Monday, March 31, 2003

I Don't Usually Spam E-mail

But this was cute:

Subject: Snappy Answers to ........

Young Americans will die in battle.
-- Would you prefer they die in skyscrapers?

The United States is taking unilateral action against Iraq!
--So far, it's a 90-member worldwide "unilateral" coalition.

We are in a rush to war.
--A 12-year rush?

Tough inspections can disarm Saddam Hussein without invading Iraq.
--12 years of inspections have done wonders so far.

We should let the inspectors finish their job.
-- We did. They didn't. We will.

Why fight? The Iraqi military is weaker than in 1991.
-- But their biological weapons and chemical weapons are much more dangerous.

There's no proof of weapons.
-- We know they have 'em, we know they hide 'em, and we have tape recordings and photographs. What more is needed? An Iraqi rocket in Martin Sheen's shorts?

If we invade, Saddam Hussein might use those weapons of mass destruction against us.
-- I thought you said Iraq didn't have them?

But terrorists might attack if we invade Iraq.
--Oh, so if we don't attack Iraq, terrorists will never strike again?

We shouldn't go to war without a UN resolution.
-- ANOTHER resolution? What about the last 18 resolutions? Shall we use them as wallpaper? Or shall we use the same resolutions Bill Clinton used in Bosnia? (he didn't go to the UN on Bosnia)

We don't have a real declaration for war.
--It's called "Joint Congressional Resolution #114."

We are giving 20 billion dollars to Turkey. We could use that money at home.
--OK, we'll use that money to strengthen our Iraqi border with Wyoming.

If North Korea has nuclear weapons, why aren't we invading them first?
-- Uh...hello...isn't that the point?

European leaders are against the war.
-- The Reichstag wasn't attacked. The Grande Place wasn't attacked. The Kremlin wasn't attacked. And the Jerry Lewis Lifetime Achievement Museum wasn't attacked. America was attacked. And besides, except for the
tantrums of France, Belgium and Germany, only three European nations aren't willing to defend freedom. The entire rest of Europe is with America.

The French don't support the war.
-- Oh, did they surrender already?

Germany objects to this war.
-- Germany objected to Reagan's "attitude" towards the Soviet Union. Of course, they objected to our presence in 1943 as well.

Belgians are against the war.
-- I can live without waffles and ice cream.

Russia doesn't support the war.
-- They are still angry over Reagan's brilliant Cold War victory.

Polls show Europeans are against this war.
-- Polls show Europeans believe their freedom was achieved by endlessly debating in marvelous dining halls, conveniently forgetting their right to be pompous blowhards was granted with American blood, not fabulous wine
and brie.

We should build a coalition with our friends.
-- With friends like these, who needs enemies?

What happens if we can't build a United Nations coalition?
-- Who cares?

But the UN is the world's most respected governing body.
-- Not as respected as the US military.

America has always waited until enemies attacked.
--Now that oceans can't hold back enemies, pre-emptive war is forever a necessity.

War will cost billions!
-- So how much is YOUR city worth?

President Bush says he's willing to violate the 1976 executive order forbidding assassinations of foreign leaders.
-- As soon as the ink is dry on rescinding that idiotic order, will someone please pull the trigger? The line forms to the right.

Many Senators don't support Bush.
-- Are you speaking of the Senators from Bordeaux?

Tom Daschle says George Bush has a "credibility gap"
-- When was the last time we came to Tom Daschle for the truth???

These problems didn't happen under Clinton.
-- Actually, they happened. But Clinton ignored them. Now, Bush will clean up his mess.

But Clinton didn't start a war.
-- Unless his girlfriend was testifying before congress.

Bush senior should have taken out Hussein in '91.
-- That 1991 UN resolution forbade a march on Baghdad. Remember?

Millions of peace activists are demanding we stop the war.
--Millions of Iraqi's are begging for us to start the war.

Thousands of innocents will be killed or injured.
-- That's a lot less than Hussein is killing right now.

Protesters have genuine objections to war
-- Just like they did in WWII? Korea? Vietnam? Panama? The Gulf War? Somalia? Haiti? Bosnia? Afghanistan?

People are coming from all over the world to act as "human shields".
-- Quick...hurry up...before the bombs start dropping.
This is about American Imperialism.
-- So which country do we own? Name our colonies? What nation sends us their tax dollars? If America was imperialist, we'd already own the entire world. Who could stand in our way?

This is Blood for Oil
-- The only blood is the Iraqi people tortured, starved and killed while Hussein builds massive palaces to hide nuclear weapons...all financed with Iraqi oil.

This is a racist war.
-- America happily endorses a multi-cultural attitude towards anyone who dares to take away our freedom. Regardless of race, color, or creed; we will hunt them down and kill them.

A U.S.-led invasion of Iraq is a great recruiting tool for terrorists.
-- Have fun recruiting people into oppressive misery as they enjoy their first taste of freedom.

An attack on Iraq could seriously undermine and destabilize Arab nations.
-- Destabilize the region? What stability? The sooner we topple these oppressive 14th century terrorist regimes the better.

Are we prepared for a multi-billion dollar occupation?
-- Were we prepared to liberate Europe and Japan in 1945? South Korea in 1953? Grenada? El Salvador? Kuwait? The Eastern Bloc? Afghanistan? Nations always love Americans when we rescue them from tyranny. The price of freedom is never free.

