"If you understood everything I said, you'd be me" - Miles Davis
"There is much pleasure to be gained from useless knowledge." - Bertrand Russell
"Take away the right to say fuck and you take away the right to say fuck the government." - Lenny Bruce
"Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!" - Homer Simpson

Utility Fog Banner

Banana Republican
"The United States is now the third most unequal industrialized society after Russia and Mexico. This is not a club we want to be part of. Russia is a recovering kleptocracy, with a post-Soviet oligarchy enriched by looting. And Mexico, despite joining the rich-nations club of the Organization for Economic and Community Development, has some of the most glaring poverty in the hemisphere.

In 2004, after three years of economic recovery, the U.S. Census reports that poverty continues to grow, while the real median income for full-time workers has declined. Since 2001, when the economy hit bottom, the ranks of our nation's poor have grown by 4 million, and the number of people without health insurance has swelled by 4.6 million to over 45 million.

Income inequality is now near all-time highs, with over 50 percent of 2004 income going to the top fifth of households, and the biggest gains going to the top 5 percent and 1 percent of households. The average CEO now takes home a paycheck 431 times that of their average worker."
Billionaires R Us
Via Craig's BookNotes

Dude, I've Got It Covered
I got a big charge out of the concern the Circuit City clerk showed about me carrying my new stereo receiver out of the store. He warned me TWICE that one end was heavier than the other. I just looked at him like he was advising me to continue breathing. I think I delivered something like 2000 pounds of books that day-unless Sony is making their stuff out of solid depleted uranium I think I can handle it. They must get a lot of clumsy customers.

Monetize


My blog is worth $1,129.08.
How much is your blog worth?

Via Boing Boing

I'm Going To Have To Spend Some Money
"Thanks to badly needed remastering, the eight-disc Brick box-including all the studio albums, plus a handful of bonus tracks, video footage, and surround-sound mixes-shines rich expository light on arguably the greatest four-record run in rock history. Starting with 77 and continuing through More Songs About Buildings And Food, Fear Of Music, and Remain In Light, Talking Heads exploded with ideas that could snap with a tiny turn of phrase or a big rethink of what could be done with rhythm and sound. It was less a run than a series of lurches, each album falling upward with all the controlled chaos of a Buster Keaton bit. In its new remastered form, 77 sounds like a wholly different album: The guitars ring with mystery and muscle that at least suggest their grounding in punk, and songs spin out newly crisp marimba and piano figures that would gain higher status in time. Buildings And Food sounds even better. The dense grooves of producer Brian Eno cover more ground with improved depth of field; jammy excursions laced into Tourettic songs like "Found A Job" and "Stay Hungry" still stand as some of Eno's best work. Eno famously stayed on through the murkier, moodier Fear Of Music and Remain In Light, which imagines some anxious idea of African funk for the coming age of Max Headroom."
Talking Heads: Brick


Blogging Software

Reviewed by The Guardian:
Blosxom
20Six
b2/Wordpress
Blogger
iBlog
LiveJournal
Movable Type
Radio Userland
Typepad

Lost/Dharma Logo On Plane
Convincing photographic case for No Dharma Logo On Oceanic Flight 815


Lost
Interesting collection of pictures of the mural in station 3, along with some theories about images contained within.
Via Black Rock


"Jen who you don't know" reports in a comment that Lost's producers have confirmed that it was the DeGroots on the boat.

Dark And Stormy

The best in bad SF writing:
"`Gosseyn's intestinal fortitude strove to climb into his throat, and settled into position again only reluctantly ...' -- A.E.van Vogt, The World of Null-A

`He put the stomach back and began to feel around for the small intestine ... That's when something bit him.' -- Simon Ian Childer, Worm

`I had to fight with myself every time circumstances forced me to put it down.' -- P. Straub of R. Campbell's Incarnate

`Speak! You've got a civil tongue in your head! I know you have, because I sewed it there myself.' -- Kenneth Langtry, screenplay for I Was a Teenage Frankenstein (1957)

`... a small piece of an asteroid that had been floating around in the Big Empty for a length of time that had more zeroes in it than even Carl Sagan could imagine.' -- Simon Hawke, The Reluctant Sorcerer

`The sea was lit by a diffused golden haze that lent it a queer other-worldly aspect but which was very pleasant to the blackened, sun-seared eyes of those who had been so close to the fires of the Solar star.' -- Karl Mannheim, When the Earth Died

`The green fur made it look like a Terran gorilla more than anything.' -- Michael Kring, The Space Mavericks

`Most of the buildings around us were like towering boxes, almost phallic in their heights.' -- Michael Kring, ibid

`The flight of F-104's moved up to the apron. Nasty silver birds with wings like sawn-off shotguns.' -- Peter Heath, The Mind Brothers"
Thog's Masterclass
Via MonkeyFilter

