extensive stream of explatives deleted

So, 4:20, about an hour-hour and a half after I got a grip on my insomnia and fell asleep.
The sound of water drumming on hollow surfaces.
My tank sprung a new leak. On the same seam that blew out when I first filled the tank.
I can not afford this crap.
A week ago, I could have easily transferred back to the 10 gallon tank I started with.
I had my pleco and the beta, and while the tank was too small for the pleco, it would have been okay.
Now I've got two different mobile fish schools, the corys and the gourami, as well as the beta and the pleco. I have to buy a new tank and I just don't have the cash. Well, I do have the cash, but I'm moving in less than half a month and I'm already sweating about the cost of a move and a new apartment. I mean seriously, I got my job just barely in time to manage the move. I did not need the expense of a new tank just now. Especially since I haven't heard back from any ofthe more promising alternate jobs I've applied for.

It could have been worse. It could have happened either 12 hours earlier or later, in which case, approximately 20 gallons of water would have exited the tank into my bedroom. Also, all of my fish are facilitative air breathers. Also, petshop opens at 9:00 am. I'm scheduled to go to work at... 9:AM. This was just Lord Murphy offering a shot across the bow, not a full fledged attack, but still. Ugh.

I probably will repair this tank again, after the move. Then I'll set it up outside and let it have a week to prove itself sound before considering moving it back in the house.

Hee, I had just put the old tank into storage. I guess I should go get it out again.

Now I just have to work out what expenses to shove aside to get the money for a 20 or 30 gallon tank to hold my extended set of fishes.

Final disposition of my fish: the betta, the pleco, and the corys are all in the 30 gallon tank with only the bottom quarter actually filled. There is no good place to put the pleco since it jumps when it gets agitated.
The rest of my Gourami (bettas are actually in the gourami family.) are in the 10 gallon tank with the filter running. I may transfer the Pleco to that tank if I can work out a reasonable method of keeping it in there. It is a very large fish and will produce a proportionately large amount of fish poop. My largest worry is that the seam will spring another leak, but with the lower water level, there is a proportionately lower pressure on the seams of the tank. Ah, I think I've worked out a method of keeping the pleco in the tank... I go now.

The other post.


I bought a pair of size 40 pants today. They don't fit perfectly, or at least their fit isn't my preferred fit, but they fit about the way that 42s fit me a year and a half ago.
I've not worn a size 40 since either late high school or early college for reference.

Not dieting by the way. Dieting doesn't actually work for most people (like massively most people even in the mid range. You can lose weight via dieting, but you are almost guaranteed not to keep it off over even the middle term unless you join a group that has an AA level of obtrusiveness in your life. )

Also, this morning, I weighed in at my lowest weight since freshman year of college (when I lost about 10 lbs. I've now beaten that level and I'm in overall better shape than I was then too.)

cat post 2

This is not the other post.
My gourami have finally worked out their dominance issues and seem to be schooling now. It looks like they were trying to pick on my corys. The corys appear to have decided that the gourami were trying to school with them and started following the gourami around. The gourami went off to find their own place, but now every so often the cory school will go over and follow the gourami school around.
I really need a video camera instead of a regular camera for my fish.

Fish: The Michael Style Cat Post


So I got a new tank the other day. I'd been intending on waiting for PetCo to have another dollar a gallon sale but I was at the goodwill (and ooh, another story to tell; next post) looking for av cables, old video games, and such when I saw this 29 gallon tall tank sitting there for 20 bucks. Well, I bought it. Rule one for buying used tanks? What you are really buying is the glass and the plastic forms around the tank. The first thing you should do with any used tank is grab your razor and remove all of the sealant. Then you pull out your handy tube of aquarium sealant (which really should come in a caulk gun type tube...) and rebuild your tank. I know this rule. I usually live this rule.
If you aren't going to recaulk your used tank then at the least you should always set it up in the kitchen or somewhere so that you can check for leaks.

I know these rules, and I usually use them. This time I was in a hurry to get to work.
I tore my tank down into my emergency tank system and set up the new tank on the stand in my room. I filled it with water and went to the pet shop to grab some gravel and some new fishes.

I came back to find that an entire seam was blown. It dropped 3-4 gallons into my room in forty five minutes. So I tore it down and resetup my old tank. Then I went to work (and was about 10 minutes late. Not that anyone noticed, and I'm more likely to be yelled at for the overtime I have than being late... So need a different job...)

