit his Photoshop session. Seriously I think Mark is offline for a while. Seems the real Isabel dumped lots of water his way along with trees and power-lines and all the other detritus pushed by some healthy wind. Hope you are dry and pleasantly buzzed big guy and the missus and all you hold dear safe and sound.


Posted by Philip at 12:31 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

September 17, 2003

Drums of September

The local high school marching band is practising. I am a couple of miles away and the beat flows on the evening wind. Familiar sound as welcome as the freight train that comes through each morning. A distant sound you must listen for.

Have you heard your local band? Step outside and listen closely to the "silence"

Posted by Philip at 08:25 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

A Language Dies

Typical day, work ahead, bills to pay. NPR waking me up. Our local station has 12 minutes per hour (during the Morning Edition) to offer up local stories this one captured my attention. The loss of a language has many repercussions. Food for thought. I am not a linguist and late to the game, but many times a culture will come up with a single word that conveys a very significant understanding of life. Koyannisqatsi comes to mind.

What if you were charged as the sole repository of your language? We have Miss Neva Eggman on tape last native speaker of the Klammath tounge.

Posted by Philip at 07:52 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Update at 11

hmmm is my ping going to work?

Posted by Philip at 04:01 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Fire Rumsfeld

Well I guess you got a letter from Eli and MoveOn too. I usually back MoveOn close to 100% of the time. And I would have backed the idea of going after Rumsfeld (I guess going after the idiot at the top is too ambitious). But I can't quite get behind blackmailing the President. Which is what it seems to me that MoveOn wants to do. Not that if I had pictures of GW with a coke spoon up his nose I wouldn't use them. Nope this money is destined to support our troops (well hopefully some of it). It should also go toward rebuilding Iraq.

My open letter is in the extended entry

To MoveOn.org an open letter regarding the fire Rumsfeld pettition hold up the President's bankroll:

I agree with you in principle but the troops in Iraq are my main concern. They need to be funded adequately in order to defend themselves. This nasty furball is a result of President George W. Bush's mismanagement, incompetence, and ultimately his own stupidity. Call for the impeachment of George W. Bush and I'll back that in a heartbeat.

Dumping the mess we created into the hands of the UN is nonsensical. The UN without the US is a farce, as is the US without the UN. We made the mess we should clean it up. Occupied countries are a problem throughout history.

Nation building is NOT a bad idea, a stable democratic Islamic state is something to aspire for. I believe the majority of Iraqis want to attempt such a social experiment. Yes this is costing American lives, yes the war was a mistake, but when you have already screwed the pooch you have to pay the price. Get a focused "exit strategy" be realistic admit we are nation building (when we finish in Iraq I think we should do Palestine).

Bailing out of Iraq will be a mistake as much as going to war was. America needs to finish what it started, if that means playing bad cop to Britain's good cop then that must be. If the UN want's to cooperate it can, unfortunately for the Iraqis there is a pissing match between France and the US no body wins that one, but Iraqis suffer.

I protested this war, I prayed it wouldn't happen, but now we are in it we need to fix it. Throw out Bush by all means but rebuild Iraq and leave them with a nation and a democracy they can love and defend. It is our responsibility and our duty as war mongers, we owe it to those who have already died. If this war was to have any meaning then the Iraqi people need the best chance they can have to organize themselves into a peaceful democratic society. There are essentially three seperate factions in Iraq, do you think they can organize into a republic on their own without redress of past grievances and other scores that need settling? This will take a generation or more to accomplish.

Respectfully disagree with MoveOn on this one, I think you need to take the pulse of America. I AM a LIBERAL Democrat at least in my own eyes. People hate this war but they should focus on how we got there. Getting out is going to be difficult and painful but to shrug our shoulders and blackmail our "fearless leader" is not an adult response to this mess. Fire Rumsfeld is a good idea I can get behind that. Make the administration accountable for the funds they request, a little bi-partisan BBQ with Rumsfeld as the main course is a great idea. But out and out blackmail? Our troops need some of that money, Iraqis need some of that money.

