Archive for November, 2011

MRSA Comes Home

Wednesday 30 November 2011 3 comments

MRSA officially includes a wide range of Staph infections which resist antibiotics, but symbolizes our Western idiocy with demanding the biggest gun for the most minor discomforts.

Because of antibiotic abuse, which should be classed as malpractice, we now find visiting a hospital frankly dangerous, because MRSA is found there more than anywhere else. I tend to avoid clinical treatment for this very reason. But sometimes the crap finds you at home.

What’s left for us? Home treatments range between natural medicine and “unauthorized” home remedies. I have a recent experience with the latter which might save you money and some misery.

As someone given to sinus allergies, I learned some time ago how to perform a nasal flush. You can purchase over-the-counter kits for this; I use this one but it’s easy to find others which are just as good. You can even create your own. This is fine most of the time, but there are moments when flushing in an upright position won’t do. For those times, I lie on the bed with my head hanging off the end, and pour the solution directly up my nose. This guarantees a good full flush. I typically use an 8 oz. (.25l) squeeze bottle, with hot tap water and ¼ tsp. (1.25ml) of pickling salt (avoid iodized table salt if possible), and a pinch of baking soda to reduce the burning sensation. It requires you learn how to close the opening between your sinuses and your mouth. I give it a 90 second count and repeat at least once. I turn over and drain into a wastebasket, then blow gently to remove the residue.

At some point in the past month, I must have gotten a pretty serious Staph infection from somewhere, because the usual efforts didn’t relieve the constant misery for more than a day or two. It kept coming back, even when the allergen indexes were low. I decided to add something to the salt solution. I skipped the baking soda and added a scant capful of hydrogen peroxide. Granted, this burns mightily after the first flush, but isn’t harmful. The point is, this time it worked. I got a color indication in what I blew out.

But it wasn’t over. About an hour later, I had an itching burning sensation in one ear. It was a small discharge of something other than earwax, and it caused inflammation and infection around the ear opening. About the same time, I noticed similar symptoms in both nostril openings. The usual “triple antibiotic ointment” treatment had no effect on either, as they both grew worse. This was pretty nasty stuff. Nor did the likes of tea tree oil and Campho-Phenique® do any good.

For the ear, I tried a cosmetic puff (AKA “cotton ball”) soaked in hydrogen peroxide, pushed into the opening of the ear. I changed it every couple of hours after it dried. It needed about three days of this, round-the-clock to finally get the itching which indicated it was now attacking my skin, since the infection was gone.

This didn’t work for the nostrils. I actually had to resort to Dakins Solution (PDF). I had to cut the cosmetic puff in half to make it fit comfortably. I could only stand about a half-day of this at a time, and I substituted tea tree oil in the evenings to heal the skin, which was pretty roughed up by the Dakins. But after about three days, the symptoms abated. Yes, it burned harshly, but the dilution was low enough to keep me from worrying about inhaling noxious fumes.

Had I gone to the Veterans clinic, they would have shuffled me off with some series of antibiotics, whatever the government was contracted to purchase this month, serving merely to create yet a new resistance in whatever strain of MRSA this was, plus making me ill in the process.

Categories: Uncategorized

Wireless Carrier SNAFU (Updated)

Wednesday 30 November 2011 1 comment

You may recall the acronym SNAFU approximates: “Situation Normal, All Fouled Up.”

Is anyone really surprised at the depth of detail in which this Carrier IQ company is logging your every touch and use of your smartphone? Pay attention to the details if such things matter to you — it’s found on many Android, Blackberry and Nokia phones. So far, no one has piped up with a similar discovery on Apple phones.

Given the current fascist bent in government and corporate cuddling, you would hardly be surprised if Eckhart is labeled a “hacker” in the pejorative sense, and perhaps even a terrorist. He’s using a cable connecting his smartphone to a computer running Ubuntu, which is able to track every hidden data transfer using what we call a “packet sniffer” — something long a standard tool on Linux and Unix, if you know how to activate it. I once used it to discover how and why the old Mozilla browser suite was refusing to run on a system I had some years ago. The browser was ignoring the networking information the operating system had established and was trying to make its own connection queries independently. I never got an answer why that was, but that behavior changed in the next release, as I recall.

