Tuesday, July 28, 2009
I found this video on Youtube while looking for historical reference pieces. It is very well edited and the music choice brings modern flavor to what our Grandfather's and Grandmother's (Yes, they fought too!) did in the American Revolution.
To All My Patriots...I say thank-you.
Before the vote, there were still GOPers who questioned Obama's authenticity and said they wished to see the documents that everyone has seen (on the internet). Some didn't vote rather than vote no (and face public ridicule for being a conspiracy theorist, I guess.)
Now let's get back to watching the Republicans screw us on health care.
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
|Bill Kristol Extended Interview|
When Palin's name is brought up I want to run screaming in the opposite direction. When I hear about Republican plans to just "kill" the current legislation on healthcare, I want to ask simply...What have you done for our country these past 8 years?
This is actually a humorous but very telling interview by Jon Stewart. Bill Kristol is so smug you will need an oxygen mask at times.
Monday, July 27, 2009
Killorglin, in the geographical heart of Kerry, is the venue for one of Ireland's most unusual street festivals - Puck Fair. The fair is one of Ireland's oldest and longest celebrated and is held without fail on 10th, 11th and 12th August every year with 12 hours of free family street entertainment.
The annual crowning of a goat as King of Ireland at one of the country's oldest fairs is in doubt after organizers said the heir to the throne may be stopped from traveling to the festival.
Traditionally a male goat is caught in the mountains of Kerry in southern Ireland and paraded through the town of Killorglin where he reigns for the three days of Puck Fair, a centuries-old festival of drinking, music and dancing.
Locals may have to desperately trek the nearby hills after this year's chosen animal from the Northern Ireland town of Ballycastle could only get a four-day license for the trip south of the border.
"It takes at least a day to bring a goat from Ballycastle to Killorglan and the goat is on the stand for three days. It's not possible to do that within the four days," Puck Fair chairman Declan Mangan told state radio station RTE.
"The people in Ballycastle are looking for another goat who would be able to come for an extended trip to Kerry. In the meantime we have to look around the mountains here just incase."
Mangan said time is already running out for the local goat catcher to find a replacement for the fair which always falls on August 10-12, despite having origins that are not totally known.
"Our problem is if we don't get a goat from the north pretty quick, our goat catch Frank Joy will have to go out onto the mountains and usually he is out for two or three weeks looking for a suitable goat," Mangan said.
However the panic could be good news for one lucky goat.
"If you are a goat here in the mountains of Kerry, you could well end up being the King Of Ireland for the three days of Puck," Mangan added.
A Little History:
The most widely mentioned story relating to the origin of King Puck, associates him with the English Ironside Leader Oliver Cromwell. It is related that while the "Roundheads" were pillaging the countryside around Shanara and Kilgobnet at the foot of the McGillycuddy Reeks, they routed a herd of goats grazing on the upland. The animals took flight before the raiders, and the he-goat or "Puck" broke away on his own and lost contact with the herd. While the others headed for the mountains he went towards Cill Orglain (Killorglin) on the banks of the Laune. His arrival there in a state of semi exhaustion alerted the inhabitants of the approaching danger and they immediately set about protecting themselves and their stock.
It is said that in recognition of the service rendered by the goat, the people decided to institute a special festival in his honour and this festival has been held ever since.
Other legends regarding the origin of "King Puck" relates to the time of Daniel O'Connell, who in 1808 was an unknown barrister. It seems that before that year, the August fair held in Killorglin had been a toll fair, but an Act of the British Parliament empowered the Viceroy or Lord Lieutenant in Dublin to make an order, at his own discretion, making it unlawful to levy tolls at cattle, horse or sheep fairs. Tolls in Killorglin at this time were collected by the local landlord - Mr Harman Blennerhassett - who had fallen into bad graces with the authorities in Dublin Castle and as a result the Viceroy robbed him of his right to levy tolls. Blennerhassett enlisted the services of the young Daniel O'Connell, who in an effort to reverse the decision decided that goats were not covered by the document and that the landlord would be legally entitled to hold a goat fair, and levy his tolls as usual. Thus the fair was promptly advertised as taking place on August 10th, 1808, and on that day a goat was hoisted on a stage to show to all attending that the fair was indeed a goat fair - thus Blennerhassett collected his toll money and Killorglin gained a King.
Whatever its origins, the fair has long been and continues to be the main social, economic and cultural event in the Killorglin Calendar. It is a time when old friends meet, when new friendships are forged and the cares of everyday living are put on hold.
Here is a website from the Fair in Ireland if you want to learn a bit of history behind this charming fair. It is really a cute site.
Take a trip over the pond to find out more!
Monday, July 20, 2009
Horrific stories are now being released of the crushing hand of Iran's state militia, used against citizens opposed to the rule of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and especially against women.
Since the re-election of Ahmadinejad in late June, which was protested by many anti-Islamic Revolutionary Iranians as fixed, protests have swept through the Iranian capital city of Tehran and the rest of the country, demanding a recount of votes and the appointment of opposition presidential candidate Mir-Hossein Mousavi as president of Iran.
