Winds of Change.NET: Liberty. Discovery. Humanity. Victory.

Formal Affiliations
  • Anti-Idiotarian Manifesto
  • Euston Democratic Progressive Manifesto
  • Real Democracy for Iran!
  • Support Denamrk
  • Million Voices for Darfur
  • milblogs
 Subscribe in a reader

'AMac' Archives

November 4, 2008

First Tuesday of November

By 'AMac' at 13:43

200 of us were already lined up by the time the polling place doors opened at 7 a.m. The queue moved quickly. At the sign-in table, the election judge found my name on her screen and handed me a smartcard.

"Do you want to see my I.D.?"

Frown. "We were told not to ask for identification."

"How do you know if am who I say I am?"

She looks up. "Please sign this slip. Bring it and the card to the official by the booths."

I print the letter "A" followed by a straight horizontal line. "This isn't a real signature."

A sigh. "I could go on for hours about the procedures we've been instructed to use this year, but there isn't time, you know..."

On to the booth. I inserted the smartcard into the hack-prone, no-audit-trail Diebold machine. Part of the matched set that our county bought at such expense a few years ago, and that will proceed to its well-deserved place on the scrapheap after today. Made my choices and touched "Cast Your Ballot."

I was back outside by 7:30; there were 150 more voters waiting to take their turns. Maryland will see a heavy turnout, because of--or despite--its deep Blue color.

Your story?

| Direct Link | 24 Comments | | Printer-Friendly
  • SG: Not counting someones legitimate vote is as bad as counting read more
  • David Britt: People get all in a tiff over not having to read more
  • Tim Oren: No lines for me, I voted by mail a couple read more

October 22, 2008

Prof. William Ayers, Ph.D., Model Scholar

By 'AMac' at 14:33
This letter in yesterday's Wall Street Journal caught my eye:
We, the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) College of Education Alumni Board, write to champion our colleague Prof. William Ayers.

Mr. Ayers is a Distinguished Professor of Education and Senior University Scholar at the University of Illinois at Chicago, a nationally known scholar and Vice President-elect of the American Educational Research Association. Throughout his 20 years at UIC, Mr. Ayers has taught, advised, mentored and supported hundreds of undergraduate, masters and Ph.D. students. Helping educators develop the capacity and ethical commitment to promote critical inquiry, dialogue, and debate; to encourage questioning and independent thinking; and to value the full humanity of every person and to work for access and equity are Prof. Ayers's essential commitments.

We reject the recent and ongoing derogations of his character, and stand beside Prof. Ayers, an advocate for education devoted to human enlightenment and liberation. That goal is also ours.

Patrick O'Reilly
Vice President
The UIC College of Education Alumni Board, Chicago

| Direct Link | 136 Comments | | Printer-Friendly

read the rest! »

  • AMac: Chris, NM, just to clarify, the issue is not the read more
  • Nortius Maximus: Chris: Yes, we've covered this. You think AMac is being read more
  • Chris: Yes, a 300-word limit in-thread is an imposition. If you read more

July 28, 2007

Scott Thomas Beauchamp, Diarist: Now a Second Voice from Baghdad is Heard

By 'AMac' at 05:58

With controversy swirling around the veracity of The New Republic's "Baghdad Diarist" accounts, it's hard to know very much for certain. But this can be said:

If the accounts of embedded journalist/bloggers like Michael Yon, Michael Totten, and Bill Roggio are to be believed and taken as representative, Coalition forces are taking on difficult, dangerous, and stressful tasks. While they screw up, sometimes badly, the moral core of the great majority of soldiers is holding up.

I even got this sense from the interviews by fervently "anti-Occupation" journalists Chris Hedges and Laila al-Arian in The Nation. (The names Hedges and al-Arian will both be quite familiar to many readers. For a scathing review of their article, see Greyhawk at Mudville Gazette.)

In his dispatches from Baghdad, Pvt. Scott Thomas Beauchamp has painted an entirely different picture. He portrays the unit he serves with as having lost its moral compass. If this is true, it should matter a great deal to those of us at home. If it is a misrepresentation that speaks only to Beauchamp's psychological issues, political stance, or literary ambitions: we should know that, too.

