Another scanner frenzy this eveing — still going through Briony's bugs. There are large images for all of them.
Tour de France
Lance Armstrong increased his overall lead in the Tour de France after winning the 19th and penultimate stage, a 50km individual time trial from Regnie-Durette to here on Saturday.
Armstrong, who held a 5min 06sec lead over Spaniard Joseba Beloki prior to the stage, now rides into Paris for Sunday's final 20th stage with a 7:17 lead over the ONCE rider.
Beloki's main concern was trying to keep Lithuanian Raimondas Rumsas from stealing his second place overall, however he did enough to retain a one-minute lead over the Lampre rider.
Armstrong, who picked up his fourth stage win of the race and 15th overall, was the biggest winner of the day.
1. Lance Armstrong (USA), U.S. Postal, at 78:34:25.
Tomorrow's stage is a largely ceremonial ride into Paris with a mass sprint at the end. Lance will let the sprinters play and then he will do the victory lap. Four in a row! Five? Stay tuned next year.
Wall Street — White House Crooks
Responding to the bombshell revelation that senior bankers at Citigroup actively helped Enron hide billions in debt, Enron Lawyer of Last Resort Robert Bennett deftly summed up the real reasons for the current economic crisis: "Most of the problems -- not all of them -- are things that have been legal and acceptable".
And while honest lawyers are about as common as undercompensated CEOs, in this case, Bennett is actually telling the truth.
Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes public corruption, today reported that security staff at The White House threatened a process server with arrest over his attempt to serve Vice President Cheney with a complaint filed against him by Judicial Watch on behalf of shareholders of Halliburton. It is a crime to interfere with service of process.
The Israeli re-occupation of West Bank towns is on the verge of causing a humanitarian crisis among Palestinians, diplomats and aid agencies are warning.
As many as a fifth of Palestinian children are suffering acute malnutrition, according to the preliminary results of a new survey by an American aid organisation.
Tour de France
All that remains in the 89th Tour de France is Saturday's final time trial and Sunday's frolic back to the final sprint on the Champs Elysées circuit in Paris.
Armstrong got over the final speed-bump to what will likely end with his fourth consecutive Tour victory Sunday in Paris. While the yellow jersey is all but sewn up, there's still a fight for the green points jersey.
Overall after 18 stages
1. Lance Armstrong (USA), U.S. Postal, 77:30:35.
Saturday is the last stage for Lance to make a statement. I'm sure he will have something to say.
My son Robby were out on my deck last night when I saw this sucker. I captured him in a jar and commented to Robby "It'll take a few days for him to die so that I can scan him." "Why don't you put him in the freezer?" says he. He was appropriatly still when I took him out of the freezer several hours later and scanned him (the spider — not Robby). Check out the big pictures.
Tour de France
There was a relaxed feeling at the start of Thursday's stage 17 deep in the French Alps. The hardest mountain stage of the Tour to La Plagne was comfortably behind everyone. But four hard climbs still stood between the racers and the finish line in Cluses. From there it might be a relatively easy ride back to Paris for Sunday's conclusion on the Champs Elysées.
Lance Armstrong again defended his yellow jersey as his U.S. Postal Service team worked hard to cover every move made by his most dangerous rivals.
Overall, after 17 stages
1. Lance Armstrong (USA), U.S. Postal, at 72 h 50:25.
Three stages left. Some hills, a time trial, and the ride into Paris. Lance has this one sewed up — unless, of course, a truck runs over him.
The Emergence of Advertising in America: 1850 - 1920 (EAA) presents over 9,000 images, with database information, relating to the early history of advertising in the United States. The materials, drawn from the Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library at Duke University, provide a significant and informative perspective on the early evolution of this most ubiquitous feature of modern American business and culture.
I had heard that Briony (she graduated from high school the same year as my son Robby) had ordered some bugs off the Internet and was making some etchings using them as models. I saw her in Payless a couple of days ago and told her of my bug project. She went home, took a look at my dead bugs, and blew her mind. She brought over her dead bugs this afternoon — some real nice ones. I went into a scanning frenzy this evening. Here are three. Check out their big pictures! A lot more colorful than the ones I find around the house.
