October 13, 2008 11:13 AM 10/13/08

So I’m looking at the news online yesterday and notice an article that says the National Debt Clock has rolled over and they had to sticky-past a dollar sign on the front so that they could use the original dollar sign display to display the one.

That doesn’t bother me - clocks roll over all the time. But this is the clock that tracks our National Debt.

The article stated that a new clock will be installed in 2009 and it will be able to display a considerably larger number.

Okay. Fine. Wait...WHAT?

So here in the US we’ve got a debt that rivals most debts in the known world (I honestly don’t know if it’s the worst or not) and instead...instead of figuring out how to lower that number...instead of using the broken clock as a talking point to rally the people to make the government fix the problem...we are going to fix the clock.

Talk about curing the symptom and ignoring the disease!

Every single person who hears about this should be screaming, literally screaming, at their congress-critter to find a way to lower that number.

WHY AREN’T WE SCREAMING!

Well...frankly...because we’re not sure it would help.

I mean look at what happened with the bailout. People did a wonderful job of calling their representatives in Washington to prevent pushing that crap through. And we stopped it - once. It was then amended and pushed through anyway.

And while I can’t speak to the changes I’m of the opinion that any part of that bailout should not have been done.

But what a fucking slight of hand that was. “Oh we’ve changed it! It’s not the same bailout plan as the first one!” And people bought that and the corporate losers who’ve been greedily sucking up all the wealth got their cash. It’s disgusting to me and it should be disgusting to most US people but for some reason they don’t seem to care.

If I let my tinfoil speculate I’d suspect something in the water supplies but I don’t think they’re that organized. The truth is that we’ve gotten lazy and apathetic. Partly because we’re not used to controlling our government and partly because we’ve been the fat cats for so long that we just don’t remember how to do anything else right now.

Add to that we’ve been taught to trust the government and the media and doctors and lawyers and...well you get the picture.

Things could be made quite a bit better if we didn’t trust anybody in authority except perhaps emergency personnel and even then only guarded trust.

You know what I’d love to see? I’d love to see every member of our government’s private vehicles papered with the latest national debt number. Nothing damaging but use a big messy splotch of rubber cement so it’s annoying to remove but not difficult.

Plant lawn signs in their yards stating “Due to the national debt and your corrupt government actions we the people feel that your property could better be used as a homeless shelter and we claim it under eminent domain.”

We need more civil disobedience. Nothing nasty. Nothing damaging. Nothing dangerous. Just stuff they have to work to clean up. Stuff that the media can’t ignore if there’s enough of it.

Hang banners from every window that you can that says “Our national debt and our economy is what it is because of corruption and large corporations.” Or something like “Trust no one in congress or the White House.”, and maybe “Your government is lying to you.” Simple statements that everyone can understand. I’d love “Your government is no longer YOUR government!” but I think that would confuse people.

It’s still not quite too late to change this with words and deeds. We’ve still got a little bit of the other boxes left to stand on before we choose the ammo box.

And I’m really hoping that we don’t have to pull out the ammo box...
September 18, 2008 1:41 PM 9/18/08

You can thank my wife for the title.

That and the wasps that are invading our home. I’m meeting the exterminator here this afternoon so he can spray the nest in the outside wall and then hopefully inspect the house to make sure there aren’t any more nests to be dealt with.

II killed three of the damn things this morning in the kitchen. I really really hate bees and wasps since having one fly up into my pants when I was a kid. Not. Fun. Ever since then I’m okay with one or maybe two of them and can kill them but any more than that and I actually start to panic.

Fears like this bother me because they are serious weaknesses. I don’t have more than a couple but they can seriously leave me tangled up so to speak if they overwhelm me.

And besides - I used to _like_ petting the fuzzy bumble bees. :-(

Still need to move more stuff down into the basement. I’ve been distracted by the wasps among other things.

Started playing with the Freeduino unit yesterday just to see how well it would drive a power transistor and it turns out to do okay at that. I still can’t program it from the linux box but that doesn’t bother me as it’s easy enough to add a serial dongle to the G4 out there and plug the Freeduino into that.

Pie today. Definitely pie.

*sigh* Hopefully there won’t be another nest and this will end the terror of the wasps in the house. I’ve got spray-foam to seal up the hole when he’s done.

I’ll probably give the garden the final ka-bosh here this weekend or next. It’s done well for a starter garden but I need to do better next year.

Very likely I’ll start some plants in the garage before spring so they are nice and hardy when they get planted. Of course I’ll have to ask the police to stop by and see them just so I don’t get them called on me. “Oh my god! He’s got green growing things in his garage! He must be growing pot!” *ahem* Nope...never seen that happen to people...nope...

