November 11, 2002

I've Moved!


Pundit Ex Machina can now be found at www.SeanKirby.com

November 10, 2002

Wake me up when the bombing starts

In keeping with what I assume to be some kind of "Eleven strikes and you're out" policy by the UN, Saddam Hussein has been offerend one last chance to comply with demands for Weapons Inspectors. I'm sure he'll know we're serious this time.

We are serious this time, right?
British Tabloids - now with 28% more homophobia!

Royal butler a 'queen': report

FRESH claims that British royals hushed up the rape of a servant, and tabloid reports that a butler passed sensitive information to his boyfriend caused more embarrassment for the royal family today.

November 09, 2002

Trying to install and configure open source blogging systems like Moveable Type or Greymatter is as absolutly the most infuriating task I know of. Has anyone, anywhere, ever, completed the install of one of these systems without recieveing one, two, or ten consecutive errors? Is there such a thing as a clean install? It sure doesn't seem like it.

And the documentation that comes with Moveable Type sucks.

November 08, 2002

Australia is being described as a "Problem state" for abstaining from a UN vote banning torture. I guess it's supposed to be more like Saudi Arabia, who recently ratified the UN convention banning discrimination against women.

Sometimes signing a UN treaty doesn't necessarily mean you'll obey it, other times it almost ensures you will not. Australia does not torture people, other countries that have signed the treaty do, so what are we talking about here?

November 07, 2002

I've just registered an account with a new site hosting provider, which should become active within the next day or two. After that, I imagine it will take me some time to import my blog archives, and get the code tweaked just right. So basicly, I'll be moving out of here in the next week. Stand by.

November 06, 2002

Someone tell Allen Greenspan that I owe him a coke, just for the pure balls of it. 50 points...
Some “day after election day” thoughts

I think we can finally but to bed all the screaming about Bush not being legitimate, people like him, they really like him. In that same note, Crossfire made an interesting point: the biggest issue among Americans at election time, bigger then Terrorism, Education, or defense, is the Economy. 25% of people in fact said that the economy was their biggest concern. And yet, they demonstrated that concern for the economy by going to the polls and voting for Republicans in record numbers. All we’ve been hearing from Democrats is that Bush has been intentionally avoiding making issue of the economy, that he’s manufacturing a war on Iraq to take people’s minds off economic issues.

I’d like a registered democrat to answer me this: Since nobody fell for Bush’s Iraq straw man, since Americans rate economic issues so highly above all others – then why did they elect more Republicans anyway? Could it be, that in the minds of the American people, Republicans might actually be *gasp* better at solving the economic woes of the country?
I Didn’t Vote

Just so my American readers know – no, I did not vote. I am old enough (barely), but I was born and raised in Canada. I don’t have a home state, thus no governor or senator. Catch you in two years.
Democratic Spin:

Remember kids: when Democrats win, it's because the people have made their collective voices heard. When Republicans win, it's because of clever strategizing and gobs of soft money. Just watch the TV - every Democrat you hear will "praise" Bush for his "deft" maneuvering. If you think it’s odd to hear a democrat use “Bush” and “deft” in the same sentences – it’s because it is. They want to play the angle that Bush won because he’s a shrewd, rich campaign monkey. You will never hear them talk about how the election, you know, reflects the will of the country. In their minds, the will of the country is to vote Democrat, anything else, and they must have been tricked.

November 05, 2002

The new ad-tastic Daily Pundit has a breakdown of which bloggers are covering the election in which states. CNN has nothing on us.

November 03, 2002

Speaking of political cartoons, Reason magazine has brought the funny.
American Realpolitik is a great blog that always finds the best political cartoons. I really like this set.
Maybe we should buy Glenn an assistant?

It's for the good of the blogosphere.
Here is a lengthy discussion of voting theory, and why plurality voting is the worst system there is. It raises a lot of interesting questions I'm not nearly qualified to answer. I can see why it might make sense to have people rate the candidates, instead of just choosing one across the board though.
Yes, I know I haven't been around for a while. It's almost the end of term 1 at school, that means all the work assigned since September is due tomorrow. I'll get back to the blogging after that. Until then, go read a book or something.
The Army is firing Arab linguists, a bunch of them apparently, because they're gay. Excuse me, but if they we're serious about preventing more 9/11's, shouldn't they be hiring every able bodied Arabic translator they can get their hands on?

(via Instapundit)

October 26, 2002

Sen. Paul Wellstone Killed in Plane Crash

Terrible news. Sen. Wellstone, his wife, child, and associates were killed in a plane crash today. My deepest sympathy to everyone affected. I disagreed with Senator Wellstone on many things, and we were on opposite lines of the field in recent months over the Iraq situation. Not in spite of, but because his strong opposition to my point of view, he will be greatly missed.

October 24, 2002

Due to circumstances related to Rogers Cable Corp and the Toronto District School Board existing for the sole reason of tormenting my soul, I have lost the server which I used to use to host by Blogroll and various images. Swift, bloody revolution against both is strongly encouraged.

(Legal Note: Not to be taken as encouragement for swift, bloody revolution -Ed.)
People of Toronto: Your Country Needs you!

This artist wants to photograph 5000 nude people in the streets of Toronto. If they let me wear a wireless laptop, I'll consider showing up and blogging the experience.
An Organization called Reporters Without Borders has just published their first ever “worldwide press freedom index”, which lists all the nations of the world according to the freedom of their press. The United States, surprisingly, ranks 17th, below Costa Rica and most of Western Europe.

I always thought the United States had one of the most free presses in the world, so I was curious as to why it wasn’t in the top five. Their description of how they reach their decisions was fairly vague, and in regards to the United States standing, they had this to say:
“The poor ranking of the United States (17th) is mainly because of the number of journalists arrested or imprisoned there. Arrests are often because they refuse to reveal their sources in court. Also, since the 11 September attacks, several journalists have been arrested for crossing security lines at some official buildings.”
Hmm, interesting. What do they mean by “number of journalists arrested”? Is that a total, or a per capita. The United States, being one of the most populous countries in the world is bound to arrest far more journalists the Costa Rica, simply because there are going to be far, far more of them. Even if the number is a per capita (which I doubt), it’s worth noting that the United States probably has the highest number of journalists per capita of any nation in the world. Thousands of newspapers, radio stations, Local News, CNN, MSNBC. The US media is huge, in part because it is also the major source of news for everyone in the world, not just Americans. A country that has a higher number of reporters per capita will always arrest a higher number of reporters per capita. Has Reporters Without Borders taken these factors into account when building their rankings?

Particularly troubling is their statement that “since the 11 September attacks, several journalists have been arrested for crossing security lines at some official buildings”. I don’t know about the rest of you, but I hardly see arresting an individual for crossing a security line at a government building, while there is a threat of immanent attack, to be an issue of journalistic freedom.

Do Reporters Without Borders look at the cases to see whether a reporter was detained for a legitimate reason? Do they see any legitimate reason to arrest a reporter at all? I’m particularly interested in how the EU, with it’s repressive “hate speech” laws, managed to squeak above the United States, where reporters can and do print just about anything without fear of being arrested for lack of “sensitivity”.

I don’t know what method Reporters Without Boarders uses to gauge journalistic freedom, and see no reason why their opinion should be treated with special attention, anyone can construct a list according to their own vague criteria to express whatever results they choose. However, this list has been widely reported in the (American!) media as if it were fact, when in reality their chosen method of ranking nations seems biased and unscientific at best. To me, it looks like they’ve specifically chosen a method of ranking which penalizes the United States, ironically, for having too many journalists.