Explosions in the sky


Posted in Music. 2 Comments »

digby helps to trim the sails

The inimitable digby takes down Chris Matthews and a number of tabloid journalists for their fear of women and ignorant banter about what other people mean. Hat-tip Glenn Greenwald.

How does someone live to be 120 years old?

Fulla Nayak

Fulla Nayak, 120. With her family, on the right. Her 92 year old daugher lives with her, as does her 72 year old grandson.

John Conyers will uphold the constitution

Support the troops

Bring them home.

Via Shakes.

Good night to be


Good night to you

Via Creature.

Pelosi in ’07

Maha has t-shirts.

Tommy, can you hear me?

Imagine peace

Here. I guess it’s skippy’s day today.

Iraq is not our colony, let it go

Holy Shiite, Batman!

BAGHDAD, Iraq — In perhaps the boldest and most sophisticated attack in four years of warfare, gunmen speaking English, wearing U.S. military uniforms and carrying American weapons abducted four U.S. soldiers last week at the provincial headquarters in the Shiite holy city of Karbala and then shot them to death.

AP, via skippy.

Music is language, handwritten and spelled

skippy had it, watch and listen how a master does it.

Related posts:

About Rush Limbaugh

Adult content

Web two point oh


I’ve been sharply critical of Google being involved in supporting Republicans, as controversial in its way as when they assisted China in limiting search results for that country. Now Google is doing something to change their fundamental search algorithm, by reducing the impact of links (which can be abused to create a false popularity rating) they will be putting more emphasis on the PageRank algorithm. This is to say, users of Google will determine page ranking in a form of direct democracy.

That is all a good thing if we want to try the democratic experiment, and apparently we do, but some attention must be paid to the counters of the votes. For that is what Google is presenting to us, as a gatekeeper to our network, will they practice censorship?

Yes. They will. You will not find terrorist manuals on Google. You will not find instructions on how to make a nuclear weapon. Google will take steps to reduce the ranking of pages that encourage violence.

All of that may be non-controversial, but this also means that Google will have the ability to circumscribe the limits of acceptable communication, and they are asking us to trust them in having that much authority. Once again, consider what they did on behalf of China, and ask if they will not do the same if under pressure here. Will this site be censored for discussing issues of cannabis?

I would like to think that we could trust them, but I think it is past time to consider ways of indexing a web and distributing the counting in an open source way, and that’s been going on for awhile already. We call one form of organization a blogosphere.


Glenn Greenwald writes about the case of Maher Arar, an innocent Canadian man who was tortured on behalf of the Cheney/Bush maladministration, in a case of mistaken identity.

Via Andrew Sullivan, here is a video about the case.

Here is Patrick Leahy examining the war criminal Alberto Gonzales (audio only).

As CNN reports,

Canada’s prime minister apologized to Maher Arar on Friday and announced the government would compensate him C$10.5 million (US$8.9 million) for its role in his deportation from the U.S. to Syria, where he was tortured while held in prison for nearly a year. . . .

“On behalf of the government of Canada, I want to extend a full apology to you and Monia as well as your family for the role played by Canadian officials in the terrible ordeal that you experienced in 2002 and 2003,” Harper said. Arar and his wife, Monia Mazigh, and their young son and daughter now live in Kamloops, British Columbia.

“I sincerely hope that these words and actions will assist you and your family in your efforts to begin a new and hopeful chapter in your lives,” Harper said, adding the compensation package would also pay for his estimated $1 million in legal fees.

When your friends have to apologize for your bad behavior, it’s time.

Someone knows what it’s like to be the sad man

Doctor Biobrain remains the greatest psychoanalyst of the neoconservative mind anywhere on the net. Dick Cheney serves as his model psychopath, as examined by interviewer Wolf Blitzer on CNN. Here’s the video.

He looks to me like a man on the edge of a breakdown, he will have to cry soon. Thank you Mary.

“Please don’t sue me. I’m just a fan.”

Music is language.

“Just relax, and enjoy this pleasant adventure. Here you are, secure and protected, in this, your special place, letting my voice flow into your mind. There’s no need to concentrate. Just gently as you go. Suggestions are going into your unconscious mind. Open yourself up to the greater wisdom and understanding. So, now, letting the sound of my voice reach the inner, healthy, receptive centre of yourself. See yourself now in your imagination; and you are being transformed in a positive healthy way, so you are programming your unconscious mind, gaining new insight into your directions, in the future. Allow yourself to be more aware of your pathway through this life. Enjoy all that you can. As the days go by, you are programming your mind, and you are allowing this to happen. These things are happening day by day, just as I tell you they are happening, wherever you are. See this happening. Allow it to become part of you; more and more happily, more and more surely, more and more powerfully, each day. When it is necessary, you can program yourself, be able to dream the information you require. This awareness will come back to you at your own rate. It will never be more than you can cope with. This guidance will help show you the way. This will only happen if you choose it will be so. Ready, now…”

Listen here.

