February 2009 Archives

Locked Burnout Paradise Icons

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You can now log in to the Criterion Games Network outside of Burnout Paradise. In the game there's a number of icons to unlock. I have everything in the game, but a bunch of icons were still locked for me. I found them, and here they are. As you can see, they are mostly stuff for the Island, Party Pack, Toy Cars. I think the money bag is for cops and robbers. Then there's a few others. I wonder if "Criterion Games" is only for employees of the company?

And here's the one's I've already unlocked.

The Fool and His Money

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It's been five and a half years since I preordered The Fool and His Money, the sequel to The Fool's Errand, a now-22-year-old puzzle game for the Mac.

I've dared to believe it would be released before, and it never was. However, this time there's an actual teaser available.

It's much like the original, but updated with new puzzles and graphics. I have to say it's probably not worth six years of development time, but it is pretty cool. It includes a card game like in the original, but with new rules. Figuring out the rules is the puzzle, so I won't tell you them, even though I mapped them all out and their scores (or most of them ... I have been unable to identify any Rhadamanthine cards but the one, and two cards appear to do absolutely nothing). (There's also other versions of the puzzle in the game, apparently.)

Here's hoping the game is actually released this year! slashdot.orguse.perl.org

The classic song by Jackie Wilson.

This is the Longest Concert Evar, starring Pudge. Send requests to concertrequest@pudge.net, or post them here.

On January 28, State Rep. Mike Hope sent a letter to Rep. Chris Hurst, chairman of the House Public Safety Committee, to request a hearing for HB 1724, which would increase the penalties for first-time child abuse offenders.

The legislation came out of the actions of the parents of Eryk Woodruff, who was beaten by babysitter Matthew Christiansen.

According to what Hurst told KOMO News, "the bill's timing is off ... the bill was introduced too late in the session to beat the cutoff, and there isn't much he can do."

The legislative session began on January 12th, and the hearing was requested January 28th. The 17th day of a 105-day session is too late to introduce a bill? Granted, they don't introduce new bills through the whole session, and the cutoff for this bill is the end of next week. But Hurst got the request two weeks ago.

And he obviously isn't enthusiastic about the bill, saying "increasing prison time for offenders would cost millions of dollars for the state at a time when lawmakers are looking far and wide for ways to cut costs."

That's nonsense for two obvious reasons. First, if taken to its logical conclusion, we should just not incarcerate anyone. The first and primary function of government is to protect the citizenry in its life, liberty, and property, which means keeping dangerous felons off the street. Saying "there's not enough money to protect people from criminals" is never rational, especially when these are the worst criminals that most need incarceration.

Second, changing the law now won't have any impact on any budget for several years, since it would only apply to new sentences, not existing ones. As the law would increase jail time from 8-to-10 years to 10-to-18 years, even considering parole this will take about five years to have any cost impact.

He could have scheduled a hearing two weeks ago, and his reasons for opposing it on its merits are, well, meritless. Clearly, Hurst isn't being forthcoming. Contact Hurst and let him know that you know. slashdot.org

Blind Cutting

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Danny Westneat's column in the Seattle Times reminds us that there's more to cutting programs than just looking at the name of the program. While the Migratory Waterfowl Art Committee sounds like wasteful spending, it only costs $1,000 a year, which is paid for by the thousands the committee brings in annually.

Of course, one could still argue that this committee is not the proper business of government. But we can't argue it will save money to cut it. We should cut a lot of the state and federal governments, but we shouldn't do it blindly. slashdot.org

Note to NHL on Versus

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Giving a trivia question in the first period and saying you won't answer it until the postgame show, does not make me want to watch the postgame show. It makes me hate you.

On a somewhat related note, I would love to see Milan Lucic throw Claude Lemieux to the ice like Pedro on Zimmer. But Lemieux is probably smarter than Zimmer was on that fateful evening. Maybe Cam Neely could come down from the team's box and do the pummeling himself. slashdot.orguse.perl.org

Lots of people complain about the Republicans' belief, under Bush, in the concept of the Unitary Executive. But what they don't understand is the fact that every President believes in the same concept.

Including President Obama.

The concept is simple: all executive authority belongs to the President. So if the Commerce Secretary has a power, that power comes from the President. This concept is based on the very first words of the Second Article of the Constitution: "The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America."

Obama announced this week that the census director would report to him, not the Commerce Secretary. Republicans cried foul, and said it was a "power grab." But according to the Constitution, since this power is executive power under the Commerce Secretary, Obama already had that power; so he is grabbing nothing.

That said, the census is a power listed under the First Article, and it is the obligation of the President to ensure the data is accurate, and the right of the Congress to have full oversight of the process. The President's power is not unlimited, of course, and the Unitary Executive concept does not imply that it is. slashdot.org

<pudge/*> (pronounced "PudgeGlob") is thousands of posts over many years by Pudge.

"It is the common fate of the indolent to see their rights become a prey to the active. The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime and the punishment of his guilt."

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