Saturday, December 23, 2006

Black box data admissible in court, kids!

That little black box under your car seat remembers a lot of stuff if you get in a crash, boys and girls.  Such as the previous 5 to 15 seconds of driver input including everything from pitch, yaw and roll to the air conditioner setting.

All of which is admissible in Canadian courts.  Oh, and lots of American ones too, like Kalifornia (People's Republic of).  So when the nice officer asks you what happened, SHUT UP.  That way at least they can't claim you lied later.

The people that brought you the current OBD2 version black box (Kalifornia, that is) have more in store.  In particular they have big plans for the unholy marriage of a cell phone and a GPS unit with a boosted version of the black box.   Basically  added sensors and a LOT of memory, it  will record data for weeks or months instead of seconds. You can get a ton of data on a 2 gig flash card.

This thing will know where your car is, how fast its going, what the speed limit is on that street, how many people are in the car, when the last time you changed your oil was, and maybe even if its you that's driving based on your weight in the driver's seat and/or your thumb print on the door lock.  Best of all, it will be able to call the cops on you if you are speeding, running a red or [gasp!] SMOKING.  The cops, upon receiving this call from your car, will be able to issue you a ticket electronically, inform you of said ticket VERBALLY through your in-car phone (and tell you to slow the hell down too!), or possibly disable your engine and lock the brakes for good measure should the mood strike them to do so. 

Should the all-important emission controls indicate the car is running dirty, the on-board computer could unilaterally decide to cripple the car, tell you where the nearest Official Repair Station is and refuse to go in any other direction than toward said repair station.  Given the cheapness of video cameras these days they could probably stick a few of those in there too and run 24 hour surveillance on you in your own car.  At your expense to boot.

Why bother with all this?  Because people too stupid to be trusted with guns are also far, far too stupid to be trusted with cars.

That'd be you and me, my friends.

Let me assure you, this is going to happen.    Large players are bringing a lot of money to bear on the issue to drive it through the legislatures and the courts.  The insurance industry alone has sufficient interest in this to lobby all levels of government intensely.

What to do?  Two things.  First, vote for people who don't like this kind of thing.  You are going to have to ask each one individually, Republicans and Conservatives have just as bad a record on this issue as the Lefties, more's the pity.

Second, drive a car that doesn't have a black box.  That means an antique with a carburetor or a fuel injection unit you built yourself.  Like this one

There's always a way to do it.  Sometimes its just a pain in the butt is all.

The Phantom

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Major breakthrough in human genome announced.

Today a major advance in human genetics is published.  They have finally figured out something that has been puzzling all of us for a long time, why are people so different if 99.9% of their DNA is identical?  Because it isn't identical after all!  Shazam!

What have scientists discovered today?

They have found that each of us is more different genetically than we previously believed. Instead of being 99.9 per cent identical, it may turn out to be more like 99 per cent identical - enough of a difference to explain many variations in human traits. Instead of having just two copies of every gene - one from each parent - we have some genes that are multiplied several times. Furthermore these "multiple copy numbers" differ from one person to another, which could explain human physical and even mental variation.

Why does this matter?

One practical benefit is that it could lead to a new understanding of some of the most difficult, incurable diseases. Although it adds an extra layer of complexity to our understanding of the human genome, the discovery could lead eventually to new insights and medical treatments of conditions ranging from childhood disorders to senile dementia. Scientists are predicting for instance that the knowledge could lead to new diagnostic tests for such diseases as cancer.

How was this discovery made?

Scientists have developed sophisticated methods of analysing large segments of DNA over recent years. "In some ways the methods we have used are 'molecular microscopes', which have transformed the techniques used since the foundation of clinical genetics where researchers used microscopes to look for visible deletions and rearrangements in chromosomes," explained Nigel Carter of the Sanger Institute in Cambridge.

What genes are copied many times and why?

There are just under 30,000 genes in the human genome, which consists of about 3 billion "letters" of the DNA code. The scientists found that more than 10 per cent of these genes appear to be multiplied in the 270 people who took part in the study. They do not know why some genes are copied and some are not. One gene, called CCL3L1, which is copied many times in people of African descent, appears to confer resistance to HIV. Another gene involved in making a blood protein is copied many times in people from south-east Asia and seems to help against malaria. Other research has shown that variation in the number of copies of some genes is involved in Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease.

Are there any other practical applications?

The scientists looked at people from three broad racial groups - African, Asian and European. Although there was an underlying similarity in terms of how common it was for genes to be copied, there were enough racial differences to assign every person bar one to their correct ethnic origin. This might help forensic scientists wishing to know more about the race of a suspect.

Who made the discovery and where can we read more about it?

Scientists from 13 research centres were involved, including Britain's Sanger Institute in Cambridge, which also took a lead role in deciphering the human genome. The research is published in Nature, Nature Genetics and Genome Research.

I predict a lot more of this kind of discovery.  The genome cannot possibly be as simple as we think.  I mean, there's bacteria with more raw DNA than what we have, why aren't they more complicated?  Therefore coding must be much more complex than a simple one dimensional "tape" of DNA.

For one thing, we have more brain cells than DNA base pairs.  What decides where all those cells go?  Since they seem to end up in the right place almost every time, something must be doing that job eh?  So that mechanism must be coded fore somehow.

Then there's protein folding to consider.  If protein A folds one way it does one thing, if it folds another way it does something completely different.  Same chain of components, different fold.  There's a lot of data required to "remember" all those folds, and its in the DNA somehow.

Therefore I think we can expect lots more emergent properties to be discovered over the next few years, which will probably change not only biology but computer science as well.  This is very exiting stuff!

The Phantom

Monday, November 20, 2006

Euros make amazing discovery: freedom works!

Yes friends, those clever lads in Europe have made an amazing discovery.  Seems that when left alone by government, people behave rationally, carefully and even courteously!

A project implemented by the European Union is currently seeing seven cities and regions clear-cutting their forest of traffic signs. Ejby, in Denmark, is participating in the experiment, as are Ipswich in England and the Belgian town of Ostende.

The utopia has already become a reality in Makkinga, in the Dutch province of Western Frisia. A sign by the entrance to the small town (population 1,000) reads "Verkeersbordvrij" -- "free of traffic signs." Cars bumble unhurriedly over precision-trimmed granite cobblestones. Stop signs and direction signs are nowhere to be seen. There are neither parking meters nor stopping restrictions. There aren't even any lines painted on the streets.

But oddly, there is no carnage in the streets.  How can this be?!  Don't the sheeple all go crazy when there's nobody telling them what to do?  Seems not.

Sounds oddly familiar too.  Don't I remember something like this with... guns?  Citizens are issued concealed carry permits, and nothing happens.  No OK Coral, no St. Valentine's Day Massacre, no Apocalypse Now.

Gee, could there be a connection?

The Sarcastic Phantom

Monday, November 13, 2006

Democrat victory in foreign policy!

Seems like the Chicoms have closed the technology gap in the oceans.  Their formerly creaky diesel subs have begun sneaking up on US aircraft carriers and surfacing in Japanese waters by surprise. 

Looks like all the wonderful peace/love/cooperation being preached by the Democrats is finally bearing fruit:  the US is no longer the only super power in the world.  Isn't that great?

The Phantom, de-cloaking off the port bow...

Thursday, October 19, 2006

The Phantom agrees with wild eyed socialist!

Yes friends, it is hard for me to admit this, but I agree with Sting, the über-socialist and famous limousine liberal: music these days sucks.

BERLIN (Reuters) - Sting said contemporary rock music is so stagnant that he prefers to sing 16th century English ballads.

"Rock music has come to a standstill -- it's not going forward any more, it only bores me," Die Zeit quoted Sting as saying.
Yep, I find I must agree with the pink-underwear clad, rain forest saving British twit, which galls me to no end.  So much so that I feel a rant coming on.


I turn on the radio and the pop music stations suck.  The "dance" music stations (1 dance song for every 5 raps) suck even harder.  The easy listening stations go beyond the other two, sounds like somebody strangling a cat with a set of bagpipes, but crooner style.  Then there's the "Edge®" station: morons screaming unintelligibly into a microphone, accompanied by monotonous, three-chords-only instrument mangling apes. Yeah, I wanna hear that.  No, really.

This is in the Toronto listening area no less, with more radio stations playing a wider range of stuff than even New York City.  The suckage is nigh well universal. 

In the truck I have my cd player, I almost never put on the radio.  No point, I'm only going to hear boring music and ads, maybe a weather report if I'm lucky.  At home we have Phantom FM, courtesy of WinAmp and my cd collection.  Zero rap, all the time.  It'll be even better when I get my old LP collection ripped too.  Then we will have Kraftwerke, Yes and Genesis back to back with The Fabulous Poodles, techno, trance, the Chieftans and all the other crazy stuff I've collected in the last 40 years.  Yeah baby, that's RADIO!

I am pretty late to this technology.  It is widely spread out there and the revenue for Big Media reflects it.  Their profit figures are in the toilet, particularly ad revenue for radio and TV because nobody is listening.  Album sales are down, because with iTunes etc. you can buy the one popular song off the cd for a buck and avoid the10 crappy ones.  No more $24.95 for one good song at HMV.  You can rent the movie to see if it is worthy before buying, and avoid the $12 theater ticket too.  You can TiVo your TV and zap through all the commercials.  Etc.

Meanwhile, the entertainment industry whinges and cries that their sales are down because of  Internet piracy.  As if!  None of them are ready to admit that even kids won't buy their re-cycled crap these days, not even from iTunes, not even with video.  They don't seem to understand that there's a limit to the money even libidinous teenagers are willing to spend on some blondie singer shaking her assets in revealing outfits when the songs are boring.  Particularly when they can get hard core porn with boring music for free. 

Hopefully Big Media will do us all a favor, keep not getting it and go belly up.  NBC leading the way today with another round of layoffs.  They need to cut $750 million, almost a billion dollars in staffing costs so they are going to decimate their news division.  Because why?  Because nobody wants to see the crap they put on, so they may as well fire the dopes!  The invisible hand just grabbed 'em where it hurts and squeezed.  Thank God for Capitalism.

Disengage rant mode.  ~:D

The Raving, Ranting Phantom Music Critic

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

latest music craze? vinyl records!

Ok, this seems nuts to me as I sit here with 8 gigs of music on my hard drive. (currently listening to KOALA / Eternity is Past on Phantom FM here) Kids are snapping up vinyl albums. Seems indy artists in the UK are releasing new music on 7" singles. Kids LOVE the things. They like going to the record store too, instead of downloading from Gnutella.

Thinking back to the dark ages, I remember the first time I saw a music CD. My comment at the time seems to have been somewhat prophetic: "Gonna be hard to sort your weed on that little thing." Kids still like album covers. Amazing.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006


Just wanted to pass this along to y'all.  Here's what your American Forces are up to these days.
Hat tip to Kate at Small Dead Animals for linking to this beauty and Whit for posting it.

Personally I wouldn't even want to haul a wounded guy up that skinny-ass ladder.  War is definetly a game for the young.

The Vertiginous Phantom

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Socialists never, ever give up.

This caught my eye today, so I thought I'd break the long silence for a moment to post it.

Seems the gun grabbers are at it again with their fake suicide statistics, this time in Switzerland.
Researchers at Zurich University published a study last Tuesday showing that every day one person in Switzerland commits suicide with a firearm, usually a military weapon.

They claimed that tighter gun laws would lead to fewer suicides involving firearms in Switzerland.
So today the Swiss defense minister went on TV and reiterated all the reasons military weapons are kept at home in Switzerland. Predictably, the paper printed this crap here:
The data, published in the American Journal of Public Health, showed that Switzerland and the United States have the world's highest suicide rate involving firearms.

The researchers blamed the situation on the countries' liberal gun ownership laws.

By contrast, Australia and Canada significantly reduced the rate of successful suicides in the late 1980s by limiting the availability of guns in private households.

Following the publication of the report, left-wing politicians called for all military weapons to be securely stored outside soldiers' homes.
As per SOP, the papers neglected to mention whether or not the overal rate of suicide was affected by these wonderful gun laws. Therefore they don't have to report the abject failure of these laws to reduce the rate of suicide anywhere, ever.

Just more proof that A) the socialists have nothing new, just the same old crap B) that they don't care a damn about safety, defense, suicide or any other thing and C) that they never, ever give up.  They will not go away, they must be defeated and driven away.

The Phantom

Monday, June 26, 2006

When being a good guy isn't enough.

This is a profoundly moving pair of stories, and a powerful tactical analysis of them.  I suggest anybody who ever considered self defense with a firearm should check this out.

The Phantom

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Know thine enemy.

Behold, the noble Taliban freedom fighters
<,,3-2233426,00.html> in their
struggle with the Imperialist Great Satans, ChimpyBushitler and his
sidekicks Harper and Blair:

> “It happened twice where they pushed women and children in front of
> them. The first time they ran into a compound and pushed them out the
> front to stop the assault,” said Corporal Quintin Poll, 29, from Norfolk.
> “The second time they were firing through a building with women and
> children inside. My guys had to go around the left and right to get
> them.”
> Details of the battle, which happened to the west of the town of
> Nauzad on June 4, were given by troops at the British base of Camp
> Bastion.
Yes, truly they are noble servants of Allah fighting for social justice
and religious freedom. May they all get their 72 virgins real soon.
Today or tomorrow would be good.

The Disgusted Phantom

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Caledonia info update: US Border Patrol involved!

Well, this is certainly an interesting turn of events.  It is revealed that the Americans who had their car stolen from them by the protesters were not NY State troopers as previously mentioned.

"... incident involved the theft of a motor vehicle, which was swarmed, its occupants forcibly removed and [the] vehicle taken. An OPP officer [was] deliberately driven at by the stolen vehicle. Other officers at the scene, fortunately, pulled him to safety," Pilon said.

That vehicle was later identified as belonging to the U.S. Border Patrol. Members of that group were visiting the area to observe how provincial police were handling the standoff.

Seven arrest warrants have been issued in connection with this series of three assaults:  One on an old couple in the Canadian Tire parking lot, one on the CHTV news camera duo who was filming the old couple getting assaulted, and finally the Border Patrol getting drug out of their car and it being driven off.

Seems the Patrol got more of an eyefull of how the OPP is mis-handling the situation than they bargained for, eh?

The Phantom

Saturday, June 10, 2006

OPP definetly sitting on hands

The plot thickens in Caledonia.

The tense native standoff boiled over again last night after OPP officers arrested two townspeople during an angry clash involving up to 400 people.

Residents and aboriginals hurled racial slurs at each other over a schoolyard fence early this morning. As some 50 OPP officers in riot gear-- four with rifles visible -- moved in, the townspeople barraged them with verbal assaults, accusing them of being one-sided.

A third man was taken into custody.

Earlier yesterday, two CH TV cameramen were assaulted, allegedly by natives occupying a disputed piece of land.

About 90 minutes later, a witness said a group of natives dragged four American tourists from their SUV after they snapped a few photos of the native-occupied land despite remaining on public property.

"Two of them were off-duty New York State troopers," said a resident who lives near the attack site. "Two of them were dragged from their truck and (the natives) drove off and (went) back into their own area."

Witnesses said they drove around in the tourists' vehicle for about an hour before returning it.
No word on the camera being returned.

Thus it would appear that even though I think I'm being cynical about the government and police in this case, and even though I feel pretty cynical about it, bottom line, its just the truth.  Flagrant assaults by protesters go unremarked, townies get busted.

Put it another way, if the cops all go home the blockade will be over in a matter of minutes.  The cops are the ones keeping it in place.

Interesting government we have here, eh?

The Phantom

Friday, June 09, 2006

Caledonia standoff, OPP sits on their hands

Seems the Indians are attacking news crews right in front of the OPP, as in feet away, in broad daylight, with complete impunity.
The camera operators were filming as part of ongoing coverage of the aboriginal occupation, which started in February when Six Nations members took over a housing construction site. They say they were videotaping an altercation involving an older couple when the aboriginal protesters came running past police to attack them. Const. Keith Robb confirmed police were investigating the allegations that officers didn't intervene.
They didn't intervene the other night when a security guard got his car torched, nor when a reporter got his camera stolen last Friday.  Nor when the protesters burned the transformer station and blacked out half the county for three days, for that matter.

Looks to me like a fit-up.  Rank and file cops aren't going to stick their necks out one tiny bit, they've been told they won't get any backup from their brass or the provincial government on this one.  Protesters attacking some white guy?  Tough. 

White guy fights back?  Oooh., that's different.

Maybe enough of these attacks will embarass McGuinty into applying the law to these mooks, maybe the Provincial Court judge whose order is being roundly ignored will find the OPP in contempt and force them to move the mooks out, or maybe we will all wait until it gets cold and they will go home.  Like, in December.

My money is on December's frost.  No fun being a noble aborigional protester in the snow, eh?

The Phantom

Monday, May 22, 2006

Real fascist update.

Updating the Iranians making the Jews wear yellow tags, it would appear that the National Post has failed to fact check their story closely enough.  There is now some question as to whether the law was passed through the parliament or not.
According to the reports, Jews were to wear yellow cloth strips, called zonnar, while Christians were to wear red and Zoroastrians blue. The Simon Wiesenthal Center and Iranian expatriates living in Canada had confirmed the order had been passed, although it still had to be approved by Iran's "Supreme Guide" Ali Khamenehi before being put into effect.

Several experts are casting doubt on reports that Iran had passed a law requiring the country's Jews and other religious minorities to wear coloured badges identifying them as non-Muslims.

