Monday, 31 January 2005

Human Performance Enhancement in 2032: A Scenario for Military Planners
US federal judge backs Guantanamo challenge

A US federal judge in Washington has ruled that special military tribunals being used to try hundreds of detainees at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba are illegal.

Judge Joyce Hens Green said the tribunals denied the detainees their basic rights under the US constitution. Many inmates have been held without charge or access to lawyers.

last June the US Supreme Court ruled that inmates did have the right to challenge their detention.

meanwhile the Bush administration believes that the inmates have no constitutional rights.

Vietnamese desserts


IF you're struggling to eat your vegetables when you'd rather eat ice cream, why not combine the two

People can come in and have a mashed potato and sage and onion ice cream or they can have two scoops of the sage and onion or try the cranberry sorbet.

At the firm's factory in Mill Street, Peel, Iain served up lychee and ginger sorbet as a starter, followed by a main course of slices of turkey ice cream, large scoops of mash potato flavour, sprout flavour made to look like the vegetable, cranberry sorbet and sage and onion stuffing flavour with chocolate source used as a substitute for gravy, with Christmas pudding ice cream as a sweet.


Our product is similar to "sand art" except when you finish making it, you can eat it

The candy comes in a "sand-like" powder form that is delightfully colorful and tart or sweet.... and this artful fun candy is called "Rainbow Dust".

Rainbow Dust is available in following mouth-watering flavors: Banana, Blue Raspberry, Bubblegum, Candy Cane, Cherry, Chocolate, Cotton Candy, Fruit Punch, Grape, Green Apple, Lemon Lime, Key Lime, Kiwi, Orange, Peach, Pineapple, Pink Lemonade, Sour Apple, Sour Black Cherry, Sour Cherry, Sour Grape, Sour Peach, Sour Watermelon, Vanilla & Watermelon.

(via grow a brain)

(via fleshbot)
English titles in French television programmes could soon be a thing of the past, following a recommendation by the Conseil superieur de l'audiovisuel, the country's broadcasting watchdog.

France's CSA has called on television and radio stations to "try to use French in their programme titles". Will popular shows such as Star Academy and Popstars be renamed to fall in line with the recommendation?

Created in 1989, the CSA is responsible among other things for protecting and regulating the use of French on television and radio.

Liberation newspaper refers to "Ze Conseil superior of ze audiovisuel" and reports that it is urging channels to "speak francais, plize" and it wonders how wieldy some titles will be.

Sunday, 30 January 2005

Just a Minute

text on things

wrist band

"Z R the comfort zone Morning Dance"


text on text on things
recycled post: michael jackson

whenever michael jackson speaks its usually to utter something so numbingly banal its as if he were reciting from a greeting card.

but putting that thought aside for a moment, simon smith summarises that in many ways michael is a pioneering transhuman icon.

"It's easy to dismiss Jackson as a freak, but this misses the point: He is our freak."

"People mock his expressed desire to live forever while embracing the latest news on stem cell therapy. They scoff at his pursuit of agelessness while slathering on wrinkle-reducing creams. They criticize his plastic surgery while injecting themselves with Botox. And they're moved to punitive justice over purported pedophilia while idolizing youth and drooling over Britney Spears."

Are Flagan writes in "poster child for the future" "He is a gendered being that denies the sex of his organs and, seemingly, prefers an androgynous innocence to sexual difference,.... He is racially ambiguous after switching from black to white,.... he strongly aspires to be a father, but denies romanticized reproduction its innate role in the formation of the nuclear family and disciplining of the body, preferring instead the copulation of the test tube and the marriage of the legally binding contract."

"In his book The Information Bomb, Paul Virilio describes modernity as the enamoring of immaturity."

simon smith concludes "micheal jackson now embodies our age itself - our hopes that we can move from human to something more and our fears that we'll end up something less."
"Progress is not a wave for you to ride on or a Truth for you to die for, but a project that needs many collaborators to succeed. I want to change the world, not to leave it. I want transformation, not transcendence."

he quotes author Bruce Sterling "The future, isn't an alien world, it is this very world.......The future is a process."

Dale Carrico's progressive futures column


amor mundi
Also born out of Chaos were Gaia, called Earth, or Mother Earth, and Uranus, the embodiment of the Sky and the Heavens, as well as Tartarus, god of the sunless and terrible region beneath Gaia, the Earth.

Gaia and Uranus married and gave birth to the Titans, a race of formidable giants, which included a particularly wily giant named Cronus.

In what has become one of the recurrent themes of Greek Mythology, Gaia and Uranus warned Cronus that a son of his would one day overpower him. Cronus therefore swallowed his numerous children by his wife Rhea, to keep that forecast from taking place.

This angered Gaia greatly, so when the youngest son, Zeus, was born, Gaia took a stone, wrapped it in swaddling clothes and offered it to Cronus to swallow. This satisfied Cronus, and Gaia was able to spirit the baby Zeus away to be raised in Crete, far from his grasping father.
... "the thing with magic is that a lot of it is about writing anyway."

"To cast a spell, that's a fancy way of saying spelling. Grimoire, the big book of magical secrets, that's a French way of saying grammar. It's all about language and writing. It's all about incantation, all these things. Magic, really, it turns out to just be a continuation of the stuff that I've been doing anyway. Using certain arrangements of words or images to affect people's consciousness."

"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean - neither more nor less."

"The question is," said Alice, "whether you CAN make words mean so many different things."

"The question is," said Humpty Dumpty, "who is to be master - that's all."

(...Lewis Carroll,Through the Looking Glass)

"Public buildings may be destroyed, public officials murdered, but such efforts will never bring about the destruction of the idea of the State. The State is a state of mind, an idea which cannot be harmed by violence. Ideas can only be attacked with better ideas."

(Voluntary Resistance By Carl Watner)

After stumbling upon the Latin alphabet, which was written in chalk on the sidewalk, he mistakes it for a very long word. With marching band-like accompaniment, he breaks into song, pronouncing the "word" ....


10 Things We Learned About Blogs

"Radio had its golden age in the 1930s. In the 1950s, it was television's turn. Historians may well date the golden age of the blog from 2004 - when's most searched-for definition was blog..."
Super Free Will: Metaprogramming and The Quantum Observer

Saturday, 29 January 2005

on tap
Drubskin - Dirty Pervy Homo Punk Rock Artwork

(via fleshbot)
Vampire watermelons

The belief in vampires of plant origin occurs among [Gypsies] who belong to the Mosl. faith in KM [Kosovo-Metohija]. According to them there are only two plants which are regarded as likely to turn into vampires: pumpkins of every kind and water-melons.

Vampires of vegetable origin are believed to have the same shape and appearance as the original plant.
I have an image of Jesus on my penis
Wikipedia: Unusual articles

"This page is for Wikipedians to list articles that seem a bit unusual. These articles are valuable contributions to the encyclopedia, but are somewhat odd, whimsical, or... well, something you wouldn't expect to find in Encyclopedia Britannica."

... stewart lee INTERVIEWS alan moore ...

The concept behind the program is that a well-known figure from the entertainment industry begins the series interviewing the person of their choice ... Next week the subject from last week's interview becomes next week's interviewer and chooses who the new subject will be and so on.

or You can also listen to an archived version of the show here.

(via linkmachinego)
Rusty is a homosexual



(via b3ta)

Friday, 28 January 2005

mexican auditorium cam

Digiwall, developed at the Interactive Institute in Sweden, is an interactive climbing-wall with sensor-equipped grips that register hands and feet.

