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30 September 2007

Soros writes a check to buy commercial satellite time to see what the Myanmar Junta has been hiding from the world in the jungle

e-mail to a high school student who e-mailed me a few months ago with questions for a school homework report. Her teacher had assigned her to research George Soros, and when she started Googling, she found 157,662 websites that believe George Soros is the Evil Incarnate Antichrist and want to assassinate him.

And me. George's Biggest Fan. I want to buy the guy lunch. Just because he has U$22,000,000,000 , why should he always pick up the tab? Food is cheap. I want to buy George Soros lunch. So she e-mailed Elmer Elevator, President of the George Soros Fan Club of Earth, and wanted to know what up with that, and I told her.

The sooner schoolchildren learn that George Soros will not cook and eat them, but rather is one of their Very Best Friends working to make a better and more decent Earth for their future, the better.

As with almost every Vleep-post, there's an image, and a quite interesting image at that, but for a change you have to dive for it. But I guess when you get to it, click on it to make it bigger and clearer.

Ecclesiastes to the contrary: There IS something new under the sun!


Yo hello and greetings L****, also Ramadan Kareem, Happy Yom Kippur --

I thought about you when I read these stories today. Read deep and you'll find Soros' Open Society Institute writing the checks to buy the commercial satellite time for this very novel and ambitious project.

Myanmar / Burma is one of the "darkest" countries in the world. The military dictatorship is a lot like North Korea and tries to keep its repressive and violent activities secret from the rest of the world.

But now it seems you can't keep these kinds of things secret anymore. Satellite cameras look down on every corner of the planet and find evidence of serious human rights abuses.

One of the things that's always impressed me about our friend George Soros is how wide and how deep his passion for human rights and human freedom is. It's easy for people in the West to concentrate on our own "neighborhood" troubles, and ignore faraway troubles in places like Asia, Africa and Latin America. Naturally our first instincts are to care most about people who look and dress like us, and we have natural difficulties opening our hearts and concerns to the people who live in very different societies.

Soros seems to have devoted his life to growing beyond these natural human instincts. No place on Earth needs the concern and help of people of goodwill more than Myanmar/Burma, but for decades the terrible things the junta has done have been almost completely ignored in the Western media.

A few weeks ago, before Buddhist monks began public protests against the junta, Jim Carrey made a surprising YouTube video about Myanmar and its imprisoned Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi. It's interesting not just for itself, but because he's turned YouTube into a serious communications tool that's not just a carnival of silly stunts. That really surprised me (pleasantly).

and a later message to the United Nations Secretary General:

(If you want to find the Earth's most serious people, check out the comedians and the clowns. Strange, but often true.)

For your next George Soros assignment: Why do so many people hate a guy who's so passionate about human rights and freedom?

Have a great school year! I still don't understand why you're not in college yet.



Reuters (newswire UK)
Saturday 29 September 2007

Satellites confirm reports of Myanmar violence

by Maggie Fox, Health and Science Editor

WASHINGTON, Sept 28 (Reuters) -- Satellite images confirm reports earlier this year of burned villages, forced relocations and other human rights abuses in Myanmar, scientists said on Friday.

The American Association for the Advancement of Science said the high-resolution photographs taken by commercial satellites document a growing military presence at 25 sites across eastern Myanmar, matching eyewitness reports.

"We found evidence of 18 villages that essentially disappeared," AAAS researcher Lars Bromley said in an interview.

"We got reporting in late April that a set of villages in Karen state had been burned. We were actually able to identify burn scars on the ground -- square-shaped burn scars the size of houses."

Myanmar, formerly Burma, is suffering its worst unrest since a 1988 rebellion by students and monks.

The military government in the poor and isolated Southeast Asian country has long been accused of repression.

Aung Din, policy director for the U.S. Campaign for Burma activist group, said his organization will use the evidence to pressure Myanmar's government, which this week begun a violent crackdown to quell protests led by Buddhist monks.

"We are trying to send a message to the military junta that we are watching from the sky," he told reporters in a conference call.

He said the images also will be used pressure the Chinese government to support U.N. sanctions against the junta.

Din said the satellite images corroborate reports by refugees and human rights activists, who say abuses have been going on in many parts of the country for years.

The researchers are now gathering satellite images of major cities inside Myanmar.

"As most communication links from these cities are cut, these images -- if they come through -- will be one of the few ways to understand the level of deployment of the military regime," Bromley told reporters.


Bromley's group got funding from the Open Society Institute and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation to book satellite time over Myanmar and to buy archived images.

"If an attack was reported in a certain area and that attack was said to have destroyed a village or certain villages, we looked for satellite images before and after the date of attack," Bromley said.

"We literally scroll through them inch by inch and look for villages that essentially disappeared."

They also found evidence of "forced relocation -- where a lot of people are taken from more remote areas and forced to build homes in areas under control of the military government," Bromley said.

"In one area around a military camp that we spotted, there were about 31 villages that popped up in a space of about 5 1/2 years," he said.

"That is either an incredible baby boom or some sort of targeted development program or, because we have no information on either of those, the forced relocation would be a logical candidate."

The AAAS has used the same technology to document destruction in Sudan's Darfur region and Zimbabwe.

The AAAS worked with three human rights groups to follow up on descriptions of more than 70 instances of rights violations from mid-2006 through early 2007 in eastern Myanmar's Karen state and surrounding regions.

It was not easy -- the satellites are only rarely over Myanmar, there is often cloud cover and the lush forest grows quickly to mask evidence of damage. But they got images of the locations of 31 reported events and were able to corroborate reports of human rights violations at 25 of them. (Additional reporting by Julie Steenhuysen in Chicago)

- 30 -

© Reuters 2007. All rights reserved.


Copyright 2007 Associated Press

In images provided by the American Association for the Advancement of Science, before-and-after satellite images show the site of an apparent military encampment in Burma on Nov. 11, 2000, (top), and again on Dec. 13, 2006, (bottom), when new bamboo fencing can be seen. The human rights group, Free Burma Rangers, reported a major expansion of this camp in 2006, corroborated by the AAAS analysis of images. Satellite photos showing the disappearance of villages and a buildup of army camps offer what researchers say is potential evidence of human rights abuses in Myanmar, the scene of bloody anti-government protests that have drawn tens of thousands of demonstrators. (AP Photo/Top image: GeoEye Satellite Image. Bottom image: DigitalGlobe)

The Associated Press (newswire US)
Friday 28 September 2007

Satellite Images May Show Myanmar Abuses

Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON -- While the government's bloody crackdown on street demonstrations in Myanmar has drawn the world's attention, newly released satellite photos provide evidence that the military there has destroyed villages and forcibly relocated people in the countryside.

Images collected over the last year focused on sites in eastern Myanmar, helping document reports of villages being burned or eliminated, new villages where people had been relocated and rapidly expanding military camps, Lars Bromley of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, said Friday.

Meanwhile Myanmar soldiers clubbed and dragged away activists while firing tear gas and warning shots to break up demonstrations and the government cut Internet access, raising fears that a deadly crackdown would intensify.

Troops also occupied Buddhist monasteries in a bid to clear the streets of Myanmar's revered monks, who have spearheaded the demonstrations, and estimates of the death toll ranged from 10 to 200 or more.

Myanmar, also known as Burma, has become the focus of international pressure to curtail the violent repression of its citizens.

"We are trying to send a message to the military junta that we are watching from the sky," Aung Din, policy director for the U.S. Campaign for Burma, said Friday at a briefing on the photos.

