Personal Note

I’m sorry the site has been down for the last couple of days. I had some difficulties renewing my domain name registration but all is good now. I wish more companies were as good as in resolving customer service complaints. After I posted a message to their trouble ticket section, they had responded AND fixed the domain registration within 24 hours!

Also, if you sent any email to during the last few days, please resend it as it was likely lost. Thanks!

News & Opinion

    The first two stories deal with religious persecution in two of America’s “allies in the war against terror.” Sheesh, what a joke! Can I vomit now? How in the world can the US be in bed with two of the world’s most blatant violators of human rights, and then dare to lecture the Taliban on human rights? Am I the only one who smells something rancid here?

    (Oh, and don’t think I support the Taliban. I am glad that the US is criticizing them and taking steps to restore freedom to Afghanistan. I just can’t stand the two-faced approach that we have.)

  • NY Times: Foreign Followers of Falun Gong Held by Police in Beijing Protest
  • NY Times: For Outsiders, Worship Is Risk in Saudi Arabia
  • NY Times: As Drug Use Drops in Big Cities, Small Towns Confront Upsurge

    Experts in rural crime agree that the reasons Mr. Brown cited are some of the basic causes of the growth in rural drug use and crime.

    “You have many rural areas that are persistent poverty areas, in essence rural ghettos,” said Joseph Donnermeyer, professor of rural sociology at Ohio State University. “They were once isolated and were protected by that, with lower crime, but now better communications have broken down that buffer so they begin to resemble poor neighborhoods of big cities, where people are segregated by poverty.”

  • MSNBC: States offer tax credits as alternative to vouchers – This is a very good idea IMHO, as it lets people get help in paying for private school tuition w/o cutting funds that would go for public education.
  • NY Times: Antismoking Group Sues to Preserve an Ad Campaign’s Tone

    Lorillard was enraged by a radio advertisement contending that it flavors cigarettes with urea, a chemical found in urine, and it threatened to sue the foundation last month for breaching the $206 billion settlement between tobacco companies and 46 states. Under the agreement, the tobacco companies agreed to give the foundation $1.5 billion over five years to educate the public about the risks of smoking and to discourage young people from picking up the habit.

    The foundation’s campaign included a television commercial that showed body bags in front of Philip Morris’s headquarters and a newspaper advertisement depicting corpses in morgues. The tactics have worked, researchers at the University of Michigan said. In the last five years they have contributed to a 42 percent drop in smoking among eighth graders, the researchers said.

    In return for its tobacco money, the foundation is barred from engaging in “any personal attack on, or vilification of” a tobacco company or its employees. The foundation says it does not malign anyone but only states the “truth,” as its advertising campaign is called. Lorillard, a unit of the Loews Corporation, scoffed at that contention in a letter to the foundation last month, promising to curb the “deceitful, callous, malicious” group in court. In particular it wants future spots toned down.