Yet that is not what has happened. With Ahmadinejad's victory declared official, paramilitary mercenaries loyal to Khamenei have taken to the streets, terrorizing citizens and beating protesters, some to the point of death.
Amateur videos attributed to Iranian students have saturated internet video sharing sites. One, showing the street shooting and slow death of female student and protester Neda Soltan, has come to symbolize the violent and oppressive Iranian regime.
The Basij militia, founded by First Supreme Leader Ayatollah Sayyid Ruhollah Musavi Khomeini in 1979, are being heavily employed to instill fear in protestors. Receiving their orders from the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, they are ardently loyal to the current religious leader, Khameini.
Populated primarily by youth seeking official benefits, the organization has not just been employed to crack down on anti-government actions, but generally enforces strict dress and social codes against women as well as spying out immoral conduct such as the distribution of anti-government propaganda or the possession of satellite dishes.
Reports are now surfacing that on June 14, Basiji militants broke into the dormitories of Tehran University against Iranian law, terrorizing students and murdering five of them. In a report by Britain's Guardian newspaper, 133 students were snatched from their beds in the middle of the night, following a severe beating of several students in front of the main gate to the university during the day.
Basiji militants broke into the dormitories of Tehran University against Iranian law, terrorizing students and murdering five of them.
Approximately a quarter of them were taken to the basement of the Interior Ministry where vote counting was taking place. The rest were taken to a security police building, some reporting mistreatment and others torture.
Five students died during the attack, being beaten repeatedly on the head with electric batons and buried the next day without notification to their families, according to the Guardian. After they were informed, families were warned not to mention their children or hold funerals, as was the case with the family of Soltan.
It is not yet possible to ascertain the number of injuries and casualties sustained by protestors, as hospitals and medical personnel have been forbidden from publicizing the facts. However, casualty estimates by human rights organizations have reached as high as 500, a far cry from the government's toll of 20.
Not only do the Basiji exemplify the iron hand of Iran's religious leadership, but also its sordid morality. A sobering interview with an anonymous veteran Basiji militant published last week in the Jerusalem Post reveals the complicity of religious authorities in years of rape of female prisoners, deemed "marriages" by prison mullahs.
Basiji youth frequently perform street thefts and sexual assaults against girls too frightened to protest, said the source.
But once behind bars and sentenced to execution, young women are "married" to Basiji prison guards, who rape them the evening prior to their deaths.
Iranian law forbids the execution of virgins, regardless of their crimes. Non-consensual prison marriages are therefore performed to enable the state to execute the female criminals.
According to the source, young women are frequently drugged on their wedding nights, because of their fear. In the morning, said the anonymous Basiji, girls seem more ready to die.
Laws against Iranian women, while not seen to be as harsh as those promulgated against Saudi women and others in the Islamic world, are still disproportionately strict. Punishments for crimes such as adultery occasionally result in public stonings, though the practice was officially banned in 2002. In such cases, women are guilty until proven innocent – for men accused of adultery, the opposite is true.
Apollo 11 Landing Module
Portrait of the Apollo 11 crew: Neil Armstrong, commander (on left); Michael Collins, command module pilot (mid); and Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin.
TAKE AN EXTRAORDINARY TRIP IN SPACE
Above is Buzz Aldrin on the Moon.
This completely captured my imagination as a child and it did everyone's when it happened. Today we celebrate the 40th Anniversary of this incredible event in the history of mankind.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
(AP Photo) EDITORS NOTE AS A RESULT OF AN OFFICIAL IRANIAN GOVERNMENT BAN ON FOREIGN MEDIA COVERING SOME EVENTS IN IRAN, THE AP WAS PREVENTED FROM INDEPENDENT ACCESS TO THIS EVENT.
Mousavi's Web Site
In this photo, taken by an individual not employed by the Associated Press and obtained by the AP outside Iran, a female supporter of the Iranian opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi flashes a victory sign as she wears a green head scarf, a symbolic color of Mousavi's supporters, while she holds a poster of a leader of Iran's 1979 Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Mahmoud Taleghani, during a Friday prayer in Tehran, Iran, Friday, July 17, 2009. Tens of thousands of government opponents packed Iran's main Islamic prayer service Friday, chanting 'freedom, freedom' and other slogans as their top clerical backer Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani delivered a sermon bluntly criticizing the country's leadership over the crackdown on election protests.
Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani (Persian: اکبر هاشمی رفسنجانی Akbar Hāshemī Rafsanjānī
TEHRAN, Iran – In a sign of endurance for Iran's protest movement, demonstrators clashed with police Friday as one of the nation's most powerful clerics challenged the supreme leader during Muslim prayers, saying country was in crisis in the wake of a disputed election.
The turnout of tens of thousands of worshippers for former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani's sermon at Tehran University and the battles with police outside represented the biggest opposition show of strength in weeks. Protesters faced fierce government suppression and hundreds were arrested following the disputed June 12 presidential election.
