Thoughts Gallery May 2003
May 1

Today i learned that my grandfather had died, and that they are burying him next wednesday.  Only my mom is going out there due to the non-weekend funeral arrangements. It's interesting how in death you find out more about a person's background that in life and coversations with the person.  It seems there have been many sudden decisions made by his side of the family in terms of funeral arrangements, would've been nice is they would consider more of other people desiring to attend and offer their condolances. Our hearts are with you as you miss your companion. We pray that you can find peace in Als memories and hope in the resurrection. May you find the strength to face each day with faith and continue to share your talents with those around you. 

Alfred Carson Welker, age 79, passed away suddenly on Thursday, May 1, 2003 in Phoenix, AZ of complications following abdominal surgery. Mr. Welker was born 18 January 1924 to the late Nels Carson and Effie Barkdull Welker in Ada County, Idaho.. He served in WWII in Italy and was a graduate of University of Utah with a business major. He owned several retail stores in various states and later was in insurance and real estate in the Phoenix area. Mr. Welker has lived in Snowflake, AZ since September 1994. As a devout member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he served faithfully 3 missions in Mesa, AZ, Laie, Hawaii, and Snowflake, AZ, specializing in Family History/ Genealogical Research and held many other church callings. After returning from the mission in Hawaii he served as Director of the Snowflake-Taylor Family History Center for the year 1999. He was married to Opal Braden in the Salt Lake Temple in 1946 by Spencer W. Kimball, and is survived by his daughter, Joellyn Machnics of Chagrin Falls, Ohio. He was later married to, and is survived by, Bonnie Smedley Apgood of Phoenix in 1992. He will be greatly missed by other survivors, including 3 sisters Lucille (Dixie) and Stuart Lloyd Davis of Salt Lake City, UT, Olive Marie Jenkins (late Tate Jenkins) of Boise, Idaho; Ruth Lanore Dwyer of Scottsdale, AZ; one brother David Gilbert and Margery Welker of Salt Lake City, UT. He was preceded in death by a brother, Charles "Chuck" Welker. Mr. Welker was loved by countless others. He served his community and neighbors willingly on a daily basis up until the time of his death. Funeral services will be held at 11:00 A.M. Wednesday, May 7, 2003 at the Snowflake Temple View Chapel of the L.D.S. Church. There will be a viewing from 6-8 PM Tuesday, May 6th at the Owens Mortuary in Snowflake and on Wednesday morning at 9:30 AM, prior to the services at the church. Interment will be in the Snowflake Cemetery. This is what was published in the Arizona Republic on 5/4/2003. 

 

May 2
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Spam Sent by Fraud Is Made a Felony Under Virginia Law
In the toughest move to date against unsolicited commercial e-mail, Virginia enacted a law yesterday imposing harsh felony penalties for sending such messages to computer users through deceptive means.
The law would be enforced against those who use fraudulent practices to send bulk e-mail, commonly known as spam, to or from Virginia, a state that is headquarters for a number of major Internet providers, including the nation's largest, America Online. The new statute adds criminal penalties for fraudulent, high-volume spammers. It outlaws practices like forging the return address line of an e-mail message or hacking a computer to send spam surreptitiously. Those found guilty of sending more than 10,000 such deceptive e-mail messages in one day would be subject to a prison term of one to five years and forfeiture of profits and assets connected with these activities.
        Public outrage at spam is causing states and Congress to start looking at stronger measures against it. The Internet industry estimates that spam represents nearly half of all e-mail sent. And a new report by the Federal Trade Commission yesterday found that two-thirds of spam is sent with either false return addresses or a misleading subject line. Such anger from computer users is even causing some in the industry to support federal legislation, if only to avoid having to deal with a patchwork of state anti-spam laws. More than two dozen states have anti-spam laws, but enforcement problems and low penalties have made many of the laws ineffective. Virginia's governor, Mark R. Warner, said the new law could have a significant effect on spam because half of all Internet traffic flows through the state. The passage of e-mail through Virginia-based Internet service providers, he said, gives state prosecutors the ability to reach the purveyors of spam in other states and jurisdictions, noting that an earlier, weaker state anti-spam law had survived constitutional challenges.
