Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Necessities of Life

possum_living.jpgI woke up last night and my back was bothering me so much I couldn't get back to sleep, so I got up and stretched and read. I read about making moonshine.
Let's discuss the health aspects of drinking. Ethyl may be healthy, indifferent, or unhealthy for you, depending on many circumstances. I'm not qualified to tell you if you should drink or not and I'm not going to do so. If you do decide to drink, however, I can assure you that it makes no difference whatsoever whether that ethyl was produced in a commercial operation or in your kitchen. If it's ethyl, it's ethyl.
Not only is the home brew every bit as good, if not better, than the government stuff, it's considerably cheaper.
White sugar is by far the easiest to use, besides being relatively inexpensive and pure. At $1.29 per 5-pound bag, the current price in our area, the sugar needed to make a fifth of 100-proof liquor costs 43¢.
Possum Living by Dolly Freed, 1978, and now back in print.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Fourth Blogiversary

appy_burfday_to_me.jpgIt was a good year. I celebrated the Double Nickel, significant Milestones for all three kids, and Twenty-Two Years of wonderful marriage. Along the way we visited The Sylvanite Mine, watched the Cranberry Festival Parade, got Our Christmas Trees, and marked Ground Hog Day.

zeta_munitions_first_product.jpgMy new hobby arrived in The Big Brown TruckSome Assembly Required. I felt like an eight-year-old Atomic Scientist as I Spent The Weekend In My Bunker making ammunition. It all paid off in early November when I got My First Buck and made him into Grandma Hammersley's Old-Time Mincemeat.

staff_sergeant_stanley_langeberg.jpgMy other hobby came as a packet of Letters From the Southwest Pacific. I read Eric M. Bergerud's Touched with Fire, Signaller Johnston's New Guinea diaries, and a dozen other books. Here's the Bibliography. My wife and I transcribed the letters and I wrote a brief historical background: From Oregon to Australia, and New Guinea, and we printed it up for all the family to read. Next year maybe I can put it online.

palin_at_woodland_mall.jpgThere was no avoiding politics, death, and taxes. Tax Day in Oregon meant tea parties in Medford, Klamath Falls, and Grants Pass. I attended them all, slapped a Palin For Prez sticker on my car, and told The Doctor that I'm Not Buying It unless it's Simple and Cheap. In the end it was neither. Tax season delivered another Swift Kick and I resolved that a law repugnant to the Constitution is void and I Will Not Obey.

keel_da_google.gifIn my spare time I penned A Brief Treatise on Race, a succinct essay on Currency and Money, and capable enough software to let me keel da Google: BlogWare Exposed!

The Woof Is Back and he ain't never goin' away. Not as long as there's 45 Million Year Old Beer.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Norman Podhoretz Say What?

Right there on the opinion page of The Wall Street Journal.
Listen to the great satirist who blogs under the name of Iowahawk...
I'd post the punchline, but I think you'd better read if yourself.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Dozens Rally In Godforsaken Desert

dozens_in_searchlight.jpgHeh. The blogosphere is having fun with CNN's pathetic attempt to play down Saturday's gathering in Searchlight, Nevada.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal had a more accurate account.
Speech pages rustling in a brisk breeze, Sarah Palin gazed Saturday across a sea of conservatives, perhaps 10,000 strong and holding signs calling for more freedom and less federal government, and issued a call to action for those who want to kick the Democrats out in 2010.

"We're not going to sit down and shut up," Palin, the ex-GOP vice presidential candidate, shouted from the stage at a mid-day rally in the rock-scarred desert just outside Nevada Democrat Sen. Harry Reid's hometown of Searchlight. "We're taking our country back and we're starting right here in Nevada."
She hopes to see you all in Boston (something about a tea party?) on April 14th.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Living Well on the Oregon Coast

living_well_oregon_coast_march_27.jpgWe lived very well today and I enjoyed that best, sweet revenge. With temperatures in the mid-sixties and winds light, the sunshine was glorious on Bastendorff Beach. We stopped at the Coquille Broiler for hamburgers on the way home: Delicious, as always.

Friday, March 26, 2010

A House Divided Against Itself

Two separate columnists today noted the parallel between the healthcare bill and the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854.

John R. Guardiano in The American Spectator, and Tony Blankley in National Review Online.

Both mention the half-slave-half-free idea. I'm one of the slaves.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Resistance Is Not Futile

Phil Gramm in The Wall Street Journal.
There is one more overwhelming reason freedom is so critical in health care. In the end, even the greatest health-care system in the world fails. At 92, my mother decided to stop going to the hospital, stop going to the doctor, stop taking her medicine, and to die in her own bed. It was a free choice, and she made it. For her family, it was a painful choice, but she died as she lived—proud and free. Government bureaucrats did not make that decision; she did. And that made all the difference.
Joined in a symposium by Mitch Daniels, Mike Pence, Timothy P. Cahill, and Bobby Jindal. All free.

