Ronni Bennett finishes the story about her mother. This is a must read. If you have read other parts, the links to the different sections are below. If you haven't, start at the beginning.
A mother's final, best lesson: postscript
On the day we returned to our respective homes, Joe to San Francisco and me to New York, Joe drove me to the Sacramento airport. After four months of getting to know one another in round-the-clock intimacy of caring for a woman we both loved, the parting was painful. We were both teary, but neither of us doubted we would be in touch often and we promised to follow up on our plans for Joe to visit me soon in New York.
A mother's final, best lesson: Part 1
A mother's final, best lesson: Part 2
A mother's final, best lesson: Part 3
A mother's final, best lesson: Part 4
A mother's final, best lesson: Part 5
A mother's final, best lesson: Part 6
A mother's final, best lesson: Part 7
A mother's final, best lesson: Part 8
A mother's final, best lesson: Part 9
A mother's final, best lesson: Part 10
A mother's final, best lesson: Part 11
The Project Gutenberg eBook, Sketches of Japanese Manners and Customs, by J. M. W. Silver
thanks to wood s lot
Hiroshima then and now
Why does the US ruling elite think the country "needs" to have such a large nuclear arsenal--or indeed, any nuclear arsenal at all?
They claim they are defending "civilization". What twisted idea of "civilization" is this that would require even one nuclear weapon to defend it?
There is another, more plausible explanation: it is that the ruling elite wants the US--with a total of just 4 percent of the world's population!--to continue to exercise hegemony over the entire world. Under this explanation, the use of the bombs at Hiroshima and Nagasaki were the prime example of the doctine of "shock and awe", otherwise known as terrifying/terrorizing the rest of the world until it bows to Washington's will.
Enough. Enough. Let's start working seriously, from here on, for a truly nuclear-weapons-free world.
David Hilliard photographs
thanks to Conscientious
republican national convention
Steve Gilliard has some more advice about the upcoming festivities in his hometown.
The Homeless march on New York
New York will be seriously different than Boston, for this reason alone. A blogger with some gumption would be tagging along to see what happens, because there is every likihood that the cops will tee off on these people, especially if they don't have locals with them. The NYPD is not the LAPD, but it can be willfully stupid and will arrest people on a lark.
But if you don't think the NYPD would beat women and children, well....I'd do a LOT of praying. During Giuliani's time, a rally in Harlem ended with helicopters and riot police duking it out on streets with kids and women. Honestly, she would do better to ask fo a line of construction workers and forget the monitors, who will watch them being pepper sprayed and dragged off in plastic handcuffs.
This is the kind of thing people need to bring their digital cameras for and upload on their laptops. Because this will be serious business. And this is only one of the marches. There will be a lot of protests and you better know where to run.
Harold Cazneaux - Australian Observer
Whyalla, South Australia, 1935
thanks to plep
Ronni has some timely comments of women's rights. The young today don't have any idea what it was like. Ronni remembers.
BF, AF and The Interim Generation
A couple of years ago, I ran into a snippy little 20-something just down from Cambridge with a shiny, new Harvard MBA making $150K as a Wall Street analyst. She told me that feminism is not relevant to her generation because they have evolved beyond the self-consciousness of labels.
Oh puh-leeze. Who does she think made it possible for her to go to Harvard, an all-male school when I was her age. Who does she think made it possible for her to become an analyst, an all-male enclave not so long ago. And who does she think made it possible for her to get a mortgage or any other kind of credit without a male co-signer?
Who did all that? We did, the women of the 1970s who got together in thousands of small consciousness raising sessions all over the U.S. to study Betty Friedan’s thesis and figure out how to put it to work in the real world. It was so radical then that many could not tell their husbands what we were doing at those meetings. Men made the decisions then. Men ruled the household then. Men even told wives how to vote then. And if your husband didn’t want you to read a certain book and have certain kinds of women friends, you didn’t.
So soon we forget.
Coincidences has a number of excellent links on photograms...
Photograms and Photogram Based Projects: A Worthwhile Resource
the war against some terrorists
The War Against Some Terrorists is becoming a Three Stooges movie.
Did the Bush Administration Burn a Key al-Qaeda Double Agent?
Simon Cameron-Moore and Peter Graff of Reuters reveal the explosive information that the Bush administration blew the cover Monday of double agent Muhammad Naeem Noor Khan. On Sunday August 1, Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge announced a new alert against an al-Qaeda plot concerning fincial institutions in New York and Washington, DC.
