View 841 Friday, September 05, 2014
“Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency.”
President Barack Obama, January 31, 2009
This is a day book. That means that I start out not knowing what will happen or where I am going. Today’s experiences certainly came out that way.
Another day eaten in large part by locusts, and I got little done. I am also convinced that Microsoft hates me.
I had to drive Roberta out to Kaiser this morning. I took Precious, the Surprise Pro 3, for a test. While out there waiting I tried it out as a laptop, both with OneNote and Word 365, using both the Stylus/Pen and the keyboard. I’ll have all that in the column I am preparing which I will have up soon now (not, I hope, Real Soon Now; but things do tend to eat my time in unexpected ways). One thing I did learn: if you intend to use a Surface Pro 3 as a laptop – and it is entirely possible that you can – you will need to get a number of usage problems solved when you are home; learning them on the job isn’t feasible.
Also, if you are just beginning Word 365, and you are not familiar with Windows 8 (sometimes known as Microsoft’s New Coke) do not try to learn the two together on a Surface Pro 3. There are too many unfamiliar things to learn all at once, and you can’t be sure whether your trouble is Windows 8, Word 365, or the Surface.
Having learned that I decided that the first move would be to get familiar with the Word 365/Windows 8 combination; and if that was too difficult, install Office 365 on a Windows 7 machine. That seems logical – but then I discovered that although I bought and paid for Office 365 Business Plan, which allows me to install Office 365 on several machines, I did that with the Surface 3 Pro – and I have not the foggiest notion of how to install it on anything else. I tried logging in to Microsoft Office 365, but I have no notion of what the user name and password are. I bought the subscription, so I must have used something, but if I logged any of that I sure can’t find it, and my memory of the event is that there was nothing to log. I send in the credit card number and downloaded the software. Fortunately it was American Express, which means that I have a way to make Microsoft listen to me if I can’t figure this out, but I’d rather not have to fire that cannon.
If any of you KNOW what I should do – a Microsoft web site I can ask for help, or something – please send me mail. I bought Office 365, and paid for it; downloaded it to the Surface 3 Pro, and have successfully used full OneNote and Word on the Surface Pro,. Searching my Inbox for messages to me from Microsoft disclosed that on August 26 I paid for it, and there’s a link that actually seems to log me in automatically to my Office 365 account; it give no User Name and asks for no password, but it is aware that I downloaded Office 365 to Precious, the Surface Pro 3, and Swan, a Windows 8 Desktop. That tells me more than I knew before, because I didn’t remember that I had already downloaded it to Swan. Clearly I have been told how to download this to another machine, and I suspect I only need that link to do it for yet another system. I can hope. But it all seems a rather odd way of doing business.
I’ll have more to say about all this when I learn more. I am also eager to try this terabyte of cloud storage I get, supposedly common to all the machines I have this Office 365 on. Much to learn. But since it’s now on Swan – what I was trying to accomplish before I began this – I’m ready to learn some more. So I started this asking for help, but apparently I am able to help myself. It’s still the enough for the column, because I don’t do those until I have a happy ending, but I am getting closer…
The Ebola news continues to be alarming. There may or may not be some advances in treatment, learned from the use of survivors. This is well summed up in a Forbes on line article :
WHO Ebola Drug Panel: Use Survivor Serum To Treat Ebola Victims
The World Health Organization has just concluded a two-day consultation in Geneva among 200 health officials, regulators, ethicists, scientists and drug company representatives.
The goal was to produce a consensus statement on assessing the safety and efficacy of experimental Ebola preventives and treatments.
The most immediate action will be taken with convalescent patient serum for treatment and already-planned safety trials for two preventive vaccines. Three primary recommendations were made.
There are other recommendations, and it doesn’t take long to read. What everyone is being careful not to mention is the very real possibility that the Ebola virus may mutate producing a strain that can propagate itself through a vector, or directly through airborne cough particles. As I understand it, an odd mutation of influenza produced the Spanish Flu epidemic back in World War I times. I have no idea of what the probabilities are, but in these days of frequent air travel, I am sure many health safety officers are concerned that there will come a strain of Ebola that can infect before the symptoms are fully displayed. There are other unpleasant options. I hope the authorities are thinking about these matters.
