Just a bunch of uniters, is what they are.

G.O.P. Deserts One of Its Own for Lieberman - New York Times:
Facing Senator Joseph I. Lieberman’s independent candidacy, Republican officials at the state and national level have made the extraordinary decision to abandon their official candidate, and some are actively working to help Mr. Lieberman win in November.

Technorati Tags:

Quaint, is what this is.

The Rise of Shrinking-Vacation Syndrome - New York Times:
Shrinking-vacation syndrome has gotten so bad that at least one major American company, the accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers, has taken to shutting down its entire national operation twice a year to ensure that people stop working — for about 10 days over Christmas, and 5 days or so around the Fourth of July.
I used to work for a company, back in the far distant past, that closed all its factories, which were numerous (although not all at the same time) for two weeks every summer. During “Standard Vacation,” only maintenance crews worked. After ten years, I think it was, employees got a third vacation week which they could take whenever they wished.

I never heard anybody complain much about this arrangement. It was considered an occasion for much celebration, in fact, with each factory (we're talking quaint here, right?) electing a “vacation queen” and putting stickers bearing her photo on their cars, and spending much of the following week or so telling stories about where they'd gone. The title “who drove farthest” was much sought after.

That's something I don't imagine they'll be debating much at PricewaterhouseCoopers this year.

Technorati Tags:

I don't know, dude, all we have in front of our city hall is a farmers market once a week.

SAN FRANCISCO / Exotic dancers rally at City Hall to halt private-room ban in clubs:
The rally more closely resembled a block party than a protest, with a couple of clowns walking around on stilts, rappers entertaining the crowd and scantily dressed protesters dancing to music pumped through two speakers. And free ice cream.
I never heard of them giving out free ice cream, either.

Technorati Tags:

And that's the Lebanese government they're talking about.

With speed, Hezbollah picks up the shovel - The Boston Globe:
Lebanon's government is still talking about its own reconstruction plan, but Hezbollah has already flexed its organizational muscle to deploy heavy machinery, hundreds of engineers, and thousands of workers across the country, spending hundreds of thousands of dollars, and in the process leaving the government looking flat-footed.
Not this crowd.

Meanwhile, in New Orleans...

My Way News - Who's to Blame for State of New Orleans?:
...things are moving agonizingly slow. Piles of debris and wrecked cars are everywhere, and astonishingly, searchers were still finding bodies in ruined homes just weeks ago. Harried recovery officials say it's only been a year. How much can you expect?
How much, indeed.

Maybe if DOOFUS and his gang have a rebuilding urge they ought to take another look at the Gulf Coast. Not to mention Iraq, more's the pity. And leave Lebanon to the “bad guys.”

Technorati Tags:


Blogger has been pretty much munged all day, not to mention a big part of yesterday. Which is probably just as well because I need to go to the grocery store.
An engineer has been notified and will investigate.

Technorati Tags:

What, these guys never heard of filling them with water and dropping them out of windows?

Making condoms stylish for everyone - Yahoo! News:
“There's a great need to de-stigmatize condoms around the world, especially in Africa,” said Franck DeRose, executive director of The Condom Project, which aims to get people comfortable about condoms, especially those living in countries where the little piece of latex is considered taboo.

To do that, the project has a program that gets people making their own condom art pin. It all starts with a craft table, packaged condoms, scraps of colored paper, candy and other double-sided tape.
Where did they go to school, anyway?

Technorati Tags:

There's got to be a joke of some sort in here...

The Sun - CNHI Site Group:
Judge Gets 4 Years for Exposing Himself
...but I don't want to even think about what it is.

Technorati Tags:

A civil war is one thing but $5.00/gal. for gas is something else.

Iraq faces fuel crisis amid the violence | IndyStar.com :
A gallon of gasoline now sells on the black market in Baghdad for about $4.92, although the official price is 64 cents a gallon. Lines of cars at many Baghdad fuel stations stretch for several miles, and drivers sometime wait overnight to fill up their cars.

Technorati Tags:


How about we work a trade?

U.S. Hopes to Rival Hezbollah With Rebuilding Effort - Los Angeles Times:
U.S. officials and private experts agree that the administration faces an uphill effort trying to outdo Hezbollah, which has a broad local base, well-developed social service programs and the confidence of many Lebanese.
We fix Lebanon, Hezbollah can come over here and fix New Orleans.

