Gongol.com Archives: July 2006
Brian Gongol

July 26, 2006

Threats and Hazards Taliban offering three times pay of Afghan army
Cash can buy out a lot of loyalties

Threats and Hazards 60 "volunteers" from Iran want to join the fight in Lebanon
Iran's foreign minister is pushing strong propaganda, saying: "So long as the unilateral US support for Israel continues the Middle East is doomed to burn in fire". Secretary of State Rice is warning Iran and Syria to cool their jets. Talks aiming at a peace agreement didn't get very far.

The American Way Millionaire plans to fight back against MPAA abuses
The movie industry is on a rampage to bust people for copyright infringement, but when they go up against a millionaire who says he didn't do it and who isn't afraid to spend tens of thousands to fight back, the results should be entertainment

The United States of America On reading books and showing them off
Note to Chris Matthews: Don't ever call non-East Coasters "the hinterlands" again

Broadcasting House, Senate don't agree on whether to fund public broadcasting
It's always dangerous for government to fund anything on the basis of tastes and preferences

Computers and the Internet Thoughts on the security problems with municipal WiFi
In a lot of ways, access to broadband Internet access is a public utility like streetlights and sewers. But at the same time, it's distinctly different: Just because you have your refrigerator plugged into the municipal power grid doesn't give a burglar access to what's inside the fridge...but opening up thousands of users to the same wireless network can create security holes big enough to drive a truck through.

Computers and the Internet Symantec warns of a widespread e-mail Trojan horse
Like lots of spam, it falsely purports to come from legitimate sources. When the victim opens the file attachment, the Trojan unloads keystroke loggers and other nasty malware. It's another case of the use of social engineering to get people to let the crooks right in.

Water News Don't wait for heavy rains to ensure sump pump reliability

Graphics Nuclear Ambitions

Business and Finance Disney to lay off 650 employees

News Competition serves education well in Britain
Milton Friedman has long advocated the advantages of school choice, which appears to be best-served by a voucher program. It reflects the age-old division between public funding of services and public delivery of those services. A corollary: A voucher program would need to be specifically designated for use at truly institutional schools, not home-schooling; it would be a real failure if parents could claim that they were home-schooling their kids solely to cash the vouchers for themselves -- punishing the kids.

Business and Finance Home prices flat and sales down 9% from last year
Mortgage payments for those on ARMs are going up as rates rise, and spending on home-equity loans is destined to slow

Weather and Disasters European heat wave already killing people
40 in France alone. Meanwhile, high temperatures of 111 in Los Angeles are also killing people, and 129,000 people still don't have power in the St. Louis area. Temperatures in DC have been so high, they've slowed down the Metro trains.

Business and Finance Amazon.com reports sales up 22% but net income way down

Threats and Hazards UN accuses Israel of deliberately targeting peacekeepers
Iran, in turn, is threatening trouble if it's not involved in peace talks