Weblog Archives




  Saturday   October 29   2005


The X-Ray Art of Photographer Don Dudenbostel


I came across this site of x-ray art from a post at Rangefinder Forum. He had x-rayed his Leica IIIc.



 11:47 PM - link

where did america go?

The American Experiment, Really?

What have we come to?

A hyper-militarized and arch-violent nation where 100 million people -- one third of the US population -- are directly or indirectly related to the military and countless law enforcement agencies, spending on death and destruction more than the remaining of the entire world; a self-indulgent nation of buccaneers drowning in consumerism and waste without any regard for the consequences wreaked on the environment and the rest of humanity; a pitiful land gripped by fear and insecurity; a human construct based on a mixture of savage social Darwinism, an irrational, deeply conservative (in the reactionary sense), religiosity, and an absurd (and groundless) belief in an innate, god-given Goodness; and the slow but unrelenting "Third-Worldization" of the social and economic fabric of the country where even hope has been hijacked and raped. In brief, a deluded people in unreserved denial of the damages and destructions they inflict upon themselves and the world.

Rejoinder: We are the chosen people. Doing god's work is hard work.


  thanks to wood s lot

Scott Ritter and Seymour Hersh: Iraq Confidential

MR. HERSH: What I'm going to do is just ask Scott a series of questions. I've read his book a couple of times, and basically we're going to try to have some fun. Consider Scott and I your little orchestra playing on the deck of the Titanic as it goes down, because we're all in grave trouble here. So, Scott, to begin, before we even talk about how we got to where we are, my own personal view is we have two options in Iraq. Option A, we can get all our troops out by midnight tonight, and option B, we can get them all out by tomorrow night at midnight. And so I wonder where you sit on that, what's your view?

MR. RITTER: Well, I view that Iraq is a nation that's on fire. There's a horrific problem that faces not only the people of Iraq but the United States and the entire world. And the fuel that feeds that fire is the presence of American and British troops. This is widely acknowledged by the very generals that are in charge of the military action in Iraq. So the best way to put out the fire is to separate the fuel from the flame. So I'm a big proponent of bringing the troops home as soon as possible.

Today's the best day we're going to have in Iraq. Tomorrow's going to be worse, and the day after that's going to be even worse. But we also have to recognize that one of the reasons why we didn't move to Baghdad in 1991 to take out Saddam was that there was wide recognition that if you get rid of Saddam and you don't have a good idea of what's going to take his place, that Iraq will devolve into chaos and anarchy. Well, we've done just that. We got rid of Saddam, and we have no clue what was going to take his place. And pulling the troops out is only half of the problem.


  thanks to Antiwar.com

 11:36 PM - link


Zoe turned me on to Bruce Campbell. Bruce is a B movie actor who is having way too much fun. Not only was he seen in multiple Zena and Hercules episodes but starred in such great low budget B movies such as "Evil Dead" and "Army of Darkness". He has also shown up in bit parts in movies like Spider Man since Sam Raimi is a good friend and collaborator of his. I would never miss a Bruce Campbell movie. They are too much fun. His new one is also great fun but goes in some different places.

Bubba Ho-Tep

We find the King (Bruce Campbell) as an elderly resident in an East Texas rest home, who switched identities with an Elvis impersonator years before his “death”, then missed his chance to switch back. Elvis teams up with Jack (Ossie Davis), a fellow nursing home resident who thinks that he is actually President John F. Kennedy, and the two valiant old codgers sally forth to battle an evil Egyptian entity who has chosen their long-term care facility as his happy hunting grounds…


Old people as heros. Not to be missed.

 11:16 PM - link


The 2,000 American soldiers killed in Iraq


  thanks to Eschaton

 10:56 PM - link


This is Beautiful


  thanks to Conscientious

 10:51 PM - link


Doubts Raised on Saudi Vow for More Oil

Last spring, the White House publicly embraced plans by Saudi Arabia to increase its oil production capacity significantly. But privately, some officials and others advising the government are skeptical about some of those Saudi forecasts.

The United States relies on a few producers to maintain enough spare capacity to keep prices and markets stable, even during war or disaster. As oil prices have climbed over the last few years amid surging demand and tight supplies, the Bush administration has looked to the Persian Gulf countries, particularly Saudi Arabia, to pump extra oil.

But doubts about Saudi Arabia's assurances of how much it can expand capacity - and for how long - have been raised in a secret intelligence report and in a separate analysis by a leading government oil adviser, according to a federal government official and the oil expert.

If those skeptical assessments are correct, the administration's hopes of increasing supplies would become still more difficult to fulfill. Washington's expectations about oil production from Iraq and the United Arab Emirates have proved overly optimistic, and the White House has failed to heed advice about both those countries from industry and government specialists, according to documents and interviews.