Pressed for details by the New York Times, some Bush administration official revealed that the information came from a recently arrested man in Pakistan named "Khan." The New York Times published his name on Monday.
In other words, the Bush administration just blew the cover of one of the most important assets inside al-Qaeda that the US has ever had.
It's a good thing I got my pictures of DC when I did. I couldn't now.
The extreme perimeter around the symbols of power in the nation's capital demonstrates the impossibility of barricading and random-searching our way to national security.
Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge rang the terror bell on Aug. 1, and 24 hours later, the federal police raised a high-security perimeter around the U.S. Capitol complex and the Supreme Court, at least a mile in circumference, with 14 vehicle checkpoints, including one at the corner where I live.
Washington is getting a taste of life in a police state. My neighbors are used to security. We live in the "bubble" around the federal buildings on Capitol Hill. We always get extra attention from the U.S. Capitol Police, the Supreme Court Police, the Park Police, John Ashcroft's security detail (he lives around the corner) and D.C.'s city police, so we don't worry too much about petty crime on my block. But terrorism? We can't help thinking of it now.
Since Ridge raised the national threat alert level, we're living in a lockdown here: cement "Jersey" barricades with guards, some toting automatic rifles; ubiquitous surveillance, seen and unseen; and random searches, K-9 sniffs and I.D. checks. And thanks to banks of new floodlights, the sun no longer sets on Capitol Hill.
I added two more pictures to Day 5 — Part 1 of Gordy and Madelane's
Great Pilgrimage, the journal of our trip to DC and NYC. I have the text to Part 2 done and I was organizing the pictures for it when I discovered another picture of the Washington Monument that should have been there. I also decided, at Zoe's urging, to include the double exposure of Griff's drawings of Submarine Tender in Gale, Tasman Sea and Bridge of Destroyer. It pisses me off that I blew Submarine Tender. The page has links to larger versions of the images.
The war in Iraq is starting to get real personal. That's a picture of William, my son-in-law. It was taken on May 11th. He was back on leave from South Korea. He had picked us up to take us on base to see his one day old son, Evan. He is back in South Korea but leaves Saturday for a year in Iraq. He is Army and in communications but will be supporting the Marines in Ramadi.
This is not good. Ramadi is on the road between Syria and Baghdad and in Al Anbar province, a hotbed of resistance.
Ramadiyah / Ar Ramadi
U.S. "outposts" hold line in Ramadi, Iraq
Fallujah parallels in Ramadi
U.S., Iraqis Crack Down on Porous Syrian Border
Conference Postponed Amid Fraud Allegations
The gathering to choose an interim national assembly is delayed for two weeks. Three sons of a provincial governor are kidnapped.
Insurgents warn all truck drivers they face death if they work with US
Insurgents in the flashpoint city of Ramadi, west of Baghdad, on Wednesday warned all truck drivers delivering goods to US-led troops in Iraq that they faced death.
Here is a website supporting the Marines that William will be with.
BACK TO IRAQ 2004 NEWS & MAPS
This makes me sick.
One of the great photographers is gone...
Cartier-Bresson, Who Photographed the 'Decisive Moment,' Dies
Henri Cartier-Bresson, one of the major artists of the 20th century, who used his tiny hand-held 35-millimeter Leica camera to bear humane witness to many of the century's signal events, from the Spanish Civil War to the German occupation of France to the partition of India to the Chinese revolution to the student uprisings of 1968, has died in France, the Ministry of Culture announced today. He was 95.
Here are a three pages of links that I posted some time ago about Cartier-Bresson...
And We're Back...
An insurmountable combination of heat and family issues has kept me from blogging and I’m feeling terribly guilty. I have actually started to avoid the computer which seems to look at me reprovingly every time I pass by.
The heat is unbearable. It begins very early in the day and continues late into the night. You’d think that once the sun has set, the weather would cool appreciably- no such thing in Baghdad. Once the sun sets, the buildings and streets cease to absorb heat and instead begin to emanate it. If you stand a few centimeters away from any stucco or brick wall, you can feel the waves of heat coming at you from every crack and crevice.
The electricity has been quite bad. On some days, we’re lucky to get 12 hours- 3 hours of electricity for three hours of no electricity- but more often than not, it’s four hours of no electricity and two hours of electricity. A couple of weeks ago, there was a day when our area had only one hour of electricity out of 23 hours with no power. The hellish weather had everyone out in their gardens by sunset, trying to find a way to stay cool.