These grips also light up or act as keys on a keyboard and music is played according to your climbing.
WHAT HAPPENED WHEN: ...the first uk Big Brother summer of 2000

Week 1

"Mel was the talk of the House after flirting with Andy, Darren and shy farmer Tom in the space of three days."

"City man Nick amazed the housemates with several outlandish tales including once working as a male escort."

"Andy said he used prostitutes in Amsterdam, while Bolton lass Nichola shocked the girls by telling them she'd been sacrificed in a previous life."

"There was plenty of touchy-feely behaviour with a host of pedicures, massages, body building and yoga sessions. Nichola also instigated a stripping session as some of the housemates made body prints on the wall."

"Nick and Andy secretly arranged voting for Sada and Caroline in the first nominations. Nick claimed: "Tom thinks the same". Darren and Craig (the eventual winner) were not immune to such Machiavellian manoeuvres."

Digital Spy Forums -- Reality TV
fish cam

BIOCHAUVINISM: The prejudice that biological systems have an intrinsic superiority that will always give them a monopoly on self-reproduction and intelligence.
(K. Eric Drexler, Engines of Creation, 1986)

The creator god who sent his four sons into the world.

He wished them to return, but they wanted to stay, and Earth, too, tried to keep them. Sno-Nysoa then used his powers and took his sons back to heaven.

In the morning, when they did not wake up, he said to the Earth: "I have called them home. I leave their bodies with you." Since that time, he has used his power to take man away from the world. The way back is also blocked because of the Earth's attempt to keep the divine children.

Before the quarrel, however, mankind did not know sickness, suffering and death, and they were uncertain what to do now.

The solution they thought of was to send a cat to the medicine-man to obtain a remedy that could cure the sick and awake the dead. The cat successfully obtained the medicine but upon her return she came across a river. Putting the medicine on a tree stump, she took a bath, and subsequently forgot all about her errand.

The humans sent the cat to look for the medicine but she was unable to find it back. The cat then went back to the medicine-man again. He was angry with the cat and said that 'thereafter, though a tree be cut, if the stump remain, the tree will grow again; but when men die, it will be the end.'
"First They Came For The Terrorists..."
by Thom Hartmann

"First they came for the terrorists, but I was not a terrorist, so I did not speak out. Then they came for the enemy combatants, but I was not a combatant, so I did not object. Then they came for the protestors resisting "free speech zones" near presidential campaign rallies, but I was not a protestor and so I only voiced my unease."

If we - and our elected representatives - do not speak out now, loudly and forcefully, it may not be long before they come for the rest of us.

As Russell Kirk wrote in his seminal 1953 book "The Conservative Mind" - the book which inspired a generation of conservatives from Buckley to Goldwater - a "New Society," abandoning the traditional values of America, could easily come into being if "radicals" (such as Bush) were to take over our government and discard the Constitution.

This New Society, Kirk wrote in his chapter "The Promise of Conservatism," would be dominated by "the gratification of a lust for power and the destruction of all ancient political institutions in the interest of the new dominant elites. The great Plan requires that the public be kept constantly in an emotional state closely resembling that of a nation at war; this lacking, obedience and co-operation shrivel..."

The modern institution of civil and human rights, and particularly the writ of habeas corpus, began in June of 1215 when King John was forced by the feudal lords to sign the Magna Carta at Runnymede.

Two of the most critical parts of the Magna Carta were articles 38 and 39, which established the foundation for what is now known as "habeas corpus" laws (literally, "produce the body" from the Latin - meaning, broadly, "let this person go free"), as well as the Fourth through Eighth Amendments of our Constitution and hundreds of other federal and state due process provisions.

Articles 38 and 39 of the Magna Carta said:

"38 In future no official shall place a man on trial upon his own unsupported statement, without producing credible witnesses to the truth of it.

"39 No free man shall be seized or imprisoned, or stripped of his rights or possessions, or outlawed or exiled, or deprived of his standing in any other way, nor will we proceed with force against him, or send others to do so, except by the lawful judgment of his equals or by the law of the land."

AUTOMORPHISM: "Living as art", a sub-movement of transhumanist art where self-transformation and living itself is the medium.

cameras with image inhibitors

A recent patent application from Hewlett-Packard labs describes a system in which digital cameras would be equipped with circuits that could be remotely triggered to blur the face in any images captured by the camera.

The technology would address privacy concerns without resorting to more draconian measures such as banning cameras.

The patent covers technology that would have to be incorporated both into cameras and the "image inhibitor modules" that would signal "No photos of me, please," plus a system for registering inhibitors with cameras. The in-camera technology includes sophisticated image-analysis software to selectively identify faces so they can be obfuscated.

"A method of modifying a captured image of a scene, said method comprising: detecting an inhibit signal emanating from an inhibitor device carried by an object within said image; in response to said inhibit signal, identifying a portion of said image corresponding to said object; and modifying said image of said scene to render the object unidentifiable from the modified image."

The company had no current plans to commercialize the technology.

(via near near future)
pdf: Transhuman Theonarcissism

..... "As an active religion, however, Transhuman Theonarcissism can be said to begin in the 38th century, with the writings of John Mugabe-Lee. Mugabe-Lee taught that one could hope to live forever, with one's powers becoming ever greater, until one was eventually effectively a god.

He believed that one's godlike future self is able to reach back through time to aid one's current self. In his teachings, one's divine future self is the proper object for one's worship, prayers, and petitions.

The religion remained a small cult until the 40th century, when the TL10 technologies for stasis and mind transfer made the goal of eternal life more plausible. Since that time it has grown rapidly and it now counts as a significant religion.

Theonarcissism has been discouraged (and even persecuted) in many parts of the cluster on practical as well as theological grounds" .....
it has earned an estimated £10m, and according to the company selling it, is the most successful ringtone in the world.

Daniel Malmedahl, Erik Wernquist and the The Crazy Frog sound

the most important questions to ask are.... who benefits the most from the crime that was committed on september 11th?

and who is getting all those billions of dollars from WAR contracts and OIL?


Top Ten War Profiteers of 2004


War is a racket.

" I spent 33 years in the Marines. Most of my time being a high-class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer for capitalism."

"I helped purify Nicaragua for the international banking house of Brown Brothers in 1909-1912. I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests in 1914. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenue in. I helped in the rape of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street."
....General Smedley D. Butler, former U.S. Marine Commandant, November 1935

One week after 9/11, Richard Aboulafia, senior military analyst with the aerospace and defence consultancy Teal Group, said the attacks were "all good things for the defence industry".

He was right. In order to bring them onside with the war on terror, Oman, the Philippines, Indonesia, Israel, Egypt, South Korea, Chile and the United Arab Emirates all enjoyed confirmed or approved arms deals specifically because they joined the coalition to support the war in Afghanistan. Even when Tony Blair flew to India for talks with the Indian prime minister following the September 11 attacks, he couldn't help but try to finalise the sale of 60 BAE Systems Hawk fighters, worth £1bn.


Gideon Burrows writes: "Like most people, I remember exactly where I was when I first heard that terrorists had flown aeroplanes into the World Trade Centre and the Pentagon. I was outside a huge arms exhibition in London's Docklands, where 14 Middle Eastern nations were shopping for weapons. While events across the world were cancelled out of respect for the thousands of dead, arms buyers continued doing weapons deals in London for a further three days."

At a glance: the International Arms Trade

guardian arms trade report

Thursday, 27 January 2005

Blair defends plan for house arrest without trial

earlier Home Secretary Charles Clarke said the public would have to trust the authorities to make sensible judgements about its use to justify detentions.

just as we were supposed to trust the authorities who fed us LIES to justify a pre-emptive invasion of iraq.