Friday, March 26, 2010

WWII Era Helldiver Found

The wreckage of a Curtiss SB2C Helldiver has just been discovered near Rockaway Beach, Oregon.

Thanks to David Handy - Blogger.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Ups and Downs

With age comes wisdom or at least a bit of perspective.

Amidst all the wailing and gnashing of teeth over the recent success of progressive forces in the socialization of the medical profession, the historian in me wonders how it might compare to other cycles of exhilaration and depression we have lived through in just the last twenty-five years.

Do you remember Morning In America (Nov. ’84), the Iran-Contra Apology (Nov. ’86), Oliver North's Testimony (July ’87), the Fall of the Berlin Wall (Nov. ’89), Desert Storm and the Highway of Death (Feb. ’91)? How about Clinton's Election (Nov. ’92), the Republican Revolution (Nov. 94), Bob Dole's miserable campaign (Nov. ’96), the Impeachment (Dec. ’898), and Bush v. Gore (Nov ’00)? Or the WTC Attack (Sept. ’01), the Battle of Baghdad (Apr. ’03), Bush's Re-election (Nov. ’04), the Iraqi Quagmire and the Surge (’06-’08), the Palin Palooza (Sept ’08), and the Obamanation (Nov. ’08)?

How far back do you remember? How far back do you still feel it? How does this compare? Is this really the end of the world?

Not yet. Not by a long shot.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Gandhi Style

As for my instinctive response to Obamacare, that of civil disobedience, Shikha Dalmia concurs:
Any strategy of nonviolent civil resistance has to first make a good faith effort to achieve its end through the available political and legal means. But there comes a time when changing the law requires acts of conscience.

For opponents of ObamaCare that time is Dec. 31, 2013. That's when the individual mandate will go into effect. If ObamaCare hasn't been repealed by Congress or nullified in court by then, its opponents would be justified in urging Americans to refuse to buy coverage or pay fines and dare authorities to come after them.
By way of Instapundit.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Q&A the Census Burro

Relying once again on super-secret memos posted on the burro's own web site, we take up the question of when.
Note: Some answers have been edited for brevity and clarity.
When will the questionnaires be delivered?
Between March 15 and March 17, 2010.

When will the reminder postcards be delivered?
Between March 22 and March 24, 2010.

When will the replacement questionnaires be delivered?
Between April 1 and April 3.

Why does the Burro send out so many mailings?
We find that it is cost effective overall.

What is the due date for returning the questionnaire?
IF ASKED BEFORE April 1, 2010: The Census Burro does not establish a due date for returning the questionnaire, but we ask that you mail back the questionnaire as soon as possible.
IF ASKED AFTER April 1, 2010: Please complete your questionnaire now and return it to us. If we do not receive your questionnaire soon, a census worker may visit your house and complete one with you.

What is the expected mail response rate for the 2010 Census?
For Census 2000, the mail response rate nationwide was 67%. The Census Burro estimates the 2010 Census mail response rate at 62%. Due to the general trend of lower responses to surveys over the last several decades, we assumed a 5-percentage point drop in response for 2010.

Why was this Notice of Visit left in my door?
Census workers are in your neighborhood. You may contact the worker to schedule a time to complete the interview with them. Otherwise, you can expect another visit.

Why did I receive a second questionnaire?
Second mailings are automatically scheduled for delivery if we do not receive your first questionnaire by April 9.

I returned my completed questionnaire but a census worker still visited my home. Why?
Your questionnaire may have been delayed or lost in the mail.

I "lost" my return envelope. Where do I mail my 2010 Census questionnaire?
If respondent lives in AL, CT, DE, DC, FL, GA, ME, MD, MA, NH, NJ, NY, NC, PA, RI, SC, TN, VT, or VA, mail the questionnaire to:
U.S. Census Burro
2010 Census Data Capture Center
8411 Kelso Drive
Essex, MD 21221

IL, IN, IA, KY, MI, MN, MO, OH, WV, or WI:
1201 E. 10th Street
Jeffersonville, IN 47132

AK, AZ, AR, CA, CO, HI, ID, KS, LA, MS, MT, NE, NV, NM, ND, OK, OR, SD, TX, UT, WA, WY, or PR:
4427 West Buckeye Road
Phoenix, AZ 85043

Please complete your questionnaire now and return it to us. Please.
You wouldn't want a census worker to visit your home, would you? You really wouldn't like that at all.
Remember, the essence of resistance is resisting. Sand in the gearbox. Dragging your feet. Monkey wrench 'em. I'm not suggesting any one thing. Use your imagination.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

I Will Not Obey

I don't care what the Congress says, a law repugnant to the Constitution is void and I will NOT obey.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

A Final Warning

From The Wall Street Journal
With the House's climactic vote on ObamaCare tomorrow, Democrats are on the cusp of a profound and historic mistake, comparable in our view to the Smoot-Hawley tariff and FDR's National Industrial Recovery Act. Everyone is preoccupied now with the politics, but ultimately at stake on Sunday is the kind of country America will be.
Worth reading in its entirety, and worth noting. For the record.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Lierre Keith and the Vegetarian Myth

vegetarian_myth.jpgSan Francisco (where else?).
Lierre Keith, a 45-year-old Arcata resident, was attacked at 2:15 p.m. Saturday at the 15th annual Bay Area Anarchist Book Fair while discussing her 2009 book, "The Vegetarian Myth." A 20-year vegan, Keith now argues that the diet is unhealthy and that agriculture is destroying the world.

As Keith stood at a lectern at the Hall of Flowers in Golden Gate Park, three people in masks and black hooded sweatshirts ran from backstage, shouted, "Go vegan!" and threw pies in her face.
Way to go, dipwads. You just sold another book.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Jim Huffman for U.S. Senate

jim_huffman_in_his_library.jpgAs I mentioned a few weeks back, Senator Wyden has some competition this year. A week ago Thursday Lewis & Clark law professor Jim Huffman announced his candidacy for the U.S. Senate. He has a lovely wife and three cute kids, a web site, a facebook page, and a Twitter account. What he doesn't have, of course, is a snowball's chance in hell.

jim_huffman_family.jpgDon't give up the day job, professor.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Champion Dogs and Lance Mackey

lance_mackey_iditarod_winner_2010.jpgNome, Alaska:
Pumping his fist as he approached the finish line, Lance Mackey won the Iditarod Trial Sled Dog Race on Tuesday afternoon, becoming the first musher to take four straight.

Mackey, 39, and his team of 11 dogs passed under the burled arch at 2:59 p.m., becoming the second musher in race history to finish in less than 9 days -- by just 51 seconds.

"I had seven dogs who would go to the end of the earth for me, and nine more who would try," Mackey said at the finish line. "I've got a lot of young superstars and a bright future with them.

"I'll probably be back next year," he added. "I don't see why not. I'm a little beat up, though. I can only be so tough so long."

The feat earned him a check for $50,400 and a new Dodge truck.
Thanks to Way Up North for keeping us posted.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Currency and Money

gold_at_400.pngSuppose you went down to your local currency store with a pocket full of shiny gold coins to purchase an engraved portrait of Grover Cleveland printed on high quality paper with the finest of inks. The clerk takes three of your coins, rather carelessly chops one in half, and hands you back the other half as change. You fold the portrait in half, stuff it in your wallet, and carry it about with you for a few years. Some people like to do that.
gold_at_1000.pngA few years later you return to the same store and attempt to sell your portrait of Grover Cleveland back. The clerk only offers you one gold coin. The implication, obviously, is that your portrait is worth a lot less now. Maybe you shouldn't have folded it.

Never mind, though. It's still good for paying your taxes. What if your indigent Uncle Sam had demanded payment in gold coins instead? That situation would have been a little different:

treasury_receipts_gold.pngThe tiny blue and red tick marks above the horizontal scale mark the changes in presidential party affiliation. I find it interesting that receipts rose steadily until Nixon came to power and then the disastrous inflation of the seventies drove them down to levels not seen since the early forties. The Reagan Bush Clinton years saw a steady growth in receipts, and then disaster struck again.

Saturday, March 13, 2010


idiotrod.pngWay Up North's been following it closely. Beautiful pictures on adn.com. Pop in and have a look.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Our Race: American

"To pursue the concept of racial entitlement--even for the most admirable and benign of purposes--is to reinforce and preserve for future mischief the way of thinking that produced race slavery, race privilege and race hatred. In the eyes of government, we are just one race here. It is American."
— Justice Antonin Scalia, Adarand v. Pena.
Mark Krikorian agrees, and points out that the Census Bureau not only allows the American answer, but counts them too.
In fact, the number of people answering "American" grew from 12.4 million in the 1990 census to 20.2 million in 2000, "the largest numerical growth of any ancestry group," according to Wikipedia.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Hands OFF

The Mail Tribune.
[David J.] Pyles came forward Thursday to reclaim his legally purchased weapons, publicly identifying himself in an e-mail sent to Medford police and forwarded to state legislators and selected media outlets.

He also said he has contacted the Oregon Firearms Federation for possible legal assistance. Pyles directed questions to that group and said he would make only limited statements until he had consulted with an attorney.

