November 28, 2003

Just in time for Christmas

For the woman who has everything.

Posted by Philip at 08:40 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

November 27, 2003

OH My Gawd

I'm linking to the National Review... I guess conservatives can be funny when they are not being scary. Hazzards of Vegan living. I like the part about superheated gases.

Posted by Philip at 11:56 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Some time Friday...

Looks like my hosting company is moving on up so there is a scheduled outage. Moving a data center is cool usually an exercise in planned chaos. I can see a ninety minute outage if they don't try and move everything all together that way the outage is limited to a subset of servers at any given point a rolling outage as it were. I think that is how it will be done if I read the letter correctly. Anyway if you try and get through and can't you can assume this is the reason why.

This is a broadcast message to all Digital Crocus users.

We've got some scheduled downtime coming up tomorrow (Friday) evening. Our co-location company, ASUK, are moving premises to a much larger and better-connected data centre, improving our connectivity from 12mbit to over 200mbit, and peering with the US will improve.

Here's an extract from an email they sent us:

>We are also taking this opportunity to upgrade our fibre connections. We
>will be installing a new 100mbit line from Mistral, and a 100mbit line
>from Level3. This will expand our connectivity from 22mbit to an
>amazing 200mbit! This will allow faster speeds for all customers, as
>well as improve the stability of the network as a whole.
>The move is scheduled to start on the evening of Friday 28th November,
>and will continue on the 29th and 30th November. Downtime will be at a
>minimum whilst we move the servers from our current datacentre to our
>new one. We are estimating 60-90 minutes of downtime whilst the servers
>are moved.

We don't quite believe them on the 60-90 minutes front; it'll be nice if it only takes them an hour to move 200 servers from one location to another and boot them all up again, but hopefully it shouldn't be too much longer than that.

We're very sorry for the inconvenience, but hope it'll be worth it as everyone's sites should be faster and the network will be more stable in future.

Many thanks for everyone's continued support, we appreciate having such a great user base.

Best Regards,
Luke Marsden

Digital Crocus

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November 26, 2003

Merry Christmas!

I don't know where I got the idea that working in the AIr Line industry was glamorous, most likely my mispent youth watching too much TV and reading those terrible books like "Coffee, Tea, or Me?". Here is the reality of being a flight attendant. The bright side is they can travel cheap, dark side is they can't afford to eat when they get there.

Posted by Philip at 10:12 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Useful Bookmark

I didn't know that was such a treasure trove of information. Steven Aftergood runs a one man show keeping as much of the government under glass as possible. Sometimes you can tell what the secrets are by what is missing.

Posted by Philip at 08:59 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

November 25, 2003

Calling Pesky the Rat

Have you had enough Badger today? Sound so turn down your speakers or put on your head phones. Hey I liked it. Kind of trance inducing....

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Help feed starving people in Portland

Buck-a-Hit Day Dec. 10

OK maybe not starving but down on their luck and looking for a meal people. Portland blogger Jack Bogdanski is going to pony up for hits delivered to his web site at a dollar a shot, two weeks from tomorrow (Wed Dec 10). I know I can't drive much traffic to his site but if any of my readers can pick this up and send him mega hits the hungry in Portland will appreciate it. Oregon just recently fell off the #1 spot in the US for Food Uncertainty. We still have a national leading unemployment rate for a state although there are cities counties and towns where unemployment runs higher than our state average. So brother can you spare a mouse click?

Posted by Philip at 03:35 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Soundbites... sometimes they work!

"One of my favorite green bond proposals [in the energy bill] is a $150 million riverfront area in Shreveport, LA. This Riverwalk has about 50 stores, a movie theater and a bowling alley. One of the new tenants in this Louisiana Riverwalk is a Hooters restaurant. Yes, my friends. Here we have an energy bill subsidizing both hooters and polluters." -- Sen. John McCain

And the Administration energy bill is toast.

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Wanna be a Rove Ho?

Here is a young woman who either takes Karl Rove to task or is taken to task by Karl Rove. Snarky goodness.

Posted by Philip at 10:08 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Political Rage

Rayne is mad as hell and not going to take it anymore. She and hubby had a political difference of opinion. Actually I'm not sure it was about politics or the appropriate way to express your indignation at the BS that passes for explanation of current administration policy. I feel that anger is best sublimated in the presence of children. Rayne sees it as a means of training up good citizens, into every life some Rayne must fall. I started to defend my position over in the comments I decided to post it here.

Speaking ones mind can be done rationally with passion and force of argument. It doesn't need to be done while in the cups of "righteous" anger. When in that frame of mind there are no arguments other than "Let God sort em out", for no one who makes up the other side deserves to live, They are the despised enemy. Woe be unto anyone who looks like the enemy.

To each his own. I believe values can be passed on through example. Children can understand different things at different stages of development. They can understand fairness and equality at a pretty young age. Righteous political anger built up from a lifetime of injustice and struggle I'm not sure they understand, only that mom and or dad sure is angry. Most children when faced with that anger are confused they want to make things better. If you can take time out of your rant to assure them they are safe and they are not responsible for the anger then well and good.

American politics is getting to be pretty ugly we are growing closer and closer to class warfare where there is very little common ground left to occupy. Perhaps it is time to man the barricades and bring out the guillotine. For that is the passion that I am talking about.

Screaming at the TV is "funny" (not that I would laugh) to me. You know that the object of your frustration is not influenced by your outburst. It is for local consumption. A howl of impotence.

