Alan K. Henderson's Weblog


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Monday, December 27, 2010

Breaking News - Classified Military Data Leaked To Public By Someone Other Than Julian Assange

CIA codebreaker deciphers coded Civil War message.


Saturday, December 25, 2010

The Reasons For the Season

(Original posted on December 23, 2002)

While Christmas is officially a celebration of the birth of Jesus, for much of the Western world December 25 has come to be a celebration of family and community. No other time of the year is so thoroughly saturated with images pointing to our highest hopes for such relationships - and no other time of the year so effectively highlights the difference between our ideals and the world as it really is. Jesus came to Earth to bridge not only the chasm between humanity and God, but also that rift that separates people from each other. Christmas reminds us that we live in a broken world, and it seeks to encourage us by showing us through religious and even many secular trappings how that brokenness can be fixed.

Best of holiday wishes to all my readers.

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Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas

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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas In Japan

Is celebrated with good ol' American fried chicken.

Don't tell Mike Huckabee and Michelle Obama.


Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Is Snow Disappearing From The UK?

Ed Driscoll found a real gem. In 2000, Independent ran an article predicting such a trend - but it ain't following suit.


Sunday, December 19, 2010


Congress just passed a bill requiring electric cars to make noise, so that pedestrians will know they're coming.

I just had a thought...we have ringtones, why not cartones? I can see a lot of electric car owners going with George Thorogood's "Bad To The Bone."


Football Video Of The Day

The Volokh Conspiracy has a great marching band video.


Saturday, December 18, 2010

Baby It's Cold Outside

Coldest December on record in Great Britain.

Someone At Fox Sports Needs To Be Punched Out By Don Meredith's Ghost

Fox Sports is experimenting with football game soundtracks.

An entire game with incidental music? No. No way. No freakin' way.


Thursday, December 16, 2010

Back In The USSR?

William A. Jacobson sees parallels between the Soviet Union's final decade and California's state of affairs.

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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

'Tis The Season


Political Mistletoe


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Monday, December 13, 2010

WikiLeaks Publishes Santa's Naughty/Nice List

(Roiters) He makes a list, checks it twice. Five billion names - the entire world population, minus children under the age of three, and observers of Festivus. And now it's on the Internet for all to see.

From London's Wandsworth prison, Julian Assange stated that the list was acquired just prior to his arrest. He refused to disclose his source, but Santa Claus identified the culprit - an elf named Lenny, who expressed dissatisfaction with the overtime rules and the health plan.

After passing the data to WikiLeaks, Lenny attempted to flee the North Pole by drifting away in an ice floe, but he was discovered by a film crew scouting locations for CBS's upcoming Arctic Survivor.

Santa placed Lenny under cottage arrest, relieving the disgruntled elf of all duties and reducing his eggnog and gingerbread rations.

North Pole computers have also been hit by a Stuxnet-like virus, but the cyber-attack was defeated. Santa won't say anything about his data security measures. MIT computer science professor Morton Case speculates that Santa outsources to computer-savvy juveniles on the "nice" list. "I bet a few teenage computer geeks are getting extra gift certificates to Fry's and Best Buy in their stocking this year."

Parents and those with relationship problems complain about one lacking feature in the "naughty" list: the reason for the individual's inclusion. "I discovered that my little Johnny is on the 'naughty' list," says Laura McDermott of Rochester, New York, "but the list doesn't say why, and I can't get Johnny to talk. I'm going to have to shell out for one of those Home Enhanced Interrogation kits from Sharper Image."

Many school officials around the country are proposing the use of Santa's list to identify students with high-risk discipline issues. Shermer, Illinois school board member Philip Brubeck's rationale is typical: "Kids don't act up in the home or the neighborhood and check their attitude at the door when they go to school." The American Civil Liberties Union and several other civil rights groups have already threatened lawsuits.

The Internet has already birthed three humor websites where viewers can make gift suggestions outside the legendary lump of coal for those on the "naughty" list. "I've got to hand it to them, those sites are funny," said Santa in a phone interview. "By the way, nobody gets a lump of coal anymore, except for naughty environmentalist - and Al Gore gets two. And to all of you who want me to give Michael Mann a hockey stick...been doing that for years."

