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Mail 487 October 8 - 14, 2007
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|This week:||Monday October
Brown backs down.
For good reasons.
Freedom of speech in the UK--
Secret cremations hide Burma killings--
Don't tax you; don't tax me; tax the guy under the tree. £25,000 per year fee to live in the UK--
Comparison of healthcare in Europe--
Official Saudi web site for fatwas--
Medical students get picky about religion--
Working around patents with evolutionary design--
Harry Erwin, PhD, Program Leader, MSc Information Systems Security, University of Sunderland.
Weblog at: <http://scat-he-g4.sunderland.ac.uk/~harryerw/blog/index.php>
Beep, Beep, Beep Footnote
The YouTube clip tickled a memory.
In 1963 I was assigned to a small skunkworks. We made Fidel birthday presents for the Company, smoke for the Army, and document destructors for the State Department. Our second-to-last version of a big document burner turned out too large for on-site testing so we had to take it to Wallops Island. There my boss, who had been in the munitions business even before WW2, encountered some old buddies from Redstone Arsenal. Our Technical Escort Unit ran late with the test stuff; I ended up listening to old pros shop talk for three days and had the sense to keep quiet.
Back in 1956 Redstone Arsenal was testing heat shield materials for re-entry vehicles. Reasonable: You don’t want to toss a fusion bomb half-way around the planet just to have it melt on the way down. They used three stage rockets for sub-orbital shoots. The Navy recovered the test nose cones in the south Atlantic. I can not remember if they launched from Wallops or the east Florida coast, but the tests went really well. The Navy recovered everything on the first try and the rocket motors turned out to be way more reliable than expected. They finished ahead of schedule and a lot under budget. Somebody suggested they try for orbit with the leftover pieces which, for security reasons, had no scrap value and would have to be destroyed in any case. von Braun was not a hard sell. They assembled a four stage vehicle with a 5 pound radio transmitter in the top stage and were ready to boogie. Unfortunately, there was a snitch and Ike got word of the party.
1956 was a bad year for Ike despite his re-election. He screwed up the Suez Crisis, the consequences of which we are still suffering; he had the heart attack; and he decided to send a two-star to the launch site to cancel the party. The general made it by two hours. The reasoning was that “Space is to be a peaceful civilian enterprise.” The participants estimated their odds of success at 4:1 with no public consequences if the shoot was a bust.
So, almost as bad a decision as Suez.
After the two Sputniks of 1957 and the spectacular meltdown of “peaceful civilian” Vanguards on the launch pad, the mass hysteria (completely unjustified) got so bad that Ike had to eat dirt and get von Braun to pretty please cobble up a second stage for a Redstone missile to put an American satellite into orbit and calm things down. The first try was successful, but it was a damn ugly vehicle.
According to the old-timers, an account of the 1956 episode was published somewhere, but I have never seen it cited and do not have a Nexus-Lexis account to do a proper search. It is, after all, just a footnote now, although in its own small way quite illuminating.
Eisenhower faced some really tough decisions. He was wrong about Suez, as wrong as he could be.
I was a very junior engineer concerned mostly with human factors in 1956, and I never heard this story. I do know that in 1956 there were serious talks (Fred Singer was involved in them) with Disney to do a private satellite called MOUSE (Minimum Orbital Unmanned Satellite, Earth) and that may have involved this program.
Re: We never catch wise.
"And we never catch wise", you say. Well, that isn't true. We _do_ catch wise, pretty much every time this sort of thing happens. The problem is that it's such a nickel-and-dime situation that we don't care.
Ten percent of my telephone bill comes out to three dollars a month. But on the other side of the equation--the revenue-collector's side--you're talking about a big pile of money. They have far more incentive to keep it than any one voter has to eliminate it; and they can turn that ten-percent tax elimination into a process that costs individual voters far more time than three dollars is worth. And when it's all said and done, I get...three dollars.
Sure, if you added up every tax I paid, and put it all in one big pot, it's a lot of money, and I'd like to have it back. But I'd have to fight a six-month battle over each and every line-item on the budget, and it would be a tiny pittance for each successive victory. And the people I'm fighting hold all the cards; they can create three new taxes for every one I get struck down.
As always, the solution to this sort of thing is to choose responsible people to govern us; a talent which the American voter has never displayed. When all the choices are good, things work well; but once the rot sets in it cannot be stopped without burning down the whole tree. And indeed, we brought it on ourselves, for the most part; when you devote forty years to pushing an ideology telling us that morality does not exist, all motives are suspect, and mindless legalism is the only salvation, is it surprising that people start to act the way they do?