The Iranian embassy in Otttawa also denied the Iranian government had passed such a law.

The denial from the Iranian embassy has all the credibility of a sheep fart in a windstorm, given the behavior of their government of late.  However other people are also questioning it.

Sam Kermanian, of the U.S.-based Iranian-American Jewish Federation, said in an interview from Los Angeles that he had contacted members of the Jewish community in Iran -- including the lone Jewish member of the Iranian parliament.

They denied any such measure was in place.

Mr. Kermanian said the subject of "what to do with religious minorities" came up during debates leading up to the passing of the dress code law.

"It is possible that some ideas might have been thrown around," he said.

"But to the best of my knowledge the final version of the law does not demand any identifying marks by the religious minority groups."

Ali Reza Nourizadeh, an Iranian commentator on political affairs in London, suggested that the requirements for badges or insignia for religious minorities was part of a "secondary motion" introduced in parliament, addressing the changes specific to the attire of people of various religious backgrounds.

Mr. Nourizadeh said that motion was very minor and was far from being passed into law.

That account could not be confirmed.

Thus we have some legitimate confusion as to the actual existence of a label-the-Jews law, and whether or not it will be passed.  Seems to be hard to tell, because the Iranian government does not publish their deliberations on-line.  And again, if they did would we believe them?

The original link at the National Post has been pulled.  It would be nice if a national newspaper could fact check their stories a little closer, but we are becoming used to reading bullroar there so this is just another snafu.  Typical.

Lefties naturally are rubbing their little hands with glee.  The poo is flying fast and furious on the web sites.

However, granting for the sake of argument that this is yet another MSM snafu, and the Iranians are not going to label the Jews this week, I see no denial that they are going to pass a national dress code law.  Say that again, national dress code.  As in you show up wearing Levis, you get fined or possible beat up, jailed and then fined.  Or possibly just shot in the street like a mad dog. 

Its hard to say, because in a dictatorship life or death sometimes get decided on the spur of the moment.  If Abdul Al Whatsit the Morals Inspector had a bad falafel at lunch he may be a little cranky and just cap the first chick he sees whose ankles are showing under her burkha.  He can do that kind of thing, because the local mullah said so.

For that matter,remember that there is really nothing stopping the government from passing the label-the-Jews law another day.  That's the point.  Its a friggin' fascist dictatorship, the citizens do what they are told or get friggin' shot.

But Chimpy Bushitler my friends, he is a Fascist®!  Yea verily, it is so.

The Phantom

Friday, May 19, 2006

Oh look, REAL fascists!

Over the last several years I have grown extremely weary of the monotonous name calling from the Left.  "Bush is a fascist!"  "Harper is a fascist!"  It has become apparent that these jackdaws, of whom there there seems to be a depressingly large number, do not really know who the Fascists were or what kinds of things they did.

Well, today we have an example of true fascism in the National Post.  This here is the Real Thing my friends, a 100% authentic, numbers matching Nazi® antique enacted by Herr Hitler himself back in the 1930's and currently being revived in a country of interest to us all.  It aleady passed the "parliament", meaning their rubber stamp brigade, and awaits only the signature of the Supreme Ruler.

        's roughly 25,000 Jews would have to sew a yellow strip of cloth on the front of their clothes, while Christians would wear red badges and Zoroastrians would be forced to wear blue cloth.

They even picked the same colour.  Fill in the blank with a wild guess as to what country this is.

So let us not be under any illusions as to who the fascists are and who they are not, shall we?

The Corrective Phantom

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Fraser Report Issued

The Fraser Report has been tabled, and as expected there were serious shenanigans in the gun registry.
The former Liberal government hid more than $60 million in unexpected costs from Parliament, left no written record of important decisions taken by officials, and may have broken numerous contracting rules in its handling of the controversial gun registry, Auditor General Sheila Fraser has found.

The Canadian Firearms Program, which the Conservatives are expected to start dismantling, perhaps as early as today, has incurred $87.3 million in startup costs since 2002 - three times the budgeted amount - for a computer system that does not yet work, Fraser revealed in her long-awaited report.

This is since 2002 remember, not since the thing started in 1995.  That's a whole 'nother thing.  Plus the registry weenies have never demonstrated the registry did any good, and she says so in the report.  No wonder that was, the thing cannot in principle do any good even by accident.

This isn't the end yet either.

The criticism that the Liberals are certain to face for their handling of the gun registry may not end with this report either. Fraser's report also reveals that her office is continuing to investigate the handling of a number of the 3,642 contracts awarded for work done on the registry.

The "red flag" contracts include those worth less than $25,000 - exempting them from a competitive bidding process - whose value subsequently increased by 150 per cent; properly awarded contracts whose value increased significantly; and "fixed-price" contracts awarded in 2001 and 2002 that had no measurable goal and no record of a product being delivered.  [Emphasis mine]

"The initial value of each contract was below the $25,000 limit, but the final values were much higher: $50,000, $107,000 and $319,431," the report said. "We will be reviewing these contracts in greater detail."


The Phantom

Today's gun registry roundup.

More fun from the media today.

CTV:  Feds will deregister long guns, shotguns
Blob and Snail:  Long gun registry to be axed
Blob and Snail again: Federal gun registry is working, police say
Toronto (Red) Star: Showdown looming over gun registry
Communists Broadcasting in Canada (CBC): Tories anticipating auditor's report on gun registry
National Poost:  Fraser set to retake spotlight with politically damaging report
Toronto Sun:  Axe falls on gun registry

Noooo, we're all gonna DIEEEEEE!  Don't take away our registry!!!


The Phantom

Monday, May 15, 2006

Longest combat shot in history finally acclaimed in Canadian media.

This is absolutely the last place on Earth I would have expected to read this story, but I've got to give them the credit for a good job well done.  Macleans magazine has the story of one Cpl. Robert Furlong who bullseyed a Taliban fighter in Afganistan at a range of 2430 meters back in 2002. For the metric challenged  among us that's 2658 yards, almost exactly a mile and a half.  Longest deliberate shot taken in battle that we know of.

They cover the doing of the deed and the guy who did it, his team mates and his officers.  Then they cover the behaviour of the Canadian Armed Forces which lead eventually to the ouster of Cpl. Furlong.
Today, more than four years later, three of the five decorated snipers who served in Afghanistan are no longer in the army, brushed aside by a military machine that seemed all too willing to watch them go. Persecuted instead of praised, they fell victim to what many still believe was a witch hunt driven by jealousy and political correctness. Arron Perry was pushed out the door. Furlong left on his own, so disillusioned that he could barely stomach the thought of putting on his uniform. Graham Ragsdale -- the leader of the unit -- suffered perhaps the worst fate. Stripped of his command and later diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, he has spent the ensuing years battling deep depression.
These guys made the mistake of being excellent in an organization that was tolerated as window dressing only by the Liberal Party.  They weren't supposed to do anything, just look good in the uniform and smile for the cameras.  Trouble is, nobody told them their job was to support political correctness and ignore the greatest tradition of the Canadian military, namely kicking enemy ass.  They had the gall to be really good fighters, and so they got stomped on.

Its going to take quite a while to root out all the apple polishers and seat warmers from the officer corps.  My neighbour the Major said the Canadian Forces could probably field an entire brigade made up soley of colonels.  Hopefully Harper's boys are making a list and checking it twice.

The Phantom

galvanic twitch from the Big Red Machine

My friends, a message from a dinosaur's tail takes a loooong time to get up to its tiny pea sized brain.  Case in point, the Liberal Party dinosaur got its entire ass shot off in the December election.  Their finances are in ruins, they have no leader, no platform, no direction, their bag men are on trial for theft or already in the slammer, and Stephen Harper's Conservatives are eating the Liberal's lunch every day and kicking sand in their face. 

Yet the propaganda arm of the Big Red Machine still functions as if it were whole and complete, with Big Jean and Little Paulie at the controls.  To wit:

Sheila Frazer's report on the Gun Registry comes out tomorrow.  It is universally accepted that this report will be scathing, and many (as in not just The Phantom) think a major new Liberal scandal will finally be revealed.  Two billion bucks for a database?  That's a lot of smoke for there to be no fire. 

Harper ran on a promise to kill it, and he's expected to use this report on the registry like Buffy uses a wooden stake on a vampire.  Given that, what's in the Mainstream Media today?

The Asper's National Post:  Poll:  Canadians Don't Want Registry Scrapped
Glowball TV News, part of the Asper's media empire:  Slew of shootings in Ontario
Communist Broadcasting Canada (CBC):  Lobbyists preparing for push on gun registry, control group claims

Glob and Snail, nuttin'.
Toronto (Red) Star, nuttin'.
Hamilton Speculator (Red Star in disguise), nuttin'.

