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Journal Journal: End racism on Slashdot 15

I would urge people to join me in calling for an end to openly racist comments on /. directed against developing nations, principally India, or at least for them to be modded 'Troll.'

Every time a story is posted on /. concerning a technical development in India, there are usually a small number of comments about the technical merits of the article, but a huge wave of blatent racist comments that poke fun at Indian cinema, food, the accent, and just about everything short of the colour of their skin. It's as if the concept of a non-white person achieving anything complex is a source of amusement. What alarms me even more is the fact that these comments receive 'Funny' mods and are not treated as the trolls they are.

I recently got into a flame war with one of these racists who openly justified his racism because of outsourcing. His view was that Indians deserve to be the butt of racist jokes because they are taking jobs from good white Americans. The debate about outsourcing is not one I'm going to get into here, but whether you agree or with outsourcing or not, there can be no justification for racism.

Anyone with mod points, use them wisely. Use them to fight racism, not promote it. It is totally unacceptable and we must point it out as such whenever it shows up. /.ers must be made aware of what they are doing so that they can change their behaviour.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Question for gun advocates 31

Carrying guns is a fundamental right. Right? And guns make people safer. Right? Well if we want our airlines to be safe from terrorist hijackings and suchlike, would you be in favour of allowing passengers to carry guns onto planes? After all, if guns make people safer on the ground, why would it be any different in the air? Discuss.
United States

Journal Journal: Atlantic Mega-Tusnami to Hit North America

Scientists at the Benfield Hazard Research Center have determined that a Mega-tsunami will hit the coast of North America when the Cumbre Vieja Volcano and part of the Island of La Palma in the Canary Islands collapse into the sea. The wave hitting North America will be up to 50 meters (164 feet) high and surge up to 20km (12.4 miles) inland while Brazil will see 40 meter waves with up to 100 meter waves on the West Saharan shore (ILM Rendition). Insurance losses are estimated to be in the multi-trillions, yet the landslide has been completely unmonitored since 1997. The BBC has an FAQ on the Mega-tsunami.

[edit: rejected by Slashdot 2004-12-28 17:22:50]
User Journal

Journal Journal: Time for EU to unite against US threat

While the Ohio poll turns into a latter-day Florida and the Kerry camp rightly hangs in there until all the votes are counted, it is not looking good for the Democrats. It looks like we are in for another four years of marching towards terminal decline in America. Here is what I see in store:
  1. At least one more war against a state that the evangelical Christian ideologues of the far right take a dislike to - probably Iran despite the democracy there and despite the strong movement in favour of reform
  2. Total carnage in the Middle East as the misguided support for Israel's illegal occupation of Palestine continues
  3. At least one more small country's democratic government deposed in favour of a more neo-conservative-friendly puppet as happened in Haiti
  4. Another attempt to depose the democratically elected president of Venezuala, Hugo Chavez. Mr Chavez survived one coup-attempt already (and there is plenty of evidence of CIA involvement in that one) and will doubtless be prepared for a second one. The Bush administration has made no secret of the fact that they do not recognise his mandate. A White House spokesman is quoted as saying that "a majority of voters" did not confer "legitimacy" on the Venezualan government. But then they would know after having lost the popular vote in 2000. Chavez is a clever guy though, and it'll be interesting to see if he can thwart any schemes to unseat him.
  5. More of the Reverse Robin Hood Syndrome, i.e. robbing from the poor and giving to the rich. Stand by for more tax cuts for billionaires while schools close left right and centre for lack of funds. In my area, three schools are closing next year in San Jose, CA. They aren't the first, and won't be the last. Cities all over America are being starved of funds for basic maintenance of infrastructure and public works projects.
  6. More incompetent handling of the war on terror. Bush let Osama Bin Ladin slip through his fingers at Tora Bora by diverting troops to his misguided adventure in Iraq. He's still out there, still influential, and still agitating for more death and destruction on US soil.
  7. Skyrocketing debt. The last time I looked at the Federal budget deficit it was around $450 bn, an all time record. Bush, who in his first state of the union address complained about government spending too much, has become the biggest spending US president EVER. He has run up more debt than the previous six presidents combined.
  8. Lack of checks or balances. With Republicans dominating the Senate, the House of Representatives, the White House, and conservative judges holding sway in the Supreme Court, there is no stopping the right-wing ideologues from doing whatever they like.
  9. Marginalisation of international institutions, contempt for treaties, and the breakdown of international law as we know it.

America now looks to be out of control, self-centred, and heading for a collision course with the rest of the world in its quest for global domination. There has never been a time when a need to counterbalance this threat has been so great.

