Thursday, May 26, 2005

The Blueprint - Volume 1: Seeds - PART SEVEN: News As Narrative...




"Those poor people!!!"




(psst, hey you spell tsunami with a "T", right?)


The Blueprint - Volume 1: Seeds - PART SEVEN: News As Narrative...

(We are tso tscrewed.)


Bear witness...

Close your eyes...

Now quickly - dunk your head into the rushing stream!

Grab that salmon-sushi-snack of Paris pretty-in-pink saying "hot"!

And she is!

(Even in night-vision green.)

Don't you love Paris Hilton? Wow, what's it like to be an heiress? What's the latest on her and Nicole Ritchie? Yeah Lionel Ritchie's daughter. Are they still fighting? Oh really? That's too bad. Why? Oh, you don't know? What's the latest on...


What's the latest news?

No-no, not the old stuff.

The NEW stuff.

I just wanna be up to date.

I just wanna know what's going on.


I just wanna be up to date.

I just wanna know what's going on.


I just wanna be up to date.

I just wanna know what's going on.


Is Jacko in jail yet?

Is Darfur done yet?

Is Britany bloated yet?

Is North Korea nuclear yet?

Is Star Wars good yet?

Is Iraq on track yet?



I'm cool.

Just let me know what's up.




Which one?

The entire Presidency.



You can't say that.

Of course they're not perfect.

But they've all been bad anyway.

Oh sure, they've done this, and that, and this, and that, and this, and that...

And this, and that, and this, and that...

And this, and that, and this, and that...


(my head hurts.)


The Resume Conversation - A Play by Black Krishna

ACT ONE - 2005

Chet: Hey, nice to meet you.

Manu: Hey, nice to meet you too.

Chet: So, what do you do?

Manu: Oh, I work here and do this.

Chet: Really?

Manu: Yes. How about you?

Chet: Oh, I work here and do this.

Manu: Really?

Chet: Yes. Where do you live?

Manu: Oh, I live here and it costs this.

Chet: Really?

Manu: Yes.



ACT TWO - 2006

Chet: Hey man, how's it going?

Manu: Good man, how's it going with you?

Chet: Good. How's work?

Manu: Good. How's work?

Chet: Good.




The Worst Man for the Job - A Paragraph (or two) by Black Krishna

So, what happens when the worst man for the job gets the job? It's impossible to believe. What happens when the worst man for the job keeps his job? It's impossible to believe. What happens when the worst man for the job hires for a job? It's impossible to believe.

He hires the worst man for the job in every case possible.

A man who raped his wife for 32 years, Dr. David Hager, to the Reproductive Health Drugs Advisory Committee. A man who hates the U.N., John Bolton, to the U.N. A man who designed fantastical policies destined to arm the 3rd World into self-destruction, Paul Wolfowitz, to the World Bank. A woman despised by States worldwide, Condoleeza Rice, as Secretary of State. A man who wrote memo's condoning the torture which gives America a bad name which means they keep getting attacked and so must keep fighting, Alberto Gonzales, to Attorney General. And so on.

So, where's the narrative?


Pimping Popcorn and Politics - Finding Fahrenheit 9/11

Vox Populi - The voice of the people.

It all happened.

We all watched it.

Not the movie.

The reality.

We may have only caught bits of it.

But we caught it.

Vacuum-sealed, shrink-wrapped, bite-size info-bits.

That still taste stale.

And then, like a burger with a bad bun, they go to shit.

However, maybe if you cook 'em a little differently...

Organize the courses, add spices to bring out the flavour...

Maybe even put a few of together into a 2 hour meal...


"So, let me get this straight: I can make up 4 years, in 6 hours???"
- Chris Rock on GED's (General Equivalent Diploma's)


Hmph. Wow.

What type of mental laxatives have we been taking to miss all that shit in 3 years?

And can we really make up 3 years in 2 hours?

I don't think we can.

But I'm glad we tried.


Vinsanitorium... He Said What Now?

Oh great.

Half-Man, Half-Amazing, Half-Trying.

Go Team Go!




- Your favourite team.

- They suck.

- They stop trying.

- Your time and money go elsewhere.



- Your favourite news.

- They suck.

- They stop trying.

- Your time and money go elsewhere.


News needs to be a narrative.

News needs to be responsible.

News needs to be a reminder.

News needs to be news over time.

News needs to be the big picture.

News needs to be accountability.

News needs to be accountable.

News needs to be accurate.

News needs to be... news.

Not just info.


If your news isn't narrative, it's just not news.



Or maybe the military should control the news.

Hey, I'm just sayin'...

Rumsfeld Laments Global Reach of War News

Associated Press Writer
Thu May 26, 7:21 AM ET

PHILADELPHIA - One of the military's new wartime challenges is dealing with global media that can instantly spread around the world information that may be false or damaging to U.S. interests, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said Wednesday.

The United States needs to respond to anti-American messages with greater agility and speed if it is to win the ideological struggle with Islamic extremists, Rumsfeld said in a speech to members of the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia.

"We'll need to develop considerably more sophisticated ways of using these new means of communication that are now available to reach the many and diverse audiences," he said.

Rumsfeld didn't delve deeply into specifics in his brief talk with members of the civic group. But in the recent past, news outlets have broadcast messages from terrorist groups, or reported stories that have fueled rage against Americans in the Muslim world.

"This is really the first war in history that is being conducted in an era of multiple global satellite television networks, 24-hour news outlets with live coverage of terrorist attacks, disasters and combat operations," Rumsfeld said.

He said U.S. officials must also deal with "a global Internet with universal access and no inhibitions, e-mail, cell phones, digital cameras wielded by anyone and everyone" and "a seemingly casual disregard for the protection of classified information, resulting in a near continuous hemorrhage of classified documents, to the detriment of the country."

The defense secretary was among those who complained earlier this month following deadly riots in Afghanistan after Newsweek published a story that U.S. interrogators desecrated a copy of the Quran at Guantanamo Bay. The magazine later retracted the story amid questions about its truthfulness.


The Madness of King George

(where are we?)

(i mean, this is getting weird...)



(hey... wanna do headlines?)


Headlines for May 25, 2005

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- U.S. Warned It Will Be In Iraq Five More Years
- 14 U.S. Soldiers Killed Over The Past Four Days
- House Committee Approves Another $45B for Iraq War
- Bush Urged Not to Give Military Aid to Indonesia
- FBI Accused of Interrogating U.S. Citizens Illegally Held in Pakistan
- FBI asks US Congress for new power to seize documents
- Amnesty International Accuses Israel of War Crimes


Wednesday, May 25, 2005: Choose a stream below:
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U.S. Warned It Will Be In Iraq Five More Years

A new study from a prominent London-based think tank warns that the U.S. military will be in Iraq for up to five more years because the Iraqi military is no where near capable of imposing law and order in the country. The report from the International Institute of Strategic Studies is being published as the security situation worsens in Iraq.

14 U.S. Soldiers Killed Over The Past Four Days

The U.S. has lost 14 soldiers over the past four days. The month of May is on pace to be one of the deadliest months for the U.S. in over a year -- 58 U.S. soldiers have died since the new Iraqi government was formed on April 28. The number of Iraqis killed since then is approaching 600.

Shiites Propose Basra to Become Semi-Autonomous State

The Knight Ridder news agency is reporting that Shiites near the oil rich city of Basra in the south are pushing to make the region a semi autonomous state. Analysts fear the move could spur more sectarian violence.

Report: U.S. Has Essentially Ceded Control to Resistance

And the Los Angeles Times is reporting that the U.S. has essentially ceded much of the Anbar province to the Iraqi resistance. One unnamed military official said "[Commanders] can't use the word, but we're withdrawing. Slowly, that's what we're doing."

House Subcommittee Approves Another $45 Billion for Iraq War

Washington is preparing to spend more money on the war. On Tuesday, a House subcommittee approved another $45 billion for the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, which would bring the costs of the U.S. military operations there to more than $300 billion.

Backer of 'Freedom Fries' Now Opposes the War in Iraq

But also on Capitol Hill -- a surprising critic of the war has emerged -- Republican Walter Jones. The Congressman from North Carolina recently told a local newspaper that the US went to war "with no justification." Jones made international headlines three years ago when he lashed out at France for not supporting the war effort. In March 2003 he demanded that three Congressional cafeterias ban the word French from the menus. French fries soon became freedom fries. While the ban is still in force, Jones' current view on the war appears to be closer to France's than President Bush's. Jones said "If we were given misinformation intentionally by people in this administration, to commit the authority to send boys, and in some instances girls, to go into Iraq, that is wrong. Congress must be told the truth."

Bush Urged Not to Give Military Aid to Indonesia

A coalition of more than four dozen groups have called on President Bush not to offer Indonesia military assistance when he meets today with Indonesian president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. The East Timor and Indonesia Action Network organized the campaign calling for no U.S. military aid to Indonesia. Karen Orenstein, a member of the group, said "Withholding prestigious U.S. military assistance is the best leverage the U.S. government has to demonstrate its commitment to justice, human rights and democratic reform." Congress first voted to restrict Indonesia from receiving military aid in 1991 following the Santa Cruz massacre in East Timor that left more than 270 Timorese civilians dead. The Indonesian troops carrying out the killing were using U.S. supplied M-16 rifles. All military ties with Indonesia were severed in September 1999 following the Indonesian razing of East Timor.

Report: U.S. Routinely Sends Arms to Undemocratic Nations

Meanwhile a new report from the World Policy Institute has found that the U.S. is routinely funneling military aid and arms to undemocratic nations. In 2003 more than half of the top 25 recipients of U.S. arms transfers in the developing world were defined as undemocratic by the State Department. Recipients included Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Kuwait and Uzbekistan.

FBI Accused of Interrogating Two U.S. Citizens Illegally Held in Pakistan

Human Rights Watch is accusing the FBI of interrogating and threatening two U.S. citizens while they being unlawfully detained and tortured by the Pakistani security services. According to Human Rights Watch, the men -- who are brothers -- were abducted from their home in Karachi in August, 2004. They were held until last month without ever been charged. During their eight months of detention, FBI agents repeatedly questioned them and threatened to send them to Guantanamo Bay. In addition, Human Rights Watch alleges that the FBI did not intervene to end the torture of the men or provide consular facilities normally offered to detained U.S. citizens. One of the brothers said "We were beaten severely, kept awake all night or hung upside down by Pakistani agents before each of about 10 interrogation sessions by FBI agents."

FBI asks US Congress for new power to seize documents

The Senate Intelligence Committee is taking initial steps to greatly expand the power of the FBI under the USA Patriot Act. On Tuesday the FBI formally asked Congress for sweeping new powers to seize private records without first securing approval from a judge. According to the American Civil Liberties Union this power would let agents seize records from medical facilities, libraries, hotels, gun dealers, banks and any other business, without having to appear before a judge, and without any evidence that the people targeted are involved in any criminal activity.

GOP Senator Urges Colleagues to Opposes John Bolton

On Capitol Hill, the full Senate is expected to vote as early as this week on the nomination of John Bolton to become ambassador to the United Nations. Ohio Republican George Voinovich has begun circulating a letter urging his colleagues to vote against Bolton. If five Republicans join Voinovich, Bolton's confirmation would fail. In his letter Voinovich wrote "In these dangerous times, we cannot afford to put at risk our nation's ability to successfully wage and win the war on terror with a controversial and ineffective ambassador to the United Nations."

Amnesty International Accuses Israel of War Crimes

An Israeli lawmaker has called for an immediate debate in the Knesset over a new report by Amnesty International that accuses the Israeli military of war crimes. Amnesty said the Israeli military is responsible for the deaths of some 700 Palestinians including 150 children. During the same period Amnesty said militant Palestinian groups killed 109 Israelis -- including 8 children.

House Votes to Ease Restrictions on Stem Cell Research

In defiance of President Bush, the House has voted to ease restrictions on federal funding for embryonic stem cell research. Bush has vowed to veto the measure. The new law supports research on human embryos that would otherwise be discarded.

PBS Head Pat Michell Defends Public Television

The president of PBS - Pat Mitchell -- has defended the network and rejected claims that public television is guilty of liberal bias. She also defended the former PBS host Bill Moyers who has been the target of right-wing criticism. Appearing at the National Press Club, Mitchell said "PBS does not belong to any one political party."