CTV: Tories likely to welcome auditor's newest report
Toronto Sun: Poll, should the Registry be scrapped?  As of 9:00AM, 87% say yes indeed.
Toronto Sun again: Win-Win Day For Tories

The spin angles boil down to:  Either outright support for the registry, a frightened silence, or Harper licking his chops in preparation for taking another big, juicy bite out of the Liberal dinosaur's butt.  Toronto Sun is the only one doing an on line poll, I guess they are the only ones with any interest in what us peons think.

So friends of the Liberals are doing a pre-emptive propaganda strike to protect their sacred cow.  That they are defending the indefensible, and that this will actually hurt the Liberals even more seems not to have occurred to them.  They are reacting as if they were still the majority and riding high.  Message that they LOST and that their story isn't selling anymore is taking a long time to sink in with these guys.

Nowhere do I see mentioned that the Canadian People® have been taken for an 18 year, umpteen billion dollar sleigh ride by their political leaders and their formerly trusted media with this whole gun control concept.  Its crap now, it was crap back when Brian Mulroney and Kim Campbell started it as a PR exercise to great media acclaim, it was crap when Alan Rock ran with it to even greater acclaim, and it will always be crap no matter how many media mavens believe in it and push it on their resisting customers.  A dollar spent on gun control would be better off burnt, but I'm not seeing anybody in the MSM saying that.  Quell suprize.

If Harper has a brain he will take a peek at the declining readership and share prices of these media outfits, read his mail and do the obvious thing:  kill the registry! Drive a whole freakin' telephone pole through its heart, stuff it with garlic, burn it and bury the ashes in a church yard with a silver spade.  On TV too.  The only way he can lose is if he wimps out and lets this thing live.

Tomorrow we shall see.

The Phantom Vampire Slayer

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Reason to keep an eye on your kid's computer.

Anybody remember the Star Wars Kid?  Seems the kid was 15, videoed himself doing a goofy light sabre skit.  Some "friends" found the tape and stuck it on the web.

Well, here's an update on him.  That piece of spite just cost his three little "friends" a chunk of cash.  Seems the exposure of this private moment pretty much ruined the kid's life at school, mum and dad sued, and now a settlement has been reached.  Numbers like $300 grand are being mentioned.  That's a big payday.

Lesson one for parents:  teach your kids not to leave video/audio lying around.
Lesson two:  teach your kids not to be vicious little shits or it could cost you BIGTIME.  You can't guarantee they won't have access to do something like this, but you can try to make sure they won't want to.

The Learned Phantom

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Damn, I'm right again. :(

Another "it sucks to be right" moment for the Invincible Phantom.

Y'all may recall one of my favorite paranoid musings is the terrorist with the model airplane.  Check it:

Momin Khawaja of Ottawa [Ontario, Canada!] was devising a way to fit a remote-controlled model airplane with explosives, a London terrorism trial of seven Britons charged with plotting to bomb sites in Britain heard yesterday.

What's more, the trial was told, a senior al-Qaeda figure in Pakistan wanted the men to unleash a simultaneous wave of bombings in Britain in 2004. Potential targets, court has heard, included a London nightclub, pubs, trains and a major mall east of the British capital.

Yesterday's revelations from star prosecution witness Mohammed Babar are the first in which a witness has said the plot was directed and controlled by Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda terrorist network.

It gets better:
Last week, the 12-member jury deciding the case heard from the Crown that Mr. Khawaja's primary role in the group was to built remote-controlled detonators to set off explosions using 600 kilograms of ammonium nitrate fertilizer the group acquired from a British agricultural merchant.
At Old Bailey yesterday, Crown prosecutor David Waters read out an e-mail in which Mr. Khawaja allegedly said that he could supply remote-controlled detonation devices, with a range of about two kilometres, for about $8 each.
Is it still paranoia if they really are out to get you?

Ok, so match this Khawaja guy's airplane up with a bit of bang bang and a bunch of nails, you've got a nasty little flying Claymore.  Lots of places that could make a hell of a mess. 

Now expand your thinking about what a "model" airplane is to include a fifteen foot wingspan and a chainsaw engine or two.  Twenty pound payload?  Uh huh.  Maybe thirty to fifty if he's really clever.  That's a nasty BIG Claymore.  GPS robotic control too, that means launch and forget, read about it in the paper tomorow while you build another one.  Because you launched it at night and nobody saw you, and you programmed the thing to fly around for a while before it made its bombing run so nobody can track it back to the launch site.  Complex and juvenile in conception, but then terrorists like the showy stuff.

Now think about some of Saddam's "missing" WMDs and a model airplane.  Chemical weapons.  Woo.

Finally, this creep was living in Ottawa, capital of Canada, where the Parliament buildings and stuff are.  Think "model airplane" and "Parliament buildings" in the same sentence for just a second.

Kinda puts the anti-American, anti-war Liberals into rather stark perspective don't it?  Let me make it a little more stark for you.  They've know about this guy and his little airplane plans for two years at least.  Paul Martin: too stupid to come in out of the rain.

The Flyin' Phantom

Friday, March 24, 2006

Possible connection found between gravity and magnetism.

A possible major, MAJOR breakthrough in physics was announced today.
Just as a moving electrical charge creates a magnetic field, so a moving mass generates a gravitomagnetic field. According to Einstein's Theory of General Relativity, the effect is virtually negligible. However, Martin Tajmar, ARC Seibersdorf Research GmbH, Austria; Clovis de Matos, ESA-HQ, Paris; and colleagues have measured the effect in a laboratory.

Their experiment involves a ring of superconducting material rotating up to 6 500 times a minute. Superconductors are special materials that lose all electrical resistance at a certain temperature. Spinning superconductors produce a weak magnetic field, the so-called London moment. The new experiment tests a conjecture by Tajmar and de Matos that explains the difference between high-precision mass measurements of Cooper-pairs (the current carriers in superconductors) and their prediction via quantum theory. They have discovered that this anomaly could be explained by the appearance of a gravitomagnetic field in the spinning superconductor (This effect has been named the Gravitomagnetic London Moment by analogy with its magnetic counterpart).

Small acceleration sensors placed at different locations close to the spinning superconductor, which has to be accelerated for the effect to be noticeable, recorded an acceleration field outside the superconductor that appears to be produced by gravitomagnetism. "This experiment is the gravitational analogue of Faraday's electromagnetic induction experiment in 1831.
It demonstrates that a superconductive gyroscope is capable of generating a powerful gravitomagnetic field, and is therefore the gravitational counterpart of the magnetic coil. Depending on further confirmation, this effect could form the basis for a new technological domain, which would have numerous applications in space and other high-tech sectors" says de Matos. Although just 100 millionths of the acceleration due to the Earth’s gravitational field, the measured field is a surprising one hundred million trillion times larger than Einstein’s General Relativity predicts.
Pending confirmation of the results, one may speculate that we are watching the dawn of a new species of technology here.  This is nothing other than artificial gravity, my friends.  Anti-gravity.  Reactionless space drives run by solar energy.  Crazy stuff we can't even imagine yet.  We stand in the same place as Faraday, with who-knows-what kind of miracles stretched out in front of us.  Gravity can be manipulated by electro-magnetic means!  Hot DAMN, ladies and gentlemen!

This is an exciting time to be alive my friends!

The Stoked Phantom

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Lovely Chicom tradition comes to Britain.

Word of a new Chinese tradition has been received in Britain today:
A Chinese cosmetics company has been using skin taken from the bodies of executed convicts to develop beauty products for sale in Europe, a London newspaper reported.  [The Guardian, so get out your salt shaker.]

An agent for the company informed customers it is developing collagen for lip and wrinkle treatments from skin taken from prisoners after they had been shot.

The agent said some of the company‘s products have been exported to Britain, and that the use of skin from condemned convicts was “traditional" and nothing to “make such a big fuss about,“ the Guardian reported.
Face cream made from actual faces. Lovely!  I'd be too corny for a B horror movie, wouldn't it? 

I'll be interested to hear how the Lefties spin this, their good buddies in Chicomland using the flayed skin of executed prisoners [cough!-political dissidents-cough!] to develop new cosmetics.  Wonder if they take the skin off before or after they shoot 'em?  D'oh!  China, land of oportunity where Girl Scout cookies may contain real Girl Scouts.

No doubt PETA will aprove.  Why test on animals when you can get The Real Thing® ?

The Phantom

(quite beyond being shocked anymore and finding that the hardest, most sour-faced cynicism he can muster falls short of reality time and again.)

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

post mortem on the Liberals = typical media missing it

If this is what CBC's Larry Zolph really believes, the Canadian media is missing it worse than I thought.

Here in Mr. Zolph's own words are his thoughts on the pivotal point of the election:

Martin made one particularly fatal blunder. He could have visited the troops in Afghanistan over Christmas 2005, in the middle of the campaigning for the Jan. 23 federal election.

If he had, he would have been the hero of the troops and stolen the campaign momentum away from Harper's one-a-day policy announcements.