I don't suppose you can reconsider your position as you have publicaly taken your stand. But I cannot support your position on this.

Continue to do good work I do support most of your positions and believe in your organization.

Regards,

Philip Vassar

Posted by Philip at 12:58 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

September 15, 2003

Thanks Bill (and Mark)

Got my autographed graphic Claude Funston novelette. Love those folks at the VO, btw if you haven't seen this issue #40 then you are really missing out on the best ever edition. I'm not in it and I think that it is why it might be the best ever... actually it is huge, diverse and chock full of great stuff. MY favorite? How to describe an Alien Culture by Dick Jones. It rings with me reminding me of my own childhood in Merry Olde not that we were Celtic Romanish but my mother's family were displaced Irish brought to England by WWII. Out of place out of time as they came from a 19th century existance in Thurles to 20th century London. But the Travellers were known to us often stopping on the family land. My Nanna had her tales and as a child I listened wide eyed and full of dreams. Thanks Dick.

Posted by Philip at 08:54 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Mail from Microsoft NOT!

I got this one in the mail last week with an "empty" attachment this week I got it again from a different wing-nut but they got it right this time they put a worm on it. It included links to recent Microsoft patches, the attachment was named as if it was a MS "hotfix". It was an executable q370344.exe containing the W32/Gibe-B@mm worm. You could have all the patches in the world installed but if you execute the attachment they will not help one bit.

This worm is nasty if you get it like the spybot worm I wrote about recently. It disables regedit and task manager and launches multiple copies of itself renames itself and uses several methods to run the "hidden" versions.

Microsoft NEVER mails out patches to customers unless you have an open ticket and then they just send you a link where you have to go to a Microsoft site to download them. Microsoft technicians use their own names in the email address and they will direct the email to your address and not some spam list.
Of course some poor soul spooked by all the notoriety about worms and security holes in recent months that they will happily execute the attached worm don't you be one of them.

I've seen this has been sent to more than a few people most smart enough to not run the attachment.

It is an older virus and is detected by all the virus scanning engines. So keep your guard up. Read on to see the email content sans HTML table and links. Note how the mail is certified virus free . My what big eyes you have Grandma.....

Microsoft Customer

this is the latest version of security update, the
"September 2003, Cumulative Patch" update which eliminates
all known security vulnerabilities affecting Internet Explorer,
Outlook and Outlook Express as well as five newly
discovered vulnerabilities. Install now to protect your computer
from these vulnerabilities, the most serious of which could allow
an attacker to run executable on your system. This update includes
the functionality of all previously released patches.

System requirements Win 9x/Me/2000/NT/XP
This update applies to Microsoft Internet Explorer, version 4.01 and later
Microsoft Outlook, version 8.00 and later
Microsoft Outlook Express, version 4.01 and later
Recommendation Customers should install the patch at the earliest opportunity.
How to install Run attached file. Click Yes on displayed dialog box.
How to use You don't need to do anything after installing this item.

Microsoft Product Support Services and Knowledge Base articles
can be found on the Microsoft Technical Support web site.
For security-related information about Microsoft products, please
visit the Microsoft Security Advisor web site, or Contact us.

Please do not reply to this message. It was sent from an unmonitored
e-mail address and we are unable to respond to any replies.

Thank you for using Microsoft products.

With friendly greetings,
Microsoft Public Support

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
©2003 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved. The names of the actual companies
and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

---
Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by Kaspersky anti-virus system (http://www.kaspersky.com).
Release Date: 25.8.2003

Posted by Philip at 08:35 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 10, 2003

Big Brother

I have a confession I am watching the damned show.

I was hip I didn't watch Richard Hatch win Survivor. I made the mistake of watching a single show in the next season. Just to see what the buzz was about. It was TV Crack I got hooked. Shame on me. I was content to watch Survivor through the the next fw years a guilty pleasure for one who hates commercials.

