Peace in Banda Aceh

(Originally published at Progressive Blog Alliance Headquarters)

Banda gained the attention of people around the world when a devastating Tsunami hit last December. People around the world contributed to help with relief efforts, but Banda Aceh has slowly slipped from people’s consciousness. Now, over half a year later, it returns to the news.

Banda Aceh suffered not only from the Tsunami, but from years of armed conflict. The international press is reporting that a new peace treaty has been signed in Banda Aceh. Two years ago, a peace deal was signed, which fell apart, so we shall see what happens with this peace treaty.

The devastation of the Tsunami on top of the devastation of the war has left many orphans. Bata Industries makes flip-flops in its factory in Jakarta. They were designed by orphans of the Tsunami and profits from the sale go to support the Schools for Aceh Foundation.

In North America, you can purchase these flip-flops through No Sweat!. No Sweat! is a company providing 100% union made apparel. If you click on the link, I get a commission on the sales. However, I would also encourage each of you that has a blog to set up a link to promote their products.

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Comforting the distressed

I sit on the porch, listen to the thunder and watch the rain. Lying next to me, asleep, is my three-year-old daughter. She has been fighting a horrible fever the past few days, and my life has been thrown out of whack by worrying about her, and not getting enough sleep. She seems to be over the worst of it now, and it was probably just one of those childhood illnesses, but still it hurts to see her suffer and still I worry how bad she has had this fever.

Meanwhile, a friend is sitting by the side of her father. He has been waging a fierce battle against cancer and it appears as if the battle is nearly over. Another friend has traveled out of state to visit her aunt who has just gotten out of the hospital.

I think about my blogging, and how people have told me not to bury the lead. Have I done that here? What is the lead anyways? It is something about these moments being pieces of the patchwork quilts of our lives. It is about when you get right down to it, caring for the people around us is what matters. There is the old saying that all politics is personal. It is these moments that form, or at least should form, our political sensibilities.

No Sweat

I've justed signed up to be an affliate of No Sweat.

No Sweat

Check them out. More soon.

Thought for today

President Bush has asked that the Senate conduct hearings in a fair and timely manner concerning the confirmation of Judge John Roberts.

Given our nation's concern about not allowing extremists new opportunities to damage our country, I hope that Judge Roberts' hearings are as fair and timely as the hearings of those detained at Guantanamo Bay.

Updating CivicSpace Sites

When my wife ran for State Representative, I set up a domain, where I could easily host many CivicSpace sites. Over time, it has gone from a handful of sites, mostly in Drupal 4.4 running on a couple different Windows 2000 servers with IIS in peoples houses to over three dozen sites running a collection of versions of CivicSpace on a resellers account at a reliable hosting service.

Part of my approach has been to use a shared directory for the files and a shared database. The shared database is accomplished using the db_prefix variable for CivicSpace. As a general rule, I set up one database for each shared directory. For example, I had one database for version for CivicSpace, another for CivicSpace, a third for CivicSpace 0.8.1 and then a few special databases. Each site was then set up with its own section for its files, including files for theme_editor. As a general rule, each site uses the box_grey theme, customized through theme_editor.

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