Sunday, January 29, 2006

Lothar von Versen


a possible(?) distant cousin, Lothar von Versen was kind enough to let me post this album cover of his. He also has an eponymous website, here.

On an unrelated matter-- some people have asked me, "what has become of Tookong? Why hasn't he posted in so long? I don't know. Although he is awfully busy.

Tookong says:Lollipops are tall and have good heads on their shoulders. M&Ms are capricious and live life by the seats of their thin candy shells.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Greetings from Denton, or it's all your fault

mike cochran

This is the comment I left at Jonathan Schwarz's "Aaron Brown Explains How It's All Our Fault", in which he discusses Aaron Brown scolding viewers for not watching the news, or something like that. It made me ponder the problem of How Irredeemably Cruddy US Teevee News Has Become. So I wrote:

I've thought about it, and I've come to the conclusion the problem is that news teevee is misusing their resources.

If we want better news teevee, instead of giving Nancy Grace her own show, we should pay her to go to everybody's house and scowl at them if they don't watch hi-falootin' tv that's good for you.

doorbell rings. Viewer opens the door.

Viewer: Aaaah!
Nancy Grace: Watch Bill Moyers.
Viewer: I don't think he's on any more.
Nancy G: I don't want to hear any guff.
Viewer: Yes ma'am.

It would take a while, but I know she'd get the job done.

Friday, January 27, 2006

Friday middle eastern pop star blogging: Nawal al Zoughbi revisited


at her website Nawal, al-Zee says that when she plays in Lebanon, the audience wants light-hearted and romantic songs, whereas in Egypt they prefer songs with more of a political bent, concerning themes of liberation.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Grant Wood and Rafal Malcezewski

Grant Wood the_Midnight_Ride_of_Paul_Revere_1931
The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere, 1931

placid life- rafal malcezewski- natl museum-warsawRZ
Placid Life, Rafal Malcezewski- National Museum, Warwaw

I don't know why these two paintings remind me of one another, but they do.

'75 pacer patrol car


Saturday, January 21, 2006

el aguador

el aguador alejandra villegas
el aguador(the waterman), alejandra villegas, 2000. from Art of Oaxaca.Com

Friday, January 20, 2006

IraqDoc 2007: an update

girl and soldier cbc-ca
via CBC

Paul Goyette of Locussolus asked me about IraqDoc 2007 the other day.

I posted briefly about my aims for the documentary on August 1st(see below). So far I've gotten 48 bucks(!) in donations. Well, one donation. I'm working on a short film, tentatively titled "Song of Denton, pt 1" on mini-DV which I mean to post as a downloadable file some time in February at a different URL.

1st mention of my intention to go to Iraq in the summer of 2007, here:
"The Road Ahead"

The purpose of the film is to talk to ordinary people in Iraq about their experiences, both before and during the war, and since. I would also like to also visit with social scientists in Iraq, not from US and European NGOs but from the local universities, and perhaps highlight work they've done about the effects of the war. I would also like to talk to imams and other non-Muslim religious leaders-- NOT the bigshots who get lots of press, but the equivalents of ordinary parish priests.

tank in canal usmc

Will it be possible for me to register as a nonprofit organization? I would like to, but find the prospect a bit daunting, and also wonder if my work would be dismissed as politically-motivated because of the blog(and because of the political climate), even though I don't think I've ever endorsed a candidate or a ballot initiative. It is my hope, perhaps a foolish one, to raise 30,000 bucks by 5/2007 and go for about 3 months. Obviously I need to step up the curve with respect to soliciting donations! I would go even with as little as 12,000 to 15,000 raised, as I believe much of the expenditure would be in post-production. To save money I may fly to Beirut and take the bus into Baghdad, as my understanding is there still is bus service, even though it's a long trip. (I thought of buying a cheap used car in Beirut or Jordan, but traveling by one's self is said to be very dangerous.)

