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United States

Journal: Living Constitution 2

Journal by jlechem
So I'm listening to NPR (liberal junkie radio I know) and they are talking about gun control. I learned a few things about the history of gun control in country that were quite fascinating. However one of the interesting points he brought up was about historical context. The 2nd amendment was written a long time ago and is it still relevant today the exact way it was written then. He brought up an interesting idea would you want an 18th century dentist working on your teeth today? I sure as hell wouldn't. Now think do you want an 18th century document dominating your life today? While not as clear cut as the dentist issue it brings up an interesting point. I think yes and no. But does that mean the entire document should never change? I think the Constitution is a living document. The founding fathers crafted it to be flexible and pertinent to their times but allowed for changes to be made. As time passes ideas in the 18th century no longer apply to people in the 19th, 20th, and centuries beyond. Ideals espoused need to be re-examined to see how they fit into today's society.

I have been on the fence post on this issue for a while but I have come to the conclusion that the living document idea is the best one. If the Constitution could never change ideas that were accepted in the past get forced on future generations. And who is to say those ideas are the correct fit for that generation?
Democrats

Journal: Democrats on the prowl

Journal by jlechem
This may offend some of the 2 or 3 people who read these pointless ramblings of mine. ;) I've been a registered Democrat for a few years now. Mostly due to the ineptitude and retardation of the current Republican president. I'm a conservative in monetary matters to a degree but I'm blue through and through for the most part. Oddly enough I live in the reddest state in the nation Utah. I was listening to NPR, bastion of the elite liberals according Rush Windbag, where the guests were talking about how Democrats are leading in a lot of senate/house races this year. And in states that were very red in the 04 election. I think a lot of this has to do with dissatisfaction with the current Administration. However if Democrats would capitalize this and make a real go of things and consolidate the party and focus on a few key issues( energy, minimum wage, & possibly immigration ) a real change could happen not just anger towards the current president. The ball is in our court we need to run with if as far as possible.
Movies

Journal: Millenium and B movies

Journal by jlechem

So yesterday I was watching a movie called Millennium starring Kris Kristofferson the old man from blade. This movie was made in 1989 if I recall correctly. The movie started well with an airplane crash. During the investigation odd things are noticed. On the black box recorder on of the co-pilots says all passengers are already dead before the crash. During the investigation the lead investigator notices a strange blonde woman dressed as an airline attendant hanging around. She's pretty odd but cute and they end up having a hook up. He eventually finds an odd object in the wreckage and comes to find out the woman is a time traveler. She comes from the future where for some reason people are all sterile. They take people from airplane crashes in the past and move them to the future so they can somehow help with the sterility problem. The problem is somehow a time paradox is created and she has to stop it. Long story short she can't and the future she lives in ends up not happening. The first half of the movie is seen from the man's POV the second half from the woman's POC. Halfway through it got incredibly boring and lost its focus completely. The ending was ok they escape together into the future.

The movie was based on a short story. Maybe as a story it would have been better. My grips about the pacing and plot of the movie aside the idea of a time paradox happening is quite interesting. From the movie if I went back in time and killed my father before I was born what would happen. I would never have been born and thus not been able to build a time machine to go back into the past. If this kind of thing could happen should we ever travel in time assuming we could ever do so? Imagine a world where people could go back and change anything they wanted. Anyone with enough money or power could re-write history to their liking. This brings up another interesting question is time travel even possible? I haven't done any research into this but I find it extremely interesting to think about.

Microsoft

Journal: WGA makes the rounds, again

Journal by jlechem
Well WGA has been in the news a lot lately. And this time it hit home for me. I have an older copy of windows xp I got from an old employer. Probably not legal, I am not 100% certain. However it always worked and I never got any of the so called WGA notices about being not legal. Well that changed with the latest version of WGA. Suddenly I was gettting the nagware/balloons/notices before login about being not correct. I was annoying as hell to say the least. It only took me a few minutes to figure out how to disable it but now I can't run auto updates and none of them will install without this WGA shit. So I'm stuck with no more updates to my box. And we all know how MS is with their patches. This could leave so many people screwed it's not even funny. I can't believe they're even doing this. It seems like so a bad PR move it's unbelievable. I'm so pissed I'm thinking about installing a more user friendly Linux distro over the weekend. As long as I can play my Diablo II and KOTOR II I will be happy. Looks like i might be learning the intracies of gcc afterall.
Television

Journal: Futurama is Back!!!

Journal by jlechem
Oh happy joyous days! The best TV show to grace the airwaves has returned! If you haven't heard the good news Futurama is being brought back from the grave for at least one more season! Read it fresh here. I have all the previous episodes downloaded and have been watching them on my PC. My only fear is that Comedy Central in my area will show them at 1am instead of at a decent time. But some sacrifices must be made in life. Time to fire up those home brew DVR plans again.