Hey. The business about paying for the bombs and then paying to fix the damage is no big deal - we're getting to be old hands at that. Or paying Haliburton and Bechtel, at least. For something.

But shouldn't we really finish Afghanistan first? Or how about Iraq? Or maybe the Gulf freakin' Coast.

Look, I'd settle for looney here but these guys are way, way, way beyond that.

And how many ways have I spelled “Hezbollah” now, I wonder.

Technorati Tags:

Vermont girds for fishmeal cake attack.

Burlington Free Press.com | Local/Vermont
The bait -- more than 215,000 fishmeal cakes containing oral vaccine -- will be dropped from a twin-engine plane flying at 500 feet. The plane will fly in a uniform grid pattern along lines about one-third-mile apart.
Woohoo! I've been wanting to use that word, “girds,” for years! I guess it's kind of gone out of style now but for a while there everybody was girding for something, remember that? Or maybe it was just my imagination. No, I'm pretty sure.

Anyway, I've never heard of this being done around here. We have a lot of raccoons here, too, and we're not that far from Vermont. Squirrels, too. Although, now that I think of it, this year we have either fewer skunks or better drivers, it seems.

Technorati Tags:

It's uglier, but it looks more like me.

That's actually sort of depressing when I think about it. But it's true. So I won't think about it, is all.

I went to the DMV this morning to get a replacement drivers license. My old one, which was still good for another 18 months or so, had a picture on it so old it no longer looked at all like me. Since it was taken, in addition to aging maybe eight years, I had cut off all my hair, grown a beard, and changed glasses. In the movies that would be called a disguise. When it was necessary to show my license to someone - say, to cash checks - people would look at it and say “whoa, that doesn't look at all like you.” And then go ahead and cash the check - but still, that didn't seem like a really ideal thing for people to be saying when you were showing them a photo ID. I was thinking, what if one of these days I fall into the clutches of an overzealous red state cop. I figured maybe it was worth the 20 bucks to get it fixed.

Right now I have a temp ID; the real one will arrive in the mail next week. The temp photo is black-and-white; the real one will be color. Maybe the color will help. I mean, a guy can hope. It really is an ugly picture.

And it really does look more like me.

Technorati Tags:

Screw it™ is what I say.

Let's be careful out there!; - The Boston Globe

Technorati Tags:

So maybe it's not Stephen King after all. Maybe it's just Maine.

'Hybrid Mutant' Found Dead in Maine - AOL News:
People from Litchfield, Sabattus, Greene, Turner, Lewiston and Auburn have come forward to speak of a mystery monster that roams the woods. Nobody knows for sure what it is, and theories have ranged from a hyena or dingo to a fisher or coydog, an offspring of a coyote and a wild dog.
Things are just plain weird up there.
Michelle O'Donnell of Turner spotted the animal near her yard about a week before it was killed. She called it a “hybrid mutant of something.”

“It was evil, evil looking. And it had a horrible stench I will never forget,” she told the Sun Journal of Lewiston.

Technorati Tags:

Maybe we should hope this idea doesn't catch on.

Airlines set to sue for £300m over terror losses - Law - Times Online:
AIRLINES including Ryanair are considering suing the Government for up to £300 million to recover the losses incurred since extra security measures were imposed last week.

Technorati Tags:

Meanwhile, while we were watching last week's war....

7 Killed as Full-Scale Sectarian Fighting Rages in Baghdad - New York Times:
Pentagon statistics show that the number of roadside bombs in Iraq rose to 2,625 exploded or found in July, the highest total of the war. And Iraqi government figures released this week said that nearly 3,500 civilians were killed in July — a death toll nearly double the count in January.

Technorati Tags:

Sort of like looking in a mirror, isn't it?

Guardian Unlimited | Special reports | Kurds flee homes as Iran shells Iraq's northern frontier:
Frustrated by the reluctance of the US and the government in Baghdad to crack down on the PKK bases inside Iraq, Turkish generals have hinted they are considering a large-scale military operation across the border. They are said to be sharing intelligence about Kurdish rebel movements with their Iranian counterparts.

Technorati Tags:


Not to worry, though...

Techtree.com India > News > General > Apple Chases Pod for iPod's Sake:
According to reports, Apple has sent “cease-and-desist” letters to companies that are using in any way, “Pod” as part of their names or products. So far, letters have been received by two companies, including Mach5products which makes Profit Pod, and the other company named TightPod.
Pod People will be grandfathered in.