       "Many spammers see the current system that imposes civil fines as just a cost of doing business," Governor Warner said. "We hope we will see some high-profile prosecutions. If someone faces a jail sentence and a major forfeiture of assets, it will serve as a deterrent."  But some legal experts said they doubted whether Virginia would have as much of an impact as Mr. Warner suggested. Legal cases, they said, would probably be bogged down by questions over jurisdiction. Moreover, there are practical problems that limit the ability of prosecutors to reach beyond their own states. Shane Ham, a senior analyst who studies anti-spam legislation for the Progressive Policy Institute, said, "I can't imagine the state attorney general in Virginia getting a lot of cooperation if they call up the police in California saying that they want them to arrest and extradite someone who is wanted for spamming." Experts say these state rules do not appear to have had a significant effect on spam but have instead perplexed big corporations, like credit card companies and catalog merchants, that do business by e-mail. The group would particularly like to avoid provisions that could force marketers who are found to violate the law to make payments to individuals who received their e-mail messages.
        This week, Senator Charles E. Schumer of New York introduced a bill, intended, he said, to impose criminal penalties on senders who repeatedly violate the law and to create a national registry of people who do not want to receive spam. "Last year, spam was an annoyance," Mr. Schumer said yesterday. "This year, it is a significant problem, and next year, it could start to really kill the use of e-mail." All these proposals are meant to restrict deceptive marketers those selling things like rich-quick schemes and penis enlargers as well as merchants of pornography. They do not address the great quantities of nondeceptive marketing e-mail sent by big companies and even the Internet service providers themselves. America Online, for example, sends nearly two million marketing e-mail messages a day to its 35 million members.
But the diffuse nature of the Internet defies orderly regulation, even at the national level, when e-mail travels from state to state and country to country, often in untraceable ways.

May 3
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 Richard Rubin pats his 800-pound pig, Sky, after his return home to his East Hill pen in Plainfield, Vt. It has become a rite of spring on East Hill. The fields emerge from the snow; the buds appear on the trees; and Sky lumbers back into the idyll that is his summer home.
May 4
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Someone stole our dog today. =(  In the 20 minutes we were gone shopping to a nearby target store, someone took Mac.  We are very suspisious of the neighbors in the coldesac and our tenants, as all gates were locked and secured as we had left them.  No one seems to have heard of seen anything as in a typical crime scene. We are also putting up lost dog flyers and checking the local pound in case someone picked him up and he ended up there.  Atlas someone who takes a dog out of a back yard is hardly going to give him up like that especially a full-bred boxer puppy, a more popular dog at this time.  So there's a 70% chance he wandered off and a 30% chance he was taken.
May 5
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We recovered our dog mac today at 12:30am, turns out someone found him yesterday wandering down the street one street over, and picked him up fearing her would get squished by a car.  Someone saw the flyers we posted up and took them to the guy that found the dog.  At least he didn't end up lost for another day or make a trip to the pound. The cats wandered out on the roof in the middle of the night via an open balcony door, recovered Oz about 2:30 and Ms.kitty around 6:30.  You'd think the cats would learn that they can't go anywhere from the rooftop.  So I am extrememly tired from the lack of sleep during the night.
May 6
Obesity has more than doubled in Australia over the past 20 years.
May 7
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An interesting concept to run for office on, how long until this attempt is made for a public office position in the US. I would love to see spiderman run for mayor or big bird run for a public school district position.
Professional wrestler 'The Great Sasuke' has a lawmaker's badge pinned to his lapel before taking his place in the council chamber in Morioka, 290 miles north of Tokyo. Defying critics who called it 'indecent,' Japanese wrestler-turned-politician Murakawa turned up for his first day at work sporting the vividly patterned mask.
May 8
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Enjoyed some good fuddruckers food this evening, and then relaxed to surfing the web until fallings asleep after a long day of work.
Sai Mai, a 26-month-old female tiger, plays with baby pigs at a zoo in Chonburi province, 50 miles east of Bangkok. The Royal Bengali tigress was born in captivity and breast-fed by a female pig for four months after her birth. 
May 9
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I had an interesting meeting with some divorce lawyers today, it's funny to see how they carefully word anythign they say, are are so civil in their communications when you can tell they are frustrated about events, and you have people trying to use references like is the sky blue or not.
