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December 27, 2006

A Difference in Focus

I've been thinking a lot about what I get out of blogging, and about what I want to do in other parts of my life, and the combination of the two has resulted in a pretty big cutback in output here. Well, I've made some decisions.

There are a lot of political commenters in the blogosphere. A whole, whole lot. And I don't think that my voice adds enough to make a difference, since there are many people saying most of what I would say about politics and foreign affairs, better than I am capable of saying it. No doubt, I will nonetheless continue to blog about politics quite a bit, because it's an interest of mine and because sometimes I get so annoyed I just can't help but write about it. But the problem is, to do this consistently requires me to be more current with the news on an ongoing basis, and consequently more annoyed anyway, than I really care to be. I think that political blogging has made me, in some ways, a more negative person than I care to be.

On the other hand, there is not a great deal of good writing about my actual profession: enterprise IT development and integration. Yet my profession is economically critical to the US, and is becoming critical in nearly every facet of our lives. There are things I have to say, with the benefit of some 15 years of experience in IT, mostly at an enterprise level; from the point of view of having been a network and systems integrator, a database developer, a systems administrator, a people manager, a project manager, an operations architect, a development architect, a consultant on directory services and identity management, and an enterprise architect; and as someone who thinks about everything in terms of theoretical frameworks. And in my area of expertise, the things I have to say are too often unsaid.

One reason that I have been reluctant to write about my work is that I don't want to offend my clients. The lessons I have learned about good and bad IT practice, for example, have all come from employers or clients, and sometimes it is pretty easy to cross-reference a few available facts and determine which client I might be talking about. If one of my clients has terrible practices in some area, and sees me taking that practice apart, they might well be offended, and I want to ensure repeat business wherever possible. On the other hand, it's also true that much of what I have to say about enterprise IT is of generic applicability, and that many examples (both good and bad) that are specific to one company in my experience are of broader applicability outside of my direct experience.

So expect to see more blogging about IT in the future, and less blogging about politics. (In fact, I expect that most of my political commentary in the future will be in comments on others' blogs.)

Posted by jeff at 10:31 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

December 19, 2006

Among the Reasons I am Unsuited for Diplomacy

Were I the US lead negotiator at a conference such as this, where the North Koreans basically demanded that we recognize N. Korea as our equal in standing, give them all kinds of money and goodies (including a nuclear reactor and energy help in the meantime), back off our strangling of their counterfeiting (of US money) operations, and accept N. Korean nuclear weapons before they would even agree to talk to us, I'd toss their lead negotiator a Sacagawea dollar, advise he use it to get a sandwich because he's looking a little thin, and walk out. But that's just me.

Posted by jeff at 5:24 PM | TrackBack

December 18, 2006

Why Governors Can Pardon Criminals

Governors have the pardon power exactly to remedy such vast injustices as this travesty. I hope Governor Perdue exercises that power in this case.

(hat tip: Glenn Reynolds)

Posted by jeff at 6:51 PM | TrackBack

December 15, 2006


Steph put up some pictures of our decorations. Not included: the porch lights, that burned out immediately and whose fuse I haven't yet replaced.

Posted by jeff at 3:13 PM | TrackBack

December 6, 2006

And not with the Girl

I'm in lust.

Posted by jeff at 9:56 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

December 2, 2006

Things I Know

Francis Porretto neatly captured much of the reason for my decreased blogging lately: "Fulfillment is an individual matter; my fulfillment, as a writer and thinker, has been hampered by focusing on politics six days a week with a little restful mysticism on the seventh."

Actually, for me, there is another component as well. I have been convinced for years that, should we not fight the jihadis aggressively and everywhere now, then we will eventually end up in a war on the scale of WWII, probably including a genocide or two along the way, and probably the loss of an American city or two. I have tried to convince others of this, too. But I've realized, or remembered really, that there are certain inevitable historical forces that will come about.

I know that there will almost certainly be a world war soon, and that 9/11 won't be dated as the start of it. I know that millions, maybe a billion, would die in this war. I know that it would end with either the fall of the West or the destruction of the Arabs to all practical intents. I know that the barbarians have a good shot at destroying the Europe of my youth, where there is likely to be a civil war in my lifetime between the Muslims and the non-Muslims, and that they have a shot at global domination.

I know, too, that there is little I can do to avert or even mitigate this, and I am content. I am content because I believe that at the end of it all, America will still stand, and will still be the most free place on the plant. I hope we will be freer than now, and deeply hope that my sons will not have to die to bring this about.

I used to fear these things; now I simply accept them. And knowing these things, I've realized that it's much more important for me to focus on my family and my interests than on politics and current events. And that's why I haven't been blogging much.

Posted by jeff at 2:33 PM | TrackBack

My World is a Flood

So apparently, sump pump motors burn out without warning, flooding basements, fairly frequently. There's something you don't learn in Texas and Oklahoma. Needless to say, I learned this when our basement flooded this morning. Apparently it's common enough that we are on a waiting list for a commercial dehumidifier. Fortunately, at this point, it looks like we haven't lost anything of significant monetary value, and only a few things of significant emotional value. Oh, well.

Posted by jeff at 1:59 PM | TrackBack