N.C. Church Calls For Koran To Be Flushed Down Toilet

The Council on American-Islamic Relations is demanding a church in North Carolina take down a sign that reads "The Koran needs to be flushed." The pastor of the church - the Rev. Creighton Lovelace - defended the sign saying "My creed is the Bible, which tells me I am supposed to stand up and defend my faith. I don't hate Muslims, I just hate their false doctrines." Ibrahim Hooper of CAIR responded by saying "Christians often ask themselves, 'What would Jesus do? I don't think Jesus, who is loved by Muslims and mentioned frequently in the Koran, would use such hate-filled and divisive rhetoric."


"Resurrected homie, we glad ya back..."

(no, i don't think they will learn to shoot people.)

(they may figure out who should be shot though.)

(and then make cool songs/movies/books/plays/paintings about it.)

(and... other stuff.)


(the bottom line is that a decent creative outlet will do ya good.)

(especially if you were planning on doing bad.)


"True, lasting and peaceful revolution can only be achieved through artistic means; any other social structure eventually becomes too hierarchical, dogmatic and didactic."
- Black Krishna


"Art helps realize truth in meaning."
- Black Krishna


"The end of education is character."
- Sri Sathya Sai Baba


Tupac Shakur's Mother to Open Arts Center

Associated Press Writer
Wed May 25, 6:34 PM ET

ATLANTA - Afeni Shakur was in a cocaine haze in 1990 when she heard that her son's rap career was taking off.

"I was in the heyday of using," she says. "Someone told me that Tupac was on 'The Arsenio Hall Show,' and I thought they were lying."

That's when Afeni realized cocaine was ruining her life. She had lost track of her son — a tough feat considering that all eyes were about to be on Tupac.

Afeni kicked her habit, and by the time Tupac was killed in 1996 at the height of his fame, they had rekindled their relationship. Now Afeni's life is consumed with keeping Tupac's legacy alive — and her latest effort is the June 11 grand opening of the Tupac Amaru Shakur Center for the Arts.

The $4 million project is focused on helping at-risk youth. It revolves around a six-acre campus in the Atlanta suburb of Stone Mountain that includes an art gallery, rehearsal area, offices, gift shop and a "peace garden." There are plans to add a museum, community meeting space and classrooms. A bronze statue of Tupac will be unveiled in one of the peace garden's fountains in September.

According to Afeni's attorney, Dina LaPolt, who co-produced the Oscar-nominated documentary "Tupac: Resurrection," about 80 percent of the center's cost came from the foundation Afeni set up to receive proceeds from her various Tupac albums, movies, DVDs and other projects.

The idea for the center came from a sad chapter of Afeni's history. As she bounced from New York City to Baltimore to California, falling deeper into drugs and the Black Panther movement, she enrolled young Tupac in several arts schools and programs, where he honed the natural musical and acting gifts that would make him a hip-hop icon.

"Arts can save children, no matter what's going on in their homes," Afeni, 58, told The Associated Press in a recent interview. "I wasn't available to do the right things for my son. If not for the arts, my child would've been lost."

The foundation has already hosted youth arts camps, focusing mostly on poetry and theater, in the Atlanta area, where some of Afeni's family lives. This is the first year the campers will have a permanent site.

Celina Nixon, who coordinates the camps, used to attend them as a teenager. The 22-year-old said she had a lot of things going against her in high school — namely that she had a daughter at 15.

Because attending the camp taught her to overcome setbacks, she learned to be mature and view the world through a new perspective — that of a teenage mother — rather than seeing her plight as a millstone.

"We had to write a letter to ourselves about where we wanted to be," Nixon said of her camp days. "I wanted to be able to make a difference in young girls' lives and with the youth, period."

The camp is for 12- to 18-year-olds, so when Nixon graduated from high school she was no longer allowed to attend, but Afeni offered her an internship with the foundation.

Nixon basically taught herself management techniques, and her background in drama and chorus lent itself to helping run the foundation. Afeni said she hopes the camps will continue to churn out these kind of success stories.

"I learned that I can't save the world, but I can help a child at a time," Afeni said, adding that it was all made possible by her son. "God created a miracle with his spirit. I'm all right with that."

Conspiracies abound about Tupac's unsolved shooting, but they're all a waste of time to Afeni.

"We decided to deal with the living. This is justice for me," she said. "I need to do what God has put in front of me to do, and it ain't trying to figure out who killed Tupac."


On the Net:

Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation:

Tupac Shakur:



BONUS: The Charter of Children's Rights and Freedoms...

Charter Schools Outperform Public Schools

Associated Press Writer
Wed May 25,10:06 AM ET

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - California's charter schools are 33 percent more likely to meet their academic goals than traditional public schools, a study released Wednesday found.

Classroom-based charter middle schools stood out in particular, with 81 percent meeting the state-set goals for student improvement, compared with 54 percent of traditional schools, according to EdSource, a Palo Alto-based nonpartisan organization that studies public education.

Researchers looked at demographically similar students who were at the same academic starting point, using scores from California's high school exit exam and the Academic Performance Index, which includes results from several standardized tests.

The study didn't examine what caused the difference.

Caprice Young, CEO of the California Charter Schools Association, said the findings illustrated that charter schools — especially those serving high school students — "get kids who are far below grade level, and we bring them up faster than noncharter schools."

No differences were seen between new charter schools and those that had been operating for a while, senior policy analyst Brian Edwards said. There also was little difference between schools that were converted from traditional public schools and those that were started from scratch.

California's charter school law, approved in 1992, allows for public schools that are free from many state regulations, in hopes that greater flexibility will bring academic gain.

There are now about 510 charter schools enrolling more than 180,000 students, less than 3 percent of California's 6.3 million public school students in kindergarten through 12th grade.


On the Net:


Monday, May 23, 2005

"Either your brains or your signature are gonna be on that contract..."


