Monday, October 25, 2004

Camper Van Beethoven Album, Tour

One of the finest bands ever, Camper Van Beethoven, is on tour. They also have a new album called New Roman Times. I would encourage everybody to check out both.

I had a chance to catch Camper live recently and as usual with David Lowery bands - like Cracker - they didn't disappoint. Always generous and always entertaining, Camper Van Beethoven and Cracker have maintained loyal fans like me for nearly 20 years now. That's no small task.

Check out Camper on tour now!

Friday, October 22, 2004

When you can't run on results and policy...

...run on the murder of 3000 Americans and keep scaring the shit out them.

Something to Consider this Novermber 2nd

Markets have performed better when a Democrat is in the White House. I know my portfolio could really use it!

Thursday, October 21, 2004

Why Democracy Sucks

Here is an email going around Mrs. Ober's place of work:

Subject: Military Point of View
Date: Wed, 13 Oct 2004 22:26:32 +0400
> >
> >I see every e-mail that is sent to me and try to read each one.
> >I see every news broadcast either in text or over sat. TV.
> >I am forced to read article after article on current events for both the US and Afghanistan.
> >I work with a diverse crowd of both highly educated and barely educated individuals.
> >I get to see first hand what war can be and what it could be.
> >I have to study all the events of both Iraq and Afghanistan.
> >I also see information that you will never see or hear.
> >I have had to guard CNN reporters and FOX news reporters.
> >I have had to read the list of casualties to find if one of my friends from BASIC was on it... he was.
> >
> >So if you really want to know the truth before the news puts a spin on it here it is.
> >
> >Afghanistan is a war that is almost over. We have not only killed more Al-Quiada (Taliban is a term that describes a government party not a terrorist organization) than they can train, we have also inspired the locals to be brave and turn in terrorists in record numbers. The elections happened and the best they could do to disrupt it was lop some rockets at us and of course none of them did anything. War lords are being replaced because thier troops are switching sides because the real army actually pays them. Soon (3years) this country will be able to stand on its feet which is more than it has been able to do in decades.
> >
> >Iraq:
> >We are not winning the war in Iraq. The people of Iraq see an opportunity to become whatever they want and most of them don't want to be another US. The terrorists there have both weapons and education. The attacks that occur in Iraq are far more effective than those used in Afghanistan. With the failure of our Government to produce evidence that we should be there the troops no longer even have moral. Soldiers are going back again to a country that is more dangerous than the one the originally invaded. Saying that we freed the people of Iraq is not true. We invaded Iraq for 3 main reasons:
> >1: We needed a large Port and Airbase to act as a Forward Operating Base(FOB) for our future invasions of both Iran and Syria.
> >2: Bush's friends suddenly got billion dollar contracts before the invasion was successful with out the usual bidding. The aging equiptment in our army suddenly got upgrades that once again cost billions of dollars.
> >3: With Afghanistan a now stable country under the close supervision of the coalition terrorist would need an unstable country to operate out of. Iraq was very unstable and had the capability to both produce and use WMD so it was a good choice for a new home. Don't believe that one? Zarqarwi used to live in Afghanistan.
> >So did Hussien have WMD? No. Does that matter? No. Could he have started producing WMD at his own free will? Yes. Could he have sold any WMD he had to other terrorist states to fund the gorilla warefare that is currently going on? 90% sure thats what happened.
> >
> >What will happen if Kerry is elected..
> >US soldiers will be forced to fight under UN command= a lot of dead soldiers who don't even get to wear thier country's flag
> >Deployment lengths will double because he will not expand the force.
> >Intelligence funding will be halfed= So many dead soldiers it will break America
> >The pulling of troops from Afghanistan to fight in Iraq= Afghanistan will fail
> >
> >Kerry is not a man. He fought a hard war in asia and clearly didn't learn a god damned thing. Bush is not perfect and I personally don't like the decisions he has made but if you vote Kerry you will be killing soldiers. I know, I'm here, I see the shit everyday. If you think Voting Kerry into office will bring us home faster you are wrong. Vote in Kerry and you just insured another tour for me in hell.

Hockey Season Is Upon Us All!

Despite the fact that the NHL has decided not to play this season, the rest of us that love hockey are gearing up for another great season. This season is sure to feature our team of crafty Jewish skaters taking on the best and worst gentiles around.