Some express puzzlement that Muslim names are included on the naughty-and-nice list. Harvard theologian James Kopf explains. "Except for Festivus participants, communities that do not celebrate Christmas do not turn away Santa - they simply devise some other celebration to revolve around his arrival. Pakistanis don't need to do much inventing - they already have a big holiday on December 25. Hindus and various other faiths observe the Winter Solstice. When in doubt, the Christmas-averse pick some celebrity's birthday for an excuse to party and open presents. I know a few policy wonks who drink a toast to Karl Rove."

No individual name on the "naughty" list has attracted much attention, save one: Osama bin Laden. This revelation that the al-Qaeda mastermind is still alive has prompted many to petition Santa's assistance in either apprehending bin Laden or lobbing a few grenades down his chimney - or at least disclose his whereabouts. "Sure, bin Laden deserves to be taken out of circulation, but I have to remain neutral when it comes to wars and law enforcement actions. No exceptions. I'm Santa Claus, not the A-Team."

United States Attorney General Eric Holder expressed concerns that some of those outed through the publication of the "naughty" list might seek some sort of retribution, carefully avoiding mention of his own presence on that list. The US Postal Service has already intercepted 50,000 death threats, a third of them written in crayon.

Santa shows no worry over the threats. "Children have been trying to catch a glimpse of me for centuries. If nobody can even get in the same room with me, nobody can hurt me. I'm the one who taught that trick to Chuck Norris."

"What worries me is that some nutcase will take it out on a department store Santa, or on whoever was involved with the reason he or she made the 'naughty' list. Malls are stepping up their security, and Chuck is out there. We'll work together to make this Christmas as safe as possible."

Santa added one final comment: "Oh, and anyone in mall security who so much as puts on a pair of blue latex gloves is going on next year's 'naughty' list faster than Julian Assange."

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Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Day Of Infamy, Day Of Hope (One Day Late)

See my annual Pearl Harbor remembrance here.

I have had so many hassles over the past few days that the date completely slipped my mind.

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Monday, December 06, 2010

Don Meredith (1938-2010)

Just saw the news at the Spat.

Here's some other obits. This one features a photo from his SMU football days. He played under that same number for the Cowboys (click image in the article for larger version). This article has a photo of the Meredith-Cosell-Gifford Monday Night Football lineup.

Here's a nice tribute video - it starts with Meredith's place on the Cowboys' Ring of Honor.

Rest in peace, Don.

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Earlier today (on my way to jury duty) I heard the ABC Radio News announcer state that Congress had established a compromise that will annoy "everybody except taxpayers." An interesting choice of words, considering that taxpayers (outside of our ruling class) vastly outnumber those annoyed folks.

The WaPo story on the tax compromise is here.


InstaHeadline Du Jour

AMY ALKON: Do You Have Slutty DNA?

Lounge lizards all around the world wait for Ron Popeil to invent the Slutty DNA Detector ®.


Hocus Pocus

Once again, Dallas County has cast the incantation that summons me to jury duty. Managed to not get selected for a jury this time.


Friday, December 03, 2010

I Get Results From Julian Assange (?)

Recall a question I raised the other day:

[D]oes Julian Assange have access to classified data from countries that aren't especially all that friendly with Western democracies?

Via Transterrestrial Musings, it looks like the answer could be yes:

[Assange] told the global media that new leaks would expose more secrets not only about the U.S. military but about other "repressive regimes," such as Russia and China. The signals coming from Moscow, however, suggest that the Russian reaction will not be as reserved as America's. So is WikiLeaks really ready to take on the world's more callous states?

If he goes after the British, this could turn into a James Bond movie.

Time for popcorn!

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Thursday, December 02, 2010

Conspiracy Corner

There's an "it was a government inside job" conspiracy regarding the thwarted Portland bombing attack, and Michael J. Totten responds.


Putin Disses Wikileaks Remark

The Russian Prime Minister takes issue with DefSec Robert Gates' characterization of Russia as an "oligarchy."

If Putin were really clever, he would have called Obama on the red phone and said, "Hey pal, nobody in an administration crawling with czars like yours is in any position to criticize Russia's record on representative government."

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Wednesday, December 01, 2010

So Long, And Thanks For All The Fish

Roger L. Simon hires dolphins to deliver a summary of the Wikileaks document dump.


Double Standards

Some information leaks are more equal than others.

I haven't paid that much attention to Wikileaks - which probably explains this random thought - but does Julian Assange have access to classified data from countries that aren't especially all that friendly with Western democracies?

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