San Francisco's Start Soma Gallery is the launchpoint for Start Propaganda, a traveling exhibition of political art by some 300 international artists. Sometimes outrageous (beware the poster showing the severed head of a suicide bomber), occasionally poetic, it's a rather wonderful trip through the diverse world of free speech. Once the multi-city tour ends, the posters will be donated to the Center for the Study of Political Graphics in Los Angeles. See the assembled artworks here.
Via Visual Resistance.
And Consumerist writes that Honda has developed a non-hybrid Accord that gets over 62 miles per gallon. The cars, which use a new generation of diesel engines, should be available for purchase in the US by 2010.
Apparently nobody informed these idiots that happy motoring is not a sustainable activity, and neither is the parking that necessarily attends it. This is apart from the sheer appalling monumental ugliness of the building. The official PR handout is a prime example of how America is blowing green smoke up its own ass.The release says the solar panels will pay for themselves in 17 years. JHK's reply: "Ground control to Santa Monica: in 17 years the automobile age will be over."
Greg Allen finds a surprisingly under-visited Flickr set showing the making of Damien Hirst's headline-grabbing, diamond-encrusted skull. The piece, For the Love of God (2007), is expected to sell for around $100 million -- but, so far, hasn't. For more images, see Supertouch.
Last week the Telegraph told its readers not to abandon the fight to save the planet. "There is still hope, and the middle classes, with their composters and eco-gadgets, will be leading the way." It made some helpful suggestions, such as a "hydrogen-powered model racing car", which, for £74.99, comes with a solar panel, an electrolyser and a fuel cell. God knows what rare metals and energy-intensive processes were used to manufacture it. In the name of environmental consciousness, we have simply created new opportunities for surplus capital.
Ethical shopping is in danger of becoming another signifier of social status. I have met people who have bought solar panels and wind turbines before they have insulated their lofts, partly because they love gadgets but partly, I suspect, because everyone can then see how conscientious and how rich they are. We are often told that buying such products encourages us to think more widely about environmental challenges, but it is just as likely to be depoliticising. Green consumerism is another form of atomisation - a substitute for collective action. No political challenge can be met by shopping.
The middle classes rebrand their lives, congratulate themselves on going green, and carry on buying and flying as much as before. It is easy to picture a situation in which the whole world religiously buys green products and its carbon emissions continue to soar.
New bicycle racks have been ordered for Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, but here's the catch:
It's illegal to ride your bike to or from the Lindbergh terminal.
Stephan Orsak, a professional violinist from Mahtomedi, found that out last September. The cyclist's confrontation with two airport police officers culminated with a Taser blast and propelled him into a jury trial that ended last week.
Orsak, 50, sees his arrest as an attack on his civil liberties.
Orsak faced six misdemeanor charges ranging from obstructing legal process to failing to obey a traffic control signal. The traffic signal count was dropped, and on Friday a jury acquitted him of all but one count of failing to obey a lawful order from an officer, according to court records.
Orsak had returned home to the Twin Cities from California, unfolded his 21-pound bicycle and was pedaling along an airport road when two officers told him to stop.
The criminal complaint describes Orsak as using foul language and says he ignored police instructions before he was zapped with the Taser. Orsak says the behavior that got him into trouble was asking questions of officers about the airport's rules about bikes... Allowing bikes on the terminal's roads would be unsafe because of traffic merging from both sides and drivers looking up to read signs, Hogan said. And the main road dumps traffic out onto a stretch of Hwy. 5 that's a freeway.
Hogan says the airport doesn't really have any plans to change its bike access. The airport is out of room, he said, and "we have not had demand" for bicycle facilities. He noted that the airport used to have bike racks years ago but took them out because of lack of use.
After airport security chopped up a bicycle that was left chained inside a terminal last year, the airport will install new bike racks next month. The one at the Lindbergh terminal will be placed at the transit center, where the light-rail entrance and bus stops are. Hogan encouraged bike riders to bike to the most convenient stop on the light-rail line and take the train the rest of the way.
The Humphrey terminal is accessible by city streets via Bloomington, so it can be reached on bike, and when the light-rail station at Humphrey reopens in September, bicyclists could ride from there to the Lindbergh terminal. Rail service between the two terminals is free.