Having spent the summer month in the South playing against hill billies (hill "williams?") I have to admit that I'm a little concerned about the quality-of-opponent issue. Coming back up North and playing in pick-up games has been somewhat of a rude awakening.

Finally, a few pieces of advice. Praying for a victory like Steve McNair won't help the cause. Of course, this proves that G_d doesn't love Christians or doesn't concern himself with wins and loses. I'm not sure which one it is but either Jesus failed his followers when Muhammed Ali boxed and Sandy Koufax pitched or people like McNair are just stupid.

At the end of the day though, Ober is going to be messing up anyone that dares to cross our blue line.

Another Hebrew defenseman. Coincedence or providence?

Not Yet You're Not!

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Kerry's Speech Before Congress, 1971

Either listen and read this or shut the fuck up about John Kerry. I've about had my fill of all this "he said all veterans were war criminals" bullshit. So clean the shit out of your ears and get your facts straight.

(My anger comes from an undecided voter I encountered in the wild today.)


They told stories that, at times, they had personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Ghengis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam...

Notice what he said there? He said "They told stories...." But that sure isn't the way it gets reported does it? John O'Neil and the Bush/Cheney hatchet team will have you believe that John Kerry personally accused those men of committing those crimes. The facts don't match that rhetoric do they? But then Bush and Cheney are always at odds with the facts.


We are here to ask, and we are here to ask vehemently, where are the leaders of our country? Where is the leadership? We're here to ask where are McNamara, Rostow, Bundy, Gilpatrick, and so many others? Where are they now that we, the men they sent off to war, have returned? These are the commanders who have deserted their troops. And there is no more serious crime in the laws of war. The Army says they never leave their wounded. The Marines say they never even leave their dead. These men have left all the casualties and retreated behind a pious shield of public rectitude. They've left the real stuff of their reputations bleaching behind them in the sun in this country

Try listening to 29 minutes into the tape. Kerry talks about going to Paris and meeting with the peace delegates. Does this sound like what has been reported in the press?

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Stewart on Crossfire

I wouldn't be doing my job as a blogger and an American if I didn't link to Jon Stewart's performance on Crossfire last Friday.


Monday, October 18, 2004

SSH Tips

Security Focus is running a primer on SSH. If you aren't familiar, don't implement it and want to familiarize yourself, or are just curious, pop over here.

The Terrorism Smell Test

If it looks like garbage, smells like garbage, and reads like garbage then it must be garbage.

Your comments please.

Friday, October 15, 2004

U.S. Elections from A Global Perspective

Without endorsment or comment, I link to this rundown at Haaretz documenting so-called global preferences in the U.S. presidential race.

Thursday, October 14, 2004

They say everything looks better from Canada...

Hobbes in Everyday Affairs: The Traffic Light Edition

For those of you not familiar with Thomas Hobbes, his contribution to the world of Political Science was a publication call The Leviathan. In that particular publication he posited that, amoung other things, Man's first and easiest path is to devolve into circumstances of utter chaos - anarchy if you will. The only way to offset this chaos was for Man to enter into a social contract. We know the contract as government I suppose.

The concepts of Hobbes are crucial to understand. I would claim that one cannot have a complete political philosophy short of understanding Hobbes' arguments. Comparing and contrasting Hobbes with John Locke is the next logical step. From that comparison, I believe we draw out the two major areas from which government draws its genesis: The belief in Man's base nature or Man's desire and understanding of and for goodness and order sans a social contract. Now, this in no way is an exhaustive study. In fact, one could argue that I've got the comparisons all wrong. But hold on just one paragraph reader!

The purpose of this ridiculously long, boring, drawn out post is to document Hobbes in everyday life. Where? At the traffic light of course.

The other day, I was on my way to the airport. At one of the busiest intersections in Charlotte, the traffic lights were out. Chaos reigned supreme! Gone was the social order. In lieu of rules, regulations, and consequences for violating those constraints, Man, or drivers in this case, did as he or she saw fit. With total disregard for safety and others' well being, many drivers would simply blow through the intersection. The answer to the problem is that if a signal fails the intersection defaults to a 4-way stop. You could certainly chalk this one up to drivers not knowing what to do. I disagree. People knew what they were doing. They understood that following the car in front of them was neither the orderly, proper, and safe thing to do. But they also know that doing so would benefit them.