1969 in the sunshine

Blogging isn’t a bad life

Lee Rosenberg (thehim) is looking for a way to blog while keeping his bills paid. Our situation is similar, but in our case the insurance and everything are in place and we have just enough to pay our bills and tread water now. It would be nice if we could plan to have a family but we cannot even imagine it financially now. I cannot complain; we are not starving unless we try to live beyond our means. Once in a blue moon we might even go out to see a movie. (I highly recommend Pan’s Labyrinth.)

Oh, also I blog semi-anonymously. It’s not hard for people to figure out who I am if they care enough, but I have no desire for personal publicity outside those who know me by introduction. I’d love to have a larger readership but I don’t want to write for hire. I wouldn’t mind it if I could find a way to support myself on donations but it would have to be done in a way that would be kept away from me, lest I be corrupted by seeing what I can say that brings in more dollars.

I want to speak from my heart and tell you what seems right to me, so that if I make a mistake it was one not made with a gain in mind. I could choose to become wealthy, it would be easy enough if I had the will to subjugate myself to that end, to put aside my childish blogging. I could be a capitalist like the Goldman family, and I love them very much.

But to do this I would have to turn my back on injustice, to stop looking in the dark corners where people are being tortured in our names. To let the problems of the world be someone else’s problem, I cannot do this. To the extent I can integrate what I do with helping people, I will do it. While the current crisis is ongoing, the most helpful thing I can do is communicate a way that I see through the danger. I could be non-essential, maybe my own thoughts are not as good as someone else’s, but I don’t know that. For the want of a nail, the horse, the battle and finally the war were lost.

We are the ’80s

So to speak

Christians in America, as in other countries of predominantly Christian faith, are divided in categories or degrees of political adherence. There are Christians who do not want to force their beliefs upon those who are of other faiths. There are those who silently listen and observe what they can, to be in the world but not of it, and to act and speak when we see injustice or an opportunity to help someone. Many of us are not enrolled in any formal church, we do not subscribe to a particular form of public meeting. Those of us who speak take some risk, because the fake christians who defy the teachings of their proclaimed Christ by their hypocrisy are the ones who have used their deception to oppress anyone who stands against their corrupt ways. Prohibitionists, hypocrites. You are dark somewhere inside yourself and need to let the light in.

Related posts:


A few days late

NTodd has an interesting perspective on the issue of birth control, of which abortion is only one component. I tend not to write about this issue often because it is so deeply a matter of personal conscience what determines the relative value of a given human life over another. I also take a Monty Pythonesque view on the issue of contraception, which is to say their true view and not the view they satirize by their famous song.

Let me take a moment to point out the obvious hypocrisy of anyone with a purportedly pro-human life outlook being advocates of war. Obviously they value some lives more than others, and some are entirely dispensable to them.

No sane person wants there to be unwanted children or abortions, if it were possible to avoid having them without doing violence to women (or men). We should not want to mutilate people’s genitals, we should not want there to be any harm done to the innocent.

We don’t often enough stop to consider that the cause of violence is usually violence. Stop non-consensual sex and you will stop most or all of the abortions that occur. Stop adultery and you will stop the rest.

Oh, but you don’t want to stop adultery, going by what I see.

Except to punish the woman, because she is the one who is subject to violence from her spouse if she is caught with child.

We have to end the violence done to women, and you know that divorce must be a right for that very reason. But what many of you don’t know or publicly admit due to the risk of persecution is that violence can be tamed by cannabis — marijuana. It is a lie and an obvious one at that when prohibitionists associate cannabis with violence, when the only violence is involved in the criminal aspects of prohibition itself.

End cannabis prohibition and you will see that the very thing you criticize about “hippies” is their non-violence.

End cannabis prohibition and you will end the war in Iraq and in the rest of the middle east. Cannabis can be grown to fuel our economy. Cars and trucks can run on clean biological oils. Paints and chemicals can be made from it. Cannabis may be sacred but she is also profane. We have a petroleum economy today but we cannot have a petroleum economy forever.

She luuuuuurves him

Michelle Bachman kissing George Bush on the mouth

Via Watertiger, and when I saw this last night (after she was holding on to his arm for what seemed like a few minutes to get a chance to do this), I wondered who she was. Res ipsa loquitur says,


She is Michelle Bachman of Minnesota (GOP-obviously). This morning on MPR she referred to Bush as “The Commander of the Free World”. Her husband is a psychiatrist who “deprograms” gay people and she was endorsed from the pulpit by Mac Hammond (a television evangelist).


In case you were wondering too. It turns out her name is spelled Michele, and she is also a freshman member of congress, replacing another Republican who vacated his seat to run (unsuccessfully) for the US senate.

Break it down.

Turn this mutha out.

The nice thing about standards– is we have so many to choose from.