"My father made him an offer he couldn't refuse... Luca Brasi held a gun to his head, and my father assured him that either his brains, or his signature would be on the contract".
- Michael Corleone, "The Godfather", 1972


"Fredo. You're my older brother, and I love you. But don't ever take sides with anyone against the Family again. Ever."
- Michael Corleone, "The Godfather", 1972


"You can act like a man (SLAP!) What's the matter with you?"
- Vito Corleone, "The Godfather", 1972


"Senator. We are both part of the same hypocrisy, but never think it applies to my family".
- Michael Corleone, "The Godfather Part II", 1974


"Michael, you've won! Why do you feel you have to wipe everyone out?"
- Tom Hagan, "The Godfather Part II", 1974


"If anything in this life is certain. If history has taught us anything. It says you can kill anyone".
- Michael Corleone, "The Godfather Part II", 1974


"I'm gonna make him an offer he can't refuse."
- Vito Corleone, "The Godfather", 1972


Senators Avert Showdown Over Filibusters

AP Special Correspondent
42 minutes ago

WASHINGTON - In a dramatic reach across party lines, Senate centrists sealed a compromise Monday night that cleared the way for confirmation of many of President Bush's stalled judicial nominees, left others in limbo and preserved venerable filibuster rules.

"We have reached an agreement to try to avert a crisis in the United States Senate and pull the institution back from a precipice," said Sen. John McCain (news, bio, voting record), R-Ariz., adding the deal was based on "trust, respect and mutual desire to .... protect the rights of the minority.

"We have lifted ourselves above politics," agreed Sen. Robert C. Byrd (news, bio, voting record), D-W. Va., "And we have signed this the interest of freedom of speech, freedom of debate and freedom to dissent in the United States Senate.

Under the terms, Democrats agreed to allow final confirmation votes for Priscilla Owen, Janice Rogers Brown and William Pryor, appeals court nominees they have long blocked. There is "no commitment to vote for or against" the filibuster against two other conservatives named to the appeals court, Henry Saad and William Myers.

The agreement said future judicial nominees should "only be filibustered under extraordinary circumstances," with each senator — presumably the Democrats — holding the discretion to decide when those conditions had been met. Officials said the pact was intended to cover the Supreme Court as well as other levels of the judicary.

In light of the spirit and continuing commitments made in this agreement," Republicans joined Democrats in pledging to oppose any attempt to make changes in the application of filibuster rules — a commitment that Sen. Mike DeWine (news, bio, voting record), R-Ohio, said at the news conference was conditional on Democrats upholding their end of the deal.

While the agreement was signed by only 14 senators, they held the balance of power in a sharply divided Senate — able to thwart continued Democratic filibusters, on the one hand, and block GOP attempts to alter filibuster practices on the other.

Republicans, moving quickly, said they would seek to confirm Owen as early as Tuesday, with other cleared nominees to follow quickly.



"We gladly put you at the helm of our little fleet, but our ships must all sail in the same direction. Otherwise, who can say how long your stay with us will last. It's not personal, it's only business. You should know... Godfather."
- Lucchesi, "The Godfather Part III", 1990


"I betrayed my wife. I betrayed myself. I killed men and I ordered men to be killed. Ah, it's useless... I killed -- I ordered the death of my brother. He injured me. I killed my mother's son. I killed my father's son."
- Michael Corleone, "The Godfather Part III", 1990


Democracy Now!


(because really, it's just a good idea.)


"And if you don't know, now you know, you know..."
- The Notorious B.I.G., "Juicy"


Headlines for May 23, 2005

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- 15,000 Forces Launch Offensive In Baghdad
- Top Counter-Insurgency Iraqi Commander Assassinated
- Report: U.S. Plans To Build Four New Bases In Iraq
- FBI Seeks Greater Power to Track Mail
- Army Recruiter Arrested For Raping Recruit
- Amnesty To Support War Resister Jeremy Hinzman
- Major Papers Show No Photos of Dead U.S. Troops in Iraq
- Secret Report Raises Fears Over GM Crops

Monday, May 203, 2005: Choose a stream below:
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15,000 Forces Launch Offensive In Baghdad
In Iraq, as many 15,000 U.S. and Iraqi forces have launched a major new offensive in Baghdad -- the largest joint offensive to-date. Overnight the military reported the arrest of 300 people as part of what is being called "Operation Squeeze Play." Over the past month some 550 people have been killed in a series of attacks largely in Baghdad.

Top Counter-Insurgency Iraqi Commander Assassinated
Earlier this morning the commander of Iraq's new counter-insurgency headquarters was assassinated. Major General Wael Rubaye, was a top aide to Prime Minister Ibrahim Al-Jaafari. His main job was coordinating the fight against the Iraqi resistance. His driver was also shot dead.

Report: U.S. Plans To Build Four New Bases In Iraq
More signs are emerging that the U.S. intends to stay in Iraq for years to come. The Washington Post is reporting the US plans to build four new giant military bases inside Iraq. Under the plan, the US would station most of its troops in these heavily fortified bases designed to withstand mortar fire. Currently the US is operating out of more than 100 bases throughout the country. A spokesman for the Sunni Iraqi Islamic Party warned the U.S. about the plan. He said "They appear to be settling in a for the long run, and that will only give fuel for the terrorists."

Sunni Iraqis to Close Mosques in Protest
Meanwhile Sunni Iraqis are planning to temporarily shut down their mosques to protest recent raids led by the Shiite-led Iraqi government.

FBI Seeks Greater Power to Track Mail
The New York Times is reporting that the Bush administration wants to enlist the postal service in its fight in the so-called war on terror. The Senate Intelligence Committee is expected to consider giving the FBI greater power to track mail sent through the postal service. Under one proposal, postal officials would be required to hand over information on the outgoing and incoming mail of anyone connected to foreign intelligence investigations. The FBI would still need a search warrant to actually open the mail.

Protesters Greet Laura Bush In Visit to Middle East
In the Middle East, Israeli hecklers greeted First Lady Laura Bush during her visit Sunday to the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem. The protesters demanded that the U.S. release the Jewish-American spy Jonathan Pollard from jail. Armed Israeli security personnel were forced to lock arms and form a human blockade in order to keep the protesters away from the First Lady who was surrounded by Secret Service agents. Later in the day an Israeli SWAT team was called in to calm Palestinian protests while Laura Bush visited the Al-Aqsa Mosque.

