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Friday, August 31, 2007
CA Internet Security Suite 2007 Spreading Like Wildfire
So I'm going through my daily allotment of pseudo-spam and I come across something that looked reasonable interesting - namely this refubished eMachines T3604 that TigerDirect will sell you for $199.99 after rebate and certain other conditions.
Of course it comes with an awe-inspiring 512MB of RAM running Windows Vista Home Basic (have they lost their minds?), a whopping huge 120GB hard drive, and - get this - CA Internet Security Suite 2007.
Yes, boys and girls, the very same CA Internet Security Suite 2007 that RoadRunner hands out.
The very same CA Internet Security Suite 2007 that has such an agressive firewall out of the box that it will stop MSNBC from loading properly.
Now ... think about this for a minute ... presumably you would buy a $200 refurb box trying to run Vista on 512MB of RAM for some really basic user - someone maybe in the range of age 4 who presumably has never been on a computer to notice how HORRENDOUSLY slow Vista must run on 512MB of RAM - and THEN you're going to throw them a firewall that will be screaming at them every time they go pretty much ANYWHERE???
Have they REALLY lost they DAMN minds??
Speaking of which ...
Have any of you ever actually BOUGHT an eMachines box??
Subprime Relief - Too Little Too Late?
Yeppers ... the very same President Bush who brought you Afganistan and Iraq is now pledging to try to save your house.
[[Laughing uncontrolably to the point of coughing up blood ... ]]
"Reforming the tax code"?
"Rigorously enforcing predatory lending laws and strengthening lending practices"?
How about putting the bit on Bernanke for a half-point Fed Funds cut NOW?
And how about setting up some sort of maybe federal agency that can simply buy up these messed up mortgages and rent back to the original borrowers so that PEOPLE AREN'T GETTING THROWN OUT IN THE STREET??
And how about BANNING these sub-prime mortgages in the first place? There's a REASON you shouldn't lend money to people with bad credit you know ...
Labels: Sub-Prime Mortgage Crisis
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Where does he FIND these women??? :)
Katrina - Plus Two Years
I wonder if we've actually learned anything ...
Labels: Hurricane Katrina
Monday, August 27, 2007
Is It Just Me Or Does Chickie-Doo Look STONED??
Labels: Jessica Alba
Saturday, August 25, 2007
"Katrina" Doctor Cleared of Homicide Charges
Dr. Anna Pou has been cleared by the grand jury of all charges related to pushing versed and morphine on nine hopelessly suffering patients in the desperate, desperate days following Hurrican Katrina.
Thank goodness SOMEONE has developed some sense.
It looks like she is still facing civil suits, however.
Let's hope those juries have similar sensibilties and let this poor lady go ...
Thursday, August 23, 2007
Credit mess layoffs massive - The Cincinnati Enquirer
"40,000 workers have lost their jobs at mortgage lending institutions ..."
"Construction companies have announced nearly 20,000 job cuts this year ..."
"'It's far from over ... The subprime lending collapse will continue to ripple through the financial sector.'"
Labels: Subprime Lending Collapse
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
Economy Collapses As Bernanke Twiddles Thumbs
Credit crunch lowers prices of base metals - from Purchasing.com:
"Prices of many nonferrous and precious metals have gone into a freefall ..."
"Buyers also report to Purchasdingdata.com that orders to their companies from the housing, appliance, durable-goods and information technology sectors are coming down, so they, in turn, are planning to buy less production metals."
"... financial services customers are holding back on orders for new communications and computer service ..."
Can you give us a half-point cut there, buddy, before we all end up eating DOG FOOD??
And we're talking about a cut in the Fed Funds rate - not that goofy Discount Window Rate crap that nobody uses anyway...
Big Butter Jesus by Heywood Banks
And - just to think - people come all the way from MALAYSIA to see this thing ...
Labels: Butter Jesus
So Long, Mortgage Industry ...
Tuesday, August 21, 2007
Yep ... These Guys DEFINITELY Don't Watch Star Trek
Monday, August 20, 2007
Here We Go Again
"You can't outrun them.
You can't destroy them.
If you damage them, the essence of what they are remains ... they regenerate and keep coming.
Eventually, you will weaken.
Your reserves will be gone.
They are relentless."
Labels: Hurricane Dean
Saturday, August 18, 2007
The Neurotypical Dress Code
Julia stopped by with some comments about some possible underpinning of the neurotypical dress codes - "If you're a guy, no one wants to see your underwear ..." and "An attractive woman wearing something with spaghetti straps can be rather visually distracting, and this may be the reason behind a lot of dress codes, keeping people less visually distracting so that other people have an easier time doing their jobs."
But, in my experience, in certain cases there seems to be something beyond "distracting" about people wearing certain types of clothing in a professional setting. It seems to go to the level of OFFENSE.
Of course, we might want to explore each of the possible "items of offensive clothing" in a "professional" setting and, in so doing, possibly gain some insight into the neurotypical mind.
Fortunately we have an actual list of banned clothing items from arguably one of the most relaxed indoor / cubicle-type environments ever documented by the human species. In other words, if something made it on the list in this particular joint, it must REALLY make the neurotypicals upset.