Outside the university, protests grew from several hundred before the sermon to thousands afterward as worshippers joined in, chanting, "death to the dictator," a reference to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
Protesters were confronted by riot police and a menacing line of pro-government Basiji militiamen on motorcycles, who charged with batons. Plainclothes Basijis fired volleys of tear gas, and young protesters with green bandanas over their faces kicked the canisters across the pavement. Some set a bonfire in the street and waved their hands in victory signs. Dozens were arrested, taken away in trucks, witnesses said.
Protests, which flared following the election, had been stifled in recent weeks. The sometimes tearful sermon by Rafsanjani could be a significant boost to the movement's staying power. It was an open challenge to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, aired live on nationwide radio from one of the country's most potent political stages. By openly showing the divisions in the leadership, it punched a hole in efforts by Khamenei and hard-line clerics to end the controversy over Ahmadinejad's re-election.
Worshippers chanted "azadi, azadi," Persian for "freedom," during Rafsanjani's sermon, his first since the election. Opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi, who claims to have won the election, sat among the worshippers, attending the country's main prayer service for the first time since the turmoil began.
Many of those gathered wore headbands or wristbands in his campaign color green, or had green prayer rugs, crowding the former soccer field where prayers are held and spilling into nearby streets.
Rafsanjani denounced the government crackdown on protests and called for the release the hundreds detained.
He reprimanded the clerical leadership for not listening to people's complaints over the election, which was declared a victory for Ahmadinejad despite opposition accusations of fraud.
"There is a large portion of the wise people who say they have doubts (about the election). We need to take action to remove this doubt," he said. "The trust that brought the people to vote in such large numbers is not there anymore. We need to return this trust."
Rafsanjani avoided directly mentioning Khamenei or outright calling the vote fraudulent. He couched his sermon in calls for unity in support of Iran's Islamic Republic, but it was clear he blamed the leadership for the loss of unity.
The cleric got tears in his eyes as he spoke of how Islam's Prophet Muhammad "respected the rights" of his people. He said the founder of Iran's Islamic Republic, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, "would always say that if the system is not backed by the people, nothing would stand."
For Iranians listening across the country, the weekly Friday sermon in Tehran is the voice of the leadership and a symbol of its backing by God.
After hundreds of thousands joined protests against the election results in the days following the vote, the supreme leader used the podium to declare Ahmadinejad's victory valid and order a stop to unrest. The crackdown was launched soon after. In the weeks that followed, hard-line clerics have used the sermon to depict the protesters as tools of foreign enemies and tell worshippers to follow Khamenei.
Rafsanjani's sermon lay bare to the broader public that the dispute was internal and even Iran's ruling clerics are split. He directly referred to the divisions, saying the revered topmost theologians of Shia Islam, who have millions of followers, were not happy with the government.
Rafsanjani heads two powerful clerical bodies that oversee the government and parliament, the Expediency Council and the Experts Council. He is bitter rival of Ahmadinejad and is considered Mousavi's top supporter within Iran's clerical leadership.
A mercurial and savvy politician, Rafsanjani positioned himself as a leader emerging to resolve the unrest, saying he hoped his words would be a start to "help us pass safely through a problem that can unfortunately be called a crisis."
He specifically criticized his top rivals within the clerical leadership — the Guardians Council, a body dominated by hard-liners. The council oversaw the election, then held a partial recount that upheld Ahmadinejad's win but was dismissed by the opposition.
Rafsanjani said the Guardians Council missed an "opportunity to unite the people and regain their trust."
Inside the prayers, worshippers traded competing chants with some hard-liners in the congregation. When the hard-liners chanted "death to America," Mousavi supporters countered with "death to Russia" and "death to China," a reference to Ahmadinejad's alliance with both countries.
The Iranian government has accused the U.S. and other Western countries of inciting the massive street protests and interfering with the election. On Thursday, Ahmadinejad demanded and apology from the U.S. as a step toward dialogue between the two countries.
"They tried to interfere in our elections. They talked nonsense. They were rude. They fomented aggression against people's wealth and property," Ahmadinejad told a crowd of thousands in the northwestern city of Mashhad.
The U.S. has denied the government's allegations.
More than 500 remain in prison following the government's crackdown and at least 20 were killed. In the past three weeks, the opposition held only one other significant protest before Friday's.
The scene outside the university on Friday was tumultuous. Before the sermon, police fired tear gas at hundreds of Mousavi backers trying to enter.
When Mahdi Karroubi, another pro-reform candidate in the June election, headed for the prayers, plainclothes Basijis attacked him, shouting "death to the opponent of Velayat-e-Faqih," or supreme leader, witnesses said.
Also arrested was a prominent women's rights activist, Shadi Sadr, who was beaten by militiamen, pushed into a car and driven away to an unknown location, Mousavi's Web site said.