Counterproductive Much?
"A Dutch court blocked the extradition to the United States on Wednesday of a man with Dutch and Egyptian nationality suspected of links to al Qaeda, citing insufficient guarantees over the suspect's basic rights."
Dutch court blocks Egyptian's extradition to US


Lost/Ep 205-"...And Found"

Noticed:
*Jack had his wedding ring duplicated. I'm just so into the whole weird twin thing. If Alvar Hanso is a Nazi, don't forget that Dr. Mengele experimented on twins.
*According to the Tailers, the Others come from inland.
*Mister Eko-Mister Echo. There have been suggestions that Mr. Eko came to the island via the heroin plane. This plane's radio echoed Boone's distress call. And echoes are a form of duplication. Spoooooky
*According to Mr. Eko, the Others don't leave tracks. According to Locke, Desmond doesn't leave tracks. All very strange, because if you move through the jungle you leave tracks, even if you're barefoot.


Assumption:
*Assume that the Others are inherently hostile. It seems like that they've killed 18 or so of the Tailers. But they haven't staked out the Dharma station the Tailers are camped out in. Ergo, the Others do not know about the station. So the Others aren't from a devolved Dharma Initiative.
Unless:
1: The writers screwed up
2: There are more than one group of Others.
3: Something Else.

What did they do with that dead polar bear? That would have been a lot of stink and flies.

Blasphemy!
"The hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church has published a teaching document instructing the faithful that some parts of the Bible are not actually true.

The Catholic bishops of England, Wales and Scotland are warning their five million worshippers, as well as any others drawn to the study of scripture, that they should not expect "total accuracy" from the Bible.

"We should not expect to find in Scripture full scientific accuracy or complete historical precision," they say in The Gift of Scripture."
I for one am shocked, just shocked.

Catholic Church no longer swears by truth of the Bible
Via MonkeyFilter

NOLA/Katrina

New Orleanians often are slow to get to the point: in my youth it was not unusual for someone to call my mother, keep her on the phone for 20 minutes, hang up, then call back because she never got around to what the call was about in the first place. The point is never really the point. Conversation in New Orleans is not a tool but a pastime. New Orleans stories are given perhaps too much room to breathe; they go on and on so entertainingly that only later do you realize that there were things in them that made no sense.

At some moment, I realized that Haywood Hillyer's story made no sense. Why, really, had he stayed? The first time I asked him, he replied: "These other guys had children, so they felt it wasn't worth the risk. I didn't have children." This may have been true as far as it went, but it didn't really answer the question: childlessness is not a reason to risk your life. Just three months earlier, he married a lovely young woman who was reason enough to live. He wasn't by nature defiant, or belligerent. He was just different, in some hard-to-see but meaningful way.

The fourth time (in four days) that I put the same question to him - Yeah, but why did you stay? - Haywood stood and, with the air of a man ready to make his final statement, said: "O.K., I'll tell you why I stayed. But this it totally off the record."

"Fine, it's off the record."

"Totally off the record."

"O.K., totally off the record."

"There were these feral kittens under my house," he began, and off he went, explaining how these little kittens had come to depend upon him, how three of them now live with him but two still refuse to let him near them, even though he feeds them. There's a long story that he swore was interesting about how these cats got under his house in the first place, but the point was this: If he left, there would be no one in New Orleans to feed the cats.

Haywood Hillyer stayed and, for all anyone knew then, risked being skinned alive or worse to feed cats. And the cats didn't even like him.

Two days later, as he was pulling out of town, I explained to Haywood that he just had to let me put his story on the record. "It'll make me look like a wuss," he said. I convinced him that in view of the fact that his bravery exceeded that of the entire Police Department and possibly the Armed Forces of the United States, the last thing he would look like is a wuss.

"All right," he finally said, "but then you got to get the story exactly straight. There was one other reason I stayed. It wasn't as important as the cats. But it wouldn't be a true story unless you mentioned the other reason."

"What's the other reason?"

"The traffic."

"What?"

"It took my wife 12 hours to drive from New Orleans to Jackson on Sunday," he said. "She left Sunday at 1 p.m. and arrived in Jackson at 1 a.m."

"So?"

"That's usually a two-and-a-half-hour drive."

"Right. So what?"

"You don't understand: I hate traffic."
Great article about life in New Orleans, pre- and post-Katrina: Wading Toward Home
Via mike.whybark.com

Zombie Woof
Utility Fog Blog is proud to present Osedax mucofloris, aka the "bone-eating snot-flower", a worm that lives on dead whale bones.

Oops
I discovered today that my recent addition of subdirectories to my main blog-entry directory broke the comments system. But now I can report that everything should be fixed-at least I haven't found any new problems. I won't bore you with the arcane technical details, but it was a pretty simple fix.

P.S. Thanks Walt!