No Short shorts (Shorts must be mid thigh or longer)
I don't know about you, but it's always been KNEES that have caused me to have impure thoughts about certain young ladies. I SUPPOSE getting a glimpse of a young lady's upper thigh in particular might be enough to bring all production to a halt, but ...
No tank tops, tube tops, or spaghetti straps
Hmmm ... this seems to be alluding to something that came up when they were putting together the costume guidelines for Star Trek that you can't show a woman's belly button. Yes, my friends, a simple glance at a woman's navel makes neurotypicals incapable of operating a telephone or computer. Yikes!
No short shirts (no stomachs or midriffs should be exposed)
There it is again - belly button - BAD!
No mini skirts
There's the upper thigh thing again. What IS it about this particular region of anatomy that makes it impossible for people to do actual work?
No pajama bottoms or bedroom slippers
Somewhat confusing of course as there is a blog advertising company called "Pajamas Media". Yes, in the comfort of your own basement, you can create a web site visited by thousands and thousands of people while dressed in your pajamas (or less), but bring other people into the picture and the whole works seizes up.
No suggestive or tight articles of clothing
Oh, now a CASTING of a belly button, breasts, or, presumably, a camel toe is UTTERLY outside of consideration. Again, this seems to fit into the category of particularly the young ladies announcing to the world, "I'm getting some!" and the more mature ladies simply can't handle this.
No holes or tears in clothing
Whoops ... someone may get a glimpse of navel or upper thigh through one of those holes ... can't have that!
No obscenities, offensive, or suggestive slogans or artwork
Oh now this is a can of worms. Now I personally may find a "F*CK BUSH" T-shirt to be completely appropriate, but may fly off the handle immediately if someone comes in wearing a "Jesus Saves" shirt. However, this interesting part of this guideline is "suggestive slogans or artwork". "Suggestive". Nope, my friends, you cannot announce, you cannot allude to, you cannot even THINK about the fact that you are a sexual being in the workplace (or a long-term care facility for that matter) without risking neurotypicals spontaneously bursting into flames all around you.
No undergarments should be visible (ex. bra straps)
Now, I was wondering what was going on with this one until I found out that apparently tehre is someo sort of fashion craze going on where the young ladies are wearing various items of underwear ON TOP of their shirts. I'm not sure how such a fashion arrangement came to be, but, yes, again, it apparently announces to the older neurotypicals, "I'm getting laid on a regular basis!" and this sends the neurotypicals into spasms.
No skull caps
Are kippot included in this?
Ah ... one that, apparently, has nothing to do with sex.
However, it MIGHT have something to do with substance abuse. Generally speaking, when the subject of innappropriate workplace clothing comes up, the sample sited is usually not a "F*ck You AND The Horse You Rode In On" T-shirt, but rather the ubiquitous POT LEAF T-shirt.
Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the area right after sex that neurotypicals can't deal with is DRUGS. Now the little sh*ts will DRINK you under the table. They see NO problem at all with getting ripped senseless EVERY damn weekend so long as you can pass a 10-panel by the time you are trying to start a new job, but GOD forbid you should enjoy the slightest bit of weed from time to time.
Oh they go bonkers.
Is the neurotypical brain resistant to marijuana? Does it simply make them sick or something? Are the JEALOUS of the fact that some people can create great works of art, music, and computer software while they are going through a garbage bag or two of prime bud?
But, yes, boys and girls, if you too can project the image to the neurotypicals that you NEVER, EVER even THINK about sex or drugs, you will have a long and prosperous career among the neurotypicals ...
Friday, August 17, 2007
Would You Have Believed This Is Alyssa Milano If I Hadn't Told You?
Thursday, August 16, 2007
PROOF That This Fool Is Under The Control Of Powerful Forces
One thing you have to admit ...
THIS man is NOT stupid.
So what sinister mind-warping technique could possibly take someone who had the sense to know EXACTLY what was going to happen in Iraq and turn him into the MASTERMIND for causing all the crap HE predicted?
Probably not one you could learn from a Jedi ...
"Luke looks normal and has a wicked command of the English language ... BUT ... his brain does not work in the same way as yours and mine ..."
There is an EXCELLENT article running on the UK Daily Mail about a young man named Luke who apparently developed Asperger's as the result of a nasty case of encephalitis as a baby.
It's pretty amazing how many of of this young man's traits are like my Old Man's.
"A scratch or graze will have him screaming in panic, yet something like a broken arm has the opposite effect and he will appear not to feel it."
The Old Man of course will have a fit if he gets a bug bite, but when he had an actual heart attack he handled that quite well.
Luke's mother, Jan Greenman, puts a name to a phenomenon I have noticed with The Old Man - she calls it "blueprinting" - for instance if he tastes something for the first time that create's a "blueprint" in Luke's mind and he demands that anything like that taste in the future has to be exactly the same brand, the same cooking method, etc.
Similarly, once you start doing the WORSH and the PROVISIONING for The Old Man because he just had g*dd*mn quadruple bypass surgery, it doesn't matter that he long ago recovered from the heart attack, you have to keep doing those chores for him for the rest of his days.
Fortunately The Old Man seems to have been spared most of the aggressive tendencies Jan Greenman describes about her son Luke. Although, I do have to tell you, particularly when he was younger, The Old Man had one hell of a temper.
Ah, yes, the many, many joys of daily life in and around The Spectrum ...
