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December 31, 2001

The Spiders, Part 2, holy

The Spiders, Part 2, holy shit.

originally posted by xowie

A museum of picture book

A museum of picture book art to open in Northampton, Mass, thanks to Eric Carle. Another good reason to move back there.

The euro will see the

The euro will see the first dawn not in Europe, but on the island of Reunion in the Indian Ocean.
The BBC ran an enlightening story the other day on the Euro's postcolonial trail. Also, if anyone's in France right now, will you do me a big favor and save one of these for me?

originally posted by judlew

December 30, 2001

"There's just not enough time

"There's just not enough time to read," says Sherrill Cheda, a retired arts administrator. "My regret is that life isn't long enough to read more. My biggest fear is that I might go blind and not be able to read."

Help for coming to terms with your own "reading mortality," if you haven't done so already.
thanks, coloredgirls.com

Our friends at The Nation

Our friends at The Nation have put together a nice package on globalized media, centered around a damning chart of conglomerated ownership put into perspective by NYU Prof. Mark Crispin Miller and supported by a bunch of great essays and a call for reform.

originally posted by xowie

via boing boing.

via boing boing.

originally posted by xowie

December 29, 2001

Finally the 'War on Terrorism'

Finally the 'War on Terrorism' is achieving its policy objectives. Osama bin Laden is looking haggard. We may not have caught him or brought him to justice but, at the cost of thousands of innocent Afghan lives, billions of dollars of US citizens' money and the civil liberties of the Free World, we have got him looking haggard.
I remain, sir, Haggard of the Hindu Kush, by Terry ("Cardinal Biggles") Jones.

originally posted by xowie

On the shores of Rawal

On the shores of Rawal Lake, a key conservation area only about 10 minutes drive from the centre of Islamabad, there is a sound that cannot be heard this year - a whole bird population which has suddenly gone missing.

Fallout so strange it's nearly poetic.

originally posted by judlew

NPR's Morning Edition 12.31.01Shazia Mirza

NPR's Morning Edition 12.31.01

Shazia Mirza is unique among standup comics. Mirza is a practicing Muslim -- and a woman -- who likes to poke fun at her own culture. "People ask me," she says. "Why does your mother walk five steps behind your father? I say because he looks better from behind." Join Morning Edition Monday to hear more of her unique humor.

The American Library Association has

The American Library Association has announced a third annual list of the Best Free Reference Web Sites.

Alarmed, perhaps, by such patent

Alarmed, perhaps, by such patent lunacy--and also by the danger that America's own coalition against terror, in which India and Pakistan have vied for leading roles, will be busted up--the White House, through its spokesman Ari Fleischer, counsels "restraint." India is unimpressed. Counsel of restraint from a nation that has just overthrown the government of one country and now has five or six more in its gunsights can hardly be expected to carry weight with one whose Parliament has been attacked, as it believes, by its enemy of almost half a century.

When the Bush Administration began its war on terrorism, announcing that if you weren't with us you were against us, did it imagine that from the dizzying heights of its sole superpowerdom it would command the nations, rewarding some, raining bombs on others, and dominating all, according to its sole interest and pleasure? The nations have had other ideas. Preferring American practice to American preaching, they have taken up arms in their own causes, just as previously many built nuclear arsenals whose use again urgently threatens the world. We have not one unified war on terrorism but many clashing wars. It's hard to say which are more dangerous--those that, like Israel's, seek to join the American one or those that, like India's, seem to undercut it. All are burning out of control. For now, the instruments that alone might stop them--negotiation, treaties, a readiness to compromise, measures of disarmament--have been cast aside.
Jonathan Schell's Letter From Ground Zero to "The Nation" serves as a concise and powerful primer on current conflicts which threaten to expand drastically.

December 27, 2001

"Literary Traveler is an online

"Literary Traveler is an online magazine dedicated to the exploration of the literary imagination. We hope to bring you inspiring, informative, and unique articles about writers, and creative artists, and the places they traveled."

"It's a new style of

"It's a new style of terrorism."

What I read on my

What I read on my Blogger vacation: Ginger toonies. War on karaoke. Wynton Center. Al-Qaeda manual. Paul Battaglia. LA Weekly lists. How to subdue. "Strike Hard" campaign. Asteroid belt.
The Metamorphosis.

originally posted by xowie

Poor White Racism (a reply

Poor White Racism (a reply to A Question of Privilege)

In order to put and end to poor white racism, you have to understand the situation of poor whites. You do not learn how a gun works by inspecting bullet holes, you inspect the gun. The gun metaphor is very appropriate for poor white racism, because poor white racism is a mindless weapon. Someone else is pulling the trigger. (...)

This kind of racism is unique from the garden variety racism that is typical of, say, the middle class or upper classes (i.e. the kind of racism that has at least the potential to be remedied by the kind of therapy group work that people like Chris Crass devote all their time to). Garden variety racism comes from a presumed, mostly unconscious sense of superiority, which is reenforced by the dominant culture, of course. Even certain kinds of "anti-racism" are really just manifestations of this garden variety racism (i.e. "I'm such a big- hearted white boy for 'helping' those poor people of color"). (...)

Just as avoiding the issue of racism is a cop out, making semi-mystical claims that racism is an uncurable disease that we may never be rid of, is also a cop out, it allows people to relinquish their responisbility for stoping it, it also allows people in the white left to shirk the hard, ugly, unpleasant, and often unrewarding work of *really* trying to put an end to racism amongst white people in general. Racism, like rape, is fundamentally about power. Poor white racism is both a conscious and an unconscious false expression of power by a powerless group over an even more powerless group. (...)

Because the white left is largely middle class we end up with the spectacle of white suburban ARA youth fighting white working class skinheads. We have the oddity of having white activists dealing with thier own racism, or insisting that "everyone is oppressed", but refusing to organize in poor white communities because those communities are racist and sexist.
Be sure to read the enlightening discussion that follows the article.

December 26, 2001

FYI for those, like us,

FYI for those, like us, still dependent on

Blogger has
had a security breach. It appears
no permanent damage has been done, but as a precaution, we advise you
change your FTP password if you had it stored on
Blogger. U: Also, it wouldn't hurt to change your Blogger password, as well (go to one of your blogs, select team, and then click on your name).

De preacher was up preaching

De preacher was up preaching and he said, 'Every tongue got to confess; everybody got to stand in judgment for thyself; every tub got to stand on its own bottom.'

One little tee-ninchy woman in de amen corner said, 'Lordy, make my bottom wider.'
New Book Unveils Hurston's Buried Treasure (washingtonpost.com)

Approximately 8,000 eggs went into

Approximately 8,000 eggs went into this cake.

December 25, 2001

The Urban75 photo gallery has

The Urban75 photo gallery has got some great pix, the photography being themed around urban landscapes, street scenes, the kaleidoscope of British weather conditions, New York, Paris, Birmingham (?), and 'My Rock Hell'. Speaking of which, why are there no male groupies at Groupie Central?

Iceland launches energy revolution (BBC

Iceland launches energy revolution (BBC News)

People my age will see the first steps towards the hydrogen economy. My children will watch the whole transformation. My grandchildren, when they are grown, will live in this new economy where Iceland will be totally independent of imported energy, and where all the energy in the country comes from clean renewables.

The various ZNet Watch Sites

The various ZNet Watch Sites have been reorganized and collected into this great index page. The page is worth visiting for the A's alone: activism watch, africa watch, alternative media watch, anarchy watch, animal rights watch.

December 24, 2001

Shoe bomb graphic (Guardian Unlimited)

Shoe bomb graphic (Guardian Unlimited)

Stop! It is illegal to

Stop! It is illegal to spray graffiti here! We have just taken your photograph. We will use this photograph to prosecute you. Leave now!
Camera Becomes New Weapon in War on Graffiti

San Francisco voters approved a

San Francisco voters approved a $100 million bond to install as many rooftop solar panels in one year as are currently installed nationwide. The Long Island Power Authority has hooked 55 fuel cells to the grid to produce as much as 1 million kilowatt hours of power. Those are, of course, just a few of the big environmental stories you may have missed.