The extended entry reprints an email from a sergeant in Beauchamp's unit.
[UPDATE 8:30 pm on Jul 29, 2007 -- I cut the text of the email, at the request of its recipient--AMac]

| Direct Link | 45 Comments | | Printer-Friendly

read the rest! »

  • Nortius Maximus: Dreadfully peripheral to the topic: Thus the temptation to "game read more
  • wufnik: AMac-- My point above was that few people enjoy being read more
  • AMac: wufnik -- My point above was that few people enjoy read more

April 24, 2007

Jon Evans on Building Iraq's Internet

By 'AMac' at 14:31

Winds has featured many first-person accounts of post-invasion Iraq. While anecdotal, the picture they paint are useful in appreciating conditions on the ground. Besides Michael Totten's dispatches, Callimachus has presented "Kat's" two part account of operations at a Baghdad-based Western firm working on reconstruction projects. We've recommended this 2/06 IEEE Spectrum article on the Iraqi electrical grid.

Adventure writer Jon Evans has posted Blood, Bullets, Bombs, and Bandwidth on his website. Best I can tell, this is an expanded and updated account that he originally wrote for Wired. The linked version seems to date from mid-2005.

| Direct Link | 13 Comments | | Printer-Friendly

read the rest! »

  • chew2: AMac, Regarding Iranian evildoing. "I think Iranian elements are facilitating read more
  • AMac: Thanks chew2. As you no doubt recognize, we each made read more
  • chew2: Amac, Re: the Steyrs. The Daily Mail article is unsourced. read more

January 17, 2007

Dog-whistle politics

By 'AMac' at 14:51

Here's a neologism that's likely to gain a lot of traction between now and 2008.

Dog-whistle politics noun
Expressing political ideas in such a way that only a specific group of voters properly understand what is being said, especially in order to conceal a controversial message.


During the UK election campaigns in spring of 2005, a new phrase entered the Westminster lexicon: dog-whistle politics. A dog-whistle is used to create a special high-pitched sound which only attracts the attention of a particular dog rather than all the dogs around. The analogy then is to put across a political message in such a way that it will only be understood by potential supporters rather than voters in general...

--The Macmillan English Dictionary, 'Word of the Week' archive

Hat tip: Blog hooligan 'Alan,' at the 'Liestoppers' Board (Jan 16 2007, 08:58 PM).

| Direct Link | 18 Comments | | Printer-Friendly
  • PD Shaw: This doesn't seem that odd to me. Overturning Roe v. read more
  • Glen Wishard: Andrew:Judicial activism, 1850s style, would have been acting in favor read more
  • David Blue: #14 from mark: "To be honest, I couldn't exactly tell read more

January 15, 2007

The Duke Lacrosse Rape Hoax: A Pro-Due-Process Faculty Member Speaks (Sort of)

By 'AMac' at 15:47

The Duke Lacrosse Rape Case is in the midst of a turnaround in media-sponsored public perception. At first roundly vilified for their brutal gang rape of a black dancer, the three indicted Duke University lacrosse players are now being viewed as underdogs suffering from ill-treatment at the hands of a rogue District Attorney. Last Night's 60 Minutes segment emphasized this point.

When the scandal broke in March and April 2006, there was no shortage of Duke faculty willing to take a stand. Well over eighty-eight of them contributed to an atmosphere of outrage, as if to seek a pre-trial conviction in the court of public opinion. One of the dogs that hasn't barked has been the voices of professors cautioning against a rush to judgement. Until the case was turned on its head by December 15th's bombshell admission of the head of a DNA testing lab that he conspired with the D.A. to hide exculpatory evidence, only five of Duke's faculty had come out publically in support of the Due Process Rights of the accused ( Coleman Baldwin Kimel Gustafson Munger ). And only a subset of the five had ventured so far as to proclaim that the felony charges lodged against the lacrosse team were in all likelihood concocted by a false accuser in league with a corrupt prosecuter.

