Thoughts Gallery May 2001
May 1
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May 2
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It's sad to see people letting the government take over the role of the parents, this is not the responsibility of the police.  The parents should be raising and teaching their kids not the government!!

Police Cite Boy, 7, for Taking $6 From Mom 
BISMARCK, N.D. (Reuters) - As part of a program aimed at cracking down on youthful offenders, a 7-year-old North Dakota boy faced a criminal theft charge after police cited him for stealing $6 from his mother, police said on Wednesday.

According to police, the Bismarck mother discovered $6 missing from a pile of cash she had left lying on the counter in her kitchen over the weekend. When she questioned her two sons about the missing bills, the 7-year-old admitted taking the money.  ``She called the police, she wanted him cited for theft, so that is what we did,'' said Bismarck police Lt. Nick Sevart.  Upon questioning, the boy said he took the money because he wanted to buy a ``Beanie Baby'' toy, Sevart said.

The boy was issued a criminal citation for theft and released to his mother's custody. The matter now heads to juvenile court, where youth counselors will become involved in working out an acceptable punishment, Sevart said.  ``The reason we determine consequences is to help them avoid this type of trouble in the future,'' he said. ``We believe in early intervention.'' 

May 3
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This is a interesting use of wind power this windmill park at the Middelgrunden near Copenhagen is located offshore.  The windmill park contains 20 white windmills and the world's largest, will be inaugurated by city officials and start producing energy on Sunday, May 6, 2001. The Middelgrunden park, with a capacity of 40 megawatts of electricity, will supply 32,000 households or 3 per cent of the Danish capital's electricity consumption.

This is what we need to fill our coastal waters will, not oil wells but pollution free power sources!!  We just need to build them to withstand winds of 200 mph so that the investments won't blow away one day.

May 4
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Can you tell the difference between these two bullets?? One is lead based and the other is dipped in plutonium waste from nuclear power plants.  The shell casing's of the second bullet turn out to be so radioactive that they are caused health issues in the Balkans where the peace keepers used them to restore order.
May 5
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I got my first speeding ticket in a while for 85 in a 65, guess those cops were out there to make some $$ tonight.  Seems that I'm never able to get my inspection done in time either, I tried 3 times this times and the inspection place was closed every time, so in the end I'll pay my fee's yet again for my car registration.  It's such a pain in the ass to have to do this on a annual basis, I wish we could get at least bi-annual registration & inspections for vehicles.
May 6
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I spent most of the day packing and the other half trying to enjoy the outdoors with some of the beautiful weather we've been having.  Now all I need is another day in the week to do laundry and I'll be set.
May 7
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Here's an interesting picture I found of James Buchanan's inauguration over 150 years ago.  It's interesting to see what people still have lying around in their closets, that are still collectable items.
May 8
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Here is the official burial place of James Buchanan in Lacaster, PA.  Wouldn't we all like to have a nice burial ground like this.
May 9
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Here's a 1905 postcard from Buchanan City, Virginia 
May 10
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Just another slow day
May 11
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I saw the movie "A Knight's Tale" today.  It's interesting to see animation effects used more and more in the place of traditional sets built by studio.  It was an entertaining movie, but a VERY predictable plot line.  I'm getting to the point that I would rather see less effects and a better script.  The movie
May 12
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It looks like polygamy is alive and well in the new century. Here's Hugh Heffner with his 7 girlfriends
May 13
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A slow day overall, just packed away for a few more hours.
May 14
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Today is the first day of a 2 week long nightmare.  Fellow employee Marcus Whitfield decided to take a 2 week vacation down to Australia with his girlfriend to enjoy himself.  I guess I need to figure out when I can get down to Belize and enjoy some scuba diving and some mayan ancient ruins.
May 15
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TEHRAN (Reuters) - A 38-year-old Iranian women is to be stoned to death under Iran's Islamic law for murdering her husband, a newspaper reported Wednesday.  An accomplice, a 24-year-old man, will be hanged for the killing of the woman's 42-year-old husband, who was stabbed to death and buried alongside a cow's skull in a fruit garden outside Karaj, a town close to the capital Tehran, Hambastegi daily said.

It did not say when the sentences would be carried out, but public executions normally take place where the crime occurred. Stoning is relatively rare in Iran, where drug smugglers and murderers are regularly hanged under strict Islamic Sharia law.