But seriously. Look to your right. My Paypal and Amazon accounts will take donations for as little as five or ten bucks, and I'm not too proud to ask for that, so I'm asking. I have approximately 515 days left, so I only need to raise about 23 bucks a day to get to 12 grand, or 58/day to get to 30 grand, so this is very much within the realm of possibility. At least tell people you know who might like to help.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Jill Carroll

jill carroll-via al jazeera

This is the most popular link regarding kidnapped Christian Science Monitor Jill Carroll.

they mention "River", at Baghdad Burning, who knew her translator, and writes about him (here).

And, from The Christian Science Monitor's update page about Carroll, here:

"Ordinary Iraqis bear brunt of war" 15 April 2005: Mike says, "Jill was passionate about this story, one of the first she filed for us. For her, it was one of the most important to tell about the war in Iraq. And this particular piece led to an outpouring of financial contributions for Zeinab Yasseen and her family from Monitor readers. It was one of those pieces that made an immediate difference." "Old brutality among new Iraqi forces" 4 May 2005: "Long before revelations of secret prisons in Iraq's Ministry of Interior, Jill was reporting on allegations of increasing brutality within some the country's security forces," says Mike. "It was her ability to find trusting sources that put her on the leading edge of this important story."

I hope that she is going to be ok. The attention that this particular kidnapping has generated, as well as the request for a temporary blackout, has gotten me to wondering: if I was kidnapped (something I very much wish to avoid, of course!), I imagine I would want as much media attention as possible, as it acts to put pressure on institutions sponsoring journalists to pony up. The larger question of whether or not these institutions should pay a ransom wouldn't matter to me. If there was a ransom, as opposed to a political demand(as there is here, unfortunately), I'd want it paid, as would any of the noisy talking heads on tv who say that the parties in question should hang tough, if it were their butt.

Before I say this, I want to preface the following with my acknowledgement that the Monitor is one of the better mainstream American news media outlets. Nevertheless, if news organization X finds that one of their journalists has been kidnapped and tries to sit on the news for a time, can't it be reasonably construed that by reducing the visibility of that particular kidnapping, they are acting to reduce the likelihood that they'll be asked to pay a large ransom? I'm not willing to say that unequivocally, because there's another dynamic at play: sometimes criminal organizations kidnap westerners, then "sell" them to jihadist groups who want hostages for political aims. In that case, you would arguably want to do the opposite, at least initially, until you determine the nature of the kidnappers.

Of course, if the kidnappers are merely criminals in search of loot, I could see them selling a hostage to a jihadist group after the media company froze out the criminal group when they determined that all they wanted was money, and decided not to sweat it, and reacted lackadaisically. I'm not saying this dynamic is at play here. But writ large, I could see it as an explanation of why the criminal groups end up dealing with the jihadists.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006



property is theft, or

sexy revolutionary...

Or at least, that's what she told me. I think I stole this image from Jonathan Schwarz, who stole it from Harry MacDougall(who's old URLs are no longer active...)

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

assorted images

Joanne Whalley and Ian McKellen from Scandal, 1989, via I've noticed that in a surprising number of her movies, Joanne Whalley either stabs somebody or she gets stabbed, but not here.

map-o-england diana muldaur-smST mozilla-you-clod

duchamp-LHOOQ-viaartlex-dot-com ariana richards painting-web-dot-green-dot-ch-

mermaid-ariana richards former kid actress Arianna Richards became a painter
(but the faux Mona lisa, "LHOOQ" is from Duchamp...)

naked cord 810 archiv-dot-neviditelnypes-dot-zpravy-dot-cz
and, a naked car! Ok, this is a semi-nude 1937 Cord. Cars were more modest back then.
from some Czech site, here.

Monday, January 16, 2006


MLK-francis miller-LIFE-utsa-edu
photo courtesy Francis Miller/LIFE magazine and UTSA.

as you know, Martin Luther King would have been 77 years and one day old today.His actual birthday was yesterday, January 15th.
(As I grow older, it seems more amazing to me that he accomplished all he did in 39 years with us.)

