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Archive for October 5th, 2009

Neckdate:  I saw the pain doc again today.  There’s been (very good) improvement in my range of motion but I’ve got pain still.  I pointed out to them where it is hurting and they said “Oh, that is down low (C5-7) – we did not get that yet.  So… it means two more diagnostic procedures and then another RF procedure.   Damn.  If, after all that, and I still have pain, then they are completely willing to try a non-narcotic treatment of pain.  Damn.  So I have to wait a while longer to get my clarity of mind back.  Damn.

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George Will did a nice commentary on the Obamas and their performance for the Olympic farce vote.  Very nice observations, and he didn’t have to reach far to make a compelling statement.

Both Obamas gave heartfelt speeches about … themselves. Although the working of the committee’s mind is murky, it could reasonably have rejected Chicago’s bid for the 2016 games on aesthetic grounds — unless narcissism has suddenly become an Olympic sport.

In the 41 sentences of her remarks, Michelle Obama used some form of the personal pronouns “I” or “me” 44 times. Her husband was, comparatively, a shrinking violet, using those pronouns only 26 times in 48 sentences. Still, 70 times in 89 sentences was sufficient to convey the message that somehow their fascinating selves were what made, or should have made, Chicago’s case compelling.

<snip> Surely [Silicon] Valley could continue its service to him by designing software for his speechwriters’ computers that would delete those personal pronouns, replacing them with the word “sauerkraut” to underscore the antic nature of their excessive appearances.

<snip>

… we pass from the merely silly to the ominous — suppose the president was being not gallant but sincere.  Perhaps the premise of the otherwise inexplicable trip to Denmark was that there is no difficulty, foreign or domestic, that cannot be melted by the sunshine of the Obama persona.

Bingo.

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You and I… we all need a break from seriousness.

Try this.

mapping

mapping with XKCD

Just think if someone really did know everywhere you went.  Which leads us into the main topic, which is surveillance…

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Bloomberg is busy justifying surveillance nets now.

A network of private and public surveillance cameras, license plate readers and weapons sensors already established in Lower Manhattan as an electronic bulwark against terrorist attacks will soon expand to a large patch of Midtown Manhattan…

<snip>

Behind the mayor, a 40-foot video wall displayed maps, incoming data from a police precinct and more than a dozen video streams, many of them showing tourists taking photographs on a sunny day.

<snip>

We can’t just say everybody can go everyplace and do anything they want.

He speaks of balance right after the last sentence there.

Problem with stuff like this is really easy to justify it but hellishly difficult to remove it once in place.  How many taxes have you seen go away recently?  How many government programs have been eliminated recently?  Diddly + jack + squat, that’s how many.

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The United Steaks of America.  Yes.  Really.

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Tsunamis are deadly but cool.

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