The American Association for the Advancement of Science said it compiled the satellite images from organizations operating in the country. Bromley, director of the association's Geospatial Technologies and Human Rights project, said they were obtained from commercial firms, using low-orbit satellites that pass over Myanmar every day or so.

"Physical evidence of reported attacks on civilians sometimes can be subtle compared to the slash-and-burn types of destruction that we saw in Darfur or Zimbabwe. It's also a lush ecosystem where plants can quickly grow to cover burn marks and clouds and terrain often block satellite observation," he said.

Nonetheless, he said he was able to map the locations of many reported human rights violations.

"Eighteen of the locations showed evidence consistent with destroyed or damaged villages," he said. "We found evidence of expanded military camps in four other locations as well as multiple possibly relocated villages, and we documented growth in one refugee camp on the Thai border."

"These things are happening over quite a range, it's not just an isolated incident," Bromley said.

"We're not necessarily drawing conclusions about what happened to these villages, that comes form organizations we work with," he explained.

But, for example, there were reports of attacks on villages in April and satellite images later showed the blackened remains of burned villages.

In addition, the photos showed several new villages near military camps, indicating forced relocations.

Bromley said that since the demonstrations began in recent days satellites have been turned toward the major cities, but he noted that this is the cloudy season.

"We are hoping for a gap in the clouds," he said.

Satellite images showed multiple burn scars in otherwise thick green forest in the Papun district and before-and-after images showed the removal of structures, consistent with eyewitness reports of village destruction.

Signs of an expanded military presence, such as the buildup of bamboo fencing around a camp, and construction of a satellite camp, also were identified, Bromley said.

Buildup of military camps and disappearance of villages and buildings were also documented in the Toungoo and Dooplaya districts.

The military took control of Myanmar in 1962 and since then had regularly clashed with pro-democracy groups. Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi, a democracy advocate, has been detained by the military for years.

The current crisis began August 19 with rallies against a fuel price hike. It escalated when monks began joining the protests.

President Bush announced economic sanctions against Myanmar on Thursday, and other countries have also condemned the actions.

First lady Laura Bush and Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-California, have previously condemned human rights violations in Myanmar.

In a plea to Myanmar's ruling military regime, Mrs. Bush said earlier this week, "I want to say to the armed guards and to the soldiers: Don't fire on your people. Don't fire on your neighbors." Her remarks were in a Voice of America interview.

AAAS, a nonprofit general scientific society, previously used satellite technology to seek evidence of destruction in Darfur and Zimbabwe. The latest research was supported by the Open Society Institute and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

- 30 -

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

27 September 2007

Shaving & yanking hair from Badgers <-- (the most important & controversial thing on Earth)

Click image to enlarge.

First Day Issue: Shaving
Tierra de los Sueños / TdSPosta

Copyright (c) 2007 Robert Merkin
All rights reserved.

~ ~ ~

A. H. said...

fun. i love the whole ritual of shaving.

always use a brush. and don't use gel. use cream.

buy a straight edge too while you're at it.

check it out.

oh and ebay has some awesome straight edge razors by zeepk.

Saturday, 29 September, 2007
patfromch said...

whoa straight edge shaving ??? i mean Minor Threat from DC ruled but straight edge shaving ???? Take a break mate and thing about a redesign of your blog, looks a bit hazy.

Shaving is indeed a ritual , women will never understand it. i like to listen to loud hard rock like Van halen or Rush, screw those modern shavers, i would like to have one of those old ones that look like butterfly knives.

Very good image there, maybe I will print it and hang it up in the bathroom somewhere

hey Bob btw have you heard anything from ub re the Zivilcourage Mail Art ?

Saturday, 29 September, 2007
Jim Olson said... need a real, damascus steel straight-edge razor that you've sharpened yourself and honed on a strap. You can't get a closer shave. I only shave once a week these days since I'm not really working, but on Sunday mornings before I go to preach, its the straight edge for me. Its sort of a ritual preparation for preaching.

Saturday, 29 September, 2007
Vleeptron Dude said...

the absolutely craziest thing about this blog is the Things that generate huge controversy and tons of comments, versus the things I post which just elicit Niagaras of Total Silence.

But now that I give it a 2nd thought, I guess that (for males who grow facial hair) Shaving is one of the most Intimate Matters in Life.

Forget Religion, forget Politics, forget Economic Systems.

They are insignificant compared to What Razor Should I Shave With?

Okay, so why am i a member of the Kartridge Kult? Why have I turned my back on the Obvious Holy Truth of the Straight Razor?

I tried, I really tried to be a Good StraightRazorite. But it just didn't work out, and finally I fled the Kult.

1. Keeping the sharp edge requires far too much care and maintenance (although that leather-stropping ritual is certainly one of the loveliest, most deeply satisfying things a man can do in a bathroom).

2. One accidental nick in the straight razor, and the whole damned expensive thing is permanently ruined.

3. I finally decided I was most comfortable with a Shaving Tool which can't also in a pinch be used as a Murder Weapon or a method of Suicide or Self-Mutilation. I wanted a guarantee that no matter how lousy I was at shaving myself, I would never cut my own throat, or slice an ear off.

Since the 19th century, women have traditionally favored the Straight Razor, tucked discreetly in the stocking, as a very effective self-defense weapon. (For this purpose, I guess you don't need to spend as much time and energy stropping.)

4. Modern metallurgy and industrial machining have evolved to produce a convenient and safe tool with a shaving edge that -- prepare for Blasphemy -- is every bit as good as the shave offered by a Straight Razor.

My image shows the fairly recent new Gillette Mach 3. (Schick has a comparable new product, but Schick has well-known right-wing fascist politics.)

DOWNSIDE: Replacement cartridges are ruinously expensive -- possibly my supermarket's most expensive cost-per-weight item.

UPSIDE: A cartridge keeps its sharp edge amazingly long -- easily 10 or more shaves. The cartridges of just 5 years ago kept their edge for a far shorter number of good shaves.

I am SO GLAD everyone has so much passionate feeling about this subject! Buddhist monks and nuns are being shot and hauled away by the Myanmar Junta, the Middle East continues to spiral down the crapper, the War in Iraq ...

But let's Shave!

Sunday, 30 September, 2007
Vleeptron Dude said...

But mainly the reason I care, and the reason I made the stamp ...

It's about the Badgers.

It's because for me to have My Perfect Shave, some poor Badger has to have his or her hair yanked out.

I don't know if the Badger survives this processes or not. I've never wanted to ask.

All I know is -- the Perfect Brush for the Perfect Shave Must be made of Badger Hair. I don't want to know anything more about it.

(But if you have a good URL all about yanking hair from Badgers, by all means, please post it.)

Sunday, 30 September, 2007
Vleeptron Dude said...

Oh and you bet I would be deeply honored indeed if any of the Shavers of Earth copied and framed my stamp and hung it in his (or her) bathroom. It was sort of designed for that purpose to begin with. In my bathroom it would go very nicely with my authentic William Marvey rotating illuminated barber pole -- the envy of all shaving males everywhere.

Sunday, 30 September, 2007

24 September 2007

Send us! We're never drunk! We don't get jealous! We don't want to come back!


I suppose I don't have to explain the Standard Model to the List, and that's a Very Good Thing, because I couldn't. But you can buy it on a big wall chart, and just about every itty-bitty thing that GCE members claim to detect with their nifty gizmos, and how they all relate to each other, is on the wall chart. (Raise your hand if you own the wall chart.)