Then this year because of where I am and who I am sharing space with I got exposed to Big Brother a watered down version of Survivor. I am lower than low I am actually enjoying this piece of low cost reality TV that is putting writers and TV stars out of work. I am so ashamed.

I don't watch fires or car wrecks (train wrecks are an exception), but it is like a mystery where the culprit is not discernable until the last few pages, there is an unpredictability factor.

I know this admission excludes me from the ranks of real serious bloggers but I have to own up. I want Jun to go up against Allison. Robert is a wimp... And the thing is I can be all wrong. Maybe that is the hook. How many movies or television shows actually surprise you? Most of us figure it out way before it is over who done it or what cliche the show is acting out.

Woe is me. I will kick this habit. I promise, not to blog about what is going on.

Posted by Philip at 10:10 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 07, 2003

25 Years ago Today

One of the Best Still Remembered

R I P

Posted by Philip at 08:56 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 06, 2003

Drug War Rant

Attourney at Arms has some great stuff about how our Nation is conducting another war one that has been going on for at least 20 years has more victims than Viet Nam and touches us in the pocket book if not on a more personal level.

We see the problem we rant. What are the answers? That is a whole nother blog but here are a few of the things I know... This is a cut and paste of a comment thread the original inspiration comes from the link above.

Party on.... All drugs should be available to all people without government restrictions, let Darwin decide who lives and dies. Except when someone under the influence causes injury or death to themselves or other innocents then we can lock them up or bury them depending on what side of the line they fall.
Does that work? Will education prevent person abuse? Drugs are not abused people are...

You are right the drug war is useless fruitless and a huge waste of money.

What is the solution? Darwinism? Hard vs Soft? What is a hard drug what is a soft drug? Set setting and the amount ingested. How can we control this?

So I have a libertine leaning that says anyone can do anything any time they want. They screw up and cause loss of life, property damage etc then they pay to the full extent of the law.

Trouble is most of these poisons are subtle and take too long to weed out the stupid, puts a lot of innocents at risk meanwhile.

So while ranting against what isn't working tell us what does work. I believe in the premise I have no idea how to solve the problem and it is a problem.

This isn't a moral issue with me I've tried everything under the sun and would not lock up anyone for the crime of possession. Intoxicated or incapacitated a threat to public safety that is another issue.

But drugs that alter consciousness legal or not take a huge toll on the human race.

If we are not spending money policing we are spending money curing addictions or supporting those incapacitated by their addictions. I want to support a reasonable policy where is it?

Philip • 9/6/03; 4:17:52 PM

**** Content removed ***** comment was copyrighted by author It was of the nature that we shouldn't criminalize or demonize a large segment of our population. It was not my intent to use copyrighted material my apologies to Attourney at Arms.

Oy Vey! Shrug of the shoulders and a look to the sky. You are right.
Where does the moral stigma come from? Uncompassionate tight assed people who don't understand why someone would poison themselves and put themselves and their fellow human beings at risk?

In the United States every 12.5 minutes someone is injured as a result of the use of a legal drug. Some one dies every 30 minutes.

3000 people died on 9-1-1 and as a nation we were horrified outraged and wanting to go to war. Each year 9-1-1 happens 5 times over. A dripping faucet, a drip that is driving people fucking nuts.

This is every year coming down a bit but a steady 17K people for the past few years. These are constituents, pissed off voters lets suppose each victim had one sibling and two parents and 5 close friends that is over 100K new activists each YEAR.

That is one legal drug. What happens when we decriminalize all the rest? It is hypocrisy in the worst way to serve up alcohol and lock up the tokers, I mean pot smokers are not going to injure someone every 12.5 minutes.

Do you want to fund that experiment? Maybe it is only every thirty minutes or every hour. One innocent a lifetime is one too many for any family.