Technorati Tags:

Had second thoughts.

Employer advises Dumpster-diving for axed workers:
Northwest spokesman Roman Blahoski said some employees who received the handbook had taken issue with a couple of the items. “We agree that some of these suggestions and tips ... were a bit insensitive,” Blahoski told Reuters.
So there's another employee benefit down the drain. Or, well, in the Dumpster, I guess.

Technorati Tags:

Well at least it's something new.

VIDEO: Anti-Suicide Bomber PSA Airing In Iraq... | The Huffington Post

Technorati Tags:

No word yet if submarine itself plans to join.

After six decades, a submarine's fate may surface - The Boston Globe

Technorati Tags:

Oh. From Vermont.

Airliner diverted to Logan amid fears over Vt. passenger - The Boston Globe:
Local stations and national cable television networks interrupted regular programming for live coverage. Early reports based on law enforcement sources said Mayo was carrying a note mentioning Al Qaeda, but the reports were later found to be false. Authorities said a search found that she was carrying a Phillips-head screwdriver, hand lotion, and matches. Only the matches are permitted in carry-on baggage.
Well that explains everything then. You've gotta watch those Vermont women, no telling what they'll be up to next.

I don't understand, though, quite, why matches are allowed but hand lotion's not. Maybe the screwdriver. But on the other hand, if something goes wrong with your airplane a Vermont woman with a screwdriver is probably just the thing you need.

And another thing I don't understand. Why is it when they have an airplane they think is too dangerous to land in, like, Washington, they send it to Boston instead? Maybe it's for the chowda or something, I don't know. But if I lived in Boston I wouldn't be all happy about that.

Technorati Tags: ,

Who freakin' knew?

So every once in a while when I'm at CVS I think to myself, “Dude, you need soap. Pretty badly, in fact.” And I go roaming up and down the aisles like some lost soul, wandering for eternity, and I never find it. Eventually I go to the grocery store. Why go to the grocery store for soap? you may ask. Because they have it there, is why.

But today I figured out they have it at CVS too. Only it's not called soap any more. It's called bath and body care. When did that happen, and why didn't somebody tell me? And I don't need “bath soap,” I need something called “Icy Blast.” WTF? It's OK for August, I guess, but what about February? Maybe by February they will be calling it “Hot Chocolate.” Or something. Anything but “Icy Blast.”

Is that too much to hope for, Bunky?

Technorati Tags:

“Stalingrad” is pushing the envelope a bit...

The Day After / How we suffered a knockout - Haaretz - Israel News
When the largest and strongest army in the Middle East clashes for more than two weeks with 50 Hezbollah fighters in Bint Jbail and does not bring them to their knees, the commanders are left with no choice but to point to the number of dead fighters the enemy has left behind. It can be assumed that Bint Jbail will turn into a symbol of the second Lebanon war. For the Hezbollah fighters it will be remembered as their Stalingrad, and for us it will be a painful reminder of the IDF's defeat.
...but they don't make 'em the way they used to anyway. And while I'm not familiar with the author of this piece his position on the Lebanon affair is by no means a lonely one. It's clear from reading the Israeli press that the Israelis themselves are a whole lot less thrilled by its outcome than DOOFUS is. Or claims to be.

Technorati Tags:

There may be hope for Ohio yet.

For the GOP, a Heartland Plunge:
I had dinner one night with a group of Ohio Republicans, all with many years of experience in state politics and none directly engaged in this year's gubernatorial race. One of them said, “I'm afraid this could be another 1982,” a year when recession pushed unemployment to 15 percent and cost the Republicans the governorship. Another said, “I'd settle right now for another 1982. I'm afraid it will be another 1974,” the year of the Watergate election, when Democrats swept everything in sight.


AlterNet: Abolish the TSA, Save Lives:
The TSA has been a farce from its inception. It exists not to prevent terrorists from bringing down a plane but to prevent passengers from realizing the government can do little to thwart such a catastrophe. Rep. Christopher Cox, R-Calif., was chairman of the Homeland Security Committee in May 2005 when he explained why the TSA squandered $4.5 billion on malfunctioning equipment; he also inadvertently admitted that the agency is merely window-dressing for the Feds: “After 9/11, we had to show how committed we were by spending hugely greater amounts of money than ever before, as rapidly as possible.”

