Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Digg Report

Digg Report: Today's #1 Digg, at 3466 Diggs, is a link to a picture of a cardboard box mod of a Linux desktop.

The main idea: Linux users are cheap.

Alrighty. As a social aggregator of important stories and ideas, Digg continues to impress.

Cox and Forkum on Chavez and His Hospitality

The immortal (we wish) Cox and Forkum on Chavez and his promise to expel foreigners who speak unkindly about him and his dictatorship. Go check it out and get a chuckle.

Frank Lloyd Wright's Genius on Display in the Desert

One of the advantages of living in Southern California is that Frank Lloyd Wright's Teliesin West home and architectural school are only a few hours drive away. I'm still kicking myself for not taking the time to stop by during my last trip to Arizona, but I was in a bit of a rush.

The linked story puts me in a serious mood for a road trip.

Ferarri 430 Scuderia Berlinetta

My, my, my, but this is a beauty. 2.45kg per HP. God, but that has to be fast. It's even sort of fuel efficient, when you consider that it's so light that it requires a smaller engine to achieve supercar performance.

Take a peek. She's purty.

Constitutional Right to Experimental Drugs? I Don't Think So

There are two things terribly wrong with the idea of a "Constitutional right" to experimental drugs. First, such a right is impossible, because one can't have a right to something that someone else must produce. Second, we should already have the right to access experimental drugs (at our own costs), but the FDA stands in the way. All that needs to happen is that the FDA is disbanded, or at the very least its restrictions on experimental drugs need to be lifted.

Just as it's wrong for government to try to create a "right" that requires expropriating the property of one person to give it to another, it's wrong for government to prohibit individuals from accessing any product they want to buy.

There's a grievous misconception regarding the Constitution and rights in this country, and it's not getting any better.

Turkey Votes Down the MIddle

Well, it looks like the Turkish election turned out lukewarm--the Islamists won, but not enough so that they could overturn the largely secular Turkish constitution. But, that's for now, and things certainly seem to be heading in the wrong direction.

So far, Turkey's been an example of a largely Muslim population living under secular rule. We should all hope that doesn't change any time soon.

Update: Cox and Forkum have a bit of a different take.

Putin Youth

This seems a lot like the Hitler Youth and the USSR's Pioneers. Putin's putting together his own little group of "Putin Youth," who, as in the previous examples, may very well represent the "shock troops" for, at the very least, spreading the propaganda he needs to continue grabbing power.

Things in Russia keep growing more and more ominous.

Chinese Spies Caught

I know, I know, we all have spies. But it's still news when they get caught. These Chinese spies were smuggling out CDs full of information from a US defense contractor, which is of concern for two reasons.

First, it seems that the Chinese might be a little more into industrial espionage than most, since they don't have the sort of socioeconomic system that by itself can create the sorts of inventions required by a truly first-world industrial nation.

Second, this is information from a defense contractor, which given China's already significant military build-up just gives more reason for alarm.

But, at least these two were caught, and I suppose that's some good news, after all.

Daily Kos Calls American Soldiers "Serial Killers"

I don't often write about the Daily Kos, because it's the worst of the Left all neatly arranged into one irrational, evil screed after another. But this post at the blog NW Republican points out a particularly nasty Daily Kos post that I think is worth knowing about.

I didn't follow the cached links that he talks about, because I really don't want to see into the mind of anti-American evil, but you can, if you want. But, as the poster says, be forewarned.

Sudan President Declares 2007 "Year of Peace" (because everyone's dead?)

The Sudanese President, Omer Al-Bashir, has declared 2007 the "Year of Peace." Now, by all accounts, one declares a year to be "of something" beforehand, because that's what everyone is going to try to make the year into, or, I think more often, afterwards, because that's what the year was.

Calling it the "Year of Peace" in Sudan toward the end of July, however, is either just plain stupid or it's the height of naivete. Or, perhaps, it's just another cruelty being played out on the people of the region. Sort of rubbing salt in some wounds, that sort of thing.

Celebrity Report (Not Really, Though)

Celebrity Report: This isn't the typical celebrity report, it's really more a bit of trivia. See, I have these Google alerts setup for a few celebrities about whom I've heard good things (politically and philsophically) and, each day, I'm delivered with a number of stories about said celebrities.

The trivia is this: by far the most prolific number of hits belong to John Malkovich. But, they're not mostly actually about the actor himself. Rather, they're some reference to some other actor or to some weird existentialist notion involved in some way or another with the movie "Being John Malkovich."

Which for whatever reason, I just find kind of odd.