Not visiting the troops was probably one of the smartest things Martin did during the election. He at least knew that the Canadian people would take a dim view of any politician using Canadian troops in a war zone as photo-op material. For Martin particulary it would have been suicide.

The history of the Liberal Party since the Trudeaupian Era has been to starve the military and ignore it as much as possible when they aren't trying to turn it into some kind of socialy progressive police force. One need only visit the government controled military museums in this country to get the feeling that warriors are not well respected. Great battles are not recounted, great victories not celebrated, there aren't even any guns on display. Instead there are depictions of nurses, food being delivered, and lots of smiling blue helmets posing with little kids. You have to go to a private museum to see actual pride in the military.

Fortunately this careful official depiction is a lie, as evidenced by the strong performance of the troops to date in Afghanistan. But it is the view of the Liberal Party of what is desirable in a Canadian military man, and it is what they have been working for since the 1970's. Well, when they work at all that is.

Furthermore, Team Martin and the previous Chretien team were making points with vaguely peacenik urban woolly heads by bashing George Bush for his war in Iraq. You can't be blasting the Yanks for being in a war and then run off to be with the troops in your own war, coincidentally fighting in support of those damn war mongering Yankies.

Proof of this thought is the huge aproval Harper has received for his genuine support of the Afghan mission and the military generally. For Martin to go to Afghanistan would have been a cynical lie and a disaster. For Harper to go was a vindication and a triumph. That dichotomy is what killed the Liberals, not Martin dropping the ball.

So what is Larry Zolph thinking? He's thinking Harper and all Conservatives are a bunch of idiots, that's what. He can't understand how the Big Red Machine failed to beat these hayseeds, its gotta be Martin's fault.

He's completely missing the fact that Canadians (outside Toronto anyway) are sick of the Liberal fluffy bunny aproach to the military and terrorism. They see the Americans out there kicking bad-guy ass with all kinds of super duper ass kicking equipment, then they look at our 40 year old helicopters lying upside down on top of 30 year old warships. They see the PPCLI sent to the brown Afghan desert in green uniforms. They see 20 year old soldiers driving Iltis jeepy things ten years older than they are with zero armor protection. They see the Danish Navy hoisting the Danish flag on a Canadian arctic island, and are told we have nothing that can get soldiers up there to do something about it. They see the Canadian Forces renting skidoos because they don't have their own. Worst of all, they know if the Liberals are running the show they are going to keep right on seeing it, because that's what the Liberals are all about. Not just Martin, the whole party.

Wake up and smell the coffee Larry! It's going to take a lot more than clever political deck-chair arrangements and better lying to get the Liberal Party off that reef they drove themselves up on. And Bob "Ray Days" Ray ain't the one going to git 'er done, that is for sure.

The Phantom

Friday, February 17, 2006

Why the NDP is dangerous.

Big brain Peter Kormos of the Ontario NDP has what he thinks is a great idea.

New Democrat member Peter Kormos introduced a private member's bill Thursday that would presume consent for organ donations from any dying patient who hasn't already made their wishes clear.

It would reverse the current system, which requires people to sign a donor card and obtain the consent of family before any organs or tissue can be harvested.

"Presume consent" means that unless you specifically tell the hospital that you DON'T want your organs harvested, they take 'em.  And since the hospital employs the people who declare you dead, they decide when to take 'em too.

  Canadians have no right to property, as I've been at some pains to point out over the years.  What's yours is only yours so long as there's no law saying otherwise, and such a law is no farther away than three readings in the House and Crown consent.  They could blow that off in an afternoon if there was a hurry on it. Taxes, expropriations, you name it, they can do it. 

The NDP has decided that having the power to take all your money and posessions is not enough.  They want your ASS.  And your liver, heart, kidneys, lungs, corneas, skin, blood and guts too.  In a good cause, of course.  Almost makes you want to take up smoking and liquor, just to fuck them up.

This never knowing when enough is enough is what makes the NDP dangerous.  I look forward to voting against them in every election from now until they part out my still-warm corpse.

The Phantom of many parts.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

A study in headlines.

The National Poost: "Tory backbencher says he will kill gun registry"

The Toronto (Red) Star:  "Tories load up to kill gun registry"

The Glob and Snail:  "Tories paint bulls-eye on long-gun registry"

Media message:  Oh no, those scary Tories are gonna KILL something!

Translation from Mediaspeak to real world:  Conservative Party acts quickly to keep campaign promise. 

They are doing what they said they were going to do, dismantle the gun registry ASAP.  Clearly this is not what the Big Three papers want, with all this talk of killing things.  A figure of speech perhaps, but a revealing one.

The Phantom

Monday, February 13, 2006

Top Democrat deserts the sinking ship of fools.

Now THIS is schweeet!

In a stunning break with her party, the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee said Sunday that the New York Times should be prosecuted for damaging national security by revealing the National Security Agency's top secret terrorist surveillance program authorized by President Bush.

"If the press was part of the process of delivering classified information, there have to be some limits on press immunity," Rep. Jane Harman told NBC's "Meet the Press."

Moderator Tim Russert then pressed: "But if [the NSA leak] came from a whistleblower, should the New York Times reporter be prosecuted?"

Harman countered: "Well, it's not clear it was a whistleblower. You have to prove that first."

I guess not all the DemocRats are blind lemmings in an election year, eh?  Bwahaha!

The Phantom

More on Jonathon Logan.

More about Jonathon Logan's case and the OPP's misbehaviour in court.  The spelling is a bit dodgy but the info is good.

The Phantom

VICTORY!!! Jonathon Logan aquitted, 3 years later.

Victory in a just cause, Jonathon Logan has won his case against the OPP.
A Provincial Court Judge yesterday ruled a police takedown and public strip search of a Baxter man who was legally hunting groundhogs was unconstitutional and illegal.

The ruling came almost three years after Jonathan Login, 32, found himself face-down in the driveway of his rural home in Baxter, Ont., surrounded by a team of OPP and military officers with high-powered weapons trained on his head.

Next thing he knew, his pants were down around his knees while a gloved officer performed an anal cavity search as his weeping wife and children hugged and kneeled on the ground in terror, and neighbours looked on.

“The arrest was unlawful and unconstitutional,” Justice Jon-Jo Douglas said as lawyers and Login stood before him. “The police had not a wit of evidence to suggest he was operating a firearm dangerously.
The really alarming thing about this case was the no-brainer it was.  The cops had BUPKIS on the guy, nothing but an inquiring phone call.  Even the judge says " not a wit of evidence" which is pretty strong.  But here we are after three years still screwing around in court, because the OPP closed ranks.  The previous charges against the police involved were dropped by the Crown in a lovely piece of chicanery.  I guess we shall see if this judgement gives Mr. Logan any traction in his pursuit of justice against these creeps.

I'm not holding my breath.

The Phantom

Friday, February 10, 2006

European leaders, their proudest moment to date.

As we know there has been a carefully coordinated uproar over those Danish cartoons of Mohamed.  The bloody handed dictatorships of Iran and Syria have arranged top burn down their Danish embassies and pull a few more stunts too.  Typical thugocracy behaviour, 100% expected.

Here's the European Union's response:
The European Union may try to draw up a media code of conduct to avoid a repeat of the furore caused by the publication across Europe of cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad, an EU commissioner said today.

In an interview with Britain's Daily Telegraph, EU Justice and Security Commissioner Franco Frattini said the charter would encourage the media to show ''prudence'' when covering religion.

''The press will give the Muslim world the message: We are aware of the consequences of exercising the right of free expression,'' he told the newspaper. ''We can and we are ready to self-regulate that right.'' The cartoons, which first appeared in a Danish newspaper last September before being reprinted across Europe, sparked a wave of protests around the world.
I don't think "cheese eating surrender monkeys" quite captures the craven nature of that statement.  Reminds me of the old WWII joke about Italian tanks having one forward speed and four reverse.

Were I a European newspaper editor, I'd print a new cartoon every single day and dare the EU bastards to jail me for it.  You either have free speech or you don't.

The Phantom

Thank Hollywood for this.

Is America Dodge City?  No.  Even Dodge City wasn't Dodge City, if you read the history instead of the pulp novels.  But abroad everybody thinks it is.  This is the direct result of 90 years of Hollywood and later the TV telling one and all that High Noon was America.  Too many Kojac re-runs eh?

Good going, Hollywood.

The Phantom

Thursday, February 09, 2006

What happens when Liberals cooperate with Chicoms

Wakeup call for Yahoo today that they made a deal with the devil.  Google, take note.
Yahoo Inc. provided evidence to Chinese authorities that led to the imprisonment of an Internet writer, lawyers and activists said on Thursday, the second such case involving the U.S. Internet giant.

The company cooperated with Chinese police in a case that led to the 2003 arrest of Li Zhi, who was charged with subverting state power and sentenced to eight years in prison after trying to join the dissident China Democracy Party, writer Liu Xiaobo said.