Tory shadow home secretary David Davis described the house arrest plans as "public internment". He told MPs: "We know that throughout history internment has generally backfired, because of the resentment that it creates, so unless the process is clearly just, the home secretary could find himself confining one known terrorist only to recruit for our enemies 10 unknown terrorists."
Israeli historian and journalist Tom Seger talks to the BBC

"....make no mistake, we do manipulate the Holocaust but we also feel very, very deeply about it....."

Q: Do you think that the legacy of the Holocaust has affected how Israel deals with its current conflicts, including with the Palestinians?

"I feel that Israeli society has not learnt the full humanitarian lesson of the Holocaust as we should and I feel that if we had given more attention to the humanitarian legacy of the Holocaust, we may act differently on the occupied territories......"

Wednesday, 26 January 2005

British soldiers 'ordered to give Iraqis a good kicking'
"World leaders" arrive in the Swiss resort of Davos for the World Economic Forum ...(bbc coverage)

"Another world is possible."

meanwhile the Brazilian city of Porto Alegre will host the rival World Social Forum, bringing together thousands of campaigners against globalisation to set an alternative agenda to that of the Swiss summit.
while america maintains its modern day concentration camp in Guantanano bay, tomorrow is the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz

Tomorrow's ceremonies at Auschwitz and in the nearby city of Krakow kick off a year of events commemorating the 60th anniversary of the end of the second world war. These 12 months will in many respects also be a year of closure since the various events will be the last to be attended by direct witnesses of the war years.

"We are on the brink of that moment when this terrible event will change - from memory to history," Silvan Shalom, the Israeli foreign minister, said in New York on Monday at the UN's first special general assembly session dedicated to recalling the liberation of the Nazi death camps.


homosexuality after the nazi concentration camps were liberated

the liberators didn't offer gay prisoners any justice. the allied judges, who wrote the german constitution after the liberation, determined that the homosexual concentration camp prisoners were criminals, not victims.... not persecuted. these men were therefore forced into silence by the shame of their situation. the feeling of isolation must have been deadening.


Edward Said In His Last Will!
"Just like the Jews are asking the world to acknowledge their tragedy, Rabin and Peres should have been forced to recognize the injustice Israel did to Palestinians, as to achieve justice, and not revenge."

Over 600,000 Palestinians--roughly 40 per cent of the male population of the occupied Palestinian land in the West Bank and Gaza Strip--have spent time in an Israeli jail since 1967. (dominionpaper)
number of Palestinians held by Israeli security forces during the al-Aqsa intifada

jews against zionism
QUIT ...Queers Undermining Israeli Terrorism


"A Problem from Hell" :
America and the Age of Genocide by: Samantha Power
After much research, Samantha Power discovered a pattern: "The United States had never in its history intervened to stop genocide and had in fact rarely even made a point of condemning it as it occurred," she writes in this book.

Debunking the notion that U.S. leaders were unaware of the horrors as they were occurring against Armenians, Jews, Cambodians, Iraqi Kurds, Rwandan Tutsis, and Bosnians during the past century, Power discusses how much was known and when, and argues that much human suffering could have been alleviated through a greater effort by the U.S. She does not claim that the U.S. alone could have prevented such horrors, but does make a convincing case that even a modest effort would have had significant impact.


the vatican during the holocaust?
The former head of the World Jewish Congress claimed in his memoirs that public Vatican records concerning the Nazi Holocaust omit key documents that allegedly shows Pope Pius XII knew of the genocide as early as 1942.

Riegner wrote in his book that as head of the WJC in Geneva during the war he had learned of the Nazi plan to exterminate Jews known as the Final Solution, and then told Washington, London, and the Vatican in telegrams.
((catholic world news)

There were many who helped Jews during World War II and they must be remembered and honoured. At the same time there were others who had knowledge of the genocide being perpetrated against the Jewish people and who failed to speak out. Among these were 'sons and daughters of the Church' who must necessarily include members of the clergy and the hierarchy. Some remained silent because of fear that their words could lead to further loss of life and others remained silent for less noble reasons.
(catholic church in england and wales.)

Missing in the 11 volumes of Vatican archive material published by the Holy See between 1965 and 1981. are the day-to-day records and internal communications--diaries, memoranda, briefing notes, appointment books and minutes of meetings--that would shed light on how Pope Pius and the Vatican arrived at their policy decisions.
(belief net)

in 1940, Swiss Bishop Mario Besson wrote the pope about concentration camps in France and asked for a public appeal by the pontiff. However, there was no documentation about the pope's response.

"There is evidence that the Holy See was well-informed by mid-1942 of the accelerating mass murder of Jews,'' said a report by a commission of three Catholic and three Jewish scholars. The report asked for additional material to help historians determine how this information was received at the Vatican and what attention was given to it.

a 27,000-word article, by Daniel J Goldhagen in American magazine New Republic (2002), accuses the Roman Catholic Church of providing the intellectual stimulus for Nazism and the Holocaust.

For its part, the Vatican has always argued that its cautious, non-confrontational policy saved more people than if it had condemned Nazi excesses from the pulpit.

Dr Goldhagen says such arguments are bizarre and nonsensical, topped only by those revisionist historians who try to argue that the Holocaust didn't happen.

in 2003 The Vatican opens its secret wartime archive in a bid to prove that Pope Pius XII did not turn a blind eye to the Holocaust.

The archives contain thousands of documents on relations between the Holy See and pre-war Germany, but many files from 1931-1944 were destroyed during World War Two when the ambassador's residence in Berlin was bombed.

That includes 1933 when Pacelli signed a controversial concordat with Germany. Hitler said the treaty showed the Vatican was recognising his Nationalist Socialist state, while Pacelli said it showed Hitler would respect Church laws.
The uk home secretary, Charles Clarke, is expected to announce today that he will accept the law lords' ruling that the indefinite detention without trial of 12 terror suspects in Britain breaches human rights laws.

The law lords' judgment was so damning of the anti-terror legislation that one of the panel, Lord Hoffman, went as far as saying: "The real threat to the life of the nation, in the sense of people living in accordance with its traditional laws and political values, comes not from terrorism but from laws like these."

There was speculation last night that the 12 men, who are mostly being held at Belmarsh and Woodhill high security prisons, and most of whom come from north Africa, will be dealt with by a mixture of measures.

At least one is expected to be charged and prosecuted under the terrorism laws, and others may be charged with lesser offences or released on bail under strict monitoring, surveillance and reporting conditions. such a proposal would need a new opt-out for Britain from the European convention on human rights.


new "control orders" would also cover UK citizens.

The proposed changes would mean the home secretary (not a court) could order British citizens to be held under house arrest without putting them on trial.

They, or foreign suspects who cannot be deported, could also face lesser measures such as tagging, curfews, restrictions on their movements or limits on their use of telephones and the internet.
UK's 'forgotten' Guantanamo detainees

As four Britons are finally released from the american concentration camp, Guantanamo Bay, campaigners say Britain should be doing more for the forgotten UK residents still inside.

At least five men who have lived in Britain for years are thought still to be held in the camp in Cuba.

But because Bisher al-Rawi, Jamil al-Banna, Jamal Abdullah, Shaker Abdur-Raheem Aamer and Omar Deghayes did not take British citizenship, the government is not pursuing their cases.

Human rights groups say even without a "consular responsibility" to make representations on their behalf, Britain has a moral responsibility to them.

"If the UK isn't going to make representations on their behalf, who is?"

Amnesty International says there could be more UK residents in Guantanamo - human rights lawyer Clive Stafford Smith believes there are at least seven.