Remember the environment?

originally posted by judlew

Oops. The German state airline

Oops. The German state airline Lufthansa pulled this ad on 17 September. The text translates as 'admittedly, we like to hand over the controls to others from time to time'.

Replica of WTC in Christmas

Replica of WTC in Christmas lights.

originally posted by xowie

Saudi Arabia's Apartheid (washingtonpost.com) One

Saudi Arabia's Apartheid (washingtonpost.com)

One of the (still) untold stories is the cooperation of U.S. and other Western companies in enforcing sexual apartheid in Saudi Arabia. McDonald's, Pizza Hut, Starbucks, and other U.S. firms, for instance, maintain strictly segregated eating zones in their restaurants. The men's sections are typically lavish, comfortable and up to Western standards, whereas the women's or families' sections are often run-down, neglected and, in the case of Starbucks, have no seats.

December 23, 2001

Stop American Billions for Israeli

Stop American Billions for Israeli Bombs by Alisa Solomon. More here, here and here.

originally posted by xowie

speaking of julia roberts (which

speaking of julia roberts (which we were last week), someone should write a review about how ocean's 11 (the new one at least) is a wholesome movie for kids, to help them learn a healthy disrespect for casino owners and suchlike...

In a rare supporting role, Julia Roberts, as the embittered Tess Ocean, has far too little to do, despite getting a few choice scenes to play out near the end. The funniest moment in the whole movie arrives during the end credits when she is billed as "And Introducing Julia Roberts," as if this were her film debut. Delightful cameos by a who's-who of young television stars -- Joshua Jackson, Shane West, Holly Marie Combs, Barry Watson, and Topher Grace -- round out the cast.

read the whole moviezone review here. by the way, in the ensuing discussion, does anyone know of any of these big stars such as clooney or pitt who have come out publicly against the war? if you know of such a ref, please post it!

originally posted by elihu

December 22, 2001

Did you know? Some people

Did you know? Some people enjoy sharing books via binary newsgroups and even p2p!

originally posted by xowie

Far out PYL home game.

Far out PYL home game. (No trivia questions, just prizes and whammies.)

originally posted by xowie

Minimalism is the new black.

Minimalism is the new black. Create your own minimalist art with the Creedalizer. And if, unlike me, you're interested in what Don DeLillo has to say on 9-11, read this. I spotted the word 'disarticulation' and went back to my knitting.

December 21, 2001

The primary goal of Ftrain.com,

The primary goal of Ftrain.com, the goal which all other goals serve, is to make the site fully conscious and self-aware by 2051.
If anyone can do it, Paul Ford can.

Nathan Crombie -- who plays

Nathan Crombie -- who plays a creature called an orc in the blockbuster movie trilogy -- claimed he and a group of fellow actors got high EVERY DAY on ultra-strong grass called Thunderweed. They would sneak away between takes in New Zealand to smoke spliffs at the top of a tower on the set.
My drugs hobbit. And here's one about porn. Ok?

originally posted by xowie

Mumia lives! Now let him

Mumia lives! Now let him disappear by Dan Kennedy. Harsh, with interesting links.

originally posted by xowie

Your own body is a

Your own body is a phantom, one that your brain has temporarily constructed purely for convenience. I know this sounds astonishing, so I will demonstrate to you the malleability of your own body image and how you can alter it profoundly in just a few seconds.
If you have a chance to try these Jedi mind tricks, let me know how it turns out.

Michael Moore's latest message. Q:

Michael Moore's latest message. Q: Is it Osama or, as the Fox Nuisance Channel say, Usama? A: I like their spelling better, like "We put the 'USA' in USAma!".

So, let's all aim to

So, let's all aim to finish the god of small things by Jan. 1? Is that too late? That gives everyone a chance to finish, but too much mind for sideshow val's sieve like memory to forget the details.

December 20, 2001

Rachel's Compendium of Online Book

Rachel's Compendium of Online Book Discussions, et al. -- "Currently there's a lot of interest in book clubs, and, as far as I know, there's no place on the Web to find a listing of all of them. Hence, I'll give it a shot. To be a book club, in my mind, I believe there needs to be some type of time-sensitive element, and, preferably, some type of guided discussion. I'd further classify book clubs in four ways: Web-Based (text and comments on the web); Web-Enhanced (books read off-line and discussed via a web site); E-mail-Oriented (discussion occurring via an e-mail list); and Live Chat (via IRC or some other medium)." This page has a good set of links to mine for active book clubs and other resources.

The death toll has now

  • The death toll has now risen to 16 and the Cabinet has resigned. Here's the Guardian's special report on the Argentinian 'austerity riots'. Argentina has to pay its next installment of £650m in debt repayment to the IMF in January, while 15m live in poverty. Here's the Buenos Aires Herald online, and the Guardian piece contains links to a good few Spanish language sites.
  • Germany has just taken steps towards the legalisation of prostitution, although it won't necessarily improve the lot of asylum seekers working in the sex trade.
  • McDonald's have just adopted Asterix (in English here, and in French here) as their logo in France, a move obviously designed to piss everyone off. José Bové is certainly one won't be impressed, he of the 'Non à McMerde' fame, especially as he was imprisoned today for 6 years.
  • I heard Jackie Ballard being interviewed on the radio this morning. Jackie was a Liberal MP who lost her seat in the last UK elections, then went to Iran, loved it, and has now moved to Tehran to do a PhD on the impact of the internet on Iranian society and culture. Here she makes some interesting points about women's freedom, wearing the chador and how that bastard Auberon Waugh told her she had the perfect face for radio. And speaking of Iran, Jacques Derrida and Edward Said are planning to lecture there. Read about it at The Iranian.

Lone Wolf and Cub Ogami

Lone Wolf and Cub Ogami Action Figure "This is the main character of the classic manga saga. He comes complete with a detailed wheeled cart and Daigoro (Cub) figure, cloth banner with calligraphy, costume accessories (sandals, hat, cloth costume, etc.), and all the swords and other samurai weapons we see in the story, and is highly articulated. This figure stands 12 inches tall."

"like the needle... needle and spoon"

Palestine has finally been published.

Palestine has finally been published. I wonder if it will sell out quickly given the Current Situation. You can order it from the publisher Fantagraphics which is probably the best option, or from Amazon if like me you don't care about all those patents and things you pretend to care about when it's fashionable.

It was a dark and

It was a dark and stormy month... (eastbayexpress.com)

From his Oakland apartment, they watched in wonder as thousands of total strangers vehemently debated NaNoWriMo protocol and formed writing klatches groups on the official Yahoo site and dozens of unaffiliated ones. On MetaFilter, people posted queries such as "I wonder if it would be cheating to put together an outline before the November 1st start date?" and "Is it within the rules to use Benzedrine to fuel the fury?" There also were dissenters, who called the idea "fantastically horrible" and likely to produce "a stream-of-consciousness crapfest." "I was avidly following all of these things with my mouth agape," says Baty.

As the U.S. plows ahead

As the U.S. plows ahead and talks more and more about going after Iraq again, I offer a few links:

Don't believe the U.S. is just itching to go after Iraq for any reason? Do you remember this story? Somehow it doesn't quite mesh with further findings?

post by zagg

The full list of 110

The full list of 110 films used to make the three-minute montage The Spirit of America. Oh, the patriotic three-minute montage, I should have said.

originally posted by xowie

At the gym and on

At the gym and on the BART, San Francisco welcomes you.

originally posted by xowie

'Sugar from space may have

'Sugar from space may have helped life to begin on planet Earth billions of years ago.' This is great news! Sugar from space? I can see a comic strip and a new alterego coming on ...

December 19, 2001

December 21, 2001: Each year

December 21, 2001: Each year since 1990, on or near the first day of winter and the longest night of the year, the National Coalition for the Homeless (NCH) has sponsored National Homeless Persons' Memorial Day to bring attention to the tragedy of homelessness and to remember our homeless friends who have paid the ultimate price for our nation's failure to address this issue. In an effort to maximize the impact of the day, NCH encourages local and statewide groups, to join the effort. Last year, over 100 cities across the nation, from Detroit to Seattle, sponsored memorial events to honor those who have died and to recommit ourselves to the task of ending homelessness. An organizing manual for this year's Memorial Day can be found on this website. A hard copy can also be sent to organizations.
I ran into a Fighting Colonial on the Metro who now works at National Coalition for the Homeless. She gave me a flyer about the vigil they'll be having on Friday, but I've left it in my other coat. For those interested in the DC vigil this Friday, I will post more specific information in a follow-up comment tomorrow.

originally posted by Greer

Phil Agre's latest RRE pointers

Phil Agre's latest RRE pointers mailing includes links to some year-end "top ten" music lists. I've probably spent more time singing about the itsy-bitsy spider this year than I have listening to new music. What did I miss?

It looks like maybe 100,000

It looks like maybe 100,000 people, at least 80,000 people, most of them black, were not permitted to vote who had a legal right to vote in Florida. That story was simply not covered in the U.S. press. And that is how the election was won.

Here’s how they did it:
Guerrilla News Network interviews Greg Palast.

Socialcritic.org's Selected Readings in Social

Socialcritic.org's Selected Readings in Social Criticism is a stupendous directory of texts available online for your perusal and edification. Don't miss the concise list of war on terrorism readings -- an excellent primer of dissenting thought in these times of stifling conformity.

Lots of folks have linked

Lots of folks have linked to Owen Briggs' Design Rant recently but I just now got around to looking through it, and I see that this is crucial stuff -- required reading for anyone involved with web design in any capacity.

I've heard a lot about

I've heard a lot about how beautiful they are on Marketplace lately, but I hadn't seen any Dutch banknotes before now. Wow.

One year and one day

One year and one day after the death of Kirsty MacColl, I still like Kirsty.

Get those feet shoulder-length apart,

Get those feet shoulder-length apart, move one foot slightly forward, and take up as much of the dance floor as you can while you start your arms cranking back and forth. It might help if you pretend your shaking some maracas.
Skanking 101.

December 18, 2001

The ritual consists of interested

The ritual consists of interested humans arriving at a predetermined Wal-Mart at 12 noon on the first Sunday of every month and proceeding to push empty shopping carts slowly and silently through the aisles. Eventually, all of the participants locate one another and form a single-file chain of anti-shoppers which weaves, wanders, and whirls throughout the different departments of the store for about an hour. Overall, it is a soothing and fun experience for the actors, and perhaps a memorable spectacle for shoppers. It is a collective reclamation of space that is otherwise only used for buying and selling. It is a symbolic display of the will to resist the capitalist ideology. And, it is a living, breathing, moving, evolving sculpture.
Whirl-Mart: ritual resistance

Avoiding and Recovering from Colds

Avoiding and Recovering from Colds and Flus

Abu-Jamal Death Sentence Thrown Out

Abu-Jamal Death Sentence Thrown Out (AP)

A federal judge on Tuesday threw out the death sentence imposed nearly two decades ago on Mumia Abu-Jamal, revered by supporters worldwide as a crusader against racial injustice but reviled by others as an unrepentant cop-killer.

U.S. District Judge William Yohn cited problems with the jury charge and verdict form in the trial that ended with the former journalist and Black Panther's first-degree murder conviction in the death of a Philadelphia police officer. The judge denied all of Abu-Jamal's other claims and refused his request for a new trial.

The judge said Abu-Jamal is entitled to a new sentencing hearing within 180 days.
``Should the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania not have conducted a new sentencing hearing ... the Commonwealth shall sentence petitioner to life imprisonment,'' the judge said in his 272-page ruling.

The ruling could be appealed to the U.S. 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals.

Who else wants some?

Who else wants some?

We don't manufacture much of

We don't manufacture much of anything; just war. We don't concern ourselves with education; just war. We don't attend to the 40 million Americans without health coverage; just war. We don't focus on the 30 million American children living in poverty; just war. We don't support the arts; just war. Even though a a multitude of human needs were in existence prior to September 11, and have only increased since then, we continue to direct our attention and our resources into what we do best: war. Just war.
Coming to a mall near you.

originally posted by xowie

Sensi in Hollywood.

Sensi in Hollywood.

originally posted by xowie

Some film-makers in Los Angeles

Some film-makers in Los Angeles see the current relationship between Hollywood and the White House as a mutual back-scratching function, with President Bush seeking to win over the normally pro-Democratic entertainment community while Hollywood wins brownie points which it may be able to employ later in its relationship with the government.
You think? Rousing montage of film clips is just what the president ordered.

originally posted by xowie

December 17, 2001

Cappelletto won 444-338 and

Cappelletto won 444-338 and is the new World Champion. He opened with OVArIAn for 74 points, played a second bingo (PADDLERS) for 74 points and VOZHD (a Stalinist leader) for 50 points in the middle of the game, closed down the board with an 80-point lead late in the game and rode out his lead to victory.
Brian Cappelletoo is the new Scrabble World Champion.

Say it ain't so, the

Say it ain't so, the Sorting Hat sent me to Slytherin!

So, mid January or so

So, mid January or so to start talking about TGOST? Too soon, too late?

His team name and

His team name and helmet are no good, but Darrell Green has been one of my "friends" since 3rd grade. Rumor has it he'll return next year for his twentieth season.

racially stereotypical mascots

Julia Pimsleur made up

Julia Pimsleur made up elaborate lies about her brother Marc, rather than explain that he had dropped out of college, turned his back on his Jewish heritage and moved to a Christian commune in Alaska. When Marc became a fundamentalist Christian, a deep rift formed between him and his liberal Jewish family, especially with his bisexual sister, Julia.

BROTHER BORN AGAIN traces Julia's efforts to understand her brother's conversion and attempt to salvage their relationship. The filmmaker travels from New York City to her brother's religious community, where she and Marc search for common ground and rediscover the meaning of family.
I saw Brother Born Again (also see mediarights.org BBA entry) last Thursday night, and it led to two hours of great conversation with my friends about family, religion and what films should be.

Four thousand one hundred one

Four thousand one hundred one pages on Abbie (Abbott) Hoffman, courtesy the Federal Bureau of Investigation, via newbreed librarian.

That MetaFilter book club people

That MetaFilter book club people were talking about starting now lives at Yahoo! Groups : MeFiBooks.

Interesting reading in Washington Post

Interesting reading in Washington Post Book World on the state of black fiction post-Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man, which is about to celebrate its fiftieth birthday. I definitely need to read that book again, now that I am a little bit smarter.

WP: The Coldest Warrior by

WP: The Coldest Warrior by Ted Gup.

originally posted by xowie

December 16, 2001

Following on from last week's

Following on from last week's Correspondent from the Middle East, tonight's programme was presented by Bonnie Greer returning home and challenging the notion of 'the Great Arrogance'. There's another webcast interview tomorrow (1530 GMT) and questions for Greer are invited in advance.

I just got an email

I just got an email with the following headers:

From: xz9Q.559fMh2334@msn.com

To: <Undisclosed.Recipients>

Subject: Anything other than white is unacceptible 191943

Date: Fri, 30 Nov 2001 15:55:57 -0800

Can you guess what the body said?

December 15, 2001

xrefer: "The web's reference engine

xrefer: "The web's reference engine ... contains encyclopedias, dictionaries, thesauri & books of quotations." Is it any good? (racism quotes, gormless definition)

OJR Features: Will Microads Save

OJR Features: Will Microads Save Online Content? (Part One)

Is this "nothing"? Are they,

Is this "nothing"? Are they, these peoples, "nothing"? Void of their own lives? Only "something" in the context media bloodlust? Only presentable when masked, firing Kalishnakovs in the air and yelling "Allahu Akbar"?

I left the crew planted on the bench, cell phones slopped up to their ears, to go see some more of these nothings.

I picked up some candy from a vender and plopped one in my mouth as a young boy walked past holding his father's hand. He looked to me, and i raised my forehead and bugged out my eyes. He laughed and told his father about the crazy foriegner making goofy faces. As they walked on, he turned his head back to me, and i caught him w/ my patented (though i'm strongly against intellectual properties) monkey face. A few other young boys and girls took notice, too, and i tried to get them all to chuckle at my fooly-faces.

My buddy Trevor is in Palestine at the moment, doing interviews for a nationally syndicated u.s. progressive radio news weekly. Some of his writings so far are here.

And in case you weren't looking, 22 new links today over at the web's best organized collection of rad links. ;-)

originally posted by elihu

December 14, 2001

Saudi clans working with U.S.

Saudi clans working with U.S. oil firms may be tied to bin Laden

Two billionaire Saudi families scrutinized by authorities for possible financial ties to Osama bin Laden's terrorist network continue to engage in major oil deals with leading U.S. corporations.
file under: why-doesn't-this-surprise-me?

We are targeting these groups

We are targeting these groups that do it all the time. If you are at your house one night and you want to get a free copy of some software, that's not what we are talking about.
Well, that's a relief! Although, the ZDNet headline promises "Warez Crackdown's Just Begun"...

What I want to know is whether the government and software industry have considered the extent to which pirated copies of, say, Photoshop and Dreamweaver have driven the explosion of the Internet—and thus, a great portion of the economy—not to mention the expansion of the user base; why would I purchase software for $1000 if I hadn't the faintest notion how to use it? Why would my employer buy me a license if I hadn't a clue what to do with it?

The new Google Catalog Search

The new Google Catalog Search is dope.

In my late teens, I

In my late teens, I saw "Wild Style." I went to a music store and told the man there I wanted two turntables. And he laughed at me, said "You don't need two, you just need one!"
DJ Krush: Putting His Spin on Hip-Hop (washingtonpost.com)

infoshop.org interviews Katie Sierra via

infoshop.org interviews Katie Sierra via David Grenier.

Two Leeds Football Club players

Two Leeds Football Club players have just been convicted of inflicting grievous bodily harm (GBH) on a student, Sarfraz Najeib, though one was convicted of affray. Speaking on BBC Radio, the Leeds manager said, 'We feel great sympathy for the injuries Sarfraz Najeib suffered.' Crappy syntax or Freudian slip?

blogdex social network explorer: randomwalks.com

blogdex social network explorer: randomwalks.com

Forget the Clash of Civilisations,

Forget the Clash of Civilisations, you've got more enemies than you ever thought. Here's one: Britney
'Britney' (above) hates you 'cos you're a web surfing dweeb. Check out the other fangster gangsters at MyCatHatesYou.com.

Marc Herold, a professor at

Marc Herold, a professor at the University of New Hampshire in the Departments of Economics and Women's Studies has compiled a a list of civilian deaths in Afghanistan relying solely on the media count. According to his study, at least 3,700 have been killed.

A few links:

A brief report of his findings.

His site with a Word document and Excel spreadsheet documenting his estimates.

Democracy Now! also links to Herold's study.

Incidentally, this report is apparantly unnewsworthy. A nexis search revealed that only two media outlets picked it up, UPI and something called Periscope Daily Defense News Capsules.

originally posted by zagg

From Follow Me Here: Michael

From Follow Me Here:

Michael Moore's publisher tells him his forthcoming book Stupid White Men and Other Excuses for the State of the Nation will not be distributed, and the print run will be destroyed, because the content is offensive and he is intellectually dishonest for not saying that the President has done a "good job" in recent months.

Library Juice 4:44 "There is

Library Juice 4:44

"There is only one way to read, which is to browse in libraries and bookshops, picking up books that attract you, reading only those, dropping them when they bore you, skipping the parts that drag and never, never reading anything because you feel you ought, or because it is part of a trend or a movement. Remember that the book which bores you when you are twenty or thirty will open doors for you when you are forty or fifty and vice versa. Don't read a book out of its right time for you."

Doris Lessing

Thanksgiving, iftar and Eid in

Thanksgiving, iftar and Eid in Washington.

Shazia Mirza fans everywhere! get

Shazia Mirza fans everywhere! get this. More stage clips to follow, apparently.

December 13, 2001

Hello, Switzerland.

Hello, Switzerland.

originally posted by xowie

Here I am going on

Here I am going on and on about how fat Andy Garcia is, when my friend Valerie sends this incredible e-mail about Julia Roberts:

See, I've got issues with her. I think her roles are just terrible for
women. In Pretty Woman, she's a hooker with a heart of gold who finds Mr.
Right with Mr. Right Amount of Money. Old man gets sex, young woman gets
money, and I'm supposed to get teary-eyed. In My Best Friend's Wedding, she
gets bitchy and manipulative and nasty and she still, ultimately, gets the
coolest guy in the end. In The Mexican, Brad Pitt is about to be killed,
and she's whining about their relationship and about him being
self-centered, thus perpetuating the stereotype of whiny, nagging
girlfriends. In Erin Brockovich, the worst offender of all, she bitches out
any female who comes near her EXCEPT for the victims. And the women she's
surrounded with are ridiculous - fat suburban secretary sterotypes on the
one hand, and on the other hand, when she's in the lawyer's office, a
sexless robot who looks like fucking Lillith from Cheers. We're supposed to
feel all sorry for Erin Brockovich for not being able to feed her kids?
Well you know what, don't dress like a fucking Spice Girl on your job
interview to be a nurse and maybe it wouldn't be such a problem. So what's
the moral of that story? Show your cleavage or be a victim, and everyone
will love you. It's not right, I tell ya.

What do you get when

What do you get when you mix the best book ever written with the most prolific games designer of the last fifteen years? Lord of the Rings by Reiner Knizia. (...)

I can see the game becoming as popular as Settlers of Catan.
The Lord of the Rings board game sounds like a winner.

NYT: The trials (literal and

NYT: The trials (literal and figurative) of Nirvana, L.L.C.

In wartime, people want a

In wartime, people want a cocksure leader, the kind of guy who enjoys sparring with reporters, grins when things appear to go badly and shows occasional glimpses of our national craziness — you never know, he really might just decide to flatten Baghdad. Like Osama bin Laden, Rummy clearly digs the war, and while most of the Bush team walks around wearing permanent expressions of hemorrhoidal despair, he looks like he’s having fun.
Wyatt Earp and the Witchfinder General by John Powers.

originally posted by xowie

Adbusters: America vs. The World

Adbusters: America vs. The World

Assignment: List direct American military intervention on other nations' soil from World War II to the present day. Do not include: indirect military involvement such as arms sales, however significant (e.g. Israel); nuclear threats or nuclear testing (e.g. Marshall Islands); establishment of controversial bases or defense systems (e.g. Western Europe, Saudi Arabia); humanitarian missions that did not involve combat; or the geopolitical impacts of military treaty development, acceptance or rejection. Discuss.

December 12, 2001

A 1976 Louisiana law initially

A 1976 Louisiana law initially allowed for silent meditation. It was amended in 1992 to include the word "prayer" and again in 1999 to remove the word "silent."
Louisiana school prayer law declared unconstitutional.

I'm not having fun preparing for exams, but stuff like that reminds me why I'm in law school...

"Revenge of the Jedi"...

"Revenge of the Jedi"... Episode 6 in the Star Wars saga, has just finished filming, according to some friends I have down in Arizona.

The release date for us humans that want to see it is still the summer of 1983. I guess it takes that long to score all the music, do all the film-editing, prepare all the promo material, and all that junk.

