Poll on Florida’s Amendment #2

A poll released Monday shows that 88 percent of Florida voters support allowing adults to legally use marijuana for medical purposes, bolstering the arguments of advocates who have placed a constitutional amendment on the November ballot seeking legalization.

The poll, conducted by Quinnipiac University, indicates widespread support across political and demographic lines — Republicans and Democrats, men and women, young and old — for legal medical marijuana if it is prescribed by physicians. The constitutional amendment needs approval from 60 percent of voters to pass.

The Quinnipiac poll found that legal use of medical marijuana was supported by 93 percent of Democrats, 89 percent of independents and 80 percent of Republicans. It was supported by 92 percent of voters ages 18 to 29 and 84 percent of voters ages 65 and older.

link

For me this comes down to the people’s right to individual freedom. Government shouldn’t have the power to interfere with the decisions people make about how they live their lives, provided your activities don’t negatively affect the people around you.

Snowden Backlash

It’s the institutions that need to demonstrate respect for the public they allegedly serve. If Snowden or any other American is skeptical of institutional power, it is not due to any personal failing on their part. The lack of respect is a direct outgrowth of the bad behavior of the nation’s institutions, behavior that has undermined Americans’ trust in them.

Link

Colorado’s Amendment 64

Pot legal in Colorado

Opponents warned that the law — despite its 21-year age minimum — would set Colorado and Washington on a collision course with the federal government and encourage teenagers to use marijuana. It is still unclear how much will change. The streets here in Denver and across Colorado are already lined with shops, their windows decorated with green crosses and pot leaves, advertising all-natural plant treatments and herbal health aids.

We have a similar scene here in Florida, only it’s not pot these stores sell, it’s liquor. The “health aids” advertising is simply a side effect of how these initiatives get introduced, Colorado has had medical marijuana laws for some time now. In the end, it all comes down to individual rights. Congrats to voters in my home state, they did the right thing.

Netgear WN3000 Universal WiFi Range Extender Review

Short summary: I can’t get this thing to work and will likely return it. Updated, it’s sort of working now. See updates below.

This is unfortunate because the device has most of the features I was looking for – easy router config and connect, MAC address filtering, and all the normal forms of connection encryption.

I was unsuccessful in connecting an XBox 360 and two different tablets (Win8 and Android). All devices failed to aquire an I.P. address. The extender also does something funky with virtual mac addresses I was never able to figure out. (Speaking of which, what the heck is a virtual mac address? The internet doesn’t have a good definition.) Another complaint, the web based admin interface seemed buggy, clicking on the main sectional nav links didn’t spin the throbber in my browser, and sometimes the interface I selected simply didn’t come up. One last complaint, the documentation through the web based admin interface wasn’t very good. One of those classic cases where the person who wrote the docs didn’t have good english skills.

Overall Netgear has a useful little device here if they work out the connection problems. The device had strong signal from various parts of my house, it connected to my WPS router with zero effort, and it had the security features I wanted. However getting a pc, tablet, or xbox connected to it should “just work”. It didn’t, and the support docs and support web site were of little help.

Update – I managed to get this working by performing a system reset. Basically, plug the device in, wait for green lights, then hit the device reset button using a paperclip. I then went through the same process of getting it connected to my router using WPS. After which I was able to connect via a Windows 7 laptop and the XBox 360. (However, I received a warning from the xbox about NAT issues which concerns me. Does this device have issues with UPnP?) Also, the xbox test connection process was very slow. I’ll run with this for a bit and see how things go. If the connection speeds are bad or I have issues with games, I’ll likely still ditch the unit. Linksys sells a similar model, I might try that product out if the Netgear extender totally fails to impress.

Update 2 – More connection problems, this time with an android tablet. The tablet connects and attempts to get an IP address which it seems to accomplish, but then it immediately loses the address, and attempts again. This cycle goes on continually. With all the issues I’ve had, I think in the end this device is going to be a waste of money. I am not impressed.

I did figure out the virtual mac address thing – the device maps a virtual address to the address of a device connected to it. If you use mac address filtering you’ll need to set up filters for both addresses on your router and the device itself. Kind of a pain really, since you have to maintain two lists. For devices connected to the extender, you’ll need to add the device address and then add the virtual address to your router. If you want to be able to connect to both access points simply add both addresses to both lists.

PRO:
1) easy router set up
2) mac address filtering and encryption

CON:
1) major issues with getting clients connected
2) Mysterious NAT warning on the xbox
3) Android connection cycling
4) buggy web based administration interface
5) crummy web site support

Greece again

Greece’s prime minister abandoned his explosive plan to put a European rescue deal to popular vote Thursday, keeping his government alive — but passionate squabbling in Athens left the country’s solvency in doubt and the eurozone in turmoil.

Papandreou sparked a global crisis Monday when he announced he would put the latest European deal to cut Greece’s massive debts — a hard-fought accord that took months of negotiations — to a referendum. The idea horrified other EU nations, Greece’s creditors and financial markets as investors fretted over the prospect of Greece being forced into a disorderly default.

Link

Reminds me of our twice over TARP vote. So much for democracy, the moneyed interests win again, maybe..

Greece

The political troubles of Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou mounted on Thursday after his finance minister publicly opposed a plan to tie a referendum to the nation’s membership in the euro zone.

“Greece’s position within the euro area is a historic conquest of the country that cannot be put in doubt … [and this] cannot depend on a referendum,“ said Evangelos Venizelos, Greek finance minister and deputy prime minister, in an early-morning statement issued following his return to Athens from Cannes, France.

Analysts at Danske Bank noted that Papandreou is rapidly losing support, which may open the door for a unity government.

“A unity government passing the austerity package as well as general elections seem plausible outcomes,” they said. ”Both scenarios imply that no referendum will take place.”

Shouldn’t the people of Greece have a say in this? Apparently not, according to some.

The Incandescent Light Bulb Freedom Act

The Incandescent Light Bulb Freedom Act, which unanimously passed South Carolina’s Senate panel, would allow South Carolina manufacturers to continue to sell incandescent bulbs so long as they have “Made in South Carolina” on them and are sold only within the state.

link

There are certain things about southern, conservative states you just have to love. Of course there’s no guarantee legislation like this will keep the old incandescent around for you to enjoy, but you can stock up now while they are still legal. (Did I really just type that? In the freedom, individual rights loving U.S. of A.? Yeah, I did.) Hardware stores regularly have overstock sales on Amazon where they sell off incandescents in bulk, usually by the box which contain anywhere between 24-48 bulbs per, usually in 2 or 4-pack cartridges. Depending on the deal you find, the cost per pack can average between 50 cents to around $1.50. (The smaller, lower wattage bulbs tend to be more expensive.) It’s really not that expensive when you total it up as the number of bulbs you’ll need is actually pretty small.

I started a light bulb burn-out survey a couple of years ago and from that calculated generally how many bulbs I’d need to supply my house for 1.5 times my life expectancy. First I took a survey of every light bulb in my house, plopped that into Excel, then tracked how often each burned out. From that I was able to calculate an average life expectancy for each wattage. (Note, lights that turn on and off again burn out in about six to twelve months, those that don’t last around two to three years. The average for your house per wattage is what you want to know.) Then I started shopping. The total cost after purchasing a full 1.5 life expectancy supply? About $900.00. It took about six months to buy a complete set since finding the best deals took time. My personal choices for bulbs were the GE Long Life or GE Double Long Life bulbs. (I’m also planning on adding to my horde in case I decide to move.) After all this, I’m happy to say I’ll never have to buy another expensive light bulb off a store shelf and the feds will not be allowed to destroy the lighting quality in my house. Win, and Big Win!

If you plan to do this, make sure and buy the right thing, bulbs have an id that identifies the wattage and base size –

A19 Std 100W (standard)
A19 Std 75W
A19 Std 60W
A19 Std 40W
A19 Std 25W
A15 Short 15W (bathroom fixture)

Also, remember that not all bulbs will be illegalized by the federal government at the same time, the more common bulbs will go first, the smaller wattages will go later. The Wikipedia article has the details. Happy shopping!