Groin-Grabbingly Transcendent

29 Double-Bacon Geniusburger
30 Drunkening
31 Dumbening
32 Embiggen
33 Fishbulb
34 Fit
35 Flupid Bloroplope
36 Flunjers, Capdabblers, Smendlers
37 Frinkahedron
38 Frogurt
39 Führerific
40 Funzo
41 Gamblor
42 Garbagewater
43 Glayvin
44 Groin-Grabbingly Transcendent
45 Hoaxiscope
46 HoJu
47 Homersexual
48 Hoyvin-Mavin
49 I, for one, welcome our new (insert word) overlords
Made-up words in The Simpsons
Via Boing Boing

Lost/Newsflash
"We're talking about doing a Saturday-morning spinoff, though, called Locke and the Monster. [It would be] an animated show, and Locke rides around on the monster's shoulders, and they solve crimes and that sort of stuff."
...and they fight crime

Sahara BoomDeeHay

I rented Sahara and I'm happy to report that it's a fun action flick. But there was one bit that bugged me. At one point our heroes are lost in the desert and come upon a crashed light plane. Hero #1 bets that there is a tool kit in the wreck. The next scene starts with a moving shot across the sand showing us the discarded tools and then the land-yacht the plane has been converted into "sailing" off into the distance. What bothered me was the left-behind tools. Our heroes are very smart, capable fellows, and I couldn't believe they would just abandon perfectly good tools they might easily need later.

Lost/The Master Plan

From a deleted blog-post by Lost Supervising Producer Javier Grillo-Marxuach:
"this is what i know to be true...

- we know what the island is.

- we know the function of the monster.

- we know who built the hatch and why.

- we know who the others are and how they wound up on the island.

- we know the back-stories of our characters and the past transgressions that they will be working out in the crucible of the island.

- we knew how the first season would end well in advance and already know how the second will end as well.

- we know that we can't hinge the endings of the third and fourth seasons on any particular revelations yet because we don't know how long the series will last and have to time our disclosure of our secrets accordingly.

- we know why oceanic 815 crash landed on the island. "
And the ass-kicker for any Lost puzzle freak:
"- we know the show will end when we reveal the true makeup of the island and why our characters landed there."
Hmm. One way they could keep these two details secret is that no one else on the Island knows it's true makeup either AND that the "true makeup" was involved in bringing our heroes to the island. Or it's something else.
Lost and found

Babysitting

I learned 2 things from overseeing my 3-year-old niece for a couple of hours yesterday:
1: Sometimes the best toy is just your basic push-broom. You give a little kid who occasionally seems to be channelling John Belushi, circa Animal House, a big heavy stick and room to swing it around and you're talking big fun.

2: My impression of a cranky Toshio Mifune is endlessly amusing.


I Need That Job
"On that show (The Pretender, and later on Charmed, I was kind of the creepy guy.

Creepy guy?

More so on Charmed -- I'd be sitting in my office and somebody would knock on the door and say, "we need some really creepy thing" and I'd say, "sides of beef and they're bleeding milk." They'd say, "that's great!" and then they'd leave. I'd sit in my office for another couple of hours and somebody would ask, "what's a really cool way for somebody to die?" "The monster opens its mouth and a high-pitched sound comes out and the guy's organs liquefy." "That's great!" The thing is -- they'd always close the door when they'd leave. "
Why am not surprised to find that Grillo-Marxuach (Supervising Producer for Lost) worked on 2 of my favorite shows, The Pretender and Boomtown? I'm giving him a pass for Charmed.
Javier Grillo-Marxuach: The Creepy Guy

Cool
1000 Things Made Of Bamboo
Back in college I used bamboo to make a kickass....ah, nevermind.
Via Boing Boing

Lost / Ep204-"Everybody Hates Hurley"

I've got to say, this episode was a big letdown after the massive clue-download of last week show. I like Hurley as much as the next Lost fan, but all I learned was that his mother has a mouth on her and Hugo doesn't like change or responsiblity.

Interesting Facts:
*New Dharma Logo, with a what looks like a cross instead of a swan.
*Desmond doesn't leave tracks.
*There was only enough food in Station 3 to last 3 months assuming 1 person eating 3 meals a day.
*The same actor who played Hurley's boss at Clucky's also played Locke's boss at the cardboard company. Both characters are named Randy

Questions:
*Who dug the pit the Tailers put the raft trio in, and why? That was a pretty big hole, so it represented a lot of effort, especially if you add in the bamboo cover. If the Tailers are being hunted by the Others why would they go to all that trouble? It must have been dug before the raft trio washed ashore. Maybe the Others dug it, but then why would the Tailers be hanging around it?

*Why was all the food in Station 3 specially marked with the Dharma/Swan logo? Why not just use regular food?

Irks, I got mad Irks
*This episode takes place 36 hours after the previous one. But in all that time nobody thinks to make up a cover story for where they've been. And Hurley cannot lie worth a damn. It's a good thing his game is backgammon, not poker.

*Now Charlie wants to know where everybody was and what was down the hatch. Nobody gave a damn a day ago.

