Folded metal box
Raspberry Pi Home Automation
Custom Discovery Roof Rack
August, 2012 - Sierra Backpacking
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Convict Creek Trail
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August 7th, 2011 - Kelso Dunes
August 5th, 2011 - Lundy Canyon Hike
August 2011, Mammoth Archery
Birds in the garden
June 4th, 2011 - San Gorgonio
May 29th, 2011 - Sequoia National Forest
April 23rd, 2011 - Living Desert
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February 13th, 2011 - Iron Smelt
November 13th, 2010 - Mojave
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September, 2010 - Duck Lake Trail Backpacking
Iron bloom forging
August 28th, 2010 - Mt. San Jacinto
OSM Import: US Designated Wilderness
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Bloomery furnace iron smelting
Open Street Map: Mojave Project
June 13th, 2010 - Mojave
June 6th, 2010 - El Cajon Trails
Wolf Mountain Sanctuary
March 28th, 2010 - Salton Sea
March 21st, 2010 - South Main Divide
March 13th, 2010 - Anza Borrego Wildflowers
March 7th, 2010 - CSULB Japanese Garden
February 2010 - Mammoth
Dakota and Asha Celebrate Christmas, 2009
November 21st, 2009 - Mojave Road
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Exploring The East Mojave: The Afton Canyon Area
Broken flex plate
Remote Image Serving
Astro/night photography in Inyo National Forest
Wild Mustang Sightings
September 26th, 2009 - Night Photography In Frazier Park
August 15th, 2009 - Catalina dive trip
January 24th, 2009 - Mojave Exploration
July 2008 Mammoth Vacation
President Barack Obama!
April 12th, 2008 - Wildflowers and Landmarks
My Grandfather's Alfa Romeo Spider
March 8th, 2008 - Carrizo Plain
Bridge To Nowhere
October 20th, 2007 - Big Bear Camping
October 22nd, 2007 - Fire
Scottish Highlands, Aug 7th, 2006
Scottish Highlands, Aug 6th, 2006
August 5th, 2007 - Duck Lake Trail
May 26th, 2007 - Kelso Dunes
Culloden Battlefield, Aug 5th, 2006
May 20th, 2006 - Irwindale Renaissance Faire
Edinburgh, Aug 4th, 2006
The Clifs of Moher, Aug 3rd, 2006
The Burren, Aug 2nd, 2006
Bunratty Castle, Aug 1st, 2006
May 5th, 2007 - Mojave
Truck Audio/Data Network
2007 - Master Bath Remodel
The Ring of Kerry, Jul 31st, 2006
Victory in 2006!
Blarney and Killarney, Jul 30th, 2006
Dublin and Cork, Jul 29th, 2006
Dublin, Jul 27th & 28th, 2006
What Can I Do?
April 30th, 2006 - Anza Borrego
New desktop: Intel 805 D
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Whiting Ranch Hiking
Digital Photography with Linux
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Hiking and Photography
July 30th, 2005 - Tucker Wildlife Sanctuary
Death, Fright and Photography
May 14th, 2005 - Red Rock
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Count Every Vote Act of 2005
Linear Logic ScanGuage
November 6, 2004 - Mojave
Super Tuesday, 2004
Canon A80 Camera
Jul 25, 2004 - Death Valley
May 4th, 2004
Landscaping - My Front Slope
Stump Pullin' Yeeee Haw!
Feb 22nd, 2004
Feb 16th, 2004
PostgreSQL Logfile Analysis
Mountains? Desert? Jan 30th, 2004
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Ceiling Cargo Basket
Front Bumper Version 2
Land Rover Valve Jobs
The Matrix: Revolutions
Greg Davis CDL Linkage
Mom's Turkey Gravy
Julian Pie Company
The KB1DIG 2-meter Halo Antenna
Gardening is hard!
Aug 13th, 2003
SQL and Perl
Jul 9th, 2003
Jun 17th, 2003
Some People's Comments
Dakota is a silly dog
The Matrix: Reloaded
Chris' Stage Bottle Harness
April 23rd, 2003
DVD Burning Under Linux
My Satellite Phone
My Near-Death Experience
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Front Bumper, Version 2
KPC 3 Plus and HTX-252
Moving, moving moving...
New new house
In Truck Dr. Pepper
My Favorite Toilet
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George W. Bush
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Sawdust Bellydancing 2002
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My Custom Front Bumper
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Jedi Group, my T1 and money
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My Custom Rear Bumper
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PHP/PostgreSQL String Quoting
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240 Watt CO2 Laser Cannon
The Tulsa Rib Company
The quality of hard disks these days
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erikburrows.com source code
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Star Wars Sucks!
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Land Rover Mileage
Insomnia, Robin goes evil.
