November 13, 2010 archive

Art Sale?


Some of you know that one of our cats died expensively recently.  She did not suffer for long.  It was twenty days between the diagnosis of cancer and her passing.

But the diagnosis was in the area of $2K.  What with Debbie no longer having a fulltime job and my medical expenses (even with insurance, these can be costly), we are not left with much in the way of funds to celebrate Xmas.  In fact, we’re pretty much one step ahead of the creditors and they are closing in.

Next week we have to see a lawyer because a former landlady is suing us for $15K because she rented us an apartment in bad condition and we didn’t miraculously repair everything.

So currently we are living from paycheck to paycheck and not quite making it.

Birds of a Feather – The Exclusionary Clause

Exploitation Capitalism takes more forms than you can imagine. In writing “Clueless Class” I began to brush the surface of just how deep, just how ingrained our thinking is, so much so, that some on the “Left” went ballistic defending their well-to-do Investment Class Liberalism.

Skimming the quagmire that is all things I/P on dKos, and a few other putrid places I loathe to admit being an occasional voyeur to, I ran headlong into one of the biggest mental fortresses that both the left and right share.

In essence? It is the idea that “we” should be able to live where ever “we” want to, and look how much “better off” this place is because of us! It is about “enclaves” and “neighborhoods” and walls, both concrete and economic. It’s about cultural appropriation and cultural segregation. It’s about tourism and settlements, and the exceptionalism so ingrained in our psyches we cannot possibly objectively view the impact of our thinking. Its about gentrification by “cheap living” and ultimately about the colonialist mindset that we damn in history, but refuse to admit is still alive and thriving within our Western Mindset.

It’s mostly about melanin and birds of a feather and cages both illusory and real.


Open Feat


Docudharma Times Sunday November 14

Sunday’s Headlines:

Shooting star show’s brilliant history


Karzai wants U.S. to reduce military operations in Afghanistan

Just an ugly lump of rock? Not quite. It happens to be worth $1bn


Ireland’s young flee abroad as economic meltdown looms

Sergei Magnitsky: family remember Russian lawyer one year after his death

Middle East

Allawi’s Sunni-backed bloc returns to parliament after walkout

Israel to debate US settlement deal


Exclusive: Afghanistan – behind enemy lines

Bangladesh strikes after eviction


The doctor who heals victims of Congo’s war rapes

Latin America

Haiti: Where is the UN? Where is the help?

Burma’s Suu Kyi tells followers not to give up hope

Burmese pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi has urged thousands of her supporters not to give up hope, a day after her release from house arrest.

The BBC  14 November 2010

“There is no reason to lose heart,” she told a crowd outside the headquarters of her NLD party in Rangoon.

Ms Suu Kyi was released by the military when her sentence ended on Saturday.

World leaders and human rights groups have welcomed her release. She has spent 15 of the last 21 years either under house arrest or in prison.

On Sunday, Ms Suu Kyi’s car was surrounded by a large crowd of supporters as it approached the NLD’s headquarters.

People chanted “We love Suu”, amid thunderous applause..

Docudharma Times Saturday November 13

Saturday’s Headlines:

Rescue Workers Train in the Disneyland of Terror


I.R.S. Sits on Data Pointing to Missing Children

Opposition to U.S. trial likely to keep mastermind of 9/11 attacks in detention


Wanted: ideas for how to kick-start Paris nightlife

Merkel would lose an election, poll reveals

Middle East

The village built on thorny ground

Middle East doves energized by election


More questions than answers on a day of many rumours but no release


South Africa’s white farmers expand into Mozambique

Revealed: Shell’s PR tricks in Nigeria

Latin America

Teotihuacan ruins explored by a robot

Pacific leaders pledge to pursue free trade

U.S., China, Japan put aside differences as Obama wraps 10-day trip

Associated Press  

YOKOHAMA, Japan – Leaders of the world’s three biggest economies – the U.S., China and Japan – all pledged Saturday to stick to free trade, apparently putting aside acrimony over currencies that has threatened to revive pressures for protectionism.

The vows against backsliding toward retaliatory trade moves came at an annual summit of Pacific Rim leaders, just a day after a fractious summit of the Group of 20 major economies in South Korea.

Discussion After Premier of “Wartorn 1861 – 2010”

DCoE – Defense Centers of Excellence

11 November 2010 – Military leaders, vets discuss invisible wounds of war and getting help after viewing HBO documentary about PTSD

HBO’s Wartorn 1861 – 2010

Late Night Karaoke

Joe Biden Saves Iraq!

“I saved Iraq!”

Hoping to rebut criticism that it had lost influence in Iraq and was too passive over the eight months since the March election there, or that its efforts were designed to keep Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki in power, the administration offered a detailed written account of previously unreported meetings, visits and calls it said Biden and others had made.

Biden, Obama’s point man on Iraq, telephoned Kurdish leader Massoud Barzani, a key figure in the negotiations, as often as several times a week, according to the administration timeline.

“Hello, Massoud? This is Joe Biden!”


“Joe Biden, Vice-President of the United States, and Barack Obama’s point man on Iraq!”

“Okay, if you say so. What have you got for me?”

“Nothing! But me and the President would be really, really happy if you Iraqis could form a government, nine months after the election!”

“Aren’t you the same guy who called yesterday? Give it a rest already!”

Apart from a couple of idiots like Biden and Obama, who the heck would want to claim any influence in Iraq?

Sixteen car bombs and road-side bombs detonated across Baghdad on Tuesday evening, prompting the government to declare a security alert and impose snap bans on vehicles.

More than 70 people were killed and 250 wounded in the blasts on Tuesday. At least 58 people, most of them attending mass, were killed and 75 wounded after a team of gunmen stormed the Catholic church and Iraqi special forces attempted a rescue Sunday.