Meanwhile, it seems this CIQ snooping only applies in the US, so far. It’s probably not illegal, just utterly immoral and unethical. Naturally, that means it is precisely what most wireless carriers will do because there’s money in it. I’m sure, somewhere buried in the contract, is the permission signed away to do just this sort of snooping. This will create a firestorm of protest from interested parties, and I wonder if any lawsuits will arise.

This is just a snapshot, a quick peek under the covers. Valid and ethical information gathering would be signal strength and such, but this is pervasive and detailed down to the hardware level of keycodes and the like. This information is being stored, and this is what government queries, not simply to gain an unfair advantage in prosecution, but simply in the now-normal pervasive surveillance of which we all need some awareness.

This is not a simply mistake or miscalculation; it’s wholly calculated and evil.

Update: I’m reading all the apologists and backpedaling coming out on the Net regarding this issue. More than one has said it’s all necessary and for your own good, to improve service, etc. So let’s run down the main points.

1. Consumers are not properly informed. This is not simply the matter that it’s buried in the long legalese contract, but that everyone with half a brain knows a great many users would be shocked by this if they knew and would drop the account and find another provider who didn’t pull this stunt. Sprint is currently the most egregious violator with the poorest apology, and stands to lose some serious business on this.

2. Carrier IQ is outright lying about what their software does. This isn’t simply the device paying attention to your inputs. This was caught by packet sniffing — watching the traffic as it goes out over the network and home to CIQ servers. Every useful interaction you have with that device goes directly to CIQ servers, recorded in detail with your ID and everything. It’s also sent in the clear, unencrypted, even when you are otherwise encrypting everything with another network entity. This is criminal negligence, because this defeats the whole purpose of encryption. CIQ is invading your privacy to the nth degree, recording it all on their servers, and exposing your traffic unencrypted to any fool with an ounce of technical intelligence to intercept it. Granted, it’s up to your carrier to pay for whatever portion of this data they want, but CIQ has you by the short and curly hairs.

3. You as user have no options. You aren’t permitted any access to this stuff. If you wish to use something which is now very nearly an essential utility service, necessary for normal social interaction and business with just about anyone except the local migratory bird population, then you are forced to swallow this.

Finally, I fully expect the geeks and nerds to discover, say Verizon, is lying about their complete denial of this. But that won’t matter. CIQ is the real evil culprit here, and I’m willing to bet they have ties to some covert US government agency one way or another.

Update2: I stand corrected; it is not packet sniffing we see in the video, but log sniffing. That is, our intrepid geek Eckhart is running a utility which picks up the internal chatter, echoing what CIQ is recording in its logs. So it may well be not everything is shipped out, but the mere presence of such depth leads us to wonder how it is the CIQ logs are parsed and pared down, if they are, prior to transmittal to the servers. Until CIQ comes clean, it doesn’t really change our suspicions.

Once Again: I’m a Terrorist

Tuesday 29 November 2011 2 comments

I am associated with officially designated “terrorists.”

That is, living here in Central Oklahoma, I reject the entire official government narrative of the Murrah Building Bombing. I tend to agree with the contents of this site. And said site is labeled as a terrorist website. Oh, and I read AntiWar daily.

It shouldn’t be necessary to offer a vast list of links in this Age of the Net. The conspiracy sites, ranging from drooling idiots to serious scholars, are too easy to find. Here’s a hint: Look up Terry Yeakey in your favorite search engine. Just one hero murdered by the feds because he knew too much, and was willing to tell it. Oklahomans still live today under the thumb of state officials who remain in place to keep the lies alive as the official story.

Because I write and post comments in support of tearing down the government lies, I am classed with the terrorists. The only reason I don’t show up on such lists is because I don’t get that much traffic, and I don’t specialize in single issues of that sort. That’s because I’m an even bigger threat than even they realize: I promote the Laws of God as a whole, as the means to understanding everything in life. By those Laws, there is no good thing in the US government worth saving. I have dared to serve notice of God’s judgment against that government, and the impending doom for all Americans who don’t repent.

Granted, that I warn Christians not to resist (another prophetic message) may also serve to deflect attention, I wouldn’t count on that very long. Sooner or later I’m sure I’ll end up on that honor roll.

I’m a terrorist in the eyes of my government because I dare to suggest our rulers are evil.

