Friday, May 28, 2004

Google: Post-Feminist Icon Posted by Hello

Google: Beauty Posted by Hello

Thursday, May 27, 2004

Project for the New American Century

This group just gets better and better!

Am reading an interesting article about the some ideas I heard on NPR yesterday, that basically our current government's plans had been set up for years. Within the 'manifesto' of the New American Century Project, a group devoted to furthering "a defense budget that would maintain American security and advance American interests in the new century". And who exactly are members or were, of this little group? cheney, dumsfeld, wolwofitz, you name it, they were there in the late 1990's, criticizing Clinton, and laying the groudplans for a new future, there future. And look who is in power now! And how exactly would there plans be omplemented, in their controversy and clearly one-sided dominance of American policy? Through a 'cataclismic event' that would rally Americans to their cause. Enter September the 11th. Enter the implementation of the New Century. It could'nt have happened any better. And what exactly is meant by futhering American interests? Economic interests of course, and where do the majority of our economic interests lie? Thats right, in oil! Quel Surprize! The Dark Clouds get more and more gloomy...

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Ok. One more thought about mr. Hamill. It disturbs me that he stated twice that he stripped off his shirt so that the soldiers could see that he was 'white'. That is my main problem with the story and the whole war in general. Does it always come down to color and money, and war?

The Story of Thomas Hamill: The Great Escape

Tonight on Dateline NBC is the story of the man who escaped from Iraqi militia. The intro began with a brief synopsis of his story and a few bits about his faith, his family and his will to survive and come home. Why am I ambivalent about this story? Because he wasnt a soldier. He chose to go to Iraq because of his patriotism and financial seucirty of his family, isnt that interesting. April 9th, his convoy was attacked. An Australian media crew caught the aftermath, caught Mr. Hamill, he was in the back of their car.

Faith in god.

How did he end up in Iraq, from Mississippi? A dairy farmer in dire straights, who wanted to keep struggling. A job offer to drive a truck for Kellogg-Brown and Root, a subsidiary of Halliburton no less, but he also wanted to help his country. He was proud of mr. bush for going over there. His wife says that tahe man 'makes the decisions and the wife stands behind him'. I find this hard to believe, I mean, a man who needed money, down on his luck, and he's captured and hes a hero?? He says that he had to go back, to deliver fuel to American troops? companies? Probbaly both.
He was to be paid $70,000, I guess that was worth it. I am sprry, but this man is speaking of honor and duty, but he wasnt ordered to go to Iraq, he CHOSe to go, even though he new the risks. And why did he go? MOney, what is more American than that.

Whatever happened/happens to him is his Choice.

Monday, May 24, 2004 - Bush´┐Żoutlines Iraq transition - May 24, 2004

The Fallacy of American Nation Building

Perhaps the most perplexing issue I have with our nations attempts to 'build democracies' is that we have only one democratic point of view, our own history, yet when we set about rebuilding a nation into a democracy, we set up a grad, egalitairan democratic form that is dommed form the start. Case in point, specific point sthat have been (some of the few) made public about the Iraqi constitution, namely the points that guarantee all major ethinic groups and minorities (inlcuding women), a percenateg of seats. Would'nt that be great here in the US? I mean, no major group of anyone except white men are in accordance currently, i think raising the percentages to get more people involved would be great. Why this is bad n Iraq: if anyone has proven that forced integration, forced involvement, forced anything, never works, let alone when you factor in forced democracy, it is US. I mean, we have a failry undemocratic democracy when it comes to elections, and yet we are supposed to be setting up, no, scratch that, building from rubble a 'democracy' that is modelled after no other functional democracy on earth in a fomer dictatorial nation, wth our military, nonethless. SO you see my point. It is about power, not about freedom. If we truly wanted Iraq to be a free domcracy, we would have to let them follow a path similar to ours. IE:

- Invade, deatroy, and leave (we have two out of three already)
- Let national leaders draw up their own form of government (which will inevitably fail, like the loose federation under the Articles of Confederation)
- From the ashes of group infighting will come together o new form of leaders to envision a nation built upon certain principles, the meet, discuss, decide, then go back to the people with their ideas for more discussion and voting
- once they have some agreement, a coalition forms, a proto-nation, with a pseudo-government that learns as it grows
- sprinkle these events over several decades, the add another 150 years, and BOOM! You might have another America!

That is the true fallacy of nation-building: attempting the frce two hundred yeard of democratic evolution down the throats of the Iraqi people with a 'father knows best, we'll take all your natural resources and privatize your industries" American attitude. Imagine where we would be if WE had been formed on such an anvil!

Saturday, May 22, 2004

Cob house project: cob decoration below window Posted by Hello

Cob house project: Kitchen window Posted by Hello

Building using cob :: :: sustainable building environments and sculpture

I came across this while searching for infomration on cob, an alternative building source that I worked with last June. IN connection with a spiritual and alternative mindset, my class set out to continue a cob house strutcure that had been begun the previous summer. After a semester-long class the preceding spring, in which we discussed structures in general and the spiritual nature of dwellings, we commenced building in June of 2003, for a month. The building basics and cob creation were taught to us by a man who had been to many cob workshops and was an avid architectural and constructional participant. Our textual basics for our class were The Timeless Way of Building series. It was a remarkable experience.

this is an audio post - click to play

Isn't that the Truth! Posted by Hello

Gramsci is a god Posted by Hello

Friday, May 21, 2004

The American Nightmare

How Pertinent.
I regret that I have, just now, stumbled upon the works of Daniel Singer, by way of The Nation. I am reading an article he wrot ein 1970 about the evils and goodness of America, a schizophrenic entity that somehow ensnares, blinds, rules, and coonquers, in spite of itself. I can think of no other time than the present in which these words wring more true, some thirty-four years later.

"The salesmen of the American dream, and they are legion in Europe, prefer to bypass this role of international gendarme, or to justify it in terms of domestic achievement. They point to the 'democratic niceties', to the 'civil liberties' the United States can still afford. They stress even more the 'economic achievement', the 'technological lead', the intellectual investment that vast accumulation has rendered possible, the level of research and management, the high productivity--in short, the superior wealth of the nation; and they turn to the young revolutionaries with the rhetorical question: Can you dismiss the American model in spite of all this?(is This not Thee Question??) The answer is not in spite of it but because of it. The most frightening prospect, the American nightmare, is that with so much wealth man should not be able to build a different kind of society. In fact, the Europeans are merely echoing the indictment of America's New Left which, instead of being dazzled by the moon, points to the dark side of American society; its inequality and racism, its collective poverty and private plenty, its derelict health services, its belated discovery of pollution and urban chaos--and to the system responsible for it all.

Wow. Can you dimiss the whole because of one of its parts? In Singer's view, socialism is the human inevitability, and I would agree, the problem is that far too many people in America, through historical misleads or ignorance, believe that socialiasm will always be evil and wrong, because of bad parts, not the true whole. Its the rotten egg out of the whole basket.
Example: Typical American
Hey, would'nt you like affordable, universal healthcare in America??
Yeah, I suppose.
Then would'nt you support a more socialist approach to American policies, ones that focus on the people instead of the money?
Whoa, wait a minute, did you say 'Socialist approach'?
Why, yes I did, its the wave of the future, it would bring all citizens together for a common, just cause: the fundemental right to live.
I'm NOT a COMMUNIST!! If you're so Anti-American, then why don't you just leave!!

See the inherent dilemma.

Ira Glass's Topic

Sometimes i wished that I smoked, or did hard drugs, insetad of walking listlessly back forth from the fridge, wanting there to be an answer inside; no, an antedote. Instead there is just left overs, or cheese, or some other indulgence too close to bed time. But then i close the door, walk back to my computer, and return to my typing, empty handed. Until a few minutes later, with the size of my stomach outhinking (possibly outwitting?) my brain, and i get up again to search through a cupborad or the fridge again. Cigarettes and drugs woll kill you ,they say, but so will food, only it take thirty or forty years, if you're lucky, kind of like asbestos. Here I go again.

Thursday, May 20, 2004

One more, I promise. I again Could not resist reposting this from my exeperiecne at the March for Womens Lives in DC. It was amazing!

