Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Indiana Law II

Apparently the Governor of Indiana is either ignorant of the newly passed and signed law, the Religious Freedom Reformation Act, or is trying to whitewash the backlash to it, because all he says isn't what the laws says.

Governor Pence says it doesn't allow discrimination, which is not true by the letter or the intent of the law. The law states the government must prove if a person, meaning person(s), business, corporation, etc., discriminated against a person by refusing to provide or sell products or service that the said action was not a substantial burden with the excercise of the person's religious believes or faith and was not in keeping their religion or their practice of religion.

In short, the burden is on the government to prove the discrimination by the intent of the individual and the interpretation of their religion or practice of their religion, which by definition is so broad and ambigious as to be meaningless.

The law does in fact legalize discrimination simply by allowing the individual to say it was in keeping with their understanding, interpretation and practice of their religion, believe or faith. The law does not define or indentify any specific classes of people, acts by people or religions of people, and therefore leaves it to the individual and the government to prove otherwise.

It simply gives the people the right to say no because they can and call it a substantial burden on the exercise of their religion, and the government would have to prove the opposite, and that's only if the government wants to pursue a case, or they can simply decide not to investigate or even prosecute.

That's what the law does. But it could equally backfire on the conservative Christians who wanted the law by allowing other people to legally discriminate against them and the goverment would have to protect their right to discriminate as it would a Christian.

Good luck there Indiana. I'm hoping non-Christians decide to use it to equally discriminate to show the absurdity of the law. It's the old adage, you reap what you sow.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Indiana Law

If you don't believe the new Indiana "religious freedom" protection law, you should read the law and then decide. It doesn't limit itself to LGBT people and could be used to discriminate for a whole range of racial, ethinic, religious, sexuality, gender, and on down the line of rights currently guarranteed by federal laws and the US Constitution.

The law doesn't not specify religious freedom from LGBT people, which is its primary focus, and something I think the gay community has wrongly hijacked in their fight for rights. It could be applied to women's reproductive healthcare, to other religious minorities, to racial minorities, to gender identity people, etal.

In short, the bill allows businesses to discriminate if the owners feel providing products or service to customers they don't like and which causes "substantially burden a person's exercise of religion", without actually defining the burden the owners feel the individual(s) impose on them and their religious practices.

This means a pharmacist could lawfully refuse to stock or fill prescriptions for contraceptives or other drugs for women to prevent pregnancies or deal with an unwanted pregnancy. This happened in this (WA) state where the state pharmacy board ruled against pharmacists who refused to provide products to women.

This law is so ambiguous that it even could backfire on Christians who supported and wanted this law to protect themselves against people they don't like because other people who don't agree with Christians or Christianity could refuse to provide products or services to Christians.

I rarely get into these arguments about laws because you never win them, and only end up shouting your view against someone's opposing view without actually hearing them, let alone listening and talking about the issues, the law in this case.

But this time, the law is clearly aimed at giving cover to the conservative Christians because of their hate, and all the political rhetoric about it from Republicans can't white wash the legal stink of it. I doubt it will be repealed, and I don't think any "clarifing language" will make it stink any less.

It's a travesty by the Republicans in Indiana to show exactly why the people of Indiana should vote them out of office in 2016.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Two Types

There are two types of landscape or nature photographers, those who capture and present realism and those who capture and present the absurd. Either you want people to see what you saw standing there or you want people to see something that looks pretty.

Says it all

This from the New York Times today (3/26/14) says it all about Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu:

Israel’s president on Wednesday officially handed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu the task of forming a new government, saying its first priority was to repair relations with the United States and indirectly chiding Mr. Netanyahu for Election Day warning that Arab citizens were flocking to polling places in “droves.”

“One who is afraid of votes in a ballot box will eventually see stones thrown in the streets,” the president, Reuven Rivlin, said as he ceremonially received the certified results of last week’s election. Later, standing next to Mr. Netanyahu, he described “a difficult election period” in which “things were said which ought not to be said — not in a Jewish state and not in a democratic state.”

It's clear he wants to energize the conservative base and agenda in the 2016 election to elect a Republican president. We should not tolerate the leader of a foreign country interfering with our election process and so blatantly chastising the President for his foreign policy with Iran.

I'm also angry the President didn't make this point when Netanyahu spoke before Congress with a speech meant to incite his political base in Israel. It's clear a Republican President will likely follow what Netanyahu does in Israel with the Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza and with Israeli-Arabs in Israel.

One failure I've seen with President Obama is that he doesn't speak openly to criticize people who take such obviously political actions and make such obvious divisive speeches. He always tries to find a way to express his criticism focused on the content of their words or actions while he misses the point of the act or speech itself.

It's clear this won't end until the November 2016 election and who is elected President. Let's hope whoever is elected takes a fair, balanced approach to the Arab-Israeli situation in the Middle East and especially Israel. We are the enemy of many Arabs because of what Isreal does and what Israel does needs to change.

