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Greg

Greggles, Gregorybeans, Frijoles, Beans

Libertarians Unite: Even if you don't know you are one

The NCPA has a news summary about how more people are breaking from the traditional "left/right" pigeonhole that politics puts us into even if we don't recognize it and vote that way. The basic idea is that lots of people are Libertarians but don't know that they are.

So Take a political test and figure out where you stand already. And once you do figure it out, think about voting that way.

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Noble Savage, nostalgie de la boue, and Origins of Virtue

I read Matt Ridley's book Origins of Virtue a while ago, but just now in reading an article by iMomus in Wired about Nostalgia For Mud I was reminded of the Origins of Virtue.

The book takes an anthropological/sociological look at the idea of altruism, gift giving, and community to find where the history of animal and mankind these ideas have come from. Ridley notes how a certain species of bat will go out looking for food, return to the nest, and share food that they have with other bats who did not find food. Since the bats are not guaranteed to find food when they go out hunting, this provides the community with an insurance or "shared risk" policy that helps them all stay helathy. However, they keep track of who they have shared food with and if someone becomes a "free rider" on the system then the rest of the bats will stop sharing with them. Sounds an awful lot like the 1996 "Welfare to Work" and change from "entitlement" to "Temporary Assistance" kinds of changes that were made to welfare programs in the US.

Another interesting part of the book was a review of a set of Australian tribes that each produced different goods which they would trade with each other. They didn't need to trade - they could have all produced the items themselves and not had to trade. Ridley theorized that they forced themselves to specialize, to become reliant on each other, because it reduced the chances that the tribes would fight with each other. Ever hear of the Smoot-Hawley tarriffs (and their contemporaries) which probably helped usher in World War II? What about the establishment of the European Common Economic Zone (the commercial side of the EU) as a means to foster inter-reliance and reduce the chances of war. Would Germany, France, and England go to war today? Not as long as trade depends on it. There are certainly other reasons for a country/state to specialize, but as the US has shown with our Strategic Oil Reserves countries generally only specialize to a point and then will try to maintain some of the capability in an area to maintain a smidgen of independence.

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Sakai and Moodle Comparison and Project ReDuplication in General

Project re-Duplication? Well that's a crazy idea that people would not only duplicate a project, but re-duplicate on top of that. Except that it happens all the freaking time!

Project Cooperation vs. Competition

Zack from CivicSpaceLabs has done a comparison of Moodle and Sakai.

Either one of those projects could/should easily be integrated/absorbed into other Content Management Frameworks which is his kind of his point today.

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How To Fix a Jutting Jaw

Dear Lazyweb,

When I get stressed I have a habit of jutting out my jaw.

I'd like to stop doing that.

I have the following solutions:

  1. Duct tape my jaw to the back of my head
  2. Dig out my head-gear from middle school and attach it to my bottom teeth this time
  3. Get my mom to sit next to me all the time and say "ah, ah, ah" whenever I jut it out

Technique 3 was my solution last time I had this problem. Sadly, last time I was 4 years old and bringing her to work would just be weird and work (surprise) is where I get the stress that makes me jut the jaw. If I worked from home or something, that might work, but I'd have to work from her home.

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Strawbale DVD and Google Video

So, this is the confluence of the "Google Video" subject I've talked about in the past and my housing interests:

A producer of a Strawbale DVD has uploaded a promotional video to the Google Video system. Now, how neat is that?

Pretty freaking neat. Who needs a TV when you've got Google video to find the movies and some DVDs that you want to watch.

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Yet Another Reason I love Dreamhost

So, I already wrote about why I like my website host so much but then today I got another reason to love them.

I have owned several domains over the years. One trick about domains is that you register and update the domain either every 1 year or 2 years or some other amount, and you use different registrars and you, well, forget your login information for that one registrar from 6 years ago and you no longer have access to the stupid college email address you used to register there and, and to protect you they don't just let any geek off the street change the email address, you have to fax in a signed form with a photocopy of your driver's license because signed forms with photocopies of your drivers license are impossible to fake and that fax proves who you are, and then they just ignore that fax so a few months later you call and they tell you the process again and you send it again and they ignore it again. Fun process, right?

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Top 4 Things To NOT Look At

Don't look at them, don't listen to them, just don't. As much as you loved watching Mr. Rogers touring the tuba factory, this is not the same thing.

  1. Surgery. Espcially on yourself.
  2. A mechanic fixing your car.
  3. Home repairs - on your home.
  4. A short order chef, preparing your dinner

That's it. Just don't do it. The person doing the work probably knows what they are doing, it's not going to kill you, but the process involves some gruesome details that you just don't want to know about.

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