I hope you feel better, now go apologize to the children and explain what makes you angry and irrational to the point that you would loose it and bring that energy into the home. Better the anger is spent knocking on doors supporting your candidates. Of course all of you can stand and scream at the TV all you want. Rage against the machine. Me? I turn off the TV. I don't need to fuel my anger, I know the outrage.

I understand completely the feeling. Do I think calling bullshit on something that is bullshit a fair response? Sure among friends who understand my frustration. Do I feel the need to get in President Bush's face and say bullshit to him? Not especially, it certainly isn't going to change his mind. No I am going to work long and hard to unseat him what I cannot give in money I will give in time.

While I understand how crazy BushCo can make you how do you deal with those political urges?

Posted by Philip at 07:10 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

November 24, 2003

On being an "Independant"

I am begining to think that many folks registering as an Independant these days are people who are fiscally conservative and socially permissive in other words old school Republicans who are ashamed to own up to membership in the co-opted party. If you want to be a compassionate conservative vote for Bush, who has run up record deficits in three short years where is the fiscal responsibility? Bush who pays lip service to compassion while failing to provide for the least among us. He has the name just doesn't have game.

Posted by Philip at 08:09 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

November 23, 2003

Guys are you having trouble getting a date?

Do you ever wish you could be sure what she is thinking? Have no fear now you too can have a captive audience. There seems to be a limited number of profiles if not pictures.

Posted by Philip at 04:37 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Well now Dell may have blinked.... - Dell to bring some jobs back home

I have several "clients" who I serve in a computer/software support role. One of the chief complaints is they cannot understand the Indian accent. Having spent some time in India I don't really have a problem with the accents but the natural speech rythmns are a bit fast for many American English speakers especially those in the south of our country things...just...move...a bit...slower... there. Interesting to note that individuals will still be routed to calls centers in India where corporate customers will talk to a friendly Texans. It's a start, most likely not a trend. We can hope.

Posted by Philip at 02:48 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

A Couple of Local Guys Organize the world of Travellers - The Ultimate Resource for the Independent Traveller Just found this gem. Seems they threw a party last night and I didn't know I was invited. They are organizing a grass roots travellers association based on the idea that the best travel advice is from other travelers. They have been working on this for several years. They come to Portland via Chicago/Eugene. Check it out travel blogs, Party Blog, Hostel resources local reviews of where to stay, what to see, and who to party with. Be sure and check out the resources for Antartica.

Posted by Philip at 10:17 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

November 21, 2003

Flash Goodness "The Elements"

I don't know if you remember Tom Leher a mathematics professor who taught at Harvard and MIT. He was a master of parody and just plain silliness. This is his tribute to the Periodic Table. Enjoy!

Posted by Philip at 08:37 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Quick go play Twister On-Line

If you catch this link in time you can play tele-twister. Direct live players by voting and cajoling other players into picking positions to defeat the other players.

Posted by Philip at 12:02 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Security for Online Shopping/Banking/Bill Paying

As more of us go online with our shopping and banking we rely on the built in SSL of the HTTP protocol to keep our names and passwords out of the hands of promiscuous packet sniffers. With more and more sites requiring us to login and validate using a password we are at a loss to come up with 10 or more passwords and keep them straight as to which password goes with which site. You can turn on a browser helper to remember what you type at a certain site storing the password for later reference trouble is you can forget that password and you often need a password to change a password also if you are at work vs at home you just might not have the stored password available. So what do you do? You use the same password everywhere or at most two or three passwords usually variations of themselves that you find easy to remember. That way you forget a password and you can try one of the other two, bound to get you in. If you are writing down passwords well that is up to you but a written password requires physical security and we have people in our homes and offices all the time who we may not trust with our wallets. A password written down isn't real secure. I've seen them in the top left drawer or the top right drawer, under the blotter, taped to the screen, in wallets and I wasn't even looking (well sometimes you have to look but that is another story).

So with all the passwords and security on the web these days companies are helping you to remember your password. They offer "hints" that you can answer and if you answer the question correctly you find yourself granted access. That is nice for us aging baby boomer's with minds turning to concrete. So what kinds of hints are offered? It is usually a drop down list that you select from when you first sign up for the site. Mom's maiden name, favorite pet, birthday etc usually personal stuff that only you should know. So far that is all well and good. Some sites however took the questions a bit farther and included public information that could be used as hints. Unaware consumers who selected these hints were exposing themselves to a pretty big security breach. By guessing a user name and selecting the forgot password option the unscrupulous among us could check out the secret question if the question was a matter of public knowledge and an answer presented then the user found themselves in the account rather than in a secondary level of security where the password is sent via email to the address of record. Bad design pure and simple.

Another well known site had you sign in give a password to enter the site. All was well and good right? Wrong the password query was not created correctly so that any password got you in to the site, of course you wouldn't know this unless you deliberately tested a "wrong" password.
Thing is many of us assume that a company doing business on the net does this type of quality control without thinking, I mean come on you are asking people to trust you shouldn't you make sure they can? In the case sited it was a trivial fix to correct the database query that was messed up but the site had operated for some time with this hole. Pretty scary huh? This wasn't a fly by night operation but a leading retailer. Something to think about. The fact that NO one was robbed or taken advantage of should be a lesson in human nature being relatively benign or a case of incredible good luck. You can decide which ever way you want

I'm not trying to scare people, I haven't written a paper check in several years, I pay all my bills electronically use my debit card more than cash. I probably purchase more things online than most everybody I know. But it does pay to be conscious about your online security.

