Saturday, April 03, 2004

Thomas Sowell for President
I'd vote for him, but he's right - he'd never win. Not with this platform. I find his idea that there should be a one-term limit for elected offices appealing. I'm not so sure about paying politicians so much, one term or not.
My expert opinion: the international space station is haunted.
Wallpaper of the Masochist
How'd you like to stare at this all day?

The photo and quote of Kerry's 1971 testimony before the Senate Committee of Foreign Relations is interesting, though. They didn't pick the one that's most indicative of his feelings toward Vietnam vets at the time. Here's what they chose:
"How do you ask a man to be the last man to die in Vietnam? How do you ask a man to die for a mistake?"
Here's what they should have chosen:
I would like to talk on behalf of all those veterans and say that several months ago in Detroit we had an investigation at which over 150 honorably discharged, and many very highly decorated, veterans testified to war crimes committed in Southeast Asia. These were not isolated incidents but crimes committed on a day-to-day basis with the full awareness of officers at all levels of command. It is impossible to describe to you exactly what did happen in Detroit - the emotions in the room and the feelings of the men who were reliving their experiences in Vietnam. They relived the absolute horror of what this country, in a sense, made them do.

They told stories that at times they had personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Ghengis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam in addition to the normal ravage of war and the normal and very particular ravaging which is done by the applied bombing power of this country.
The EU's Inconsistent; What Else is New?
The EU is set to "discipline" the Netherlands and Italy for breaking the Stability and Growth Pact, which limits the ability of governments in the EU to, among other things, run deficits.

What's fun about this is that France has regularly ignored this pact, playing whatever games they want to with their budgetary policy. Germany, too, has a similar track record, though not as brazen as France's. Neither of them has had any form of disciplinary action taken against them by the EU Commission.

Smaller countries in the EU should take note.
Many would argue this saves a lot of time, since that's where telemarketers belong, anyway.

I'm leery, though. If I found out a company I was working with was doing this, I'd either complain or stop using their services. As the man says at the bottom of the story, what prevents these people from abusing the information they gather? A fervent adherence to the law?
Does This Qualify as Irony?

Thursday, April 01, 2004

Rodney, I'm still not certain what your definition of ego is. Is it another term for the self, or is it something else?
I hate M$ and that stinkin' Bill Gates
Sorry, but I've installed Linux on an old machine at home for the first time, and isn't that how Linux users are supposed to talk? I've never really used Linux before, just thought I'd take a look for fun - broaden my horizons a little bit. I had a problem getting the network card to work, but thanks to help from a little Googleing, I got that worked out and everything's working fine. I have to say, for a product of a bunch of people who hate Microsoft, it sure is a lot like Windows. And the OpenOffice applications sure look a lot like Microsoft Office. And for all the complaining I've heard about what's packaged with Windows, they sure do give you a ton of free software with this OS. Hmmmm....

One interesting thing is the interface used for posting to the blog is different in this web browser (Konqueror is its name). The buttons are in different places and some other things are different or just plain missing. That's probably Microsoft's fault, too.
A Typical Ploy from Statists Everywhere
Joe, did you notice this particular item in your quote from Morning Sedition?
... Keep us on as you make your way to that charmingly decorated cubicle where you help rich people increase the disparity between their bank account and yours.
The language specifically attempts to arouse an envious response in the reader. It is the same rhetoric that created the welfare state and is corrupting the minds of Americans everywhere.

And David, to me, this represents that "ominous trend" of which I referred to earlier. It is the "underlying current" that feeds this cycle of violence we see in the world. I see what appears to be a marked rise, in Americans, of what was once referred to as the "seven deadly sins." You asked me what should we do about it? Well I suppose a start would be: first, recognizing the problem - the "sin" - and second, recognizing its source - the ego (or "Satan" if you're in the bible belt).
Air America Radio: With More News and Les Nesman
As a helpful service to you, dear reader, I have checked out Air America Radio's website. These are the fun people who bring us the new Al Franken show, as well as one hosted by Janeane Garofalo.