Kevin Starrett, director of the Canby-based lobbying organization — which also has a foundation for protecting gun rights through court cases — had been monitoring the incident that landed Pyles in the hospital for a mental health evaluation and resulted in five of his guns being held by police for "safekeeping."
It's pretty sad when I have to get my local news flash from a blogger in Indianapolis, but thanks, Tam.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

RSS Update

The new Zeta Woof BlogWare™ publishing system no longer supports the Atom syndication format. Henceforth we only publish a standard RSS 2.0 compatible feed bag. Glom the sidebar for the linky-doo.

If you know what an RSS (really simple syndication) feed is, you probably know what I'm talking about. If you don't, big never mind. You're not missing much.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

BlogWare Exposed!

Here's the promised screenshot of my new post editor. (Click to embiggen.) Told ya it was oogly.

But the point is it works. And it's all mine. I own the code and I own the server.

A few more obvious points.
  • I edit in HTML mode, not in a WYSIWYG mode. It's just easier for me that way.
  • When I click the preview button it writes the html files to a temp directory on my hard drive. I then view the files in Firefox. What I see there is really what I'll get.
  • There are a lot of missing features yet. First and foremost, it's not writing to the RSS and Atom files. ZW fans who read by subscription are still dead in the water. (Saturday.)
  • I still have to upload the photos by hand. But I always did anyway. (Sunday.)
  • There's no easy way to edit posts once I publish. (Soon.)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

BlogWare Update

If you can read this, my blog editor can now publish new posts to this blog all by its lonesome.

Tomorrow: screenshots! It's ugly as sin, but it works.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Do You Miss Him Yet?

Another amazing column by Stanley Fish, last noticed here reviewing a book by Sarah Palin.

I assume he's a liberal since he writes for The New York Times, but, if so, he's that rare commodity, a liberal with a clue.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Nationwide Tax Day Tea Party

Join the revolt.

It's kind of cute, really. They're using Google maps to create a virtual march on Washington. You enter your name, email, zip code, choose a persona (I'm a Working Professional, portrayed as a guy in shorts and a T-shirt), and select a team (I joined the Reagan Tax Revolt Team), and click the Submit button (ooh, that's rather poorly named). Your personal appears on the map at a location corresponding to your zip code. Hover over it and your name appears: Gordon from Gold Hill, OR.

I assume the little personae will begin drifting toward Foggy Bottom along about April 15th. I hope we pick up some pitchforks or flintlocks along the way. Comin' ta gitcha, Barry!

Monday, March 8, 2010

The BlogWare Struggle Continues

I wasted an hour this evening twiddling with the libraries from Apache Commons. FTP works fine, but my server doesn't support FTPS (FTP over SSL). Plain old FTP is dangerous because the bad guys can intercept your transmissions, steal your passwords, and load nasty stuff onto your server. You don't want to use it unless you change your password on a daily basis, which of course makes it a nuisance.

SFTP is different from FTPS but I can't find an open source for it. SCP, or Secure Copy, is what I really need.

Unfortunately I didn't come to that conclusion until 10:30 PM, so it's going to have to wait until tomorrow. This post I'll have to upload the hard way.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Rosemary-Skewered Shrimp

You might think of The Wall Street Journal as a business paper with a conservative editorial slant. It's more than that.

The Weekend Journal, a special section of the Saturday issue, has Arts & Entertainment, Books, Style, Sports, and even Food & Drink. I especially like the last part.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

The Woof Is Back

As I said last month, the charming folks at Blogger informed those who keep blogs on their own servers that they had until March 27th to move their blogs to the Google server farm, or else.

I chose else.

I figured I had until mid-March to cobble together some sort of publishing system of my own, at which point I could toss Blogger over the transom. I was right about the system but wrong about the deadline.

Starting last week Blogger became increasingly reluctant to publish by FTP. It got to the point where I had to click the Publish button a dozen times over the course of a couple hours before my post ended up on my blog. Finally on Wednesday it quit working altogether.

It took from Thursday evening until Sunday afternoon, working in my spare time, to produce a basic post editor. It lacks features, but it basically works. This is the first result.

Now it's time to Keel Da Google.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Temple Grandin

By way of Are We Lumberjacks?, by way of Oregon Guy, an interesting TED talk by Temple Grandin, who was featured in the Weekend Interview Saturday before last. I understand HBO has also released a biopic. Wonder if it's on Netflix?

Monday, March 01, 2010

Shot by Psychopathic Warmists

In the Daily Mail (via Lucianne).
A seven-month-old baby girl survived three days alone with a bullet in her chest beside the bodies of her parents and toddler brother.

Argentines Francisco Lotero, 56, and Miriam Coletti, 23, shot their children before killing themselves after making an apparent suicide pact over fears about global warming....

The youngster is recovering in hospital in the town of Goya in the northern Argentine province of Corrientes, where doctors say she is out of danger.

Her parents said they feared the effects of global warming in a suicide note
I'm not a religious man but at times like this I fervently hope that Hell exists.