- Roland Dobbins
Now THERE'S an alternate history!
|This week:||Tuesday, October
something that might be of interest to your readers that Ursula K. Le Guin contacted me about: Cory Doctorow of boingboing.net infringed her copyright by reprinting the entirety of her short story "On Serious Literature" on boingboing without authorization; he misrepresented her intent in his copy; he omitted her copyright notice; and he instead placed a Creative Commons license on it indicating that others can freely copy and alter her story.
Here are the relevant facts:
- URL: http://www.boingboing.net/2007/07/04/ursula-leguin-rips-i.html Assuming this may shortly be removed or changed, an original would also be visible at ARCHIVE LINK (search in that page for "Ursula", about 1/3 of the way down). Googling on "boingboing ursula le guin chabon" shows a number of other copies made by boingboing readers (assumedly believing the CC license granted them permission).
- Her piece was published, with permission, in several places including Ansible, http://news.ansible.co.uk/a240.html#leguin, which Doctorow identifies as his source. Ansible gave no permission for anyone to copy her story, and indeed it carries Ms. Le Guin's copyright notice; a notice that was omitted in the boingboing copy.
- The boingboing copy is of the entire text of the short story, which would not be covered under Fair Use. Doctorow has spoken widely on copyright matters and the limits of Fair Use, so he should be aware that copying an entire work is not permitted.
- Doctorow and boingboing, of which he is billed as a principal, operate for personal gain via advertising revenue, merchandise sales, publicity for his books, etc. Under copyright law, copyright infringement for commercial advantage may be considered a criminal offense. (Removal of a copyright notice and knowingly placing a Creative Commons license on a work without authorization may also be illegal.)
- The original publication correctly identifies that Ms. Le Guin's story is in response to a quote from a woman named Ruth Franklin, which she wrote in a book review in Slate Magazine. Doctorow's headline is "Ursula LeGuin rips into Slate Magazine" and calls it "Slate Magazine's statement" that Ms. Le Guin takes exception to. Slate Magazine does not list Ruth Franklin as an editor or anyone empowered to speak for the magazine. A more correct headline and text would be that "Ursula Le Guin takes exception to Ruth Franklin's statement," though understandably this might not attract as many readers to boingboing since Ruth Franklin is relatively unknown compared to Slate Magazine. Ms Le Guin feels that both she and Slate Magazine are justified in resenting the misrepresentation.
- Below her story on the boingboing site it says, "This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License permitting non-commercial sharing with attribution." This is linked to http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.5 which states "You are Free: to Share -- to copy, distribute and transmit the work; to Remix -- to adapt the work" (for noncommercial purposes with attribution). This is incorrect. Ms. Le Guin has not placed this work under such a license and retains these rights. Ms. Le Guin has not given blanket permission for everyone to copy or create derivatives (which can include film, TV adaptations, etc.). Numerous copies of her piece have been discovered on the web and attributed to boingboing, illustrating that many people are being mislead by this incorrect application of a Creative Commons license.
- Because this Creative Commons license appears on apparently every page on boingboing.net -- including pages with user comments, photographs, videos, and any pages that may use material beyond the limits of fair use -- it may also be leading visitors to believe that other people's copyrighted works are covered under Creative Commons licenses when they are not. While it is common for web sites to carry blanket copyright notices in footers, an overly broad blanket copyright notice in a footer would induce a would-be copier to seek permission, and thus correctly ascertain the copyright status of a piece (i.e. no harm is done), whereas an overly broad Creative Commons license encourages visitors to copy, without asking, pieces that should be asked about (causing possible harm to the copyright owner, such as in this case to Ms. Le Guin).
Doctorow's copyright infringement will cause Ms. Le Guin a significant amount of work to get the numerous copies of this removed that boingboing readers believed they had the right to reprint. This unauthorized, widespread reprinting may also damage the value of this story to publishers and cost Ms. Le Guin future reprint sales. The misrepresentation may improperly give readers the impression that Ms. Le Guin has a grievance with Slate Magazine that she does not. It may be difficult to stop future copying by readers who believed the work was released under a Creative Commons license. These problems may happen to others as well, given boingboing's quoting practices and pervasive placement of CC licenses.
Given Doctorow's intense interest in issues of copyright, it is easy to imagine that he has let his wishes run ahead of reality, and so committed some serious ethical and legal errors, which he might wish to begin to redress by taking the Le Guin piece off his site and putting an apology in its place.