I'm not talking about you because you are ready willing and able to accept the consequence of your own decisions. I'm talking about the person coming home from work or going to school who is sharing the space with the person willing to gamble that the drug of their choice is not going to impair their judgment or ability to get from point a to point b without causing grievous harm to their fellow citizens.

I am not demonizing these people my heart goes out to everyone who alters their consciousness then proceeds to put themselves and others at risk.

They ARE criminals if they cause damage or worse as a result of their choices. Do we give them a break, you bet diminished capacity. If someone dies it is manslaughter not murder because the individual was not intending to kill someone it just happened.

So we legalize all consumption of all known compounds and live with the consequences when your spouse, child, sibling, parent or close friend is in the morgue how will you feel about those laws?

People with problems are not criminals people who fuck up as a result of those problems are. As a society how do we tackle the cost benefit analysis?

People who have an agenda against legalizing more drugs are not tight assed puritans who don't think you are entitled to get as fucked up as you want to.

Some of them have killed people as a result of their stupidity. Many more have lost loved ones. Some are just running the numbers. They are not for the most part making moral judgments they are simply living with the reality of the situation and cannot see how letting more people have access to more drugs is going to help anything.

Again I ask what is the solution? Whatever the answer is is not an answer. Rant away. There is injustice in this world, the drug war is stupid, but man you have millions of your fellow citizens living with the PROBLEM.

Find a better way lead us to the light.

Philip • 9/6/03; 9:07:15 PM

Posted by Philip at 09:40 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

September 05, 2003

Friday night bloging

Four entries in a single day another blog addict

This will not be an earth-shattering entry. I am home alone herding cats. There are oustide cats and indoor cats. Some get wet food others dry... I have written instructions on how to care for each, I am not a cat person or a dog person the whole idea of owning "pets" is not something I relate to at this stage of my life.

I can go through the motions and I have a genuine concern for their well being but the idea of owning a pet no longer makes sense. As time goes by many attachments fall away.

So why on a Friday night do you blog? Well because you have nothing better to do.

Friends are off on a weekend camping trip. I have commitments that are keeping me home.

So is SG1 the best sci-fi series of all times? I lean to Babylon-5 but SG-1 is still in production. I was never a McGyver fan but I do enjoy Richard Dean Anderson in SG-1. I am a long time Trekki loved the original, liked STNG and Voyager never really got into Deep Space Nine and have not watched the newest incarnation (name escapes me).

So home alone watching TV. Something is not right. Probably me.

OK I have reached my limit I was going to place links to all the Sci-Fi references but they would be redundant.

Sure am happy Mark didn't out the Preacher. Blogger mistake 1o3 Never believe what you see.

Happy trails (if you are tripping and reading this you have more problems than I)

Philip yet another blog addict (YABA)

Posted by Philip at 09:54 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

More Spam Please

Is this Meta-Spam? Considering I "opted in" to silicon.com's incessant emails this is all too funny. I should really see if they have an RSS feed and unsubscribe. But the story is good enough to share. Unfortunately it is an email and not linkable so I have to post it. Read on if you want to know just how hard it is to be a spammer.

Dear Philip

It's not easy being a spammer, you know.

You spend your days sending millions of emails to unsuspecting addresses offering a range of tantalising goodies: from little blue performance-enhancement pills that may or may not rhyme with 'Niagara' to chances of making a fortune from deceased Nigerian millionaires, and what do you get in return? Thanks? Ha! Hardly.

Thousands of abusive replies demanding to be unsubscribed and explaining where you can shove your vials of little blue pills. And the bouncebacks? Don't even mention the bouncebacks.

Imagine it: you get home in the evening after a hard day's spamming, and your wife asks you how your day at the office went. Could you admit: "Well Sugar Drawers, I sent millions of unsolicited emails to millions of addresses, many of them owned by children, telling them about frisky teenage girls who like to..." Well, you get the general idea.