Well ... I keep waiting, but nobody here has claimed his/her gizmo detects Higgs Bosons. At the moment, best hope for that rests on the Large Hadron Collider which CERN in Switzerland expects to turn ON this May. Two protons will smash into one another at 14 TeV (terra electron volts), and that ought to furp out a Higgs Boson or two if they're there.

Interestingly enough, we don't have to be left out in the cold in CERN's hunt for the Higgs. The LHC will produce 400,000,000 proton collisions per second, producing 40,000 gigabytes of data per second. You can donate your PC's idle CPU time to help analyze this massive data set in a distributed computing project (like SETI_at_Home or Folding_at_Home). Here's a very friendly overview.

Anyway, Steven Weinberg and his colleagues Abdus Salam and Sheldon Glashow shared the 1979 Nobel Physics Prize for developing the Standard Model. When you have a hard-science Nobel, you can say pretty much anything you want, and pretty much everybody listens. Last week at the Space Telescope Science Institute (the Hubble folks), Weinberg savagely lashed out at every aspect of manned spaceflight. A sample:

"The International Space Station is an orbital turkey ... No important science has come out of it. I could almost say no science has come out of it. And I would go beyond that and say that the whole manned spaceflight program, which is so enormously expensive, has produced nothing of scientific value."

He's hardly the first. James Van Allen (died 2006) was a lifelong critic of manned space programs, saying that robotic space probes "have delivered on their promises and have gone far beyond them." In 1985 he called President Reagan's endorsement of a manned space station "so speculative and so poorly founded that no one of lesser stature would have dared mention it to an informed audience."

In 2004 Van Allen was just as hostile to President Bush's manned space projects to the Moon and Mars. "I'm one of the most durable and fervent advocates of space exploration, but my take is that we could do it robotically at far less cost and far greater quantity and quality of results."

Here's an MSNBC pickup of 's story about Weinberg's remarks.

I particularly like

"Human beings don't serve any useful function in space. They radiate heat, they're very expensive to keep alive and unlike robotic missions, they have a natural desire to come back, so that anything involving human beings is enormously expensive."

23 September 2007

free money, tons of it, straight from the US Treasury

Officials of the US-led Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) do the mess-around with huge amounts of ca$h sent straight from the US Treasury to Iraq to jump-start the moribund Iraqi economy. (Photo filched from The Village Voice, newspaper, New York City USA.)

I don't use my e-mail client's automated Spam filter, because these Dumb Silicon Helpers tend to make real e-mail that I wanted to read vanish into the 11th Dimension (it is now generally believed that there are 11 dimensions; if Nobel Prize physicists aren't laughing, you shouldn't either).

And also I like to know who's out there and what they want to say to me or offer me.

Regularly they offer me 3 inches / 7.5 cm longer penis length, Viagra, women, narcotics, and they want to inform me that they have detected suspicious activity on my Wells Fargo Bank account or my eBay account, so to safeguard my account please respond to this message with my name, address, DOB and Social Security Number.

And they want to offer me Fabulous Wealth!!!

They have heard, from halfway around the planet, that I am a trustworthy, reliable, discreet and clever fellow -- just the kind of guy they need to partner with to manage to get $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ safely out of Meltdownistan to the good old United States of America.

I got this one today, and I like it.

For one thing, he's a US Army sergeant, and I'm a US Army vet! We're brothers! He wouldn't fuck me, and I'd never fuck him, because we wore green clothes.

As for this strange story about all this cash lying around in Iraq waiting to be shoved into a duffel bag and flown back to the States on a military transport plane -- is it credible?

From Wikipedia's article on Paul Bremer, the Bush-appointed civilian czar of the US-led Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) after the US-led military invasion and occupation of Iraq:


Criticism and controversies
Failure to perform month-end cash reconciliations

Under Bremer’s stewardship the CPA requested U$12,000,000,000 in cash from the US treasury. Under Bremer’s stewardship the CPA paid out U$12,000,000,000 in cash. The external auditors management notes[19] point out that the CPA didn’t perform a cash reconciliation until April 2004, eleven months into Bremer's mandate, when they started their work.

Failure to employ qualified internal auditors

In his second regulation,[20] Paul Bremer committed the Coalition Provisional Authority to hire a reputable firm of certified chartered accountants, to serve as internal auditors, to help make sure the Coalition's finances were administered according to modern accounting principles. These internal auditors would be separate and distinct from the external auditors who would report to the International Advisory and Monitoring Board. Paul Bremer did not honour this essential commitment. He did not make sure the CPA hired internal auditors.

When the external auditors arrived they learned that Bremer had not made sure the CPA lived up to the commitment to hire internal auditors to help set up a reliable accounting system. On the contrary they learned that a single contracted consultant kept track of the CPA’s expenditures in a series of spreadsheets.

The external auditors reported that rather than use a modern double-entry accounting system the CPA used what they described as “a single-entry, cash based, transaction list”.

Unaccounted-for funds

On January 30, 2005, an official report[21] by the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction, Stuart Bowen, cited by Time, stated that U$9,000,000,000 for the reconstruction of Iraq might have disappeared in frauds, corruption and other misbehavior. On one particular salary register, only 602 names among 8206 could be verified. As another cited example, the Coalition Authority authorized Iraqi officials to postpone declaring the reception of U$2,500,000,000 , which the provisional government had received in spring through the Oil for Food program.[22]

Bremer wrote an eight-page reply to deny the accusations and stated that, during the IG's inquiry, Bowen's people refused to interview Bremer's deputies, and the IG's report failed to mention that Bremer and his people worked under extraordinary conditions, faced a high turnover rate, and had insufficient number of personnel to carry out their rebuilding and humanitarian relief efforts.

Bremer's claim that Bowen's staff made no attempt to interview his staff is at odds with the detailed account of the external auditors, of their attempts to meet with Bremer and his staff. In their management notes they describe how some of the CPA's senior staff, including Bremer himself, just would not make themselves available to meet with the auditors. Others, like George Wolfe, the CPA's de facto treasurer, showed a total lack of cooperation.

As head of the CPA, Bremer bears the overall responsibility for the CPA's hiring policies that led to his staff being dangerously inexperienced and unable to provide the oversight necessary to protect the funds they were administering.[improper synthesis?]

This issue also became a topic of discussion during some of Bremer's Q&A sessions with students who attended Bremer's presentations during Bremer's campus speaking tours. Some questioned Bremer if he could have done things differently in Iraq, but were notably disappointed when Paul Bremer avoided answering the question. Bremer allegedly responded to one such question with “ I will tell you what I told them, I'm saving that for my book... I need more time to reflect.”

In February 2007, Bremer defended the way he spent billions of dollars in Iraqi funds after the U.S. invasion. In a prepared testimony he said that he did the best he could to kickstart the Iraqi economy, "which was flat on its back."[23]


A picky person who thinks he's Herr Kommissar Berlach or Sherlock Holmes might wonder why Sarge is using an e-mail address from the Peoples Republic of China, or why the automatic message at the bottom es en espan~ol.

Well look -- he can't use his Army e-mail account, the US military censors are reading all those outgoing e-mails from soldiers and Marines to make sure nobody sends THIS WAR SUX AND IS INSANE BRING ME HOME NOW!!!

And the Surge has a long way to go before the Sarge can wander down to Internet Cafe Baghdad and e-mail me from there.