--Dr. Andrew Burt As approved by Ursula K. Le Guin
Permission is granted to copy this message elsewhere.
Fascinating. Doctorow went half mad over SFWA's action against scribd http://www.boingboing.net/2007/08/30/science-fiction-writ-1.html in which the Science Fiction Writers of America attempted to act in a massive violation of copyright and inadvertently included one of Doctorow's works in a takedown order. I told that story in Chaos Manor Reviews.
One presumes that Doctorow will plead his copyright violation was a mistake. It is not an explanation that he would accept from SFWA.
It is an old maxim of equity that he who seeks equity must do equity.
Subject: Dr. Burt's letter
That is truly pathetic. I hope it's not the best Dr. Burt can come up with. I don't really have the time or the patience to refute Dr. Burt's letter in detail, but I've embedded some comments below.
As Dr. Burt must know, there is no requirement to publish a copyright notice on material that is re-used under Fair Use.
The entire work comprises *one paragraph*. Quoting a single paragraph has always been considered Fair Use. Can anyone point to a case where quoting one paragraph has been successfully prosecuted as copyright infringement?
It's a real stretch to claim that BoingBoing placed a Creative Commons license on anything other than its own content. As Dr. Burt admits elsewhere in his letter, it's common and accepted practice to place a site copyright notice on each page of a web site. You do it, and I do it. Everyone does it. And it's widely understood that that copyright notice applies only to original material, and not to quoted material. If you post this message on your web page, no reasonable person could believe that you are claiming copyright on my words.
Again, this is a real stretch. Slate published the article in question, which in the absence of any disclaimer means that Slate endorses and is responsible for what is said in the article. The only exception to this rule are Letters to the Editor and similar features, where it's clear that the text is the opinion of the author rather than the opinion of the publisher. If I write an article for, say, Make Magazine, it's certainly valid for someone subsequently to report that "Make Magazine says...".
Give me a break. Damage the value of the story to publishers? Cost Ms. Le Guin future reprint sales? It's one bloody paragraph.
So, Mr. Burt attempts to equate the Fair Use quoting of one paragraph with his attempted abuse of the DMCA? I say attempted only because of Mr. Burt's incompetence in filing a pseudo take-down notice that did not meet the requirements of the DMCA. Had he filed his notice in correct form, he and presumably his organization would have been subject to extremely heavy penalties.
-- Robert Bruce Thompson
Gander sauce, surely? If Doctorow had not made such a flipping big deal out of the inclusion of one of his documents -- one without his name on it, posted by a third party -- in a takedown order directed to what was a massively pirate web site out raising money on traffic generated by pirate documents -- no one would have noticed or cared that Doctorow is also in technical violation.
Incidentally, I pretty thoroughly dislike the practice of chopping messages up and writing little paragraphs in between them.
And your "attempted abuse of the DMCA" is more than over the top. No one intentionally violated anyone's rights in the SFWA case, the worst that happened to anyone was that for a few hours their open documents were not posted on a site whose major attraction was through giving away stolen works, and in fact no real harm was done to anyone except the pirates.
I can agree that what Doctorow did here was trivial -- but then so was the "attempted abuse of the DMCA". Policing pirate web site, particularly those who have raised millions in venture capital, is difficult; and your bile is showing here.
If the libertarian position is that information ought to be free and those who attempt to defend author rights are to be held to a highly technical set of standards while those like Doctorow who want everything to be free as in beer are not, then you do that position no favors and certainly do not make it more attractive.
Scribd deliberately made it very difficult to get them to take down works that were very obviously stolen property, piracy, and tried to hide behind the laws and their babble about fair play. Doctorow stepped up to defend these pirates. Yes, there were errors made in combating these people, but the effect of those errors was easily remedied; when you have given away copies of other people's works, often their entire life work, that is not so easily remedied. Ask Chalker's widow.
I do not understand the automatic rush to defend pirates and thieves who use other people's work to draw traffic to their web site so that they can sell advertisements and raise money. They are using other people's work to make money. I see no reason why one ought automatically to assume they are right and the authors are always attempting to abuse the DMCA.
It suddenly occurs to me: Doctorow was unhappy that his free work was not available for download from a site which gets much of its traffic from theft and piracy. Think about that. He was unhappy that the distribution of his work was impeded. He sought to profit from the traffic directed to the pirate site and went mad when that "right" was thwarted.
Under that logic those who bought advertisements on the pirate site have a right to be unhappy when its traffic is decreased by authors reclaiming their works. Sheesh.