Got home, searched for my sealant, stripped down the tank and sealed it. I let it cure overnight then filled it full of water in the kitchen and let it sit over another night. No leaks, so I set it up in my room.

Over the last week or so I've added several fish to it, going from my lone pleco to the pleco, 4 blue gourami (either 3 blue spotted and one opaline or 2 and 2. All advertised as opalines and they are the same species anyway), 4 spotted corys, and a female beta.

fish tank new
Notice the 30-60 filter in the back... I tend to over filter. That was my 10 gallon's filter.

The blue tube in front of the tank is my first fruit fly ( d. hydei instead of d. melanogaster which I really would have preferred. I bought my two larger gourami because none of my fish were big enough to eat the larger flies, though everyone likes the maggots. The big gourami are less adventurous than the little ones and don't seem to be redily taking the flies either.) The mason jar contains my new colony. We'll see if my growth medium works well for fruit flies. (Cornmeal, molasses, agar, apple cider vinegar, and table sugar.)

I've got better pictures of the other things in the tank. I'll talk about them when it becomes relevant.

whole tank 2

Here's a somewhat blurry picture mostly of the pleco. The big white sheet of plastic was initially from my 10 gallon tank to provide the beta with a good place to sit outside of the current since she was spending a lot of time behind the lip of my filter. When I added the larger gourami I returned the plastic to the tank so that there would be something to break line of sight up in the top of the tank so that aggressive behaviors don't build up too much.
Notice the black strip in the back? That's the thermometer that came with the tank. I forgot to remove it, and I prefer my submerged thermometer anyway.

the beast

That is my pleco. (S)he's a big one. Of course, it has jumped out of the tank twice, both of which times it was all dry and stationary by the time I found it. Of course, as an armored cat, it both breathes air directly and it doesn't lose too much water through its scales, so I popped it back into the tank each time and it was fine. My working theory is that it is afraid of the corys.

whole tank 3

The whole tank from a better angle. I so need to get a power cord or better batteries for my camera so I can take more time with my pictures.
The dark fish shaped thing at the bottom is actually one of my dad's clay fish. I put it in there to help break up low area LOS for anyone who decides to spend time down low. (The corys sleep at the bottom, the gourami sometimes search the gravel for food, and the beta doesn't seem to prefer any level of the tank.)

All four of the corys with the pleco looming in the backrground. I've also transferred one of my dracoliches to the tank. Aquarium decorations on the scale a tank this size needs are expensive. (I've got a few I want, all of which are in the $40-$50 range except for a smallish tori gate structure that wouldn't do too much for anyone but the corys who don't seem to really care about hiding as they spend most of their time in the water column.)


With the exception of the corys, my beta moves around more than any of my other fish (she moves more continuously, they are more frantic about it) so she was hard to photograph mostly. The lighting is due to where the sun was when I took this shot. She's much prettier than most of the other betas that the shop had. Female or standard male. Female betas behave a lot like female guppies. Which is understandable since they fill similar niches. She is less aggressive than guppies which would already be trying to eat my fingers if I stuck them in the water.)


My first attempt to get a decent picture of the gourami.

stage hog

Second attempt. Foreground? The beta. She darted into the frame as I was taking the shot.


Finally all four of them, though not at the best possible angles...


Hum, a brief on my recent life since I'm not posting much.