Does the imbalance of public pronouncements in favor of a politically-correct fairy tale reflect the numerical dominance of the Hard Left on campus? Is it a consequence of the implied threat of dogmatists at the levers of power to the social standing or career prospects of open-minded academicians? Or do the pressing professional demands of most of the professoriate mitigate against them taking the time to state in public what they privately believe? Given the importance of Bad Philosophy to the future of our society, it's a question worth asking.

In the Extended Entry, I present the anonymous opinion of one Duke faculty member from the Reasonable Center.

| Direct Link | 17 Comments | | Printer-Friendly

read the rest! »

  • Barry Porter: {Advertisement deleted, since it violates our comment guidelines. --NM} read more
  • Gary Packwood: The Duke Lacrosse Rape Hoax: A Pro-Due-Process Faculty Member Speaks read more
  • M. Simon: AMAC, Enjoying your posts at DiW. What has happened here read more

The Duke Lacrosse Rape Hoax: Witnessing a Media Train Wreck

By 'AMac' at 11:08

2006 is turning out to be another anillus horribilis for many of the companies that publish major American Newspapers. The multi-year stock chart for The New York Times Company ( NYT ) tells part of the tale. In some measure, this unhappy story is a consequence of trust withheld by increasingly skeptical subscribers. Many Winds readers are familiar with one recent episode, Reutersgate. A smaller domestic scandal may be--in one sense--in its final week: The Duke Lacrosse Rape Case. It offers lessons in the vulnerability of individuals to abuses of authority, and in the reluctance of some members of The Fourth Estate to let go of a story line they've become attached to--facts be damned.

| Direct Link | 12 Comments | | Printer-Friendly

read the rest! »

  • Law Essays: Law papers can be tricky to begin with, as they read more
  • AMac: M. Simon #10, You raise the same points as Gib, read more
  • M. Simon: I like the idea of keeping the names of accused read more

August 31, 2006

"Path to 9/11": A TV Docudrama worth watching?

By 'AMac' at 14:45

ABC sent L.A.-based critic Justin Levine a preview DVD of "Path to 9/11," a made-for-TV movie that the network will be broadcasting next week. Levine's very favorable review is at Patterico's Pontifications.

According to ABC (the US network, not the Aussie one), the first part of this 5-hour mini-series will be shown Sunday, September 10 at 8pm/7pm Central. The conclusion will be the following night in the same time slot.

| Direct Link | 8 Comments | 2 TrackBacks | | Printer-Friendly

read the rest! »

  • Mark C: There needs to be a "docudrama" made about Bush helping read more
  • anonymous: Libs: How is it that the Bush administration is solely read more
  • Mike: I love it Liberals all over are whining about this read more

July 17, 2006

"The stakes have been raised beyond anyone's expectation"

By 'AMac' at 14:20

With the Israel-Hezbollah War well into its sixth day, most of us have figured out which mass media outlets provide breathlessly unenlightening commentary, and which prefer to channel Rodney King with return-to-the-peaceful-status-quo-ante editorial material. With such realistically low expectations in mind, it was thus of interest to read columnist Amir Taheri in Asharq al-Awsat. This London-based newspaper's Arabic and English websites are widely read by elites throughout the Arab world. It's useful to know that a succinct, pro-Western analyis is on offer at this Saudi-royal-family owned source in English, though perhaps not as an Arabic translation.

| Direct Link | 7 Comments | | Printer-Friendly

read the rest! »

  • AMac: Zed Zed (#6): > I don't trust you. No problem. read more
  • Zed Zed: Quote: Since you aren't to be trusted, I expect a read more
  • AMac: Zed Zed (#4), As mentioned on another thread, I'm aware read more

The source of Hezbollah's rockets

By 'AMac' at 14:20

London-based, Saudi-owned newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat reporter Ali Nouri Zadeh reports an excusive: Iran is the supplier of Hezbollah's weaponry! The unnammed Revolutionary Guards officer added that

more than 3,000 Hezbollah members have undergone training in Iran, which included guerilla warfare, firing missiles and artillery, operating unmanned drones, marine warfare and conventional war operations. He said they have also trained 50 pilots for the past two years.