Anyway, you know the Vleeptron drill: If you and Sarge make a deal and you get the $$$$$$$$$, you owe me a Finder's Fee of a whomp-ass fancy lobster dinner somewhere.


----- Original Message -----
From: sgt. javis reeves
Sent: 9/23/2007 10:51:26 AM
Subject: CAN I TRUST YOU?.

Hello Pal,

I hope my email meets you well. I am in need of your assistance. My name is Sgt. Jarvis Reeves Jr. I am a military attache with the Engineering unit here in Ba'qubah Iraq for the united state, we have about $25 Million dollars [ U$25,000,000 ] that we want to move out of the country.

My partners and I need a good partner someone we can trust to actualize this venture.The money is from oil proceeds and legal.But we are moving it through diplomatic means to your house directly or a safe and secured location of your choice using diplomatic courier services.

But can we trust you? Once the funds get to you, you take your 25% out and keep our own 75%. Your own part of this deal is to find a safe place where the funds can be sent to. Our own part is sending it to you.

If you are interested reply to Email:

I will furnish you with more details.

Awaiting your urgent response.
Your Buddy.
Sgt. Jarvis Reeves .

* * *

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pretty young nude Suisse women / Hübsch jung nackt Suisse Frauen hier on Vleeptron_Z! (continued) Also: Zentrum Paul Klee???

Klicken Sie

Gee, Agence-Vleeptron Presse sure wishes we had a Mensch-on-the-Ground somewhere near Bern CH, so we could find out something about the museum that opened in 2005 dedicated to the works of the Kunstler/artist Paul Klee.

Maybe it's very small or easy to overlook. Maybe nobody in Bern has said anything about it. Maybe they didn't put up any signs advertising the place. Maybe there are no busses or trams or roads or bicycle paths to Schöngrün. (Does that mean "pretty green place"?)

If we had an observant M-o-t-G in or near Bern, maybe we could learn all the local gossip about Zentrum Paul Klee, and maybe about Paul himself.

Personally, I believe that anybody who is awarded Swiss citizenship six days after he dies deserves a fancy new museum. Who says government bureaucrats aren't responsive to the needs of people?

I got to thinking about my fave artist yesterday when I finally got a Comment on the second post I posted to the new VleeptronZ, which was titled

pretty young nude Suisse women / Hübsch jung nackt Suisse Frauen hier on Vleeptron_Z!

Well, okay, it was my old scam of luring people to Vleeptron with outlandish false promises of filthy porn and huge sacks of free money. When they got there to see the nude Swiss women, all they saw was a painting by Paul Klee. Of a woman. If you can tell.

(Actually I used to date a woman who looked exactly like her, maybe the daughter of the model who posed for Klee. Did he actually make women stand around in his atelier for weeks while he painted things that looked like that?)

So yesterday kommst Dirty Girl who schreibt:

Dirty Girl said...

well hopefully you get riolling again and here is a comment to bring the spiders back to ya. Good luck to you
Saturday, 22 September, 2007

Vleeptron Dude said...

As you can see, I am hopeless at the porn industry, I try to post nude women and they hang in the art gallery. But YOU ... there's the Real Stuff! Danke!
Saturday, 22 September, 2007

So if you go to that post, you can admire the beautiful Paul Klee painting -- which maybe now hangs in Zentrum Paul Klee -- and then when you get bored looking at the beautiful art, you can click on Dirty Girl's name and see some genuine industrial porn. Where, exactly, Dirty Girl comes from I don't know, but her juggling of English makes me think she is from Mitteleuropa, so maybe she got to VleeptronZ because she was Googling for jung nackt Suisse Frauen. I hope she also found the healthy attractive Suisse Frauen und Mensche who were cheering for the Suisse team against Togo.

Bremer's Order No. 17: why Blackwater can get away with murder

Paul Bremer (center), head of the Coalition Provisional Authority (the US-led military occupation authority), in Iraq. The bodyguard isn't wearing a U.S. military uniform.



Pursuant to my authority as head of the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA), and under the laws and usages of war, and consistent with relevant U.N. Security Council resolutions, including Resolutions 1483 (2003), 1511 (2003) and 1546 (2004),...

Conscious of the need to clarify the status of the CPA, the MNF, Foreign Liaison, Diplomatic and Consular Missions and their Personnel, certain International Consultants, and certain contractors in respect of the Government and the local courts,

Recognizing the need to provide for the circumstances that will pertain following June 30, 2004, and noting the consultations with the incoming Iraqi Interim Government in this regard and on this order,

I hereby promulgate the following:

Section 1

10) “Iraqi legal process” means any arrest, detention or legal proceedings in Iraqi courts or other Iraqi bodies, whether criminal, civil, or administrative.

11) “Contractors” means non-Iraqi legal entities or individuals not normally resident in Iraq, including their non-Iraqi employees and Subcontractors not normally resident in Iraq, supplying goods or services in Iraq under a Contract.

Section 2
Iraqi Legal Process

1) Unless provided otherwise herein, the MNF, the CPA, Foreign Liaison Missions, their Personnel, property, funds and assets, and all International Consultants shall be immune from Iraqi legal process.

Section 4

2) Contractors shall not be subject to Iraqi laws or regulations in matters relating to the terms and conditions of their Contracts, including licensing and registering employees, businesses and corporations; provided, however, that Contractors shall comply with such applicable licensing and registration laws and regulations if engaging in business or transactions in Iraq other than Contracts. Notwithstanding any provisions in this Order, Private Security Companies and their employees operating in Iraq must comply with all CPA Orders, Regulations, Memoranda, and any implementing instructions or regulations governing the existence and activities of Private Security Companies in Iraq, including registration and licensing of weapons and firearms.

3) Contractors shall be immune from Iraqi legal process with respect to acts performed by them pursuant to the terms and conditions of a Contract or any sub-contract thereto. Nothing in this provision shall prohibit MNF Personnel from preventing acts of serious misconduct by Contractors, or otherwise temporarily detaining any Contractors who pose a risk of injury to themselves or others, pending expeditious turnover to the appropriate authorities of the Sending State. In all such circumstances, the appropriate senior representative of the Contractor’s Sending State in Iraq shall be notified.

Section 13
Entry, Residence and Departure

2) The speedy entry into and departure from Iraq of MNF, CPA and Foreign Liaison Mission Personnel, Contractors and International Consultants shall be facilitated to the maximum extent practicable. For that purpose, MNF, CPA and Foreign Liaison Mission Personnel, and International Consultants shall be exempt from passport and visa regulations and immigration inspection and restrictions as well as payment of any fees or charges on entering into or departing from Iraq. They shall also be exempt from any regulations governing the residence of aliens in Iraq, including registration, but shall not be considered as acquiring any right to permanent residence or domicile in Iraq.

4) For the proper performance of Contracts, Contractors shall be provided with facilities concerning their entry into and departure from Iraq as well as their repatriation in time of crisis. For this purpose, there shall promptly be issued to Contractors, free of charge and without any restrictions, all necessary visas, licenses or permits.

Section 20
Effective Period

This Order shall enter into force on the date of signature. It shall remain in force for the duration of the mandate authorizing the MNF under U.N. Security Council Resolutions 1511 and 1546 and any subsequent relevant resolutions and shall not terminate until the departure of the final element of the MNF from Iraq...

Signed 6/27/04

L. Paul Bremer, Administrator
Coalition Provisional Authority

Okay, the call girl thing is his business. (And his wife's.) But check out how he's spending our tax money.