Looking over the listings they give for their shows, Franken's seems particulary dumb.
"After debunking right-wing propaganda in his bestselling books Lies, and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them and Rush Limbaugh is a Big Fat Idiot, Al Franken is taking the fight to America's airwaves--and he's doing it drug-free. With his co-host, veteran radio personality Katherine Lanpher, Franken will deliver three hours a day of fearlessly irreverent commentary, comedy, and interviews. Franken and Lanpher have a mean streak a smile wide. The O'Franken Factor will energize fans, infuriate liars, and deliver the truth--in what Al Franken likes to call the Zero Spin Zone."
It doesn't speak much about his abilities or his potential when he's completely defined his show around Bill O'Reilly. Franken is supposed to be creative and original. This doesn't support that theory.

Not to be out done, the morning show, Morning Sedition, bills themsleves this way:
"Time to wake up, brush your teeth and stick it to The Man. Set your alarm to Morning Sedition and keep us on as you make your way to that charmingly decorated cubicle where you help rich people increase the disparity between their bank account and yours. We’ll give you the day’s headlines and political news, without that annoying, smiley, blow-dried double-talk the other media use to avoid offending anyone who might jeopardize their access to Sweet Lady Ad Revenues. Join radio veteran Mark Riley, journalist Sue Ellicott and comedian Marc Maron for morning news served up the way you like it: In context, with a healthy dollop of absurdity on top and a side order of subversion."
I am The Man. Stick it to me.

Is this how liberals like starting the day? "Look, you're being oppressed at every turn, and life is being sucked out of you at every moment by people who would be happy to crush you into paste." It's turning me into morning person already.

Rush Limbaugh has an excellent point about liberal radio: Who in the world would want to listen to it? It's so negative and filled with vile, mean, soul-crushing self-importance. Who wants to listen to that hour after hour after hour?
A Clintonite Complains about Politics?
Sidney Blumenthal is grousing in the Guardian today about the nature of politics in the Bush White House. A Clintonite complaining that the White House is engaging in political mud-slinging? That has to be an April Fool's joke.

Anyway, he lets loose the same tired blather that others having been invoking for a while now. There's nothing original here, except that it's coming from an ironic source.
"The former ambassador Joseph Wilson, who, at the administration's behest, looked into the claim that Saddam was seeking uranium in Niger and concluded it was bogus, was subjected to a sustained attack that included outing the identity of his wife, a covert CIA operative."
First, Joseph Wilson's "intelligence gathering" mission was a pool side tea sipping exercise with people who calmly reassured Wilson that, no, Niger wasn't working with Iraq. That's effective intelligence.

Second, Wilson's wife, Valerie Plame, isn't an undercover CIA operative. She never was. She was an analyst, but she wasn't "deep cover" or anything along those lines. Nobody was "outed" by the White House.
"Paul O'Neill, a former secretary of the treasury, had revealed that an invasion of Iraq was being pushed from the earliest days of the administration, and he instantly became the target for personal vituperation."
Paul O'Neill has done so much backpeddling since the book was published that he's I'm not sure he has a position on the White House. Look, O'Neill's situation is very simple: He's a former corporate CEO, used to being in charge and used to having the most influence in a situation. He arrives in the White House and finds that, on some issues, he's one of many equal voices, and in others, one of the least important. Does the Treasury Secretary really need to have that much say over White House anti-terror policy?

Anyway, check it out and sigh along with Blumenthal, revealer of Henry Hyde's affair, co-discoverer of the "vast right-wing conspiracy," and general Clintonite hack.
Aristide Discovers Chutzpah
He's suing unnamed defendants in response to his "abduction" from Haiti by U.S. forces. This man is lucky to be alive. Does he think the insurgents that were surrounding his palace were merely there to have tea? Anyway, he's trying to claim that his resignation from office was unconstitutional, because he was forced to do so by an armed contingent of U.S. soldiers.

Now, let's remember, Aristide was, at one time, a democratically elected leader (as so many Dems have reminded us), but that changed. Aristide suspended elections, is known to be amazingly corrupt, and has been hanging on to power in complete disregard to the constitution of Haiti. And he's complaining about something being unconstitutional?
Liberal Blather Radio is on the Air!
Al Franken's show debuted yesterday. Not having a satellite radio, and not living within the broadcast range of any of the five (oooh, scary) stations that carry it, I haven't heard a word of it. And that really doesn't bother me.
"Air America Radio, which launched Wednesday, is being billed as a liberal alternative to conservative talk radio and has former 'Saturday Night Live' personality Al Franken as its most famous headliner."
I thought NPR was the liberal alternative to conservative talk radio.

No matter. This will likely crash and burn, anyway. These shows have been tried, and they fail. Reason? They're not radio people. Mario Cuomo had a talk show for awhile (no, I'm not kidding). It died quickly. Cuomo's a smart guy, but he's not a radio man. Franken is (supposedly) a smart man, but he's not a radio person, either.

Fun note at the bottom of the article: Al Gore and Jesse Jackson are in talks with Clear Channel to have their own show. Jackson may well be fun, at least briefly and as an oddity. Gore will bore everyone to death within in two minutes of start time.
This had better be an April Fool's gag.

Wednesday, March 31, 2004

Nice ad
Apparently this pro-Bush ad was not done by the Bush campaign.
It's not April Fool's yet
It's no joke, Rodney. Parabola is one of my favorite songs on the album. I don't think you'd care for the music much - a little head-bangy - but I thought you'd find the lyrics appealing. It is a little unusual for Tool. They tend to be a lot angrier. It ain't music for the whole family.

I understand Tool's drummer is from Paola, Kansas. Kinda makes you believe any kid from a small town can make it big. Next up: The Joe Anderson Trio! Or, if you want a cooler, mysterious-sounding name, Faceless Corporate Monolith!
Reason's dream candidate.
Give Me a Pinch!
Gee, I feel that if I say yes - the lyrics make sense - you'll sneak up behind me tomorrow and pinch me just for kicks. OMG. Tomorrow is April 1! Two weeks until tax deadline day. This better not portend a cruel April fool's joke.
A Step
The Palestinian Authority Prime Minister, Ahmed Qorei, denounced suicide attacks in a recent speech before the PA parliament. This is a positive step.

Now, I'm not holding my breath, thinking that this is a milestone in the end of Palestinian terror. I'll wait and see what this actually means. Given the cozy relationship between the PA and the terrorist camps that reside there (and the fact that Arafat is, despite the current rhetoric, a terrorist), the PA can do more than just hand out lame admonishments. It would be interesting to know what Qorei is saying in private (the PA being notorious for saying one thing to the Western world, then something else to the Arab audience).
Horrifying news from Fallujah. The fact that rebels are still attacking U.S. soldiers and civilian contractors doesn't surprise me. I'm not like the members of the press who naively believed that when Bush said the war was over, that meant all fighting had stopped.

What's particularly shocking about this attack is that the mob dragged the bodies around the city and then hung the corpses from a bridge. References to Black Hawk Down are already being made.

What does it say about a culture where doing this to a corpse is considered fun? When was the last time you saw an American soldier drag a bunch of terrorists through the streets?
"The Internet means freedom"
I was in a discussion a few months ago with some who believed that advances in technology will make it easier for governments to become more oppressive. I understand the concerns there. Certainly some forms of technology will make Big Brother-ism easier to accomplish. On the other hand, I argued that other forms of technology, particularly the Internet, will lead to more freedom as more and more un-stifled voices become heard, as real news about what's really going on becomes available.

This falls in nicely with my premise:
No one says the Internet is going to rebuild the world overnight -- especially in countries where technology and connectivity and openness exist in inverse proportion to oppression. Repressive regimes will try to block the Internet just as they try to block news from getting in or out and just as they try to block all other media and communication. But the Internet can spread news and connect people and let the world watch tyranny and organize protest and resist repression like no other medium before.

The Internet is subversive.
Right on.
If Anyone's Penalizing Microsoft, It's Us
So says the U.S. government, albeit not as directly as that, to Europe in response to their recent assesment of a $600 million fine against Microsoft.
Get a Raise, Decrease Your Pay
One of the most basic tenets of economics is that as productivity rises, wages may also increase. An increase in the latter, without the former, leads to problems. The living wage is one of those (supposedly) well-meaning ideas that separates the two. The unspoken notion behind the living wage is that all employers secretly want to gouge their employees and force them to eat dirt. But, by passing a law, we can make everyone earn a lot of money. Good for us. Problem is, of course, that it breaks that fundamental law of economics.

