April 30, 2005

Book burning

We all know the quote about what gets burned after books...

Guardian interview with the Alabama polito leading the battle to ban "gay books" from Alabama. The reporter makes it clear where this will lead.

Further coverage of this. Classics might be excused!

Harry Potter books being burned.

Posted by duver001 at 11:54 AM

If biten by a tropical spider...

Take its picture!

Posted by duver001 at 11:14 AM

We come in peace

Sending vibrators to Iraq. "For humanitarian purposes." The purple ones, I hear, are especially popular.

Posted by duver001 at 11:00 AM

April 29, 2005

How do we know Putin is a good man?

"I looked the man in the eye," Bush said after their first summit, in June 2001. "I was able to get a sense of his soul a man deeply committed to his country."

Glad that our dear leader is psychic.

Posted by duver001 at 3:54 PM

Another aspect of all children left behind?

Pay to tattle!

Posted by duver001 at 1:13 PM

Another good ambassador choice

Bush's choice for the next US ambassador to Canada has only been here once before, three decades ago for a weekend trip to Niagara Falls. It does seem as though he is able to find the US's largest trading partner on a map, according to the story.

Posted by duver001 at 1:04 PM

Fascism, Godwin's Rule, and America

14 Characteristics of Fascist regimes.

Posted by duver001 at 12:22 PM

April 28, 2005

When in doubt, don't bribe the police officer

Or your ticket could turn into a raft of felonies.

Posted by duver001 at 1:04 PM

Fortunately, some are prospering in the new Iraq

Those in the death business anyway.

Posted by duver001 at 12:44 PM

An old Courtney Love piece on cheese (no, no, not on cheese, but on the RIAA)

From the days of napster, but still a good read. Many of the same points, sans the mps3 issues, were raised in the classic Maximum Rock & Roll 133 The Problem with Music, by Steve Albini.

Posted by duver001 at 12:21 PM

April 27, 2005

Layout folks having a good time at the paper

Posted by duver001 at 4:05 PM

April 26, 2005

School bus accident in Minneapolis

Hmong boy run over by his school bus in North Minneapolis. I'm guessing that there will be more school bus safety talks in the next few days or week.

Posted by duver001 at 8:30 AM

Thinking about the Dubya administration's decision to purge non-Republican-donating folks from the US delegation to the Inter-American Telephone Commission

"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." - Carl Sagan, 1987 CSICOP keynote address

See here about the IATA litmus test.

Posted by duver001 at 8:21 AM

April 25, 2005

Tom Waits...Legal Options

Tom Waits is suing over a sound-a-like being used in an Opel car ad. He's previously sued for similar reasons over Audi advertisements. Guess that distinctive voice sells cars?

Posted by duver001 at 6:51 PM

The Numbers Racket

Still going on... I had it associated with a distant time in the Northeast, back before state lotteries and legalized gambling in most places. An interesting article on the current version of the numbers game.

Posted by duver001 at 2:34 PM

Humvee armor in Iraq...still in the news

I think for less than $33k per vehicle I could have delivered some armor already, but I guess I have not donated enough money to the right causes. New York Times story on Marines without vehicle armor. Seems to lay at least twelve deaths in this unit at the hands of missing armor.

Posted by duver001 at 12:51 PM

April 23, 2005

New EU flag possibility?


From Ananova news, this Koolhaas design, based on the colors of the EU flags is being promoted as part of a new image. Yup, the focus groups agree, bar codes are the way to go.

Posted by duver001 at 1:31 PM

April 22, 2005

People with too much time on their hands

Counting the time "fuck" is said in the TV show "Deadwood."

Posted by duver001 at 1:11 PM

April 21, 2005

eBay Opium Addict

Ever typed "poppy seeds" into eBay's search feature? Wondered if there's yet another odd subculture out there? Well, look no further for opium-extracting 101.

After some thought, I'm not 100% sure the article is legit. Still, worth a read. And maybe we'll see new rules banning poppy seed cakes.

Posted by duver001 at 12:35 PM

Unpopped popcorn kernels now understood

Science marches on. Defects in the kernel shell prevent steam from building up and prevent proper pop. Manufacturers rush to increase popcorn yield...

