Monday, April 25, 2005

Uh oh …. Putie’s flipping out

Today’s news finds Russian president lamenting the fall of the Soviet Union. I kind of miss the old U.S.S.R. myself, but only because the James Bond series hasn’t been the same since the Cold War ended.

I’m sure this address will have prominent place on the agenda at the next State Department meeting.

Monday, April 11, 2005

But can he cover an Otis Redding tune?

Democrats opposing John Bolton’s confirmation as U.N. ambassador are criticizing him for being someone who, while willing to work with other nations, will take the hard line if he feels it’s in the United States’ best interests. I’m not sure why they’re so surprised: look at the philosophy of the guy who nominated him.

Besides, just because someone has been critical of an organization doesn’t mean he can’t work with it. And while we’re at it, imagine what a loss it would be to lose out on someone who could actually make a very important world organization better. But no … we’ll probably end up with a candidate who believes that if the majority of the U.N. Security Council supports something, it must be right.

I have no strong opinion on Bolton, himself, except it’s a bit disconcerting to keep reading “Bolton this” and “Bolton that” in news stories about the flap. I keep getting images of Michael Bolton as our ambassador to the U.N.

“How am I supposed to vote for this resolution …?”

Friday, April 08, 2005

Can't we all just get along?

Apparently, when you're a world leader at a beloved pope's funeral and the seating is alphabetical, you have to.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Beep … beep … beep ...

Here’s an interesting study: how many times have you set your alarm wrong (or forgotten to set it at all) and slept late as a result? How many times have you woken up on time anyway?

I bring this up because this morning, I rolled over and looked at the clock – only to discover I’d forgotten to turn the alarm on. I normally get up at 6:30 a.m. It was 6:38 a.m.

Be thankful for the little things until the big ones come around.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

...like a box of chocolates

For my friend who feels the fun in life is passing her by, for loved ones who scream that life isn't fair, for myself who thinks he can't do anything quite good enough this week, I offer the centuries-old wisdom of the poem below. (It is brought to wonderful musical life by Dead Can Dance on the CD I've provided a link to above.)

Fortune presents gifts not according to the book
Fortune presents gifts not according to the book
When you expect whistles it's flutes
When you expect flutes it's whistles

What various paths are followed in distributing honours and possessions
She gives awards to some and penitent's cloaks to others

When you expect whistles it's flutes
When you expect flutes it's whistles

Sometimes she robs the chief goatherd of his cottage and and goatpen
And to whomever she fancies the lamest goat has born two kids

When you expect whistles it's flutes
When you expect flutes it's whistles

Because in a village a poor lad has stolen one egg
He swings in the sun and another gets away with a thousand crimes

When you expect whistles it's flutes
When you expect flutes it's whistles

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

The Democratic Party: Alienating America one voter at a time

I don't know whether to swear or laugh. Maybe I'll do both.

Earlier today, a friend of mine sent me a link to a petition on the Democratic Web site regarding the filibuster-removal initiative now being considered by the U.S. Senate.

Now, regular readers of my blog probably have me correctly pegged as a political conservative. However, this whole idea of changing the filibuster procedure to suit one party really bugs me. So, I decided to go ahead and sign the petition.

I included this comment:

I've never liked the filibuster as a matter of procedure, but I stop short of thinking it should be abolished -- particularly when the procedural change would target just one type of deliberation.

I also think detractors of this measure are doing the debate a disservice by referring to it as "the nuclear option." That type of rhetoric benefits no one.

That said, I will add my name to this petition.


I immediately received the following automatically generated e-mail message:

Steve:

Thank you for taking action on Democrats.org. It's Democrats like you
who help us make a difference.

An account has been created for you on Democrats.org. To log into your
account, please click on the link below. If you did not create this
account, do not be concerned -- this information has been sent to this
email address only.

https://www.democrats.org/login/confirm_login.html?u=06138695&c=590b16a9

Here are a few more things you can do on Democrats.org:

Build Your Online Team: Help us build strength in numbers: create your
personal online team of friends, family, neighbors -- anyone you think
would be interested in the Democratic message. We'll send you inside
information from the Democratic Party, which you can pass on to your
team.

http://www.democrats.org/ecaptains/

Create Your Personal Democrats.org Webpage: Sign up to become a
grassroots fundraiser today. First, you'll create your own personal webpage on
Democrats.org. Then, tell your friends, send emails with a link to your
page, and urge people to visit and contribute. You can even see how
much you've raised.

http://www.democrats.org/epatriots/

Make a Contribution: We can't win without your support. Your dollars
allow us to fund our field programs, spread our positive message, and
fight back against Republican attacks.
https://www.democrats.org/support/index.html?dsc=NETA254

-- The DNC Internet Team

Well, as you can imagine, I was not thrilled. I sent this message to the Webmaster:

I am NOT a Democrat and resent VERY HIGHLY being labeled as one in your automatic response simply because I agree with you on the filibuster issue.

I really hope someone gets this, because it has crystallized my distrust of your party . That's sad, as this is the one time I decided to reach across party lines to voice my opinion.

--Steve Sykes


I wonder if I'll get a response.

Monday, April 04, 2005

"Oh, no! Don't delete me!" or "Whatever..."

I was checking my In-Box on my e-mail just now (not my Bulk Mail box, mind you, but my In-Box), was greeted by the following dire subject line:

"Your Tickle account will soon be deleted."

Now, this was news to me -- primarily because I didn't know I had a Tickle account. I began to think this was just a bit of spam, but I went ahead and opened the message and learned that I, in fact, did have an account with Tickle.com's predecessor, e-mode.com. However, I haven't logged into Tickle for a little over a year.

What can we learn from this? Well, somebody at Tickle dropped the ball at least a couple of times:

  1. I apparently wasn't told in memorable enough terms why e-mode was changing to Tickle, nor why it would benefit me to stay active with the new site.
  2. I also apparently wasn't engaged by Tickle in the past year -- at least not to any real, personal degree.
  3. When Tickle finally did realize I had fallen off the face of the earth, the best they could do was tell me I was about to be deleted. Look at the subject line again. Why on earth would anybody OPEN that?

And that, boys and girls, is your e-marketing thought for the day.

There was an error in this gadget