12/31/2004

New Year 2005

Rio


Sidney


Athens


Paris


London


Indonesia

One of the highest tsunamis on record

RADIO FREE EUROPE/ RADIO LIBERTY: "One of the highest tsunamis on record occurred in a remote Alaskan bay in 1958, when an earthquake and subsequent landslide sparked a wave that reached an incredible 520 meters -- nearly twice the size of the Eiffel Tower. "

Prehistoric Asteroid "Killed Everything"

Scientists have found traces of an asteroid-collision event that they say would have created a giant tsunami that swept around the Earth several times, inundating everything except the mountains. The coastline of the continents was changed drastically and almost all life on land was exterminated.



This cataclysm some 3.5 billion years ago is the earliest known meteor strike to hit the Earth, and one of at least four that have been identified in a geologically brief 300-million-year period. The strike is the subject of an article published in the current issue of the journal Science by Louisiana State University geologist Gary Byerly and others.



Prehistoric Asteroid "Killed Everything"

WSAW | Tsunami Hits Close to Home

Tsunami waves are shallow-water waves with long periods and wave lengths. (A wave is classified a shallow-water wave when the ratio between the water depth and its wavelength gets very small. The speed of a shallow-water wave is equal to the square root of the product of the acceleration of gravity (32ft/sec/sec or 980cm/sec/sec) and the depth of the water.) Shallow water waves are different from wind-generated waves (the waves many of us have observed on the beach). Wind-generated waves usually have period (time between two succesional waves) of five to twenty seconds and a wavelength (distance between two successional waves) of about 50 to 600 feet (15 to 200 meters) A tsunami can have a period in the range of 10 minutes to 1 hour and a wavelength in excess of 700 km (430 miles).

WSAW | Tsunami Hits Close to Home

tsunami waves

tsunami: "Tsunami's wave may be as wide as the Pacific ocean.
The speed of tsunami may reach up to 700 Km/h [434 miles/h]
Tsunami is not dangerous in deep water.
Single waves are less than few meters high.
In shallow water, near the coasts,
the l of tsunamis wave
may be of 1.5 - 3 km [1 - 2 miles],
with an height of up to 30 m [100 feet] or more."

TSUNAMI COMPUTER MOVIES

Devastating quake redraws map

Roger Musson of the British Geological Survey in Edinburgh. 'This is the largest earthquake I've seen in my career as a seismologist,' he told news@nature.com. 'The length of the rupture was 1,200 kilometres - I could hardly believe it.'

The earthquake, measured at magnitude 9.0, actually consisted of three events within seconds of each other, Musson says. The initial slip, which occurred to the west of Sumatra's northern tip, triggered two further slips to the north. The total force released was enough to jolt the entire planet, and has been estimated as equivalent to almost 200 million tonnes of TNT.

The seafloor bulge unleashed a wave that surged throughout the Indian Ocean, hitting Indonesia and Thailand within an hour, Sri Lanka and India within four hours, and ultimately causing deaths as far away as East Africa. The swell would have been imperceptible in the open ocean, but as it entered shallower coastal waters it reared up to several metres in height, destroying seafront villages and resorts, and washing through farms up to 5 kilometres inland.

news@nature.com�-�Devastating quake redraws map

news@nature.com�-�Devastating quake redraws map

This bulge could have altered the elevations, as well as the positions, of the nearby islands, McGuire says. The Andaman and Nicobar islands may have been raised by the quake; meanwhile, slightly further from the fault line itself, water levels indicate that the Indonesian city of Banda Aceh has been left lower than before.

news@nature.com�-�Devastating quake redraws map

news@nature.com

news@nature.com

news@nature.com - Sumatran quake sped up Earth's rotation


News
Published online: 30 December 2004; | doi:10.1038/news041229-6
Sumatran quake sped up Earth's rotation
Michael Hopkin
Natural disaster shaved millionths of a second off planet's day.


The Earth has been rocked on its axis.
© NASA
The devastating earthquake that struck the Indian Ocean on 26 December was so powerful that it has accelerated the Earth's rotation, geophysicists have declared. They estimate that the shockwave shortened the period of our planet's rotation by some three microseconds.

The change was caused by a shift of mass towards the planet's centre, as the Indian Ocean's heavy tectonic plate lurched underneath Indonesia's one, say researchers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. This caused the globe to rotate faster, in the same way that a spinning figure-skater accelerates by tucking in her arms.

The blast literally rocked the world on its axis, add Richard Gross and his NASA colleagues. They estimate that Earth now tilts by an extra 2.5 centimetres in the wake of the jolt.

news@nature.com�-�Sumatran quake sped up Earth's rotation

Bloomberg.com: Australia & New Zealand: Destructive Tsunamis "possible"

Biggest Earthquake of Year Shakes Ocean Floor Off New Zealand

Dec. 24 (Bloomberg) -- An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 8.1, the year's strongest, shook the ocean floor today about 1,000 miles southwest of New Zealand, with the potential to release tsunamis that were unlikely to reach Pacific coastlines.

The quake struck about 1:59 a.m. at the epicenter and was the first this year to exceed a magnitude of 8. An 8.1 quake in Mexico City in 1985 killed about 9,500 people and left extensive damage.

``This was a strike-slip earthquake, where two plates move sideways to each other, as opposed to colliding head on,'' research geophysicist Stuart Sipkin said of the Pacific quake by telephone from Golden, Colorado, at the U.S. Geological Survey. A sideways quake limits the extent of tsunamis, Sipkin said.

The U.S. government's Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said on its Web site that ``widely destructive'' tsunamis from the quake were possible in the open ocean.

The nearest human outpost is MacQuarie Island, a small, rocky isle 305 miles to the south that Australian researchers share with seals. Today's quake was located at 50.24 degrees south latitude, 160.13 degrees east longitude.

The quake occurred about six miles below the seafloor, according to the U.S. quake center's analysis. The next largest quake in 2004 was a magnitude 7.5 temblor that struck eastern Indonesia on Nov. 11, killing 23 people and leaving almost 8,000 homeless, according to the national government.


Bloomberg.com: Australia & New Zealand

Daily Kos :: Ayn Rand: Question Tsunami Altruism

Ayn Rand: Question Tsunami Altruism
by uglyamerican
[Subscribe]

Fri Dec 31st, 2004 at 10:17:08 CDT

Man, there are real pieces of work out there. And thank god the internet lets us know them by name.

Let's just start at the beginning:


U.S. Should Not Help Tsunami Victims
Thursday December 30, 2004
By: David Holcberg

Our money is not the government's to give.
Feel free to read along ... here's the full article.

Oh David. What a holiday spirit. You know, over the years I've had a lot of interesting people quote me stuff from Ayn Rand as if it were some kind of new wave religion. And now I know, it's a religion for people who think money is power and money makes them right. Let's poke at some of David's fascinating thoughts.

Diaries :: uglyamerican's diary ::

David starts:


Such help may be entirely proper, especially considering that most of those affected by this tragedy are suffering through no fault of their own.

Notice he says "most" ... which where TPM picked up on this. So those damn Sri Lankans who angered the Ocean God are, actually getting what they deserved. Actually, David seems to mean something far more sinister here. See, it's their fault because they're poor. But before we filet him for that, let's examine the crux of his so-called argument:


The United States government, however, should not give any money to help the tsunami victims. Why? Because the money is not the government's to give.

(some gratiutous examples of foreign aid snipped)

The question no one asks about our politicians' "generosity" towards the world's needy is: By what right? By what right do they take our hard-earned money and give it away?

So let me get this straight. This guy actually has a job as a research assistant, and yet he was unable to go find a dictionary and look up the word government.

David, you silly boy, it's their right because we gave them that right when we elected them. That's how a representative democracy works. No taxation without representation? Maybe you were sick in class that day.

What is baffling, of course, is why a world altering event (literally - remember this earthquake changed the earth's rotation) causing so much death and devastation that it makes Atlantis look like a tea party is suddenly a cause of concern for David, particularly since the US is offering relatively meager sum. What, no complaint that four times the amount of that foreign aid is being spent daily in Iraq? David is apparently OK with our government having a blank check to remove regimes, bomb cities and kill thousands of people ourselves. But when natural forces do it, it's a moral outrage for our government to get out the checkbook? Why one might ask?


This is why Americans--the wealthiest people on earth--are expected to sacrifice (voluntarily or by force) the wealth they have earned to provide for the needs of those who did not earn it. It is Americans' acceptance of altruism that renders them morally impotent to protest against the confiscation and distribution of their wealth. It is past time to question--and to reject--such a vicious morality that demands that we sacrifice our values instead of holding on to them.

Oh. You see, the problem David has is that rich people are being forced to spend money on poor people. Because we know all rich people worked long and hard for their money and therefore are actually superior creatures to those lazy Sri Lankans who have nothing to do but to wait for the earth to figure out ways to kill them.

Brilliant. I don't think anyone could have said anything more bastardly before the New Year. Way to get in before a deadline, David.

Two things I know for sure after reading this OpEd piece. I'm glad I never read Atlas Shrugged and tsunamis have very bad aim.



Daily Kos :: Ayn Rand: Question Tsunami Altruism

WorldNetDaily: Rumsfeld says 9-11 plane 'shot down' in Pennsylvania

Rumsfeld says 9-11 plane 'shot down' in Pennsylvania

During surprise Christmas Eve trip, defense secretary contradicts official story

Posted: December 27, 2004
1:00 a.m. Eastern


© 2004 WorldNetDaily.com

WASHINGTON – Ever since Sept. 11, 2001, there have been questions about Flight 93, the ill-fated plane that crashed in the rural fields of Pennsylvania.

The official story has been that passengers on the United Airlines flight rushed the hijackers in an effort to prevent them from crashing the plane into a strategic target – possibly the U.S. Capitol.

During his surprise Christmas Eve trip to Iraq, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld referred to the flight being shot down – long a suspicion because of the danger the flight posed to Washington landmarks and population centers.

Was it a slip of the tongue? Was it an error? Or was it the truth, finally being dropped on the public more than three years after the tragedy of the terrorist attacks that killed nearly 3,000?