Army Recruiter Arrested For Raping Recruit
In Florida, an Army recruiter has been arrested for raping a potential recruit. According to police, the rape occurred after the recruiter invited the 20-year-old woman to his apartment to take a recruiting exam on his computer.

Amnesty International To Support War Resister Jeremy Hinzman
Amnesty International has announced it will support a U.S. war resister who fled to Canada to avoid fighting in Iraq. The international human rights group said it would consider Jeremy Hinzman to be a prisoner of conscious if he is deported back to the United States and jailed. Hinzman has sought political asylum in Canada but his refugee claim was rejected two months ago. He is now appealing that decision to the Canadian federal court. If Hinzman was forced to return to the United States he would face up to five years in jail.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai To Meet Bush
Afghan President Hamid Karzai is meeting with President Bush today in Washington. Karzai -- as well as the United Nations -- has called for an investigation into new reports of U.S. soldiers abusing detainees in Afghanistan. In one incident, a 22-year-old taxi driver died after being hung from the roof of his cell by his wrists. During his trip to Washington, Karzai is expected to ask Bush to allow the Afghan government to be given more power from the U.S. military. The Observer of London has reported Karzai is facing bitter criticism in Afghanistan for heavy-handed US military tactics.

Family of Killed Football Star Lashes Out At Bush Administration
Meanwhile the family of former professional football player Pat Tillman has lashed out at the Bush administration for lying about the circumstances of Tillman's death in Afghanistan. Tillman made headlines when he quit the NFL to fight after the Sept. 11 attacks. He died last year. The military initially mislead the family into believing he was killed in battle when in fact he was killed by friendly fire. In an interview with the Washington Post, Tillman's mother, Mary, said "The military let him down. The administration let him down. It was a sign of disrespect. The fact that he was the ultimate team player and he watched his own men kill him is absolutely heartbreaking and tragic. The fact that they lied about it afterward is disgusting."

Major Newspaper Show No Photos of Dead U.S. Troops in Iraq
A new review of major US newspapers and magazines has found that the publications are running almost no photographs from Iraq showing U.S. troops killed in action. The Los Angeles Times recently reviewed news reports from September 1st of last year to the end of February of this year. During that period 559 Americans and Western allies died. But readers of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Los Angeles Times, New York Times, St. Louis Post-Dispatch and Washington Post never saw a single picture of a dead serviceman in their morning papers. Neither did readers of Time nor Newsweek. Steve Stroud, deputy director of photography at the Los Angeles Times said "I feel we still aren't seeing the kind of pictures we need to see to tell the American people about this war and the costs of the war." Veteran war photographer Chris Hondros added "I think if we are going to start a war, we ought to be willing to show the consequences of that war."

Chavez Calls For U.S. To Extradite Posada
Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez has threatened to cut off diplomatic ties to Washington if the Bush administration refuses to hand over Luis Posada Carriles. Posada is the Cuban-born militant tied to the 1976 bombing of a commercial airliner. Posada is still wanted in Venezuela on terrorism charges. Chavez says Washington would be guilty of protecting international terrorism if it refused extraditing Posada.

Secret Report Raises Fears Over GM Crops
The Independent of London is reporting that a new scientific study carried out by Monsantao raises new fears over the safety of genetically modified corn. The study -- which the company has tried to keep secret -- found that rats fed genetically modified corn developed abnormalities to internal organs and changes to the composition of their blood.

Farmworkers Group To Focus on More Fast Food Chains
In labor news -- the Coalition of Immokalee Workers is focusing its organizing efforts on more fast food restaurants following its successful campaign against Taco Bell. The farmworkers group led a three-year campaign to force Taco Bell to help improve working conditions for tomato pickers. Now the group is calling on McDonald's, Subway and Burger King to follow Taco Bell's lead.

Ex-Black Panther to Run For Mayor in Georgia
The former chairman of the Black Panther Party -- Elaine Brown -- is seeking political office. She has announced her candidacy for mayor of the city of Brunswick, Georgia.

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Bearing Witness: War Correspondent Janine di Giovanni On Reporting From the Battleground

"In the 1990s, a series of violent wars kept coming, like wave after brutal wave," says di Giovanni. "I was part of an elite, tight band of international reporters – a tribe, really – who roamed the earth, working from front lines or cities under siege. In those days, we rarely wore flak jackets. But we believed in the stories we were reporting, in the importance of bearing witnesses to evil regimes, to ethnic cleansing, to genocide and systematic rape. After Israel came Bosnia. After Bosnia, Rwanda. Liberia. Congo. Chechnya. Sierra Leone. East Timor. Ivory Coast. Zimbabwe. Somalia. Afghanistan. Iraq." [includes rush transcript]

Hip Hop Historian Davey D on "The Clear Channeling" of America

Over 2,000 people converged in St. Louis, Missouri last weekend for the second-ever National Conference on Media Reform. Among the keynote speakers was journalist, hip hop historian and radio DJ, Davey D of Pacifica Radio station KPFA. He spoke about the "Clear Channleing" of America and the hip hop generation. [includes rush transcript]


Sunday, May 22, 2005

The Blueprint - Volume 1: Seeds - PART SIX: Narrow The Enemies List

"We have to stop screwing people based on a fantasy."

(wait, that's not quite right.)

"We have to go back and forth until we find the sweet spot."

(wait, that one's a little strange too...)

"We have to realize that in your mind, nothing can harm you."

(wait, what if you're crazy?)

(aw crap.)

(damn quote machine is busted.)


The Blueprint - Volume 1: Seeds - PART SIX: Narrow The Enemies List

(because really, it's just a good idea.)


Boxcar Willy vs. Rockstar Rummy: Round One

Who do we respect?



Boxcar Willy vs. Rockstar Rummy: Round Two

Who's doing less?

Who's doing more?

Who's doing what for whom?

Who's doing what to whom?

Who's doing more good?

Who's doing more bad?

Who is more accomplished?

Who likes what they've accomplished?

Who dislikes what they've accomplished?

Who cares what they're doing?

Who should?


Boxcar Willy vs. Rockstar Rummy: Round Three

On a scale of one to a billion, with one being an amoeba, and a billion being a billion people you could kill, who has more responsibility? Who can barf on a paramecium without either batting a cilia?