Protests died down by nightfall. After sunset, Iranians could be heard shouting from rooftops, "God is great" and "death to the dictator" — a show of opposition support that has been held every night since the election, but appeared louder and more widespread Friday night.
A Bill Moyer's commentary on the corrosive effects of special interest money on our government and our culture!
BILL MOYERS: Quality, affordable health care's on the critical list in America. And so is the newspaper business. So maybe it's not surprising that one of the most powerful papers in the country attempted an unholy alliance, trying to turn a profit from its newsroom's coverage of the fight for health care reform.
You may have missed the story because it broke on the eve of the July 4th weekend. The publisher of THE WASHINGTON POST, Katharine Weymouth — one of the most powerful people in the nation's capital — invited top officials from the White House, the Cabinet and Congress to her home for an intimate, off-the-record dinner to discuss health care reform with some of her reporters and editors covering the story.
But she then invited CEOs and lobbyists from the health care industry to come, too — providing they fork over $25,000 a head, or a quarter of a million if they want to sponsor a whole series of these cozy little get-togethers. And what is the inducement she offers them? Nothing less than — and I'm quoting the invitation verbatim — "An exclusive opportunity to participate in the health care reform debate among the select few who will actually get it done." The invitation reminds the CEOs and lobbyists that they will be buying access to "those powerful few in business and policy making who are forwarding, legislating, and reporting on the issues."
Remember, the invitation promises this private, intimate, and off-the-record dinner is an extension "of THE WASHINGTON POST brand of journalistic inquiry into the issues, a unique opportunity for stakeholders to hear and be heard."
Let that sink in. The "stakeholders" in health care reform in this case do not include the rabble — the folks across the country who actually need quality health care but can't afford it. If any of them showed up at the kitchen door on the night of this little soiree, a bouncer would drop kick them beyond the beltway.
In other words, before you can cross the threshold in Washington to reach "the select few who will actually get it done," you must first cross the palm of some outstretched hand. The dinner was canceled after the invite was leaked to the website politico.com — by a health care lobbyist, of all people. But it was enough to give us a glimpse into how things really work in Washington. A clear insight into why there is such a great disconnect between democracy and government today, between Washington and the rest of the country.
According to one poll after another, a majority of Americans not only want a public option in health care, they also think that growing inequality is bad for the country, that corporations have too much power over policy, that money in politics is the root of all evil, and that working families and poor communities need and deserve public support when the market fails to generate shared prosperity. But when the insiders in Washington finish tearing worthy intentions apart and devouring flesh from bone, none of these reforms happen. Oh, they say, "it's all about compromise, all in the nature of the give-and-take of representative democracy." That, people, is bull — the basic nutrient of Washington's high and mighty.
It's not about compromise. It's not about what the public wants. It's about money, the golden ticket to "the select few who actually get it done." And nothing will change. Nothing. Until the money-lenders are tossed out of the temple, and we tear down the sign they've placed on government — the one that reads: "For sale."
I'm Bill Moyers.
ANNOUNCER: There's more at our web site. Log onto PBS.org and click on "Bill Moyers Journal." You can watch Wendell Potter's complete congressional testimony, review the different proposals for health care reform and follow the money the health industry is lavishing on friendly politicians.
Go To PBS.org
Friday, July 17, 2009
In apparent defiance of Iran's supreme leader, a powerful cleric declared the Islamic Republic in crisis after a disputed election, and tens of thousands of protesters used Friday prayers to stage the biggest show of dissent for weeks.
Clashes erupted in central Tehran between police and followers of opposition leader Mirhossein Mousavi, who still contests official results that showed hardline President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad had been re-elected by a wide margin.
"Police fired tear gas and beat supporters of Mousavi in Keshavarz Boulevard," a witness said, adding that protesters were carrying hundreds of green banners -- Mousavi's campaign colour -- and chanting 'Ahmadinejad, resign, resign'."
Some demonstrators shouted "Death to Russia" in protest at Moscow's declared recognition of Ahmadinejad's election win. Former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, a moderate who backed Mousavi's election campaign, said many Iranians had doubts about the official result of the June 12 vote.
"I hope with this sermon we can pass through this period of hardships that can be called a crisis," said the influential cleric, leading prayers for the first time since the poll.
Live state radio broadcasts of Friday prayers at Tehran University, with a dual religious and political sermon delivered by a top cleric, have been a staple of revolutionary Iran. Rafsanjani did not go as far as Mousavi and reformist candidate Mehdi Karoubi in denouncing the conduct of the vote, but his remarks still posed a clear challenge to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has upheld the election result and accused foreign powers of fomenting the unrest.
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Sometimes, you find and listen to stuff across this big Internet of our that shows examples of stupidity so blatant, so unutterably and ineffably that you can't really comment about it - you can only stand in awe....Then just want to throw up.
This video with partial translation of stupidity is one of those moments.