Donald Rumsfeld

Here's what Rumsfeld said Friday: "I think all of us have a sense if we imagine the kind of world we would face if the people who bombed the mess hall in Mosul, or the people who did the bombing in Spain, or the people who attacked the United States in New York, shot down the plane over Pennsylvania and attacked the Pentagon, the people who cut off peoples' heads on television to intimidate, to frighten – indeed the word 'terrorized' is just that. Its purpose is to terrorize, to alter behavior, to make people be something other than that which they want to be."

Several eyewitnesses to the crash claim they saw a "military-type" plane flying around United Airlines Flight 93 when the hijacked passenger jet crashed – prompting the once-unthinkable question of whether the U.S. military shot down the plane.

Although the onboard struggle between hijackers and passengers – immortalized by the courageous "Let's roll" call to action by Todd Beamer – became one of the enduring memories of that disastrous day, the actual cause of Flight 93's crash, of the four hijacked airliners, remains the most unclear.

Several residents in and around Shanksville, Pa., describing the crash as they saw it, claim to have seen a second plane – an unmarked military-style jet.

Well-founded uncertainty as to just what happened to Flight 93 is nothing new. Just three days after the worst terrorist attack in American history, on Sept. 14, 2001, The (Bergen County, N.J.) Record newspaper reported that five eyewitnesses reported seeing a second plane at the Flight 93 crash site.

That same day, reported the Record, FBI Special Agent William Crowley said investigators could not rule out that a second plane was nearby during the crash. He later said he had misspoken, dismissing rumors that a U.S. military jet had intercepted the plane before it could strike a target in Washington, D.C.

Although government officials insist there was never any pursuit of Flight 93, they were informed the flight was suspected of having been hijacked at 9:16 am, fully 50 minutes before the plane came down.

On the Sept. 16, 2001, edition of NBC's "Meet the Press," Vice President Dick Cheney, while not addressing Flight 93 specifically, spoke clearly to the administration's clear policy regarding shooting down hijacked jets.

Vice President Cheney: "Well, the – I suppose the toughest decision was this question of whether or not we would intercept incoming commercial aircraft."

WorldNetDaily: Rumsfeld says 9-11 plane 'shot down' in Pennsylvania

Daily Kos :: Iraqi Candidate Names Not Released for 'Security Reasons'

Pretty unbelievable - the names of the people who you might actually vote for can not be released for security reasons.

Daily Kos :: Iraqi Candidate Names Not Released for 'Security Reasons': "

Daily Kos :: Operation Denounce Ann Coulter

Daily Kos :: Operation Denounce Ann Coulter: "This is on Ann Coulter's home page

To The People Of Islam:
Just think: If we'd invaded your countries, killed your leaders and converted you to Christianity YOU'D ALL BE OPENING CHRISTMAS PRESENTS RIGHT ABOUT NOW!
Merry Christmas"

Daily Kos :: Why the right wing corporate media is good for you (and for America)

Daily Kos :: Why the right wing corporate media is good for you (and for America): "Them liberals are always harping on this science stuff, as if dissecting a frog is going to help prepare the world for the Second Coming! They don't read the Bible, they don't know nothing! It's good this story was killed. No sense confusing the public with a bunch of facts!"

Project Censored 2005 - Story #4

(#4) High Uranium Levels Found in Troops and Civilians
UPDATE BY TEDD WEYMAN: UMRC found artificial uranium in bomb craters, surrounding watercourses and the bodies of civilians exposed to US Coalition bombing in Afghanistan. Civilians surveyed presented with the classical symptoms of internal contamination by uranium, which began after exposure to the bombing. The presence of artificial uranium in environmental and biological samples indicates that the bunker buster warheads used in Afghanistan are made of uranium.

Uranium is a chemically and radiologically toxic element, clinically proven to be a cause of various types of cancer and congenital malformations (birth defects). Internal contamination of uranium is responsible for variety of systemic and organ system problems, which has never been considered or studied by the Defense Department or Veterans health programs as possible cause of Gulf War Illness. The symptoms of internal contamination by uranium in Iraq and Afghanistan civilians are identical to the symptoms of US and Coalition veterans complaining of Gulf War Illness.

The Pentagon/DoD have interfered with UMRC's ability to have its studies published by managing, a progressive and persistent misinformation program in the press against UMRC, and through the use of its control of science research grants to refute UMRC's scientific findings and destroy the reputation of UMRC's scientific staff, physicians and laboratories. UMRC is the first independent research organization to find Depleted Uranium in the bodies of US, UK and Canadian Gulf War I veterans and has subsequently, following Operation Iraqi Freedom, found Depleted Uranium in the water, soils and atmosphere of Iraq as well as biological samples donated by Iraqi civilians.

The United States and several of its Coalition partners and NATO allies have been deploying in battlefield and experimenting with chemically toxic and radioactive heavy metals in various types of bullets, bombs and warheads since the early 1970s. Uranium powder is taken from the nuclear fuel reprocessing cycle, after it has been mixed with nuclear reactor waste products and spent fuel, to supply the non-fissile weapons' manufacturing industry.

Uranium is preferred over all other "ballistic" metals (e.g. lead, iron, tungsten) because it offers a set of unique metallurgical properties: it is extremely dense yet ductile metal (not brittle); it is pyrophoric (uranium dust burns spontaneously at room temperature); and, solid metal uranium is autoigniting at 170° F. Uranium metal has a very unusual property not available in any other metal; it is "self-sharpening", meaning that when it hits a target at high velocities (1 km/sec) it erodes and breaks in such a way as to continuously re-sharpen its point — the leading points of all other warhead metals flatten or mushroom under these conditions. These properties give uranium a superior performance as a penetrating warhead alloy capable of breaching the hardest and thickest armor plating, retaining penetration capabilities at 15 % greater distances and lower speeds than the most common alternative metal, tungsten. Burning uranium is hard to extinguish, and if doused with water, it will explode. Uranium used in specially designed high velocity liquid metal penetrators can bore through 20 feet of super-reinforced concrete bunkers in classified weapons called "shaped charges" and "explosively formed penetrators". The hard (dense), resilient (ductile) and heavy (sustaining momentum) characteristics of uranium also make its optimal in the warhead of robust earth-penetrating bombs to carry them into buried targets and caves.

The mainstream press in the US and Canada does not show any general interest in the story, let alone an investigative interest. European mainstream press is more interested and follows key developments. The NY Daily News April 5, 2004 has covered Gulf War II results by UMRC's studies of US veterans. DoD has lied and misled the public and the veterans in an attempt to undermine the significance of the story. There is significant alternative press and internet press coverage. The technique for coverage is to approach the story as a debate between government and independent experts in which public interest is stimulated by polarizing the issues rather than telling the scientific and medical truth. The issues are systematically confused and misinformed by government, UN regulatory agencies (WHO, UNEP, IAEA, CDC, DOE, etc) and defense sector (military and the weapons developers and manufacturers).

UPDATE BY STEPHANIE HILLER: This is a shocking story since it suggests that experimental nuclear bombs were dropped around Kabul at the end of the war Operation Enduring Freedom. (Did they mean enduring radiation?) And what have they dropped on Iraq?

Continued research shows that we have all been irradiated here in the United States, at an enormous cost to the public health. Cancer rates alone show that genetic mutation has been rapidly increasing since the first bomb was tested in Almorgordo, NM in 1945. But the effects of low-level radiation have been systematically hidden from public view!

In April after sick vets from the current war got no help from the Pentagon, the mother of one of the soldiers went to the papers. Juan Gonzalez of the New York Daily News launched an investigation. The News paid for nine men to be tested by Asaf Durakovic. He found that four of them were contaminated with uranium. The News got the attention of New York Senator Hilary Clinton. She held a teleconference— but Durakovic was not allowed to participate!

Amy Goodman interviewed Durakovic later the same month on Democracy Now!— don't know if it was thanks to my story. AlterNet rejected the story because their source on depleted uranium, John Fahey, did not agree with it.
I don't know of any mainstream media that has picked up the story, and I don't find any references to the Gonzalez piece either. The BBC and the Seattle Post Intelligencer covered it before me.

To learn more about uranium weapons search the web! It's a huge topic. Start with the world Uranium Weapons Conference held last October in Hamburg: The Power Point by Dr. Ali shows the most excruciating consequences of Persian Gulf One -- deformed babies. Also, Join WBW! Women for a Better World has begun an information campaign to educate the public about depleted uranium, especially young people who might be called to join the military and their families, regarding the contamination of Central Eurasia. Come to our web site for more information, flyers, and to sign a petition opposing the draft for the same reason.





URANIUM MEDICAL RESEARCH CENTER, January 2003
Title: “UMRC’s Preliminary Findings from Afghanistan & Operation Enduring Freedom”
and
“Afghan Field Trip #2 Report: Precision Destruction- Indiscriminate Effects”
Author: Tedd Weyman, UMRC Research Team

AWAKENED WOMAN, January 2004
Title: “Scientists Uncover Radioactive Trail in Afghanistan”
Author: Stephanie Hiller

DISSIDENT VOICE, March 2004
Title: “There Are No Words…Radiation in Iraq Equals 250,000 Nagasaki Bombs”
Author: Bob Nichols

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS, April 5,2004
Title: “Poisoned?”
Author: Juan Gonzalez

INFORMATION CLEARING HOUSE, March 2004
Title: “International Criminal Tribune For Afghanistan At Tokyo, The People vs. George Bush”
Author: Professor Ms Niloufer Bhagwat J.

Evaluator: Jennifer Lillig, Ph.D.
Student Researcher: Kenny Crosbie

Civilian populations in Afghanistan and Iraq and occupying troops have been contaminated with astounding levels of radioactive depleted and non-depleted uranium as a result of post-9/11 United States’ use of tons of uranium munitions. Researchers say surrounding countries are bound to feel the effects as well.

In 2003 scientists from the Uranium Medical Research Center (UMRC) studied urine samples of Afghan civilians and found that 100% of the samples taken had levels of non-depleted uranium (NDU) 400% to 2000% higher than normal levels. The UMRC research team studied six sites, two in Kabul and others in the Jalalabad area. The civilians were tested four months after the attacks in Afghanistan by the United States and its allies.