Men who are stoned to death are first buried waist deep in the ground. If they manage to escape, they can go free. Women are buried deeper to stop stones hitting their breasts.  The last time two Iranians were stoned to death was for adultery in June 1996.

May 16
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Be afraid. Be very afraid. The government wants to use technology to track you down without a warrant. Do you trust big brother?

COMMENTARY -By Paul Somerson -
We've all seen films where someone tags bears with radio transmitters. Or slaps beepers under cars to follow them without being spotted. Or inserts gizmos through Arnold Schwarzenegger's nose or Keanu Reeves's belly button in sci-fi flicks so the bad guys can track every movement the hero makes. Well get ready, because they're about to make a real movie like this, and you're the star.

Over 300 million people worldwide carry cell phones. Most of these devices are always on to receive calls. Service providers today can use triangulation or RF multipath "fingerprinting" techniques to locate you within "a few thousand square feet, or up to six square miles in rural areas," according to Bell Labs.

But the noose is tightening. Part of the 1996 Telecommunications Act mandated Enhanced 911 that would force carriers to be able to locate all callers by October 2001. And newer FCC (news - web sites) rules require greater precision—164 feet for GPS-based phones, 328 feet for network-based triangulation.  The government says that this would help them respond better to the 30 million emergency calls made each year from wireless devices, many of which are made by incoherent or lost callers.

Location-based services (LBS) actually do sound very useful. GPS chips in phones and small tracking devices could locate kids, pets, stolen items, package or pizza deliveries, truck fleets, and anything else that moves. Even edgier are advanced "trigger-mode" services. You could load your whole phone book into a cell phone and have it alert you when a friend or family member happens to be nearby. You could tell your phone you wanted a new Armani suit on sale and have the phone beep if you went past a store with one in your size at your price. Your phone could become a matchmaker at a trade show if you needed 10,000 purple widgets and someone across the hall had them in stock. Or it could find you a date or a mate, like an advanced version of Japan's "lovegetties." Some analysts predict LBS will be a $20 billion business by 2005.

But there's a darker side. Several government agencies are claiming that the 1994 Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act lets them use this technology to track you legally, without a warrant or even probable cause, in what it deems "emergencies." Do you trust these clowns?  And do you trust others who can get their slimy hands on this data? The highway patrol will know you're traveling at 66 mph and be able to pinpoint your location. Ugly gold digging divorce cases will get even uglier as each side subpoenas logs of all addresses a spouse visited for years. Bosses or the IRS will know how long you stayed away from your desk, or map your precise whereabouts during road trips. Is this what we want?

Service providers balked at the October 2001 deadline, whining that they needed more time to pass on all the costs to the public and wriggle out of any liability issues. The FCC agreed to phase in adoption, moving the deadline for total implementation to the end of 2005. It's coming. And since we can't be without our phones, pucker up and kiss your freedom of movement good-bye. Trust me.

May 17
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May 18
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Today is friday.  I took yet another weekend trip to Houston, Texas to visit my family and do some errands.
May 19
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Today I had the unpleasant experience of visiting the dentist.  I had to get two cavities looked at, tooth 17 got filled, and the second cavity on tooth 16 ended up being bad enough that I got a crown instead.  So much for insurance as I still have a bill of like $750 to pay.
May 20
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I saw the movie Shrek today.  It's time to get back into the habbit of seeing the previews or the early showings as they have raised prices again so that a matinee movie is not $7.75 a person!!  It's nice to see we are about 2-3 years away from getting realistic animation to the big screen and probably within 5 years the average person won't be able to tell the difference between anime and human characters.  In my never-ending quest to find good food I ate at Hunan Fu today, they have excellent chinese food.  I tried the sesame chicken which came in a large portion and was perfectly textured with a crunchy shell but juicy chicken with a side of cooked pineapple.
May 21
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Only 5 more days left to pack... Then I will finally get to start the move-in process to the new house I bought

Well today is the first day that Apple's new OS X operating system officially started shipping on it's systems.  Only time will tell as to how good it competes in the marketplace against Windows and Linux

May 22
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May 23
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May 24
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May 25
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FILE -- The SmarTruck, an Army prototype truck, is shown at the Society of Automotive Engineers' World Congress in Detroit, Tuesday, March 6, 2001. The Army's new SmarTruck features bulletproof glass, grenade launcher, laser gun and the ability to foil chasers with oil slicks and smokescreens. The SmarTruck was on display recently at the military logisitic conference in Richmond, Va., in May 2001. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya, file) 
May 26
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Police Nab Breast-Temptress Thieves
BOGOTA, Colombia - Three young Colombian women preyed on men by smearing their breasts with a powerful drug and luring the victims into taking a lick, before making off with their wallets and cars, police said on Friday.  The women stood by the side of the road near bars and restaurants in wealthy parts of the capital Bogota, striking seductive poses to lure men driving by to stop, a police spokeswoman told Reuters.

After licking the women's breasts, the men lost all will-power. They came to their senses hours later to find they had lost their wallets and cars but with no memory of what had happened.  The three women, in their late teens or early 20s, were arrested in Bogota on Thursday in possession of powerful narcotic pills.  ``They dissolved the pills in water and rubbed it into their breasts,'' the spokeswoman said.  Colombia's inventive thieves often dope people to rob them. On rare occasions, some of the victims have died. 

May 27
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Well I moved into my new house last night.  Nothing like finding out your tenants stole your refrigerator & dead bolt locks!!!  Now the process begins of making this place clean and livable.
May 28
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The remodeling of the house starts today.  First job is to get rid of the smell of smoke and the remains left behind from 16 dogs running around the property.
May 29
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Well it's looks like my water heater is gas and not electric.  So I will have to do with cold water for a few days until the gas meter gets turned on again.
May 30
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I had to move out completely from my apartment today, so I'm now camping out in my partially-gutted house.  It's amasing how quickly you desire the little things in life like air conditioning and hot water.
May 31
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Sony Fakes a Film Critic
Call it the case of nonexistent film critic.  Seems David Manning, the reviewer from the Ridgefield Press who raved about Heath Ledger in A
Knight's Tale ("this year's hottest new star!") and gave a big thumbs up to Rob Schneider in The Animal ("another winner!"), is not another Ebert after all, but a character created to pump up Sony movies by the studio's marketing machine. 

Sony studio executives are shocked--shocked!--after learning that Manning is a fake.  According to Newsweek, which broke the story in this week's issue, Manning was concocted by an unidentified Sony marketing executive last July to put a positive spin on the hit-starved studio's films.   In addition to the recent plaudits for A Knight's Tale and The Animal, Manning's manufactured blurbs appeared in print ads for Sony's Hollow Man and Vertical Limit.  Newsweek says Manning's critiques were completely fabricated and the studio has launched an internal investigation into the incident. 

"It was an incredibly foolish decision, and we're horrified," Sony spokeswoman Susan Tick tells the magazine. "We are looking into it and will take appropriate action."  Tom Nash, publisher for the Ridgefield Press, the small Connecticut weekly where the mysterious Manning was supposedly employed, said he became aware of the controversy more than a year ago, but initially thought it was only a mix-up with a review service his paper uses. 

"We thought it was a database error that mixed up a reviewer with our paper," Nash said Monday.  "We buy our movie schedules from a company called Cinemasource and [these ads] also include reviews. "We thought [Manning] was a Long Island News Day guy."   Sony wishes that were so. In Hollywood, where movie marketeers go to great lengths to generate the ever-elusive buzz (often quoting virtually unknown critics or dubious publications), the Manning deception is getting a thumbs-down review from its own honchos. 

"It's hard to believe. It's terrible. Sony has to apologize and pull the ads. That certainly does cross the line. We would never, never, never, ever do that," Revolution Studios honcho Joe Roth tells Newsweek. His company produced The Animal, which Sony is distributing.   The news comes as Sony's marketing crew is taking heat for another of its recent ploys.  The studio broke a long Hollywood tradition of giving away trailers to exhibitors by paying theaters to play previews of The Animal before such blockbusters as The Mummy Returns. (The Animal placed third in its debut over the weekend behind Shrek and Pearl Harbor). 

As for the Manning debacle, Sony reps say the studio is working to remove the fake blurbs from print ads across the country. However, some of Manning's quotes will still show up in newspapers that went
to press over the weekend.  Calls to Manning's office were, of course, not returned.