Incidentally, one of man's greatest creations is definitely the refrigerator. I’ve made it a habit to rush into the kitchen every time anyone shows any inclination for a cool beverage. It gives me a great excuse to stand in front of the refrigerator for a couple of moments and let the cool- albeit slightly odorous- refrigerated air surround me. When we have some generator electricity, we keep the refrigerator working. At night, the refrigerator not only provides chilled air, and cold water, but it also offers that pale yellow light which falls like a beacon of hope across the darkened kitchen…
Here's the most basic news report from America's Iraq over the last half-year, a recent Associated Press piece in its entirety; three sentences, each a paragraph -- a kind of journalistic haiku from hell headlined, U.S. soldier killed in roadside bombing:
"A roadside bombing near the town of Samarra on Sunday killed one U.S. soldier and wounded two others, the military said.
"The attack, about 12:30 p.m., hit a passing patrol of 1st Infantry Division soldiers in Samarra, a hotbed of violence 60 miles northwest of Baghdad.
"As of Friday, July 30, 909 U.S. service members have died since the beginning of military operations in Iraq in March 2003, according to the Defense Department."
Fill in Baghdad or Ramadi or Falluja or Baquba or numerous other Iraqi cities and towns (without dropping that "hotbed of violence") and you've got a template for the post-war war as it's been fought for months. One rigged roadside bomb, one dead American and two wounded Americans -- which may mean a young woman without a limb, a young man without his sight… who knows? This has been the drip-drip-drip of Iraq for us. One death, now generally tucked away well off the front page, because when anything becomes the norm in our media world, it ceases to be the news. In the same way, constant kidnappings or regular beheadings, if endlessly repeated, will also migrate sooner or later into the deep interiors of our larger papers and drop off the half-hour that each night (minus ten minutes of medicine ads for the aging) passes on network TV for our planet's news.
Do People Want to Hurt us Because We're on the Offensive?
by Juan Cole
A sound bite from President Bush on Monday strikes me as emblematic of the country's current crisis. He said,
"It is a ridiculous notion to assert that, because the United States is on the offensive, more people want to hurt us," he said. "We’re on the offensive because people do want to hurt us."
Let me try to help Mr. Bush with this problem. The number of persons in the Muslim world who wanted to inflict direct damage on the US homeland in 2000 was tiny. Even within al-Qaeda, Ayman al-Zawahiri's theory of "hitting the distant enemy before the near" (i.e. striking the US rather than Egypt or Saudi Arabia) was controversial.
The Muslim world was largely sympathetic to the US after the 9/11 attacks. Iranians held candlelight vigils, and governments and newspapers condemned terrorism. Bush's unprovoked attack on Iraq, however, turned people against the US. The brutal, selfish, exploitative occupation, the vicious siege of Fallujah, the tank battles in front of the shrine of Ali, a vicar of the Prophet, Abu Ghuraib, and other public relations disasters have done their work.
The US was not always universally despised in the Middle East. In some countries, large majorities thought well of the US! Lawrence Pintak notes:
The latest survey results out of the Middle East show that America's favorability rating is now, essentially, zero. That's down from as high as 75 percent in some Muslim countries just four years ago.
N C Wyeth
I inherited Robinson Crusoe from my sister before I could read. I remember that I was looking forward to being able to read it myself. My sister, who is 14 years older than I am, often read it to me. I didn't understand the words, but N.C. Wyeth's illustrations took me there. The book itself was old then. I think it was given to my sister by our mother's cousin Sadie Hill, a rather eccentric and outspoken woman when I met her.
I still have and treasure that edition of Robinson Crusoe. Here is the full original text of Robinson Crusoe, with illustrations by N. C. Wyeth. The chapter divisions came later, but are included here for readability.
thanks to The Cartoonist
I have a copy of this book, too. It was part of a series of books for boys, with N. C. Wyeth illustrations, published during the 30s. Maybe the late 20s. I have most of that series. I would check the publishing date, but they are still unpacked. A condition that will soon change. They had belonged to my dad. Those illustrations really do take you there. In addition to Robinson Crusoe, there was Treasure Island, Kidnapped, David Balfour, Treasure Island, Drums, and The Last of the Mohicans. Those are the ones that I remember I have. I may have missed a couple and the series did include more. Many of these were reprinted a few years ago and are still available. Here is a list of Wyeth books. Scroll down to see the books of N.C. Wyeth. They are well worth having.