By their nature, religious documents and documents pertaining to the practice of a religion can never be subject to exclusive use. Freedom of religion, i.e. the freedom to practice one's religion without interference and without the obligation to belong to and/or pay any particular church, is protected by the constitutions of most countries and takes precedence over copyright. This is particularly true in cases where copyright is not used to promote the spreading of the religious scriptures in question, but to suppress it instead.
 Freedom of Expression Art Form 
May 10
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Supaporn Dongkhair, 23, poses after winning the Miss Thailand heaviest contest with a weight of 167 kg (368 pounds) at an elephant ground and zoo in Nakhorn Pathom, south of Bangkok. The Jumbo Queen contest is held to select the contestant who best exhibits the characteristics of an elephant, by virtue of her grace, elegance and size, to lead the jumbo banquet and help promote elephant conservation causes in Thailand.
May 11
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So I guess gambling doesn't make enough money, so vegas returns to it's roots.  What now casino's can't afford employee's salaries, have to get customers to tip everyone, so that no profits from the gambling are spend on customer service or employee wages...
Live 'dolls' Irene Vlevka and Stacey Linde pose in front of an armoire full of clothes at the Studio 54 nightclub inside the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. The club
announced that Thursday nights will now be known as 'Dollhouse' and VIP guests can dress live male and female 'dolls' in sexy outfits of their choice or have them dress each other. 
May 12
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$5 to the first american that can confirm the license plate of this vehicle! Guess I retained some arabic afterall, at least I'll know how to count the currency bills...
Two sheep travel in their owner's car on a road in Baghdad, Iraq
May 13
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This may be my new home in Castlewood Forest, if all things go smoothly over the next few weeks.  Trying to see about moving into a house and out of the duplex.  I found a nice house on a 1/2 acre lot, one of my main goals was to maintain a large lot size in any neighborhood I move into.
May 14
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 James Keen, a 19-year-old from Scottsville, Ky., shows off his spilt tongue at his home. James got his tongue split in December by a piercer after a surgeon declined to do it for him. He says the piercer used a scalpel heated by a blow torch and no anesthetic. Some say the practice, still relatively uncommon but edging up in popularity, is nothing short of mutilation. Lawmakers in Illinois are considering regulations that would all but outlaw it. 
May 15
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 A member of the public tries out the pews inside the world's first inflatable church displayed at the National Christian Resources Exhibition at Sandown Park, Esher, Surrey. The 47 foot high creation opened its Gothic arches to worshippers on Tuesday to reveal a blow-up organ, a polyvinyl pulpit, an air-filled altar and fake stained glass windows.
May 16
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 A woman enters an inflatable church at the Christian Resources Exhibition in Esher, west of London. The movable PVC structure, which measures some 47 feet (14.33 meters) from floor to steeple, 47 feet (14.33 meters) long and 25 feet (7.62 meters) wide and is billed as the world's first inflatable church welcomed its first worshippers. 
May 17
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 A museum director went on trial in Denmark on charges of cruelty to animals for an exhibit in which goldfish were liquidized in a blender to test visitors' sense of right and wrong.
May 18
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 S
A wall painting cautioning people to be on the alert for low flying planes is seen on the wall of a building at 17 Leonard St., in New York's Tribeca neighborhood, about 10 blocks from where the World Trade Center once stood. James Peterson, 36, the artist who painted the fake 'CAUTION Low Flying Planes' sign, said he did not mean to offend anyone. The painting has angered neighbors and provoked complaints to the city Landmarks Preservation Commission. 
May 19
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 Spent the evening helping my friends Rob & Courtney move into their new apartment up in North Austin where their monthly rent dropped in half from West Campus/CBD rental prices.  After 2 trips of 4 cars each we ended up enjoying some breakfast taco's at Taco Cabana before crashing for the evening.
A Chinese woman walks near a 'Don't Spit' campaign poster in Shanghai. Spitting, backed by a common belief that frequent internal cleansing is good for your health, has a long history in China. A succession of leaders, some of them unabashed public spitters, have tried arguing that it has no place in a modern nation. But now the stigma of SARS, the flu-like virus which has already killed more than 270 people in China, looks as though it might succeed where a century of political campaigns failed. Shanghai announced that a person caught spitting would be fined $24.00.
May 20
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 A blue tit feeding its brood of young in a fully furnished bird box. An Internet site in Norway is offering a bit of reality TV, in the form of the daily life of the birds in their fully furnished nest.
