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Faxes, Modems and Broadband Cable


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#1 OFFLINE   genegold

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Posted 16 August 2008 - 06:52 PM

Will an internal 56k modem work with digital broadband cable (Bresnan)?  My goal is to send faxes occasionally.  The cable installer said a fax machine would work if I use a double phone cord plug-in adapter at the back of the cable co's modem, but I didn't ask about my internal.  The fax machine is not unpacked yet, so I was wondering if the internal modem would work.  Thanks.

#2 OFFLINE   ross549

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Posted 16 August 2008 - 11:26 PM

Assuming the digital telephone modem hooked to the cable line puts out a POTS (Plain Old Telephone System) signal, your modem should work fine as a fax. If not, then you may run into issues.Adam
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#3 OFFLINE   genegold

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Posted 17 August 2008 - 02:46 AM

View Postgenegold, on Aug 16 2008, 04:52 PM, said:

Will an internal 56k modem work with digital broadband cable (Bresnan)?  My goal is to send faxes occasionally.  The cable installer said a fax machine would work if I use a double phone cord plug-in adapter at the back of the cable co's modem, but I didn't ask about my internal.  The fax machine is not unpacked yet, so I was wondering if the internal modem would work.  Thanks.
Quick way to figure out if it does, other than calling customer service?  I've got a phone cord running from computer modem "line" to phone output on back of cable modem, and Motorola's sm56hlpr.exe loading at startup, but XP is saying modem is not functional.  Thanks.

#4 OFFLINE   goretsky

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 02:00 AM

Hello,I am assuming you have purchased VoIP telephone service from your cable Internet provider, is that correct?Have you tried plugging an analog phone in where you plan on installing the fax machine and dialing another number to verify that calls can be made properly from a telephone plugged into the jack?Regards,Aryeh Goretsky
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#5 OFFLINE   Tushman

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 02:36 AM

View Postgenegold, on Aug 16 2008, 05:52 PM, said:

Will an internal 56k modem work with digital broadband cable (Bresnan)?  My goal is to send faxes occasionally.  The cable installer said a fax machine would work if I use a double phone cord plug-in adapter at the back of the cable co's modem, but I didn't ask about my internal.  The fax machine is not unpacked yet, so I was wondering if the internal modem would work.  Thanks.
I'd be very surprised if you did manage to get it to work.  The signal coming out of the DSL modem is digital. I very much doubt you will be able to send faxes from your PC.

#6 OFFLINE   genegold

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 03:03 AM

This is neither VoIP nor DSL, but broadband digital cable (Bresnan Communications, Montana).  Though perhaps the answer is the same as DSL(?).The internal computer modem has two jacks, one "line" and the other "phone."  With Line hooked to Bresnan's modem, hooking an analog phone into the computer modem's phone jack gets a dial tone (my regular analog desk phone is also plugged into the back of Bresnan's modem with a dual connecter).  Just on starting the computer the internal modem alone doesn't seem to be operative.There was a time up to last year when my internal modem did work with, for example, Comcast broadband cable in Minnesota, but I think there's been a change in the signal (all digital?) used by many cable companies (Comcast, Bresnan) that changed things.  Given the widespread availability of broadband digital cable telephony, I was wondering if the old internal modem is a thing of the past or if there's a way to still use them.

#7 OFFLINE   Tushman

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 03:11 AM

View Postgenegold, on Aug 18 2008, 02:03 AM, said:

This is neither VoIP nor DSL, but broadband digital cable (Bresnan Communications, Montana).  Though perhaps the answer is the same as DSL(?).The internal computer modem has two jacks, one "line" and the other "phone."  With Line hooked to Bresnan's modem, hooking an analog phone into the computer modem's phone jack gets a dial tone (my regular analog desk phone is also plugged into the back of Bresnan's modem with a dual connecter).  Just on starting the computer the internal modem alone doesn't seem to be operative.There was a time up to last year when my internal modem did work with, for example, Comcast broadband cable in Minnesota, but I think there's been a change in the signal (all digital?) used by many cable companies (Comcast, Bresnan) that changed things.  Given the widespread availability of broadband digital cable telephony, I was wondering if the old internal modem is a thing of the past or if there's a way to still use them.
I am in no way an expert in this subject matter, but I still don't see how you could possibly get a purely digital network to process a fax signal (analog). According to the front page of the Bresnan Digital website, it states:

Quote

Bresnan high-speed Internet installation utilizes the company's improved fiber and coaxial cable network to offer the fastest, the most reliable Internet access available.
http://www.everythin...resnan/bresnan/Pay particular attention to the words fiber and coaxial.

