Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Web Host

To update this, everything is now working (4/23/09). The problems were mostly theirs and a little mine. The Website was a DNS problem between my computer and their DNS's. The other two, e-mail and ftp, were fixed yesterday evening. I'm still puzzled they don't ask what kind of computer you have before sending you instructions. All the instructions were for PC's and not Mac's, and I had to translate the same tools and settings.

My Website host is Rainier Connect, a small area communications company who bought out my old host Harbornet, which had an office just a few miles away. Well, every since the transfer of computers, files and accounts last fall, there have been more problems than the previous years with Harbornet. And now three times in the last two week I haven't been able to access my Website or ftp server and the mail servers are iffy at best.

And during those three outages, I get some good people but always, "Well, we're ok, so please check the preferences and settings on your PC, and maybe consider rebooting it. Well, each time I have to say, "But I have a Mac G5 and it was working fine and then quit working." I want to yell, "What don't you understand it's not me?!"

Why do they do that, simply assume we're the problem? We're writing the checks for their service and it's bordering on sucking badly right now. Yeah, it's just a rant or vent for the moment and not really serious. Except I'm trying to work on professional stuff when I can't and paying a Website host good money for something I'm not getting.

Oh well, life can be a bitch at times, and there's nothing you can do except something else.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Somethings never change

Like? President Obama is proposing more spending for the fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan he voted against as a Senator. President Obama is appealing the ruling allowing detainees access to the federal courts, something he said he would never do and would follow the Geneva Convention on the treatment of detainees, even those not captured in Iraq or Afghanistan. President Obama is making documents secret over the actions to investigate suspected terrorists when he denounced those actions by President Bush.

It seems President Obama is learning the realities of being President, and the realities of lying to the American people by promising to do and be better and then reniging on that promise. I'm not against changing views in the face of reality. I am against changing it out of political expedience and convenience as he's doing now. While I admire what he's doing in many areas, especially changing the direction of government from that of former President Bush, I don't admire him for not changing some things that needed then and still needs to be changed.

And that's exactly what he not doing, changing. He's proving something never change, like Presidents lying and President not doing what they promised. And President deciding to play politics with Americans than tell us the truth or do what we asked you do when we elected you. Keep going and you'll lose my respect too.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Other news

I wrote about my view on the news of the day, mainly our failures in the Iraq and Afghanistan to bring a government of the people, for the people and by the people (catchy phrase, huh?) and the Seattle Mariners. So I'll write about the other issues I read yesterday in the newspapers. And that is?

Secretary Gates' statement about strategic change in the Defense Department (DOD) procurements for weapons systems. It sounded so good but analysist specializing in military affairs said quite the contrary, it's business as usual. They said everything Gates said was the same under President Bush, everything had been planned and only now being implemented under President Obama.

So, in the end, it's still all about appearances. The appearance of change. An illusion. Tell Congress and the American people what they want to hear and the do what you had planned anyway. Nothing's changed, just spun differently.

Computerizing medical records. Sorry, I'm against it. Not totally, but to the extent President Obama and supporters want. I don't want my entire medical history on a computer shared with other healthcare providers, health insurance companies, pharmasuitical companies, government agencies, employers and worse hackers. And anyone who can and will sell it to anyone wanting to buy it.

That's the worse case scenarios except the credit companies and government agencies have shown a terrible record of information security. If you think identity theft is bad, consider medical informatioin can be a nightmare. As far as I'm concerned, if you want my history, ask me and I'll tell my doctor to contact you. Otherwise, the answer is no.

Ok, I'm a curmudgeon, but I don't like that young people today will never really know privacy, their own about themselves. They're forever in the information sharing age where nothing is hidden or secret, except the government's. They'll know everything about you as will the companies, the credit companies, and anyone willing to buy it.

Social Security. They're at it again, in the name of the recession. Folks, LEAVE IT ALONE. Understand? It's safe and at worst needs tweaking but not overhauling in the name of whatever you're selling to the American people.

Enough said as has already been said. So take it off the table, out of the discussion and let it be what it does. If you want to help it, legalize immigrants to start paying into it.

Gender neutral marriage. As much as you want to make the arguments for or against this issue of marriage, this is really what it's about. All other things being the same, just make legal marriage gender neutral. And leave it to the individuals to define their marriage with their faith or religion.

I would only add to this that while religions and the priests, paster, father, etc. who are legally recognized to perform the ceremony, they can exercise their right to say yes or no, but no civil-recognized person, meaning in government at some level, can refuse, despite their personal objections.