Probably one of the reasons that my dad had so many was that my grandfather, Griff, was a friend of N.C. My dad used to tell stories of catching rats with N.C.'s son Andy in the Wyeth barn at Chadds Ford, PA.
OPEC head: We have no extra oil
Cartel's president calls crude prices "crazy," warns of supply shortage as demand accelerates.
OPEC has no extra oil to immediately supply the world market to cool record-high prices, the head of the group said Tuesday.
"The oil price is very high, it's crazy. There is no additional supply," said OPEC president Purnomo Yusgiantoro, who is also Indonesia's oil minister.
U.S. oil hit a high of $44.24 a barrel Tuesday, the highest since crude futures were launched on the New York Mercantile Exchange in 1983. London's Brent crude jumped 48 cents to hit a high of $40.45 a barrel.
thanks to Angry Bear
The Mongoose and the Weasel
thanks to The Cartoonist
republican convention 8-30 to 9-2
The Rat says welcome to New York
by Steve Gilliard
A lot of blogs on the left have to decide what they really stand for, which is either helping the Democratic Party or serving as an independent voice. I don't raise money for candidates for that reason. Once you invest, then you have a stake in the campaign. This problem explodes when you cover an event like that. You have to decide to either ask questions or deal in trivia. I think the message from the readers is clear, they want more from us than trivia.
This isn't to say some of the reporting wasn't good, but I think people have to be hardier in how they approach such subjects. They have to be willing to do more than just sit and watch. There has to be a commitmewnt to be more proactive when covering an event.
The reason I bring this up is because New York will be a very different event. The protests will be large and widespread. Not just anarchist kiddies burning American flags. Cops, labor, civil and gay rights groups marching against Bush. Large, serious protests.
If the bloggers don't change how they cover events, they will miss a story, maybe the defining story of the campaign. The middle class against Bush. Because that is who will be in the streets. And the media will miss it. The reason blogs exist is not to do what the mainstream media does. When you go to the Fleet Center and sit there, and don't bring something else to the table, you're just an amateur reporter and university journalism programs can provide that.
When it comes to blogging New York, people need to figure out when the protests are and what they want to do. I think the anti-war protests will be far less interesting than the labor protests. But the overall point is that there will be protests and that people will have to be ready to deal with them. And that requires planning. No one will be holding your hand or offering you breakfasts and parties. It will require different skills than on display in Boston.
FAUCON, Bernard (France)
Bernard Faucon: Diabolo menthe, 1980
thanks to consumptive.org
this country is being run by a fucking crook
Cheney's Halliburton fined $7.5 million for lying
Apparently, our vice president was a liar before becoming Bush's puppetmaster.
Halliburton Co. secretly changed its accounting practices when Vice President Dick Cheney was its chief executive officer, the Securities and Exchange Commission said Tuesday as it fined the company $7.5 million and brought actions against two former financial officials.
The commission said the accounting change enabled Halliburton, one of the nation's largest energy services companies, to report annual earnings in 1998 that were 46 percent higher than they would have been had the change not been made. It also allowed the company to report a substantially higher profit in 1999, the commission said.
The commission did not say that Cheney acted improperly, and the papers released by the commission did not detail the extent to which he was aware of the change or of the requirement to disclose it to investors. The SEC said that Cheney had testified under oath and had "cooperated willingly and fully in the investigation conducted by the commission's career staff."
Billmon ties Cheney to this criminal activity.
Where Was Dick?
The Securities and Exchange Commission gave Vice President Cheney a nice campaign present yesterday, in the form of a tidy little settlement of its securities fraud charges against Halliburton - charges that might have proven extremely embarrassing to the company's former CEO if the SEC had showed the same relentless dedication to its job that former special counsel Kenneth Starr showed to his.
European Clocks in the Seventeeth and Eighteenth Centuries
Hooded Wall Clock with Calendar, ca. 1660–65
thanks to plep
I used to work at Boeing and, although I am so happy to not be there, still would like to see it survive. It doesn't look so good. And interesting look at how not paying attention to the enviroment may finish off Boeing.
In high-stakes airliner wars, Airbus wears the 'green' hat
Native-born Seattleites such as I tend to reflexively favor Boeing aircraft. It's hard not to develop such loyalty when half your childhood friends had Boeing-employed parents. I grew up checking each plane that flew overhead to see if it was "one of ours" or a competitor's.