MLK crowd at DC 250-000 aug 63

this of course is the iconic photo of the crowd at the mall, estimated at around 250 thousand, that heard MLK speak in August of 1963. We have had crowds this big since, noteably in the spring of 2003 to protest the upcoming war on Iraq. But you wouldn't know it from modern day TV news coverage in the US. Unlike in '63, we now we have 3 full-time 24 hour news channels in the US... and a public that's less well-informed than ever.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Marjane Satrapi

Marjane Satrapi-from-diplomatie-dot-gouv-dot-fr

You didn't know there were female middle eastern cartoonists? Well there's at least one. Ms. Satrapi was born in Iran but left with her family as a child after the revolution. I believe the quote from the cartoon below roughly translates into

"The Shah's government imprisoned my uncle but the Islamic government sentenced him to death."


Why don't you pass the time with a game of Texas hold 'em?

mohamed-el-baradei-spacewar The Manchurian Candidate book
Bush wants hearings regarding the NSA spying scandal. I don’t know if I should even call it a scandal as it’s unclear to me to what degree people out there in real-people-land are concerned about it, or even understand the issues at stake. The rapidly evolving conventional wisdom regarding why Bush wants hearings is that he thinks the democrats will make themselves look shrill and foolish, and after the herculeanly inept “grilling” of Sam Alito this past week I readily agree that this is possible.
(see “Bush in the Briar Patch”- John Dickerson, in Slate.)

The problem, as I see it, is that Republicans are framing the “issue” and Democrats are letting them, perhaps out of timidity.(Or stupidity.) Fox News say it’s about our rights versus our security, and if you accept that middle school civics class trope you’re an idiot. Of course people are going to choose security. Security is macho. “Rights” are whiney. You and your whiney, whiney rights, liberals. Go back to Connecticut, or Sweden, etc. Sadly, that's what we are living with today. But Americans already mistrust George Jr for being a liar, even if senatorial democrats, to say nothing of CNN, are too afraid to use that word. The problem with unfettered spying is the enemies list, which is bigger than Nixon’s. How many people are on George Junior’s enemies list? You know the sumbitch has one. How many people is he spying on under the guise of calling them terrorists? Take a page from Richard Condon, and the good version of the Manchurian Candidate(1962):

Senator Iselin: I have here a list of the names of 207 persons who are known by the Secretary of Defense as being members of the Communist Party...I demand an answer, Mr. Secretary. There will be no covering up, sir, no covering up. You are not going to get your hands on this list.

Rights versus Security: stupid. Bush’s enemies list: provocative and timely. We already know that Mohammed El-Baradei is on that list, and in the fall of 2004 the NSA spied on him. Did Bush ok it? A year later El-Baradei won the Nobel prize, along with the IAEA. Why don’t any of the s***-for-brains loonies who go on opinion teevee the cable news networks to discuss NSA spying talk about that?
You want to win with the NSA spy scandal, ask about who Bush is spying on with his presumptive powers. I’d inquire about all the persons who’ve won the Nobel peace prize who’ve spent time in the USA since 9.11.2001, at a conference, or giving a speech or whatever. How about Sibel Edmonds, or Richard Clark, or Richard Ben-Veniste? Did Bush spy on any of them, just because he decided he could? People who opposed John Bolton’s nomination to the UN. People who testified in ways the White House didn’t care for before the 9-11 comission. Rights versus security? Please. Turn the Fucking Tables.


Hunter at Daily Kos discusses it here(June 2005), and,

Washington Post: IAEA Leader's Phone Tapped
U.S. Pores Over Transcripts to Try to Oust Nuclear Chief(December 2004)

Diallo Sekou in deskrat chronicles discusses El Baradei, here.

(I was originally going to title this post "George Bush, jr is the bravest, kindest, warmest, most wonderful human being I've ever known in my life." But I just couldn't.)

Saturday, January 14, 2006

il Hajj

BBC-afp-mecca at night
photo courtesy AFP and BBC

You may have heard of the 345 people who died at the Hajj in Mecca on Thursday, at the stoning of the devil ceremony. Unfortunately mass-scale tragedies are nothing new for the Hajj, the pilgrimage to Mecca that is expected, if possible, at least once in every Muslim's lifetime. (Although my mother's family is Muslim, I am not.)

