This is the website of Abulsme Noibatno Itramne (also known as Sam Minter). Posts here are rare these days. For current stuff, follow me on Mastodon



July 2003

Blair’s Speech

Once again, this is a great speech. Read it. Read the whole thing.

Text of Prime Minister Blair’s Speech to Congress (Reuters at the Washington Post)

As Britain knows, all predominant power seems for a time invincible, but, in fact, it is transient.

The question is: What do you leave behind?

And what you can bequeath to this anxious world is the light of liberty.

That is what this struggle against terrorist groups or states is about. We’re not fighting for domination. We’re not fighting for an American world, though we want a world in which America is at ease. We’re not fighting for Christianity, but against religious fanaticism of all kinds.

And this is not a war of civilizations, because each civilization has a unique capacity to enrich the stock of human heritage.

We are fighting for the inalienable right of humankind — black or white, Christian or not, left, right or a million different — to be free, free to raise a family in love and hope, free to earn a living and be rewarded by your efforts, free not to bend your knee to any man in fear, free to be you so long as being you does not impair the freedom of others.

That’s what we’re fighting for. And it’s a battle worth fighting.

It may just be good speech writing and delivery, but it is *GOOD* speech writing and delivery. Conveying the message in a way I have not heard from W. Or if I have, it is somehow less convincing from him because of the other things he says and the stupid and disturbing things that come out of his mouth.

It may not convince me that the war was the right way to have gone about this, I think there were better ways that could have done less overall damage. But this leaves the impression that it comes from a man of integrity standing up for principals I can believe in and follow. One that thinks things through, and actually does have the world’s (and his country’s) best interests at heart.

By contrast, speeches by W make me feel like I am listening to a jingoistic idiot who has goals and objectives which I do not trust, and who I don’t believe thinks out or understands the full implications of his decisions and instead relies on the analysis of people who I trust even less.

Oh, and I liked his jokes near the beginning too:

Mr. Speaker, sir, my thrill on receiving this award was only a little diminished on being told that the first Congressional Gold Medal was awarded to George Washington for what Congress called his “wise and spirited conduct” in getting rid of the British out of Boston.

On our way down here, Senator Frist was kind enough to show me the fireplace where, in 1814, the British had burnt the Congress Library. I know this is, kind of, late, but sorry.

Actually, you know, my middle son was studying 18th century history and the American War of Independence, and he said to me the other day, “You know, Lord North, Dad, he was the British prime minister who lost us America. So just think, however many mistakes you’ll make, you’ll never make one that bad.”

And true, he didn’t address the problems with intelligence and other factors which rushed this thing along faster than needed, which is being shown more and more by the day. But I don’t think he needed to during this speech. It wasn’t the time and place for that.

Anyway, read the Blair speech. It is very good. Made me feel more patriotic than anything I heard anybody say on July 4th.

Can I please vote for Tony Blair for President?

Wow. I just listened to Tony Blair’s speech to Congress. He blew me away. He is so much more convincing than W, so much more reasonable, and said all the right sorts of things. I would probably vote for this man in a second, whereas voting for W is pretty much unthinkable to me. I thought the way W rushed into Iraq was irresponsible and reckless. I think Tony would have worked toward the same result, even perhaps including the same level of military action, but just done it in a much better way.

In any case, Blair was very very impressive. If you missed the speech, look for a transcript or audio/video of it.

Anyway, more thoughts once I find a transcript online and am actually home from work and have time to think, as opposed to now when I have to get back to work.

For now, here’s a link to the CNN story on the speech.

Gravity Talk

Oh no, I saw this talk about gravity propigating at infinate speed, and just had to insert myself. Oh well.

What’s The Speed of Gravity? (Thread on

Uh… several people have said that current experiments and theories predict an infinate speed for propigation of gravitational forces. This is just not correct. It was correct for Newton, but this was a big part of Einsteins General Relativity. One of the assumptions of the theory was in fact that gravitational forces would indeed propagate at exactly the speed of light.

Six Today

Got in at 13:50 after once again taking my time at home. So six dollars for Kelly. I still feel very tired though. I slept on the couch, cause that is where I was, and I never sleep as well on the couch, which is probably why I do it 50% of the time. Anyway, still tired. Only one meeting today in the afternoon. The rest of my day today will be working through a couple of voice mails, a bunch of emails, and a huge pile of papers to evaluate and either throw away and read, and through all of this find items to add to my to do list.

It will be hard to keep awake. I think I will start with a walk to get a White Chocolate Molcha at the mini-Starbucks they have down the hall. I need to stop at the ATM too. Kelly took my last six dollars.

Three Three Three

OK, it is now 3 UTC. I have been up since, what was it, 11 UTC? No, it was 10 UTC. With alarms ringing since 9 UTC. And that was after only 3 hours of sleep or so. I was really tired hours ago. Especially afetr I ate. But I am still up. I have a few more emails from Wednesday yet to answer, but I am getting more and more sleepy. So I think I’m going to call it quits for the night. I’ll clean up the rest of Wednesday in the morning before I leave for work. Maybe I’ll actually get to work by 13 and not have to pay Kelly. :-)

Jon Said It Was Lame

After my meeting was over today, I called Jon from work, who I knew was at MacWorld, and asked if it was worth my while to catch a cab and go visit MacWorld. Jon said not to bother, that it was “really pathetic”.

Apple’s Manhattan Freak Show by Michelle Delio at Wired News

It’s all happening this week at Macworld CreativePro Expo where, in lieu of the usual ecstatic insanity invoked by Apple CEO Steve Jobs’ traditional opening address, the lunatics have apparently decided to take over the asylum.

Too Bad for RIAA

Ha Ha! (For now anyway.)

Hot spots elude RIAA dragnet by John Borland on CNET

Early last spring, NYCWireless co-founder Anthony Townsend got a note in the mail saying that someone on his network had been violating copyright laws.

This type of note is becoming increasingly common as record companies and Hollywood studios subpoena Internet service providers (ISPs) for information about subscribers in order to stop people from trading songs and movies online. But Townsend’s case was unusual: As the representative of a loose collection of wireless “hot spot” Internet access points, there was no way he or the relevant access point operator in New York’s Bryant Park could identify or warn the file trader.

Of course, I’m 100% Apple Music Store for new music downloads now. No more gnutella for Sam. They still have to work on their selection though.