Black XP Theme

So I was searching for something and ended up on this page: Have A Look At My Desktop.

I thought the skull background image was rather cute, but the author stated he didn’t remember where he got it from, besides that it was from DeviantArt. So I searched for: cute skull deviantart and the first link on Blingo returned Skull Wallpaper by ~LordZoltan. (Did I mention that I won a $10 Amazon.com Gift Certificate off Blingo recently?) Anyway, I can’t believe such a query actually worked!

Unfortunately, he only has one size for this wall paper: 1152×864, but that was easily fixed by centering the image and changing the default background color to black.

Next, I noticed that his taskbar was black. I was like, that’s rather cool. I also liked how he replaced his start button with just a windows flag. He didn’t mention if this was XP or Vista, but I’m assuming it’s XP since the recycle bin icon I believe was updated in Vista.

So the hunt for the black XP theme began. I found a couple of them.

The first one I found was via this video: Black XP Theme FREE, which points us to Zune Desktop Theme. I gave that a whirl. Turned out pretty nice:

zune desktop windows xp theme - cute skull

I then found: Royale Noir: secret XP theme uncovered. Theme is very similar to the Zune Desktop. The shades of black and gray are definitely not the same, and instead of orange (for the start menu button and the arrow), they’ve chosen green. Not bad either:

royal noir windows xp theme - cute skull

I also found this one: XP Themes / Black Mesa which looks nice too, but I haven’t tried it on my system yet.

UPDATE: The Zune Desktop theme even made my download status bar orange!

firefox orange download status bar

Zeitgeist

Zeitgeist is a very interesting documentary I had downloaded awhile back. It’s actually a free documentary and you can stream it via Google Video or download a higher quality version using bittorrent.

Anyway, when I first started watching the film, I didn’t realize it was 3 parts, so I thought it was just a documentary on Christianity as the 1st part is about Jesus and the era of the Bull and the 2 fish and so on. It was fascinating, but not enough for me to watch it right then and there. So I put it on my back burner of stuff to watch when I eventually end up with some free time.

After posting my blog entry on Corrupt Banking System, RayAlome had asked if I had watched Zeitgeist yet as it contained very good information about the history of the Federal Reserve. I said I didn’t realize Zeitgeist talked about the Federal Reserve, but honestly, I’ve read a lot about the Federal Reserve already, usually linked to how it’s unconstitutional along with income tax; how the Federal Reserve scams the American people by controlling the money supply, when they’re not part of the government at all, but owned by private corporations; etc.

The film is almost 2 hours long and contains 3 parts: Christianity, 9/11, and The Federal Reserve. If you don’t have a full 2 hours to watch the entire film, I’d suggest you watch just Part 3, which begins at 01:09:17.

I give you this excellent quote from the narrator:

For every single dollar produced by the central bank, it is loaned at interest. That means every dollar produced is that dollar + a certain amount of debt based on that dollar. And since the central bank has a monopoly of the money production for the entire country, and they loan each dollar out with immediate debt attached to it, where does the money to pay for the debt come from? It can only come from the central bank again. Which means the central bank has to perpetually increase its money supply, to temporarily cover the outstanding debt created, which in turn since that new money is loaned out at interest as well, creates even more debt. The end result of is this system without fail is slavery, for it is impossible for government and thus public to ever come out this self generating debt.

Therefore, it is impossible in our current system for all debt, especially the government’s $9 trillion debt to ever disappear.

Speaking of which, did you know that most if not all income taxes Americans pay goes directly to pay for the interest generated by the government debt. The fact that the income tax amendment was created the same time that the Federal Reserve was created is not a coincidence. This little tidbit I knew before watching this film. Apparently, the income tax amendment was never ratified by the required 3/4 of all the states.

What never really made sense is the fact that the government borrows money from the Federal Reserve, who creates money to loan to the U.S. Government, but charges interest. Shouldn’t the interest be paid back to the government? Why is the interest paid to a select few private corporations?

The war tidbit of the documentary is fascinating. They provided interesting reasons to why America entered certain wars and how wars weren’t fought to be won, but fought to be extended for as long as possible. Wars are very lucrative to bankers as that’s when the government will keep borrowing money to fund the war. You should see the guidelines provided to the soldiers of the Vietnam War as it’s ridiculous and one of the reasons why that we lost so many soldiers.

