On General Welfare

by on Jan.11, 2011, under Uncategorized

James Madison (one of the most Federally Oriented founding fathers) had this to say about the General Welfare clause.

If congress can employ money indefinitely to the general welfare, and are the sole and supreme judges of the general welfare, they may take the care of religion into their own hands, they may appoint teachers in every state, county, and parish and pay them out of their public treasury; they may take into their own hands the education of children, establishing in like manner schools throughout the Union; they may assume the provision of the poor; they may undertake the regulation of all roads other than post roads; in short, everything, from the highest object of state regulation down to the most minute objects of police, would be thrown under the power of Congress….Were the power of Congress to be established in the latitude contended for, it would subvert the very foundations, and transmute the very nature of limited Government established by the people of America. [Letter to Edmund Pendleton, January 21, 1792]

Amazing what he lists as obvious stretches of federal control.

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Furious Paintball and Desert Edge

by on Mar.04, 2010, under Paintball

So while I haven’t talked much about it in a while, things have really been ramping up with my paintball team (DesertEdge).  With recent wins, we’ve had some great exposure, and just picked up a new sponsor, Furious who will be providing our new barrels to match up on our amazing Planet Eclipse Ego’s.  Here’s the press release:


Team Desert Edge Signs Sponsorship Agreement with Furious

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – March 1, 2010 – Team Desert Edge, one of the most recognized and accomplished competitive woodsball teams in the sport, has inked a sponsorship deal with Furious Painball LLC, the maker of the most advanced paintball barrels made.

Tim Saunders, Co-Captain of Team Desert Edge points out, “Every player is looking for the most accurate and consistent barrel available. Desert Edge has found just that. The Lotus Barrel by Furious, is the world’s most advanced barrel design.” Tim continues, “The combination of the Planet Eclipse markers and the new Furious barrels is a perfect mesh of reliability and unmatched precision.”

Desert Edge Team Captain, Dan Saunders adds, “The quality of the new Lotus Barrel is helping our team perform better. The honing and porting are so perfect, our shots are more consistent, air is more efficient, and when a ball breaks, the next shot cleans the barrel perfectly! That keeps our shots right on target.” Dan continues, “In competitive woods paintball, the importance of accurate shots and a self-cleaning barrel is crucial. It’s a benefit almost unheard of, that we now have.”

“This partnership is the perfect fit.” Dan says. “Furious is a relatively small, but growing operation, and we couldn’t be more excited to be a part of the growth of such a great company. We look forward to exposing other players to such quality and reliable equipment.”

Dan continues, “We are honored to join the Furious family with winning teams like Vicious, San Francisco Explicit and Rockstar. We look forward to continuing the winning habits in the woodsball tournament scene.”

“Matthew, at Furious is excited to work with Desert Edge, and is genuinely interested in Paintball as a whole.” Says Dan. “Matthew is currently working with the UWL (Ultimate Woodsball League) in organizing a tournament series in Malaysia. Dan adds, “Matthew has strong ties with the paintball community, both in the U.S. and Malaysia. This may be our chance to reach the Paintball community on a more global level.”

Furious Paintball’s Matthew Nekvapil comments, “Furious Paintball sees an opportunity in the Scenario market. We have always wanted to get in there and work with a great scenario team, which we have found with Team Desert Edge.”

Matthew continues, “We are excited about the fact that they are enthusiastic to work with us. They have been around for some time, their results speak for themselves. At Furious, we pride ourselves on our customer service. The teams we work with is a testament to this. We feel that Desert Edge is the right fit with Furious.”

Furious Paintball specializes in custom and precision manufacturing of paintball equipment. They are most recognized by their beautifully handcrafted barrels and their ultra long lasting paintball batteries. The founder, an enthusiastic paintball player demands only the best and most reliable equipment and as a result of that, Furious Paintball came into being.

The partnership of Desert Edge and Furious Paintball will surly bring one of the most exciting seasons we have seen in competitive woodsball.

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Upgrading the Media Server

by on Apr.26, 2009, under Geeky

This weekend I took the time to upgrade my home server to Ubuntu’s Jaunty release, I’m happy to say things went really well overall.  The only problem I had was related to the way I share my media with the Mac devices in my house.  While samba works ok for a lot of stuff, and NFS can be nice (but a PITA to set up right), Macs really like using AFP to share with each other.

This is really noticable when you want to use your server to handle the time machine backups.  To get things working before I use the instructions here (http://www.kremalicious.com/2008/06/ubuntu-as-mac-file-server-and-time-machine-volume/) to get things working.  This worked great, and even better when you remember to read everything and actually compile the netatalk yourself, instead of using the prepackaged one.  Why? because you do want the cracklib/ssl support, so you can use encrypted passwords.  Ubuntu/Debian won’t include that.

Rebuilding this time, I had two extra problems, and it looks like now they have a note on that page mentioning the first.  I couldnt’ ever get a connection to work after the upgrade, with no useful information in the logs.  Just that my session started, and ended.  It turns out in each share there was a .AppleDB directory, that had to be wiped, and rebuilt (by simply restarting the service) before they would accept connections.

The second problem I had was that even though I’d installed cracklib2, in jaunty the deps hadn’t included the PAM module for it. So I could build against cracklib, but couldn’t have it talk to pam.  One quick apt-get and I was running again.

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Focusing on the Job

by on Mar.11, 2009, under Politics

Ok, this has been a long time coming.  People have heard me say something along these lines on irc, IM, in person, etc.  But now I’m putting it up on the tubes.


  • An elected official is chosen to fill a specific role
  • While elected, they are an employee of the people they represent
  • Campaigning for an elected position is a demanding job in itself
  • By accepting an elected position, you will give an oath to your constituents to fulfill that job

It shall be illegal for an official, currently serving in an elected position, to campaign for an alternate elected position.  To legally campaign for any elected position, you may not be a public official in any standing except for the same position you are campaigning for (re-election). (continue reading…)

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Why I Prep

by on Nov.18, 2008, under Home

This is a response to Ekim’s question of Why We Prep over on UtahPreppers.com.

Why am I what my in-laws call “A fanatic”?  Actually, I see it as the more normal station in life.  I grew up in a family of humble means.  My mom brought with her a family legacy from pioneer times, and depression era struggle.  She had grown up in a family that knew how hard life in a depression was.  My dad was the consummate woodsman, nothing could keep him out of the wilderness, or from figuring out how to do anything himself.  With this combination, my siblings and I were brought up “the old fashioned” way.  We had clothes that our mom had made, we ate food that was part of the rotation of our storage, we fixed things that broke, we grew and raised quite a bit of our food.

I meet people nowadays that can only see these activities as quaint, something not done anymore.  And can you fault them? Who really does that at all?  My family is far from fully realizing all of the things my parents managed to have us do.  Why would we after all, I make a much higher salary than my parents did, we have a world of products at hand that were barely dreamed of just those few years ago.

And yet for the last several years I’ve felt the need to somehow bring my life back into line with many of the values my parents gave me by their example.  And never has that need been so apparent as it has in the last couple of years.

Food storage has been a prime example of what I’ve needed in my life.  Several times my wife and I have striven to hold some food reserves in our home for whatever the need may be.  Several times we’ve had to rely on that food, which always seemed to be just enough to get us through whatever tight spot we were in.  Layoffs to “tough times” seemed to always happen, bringing our reserves back to nil, but thankfully keeping us from getting into any serious trouble.  Looking forward, with the tough economy, it’s nice to know that I have some food planned out that will sustain my family in any times of need, as well as enough to provide a buffer around food inflation, given a 16.3% annualized inlation cost this year alone (and a one-month amount that hit 72% on some items.  Layoffs are my worst experience in needing to use this reserve, but what about any kind of disaster situation?  I have family members that comment that nobody in the USA will *ever* need any kind of long term food reserve, that it’s unecessary in our world today.  Yet people like this cannot see the disasters that have happened for the warnings they were.  My faith has long taught of the importance in a food reserve, and I fully believe in the divinity of that council.

But simply having some cans of food is not all that is necessary.  Knowledge is the most important thing.  With food, what good is a sack of wheat without knowing all of the options it provides for feeding your family?  You must be aware *ahead* of time how to use any food, tools, gadgets or whatever you have put in place.