David Vitter as he won election to the US Senate in 2004, with wife Wendy and son Jack. (Associated Press / Wide World photo)

Sometimes I feel lazy when I just post a news article but don't write a piece of my Original Wisdom to explain my Feelings about it. Like, I'm not doing my Political Blog Job. I'm just Copying & Pasting.

But uhhh ... what can I possibly say about this?

Help Agence-Vleeptron Presse out here. What are Your Feelings about this? Leave A Comment.

Voters of Louisiana elected this guy to the U.S. Senate. Before that, he was a U.S. Congressman. He made the phone calls to the DC call girl service while he was a member of the House. It's possible he was just lonely and wanted to chat on the phone. Anyway, after the DC Madame outed his phone calls, he said he was very sorry.

from Wikipedia:
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Please see the discussion on the talk page.
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Vitter was born in New Orleans to Audrey Malvina St. Raymond and Albert Leopold Vitter.[2] He received a B.A. from Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1983; a B.A. from Oxford University in 1985, as a Rhodes Scholar; and a Juris Doctor from the law school of Tulane University in New Orleans in 1988. He was a lawyer and a member of the Louisiana House of Representatives from 1992 to 1999, when he entered the U.S. House.

Vitter and his wife Wendy, a former prosecutor,[3] have three daughters, Sophie, Lise, and Airey, and a son, Jack.


Well, arguably (it's certainly what *I'd* argue if I got caught making phone calls to a call girl service), this was his personal business, stuff he was doing in his private life, doesn't affect his role as an elected official. (It may possibly be a series of low-rent prostitution crimes in DC, but that's still being looked into.)

Now we come to the way he wants to spend our tax dollars.

Louisiana, by the way, is the state that got whomped by the most destructive natural disaster in U.S. history, and its citizens are still having a very hard time rebuilding their lives. They still need lots of help from the federal government.

So here's how their Senator Vitter wants to spend $100,000 of your federal tax money to help the people of Louisiana.

Oh, does anybody need me to post this? Well, here it is anyway, from the United States Constitution:

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.


The Times-Picayune
(New Orleans, Louisiana USA)
Saturday 22 September 2007

Vitter earmarked
federal money
for creationist group

by Bill Walsh, Washington bureau

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Senator David Vitter (Republican-Louisiana) earmarked $100,000 in a spending bill for a Louisiana Christian group that has challenged the teaching of Darwinian evolution in the public school system and to which he has political ties.

The money is included in the labor, health and education financing bill for fiscal 2008 and specifies payment to the Louisiana Family Forum "to develop a plan to promote better science education."

The earmark appears to be the latest salvo in a decades-long battle over science education in Louisiana, in which some Christian groups have opposed the teaching of evolution and, more recently, have pushed to have it prominently labeled as a theory with other alternatives presented. Educators and others have decried the movement as a backdoor effort to inject religious teachings into the classroom.

The nonprofit Louisiana Family Forum, launched in Baton Rouge in 1999 by former state Rep. Tony Perkins, has in recent years taken the lead in promoting "origins science," which includes the possibility of divine intervention in the creation of the universe.

The group's stated mission is to "persuasively present biblical principles in the centers of influence on issues affecting the family through research, communication and networking." Until recently, its Web site contained a "battle plan to combat evolution," which called the theory a "dangerous" concept that "has no place in the classroom." The document was removed after a reporter's inquiry.

Vitter, Forum have ties

The group's tax-exempt status prohibits the Louisiana Family Forum from political activity, but Vitter has close ties to the group. Dan Richey, the group's grass-roots coordinator, was paid $17,250 as a consultant in Vitter's 2004 Senate race. Records also show that Vitter's campaign employed Beryl Amedee, the education resource council chairwoman for the Louisiana Family Forum.

The group has been an advocate for the senator, who was elected as a strong supporter of conservative social issues. When Vitter's use of a Washington, D.C., call-girl service drew comparisons last month to the arrest of Sen. Larry Craig, R-Idaho, in what an undercover officer said was a solicitation for sex in an airport men's room, Family Forum Executive Director Gene Mills came to Vitter's defense.

In a video clip the group posted on the Internet site YouTube, Mills said the two senators' situations are far different. "Craig is denying the allegations," he said. "Vitter has repented of the allegations. He sought forgiveness, reconciliation and counseling."

Vitter's office said it is not surprising that people he employed would also do work for Louisiana Family Forum, which shares his philosophical outlook. He said the education earmark was meant to offer a broad array of views in the public schools.

"This program helps supplement and support educators and school systems that would like to offer all of the explanations in the study of controversial science topics such as global warming and the life sciences," Vitter said in a written statement.

The money in the earmark will pay for a report suggesting "improvements" in science education in Louisiana, the development and distribution of educational materials and an evaluation of the effectiveness of the Ouachita Parish School Board's 2006 policy that opened the door to biblically inspired teachings in science classes.

"I believe it is an important program," Vitter said.

Critics said taxpayer money should not go to support a religion-based program.

"This is a misappropriation of public funds," said Charles Kincade, a civil rights lawyer in Monroe who has been involved in church-state cases. "It's a backdoor attempt to push a religious agenda in the public school system."

Group has history

Former Sen. Rick Santorum, Republican-Pennsylvania, a Christian conservative defeated for re-election in 2004, attempted to open the door for such money when he inserted language into a report accompanying the 2001 No Child Left Behind Act enabling teachers to offer "the full range of scientific views" when "topics that may generate controversy (such as biological evolution)" are taught.

In 1987, the U.S. Supreme Court threw out a Louisiana law that would have required schools to teach creationist theories, which hold that God created the universe, whenever evolution was taught. In 2002, the Louisiana Family Forum unsuccessfully sought to persuade the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to insert a five-paragraph disclaimer in all of its science texts challenging the natural science view that life came about by accident and has evolved through the process of natural selection.

The group notched a victory last year when the Ouachita School Board adopted a policy that, without mentioning the Bible or creationism, gave teachers leeway to introduce other views besides those contained in traditional science texts.

"Many of our educators feel inadequate to address the controversies," said Mills, executive director of the Louisiana Family Forum.

Mills said that his group didn't request the money in the 2008 appropriations bill, and that Vitter's proposal "was a bit of a surprise."

Mills said his group is not attempting to push the teaching of evolution out of the schools, but wants to supplement it. Yet, some of the material posted on the Louisiana Family Forum's Web site suggests a more radical view.

Among other things, a "Louisiana Family Forum Fact Sheet" at one point included "A Battle Plan -- Practical Steps to Combat Evolution" by Kent Hovind, a controversial evangelist who is serving a 10-year prison sentence for tax offenses and obstruction of justice.

Hovind's paper stated, "Evolution is not a harmless theory but a dangerous religious belief" that underpinned the atrocities committed by Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin and Pol Pot of the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia.

Looking deeper urged

"I've got so much stuff on the Web site I don't know what's there," Mills said. "We think that in order to teach controversial topics successfully, you have to teach both sides."

The group's "Evolution Addendum for Public Schools," also posted on the Web site, offers a flavor of its concerns. The document rejects the evolutionary connection between apes and humans, questions the standard explanation of fossil formation and seeks to undercut the prevailing scientific view that life emerged from a series of chemical reactions.

"Under ideal conditions, the odds of that many amino acids coming together in the right order are approximately the same as winning the Power Ball Lotto every week for the next 640 years," it states. "How could this have happened accidentally?"

Kincade, the Monroe lawyer, said Vitter's and Louisiana Family Forum's motives are not benign.