Some tips:

When doing business or filling out online forms look at the browser address bar for the site/form in question. If the site does NOT begin with HTTPS:// then do not fill out the form or do business with that site. Some low budget retailers have not implemented this first level of security for their customers. They ask you to type your credit information in the CLEAR. Thing is depending on where my packet sniffer is it can access every bit of data on that segment of the Ethernet, normally a computer only looks at information destined for itself ignoring packets not addressed to itself but that doesn't mean you can't turn off that feature and look at everything. I was filling out online employment applications when I came across a company that wanted my SSN on an unsecure site. I might want a job, but not that badly.

Passwords... more and more sites are forcing some type of rigor in passwords it will accept, while a pain for you it is a good indication that security is taken seriously at that site. Dictionary words are a no no when it comes to password security. If you are using a word found in Funk & Wagnells or even the Unabridged Oxford dictionary you are asking for trouble. Computers are really good at repetitive tasks like trying every dictionary word in a password field. Passwords should be a mixture of alpha-numeric characters, better yet if allowed throw in some punctuation or other special characters like $ or # or &. Sometimes these are not allowed but you can always try. Passwords that include numbers and special characters make it harder for the bad guys to guess or use a brute force attack against your accounts. If you are going to use numbers the numbers should mean something to you but they should not be about you. Do not use your birth date for example do not use parts of your social security number. You might use say your parents anniversary date or you child's birthday. Something I can't figure out by looking at your drivers license or the phone book. So no current address information or telephone numbers...

The length of the password is up to you many times usually a site will force you to use six characters. The human mind seems to remember phone numbers without too many problems so 7 to 10 characters may be the right amount. For every character you add to your password the level of difficulty in cracking it goes up. Microsoft uses 25 alphanumeric characters for its keys/passwords.

One vs many passwords. What can I say? Ideally you should have a different password for every site you need to have secure access to. If you are like me well that just isn't practical. I do however recommend having more than one. How many keys on your keyring? Some sites will let you guess three times with a wrong password and then lock the login process out for a number of minutes, this is done to prevent the dictionary attacks mentioned above. So if you have three passwords then you can be reasonably sure to get in before being locked out if you can't remember which password goes with which site. Just a suggestion, I myself have more than three passwords but that is me, whatever works for you. If you are going to use one password for everything it better be a good one and it better not be written down <smile>

Password managers can be helpful and useful. Microsoft is trying to create an online repository of your important information available for you to share with whoever you want where ever you are at. It goes by the name of "Passport" and you pretty much have a "passport" if you have a Hotmail account or use the Microsoft Messenger product. How much information you put in this electronic wallet is up to you. I am a fan of Microsoft products I happen to think they mostly do the job for most people. This one I am a little more leery about. I do not store my information online. I do not one click eBay or Amazon. I do not store profiles online. It may take a bit longer to get things done but I keep my financial information under my control for the most part. Sure once I enter the information it is in the system but that is a transaction once over and done with except for an audit trail the information isn' t kept to be used again. Most online retailers give you the option to be "remembered" to save time and keystrokes at some later date. If you have carpal tunnel this may be an excuse. It's up to you. Would you leave your credit card at the store in between purchases? Trusting the store to keep it secure for you? I mean sure you can trust the store but what about the people who work there? Your level of paranoia may differ.

Gator eWallet is spyware supported by annoying nag ads popping under and over your surfing. If you have it, get rid of it, there are other options available.

Your online identity is an extension of yourself, you take steps to protect your person and possesions, make sure your online identity is protected too.

You have heard it before and I'll say it again. Be careful out there.

Posted by Philip at 10:16 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

November 20, 2003

Talking Heads

If you are like me and a casual consumer of TV news, you just don't know all the personalities involved on sight. If you can't wait for the dramatic donouement that follws many news stories and you happen to have your wifi'd laptop handy (never watch TV without your fact checker in reach) there is a site on the web that identifies who is zooming who. Check it out. While you are at it you can vote for your favorite talking head. We all know how the most popular are the most credible people, right?

Posted by Philip at 11:45 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

November 19, 2003

Those wacky Russians

I was sure this was a joke, the fun loving Russki's having fun with us gullible 'Merkins, then I read this. Now I really am confused.

Posted by Philip at 04:41 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Jackson Denies Child Molestation Charge

Oh yeah? What was the headline writer thinking... If it was Jackson Affirms Child Molestation Charge that would be a headline because it expresses the unexpected.
"Jackson Plans Surrender" is an informative headline that could be used to introduce the article cited above. Watching talented people self destruct is no fun. He may look weird and have questionable sexual proclivities but Thriller was a great album arguably the greatest commercial music success to date.

Other headlines you might not have seen Jonathan Brandis found Dead seems the teen heart throb is a victim of success. When I first heard the news I said who? Guess I am getting long in the tooth. Thing is I don't remember seeing a story about him dying anywhere. Speculation is suicide at this point, the coroner has been hanging on to the body for almost a week.

Fame who needs it?

Posted by Philip at 02:52 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

November 18, 2003


I was wondering how non Salon hosted blogs were showing up in the Radio Statistics Page... Looks like I have found out. Involves a bit of Javascript and an invisible graphic served off the Salon statistics server. tricky some people have two images being served up off their blog for twice the hits both credited to different blogs of the same name. And yet it does not appear as if all of the Non Salon hosted blogs use this method even though they are appearing in the Salon Rankings. Looks like I have more detective work to do.

