קסם וחסר מזה

Enchantment and lack thereof

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Location: Columbus, Ohio, United States

Thursday, September 30, 2004

Blackwell - Fucking Asshole

Yesterday was a disgusting day for the state of Ohio. Yesterday Ohio Secretary of State, J. Kenneth Blackwell ordered Ralph Nader off the Ohio ballot. This was a foolish and ridiculous move by Blackwell, a Republican who plans to run for Ohio Governor in 2006. By denying Nader a place in politics, Blackwell is both circumventing the democracy that our country was founded upon and shooting himself in the foot. But he isn't stopping there! This week he has also unilaterally limited voter registration in Ohio, making him the number one asshole in the state. I’ll get to that later.

Our country was designed as a democracy where all citizens would have fair representation in government. As the framers intended it, our representative government would consist of anyone popularly voted to represent a majority of citizens. This is true from the President all the way down to city councils. However, Mr. Blackwell as well as several shithead Democrats have gone against our equal-opportunity election system, taking arms against Mr. Nader.

Not only is Nader not given a chance to debate tonight, he is tangled in litigation in most states in which he is trying to run. Democrats across the country have sued Nader for election fraud. They claim he is using illegal means to collect ballot-access signatures.

A good friend of mine and Nader supporter, John Broz, was one of the grassroots signature-collectors for Nader. I observed him and his colleagues carefully collect signatures and register voters. Broz and his counterparts were of honest intentions and worked for Nader pro-bono. Absolutely no laws or election restrictions were violated on my watch. John is now being sued by the Democratic Party.

The Democrats, having "carefully reviewed" all 14,000 submitted signatures have had all but 3,708 thrown out based on their own unsubstantiated claims. These claims have no merit and are categorically false. The Democrats and Blackwell know this and just hope nobody catches on until after the election. I signed for Nader, my signature better be counted. These almost 4,000 signatures are still considerably below the 5,000 necessary to be on Ohio's Presidential ballot. Therefore, the Democrats have Nader locked out of the election by overpowering him with their legal muscle and millions of corporate dollars.

The Democrats are making nothing but mistakes! They are wasting their time on Nader, as he is not going to beat them in the election; a certain President Bush is! The Democrats are being anything but democratic by preventing Nader from running for president. Regardless of his chances, the man has worked hard to be on the ballot, and he has followed the rules, let him run! I have a message for the Democrats of Ohio: Nader is not a threat to Kerry, he will not beat Kerry. George Bush is a threat to Kerry, and at the rate the Democrats are fucking up, he will beat Kerry. If the Democrats had put all the time, money, and effort into a successful campaign strategy instead of this Nader hunt, they might be able to beat Bush, but I fear it’s too late now. I am getting off topic though, on to Blackwell.

Mr. Blackwell doesn’t stop there; he sent a notice to all Ohio election boards to disregard certain election registration forms. Blackwell claims that forms printed on paper thinner than a postcard might be damaged by mail machines. His instructions were to throw away any voter registration cards that did not meet the thickness requirements. Talk about undemocratic! This man is disenfranchising thousands of new voters because of the thickness of a piece of paper. How would you feel if you went to the polls to find that you lost the right to vote because the paper you signed up on wasn’t thick enough? I wonder what Mr. Blackwell is thinking!

So on one hand Mr. Blackwell is helping the Democrats’ chances of winning the election by removing Nader from Ohio’s ballot. On the other, he is helping Republicans the same way Jeb Bush helped his brother. By cutting out thousands of new (mostly liberal) voters. The idiot Blackwell is helping out ol’ GWB too. So whose side is he on? No one’s!

Blackwell is kicking himself in the balls. He is helping and hurting both sides simultaneously. This is not a way to make friends. So where do we stand? Nader, a man who (unlike Blackwell) is truly for the people, is eliminated from competition in Ohio. Nader’s name will be removed from all ballots in Ohio. Acording to the Columbus Dispatch, all absentee voters will be notified that a vote for Nader will not be counted (very democratic). And thousands of voters may be turned away on Nov. 2 as Blackwell has done his best to manipulate the voting system.

I urge everyone to write Blackwell a nasty letter as I intend to do. Tell him what democracy means to you, and give him hell for his dirty tricks. Whatever you do, don’t vote for him in two years! His contact information is below:

J. Kenneth Blackwell
Ohio Secretary of State
180 E. Broad St. 16th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Electrical and Computer Engineering Design Experience I

My EE 395A class, called Electrical and Computer Engineering Design Experience I is not as bad as it sounds. The entire class is centered around one microchip: the PIC 16F877 Microcontroller Unit (MCU). Sounds boring? It's not. This one chip, which is the size of a stick of gum, is so versatile that it can be used to command anything from a microwave oven to a traffic light to your alarm clock. During this quarter I am going to learn everything there is to know about this little chip. It may sound dumb to you, but I like it.

The professor of this class, Dr. Maarten Uijt de Haag, Ph.D, may sound like a square, but he is not. This Netherlander is not your average foreign prof. He highlights his classes by using colloquialisms like, "dude" "man" and "shitload". He is a really cool guy and he really seems to care about his students, as well as interact with them as friends.

I wonder if he is so cool because he comes from Europe. The Netherlands to be specific. Crystal wants me to see if he smokes weed. I am assuming he has been to Amsterdam. Whether he lights up or not, I want to go to Europe. Unlike most of my high school class, I have never been. I plan to leave soon after I graduate, and I hope to stay at least a month. All are invited to come with me and flee the oppressive dictatorship of Uncle Sam, even if only for a short time.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Anarchy and Ambivalence

Protesters at the Republican National Convention in New York, though they received limited media attention, were universally labeled as "anarchists". I hang out with a lot of liberals and I don't know any who would call themselves anarchists. There are times when I, myself reason that an anarchist system would be an improvement over the tragic way American government is going; but I quickly dismiss this notion, an organized government is essential for society.

I bring up the so-called "anarchists" to make the following points:

Who decided to label the protesters anarchists?

Is it possible that a large number of protesters wrote major news outlets declaring that "the anarchists are coming to town"? Possible, but it didn't happen.

Did a majority of the protesters have signs that said things like, "We are anarchists! We respect no authority!" or "To hell with government! I want to live in a cave!"? I think not. Though a menagerie of issues were protested during the RNC, I safely speculate that anarchy was not a serious topic among most.

Why did they do it?

I suggest that the protesters were labeled "anarchists" for three reasons.

1. The protesters came to New York for dozens of reasons. Many came to protest the war. Others chose to protest the government propaganda network also known as Fox News. Yet others protested things like job outsourcing and corporate greed. These protesters lacked a clear message, they all came for different reasons, their voices blurred together into an incomprehensible noise. Far too much was being protested to be easily digested in an Action McNews power lunch. Therefore, it is because of the lack of a clear, united voice, that the protesters were tagged with the term "anarchists".

2. The Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary defines an anarchist as one who rebels against any authority, established order, or ruling power. Calling the protesters "anarchists" is an easy way to take away from their messages. The average TV news glutton will hear of anarchists causing a ruckus in New York and think:

"Anarchists? What's the point? They don't believe in anything. They are just wasting their time. I shouldn't care about what they have to say."

This is the very reason that they are called "anarchists". Not because they believe in nothing, but because the media wants them to be disregarded. Many of the things these brave, radical protesters are so opinionated about would not look good on television. Wal-Mart would not be happy if a network that shows their commercials also shows protesters denouncing their filthy business techniques. Fox News is not about to air protesters outside their New York studio chanting "Shut the Fox up!"

Most Importantly
3. Most of these demonstrators had a real beef with the Bush Administration. If the press exposes any shred of doubt regarding the President's integrity, intelligence, or policy there will be grave consequences. People might start to question Bush's rock-solid stance on bombing-the-hell-out-of-places-we've-never-heard-of-for-no-reason. People could stop supporting a stupid war that is doing nothing for America. People might even turn "anarchist" themselves, GASP! Acknowledging these protesters could jeopardize national security! The demonstrators must be derided and devalued lest someone begins to doubt our commander and chief.

The protesters were labeled as anarchists to cover Bush's oily Texan ass.

Senator Kerry, who kinda opposes the Republicans (I guess), doesn't wish to be associated with the protesters as they might detract from his wholesome image. Why couldn't the media outlets label these protesters as "democrats"? They are certainly in New York because they oppose the Bush administration and everything they stand for. So why can't they just be tagged as the "polar opposite" of republicans, democrats?

It's comforting to hear that the people have such a powerful voice in the way our country works. Citizens who bring up their discontent with the government are brushed aside, called names, and forgotten about. What will it take for the powers that be (and stay) to listen to popular opinion?

How many "anarchists" does it take to screw in a lightbulb? How many "anarchists" does it take to turn our country around?

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

An Exercise In Ballsiness

I have recently been sanctioned by my roommates to no longer smoke marijuana in or about our apartment. Apparently my packy wacky friends and I are putting the entire apartment in jeopardy. My roommates unanimously agree that there is a serious danger associated with smoking marijuana on Ambling Managment's property. I am told that there is always a chance that we could get caught, and that could mean eviction for me and my roommates. I obviously have to comply with my roommates wishes, but I don't have to like it!

