This Space for Rent

Jan 31, 2005

New Code!

Postoffice has been pushed up to version 1.1.3. This version adds vm-pop3d-style virtual domain support, fixes a potentially nasty bug with /etc/alias expansions into programs (I was not setuid'ing away from root to execute those programs because I was passing uid = -1 to setreuid()), adds an option to allow clients to give almost any address as an argument to MAIL FROM:, and puts a hack in to allow multiple simultaneous connections from localhost because a certain mailing list program written in p*th*n has the bizarre behavior trying to open a separate connection to the smtp server for every message (and this is talking to the mail server on the machine where the CMLPWiP is running, so they don't even have the excuse of not wanting to sort the addresses they are mailing to), and if any of those connections fail with a 4xx status, the stupid program decides that none of the messages got out and they all need to be resent. Over and over and over and over, until I put the "stupid p*th*n denial-of-service hack" in to allow denial of service attacks from localhost.

But, aside from the bugs, the virtual domain code is fairly spiffy. Postoffice uses the dns to figure out what the machine is known as, so it doesn't need any special code to accept mail. So all I needed was to add the code to read passwords and aliases out of the virtual domain directories, and to write mail into virtual domain mailboxes. The first pass at it was a pretty gross bit of manual hackery, with implicit knowledge of more stuff than I care to think about and lots of duplicated except for a line or two code (sometimes in the same function, and switched by a isvhost() function that did lots of strcasecmps(), but after getting it working, I went back and ripped all the code out in favor setting up mail domains; When Postoffice decides that a piece of mail should be delivered locally, it calls the function getdomain(), which returns a magic domain pointer which is then passed as an argument to the functions

the password file for this domain.
the alias file for this domain.
the mailbox for a user in this domain.

This meant that a whole bunch of the special case code I needed to put in (all of it constantly checking isvhost(u->domain)) just went away, and when it went away it also swept out some of the magic constant code that was in the original non-virtual-domain code. There are still some special cases (in a virtual domain, the alias '*' matches everything, while in domain 0 -- the standard Un*x domain -- '*' is simply a alias that will never match because postoffice won't allow '*' as a username, and when I'm logging alias loops I need to show the virtual domain part of the alias to avoid confusing system administrators) but all of this code, including debugging, new manpages and the horrible warts for alias loops, is only 497 lines longer than version 1.1.1 is.

I'm pleased with it. Maybe for the next release I'll catch up on the documentation.


Jan 28, 2005

New Code!

I've pushed Postoffice up to version 1.1.3dr1 by fixing a couple of annoying name resolution bugs and by starting to add support for vm-pop3d virtual domains. This is very much experimental code that's not running anywhere except pell (and which is likely to be revised over the next couple days, children and influenza allowing), but the grand plan is that it will be used to replace the horrible nest of bodges I've had to stick into sendmail to do the same thing.

Friday Dust Mite Blogging™

Going for a walk in the eye garden.

Jan 27, 2005

Balls, bobos, bridges

We went up to darkest Washington last week to go to a commercial playpark for Russell's little friend™ Aidan. Silas was particularly taken with a ball pit, and had to be pried away from the balls when it was time to leave.

On the way back, I took a bunch of pictures of the Interstate Bridge.

The real-life effects of the B*sh plan to privatize social security


And board

Jan 26, 2005

It’s not censorship, oh no it isn’t

... not if PBS withdraws the episode of Arthur all by themselves after the B*sh junta says it «does not fulfill the intent Congress had in mind for programming.»

What does not "fulfill the intent Congress had in mind" ? Why, that's easy. In the episode in question, one of the Arthur characters visits Vermont and, en passant, encounters a couple of legal in Vermont same-sex couples.

PBS assured the reporter that they were yanking distribution of this episode all by themselves, and not because the evil troll running the "Education" department, as her very first action after being appointed, sent out nastygrams about lifestyles.

«You can be assured that in the future the department will be more clear as to its expectations for any future programming that it funds.»? Why, this isn't a threat, not any more than the Mafia is threatening a storekeeper when they mention that it's a nice shop and it would be a shame if it burned down in the night.

(link via Ignatz)

New Trolley Line!