Unless things go very very well I likely won’t get a greenhouse constructed this year. I just don’t have the resources yet. As long as I keep the garage tidy though I should be able to accumulate wood that I can use next spring to make the greenhouse and many other things.

*checks clock on MacBook*

Time to go deal with annoying flying things...
September 12, 2008 11:27 AM 9/12/08

Can we get off this planet now? Or at least out of this country?

Let’s see....

The Republicans are trying to disenfranchise voters in Michigan who are involved with or have been foreclosed upon. (They’re also thinking about doing this in Ohio among other places as well.) This removes a portion of the population that is angry against the current government.

The Senate Judiciary Committee just passed EIPA which basically puts the DOJ as the lapdogs of the media industries to pursue lawsuits against anybody even suspected of sharing copyrighted content. That law also removes many barriers to seizure of possessions in those cases.

The war in Iraq shows no signs of ending.

The war in Afghanistan shows no signs of ending.

We’ve recently told our military that we can pursue and fight into Pakistan without their permission. (There’s another war waiting to start.)

We’re still trying to start a war with Iran.

Our economy is sliding downward regardless of what anyone says. We’re trapped in our own mire.


And we’re sinking rapidly.


Someone elsewhere mentioned the phrase “arranging deck chairs on the Titanic” and it sure does fit. Right now we’re sinking badly and it seems that all but a few people are part of the band playing in the background waiting for the end.


WAKE UP PEOPLE!


Don’t know what to do? Well here’s a list...

VOTE!. It may not make a difference but it can’t help but make a change.

CALL YOUR CONGRESSCRITTER! Do not let them put you on hold for any length of time. Do not accept taking a message. TALK TO THE PEOPLE INVOLVED DIRECTLY. Inundating them with physical phone calls is the only way that I can see that the thoughts of the average man or woman will be heard.

CALL THE MEDIA! Once again - inundation from physical phone calls about a given set of subjects will cause them to sit up and take notice despite how much money they’re getting from their corporate sponsors.

E-mail gets deleted. Faxes get trashcanned. And if the phone calls ALWAYS go to voicemail then THAT is something you can tell the media when you call them.

And if they don’t answer either?

GET YOUR BUTT INTO THE STREETS WITH SIGNS AND LOTS OF THEM. AND VIDEO CAMERAS.

No feces. No urine. No fake blood. Nothing to throw. Just your voices and the signs and the cameras.

Start no fights. If they hit you DON’T hit back. This will force them to show their true colors.

The problem with active protesting is that once you swing a fist or throw an object then THEY BECOME THE MARTYRS AND YOU LOSE ANY CHANCE OF SHOWING THE TRUTH OR MAKING YOUR POINT.

*sigh*

I’m out of time here today but please people AT LEAST DO SOMETHING!
nimitzbrood: (Default)
( Jan. 28th, 2008 10:38 am)
January 28, 2008 10:41 AM

So...we put an offer in on a house on Saturday and it was accepted. The house is a 1955 cedar ranch - red. I’m not going to post a lot of details because there’s still an appraisal, inspection, and closing to go through before we get the keys. We gave the seller the asking price of $169,900 but asked for 3% for closing. Submitted and earnest money check along with the offer and got a call back that evening. (We’ll probably still have to come to the table with some cash for closing but I have a very kind friend that I can ask for it.)

There really isn’t anything we would have to do to move into the place except have DirectTV come by and install a satellite dish (there’s a Dish Network one already on the side of the house) and any electrical stuff I want done immediately. (I’d like to have 220V run to the garage but I’m not sure what that would cost. I’ll have to check on that because if I don’t do it right away then it’ll likely be a long time before I can afford to get it done.)

Anyway I will likely buy two new LCD TVs because I want to reduce our electric usage and our existing TVs are CRT ones. I might even buy three - one for our daughter’s room - and another TiVo unit. All that comes out to about $1400 but with what we save in electricity it will be worth it. (I don’t know - it depends on any fees we have yet to pay.) And after we close I can roll over the credit union loan and pay back some of the closing money right away and still have some cash for the TVs AND still have reserves. The problem of course is getting to the closing point...

So all we’re waiting for at this point is to get all the contract stuff taken care of, have an appraisal, have an inspection, and then close.

A long way to go yet thus why I’m not getting too attached at this point.

There is something I will have looked at though once we buy the house. It currently has a partial basement and a crawl space under the rest of the house. I’ll probably find out how deep the footings are on the house and see if I can’t dig out the crawl space and expand it into a full basement. If the footings are 6 foot or deeper then I should be able to just have them cut the one wall in the partial basement and I’ll just take out a bucket of dirt on a regular basis until it’s empty. Regardless I’ll need to get under there and insulate the floors because there’s no insulation at all under there. But that’s truly a weekend project.

Speaking of projects...

