The Written Peace:
Open Forum of March 17, 2005
But other and more parochial matters should draw some attention this evening, too.
The news wire service, blogScream, went through a day of testing on two other blogs: Shakespeare's Sister and Big Brass Blog, both of whose host bloggers are to be thanked profusely for putting up with the calibration nonsense that went on. Unfortunately, as of this evening, the framing is still not perfect, so the announcement of subscription availability will have to wait until tomorrow morning. It is, as the old saying goes, enough to make a preacher cuss.
And speaking of which, as those of you who regularly read the articles and threads know, although The Dark Wraith Forums moved to a nice, big, professionally run Web hosting service, the publishing interface offered by Blogger was retained to give users the same visual look and feel when posting comments. Unfortunately, that same look and feel has included ridiculous hang times when trying to go to the "Leave a comment" screen. Today, the Dark Wraith clocked an eleven minute wait to post a comment to a thread, at the end of which wait a screen came up saying that the attempt to get there had failed. The mixture of emotions that attended seeing that screen is not quite adequately captured by any Indo-European language known to the Wraith.
Two requests for assistance registered with Blogger over the past three days have been answered to date only by an autoresponder that indicated the Blogger support staff reads and responds to every issue submitted. Apparently, the autoresponder did indeed read the complaints filed, and its messages were the responses. Should the problems not be resolved by the beginning of next week, The Dark Wraith Forums will make one last major passage and abandon Blogger all together in favor of a service that actually works. That does not mean you will ever see HaloScan on this site. Alternatives are available, althought the transition could be more painful than the one for the blog, itself. Given the importance of preserving the comments already posted here over the past three months, and given the priority of having no limit on how many words a person can write in a given comment, the selection is narrow and the transition would be taxing.
It would not be as trying, however, as maintaining a certain level of decorum in posting in this site a final farewell to Blogger.
At some point, these technical aspects of blogging will diminish in importance and noticeability. That will be nice. Until then, the Dark Wraith asks your forebearance.
And for the evening, the topics for comments are many. Mr. Bush's nomination of Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz to head the World Bank has been met by the planet outside of Washington, D.C., with something approaching "you are joking, right?" from much of the civilized (and even uncivilized) world. In all fairness, though, the Japanese expressed something rather like genuine excitement about Mr. Wolfowitz's nomination. It is possible, given the diffiulties in translation, that the Japanese believed that they heard of Mr. Wolfowitz's marination and believed his head was to be served on a platter with sauce Bernaise.
Gasoline prices have hit an all-time high, now. This means you should watch the most recent month's consumer price index, which will be published shortly. Watch for two things: first, the government will do everything it can to focus on the "core" CPI, which excludes food and energy; and second, watch for a complete CPI that looks suspiciously—perhaps even laughably—low. Anecdotally, people around the country have seen prices on many consumer items going up quite noticeably for months, now; but the Bureau of Labor Statistics keeps grinding out monthly CPIs that generally make it look like inflation is just as tame as it can be. Only time will tell if the BLS wishes to continue to present numerical evidence contrary to both consumers' sense of what is going on and how the Federal Reserve is reacting to the threat of inflation, despite Greenspan's claims that inflation remains under control.
Tonight, kick back, click on the "Comment" tag, then take a nap while Blogger decides whether it's going to service your request before or after the next ice age. But just to be on the safe side, you might want to keep your coat at your side; it could get mighty cold before you make it to that "Leave a comment" screen.
Naw, don't worry: it'll work just fine this evening. Really. It will.
The Dark Wraith will say anything to get a good thread started.