Friday, December 30, 2005

Dark Dubya

Thursday, December 29, 2005

"The Nightingale" on PBS tonight at 8pm

This amazing performance is on as I type. Mesmerizing.
The music is by Stravinsky, and the staging is reminescent of the works of Robert Wilson and Twyla Tharp. Beyond the beyond.


BUT THEN..."Shallow Hal" is also on concurrently...on FOX. Also a very good pick. was filmed right here in Charlotte...AND it features friend of a friend Gwyneth her skivvies.

A splendid time is guaranteed for all...

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Find the Liberal

One of these hominids is a Liberal. Can you find him?

Iddybud Journal

art by anonyMoses

When will conservatives learn their role?

There is no need to yell and scream. No need to be strident and shrill. What is needed is that conservatives learn their proper role.

Now by conservative, I mean people who are not creative, but who are, in the main, reactionary.
In America, it has long been the case that the creative class tended toward liberality, since that is, in large part, what enables them to be creative. Creativity is a generative and generous act.

But many of those who are not creative make the mistake of becoming, or being, reactive, as if reactivity balanced creativity. But this is not the proper order. The proper thing for the non-creatives to do is to be receptive, not reactive. Creativity is the yang, receptivity is the yin.

All of life is infused with both characteristics. No one is completely one way or the other. There are simply aptitudes and orientations.

America is prevented from evolving naturally by this miscalculation. Instead of great ideas being nurtured and developed by those who would be receptive, instead they are reacted against, shot down, and the balloon bursts...if it is ever given wind in the first place.

The second mistake of the reactives is that reaction is, to the extent that it is mechanical, the antonym of consciousness. As DH Lawrence once wrote: "Death is not evil. Evil is mechanical."
And so it is with mechanical humanity -- if the oxymoron hasn't already smacked you on the face or fundament. And mechanicality is a state against which one must ever struggle, as modernity itself seems to lull one into its hypnotic laze. (Here laze is meant to indicate the gestalt of laziness...and to not neologize might be a glaring example of said laze.)

Allied with this unconscious, mechanical reactionariness are the onion layers of delusion (Maya) caused by the buffers from reality caked on with each ego-centered supposition, as if every knucklehead were indeed the actual center of the universe.

Creatives, for their part, need to understand that a gift is a gift, and that gifts can be taken away if not stewarded with proper care. Midwiving reactives into receptives may be a role you have to take up. Alas, friends are better than foe. Make it all worthwhile.

Americans are growing weary of the ululation, the pounding fists, the adolescent bravado. Fix the most basic structures, and the rest will become much easier to attend.

These things and more have been uttered under the influence of Anonymoses, uncle of all blogs, and may not be taken as medicine. If conditions persist, consult your physicist.

Mr. Wondrous welcomes you to Anonymoses

this is an audio post - click to play

BULLETIN: Bush Elected President of Iraq

Complete coverage at Onion News Services.
(hattip to Rah Bourbon of the European Bourbons)

"Growth is Good" by J. "Bradfold" Delong

An economist's take on the moral consequences of material progress

[Note the prominent typo in his name.] :)

Blogger Brad DeLong, Harvard ’82, Ph.D. ’87, is professor of economics at the University of California at Berkeley, and is at work on “The Economic History of the Twentieth Century: Slouching towards Utopia?”

We have been nominated for Best Writing/Koufax Awards

Along with these other good folks:
Best Writing
Lance Mannion - Creek Running North - Nancy Nall - Neil Shakespeare - Michael Berube Online - Anonymoses - Rana - Echidne - Amanda Marcotte - Shakespeare's Sister - Stirling Newberry - Jeffrey Feldman - Matthew Nisbett - Paul Rosenberg

Thanks to Bora at Science and Politics for the nomination. Personally, I think he is the better writer. And color-coordinated!

Two Minute Television

Two Minute Television is the brainchild of Levi Shapiro. Some great clips! Check it out!

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

The Disnification of Harvard Square

In its heyday, the Brattle offered Boston film buffs the best movie education in town. For many, it is still hard to recall scenes from Francois Truffaut's "400 Blows" or Jean-Luc Godard's "Breathless" or Humphrey Bogart's farewell to Ingrid Bergman in "Casablanca" without thinking of the Brattle.

The Brattle Film Foundation, the nonprofit that has operated the theater since 2001, has launched a campaign to save the place by raising $400,000 before its lease runs out in February.

The last performance I saw at the Brattle was Spalding Gray performing Swimming to Cambodia. May the theater not suffer a similar fate...

Literary Monkeyshine

More Endowed

Yankee Pot Roast: Letter from the Editors Archives

Monday, December 26, 2005

Vid-blog Emmy awards

href=""> Vid-blog Emmy awards
Video blogs and podcasts are eligible for Emmy awards. The LA Times reports: "The New York-based National Academy of Television Arts & creating an award for Outstanding Achievement in Content for Non-Traditional Delivery Platforms ? and the first one will be handed out at the 33rd Annual Daytime Emmy Awards on April 28, airing on ABC."