 10:44 PM - link

book art

Children's Books Online


  thanks to The Cartoonist

Digitale Bibliothek > Kinderbücher

  thanks to The Cartoonist

International Children's Digital Library

  thanks to The Cartoonist

 10:40 PM - link


Syria: The Next Iraq

But the news from Syria shows that the conventional wisdom is wrong. The United States is indeed pursuing a hard-edged regime change strategy for Syria. It’s happening right before your eyes. With the ever-complacent U.S. media itself bogged down in Iraq, and with the supine U.S. Congress unwilling to challenge our foreign policy apparatus, Syria is under the gun. As in Iraq, the United States is aggressively pursuing a regime change there without the slightest notion of what might come next or who might replace President Bashar Assad. Might it be the fanatical Muslim Brotherhood, by far the most powerful single force in largely Sunni Syria? Might the country fragment into pieces, as Iraq is now doing? The Bush administration doesn’t know, just as they didn’t know what might happen to Iraq in 2003. But they are going ahead anyway.


  thanks to Tomdispatch.com

 10:26 PM - link

paper models

Cute paper models. Click the link under the "B" in the banner for more.

Booon! City


  thanks to Coudal Partners

 10:22 PM - link


Hating Suburbia

Having directed so much of our post-war wealth to constructing the infrastructures of suburban everyday life, we are now trapped in a psychology of previous investment that makes it impossible for us to imagine letting go of it. This is expressed in Dick Cheney's tragic phrase that the American way of life is non-negotiable. Now, circumstances will negotiate it for us.


 10:11 PM - link

zen for the day

6. No Loving-Kindness

There was an old woman in China who had supported a monk for over twenty years. She had built a little hut for him and fed him while he was meditating. Finally she wondered just what progress he had made in all this time.

To find out, she obtained the help of a girl rich in desire. "Go and embrace him," she told her, "and then ask him suddenly: 'What now?'"

The girl called upon the monk and without much ado caressed him, asking him what he was going to do about it.

"An old tree grows on a cold rock in winter," replied the monk somewhat poetically. "Nowhere is there any warmth."

The girl returned and related what he had said.

"To think I fed that fellow for twenty years!" exclaimed the old woman in anger. "He showed no consideration for your need, no disposition to explain your condition. He need not have responded to passion, but at least he should have evidenced some compassion."

She at once went to the hut of the monk and burned it down.


from Zen Flesh, Zen Bones

 10:05 PM - link

  Wednesday   October 26   2005


It appears that a the chickens are finally coming home to roost. It will be a pretty historic occasion if Libby and Rove are indicted.

Indictments Coming Tomorrow; Targets Received Letters Today

An uber-insider source has just reported the following to TWN (since confirmed by another independent source):

1. 1-5 indictments are being issued. The source feels that it will be towards the higher end.

2. The targets of indictment have already received their letters.

3. The indictments will be sealed indictments and "filed" tomorrow.

4. A press conference is being scheduled for Thursday.

The shoe is dropping.

More soon.


Plamegate: Worse than Watergate

If Rove and Libby are indeed indicted (adding Cheney to our Merry Fitz-mas gift list would just be getting greedy), I believe it will shake up our government in a way we haven't seen since Watergate.

To borrow a phrase from that era, let me make myself perfectly clear: I'm not saying that Plamegate is the same as Watergate. I'm saying it's worse. Much, much worse. No one died as a result of Watergate, but 2,000 American soldiers have now been killed and thousands more wounded to rid the world of an imminent threat that wasn't.

Could there be anything bigger?

After getting a fumbling cipher like George W. Bush elected president, the powers-behind-the-throne must have believed they were untouchable and could get away with anything -- including lying about WMD, outing a CIA agent, and, perhaps, lying to a special prosecutor.

Like Nixon, their mindset was "if you try to get in our way we'll destroy you." (See how quickly those keep-us-safe national security guys were willing to jeopardize an intelligence asset in the name of covering their asses.) And their hubris caused them to over-reach.

Like my old Greek pal Icarus, they flew too close to the sun... and now it looks like they, and their multitude of lies, are about to come crashing down.


 09:03 AM - link

family photos

My 6 year old grandson Mike dropped by last week. Zoe took some great pictures.

Bonus! Two days seeing Mike


 08:51 AM - link

rosa parks 1913 ― 2005

World Shaker


Rosa Parks, 92, Founding Symbol of Civil Rights Movement, Dies

Rosa Parks, a black seamstress whose refusal to relinquish her seat to a white man on a city bus in Montgomery, Ala., almost 50 years ago grew into a mythic event that helped touch off the civil rights movement of the 1950's and 1960's, died yesterday at her home in Detroit. She was 92 years old.

For her act of defiance, Mrs. Parks was arrested, convicted of violating the segregation laws and fined $10, plus $4 in court fees. In response, blacks in Montgomery boycotted the buses for nearly 13 months while mounting a successful Supreme Court challenge to the Jim Crow law that enforced their second-class status on the public bus system.

