Horizon Group Management

This statement by Horizon Realty raises serious questions regarding ethical use of the law-courts to settle disputes

“We’re a ‘sue first, ask questions later’ sort of organization,” said Jeffrey Michael of Horizon Group Management is statement regarding the matter that appears in the Chicago Sun-Times.

via Horizon Group Sues Woman Over Single Tweet on Twitter – Associated Content.

This reminds me of an earlier controversy regarding Dozier Internet Law — one almost lost to google do to extensive astroturfing.

Obama and Constitutionalism

Today I had a fascinating twitter conversation with Curtis Gale Weeks, concerning his canceling of visas belonging to members of the Constitutional Government of Honduras. An appropriate headline might be “US begins to demand that Hondurans with US visas swear loyalty to Zelaya”

Obama’s action to overturn the Constitution of Honduras and install a Chavez client in that country are inexplicable. Not only is Chavez an enemy to the United States, the benefits of Constitutionalism (as opposed to the pink tide) are well known.

Obama’s hostility to the government of Honduras is especially regrettable considering Bush’s wiser foreign policy. For instance, while Bush was disappointed when Spain withdrew from the Multinational Forces in Iraq, he did not denounce King Carlos II as an illegitimate head of state. In contrast, Obama has denounced the current President of Honduras as illegitimate.

While Secretary of State Clinton appears to be trying to salvage our position, the simplest answer is that Obama is paying attention to Honduras few a few minutes each day, and uses that time to decide stupidly.

Of course, the United States should not blindly constrain its foreign policy to the Constitutions of foreign lands. But at the same time, attempting to overturn the Constitutions of friendly governments in an effort to install clients of our enemies is extremely reckless.

Obama’s behavior in this episode once again makes me pine for a President McCain, or a President Clinton.

Short Review of “Probability 1” by Amir Aczel

On Sunday I quickly read Probability 1 by Amir Aczel. While the book is a solid introduction to basic space-related information that anyone who has watched the Discovery Channel in the past fifteen years already knows, the ending chapters of the book are the crux of Dr. Aczel’s argument. In brief, he argues that because the existence of life on any given planet is independent of the probability of life on any other given planet, then the probability of intelligent life on another planet is

1 – Probability of Life Not on Any Given Planet ^ # of Planets

Because any fraction taken by itself enough approaches zero, this means the probability of intelligent life approaches one. Therefore, there is intelligent life elsewhere in the universe (and, for that matter, probably the galaxy)

However, Dr. Aczel’s argument is easily disposed of, because the trials are not independent. Indeed, there may not be intelligent life on many planets for the same reason. Analogously, imagine you determine the probability of a driver pulling over at any given minute, and from there attempt to determine the number of individuals who have driven from Nebraska to Pitcarin Island. Statistical slight of hand may along the line of Amir Aczel’s may arrive at any number of answers, with a 100% probability that at least one individual has driven that long. Of course, the trials are not independent in such an example: all drivers would be frustrated by the lack of a bridge across the Pacific.

Pass on this book. Read The Island of Lost Maps or Beijinger in New York instead.