April 20, 2008 archive

Weekend News Digest

Weekend News Digest is an Open Thread

From Yahoo News Top Stories

1 Rice in Iraq, violence surges after Sadr threat

By Sue Pleming, Reuters

1 hour, 38 minutes ago

BAGHDAD (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice backed Iraq’s crackdown on militias in a visit on Sunday to Baghdad, where the worst fighting in weeks erupted after Shi’ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr threatened all-out war.

Rockets blasted the fortified Green Zone compound where Rice met Iraqi officials and praised their month-old campaign against Sadr’s followers.

She had harsh words for the reclusive cleric, who on the eve of Rice’s visit vowed “open war” if the crackdown continues. Sadr has not appeared in public in Iraq in nearly a year.

The Vermont solution: Bill McKibben’s Deep Economy

(crossposted on Big Orange)

This is a new review of Bill McKibben’s book of last year, Deep Economy, from a critical-theory perspective; it’s informed by a fair reading of McKibben’s opus, observance of a recent speaking appearance by the author, and a reading of his DKos diaries.

There are a lot of citations of Bill McKibben on DKos; kudos to hof1991 for an oh-so-brief review, and to Gmoke for his 350 ppm or bust diary.  And of course to Bill McKibben himself.

posted on Flickr by lollyknit

Making music with what you have

One of the things I’ve noticed about bloggers is that, in addition to politics, many seem to be attracted to science fiction. That has never been necessarily true for me. But a few years ago I stumbled on a science fiction trilogy by Suzette Haden Elgin. The first two books in the series, Native Tongue and The Judas Rose really grabbed me. Here’s the publisher’s synopsis for Native Tongue:

Set in the twenty-second century, the novel tells of a world where women are once again property, denied civil rights and banned from public life. Earth’s wealth depends on interplanetary commerce with alien races, and linguists a small, clannish group of families have become the ruling elite by controlling all interplanetary communication. Their women are used to breed perfect translators for all the galaxies’ languages.

Nazareth Chornyak, the most talented linguist of the family,…longs to retire to the Barren House, where women past childbearing age knit, chat, and wait to die. What Nazareth comes to discover is that a slow revolution is going on in the Barren Houses: there, word by word, women are creating a language of their own to free them from men’s control.

So what Elgin does with these two books is to help us understand the role that language can play in both oppression and revolution. One of the very small ways I’ve experienced that is my frustration that our current language has only one word for the verb “to know.” Due to the patriarchal nature of our culture, Women’s Ways of Knowing have been ignored or discounted. I remember what an earth-shattering event it was for me to read that book as an adult and begin the process of reclaiming all that I “knew.”

Pony Party: Sunday music retrospective

Super Session?

Bloomfield and Kooper – Sonny Boy Williamson

Time To Sacrifice, Over 5yrs. To Long Without!!

The first part of this post is especially directed towards those, the greater majority of this country, who do not have any Direct Connection to the Ongoing Occupation Theaters of Iraq and Afganistan, certainly not the Connection of those Serving, Mutiple Tours, and their Families and Close Friends !

The second part will be a Shoutout, and partial repost, with updated information, to All !

Pony Party: Sunday music retrospective

Super Session?

Bloomfield and Kooper – Sonny Boy Williamson

Even Truman Would Turn In His Grave

`In Mishima’s Morning News the lead story by the New York Times is one of the most ‘must reads’ coming  out of the Iraq War. In painstaking detail, the Times shows, with exquisite examples, how the corrupt TV news outlets colluded with the Pentagon to sell and re-sell this war. These News Chiefs, despite claims of innocence go down as war criminals in my book,

But that is not what this diary is about.

Caught a Virus on My Computer

It’s called AOH.  Apparently.

Have you ever had that moment, when it just clicks?  The metaphors and cliches describing the the moment are myriad.  It dawned on me.  I was struck by the notion.       Then I saw it clear as day.

I was reading Booman’s recent observation about the press yet again  seeming to manipulate things in an anti-Obama way. And Boise Lib’s take on finger gate.  And plasticseapolluter’s catch of the job the foreign press is doing on our country’s embrace of torture and terror tactics, while the U.S. media more or less ignores these crimes.  And OPOL’s ode to a love — and to a life as an activist artist.

Docudharma Times Sunday April 20

In the streets there’s no wrong and no right

so forget all that you see

It’s not reality

It’s just a fantasy

Can’t you see

What this crazy life is doing to me

Life is just a fantasy

Sunday’s Headlines:DNA Tests Offer Deeper Examination Of Accused: Military medical malpractice: Seeking recourse: Iraqi cleric threatens ‘open war’: British dealers supply arms to Iran: Beijing gags anti-Western online anger: Tokyo offers free pizza to lure pensioners from their cars: Women in politics: Berlusconi lays into Spain’s ‘too pink’ cabinet: Paper is shut down after report on Vladimir Putin’s love life: Voters flee Zimbabwe’s state terror: Deadly clashes erupt in Mogadishu    

Behind TV Analysts, Pentagon’s Hidden Hand

In the summer of 2005, the Bush administration confronted a fresh wave of criticism over Guantánamo Bay. The detention center had just been branded “the gulag of our times” by Amnesty International, there were new allegations of abuse from United Nations human rights experts and calls were mounting for its closure.

The administration’s communications experts responded swiftly. Early one Friday morning, they put a group of retired military officers on one of the jets normally used by Vice President Dick Cheney and flew them to Cuba for a carefully orchestrated tour of Guantánamo.

To the public, these men are members of a familiar fraternity, presented tens of thousands of times on television and radio as “military analysts” whose long service has equipped them to give authoritative and unfettered judgments about the most pressing issues of the post-Sept. 11 world.

Obama Message Coopted by Pollution Front Group

The Astroturf Organization Formerly Known As ABEC has come out with a doozy of a first ad.

In the battle to protect our future, the alphabet list of astroturf organizations working to undercut a habitable tomorrow is an ever-growing soup.  Tracking the  $35 million+ associated with “Americans for Balanced Energy Choices provided easily full-time employment for some dedicated people.

Perhaps, these astroturfers felt some pressure.  Recently formed, just in time for Earth Day, the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity.

When you hear/see that term, think Clear Skies and other Bushisms … “Clean Coal” is a euphemism for Sort-of Less Dirty Coal, Somewhat Less Polluting Coal, Supposedly Less Deadly Coal.


Celebrate it. I know, I know, everyday is 420, but today it is, uh, like, really 4/20, man. And it’s a full moon too. So light ’em up, listen to this tune and join me after the jump.


Iglesia ……………………………………… Episode 49

(Iglesia is a serialized novel, published on Tuesdays and Saturdays at midnight ET, you can read all of the episodes by clicking on the tag.)

Previous episode

Raised heart rate, shortness of breath, unblinking eyes, the unintentional and unavoidable rumbling rousings of the most primal and ancientest biological systems, (interesting in itself, under these circumstances) tunnel vision excluding everything peripheral to a small corridor bored through space by their eyes. Unquenchable interest. Unbidden but undeniable desire. Tingling.  

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