In the past, a favorite spot for us has been the balcony of my apartment. This airy, secluded location is 3 floors from the ground and has plenty of room for friends. There is absolutely no way to access it unless you have a key to the apartment. Furthermore, there is not another balcony around for about 50 feet, excluding the ones above and beneath. The hilltop view offers a spectacular vantage point from which you could see anyone coming for a mile.

In order to be caught, the following events have to happen:

1. A passerby, possibly a police officer, disgruntled resident, or Ambling Management employee, notices (3 floors up) that some rabble-rousers are smoking illegal narcotics.
- Police never come up here, Ambling Management employees are not on the remises after 9 pm.

2. They give a shit.
- I have smoked with the neighbors before.

3. The proper authorities are notified and they too give a shit.

Clearly, the Athens police are not going to break down the door and arrest everyone here. They wouldn't be able to even if they knew what was going on up here! This reminds me of an argument with my mom about underage drinking. "The law is the law and we do not break the law."

I have assured my roommates that they have nothing to worry about, that if the impossible were to happen, my friends and I would take full responsibility. My roommates retort that, according to our lease, narcotic possession could lead to eviction of all parties in said apartment. To them, it's a risk they don't want to take. To me, it's an adventure, an exercise in ballsiness. I fear nothing!

For two years I have longed for the freedom of non-dorm living. Having my own room, bathroom, and kitchen is paradise, especially at a place like this. Another thing I was looking forward to was breaking the law. Yes, I have never been much of a law-abiding citizen and a home that facilitates illegal activities is my haven. While I happily and proudly drink underage, I cannot enjoy another pastime that I hold just as dear.

You may say I am making an issue out of nothing, that the drugs are overcoming my sense of priorities, or that I am just a dumb Pothead. All of these things may be true, and I apologize for offending anyone here; but like I said, I don't have to like it.


Though I will continue to live in uninterrupted harmony and friendship with my roommates, I will not take this lying down, I will smoke as close as possible to the apartment without putting my roommates at risk. This may mean smoking in my car, in the parking lot, or even outside the damn door. Hell, to drive my point of impunity home, I'll do it in public view! You may say I'm a stubborn bastard, well....

Sunday, September 19, 2004

To Whom It May Concern:

Today I list a few things that you may not know:

- When John Broz returns to Athens, we will welcome him with an open-bar dinner and then roast him. As Rachel Mace and I agree, he is very "roastable". It will be a great opportunity to deride this Nader-menagerie.

- The labia minoris is an unnecessary organ for sexual activity (with me). But I am definitely not choosy!

- I am training to be a self-taught OB/GYN. As George W. Bush once said:
"Too many good docs are getting out of business. Too many OB/GYN's aren't able to practice their love with women all across the country."
- I am going to become a CPA after getting my bachelor's in EE. Then I'll become Moose's accountant, because balancing a checkbook is a lot easier than balancing differential frequency-domain sinusoidal Fourier Dirac-delta response equations" .

- Konneker Research Facility is the scariest place ever. It's like insane-asylum horror movie meets sci-fi alien/dead people horror movie meets some serious Area 51 shit meets I am high.

Oh man, what a crazy and scary place. There Moose showed me the giant freezers which can hold over 60,000,000 blood samples at a time. The blood samples are kept at -80 degrees Fahrenheit. I stuck my arm into the freezer, but moose warned me that the cold temperatures would burn me. Even if the power went out, these freezers are powered by battery and generator backups.

Walking around in this 40,000 sq. ft. compound I saw star-trek style automatic doors and security cameras that really made me feel uneasy. And I only got to see the first floor! The constant reminders of "Radioactive Materials Within" kind of scared me as well. The most remarkable things that I got to see were the Geiger counters located outside the laboratories. They are there so someone can measure his radioactivity exposure before, and after he uses the lab. I'm not sure what kind of crazy things happen in Konneker, and I don't really want to. I was afraid to peek into some freezers, I was worried I would see a dead body in there or something.

-I went commando tonight.

- At Dance or Die I kept finding myself asking the same question: "Is that guy a guy or a girl?" The Union, once voted the 10th best dive bar in the state, is turning into a gay bar (look at the last line on the page). And they don't have Schlitz!

- Rachel Mace acts like she is always on her period.

- There is so much beer in the fridge at work that there is no room to put my lunch.

- I did a striptease for two girls tonight.

- I can trick good-looking girls to come into the office by shutting their internet down till they visit me.

- Killing begets killing. Peace is the absence of killing. Peace is the absence of ignorance.



Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Breaking News!

Jeff Meets Nader!

On Sunday, I had the honor and privilege to meet consumer activist and presidential candidate Ralph Nader. On a campaign trip though Ohio, Nader visited little old Athens, the most liberal county in Ohio. Nader brought a local crowd that overflowed our largest lecture hall. Thanks to friend and Nader coordinator John Broz, I was able to get behind-the-scenes access to Nader and his press conference. Very exciting stuff.