Europe has already shown its ability to force the hand of the US on matter such as international trade, when George Bush was forced to rescind his disgraceful and illegal tarrifs on steel imports under threat of retailiatory measures that would have been imposed by the EU and designed to hurt him in key electoral states. It was a rare moment of US humility, but the sort of thing that we need to see a lot more of.

Those who are looking for a way to inspire the people of Europe into getting enthused about the benefits of greater European unity now have the perfect opportunity. A threat is there, Europe can unite against it. For the sake of the rest of the world, we must.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Service record of Repubs & Dems

  • Richard Gephardt: Air National Guard, 1965-71.
  • David Bonior: Staff Sgt., Air Force 1968-72.
  • Tom Daschle: 1st Lt., Air Force SAC 1969-72.
  • Al Gore: enlisted Aug. 1969; sent to Vietnam Jan. 1971 as an army journalist in 20th Engineer Brigade.
  • Bob Kerrey: Lt. j.g. Navy 1966-69; Medal of Honor, Vietnam.
  • Daniel Inouye: Army 1943-'47; Medal of Honor, WWII.
  • John Kerry: Lt., Navy 1966-70; Silver Star, Bronze Star with Combat V Purple Hearts.
  • John Edwards: did not serve.
  • Charles Rangel: Staff Sgt., Army 1948-52; Bronze Star, Korea.
  • Max Cleland: Captain, Army 1965-68; Silver Star & Bronze Star, Vietnam.
  • Ted Kennedy: Army, 1951-1953.
  • Tom Harkin: Lt., Navy, 1962-67; Naval Reserve, 1968-74.
  • Jack Reed: Army Ranger, 1971-1979; Captain, Army Reserve 1979-91.
  • Fritz Hollings: Army officer in WWII, receiving the Bronze Star and seven campaign ribbons.
  • Leonard Boswell: Lt. Col., Army 1956-76; Vietnam, DFCs, Bronze Stars, and Soldier's Medal.
  • Pete Peterson: Air Force Captain, POW. Purple Heart, Silver Star and Legion of Merit.
  • Mike Thompson: Staff sergeant, 173rd Airborne, Purple Heart.
  • Bill McBride: Candidate for Fla. Governor. Marine in Vietnam; Bronze Star with Combat V.
  • Gray Davis: Army Captain in Vietnam, Bronze Star.
  • Pete Stark: Air Force 1955-57
  • Chuck Robb: Vietnam
  • Howell Heflin: Silver Star
  • George McGovern: Silver Star & DFC during WWII.
  • Bill Clinton: Did not serve. Student deferments. Entered draft but received 311.
  • Jimmy Carter: Seven years in the Navy.
  • Walter Mondale: Army 1951-1953
  • John Glenn: WWII and Korea; six DFCs and Air Medal with 18 Clusters.
  • Tom Lantos: Served in Hungarian underground in WWII. Saved by Raoul Wallenberg.
  • Wesley Clark: U.S. Army, 1966-2000, West Point, Vietnam, Purple Heart, Silver Star.'Retired 4-star general.
  • John Dingell: WWII vet
  • John Conyers: Army 1950-57, Korea


  • Dennis Hastert: did not serve.
  • Tom Delay: did not serve.
  • Roy Blunt: House Majority Whip did not serve.
  • Bill Frist: did not serve.
  • Rudy Giuliani: did not serve.
  • George Pataki: did not serve.
  • Mitch McConnell: did not serve.
  • Rick Santorum: did not serve.
  • Trent Lott: did not serve.
  • Dick Cheney: did not serve. Several deferments, the last by marriage.
  • John Ashcroft: did not serve. Seven deferments to teach business.
  • Jeb Bush: did not serve.
  • Karl Rove: did not serve.
  • Saxby Chambliss: did not serve. "Bad knee." The man who attacked Max Cleland's patriotism.
  • Paul Wolfowitz: did not serve.
  • Vin Weber: did not serve.
  • Richard Perle: did not serve.
  • Douglas Feith: did not serve.
  • Eliot Abrams: did not serve.
  • Richard Shelby: did not serve.
  • Jon Kyl: did not serve.
  • Tim Hutchison: did not serve.
  • Christopher Cox: did not serve.
  • Newt Gingrich: did not serve.
  • Don Rumsfeld: served in peacetime Navy (1954-57) as aviator and flight instructor.
  • George W. Bush: six-year Nat'l Guard commitment (incomplete).
  • Ronald Reagan: due to poor eyesight, served in a non-combat role making movies.
  • Gerald Ford: Navy, WWII
  • Phil Gramm: did not serve.
  • John McCain: Silver Star, Bronze Star, Legion of Merit, Purple Heart and Distinguished Flying Cross.
  • Bob Dole: an honorable veteran.
  • Chuck Hagel: two Purple Hearts and a Bronze Star, Vietnam.
  • Jeff Sessions: Army Reserves, 1973-1986
  • JC Watts: did not serve.
  • Lindsey Graham: National Guard lawyer.
  • G.H.W. Bush: Pilot in WWII. Shot down by the Japanese.
  • Tom Ridge: Bronze Star for Valor in Vietnam.


