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  • Thursday, March 30, 2006


    Who's Worm Is Sneaking Around My Computer?

    It's the small things that amuse me.

    While looking around Vice-President Dick Cheney's White House web site, hoping to find some interesting photos to "doctor," I received a Norton AntiVirus warning. Hello, what's all this then? A worm trying to get into my computer? From the White House site? Oh, this is just too perfect! I got a few more warnings on subsequent pages and each of those "worms" seemed to try a different approach. One went for a port but I didn't note specifically what the others tried.

    I'm wondering what they would have done? Might I have been tracked down as a "tearist" seeking secret information from the public website? I know the WH website is a target for vandalism but to use a worm on a casual viewer of the site? That's a bit of overkill in my book. I swear I wasn't doing anything bad, just looking. Jeez, maybe they can read my mind! They saw my intent to deface the VP's pictures on my computer. They can sense intent to humiliate and use satire!? This is the stuff of paranoia, "fear and loathing" as Hunter Thompson was wont to say.

    Innocent until destroyed by worms. My own damn fault for even looking at the WH website. Of course they want to get into my computer. The irony never ends.

    Wednesday, March 29, 2006


    A Head Full of Stardust

    I have obviously been doing things other than blogging this month. Days go by without without my even glancing at blogs, much less writing my own self-involved ravings.

    I am happily working away on other projects. This is a good thing. I'll undoubtedly be writing more in this blog soon but readers should expect my posts to be rather irregular for at least another few weeks. I'm having fun. Ta.

    Saturday, March 25, 2006


    New Me, Same as the Old Me

    After almost no consideration and in celebration of Mercury going Direct, I'm changing the name I use in this blog to... (wait for it) ...DemiOrator. Radical! The whole "wordlackey" nom de plume/guerre was getting old, played into the ground, as it were. It was difficult to remember. Funny at first, it was just getting tired, tired, tired. It's spring! Time for new beginnings, housecleaning, etc.

    So "Call me DemiOrator." Hmm. Doesn't quite have the ring of "Call me Ishmael" does it?

    Thursday, March 23, 2006


    Perversion and Empire

    Some days I fear for my sanity.

    I've been mulling over the ideas of economic capital and infrastructure and what happens when too much money and stored energy is siphoned off by capitalists and government. The deliberate bleeding of the saved economic energy of the country for profit. But I was having trouble quantifying these thoughts so I began doing my usual art therapy on an image of Our Beloved Leader™™. Unfortunately I picked the flight suit image with it's amazing codpiece prominence so I found myself staring at OBL's crotch for an extended period. While not stricken blind by this meditation, I did make it larger. Despite my impulse to make it really noticable, I refrained. (In one version, I applied a reddish-pink tone to the area enlarged, giving it the appearance of a huge, misshapen, mutant penis. Amusing, but not really for public consumption. I have some sense of discretion and taste. Not much but some.)

    This is perversion, pure and simple. Thus the title of my post. May your dreams not be haunted by this dark imagery.

    Saturday, March 18, 2006


    Crawling from the Wreckage

    I've been thinking about the internets (sic) and the commercial nature of it all. Despite the emphasis and perception of the internet as an interlocked series of commercial enterprise sites and services, it remains a massive individual-driven project.

    I know that I'm biased but I can't help but think about the individuals and groups who provide information and content without any commercial motivation. Oh, yes, there are many trying to make money off their content but this is often a secondary effort to gain some recompense for their work, not as the primary motivation.

    Of course, not all internet content is of value but still...

    I've been working/collaborating on a Wiki-based project. In a while, the content of the Wiki will become a FAQ for a group I'm affiliated with. We may also publish it as a pamphlet. No one is being paid for their work and everything is on a volunteer basis. We saw a need for the FAQ, gathered together people who could contribute substantially to it and went at creating it.

    Projects like the one I just described are part of the ad hoc nature of the internet. While commerce is the propulsion behind all sorts of things on the internet, there are still huge portions driven by individual contributions given freely.

    Just a thought.

    Wednesday, March 15, 2006


    Government Secrecy and Sunshine Week

    Governments like secrets. Oh, they make lots of noise about national security and the need to keep information from our "enemies" but, at root, it's also a desire to keep nasty and inconvenient facts from the public. I use quotes on "enemies" because this is a category prone to expansive inclusion. Is it necessary to keep some government information secret? Of course. The question remains: What information needs to be secret and what information is merely uncomfortable to the government if made public?

    It becomes difficult to trust the leaders who say "Trust us" when, time and again, they have used a repetitive pattern of lies to mask illegal and unethical actions. As Juvenal asks "Sed quis custodiet ipsos Custodes?" or "But who is to guard the guards themselves?" What if the guards themselves are lied to as is the case of the illegal wiretapping program? The oversight committee of Congress wasn't completely or properly briefed on the program. And they have security clearance to hear the information and keep it secret.

    I was interested to hear about an upcoming PBS program called The Sunshine Gang, showing on Friday, March 17, 2006. I have no idea whether it will be any good, but it sparked my interest in finding out more about our current "Sunshine laws," also sometimes referred to as whistleblower laws.

    A brief history of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) is on the PBS NOW site. There is also another website with information as well as listings of events around Sunshine Week.

    Let the sun shine in.


    The Cell Phone "Do Not Call" List

    It was recently passed on to me that telemarketers would soon be able to call cell phones. I began to get in a righteous huff until I managed to read about it on an Urban Legends site and the ever-wonderful The following is from Snopes:
    Origins: Despite dire warnings about the imminent release of cell phone numbers to telemarketers that continue to be circulated via e-mail year after year, no such thing is about to occur, nor do cell phone users have to register their cell phone numbers with the national Do Not Call registry before a soon-to-pass deadline to head off an onslaught of telemarketing calls. The panic-inducing e-mails (which circulate especially widely every January, since many versions of the warning list the end of that month as a cut-off date for registering cell phone numbers with the national Do Not Call registry) have grown out of a misunderstanding about the proposed creation of a wireless directory assistance service.

    Cell phone numbers have generally been excluded from printed telephone books and directory assistance services. However, since the use of cell phones has burgeoned in recent years (to the point that many people no longer maintain landline phone service), several national wireless companies (AllTel, AT&T Wireless, Cingular, Nextel, Sprint PCS, and T-Mobile) have banded together and hired Qsent, Inc. to produce a Wireless 411 service. Their goal is to pool their listings to create a comprehensive directory of cell phone customer names and phone numbers that would be made available to directory assistance providers.
    I had already formulated a plan to deal with telemarketers calling on my cell phone: I would take them to small claims court. My first idea was just to charge them for my costs on my cell phone plan, some piddling amount between .15 cents and a couple of dollars. I was going to promulgate this idea in hopes it would become a pop meme. I figured the massed effect of many people doing this would be too overwhelming for the telemarketers to continue the practice for long.

    Yet the idea still holds a certain attraction to me. I doubt this could be adapted for landline use because such calls do not actually cost money to the receiver. Still, I think it's a tactic to tuck away for future use.

    Sunday, March 12, 2006


    Enough Tears to Go Around...

    Solidarity. Is it an old school word? The struggles throughout the world of the tortured, of the raped, of the disempowered, are joined by a thread of common cause. It used to be expressed "Your struggle is similar to my struggle. Let us support each other in our struggles against all oppressors."

    While watching Angela Y. Davis speak on BookTV about the hunger strike deaths of over 120 prisoners in Turkey protesting the building of "American-style prisons," I thought of the way the word solidarity seems to have lost currency in American society. There is an isolationism which echoes the sociopathic focus on individual autonomy in the US. This atomizing consumer mentality has led us to view the nuclear family as the basic unit of society. Increasingly, even this unit isn't small enough for corporate purposes and the individual is encouraged to pursue their separate gratification, an isolated particle of desire and socially oblivious material lusts.

    These thoughts were tied together when I went out to Jamnesty: Benefit Concert to Stop Violence Against Women at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Student Union. Some live music provided the soundtrack to a long row of tables staffed by various Amnesty International (AI) groups. I went down the line of tables, conscientiously reading and signing petitions to congresscritters, dictators, and others. I picked up factsheets about "Rape as a Tool of War," and on the conflict in Darfur. "Stop Violence Against Women in Juárez and Chihuahua, Mexico" was the title of another. One table was collecting funds for Jane Doe, Inc., The Massachusetts Coalition Against Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence; I put a few dollars in the box. I would have given more but no one was at the table and it makes me nervous to leave cash in an open and unattended donation box.

    Like many people in the US, I am prone to compassion overload. Long litanies of "the evils that men do" induce in me a numb sense of disaster, of overwhelming hopelessness in the face of the myriad juggernauts of brutality. My mind retreats from these images and descriptions, insulating itself from caring any more. I become bewildered and depressed, confused and blank. So it was today. Yet I still thought about these things and pondered my ability to help these people who suffer, most of them far away from where I live.

    There's a saying I think I picked up from Robert Heinlein, the Science Fiction writer, that goes something like this: "Happiness shared is doubled; pain shared is halved." This brings me back to the beginning: Solidarity. One reason I'm listing and including links to the items listed above is to provide a connection, a thread between me and those horribly victimized women and children. Despite my relatively safe and privileged life as a white male in the USA, I still feel empathy and compassion for the suffering of other people. I still desire an end to such vicious violence. I still see a clear connection between injustice in Mexico and Darfur and injustice in the US. I still believe in uniting in a common fight against all these dark forces of destruction, pain, and death. This belief still sustains and nourishes my soul.

    I write things like this, hoping I (and others) might take away a bit of strength from it, a sense of shared purpose. I gather the threads, try to follow the connections and weave them together. I believe shared anger at injustice can change the world.


    Saturday, March 11, 2006


    Arrogant and Contemptuous, Sneering and Vicious

    Welcome to today's description the US government under the Bush administration. This is the administration that wants to control the terms, the rules of engagement, at all times. When the Bush administration doesn't like something, no problem. Just redefine the parameters in your favor.

    A low approval rating? Then the population don't understand the great wisdom your foreign policy.

    Forcing feeding tubes up the noses of "detainees" at Guantanamo is part of the "culture of life." And if you just happen to be able to torture and humiliate the prisoners at the same time, that's a bonus! It can't be torture if you're saving their lives, right?

    I think I'm weary and battered by the evil that men do. Well, perhaps just certain men.

    I noticed an odd thing while looking on Google for images of the Prez to deface in my pursuit of art therapy and the momentary joy it brings. Page after page of "official" and American press photos went by. I began to notice a sameness to them. Not just the same photos but the same narrow range of expressions on the face of Bush. After 20 pages of these, I started to come across foreign press photos, mostly Spanish language news services. Lo! Then there were pics with a much wider variation of expression on the Prez's face. The impression I got was that the American editors were definitely choosing for a certain "look". This is the power of being able to control what images are being made public. Oh, I'm sure it's not a conspiracy, but it is what happens when "respectable" news organizations control content: you won't see the man make an ugly face or a funny face. We are given only bland, non-controversial images and pictures because the news organizations don't want to lose access.

    Welcome to the image Newspeak, where nothing can be disturbing or candid. What bodies in Iraq? I don't see any bodies. I'm not sure anyone is really dying there. (That's, that's a joke, son! Pay attention!)

    Let me just leave you with the same words I opened with, the words I'm using to describe the Bush administration: Arrogant and contemptuous, sneering and vicious. They say so much.

    Thursday, March 09, 2006


    Happy International Women's Day, Belated Edition

    International Women's Day was yesterday, 8 March 2006, and I did not post anything on it. Such a naughty fellow am I!

    I think of people (well, men, if you want to be technical about it) who pose questions like "Where's my special day? Why isn't there a Straight White Men's Day? Huh? International Women's Day, Black History Month, Gay Pride Month, everyone's got special celebrations but me." Of course, the typical answer in some quarters is "Didn't you know? Every day is straight white men's day." While this may seem to belittle the individual hardships even straight white men go through, from a class, gender, and social analysis perspective, I find it a rather apt comeback.

    A brief gadabout of "International Women's Day" Google listings leads me to the Wikipedia article on IWD, whence the following is excerpted:
    The first IWD was observed on 28 February 1909 in the United States following a declaration by the Socialist Party of America. Among other relevant historic events, it commemorates the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire (New York, 1911), where over 140 women lost their lives. The idea of having an international women's day was first put forward at the turn of the 20th century amid rapid world industrialization and economic expansion that led to protests over working conditions. Women from clothing and textile factories staged one such protest on 8 March 1857 in New York City. The garment workers were protesting what they saw as very poor working conditions and low wages. The protesters were attacked and dispersed by police. These women established their first labor union in the same month two years later.

