Microsoft, in Its Own Words

Software Notebook: Fun reading in Microsoft’s Iowa lawsuit

On the eve of the commercial release of Micro$oft Vista, it is good to learn how Microsoft admittedly arrived at Vista. They copied Apple’s OS X. They even say as much internal documents. Read the article linked above.

Microsoft does not sell cigarettes, but it does borrow the tobacco industry’s penchant for publicly denying the transgressions to which it openly confesses internally. And, in this case, the court documents show everything. Microsoft copied Apple’s Mac OS X. Shamelessly. Just like Steve Jobs said.

So, why bother with Vista, when you can get the original, genuine article, OS X, for less?

Exploding Whale

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Whale explodes in Taiwanese city

January 29 was the anniversary of this very bizarre event. The rotting flesh of a dead sperm whale generated so much gas that the beast exploded on the streets of Taiwan while the carcass was being transported to an academic laboratory for the purposes of scientific inquiry.

Yes, as they say always, truth is far stranger than fiction. The Taiwanese who were covered with whale blood, meat and blubber after the explosion will testify to the truthfulness (and even “truthiness”) of the adage.

Of “Have”s and “Have-not”s

A Look at the Numbers: How the Rich Get Richer

The most distasteful thing about the spending habits of the most affluent in our country (enumerated in the article above) is the inordinate amount of preaching that emanates from that class. Preaching with regards to morality, morality in politics, morality in business, morality in life in general. The Bible is always prominent in these sermons, as is the character of one Jesus Christ, but the notions of charity that are codified in the writings that are attributed to Jesus are always conspicuously absent from these sermons. It’s almost as if He was another self-made man–the self-made carpenter–whose demise was doubly aggravated by Rome’s undue taxation and ultimate destruction of His woodworking business.

The Resurrection refers to Jesus’ physical return from the dead. His spiritual revival is, apparently, something for which we have to wait. It is awfully disheartening to know that so many are waiting for Armageddon to behave “morally”, most prominently the wealthy. It must be the case that the wealth will sway God on the Day of Judgment, or that God does not exist, and all the preaching is just a ploy to control the masses for the sole purpose of accumulating wealth.

Yes, sinners are those who cannot live within the confines of a $12000 annual income, and saints are those who cannot live within the confines of 39% income tax and estate taxes imposed on sums of millions of dollars.

The morality play is, apparently, a farce.

Groveling for Dollars

Telegraph | News | US is only country to oppose UN arms trade treaty

The British profited from the slave trade for decades after they had outlawed the notion in England. This hypocrisy, however, was committed nearly two centuries ago. As this news story nicely demonstrates, the former imperial powers have grown rich enough and moral enough to be willing to refuse to grow rich by dealing in human misery, indignity and death.

The United States, however, seems to have not learned this lesson. It is shameful that a country so rich and so powerful insists on profiting from the misery of the wretched, on deferring to the greed and animosity of warmongers for a modest profit (nationally), and on accepting and encouraging the ignorance of barbarians for the sake of a handful of immoral companies.

Bush More Dangerous than Kim Jong Il

British believe Bush more dangerous than Kim Jong-il | Special reports | Guardian Unlimited

It would seem as though our brethren across the Atlantic are endowed with a far more realistic assessment of George W Bush’s capability for calamity than the Americans who defied logic by reelecting him. For all of his madness, Kim Jong Il’s havoc has so far afflicted North Koreans primarily. Kim Jong Il’s sphere of evil is decidedly more limited in size (though not magnitude) than the sphere of ignorance in which George W Bush happily resides.

Why am I writing this stuff? Will this madness end?