Showing posts from April, 2009

The Coming Cyber Attack

Most of our attention is probably focused on the H1N1 virus, the economy, our own lives, the lovely or bad weather (depending on where you live), and Miss California. Have you given much thought (or any thought) to what would happen in the US if there was a major cyber attack by some of our enemies?

What if our financial, energy, water, defense, telecommunications, and other systems were invaded by botnets? Sure we have backup systems in most cases, but wouldn't the attackers also attack those? There are some naysayers who think that most terrorists won't waste their time on cyber attacks and prefer attacks directly against humans. It may be true, but is the risk of not securing our technology worth it? Who is to say that only terrorists would engage in these attacks. How about criminals or other other enemies?
As politicians and the military start to think about these problems, they turn to outside security experts. One, who has advised the US military and the US government, is…

Miss Piggy Ill

A spokesperson for Miss Piggy confirmed today that she has tested positive for swine flu. She is accepting flowers and other forms of love at this time, unless you have recently traveled to Mexico.

Swine Flu Protective Mask

Swine flu is airborne, so this mask should help. Order yours today. Oh yeah, lay off the bacon too.

Webby Awards: Vote Now

I have no hope of winning one of these awards, but I do encourage each of you to vote for your favorite websites in Web and Mobile Sites, Interactive Advertising, and Online Film & Video.

The Webbie Awards are important to people who depend on advertising and other revenue sources to fund their free sites. I'm sure you will find some sites that you use now, and you may find some new discoveries.

Check it out at Voting ends on April 30.

Earth Day

Today is officially Earth Day. I believe we are long past the time when we have the luxury of thinking about the Earth on just a single day of the year. Greenhouse gases are changing Earth's climate every instant and each one of us contributes to this change. Please think of things you can do every day to slow, halt, and reverse this process.

"Whatever you do may seem insignificant, but it is most important that you do it." - Gandhi
The five warmest years over last century have likely been: 2005, 1998, 2002, 2003, 2004. The top 10 warmest years have all occurred since 1990.
If every household in the U.S. replaced one light bulb with a CFL, it would prevent enough pollution to equal removing one million cars from the road.
Americans spend more on transportation than they do on any other household expense except housing, and the nation’s poorest families spend more than 40 percent of their take home pay on transportation.
A disproportionate number of toxic waste sites …

Gay Marriage Exposed


Blindness Cure Announced

Here is news of a breakthrough cure for the most common age-related blindness in humans. I believe that this is just the beginning of many more cures and therapies coming out of stem cell research.

Notice that this cure comes out of the UK, where such research was not put on hold for eight years because of blind political ideology (pun intended).
British scientists have developed the world’s first stem cell therapy to cure the most common cause of blindness. Surgeons predict it will become a routine, one-hour procedure that will be generally available in six or seven years’ time.

The treatment involves replacing a layer of degenerated cells with new ones created from embryonic stem cells. It was pioneered by scientists and surgeons from the Institute of Ophthalmology at University College London and Moorfields eye hospital.

This week Pfizer, the world’s largest pharmaceutical research company, will announce its financial backing to bring the therapy to patients. The treatment will tackle …

Funny Sign

This is where all the buttholes in the world should actually live. Maybe they could drive each other crazy.

Join a Tea Bag Party


Desperate Party of No

The Party of No is fairly desperate these days. They find themselves unable to find a vision other than proposing more tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, which helped to get us in the economic mess we face today.

Obama's new tax cut has provided tax relief for about 95% of Americans, yet the Party of No is holding tea bag rallies. Presumably, these rallies are protesting the return to the upper tax rate of just over 39% under Clinton, which was the rate before the Bush tax cut to 35%. The 39% tax rate is still about 10% less than the 50% top rate during most of Reagan's term in office. Where were the tea bag parties then? [Historical US income tax rates]

Obama was elected on the promise to repeal the Bush tax cut. Plain and simple: It will be allowed to expire...the very tax cut that helped to bankrupt our economy. Tea bag rallies just appear desperate.

Additionally, these "nattering nabobs of negativism" throw around the "socialist" word since "liber…

Good Easter Weekend

What a nice Easter weekend I just had! My friends Janie and Darrell have been wanting me to visit their church in Pleasant Hill, TN. This past weekend, it happened, and I had a very good Easter weekend.

The Uplands Retirement Village is a central part of Pleasant Hill. Many of the people who live there are retired UCC clergy and missionaries, so the median age is rather high. However, with all of the activities and intellectual forces there, Uplands is anything but a typical retirement community. This community and the church are very involved in social justice issues. They walk the walk rather than talk the talk.

Since I'm struggling with finances, having received no unemployment benefits in over a month (another post, I promise), I had to depend on the hospitality of my friends and the good people in Pleasant Hill. Such hospitality and friendship are rare, and I was very blessed. I hope to visit people there again. What a special place!

