Calling Coyotes by Cross-Country Communication in all Counties

Monday, February 23, 2004

Let Freedom Ring

This is a great idea:

The classics of American thought and literature have been little translated into Arabic. Worse, even when they have been translated, they have appeared in small editions (typically no more than 500 copies printed). Worse still, the distribution system for Arabic books is poor, and there are few public libraries, so that many books that have been published in the past are no longer available to most readers.

I have therefore decided to begin a project to translate important books by great Americans and about America into Arabic, and to subsidize their publication so that they can be bought inexpensively. I hope also to subsidize their distribution.

Soon-to-be-unemployed AG seeking LE support

Lockyer, a Democrat, has not only refused thus far to act against Newsom, but he's also used the opportunity to publicly dis the governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, who demanded last Friday that he "take immediate steps to obtain a definitive judicial resolution of this controversy."

Lockyer's response? "The governor can direct the Highway Patrol. He can direct the next Terminator 4 movie if he chooses. But he can't direct the attorney general in the way he's attempted to do," he told the San Francisco Chronicle. Already his conservative critics are threatening to take action against Lockyer for "not doing his job."

I think that California elects attorney-generals (in my opinion, a stupid thing. Electing state supreme court justices is a bad thing.) but as part of the state government Lockyer has an obligation, unwritten or otherwise, to serve the interests of the governor, or failing that, the state, which has passed a defense of marriage act. In another Slate article, Professor Richard Thompson Ford makes the case that the scraps of paper declaring gay couples married are just, well, scraps of paper declaring gay couples married. The city dispenses, the state sanctions. Lockyer should stop being insubordinate and tell San Francisco that the state will not recognize any gay marriages, and a feint and trojan horse if he feels inclined, refuse to recognize any San Fran marriages if the mayor persists (See paragraph eleven of the Ford article.)

If Lockyer continues as is it is 99% likely he will lose his position one way or another, and I'm one social liberal who won't give a damn. If you want to advocate and legalize gay marriage, run for legislature, or better yet, resign and start preparing to campaign against Schwarzenegger in 2006. Just don't take up space not doing your job.

If anyone was confused, LE stands for Liberal Establishment. And yes, I am for legalizing same-sex marriage, as most of the best arguments against it rely on godless biological philosophy or anti-homosexualism. However, the right way to do so is through the legislature, as marriage is recognized in a legal sense by the state, therefore it is a created privilege, not a right, and all have access to the same privilege from it, marriage to someone of the opposite sex, so it narrowly stands as not discriminatory by the 14th on the same grounds that homosexual sodomy bans are constitutional. However, the sodomy laws are government restrictions where the government lacks the power to restrict. On marriage it can do whatever the heck it wants as far as the Constitution is concerned. Same-sex mariage will only really be accepted when a majority of citizens want it to be legalized, and I think that efforts to legalize same-sex marriage would be better spent raising the public awareness and talking to legislators than using the courts and taking empty symbolic actions.

This has to be the longest footnote I have ever written.

If no one intervenes, at least 20,000 people will be killed by the Haiti uprisings or in response to it.

The Passion is denounced further by Jewish organization, and also by the left, who will continue to ignore the vast anti-semitism in Arab media.

The International Court of Justice rules that the Fence interferes with the Palestinians' "right of resistance" and therefore is banned by international law.

Kerry wins only half the delegates on March 2nd, and the primary appears to have a good chance of continuing to the convention.

Bush's approval poll numbers rise slightly while the approval rating of the Democratic candidate sink like a stone in a lake after a forceful and convincing acceptance speech at the Republican convention.

The PA collapses by November. Iraq sucessfully holds elections this year, and begin democratic government, despite constitutional isssues that continue for several years. The insurgency is crushed by the joint efforts of the Coalition and Iraqi forces several months after the government is elected.

Meryl Yourish' and Amish Tech Support's traffic increases by the end of the year.

That is all.

Thursday, February 12, 2004

"In the Nasa!..."

OPPORTUNITY UPDATE: Extended Tour - sol 18, Feb 12, 2004

Opportunity had a couple of little hiccups on sol 18, February 11, which ends at 7:01 p.m. Wednesday, PST. The wrist on the real rover arm would not point as far vertically as the engineering rover's wrist did on Earth during a model test the night before. Because of this, the arm on Mars did not stow, and the rover did not move on to waypoint Charlie. The rover also automatically stopped use of the mast due to the fact that it believed a requested pointing position was in an area beyond its limits. Engineers solved both problems on sol 18. All systems are go for Opportunity to complete the tour of the outcrop by heading to outpost Charlie on sol 19, Thursday, February 12.