After Guantanamo

Two of the British prisoners who have returned to the UK from Guantanamo Bay reportedly spent 18 months in solitary confinement. What impact does being locked up all day, away from any other human beings, have on an individual's mind?


Isolation, breakdowns and mysterious injections
Feroz Abbasi, one of the four men who returned to Britain yesterday after three years in Guantanamo Bay was kept in isolation for 18 months, guards were removed to deny him any human contact and he was monitored by a remote camera. he suffered a series of mental breakdowns and was repeatedly injected with an unknown substance by his US captors. Three British detainees released last year also said they had been given mystery injections.
The Coronation Viewed from Israel

"Some people say, only half in jest, that the USA is an Israeli colony. And indeed, in many respects it looks like that. President Bush dances to Ariel Sharon's tune. Both Houses of Congress are totally subservient to the Israeli right-wing much more so than the Knesset. It has been said that if the pro-Israeli lobby were to sponsor a resolution on Capitol Hill calling for the abolition of the Ten Commandments, both Houses of Congress would adopt it overwhelmingly. Every year Congress confirms the payment of a massive tribute to Israel."

"But others assert the reverse; that Israel is an American colony. And indeed, that is also true in many respects. It is unthinkable for the Israeli government to refuse a clear-cut request by the President of the United States. America forbids Israel to sell an expensive intelligence-gathering plane to China? Israel cancels the sale. America forbids a large-scale military action, as happened last week in Gaza? No action. America wants the Israeli economy to be managed according to American precepts? No problem: an American (circumcised, to be sure) has just been appointed as Governor of the Central Bank of Israel."

As a matter of fact, both versions are right: The USA is an Israeli colony and Israel is an American colony. The relationship between the two countries is a symbiosis, a term defined by the Oxford Dictionary as "an association of two organisms living attached to each other or one within the other"

.... "A friend of mine asserts that there are two souls residing in the American nation, a good and a bad one. That may be true for every nation, including even Israel and Palestine, but in America it is much more extreme.

There is the America of Thomas Jefferson (even if he liberated his slaves only on his death), Abraham Lincoln, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Dwight Eisenhower, the America of ideals, the Marshall Plan, science and the arts."

"And then there is the America of the genocide perpetrated against the Native Americans, the country of slave traders and the Wild West myth, the America of Hiroshima, of Joe McCarthy, of segregation and of Vietnam, the violent and repressive America."

"During Bush's second term, this second America may reach new depths of ugliness and brutality. It may offer the whole world a model of oppression. I would not want my country, Israel, to be identified with such an America."
Iraq: Torture Continues at Hands of New Government

"The people of Iraq were promised something better than this after the government of Saddam Hussein fell," said Sarah Leah Whitson, executive director of Human Rights Watch's Middle East and North Africa Division. "The Iraqi Interim Government is not keeping its promises to honor and respect basic human rights. Sadly, the Iraqi people continue to suffer from a government that acts with impunity in its treatment of detainees."

Tuesday, 25 January 2005

launderette cam
Self-made objects

Roger Ibars' Self-made objects have lost any interest in interacting with the users and derive pleasure from themselves. Devices interact with their own functions: an alarm clock wakes up itself before waking up you, a selfish keyboard removes all the keys except the ones that tells you its name (qwerty) and a kitchen scale turns itself over and enjoys its own weight.

His "Hard wired devices" connect computer game culture to household objects. For example, 8-bit Nintendo Light guns are wired up to a digital alarm clock, so that you change the settings by firing away.
Street art invades Counter-Strike
the chess variants page

(via gravity lens)
In Praise of Plastic Surgery


the Miss Artificial Beauty competition

Body Modification Ezine


radical surgery
The Supposed Sin of Defying Nature

Why are policy debates still plagued by an irrational idea that refuses to die?

You'd think that any concept of the inviolability of nature would long have been abandoned by philosophers, ethicists and cultural commentators. But sadly it isn't so. Nature's inviolability is still a club to bash any practice or technology that conservatives dislike.

It's like a vampire with a stake through its heart that refuses to die. Choose any of a vast range of "controversial" topics, from gay marriage to genetic enhancement and beyond, and you'll find a few "thinkers" willing to argue that it must be stopped because it defies nature.
Bush seeks extra 80bn for war funds

US costs in Iraq average 4.8 billion dollars a month

The US is running a budget deficit of close to $500bn a year.

Monday, 24 January 2005

the bbc's Country profile: United Kingdom says......

"The British media are free and able to report on all aspects of British life. The variety of publications on sale reflects the full spectrum of political opinion."

Plastics created from orange peel and CO2

US scientists have discovered a way to make plastics from orange peel, using the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide.

Cornell University researchers created a novel polymer, called polylimonene carbonate, using CO2, Limonene an oil present in orange peel, and a catalyst that speeds the reaction along.

"Almost every plastic out there, from the polyester in clothing to the plastics used for food packaging and electronics, goes back to the use of petroleum as a building block," said Professor Coates.

"If you can get away from using oil and instead use readily abundant, renewable and cheap resources, then that's something we need to investigate." The team hopes CO2 could one day be collected for making plastics instead of being pumped into the atmosphere.

Sunday, 23 January 2005

Crispin Hellion Glover's "what is it?"


An essay concerning the subtext of the film by the same title
Robot soldiers bound for Iraq

The US military is planning to deploy robots armed with machine-guns to wage war in Iraq.

Eighteen of the 1m-high robots, equipped with cameras and operated by remote control, are going to Iraq this spring, the Associated Press reports. the robot will rely on its human operator, remotely studying footage from its cameras, for the order to open fire.
another great idea:
bogus ads that can wreck a firm's reputation.

a spoof ad opens with a suicide bomber leaving his home and jumping into his VW Polo. The bomber parks at a busy London restaurant where carefree diners crowd the pavement. Cut to the terrorist sitting in his car as he pushes the button to detonate his bomb. The blast is contained within the car, saving the diners. The ad ends: 'Polo. Small but tough'.

The advert was not made for TV but to be flashed around the world on the internet. Despite the high quality production values, real Volkswagen logo and the free publicity it is attracting around the world, the commercial was not made by the car giant.

'It gives the impression we've condoned or supported it, and is potentially very damaging to Volkswagen. Our legal department is planning an action and we will decide tomorrow.'

heres a link

last year Ford had to distance itself from a viral email showing a cat's head being cut off by a car's sunroof.

lets hope the trend continues

Saturday, 22 January 2005

Old media always tries to stop new media

"When they can't stop it, they try to control it. Then they figure out how to make money and they always make a lot of money."

Rewind to the furore around VCRs when they first came out... Once the courts decided that the VCR in itself was not an illegal technology, the film studios turned it into an extremely lucrative business.

In August 2004, the San Francisco-based US Court of Appeals ruled in favour of Grokster and StreamCast, two file-sharing networks. The court said they were essentially in the same position that Sony was in the 1980s VCR battle, and said that the networks themselves could not be deemed as illegal.

Peer-to-peer (P2P) networks are here to stay, and are on the verge of being exploited by commercial media firms, says a panel of industry experts.

but many net users will continue to ignore the entertainment industry's potential controlling grip on content and P2P technology by continuing to use it for their own creations. "Increasingly, what you are seeing on P2P is consumer-created content," said Derek Broes, from Microsoft.

"File-sharing is the tip of the iceberg."

Friday, 21 January 2005

animal noises for ella
Interactive Autopsy

This is a grassroots skipping movement. The purpose of this website is to explain the many benefits of skipping and to sing the praises of skippers who feel inspired to share the joyful skipping message with others.