Well, I'm scandalized, but I suppose I should have known. In a world where "organic" means almost nothing, why should I have thought a baby carrot was, in fact, a baby carrot? Silly, gullible me. I still think labels usually tell the truth. In the produce section, even!
Yes, it's true folks. Those little carrots in the bags that y'all put in your kids' lunches and dip in ranch dressing at your barbeque ... they are adult carrots. Adult carrots shaved down and rounded out to look baby carrots (or to look like what marketers think we think a baby carrot would look like, because, hell, they know we're just a bunch of plebes and have never been anywhere fancy enough to have laid eyes on a real, fresh, pre-pubescent carrot).
"The demand is going to increase and the world's ability to produce commercially caught fish has pretty much peaked," says Dan Swecker, secretary-treasurer of the Washington (State) Fish Growers Association and also a state senator. "The increased demand is going to have to be supplied by aquaculture" -- meaning farmed -- "products."
If he's right, and if it will, there's still the little matter of its record. Much of the nutritional benefit of wild fish is lost in the farmed variety because of their artificial diets. Proximity to farmed salmon has led to rampant disease and decline among native fish in every part of the world except the Pacific Northwest...so far. Meanwhile, genetically engineered salmon await FDA approval, part of the vast, uncontrolled biologic experiment in which we are all subjects. The dilemma is apparent: To fill an extraordinary demand built on genuine need, the multibillion dollar aquaculture industry has turned the carnivorous salmon into a plant eater, while changing its look, taste and nutritional value. The dilemma doesn't end there: If they ruin the seas to grow an inferior product, can you call it a solution?
Just say know to drugs
thanks to MetaFilter
You Are What They Ate:
What is the difference between a food and a drug? Most of us would agree that an apple is certainly "food", but is a vitamin C tablet? Coffee is an integral part of the American diet, but is a caffeine pill as well? Can some drugs be considered food, and some foods considered drugs? According to the dictionary, a food is "a substance that is taken into the body to sustain life, provide energy, and promote growth". Using this definition, entheogenic preparations such as soma, ayahuasca, and others are certainly "foods". Pharmacologically speaking, these compounds might also be classified as "drugs", but the distinction between the two becomes quite fluid when closely and thoughtfully examined. When our earliest ancestors were finding new items for dietary inclusion using trial and error, they most certainly happened upon psychoactive specimens. These must have gained the attention of the early explorers, as some of them have remained in our diet ever since, perhaps catalyzing profound cultural change. Psychoactive foods seem to be underestimated as agents of cultural change. It may well be that these compounds are, in fact, the most impressive catalysts of cultural change, perhaps being partly responsible for language, religion, and other phenomena which are integral parts of human culture.
thanks to abuddhas memes
In recent days there has been much discussion of whether marijuana -- hash, weed, grass, pot, maryjane, bhang, ganja, call it what you will -- should be decriminalized. This has given rise to speculation over whether this or that well-known public figure has or has not used the drug.
In the interests of full disclosure, and in answer to persistent rumours, I feel compelled at this time to make a frank admission. This isn't easy, but here goes: Years ago, as a graduate student, like many young people of my generation, I experimented without marijuana.
thanks to abuddhas memes
Challenging Ignorance on Islam:
People with power and influence in the U.S. have been saying some very stupid things about Islam and about Muslims since September 11. Some of it is rooted in conscious malice, and ethnic prejudice that spills over into religious bigotry. But some is rooted in sheer historical and geographical ignorance. This is a country, after all, in which only a small minority of high school students can readily locate Afghanistan on the map, or are aware that Iranians and Pakistanis are not Arabs. As an educator, in Asian Studies, at a fairly elite university, I am painfully aware of this ignorance. But I realize it serves a purpose. It is highly useful to a power structure that banks on knee-jerk popular support whenever it embarks on a new military venture, at some far-off venue, on false pretexts immediately discernable to the better educated, but lost on the general public. The generally malleable mainstream press takes care of the rest.
