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Whiskey-Tango-Foxtrot

I hate the Lakers.
I hate the Lakers.
I hate the Lakers.
I hate the Lakers.
I hate the Lakers.
I hate the Lakers.

“One lucky shot deserves another, my butt – Duncan is excellent, Fisher is a benchwarmer. Watch those plays again – Duncan knows what he has to do and does it in the face of adversity – competitive excellence, not luck. Fisher wasn’t supposed to get the ball and just throws it up – luck, not competitive excellence. In my opinion. Thank you, now on to game 6.

Finally acknoledged!

From myuw.washington.edu:

Application Status

Thank you for applying for admission to the University of Washington!
We received your application for admission as a Transfer student to the University of Washington for autumn quarter 2004 on February 17, 2004.

The status of your application was last updated on May 12, 2004.

Your application was given an initial review, and a final admission decision is pending. If further information is required, we will contact you by mail.

Applicants are notified beginning April through July, as soon as an admission decision can be made. Autumn quarter 2004 begins September 29, 2004.

This is the first change I’ve seen since they reported recieving my transcripts almost two months ago. Its good to see life in the machine, it means the wait will be over soon. I think I’ll get in, but there’s nothing quite like confirmation to warm the soul and strengthen the ego (as if I need more of that!)

In other news, I got my Diff.Eq. tst back today. A 40 was an A and I got a 44.4, so I figure thats pretty good. I’m having more dust problems in photography, and since I’m working most days of the week, I hardly have time to really make prints except when I’m rushed. Finally, work is going well, except for the recent dead head disk drive controller, SmarTeam insanity, and self-extracting installs gone awry. Its a pretty good life.

Ben and I have selected movies from the Seattle International Film Festival we’d like to see. A lot of them sound pretty cool. The next step is actually buying them. Unfortunately, due to schedules and movie selections, only one of my selections coincides with one of Dan’s. If we work things right, we may be able to bring that up to two. We shall see. $45 for a six pack, two between us. Anyone who wants to see the director’s cut of Donnie Darko, contact me.

Encrypted Chat For h4x0rZ

Bob, of Colorless Green Ideas came up with the idea of using SSH along with ytalk as a method of secure chatting. We are using the system right now and it works very well. I suggest it to anyone who wants to carry on questionable, anti-government, or otherwise sketchy conversations.

If you are someone who wants to participate, IM me (AIM screenname is RyanMcE), and I can set you up an accoutn on silverfir.net. then all you have to do is download PuTTY, ssh into silverfir.net, and type ychat . I’m Ryan, btw. Type w to find out whos currenlty logged on.

Have fun!

Abortion

I watched a video on John Kerry’s campaign website that showed the senator at a “women’s rights” rally getting endorsed by various groups because he has a “pro-family-planning” voting record and would support a woman’s right to “choose.”

And it made me sick to my stomach, really. What is so sick about it is that all of these people – mostly the fairer sex – were rallying behind abortion as if it were a good thing to have around. I can acknowledge that there are arguments that abortion appears to be, from some perspectives, a better option than going through with birth, even if I don’t agree with such arguments.

But why do all these people gather around and act as if we want more people to have more abortions, as if abortions are good and wonderful and help us all live better lives. Maybe we should force everyone to have at least one abortion, so they can experience the positive results of that “right.”

Then the speakers at the rally go on quote meaningless statistics, like that 87% of counties don’t even have abortion clinics. Oh the horror! Well, did you ever stop to think that maybe 87% of counties don’t have much demand for abortions? So maybe we should use tax dollars to pay for abortion clinics to go into those 87% of counties so that even more people can be coerced into having abortions by ativist “family planners.”

I do believe that it is true that some of the sentiment that “abortion is good” among pro-choice activists is really just a knee-jerk reaction against the strong pro-life sentiment that “abortion is bad.” I also believe that if the pro-life crowd were to focus more on making abortions less needed than on making abortions illegal (which won’t solve the problem), then more babies would be born than are today, and, just maybe, some of the “abortion is good” sentiment would go away as well.

So, clearly, I do not think abortion is good, nor do I think it should be made illegal at the national level. On the other hand, the federal government most certainly should not fund any group that condones or encourages abortion either – I think the so called “gag rule” is a good compromise between funding “planned parenthood” type groups and funding abortion. However, the real solution is to stop public money from going to these organizations at all.

