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November 30, 2001

Five cases of plagiarism involving

Five cases of plagiarism involving George Harrison (but not all of them his fault).

originally posted by xowie

I don't think these

I don't think these people got the message that the War on "Terrorism" is about "saving lives." How dare these naive pacifists stand up and challenge the war? Family members of the victims? Are they ungrateful or what? I did a lexis-nexis search on this and found a grand total of one story on this and it was in the Washington Times of all places.

But here's what that charmer Ari Fleischer had to say about them:


Q: Ari, two questions. A group of family members of victims of September 11th are marching this week from the Pentagon to New York to protest the war. They were here on Monday in front of the White House. One of them is Amber Amundson, who is the 28-year-old widow of Craig Amundson, who died at the Pentagon. She wrote a letter to the president in which she said, "When we buried my husband, an American flag was laid over his casket. My children believe the American flag represents their dad. Please let that representation be one of love, peace and forgiveness. I am begging you, for the sake of humanity and my children, to stop killing. Please find a non-violent way to bring justice to this world." Now, they want to meet with the president. Is the president willing to meet with them?

MR. FLEISCHER: Russ, you asked me a similar question about a month ago about this same family. If there is any meeting, I will, of course, keep you posted about any meetings that the president has. But the president -- and I think most Americans understand that the purpose of this campaign is to save lives, not to take lives. And that's why the president is so determined to defend our country. He also is very respectful of the message that he has received from these families. He understands their thoughts, and they're heartfelt. He understands them, he respects them. He differs. He believes that this mission is saving lives.


originally posted by zagg

The great trouble with the

The great trouble with the Negro in the South is that all presumptions are against him. A white man has but to blacken his face and commit a crime to have some Negro lynched in his stead.
An abandoned woman has only to start a cry, true or false, that she has been insulted by a black man, to have him arrested and summarily murdered by the mob.
Words courtesy Frederick Douglass, images courtesy white racism.

Great song.

Great song.

originally posted by xowie

Happy Birthday, Shirley Chisholm.

Happy Birthday, Shirley Chisholm.

Bonghit sanctuary.

Bonghit sanctuary.

originally posted by xowie

The fall of Enron. There

The fall of Enron. There is an article in the print version of today's Guardian by Arundhati Roy on Enron's activities in India but it doesn't seem to be online. Ah well. Omid Djalili, a great stand-up comic, gets another acting part.

November 29, 2001

Play supershagland, or maybe don't,

Play supershagland, or maybe don't, go out and shag for real instead?!

CounterPunch: We Are the War

CounterPunch: We Are the War Criminals Now by Robt. Fisk, and Suffer Palestine's Children by Sunil K. Sharma.

originally posted by xowie

Industry 2, Free Speech 0.

Industry 2, Free Speech 0.

originally posted by xowie

NYT: The Old Rock Reborn

NYT: The Old Rock Reborn as New. A primer to the rock-n-roll revival with mentions of the usual suspects, incl. the White Stripes and the Strokes.

Over all, more than 1,200

Over all, more than 1,200 people have been detained as part of the sweeping investigation, including men traveling the country with large amounts of cash and box cutters, and those who sought information on crop-dusters and flying lessons on large jets. But a senior law enforcement official said for the first time last week that just 10 to 15 of the detainees are suspected as Al Qaeda sympathizers, and that the government has yet to find evidence indicating that any of them had knowledge of the Sept. 11 attacks or acted as accomplices.
How do you spell internment? (How quickly one forgets.)

originally posted by xowie

Sadiq Khan, a London-based human

Sadiq Khan, a London-based human rights lawyer, said there appeared to have been a breach of the Geneva convention, which says prisoners "must at all times be humanely treated". Mr Khan said: "There is no doubt that the prisoners' human rights were violated."
He added that international law, which says that any military response should be proportionate, may also have been broken. "There should be an urgent inquiry as to whether the International Criminal Court should be set up to assess whether war crimes have been committed.
"If this is a war, and the US says it is, then rules of engagement should apply. It does not sound like the [US bombing] was a proportionate response. Many of the Taliban were tied up."
Britain and the US face increasing pressure (from, amongst others, Amnesty) to account for bombing prisoners of war held at Mazar-i-Sharif. As far as I'm aware, attacking PoWs contravenes the Geneva Convention and is usually classified as a war crime.

November 28, 2001

The city attorney stands

The city attorney stands by his opinion that some of the questions violate Oregon state law," Portland Police Chief Mark Kroeker said Tuesday evening after conferring with the mayor and city attorney. "We're not doing this to make a point. We're doing it to follow the law. I have an attorney, and it's the city attorney.
The Portland Police continue to struggle with Ashcroft and the US government. (full coverage also available)

It has come to be

It has come to be assumed in much of the Muslim world that to be a proponent of women's rights is to be pro-Western. This enmeshing of gender and geopolitics has robbed Muslim women of their ability to develop a discourse on their rights independent of a cultural debate between the Western and Muslim worlds.
Muslim Women as Symbols — and Pawns (nytimes.com) via Follow Me Here.

Putin (black belt in judo,

Putin (black belt in judo, woo-hoo) is benefitting most from the current war on Afghanistan. Longer-term forecast for global energy map (again, Putin wins). Go, Vlad!

November 27, 2001

I've said this before, but

I've said this before, but it deserves repeating now that some new people are checking in here: the list of literary links to your right on this page is seriously anemic -- there must be some more good stuff to add on, and I'm tired of a list of authors that should more rightly be called "My Favorite Authors." We'll gladly tack on any good links. Just e-mail us or [comment] here and we'll get on top of it. Thanks.

The God of Small Things

The God of Small Things Study Guide

I read Girl with a

I read Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier (local girl makes good, studies at Oberlin, moves to London) last night in one sitting.

I was disappointed. The prose wasn't stunning. It was nice to think about the subjects of Vermeer's paintings as he might have known them, but the story didn't require much thought at all. The main character was too perfect and self-righteous, which is my chief complaint about another bestselling character - Dr. Kay Scarpetta of Patricia Cornwell's creation.

Perfect for a long plane trip, I thought, which must be why it's a best seller. A good lesson in not judging a book by its cover - I expected too much because of the pretty picture on the front.

originally posted by Greer

Right-wing loon admits sending anthrax

Right-wing loon admits sending anthrax threats to abortion clinics and Planned Parenthood offices around the States.

November 26, 2001

Baptists urged to pray for

Baptists urged to pray for Muslim conversions during Ramadan.

"It's a free country," said Ibrahim Hooper, communications director of the Council on Islamic-American Relations. "If he wants to have Christians fast and pray, we're hardly in a position to tell people not to."

originally posted by xowie

An Alternate Reality (nytimes.com)Most political

An Alternate Reality (nytimes.com)

Most political reporting about the stimulus debate describes it as a conflict of ideologies. But ideology has nothing to do with it. No economic doctrine I'm aware of, right or left, says that an $800 million lump-sum transfer to General Motors will lead to more investment when the company is already sitting on $8 billion in cash.

Okay, so let's have that

Okay, so let's have that national ID card. Or, better, a national ID tattoo. Or, better yet, how about an identifying microchip embedded into every American's ear? I'm sure Oracle's Larry Ellison could devise a tiny chip for that purpose, one that could easily be read by an electronic scanner.
Harley Sorensen, Lend me your ears.

originally posted by xowie

Eliminate terrorism? All you need

Eliminate terrorism? All you need is love.

originally posted by xowie

Naughty children to be registered

Naughty children to be registered as potential criminals (news.telegraph.co.uk) - "[UK] police are to set up a secret database of children as young as three who they fear might grow up to become criminals."

Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni writes about

Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni writes about the loss of the literary hero in Sunday's Washington Post Book World. She gave me a thing or two to think about as I attempt to plow through my novel, which I haven't given up on yet, even with a mere 10,761 words and only five days to go.

I received a gift certificate

I received a gift certificate to a mega- super conglomerate type book store for my birthday (not to sound ungrateful,) and I was wondering if anyone had any title suggestions. Usually I just go by what grabs me, judging all the books by their covers, but I've had such bad luck choosing new music recently I don't trust myself anymore. Any thoughts?

I'm down to read The God of Small Things. I started reading it a couple of years ago but just couldn't get into it. This time I'm really enjoying it so far. Her style is very familiar to me.

I'd heard that such things

I'd heard that such things went on in suburbia, but I didn't believe it. Sounds very cool as long as you can hook up with others with similar views and parenting styles. Nice to include some tips on how to start your own baby-sitting co-op. There was a great article in Mothering magazine last year about creating community through sharing in child care. I also need to stop saying I will and really get in touch with this group.