The settlements are Israel's center piece in the the war against the Palestinians. Eyal Weizman exposes them for what they are — a multi-billion dollar investment in a permanent occupation of Palestine and control of the Palestinians.
Lines in the sand
But how can a small town full of civilians infringe people's human rights? "If you look at the layout of settlements, they are always built on hilltops. People know that, but they may not realise that they also are built in rings, over the summit, in a way that generates territorial surveillance in all directions. I began to understand that these are urban-scale optical devices, and every design move in them is calculated to enhance vision." Only by looking at the original architectural plans, he argues, would one register something so simple as the fact that each house is built with its bedrooms innermost, its living quarters facing the vista.
"The planners always speak about the view as pastoral and biblical, almost in a romantic sense. They speak about the terraces and olive groves and stone houses, which are obviously created for them by the Palestinians. The Palestinians are almost like the stage workers who create a set, but they then have to disappear when the lights come on." But it is not only the Palestinians' rights who are infringed, he argues. "The army also uses the eyes of the civilian settlers, almost hijacks them, to generate territorial surveillance. There is almost an illegal use of civilians to generate supervision of another part of the civilian population."
The study that is the basis for this: The Politics of Verticality
Professionals in Israel
Sharon's other tactic (he is the father of the settlements) is to answer any Palestinian effort towards de-escalation of the violence with Israeli escalation of the violence.
Alex Fishman was reporting that (a) last October, Hamas had under pressure from the Palestinian Authority agreed to stop suicide bombings inside Israel proper; (b) the Israeli government knew this; (c) it discussed whether to kill a Hamas leader for his involvement in planning such terrorist bombings; (d) it knew if it did so the cease-fire agreement would lapse; (e) if so, there would be more suicide attacks against Israelis; and (f) the authorities probably could not prevent all such efforts, so at least one would succeed.
Fishman was right. Twenty-five Israelis died.
Why do I think it is important for us to know this history?
Because on MONDAY just this past week, according to a detailed report in the London Times of July 24, the "militant" factions besides Hamas that have joined in terror attacks during the last few months had agreed to issue a formal statement abandoning all attacks against Israeli civilians. And as those discussions went forward, on Monday, the chief of Hamas, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, announced publicly that Hamas was considering entering into a cease-fire if Israeli troops left the Palestinian cities and villages they have recently reoccupied.
These discussions, and the public announcement by Hamas, were known to the Israeli authorities.
THE VERY NIGHT OF THE DAY on which Hamas made its public statement and the broader discussions achieved agreement on a cease-fire by other groups, came the midnight bombing of the Gaza apartment complex that killed Sheikh Salah Shehada and 14 others, mainly children and women.
And let's not forget that the Saudi peace initiative was answered with the reoccupation of the West Bank.
From the Late Mid-Summer 2002 edition of Ralph...
I have before me the week's menu of specials at the Sven Duva Restaurant, near my location at the BMC. For an experienced world-traveller like myself, with a smattering of several foreign languages and a sharp eye for English cognates, these exotic Swedish dishes hold no terrors.
For example, Tonsfisksallad med Sardeller och Oliver is obviously tunafish salad with sardines and olives, unless reference is being made to someone named Oliver. Spansk Bondomelett is obviously Spanish omelette with Bondo. And Pelotas en Salsa Roja is without a doubt baseballs in red sauce, although I am at a loss to explain what it is doing on a Swedish menu.
Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Poop But Were Afraid to Ask
Note: This is the original Scoop on Poop. There are several unauthorized, plagiarized versions out there that do not give credit to this page's author, and which are incomplete. Do not be fooled by imitations!
thanks to reenhead.com
Tour de France
The steepest and most difficult mountains of the 2002 Tour de France delivered yet another long breakaway that held out to the end for victory. Rabobank's Michael Boogerd attacked on a descent to win his first Tour stage victory on a summit in Wednesday's 16th stage. The big- toothed Dutch rider held off a late-stage charge by overall leader Lance Armstrong to take what he called the best moment of his professional career.
Armstrong attacked following steady work by José Luis Rubiera and Roberto Heras, but U.S. Postal Service directeur sportif Johan Bruyneel said it was more an attack on his rivals than an effort to win the stage.
Armstrong widened his margin over second-place Joseba Beloki to 5:06. With four days remaining in the 2002 Tour, Armstrong looks on target to win a fourth consecutive maillot jaune.
Overall after 16 of 20 stages
1. Lance Armstrong (USA), U.S. Postal, 68:43:22
Boogerd, the big Dutchman, lost half his lead to Armstrong when the Texan took poured it on up the last pitch. Boogerd still had enough to win, and he came across the line pumping his fists and flashing his teeth -- immortalized.
Armstrong padded his lead as he patted the rider's britches ahead of him as they glided over the line, then rode straight through a crack in the fences to a security envelope behind the big shell stage.
Later, Robbie Hunter, the fair-haired sprinter from South Africa, said, "This wasn't a fun day, that's for sure."
"We are controlling the race and the yellow jersey," said Postal spokesman Yogi Muller, "and that's our goal."
Tom Tomorrow was in good form this morning.
And while I truly hate to blow my own horn, I do feel compelled to reiterate that I called this one last March. (Of course, if I wanted to be immodest, I could also point out that small investors would have received much better advice from this cartoon over the past five years than from most of the financial experts on cable business shows combined...but that would be unseemly of me, wouldn't it?)
Did Telecom Reformers Dial the Wrong Number?
George W. Bush is shattering records for the worst first 18 months in office for a U.S. president as measured by the benchmark Standard & Poor’s 500. In his first year-and-a- half in the White House, Bush presided over a 36.9 percent decline, almost twice the percentage drop of Herbert Hoover, the president who led the nation into the Depression.
thanks to follow me here...
Another dead bug. See the large versions — and more bugs.
This is really amazing.
thanks to MetaFilter
War Against Some Terrorists
How to Win the War on Terrorism
Most Americans were shocked by the attacks on the Pentagon and World Trade Center. Suddenly, like a bolt out of a clear blue sky, radical Muslims who hated us for no conceivable reason had killed 3,000 innocent people for reasons both mysterious and nefarious. Our response was knee-jerk: we had to get even. The "evildoers," Bush told us, were led by Osama bin Laden. He, and they, lived in Afghan caves. We would bomb those caves, he promised, until America was safe again.
In truth, Afghanistan had always been a sideshow of anti-Americanism, a mere backlot funded and armed by Pakistani intelligence. Most of the training camps, extremist groups and Al Qaeda itself were in Pakistan. Gen. Musharraf, our new "ally," was virulently anti-American and pro-Taliban. Bombing Afghanistan never made sense as a way of "getting" the 9-11 guys because the 9-11 guys were all Saudis and Egyptians. Bombing may do the trick, but you'd have to bomb the right country -- and Afghanistan isn't it.
The Boom or Bush Cycle
Tour de France
The longest stage in the Tour de France wasn't the longest day on the bike. That honor goes to last Friday's stage to Plateau de Beille that lasted for almost seven hours.
The peloton was in a hurry to finish the seven rated climbs in Tuesday's hot 226km stage 15, a day that looked harder in the road book than it did on the road. They just made it through in less than six hours.
The stage presented few problems for Lance Armstrong, who muscled a day closer to his fourth consecutive victory. He and his U.S. Postal Service team rode a controlled race and Armstrong easily answered a late charge to the finish line by second-place rider Joseba Beloki. Armstrong finished ninth and retained his 4:21 margin over Beloki.
OVERALL AFTER 15 STAGES
1. Lance Armstrong (USA), U.S. Postal, 62:53:36.
The excited fans who line the route of the Tour de France can give the wrong impression: not all the French care about the world's most prestigious bicycle race. Yet, even many of those indifferent to the sight of wiry men peddling furiously seem to have time for Lance Armstrong, the three-time Tour champion who is now well placed for a fourth successive victory at the finish line in Paris on Sunday.
thanks to Dumbmonkey
The hardest stage of the Tour starts in just a little over an hour. Then another Alps stage, a hilly stage and the final time trial before going into Paris. Lots of work still to do.
Capitalism Without Conscience
6 little words
Living With Bears
The Incredible Shrinking Stock Market
Life can be so hard living on an island in Puget Sound
It was a busy day putting together the archive for Monday's TestingTesting and putting out customer's fires. And it was *hot* today — 87 degrees. Now, Mr. Vreeland and Mr. Jensen might scoff mightily and call me a heat wimp — they would be correct. I just am not comfortable unless it is overcast and raining. But sometimes you just have to make do.
My LOML, Zoe, has a little 19 foot boat that we finally put in the water last week. Instead of mooring it at Oak Harbor, a 40 minute drive, she was able to rent dock space at Lagoon Point, just 5 minutes away. She chronicled our adventures in launching in this little slide show (registration required).
One way to beat the heat is to get out on the water.
This was the first time out this year. It ran a little rough at first but shortly was running on a plane.
The Olympics were beautiful, as always. It's about a 20 minute ride over to Port Townsend from Lagoon Point. Some other day.
We came in as the sun was getting low. Tied it up and hosed it down. We were much cooler.
The pictures and sound are up for Karen Blaine's show Monday night.
She has an amazing voice and knows how to use it. It's a lot of work putting on something like TestingTesting but it's worth it to hear music like this in my own living room.
My every other week living room webcast, TestingTesting, happens tonight. Our special guest is Seattle singer Karen Blaine. She is amazing. You can hear her set at last year's IAC Benefit Concert. Click on in during the show and leave your comments.
Tour de France
Richard Virenque of the Domo-Farm Frites team hung tough to win a remarkable stage victory on the summit of Mont Ventoux Sunday , while Lance Armstrong of the U.S. Postal Service left all of his main rivals in the dust to consolidate his yellow jersey and pull 4:21 ahead of runner- up Joseba Beloki of ONCE-Eroski.
OVERALL - After 14 stages
1. Lance Armstrong (USA), U.S. Postal, at 56:51:39.
Patience was the chosen tactic for the day. Lance and Johan Bruyneel wanted to wait and see what the other teams and riders were going to do before showing their cards. The first day in the mountains, Lance said he didn't feel he was climbing at 100-percent. His legs have since come around, and he is back to being right where he wants to be.
When Lance says his legs are good, it is like having four aces up your sleeve. The waiting game paid off when the attacks started coming from the ONCE team. Today was the first time they really tried to attack the yellow jersey, and Lance decided to answer their aggression with one well-timed counter attack.
Lance goes into the second rest day of the 2002 Tour de France with a 4:21 lead over second-placed Joseba Beloki. There are three hard days in the Alps following the rest day, the hardest of which being the stage to La Plagne. Lance is in the position he wanted to be by this point in the Tour, but he knows the race is far from over. Next week will be the hardest third week of any Tour de France in recent memory.
Lance is pulling away from his opponents but the fun isn't over. Six stages left.
Deregulation's big lie
It shows what a big lie deregulation was based on.
The big lie of deregulation was that by letting these companies do whatever they wanted with much less oversight, competition would force them to better serve the public with lower prices and better service through the force of market competition.
But what "deregulation" really means isn't [a kind of] deregulation where there is no regulation [at all]. It just means regulation on behalf of powerful interests with no one representing the public. So these companies totally fleeced the public and left everyone -- their shareholders, workers and taxpayers -- holding the bag.
thanks to Robot Wisdom
DriveinMovie.com is dedicated to the culture, history, preservation and promotion of Drive-in theatres. As multiplexes multiply, and as screen sizes continue to shrink, Drive-in theatres offer a nostalgic alternative and also a greater value for your dollar.
The images are flickering and faded but persistent. They have the warm, rotted-orange hue of something long held and cherished:
I'm lying on my stomach on the roof of an AMC Pacer — the unfortunate car that looks like a fishbowl on wheels — under a starlit sky. "Death Race 2000" is playing on a huge screen floating in blackness. My mom hollers up at me to close my eyes during the nude scene. A 10-year-old shouldn't see that — although she hadn't said anything about the violence. I say OK as I stare slackjawed at the entire scene.
We have a drive-in on the north end of Whidbey Island — the Blue Fox Drive-in just south of Oak Harbor. The screen blew down in a wind storm a couple of years ago. They put up a new screen. I guess they plan to be around for awhile.
The Army has a State
Mirabeau, one of the fathers of the French Revolution, coined the phrase: "Prussia is not a state that has an army, but an army that has a state." Does this apply to Israel, too?
In theory, the Israeli army is subject to the political leadership. We are a democracy, after all. The elected government makes the decisions, the army executes them. That is how it should be. But reality is far more complex.
Furthermore, what, as far as Sharon, Ben-Eliezer and Ya'alon are concerned, would be considered a military victory? The raising of white flags in the West Bank? The removal of Arafat? An end to the terror? None of these scenarios provides a real guarantee of reconciliation between the peoples - the correct objective toward which we should be striving.
And still no mention has been made of the possibility that a crushing military victory would only strengthen the feelings of rage and contempt on the part of the Israeli public toward the Palestinians, further sealing it off from the need to achieve an end to the conflict with them.
Domb claims that while most modern Jews have departed from true Judaism, the Neturei Karta - which means 'guardians of the holy city' in Aramaic - are the minority charged with keeping the faith. The movement was established in Jerusalem in the 30s. Its supporters, living in the Holy Land since the 18th century, had always opposed a Jewish state and were concerned about the growing pressure to establish a Jewish homeland. Domb insists that its tenets go back to the origins of Jewish identity.
'Neturei Karta is not an idea, it's not a new trend, it's not a party with a programme,' he tells me. 'It is the authentic Jewishness of the Jewish people.' At its theological heart lies the belief that the Jews have been exiled for their sins and are destined to suffer, a fate which will be redeemed only when divine intervention, with the coming of the Messiah, changes the world order. In the meantime, Jews must remain stateless, living under the rule of whichever country hosts them. Zionism, as the desire for a sovereign state, represents a blasphemous rejection of God's will. 'An earthly solution for the Jewish people is not possible, because we are not destined for any earthly happiness. The Jewish people should come to their senses and see that the Zionist state is one big misfortune,' says Domb.
Mr. Craven Walker of England is definitely the one responsible for the proliferation of all of these liquid motion lamps. The actual inventor's identity is something of controversy. I've heard a couple of versions:
The War Against Some Terrorists
It is highly likely that the US launch attacks which start the war with Iraq within the next 75 days, and probably between August 15 and October 5.
It is not necessary to be a military strategist to figure this out. It won’t be based on a preparatory build up of US and allied troops, nor initiated because of any particular actions by the Iraqis which require a military response. There may a fabricated “story” the Bush administration uses to try to “sell” the war. But it’s pretty obvious what the real reason is.
The time range described above is optimal for influencing the November US Congressional elections. With Bush’s popularity plummeting as millions of Americans discover that their life savings and retirement funds have shriveled to a fraction of what they were, the Bush administration has but one trump card left to try to turn the tide-- start the war with Iraq.
OUR PHONY FOREIGN POLICY 'DEBATE'
The killing fields
I recently linked to a piece by Art Spiegelman on Bernard Krigstein. In it he mentions a story that Krigstein did:
What reputation he has rests on a handful of short stories he illustrated in 1954 and 1955 for EC comics (the folks who brought you Tales from the Crypt and Mad), but one of those stories, "Master Race," was an accomplishment of the highest order—a masterpiece.
Thanks to Robot Wisdom, here is the story:
With the stock market plunging the other day and surveys depicting Americans as increasingly worried about the way the Bush administration is dealing with the economy and corporate fraud, Treasury Secretary Paul H. O'Neill, the administration's main voice on economic issues, was in Kyrgyzstan.
Mr. O'Neill's absence — after a trip to Africa in late May and before a trip to South America late this month — reinforced the view on Wall Street and in political circles here that President Bush's economic team was not responding sufficiently to growing economic and political pressures.