I am glad that I am at least familiar with the things I think my family might need in the worst of cases, to the best.  From some sci-fi end of the world situation, to just being strapped for cash because of a medical emergency.  And while I take comfort in what I know, I am smart enough to realize that I have only started, and there is a world of information that I must learn to apply.  As my parents taught me, I must teach my kids, by given them a lifestyle that is sustainable, and teachable.  At worst, my kids become adults that are well rounded individuals.  At truly worst, they are alive, and able to take care of themselves.

Sure, I’m odd, but people think that about me even if they don’t know I’m a “Prepper” (not, not a preppie 🙂 ).  Yes, I can be as fanatical about a bullet caliber as I can about a programming language.  I may discuss gardening tips vs SQL tips.  I like to be who I am, and I try to have that person be ready for *whatever* may come.

Hope for the best, Prepare for the worst.

Oh, and check out Utah Preppers for upcoming information on how you to can begin to get ready for anything.

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RIP Phoenix

by on Nov.10, 2008, under Geeky

It lasted far beyond when expected, but it’s finally kicked the bucket.  RIP Phoenix Lander you taught us much.

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seq on osx

by on Nov.04, 2008, under Geeky

I was trying to mirror down a set of zip’s (CD3WD a pretty amazing resource) and I didnt’ want to just mirror, because of other data.  So I was trying to do a simple loop, but was thinking too Perlish and trying to sprintf somehow the numerical formatting (files are cd3wd401 to 444, so needed the 0).  Perlhoser corrected my attempt, by pointing me to the seq command, with the -w flag, which pads the width to the largest amount, with leading zeros, perfect.

Until I tried to run it on my mac, which had the drive I wanted it on, instead of a linux box.  Seq wasn’t installed, and I couldnt’ find it with macports.  However I did find via google that the ‘coreutils’ port has a ‘gseq’ tool. Drop in replacement for my script.

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Finished Spider

by on Nov.02, 2008, under Home

A shot of how I finished up the spider for halloween:

I wound up spending my time up on the roof, basically inside the spider.  I could control the legs and have the spider shake, or lurch out at people (though not far, enough to freak people out).

Next year I hope to have more time to build it better.  Actually delivering the candy through one of the pipe legs would work well, having a speaker/megaphone or something would be nice, as I got rather hoarse by the end of the night from “hissing”.

The webs really added to the effect, I had a nice spolight on it, with a red bulb in the ‘mouth’ of the spider.

Several kids, and even a few parent refused to even approach the house.

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Setting up Halloween

by on Oct.31, 2008, under Home

So last night, I wanted to do something to add to the Halloween spirit.  See our neighborhood goes all out.  Everybody has picked some theme/location from the Harry Potter series, and has gone all out in the decoration.  Maybe I’ll get some pictures of it for later, but understand that it’s good enough to get featured in the local papers and TV.  So I quickly had to start my bit, here’s a sneak preview.

Right now I’m figuring out how to make the back legs stand up more, so it appears to be walking more, and improving the fangs.  I have a light that goes into the back and makes it glow some, and am putting a floodlight on the front, so the face shows up, and the eyes glow a bit.

I’ll be adding the spiderwebs in today, and a ‘body’ wrapped up in spiderwebs.  The best parts though.  A) I’ll be in the spiderweb, ready to freak people out.  But also, that long front leg, I have fishing line on it, so I can make it reach out and grab kids as they go for the candy 🙂

It’s not a good Halloween unless you can make a kid soil their costume 🙂

The only really bad part is, my wife is refusing to walk in the front door now.

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G.O. Phizzickle

by on Oct.29, 2008, under Uncategorized

Growing up my family had a huge number of books at hand to read.  The ones that really got me started in reading first though were the cartoon books of course.  No, we didn’t have “comic books” so much as all the old softbounds of daily comics.  Naturally I started with some of the easier to read ones, but as I got better I started reading some of the more ‘wordy’ ones, where characters would exercise their verbosity to extreme degrees.

One of the ones that constantly grabbed my attention was this POGO volume.  Now anybody familiar with the Pogo world knows that it is far from an easy read.  With his use of deep accents, he presented a very interesting take on the larger world, by casting it all in their little swamp.

Well, I’ve been browsing around trying to find some of this old content, and stumbled upon one book online, and right away, it seemed to play right into today’s hot topics.

G.O. Phizzickle Discussion

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