MsGeek.Org v2.0

The ongoing saga of a woman in the process of reinvention.
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Sunday, March 07, 2004

I haven't posted here in a long time so I'd better get on it.

First off, an annoyance which has been under my skin for a while. The major local news stations all claim that they have a new and special doppler radar setup, which THEY BUILT all by their lonesome. ABC 7 TV in particular has been a major offender on this score. Well, guess what, folks, they're just putting their own brand on Uncle Sam's very own Nexrad. Doppler 7000+? Thank the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. You see, when people talk about the government and how much they waste our tax dollars, an example like this of something that no single company can build on their own is very educational. When companies like Disney/ABC (and Viacom/CBS, and Fox/NewsCorp, and GE/NBC) take credit for something that they only indirectly financed if at all, you don't get an accurate picture of where your money goes.

Repeat after me. We got a spiffy doppler radar system because Uncle Sam built it. Not Disney/ABC, not any of the big networks, not ClearChannel, not any other big media mega-conglomerate. Thank the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for Doppler 7000+ and whatever else the other networks calls it. We also got a spiffy Internet because DARPA, a government agency, did all the legwork and spent the money on it. Interstate highways? Thank your Uncle. There are some things that are too big and don't turn immediate profits. Those are things that aren't especially attractive to the Private Sector. Who's going to do it if not the Private Sector? Umm, it's that big, bad guh'mint doing it.

I said it before, I'll say it again. The money you give to Uncle Sam is the price you pay for civilization. Same goes for your State government. Same goes for your city government. Your taxes are the price you pay for civilization. Want your potholes filled, the streetlights working, the power kept on, your kids schooled? It doesn't come cheap. There ain't no such thing as a free lunch.

On a lighter note, we now have our Ghetto Home Theatre. This Slashdot article was part of the process of figuring out how to make it all work. It turned out that all that neat information about TV Tuner Boxes was unnecessary. This is what Le Target had on sale last week for $88. In the immortal words of Dewey from "School Of Rock"...this TV melts faces. (We bought the "School Of Rock" DVD at the same time. Good flick.) Stereo circuitry, a picture tube from Panasonic, a nice clear picture, 3 inputs. Kicks all manner of ass. Add to this the mighty set of Advent AV370 powered speakers I have been using for the past four years with computers I have, my two DVD players, my VCR and my Dreamcast, and basically what you get is the world's cheapest Home Theatre. I'm stoked. W00t. I've been watching some of my DVDs and I'm in awe. No more envy of the folks with the booming home entertainment centers. Pass the popcorn, dude.