"The firm says it simply responds to requests from the authorities for data without ever knowing what it will be used for," Reporters Without Borders said in a statement.

"But this argument no long holds water. Yahoo certainly knew it was helping to arrest political dissidents and journalists, not just ordinary criminals," it said.

I find it hard to believe that there are enough hard eyed capitalists at Yahoo to make this China deal knowing this would happen.  The age of the robber barons is over.  In this age of executive sensitivity training and PC everything, no way.

No, these guy were "given assurances" by "highly placed Communist Party officials".  The officials said "Yes, in the time of Mao it was very common, but we don't do that kind of thing anymore.  Bad for business you know!  Ha ha ha!"  And they smiled and had lunch.

Basically they lied. Like Persian carpets they lied.  Chicoms do that sometimes.  And the Yahoo idiots believed them.  And so did the Google idiots.  In defense of these California doofi, the Chicom spokesman was probably very nice.

Liberals don't really believe in tyranny I think.  You tell them about death camps and people going to jail for anti-Party writing and forced abortions and all that stuff and they nod and say how terrible.  But they don't get it.  At the most basic emotional level they just ignore it, because in their rose coloured world people aren't capable of that.  So when they make deals with the Chicoms they believe what the nice Chicom spokesman tells them. 

Then there's the arrogance of Liberalism.  This time it'll be different!  This time, because its us Liberals on the job, they won't do anything bad because of our superior moral character and Good Intentions.  We will show them a Better Way, and they will be reformed into good people by their association with us.

Yeah, that sounds about right. Bet there's some serious uproar at Yahoo headquarters today, as people realize those assurances aren't worth the fancy paper they are written on.

The Hard Eyed Phantom

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

What would happen in Kanada?

Here's a story I like.
Grandma kills robber with gun. I like that. Its so much better than
what I read in Ontario papers, which is "Robber with gun kills
Grandma". This one's got extra spice too, because the robber laid there
four hours before the cops came. Check it:

> As the man was breaking through a storm door that leads into the house
> itself, the woman fired several shots through her front door, striking
> Tillman once in the chest.
> Police said the shots were fired from a pistol, most likely a gun that
> her daughter had given her after a man broke into the elderly woman's
> house in December, battered her and stole some items.
> <>
> The man may have been dead for as long as four hours before police
> arrived. Police said that the woman was not sure that she had hit
> Tillman when she fired the shots about 2 a.m. However, she was too
> afraid to go outside to check and could not call for help because the
> telephone lines were dead.
> When the woman's daughter arrived about 6 a.m. to bring her mother
> breakfast, she found the dead man on the porch, police said.

Shit for brains pulled the phone lines before attempting his B&E,
probably because he was planning something real special for Grandma.

I don't generally condone shooting blind through a door because you
never know who that is out there for sure. Better to let them do all
the work of getting the door open and then blast 'em once you know who
it is. But, that assumes a physically fit defender and only one bad
guy. If you're a little old lady with only a pistol, and you don't know
how many there are out there but you know they're robbers, better to
shoot through the door.

However, the question arises, what would happen to Grandma in Canada?
She's not allowed to have that pistol, for starters. She's also not
allowed to fire on robbers, you have to call for the police and you have
to run away first. 100% for certain she'd be charged with illegal
posession of a restricted weapon AND improper storage, probably they'd
charge her with murder and reckless discharge of a firearm too.

Given the high profile of the case they would then plea bargain away the
gun charges and the murder to manslaughter, she might get off. But the
legal fees would ruin her financially, she'd certainly lose any savings
she had and she'd lose the house. All because she didn't let some
goblin in to possibly kill/rape/beat her and certainly rob her. Great

Canada has a ways to go, I'd say.

The Phantom

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Liberals can't let go of the gun issue.

Great.  Juuuust great.  We dodge the bullet of a federal Liberal party baning guns, now we are looking at the Ontario Liberal party trying it on.
Ontario should have the right to ban handguns and will, if necessary, go looking for the power to outlaw "these weapons of human misery," Attorney General Michael Bryant says.And if Ottawa doesn't give provinces the power to ban such weapons, Bryant said, Ontario "will have to look at the narrow constitutional opportunities that are available to us."
Bryant, arguing it's time for gun collectors to call it a day, said handgun ownership should be limited to police, the military and Olympic sharpshooters."Nobody needs to have a handgun in their house, and nobody should because of the dangers caused even by safe storage of these weapons of human misery," Bryant said yesterday.
So Mikey, you genius you, how does one become an Olympic sharp shooter if nobody can keep a gun around to practice with?  And we wonder why the thugs are taking over Toronto, Lord thunderin'.

Frankly I think he's flapping his gums, because they don't have the power to do that.  Guns are federal jurisdiction only.  But let us consider the reason for all the gum flapping here.  What happened?  Well, an evile, socially irresponsible, GUN collector allowed his eeeevile collection of "weapons of human misery" to be purloined by the criminal element. 
The attorney general's comments came a day after an Oshawa gun collector reported the theft of 40 registered handguns, stolen from his home as he lay in hospital recuperating from a stroke. The weapons are the latest stolen in a rash of break-ins at the homes of gun collectors in the Greater Toronto area.
The BASTARD!  The nerve of him having a stroke like that!  So what heinous implements of mass death did this NAZI WAR CRIMINAL have in his unwholesome posession?
Prized guns in the collection were 10 mint-condition German Lugers, the kind Col. Klink wore as he ran the prison camp on TV's Hogan's Heroes. They ranged from 1915 to 1940 models and were in their original boxes."These guns alone were worth more than $10,000," he said. Foster estimates the collector value of the entire collection to be more than $50,000
Makes you want to cry.  At least the friggin' cops didn't charge the old man like they did this guy.  Probably because he lives in Oshawa and not Toronto.  T.O. jerks would have charged him I bet, right there in his hospital bed.

The Phantom

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Its different for reporters!

On Drudge right now, 10:30 AM Thursday:
**Exclusive** ABCNEWS executives have not viewed the video footage that was being taped when anchorman Bob Woodruff was injured by an explosive in Iraq, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned.... The tape has remained in the original camera, a well-placed ABC source explained Thursday morning. ABC executives made the controversial decision not to remove the tape from the camera. "It is not first, second, or third on anyone's mind," said the insider.
Interesting.  I've been saying for years that this kind of tape should not be aired.  In vain, because we keep seeing  people getting blown up, shot, burned, hacked to death, etc. on the news and in print.  How many times did we see the US soldier shoot that wounded terrorist?  At least a hundred.  How many times have we seen the Vietnamese officer shoot the bound prisoner?  Too many.  These scenes are commonplace.  US soldiers dying, people nobody knows or cares about getting the chop are regular fodder for the evening news. 

But Bob Woodruff being blown up?  Well, that's different isn't it?

Do us all a favor ABC, burn the goddamn tape.  At least it will be one atrocity I don't have to have seared into my scarred-up brain tissue by endless repetition.  I really, really don't want to see that.

The Phantom

Good news, Harper snubbed by world leaders.

There's a saying in the computer biz, you can tell a good idea by the enemies it makes.  Seems Mr. Harper has some of those good ideas, he's made all the right people mad.

Canada has been dropped from a global club of "progressive" nations because of the election of a new federal government headed by Stephen Harper.

Former prime minister Jean Chretien and his Liberal successor, Paul Martin, made overseas trips in 2003 and 2004 respectively to join British Prime Minister Tony Blair, South African President Thabo Mbeki, former U.S. president Bill Clinton and a host of other "centre-left" political luminaries at self-proclaimed "Progressive Governance Summits" in London and Budapest.

If they'd invited him I'd have been a bit put out.  ~:D

The Phantom

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Next killer app on the computer will be:


Google has been watching you:

Until now, Chinese net users who were blocked from accessing a site knew that the information was there and was being kept from them by their own government. From now on it is Google which will be keeping data from them, in direct contradiction of its own declared mission “to organise the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful”.

The reaction to Google’s move has been highly critical. The watchdog organisation Reporters Without Borders called it “a black day for freedom of expression in China”, adding that “Google’s statements about respecting online privacy are the height of hypocrisy in view of its strategy in China”. It seemed that the company’s real motto was something more along the lines of “don’t be evil unless the Chinese government asks you to and there’s serious money in it”.

What having the servers in China means for Chinese surfers is that every goddamn thing they do on-line can be observed in real time by some Party apparatchik, or stored and analyzed by some kind of program that pings if they search for the wrong thing.  Like "freedom" or some such dire concept.

But gee Phantom, can't the eeeevile Chimpybushilter gubmint do the same thing?  Technically, yes, the capability exists.  Practically, no.  Its politically impossible for them to strong arm that info out of Google, and if they tried it they'd be sorry.  Besides, that's why they have the NSA watching for specific keywords.  They don't need Google if they can sift out terrorist communiques from the flood.