San Fransico may find this out the hard way. In an effort to make politicians feel better about themselves, they've raised the hourly wage from $6.75 to $8.50 an hour -- a $1.75 per hour increase. Businesses that rely on hourly employees are likely to lay off large numbers of them to save money. Some may simply close down.

What's fun about living wage concepts (and is usually ignored by its supporters) is that the living wage only hurts small businesses. These are usually shops on the fringe of success, still clinging on to viability. Wage increases made via goverment fiat force these people out of operation. Large, conglomorate style corporations are the only ones that can compete. So, by aggressively increasing the living wage, mom and pops will be more likely to close, and that homey little neighborhood shop might be replaced by the faceless corporate monolith that these very same agitators despise.
Admiral Deflooptypoo Goes Down
Dominique de Villepin is being replaced as French foreign minister. Huzzah!
Pain is an illusion
Hey Rodney, I realize no rock song is going to perfectly reflect your philosophy (or anyone's for that matter), but I can't help but wonder what you would think of Tool's Parabola. I was listening to it on the way to work this morning:
We barely remember who or what came before this precious moment,
We are Choosing to be here right now. Hold on, stay inside...
This holy reality, this holy experience. Choosing to be here in...

This body. This body holding me. Be my reminder here that I am not alone in
This body, this body holding me, feeling eternal all this pain is an illusion.


This holy reality, in this holy experience. Choosing to be here in...

This body. This body holding me. Be my reminder here that I am not alone in
This body, this body holding me, feeling eternal all this pain is an illusion...
Of what it means to be alive

Swirling round with this familiar parable.
Spinning, weaving round each new experience.
Recognize this as a holy gift and celebrate this
chance to be alive and breathing
chance to be alive and breathing.

This body holding me reminds me of my own mortality.
Embrace this moment. Remember. we are eternal.
all this pain is an illusion.
Joe, of course you will ever be associated in my mind with Die Eier von Satan, and not for the reasons I'm sure most people looking at that title for the first time would think. Have you told our parents how those years of studying German have paid off?

Tuesday, March 30, 2004

The fall of President Palmer
On 24 tonight, President Palmer, for the first time I can recall, did a dishonorable thing. I liked his character because he always took the high road. Now to say I'm disappointed is an understatement. He'll probably resign over his guilt during the last episode. Either that or finally pop and kill Sherry himself. Yes, I know it's just a TV show.

Also, I thought "Alright, there's only nine episodes left and it takes fourteen hours for symptoms to set in, so at least I won't have to watch these diseased people suffer and die. Heck, it probably means Michelle will be going out in a blaze of glory. That'd be cool." So much for that.
No, no! A thousand times no!
The NFL is moving in the wrong direction on instant replay challenges. They should be eliminating the stupid exercise altogether, but instead they are expanding it. Argh!

People make mistakes, including referees. It's part of the game. These instant replay shenanigans not only take away a human aspect of the game, but it adds unnecessary delays as well. I hate them. Get rid of them. Just play football.
We can all relax now
It was just an accident.
Sovereignty Inverted
One of the great advances of Western civilization is the notion that people are sovereign, that the government derives its powers from the consent of the governed. There's a good old civics term for this: popular sovereignty.

So, one of the more exciting debates about the proposed EU constitution is whether the people (you know, the individuals that will have to abide by all the rules and regulations laid down by Brussels) should have the power to approve said constitution. There's a debate in England right now as to whether their should be a referendum on this issue. From the article:
"Mr Howard said ministers had approved 34 referendums so far, including one for mayor of Hartlepool. 'But on this historic issue you refuse the British people a say,' he said. 'Why won't you trust the British people?'"
This appears to be a problem across Europe, too. For some reason, the EU has no concern for the people's decisions, and this is being foisted apon them from on high. Of course, this is nothing new -- this criticism has existed for quite a while -- but the recent statements from England reinforce this observation.

What is it with EU leaders that they don't trust the common man? Could it be that they're not as popular or well-loved as they like to think? In any case, millenia of political philosophy have been inverted. Europe has cast out popular sovereignty for submission to unelected, remote bureaucrats. So, what was the point of casting monarchist shackles over the last couple of centuries? They may as well resurrect the Hapsburgs.
Annan Almost Does Something
In a somewhat surprising move, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan actually disciplined UN officials who had a hand in the lax security measures taken at the Baghdad office before they were bombed by terrorists on August 19, 2003. Annan reassigned some personnel and actually asked for the resignation from the UN security coordinator, Tun Myat.

