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



April 2004

Guantanamo at SCOTUS

The Supremes heard the case of the people at Guantanamo today. The Op-Ed below makes some of the most relevant points I think. Fundamentally, a person is a person is a person. Citizenship should not matter for most things. Making double standards like that is just asking for the reverse to be done to us at some point in the future. It is bad precident. Not to mention just plain wrong. Citizen or not, there should NEVER be a situation in a controled environment (perhaps exceptions for “heat of the situation” in the middle of a raging battle) when a person has no mechanism whatsoever to appeal their situation to an independant body. It is fundamental to the notion of checks and balances and preservation of basic human rights.

America’s Prisoners, American Rights
(David Cole, New York Times)

All three branches of government have treated citizenship as a central issue. The Bush administration says that it can hold the foreign detainees, most of whom were captured on the battlefield in Afghanistan, without any legal limitations because they are noncitizens held outside American borders. As such, it argues, they have no constitutional rights and no standing in American courts to challenge their detentions. […] These suggestions that noncitizens have less right to be free than citizens are ill advised. Some provisions of the Constitution do explicitly limit their protections to United States citizens — the right to vote and the right to run for Congress or president, for example. The Bill of Rights, however, does not distinguish between citizens and noncitizens. It extends its protections in universal language, to “persons,” “people” or “the accused.” The framers considered these rights to be God-given natural rights, and God didn’t give them only to persons holding American passports.

(via TalkLeft)

Starving Rat Diet

1500 or so calories a day for the “drastically reduced intake” mode of eating that adds like 50% to the life span of rats. I could probably do that. Would it be OK if it was 100% pizza and potato chips? How little is 1500 a day anyway? I’m not up on how many calories things have, other than knowing a can of CocaCola has 110. :-) Perhaps I’ll try this for the rest of the day.

So far today I’ve gone to Friday’s (at about 0130 UTC) and had two or three iced teas, a french onion soup, and a lemon chicken scaloppine. That’s all I’ve had so far today. Am I already over the 1500? Oops!

Low-calorie diet reduces stroke, heart attack risk: study
(AFP on ChannelNewsAsia)

“We don’t know how long each individual actually will end up living, but they certainly have a much longer life expectancy than average because they’re most likely not going to die from a heart attack, stroke or diabetes,” Holloszy said. […] The low-calorie diet group consumed 1,100 to 1,950 calories per day, depending on individuals’ height, weight and gender. Of the calories, 26 percent consisted of protein, 28 percent fat and 46 percent complex carbohydrates.

(via Google News)

Morphing of Content Management

Brice points out how many web content management vendors are moving into areas without the “web” in the name to deal with more traditional document management issues. This definately matches trends I have seen in my own career.

Document Management, Digital Asset Management, Content Management, Web Content Management, Knowledge Management… all significantly overlap each other. It is natural that companies that start in one area as their specialty try to branch out into the others as they grow. I question if in the end this usually leads to better more useful products, or if it just muddles the focus of the companies trying to do everything.

Enron High-jacked Enterprise Content Management
(Brice Dunwoodie, CMSwire)

To put things succinctly, earlier today the point was made by Tony Byrne of CMSWatch that ECM purchases are now made by a completely different area of the organization. What used to be IT’s domain has now fallen under corporate governance, legal, and finance.

Vendors who made their name selling enterprise web content management tools are now talking document management, records management, email management, Sarbanes-Oxley, compliance, etc.

This is an entirely different ball game.

Iraq in the 20s

Found this while surfing while I should be sleeping. Op-Ed in the NYT from Sunday pointing out similarities between the current Iraq situation and the British occupation of Iraq in the 1920’s. Certainly not a part of history I am very familiar with… but it is very relevant here. As Prof Ferguson says, it is certainly a much better comparison than Vietnam or other things that have been brought up lately. A good history lesson would probably be useful here.

The Last Iraqi Insurgency
(Niall Ferguson, New York Times)

From Ted Kennedy to the cover of Newsweek, we are being warned that Iraq has turned into a quagmire, George W. Bush’s Vietnam. Learning from history is well and good, but such talk illustrates the dangers of learning from the wrong history. To understand what is going on in Iraq today, Americans need to go back to 1920, not 1970. And they need to get over the American inhibition about learning from non-American history.

(via Insults Unpunished)