Wednesday, August 15, 2007
Obi Ken's New Obsession Gets First iPhone Bill - In A BOX!
Defining "Normal" and "Neurotypical"
So I stumble across this blog of a young lady who claims to be "ordinary" and merely dating someone with Asperger's Syndrome.
She thinks and analyses things.
She has a blog.
She chooses to spend her time presumably with someone with characteristics somewhat similar to Mr. Spock.
That's not ordinary.
Not by a long shot.
Of course one of the major problems is with defining such terms as "ordinary", "normal", and "neurotypical".
Of course "normal" started to be a "loaded" word quite a number of years ago because it carries with it the baggage of "correct" and, yes, "kosher". "Normal" tends to mean that not only is the phenomenon in question something common, but something that people should want and strive to be.
One major problem of course is that quite often what is spoken of as "normal" or "typical" is neither, but rather the IMAGE neurotypicals would like to project.
For instance, back when my mother was in California she was doing a great deal of studying with the Adult Children Of Alcoholics support groups and ran into what is presumably a mantra in households where there are practicing alcoholics - "Don't talk, don't think, don't feel, and definitely don't rock the boat."
Apparently the thought is something like this - "Dad's drinking. We would suffer intractable embarassment if the nieghbors and distant relatives knew that Dad is drinking, so we are going to put on an absolutely outrageous act that Dad is absolutely wonderful so that the neighbors and distant relatives will think well of us."
The thing that strikes me, however, the more time that I do spend with these neurotypicals, is that such role playing and rusing goes WAY beyond trying to cover anything as actually serious as practicing alcoholism.
There would appear to be a STAGGERING array of things that actually are statistically very normal in neurotypicals, but that they would rather die than suffer the embarassment of admitting.
After quite a number of decades of intense observation, I would like to announce that quite average, normal, run-of-the-mill neurotypicals do the following from time to time:
1. Neurotypicals make love. I figured this out when they started bringing me their children that all look just like them. They'll never admit to it or talk about it though. In fact, when these children start to ask them how they got here, the neurotypical parents will start cooking up stories about storks or some vagueary like "God made you" or something of the sort. Of course, on the other hand, neuroatypical parents will often sit their 5-year-old children down and give them a college freshman level biology lecture when prompted with the same question, but that's another topic ...
2. Neurotypicals get upset. Most often about topics having to do with Point #1. Now Reform Normal seems to have it in mind that my classic story about the receptionist coming to work in spaghetti straps causes a disruption in the routine of the neurotypicals, thus causing a "miniature meltdown" of sorts in the neurotypicals.
But I'm guessing it's more along the lines that the older neurotypical female, the "accounting person" in my story, is affronted an insulted that the younger receptionist, via her clothing, is admitting to Point #1. In fact, the younger receptionist is almost bragging, "*I* am having sex on a regular basis!"
Now, of course, anyone capable of any sort of level of abstract thought should be able to turn around and say, "So what? So are all the stray cats in the neighborhood." But not the neurotypicals of course. They have to share their shock, dismay and horror to the entire company.
3. Neurotypicals drink. ALOT. But for the life of me I cannot figure out what the hell neurotypicals are DOING with their drinking. I'm not so sure about the Autism Spectrum specifically, but certainly the "creative crowd" - artists, musicians, etc., have a millenia-long relationship with substance abuse. Quite a number of them I have known over the years have been utterly unable to function creatively when deprived of the substance of their choice, be it alcohol, marijuana, amphetamines, heroine, inhalants, caffeine, or doughnuts.
Neurotypicals, on the other hand, seem to be doing something DIFFERENT with alcohol. For one, they seem to challenge each other to see who can drink the most. Also, instead of many of the "creative crowd" getting drunk or high and running off to create art or compose or perform music, the neurotypicals get F*CKING BELIGERENT, hateful, spiteful, and start beating the living crap out of anything they can get their hands on - usually starting with those they love most like spouses and children.
4. Neurotypicals can't admit to Point #3 either, so they claim to turn regligious and to have been "saved" from their drinking, and somehow this makes them look good enough to each other that they'll vote each other into the White House on this point alone.
Of course neurotypicals will admit to none of this. In their own minds they are visions of radiant perfection. They walk on water and their sh*t doesn't stink. And anyone who does not aspire to such magnificence is considered tainted and somehow nasty.
You know what ... coming to think of it ... maybe being "abnormal" and "neuroatypical" isn't so bad after all ... :)
CIA AND The Vatican Editing Wikipedia Entries
Now, if this isn't enough to make you lose sleep ...
The BBC is reporting that researchers have discovered that agents on CIA-controlled computers have modified the Wikipedia entry on Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and that representatives of the Pope have manipulated the Wikipedia profile of Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams.
Oh, isn't THAT nice??
Apparently also representatives of the Democratic Party added commentary to the Wikipedia entry on Rush Limbaugh calling him "idiotic", a "racist" and a "bigot".
Oh, yes ... how we LOVE the information contributed to humanity's collective knowledge by such fine, upstanding, trustworthy and, most importantly - unbiased - organizations ...
700 WLW Vs. The Hispanic Community
Countrywide May Face Bankruptcy
Up until now, many of the names being tossed around as filing bankruptcy over the sub-prime mortgage crisis were not very well known.
