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Thursday, October 09, 2003

Goodbye, Blogspot 

This is my last post on this blog...because I have decided to move to my own domain. Please click this link to go to king-of-fools.com. If you have a link to this blogspot blog, now would be a great time to change that.

Blogspot is not that bad of a service for the price. If I was paying for it, I would be dissatisfied, but for free it was a great starting point. My main reason for moving is to use Movable Type as well as eliminate downtime. If king-of-fools.com is not working for you yet, I apologize. The DNS update should be complete by Friday.

Again...Go here:

The King

Wednesday, October 08, 2003

Free Reading Material 

Bored? Need something to help pass the time or battle insomnia? Try these:
The Carnival of the Vanities, where people submit their best posts.

The Bonfire of the Vanities, where they submit their worst.


Kindergarten, for Men 

Is this a passing oddity or an emerging trend? Only time will tell:
BERLIN (Reuters) - German women fed up with their partners' grumbling on weekend shopping trips can now dump them at a special kindergarten for men offering beer and entertainment.

"The women are issued a receipt for their partners when they hand them in and can pick them up again when they return it to us later," Alexander Stein, manager of the 'Nox Bar' in the northern city of Hamburg told Reuters on Tuesday.

The men are given a name badge on arrival and for 10 euros ($11.80) they get two beers, a hot meal, televised football and games.

Stein said the idea for the Saturday afternoon men's creche, or "Maennergarten," came from a female customer who thought it would be a good way of getting shot of her husband so she could shop in peace.

"She found it all too stressful and thought this might be the solution. Both were very happy with the way it turned out.

"Last week the men had a remote control car to play with. Next week there's going to be a mini racetrack," said Stein.

They are also offering a drilling workshop.

"It beats sitting around in shoe shops, that's for sure," one man told the Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper.

The funniest part of the whole thing is the name badge and the receipt which is required to collect your man. What would happen if some woman would (accidentally!!!) lose her receipt?

Acidic Commute 

Houston drivers are facing a difficult commute this morning:
About 4:30 Wednesday morning, the driver of an SUV lost control of his vehicle during a tire blow out and struck the 18-wheeler carrying Hydrochloric Acid.

The 18-wheeler rolled on its side, spilling the load of hazardous material on the northbound side of Interstate 45. The spill has closed the northbound side of I-45, the HOV lane, and the northbound feeder of I-45.

HCl is a pretty nasty substance. Hazmat teams are working on the problem, but how do they deal with this kind of problem? Do they actually remove the acid or just use a base to neutralize it? If they do neutralize it, what is the resulting product and how do they deal with that? The news will undoubtably inform the city when the clean-up is complete, but it is doubtful that they will explain what it takes to pull it off.

Dems Need to Forget the Recall 

Hugh Hewitt is spot on once again in this Weekly Standard article:
WITHIN MINUTES of the release of exit polls from California last night, Democrats had wheeled as one and began the hopeless attempt to spin the disastrous verdict. Senator Dianne Feinstein led the charge, but the refrain echoed throughout the party: This was a verdict on Davis's handling of the budget, a handling very similar to the fiscal mismanagement on the national level.

Howard Dean had the message on his website 18 minutes after the polls closed:

'Today's recall election in California was not about Gray Davis or Arnold Schwarzenegger. This recall was about the frustration so many people are feeling about the way things are going. . . . Tonight the voters in California directed their frustration with the country's direction on their incumbent governor. Come next November, that anger might be directed at a different incumbent . . . in the White House.'

The comparison of Grey Davis to Bush is a very interesting tactic. The Democratic party defended Grey and all his policies to the end, but now that he has fallen, they have completely reversed themselves. Now they are proclaiming that Bush's policies are horribly flawed just like those of Davis and 2004 is not really a Presidential election but actually a recall election. I guess when life gives you lemons...try to put a sour face on your opponent too. What is interesting is the potential result from this strategy:
This delusional spin is great news for Republicans across the country. Gray Davis was booted from office because he imposed a massive tax hike on all California drivers while fecklessly allowing illegal aliens to get drivers' licenses. Davis was all Clinton-Carville when it came to the politics of personal destruction, and he didn't bother to disguise his total dependence on Sacramento's iron triangle of special interests: Indian gambling, trial lawyers, and public employee unions.

All of which is obvious. But when Democrats reflexively reject even the obvious conclusions, they demonstrate a capacity for political suicide reminiscent of Britain's Labour party in the late '70s and early '80s. The refusal of Dean and other senior Democrats to understand Tuesday's vote is an almost certain indication of electoral disaster ahead.

So far, everything out of the Presidential challengers has been the anti-Bush platform. "If he is for it, we are against it." It will be interesting to see if this changes at some point - possibly once someone wraps up the nomination.

UPDATE: Weintraub makes a similar observation:

Several of the Democrats I spoke to were in strong denial about the message sent by the voters, the message being that they, and Davis, have been poor stewards of state government. They see this is an isolated event, a venting, that will quickly pass while they fight to maintain everything they have done the past five years. My gut tells me they are wrong, that there is something deeper here, a desire for fundamental change in the way the state does business and in the way politics works, or doesn’t work, in California.
(Hat-tip to Instapundit)

Tuesday, October 07, 2003

Hard Disk 'Airbag' 

Here is a fascinating new development from IBM engineers:
The world's first laptops incorporating automatic protection against the damage caused by a drop have been launched by US computer maker IBM.

The new ThinkPad systems use an onboard accelerometer to detect a sudden fall. If an impact seems imminent, then within a tenth of a second the computer's hard drive stops writing data and the read/write head is retracted to a safe position.

This is a pretty amazing idea. Anything to prevent the dreaded "low altitude read" which is so hard on the disk surface, not to mention the read/write head. Sometimes it feels like very large companies such as IBM have lost the ability to innovate. This is a good sign that the corporate culture is not stifling creativity.

Monday, October 06, 2003

Current Project 

You may have noticed that I haven't been blogging much lately. There is a good reason for that. I am currently working on a hosting solution which will allow me to move off of BlogSpot and onto my own domain. I am also working on a site redesign and have developed some extremely cool Movable Type templates.

My new URL will be king-of-fools.com but please don't go there yet...