November 29, 2008 archive

Online Course: Reading Marx’s Capital with David Harvey

From David Harvey’s website

David Harvey is a Distinguished Professor at the City University of New York (CUNY) and author of various books, articles, and lectures. He has been teaching Karl Marx’s Capital for nearly 40 years. Read his CV.

Weekend News Digest

Weekend News Digest is an Open Thread

From Yahoo News Top Stories

1 Bases brace for surge in stress-related disorders

By LOLITA C. BALDOR, Associated Press Writer

Sat Nov 29, 11:34 am ET

FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. – Some 15,000 soldiers are heading home to this sprawling base after spending more than a year at war in Iraq and Afghanistan, and military health officials are bracing for a surge in brain injuries and psychological problems among those troops.

Facing prospects that one in five of the 101st Airborne Division soldiers will suffer from stress-related disorders, the base has nearly doubled its psychological health staff. Army leaders are hoping to use the base’s experiences to assess the long-term impact of repeated deployments.

The three 101st Airborne combat brigades, which have begun arriving home, have gone through at least three tours in Iraq. The 3rd Brigade also served seven months in Afghanistan, early in the war. Next spring, the 4th Brigade will return from a 15-month tour in Afghanistan. So far, roughly 10,000 soldiers have come back; the remainder are expected by the end of January.

Let’s ask Obama to have New Orleans musicians play at the Inaugural

(NOTE: This diary was originally posted on Daily Kos by azureblue, a musician who got his start in New Orleans. Per a request he made to readers in a comment under that diary, I am crossposting it here–because he and I feel this is an idea that needs as much attention and exposure as possible so hopefully Obama will pick up on it.)

The title says it all, but this grew out of a discussion last night about Obama’s love for jazz, and the possibility of him having jazz players at the inauguration:

The Sword’s Edge: Obama And Big Oil

Antonia Juhasz is the author of The Bu$h Agenda: Invading the World, One Economy at a Time and most recently, The Tyranny of Oil: The World’s Most Powerful Industry, and What We Must Do To Stop It.

Juhasz is a policy-analyst and a Fellow with Oil Change International, “a research and advocacy organization that exists to force progress in the energy industry towards an environmentally and socially sustainable energy future”, and the Institute for Policy Studies, a policy studies non-profit think-tank for progressive or liberal causes based in Washington, D.C. IPS work is organized into over a dozen projects, all working collaboratively and strategically to pursue three overarching policy goals: Peace, Justice and the Environment.

She has taught at the New College of California in the Activism and Social Change Masters Program and as a guest lecturer on U.S. Foreign Policy at the McMaster University Labour Studies Program in a unique educational program with the Canadian Automobile Workers Union, and lives in San Francisco.

Today Antonia talks with Sharmini Peries of the The Real News about whether or not Barack Obama is likely to buck, or back, the most powerful corporations in the world, and whether he’ll continue the same foreign policies that have over the past 60 odd years of “pragmatic” conservative US imperialism nearly brought the empire to it’s knees, drastically lowering the amount of expenditures on liberal social policies.

Real News: November 29 – 7 min 37 sec

Will Obama reign in big oil?

Antonia Juhasz: Clinton-era deregulation helped big oil get bigger

Hat tips to NL for raising the discussion of pragmatism this morning, and to KJ for my title. 🙂

Obama’s previous gig as president

By now we all know that Barack Obama went to Harvard Law school and was the first African American President of the Law Review in 1990 when he was 28 years old. His tenure in that position might give us some clues as to who this man is and how he will lead. I’ve been doing some reading about that time in his life and find it pretty instructive.

For example, the LA Times reprinted an article by Tammerlin Drummond from back in March of 1990 not long after Obama was elected to the position. She starts off with this interesting information.

The post, considered the highest honor a student can attain at Harvard Law School, almost always leads to a coveted clerkship with the U.S. Supreme Court after graduation and a lucrative offer from the law firm of one’s choice.

Yet Obama, who has gone deep into debt to meet the $25,000-a-year cost of a Harvard Law School education, has left many in disbelief by asserting that he wants neither.

“One of the luxuries of going to Harvard Law School is it means you can take risks in your life,” Obama said recently. “You can try to do things to improve society and still land on your feet. That’s what a Harvard education should buy-enough confidence and security to pursue your dreams and give something back.”


Docudharma Times Saturday November 29

Could The Good Old Days Return?