What these poor people need is a place to unwind, a place where they can find a shoulder to cry on, a place where everybody knows your name (or at least your email address). In other words a spammers' support group - and hey presto, that's exactly what the poor little tykes have got.

Over 150 spammers have joined the Bulk Club, an online community that offers tips, tools and a comforting community for bulk emailers.

According to Wired magazine, a membership list accidentally left exposed at the Bulk Club's website, reads like a who's who of blacklisted spammers.

Illustrious names nestling in the hallowed ranks, include Damon Decrescenzo, sued by both Microsoft and Amazon in recent months and John Milton, also known as Davis Wolfgang Hawke, a 'former neo-Nazi' who turned to spamming millions of people offering to increase the size of the old chap (at least his career's going in the right direction).

For a measly $20 per month, Bulk Club members receive access to an archive of best-practice spamming tips, spamming software, spamming community forums where you can share your spamming stories and, wait for it: "300,000 FRESH emails per week." Mmm fresh emails...

The club's operator swears the members are dedicated to promoting "responsible" spam. (Which presumably is just vast quantities of unsolicited mail clogging up home and business inboxes, but without the rude words.)

Oh, and all the information detailing the 'misleading' tactics used by some bad apples are simply there to elucidate why they are so improper and not posted as best practice guides.

But there's no rest for the wicked. As soon as the Bulk Club and its members were exposed online the site was hacked and taken offline, anti-spam activists are the prime suspects. The impact to the Club's business was described as being "extreme".

With a recent survey by Yahoo! reporting that three-quarters of spam sufferers would rather clean a blocked toilet than wade through the oomskah festering in their inboxes, the Round-Up suspects readers will have little sympathy with the spammers' plight.

Posted by Philip at 10:10 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Just joking

Hopefully Joe Fontaine the pastor of the Myrtle Street Church of Christ will get it. I know he is from Dallas and not Austin but stranger things have happened. If this makes no sense you aren't a fan of Fried Green Al Quedas and or the RLP. Imagine how conflicted I was when I saw Mark's post.

From my own extensive research I knew the Preacher was actually from Nome Alaska living at 123 Catch Me Lane. I haven't called his 800 number I'm afraid it's a prayer line for Jimmy Swaggert and then my world would fall apart.

They should call him Coyote. Off to work. TGIF

Posted by Philip at 07:40 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

It's Funny

How this weeks VO is about advice and how my recent posts have been about giving and getting advice. For all I know (which is damned little) I could be the poster boy on how not to offer advice.

MT (Moveable Type) has an option that allows you to put on your editing page a ditty displayed to all authors. Since this particular Blog has a single author I decided on "here be dragons play nice". Advice to myself, a reminder of how after we hit the submit button what you say is written, published and for all to share. I started blogging offering comments on things. The first thing I picked on was the tool which caused a fake spreadsheet to be displayed if you happened to blog during work. A "boss button" I failed to get the joke and proceeded to write a polemic describing how stupid the idea was and dishonest and etc.. etc..

All the time sure of my position. Turns out the whole exercise in technology was a meta-joke. Written with full knowledge of how lame the idea of hiding work time blogging was. I was put in my place by the author of the tool asking his fans to put me in my place.

Blogger mistake 101. Did I learn, no-siree, I went on expressing my opinions as a newbie full of myself and trying to add my witty remarks with the big boys and girls of blogdom. I have commented on most of the big spots and more of the new blogs. Fearless or stupid you decide.

Giving advice on line is an exercise in futility at best, an act of megalomania at worst. If you must comment argue a point or agree with the author do NOT sit on the mountaintop and dispense your pearls of wisdom. They are rarely well accepted nor will they change anyone's opinion of themselves.

The upside is the irate blogger will come to your site and castigate you thus creating more traffic and comments. He with the most hits wins.

I witnessed something tonight in blogdom that is causing me a real problem hopefully my questions will be answered via email. Has to do with anonymous blogging. Stay tuned because once I understand what is going on I'll have more to say.