I wish Lucas & Co. would get the thing going a little faster. I can't really imagine waiting until 1997 to see all nine parts of the Star Wars series.
The Register unearths 20 years of memorable posts from Google's archive.

wow. An agreement was reached


An agreement was reached today between plaintiffs in four lawsuits against Pacifica and the foundation's board of directors, whereby official control of the network will return to community radio advocates. The agreement calls for an interim board, controlled by the current minority, to serve for fifteen months while new, democratic structures are implemented for an elected national Pacifica board.

It's been a long road. One of -- if not the -- most anti-democratic institutions in the whole spectrum of current progressive movements and media has, it appears, fallen. Read all about the imminent democratization of pacifica.

originally posted by elihu

Questions And Answers About The

Questions And Answers About The War.

Hello, mycroft.pica.army.mil!

Hello, mycroft.pica.army.mil!

On December 12, shortly after

On December 12, shortly after midday, and struggling through strong wind and static, he heard the three clicks of the letter S in Morse Code that marked the birth of the radio.

"The receiver on the table before me was very crude," Marconi later said. "No valves, no amplifiers, not even a crystal. I was at last on the point of putting the correctness of all my beliefs to the test."

It's radio's one hundredth birthday. So much potential, so thoroughly wasted. Oh, but we should be more optimistic, if at all possible. Here's to the pirates, rebels, and innovators who are with us in our beds, cars and showers at all hours, still fighting to show that radio can do more than spew ads and lousy music.

Seattle Metaphysical Library

Seattle Metaphysical Library

I agree with dr

I agree with dr here - motherfuckers who didn't check up on me the week after Sep. 11 get NO LOVE.

Get Your War On, Page 6.

TidBITS Mac newsletter on Digital

TidBITS Mac newsletter on Digital Photo Goodies.

Biographical information at arabworldbooks on

Biographical information at arabworldbooks on Egyptian and Arab authors on the web.

December 11, 2001

Infographic: clearing out the caves

Infographic: clearing out the caves (CNN).

TGOTS vocab:dhobi — n. Indian

TGOTS vocab:

    dhobin. Indian washerman or woman.

    veshyan. Prostitute.

Add more definitions as needed.

White-Out: The Outing of Whiteness

White-Out: The Outing of Whiteness - The experimental movie is an intriguing mix of extensive one-on-one interviews with whites and Blacks from Africa and the U.S., compelling scenery, and an innovative and unflinching historical perspective. Ms. Bradford has produced an incisive examination of how whites automatically assume their race and culture to be "normal", all others "abnormal" to varying degrees, and how the absence of whites' examination of their own identity helps keep racism locked into place. She says, "Stepping out of our conditioning as whites and taking an honest look at our whiteness is one of the most important things we can do to end racism."

Although that description suggests that this movie uses Black people to represent all "Others" -- excluding Asians, Latinos, and native peoples, as is too often the case when race is discussed -- it still sounds like it could be useful for introducing a white audience to their own racism. I'd love to see it.

Walker, 20, published several

Walker, 20, published several dozen messages between 1995 and 1998 on Usenet discussion groups, which are archived at http://groups.google.com. He used several accounts, including his mother's. His main handle was "doodoo@hooked.net"
New York's worst newspaper explores John Walker's usenet postings.

My home team will win

My home team will win many of its competitions!

From "An Exchange on White

From "An Exchange on White Guilt" (part of Gregory Jay's Whiteness Studies site):

Antiracism is not about guilt or blame. You don't have to be guilty or blameful to receive privileged treatment at the bank, at the store, in the courts, in legislative policy, etc. just because you are "white." This is not about individuals; this is about structures of privilege.

For two centuries laws and customs in the United States gave "white" people (a word that appeared in countless legal decisions and legislative acts) an unfair advantage over others. "Hard working immigrants" of European descent faced a hard lot, but their relative lot was made easier by the fact that they did not have to compete on a level playing field with nonwhites. The job market and access to education were thus skewed in their favor, just as men did not have to face much competition since women were denied the right to compete for most jobs or for admission to the best schools and colleges.

Again, these are structures of privilege, and they benefit people no matter whether those individuals want this to be the case or not. It doesn't matter how fair and antiracist you may be, you are not the one they follow in the department store, but you are the one that gets her loan approved at the bank. It's this structure and legacy of white privilege that's appalling.

I welcome any conscious effort by European Americans to celebrate their heritage as long as this includes loudly denouncing white supremacy and the myth of the existence of "white" people.

In sum, with this decision,

In sum, with this decision, she broke the commercial press's legal monopoly on First Amendment protection, and extended that protection to an online periodical. This is a huge precedent. It applies to Indymedia. It applies to the website of Washington-based independent journalist Jeremy Bigwood, he wrote to me yesterday, because he's been reporting on Bolivia and the Andean drug war, too. It applies to any independent online journalist or website who makes a fair and responsible attempt to publish the facts and opinions on important public issues.
Like weblogs, I guess. Indymedia Q & A with NarcoNews' Al Giordano.

originally posted by xowie

Enron is Whitewater in spades.

Enron is Whitewater in spades. Admiral Sir Michael Boyce, senior UK military duffer, warns against attacking Iraq. By the by, I hope his wife isn't called Joyce.

I like the idea that

I like the idea that no artist is involved, so you have to judge them by your own eye. You can't say it's a van Gogh, and have everyone say, `Ooooh, van Gogh.' All that matters is the rock. Which means everyone looking at it has to become the artist.
At home with Ian Falconer, creator of Olivia the pig.

Police believe Billy killed his

Police believe Billy killed his father the day before the body was found. Barely 24 hours after the slaying, Billy was necking with Autumn Basil at a Joe Walsh concert in nearby Cuyahoga Falls, pals told police.
Autumn Basil? Just one of the many odd details in the story of William Bond.

Google has brought a huge

Google has brought a huge usenet archive online, dating back to 1981 -- check out the original rec.mag, alt.zines, and alt.etext Kyosaku announcement from November seven, 1994! (Kyosaku?)

December 10, 2001

Portland's worst newspaper hosts Brian

Portland's worst newspaper hosts Brian Libby's article and discussion about non-landmark landmarks.

Links to free culture (Marcel

Links to free culture (Marcel Mauss, the Free Store, the Situationists, the Internet gift economy, GNU, net.art, mail art, free music, free publishing, etc.) courtesy the Free Words project, via jessamyn.

It seems fiction no longer

It seems fiction no longer has a place in women's mags.

News flash: five times more

News flash: five times more dogs in New Yorker cartoons. (Try this Google search and see just how pervasive this cartoon has become.)

When the halls of T.C.

When the halls of T.C. Williams High School filled with talk of bombs and revenge after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, Bradley Cook and her friends from the Amnesty International Club put up posters in the stairwells that read: "War Will Only Kill More."

The posters were torn down within hours. Sometimes by teachers. Sometimes by other students. They were put up a second time. And torn down again.

Another student at the school who recently wrote a pro-peace essay critical of U.S. foreign policy was asked to do another paper on a less "offensive" topic.

Pro-peace high-schoolers are facing alarming consequences for their words and deeds, reports the Washington Post.

Wall texts teach that looking

Wall texts teach that looking at art is about "getting it," the way you "get" the punch line to a joke or the answer to a riddle, rather than about struggling to find some useful handle on the fundamentally un-gettable. One reason that people may spend less time looking when there's a wall text present is that, after their little read, they feel less need to linger on the art itself: After all, it doesn't take long to decipher a work of art -- when all it is supposed to do is illustrate the kind of point that fits onto a 3-by-5 card.
The Washington Post's Blake Gopnik notes that most visitors to art museums spend more time reading wall text than looking at the actual art. He's not happy about it. He also finds that the maximum time visitors spend looking at a work of art is eight seconds. Next time I visit a museum I'll have to time myself, but I really hope I'm not as guilty of neglect.

"America doen't seem to believe

"America doen't seem to believe in history. I'll give you three examples...When Bush was elected he did not know who the President of Pakistan was. Then he called Musharraf a dictator. And then, Musharraf is now America's sweetheart."
Last night's Letter to America on the BBC's Correspondent programme featured Rana Khabbani returning to the Middle East, to hear views on the US. Scroll down for the Museum of Arrogance, in the building which used to house the US embassy in Tehran.

The Utterly Surreal Test -

The Utterly Surreal Test - Result

I am a Collection of Elvis Impersonators.

I refine elastic nightmares with habitable abstract umbrellas. My perspective oranges enter forgotten densities of responsible soap. Evil lids of atomic paper eat my incomplete golf balls.

Who spices folded robots? The Utterly Surreal Test

The people who were assaulted

The people who were assaulted were the Afghans, the scars inflicted by us — by B-52s, not by them. And I'll say it again. If I was an Afghan refugee in Kila Abdullah, I would have done just what they did. I would have attacked Robert Fisk. Or any other Westerner I could find.
Robert Fisk is in a stable condition.

December 9, 2001

Although the world's best Chinese

Although the world's best Chinese food is served in Monterey Park, I am not brave enough to eat here. (Vegans read at own risk.)

originally posted by xowie

The most unusual (and visible)

The most unusual (and visible) aspect of betel chewing is its effect on the salivary glands. You don't just salivate, you pour; and the saliva emerges from your mouth tinted a deep brick red. (...)

Perverse as it may sound, betel-drooling is quite pleasurable indeed. There is an almost orgasmic satisfaction to be found in the experience of saliva-ducts open to full throttle. Delicious above all is the aftermath: when the chew is finished, your mouth is left astonishingly fresh and sweet. You feel uniquely cleansed, drained, and purified.

Betel nut, a.k.a. pan masala -- anybody tried this stuff?

On the one hand, I

On the one hand, I would have liked to have gone to DC's "2nd annual" Zine Fair,"a celebration of diy publishing and radical thought" -- which sounds a lot like the old indy rock yard sale, this time with an anarchist bent. I suppose it was a nice way for the city to celebrate my son's first birthday, in any case.

December 8, 2001

Hey George! Ricochet is going

Hey George! Ricochet is going to be back up. Will I regret my cable modem?

In this fight for our

In this fight for our cherished freedoms, those cherished freedoms should definitely be the first thing to go. Sieg heil, y'all.
Molly Ivins thinks Ashcroft's gone nuts.
Don't count me among those who quake that Mr. Ashcroft is shredding the Constitution. He does respect some rights, after all, like that of illegal immigrants and terrorists to buy guns in the U.S. without fear of government intrusion. And he just doesn't seem clever enough to undo the Bill of Rights, even with the president's backing. You have to have more command of the law than he does to subvert it.
Frank Rich, Confessions of a Traitor.

originally posted by xowie

December 7, 2001

"I think it's very important

"I think it's very important for people to understand that when I walk through the prison walls, I am Chaplain Jamyi Witch, interfaith and non-denominational chaplain."
Wiccan is new state prison chaplain.

originally posted by xowie

When they moved from a

When they moved from a 65% cool computer ad format to an 89% luxury crap ad format, I let my subscription lapse. This means I have to wait a few extra weeks to read things like Wired's October The Fellowship of the Ring cover story online.

Huge bonuses were paid to

Huge bonuses were paid to Enron insiders two days before the bankruptcy filing. Also, a great response to Bill Lockyer's tasteless comment about Ken Lay.

originally posted by xowie

December 6, 2001

Commenting in adam's nov 30

Commenting in adam's nov 30 post below, Oliver raises a question about why "white racism" and not just "racism"? Good question Oliver.

People, let's get clear: there is no other kind.

The People's Institute for Survival and Beyond and People's Institute West see racism as "race prejudice plus power." In other words, you can be prejudiced without power but racism entails the cultural power to do something about it.

In the materials for the challenging white supremacy workshops, Sharon Martinas provides a couple of really good definitions:

"White supremacy is an historically based, institutionally perpetuated system of exploitation and oppression of continents, nations, and peoples of color by white peoples and nations of the European continent, for the purpose of maintaining and defending a system of wealth, power, and privilege."

REVERSE RACISM: A term created and used by white people to deny their white privilege. Those in denial use the term reverse racism to refer to hostile behavior by people of color toward whites, and to affirmative action policies which allegedly give ‘preferential treatment’ to people of color over whites. In the U.S., there is no such thing as "reverse racism."

and here's a few more good links:

originally posted by elihu

IHT.com: Villagers Dying Under U.S.

IHT.com: Villagers Dying Under U.S. Bombs, Anti-Taliban Forces Say

From Ethel:

What really caused the prisoners to revolt, and what really killed them? Also: It takes money, unimaginable power, and greed unchecked by moral or ethical considerations to make money, as the saying goes. (Featuring your favorite group and mine, the Carlyle Group.)

But it is in everyday

But it is in everyday social conversation where the Web is having the greatest impact. Fact-checking's effect on talking is like a loud thud on the floor, a real conversation stopper, linguists say.

Conversations have changed over the years. On the streets of 18th-century Paris, people would gather and gossip, pooling their knowledge to find out what was happening in their community. Exchanging information was necessary to make the society run more efficiently, but modern conversation is much different.

Racing to the Web for settling arguments and digging up data mid-conversation has both plusses and minuses.

Portland's worst newspaper, the Willamette

Portland's worst newspaper, the Willamette Week, has a summary and update on the PPD v. Ashcroft battle over racial profiling.

If a crocodile eats you

If a crocodile eats you for breakfast, here are two consoling thoughts. First, your jewelry may survive -- the hungry reptile could vomit back your rings, necklace and watch. Secondly, if it does cough up your valuables, we now know exactly how it will do so.
When crocodiles vomit.

Where writers write, from the

Where writers write, from the Christian Science Monitor. Via MetaFilter.

John Ashcroft has this to

John Ashcroft has this to say to his critics:

"To those who pit Americans against immigrants, citizens against non-citizens, to those who scare peace-loving people with phantoms of lost liberty, my message is this: Your tactics only aid terrorists for they erode our national unity and diminish our resolve," Ashcroft told the Senate Judiciary Committee. "They give ammunition to America's enemies and pause to America's friends. They encourage people of good will to remain silent in the face of evil. "

To which I reply, "Look in the mirror, asshole."

Font of the Week? Font

Font of the Week? Font of a lifetime! Learn about Albertus, create your own sample, and download a truetype version for Windows.

Sen. Thurmond Celebrates 99th Birthday

Sen. Thurmond Celebrates 99th Birthday (yahoo/news) looking healthier than ever!

Ever northward moves her hand,

Ever northward moves her hand, while she smiles languorously at my right ear. And when she reaches the north pole, I think in wonder and terror....she will surely want to pitch her tent

Details of this year's Bad Sex literary prize. I like the idea of contests, especially ones where the contestants don't know they're participating until they get nominated for something or other. Can we hold contests and give out fabulous prizes on rW?

December 5, 2001

Best TV show site, ever?

Best TV show site, ever? This incredible homage to the prisoner is both wonderful and extremely frightening.

via mefi

Q: Given the trend just

Q: Given the trend just after the attacks to revise popular culture and pull images of the World Trade Center or terrorism out of any entertainment, were you concerned about the content?

FM: [Laughs.] Well, it's on the press.

Frank Miller interview.

originally posted by xowie

Note: Yel ka ye (Pas

Note: Yel ka ye (Pas de problème in French; "No problem" in English) was the first and most useful phrase I ever learned in Mooré. The next most useful was Fo baaba yalanna, or "Who's your daddy?"
A primer for second-language learners.

originally posted by Greer

"A joint initiative of six

"A joint initiative of six organizations with exceptional expertise in computer and Internet training in the [global] South," itrain online is a multi-lingual directory of training materials and tutorials on all aspects of computer, network, and internet technologies.

Patriotic hiatus for just one

Patriotic hiatus for just one second: Kim Howells make me proud to be Welsh.

Danza (jish, boingboing, 0sil8) hasn't

Danza (jish, boingboing, 0sil8) hasn't hit Daypop yet. This ought to be interesting.

AIDS cases in US Prisons

AIDS cases in US Prisons are being diagnosed at 5 times the rate of the rest of the population. Prisoners with AIDS face discrimination, abuse and are denied access to health care and medication, on top of all the other abuses prisoners in the US face every day.

From HIV+ Magazine:

"African-American women, incarcerated faster than any other group, also have the highest HIV infection rate among women, both in and out of prison. Women make up a greater percentage of the HIV-positive prison population than men do, an overlooked issue. Yet prisons continue to be built at an alarming rate, although not fast enough to alleviate the miserable conditions of prison overcrowding. In California all federal prisons operate at more than 200 percent capacity."

Thanks California Prison Focus and Act UP NY for links and info.

via Metafilter's excellent Dec. 1 coverage.

Finally, there's language. Experts

Finally, there's language. Experts in the capitalist world tend to mystify their work. Whether it’s "move to demur," "updating the HTML," or "within the confines of this narrative," professionals have a vested interest in making their work sound as obscure and difficult as possible. Professionals in our society own the little part of the world they have "expertise" over. They make decisions that affect everyone, and get more control and authority as time goes on.

Sound familiar? All these factors - hoarding information, exclusive contacts, mystifying language - get even worse during a crisis. In the middle of an action it's easy to say, "There's no time to teach anyone new, men or women, how to work the radios." First, that's usually a group of men speaking. Second, that's why you have start before the action. If the problem is just a few big egos and a lot of people's complicity, then you can delegate immediately. If there's more at work, you have to set up a structure so folks outside the de facto leadership meaningfully take on projects. That structure can include documenting steps and information, helping new people develop working relationships with other organizers, using everyday language instead of bullshit acronyms, and so on. But without a process it's much more difficult to pass on that responsibility.

West Springfield HS and Oberlin alum Dan Spalding has posted an excellent open letter to activist men entitled "Shut the Fuck Up." If I had read (and understood) this when I was 18, things at Oberlin would have been much more happy and productive.

Damn, it's those pesky Carlyle

Damn, it's those pesky Carlyle Group kids again.

December 4, 2001

How, I asked him one

How, I asked him one night over dinner in London, was he planning to educate them? He looked down into his plate of pasta and played with his fork. "I will raise them as Saudi women. I won't make the mistake some people make, of bringing them up half here and half there, so that they don't know who they are," he said.

"But what if one of them is a gifted physicist or mathematician?" I asked. "What if she needs to go abroad to study?" I thought he would say, "Well, in that case, of course, she'll study at Harvard, or Princeton, or Cambridge." But he didn't say that at all.

Instead, he sighed. It was a long, deep sigh that reminded me of his uncle when I'd asked him about women driving.

Nine Parts of Desire, Geraldine Brooks. Doubleday Publishing, Inc., 1995

Reviewed by Geoff Lumetta, Washington Report On Middle East Affairs, April 1996, pg. 70
"It becomes insufficient to look at Islam on paper, or Islam in history, and dwell on the unarguable improvements it brought to women's lives in the seventh century," Brooks writes. "Today, the much more urgent and relevant task is to examine the way the faith has proved such fertile ground for almost every anti-woman custom it encountered in its great march out of Arabia." She maintains that Islam adopted the royal Persian custom of veils, accepted gender mutilation from Egypt, "and when it found societies in which women had never had a voice in public affairs, its own traditions of lively women's participation withered."

Reviewed by CyberMuslima

Ms. Brooks is obsessed with proving that Islam is repressive by comparing it to the secular traditions of the United States and other Western countries. Whatever rights women in the US have, then all women must have. Whatever clothes or behavior we take on here, must be taken on by all other women. It never even crosses her mind that for one thing, these ideas are racist and cultural imperialism at its finest. Who is to say that what goes on in the US is right for everyone? Who is to say it is right at all? And who are American feminists to export their interpretation of the state of human relations to other countries without even examining the traditions of women within other cultures and religions? What arrogance to assume that we know better than everyone else! She seems to think that belly dancing in Egypt is the most liberating thing a woman can do, a celebration of what a woman's body does: " the natural movements of childbirth and sex." Why extol belly dancing as the most valuable cultural asset to come from a Muslim country? Because it keeps in step with the American ideal that if it feels good, do it.

originally posted by Greer

From Follow Me Here:From this

From Follow Me Here:

From this weblog community vantage point, the outrage about the Dictatorship's mad, ongoing powergrab under Ashcroft's influence seems so palpable, but where's the organized opposition behind the spleen? It may turn out to be one of the greatest, most enduring humiliations in American history -- certainly on a par with McCarthyism, if that phrase still makes anyone blush -- that reasonable Americans are allowing this to happen with no more than ineffectual spluttering like this. Is it time to write your Congressional representatives? Ha! Time to march on Washington? blockade the Justice Dept? Do the words mass protest, or nonviolent civil disobedience, resonate with anyone anymore?
Eliot believes that those who oppose Ashcroft must get organized.

New Jersey Teachers Jailed for

New Jersey Teachers Jailed for Continuing to Strike.

originally posted by zagg

The Weblog Review has given

The Weblog Review has given us a once-over and compared us favorably to MetaFilter, which is pretty cool, though not as cool as it would have been back when... Nevermind. I'm a little surprised that a weblogger reviewing weblogs isn't familiar with the convention of hooking a perma-link to each post's date/time info, but I have chosen to suppress the link color and hide the underline, so the point is taken that I will miss out on some direct links as a result. I suppose I could also put a link to the archives higher up, with those nav links at the top of the sidebar. In any case our official rating is a 4 and our reader rating is a 2.75, so you know what to do (scratch your butt, close this window, and go get something to eat)!

There may not be much

There may not be much to Baileys Crossroads in Northern Virginia, which is very near my home in Arlington. But it does have its own scribe: Perri Pagonis, author of Blood and Popcorn. This would make a great holiday gift for your favorite rW books editor.

Last night I discovered that

Last night I discovered that the Baileys Crossroads area of Northern Virginia (my home turf) has its own scribe: Perri Pagonis, author of Blood and Popcorn. This would make an excellent holiday gift for your favorite rW books editor.

Ever seen and wondered

Ever seen and wondered about one of these?

Bill O'Neill is on top of it. Well, actually, he can't wholly explain the phenomenon, but at least knows the scope of it. I've seen several in D.C. and always wondered what the heck they were. (Note that "Rick Karr" spotted one at Mass. Ave. and 6th in D.C. -- it's probably this Rick Karr, since NPR's headquarters are just half a block from that intersection.) (c/o the MeFi thread about Found.)

Monkeyfist.com unveils a new look

Monkeyfist.com unveils a new look (I was going to make some joke involving gloves but what's the use) which does a great job showcasing some of the very best original content on the Web. My favorite recent piece goes a little like this:

I am homophobic.

I am homophobic (literally, "afraid of non-heterosexuals") to the extent that I accept the exclusive validity of "traditional" notions of gender, of masculinity or femininity. I assume, as most people do, that everyone around me is heterosexual, unless they make it clear that they aren't. By making this assumption, I expect a uniform range of behaviors from everyone I encounter. This expectation has everything to do with why life is extremely difficult for those who are homosexual and for those who's sexual identity lies somewhere in between. Because it takes a considerable amount of work to break out of these expectations, only a very small number of people who feel overwhelmingly that they are homosexual, and simply cannot live normally otherwise, actually "come out of the closet." The same closet that's built and maintained by me and by everyone else who assumes and expects heterosexuality of everyone.

Most people of color (and

Most people of color (and therefore most of the world) are lactose intolerant. White poison from Colorlines and The Food Pyramid Scheme are two interesting articles about racism and the dairy industry. Additionally, NoMilk and NotMilk are informative sites about the untold horrors of milk consumption. It's time to go vegan again!

originally posted by beXn



"How Gyroscopes Work" from Howstuffworks.com,

"How Gyroscopes Work" from Howstuffworks.com, courtesy The Segway Blog (see flux).

