Runcible Blog

how sweet

I just finished watching Amélie on TV. It's the second time I've seen it (the first time was in the theater with that girl). Anyway, it is a beautiful movie and very well made. I recommend it to anyone. If you can tolerate the romantic fantasy it purports, it's really such a lovely story. Haha, the only problem is that now there are hundreds (thousands?) of girls who either think they are just like Amélie or who want to be like Amélie. I guess I can't blame them…she's so cute!
Audrey Tautou picture from

Broken Car

I must've slipped back into the go-to-bed-late-wake-up-later mode somehow. I was reading about RSS and XHTML and junk like that, and before I knew it, it was 4am. Way to burn up lots of time... Since my car failed re-inspection due to a torn CV boot, a tiny hole in the muffler, and a frozen windshield washer, I continue to tinker with this beast. The muffler hole was simple to fix with some sort of putty (there's a putty for everything, apparently). The windshield washer pump fortunately is not burnt out, but the nozzles and reservoir were frozen. No problem there -- just wait for spring! I bought a universal "quick boot" today and will attempt an install tomorrow. It is a quick fix and not exactly permanent, but I'm not quite daring enough to take off the joint to install a standard boot. (I once took apart the rear wheel of a single speed bike and couldn't figure out how to put it back together....bye bye bike) I'm also concerned that there might be an alternator problem looming, and the car seems to be burning a lot of gas. Why didn't I get a solar powered car? Oh, that's right -- the sun doesn't come out until March.

Say NO to iCab

iCab doesn't earn a place in my dock, I'm sorry to say. Today I fired it up for the first time in a while and saw just how poorly it renders XHTML and CSS. I don't know what the problem is, but other people have complained about it's lack of support for CSS. At least my site renders almost correctly in Internet Explorer for Mac. iCab is far off. If that company expects to charge $30 for a final version, I hope they bring the standards support up to par with other browsers(although Safari has plenty of its own problems. I just don't notice them...)

Questioning Kerry

I wonder why Senator John Kerry is getting so much support these days as he begins his run for the presidency. I think people are just glad that the Democratic party has a voice, but I wouldn't be so quick to jump on Kerry's bandwagon. While he may seem liberal, I think he is liberal only when it suits his political goals. He voted against the first Gulf War but seems to have changed his tune on Saddam this time around by voting to relinquish the authority to wage war that congress is supposed to have in favor of letting Bush run wild. He also voted for the Homeland Security Act, which 40% of Americans feel won't have an effect on safety. Let's not forget about Total Information Awareness. Kerry may say all the right words to gain Democrat support, but he still wouldn't do anything as politically risky as voting against this upcoming war with Iraq. So he can mumble all he wants about how badly the president is handling the situation, but Kerry didn't do much to change anything. There are some things about Kerry's recent, rather long-winded speech that bother me. Here's a contradiction if I ever read one:
Americans deserve better than a false choice between force without diplomacy and diplomacy without force. I believe they deserve a principled diplomacy...backed by undoubted military might...based on enlightened self-interest...

What does that mean?

We need to illuminate an alternative path to a futile Jihad against the world...a path that leads to deeper integration of the greater Middle East into the modern world order.

The gist of his speech is that he advocates a strong globalization effort, particularly in the Muslim world. It sounds like a massive, far-reaching project. And although he says we wouldn't be imposing our ideals on anyone, it sure does sound like it to me. This quote concerns me:

Regrettably the current Administration failed to take the opportunity to bring this issue to the United Nations two years ago or immediately after September 11th, when we had such unity of spirit with our allies.

It sounds like Kerry, if he were president, would've been pressuring Iraq shortly after 9/11/01. Does anyone else think that's a scary thought? There hasn't been any evidence that Iraq was directly involved in the terrorist attacks, and support for a war with Iraq is pretty low just about everywhere in the world, yet Kerry is advocating using that tragedy to gain support for pursuing an unrelated issue. If Bush had gone after Iraq immediately following September 11th, every American would be scratching their head in confusion. For his part, it seems as if he isn't as belligerent as the Bush administration, which is a plus. But Kerry is more willing to have America take charge in international issues. Under him, we would have a "war on terrorism", a "war on aids", a "war on Muslim poverty", a "war on anti-globalization", etc. His speech completely ignored domestic policy, which is disconcerting in itself. How can we attempt to meddle with all of these global problems while our own economy is going down the drain, and there is such a large divide between the "haves" and the "have-nots"? It's noble that Kerry says he wants to fight AIDS in Africa, but what about health care in U.S.A? It might earn him points to say that educating poor Muslims will be a priority, but don't forget the messy American education system's problems. I find it hard to believe that America can solve all of these problems without making compromises. If Kerry is going to be committed to doing something, fine, but let's not make it a half-assed effort in order to earn points in popularity polls. Kerry's final lines are garbage:

"America's resolve to bear the burdens and pay the price of leadership so that we may, as President Kennedy said on a cold January day long ago, 'assure the survival and success of liberty'"

"Bear the burdens"? Please. Yes, it's the White-Man's Burden to "globalize" the poor Muslim heathens (and get a mighty nice deal on their exports, like oil). America's foreign policy has been mildly self-centered at its best and downright nasty at its worst, and I have no reason to believe that Kerry's policy would be any different. While Bush may want to go into foreign countries with guns blazing in order to protect and increase American interests, Kerry is just as greedy -- except he would prefer to slip through the back door while no one is looking. Before Kim Jong-Il can say "Holy che-gi-ral (shit)!" , there'll be a McDonald's on every corner of Pyongyang. Look forward to Kerry continuously playing up his "war hero" image and increasing the comparisons to John F. Kennedy as the presidential race moves into full force. Finally, let me remind everyone that John Kerry is a member of the Order of Skull and Bones (along with Bush). Now, far be it for me to cry conspiracy, but it's a known fact that this group is a self-serving, power-crazed, secret society. I do hope that someone grills Kerry on the topic one of these days.