Nov 222004

Anna, Pete, Paul, and myself hiked up Iron Mountain in Poway. It was a great hike, and a terrific view from the top. Our bodies did better than expected, as we have been slack on exercising for the past 3 weeks. We will have to try out some more local trails to get up to speed.

Anna and I tried out a lot of the gear we would be wearing and using in Peru; all of it worked quite well. If you find Smartwool stuff on sale, get it. It is heavier than poly tech stuff, but feels nice and doesn’t get stinky. I am really happy with my socks, tshirt and boxers. We both really like the Mountainsmith Ghost and Wraith packs. They are really lightweight and comfortable.

Bush says he stands for a strong dollar, but it is pretty clean that everyone else thinks the US sees a lower dollar as inevitable. It also might bring the Euros in to help negotiate with China over its yuan peg to the dollar. “The truth is that the U.S. fiscal and monetary excesses, which have been essential to keeping the global economy afloat in recent years, are no longer tolerated in the foreign-exchange markets” More at the CS Monitor.

Lately, the drug war has taken a back seat to conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. But it’s still being fought, and statistically, at least, it’s being won. Yet behind the numbers, the drug war is changing – into a terror war of its own. And the success of that fight is harder to quantify.

Story on Salon: Privatization follies. Halliburton fraud. IRS tax-collection shenanigans. Voting-machine madness. There’s got to be a better way.

Damn, that’s cool: Make your own Altoids mp3 player

Not a user of it myself, but you can force the Google desktop search to check out other file types.

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