Posted by duver001 at 12:08 PM

April 20, 2005

Of Obelisks

You've probably heard the news of the Ethiopian Axum Obelisk being returned to Axum from Italy. It had been looted by Mussolini during the Ethiopian conquest. Anyway, you can find a complete listing of the 30 obelisks and their histories (as far as they are known) here.

Posted by duver001 at 12:36 PM

April 19, 2005

New pope

He runs the current incarnation of the Inquisition, so I guess he wasn't expected to be elected pope-dude. Looks to be another step in making the Catholic Church irrelevent for the modern world. Less favorable comments can be found too... Darn, that's a scary picture!

So, Hitler Youth, Grand Inquisitor, papal infallibility doctrinaire, and now pope. It's truly an opportunity-filled world.

Posted by duver001 at 12:51 PM

Republican Jesus

Posted by duver001 at 12:37 PM

April 18, 2005

Police recommend against lying in the road

Even if you want to catch their attention. It could be dangerous.

Posted by duver001 at 2:11 PM

Calvi's murder

Four people finally being tried for this. It's the classic tale of the corrupt banker who controlled the Vatican's money. Plenty of fnords and illuminati. Do a search.

Posted by duver001 at 1:41 PM

April 16, 2005

Dubya & Condi defeat terrorism

Oh! I meant to say, defeat the publication of a report which shows that terrorism is skyrocketing as a result of the stupid US foreign policy. Is that close enough?

Posted by duver001 at 2:46 PM

April 14, 2005

Quote of the day

"During a nuclear incident, it is important to avoid radioactive material, if possible." -- Dept. of Homeland Security

Posted by duver001 at 3:05 PM

April 13, 2005

The Goal? To chill free speech?

The secret service visit and examine artwork critical of the president. Since the work was in the form of mock stamps, and features a gun to the Dubya head, I can picture two separate investigations...

Posted by duver001 at 2:56 PM

World toilet expo

In Shanghai in May. Junket time!

Posted by duver001 at 1:13 PM

How many Starbucks and alternate coffee shops near your home/business

The Delocator. I found 123 Starbucks within 5 miles of my old zip, 60622 in Chicago! And 21 around 55408 in Minneapolis where I live now. And here in Texas, in Palestine where I'm working this week? Zero Starbucks and zero other coffee shops (zip=75803). Not that it's an addiction...

Posted by duver001 at 12:20 PM

The news article titles included "hunting pussy in Wisconsin"

Discussion on Plastic. Or check out the news story on WI efforts to legalize the hunting of feral cats.

Posted by duver001 at 12:10 PM

April 12, 2005

Minneapolis, tech city?

Minneapolis is looking at city-wide Wi-Fi service.

And didn't Popular Science call Minneapolis the top tech city in America?

Posted by duver001 at 11:12 AM

Darwin award winner?

Albania's most wanted man. He's eluded capture for years, dodged the special police sent after him, and launched attacks on police stations. He died while fishing with dynamite. The fuse was evidently too short. Ooops!

Posted by duver001 at 8:55 AM

April 11, 2005

Church and State

As our protections against the religious tyranny fades, at least we need to remember the "founding fathers" were hardly Christians.

* I have examined all the known superstitions of the world, and I do not find in our particular superstition of Christianity one redeeming feature. They are all alike founded on fables and mythology. Millions of innocent men, women and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined and imprisoned. What has been the effect of this coercion? To make one half the world fools and the other half hypocrites; to support roguery and error all over the earth. (Thomas Jefferson)

* The Government of the United States is not in any sense founded on the Christian religion.

The doctrine of the divinity of Jesus is made a convenient cover for absurdity. (John Adams)

* I do not believe in the creed professed by the Jewish church, by the Roman church, by the Greek church, by the Turkish church, by the Protestant church, nor by any church that I know of... Each of those churches accuse the other of unbelief; and for my own part, I disbelieve them all. (Thomas Paine)

* What influence in fact have Christian ecclesiastical establishments had on civil society? In many instances they have been upholding the thrones of political tyranny. In no instance have they been seen as the guardians of the liberties of the people. Rulers who wished to subvert the public liberty have found in the clergy convenient auxiliaries. A just government, instituted to secure and perpetuate liberty, does not need the clergy.

Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprize. (James Madison)

Posted by duver001 at 6:43 PM

The UAE's robots...

At least they're being better about child labor.

Posted by duver001 at 6:42 PM

April 10, 2005

Great Wolf Lodge in Wisconsin Dells

The little ones got a kick out of the indoor water park and the four story indoor play area. Fun stuff for six year olds.

Posted by duver001 at 7:24 PM

April 7, 2005

They take their football seriously in Texas

I thought the scariest bit was the woman who claimed that the athletics department had problems and the situation could get worse. Hey, it's football. That's a game. People getting shot is less of a game.

Posted by duver001 at 9:29 PM

Daylight savings time

Okay, we all know that the whole DST thing is fundamentally silly, and the new proposed Congressional law (extending DST by two months) is even sillier, but did you know that DST has saved lives from terrorist attacks (lots of other weirdnesses in there too)?

Posted by duver001 at 4:00 PM

Two NYT articles on grim situations

The last surviving single, older male residents upstairs from a trendy NYC bar and gallery. Watching their old neighborhood turn into Yuppiedom.

Honoring the dead pope, while ignoring the deaths in Darfur? Genocide. I could have sworn that the rallying cry was never again. Cambodia? East Timor? Bosnia? Rwanda? Sudan?

Posted by duver001 at 12:42 PM

April 6, 2005

Deliveryman stuck in elevator for three days

No one noticed his cries for help in the broken elevator. Though his employer was concerned and there was a missing person search on for him.

Immigration status mentioned here. (Added 4/7/2005)

Posted by duver001 at 1:29 PM

April 5, 2005

Twin b-days

A great party over the weekend for friends, and a quiet dinner today for family. The kids were spoiled with all of their gifts though! In-line skates, x-country skis, books, movies, crafts, clothes, and silly stuff. Then off to Wisconsin Dells for a couple of days of indoor waterparking.

Posted by duver001 at 1:46 PM

April 4, 2005

Remember "toothing?"

Supposedly a craze sweeping England, hook-ups via active bluetooth devices. You'd walk around and your cell/PDA would connect to others. Then you'd decide to have anonymous (well, except for the bluetooth ID codes) sex with them. You may have bought a bluetooth device just to get in on the action as reported in Wired, Reuters, or the BBC. Well, it was a hoax.

On the other hand, flying to Chile last month, my powerbook found two phones and another laptop open via bluetooth during the flight. I was in 1st class though...

Posted by duver001 at 7:20 PM

Top 100 April Fool's Day Hoaxes

Sure it's a little late, but it is pretty funny. From the Museum of Hoaxes, man, some people have too much time on their hands. The spaghetti harvest hoax is one of the ones I had heard about as a kid. Truly classic.

Posted by duver001 at 12:50 PM

It took a tough man...

...to raise a tender chicken. Frank Perdue, Poultry Magnate, dead at age 84. Why am I doing obits on this blog? Oh well, at least I'm not talking about the JP2.

Posted by duver001 at 12:48 PM

April 3, 2005

April 1, 2005

Beware of counterfeit Mini Coopers!

See here if you can spot the counterfeits!

Posted by duver001 at 3:38 PM

The Beeb requests an interview with Bob Marley

He is still dead though. As far as I know...

Posted by duver001 at 12:25 PM

Zimbabwe's ongoing trauma

You can follow the rigged election on the BBC. Or just assume that Mugabe is going to steal the election, as has been reported food aid is only being distributed to those who hold cards for his party. Amazing how far this country has fallen in the past few years. Hyperinflation, murders of dissidents, media crackdowns, stolen foreign aid monies, loss of democracy... It's been a painful process to watch from a distance (obviously has to be infinitely worse in the flesh) after traveling there and truly enjoying the land and the people. What is it with Africa? I know Paul Theroux tried to answer that, and maybe Bill Clinton too with his big African trip, but I don't think I understand. Why the war in the Congo? Why the never ending corruption?

Posted by duver001 at 11:23 AM

One of Iraq's tourist destinations

My little twin girls had been looking at a travel book recently and they were fascinated with the spiral minaret in Samarra. They wanted to travel there and climb up it (once the war was over). However, it looks as though it's been badly damaged in recent fighting after having survived quite a bit in the past.

Posted by duver001 at 11:14 AM