Derek Tekmanrj has remarked what’s wrong with our money supply is due to the fact that it’s fiat money, basically it’s money because the government says so. Before, you were able to take a dollar and redeem it for gold and explicitly says so on the bill itself. Now, it just says legal tender which means it’s backed by nothing. The documentary also goes into this area, but not too deep.

Here are some interesting quotes I thought I’d share:

Give me control of a nation’s money supply, and I care not who makes its laws.

– Mayer Amschel Rothschild
Founder of Rothschild Banking Dynasty

“WE’RE IN A LOT OF TROUBLE! Because you people, and 62 million other Americans, are listening to me right now. Because less than 3% of you people read books. ‘Cause less than 15% of you read newspapers. Because the only truth you know is what you get over this tube. Right now, there is a whole … an entire generation, that never knew anything that didn’t come out of this tube. This tube is the gospel…the ultimate revelation. This tube can make or break presidents, popes, prime ministers; this tube is the most awesome goddamn force in the whole godless world, and woe is us if it ever falls into the hands of the wrong people.

And when the largest company in the world controls the most awesome goddamn propaganda force in the whole godless world, who knows what SHIT we’ll be peddling for truth on this network.

So, you listen to me…LISTEN TO ME! Television is not the truth…television is a goddamn amusement park. Television is a circus, a carnival, a traveling troupe of acrobats, storytellers, dancers, singers, jugglers, side show freaks, lion tamers and football players. We’re in the boredom killing business.

But you people sit there day after day, night after night…all ages, colors, creeds. Where are you now? You’re beginning to believe the illusions we’re spinning here…you’re beginning to think that the tube is reality and that your own lives are unreal. You do whatever the tube tells you. You dress like a tube, you eat like a tube, you raise your children like a tube; you even THINK like a tube. This is MASS MADNESS you MANIACS! In God’s name, you people are the real thing…WE ARE THE ILLUSION!”

This was actually taken from a 1976 film called Network: Television Is Not The Truth and modified a bit.

An evil exists that threatens every man, woman and child of this great nation. We must take steps to ensure our domestic security and protect our homeland.

– Adolf Hitler
When announcing the Gestapo to the people

As the documentary continues, his pushes the idea that the main goal of a central banking system is One World Government.

Did you know that Bush is secretly pushing for a North American Union. Only one news reporter has ever reported about it on TV and that’s CNN. Everyone else has never even brought up the topic. Apparently, this has no consent from Congress either. If you haven’t heard of the North American Union, you probably haven’t heard of Amero either. Amero will be the new currency that will be used throughout the North American Union. Doesn’t this sound rather familiar to you? Of course! European Union, Euro, etc.

According to this documentary, an African Union and an Asian Union will also be formed. Who’s behind all this? Why, isn’t it the same investors of the Federal Reserve? Of course, I’d take that with a grain of salt, but the theory is enough to scare me.

Once again, I highly recommended watching Part 3 of this documentary.

On a related note, Ungsunghero told me that Netbank has closed/failed and the FDIC has taken over them. According to the closing information, all existing accounts will be transferred to ING. According to CNN’s article: 2nd UPDATE: US Federal Regulators Close NetBank:

NetBank marked the largest bank to fail since since the early 1990s, which marked the end of the savings and loan crisis. The Office of Thrift Supervision closed NetBank at 3 p.m. EDT, the federal regulator said, and the company was immediately taken into receivership by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.

Gaming Addiction

So I was reading this article on Games for Windows titled: Don’t Call Me Catass by Jeff Green. It’s not posted online (yet?) as this is part of the October issue. It’s an interesting article about gaming addiction and there are some things I wanted to share.

Early on he introduces some terms I’ve never heard of:

They do not want to nurture or encourage the sad legion of poopsockers and catassers and pasty-faced, three-chinned zombies profiled on shows like 48 Hours and The Tyra Banks Show for having lost their jobs and families because of their inability to stop gaming. Nor do I want to be one of those people. I laugh at those people.

Honestly, I’ve known a few people who had fallen behind in college and even dropped out due to gaming addiction. One of my friend’s parents even drove all the way from Southern California to Berkeley after he got put on probation and took away his Sony WEGA TV. I personally was never a big fan of MMORPGs, but those who are say it’s very easy to get addicted to.

Having no idea what catasser or poopsocker meant, I decided to check them out on Urban Dictionary:

catass

Some one who plays a Online game and excludes everything else. Often used to describe when some one has a lot of time to spend in a online game.
Came from a article in a newspaper on Everquest. The player they interviewed played so much Everquest he forgot to change his cats littler box, leading the reported to comment his house smelled like “a cats ass”.

