Can anyone say “conspiracy”? Steven Colbert’s presidential run has been smashed to pieces by the humorless Democratic executive council of South Carolina, which voted 13-3 to deny his application to be put on the ballot as a Democrat. As Waring Howe, a member of the council, put it Colbert “serves to detract from the serious candidates on the ballot.” But Dennis Kucinich, the guy who sees UFOs, is allowed on? Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
Not all the members of the council lacked a sense of humor. State Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter (who I think outranks Mr. Missed-the-Point Howe, there) chided the people who voted against Colbert’s name being put on the ballot as taking things a little too seriously. I happen to agree. Yes, Colbert’s run was a stunt aimed at publicizing his show. But he could have brought a lot of publicity to South Carolina through it. It’s not every day you get a favorite son with a much-loved faux-news show. I mean, how many times has Bill O’Reilly extolled his home state? Or Anderson Cooper? Pshaw.
Unfortunately, Colbert can’t run as a Republican, either, since he missed the filing deadline to apply for a spot on the ballot. I can’t blame him, though. Whereas the fee for the Democrat Party was only $2,500 (fully refunded after his denial), the fee for the Republicans was a whopping $35,000. Um, okay. Either the Democrats have really low standards or the Republicans think too highly of themselves…wait…right, I forgot: both are true.
Anyways, I was so looking forward to those Colbert for President bumper stickers…guess I’ll have to stick with the Picard-Riker one for now. Also, if you’re interested, I came across a very handy replacement for Wikipedia. Guaranteed to have more truthiness than Wikipedia will ever have.
Updated 6/14/10: In the interest of promoting discussion (as this is by far the most-visited post on my site), I’m reopening the comments for this post. However, keep in mind that the post is nearly three years old and contains outdated and possibly outright incorrect information. Keep it clean.
9/11 conspiracy theorists are, unfortunately, a rather common breed, especially considering they come from all political ideologies. Websites like Prison Planet don’t help, especially when they bill themselves as reporting the truth. I’m rather fond of saying that truth requires proof. Half-assed theories aren’t proof. Of course, linking to things like this on the main page of the site doesn’t help when it comes to credibility.
Anyways, who exactly is Alex Jones? He’s best known as a conspiracy theorist who runs a radio show and the aforementioned Prison Planet (I’m not giving that site the pleasure of a link). In fact, I’d say he’s one of the most vocal opponents of the official version of the events of 9/11. As for his political ideology, he’s a paleoconservative. Think Rush Limbaugh but worse. He’s so extreme it scares me to think people actually believe what he says. Now, I don’t mind conservatives, but when anyone, regardless of their political beliefs, willingly believes that the government of the United States launched missiles at its own buildings (including a government one, containing key members of the Defense Department), killed 2000 of its own civilians (2000 less people paying taxes), and yet was unable to whack the most vocal conspiracy theorists (such as the maker of Loose Change), I tend to think they’re a little crazy.
Continue reading ‘Alex Jones is a nutcase’
I tried taking a break from Wikipedia after a little dispute I had there. It only lasted about a day or so. Ah, Wikipedia…you just keep dragging me back in.
I hear this a lot, and quite frankly, I’m sick of it: “Wikipedia isn’t a good source because anyone can edit it.” Yes, the second part is accurate, but the first part…well, it’s not so accurate. People assume that, because just about anyone can edit (or vandalize) Wikipedia, the information contained in its articles must not be reliable or even true. What such people don’t realize, however, is that information in Wikipedia must be verifiable and sourced. You can’t change George Washington’s birth year to 2021 and expect it to stick because anyone can look in a history book and see that it was really 1732. Disinformation is readily found and deleted by the army of editors dedicated to keeping Wikipedia reliable.
The thing is, Wikipedia is intended as a jumping-off point. You can find information in it for anything from the Constitution of the United States to Intel processors, with millions of things in between. Information from verifiable sources is compiled into one easy to read page. If you ever doubt the information, just go to the source. If there isn’t a source, look it up yourself. Wikipedia isn’t meant to be your only source for information. It’s more of a compilation of many sources. Think about that the next time you criticize someone for daring to quote a Wikipedia article.
There are quite a few browsers out there, but they are, for the most part, pretty much the same. The only major differences are in their rendering engines, that is, the code that allows them to display web pages. The most popular one is Gecko, which is used by Firefox, Mozilla, and Netscape. Another is Presto, used by Opera. Finally, there is Trident, the layout engine used by Internet Explorer. Of course there are others, but this isn’t a post about layout engines. You’ve got Wikipedia for that.
Anyways, the rendering (or layout) engine of a browser determines how HTML and CSS are displayed. Most browsers display things similarly, but not Internet Explorer. IE has always been the black sheep of the browser family, preferring proprietary functions (such as ActiveX) to standards. Of course, no browser is completely standards-compliant, but IE is as far off as it can get. The most recent version, IE7, has solved quite a few problems, especially with CSS, but it can still be a hassle to code a website that will work perfectly in all browsers. The problem is that IE is still the most used browser. If your site doesn’t work in IE, you’re going to have a lot of people who will steer clear of it.
The answer? Well, you could just eliminate anything in your site that’s causing problems with IE. Or, you could let web surfers know about Firefox. Chances are that the only reason most people are still using IE is that they don’t know about any alternatives. Read on to see an easy way to let IE users know they should switch to Firefox while allowing non-IE users to continue on with no trouble.
Continue reading ‘Browser sniffing’