It's time Israel understands the US can't accept such extreme views or acts by the Israeli government against Palestinians or against another foreign country, and the US can't keep providing diplomatic cover and providing military aid in support of such views or acts.

Palestinians deserve a homeland just like Israelis have theirs.

Monday, March 23, 2015


Why people hate the healthcare system in the U.S. is not because it’s bad, expensive or whatever reasons many politicians cite. It’s because it takes so fucking long to see a doctor and then see any specialists while you’re actually in pain or hurting.
When it takes weeks to just get to have a doctor listen to you, then weeks for tests, and then weeks before another one actually diagnose your problem and prescribe a treatment, you know why everyone hates it so fucking much!
Fix the time it takes to get healthcare, then fix everything else about it!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Century Link

Last fall Century Link changed their e-mail service to require all outgoing e-mail to be routes through their servers. You could use another outgoing e-mail server as your host but it couldn’t send mail through that SMTP server, only Century Link’s SMTP servers. 
They wanted to control all outgoing e-mail to eliminate spammers and bulk mailers, but instead of focusing on just the few high volume e-mail senders which they can determine, they forced the change on all their customers. Big Brother couldn’t be more proud to monitor and control people than that.
And today, their e-mail servers went down big time. No one can send e-mail, period. All mail from their accounts are bounced and all mail via other hosts through their servers doesn’t get sent. Nothing. Absolutely nothing gets out.
Nice going Century Link. And if you use Century Link telephone and DSL lines or use them as your ISP, you’re screwed because you’re not getting service and you’re paying for it too. I'm not a fan of Century Link anymore, although their technicians have provided great service, but the alternative is Xfinity, aka Comcast, whom I hate more than Century Link.
The lesson is to keep a separate, not a Century Link, e-mail account on your cellphone or tablet and use wifi or cellphone provider to send e-mail through your e-mail providers SMTP servers. Something I learned with this outage.

Friday, March 13, 2015

F-1 App and Website Pt II

Well, I used the Formula 1 app for Friday's (Melbourne time) practice, in part because the Website version didn't have the free basic live timing available, as last year's Website version had for viewers in a simple, straight-forward presentation.

The app and Website versions are very similar, which means both are overblown visual presentations which takes a lot to find the information you want and it's still presented in a more visual and informational format, a lot like the NFL and MLB Websites.

This meant it's lots of show and hype to make the user navigate to find the information. I'm still angry you have to buy two subscriptions if you want both, but I can't see why you need the app if the Website version works with any browser on any platform, computer, tablet or phone.

What's interesting is that the live timing has tons of information, but it's on an array of screens with lots of toggles to switch information, and while that's handy, the one most useful is the leaderboard, but it's still overdone with visuals compared to last year's more text based presentation.

I also found the race and track information less informative than last year's version. I haven't gone through the Website version since I haven't bought the subscription, a dumb more on my part to buy the app subscription first and find it doesn't apply to the Website version.

I'll do some more playing with it, but mostly I'll use the live timing for the practice and especially the races, which is all I want to know, outside of the schedule and the race and season results, which is free for anyone through the Website version

In short, for now, skip the app, which is going through updates frequently, and either use the free features or buy the brower version. It's more flexible, and despite still being clunky for people who liked last year's Website, it's better and even slightly easier than the app version.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

F-1 App and Website

I've been a fan of Formula One since the early 1960's seeing races in Germany. And I liked the Formula One Website for the last few years with the live timing. This season, which started today in Melbourne, Australia, Formula One rolled out their new app and Website.

This is truly a WTF moment where they bring it on-line with the first practice of the first race of the season and it doesn't work, or at least some of the Website, like the free live timing, isn't available, but the subscription version is, for $27 (US) a year or $3 per month.

But then they have the app too through the Apple App Store, but it requires a subscription to get anything, and yes, for the same price of $27 per year or $3 per month. But there's a kicker to this which really sucks.

The subscriptions are separate! 

You can buy either one but it doesn't work for the other one. Really, you get the app or the Website for one subscription but not one for both. That's $54 for the year or $6 a month for both if you want to get the information from either source than just one.

Really F-1? Talk about ripping off the customer. I'd like to think I'm missing something, but I can't see it as the app is through the Apple App Store and doesn't link to the Formula 1 Website. The app doesn't have a sign in account to sync with the Website.

I did buy the app version for the iPad so I can watch the practice and the race and keep the app open for information. I might resort to the free live timing for the Website if it's better but it's not available right now.

The problem with the app is that it's lots of information in all sorts of screens and settings, and worth the subscripton if you're a F-1 junkee, but I couldn't get the information to sort right and the touch commands didn't always work.

Sometimes it's my touch and the iPad don't always work together, but it doesn't work with a iPad pencil. You have to play with it to learn to get the information you want, and sometimes it's just not there, like the team names than the car picture which is too small to distinguish unless you remember who drives for what team.

