I’ve built a v3 Category plugin

You should be able to download it through “this link”:/2004/05/27/Categories.pm.

As with the “Archives”:/2004/05/ive-built-a-v3-archive-plugin.html plugin, this is not very elaborate or configurable; feedback is appreciated, preferably to the Blosxom mailing list.

“Media Matters”:http://mediamatters.org/ has a petition to remove Rush Limbaugh from American Forces Radio

They make the point that Donald Rumsfeld has condemned the very actions that Rush (and Ben Stein, and numerous others) have written off as nothing more than schoolboy pranks.

Why, then, is the US Government continuing to broadcast his vile and pussilanimous message to our troops?

“Go!”:http://www.petitiononline.com/mmfa2/petition.html Sign the petition. I’ll still be here when you get back.

Oh, yeah, BTW, have you “heard about the US soldier who was beaten into medical retirement during a training exercise in Gitmo”:http://www.lex18.com/Global/story.asp?S=1891343&nav=EQlpNN9R?

Kerry Google-bombed

Wired News “has a story”:http://www.wired.com/news/politics/0,1283,63557,00.html?tw=wn_tophead_2 about right-wingers google-bombing the word “waffles” to point to Kerry’s site.

I guess around their neck of the woods that counts as reasoned debate.

Yeah, I’m probably just pissed that no one thought to do it to Bush first.

Boy, I hope they don’t choose Alabama

I would hate to have to use a passport to visit family. Thinking about it, I wouldn’t want them to take South Carolina–it’s on the way to Alabama for us–and I think Chet would be disappointed if they took Mississippi.

Why not North Dakota?

Oh, what am I talking about? “These nutjobs”:http://www.christianexodus.org/:

bq. ChristianExodus.org offers the opportunity to try a strategy not yet employed by Bible-believing Christians. Rather than spend resources in continued efforts to redirect the entire nation, we will redeem States one at a time. Millions of Christian conservatives exist, but we are geographically spread out and diluted at the national level. Therefore, we must concentrate our numbers in a geographical region with a sovereign government we can control through the electoral process.

ChristianExodus.org is orchestrating the move of 50,000 or more Christians to one of three States for the express purpose of dissolving that State’s bond with the union. The three States under consideration are Alabama, Mississippi and South Carolina. The exact destination will be chosen by vote of our membership. Our move will commence when the federal government forces sodomite marriages on our local communities or once we reach the 50,000-member mark, whichever comes first.

I understand unemployment is high in Japan

I’m guessing that this is why there are people with enough time to do “wild and silly things with Bento”:http://www-personal.umich.edu/~msittig/bento/.

I wish I could read what I presume to be the ingredients used for each of the pieces.

The scary part? Two words: Bento porn.

I’m sure Jesse Helms would have approved

The North Carolina Republican Party has decided to “deny the Log Cabin Republicans a table at the state convention”:http://www.365gay.com/newscon04/05/051904ncGOP.htm.

Honestly, I’m always baffled at the way various groups keep going back to the GOP even when, after the election, they don’t even bother to leave $20 on the metaphorical dresser.

BTW, if you’re ever in DC

and looking for free WiFi and good coffee, I feel obligated to recommend “Tryst”:http://www.trystdc.com/, in the Adams-Morgan part of town. The posts from Tuesday were all written there while having a cup before a meeting with some potential clients.

Cambridge City Hall

9 years and 11 months ago, Anne and I got married at Cambridge City Hall. We didn’t tell people we knew for varying periods of time, for lots of reasons.

We’re both intensely proud, though, to see that same location being used to officiate some of the first our-Supreme-Court-said-it-was-ok same-sex marriages in this country.

And to all you miserable bastards in the south who rail against it, get a fucking job–Massachussets pays for your laziness, getting $0.75 on the dollar back for each buck it sends to Washington, while most of you get more back than you put in.

I want a poni

After a moment’s disorientation–what, we’re in Italy now?–we decided that Virginia’s Po river had to be a teletubby reference.

We became suspicious, tough, when we noticed the Ni river a couple of miles later. I mean, could they be that obvious? A ??Holy Grail?? reference?

Then we put it together.

I don’t know what more there is to say

“The presidents dog has his own domain name”:http://barney.gov/. Yeah, sure, it’s just a redirector to a spot on the White House website, but still.

There’s also, I feel obliged to mention, the “Presidential Pet Museum”:http://www.presidentialpetmuseum.com/whitehousepets-1.htm.