    More protests followed on 8 March in subsequent years, most notably in 1908 when 15,000 women marched through New York City demanding shorter hours, better pay and voting rights. In 1910 the first international women's conference was held in Copenhagen by the Socialist International and an 'International Women's Day' was established, which was submitted by the important German Socialist Clara Zetkin. The following year, IWD was marked by over a million people in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland. However, soon thereafter, the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire in New York City killed over 140 garment workers. A lack of safety measures was blamed for the high death toll. Furthermore, on the eve of World War I, women across Europe held peace rallies on 8 March 1913. In the West, International Women's Day was commemorated during the 1910s and 1920s, but dwindled. It was revived by the rise of feminism in the 1960s.

    Demonstrations marking International Women's Day in Russia proved to be the first stage of the Russian Revolution of 1917. Following the October Revolution, the Bolshevik feminist Alexandra Kollontai persuaded Lenin to make it an official holiday, and it was established, but was a working day until 1965. On May 8, 1965 by the decree of the USSR Presidium of the Supreme Soviet International Women's Day was declared as a non working day in the USSR "in commemoration of outstanding merits of the Soviet women in communistic construction, in the defense of their Motherland during the Great Patriotic War, their heroism and selflessness at the front and in rear, and also marking the big contribution of women to strengthening friendship between peoples and struggle for the peace".
    I'm continually surprised by either my ignorance or what I've managed to forget over the years. I must have known about the connection between IWD and the Russian Revolution but I didn't remember this until I read it here. I find two commemorative days ironic and amusing, IWD and May Day, because they both originated in the USA but many people in the US snub them as "foreign" or "communist." Of course, May Day has a much older history than its modern political celebration, notably as Beltaine (Bealtaine in modern Irish).

    So here are a few links to blogs I picked out of searches, a serendipitous selection if you will.

    Tuesday, March 07, 2006


    The Kinja Card of DemiOrator

    While doing an ego search on DemiOrator, I came across a curious site which was unfamiliar to me.

    Kinja, the weblog guide, trawls blogs and presents some interesting aggregate information. The Kinja card for DemiOrator provides links to recent stories of other blogs and sites mentioned or blogrolled on DemiOrator. This is a nifty way of showing connections and linkage. I like it. Plug in the URL of your favorite blog and see what comes up.


    Musings on Blogging in the Key of E

    "Don't you ever wonder 'Why are we here? What's it all about?'" From philosophy and Monty Python comes this eternal puzzle of the meaning of life. I am currently considering it as well.

    The advent of the Koufax Award nominations nudges me to consider the purpose of this blog. Many of the blogs I admire have focus, a central theme or subject for their posts. Pam's House Blend does a terrific job of exposing anti-gay actions and rhetoric of right-wing politicians and Christians. I Blame the Patriarchy has some of the sharpest (and funniest) feminist analysis I've seen on the web. The Heretik combines satiric graphics with piercing commentary. So I'm left wondering what, as it were, DemiOrator is all about.

    While I do have a number of subjects I consistently write about, it would be difficult for me to point to one and say "That is what DemiOrator is all about. That is the truth I cleave to and speak of, in my own voice and none other." (Well, that's what I'd say in a faux classical, erudite Victorian writing voice.) I'm a magpie for subject matter, collecting shiny bits I find and showing them to my readers. I am somewhat eclectic in my tastes, although not strictly catholic. (Now there's a word I think very strange in its usage, not easily used today.)

    Without some central cause, I am left with the root impetus for starting DemiOrator: as a platform for practicing my rhetoric and writing. The actual specific subjects are variable. It would be much easier if I could focus on just monophytes or anchorites, some very narrow field of interest, but I'm promiscuous and flitting in my attentions. Although I desire a wider readership, I suspect DemiOrator will never really appeal to a popular audience without providing consistently predictable content or subject matter. And the $deities know I need to clean up the visual presentation because it's a mess.

    I seem destined to occasionally embark on these public fits of self-reflection, flagellation, and castigation. Obviously they rarely come to aught; the blog remains colicky and erratic. But it is my jittery child with ADD so I love it. Mostly.

    And as a bonus if you've managed to read through my carping and whining, check out Satire I of Juvenal. A little difficult to get all the contemporaneous references in it but there are still plenty of very understandable barbs. Funny man.
    WHAT? Am I to be a listener only all my days? Am I never to get my word in—I that have been so often bored by the Theseid[1] of the ranting Cordus? Shall this one have spouted to me his comedies, and that one his love ditties, and I be unavenged? Shall I have no revenge on one who has taken up the whole day with an interminable Telephus[2] or with an Orestes[2] which, after filling the margin at the top of the roll and the back as well, hasn't even yet come to an end?


    No Pagan Headstones for US Military Personnel

    A little blurb on AlternetPEEK (No freedom of religion for Wiccan soldier) led me to the Pagan Headstone Campaign.

    I find it kind of strange that they allow many other less-than-mainstream faiths to put symbols on their military headstones but not Wiccans. It's not as if Wiccans haven't been fighting for military recognition of their religion for, oh, well over twenty years. While I question the accuracy of the figure quoted below, I do know that are a significant number of Pagans in the military. (The organizers have conflated Paganism and Wicca. Technically, Wicca is a subset of modern Neo-Paganism and the Pentacle is not a representative symbol for a large number of these other Neo-Pagans.) Below is a sample of faiths they do recognize from the Pagan Headstone Campaign website.
    We demand to know why Paganism, with nearly a million members in this country and so many members serving in the Armed Forces, is less acceptable than: The Aaronic Order, The American Atheist Association, The Konko-Kyo Faith, Sufism Reoriented, The Tenrikyo Church, Seicho-no-ie, The Church of World Messianity, The United Church of Religious Science, Eckankar, The American Humanist Association, The Izumo Taishakyo Mission of Hawaii, and Soka Gakkai Int'l. All of these groups have had their emblems accepted while some Pagan groups have waited seven years to have their application acted upon.

    Monday, March 06, 2006


    The Joy and Sadness of the Koufax Awards: Big Ego Edition

    The Koufax Awards nominations are eagerly awaited in the "lefty" Bloggerland. The strokes and perks for being nominated are great and it's an honor just to be nominated, much less win. So, despite the fact that I had given absolutely no thought to the matter before the fact, I was gloomed to not see this little blog of mine mentioned. Sad, even.

    However, the joy of seeing so many interesting and new (to me) blogs listed in one place is a mighty antidote to these sour grapes (which I didn't even know I had bought so left them rotting in my daypack until the smell notified me something was wrong, very wrong, and hunger rearing its dark head left me to wonder if I would survive this mistake, this tragic circumstance I had courted unwittingly through careless and ill-considered preparations, resulting in a dire emergency and a desperate need to restructure and recode the whole damn blog... but I digress.)

    Here are a few blogs (these few, these happy few...) from the nominations I would recommended to my dear readers. Go see them. And if you are so inclined, go mention my blog over at the Koufax nominations. It's too late for nominations but it would cheer me up a little if I was just mentioned in the comments or somewhere. I am a pathetic wretch with ego problems.


    Lies About Poverty in the US

    I am not an expert or a teacher of economics like my fellow blogger the Dark Wraith. I don't even like math or numbers much but I admit to an interest in the "big picture" of how the US and interlocking world economies work. So I sometimes grit my teeth and try to understand what statistics mean and the interpretations of these numbers.

    An article in the current issue of In These Times caught my eye. Lies, Damn Lies and Poverty Statistics by Christopher Moraff examines the roots of how "poverty" is defined by the US government for budgeting and other purposes. The income figures designated for the families to be considered "in poverty" have always seemed absurdly low to me. The reason why is explained in the article.
    The current method for measuring poverty in the United States was developed in 1963 by a young statistician for the Social Security Administration named Mollie Orshansky. Using data from a 1955 Department of Agriculture survey, Orshansky developed a set of thresholds that set a poverty line at three times the annual cost of feeding a family of three or more under Agriculture'’s "“low-cost budget."” She developed the thresholds purely for her own research and said at the time that her data'’s limitations would yield a "“conservative underestimate"” of poverty.
    Working Families with Incomes Less Than Family Budget and Poverty Thresholds, by RegionThis figure was then used and adopted by President Lyndon Johnson's administration in 1964 for its "War on Poverty." But wait: the Office of Economic Opportunity then took an already low and conservative number and lowered it by another 25%. "Low and conservative" meaning that they were underestimating the level of poverty in the US. Thus, by using these unrealistically low figures, they were able to "win" that war. These figures, adjusted for inflation, are still used today to measure poverty in the US.

    The figure at the left is from the article cited above labeled "Working Families with Incomes Less Than Family Budget and Poverty Thresholds, by Region." The blue bar represents a different standard of poverty. Government figures, using the low standards, place the poverty level at about 12.7 percent or 37 million Americans. Less conservative figures have put the level of people in poverty at 25 percent or 70 million Americans. Let me remind you of the standards used by the government. They bear repeating.
    What this means in real numbers is that the average poverty threshold for a family of four in 2004 was an annual income of $19,307. It was $15,067 for a family of three; $12,334 for a family of two; and $9,645 for individuals.
    It also bears repeating that an individual working fulltime at the federal minimum wage in this country ($5.15/hour) might earn less than the current federal poverty level for an individual. 35 hours a week x 52 weeks = $9,373 and 40 hours a week x 52 weeks = $10,712. Note those figures are without vacation or break. I doubt minimum wage earners would be unionized so there is no telling if there would be any sick days or even lunch breaks included. Certainly it is unlikely they would have medical insurance. Also remember this does not include taxes of any kind.

    I glaze over sometimes looking at figures like these but I think it's important to try to understand them. Welcome to the working week.


    Sedition and Free Speech

    The recent case of the V.A. nurse who was investigated for "sedition" because she wrote a letter to a local newspaper is typical of the American government's reaction to all criticism during wartime. I don't just mean this administration or this war. It has happened during wartimes for much more than a hundred years. The FBI has played an integral part of this broad application of the label "sedition" to any form of dissent.

    As noted in Agents of Repression by Churchill and Vander Wall, the national security and law enforcement agencies, particularly the FBI, have often used wars as a pretext to ramp up anti-dissent operations to levels unthinkable in peacetime. Such illegal actions are viewed incredulously outside of wartime, without some perceived external threat, but then are excused as regretable but necessary violations of civil liberties during wartime.

    Reactionary forces and personalities will laud the extremes of overzealousness, claiming it's the price we must pay to be "safe" when it's really just the excuse needed for intimidation and silencing of all dissent through force. And it works. The V.A. nurse used the phrase "act forcefully to remove a government administration playing games of smoke and mirrors and vicious deceit" in her public and printed letter to the editor. While this is a rather strong language, I find it difficult to interpret it as advocating violent overthrow of the government. I don't think violent revolutionaries tend to use the letters column in the local paper as their cadre recruiting grounds.

    The concept of "fellow travelers" seems culturally embedded, so much so that right-wing commentators continually accuse all who disagree with them as witting or unwitting collaborators with terrorists and enemies of the State. This is the current form of "red-baiting," tar-and-feathering dissent with accusations of collusion.

    Say bye-bye to the nice freedoms. You'll hardly miss them at all as the years pass. Really.

    Saturday, March 04, 2006


    I succumb to a Meme about "Ten Musical Artists You Like"

    I think this is a post devoted to "Get to Know a Blogger Day" which I just made up. This was a meme running around the LiveJournal community. First you make up the list then you find out the questions. I don't know about this one. I didn't really think much about my choices which has resulted in a rather blank response to some of the questions. There you go.

    1. Lunachicks
    2. Grin
    3. Jesus and Mary Chain
    4. Iggy Pop/The Stooges (a two-fer)
    5. Nine Inch Nails
    6. Velvet Underground
    7. Screaming Blue Messiahs
    8. Shriekback
    9. White Zombie
    10. Waterboys

    What was the first song you ever heard by 6? (Velvet Underground)
    Probably "Rock and Roll" but possibly "Sweet Jane". I almost said "Walk on the Wild Side" before realizing that song is from Lou Reed's solo career.

    What is your favorite album of 8? (Shriekback)
    "Oil and Gold", hands down.