"What you have to do is look below the surface," said Kincade, who holds an undergraduate degree in physics and has been active in legal cases in which religious groups challenge science instruction. "It frames the issue in a way that appeals to America's sense of fair play. The problem is, except for fringe people, evolution is an accepted fact of science. It is not a hotly contested issue. The general concept of natural selection and evolution is settled and beyond dispute. To suggest otherwise is misleading. They are trying to backdoor creationism."

Vitter's appropriation was contained in a database compiled by Taxpayers for Common Sense, a nonprofit group seeking to reduce the number of earmarks in federal legislation. Earlier this year, Congress agreed for the first time to begin linking specially requested earmarks to the names of their sponsors. Taxpayers for Common Sense has compiled thousands of them into searchable databases.

Vitter said the financing request was submitted earlier this year and "was evaluated on its merit." But Steve Ellis, of the taxpayers' group, said most earmarks are not vetted by anyone except the member requesting it.

"Using an earmark to dictate that the Louisiana Family Forum receive the funding to develop a science education program ironically ignores a hallmark of scientific research, making decisions on the basis of competitive, empirical research," Ellis said.

The appropriations bill is awaiting Senate action.

- 30 -

Bill Walsh can be reached at or (202) 383-7817.


Posted by critterhead on 09/22/07 at 9:59PM

"to develop a plan to promote better science education" my rear end... There is nothing scientific that this group offers, although maybe there is something to this creationism thing, because this does not make Vitter look too evolved.

Posted by darwinrulz on 09/22/07 at 10:09PM

Glad I'm first! :)

They're doubting fossil formations??? Linking evolution with Hitler?? Give me a fu*k!ing break!! For anyone, in this day and age, to honestly question the relationship between man and ape, is just astounding....right up there with still believing that the world is flat, or that the earth is the center of the universe....

"Creationism" is NOT science, and never will is a religious ideal that has absolutely NO place in a public school classroom (would be verrrrry interested to know how many teacher in Ouachita Parish who actually do 'introduce other views'), and oddly, the Louisiana Family Forum considers evolution to be a religious belief, when it, in fact, is the very antithesis of a religous view. Next, we'll all be teaching about Panspermia (the idea that space creatures sent germs to earth, thereby creating life explanation of where the spacemen came from), or even better, intelligent design, which teaches that we could come directly from those same spacemen.

Evolution has been affirmed via international consensus in geologic, nuclear, astronomical, biochemical, genetic and other scientific fields. Each field has supported and sharpened the theory, not conflicted with it.

A noisy literalist-evangelical group wants to convert science curriculum for compatibility with its faith. This flies in the face of America's intentionally secular Constitution. Sadly, yielding to such pressure or for personal belief, some public school science teachers undermine their students' understanding of science.

Most religions - including the American Jewish Congress, the General Convention of the Episcopal Church, United Presbyterian Church, the United Methodist Church, the World Lutheran Church, the Unitarian-Universalist Association and the Roman Catholic Church - support evolution. Many Americans, including the nation's millions of agnostics and atheists, send children to the public schools, which must remain secular, respecting all.

Our nation's health care, agriculture and technology depend on objective science education. The silent majority should speak more loudly for unadulterated science education and should elect only politicians who support it.


Posted by darwinrulz on 09/22/07 at 10:10PM

darn you critter for typing faster! lol

Posted by dderoche on 09/22/07 at 10:12PM

My God! (no pun intended) Creationism is not science, it's faith based like any religious belief. Mr. Vitter should check his own moral character before investing our money into his religious belief system to which he is a hypocrite.

Posted by lroussarie on 09/22/07 at 10:19PM

What's next: Will Vitter spend tax payer dollars for research to find out if the Holocaust was real?

Evolution is a fact deal with it. And yes just in case you missed it in the papers the Holocaust was real - no need to amend the history books.

Posted by qtempire on 09/22/07 at 10:37PM

Seems to me that spending government money on creationism is government trying to establish a religion. Seems to me that Vitter would understand that. Unless he's just dense. But that might the case.
Posted by Sandy5555 on 09/22/07 at 10:49PM

It is not out of character with the mechanics of the coalition that put him in the Senate that he would support this. His personal problems aside, there is a genuine question as to whether or not a senator should represent the views of his political constituency. Throwing $100,000 toward this particular constituency which did, in fact, work hard for his election, is not abnormal in the ways of federal politics. Vitter has made some exceptionally stupid personal errors, but he is a very savvy politician, and if he is to stand any chance at all in 2010 he will need the full support of the religious right.

Posted by lwerli1 on 09/22/07 at 10:56PM

Email Vitter and tell him what you really think!

Posted by d088 on 09/22/07 at 11:10PM

I will reserve judgment on the motives of Vitter and the LA Family Forum, since I have no direct knowledge of the situation.

However, doesn't anyone realize that believing in one DOES NOT rule out the belief in the other? You can certainly believe in creationism AND evolution. All it takes is the hand of God (my God, your god, his god, her god, whatever god) to cause the initiation of the "amino acids coming together in the right order." No where to my knowledge does any religious text say that evolution does not exist.

I just upset a bunch of Christian fundamentalists, didn't I. I know the argument, "The Bible says that God created man in his own likeness. How can you say that an ape is God's likeness." My answer to that is, "How can you be so bold as to think that WE are God's likeness?" Doesn't God know what will happen in the future? Doesn't he know what the human form will evolve into over time? We evolve from infancy to adults in mere years. God's time line is MUCH more vast than our minds can understand." I personally feel that God did in fact begin all life, and yes, humans began as a much more primitive life-form that we are now. However, I also believe that we are NOT God's likeness just yet. I feel that we still have MANY, MANY years of evolution before gaining the perfection of God's likeness.

I have no delusions of grandeur concerning my beliefs, these are my simple evaluations of each side of the argument -- without a blind acceptance of either.

Posted by Snake26 on 09/22/07 at 11:27PM

Senator Vitter doing something to his "Cause" thats a good thing. Lucky for Vitter he doesnt have to worry about re-election for another three years, by then his "trouble" would be a minor issue.

Posted by Justtrue on 09/22/07 at 11:38PM

How long must we be stuck with this loser?

Posted by indadrink on 09/22/07 at 11:40PM

monkey see,
monkee do,
they want your money,
they want mine too.

Posted by 23TigerTeeth on 09/22/07 at 11:41PM

Someone asked what's next?

Well, maybe Vitter will try to earmark some federal money to Wendy Cortez so she'll stop doing interviews with the media about her adulterous relationship with our 'family values' senator.

Despite his sponsorship of creationism non-science, we do know that there's one area of science he does believe in: DNA science.

Because according to Wendy Cortez in her WDSU interview Wednesday night, married Senator Vitter used a condom during their sex sessions--and took the used condom with him so as not to leave his DNA material behind in the French Quarter apartment they used.

Now we know why that clerical fraud Gene Mills made all those excuses for Vitter immediately we learned he broke the law with the 'D.C. Madam.' Vitter was making arrangements to send $100,000 to the Rev. Gene Mills' religious-political organization.

Maybe Vitter wants to pay off the creationists so they can 'create' more lies and excuses about our 'family values' whoremonger senator.

Posted by nolalarry on 09/22/07 at 11:41PM

How come [e]very picture of Vitter shows he's facial expression like he just screwed the pooch???

On second thought, maybe he did...