Quick, which do you pick?

You can distribute Terry Gilliam’s new movie, “The Brothers Grimm”:http://imdb.com/title/tt0355295/, or you can commit to distributing a remake of The Amityville Horror and the latest James Bond film.

“Of course, if you’re an executive at MGM, you pick the latter”:http://scifi.com/scifiwire/art-main.html?2004-05%2F14%2F10.15.film.

Ah, the glories of Photoshop

In fact, I’m always somewhat amused at the verbing of Photoshop. Regardless, though, “the faux Google News feeds of Rumsfeld”:http://www.musicforamerica.org/node/view/21365 are pretty amusing.

“Rumsfeld denies eating Iraqi prison” indeed.

Updating your Treo 600 under Linux

Provided without warranty, don’t blame me if it turns your Treo 600 into a pile of worthless silicon. That it didn’t do it to mine is probably only happenstance.

Go to the “palmOne page for the updater”:http://www.palmone.com/us/support/downloads/treo/treo_600_updater_sprint_v1_20.html.

Contemplate the fact that they do not provide the .prc file you need in any format that is easily accessible to linux users.

Find a friend with a Mac to unstuff the Mac version and give you a copy of the resulting .prc file.

_*MAKE A BACKUP OF YOUR DATA*_: @pilot-xfer -b ~/pilot.backup@

Make sure you know what your user name (and perhaps id) is: @install-user@

Install the Updater: @pilot-xfer -i "Sprint 1.20 Updater.prc"@

Run the update utility from the application menu on your treo.

Watch all the scary warnings flash by. Quake in fear that you’ve just destroyed this very expensive bit of hardware. Do this for roughly ten minutes.

Once it’s done, set your user name (and perhaps id): @install-user -u "Your User Name"@

Now, restore your backup: @pilot-xfer -r ~/pilot.backup@

I had the following .prc files fail to restore. Eyeballing the list, none look problematic–in fact, I like the idea that this might have lightened the load of non-native code. Only time will tell:

Net Prefs.prc
City Time_CiAa_appl_a68k.prc
Address Book_addr_appl_a68k.prc
Card Info_cinf_appl_a68k.prc
Date Book_date_appl_a68k.prc
Date & Time_dttm_panl_a68k.prc
Memo Pad_memo_appl_a68k.prc
Get BC_S7DL_appl_a68k.prc
To Do List_todo_appl_a68k.prc

I have little sympathy for SpamCop

I’ve worked on a service that sends out lots of email. We were very careful to 1) only add people to our system who have requested it (which involves sending out confirmation emails), and 2) not send mail to someone who never wants to hear from us again.

Now anyone who does this sort of work will have immediately spotted that if we send an email in step 1 in order to verify the address, it is possible for someone to have us send emails to arbitrary addresses.

This is where #2 comes it; every email we send out includes a link that will put you on our “Do Not Call” list–get on that list and you’ll never be able to sign up for the service, because we won’t ever send you an email again even if you (or someone else trying to annoy you) asks.

Nonetheless, I’ve had to deal with several SpamCop complaints. Each time it’s the same thing–a forwarded message with wild invective, etc., and, inevitably, SpamCop *never tells us the address the message was sent to!*

Yep, that’s right, it’s a great game of Hide The Ball–“If you’re not a spammer, remove this person’s address. No, we’re not going to give it to you, just do it.”

Usually there’s something in the headers that gives it away–which arguably just proves how stupid a game it is for SpamCop to play–but it’s a waste of time.

That said, it’s unfortunate that it’s Scott Richter “who is suing them”:http://www.clickz.com/news/article.php/3348241, since he’s a fucking spamboy wanker.

Josh Marshall has captured it perfectly for me

bq. Another way to put this might be to say that being the good guys is about what you do, not who you are.

This is why, despite the wretched, vile, but sadly-not-quite-inhuman acts of the al-Queda operative “Bush chose not to pursue, so as not to distract from his desire to go to war with Iraq”:http://dailykos.com/story/2004/3/4/2045/08540, we should continue to pursue the issue of the wretched, vile acts we have perpetrated.

Jane Austin as Baseball historian (and other errata)

I don’t know what to say. As much as I enjoy watching the Durham Bulls, I was spectactularly ignorant of baseball’s history, other than having some notion that it was a 19th-century thing.