See I'm learning

Posted by Philip at 12:15 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 03, 2003

Flippant

As I am a commenter rather than a blogger sometimes the comments come home to roost.

There is a new blog in the Salon Community where an individual has offered up her soul. The writing is so compelling that I questioned is this real or a trial ballon? Of course I jumped in with both feet in my mouth. I described her life as a train wreck needing to be filmed. This was harsh. I am not a judgemental person. When I wrote my comment I was being playfull, but no matter what my intention the post was hurtfull, at least perceived so.

This blog deserves to flourish I know it has taken some hard knocks. I need to remember that comments can encourage and discourage. You go girl was not my first impression, I tried to craft a witty remark. My bad it was not taken that way.

When you give advice take care for the intuitive response you have is only understood by you. Your reader may have a different opinion.

Perils of blogging 1o2.

Posted by Philip at 11:50 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

September 02, 2003

Content

this blog was never about content. It is a place for me to play with blogging software. Then life throws you a curve ball and you put it on the web.

The company president has found my blog. As busy as he is I am honored he would take time to read it. It does bring up the question of updating the blog on company time. Note to self don't do it...

My son Sean is going to move. Across the country to the place I left 27 years ago. No worries I encourage him to grow and explore. He has family there and if he can put up with the heat and humidity more power to him, it didn't bother me at his age. I'll miss him being close and seeing him when he can spare the time.

His mother, my ex, is going to save the peasants in Peru. Forget there is a civil war going on and getting in the middle of a fight leaves you open to punches from both sides. There is a new form of tourism (OK not new, new to me) tax deductable visits to third world countries where you volunteer from 9-5 running day care centers or teaching conversational English to high school students. You get to live high in the Andes watching for Shirley McClaine UFO's nights and weekends off. $5K plus air fare for three months. I am not a cynic I beleive in the work, I just am concerned for her safety. You see this woman has fierce opinions. I have asked her to keep her mouth shut. Macho men don't like women with fierce opinions.

I applaud her courage and sincerity. Seems to me there are a lot of places closer to home for her to use her talents and desires to make this a better world.

Think globally act locally. She want's an adventure and wraps it in spiritual clothing. If she was going trekking and visiting Machu Pichu I wouldn't care.

She is convinced there is no danger and if there is it only adds spice to the choice.

I hope I am a know nothing worry wart on this. You see I lost some friends in Africa a couple of years back. Hacked to death by machete while on safari.

Shit happens. I suppose there are worse ways to spend your retirement.

Be carefull.

Posted by Philip at 11:28 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

September 01, 2003

Third Place

The new VO is out and lo and behold I got a prize.

I am not a blogger. OK I have a blog but I am not called or driven to post. I am more like Chauncey Gardener. I read and comment at other blogs but I rarely feel the need to post something to my own web space.

The whole spam thing is foreign to me for what ever reason I just don't get it OK my email filters are set to receive only from the people in my contact list. If I don't know you your email ends up in a folder that I delete on a regular basis usually sight unseen.

When Mark called for submissions I sent off an email that said I don't get spam.
Then I went to the possible spam folder and found the Live Web Cams for Free email.

You've got spam! Something to work with.. Cams became Clams in a hurry. It turns out that Clam pictures are pretty damned suggestive. So I googled clam pictures and selected a few, found a javascript slide show and created some links. Next thing I know I have some deconstructed spam with GRAPHICS.

I read the rulzs I did my best and I got third place. Y0 BILL the execution may have been lame but the idea was top shelf.

Never been third place before. I have some first places and second places and honorable mentions but no actual third place.

Hell I am going to get an autographed piece of work from the creator of Zippy the Pinhead how cool is that? Thanxs Mark.... As an engineer I am challenged I tend to follow instructions.

Not to say I can't think outside the box. Bingo!

Posted by Philip at 06:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack