June 27, 2004

The New York Times > Week in Review > Fear Factor: In an Age of Terror, Safety Is Relative

The New York Times > Week in Review > Fear Factor: In an Age of Terror, Safety Is Relative:

Continue profiling people and doing random checks. Profiling works as a legitimate tool of law enforcement. Keep doing it, security people.

"Maybe there's a way to avoid subway passenger screening. Starting in July, Boston transit police will hand-search the packages of travelers on the storied T subway system. Riders will continue to board unscreened. Officers, some with explosives-sniffing dogs, will wander through cars and demand that passengers open packages, briefcases or backpacks. Already there is an excruciating legal dispute about whether the officers should be scanning for those who fit terrorist profiles, or making random searches: that is, ordering grandma to show what's in her purse while ignoring the Middle Eastern-looking young man with the backpack."

The New York Times > Opinion > Op-Ed Columnist: Timeout for Imagination

The New York Times > Opinion > Op-Ed Columnist: Timeout for Imagination:

Thomas has climbed into his ivory tower and his wishful thinking is truly wonderful. The war on terrorism must be pursued and won at all costs. Our freedom is at stake and these people must be eliminated. Of course we want America to be the bastion of hope and not a fortress, but the fight has been brought to us and we must take it to them fiercely and without compromise. Anything else is wishful thinking.

However, I will read the new book, Tom. I do value your insights, thinking and access to people around the world.

"Bush Administration Calls an End to the 'War on Terrorism.' No, I haven't taken leave of my senses on the way out the door. I realize that we have enemies and they need to be confronted. But I do not want this to be all that America is about in the world anymore, and that is what has happened under this administration. I don't want the rest of my career to be about an America that exports fear, not hope, and ends up importing everyone else's fears as a result. I don't want it to be about explaining to young Chinese why my government can't give them student visas anymore. I don't want it to be about visiting U.S. Embassies around the world and finding them so isolated behind barbed wire, they might as well not be there at all. Defeating 'them' has begun to define 'us' in too many ways.
America is so much more than just 'Anti-Al-Qaeda Inc.' � but our whole identity in the world, and too many aspects of our way of life, are getting contorted around that mission. If we're really having a relevant presidential campaign, I'll come back and find the candidates debating, not who is the 'toughest' guy � the jungle is full of them � but who can be the toughest guy while preserving the best of what we had and the best of who we are. "

The New York Times > International > Middle East > Aides Say Memo Backed Coercion for Qaeda Cases

Please define the rule of law pertaining to terrorists who crash planes into buildings to kill as many people as possible. And how does it apply to those who take innocent hostages and behead them in the name of Allah and their belief in their cause? The rule of law in a free society was crafted to deal with criminals not terrorists. There is a BIG difference.

Most of the media, especially the NYTImes, seems intent on shining as much light as possible on the misdeeds of our leaders in fighting terror. The role of the media is to inform us about what our nation's leaders do, but we must decide if the actions are proper in relation to the threats againstt us.

I believe we should use all feasible tactics to get information from terrorist leaders. Of course there's a risk that our intelligence and military will abuse that power in other circumstances, so we must be watchful for that.

June 26, 2004

The New York Times > Business > Snow Denies Any Pressure Over United

Ho Ho! Believe this and Christmas will come in July.

Yahoo! News - Greens Reject Endorsement for Ralph Nader

More splintering of the fringe left. Does anyone really care? The Dems do because they want these voters. The Republicans would never get them.

Burlington's McNeil Wood-fired Power Generating Station

The numerous community and state benefits recounted by John Irving in his history of the McNeil Wood-Chip Generating Station (BFP June 26, 2004) are certainly indicators of success . I have been a supporter of wood-fired electrical generation for Vermont since the plan was conceived.

However, a key fact missing is the cost of that power generation. The history of the plant, and any decision about future wood fired plants or other renewable sources, is incomplete without costs compared to power supply alternatives during McNeil's 20-year operation.

The New York Times > International > Middle East > Army Used Speed and Might, Plus Cash, Against Shiite Rebel

Good to see, for a change, some in depth NYT reporting of how we conduct ourselves to get something good done in Iraq.

June 24, 2004

Cisco pushes wireless kit for city services | CNET News.com

This Cisco offering, if widely adopted by municipalities, seems to argue against the obsolescence of Wi-Fi as embodied in the 802.11 a/b/g standards.

Forbes.com: Wi-Fi's Wobbly Future

George Gilder is back this time predicting Wi-Fi is a flash in the pan. I agree that it's an interim technology only if the biggies like Verizon, Cingular, AT&T and Sprint can get the spectrum and the technology in place for geographically continuous coverage for high speed broadband access to the Internet in place at a reasonable price. Verizon's $80/month price in Washington and San Diego is too high for consumers. Nevertheless, the 'community' aspect of Wi-Fi will keep it going for a long while.

The New York Times > Business > Media & Advertising > Senate Votes to Repeal Media Rules

I'm really torn on this issue.

On one hand I think that companies should be able to buy and sell in a free enterprise capitalistic system. My view on this side of the question is bolstered by the continued proliferation of the Internet into the lives of individuals and the commensurate growth of information, news and opinion sources that are Internet-based.

On the other side of the question, I know that the mainstream media remains the opinion shaper in our American culture and that agglomeration potentially (not certain this is always the case) reduces the number of voices. Nevertheless, new sources continue to spring up representing many diverse, frequently opposing, philosophies. This is a good thing.

I think, on balance, I come sown on the side of allowing media consolidation, but with some reasonable 'rules of the road.'

The quotes below reasonably sum up the different viewpoints. At this point, I tend to favor the Powell view.
"The architect of the new rules, Michael K. Powell, the
chairman of the F.C.C., has said they are vital in light of
a series of court opinions questioning the old rules and a
marketplace where consumers can subscribe to cable and
satellite television services with hundreds of channels and
delve into the limitless offerings of the Internet.

But critics have said that a small handful of companies
dominate the programming on the airwaves and that
consolidation in the industry has led to a decline in the
diversity of voices and coverage of local news and
community events."

June 23, 2004

The New York Times > Business > AT&T to Stop Competing in 7 States After Ruling on Fees

This journalist makes rightful use of the word 'subsidy.' It's bad public policy to foster contrived competition by forcing one provider, the network owner, to sell services to a competitor below cost. It makes no difference if that provider has nearly all the market share. The only real competition long-term is by providers with alternate networks or different technology.

Senate bill bans P2P networks | CNET News.com

It's about time. Piracy is piracy. Those that encourage (induce it, is the legal term of preference) it should also be penalized. Let's see if Congress can get it done.

The New York Times > Technology > 4 Rivals Almost United on Ways to Fight Spam

Good news on the SPAM front. We need a technical solution that plays off the basic Internet infrastructure, not an administrative one run by bureaucrats. The FTC wisely rejected a Do-Not-Send list approach.

PCWorld.com - Broadband Becomes a Campaign Issue

The debate continues over the best way for America to encourage more rapid deployment of broadband Internet access, particularly in rural areas. The ideas include less regulation, tax credits and other subsidies, more wireless spectrum, treating DSL and cable broadband equally regarding regulation and taxes. The debate is joined by both Presidential candidates and their parties.

The best approach is one of less rather than more regulation. The basic technologies of wireless and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) are clearly included in federal rather than state oversight/regulation. States should refrain from attempting to regulate or tax the deployment of both technologies.

Vermont's Legislature recently voted funding for demonstration projects using wireless technologies for high speed broadband access. Montpelier, the state capital project is just now getting underway. These are exciting times! I hope there's a viable business model.

What I want is the ability to cruise America's highways in my RV and have nearly continuous broadband access from my laptop, just as from my cell phone, for a reasonable price. And, of course, I want the RV parks to offer broadband access. Verizon's deployment of 3G EV-DO technology may make that possible, but will the price be reasonable for consumers. Here's hoping...

June 22, 2004

Verizon Begins Deploying Packet Switches to Provide Local Phone Service

Verizon has begun deploying packet switching and for VoIP. My friend, Paul, announces the first deployment of packet switches on the West coast. Thus begins the BIG move. The new era is launched with new services and Internet all around. Coupled with fiber to the premises, we will have a brand new last mile and local switching network.

The Shoe Bomber's Sentence

Ruling by Judge William Young U.S. District Court.

Prior to sentencing, the Judge asked the defendant if he had anything to say.

His response: After admitting his guilt to the court for the record, Reid also admitted his "allegiance to Osama bin Laden, to Islam, and to the religion of Allah," defiantly stated "I think I ought not apologize for my actions," and told the court "I am at war with your country."

Judge Young then delivered the statement quoted below, a stinging condemnation of Reid in particular and terrorists in general. January 30, 2003, United States vs. Reid. Judge Young: "Mr. Richard C. Reid, hearken now to the sentence the Court imposes upon you.

On counts 1, 5 and 6 the Court sentences you to life in prison in the custody of the United States Attorney General.

On counts 2, 3, 4 and 7, the Court sentences you to 20 years in prison on each count, the sentence on each count to run consecutive with the other. That's 80 years.

On count 8 the Court sentences you to the mandatory 30 years, consecutive to the 80 years just imposed.

The Court imposes upon you for each of the eight counts a fine of $250,000 for the aggregate fine of $2 million.

The Court accepts the government's recommendation with respect to restitution and orders restitution in the amount of $298.17 to Andre Bousquet and $5,784 to American Airlines. The Court imposes upon you the $800 special assessment. The Court imposes upon you five years supervised release simply because the law requires it. But the life sentences are real life sentences so I need go no further. This is the sentence that is provided for by our statutes. It is a fair and just sentence. It is a righteous sentence.

Let me explain this to you. We are not afraid of you or any of your terrorist coconspirators, Mr. Reid. We are Americans. We have been through the fire before. There is all too much war talk here. And I say that to everyone with the utmost respect. Here in this court, where we deal with individuals as individuals, and care for individuals as individuals. As human beings, we reach out for justice. You are not an enemy combatant. You are a terrorist. You are not a soldier in any war. You are a terrorist. To give you that reference, to call you a soldier, gives you far too much stature. Whether it is the officers of government who do it or your attorney who does it, or that happens to be your view, you are a terrorist. And we do not negotiate with terrorists. We do not treat with terrorists. We do not sign documents with terrorists. We hunt them down one by one and bring them to justice.

So war talk is way out of line in this court. You are a big fellow. But you are not that big. You're no warrior. I know warriors. You are a terrorist; a species of criminal guilty of multiple attempted murders. In a very real sense, State Trooper Santiago had it right when you first were taken off that plane and into custody and you wondered where the press and where the TV crews were, and he said you're no big deal. You're no big deal.

What your counsel, what your able counsel and what the equally able United States attorneys have grappled with and what I have as honestly as I know how tried to grapple with, is why you did something so horrific. What was it that led you here to this courtroom today? I have listened respectfully to what you have to say. And I ask you to search your heart and ask yourself what sort of unfathomable hate led you to do what you are guilty and admit you are guilty of doing. And I have an answer for you. It may not satisfy you. But as I search this entire record, it comes as close to understanding as I know. It seems to me you hate the one thing that is most precious. You hate our freedom. Our individual freedom. Our individual freedom to live as we choose, to come and go as we choose, to believe or not believe as we individually choose.

Here, in this society, the very winds carry freedom. They carry it everywhere from sea to shining sea. It is because we prize individual freedom so much that you are here in this beautiful courtroom. So that everyone can see, truly see that justice is administered fairly, individually, and discreetly.

It is for freedom's sake that your lawyers are striving so vigorously on your behalf and have filed appeals, will go on in their representation of you before other judges. We are about it Because we all know that the way we treat you, Mr. Reid, is the measure of our own liberties.

Make no mistake though. It is yet true that we will bear any burden, pay any price, to preserve our freedoms. Look around this courtroom. Mark it well. The world is not going to long remember what you or I say here. Day after tomorrow it will be forgotten. But this, however, will long endure.

Here in this courtroom and courtrooms all across America, the American people will gather to see that justice, individual justice - justice, not war, individual justice is in fact being done. The very President of the United States through his officers will have to come into courtrooms and lay out evidence on which specific matters can be judged, and juries of citizens will gather to sit and judge that evidence democratically, to mold and shape and refine our sense of justice.

See that flag, Mr. Reid? That's the flag of the United States of America. That flag will fly there long after this is all forgotten. That flag stands for freedom. You know it always will.

"Custody Officer. Stand him down."

June 21, 2004

Net visionary urges e-mail ID standard - News - ZDNet

An authentication solution seems to make sense to thwart spam, but how will a common infrastructure be mandated across country boundaries? Who will serve as the master authority for this? Seems a likely job for the WWW Consortium to develop the protocol, but who will make the investments?

June 20, 2004

CNN.com - Militants threaten to behead South Korean hostage - June 20, 2004

The Korean soldiers I knew in Vietnam were real fighters and solid allies. I hope time and terrorism have not softened them up. The Koreans will be a big help in Iraq. Seems to me they owe us big time for the American blood shed and for the defensive forces we have deployed all these years to defend their country.

My Way News

Seems the Saudis may be serious about fighting terrorists. Four more gone. That's good. Now they must unravel the unholy alliance the Saud family has with the Wahabbi (sp?) gang and their teaching of radical Islam.

The Moderate Voice: A New Dark Mark For France: Many Jews Could Leave

France's Muslim population is growing and at the same time anti-semitic incidents continue to increase. Seems these internal problems create such pain for the French government, they are powerless to help fight a global war on terror. While this may be part of the problem, I don't think the French leaders have the motivation to fight terrorism globally.

My boycott of French goods continues.

Yahoo! News - Researchers Isolate Copper-Extracting Bacteria

Exciting news that minerals can be worked from ore with bacteria. Wonder what if any side effects occur?

Fathers Day

A wonderful day of sunshine and food at my son's for eats, including steamers, steak and chicken and all the fixins, prepared by Laura and friends.

June 19, 2004

Guardian Unlimited | Special reports | Bush told he is playing into Bin Laden's hands

Weird opinion. If correct, it's imperative we step up the pressure on Bin Laden until he and other leaders are eradicates, no matter how long it takes.

New York Times - E-Mail this article

This makes Kerry and other politicians a supporter of evil in the view of their church leaders. How will they explain their way out?

June 18, 2004

Yahoo! News - Saudi Qaeda Chief Killed After Beheading American

"They're trying to get us to retreat from the world. America will not retreat," said President Bush (news - web sites), who declared war on al Qaeda after a mainly Saudi group attacked the United States on September 11 three years ago. "America will not be intimidated by these kinds of extremist thugs."

Vice President Dick Cheney (news - web sites) said: "America will hunt down the killers one by one and destroy them."

I'm waiting for John Kerry's equally strong statement. Bush and Cheney have it right. These dogs must be eradicated.

Abdulaziz al-Muqrin's group posted photographs of the 49-year-old aviation engineer's severed head on a Web site, six days after he was seized. The Saudi government had refused to free Islamist prisoners by a Friday deadline set by the cell.

Shortly afterwards, as Muqrin and two other top militants tried to deposit Johnson's body in the capital Riyadh, they were surrounded by Saudi security men and gunned down, a security source said.

Muqrin, an angry young man driven by revenge and hatred for the United States and its Arab allies, was Saudi Arabia's most wanted al Qaeda leader. His death will be portrayed as a major blow to Saudi-born Osama bin Laden (news - web sites) by the kingdom's rulers, once chided by their U.S. allies as being soft on terrorism.

"This is a very prompt and telling demonstration of their (Saudi) commitment to defeating al Qaeda. We are going to see justice is done," a State Department official said.

Johnson was the third American killed in Riyadh in the past 10 days, stepping up pressure on thousands of U.S. citizens and other foreigners vital to the economy of the world's biggest oil exporter and on the Saudi royal family, which bin Laden has sworn to overthrow for its close alliance with Washington.

"They're trying to get us to retreat from the world. America will not retreat," said President Bush (news - web sites), who declared war on al Qaeda after a mainly Saudi group attacked the United States on September 11 three years ago. "America will not be intimidated by these kinds of extremist thugs."

Vice President Dick Cheney (news - web sites) said: "America will hunt down the killers one by one and destroy them."

Power Shift

Alvin Toffler was one of the most visionary thinkers in the late 20th century. While cleaning out my office on my last day of employment at Resolution. Inc., I happened to open this book PowerShift published in 1990 and turned to the last few lines which I underlined when I read it 14 years ago.

"The most important powershift of all, therefore is not from one person, party, institution, or nation to another. It is the hidden shift in the relationships between violence, wealth, and knowledge as societies speed toward their collision with tomorrow.

This is the dangerous, exhilarating secret of the Powershift Era."

Terrorism demonstrates the danger. The exhilaration was seen to an exuberant degree during the dot-com boom. In the final chapter of the book, Toffler discusses the need for order, yet limited control by states. Terrorism destroys the sense of security at relatively little economic cost to the terrorists (they consider their life expendable). Over-control by a state destroys economic vigor. I hope we in the US can find the right balance between the relentless war on terror and the ability to continue a vibrant and exciting culture. We must find that delicate balance that may require sacrifice of treasure, hopefully not basic freedoms.

CNN.com - Saudi hostage deadline looms - Jun 18, 2004

This is why no compromise can be considered in the war against terror. It irks me no end that in the midst of this evil the US plays internal political games while there are merciless, vicious people who will kill us at every opportunity.

June 17, 2004

Intel, Proxim team up for WiMax gear | CNET News.com

WiMax appears to be the next big thing in broadband wireless access. If reliability and coverage is substantial, this may take off. Vermont has appropriated some seed $ for five municipalities to compete for grants to provide wide area coverage in the next two years. I hope the client device enablement is cheap.

My Way News - Clinton Hasn't Changed

Clinton lacks any morals and has no sense of right and wrong. What a shame a man of his talents is so rotten on the inside. He is not fit to be a leader.

Reuters News Article -Rumsfeld Acknowledges Hiding Iraqi Prisoner

The rules of war have changed. The war on terror requires stern measures for which the rules of previous wars may be outdated.

Other than the kamikazes who targeted ships and military installations, were suicide bombers in WW II targeting civilians? The world has changed. So must the rules of war.

June 16, 2004

Bell tolling for DSL? - News - ZDNet

On and on the battle rages. Bells should be properly compensated for investments it makes and services it is required to provide.

June 15, 2004

The War We Have Just begun to Fight

This catalog of battles in the war reminds us that terrorism must be struck down. The politics of it matter little. The will to fight and eradicate terrorists and find ways to change the radical Islam breeding grounds in the Arab world must transcend political lines. It disturbs me that many Americans don't seem up to the fight. Thankfully, some leaders are, including Bush. Kerry is not one of them. Neither is Dean.

People must see this as a war. What frustrates me particularly is Kerry, Dean and others criticizing the conduct of the war in Afghanistan and Iraq, yet offering no viable plan for a different approach. They are unworthy of leading this country if they refuse to face the fact that we must press hard the war on terror...and it is a war. There is no compromise with the radical Islamists. I think often of the time we attended the Daniel Pipes lecture in UVM's Ira Allen Chapel and how the kids opposed what he said and refused to recognize the truth of what we face.


You have to read the catalogue of events in this brief piece. Then, ask yourself how anyone can take the position that all we have to do is bring our troops home from Iraq, sit back, re-set the snooze alarm, go back to sleep, and no one will ever bother us again.

In case you missed it, World War III began in November 1979... that alarm has been ringing for years.

U.S. Navy Captain Phil Ouimette, is the Executive Officer at Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Florida. Here is a copy of the speech he gave last month.

It is an accurate account of why we are in so much trouble today and why this action is so necessary.


That's what we think we heard on the 11th of September 2001 (When more than 3,000 Americans were killed -AD) and maybe it was, but I think it should have been "Get Out of Bed!". In fact, I think the alarm clock has been buzzing since 1979 and we have continued to hit the snooze button and roll over for a few more minutes of peaceful sleep since then.

It was a cool fall day in November 1979 in a country going through a religious and political upheaval when a group of Iranian students attacked and seized the American Embassy in Tehran. This seizure was an outright attack on American soil; it was an attack that held the world's most powerful country hostage and paralyzed a Presidency. The attack on this sovereign U. S. Embassy set the stage for events to follow for the next 23 years.

America was still reeling from the aftermath of the Vietnam experience and had a serious threat from the Soviet Union when then, President Carter, had to do some thing. He chose to conduct a clandestine raid in the desert.

The ill-fated mission ended in ruin, but stood as a symbol of America's inability to deal with terrorism.

America's military had been decimated and downsized/right sized since the end of the Vietnam War. A poorly trained, poorly equipped and poorly organized! zed military was called on to execute a complex mission that was doomed from the start.

Shortly after the Tehran experience, Americans began to be kidnapped and killed throughout the Middle East. America could do little to protect her citizens living and working abroad. The attacks against US soil continued.

In April of 1983 a large vehicle packed with high explosives was driven into the US Embassy compound in Beirut. When it explodes, it kills 63 people. The alarm went off again and America hit the Snooze Button once more.

Then just six short months later a large truck heavily laden down with over 2500 pounds of TNT smashed through the main gate of the US Marine Corps headquarters in Beirut and 241 US servicemen are killed. America mourns her dead and hit the Snooze Button once more.

Two months later in December 1983, another truck loaded with explosives is driven into the US Embassy in Kuwait, and America! continues her slumber.

The following year, in September 1984, another van was driven into the gates of the US Embassy in Beirut and America slept.

Soon the terrorism spreads to Europe. In April 1985 a bomb explodes in a restaurant frequented by US soldiers in Madrid.

Then in August a Volkswagen loaded with explosives is driven into the main gate of the US Air Force Base at Rhein-Main, 22 are killed and the snooze alarm is buzzing louder and louder as US interests are continually attacked.

Fifty-nine days later a cruise ship, the Achille Lauro is hijacked and we watched as an American in a wheelchair is singled out of the passenger list and executed.

The terrorists then shift their tactics to bombing civilian airliners when they bomb TWA Flight 840 in April of 1986 that killed 4 and the most tragic bombing! ng, Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988, killing 259

Clinton treated these terrorist acts as crimes; in fact we are still trying to bring these people to trial. These are acts of war.

The wake up alarm is getting louder and louder. The terrorists decide to bring the fight to America. In January 1993, two CIA agents are shot and killed as they enter CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia.

The following month, February 1993, a group of terrorists are arrested after a rented van packed with explosives is driven into the underground parking garage of the World Trade Center in New York City. Six people are killed and over 1000 are injured. Still this is a crime and not an act of war?

The Snooze alarm is depressed again. Then in November 1995 a car bomb explodes at a US military complex in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia killing seven service men
and women.

A few months later in June of 1996, another truck bomb explodes only 35 ! yards from the US military compound in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. It destroys the Khobar Towers, a US Air Force barracks, killing 19 and injuring over 500. The terrorists are getting braver and smarter as they see that America does not respond decisively.

They move to coordinate their attacks in a simultaneous attack on two US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. These attacks were planned with precision. They kill 224. America responds with cruise missile attacks and goes back to sleep.

The USS Cole was docked in the port of Aden, Yemen for refueling on 12 October 2000, when a small craft pulled along side the ship and exploded killing 17 US Navy Sailors. Attacking a US War Ship is an act of war, but we sent the FBI to investigate the crime and went back to sleep.

And of course you know the events of 11 September 2001. Most Americans think this was the first attack against US soil or in America. How wrong they are.

America has been under a constant attack since 1979 and we chose to hit the snooze alarm and roll over and go back to sleep.

In the news lately we have seen lots of finger pointing from every high officials in government over what they knew and what they didn't know.

But if you've read the papers and paid a little attention I think you can see exactly what they knew. You don't have to be in the FBI or CIA or on the National Security Council to see the pattern that has been developing since 1979.

The President is right on when he says we are engaged in a war. I think we have been in a war for the past 23 years and it will continue until we as a people decide enough is enough.

America needs to "Get out of Bed" and act decisively now. America has been changed forever. We have to be ready to pay the price and make the sacrifice to ensure our way of life continues. We cannot afford to keep hitting the snooze button again and again and roll over and go back to sleep.

After the attack on Pearl Harbor, Admiral Yamamoto said "...it seems all we have done is awakened a sleeping giant." This is the message we need to disseminate to terrorists around the world.

Support Our Troops and support President Bush for having the courage, political or militarily, to address what so many who preceded him didn't have the backbone to do both Democrat and Republican. This is not a political thing to be hashed over in an election year this is an ! AMERICAN thing. This is about our Freedom and the Freedom of our children in years to come.

Please forward this to as many people as you can especially to the young people and all those who dozed off in history class and who seem so quick to protest such a necessary military action.

The New York Times > Technology > Federal Agency Declines to Create Do-Not-Spam Registry

The FTC has it right. A list won't work. The only solution is a technical one from the big boys in the software business.

June 14, 2004

To Kill an American

Subject: Kill an American

You probably missed it in the rush of news last week, but there was actually a report that someone in Pakistan had published in a newspaper an offer of a reward to anyone who killed an American, any American.

So an Australian dentist wrote the following to let everyone know what an American is, so they would know when they found one. (Good on ya, mate!!!!)

An American is English, or French, or Italian, Irish, German, Spanish, Polish, Russian or Greek. An American may also be Canadian, Mexican, African, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Australian, Iranian, Asian, or Arab, or Pakistani, or Afghan. An American may also be a Cherokee, Osage, Blackfoot, Navaho, Apache, Seminole or one of the many other tribes known as native Americans.

An American is Christian, or he could be Jewish, or Buddhist, or Muslim. Infact, there are more Muslims in America than in Afghanistan. The only difference is that in America they are free to worship as each of them chooses.

An American is also free to believe in no religion. For that he will answer only to God, not to the government, or to armed thugs claiming to speak for the government and for God.

An American is from the most prosperous land in the history of the world. The root of that prosperity can be found in the Declaration of Independence, which recognizes the God given right of each person the pursuit of happiness.

An American is generous. Americans have helped out just about every other nation in the world in their time of need. When Afghanistan was overrun by the Soviet army 20 years ago, Americans came with arms and supplies to enable the people to win back their country!

As of the morning of September 11, Americans had given more than any other nation to the poor in Afghanistan.

Americans welcome the best, the best products, the best books, the best music, the best food, the best athletes. But they also welcome the least. The national symbol of America, The Statue of Liberty, welcomes your tired and your poor, the wretched refuse of your teeming shores, the homeless, tempest tossed.

These in fact are the people who built America. Some of them were working in the Twin Towers the morning of September 11, 2001 earning a better life for their families. I've been told that the World Trade Center victims were from at least 30 other countries, cultures, and first languages, including those that aided and abetted the terrorists.

So you can try to kill an American if you must. Hitler did. So did General Tojo, and Stalin, and Mao Tse-Tung, and every bloodthirsty tyrant in the history of the world. But, in doing so you would just be killing yourself, because Americans are not a particular people from a particular place. They are the embodiment of the human spirit of freedom. Everyone who holds to that spirit, everywhere, is an American.

Author unknown

Ed Brill Email vs. RSS

The sands continue to shift as the Internet matures. I find RSS very helpful and expect that it will become more useful as time and talent are applied to it. Nevertheless, I expect to be using email for the rest of my natural life.

BBC NEWS | UK | Magazine | The seven-year-old bloggers

I spotted this on Dave Winer's Scripting News and he included it for the obvious reference to Manila, Radio's (from his company, Userland )engine.

But I'll bet kids, properly guided, really can benefit from the use of simple blogs and it gives a chance for them to practice and perhaps inspire them to good writing, not to mention all the peripheral learning that happens. The teacher, John Mill's site is here.

The New York Times > Opinion > Op-Ed Columnist: Taking the High Ground

A realistic piece of advice from Thomas to the Israelis. But can the rightists in the Likud be persuaded this is in their best interests? Can the Gaza settlers be convinced? What would be provided for them and where?

The New York Times > Technology > Phone Giants Are Projected to Dominate Internet Calls

The inexorable march to VoIP has begun. With 600,000 customers, the IP phone services are beginning to make inroads into the circuit switched marketplace, but there's still a long way to go.

June 12, 2004

The New York Times > Washington > Excerpts From the Eulogies: Recollections of Hope, Humor and One Very Big Heart

With the high attendance by leaders and 'ordinary' Americans and the meticulous attention to detail, President Reagan's funeral is a glorious testament to the man, his accomplishments, and the nation that spawned and honored him.

Well done, America!

His family's eulogies last night were very appropriate and the interment ceremony was wonderfully moving. The Christian basis for all this provided the opportunity for some of the Gospel to be made known to the world.

With such a display of Christianity, America's enemies and the enemies of God must have been angry.

June 11, 2004

Thoughts About Freedom

This is making the rounds...

The following passage is from a sermon by John Hagee of Cornerstone Church in San Antonio:

I want you to close your eyes and picture in your mind the soldier at Valley Forge, as he holds his musket in his bloody hands. He stands barefoot in the snow, starved from lack of food, wounded from months of battle and emotionally scarred from the eternity away from his family surrounded by nothing but death and carnage of war. He stands though, with fire in his eyes and victory on his breath. He looks at us now in anger and disgust and tells us this...

I gave you a birthright of freedom born in the Constitution and now your children graduate too illiterate to read it.

I fought in the snow barefoot to give you the freedom to vote and you stay at home because it rains!

I left my family destitute to give you the freedom of speech and you remain silent on critical issues, because it might be bad for business.

I orphaned my children to give you a government to serve you and it has stolen democracy from the people.

It's the soldier, not the reporter who gives you the freedom of the press.

It's the soldier, not the poet who gives you the freedom of speech. It's the soldier, not the campus organizer who allows you to demonstrate.

It's the soldier, who salutes the flag, serves the flag, whose coffin is draped with the flag that allows the protester to burn the flag!!!

"Lord, hold our troops in your loving, hands. Protect them as they protect us. Bless them and their families for the selfless acts they perform for us in our time of need. Amen."

Yahoo! News - Text of Bush's Tribute to Reagan

"And where does that strength come from? Where is that courage learned? It is the faith of a boy who read the Bible with his mom. It is the faith of a man lying in an operating room who prayed for the one who shot him before he prayed for himself. It is the faith of a man with a fearful illness who waited on the Lord to call him home.

Now death has done all that death can do, and as Ronald Wilson Reagan goes his way, we are left with the joyful hope he shared. In his last years he saw through a glass darkly. Now he sees his savior face to face."

I can only say...Amen!

June 10, 2004

Yahoo! News - U.S. General: Iraq Police Training a Flop

This general has the guts to admit he and we failed to train the Iraqis for their defense and security. Nevertheless, if Iraqis won't fight for their own security, their future is bleak as a 'free' society. I wonder if they have the motivation to change their country? Perhaps we expect too much.

Perhaps Wolfowitz is a brilliant dunce.

Google mulls RSS support | CNET News.com

This is too important a technology standard to be consumed in the fires of geek arguments. Better that active collaboration to create one standard begin soon. Perhaps Ruby and Winer should have dinner together and invite Google and Microsoft.

The New York Times > Arts > $50 Billion Question: World, Where to Begin?

A very interesting approach to identifying big world problems that would diminish if financial resources were targeted to them. This Dane may be controversial, but he's brilliant.

The New York Times > Business > States' Big Role in Phone Rates May Be Only a Cameo

I agree with Powell that the federal rules should trump the anachronistic approach of state determined access charges. Consumers are moving rapidly away from wireline telephony and to wireless where none of the old rules apply. The rapid trend to wireless Internet access to broadband via Wi-Fi and other approaches also works against the old state regulatory paradigm.

The Internet changes everything, not least the regulatory regime that grew up with the old Bell System. By nature the Internet and the services provided on it is an interstate/interLATA network and should not be subject to state jurisdictional rules. To do otherwise would lead to Balkanization of the Internet in the U.S, an untenable situation.

Girl 'with mental age of baby' votes

Wonder if this is happening in US?

June 7, 2004

Why the FCC should die | Perspectives | CNET News.com

While a sudden death may be a bit radical, it is time the functions of the FCC were reviewed keeping only the important needs for the FCC.

A great deal of business strategy rests on the regulation of the FCC. That can't be undone quickly.

That serious consideration exists for abolishment is intriguing.