That has changed rather abruptly as an analyst from Merrill Lynch suspects the biggest U.S. mortgage lender, Countrywide Financial Corp., may be facing "effective insolvency".
Countrywide is HUGE!
Yes, at this point this whole thing is putting me in mind of the Dot-Com bubble detonation of the late 1990's.
Of course the Dot-Com bubble itself was similar to the Dutch Tulip Bulb crisis of several centuries ago.
Basically what happens in an open market is that occasionally certain items get "hot", prices get way overinflated and then, quite suddenly, prices of those items plunge precipitously.
Only problem is with these mortgages there were a great many other things that were backed up by those mortgages - primarily business investments.
All this leads to what's called a "liquidity crisis" - basically people start getting hesitant to lend money and the next thing you know you have a deadly sprial on your hands that can cripple an entire economy.
The Federal Reserve is generally late to the game in trying to get such a situation under control. Only an even the magnitude of 9/11 seems to cause them to get their act into gear and do one of the few things that might help at all - lower interest rates.
Yep ... we may all be in deep, deep trouble ...
The Indignity Of Being Sick In America
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
KenDiesel Vs. The 9/11 Conspiracy Nuts
My estimable padawan, Obi Ken (KenDiesel), has been on a pretty interesting rant against a 9/11 conspiracy nut site, not so much because their science is whacked, but, rather, at least according to Obi Ken, because they're liberals.
Now, mind you, this is the same person who went off on a diatribe about evolution the other day, where, if he's going where I think he's going, seems to be saying, "I'm a white boy (relatively thin, UV penetrable skin), therefore there God must exist."
However, on this 9/11 thing he actually seems to be going for some pretty solid logic.
You see, there are quite a few lunatics out there who seem to think that the fire caused by the planes crashing into the World Trade Center was insufficient to have caused the buildings to collapse, but ObiKen happened to remember the roadway collapsed caused by a burning gasoline truck in Oakland back on April 29th.
Now, too bad he can't seem to put two and two together based on massive studies of not only the Y-chromosome and mitochondrial DNA of people but also of BODY LICE (that can only survive in close contact with people) that both species are at least several million years old.
I guess evolutionary biologists tend to be liberals.
Obi Ken has a problem with liberals ... :)
Sunday, August 12, 2007
Ballastexistenz On UK Channel 4
Ballastexistenz, arguably the Internet's most famous Autism Rights Activist, was recently featured on a segment on the UK's Channel 4 that Ballastexistenz herself thinks is "incredibly simplistic".
Having been pounced upon by a reporter myself once at a Cincinnati City Council, I can assure you that she is not the only person who has ever been misquoted or mischaracterized by the mainstream media.
Yes, the content of this piece is so short to be of almost no substantive value, however, what IS striking about this piece is the Second Life avatar of Ballasexistenz.
Now, it seems, in general, people build avatars on Second Life that don't necessarily reflect their "real life" appearance. Many, in fact, use avatars that look like animals, or, for some of us, some sort of bizarre reflection of certain aspects of our own personalities.
Building Second Life avatars is not easy. Even getting a simple kippah to sit properly on one's head in Second Life and take the better part of a week of work.
For Ballastexistenz to have so closely constructed so many of her own "quirks" is utterly remarkable.
Just think about the incredible amount of talent that must go unrecognized every day by the neurotypicals in people even far less profoundly disabled than Ballastexistenz simply because they don't know how to "schmooze".
Oh, and it looks like the Voice Chat function is working in Second Life now, so I'll be in or near the shul for a little while if any of you would like to come by and say hi ... :)
Friday, August 10, 2007
Thursday, August 9, 2007
IGNORANT G.D. Brotha' ...
He's at it again.
First Denmark Vesey comes up with some of the most putrid anti-semitism I'm seen in ages, and now he's proving he's ignorant too.
First, let me explain the word "ignorant" in this context.
I once got banned from commenting on La Shawn Barber's blog for calling her ignorant.
You see ... I once had a very dear friend of the African-American gland who I once asked, "Now, a white person who is hopelessly racist against Blacks or other races we call 'bigot' or 'racist' - is there a common word used in the Black community to describe a Black person who is hopelessly prejudiced against Whites?"
She answered the question immediately: "Ignorant".
I've presumed at some point this word might be applicable to any African-American with hopelessly prejudiced or off-base views towards any race or group, and I'm pretty sure in La Shawn Barber's case it was a particularly homophobic post on her blog that would probably take me two hours to dig up.
Now Denmark Vesey posts this beaut today about poor devil named Ian Johnson, the Boise State running back who scored the winning points in the Fiesta Bowl, who happens to be African-American and who happens to be engaged to Chrissy Popadics, a White woman, and possibly even a DOUBLE DOMINANT White woman at that, who is scared for his life that someone is going to make an attempt on his life for marrying a White woman.
Denmark Vesey titled his post "That's Cool... But Not My Son."
Where in the WORLD does such colossal ignorance come from?
I'm put in mind of a sermon I once heard in person from Dr. Frederick KC Price when he visited Fairfield a number of years ago. He played a tape containing part of a sermon of a former mentor of his (widely believed to be Kenneth Hagin, Sr.). This former mentor, an obviously White racist idiot, went on for quite a piece about how he didn't approve of interracial dating.
