7/25/2008

Heh, Obama

Just a quick blurb -
"Barack Obama today canceled a trip to meet wounded American soldiers recovering at Landstuhl, Germany in favor of a shopping trip in Berlin"
... hat-tip to the fine folks over @ RedState
(Update : there was some debate on the underlying validity of the statement)

(Oh, and if you need a good laugh at Pelosi's expense, check this)

7/24/2008

Ever-so-slight DNS vulnerability

In case you didn't catch it, Title = sarcasm. I won't re-hash the details, you can Google it. Let me share one relevant quote from a well-known guy who knows his stuff WRT DNS:

11 seconds.
And AT&T refuses to patch.
And all iPhones use those name servers.
Your move.



Nice.
PS - Seriously, patch.

Citizendium


Ever heard of, or used, Citizendium? From their "Why Us" Page:
What is the point of the Citizendium," you might ask, "when Wikipedia is so huge and of reasonably good quality? Is there really a need for it?"
There is a better way for humanity to come together to make an encyclopedia.

To put it forcefully: there is a better way for humanity to come together to make an encyclopedia. So we make this appeal to you. If we can do better than Wikipedia—or more positively, if we can pioneer a truly effective way to gather knowledge—then shouldn't we?

Sounds interesting, and you can find me there as well :).

7/22/2008

NYT vs McCain

Gratuitously copied from Beth's place ...
The NYT refused to run it saying it needed to agree, not disagree, with Obama. In the spirit of spreading the word, I’m going to do a copycat. So with a hat tip to LC Brendan over at the Rott, here is McCain’s rejected editorial he sent to the NYT:

The DRUDGE REPORT presents the McCain editorial in its submitted form:

In January 2007, when General David Petraeus took command in Iraq, he called the situation “hard” but not “hopeless.” Today, 18 months later, violence has fallen by up to 80% to the lowest levels in four years, and Sunni and Shiite terrorists are reeling from a string of defeats. The situation now is full of hope, but considerable hard work remains to consolidate our fragile gains.

Progress has been due primarily to an increase in the number of troops and a change in their strategy. I was an early advocate of the surge at a time when it had few supporters in Washington. Senator Barack Obama was an equally vocal opponent. “I am not persuaded that 20,000 additional troops in Iraq is going to solve the sectarian violence there,” he said on January 10, 2007. “In fact, I think it will do the reverse.”

Now Senator Obama has been forced to acknowledge that “our troops have performed brilliantly in lowering the level of violence.” But he still denies that any political progress has resulted.

Perhaps he is unaware that the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad has recently certified that, as one news article put it, “Iraq has met all but three of 18 original benchmarks set by Congress last year to measure security, political and economic progress.” Even more heartening has been progress that’s not measured by the benchmarks. More than 90,000 Iraqis, many of them Sunnis who once fought against the government, have signed up as Sons of Iraq to fight against the terrorists. Nor do they measure Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki’s new-found willingness to crack down on Shiite extremists in Basra and Sadr City—actions that have done much to dispel suspicions of sectarianism.

The success of the surge has not changed Senator Obama’s determination to pull out all of our combat troops. All that has changed is his rationale. In a New York Times op-ed and a speech this week, he offered his “plan for Iraq” in advance of his first “fact finding” trip to that country in more than three years. It consisted of the same old proposal to pull all of our troops out within 16 months. In 2007 he wanted to withdraw because he thought the war was lost. If we had taken his advice, it would have been. Now he wants to withdraw because he thinks Iraqis no longer need our assistance.

To make this point, he mangles the evidence. He makes it sound as if Prime Minister Maliki has endorsed the Obama timetable, when all he has said is that he would like a plan for the eventual withdrawal of U.S. troops at some unspecified point in the future.

Senator Obama is also misleading on the Iraqi military’s readiness. The Iraqi Army will be equipped and trained by the middle of next year, but this does not, as Senator Obama suggests, mean that they will then be ready to secure their country without a good deal of help. The Iraqi Air Force, for one, still lags behind, and no modern army can operate without air cover. The Iraqis are also still learning how to conduct planning, logistics, command and control, communications, and other complicated functions needed to support frontline troops.