Not every one has enough time to catass foir items in Everquest.

That guy is such a catass, he has been at the same spawn for 9 hours straight.

The explanation of poopsocker is actually rather gross, so if you’re eating, I’d recommend you skip the next section.

poopsocker

In reference to players of MMORPG’s that instead of taking a break to go to the bathroom, they take off their sock, defecate in it, and throw it aside for later disposal. Refers to someone who stays up all day and all night to play an MMORPG.

“Steve, how’d you make lvl 50 already? You were just lvl 45 a couple days ago. You friggin poopsocker!”

Ungsunghero questions why it’s not called a sockpooper instead, as it would sound more correct as the -er usually modifies the verb, which in this case is “poop”. People would recognize what sockpooper means pretty much immediately. Poopsocker just sounds like someone how socks poop, which also brings up a disturbing image nonetheless.

Anyway, it appears the original term was poopsock, so maybe that’s how the term poopsocker came about:

poopsock

1. A sock that is used as a temporary contained for faecal matter.
2. A vital part of any dedicated EverQuest player’s equipment. A poopsock eliminates the need to go all the way to the bathroom, which wastes valuable levelling time.
3. An insult used to refer to an obsessive MMORPG player who gains an unusually high number of levels in one day.

SpawnSlayer13 is such a poopsock. He got from level 1 to 60 in the space of a day.

Near the end of the article, he talks about the game Peggle which Hjo3 and Ungsunghero introduced to me recently. That game is addictive, but thank god that it cost $20 for the full version, so I stopped after the 1st 3 stages.

And that’s not all. I have bailed out on important social events because I was “busy,” only to spend that entire time trying to beat Peggle.

Speaking of which, I picked up Halo 3 and Blue Dragon today. God knows when I’ll actually play them, but for $25 a pop, I thought it was worth it to add to my collection.

Corrupt Banking System

First thing first, after the Feds decided to drop rates by 0.5%, many banks have been following suit with ING Direct’s interest rates now down to 4.30% and HSBC Direct announcing a drop to 4.50%. Oh well, I’d wait a bit before deciding if I should move my money around, since I’m pretty sure more banks will drop in the next few weeks.

Speaking of which, the $50 ING sign up bonus is back! Well, for awhile. Exclusive $50 bonus for nytimes.com readers who open an account with an initial deposit of at least $250 by 10/01/07! For those who haven’t opened an ING account yet, this is a great bargain as the usual bonus is $25 for you and $10 for your referrer.

Anyway, the main topic of this blog is the Corrupt Banking System. I knew banks created money out of thin air, but when CMDCC asked how it was done, I wasn’t able to give a detailed explanation. However, the following documentary was posted on YouTube and is a must watch if you’re into how banks work: Corrupt Banking System.

It’s a 5 part series:

  1. Cartels Robbing the Public
  2. How Money is Created
  3. Money is Debt
  4. Monetary Reform
  5. Warning About the NWO

Currently America is over $9 trillion in debt, but how did we get into this situation? Who are we borrowing from? Who has all that money to loan to us? Many people actually don’t know that the Federal Reserves isn’t actually part of the government, but is controlled by a small group of board of directors, usually major banking players. They’re the ones in charge of our nation’s entire financial situation, including printing money. How can we outsource printing of money to private organizations? You can read more about The Fed on Wikipedia.

Back to the videos. I’ve only watched 2 of them so far, but it’s told me more than I need to know about how banks can create money out of thin air. Today, when banks loan you money, I always thought they can only loan you money they already have (from deposits and reserves), but apparently that isn’t the case. Banks can loan you money backed by some small amount of reserve and the promise you’ll repay the debt. To give you an example, the current ratio (I forget the terminology) is 9:1. For every $1 the bank has, they can loan out $9. That is to say if the bank has $1000 in its reserves, it can loan out $9000 just based on the promise that you’ll repay the debt. In other words, $8000 was created out out of thin air, loaned to you, and now you have to pay interest on that $8000 that didn’t exist in the first place.

After realizing that, I just couldn’t stop thinking HOW CAN THEY DO THAT!?!?!?

The documentary goes further into proving that for every $1 that a bank has, it can eventually loan out $90 (90x the original investment). Banks expect money they loan out to be paid to someone, who’ll eventually deposit the money back into a bank. Because the banking system is a closed system, all the money just circulates within themselves. And with the new deposit, they have new money to loan out, each time, less than what they can loan out previously. And with a simple area under the curve calculation, it comes out to the fact that you can loan out 90x what you originally have.