Edited by Tushman, 18 August 2008 - 03:14 AM.


#8 OFFLINE   ross549

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 08:01 AM

He is getting digital telephone service from his cable provider. That service is provided by a second modem that takes the POTS signal and converts it to a digital signal that can be sent over the cable service's lines. Cox cable offers the same thing, as do most of the cable providers.If the phone hooked to the phone jack works, then the issue will be the modem itself. Adam
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#9 OFFLINE   lewmur

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 11:13 AM

View Postross549, on Aug 18 2008, 09:01 AM, said:

He is getting digital telephone service from his cable provider. That service is provided by a second modem that takes the POTS signal and converts it to a digital signal that can be sent over the cable service's lines. Cox cable offers the same thing, as do most of the cable providers.If the phone hooked to the phone jack works, then the issue will be the modem itself. Adam
I agree with you, Adam.  The problem is with his Internal Modem and not with the Broadband setup.  Like you said, if the telephone gets a dialtone from the phone jack on the Int Mod, then the cables are connected properly and the Int Mod should work.Lew

#10 OFFLINE   Tushman

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 11:46 AM

View Postross549, on Aug 18 2008, 07:01 AM, said:

He is getting digital telephone service from his cable provider. That service is provided by a second modem that takes the POTS signal and converts it to a digital signal that can be sent over the cable service's lines. Cox cable offers the same thing, as do most of the cable providers.If the phone hooked to the phone jack works, then the issue will be the modem itself. Adam
I wasn't aware he was getting digital telephone service from his ISP, not to mention the fact that Genegold stated above it is NOT dsl service he's getting.  I saw the word coaxial on the website and assumed he was getting broadband cable.  Can you really get digital telephone service via coax?By the way, I'd like to know out of curiosity how a regular telephone cord with a RJ11/14 jack would fit into a regular DSL modem with a RJ44 port.

Edited by Tushman, 18 August 2008 - 11:52 AM.


#11 OFFLINE   genegold

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 11:58 AM

In thinking some more about this, the phone I have connected to the Bresnan modem - and yes, this is dedicated digital phone line - has an pulse/tone selector, the latter selection making it compatible with a digital signal.  However, the internal modem, a Motorola SM56, is analog, without a digital processor.  For example, I found this: "The Motorola SM56 is a SoftModem chipset -  lacking a DSP (digital signal processor)... This type of modem is also known as HSP (host signal processor)." - http://www.modemsite.com/56k/sm56.asp.  As for why I can get a dial tone out of the modem's phone jack (with Line connected), I suspect it's like some other electronic devices that are wired to be able to pass a signal between input/output plugs without actually engaging the main circuit electronics. Does that make sense?Although I assume the internal modem's original market was generated by the need for users to dial-up ISPs and send faxes from a computer, I would think that for convenience sake there is still a market for cheap digitally-compatible internal modems.

#12 OFFLINE   lewmur

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 12:20 PM

View Postgenegold, on Aug 18 2008, 12:58 PM, said:

In thinking some more about this, the phone I have connected to the Bresnan modem - and yes, this is dedicated digital phone line - has an pulse/tone selector, the latter selection making it compatible with a digital signal.  However, the internal modem, a Motorola SM56, is analog, without a digital processor.  For example, I found this: "The Motorola SM56 is a SoftModem chipset -  lacking a DSP (digital signal processor)... This type of modem is also known as HSP (host signal processor)." - http://www.modemsite.com/56k/sm56.asp.  As for why I can get a dial tone out of the modem's phone jack (with Line connected), I suspect it's like some other electronic devices that are wired to be able to pass a signal between input/output plugs without actually engaging the main circuit electronics. Does that make sense?Although I assume the internal modem's original market was generated by the need for users to dial-up ISPs and send faxes from a computer, I would think that for convenience sake there is still a market for cheap digitally-compatible internal modems.
If you can plug a standard telephone into the jack where you are plugging in the modem, and make phone calls, then it should work.  If, OTOH, the jack requires a "digital" phone, then it isn't going to work.  IOW, if you can take a $10 phone from Wal-Mart and have it work, which you indicated by saying you "got a dialtone," then the Int Mod should work.  If you have to use a $100 handset provided by your "cable" co., then you are flat out of luck.BTW, the "type" of Int Mod in your computer has nothing to do with it.  What does matter, if you do have a "digital" phone system, is whether or not the "digital handset" provided by the "cable co.," has an "analog" jack on it.  IOW, the "handset" or "phone" provided by the "cable co." in a "digital" phone system, will often have an "analog" jack on it to provide service for things like a computer modem or fax machine.  In that case, the "handset" converts the "analog" signal to "digital" and relays it to the system.