But my regard for the Seattle jet maker is tarnished substantially now, because Boeing, not its current rival Airbus, is wearing the black hat in the present airplane-sale wars.
The 7E7 is billed, by Boeing, as a nimble, efficient, versatile plane that makes a huge leap in fuel efficiency over its predecessors. The A380 is billed, by Boeing, as a gluttonous behemoth — two stories and 555 seats.
But the Airbus plane is actually the more efficient in energy use, per passenger mile.
The fundamental difference is this: Airbus, like the European societies that have given rise to it, has accepted the need to avert climate change. It expects the need to minimize greenhouse gas emissions actually to change human behavior over the next two decades. It expects, for example, that through either regulation or taxation, the cost of burning jet fuel at high altitudes will rise substantially.
Oceanography from the Space Shuttle
Considering that suloys mark boundaries in the upper ocean along which there are either strong or weak current shears, then the first places to look for them from space are locations where such shears are known to exist. One such place is off the Saudi Arabian headland, Ras al Hadd, at the entrance to the Gulf of Oman. Plumes of cold water have been studied there, from satellites and ships, since 1980, but good observations from the space shuttle were unavailable until Flight 51C, in January 1985.
At the time of the observation from the Discovery, ships of the U.S. Fleet were cruising the waters off the headland, providing information on the current shear between the plume and the sea in the opening to the Gulf of Oman. Useful measurements at sea indicated differential current speeds of up to eight kilometers an hour between the plume and the spiral eddy field. An obvious boundary was observed and photographed from the shuttle, the details of which are best noted in the 250-mm photograph taken just seconds after the one using a 100-mm lens. From the ships, information seemed to confirm lines of "chaotic waves," as described by Maury, or suloys, as they are known today.
thanks to plep
This is a must read. The Bush people, in 2000, showed what they were willing to do to steal an election. It could be much worse this year.
How They Could Steal the Election This Time
On November 2 millions of Americans will cast their votes for President in computerized voting systems that can be rigged by corporate or local-election insiders. Some 98 million citizens, five out of every six of the roughly 115 million who will go to the polls, will consign their votes into computers that unidentified computer programmers, working in the main for four private corporations and the officials of 10,500 election jurisdictions, could program to invisibly falsify the outcomes.
The result could be the failure of an American presidential election and its collapse into suspicions, accusations and a civic fury that will make Florida 2000 seem like a family spat in the kitchen. Robert Reich, Bill Clinton's Labor Secretary, has written, "Automated voting machines will be easily rigged, with no paper trails to document abuses." Senator John Kerry told Florida Democrats last March, "I don't think we ought to have any vote cast in America that cannot be traced and properly recounted." Pointing out in a recent speech at the NAACP convention that "a million African-Americans were disenfranchised in the last election," Kerry says his campaign is readying 2,000 lawyers to "challenge any place in America where you cannot trace the vote and count the votes" [see Greg Palast, "Vanishing Votes," May 17].
I was an Architecture major in the early 60s. One of the buildings that amazed me was Villa Savoye designed by Le Corbusier and built in 1929. It still amazes me.
Don't make me wait, come into my house.
Today was a pilgrimage: some go to Mecca, I go to Poissy, about half an hour outside of Paris, to visit Le Corbusier's Villa Savoye. Like a good pilgrim I walked from the train station (and ended up getting lost on the highway), and like a good pilgrim I circled the house first before going in.
Several times now I've traveled far out of my way to see some piece of architecture, but this one takes the cake. Walking through that house was as valuable as a year of school, I'm sure. The distribution of the spaces, the free plan, the windows, the colors of the walls (I know, colored walls!), the arrangement of the furniture...it's enough to make you want to lie down in a comfortable and gorgeous Corbusier-Perriand chaise. So I did.
July 27, 2004. My visit to the Villa Savoye, designed by Le Corbusier and Pierre Janneret, in Poissy.
I arrived at the house at around 1:30. Ever the adventuresome one, I thought that I would walk from the Poissy train station instead of waiting for the bus. And it was all going great--finding secret closes, a great big suburban park--until I ended up on the side of a highway. But somehow, going back through the park, I made it.
thanks to Coudal Partners
’Can’t Blair see that this country is about to explode? Can’t Bush?’