"Roger that Command, we are go for tour to outpost Charlie at time Sol 1
9. Let's move!"


Wednesday, February 11, 2004

Yourish: "I think the Democrats are in trouble"

I have almost exactly the same opinion about the November election. (However, no phone calls from Edwards.)

Lieberman was the only Democratic candidate I trusted to do what had to be done in foreign policy, and he went nowhere. The Democratic Party seems to fail to realize that while national debt can be repaid, laws can be repealed, and Supreme Court judges can retire, if we don't make tough stands on our foreign policy in a world where nuclear weapons are one coup or one sale away from ending up in the hands of terrorists, where major regions are entrenched in dictatorial rule in which violence against outsiders is encouraged, and where wars against a nation are fought by terrorist proxies until the opportunity arises to throw away every deception and eradicate the enemy, September 11th could become merely the first massacre in an increasingly assymetrical war against an enemy that does not value the lives of its own people and sees murder as a righteous act.

The stakes are this high, and what has happened in Israel from 1978 to the present is not a unique situation but a snapshot of what will happen on a larger scale. The single biggest issue facing the nation and the world today is the conjunction of terrorism and Arab/Islamic anti-Westism, and if the Democratic candidate does not recognize this, he is not fit to be the Commander-in-Chief of America.

I'd like to announce that I am a state delegate for Edwards to the Maine State Democratic Convention.

Friday, February 06, 2004

"Ladies and gentlemen, I present you the greatest interplanetary brushing of all time!"

The Spirit is back in business!

More images from the Spirit here. See Opportunity images here. A 360-degree Opportunity panorama is here. Lots of close photos of the martian bedrock are also available.

Wednesday, February 04, 2004

Lieberman Leaves the Democratic Primary

This is really too bad, as Lieberman is one of the most vocal and consistent hawks in the Democratic Party at a time when the world needs hawks. The Perhaps Liebermandoes not have a clear vision to his hawkishness, but none of the remaining candidates are even admitting that US military force can improve the world if it is used justly.

I think that Lieberman's campaign was badly run at the end, but after Iowa it was really running on fumes, and I think the Kerry resurgence caused Lieberman to lose voters that would have likely voted for him if forced to choose between Clark, Dean, and Lieberman. Once the poll numbers in New Hampshire started to go down from their peak at third-place shortly before Iowa, it was clear that there was no cance that Lieberman could slowly rise too the top to win New Hampshire, where Lieberman, counted on a strong showing. After getting less than 10% in New Hampshire, the plan for South Carolina, which was likely to ride momentum from New Hampshire to dominate the more conservative south, completely fell apart. Lieberman basically retreated to his strongest state, Delaware, and made a last-ditch effort to pull off a single win while neglecting the rest of the states. One thing Lieberman did do well during the campaign was get endorsements by newspapers. The biggest New Hampshire newspapers all endorsed him, and he was getting endorsements from major newspapers even as it was becoming increasingly clear he was not going to win. I think this shows that while he was able to get large support from moderate political commentariat, that opinion is solidly out of step with the Democratic Party today. And no, Lieberman's failure is not explainable solely by poor campaigning, as Kerry's campaign has been far worse and consists mainly of getting lots of other people to help prop up Kerry's image. Most telling is that no other candidate has emerged with a similar message to Joe, despite that Edwards' basic platform in large part resembles Kerry's, and Clark's imitation of the Dean campaign's spirit is noteworthy. Lieberman has not at any point had such a doppelganger. Try to think of any other notable hawkish Democrats. See my point?

Here's Lieberman's statement to his supporters on his withdrawal. Also, get the Joe campaign theme song, "Go Joe," while it's still available. Trust me, you won't regret it.:)

Also, there is Mohammed Saeed al-Sahaf for Joe. Just go read it. And finally, a Slate article with so many plays on "Joementum" that it hurts to read it this soon after Lieberman dropped out. Maybe later.

Okay, maybe just the end.
Somewhere conservative Democrats are laughing, and somewhere McCain independents shout. But there is no Joe in Mudville. Joe Lieberman has struck out.