Bike broke. Not fixable for less than price of bike.
Got job.
Bought sunglasses.
Looked in mirror.
Should see optometrist. Probably need real glasses. Would look good in real glasses.
Orange sun glasses very cool.
Looking for better apartment/house.
Looking for better job. Should focus on job finding. Has job, not so good really.
Gave broken bike to people who fix bikes to fund a public access bike garage.
Bought new bike from same people.
Way better than old bike
Have some money left for customization.
Bought minis.
Nothing spectacular.
Games Workshop changed how they package bits again. New system sucks.
Did I mention I like the way I look in glasses?
And in Chinese peasant's hat?
New bike much faster than old bike.
Job still sucks.
Lots of hours, specific ones change from week to week. That is not a lovely thing.
Bought fish.
Fish okay.
Bought flightless (but not wingless) fruit flies for fish.
Flies marginally too large for fish to eat.
Not so good.
Need to feed fish so they can eat flies.
Will culture new flies.
Chain Golem looks like giant worm creature.
Republic continues to stagger down path. Not sure if it will make it to the end in one piece. Who knows?
Orange lenses make contrast much better than naked eyes. Can see much better even in fairly low light.
Failed to buy 99 cent copy of super mario world in time. Alas. At least I have beaten the game all the way through a few times.
Bought Disegia 2
Playing World of Warcraft.
Making large sums of gold for small efforts.
Undid most of good through accidental bid on expensive item. Hopefully I can resell it.
Still have about half of gold, plus I might not win item, plus I have many auctions I expect to sell and give new gold.
Can not find Mug O'Hurt.
Mug O'Hurt is part of current desired paladin costume. Eventually though, will have Carmen Sandiego costume.
D&D 4.0 Inspires many internet wank fests.
Loud claim that this ability or that ability is broken.
Mostly is stupid.
Though the laser paladin is pretty sweet.
I gripe about silly rules issue.
It turns out that I just can't read my native tongue.
This works quite well with my inability to speak it.
Have small plastic horsies for D&D.
I maybe killed some new trees.
I forgot to water them for too many hours.
Their roots were damaged in the acquisition, so we will see.
Orange glasses, very cool.
Buffy season 8 still good.
Still on track to lead up to Fray or Frey or whatever. Not so much with loving that.
Don't know if Fray is good or bad. Just dislike the situation that lead to it.
No mater what Tolkien said, we should not have to give up much of what is beautiful to defeat that which is evil.
The world doesn't really work that way.
Um there is a thing that I predicted.
I did not tell anyone.
I will not tell anyone what it is.
Except if they have read at least to the end of Wolves at the Gate.
Otherwise spoiler!
Buffyverse still doesn't seem to have bisexuals.
Dawn's parts in the comic have quit nodding to real physics.
Read two different books that were honoring Heinlein.
Names are great.
One of them riffed on Friday.
Awesome joke about the ridiculous sproing.
The other one became a series of books.
I read the last one first without realizing it was part of a series.
SRSLY PUBLISHERS: Label these things.
New Myth book fairly good except all of the things that weren't.
Final analysis of the contest was stupid and wrong.
Skeeve did not behave poorly.
He may not have taken the absolute best route to his goal, but everything he did was justified.
His attempt to (deleted) should not have been out of bounds. Since the target of said action was a direct threat to the continued survival of his client, drying to (deleted) is the least that he should have done.
Also, the fact that he didn't set up a long term solution while trying to both keep his client alive and win the contest, that shouldn't count against him.
It is called triage.
He could have dealt with the longer term problems after making sure his client was immediately safe.
Any other action would have unnecessarily endangered his client.
Also, his so called friends treated him really unfairly.
Especially since with one exception, he had been in contact with them during his hiatus.
The resentment in the book was badly misplaced. Only three characters would have been even marginally justified, and two of those (Pookie and Spyder) weren't resentful.
2:40. Good night.

Fey Step Again


Okay, I'm not sure that there is anyone who reads this blog except possibly Pope Guilty, Eva and Alan who are up to date on the system enough to have an opinion on this, but RE: 4th edition? Fey Step is not broken. It does not make the ELadrin a world destroying race, and If containment system and home defense design are influenced by it, it is no more than any of a hundred different creatures or powers in 3.5. Oh noes, my castle that had to be built to resist incorporeal creatures and designed to ward off flying creatures has to have a 26 foot tall wall!
Jails have to have isolation or dark rooms to contain them! I mean it isn't like you had to go to special lengths to confine classes in 3.5 at all. A soreceror never had Knock.

THe biggest problem with Fey Step? A bunch of tired old traps have to be revamped or retired. But then traps and challenges in 4.0 are supposed to be active and dynamic things instead of the passive traps that infested previous editions.

Lord, why couldn't he have been the King of Pants?


Dear the internet. I have an announcement for you.
At the beep...


It is now pantsless-o'clock.
Thank you.
That will be all.

a month late, but here:


My reading list (I need to annotate soon) This is, as always, only new reads.

1. Ex Mechana 3 Er, it’s been 3 months since I read this. I recall it was fairly enjoyable, though maybe not as good as book one and two.
2. Rogue Angel Destiny Alex Archer Interesting adventure story. Main character seems to have a bit much of the super human thing going on even before she gets the sword. Second, possibly third time in a short while that La Bete has featured in a book I’ve read.
3. Terrier Tamora Pierce Well, this is another book by Tamora Pierce. I’m hoping for another story with this character. *edit March 17* Whoo there is another one on the way!
4. Peeps Scott Westerfeld Wonderful. I ran into Westerfeld’s work in his adult stuff. Nice solid SF. His YA is brilliant. Parasite driven vampirism. Beautiful essays on parasites every other chapter. Happyness.
5. The Eternals Neil Gaiman Writing is strong, don’t care about the characters. I’m not really a Marvel or DC person. I’ve got characters I like to read, but they weren’t here.
6. Undertow Elizabeth Bear Not my favorite Elizabeth Bear, but Elizabeth Bear, so better than my favorite books by any number of other artists.
7. Eve Proto Mecha Lusen, Lichtner, and Garza Decent graphic novel/comic book. I hope to hunt down the rest of the story eventually. The title character is massively malformed has a pretty standard comic book female’s proportions. She’s a robot, so the fact that this doesn’t mean that she is inherently non-functional like biological versions of the body type would be is cancelled out by the fact that there is no good reason for the old guy who built her to make her that way. Like the story, other than my gripe about EVE herself, I like the artwork. Oh gods, I just went to check on the other female characters (reasonable physiques) and noticed that in several pictures, EVE’s breasts appear to have been stuck on as an afterthought. Not Youngbloods or Gen 13 bad, but bad.
8. Eternal War A series of space marine themed warhammer 40k comics. *Shrugs* They get the feel of the setting at least.
9. The Last Days Scott Westerfeld I return to my burgeoning love of Mr. Westerfeld’s YA work. It doesn’t use the parasitology lecture framing device I liked so much in Peeps, but it is a fine addition to his body of work in the Peeps world, even if it does
10. The Book of Night With Moon Diane Duane This is an auxiliary book in the Young Wizards series. It has brief appearances by the main series protagonists, but it focuses on the cats who maintain the world gates. An interesting look at some of the non-human wizards and the shape of the Choice of some of the other creatures. (Not my favorite of the Choices, but still neat.)
11. Jennifer Government Max Barry I’ve been meaning to read this one for a while, and almost decided that it wasn’t worth the hype when Mr. Barry brought my main gripe to the front and center. Part way through the book, he has one of the characters reading The Space Merchants and commenting on it. If he hadn’t done that, I think I would have had a hard time breaking away from the parallels between the two books. All in all it is a competent to good near future story in the low chrome cyberpunk tradition.
12. Sing the Four Quarters Tanya Huff. First of the Quarters novels, with a realistic teen to young adult protagonist. (Meaning I wanted to strangle her more than occasionally.) Next book in the set is set elsewhere with different people, which isn’t best in life, but what are you going to do? Not every day can be pillaging and such.
13. Buffy the Vampire Slayer Comics Pale Reflections, Crash Test Demons, and Bad Blood Sort of in the middle of a story here, but it is set before the parts of Buffy I’ve watched at this point.
14. Buffy the Vampire Slayer Comics Willow and Tara Amber Benson et al. I liked this set better than the more standard Buffy comics, but then I’m pretty sure that Willow and Tara are my favorite characters in the setting.
15 Megatokyo Volume 5 Fred Gallagher I’ve been reading Megatokyo since the middle of college. No surprises here. I think I’ve said this before, but MT works much better as a manga than as a web comic. (Which makes sense, as Fred wanted to make a manga.)
16. Forge of the Mindslayers Tim Waggoner Second book of the Blade of the Flame series, quite possibly my favorite Eberron material. This one delved further into Diran and Ghagi’s pasts and demonstrated the sort of special project that got spun and abandoned during the Last War.
17. The Sea of Death Tim Waggoner 3rd book of the blade of the Flame series. Vol’s running a Xanatos Gambit edging into Xanatos Roulette here. I’m really hoping for more Dirian and Ghagi books.
18. The Sagittarius Command R.M. Meluch This is the third Merrimack book. I’m pretty sure I assumed that Meluch was a guy in my first writeup of her work. Why? Not because she writes space combat, but because I internalized Asimov’s rant about women hiding their names as initials and assumed that everyone else did too, and because the ending used a plot device that annoys me a lot, one that I associate with male writers because it was developed and made badly stale by male writers at least 40 years before I was born. Oh yeah, I like this book a lot (I liked the first book except for the last 20 pages or less.)
19. Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Eight 1-12 Assorted authors. I’m enjoying this series. So far it has been hit or miss for the tone of the best of Buffy. Book 12 has the most perfect reveal scene in the series so far, though the early scene with Buffy monologuing at Dawn is close, and Willow’s first appearance is awesome. (I so want to quote it, but that would spoil one of the better scenes in the early series.) Even if I’m not sure that she or Buffy deserves all of her lines later on. There is some big time healing that needs to happen to make their relationship make sense. Same as the end of Season 7.)
20. Midnighters: The Secret Hour Scott Westerfeld I’m not as enthralled with this one as with the Peeps universe. Still, good solid YA writing. I’ll give the whole series a chance.
21. Reader and Raelynx Sharon Shinn Another 12 houses book with the requsite fated romance story. This one focuses on the last core member of the party, and the Princess he just spent a year escorting across the country. The war that the series has been building toward happens, the bad guys die, and Sennith once again hijacks the end of the book. *sigh* I like her character. I just wish that when it isn’t her book, the last chapter wouldn’t be all about her.