Details on applications and rules at vlogLab.

via Ed Cone

Pratie Place: Tar Heel Tavern #44

Tarheel Tavern is open at Pratie Place. It's a good one!

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Memories of my first Holiday

Holiday doesn't sound right, but Christmas doesn't sound right either. The main thing I remember about my first Christmas was that my mother's mother had died. And people were crying all over the place. I have since learned why.

When I first saw the commotion, the sadness, I was hanging out on the porch with my brother and sister, while my aunt, a Parisian woman with good looks and a funny way of talking, bathed her latest after her latest created quite a mess, which was preternaturally green and filled with discordant odors already strange to my five year old nose.

A commotion commenced with its epicenter being the front door, wherein my dear grandfather was carried into the house and up the stairs to his bedroom. He looked a broken man. He, a strong, solid man who worked his farm and raised nearly a dozen children, and who never showed weakness, was now virtually drained of Life, and seemed dependent upon the human props, crutches, that animated him toward that feather-filled bed where he was to spend his Christmas without the person who had animated him for longer, perhaps, than he was willing to let go.

Some grown-ups explained to us that our grandmother had died, of sugar diabetes. Grandpa needed some rest. You can talk tomorrow.

And tomorrow did come, after what might have been a very long night for dear Elias. And little by little, he resurrected himself, and lived more than twenty years, until the ripe old age of 98.

During this season, I hope people will think about what it is to resurrect, and why it is important to allow others to resurrect. Surely it is not as simple as the evolutionists believe in it, while non-evolutions do not. Maybe resurrection IS evolution, of a sort. In any case, both are aspects of change, which is, perhaps, the only real absolute. Other than vodka of course.

When things are great, you may wish that things never change. But when things are not so good, as in the case of my grandfather, and everyone eventually, change becomes a hope the manifestation of which may not come too quickly. Were only all changes for the better...

If evolution didn't exist, we would have had to invent it.

Jesus Christ is risen today

Judge Lets Man Change Name to Jesus Christ

"This was not done for any reason other than I am that person. You're dealing with the real deal."

...yet somehow I have my doubts.

Oakland Tribune seeks copies of "1984" to send to politicos

Oakland Tribune
The paper says it's time for Congress to heed the warning of George Orwell. "To that end, we're asking for your help: Mail us or drop off your tattered copies of '1984.' When we get 537 of them, we'll send them to every member of the House of Representatives and Senate and to President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney."

(earwhispered by Deep Teeth)

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Great Performances . "The Nightingale" | PBS

This amazing perfoamance is on as I type. Mesmerizing.
The music is by Stravinsky, and the staging is reminescent of the works of Robert Wilson and Twyla Tharp. Beyond the beyond.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Sexy Stocking Stuffers

American Apparel of L.A.

Bush: “the first President to admit to an impeachable offense.”

Former counsel to President Richard Nixon, John Dean, said that George W. Bush was “the first President to admit to an impeachable offense.” Now Senator Barbera Boxer is "expecting a full airing of this matter by the Senate in the very near future."

Kerry: "Big Oil: Mission Accomplished?"

Senator Kerry had some interesting things to say recently...

If you ever needed a reminder of how broken Washington has become under one-party rule, we're getting it loud and clear in the closing hours of this session of Congress. Instead of sending a unified and unanimous signal to our troops on the front lines, Republicans are instead scheming to make a giveaway to the big oil companies their parting shot before Congress leaves Washington this winter. The Republicans' aim is sadly simple: mission accomplished for the big oil companies, mission unaccomplished for our troops, our environment, and America's real energy security.

In the very early hours this morning, Republican Senators, in a desperate legislative maneuver, have attached an arctic drilling proposal to the defense bill. They're putting oil companies ahead of our troops. Senator McCain got it right when he called this maneuver "disgusting."

If you agree, call your Senator now and help us get this special interest giveaway off the bill that is supposed to be helping our troops.

Call your Senators and tell them to stand up against this Republican abuse of power


This is no small fight. What the Republicans are doing dishonors our troops, it dishonors the Senate, it breaks the public trust - and in this particular instance, it would lead to the destruction of one of America's most treasured wildlife refuges. I won't stand for it.

And next time these Republicans tell me that we have to destroy this wildlife refuge for our energy security, I'm going to tell them the truth that you and I know with every fiber of our being: we cannot drill our way to energy independence; we have to invent our way there. The best ways to reduce U.S. dependence on foreign oil are to conserve more, waste less, and develop more fuel-efficient cars so we use less oil and gas.

I'm not going to stand for the hollow, empty, more of the same energy policy written by Dick Cheney in secret meetings that puts at risk the troops this defense bill is meant to protect.

Tell your Senators to oppose this underhanded attempt to hijack legislation for our troops to give an early Christmas present to the oil companies.

Does this mean the honeymoon is over?
But it is not only oil. It is water. Just ask Rummy. He salivates at the thought.
Air and thoughts are next.