However this may not always be the case.  Let some terrorist do something serious, and that could turn on a dime.  Google would be falling all ovver itself to offer up whatever they've got.  Or:
So far everyone who has invested in Google has made out like the proverbial bandit; but one day the share price will drop and people who have bought shares will find they have lost money. It is then that Google’s leaders will come under pressure to find some uses for that goldmine of personal data.
Read the whole article, its an eye opener for sure.

At any rate, if I'm any observer of human nature one thing that bugs the hell out of people is somebody looking over their shoulder all the time.  The idea that some government bastard in some cube farm in Maryland is looking at and passing judgement on one's web use, opinions and general existence is galling in the extreme.  But at least we can vote them out if they become annoying.  Free country and all.

The idea that some other, different bastard is going to SELL that data, not only to the highest bidder but to anyone and everyone with the price, that's beyond galling and getting into the danger zone.

So while it probably won't be possible to remain private from government eyeballs, I predict the next killer app for computer users is the Google Spoofer.  I mean, what's the point of using a pseudonym if you're leaving your DNA all over every server on the web, right?

I wonder if Anonymizer is on the stock market?

The Phantom

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Why we call The Star "Pravda".

The Toronto Star once again earns its unoffical moniker, Pravda.  This is possibly the most blatantly editorial "news" piece I've ever seen.
Dozens of high-powered weapons that have flooded Toronto streets were stolen from a well-known gun collector and firearms instructor who kept his dangerous stash in a subsidized housing apartment in Scarborough.One of the guns taken from the apartment was used last September in one of the worst bloodbaths in the history of Toronto - a triple murder near the end of the Summer of the Gun, in a year marked by the worst gun violence the city has seen. Today, the collector, Mike Hargreaves, is a fugitive from Canadian justice, living in a modest, two-storey stucco home a few kilometres from Disney World. Many of the 32 to 35 guns stolen from his Toronto apartment (machine guns, Glock handguns and assault rifles) are still on the streets.
That's just the opening paragraph, and already there's a problem with it.  Mr. Hargreaves has been charged with improper storage.  But get this:
Working for two days, thieves used sledgehammers and blowtorches to blast open the 1,700-pound, concrete-and-steel Brinks safe. They made off with about 35 guns, including military assault rifles, machine guns, and semi-automatic pistols, a bullet pressing machine and dozens of rounds of ammunition.
Two days?  It took them two friggin' days to break the safe, and Hargreaves gets charged with improper storage?  I wouldn't come back for that steamroller derby either.  Chance of justice, zero.  Chance of jail, 100%.  Gotta have a fall guy, y'know.

But whatever, here's my absolute favorite quote from the article.
Hargreaves says housing officials were unaware that he was storing firearms near families with children.
Yeah, in a safe that took two days for yobs with cutting torches and sledge hammers to break into.  What a bastard!  What a danger to the community!  Those poor chilllldren.

The Phantom

Friday, January 27, 2006

Ripping off the sheets of the Canadian Left.

This is the response of the peace-love-dove Left to Monday's election:  NUKE THE AMERICANS!

Seems Robert McClelland thinks the only real threat to Canada is America, and we should "accuire" nuclear weapons to use on them if they get rowdy.  This is what passes for thought on the Left.  Robert seems to have forgotten that Canada is a ribbon 3000 miles long and 200 miles wide, tight up against the US border.  Anything large we throw at them will splash on us.  Typical Lefty.  Then there's the whole missile thing, as in we don't have any.  Kinda hard to nuke New York without a missile.

I love watching the Left come apart in this country.  Its sooo good on them.  The more we Conservative leaning types win the louder and more insane the Left becomes.  Louder please!

The fact of the matter is that the only real threat to Canadian sovereignty in the last thirty years has been the Liberal Party of Canada.  If we want to be in charge of the North West Passage (if it ever melts) all we need to do is patrol it.  You know, with airplanes and ships and stuff.  Maybe a couple of submarines to keep track of the Russians.  The reason we don't have that stuff right now is the Liberals.  Maybe the Harperites will buy some, that'd be nice.

Still, if we need nuclear weapons we are in a good position, we have lots of Candu reactors lying around to brew up weapons grade fuel in.  After all, that's what the Indians and the Pakistanis used to make their nuke bombs:  Canadian Candu reactors.  Sold to them by Canada.  No shit.

Didn't know that, didja?

The Phantom

Thursday, January 26, 2006

This is a giggle. :)

It would seem that my  Unitarian Jihad name is:  Brother Sharpened Screwdriver of Enlightened Debate.  Odd, yet somehow appropriate.  ~:D  Get yours here.

These wags even have a Wiki article.  Wiki waggy woo.

The Phantom

Question du jour.

The Question of the day is:

How great a fool is Algore?

Quoth he:

"The election in Canada was partly about the tar sands projects in Alberta," Gore said Wednesday while attending the Sundance Film Festival in Utah.

"And the financial interests behind the tar sands project poured a lot of money and support behind an ultra-conservative leader in order to win the election . . . and to protect their interests."

Now, I haven't looked to see what corporations gave what money to Harper and the Tories.  But I don't have to.  If Algore's canard had even a grain of truth to it the Liberals and NDP would have been all over it like ugly on a wart hog.  He's flat-out lying.  As usual.

But that just makes him a weasel.  What makes him a fool is that he's lying about something that is so easy to check.  $1000 is the maximum donation for an individual or corporation in this country.  Only the Moveon.dork crowd is going to give this a moment's thought.

The Phantom

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Britian quietly takes the next step down the road

British police are begining to show a rather frightening side.  They arrive and start making inquiries after comments are made on radio and TV shows.  Here's a beauty example:

TWYFORD strawberry farmer Eric Jarnet is fuming after police confiscated his shotgun on his 70th birthday because they feared he might emulate Norfolk farmer Tony Martin.

Mr Martin became a national figure after the shotgun killing of a burglar at his farmhouse.

An exasperated Mr Jarnet publicly admitted he might "do a Martin" after raiders stole hundreds of yards of irrigation piping from his 25-acre Twyford Fruit Farm in London Road, effectively putting him out of business.

Moments after he made his remarks police arrived to seize his shotgun, for which he has a licence.


Police spokesman Tim Wiseman said: "If anyone is making these public comments then we have a duty to check them out. Firearms, particularly in West Berkshire, are a sensitive issue."

"Concerns were passed to police following comments Mr Jarnet made on a local radio station. Thames Valley Police have a duty to make sure that no risk exists."

"We obviously had to respond to this and a firearms inquiries officer went round, and Mr Jarnet surrendered his gun."

That's a further step down the road to perdition, eh?  Thieves wipe out a guy's business, he gets interviewed on radio and pops off a bit about what he'd like to do to the scum that just ruined him, and THE COPS COME FOR HIM.  Next step, 2 AM no-knock warrant service on political undesirables.

Good thing the Conservatives just won in Canada eh?  ~:D

The Phantom



The Conservative party of Canada has won a minority government!  Hoowah!  Martin has resigned.  All is right with the world.

The election results make it clear that most of geographical Canada is Conservative, with Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver addicted to redistributionism.  That's ok, I don't care.  A CPC majority would have been nice, but a minority will keep their heads from getting too big.  That's never a bad thing in government I think.

The real victory today is that the control of the vast regulatory machinery goes to someone who won't use it for his own ends, and will (if he keeps his promises!) start taking it apart.  Begining, I hope, with gun control.

The Phantom

Monday, January 23, 2006

British gun experiment continues on as expected.

Britian's experiment with letting Big Brother do it all is going as expected:  badly.

Record levels of gun crime are being blamed on the fact that more people than ever are carrying firearms as fashion accessories.

Figures published this week by the Home Office are expected to show that offences involving guns have soared by as much as 50 per cent in some parts of the country.

The greatest rises have been in the number of people found in possession of firearms and in the number of attempted murders.

Proving once again that Big Brother cannot keep you safe from the Bad People. 

The important thing to take home from this Independent article is not that the British Police are incompetent.  They are very competent.  Its just that they are trying to do something that is impossible.  As in can't be done.  Nobody can do it.  Not gonna happen no matter how much money gets spent or how many CCTV cameras there are.  Big Brother is a sham.

He can however take everything you have and kick your ass besides, so perhaps voting for the Big Brother party isn't such a good idea.

Here in Canada we have four (4) Big Brother parties, Liberals, NDP, Bloc Quebecois and Greens.  We used to have five, because the Progressive Conservatives were right into Big Brother.  Not a good thing.

With their demise we now have the Conservative Party of Canada, CPC, who are not into Big Brother.  Little Brother maybe.  They think that government is good, but perhaps we could do with just a little less of it.  Canada looks after the poor and downtrodden, but if you are not in dire straights maybe you should just get on with it and not be holding your hand out.

So I voted for them this morning, and their campaign signs are all over my front lawn.  Hopefully tonight will see the CPC form the government, and then we shall see if my assessment is correct.

The Phantom

Harper speaks the essence.