We believe that skipping is a simple, yet powerful way to make our communities happier and healthier places and that the world will be a much better place with more skippers on the streets.. That is the spirit with which this website is created! So, shall we skip?
witnessing a forced deportation from australia

"....and then our fellow passenger was on the plane.

Squeezed between two security officers I can only define as goons, the man was handcuffed, with a chain leading to a restraint at his waist, and to cuffs at his ankles. But perhaps the most shocking was the gag. The man had layers of black gaffer tape around his mouth, bound so tightly that it was cutting into his face. Above the tape, his eyes were wildly panicked. They locked on to mine briefly before he was manhandled into the seat, and a blindfold placed over his eyes......"

"....I do not know his name, or where he is from although I can say he is of Middle Eastern origin. All I can do for him is give a glimpse of his story, as I have no idea of what other horrors he has endured. I need to tell this brief chapter of his story as it is also our story. It is a story of what our nation sees as a reasonable measure to protect our borders."
371 Greatest Lines From Television


50 Top Movie Deaths
Online Encyclopedia of Roman Emperors

(via grow a brain)
Redford Kicks Off Sundance on a Political Note

on the same day that President Bush was inaugurated for his second term, the Sundance Film Festival kicked off with a political tone struck by founder Robert Redford, who called independent film a voice of dissent and encouraged movie-makers to speak their minds.

"This is really a festival about different voices in film that really reflect, a little more accurately, the world we live in," Redford said. "I like to think of this festival as a festival of dissent, and I'd like to celebrate that."
Rumsfeld cancels German trip after accusations

The New York-based Centre for Constitutional Rights filed a complaint in December with the Federal German Prosecutor's Office against Rumsfeld accusing him of war crimes and torture.

The organisation alleges violations of German legislation, which outlaws war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide independent of the place of crime or origin of the accused.

Rumsfeld made it known immediately after the complaint was filed that he would not attend the Munich conference unless Germany quashed the legal action, Deutsche Presse-Agentur (dpa) has learned.
Norwegians Confused by Satanic Bush Salute

President Bush gave a "Hook 'em, 'horns" salute (of the University of Texas Longhorns) as he and his family watched the Inaugural Parade yesterday in Washington. in the Nordics when you throw up the right hand with the index and pinky fingers raised it translates as a salute to Satan.

Devil Hand Signals Prevalent Throughout Inauguration

(via what really happened)

Thursday, 20 January 2005

text on things
US right attacks SpongeBob video

US conservative groups are up in arms over a music video featuring children's TV heroes such as the cheerful cartoon character SpongeBob Squarepants.

Focus on the Family and other groups say the video - a remake of the Sister Sledge hit, We Are Family - is a vehicle for pro-gay propaganda.

The video's makers plan to mail it to US schools in the spring to promote tolerance and diversity. but conservatives see the video as a cunning attempt to promote homosexuality.

Nile Rodgers, who wrote the song and is founder of the We Are Family Foundation (WAFF) which released the new video, says "We believe that this is the essential first step to loving thy neighbour," he said. "And the fun and exciting format makes it a lesson that's easy for children to learn."

while Paul Batura, a spokesman for Focus on the Family, told the New York Times."We see the video as an insidious means by which the organisation is manipulating and potentially brainwashing kids,"

WAFF spokesman Mark Barondeso told the newspaper that anyone who thought the video promoted homosexuality "needs to visit their doctor and get their medication increased".


"thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself" ... Jesus considered it to be one of the two MOST IMPORTANT, basic foundational commandments.




The Marriage of Likeness: Same-sex Unions in Pre-modern Europe
by John Boswell
In this book, John Boswell proves beyond dispute that in pagan Antiquity and during Christianity's first millenium, - for around 2000 years - extensive legal sanction was given to pair-bonding between males, and that societies found little difficulty in accepting the concepts that homosexual ties could indeed be family and familiar relationships.

What the Bible Really Says About Homosexuality
by Daniel A. Helminiak
Helminiak, a Roman Catholic priest, has done careful reading in current biblical scholarship about homosexuality. he stresses the need for accurate understanding of what the biblical "facts" are and concludes that "the Bible supplies no real basis for the condemnation of homosexuality."

The Children Are Free: Reexamining the Biblical Evidence on Same-sex Relationships
by Jeff Miner, John Tyler Connoley
the authors argue that gays and lesbians can be found in the Bible and receive sympathetic treatment. they emphasise Jesus' own approach - affirming people over rules - and call for Christians to embrace gay people as good, and part of God's creation.

Wednesday, 19 January 2005

Reuters entertainment news:
"Auschwitz documentary beats Celebrity Big Brother"

viewing figures show that uk Reality TV show "Celebrity Big Brother" has shed 700,000 viewers since the eviction of racing pundit John McCririck, pushing it behind a documentary about the Auschwitz concentration camp.

Four million watched McCririck leave the camera-filled house on Monday, but Tuesday's viewing figures totalled only 3.3 million, while BBC Two's "Auschwitz: The Nazis and 'The Final Solution'" drew 3.9 million, according to unofficial figures.
Chris Parker speaks about suicide attempt

The 21-year-old former soap actor told OK! magazine he slashed his wrists and took an overdose of paracetamol after checking into a London hotel in November last year.

He said he was in a desperate state after a woman claimed he had lied about a relationship to hide that he was gay. He said the gay rumours were false and had made him out to be a liar.

when he checked into a hotel last November with knives and paracetamol: "I got the knives out of my bag straight away and started carving up my wrists. I couldn't do it though, so I got in the bath and tried again. The whole place just looked like a slaughterhouse.

"I was in a lot of pain and I just wanted to pass out. I was in a cycle of sleeping for 20 minutes, puking for 20 minutes and then cutting my wrists for 20 minutes. The room smelled awful because the blood really stank.

"I tried to jump out of the window but was too scared and kept chickening out."

"I'd had such a successful year and I felt as though it was all about to go down the drain," he said.

"I didn't want to have to face anyone the next day or have to pick up the pieces. I just wanted an easy way out - it's a coward's way out but I just wanted out."

He was eventually discovered by two of his friends who found him struggling to breathe after losing four pints of blood.
The Washroom Projects

a unique cross-arts performance project that brings dance, music, live art, fine arts and spoken word to the public toilet.
Global poll slams Bush leadership

On average across all countries, 58% of people - and 16 out of 21 countries polled - said they believed Mr Bush's re-election to the White House made the world more dangerous, in a BBC World Service poll.

Only three countries - India, Poland and the Philippines - out of 21 polled believed the world was now safer.

The survey found that 47% of the 21,953 people questioned now see US influence in the world as largely negative, and view Americans negatively as well.

None of the countries polled supported contributing their troops to Iraq.

PIPA interviewed between 500 and 1,800 people in each of the 21 countries surveyed, plus 1,000 Americans, in face-to-face or telephone interviews. The interviews took place between 15 November 2004 and 5 January 2005.

Turn Your Cheeks On Bush
Hey Emperor - No Clothes!


Hotel journalism is the only phrase for it. More and more Western reporters in Baghdad are reporting from their hotels rather than the streets of Iraq's towns and cities. Hotel journalism gives American troops a free hand as the press shelters indoors.


US Election 2004 Results Listed by Average IQ


Average number of suicides per 100,000 residents in states carried by President Bush in November 2004: 13.5

Average number of suicides per 100,000 residents in states carried by John Kerry in November 2004: 9.9
When celebrities die and then... undie

Changing gender of male celebrities
Spray-On Solar-Power Cells
mute photoblog

Monday, 17 January 2005

Living robots powered by muscle

Tiny robots powered by living muscle have been created by scientists at the University of California, Los Angeles.