Polls show Americans are more concerned about the threat from al Qaeda than from Iraq.
-- It's not a war against Al Qaeda. It's not a war against Iraq. It's a war against terrorism. Anywhere we find it. One nation at a time.

American opinion is against the war.
-- No, it's not. A majority of Americans want to fight now, not later.

According to a recent poll. . .
-- You know what? Screw those polls. We're in a war against terrorism. If you don't want to fight the ones who would murder you and your family in a heartbeat, get the hell out of the way. Go visit Paris. Or Antwerp. Or Berlin. Or Moscow. And stay there. Forever. But this time, don't call us when the heathens are at the gates.

Coming soon to an e-mail box near you...

Saturday, March 22, 2003

Source of Maps of the Middle East

People have been looking for more detailed maps of the Middle East on-line. Here's a few:

Baghdad (area)

Kuwait (Political)
Kuwait (Relief)




Turkey (4016K)

Saudi Arabia


Middle East

Hope you find these links useful.

Friday, March 21, 2003

I Guess I'm One of The Lucky Ones Too

"We are the lucky ones"

Yeah, OK, I can hear some of you now (those people who live in negativity-land) who will grouse that those days were full of hidden child and spousal abuse, alcoholism, and racism. Well, we could have fixed all those things without changing the good things, no?

Thursday, March 20, 2003

It's Getting Worse

As you can see from this article, the SARS situation is getting worse. It appears that this outbreak started with a doctor from China (the area where SARS is thought to have come from) that was visiting a hotel in Hong Kong.

Cases have now been seen in Switzerland and New York City. I think this is going to get much worse before it gets any better. Since we have no treatment for this particular virus family, it's quite chilling to think what could happen in the next few months.

Monday, March 17, 2003

Hopefully Medical Technology Can Stop This One

Today the World Heath Organization and the U.S. Center for Disease Control released warnings about a Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). You can read a FAQ about the little we know about the disease here.

Due to the mobility of our population, the disease seems to be spreading rapidly. It seems to me to have some of the same characteristics of the Spanish Flu Pandemic of 1918. The theory at this time is that it started somewhere in the Far East (China, Vietnam, etc). At this time, 9 of the 150 known persons with the syndrome have died, which is a 6% mortality rate. Pretty darned high. It's a little early to panic, but there seems to be a lot of genuine concern in the medical community about this one.

I did some searching, and came across something that looked similar, the Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) which has been around a while. ARDS is not a disease in itself, its what happens to persons when they have some injury to the lungs or already have pneumonia. I found a treatment for ARDS, which may be what the medical community is using to treat this one. ARDS seems to be a direct consequence of SARS, though they seem almost the same.

The Spanish Flu Pandemic (so called due to the fact that reporting about it wasn't censored in neutral Spain) appeared and disappeared quite quickly. In fact, in 1999 this article asks if it could happen again. (The article is Part 1 or 2, but I couldn't find part 2). In 1997, a new strain of Influenza that is carried by birds was passed to humans in Hong Kong.

Both this Flu and the Spanish Flu died off quickly. Which seems very odd to me. In 1918 there was little ability to fight it. What caused it to go dormant?

Also, at the time draconian laws were passed to try to limit the spread of the disease. People are complaining about the Patriot Act now, imagine what will have to happen if this syndrome manifests itself in the same manner as the Spanish Flu did. We can communicate warnings much better now than in 1918, and medical researchers can share information, but we also travel more freely, and the disease may spread more quickly than anything before unless we do something about it.

This, along with West Nile Virus are a little disconcerting to me. Hopefully technology can nip this one before anything bad happens. At a 6% mortality rate, and with one-quarter of the US getting the Spanish Flu in 1918, we could see 4.2 million fatalities if the same rates of infection occur.

I hope history doesn't repeat itself.

Wednesday, March 12, 2003

This Is A Great Country

I'm sitting here, blogging and getting paid. Another Computer Forensics case, this time looking for porn. So I'm getting paid to look at porn. What a great country, no? Of course, having to wait for the computer to do keyword searches of a large hard drives entire contents can take a while, so I have to wait before I find the stuff.

I started the case this weekend, and while I was waiting for an md5sum to generate after a dd bit-copy of a forensic image to an analysis drive I turned on the TV. It takes a while on some of these drives for the copy and checksum to generate.

So I'm flipping channels, and I come across The Quick And The Dead. Yeah, so the plot is no different than a million other spaghetti westerns, except this one skips most of the hoopla and gets right into gunfight after gunfight. Way cool. To top it off, Gene Hackman is the bad guy, and Sharon Stone is the main character. So we have one of my favorite actors to watch, and one of my favorite actresses to look at, along with gratuitous violence and debauchery.

I don't know how personable Gene Hackman is in real life, but he is a great actor. I've enjoyed him in all the films I've seen him in, from Lex Luthor in the Superman movies, to the conspiracy theorist in Enemy of The State. In this one, he is the guy we all love to hate, and Sharon Stone is the one who is looking to take him out. For some reason (yeah, right!) they have Sharon Stone sleeping with no pants, but still wearing her boots. Oh well, its a fun movie to watch if you don't need a complex story-line. It's just good entertainment. Then again, my moniker comes from my favorite movie of all time, Big Trouble In Little China, so who I am to say what is bad?

Anyway, I see the DVD (yes, it's out on DVD) can be had for around $10, so I think I'm going to try to find a copy locally and pick it up.