Daily Archives: September 25, 2010

Go Sox!

7 -3 , Bosox Yankees tonight. 10- 8, Bosox, yesterday. Can you say, “2004”?


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This gets funnier with each cycle

"I'm a lumberjack and I'm okay..."

Every twenty years or so the fashion industry discovers outdoor wear and dresses up poofter models in the stuff. The mandala has turned again, and the boys are back. Those of us who actually, in the Wall Street Journal’s words, lobster, fish and hunt just keep on wearing the same stuff because it works. So next year, we’ll have the same clothes we’ve been wearing for thirty years. The Nancy Boys will have an entirely useless wardrobe.


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Cool – cyber war against Iran

Following up on Thursday’s post, there’s this: 30,000 Iranian computers infected.

Stuxnet, which was first publicly identified several months ago, is aimed solely at industrial equipment made by Siemens that controls oil pipelines, electric utilities, nuclear facilities and other large industrial sites. While it is not clear that Iran was the main target — the infection has also been reported in Indonesia, Pakistan, India and elsewhere — a disproportionate number of computers inside Iran appear to have been struck, according to reports by computer security monitors.

The virus does not spread through the Internet but requires a USB drive to be physically plugged into the computer, allowing it to attack machines that are disconnected from the Internet, usually in an effort to protect them. That requires human access to the affected systems.

How did we (or Israel) get to 30,000 computers?


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Jibes with my own experience


SCIENCE: Study: Men Don’t Notice Women’s Shoes Or Handbags. Of course not — those are for impressing other women.

I don’t believe I’ve noticed a woman’s shoes or handbag ever – not once.


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But obviously, these aren’t real jobs

One hundred thousand will lose their jobs next week when Stimulus funds expire. Of course I feel for these folks, but how long can we subsidize non-jobs?


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Turns out, those Christian Scientists were on to something

Mammograms not as effective as thought.


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Does this make any kind of sense?

Connecticut taxpayers pay far more to the federal government that the state gets back, so news that we have received a federal grant of $2 million for beetle control and forest fire prevention doesn’t stir my bones. If we kept the money here in the first place we, or Hartford, could decide how to spend it, rather than the goons down in D.C. Sure, we have goons in Hartford, but they’re our goons.

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Dang! How are we Greenwich residents to protect ourselves?

Fearful of being tasered by cops, man doused himself with paint. It didn’t work – they zapped him twice anyway, and down he went.

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Unintended consequences: we get rid of phone booths and college students turn to other pursuits


Canadian engineering student creates man-powered airplane.

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We can’t kill them all

But it’s fun to try. NYT: scores of Taliban killed in two separate strikes.


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GHS teacher advances to final four in “Best Teacher” contest

Rita Baker teaches German and French at the high school and we’re lucky to have her. I graduated with Rita in 1971 but while I was skipping Herr Oblaum’s German class to play chess in the student center* Rita was in there actually learning something.

* okay, sometimes you might have found me in the woods


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Nice price

52 Fairfield Road

This is an excellent house on Fairfield Road (which runs just north of the high school and Country Day). The current owners paid $2.4 million for it in 2006, poured a ton of money into it and then, 2 1/2 years ago in the spring of 2008 attempted to resell it for $2.895. That didn’t work so its price has been steadily whittled away and yesterday was reduced to $1.995, which matches its assessment; that would be, I remind you, 70% of its estimated 2005 market value. I think it’s a bargain, now.


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And we need these people why?

Greenwich: park rangers here to stay. I don’t begrudge a couple of retirees a $15 an hour gig, but by everyone’s admission, they aren’t needed, and the Parks Department is scurrying to define a “mission” to justify the position and, naturally, expand the force to eight. It should save its time and our money – this was a political response to a few vocal locals, and should just sink beneath the waves.

Among his other concerns about the position, which paid $15 an hour, was what Novakowski said was a lot of down-time during slow periods on the island such as weekdays.

“There really was, it seemed, nothing to do,” Novakowski said.

Tom Harrington, a former nationally known college basketball referee and island regular from Cos Cob who worked as a ranger, said he would spend idle time serving as an ambassador.

“You can create things for yourself, walking around and talking to folks,” Harrington said. “They’re talking to a friend. That gives them a little confidence that the people of Greenwich are pretty nice and we welcome everyone out to the beach as long as they behave themselves.”

Harrington said his two-plus-week experience on the island was uneventful — in a good way.

“I think it went great,” said Harrington, who took credit for promoting the ranger program to the town. “I talked to a lot of people and they said it was wonderful.”

Complaints about conditions on the island before the program was put in place ranged from loud music and foul language to beach-goers washing chickens in the bathroom sinks there before barbecuing them.

“The fact of the matter is, outside of July 4, there was nothing to talk of as far as (poor) behavior is concerned,” Harrington said.

Harrington said that having park rangers is cost-effective for the town, which spent about $2,300 on the trial program.

“Having rangers saves the town an awful lot of money because having police out there is very expensive,” Harrington said.

Siciliano said Harrington and fellow ranger Donald Brown are welcome to apply for the position next year if they meet the qualifications of the revised job description, but won’t get a leg up in the hiring process.

“We haven’t eliminated them, but we haven’t qualified them for anything we might do in the future because we haven’t come up with the job descriptions,” Siciliano said.

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Coates testimony on DOJ’s quashing investigation into New Black Panther case makes front page on the Washington Post

Once again, the New York Times will soon find itself explaining to readers why a story it never reported is “suddenly” significant. Readers who, like FWIW’s own “Red”, will be surprised – “but, but, if it’s not in the New York Times, it never happened, did it?”

A veteran Justice Department lawyer accused his agency Friday of being unwilling to pursue racial discrimination cases on behalf of white voters, turning what had been a lower-level controversy into an escalating political headache for the Obama administration.
Bias led to ‘gutting’ of New Black Panthers case, Justice official says
Probe in New Black Panther case
Why the silence on the Black Panther Party story?
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Christopher Coates’s testimony before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights was the latest fallout from the department’s handling of a 2008 voter-intimidation case involving the New Black Panther Party. Conservatives and some congressional Republicans accuse Justice officials of improperly narrowing the charges, allegations that they strongly dispute.
Filed weeks before the Obama administration took office, the case focused on two party members who stood in front of a polling place in Philadelphia on Election Day 2008, one carrying a nightstick. The men were captured on video and were accused of trying to discourage some people from voting.
Coates, former head of the voting section that brought the case, testified in defiance of his supervisor’s instructions and has been granted whistleblower protection. Coates criticized what he called the “gutting” of the New Black Panthers case for “irrational reasons,” saying the decision was part of “deep-seated” opposition among the department’s leaders to filing voting-rights cases against minorities and cases that protect whites.
“I had people who told me point-blank that [they] didn’t come to the voting rights section to sue African American people,” said Coates, who transferred to the U.S. attorney’s office in South Carolina in January. “When you are paid by the taxpayer, that is totally indefensible.”
The rare spectacle of a Justice Department lawyer publicly rebuking the department’s leaders came amid heightened legal and political fallout from the case. The commission is to issue a report on the matter next month, and an internal probe by the department’s Office of Professional Responsibility is pending.


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