May 21
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 This is an undated handout photo of the threatened Alameda whipsnake. A judge has lifted restrictions on some 400,000 acres in California previously designated critical habitat for the threatened reptile, calling the designation an unlawful land grab by the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service, a property rights group announced.
May 22
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 A U.S. soldier stands guard at a looted former nuclear facility in Tuwaitha, south of Baghdad. The head of the UN's nuclear watchdog agency warned on May 19 that a nuclear contamination emergency may be developing in Iraq and appealed to the U.S. to let his experts back into the country. 'I am deeply concerned by the almost daily reports of looting and destruction at nuclear sites,' International Atomic Energy Agency chief Mohamed ElBaradei said in a statement. 
May 23
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Pentagon Readies Massive Spying System 
To thwart terrorists, the Pentagon is developing a computer surveillance system that would give U.S. agents fingertip access to government and commercial records from around the world that could fill the Library of Congress more than 50 times. The library's collection of more than 18 million books would be dwarfed by the size of the computerized files the government wants to mine for clues that terrorists are planning attacks. The prospect of what the Pentagon calls the Total Information Awareness system has alarmed privacy advocates on both ends of the political spectrum. In February, Congress barred use of the still-to-be-developed system against American citizens and ordered a full description of the plans developed by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA. That report was to be delivered to Capitol Hill on Tuesday. Also Tuesday, the Center for Democracy and Technology, a group that advocates online privacy , was giving a House Judiciary subcommittee a report that concluded, "There are few legal constraints on government access to commercial databases." Neither the Privacy Act nor the Constitution protect consumer data held by private companies, and other laws "are riddled with exceptions for law enforcement or intelligence uses." 
        The center's executive director, Jim Dempsey, said in prepared testimony, "Since 9/11, the FBI is authorized by the attorney general to go looking for information about individuals with no reason to believe they are engaged in, or planning, or connected to any wrongdoing." 
In advice to would-be TIA contractors, DARPA disclosed that the project will require "gathering a much broader array of data than we do currently" and break down barriers that keep separate data already collected by a host of agencies. "The amounts of data that will need to be stored and accessed will be unprecedented, measured in petabytes," the agency instructions said. A byte amounts to the electronic representation of one letter of the alphabet, and a petabyte is a quadrillion 1,000,000,000,000,000 bytes. 
        DARPA, which developed the Internet, is again trying to expand the boundaries of existing technology. Among the largest databases on the Internet is an archive of the last five years of Web pages; it consumes 100 terabytes, or one-tenth of a petabyte.  Despite privacy fears, government documents reviewed by The Associated Press show that scores of major defense contractors and prominent universities applied last year for the first research contracts to design the surveillance and analysis system. Conceived and managed by retired Adm. John Poindexter, the TIA surveillance system is based on his theory that "terrorists must engage in certain transactions to coordinate and conduct attacks against Americans, and these transactions form patterns that may be detectable." DARPA said the goal is to predict terrorist actions by analyzing such transactions as passport applications, visas, work permits, driver's licenses, car rentals, airline ticket purchases, arrests or reports of suspicious activities. Other databases DARPA wants to make available to U.S. agents include financial, education, medical and housing records and biometric identification databases based on fingerprints, irises, facial shapes and gait. 
        TIA is developing breakthrough software "for treating these databases as a virtual, centralized grand database" capable of being quickly mined by counterintelligence officers even though the data will be held in many places, many languages and many formats, DARPA documents say.  Poindexter's project would integrate some projects DARPA has been working on for several years, including an effort to develop a radar-based device that could identify people by the way they walk. Operating on the theory that an individual's walk is as unique as a signature, DARPA-financed researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have been 80 to 95 percent successful in identifying people. If DARPA orders a prototype, the individual "gait signatures" of people could become part of the data accessed by TIA. 
        At a cost of less than $1 million over the past three years, researchers headed by Gene Greneker have been aiming a 1-foot-square radar dish at 100 test volunteers to record how they walk. Elsewhere at Georgia Tech, DARPA is financing other researchers who use video cameras and computers to try to develop distinctive gait signatures. "One of the nice things about radar is we see through bad weather, darkness, even a heavy robe shrouding the legs, and video cameras can't," Greneker said in an interview. "At 600 feet we can do quite well." 