Response to one of Mr. Thompson's points -
Mr. Thompson asked a question while rebutting Dr. Burt (http://www.jerrypournelle.com/mail/mail487.html#Tuesday):
"Can anyone point to a case where quoting one paragraph has been successfully prosecuted as copyright infringement?"
The answer is yes. Ashleigh Brilliant has successfully file copyright infringement suits for several of his writings, and they are all one *sentence* long. Examples are available on Mr. Brilliant's web page at: http://www.ashleighbrilliant.com
He has on his web site (with permission and full attribution) a copy of a Wall Street Journal article about himself and his successful fights to protect his copyrighted epigrams. That page is http://www.ashleighbrilliant.com/WSJ.htm. However, the page is remarkably hard to read so I'll quote the relevant portion here. Brilliant cites "Exactly How Many Brilliant Thoughts Are There? 5,632." by Amy Stevens, published in The Wall Street Journal, January 6, 1992, front page. Copyright of the article attributed to 1992 Dow Jones & Co. Inc., 1992.
*begin quote* While Mr. Brilliant attempts to make the prose timeless, it wasn’t until 1979 that the legal system helped make it profitable. In a case against a heat-transfer decal company that appropriated three expressions (including "I have abandoned my search for the truth and am now looking for a good fantasy"), a federal judge in Los Angeles ruled that Mr. Brilliant’s works were "epigrams" entitled to full copyright protection, as distinct from mere "short phrases," which can’t be copyrighted.
That decision, and an $18,000 damage award, encouraged Mr. Brilliant to demand money from others. He’s written more than 350 threatening letters to alleged infringers, and has filed and won a half dozen copyright cases. *end quote*
As to the amount of a work that can be used under fair
use provisions, I suggest a quick glance at Stanford University's Copyright
and Fair Use information:
Of particular relevance are "3. The Amount and Substantiality of the Work Taken" and in the following section, "Too Small for Fair Use: The De Minimis Defense".
I don't have the page open at the moment, but if I recall correctly, Doctorow's text was less than a third of the Le Guin text he copied, so I doubt that a De Minimis defense would stand.
I don't suppose that you get many messages from terrorists,
A seventeen year old in the UK has been charged under the terrorism act for owning a copy of "The Anarchists Cookbook", a work that I understand was first disseminated by the CIA. It appears that the accused had neither planned nor carried out and terrorist act and that the mere posession of information useful to a terrorist was enough for a criminal charge to be brought.
Your correspondent has to admit having spent two years studying slaughter in all its aspects, and although this was nearly fifty years ago he still remembers much of what he learnt. Before this foolish prosecution was started you correspondent regarded himself as an ordinary law abiding citizen who happened to be of an age that meant that he had been conscripted into the army. Now I am at a loss. Should I plan some outrage? Should I become a career criminal and vanish into the underworld? I'm damned if I know.
October 10, 2007
Using the evolution technique to develop **hardware** can possibly result in the discovery of new laws of physics (or, at the very least, totally unexpected applications of existing laws -- which can amount to the same thing in many case). In this case, one has a physical device that one can manufacture and, step-by-step, learn what it is actually doing. After all, a person or team can be in the center of the actual manufacture of the evolution-designed device.
**Software** is "another kettle of fish entirely." You can end up with a program that performs the task that you want, but have no idea whatsoever how it works: Try analyzing several billion lines of code that were randomly put together until they produced the output you wanted in the time you required and fit into the space available -- no other restrictions (implying either the use of machine-language directly or some recursive language like LISP to develop its own commands from scratch -- some of these commands might be a million steps long). After all, if it works, it works, as far as the "design system" is concerned. Thus, you will not only have possibly the ultimate "spaghetti code" billions of lines long, but have no idea of even how it works in the first place -- AND (sci-fi horror-movie trailer music here) what **other** things is it doing at the same time. The HAL-like simulation JOSHUA "hiding" in the super-duper computer WHOPPER in the movie WARGAMES, while the WHOPPER is doing its regular work at the same time and not even noticing the enormous JOSHUA module is running in the background, as an example. Your iPOD might moonlight as the Evil Overlord and be in the process of taking over the world like those computers in the FORBIN PROJECT; how would you know? It isn't in your original iPOD software design specs, but they didn't say **it couldn't do that too**!!