22. Queen of the Slayers Nancy Holder Ugh. A few major slips in characterization. Major annoying style issues. Whenever she refers to Buffy outside of dialogue it is “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.” Seriously? Ugh. If she had called her Buffy? We would have known just who it was. Including a main character’s title in every reference doesn’t work. It is a distancing tool you use for secondary characters and even then you drop it if they are emotionally close to the protagonist, unless it is a major issue for the protags. (See the Honor Harrington books. Honor uses titles with her closest friends until she starts growing up Very few exceptions. The narrator? Only when they are on their own, and even then only if they are briefly in view. The titles game is played fairly well to show how Honor (and often we) are supposed to feel about a character. Watch the narrator’s naming of White Haven and Hemphill through the series. (Also? Wikipedia totally screws Hemphill. She’s an important antagonist for the first 3/4ths of the series, and an important ally in the rest.) Also? Nothing happened before Xander’s eyes. He doesn’t have eyes. He has eye. Find a different non-incongruous turn of phrase.)
23. Seven Seasons of Buffy Glenn Yeffeth (ed) A series of essays by SF and F writers on Buffy the Vampire slayer. Fairly enjoyable literary analysis, even if occasionally an author would ignore all of the points that contradicted their thesis.
24. To Visit the Queen Diane Duane As much as I like the young wizards books, there is something particularly neat about reading Rhiow’s viewpoint. Even though she isn’t human, she has a more adult worldview, and seeing how she deals with the Lone Power’s more subtle attacks throughout this book is nice. I’d like to have had a little more resolution of what went on with her human, though I suspect that the next book (which I’m not sure got published. I know back before I was reading her material, there was a push to get it funded without going through her publisher, but it was sort of peripheral to my awareness at the time, with not recognizing the name (even though I’d read her work before.) The two youngest cats could have had another five thousand words to work through their issues as well. That probably would have strengthened that plot for me. All in all, a good book though.
25 Comic Party Book 2 Sekihiko Inui I bought the first book in this series on deep discount several years ago. I’d not bad, but if the library hadn’t had book two I’d probably not have bothered with it.
26. Chobits Book 1 Clamp Hurm... Pretty goy gets female android servant manga so far. Reasonably nice artwork, nothing particularly special. Both this and Comic party use a visual vocabulary that doesn’t quite click with me.
27. Class Dis-Mythed Robert Asprin and Jody Lynn Nye These new Myth books are, in my opinion, not as strong as the best of the earlier books. That said, I am enjoying the Skeeve books in the new set. Skeeve as teacher is neat, and I’m really looking forward to the upcoming book that brings the characters back together. I do wish that these books did the traditional checking back in that the earlier books did whenever we were following only one portion of the cast. Also? The Bunny/Skeeve thing needs to be resolved between them (it has been resolved between all of the other characters, she needs to sit the boy down and give him a good talking to.)
28. Myth-Gotten Gains Robert Asprin and Jody Lynn Nye An Aahz book. I think that Aahz has grown more as a character since the lead up to the dissolution of Myth-inc. I’m not as fond of his stories, even though they do a lot more character building than the Skeeve stories do. This book felt very much like it was there solely to demonstrate Aahz’s new personality.
29. Night Life Catlin Kettredge Supernatural Urban Fantasy. (Not necessarily in the genre romance category by the same name. Not sure yet.) Werewolf Cop in a world where Werewolves are known, if somewhat of an underclass. I like the main character, the setting, and the story. I wasn’t particularly convinced by the love interest, or at least he’s not the sort of guy I understand girls being into. Not a Harry Dresden book, but a very solid first novel. Ketteredge is definitely an author to be watching out for. (I’m pretty sure I heard about this one on Scalzi’s Big Idea posts.)
30. Small Favors Jim Butcher
31. Shalom Japan
32. Rogue Angel: Solomon’s Jar Alex Archer
33. Good as Lily Derek Kirk Kim and Jesse Hamm Well, this is from DC’s Minx imprint, part of the attempt to bring more girls to comics by writing things that aren’t primarily male warrior fantasies and deformed women in very small amounts of spandex. A revitalization of the non-superhero comic world. I happened to like Grace’s attempts to deal with her younger and older selves, but the copy I read had a serious misprint. Pages 97-128 were missing, replaced with 65-96. Unfortunately, this covered a lot of the character growth that lead to the story’s resolutions.
34. Rogue Angel: The Chosen Alex Archer
35. Rogue Angel: The Spider Stone Alex Archer
36. Rogue Angel: Forbidden City Alex Archer
37. Going Postal Terry Pratchett
38. Hogfather Terry Pratchett
39. Night Watch Terry Pratchett
40. Little Brother Cory Doctrow
41. Clubbing Andi Watson, Josh Howard
42. Dragonmarked Keith Baker Michelle Lyons, C.A. Suleiman
43. The Artemis Fowl Files Eoin Colfer
44. Fun Home Alison Bechdel
45. Victory Conditions Elizabeth Moon
46. Captain’s Fury Jim Butcher
47. Dust Elizabeth Bear
48. Song in the Silence Elizabeth Kerner
49. The Lesser Kindred Elizabeth Kerner
50. Redeeming the Lost Elizabeth Kerner
51. Maus Art Speigleman
52. Undertown 1 Jim Pascoe and Jake Myler
53. .hack Rei Izumi and Tatsuya Hamazaki
54. Inverloch Sarah Ellerton
55. Rolling Thunder John Varley
56. First Truth Dawn Cook
57. Hidden Truth Dawn Cook
58. Forgotten Truth Dawn Cook
59. Lost Truth Dawn Cook
60. Human Resources
61. Kris Longknife Mutineer Mike Shepherd
62. Gear School Gallardo et al.
63. Kris Longknife Deserter Mike Shepherd
64. Kris Longknife Defiant Mike Shepherd
65. Kris Longknife Resokute Mike Shepherd
66. Kris Longknife Audacious Mike Shepherd
67. Jhereg Steven Brust
68. Yendi Steven Brust
69. Teckla Steven Brust