    What is your favorite lyric that 5 has sung? (Nine Inch Nails)
    Too many to name but
    Lay my hands on heaven, and the sun and the moon and the stars/
    While the devil wants to fuck me in the back of his car.

    certainly ranks high.

    How many times have you seen 4 live? (Iggy Pop)
    Never, alas and woe is me.

    What's your favorite song of 7? (Screaming Blue Messiahs)
    Tied: "55-The Law" and "Lie Detector"

    What is a good memory you have considering the music of 10? (Waterboys)
    Um, none really.

    Is there a song of 3 that makes you sad? (Jesus and Mary Chain)
    Nope. Despite their somewhat gloomy sound, they never fail to perk me up. "Happy When It Rains" indeed.

    What is your favorite lyric that 2 has sung? (Grin)
    I actually can't think of any right now.

    What is your favorite song by 9? (White Zombie)
    Maybe "Electric Head".

    How did you get into 3? (Jesus and Mary Chain)
    I think my friend turned me on to the album "Psychocandy".

    What was the first song you heard by 1? (Lunachicks)
    I think it was "The Passenger," a song they did on the Iggy Pop tribute album "We Will Fall."

    What is your favorite song by 4? (Iggy Pop/Stooges)
    "Raw Power," "Drink New Blood," "I Wanna Be Your Dog," "Gimme Danger," "Search and Destroy," etc.

    How many time have you seen 9 live? (White Zombie)

    What is a good memory you have concerning 2? (Grin)
    Again, nothing really. Very odd since I think of music providing a backdrop to much of my life.

    Is there a song of 8 that makes you sad? (Shriekback)
    Nope. They make me feel a certain special way, if you know what I mean, and I don't think you do at all because I don't either.

    What is your favorite lyric that 3 has sung? (Jesus and Mary Chain)
    Um, lyrics are not really their strong suit. "I want your stuff, oh yeah" is not exactly bardic material.

    What is your favorite song of 1? (Lunachicks)
    Hard to say. However "Bitterness Barbie" is my favorite song title.


    Friday, March 03, 2006


    A Vinyl Random Ten Songs

    Why can't I just do things the same way as other people? The whole "random ten songs Friday" calls to me for tweaking and poking. So this time I am listing only songs which I've transfered from my vinyl collection. I did the normal random thingy, then deleted all songs from CDs. The order is the same as they came up. Oh, and I also deleted a couple of songs from groups already on the list, such as an Undertones song and another from Iggy Pop.
    1. "Jimmy Jimmy" by the Undertones
    2. "Academies to Anger" by Interview
    3. "I Wanna Be Your Dog" by Iggy Pop (from T.V. Eye)
    4. "The Kids" by Lou Reed
    5. "Life Has Passed Us By" by the Godfathers
    6. "Sylvan Song/Dream of the Archer" by Heart (a little difficulty separating the songs)
    7. "Do You Wanna Touch Me (Oh Yeah) by Joan Jett
    8. "Grey Cortina" by Tom Robinson Band
    9. "Crush on You" by Bruce Springsteen
    10. "I Will Follow" by U2
    Bonus track: "Pale Blue Eyes" by Patti Smith, bootleg recording from 1976 in Stockholm, on an album titled I Never Talked to Bob Dylan.


    Wednesday, March 01, 2006


    Economic Localization vs. Globalization

    One downside of economic globalization is the loss of control of local economies and resources. As transportation energy becomes more expensive, the advantage of massive global movement of goods will become less feasible or profitable.

    The slogan "Buy Locally" may sound simplistic and naive but the effect can have profound implications. The difficulty in doing this is the long-term degradation of local resources and their ability to meet local needs. Add to this the American consumer expectations of continued artificially low prices (artificial because of low energy and transportation costs) and the slope to regain production of goods rises steeply.

    Anyone in the US who has attempted to seek out geographically local goods finds it more and more difficult to do so.

    Hmm. I thought I had something profound to say about localization vs. globalization but I think I was just in love with playing the words against each other. I thought it was very clever wordplay but I doubt it's very original. So it goes.

    Oh, but I did discover a precious little Firefox addon/extension to translate to 1337-speak. Here is a sample: |)0 y0u |1v3 8y (0d3? (4n y0u h4(k 17? It's a funny little thing.

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