It reminds me of what

It reminds me of what the French existentialist professor used to say. "Haw," he would say. "It is a cosmic fart."
More on the Segway from the Washington Post.

Diary of the first Segway

Diary of the first Segway owner. (c/o boing boing)

originally posted by xowie

Darrell, O.J. - let's roll!

Darrell, O.J. - let's roll!

originally posted by xowie

Know your rights. (via Emil

Know your rights. (via Emil Guillermo.)

originally posted by xowie

December 3, 2001

Yahoo! News Full Coverage-Literary News

Yahoo! News Full Coverage-Literary News

Q: I feel an overwhelming

Q: I feel an overwhelming need to kill this man in the cave, but the location of the cave is unknown to me, and so it's impossible to find him. He's been allowed to stay in the cave, however, by the fanatical rulers of the country where the cave is, Afghanistan, so I feel an overwhelming need to kill those rulers. As they've moved from place to place, though, I haven't found them, but I've succeeded in finding and killing many young soldiers who guarded them and shepherds who lived near them. Nonetheless, I do not feel any of the expected "closure," and in fact I'm becoming increasingly depressed and am obsessed with nameless fears. Can you help me?
A: Your real problem is simply the way that millions and millions of people around the world feel about you. Who are these people? They share the world with you -- one single world, which works as a unified mechanism. These people are the ones for whom the mechanism's current way of working -- call it the status quo -- offers a life of anguish and servitude. They're well aware that this status quo, which for them is a prison, is for you (or for the privileged among you), on the contrary, so close to a paradise that you will never allow their life to change. These millions of people are in many cases uneducated--to you they seem unsophisticated--and yet they still somehow know that you have played an enormous role in keeping this status quo in place.
Wallace Shawn, The Foreign Policy Therapist.

The incredible soyajoy soy milk

The incredible soyajoy soy milk maker is on sale for $125. (It helps you make tofu too.) Imagine soyajoy in homes instead of microwaves and air conditioners, and fresh tofu products and soymilk on our dinner tables instead of meat and dairy. Now THERE'S an invention that would change the world.

here it is. the invention

here it is. the invention known alternately as 'it' and 'ginger'. called the segway. acceleration through leaning.

originally posted by oldwabbles

Guy from DC injured while

Guy from DC injured while fighting for the Taliban. Shame that once he'd grown the beard, he didn't join the Beaver County Militia.

Times Cries Eke! Buries Al

Times Cries Eke! Buries Al Gore by Gore Vidal.

originally posted by xowie

Ten Do's and Don'ts to

Ten Do's and Don'ts to Raising Healthy Multiracial/Multiethnic Children:

Children are concrete learners - they learn about themselves and the world through real experiences, not words and lectures. In a society so polarized by race and ethnicity, our children must have lots of direct contact with both sides of their family. The easiest way for this to occur is through experiences with both parents.

When two adults cross the racial divide to have a child, they can never go back. Your child represents an in-your-face challenge to racism and the belief of every racial, ethnic and national group that ingroup marriage is somehow normal and better. (...)

It's difficult for a child to develop prejudicial beliefs or inaccurate information about one side of their heritage if they have positive contacts with both sides all the time. Its easy to develop prejudices when the child is around people from only one of his/her backgrounds. (...)

When you hold and talk to your infant, talk about her pretty skin, beautiful eyes, and curly hair. Tell her how much she looks like her father and mother. Sing songs about a beautiful, brown, curly headed baby. Read books about multiracial children, families of the world, and all aspects of her heritage. Give her mirrors to see herself; when you talk to others affirm her positive multiracial identity. (...)

Don't teach children that color does not matter. It does! - in this country, and most countries in the world. And color matters not only in the greater society, but within every single racial and ethnic group (Blacks, Hispanics, Natives Americans and Asians). People's initial reactions to other people are based on physical characteristics - what that person looks like (skin color, hair color and texture, facial features).

Children respond to people who care about them - regardless of their background. It certainly helps if these adults know about multiracial children and how to support their healthy identity development.

Do not entrust your child to adults who do not respect their need for a full identity. And, do not assume minority adults support multiracial identity; many do not.

I constantly hear from young biracial and multiracial adults who do not feel good about themselves, because their parents did not support their mixed identity. The rest of the world does not ignore it!

Children need classmates, neighbors, playmates, etc, who represent both racial groups (or more). If this does not occur, children develop an unrealistic - and overly romantic - view of the part of their heritage that is missing, and then want to discover 'being black', 'being Native American', 'being Hispanic', etc. The problem is they truly don't know what it means to be one of these minorities, so they become attracted to the stereotypes of the group - music, behaviors, clothes, language, etc. Do not raise a child in a single-race environment - especially if its white.

Our children are minorities, have direct personal connections with the dominant group, and are something new - what many are calling third culture children.

Ninety five percent of our children's experiences - good and bad - have nothing to do with race and ethnicity. Our children progress through the same developmental stages, learn the same school-related tasks, and have all the same challenges as single-race children.

They just have one more experience: being multiracial or multiethnic.

December 2, 2001

Mr. Kamen plans to demonstrate

Mr. Kamen plans to demonstrate today a two-wheeled battery-powered device designed for a single standing rider. Its chief novelty lies in the uncanny effect, produced by a finely tuned gyroscopic balancing mechanism, of intuiting where its rider wants to go -- and going there.
George calls it a "'Gwe lo rider" and I think they should team with Apple for a special iPod edition. What is it? A.k.a. "Ginger," now known as Dean Kamen's Segway, it's IT.

Curious minds want a report,

Curious minds want a report, darlin clem -- how did your stab at NaNoWriMo go?

Has a president of the

Has a president of the United States and a single corporation ever been locked in a tighter embrace than Bush and Enron?

Great vegetarian shoe sites recommended

Great vegetarian shoe sites recommended by Bruce.






originally posted by Greer

"It is Bobby Fischer without

"It is Bobby Fischer without a shadow of a doubt."

originally posted by xowie

CD buyers beware -- record

CD buyers beware -- record companies are distributing discs which are broken in a number of ways: they won't play on many CD players including most computers and DVD players and they won't allow songs to be converted to mp3 format. As usual, if you buy one from a store, you're stuck with it (exchanges only, no returns). So bookmark Fat Chuck's corrupt CDs list and print it out before you go shopping. Considering that the only music worth listening to since 1991's Nevermind has come out first on vinyl, this shouldn't really be a problem.

December 1, 2001

Jamaica Kincaid, a phenomenal writer

Jamaica Kincaid, a phenomenal writer and possibly my all-time favorite author, knows what to do with words. Read the first chapter of My Brother, a memoir about her youngest brother living and dying with AIDS, here.

Rumors of Zadie Smith going

Rumors of Zadie Smith going to Harvard have been spreading. Please confirm.

"In India, there are three

"In India, there are three to four people sharing beds in hospitals, and two or three more on the floor, waiting for their shift. This is not an old epidemic. It is just starting. In 20 years, we could be talking about a billion cases of AIDS.''
AIDS at 20: The Epidemic is Just Starting.

originally posted by xowie

David Furnish, Johnny Bergius and

David Furnish, Johnny Bergius and Janet Street-Porter are planning to summit Kilimanjaro today to benefit The Elton John AIDS Foundation.

originally posted by xowie

World AIDS stats. The numbers

World AIDS stats. The numbers are staggering.

MetaFilter will be a definitive

MetaFilter will be a definitive spot today. If you miss what it was or wonder what it could be, stop by. Which other weblogs are doing a good job with today's Link and Think observance of World AIDS Day? Yours?

"Almost 10,000 people will die

"Almost 10,000 people will die today from AIDS," says Eric Sawyer, founding member of ACT UP NY. (AIDs Coalition to Unleash Power is "a diverse, non-partisan group of individuals united in anger and committed to direct action to end the AIDS crisis.")