Let’s Hope Not

Saturday’s Headlines:

No sympathy for Detroit at a Kia plant in Georgia

Coup fears rise after Thai PM sacks police chief

Inside room 2115: ‘We climbed into the bath and hid under some pillows’

Down to their last hundred million but Russia’s elite still enjoy fun of the fair

Grand chieftain of anthropology lives to see his centenary

War in Iraq ends for international forces

OPEC struggles to find balance in oil market

Ethiopian troops to leave Somalia

Former South African addict helps others kick the habit – by surfing

In Mexico, Casita Linda is building hope

The Times OF India

Battle for Mumbai ends, death toll rises to 195

29 Nov 2008, 1304 hrs IST, AGENCIES

MUMBAI: Security forces freed the landmark Taj hotel here after an intense night-long firing amid a series of explosions, with three terrorists gunned down by the commandos, authorities said this morning. “Three terrorists have been killed but we are still continuing our operations,” Director General of NSG, J K Dutt, told reporters outside the hotel.

Mumbai disaster official R Jadhav told that 195 people had been killed and nearly 300 injured in the battle, which began when the dozen or so militants split into groups to attack multiple targets across the city, including the main railway station and a hospital.  

The operation to flush out terrorists from Taj Hotel is over, signalling an end to the 62-hour siege by terrorists three of whom were killed this morning in an assault by the elite commandos of National Security Guards (NSG).

Security chiefs fear revamped version of 70s-style violence

Head-on attacks on soft targets by small, well-trained gangs will be harder to detect and to stop, say intelligence officials

Richard Norton-Taylor, Saturday November 29 2008 00.01 GMT

Western intelligence officials yesterday expressed concern about the security implications of the Mumbai attacks for their own cities as they confronted the prospect of new tactics being adopted by highly trained and motivated terrorists.

They contrasted the Mumbai attacks with suicide and car bombers who have plotted outrages in London. The latter have been mainly self-radicalised, self-selected groups of individuals, slowly gathering bomb-making equipment and vulnerable to surveillance by the security services, counter-terrorist officials said.

In contrast, they said, the group who attacked Mumbai were armed with rifles and grenades and stormed their targets in the city head-on.



National Security Pick: From a Marine to a Mediator


Published: November 28, 2008

WASHINGTON – James L. Jones, a retired four-star general, was among a mostly Republican crowd watching a presidential debate in October when Barack Obama casually mentioned that he got a lot of his advice on foreign policy from General Jones.

“Explain yourself!” some of the Republicans demanded, as General Jones later recalled it.

He did not. A 6-foot-5 Marine Corps commandant with the looks of John Wayne, General Jones is not given to talking about his political bent, be it Republican or Democrat. And yet, he is Mr. Obama’s choice for national security adviser, a job that will make him the main foreign policy sounding board and sage to a president with relatively little foreign policy experience.

Life on a Ranch

There is one blog…one place…that consistently reassured me through the long, dark days of unemployment.  No politics…but I know where to find political blogs, lol.  

Gathering Cattle in November from Pioneer Woman on Vimeo.

Late Night Karaoke

Say What You Must

Smoosh – Make It Through

Random Japan

Cowboy Bebop Metallic Rain

Strange days

A former scaffolding worker was arrested for robbing an apartment in Shibuya by climbing down a drainpipe from the roof of the four-story building. The 36-year-old man had been dubbed Heisei no Musasabi (“flying squirrel of the Heisei Era”) for an earlier string of robberies.

Panasonic’s recent merger with Sanyo was apparently foretold last year in a manga called Senmu Shima Kosaku, which chronicles the travails of a fictional businessman who works for a company based on Panasonic.

A Japanese lunar exploration satellite has discovered that volcanic eruptions on the far side of the moon lasted 500 million years longer than previously thought.

A judge in Hokkaido told a man who received five years’ worth of disability payments by falsely claiming he was blind to stop “hamming it up” in court. The man, a 51-year-old resident of Sapporo, was sentenced to four years in prison.

The Japan Business Federation announced that ¥5.85 trillion could be saved each year if the country was divided into ten large geographical blocks instead of the current 47 prefectures.


A series on patterns should obviously start with a shot including multiple patterns.

The first one has weathered wood patterns, & a tortoise shell pattern on the snail shell. (ironic)

The wood grain pattern on the knife handle, which has a serrated blade pattern upon which a snail with it`s unusual skin pattern glides, rounds out the first image.

The rest follow in random pattern.



Funky Friday

Since Budhy has abdicated his responsibility to provide:

Friday Funk for His Friends

it looks like i’m going to have to start things off with Cat.

Pony Party: Leftovers

Cold Turkey – Plastic Ono Band

Yoko doing her best turkey impression — a little scary.

Mashed Potato Time – Dee Dee Sharp

and what are mashed potatoes without the ….

Gravy – Dee Dee Sharp

for dessert …

Apples, Peaches, Pumpkin Pie – Jay and the Techniques

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