Along with Bill Maher's career

Along with Bill Maher's career and Susan Sontag's credibility, we must now add Hollywood's flatulent self-importance.
Hm. I think I liked it better when the entertainment industry counted for something.

originally posted by judlew

Remember the little rush of

Remember the little rush of pleasure the first time your brain was forced to question itself by the tessellations, optical deceptions and serene beauty of M.C. Escher? Relive that sense of wonder with a few of his artistic heirs: Kelly Houle and István Orosz specialize in "catoptric anamorphosis" (the art of distorting an image such that you need a mirror to correct it). Their visions include the unexpected, poetic, and flat-out impossible.
to Art by cricket
Originally seen on memepool and used without permission. That's probably rude.

Should I set up a

Should I set up a randomWalks mailing list?

Let our position be absolutely

Let our position be absolutely clear: An attempt by any outside force to gain control of the Persian Gulf region will be regarded as an assault on the vital interests of the United States of America, and such an assault will be repelled by any means necessary, including military force.
Carter's 1980 State of the Union Address.

The Secret Service in Durham,

The Secret Service in Durham, NC are investigating a poster (critical of Bush's Texas executions) on a teenager's wall, according to the Independent Weekly.

November 25, 2001

They Rule rules.

They Rule rules.

originally posted by judlew

Wild WP joint on Freemasonry.

Wild WP joint on Freemasonry.

originally posted by xowie

At her best, which was

At her best, which was often, Kael was so brilliantly persuasive on her own terms that she could seem right — right for Pauline Kael — even when wrong by your own standards or, indeed, nearly everyone else's.
Remembering Pauline Kael.

originally posted by xowie

Father Mychal Judge, The Firemen's

Father Mychal Judge, The Firemen's Friar.

originally posted by xowie

November 24, 2001

Stamp Backlash Worries Muslims (washingtonpost.com)

Stamp Backlash Worries Muslims (washingtonpost.com) - Xenophobic philatelists eschew the recently introduced Eid Mubarak postal stamp.

November 22, 2001

Playing With Fire, for PesosExcept

Playing With Fire, for Pesos

Except for the diesel fuel that drips down his chin, the jug of fuel he totes around and the wand of fire he brandishes, Sanchez acts much of the day like a friendly traffic officer, waving pedestrians across his corner of Insurgentes Avenue and Thomas Edison.

Although a few passersby hesitate before stepping into the crosswalk where Sanchez is preparing his act, most walk right by without a second glance. He's far from the only fire-eater in town.



Thinking Globally, Selling Locally
sprawling over four acres north of Cincinnati, Jungle Jim's is the endpoint of a global network of farmers, suppliers, producers and distributors. Each day, the gates of its loading docks roll open to take in a universe far beyond La Choy and Old El Paso -- 110,000 products, fresh and canned, boxed and frozen, shipped in from all over.



Pentagonese for Besieged Parents
"What are we having for dinner?"



"I don't have anything for you on that at this point in time."


"Well, didn't you go to the store?"


"I'm not going to discuss tactics, techniques or procedures."


"Well, did you, like, go to the store or not?"


"We have achieved our objectives."


"Did you get the frozen pizza?"


"I'm not going to tell you what those objectives are."

Also in today's Post:

Ex-Journalist on Death Row Denied Appeal - "Common Pleas Judge Pamela Dembe said she does not have jurisdiction over Abu-Jamal's petition, scuttling his hopes for another round of state court appeals.
... Still pending is his federal appeal in the slaying of Officer Daniel Faulkner, 25, who was killed after he pulled over Abu-Jamal's brother in a traffic stop."
Discourse Does Not Match Falling Sept. 11 Death Toll - "The discrepancy reflects both the resilience of statistics and a curious psychological irony: Although people are glad that there were fewer victims, powerful political, social and emotional forces conspire to make reducing the number of casualties difficult."
Complementary Celebrations - "It may be Thanksgiving, but for Muslims in Gaithersburg and around the world, it is also the seventh day of the rigorous observance of the holy month of Ramadan."
The I Do's and Dont's of Intercultural Marriage

From the we're all one

From the we're all one little planet dept.:

Despite Monteverde's tens of thousands of protected acres, scientists say this tropical luxuriance, beloved by biologists and eco-tourists alike, may be at risk: the clouds that bathe the mountains seem to be disappearing.


Save the cloud forest.

originally posted by judlew

Of the many who






Of the many who auditioned for Max's role, some actors spontaneously showed up in preppy-looking blazers. But Shwartzman earned the part by, among other things, being the only one who made a fake Rushmore patch.

It would be a great day to watch the greatest movie ever.


The case against the Afghan

The case against the Afghan war was never that the Taliban would turn out to be a latterday Vietcong - critics predicted they would be defeated - but primarily that it would lead to large-scale civilian casualties, fail to stamp out anti-western terrorism, create a political backlash throughout the Muslim world and actually increase the likelihood of further attacks. In the absence of any serious effort to address the grievances underlying anti-US hatred, that argument has been strengthened. It was clear long ago, certainly since the demise of the Soviet Union, that no state could defeat the US in a conventional military confrontation and that only the war of the flea - guerrilla warfare or terrorism - could be effective. The Afghan debacle has hammered that lesson home.
Seamus Milne on the hollow victory.

November 21, 2001

When Laura Bush delivers her

When Laura Bush delivers her terse radio address on Saturday, November 17, she says nothing of deposed kings or the place of women among Afghanistan’s new government. She does not mention the resolution submitted to Congress by New York Democrat Louise Slaughter and Florida Republican Ileana Ros-Lehtinen urging that women be leaders in any new government. She does not mention RAWA, and she does not promise the women of Afghanistan that the Northern Alliance will not be permitted to oppress them. She speaks as though women’s liberation is a fait accompli.
Out of the frying pan by Judith Lewis.

originally posted by xowie

America's hyperreal war on terrorism

America's hyperreal war on terrorism by Anis Shivani

The best way to understand "America's new war" is as a convenient legitimizing rubric to extend American economic and military power abroad, and to complete the repressive domestic agenda already set in motion during the post-cold war years in the guise of the "war on drugs."


In both instances, corporate globalization's increasingly intolerant attitude toward dissent of any kind is implicated. This is not so much a war against "terrorism," but a pre-emptive strike against domestic and international opposition to the hegemony of transnational capital in the early years of the twenty-first century. (...)


This is the postmodern form of repression, where terror-originating from the state is completely unlocalized, and it penetrates to the very core of the potential dissenter's heart and mind, and allows no possible refuge from the panoptical sights of the police state. (...)


In effect, the anti-terrorism legislation of 2001 is analogous to Hitler's 1933 Enabling Act, converting the hithertofore soft American totalitarian state into a hard one, making explicit by writ of law what was already occurring in terms of supression of free speech, dissent against the corporate global order, and massive inequalities in access to power and justice.
The usurpation of the voters' will in the 2000 election was a test-run: since this judicial coup engendered no noticeable dissent among the intelligentsia, press, and common people, the stage was set for an all-out assault on the remaining liberties of the people. (...)


Racial profiling of Arab and Muslim Americans has been endorsed by even liberal Senators. Anti-globalization activists wonder if their shop has been closed for good.
The distinctive element of this wave of repression is that it is accompanied by soft talk. The president and his surrogates will continue to make the correct multicultural noises about acceptance of difference, even advocacy of a Palestinian state should that be necessary to buy the short-term allegiance of recalcitrant Muslim states, but the words will be as hollow as the administration's "compassionate conservative" ideology. As more than $2 trillion was handed out to the richest Americans in a "tax cut" designed to starve the federal government of resources for public spending, the compassionate part of this policy relied on the armies of compassion to rally ordinary people to public service and on so-called faith-based initiatives to handle the welfare discards. (...)

The war on terrorism signifies not a return to multilateralism, as some have suggested, but an escalation of the unilateralist position already taken by conservatives during the first eight months of this administration. "You're either with us or against us." Is that multilateralism? The US is only seeking a thin cover for its avowed military and economic goals (including assertion of hegemony in the key, oil-rich Central Asian region), but it is not multilateralism by any means.

Unless I am vetoed in

Unless I am vetoed in the next 24 hours, our next book will be Arundhati Roy's The God of Small Things.

We have yet, as Harry

We have yet, as Harry Potter fans, to weigh in on our favorite book turned movie - what did everyone think? (I loved it!)

Cannabis Could Cure in

Cannabis Could Cure in the Wall Street Journal:

I used to oppose any moves to decriminalize its recreational use (due to my own reservations against any kind of drug abuse). But my review of the literature and extensive clinical experience as an inner-city consultant psychiatrist has changed my views. My reasoning is based first on the theoretical grounds that the toxicity of the drug itself is probably smaller than that of aspirin, in terms of lethal dose or therapeutic ratio. Second, it is based on the lack of proven addiction potential of cannabis or ability, unlike alcohol, to engender dangerous criminal behavior.