Who can launch a war for the fun (and profit) of it 2 years ago, and still keep his job poorly fighting that war for the next 4 years? Who can choose to sleep in a boxcar 2 years ago, and still choose to be sleeping there 4 years later?

Who is more erudite, educated, and evil?

Who is more insane, incorrigable, and inconsequential?

Who is actions have caused more damage to the world?

Who believes who's actions are justified?

Who has the right to believe what actions are justified?

Who had the right to tell someone what to do?

Who has the right to kill?

Who has the right to live?

Who kills?

Who lives?


3rd Round: TKO


"Oh, my, god. Becky, look at her butt."
- Sir Mix-a-Lot, (Intro) "Baby Got Back" , 1992

"I like big butts and I can not lie."
- Sir Mix-a-Lot, "Baby Got Back" , 1992


"Enamoured with the voluptuous figures of stars such as Jennifer Lopez and Beyonce Knowles, many British women are deciding to part with the cash needed to swell their lower curves..."
- The New Zealand Herald, "Demand grows for J Lo nip ‘n’ butt ops." 2/May/2005

"The phenomenal rise of the "rump plump" - demand for which has increased tenfold over the past two years..."
- The New Zealand Herald, "Demand grows for J Lo nip ‘n’ butt ops." 2/May/2005

"Since Jennifer Lopez came into the field, people have begun to really like that South American-style shape..."
- (Dr. Jeya Prakash) The New Zealand Herald, "Demand grows for J Lo nip ‘n’ butt ops." 2/May/2005

"The procedure itself, which can take as little as 40 minutes..."- The New Zealand Herald, "Demand grows for J Lo nip ‘n’ butt ops." 2/May/2005

"A leading surgeon would typically charge between 6000 ($15,600) and 9000 ($23,500) for the operation."
- The New Zealand Herald, "Demand grows for J Lo nip ‘n’ butt ops." 2/May/2005


Reporter: "What do you think of western civilization?"

Mahatma Gandhi: "I think it would be a good idea."


"Who watches The Watchmen?"
- Alan Moore, "The Watchmen", 1986


"Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?"
- Juvenal, "Satires", 120 A.D.


"Time 4 black gloves,
At least,
Check out ya riding..."

- Black Krishna, Song: "Go!", 2005


"Gotta take the bile,
Outta bitchin', 'bout,

- Black Krishna, Song: "Bitchin' Bout Bullshit", 2005


"Them crazy, them crazy -
We gonna chase those crazy
Baldheads out of town..."

- Bob Marley, "Crazy Baldheads", 1976


Paris Hilton seems like a genuinely nice person.

I've never heard her utter a cross-word about anyone.

Pamela Anderson neither.

Anna Nicole Smith?


She's crazy...

And she's a goldigger...

Though she was digging it out of a living corpse who'd spent hours in love watching her dance at a Houston strip club...

And that's after she dropped out of high school and worked as a cook at Jim's Krispy Fried Chicken...

And now she's got:

The Anna Nicole Show: First Season" DVD

Uncensored. Uncut. Unreal. It's Luxurious! The First Season DVD of The Anna Nicole Show. It's America's Guiltiest Pleasure.

- 3-disc DVD set
- Special Collector's Packaging
- Not Rated - Uncensored
- Closed Captioned
- Running Time: Approx. 4 hours, 53 minutes

Special Features:
- Never-Before-Seen uncensored episodes
- Deleted scenes from every episode
- Tell all commentary by Anna Nicole


Makes your head hurt?

Don't worry about it.

You go girl.


"I'm a hustler, I'm a-I'm a hustler homey,
I'm a hustler, I'm a-I'm a hustler homey,
Nigga ask a... nigga-nigga ask about me,
Nigga ask a... nigga-nigga ask about me..."

- Cassidy f. Jay-Z, "I'm a Hustler", 2005


Hell, even 50 Cent used to be a crack-dealer on the streets of New York.

Nah man, that ain't cool.

Hell, even 50 Cent got shot nine times.

Nah man, that ain't cool.

He survived it all.

Hey man, that's cool.

Even Eminem and Dr. Dre like him.



Italy in recession but porn industry booming-study

By Philip Pullella
Thu May 19, 8:26 AM ET

It put revenues for pornography and related industries at about 1.1 billion euros ($1.4 billion) in 2004, up by some 100 million euros over the previous year and 27 percent since 1991.



Porn star to dine with Bush
Ex-candidate for governor sees it as 'great networking opportunity'

May 20, 2005

"I'm especially looking forward to meeting Karl Rove," Carey added. "Smart men like him are so sexy. I know that he's against gay marriage, but I think I can convince him that a little girl-on-girl action now and then isn't so bad!"



Two days of erotica unlimited

May 22, 2005

"This is bigger than the NFL, the NBA and Major League Baseball combined. It's sick." In sizing the sex industry market at $40 billion, the organizers include topless clubs, exotic dancing, sex toys, party goods, books and pornographic movies.



Okay, that's not it.

Can we treat this issue with some maturity?


Patterns of Global Terrorism

Patterns of Global Terrorism is a report published each year on or before April 30 by the United States Department of State. The Secretary of State is required by Congress to produce detailed assessments.

The exact definition of the requirements are in Title 22, Section 2656f of the United States Code.

Year Acts Killed Wounded

2004 NA NA NA
2003 208 625 3646
2002 199 725 2013
2001 346 3547 1080
2000 423 405 791
1999 392 233 706
1998 273 741 5952
1997 304 221 693
1996 296 311 2652
1995 440 165 6291

2004: The report was no longer published to the public after its methodology was challenged by the administration, amid claims that it showed the highest amount of terror activity in its nineteen year history.



"To call terrorism a threat to national security is scarcely plausible, on average far fewer Americans are killed each year by terrorists than are killed by lightning, deer accidents, or peanut allergies."
- John Mueller and Karl Mueller, "Sanctions of Mass Destruction," Foreign Affairs, May/June 1999, p. 43



"Be, All That You Can Be..." Somewhere else, this place kinda blows... (trust me)

Yahoo! News

Army may be facing exodus of young officers

Officers Plot Exit Strategy

By Mark Mazzetti
L.A. Times Staff Writer
Sun May 22, 7:55 AM ET

KILLEEN, Texas — Army Capts. Dave Fulton and Geoff Heiple spent 12 months dodging roadside bombs and rounding up insurgents along Baghdad's "highway of death" — the six miles of pavement linking downtown Baghdad to the capital city's airport. Two weeks after returning stateside to Ft. Hood, they ventured to a spartan conference room at the local Howard Johnson to find out about changing careers.