Not really, no.

Remarks by the President at Lynn Swann for Governor Reception:
Isn't it interesting today that the most violent parts of the world are where young democracies are trying to take root? Isn't it interesting that Hezbollah would attack Israel, a democracy in the heart of the Middle East, try to destabilize the Middle East so that Lebanon doesn't get to be a strong democracy and starts to try to turn the world against Israel? Isn't it interesting that the young democracy of Iraq is the place where the enemy is trying to stop the progress?
That's Dubya talking, advancing his “their ideology hates our ideology” meme. I say, fine. If that's all it is why don't we just let the two ideologies fight it out and the rest of us can stay home and take a nap.

(I wouldn't advise actually reading this speech unless you have a good supply of asprin on hand, although you might get a laugh from the story of how Elvis won WWII. Everybody else did:
You might remember I recently went down to Graceland -- that's Elvis's place -- with the Prime Minister of Japan. Wasn't that interesting? (Laughter.) I thought it was. (Laughter.) More importantly, my guest thought it was. He was an Elvis fan. I bet you, in 1949, 1950, if somebody had stood up and said, you know, I bet one of these days an American President is going to take the Japanese Prime Minister to visit the heartland, they'd have said, man, you are nuts. (Laughter.)
Maybe there's a football player joke in there somewhere and I just missed it.)

Speaking of memes - I mentioned memes a minute ago, didn't I? - there's another one making the rounds these days that's driving me bonkers.

Highway Safety Agency Unveils New Campaign Against Drunken Driving - New York Times:
“We’re taking the gloves off on drunk driving,’’ Nicole R. Nason, the [National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's] administrator, said in a telephone interview.
Here's the thing, Bunky. Gloves are to protect the fighter's hands, not to protect the guy who gets punched. In fact, wearing gloves allows the boxer to punch harder. So if they really mean to get tough on drunk drivers they should be putting the gloves on, not taking them off.

Also they wouldn't leave fingerprints that way.

Technorati Tags: ,


Sectarian violence operations! Woohoo!

Tony Snow: No Civil War in Iraq -- and He Disputes 'NYT' Report on Bush's 'Frustration'
As for the upsurge in brutal killings and bombings that left more than 3,400 civilians dead last month, Snow characterized this as “a number of sectarian violence operations going on.”
So is that covered under Medicare?

Technorati Tags:

“Not pretty” might be, in fact, the prettiest thing that can be said.

Pentagon studying its war errors - The Boston Globe:
This summer, high-level Pentagon officials ordered a pair of secret studies to pinpoint the military's failures in the two conflicts, and, according to one of the authors, “the results won't be pretty” when the findings are produced this fall. Last week, the Defense Department invited about 50 of the nation's top counter insurgency specialists to a closed-door meeting outside Washington to critique recent operations and chart a way forward.

Technorati Tags:

There'll always be a Wales.

My Way News:
Officials had translated the command “cyclists dismount” from English into Welsh for the sign between Penarth and the capital Cardiff.

However, the result had been the baffling phrase: “Llid y bledren dymchwelyd” which roughly translates as “bladder inflammation overturn.”

Technorati Tags:

Best headline ever?

My Way News:
Man drinks potion for good luck: doesn't get any

Technorati Tags:

So who was it that was talking about Nikes and iPods a while ago?

My Way News:
This fall, the 43-year-old long distance runner will tackle one marathon a day for 50 consecutive days, running a total 1,310 miles in 50 days. And for each 26.2-mile race, Karnazes and his family of four will travel to a different U.S. state.
This guy could listen to Moby Dick. Twice.

Technorati Tags:

Yeah, well, you wouldn't expect anything intelligent from these guys, would you?

The Raw Story | VIDEO: Over 11,000 gays discharged from military in 10 years:
Ian Finkenbinder is an Army soldier with the uncommon ability to translate Arabic. Because of his top secret status, Finkenbinder could translate high security information such as weapons cache locations, insurgent headquarters, and other sensitive intelligence. Yet he was discharged from the Army when his commander learned that he was gay.
I didn't think so.

Technorati Tags:

Just a bunch of ingrates, those Iraqis.