*It's been noted by other people on the web, but now the massive incuriosity of the survivors is starting to bug me. Granted, Jack and Sayid try to open the sealed magnetic door, but that is the only investigating we see in this episode. If I had been in Station 3 I would have been all over it with the proverbial fine-tooth comb. And nobody talks to any one else in an effort to figure out what the hell is happening. Kate and Jack saw the "black smoke" together but they never discuss it. Nobody wonders where the polar bears came from. It it were me I would be constantly going on and on with variations of "What do you think is going on?". It's enough to make me seriously wonder about the possibility of mind control.

Lost/Tidbits
Interesting Stuff via MSNBC: An ocean of new mysteries on "Lost":

*Insanely complete set of maps and screenshots of Station 3/The Swan
*On the orientation film, Dr. Marvin Candle's left arm never moves
*"Hanso" is Sanskrit for "Swan" and "Alvar" means "He who Masters the World Through the Worship of God".
Link: Who is Alvar Hanso

Lohengrin, the "Swan Knight". Oh yea, he's also a Grail Knight and he has a twin. I have no idea if this means anything.
Semi-Spoilery stuff from TV Guide/Spoilerfix/Lost-Media.com.
Clears up the "2 Helens" question and raises serious doubts about when Flight 815 crashed. I'm working on the assumption that anything the writers/producers reveal in interviews is gospel. The show is confusing enough, why would they have to resort to lying?
Under their white fur, the skin of the polar bear is black

Lost/Theories
JacobAtWork pointed out another bit of evidence for my theory that Jack and Desmond are connected or related somehow. In Ep #201 Desmond says to Jack "I was almost a doctor once.". And I thought of another possible piece of evidence. In the stadium, not only are Jack and Desmond doing exactly the same thing (running the steps), but you could say that they were running in parallel.
I don't know what the link is, whether they're clones, twins, brothers, or what. But with the all the spooky connections between the Flight 815 survivors, twins on the Other's boat, the Hanso Foundation's interest in "Juxtopositional Eugenics", and the almost universally accepted notion that the all or most of the survivors were brought to the island by someone or something for some purpose I think my theory that Jack and Desmond are versions of each other looks very plausible.

Lost
There's a new "script-page"/easter egg hidden in www.oceanicflight815.com, an official ABC/Disney/Lost site. As before, click on the barcode and enter "theislandiswaiting". This one has Michael and Jin loading guns in a room, preparing to defend themselves against zombies. Now the last "script page" had a terrified Jack running from the hatch only to be tackled by his doppleganger. This clearly didn't happen, so we can't believe anything the "scripts" say.
Or can we? Consider:

*Someone did run scared from the hatch, pursued and finally caught by Jack: Desmond
*Desmond called Jack "brother"
*When we first saw Desmond, he and Jack were doing exactly the same thing, running stadium steps.
*Desmond and Jack's age, hair color, facial shape, and build are very similar.
*The picture on the desk in the hatch shows a younger Desmond with a blond woman who resembles *Jack's wife Sarah.
*Desmond also called Locke "brother". Now it looks like Jack and Locke have taken responsibility for entering the numbers, which was Desmond's job. I wonder if Jack knows the answer to the snowman riddle?


Hanso Foundation Projects:

  Life-Extension Project

  Foundation Electromagnetic Research Initiative

  Quest for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence

  Mathematical Forecasting Initiative

  Cryogenics Development Imperative

  Juxtapositional Eugenics Development Institute

  Accelerated Remote Viewing Training Facility

There is enough high-tech hoodoo here to drive a show for years. God only knows what "Juxtapositional Eugenics" is.

Lost
comparison of degroots and others on lost

The DeGroots may have been on the boat that kidnapped Walt. I can certainly buy into the Dharma Initiative devolving into the "Others". Now to explain why they lost control over Station 3 and are cut off from the outside world. I think I got this off the Alt.Tv.Lost newsgroup. I know there are at least 2 versions of this graphic floating around.

I wonder if other stations have gone rogue or rebelled. There's no reason the bad guys have to be a cohesive group.

Asymmetric
Global Guerrillas: Networked tribes, infrastructure disruption, and the emerging bazaar of violence. An open notebook on the first epochal war of the 21st Century.
Via Kung Fu Monkey

Hammer Heading To Slammer?
"Thus began what historians will regard as the single most corrupt decade in the long and colorful history of the House of Representatives. Come on, you say. How about all those years when congressmen accepted cash in the House chamber and then staggered onto the floor drunk? Yes, special interests have bought off members of Congress at least since Daniel Webster took his seat while on the payroll of a bank. And yes, Congress over the years has seen dozens of sex scandals and dozens of members brought low by financial improprieties. But never before has the leadership of the House been hijacked by a small band of extremists bent on building a ruthless shakedown machine, lining the pockets of their richest constituents and rolling back popular protections for ordinary people. These folks borrow like banana republics and spend like Tip O'Neill on speed.