(partial transcript follows)
BRIAN KILMEADE: We keep marrying other species and other ethnics--
GRETCHEN CARLSON: Are you sure you are not suffering from some of the causes of dementia right now?
BRIAN KILMEADE: The problem is the Swedes have pure genes. They marry other Swedes, that's the rule. Finns marry other Finns; they have a pure society. In America we marry everybody. We will marry Italians and Irish.
DAVE BRIGGS: This study does not apply?
BRIAN KILMEADE: Does not apply to us.
DAVE BRIGGS: Huh.
Feel free to hurl now....and yes they breed.
That would be a big....Yes, according to Internet Professional Professionals Database.
"NetworkWorld reports that security consultants Andrea Barisani and Daniele Bianco are preparing to unveil their methodology at the Black Hat USA conference for stealing information typed on a computer keyboard using nothing more than the power outlet to which the computer is connected. When you type on a standard computer keyboard, electrical signals run through the cable to the PC. Those cables aren't shielded, so the signal leaks via the ground wire in the cable and into the ground wire on the computer's power supply. The attacker connects a probe to a nearby power socket, detects the ground leakage, and converts the signal back into alphanumeric characters. So far, the attack has proven successful using outlets up to about 15 meters away. The cost of the equipment to carry out the power-line attack could be as little as $500 and while the researchers admit their hacking tools are rudimentary, they believe they could be improved upon with a little time, effort and backing. 'If our small research was able to accomplish acceptable results in a brief development time (approximately a week of work) and with cheap hardware,' they say, 'Consider what a dedicated team or government agency can accomplish with more expensive equipment and effort."
Stealing Data Via Electrical Outlets
Okay, what are we going to do about it?
I have a true love for the stars. Many a warm summer evening has been spent with my children outside on a blanket gazing upwards and picking out stars, planets and constellations.
For all those wonderful memories of gazing up. I post this excellent video.
Friday, July 10, 2009
With all the rain we have had recently, there is a phenomenon taking place here in parts of Colorado....Lady Bugs, by the millions! They have come to an undisclosed place, to one particular tree to hang out and be lady bugs. The tree is an incredible site. Below is a link to a slide show that starts out with just a few and gradually grows to an amazing number of these welcome guests. They will procreate and also eat the aphids, which the rain has brought in abundance too.
So you see Lady Bugs are lucky, in more ways than one.
Take This Direct Link to a slide show. It is amazing.
The GOP Ads have been rolling out the past two days in Colorado trying to squash the Obama health care plan. The Tweet Deck of the GOP is like a blue light sale at K-mart! It is business as usually with them....more fear tactics.
You know what is truly scary? Not having insurance, not knowing how you are going to take care of a loved one or yourself for that matter because you have no insurance or are poorly covered.
It doesn't take a brain surgeon, what a minute, for some of us it might....but anyway we have got to do something about health care in this country. People are dying and money is going like water off to make pharmaceutical and insurance companies richer than Midas.
Sure they don't want anything that might stop the almighty buck, but have you calculated what your next illness is going to cost you? Add it up and it alone will make you sick.
It is time we weed through the naysayers and the GOP and do something for ourselves and all Americans.
See Video and Tweet This Out!
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
What the hell kind of statement is that? Listen to the video and take the link for more informaton. I am speechless, but not surprised. Racism is alive and well in the United States. There is a whole group of wingnuts supporting the pool on their decision. You can find their comments on Twitter and the news sites.
If it sounds like racism, feels like racisms...then it probably was racism.
This is unexcusable from the perspective of the children. I want to know more about just want happened and who said what. For goodness sakes the owner needs to apologize. For whatever the misunderstanding was someone needs to make this right for the children. They are our greatest care.
White House among targets of sweeping cyber attack
The powerful attack that overwhelmed computers at U.S. and South Korean government agencies for days was even broader than initially realized, also targeting the White House, the Pentagon and the New York Stock Exchange.
Other targets of the attack included the National Security Agency, Homeland Security Department, State Department, the Nasdaq stock market and The Washington Post, according to an early analysis of the malicious software used in the attacks. Many of the organizations appeared to successfully blunt the sustained computer assaults.
The target list from security experts analyzing the attacks. It was not immediately clear who might be responsible or what their motives were.
The attack was remarkably successful in limiting public access to victim Web sites, but internal e-mail systems are typically unaffected in such attacks. Some government Web sites — such as the Treasury Department, Federal Trade Commission and Secret Service — were still reporting problems days after the attack started during the July 4 holiday. South Korean Internet sites began experiencing problems Tuesday.
South Korea's National Intelligence Service, the nation's principal spy agency, told a group of South Korean lawmakers Wednesday it believes that North Korea or North Korean sympathizers in the South were behind the attacks, according to an aide to one of the lawmakers briefed on the information.
The aide spoke on condition of anonymity, citing the sensitivity of the information. The National Intelligence Service — South Korea's main spy agency — said it couldn't immediately confirm the report, but it said it was cooperating with American authorities.