Why won't Jessie Helms just hurry up and.. .oh right...


Also, the world is a measurably better place than it was last week. Another one of the bad guys kicked it. Bye bye Mr. Helms.


I keep seeing claims that there are no conservative commenters on boingboing. Usually by someone who was just disemvowelled. Seriously? There's not a lot of neo-con/RR commenters on BoingBoing. But believe it or not, the neo-cons and their masters/lapdogs in the RR (depending on the political era) are not the sole source of conservative word dumps in America. You've got classical conservatives (probably the least vile of the bunch. I've got a few friends who are classical conservatives, and while they do hold some silly and wrongheaded, often destructive beliefs, they don't do so out of spite. They do so because they are silly and wrongheaded) who are still members of the Republican Party. You also have libertarians. I don't know what the word means over in Europe, but in the US of A, Libertarian is a sub or superset of Randian Objectivist, meaning they are conservatives. Their political positions are fairly shallow and immature, the sort of thing that, along with Marxism and most branches of Anarchism, work really well on paper and lead to way more misery than good when actually applied to the real world. (The difference between this and a neo-con? Um... oh right, the libertarians aren't joined at the hip to the RR, the libertarians don't go for bigger govt spending and massive increases in the federal bureaucracy, and the libertarians don't have to worry about the feasibility of their ideas because they aren't anywhere near being able to get a coalition behind their position, or even a Roveian 50+1.

Action Points mark meh

*edit* Yeah, I misread the section on action points. They refresh after the extended rest not the brief rest. Nevermind *end edit*
There are some systems in D&D 4th edition that make little or no sense to me. Action points spring to the forefront.
Until you hit Paragon level, there isn't a reason to ever aim for a milestone to get extra action points, and not all of the paragon classes have abilities that make hording action points worth while.
Essentially, if you take a five minute break after an encounter, you lose all of your action points and regain your base action point. If you don't take that break, then after every second encounter, you gain a new action point. But, except in a very few cases you can only spend a single action point per encounter. It is unclear if the abilities that grant an action point for immediate use break the one action point per encounter rule or not.