Here, here, Dr. Tannock.

originally posted by judlew

[Acting Portland Police Chief

[Acting Portland Police Chief Andrew] Kirkland, who is black, said profiling is an issue that hits home for him, but that's not why the Justice Department's request was rejected.

"I am sympathetic to that issue from a perspective of growing up African American. That doesn't factor into any decision to do this or not. We made that decision regarding racial profiling long before September 11. That decision was made for us when the Legislature wrote the law."

A little sanity from the Portland, Oregon police department, which is refusing to cooperate(cnn, ol) with the Justice Department's request to call in 5,000 "Arab and Middle Eastern" men for questioning.

P.S. That pizza IS really good.

Democracy, anarchy, oligarchy ... Santarchy??!

Democracy, anarchy, oligarchy ... Santarchy??!

November 20, 2001

the washington post breaks

the washington post breaks down his power grab.

originally posted by elihu

Please, explain this collection of

Please, explain this collection of movies.

The recount report from the

The recount report from the national media consortium, using data painstakingly gathered by the National Opinion Research Center (NORC), at a cost of almost a million dollars, was finally released. The data provide strong support for reform, as the data demonstrate (among many other things) that:

  • our current voting system has class, racial, and disability biases;
  • punch card balloting must be eliminated;
  • ’second-chance’ technology, which cuts down on overvotes, needs to be available at the precinct level, everywhere;
  • provisional voting should be a universal right;
  • ballot design should be taken out of the hands of local officials, who may be partisan, incompetent, or just bad designers;
  • hand recounts are justified, to ascertain the will of the people;
  • voting rights should be restored to felons who have served their time;
  • poll workers need (and deserve!) more training; and
  • voter education should be a serious and well-funded public obligation.
Steve Cobble, Are We Really Going to Abandon Election Reform?

originally posted by xowie

The real point, however, is

The real point, however, is that we cannot adopt someone's army as our own and then deny responsibility for its behaviour. We didn't allow the Germans to do that after the Second World War. And when our Northern Alliance boys go on a killing spree, we have to take responsibility for the bloodshed that results.
Robert Fisk: if the side of 'good' happens to coincide with the side of murderers, what does that make us?

CNN.com - Afghans tired of

CNN.com - Afghans tired of war, poll finds - June 16, 2001

Tired of war? Imagine! Way back then.

originally posted by judlew

November 19, 2001

Thanks to evil-doers, Eleanor Smeal

originally posted by xowie

Father Pat (who he, I

Father Pat (who he, I wonder?) supplies a very good comprehensive list of books on the Balkans c/o Salon. Ugresic, Hemon and Mehmedinovic are especially good. Milorad Pavic, however, sucks donkey cock in hell. His works are terrible, racist and pretentious crap.

Writers such as Tom Clancy,

Writers such as Tom Clancy, Ken Follett, Mary Higgins Clark, Stephen Coonts, Robin Cook, Faye Kellerman, V.C. Andrews, Jonathan Kellerman, Dean Koontz and Dale Brown are remarkable for a rhythmless beat, and a straightforward approach to writing that ranks zippy, superinventive plot first, stating the obvious second, concrete details third, and language, artistry, character development and the exploration of universal truths somewhere near the bottom of the list.

Coming to terms with No-Style writing, in the Washington Post.

As a Strunk and White devotee, I gotta defend the dynamic duo against Weeks' notion that their little book somehow is responsible for No-Stylists (which, admittedly, I've hardly read). Even writers with ornate styles are, I think, adhering to the rules of concise writing. Concision is justified by the effect, not the mere existence or non-existence, of the words. As long as each word has punch, a writer is excercising concision, even if that writer is a Proust or a Joyce or a Faulkner rather than a Hemingway or a Carver. No-Stylists, as the excerpts in this article indicate, could stand to borrow more from Strunk and White, not less, because they use such flat and imprecise language to move their plots ahead. OK, I got that off my chest...

November 18, 2001

who ya gonna call? (for

who ya gonna call? (for lack of coherent analysis-itis, i often spell relief f-r-e-e-z-e-r-b-o-x):

So the terrorist training camp known as School of the Americas continues to operate Stateside, but has changed its name to The Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation to fool those pesky protestors and retain US public funding. Why stop indoctrinating terrorism when you can just rebrand? In spite of its lofty name, the International Coalition Against Terror is mainly composed of the countries manufacturing and stockpiling most of the world's weapons of mass destruction.
-- Heather Wokusch on Bystander Apathy...

originally posted by elihu

Back in 1992, during the

Back in 1992, during the massive demos in response to the LA cop acquittals, I was nursing gulf war demo wounds and yelling in the street with my pals. My mom was caught in a downtown SF traffic snarl, her volvo wagon surrounded and the streets swarming with legions of TAC Squad riot cops. A steadily recovering republican, bless her heart, she saw the lock-step marching and yelling cops cordoning off whole city blocks, and the draconian measures applied to activists, and said to my sister, "You know, Eli's right! We are living in a police state!" If only we'd known, then, mom, that we'd soon be looking at the likely end of Posse Comitatus. Ug.

originally posted by elihu

The trouble with Harry.

The trouble with Harry.

originally posted by xowie

Epic Macy Gray interview.

Epic Macy Gray interview.

originally posted by xowie

November 17, 2001

originally posted by xowie

originally posted by xowie

Handy checklist to see whether

Handy checklist to see whether you are watching a war on the telly or not.

From Wired, a tale of

From Wired, a tale of nine bare-breasted women who halted logging work near California's contested Headwaters Forest for about two hours last week. In Austria they don't give a shit about trees, and have tits against racism instead.

Leonid viewing info From the

Leonid viewing info


From the AP:


Astronomers expect this year's Leonid meteor shower to peak during a half-hour period around 5 a.m. EST on Sunday, when as many as 70 meteors a minute could streak across the sky. If the weather is clear, the shower should be visible from all North American locations.

To best view the shower, head to a dark location far from city lights. The meteors should be visible across the sky, appearing to radiate from the east, in the direction of the constellation Leo that gives the shower its name.

Only a lawn chair, warm clothes and the naked eye are required. Binoculars or telescopes are not necessary.

Many astronomy clubs and observatories plan to hold meteor shower-gazing parties.

Earthgrazers and Fireballs: The Strange Side of the Leonid Meteor Shower


the most famous portrayal of the Leonid meteor shower of 1833
The most famous depiction of the 1833 leonids was actually produced in 1889 for Bible Readings for the Home Circle.
Leonids 1833: The Night of Raining Fire


Leonids: King of the Meteor Showers
During the three hours of its continuance, the day of judgment was believed to be only waiting for sunrise, and, long after the shower had ceased, the morbid and superstitious still were impressed with the idea that the final day was at least only a week ahead. Impromptu meetings for prayer were held in many places, and many other scenes of religious devotion, or terror, or abandonment of worldly affairs, transpired, under the influence of fear occasioned by so sudden and awful a display.

daypop: leonids


Space.com special report: 2001 Leonid Meteor Showers incl.:

How to Photograph Shooting Stars

Earth Orbiting Satellites Brace for Meteor Shower


I still don't know exactly what I'm going to do to see these -- I'm way too close to DC here to be able to easily find a dark sky. Google just turned up this map of DC-area light pollution from 1995 which should get me started. Aha! The Nothern Virginia Astronomy Club has info on 5 preferred dark-sky sites in the region. Now to convince my wife to drag our baby boy out at 4am, crossing our freezing fingers that the show is on...


Meteor Shower to Be No Mere Sprinkle (washingtonpost.com)
Over the centuries, the Leonids have been unpredictable. Even though the Earth passes through the comet's orbit every year, the intensity of the shower depends on the density of the dust stream at that point.

Decades can pass and the Leonids can be anemic, scientists say. Some years, though, most recently in 1966, the shower can be extraordinary, Chester said. Tomorrow's should be, too.

"This is the best shot you're going to have," he said. "If you don't do it now, you're never going to get the opportunity in your lifetime again."

Will you be watching?

November 16, 2001

It isn't enough for your

It isn't enough for your heart to break, because everybody's heart is broken now.
Allen Ginsberg in The Sun's collection of literary quotes for September 11.

Also:
None Jailed Appear Linked to Attacks (latimes.com)
The First 10 Amendments to the Constitution as Ratified by the States (Slightly Modifiedby Attorney General John Ashcroft in the War against terrorism)
Thanks to Phil Agre and the RRE News.

Interesting article on Muslim support

Interesting article on Muslim support for NATO intervention in Kosovo. The author argues that the sight of American pilots protecting Muslims, and bombing the Serbian Christian soldiers who menaced them, shattered prevalent stereotypes of the 'Great Satan'. This article was written two years ago.

Judith's hotlist for the week.