It's good to see confirmation of basic facts from an unexpected angle--even those facts that few reasonable people thought were in dispute.

| Direct Link | 1 Comment | | Printer-Friendly
  • AMac: At The Counterterrorism Blog, Oliver Guitta summarizes a paragraph from read more

April 28, 2006

A Denial-of-Service Attack on Some Websites

By 'AMac' at 16:49

At this writing (1605 GMT 28 April 2006), a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack on Hosting Matter's servers appears to have been going on for a couple of hours (hat tip Charles Johnson ). Access to a number of high-traffic websites is being affected.

UPDATE 1810 GMT 28 April 2006: Stacy of Hosting Matters reports that the attack has been thwarted. The affected blogs all seem to be back.

| Direct Link | 14 Comments | | Printer-Friendly
  • AMac: NahnCee #13: Good questions all, and I don't have any read more
  • NahnCee: Other than the one mention of Saudi Arabia as being read more
  • C.S. Scott: We've been down all day long and continue to have read more

April 23, 2006

A Small But Telling Misrepresentation of Iran's Atomic Program

By 'AMac' at 05:07

Last week saw some spirited debate on Winds about the Iranian mullahs' progress towards fielding atomic weaponry. Many of the what-should-the-West-do dilemmas would qualify as Wicked Problems. There are awful and unknowable costs to each possible alternative--doing nothing, focusing on negotiations, bombing, invading. Worse, the deeper problem--the increasing ease with which aggressive, repressive, murderous regimes can acquire nuclear bombs--is refractory to all of these approaches.

That said, perhaps it's odd to make a single mistake by The Baltimore Sun, a single newspaper, into a case study--but I don't think so. With Global Security or Arms Control Wonk a click away, it's easy to forget that most Americans get their news from their newspaper and the TV. Can good decisions come out of policy discussions and elections when simple facts are misstated and allowed to pass into the record, uncorrected?

| Direct Link | 4 Comments | 1 TrackBack | | Printer-Friendly

read the rest! »

  • Greg Johns: Interesting article. read more
  • FormerDem: Calling the Sun a second-tier paper is, I suppose, accurate, read more
  • David Foster: I've linked this at Photon Courier, with some additional thoughts: read more
Recent Comments
  • TM Lutas: Jobs' formula was simple enough. Passionately care about your users, read more
  • Just seeing the green community in action makes me confident read more
  • Glen Wishard: Jobs was on the losing end of competition many times, read more
  • Chris M: Thanks for the great post, Joe ... linked it on read more
  • Joe Katzman: Collect them all! Though the French would be upset about read more
  • Glen Wishard: Now all the Saudis need is a division's worth of read more
  • mark buehner: Its one thing to accept the Iranians as an ally read more
  • J Aguilar: Saudis were around here (Spain) a year ago trying the read more
  • Fred: Good point, brutality didn't work terribly well for the Russians read more
  • mark buehner: Certainly plausible but there are plenty of examples of that read more
  • Fred: They have no need to project power but have the read more
  • mark buehner: Good stuff here. The only caveat is that a nuclear read more
  • Ian C.: OK... Here's the problem. Perceived relevance. When it was 'Weapons read more
  • Marcus Vitruvius: Chris, If there were some way to do all these read more
  • Chris M: Marcus Vitruvius, I'm surprised by your comments. You're quite right, read more
The Winds Crew
Town Founder: Left-Hand Man: Other Winds Marshals
  • 'AMac', aka. Marshal Festus (AMac@...)
  • Robin "Straight Shooter" Burk
  • 'Cicero', aka. The Quiet Man (cicero@...)
  • David Blue (
  • 'Lewy14', aka. Marshal Leroy (lewy14@...)
  • 'Nortius Maximus', aka. Big Tuna (nortius.maximus@...)
Other Regulars Semi-Active: Posting Affiliates Emeritus:
Winds Blogroll
Author Archives
Powered by Movable Type 4.23-en