On top of that, such software is **totally impossible** for human beings to decipher -- they simply would not live long enough. While you could develop a software HACKER avatar, who could decipher code at the speed of the computer itself, that artificial intelligence system still has to somehow "distil" what it has found out into a form that a normal human can comprehend. This is probably simply not possible. Think about trying to understand how a quantum-computer-based human-size-neural-network artificial intelligence "thinks" when trying to solve something: The patterns of parallel processing involves 100,000,000,000 neurons, each with perhaps up to 10,000 connections with both neighbors and selected neurons up to the far side of the machine (as with the human brain). Each "thought" is an ON-OFF pattern (assuming that only 2-value logic is used in the brain for each synapse, which is not proven) more complicated than many of the Mandelbrot Set pictures and these are chained together into "thinking processes" millions of thoughts long. Even if the HACKER sim could figure it out, it could not tell any human about it other than in the most low-level crude way (Caveman say: "Man go inside big metal bird; it go up" to describe a Space Shuttle launch and everything associate with it).
Debugging? That's a laugh!! Only by putting it through another evolution process for each "bug" you find can you squash that particular bug, but that will probably (NO, CERTAINLY!) create NEW bugs -- there is no such thing s "wringing out the bugs"; the concept simply does not apply.
Holy Computer, Batman -- Now what?!!
Subject: PDF watermarking
I just purchased several ANSI documents from webstore.ansi.org. They generate and watermark each document with my oder number and name. This watermark appears at the bottom of each page as a footer. It looks nice, but there is no doubt who it is licensed to. They know it is me, because a credit card was used to purchase the document and the names matched.
Sounds like something you and other authors could use to sell ebooks.
SUITABLE FOR AGES 0 TO 1
Scientific American may grumble about the sexist disparity of marketing chemistry sets for boys and lab technician sets for girls back in the Ask Mr Wizard era,but liability lawyers have been busy driving the number of chemicals in chemistry sets down to literally zero
This was brought to light by a PBS Wired Science feature on the demise of chemical availability , but science teachers should blame the nanny state for the growing infantilization of science education.
Just an uninformed rumination about Sputnik (and Gagarin): maybe Ike and his advisers knew that if the US had launched the first orbital flight, the Russians would have made an international incident out of our "invasion" of Soviet air space -- which they would have certainly defined as a USSR-shaped cone from the center of the earth to the edge of the Universe and beyond. Maybe Ike killed any attempts to achieve orbit until the Russians did it first and established the precedent of its legality, both for unmanned and manned vehicles.
It would be pretty to think that, once upon a time, our government had that kind of foresight.
Sounds like you may have a touch of this...
Can't remember whether I've shared this with you before . . .
A.A.A.D.D. - - Age Activated Attention Deficit Disorder. This is how it manifests:
I decided to wash my car. As I start toward the garage, I notice that there is mail on the hall table. I decide to go through the mail before I wash the car. I lay my car keys down on the table, put the junk mail in the trash can under the table, and notice that the trash can is full.
So, I decide to put the bills back on the table and take out the trash first. But then I think, since I'm going to be near the mailbox when I take out the trash anyway, I may as well pay the bills first.
I take out my checkbook that is on the table, and see that there is only there is only one check left. My extra checks are in my desk in the den, so I go to my desk where I find the bottle of soda that I had been drinking.
I'm going to look for my checks, but first I need to push the soda aside so that I don't accidentally knock it over. I see that the soda is getting warm, and I decide I should put it in the refrigerator to keep it cold.
As I head toward the kitchen with the soda, a vase of flowers on the counter catches my eye--they need to be watered. I set the soda down on the counter, and I discover my reading glasses that I've been searching for all morning.
I decide I better put them back on my desk, but first I'm going to water the flowers. I set the glasses back down on the counter, fill a container with water and suddenly I spot the TV remote. Someone left it on the kitchen table. I realize that tonight when we go to watch TV, we will be looking for the remote, but nobody will remember that it's on the kitchen table, so I decide to put it back in the den where it belongs, but first I'll water the flowers.
I splash some water on the flowers, but most of it spills on the floor. So, I set the remote back down on the table, get some towels and wipe up the spill.
Then I head down the hall trying to remember what I was planning to do.
At the end of the day: the car isn't washed, the bills aren't paid, there is a warm bottle of soda sitting on the counter, the flowers aren't watered, there is still only one check in my checkbook, I can't find the remote, I can't find my glasses, and I don't remember what I did with the car keys.
Then when I try to figure out why nothing got done today, I'm really baffled because I know I was busy all day long, and I'm really tired. I realize this is a serious problem, and I'll try to get some help for it, but first I'll check my e-mail.
Do me a favor, will you? Forward this message to everyone you know, because I don't remember to whom it has been sent.