Wow. That's big doin's at the UN, where the usual response to stuff like this is, "What? No. It's in the past," and to go on like nothing's happened. Of course, there's no mention made of the fact that the U.S. repeatedly warned the UN that they were open to attack, and that our offer to help guard the UN base was rebuffed because the UN didn't want to make themselves look unfriendly.

And, it's still telling that many of the people involved were simply given a stern lecture or reassigned to other portions of the UN.

But, this is all indicitive of UN arrogance. They believe that only they add moral gravitas to anything. They believe that no nation can possibly succeed without their kindly oversight. They believe that endless their discussions and junkets are infintely more valuable then direct action. They also, foolishly, as it so happens, believe that they are immune from terrorist anger. It's unfortunate that 22 people had to die for the UN to learn a painful lesson: terrorist bombs don't notice the funny blue helmet. They kill just the same.
The French Minister Shuffle
Seems the Socialists are gaining ground in France. Chirac is expected to reorganize his cabinet to reflect their growing influence. High unemployment and "painful economic reforms" are blamed for the rebuke to Chirac's government. The French are reacting to these issues in a rather European way. I mean, the problem is that France has so many nanny-state provisions, crippling labor laws and pension programs, etc, and they've been paying the price; the French economy is stagnant. What's the solution? Well, if too much government's the problem, it must also be the solution. (To paraphrase Homer Simpson's paean to alcohol: "To government, the cause of, and solution to, all of life's problems.")
I never made the claim that Iraq had a direct connection to 9/11, but I stand by the claims that Iraq and al Qaeda did in fact have links to one another. But beyond that, as I said in my last post, the war on terror is bigger than 9/11. This isn't the "War on bin Laden", as if, should this one man be captured or killed, everyone would pack up and go home because terrorism itself would suddenly cease to exist.

I, too, distrust government on many levels, particularly when it comes to nanny-state policies. But the primary responsibility of the U.S. government is to protect its citizens, and I suppose I can have a little bit of trust here because at least I can recognize this as a valid government function. You have acknowledged that the war is working, that it has "severely disrupted the ability of terrorist organizations to function and we have put the states who harbor these dangerous criminals on notice that they may be next". Don't you realize had we not done this, there would have been more attacks on the U.S. by now?

I have said repeatedly how I believe the U.S. should fight terrorism and I believe my stance is clear. You say you pray we change course. Change course to what, Rodney? What is your solution?
al Qaeda had big plans
Via InstaPundit, evidence that the war on terror has already disrupted al Qaeda plans for more attacks in the United States:
The confessions reveal that planning for the September 11 attacks started much earlier and was more elaborate than previously thought.
"The original plan was for a two-pronged attack with five targets on the East Coast of America and five on the West Coast," he told interrogators, according to the transcript.
"We talked about hitting California as it was America's richest state, and [al Qaeda leader Osama] bin Laden had talked about economic targets."
He is reported to have said that bin Laden, who like Mohammed had studied engineering, vetoed simultaneous coast-to-coast attacks, arguing that "it would be too difficult to synchronize."
Mohammed then decided to conduct two waves of attacks, hitting the East Coast first and following up with a second series of attacks.
"Osama had said the second wave should focus on the West Coast," he reportedly said.
But the terrorists seem to have been surprised by the strength of the American reaction to the September 11 attacks.

Monday, March 29, 2004

A Change in Rhetoric
For the sake of civility, can we agree that we may never know definitively whether or not there was a link between Iraq and Al-Qaeda? If in fact there really was a link, then I'll agree with you in that our government had a legal and just reason for going to war with Iraq. I would point out, however, that there are a lot of other sources that refute or cast doubt on this justification. The most damning evidence seems to be a change in tone by administration officials on the original justification for war. The one characteristic about Truth is that it doesn't change over time. Waffling and changes in the "party line," however, usually indicate some sort of deception is going on.

Have you figured this out yet about me? I deeply fear and mistrust our federal government. I don't believe that it necessarily acts in my best interest or in the best interest of the American people. It is led by humans, just like me, and we are fallible. When I see what appear to be blatant power grabs by the federal government, it only justifies my fear. When I see the further erosion of our constitutional liberties, I am mortified. Centralization of power is dangerous to individual freedom.