No one favors a permanent U.S. presence, as Senator Obama charges. A partial withdrawal has already occurred with the departure of five “surge” brigades, and more withdrawals can take place as the security situation improves. As we draw down in Iraq, we can beef up our presence on other battlefields, such as Afghanistan, without fear of leaving a failed state behind. I have said that I expect to welcome home most of our troops from Iraq by the end of my first term in office, in 2013.

But I have also said that any draw-downs must be based on a realistic assessment of conditions on the ground, not on an artificial timetable crafted for domestic political reasons. This is the crux of my disagreement with Senator Obama.

Senator Obama has said that he would consult our commanders on the ground and Iraqi leaders, but he did no such thing before releasing his “plan for Iraq.” Perhaps that’s because he doesn’t want to hear what they have to say. During the course of eight visits to Iraq, I have heard many times from our troops what Major General Jeffrey Hammond, commander of coalition forces in Baghdad, recently said: that leaving based on a timetable would be “very dangerous.”

The danger is that extremists supported by Al Qaeda and Iran could stage a comeback, as they have in the past when we’ve had too few troops in Iraq. Senator Obama seems to have learned nothing from recent history. I find it ironic that he is emulating the worst mistake of the Bush administration by waving the “Mission Accomplished” banner prematurely.

I am also dismayed that he never talks about winning the war—only of ending it. But if we don’t win the war, our enemies will. A triumph for the terrorists would be a disaster for us. That is something I will not allow to happen as president. Instead I will continue implementing a proven counterinsurgency strategy not only in Iraq but also in Afghanistan with the goal of creating stable, secure, self-sustaining democratic allies.


Bite us, Times. You’re just a dinosaur waiting for extinction.
Good to see the New York Times isn't biased or anything.

7/19/2008

Good article @ Wired, IPv6 Security

Over at Blog.wired, a great article has been posted - The Ghost in Your Machine: IPv6 Gateway to Hackers - featuring Command Information's Joe Klein talking about IPv6, security and the impact of unintended consequences ... short version, vendors - get your products' up to speed WRT IPv6

7/05/2008

Some thoughts for fellow Virginians ...

A quick note from the National Taxpayer's Union, about some ongoings in Virginia:
(Sadly, I won't be able to make it ...))


In late February, the Virginia Supreme Court unanimously ruled that a $300 million tax grab on the part of two unelected bureaucratic bodies was unconstitutional. But Governor Tim Kaine refuses to take "no" for an answer ... he now wants to replace the ill-gotten revenue being refunded after the Court decision, by backing new tax hikes that will hit Northern Virginians hard.


The Governor's plan for boosting transportation funds includes raising the motor vehicle tax from 3 percent to 4 percent, raising the annual vehicle registration fee from $39.50 to $49.50, raising the grantor's tax by $0.25 per $100 of value, and raising the retail sales tax in Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads by 1 percent on everything except food and drugs.


One of the organizations on the losing end of the Supreme Court ruling, the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority (NVTA), is counting on an infusion of tax dollars from the Governor's scheme to bankroll its ambitious projects. Rather than prioritizing government spending and eliminating unnecessary programs elsewhere in the budget to come up with the money, some public officials would allow the NVTA to prey on your wallet!


On Thursday, July 10 at 7:00 pm the NVTA is holding a public hearing at George Mason High School. Join the National Taxpayers Union in voicing your opposition to more tax hikes to fund an unelected and unaccountable bureaucracy.


The details of the meeting are as follows:
Public Hearing: Northern Virginia's Transportation Needs
Northern Virginia Transportation Authority
Date: Thursday, July 10
Time: 7:00 PM
Location: George Mason High School, 7124 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22043



More details are available here, and a map is available here.


Please mark your calendar for next Thursday and plan on attending. With your help, NTU can win the fight to keep more of your hard-earned money where it belongs ... in your pocket.
Sincerely,
Your NTU Grassroots Action Team



Also, more Virginia-relevant items of interest here
... and checkout their ratings of the 2008 candidates (hint : Obama=F)
... and note that they also (rightfully!) support the Fair Tax!


/TJ ... still on vacation!