Boy it's tough getting old......
Naw, couldn't be...
Regarding terrorist psychology
I thought this might be of interest.
The links below are for a lecture given by Andy Thomson about the mindset and psychological background of suicide bombers.
He raises some interesting points and I would be interested in your thoughts on the matter.
The talk is on YouTube via the following 3 links (each link is about 30 minutes, the last link is for the Q&A session after the main lecture).
Re:Beep Beep Beep
Dr. Pournelle, If I remember correctly, Sir Arthur Clarke asserted that there was an effort to launch a first sattelite that was quashed. This was in Time-Life Books "Man and Space" or similar title, pre-1970, I believe.
Respectfully, Susan's Dad.
October 11, 2007
However, the first response you have there (from Robert Somebody) misses two important points:
- whether the work is one paragraph or one sentence, it is not Fair Use to copy it in its entirety without permission. It is not a question of whether this is a reasonable law, but it is the law.
- if SFWA's takedown request to Scribd was so non-compliant with the DMCA rules regarding such takedowns, why did Scribd accept it as being valid, and remove the material? There can only be two answers to that: (a) Scribd believed that SFWA's request was fully valid and they were acknowledging their fault, only to backpedal later when Cory and the EFF started claiming otherwise, or (b) Scribd believed from the beginning that SFWA's request was invalid, and did the takedowns expecting that their attorneys (the EFF) and Cory would make hay over the issue. Obviously, Scribd is either poorly versed on the law, or wickedly devious in its exploitation of other people's rights.
You may, btw, use any of these points, paraphrased or via direct quote, to refute Robert, if you choose.
Sean P. Fodera
Subj: Larry Summers discovers bias against conservatives on university faculties
I am shocked! Shocked, I tell you! That there might be bias against conservatives on university faculties!
Subject: US military backing SSPS
Dear Dr. Pournelle:
The National Security Space Office just released a
report recommending construction of a demonstration 10-megawatt space solar
I thought you might want to look at this:
"About a year ago some of the people at the US National Security Space Office began looking into space-based solar power (SBSP) as a technology in the near-term strategic interests of the United States. At first the participants were skeptical, and the "phase 0 study" went along with no official funding. In a rather innovative move, they organized the study as a series of internet-based (bulletin-board and email) discussions, with the wordpress site open to the public, and a closed experts-only discussion using Google Groups. Initially expecting only a dozen or so interested parties, the discussion grew to include over 170 people with past expertise and interest in the issues. The final report was released Wednesday morning; it provides an excellent broad-brush review of the status of SBSP, showing immense potential, but also a number of challenges that appear only surmountable with a strong government commitment to the project. The big question is where it goes from here — NASA? DARPA? The new ARPA-E? Or something new? I was able to attend the press conference, which included Buzz Aldrin in an announcement of a new alliance to push for implementing the recommendations of the report."
Some links at the site.
Don -- Donald W. McArthur
Gore climate film's 'nine errors'
A High Court judge who ruled on whether climate change film, An Inconvenient Truth, could be shown in schools said it contains "nine scientific errors".
Date: Thu, 11 Oct 2007 01:41:03 -0700 From: A2CSoul@hawaii.rr.com
Subject: United States Treasury Department
Good day to you, I am Henry M. Paulson, Jr., Secretary of the United States National Treasury. President George W. Bush nominated me to be the 74th Secretary of the Treasury on June 19, 2006. The United States Senate unanimously confirmed me to the position on June 28,2006 and I was sworn into office on July 10, 2006 by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts. As Treasury Secretary, I am the President'sleading policy advisor on a broad range of domestic and international economic issues.
Before coming to Treasury, I was Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Goldman Sachs. I joined Goldman Sachs in 1974 in the Chicago Office and became a partner in 1982. From 1983 until 1988, I headed up Investment Banking Services for the Midwest Region and became Managing Partner of the Chicago Office in 1988. In 1990, I was named Co-head of the firm's investment Banking Division, and in 1994 I rose to the position of President and Chief Operating Officer. In 1998, I was named Co-Senior partner, and with the firm's public offering in 1999, became Chairman and CEO.
Prior to joining Goldman Sachs, I was a member of the White House Domestic Council, serving as staff Assistant to the President from 1972 to 1973,and as staff Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Defense at the Pentagon from 1970 to 1972 I graduated from Dartmouth in 1968, where I was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and All Ivy, All East, and honorable mention All American for football. I received an M.B.A. from Harvard in 1970. I and my wife, Wendy, have two children, Amanda and Merritt.
