My knowledge peaked when I was 17 – I was sure I knew everything. It’s been a downhill slide since then. I hope I will attain enlightenment just before I die, with the realization that I know nothing.
Sometimes I manage to make some predictions that turn out to be true, such as my prediction I wouldn’t make any money on Google ads on this site. But here’s something that’s got me puzzled. Daring Fireball is a weblog that posts about all things Apple. Not much, just a post every few days, but usually of very high quality. No, that fact is not puzzling, but this one is:
There’s no other way for me to start this other than by firing away: Last week I left my full-time job at Joyent, for the sole reason so that I can write Daring Fireball as a full-time job.
You don’t get that much extra as a member, it’s mostly a statement of appreciation to John Gruber – who no doubts deserves the appreciation, but I’m astonished he’s getting so much members he can write Daring Fireball as a full-time job. Most people appreciate his writing, but my experiences writing free stuff show that at most 1 in every 1000 users bother to donate any money.
So, I guess it’s time for another experiment. I think it’s not possible to get enough money to live by just by donations. Prove me wrong by clicking this button:
Since the experiment isn’t about me getting money, I’ll convert the dollar amount I receive into t-shirts (including printing, shipping, etc). Each dollar “buys” you one “ticket” in a lottery, and I’ll draw as many winners as there are t-shirts, with a maximum of one t-shirt per donor.
Thus, if you donate $20, your chances of winning a t-shirt are 20 times bigger than somebody donating $1. The total amounts of t-shirts available will depend on the total amount of money I receive.
What’s *on* the t-shirt is up to you. If you don’t tell me anything, you’ll leave the decision up to me, but it will certainly be something related to “the daily irrelevant”. If you want something special, tell me in the comments box on your donation. For example, if you want something from an older version of the Daily Irrelevant, here’s what the site looked like in 2001:
And here’s 2002:
Other old versions are available through the Wayback machine. Apologies for readers who want a version from before 2001 – the Daily Irrelevant was e-mail-only those days, and they are lost in time…
Estas imágenes chocantes nos muestran el costo humano en los Estados Unidos de la bárbara guerra de Irak. No nos imaginemos en comparación con el horror y sufrimiento que debe estar padeciendo el pueblo iraquí. Al ver las terribles fotos de los soldados norteamericanos mutilados, que gozan de una enorme superioridad militar, nos deja perplejos de la matanza que debe estar cometiéndose cada día en ese país. Reportaje fotográfico actualizado.
The government that governs best is the government that governs least, and by these standards we have set up a fabulous government in Iraq.
– Stephen Colbert
President Bush has quietly claimed the authority to disobey more than 750 laws enacted since he took office, asserting that he has the power to set aside any statute passed by Congress when it conflicts with his interpretation of the Constitution.
Among the laws Bush said he can ignore are military rules and regulations, affirmative-action provisions, requirements that Congress be told about immigration services problems, ”whistle-blower” protections for nuclear regulatory officials, and safeguards against political interference in federally funded research.
In his signing statements, Bush has repeatedly asserted that the Constitution gives him the right to ignore numerous sections of the bills — sometimes including provisions that were the subject of negotiations with Congress in order to get lawmakers to pass the bill. He has appended such statements to more than one of every 10 bills he has signed.
”He agrees to a compromise with members of Congress, and all of them are there for a public bill-signing ceremony, but then he takes back those compromises — and more often than not, without the Congress or the press or the public knowing what has happened,” said Christopher Kelley, a Miami University of Ohio political science professor who studies executive power.
David Golove, a New York University law professor who specializes in executive-power issues, said Bush has cast a cloud over ”the whole idea that there is a rule of law,” because no one can be certain of which laws Bush thinks are valid and which he thinks he can ignore.
”Where you have a president who is willing to declare vast quantities of the legislation that is passed during his term unconstitutional, it implies that he also thinks a very significant amount of the other laws that were already on the books before he became president are also unconstitutional,” Golove said.
A president who ignores the court, backed by a Congress that is unwilling to challenge him, Golove said, can make the Constitution simply ”disappear.”
Any congresscritter who thinks it’s okay to give powers to Bush that he or she wouldn’t give to, say, President Hillary Clinton, doesn’t understand that presidential authority resides in the office, not the officeholder, doesn’t understand how government works and certainly doesn’t belong in it.
A $243 million program led by the United States Army Corps of Engineers to build 150 health care clinics in Iraq has in some cases produced little more than empty shells of crumbling concrete and shattered bricks cemented together into uneven walls, two reports by a federal oversight office have found.
The reports, released yesterday, detail a close inspection of five of the clinics in the northern city of Kirkuk as well as a sweeping audit of the entire program, which began in March 2004 as a heavily promoted effort to improve health care for ordinary Iraqis. The reports say that none of the five clinics in Kirkuk and only 20 of the original 150 across the country will be completed without new financing.
Written by the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction, an independent office, the reports cite a wide range of factors, including disputes among Iraqi construction companies and problems with local materials, that have contributed to the program’s failures. The American company Parsons, the prime contractor for the work, also comes in for stiff criticism.
But the reports’ main finding is that lax oversight by the Army corps is responsible for the failure of the overall program. Cowed by security fears that the reports suggest may have been overblown, the corps sometimes inspected the work only through what it called “windshield surveys” — hasty drive-bys.
The determining factor is absence.
No human being enlivens the desolate scene. No sound of activity penetrates the grim silence. Only the incessant wind seems to grab at everything and blows through everything.
Pripyat is affected most immediately by the reactor disaster in Chernobyl on April 26, 1986. Many people die, thousands suffer from the long term effects until today. Five million people still live on contaminated terrain.
20 years later a project of a special kind emerges here on the initiative of Sergey Abramchuk and Vitali Shkliarou who witnessed the catastrophe as a child. In Oktober 2005 seven artists from Moscow, Minsk and Berlin travel to the hostile restricted area. With their artistic work they want to commemorate a catastrophe that can happen again anytime and should not do so.
I had some pictures last year as well – here we go again:
Elmar Weisser, beard champion 2005 freestyle, poses during the International German Beard and Moustache Championships in Hesel, northern Germany, on Saturday, April 29, 2006. Some 100 participants from eight nations compete to become world champion in one of 16 beard and moustache categories. (AP Photo/Kai-Uwe Knoth)
German Willi Chevalier, world champion freestyle chin beard 2005.
German Hans Gassner.
Het ‘Normen en Waarden Kabinet’ Balkenende 2 wil weten wat voor eikel jij eigenlijk bent. Voor de beantwoording hebben ze watvooreikelbenjij.nl gelanceerd. Aan deze campagne hebben ze – vraag ons niet hoe – bijna 1 miljoen euro besteed.
Na de totaal geflopte ‘Normen en Waarden site’ 16miljoenmensen.nl (kosten
294.000 euro) mocht het natuurlijk niet nog eens mis gaan. Maar goed, de
vraag van de regering is nu dus niet óf je een eikel bent, maar wat vóór
eikel je bent.
What the f…? Wij eikels? Hallo kabinet: wat zijn jullie zelf dan? Wie zijn jullie om ons op zo’n toon toe te spreken? Wat hebben jullie gedaan de afgelopen 3 jaar waardoor je je zo’n arrogante houding kunt aanmeten? Tijd om jullie wat vragen te stellen: