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As I'm sure most of you know (or at least should know, since it's on the right side here), I worked at The Journal Times in Racine for several years, first in high school, then between breaks in college. And with all due respect to the people there, shit like this doesn't surprise me at all:
Washington Post story: Oak Creek plant called a setback for the environment

The Washington Post has run a story, titled "Wisconsin Power Plant is called a setback for the environment," reviewing the local battle over the Oak Creek Power Plant expansion.

The story is a nice review if you've lost track of what's going on. The story notes environmental activists are worried about water and air quality. It notes We Energies is concerned about cost.
I don't know what's worse:
  1. that a paper several hundred miles away probably produced a better story than the local (Racine) paper did (or could do)
  2. that the JT actually brought attention to the story, while pointing out that they probably haven't kept their readers engaged on the issue
  3. that the JT did such a lame job of offering a synopsis of said story

On a related note, it turns out a friend of ours is the daughter of an ex-publisher of the JT. One who I used to work for, in fact. Such a small world. Oh, and apparently he bitches about the paper these days too.

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More planned building in town:
Trio Development is proposing an estimated $15 million, 16-story apartment building on a quarter-acre lot at the corner of Charter and Dayton streets.

The site now holds a two- story building with the former Milan's sandwich shop and eight vacant rental units.
I have three questions:

1) When did Milan's close? I always liked their subs.

2) That lot is *not* very large. The Comp Sci building isn't too far past the left edge of that picture. It seems like this would really be squeezed in there.

3) Campus needs more housing? Hasn't the complaint from developers been that the UW shouldn't add more beds because they can't keep their developments full?

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So we just got back from Star Wars. I'd have to agree it was the best of the first 3 - damning with faint praise, I guess. Watching things come full circle was pretty neat. Something finally dawned on me during this one. The problem with these three wasn't necessarily poor dialog or acting - the original trilogy had plenty of both - it was the lack of any real energy or lightheartedness. I think the easy way to sum it up would be the lack of a Han Solo - or Harrison Ford. As interesting as the greater story is, there's really little attachment (well, for me anyway) to any of the characters themselves.

Anyway...I should watch the first 3 again sometime.

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I'm so glad it's once again that time of year to do yard work. Not that I necessarily always enjoy having to do yard work, but it sure is nice to be outside on a warm sunny day. It looks like today might be borderline on both counts, but it's still damn nice. Maybe a bike ride is in order.

I've been having way too much fun with Linux and X11 lately. At work it was mentioned that we might need a graphics program for some things, which prompted me to install GIMP on one of our Linux boxes and run it from my desktop. Right now I'm in Firefox on a lowly K6-2/400/128MB box via the X server in MacOS X. And it's probably running as fast as on this G4/733/384! Now if I only had my audio apps in OS X...

Excuse me while I geek out.

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As mentioned a few days ago, the Kansas State Board of Education wants to push "intelligent design" into schools, which is nothing more than a pseudo-scientific term for creationism. As a mean to that end, they actually want to redefine science itself:
Advocates of "intelligent design" are pushing the board to reject a definition limiting science to natural explanations for what's observed in the world. Instead, they want to define it as "a systematic method of continuing investigation," without specifying what kind of answer is being sought. The definition would appear in the introduction to the state's science standards.
Stephen Meyer, a senior fellow at the Seattle-based Discovery Institute, which supports intelligent design, said changing the schools' definition of science would avoid freezing out questions about how life arose and developed on Earth. The current definition is "not innocuous," Meyer said. "It's not neutral. It's actually taking sides."
Next at 11: Local groups are enraged that scientists are taking sides and calling water "the unification of hydrogen and oxygen".

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Ok, so this is a strange request, but if anyone has a 4 (or 8!) port USB KVM switch they want to get rid of for cheap/free, let me know.

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Bill O'Reilly has a meltdown:
At the start of the segment, O'Reilly stated that the Chronicle had "taken a lot of shots at me, so it must be left of center." O'Reilly's name has appeared only once in a Chronicle editorial, which concerned not O'Reilly, but Fox News' suit against Al Franken for his use of the phrase "fair and balanced." The suit was thrown out of court.
O'Reilly accused his guest, Austin defense attorney Courtney Anderson, of misleading the audience when she defended the Chronicle editorial. O'Reilly then read what he said was a quote from the editorial. Unfortunately, not one word of what O'Reilly read appeared in the Chronicle editorial or anywhere else in the paper. He and his staff apparently confused someone else's commentary with the Chronicle's.
Of course, pointing out that O'Reilly has totally lost it is just too damn easy.

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Kansas just can't give up, can they? Once again they want to teach evolution in schools, this time under the guise of "intelligent design":
This week's battle is focused on Kansas, where State Board of Education hearings begin Thursday on evolution and intelligent design, a carefully marketed theory that challenges accepted understandings of Earth's origins in favor of the idea that a creator played a guiding role.
The Discovery Institute, the strongest voice behind intelligent design, at one point gathered the names of 356 scientists who questioned evolution. In response, the National Center for Science Education located 543 scientists named Steve -- including a few Stephanies -- who declared the evidence "overwhelmingly in favor of the idea that all living things share a common ancestry."
NPR also has a good story on this, including this piece of wisdom:
"I have done my research, and I believe that I've come to a conclusion...they need to be exposed to the information; they need to hear the evidence that refutes evolution." - Kansas State Board of Education member Connie Morris
You really need to listen to hear what a joker that woman is.

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I am:
"The Marxists are too reactionary for you. With people like you around, America collectively thanks God for John Ashcroft."

Are You A Republican?

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Anyone who knows me knows I love hamburgers (sorry, Lori!). I've had 1 lb burgers a number of times, which is probably my limit. This, however, is a bit much:
Starting last weekend, a Pennsylvania restaurant put a 15-pound burger on its menu, claiming the largest burger available anywhere.

Dennis Liegey, the owner of Denny's Beer Barrel Pub in Clearfield, 120 northeast of Pittsburgh, said the "Beer Barrel Belly Buster" weighs in with 10 pounds of meat molded into a 20-inch patty on a specially baked, 17-inch bun.

The balance of the weight comes from 25 slices of cheese, a head of lettuce, three tomatoes, two onions, plus copious quantities of mayo, ketchup, relish, mustard, and peppers.
Dear lord. And I thought the 2 lb Big Ass Burger at Brats was too much.


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The Simpsons Archive

Vital stats:
DOB 2/16/79. I'm a web developer at the Wisconsin Department of Corrections. I like lots of old music, including The Who. I spend a lot of time working with computers. And my favorite TV show (when I actually decide to watch TV, that is), obviously, is The Simpsons.

In May 2002 I officially graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a BS in computer science. In 1997 (man that seems like a long time ago) I graduated from Washington Park HS. Yes, I know, that site isn't very impressive, and no, I haven't touched it for several years.

WFS Logo

One of the best experiences I have ever had was on a trip called Western Field Studies. This is a 33 day adventure throughout the western United States. Students travel on a school bus to national parks, monuments, forests, and places of historical interest and camp out (in tents or under the stars). I was a part of trip 25, which took place in the summer of 1996. A first for WFS was we took along a laptop computer and kept up a web site. That link will take you to the 1996 site, where there is a link to the current site.