You know, in my last post I made mention of the innocent Iraqi civilian lives lost in the war, but let us not forget our own.
More than 570 American soldiers have been killed. More than 3,100 have been wounded, many horribly maimed by the improvised explosive devices that torment the convoys on Iraq's roads and streets.

There is perhaps one saving grace in this damned war, whether it be legal or not, and it is this: we have severely disrupted the ability of terrorist organizations to function and we have put the states who harbor these dangerous criminals on notice that they may be next.

But I pray, dear friend, that America changes course. I fervently hope that enough of us can reverse the ominous trend that carries us on to the further destruction of our rights.

Sunday, March 28, 2004

Break-up this monopoly
What? You thought I was talking about Microsoft? Though I suppose Microsoft is partly to blame, what with helping to make e-mail and instant messaging so easy.
I thought the whole country was a "free speech area"
Silliness in Iowa. Maybe the park service could argue that it's a form of littering.
The war on terror
Rodney, the fight against terrorism is a war, not a police matter. There are multiple reasons why this must be so, one of them being that terrorism itself cannot survive on an international scale without state sponsorship. This is why President Bush said we will not differentiate between terrorist organizations and the nations that harbor them. That is why we started with Afghanistan, where the link to al Qaeda was obvious, and moved to Iraq, where the connection to terrorism has also been made. Terrorist organizations will crumble when they lose state support. States that are unwilling to voluntarily cut off support for terrorism must be forced to do so.

It should be noted that in Iraq's case, Saddam Hussein was the given the opportunity to go quietly. He chose war.

But what is the alternative to war? If you will not allow the U.S. to fight proactively, then it must attempt to protect its citizens in a passive fashion, and that is impossible. There are too many targets in this country to protect - every federal building, every national monument, every sports stadium, every airport, every shopping mall, every school - literally every place is a target. How can we possible be protected in all places at all times? Oh, I suppose the government could resort to extreme Soviet-style monitoring of every man, woman and child, but of course that's a Bad Thing. We could play nice, pull all of our troops home and completely remove ourselves from the international scene, but that would be caving into the terrorists' demands. That would be a humongous sign of weakness and only embolden those who wish to destroy Western civilization. It would have the opposite of the intended effect. Ah, we can treat terrorism like a crime! But that was already tried and failed. It was the norm of the 90s, started by George H. W. Bush and continued by Clinton, to treat terrorism like a crime, and this is what it got us.

No, the only choice is to wage war on them and their supporters. Frankly, I don't think we've done enough in this area, nor have we been consistent. Why haven't we taken tougher stances against Syria and Iran? We don't necessarily have to invade. Their governments are already primed to fall. Why can't we give them a little push? Why haven't we been harder on Saudi Arabia? Why do we frown on Israel when they fight terrorism with the same zeal?

Actively fighting terrorism means war. And yes, unfortunately war means that innocent civilians will be killed. The United States does its best to avoid inflicting civilian casualties, but they still happen. These deaths are unintentional. It is neither the policy nor the practice of the United States military to intentionally target civilians.

Terrorists, on the other hand, intentionally target civilians. That's the whole point. In fact, to the terrorist, the less the targets have to do with the cause the better. A suicide bomber blows up some Israeli soldiers at a checkpoint? Ah, big deal. But blowing up a bunch of students at a pizzeria? Priceless!

Terrorism - the act of targeting civilians to make a political point - is never, ever moral, appropriate, called-for, seemly, ethical, legal, permissiblele, acceptable, or otherwise okay. It doesn't matter how legitimate this political point, on its own, may be. Once it has been partnered with terrorism, it has been invalidated. The means nullify the ends. I find the fact that you cannot see the difference upsetting.

I think some people don't realize that the fight against terrorism is bigger than 9/11. The war is not merely an act of revenge. The goal here is to prevent another 9/11, or worse, from happening ever again. This means taking the fight to the terrorists, where they live and operate, and toppling the states that support them. You, presumably, would let another attack occur, an aspect of passivity and treating terrorism like a common crime. To take this position is to say that loss of innocent American civilian lives is acceptable. Well, that is unacceptable to me.