In case you're wondering...
... where I've been, I'm crashing on a project. One that, well, pays. Yeah, filthy lucre trumps blogging for nuthin'. Funny world, isn't it?
The Prairie Angel returns from her galactic wandering and finds mischief afoot!
In case you're wondering...
... where I've been, I'm crashing on a project. One that, well, pays. Yeah, filthy lucre trumps blogging for nuthin'. Funny world, isn't it?
Anderson Cooper. Tuxedo. Beads...
.... can't breath...
[voice-off] Blogger down! medic!
Edited - kind soul sent me a better pic. *smooch*!
Can't think of a cutesy title...
When writing truth is a crime
It was bad enough when, one after another, major American and Western European news organizations capitulated to violent Islamic extremists and refused to let their readers or viewers see any of the cartoons depicting Muhammad that have triggered what amounts to a pogrom against Danes and other Westerners across the Muslim world. This craven abrogation of the standards by which news judgments normally are made was matched by the cringing, minor-key response that passed for diplomacy on the part of Washington and most of the European governments.
The Western news media's stampede for safety has created quite a draft, and left to swing in the wind are the courageous Arab journalists who printed some of the cartoons in connection with stories and editorials denouncing the violence.
In Yemen, three journalists already are in jail and a fourth is a fugitive. A local imam says, "The government must execute them." Their crime? Writing editorials that urged fellow Muslims to avoid violence and to accept an apology from the Danish paper, Jyllands-Posten, which first published the cartoons.
Eleven journalists facing prison, perhaps death, for the crime of publishing sense and where are the outraged editorials in American and European newspapers? Where are the letter-writing campaigns and protests on their behalf from their colleagues in the United States?
This indifferent silence is all of a piece with the way in which the major Western news organizations have treated the ongoing story of the Iraq war's appalling toll on the journalists trying to inform the world about what's going on there. That's not to argue that the killing of reporters or cameramen is any more lamentable than the deaths of Iraqi civilians or the coalition's servicemen and women. Still, as advocates for — and beneficiaries of — a free press, Western news organizations ought to take some responsibility for defending the principle that makes their service to society possible.
According to Reporters Sans Frontieres, 82 journalists have been killed in Iraq since the American-lead invasion began three years ago. Of all the foreign news organizations working there, al-Arabiya has suffered the heaviest losses. Six members of its staff have been murdered.
But the news organization that has suffered the heaviest losses isn't based in the Gulf, London or New York. Its headquarters is in — of all places — Baghdad. Since the fall of Saddam Hussein, 10 employees of al-Iraqiya television have been murdered.
Just imagine what would be happening on this country's editorial pages and television stations if 10 correspondents from the Los Angeles Times or the New York Times or ABC or Fox News had been killed?
Similarly, of the 38 journalists kidnapped in Iraq since the war began, five were killed. Four were Iraqis and one was Italian. Every editorial page editor in America can tell you about Jill Carroll, the Christian Science Monitor reporter currently being held by insurgents somewhere in Iraq. Next time you meet one of these people, ask them to name one of the Iraqis who were murdered in similar circumstances.
Arab journalists and their counterparts throughout the Muslim world willing to speak up at all deserve the full measure of their Western colleagues' support not only because they are defending one of the fundamental principles that make a civil society possible, but also — and most important — because they are agents of transformative hope.
The jihadis, who have more to fear from hope than they do from all our weapons, know this, and so they kill independent Muslim journalists. The corrupt and sclerotic regimes in power across the Middle East who fear change more than hell know this, so they throw independent editors and reporters into prison.
Western journalism's institutional silence in the face of these outrages is neither wise nor prudent. It is cowardly and, ultimately, self-destructive.
Daddy, buy me this.
Pweeeeease? Edit - link fixed
What ever happened to 'Buy American'?
WTF, over? From CNN:
The Bush administration should disclose more about a deal that would give a United Arab Emirates-based company management of six major U.S. seaports, former Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge said Monday.In what universe is this a conservative administration?
The deal -- which will affect the ports of New York and New Jersey; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Baltimore, Maryland; Miami, Florida; and New Orleans, Louisiana -- has triggered security concerns among some members of Congress and the public.
I'm reely going to regret this...
The 'darkside' of the Johari window is the Nohari window. Here's mine. Go on, I won't believe a thing you say anyway...
Yes, it's time for Yet Another Quiz!!
Coming on December 1, 2005:
Your Ultimate Sci-Fi Profile: which sci-fi crew would you best fit in? The Sequel
SG-1 (from Stargate)
Moya (from Farscape)
Millennium Falcon (from Star Wars)
Serenity (from Firefly)
Enterprise D (from Star Trek)
Nebuchadnezzar (from The Matrix)
Galactica (from Battlestar: Galactica)
Bebop (from Cowboy Bebop)
The jingoism playbook has such few plays...
TEHRAN, Iran - Iranians love Danish pastries, but when they look for the flaky dessert at the bakery they now have to ask for "Roses of the Prophet Muhammad."Linkie.
Bakeries across the capital were covering up their ads for Danish pastries Thursday after the confectioners' union ordered the name change in retaliation for caricatures of the Muslim prophet published in a Danish newspaper.
"Given the insults by Danish newspapers against the prophet, as of now the name of Danish pastries will give way to 'Rose of Muhammad' pastries," the union said in its order.
"This is a punishment for those who started misusing freedom of expression to insult the sanctities of Islam," said Ahmad Mahmoudi, a cake shop owner in northern Tehran.
Wow. Guess that'll show 'em, huh?
Now if you'll excuse me, it's time to take the Alsatian for a walk. I might even stop off at McD's for some Freedom Fries.
Heh - Jack Cafferty coins a phrase. From TVNewser:
After admitting he hasn't seen the full interview with Dick Cheney yet, CNN's Jack Cafferty had the following to say on The Situation Room at 4:15pm: "I would guess it didn't exactly represent a profile in courage for the vice president to wander over there to the F-word network for a sit down with Brit Hume. I mean, that's a little like Bonnie interviewing Clyde, ain't it? Where was the news conference? Where was the access to all of the members of the media?"Gee, Jack. Ya think?
A moment later, Cafferty added: "I mean, running over there to the Fox network. Talk about seeking a safe haven. He's not going to get any high hard ones from anybody at the F-word network. I think we know that."
All together now. Awwwww.
Dead Eye Dick
The fellow hunter who was shot and wounded by Vice President Dick Cheney has suffered a "minor heart attack" after a piece of birdshot migrated to his heart, a hospital spokesman said Tuesday.
You know, it's time the media stopped pretending this was an oopsie, using dismissive terms like 'sprayed' and 'peppered'. I'm not saying Cheney's a stone-cold killer (well, he is but he prefers to use others to carry out his slayage), but who among us in similar circumstances would have been allowed to ignore investigating authorities for fourteen hours??
You know damned well that if it had been anyone else, they would have been puffing into a breathalyzer inside of thirty minutes after the event.
And yet, the White House thinks it's funny:
The White House has decided that the best way to deal with Vice President Dick Cheney's shooting accident is to joke about it.How bad off does the old guy have to be before it's not funny any more?
President Bush's spokesman quipped Tuesday that the burnt orange school colors of the University of Texas championship football team that was visiting the White House shouldn't be confused for hunter's safety wear.
The president's brother, Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, took a similar jab after slapping an orange sticker on his chest from the Florida Farm Bureau that read, "No Farmers, No Food."
"I'm a little concerned that Dick Cheney is going to walk in," the governor cracked during an appearance in Tampa Monday.
Shake hands and contract the flu? no way. Introducing the Elbow Bump.
The Gang who Couldn't Shoot Straight
The punchlines write themselves: Cheney accidentally shoots fellow hunter
You notice this happened yesterday? They spent the last 24 hours trying to figure out how to cover it up.
... and I think the MSM is editorializing by saying 'accidentally' - they don't know that. They weren't there. Who knows what that old guy might have said to set him off?
