THE VIEW FROM CHAOS MANOR
View 436 October 16 - 22, 2006
Highlights this week:
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October 16, 2006
There is a new column and mailbag at www.chaosmanorreviews.com
There is a lot of good new mail, but last week and this week.
I am gathering views on Net Neutrality for the column. I don't need passion; what I need is facts, and in particular, from those who want legislation, what, precisely, is wanted. Not what is intended, since it's pretty clear what the intentions are; what legislative remedy is wanted? Who shall be forbidden to do what? And who shall be required to do what? And what powers are to be granted to the authorities to insure compliance and enforcement?
In other words, I haven't time to read impassioned pleas, and I have seen plenty of them in my research; what I want is to know precisely what legislation is wanted, and how it will be enforced.
If you listen to TWiT, I am on this one: http://www.twit.tv/twit73
I have no idea how Leo manages to get this edited and up so quickly.
ALas, I can't get Virtual Apple to open in an IE browser. I had it open in an IE Tab in Firefox but no longer. All I get is the "placeholder" message. Deleting cache files does no good. I have no idea what is wrong here. I had Crush, Crumble and Chomp sort of working but the keys did no good, I couldn't get my monster to move; Perhaps I should have used CAPS LOCK, but now I can't get it to open again. What in the world is a placeholder, who places it, and what's going on? This is a new one on me.
NEVER MIND the problem has fixed itself. It may be that the site was overloaded. Sorry
|This week:||Tuesday, October
The Crush Crumble and Chomp problem is mostly resolved. To use the http://www.virtualapple.org/ site go there (IN IE, not in Firefox) do CAPS LOCK, and go to, for example, C, look ffor Crush Crumble and Chomp and click on that. There are hundreds of old Apple games on there. Hundreds.
Lynne Stewart got two years for being a transmission belt for her terrorist (convicted) clients. The writeup here is reasonably accurate http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=06/10/17/1439229
More work on Inferno yesterday and today. There's also mail.
If you listen to TWiT, I am on this one: http://www.twit.tv/twit73
Is there anyone who knows what the hell is going on regarding these back-dated stock options? The only people I can see who benefit from all this hoohaw are government people collecting fines. The stockholders are being harmed, sometimes badly; the companies are being hurt by losing experienced CEO's often founders; JUST WHO IS BEING PROTECTED FROM WHAT?
Would the world be better off if Steve Jobs is forced out of Apple?
October 18, 2006
To which I can only say, YES!!
SO far it all reads like the document drafted here at Chaos Manor in 1988 and 1989, by the Citizens Advisory Council on National Space Policy, J. E. Pournelle, Ph.D., Chairman.
General Graham took part in that meeting, as did Lowell Wood and a number of others.
We urged that policy on Bush I, as did his Chairman of the National Space Council, VP Dan Quayle, but Bush did not sign it, and Clinton certainly wouldn't.
October 18, 2006
I don't have much mail on the new National Space Policy, and the few items I do have say in essence "it's not real, this will be business as usual, and NASA will sabotage any actual military space effort."
I also note that North Korea threatens war. US space access assurance, denial of space to enemies, and protection of US space assets is key to US military capability. I would presume that whatever their other deficiencies, the President, Secretary of Defense, and Joint Chiefs of Staff understand this very well.
And the President did sign a National Space Policy that looks a lot like the one we wrote for Reagan in 1988 but which was not adopted by Bush the First.
Sign of the times?
File this under rumors:
I heard a story on the radio about a relative of DiMaggio saying that her mother knew who murdered Marilyn Monroe.
There are all kinds of stories about Marilyn Monroe in June DiMaggio's book.
This surfaces every now and then. Perhaps it's time I told my own Marilyn Monroe story.
I never met Marilyn Monroe. We didn't come to California until two years after she was dead. After I got to Los Angeles I met and became friends with Stan Progar, who had been a senior editor at the Los Angeles Herald-Examiner when it was a Hearst paper. Progar told me that he had investigated Monroe's supposed suicide, and had evidence that Robert Kennedy was in Los Angeles that night, and there was evidence that Robert Kennedy had visited Monroe the night she died. He had sources, and the story was ready to run, when it was spiked by the intervention of Hearst himself. I have no verification of this. I never met Wm Randolph Hearst. I do know Will Hearst, but I have never discussed this with him, and I doubt he knows this story.
About a week after Progar told me that story, I was having coffee with Progar in the Brown Derby in Beverly Hills when Joe DiMaggio came in. Stan called him to our booth, introduced me to him, and told a brief summary of his story (which I am sure he had told DiMaggio before). DiMaggio said he believed all of that; that he was certain Marilyn was murdered to prevent her from talking about her White House visits with John Kennedy and her less well known affair with Robert Kennedy. DiMaggio insisted that Marilyn was going to remarry him, and she would never commit suicide. He claimed the murder investigation was fixed by the Attorney General of the United States.
This would have been about 1969. I don't believe I ever met Dimaggio again.
I find that I am not the only one DiMaggio told this to:
I know nothing more than this. I do not know Stan's sources for establishing that Robert Kennedy was in Los Angeles the night Monroe died, and DiMaggio offered no evidence other than his beliefs. The Los Angeles coroner ruled her death a suicide, and I never met any LAPD detectives who thought otherwise although I have heard rumors that some LA cops had their doubts. It's one of those stories that never seems to die, but one would have thought that if there were something substantive there, it would have come out by now. The DiMaggio's have been hinting for decades, but never came forward with anything specific.