Fred Price basically said, "Now look - I've been married to Mrs. Price for better than 50 years now. I'm not looking for a date. But, if you're saying that you wouldn't want to see your daughter dating my son, then you're saying that I'm lesser of a person than you and that I DO have a problem with ..."
Denmark, are you saying you wouldn't want to see YOUR daughter dating MY son??? ... :)
Autistic Non-Verbal Communication
Ballastexistenz brought up an interesting subject today - namely the abilities (and/or lack thereof) of people with autism spectrum disorders to receive and process non-verbal information.
If I understand her correctly, she seems to be saying that some parents of autistic children mention that the children can pick up tension in the household even though people with autism spectrum disorders are notorious for not picking up non-verbal clues.
Now, this is a topic that deserves some scrutiny.
In my dealings with the various people in my family who have been affected by Asperger's and similar "afflictions", I'd have to say they are quite aware of many non-verbal channels of communication - particularly when it comes to picking up on people or animals being in pain, and very particularly when that pain is being caused by an ignorant or evil neurotypical.
The very root of the word "autism" aludes to unusual self-involvment, but, if you pay attention to the theme of many of the writings and videos of Ballasexistenz there is certainly a very strong theme of healthy righteous indignation not just that SHE has been mistreated but that many others with various disabilities have been mistreated.
More specifically, the theme of her pieces is often not just that she and other disabled people have been physically mistreated, improperly confined and insulted in various ways but have often been THOUGHT OF AS SOMEHOW LESS THAN HUMAN.
Yes, I'd have to say this is a reasonably complex non-verbal communication that one can be instinctively aware of the distress that can be invoked in another person who is being subjected to dehumanizing treatment.
However, this of course isn't the type of non-verbal communication that the neurotypicals have in mind. Of course, the neurotypicals themselves have problems with this particular type of communication. Despite supposedly having perfectly normal "mirror neurons" they seem, for instance, to be able to quite blissfully lead their lives while watching tens of millions of people be dehumanized without health insurance because they can't bear to see their own taxes raised a little.
No, when the neurotypicals get frustrated with Autism spectrum people "not picking up non-verbal cues", they're talking about the little stuff. And generally we're not talking about this level of variaton from "standard" non-verbal communication. As a matter of fact, I have played that video to neurotypicals and had them very nearly go into shock. In fact, what I found fascinating is that the neurotypical reaction to In My Language is often not terribly dissimilar to the reaction of a person with autism to other forms of sensory overload.
What seems to be the difference between the austisic and the neurotypical is not a lack of awareness of non-verbal communication, but rather a deficiency, or perhaps simply a serious DIFFERNCE in the apparently innate responses to such non-verbal communication.
For instance, one area that I have been UTTERLY fascinated by is neurotypical workplace behavior. For instance, if someone comes to a particular job dressed "inappropriately", it can cause a level of chaos that can bring a 300-person office to a complete and utter halt within minutes. Very often I have asked neurotypicals why such reactions take place, and the closest thing to a coherent answer I ever got was from Mrs. Axinar who said something to the effect, "There are some things you just shouldn't have to explain."
Sounds to me as though this "inappropriate clothing" reaction is something that originates in such a primitive part of the brain in neurotypicals that they can't even articulate what they're experiencing. Sometimes I've seen people try - "Oh, that's unprofessional," or, "Oh, that's disrespectful," but I really wonder what the actual EMOTION is like.
For instance, say you have someone who has been working in the accounting department for the last 15 years, and, on a particularly hot day, for instance, the new receptionist comes in wearing spaghetti straps - what DOES go through the mind of the person in the accounting department in the moments before she starts maligning the new receptionist to the entire company? Does the accounting person experience a sensation of sensory overload an autistic person might feel upon accidentally wandering into a rock concert? Is the emotion, whatever it is, so utterly alien to anyone with even the tiniest dusting of autism that there really is no way to explain it?
And let's not EVEN get into why the neurotypicals seem to LIKE insincere smiles ...
Wednesday, August 8, 2007
Go, Barbara, Go!
Tuesday, August 7, 2007
Denmark Vesey Vs. The State Of Israel
Northside. July 4th. 1946?
There were quite a few of family members I knew - aunts and uncles as infants, great-aunts and uncles as young adults, but, of course, one or two that I couldn't quite identify at all.
This was one of them.
Judging from the angle I'm thinking this was taken from the west side of Hamilton Avenue near the intersection of Chase Ave., and, if I had to hazard a guess, I'd have to say this was taken at the legendary Northside Fourth of July parade.
The question of course - what year?
Well, there's a license plate on a car in the foreground and if you REALLY blow up the original to outrageous sizes, it just MIGHT say "1946".
Certainly a great deal has changed over the years since this photograph was snapped. It looks as if there was a small Kroger at the corner of Chase and Hamilton. Of course the supermarket had not been invented in 1946 and the Kroger stores most likely were pretty small back then - and there were apartments ABOVE the Kroger.
I wonder who the man and woman in uniform were.
I wonder who the kids in the funny hats were.
And ... do the math ... these kids look to be around 14 in this picture. That would make them something on the order of 75 now.
I wonder how many of them are still with us.
I wonder if any of them still come out to watch that parade ...
Monday, August 6, 2007
Do You Speak "Autistic"?