FWIW, the last time, to my knowledge, that a VP actually shot someone was when Aaron Burr shot and killed Alexander Hamilton, and he was out of office at the time.
UPDATE: A wag remarks, "maybe it's a good thing Cheney got a long list of deferrments from Vietnam."
Now we're using the National Guard to evict Katrina-homeless from hotels.
...They are the National Guard of each state. Together with the usual perfidious incentives like "money for school" in exchange for "one weekend a month" (This has become a grim joke now in Iraq.), many people join the National Guard out of altruism. They have grown up with the images of the National Guard rescuing people in distress, people from their own states and communities -- like hurricane survivors in the Gulf Coast. I spoke with one of these Louisiana National Guard troops (who has requested anonymity until he separates from service) on the phone two nights ago, and I've been seething ever since.
The National Guard is now being employed to assist the extremely sketchy New Orleans Police with these hotel evictions; and some of the troops don't like it a bit.
Said this distressed young man on the telephone, "This is f***ing unbelievable. We were given an operations order to herd our fellow New Orleanians onto buses like cattle or convicts in the middle of the night. They weren't even allowed to pick up their belongings. We [the National Guard] were responsible to inventory their stuff and bag it up."
There is a really big New Orleans round-up scheduled, he advised me, on Monday night, February 13th.
Happy Valentine's Day.
The reason, according to this source, that these operations are being conducted at night is to evade press coverage and public outrage. The same people who were wiped out by Katrina are now being disappeared under the direction of FEMA and its adoptive parent, the union-busting Department of Fatherland Security.
Too good to be true?
If this pans out, it's a stunning advance.
Has BYU prof found AIDS cure?
Researchers, including a BYU scientist, believe they have found a new compound that could finally kill the HIV/AIDS virus, not just slow it down as current treatments do.
And, unlike the expensive, drug cocktails 25 years of research have produced for those with the deadly virus, the compound invented by Paul D. Savage of Brigham Young University appears to hunt down and kill HIV.
Although so far limited to early test tube studies, CSA-54, one of a family of compounds called Ceragenins (or CSAs), mimics the disease-fighting characteristics of anti-microbial and anti-viral agents produced naturally by a healthy human immune system.
In addition to being a potential checkmate to HIV, the compounds show indications of being just as effective against other diseases plaguing humankind - among them influenza, possibly even the dread bird flu, along with smallpox and herpes.
Savage said he and his BYU research team had been studying CSAs for eight years, noting the compounds' value against microbial and bacteria infections. It was only a year ago they saw that CSAs killed viruses, too.
Bring back the idealism of youth
As a 21-year-old, DHS Secretary Chertoff actually had some respect for individuals' rights. Too bad he turned into a partisan whore since then.
Headline of the Day
We have a winner: Astro-naughtiness could cause problems in space
Boyfriend's blogging during commercial breaks while on the air now. It's only a matter of time before he's live-logging the panel discussions.
Careful, sugar. It's a steep, slippery slope to complete blogaholism.
Weird. Andrew Sullivan's been on AC360 the past two nights now, about the cartoon riots.
And I can't disagree with a word he's said.
... Hold me. I... I'm frightened...
Who can afford pride?
Shortcomings in aid from the U.S. government are making New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin look to other nations for help in rebuilding his hurricane-damaged city.And Yay for France and Jordan.
Nagin, who has hosted a steady stream of foreign dignitaries since Hurricane Katrina hit in late August, says he may seek international assistance because U.S. aid has not been sufficient to get the city back on its feet.
"I know we had a little disappointment earlier with some signals we're getting from Washington but the international community may be able to fill the gap," Nagin said when a delegation of French government and business officials passed through on Friday to explore potential business partnerships.
Jordan's King Abdullah also visited New Orleans on Friday and Nagin said he would encourage foreign interests to help redevelop some of the areas hardest hit by the storm.
"France can take Treme. The king of Jordan can take the Lower Ninth Ward," he said, referring to two of the city's neighborhoods.
Lost World found in Indonesia, dozens of previously unknown species being catalogued.
An Appropriate Response... from Iran?