Bite my shiny metal ass indeed
User Journal

Journal: Most modded comment ever

Journal by jlechem
I just had to rant/rave/bitch/wonder/whatever for a minute. I don't post a lot to slashdot. I mostly write in my journal and when I see I can make a good comment I add it to the discussion. But I got out of that with a recent post here. I think it's been modded up and down more then any other post I've ever made. Right now its at +1 insightful after a roller coaster ride. Granted it's a bit snidy but mayhaps I was in a snippish mode that day. The wonders of slashdot.
Businesses

Journal: Security Clearance 1

Journal by jlechem
So I'm starting the new job. They want me to get a security clearance. Damn 10 years of my life with people who knew me. I'm only 28 that goes almost back to high school. I don't talk to anyone from back then. Not to mention the bad jobs, unemployment, etc etc. They tell me not to worry, no felonies, or major crimes and you'll be fine. Still has me nervous but all I can do is put the good, the bad, and the ugly in there and hope for the best. Working for a DoD contractor has me thinking twice about this kind of work for the rest of my days. Something can be said for working for MS, Adobe, etc a company with a product. But the money draws does it not. I don't know living in UT I can make the dollars I do in a different style of company. And the benefits are pretty good for a contractor based company.
Television

Journal: Why do I keep watching?

Journal by jlechem
So I'm streaming some family guy via winamp. Why do I keep doing this to myself? I have the futurama ripped to my hard drive. It's like crack, except 10x as worse. It's not even that funny, downright retarded at times. I'm just too damn lazy to find the playlists for other things or perhaps even worse, I would prefer family guy to the sound of silence. God help me if this is the case.
User Journal

Journal: Writing Glut & Marriage

Journal by jlechem
Damn, go a while without writing in your journal and then BAM you have a dozen things to write about. I'm not much of a writer so I find this somewhat suprising. But what I really wanted to shout out about is this Federal Marriage Amendment bullshit. I'm as straight as you can get. I'm married and love to look at beautiful women. However I have no problem with gay people getting married. Why should one class of people be excluded from something that others get? The government should quit spending time pushing this and focus on more important matters. Don't even get me started on the whole writing discrimination into the constitution thing either. I thought we were moving forward as a society towards more egalitatian ideals and freedom for everyone. I guess we've still got a long way to go.
User Journal

Journal: Strange Times Ahead

Journal by jlechem

It seems like always has its twists and turns. This past month has been one of those. A alot of it is of course of my own making. I'm taking a new job with InnovaSystems located in Utah. New jobs are always a hard transition. New people, new places, all that jazz. Also I have finally been able to petition the Grand Lodge of Freemasons as well. If all goes well I will be able to join their society. Next step world domination ;)

User Journal

Journal: New Slash Layout 1

Journal by jlechem

Well today I loged onto slashdot to see the new layout and I can't say I'm impressed. I'm using the new IE 7 and its slow. Slow and ugly. Not a good move for slashdot IMO. They're using CSS which is a good thing but for some reason its fubaring the look and feel of the site. It's almost unusable it's so slow. It never used to be like this. I think they need to do some revamping of the UI and quick. As expexted when I run the site in Firefox it looks great and responds ok. I don't know if the new IE just needs some tweaking or if the site's CSS needs tweaking. Regardless I needed a reason to redownload firefox.

User Journal

Journal: Graduation

Journal by jlechem
Well I finally did it. August 5th 2004 around 9pm I turned in my last code assignment and was finished with my bachelors degree from weber state univeristy. It was a bit of an odd feeling and looking back I really enjoyed it. I learned a lot and met a helluva lot of nice people I loved working with and downing beers with in the offtime. The degree is in the mail as they say and I can't wait to post that fucker on my wall. Now do I want to move onto a masters degree? That I think is still in the works. I'm ready to be done with school for a while and just focus on my job for now.
User Journal

Journal: Graduating this summer

Journal by jlechem

Well this semester is in full swing and all I can think about is graduating this summer. Two more classes and I'm done. A BS CS will be my biggest accomplishment in life. Not saving the world or curing cancer. But I'll take what I can get. Life sucks and then you die. Now I just need to get a job and start writing code for a living.

User Journal

Journal: Projects

Journal by jlechem
Well as it turns out I never got around to making those XML progs that I wanted too. I got involved with school and shit just never panned out. Right now I'm about to get into my summer semester and things are turning out to be very interesting. I have an HTML and MFC/C# class this semester that is going to be alot of fun. One of them is an online class which is always interesting. I ended up making a small tic-tac-toe game using Visual C++ that was alot of fun. Now I am working on a net tools prog that lets users use the trace and ping commands with a GUI interface. We'll see how things work out.
User Journal

Journal: next project

Journal by jlechem
well now that I'm done with the board project I'm moving onto something else. I've had lots of exp. with XML and C++ and really like Microsofts XML parser. What I want to do is make a Java program that scrolls the current slashdot headlines for me. I know I can get the headlines from slashdot in XML but I want to learn how to implement them in a Java program. As I know very little about GUI java things this will be a bit of an undertaking for me. Once this is done I will be re-writing a program I use at work, this will be done in C++.

-jlechem out-

FORTRAN is a good example of a language which is easier to parse using ad hoc techniques. -- D. Gries [What's good about it? Ed.]

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