We went to the Berkeley City Council meeting on September 9th (the day after we got home from Ontario, CA. where we were to attend some meetings and ECC) to set the record straight after the city council and our opponents (the body parts people such as the American Lung Association, American Heart Association, Tobacco Free Kids, etc. and the various other tobacco control groups) had done a hostile and violent bashing job on electronic cigarettes and vapor products at their previous meeting on the same topic on July the 8th. At the time only two people were present to oppose the ordinance. We had no reasonable expectation to “win” (in short; “because it’s Berkeley”) but needed to address it regardless. For about a month I put out the word and request to join us at the next council meeting, in various places including several specific to vapers in the San Francisco Bay Area. I had not expected a huge turn out but what we got was beyond disappointing. But let me get into that a little later in this report and start off with out strategy and what transpired.
This is probably going to be a lengthy summary of the second death of CA SB648 and one that is particularly difficult to explain in detail and with all its facets so I’ll try and keep it short and to the point because in reality, this is not any longer about a common sense bill that both vapers and industry supported but about how anti-tobacco groups (including the American Lung Association, American Heart Association, the American Cancer Society CAN, and California Medical Association) opposed a bill that would protect minors from having access to e-cigarettes via vending machines. It is about the true face of tobacco control and their true motives. I will spare you the long history of SB648 and how it went from the bill it once was into a bill that focused solely on vending machines and preventing minors from having access. Instead, I will go back to June 25th when we were at the State Capitol in Sacramento for the SB648 hearing in which we wholeheartedly supported the bill. You can read more about that on my wife’s website in the post about California SB648 Turns on a Definition.
The following is a breakdown and post analysis of the recent Oakley City Council meeting on the subject of banning the outdoor public use of electronic cigarettes (e-cigs, which we refer to as vapor products and Tobacco Harm Reduction alternatives to smoking traditional tobacco cigarettes). I am sad to provide this post analysis by highlighting the kind of blatant ignorance that not only us here, in Oakley, but millions of vapers (users of vapor products who are usually ex-smokers!) are confronted with on an almost daily basis. Let’s start you off with the video of the agenda item here. I will insert relevant parts of the recording along with time stamps.
Unfortunately it is much more than just a catchy title. It’s a reality for many of Autodesk’s current Media & Entertainment customers. And no, this is not a blog post to say “I told you so” to 3ds max or Softimage users but something of a much larger concern that I think is being overlooked because of the current and more specific destructive mayhem that the Autodesk disease is causing. This is about how I’m seeing a single company, single handedly, through mismanagement, incompetence, and above all, complete and utter ignorance, is doing rampant harm to a wider industry on which at least a part of their own existence depends. Combined with an unhealthy dose of disrespect for their customers this is nothing more than a recipe for disaster. A recipe that, unfortunately, is cooked up and served to its customers to chow down on.
After my recent “epic sized” blog post on ignorance about vaping a few people asked to see some pictures of my “vaping gear” in The Office. Well, I’m happy to oblige since I’ve now finally set things up in a way that work for me. It is, in part, thanks to one of our cats, Bece, that I ended up with more plastic display stands than I originally planned to get. As I was ordering a few things online she jumped up and walked straight over my MacBook Pro Retina. As I tried to get her to move her butt off of it she trampled a few times on the trackpad and it wasn’t until I placed the order that I noticed there were a few more things in there than I planned on. Ah, well… such things do happen. I guess she just likes vape gear and decided I should get more. Lots more. Perhaps I should “blame” her for all my vape related purchases, right Anyway, I have a few more mods, RBA’s and RDA’s on the way and thanks to Bece I know have enough holes to last me a while. Luckily those plastic stands were cheap so it didn’t result in any holes in my wallet.
Mr. Galstan, could you please list and describe the “known carcinogens” present in electronic cigarettes (or the e-Juice used in such)? The American Lung Association has repeatedly failed to do so, so why are you parroting them? Do you have any clue at all what is generally used in electronic cigarettes (or e-Juice)? I do. Many others do as well. And none of them are carcinogens. In fact, you might be surprised to learn that nicotine itself is not known nor has it ever been listed as a known carcinogen. If you are going to be a mouthpiece of an organization that has direct financial interests that are at total odds of people giving up smoking (after all, the association would no longer have a source of funding nor would they be able to pressure companies into handing them money for their “programs” which as a lot of us see it is not too different from mobster like extortion) then please be ready to back up your statements and claims with actual facts and substantiate them. Perhaps you may need to inquire at the American Lung Association so they can provide you with a canned statement that will, as per usual, not really answer the question.
n other words, the people who configured the Dreamhost network were a bunch of incompetent fools that didn’t know what they were doing. And I believe most of Dreamhost is still in the same frame of expertise these days. Instead of resolving an external MX record they used local DNS (cached perhaps, I don’t know, but certainly fully internal in a way it should have NEVER BEEN IN THE FIRST PLACE) and mail would go to any domain that was perceived to be local whether it was TRUE OR NOT. I outlined everything in detail, my findings, my repeated tests, and the full proof in the e-mail to them (because they couldn’t be bothered to take a call for which I offered to pay myself) and the response I got was that they COULD NOT FIX IT. In fact, let me just dig this up for the record because Dreamhost deserves some public shaming for this. “Jeff” responded back to me on January 5th 2007 saying…
I think Aware Bear Computer Repair (i.e. Andre Leite Alves) may have been pushed from its coveted number one position in the office thieves’ hall of shame by a company called Innovative Consulting Group (using the domain name groupiconsulting.com), founded and co-owned by the very unreliable and suspicious Ihtisham (Shami) Ul Haq. For the record, I have nothing to do with this fraudulent and illegally operating international ‘company’ called ICG, nor do I have any stake in any activity that either promotes, endorses, or encourages the outsourcing of software development (or any other such) activities.
Andre Alves has attempted to misuse (abuse) the DMCA in order to get my story of his fraudulent actions removed from the internet. In order to attempt that this little Aware Bear sent a DMCA complaint to a domain registrar where stefandidak.com, my domain, is registered. Unfortunately it once again shows that Andre Leite Alves has no clue about the law, in any way shape or form, and had no legal assistance in the process of writing that DMCA complaint (the plethora of errors and missing words in there is very similar to his hasted reply after I first confronted him with a demand he immediately stops using my material for his personal gains and business activities). It is starting to be clear that Andre Leite Alves is an amateur in every respect. Anyway, for your enjoyment and education I present to you the DMCA complaint as it was sent to the domain registrar. Needless to say, all the errors and mistakes are verbatim and by Andre Alves. I wonder if he will attempt to claim copyright on his DMCA complaint too now.
How pathetic must a person and its business be when they feel a need to paste themselves into a picture of my office and use it for their commercial purposes? The person you see Photoshopped (pasted) into the photograph of my home office is NOT ME. Why it isn’t me will become obvious when you read the following story regarding a case of blatantly pathetic commercial copyright infringement committed by AwareBear Computers (Pittsford Rochester New York, owned by Andre Leite Alves). The company, “Aware Bear” (home theater solutions, apple repair, pc repair, web design, and wedding photography), owned and run by Mr. Andre Leite Alves (not “Arthur Leite” which was used as the name to sign previous communications in a miserable attempt to ensure a court summons would be drawn up for the wrong name) claims to have been in business since 1993, has over 15 years of computer experience, and is serving the area of Rochester, NY (New York) and Pittsford, NY. Evidently, they haven’t learned much about legal matters and copyrights during that time.