100 Watt Diode Laser Test Firing 1
2001: A Space Odyssey
TDI Deco Class
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My Truck Batteries
The Zope Bible
100 Watt Diode Laser
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Hunter the Kitty
Matts Desert Pics
|Democracy -   2003/10/08||Viewed 81 times this month, last update: 2004/04/16|
|Democracy is a wonderful thing, tricky to implement, but when done right, the effect is that in general, the will of the people is done.|
We've made some tricky decisions in implementing our democratic system,
mostly in relation our adoption of a representative democracy. However, thus far, our senators, congressmen, electoral college members, and others elected to represent the wishes of the people have done a fair job representing us.
So, as democracies go, ours, here in the USA is a fairly good one.
The problem arising of late, is that while our democratic system is working, by executing on the wishes of the people, the people are wishing for the wrong things.
To be blunt: The utter stupidity of the general population of this country has trickled up the chain of power to those people holding guns, writing laws, and pushing buttons.
It's unbelievable to me that more than half of my fellow Californians would elect the "Terminator" to the governor's office. It's unbelievable to me that enough of my fellow Americans would vote for a slow, uneducated, racist, failed businessman to the office of President. It's our fault that the economy is in the toilet. It's our fault that the middle east hates us more then ever. It's our fault the UN is ineffective. Everything Arnie does in office will be our fault.
Jeff (2003-11-12): Ummm... just a thing i noticed in what you've said, i agree almost entirely except the UN part, the United Nations is an INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATION, americans dont seem to think so.
Erik (2003-11-12): It certainly is, but I think you would agree that the UN is greatly, perhaps overly, influenced by the US, and our representatives to the UN have done a great deal to make it ineffective and internally combative.
Kindigulous (2003-11-13): The United States is not a Democracy--it is a Republic. The "general population" was spared a true democracy because the elect felt we couldn't handle it. Maybe so. But it's not the elect I'm worried about--it's unchecked corporate power!
Erik (2003-11-15): Is a Republic not the same as a Representative Democracy? What the founders of this country were thinking is up for debate, but my understanding was that a Representative Democracy was chosen for practicality. The citizens could hardly be expected to live full lives if they were needed to vote as often as the members of the senate and house do.I know you, and a great many other people are worried about powerful corporations, but you're thinking too narrowly in my opinion. Corporations are no more evil (or good) than a mom-and-pop operation, or a single person alone. Look at the current white house. They're using corporations like Halliburton to execute their agenda, but that doesn't make Halliburton evil, just George, Cheney, et al. Corporations are just pieces of paper. People, and their self-centeredness and greed are what you have to worry about.
Des (2003-12-09): Hi, I have browsed your site a bit and enjoyed some of the various musings on coding, politics, hiking, and the like. On the subject of democracy, I really encourage you to check out the presidential campaign of Howard Dean: http://www.deanforamerica.com
I totally sympathize with your frustration about the catastrophes of the last three years, but we have to keep hoping that there is some shred of redeemable virtue in this country and its people, and that if we give ordinary people a reason to believe in politics again, they might even overcome their ignorances and prejudices.
RedBeard (2003-12-21): Actually, a representative democracy is not necessarily a republic. In the case of the United States, the individual states themselves are representative democracies while the nation as a whole was a republic until passage of the 17th Amendment in 1913. Up until then, Senators were elected by the legislative bodies of their respective states. If the people of a state weren't satisfied with their representation in the Senate, their recourse was to vote for change in their state legislature.
Since the Senate has become a body elected by popular vote, campaign financing has become vitally important to them, since they must convince millions of the "unwashed masses" to vote for them, rather than having to convince a couple hundred people who tend to have better than average education, more familiarity with the law, and a broader view of current issues in relation to the state's interests. Whereas the Senate was intended to be the "upper crust" of the federal legislature, it has degenerated into a house of bottom-feeders who sell legislation to the highest bidder and gobble up campaign contributions and "gifts" from special-interest lobbyists like a kid in a candy store. Because their campaigns must reach the voters of an entire state rather than a single congressional district, their appetite for these campaign finance dollars is far greater.
Another effect of the 17th Amendment has been the erosion of public interest in their state governments and a general apathy toward the same. How many people can you name who actually voted the last time there was an election for state legislators? Personally, I can think of only one. I see him in the mirror every morning when I shave and brush my teeth. Democracies and republics can function well only when the people participate.
You're right. The United States is no longer a republic. This is not, however, good for the nation, the states, the people, or the planet.
THE MAN (2006-06-12): I think your right and all but we are the world power and we do make alot of influences on the UN but thats international we dont control it enough to ruin it it is just as effective as it needs to be (yes i no this is 3 years late :P)