Monthly Archives: May 2005

Computer problems

And of course, now that I reboot my server (I had turned it off to disconnect the monitor cable to install the KVM switch) I get problems. The server boots normally, but just as it gets to the login screen it reboots and the Bios then displays “Disk boot failure, Insert System Disk and press enter”. The server had been going for several weeks between reboots.

Ideas anyone? I seem to recall the last time this happened it was a memory problem, which could be the case. That CPU/mobo/ram is pretty ancient. The hard drive is only 10 months old though.

A new KVM switch

I just saw this D-Link KVM (Keyboard, Video and Mouse) as a “Deal of the Day” and I have to say, it works very well. I was pleasantly surprised to find that it came with six foot cables (I think the average is 3 foot cables). I can finally have more room for all of my other stuff on that desk in my office.

Affordable Family Formation

This article by Steve Sailor (via Mickey Kaus) is will worth reading. Put simply, it explains the current American Red State/Blue State gap largely in terms of self selection and children. It’s much more expensive to have children in a blue (Democratic) state compared to a red (Republican) State. Throw in some freedom of movement and self selection and you’ve got a bifurcated America.

A few quibbles. He seems to throw in Atlanta as a “Red City” which is very much not the case. While metro Atlanta is a very red metro area, the city itself is quite blue. Also, the areas with the most recent and illegal immigrants (here in the Atlanta metro area anyway) seem to be the most Republican areas, which is seemingly at odds with his theory.

He also does not mention the Roe Effect, payroll taxes, the total tax burden, the actual cost of a mortgage (I got the full spiel from my mortgage broker when I refinanced, the cost of the mortgage itself can really vary quite a bit.)

On the whole, well worth reading though.

A good article from Landsburg

I stumbled across this on Cafe Hayek.

“Diversity” has always been my least favorite Shibboleth of the left. In fact, nothing else even comes close, although the right wing habit of appending “of faith” at the end of ever sentence is rapidly closing catching up.

That was why I liked this piece by Steven Landsburg. Initial Paragraph:

I was invited to speak about “diversity” to an audience of about 80 students, roughly half black and half white. Most of the blacks sat on the left side of the room and most of the whites sat on the right—as good an indication as any that nobody really cares very much about diversity.

How much of life is taken up with these self-conscious display of piety? If you removed all of the man-years that people have spent talking about “diversity”, “sexuality”, “culture of life”,”family values” I wonder what, if anything would be lost.

5-30-2005 Updated for Clarity (verb tense)

Not that happy with FeedDemon

After a full day’s worth of using the FeedDemon I’m switching back to Abilon. While FeedDemon actually functioned better in every respect, I dislike not being able to see all of the feeds at the same time. Tabbed browsing in the program is essential too. Oh well. I suppose Abilon can always improve with time.

Bolshevism and Islam

As an amplification of my earlier post about Saudi influence on modern Islamic culture. Throw in a bit of Bryan Caplan and Eric Hoffer, and I’m closer having better thoughts on the subject.

To wit, the problem is the merging of state, society, economy and religion into a single unit. The most obvious parallel is pre-revolution Russia, with the Saudi royal family playing the Romanovs, and bin Laden playing Lenin.

After Ivan the Terrible essentially annexed the Russian orthodox church and installed the Czar as head of the church (or maybe that was Peter the Great, I can’t remember), all authority, be it economic, political, or religious in Russia became ever more centralized in the person of the Czar. When Lenin seized power in 1917 he merely continued this process, finally culminating in Stalin.

All of this centralization basically discards useful information as revealed in action and prices per Hayek in the Fatal Conceit. One man does the thinking for millions, and the society is one millionth as smart as it could be. Could this be what is happening in the Arab world right now? Is the problem just lack of knowledge and power distribution, as it was in the Soviet era, and current North Korea?

As I read over this post I see it is very jumbled and unclear. I’ll explore more on this topic later.

RSS Readers

I’ve been using the free version of Abilon for a while. It’s very good at some things, the tabbed browsing inside the RSS program itself is especially nice, but it has the unpleasant habit of choking when it tries to update the feeds. Also it will sometimes “lose” feeds. No idea why that happens. I’m current experimenting with FeedDemon but it does not have tabbed browsing inside the program. I’ll keep my loyal readers posted on what I decide.

If only there were some kind of product placement and review system for the blogsphere!

The Saudis

There are currently unconfirmed reports that King Faud of Saudi Arabia is dead. This is not as momentous as it seems since he’s effectively been out of power for several years.

This leads me to wonder: How much of modern Islam is just Saudi quirks?

In comparison, if you gave one of the more radical environmental groups, say Earth First, 200 billion dollars a year starting in 1985 to spend on the “Movement” what would environmentalism be like now? I would imagine it would be more extreme, and much, much weirder since there would be no idea competition or moderating influences.