Ballastexistenz wrote an interesting piece today attempting once again to explain her somewhat legendary video In My Language. She said she produced the video for Ashley, the little girl who's parents were hacking on her so she would never grow up, but also for "anyone whose language is considered lesser than the dominant language."
Interesting concept. I have often found myself thinking that I may, in fact, be somewhere on the autism spectrum because my use of language can often be quite different than that of the neurotypicals.
Although, somewhat ironically, of course one of the things most striking about In My Language are the many channels of non-verbal communication that Ballastexistenz utilizes - auditory, tactile, etc., and it would seem also that some of my personally more baffling points of neurotypical communication are non-verbal - dressing a certain way, lying through your teeth about certain issues in exactly the right way, etc.
Ballastexistenz goes on to say, if I understand her correctly, that frequently her work is interpretted not as an honest attempt at correcting the injustices of the world, but rather an exercize in individual self-aggrandizement.
Well, of course there generally would be a little of each involved in such an endeavor. Apparently your average neurotypical doesn't seek public recognition. They pretty much like to hide in the sidelines and go to their kid's ballgames. No, apparently it takes a certain artistic obsession and a really intense case of The Big Head to get involved with such endeavors.
This is not necessarily a bad thing. As was once explained to me by a rabbi from Canada, were it not for impassioned righteous indignation we would have never had Ralph Nader go after the car companies to make a safer product or John Walsh go after people who hurt and kill children.
But, pretty much, all I would advise is that Ballastexistenz tell her detractors to go get stuffed. I hope she does have some luck in getting the humanity of the differently-abled recognized by the Neurotypicals - and not just the "flamingly" disabled, but also the "slightly touched" - like my mother, myself, and probably The Dean ... :)
NASA Finally Sending Teacher To Space
21 years after the loss of the space vehicle Challenger, NASA is set to send 55-year-old Barbara Morgan, back-up to Teacher-In-Space pioneer Christa McAuliffe, into space aboard Endeavor on Wednesday.
Used to be NASA had a way of getting back up after disasters.
Gus Grissom, Ed White, and Roger Chaffee were killed in a launch-pad fire in January of 1967 on Apollo 1. Almost two years later the Apollo 1 backup crew commanded by Wally Shirra got our trek towards the moon back underway.
Challenger fell from the sky in January 1986, taking with her the first Teacher-In-Space, Christa McCauliffe, and pretty emotinoally scaring every school-aged child of that epoch for life.
Two years later Discovery returned to orbit.
In 2003, Columbia fell from the sky, and even Enterprise had to sacrifice part of her wings to find out why. Again, two years later Discovery got Americans back in space again.
But one part of that Challenger mission was left undone - the Teacher-In-Space mission.
Challenger reminded us that space travel is still dangerous. Columbia reminded us again. And, perhaps for too long, the stream of legislators and various other civilians that had been taking trips on the shuttle stopped.
Now, with a little luck, Christa McAuliffe's mission will be completed.
"Challenger ... go at throttle up ..."
Sunday, August 5, 2007
Malaysian Discovers Illuminati / Trilateral Commission / New World Order
So I stumble across this blog called Malay Women in Malaysia, not because of the Malaysia connection, but rather because the author appears to have discovered the work of the secretive world-wide governing force in Malaysia. This force is sometimes called the Illuminati, the New World Order, or various other names.
Actually in Malaysia I suppose they have even more reason than in the US to be paranoid of secretive para-governmental organizations. Over there apparently they have this group called "The Special Branch" that has been known to make people "dissapear" who are critical of the Malaysian government or the majority Muslim population.
The author of this blog goes on to say, "Malaysians must learn to travel and see the world outside of Malaysia. Only then you would know what is really going on in the world today. You will learn nothing from our silly mainstream news."
Well, you'll figure out pretty much the same thing if you come to the US. In fact, what you'll find that's bizarre over here - out Ruling Elite is SO sure of their power over the mainstream media outlets that they don't even TRY to completely muzzle alternative voices - at least not directly.
You can start up a blog or a web page or even a print newspaper here and largely no one will care - not so much out of any sort of respect for the First Amendment but rather because The Powers That Be know that nobody will give a damn. If you don't have control over millions upon millions of dollars to buy thirty second spots on the major networks by the boatload, quite frankly no one of any IMPORT will hear a bit of what you have to say.
Now he goes on to talk about the Trilateral Commission, the Illuminati and the New World Order, explaining that those who are ostensibly in power, the prominent politicians, are really puppets for some larger, more sinister power.
I have had similar thoughts. Of course, generally speaking, our own President, Congressmen and Senators are not truly in power. They are, each and every one of them, beholden to staggeringly wealthy interests that pay them OBSCENE amounts of money to buy 30 second television commercials so they can get re-elected.
Now, of course we think we might be able to trace the people with the money to the "CEO's" of the major corporations, but of course they, in turn, are beholden to the "Board of Directors", who are turn beholden to the "shareholders".
Now who are the shareholders? Sometimes we think the "shareholders" are retirees and private investors, but, no, more and more often you see the major shareholders of many enormous companies as just a tiny handful of increasingly foreign-owned banks plus the stray state teachers' retirement fund.
Sometimes I think if you could actually track down the path of all the major decisions, you would ultimately turn up ONE person who is calling the majority of the shots.