Just because I would not support federal legislation outlawing abortion doersn’t mean that support it. My stance against such federal legislation is a result of my strong views on liberty and the need for as few laws as possible to preserve liberty. I think, in fact, that abortion is akin to murder, and that the “choice” argument is fatally flawed. Let me explain:

My stance that abortion is akin to murder stems from my understanding of biology as opposed to some religious notion of life. An egg in a woman is not unique in the world – it is wholy derived from the woman, and as such, I would consider it a part of her body. Let her do with it what she will. The same goes for a man and his sperm. However, after fertilization, the zygote is no longer a simple combination of the man and the woman. Due to the process called crossover, the DNA of the zygote is unique in all the world. This is what defines a new individual – we have what is indeed a unique human being. To snuff this indivual out on purpose seems little different to me than to snuff out any unique person’s life on purpose.

In fact, fertilization is the single place where an event occurs that causes a distinct change – after that its all just one continuous process. I do not understand how passing through an orfice in birth suddenly makes someone a person that can’t be snuffed out legally (except in the case of partial birth abortions, which somehow are different, I suppose because the baby has a vacuum in the brain). While birth is a significant event, there is no justifiable reason to make this the boundary any more than, say, teething, or sexual maturity. Maybe we should let mothers kill their children until they start noctural emissions or ovulation. Or maybe menopause and middle age is a better indicator. At least then kids might behave…

Now, onto the argument that this is about a woman’s reproductive right to choose. I’m sorry, but the reproductive choice was made when the woman choose to have sex. After the sex comes reproductive responsibility, namely carrying any potential product of the sex to term and ensuring that the potential child is cared for and nurtured into a productive adult. The man shares in this responsibilty, have no doubt, since he also made the choice. I am of course aware that this doesn’t not account for sex that the woman does not choose to have – namely in cases of rape. I think reasonable people could disagree on this topic. I personally lean towards killing the rapist, not the baby.

As for Roe v. Wade, it is fairly clear to me that the ruling was not legally justified, and is probally the single best example of the damage activist judges with radical agendas can do in this our system of common law and judicial review, an extremely flawed paradigm for a judicial system.

Well, thats all for now. I’ll get off the soapbox for just a while now.

Meh

The power went out at the house today so I had the pleasure of restarting silverfir.net again. Hey, that�s a double repetition (kinda like a double negative, but with doing something again instead… yeah�)

The day went fairly smoothly otherwise. I got up early to go to kinkos to make transparencies out of some prints I have, then I went to BCC and started doing my cyanotypes. After math and more cyanotypes, I went to work, and then I was off to Shai�s 21st birthday party. That went till 10, and then I came back here where I got a new Belkin 802.11g wireless Ethernet bridge working, and gave the wet11 to my brother. The speed should make file transfers from my laptop to the desktop without connecting in cat 5 more manageable.

Sunday Sunny Sunday

Today:
1. Woke Up
2. Ate breakfast (Golean Crunch! with 2% milk)
3. Blogged (last entry)
4. Organized files on hard drive while downloading animatrix videos and checking TV listings
5. Watched animatrix videos
6. Folded laundry while waiting for the Spurs vs Lakers game to start
7. Ate lunch
8. (now) Watching Spurs vs. Lakers
9. (next) Wash dishes, run dishwasher
10. (nexter) Vacuum main floor
11. (nextest?) read Diff. Eq. Book, do some Diff. Eq. homework

Not So Much

Occasionally, I run into a blog like Ludicrous Speed!. I learned about this particular one from Bobby after we talked about how bad the new trailer made �I Robot� look. Basically, they have taken Asimov�s classic robotics series and turned it into a high-budget on everything except faithfulness to the original story tion knock off. Turns out that it is very well stated on the particular blog, here.

Just like Bernie�s Site, this is another one where the layout is impressive and the commentary seems sculpted to perfection. So, since I tend to give up on ventures in which I don�t excel (an unfortunate consequence of the way I am), why do I continue to plug away at this blog when clearly I�m not excelling, or een meeting the standard for goodness? Heck, that isn�t even a good word!

The reason for my persistence is that this isn�t about you guys (sorry!). Its about e and needing to say things. And even though I admittedly do edit it for content (not-so-sorry!) its one of the most candid windows to my life that anyone has. An d that does something good for me. And as strangely wonderful that it is that a lot of my friends read this, and that even people I don�t know read it (thanks Bernie!) I�m pretty sure it will continue to lean much more towards a stream-of-consciousness style than trying to present any particularly useful or thoughtful information (although occasionally you may see something useful, because I happened to be thinking about it at the time).

I actaully wrote this several hours earlier today, but somehow it didn’t get posted.