Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Steven Edwards for South Carolina US House District 4

The Platform

My campaign consists of a simple platform with a singular plank. Reapportioning the United States House of Representatives.

The political body that is supposed to represent us, the US House of Representatives is no longer serving it's constitutional designed purpose. John Adams believed the purpose of the house was to represent popular interests to combat the natural aristocracy that would be represented in the Senate.
Our voice has been lost. The people have spoken out time and time again, overwhelmingly to limit bad decisions by government. We see examples of it almost daily, be it the TARP program, the so-called healthcare overhaul, certain foreign affairs and the so-called war on drugs.
This problem can be traced back to Public Law 62-5 of 1911 and the Reapportionment Act of 1929 when the Number of US House Representatives was fixed at 435. Prior to this, the the house upheld it's constitutional duty to add representatives as needed as part of the redistricting process. This is a travesty akin to the 3/5th's compromise. Taxation without adequate representation is no better than taxation without representation.
To regain our voice, we must increase the number of seats in the house to better reflect original intent. Currently each of the 435 members represents an avarage of over 700,000 citizens. I believe trying to raise the number to reflect the original approtionment of one representative per 33,000 would be impractical. With a population of over 300 Million this would result in the house having over 9000 members. Instead I propose increasing the number of representatives to 3000 or 3500 which would give each member a constituency of 100,000 to 125,000 citizens. This number should be viewed as a seven fold increase in freedom and a seven fold reduction in corruption.
It has been said that there is something along the lines of 34,000 lobbyists in Washington which at 435 members of the house works out to about 80 per congressman. If there were suddenly 2000 more members of the US house, the corrupting influence would be reduced by seven fold.
I think it's time that we teach the body politic what Adams spoke about. The lesser house exists to represent the people while the upper house exists to represent the upper class. I know class warfare is a word that is thrown around derisively but the fact is that class warfare is a natural part of our constitution. If the lower house was a proper reflection of the population at large rather than the lobbying interests, the lobbyist proxy in the senate would not have the power it currently has to buy some of the votes we've see

Steven for Congress

Monday, December 28, 2009

CodeWeavers CrossOver PRO for Mac

CrossOver Mac allows you to install many popular Windows applications and games on your Intel OS X Mac. CrossOver includes an easy to use, single click interface, which makes installing Windows software simple and fast. Once installed, your application integrates seamlessly in OS X. Just click and run your application directly from the OS X Finder. Clicking a Windows file or document ? including email attachments ? will launch the appropriate Windows program, allowing you to work on the files. Best of all, you do it all easily and affordably, without needing a Microsoft operating system license.

Putty for Mac
Putty for Mac

DNS Benchmark with Wine

Internet browsing is a huge part our daily lives. No matter where we are we are bound to have contact with the internet in one form or another, and thus when we need it we want/need it to be as fast and as responsive as possible.
Before I get into how to find the fastest DNS for you, you need to know what a DNS is. DNS stands for Dynamic Naming Service. It’s been around for a while. It is why you are able to type in “” or “” instead of an IP address such as It is much easier to remember a name right? Than trying to remember (one of) Googles IP addresses such as: Not only that, DNS allows you to have multiple sites and servers under one name (ie:,, ect…).
The problem with DNS servers is that they are heavily used, and a heavily used server will be slower than a server with little load. Your ISP probably sets an optimal DNS for you, but not always. Also, if you are behind a rounter or NAT, it’s likely that it is acting as your DNS. Especially if you are at home behind a router, consumer level router products are pretty poor at handling DNS optimally. Either way, it is a good idea to find what is the best DNS for you!
There are two very popular methods. Both methods work, but one is preferred. There is the NameBench program on Google Code and the GRC program DNS Benchmark (which is the preferred product). Both are free and great, but I trust GRC greatly. Both are free, but only NameBench is open source.
Note though, that both program will take a while to execute. They need this time to test all their known servers and then some. So give it some time. Grab some tea and munchies, might be a while.

GRC always produces high quality software. This is no exception. Programmed 100% in assembly language, this program performs spectacularly. It only in a Windows version, but Linux users can easily (and completely) run it using Wine.
Running DNS Benchmark is just as simple as the previous program. All you do is run it and click “Run Benchmark”. Again, go get more tea. It will be a while.
It’s kind of fun seeing this program run as it shows you live results. So you see as all the bars and graphs move. Kind of fun. Your current DNS servers are marked with bold text and a darker thicker black border.
You can view the current results in many forms. There is the Response time bar graph, Status, Owner and by name. You can also look at the “Tabular data” which is basically the same thing as the graph form except in all text and in a excel style tabular data format (kinda boring, so stick with the graph format for maximum excitement).
The results of DNS Benchmark are similar to that of NameBench. Except that GRC’s software does not test Google’s DNS or any other special ones.
I originally ran this program, and made changes using it’s suggestion. As I found out, my router was acting like a DNS server and allowed me to have only one DNS server listed. It is very highly recommended that you have at least 2, preferably 3 servers listed, just in case if one goes down.
As seen in this result shot, I have already implemented it’s suggest changes so there is nothing new for me here. Also, GRC’s software will not give you pretty graphs like NameBench. The result you will get back is in this form as you see here: plain text (with some light formatting). Anything highlighted in green is a good thing; anything in Red is something that you should probably change. Though these are only suggestions, implement them of your own free will.
After turning off my routers DNS services, I saw a considerable response time increase in my internet browsing. Soon I’ll try and implement the use of Googles DNS and Ultra DNS as suggested by NameBench. We’ll see how more responsive those are. Only actual user testing will tell.
To run DNS Benchmark just open a terminal and type :

$ wine DNSBench.exe

HOWTO Devil's Tuning Fork under Wine

I've been in a gaming mood of the late and I much prefer to be able to run my games under Linux as opposed to having to reboot into Windows. That being said a game I've really enjoyed playing is Devil's Tuning Fork. It is a very unique first person indie game in which your character "sees" with their ears. It is being developed by a team of students at DePaul University in Chicago and it is a free download from the game's homepage.
Getting DTF working under Wine is fairly easy. To do so do the following:
  • Download & Install Wine version 1.1.32 (It crashes out under the latest version which is 1.1.35 as of my posting this, you may want to consider installing 1.1.32 along side the latest version instead of replacing it)
  • Download & Install DTF using Wine - Note when it tries to install DirectX it may fail, this is fine just click finish.
  • Download Wine Tricks
Now open your favorite terminal and navigate to the directory you saved the winetricks file to and run sh winetricks d3dx9 vcrun2008 xact dinput directplay at this point you will see lots of scrolling text as Wine Tricks works its magic, eventually it will prompt you to install VC2008 - install it.

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