This gets me really pissed off just thinking about it. Imagine a $360,000 mortgage loan (pretty close to what I have). Basically the bank only needs to have $40,000 in order to issue me that loan. And it would make sense if I had to pay interest only on the amount they have. But no, they’re charging me interest on the full $360,000 amount. No wonder banking investments are so lucrative.

This got me thinking… If I have $40,000 just lying somewhere, can I issue myself a $360,000 loan and just make monthly payments back to myself? It took me awhile to get my head wrapped around that idea, because basically every monthly payment I make would disappear into the abyss because it never really existed in the 1st place, but that’s basically how the banks do it. Then it also got me thinking, can I issue myself a interest-free loan? That’d be sweet!

Maybe I should get into the banking business after all. Create money out of thin air and make interest off of it.

Ichi, Ni, San…

So while I was watching My-Hime (舞-HiME), the students were counting as they were practicing their tennis swings. So I counted along with them: ichi, ni, san, shi, go, roku, (by this time, the chanting has faded away) shichi, ocho *screeching halt*. Ocho?!?! Is that 8 in Japanese? Wait… What the heck. How did Spanish suddenly get involved? I couldn’t help but laugh at the situation. I racked my mind a bit to figure out what 8 was in Japanese and I figured it out moments later to be hachi.

It’s funny how I’ve mixed up numbers like that. Then again, ocho technically can be a Japanese word: おちょ. So maybe that was why it sounded right for a moment.

Traffic Jam Game

Well, it’s not exactly a game, but I’m curious who else out there does this. Whenever I get stuck in a traffic jam, the most difficult decision I have to make is whether to change lanes or not. And for some reason, almost immediately after I change lanes, the lane I was originally on becomes faster. Of course this is all in my mind, so I ended up coming up with a game. What I do is before I change lanes, I mark the car behind me. By mark, I mean remember its color and shape and model, etc.

What I do then is always keep an eye out for him. If he never passes me, I’m happy since I had made the correct decision. If he does pass me and I never get the chance to pass him again, that means I made a bad decision by switching lanes, and that makes me sad.

Usually throughout the entire traffic jam, I’ll have about 2 or 3 cars marked, since I usually change lanes about 2 or 3x.

Bologna?

Who the heck decided to pronounced bologna as baloney or decided to write baloney as bologna? While shopping at Safeway today (which I have now found out that postage stamps don’t contribute to the $50 total if you want to get the 10¢ gas discount), I was walking down the ham aisle. While trying to decide what to get, I was surprised the Oscar Mayer Bologna wasn’t on sale, but every other bologna was (beef, turkey, etc.).

Anyway, I always just thought “baloney” was just a slang for bologna since it’s not easy for kids to say bo-lone-ga (which is what I’ve always called it). Someone awhile back corrected me and told me that’s how “baloney” is supposed to be spelled. I was like WTF? What idiot decided to spell baloney like that or decided to pronounce bologna as baloney.

Anyway, I decided to look up bologna to see if there’s a good reason for this. According to Wikipedia:

It is commonly called bologna and often pronounced (by hypercorrection) and/or spelled baloney.

However, I did noticed that there was a city in Italy called Bologna:

Bologna (IPA [boˈloɲɲa], from Latin Bononia, Bulåggna in Emiliano dialect) is the capital city of Emilia-Romagna in northern Italy, in the Pianura Padana, between the Po River and the Apennines, exactly between the Reno River and the Sàvena River.

They apparently pronounced Bologna as bo-lone-ya, which I can see how, and definitely sounds more correct than Baloney, Italy.

Digging up some more, I found this on Online Etymology Dictionary:

bologna – 1850, variant of bologna sausage (1596), named for the city in Italy, formerly Bononia. See baloney.

If a city like Bononia does exist, I can completely see why baloney is pronounced as so. Searching on Wikipedia resulted in this:

Bononia is the Roman name of several cities, including:

  • Bologna, Italy
  • Boulogne-sur-Mer, France
  • Vidin, Bulgaria
  • Banoštor, Serbia

So my hunch tells me that it could be that this sausage was originally called baloney because the Bologna city back then was called Bononia. After the city changed it’s name, they didn’t change the way the sausage was pronounced, and when it was added into the English dictionary, it took the pronunciation of the original Bononia, but used the modern name of Bologna as the spelling.

Fascinating…