October 5th, 2009

#1753: Now Iran "has the data" to build a bomb

Damn it, how long have I been saying Iran's trying to build nukes?

I just don't know what to say that I haven't already said.

* * *

It's 36° outside. I went out to look at the harvest moon, and noticed that it was really chilly and my breath was visible; then I came inside and checked the temp (on-line).

Sunday was a pretty full day. Mom and I went to church.

I can't really explain why I decided to go to church this week for the first time in a very long one, not without going on a long tedious drone about my religion and my spirituality which almost no one would actually be interested in reading. The short form is that recent events led me to realize that I had been putting it off for far too long, and that this time I was actually going to do it.

...as it turned out it was World Communion Day, and so the church celebrated communion. It's not an every[Sun]day thing with Methodists.

I didn't have any kind of epiphany or anything--I hadn't really expected one--but there were several lessons I could take from the sermon which did apply to my life, though this would probably have been so regardless of my situation. It was a good sermon, a good service, and although I didn't know the tunes to any of the hymns, I mouthed the words.

So after church I was sitting in my rocking chair, reading some of my favorite author's works* and listening to my MP3 player when Mom came in and got my attention: my brother and his family had decided to pay us a visit.

They picked up a pizza from Aurelio's and so we ate pizza and socialized and the Bears game was on. I got to show off my nifty Escort engine to them, and snookered my niece into cutting the "east 40" on the tractor, heh heh. (I did not have to "snooker" very hard. She volunteered to do it, so I only had to show her how to run the tractor.)

...as she came around the maple tree, I recalled a scene from about 13 years ago when she was a toddler, playing in a pile of leaves under that tree.

They left around 3-ish and then I was finally able to get to bed around 4:30. I'd only been up since 2 AM...

*=Me. My stuff. Heh. Joke shamelessly stolen from Joe Haldeman.

* * *

Of late, it seems I can't sleep past 2 AM, more or less, unless I drug myself with Xanax; and I haven't been taking any Xanax.

Even today, after awake until nearly 5 PM, I still only slept until about 2:30. *sigh*

* * *

The actual headline of this article about former Japanese finance minister Nakagawa makes a lot more sense than the link at WorldNetDaily:

"Ex-Japanese finance minister found dead," it says. Wait--he used to be Japanese, but no longer is? Did he emigrate? Or have a nationality-change operation?

Grammar, bitches: learn to use it.

* * *

California is on the rocks. This article lists the many ways that California is screwed up.

Surprising? No. California has been the bleeding edge for liberalism for decades, and provides us with a perfect object lesson in why and how it inevitably fails.

"So where did it all wrong?" the article asks.

Simple: taxes, taxes, and more taxes. And taxes on top of taxes. Taxes drive wealth out; they drive production out.

The article finds hope in the person of Van Jones and other eco-nuts:
California may have sprawling development and awful smog, but it leads the way in environmental issues. Arnold Schwarzenegger was seen as a leading light, taking the state far ahead of the federal government on eco-issues. The number of solar panels in the state has risen from 500 a decade ago to more than 50,000 now. California generates twice as much energy from solar power as all the other US states combined. Its own government is starting to turn on the reckless sprawl that has marked the state's development.

California's attorney-general, Jerry Brown, recently sued one county government for not paying enough attention to global warming when it came to urban planning. Even those, like [Joel Kotkin, an urbanist at Chapman University, in Orange County], who are sceptical about the end of suburbia, think California will develop a new model for modern living: comfortable, yes, but more modest and eco-friendly. Kotkin, who is writing an eagerly anticipated book about what America will look like in 2050, thinks much of it will still resemble the bedrock of the Californian dream: sturdy, wholesome suburbs for all – just done more responsibly. "We will still live in suburbs. You work with the society you have got. The question is how we make them more sustainable," he says.
Here's a news flash: "green jobs" and the "green economy" are bullshit. If solar power and wind power and other "renewable" resources were even remotely competitive with fossil fuels they wouldn't need such huge government subsidies to be implemented.

Government subsidies are not free: they are paid for with taxes, which are always a drag on the economy they affect. And high taxation is how California got into this mess in the first place.

The article blames gerrymandering and "partisan politics" for the mess, but which party, exactly, has consistently been running the California legislature?

* * *

With it being October now, I am thinking I'd better get on the stick and get that Escort finalized before the weather turns really cold....

#1754: Another thing I don't have the money for

Thanks to Steven I'm thinking about ways to solve my anime storage problem which don't involve adding hard drives to the desktop computer.

This NetGear device looks like it would fill the bill nicely, and if the info on that page is to be believed, it connects to a router to allow any computer on the home network to access the data on it.

Problem: $230 before you put any drives in it.

Still, adding a NAS box seems to be the way to go, here. The thing requires minimal configuration and administration; basically you pop drives in, set the thing up, and then dump data to it. If a drive fails, remove it and put in a new one; it rebuilds automatically, and some of these things even let you hot-swap them.

Around $500 would seem to get you about 1.5 TB of reasonably reliable network storage. That is, at present, a lot; and as drives get bigger I could simply swap in larger drives.

Doing this would also require making a few changes to the configuration of the home network, though. I'd want to change where the modem plugs in; I'd also want to get a UPS solely for the modem, router, and NAS. This would mean either running ethernet cable to my Mom's computer, or upgrading her computer to something a little more modern, argh etc. (Mom's computer is a vintage 1998 Compaq Presario desktop. She doesn't want a new one.)

Oh well.

* * *

I want to hit the guy in this picture with a tire iron.

...really, that's all that needs to be said about this.