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Showing posts from September, 2011

Vacation Vacation

We just got back from a short vacation visiting my friends and family. While the visiting itself was great (thanks, all!), the vacation time itself was spent traveling a lot. As anyone knows who has done it, traveling is strangely tiring. Although you sit on your ass in the plane and the car, you wind up tired as hell whenever you arrive somewhere.

The trip down was a "me" travel experience; anyone who frequents this blog knows what I mean. We had delays while planes were fixed, late departures, rude flight attendants, and even mysterious liquid dripping on me from a hole in the plane (turned out to be water condensation, but still). Luckily, the trip back was a "her" travel experience; pretty much smooth sailing, everything mostly on time, no hiccups or real issues. It was a nice change, as we've had more "me" travel experiences lately.

The thing is, we arrived in Atlanta exhausted. We then spent the time there fighting with the Hotel Melia over sill…

Right to Privacy

People have an expectation of privacy. While many claim we have a Right to Privacy, the Constitution itself doesn't grant that, and the Bill of Rights only grants privacy in certain circumstances. The Ninth Amendment has a vague, open-ending statement that some interpret as protecting privacies not enumerated in the Bill of Rights. But, as a whole, the people have a certain expectation of privacy, and that is why governmental agencies must get warrants in order to breach that privacy.

Lately, I have been using application, websites, and utilities that take a different approach. Facebook, for example, has made numerous changes to its features, all of which have provided more of my data to either Facebook itself, to its partners, to the apps people/businesses create for Facebook, or to other members. The problem I have here is that Facebook a) didn't ask me if this was okay, b) didn't tell me they were doing it, c) didn't give me an option to opt out (or hid that option …

Darker Isn't Better

The flaw I see in the reasoning of movie executives is that they think The Dark Knight did such bang-up business because it was so "dark," rather than believing it did so well due to a combination of excellent acting, a good story, and Heath Ledger's untimely death (and superlative acting).

Movies, especially comic book movies, do not need to be darker. Captain America, Superman, and many other heroes represent what is best and brightest about America; our morality in the face of overwhelming evil, our compassion in the face of overwhelming threat, our heart in the face of overwhelming despair. Certain characters, like Batman, Wolverine, and The Punisher, can be dark and be successful because of the background of the character. The Dark Knight worked as a dark film because the character of Batman is a lonely, frightened boy who is raging against the world that took his parents away from him. That rage both fuels his war on crime and eats away at him because he knows, dee…

Working for a Brighter Tomorrow

Since World War II, the way in which America has overcome depressions and recessions are with infrastructure building and scientific advancement. So, why has it taken the President so long to propose a jobs bill that proposes one or the other?

We got out of the Great Depression primarily due to infrastructure building, including such worthy endeavors as the national highway systems and Hoover Dam. Projects like going to the moon staved off economic worries and put thousands to work.

There are only two ways to improve an economy of a country: get people to spend money and/or cut what the government is spending. The current administration is cutting like mad, but there is only so much cutting you can do and still have a government. So, we need people spending money. Unfortunately, people are still worried about the economy, so they are hording their money. If you put more people to work, get more people spending money, then other people's worries are relaxed and they spend money, to…

HP and Death

*NOTE: SPOILERS IF YOU HAVEN'T ALREADY READ THE SERIES OR WATCHED THE MOVIES*

I decided to reread each Harry Potter book and watch each movie, one after the other. My original goal was to compare and contrast the books to the movies and see what and how much they changed and/or dropped in translating the books to film. However, along the way, my focus changed. I came to realize that Ms. Rowling has some very nice things to say about friendship/love and death.

The entire thesis of her seven-book opus is that those who love are more powerful and better off than those who seek power, which is necessarily a singular task that does not brook relationships. She then takes this a step further and suggests that those who have love are not overly scared of, are accepting of, and are willing to brave death, while those who seek power are scared of death and will fight against it at all costs and to their very detriment.

Harry Potter originally survives because of the sacrifices of his paren…