Daily Kos: The Wizard of Oil

See the remake of this timeless classic...

(Hat tip to Rah Bourbon)

Life...or something like it

LOSLI has awarded this blog, anonyMoses, with BEST SOUTHERN BLOG.
(Very perceptive of them!)

Among the other winners are these gems:

Best Liberal:Eschaton
Best Moderate:The Moderate Voice
Best Video Blogging:Crooks and Liars
Best Humor Progressive:Jesus' General
Best Humor Conservative:Protein Wisdom
Best Progressive Reporting:Daily Kos
Best Conservative Reporting:Instapundit
Best Limericks:Mad Kane
Least likely to Put Cream in His Coffee / Pissed off Progressive: Rook's Rant
Best Californication: (Meant in a good way)Skippy the Bush Kangaroo
Best DC Blog:INDC Journal
Best Law Blog:Talk Left
Best American Flag Themed Posts:The Pirate's Cove
Best Semi-retired Blogger:Charlie from The Pusillanimous Wankers
Best Southern Woman's Blog:Iddybud
Best Snark:T-Bogg
Best Blogger Jess is Still Trying to Get:Ayn Clouter
Best at Finding Silly Sites of the Day:Pen-Elayne
Best Community:The American Street
Best Caption Contests:Rox Populi
Most Reminiscent of Hunter S. ThompsonBillmon
Best Jeff Gannon / James Guckert CoverageAmerica Blog
Best Blog to Make Jess Smile... Even When I Try Not TooTild
Best Maha BrahaThe Mahablog
What the F***k BlogWTF Is It Now?
Best Blogger Without a Blogroll (That I Can Find)Uggabugga

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Rupert Sir Richard Branson takes on Rupert Murdoch

Sir Richard Branson

Sir Richard Branson is taking dead aim at Murdoch's media empire by creating a giant television, internet and telephone company.
According to the London Telegraph,
Branson plans to merge his company, Virgin Mobile, with media service provider NTL in a $7.5 billion deal.
This would make Branson one of the most powerful figures in television and threaten Sky TV, part-owned by Murdoch's News Corp. It also will position Branson for future media deals.

When I see the race riots in Australia, my first thought went to Australia's own Dark Citizen, Rupert Murdoch. With his media empire, he has helped fan the flames of war and hatred, and now it is spreading onto the streets of his homeland. And to think, he was only trying to make a buck.

Fortunately for Sir Branson, the truth need not be repeated ad nauseam in order to be digested. As the bathetically adolescent Mr. Limbaugh is fond of saying: "If you repeat it often enough, people will believe you." And his echolalia knows no bounds. May Sir Richard not be so mind-deadeningly repetitive. May he inherit the riches who are the real and boundless treasure chests.

We need good, exemplary guides, not paid apologists and spin doctors.

out in
spout spin
spin is out
spin is out

He's not even trying to hide it anymore

You can quit wondering how Bush really thinks about the people dying for his bullshit war. It's becoming obvious.

Dead heroes are supposed to come home with their coffins draped with the American flag -- greeted by a color guard.

But in reality, many are arriving as freight on commercial airliners -- stuffed in the belly of a plane with suitcases and other cargo.

via Nitpicker
"You know, this war is so fucking illegal." - SPC Pat Tillman

(Thanks to Rah Bourbon)

Monday, December 12, 2005

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Tarheel Tavern: Peace Futures

Dedicated to honorary Tarheel, Jude Nagurney Camwell, the blogosphere's Iddybud, who lost her dear Mother this week, and to Ron Hudson, who, on Monday, will celebrate, along with many of us, twenty years of life, following his being told that he had tested positive for HIV. We celebrate his life, and the life completed by Jude's mom.

Art by JaWW unless otherwise indicated. Most thumbnails are clickable to the original size.

Just as when weaving
One reaches the end
With fine threads woven throughout,
So is the life of humans.

Omnipresence Abnegates Attribute

Magen's Bay

"Around 11 a.m., I’d take a communal taxi to the north side of the island and the most beautiful beach in the world, Magen’s Bay. For the next six hours, I’d swim, sleep, sip Cokes, watch for bikinis and pelicans, and read from the two-volume collected stories of Sherlock Holmes. I savored every story in those books..." - Anton Zuiker as Mister Sugar

"That money was collected from gas & vehicle taxes, but was NOT used for roads. And more of that money is being used to build "light rail". . . "

Steven Burr at Nothing Could be Finer may be retooling his position, as he has come down with the Cackatida, or some variant thereof, granting him time to consider the wacky names families create to describe polysyllabic greek terminology and that which has been doctated.

The Cackatidae

My Uncle Howard would have said I had "The Cackatida". Don't ask me what it means, and don't try goggling it either, cause I've already tried that. It was his general name for pretty much every illiness under the sun. He was a character all right. (Of course, he was also known to carry around old sticks of dynamite in the glove compartment of his rattletrap truck, and to chase around my cousins and whack them with a fly-swatter, but those story's are for another time.) My parents would say I had the "Epizudic" or the "Creeping Crud". Well, I do feel pretty cruddy, right now.

The Epizudic
So, what funny names for ailments has your family come up with over the years. Post a comment; laughter is the best medicine, don'tcha know.

"He’ll kick them with his bony hoofs
or stick them with a horn.

They say that he won’t let them leave
they have all been warned. "

Yesterday's Asheville Citizen Times: "U.S. Rep. Charles Taylor will receive the Golden Galaxy Award...

He's up to 7lbs 3.8ozs. He's a hoss, eating like crazy, and gaining like crazy.
He's awake more and more, and seriously alert when he's awake.
He hates diaper changes, blood pressure checks, and having his temperature taken.
He may be the biggest baby in the NICU, but those are still tiny tiny little fingernails.
What the Hell is it??

Dinner at Pratie Place
Dinner at Pratie Place includes the discussion on musical religious indoctrination, and insights such as "If you are a Christian perhaps you don't realize how galling it can be to have somebody else's religious or cultural music stuffed into your ears for a month" and "To use such music as a bludgeon for the diversity of students we have in taxpayer funded activities is a travesty and a perversion of all the ideals it purports to convey" and "There's a difference between being exposed to different religious and cultural traditions from your own and being compelled to participate in activities that reify them."

I particularly like this one: "It's not just the CONCERT ITSELF that's the problem - it's having to rehearse Christmas songs for a month or more preceding. Really, if you're Christian maybe this puts you into a state of happy anticipation for your holiday, but if you're not, it just prolongs the torment of being in the midst of somebody else's mishigas."

It has opened my eyes to the problem. There is no such thing as one culture, on this land, for all time.

Now go eat your soup!

Asheville, Enlightening
The Redshirts are coming! The Redshirts are coming! And the lights shine more brightly in the high country.

Healthcare Vortex
"Promoting optimum health for all children is a complex undertaking that is complicated by an adult society caught in the spiral of unhealthy lifestyle pulling the children with them into the vortex." (Fixing Healthcare)

Motivation is the ignition for a biological machine.

Hubble photo of Bora Circumnebulix
Bora! Bora! Bora! Ni hui shuo zhongwen ma?

The Coturnix Sweater is now available for viewing. Does your blog match your clothes?

Winter Comes to Carolina
Weather Wins, and we are gifted with many beautiful shots of its magic, from the lens of Colonel Corn's Camera.

Photo by Colonel Corn

Photo by Colonel Corn

Photo by Colonel Corn

Everyone dies, but no one is dead. - Tibetan Saying

Saturday, December 10, 2005

I''ll be hosting this week's Tarheel Tavern

I'm thinking about making this week's Tavern..."The Cross-posted Edition". By this I mean that I hope to cross-post it at other venues, such as Blogcritics, Daily Kos, American Street, or other such places as would draw yet more eyeballs to each participant. And being a kindly old soul, I would like to extend my generosity by saying that you can write pretty much what you damn well please, and I will sift through and pick out what I need for my little scheme.

If there is something you would particularly want me to use, either mark it as such, or write to me at baruchthescribe at yahoo dot com whereupon I might light upon your suggestion with greater felicity and huffman. Sooner is better.

Jane at Pratie Place has already jumped in, with a piece called:
Christmas in the schools: music educators weigh in

She plays the role of "J.P.", and does a splendid job of it too. I want to invite you to participate in her discussion, which really should be our discussion, and so I am going to suggest that you weigh in. Comments are blogs, according to some, and so I may use your comment as your submission on The Tavern, and link it back to your homeblogsitethingimapoo, as the Germans say. You may also post a comment here, and alert me to the bostpost you would like for me to use.

As a Liberal Christian, or liberal christian, or progressive TAOIST, or practicefailing bUdDhIsT, or Presbyunitarian, or sufijudaistical mystic, or whateverrrr, one, which is to say I, agree with her on the subtle and blatant atavism that we bring forward, to a changed world, a changed demographic, and expect the people to adapt to the products, rather than have the products adapt to the people. I mean...who is boss here?

And while some may incorrectly guess "God", the real answer is that the onus rests on the slumponixonian shoulders of Mammon, and his gathering. Not a smattering, but a splattering hath this throwback foisted forth upon "we, the future", who should have known better, but who, in the meantime, are too busy rifling through carseats for change, as it is nowhere else to be found in our stay the course parade off lemming heathcliff. I mean Montgomery Clift. Mount Gomer.
(Pinterian pause)

As so it was that the Tarheel Tavern hath stepped proudly forth into this new realm beyond the yesterday, where songs needn't words, not words salads, nor salads breads, nor breads spoons, nor spoons nightmares, nor nightmares daze. These things I quoff into my hank gurdjieff, eternal footman, and butling, mathatma choate, all to lay before you, the treasures we all share, lest we not be here at all. As we are scarce as the breeze which cloaks all in her brief chancely dance, gasped as eternal. Fickle fackel tea.

So go. Rrrrrrrrrrrite!

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Harold Pinter's Nobel Acceptance Speech

The playwright says what journalists dare not.
No wonder he gets to win a Nobel Prize.
Perhaps journalists should take a lead from his example.

Thanks to Michael Hawkins at Spontaneous Arising for the link, and this excellent blog post.

Tibetan Prayer Wheel

Tibetan Prayer Wheel

via the great Coffee House Studio

Loserman tapped to Win War on Terror


I have heard some pretty crazy things before, but this one really takes the cake. Is it that they want Democrats to take the blame and heat when we pull out of Iraq? And how will all the folks who only know Joe as "Loserman" react to his being put in charge of winning a war?

Sure Joe has droopy skin and always sounds like he is constipated, but is that any reason to use him as Rummy's replacement? Why not find someone who is not droopy and constipative for a change? Staying the course again?

Joe dreams of being a Republican, so why not just let him become a citizen Republican, and not a high-powered Republican? Is that too hard? There are enough right-wingers already. No need to add another.

Now Wes Clark is another story. He could actually get the job done. Not be another Michael Brown. Let Wes have the job. Better yet, let him have Bush's job. Then get someone who would be great on the domestic front to take over Cheney's job. Like John Edwards. So many improvements available to us. Why wait for a vote?

Please tell me this whole thing about Lieberman is just a cruel joke. Things are bad enough already.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

A soft goodbye

"When the light begins to fade,
And shadows fall across the sea,
One bright star in the evening sky,
Your love’s light leads me on my way.

There’s a dream that will not sleep,
A burning hope that will not die,
So I must go now with the wind,
And leave you waiting on the tide.

Time to fly, time to touch the sky.
One voice alone - a haunting cry.
One song, one star burning bright,
Let it carry me through darkest night.

Rain comes over the grey hills,
And on the air, a soft goodbye.
Hear the song that I sing to you,
When the time has come to fly.

When I leave and take the wing,
And find the land that fate will bring,
The brightest star in the evening sky,
Is your love waiting far for me."

- Celtic Woman

For Jude, who needs our hearts now.

The EContent 100
A "list of companies that matter most in the digital content industry."

Blogs at (Charlotte Observer)

Check out the blogs at the Charlotte Observer

And I thought blogs were bad things!

Running Mate - Richard Rubin on Local Politics
Inside the Panthers - Pat Yasinskas
Marathon Woman - Deirdre McGruder
Stork-Raving Mad - Tracy Curtis on being 40 and preggies
Inside the NBA - Rick Bonnell
Girl About Town - Emily A. Benton on Entertainment and Young Life
From the Hip - Crystal Dempsey on fashion, beauty and trends

The Art and talent of Arroe Collins

Arroe Collins

Arroe Collins is all over the map, and his talent demands it. A 26 year veteran of radio, Arroe's work has made its way onto the Bob & Sheri Radio Show, helping them earn six Marconi nominations. He was 1/3 of the nationally syndicated Pam Stone Show, helping her earn two Gracie Allan Awards. Twice he was voted Jefferson Pilot employee of the year, and was nominated to replace Casey Kasum on American Top 40.

More on this multi-talented Renaissance Man can be found at the Carolina Art Blog.

Never Compete

The Art of Worldly Wisdom

114. Never compete. Every competition damages your reputation. Our rivals seize occasion to obscure us so as to outshine us. Few wage honorable war. Rivalry discloses faults that courtesy would hide. Many have lived in good repute while they had no rivals. The heat of conflict revives and gives new life to dead scandals, digging up long-buried skeletons. Competition begins with belittling, and seeks aid anywhere it can, not only where it should. And when the weapons of abuse do not effect their purpose, as often or mostly happens, our opponents seek revenge and use them at least for beating away the dust of oblivion from anything that is our discredit. People of goodwill are always at peace, and those of good reputation and dignity are of goodwill. - Balthasar Gracian

Judge Roy Moore: The "Ayatollah Of Alabama"

The Charlotte Capitalist on the guy who ain't too keen on people, but who is running to govern Alabamie anyway.

Dave Brubeck: Take 85...right into Charlotte!

One of my favorite Dave Bs, Dave Brubeck, turns 85 today, and I, for one, am going to celebrate by pulling out "Time Out" and giving it a thorough ear. Dave is one of America's great treasures, and I would urge anyone who hasn't heard him to run out pick up "Time Out".
Total classic, and a great way to learn time signatures and strange rhythms.

Dave on Wikipedia
"Blue Rondo A La Turk" is a play on Mozart's "Rondo alla Turca", and the 9/8 metre of traditional Turkish music, the country in which the band was touring when the tune was written.

Jack Klugman's blog: Tony And Me

Tony And Me honors Jack's friendship with the late Tony Randall. Includes interviews.

(Thanks to Toby Bloomberg over at Diva Marketing for this find.)

Big Pharma's Shameful Secret

Bloomberg on this new chapter in the Serpent's Egg.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Square Yon Virgin

What if the Jesus family had been uncool?

Most people will agree that Jesus had a pretty hip family. I mean, they were pretty liberal and progressive for their time, and even somewhat mystical. They burned incense, healed people, peregrinated around in sandals and talked about philosophical matters. They never bothered with trying to fit into any so-called "mainstream". They must have known that great minds and hearts; great men and women are never nourished this way. They were not squares. But what if they had been? What if Mary were a square yon virgin?

All theories and nostrums will be considered...

We Have Lost

Iddybud and William Rivers Pitt remind us of all that we have already lost in this new century and millennium. No so-called potential "victory" in Iraq will pay for all we have lost, and sadly we're still losing.

Imagine seeing big headlines in tomorrow morning's paper saying "America wins!" "US Finally Beats Iraq" or some other variation, like "US Kills Final Terrorist". Now go and put a dollar and lives figure on that exuberance.

What? Not exuberant? Well put a dollar and lives figure on it anyway.

Now compare that will the actual dollar and lives figure.

Good investment?

Stay the course?

When many people are being killed, They should be mourned in heartfelt sorrow.
That is why a victory must be observed like a funeral.
- Tao te Ching

Sunday, December 04, 2005

OR versus AND: The Politics of Inclusion

You CAN have it both ways

My yogi friend, Rodney, and I were discussing the observation that some people are AND people and others are OR people, and this discussion became the seed of an observation I have had regarding current American politics. American Politics can be divided into AND people and OR people as well. One might say that the AND people are to so-called "big-tenters", since they are the ones most likely to tent their windows.
But what is this? The word I am thinking of is actually spelled "tint"?
OK. AND people are "big-tinters". But they are also big-tenters. And this is simple math.

Locally, the OR People are bemoaning the fact that Charlotte will soon be able to drive in cars AND ride on Light Rail. But they act like people will have to give up their precious automobiles, and say things to make other people think that as well. That they may do this to appease the auto dealers who advertise on their shows is a point worthy of investigation.

In truth, no one is going to have to give up their cars, but may, if they so choose.

AND People say you can have yet another mode of transportation. Choice. Options.

OR People tend to have dogmatic religious beliefs. It is not acceptable that one might abide by the teachings of Jesus AND Buddha, say, or Mohammed AND Jesus. But wisdom is not a zero-sum game. No one person has horded all the wisdom, and, as such, one may find it in many places.

There are other examples, but there are surely examples to the contrary.
If you have some of your own, please leave a comment, and perhaps a useful discussion will ensue. OR maybe it won't.


This is what those historians said -- and it should be noted that some of the criticism about deficit spending and misuse of the military came from self-identified conservatives -- about the Bush record:

He has taken the country into an unwinnable war and alienated friend and foe alike in the process;

He is bankrupting the country with a combination of aggressive military spending and reduced taxation of the rich;

He has deliberately and dangerously attacked separation of church and state;

He has repeatedly "misled," to use a kind word, the American people on affairs domestic and foreign;

He has proved to be incompetent in affairs domestic (New Orleans) and foreign (Iraq and the battle against al-Qaida);

He has sacrificed American employment (including the toleration of pension and benefit elimination) to increase overall productivity;

He is ignorantly hostile to science and technological progress;

He has tolerated or ignored one of the republic's oldest problems, corporate cheating in supplying the military in wartime.

In a related story from Bloomberg, Americans Want Different Type of President Next Time, Poll Says

Dec. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Three in five Americans want the next U.S. president to be completely different from incumbent George W. Bush, according to a poll by Time magazine.

Bush's policies in Iraq and high gasoline and energy prices had a ``very negative'' effect on his overall job rating for 45 percent of respondents, according to the poll, conducted between Nov. 29 and Dec. 1. The results showed 36 percent would like the next president to have policies similar to those of Bush, compared with 60 percent who want a different type of leader.

The findings indicate Bush is failing to reverse flagging approval ratings after laying out his strategy for Iraq in a Nov. 30 speech. The poll showed 41 percent approve of the job Bush is doing while 53 percent disapprove, little changed from results in September after Hurricane Katrina hit the U.S. Gulf Coast. Of those who disapprove, 76 percent said they were unlikely to change their opinion of Bush.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Virtual homophone, David Beckham, dons his Pope costume for grateful pipsqueaks

and celebrates the opening of his David Beckham Football Academy.
(Don't confuse this with American Football which has nothing to do with feet.)

Also: See Balls on Beckham

Lords of the Bells

(Thanks to Scott Huffman for this link)

It begins...

Once upon a time there was a very wise ruler who heeded the counsel of his advisors. In his Kingdom there was a very powerful feudal lord, Lord AT&T, who sported a fancy coat of arms recognized around the world. Lord AT&T was so powerful that he possessed the power of communications for all the land, and this was called a monopoly.