There is precent for tracing pervasive ideology back to a single source. For instance, apparently the thinking that lead up to the 9/11 attacks traces back to a single incident where a certain Sayyid Qutb was accosted by a drunken bar fly on a cruise ship. This incident so insulted him that he believed the entire culture that allowed for such behavior needed to be eradicated and set into play a chain of events that has lead directly to the horrid state of affairs we are in now.
Saidul A. Shaari, author of the "Malay Women in Malaysia" blog, refers to a couple of presumably powerful politicians there as "... just puppets; puppets who have to answer to a lot of powerful people outside of Malaysia."
I think the same is true of the United States. As dangerous as Bush and Cheney are - what with having immediately access to nuclear weapons and all - I believe they, in turn, are working off debts to some powerful, powerful people. Who those people are I have NO idea, but I'm pretty sure they are as little American as they are Malaysian.
In fact, considering how utterly ruthless these "Secret World Powers" are, I'm beginning to suspect they may not even be terrestrial. I'm thinking sometime since the Reagan administration and maybe as far back as Nixon we were invaded by SOME sort of extraterrestrials who are manipulating some of the most powerful people on Earth.
On the other hand, there have been some really mean S.O.B.'s all throughout history.
Just seems like in the past they were out in the open ...
SiCKO “Hitman” Shares Insurance Industry Secrets With Honest Medicine
There is an EXCELLENT podcast running from former health insurance hitman Lee Einer on Honest Medicine.
Among dozens and dozens of sad stories Mr. Einer tells is one about a family that even tried to pay out of pocket for a sinus operation for their son that was denied by insurance who ultimately ended up with their son in a vegetative state and bankrupt as the insurance company also refused to cover the complications that arose from the originally denied surgery.
I don't know how we live with ourselves the way we handle health care.
You really, really need to listen to this podcast ...
Saturday, August 4, 2007
These Two Still Worry Me I Swear To God
Does this picture put you in mind maybe of a REALLY bad science fiction movie?
Unfortunately it's very real.
Oh, and by the way, your Senators approved of these fools spying on you without a warrant ...
Thursday, August 2, 2007
Comcast Vs. Cincinnati Bell And The Coming Email Tax
The conversation about Cincinnati Bell's email issues continues to rage over on The Cincinnati Beacon.
Komarek posted a comment mentioning that he had spoken with a "Fuse tech" who in turn fingered Comcast, a name that has been mentioned before in that thread.
Apparently what is going on is that Comcast will only allow a certain number of emails a day from Fuse.
So I'm thinking, "Oooooh ... it's the 'GoodMail' Internet email blackmail tax thing again."
Of course the very first thing I'm thinking is, "Who in the HELL is Comcast and why are so many Fuse people trying to email Comcast people?"
Is Comcast big in Northern Kentucky or something?
Well, first of all, of late it looks like Comcast has been serving their customers with notices that the customers can no longer sue Comcast, but Comcast can still sue the customers.
But, looking a little further back, we discover that Comcast has been cutting off service to customers it deems "abusive" of bandwidth usage.
Oh, that's nice.
So, probably, if I understand this correctly, Comcast has it in its head somehow that Cincinnati Bell is "abusing Comcast's pipes" by [[gasp]] sending emails.
Well, ordinarily this should not be a big issue. As I've mentioned, it seems that the "business model" for getting your email from your ISP no longer works. $45/mo. is just not enough to keep a decent email system going so you should be able to switch to an advertiser-supported email service like AOL, right?
Well, if you want to use the crappy web interface you're fine.
Actually, if you're ready to sober up to the modern realities of the email scene and start using a web interface you ought to start using GMail. As a matter of fact, send me a note at email@example.com and I'll send you and invite.
But, let's suppose that you simply can't wean yourself off Outlook, Eudora, Pegasus, or some other antiquated email client. You can just connect Outlook to AOL's IMAP servers, right?
Apparently a few years ago many Fuse customers were hit REALLY hard by mass emailing worms and the only way they could figure out to put the kibosh on all this traffic was to block their users from hooking up directly to any SMTP servers besides Fuse's.
Now, for some reason, for instance RoadRunner never had to do such a thing.
God forbid that Cincinnati Bell should put in a little creativity or spend a little money to find a system that can distinguish between, for instance, The Dean coming home from a long day of trying to defend the good people of the Greater Cincinnati area from incompetent technical support and checking his email from AOL's IMAP servers, and some virus-laden PC sending billions of emails to email servers all across the fruited plain.
But, yes, I can tell it's coming. No matter how much we fight it, no matter what we do, eventually the mentality of "you're using OUR pipes, you have to PAY" will, at very least, result in something like an "email tax".
Much like the personal income tax, it will probably start out small - maybe $.001, but will slowly but surely rise to the $0.20 cent range like with text messages.
Because people will be fool enough to pay it!
But, until then, I wish all y'all would just come over to RoadRunner. I mean - good God, people - I've heard there are people who WORK for Cincinnati Bell who are eligible for FREE Zoomtown/Fuse service who DON'T take it and pay CASH through the NOSE for RoadRunner because, well folks, RoadRunner WORKS (although don't get me started on THEIR email system) ...
Wednesday, August 1, 2007
Minneapolis Bridge Collapse
Just think about THIS the next time you drive over to the Cork & Bottle ...
At least 6 are reported dead.