        The target doesn't have to be doing a Michael Jackson moonwalk to be distinctive, because the radar detects small frequency shifts in the reflected signal off legs, arms and the torso as they move in a combination of different speeds and directions. The system could be used by embassy security officers to conclude that a shadowy figure observed a few hundred feet away at night or in heavy clothing on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday was the same person and should be investigated further to see if he was casing the building for an attack, Greneker said. 
        At a restricted facility, the technology could warn security officers that an approaching person was probably not an employee by comparing his gait with those on file. "And we now know how to detect people who are carrying heavy packages, which could include a 25-pound bomb in a backpack," Greneker said. DARPA contracting records made available through a Freedom of Information lawsuit filed by the Electronic Privacy Information Center, a privacy advocacy group, show Poindexter agreed to pay for 26 research projects and rejected 154 others through last Dec. 4. Other DARPA contract award data were released under FOIA to the Center for Public Integrity, an ethics advocacy group. 
May 24
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Internet relay chat administrators are considering possibly illegal actions to shut down the Fizzer virus, which has spread rapidly since May 12 through email and the Kazaa file-trading network. Fizzer connects to IRC in order to receive instructions and is proving to be an increasing strain on resources, says QuakeNet security team member Daniel Ferguson. Postings to the IRC-Security email list show some possible solutions, including typing a long string of characters in the IRC chat room where the bot is awaiting instructions. That action will crash the program, and is legal if no other computer functions are affected, says Stanford Law School official Jennifer Granick. However, Granick says manipulating the virus through the Web site it connects to violates the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. Fizzer connects daily to a Geocities Web site that was unreserved, but since has been registered by an IRC administrator who attempted to post uninstall code. The code has since been taken down after it was said to be ineffectual. Despite the illegality of that tactic, Granick says it is unlikely prosecutors would choose to follow up such a case since the statute is too broad. Another part of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act makes it illegal to breach computer protections unauthorized across state lines, though Granick says IRC administrators could claim service provider status to protect themselves.
May 25
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New research from the University of Michigan may help system administrators discover the way hackers invade their systems and undo the damage. Hackers can do a considerable amount of damage to a company's networks in a very brief time, and can leave few traces of what they have done. New research from the University of Michigan may provide a way to rerun what happened to the network and observe it as well as to undo damage. Commercial products already exist to record changes to hard drives and allow limited restorations, but the ReVirt project can do more by hiding the system's operating system and hardware behind a virtual machine that runs a guest operating system. Users interact with the guest system, and ReVirt can log all events on two levels and restore the system by using log entries. The ReVirt logging system is out of the reach of hackers, and its logs are isolated from users. Peter Chen, associate professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the university, says, "Not only can we turn back the clock on an attack to undo the damage, we can also get back to any point during the attack to observe exactly how the intruder breached the system." Chen says ReVirt generates minimal overhead and can store several months of log data on a 100 GB hard disk. 
May 26
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"Game Over for Mod Chips?"
The April sentencing of David "krazy8" Rocci to spend an unprecedented five months in prison and pay $25,000 in fines reflects the threat that the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) poses to mod chips and the idea of user innovation. Rocci, a 22-year-old from Blacksburg, Va., was alleged to have sold 450 Enigmah mod chips over his isonews.com Web site. Mod chips are hardware coded in a way that allows users to modify existing hardware for use with different software. In the case of the gaming industry, brands such as Doom and the Sims enjoy much of their success to enhancements made by hacker-minded gamers, and even software such as Windows Media Player or America Online's instant messenger program give users an opportunity to modify and design the products in a similar manner. However, gaming giants such as Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo oppose the cracking of their hardware, and authorities in the United States appear to view mod chips as a violation of the DMCA. According to the DMCA, it is illegal to circumvent copyright protections, and technology that allows circumvention of copyright protection is a violation of the law as well. But in Australia mod chips are not a violation of copyright protection laws, according to a court ruling last year. Backers of mod chips maintain that the technology is not about playing pirated games but about addressing the needs of users.
