Providing blogs and email for Slaughter family members.

Crash Different

This is just too rich: Apple - Crash Different

Signing Credit Card Reciepts

This article is simply hilarious: The Credit Card Prank

Kevin Cooper

I was listening to Stacy Taylor on KOGO one evening, and the topic of Kevin Cooper was up for discussion. Stacy, who'm I'd previously considered very well informed, rational, reasonable and intelligent was on a tirade about this "scum bag". He went on about how quickly Kevin should be "fried" and how "worthless" a human being he was. You get the idea. At the time I listened, my heart pounded at the horror of the crime and a personal desire to see the perpetrator suffer a prompt and horrific death. Hell yeah, you go, Stacy!

Several days later I did a search on "Kevin Cooper". I expected to see the normal ACLU rants and NAACP propoganda that goes along with any death penalty case in which a black or hispanic is involved. I expected results leading me to Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson.

But that's not what I found. I found articles outlining various purported facts about the case. Now I'm not vouching for the credibility of any of these sources, but as I read the same exact information coming from various sources, I began to consider the possibility that these "facts" may indeed be factual.

But the facts I'm talking about are nearly impossible to comprehend. You can't believe both this set of facts and the fact that Kevin is still on death row at the same time. My psychology professor called this "cognitive dissonance" - when you come to believe in two facts or ideas that can't possibly both be true at the same time. For example, if you grew up being told that all apples were red and then one day were given an apple that was green, you would have to make a decision: either this green apple was not an apple; or, what you were originally taught was wrong. Most folks will decide that a green apple is, in fact, not an apple, unable to abandon long held beliefs.

Likewise, I (and probably others) cannot believe that police and lawyers and jurors and judges could ever allow an obviously innocent man to go to the gas chamber. So we disregard any and all evidence to the contrary because it must be wrong.

Personally, I usually find it easy to abandon things that I've long held true if someone presents me with a "green apple". And as I read more and more about this case, I began to question more and more the integrity of the conviction.

If even a handful of the claims I'm referring to are true, Kevin Cooper is not "guilty beyond a reasonable doubt" even by Bill Clinton's dictionary.

I have been a strong believer in the death penalty. But I've realized that this belief has a major flaw: my presumption that everyone on death row is guilty. There have been some awesome stories of death row inmates being cleared by DNA and other evidence. It is proven that inmates on death row are not always guilty. And is it worth risking the life of one innocent man to kill 1 truly guilty man? No? How many guilty men would it take to justify the taking of a single innocent life. I can't answer that. There is no correct answer to that question. Would you die so that 1 guilty man would be put to death?

Well, I can't support the death penalty after the results of my latest thinking on the topic. And I would consider it unconscionable to put to death Kevin Cooper given the overwhelming amount of doubt in his case.

I won't go in to all of these various "doubts" here. Instead, I'd suggest you'd read this this summary of the case or any of the countless websites dedicated to freeing Kevin Cooper.

And as far as Stacy Taylor goes? He's lost all my respect. He is just another ranting talk show host who pretends to work with facts but in reality simply excretes his personal biases. Shame on you Stacy.

I'd appreciate it if you'd post a comment here after reading some of these articles. I'd like to know if others have the same reaction to this situation that I did.

Potential Devastation for IE

A newly found flaw in Microsoft's Internet Explorer could have devastating effects.

This new flaw makes every link on the Internet a potential source of infection for unsuspecting Winblows users. While I'm always happy to see aspects of Microsoft's inferiority revealed, I'm not looking forward to the impact this new flaw may have.

Depending on how wary a user is of downloads of common filetypes (such as .pdf or .doc) might be, this new flaw could allow a malicious programmer to seed any number of computers with a program that does anything he wants. This is an entirely new breed of vulnerability.

Traditionally, computer users could rely on "smarts" to prevent trouble. Users have been trained not to open unexpected or otherwise suspicious email attachments. But now all a user has to do is click on a link. If a user clicks on a "known" file type (.pdf, .doc, .xls), this new flaw would allow a perp to sneak itself on to the users drive as a known file type but then actually execute anything the miscreant author desires.

This is bad. This is not good. This could very well be a boon for Linux and other real OSs that are smarter than to fall for this type of thing.

I don't want to see unsuspecting users falling victim, but then, the sooner we can evolve to an OS other than MS Win!DOH!s, the better off our world will be.

Harry Slaughter

My Harley has been replaced

I'm done with Harley. No more!

Today I bought a brand new Yamaha Road Star Warrior.

This thing is twice the bike my Sportster ever was, and it cost less. I'm over my "Harley" period. This bike is absolutely everything a Harley should be and isn't. Superior handling, braking and power; classic V-twin, push-rod, air-cooled motor with just a touch of contemporary technology (in the form of fuel injection). Race bike (R1) inspired brakes and suspension, aluminum frame, and modified version of the standard Road Star motor. This is one hell of a bike.

It cruises Main Street at 2000 RPMS with a menacing growel. On the highway, you can ride it in 5th gear at almost any RPM and still rely on plenty of power. The clutch is very forgiving; the brakes will do emergency stops with a single finger (note Sportster owners: no brake pumping required).

Harleys are basically 1950's technology with a 2010 price tag.

This is the bike Harley would have created hadn't they locked themselves and their technology into the 1950's.

If you are considering anything in the Harley line-up, you would be wise to ride this inexpensive bike first. Save your money and smoke your local Harleys. Get yourself a Yamaha Road Star Warrior.

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