Archive for October 2007


Another Gem

Ace has a thread about Bush Derangement Admissions at DU. I think I see this differently:

After I actually took the trouble to inform myself about politics a couple years ago, and learned the true extent of the damage Bush has done to this country, I have a constant boiling rage inside me. Absolutely constant. Never ceases, though sometimes I can get it down to a simmer so I can go out in public and hang out with friends without doing something stupid. On top of the anger is a generous dose of fear and anxiety, coming directly from the Bush administration’s march to fascism.

I am a little more sympathetic to this guy, in that I think the only real difference between him and me is perspective.  Look closely at what he wrote:  “After I actually took the trouble to inform myself about politics a couple years ago…”  Bush is the only president this guy has actually paid attention to.  He didn’t pay attention to Clinton, or Bush 41, or Reagan, or Carter, or anyone.  See, he thinks that this is something new.  Maybe if we do end up with Hillary in office, people like him will realize how stupid it was to focus on Bush when they are all like this.

San Diego Wildfires

Note to the nation:

Global warming has nothing to do with these fires.

Illegal immigration has nothing to do with these fires, even if some of them may have been set by illegal immigrants.

Al Qaeda has nothing to do with these wildfires, even if the FBI did speculate four years ago that it would be really clever if they did.

When it hasn’t rained for a long time and you have high winds, wildfires happen.  Maybe the spread could have been slowed with more aggressive brush clearing, but it couldn’t have been prevented.

Keep fighting the good fight, HMT.

Another Bright Shining Line

Newton said Bixby told her later that night he knew officers would be coming to his parents’ house the next day to discuss the Highway 72 widening project the deadly dispute arose from. She said Bixby told her he would shoot any law enforcement agents who came on the land.”

I said ‘Steven, you wouldn’t do that, you wouldn’t shoot law enforcement,'” Newton said. “He looked at me so serious, it scared me. He said, ‘I will. If they step one foot on my parents’ property, I’ll blow their mother (expletive deleted) heads off.'”

Taylor offered perhaps the most damaging piece of evidence against Rita Bixby to date. The prosecution played an audiotape of a phone conversation between Taylor and Rita that occurred not long after Wilson and Ouzts were shot.

“Steve said, ‘Mom, if I can’t live free, then I might as well die,'” said Rita, on the tape. “Arthur and I feel the same way about it. We couldn’t talk him out of something when we feel the same way, too.â€?

The mother was convicted of, well, as near as I can tell, thoughtcrime.

Bixby wasn’t home at the time of the shootings, but she knew her husband and son planned violence against anyone who stepped on their land, prosecutor Jerry Peace said.

Bright shining lines are being crossed, and there are some people who will not let them be crossed with impunity. I am sorry that the police officers died, and I wouldn’t have resorted to violence at that stage… but I understand.

(Hat tip: Mexi)

Liberty-lovers Need Not Apply

Don’t I know it, brother.  Don’t I know it.

RTWT.  Start it about four years later, and it could have been my political autobiography.

Metadata and You

Drudge leaked a bunch of Beauchamp documents. I was lucky enough to get them downloaded before they were pulled. And I think I know why they were pulled.

In a modern law office, you do a lot of what is called “Electronic Data Discovery”. That is where you get your information from the other side in electronic form, instead of paper, especially if it was electronic to start with. You do this because paper doesn’t tell you all the wonderful, wonderful things that electronic files do. That is because electronic files almost always contain metadata, or “data about the data.” In some programs, like Microsoft Word and PDF, this data can be extensive. Any file has creation and modification dates, and Word and Acrobat also embed a system independent creation/modification date piece of metadata in the files.

The Beauchamp documents are three PDFs, entitled 1, 2, and 3. The metadata tells us that all were created on HP devices, probably multifunction copiers. They also tell us when they were created, and that is where the interesting things start to happen. First, these three files were created at two different times. 1&2, the Beauchamp call to TNR, were created on October 12. (Created meaning they were put on the copier and PDFs made.) 3, containing the report information, however, was created August 24, more contemporaneously with the original activity, and none of them appear to have been modified since their creation. (You can fake this data, but most people don’t know how.)

Here’s the fun part. PDF files also contain the time zone settings of the system that created it inside the creation and modification dates. The timezone offset for 1 and 2 is +3 UTC. That, ladies and gentlemen, is likely to be Iraq, Kuwait, or Qatar. Those are the files with the interview. 3, containing the investigation results, is +4 UTC. That would put it in Oman or the U.A.E. This is consistant with these being Army documents. The question is whether or not these came straight from the Army, or if this is how they were transmitted to the law office and leaked from there.

The Most Metal Reporter of the Day

This guy is a warrior.  That is as stoic as it gets.

(Michael J. Totten, Mike Yon and Pat Dollard still have to have a No-ropes barbed wire exploding three-way-dance deathmatch for Most Metal Reporter on the Planet.)