We have a great deal of mail this morning.
O wad some Pow'r the giftie gie us
Having just read some of the comments about my participation on TWiT last August, I was reminded of Burns.
I seem to have polarized much of the audience...
I do have a problem with some panels: I tend to think in paragraphs, not sentences. There may be important thoughts that can be summarized in a single sentence, but I don't generally have the ability to do that.
Every now and then David Em and I think we ought to do some kind of show, but the technical requirements for producing these get to be overwhelming. I suspect it's back to writing. In any event I tried to take the earlier comments seriously for TWiT 73.
Orson Scott Card's latest essay, this time on Groupthink:
Actually, the first part of Scott's essay, on "Theoretics" and the end of English in Universities, is at least as important as the groupthink section about physics. But the physics is important:
Do scientists understand what Scott is saying here? Let me repeat:
Is this where rationalism has taken us? Because to most of us, the universe does seem to make sense. It's not easily understood, but we have known that since Biblical times.
"My thoughts are
not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,' says the Lord.
But we do understand much of this universe. Now Science is saying that none of it makes any sense at all? We have cast out all of religion, from Aquinas to Kierkegaard, because Science was a better explanation; and now?
I am reminded once more of my Voodoo Sciences essay, which seems more applicable today than when I first wrote it. Alas, the remedy I proposed is less likely now in these days of peer review and groupthink.
October 20, 2006
I am preparing an essay on net neutrality for the column. It's complicated because there are multiple issues: technological and political, the nature of "fair play" in a competitive world that claims to be in favor of equality, and the efficiency of government as a means of bringing about a given result, given what I have chosen to call Pournelle's Iron Law of Bureaucracy. All these factors must be considered before we can reach an intelligent position on this.
It is all complicated by conflicts of interest; make no mistake about that. Some of those who claim to represent your interests may think they do, but they don't. Others want results you would be pleased with, but the means they propose to get those results are likely to result in a cure far worse than any disease we now have.
On TWiT this week, Dvorak said that if we don't get Net Neutrality legislation, we will end up having access to Google at 2400 Baud. Were that true, then there'd be no argument about what is the interest of the user community; but is it true? Is anything like this remotely likely absent legislation. Anyway, these are the questions to be addressed. See next week's column.
Rush Limbaugh is running a diatribe against "Cut and Run Conservatives" and thinks there are none since no one calls in to passionately defend the notion of allowing the Republicans to lose as a lesson to them. He is wrong, of course. There are many conservatives who in disgust intend to stay home, but they do not do so in joy.
I understand his point. I intend to vote this election, and although I do not believe the Republicans deserve to win -- they have shown they do not govern well, and have grown fat with power -- the prospects of Speaker Pelosi are less attractive. The way to close the Southern Border is not to elect the Open Borders Party. The way to reform foreign policy is not precipitate retreat and dismantling of Strategic Defense. The way to energy independence is not to put even greater obstacles in front of nuclear power while spending money on moonbeams and fairy wheels. The way to better emergency management through building local civil defense organizations is not to elect the party that invented FEMA and destroyed Civil Defense.
The Republicans have shown they are not fit to rule. Alas, the Democrats have no better prospects. The Democrats didn't get us into a ground war, but they did get us into war in the Balkans where we have far less national interest than we do in Iraq. The Republicans took us into Afghanistan and then Iraq. The Democrats would not have taken us into Afghanistan, and would have imposed even heavier restrictions on domestic energy production.
I long for the days of Tweedledee and Tweedledum, of parties that had little differentiation; but those days are long gone. I long for the days when party activists, self-selected precinct workers, ran power=brokered national Conventions. Those days are long gone. The election matters. A Democratic House will not enforce immigration law or build border fences, nor fund Strategic Defense and Assured Access to Space.
I do not like either of the major parties. My own party would be Whig.
Lincoln broke with the Whigs to form the Republican party. I don't care to get into extensive debates on this; if you want to know more about Whiggery see Edmund Burke's writings. Try his Appeal from the New to the Old Whigs. http://www.ourcivilisation.com/smartboard/shop/burkee/extracts/chap17.htm
I don't intend to get into debates over the views of Webster and Charles Francis Adams; they were men of their times, and held the view of their times, and conducting politically correct inquisitions over such men is a waste of time. I will say this:
I would rejoice greatly if the election were between Libertarians and Burkean Whigs, for I would not fear the outcome.
October 21, 2006
I fail to understand the latest flap over elections.
If any citizen is so dumb as to be intimidated by a letter pointing out that voting by non-citizen resident immigrants (and by illegals) is a felony, who in his right mind WANTS that citizen to vote?
October 22, 2006
I'm writing the column, mostly about "net neutrality". We have mail.
This is a day book. It's not all that well edited. I try to keep this up daily, but sometimes I can't. I'll keep trying. See also the monthly COMPUTING AT CHAOS MANOR column, 8,000 - 12,000 words, depending. (Older columns here.) For more on what this page is about, please go to the VIEW PAGE. If you have never read the explanatory material on that page, please do so. If you got here through a link that didn't take you to the front page of this site, click here for a better explanation of what we're trying to do here. This site is run on the "public radio" model; see below.
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