NDU is more radioactive than depleted uranium (DU), which itself is charged with causing many cancers and severe birth defects in the Iraqi population–especially children–over the past ten years. Four million pounds of radioactive uranium was dropped on Iraq in 2003 alone. Uranium dust will be in the bodies of our returning armed forces. Nine soldiers from the 442nd Military Police serving in Iraq were tested for DU contamination in December 2003. Conducted at the request of The News, as the U.S. government considers the cost of $1,000 per affected soldier prohibitive, the test found that four of the nine men were contaminated with high levels of DU, likely caused by inhaling dust from depleted uranium shells fired by U.S. troops. Several of the men had traces of another uranium isotope, U-236, that are produced only in a nuclear reaction process.

Most American weapons (missiles, smart bombs, dumb bombs, bullets, tank shells, cruise missiles, etc.) contain high amounts of radioactive uranium. Depleted or non-depleted, these types of weapons, on detonation, release a radioactive dust which, when inhaled, goes into the body and stays there. It has a half-life of 4.5 billion years. Basically, it’s a permanently available contaminant, distributed in the environment, where dust storms or any water nearby can disperse it. Once ingested, it releases subatomic particles that slice through DNA.

UMRC’s Field Team found several hundred Afghan civilians with acute symptoms of radiation poisoning along with chronic symptoms of internal uranium contamination, including congenital problems in newborns. Local civilians reported large, dense dust clouds and smoke plumes rising from the point of impact, an acrid smell, followed by burning of the nasal passages, throat and upper respiratory tract. Subjects in all locations presented identical symptom profiles and chronologies. The victims reported symptoms including pain in the cervical column, upper shoulders and basal area of the skull, lower back/kidney pain, joint and muscle weakness, sleeping difficulties, headaches, memory problems and disorientation.

At the Uranium Weapons Conference held October 2003 in Hamburg, Germany, independent scientists from around the world testified to a huge increase in birth deformities and cancers wherever NDU and DU had been used. Professor Katsuma Yagasaki, a scientist at the Ryukyus University, Okinawa calculated that the 800 tons of DU used in Afghanistan is the radioactive equivalent of 83,000 Nagasaki bombs. The amount of DU used in Iraq is equivalent to 250,000 Nagasaki bombs.

At the Uranium Weapons Conference, a demonstration by British-trained oncologist Dr. Jawad Al-Ali showed photographs of the kinds of birth deformities and tumors he had observed at the Saddam Teaching Hospital in Basra just before the 2003 war. Cancer rates had increased dramatically over the previous fifteen years. In 1989 there were 11 abnormalities per 100,000 births; in 2001 there were 116 per 100,000—an increase of over a thousand percent. In 1989 34 people died of cancer; in 2001 there were 603 cancer deaths. The 2003 war has increased these figures exponentially.

At a meeting of the International Criminal Tribunal for Afghanistan held December 2003 in Tokyo, the U.S. was indicted for multiple war crimes in Afghanistan, among them the use of DU. Leuren Moret, President of Scientists for Indigenous People and Environmental Commissioner for the City of Berkeley, testified that because radioactive contaminants from uranium weapons travel through air, water, and food sources, the effects of U.S. deployment in Afghanistan will be felt in Iran, Pakistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Russia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, China and India. Countries affected by the use of uranium weapons in Iraq include Saudi Arabia, Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, Israel, Turkey, and Iran.

UPDATE BY BOB NICHOLS: (Oklahoma City) Throughout the world people are familiar with the "smoking gun" solution so prized by murder mystery writers. Many think that once the smoking gun in any mystery is discovered, it is time for the "bad guys" to give up. Wish it were only so.

The smoking guns are Sgt. Hector Vega, Sgt. Ray Ramos, Sgt. Agustin Matos and Cpl. Anthony Yonnone from New York's 442nd Guard Unit—they are the first confirmed cases of inhaled uranium oxide exposure from the current Iraq conflict. Dr. Asaf Durokovic, professor of Nuclear Medicine at the Uranium Medical Research Centre http://www.umrc.net/ conducted the diagnostic tests. The story was released April 3, 2004 in the New York Daily News. There is no treatment and there is no cure. http://www.nydailynews.com/front/story/180333p-156685c.html

Leuren Moret reports, "In my research on depleted uranium during the past 5 years, the most disturbing information concerns the impact on the unborn children and future generations for both soldiers serving in the depleted uranium wars, and for the civilians who must live in the permanently radioactive contaminated regions. Today, more than 240,000 Gulf War veterans are on permanent medical disability and more than 11,000 are dead. They have been denied testing, medical care, and compensation for depleted uranium exposure and related illnesses since 1991."

Moret continues "Even worse, they brought it home in their bodies. In some families, the children born before the Gulf War are the only healthy members. Wives and female partners of Gulf War veterans have reported a condition known as burning semen syndrome, and are now internally contaminated from depleted uranium carried in the semen of exposed veterans. Many are reporting reproductive illnesses such as endometriosis. In a U.S. government study, conducted by the Department of Veterans Affairs on post-Gulf War babies, 67% were found to have serious birth defects or serious illnesses. They were born without eyes (anophthalmos), ears, had missing organs, missing legs and arms, fused fingers, thyroid or other organ malformations."

"LIFE Photoessay:"
http://www.life.com/Life/essay/gulfwar/gulf01.html

Moret concludes, "In Iraq it is even worse where babies are born without brains, organs are outside the body, or women give birth to pieces of flesh. In babies born in Iraq in 2002, the incidence of anophthalmos was 250,000 times greater (20 cases in 4,000 births) than the natural occurrence, one in 50 million births. Takashi MORIZUMI's photos: in http://www.savewarchildren.org/ record the tragedy in Iraq."

For more information on the American President's continuing campaign of contaminating the land, check the World Uranium Weapons Conference, http://www.uraniumweaponsconference.de/ ,
Check the Uranium Medical Research Center and Dr. Asaf Durakovic at http://www.umrc.net/ ,
and for updates on the related Nuclear Power Plants see Russell Hoffman's website at: http://www.animatedsoftware.com/hotwords/index.htm .

Write Leuren Moret, Independent Scientist and radiation specialist, City of Berkeley Environmental Commissioner, Past President, Association for Women Geoscientists: leurenmoret@yahoo.com

"Depleted Uranium: The Trojan Horse of Nuclear War" by Leuren Moret, World Affairs Journal, July, 2004. http://www.mindfully.org/Nucs/2004/DU-Trojan-Horse1jul04.htm
Project Censored 2005 - Story #4

12/29/2004

Daily Kos :: Near 60,000 Dead from Tsunami Disaster

Your donation makes a difference!
The reported deaths from the disaster climbed today to more than 50,000, with some reports placing the number near 60,000, as Sri Lanka and Indonesia increased their confirmed tolls

Daily Kos :: Near 60,000 Dead from Tsunami Disaster

They don't even know who we are

bloggers and citizens
by kid oakland
Tue Dec 28th, 2004 at 20:20:00 CDT

Reading ttagaris and blogswarms's diaries regarding the controversy over the Pelosi/Reid nod to Tim Roemer for DNC chair just made me angry at first...kind of like I suppose you all feel.

Which is also how Chris Bowers and Jerome Armstrong (who are doing an excellent job covering the ins and outs of this story at MyDD) feel....

But let me say something here, all Democratic party politics aside, all debate of the horserace pushed off the table, this just brings something home in a crystal clear manner:

They don't even know who we are.

Democrats ::

I remember thinking after Al Gore conceded the 2000 Presidential race..."hey, maybe Al will actually have time to come meet with some of us little people who fought for him as he gathers strength and reformulates for 2004." Needless to say....that vision of sitting at an environmentalist conference and looking at the folding chair next to mine and seeing the former Vice President on a "listening" campaign never materialized.

In part, that's due to Al Gore being a busy man...ahem...and in part...that was due to Al Gore not realizing that...like Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, Tim Roemer, and, yes, John Kerry and John Edwards...he was bound to be an "old school" DC Democrat with no idea what the grassroots and the netroots are actually up to...so long as he stayed within his comfortable corridors of power.

They don't even know who we are, much less what we think and who we are fighting for.

And worse, they are so caught up in their inside the beltway, high-stakes power games that even if we screamed our lungs out over here in our little corner of the universe....we'd still appear as this tiny fraction of the equation. Be a dear and weight the pro-Dean, blog-driven dissent by any extra factor or two, would you, Harry....

We are bloggers and citizens, and our politics should no longer be about them....our politics should reflect who we are and who we fight for. In fact, the question I have tonight is not who will be chair of the DNC, but, with all due respect, if all we're doing is shoring up a "business-as-usual party" why should I care?

Daily Kos :: bloggers and citizens: "They don't even know who we are"

Daily Kos :: The Dark at the End of the Tunnel: Unsustainable Casualty Rate in Iraq



..factors indicate that the United States, should it desire a postive outcome in Iraq, will have to make large sacrifices to create a much larger war effort, will have to force internal political changes in the Iraqi government leadership, will have to take Iraqi security personnel out of Iraq to be trained in safe areas to be redeployed in Iraq.

Current US replacement rates, and military strategy do not allow for these changes, and therefore it can be concluded that should the present rate of losses of coalition personnel and Iraqi security forces continue, without a dramatic increase in casualties inflicted on the enemy, that the US occuaption in Iraq will have a negative outcome - producing either a failed state, or a state with a hostile government.

Daily Kos :: The Dark at the End of the Tunnel: Unsustainable Casualty Rate in Iraq

12/25/2004

Happy Holidays!

Lot's of family in the house of law so don't expect any posts for a while.


Merry Christmas, Happy Kwanza, Happy Hannukah, Happy Winter Solstice, etc...


Don't forget to leave some Naan bread and Badami milk for Sandip err... Santa!



Bonus: Fractal X-mas tree pics< here:
Daily Kos :: Happy Holidays!

12/24/2004

Dear Reverend/ President/ Leader Bush:

Dear President Bush:

Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God's Law. I Have learned a great deal from you and understand why you would propose and support a constitutional amendment banning same sex marriage. As you Said "in the eyes of God marriage is based between a man a woman." I try to share that knowledge with as many people as I can. When someone tries
to defend the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind them that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination... End of debate.

I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some other elements of God's Laws and how to follow them.

*****
1. Leviticus 25:44 states that I may possess slaves, both male and
female, provided they are purchased from neighboring nations. A friend
of mine claims that this applies to Mexicans, but not Canadians. Can you
clarify?
Why can't I own Canadians?

2. I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as sanctioned in
Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair
price for her?

3. I know that I am allowed no contact with a woman while she is in her
period of menstrual uncleanness - Lev.15: 19-24. The problem is how do I
tell? I have tried asking, but most women take offense.

4. When I burn a bull on the altar as a sacrifice, I know it creates a
pleasing odor for the Lord - Lev.1:9. The problem is, my neighbors.
They claim the odor is not pleasing to them. Should I smite them?

5. I have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2.
clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill
him myself, or should I ask the police to do it?

6. A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an
abomination - Lev. 11:10, it is a lesser abomination than homosexuality.
I don't agree. Can you settle this? Are there 'degrees' of abomination?

7. Lev.21:20 states that I may not approach the altar of God if I have a
defect in my sight. I have to admit that I wear reading glasses. Does my
vision have to be 20/20, or is there some wiggle-room here?

8. Most of my male friends get their hair trimmed, including the hair
around their temples, even though this is expressly forbidden by Lev.
19:27. How should they die?

9. I know from Lev. 11:6-8 that touching the skin of a dead pig makes me
unclean, but may I still play football if I wear gloves?

10. My uncle has a farm. He violates Lev.19:19 by planting two different
crops in the same field, as does his wife by wearing garments made of
two different kinds of thread (cotton/polyester blend). He also tends to
curse and blaspheme a lot. Is it really necessary that we go to all the
trouble of getting the whole town together to stone them? Lev.24:10-16.
Couldn't we just burn them to death at a private family affair, like we
do with people who sleep with their in-laws? (Lev. 20:14)

I know you have studied these things extensively and thus enjoy
considerable expertise in such matters, so I am confident you can help.

Thank you again for reminding us that God's word is eternal and
unchanging.

Jerry

Daily Kos :: Comments Open Thread #151

Guardsmen: tell the" Republican relatives to fvck off and die for me

by crazymom on Daily Kos :: Comments "We are going to pay for this in blood" - Guardsmen
My son is an Ohio Nat'l Guardsmen...

stationed in Iraq. He has been gone since Dec. and will not be home until March. They did their "basic" training in Indiana in the snow and cold. He claims they were trained fairly well and I know they received proper body armor( my husband and I raised hell about it) , but their equipment is old and totally worn out . They are running up and down the roads with trucks that look like they're from the Vietnam era.During my son's basic training in Georgia years ago they told him didn't need the combat training because he was just in the Guard.(Has this attitude changed?) The over use and abuse of the Guard has been my major beef. Some may be willing to go ,they support the war and this idiotic president-I say let'em go. But others should not be forced to serve more than one deployment. They end up getting deployed for longer periods and receive fewer benefits than regular army. The majority do not want to go and if they go once they don't want to go again. It's devastating to their lives personally and financially.My son e-mailed me yesterday and told me to have a happy T. Day. He said to tell the" Republican relatives to fuck off and die for me (haha?)".His words not mine. Believe me there are alot of guys over there that hate Bush as much as we do and they need to speak out. That's the problem that I have with ones that say they are reenlisting. They shouldn't. I can't feel bad for them because they know what they're heading into and they are supporting this travesty by agreeing to go. My son will NOT reenlist!!

"The Night Before Christmas"

It was the night before Chrismas. We were on "Ambush Patrol". Not a movement was stirring. We did not hear a soul!

When all of a sudden , blasts pierced our ears. And we knew in an instant that the VC were here.

Tracers did fly through the night air. We set off our claymores. Charlie advanced, and showed no fear!

When All of a sudden, Rotor Blades were heard. And in flew from no where, a Gunship, a War-Bird.

It shot off its rockets, its mini-Gun did hum. The 40 MM grenade launcer made the VC run.

When Christmas finally came. The sun broke through the sky.

Our Christmas presents were "Medivacing" the wounded. And counting how many had died!

"The Night Before Christmas"

12/23/2004

BELLACIAO

BELLACIAO - Time names President Bush Person of the Year - Bellaciao collective
Great Blog!

BELLACIAO - Time names Adolph Hitler, Man of the Year 1938 - Bellaciao collective

What a fun blog to visit! -- law



Fuhrer of the German people, Commander-in-Chief of the German Army, Navy & Air Force, Chancellor of the Third Reich, Herr Hitler reaped on that day at Munich the harvest of an audacious, defiant, ruthless foreign policy he had pursued for five and a half years. He had torn the Treaty of Versailles to shreds. He had rearmed Germany to the teeth--or as close to the tooth as he was able. He had stolen Austria before the eyes of a horrified and apparently impotent world.


BELLACIAO - Time names Adolph Hitler, Man of the Year 1938 - Bellaciao collective

Wheel of VOTER Challenge III: $.5K - Bellaciao collective

"Due to the popularity of the last two Wheel of VOTER Challenges 2004 -- in which it was paper-trail voting emerged to have an unrivaled mandate and undetectable machine hackability became shockingly indisputable -- we at WVC headquarters now offer the following $500 opportunity for an equally tantalizing issue:


We will send a $500 cashier’s check to the first Diebold or Tri Ad elections systems information technology employee who provides proof they:

a) Voted for Gore and Kerry in the last two general elections.
b) Are registered Democrats.
c) Worked at Diebold or Tri Ad for at least three years.
d) Will answer eight queries below to the best of your ability.


BELLACIAO - Wheel of VOTER Challenge III: $.5K - Bellaciao collective:

STEAL Our Vote? STEAL OUR Future!

Republican reFRAMES Importance of ALL Citizens Defending The Vote=Democracy
2 comment(s).


Brilliant essay from understanding Computer expert whose honest assesment and ’framing’ of the Arguments for the ’Franchise’, the Sanctity of the Vote, protection of the ’Ultimate Commons’, the Equal Right to Vote, a concern for the integrity of a ’survey’ that respects the will of the American Voter. Voting trust is the most basic, parlimentary way to petition OUR government for a ’redress of grievances’ This writer states: "Since the only thing that holds our Representatives accountable to us is the power of our votes, if that disappears, so does their accountability.The incredible power of our American nation is contained solely within the American people’s votes, and by not returning that power to us they are able to quite literally Rule the World." Though he says Democrats, vote protectors and fraud pursuers are missing the oppurtunity to build broad non-partisan support, because, "You are missing the point when you describe the problem as “Bush stole the election from Kerry”, and Republicans are simply not going to get on board with that.” He cares about the pure essence of Representative Democracy,a security expert who is concerned about the voting infrastructure controlled by machines that "have been designed SPECIFICALLY to allow fraud then prevent it!" Republicans have been timid & blind so far because, "The reason that we Republicans haven’t seen it stems from the fact that it is not as obvious to us Republicans as it is the Democrats, since the pendulum of power moved in the way we wanted it to. We’re less likely to see the problem, since we tried to push the pendulum to the right, and the pendulum dutifully moved to the right. What we’re missing is the fact that maybe WE didn’t move it any more than a surfer moves the wave he rides in on by pointing his board towards the beach." I agree, THE NATION, THE FRANCHISE WOULD BE BETTER SERVED AND SAVED BY FRAMING THE DILEMNA AS SO: " The problem is not that John Kerry lost the election. That is just a SYMPTOM of the real problem, which is that the electorate may not be under the control of the American people. We need to re-frame this debate under different terms that EVERY American can understand and support.There appears that there was definitely a grab for power, but it was not the Republicans stealing power from the Democrats. If it happened, then a small group of Republicans stole the power from the American People as a whole." ALERT: "The great unknown right now is whether we still have enough power left to get it back,Ask yourself if we can ever come together and really make the world a better place if we keep following the path that we’re on." VOTING is the barometer of The Peoples, goals, aspirations, Dreams, the path We SEEK!

STEAL Our Vote? STEAL OUR Future!

BELLACIAO - Republican reFRAMES Importance of ALL Citizens Defending The Vote=Democracy - Bellaciao collective

Timbuk3: Timbuk3: The battle for America has begun

Timbuk3: The battle for America has begun

Hello friends, family, comrades, rebels, insurgents, refugees, exiles, ex-patriots, people in hiding, and all the ships at sea...

I debated whether or not I should say this. I wondered if it would do any good. I have profound fears for the future, and deep anger and sadness for my country.

Our country. Our country that's been stolen away from us. Captured by those who traffic in fear, and hatred, and bigotry, and poison.

I feel like we're lost in a forest right now. We're down the rabbit hole and there is no end in sight.

I know you all feel the same sentiments. The rage against the unanswerable abyss, the terror of what lies ahead, the confusion of what this nation has become.

I will not attempt to glide over the monumental disaster that was this election. There is no silver lining. There is no redemption. The illusion of hope in this last year has been mercilessly stripped away.

The monster we face is now unleashed, and free to wreak havoc and spill the blood of innocents.

We are in a dark place. Perhaps the darkest place. Unable to even conceive of the idea of light.

But we have been in such midnight moments before.

We have been in the pits of Viet Nam and the hanging trees of Jim Crowe. We have despaired on the cotton fields of Mississippi and the breadlines of the depression. We've been beaten down by crooked cops, pushed around by factory bosses, terrorized by the Klan and the Fascists and the Nazis. And neonazis, and the fat cats, and robber barons, and the fraud politicians and wicked masters.

But we have never surrendered. We have never weakened or wavered.

Did we surrender at Kent State? Jackson State?

No.

Did we surrender at Selma, Alabama?

No...

It ain't over yet, folks. Not by a long shot.

So cry a few tears. Bang against the walls. Scream into the wind.

Then collect yourself and get back to work.

It's time to punch the clock.

The battle for America has begun.



Taking Action

Yahoo! News - Christians protest actions that play down Christmas' religious nature

Christmas keeps getting downgraded, to the point that you're almost made to feel weird if you even mention it," says West, a resident of Edmonds, Wash., who describes herself as a non-denominational Christian. "What's the matter with recognizing the reason behind the whole holiday?"

This Christmas season, West has plenty of company. Christians and traditionalists across the nation, fed up with what they view as the de-emphasizing of Christmas as a religious holiday, are filing lawsuits, promoting boycotts and launching campaigns aimed at restoring references to Christ in seasonal celebrations.

Yahoo! News - Christians protest actions that play down Christmas' religious nature

'Liberal bias' targeted by college group

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) -- Conservatives want to enlist legislators in their battle against what they say is liberal bias at state universities.

Students for Academic Freedom will ask lawmakers to pass legislation during the 2005 session to protect students from what it sees as harassment or discrimination based on political beliefs, said the group's founder, conservative intellectual David Horowitz.

The group plans to push its 'academic bill of rights' in about 20 states in the coming year, Horowitz told The Herald Times for a story today.

The document, which Horowitz wrote, espouses intellectual diversity and independent thought. Horowitz said it was needed to protect conservative students from discrimination by leftist professors and to ensure that differing views were respected.

'It's not like we're objecting there's a leftist on the faculty, or 10,' he said. 'We're objecting there's no other point of view.'

Democratic state Rep. Matt Pierce of Bloomington said he believes most university faculty welcome debate in their classrooms.

'I don't buy into this idea that there's some kind of liberal elite brainwashing students all across America,' Pierce said.

Critics contend that the proposal opens the door to political meddling in higher education rather than closing it

'Liberal bias' targeted by college group

Creepy Wisdom from The Wired Jester :: The Ossuary at Sedlec

Sedlec, near Prague

. The church-yard is quiet. The church itself has spires, and at the top are skull and crossbone motifs. Sedlec is not actually a church - it's an Ossuary: a tomb...For some reason, in the 17 and 1800s, they decided to decorate the Ossuary...

We live with religion from a very small age, and it's easy to feel a certain bored disdain for it. Perhaps respect for certain religious individuals, but it's easy to feel that overall, religion is a known quantity. Those who don't believe it don't see the mystery; or we think we don't need it anyway. Sedlec proves, I think, that religion - and the way we use it (and are used by it?) - is endlessly surprising. It's a very strange place, because you realise that for all its solid, concrete, righteous apperance, belief and faith are fervent, mutable ideas, impossible to constrain by rules. It is both chilling and amusing to imagine what fundamentalists - be they Dubya and Ashcroft, or Iraqi terrorists - would make of Sedlec



The Wired Jester :: The Ossuary at Sedlec: Gone but never forgotten

Slashdot | Skunkworks At Apple -- The Graphing Calculator Story

The Graphing Calculator Story

the story behind the Macintosh Graphing Calculator. An excerpt from this strange account: "It's midnight. I've been working sixteen hours a day, seven days a week. I'm not being paid. In fact, my project was canceled six months ago, so I'm evading security, sneaking into Apple Computer's main offices in the heart of Silicon Valley, doing clandestine volunteer work for an eight-billion-dollar corporation."


The Graphing Calculator Story

Slashdot | Skunkworks At Apple -- The Graphing Calculator Story

The Graphing Calculator Story

Cute and Fun -- law

The Graphing Calculator Story

Copyright © 2004 Ron Avitzur.

Pacific Tech's Graphing Calculator has a long history. I began the work in 1985 while in school. That became Milo, and later became part of FrameMaker. Over the last twenty years, many people have contributed to it. Graphing Calculator 1.0, which Apple bundled with the original PowerPC computers, originated under unique circumstances.

I used to be a contractor for Apple, working on a secret project. Unfortunately, the computer we were building never saw the light of day. The project was so plagued by politics and ego that when the engineers requested technical oversight, our manager hired a psychologist instead. In August 1993, the project was canceled. A year of my work evaporated, my contract ended, and I was unemployed.

I was frustrated by all the wasted effort, so I decided to uncancel my small part of the project. I had been paid to do a job, and I wanted to finish it. My electronic badge still opened Apple's doors, so I just kept showing up.



I had many sympathizers. Apple's engineers thought what I was doing was cool. Whenever I gave demos, my colleagues said, "I wish I'd had that when I was in school." Those working on Apple's project to change the microprocessor in its computers to the IBM PowerPC were especially supportive. They thought my software would show off the speed of their new machine. None of them was able to hire me, however, so I worked unofficially, in classic "skunkworks" fashion.

I knew nothing about the PowerPC and had no idea how to modify my software to run on it. One August night, after dinner, two guys showed up to announce that they would camp out in my office until the modification was done. The three of us spent the next six hours editing fifty thousand lines of code. The work was delicate surgery requiring arcane knowledge of the MacOS, the PowerPC, and my own software. It would have taken weeks for any one of us working alone.

At 1:00 a.m., we trekked to an office that had a PowerPC prototype. We looked at each other, took a deep breath, and launched the application. The monitor burst into flames. We calmly carried it outside to avoid setting off smoke detectors, plugged in another monitor, and tried again. The software hadn't caused the fire; the monitor had just chosen that moment to malfunction. The software ran over fifty times faster than it had run on the old microprocessor. We played with it for a while and agreed, "This doesn't suck" (high praise in Apple lingo). We had an impressive demo, but it would take months of hard work to turn it into a product.



I asked my friend Greg Robbins to help me. His contract in another division at Apple had just ended, so he told his manager that he would start reporting to me. She didn't ask who I was and let him keep his office and badge. In turn, I told people that I was reporting to him. Since that left no managers in the loop, we had no meetings and could be extremely productive. We worked twelve hours a day, seven days a week. Greg had unlimited energy and a perfectionist's attention to detail. He usually stayed behind closed doors programming all day, while I spent much of my time talking with other engineers. Since I had asked him to help as a personal favor, I had to keep pace with him. Thanks to an uncurtained east-facing window in my bedroom, I woke with the dawn and usually arrived ten minutes before Greg did. He would think I had been working for hours and feel obliged to work late to stay on par. I in turn felt obliged to stay as late as he did. This feedback loop created an ever-increasing spiral of productivity.

People around the Apple campus saw us all the time and assumed we belonged. Few asked who we were or what we were doing.When someone did ask me, I never lied, but relied on the power of corporate apathy. The conversations usually went like this:

Q: Do you work here?
A: No.
Q: You mean you're a contractor?
A: Actually, no.
Q: But then who's paying you?
A: No one.
Q: How do you live?
A: I live simply.
Q: (Incredulously) What are you doing here?!

At that point I'd give a demo and explain that the project had been canceled but that I was staying to finish it anyway. Since I had neither a mortgage nor a family, I could afford to live off savings. Most engineers at Apple had been through many canceled projects and completely understood my motivation.

Apple at that time had a strong tradition of skunkworks projects, in which engineers continued to work on canceled projects in hopes of producing demos that would inspire management to revive them. On occasion, they succeeded. One project, appropriately code-named Spectre, was canceled and restarted no fewer than five times. Engineers worked after hours on their skunkworks, in addition to working full time on their assigned projects. Greg and I, as nonemployees who had no daytime responsibilities, were merely extending this tradition to the next level.



In September, Apple Facilities tried to move people into our officially empty offices. They noticed us. The Facilities woman assumed that I had merely changed projects and had not yet moved to my new group, something that happened all the time. She asked what group I worked in, since it would be that group's responsibility to find me space. When I told her the truth, she was not amused. She called Security, had them cancel our badges, and told us in no uncertain terms to leave the premises.

We were saved by the layoffs that began that month. Twenty percent of Apple's fifteen thousand workers lost their jobs, but Greg and I were safe because we weren't on the books in the first place and didn't officially exist. Afterwards, there were plenty of empty offices. We found two and started sneaking into the building every day, waiting out in front for real employees to arrive and casually tailgating them through the door. Lots of people knew us and no one asked questions, since we wore our old badges as decoys.

We were making great progress, but we couldn't get it done alone. Creating sophisticated software requires a team effort. One person can use smoke and mirrors to make a demo that dazzles an audience. But shipping that to a million customers will expose its flaws and leave everyone looking bad. It is a cliche in our business that the first 90 percent of the work is easy, the second 90 percent wears you down, and the last 90 percent - the attention to detail - makes a good product. Making software that is simultaneously easy to learn, easy to use, friendly, useful, and powerful takes people with an incredible combination of skills, talent, and artistry working together with intensity and patience. Greg and I could do the core engineering, but that was a far cry from creating a finished product.

Among other things, we needed professional quality assurance (QA), the difficult and time-consuming testing that would show us the design flaws and implementation bugs we couldn't see in our own work. Out of nowhere, two QA guys we had never met approached us, having heard about our venture through the rumor mill. (We had become a kind of underground cause célèbre.) Their day job, QA-ing system software, was mind-numbingly boring. They volunteered to help us, saying, "Let's not tell our boss about this, OK?" One guy had a Ph.D. in mathematics; the other had previously written mathematical software himself. They were a godsend. They started right away.

Next, we needed help writing software to draw the three-dimensional images that our software produced. A friend with expertise in this area took a weekend off from his startup company to write all of this software. He did in two days what would have taken me a month.

My skunkworks project was beginning to look real with help from these professionals as well as others in graphic design, documentation, programming, mathematics, and user interface. The secret to programming is not intelligence, though of course that helps. It is not hard work or experience, though they help, too. The secret to programming is having smart friends.



There was one last pressing question: How could we get this thing included with the system software when the new machines shipped? The thought that we might fail to do this terrified me far more than the possibility of criminal prosecution for trespass. All the sweat that Greg and I had put in, all the clandestine aid from the friends, acquaintances, and strangers on whom I had shamelessly imposed, all the donations of time, expertise, hardware, soft drinks, and junk food would be wasted.

Once again, my sanity was saved by the kindness of a stranger. At 2:00 one morning, a visitor appeared in my office: the engineer responsible for making the PowerPC system disk master. He explained things this way: "Apple is a hardware company. There are factories far away building Apple computers. One of the final steps of their assembly line is to copy all of the system software from the 'Golden Master' hard disk onto each computer's hard disk. I create the Golden Master and FedEx it to the manufacturing plant. In a very real and pragmatic sense, I decide what software does and does not ship." He told me that if I gave him our software the day before the production run began, it could appear on the Golden Master disk. Then, before anyone realized it was there, thirty thousand units with our software on the disks would be boxed in a warehouse. (In retrospect, he may have been joking. But we didn't know that, so it allowed us to move forward with confidence.)

Once we had a plausible way to ship, Apple became the ideal work environment. Every engineer we knew was willing to help us. We got resources that would never have been available to us had we been on the payroll. For example, at that time only about two hundred PowerPC chips existed in the world. Most of those at Apple were being used by the hardware design engineers. Only a few dozen coveted PowerPC machines were even available in System Software for people working on the operating system. We had two. Engineers would come to our offices at midnight and practically slip machines under the door. One said, "Officially, this machine doesn't exist, you didn't get it from me, and I don't know you. Make sure it doesn't leave the building."

In October, when we thought we were almost finished, engineers who had been helping us had me demonstrate our software to their managers. A dozen people packed into my office. I didn't expect their support, but I felt obliged to make a good-faith effort to go through their official channels. I gave a twenty-minute demonstration, eliciting "oohs" and "ahhs." Afterward, they asked, "Who do you report to? What group are you in? Why haven't we seen this earlier?" I explained that I had been sneaking into the building and that the project didn't exist. They laughed, until they realized I was serious. Then they told me, "Don't repeat this story."



The director of PowerPC software was an academic on leave from Dartmouth. The director of PowerPC marketing was the son of a math teacher. Seeing the value of putting this educational software on every Macintosh in every school, they promptly adopted us.

Then things got really weird. The QA manager assigned people to test our product. (I didn't tell him that those people were already working on it.) The localization group assigned people to translate it into twenty languages. The human interface group ran a formal usability study. I was at the center of a whirlwind of activity. Nevertheless, Greg and I still had to sneak into the building. The people in charge of the PowerPC project, upon which the company's future depended, couldn't get us badges without a purchase order. They couldn't get a purchase order without a signed contract. They couldn't get a contract without approval from Legal, and if Legal heard the truth, we'd be escorted out of the building.

Greg was lurking outside one day, trying to act casual, when another engineer accosted him and said, "I'm sick and tired of you guys loitering in front of the building every day!" Later he phoned the appropriate bureaucrats on our behalf. I listened to his side of the conversation for twenty minutes: "No, there is no PO, because we're not paying them. No, there is no contract, because they are not contractors. No, they are not employees; we have no intention of hiring them. Yes, they must have building access because they are shipping code on our box. No, we don't have a PO number. There is no PO, because we're not paying them." Finally, he wore them down. They said to use the standard form to apply for badges, but to cross out Contractor and write in Vendor. Where it asked for a PO number, we were to use the magic words "No dollar contract." We got badges the next day. They were orange Vendor badges, the same kind the people working in the cafeteria, watering the plants, and fixing the photocopy machines had.

Official recognition made life exciting. Suddenly even more people became enthusiastically involved. When formal usability testing with students and teachers began, we discovered, again, that we were far from being done.

I had long been proud of the elegance and simplicity of our design. I wanted our program to ship with every Macintosh, so I had designed it for all users, even those who know little about computers and hate math. I wanted to make mathematics as easy and enjoyable as playing a game. In a classroom, any time spent frustrated with the computer is time taken away from teaching. Sitting behind a one-way mirror, watching first-time users struggle with our software, reminded me that programmers are the least qualified people to design software for novices. Humbled after five days of this, Greg and I went back and painstakingly added feedback to the software, as if we were standing next to users, explaining it ourselves.

Our recognition made life interesting in other ways since we could no longer remain a well kept secret. After a demo to outside developers, one person called Apple claiming that we infringed his patent, causing a fire drill until I could show prior art. Another company, the makers of Mathematica™, simply demanded that our product be pulled. Apple very politely declined. One week we were evading security, the next week Apple is rising to our defense.

By November, we were in full crunch mode, working sixteen hours a day, seven days a week, and feeling the pressure. The home stretch was a blur - wake up, grab a bagel, eat it while driving, work till we drop, sleep, repeat. If this story were a movie, you would now see the clock hand spinning and the calendar pages blowing away in the wind.

We finished in January 1994. Graphing Calculator has been part of the Macintosh ever since. Teachers around the world use it as an animated blackboard to illustrate abstract concepts visually. It shipped on more than twenty million machines. It never officially existed.



Why did Greg and I do something so ludicrous as sneaking into an eight-billion-dollar corporation to do volunteer work? Apple was having financial troubles then, so we joked that we were volunteering for a nonprofit organization. In reality, our motivation was complex. Partly, the PowerPC was an awesome machine, and we wanted to show off what could be done with it; in the Spinal Tap idiom, we said, "OK, this one goes to eleven." Partly, we were thinking of the storytelling value. Partly, it was a macho computer guy thing - we had never shipped a million copies of software before. Mostly, Greg and I felt that creating quality educational software was a public service. We were doing it to help kids learn math. Public schools are too poor to buy software, so the most effective way to deliver it is to install it at the factory.

Beyond this lies another set of questions, both psychological and political. Was I doing this out of bitterness that my project had been canceled? Was I subversively coopting the resources of a multinational corporation for my own ends? Or was I naive, manipulated by the system into working incredibly hard for its benefit? Was I a loose cannon, driven by arrogance and ego, or was I just devoted to furthering the cause of education?

I view the events as an experiment in subverting power structures. I had none of the traditional power over others that is inherent to the structure of corporations and bureaucracies. I had neither budget nor headcount. I answered to no one, and no one had to do anything I asked. Dozens of people collaborated spontaneously, motivated by loyalty, friendship, or the love of craftsmanship. We were hackers, creating something for the sheer joy of making it work.



After six months of grueling unpaid labor, Greg couldn't explain to his parents what he had done. They didn't use computers, and the only periodical they read was the New York Times. So as the project was winding down, I asked Greg if he wanted his photo in the Times so his parents would know what he was up to. He gave the only possible response: "Yeah, right." We made a bet for dinner at Le Mouton Noir, a fine French restaurant in Saratoga. To be honest, I expected to lose, but I made a phone call. Greg doesn't bet against me any more: On March 11, 1994, the front page of the Times business section contained an article on the alliance among Apple, IBM, and Motorola, picturing Greg and me in my front yard with a view of the Santa Cruz Mountains. Someone I knew in Apple Public Relations was livid. I had asked if she wanted to send someone for the interview, but she had said that engineers are not allowed to talk with the press. It's hard to enforce that kind of thing with people who can't be fired. It was positive press for Apple, though, and our parents were pleased.

We wanted to release a Windows version as part of Windows 98, but sadly, Microsoft has effective building security.

Postscript: After the events described, we made everything retroactively legitimate by licensing the software to Apple for distribution. Pacific Tech started a few years later, and continued to develop Graphing Calculator, both in new free versions that Apple bundled with Mac OS 8 and Mac OS 9, and commercial releases. Visit http://www.PacificT.com/FreeStuff.html to download the software.

The Graphing Calculator Story

Hotel Rwanda (2004) - This year's Schindler's List

Story of a man who saved 1,000 lives at a great risk to his own -- law

Hotel Rwanda starred Don Cheadle and was directed by Terry George. It's based on a true event, about Paul Rusesabagina, a Hutu who worked at four star hotel in Kigali. When the war broke out he thought of only saving his immediate family but as he saw what was happening he opened the hotel to Tutsi and Hutus seeking refuge from the killing. He used all the favours he had stored as manager of the hotel and basically saved over a thousand lives. This will be the next Schindler's list. When the film was over [Toronto International Film Festival] there was a standing ovation. Don Cheadle was excellent as an ordinary man forced to do extra-ordinary things. Paul Rusesabagina and his family attended the screening and he received a five minute standing ovation. Even Michael Moore came to see this movie. I highly recommend it. 9/10

Hotel Rwanda (2004)

Molly Ivins: American Media.. like Charlie Brown and the football

It’s hard to imagine any group more credulous than the American media in relation to this administration. It’s like Charlie Brown and the football.


Iraq situation merits some thinking

AUSTIN, Texas — It’s hard to make Iraq into a suitable Christmas topic, unless one bears news of Our Boys getting home-knit socks and home-baked cookies from Lard Lake or Fluterville. Mere mention is enough to drive full-grown adults to doctored eggnog. Nevertheless, since the season should require us to do at least some thinking about the killing being done in our name, let’s do a reality check.

The Sabbath gasbags, as The Nation’s Calvin Trillin calls our Sunday TV news commentators, distinguished themselves yet again. They’re trying to gang up on Donald Rumsfeld on the theory that the entire Iraq war would have worked out just dandy if it hadn’t been for Rumsfeld’s mistakes.

This shark attack was precipitated by blood in the water — to wit, Rumsfeld’s dismissive answer to a soldier inquiring as to why his unit’s vehicles weren’t armored. Rumsfeld treated the soldier exactly the way he treats members of the press or anyone else who raises questions about the war: as though he were an impertinent fool. It didn’t look good on television.
- advertisement-

For those now waxing indignant about Rumsfeld and the whole situation concerning armor, I remind you that when “60 Minutes” carried exactly this story in October, as did other news outlets, the right wing promptly pounced on it as further evidence of supposed liberal bias in the media.

Rumsfeld’s mistakes may constitute an impressive list, but is there any evidence that this war could ever have worked out well? I know, anyone who asks that question is promptly denounced by the right wing, insisting, as the media watchdog group FAIR puts it, “that the war is going well and anyone who feels otherwise is a defeatist liberal uninterested in bringing democracy to the Middle East.”

So far, we have not brought democracy to Iraq. We have brought blood, killing and death. Our so-called liberal media do a pathetically inadequate job of telling us about the war because, first, it is too dangerous to cover most of the country, and second, reporters who are critical of the endeavor are blacklisted by our military. The few American reporters who speak Arabic are sending hair-raising reports.