I have no idea if DeLay has technically broken the law. What interests me is how this moderate, evenly divided nation came to be ruled on at least one side of Capitol Hill by a zealot. This is a man who calls the Environmental Protection Agency "the Gestapo of government" and favors repealing the Clean Air Act because "it's never been proven that air toxins are hazardous to people"; who insists repeatedly that judges on the other side of issues "need to be intimidated" and rejects the idea of a separation of church and state; who claims there are no parents trying to raise families on the minimum wage-that "fortunately, such families do not exist" (at least Newt Gingrich was intrigued by the challenges of poverty); who once said: "A woman can't take care of the family. It takes a man to provide structure." I could go on all day. Congress has always had its share of extremists. But the DeLay era is the first time the fringe has ever been in charge."
Tom DeLay's House of Shame
Via Ghost in the Machine

Lost
Two thoughts on the whole Lost phenomenon:

1: Watching the show embodies the Lost theme of Faith vs Science. We have faith that the writers will provide a rational explanation for all the mysterious events.

2: After seeing promos for Season 2/Episode 4 (longer than the ones shown at the end of S2/E3) and watching an Alias re-run it occured to me that the producers/writers might actually answer most if not all of the questions soon. Then they could use smaller scale dramatic devices (mind control, doubles/evil twins/impersonation, moral choices, conflict w/ the "others", etc) to maintain our interest.

Lost
I'm putting my observations/nitpicks/etc. on Season 2/ Episode 3, "Orientation" in the comments to avoid spoilage.

Lost
I'm watching Season 2, Episode 3 and I see the film about the "Dharma Initiative". So I do a Google search for it and the Google Ad/Sponsored Link that pops up is for the "Lost" season 1 DVD from Amazon. Just "dharma" doesn't produce any ads at all.

Ghostrider
ghostrider robot motorcycle
Any bunch of geniuses can build a robot car. It takes real casabas to make a robot motorcycle.
Ghostrider Robot
Via we make money not art

You're Doing A Great Job
"The objective of this blog is to find an important government job occupied by a person with no apparent qualifications other than strong personal, political, or business ties to a member of the administration.
...
Candidate: Vice-Chairman of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting

Credentials: charter member and a chairman of GOPAC, the Republican fundraising group used by Newt Gingrich to engineer the GOP takeover of the House in 1994. Interior decorator by training."

Find The Brownie
Via linkfilter.net

Hoverboy Ahoy!



HOVERBOY COMICS #3 (1957)
"HOVERBOY VERSUS THE DOCTOR DEATH"

Considered one of the most rare HOVERBOY comics,
HOVERBOY COMICS #3 went directly from the printers
to the incinerators. The cover alone contains a violation
of just about every CCA restriction possible! This issue
sees HOVERBOY fighting "The Doctor Death", his zombie
minions, and even an knife wielding Asian-amputee-midget!


I love the zombie minion smoking a cigarette. This site must be seen to be believed.
Hoverboy
Via MonkeyFilter

Flipper's Got A Gun
Armed dolphins, trained by the US military to shoot terrorists and pinpoint spies underwater, may be missing in the Gulf of Mexico.
Via Monkeyfilter

It's All About Nuance
Perfume Notes, an interesting blog about a subject I know nothing about.
Via More To Life Than Kitchens

And apropos of nothing, if scooters (the Vespa kind) are street-legal why aren't atv quads? Is it because they flip over too easily? They can't be any worse than those 3-wheeled "interceptors" used by parking enforcement.

Dude, Stick To Decaf
crackles the squirrel
Via defective yeti

Ring Of Fire
I'm lifting this wholesale from Daily Kos because I'm over-caffeinated, I'm cranky, and I love a good rant:
"At Blogs For Bush, which bills itself as the Whorehouse... er, "White House" of the Blogosphere, the ever effervescent Mark Noonan writes about the DeLay indictment:
As our Sister Toldjah noted earlier, the "indictment" of Tom Delay is entirely bogus - from what I've read, Tom Delay didn't know about the perfectly legal transaction he is accused of conspiring to make. We have now left entirely the field of normal political conflict and entered a twilight world where fantasy is presented as fact and the only standard of conduct is "will it work?". This is not the actions of a political Party engaged in seeking a majority - it is the action of a Party determined to destroy its opponents entirely and sieze all power for itself...it is, in short, the stuff from which civil wars are made...

I really do urge our Democrats to step back from the edge - you are sitting in a lake of gasoline and you are playing with fire. We on our side will only put up with so much before we start to pay back with usury what we have received. If you can't defeat Tom Delay in the electoral field, then you will simply have to accept him as Majority Leader of the United States House of Representatives - and you'd better start accepting political reality before things get really bad.
Mark... may I call you Mark? I feel when someone has shown me the insides of their own rectum, we're pretty much on a first name basis... I have some words for you.

Whitewater. Rush Limbaugh. "Drug Dealer" Bill Clinton. Swift Boats.

Vince Fucking Foster.