The city of Portland is building an extension to the downtown trolley line, to extend the line from Portland State University down to the nasty California-style high-density development at where the Red Electric Jefferson Street station used to be many many years ago. Since I'm not working in the middle of downtown any more, I don't get very many chances to watch the construction (when we moved to Portland, the Hillsboro interurban was being built, and we would walk down Morrison to our jobs in the Bank of America building -- I'm working 4 blocks away from the new trolley line, so I never think of going out there to see how close to being finished they are.) But sometime last week, pell decided to just crash for no apparent reason, so I had to go into downtown to reboot it. When I walked back to work, I stopped and took a picture of the new line.

From PSU, the trolley line runs down Harrison towards the river, and after it crosses front it drops down an 8% grade to reach the old Red Electric line, which will apparently be rewired so that the streetcars can go into the New! Fancy! Development! in the ex-industrial park at the north end of Macadam.

The downtown streetcar web page says that they're buying three more Skoda cars to operate on this entension, which I think brings them up to 10 streetcars (8 Skoda Astras and two Gomaco "vintage PCCs"). Hopefully this means that they're going to replace the leisurely 15 minute headways with something more appropriate to a downtown circulator line.

1 comment

Jan 25, 2005

If the shrillblog is still operational

They really need to induct Bottle of Blog after this classic we are sooo fucked!!! post.

And he's leaving out some of the fun side-effects of our foreign debt, like

  1. We can't go to war with China, because our economy would instantly crater without them buying US savings bonds, and
  2. If China starts requesting military secrets on threat of not buying US savings bond, the US has to cooperate unless Maximum Leader Genius's master plan is to have the US economy crater.

(I'm sure if I put on my conspirovision glasses I could think of many more unintentional effects of being in hock up past our eyebrows, but I'll leave that as an exercise for the reader. I wonder how much of the ridiculous price of streetcars is because of the US debt to the countries where we actually buy the streetcars from.)

… I really don’t like being lied to repeatedly, flagrantly, intentionally.

Senator Dayton, opposing the nomination of Condoleezza Rice as Secretary of State.

It is a pretty amazing kettle of rotten fish that run the United States. From making torture the law of the land to setting up death squads to encourage the Iraqi public, to simply lying about everything just because they can, there's not even a scrap of morals in this crop of criminals occupying the White House.

And people voted for these criminals. I have no doubt that Adolf Hitler is smiling and popping the cork from a bottle of champaign in his little corner of Hell, while Satan scurries around preparing the firepits for the 59 or so million people who voted for the Coward in Chief.

(via New Patriot)

No, no, the United States would never torture anyone….

... At least not according to our definition of torture.

According to the B*sh junta and their slimy grand inquistor appointee, cruel, inhuman, and degrading tactics are not torture. So, waterboarding, anal rape with broomsticks, tossing people into freezers with no clothes on, electric shocks, and beating people to death is not torture according to the government of the United States.

I have to ask just what do they think is torture? Honest elections? The 60 vote to break a filibuster rule? Same-sex marriage?

(article from The Mercury News, via Daily Kos)

What he said

Unprecedented times call for unprecedented actions. In this case, we, the undersigned bloggers, have decided to speak as one and collectively author a document of opposition. We oppose the nomination of Alberto Gonzales to the position of Attorney General of the United States, and we urge every United States Senator to vote against him.

As the prime legal architect for the policy of torture adopted by the Bush Administration, Gonzales's advice led directly to the abandonment of longstanding federal laws, the Geneva Conventions, and the United States Constitution itself. Our country, in following Gonzales's legal opinions, has forsaken its commitment to human rights and the rule of law and shamed itself before the world with our conduct at Guantanamo Bay and Abu Ghraib. The United States, a nation founded on respect for law and human rights, should not have as its Attorney General the architect of the law's undoing.

In January 2002, Gonzales advised the President that the United States Constitution does not apply to his actions as Commander in Chief, and thus the President could declare the Geneva Conventions inoperative. Gonzales's endorsement of the August 2002 Bybee/Yoo Memorandum approved a definition of torture so vague and evasive as to declare it nonexistent. Most shockingly, he has embraced the unacceptable view that the President has the power to ignore the Constitution, laws duly enacted by Congress and International treaties duly ratified by the United States. He has called the Geneva Conventions "quaint."

Legal opinions at the highest level have grave consequences. What were the consequences of Gonzales's actions? The policies for which Gonzales provided a cover of legality - views which he expressly reasserted in his Senate confirmation hearings - inexorably led to abuses that have undermined military discipline and the moral authority our nation once carried. His actions led directly to documented violations at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo and widespread abusive conduct in locales around the world.

Michael Posner of Human Rights First observed: "After the horrific images from Abu Ghraib became public last year, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld insisted that the world should 'judge us by our actions [and] watch how a democracy deals with the wrongdoing and with scandal and the pain of acknowledging and correcting our own mistakes.'" We agree. It is because of this that we believe the only proper course of action is for the Senate to reject Alberto Gonzales's nomination for Attorney General. As Posner notes, "[t]he world is indeed watching." Will the Senate condone torture? Will the Senate condone the rejection of the rule of law?

With this nomination, we have arrived at a crossroads as a nation. Now is the time for all citizens of conscience to stand up and take responsibility for what the world saw, and, truly, much that we have not seen, at Abu Ghraib and elsewhere. We oppose the confirmation of Alberto Gonzales as Attorney General of the United States, and we urge the Senate to reject him.

--Armando, from Daily Kos

(The list of signers is at Daily Kos.)

Jan 24, 2005

It’s okay if you’re a republican

Asked by Sen. Patrick Leahy to describe "in detail" the only court appearance he ever made on behalf of Bush, Gonzales—who was then chief counsel to the Texas governor—wrote that he had accompanied Bush the day he went to court "prepared to serve on a jury." While there, Gonzales wrote, he "observed" the defense lawyer make a motion to strike Bush from the jury panel "to which the prosecutor did not object." Asked by the judge whether he had "any views on this," Gonzales recalled, he said he did not.

Did not, in this case, includes having an off-the-record conferernce with the judge to get Maximum Leader Genius dismissed so he wouldn't have to admit his drunken driving conviction.

But Abu Gonzales is a Republican, so what's a deliberate lie or twenty? It's not as if the Evil Party expects that any of the Coward in Chief's minions will be even in the same state as honesty and/or good morals. The Evil Party claims to be the morality party. but they don't say what kind of morals.

And, yes, I fully expect that some Democrats will vote to confirm this moral abortion as Attorney General. He's certainly no different from any of the other human stains that Maximum Leader Genius is appointing to help fly this country into the mountainside.

(link via Atrios)

Jan 23, 2005

Ahh, just the headline I want to read at the start of the week

Global Warming Approaching Point of No Return, Warns Leading Climate Expert

This particular Leading Climate Expert is one that the B*sh junta installed after removing one who was not toeing the "don't worry, be happy" Evil Party line. So when he says things like "We are risking the ability of the human race to survive", it should probably be taken every bit as seriously as when one of those pesky reality-based liberal scientists starts nattering about runaway global warming.

And, as much as I'd like to see the thrice-damned Coward in Chief and his flying monkeys disappear beneath the waves along with all of their now-worthless money, the prospect becomes a little less appealing if I end up disappearing beneath the waves with them.

(link via A Tiny Revolution)

Jan 22, 2005

Let Freedom™ reign

Flag high, ranks closed,
The GOP marches with silent solid steps.
Comrades shot by the blue front and reaction
march in spirit with us in our ranks.

The street free for the brown battalions, The street free for the Promise Keepers. Millions, full of hope, look up at the cross; The day breaks for freedom and for bread.

For the last time the call will now be blown; For the struggle now we all stand ready. Soon will fly Bush-flags over every street; Slavery will last only a short time longer.

Flag high, ranks closed, The GOP marches with silent solid steps. Comrades shot by the blue front and reaction march in spirit with us in our ranks.

(original lyrics by Horst Wessel)

Silly Quiz of the Evening

You scored as Lawful Good. A lawful good person acts as a good person is expected or required to act. They are dedicated to upholding both what is right and what is set down in law.
What is your Alignment?
created with

Lawful Good, or Go-Go girl? Hmm, can I be both?

Jan 21, 2005

Friday Dust Mite Blogging™

Silas caught black death, too.


Jan 20, 2005

Threats to the American Way™

Spongebob bin Laden

Tinky Hussein

(images from the BBC)

You know the drill

Not my president.

Not my country.

Not One Damn Dime Day

May or may not be a good idea, but, lord, there are some people whining about it. What's the point? Why stop consuming when you could be doing something important instead?

Well, when the general strike (or civil war, but that's probably a decade away) happens then perhaps the more pedestrian strikes against the B*sh junta won't be that important, but until then it's kind of dumb to stop people from objecting in their own way. The only way that Not One Damn Dime Day would be useless would be if it people didn't buy anything, then turned around and dumbly allowed the Coward in Chief to continue destroying what used to be a moderately functional republic.

The tiny subtle protest of leaving the country and depriving the B*sh junta of my tax money is not likely to be noticed in the middle of the massive flurry of check kiting that is now going on. Eventually it will be noticed, but given that the whole idea is to reduce the United States into a penniless banana republic (think Venezuela, but with a majority white population) it's not as if it will be an issue (the rentiers are already moving their money offshore in preparation for the collapse of the US dollar and subsequent fire sale to people who can show up with hard currency from states that have not redefined economic collapse) that will bother anyone except people who don't want to underwrite torturers.

But the tiny subtle effect of a day where cashbox receipts goes down a noticeable amount. particularly in states which are already being sucked dry by the Evil Party, well, that might encourage people to keep thinking of ways to take the country back from the dark lord. And when the deep thinkers on the left think of a better way of protesting the overthrow of the United States, well, that's a good time to start whining about Not One Damn Dime Day.

Jan 19, 2005

There may actually be a G-d

This is Washington, DC, today. For the wrath of G-d, it's pretty weak, but pillar-of-saltification just doesn't seem to be the fashionable way of expressing divine disapproval any more.

(image via Rox Populi)

Jan 18, 2005

Frontiers of advertising

Looking for something on Google™? How about getting two completely unrelated advertising links as part of your results?

Danziger hits another home run

and there's more where this came from

Jan 16, 2005

Random play? What’s that?

Mouse Words posted about some silly show-your-music-list.

Step (2) of the rules is Set to random play

Oh, now that's a laugh. We listen to our music collection in a variety of ways, from plugging the CDs into (what's left of our) stereo system, to using the foobar2000 windows audio player (which may do random play, but first I need to load 20-odd gb worth of .oggs into it; the copy of foobar 2000 I've got on my home workstation doesn't really want to do that, and just grinds to a stop while loading the music in), to using a nc*rs*s-based jukebox program on the oggOmatic.

None of these options do random in a particularly useful fashion.

So, to set to random play I grabbed the source for a randomiser program (one that was carefully gpled, but which intuitively picked data out of /dev/random to seed the random number generator. This approach doesn't work too well with the version of FreeBSD that is running on my home music server. But I was able to figure out a workaround) and then listed all the .ogg files, piped through this randomiser, and picked off the first 10 lines.

  1. Now She's Gone -- Steve Earle
  2. Concerto #5 BWV 1040 in D major (pt 3) -- Bach
  3. Allez-Vous -- Kate & Anna McGarrigle
  4. That's Right -- Lyle Lovett
  5. Teacher Teacher -- Rockpile
  6. Right to Choose -- David Byrne
  7. Medicine Show -- Big Audio Dynamite
  8. Music So Nice -- UB40
  9. Pato And Roger A Go Talk -- the Beat
  10. Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard -- Paul Simon

Eventually I'm going to tweak the software on the oggOmatic so that I can have my music player actually do this by itself. I'll probably get this done after I win the lottery (or after the heat death of the universe, whichever comes first}.

1 comment

Ayup, that’s me all right.

You are a Go-Go Girl! Yay you!

What kind of Sixties Person are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

(link via mouse words)

Jan 14, 2005

Friday Dust Mite Blogging™

(Not an actual dust mite)

1 comment

Jan 13, 2005

Oh, really?

«The dictator of Iraq has got weapons of mass destruction.» -- the Coward in Chief, January 2003


To (slightly) tweak an old chestnut, how can you tell that a member of the Evil Party is lying? Their lips are moving.

If it wasn't for the tiny detail that the United States was overthrown by the B*sh junta, I'd be doing a tiny little I told you so! victory dance.

Jan 12, 2005

Evil Party moral values! (pt 4)

The Senate outlaws torture, then Maximum Leader Genius sits down with the Evil Party leadership and erases the regulations.

"Christian" morals in action.

If I were a christian, this would be a good time to start arguing that the Coward in Chief is actually the antichrist and it's pillar of salt time in the okay corral.

(link via Michael Froomkin)

Annotated Abu Gonzales senate testimony

from MaxSpeak.

Now this is creepy

A research experiment on resisting torture.

I get the strong feeling that this is not simply pure research.

(link via King of Zembla, who has some guesses about who might be the sponsors of this project)

Evil Party moral values! (pt 3)

The Governor of Louisiana just issued an executive order prohibiting discrimination against gay state employees. So a couple of Evil Party apparachiks are trying to stop it.

And it's not as if this is a new executive order. Edwin Edwards signed an order that was almost identical to this one a few years ago. The difference, of course, is the Evil Party has decided that persecuting gay people is the way to get votes these days, so orders have been sent out from the Dark Tower to stop civil liberties in their tracks.

And, of course, "faith-based" (so-called "Christian", of course; if some islamic charity went into a similarly hysterial hissy fit the GOP would send out the national guard to enforce the constitution) organizations are whining about how civil liberties for people they don't approve of violates their "religious" beliefs.

Of course the simple solution for being able to protect their "religious" beliefs would be to not contract with the State of Louisiana, but that would get between these "faith-based" parasites and the government teat.

(link via No Capital)

Jan 11, 2005

Not getting the point, the Democratic Party way

Howard Dean has decided to run for DNC head, and, as you might expect, the grumbles of "he's too radical!!!" are starting to creep out of the woodwork, and, more importantly, a collection of !Howard Dean candidates marching out to compete for DNC head.

I'm not paying too much attention to the war for the DNC (I'm not actually a member of the Democratic Party -- I'm a card-carrying socialist) but I've seen the "he's too radical!!!" theme before, when the Democratic establishment dug up an amazing variety of candidates to be the anti-Dean. This was, of course, because Howard Dean can't win the presidency, while candidate x could win.

Well, that didn't work too well.

The Evil Party would have retired that talking point on November 3rd. They're not stupid that way. The leadership of the Stupid Party, on the other hand, seems to be more than willing to keep crashing airplanes into the hanger, because that shows an unswerving moral character or some such nonsense (the Coward in Chief has that same blinkered ignorance, but the Evil Party surrounds their upper class twits with brilliant (evil, but brilliant) middle-class grand vizers and evil henchmen, so their twittery is modulated by good PR.)

The Democratic Party doesn't have any good grand vizers. And selecting for timid leadership will ensure that they won't have any political power either. If that's not the intent, then the "he's too radical!!" nonsense should stop now and the supporters of the faceless bureaucrats who also want to be DNC head should shut up about being "radical" and start talking about the benefits of having the DNC led by someone who isn't known outside the beltway. This might be a tough sell, but if you can sell that without talking about Howard Dean you might have a winner.

Or you could pick Howard Dean as DNC head.

But that would be getting the point.

Fiscal responsibility, Evil Party style

To celebrate successfully stealing the presidential election, the Evil Party is going to have a ridiculously overblown coronation, which is claimed to cost about US$40 million dollars from private donations (bribes). But that doesn't count the US$17 million that the city of Washington DC has to pay for security, which, as befitting the spoiled child of a war profiteering family, the Coward in Chief won't be paying back. And it doesn't count the teeny detail that the B*sh junta is making the 20th a paid holiday for federal workers (this apparently costs about US$66 million, and you know that Maximum Leader Genius is going to stiff the US taxpayer for every penny of that.)

US$123 million, and the Evil Party is stiffing the taxpayers for over 2/3rds of it.

Prepackaged compu-lust

Apple Computer has, to break their routine of selling everything except computers, just introduced a teeny tiny powermac. Teeny as in 7" by 7" by 2", which is smaller than I can do with my mini-itx cases. And Apple advertises that you can plug any USB keyboard (or, presumably, any real keyboard run through a PS/2 to USB converter.)

What's not to love about it (well, aside from getting MacOS X instead of Mastodon Linux, but Mastodon doesn't tend to run on powerpcs)? It's probably got a fan in it (it eats 85 watts, which doesn't compare favorably with the 20 watts the oggOmatic uses), so it would be kind of loud, but if I was going to use it as a server it wouldn't really matter about the fans (it wouldn't work quite yet as a terminal, because we run framemaker and photoshop at home and our copies are for windows -- we're not likely to toss $1200 worth of software down a hole for a cheap and gorgeous teeny-tiny computer. )

But it sure is pretty. Sigh. Perhaps it's time to buy some lottery tickets.


Yuppers, social security is going to devastate the economy

I don't see any alternative to gutting Social Security, do you? After all, the tax cuts for the rich are more important than anything, and if we didn't have the massive payola to the Coward in Chief's friends and relations, why, the economy could collapse back into that nightmare of peace and prosperity that haunted us during the Clinton years.

I believe there's a name for this sort of reform:

fraud n.
  1. A deception deliberately practiced in order to secure unfair or unlawful gain.
  2. A piece of trickery; a trick.
    1. One that defrauds; a cheat.
    2. One who assumes a false pose; an impostor.

Why do the Republicans want to kill Social Security? They want that money to go to their rich patrons. If Social Security was kept around, that money would go to hoi polloi, and then the wealthy would have to work to get their hands on it.

Wealthy people, working for a living? INCONCEIVABLE!

(Image stolen from Hellblazer)

Jan 10, 2005

Spot the references

Guess who said this?

«If any government sponsors the outlaws and killers of innocents, they have become outlaws and murderers themselves. And they take that lonely path at their own peril»

Why, it's Maximum Leader Genius!

Guess who said this?

«Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thorns, or figs from thistles? In the same way, every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus you will know them by their fruits.»

Why, it's Jesus of Nazareth, accurately predicting the Coward in Chief from approximately 2000 years ago!

(the first quote is from a comment to a post in A Tiny Revolution; the second from the Bible (NIV))

Not my country anymore.

Mark Danner has an excellent op-ed in the NY Times regarding Abu Gonzales and the New! American! Value! that is torture. His point is that Abu Gonzales is not only wrong, but incompetent as well, but that won't make a damned bit of difference because the minions of the Evil Party will simply moo encouragingly and vote to confirm him as attorney general.

Is the United States any different from Osama bin Laden? Well, trivially, yes, the United States has nuclear weapons. But are we different in any other way? Osama, when he wanted to encourage the United States, had his minions ram 3 jets into occupied buildings (he tried to ram 4 jets into occupied buildings, but it turns out that the United States managed to shoot one of them down.) The Coward in Chief, to encourage the citizenry of Iraq, has his minions sack and bomb cities, and they're thinking about good old-fashioned death squads. Osama wants the historic Caliphate to follow the (not terribly Islamic) tenets of his strain of Islam. Maximum Leader Genius doesn't seem to personally give a fuck about religion, but Dominionist kooks are stuck to the White House like it was flypaper, and that little cult is not even slightly Christian, even though they've chiselled ornaments off Christianity and applied them to their faith as if they were large featherless magpies.

Oh, and there's one other difference between Maximum Leader Genius and Osama bin Laden. Osama is parked either in the mountains of Afganistan or Pakistan (maybe! Given his services to the B*sh Junta, it's just as likely he's living on an estate near Jackson Hole, Wyoming) and doesn't have control of any country. The Coward in Chief, on the other hand, is the figurehead for a junta that took over the United States of America.

We Are All Torturers Now.

I don't want my children growing up under the shadow of the torturer. I think it's time for me to go.


Jan 09, 2005

Well, that explains Th*m*s K*nk*d*

Granta Books has published an, um, interesting book that, if this review is to be believed, tells about the sinister conspiracy between MOMA and the CIA to promote abstract art.

I find it hard to believe.

Now, if the book was showing CIA support of the whole big-eyed-whale-on-black-velvet genre of modern art (personified by Th*m*s K*nk*d*, Wyl*nd, and a supporting cast of thousands) I'd be much more likely to believe it. Massive financial support from a government is about the only way I can see that sort of art getting any sort of following. But abstract art ? As long as people have been doing art, they've been doing abstract art, so I can't see how a little bit of CIA payola would make any difference.

(link via Ken MacLeod)


When running a test script on a Linux machine, don't forget to validate your input so you don't end up doing something like, um, «fuser -km /», particularly when it's 2am Sunday morning and you're sitting at home in your bathrobe.

For some reason, ssh and inetd don't take too well to having the entire system killed out from underneath them.

1 comment

Jan 08, 2005

Evil Party moral values! (pt 2)

War not going the way you'd like? Pesky resistance fighters controlling the countryside and blowing up your tanks?


Solve those pesky asymmetric warfare problems by forming death squads to get rid of that annoying native population!

(Ooops, those were actually American nuns. Oh well, you can't make an omelette without breaking eggs!)

Welcome to hell, citizen. No, the blood won't wash off.

(link via The Light of Reason)


Evil Party moral values!

Just before his helicopter lifted off, Frist and aides took snapshots of each other near a pile of tsunami debris.
"Get some devastation in the back," Frist told a photographer.

Christian Values, translated by Satan, then inflicted on everybody by the New American Fascists.

Time to play Connect The Dots!

According to the US War College, Rogue State™ designation occurs when states:

  1. Brutalize their own people and squander their national resources for the personal gain of the rulers,
  2. Display no regard for international law, threaten their neighbors, and callously violate international treaties to which they are party,
  3. Are determined to use military force to threaten or offensively achieve their aggressive designs,
  4. Reject basic human values.

So, lesse.

  1. Torture in prisons, looting the treasury, war profiteering on a massive scale.
  2. Yes, Iraq, quaint.
  3. Iraq.
  4. The New American Gulag, dumping Habeas Corpus, Supporting a national hate amendment.

Look, we've become the Soviet Union!

Jan 07, 2005

The Seattle Times must be one of those reality-based newspapers

In an editorial yesterday, the Seattle Times reminds their readers about the New American Gulag (executive summary; the B*sh junta is holding hundreds of prisoners without charging them with anything, without allowing them access to lawyers, but they're being tortured to make up for it.) At the end of the editorially, they comment that That is not what America stands for, and not what it does.

Tch, tch, they've not been paying close attention. In the warped Calvinist world that the Coward in Chief rules over, that is what America stands for. It's really quite simple. It's the Iokiyar philosophy; It's Good if a member of the Evil Party does it, it's Evil if someone else does it.

Me helping an old lady across the street?Evil
A member of the Evil Party driving up onto the sidewalk to run over that old lady?Good

See? It's quite simple. The boring old traditional morality does not apply; a simple presentation of your Super Team Leader card now proves that whatever you've done, from torture, to setting up a systen of Soviet-style gulags, to simple vote fraud, is by definition a good thing, and if you cannot produce such a card, well, it's transparently obvious that you're up to no good.

«That is not what America stands for»? How limiting, how quaint, how old fashioned!

(links from the Sideshow, Old Fashioned Patriot (even though they've got the wrong idea about what Orcs are))

1 comment

The Rubicon? Shoot, you crossed it years ago!

"Hypothetically that authority may exist, but let me also just say we certainly understand and recognize the role of the courts in our system of government. The president's position on this is that ultimately the judges, the courts will make the decision as to whether or not we draw the right balance here."

--Abu Gonzales, responding to a question about whether the Coward in Chief can ignore laws and treaties.

Hypothetically? Gonzales is either (a) stupid,(b) irrevokably evil, or (c) both. He has no business being part of the US Government, so it's just as well that the US Government was overthrown in 2000. The New American Fascism selects for stupid and evil people, so he's a perfect fit.

[Torture!  The new American value!]

(quote via the Seattle Post-Intelligencer)

1 comment

Jan 06, 2005

With a whimper

When they kick at your front door
How you gonna come?
With your hands on your head
Or on the trigger of your gun

When the law break in
How you gonna go?
Shot down on the pavement
Or waiting on death row

You can crush us
You can bruise us
But you'll have to answer to
Oh, the guns of Brixton

Senator Boxer and Representative Tubbs formally protested the 1,000,000 lucky coincidences that gave the election to the Coward in Chief. And, after doing so, they were rewarded with the heels of the Democratic leadership as they scampered away from the spectacle of people trying to do the right thing. File this under if you boil a frog slowly, it won't know what's going on until it's too late. And it's not as if it's going to make any difference; the Evil Party has a loooong history of demonising the entire Stupid Party over one photo-op.

The money feels good
And your life you like it well
But surely your time will come
As in heaven, as in hell

You see, he feels like Ivan
Born under the Brixton sun
His game is called survivin'
At the end of the harder they come

You know it means no mercy
They caught him with a gun
No need for the Black Maria
Goodbye to the Brixton sun


Do you think the leadership of the Stupid Party will ever figure out that the hands on your head reaction doesn't work? The Evil Party just Loooves it when Democrats go out of their way to be reasonable; that means they get to wave the pretend bipartisan banner, and then they can knock the reasonable idiots out of government at the next election. If the Democratic Party would come boiling out of the corner as if their butts were on fire, it would be a lot more difficult for the Coward in Chief and his odious minions to get away with the sort of lying shit they do twice every day before breakfast.

When they kick at your front door
How you gonna come?
With your hands on your head
Or on the trigger of your gun


Shot down on the pavement
Waiting in death row
His game is called survivin'
As in heaven as in hell


(lyrics from The Guns of Brixton by The Clash, link from Echidne)

Clap Harder!

The Iraqi resistance destroyed a Bradley fighting vehicle today, killing 7 soldiers.

If you voted for the Coward in Chief, the blood is on your hands. And, no, it won't wash off.

(via the Light of Reason and Atrios)

All software sucks.

Nothing like being sick to make the old creative juices dry up. And if it's not just being sick, it's having to beat on R*dh*t 8.0 to make it actually work. I've been writing a howto to describe how to build build machines for our (rh based) linux distribution at work, and part of that is picking apart the wonderfully ad-hoc method that people used to add things to the build process. It's, um, fun, particularly when I encounter parts of the build process (that we use for making operating systems that bring in tens of millions of dollars of income a year) that involve going into someone's home directory to pick out binaries.

But that's not what I'm here to talk about. No, I'm here to talk about objective C. You see, part of our build process uses objective C (and this is the only company that I've worked at --and this includes a brief stint of migrant labor at *ppl* -- that I've actually seen using objective C for anything), and it was being built by the traditional method of building the code up from a tarball instead of using an objc rpm. So, as part of my howto, I decided that I'd try installing objc from a package instead of by hand.

I did that, and installed *objc*3.2-7*.i386.rpm from the R*dh*t cds. Then I tried to run the build process and watched it fail to build the code that required objc. Hmm. That's not good. I ran it by hand, and watched the autoconfigure code report that it couldn't find objc. That's funny, sez I, because I know I installed the objc packages.

I looked. Yes, *objc*3.2-7* is there, gcc-objc, libobjc, and even compat-gcc-objc. So why isn't it working?

A (very) short investigation led to the discovery that the code couldn't find objc, and that was because none of the g-ddamn objc packages even bothered to include an objc front end program.

A longer investigation (using xrpm to grind through all of the 900 or so rpms that come with r*dh*t 8.0) found, um, nothing; not even the tiniest sausage of an objc executable or wrapper script.

How, um, useful. I'll bet that cuts way down on the bug reports, too.

1 comment

Jan 02, 2005

Tower of Eng!s

A maze of twisty little railroads, all alike

Jan 01, 2005

Welcome to Soviet America, Comrade!

The Coward in Chief is thinking about discarding the whole idea of Habeas Corpus in favor of the traditional dictatorial toss them into the dungeons until they die. Who needs boring old trials, where you need evidence to actually prove that someone is a Bad Guy™, when you can say you don't like someone and then just fling them into a cell forever.

Yessiree, this is compassionate fascism at its finest. If I wasn't already ashamed to be an American, this stunt would make me ashamed to be American.

A Red State Bird

A pelican over the beach at Ocean Isle, North Carolina

End of year bug!

When the year rolls over, the poor weblog gets terribly confused about the previous month and all the posts just *poof* go away to hide in the archive pages.

I guess it's time for a quicky bugfix release.

update: fixed now