The Prime Minister has accused some journalists of almost wanting a disaster to happen in Iraq. Robert Fisk, who has spent the past five weeks reporting from the deteriorating and devastated country, says the disaster has already happened, over and over again
THE war is a fraud. I’m not talking about the weapons of mass destruction that didn’t exist. Nor the links between Saddam Hussein and al-Qa’ida which didn’t exist. Nor all the other lies upon which we went to war. I’m talking about the new lies.
For just as, before the war, our governments warned us of threats that did not exist, now they hide from us the threats that do exist. Much of Iraq has fallen outside the control of America’s puppet government in Baghdad but we are not told. Hundreds of attacks are made against US troops every month. But unless an American dies, we are not told. This month’s death toll of Iraqis in Baghdad alone has now reached 700 - the worst month since the invasion ended. But we are not told.
The stage management of this catastrophe in Iraq was all too evident at Saddam Hussein’s "trial". Not only did the US military censor the tapes of the event. Not only did they effectively delete all sound of the 11 other defendants. But the Americans led Saddam Hussein to believe - until he reached the courtroom - that he was on his way to his execution. Indeed, when he entered the room he believed that the judge was there to condemn him to death. This, after all, was the way Saddam ran his own state security courts. No wonder he initially looked "disorientated" - CNN’s helpful description - because, of course, he was meant to look that way. We had made sure of that. Which is why Saddam asked Judge Juhi: "Are you a lawyer? ... Is this a trial?" And swiftly, as he realised that this really was an initial court hearing - not a preliminary to his own hanging - he quickly adopted an attitude of belligerence.
But don’t think we’re going to learn much more about Saddam’s future court appearances. Salem Chalabi, the brother of convicted fraudster Ahmad and the man entrusted by the Americans with the tribunal, told the Iraqi press two weeks ago that all media would be excluded from future court hearings. And I can see why. Because if Saddam does a Milosevic, he’ll want to talk about the real intelligence and military connections of his regime - which were primarily with the United States.
Living in Iraq these past few weeks is a weird as well as dangerous experience. I drive down to Najaf. Highway 8 is one of the worst in Iraq. Westerners are murdered there. It is littered with burnt-out police vehicles and American trucks. Every police post for 70 miles has been abandoned. Yet a few hours later, I am sitting in my room in Baghdad watching Tony Blair, grinning in the House of Commons as if he is the hero of a school debating competition; so much for the Butler report.
Indeed, watching any Western television station in Baghdad these days is like tuning in to Planet Mars. Doesn’t Blair realise that Iraq is about to implode? Doesn’t Bush realise this? The American-appointed "government" controls only parts of Baghdad - and even there its ministers and civil servants are car-bombed and assassinated. Baquba, Samara, Kut, Mahmoudiya, Hilla, Fallujah, Ramadi, all are outside government authority. Iyad Allawi, the "Prime Minister", is little more than mayor of Baghdad. "Some journalists," Blair announces, "almost want there to be a disaster in Iraq." He doesn’t get it. The disaster exists now.
thanks to Steve Gilliard's News Blog
I just finished rereading my two favorite books about art. I come back to them every few years. When I do, I wonder if they are still as wonderful as I remembered. Each time I read them I find them more wonderful then I remembered.
Zoe received an intersting email about the "improvements" in the new Medicare prescription coverage.
Money for Nothing But The Drugs Aren't Free
"Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-MA) - a longtime advocate for a meaningful prescriptiondrug benefit - is expected to address Medicare and health care issues in his speech to the Democratic National Convention tonight. His address is well timed: yesterday, the Bush administration released 1342 pages of proposed regulations for the final prescription drug benefit which takes effect in 2006. Despite their length, the regulations conveniently defer many important decisions until after a 60-day comment period.
-->One thing that is clear: while the prescription drug benefit will be a boon to some large corporations, many American seniors may see their existing prescription coverage reduced or eliminated. Those who do enroll in the Medicare prescription drug program will be slapped with considerable costs when they can least afford it. (And will they continue to have catastrophic care?? LKW
The email came from the interesting American Progress Report.
a blast from the past
Karen Nakamura, at Photoethnography.com, mentioned the 50s Petris in her review of her old camera collection. That got me going. In the summer of 1958, I was 13 years old and living at Tachikawa Air Base in Japan. I spent the summer working at the base commissary and earned money for my first real camera — a Petri 2.8. I made the mistake of giving it to a friend, who was in camera repair, for a parts camera. That was in the early 70s. I started hanging out on eBay looking for a good example. I found one for $15.50. The controls are really stiff from non-use, but it is still a nice little camera. It is a range finder with a leaf shutter that goes up to 1/300 of a second. No wonder I have always gravitated to rangefinders. I don't know if I will run some film through it or not, but it does bring back memories. I still have the slides that I took with this camera when I was living in Japan.