Playing with fire, you say? Because the indictments ringing Tom DeLay finally reached up that one, final step from his ring of closest advisers to DeLay himself? Because the SEC has launched a formal investigation into the same behaviors by Bill Frist that put Martha Stewart recently in prison? Because one of the single most visible, highest profile Republican money men has been indicted for fraud, is being investigated for client shakedowns, and has his close business associates being investigated for a mob-connected murder?

What utter cowardice. What pathetic anti-American pedantry. What laughable protestation. The crimes of campaign money laundering, of fraud, of conspiracy, the violation of the laws of the nation, to be answered with stern visions of potential gunfire if Democrats have the audacity to pursue it.

This is the world of the Republican Party, split open like a rotting pumpkin. Crime after crime after crime being investigated, all revolving around the Republican money machine. Every seed connected by the strands of money they share between them. Barely-laundered campaign money passed in the palm of every flabby handshake. Every player in boldface, underlined print in the Rolodex of every other.

And still, this same bottom-tier world of flag-waving supporters still obsessed over an extramarital sex act, but offended to the point of sad, blustering threats at the notion that crimes by gilded and worshipped Republicans are really still crimes.

Your party has set aflame the entire political landscape, and now, once burned, you warn sternly from the branches of a burnt-out tree about "playing with fire". You used the ashes of one of the great liberal cities of America, New York City, as war paint for your own sick, racist dreams. You shudder at a burning flag, yet are willing to snip-and-cut basic tenets of the Constitution as needed or convenient.

And now, you're outraged, not by any of the rest of it, not by anything that has come before, but because a few prominent Republican faces have -- shock of shocks -- been indicted in probes that have spanned years of investigation, and interrogation, and deposition. That, you say, represents the underpinnings of a civil war.

You poor, hollow, blood-painted clowns. Cheering the trials and failures of your country with the same pennants and giant foam hands that you wave at your favorite sports teams. Willing to accept the most outrageous of lies, if they are spoken from your favorite talking heads, and soothe your own notions of America for you, and only for you.

And as for the audacity of Democrats speaking up during this process... the redfaced, flatulent fury with which you declare Republicans off-limits to that which you so gleefully hurl yourself...

Welcome to the world of the politics of personal destruction, you tubthumping, chin-jutting, Bush humping gits. Welcome to the nasty and partisan world that Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Michelle Malkin, Hugh Hewitt, Grover Norquist, Newt Gingrich, Tom DeLay, and a legion of insignificant lowest-rung toadies like yourselves nurtured into fruition daily with eager, grubby hands, and now look upon with dull-faced faux horror.

I know you hate me, and anyone else who dares disturb the thin strands of alternate reality in which George W. Bush is an intellectual giant, Saddam really was responsible for 9/11, the economy is getting better by the minute, and we capture the most very important members of al Qaeda on a weekly basis.

But here's some advice. You'd better start hating me more. This is the world you forged and, unfortunately for you, I'm beginning to take a fancy for it. Welcome to the politics of your own party, finally sprouting from the ground on which you planted the seeds and shat upon them.

Step back from the edge? You poor boy, asleep in the back of the car the whole trip, finally waking up and wondering where you're at.

Swift boats. Aluminum tubes. Niger uranium. "Mushroom clouds". Whitewater.

Vince Fucking Foster.

You can't even see the edge from here. You left it behind a hundred miles back.

So don't give me chest-thumping crap about civil wars, if your politicians are indicted. Don't give me visions of a lake of fire, if all those who find you loathsome refuse to suck at your teats of scientific ignorance in the name of religion, racism in the name of freedom, and corruption in the name of the New World Order.

Get used to the world you have created, and the stench your worshipped heroes have unleashed."


Everything You Know Is Wrong
"Religious belief can cause damage to a society, contributing towards high murder rates, abortion, sexual promiscuity and suicide, according to research published today.

According to the study, belief in and worship of God are not only unnecessary for a healthy society but may actually contribute to social problems.

The study counters the view of believers that religion is necessary to provide the moral and ethical foundations of a healthy society.

It compares the social peformance of relatively secular countries, such as Britain, with the US, where the majority believes in a creator rather than the theory of evolution. Many conservative evangelicals in the US consider Darwinism to be a social evil, believing that it inspires atheism and amorality.

Many liberal Christians and believers of other faiths hold that religious belief is socially beneficial, believing that it helps to lower rates of violent crime, murder, suicide, sexual promiscuity and abortion. The benefits of religious belief to a society have been described as its ?spiritual capital?. But the study claims that the devotion of many in the US may actually contribute to its ills.

The paper, published in the Journal of Religion and Society, a US academic journal, reports: ?Many Americans agree that their churchgoing nation is an exceptional, God-blessed, shining city on the hill that stands as an impressive example for an increasingly sceptical world.

?In general, higher rates of belief in and worship of a creator correlate with higher rates of homicide, juvenile and early adult mortality, STD infection rates, teen pregnancy and abortion in the prosperous democracies.

?The United States is almost always the most dysfunctional of the developing democracies, sometimes spectacularly so.? "
Societies worse off 'when they have God on their side'
Via unfutz

I like Oregon
"The Oregon Supreme Court struck down as unconstitutional yesterday a state law against conducting live sex shows and a local ordinance regulating conduct of nude dancers.

Both restrictions violate the Oregon Constitution's guarantees of free speech and free expression, the court said in a pair of 5-1 decisions."
Oregon Supreme Court overturns laws on sex shows, dancers

Meanwhile, in Seattle:
"Tough new restrictions on Seattle strip clubs were approved by a City Council panel yesterday, including a "four-foot rule" to separate dancers from patrons.
...
Jack Burns, an attorney for Déjà Vu in downtown Seattle, said the city had produced no evidence that the clubs were linked to crimes such as prostitution or illicit drug use.

Of 190 arrests inside clubs in recent years, none involved prostitution or drug dealing, Burns noted.

Instead, the charges were virtually all related to violations of the current law governing conduct of dancers. That law prohibits sexual contact with patrons, but does not force dancers to keep a certain distance away."
Council panel OKs rules for strip clubs

Lost

lost numbers as long/lat
"Lost" numbers as Long/Lat


Lost Names

"Every single name on the show has purpose and meaning"
Sayid Jarrah
Sa'id: Arabic for 'happy' or 'lucky'
Jarrah: 1: The Australian Jarrah tree: When fresh, Jarrah is quite workable but when seasoned it becomes so hard that conventional wood-working tools are useless.
2: General Al-Djarrah ibn Abdullah (700 A.D.): In 730 a Khazar army led by Barjik invaded northeastern Persia. At the Battle of Marj Ardebil in 730 al-Djarrah was defeated and killed by the Khazars, who thereafter captured the city of Ardebil. Al-Djarrah's head was mounted on Barjik's throne, a tactical error which enraged the Arabs at the subsequent Battle of Mosul (731) and contributed to their victory there, and Barjik's death.


Claire Littleton
Clare: Medieval name derived from Latin clarus "clear, bright, famous".
Littleton: My guess, 'little town'

Dr. Jack Sheppard
Jack: Derived from Jackin (earlier Jankin), a medieval pet form of John
John: English form of Johannes, which was the Latin form of the Greek name Ioannes, itself derived from the Hebrew name Yochanan meaning "YAHWEH is gracious".
Sheppard: One who tends a flock

Hugo "Hurley" Reyes
Hugo: Latinized form of Hugh.
Hugh: From Germanic hug, meaning "heart, mind, or spirit".
Reyes: From the Old French "rey," meaning king, Reyes was often bestowed as a nickname for a man who carried himself in a regal, or kingly, fashion. Alternative meanings include "one who plays the part of a king in a pageant" or "someone who works in the king's house."
Shannon Rutherford
Shannon: Gaelic: old or wise river
Rutherford: Derived from the Welsh Ruthr, rushing, swift, and fford, a ford or way.


Boone Carlisle
Boon: A benefit bestowed, especially one bestowed in response to a request.
Carlisle: The curse of Carlisle was first invoked by Archbishop Dunbar of Glasgow in 1525 against cross-border families, known as the Border Reivers, who lived by stealing cattle, rape and pillage. For the millennium celebrations, the local council commissioned a 14-tonne granite artwork inscribed with all 1,069 words of the curse.

James "Sawyer" Ford
James: English form of the Late Latin Jacomus which was derived from Iakobos, the New Testament Greek form of Ya'aqov (Jacob)
Jacob: From the Latin Jacobus, which was from the Greek Iakobos, which was from the Hebrew name Ya'aqov which meant "holder of the heel" or "supplanter". The biblical Jacob (later called Israel) was born holding his twin brother Esau's heel. He was the son of Isaac and Rebecca and the father of the twelve founders of the twelve tribes of Israel.
Sawyer: 1: One who saws wood
2: A river snag

Ford: One who lived near a ford or river crossing, from the Old English ford, meaning "pass or crossing."
James Ford was an American civic leader and business owner in southern Illinois at the turn of the 19th century. Despite his clean public image, he was also secretly a river pirate and the leader of a gang that would come to be known as "Ford's Ferry Gang". His gang was the river equivalent of highway robbers; they would hijack ferries and flatboats with tradable goods from local farms coming down the Ohio River. At one point, they used the "Cave-in-Rock" as their headquarters, on the Illinois side of the lower Ohio River, which is about 85 miles below Evansville, Indiana.

Walt Lloyd
Walter: From a Germanic name meaning "ruler of the army", composed of the elements wald "rule" and heri "army".
LLoyd: From a surname derived from Welsh llwyd meaning "grey".


