The Difference Two Years Made – NYT

I am Boggled beyond all imagination where we are today as a country. For the first time in my life I am voting against EVERY incumbent Republican that is up for re-election. The Constitution is MORE than just a piece of paper. I hope you do the same.

The Difference Two Years Made – New York Times:
On Tuesday, when this page runs the list of people it has endorsed for election, we will include no Republican Congressional candidates for the first time in our memory. Although Times editorials tend to agree with Democrats on national policy, we have proudly and consistently endorsed a long line of moderate Republicans, particularly for the House. Our only political loyalty is to making the two-party system as vital and responsible as possible.

That is why things are different this year.

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Declaration of Independence

When was the last time you read The Declaration of Independence?

Declaration of Independence from the National Archives

IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance. He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States: For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people. He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands. He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

The History of the Declaration of Independence

TechCrunch » First Screen Shots of Riya

This EXCITES me. It would be spectacular to take 20 Thousand plus pictures, Tag them AND make them searchable in a matter of hours. These guys are going to make millions.

TechCrunch » First Screen Shots of Riya:

Riya leverages potent facial and text recognition technology with an intelligent interface to help people make sense of the thousands of untitled and untagged photos that are building up on their hard drives (and on the web)…

The process starts with registration and choosing a privacy setting on your pictures. You then download a client application that uploads photos you choose to include in Riya. The actual uploading takes a while – about 4 hours for each GB of photos. Instead of waiting around, Riya will email you when the process is complete.

That’s when the fun starts. In my case about 400 pictures were uploaded. I was presented with a view of facial thumbnails of everyone in my photos. Riya asks that you begin to educate it by telling it who the people are…it then very quickly starts to auto-tag pictures with a surprising level of accuracy. Within moments I had a large percentage of my photos fully tagged with people’s names.

Riya also recognizes text in photos, and lets you select any area of a photo and tag that as well. For instance, you could select just the Eiffel Tower in a photo and tag it as such. Within moments, everything of importance in all of my photos was tagged. And more importantly,
it was searchable.

Thanks to TechCrunch for sharing!

The Uses of Disaster

Interesting essay, especially when you look at the failure of authority in New Orleans.

Luke Mitchell of Harpers says: “We have excerpts from a great essay by Rebecca Solnit up at Harper’s right now, about how authorities deal with disaster, and I am hoping I can get it as well distributed as humanly possible, because it might help to build a counter-narrative to the story that is being constructed this very minute about what is going on in New Orleans. Rebecca’s argument is that disaster always calls authority into question, and when authority is in question, the powers that be will often attempt to create a narrative of human behavior that calls for (surprise) even greater authority.

“It’s a great essay, and the postscript (written yesterday, for the Web only) plugs it into what is going in New Orleans (in terms of mythical race riots and cannibalism) more directly. (Also, if we get lots of traffic, the powers that be here at the magazine will let me do more of these sorts of things.) The amazing thing is, Rebecca wrote the essay before Katrina hit. Indeed, we were printing the piece that Monday. Thanks to Harper’s

The Uses of Disaster

New Orleans and Outpost Crystal

I have been following the LiveJounal Blog of Michael Barnett and his WebCam Feed since Monday. Michael Barnett and the staff of Intercosmos Media Group and directNIC are a web company holed up in their 10th floor Data Center in a 27 story skyscraper since Sunday Morning. They are located in the Central Business District in Downtown New Orleans and are fighting to keep their Data Center live and the 800,000 customer web sites that would go down if they surrendered the position. They are surviving on food that the company brought in for employee lunches before the storm and a diesel generator. You can subscribe to the feed or click on any of the links I added under “Interdictor” in the right column of Boggled. Digital Pictures can be found here and here. It is absolutely amazing to see and read what is going on live in New Orleans. Michael has added more recent picture links here

That being said, please give to the Red Cross or any of the other charities listed here. You can also click on the Red Cross Banner in the sidebar to go to the Red Cross donation pages.

You can also see complete coverage by The Times-Picayune who for the first time in their history are publishing exclusively on the web.

Here are photos being uploaded by people to Flickr and tagged hurricanekatrina and katrina, some are beyond my imagination.

Remember also that the most important thing in life is the health and safety of our loved ones. My heart goes out to all the people of the Gulf Coast that are living, and dying, through this catastrophe as I type this. It’s sobering. Please donate. I did.

When I was 2


John F. Kennedy is Inaugurated as President.

Segregation ends at Atlanta Schools and Lunch Counters.

All Three TV Channels signed OFF the Air at Midnight.

I had to get up to change TV Channels.

I thought the National Anthem was a lullaby.

I had jars of Lightning Bugs in my bedroom.

Electric fans DO lull you to sleep.

Kuwait gains independence from Great Britain.

The Cold War is daily news.

Duck and Cover is taught for survival during Nuclear Attack.

The Bay of Pigs fails miserably.

I got my First Puppy.

Her name was “Poochy”

The Berlin Wall is Built.

America commits to more funds and advisors to South Vietnam.

We still believe what the Media Printed and Reported on TV.

Mike Ditka and Jimmy Johnson are drafted into the NFL.

I was unaware of most of it.

I was Happy.

Life was Perfect.

As it was then, so it is now.

National Western Stock Show and Rodeo

This one is a Colorado Tradition. Tonight we went to the National Western Stock Show and Rodeo. It is one of the few places where you can watch Mutton Busting, which is where children are strapped to farm animals and it’s called entertainment (The announcers words, not mine). Actually it is, especially when they give the 4 and 5 year old kids trophies bigger than they are tall. All of these pictures were shot with my wife’s Canon S400.

Stagecoach, exit stage right.


Westernaires Riding Group


Denver Coliseum


Is it $3.00 or 300 Grams of Fat?


Fried Twinkie with Chocolate Sauce and Powdered Sugar


A 35 Minute drive home took 2 Hours and 45 minutes because of a snowstorm


Goodnight from Denver, Colorado