  • Antonin Scalia: did not serve.
  • Clarence Thomas: did not serve
  • Sean Hannity: did not serve.
  • Rush Limbaugh: did not serve (4-F with a 'pilonidal cyst.')
  • Bill O'Reilly: did not serve.
  • Michael Savage: did not serve.
  • George Will: did not serve.
  • Chris Matthews: did not serve.
  • Paul Gigot: did not serve.
  • Bill Bennett: did not serve.
  • Pat Buchanan: did not serve.
  • Bill Kristol: did not serve.
  • Kenneth Starr: did not serve.
  • Michael Medved: did not serve.
User Journal

Journal Journal: Bush the Flip-Flopper 2

The next time someone criticizes John Kerry for being a flip-flopper remind them:

Bush was against campaign finance reform; now he's for it.

Bush was against a Homeland Security Department; now he's for it.

Bush was against a 9/11 commission; now he's for it.

Bush was against an Iraq WMD investigation; now he's for it.

Bush was against nation building; now he's for it.

Bush was against deficits; now he's for them.

Bush was for free trade; then he was for tariffs on steel, and now he's against them again.

Bush was against the U.S. taking a role in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict; now he pushes for a "road map" and a Palestinian State.

Bush was for states' rights to decide on gay marriage; now he is for changing the Constitution to outlaw gay marriage.

Bush said he would provide money for first responders (fire, police, emergency); then he doesn't.

Bush said that "help is on the way" to the military; then he cuts their benefits and health care.

Bush claimed to be in favor of environmental protection; then he secretly approved oil drilling on Padre Island in Texas and other places and took many more anti-environmental actions.

Bush said he is the "education president;" then he refused to fully fund key education programs and rarely does his homework, such as read position papers so he will be more knowledgeable on issues.

Bush said that him being governor of Texas for six years was enough political experience to be president of the U.S.; then he criticized Sen. John Edwards for not having enough experience after Edwards had served six years in the U.S. Senate.

During the 2000 campaign, Bush said there were too many lawsuits being filed; then during the Florida recount, he was the first to file a lawsuit to stop the legal counting of votes after Gore took advantage of Florida law to ask for a recount.

On Nov. 7, 2000, the Bush campaign supported Florida county officials drawing up new copies of some 10,000 spoiled absentee votes in 26 Republican-leaning counties that the machines did not read and marking them for the candidates when they showed "clear intent;" they opposed doing the same thing after Nov. 7 when Gore asked for such recounts. Bush dominated absentee balloting in Florida by a two-to-one margin.

Bush said during the 2000 campaign that he did not have a "litmus test" for judges he appointed to be against abortion; then he mostly appointed judges who were against abortion.

In the early 1990s, Bush led a campaign to raise taxes in Arlington, Texas, to build a new baseball stadium for the team he partly owned; he later criticized politicians for supporting tax increases - after he got rich by selling the team with the new stadium to a wealthy campaign contributor.

Bush opposed the U.S. negotiating with North Korea; now he supports it.

Bush went to the racist and segregationist Bob Jones University in South Carolina; then he said he shouldn't have.

Bush said he would demand a U.N. Security Council vote on whether to sanction military action against Iraq; later Bush announced he would not call for a vote.

Bush first said the "mission accomplished" Iraqi banner was put up by the sailors; he later admitted it was done by his advance team.

Bush was for fingerprinting and photographing Mexicans who enter the U.S.; after meeting with Mexican President Fox, he decided against it.

Bush was opposed to Rice testifying in front of the 9/11 commission citing "separation of powers;" then he was for it.

Bush was against Ba'ath party members holding office or government jobs in Iraq; now he's for it.

Bush said we must not appease terrorists; then he lifted trade sanctions on admitted terrorist Mohammar Quaddafi and Pakistan, which pardoned its official who sold nuclear secrets to Iran, Libya, and North Korea.

Bush said he would wait until after the Nov. election to ask for more money for the war effort; then he decided he needed it before the election, after all.