Bush Said to Be Frustrated by Level of Public Support in Iraq - New York Times:
More generally, the participants said, the president expressed frustration that Iraqis had not come to appreciate the sacrifices the United States had made in Iraq, and was puzzled as to how a recent anti-American rally in support of Hezbollah in Baghdad could draw such a large crowd. “I do think he was frustrated about why 10,000 Shiites would go into the streets and demonstrate against the United States,” said another person who attended.
After all we've done.

Technorati Tags:


But how safe is safer, one might ask. If not safe, that is.

Bush: America Safer, But Not Yet Safe, President Warns U.S. Could Be Fighting Terrorists For Years To Come - CBS News:
The president hailed the disruption last week of the plot to blow up U.S.-bound airliners with liquid explosives. He said because of the counterterrorism efforts of the United States and its allies, “America is safer than it has been, yet it is not yet safe.”
I get the part about years to come. It's the safe part I'm confused about. Or safer. Whatever.

Also the looming part, as in “safety looms as a major issue in the midterm elections.” I get that part too.

Technorati Tags:

Hey, come on. Let's not be so hard on Camus.

Crooks and Liars » Bush, Camus, and ‘The Stranger’:
On his summer vacation in Crawford, Texas, George Bush read Albert Camus’ novel The Stranger. I’m not sure what to make of this. It’s usually college freshmen who suddenly take up the French existentialist’s slim volume, and then usually to impress some literature major with wavy hair.
Reading Camus on the beach is a perfect way to pick up girls! Isn't it? I mean.... Oh. Well. I thought....

No! Wait. I met a girl like that once. Of course she was an English major, that's true. But still. Hey, it was a short vacation. And anyway it might have been Henry James. Not the girl, I mean. The book. Or some guy like that.

So let's lighten up on Camus a little, OK? If a guy wants to pick up a girl on his vacation or something, that's fine with me.

Technorati Tags:

This guy might be wrong, of course, but given his credentials seems worth a read.

Craig Murray - The UK Terror plot: what's really going on?:
None of the alleged terrorists had made a bomb. None had bought a plane ticket. Many did not even have passports, which given the efficiency of the UK Passport Agency would mean they couldn't be a plane bomber for quite some time.

Similar analysis has been filtering in from other sources. My own guess would be that if it weren't an election year in the US this story would already have thinned to near invisibility, much like that of the kids in Florida who planned to blow up Sears Tower (you forgot that one already, didn't you?) and more others than I can, well, remember myself.

This is the time honored “cracking down on prostitution” gambit advanced on the eve of municipal elections writ large. And not, I suspect, much more.

Technorati Tags:

Don't want no confusion, is the thing.

My Way News - Report: X-Rays Don't Detect Explosives:
TSA spokeswoman Yolanda Clark said putting shoes on the X-ray machines makes the screening process more efficient and eliminates confusion. “We do not have a specific threat regarding shoes,” Clark said. “In an abundance of caution we require all shoes to be removed and X-rayed to mitigate a variety of threats,” such as potential weapons.
Especially, confusion about who's protecting fliers from those scary guys under the bed.

(Photo: Keystone Kops via Wikipedia.)

Technorati Tags:


People “radicalizing themselves” over the Internet, Chertoff tells NPR.

Clearly at the end of the day, we've got to eliminate that pool of people who are susceptible to becoming killers.
This is really not the kind of thing we want to hear.

Technorati Tags:

Which is your problem right there, Kip.

WSJ.com - Which Travelers Have 'Hostile Intent'? Biometric Device May Have the Answer:
To date, the TSA has more confidence in people than machines to detect suspicious behavior. A small program now is using screening officers to watch travelers for suspicious behavior. “It may be the only thing I know of that favors the human solution instead of technology,” says TSA chief Kip Hawley.
And who's named Kip, anyway. That's worse than Mitt. I wonder what they called him in school. Kipper?

Technorati Tags:


The Raw Story | Poll: Christians 'addicted to pornography':
Additionally, 60% of the women who answered the survey confessed having “significant struggles with lust.” 40% admitted to being “involved in sexual sin” in the past year.
Maybe I should start going to church.

Technorati Tags:

Charisma arts!

“Charm school” helps men perfect the pick-up - Yahoo! News:
When is not the only man with crippling fears when it comes
to chatting up women. That's why Charm School, run by an Ann
Arbor, Michigan-based company called Charisma Arts, has no
problem finding men who need intense guidance and fieldwork
approaching women at places like bookstores and bars.
OK, hey, I'm no expert here, I'm just making a wild guess, but I'd say the first charismatically artful thing to do is stay the hell away from any place called the “Hotel Gansevoort.”

Technorati Tags:

Thank you, Pamela Tanner of Ottawa.

TheStar.com - Ottawa mother rattles U.S. race:
Suddenly, an obscure party primary with no national profile has become one of the hottest, dirtiest and most litigious political races in the United States.

For that, one can thank Pamela Tanner of Ottawa.

Technorati Tags:

OK, so here's the deal.

Today we got a ceasefire, tomorrow I'll get organized.

Seems more symmetrical that way, doesn't it?

Technorati Tags:

Yada, yada, Reuters printed a screwed up picture, and so forth.

In Wars, Quest for Media Balance Is Also a Battlefield - New York Times:
“Even though the pictures are side by side, there’s a kind of aesthetic balance, not necessarily an ideological one,” Mr. Stengel said. “It’s not about taking sides, but about the terrible poignancy for people on both sides.”
Aesthetics. And there you go. (Not to be too hard on Reuters, Stengel works for Time.)

Look. There are pictures of wars painted on the walls of caves. The urge to illustrate war is timeless. And illustrations are more than just facts. They convey emotion and point of view, photographs more than most for their immediacy and presumed realism. Look at the photos from the Crimean War - probably the first war ever seriously photographed - or the U.S Civil War. Look at Robert Capa's photos from Normandy. Look at Vietnam.

Nobody expects the cave paintings to be journalistically accurate, and if you expect it from the pictures you see on TV you're nuts. There are 48.7 bazillion ways TV stories, intentionally or not, depart from reality.

None of which is to apologize for Reuters or, more to the point, for the photographer who supplied the doctored photos (apparently he altered two). It's just no surprise, is all, and nothing to dissolve over. Photojournalism has always had a lot of “if” in it (read Flags of Our Fathers for one well-known example). The advent of digital cameras, laptop computers, and satellite uplinks make it iffier. I doubt if there's a war photographer working today that hasn't “photoshopped” a photo, if only to the extent of cropping it or punching up the focus a little or maybe, just maybe, a wee bit of retouching on the General's nose. It's unrealistic to think otherwise and even more unrealistic to think photo editors will catch every tweak, much less care.

We do need ethical photographers, and ethical editors, and ethical writers, and ethical anchorbimbos on TV (don't hold your breath on that last one, I'm just saying here). But most of all we need intelligent consumers of news.

Let's work on that one, OK?

Technorati Tags:

Gotta love those Brits.

News Dissector Blog » Questioning the UK Terror Plot:
As for the imminence of the suspected dastardly deeds, a British policemen in the know now uses one rather quaint word to allay our fears that this bigger than 911 airplane scenario was slated for this week. He said, quoting now, “RUBBISH.”

Technorati Tags:

Success is a bitch.

USATODAY.com - Blasts rock Shiite area, killing 47:
“Terrorists are in a critical state because they realize the security plan is succeeding. So they have begun targeting innocent people anywhere and randomly,” he said.
No! It's not Cheney this time! It's a mouthpiece for the Iraqi Defense Ministry, some guy named Mohammed Rove Askari.

So finally they're learning how to do things the American way.

Technorati Tags:

If I were Putin today...

J'lem expects cease-fire deal to fail | Jerusalem Post:
Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni said that the cease-fire included a clause allowing an international force to be given expanded powers if the agreement were violated. Livni spoke late Sunday with US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and French Foreign Minister Phillipe Douste-Blazy and told them how important it was for Israel that both sides be held to the agreement. A joint Foreign and Defense Ministry delegation to Russia on Monday will deliver a similar message and will complain about Russian-made missiles that downed an Israeli helicopter on Saturday.
...the first thing I'd do is pledge 50,000 troops to the UNFIL force in Lebanon.

And then just sit back and laugh.

Technorati Tags:

Wait a minute. Haven't we been here before?

Guardian Unlimited | Special reports | Pakistan says 'ringleader' admits link with al-Qaida:
Tasneem Aslam, the Pakistan foreign ministry spokeswoman, told the Guardian last night that information from Mr Rauf had led to last week's arrests in Britain, which included his brother Tayib, and confirmed that the plot was believed to have originated with “al-Qaida based in Afghanistan”.
Dude, if just one word of that is true it's the most incredibly depressing thing you'll hear all week. Or at least for the next hour or two. The word, of course, is “Afghanistan.”