Categories: sanity Tags: , , ,

Trail Closed Forever

Monday 28 November 2011 Leave a comment

I was out on the trail today and ran into a hunter. He wasn’t particularly rude or anything, but he rattled off the name of the property owner, and who had the hunting lease. He told me I wasn’t supposed to be there. This is the first I heard they didn’t want anyone using the trails, so that ends the matter.

It’s not as if I feel any sharp sense of loss or anger over the work I did and can no longer enjoy. Frankly it was the adventure of exploring and the doing of the work itself. It was just a hobby. There are certainly other places I can walk.

Of course, this means I won’t be helping the firefighters next time there’s a wildfire, as well. By the time fire season comes around again, I’ll have forgotten too much, and things will have changed with the hunters now alert to other users. You see, there’s a bunch of kids and such who have been running around out there quite a bit. So there won’t be any maintenance and trash pick up without me there.

So when I turned to leave, I told the hunter, “Enjoy my trails.”

Categories: personal Tags: , ,

Rough Play

Monday 28 November 2011 Leave a comment

We may never know the whole story, but it would appear the NATO forces attacked a Pak border unit out of sheer meanness.

So far, the NATO apologists can’t come up with a good lie.

The elephant in the room of course, is the possibility that the US warplanes intentionally attacked a Pakistani military base. It isn’t clear why they would do this, but in the absence of a decent excuse for why warplanes would cross the border and attack a known base on top of a mountain on a clear night, it remains impossible to discount.

Having been forced to participate in several official coverups as a Military Policeman, I can assure you the US and NATO are lying through their teeth. Whether the Pak are lying is not the point, because two wrongs don’t make a right. Wanton murder of allied troops is not good policy execution.

Of course, a great many non-MSM commentators have long believed our government had already decided Pakistan was the enemy without publicly admitting it. So we are playing games, and we aren’t playing by any rules anyone in human history would recognize as representing even a smidgen of statecraft. It violates all the international treaties we’ve ever signed.

Edit: Of course, we treat our own even worse. Such is the new policy of American government: everyone is an enemy.

This is just one more reason God has already condemned the US, along with the rest of the West. His wrath upon us is just.

Categories: sanity Tags: , , ,

Idle Wish

Sunday 27 November 2011 Leave a comment

Someday before I die, I’d love to visit the Aegean Sea. I want to swim on some small island shore, maybe row a good bit. No, there is absolutely no justification, aside from perhaps just hoping to see some of the places which figure so large in the First Century Church.

Categories: personal Tags: , ,

Leftover Turkey Salad

Saturday 26 November 2011 2 comments

It’s not the salad left over, but the leftover turkey.

Any meat will do, but for this time of year in the US, turkey is abundant and cheap. I frankly enjoy using my bare hands to strip all the meat off the carcass when the feast is done, because it allows me to find the gristle and pull the meat away.

Grind the meat. I have one of those old hand-cranked kitchen food grinders, which I still love to use. I push through as much as a pound of meat, then add fresh carrots and celery. I also added half a small yellow onion. If you don’t have pickle relish, run the pickles through. Most people prefer a sweet relish. In this case, I used some pickled sweet peppers my wife made from our garden produce using her own recipe. The point is to sweeten the whole thing and add some moisture; I even dump in some of the sweet pickle juice. I run a slice of whole wheat bread behind everything else through the grinder to push through the last bit of vegetables.

Finally, add some creamy salad dressing. Here in the US, most people like mayonnaise, but I grew up hating the taste. I still hate it; nowhere have I been in the world where I’ve liked the local version of mayonnaise. So we’ve always used Kraft Miracle Whip. Stir in your favorite until it reaches the consistency you like. I want it to stick together and be spreadable. It will keep for several days in the refrigerator without any hint of spoilage due to the pickle vinegar.

Today I ate it on a slice of pita bread, which I lay in the skillet with a pat of real butter. Using low heat, I put a lid over it to catch the moisture from the melting butter. I heat the pale side down first, then turn it and lay thinly sliced cheese across that face while the browner side gets warm. Because of the low heat, it gets just slightly crispy. Dump a large serving of the turkey salad on top, spread, and eat.

Yes, I use my fingers so I can lick off the butter. Men are like that. And I’m still losing weight.

Categories: personal Tags: , ,

Open Communication Lines

Friday 25 November 2011 Leave a comment

Necessity is the mother of implementation.