The devices were formed by growing rat cells on microscopic silicon chips, the researchers report in the journal Nature Materials.

Less than a millimetre long, the miniscule robots can move themselves without any external source of power.

The work is a dramatic example of the marriage of biotechnology with the tiny world of nanotechnology.

But when biological cells become attached to silicon - are they alive?

"They're absolutely alive," Professor Montemagno told BBC News. "I mean the cells actually grow, multiply and assemble - they form the structure themselves. So the device is alive."
piazza cam
street cam
little nazi dolls (pics)
The Times newspaper, murdoch's "voice of the establishment", dismissed prince Harry's apology as "feeble" and said he had fallen in with "a dubious group of self-indulgent young men who are apparently content with a life of pointless privilege." (insert link to the likes of bryan ferry's son etc)

(The royal fancy dress episode also stirs memories of the royal family's links with the Nazi regime. King Edward VIII, Harry's great-great uncle, was a Nazi sympathiser, while Princess Michael of Kent's father was a Nazi party member.)

plus... innovative attempt to revitalise the public's interest in politics, by subjecting would-be MPs to a Pop Idol-style reality TV show. the winner, Rodney Hylton-Potts, was accused of holding views to the right of the British National Party......

Hylton-Potts, won the competition on the strength of what he calls his 'cabbie's manifesto' - the mandatory castration of paedophiles, the legalisation of all drugs, the repeal of the human rights act, a massive prison-building scheme and an immigrant deportation programme that would reduce Britain's population by 20 million.....

an ITV spokesman defended the programme. "It achieved what it set out to achieve, which was to raise the level of debate about politics and engage people in the process."

"It was watched by a million people every night and tens of thousands of people voted in the final."
Sean Connery's accent is UK favourite ...
... according to 5,000 people questioned

5 MOST POPULAR accents
Sean Connery
Trevor McDonald
Terry Wogan
Hugh Grant
Moira Stuart

Ian Paisley
Billy Connolly
Cilla Black
Paul O'Grady/Lily Savage
Jasper Carrott

The Queen and Scottish comedian Billy Connolly appeared in both the 10 most and 10 least pleasant lists.

The survey also found 59% of people wished they could change their accent - mostly to "standard English", although people from Northern Ireland and Scotland were most proud of their accents.
lavalamp webcam
Vintage Soviet Poster Database

the marsden archive picture library
Deserted farms
(via geisha asobi blog)
Timothy Leary portrait
"In analyzing a news photo of Arnold Schwarzenegger, I think the rules are different...... He takes every opportunity he can to invoke his Hollywood persona, including reusing lines he's spoken and reprising characters he's played.

According to the terms he has established, it is impossible to observe the Governor conduct business and not consider he is also acting. Consequently, the media coverage acquires an added dimension.... I believe it's called a "process shot," in which an actor is filmed in front of a screen on which a background scene is projected."

Americans Against Arnold

(via grow a brain)
When asked why the administration had so far failed to locate Osama Bin Laden, more than three years after the 11 September 2001 attacks on the US, the president responded, "Because he's hiding."

Saturday, 15 January 2005


"the greatest minds of all time now have great bodies to match."

(via gravity lens)
link swarm

my barometer
the blog of death

neural signals
Gay Porn Blog

once i noticedi was on fire i decided to relax and enjoy the fall
reporters without borders
Greg Palast
guerrilla news
Gravity Lens
julie burchill on germaine greer and celebrity big brother.
Mantlepies were asked to write some sketches for Armando Iannucci's end of year TV show, "2004: The Stupid Version"

Here are five that were chosen to go in:
america's "moral guardians"

L Brent Bozell III is the founder and guiding light behind the Parents' Television Council, an offshoot of his Media Research Centre.

His PTC website contains an email form letter that can be filled out in seconds with the name of a tv programme and a description of the offence caused. By clicking a submit button the email is sent to the PTC, which then forwards it to the FCC - the Federal Communications Commission, the government-funded regulatory body headed by Michael Powell, son of the secretary of state, Colin Powell.

The simple technique has had quite an impact. When Mr Powell appeared before Congress in February last year in the wake of Janet Jackson's nipple-baring "wardrobe malfunction" during the Super Bowl, he revealed that indecency complaints to the FCC had risen from 350 in 2001 to 14,000 in 2002, and 240,000 in 2003. The total for last year finally reached more than 1m, although the Super Bowl furore accounted for 540,000 of the complaints registered.

the PTC was responsible for 99.8% of the complaints registered with the FCC in 2003, and an even higher proportion of the complaints received last year.

"It means that really a tiny minority with a very focused political agenda is trying to censor American television and radio," Jonathan Rintels, the president of the Centre for Creative Voices in Media, told Mediaweek magazine, which first reported the findings.

With the FCC able to impose draconian fines of up to $550,000 after last year's Super Bowl nipple, broadcasters are fighting shy of conflict or of even the merest hint of "indecency".

A video of a California man being rescued from a flooded river this week took on a surreal quality when his bare torso was pixilated should it cause offence. And this year the Super Bowl has taken a firm stand against indecency: an advertisement for a cough remedy that features a glimpse of the bare bottom of the veteran entertainer Mickey Rooney has been dropped from the planned schedule by the broadcaster, Fox.
Igigi, Anunnaku and Anu


The collective name for the great gods of heaven. The counterparts of the lesser gods who belong to the Anunnaku.


The Akkadian name for a group of gods of the underworld. They function as judges in the realm of the dead. Their counterparts are the Igigi (although in some texts the positions are reversed). The Anunnaku are the offspring of Anu.


The ancient Sumero-Babylonian god of the firmament, the 'great above', and the son of the first pair of gods, Ansar and Kisar, descendant of Apsu and Tiamat.

He is referred to as "the Father" and "King of the Gods", which signifies his importance in the Mesopotamian pantheon. Not only is he the father of the gods, but also of a great number of demons, whom he sends to humans.

In the Sumerian cosmology there was, first of all, the primeval sea, from which was born the cosmic mountain consisting of heaven, 'An', and earth, 'Ki'. They were separated by Enlil, then Anu carried off the heavens, and Enlil the earth. Anu later retreated more and more into the background. He retires to the upper heavens and leaves the affairs of the universe to Marduk and a younger generation of gods.

His consort was Antu (Anatum), a goddess of creation, but she was later replaced by Ishtar.
Babylon wrecked by war

Troops from the US-led force in Iraq have caused widespread damage and severe contamination to the remains of the ancient city of Babylon, according to a damning report released today by the British Museum.

Babylon, a city renowned for its beauty and its splendour 1,000 years before Europe built anything comparable, was chosen as the site for a US military base in April 2003, just after the invasion of Iraq, despite objections from archaeologists.

John Curtis, keeper of the museum's Ancient Near East department and an authority on Iraq's many archaeological sites, found "substantial damage" on an investigative visit to Babylon last month.

"This is tantamount to establishing a military camp around the Great Pyramid in Egypt or around Stonehenge in Britain," says the report...... (insert link to the military base around stonehenge)

"Outrage is hardly the word, this is just dreadful," said Lord Redesdale, an archaeologist and head of the all-party parliamentary archaeological group. "These are world sites. Not only is what the American forces are doing damaging the archaeology of Iraq, it's actually damaging the cultural heritage of the whole world."

Tim Schadla Hall, reader in public archaeology at the Institute of Archaeology at University College London, said: "In this case we see an international conflict in which the US has failed to take into account the requirements of the Hague convention ... to protect major archaeological sites - just another convention it seems happy to ignore."

Friday, 14 January 2005

supper with the stars
"Imagine having your favourite friends round for dinner. What would really make your party go with a bang? All your guests have arrived, now imagine their surprise when a top TV personality walks in and joins the party!"

