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The Buying of the President 2004: Who's Really Bankrolling Bush and His Democratic Challengers -- and What They Expect in Return

The Buying of the President 2004: Who's Really Bankrolling Bush and His Democratic Challengers -- and What They Expect in Return

Arrogant Capital

Arrogant Capital

Great American Political Repair Manual

Sam Smith's Great American Political Repair Manual: How to Rebuild Our Country So the Politics Aren't Broken and Politicians Aren't Fixed

American Dynasty: Aristocracy, Fortune, and the Politics of Deceit in the House of Bush

American Dynasty: Aristocracy, Fortune, and the Politics of Deceit in the House of Bush

Death in the Air: Globalism, Terrorism & Toxic Warfare

Death in the Air: Globalism, Terrorism & Toxic Warfare

The Velvet Coup: The Constitution, the Supreme Court and the Decline of American Democracy

The Velvet Coup: The Constitution, the Supreme Court and the Decline of American Democracy

into the buzzsaw

Into the Buzzsaw: Leading Journalists Expose the Myth of the Free Press

Amazon Light

Stop Policeware

Campaign for Audiovisual Freedom

Just consider what current events will sound like two thousand years from now -- the greatest nation on Earth bombing some of the smallest and weakest for no clear reasons, people starving in parts of the world while farmers are paid not to plant crops in others, technophiles sitting at home playing electronic golf rahter than the real thing, and police forces ordered to arrest people who simply desire to ingest a psychoactive weed. People of that era will also likely laugh it all off as fantastic myths...

It is time for those who desire true freedom to exert themselves -- to fight back against the forces who desire domination through fear and disunity.

This does not have to involve violence. It can be done in small, simple ways, like not financing that new Sport Utility Vehicle, cutting up all but one credit card, not opting for a second mortgage, turning off that TV sitcom for a good book, asking questions and speaking out in church or synagogue, attending school board and city council meetings, voting for the candidate who has the least money, learning about the Fully Informed Jury movement and using it when called -- in general, taking responsibility for one's own actions. Despite the omnipresent advertising for the Lotto -- legalized government gambling -- there is no free lunch. Giving up one's individual power for the hope of comfort and security has proven to lead only to tyranny.

from Rule by Secrecy by Jim Marrs

You had to take those pieces of paper with you when you went shopping, though by the time I was nine or ten most people used plastic cards. . .It seems so primitive, totemistic even, like cowry shells. I must have used that kind of money myself, a little, before everything went on the Compubank.

I guess that's how they were able to do it, in the way they did, all at once, without anyone knowing beforehand. If there had still been portable money, it would have been more difficult.

It was after the catastrophe, when they shot the president and machine-gunned the Congress and the army declared a state of emergency. They blamed it on the Islamic fanatics, at the time.

Keep calm, they said on television. Everything is under control.

I was stunned. Everyone was, I know that. It was hard to believe. The entire government, gone like that. How did they get in, how did it happen?

That was when they suspended the Constitution. They said it would be temporary. There wasn't even any rioting in the streets. People stayed home at night, watching television, looking for some direction. There wasn't even an enemy you could put your finger on.

. . . Things continued on in that state of suspended animation for weeks, although some things did happen. Newspapers were censored and some were closed down, for security reasons they said. The roadblocks began to appear, and Identipasses. Everyone approved of that, since it was obvious you couldn't be too careful. They said that new elections would be held, but that it would take some time to prepare for them. The thing to do, they said, was to continue on as usual.

from The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood

By the time Oscar reached the outskirts of Washington, DC, The Louisiana air base had benn placed under siege.

The base's electrical power supply had long since been cut off for lack of payment. The aircraft had no fuel. The desperate federal troops were bartering stolen equipment for food and booze. Desertion was rampant. The air base commander had released a sobbing video confession and had shot himself.

Green Huey had lost patience with the long-festering scandal. He was moving in for the kill. Attacking and seizing an federal air base with his loyal state militia would have been entirely too blatant and straightforward. Instead the rogue Governor employed proxy guerrillas.