Posted by Philip at 04:50 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Anamorphism, Baroque to the Future

I don't know if you have seen this yet but check the whole online collection of Kurt Wenner's work. As beautiful as it is, it is more a performance than a painting, done in pastels the pieces do not survive long. Like a Tibetan mandela done in sand or a Navaho prayer painting. It is ephemeral. I don't see any calendar of events or bookings. He is available for commisions and works all over the world. If you ever hear his name or see he is going to be somewhere you need to get down and see his stuff. I'd like to post a picture of some of his stuff but better you should just see for yourself on the artist's own site.

Posted by Philip at 03:02 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Sign o' the times?

Purdue University is sponsoring a new bit of learning, preparing it's graduates for the future. If only I had this experience in college, oh wait I did... The Palace was raided and trashed by the Broward County Sherrif's department way back then seems they had the idea that we were all doing drugs and things. I decided that communal living though cheap had it's downside. Being homeless in Florida means sleeping with the skeeters, another thing that drove me to seek a climate more suited to my temperment and less hospitable to the blood sucking, disease carrying vermin that inhabit tropical climes.

But it will never happen to you. I mean if things got bad you would just downsize your life, and that is what homeless people have done. Downsized til all their possesions fit on their back. If you see a shopping cart homeless person well they have a "camper" upscale bums who are limiting their opportunities keeping to the developed camp grounds.

Posted by Philip at 02:22 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

November 17, 2003

Ever play 20 questions?

Over at Common Dreams, Glenn Scherer wants to play the game with President Bust er Bush (sorry about that the h and t are really close together on my keyboard. Trouble is no one can bring Bush to task. I'd certainly like some answers to the twenty questions posed in this essay. In another essay on Common Dreams (a good web site for liberal opinion) Robert Freeman who writes sometimes for Salon as well as the Wall Street Journal , tells us how we might be able to answer our questions with examples from recent history. The gist is what ever the official line is spin it 180 degrees and you will have a good picture of reality. Orwellian "doublespeak" made real.

Repeat the lie until everyone believes it. I am so tired of this.

Posted by Philip at 05:02 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

November 16, 2003

Rest easy Dolphans!

The glorious 1972 Team of the Perfect Season can rest easy. The Bengals ate the Chiefs lunch today and puked up a win. I'm not a big football fan but when I was a kid I lived in the shadow of the Orange Bowl and the Dolphins was the shnits. In 1972 they went all they way and remain today to be the only undefeated NFL team in history. One of the advantages of growing older is being able to take refugein the past.

Posted by Philip at 02:58 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

November 15, 2003

OK What is it?

I know do you?

No fair peeking!

Posted by Philip at 05:27 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Scott Simon does Blogging

'While the unexamined life may not be worth living the overexamined life is not worth reading'. Weekend Edition host Scott Simon takes on kvetching bloggers in an essay delivered today. There doesn't seem to be a direct link (yet) to the essay on line it comes about 20 minutes after the 2nd hour of the show. Bitching blogs are boring seems to be the skinny.

Continue on folks... nothing to see here... move along now boring blog move along

Posted by Philip at 06:36 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

November 13, 2003

Spam it's not just for dinner and e-Mail any more

RadioUserland Blogs have become the target of comment spammers something the MT bloggers have had to deal with for some time. It turns out in Europe and Asia SMS text messaging is being used for spam as well. Here is an article I ran across today. MT Bloggers have a community blacklist that we contribute to, it in turn is incorporated into a despamming spam blocking plugin more and more MT users are installing. In addition to the Blacklist we can also rename our mt-comments.cgi file and avoid most of the spambots running. As a matter of fact I haven't seen any comment spam since I renamed my comment module. RadioUserland bloggers are forced to turn off their comments or serve as unwilling hosts to the pornmeisters. I expect the situation to change it smells like something Dave W will want to engineer a solution for, perhaps there will be a new standard for all bloggers to implement at least something to publish and aggregate their blacklists.

Posted by Philip at 04:41 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Sometimes we get it right


Consider how our tax dollars are spent. NASA has a budget of 15 Billion dollars for the year. The Iraq/Afghanistan war is coming in at around 100 Billion a year give or take 10%. Where would you rather see the money go? High Tech High Wage American jobs? Bombs and Bullets for Iraqis and Afghanis. Coffins for our kids.

Posted by Philip at 02:48 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

In case you missed Jimmy Breslin's Veteran's Day Essay

Published on Tuesday, November 11, 2003 by the Long Island, NY Newsday
The Names They Still Won't Mention
by Jimmy Breslin

The baby had gone into a deep sleep in the warm funeral home and she was flat on her back in the mother's arms as the mother brought her out into the chill night. The baby did not move. Warm air, cold air, it made no difference.

Copyright © 2003, Newsday, Inc

The mother was carrying her out from the wake of Sgt. Joel Perez, dead at 25 when he went down in a Chinook helicopter near Fallujah, Iraq, Nov. 2. The wake was in a funeral home with a neon sign saying, "Funerarias Las Americas."

"I'm the cousin," the woman said.

"His mother called my mother and then my mother told me," she said. "That is how you find out."

She shook her head and said she didn't want to talk anymore and she left.

On the funeral parlor steps were Omar Valentine, 22, and a friend.

"Did you know the guy well?" Omar was asked.

"The wife."

"From school," the friend said.

"We graduated high school together. Essex County Vocational."

"He was coming home to surprise them," the friend said.

That is all they had to say. Nobody else wanted to talk, either. What was there to say?

There is no public display over the death and all these others on the list accompanying this column. Bush and his people sent them out to get killed and now you can't get one of them in Washington to mention these dead. Your government would prefer that night falls and the dead are buried in darkness.