'we are at ground-zero of the feminist revolution...' - Ani
Well. I wanted to wait a bit before writing down my impressions of the past weekend, beyond jotted notes. I suppose I should start from the end and work my way back, so to speak. I didnt go to work on monday, on account of getting home at 3 am and being fairly sleep deprived, used that as an ample excuse. When i woke up I was in a cloud. I felt like I was still there, on the Mall, listening, discussing, marching, Participating!. The emotions were still so high, they still are. Work today was ok, but all I wanted to do was talk to someone about my experience and no one cared, I mean, the opportunity didnt arise until the very end of the day when I mentioned that I had been at the march for womens lives to my female boss and co-worker. They chuckled, nearly laughed, at me. Like, 'why would you have been There?' So that was mildly dissappointing, be I digress. The trip back didnt seem that long, tho it was, because of the after glow, I suppose. melly and heather rule the highways! sunday morning heather and I got up early (she had stayed with my at my cousins the night before) and struck out around 8am to see some of the sights before too many people got there. When we arrived we were confronted by the volunteers and workers who were already in full swing, handing out stickers and signs by the handfuls, it was great! We were unhappy before this because of our lack of "Fem Bling! We walked around, showed her the capital, smithsonisn, which wasnt open at the time, and ended up at the smithsonian castle which was open, where we got some coffee and a biscotti, which we then ate in the tulip garden in back of the castle, tres bien. When we made our way back onto the mall many more people had already arrived for the 10 am rally before the 12:30-ish march. we strolled back to the metro to meet up with mel and gina, having covered half of the mall on foot already. The amount of people streaming out of the metro was ENORMOUS, I mean, the streamed out and onto the mall at a constant rate for like 40 mins! The second speaker I heard was gwendolyn mink, whose book i read in kates class two years ago, it was about feminist theory and welfare deform, which she actually said! it was fabulous! So we basically wandered around, reading everyones signs and listening to the speakers, whom we were close enough to see on stage. Then around 12:30 we took off on the march, which, IO am sure for security sake, didnt go that close to the WH, for obvious reasons I suppose. But you could see it and i think heather got a good pic. Going along, shouting our slogans, waving our signs, it was all amazing! the pro-lifers were out but not in huge numbers. What I loved most was the fact that some of them had bullhorns and were shouting at us but when we goit close we started chanting or singing and COMPLETELY drowned them out! it was great!! most of them were so morose (big surprise since they were standing next to dead baby pictures) and non involved, they suck. sorry that wasnt very polite or PC, they are politically ignorant and culturally backward, there. The walk was energizing and when we got back to the Mall they had more speakers and music, like the Indigo girls, but i dont know if Ani performed, but i missed it :( gloria steinum was ther and she looks great for being 70! bunch or actresses, including julianne moore and ashley judd, and whoopi. the most random appearance award gies to .....Ted turner? we were all like, what the fuck? when he was called up on stage. ok, so ted turner was bascially like, im ted turner, im pro-choice, and im a great philanthropist. basically, he was a tool. afterward i wondered if maybe his wifey, way more active Jane fonda, couldnt make it so he stepped in. anywho, he was still a tool.

Participate, get involved, BE DEMOCRACY!

Well I could'nt leave well wnough alobe, so here is another poached entry from my other blog. It pertains to the Iraqi prison abuse investigations that were held on Capital Hill this week. Here is an excerpt of mr. rumsfelds Q&A (paraphrased of course):

Question: Mr. Rumselfd, when did you first know of the investigations of abuse of iraqi prisoners?

Answer: Ummm... when the initial report cam out in january.

Question: what, if any actions did you take when you heard of these allegations and when did you tell the president about them?

Answer: i didnt tell the president.
(line of questioning ends before more 'complete' answer, moves on to next senator)

question: When did you learn of the graphic pictures of purported abuse last week on 60 Minutes? When did the presdient see them?

Answer: the president and i learned of these pictures when america did, that night on 60 minutes...

ok. so these few snippetts, and yes, i paraphrased, basically confirmed several suspisions: bushie is told practically nothing of importance until everyone else does, and/or doesnt act on them. second, the military, which has been plagued with issues forever, really needs and overhaul, and third, when pressed, dumsfeld basically apologized for the pictures coming out and regretted the harm it could do to our mission. OUR MISSION? how about those people, or tyring to cover it up by asking CBS to hold airing the story for several weeks? no no. he was sorry we ever found out, hes sorry that it has come to our attention and that we demand to hold him accountable. not to generalize or stereotype too much, but in my expereince of living and my study of this stuff, republicans overwhelmingly regret or apologize for scandals or incidents because they were leaked to you and I, and not for perpetrating them in the first please! gee makes me feel all cold and hollow inside.

Wow, blogger has improved considerably, I think. I have been completely neglecting this blog, and have only been using my other blog for friend stuff. BLah. Here is to getting back on the true blogger trail...

Is it ironic?
I am listening to npr and a report on letters written to Pres. Eisenhower after the Brown V. Board of Education decision. Some are horrible, proclaiming the high disease rate, filth, and low morals that african-americans had, and why de-segregation was such a bad idea and the end of our civilization. Strange, but an hour before this, there was a report on the marriages in Massachusetts (Yeah Massachusetts!), and the arguments against them, the arguments by the 'moralists' are so similar its scary. I am sure npr set it up so that a comparison could be easily made, which is a prime reason why i love npr. So i get a bit emoitional listening to the report on the marriages, and hearing the men and women speaking their vows...its amazing what people can do when they protest, fight the system. 50 years and we are still fighting prejucice and glass ceilings, I only wonder where the marriage argument will be in 5o years? Perhaps massachusetts will herald the destruction of our imperfect society and planet, like desegregation was supposed to do. at least then we will know! I hope that in 50 years, the 100th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Ed and the 50th anniversary of gay marriage in massachusetts will be remembered with an historical nostalgia ad honor, instead of an eye on an ongoing struggle. Heres to hope.

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