Edited by lewmur, 18 August 2008 - 12:29 PM.


#13 OFFLINE   genegold

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 12:42 PM

View Postlewmur, on Aug 18 2008, 10:20 AM, said:

If you can plug a standard telephone into the jack where you are plugging in the modem, and make phone calls, then it should work.  If, OTOH, the jack requires a "digital" phone, then it isn't going to work.  IOW, if you can take a $10 phone from Wal-Mart and have it work, which you indicated by saying you "got a dialtone," then the Int Mod should work.  If you have to use a $100 handset provided by your "cable" co., then you are flat out of luck.BTW, the "type" of Int Mod in your computer has nothing to do with it.
Ok if that's true, I'd be interested to understand better the purpose of the pulse/touch tone switch on (older) phones.  I thought the two handle signals differently and thus while the phone will work with either, they had different capabilities in interacting with the rest of the phone world.  It's of course possible that my internal modem has gone bad sitting there unused for the past 14 months - or could it be the analog internal modem needs a different signal than Bresnan is providing?  When I moved from St. Paul to Minneapolis last year and they switched me over to a fully digital phone signal, I remember the Comcast installer saying that if I wanted to use the internal modem I'd need another line, but maybe that wasn't correct.  Also, here in Montana, the installer said if I want to plug-in multiple phones around the unit, I'd need to buy a handheld set with a base unit (if that's relevant).

#14 OFFLINE   genegold

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 01:56 PM

Those of you who said it should work are correct, as I've now gotten the modem recognized.  The answer turns out to be (very) embarassingly simple.  I just switched slots the modem was in and, well - when I last closed the case, I was short a screw and skimped on the modem's attachment to the case.  I'm guessing it wasn't grounded.  Sorry for the trouble.  Gene

#15 OFFLINE   lewmur

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 03:50 PM

View Postgenegold, on Aug 18 2008, 01:42 PM, said:

Ok if that's true, I'd be interested to understand better the purpose of the pulse/touch tone switch on (older) phones.  I thought the two handle signals differently and thus while the phone will work with either, they had different capabilities in interacting with the rest of the phone world.  It's of course possible that my internal modem has gone bad sitting there unused for the past 14 months - or could it be the analog internal modem needs a different signal than Bresnan is providing?  When I moved from St. Paul to Minneapolis last year and they switched me over to a fully digital phone signal, I remember the Comcast installer saying that if I wanted to use the internal modem I'd need another line, but maybe that wasn't correct.  Also, here in Montana, the installer said if I want to plug-in multiple phones around the unit, I'd need to buy a handheld set with a base unit (if that's relevant).
Ah, you must be young!!!  Guess you don't remember the old "rotary dial" telephones used before "touch tone" phones were invented.  Believe it or not, there are still some remote areas where the exchange has never been modernized to accept "touch tone" dialing.  To use a modem in those areas you must set them to imitate the "pulse dialing" of the old "rotary" phones.

#16 OFFLINE   genegold

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 04:02 PM

View Postlewmur, on Aug 18 2008, 01:50 PM, said:

Ah, you must be young!!!  Guess you don't remember the old "rotary dial" telephones used before "touch tone" phones were invented.  Believe it or not, there are still some remote areas where the exchange has never been modernized to accept "touch tone" dialing.  To use a modem in those areas you must set them to imitate the "pulse dialing" of the old "rotary" phones.
On the contrary!  Don't know why you would have thought that.  Are there still locales in the U.S. with pulse only?  I haven't seen any reason to use it (except for testing this morning) in what must be approaching 15 years.

#17 OFFLINE   lewmur

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 04:37 PM

View Postgenegold, on Aug 18 2008, 05:02 PM, said:

On the contrary!  Don't know why you would have thought that.  Are there still locales in the U.S. with pulse only?  I haven't seen any reason to use it (except for testing this morning) in what must be approaching 15 years.
Probably very few.  But that doesn't mean the FCC will relax the requirements for compatibility.  And there are phone systems outside of the U.S.  :)

#18 OFFLINE   goretsky

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Posted 19 August 2008 - 12:58 AM