May 27
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"The Copyright Wars"
Although the development of technologies that support on-demand digital entertainment--broadband, digital compression, and recordable DVD drives--is proceeding apace, a lack of standards over how copyright owners should be compensated for the use of their content is impeding the rollout of such services. The consumer electronics industry says the technology cannot take off unless content is widely and cheaply available, while the entertainment industry has yet to agree on what forms of content usage deserve remuneration. Consumer groups are outraged that content owners' support of legislation such as the Digital Millennium Copyright Act--which criminalizes digital copying, ostensibly to thwart piracy--is eroding the right to fair use. "What we really want to do is not to stop copying, simply to stop redistributing," explains Universal Music Group's Larry Kenswil. "But the technology available doesn't distinguish between the two." Meanwhile, the consumer electronics industry does not want to completely eradicate copying capabilities, as it would negate the existence of whole categories of products and stifle innovation. Nevertheless, fair use is being scaled back: It is unlawful, for instance, to make backups of DVDs, which leaves law-abiding consumers with no choice but to buy new DVDs when old ones are broken.
May 28
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 John Kamikaze reenacts a scene from The Water Babies, a children's book by the late Reverend Charles Kinsley, as he lays suspended from meat hooks piercing through the skin on his back and legs in the window of the Selfridges department store in London's Oxford Street. The installation was part of the store's Body Craze event, a month-long celebration of the human form, which runs from May 7 until May 31.
May 29
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 Three-year-old Cambodian boy Oeun Sambat hugs his best friend, a 13.1 feet long female python named Chamreun or 'Lucky' in the village of Sit Tbow . Superstitious villagers in the impoverished southeast Asian nation are flocking to see the boy, who they believe has supernatural powers and was probably the son of a dragon in a former life. 
May 30
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 Artificial discs have long been used in Europe but remain experimental in this country. Two major studies nearing completion could change that: For the first time, scientists will know just how such implants compare to the only other alternative - major surgery to fuse together two vertebrae in the lower back.
May 31
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Byrd: 'False Premises' Prompted Iraq War
WASHINGTON - Sen. Robert Byrd accused the Bush administration of using "false premises" to get Americans to accept what he said was an illegal and unprovoked attack on Saddam Hussein's government. His remarks on the Senate floor Wednesday made for some of the toughest criticism of the Iraq war from Congress. Referring to turmoil in postwar Iraq, Byrd, D-W.Va., said: "If the situation in Iraq is the result of liberation, we may have set the cause of freedom back 200 years." The White House dismissed his comments. "It was widely known before the conflict began that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction, as was determined by the United Nations," White House spokeswoman Claire Buchan said. "In fact, we have already found at least two mobile labs" suspected of being capable of producing biological weapons, she said. Administration officials believe the weapons themselves will be found eventually, Buchan said. Byrd's comments come at a time that Democrats are increasingly criticizing Bush's handling of the war's aftermath and the fight against terrorism.
        In recent days, Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina said "America's postwar policy has been confused and chaotic." Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut said "In Iraq, shock and awe is giving way to stumble and fumble." Edwards and Lieberman are presidential candidates who supported the war. Byrd, 85, speaks as the Senate's most senior member and one of the strongest opponents of the war. Earlier this month, he criticized Bush as a "desk-bound president who assumes the garb of a warrior" after Bush flew onto an aircraft carrier to declare an end of major fighting in Iraq. In his speech Wednesday, Byrd stepped up the rhetoric. "It appears to this senator that the American people may have been lured into accepting the unprovoked invasion of a sovereign nation, in violation of long-standing international law, under false premises," Byrd said. "There is ample evidence that the horrific events of Sept. 11 have been carefully manipulated to switch public focus from Osama bin Laden and al-Qaida, who masterminded the Sept. 11th attacks, to Saddam Hussein who did not." He accused the administration of brushing aside revelations that seemed to refute its case against Saddam.
        "Instead of addressing the contradictory evidence, the White House deftly changes the subject," he said. "No weapons of mass destruction have yet turned up, but we are told that they will in time." He said the administration's talk of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction to justify the war "has become more than embarrassing." "It has raised serious questions about prevarication and the reckless use of power," he said. "Were our troops needlessly put at risk? Were countless Iraqi civilians killed and maimed when war was not really necessary? Was the American public deliberately misled? Was the world?" He said the United States "appears to be pushing off Iraq's clamor for self-government." "It is becoming all too clear that the smiling face of the U.S. as liberator is quickly assuming the scowl of an occupier," he said. "The image of the boot on the throat has replaced the beckoning hand of freedom." Byrd also criticized his congressional colleagues, saying they have not asked the tough questions, such as how many troops will have to stay in Iraq and how much will it cost.