A ruling was ordered by the Ruler's Court of Supreme Advisors that Lord AT&T must divest his holdings and share them among other feudal lords. And so, Lord Ameritech, Lord Bell South, Lord NYNEX, Lord Bell Atlantic, Lord Pacific Bell, Lord Southwestern Bell and Lord US West were bestowed with riches beyond the dreams of avarice. They came to be called the Lords of the Baby Bells.


baraka - Google Book Search

Steve Garfield's Video Blog

Steve Garfield's Video Blog

Cambridge and Oxford Adopt U.S. Methods to Win Alumni Donations

Blog Against Racism Day

via Science And Politics, who says:

Today is the Blog Against Racism Day. You should write something on the topic today and send a link to your post here.

Also check out Bora's essay "Femiphobia and Race".

Limbaugh celebrates capture of Christians

"I don't care if they are Christian or not...I'm telling you, folks, there's a part of me that likes this"

Why is Rush Limbaugh on the side of the terrorists? Is it because he is queer? Or is it because he is black? No, it is because he is a reprobate and a reactionary automaton without conscience, manners or a proper education.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

The Philosophy of Retreat

John Wayne

Face it. We are going to have to retreat from Iraq sooner or later. The question then becomes: How many more must die before we achieve this final aim? But alas, that is so cliche. I mean, America has plenty of killing machines already, maybe it would be best if we allow the killing machines we have created, using the clay of American sons and daughters, to remain outsides the gates of America as long as possible. It's not as if we have a dearth of killing machines, or have tons of jobs to keep them occupied once they do get back. Maybe their occupation was foreordained by God to be the occupation of Iraq? On this, Science is surely mute.

But let's just say that we are ready to have our soldiers reintroduced into America. What if they start talking? What if the stories they tell do not square with the wishes of the White House? Might not this be a risk too grave to take?
Over there, you can control the breadth of their utterances.

But again, let's just say. So what is the justification for retreat? Is retreat not weakness?

According to ancient Chinese philosophy, retreat is actually strength...something with which America is obsessed, being the barrel-chested and expansive Rambo of nations. Gump on a pump. Fake giant among real pygmies. Strength good. Gimme gimme.

Of course strength is neither good nor bad, only one phase in a continuum of change -- which is why bodybuilders die young -- so don't get too excited about the prospect of acquiring it via this written tome. What is even more important is that you will also gain in weakness -- an under-appreciated virtue.

In my next catechism, I will expand on what it means to retreat,
and the best way to go about it. But in the meantime, if you are looking to retreat, why not think sideways and find yourself a good vineyard or two,
like Uwharrie Vineyards, in the ancient mountains of North Carolina. There you can sip on some good wines and ponder the philosophy of retreat. Or maybe you'd rather just live it. Either way, put this vineyard in your future plans. If you don't I will be forced to kill you.

Not really.

33 Tun: Retreat

The power of the dark is ascending. The light retreats to security, so that the dark cannot encroach on it. This retreat is a matter not of man's will but of natural law. Therefore in this case withdrawal is proper; it is the correct way to behave in order not to exhaust one's forces.

Conditions are such that the hostile forces favoured by the time are advancing. In this case retreat is the right course, and it is not to be confused with flight. Flight means saving oneself under any circumstances, whereas retreat is a sign of strength. We must be careful not to miss the right moment while we are in full possession of power and position. Then we shall be able to interpret the signs of the time before it is too late and to prepare for provisional retreat instead of being drawn into a desperate life-and-death struggle. Thus we do not simple abandon the field to the opponent; we make it difficult for him to advance by showing perseverance in single acts of resistance. In this way we prepare, while retreating, for the counter- movement. Understanding the laws of a constructive retreat of this sort is not easy. The meaning that lies hidden in such a time is important.

The mountain rises up under heaven, but owing to its nature it finally comes to a stop. Heaven on the other hand retreats upward before it into the distance and remains out of reach. This symbolises the behaviour of the superior man toward a climbing inferior; he retreats into his own thoughts as the inferior man comes forward. He does not hate him, for hatred is a form of subjective involvement by which we are bound to the hated object. The superior man shows strength (heaven) in that he brings the inferior man to a standstill (mountain) by his dignified reserve.

Nine at the top means: (optimal path of change)
Cheerful retreat. Everything serves to further.
The situation is unequivocal. Inner detachment has become an established fact, and we are at liberty to depart. When one sees the way ahead thus clearly, free of all doubt, a cheerful mood sets in, and one chooses what is right without further thought. Such a clear path ahead always leads to the good.

-anonyMoses Hyperlincoln is your blogging helpmate. Trust him with your fortune.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Laura Morante: Biography

Laura Morante

Laura Morante - Biografia -

Who should the Military Trust?

This has made its rounds, but deserves repeating...