Lured by a headhunting firm that places young military officers in private-sector jobs, the pair, both 26, expected anonymity in the crowded room.

Instead, as Fulton and Heiple sipped Budweisers pulled from Styrofoam coolers next to the door, they spotted nearly a dozen familiar faces from their cavalry battalion, which had just ended a yearlong combat tour in Iraq.

The shocks of recognition came as they exchanged quick, awkward glances with others from their unit, each man clearly surprised to see someone else considering a life outside the military.

"This is a real eye-opener," said Fulton, a West Point graduate who saw a handful of cadets from his class. "It seems like everyone in the room is either from my squad or from my class."

More than three years after the Sept. 11 attacks spawned an era of unprecedented strain on the all-volunteer military, it is scenes like this that keep the Army's senior generals awake at night. With thousands of soldiers currently on their second combat deployment in Iraq or Afghanistan and some preparing for their third this fall, evidence is mounting that an exodus of young Army officers may be looming on the horizon.

It is especially troubling for Pentagon officials that the Army's pool of young captains, which forms the backbone of infantry and armored units deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan, could be the hardest hit.



BONUS: "Surf's Up!"


Protesters Heckle Laura Bush in Jerusalem

Associated Press Writer
1 hour, 54 minutes ago

JERUSALEM - Laura Bush waded into Middle East tensions on Sunday during chaotic visits to sacred religious sites, where crowds and hecklers grew so rowdy that armed guards had to restrain them.

America's first lady said what she witnessed showed that passions are running high among Palestinians and Israelis. "The United States will do what they can in this process," she said, urging both sides to work for peace.

Before entering the ruins of an 8th-century palace in the West Bank town of Jericho, Mrs. Bush told reporters, "As you can tell from our day here, this is a place of emotion, everywhere we went, from the Western Wall to the Dome of the Rock to here."

At the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest shrine, protesters demanded that the U.S. release of an American Jew imprisoned for spying for Israel. At her stop nearby at the Dome of the Rock, she faced heckling from angry Palestinians. One man yelled, "How dare you come in here! Why your husband kill Muslim?"



U.S., Iraq Troops Launch Baghdad Offensive

Associated Press Writer
15 minutes ago

BAGHDAD, Iraq - Seven Iraqi battalions backed by U.S. forces launched an offensive in the capital on Sunday in an effort to stanch the violence that has killed more than 550 people in less than a month, targeting insurgents who have attacked the dangerous road to Baghdad's airport and Abu Ghraib prison.

Aides to a radical anti-American Shiite cleric, meanwhile, sought to defuse tension between Sunnis and the majority Shiites after a recent series of sectarian killings.

Iraq's government took the diplomatic offensive, joining the United States in its oft-repeated demands that Syria close its porous border to foreign fighters.

A senior Iraqi Trade Ministry official was killed in an ongoing terror campaign that has killed more than 550 people in less than one month.



Gas Prices Drop by Average of 6 Cents

1 hour, 10 minutes ago

CAMARILLO, Calif. - The average gasoline price nationwide for all grades tumbled 6 cents in two weeks, continuing a slide in pump prices that began last month, an industry analyst said Sunday.



U.S. Forces Kill 12 Rebels in Afghanistan

Associated Press Writer
2 hours, 10 minutes ago

KABUL, Afghanistan - U.S. airstrikes and ground troops killed 12 insurgents who had attacked a coalition patrol in eastern Afghanistan's border region in the latest wave of fighting with Taliban-led rebels, the U.S. military said Sunday.

The United Nations called for Afghan human rights investigators to be allowed into Bagram, the main U.S. base in Afghanistan, after the New York Times reported poorly trained U.S. soldiers there had repeatedly abused prisoners.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai, on the eve of his Monday meeting with President Bush in Washington, said he was angry about the reported abuse and called for more Afghan control over the operations of the 16,700 U.S. troops in his country as well as punishment for any U.S. soldiers who mistreat prisoners.



'Star Wars' earns $108.5 million in first U.S. weekend

Sunday May 22, 3:03PM ET

George Lucas' final "Star Wars" movie scored the second-best three-day weekend of all time on Sunday, but the Force was not strong enough to prevent overall ticket sales in North America from posting a year-on-year-decline for the 13th consecutive weekend.

"Star Wars: Episode III -- Revenge of the Sith" sold an estimated $108.5 million worth of tickets for the Friday-to-Sunday period, taking its total to $158.5 million since it opened after midnight on Thursday.

Its four-day haul sets a new record, surpassing the $134.3 million tally of 2003's "The Matrix Reloaded." Its Thursday tally of $50 million also set a one-day record, beating the $44.8 million sum for "Shrek 2" last year.

The three-day weekend record is held by "Spider-Man," which opened to almost $115 million in 2002. "Revenge of the Sith" narrowly pipped "Shrek 2," which opened with $108 million. Rankings could change when final data are issued on Monday.



Third House panel begins steroids inquiry with letters to leagues

AP Sports Writer
May 20, 2005

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A third congressional committee opened an investigation into steroids in U.S. sports, asking Major League Baseball, the NBA, NFL, NHL and their unions to turn over documents about their drug programs.

House Judiciary Committee chairman James Sensenbrenner, a Wisconsin Republican, and ranking Democrat John Conyers of Michigan sent 13 letters Friday asking for ``any and all policies, protocols, guidance, instructions, standards, methods, e-mail messages, and memoranda explaining or describing (your) anti-doping efforts.''

The Judiciary Committee plans to have the information it receives from the leagues analyzed by a nonpartisan research arm of the Library of Congress.

``This is the broadest, most comprehensive investigation planned by any committee and is being performed by a neutral entity,'' Conyers said. ``This should equip ... the Judiciary Committee with the information we need to oversee and consider possible legislation in this arena.''

The House Government Reform Committee and a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee already were carrying out separate inquiries into steroid use.