The thing that impressed Zoe the most was the flash attachment that came with the camera.
A little flash bulb was inserted and then ejected after it went off. Had to be careful. It was hot.
Simulated action. I paid $25 for the original one in 1958. Picture by Zoe
war against some drugs
The 'Potent Pot' Myth
Repeated claims that newer types of marijuana are far more dangerous than pot of the past create more harm than good.
So, we arrest kids for smoking marijuana, force them into treatment and then use those treatment admissions as "proof" that marijuana is addictive. Somewhere, George Orwell is smiling.
This wave of marijuana treatment has nothing to do with actual dependence. According to the latest government report on drug treatment, called the Treatment Episode Data Set, more than a third of these marijuana "abusers" did not use marijuana at all in the month prior to admission. Another 16.1 percent used it three times or less.
So more than half of marijuana "abusers" used marijuana three times or less in the month prior to entering treatment – and this, we are told, is proof that we must be fearful of highly addictive "super pot"!
There is a real story here, but it's not about the dire effects of potent marijuana. The real story is the misuse of science by government officials seeking to justify current policies and hold onto their jobs. The administration's misuse of science in this area is, if anything, more blatant than in fields that have generated far more controversy, such as reproductive health.
And with the administration now talking openly about shifting prevention and law enforcement resources toward marijuana and away from drugs like heroin and cocaine, which actually kill, this dishonesty is putting America's young people at risk.
This website is an example of how not to design a website. Don't let that stop you from reading it and looking at some amazing pictures. Be sure to click on the pictures to see the larger views. Those pictures are the ones to see.
Places of Power
Objects of Veneration in the Canadian Arctic
The land and the sea provided everything the Inuit needed. With the exception of blocks of snow, used for winter shelters and certain traps, almost everything placed on the landscape was made with movable, unworked stone. Some objects were built to endure forever; others were fashioned with great skill but meant to vanish without a trace. An example of the latter is the qaggiq, the great ceremonial igloo built each year to celebrate Siiliitut, the festival of the mid-winter moon.
Inuit throughout the Arctic knew of the existence of places of power. The real, yet sometimes ghostly, geography of these places appeared in language, song, and remarkable drawings. Some were easily recognized because they were so striking. Others were distinguished by the objects found there. Still others were unrecognizable unless revealed by someone who knew of their importance; they had to be believed to be seen.
These places are numerous and varied, and include inuksuit, the stone structures of varied shape and size erected by Inuit for many purposes. The term inuksuk (the singular of inuksuit) means "to act in the capacity of a human." It is an extension of inuk, human being. In addition to their earthly functions, certain inuksuk-like figures had spiritual connotations, and were objects of veneration, often marking the threshold of the spiritual landscape of the Inummariit, which means "the people who knew how to survive on the land living in a traditional way."
Resembling a doorway, the tupqujak was where the shaman
could pass from the earthly to the spiritual landscape.
KANISUWEETUQ • BAFFIN ISLAND
thanks to Marja-Leena Rathje
religion and women
A woman's place is to wait and listen, says the Vatican
The Vatican yesterday depicted what it claimed were women's characteristic traits: 'Listening, welcoming, humility, faithfulness, praise and waiting.'
In its most important statement on the role of women in almost a decade, the Roman Catholic Church said these virtues of the Virgin Mary were ones that women displayed 'with particular intensity and naturalness'.
The 37-page statement, published in full yesterday, was written by the Pope's top theologian, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger. As a statement of official doctrine, it would have been read, and very likely amended, by the Pope himself before publication.
This is brought to you from the people that like to hide child molestation. It's shit like this that makes me afraid of religion. A bunch of men that have no normal relations with women telling the world what women are all about. It's all based on some perverted fantasy. If that fantasy is implemented, we will be in a world of hurt.