(via b3ta)
link swarm

photo friday
daily photo
the mirror project

obsessive consumption
door knobs

coffin cam

random cam
times square
office lloyds

Thursday, 13 January 2005

synthetic biology

A group of MIT engineers wanted to model the biological world. But, damn, some of nature's designs were complicated! So they started rebuilding from the ground up - and gave birth to synthetic biology.

If the notion of hacking DNA sounds like genetic engineering, think again. Genetic engineering generally involves moving a preexisting gene from one organism to another, an activity Endy calls DNA bashing. For all its impressive and profitable results, DNA bashing is hardly creative. Proper engineering, by contrast, means designing what you want to make, analyzing the design to be sure it will work, and then building it from the ground up. And that's what synthetic biology is about: specifying every bit of DNA that goes into an organism to determine its form and function in a controlled, predictable way, like etching a microprocessor or building a bridge. The goal, as Endy puts it, is nothing less than to "reimplement life in a manner of our choosing.".........

.......Within a decade, some hope to create bacteria able to mass-produce drugs that currently have to be painstakingly harvested from rare plants. Others talk about making viruses encased in protein sheaths that can be used to produce fabric with molecular circuitry woven into its warp and weft. In the more distant future, synthetic biologists envision building more complex organisms, like supercoral that sucks carbon out of the biosphere and puts it into building materials, or an acorn programmed to grow into an oak tree - complete with a nifty tree house. And there's the opportunity to add new chromosomes to the human genome, ushering in a panoply of human augmentations and enhancements........ would you package a cd with no artist no tracklisting and no sound any ideas/


Wak is the Ethiopian supreme god. He lives in the clouds and keeps the heavens at a distance from the earth. He is a benefactor god and covered the heavens with stars. The earth was once flat, and Wak asked man to build him a coffin and shut Wak up inside of it. Man did, and Wak buried the coffin. He made fire rain down, which formed the mountains, for seven years. He then sprang forth, completely alive, upon the place where the coffin was buried. He thought he had slept for a short moment, when in reality, it had been years. This is the reason man sleeps during the night and awakens for daytime. Eventually, man got lonely. Wak took some of his own blood and formed a woman for the man to marry. They had thirty children, but were ashamed and hid half of them. Wak became angry and changed the fifteen hidden children into demons and animals
its time to play email roulette
(via popbitch)
popstar porn fan fiction


Busted: How It All Started

"Hi, my name is Mattie Jay, and I will tell you the real story of how Busted came to be......"

Simon Webbe, Ryan Taylor & Johnny B: Sharing Interests

"My name is Johnny B, and I manage a successful boy band. It was during my time with these guys that I discovered the pleasures of dildos......"

Cheryl Tweedy, Lee Ryan & Duncan James: Theme Park Amusement

"I don't like this, it's creepy" Lee Ryan muttered to his boyfriend Duncan as they passed the rides. "Don't be silly, you got me" Dunk reassured him. The two lads made their way to the House of Horrors, allegedly the biggest and scariest ride known to man. "I dunno why I let you talk me into this" Lee grumbled. Duncan put his arm around him and pulled him in close "It's our day off - enjoy it!". Taking a seat, they fastened their belts. Dunk gave Lee a quick kiss as a soothing gesture."Thanks baby" he replied taking Dunk's hand in his. Suddenly Duncan heard a familiar voice behind him."Ooooh......this is supposed to be the scariest ride ever!" a girl with a thick Geordie accent squealed. Dunk looked round to see the girl he had once fancied (and still wouldn't mind shagging) Cheryl Tweedy from Popstars' girl band Girls Aloud........
british Blogger sacked from bookshop job for sounding off

Joe Gordon, 37, worked for Waterstone's in Edinburgh for 11 years but says he was dismissed without warning for "gross misconduct" and "bringing the company into disrepute" through the comments he posted on his weblog.

"The book trade can only exist with freedom of speech and information," he said last night. "It is a big personal blow to me to lose my job and it also has grave implications beyond that - for anybody who works for any company and blogs, which is thousands of people."

The literary world has also spoken out against the sacking. Richard Morgan, the science fiction author, has written a letter of protest to Waterstone's.

"This bears comparison with taking disciplinary action based on private conversations overheard in a pub, and raises some disturbing issues of freedom of speech," he said.

"Waterstone's is, after all, a bookseller, whose stock in trade is the purveying of opinion, not all of it palatable to those concerned. The action that has been taken so far bears more resemblance to the behaviour of an American fast-food chain than a company who deal in intellectual freedoms and the concerns of a pluralist liberal society."

Five years ago, an award-winning advertising campaign for Waterstone's focused on the importance of freedom of speech. One image featured a burned book with the slogan: "Adolf Hitler, Pol Pot & Mao Tse-Tung were right about one thing. The Power of Books."
Blistering attacks threaten Iraq election

While the world's attention has been on the disaster in Asia, the situation in Iraq has deteriorated so much that the insurgency has developed into near-open warfare.

The head of Iraq's intelligence service Gen Muhammad Shahwani now puts the number of insurgents at 200,000, of which 40,000 are said to be the hard core and the rest active supporters.

These figures do not represent an insurgency. They represent a war.

The level of attacks is now so intense and sophisticated that it is not surprising that the former British representative to the former Coalition Authority, Sir Jeremy Greenstock, said recently that the insurgency was "irremediable" and "ineradicable" by US and other foreign troops alone.

"It depends on the Iraqis. We have lost the primary control," he said.

Recent events indicate that Iraqis have lost the primary control as well.


Invaders always say that they come as liberators

"a propaganda poster from World War II, depicts a strapping young SS officer holding a smiling local kid in his arms. "Trust the German soldier," the caption exhorts citizens of occupied France.

But when liberation came in 1945, Frenchmen who had obeyed that poster were shot as collaborators.

instead it was the men and women who resisted, it was the so called "terrorists" who shot German soldiers, cut phone lines and bombed trains, it was they who received medals and pensions.

Invaders always say that they come as liberators, but it's almost never true. Whether you live in Paris or Baghdad or New York, you're expected to know that, and to act accordingly."


Betty Bowers Newsletter for September
"Most Iraqis, I am told, believe that they are "better off" becoming violently ill from drinking filthy water while dodging bullets under the elusive promise of shifting democracy and the inevitable specter of bloody civil war than they were being victimized by the clean water and electricity Saddam Hussein ruthlessly used to curry favor......"

Wednesday, 12 January 2005

Hop Step Junk, by Japanese artist Sei Matsumura, is an installation which catches up people's footstep. According to the difference of their weight and the way they move, the sound of footsteps is turned into rhythm sequences and reflected into visualization.
A list of interactive tables


The Table: Childhood 1984-2001
a fully autonomous robotic table that selects a viewer to attempt a relationship with that person. The table will not interact with everyone who comes into the room; it will choose only one viewer. As long as that visitor stays, he or she will be the object of the table’s attention.
(via near near future)
SOMEONE... (depending on search results perhaps George Bernard Shaw/Napoleon/Marx? ) ...once described religion as "what keeps the poor from killing the rich"
the Human Interface Engineering Laboratory
The Center for the Study of Political Graphics is the largest collection of Post World War II graphics in the United States. It collects, preserves, and exhibits posters relating to historical and contemporary movements for social change.
"Everyman a Rambrandt!"

The UCM museum has a large collection of "PBN's" (Paint By Number) on exhibit at all times.