Jerusalem Post:

The State Department indicated Friday that it had no objection to plan by Jordan to develop a nuclear program for peaceful purposes.

Deputy spokesman Tom Casey, without mentioning Jordan by name, said every country that adheres strictly to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty “has the right to develop civilian nuclear power for the benefit of their people.”

Casey commented in response to a disclosure King Abdullah II that his government has been discussing with western countries a plan to develop a civilian nuclear capability.

Associated Press (via Glen):

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates – A second U.S. aircraft carrier strike group now steaming toward the Middle East is Washington’s way of warning Iran to back down in its attempts to dominate the region, a top U.S. diplomat said here Tuesday.

Nicholas Burns, U.S. undersecretary of state for political affairs, ruled out direct negotiations with Iran and said a rapprochement between Washington and Tehran was “not possible” until Iran halts uranium enrichment.

Get out of the waves, get out of the water



Via skippy.

Sleepy go night night

Via Watertiger.

Yoo hoo

Posted in Music. 2 Comments »

An unnecessary war

Glenn Greenwald:

In our political discourse, there just no longer is a strong presumption against war. In fact, it’s almost as though there is a reverse presumption — that we should proceed to wage wars on whatever countries we dislike or which are defying our orders in some way unless someone can find compelling reasons not to. The burden is now on those who would like not to engage in a series of endless wars to demonstrate why we should not.

Update: Dr. James Benjamin has more, on the banality of warfare in American discourse.

Modern conservatives

Wherein I show off my novice drawing skills

Egg drawing
(pencil on newsprint)

“Keep the egg from fully cracking”

That’s a direct quote from the man who is sending 21,500 American men and women on a fool’s errand of putting Humpty-Dumpty together again, at risk of their lives.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Yeah, you know, that’s an interesting question. I don’t quite view it as the broken egg; I view it as the cracked egg –

MR. LEHRER: Cracked egg?

PRESIDENT BUSH: — that — where we still have a chance to move beyond the broken egg. And I thought long and hard about the decision, Jim. Obviously it’s a big decision for this theater in the war on terror, and you know, if I didn’t believe we could keep the egg from fully cracking, I wouldn’t ask 21,000 kids — additional kids to go into Iraq to reinforce those troops that are there.

Watch the interview here.

Hat-tip Shakes. Read the rest of this entry »


Russell Feingold is not running for president.

Unlike Joseph Lieberman, he is a mensch.

I want to take this morning’s post for a moment to discuss what we expect the senate to do. What do the members stand for and what will they stand for?

Will the Republicans follow their own base instincts? Yes, and not one of them now in the senate voted against the military commissions act of 20072006 — the act of abominations.

Why do I bring up Joe Lieberman? Because he is emblematic of what we face, a then-democrat he also voted for this monstrous war crime.

Why did Joe vote for torture? People have a lot of reasons they do things, but they come back to a fundamental question of whose interests they serve. Joe is accused of being the senator from Israel. It’s an unfair accusation, and assumes as well that Israel speaks with one voice. If America were held to the same standard it would be the tyrant’s voice the world would hear.

We have many voices, every country and nation. We have those within our number who pervert our desires for peace and turn it to warfare. Why do they do this?

Of course, as soon as I begin to explore the landscape of what motivates others, it becomes self-analysis very quickly, as it should. So I can only really speak to what thoughts are imaginable, conceivable to me.

Hubris is a possibility. Maybe Joe Lieberman sees this as his ticket to the presidency somehow?

At least for now, we know that Russ Feingold is not seeking the presidency. He is trying to preserve what is left of our nation before the tyrant destroys it and turns us into a banana republic.

Russ Feingold is the conscience of the senate.

Sic semper tyrannis

The great comet of 2007

Shit productions, apparently

Tidal wave

A very large wave begun in the very deepest parts of the ocean, it does not look like much out there because in the volume of water the depth of the wave is very slight. As it moves toward land it swells in size like a shark rising up out of the water, devouring the water ahead of itself.

If you have a little advance warning you can seek higher ground.

God bless Barack Obama

Protect him from harm.

Athenae has a report from Harvey, Louisiana, at First Draft’s new digs.

War is the enemy of the poor, and the rich

When you spend lives and treasure to destroy lives and treasure, you impoverish yourself.

Listen to Doctor King.

Please read

Now is the time


Adult content

End cannabis prohibition and the war will end peacefully. That is my advice.

Wasser Krankheit

KCBS in San Francisco reports a woman killed of hyponatremia, while participating in a spectacularly ill-considered water drinking contest by radio station KDND 107.9 in Sacramento.

Water is very capable of causing toxicity and death when consumed in too much quantity over too short a period, due to a drop in salt levels in your blood stream, also called electrolyte imbalance.

Thanks to Pete, and as he says, water can be overdosed to death, but cannabis cannot.

Real good, for free


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