Just since 1990:

* On July 2, 1990, a stampede inside a pedestrian tunnel (Al-Ma'aisim tunnel) leading out from Mecca towards Mina and the Plains of Arafat led to the deaths of 1,426 pilgrims.
* On May 23, 1994, a stampede killed at least 270 pilgrims at the stoning of the devil ritual.
* On April 9, 1998, at least 118 pilgrims were trampled to death and 180 injured in an incident on Jamarat Bridge.
* On March 5, 2001, 35 pilgrims were trampled in a stampede during the stoning of the devil ritual.
* On February 11, 2003, the stoning the devil ritual claimed 14 pilgrims' lives
* On February 1, 2004, 251 pilgrims were killed and another 244 injured in a stampede during the stoning ritual in Mina.


* In December 1975 an exploding gas cylinder caused a fire in a tent colony. 200 pilgrims were killed.
* On April 15, 1997 343 pilgrims were killed and 1,500 injured in a tent fire.

the Al Ghaza Hotel, is said to have housed a restaurant, a convenience store, and a hostel. The hostel was reported to have been housing pilgrims to the 2006 Hajj. It is not clear how many pilgrims were in the hotel at the time of the collapse. As of latest reports, the death toll is 76 and the number of injured is 64.

see also this BBC report. And BBC's "What is the Hajj?"

I imagine some westerners look at this grim record and conclude that Muslims just don't value life the way other people do, but I don't believe that is the case. Naturally I haven't been on a Hajj, so I haven't seen it first hand, but my impression is that a lot of the fault lies with the Saudi government for not updating the facility, perhaps because they fear criticisms from fundamentalist hard-liners. The dome of the rock has been pretty much the same for 14 centuries, and the facility hosts as many as four million pilgrims in just a few days, since the Hajj only occurs once a year, and is not an ongoing thing which would allow pilgrims to show up whenever they had time. The stoning of the devil ceremony, for example, involves pilgrims throwing pebbles at three pillars, and all four million pilgrims have to cross the same bridge to get to the pillars. I don't doubt the Saudis would be criticized in some quarters if they modified the facility, which obviously wasn't designed to host so many visitors, but I hope they do.

Friday, January 13, 2006

game theory is your friend

from wikepedia's article about "The Evolution of Co-operation"(1984):

The Evolution of Cooperation is a book and an article of the same title by political science professor Robert Axelrod. The nine-page article is currently one of the most cited articles ever to be published in the journal Science.

...The book included two chapters comparing Axelrod's findings to surprising findings in seemingly unrelated fields. In one of these, Axelrod examined spontaneous instances of cooperation during trench warfare in World War I. Troops of one side would shell the other side with mortars, but would often do so on a rigid schedule, and aim for a specific point in the other side's trenches, allowing the other side to minimize casualties. The other side would reciprocate in kind. The generals on both sides were satisfied that shelling was occurring and therefore the war was progressing satisfactorily, while the men in the trenches found a way to cooperatively protect each other.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

faith-based butchery and other items

Billmon, after a break: "a bipartisan scandal"

Al-jazeera: "Lebanese gays challenge region's biggst taboo"

(Is this why George Bush, jr thinks they're terrorists?)

Stony Brook prof Michael Schwartz in Asia Times:
Consider then this gruesome arithmetic: if the US fulfills its expectation of surpassing 150 air attacks per month, and if the average air strike produces the (gruesomely) modest total of 10 fatalities, air power alone could kill well over 20,000 Iraqi civilians in 2006. Add the ongoing (but reduced) mortality due to other military causes on all sides, and the 1,000 civilian deaths per week rate recorded by the Hopkins study could be dwarfed in the coming year.

The new US strategy, billed as a way to de-escalate the war, is actually a formula for the slaughter of Iraqi civilians.

(will George Bush, jr maintain they're all terrorists?)