The other Sunday, in high excitement, Sgt. Perez got on a helicopter that was going to start him home to his wife, Milagros, and 15-month-old daughter in time for the wedding anniversary, which was yesterday, the day they put him into the ground in Newark.

He had not told his wife that he was coming home and the others in the family kept it secret. He got on that helicopter because he had a Bronze Star and Purple Heart from the fighting.

Now, yesterday, he was a name on a list of the dead. If I had not been typing out this list, I wouldn't have known that Perez was the short ride away at Newark.

There is no public display over the death and all these others on the list accompanying this column. Bush and his people sent them out to get killed and now you can't get one of them in Washington to mention these dead.

Your government would prefer that night falls and the dead are buried in darkness. We must keep them remote, names on a list, and concentrate on things like patriotism, exporting democracy and shipping freedom - all those big words that Joyce said make us so unhappy.

On this list of our dead is a name that shakes the insides. It is Staff Sgt. Morgan D. Kennon, age 23. He is from Memphis, Tenn. "Kennon was guarding a bank in Mosul, Iraq, when his position came under rocket-propelled grenade attack."

He was from the 101st Airborne in Fort Campbell, Ky. He never had a job. He went from Central High in Memphis to the Airborne. He picked a spot as rough as he could find. Then they sent him to war, proud and strong, and put him in front of a bank like a retired broken-down cop.

This is called nation building in Iraq. Repairing the infrastructure. Putting freedom into the country. Fighting terrorism.

Stand in front of a bank and get shot like he's guarding an ATM in Brooklyn.

Kennon's mother talks to nobody. She is separated from her husband, who is an over-the-road truck driver. His brother, Isaac, was killed when a burglar broke into his home in 1975. Kennon's oldest son, Marcus Kennon, was murdered and his body thrown onto the street in Birmingham in 2000. His girlfriend Sharron White disappeared in 1986 and hasn't been found.

And the other Friday he arrived home from work at 4 p.m. and he was taking off his shoes when there was a knock on the door. Two Army officers were at his front door. Right away, they told him that his son had died but he had not suffered.

They did not tell him that the best thing in his life was put out in front of a bank with all that bravery. And he was shot as if in a common robbery.

He was guarding God. The money that is the true religion of Bush and Cheney and the others who hide in offices while young men in the Army die.

Here is your war so far this week:

Staff Sgt. Paul J. Johnson, 29, of Calumet, Mich. Killed Oct. 20 in Fallujah, Iraq.

Spc. Paul J. Bueche, 19, 131st Aviation Regiment, Army National Guard, killed Oct. 21 when the tire he was changing on Black Hawk helicopter exploded. Home, Daphne, Ala.

Pvt. Jason M. Ward, 25, 2nd Battalion, 70th Armored Regiment, lst Armored Division, Fort Riley, Kansas. Died in Baghdad on Oct. 22 of non-combat related injuries. Home, Tulsa, Okla.

Spc. John P. Johnson, 24, 2nd Battalion, 6th Infantry Regiment, lst Armored Division, Fort Riley, Kansas. Died in Baghdad of non-combat related injuries on Oct. 22. Home, Houston.

Capt. John R. Teal, 31, 2nd Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Hood, Texas. Killed on Oct. 24 when an improvised explosive device struck his convoy in Baghdad. Home, Mechanicsville, Va.

Spc. Jose L. Mora, 26, C Company, lst Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colo. Died of wounds received from an enemy mortar attack Oct. 24 in Samaria, Iraq. Home, Bell Gardens, Calif.

Sgt. Michael S. Hancock, 29, lst Battalion, 320 Field Artillery Regiment, Fort Campbell, Ky. Killed on Oct. 24 when shot while on guard duty in Mosul, Iraq. Home, Yreka, Calif.

Spc. Artimus D. Brassfield, 22, B Company, lst Battalion, 66th Armored Regiment, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Hood, Texas. Died of wounds received from an enemy mortar attack on Oct. 24 in Samaria, Iraq. Home, Home, Flint, Mich.

Staff Sgt. Jamie L. Huggins, 26, C Company, 2nd Battalion, 325th Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C. Killed on Oct. 26 on patrol when his vehicle was hit by improvised explosive device. Home, Hume, Mo.

Pvt. Joseph R. Guerrera, 20, C Company, 2nd Battalion, 325th Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C. Killed when his vehicle was hit with an improvised explosive device while he was on Patrol on Oct. 26 in Baghdad. Home, Dunn, N.C.

Lt. Col. Charles H. Buehring, 40, Army Central Command Headquarters (Forward) Fort McPherson, Ga. Fatally injured during a rocket-propelled grenade attack on the El Rashid Hotel in Baghdad on Oct. 26. Home, Fayetteville, N.C.

Pfc. Rachel K. Bosveld, 19, 537th Military Police Company, V Corps, Giesen, Germany. Killed Oct. 26 during mortar attack on the Abu Ghraib Police Station. Home, Waupun, Wis.

Pfc. Steve Acosta, 19, C Company, 3rd Battalion, 67th Armored Regiment, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Hood, Texas. Died on Oct. 26 from a non-combat gunshot wound. Home, Calexico, Calif.

Pvt. Jonathon L. Falaniko, 20, A Company, 70th Engineer Battalion, lst Armored Division, Fort Hood, Texas. Killed on Oct. 27 while on duty near the police station in downtown Baghdad when a vehicle containing an improvised explosive device detonated. Home, Pago-Pago, American Samoa.

Sgt. Aubrey D. Bell, 33, 214th Military Police Company, Alabama National Guard. Killed in Baghdad on Oct. 27, when an improvised explosive device detonated at his location at the Al Barra Police Station. Home, Tuskegee, Ala.

Spc. Isaac Campoy, 21, 3rd Battalion, 67th Armor Regiment, Fort Hood, Texas. Killed on Oct. 28 in Baghdad, Iraq, when his tank was hit with an improvised explosive device. Home, Douglas, Ariz.

Sgt. Algernon Adams, 36, 122nd Engineer Battalion, Army National Guard. Died on Oct. 28 of non-combat related injuries at Foreward Operating Base, St. Mere, Iraq. Home, Aiken, S.C.

2nd Lt. Todd J. Bryant, 23, lst Battalion, 34th Armored Regiment, lst Infantry Division, Fort Riley, Kansas. Died on Oct. 31 when an improvised explosive device blew up while he was on patrol at Fallujah. Home, Riverside, Calif.

Spc. Maurice Johnson, 21, 326th Engineer Battalion, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) Fort Captvell, Ky. Killed in Mosul, Iraq, on Nov. 1 when when the high mobility multi-purpose wheeled vehicle he was riding in was hit by an improvised explosive device. Home, Levittown, Pa.

1st Lt. Joshua Hurley, 24, 326th Engineer Battalion, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Ky. Killed when vehicle he was riding in was hit by an improvised explosive device. Home, Virgina.

2nd Lt. Benjamin J. Colgan, 30, 2nd Battalion, 3rd Field Artillery Regiment, lst Armored Division, Giessen, Germany. Killed when he was struck with an improvised explosive device while responding to a rocket-propelled grenade attack. Home, Kent, Wash.

The following were killed in the crash of the Chinook helicopter at Al Fallujah, Iraq, Nov. 2:

Sgt. Daniel M. Bader, 28, Air Defense Artillery Battery, 1st Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, Fort Carson, Colo. Home, Colorado Springs, Colo.

Sgt. Ernest G. Bucklew, 33, Support Squadron, 3rd Armored Calvary Regiment, Fort Carson, Colo. Home, Enon Valley, Pa.

Spc. Steven D. Conover, 21, 2nd Battalion, 5th Field Artillery Regiment, Fort Sill, Okla. Home, Wilmington, Ohio.

Sgt. Anthony Dagostino, 20, 16th Signal Battalion, Fort Hood, Texas. Home, Waterbury, Conn.

Spc. Darius T. Jennings, 22, of 16th Signal Battalion, Fort Hood, Texas. Home, Cordova, S.C.

Pfc. Karina S. Lau, 20, of 16th Signal Battalion, Fort Hood, Texas. Home, Livingston, Calif.

Sgt. Keelan L. Moss, 23, of 2nd Battalion, 5th Field Artillery Regiment, Fort Sill, Okla. Home, Houston, Texas.

Spc. Brian H. Penisten, 28, Air Defense Artillery Battery, lst Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, Fort Carson, Colo. Home, Fort Wayne, Ind.

Sgt. Ross A. Pennanon, 36, assigned to 2nd Battalion, 5th Field Artillery Regiment, Fort Sill, Okla. Home, Oklahoma.

Sgt. Joel Perez, 25, 2nd Battalion, 5th Field Artillery Regiment, Fort Sill, Okla. Home, Rio Grande, Puerto Rico.

lst Lt. Brian D. Slavenas, 30, F Company, 106th Aviation Battalion, Army National Guard, Peoria, Ill. Home, Genoa, Ill.

Chief Warrant Officer Bruce A. Smith, 41, Detachment I, Company F, 106th Aviation Battalion, Army National Guard, Davenport, Iowa. Home, West Liberty, Iowa.

Spc. Francis M. Vega, 20, 151st Adjustant General Postal Detachment, Fort Hood, Texas. Home, Fort Buchanan, Puerto Rico.

Staff Sgt. Paul A. Velazquez, 29, 2nd Battalion, 5th Field Artillery Regiment, III Corps Artillery, Fort Sill, Okla.

Staff Sgt. Joe N. Wilson, 30, of 2nd Battalion, 5th Field Artillery Regiment, Fort Sill, Okla. Home, Mississippi.

Sgt. Paul F. Fisher, 39, Detachment I, Company F, 106th Aviation Battalion, Army National Guard, Davenport, Iowa. Home, Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Sgt. Francisco Martinez, 28, of B Detachment, 82nd Soldier Support Battalion (Airborne) Fort Bragg, N.C. Killed on Nov. 4 in convoy when improvised explosive device exploded. Home, Humacao, Puerto Rico.

Sgt. lst Class Jose A. Rivera, 34, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 3rd Battalion, 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment, Fort Bragg, N.C. Killed on Nov. 5 while part of a patrol at Mumulktdyah, Iraq, that came under rocket-propelled grenade and small arms fire. Home, Bayamon, Puerto Rico.

Spc. Robert T. Bensonm, 20, of Company A, lst Battalion, 35th Armored Regiment, lst Armored Division, Smith Barracks, Germany. Died from a non-hostile gunshot wound. Home, Spokane, Wash.

The following were killed when a Black Hawk helicopter was shot down by unknown enemy ordinance Nov. 7 in Tikrit, Iraq:

Chief Chief Warrant Officer (CW5) Sharon T. Swartworth, 43, (identified by Pentagon as "female"), regimental warrant officer for the Judge Advocate General Office, Headquarters Department of the Army, Pentagon. Home, Virginia.

Chief Warrant Officer (CW3) Kyran E. Kennedy, 43, of Boston, Mass.

Staff Sgt. Paul M. Neil II, 30, of S.C.

Sgt. Scott C. Rose, 30, Fayettville, N.C.

Kennedy, Neil and Rose were assigned to 5th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment, 10th Airborne Division, (Air Assault) Fort Campbell, Ky.

Spc. James A. Chance III, 25, of C Company, 890th Engineer Battalion, Army National Guard, Columbia, Miss. Killed Nov. 6 when his vehicle struck a landmine in Husaybah, Iraq. Home, Kokomo, Miss.

Staff Sgt. Morgan D. Kennon, 23, of 3rd Batallion, 327th Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, (Air Assault) Fort Campbell, Ky. Killed on Nov. 7 in Mosul, Iraq, while guarding a bank in downtown when he came under rocket propelled grenade attack. Home, Memphis, Tenn.

Staff Sgt. Mark D. Vasquez, 35, of lst Battalion, 10th Infantry Regiment, lst Infantry Division, Fort Riley, Kansas. Killed on Nov. 8 in Fallujah, Iraq, when a Bradley Fighting Vehicle was struck by an improvised explosive device. Home, Port Huron, Mich.

Spc. James R. Wolfe, 21, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 52nd Engineer Battalion, Fort Carson, Colo. Killed on Nov. 6 in Mosul, Iraq, when an improvised explosive device was detonated in his convoy. Home, Scottsbluff, Neb.

Copyright © 2003, Newsday, Inc

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November 12, 2003

Another New Blogger meet Jill Blevins

Jill Blevins writes at Big Time Food Issues Road Trip and joins the ranks of premier Salon Bloggers. Jill has/had an eating disorder. I don't understand it but then there are a lot of mysteries in my life. What I do get is good writing. Jill has an edge you can sense her own discomfort. I get a sense of what it is like not to be comfortable in your own skin. I don't understand how someone who isn't comfortable in their own skin can write so well. Maybe that is why I am not a writer I am too damned comfortable being me.

Jill and hubby Charly are residents of the Rose City environs, as she puts it the most over priced real estate between the Bay Area and Seattle. Now Lake Oswego is a tony address but most of the 7 figure properties are scattered throughout the metro area these days hidden along the river or settled back into the hills. Where farms used to dominate, now vinyards and golf course prevail, here you find the temples of Mammon.

So stop in and welcome Jill, follow her across country on the back of a Harley. Watch her battle bulimia and her own fun show mirror view of herself. We are our own worst enemy, Jill lets you in and shows you how to be your own best friend.

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November 11, 2003

The guy should get a prize anyway

Faked chili lands joker in hot water


Washington Post

A Texas chili cook-off got heated when one of the contestants turned out to be a crook.

It started as a prank, said Don Eastep, an Illinois retiree. When his brother Larry couldn't attend the Terlingua, Texas, cook-off, Eastep went under his brother's name. But he had no chili. So on cook-off day, he scooped up spoonfuls of chili from some of the 80 or so contestants' pots and entered the mishmash in his brother's cup. He figured he had no chance, but the judges loved it. And when he was declared the winner, Eastep was speechless. "Maybe I was afraid if I would have said something at the time, a Texas lynch mob would have come after me," he said.

Suspicious contestants told the judges that no one had seen Eastep cooking chili. When confronted, Eastep fessed up and turned over his winnings -- trophy, engraved necklace and hand-painted stove -- to the runner-up, a Dallas dentist. In the future, said judge Tom Nall, cook-off participants will be required to show photo identification. And Eastep will be banned from the competition.

They let a murderer go scott free and banish this guy for life from competing in Chili cookoffs. Ah Texas...

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How to get away with murder

Be rich. All or nothing. The guy walks free. Now how many poor white, black and or Hispanic folks get the same deal in Texas? Only in America folks the land of the free.

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November 10, 2003

Browser wars

Christopher at Filchy was showing us IE users what his blog should look like when he created some neat self referential art. Don't you think?
The main differences I can see are how the lines render as broken/dashed lines under Safari these are faded gray lines and there seems to be a missing link to contribute cash.

IE 6.0 is getting long in the tooth... At one time it was the best browser available
now we need a new rev to catch up to the web. Trouble is no one is pushing and if they change it they will probably break it (introduce new security holes).

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Smearing Jessica

She didn't remember being raped as reported by military doctors, she will remember this NY Daily News will report pre-war topless photos are in the hands of Hustler. I don't think Flint will publish but the NY Daily News takes great pride in reporting the existence of the photos. Seems pretty slimy to me. Depart from the script and look what happens.


It is being reported that Pornmiester Larry Flint has ridden to the rescue of Miss Lynch purchasing the prints to save her from embarassment. I guess this isn't blackmail anymore. It's good old fashioned capitalism. Turning a buck on your buddies tits, esprit d'corps lives as exemplified by the army regulars who sold their sister in arms to a porn merchant thinking she would be exposed.
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November 09, 2003

This American Life

This week one of my favorite public radio shows looks at The Annoying Gap Between Theory and Practice one of the sections takes on electronic voting. It airs different times at different places but there will be a link next week to this weeks show. Check out their archives for older shows hard to find a bad one.

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Totally Lunar

The picture I would have taken if the weather co-operated oh and I had the right lens . We caught most of the partial, moon rise occured at sunset here in the rainy, cloudy Portland area, the eclipse already underway. Enjoy if you didn't see it, remember if you did. Photo was found on the weather underground by kenandpaula...

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November 07, 2003

New Electronic Voting Machine Simulator

Guarenteed to give you the exact same feeling as voting for a Democratic candidate on a Diebold Touch Screen device.

Posted by Philip at 01:29 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Dymaxion World View

Buckminster Fuller One Island One Ocean

Link-Fu was run yesterday at Boing Boing. My favorite and soon to be yours Ordo mag... Very nice set of links.

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November 06, 2003

Parkour aka The Spiderman Club

Oh yeah! Damn I wish I was 30 years younger. This is an elaboration of the follow the leader type of stuff we use to do. Rock climbing meets gymnastics meets the urban landscape. David Belle seems to be the leader in this endeavor. This is a Real Audio link with music so wear your headphones at work. Something about moving with utter confidence through your environment it is a total rush, watching it transported me back in time and brought a smile to me. via Boing Boing

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The WingNut Debate Dictionary

If you like word play and follow Atrios et al then check out the WingNut Debate Dictionary complied by Ethel the Blog from articles and comment stream contained on Eschaton.

My favorite? hard to pick one but the new meaning of the word slate as a verb is fun.

slate (v) -- to take a smugly contrarian position in print in a bid to be the koolest kid in the room; to snark for snark's sake.

I think Dennis Miller has slated himself into the wingnut camp. Biting sarchasm replaced by rabid rambling.

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November 05, 2003

We've lost that loving feeling

Goodnight Bobby thanks for the memories. Blue Eyed Soul. Do you believe in Rock and Roll Heaven?

Posted by Philip at 11:42 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Harald would you like to comment?

Seems that when people can hide behind screen names their true feelings come out.. This is rather obvious but it does point out some problems.

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November 04, 2003

New Server, New Bloggers

Digital Crocus my web host has purchased a new server in response to some unexpected outages last week. Hopefully everything will be zippier and more stable into the future. Can't say enough good about this company. For the money they are hard to beat. $30 US buys me 200 MB of web storage and 1GB a month of bandwidth for the year. They support Perl/MySQL based blogs like Moveable Type. They host a number of other bloggers most notably John Robb previously CEO of RadioUserland.

On another note I want to recognize some new Salon Bloggers who leave me in wonder these are a group of talented writers mostly female so who ever was wondering about the blogging gender gap I seem to be drawn to the strong writing I am finding at these places:

Jef Klein's Radio Weblog only a couple of days old but I can tell it is going to be a great one. Beautiful writing about life and relationships.

Katy is Eating Her Husband's Soul I have it on the best authority that this is good satire... unfortunately it spooks me a bit too much, I'm not sure I wasn't married to this self absorbed bitch... but really read it and enjoy and thank your stars that she isn't running your life. And Eric if you need some mushroom recipies drop me a line...

Marya Morevna's Battleground is hard to describe but I look forward to her entries. I know she has been a long term commenter on several Salon Blogs and her wisdom and insights are always welcome additions to your day. She speaks in allegory and fable, she is a Rus at heart if not in fact.

Just started today Thrilling Days of Yesteryear a weblog devoted to the Glory days of radio. The author seems very well informed and a passionate writer. Lot's of history to absorb here.

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November 03, 2003

Why War Press Release


Diebold Documents Spark International Campaign

Swarthmore, Pa. -- When American citizens step into the voting booth tomorrow,
will their votes be counted? Today, with Diebold Elections Systems operating
electronic voting in 37 states, the answer is a resounding "maybe." As a result
of widespread security flaws and the lack of any verifiable check on their
systems, Diebold cannot guarantee the accuracy of any election in which their
machines are present.

An electronic campaign initiated two weeks ago by Why War? has sparked students
from fifty universities nationwide to host copies of internal Diebold memoranda
which demonstrate the insecurity and unreliability of their voting machines.

Why War's website has been innundated with e-mails and visitors from individuals
worldwide pledging their support and offering to defy Diebold's attempts at
suppression by hosting mirrors of the provocative documents.

"We've been receiving more hits than ever before," said Why War? member Micah
White, who originally found and posted the memos in October. "Our goal when we
started this campaign was to provide public access to this information, and
we've been so successful that Why War? recently had to purchase higher bandwith
to accommodate the sheer number of people who wanted to read the memos."

Why War? has built a coalition of concerned citizens across the nation who will
soon be taking charge of the campaign against Diebold. "This is not a partisan
issue," said Ivan Boothe, another member. "The people who have taken the
initiative to host these documents come from all parts of the political spectrum."

In response to growing national interest, the coalition will soon be moving its
center of operations from Why War's website,, to a new location
devoted specifically to voting issues and resisting Diebold's attempts to keep
this information a secret.

Why War? believes that the Diebold documents are akin to the Pentagon Papers in
their potential to reveal systemic corruption within the American election
process. The task now at hand is to analyze the content of these documents.

More information about the campaign:

List of municipalities that use Diebold machines:

Press contacts:
Ivan Boothe, Swarthmore College,, 267.496.6819
Joseph Lorenzo Hall, University of California-Berkeley,,
C. Scott Ananian, Massachusetts Institute of Technology,,
Derek Slater, Harvard University,, 617.493.0039
Austin Heap, Bentley College,, 614.477.6579
Marquis Eusung Hwang, University of Chicago,,
Sechyi Laiu, Grinnell College,, 641.269.3278
Matthew Hornyak, Carnegie Mellon University,, 412.726.6968

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