Jin Kwon
    Jin:
  • Jin Dynasty (265-420)
  • Jin Dynasty (1115-1234) (Jinn)
  • Jin, a state in China during the Spring and Autumn Period
  • Later Jin Dynasty, founded in 1616 by Nurhaci
  • Jin, a ruler of the Xia dynasty
  • The Jin state of late Bronze Age Korea
  • Jìn, an abbreviation for Shanxi province in the People's Republic of China
  • Giant Korean gorilla like monster
  • The traditional Chinese unit of weight, defined in the twentieth century as half of a kilogram
  • Jin or Jin-yu, a subdivision of spoken Chinese, spoken over most of Shanxi province of China, as well as adjourning areas in Hebei, Henan, and Shaanxi provinces.
  • The mythological creature jinn, see genie.


Sun Kwon
I Got Nothing


Kate Austen
    Katherine:
  • 1:Hekateros was the GOD of rustic dancing, and skillful hands.
    Hekateros also means each of two, or with both hands.
  • 2:Hecate-Greek goddess of witchcraft, tombs, demons, and the underworld
    Goddess of the Moon, protector of sailors
    Austen:
  • Short form of Augustine: Early Christian church father and philosopher who served (396-430) as the bishop of Hippo (in present-day Algeria). Through such writings as the autobiographical Confessions (397) and the voluminous City of God (413-426), he profoundly influenced Christianity, arguing against Manicheanism and Donatism and helping to establish the doctrine of original sin. Augustine emphasized man's need for grace.
  • Another Saint Augustine was the Italian missionary sent to England to convert the Anglo-Saxons in the 6th century.


Charlie Pace
Charles: From the Germanic name Karl, which was derived from a Germanic word which meant "man". However, an alternative theory states that the name is derived from the common Germanic element heri meaning "army, warrior".
Pace: Step or Peace


John Locke
John: See Jack Sheppard
John Locke: (August 29, 1632 - October 28, 1704) was a 17th-century English philosopher concerned primarily with society and epistemology. Locke's notions of a "government with the consent of the governed" and people's natural rights (life, liberty, and property) had an enormous influence on the development of political philosophy. His ideas, which formed the basis for the concepts used in American law and government, allowing the colonists to justify revolution, are often contrasted with his practice of investing in the English slave-trade. Locke's epistemology and philosophy of mind also had a great deal of significant influence well into the Enlightenment period. Locke has been placed in a group called the British Empiricists, which includes David Hume and George Berkeley. Locke is perhaps most often contrasted with Thomas Hobbes.

Michael Dawson
Michael: From the Hebrew name Miyka'el which meant "who is like God?". This is the name of one of the seven archangels in Hebrew tradition and the only one identified as an archangel in the Bible. In the Book of Revelation in the New Testament he is portrayed as the leader of heaven's armies, and thus is considered the patron saint of soldiers
Dawson: Son of David.
David: Hebrew for 'Beloved'. King of Israel

Ana-Lucia Cortez
Anna: Latinate form of HANNAH. It appears briefly in the New Testament belonging to a prophetess who recognized Jesus as the Messiah.
Lucia: Feminine form of LUCIUS. Saint Lucia was a 4th-century martyr from Syracuse who had her eyes gouged out.
Lucius: Roman praenomen, or given name, which was derived from Latin lux "light". Two Etruscan kings of early Rome had this name as well as several prominent later Romans, including Lucius Annaeus Seneca (known simply as Seneca), a famous statesman, philosopher, orator and tragedian.
Cortez: Hernando Cortés conquered Mexico for Spain.

Vincent
From the Roman name Vincentius, which was from Latin vincere "to conquer".


Rose
In part it means simply "rose" from the word for the fragrant flower (derived from Latin rosa). However, it may have originally been a short form of names beginning with the Germanic element hros meaning "horse".


Dannielle Rousseau
Dannielle: French feminine form of DANIEL
Daniel: From the Hebrew name Daniyel meaning "God is my judge". Daniel was a Hebrew prophet whose story is told in the Book of Daniel in the Old Testament. He lived during the Jewish captivity in Babylon, where he served in the court of the king, rising to prominence by interpreting the king's dreams. The book also presents Daniel's four visions of the end of the world.
Rousseau: Jean-Jacques Rousseau (June 28, 1712 - July 2, 1778) was a Franco-Swiss philosopher, writer, political theorist, and self-taught composer of The Age of Enlightenment. Rousseau's political ideas influenced the French Revolution, the development of communist and socialist theory, and the growth of nationalism. His legacy as a radical and revolutionary is perhaps best demonstrated by his most famous line, from his most important work, The Social Contract: "Man is born free but everywhere he is in chains."

Desmond
Old Irish language name which roughly translates to "mystically handsome". It is drawn from a Celtic tale of a dark haired mystical man who used to visit rural villages and seduce local women. The tale goes that the man drew power from the Blarney Stone found in the Desmond County. His conversation was considered intoxicating and hypnotic leaving women powerless.



Lost
Lost Uk Promo
Roger Ebert on trippy "Lost" promo
Via Alt.Tv.Lost-Google Newsgroup