This is how you respond to cartoons you feel are offensive...
A prominent Iranian newspaper said Tuesday it would hold a competition for cartoons on the Holocaust to test whether the West extends the principle of freedom of expression to the Nazi genocide as it did to the caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad.Now if Israel can refrain from riots and burning embassies, perhaps we can all experience The Teachable Moment.
The Hamlet Riots
Just to make the point that men of a certain age will riot over anything, I give you... the Astor Place Riot, aka the Hamlet Riots. This took place in '49... that's 1849, and the riot was between fans of rival Shakespearean actors, American Edwin Forrest and British import William C. Macready.
Macready was appearing in the Astor Place Opera House as Hamlet; fans of his American rival were outraged at his disrespecting their boy in print. When police ejected disruptive elements from the theater, it sparked rioting in the streets that ultimately left 22 people dead.
Of course it wasn't really about alternate schools of acting, but about New World rage and Old World arrogance and large pools of mainly idle young men suffering from testosterone poisoning.
Technology to the Rescue
Kuwait on Sunday held the first regional camel race using robots as riders after child jockeys were banned from the lucrative sport following criticism by human rights groups.
The remote-operated robots are shaped like small boys.
1.) that's one hell of a similarity to a small boy
2.) the only way this story could be improved would be if the robot jockeys were riding robot camels.
Apparently it needs saying.
Rioting and burning over a cartoon is as lame as fighting over which Star Trek Captain rules.
This should go without saying.
Jim Sollisch in today's WaPo compares credit card companies and loan sharks. Guess who wins?
Yeah, that's gonna fly
America Online and Yahoo, two of the world's largest providers of e-mail accounts, are about to start using a system that gives preferential treatment to messages from companies that pay from 1/4 of a cent to a penny each to have them delivered. The senders must promise to contact only people who have agreed to receive their messages, or risk being blocked entirely.I plan to delete all these special messages unread. Suggest you do likewise.
The Wisdom of Chairman Mehlman
Democratic Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, a potential presidential contender in 2008, "seems to have a lot of anger" and voters usually do not send angry candidates to the White House, the Republican Party chairman said Sunday.Yeah, arrogance and incompetence are far more attractive.
"When you think of the level of anger, I'm not sure it's what Americans want," said Ken Mehlman, head of the Republican National Committee.
First there's this from The Nation:
The nation's largest telephone and cable companies are crafting an alarming set of strategies that would transform the free, open and nondiscriminatory Internet of today to a privately run and branded service that would charge a fee for virtually everything we do online.
Verizon, Comcast, Bell South and other communications giants are developing strategies that would track and store information on our every move in cyberspace in a vast data-collection and marketing system, the scope of which could rival the National Security Agency. According to white papers now being circulated in the cable, telephone and telecommunications industries, those with the deepest pockets--corporations, special-interest groups and major advertisers--would get preferred treatment. Content from these providers would have first priority on our computer and television screens, while information seen as undesirable, such as peer-to-peer communications, could be relegated to a slow lane or simply shut out.
And if that weren't bad enough, now we have Kellog, Brown and Root building "temporary detention facilities"... These would be used, the story said, in the event of an "immigration emergency."
An immigration emergency?
Any "Buffy" fans here?
Or strictly speaking, any Giles fans here? You might find this interesting:
LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - British actor Anthony Stewart Head, formerly of WB series "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," has landed the lead in "Him & Us," ABC's comedy pilot executive produced by Elton John.All together now: "Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!"
The project revolves around a fictitious, popular rock star and his relationship with his long-time manager and the rest of his colorful entourage.
Boyfriend's got a brand new blog.
The Prairie Angel has a whole new Favorite Blog now.
GOP stronghold Loudoun County, Virginia, is sending a Dem to the House of Delegates after today's special election.
Voters Sweep Herring Into Senate Seat Jan 31, 2006 -- Democrat Mark R. Herring won every Loudoun precinct in today's special election to fill the 33rd District Senate seat vacated by the resignation of Bill Mims.Man, if the GOP didn't own Diebold, they might start getting worried.