For evidence that the whole enterprise needed to be rethought from the beginning, I cite the Los Angeles Times story from June about the iconic image of this war — the toppling of the statue of Saddam Hussein in the great square in Baghdad. It was actually a U.S. Army psy-ops stunt staged to look like a spontaneous action by Iraqis.

“It was a Marine colonel — not joyous Iraqi civilians, as was widely assumed from the TV images — who decided to topple the statue, the Army report said. And it was a quick-thinking Army psychological operations team that made it appear to be a spontaneous Iraqi undertaking.”

From then ‘til this past election, when Bush kept insisting no more troops were necessary, we have been treated like mushrooms. On Dec. 1, the administration announced 12,000 more troops would be added, mostly by extending the tours of those due to come home and drafting very surprised National Guardsmen.

It’s hard to imagine any group more credulous than the American media in relation to this administration. It’s like Charlie Brown and the football.

The latest talking point is that all the nay-sayers will be proven wrong and the elections in Iraq will work a treat. Well, OK, we all hope so. But what is the evidence? The attacks go up day after day — they’re coming from all over the country.

The U.S. response is that these attacks are the last gasp of a desperate insurgency trying to buffalo Iraqis before the elections, and it will all collapse after that. That is exactly what the administration told us before the “handover” to the puppet Iraqi government last June. The attacks went up from 20 to 30 to 50 and now to 100 a day.

Meanwhile, we keep bombing Iraqis. I sometimes think Americans don’t realize that. This is not “precision,” “pinpoint” bombing — it’s bombing. It kills innocent people. The best we can hope for from this election is that the Shiite slate endorsed by al-Sistani wins. That would be the slate pledged to ask the United States to leave the minute it gets in. With any luck, they’ll ask politely

The Charleston Gazette - Columns

12/22/2004

WHAT WE CAN DO

More directed at Vets, but good ideas for all -- law

WHAT WE CAN DO

We have to look for solutions that can come about without military action. I don't think the American people will stand for a series of wars like this.--Gen. Anthony Zinni , Ret. USMC


As veterans, reservists, active duty and military family members, we have a record of public service, sacrifice and experience that fellow citizens and public officials respect. We’ve paid our dues to exercise our constitutional right to express dissenting opinions even amid the heat of war. One voice may be ignored. But a concert of concerned voices is a powerful movement for change.


1) WRITE

Letters to editors at newspapers, news magazines, television and radio news and talk programs

Media Guide, LWV http://www.capwiz.com/lwv/dbq/media/

Op-ed (opinion) essays for newspapers, Internet web sites

Letters to members of Congress, President Bush, the United Nations

Congress.org http://www.congress.org/congressorg/home/
U.S. Senate http://www.senate.gov/
U.S. House of Representatives http://www.house.gov/
President Bush, White House http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact/
United Nations, Permanent Missions http://www.un.org/Overview/missions.htm


2) JOIN

Veterans’ organizations that work for peaceful resolutions

Bring Them Home Now http://www.bringthemhomenow.org/
Citizen Soldier http://www.citzen-soldier.org/
Iraq Veterans Against the War http://www.ivaw.net/
Veterans For Common Sense http://www.veteransforcommonsense.org/
Veterans For Peace http://www.veteransforpeace.org/
Vets For Justice http://www.vetsforjustice.com/
Vietnam Veterans Against The War http://www.vvaw.org/
Vietnam Veterans Of America http://www.vva.org/
Vietnam Veterans Of America Foundation http://www.vva.org/

Peace organizations and coalitions

Military Families Speak Out http://www.mfso.org/
Peace Action http://www.peace-action.org/
United for Peace & Justice http://www.unitedforpeace.org/
War Resisters League http://www.warresisters.org/
Win Without War http://www.winwithoutwarus.org/

Religious groups for peaceful resolutions

American Friends Service Committee http://www.afsc.org/
Fellowship of Reconciliation http://www.forusa.org/
Jewish Voice for Peace http://www.jewishvoiceforpeace.org/
Pax Christi http://www.paxchristiusa.org/


3) LOBBY

Elected officials

Guide to Elected Officials, LWV http://www.capwiz.com/lwv/dbq/officials/

Peace resolutions by municipal, county and state governments

Cities for Peace http://www.ips-dc.org/citiesforpeace/


4) PARTICIPATE

Citizen diplomacy and peace missions

Eisenhower's Legacy http://www.amarillosistercities.org/
Global Exchange http://www.globalexchange.org/
People to People International http://www.ptpi.org/
United Nations Association-USA http://www.unausa.org/

Elections and political campaigns

Moveon http://www.moveon.org/front/
Register for Peace http://www.tompaine.com/register/

Peace demonstrations

United for Peace & Justice http://www.unitedforpeace.org/

Petitions

Public debates

Teach-ins and forums


RESOURCES

Antiwar.com http://www.antiwar.com/
Center for Defense Information http://www.cdi.org/
Cpeace.com http://www.cpeace.com/
Foreign Policy in Focus http://www.fpif.org/
InTheseTimes.com http://www.inthesetimes.com/
Information Clearing House http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/
opensecrets.org http://www.opensecrets.org/
Thomas Paine Project http://www.wintersoldier.org/
Trap Rock Peace Center http://www.traprockpeace.org/
Truthout http://www.truthout.org/
US Institute of Peace http://www.usip.org/


Common Ground Common Sense

Turn Your Back On Bush!!!, Counter-Inaugural Protest Strategy

I wish you guys could moon Bush without getting their "moons" thrown in jail! -- law

Turn Your Back On Bush!!!, Counter-Inaugural Protest Strategy

Some organizing Americans who oppose Bush [are planning] to attend the Inaugural Parade on Jan 20 for the Turn Your Back On Bush (TYBOB) action. Organizers are planning a peaceful, non-violent, law-abiding protest for grassroots Democrats to express our oppostion to Bush by turning our backs on his motorcade at a given signal during the inaugural parade. The action is an innovative and mainstream strategy that will follow all the rules and regulations being posted by the Presidential Inaugural Committee (http://www.inaugural05.com/) in a atmosphere of extremely tight security. We will carry no signs, banners, posters or any other prohibited items and therefore expect to be allowed through the security checkpoints that are being established around a "red zone" security perimeter



Common Ground Common Sense:

Back to Iraq 3.0: Suicide bombing?!

The Pentagon blames a suicide bomber, but neglects to mention HOW IN HELL that bomber got inside a mess hall full of soldiers.

The suicide bomber explanation is too damn convenient for the Pentagon and raises A LOT of unanswered questions

How in hell did they get so far ? If insurgents had that kind of reach, wouldn’t they go for a bigger prize ?

Methinks it’s Pentagon BS speak to cover their Criminal Negligence

-law


QUOTE from Back To Iraq:

This.. [makes moot] the debate over whether the still-under-construction concrete dining facility was behind schedule. A concrete roof wouldn’t have made a whit of difference..

a suicide bomber could get on a Forward Operating Base, walk into a dining hall and blow himself up.

What the hell? How the hell does this happen? He must have had help from inside, which means the Iraqis working with U.S. forces in the bases have just had their lives changed forever. Whatever bonds of trust between Iraqis working with U.S. forces have been frayed — perhaps to the breaking point.

I’m just stunned that insurgents were able to get inside and do this.

Back to Iraq 3.0: Suicide bombing?!

THE COUP FLU, IT'S GOING AROUND

ON
INAUGURATION DAY
JANUARY 20, 2005



NO WORK
NO SCHOOL
NO SHOPPING"

Common Ground Common Sense: "

Jazz Funeral for Democracy - January 20, 2005

Jazz Funeral for Democracy - January 20, 2005

The Event

The Jazz Funeral for Democracy is a wake and funeral for the principles upon which America once stood. I



Traditional New Orleans jazz funeral entitled "A Wake for Peace": Jazz Funeral for Democracy timed to coincide with the inauguration of George W. Bush. Street theater encouraged. March, rally and inaugural ball featuring local New Orleans musicians.
WHERE

New Orleans, Louisiana.

Jazz Funeral for Democracy - January 20, 2005

Christmas in Baghdad

Point / Counterpoint w/ Deck the Halls

Deck the halls with shares of Hali (burton)
Fa la la la la la, la la la la.
Tis the season to be Oily
Fa la la la la la, la la la la.

Don we now our navy apparel,
Fa la la, la la la, la la la.
Troll Yahoo boards w/ lots of carols,
Fa la la la la la, la la la la.

See the blazing deficit before us,
Fa la la la la la, la la la la.
Sign the pork and join the chorus.
Fa la la la la la, la la la la.

Give to me all holy war treasures,
Fa la la, la la la, la la la.
While I lie PAs are needed measures,
Fa la la la la la, la la la la.

Fast away the world peace passes,
Fa la la la la la, la la la la.
Hail the empire, lads and lasses,
Fa la la, la la la, la la la.

Drive our SUVs, all together,
Fa la la la la la, la la la la.
Heedless of the global weather,
Fa la la la la la, la la la la."



>
> Deck the halls with boughs of non-endangered plant species...
> Fa la la la la la la la la...
>
> Tis the season to be self-actualizing...
> Fa la la la la la la la la...
>
> Don we now our alternate-lifestyle apparel!
> Fa la la la la la la la la...
>
> Toll the ancient non-denominational-winter-solstice-holiday carol...
> Fa la la la la la la la la...
>
> See the blazing log of non-denominational-winter-solstice-holiday-
> non-endangered wood before us...
> Fa la la la la la la la la...
>
> Play the harp without unnecessary brutality and join the chorus...
> Fa la la la la la la la la...
>
> Sing we emotionally stable in a collective group effort...
> Fa la la la la la la la la...
>
> Heedless of the weather patterns & despite the effects of global
> warming...
> Fa la la la la la la la la...
>
> Fast away the mature year passes...
> Fa la la la la la la la la...
>
> Hail the New Year without any implicit ageism, ye persons...
> Fa la la la la la la la la...
>
> Dance in a non-hierarchical manner in merry measure...
> Fa la la la la la la la la...
>
> While I tell of non-materialistic-non-denominational-winter-solstice-holiday
>
> treasure...
> Fa la la la la la la la la...
>
> Anon.

The little girl's name is Victoria Jo

From ShawneeWoman


"The little girl's name is Victoria Jo.

I posted this on another forum I participate in and do so here, as well:


the child

She lay snuggled in her Daddy's arms, the soft sounds of a newborn filled his heart, a heart that was torn and broken. 48 hours before this man had his whole life ahead of him and now he was left with his whole world in his hands and she was beautiful. Victoria Jo was her name and she was not due to be born for another month.

Another woman had decided that her mother was to be replaced by her. On Thursday this woman went to the humble home of this child's parents and did something horrific. She strangled little Victoria Jo's mother and cut open her uterus and delivered this child on a living room floor. She then drove several hours back to her home town and showed off 'her' new baby. Within hours the woman and the child were found, the baby returned to her Daddy and the woman sits in jail.

Victoria Jo has captured the hearts of many here in Missouri and all over the country. On Friday we watched through Amber Alert at the bottom of our TV screens, waiting for word of her safe return. The good word came and we all breathed a sigh of relief and then shed tears of joy.

A true Miracle!

Time Warner CEO: Richard D. Parsons

Time Warner CEO: Richard D. Parsons

Time has picked Bush for MAN OF THE YEAR. Time Warner's chairman and CEO is Richard Parsons.

Richard Parsons is also: President Bush's Social Security Commission Co-Chairman and Advocate for Social Security Privitization.

In December 2001 AOL Time Warner CEO Gerald Levin announced plans to retire in May 2002 and declared that Parsons would succeed him. The move surprised many media watchers who assumed that AOL Time Warner chief operating officer Robert Pittman would take the helm. Also in 2001, President Bush selected Parson to cochair a commission on Social Security. In addition, Parsons worked on the transition team for Michael Bloomberg, who was elected mayor of New York City in 2001.


Time Warner: Richard D. Parsons


Richard Parsons

Margins of Victory: Republican

Margins of Victory: Republican
by: wedothelying_youdothedying (500/M)
Msg: 874578 of 874578

Presidents Reelected During the Last Hundred Years

1904 Theodore Roosevelt: 17% Popular Vote; 196 Electoral Vote
1956 Dwight D. Eisenhower: 16% Popular Vote; 384 Electoral Vote
1972 Richard M. Nixon: 23% Popular Vote; 503 Electoral Vote
1984 Ronald Reagan: 18% Popular Vote; 512 Electoral Vote
2004 George W. Bush: 2% Popular Vote; 34 Electoral Vote

As these numbers show, incumbency is a huge advantage; nonetheless, Bush's reelection was a squeaker, the closest for a Republican in more than a century.

Yahoo! News Message Boards Politics News

'Twas Right Before Christmas

'Twas Right Before Christmas
by Randy Taylor

'Twas right before Christmas, when through the White House
Not a brain cell was stirring, least not from the Louse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas wouldn’t be there;

Jenna and Babs were all snug in their beds,
While visions of coat-tails danced in their heads;
And Laura in her 'kerchief, and George in his cap,
Were doing a few lines before a long winter's nap.

Secret Service was warned, Homeland Security on alert,
The perimeter was to be held against that liberal subvert!
Upon his throne, George dove into a snack,
And thought up another nation God wanted him to attack.

When on the Front Lawn there arose such a clatter,
George sprang up in horror to see what was the matter.
Away to the window he flew like a flash,
Put down the pretzels and threw up the sash.

The count from the polls in a corrupted state
Gave the illusion to King George that he got a mandate;
When, what to his fear-ridden eyes should appear,
But a peacenik sleigh, and eight progressive reindeer,

With a liberal old driver, so lively and quick,
He knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
More rapid than bald eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted the roll call by name;

"Now, DEAN! now, KUCINICH! now, GORE and CLINTON!
On, KERRY! on EDWARDS! on, OBAMA and FRANKEN!
To the top of the Hill! to another brick in the wall!
Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!"

St. Nick is a Democrat, so it says on the roll,
For generosity and freedom, and the promise they hold;
This pit stop for justice against unnatural selection,
Would take back for the people what George stole in the election.

And then, it was tinkling he heard on the roof;
The prancing and pawing of each left hoof.
As George called security and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.

He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
His red clothes made by outsourced manufacturers to boot;
A tire iron and empty sacks in his clutches,
Left George to fear going to his inaugural on crutches.

George’s guards did not arrive, left completely aghast,
For fear that even Kucinich would put a cap in their ass;
For financial destruction and a war without reason,
It was plain to the eye, it was Bush hunting season.

His eyes -- how they pierced! his presence was hard!
George wanted to flee as he did from the Guard!
Nick’s droll little mouth was drawn tight and pursed,
At the sight of the President history would see as our worst;

The stump of a pipe held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled smelled like Baghdad and Tikrit;
He had a stern look, and an involuntary twitch,
For the one who sold out our soldiers to benefit the rich.

He worked out to get buff, now a solid old elf,
And he saw all the gifts George kept for himself;
The squint in his eye and the shake of his head,
Soon told George he had everything to dread;

He showed his union card, then went straight to his work,
Took the gifts and stockings, then turned toward the jerk;
Gave Bush the finger, the middle one he chose,
Called him a thief, and up the chimney he rose.

He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But we heard him exclaim, ere he left without hitch,
"HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO ALL, EXCEPT THAT SON-OF-A-BITCH!"

Common Ground Common Sense

Democratic Underground Forums - psssst...Kerry is getting into the game tomorrow...

psssst...Kerry is getting into the game tomorrow.

..stay tuned...

...also, something fun on the Triad front will hopefully be ready by morning.

By WilliamPitt @

Democratic Underground Forums - psssst...Kerry is getting into the game tomorrow...

Daily Kos :: Soldier attacked by Troop-bashers

Soldier attacked by Troop-bashers
by Grand Moff TexanWed Dec 22nd, 2004 at 17:30:39 CDT

Or at least that would be the entry if this was coming from the left. Oh, wait, they already did make that claim.  

Meanwhile, back in the mind of a 'patriot:  


UPDATE: you can contact that cartoonist here


You'd think that onceSpc. Thomas Wilson spoke up and set the record straight about his workwith Pitts before hisconfrontaton with Rumsfeld would lead some people back to the issueat hand.  

But you'd have to be awfully naiive, wouldn't you?  

Short version?  

Reporter mentions they'd worked on the questions together. Rightwing media uses this as excuse to dodge issue (more on that later). Soldier says, yeah, he suggested I tone it down a bit, but I saidno. Right wing media continues to ignore issue.  

Need proof that the truth doesn't matter?  (who said irony was dead?)  

Thisis the truth.  

After his convoy arrived at Camp Arijan inKuwait, Wilson found hundreds of fully armored vehicles promised toanother unit months down the road. Wilson says he asked if the 278thcould use them in the meantime, and was told no. That inspired hisquestion about the shortage of armor, which he showed to Pitts.

The reporter, far from being the protagonist, suggested that hefind"a less brash way of asking the question," but Wilson "told him no,that I wanted to make my point very clear."

Wilson says he also came up with three alternate questions on hisown.

Thisis someone who can't handle the truth.  

The Muslim murderers global are rejoicingover the clamor to get rid of Mr. R. The enemies of the New Iraq are inglee that this non-issue is making the daily news these days. But thelevelheaded Republicans in charge are seeing that it's but a pea-bumpin the political road.

A bump in the road?  What, like this one?  

Wounded soldier maimed for life

Wilson is just "playing a game," he says.  He is "the enemy,"who has"many masks."  He is motivated by "madness and meanness."  Itis alljust "hate speech."  

You can reach this 'patriot' here

And hereone can find men so totally manly that they need a special publicationto help from the real world.  Now THAT's manly!  

[T]he new campaign to run him out ofWashington on a rail (how many have there been? I've lost track), hasnothing to do with any screw-ups of his.

The New York Times' role in this is the most obvious: They havealways hated Rumsfeld, because 1. He is an aggressive, Republicanadvocate for the President's policies, and: 2. See 1.

See?  It's not about these guys,

It's about this guy:  

See?  Now that's manly!  You can reach these tough guys here.  Actually, they need helpwith their code, apparently, so give 'em a call.  

Now, all these days later, NewsMax (don't laugh) has found someonewho's told Pitt's paper's competitor that he's pretty sure Wilson'sunit was going to get the armor anyway.  Assuming, for the moment,thatthat's true, why didn't anyone tell them?  Instead, they figuredtheywere just as screwed as all the other units without armor, and they'dresorted to hillbilly armor.  

So this new version of events, if true, may be great news.  Buttheproblem stands.  How many more are sent off without what it takesto dothe job?  

You see, this is why the war's opponents are told that they don'tsupport the troops by those who support the war.  It's called"projection."  

Look, nothing's going to burst the bubble of those who don't want itburst.  When the US Army, and even suits up at the Pentagon, aretalking about Halliburton's war-profiteering, we'll still have freeperstelling us we're 'fullof hate' (or some such evasive bullshit that keeps them from having to deal with the real world),just for talking about it at all.  

And so it doesn't matter one whit that the greyeminence at Rand Corp. (they of the 'kernel of evil' theory)says the Iraqi invasion has been buggered, or even if ol' Luttwakhimself (Reagan's pet jingoölogist) is saying what John Kerry was supposedly saying but wasn't.  

It doesn't matter.  People are ready to be ruled.  Facts are for traitors.  No analysis is useful except that which confirms ThePlan.  

(Would you invest money in a country that was run this way?)  

The war can still be won--but only by moderate Iraqis
and only if they concentrate their efforts on gaining the
cooperation of neighboring states, securing the support of
the broader international community, and quickly reducing
their dependence on the United States.

You could give Jesus H. Christ himself the byline on that, and"patriots" would still wipe their asses on it.  It just doesn'tmatter. 

Given all that has happened in Iraq to date, the best
strategy for the United States is disengagement.

What're you looking at me for?  You know the score.  

So, Iraq.  Just peachy.  Social Security?  Inmeltdown.  Hey, who're you going to believe?  Me or you'relyin' eyes?  

Ready.  To.  Be.  Ruled.  

Daily Kos :: Soldier attacked by Troop-bashers