It's the same logic that applies to pharmacists who can refuse to fill prescriptions against their believes, except government officials who are recognized by their position or legal status should not refuse to perform a marriage ceremony between two people who are allowed under the law. Or else face dismissal of their job, title or status.

That's not hard to understand. There's a simple solution here to equal rights to a legal marriage. Religious marriage belongs to the religion but that should change the legal right. It's about being equal and having equal rights under the law.

Well, that's it for this week, for a Tuesday anyway. I still have two more days of newspapers left to read, so I'll keep you posted.

Nothing's Changed

I'm a Seattle Mariner fan. But this season, with all the hoopla about a new manager and new players, nothing has changed. They won the season opener against the Minnesota Twins in good fashion, even Ken Griffey Jr. contributed. I wasn't for his return but I'm open if he adds to the team throughout the season, something he had a problem with at Cincinnati.

But then Tuesday's game was normal Mariners. After working hard to get a 5-3 lead in the ninth inning, they brough in the new closer, young Brandon Morrow, who throws in the mid-to-upper 90's. And he quickly dispatched the first two hitters and got two strikes on the last hitter.

So one out away, and he walks that batter and the next two to load the bases. Then they replace him with Miguel Batista who then gave up two singles, Minnesota won 6-5.

Ok, there are 160 more games to go. But I'll bet it a sign of things to come. Another normal losing season like the last four. Eric Bedard pitched a great game and got robbed of two runs after a bad call by the umpire. And then Mr. Morrow imploded on the mound. He couldn't throw a strike against five straight left hand hitters with a two run lead.

And so the season will unwind and I'll still be there listening on the radio or watching on TV, but I'm not expecting any wins this years. I'll take them as surprises and loses as business as usual. Again. But there's always hope. They did it in 1995, 2000 and 2001, getting the American LCS, but losing all three times.

Such is life of a Mariner fan. Another 160 games of frustration and denial.

Iraq and Afghanistan

Ok, after running errands Tuesday and getting the newspapers, I sat down with lunch and read. And several items in the news crossed my mind to sit down later, here, and write about them. And remember it's just my opinion and perspective on the news. And that is?

Well, for one, President Obama isn't any different than any past President, even the Ole' George W. himself, the worst in recent history (Nixon is debateable because he did have some accomplishment to offset his flaws and failings). And that is he would rather have a stable government in a foreign country, especially one who's an ally or we're occupying, than a democratic or even a decent one.

The examples are Iraq and Afghanistan. Both governments are corrupt, non-democratic (although Iraq's was done under the guise of elections), and highly discriminating. Iraq against minorities of any type, kind or description. They're imposing Islamic law and we're just letting it happen.

And worse Afghanistan is more corrupt, less effective or productive, and discriminates against women, really big time. And Obama just stands there and says we want stability. Apparently at any human price. The government suppresses and even oppresses women and their rights under Islamic law. So what did exactly we change there?

Freedom, democracy, rule of law? What?

So President Obama back slides to say we're not there to install a government but to fight Al Qaeda and the Taliban, except they're part of the government from the local war lords to the national one under President Hamid Karzai. He keeps our money, doles it to friends and allies, and then does what he wants. He promises democracy but then approves Islamic law against women.

That's right, the war lords and the Taliban, the very people we attacked after 9/11 for their support of Al Qaeda, are part of Karzai's government. The very people we hated for their support of the acts by Al Qaeda against the people of many nations in the World Trade Center. The very people we condemned their imposition of Islamic law and for their human rights abuses, especially against women.

And we stand there side-by-side with President Karzai like it never happened, and then hand him more money to do more of the same.

And there already is enough written about the support we've given the government and especially the military Pakistan while neglecting the economy and people. All because they help us fight Al Qaeda and the Taliban in the northwest terrorities. It doesn't matter how corrupt they are too and their connections to both those groups for their own political purposes.

We just want stability. Well, the former Soviet Union had that along with the Eastern Bloc nations they controlled through military oppression. And our history isn't much better. Chile had that under General Pinochet with our support to overthrow the elected leader. And so on through the list of "stable" nations we've installed and supported, dismissing or overlooking their discrimination and human rights abuses to their own people.

So much for selling America abroad. Our tax dollars wasted on corruption, fraud, abuse and fear, all in the name of American diplomacy and international relations. You can put all the shine and spin on it you want, the truth and reality is still there. All you have to do is look and read the news.

We don't want a free and independent nation there, we want an ally and we don't care how they govern to do that. As long as they'll pretend to be our friend we'll write the checks. For the arms, intelligence, technology, whatever, to discriminate, suppress, oppress and abuse their own people.

That's America as seen from abroad. We just don't like to see and know we don't wear the white hat, but the darkest black one.