The United Nations has given me an Instruction also with the World Bank to wire a sum of $10m into your Bank Account in a Legal way that is why I have contacted you the United States Department of Justice, The Attorney General Gonzales will get some documents for you so that this Transaction can be completed without delay the following documents needed are as follows
1: United Nations Stop Order Document 2: World Bank Clearance Certificate 3: President's Approval Letter 4: Proof of Ownership Certificate.
These four documents are needed before I can proceed with the transfe into your bank account in the meantime; I want you to confirm the following details to me.
Legal First and Last Name: Complete Residential Address & Age Direct Telephone No & Fax Legal Occupation and Position Address of Occupation
Please get back to me as soon as possible so we can be done as soon as possible the President of the United States ( President George W. Bush visited Nashville yesterday so I wasn't able to get his Approval Certificate from his office so try and reach me back via my Personal Email and Note that you can reach me faster via my personal email.
Thanks and God Bless you.
Henry M. Paulson, Jr. Executive Secretary United States Treasury Department Main Treasury 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW Washington, D.C. 20220
You may send U.S. mail to US Treasury Department. 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, D.C. 20220 Office Fax: (202) 622-6415 General Tel#:(202) 622-2000 Personal E-mail: email@example.com
Wow! The Secretary of the Treasury wants to send me money! Wow!
WONTONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION
Fears of chemical attack by Islamic militants led to evacuation of parts of London yesterday.
Police closed off three roads and evacuated Soho homes as a mysterious cloud of acrid smoke hovered over the district for three hours and the Hazardous Area Response Team Unit swept the deserted streets seeking its source.
-- Russell Seitz
Subject: terrorist information
Jerry, in response to your correspondent Mr. Edwards:
The material at the amazon.com URL given below my signature would be invaluable to terrorists, and I have so notified the relevant authorities (through professional contacts at two degrees of separation). This is information that should not be so easily available. From the amazon.com description of the item (I want to make this as difficult as possible for people to locate, if you choose to use the letter): "... revolutionary new book discussing the laboratory preparation of some of the most interesting toxic substances known to man."
Subject: _I Married a Communist_ on TCM Saturday AM.
_I Married a Communist_ on TCM Saturday AM.
--- Roland Dobbins
There is a price to pay at all times, especially for freedom. FIREARMS REFRESHER COURSE
"Those who hammer their guns into plows will plow for those who do not." ~ Thomas Jefferson
FIREARMS REFRESHER COURSE
1. An armed man is a citizen. An unarmed man is a subject.
2. A gun in the hand is better than a cop on the phone.
3. Colt: The original point and click interface.
4. Gun control is not about guns; it's about control.
5. If guns are outlawed, can we use swords?
6. If guns cause crime, then pencils cause misspelled words.
7. Free men do not ask permission to bear arms.
8. If you don't know your rights, you don't have any.
9. Those who trade liberty for security have neither.
10. The United States Constitution (c)1791. All Rights Reserved.
11. What part of "shall not be infringed" do you not understand?
12. The Second Amendment is in place in case the politicians ignore the others.
13. 64,999,987 firearms owners killed no one yesterday.
14. Guns only have two enemies; rust and politicians.
15. Know guns, know peace, know safety. No guns, no peace, no safety.
16. You don't shoot to kill; you shoot to stay alive.
17. 911: Government sponsored Dial-a-Prayer.
18. Assault is a behavior, not a device.
19. Criminals love gun control; it makes their jobs safer.
20. If guns cause crime, then matches cause arson.
21. Only a government that is afraid of its citizens tries to control them.
22. You have only the rights you are willing to fight for.
23. Enforce the gun control laws we ALREADY have; don't make more.
24. When you remove the people's right to bear arms, you create slaves.
25. The American Revolution would never have happened with gun control.
IF YOU AGREE, PASS THIS "REFRESHER" ON TO TEN FREE CITIZENS.
Bill Haynes (Col, USAF, Ret)
October 13, 2007
I'd like to correct some misapprehensions about Cory Doctorow's unauthorized posting of my short comic piece "On Serious Literature" on his boingboing.net site.
I originally sent the piece to David Langford for Ansible, because that's where I first saw the quote from Ruth Franklin that the piece riffs on. I also put it on my web site. (It's still there.) Jon Carroll of the San Francisco Chronicle then reprinted it entire in the Chronicle, without asking permission. My agent Vaughne Hansen and I immediately demanded an apology from Carroll, and immediately got one. Harper's asked to publish it, offering me $200.00, which I accepted (I love gravy.)