This genre of painting began when Max Klein of the Palmer Paint Company got together with the artist Dan Robbins and made everyone an artist. The motto of Craft Master, the major paint by number company, was "Everyman a Rambrandt!" By 1954, more than twelve million sets had been sold.
My receipts

he scans and posts every receipt he gets
mac mini
pics of the mac mini


25 innovations of the past 25 years

N Korea wages war on male long hair

Men's hairstyles reflect their 'ideological spirit'

North Korea has launched an intensive media assault on its latest arch enemy - the wrong haircut. A campaign exhorting men to get a proper short-back-and-sides has been aired by state-run Pyongyang television. Men should get a haircut every 15 days, it recommended.

The series is entitled Let us trim our hair in accordance with Socialist lifestyle.

While the campaign has been carried out primarily on television, reports have appeared in North Korean press and radio, urging tidy hairstyles and proper attire.

various state-approved short hairstyles include the "flat-top crew cut," "middle hairstyle," "low hairstyle," and "high hairstyle" - variations from one to five centimetres in length. men aged over 50 are allowed seven centimetres of upper hair to cover balding.

Hair is a "very important issue that shows the people's cultural standards and mental and moral state", argues Minju Choson, a government daily.

A TV series this winter showed hidden-camera style video of "long-haired" men in various locations throughout Pyongyang. the programme gave their names and addresses, and challenged the fashion victims directly over their appearance.

Tuesday, 11 January 2005

Giant telescope could pick up alien TV signals
(via j-walk blog)

Man auctions ad space on forehead

Andrew Fischer, a 20-year-old US man is selling advertising space on his forehead to the highest bidder on website eBay. he said he would have a non-permanent logo or brand name tattooed on his head for 30 days.


rent my chest

human billboards
February 2003 report that the agency, Cunning Stunts, is offering students up to £88.20 a week to wear a corporate logo on their head for a minimum of three hours each day. The brand or product message will be attached by a vegetable dye transfer and the students will be paid to leave the logos untouched.
IBM frees 500 software patents

Computer giant IBM says 500 of its software patents will be released into the open development community.

The move means developers will be able to use the technologies without paying for a licence from the company. IBM described the step as a "new era" in how it dealt with intellectual property and promised further patents would be made freely available.

"We believe that releasing these patents will result in innovation moving more quickly."

"This is about encouraging collaboration and following a model much like academia."

but Florian Mueller, campaign manager of a group lobbying to prevent software patents becoming legal in the European Union,dismissed IBM's move as insubstantial.

"It's just diversionary tactics," wrote Mr Mueller, who leads, in a message on the group's website.

"Let's put this into perspective: We're talking about roughly one percent of IBM's worldwide patent portfolio. They file that number of patents in about a month's time," he added.

IBM was granted 3,248 patents in 2004, more than any other firm in the US, the New York Times reports.

For each of the past 12 years IBM has been granted more US patents than any other company.

IBM has received 25,772 US patents in that period and reportedly has more than 40,000 current patents.
"Common sense is what tells you the world is flat." ...The Principia Discordia
(via Discordian Research Technology)
a digital spy celebrity big brother thread titled.....

"the people in iraq"

its very long, currently up to about post number 90-something. its got nazis, its got song, its got insults hurled at my family.

its a rematch from the previous night's "Is there really any need for people like Kenzie in society, let alone the BB House?"

i'm "biomorph04" and please bear in mind i only type with one finger and can't always keep pace with either my brain or my emotions.

Sunday, 9 January 2005

We're Creative Commonists, Bill

When Bill Gates referred to copyright reformers as modern-day communists in an interview at the Consumer Electronics Show, it didn't take long for the web community to respond with a big "nyah-nyah-nyah."

Bloggers and designers were quick to dream up "creative communist" symbols, a play on one of the best-known groups working for copyright reform, Creative Commons.

proponents of copyright reform say that the comments show just how out-of-touch Gates is with a large and growing community of people who have embraced the ideas of open source and building on one another's creative works.

Creative Commies Fight for the Public Domain!

Saturday, 8 January 2005

the fifth Bloggie awards: nominations

"call now to enter our fantasy world of spin. we'll be anything you want us to be"
Wuragag and Waramurungundi

Wuragag, the first man, according to the Gunwinggu people of Australia, and husband of Waramurungundi.

Waramurungundi, the all-creating mother of Australia; she gave birth to the earth and then fashioned all its living creatures. She then taught her creations to talk and divided each language group from the next.


We can dream too

The day white Australians can look in the mirror and say 'I am Aboriginal' is the day their tormented country will start to heal, argues Germaine Greer.
Museum of Coathangers


The Excelsior... Designed by Rev. Aubrey Moon

The Lancaster Gate... Designed by Gerard Flanders

The Orion 200... Designed by Maureen Tupper

The Mainetti UR20... Designed by Bonsoir Ltd.

The ws-260... Designed by Bingley Associates

The Braitrim RG F38... Designed by Colin Thrush ,,,,,,,,,and many more.
America's Tsunami Media Coverage

According to one professor, American's media coverage has been "great at explaining what a tsunami is. But otherwise I can see why the rest of the world thinks Americans care about death and destruction only when Americans are involved."

(via Utterly Boring)


The publisher of The New York Times announced that the paper will begin adding a "source code" to each story it publishes on paper, or on the internet. The code system will help the reader understand how the story came to be written.

"Walter Cronkite used to end his newscasts on CBS with the phrase: 'And that's the way it is,'" said Times publisher Arthur Ochs Sulzberger, Jr., "But that was a lie. What shows up on TV news or in the paper is a highly-subjective list of stories spawned for a variety of reasons from political to mundane. This new coding system, is just the latest in our ongoing efforts to be transparent and vulnerable with our readers."

Here is initial list of codes which will appear just under each headline to explain how the story came to be:

* RIP= Reporter's Investigative Piece: our reporter came up with this idea, did the research and wrote the story.
* SH= Something Happened: Some event took place and we reacted by writing this story.
* TB= Trial Balloon: person quoted in story is floating an idea to see how our readers will respond.
* SRTRQ= Source Reacts to Reporters Question: source in story was forced to comment on some topic by persistent reporters' questions. Story presented as if source had brought up the subject.
* NRE= News Release Edited: story is little more than a PR news release edited to make you think we did some actual journalism.
* NRU= News Release Unedited: story is verbatim news release. We don't care what you think.
* OFI= Old Friend Idea: a former reporter, now doing PR, planted this story. Reporter 'owed him one'.
* SND=Slow News Day: speaks for itself.
* WUS= Watch Unnamed Source: Anonymous source in story is same as named source, speaking on "background" (see also TB, above)
* DBI= Drinking Buddy Idea: speaks for itself.
* TDI=Top Down Idea: someone in corporate headquarters emailed an editor and asked, "When's the last time we did a story on...?"
* SI=Stolen Idea: some other news organization just did a piece on this, and we were caught with our pants down. Now, we're trying to appear to be more 'in-depth' than them on the topic.
* AI=Astrologer Idea: the paper's 'advisor' said it would be a good day for such a story.
* TT=Thesis Theme: story is shorter version of reporter's doctoral thesis, and he can't wait to get that Ph.D. so he can get into academia and teach journalism instead of being faced with the daily grind of cranking out garbage that no one reads.


The Brownshirting of America
A country in which 42% of the population is totally misinformed is not a country where democracy is safe. By substituting fiction for reality, the US media took the country to war. Today there is no one to correct a lie once it is told. The media, thanks to Republicans, has been concentrated in few hands, and they are not the hands of newsmen. Corporate values rule. If lies sell, sell them. If listeners, viewers, and readers want confirmation of their resentments and beliefs, give it to them. Objectivity turns listeners off and is a money loser.