Huey had won the favor of nomad prole groups by providing them with safe havens. He allowed them to squat in Louisiana's many federally declared contamination zones. These forgotten landscapes were tainted with petrochemical effluent and hormone-warping pesticides, and were hence officially unfit for human settlement. The prole hordes had different opinions on that subject.

Proles cheerfully grouped in any locale where conventional authority had grown weak. Whenever the net-based proles were not constantly harassed by the authorities, they coalesced and grew ambitious. Though easily scattered by focused crackdowns, they regrouped as swiftly as a horde of gnats. With their reaping machines and bio-breweries, they could live off the land at the very base of the food chain. They had no stake in the established order, and they cherished a canny street-level knowledge of society's infrastructural weaknesses. They made expensive enemies. . .

Louisiana's ecologically blighted areas were ideal for proles. The disaster zones were also impromptu wildlife sanctuaries, since wild animals found chemical fouling much easier to survive than the presence of human beings. After decades of wild subtropical growth, Louisiana's toxic dumps were as impenetrable as Sherwood Forest.

from Distraction by Bruce Sterling


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Saturday, December 13, 2003

Surprise surprise file:

Hundreds of articles in medical journals claiming to be written by academics or doctors have been penned by ghostwriters in the pay of drug companies
The journals, bibles of the profession, have huge influence on which drugs doctors prescribe and the treatment hospitals provide. But The Observer has uncovered evidence that many articles written by so-called independent academics may have been penned by writers working for agencies which receive huge sums from drug companies to plug their products.

Estimates suggest that almost half of all articles published in journals are by ghostwriters. While doctors who have put their names to the papers can be paid handsomely for "lending" their reputations, the ghostwriters remain hidden. They, and the involvement of the pharmaceutical firms, are rarely revealed.


"We are being hoodwinked by the drug companies. The articles come in with doctors' names on them and we often find some of them have little or no idea about what they have written," he said.

"When we find out, we reject the paper, but it is very difficult. In a sense, we have brought it on ourselves by insisting that any involvement by a drug company should be made explicit. They have just found ways to get round this and go undercover."

11:56 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

US leaving 75 tons of "harmless" depleted uranium in wake of Iraq War [u]

11:47 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

With a heavy dose of fear and violence, and a lot of money for projects, I think we can convince these people that we are here to help them. - Lt. Col Nathan Sasserman [u]

11:39 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Good overview of shrubco's obsession with secrecy
For the past three years, the Bush administration has quietly but efficiently dropped a shroud of secrecy across many critical operations of the federal government--cloaking its own affairs from scrutiny and removing from the public domain important information on health, safety, and environmental matters. The result has been a reversal of a decades-long trend of openness in government while making increasing amounts of information unavailable to the taxpayers who pay for its collection and analysis. Bush administration officials often cite the September 11 attacks as the reason for the enhanced secrecy. But as the Inauguration Day directive from Card indicates, the initiative to wall off records and information previously in the public domain began from Day 1. Steven Garfinkel, a retired government lawyer and expert on classified information, puts it this way: "I think they have an overreliance on the utility of secrecy. They don't seem to realize secrecy is a two-edge sword that cuts you as well as protects you."

11:33 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

End of civil liberites file:

FBI searches and warrants no longer under criminal court oversight

Just "secret intelligence courts," and you know what that means...

6:42 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Friday, December 12, 2003


A 46 percent surge in the price of natural gas since Thanksgiving has been so startling, one analyst has suggested the futures markets should be investigated.

I heard about the shortage of natural gas months ago. What's the big surprise?

Not that prices aren't being manipulated, natch.

9:59 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Mark your calendar

OPEC nations demand reparations if world turns to renewable energy sources

With peak oil around the corner, they see the writing on the wall.

This feels kind of historic to me.

And laughable. What's stopping them from developing alternative technologies?

9:54 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

"Flu outbreak expected to reach epidemic level"

Experts now will only say that this year's flu will "probably not reach pandemic scale"

The backstepping has been pretty vigorous this week, and public faith in the health system must be declining apace. Not that there aren't many factors involved, but along with yesterday's story on the inefficacy of drugs in general, this is becoming a big issue.