``The more the merrier. This is an important issue, and we're glad other committees agree,'' said Dave Marin, spokesman for Government Reform chairman Tom Davis, a Virginia Republican.



San Antonio 121, Phoenix 114

AP Sports Writer
May 22, 2005

AP - May 22, 6:54 pm EDT

PHOENIX (AP) -- Although they're still known for defense, the San Antonio Spurs might soon start convincing people to respect their offense, too.

They certainly proved it Sunday to the scoring experts in Phoenix.

With Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Brent Barry leading the way, the Spurs outscored the league's top offensive team down the stretch, beating the Suns 121-114 in the opener of the Western Conference finals.

The first playoff series featuring the league's highest-scoring offense against the stingiest defense was supposed to be a contrast of styles, but San Antonio turned the tables instead. Coach Gregg Popovich has been saying that his team's scoring ability was underrated -- and they wasted no time proving it.

Despite ankle problems, Duncan helped the Spurs score 30 points in the first quarter and 55 in the first half. Even when their 11-point lead turned into an 8-point deficit in the third quarter -- when things looked to be falling in place for Phoenix -- San Antonio answered with an 11-0 run. They sealed it by scoring 43 points in the fourth quarter.

SOURCE -;_ylc=X3oDMTBpYTg2ZTBwBF9TAzk1ODYxOTQ4BHNlYwN0bQ--?gid=2005052221


Most Iran Reform Candidates Disqualified

Associated Press Writer
2 hours, 21 minutes ago

TEHRAN, Iran - Iran's hard-line constitutional watchdog has rejected all reformists who registered to run in next month's presidential elections, approving only six out of the 1,010 hopefuls, state-run television reported Sunday.

The announcement prompted a crisis meeting by reformers, who immediately threatened to boycott the election.

"We are warning the Guardian Council that we will not participate in the election if it doesn't reverse its decision," Rajabali Mazrouei, a top member of the reformist Islamic Iran Participation Front, told The Associated Press.

"Barring reform candidates means there will be no free or fair election," he said.

There was similar outrage last year when the Council — which supervises the elections — disqualified more than 2,000 reformists from legislative elections, leading to a low turnout. Reformists denounced that vote as a "historical fiasco."

The council's announcement, however, appeared to be the final decision and effectively leaves reformers seeking democratic changes within the ruling Islamic establishment without a candidate.



Reclusive 'Mockingbird' Author Appears

Sun May 22, 1:49 PM ET

LOS ANGELES - Harper Lee, who has been dodging publicity for decades since she published her only book, "To Kill a Mockingbird," made a rare step into the limelight to be honored by the Los Angeles Public Library.

Lee, 79, stopped giving interviews a few years after she won the Pulitzer Prize for her 1960 coming-of-age book exploring racial prejudice in the South. She has turned down most request for appearances.

But she couldn't refuse an invitation from Veronique Peck, the widow of actor Gregory Peck, who won an Oscar for his starring role as lawyer Atticus Finch in the 1962 film version of the book and became a lifelong friend with Lee.

"Mockingbird" co-star Brock Peters, who played the black man falsely accused of rape in the film, presented the award to Lee.

After Veronique Peck whispered in her ear, Lee gave her only remarks of the evening: "I'll say it again. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart."

Veronique Peck said Lee is "like a national treasure."

"She's someone who has made a difference with this book," she said. "All the kids in the United States read this book and see the film in the seventh and eighth grades and write papers and essays. My husband used to get thousands and thousands of letters from teachers who would send them to him."

She said Atticus Finch was her husband's "favorite role, and he felt that in his professional life, it was probably the best performance he ever gave."

The awards dinner Thursday drew more than 600 supporters and raised $700,000 for computers, computer training and literacy programs.



Hecklers Target Ariel Sharon in New York

Associated Press Writer
16 minutes ago

NEW YORK - Visiting Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon was heckled during a speech to Jewish leaders on Sunday, and about 1,500 demonstrators staged a noisy street protest against the Gaza disengagement plan he was defending.

Several protesters stood up during Sharon's speech, one shouting "Jews don't expel Jews." The prime minister had to pause when the interruption grew louder and the protesters were escorted out of the Baruch College auditorium in Manhattan. He then received a warm ovation from the crowd.

Under Sharon's plan, Israel will remove all 21 Jewish settlements in Gaza and withdraw from four small settlements in the West Bank beginning in mid-August.

"I said in the past, and I say it also today: I am willing to make painful compromises for peace," Sharon said. "I think that the entire world can now see how hard such compromises are. There is one thing on which we will not make any compromises — not now and not in the future — and that is our security."

Sharon's opponents accuse him of caving in to Palestinian violence and warn the moves will lead to further territorial concessions. Many protesters wore orange T-shirts Sunday, the color adopted by Gaza settlers who oppose his plan.

Security was tight for Sharon's visit, as police barricaded sidewalks to prevent protesters from getting too close to the auditorium. Chants of "Never again!" and "Let our people stay!" reached a crescendo when Sharon's motorcade passed through an intersection 100 yards away.

"To retreat in the face of terrorism is to invite more of it — not less," Rabbi Yosef Yitzchok Jacobson shouted during the street rally. "What have these Jews done to be thrown out? Why are they being expelled? Why not expel the terrorists?" he said.

Sharon arrived in New York for a three-day visit to the United States to bolster ties with American Jews, but also to discuss domestic issues like the plan to pull out of the Gaza Strip.



Ex-Guantanamo Prisoner Was Troubled Youth

Associated Press Writer
1 hour, 17 minutes ago

LONDON - A former Guantanamo prisoner says he battled shyness, loneliness and suicide attempts before discovering Islam on a backpacking trip through Europe, according to a handwritten biography that paints a picture of a troubled London youth.

Feroz Abbasi's 100-plus page account is one of the most detailed written personal stories from a former detainee. He submitted it to a tribunal at the U.S. prison camp in Cuba.

The document was among nearly 2,000 pages of tribunal testimonies that the U.S. government released to The Associated Press under a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit.

Shy around girls and hobbled by low self-esteem, Abbasi's melancholy memoirs begin in London where he was raised in an Arab family disconnected from its roots. He doesn't identify his national heritage, but describes himself as a restless boy with an "insecurity complex."