He never smiles.

A talented speaker.

This was awesome! Even though I'm not going to vote for the guy, he is an intelligent man who is passionate about justice and has done many courageous things for the American people. I even got a free, autographed copy of his book!

In other news:

Jason is the real retard! I have photographic evidence!

How could you say 'no' to a face like that?

I consider this case closed.

Friday, September 10, 2004

Bush Bash

I've recently stumbled upon some anti-Bush documents. Who could possibly be against fearless leader?

You don't have to read this one, it's a video from the daily show!

While we're on the topic of the Iraq War. I found this in today's New York Times. Read it and be enlightened:


It was Vietnam all over again - the heartbreaking head shots captioned with good old American names:

Jose Casanova, Donald J. Cline Jr., Sheldon R. Hawk Eagle, Alyssa R. Peterson.

Eventually there'll be a fine memorial to honor the young Americans whose lives were sacrificed for no good reason in Iraq.

Yesterday, under the headline "The Roster of the Dead," The New York Times ran photos of the first thousand or so who were killed. They were sent off by a president who ran and hid when he was a young man and his country was at war. They fought bravely and died honorably. But as in Vietnam, no amount of valor or heroism can conceal the fact that they were sent off under false pretenses to fight a war that is unwinnable.

How many thousands more will have to die before we acknowledge that President Bush's obsession with Iraq and Saddam Hussein has been a catastrophe for the United States?

Joshua T. Byers, Matthew G. Milczark, Harvey E. Parkerson 3rd, Ivory L. Phipps.

Fewer and fewer Americans believe the war in Iraq is worth the human treasure we are losing and the staggering amounts of money it is costing. But no one can find a way out of this tragic mess, which is why that dreaded word from the Vietnam era - quagmire - has been resurrected. Most Washington insiders agree with Senator John McCain, who said he believes the U.S. will be involved militarily in Iraq for 10 or 20 more years.

To what end? You can wave goodbye to the naïve idea that democracy would take root in Iraq and then spread like the flowers of spring throughout the Middle East. That was never going to happen. So what are we there for, other than to establish a permanent military stronghold in the region and control the flow of Iraqi oil?

The insurgency in Iraq will never end as long as the U.S. is occupying the country. And our Iraqi "allies" will never fight their Iraqi brethren with the kind of intensity the U.S. would like, any more than the South Vietnamese would fight their fellow Vietnamese with the fury and effectiveness demanded by the hawks in the Johnson administration.

The Iraqi insurgents - whether one agrees with them or not - believe they are fighting for their homeland, their religion and their families. The Americans are not at all clear what they're fighting for. Saddam is gone. There were no weapons of mass destruction. The link between Saddam and the atrocities of Sept. 11 was always specious and has been proven so.

At some point, as in Vietnam, the American public will balk at the continued carnage, and this tragic misadventure will become politically unsustainable. Meanwhile, the death toll mounts.

Elia P. Fontecchio, Raheen Tyson Heighter, Sharon T. Swartworth, Ruben Valdez Jr.

One of the reasons the American effort in Iraq is unsustainable is that the American people know very little about the Iraqi people and their culture, and in most cases couldn't care less. The war in Iraq was sold as a response to Sept. 11. As it slowly dawns on a majority of Americans that the link was bogus, and that there is no benefit to the U.S. from this war, only endless grief, the political support will all but vanish. (This could take awhile. In a poll done for Newsweek magazine this week, 42 percent of the respondents continue to believe that Saddam Hussein was directly involved in the Sept. 11 attacks.)

We've put our troops in Iraq in an impossible situation. If you are not permitted to win a war, eventually you will lose it. In Vietnam, for a variety of reasons, the U.S. never waged total war, although the enemy did. After several years and more than 58,000 deaths, we quit.

We won't - and shouldn't - wage total war in Iraq, either. But to the insurgents, the Americans epitomize evil. We're the crazed foreigners who invaded their country and killed innocent Iraqi civilians, including women and children, by the thousands. We call that collateral damage. They call it murder. For them, this is total war. President Bush never prepared the nation for the prolonged violence of this war. He still hasn't spoken candidly about it. If he has an idea for hauling us out of this quagmire, he hasn't bothered to reveal it.

The troops who are fighting and dying deserve better.

I couldn't agree more, but I still don't like Kerry.

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Lets get retarded in here

Swartzieee: your the retard b/c who invited melissa who invited cass over therefore allayn and i or just even me come over

In response to this:

Jeftrokat: were you drunk?
Swartzieee: i really need to reread what i write.. shut up your makig me horny

Who is the real retard? You decide 2004.