Judith's hotlist for the week.

originally posted by xowie

‘Your job is to say,

‘Your job is to say, ‘Fuck you, God! Fuck you! Fuck you! Fuck you!’ Because nobody else is going to say it. Our politicians aren’t going to say it. Nobody but the writer is going to say it. There’s time in history when it’s time to praise God, but now is not the time. Now is the time for us to say, ‘Fuck you! I don’t care who your daddy was. Fuck you!’ And get back to our job of writing.’
Ken Kesey’s advice to writers by Paul Krassner.

originally posted by xowie

Critical Resistance recently announced a

Critical Resistance recently announced a major victory in the lawsuit against the California Department of Corrections. The little (endangered) critter that helped out, the Tipton Kangaroo Rat is an amazing creature - like how they don't drink but convert the dry seeds they eat into water.

originally posted by elihu

November 15, 2001

Miss Clinton, a postgraduate student

Miss Clinton, a postgraduate student in international relations at University College, Oxford, her father’s alma mater, has confessed that she is feeling isolated and threatened by the mood she has detected at the university. She found it difficult encountering ‘anti-American feeling’ from peace demonstrators.

Chelsea joins the hecklers at rally.

originally posted by zagg

White House Push on Security

White House Push on Security Steps Bypasses Congress

NYT

originally posted by tragicM

It says here they are

It says here they are going to bury me in private. Babbs says there's been thousands of e-mails and he wants me to thank you all for writing. Meanwhile, I've still lots of forms to fill out and they're looking for a bigger halo but durned if I'm going to play that harp. I'm holding out for the thunder machine. See you around. — Kesey
Kesey obits: nytimes.com (memorial), washingtonpost.com, sfgate.com, latimes.com, registerguard.com (Eugene, OR), npr.org.

The 'Biggest Liar in the

The 'Biggest Liar in the World' contest is taking place today, apparently. Take the Grauniad's lie test.

I’m feeling an incredible affinity

I’m feeling an incredible affinity for this job lately -- three day work week, ambling around the city, looking at people in shop windows, dogs, trees, going into everyone’s apartments and seeing how they live, handling thick piles of cash, feeling like a general bad ass.
Jody spent last summer delivering pot to customers in uptown Manhattan. Read her story and then check out the rest of this great Marketplace series on the underground economy.

Maybe the pro-war lobby will

Maybe the pro-war lobby will organise a victory parade with the Northern Alliance riding through shopping centres in an open-top bus. They'd certainly be in the market for a magazine along the lines of the ones for teenage girls, full of pictures of boy bands and soap stars. Except it would be called "Top Tajikis", with interviews with "all your favourite Alliance commanders": "I'm a Sagittarian, my favourite colour is green and my favourite method of exacting vengeance is castration."
As the Afghan barber said to his customer, 'fleeing anywhere nice this year, sir?' Mark Steel in the Independent.

November 14, 2001

The kids over at MetaFilter

The kids over at MetaFilter are agitating to start a book club. I'll be surprised if it happens on mefi proper, as that doesn't seem to be the way creator Matt Haughey wants to go with mefi, but I'll be equally surprised if it doesn't happen somewhere. Mefi has already spun off several projects and communities, and I think there are many more waiting to be born.

If you're coming from MetaFilter, welcome and make yourself at home. If you want to join in the discussion just email us.

Niem has constructed an ACME

Niem has constructed an ACME Novelty Toy Gallery, assembling the intricate paper designs included in Chris Ware's ACME books and taking copious loving pictures. This is wonderful.

If you have read the

If you have read the following already, I apologise. If not, discover Oolong for yourself:

"I want to reassure everyone out there about the nature of my site. This is a site to demonstrate the natural days of Oolong and me. Period. To my surprise, I realize that this site has been spread around some American chat forums and/or passed around as office humor. I am really surprised at the number of visitors that come to my site, but I hope no one misunderstands the nature of my site. Some visitors have written me e-mails, accusing me of being cruel to my rabbit and that I am abusing my pet. This was never my intention when I included numerous links to photographs, showing Oolong's unique ability to hold objects on his head. This is not a site to mock rabbits, or demonstrate animal abuse. I'm sure you understand it if you see
whole my site. Oolong is so calm and patient -- he never gets angry when I take pictures of him. When I put various objects on his head, he stays still for a minute. This is just a result of an intimate relationship between me and Oolong. The main theme of my site is not to show these 'headperformance' links, and it's not my hope to propagandize nothing but the strangeness of his headperformance over the world."

I'm going to buy some

I'm going to buy some TextAd impressions at MetaFilter, and I need help coming up with a short (50 characters or less) description of randomWalks. Any ideas?

Nor did wild rumors of

Nor did wild rumors of all sorts fail to exaggerate, and still the more horrify the true histories of these deadly encounters. For not only do fabulous rumors naturally grow out of the very body of all surprising terrible events, - as the smitten tree gives birth to its fungi; but, in maritime life, far more than in that of terra firma, wild rumors abound, wherever there is any adequate reality for them to cling to. And as the sea surpasses the land in this matter, so the whale fishery surpasses every other sort of maritime life, in the wonderfulness and fearfulness of the rumors which sometimes circulate there. For not only are whalemen as a body unexempt from that ignorance and superstitiousness hereditary to all sailors; but of all sailors, they are by all odds the most directly brought into contact with whatever is appallingly astonishing in the sea; face to face they not only eye its greatest marvels, but, hand to jaw, give battle to them. Alone, in such remotest waters, that though you sailed a thousand miles, and passed a thousand shores, you would not come to any chiselled hearthstone, or aught hospitable beneath that part of the sun; in such latitudes and longitudes, pursuing too such a calling as he does, the whaleman is wrapped by influences all tending to make his fancy pregnant with many a mighty birth.

No wonder, then, that ever gathering volume from the mere transit over the widest watery spaces, the outblown rumors of the White Whale did in the end incorporate with themselves all manner of morbid hints, and half-formed foetal suggestions of supernatural agencies, which eventually invested Moby Dick with new terrors unborrowed from anything that visibly appears. So that in many cases such a panic did he finally strike, that few who by those rumors, at least, had heard of the White Whale, few of those hunters were willing to encounter the perils of his jaw.


Happy birthday, Moby-Dick, published 150 years ago today. "I have written a wicked book, and feel spotless as the lamb," Melville wrote to his friend Nathaniel Hawthorne in the month of its debut.

Nor did wild rumors of

Nor did wild rumors of all sorts fail to exaggerate, and still the more horrify the true histories of these deadly encounters. For not only do fabulous rumors naturally grow out of the very body of all surprising terrible events, - as the smitten tree gives birth to its fungi; but, in maritime life, far more than in that of terra firma, wild rumors abound, wherever there is any adequate reality for them to cling to. And as the sea surpasses the land in this matter, so the whale fishery surpasses every other sort of maritime life, in the wonderfulness and fearfulness of the rumors which sometimes circulate there. For not only are whalemen as a body unexempt from that ignorance and superstitiousness hereditary to all sailors; but of all sailors, they are by all odds the most directly brought into contact with whatever is appallingly astonishing in the sea; face to face they not only eye its greatest marvels, but, hand to jaw, give battle to them. Alone, in such remotest waters, that though you sailed a thousand miles, and passed a thousand shores, you would not come to any chiselled hearthstone, or aught hospitable beneath that part of the sun; in such latitudes and longitudes, pursuing too such a calling as he does, the whaleman is wrapped by influences all tending to make his fancy pregnant with many a mighty birth.

No wonder, then, that ever gathering volume from the mere transit over the widest watery spaces, the outblown rumors of the White Whale did in the end incorporate with themselves all manner of morbid hints, and half-formed foetal suggestions of supernatural agencies, which eventually invested Moby Dick with new terrors unborrowed from anything that visibly appears. So that in many cases such a panic did he finally strike, that few who by those rumors, at least, had heard of the White Whale, few of those hunters were willing to encounter the perils of his jaw.

Happy birthday, Moby-Dick, published 150 years ago today. "I have written a wicked book, and feel spotless as the lamb," Melville wrote to his friend Nathaniel Hawthorne in the month of its debut.

Bush said the tribunals are

Bush said the tribunals are needed because "mass deaths, mass injuries and massive destruction of property" from future terrorism could "place at risk the continuity of the operations of the United States government." It is "not practicable," he said, to require the tribunals to abide by the "principles of law and the rules of evidence" that govern U.S. criminal prosecutions.
Washington Post: Military May Try Terrorism Cases.

Q&A, links re the new

Q&A, links re the new UK Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 and Emergency Anti-Terrorism Bill, which allows the British government to intercept email correspondence etc. Have they really nothing better to do?

Al-Jazeera's offices in Kabul have

Al-Jazeera's offices in Kabul have been destroyed by a US missile. Read about it at the BBC and translate Al-Jazeera's site at Ajeeb.com (requires log-in). Al-Jazeera claim that everyone know where their offices were, and suggest that it was deliberate.

Now you know fall's really

Now you know fall's really here.

originally posted by judlew

November 13, 2001

A straightforward guide to this

A straightforward guide to this weekend's Leonids by Michael Bolton.

originally posted by judlew

Krazy Kat Archive -- "George

Krazy Kat Archive -- "George Herriman's Krazy Kat (1911), a comic drama of love and rejection in the manner of a surreal commedia dell'arte, proved a hit with intellectuals because of its wit and advanced style." Via The Blacklist.

A visit to the Brautigan

A visit to the Brautigan Library by Jessamyn West.

The Working Writer by Susan

The Working Writer by Susan Wiggs

When I was in graduate school I took a course from B.F. Skinner, the famous behavior scientist, who taught us the importance of PRDs in self-motivation. He suggested rewarding increments of work with single kernels of popcorn. The true artist substitutes M&Ms for popcorn because really, how motivating is dry popcorn, anyway?
Indeed.

A visit to the Brautigan

A visit to the Brautigan Library by Jessamyn West.

A recent GeekLog post leads

A recent GeekLog post leads to some informative comparisons of slash-style website systems.

So I'm sitting here listening

So I'm sitting here listening to Bush invite Putin to his ranch and reading the news:

Yahoo - Will anti-terror war revive ill-fated Afghan pipeline?

People are dusting this (idea) off again.

In case anybody thinks it's about, uh, horses or something. Or even terrorists.

originally posted by judlew

The New Yorker's Rebecca Mead

The New Yorker's Rebecca Mead is another writer with a website. Like colleague Malcolm Gladwell, she puts her mag fare online. You may know her as the woman who wrote "You've Got Blog". Also recommended: this profile of Gwen Shamblin, an author who derives dieting diatribes from Scripture.

The New Yorker's Rebecca Mead

The New Yorker's Rebecca Mead is another writer with a website. Like colleague Malcolm Gladwell, she puts her mag fare online. You may know her as the woman who wrote "You've Got Blog". Also recommended: this profile of Gwen Shamblin, an author who derives dieting diatribes from Scripture.

On the public radio tip,

On the public radio tip, two from The New York Times: NPR's Story Project Proves Truth Is Stranger, Public Radio's Private Guru.

Firefighters admit the strain on

Firefighters admit the strain on their emotions has not been helped by the media and public elevating them to the status of celebrities. 'Firefighters are pretty humble guys but this hero worship is making life very hard,' said one. 'When I saw firefighters on the cover of Vanity Fair I thought: "Oh-oh, this is gonna get bad"... firefighters don't read Vanity Fair, they read Sports Illustrated and Playboy.'
Present at Ground Zero: dioxins, PCBs, benzene, lead, sulphur dioxide, copper, chromium, gold bullion, predatory packs of 'Sex and the City' women, a million DNA samples, lawyers, fettucini, Candice Bergen mopping the floor ...

November 12, 2001

There is a grotesque irony,

There is a grotesque irony, as firefighters dig through the rubble, that economic recovery is defined in Congress as tax breaks for wealthy people and corporations. We must beware of large corporations that wrap themselves in the flag to advance their narrow interests. They are the modern version of "war profiteers."
...
Since the mid-1960s, the "pay ratio," or difference between the highest and lowest paid workers in an average company, has widened from 44:1 to today's high of 209:1.3 Even Business Week, in its 1997 annual pay round-up, declared that "executive compensation is out of control."

Chuck Collins' new commentary is featured at Recovery Watchdog, a new project of United for a Fair Economy. The stats above and much more can also be found on their National Campaign to Close the Wage Gap page.

originally posted by elihu

The daily CBC show Outfront

The daily CBC show Outfront features newcomers to radio telling personal stories. There are lots of shows online. Start with two by Richard Marsella: one about making bad art in his hometown, the other about being a closet Rush geek.

24th Century Apartment - eBay

24th Century Apartment - eBay Item # 1028368712

originally posted by dm8k

Tom leaves three days later,

Tom leaves three days later, drained from lack of sleep and fried from staring at his monitor. With his jacket empty of weed, another workday stares him in the face. It's been a weekend muffled in sensory white noise, a visit to a cocoon of headphones, pixels and dope, and he'll do it again next Friday.
High Score (Salon.com).

"This weekend I had a

"This
weekend I had a hole drilled through my skull."

Move over nedlog -- German

Move over nedlog -- German schoolgirl Annika Irmler has the world's longest tongue, as verified by the Guinness Book people. Anagrams are left as an exercise for the reader.

There's time in history when

There's time in history when it's time to praise God, but now is not the time.
What Ken Kesey's saying to God right about now.

originally posted by judlew

The BBC also provides a

The BBC also provides a news ticker service, updated every few minutes.

Adding and Subtracting -- this

Adding and Subtracting -- this has got to be a hoax.

A plane has crashed in

A plane has crashed in Queens, NY. From what I can gather, it crashed shortly after taking off from JFK. No one knows why it happened so don't freak out too badly. CNN.com is crushed but you can read the news at robots.cnn.com. The relevant story is here, and (as usual) Metafilter has scooped the media and you can best follow the developing story in this thread. Also if you're stuck in an office and away from a TV like myself, you might want to download Apple's Quicktime 5 and watch the BBC World News Quicktime stream.
Yahoo full coverage

November 11, 2001

More than 113,000 voters

More than 113,000 voters cast ballots for two or more presidential candidates. Of those, 75,000 chose Mr. Gore and a minor candidate; 29,000 chose Mr. Bush and a minor candidate. Because there was no clear indication of what the voters intended, those numbers were not included in the consortium's final tabulations.
Major media outlets are saying "Bush Would've Won" in the headlines, but the not-so-fine print makes it clear that many more Florida voters went to the polls wanting Gore to be president. The most powerful man in the world should not be using phrases like "Let's Roll" and "Dead or Alive."

Recently I got an interesting

Recently I got an interesting publisher s rejection, saying that my novel is "deeply European" and that it will be difficult to fight the resistance of American readers towards European literature. What does "deeply European" mean was not explained. Recent issue of The Washington Post had a theme on the global success of American TV and film industry. Some American TV-shows run in forty or fifty countries round the world and bring an enormous profit to the American entertainment industry. The author of the article, although a bit surprised by the success of the American TV-serial, Buffie, the Slayer ironically concluded: Only Talibans did not buy it! And so it goes: nobody likes to be labelled as Taliban. We all know what that means.
Dubravka Ugresic on stereotypes: yuck versus yummy.

Britain is to be placed

Britain is to be placed under a state of 'public emergency'. Anti-terrorist legislation will allow internment without trial of suspected terrorists, as we opt out of Article 5 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which bans detention without trial. So, now that the events of 11 September which 'threaten the life of the nation' have been dealt with, we can now catch up on all that lost sleep.

I worked last night, all

I worked last night, all night. The immense devastation, smoking and steaming in the cool air, illuminated by artificial light against the black sky appeared more eerie than it had been the in the light of day. From most vantage points, beams of light shining up into the sky, from huge self contained light plants, illuminated the rubble piles from behind making the already surreal mountains of destruction appear more imposing while at the same time strangely beautiful. The beauty that quickly vanishes as you get closer and watch the awesome and dangerous work going on.
(the flow) Insider's report: Bechtel Engineer's Chronicle of Ground Zero Excavation. Thanks to Electrolite.

November 10, 2001

French Reporter Tells of Days

French Reporter Tells of Days Held in Jail by the Taliban (nytimes)

Mr. Peyrard, who speaks some Pashto but was detained with two Pakistani journalists who translated for him, said that the younger guards liked to practice their English with him, repeating: "This is a jail. This is a cell. This is a mouse." When the American planes came over, they would shout: "This is Mister Bush." At one point, when the bombardments slowed they shouted "This is Mister Bush droopy."

This is where you can

This is where you can listen to the BBC's documentary radio programme on the David Irving libel trial, broadcast earlier this week: 'The background to one of the biggest libel trials of recent history. David Irving, the now discredited revisionist historian lost his case and three subsequent appeals. The programme features unique contributions and an interview with the judge.'

DC's own Politics and Prose

DC's own Politics and Prose Bookstore and Coffeehouse presents an annotated reading list titled Books For Understanding Old and New Worlds.

From the Guardian, Giles Foden's

From the Guardian, Giles Foden's pick of books on Afghanistan. Here you can find Radio Afghanistan's selection.

Re Ken Kesey's death, BBC

Re Ken Kesey's death, BBC announcement, which includes links to, among other things, zane kesey's site.

Is today's Mutts a nod

Is today's Mutts a nod to Lynda Barry?

November 9, 2001

Ken Kesey is in critical

Ken Kesey is in critical condition recovering from surgery for a tumor on his liver. (Who's Ken Kesey?) U: He has passed away.

In honor of the heroes

In honor of the heroes at "ground zero," let's roll!

Let's roll!

Let's roll!

Let's roll!

Let's roll!

Let's roll!

Let's roll!

DJs at Washington, D.C.'s FedEx

DJs at Washington, D.C.'s FedEx Field have been dropping Fugazi's "Waiting Room" into the mix. The Washington City Paper checks in with frontman Ian MacKaye for his reaction.

Following up on my comment

Following up on my comment below on the racist frat boys in Alabama, here's a few anti-racist education resources:




originally posted by elihu

Now being broadcast in Afghanistan:

Now being broadcast in Afghanistan:

"Attention people of Afghanistan! As you may have heard, the partnership of nations is dropping yellow humanitarian daily rations. These rations are square shaped and packaged in plastic. They are full of good nutritious Halal food. In areas far from where we are dropping food, we are dropping cluster bombs. Although it is unlikely, it is possible that not every bomb will explode on impact. These bombs are yellow in color and are can-shaped. Do not confuse the cylinder-shaped bomb with the rectangular food bag."





Georgia Rep. Cynthia McKinney shows what US cluster bombs and food ration package look like. They are identical in color and size, and differ only in shape.

originally posted by zagg

We agreed to make several

We agreed to make several design changes, mainly closer monitoring of blood pressure and omitting the opportunity for placebo subjects who still met inclusion criteria for PTSD at the final evaluation to enroll in an open label extension study during which they would receive MDMA.
On November 2, Rick Doblin had a "calm, serious and respectful" conference call with the FDA: His MDMA-assisted psychotherapy study has been approved.

originally posted by judlew

"Americans have the right to

"Americans have the right to express themselves, and that is sacred. But there is not, and never has been, a constitutional right to force everybody else in society to listen during school hours."
Getting kicked out of school for peace, on Counterpunch.

originally posted by judlew

The range of issues and

The range of issues and less defensive tone are wildly different from what American viewers get on network or cable news programs, which share a myopic view and a tone that says, "They'd love us if only they understood us."
The New York Times compares BBC reporting on U.S. bombing in Afghanistan with the American networks' own take on affairs. (via MediaNews)

"Parties in Brooklyn are a

"Parties in Brooklyn are a bit more chill and laid-back, less thumb-up-their-ass than Manhattan," says Ingram, whose Sessions party is only two months old. "People are less concerned about what you're wearing and more concerned about having a good time. And people dance in Brooklyn!"
Push Push in the Flatbush.

originally posted by xowie

"Let's Roll?" Did Bush really

"Let's Roll?"

Did Bush really say "Let's Roll?" Since I unplugged my TV the other day (I'm moving) baseball has eliminated two teams and our president asked us all to "Roll?" I do really like this image from CNN, though. Maybe we can turn it into a strip?




We must sacrifice a lot

We must sacrifice a lot for this war, for this one-sided dropping of bombs and food. We must not negotiate, for that is weak. We are not weak. We are proud. We will proudly drop bombs and not question motives. We will blindly accept whatever our leaders tell us because that is the American way. Only communists question their leaders. Americans stand up for our way of life by not speaking our opinions during this vital time.
A joker gets off at Free Republic's expense? (scroll down)

November 8, 2001

Any time you encounter someone

Any time you encounter someone who says racism no longer exists in America, or at least is "no longer a major problem," send them to this link.


Auburn, Alabama- On Nov. 5 the fraternity's Auburn University chapter was
suspended, along with the Auburn chapter of Beta Theta Pi, for "potentially
offensive and racist conduct" at Halloween parties on Oct. 25 and 27.



Photographs from Delta Sigma Phi's party showed fraternity members in
blackface and KKK costumes. Some even went so far as to simulate the
lynching of a member in blackface wearing a T-shirt bearing the name FUBU.



Read the rest of the article and 3 pages of pictures (taken from frat
website)



http://www.tolerance.org/news/article_hate.jsp?id=319



For resources on what students can do to respond to and prevent hate on
campus visit www.usstudents.org and print or download "Organizing Against
Hate: Quick Response Guide" organizing guide for students.





To subscribe to the "Struggle for Access" listserve, an update and
announcement listserve of the Student of Color Campus Diversity Project of
the United States Student Association; reply with your name, school, and
email to cdp@usstudents.org, write "subscribe" in the subject line.



For more information on the Campus Diversity Project please visit our
website at http://www.usstudents.org/cgi-bin/ussa?/cdp.

More about the Enduring Freedom

More about the Enduring Freedom Trading Cards....


He [Topps Trading Card Co. CEO Arthur Shorin] said he sees the cards as a chance to educate children about the events unfolding from the September 11 attacks.



They are picking up bits and pieces of the events from television and newspapers, "but kids need to get information on their own terms," he said. "This is their medium."



Nearly half of the "Enduring Freedom" trading cards feature military hardware -- F-16s, B-2 bombers and F-117 stealth fighters in action -- and contain statistical data that Shorin said would give kids a sense of security and power.



He did hint that the company would issue another batch of cards in the series he dubbed "Freedom's Force," involving high-tech equipment special forces employ in combat such as night vision scopes.





From Company Flow, Workers Needed:


My customers are children for whom we manufacture war toys. We have an electronic computer programmed with the politics of the government. The goverment is our client. We feed the computer data on upcoming wars and revolutions. It tells us what kind of toys to produce to condition children from birth. Workers needed in the miniature plastic bomb shop


Another great hotlist from silver

Another great hotlist from silver surfer Judith Lewis.

originally posted by xowie

DC's own Politics and Prose

DC's own Politics and Prose Bookstore and Coffeehouse presents an annotated reading list titled Books For Understanding Old and New Worlds.

I recently sold some records

I recently sold some records on Ebay for the first time ever, a sad reduction. But in the process of looking through my collection I realized I had not listened to the UMCs album "The Four Horsemen" more than a handful of times. The four songs on side D may be the best [insert typical dj exaggeration here]. When I purchased the album 3 years ago I simply was not ready. I'm still not ready - maybe no one is?

Mantle from the Yankees, Buckwheat and then Spanky
Froggy and with Idi, drink the Tetley Tea leaves
X'll get wreck wreck, breakin your neck neck
Your brain is the seed, like a bird I go peck peck
Don't call me no Jeff-Jeff, Keith no Sweat Sweat
You can be dog dog, cat and my pet pet
As I go woo woo, yo B I'm so smooth smooth
Rhymin like Wild Bill, strong and I feel feel
Suckers ain't jack jack, jumpin on Zapp Zapp
Thinkin they funk funk, soft and they punk punk
Like they in jail jail, soft and they swing soft
But I gotta dip dip, you stay off my tip tip
(Why?) Inside Hermin's Head, I'm clockin fat knots

who's marketing this war? for

who's marketing this war? for one, the Rendon Group.

Writing a decade ago, Secunda foreshadowed the kind of coverage we're now seeing. "In the aftermath of the war with Iraq, strategic planners, preparing for future wars, are unquestionably examining the lessons gleaned from this triumphant experience. One of the most important lessons learned is the necessity of mobilizing strong public support, through the projection of a powerful and tightly controlled PR program, with particular effort directed toward the realization of positive news coverage."

Normon Solomon covering them at MediaBeat. Wayne Grytting also covers them at American Newspeak.

originally posted by elihu

Daypop: body bags

Daypop: body bags

Use your GameBoy camera to

Use your GameBoy camera to take color pictures! Now if only he could turn my GameBoy printer into a color printer!

(via slashdot)

The new L.A. novel is

The new L.A. novel is supposed to be rough, tough and gritty. Rachel Resnick's Go West Young F*cked-Up Chick is all of that, and I enjoyed it immensely, although maybe that's because half the book is about one of my favorite ex-girlfriends.

Anastasia curls her rubber-flex vavoom body up on a restaurant booth seat, her black bra poking through a stained and tattered black vest that's missing a button, babbling lovely as a backwoods brook released from the fetters of a makeshift dam, boldly racing from Kant to cryogenics to Lorena Bobbit's trial, all the images sparkling like skybound drops of water shining with exuberant randomness and rapture, and as she rambles she doodles on a tablecloth, a balloon-bursting head, tiny dot eyes and mouth. She then fills in the frame of the skull with a million stars. "This is my head," she says.
Two great L.A. non-novels are Sanyika Shakur's Monster and Wallbangin' by Susan A. Phillips.

originally posted by xowie

There are major disputes -

There are major disputes - about agricultural subsidies and dumping, about tariffs and the patenting of life forms. The most contentious issue is drug patents. India, Brazil, Thailand and a coalition of African countries want clear language stating that patents can be overridden to protect public health. The US and Canada are not just resisting - they are resisting even as their own delegates head for Qatar popping discount Cipros, muscled out of Bayer using exactly the kind of pressure tactics they are calling unfair trade practices.
Doha, the economic frontline by Naomi Klein.

originally posted by xowie

November 7, 2001

The stuff that turns oil

The stuff that turns oil into margarine. The stuff that made the Hindenburg float. The stuff that combines with oxygen to make water and with carbon to make methane. The stuff that sends the space shuttle skyward and could someday power your car, office building, house, cell phone, even your hearing aid. The stuff that could clean up the planet.

High hopes for hydrogen.

originally posted by judlew

I was googling "emergence" (see

I was googling "emergence" (see the first chapter of Emergence by Steven Johnson) but before I could get anywhere I got stuck watching the glider gun. I love the glider gun!

From wood s lot: Waking

From wood s lot:

Waking Up In Time by Peter Russell

A Speech Without the Speaker by Jaggi Singh

Anarchism and the Anti-Globalization Movement by Barbara Epstein



From Follow Me Here:

Torture Seeps Into Discussion by News Media (The New York Times)

A peek at Al-Qaeda's Encyclopedia of Jihad from The Sunday Times

FDA approves Ecstasy therapy tests

We are watching!

We are watching!

While firemen and police were

While firemen and police were racing into the fires of hell in downtown New York, and now, while our soldiers and airmen and Marines are putting their lives on the line in Afghanistan, the Administration and its Congressional allies are allowing multinational companies to make their most concerted effort in twenty years to roll back clean-air measures, exploit public lands and stuff the pockets of their executives and shareholders with undeserved cash. Against such crass exploitation, unequaled since the Teapot Dome scandal, it is every patriot's duty to join the loyal opposition. Even in war, politics is about who gets what and who doesn't. If the mercenaries and the politicians-for-rent in Washington try to exploit the emergency and America's good faith to grab what they wouldn't get through open debate in peacetime, the disloyalty will not be in our dissent but in our subservience. The greatest sedition would be our silence.
Which America Will We Be Now? by Bill Moyers

Islam — The Power of

Islam — The Power of Women (The Globalist)

One key cause for the inability of Islamic countries to compete economically is that from Morocco to Iran, women do not go to work. The most extreme case is of course Afghanistan. There, we see the tragedy of highly trained women — if they haven't already fled the Taliban's harsh regime — being forced to sit at home, even when the country desperately needs their skills.


Women doctors cannot heal sick patients, women engineers cannot design repairs on buildings or roads, and women managers cannot help bring order from the country's chaos — all because of their gender.

A conflict not between good

A conflict not between good and evil, but over control of petroleum reserves - from The Smirking Chimp.

I'm the boss? George W.

I'm the boss?
George W. Bush discussing lunch plans with French President Jacques Chirac.

November 6, 2001

National Geographic called it a

National Geographic called it a 'great vacation spot.'"
Wired News on an Afghan Archivist of Culture.

originally posted by judlew

Brian Libby, great student of

Brian Libby, great student of architecture, the Phillip Lopate of the Northwest, quiet like a cricket player, hails from the same town as NY baseball legend Scott Brosius. He also interviewed David Lynch.

New Observations Online issue 125:

New Observations Online issue 125: Comics via Media Backlog.

When of tired of playing

When of tired of playing with Diamonds, Spades, Hearts and Clubs try Joints, Leafs, Bongs and Buds.

originally posted by xowie

There is more than one

There is more than one way to respond to the horror of Sept. 11. And there is more than one kind of patriotism. We forget this. You do not have to rally around Bush and tolerate Cheney's chthonic creepiness and wave a frantic flag and believe every scripted half-truth that drizzles out of the Pentagon, applaud the nonstop attacks on an already demolished nation. Pro-America does not mean pro-war.
Evil Evildoers Of Evil (SF Gate). Somebody (Mark Morford) has been reading mnftiu.

The cross posting lovefest between

The cross posting lovefest between movementbuilding.org and rW continues:


  • 5% discount coupon for Vege Dim Sum House. (update: beXn notes that the coupon is expired. The site is still nice, though)
  • "Banana - A Chinese American Experience" starts November 16 at the Lower East Side Tenement Museum. Banana is a mixed media exhibition that explores the experience of "Bananas" - Chinese American children whose identity falls into the gap between Chinese traditions and Western culture.

Egyptian novelist Ahdaf Soueif visits

Egyptian novelist Ahdaf Soueif visits Cairo to hear the view from the ground.

"The mission was laid on

"The mission was laid on like General Motors coming to the Afghan war, like we did in Vietnam," Mr Hersh said. At the same time, a company of rangers parachuted onto a Kandahar airfield in an operation portrayed the next day in dramatic TV footage. But in his article, Mr Hersh said that before the drop, an army pathfinder team had checked that the airfield was free of Taliban forces. The raid was for the benefit of the cameras.
The October 20 mission by U.S. special forces was a bungled disaster.

originally posted by xowie

November 5, 2001

Two from today's Washington Post:

Two from today's Washington Post: Jonathan Yardley weighs in on the Jonathan Franzen/Oprah Winfrey tiff (which, if I were a good blogger, I'd dig up some background on and link it, but maybe someone else would like to undertake that?); and a review of Jabari Asim's Not Guilty: Twelve Black Men Speak Out on Law, Justice, and Life, which seems worth a read.

On that note, I'd like to compile a list of important books to read that focus on race and racism--or, if such lists already exist, links to those would suffice. If there's not such a list already, we could work on one here and then make a box/page/something or other and stick it over in the sidebar. Suggestions?

It's one of many ironies

It's one of many ironies of the current situation that the US is declaring war on the Afghan Taliban, a group of devout, disciplinarian theological 'students' who resemble many of the culty puritan fringe groups which have long helped to define the soul and essence of the US: Shakers, Mormons, Baptists and Brethren. Perhaps it's this similarity which has shaped US foreign policy over the past thirty years, leading it consistently to favour religious regimes over secular, democratic ones. Given the choice between God and democracy, the US chooses God.

A Thought for the Day from Momus.

originally posted by judlew

The adult actors perform admirably

The adult actors perform admirably -- particularly the oversized Robbie Coltrane as the giant Hogwarts groundskeeper, Hagrid. But the 12-year-old actor Daniel Radcliffe -- who looks almost exactly like "The Weakest Link" hostess Anne Robinson -- brings a disappointing minimalism to the plum role of Harry. Faced with stuff that would thoroughly gross out most kids -- from vomit-flavored candy to a splat of dragon saliva in his eye -- Radcliffe routinely responds with the mildest of shrugs.
The Washington Post's T. R. Reid on Harry Potter's UK debut.

"We felt horrible when we

"We felt horrible when we learned that the Red Cross … warehouse had been struck," White House chief of staff Andrew Card told Meet the Press. So horrible that at 8 o'clock on the evening of Oct. 25, two more Hornets dropped two 2,000 lb. guided weapons on the warehouses. The next morning a B-52 bomber delivered three more 2,000 lb. smart bombs. A third Hornet dropped another bomb that missed the warehouses and hit a residential area 700 feet to the south.
William Arkin, Bombing the Red Cross.

originally posted by xowie

It's your hatt, baby.

It's your hatt, baby.

We should be putting the

We should be putting the current international developments in context rather than just having wrestling matches between colourful characters. I've already started writing X-Men as a pacifist comic.
Scot plans to make Batman hang up cape (The Sunday Times) Apparently the world's greatest comic book characters, entrusted to the care of a radical, decidedly non-mainstream writer, are set to grow up all over again. Also thanks to kindall.

Jerry Kindall says: According to

Jerry Kindall says:

According to the latest Ansible, when Isaac Asimov's Foundation was published in Arabic, the title was translated as... "Al-Qaeda." Apparently Asimov's future history is as popular among Arabs as it is among English speakers, and one "Middle East expert" thinks it might well be where bin Laden's terrorist organization got its name. China Miéville notes that the term has "no political precedent" in the Arabic world and says: "Unlikely as it sounds, this is the only theory anyone can come up with."

The Almost Complete Codes List

The Almost Complete Codes List (AVS TiVo Forum) features new codes and easter eggs for the latest TiVo software update.

Leonid Meteor Shower Predictions for

Leonid Meteor Shower Predictions for 30 U.S. Cities for 2001

originally posted by judlew

Khaled rocks. You can too.

Khaled rocks. You can too.

Sometimes, it feels like I

Sometimes, it feels like I can't do anything right. This morning, for example, I dropped my toast on the floor. (Guess which side it landed on.) Then, when I got to work, I realized I'd forgotten my desk keys—again! I was this close to getting seriously down on myself when I remembered something I definitely have done right in my life: I was born in the U.S.A.! Just think where I could've been born: North Korea, Estonia, Cambodia, Burkina Faso. I could be dead by now, killed by starvation, malaria, tidal wave, rebel insurgents, drought, civil war, well poisoning, a land mine... I won't bore you, but the list goes on and on!

The Onion puts things in perspective again: Hang In There! You Live In The Richest Nation In The World!

originally posted by judlew

Am I a Terrorist or

Am I a Terrorist or a Member of Al-Qaeda or a Taliban Fighter or Not?

If you like explodingdog, you

If you like explodingdog, you will probably like the book. Please buy one so I can make some of my money back.
I like explodingdog.

Hijackers' Meticulous Strategy of Brains,

Hijackers' Meticulous Strategy of Brains, Muscle and Practice

originally posted by judlew

A Deliberate Strategy of Disruption

A Deliberate Strategy of Disruption (washingtonpost.com) "If you overstay your visa -- even one day -- we will arrest you." Do terrrorists overstay their visas?

originally posted by judlew

November 4, 2001

Pratt Slams Unbeaton Ton.

Pratt slams unbeaten ton

Hyderabad - Propelled by an elegant unbeaten knock of 114 by Garry Pratt, England reached 256 for 4 on the opening day of the third and final under-19 Test against India at Lal Bahadur Stadium here today.

Joing skipper Ian Bell after the openers were dismissed by Amit Mishra for 66, Pratt dominated the the day's proceedings and registered a 102-run partnership for the 3rd wicket.

Pratt toyed with the India bowlers during his unfinished essay of 114 runs of 194 balls in 270-minute stay at the wicket.

He scored runs with a flourish lofting spinner Vidyut Sivaramakrishnan over long-on and punished Mishra with a second 6 over long-off. Pratt, who scored 28 and 66 in the first Test at Mumbai, compiled his 114 with the help of 13 fours scored all around the wicket.

Playing the role of anchor, skipper Bell rotated the strike back to in-form Pratt wherever possible and in the process scored 46 off 132 balls including 6 fours before being traped leg before wicket by Dharmichand at the fag end of the day.

For as long as

For as long as I can remember, the Yankees have been America's Team and for as long as I can remember people have tried to deny it. This has become a complicated issue now that some people have allowed themselves to temporarily root for the Yankees. They claim they are rooting for New York as a symbol of their nation under attack. They are really giving themselves permission to get in touch with their feelings briefly. In nature, all fans are Yankee fans. There is only one true team.
Arrogant Yankee propaganda from the New York Times. Let me take this opportunity to guarantee a Yankees loss tonight, if not a perfect game for Curt Schilling.

So you want to build

So you want to build your own MacQuarium?

originally posted by xowie

NYTM: How 'The Simpsons' survives.

NYTM: How 'The Simpsons' survives.

originally posted by xowie

Random-Abstract.com - Formerly known as

Random-Abstract.com - Formerly known as Totally-Useless.com shares this list of domains.

Random dotcoms using whois off of networksolutions
I am sure I missed a whole bunch of them.
Random Drivel.com
Random Whim.com
Random Walks.com
Random Effect.com
Random Babe.com
Random Abandon.com
Random Element.com
Random Games.com
Random Ideas.com
Random Joke.com
Random Penguin.com
Random Oila.com
Random Ridge.com
Random Scribbles.com
Random Soft.com
Random Surf.org
Random Task.com
Random Thought.com
Random Unity.com
Random Violence.com

November 3, 2001

via MeFi: A picture of

via MeFi: A picture of weblogs. Cool! randomWalks is represented.

originally posted by xowie

In words unusual for a

In words unusual for a defense lawyer, Wixted said the case was not about whether the rabbi was a "miserable little piece of dung as a human being" but whether there was sufficient evidence to convict him of soliciting his wife's killing.
Dramatic summations send rabbi case to jury.

originally posted by xowie

November 2, 2001

TV News Killing Our Precious

TV News Killing Our Precious Verbs (washingtonpost.com)

Pentagon: Afghan village a 'legitimate

Pentagon: Afghan village a 'legitimate target' (CNN.com) Following up on an earlier story, I guess the US position on bombing innocent people is crystal clear now, if it hadn't been before:

We hit what we wanted to hit... The people there are dead because we wanted them dead.

B-52s, the crude weapon of

B-52s, the crude weapon of the frustrated bully, should be banished to the scrapyard. This campaign, as ministers and their defence advisers are finally admitting, has shown up the poverty not only of military thinking but of the very utility of weapons of war.
The Guardian: Return of the B-52s.
The bombing is sending a powerful unintended message to Muslims everywhere that bin Laden is telling the truth when he says that America is at war with Islam. If the bombing campaign carries on into Ramadan, the Muslim fasting month, Al Qaeda's hand will be strengthened even more.
CSM: Stop bombing and start thinking 'hearts and minds'.

originally posted by xowie

The Terrorist Attack on America:

The Terrorist Attack on America: an astrological perspective, by Liz Greene.

NYC wants to build a

NYC wants to build a giant dome (last 2 paragraphs) over the WTC site so work can continue through the winter.

You can now watch all

You can now watch all of Pixar's (Steve Jobs' other company) short films at the Pixar website via Apple's Quicktime. The server seems to be slashdotted so be sure to check back if you can't get through -- this is some witty and beautiful computer animation.

Sisters and brothers should deliver

Sisters and brothers should deliver their cash holdings, especially the coin collections in socks, pots and bottles, as well as amounts in secret funds, to the bookkeeper.
Euro will leave monks the poorer (smh.com.au) A notice in the Franciscans' magazine urges monks and nuns to forsake their hoarded currency and renew their vows of poverty.

"There were no Taliban in

"There were no Taliban in the village," said Ahmed, a mechanic who said he is about 20 years old. "There were no tanks or Taliban cars. They just killed innocent people. . . . The plane saw us, and they opened fire. We don't understand why they did that."
Villagers describe deadly airstrike.

originally posted by xowie

November 1, 2001

A cluster bomb scatters hundreds

A cluster bomb scatters hundreds of smaller "bomblets" over a wide area. The bomblets also happen to be the same color yellow as the humanitarian rations that U.S. planes are dropping to Afghan civilians.

cnn reports

originally posted by tragicM

A year ago I posted

A year ago I posted about joining a CSA (community supported agriculture) program. If I were as ambitious and meticulous as Rebecca Blood, I'd give you a careful analysis of whether joining such a program was worthwhile economically, with some consideration of the organic and local nature of the produce thrown in.

Being neither, I'm happy to report that we had a lot of fun getting fresh vegetables every week. We were unfamiliar with cooking (if not eating) some of the vegetables, which inspired us to try a bunch of new recipes -- exactly as I'd hoped when we signed up. I especially enjoyed the salad mix we got in early spring and summer and again in the last couple of weeks of the program in fall. Who knew arugula was the most delicious green on earth, and why didn't anyone tell me?

In the middle of the season they hooked up with a nearby orchard to offer a fruit share -- literally the day after I had been thinking of inquiring whether they had considered such a thing(!) -- and the locally grown apples were abundant (~dozen/week), crisp, and sweet.

I was a bit surprised we didn't get more tomatoes and corn, though I understand (thanks to the rad newsletter) that predatory herbivores were a problem this year. We also split a two-person share among my wife, father, and brother, so there you go. In any case we will surely participate again next year.

Skyscrapers are no longer being

Skyscrapers are no longer being designed; no one wants to live in them... Buildings will now be more sober, serving the people who live in them. Donald Trump made a big thing of inaugurating his Trump Tower but now he keeps a parachute in his office.
Buildings may never be the same, says Guggenheim architect (Independent News)

Ha'aretz: U.S. papers: FBI hunting

Ha'aretz: U.S. papers: FBI hunting suspected terrorists with Israeli passports. I saw a wire story in which US authorities were officially denying these reports yesterday, but today I wonder: could this be related to the "heightened state of alert" the FBI requested on Monday?

If you can't read Arabic,

If you can't read Arabic, you might find the Al Jazeera web site less than useful. But Sreenath Sreenivasan has a solution: Arabic-translating site Ajeeb.com.

From the NYT, more on

From the NYT, more on poetry and 9.11. Note that Yeats' "Easter 1960" (third graf) is really "Easter 1916"—though I admit I would like to know what he might have said in 1960, too.

SFBG: Goth is dead. Long

SFBG: Goth is dead. Long live Goth.

originally posted by xowie

"It’s not like I had

"It’s not like I had this un-ambiguous thing of ‘Oh my god, we must stop bombing and turn it over to the World Court.’ So these were more just personal comics about how I’d been feeling about the whole situation. And I was drinking heavily when I made them, frankly. I’ve gone through a lot of Jim Beam in the evenings, because I’ve been working whole days in a midtown Manhattan office, listening to sirens and re-booting cnn.com, which is like the worst thing you can do to yourself psychologically."
LAW: an interview with David Rees, Judith spins with DJ Irene and Robert Fink, and a list of techno guides.

originally posted by xowie