This isn't just a North Carolina phenomenon; I have seen this all over the world. From 14 mile rd and Livernois in Clawson, Michigan to Athlone, Ireland. And if any of you have ever seen Mexico City - yikes!

I could be mistaken but the way we as people handle these situations strikes me a validation for Hobbes' theories - at least in part. Watching our following residents of planet Earth, that would otherwise be law-abiding, devolve into a Simpson-style mob mentality tells me that Man is not good by nature. His MO is not one of law, order, ethics, morality, and justice. Rather it is furthering himself.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Ann Coulter: Batshit Insane

The problem isn't what Ann Coulter says. The problem is that morons listen and big media give her airtime. The easiest way to solve this problem is to "just don't look" as The Simpsons told us when the giant adverts began smashing Springfield.

Here is a small body of her work from Media Matters for America. What's new with these clips? Well, she claims that terrorists want John Kerry for President and that Democrats can't/won't defend America and there's more!

Yes I realize the irony in asking you all to "just don't look" and then posting this. Yes, I also realize that Media Matters is a left-of-center organization. But they have video clips - so you can't really argue with what people on these clips say.

Finally, so as to never waste my time or my reader's time, I will never post anything about Ann Coulter again. Nor, will I post about any other info-tainer. (Unless there are extenuating circumstances!)

Greg Dulli: Not Dead

Former Afghan Whigs lead singer Greg Dulli has released two albums with The Twilight Singers. Rumours of Mr. Dulli's death have been severely exaggerated!

I had a chance to check out The Twilight Singers newest record of covers: She Loves You. I liked the record and suggest that you check it out. I especially recommend giving it a listen if you like The Afghan Whigs and miss their musical contributions.

Monday, October 11, 2004

The Opiate of the Electorate

Blatantly stolen from Kop's Blog, this article (original link to John Q. Malcontent's post here) is a truly fascinating peeky-boo into polls and how they fuck up our democracy.

Mad props to Kop for posting this in the first place. Here's a snip from article:

Our addiction to polls has done more than enhance the already unacceptable power of the media; it has also redirected our attention and efforts away from policy and toward trivial personality contests at a time when much is at stake.

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Energy Savings Tips for Winter

If you are like me and Mrs. Ober you are preparing to deal with another expensive winter. As fuel bills skyrocket and tempetures drop, our drafty ghetto home attacks our pocketbooks every month.

Here are a few tips from Yahoo Finance and here are a few from The Department of Energy's office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Working Backwards From Ideology

Norbizness has taken the time and effort to document the latest rash of evidence that things are not going swimmingly well in Iraq. Worse yet, the situation in the U.S. is going worse as facts are falling victim to ideology.

Now we know that there were no WMD, we know that the administration knew they were overstating the facts, and, we know they hyped and distorted the relationship between Al-Qaeda and Hussein.

Want to see how working backwards works?

When you find out that the gig is up regarding WMD, play up the fact that he was tied to terrorism. When that doesn't work, just say you liberated a people. And those same people that buy "We liberated those poor people" argued against Bush #1 and Clinton operating in Somalia, argued against our actions in the Balkans, and argued against taking action in Rwanda.

I actually heard this line of "reasoning" today:
Coworker: The last time there was a war, their really wasn't a contested election. The Republicans loved their country enough not to engage in politics.
Me: You mean in '72?
Coworker: No.
Me: You mean in '68?
Coworker: No, that wasn't a war. That was a "police action".
Me: Ahhh, one in which 58,000 Americans died.
Me (again): So you mean Korea?
Coworker: No, I mean World War II.
Me: So let me get this straight, there have been 2 wars since 1941: World War II and "The War on Terror".
Coworker: Yes.

Work backwards my friends, work backwards. ...and that's why you don't talk politics at work!

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

Burton Terrace Passes Sanity/Kool-Aid Test

Well, I found a conservative blog that isn't bat-shit insane. It's Burton Terrace by J. Scott Barnard.

Thoughtful, funny, and, well-moderated. Take a gander!

Monday, October 04, 2004

Where is Ober?
If you look over to the right side on the 35th floor you can see me playing Rise of Nations during working hours.