My wife should be bringing home a bunch of newspaper today so we can continue packing the kitchen. Our friend’s stuff is leaving CA on the 4th of February and will be here 7 - 14 days after that. One of the things included in that stuff will be the large china cabinet. I’ve moved that damn thing - it’s heavy. We’re not dragging that thing downstairs. ;-) It’s going to come right in the back door and into the kitchen. That means we need to have our stuff out of the way before then. Not a big deal. I pretty much want us to be packed by the 15th or 20th of next month. I don’t think that’s too unreasonable.

_My_ biggest headache is going to be the stuff in the rack downstairs and the rack itself. That thing was a pain to get in there and I need to take all the systems out of it before I move it. That means being completely down for at least a day or three. Likely less because I fully intend to get the DSL installed and turned on before we walk in the door. That way I can change the configuration files on the firewall, down all the systems, transport them, and then bring them all back up and have them running immediately. The only pain will be DNS changeover at the registrar level because I have some stuff that is not running on my in-house BIND servers. Maybe I should take the time to rectify that before the whole move. It would make my downtime a little less but not too much because I still have to propagate DNS to the root servers. A horse a piece I guess...

*re-reads entire post*

Damn. I’ve become attached. Oh well....
nimitzbrood: (Default)
( Apr. 5th, 2007 11:11 am)
April 5, 2007 11:11 AM

Some ass has been using my wireless when I’m not home so now I have to go and re-do it when I get home from work today.

I changed the name of the network, secured it with WEP 128 (only because I have older devices that don’t support WPA) and filtered the connections by MAC address and the idiot still was able to use my connection.

This is most likely the goob who compromised my other machines as they were pretty secure from outside. I figure that I’ll set up WPA when I get home and connect my wife’s computer and my daughter’s computer to it and my iMac then load up a new mail server from scratch just in case. I’m almost done with the new firewall so that will likely get put in this weekend.

I just got the shipping confirmation for the replacement board for my ipod. I paid two days ago and they are just now shipping it. Fracking slow service if you ask me. And worst of all it’s coming from California so it’ll take about a week to get to me which means that I won’t have an iPod until next week some time if I’m lucky. :-(

I hate having to do all this extra work because it takes time away from other things I could be doing - like getting all that E-Bay stuff sorted out. And the fact that the person went through the extra effort to fracking mess with my connection after I’d secured it tells me that he/she’s an ass. I do my damnedest to leave other people’s crap alone and then people like this come along and dick with stuff just to be a pain or to avoid paying for his own crap. I can see if someone didn’t secure their stuff. That’s still not right but at least there you can make the argument that the person might have wanted to share their connectivity. If the SSID is “notyournetwork” then you’d think that the person in question would get the hint. Of course our housemate brought up the point that such a person might take that as a challenge to “pwn” the network so to speak. *sigh* The world gets more annoying by the day. Is that a sign that I’m getting old?

I’m really irritated right now so I really want to order pie with lunch but I’m not going to. Trying to get back on the bandwagon with my blood sugar stuff. Like I said before - summer’s right around the corner and I have plenty to do that will give me enough exercise to lose weight. Besides exercise itself that is.

Hopefully I’ll still have time in all this to work on cleaning out the stuff in the garage. There’s a lot of stuff in there that can go in the shed while the stuff in the shed comes out and gets sold on E-Bay. I don’t particularly want to but I might have to get rid of all the 80’s BYTE magazines I have. The ones that are my father’s I’ll hold on to but I have a whole stack of them that were from a local library and have the covers marked out with a large red “X” in permanent marker. Makes them worthless for collectors so I’ll likely just toss them.

I think I’m going to pay for an actual tool box this weekend. That will allow me to get rid of the metal dresser or re-use it for other things. I think I’m going to get rid of the metal dresser in the closet in my office too. I can make better use of the space in there. Likely I’ll put the temporary wire-rack shelves that they make for closets in there. This is of course provided we don’t have to move right away. :-(

Looked around at places like houses and apartments for rent. It’s almost worth it to rent a house rather than an apartment due to the cost. A 3 br apartment is about $1200/month while a 3br house is $1400/month. Not happy about those figures but they are within our budget. We’d have to reduce utilities and spending to a minimum but I think we’re getting better at that. Of course the other choice is to rent a 2br that is cheap, put all our stuff in storage, and save a ton of money until we can buy our own place. We could find a 2br for about $800+utilities/month. That’s well within our current budget and would allow us to save money like mad. Of course I’m not sure what I’d do about certain utilities then like DirectTV and our DSL. Ideally I’d like us to be able to live where we are for a little longer - another year or two - and then we should have more than enough to put down on a house of our own. That’s not likely to happen though for a lot of reasons...
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Mike Hebel

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