For background on this, Laurie Garrett's site would be a good place to start. I read The Coming Plague a few years ago so I could see this coming.

Do whatever you can to support and boost your immune system. I am deeply ambivalent about vaccines; use your intuition.

6:14 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

FAIR analysis of ABC's response to Kucinich (Sharpton/Moseley-Braun) supporters
The Note argues that ABC has done a better job of covering Kucinich and other candidates than other media outlets. Given that most broadcast outlets have done a very poor job of covering any of the candidates for president, this is a low standard to hold oneself to. We would prefer to judge ABC News by its stated "commitment to make sure many political voices are heard in our democracy," and by its declared intention to cover campaigns "in a way that will help voters make their decisions."

Finally, The Note's discussion of Arons' coverage of the Kucinich campaign obscures the fact that almost none of it has appeared on ABC's television network, through which ABC News reaches the bulk of its audience. Until the recent debate, Kucinich's name had not even been spoken on Nightline, probably ABC's most prestigious news show; World News Tonight, its main daily news report, had four mentions of Kucinich, only one of which even indicated any of his policy positions-- a half-sentence reference to his promise to withdraw troops from Iraq. Sharpton has not been given any more coverage on World News Tonight; Carol Moseley Braun has received even less. ABC's Sunday morning talk show This Week devoted a segment to interviews with the three candidates (11/30/03), which host George Stephanopoulos introduced by asking, "Why do they run when winning isn't an option?"

Given that there will no longer be anyone from ABC News traveling with these campaigns, the odds are great that the near-invisibility of these candidates will only worsen. While we're glad to hear that ABC News seeks to help voters make decisions, their coverage so far of Kucinich, Sharpton and Moseley Braun has left voters who rely on ABC television news almost entirely in the dark.

5:56 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

shrubco haunted by trip to Iraq: Stars and Stripes reports some soldiers excluded from ceremony and UK flight controllers are claiming that the flight broke international regulations [drudge]

Not that shrubco gives a shit, but it looks bad in an election campaign.

1:53 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

A senior executive with Britain's biggest drugs company has admitted that most prescription medicines do not work on most people who take them [Unknown News]
Drug efficacy rate in per cent

Alzheimer's: 30
Analgesics (Cox-2): 80
Asthma: 60
Cardiac Arrhythmias: 60
Depression (SSRI): 62
Diabetes: 57
Hepatitis C (HCV): 47
Incontinence: 40
Migraine (acute): 52
Migraine (prophylaxis) 50
Oncology: 25
Rheumatoid arthritis 50
Schizophrenia: 60

Dr Roses has a formidable reputation in the field of "pharmacogenomics" - the application of human genetics to drug development - and his comments can be seen as an attempt to make the industry realize that its future rests on being able to target drugs to a smaller number of patients with specific genes.
So now they can admit it...

2:29 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Thursday, December 11, 2003

White collar crime isn't really crime file

HealthSouth fraudsters let off easy

7:13 PM -
[Link] - Comments ()

Bringin' 'em democracy -- dead or alive file

Iraq to Stop Counting Civilian Dead
Dr. Nagham Mohsen, the head of the ministry's statistics department, said the order came from the ministry's director of planning, Dr. Nazar Shabandar, who told her it was on behalf of Abbas. She said the U.S.-led Coalition Provisional Authority, which oversees the ministry, didn't like the idea of the count either.

"We have stopped the collection of this information because our minister didn't agree with it," she said, adding: "The CPA doesn't want this to be done."

Abbas, whose secretary said he was out of the country, sent an e-mail denying the charge.

7:09 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Hersh on the move to Special Ops teams in Iraq -- and the ghost of the Phoenix program
"There are people saying all sorts of wild things about Manhunts," he said. "But they aren't at the policy level. It's not a no-holds policy, and it shouldn't be. I'm as tough as anybody, but we're also a democratic society, and we don't fight terror with terror. There will be a lot of close controls -- do's and don'ts and rules of engagement." The adviser added, "The problem is that we've not penetrated the bad guys. The Baath Party is run like a cell system. It's like penetrating the Vietcong -- we never could do it."