Because if that word's true then all this sound and fury, death and destruction, has got us exactly nowhere, hasn't it? There are still al-Qaida in Afghanistan, plotting to blow up airplanes. Five years of almost indescribable carnage visited upon Afghanistan and the Middle East, five years of Neocon wet dreams, And here we are again. Fuck.

And by the way, Guardian, what's with the period outside the quotation mark? Is that some sort of weird Brit thing I've just noticed or is it Monday there too?

Technorati Tags:


Re-live the glory years.

First ancient radio shows (below), now ancient computer operating systems. And a couple of new ones too. Beginning with the first Macintosh, introduced in January, 1984, a visual history of computer OS displays.

My first computer, of course, isn't even on the list, having been pre-DOS and having been a command-line system anyway, which hardly counts. But, what is generally unknown - and revealed here to an international audience for the first time ever - I am the guy who bought Windows 1.0. I hesitate to admit it, but it's true.

My first Mac was System 7, which also now seems a long and exceeding ugly time ago.

The pictures aren't large enough to experience the full, gut-wrenching horror, but still they're kind of fun to see.

Technorati Tags:

Can't get much scarier than this.

Mike the Mad Biologist:
“America Threatened By Imminent Attack of Chanel Lip Gloss”

Technorati Tags:

Places that have been attacked by terrorists while we've been “fighting them” in Iraq.

Firedoglake - Firedoglake weblog » Tell It Like It Is :
India, Morocco, Turkey, Afghanistan, Indonesia, Somalia, Spain, Great Britain

Technorati Tags:

Wink, wink.

Israel Asks U.S. to Ship Rockets With Wide Blast:
The United States had approved the sale of M-26’s to Israel some time ago, but the weapons had not yet been delivered when the crisis in Lebanon erupted. If the shipment is approved, Israel may be told that it must be especially careful about firing the rockets into populated areas, the senior official said.

Technorati Tags:

Monument to a lost art.

OTR.Network Library (The Old Time Radio Network)
Radio drama. e notes this eye-popping collection. Probably ear-popping too.

It'd mean reinstalling that pesky Real Audio thing again, but it might be worth a try.

Technorati Tags:

What is this, Comedy Sunday?

I'm not aware that the president's ever tried to frighten anybody,” Tony Snowjob tells O'Reilly.

And right there on the same page (when I looked at it, at least) is an ad for PollingPoint that queries, “Is Fox News Really Fair and Balanced”?

Guys! Stop! You're killing me!

Technorati Tags:

The difference between our bombers and their bombers...

Judge orders online sale of Unabomber goods | Tech&Sci | Technology | Reuters.com:
Other personal items, which were seized in a 1996 raid of Kaczynski's cabin, on the block will be hand tools, shovels, saw blades, knives, bows and arrows, axes, clothing, typewriters and a briefcase containing his degrees from the University of Michigan.

Burrell also ordered some 200 books -- with titles ranging from “Stalking the Wild Asparagus” to “Axiomatization of the Theory of Relativity” -- to be sold.
...is theirs get virgins, ours get eBay. One difference, anyway. Or so it seems. And tell me, who wouldn't be happy to have Kaczynski's diplomas hanging in the den? Although, I don't know, “Stalking the Wild Asparagus” sounds a little over the top to me. What are we gonna have now, a rash of copycat stalking?

But no weapons or bomb making equipment, says the judge. So that's sort of like, well, maybe not entirely virgins, I guess.

Technorati Tags:

A very cool new word!

Israeli helicopter prangs in south Lebanon
Well, new to me. “Prang.” Turns out, it's in my dictionary. Crash, as in a motor vehicle or airplane. Brit slang.

Gotta love those Brits.

Technorati Tags:

Seems perfectly obvious to me.

BP allowed to keep using part of oil field:
Exxon Mobil Corp. and ConocoPhillips, BP's partners in the Prudhoe Bay field, have declared a force majeure on oil deliveries from the field. Force majeure allows companies to avoid penalties for failing to fulfill contracts because of unforeseen events.
Look, if you don't inspect the pipes then when the pipes fail it's unforseen!

Technorati Tags: