Article 43


Thursday, August 28, 2008

Wake Up America

Kucinich At The 2008 Democratic National Convention

“We Democrats are giving America a wake-up call,” he preached. Wake up, America. In 2001, the oil companies, the war contractors and the NEO-CON artists SEIZED THE ECONOMY and have added $4 trillion of unproductive spending to the national debt. We now pay four times MORE FOR DEFENSE, three times MORE FOR GASOLINE and home heating OIL, and twice what we paid for health care.”

Sleepy delegates in a half-empty arena began to take notice. A couple of them pointed.

If there was an Olympics for misleading, mismanaging and misappropriating, THIS ADMINISTRATION WOULD TAKE THE GOLD,” Kucinich said. World records for violations of national and international laws we can’t afford another Republican administration. Wake up, America.

The insurance companies took over HEALTH CARE. Wake up, America. The pharmaceutical companies took over drug pricing. Wake up, America. The speculators took over Wall Street. Wake up, America. They want to take your Social Security. Wake up, America.

He had them. Where was this speech when the tiny Ohio congressman was running for president? Or did we really just not pay attention?

“This administration can TAP OUR PHONES. They can’t tap our creative SPIRIT, he said. “They can open our mail. They can’t open economic opportunities. They can track our every move. They lost track of the economy while the cost of food, gasoline and electricity skyrockets. They skillfully played our post-9/11 fears and allowed the few to profit at the expense of the many. Every day we get the color orange while the oil companies, the insurance companies, the speculators, the war contractors get the color green.”

“Wake up, America! This is not a call for you to take a new direction from right to left. This is call for you to go from down to up. Up with the rights of workers. Up with wages.”

And Dennis Kucinich began to bounce, the way the ministers of my girlhood churches did.

“Up with fair trade. Up with creating millions of good paying jobs, REBUILDING our bridges, ports and water systems,” he said, his voice rising, people rising and grinning at the Dennis Kucinich who was surprising them.

“Up with health care for all,” he said. “Up with education for all. Up with homeownership. Up with guaranteed retirement benefits. Up with peace. Up with prosperity. Up with the Democratic Party. Up with Obama-Biden!”

Hmmmmm. DID THE DEMOCRATS MISS SOMETHING along the way from the only MAN WITH THE COURAGE to introduce a resolution in June to impeach President George W. Bush and whose speech reminded those gathered who their fight actually was with?


Posted by Elvis on 08/28/08 •
Section General Reading
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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Internet’s Biggest Security Hole

There’s not much difference between the internet and our FINANCIAL SYSTEM concerning the lack of oversight.  The truth SENDS CHILLS down my spine.


By Kim Zette
August 26, 2008

Two security researchers have demonstrated a new technique to stealthily intercept internet traffic on a scale previously presumed to be unavailable to anyone outside of intelligence agencies like the National Security Agency.

The tactic exploits the internet routing protocol BGP (Border Gateway Protocol) to let an attacker surreptitiously monitor unencrypted internet traffic anywhere in the world, and even modify it before it reaches its destination.

The demonstration is only the latest attack to highlight fundamental security weaknesses in some of the internet’s core protocols. Those protocols were largely developed in the 1970s with the assumption that every node on the then-nascent network would be trustworthy.  The world was reminded of the quaintness of that assumption in July, when researcher DAN KAMINSKY DISCLOSED a serious vulnerability in the DNS SYSTEM. Experts say the new demonstration targets a potentially larger weakness.

“It’s a huge issue. It’s at least as big an issue as the DNS issue, if not bigger,” said Peiter “Mudge” Zatko, noted computer security expert and former member of the L0pht hacking group, who testified to Congress in 1998 that he could bring down the internet in 30 minutes using a similar BGP attack, and disclosed privately to government agents how BGP COULD ALSE BE EXPLOITED to eavesdrop. “I went around screaming my head about this about ten or twelve years ago.... We described this to intelligence agencies and to the National Security Council, in detail.”

The man-in-the-middle attack exploits BGP to fool routers into re-directing data to an eavesdropper’s network.

Anyone with a BGP router (ISPs, large corporations or ANYONE WITH SPACE at a carrier hotel) could intercept data headed to a target IP address or group of addresses. The attack intercepts only traffic headed to target addresses, not from them, and it can’t always vacuum in traffic within a network—say, from one AT&T customer to another.

The method conceivably could be used for corporate espionage, nation-state spying or even by intelligence agencies looking to mine internet data without needing the cooperation of ISPs.

BGP eavesdropping has long been a theoretical weakness, but no one is known to have publicly demonstrated it until Anton “Tony” Kapela, data center and network director at 5Nines Data, and Alex Pilosov, CEO of Pilosoft, showed their technique at the recent DefCon hacker conference. The pair successfully intercepted traffic bound for the conference network and redirected it to a system they controlled in New York before routing it back to DefCon in Las Vegas.

The technique, devised by Pilosov, doesn’t exploit a bug or flaw in BGP. It simply exploits the natural way BGP works.

“We’re not doing anything out of the ordinary,” Kapela told “There’s no vulnerabilities, no protocol errors, there are no software problems. The problem arises (from) the level of interconnectivity that’s needed to maintain this mess, to keep it all working.”

The issue exists because BGP’s architecture is based on trust. To make it easy, say, for e-mail from Sprint customers in California to reach Telefonica customers in Spain, networks for these companies and others communicate through BGP routers to indicate when they’re the quickest, most efficient route for the data to reach its destination. But BGP assumes that when a router says it’s the best path, it’s telling the truth. That gullibility makes it easy for eavesdroppers to fool routers into sending them traffic.

Here’s how it works. When a user types a website name into his browser or clicks “send” to launch an e-mail, a Domain Name System server produces an IP address for the destination. A router belonging to the user’s ISP then consults a BGP table for the best route. That table is built from announcements, or “advertisements,” issued by ISPs and other networks—also known as Autonomous Systems, or ASes—declaring the range of IP addresses, or IP prefixes, to which they’ll deliver traffic.

The routing table searches for the destination IP address among those prefixes. If two ASes deliver to the address, the one with the more specific prefix “wins” the traffic. For example, one AS may advertise that it delivers to a group of 90,000 IP addresses, while another delivers to a subset of 24,000 of those addresses. If the destination IP address falls within both announcements, BGP will send data to the narrower, more specific one.

To intercept data, an eavesdropper would advertise a range of IP addresses he wished to target that was narrower than the chunk advertised by other networks. The advertisement would take just minutes to propagate worldwide, before data headed to those addresses would begin arriving to his network.

The attack is called an IP hijack and, on its face, isn’t new.

But in the past, known IP hijacks have created outages, which, because they were so obvious, were quickly noticed and fixed. That’s what occurred earlier this year when Pakistan Telecom inadvertently hijacked YouTube traffic from around the world. The traffic hit a dead-end in Pakistan, so it was apparent to everyone trying to visit YouTube that something was amiss.

Pilosov’s innovation is to forward the intercepted data silently to the actual destination, so that no outage occurs.

Ordinarily, this shouldn’t work—the data would boomerang back to the eavesdropper. But Pilosov and Kapela use a method called AS path prepending that causes a select number of BGP routers to reject their deceptive advertisement. They then use these ASes to forward the stolen data to its rightful recipients.

“Everyone ... has assumed until now that you have to break something for a hijack to be useful,” Kapela said. “But what we showed here is that you don’t have to break anything. And if nothing breaks, who notices?”

Stephen Kent, chief scientist for information security at BBN Technologies, who has been working on solutions to fix the issue, said he demonstrated a similar BGP interception privately for the Departments of Defense and Homeland Security a few years ago.

Kapela said network engineers might notice an interception if they knew how to read BGP routing tables, but it would take expertise to interpret the data.

A handful of academic groups collect BGP routing information from cooperating ASes to monitor BGP updates that change traffic’s path. But without context, it can be difficult to distinguish a legitimate change from a malicious hijacking. There are reasons traffic that ordinarily travels one path could suddenly switch to another—say, if companies with separate ASes merged, or if a natural disaster put one network out of commission and another AS adopted its traffic. On good days, routing paths can remain fairly static. But “when the internet has a bad hair day,” Kent said, “the rate of (BGP path) updates goes up by a factor of 200 to 400.”

Kapela said eavesdropping could be thwarted if ISPs aggressively filtered to allow only authorized peers to draw traffic from their routers, and only for specific IP prefixes. But filtering is labor intensive, and if just one ISP declines to participate, it “breaks it for the rest of us,” he said.

“Providers can prevent our attack absolutely 100 percent,” Kapela said. “They simply don’t because it takes work, and to do sufficient filtering to prevent these kinds of attacks on a global scale is cost prohibitive.”

Filtering also requires ISPs to disclose the address space for all their customers, which is not information they want to hand competitors.

Filtering isn’t the only solution, though. Kent and others are devising processes to authenticate ownership of IP blocks, and validate the advertisements that ASes send to routers so they don’t just send traffic to whoever requests it.

Under the scheme, the five regional internet address registries would issue signed certificates to ISPs attesting to their address space and AS numbers. The ASes would then sign an authorization to initiate routes for their address space, which would be stored with the certificates in a repository accessible to all ISPs. If an AS advertised a new route for an IP prefix, it would be easy to verify if it had the right to do so.

The solution would authenticate only the first hop in a route to prevent unintentional hijacks, like Pakistan Telecom’s, but wouldn’t stop an eavesdropper from hijacking the second or third hop.

For this, Kent and BBN colleagues developed Secure BGP (SBGP), which would require BGP routers to digitally sign with a private key any prefix advertisement they propagated. An ISP would give peer routers certificates authorizing them to route its traffic; each peer on a route would sign a route advertisement and forward it to the next authorized hop.

“That means that nobody could put themselves into the chain, into the path, unless they had been authorized to do so by the preceding AS router in the path,” Kent said.

The drawback to this solution is that current routers lack the memory and processing power to generate and validate signatures. And router vendors have resisted upgrading them because their clients, ISPs, haven’t demanded it, due to the cost and man hours involved in swapping out routers.

Douglas Maughan, cybersecurity research program manager for the DHS’s Science and Technology Directorate, has helped fund research at BBN and elsewhere to resolve the BGP issue. But he’s had little luck convincing ISPs and router vendors to take steps to secure BGP.

“We haven’t seen the attacks, and so a lot of times people don’t start working on things and trying to fix them until they get attacked,” Maughan said. “(But) the YouTube (case) is the perfect example of an attack where somebody could have done much worse than what they did.”

ISPs, he said, have been holding their breath, “hoping that people dont discover (this) and exploit it.”

“The only thing that can force them (to fix BGP) is if their customers ... start to demand security solutions,” Maughan said.


Posted by Elvis on 08/27/08 •
Section Privacy And Rights • Section Broadband Privacy
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Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Bad Moon Rising Part 30


War With Russia Is On The Agenda

By Paul Craig Roberts
August 26, 2008

Thinking about the massive failure of the US media to REPORT TRUTHFULLY is sobering.  The United States, bristling with nuclear weapons and pursuing a policy of world hegemony, has a population that is kept in the dark--indeed brainwashed--about the most important and most dangerous events of our time.

The power of the Israel Lobby is an important component of keeping Americans in the dark. Recently I watched a DOCUMENTARY that demonstrates the control that the Israel Lobby exercises over Americans view of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. 

As a result of the US mediaҒs one-sided coverage, few Americans are aware that for decades Israel has been ethnically cleansing Palestinians from their homes and lands under protection of Americas veto in the United Nations.  Instead, the dispossessed Palestinians are portrayed as mindless terrorists who attack innocent Israel. 

If one reads Israeli newspapers, such as Haaretz, or publications from Israeli organizations, such as the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, one gets a radically different view of the situation than the propagandistic version delivered by US media and evangelical pulpits.

Most Americans know of the 2000 attack by Muslim terrorists on the USS Cole in Aden harbor that resulted in 17 dead and 39 wounded American sailors. But few have heard of Israel’s 1967 attack on the USS Liberty that left 34 American sailors dead and 174 wounded.  Pressured by the Israel Lobby, President Johnson ordered Admiral McCain, father of the Republican presidential nominee, to cover up the attack. To this day there never has been a congressional investigation. 

The failure of the American media is again evident in the coverage of the Georgian-Russian conflict.  The US media presented the conflict as a Russian invasion of Georgia, whereas in actual fact the American and Israeli trained and equipped Georgian military launched a sneak attack to kill and to drive the Russian population out of South Ossetia, a separatist province. 

Russian peacekeepers, together with Georgian ones, had been stationed in South Ossetia since the early 1990s. On orders from Mikheil Saakashvili, the American puppet presidentӔ of Georgia, the Georgian peacekeepers turned their weapons on the unsuspecting Russian peacekeepers and murdered them.

This action by Saakashvili, elected with money from the neoconservative National Endowment for Democracy, an election-rigging tool of US hegemony, was a war crime.  In truth, the Russians should have hung Saakashvili, as he is far more guilty than was Saddam Hussein.  But it is Russia, not Saakashvili, that the US media has demonized.

Americans have become perfect subjects for George Orwells Big Brother.  They sit stupidly in front of the TV news or the New York Times or Washington Post and absorb the lies fed to them.  What is wrong with Americans?  Why do they put up with it?  Are Americans the nation of sheep that Judge Andrew P. Napolitano says they are?  Americans flaunt ғfreedom and democracy and live under a Ministry of Propaganda. 

Two decades ago, President Reagan reached agreement with Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev to end the dangerous cold war.  But every one of ReaganԒs successors has sought to pick a new fight with Russia.  In violation of the agreement, NATO has been taken to Russias borders, and the US is determined to put former constituent parts of Russia herself into NATO.  In an effort to neutralize Russia’s nuclear deterrent and compromise her independence, the US is putting anti-ballistic missile bases on Russias borders.

The gratuitously aggressive US military policy toward Russia will lead to nuclear war. I am confident that if Americans elect John McCain, or the Republicans steal another presidential election, there will be nuclear war in the second decade of the 21st century.  The neocon lies, propaganda, macho flag-waving, and use of US foreign policy in the interests of a few military-security firms, oil companies, and Israel are all leading in that direction.

The November election is perhaps the last chance to avoid nuclear war. But the opportunity might already have been missed.  The Republicans have chosen as their candidate one of the most ignorant warmongers alive.  The DemocratsҒ choice was between one of the most divisive women in America and a man of mixed race with a funny name.  Considering Americans taste for war, the Democratic candidate could fail to defeat the GOP war candidate.

Many Americans will vote against Obama because he is black.  Why does mixed ancestry confer the black label?  If AmericaҒs population was predominantly black, would Obama be considered white?

Race and propaganda are more likely to determine the outcome of the November election than any awareness or consideration of real issues by voters. 

The real issues are suffocated by the media.  The American middle class is being destroyed by jobs offshoring and work visas for foreigners, while the incomes of the super rich are soaring. The US dollars reserve currency status is eroded. The US is massively in debt at home and abroad.  Health insurance is unaffordable for the vast majority of the population. Injured veterans are being nickeled and dimed, while HalliburtonҒs profits escalate. Americans are losing their homes, while the US government bails out banks. Wars with Iran, Russia, and China are being planned in order to secure US hegemony. 

Americans no longer have a government that is for the people and by the people. They have a government for and by special interests and an insane ideology.

But Americans have war, which lets them take out all their frustrations, resentments, and disappointments on Muslim terrorists and Russian aggressors.  Few Americans are disturbed that 1.25 million Iraqis and an unknown number of Afghans have died as a result of American invasions based on Bush regime lies and deceptions. Even Americans, like Senator Biden, Obamas selection for vice president, who understand that the wars are based on lies, still want the US to win.  So, it was all a mistake and a deception, but letԒs win anyway and keep on killing.

“I know people who still complain that the US did not nuke North Vietnam.  When I ask why Vietnam should have been nuked, they reply, if we had nuked them we would have won.”

What would America have won?  The answer is world loathing and the loss of the cold war.

For many Americans, war is like a sports contest in which they take vicarious pleasure and cheer on their side to victory.  Millions of Americans are still bitter that the liberal mediaғ and war protesters caused America to lose the Vietnam war, and they are determined that this wont happen again.  These Americans have no realization that there was no more reason for the US to be fighting in Vietnam 40 years ago than to be fighting today in Iraq and Afghanistan or tomorrow in Iran. 

Obama, if elected, is no guarantee against nuclear war.  Obama has shown that he is as much under the Israel LobbyԒs thumb as McCain.  Obamas foreign affairs advisor, Zbigniew Brzezinski, is not a neocon, but he was born in Warsaw, Poland, and has the Pole’s animosity toward Russia.  The Bush administration has already changed US war doctrine to permit preemptive nuclear attack. With the US government determined to ring Russia with puppet states and military bases, war is inevitable.

Presidential appointees face confirmation in the Senate. Any of Obamas appointees who might be out of step with plans for US and Israeli hegemony could expect opposition from large corporations and the Israel Lobby.  There is no assurance that an Obama administration would not be positioned on Ғthe issues by the same special interests that have positioned the Bush administration.

Americans are filled with hubris, not with knowledge.  They have no awareness of the calamity that their government’s pursuit of hegemony is bringing to themselves and to life on earth. 

Dr. Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury in the Reagan Administration. He is a former Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal, a 16-year columnist for Business Week, and a columnist for the Scripps Howard News Service and Creators Syndicate in Los Angeles. He has held numerous university professorships, including the William E. Simon Chair in Political Economy, Center for Strategic and International Studies, Georgetown University and Senior Research Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University. He was awarded the Legion of Honor by the President of France and the US Treasury’s Silver Medal for outstanding contributions to the formulation of US economic policy.


Bad Moon Rising
Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3 - Part 4 - Part 5
Part 6 - Part 7 - Part 8 - Part 9 - Part 10
Part 11 - Part 12 - Part 13 - Part 14 - Part 15
Part 16 - Part 17 - Part 18 - Part 19 - Part 20
Part 21 - Part 22 - Part 23 - Part 24 - Part 25
Part 26 - Part 27 - Part 28 - Part 29 - Part 30
Part 31 - Part 32 - Part 33 - Part 34 - Part 35
Part 36 - Part 37 - Part 38 - Part 39 - Part 40
Part 41 - Part 42 - Part 43 - Part 44 - Part 45
Part 46 - Part 47 - Part 48 - Part 49 - Part 50
Part 51 - Part 52 - Part 53 - Part 54

Posted by Elvis on 08/26/08 •
Section Bad Moon Rising
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Twenty Ways To Survive A Layoff

One day you’re employed, the next you’re not. One writer provides tips on how to deal with aspects you may not have thought about.

By Ron Nutter,
IDG News Service
August 25, 2008

Editor’s note: On Feb. 20, IT manager and Network World columnist Ron Nutter was called into his boss’s office and told he was being let go—that day. Once the initial shock wore off, Nutter launched an aggressive search for employment in the Kansas City area. Over the next 76 days, Nutter applied for 85 jobs, and had 16 interviews before landing a new position. He chronicled the job search in a daily blog. Now that he has had some time to reflect on the experience, Nutter offers these 20 tips for surviving a layoff.

1. As you’re being laid off, take notes
This can be difficult to do, because losing a job can be a very EMOTIONAL EXPERIENCE. Nevertheless, while everything is still fresh in your mind, writedown all the details you can remember. For example, I was told I would be paid for the full two-week pay period plus my remaining vacation and sick time. When my last check arrived, there were discrepancies. Having written notes helped me when I went back and reminded my former boss and the Human Resources folks of their commitment.

2. Take some time for yourself
Take a few days for yourself. A traumatic event has just happened to you, and you NEED TO GET OVER the initial shock before you jump into the fray to search for a new job.

3. Review the paperwork from the company that laid you off
You need to attend to several important things rather quickly. One is finding out how to file for unemployment. Another is determining how long your company-paid health insurance will be in force before you have to consider paying for COBRA insurance.

4. Update your resume
This is something we should all do, but it doesn’t always get the attention it should. I was told a long time ago that a resume should be more than two pages with a maximum of three bullet points per employer. That may work in some cases, but not in all.

I have found that some recruiters and employers use software that counts how many times a particular word, such as Cisco, or a word describing a certain type of experience appears in a resume. I can attest this is happening to a degree. During a previous job search, a recruiter had me rewritemy resume just about completely to list specifically all the different types of Cisco hardware I had worked with. It was interesting to note how the callbacks increased after I did that.

You may find it necessary to keep more than one type of resume, each tailored to the type of job you are pursuing.

5. Get a handle on monthly bills
Although I had a little money put by for a rainy day, I went through my recurring bills to see if there was any room for saving more. I found that by shopping around for automobile and homeowners insurance, I could keep the same coverage and reduce both bills. I had been thinking about doing this for a variety of reasons, but being unemployed helped push it to the top of the list.

6. Cut food costs
If you live by yourself, this will be easier to do. If you have a family, everyone will need to sit down and understand they will all have to help out until you can get another job. Not that I ate out a lot while I had a job, but I did eat out sometimes. When I was laid off, that stopped. The one treat I allowed myself each week was to stop by a local pizza place that made the pizza but you took it home to cook in your own oven. I made sure to take a coupon with me each week to take a couple dollars off the cost of the pizza.

I also shopped at my local Costco and bought the food I needed in bulk so I had to shop only once a month. Having a freezer make this easier to do. For example, I would buy a 3- to 5-pound tray of fish, which I would portion out into individual meals using a vacuum-sealing machine. Another suggestion: Buy several gallons of milk at one time and put them in the freezer. Pull one gallon out at a time, and it will still be good. I have been doing this for more than a year and have yet to notice a difference in the taste.

7. Look at health insurance options
Your company-supplied health insurance will come to an end. My former employer’s health insurance ended a few days after I was separated from the company. Worse yet, I wasn’t due to receive COBRA information until after my company health insurance had lapsed. Because my previous employer also had been processing my claims, I wasn’t comfortable with it having any further access to my medical records. Doing a little research on the Internet, I found a single health-insurance policy from Blue Cross Blue Shield for half the price of the COBRA policy my former employer was going to offer me and with better coverage.

8. Check with your financial adviser
I have worked with an excellent person at Smith Barney for several years. Because I knew I might need to access my credit line to help pay bills, I wanted to give him a heads-up on my situation so that he could be looking at other options to keep the use of the credit line as a last resort.

9. File for your income-tax return refund
Another thing to consider, depending on the time of year you are laid off, is to use your income-tax return as a one source of money for paying bills. I haven’t been a fan of paying for electronic filing, but this year I did spend the money so I would get the tax refund a little sooner.

10. File for unemployment compensation
This is something I delayed doing a little bit—partially because of pride and partially because I didn’t anticipate job-hunting to take more than three months. As someone pointed out to me, you have earned this money and you should take advantage of it. In my case, filing was complicated because I had moved from another state in the previous 18 months. The unemployment folks go back that far in figuring out where someone should file for unemployment. That potentially had me talking with three states’ unemployment departments. I spent several days on the phone with the two states that would be involved in my situation. As painful as it may be to deal with this part of your unemployment, the sooner you start, the sooner the money will come in in to help pay the bills until you get another job.

11. Check the job boards
During my job search, I looked at CareerBuilder, Craigslist, Dice, and Monster. I found NO JOB LEADS FROM MONSTER in my career area. Several of the HR folks I talked to during the process told me they used Monster very little, in part because of the higher fees the site charged for posting a job compared with other job boards, and in part because of the generally poorer quality of applications they received from Monster. I found some new job-postings on Dice, but with a significant number of jobs cross-posted on other boards, I didn’t find Dice to be a significant source of potential job leads. One source I wouldn’t have thought to check was Craigslist. More than one recruiter told me he had good results from posting jobs on Craigslist. Set aside time each day to do this.

12. Make the job boards work for you
Dice has a feature where you can make your resume searchable by companies and recruiters with a position to fill. I got some calls from that. CareerBuilder recently followed suit. Dice lets companies and recruiters repost a job every day so that it looks new, but in some cases this makes identifying the jobs a little harder. Turn the tables in your favor by making changes to your rsum periodically so that when it is searched it will show up as new or changed; this could get you looked at by a company or recruiter that might have passed you by the day before.

13. Prepare for the interview
One thing I have done when PREPARING FOR AN INTERVIEW is to research the company, as well as the companies, sectors, and industries it serves. If it is a publicly listed company, read some of its press releases from the the past quarter or two to see any changes that have occurred and new directions it is heading in. The responses I received from several companies indicate it makes a good impression that you are interested in finding out about the company before an interview. It may seem like a small thing or something that you should do anyway, but there seem to be quite a few people looking for a job who don’t do this.

In addition, have several copies of your resume with you at an interview. This becomes even more important once you see your resume as the client or recruiter does after they have downloaded it or printed it out from the job-board application: The formatting is pretty much gone. To make matters worse, the rsum’s paragraphs or bullet points will look like a series of poorly written, run-on sentences that may cause distinctive or unique information about you to be overlooked.

14. Deal with recruiters
I encountered a couple of RECRUITERS who would give used-car salesmen a bad name, but as a general rule, I found them pretty decent to work with. Several positions I was approached about were not on the job boards and sometimes were from only a single recruiter. The trick I learned was to identify the same end-job when it came from different recruiters. One situation you want to avoid is having more than one recruiter pitching you to the same client for the same job. Most recruiters usually will tell you early on who the actual end-client is.

15. Accept help from family
Your pride may make it hard for you to accept help, but keep in mind that your unemployment affects them to a degree as well. Depending on their ages, your unemployment may be a new thing to them. There was a time—unfortunately long-gone now—when the company you first worked for was the only company you worked for in your entire career. How much help you accept from family is something you will have to decide. Look at it this way: Whatever help they do give you is that much less you will have to spend for food.

16. Keep good records
This suggestion came from a letter from the unemployment department telling me I would need to provide some basic information. I set up a spreadsheet in OpenOffice with three tabs. At the first tab I kept track of the jobs I had applied for by date, source of the job, how the job was applied for, company name if known, job name, contact name, and job number if provided. At the second tab I kept track of the recruiters I talked to; HR folks I had contacted for the jobs to which I had applied directly; and anything else, such as job fairs I attended. This information was helpful when I was audited by the unemployment folks to make sure I was looking for another job. At the third tab I recorded when I filed my unemployment claim each week, when I received the check, and the check number and when it was deposited.

17. Get your personal records in order
When you accept a job offer, one of the things you will have to deal with is the I-9 form that proves you are allowed to work in this country. If you haven’t seen the I-9 form lately, get a copy so you can see what documents you will need. If you can’t find your Social Security card, now would be an excellent time to order a replacement. This will take several weeks to process. The sooner you receive it, the sooner you will have it ready to produce when you start your new job. Another documentyou want make sure you have, even if you don’t need it for the I-9, is a copy of your birth certificate. This might take a little while to get. I didn’t know until recently that, depending on when and/or where you were born, there are two types of birth certificates—one the hospital does and one that’s done when the birth is registered with the local authorities. You will want to get a copy of the certificate on file with the local authorities.

18. Don’t wait for the phone to ring
This may be one of the harder things to do. Keep in mind that recruiters and HR types move at their own pace, which can be very slow. When you first apply for a job, it could be several days or more before you get the first contact. Waiting for the phone to ring will have you climbing the walls in short order. Sometimes you will get a call within hours of applying for a job, but expect that to be the exception. There are always things you can do while you wait for movement on the job front, and some of them may be done at little to no cost—that little bit of touch-up painting you have never gotten around to, or the trimming around the yard that always needs to be done. You need to stay active—don’t just sit around and watch the clock move forward.

19. Get out of the house at least once a day
At some point you will run out of things to do around the house or will simply need to get out. There will be the occasional job fair, but that won’t take a large amount of your time. You can knock on the doors of companies that you would like to work at, but with the price of gas hovering around $4 a gallon depending on where you live, that can be an expensive trip to make for an unknown return. Do some things you enjoy, such as going to a museum or sports game. The main thing is to get out to keep from getting cabin fever.

20. Never give up
Don’t leave any stone unturned. You just may find that a company that today passed you over in favor of another applicant may come back to you when that person leaves to move onto greener pastures. I never would have thought that could happen, but I have seen it happen twice in the past year.

Nutter is an IT executive in Kansas City. He is also one of the editors of Network World’s IT Asked & Answered. He can be reached at nww networkref com.


Posted by Elvis on 08/26/08 •
Section Dealing with Layoff
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The False Logic of Hopelessness

In ominous times truth always finds a way out from darkness into light. Always. Through truth knowledge grows into the power and strength to question the actions of governance. In times that try mens souls it is those who seek enlightenment who are truly free. Given the choice of possessing ignorance or knowledge, even when ignorance would lead to an easier life, I would choose knowledge, thus escaping the life of sheeple, escaping the bondage of not knowing, not caring and not understanding.
- Valenzuela’s Veritas

Why the Elephant Should Stand Up to the Mouse

George Washington’s Blog
May 28, 2008

Polls show that the overwhelming majority of Americans believe that our country is GOING IN THE WRONG DIRECTION. That the Iraq war was a mistake. And polls show that the majority of Americans questions the government’s version of 9/11 and other basic tenets of the “war on terror”.

So why aren’t people doing anything to fix things?

It is largely because people are hopeless . . . they don’t think there is anything they can do to turn things around and improve our situation. Also, many people believe that they should just “lay low” until things get better, and that the only thing that standing up will accomplish is getting whacked in the head.

Apparently, it is not only ordinary Americans who believe they are powerless. Members of Congress also apparently believe they are powerless. See THIS and THIS.

Is Laying Low the Safest Path?

You find a black widow spider in your garage. You are afraid of it, so you decide to stay out of the garage and park your car out front. You hope that if you ignore it, it will go back outside and leave you alone.

Smart decision?

Not if it raises a family, and not if they move into the main part of your house. By ignoring the small threat (one spider), you might soon have a much bigger threat: a whole bunch of black widow spiders infesting your house.

This is where the expression “kill the monster while its small” comes from. Its a lot easier to face something scary in the early stages than when it has really gotten out of hand. (And this is why Neville Chamberlain is detested for trying to appease Hitler).

Similarly, the wanna-be fascists are consolidating THEIR POWER AND ABILITY TO IMPOSE MARTIAL LAW AND IMPRISON DISSENTERS. Indeed, they are apparently working on new ways to instill the SENSE OF HELPLESSNESS in people. They may also very well use BIGGER AND MORE DEADLY FORMS of fake terror in order to justify their agenda.

In the meantime, they are destroying the economy, America’s reputation in the world, and our way of life.

So “laying low” and pulling a Neville Chamberlain instead of killing the monster while its small will backfire . . . it will make things much worse than taking action now.

And IF YOU THINK that bad things will only happen to “someone else”, YOU’RE WRONG. Remember that “lawyers and professors, publishers and journalists, gun owners, illegal aliens, foreign nationals, and a great many other harmless, AVERAGE PEOPLE MAY BE IMPRISONED if the NEOCONS institute martial law.

The only safety is in standing up and stopping the madmen before they escalate their unconstitutional actions. The only safety is in massive action.

Why Doesn’t the Elephant Stomp the Mouse?

See if you can find the humor in this situation:

· The majority of Americans—hundreds of millions of people—don’t think they can do anything to stop a handful of anti-American neocons who are so far out of the mainstream of what anyone (conservative, liberal, green, libertarian, independent, etc.) wants that their long-standing nickname is “the crazies”

· Congress—which is a co-equal branch of government under the Constitution—is intimidated by a White House whose policies are less popular than salmonella

That’s like an elephant being afraid of a mouse. The elephant is many times bigger and stronger than the mouse, but it ACTS LIKE THE MOUSE IS A MORTAL DANGER.

Believing that we—the elephant—are threatened by the mouse, and that there is nothing we can do about it, is false logic. The mouse—the handful of Neocons who have taken over our country—has somehow hypnotized and convinced the giant American public that it is bigger than we are.

In reality, the American people outnumber the anti-American Neocons by many millions to one. If we want, we can simply throw the bums out, and throw them in jail for their crimes. If Congress wants, it can impeach them, hold them in contempt, and throw them in jail. They serve at our pleasure, and if they are acting in a manner treasonous to our country and the people’s interest, we should evict them.

True, they may have their finger on the button of a whole lot of weapons. But they can’t use them on millions of American citizens. For example, with all of the big toys in the world, they couldn’t do anything if we STAND UP FOR OUR RIGHTS.

We need only to wake up from the dream that we are powerless. See THIS, THIS, THIS and THIS.

Note: Please do not mistake my “kill the monster” or spider analogies as advocating violence. I do not advocate violence. Moreover, I am not advocating the overthrow of the government. I am calling for a RETURN to the American, Constitutional form of government and the rule of law, and removal of individuals who are traitors to the Constitution and the best interests of the nation, no matter how high and mighty they may be.


Posted by Elvis on 08/26/08 •
Section Revelations
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Some people come into our lives and quickly go. Some people move our souls to dance. They awaken us to a new understanding with the passing whisper of their wisdom. Some people make the sky more beautiful to gaze upon. They stay in our lives for awhile, leave footprints on our hearts, and we are never, ever the same. - Flavia Weedn


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