Posted by realityphase on 09/22/07 at 11:46PM

The BIBLE SAYS GOD CREATED THE WORLD? THE BIBLE? HAHAH Have you read the Bible? It's a joke. Any inteligent person can easily read through it and dispell pretty much all of it. It contradicts itself over and over

PLEASE READ THE GOD DELUSION!!!GREAT BOOK. Oh by the way who wrote the BIBLe? oh that's right no one knows, and the left out gospels? Was God wrong? Oh and some guy built a boat in 2 weeks that fit every animanl on earth right? Wait, even if he could build this magical boat how could he even locate these animals?

Oh and please say to me, that isnmt meant to be taken literal? Okay, so some of the bible is literal and some isnt? which part is which? I bet back in the day when pple were more naive and uneducated more and more of the bible that "you" say isnt to be literal they infact took literal and now we call them out on the BS, now they claim "Oh it's not literal"

what a joke

Posted by octhern on 09/23/07 at 1:00AM

What's next? Besides his whoremongering, tacking his name to a water bill which was already policy, now giving $ to a religious group to pursue a religious agenda. Has he heard of the antiestablishment clause? (of course he has--he is a lawyer). Doesn't he know that many of this right wing "Christians" whose agenda he is pushing do not consider him a "Christian" since he is Catholic? Doesn't he realize that he is being used just like he used the whores and lied to his constituents? This man needs to go. He is screwing LA just like he did the Wendy et al.

©2007 All Rights Reserved.

22 September 2007

Commedia finito!

Click for larger.

Teresa Stratas as Nedda.
Enrico Caruso as Canio.
Somebody call the cops.

(From Sandy Steiglitz's Opera Gallery.)

Opera is just exactly the same crap everybody seems to have to put up with in life -- but for two hours in a dark theater, you can be tricked into the illusion that horrible romantic troubles, poverty and hunger, tuberculosis, freezing winters without heat, police brutality and horrible cruelty and injustice can be wrapped in beauty and dignity. A violent kitchen argument can sound so beautiful that you want to put on your best clothes and pay $80 to hear and see the argument again.

Okay. He's a vain, jealous old man. Like a total jerk, he fell so hard for an illiterate teenage slut that he married her. They tour the countryside as clowns putting on a cheesy Punch and Judy show to entertain the hicks. Since the wedding, she has not exactly reformed. Her favorite kind of sex is backstage with handsome young guys in the troupe, so the old man can hear them laughing and going at it.

Ordinarily this tawdry, disgusting human-nature catastrophe would end up as a crime story I would have had to report on for the newspaper after the cops and the medical examiner cleaned up the mess.

But once, they didn't give this disaster to the local crime reporter. They gave it to a pretty talented opera composer. Leoncavallo claimed that this really happened in his little Italian town when he was a kid. While the happy rustic peasants were laughing and eating il popcorno and watching Punch and Judy and Harlequin and Pierot smash each other over the head with whoopie cushions and clubs, and strangle each other, the old clown was really jealous and he was really angry and he pulled out a knife and -- well, you can guess the rest. When it finally dawned on the audience that the dead clowns all over the stage were really dead, the knife wasn't made of rubber, and that wasn't pizza sauce flying all over the place, the crazed old clown stared at them and announced:

Commedia finito!

Probably the way I have just described it doesn't make you want to go out and buy tickets; you probably would rather flee as far and fast as you could from this low-rent trailer park disaster. You'd be making a mistake. It's one of the most powerful and gripping emotional experiences a human being can have. It made Leoncavallo so rich and famous, he regretted having written it; nobody ever wanted to hear much of anything else he wrote afterwards.

Franco Zeffirelli filmed "Pagliacci" in 1982. Plácido Domingo is the fat old clown Canio, and Teresa Stratas is Nedda the nympho teen. If there's ever been a more explosive, inflammatory Nedda or a more gripping production, I don't know about it. It's easy to find it on DVD, and Zeffirelli is renowned for his visually gorgeous films.

Before the iPod and the mp3 there was the CD and the Walkman, before that the 33 1/3 vinyl analog LP record, before that the squawky bakelite 78, and before that ... well, "Pagliacci" hit the repertoire just in time for an amazing new gizmo, the Edison phonograph or gramaphone, the first machine that could capture the human voice and the sounds of musical instruments so you could hear them again and again, whenever you wanted to, at home. Before this machine, all beauty that came from musicians and singers -- well, you had to hear it in the theater, or it was lost forever. (The only exception was the player piano, invented around 1840.)

In 1902, the phonograph company's talent agent found an unknown young tenor who'd never been out of Italy before, and paid him about $100 to shout about 20 opera tunes into the primitive sound-collecting horn, backed by the most skeleton accompaniement -- here just a pianist. Headquarters in London thought the fee was so outrageous, they sent telegrams to order the agent to cancel the deal, but it was too late, and Enrico Caruso sang the tunes and the company released them on phonograph cylinders. It was the perfect collision of time, invention, and beauty -- the voice of a lifetime preserved on the machine of the century. Sales of the new home music machine exploded all over the world.

Here is Caruso as the outraged old clown, just before the final scene, sitting in front of his mirror trying to put on his makeup and his clown suit. The show must go on, and it's the clown's job to laugh, so he's screaming at the mirror, ordering himself to smile and laugh. Turn MUTE OFF and check this out.

Caruso's squawky old phonograph recordings were the first archival music to be digitized -- translated from analog signals into billions of zeros and ones -- and from there cleaned up and brought forward from the hopeless machine of 1902 to the hi-tek audio world of 1980 by computer and mathematical techniques. But cleaned up or squawky, this was the voice and the sensibility of a lifetime.

Terrible old technology can't disguise the wonder of a great singer; the phonograph and the 1930 jukebox can't harm or hide the art and magic and power of Caruso and Billie Holiday.

And all the software at the Jet Propulsion Lab at Cal Tech can't turn Britney Spears into a good singer.

20 September 2007

What Uncle Conrad is doing down in the basement

Click, gets bigger.

From time to time I've mentioned the List I hang on of amateur ionizing radiation enthusiasts and hobbyists. Why should governments and Los Alamos physicists and radiologists have all the fun? Are we not men? Do we not love gizmos? Have we not basements and garages?

Here's a guy what cobbled together a variety of discarded dental X-ray and old shoe-store foot fluoroscope machines, and then imaged a mouse -- I sincerely hope a dead one. In correspondence with the Academy describing his Experiments, he claims the whole rig is Street Legal -- I guess he means under US federal laws.

This is what the parts of a mouse that are opaque to X-rays look like on silver-based photographic film. Or maybe genuine medical/dental X-ray film. Maybe you don't need a license to buy medical X-ray film. And why should you? It's just film, like the Fuji stuff in your old vacation camera that you take to Six Flags Over Dakota.

And you don't have to take a snooty, expensive college textbook's word for it. You can image the insides of a mouse all by yourself down in the basement.

They said I was mad! They laughed at me! Then my wife made me take out the trash and empty the dishwasher! Then she told me it was time for dinner! Hahahahahahaha!

up from fœtid Comment Sewers beneath Ciudad Vleeptron: Gush Hashish / Can't we all just get a bong?

Well, this is very frustrating. This dumb photo, of a giant GUSH HASHISH banner on Ben Yehuda Street in Jerusalem, is only on this one guy's photo album site from which I can't filch it. So to see the original, go HERE.

The Dubai guy also stores his photos on one of these photo album sites, and I find them a total pain in the butt because they make free-and-easy lackadaisical cavalier filching so very difficult. I mean -- it's just Zeroes and Ones! It's not like I'm breaking into your apartment and stealing your underwear!

b'Ivrit, the aforementioned Green Leaf Party is עלה ירוק Ale Yarok.