That’s just in Baghdad, where the so-called “government” has the most control, and elsewhere nobody even counts the bodies.  

Original v. Cover — #51 in a Series

Flip Flops Pictures, Images and Photos

Are you convinced that the best rock music ever was produced in the 1960s and possibly the early 1970s as well?  Ever wonder why?  

The 1999 film “The Straight Story”, resulting from a rather unlikely collaboration between David Lynch and Disney, recounts the true story of a real life Iowa septuagenarian Alvin Straight. In 1994, his own health declining, he receives word that his estranged brother in Mt. Zion, Wisconsin has suffered a stroke and is seriously ill. Unable to drive because his legs and eyes are too impaired, and unwilling to allow anyone else take him there, he sets out on a 240-mile, six week journey on his garden tractor (top speed = 5 mph), hopeful that he can reach his ailing brother and possibly heal a long-standing rift between the two before it’s too late.  

Friday: Weasel Words

Weasel,short tailed weasel

The Hill


But centrist Democrats say the draft recommendations from the fiscal commission co-chairmen are reasonable. They note the money saved from the proposed reforms would be used to strengthen Social Security and not go toward the general Treasury deficit.

“The recommendations on Social Security fall well within the mainstream of what most progressive organizations that care about Social Security solvency think should be done to save it,” said Jim Kessler, vice president for policy at Third Way, a centrist Democratic think tank. “Everyone believes there should be increases in the retirement age, some adjustment to the cost-of-living adjustments and some increase in revenues.”

Third Way’s Board of Trustees work for companies including Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, Palladium, DGZ Capital, Ospraie Funds,  etc.

Third Way Honorary Co Chairs include: Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas*, Evan Bayh of Indiana*, Thomas Carper of Delaware, Mark Pryor of Arkansas, Claire McCaskill of Missouri, Mark Udall of Colorado, Melissa Bean of Illinois* Artur Davis of Alabama*

*will no longer be in elected office as of January 2009 due to loss or retirement

The Hill


Poll Shows Majority Wants Tax Cuts for Everyone…

A majority says tax cuts should be extended for everyone, which is in line with what Republicans have argued for the past several months, according to a recent poll.

About 53 percent said the Bush-era tax cuts set to expire at the end of the year should be extended for all workers, including higher earners, according to an Associated Press/GfK Poll conducted after last week’s elections.

The AP-GfK Poll was conducted Nov. 3-8 by GfK Roper Public Affairs & Corporate Communications, and involved landline and cell phone interviews with 1,000 adults chosen randomly from across the U.S. It has a margin of sampling error of 4.1 percentage points.

“AP” in AP- GfK is the Associated Press.

Nation Branding: making the country’s values better known, minimize accidents, promote tourism, or attract investors.

  Simon Anholt is a consultant who advises countries on their national identity “brand,” and who invented the phrase “nation branding” in 1998.  Anholt regularly conducts two global surveys known as the Anholt – Gfk Roper Nation Brands Index and Anholt- Gfk Roper City Brands Index. Nation branding is practiced by many countries to manage their international reputations and enhance the perceived value of their exports.  GfK Roper Public Affairs and Media is the official polling partner of the Associated Press and is home based in NYC, offering services to make “market decisions.”

One Year Ago:

Press Release…

New York, October 5, 2009 – Brand America is now ranked #1 by global citizens, according to the GfK Roper Public Affairs & Media, a division of GfK Custom Research North America. Results from the 2009 Anholt-GfK Roper Nation Brands Index(NBI), which measures the global image of 50 countries, show the United States taking the top spot as the country with the best overall brand, up from seventh last year.

“What’s really remarkable is that in all my years studying national reputation, I have never seen any country experience such a dramatic change in its standing as we see for the United States in 2009,” explains Simon Anholt, NBI founder and an independent advisor to over a dozen national governments around the world. “Despite recent economic turmoil, the U.S. actually gained significant ground. The results suggest that the new U.S. administration has been well received abroad and the American electorate’s decision to vote in President Obama has given the United States the status of the world’s most admired country.”

One Month Ago:…

Press Release

New York, USA, October 12, 2010 – The United States continues to lead the world in global image, according to GfK Roper Public Affairs & Corporate Communications…..

Mr. Anholt points out the importance of understanding not only the overall reputation standing of nations, but also individual attributes: “While the United States ranks No. 1 on the overall NBI, it ranks much lower on a few individual questions such as “behaves responsibly in world peace and security” (21st) and “behaves responsibly in protecting the environment” (26th).

Two Months Ago:…

Press Release

New York, USA, September 22, 2010 – The United States is one of the more environmentally cynical nations in the world with only 62% of the population believing that environmental pollution is a serious issue according to the findings from the new Green Gauge Global report from GfK Roper Consulting, a division of GfK Custom Research North America. This ranks the US 24th out of 25 markets around the world – close to dead last.


Feel like your amygdala’s been massaged enough yet ?

King Crimson –The Last 30 Years

DNA evidence shows man may have been wrongly executed by Texas

Claude Jones was executed by Texas on December 7, 2000. He was the 152nd person executed while George W. Bush was governor of Texas. Now, nearly 10 years after his state execution, the single strand of hair used to convict and sentence Jones to death has been found to have belonged to the victim.

Texas may have killed an innocent man.

The Texas Observer reports DNA Tests Undermine Evidence in Texas Execution.

Claude Jones always claimed that he wasn’t the man who walked into an East Texas liquor store in 1989 and shot the owner. He professed his innocence right up until the moment he was strapped to a gurney in the Texas execution chamber and put to death on Dec. 7, 2000. His murder conviction was based on a single piece of forensic evidence recovered from the crime scene-a strand of hair-that prosecutors claimed belonged to Jones.

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