The attacks will be difficult to trace, said Professor Peter Sommer, an expert on cyberterrorism at the London School of Economics. "Even if you are right about the fact of being attacked, initial diagnoses are often wrong," he said Wednesday.
Amy Kudwa, spokeswoman for the Homeland Security Department, said the agency's U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team issued a notice to federal departments and other partner organizations about the problems and "advised them of steps to take to help mitigate against such attacks."
New York Stock Exchange spokesman Ray Pellecchia could not confirm the attack, saying the company does not comment on security issues.
This time, two government officials acknowledged that the Treasury and Secret Service sites were brought down, and said the agencies were working with their Internet service provider to resolve the problem. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak on the matter.
Ben Rushlo, director of Internet technologies at Keynote Systems, said problems with the Transportation Department site began Saturday and continued until Monday, while the FTC site was down Sunday and Monday.
Keynote Systems is a mobile and Web site monitoring company based in San Mateo, Calif. The company publishes data detailing outages on Web sites, including 40 government sites it watches.
According to Rushlo, the Transportation Web site was "100 percent down" for two days, so that no Internet users could get through to it. The FTC site, meanwhile, started to come back online late Sunday, but even on Tuesday Internet users still were unable to get to the site 70 percent of the time.
Web sites of major South Korean government agencies, including the presidential Blue House and the Defense Ministry, and some banking sites were paralyzed Tuesday. An initial investigation found that many personal computers were infected with a virus ordering them to visit major official Web sites in South Korea and the U.S. at the same time, Korea Information Security Agency official Shin Hwa-su said.
SAN JOSE, Calif. - Microsoft Corp. has taken the rare step of warning about a serious computer security vulnerability it hasn't fixed yet.
The vulnerability disclosed Monday affects Internet Explorer users whose computers run the Windows XP or Windows Server 2003 operating software.
It can allow hackers to remotely take control of victims' machines. The victims don't need to do anything to get infected except visit a Web site that's been hacked.
Security experts say criminals have been attacking the vulnerability for nearly a week. Thousands of sites have been hacked to serve up malicious software that exploits the vulnerability. People are drawn to these sites by clicking a link in spam e-mail.
The so-called "zero day" vulnerability disclosed by Microsoft affects a part of its software used to play video. The problem arises from the way the software interacts with Internet Explorer, which opens a hole for hackers to tunnel into.
Microsoft urged vulnerable users to disable the problematic part of its software, which can be done from Microsoft's Web site, while the company works on a "patch" — or software fix — for the problem.
Microsoft rarely departs from its practice of issuing security updates the second Tuesday of each month. When the Redmond, Wash.-based company does issue security reminders at other times, it's because the vulnerabilities are very serious.
A recent example was the emergency patch Microsoft issued in October for a vulnerability that criminals exploited to infect millions of PCs with the Conficker worm. While initially feared as an all-powerful doomsday device, that network of infected machines was eventually used for mundane moneymaking schemes like sending spam and pushing fake antivirus software.
On the Net:
Microsoft support page:
Go To Microsoft HERE
One Note: Those with XP IE and Vista seem to be reporting failures to connect to infected sites. Watch your security alerts on your computer.
Sunday, July 5, 2009
Creeping closer inch by inch – 900ft above the mighty Colorado River – the two sides of a bridge at the Hoover Dam in America slowly take shape.
The bridge will carry a new section of US Route 93 past the bottleneck of the old road which can be seen twisting and winding around and across the dam itself.
When complete, it will provide a new link between the states of Nevada and Arizona. In an incredible feat of engineering, the road will be supported on the two massive concrete arches which jut out of the rock face.
The arches are made up of 53 individual sections – each 24ft long – which have been cast on-site and are being lifted into place using an improvised high-wire crane strung between temporary steel pylons.
The arches will eventually measure more than 1,000ft across. At the moment, the structure looks like a traditional suspension bridge. But once the arches are complete, the suspending cables on each side will be removed.
Extra vertical columns will then be installed on the arches to carry the road. The bridge has become known as the Hoover Dam bypass, although it is officially called the Mike O'Callaghan-Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge, after a former governor of Nevada and an American Football player from Arizona who joined the US Army and was killed in Afghanistan.
Work on the bridge started in 2005 and should finish next year. An estimated 17,000 cars and trucks will cross it every day.
The dam was started in 1931 and used enough concrete to build a road from New York to San Francisco. The stretch of water it created, Lake Mead, is 110 miles long and took six years to fill. The original road was opened at the same time as the famous dam in 1936.
You surely don't want to take your eyes off the road for a second while traveling across. What an amazing view.
Saturday, July 4, 2009
Two of my friends. I support this program wholeheartedly. Check it out below.
Homes For Our Troops
This is an excellent organization that truly serves the veterans. If you are considering time or money. It is well spent here, I can assure you.
Here is Matt getting ready for a wheelchair obstacle race at Invesco Field, Mile High in May 2009. He is a man that has overcome so many obstacles, he won this race and the most important race in life.