* Richard Gephardt: Air National Guard, 1965-71.
* David Bonior: Staff Sgt., Air Force 1968-72.
* Tom Daschle: 1st Lt., Air Force SAC 1969-72.
* Al Gore: enlisted Aug. 1969; sent to Vietnam Jan. 1971 as an army
journalist in 20th Engineer Brigade.
* Bob Kerrey: Lt. j.g. Navy 1966-69; Medal of Honor, Vietnam.
* Daniel Inouye: Army 1943-47; Medal of Honor, WWII. He lost an arm.
* John Kerry: Lt., Navy 1966-70; Silver Star, Bronze Star with Combat V,
Purple Hearts.
* Charles Rangel: Staff Sgt., Army 1948-52; Bronze Star, Korea.
* Max Cleland: Captain, Army 1965-68; Silver Star & Bronze Star,
* Ted Kennedy: Army, 1951-53.
* Tom Harkin: Lt., Navy, 1962-67; Naval Reserve, 1968-74.
* Jack Reed: Army Ranger, 1971-1979; Captain, Army Reserve 1979-91.
* Fritz Hollings: Army officer in WWII; Bronze Star and seven
campaign ribbons.
* Leonard Boswell: Lt. Col., Army 1956-76; Vietnam, DFCs, Bronze
Stars, and Soldier's Medal.
* Pete Peterson: Air Force Captain, POW. Purple Heart, Silver Star
and Legion of Merit.
* Mike Thompson: Staff sergeant, 173rd Airborne, Purple Heart.
* Bill McBride: Candidate for Fla. Governor. Marine in Vietnam; Bronze
with Combat V.
* Gray Davis: Army Captain in Vietnam, Bronze Star.
* Pete Stark: Air Force 1955-57
* Chuck Robb: Vietnam
* Howell Heflin: Silver Star
* George McGovern: Silver Star & DFC during WWII.
* Bill Clinton: Did not serve. Student deferments. Entered draft but
received #311.
* Jimmy Carter: Seven years in the Navy.
* Walter Mondale: Army 1951-1953
* John Glenn: WWII and Korea; six DFCs and Air Medal with 18
* Tom Lantos: Served in Hungarian underground in WWII. Saved by Raoul

* Dick Cheney: did not serve. Several deferments, the last by marriage. Seven deferments. Seven.

* Dennis Hastert: did not serve.
* Tom Delay: did not serve.
* Roy Blunt: did not serve.
* Bill Frist: did not serve.
* Mitch McConnell: did not serve.
* Rick Santorum: did not serve. Probably took time out of his homophobia.
* Trent Lott: did not serve. Hey, he needed the time to practice his racism.
* John Ashcroft: did not serve. Seven deferments to teach business.
* Jeb Bush: did not serve.
* Karl Rove: did not serve. Probably spent it studying Machiavelli.
* Saxby Chambliss: did not serve. "Bad knee." The man who attacked
Max Cleland's patriotism.
* Paul Wolfowitz: did not serve.
* Vin Weber: did not serve.
* Richard Perle: did not serve.
* Douglas Feith: did not serve.
* Eliot Abrams: did not serve.
* Richard Shelby: did not serve.
* Jon! Kyl: did not serve.
* Tim Hutchison: did not serve.
* Christopher Cox: did not serve.
* Newt Gingrich: did not serve.
* Don Rumsfeld: served in Navy (1954-57) as flight instructor.
* George W. Bush: failed to complete his six-year National Guard; got
assigned to Alabama so he could campaign for family friend running
for U.S. Senate; failed to show up for required medical exam,
disappeared from duty.
* Ronald Reagan: due to poor eyesight, served in a non-combat role
making movies. *And then confused the movies with real life.
* B-1 Bob Dornan: Consciously enlisted after fighting was over in Korea.
* Phil Gramm: did not serve.
* John McCain: Silver Star, Bronze Star, Legion of Merit, Purple Heart
and Distinguished Flying Cross.
* Dana Rohrabacher: did not serve.
* John M. McHugh: did not serve.
* JC Watts: did not serve.
* Jack Kemp: did not serve. "Knee problem," although continued
in NFL for 8 years.
* Dan Quayle: Journalism unit of the Indiana National Guard.
* Rudy Giuliani: did not serve.
* George Pataki: did not serve.
* Spencer Abraham: did not serve.
* John Engler: did not serve.
* Lindsey Graham: National Guard lawyer.
* Arnold Schwarzenegger: AWOL from Austrian army base.

Pundits & Preachers
* Sean Hannity: did not serve.
* Rush Limbaugh: did not serve (4-F with a 'pilonidal cyst.')
* Bill O'Reilly: did not serve.
* Michael Savage: did not serve.
* George Will: did not serve.
* Chris Matthews: did not serve.
* Paul Gigot: did not serve.
* Bill Bennett: did not serve.
* Pat Buchanan: did not serve.

* John Wayne: did not serve.
* Bill Kristol: did not serve.
* Kenneth Starr: did not serve.
* Antonin Scalia: did not serve.
* Clarence Thomas: did not serve. Needed the time to study harassment of women.
* Ralph Reed: did not serve.
* Michael Medved: did not serve.
* Charlie Daniels: did not serve.
* Ted Nugent: did not serve. (He only shoots at things that don't shoot
back.) Don't get me started on this long-haired sexist neo wingnut.

The Project Gutenberg EBook of "Love Conquers All" by Robert Benchley

is now onlinereplete with illustrations.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Saturday, November 26, 2005