I then discovered that Doctorow had put it on his web site, without asking permission and without observing copyright, misrepresenting its purpose, and falsely claiming that it was under license by "Creative Commons" so that anyone could copy it.
My agent and I had just decided to ask the e-piracy committe of SFWA, which I had come to count on in similar situations, to intervene on my behalf -- when we found that the committee had suddenly been dissolved, following complaints about unauthorized interference, issuing from Cory Doctorow.
The irony of this situation is fairly visible. While Doctorow was making a huge fuss over an honest mistake, which when discovered was immediately redressed, he was publishing another writer's work without asking permission and in clear violation of copyright.
With my consent, Andrew Burt exposed Doctorow's piracy in a letter printed on Jerry Pournelle's web site. Doctorow scoffed, blustered, made no apology to me for misidentifying my work and using it without permission, and behaved as if his action was legitimate, although the Fair Use exception explicitly does not cover reprinting an entire article or poem no matter how short. But he took part of the piece off his site.
At the request of Michael Capobianco, President of SFWA, acting on my behalf, Doctorow has now finally removed the entire piece.
He has not apologised either to me for using my piece without permission, or to the people he misled with his pretense of a "Creative Commons License" into thinking they could reprint a copyrighted piece without violating the law. Nor has he offered to help them remove these many additional copies.
But, thanks to SFWA, he has taken the piece down. My agent is writing to request him to redress some of the other matters. I hope then to be done for good with Mr. Doctorow. What I remain upset about is the confusion and destruction he seems to have effected within SFWA.
An overworked committee mistakenly identified a few works, among many, as infringing copyright; the mistakes were promptly admitted and redressed, with apologies; and President Capobianco invited any other parties who thought themselves wronged to contact him. Where is the cause in all this for dissolving a committee which has worked with extraordinary effectiveness to redress real wrongs?
In my view, the best thing that could come out of my brush with the Doctorow Doctrine would be this: the honorable reinstatement of the SFWA e-piracy committee, with an expression of appreciation from SFWA officers and members of the honest and effective work they have done for us for so long.
This letter is not copyrighted and may be excerpted or copied entire.
-- Ursula K. Le Guin October 12 2007
|This week:||Sunday, October
The Indian Affairs Committee has just approved a two-word change to federal law that could render the scientific study of pre-Columbian history in the United States virtually impossible.http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=ZWExMTkxODY3ZmJhNDlkZjI4NDQ0YmRjMTYwNTc3NWI\
Cory Doctorow "Apologizes" (see above)
Only it looks to me more like an excuse than an apology. But it's about all Ursula will get. Note that when SFWA makes an error, it is considered both deliberate and unforgiveable.
Welcome to Web 2.0. You ain't seen nothing yet.
Even the French socialists know:
In France, a sour note was sounded by a leading French climate sceptic, former Socialist education minister and award-winning geochemist Claude Allegre.
He brushed off Friday's announcement as "a political gimmick", saying: "The amount of nonsense in Al Gore's film! It's all politics, it's designed to intervene in American politics. It's scandalous. There's a presidential election upcoming in the United States, and it's well known that Gore wants to run." <snip>
MODERN ART: THE FIRST 11,000 YEARS
French archaeologists have uncovered a fresco on a neolithic house wall that antedates agriculture by several thousand years .
Its startling resemblance to masterpieces of contemporary art may equally disconcert post-modernists and conservatives, but those who suspect aesthetic sensibility, like the faculty of language, is hardwired into the human brain can only smile
RUSSELL SEITZ <http://adamant.typepad.com/seitz/2007/10/11000-years-of-.html>
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IF YOU SEND MAIL it may be published; if you want it private SAY SO AT THE TOP of the mail. I try to respect confidences, but there is only me, and this is Chaos Manor. If you want a mail address other than the one from which you sent the mail to appear, PUT THAT AT THE END OF THE LETTER as a signature. In general, put the name you want at the end of the letter: if you put no address there none will be posted, but I do want some kind of name, or explicitly to say (name withheld).
Note that if you don't put a name in the bottom of the letter I have to get one from the header. This takes time I don't have, and may end up with a name and address you didn't want on the letter. Do us both a favor: sign your letters to me with the name and address (or no address) as you want them posted. Also, repeat the subject as the first line of the mail. That also saves me time.
I try to answer mail, but mostly I can't get to all of it. I read it all, although not always the instant it comes in. I do have books to write too... I am reminded of H. P. Lovecraft who slowly starved to death while answering fan mail.
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