Thanks to Homes for Our Troops.
Happy 4th of July Matt and Traci! You are our heroes!
Friday, July 3, 2009
She's resigning, effective July 26:
I had to listen to this twice. It is a rambling mess of anger, barbs, feelings, spite, defensiveness. Sarah Palin (R-Crazyville-North), has cut and run from the office that supposedly gave her the credentials she needed to be John McCain's VP. Let alone Presidential material. What makes Caribou Barbie think she is national material now?
A lot of rumors are flying as to why she is "hell yes" as she put it, stepping away from her job as Governor of Alaska. I suspect that she is going to be behind a movement to create a third party in our country...OR she is in girl in trouble, and I don't mean that kind of trouble. See RUMOR below.
A Party of Crazy Wingnuts?
This will free up the Republican Party a whole bunch. They would be thrilled to kick that luggage to the curb. They know they are no longer mainstream America because of it. So read between all the "emo...cry me a river," in the video and see this woman has a plan. She almost looks mad enough to cry. She is not her usual bubbly incoherent self.
You wait and see. I didn't say she would get elected. But I clearly suspicion something else is wrong. She is too angry and her body language suggests desperation of some kind.
There is a story circulating that there is a huge federal case against Palin coming towards her. Check this out.
The Iceberg Scandal Commeth
Either way...We will find out soon enough.
British Embassy Staffers To Go On Trial In Iran
A top Iranian cleric says some of the detained Iranian staffers of the British Embassy in Tehran will be put on trial.
Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati, who is close to Iran's supreme leader, has made the announcement in a Friday prayer sermon. He says the detained staffers "made confessions."
Jannati does not say how many staffers will be tried or on what charges. Earlier Iranian officials said all but one of the eight embassy personnel arrested on June 27had been released, but European Union officials said they believed more than one was still being held.
Jannati is the head of the Guardian Council, a powerful body in Iran's clerical rule, and is close to supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Thursday, July 2, 2009
Ironically, this document was voted on this day by the Continental Congress in Philadelphia on July 2, 1776. The rest is history.
Lets Ask For It Back
British researchers have announced the discovery of a rare original copy of America's Declaration of Independence , just in time for the Fourth of July. How sweet.
Katrina McClintock, a spokeswoman at the National Archives, said Thursday that a researcher accidentally discovered the "Dunlap print," named after a printer, several months ago. The find was announced only after it could be properly catalogued.
Edward Hampshire, the National Archives' specialist in colonial materials, said the find was "incredibly exciting."
"It is likely that only around 200 of these were ever printed, so uncovering a new one nearly 250 years later is extremely rare, especially one in such good condition," he said.
He said the Declaration is one of the most important documents in history because it marks the birth of the United States.
The last Dunlap print to be found was sold at an auction for $8.14 million in 2000.
National Archives officials said they weren't sure how the Declaration of Independence copy ended up there.
Archives spokeswoman Frances McDarby said it was "possible that an American coastal vessel was 'intercepted' by the British navy and that is how the document was able to come into our possession."
No Actually, we sent King George III his very own copy. I promise.
The prints, known collectively as the Dunlap Broadside, were the first copies of the Declaration of Independence. They were printed by John Dunlap of Philadelphia and distributed to political and military leaders, including George Washington, and dispatched throughout the colonies to be read to the public.
Note: Most of the fireworks displays noted below begin shortly after dusk, usually around 8:45-9 p.m.)
Cherry Creek Arts Festival
July 3-5, Cherry Creek North, Denver
Centrally located on the neighborhood streets of Cherry Creek North, this outdoor Arts Festival gives over 350,0000 annual visitors the chance to meet and talk with international visual artists, sample fine cuisine, visit special exhibits and artist demonstrations, and entertain their families with interactive 'Artivities' and exciting performing arts. Don’t miss the awesome fireworks display Saturday night on Fillmore Plaza!
More Info: http://www.cherryarts.org/
Old-Fashioned 4th of July Celebration
July 4, Four Mile Park, Denver
Go historic this Independence Day and bring the entire family for a day of fun at Four Mile Historic Park's Old-Fashioned 4th of July Celebration! Festivities will include visits from Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson and Uncle Sam; the reading of the Declaration of Independence and performances by the Denver Concert Band and other area musicians. Tour Denver's oldest standing structure, the Four Mile House museum and see how early settlers celebrated the Fourth and dealt with the summer heat. Traditional summertime food and refreshments will be available.
More Info: http://www.fourmilepark.org/
Olde Town Arvada Spirit of America 4th of July Festival
July 4, Arvada
Join close to 30,000 other revelers at Arvada’s spectacular annual celebration of the spirit of America. Free family-friendly events throughout the afternoon and evening include a Kids’ Park featuring an obstacle course, bungee run, big slide, face tattoos and more fun activities, a classic Car Show and plenty of food and drinks concession stands and carts. The star of the show, Arvada’s spectacular fireworks display, is one of the best (and safest) fireworks programs in the metro area.