Hello, It is possible to get Voice Over IP (VoIP) service using a cable broadband connection.   VoIP is typically transmitted using standard TCP/IP protocol, which can go over Ethernet, xDSL, Cable, SLIP/PPP and so forth.  The medium is not that important, as long as it is robust enough to stream the audio.  Typically a 64 kilobit per second connnection is required, assuming no compression is used.  In addition to that speed, the connection has to be relatively low in latency, otherwise you might have issues with audio quality.Sending a fax (or using a modem) over a VoIP phone line can be problematic because the signal gets distorted during transmission due to data compression and echo cancellation. This can be resolved if the VoIP line supports the T.38 standard for sending faxes over a network, but VoIP providers typically charge a premium for enabling this as it increases their costs.   What you might want to do is verify fax capability is working for both inbound and outbound transmissions.  That way you will know for certain if there are any issues before you need to use the service for an important document.Regards, Aryeh Goretsky
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#19 OFFLINE   genegold

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Posted 19 August 2008 - 02:44 AM

View Postgoretsky, on Aug 18 2008, 10:58 PM, said:

Hello, It is possible to get Voice Over IP (VoIP) service using a cable broadband connection.   VoIP is typically transmitted using standard TCP/IP protocol, which can go over Ethernet, xDSL, Cable, SLIP/PPP and so forth.  The medium is not that important, as long as it is robust enough to stream the audio.  Typically a 64 kilobit per second connnection is required, assuming no compression is used.  In addition to that speed, the connection has to be relatively low in latency, otherwise you might have issues with audio quality.Sending a fax (or using a modem) over a VoIP phone line can be problematic because the signal gets distorted during transmission due to data compression and echo cancellation. This can be resolved if the VoIP line supports the T.38 standard for sending faxes over a network, but VoIP providers typically charge a premium for enabling this as it increases their costs.   What you might want to do is verify fax capability is working for both inbound and outbound transmissions.  That way you will know for certain if there are any issues before you need to use the service for an important document.
Aryeh, I see you're a moderator.  Perhaps VoIP digital cable is prevelant where you are?  That's not the case in the upper midwest (Comcast) or Rockies (Bresnan), which do not sell VoIP services.  Obviously, one can use their broadband service with a VoIP provider, but I'm not sure where you got the idea that was the case in this thread.

#20 OFFLINE   Tushman

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Posted 20 August 2008 - 01:34 AM

View Postgenegold, on Aug 19 2008, 01:44 AM, said:

Aryeh, I see you're a moderator.  Perhaps VoIP digital cable is prevelant where you are?  That's not the case in the upper midwest (Comcast) or Rockies (Bresnan), which do not sell VoIP services.  Obviously, one can use their broadband service with a VoIP provider, but I'm not sure where you got the idea that was the case in this thread.
I'm still surprised you managed to get a RJ11 jack into a DSL modem.  Apparently some DSL modems do have a phone jack.And BTW, Genegold - I'm befuddled as ever on what you really have over there.  First you stated earlier in the thread it's NOT DSL but then later, you stated it was.  So which is it?  :thumbsup: :wacko: :wacko: :wacko:

Quote

This is neither VoIP nor DSL, but broadband digital cable
I'd like to know for future reference how successful you were in sending/receiving faxes.  Have you sent any test faxes?

Edited by Tushman, 20 August 2008 - 01:36 AM.


#21 OFFLINE   lewmur

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Posted 20 August 2008 - 10:49 AM

View PostTushman, on Aug 20 2008, 02:34 AM, said:

I'm still surprised you managed to get a RJ11 jack into a DSL modem.  Apparently some DSL modems do have a phone jack.And BTW, Genegold - I'm befuddled as ever on what you really have over there.  First you stated earlier in the thread it's NOT DSL but then later, you stated it was.  So which is it?  :wacko: :wacko: :wacko: :wacko:I'd like to know for future reference how successful you were in sending/receiving faxes.  Have you sent any test faxes?
Many "cable" co.s are now offering "phone" services.  While the service is technically "VoIP," to the customer it appears as a plain ole phone connection.  All of the old analog phones in the house will still work and so will a fax machine or computer modem. And if he can get a connection on his Internal Computer modem, he can send an receive faxes.  As it turns out, the poster had a problem with his Int Mod and mistakenly attributed the problem to his new "cable stuff."  With all of the "new stuff" available, is it really any wonder that posters sometimes have difficulty explaining just what "stuff" they have?  That's for us to figure out. :thumbsup:

Edited by lewmur, 20 August 2008 - 11:14 AM.


