Barbara Bush’s Compassion

I can’t wait to hear Kanye West’s commentary on this one:

She was part of a group in Houston today at the Astrodome that included her husband and former President Bill Clinton, who were chosen by her son, the current president, to head fundraising efforts for the recovery. Sen. Hilary Clinton and Sen. Barack Obama were also present.

In a segment at the top of the show on the surge of evacuees to the Texas city, Barbara Bush said: “Almost everyone I’ve talked to says we’re going to move to Houston.”

Then she added: “What I’m hearing is they all want to stay in Texas. Everyone is so overwhelmed by the hospitality.

“And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this–this (she chuckles slightly) is working very well for them.”

(via Huffington Post)

Audio clip of it here.

Utah Says No to Intelligent Design

A small ray of hope from Utah?

Unlike the Kansas School Board, which earlier this summer approved allowing educators to teach theories in addition to evolution that explain life on Earth, the Utah Board of Education on Friday unanimously approved a position statement supporting the continued exclusive teaching of evolution in state classrooms.

Only two people out of the dozens who attended Friday’s meeting sided with Sen. Chris Buttars, R-West Jordan, and his proposal to allow teaching “intelligent design” as a theory to explain the origins of life.

(Thanks Cobra427)

How to Detect Lies

Only good against amateurs.

The following techniques to telling if someone is lying are often used by police, and security experts. This knowledge is also useful for managers, employers, and for anyone to use in everyday situations where telling the truth from a lie can help prevent you from being a victim of fraud/scams and other deceptions.

Rent My Daughter



RentMyDaughter is a subsidiary of ChildNet Services, with its corporate headquarters in San Diego, CA. In addition, we also maintain 4 regional offices across the United States.

RentMyDaughter provides safe and trustworthy child-rental services in multiple metropolitan areas. Our service area is growing every year and we are on target to provide services in 50 cities by the end of 2006.

Looks like a hoax site to me. There is one for also.


Hacking Press Your Luck


Otherwise known as The Michael Larson Incident.

On his next two spins, he landed on top-dollar squares for a total of $1250. In round two, he earned seven free spins. In no time at all, every single plunge was landing him on prized squares good for cash and additional free spins. Larsen increased his winnings from $2000 to $5000, then $14,000, $18,000 and $28,000. He was successfully avoiding Whammies like no other player before him. It was amazing. Each time he hit the plunger, he’d land on one of the only two squares affording both money and another chance to spin. It was like the Whammies didn’t exist.

Inside the director’s booth, a wave of fear was slowly crashing over the producers. The broadcast pace of Press Your Luck required evenly-spaced commercial breaks, timed to coincide with a player eventually hitting a Whammy. The player would go bankrupt, the action would stop, and host Peter Tomarken could take a well-needed pause for a drink of water, a squirt of hair spray, and a dabble of make-up.

But there was something Michael Larsen hadn’t told anyone.

Back in his home state of Ohio, he didn’t have just one television, he had several. Each television was hooked up to a private networking farm of VCRs in his living room. In November of 1983, he recorded every episode of Press Your Luck over the course of several weeks. He studied these videotapes, slowed them down, and froze the images to examine randomized tile sequences frame by frame. If you haven’t already guessed, Michael Larsen discovered that the Big Board on Press Your Luck was not a randomized display, but an iterative, sequential pattern which gave itself away once you knew what to look for.

(via Schneier on Security)

Sell the Ranch


Another open letter to Bush requesting he sell his ranch and donate the money to the victims of Hurricane Katrina.

Sell the Ranch. That’s right, sell your ranch in Texas, and donate the money to the victims of this horrible tragedy. I realize you love your ranch; you’ve spent a good portion of your presidency there, doing important things like clearing brush, eating pretzels, and taking naps. But that’s exactly why you need to sell it. So many people have lost their homes; the least you can do is give up ownership of one of your many residences for their benefit to show that you have some trace of compassion. Think of it as a symbolic gesture that you’re finally ready to stop running away from the responsibilities of the Oval office, and you’re ready to meet head-on the full duties of the highest office in the land.

You’ve said that you communicate with God, that you talk to Jesus. So what would Jesus do? Would not Jesus Christ sell one of his luxury homes to help the indigent, huddled masses yearning to breathe free? At auction, your Ranch would fetch at least a couple million dollars. Would Jesus not donate that money to the poor and starving?