Users of the social news and community site Reddit don’t like the way the government seems to be muscling in on the Internet. So they plan to build a new one.

So far, it’s being called Meshnet. The technology and basic concept are hardly new, and the idea has been kicked around since at least as long as I have been on the Internet, more than 15 years. Now that there is a real threat to the freedom of the current network, people are actually digging into the ugly details of implementation.

I’m likely to participate if I can. It would mean buying some new hardware. Where I live, that would include running an antenna up atop the house because significant range depends on line-of-sight. To our advantage, we do live perched on a hilltop. That we live in a relatively rural area is symbolic of why I love the Net so much.

I’ll probably never have a “best friend” sort of buddy; the things which matter most to me are too esoteric. So much so my very closest pals are currently virtual ones, scattered across the face of the earth. The nearest one would be more than 300 miles (480km) geographically. About half of my real friends are on other continents. Without the Internet, I would be even more isolated.

Unlike some Net nerds and geeks, I didn’t choose the Net because I couldn’t handle people in meat space. I didn’t dig into computers because they made more sense than people. Mine is simply a glorified typewriter. It has always been a means of communication with other people.

We may need this Meshnet all too soon, I’m afraid.

Trail: Ready for 2011-2012 Season

Thursday 24 November 2011 2 comments

Today I went out in two different sessions and finished the trail.

I am leaving it a little rougher this year, instead of clipping every single bit of growth. I’ll see if there is sufficient use to keep it all tromped down. I plan to hit it at least once each day as part of my ongoing work out plans.

Side note: I try to work out five times every day. I usually get at least three. That’s a heavy workout at wake-up to get the metabolism going. Then again around mid-morning just enough to make me break a sweat. Somewhere around mid-day I do the aerobic portion, either walking or riding my bike. Then in the afternoon I try to do something vigorous, again until I break a sweat. Lately that’s been turning a few rows with shovel in my garden. Finally, unless something has caused me to hurt too much, I try to workout before bedtime.

I made sure the trail is just barely bike-able, too.

Aerial photo of woodland with trail overlay

Approximate trail in orange.

Categories: health Tags: , ,

Unholy Days

Thursday 24 November 2011 2 comments

Holidays reveal the best and worst of humanity, but often more of the latter.

Here in the US we celebrate something called Thanksgiving Day. It’s hardly what the label implies. The mythology taught in public institutions is tiresome. We aren’t going to explore that, but look at what the mere existence of statist orthodoxy has produced.

It would be easy to go too far either way. I could fully engage and be all social, even though I feel nothing of the sort. I’m an introvert. I have better things to do than lie to Aunt Hildie about how wonderful her foul concoctions are stinking up the house. Civility does have limits; they are rules about how we do or don’t discuss what really matters. It’s about diverting unjustified demands, from within ourselves and coming from others. It’s as much about stopping fakery as it is sparing feelings.

Because we refuse to balance, holidays often turn into disasters, or at least a form of hateful drudgery that serves no good purpose. They certainly bring no joy.

The basic assumption is feelings matter. They don’t. The agreement which is fundamental to civility is we don’t get too deeply into each other’s business, and this crap which says I’m supposed to care about yours but you don’t have to care about mine is evil. I’ll keep my rude thoughts to myself; you keep your rude demands I like your crap to yourself. Success should not be keeping peace long enough for everyone to suffer equally through a very unpleasant social constraint. This Germanic feudal demand that one party must submit to the other should have been mercilessly slaughtered long ago.

You aren’t permitted to demand I appear in your court. You aren’t permitted to burden me with social obligations for your own convenience and conceit. Too often what is promoted as “respect for the family” is simply “respect for my ego” when it comes from some wannabe matron. It’s rule by embarrassment; a raw and brutal coercion as ugly as that on the bloody streets of political protest. I’m not your servant, and you aren’t mine.

That is, unless we agree to something under a godly covenant. Your personal fantasies of family tradition is not a covenant. If you were willing to submit to God’s Laws and more ancient traditions, we would have room for discussion. Otherwise it’s just projecting your wishes, demanding everyone feel what you feel. This is about as evil and dehumanizing as it gets.

So long as Western Civilization demonizes the “live and let live” ethic necessary for world peace, no Western holiday will be a “holy day.”

Categories: sanity Tags: , ,

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