Bicycling advocates would like to see a better connection.
"There are very few airports that are not bicycle-friendly, and this is one of them," says Steve Clark, who works for Transit for Livable Communities. "There's always a way" to give bikes access, he said -- a restriping of roadways, for example, to make inside lanes narrower and the curb lane wider.In Denver, where the airport is 23 miles from downtown, bike lanes run along a freeway linking the city to the terminal, said Chuck Cannon, an airport spokesman...
Since she came to the notice of the larger world in 2005 -- when she said she feared the "pacifists, the people who oppose nationalism in Japan [...] are gradually being silenced" -- I haven't heard of her. Does she still have a job? Is she still resisting?
One recent mention is a poem in her honor by Munihiko Ichino, translated by Tetsuro Tanaka, that's been added to the Union Song archives, excerpted here:
They fall in mountains on her.
But she's never frightened.
And she says "I'm a teacher.
I will never help destroy education even if they admonish me all they can"
You will remember a person standing in front of the gate
Facing the strongest power with a tender smile.
A 58-year-old woman is in an Auckland hospital with "life threatening" injuries after being hit by car as she left the city's Methodist Mission Church, 3 News reports.
The driver of the vehicle reportedly "deliberately drove" at the church after jumping several red lights at speed, narrowly missing several pedestrians. Witnesses report seeing the car approaching from a distance of half a kilometre on the wrong side of the road before accelerating towards its target.
The driver was "injured but conscious", and as police attempted to extricate him from his motor, he "clutched his laptop computer and screamed the name of Apple's CEO Steve Jobs". A fireman later told 3 News "he believed the man had a mental illness".
While Jesse Ventura hasn't said anything about running, some of his fans have started a draft-Ventura petition. Voters 4 Ventura already has over 300 signatures.
What if we were Life
Or the Pursuit of something new?
Between the rocks below
and the stars above
What if we were composed by Love?
And what if we could show
that what we dream
is deeper than what we know?
Suppose if something does not live
in the world
that we long to see
then we make it ourselves
as we want it to be
What if we are Life
and the Pursuit of something new?
And suppose the beautiful answer
asks the more beautiful question,
Why don't we get our hopes up too high?
What don't we get our hopes up to high?
This passage is from the 51st dream state, a music-theater-spoken word performance by Sekou Sundiata, the poet, writer, and educator who passed away this morning from heart failure at age 58. I sat in on an interview with Sekou (and choreographer Bill T. Jones) for the premiere of his piece at the Walker and found myself inspired by his mix of political engagement, humor, aesthetic rigor, and love for the Enlightenment ideals -- seemingly threatened in times like these -- that have made America great. His death is a big loss for art, and I send blessings to his family.
Sekou was diagnosed with kidney disease in 1995 and had a successful transplant, about which he made the work blessing the boats. Appropriately, donations in memory of Sekou may be made to the National Kidney Foundation at 30 E. 33rd Street, Suite 1100, New York NY 10016
What he should've said?
"Their healthcare is free the way our Iraq War is free."
Yes, we pay, but we're not constantly reminded we're paying.
In war, we should have a more direct connection to the realities of what we're underwriting. In healthcare, perhaps it's fine to just know it's there when we need it.
It is clear that there are many people in this country, including myself, who demand accountability from this Administration for the terrible mess it made in Iraq and its egregious and even illegal power grabs throughout its six-plus years in power. I believe that the President and Vice President may well have committed impeachable offenses. But with so many important issues facing this country and so much work to be done, I am concerned about the great deal of time multiple impeachment trials would take away from the Congress working on the problems of the country. The time it would take for the House to consider articles of impeachment, and for the Senate to conduct multiple trials, would make it very difficult, if not impossible, for Congress to do what it was elected to do – end the war and address some of the other terrible mistakes this Administration has made over the past six and a half years.
Today, Bush offers little more than a shrug of the shoulders in admitting that "somebody" on his staff outed a covert agent:
"I'm aware of the fact that perhaps somebody in the administration did disclose the name of that person," Bush said. "I've often thought about what would have happened if that person had come forth and said, 'I did it.' Would we have had this endless hours of investigation and a lot of money being spent on this matter? But, so, it's been a tough issue for a lot of people in the White House. It's run its course and now we're going to move on."
On a 28-0 margin, the Senate agreed to make it punishable by up to a year in jail to use the names of deceased soldiers to help sell goods. The measure, SB 1014, also would let families go to court to stop the sales and collect damages.
Dan Frazier, a Flagstaff businessman who is selling the T-shirts that have caused all the fuss, told Capitol Media Services he doesn't intend to halt the sale of the $20 shirts even if Gov. Janet Napolitano signs the measure. He said it's an illegal infringement on his First Amendment rights.
Rep. Jonathan Paton, R-Tucson, a backer of the measure, doesn't see it that way. He said because Frazier is selling his shirts for a profit means it is not constitutionally protected political speech.
But attorney Dan Barr said the question of whether someone makes money is legally irrelevant. "The fact that these people died in Iraq is nothing more than a fact," Barr said. And he said listing their names on a T-shirt -- whether sold or given away -- doesn't change that....
Street artist Posterchild takes on guerilla gardening in this project, in which flowerboxes filled with celosia plants were erected on telephone poles around Kensington Market in Toronto.
"This was a very serious sin in my past for which I am, of course, completely responsible," said Vitter, who co-authored the "Federal Marriage Act," which sought to prevent same-sex marriages. "Several years ago, I asked for and received forgiveness from God and my wife in confession and marriage counseling. Out of respect for my family, I will keep my discussion of the matter there-with God and them. But I certainly offer my deep and sincere apologies to all I have disappointed and let down in any way."
Or so says the profile at Par Excellence, a satirical blog written from the Star Tribune publisher's perspective.
The anonymously authored site features the words of "Par," whose writing voice is half clueless optimist, half sans-a-frat fratboy. "Yeah, Calhoun isn't top notch," he writes in a post about Vita.mn's reporting on a swimsuit show it sponsored at Calhoun Beach Club. "But still, hanging out by a pool and getting front row seats to watch swimsuit models kicks ass." In another, titled "Ganging up on me," he writes that if anybody -- including recent Ridder critics
And another cites Minnesota Monitor's reporting on Ridder's apparent purchase of the $2.76 million house once owned by former KARE-11 anchor Paul Magers. "It was Magers that added the golf simulator, not me," complains "Ridder."
With a more serious tone is the new website SavetheStrib.com. Run by the Star Tribune's unit of the Minnesota Newspaper Guild, the site features the tagline, "Preserving the role of the Star Tribune in our communitiy." Currently, little more than a home page, it'll eventually have news and bulletins sections. The home page features a statement, signed by Star Tribune employees and readers, decrying the cuts to the newsroom staff, the death of the paper's philanthropic foundation, and shrinking news holes for national and international news.
It seems to suggest a shift in strategy: don't mourn the loss of newsroom jobs; worry about the effect the cuts will mean for all of us -- the community (a word that appears eight times on the home page).
Before encouraging visitors to urge Avista to "make a new commitment to once again make the Star Tribune the great newspaper this community deserves," the site makes a prediction:
We recognize that this is a difficult time for newspapers. But we also believe that the current strategy of deep cuts will accelerate circulation declines and the downward spiral in the newspaper's revenue. It also erodes the checks and balances that a strong newspaper provides the public and our democracy.
Terrorist groups, like any organization, need brand identities. With so many groups claiming credit for terrorist acts, and so many videotapes being put out featuring men in ski masks, it’s hard to keep track of which group committed what violent act. So terrorist organizations have logos. It recently occurred to me that someone had to actually design those logos. But how did they decide who gets to do it? Did the job go to whichever terrorist had a copy of Adobe Illustrator?
Some groups are displeased, like the oil firm Baker Hughes, which makes the list even though it says it stopped doing business with Sudan two years ago. A glaring omission: Halliburton, Dick Cheney's old company, has for years done business with Iran through an off-shore subsidiary it set up in the Cayman Islands. It ceased operations in Iran in April 2007.
