Archive for February, 2008

I was made aware of this fascinating blog post by Greg Boyd, Random Reflections – Greg Boyd: A Discussion With Chuck Colson and Shane Claiborne, from a friend’s blog post, Faith and Politics.

Chuck Colson was one of the first Christian writers I read and I had tremendous respect for him. But the more I read his work, especially his columns in Christianity Today the more I disagree with him.  From Greg Boyd’s post.

Chuck believes Christians have a “dual allegiance” to God and country. I and Shane argued that the only allegiance followers of Jesus should have is to Jesus. We cannot “serve two masters.”

Chuck believes that Christians have a duty to vote for pro-life candidates. In fact, in his book God & Government he says that Christians who support candidates who aren’t pro-life “have taken themselves out of fellowship with us” (p.329).

Apparently Shane Claiborne chose not to engage directly in the arguments but instead told stories like this really interesting one.

The most insightful, I thought, was when he responded to Colson’s citation of Bonhoeffer’s attempt to assassinate Hitler as an example of how Christians need to participate in politics and sometimes resort to violence. Shane told a story (of course) of a film he watched that interviewed Hitler’s chief secretary. She said that it was “miraculous” how Hitler escaped unharmed when the bomb Bonhoeffer’s group planted exploded. This reinforced Hitler’s sense of divine mission at a time when it was wavering and encouraged him to carry out his genocidal programs more enthusiastically. Shane said that as much as he respects Bonhoeffer, “the cross lost when that bomb went off.” Wow.

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San Jose Mercury News

 | February 26, 2008 7:59 PM

San Jose Mercury NewsMy mom loves getting the daily newspaper so whenever she stays with us I get a subscription. It’s been nice getting the San Jose Mercury New and learning more about the local news.

I got a 50% off the regular rate of $4 per week from DiscountedNewspaper.com for 10 weeks which works out to $20 (sometimes I see flyers for $1 per week but I didn’t have one at the time). And today I signed up for Easy Pay using the offer code “EP 567” so that I can get a $15 Safeway Gift Card. So in the end I paid $5 for 10 weeks which is not bad. Holman, the customer service representative, said that I would continue to be billed after the initial 10 weeks at the $2 per week rate but I kind of don’t believe him.

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There is now a free service to get off mailing lists.  It’s actually run by the Direct Marketing Association so they actually try to discourage you from using it.  Anyway I used it and registered my name along with Ji Seon’s, Dylan’s and my sister and brother-in-law who also still get junk mail at my address.

How To Get Off A Mailing List – Consumer Assistance

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MacBookToday Apple announced an upgrade to their MacBook and MacBook Pro line. This after only three months since I bought my MacBook! 🙁

Anyway this is good news for others thinking of buying a new MacBook or MacBook Pro.

Macworld | Apple unveils new MacBook and MacBook Pro

Apple on Tuesday introduced new models of its consumer-level MacBook and high-end MacBook Pro laptops, adding the newly unveiled Penryn chips to its portable line and boosting processor speeds. In addition, the MacBook Pro adopts the MultiTouch trackpad first introduced in Apple’s MacBook Air laptop.

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Recently I have been applying for various online savings accounts and been rejected each time for security purposes. I started wondering if there is an issue with the information in my credit report so I went to AnnualCreditReport.com to get my free credit report. This proved to be an incredibly frustrating experience.

You can choose up to three credit reporting companies to get your credit report. I chose all three. For each reporting company you chose you are redirected to their website to get your free credit report.

TransUnionThe first one was the worst, TransUnion. When I was redirected to their site they told me that they an online account for me though I don’t remember ever creating one. I tried to login but it did not work. I then tried recovering my username by entering my SSN and last name but it said it did not recognize. I tried getting online help but there was no way to do this. Finally after clicking on many links and pages I found a phone number to call, (800) 916-8800. Using this number I was able to order a free credit report but they were not able to help me with my online login issue. They gave me another number, (800) 493-2392 (option 1, then option 3) which is for TrueCredit, the online fulfillment arm of TransUnion.

When I called TrueCredit they told me that they had an account with my SSN but it had a different name! They then told me to call TransUnion customer service at (866) 212-2170. They told me an account had been created in 2003 and that the last name is “Jordan” for my SSN.

I was advised to put a Fraud Alert on my account and to call the TransUnion fraud department, (800) 680-7289.

ExperianThe next one was Experian. Getting the credit report involved many screens including a security check which I thought for sure I’d fail since I had started this in the first place because of security check failures with other banks. Fortunately this succeeded and I got a credit report.

EquifaxThe last one was Equifax. When I was redirected to their site they immediately told me something was wrong and provided me with a form to fill out and mail in to get my credit report.

On my Experian credit report I found a few accounts that I did not even know were still open. I closed them immediately.

  1. Chase Rewards Plus Visa, (800) 955-9900
  2. TD Bank Visa/Debit Card?, (800) 747-7000
  3. Home Depot (THD/CBSD) Credit Card, (866) 202-5490

Then my mortgage broker told me I shouldn’t have done that, that it will actually hurt my credit score so I had to reopen them.

Overall this experience was quite alarming and makes me wonder about how safe my credit information is. What’s frustrating is there seems to be plenty of security that prevents me from accessing my information but not enough security to prevent my identity from being compromised by others!

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Configuring Vista for Automatic Login

 | February 25, 2008 9:50 PM

Windows VistaVista, compared to XP, makes it a little less obvious how to configure automatic login, probably because of security reasons.

On my troubled Acer laptop I changed the name of the administrator user to my name and added a strong password. Then I created a standard user account for the kids with no password and automatic login.

Configure Vista For Automatic Logon

To do so, click Start and type netplwiz in the Search field and then press Enter. Click Continue when the User Account Control window appears. From the User Accounts window that appears, verify that your own user account is selected. Clear the Users must enter a username and password to use this computer option and click OK. Provide the password for your user account when prompted and restart your computer. Vista will automatically log on with your user account.

Microsoft also has an article on how to do this called Turn on automatic logon.  The instructions are almost exactly the same except Microsoft suggests enter control userpasswords2 in the Search box. This program requires authentication unlike netplwz.

To turn off automatic login just check the Users must enter a username and password to use this computer option.

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In the late afternoon on Friday, February 22 we celebrated my nephew Jacob being 100 days old. We bought a traditional Korean rice cake and took lots of photos. These photos were all taken by my brother-in-law, Jacob’s father. You can see more photos at the album Jacob’s 100 Day Celebration.

Jacob's rice cake

Catherine and Carl and Jacob

Isaac, Dylan, Victoria, Jacob

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