(This bridge was YOUNGER than the Brent Spence, BTW ...)
Brent Spence sound, but obsolete - The Cincinnati Enquirer
Bridge Collapse Sends 50 Cars Into River - The New York Times
Dozens injured, at least one killed in bridge collapse - KARE11
Freeway Bridge Collapses Into River in Minneapolis - The New York Times
Bridge falls into Mississippi River - AP via Yahoo! News
Horrific bridge collapse in Minneapolis - HotAir
Tragic Minneapolis Bridge Collapse - Views from Minnesota
Minneapolis Bridge Collapses - Attack of LoveJezabel
Minneapolis bridge collapses - Jockey Full of Bourbon
Minneapolis Bridge Collapses Into Mississippi River During Rush Hour - Texas Rainmaker
Minneapolis Bridge Collapse - bu.bulicio.us
Interstate 35W bridge collapses in downtown Minneapolis, several dead - Elliot's blog
God damn - Eh... not so much
Breaking: Bridge Collapse in Minneapolis - A Blog For All
Multiple Fatalities Reported in Minneapolis Bridge Collapse - The Righter Report
BUSH ECSTATIC: MINNEAPOLIS BRIDGE COLLAPSE WAS NOT THE WORK OF ISLAMIC FANATICS - Carbolic Smoke Ball
Axinar's Dissed Again
As reported in The Cincinnati Nation, Axinar's, along with a number of other prominent locally-based blogs, did not make the CinTechUSA/Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber Top 10 Best Blogs List.
Who DID make the list? Well, pretty much the only really familiar name is everyone's favorite local cybersquatter, Brian Griffin's Cincinnati Blog.
Now, mind you, obviously Brian has been at it alot longer than most of the rest of us. Brian has a "serious" blog - in fact - a few years back when City Hall put the kibosh on all blog reading on city time, then-mayor Charlie Luken made an exception for Cincinnati Blog.
What's missing from Cincinnati Blog? Yes, blatent histrionics and outrageous assertions.
Now, where can you turn for that?
Well, first of all you have my good buddy Nate Livingston and his Cincinnati Black Blog. For those of you who have forgotten, this is the young man who did time in the pokey for shouting down the mayor with bullhorn in the middle of Fountain Square. I knew Nate when he was in high school. He was kneehigh to a grasshopper and such a quiet, introverted bookworm that I nearly fell over when I realized he was the guy with the bullhorn - oh - and the blog.
The Cincinnati Beacon - this is a collaborative effort by Justin Jeffre, Michael Earl Patton, and a certified lunatic who calls himself "The Dean of Cincinnati". Of course The Dean is very entertaining, usually writes on serious topics, and is nice enough to leave me voice mails accusing me of being a racist for griping about WCPO's habit from late last year of habitually JIP'ing "Star Trek: Remastered":
And, of course Axinar's.
Now, I admit there may be reasons for CinTechUSA and the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber overlooking the brilliance of Axinar's.
As I've gone over with The Dean on numerous occasions, Axinar's is not JUST about Cincinnati-area issues.
What IS it about?
Well, believe it or not, it started out because it was the only way I could get any attention whatsoever from a certain statuesque, hyperglycemic, histrionic former Indian-Malaysian newspaper reporter who had her own blog variously on at least Xanga and Blogspot who used to prattle on for dozens of paragraphs about a chocolate drink called Milo and how she would most assuredly wither and perish because this goofnozzle who fashioned himself a Sith Lord wasn't worshipping the ground she walked on any more.
Then of course along came the story of the young Tamil-American pediatrician named Malar Balasubramanian who brought some REAL South Asian drama to the Tri-State area. In an email she wrote after juicing her mother up with 35 Xannie bars and then strangling her, Malar wrote of feeling depressed and that she felt she was, "a second rate friend, second rate sibling ... second rate daugther, second rate doctor." She did say though at one time she wanted "a life full of good and true friends, good and true love, good and true intentions and purpose."
After writing all this she dragged her mother's body into a black 1998 Oldsmobile Intrigue, drove to a parking lot in Blue Ash, exited the vehicle and was later picked up half naked and soaking wet.
After some legal wranglings, she eventually changed her plea to guilty to the charge of involuntary manslaughter and is now a year and a half into serving 10 years in the slammer.
THEN there was the Kabaka Oba / Howard Beatty cable public access feud that resulted in Kabaka getting blown away by Howard right across the street from City Hall while Cincinnati City Council was in session, causing Cincinnati Mayor Mark Mallory to soil himself and hire Scottie Johnson as a body guard.
The assasination of Kabaka Oba set loose his paramour, Joy Rolland, to make several ADDITIONAL Public Access cable appearances, where, amongst other things, she accused Howard Beatty's family of SMELLING like drug dealers. She also showed herself to be VERY fond of the "N" word. She then apparently tried to run her baby daddy over with her car and hasn't been heard from much since being sentenced for that incident.
THEN I ran off to get married and had to bring on a "guest blogger" in the form of a friend of my histrionic former newspaper writer friend - namely a sub-compact Tamil-Malaysian spitfire who calls herself "Crankshaft". She of course introduced the English-speaking world to "gambar bogel".
Of course then, in a moment of UTTER frustration, I deleted the whole mess, so no wonder people don't know this is one of the best Cincinnati-based blogs ...