“Rivka fixes this”:http://respectfulofotters.blogspot.com/2004_05_01_respectfulofotters_archive.html#10843352196650749, with a discussion of it’s late-18th-century appearance in Jane Austen novels, and further references–ones that also mention “Morris-dancing”:http://www.geocities.com/tokyo/subway/4346/pages/morris.html, natch–from the earliest parts of that century.

And the Steven Jay Gould quote on the page uses the word _tendentious_. So there.

I hate these sorts of articles…

Robert Reich “has an interesting editorial on whether interest rates are artificially low”:http://www.nytimes.com/2004/05/11/opinion/11REIC.html, which is echoed by “Josh Quiggin”:http://www.crookedtimber.org/archives/001836.html and “Brad DeLong”:http://www.j-bradford-delong.net/movable_type/2004_archives/000808.html.

Billmon used to be the one to scare me with economics articles, but now I’m reading more stuff from economists.

A Debian Developer died in a car accident

Manuel Estrada Sainz died in a car accident last night, going home from the Free Software Conference in Valencia, Spain.

Although my actual participation within Debian has been, well, pathetic of late, and I didn’t have any particular interaction with Manuel–I didn’t use any of the packages he maintained–it’s still always somehow affecting to find that someone with whom you had this connection has died.


“Crooked Timber”:http://crookedtimber.org/ has “an amusing post wondering exactly why “Trojan” gets used as a name by various organizations”:religion/.

And yet again, our “real” media seems out to lunch.

While my antipathy for religious fundamentalists both foreign and domestic is, I suspect, pretty obvious, what gets less airtime is then fact that I don’t actually have a problem with religion–examples of people who are given strength and purpose and compassion and belonging by their faith are all around me.

But, let’s face it, it’s the wingnuts who get most of the airtime in the mainstream media. Fortunately, we have PBS.

“NOW with Bill Moyers”:http://www.pbs.org/now/ April 30 show included a segment discussing the large number of Christian pro-choice organizations who showed up at the March for Women’s Lives.

bq.. MOYERS: You no doubt read or heard something about that huge March for Women’s Lives in Washington last weekend.

A single photograph captured it for me. Hundreds of thousands of people, spread across the mall in the heart of the nation’s capitol marching for choice. We took a closer look, and found something that the press all but ignored. Many of these people were there on faith. Our report is produced by Naomi Spinrad.

MOYERS: They came from all over the country to join the largest demonstration for a woman’s right to choose ever held in the nation’s capital.

Despite the sheer size of the crowd, this day was more than a matter of numbers. For thousands of these people, coming here was a pilgrimage. They came as an act of faith, a witness to deeply held beliefs about religion and conscience.

On the fringes of the march were their old adversaries from the religious right, who say the Bible teaches that abortion is murder. The mainstream media often seem to think theirs are the only religious opinions that count.

p. Yeah, it’s the first I’d heard of ’em, too. But it makes me happy to know that they’re out there–and sad that you don’t hear more about them; I guess reporting on moderation and conscience doesn’t sell enough clothes detergent, or whatever.

“I can’t even have a head-on collision in peace”

After “Sling Blade”:http://imdb.com/title/tt0117666/, Billy Bob Thornton wrote, directed, and starred in a second movie, “Daddy and Them”:http://imdb.com/title/tt0166158/.

The cast is improbable–Billy Bob, Laura Dern, Brenda Blethyn, Ben Affleck, Jamie Lee Curtis, Jim Varney, Andy _Fucking_ Griffith–and the family they portray is both grotesque and hilarious.

I’m amazed that I can’t find any information about why this movie, filmed in ’98 or ’99, was released direct to cable in 2001 and then didn’t make it to DVD until late last year.

Oh, the bizarre patterns of nature

You know, there’s not a lot of arguments for believing in some sort of overarching creator figure that I give much credence to. But I have to say, the strange and wonderful things that nature produces, well, they almost convince me, because how could cicadas be anything but “a particularly elaborate joke”:http://www.economist.com/displaystory.cfm?story_id=2647052?

I think Adam Felber sums it up quite well

“Read it here”:http://www.felbers.net/mt/archives/001777.html

bq. That’s when I start coming around full circle, and the fruitlessness of the quest becomes clear. In the end, the Bush presidency is defined by the Bush presidency. It has been amazingly consistent and self-defining in a way that will some day stun mathematicians: Every little tiny action of the administration is actually _a complete representation of the administration itself_. It is, in fact, a fractal presidency.