More Info: http://www.arvadafestivals.com/
Colorado Symphony Orchestra's Spirit of America Concert
Fiddler's Green Amphitheatre, Englewood
The prestigious Colorado Symphony Orchestra presents a rousing “Spirit of America” performance at Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre. The CSO will be playing all-American patriotic classics, including “America, the Beautiful,” “Battle Hymn of the Republic” and “The Star Spangled Banner,” among many other favorites. Fireworks will be featured along with patriotic tunes, of course.
More Info: http://www.coloradosymphony.org/
Concerts at Red Rocks
July 3-5, Red Rocks Amphitheatre and State Park, Morrison
The world famous Red Rocks Amphitheatre has a full schedule over the 4th of July weekend. On the 3rd, catch Americana favorites Wilco. On the 4th, jam band stalwarts Blues Traveler take over Red Rocks and bring Daily Show comedian Lewis Black with them. Not only will the music be great, but also Red Rocks’ spectacular view will let you watch dozens of fireworks displays all at once. On the 5th, the Colorado Symphony Orchestra will play its second concert of the weekend, featuring works by Bach and Copland, plus selections from “The Sound of Music” and “Porgy and Bess.” This one is absolutely FREE -- an incredible deal.
More Info: http://www.redrocksonline.com/
The Rockies, The Rapids and The Outlaws
July 4, Various Locations
Denver is a pro sports paradise, with no less than eight pro teams, and during the summer, baseball, soccer and lacrosse seasons are in full swing. The Colorado Rockies are taking on the Arizona Diamondbacks Friday, July 3-Sunday, July 5 at LoDo’s Coors Field. At Dick’s Sporting Goods Stadium in Commerce City, the Colorado Rapids face the Chicago Fire on the 4th. Also on the 4th, catch Major League Lacrosse’s Denver Outlaws battling it out with the Boston Cannons at INVESCO Field at Mile High. Each of these games will be followed by state-of-the-art fireworks displays!
More Info: http://www.rockies.mlb.com/
Enjoy the Denver-Metro Area on the Fourth of July! Discover all that we have to do in the Mile High City!
Where To Go For More
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
He thinks we are going to buy this? His wife certainly isn't.
al Qaeda Threatens France
Al-Qaeda’s North Africa wing threatened on Tuesday to take revenge on France for its opposition to the burka, calling on Muslims to retaliate against the country, the US monitoring service SITE Intelligence reported.
Earlier this month, President Nicolas Sarkozy said the burka, which covers the whole face, was not welcome in the strictly secular country.
“Yesterday was the hijab (the Islamic headscarf long banned in French schools) and today, it is the niqab (the full veil),” Abu Musab Abdul Wadud, head of Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb was quoted as saying.
“We will take revenge for the honour of our daughters and sisters against France and against its interests by every means at our disposal.”
The group also called on Muslims to retaliate for what it called French “hostility” against the community and its attempt to obstruct Islam’s practice on its territory.
Wait a freaking moment, it is France's territory. Their schools, and their decisions. Last time I checked France was not an Islamic state, yet.
But for certain individuals the perspective is obviously different.
A North Korean ship tracked by the U.S. Navy on suspicion of carrying a banned arms cargo may be returning home, a U.S. official said, as Washington cracks down on companies helping Pyongyang export missile systems.
North Korea will find it increasingly difficult to trade arms due to U.S. moves and U.N. sanctions to punish it for a May nuclear test, but those measure will not end the weapons exports the destitute state relies on for foreign currency, experts said.
"Of course, it raises the costs of doing the arms and weapons of mass destruction business, but it won't stop them from trying to circumvent the sanctions," said Daniel Pinkston with the International Crisis Group in Seoul.
North Korea Moving In Dangerous Waters
Nearly two weeks after the ship left North Korea, officials said Tuesday they still don't know where it is going. But it was some 250 miles south of Hong Kong on Tuesday, one official said.
Though acknowledging all along that the Kang Nam's destination was unclear, some officials said last week that it could be going to Myanmar and that it was unclear whether it could reach there without stopping in another port to refuel.
The U.N. resolution allows the international community to ask for permission to board and search any suspect ship on the seas. If permission for inspection is refused, authorities can ask for an inspection in whichever nation where the ship pulls into port.
North Korea has said it would consider any interception of its ships a declaration of war.
China, the North's biggest benefactor, backed a U.N. resolution condemning the North's nuclear test and imposing fresh sanctions on its arms trade, but Beijing has long been reluctant to press for more.
China, fearing a collapse in the North's government and the chaos that would cause on its border, supplies the North with oil, food and other items that prop up its wobbly economy.
"As long as China, to a large extent, and Russia, to a lesser extent, do not implement the sanctions, they will not work," said Cho Myungchul, a research fellow at the South's Korea Institute for International Economic Policy, who was an academic in North Korea before defecting to the South.
This ought to be interesting the first time they are boarded.