Bush said, "Leaving Iraq prematurely would only embolden the terrorists and increase the danger to America." His administration now says that U.S. troops will pull out of Iraq when the new provisional authority asks. Then he said they'll stay "as long as needed" again. Now he's saying that the Iraqis can ask the troops to leave, and they will. Or is he?

The Bush administration officials said that the Geneva Conventions don't apply to "enemy combatants." Now they claims they do.

Bush officials said before the Iraq invasion that Iraq posed an "imminent threat" to U.S. security and that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and even nuclear weapons; after the invasion, they denied saying the word "imminent" and saying that Iraq had WMDs and nuclear weapons, even though they were caught on tape making such statements.

"The most important thing is for us to find Osama Bin Laden. It is our number one priority and we will not rest until we find him." - George W. Bush, Sept. 13, 2001

"I don't know where he is. I have no idea, and I really don't care. It's not that important. It's not our priority." - George W. Bush, March 13, 2002

Are you getting tired of this? Well, some in the American military are getting tired of this, too: "The (Bush) administration has an overly simplistic view of how and when to use our military. By not bringing in our friends and allies, they have created a mess in Iraq and are crippling our forces around the world." -Retired Admiral William Crowe, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs under Ronald Reagan


User Journal

Journal Journal: A vote for Nader is a vote for Bush 35

We don't have the luxury of Single Transferable Voting in the US, so there is no room for third parties. And even if we did, it would be irrelevant to the Presidential election because there is only one position up for grabs. So let's not kid ourselves, there may have been some similarities between the Democrats and Republicans in years gone by but we simply cannot allow the country to fall under another four years of fascist rule by this brain-dead puppet. There is no room for a third party in this election, especially when the top priority has to be making sure that all liberals, progressives, and reasonably sane people cast their votes to the candidate most likely to beat Bush. Don't throw away your vote to Nader. After all the thievery in Florida last time and the indications that this election will be every bit as close, only a handful of liberals voting for Nader could be enough to give us another four years of Bush. PLEASE don't do it!!!
User Journal

Journal Journal: Anti-US / Anti-other posts 6

Scenario 1. A post appears that pokes fun at the French, or the Germans, or the Brits, or any other nationality. Hell, it might even make light of some terrorist atrocity commited in any of those countries. How does it get modded? 'Funny.'

Scenario 2. A post appears that pokes fun at the USA or maybe just the US government (which, it should be noted, is a very different thing from the USA itself). How does it get modded? 'Flamebait.'

I see these double standards all the time on /.

Well I am going on a mission to metamod these bozos as 'unfair' until the /. crew learns that if you can't take it, you shouldn't give it. Who's with me?

User Journal

Journal Journal: Easy come, easy go

If you haven't figured out by now I'm pretty fickle with my friends and foes list. Here's my very strange comment options (at the moment):

Threshold: 1
Highlight Threshold: 1
Reason Modifier:
Insightful: -1
Interesting: -1
Funny: -2
Informative: -1
Offtopic: -5
Flamebait: -6
Troll: -6
Redundant: -2
Friend: +2
Fan: 0
Foe: 3
Freak: 0
Friends of Friends: +1
Foes of Friends: -1
Anonymous Modifier: -1
Karma Bonus: 0
Subscriber Bonus: -2
New User Modifier: percentage: 2% modifier: -1
Long Comment Bonus: modifier: -1

User Journal

Journal Journal: Hurling - The fastest field game in the world

A player must be able to sprint like a 100 metres champion, catch a high-flying ball (as hard as a baseball) in his weak hand with no mitt to help him, twist and turn like a basketball player, avoid being shoulder-charged into the ground, and be able to swing his stick while running to hit the ball in mid-air with a forehanded or backhanded swing, and in both cases with pinpiont accuracy. He must be able to hit the ball on the ground like a field hockey player, scoop the ball up off the ground with his stick to get it into his hand, and if he wants to take more than three steps with the ball in his posession, he must balance it on the end of his stick. The solid wood sticks swing at head-height, padding is non-existent, helmets are optional.

Am I describing some strange version of a game of accelerated, suicidal, ariel field hockey? No. This is Hurling, Ireland's national game and the fastest game on grass, period.

It is a two thousand year-old sport that has been played in Ireland in one form or another since pre-christian times. It originated as a way of training warriors for battle, and this heritage is reflected in the almost militaristic pageantry of the All-Ireland championships and the severe intensity at which the sport is played. The speed is breathtaking, and the violence is a little too much for some, but the skills involved in controling the ball make it an absolute spectacle to watch.

For a visual description go Here.

For a more detailed history go Here.

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