Ben Yehuda Street, btw, is named for Eliezer Ben Yehuda (1858-1922), who got this brilliant idea to resurrect the certifiably Dead Language of Hebrew to be a Living, Spoken lingo. I wouldn't have given him 2 shekels for his chances. But there ya go, whole buncha people now buy their asparagus and read the paper -- and scream military orders -- in Hebrew.

IDF (Israel Defense Force) Joke:

SERGEANT: I need volunteer who has driver's license and speaks fluent English.


SERGEANT: Okay, clean out the toilets.

Ben Yehuda's son was already a very old man when he had the privilege to come to America and, desperate for some kind of job, end up teaching Hebrew to moi = Huckleberry Finnstein, in my Hebrew School, when I was about 14.

What me and my hoodlum buddies did to this poor doddering old man -- well, if there's a Hell, there's a seat reserved for me. I guess the innocent victims who go to Heaven get to watch juvenile delinquents like me suffer our well-deserved eternal torment, on a Hi-Def giant plasma TV closed circuit channel, in an air-conditioned lounge, while sipping limeade.

(47 years late)

Here is what we did to poor old Dr. Ben Yehuda.

We didn't want to be there for several hours every afternoon -- particularly in the spring -- learning Hebrew. It was a Pearls Before Swine thing. (We were the Swine.)

The classroom was far from the Hebrew School office, and he no longer was a very speedy kind of guy.

There was no clock in the classroom. He had a wristwatch, but didn't seem to trust it or believe it. (Like him, it was very old.) He kept going out into the hallway and checking the clock out there.

As soon as he turned his back on us to write on the blackboard, I would dash out the rear door (I am a very sneaky person) and set the hallway clock ahead by about a half hour or 40 minutes, and then sneak back in to my seat.

So he would check the time off the hallway clock and eventually dismiss the class 40 minutes early, and us hoodlums were OUT OF THERE like greased lightning, and he would pick up his books and slowly dodder toward the office.

Where the secretary would look at him and look at her clock and ask him what the hell he was doing there.

It took him about three weeks to figure out what was going on.


Here's some more Gush Hashish graffiti from Israel:

"The People Are in Solidarity
with a Bloc(k) of Hashish."

It's a pun off slogans of Gush Shalom, the Peacenik Party.

Some of the peaceniks' signs are quite lovely, demanding peace and non-violent conflict resolution in both Hebrew and Arabic.

Notice also the Hammer and Sickle, a flavor of political graffiti you almost never see in the USA. Yet.

But, just as it did during the interminable Vietnam War, I suspect we'll start seeing more Hammers and Sickles on American walls. I'm sending $50 to Cindy Sheehan's congressional campaign to defeat Nancy Pelosi. The Democratic Party sure ain't ending this war. I don't even think they want to end the Iraq War. They just want to stomp Republicans. That's nice and everything, but there's a difference. Screw Nancy Pelosi and all the other Democrats who can't/won't stop the Iraq War. They don't get it. Maybe they'll get it when they're unemployed. I will help them get unemployed.

The other image -- filched from the Ale Yarok/Green Leaf Party site -- is the international symbol, recognized throughout the world, for cops beating the shit out of sick people who get relief from smoking medical marijuana.


Last week we finally went to Cafe Lebanon in downtown QualityOfLifeVille, and just had the dandiest, most delicious time. Business was a bit slow and we got to chat with the woman who runs the place. (She apologized that the belly dancer prominently advertised on the menu wasn't there anymore.)

She decided it might be a good time to leave Lebanon and try to get to the USA when a bullet went whizzing through the windows of her daughter's school bus. I asked her what the buzz was from phone calls back home. She didn't have very optimistic things to say about the internal and regional situation.

I made a grand speech blaming all the region's troubles on the European colonial powers -- France, Britain -- and the Big Fucking Mess they left behind.

She nodded, but said:

"Listen, when your mother-in-law keeps causing trouble in your marriage and won't stop, whose fault is it if you let her keep doing it?"

This isn't the way I want more delicious food from around the world in my town. Year after year, the inability to stop war and violence and human-rights atrocities all over the planet makes Main Street blossom with more and more delicious restaurants.

I remembered the Egyptian restaurant owner in MiddleEastStraat in Amsterdam, who pointed across the street at an Israeli restaurant, and said:

"We don't all love each other. But we both came here because here, our kids don't have to kill each other every 20 years."


Abbas Halai said...

since you're insisting on a guesstimate, i'm assuming it's one of the qul's. qul huwallaho ahad, qul awoozo birabil falaq, or qul awoozo birabin naas. most likely, the first guess since it reads allah and the starting of ahad in the second word right after (arabic is read right to left). but then again, it's just a guess. you would probably be able to google them as sura ikhlas, sura falaq or sura nas.

after sura fatiha, these three are hammered into every muslim kids brain without them ever realizing what any of it means.

Tuesday, 18 September, 2007

Steve Klein said...

The Hebrew is "Gush Hashish," which I guess means "Hashish Block." (Not block in the sense of "a big chunk of something,' but as in 'a group of things.')

The banner you saw might have been from this organization.

Now, where's my kosher pizza?

Wednesday, 19 September, 2007

Vleeptron Dude said...

Hmmm, I very arrogantly assumed the Qur'an puzzle would be a very straightforward walk in the park, but abbas is giving me his guesses in transliterated Arabic, and the Answer on the Dubai guy's website was something like 12.13 ... the Sura and Aya numbers. So kindly be patient while I try to translate one system about which I am totally ignorant into another system about which I am totally ignorant.

I *really* need to get a better grip on Arabic. I guess I'm just embarrassed to go to the many kindergarten-level intro websites (some that speak each sound when you press the letter or word) with my Luke Skywalker lunchbox.

STEVE THE IT GUY FROM the USA state shaped like the palm of the right hand (sorry about the Appalachian game, guy) wins the Hebrew Pizza! My new tatt says GUSH HASHISH.

Gush Hashish is a sort of Merry Prankster offshoot/affiliate of that Green Leaf Party. The joke in their name is that Gush Shalom is a very well known (if numerically insignificant) political party in Israel, muy peacenik/shalomnik/lefty. So yeah, Gush means Bloc, but what its original/Biblical Hebrew meaning was ... well, remember, you are talking to Huckleberry Finnstein here.

I guess there's a second pun to Gush Hashish -- block of hash, bloc of hash lovers.

The government can laugh off the colorful antics of the Gush Hashish fringies, but they have to pay more attention to the Green Leaf party, which is not clownish, and blends its pro-cannabis message with a very serious and popular Environmental platform. You don't want these people on your back, you have to toss them a compromise or two.

I'll be cruising back to AA eventually, you pick the pizzeria, I'll buy.

As mentioned, Bekaa Valley Lebanese Hashish is the centerpiece of the NGO Vleeptron / moNGO Middle East Peace Plan.

Laugh all you want -- but how much worse could my plan be than the Roadmap? Condoleezza Rice is in Israel again to wave her magic wand and bring Shalom/Salaam to the region. Uh-huh.

Oh, the Arabic origin ... this was the stuff the famous ancient order of the Assassins -- the Hashasheen -- used to party with when they weren't off on an assassination job. I'm pretty sure the Hashasheen were from what's now Lebanon, and the Bekaa agricultural fields were already in full flower.