#22 OFFLINE   genegold

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Posted 20 August 2008 - 11:14 AM

I've always found Scott's forums to be darn weird (sort of like the sponsor :thumbsup:.  Some very helpful advice combined with some contributors who are, shall we say, reading their own thoughts into what's written.  Once I got the internal modem placement issue (probably grounding) settled and the computer to recognize it, I was able to send a fax successfully (I keep fax receive turned off).  The connection is from the cable company's digital box to the Line plug of the modem (in parallel with my deskphone).  I think the Comcast installer in Mpls gave me bad info last year and got me thinking in the wrong direction.  Thanks to those who helped steer me back on course.

Edited by genegold, 20 August 2008 - 12:58 PM.


#23 OFFLINE   Tushman

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Posted 20 August 2008 - 02:25 PM

View Postgenegold, on Aug 20 2008, 10:14 AM, said:

I've always found Scott's forums to be darn weird (sort of like the sponsor :wacko:.  Some very helpful advice combined with some contributors who are, shall we say, reading their own thoughts into what's written.
Sort of hard to "read into" what's written when the original poster himself is confused and makes a statement saying

Quote

This is neither VoIP nor DSL, but broadband digital cable
and then later realizes himself that it is indeed DSL service he's getting.  :thumbsup: The only assumption I made in the beginning was that you weren't using DSL, but I suppose that was a figment of my imagination when you said it's not DSL service per your quote above.

#24 OFFLINE   genegold

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Posted 20 August 2008 - 03:50 PM

View PostTushman, on Aug 20 2008, 12:25 PM, said:

Sort of hard to "read into" what's written when the original poster himself is confused and makes a statement sayingand then later realizes himself that it is indeed DSL service he's getting.  :thumbsup: The only assumption I made in the beginning was that you weren't using DSL, but I suppose that was a figment of my imagination when you said it's not DSL service per your quote above.
My gosh, I stated plainly that I have "broadband digital cable" and named my current and previous providers, in case anyone wished to do a quick check before answering.  When mentioned, I also stated plainly that I do not have DSL or VoIP.  I'm not sure how I could have put it more clearly than that.  This leads me to wonder if providers' recent marketing propaganda hasn't created some confusion about the internet connection terminology we use in these discussions.  I believe that that the term "broadband cable" was used early on by direct cable providers exclusively (e.g., Time-Warner?, Comcast, AT&T), while DSL providers said they provided, well, DSL, and VoIP providers provided what they called VoIP.  Then dial-up ISPs started monkeying with their software a little and offering the new version as an upgrade to "lightening fast high speed internet."  Then DSL providers like Qwest realized they too could generate business by confusing everyone, i.e., selling DSL as "high speed internet" and "broadband."  Then VoIP providers started talking about "cable VoIP," which if I'm not mistaken is simply another name for the same third party hookup to an existing cable connection they always provided.  Now, fiber optic is getting into it too, which in my opinion is a mistake, because "fiber optic" is such a superior service that they would do well to stick with their own label for marketing purposes.  In any event, if you look at the various company sites now, it's getting harder and harder to tell which technology(s) they actually provide.  For example, take a look at Qwest's site (http://www.qwest.com/) and see if you can figure out what technology their primary type of internet service uses.

#25 OFFLINE   Tushman

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 01:15 AM

LOL... well you certainly have clarified that right up for us! LOL.It's always amusing to see people who don't know what or how to phrase their question  later correct themselves when they've realized their phrasing was entirely off.  Listen Genegold, I'm glad you got your 'faxing' problem figured out. I truly am. But when you start throwing out statements in a accusatory manner saying so & so were "reading into the question", I have some objections to that partly because you didn't have the decency to address it to my face but rather in a snide way stating certain people are here to help and but certain people are just here to "read into" things.Well let me 'read ' a couple of things for you buddy.  First, when people say "broadband digital cable", for home settings that usually involves DSL or coax cable service.  And here you are from the get go telling us that it's not DSL service.  Were these words just a figment of my imagination?Genegold:

Quote

This is neither VoIP nor DSL, but broadband digital cable
.It's clear to me you don't understand what the term means - otherwise you would have said from the very beginning "I have DSL".  Your continual flip-flopping throughout the thread was what was adding to the confusion.  If you truly have DSL - why didn't you just say so from the beginning?  Again, sounds like to me you were just confused.  No harm no foul.  But atleast have the maturity to face up to it and say, oops, I made a mistake.  But instead it's deny deny deny - I was clear all along.  LOL...  maybe a certain someone in the White House would like to have you in his administration.

Edited by Tushman, 21 August 2008 - 01:49 AM.





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