Mr. Harper may look like a robot, he is after all a pretty stiff guy.  But when it comes to pithy statements of truth, he's got a knack.  Here's as good an encapsulation of the whole campaign as I've seen from anyone.  h/t Neal News.
Harper was asked about the Liberal strategy of the last several days that seemed bent on getting voters to hate Conservatives and Harper. "Canadians don't hate things. That is not the nature of Canadians. Canadians can disagree but it takes a lot to get Canadians to intensely hate something or hate somebody and usually it involves hockey."
Now THAT is a Canadian Value.  Hate and fear don't sell well in Canada.  The West does not hate and fear Quebec.  They're irritated for sure, but a righting of a few wrongs, a gesture of respect or two and they will be ok with the whole thing.  Likewise Ontario does not hate and fear the West or Quebec. 

There are hateful and fearful examples from Moronto (subset of Toronto:), but these people are Lefty and Righty fringy types.  The fringe isn't the mainstream, its where the fruitloops go to rave.

So the spectacle of Martin running from Victoria to Halifax, trying to create hate and fear between regions of the country, just for his own personal benefit, that was really something.  What a wanker.  Even the media couldn't stand it this time.

Go forth and vote Conservative today, would be my advice.

The Phantom

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Latest thing in guns gets a test drive by US military

Its Metal Storm, finally getting a go from the Yanks.  Hot damn!  This is the first genuinely new idea in firearms since the gas-operated self loader.
Next month a new high-explosive munition will be fired in Singapore and then tested again by the U.S. Army, heralding what may be a sea change in weaponry: a gun that can fire 240,000 rounds per minute.
Well, make that a rate of 240,000 per minute.  The thing is more like a Claymore mine that you can aim.  But you can make the barrels any size, from pistol rounds to howitzers.  Recoil is probably the limiting factor.

Just the thing to stick on a UAV though, eh?  Nice area weapon.  Drift in, hit the target with 800 rounds in two seconds flat, scoot.  Awesome.  Nice thing to have mounted on a pintle on top of your truck too.  Omar lobs a mortar round at you, this thing locks on and obliterates it in half a second.  Reload and blast Omar while he fiddles with his mortar.  Hoowah.

The Bloodthirsty Phantom

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Official Canadian Government Policy on Gun Owners: GET OUT!

h/t to Kate at SDA and Steve at Angry.

Lots of people over the years have intimated to me that I am a paranoid nutcase.  I've been saying the Liberal Party (and the NDP too for that matter) has declared war on gun owners.  They intend to ban guns, but more than that they intend to punish anyone insane enough to even want one.  That seems nuts, right?

I wish it was.
Don Lindsay's self destruction continued when club member and Canadian Veteran George Tompkins stood to ask the candidates his question. "If the handgun ban goes forward.  What plan would your party offer to compensate those of us who legally own the guns that would be confiscated?"  To which Lindsay replied "Sir America is our neighbor not our nation, if you elect a society that talks about that kind of perspective I suggest that perhaps you go there!" 
Mr. Lindsay is a Liberal MP.  One could say he's just one guy having a meltdown, but Paul Martin has said this kind of thing before, on national TV too.  You want to own a gun?  Move to America, damn you!  That's official policy of the ruling party, kids.  Kinda scary eh?

Good thing there's an election!

The Phantom

Friday, January 20, 2006

One more reason to vote Conservative.

It'll torque off Michael Moore.  BWAHAHA!!!

The Phantom

So much for "no harm".

Interesting news on the health front, serious STDs have increased dramatically of late.

According to the Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, these rates have surged, despite an ongoing barrage of publicity about safe sex.

  • The rate of chlamydia rose by 70 per cent to almost 30,000 cases in 2004. People aged 15 to 24 mostly had the infection.
  • Gonorrhea infections went up by 80 per cent to 4,013 cases in 2004. Men aged 20 to 29 had the highest rate of infection. Among women, those aged 15 to 24 had the highest number of cases of gonorrhea.
  • Syphilis infections rose by a whopping 908 per cent to 598 cases in 2004. Men mainly over the age of 30 had syphilis, with a significant proportion of its transmission occurring between homosexuals.
Note that the Society is a proper doctor's organization, not some fruitloop Conservative propaganda machine.

Now, as I recall the Supreme Court of Canada recently found that because "sex clubs" (i.e. places where strangers go to do it all different ways with other strangers and pay money for the privelige) caused no "harm" to society, they were legal and that the owners could not be charged under local bawdy house regs.

I point out that this current increase in STDs is NOT due to such clubs, because there pretty much aren't any.  Maybe ten or twenty in the whole country, max.  But should such establishments become as common as strip clubs, or more likely should strip clubs turn into sex clubs, we could be looking at some pretty serious business.

But hey, the Supreme Court aren't activist judges, noooo.  That Harper, what a maroon.

The Phantom

Al Qaeda targets Alaska pipeline.

So much for the peace through superior groveling crowd.  From the National Post today:
B.C.'s energy sector is on heightened alert after an al-Qaida-affiliated Internet blog message called on Canadian and U.S. jihadists to attack an Alaskan oil pipeline.
"The most suitable candidates for these operations are our American Muslim brothers who live on the land of trash . . . Also, we can add to this jihad group any other groups who can reach the American terrorist regime, either directly or through neighbouring countries, like Canada or Mexico," the posting says.

What is even better is that Canadian Forces doesn't have the equipment or the manpower to secure that pipeline.  If it needs to be protected, American troops are going to be the ones doing it.  We don't have the aircraft, helicopters nor even SNOWMOBILES to put men on the ground fast if they are needed.  We don't have the fancy surveillance gear.  We don't have anything, really.  Well, other than a really nice collection of 1960's military antiques.  Some of the stuff still works too!

Thank you Mr. Chretien, Mr. Martin and especially Mr. Trudeau.  Good thinking, you saps.

The Phantom

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Liberal "thinking" on crime.

Sometimes you read something, and you just shake your head.  This is one of those time
After an unprecedented summer of gun deaths in Toronto, two senior provincial ministers, the Attorney-General and the Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services, endorsed a sweeping plan to create an "offender-focused" justice system.
Ok, so what does "offender focused" mean in English when translated from Liberal Bafflegab?  It means they were going to let more criminals out earlier and close some jails, that's what. 

No, I'm not kidding.  I wish, but no.  This is really what they really proposed.

A series of detailed briefing notes, including some marked "confidential Cabinet document," that outline proposed changes were obtained by the National Post. They say the goal is to create an "offender-focused" justice system and seek "cost-effective alternatives to custody and court processes."

The plan was to "increase the range of offences/offenders who can be diverted by using community-based alternatives to the criminal justice system."

It would keep "more offenders supervised in the community at $25 a day instead of incarcerated in a correctional facility at $162 a day," the documents say.

A key measure of success would be additional "diversion from custody" with an apparent target or quota of an extra 5% to 10% of offenders never reaching jail, the documents say.


The plan also called for the closing of several jails in Toronto, Chatham, Monteith and Thunder Bay, as well as largely shutting down one of the large jails, either Penetanguishene or Lindsay. A plan to build a new jail in Toronto was also to be scrapped.

So was this some blue-sky deal whipped together by a couple of dumb-ass politicians?  Nooo.  Nuh uh.  Check it:

The plans were in an advanced state of progress through both the bureaucratic and government channels when rejected.

At least three people were hired to oversee the changes, including a criminologist, a lawyer and a former federal bureaucrat. "Base funding" for the plan of $5.9-million had already been approved with another $4.5-million "on holdback" pending Cabinet and Treasury Board approvals.

Yeah baby!  Hell, they even had some payback for a Liberal buddy in there.  This was The Plan, pretty much.  Dalton McGuinty seems to be the only guy in Queens Park with a functioning neuron, because he's the one that killed it.

Let's listen in on the meeting where this was presented, shall we?

Michael Bryant:  "So that's our cost cutting plan Dalton.  We release most of the offenders on bail, and keep them out in the community instead of in jail because its cheaper.  Don't have to feed 'em."
Monte Kwinter:  "Huh, uh, yup yup.  Hehe."
Dalton McGuinty:  "So your brain trust's answer to 54 murders in the GTA this year is to let more criminals out faster, and shut a bunch of jails.  Right?"
Michael Bryant and Monte Kwinter:  "Uh, yup."
Dalton McGuinty:  "Sounds good!  How's the focus group data?"
Un-named Liberal Factotum:  "Uhm, sir, the focus group tried to kill and eat the group leader when this was brought up.  Then they ran amok and smashed up all the furniture.  We had to subdue them with tasers, cake and ice cream."
Dalton McGuinty:  "Goddamn voters!  No vision, any of them.  Oh well, tough shit Mikey and Monte, your plan is toast."
Michael Bryant and Monte Kwinter: "Uh, yup ok boss.  Heh heh, yup yup."

h/t Proud to be Canadian

The Phantom