Pollard-Hussein Act Passes House

Washington, DC - Congressional leaders announced the passage of the Pollard-Hussein Act in June with little fan fair. Only recently have pundits, reporters, and citizens seen the effects in their day-to-day lives.

The act, which mandates the certain language when discussing the bill's name sakes, passed by an overwhelming margin. The bill called for individuals or organizations referring to Marcus Pollard to reflect on the fact that he did not play college football while attending Bradley University. In the case of Hussein, individuals are required to state in the affirmative that the world is better off without him.

However, in an eleventh hour move, house Democrats snuck a clause in allowing for another option: stating that Hussein was either a "Son of a Bitch" or "A Brutal Dictator".

The Act has clearly had an impact. Yesterday, in the Indianapolis Colts' victory, Marcus Pollard caught a tipped ball intended for fellow Tight End Dallas Clark. Play-by-play announcers Newt Sterling and Brock Stranton both made light of Pollard's past:

Sterling: Look at the reply Brock. You can see the ball was tipped at the line. I think [quarterback Peyton]Manning clearing intended that to go to [Dallas]Clark.

Stranton: Incredible. Pollard really showed coordination and focus there. You know he didn't even play football in college? He was actually a basketball player.

Sterling: And it really came in handy there didn't it?

Both: ***Laughing*** ***Agreeing*** ***Inaudible***

Stranton: Sure did. It was almost like he was getting a rebound and I wasn't required by law to say that!

Pollard celebrates the passage of the bill

Reflections on Hussein being a "Son of a Bitch" or the world being a better place without him are ubiquitous - particularly with critics of the Iraq war and occupation.

Liberal columnist Harvey Pellar noted on Sunday, in full compliance with the law:

Nobody doubts that Hussein was a brutal dictator. He couldn't have been more of a son of a bitch. Anybody that doubts the world isn't better of without him ought to be shot in the head. But the occupation has been a quagmire without an exit strategy
and a plan to "win the peace".

Asked whether or not he felt he needed to be in complete compliance with the Pollard-Hussein Act, Pellar replied, "Me write good. Vote Kerry".

Brutal dictator Hussein not celebrating bill

Friday, October 01, 2004

Those Debatable Debates

In the aftermath of last night's goat fuck - otherwise called the Presidential debates - I must remind you all that it was a sham. It was nothing more then a glorified press conference devoid of any real discussion of issues.

Watch Bill Moyers' interview with Open Debates.Org's George Farah for more info.

(If you are still supporting the two parties after this, you're an ignorant asshole.)

"Almost 100 Terrorists Dead"

...that's what was just said on Fox "News" regarding the clashes in Samarra today.

Remember "The Power of the Association".

"An Utter Disgrace"

The British Grand Prix at Silverstone has been axed.

I'm not sure how to explain this. On some level, it almost appears that FIA is doing what the NHL did 10 years ago by expanding to new markets for quick financial gain.

I don't suggest that the recent Chinese Grand Prix was a success but with so many teams based in the U.K. and France, how can FIA really justify leaving its fanbase?

Spreading the love is great but I'm starting to feel uncomfortable. When you spread the proverbial love to places like Bahrain where the tradition of motorsport is a bit - hmmmmm - less establish, I start to question motives.

"Why are You Laughing"

For some reason, Jack La Lanne has been all over television these days. I caught a few of his interviews while in St. Louis this week.

People like to giggle when Mr. Lalanne talks; they like to treat him like a freak or a bizarre anomaly. When explaining a simple fact - that artificially modified foods and ingredients aren't good for you - to CNN morning anchors, all they could do was laugh. Almost like saying, "Ahhhh, isn't he cute. Bless his heart". La Lanne replied, with a serious look on his face, "Why are you laughing"?

It is exactly like when Bill Mahrer talks about high fructose corn syrup. People just laugh and roll there eyes; "Ahhhh, there he goes again".

But La Lanne is a bad ass. It should be obvious to everybody by now that he has it figured out. And while the rest of the country is suffering from diabetes, asthma, and morbid obesity, he is humming along at age 90.

Life is pretty simple. La Lanne was only smart enough and had enough respect for himself to accept the truth that was right before him. Perhaps we should stop laughing and start listening.

The streets will flow with the blood of the non-believers

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