Increasing Support for Same-Sex Marriage

CBS Poll: Americans Divided On Gay Marriage:

On this issue, progress is in baby steps. Same-sex marriage was rarely talked about more than 10-15 years ago. It's going to take a lot of time for people to really consider this as an equal rights issue, but I believe it will happen.
Although six in 10 Americans think some form of legal recognition is appropriate for same-sex couples, only a third of Americans think those couples should be allowed to marry. Another 27 percent of Americans support civil unions for same-sex couples, while 35 percent thinks there should be no legal recognition of same-sex relationships at all. Americans are somewhat more supporting of gay marriage or civil unions than they were in 2004. Then just 22 percent supported gay marriage and 40 percent said there should be no legal recognition of same-sex relationships.

Dirty Tricks

The Party of No is up to dirty tricks and bullying against freshmen House Democrats...and it is scripted. Thanks to Keith Olbermann for exposing this one even though the plan may have fallen on its face. The Republicans still enjoy beltway politics as usual.

Visit for Breaking News, World News, and News about the Economy

Job Search

Whee! If you have been looking for work, you may be seeing what I am. I'm finding fewer jobs listed than I did a month ago. I'm been applying for jobs as creatively as I know how. I'm applying for jobs where writing or good communication skills are a requirement of the position.

I've applied for jobs ranging from entry-level customer service positions up to an executive communication specialist. I find about one to three openings in my field of technical writing each month now. That is well down from about two months ago when I found about one or two jobs each week. I'm in the Atlanta area, so other metro areas may have more opportunities.

Join the Health Care Discussion

I'm passing along this information from an email I received today:
The rising cost of health care is crushing families, business, and government. President Obama is working with Congress to enact urgently needed health reform this year, and every American has a stake in the outcome. On Wednesday, April 8, from 10 am to 12 pm ET, a diverse group of those stakeholders, from businesspeople to insurers to health professionals, will come to the White House to share their views with Counselor to the President and Director of the White House Office of Health Reform Nancy-Ann DeParle.

This Health Care Stakeholder Discussion is part of a continuing series of conversations that began last December, when roughly 30,000 Americans took part in 3,200 Health Care Community Discussions around the country. The stories of Americans across all walks of life will play an important role as the President and Congress work to enact legislation that lowers cost, guarantees that people have a choice of doct…


The cold weather returned to Georgia today. When I left the house to drive to my MD's office this morning, it was actually sleeting. The wind is blowing and it is overcast, which makes it seem colder than it is.

Of course, when things go wrong, they often go wrong in sets of three or more. I woke up Saturday morning to find that the furnace is no longer working. I tried everything recommended by the folks who normally service my furnace, and I was unable to get it to kick on. I checked my filter, and it was dirty, so I think the restricted airflow caused it to shut off. Note to self: Change your filter more often.

It appears it will take a service call, but since I'm unemployed and haven't even received my unemployment benefits for a month (a later post), I can't afford it now. I'm living off of my home equity loan and need to stretch that out until I can start my Social Security in October or find a job, whichever comes first. So, I'll wait until this fall to fi…

Dr. No: The Dirty Money Behind Those Negative Healthcare Ads

I started seeing them on CNN last week. They were ads apparently targeted against providing a real solution to America's health care problem. The ads wanted to twist the issue to be one of patient rights. I couldn't make the connection, since if you don't have insurance, what patient rights might you really have? But I was reminded of the Harry and Louise ads that helped to end support for health care reform when Clinton was President. I planned to write about these new ads, but the project kept being pushed to the bottom of my pile. It took this article in the NY Times to rekindle my interest.

The moneybags behind the ads come from a man whom I dub as "Dr. No." His name is Richard L. Scott and he is no MD. He is just one of those very rich investor types we so love to hate these days. Of course, he has more than just an ideological reason for being against health care reform, he created the largest health care company in the world, Columbia/HCA. Among other thing…

Review: Tell No One

I read Harlan Coben's riveting novel, Tell No One, a few years ago. It was a real page-turner for me. While I think the novel is more suspenseful and has a more complex plot, the movie has enough suspense to keep you on the edge of your seat, uh couch. It was just released on DVD and I watched it today.

The novel is set in the US, but the French film is set in France. The change doesn't negatively affect the plot, but it does mean the movie has English subtitles, which did negatively affect me. Sometimes the subtitles were just too fast, and I had to pause and reverse the DVD to see a scene again.

The cast is little known outside the US, but the acting is good quality. I recommend this film to anyone who loves suspense films with both action and a love interest plus the bonus of a surprise ending. It is two hours long if you don't watch the outtakes too. I did. Grab the popcorn and "Mash Play, Glenn." Sorry, that is an inside joke for a few special friends. ;-)

My Professional Website

Since I gave this blog a facelift recently, I decided to do the same on my professional website. See for yourself at There is some similarity since I used the same photo in the header.