In looking over stacks of returned request letters, I noticed slight variations in the return-to-sender rubber stamps. How'd the pointing finger become the universal symbol for this? Isn't it a tad rude? I may be reading too much into it -- it's just an administrative stamp applied ad tedium by civil servants -- but in certain instances the accusatory finger seems fitting. A letter sent to Woody Allen came back neurotically marked up with triple fingers, deeply indented hashmarks, and (in case I missed the point) an all-caps notice that the forwarding order had EXPIRED. Another intended for Mr. T. came back unopened. His "I pity the foo'!" catchphrase was always delivered down the barrel of an outstretched index finger.
FOX 29 anchor/reporter Tom Burlington has been suspended by the station follow-ing what sources describe as a "bizarre" and "shocking" sermon in which he insisted there's nothing wrong with a word most commonly referred to as "the N-word."Via MediaChannel.
Burlington, according to colleagues, used the word more than a dozen times as he argued that doing so was not such a big deal.
The word wasn't directed at anyone, so colleagues were hestitant to label his remarks as racist, instead pointing toward Burlington's insensitivity and apparent lack of common sense.
Sources tell us that Burlington, who joined Fox 29 in 2004 and previously worked at NBC-10, offended staffers of all races with his remarks, and didn't know when to shut up, even after colleagues politely suggested he cool it. His comments took place in a news meeting after a discussion of a story about the NAACP Philadelphia Youth Council, which had held a mock funeral for the N-word at Dobbins High last Saturday.
Burlington argued that it was irresponsible to report about the word without using the word itself. Both the Daily News and the Inqwaster used the word in their stories on the issue.
A Fox 29 spokeswoman confirmed that Burlington had been suspended, but it would not comment on the reason for the suspension, or how long it would last. Burlington did not return messages we left on his work and cell phones Tuesday and yesterday.
People mistake her for a pitbull with a pinhead, but Wendy the whippet is one rare breed.
So rare that the Central Saanich dog recently graced the New York Times. She also had several of her photos shown on The Today Show, all because of a rare genetic mutation that has led to her being the Incredible Hulk of dogs......Wendy was recently part of a genetics study done in the U.S. on mutation in the myostatin gene in whippets, which resemble greyhounds in appearance. The National Institute of Health study reported that whippets with one single defective copy of the gene have increased muscle mass that can enhance racing performance in the breed, known for speeds up to 60 kilometres an hour.
But whippets with two mutated copies of the gene become "double-muscled," like Wendy. It has been seen before in one human, and also in mice, cattle and sheep, says the study.
• Less than a third of Americans can "identify DNA as a key to heredity."
• Approximately one in ten know what radiation is.
• "One adult American in five thinks the Sun revolves around the Earth, an idea science had abandoned by the 17th century."
"You would have to be dead to be unaffected by Moore's movie," he writes, later saying that SiCKO leaves audiences "ashamed to be...a capitalist, and part of a 'me' society instead of a 'we' society."
He's also concerned that, as the "market leader," Blue Cross will be affected by this film:
As a health care industry educated viewer it is easy to pick out where Moore is cultivating misperceptions to further a political agenda, but you will also recognize that 80%+ of the audience will have their perceptions substantially affected. In demonstration of its impact, an informal discussion group ensued outside the theatre after the movie. While some people recognized how one-sided the presentation was, most were incredulous and "I didn't know they (the insurers) did that!" was a common exclamation followed by a discussion of the example.
Skeleton #1: I once said (truthfully), "I listened to The Gin Blossoms before they were popular."
I probably said the same thing about the Dave Matthews Band.
Skeleton #2: In 7th grade, I lip-synched the song "Heavens On Fire" as a member of a mute, faux version of Animalize-era KISS in the St. Francis Cabrini Middle School gym. I cut the sleeves of a baseball shirt the long way to create a flouncy, Dee Snyderesque look while simultaneously unleashing my 13-year old pipes (that's biceps, ladies). I wore white Levi's, bleached in a 5-gallon white plastic pickle bucket in the garage. Using a permanent marker, I drew zebra stripes all over the pants. Stinky. To cap it off, I used as a prop the electric guitar I'd yet to learn to play -- a replica (read: knock-off) of Eddie Van Halen's red and white striped guitar. The nuns? Nonplussed.
Skeleton #3: I sang a White Lion song at a high school talent show, solo.
And I wore a pink sweater and acid-washed gray Levi's while I did it.
I Tag: Mark, André, Chuck, Hans, and Justin.