My Tuesday newspaper tells me that President Obama is “enraged” at Israel:
Obama’s Curious Rage
Calm when it comes to Putin, ISIS and Hamas, but furious with Israel.
Sept. 1, 2014 6:32 p.m. ET
Barack Obama "has become ‘enraged’ at the Israeli government, both for its actions and for its treatment of his chief diplomat, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. " So reports the Jerusalem Post, based on the testimony of Martin Indyk, until recently a special Middle East envoy for the president. The war in Gaza, Mr. Indyk adds, has had "a very negative impact" on Jerusalem’s relations with Washington.
Think about this. Enraged. Not "alarmed" or "concerned" or "irritated" or even "angered." Anger is a feeling. Rage is a frenzy. Anger passes. Rage feeds on itself. Anger is specific. Rage is obsessional, neurotic.
I am probably the wrong one to comment on Israel and Gaza. Back when some influential people listened to me I took part in some policy discussions on what Israel might do, with particular attention to the actions of the settlers, and I was in favor of Israel drawing definite boundaries, removing the settlers from beyond the boundaries, and essentially unilaterally declaring a two-state solution. It’s more complicated than that, but the consensus was that if Israel got out of the occupied territories, sanity might return, particularly if there were good economic incentives. My advice was based in large part on familiarity with the plight of Christians in the occupied territories.
In any event, Israel decided to give something like that a trial, and at considerable cost brought the Israeli settlers out of Gaza and withdrew all Israeli troops from there. There followed some investments into Gaza. The hope was that Gaza might become something like Hong Kong. After all, at one time Beirut was known as the Paris of the Orient.
Clearly that didn’t work. Hamas took over and while there was considerable investment and construction, much of the investment went to rockets and much of the construction to tunnels for bringing in and concealing rockets; after which thousands of the rockets were fired in the general direction of Tel Aviv and other densely populated civilian areas of Israel. The Israelis have mostly been polite enough to avoid telling us they told us so.
Thus I am more likely to be enraged at those who used the opportunity to build rockets rather than infrastructure. I am not sure why one would become enraged at the Israelis for taking measures to prevent the rockets and destroy the tunnels. Of course that will involve asymmetrical casualties; what would one expect?
But I confess I am baffled that the President of the United States would be enraged at Israel. Perhaps this is misreporting, and I missed the refutation form the White House?
These were sent to me some time ago, and I marked them for posting with a comment. I’m out of time for a comment but they are still worth your attention:
Pop culture metaphors applied to U. S. vs. Russia
The first that comes to mind is Blazing Saddles, Gene Wilder to Cleavon Little, on the subject of Mongo "Don’t shoot him, that’ll just make him mad.".
The second is the 09/05/2014 episode of Girl Genius www.girlgeniusonline.com/comic.php on dealing with attacking bears.
Obama in this case might be well advised to consider the candygram.
Never do your enemy a small injury, advises Machiavelli and just about anyone else who thought about it for a while…
I have enjoyed Larry & your books since high school, in regards to Australian temperature data sets our BOM (Bureau Of Meteorology) has reset all data obtained over 200 years.
It is a true scandal we actually have remote region records kept by families for 150 years (as official recorders) that is now not valid. I live in South Australia & from day one (1836) of settlement an official recorded meteorological data apparently most of this data is wrong. All data not compliant with global warming has been discarded, the reason is it doesn’t meet current standards.
If you use the recorded data hottest days in the 1930’s followed by 1890’s but due to adjustments every hot day since 1990 is a record (still lower than previous) The memory of those people that diligently recorded all things meteorological is being discarded, the disrespect of these persons is an insult to their legacy.
There are many regions where adjustment by BOM has turned cooling into warming, but worse than that they make media releases saying hottest day on record but don’t say record reset.
This is the easiest website to link to http://joannenova.com.au/2014/09/bom-homogenisation-in-deniliquin-creates-discontinuities-and-changes-trends/
Our our national newspaper The Australian has many examples, I am a practical person a humble tradesman but can see that I am being played here.
Freedom is not free. Free men are not equal. Equal men are not free.