Sharon the jailer

Michigan professor and blogger Juan Cole has a piece at Salon on Ariel Sharon, "The Jailer", which is worth reading. Even if you don't read it, I recommend this linked Ha'aretz interview with
Sharon advisor Dov Weisglass
(apparently Weisglass later repudiated his remarks. When a politico takes back what he says you have to wonder if he's been unintentionally truthful.) :

I found a device[referring to the evacuation of Israeli settlers from Gaza], in cooperation with the management of the world, to ensure that there will be no stopwatch here. That there will be no timetable to implement the settlers' nightmare. I have postponed that nightmare indefinitely. Because what I effectively agreed to with the Americans was that part of the settlements would not be dealt with at all, and the rest will not be dealt with until the Palestinians turn into Finns...
Effectively, this whole package that is called the Palestinian state, with all that it entails, has been removed from our agenda indefinitely. And all this with authority and permission. All with a presidential blessing and the ratification of both houses of Congress. What more could have been anticipated? What more could have been given to the settlers?"

and Cole: "Still, he dealt a permanent, if partial, setback to the expansionist and aggressive Likud Party. It is hard to imagine that even if it returned to power, the party could realistically hope to put colonists back into Gaza. Instead, the Hamas Party, a branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, will almost certainly rule the strip."

My view is, even if Sharon has never been concerned with the best interests of the Palestineans, he demonstrated that the settlers are moveable. Gaza was evacuated, in comparative peace. And the rest of them will be moved, and the wall will come down. This year? Next year? Soon? No. But it will happen.

see also, Clayton Swisher, "The Truth About Camp David"

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

freeway blogger

the freeway blogger has a new one up:

a Wednesday miscellany

apparently there is an "I Hate Pat Roberton" blog. They even have their own Pat Robertson favicon.
(via Dr Forbush.)

CBS News

and, as a visual corrective, here's a photo of Dana Wynter being fitted for her pod replacement double for Invasion of the Body Snatchers.
dana wynter- being duplicated-jimusnr-dot-com

Natasha at the CIA

Natasha Kaplinsky-cia-org-uk chemical industry association

BBC news presenter Natasha Kaplinsky at the Chemical Industry Association. I often wish so-called anchorpersons were called news presenters here in the US. It sounds more honest, doesn't it? What the hell are they anchoring anyway? I mean, besides absurd salaries for reading th' tele-Prompt-R®. The ones in Britain do it for less, and they know how to speak English!

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Alito, pt 2: is Vanguard the key?

Ted Kennedy has an op-ed in the Washington Post,
Alito's Credibility Problem”, in which he mentions the judge's application with the Reagan Justice department in 1985, in which he criticized Roe v Wade. In a 1990 confirmation process Kennedy questioned him about it and Alito reportedly said "I was just a 35-year-old seeking a job." (35 is the new 19...)

But I wonder if the democrats will get more traction from a conflict-of-interest issue:

On a questionnaire for the Senate Judiciary Committee in his court-of-appeals confirmation process in 1990, Alito said he would avoid a conflict of interest by not voting on cases involving First Federal Savings & Loan of Rochester, NY, and two investment firms, Smith Barney and Vanguard Group because he held accounts with them. However, in 2002 Alito upheld a lower court's dismissal of a lawsuit filed against multiple investment company defendants, including the Vanguard Group. When notified of the situation, Alito denied doing anything improper but recused himself from further involvement in the case.

On November 10 [2005], Judge Alito wrote Senator Specter,the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee explaining his participation in the case. He said that when he had originally listed Vanguard and Smith Barney in 1990, "my intention was to state that I would never knowingly hear a case where a conflict of interest existed. [...] As my service continued,
I realized that I had been unduly restrictive."
(from Wikipedia's Samuel Alito entry, of all places.)

Many of the issues for which the democrats could take Alito to task are obscure to ordinary people. But Alito looking the other way and allowing a mutual fund company to get the desicion they want is something that a lot of ordinary Americans can wrap their heads around, especially as it subtly underlines his wealth, counterpointed by how many people have lost substantial value on their retirement investments since the GOP took over.

photo of a Vanguard Six, a British car from the 50s-60s(and utterly unrelated to mutual funds.)

