Of Course Lodging Taxes are Unfair

The head of the state's department of tourism is concerned that the
Cullman City Council is considering funding expansion of a local park
by levying a 3 percent lodging tax on travelers -- 99 percent of whom
will never use those facilities. - Cullman Times

But, of course a lodging tax is unfair! Who better to tax than people who have no representation? The whole idea of a lodging tax, and the reason it's already higher than any tax on the local citizenry, is that it's a tax on people that have no say. It is not a tax designed to help fund improvements in the travel industry or to fulfill any other lofty public service ideal. Lodging taxes aren't about being fair, they are about raking in money.

Microsoft Asks "Are You Tired of Spending Time Trying to Protect and Maintain Your Computer?"

From the people that brought you raw sockets, the drm/hackable media player, the world's most infected mail clients, and wide open default security settings, comes OneCare, a solution to all your safety and backup Windows needs.

Antivirus Program Crashed PC

"I'm not happy about losing three days work and having to do a full
rebuild but am somewhat amused by the irony. As a long-term Mac user
and previous net admin, who can't remember seeing a malicious Apple
virus/Trojan ever it seems only right that I should be exposed to this
trauma as a result of poorly written [anti-]Virus software." - James Hackett quoted on The Register

Supersize Me

Watching Supersize Me, it doesn't take long to recognize the tofu eaters' point of view. However, despite the obviously anti-corporate, anti-fast food bias of the filmmaker and his cliche, the message is strong. Fat is bad. His McDonald's diet was unhealthy. And, we Americans are getting fatter and more unhealthy daily in large part to our own Mcdiets.

Wealth Gap in Communist China?

I still don't understand why communist states have money. If you get a paycheck or have to sell your goods to collect money so you can buy food for your family, isn't that basically capitalism?

The wealth gap is certainly unfair! The price of chemical fertiliser is increasing but the price at which we can sell grain has dropped. - Mi Yushan quoted in BBC News

Lusting After Hong Kong Tech

When I went to Guatemala in 99' it ruined my perception of technology. I walked in an internet cafe to send my wife an email, and noticed a Cisco 2501 on the wall. I commented to the owner that I had the exact same router at my office. She told me she was connected through fiber optic. It once took me four months to get a single PRI (twisted pair T1) installed at my office in Cullman, AL and she had fiberoptic internet in the third world!

Bush: Ramp Up The Nukes, Build More Refineries

President Bush has an energy policy: use more, take more.

President Bush is offering to make closed military bases available for new oil refineries and will ask Congress to provide a "risk insurance" to the nuclear industry against regulatory delays to spur construction of new nuclear power plants, senior administration officials said Tuesday. - AP

Biodiesel Aid

Biodiesel may well be the next huge subsidy for big farmers, but it may also be a great alternative (to petrolium) fuel source. I like down and dirty, simple fuel solutions. There seems to be a big push for hydrogen and/or fuel cell vehicles. But, biodiesel may work without requiring us to build hundreds of nuclear power plants or drive unsafe automobiles. Though hydrogen sounds neofantastic, it's real life application has roots in real life physics, where it takes several generations of lossy energy production to reach the end-user's automobile. Biodiesel, on the other hand, works in old fashioned diesel engines that are available today.