The requirement that America's Special Forces units operate in secrecy, a former senior coalition adviser in Baghdad told me, has provided an additional incentive for increasing their presence in Iraq. The Special Forces in-country numbers are not generally included in troop totals. Bush and Rumsfeld have insisted that more American troops are not needed, but that position was challenged by many senior military officers in private conversations with me. "You need more people," the former adviser, a retired admiral, said. "But you can't add them, because Rummy's taken a position. So you invent a force that won't be counted."

1:17 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Wednesday, December 10, 2003

Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi slams "terror war" as excuse to "restrict human rights and basic freedoms"

11:52 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

BigMedia decides who you vote for file:

Al Giordano on Kucinich's skewering of Ted Koppel at the NH debate and ABC's decision to stop covering Kucinich as punishment
Anybody want to do a word count comparing how many words Koppel allowed Dean as compared to Kucinich, who he kept cutting off?

The coup d'grace probably arrived this morning in Howard Kurtz's Washington Post profile on Koppel, which started as a puff piece but ended on a sour note for ABC's airhead, when Kucinich press secretary Jeff Cohen declared - and it's objectively true! - Koppel as the big loser of the debate.

So, now what?

A day later ABC pulls its reporter off the Kucinich campaign. Simultaneously, it pulls reporters off the two black candidates, but ABC was planning on doing that anyway.

Now, according to ABC, it's down to the country club of rich kids who, ABC feels, can be trusted not to rock the boat:

The Dean, Kerry, Gephardt, Clark, Lieberman, and Edwards campaigns all understand what has just happened. A hardball hush has fallen over all of them, over all of you, and me, and the entire campaign:

Dennis Kucinich has just been punished - his campaign will now be censored from ABC News (and watch how the "competing" news orgs follow suit) - for having had the guts to stand up to the Commercial Media's inauthentic, pay-per-view, "journalism" at last night's debate.

11:49 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

International Human Rights Day

Mauritanian anti-slavery group banned and persecuted by government

You can send an email to appropriate authorities here.

11:40 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

US indicates it will move forward on its strategy to encircle Russia with bases, as it cozies up to China

11:17 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

Hospitals punished by Medicare for improving health care [u]
By better educating doctors about the most effective pneumonia treatments, Intermountain Health Care, a network of 21 hospitals in Utah and Idaho, says it saves at least 70 lives a year. By giving the right drugs at discharge time to more people with congestive heart failure, Intermountain saves another 300 lives annually and prevents almost 600 additional hospital stays.

But under Medicare, none of these good deeds go unpunished.

Intermountain says its initiatives have cost it millions of dollars in lost hospital admissions and lower Medicare reimbursements. In the mid-90's, for example, it made an average profit of 9 percent treating pneumonia patients; now, delivering better care, it loses an average of several hundred dollars on each case.

11:45 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Boston will begin buying drugs from Canada for state employees this summer

4:37 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Military/Government referrals + origination
anthony gancarski bio [HUD]
hybird cars pictures [DoD]
jazeera sunni difference shia [Army 5th Signal Command]
dreamcatcher doo rags [DoD]
dining table in set of Everybody loves Raymond's parents kitchen [DoD]
doj aircraft in boneyard [GAO]
"rudi bakhtiar pics" [Wright-Patterson AFB]
ambassador khalilzad biography [DoS]
tuition loan forgiveness for us veterans of iraq war [DoD]
"Organized crime" and "Philidelphia" [Maricopa County AZ]
video clip of Spc. Clinton Deitz [Defense Information School]
thawra district advisory council [1114th Signal Battalion Army]
boondocks + bush + hitler + 10/13/02 [Exec Offc Asset Forfeiture]
notifier law suites [Idaho Nat Engineering Lab]
"carla javits" and bio [Executive Office Of The President USA]
So someone from the Oval Office was looking up the president and CEO of the Corporation for Supportive Housing in Oakland, Calif. and wound up at my site (see bottom post), one of only 2 results.


12:59 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

xymphora on the highly suspect arrest and detention of Capt. James Yousef Yee, a former Army chaplain at Guantanamo Bay
Yee was originally charged with disobeying orders, mishandling classified information, and stealing classified information on behalf of suspected members of al-Qaeda and Taliban who he had counseled in the Guantanamo Bay concentration camp. Reading between the lines it is fairly obvious that his real crime was taking his duties of chaplaincy too seriously and actually trying to help some of the prisoners, which probably rubbed some Army hard-ass the wrong way. It is also possible that he was arrested to preclude him from speaking out on the horrible conditions faced by the prisoners...
Yee was released and then charged with adultery and downloading pornography!

How old & obvious is that scam, trying to smear someone who has information that could embarrass a government? It's like something out of a B-movie.

12:22 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Monday, December 08, 2003

Some interesting points made by Michael Kane at the "public" meeting last week on the August blackout [Global Elite]
The first point Michael made was that the Task Force Interim Report failed to address the possibility of Electro Magnetic Pulses causing the blackout. He noted that it is known HAARP was turned on at 4pm on August 14th, just 11 minutes before the blackout occurred. He stated the Air Force should be contacted and required to turn over all documentation pertaining to what HAARP was used for on that day.

Michael detailed the aerial aerosol spray operation he witnessed the night of the blackout, as well as referencing the proximity of the Determined Promise '03 national military drills announced just one day after the blackout. He also mentioned he received a report that the Canadian border was militarized at 1pm on August 14th, just three hours before the blackout, in the Mohawk River Valley region. Why?

[Canadian panel member] Dr. Nawal Kamel appeared to be pleased to hear Mr. Kane's comments, as he was the only person who appealed to the Task Force as a citizen void of any special interest.

11:48 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Missed this item on shrubco's flushing Max Cleland from the 9/11 Commission last month

Cleland was "one of the few commissioners untainted by conflict of interest problems and certainly the most outspoken with regard to the facts," according to Kyle Hence of the 9/11 Family Steering Committee (email newsletter). He suggests petitioning Daschle to nominate Kristen Breithieser of the FSC as a replacement... Here's her statement to the Joint Committees on Intelligence.

10:39 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

"This is the last land grab they can get their hands on"

Disadvantaged Maori may protest nationalization of beaches and seabed in New Zealand

12:48 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Campaign issues that will not be addressed file

The Betrayal of Work: How Low-Wage Jobs Fail 30 Million Americans and Their Families by Beth Shulman (website with intro to book)
Low-wage workplaces are often physically damaging and emotionally degrading. High injury rates plague these workers. Constant surveillance, time clocks, drug testing, and rigid rules reinforce the pervasive sense that employers view them as untrustworthy. Fear is the chief motivator in these workplaces. Being five minutes late can mean the difference between having a job and not. A few minutes too long in the bathroom could mean discipline or a dock in pay. It is not surprising that with so little employer respect, these workers receive minimal training and few opportunities for input into their jobs. In fact, in most low-wage workplaces voicing one's opinion is discouraged.
What a different country this would be if people got paid a living wage, respect from their employers and a chance to offer more of themselves in their work.

In ten years this will be a third of the workforce.

12:42 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

I remember thinking years ago that there were too many strip malls and that someday people would end up living in them [u]

12:21 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

"For every step Kucinich takes, Edwards is seemingly there to remind him that a man cannot succeed in a world designed for children"

We're not ready for a serious president
Welcome to the Dennis Kucinich paradox. The congressman is not serious precisely because he is serious. Because he wants his victory to mean something, he is said to not really want to win. Pundits and journalists talk a lot about Kucinich's height and his decidedly non-Hollywood looks as the main reasons he cannot be considered a contender, but on the campaign trail, it sure looks like Kucinich's chief "problem" is that when he talks, he means it.

12:18 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Iraq War shrinking Reserve ranks [u]

12:12 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Sunday, December 07, 2003

An early winter storm in the Northeast is one thing -- the worst thunderstorm in Melbourne Australia in 100 years, severe and unseasonal flooding in southern France (Lyons had 4" in 24 hours) and a named Caribbean tropical storm in December is another (no precedent exists for this last in the historical record)

3:27 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

You can trust us, we're scientists file:

Study quoted in highly publicized Science magazine article revealed to be bullshit
In September, the journal Science issued a startling retraction.

A primate study it published in 2002, with heavy publicity, warned that the amount of the drug Ecstasy that a typical user consumes in a single night might cause permanent brain damage.

It turned out that the $1.3 million study, led by Dr. George A. Ricaurte of Johns Hopkins University, had not used Ecstasy at all. His 10 squirrel monkeys and baboons had instead been injected with overdoses of methamphetamine, and two of them had died. The labels on two vials he bought in 2000, he said, were somehow switched.


It was not the first time Dr. Ricaurte's lab was accused of using flawed studies to suggest that recreational drugs are highly dangerous.

2:14 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Not Particularly Relevant

NPR's lies about "impartial" sources
...NPR's disingenuousness extends beyond the example cited by Sullum below. For example, on today's 'Morning Edition' two institutions whose officials were interviewed at length were called non-partisan. They are anything but.

One is the Center for Strategic and International Studies, which gets a more objective description from Public Eye: "The Center for Strategic and International Studies is a right-wing, neo-conservative think tank."

The same 'nonpartisan' label was applied to a Pew Trust operation. Pew can be more accurately described as a leading funder of the extremist middle - the civil society do what you want but do it politely and they won't notice crowd. It has even taken congress members off on retreats to teach them civil discourse. They cover their tracks by funding both right and left, as the Left Business Observer has reported: "One of the trusts founded by the Sun Oil heirs, the J. Howard Pew Freedom Trust, was established to 'acquaint the American people with the evils of bureaucracy... and with the values of a free point out the false promises of Socialism....' In one cozy office the staff of the Pew Charitable Trusts now give out $21 million a year of the J. Howard Pew Freedom Trust both to right-wing groups like the Heritage Foundation, the Manhattan Institute, and the National Right to Work gang - and to crunchy groups like the Tides Foundation and the Pesticide Action Network, under terms of a different Pew heir's will."

Jacob Sullum - Bruce Mirken of the Marijuana Policy Project reports an amusing e-mail exchange he recently had with NPR ombudsman Jeffrey Dvorkin about the radio network's policy regarding the identification of sponsors. Mirken noted that an announcement during Morning Edition "refers to the underwriter as 'ONDCP,' followed by a short tag line about how parents should be involved in their kids' lives. The use of an acronym unfamiliar to most listeners, combined with the ultra-innocuous tag line, seems calculated to obscure the fact that the underwriter is in fact the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy."

2:06 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Did Bush go to Iraq?
All we really saw was Bush in a tent with soldiers. The few members of the press were taken from plane to car to plane with no real ground time to see if where they were was actually Iraq. They were not allowed to activate their cell phones or call out during the trip. Was it Iraq? Was it Pakistan? Perhaps Israel? Or maybe a U.S. base in the desert southwest right here in the states?

Like the co-called WMD, we have no confirmation on this field trip. Why were no international press stationed in Iraq invited (even without prior knowledge) to this event. Of the more than 7,000 reporters in Iraq, not a single one can confirm the visit.

1:26 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Sorry, that was no 757

New scientific study of Pentagon attack on 9/11

1:22 AM - [Link] - Comments ()


from Sassafrass (9/23/02)
"Unconventional viewpoints at 'charging the canvas'

Opinions that will ruffle feathers, from someone who clearly knows their way around information and the blogosphere."

Blog of the Day


In the eyes of posterity it will inevitably seem that, in safeguarding our freedom, we destroyed it; that the vast clandestine apparatus we built up to probe our enemies' resources and intentions only served in the end to confuse our own purposes; that the practice of deceiving others for the good of the state led infallibly to our deceiving ourselves; and that the vast army of intelligence personnel built up to execute these purposes were soon caught up in the web of their own sick fantasies, with disastrous consequences to them and us.

-- Malcolm Muggeridge

Next the statesmen will invent cheap lies, putting the blame upon the nation that is attacked, and every man will be glad of those conscience-soothing falsities, and will diligently study them, and refuse to examine any refutations of them; and thus he will by and by convince himself that the war is just, and will thank God for the better sleep he enjoys after this process of grotesque self-deception.

-- Mark Twain

(link to list against Iraq War)


Philip K. Dick


PR Watch

The Link Section


The Global Beat
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newshub top 25
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questions, questions...
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Aron's Israel Peace Weblog
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Schizm Matrix
boing boing
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stock market
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The Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund
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Amer. Booksellers Found. Free Expression
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Working for Change
Contract with the Planet
Unmarried America
Physicians for a National Health Program


insound (music and mags) (books & music cheap)
Web Source Sales (ink carts cheap)

Invisible Web search


[Get Opera!]


They were past the motels now, condos on both sides. The nicer ones, on the left, had soothing pluraled nature-names carved on hanging wooden signs, The Coves, The Glades, The Meadowlands. The cheaper condos, on the right, were smaller and closer to the road, and had names like roaring powerboats, Seaspray, Barracuda's, and Beachcomber III.

Jackie sneezed, a snippy poodle kind of sneeze, God-blessed herself, and said, "I bet it's on the left, Raymond. You better slow down."

Raymond Rios, the driver and young science teacher to the bright and gifted, didn't nod or really hear. He was thinking of the motels they had passed and the problem with the signs, No Vacancy. This message bothered him, he couldn't decide why. Then Jackie sneezed and it came to him, the motels said no vacancy because they were closed for the season (or off-season or not-season) and were, therefore, totally vacant, as vacant as they ever got, and so the sign, No Vacancy, was maximum-inaccurate, yet he understood exactly what it meant. This thought or chain of thoughts made him feel vacant and relaxed, done with a problem, a pleasant empty feeling driving by the beaches in the wind.

from Big If by Mark Costello

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Bailey was having trouble with his bagel. Warming to my subject, I kept on talking while cutting the bagel into smaller pieces, wiping a dob of cream from his collar, giving him a fresh napkin. "There's a pretense at democracy. Blather about consensus and empowering employees with opinion surveys and minority networks. But it's a sop. Bogus as costume jewelry. The decisions have already been made. Everything's hush-hush, on a need-to-know-only basis. Compartmentalized. Paper shredders, e-mail monitoring, taping phone conversations, dossiers. Misinformation, disinformation. Rewriting history. The apparatus of fascism. It's the kind of environment that can only foster extreme caution. Only breed base behavior. You know, if I had one word to describe corporate life, it would be 'craven.' Unhappy word."

Bailey's attention was elsewhere, on a terrier tied to a parking meter, a cheeky fellow with a grizzled coat. Dogs mesmerized Bailey. He sized them up the way they sized each other up. I plowed on. "Corporations are like fortressed city-states. Or occupied territories. Remember The Sorrow and the Pity? Nazi-occupied France, the Vichy government. Remember the way people rationalized their behavior, cheering Pétain at the beginning and then cheering de Gaulle at the end? In corporations, there are out-and-out collaborators. Opportunists. Born that way. But most of the employees are like the French in the forties. Fearful. Attentiste. Waiting to see what happens. Hunkering down. Turning a blind eye.

from Moral Hazard by Kate Jennings

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When the sashaying of gentlemen
Gives you grievance now and then
What's needed are some memories of planing lakes
Those planing lakes will surely calm you down

Nothing frightens me more
Than religion at my door
I never answer panic knocking
Falling down the stairs upon the law
What Law?

There's a law for everything
And for elephants that sing to feed
The cows that Agriculture won't allow

Hanky Panky Nohow
Hanky Panky Nohow
Hanky Panky Nohow

-- John Cale

© me