This is from a new photo blog courtesy of consumptive.
birds on the brain
and one day in my last year of graduate school, with a documentary project going badly, my professor paul d'amato suggested a different tack. "why don't you do a master's study?" he suggested. i looked at him sideways. "isn't that what i'm doing now?" "no, no: a master's study, in the painting sense. pick a master, someone that you consider as such--someone you've always loved and not known why. find out all you can about how they worked, their technique and materials, and try to make some images in their spirit. at first it may look like imitation, but then you might discover something about your own vision that you would never have arrived at." he said that, and i realized what he was giving me: the chance to make images i would never make otherwise, freed from the impending sense that i had to finish the uninspiring project i was undertaking. this was an opportunity to stretch, and see if i could see a fraction of the way that this little old japanese man did, bowling me over as he did so. i knew immediately who my "master" was. masao yamamoto
i came back a week later sticking these tiny little tea-stained pictures to the wall. in repeating series, each a little varied in exposure, staining or size. photographs without any people in them. photographs of a city of 8.5 million people that looks like everyone just left the party. a hose wrapped around an iron fence. plastic hanging from a lamp post, flying in the wind. birds in a bare tree, looking like ornaments that had been carefully placed there. paul didn't believe i took them, at first. "you?" he kept saying incredulously. "the same person who was photographing civil war re-enactments, you took these?" and then he straightened up. "these were always there in you, waiting to be made. this should be the work you do the rest of the time you are here." and he was right and it was and i have never enjoyed photographs that i have made more, or the making of them.
From the space in between.
My Beef With Big Media
How government protects big media--and shuts out upstarts like me.
By Ted Turner
In the late 1960s, when Turner Communications was a business of billboards and radio stations and I was spending much of my energy ocean racing, a UHF-TV station came up for sale in Atlanta. It was losing $50,000 a month and its programs were viewed by fewer than 5 percent of the market.
I acquired it.
When I moved to buy a second station in Charlotte--this one worse than the first--my accountant quit in protest, and the company's board vetoed the deal. So I mortgaged my house and bought it myself. The Atlanta purchase turned into the Superstation; the Charlotte purchase--when I sold it 10 years later--gave me the capital to launch CNN.
Both purchases played a role in revolutionizing television. Both required a streak of independence and a taste for risk. And neither could happen today. In the current climate of consolidation, independent broadcasters simply don't survive for long. That's why we haven't seen a new generation of people like me or even Rupert Murdoch--independent television upstarts who challenge the big boys and force the whole industry to compete and change.
Today, media companies are more concentrated than at any time over the past 40 years, thanks to a continual loosening of ownership rules by Washington. The media giants now own not only broadcast networks and local stations; they also own the cable companies that pipe in the signals of their competitors and the studios that produce most of the programming. To get a flavor of how consolidated the industry has become, consider this: In 1990, the major broadcast networks--ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox--fully or partially owned just 12.5 percent of the new series they aired. By 2000, it was 56.3 percent. Just two years later, it had surged to 77.5 percent.
thanks to Bad Attitudes
New York City
The Year After
The enemy of the good
While waiting for things to get worse, the German Communists were tossed in camps while the Nazis destroyed Germany.
by Steve Gilliard
But a lot of these folks, and the non-Americans who read this site, forget: there are a lot of Americans who will die if Bush gets a second term. Not just the PBI or the elderly who can't afford their drugs, but places where OSHA forgets to visit, or so bleary from that second shift at Wal-Mart they crash that hooptie car of theirs into a wall. Bush is removing the protection of the law from working Americans. Not just the right to organize, but to have safe working conditions. It's nice to talk about how liberal Kerry should be, or the leftist fantasy that four more years of Bush will turn people against the GOP like they were rancid meat. Well, what about the people who catch it in the neck between now and then? What do you tell them? The revolution is coming? They need help, hell, just a president and Congress who will listen to them, try to raise the minimum wage, not ship their jobs overseas.
I wish Kerry could openly oppose the war, and not offer solutions which will never happen, but that's not a winning debate in post-9/11 America. The thing is to change presidents then call for the end of the war. Because it will never happen with Bush. He will destroy the Army first. There is nothing wrong in electing Kerry and then opposing any expansion of the war. He's not king, we can change policy when we need to, but not with George Bush in office.
By the way, I always find Steve Gilliard's News Blog an interesting read. Check it out.
thanks to Conscientious
Zoe's brother, Jim, and his wife, Mary, arrived from Iowa Saturday night for a visit. They brought with them some Iowa corn. We had it for dinner last night. Oh! Rapturous joy! Just one of life's simple pleasures.