Anyway, that's my initial impression, which is mostly it's a ripoff to get you to pay twice for the app and the Website subscription. They should find a way to combine the subscriptions so people can choose which to use at any time watching the practice or race.

But then I forget, Bernie Eccelstone is less interested in racing and even less with fans than with making more money because he's part owner of the company which owns the international broadcast rights. Yes, it's about the almighty profit.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

What I know

Here's what I know about bluetooth with iPhones and iPads. I have the first generation iPad running IOS 5 and an iPad Air running IOS 8, and both will connect with my Mac Pro running OS-X 10.10.2 via bluetooth. The iPad Air now connects first time and stay connected. The iPad takes a few tries but once connected stays connected.

But my iPhone 5s running IOS 8 won't connect with my Mac Pro, and while folks have suggested it's a hardware problem, it worked with every version of IOS 7, which means it's a software problem introduced with IOS 8 which was written for iPhone 6-series models.

The iPhone 5s has never worked with any version of IOS 8 despite reported problems and reported fixes by Apple developers, but each version still doesn't work. The latest version doesn't even try to connect with the Mac Pro.

So why do I get the feeling Apple has decided iPhone 5-series models isn't their future and their only answer to us is to buy an iPhone 6 model, which I don't want because I like the size of the iPhone 5s since I have an iPad Air for a larger, and better, idevice to work on than an iPhone 6.

The only way I'll upgrade is if Apple makes an iPhone 5-size iPhone 6, and I'll wait until my AT&T contract is up to renew with one. AT&T gave me the iPad Air free for upgrading the iPhone 4 to a 5s. Really, but it's a two-year contract.

I've been an AT&T mobile customer since the 1990's when I had an analog (brick) phone, so they know I'm a, maybe stupidly, loyal customer. I just want Apple to fix bluetooth instead of announcing fixes they know don't work. How about it Apple? It worked before.

Any Ideas

Update II.-- The lab results came back on two of these to be aggregated bacteria, amorphous tissue and degenerative plant tissue. In short intestinal garbage, neatly packaged and ready to ship. Go figure.

Update.--I had an appointment with my physician and they gave me sample preservative jars to collect one of these for a lab to run pathology tests to determine what, and likely what type of virus, these tissue masses are. And yes, one is going to the lab soon.

I learned there are no blood test to determine if an infection is bacterial or viral in nature, only the white blood cell count to distinguish between them (high is bacterial, low is viral). I also read a test is under clinical trials which can identify viruses in blood samples, but it's 1-2 years from FDA approval and longer for availability by labs.

Original Post (1/11/2015).--This is what has been causing my intestinal flu. Yeah, this pill sized something. It started in November after I had the seasonal flu for nearly three weeks followed by a few days of feeling good to come down with the intestinal flu.

What many professionals will tell you and all the medical Websites don't say is that some people have the opposite symptoms and effects with the intestinal flu, meaning moderate to severe constipation and adverse reactions to food instead of diarrhea, etc.

This has been a long standing problem with me for decades when I first showed this opposite effect with the flu in the early 1980's and the gastroenterologist then said they had a few cases and it would likely be permanent. It was.

Having the intestinal flu after the seasonal has been reported to be common as your digestive system and immue system are compromised. The flu lasted nearly 3 weeks to suddenly stop and feel normal after expelling a few of these over a period of a day.

When I say normal, well that's relative as I have food sensitivities and live on a varied but narrow diet, but that almost completely changed in December where I lost old foods and gained new foods. I had the flu a few times in December and all but two days in January so far since getting over the first episodes.

The flu since November lasts 4-5 days at the end of which one of these is expelled (clue - they float and easily recognizable as they look like a large pill).  And as you can see they're relatively large (that's a tongue  depressor).

Within a few minutes all the symptoms of the flu disappear and the digestive system and body is and feels normal again. In December the good periods lasted over a week before it started again but in January, I've had two episodes since New Year's day.

Since this is the one common thread to causing and ending the episodes of the intestinal flu, I'm open to ideas as to what the hell it is.  If you cut into it it's pink inside like a hard candy with a soft, almost mushy center.

Right now I seem to come down with the flu shortly resuming walks for my exercise progam or running errands in a lot of places around town, meaning cold weather and places with people (walks are for trips to stores, etc in town).

And since New Year's day I've only walked one day (normally 6-8 miles 15-20 days a month) because of the flu leaving me sick. They've said the flu season is worse this year and the flu vacine isn't as effective (wrong type) which might explain why people seem to be more susceptible this year.

While I seem to be good at fighting colds and the seasonal flu, I seem to be coming down with the intestinal flu often which makes me wonder if it's more persistent this year, especially in a host, or just more people (carriers) walking around infecting people, like me.

Anyway, take your shot at what you think.