The events that began on that bus in the winter of 1955 captivated the nation and transformed a 26-year-old preacher named Martin Luther King Jr. into a major civil rights leader. It was Dr. King, the new pastor of the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, who was drafted to head the Montgomery Improvement Association, the organization formed to direct the nascent civil rights struggle.

"Mrs. Parks's arrest was the precipitating factor rather than the cause of the protest," Dr. King wrote in his 1958 book, "Stride Toward Freedom. "The cause lay deep in the record of similar injustices."

Her act of civil disobedience, what seems a simple gesture of defiance so many years later, was in fact a dangerous, even reckless move in 1950's Alabama. In refusing to move, she risked legal sanction and perhaps even physical harm, but she also set into motion something far beyond the control of the city authorities. Mrs. Parks clarified for people far beyond Montgomery the cruelty and humiliation inherent in the laws and customs of segregation.


 08:49 AM - link

  Tuesday   October 25   2005


Colour Book of Nonsense 1870


  thanks to The Cartoonist

 11:14 PM - link


2000 dead
by Steve Gillliard

The 2,000th American solider has been killed in Iraq.

2000 dead and we're losing.

No one will enlist.

Soldiers are facing their third tour.

Most Americans oppose the war.

Yet, they talk of a ten year commitment.

With who's children? The Bush clan?


The Army is now running a series of horrid comnmercials where kids, black kids talk to the parents about all the fun things they can do in the military.

Truck convoys to Ramadi and patrols around Baghdad are not included.

Losing your leg is not included.

Having them make you a new skull isn't included.

Being told there is no money for college isn't included.

Watching your friends die in your arms isn't included.

2000 tragedies, 2000 lives cut short, 2000 families ruined.

For what?


One of Papa Bush's advisors, who said don't invade Iraq before the idiot Bush invaded Iraq, slams the idiot Bush in the latest New Yorker. You will have to buy the magazine but here are the highlights:

Brent Scowcroft "Breaks Ranks" with George W. Bush in Major New Yorker Article

A principal reason that the Bush Administration gave no thought to unseating Saddam was that Brent Scowcroft gave no thought to it. An American occupation of Iraq would be politically and militarily untenable, Scowcroft told Bush. And though the President had employed the rhetoric of moral necessity to make the case for war, Scowcroft said, he would not let his feelings about good and evil dictate the advice he gave the President.

It would have been no problem for America's military to reach Baghdad, he said. The problems would have arisen when the Army entered the Iraqi capital. "At the minimum, we'd be an occupier in a hostile land," he said. "Our forces would be sniped at by guerrillas, and, once we were there, how would we get out? What would be the rationale for leaving? I don't like the term 'exit strategy' -- but what do you do with Iraq once you own it?"


  thanks to Hullabaloo

 11:05 PM - link


World War I Color Photos

World War I.... who would have thought there were original color photos of WWI? This site contains hundreds of photos taken by the French in the last two years of World War One.


  thanks to RangefinderForum.com

 10:43 PM - link

"Building like maniacs"
Israel is redrawing its borders inside Palestinian territories to secure all of Jerusalem and put the issue beyond negotiation.

At the northern edge of Jerusalem, on the main road to the Palestinian city of Ramallah, three towering concrete walls are converging around a rapidly built maze of cages, turnstiles and bombproof rooms.

When construction at Qalandiya is completed in the coming weeks, the remaining gaps in the 26-foot (eight-meter) walls will close and those still permitted to travel between the two cities will be channeled through a warren of identity and security checks reminiscent of an international frontier.

The Israeli military built the crossing without fanfare over recent months, along with other similar posts along the length of the vast new "security barrier" that is enveloping Jerusalem, while the world's attention was focused on Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's removal of Jewish settlers from the Gaza Strip.

But these de facto border posts are just one element in a web of construction evidently intended to redraw Israel's borders deep inside the Palestinian territories and secure all of Jerusalem as Israel's capital, and to do it fast so as to put the whole issue beyond negotiation. As foreign leaders, including Tony Blair, praised Sharon for his "courage" in pulling out of Gaza last month, Israel was accelerating construction of the West Bank barrier, expropriating more land in the West Bank than it was surrendering in Gaza, and building thousands of new homes in Jewish settlements.

"It's a trade-off: the Gaza Strip for the settlement blocks; the Gaza Strip for Palestinian land; the Gaza Strip for unilaterally imposing borders," said Dror Etkes, director of the Israeli organization Settlement Watch. "They don't know how long they've got. That's why they're building like maniacs."


  thanks to Aron's Israel Peace Weblog

 10:39 PM - link

simulated transportation

model railroad


  thanks to J-Walk Blog

 10:26 PM - link

  Monday   October 24   2005

give us this day our daily image

A blueberry muffin listens in on the conversation at the next table


gordy's image archive index

This is the last image from this roll. Now I have a roll of color Fuji Reala loaded for more pinholes.

 02:47 PM - link