Alito pt 1, and Harry Belafonte, pt 2

Matthew Yglesias writes:
The scant merits of his nomination aside, I think it's unlikely that we'll see a serious anti-Alito effort from Democrats on the Hill. The political judgment going into that strategy may be mistaken (I tend to find the case against a huge fight persuasive, but I could be swung the other way)
He could be swung the other way. Well. I guess that's pretty generous of him.

Taylor Marsh, another new(to me)blogger says of Yglesias:

Judge Samuel Alito is the wrong judge at the wrong time and just because conservatives are in control doesn't mean we shouldn't fight the fight. You never lose ground when you fight for that which you believe, though you may lose a battle or two, you likely will win allies in the longer war.

Many Americans believe the Democratic Party doesn't stand for anything but caution, calculation and capitulation.

As evidenced by George W. Bush's victory in 2004, people will even vote for an obstinate, incompetent idiot over any alternative that seems to shift in the blowing wind or someone who won't stand up against something that is just plain wrong (see Kerry caving to the SwiftVet boys).

No wonder we're the minority.

via Avedon, again.

Periodically Arvin Hill and I have talked about a certain line, between the regular lefty bloggers and the ones who've realized that being respectable pundits is within their grasp, and have hopes of making it onto Cokie Roberts's rolodex, and maybe getting invited to swanky beltway parties, etc. (Kevin Drum comes to mind, as sort of the prototype for this second group. Yglesias clearly belongs there too. )

photo via reuters
On the other hand, Harry Belafonte seems less concerned about this. He met with Hugo Chavez recently, and opined that George W. Bush is "the biggest terrorist threat" out there, which immediately resulted in UNICEF piping up that he was speaking as a private citizen and not in his capacity as their ambassador.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Who wants victory?

Alex at Martini Republic says Paul Bremer requested that troop levels in Iraq be increased by another 350,000, back in the spring of 2004(around the time of the 1st(failed) Fallujah offensive.)

Even though I could well see Bush walking away from the ruin he made of Iraq and declaring victory, I never believed the neocons ever wanted to create a peaceful post-invasion Iraq. From where I'm sitting, the fact that Rumsfeld and Bush know they don’t have enough troops and are also scaling back the troop levels we presently have just serves to demonstrate that they don’t give a damn about fostering the creation of a peaceful and democratic Iraq.

They got exactly what they wanted– they tore the country apart, and mean to destroy other countries in the region with subsequent invasions on the cheap.

Then they’ll shrug their shoulders and chalk up failure to the supposedly irreemable savagery of the Islamic world, and maybe the unwillingness of liberals to be sufficiently supportive to boot.

Taylor Marsh notes that
Bremer doesn't like being the scapegoat, but regardless of this face saving move on his part, he still has to answer for disbanding the entire Iraqi military, which included letting them take their armaments with them, as they disappreared into the city with nothing to do but plot and plan against the preemptors.

LA Times:"Bremer: Request for More Troops Was Ignored"

Sundry posts elsewhere

from today’s Altercation:

Jim Van Norman of Austin, Texas writes:
Here's a prediction for 2006: Just in time for the elections, GW will come to realize that the Iraqis are now standing up, so we can begin to stand down. He will, flying in the face of the reality-based community, declare success based upon a newly formed Iraqi government and begin a phased withdrawal. This will all be reminiscent of his about face on the creation of a Department of Homeland Security -- a once-ridiculed idea will become his own. My other prediction: the Democratic Party will sit slack-jawed and silent as Bush distorts reality and claims victory.
from The Ape Man, a relatively new blog:
"The Tactical Benefits of Crazy Lying"
One of the key tactical realities the GOP has figured out about the modern media landscape is that no matter what, mainstream reporters and pundits will never say "the GOP is just crazily lying."

The upshot of this is that when the GOP tells some crazy lie, reporters generally will give you a "Claim A isn't true, but it's an exaggeration of Fact B which is true."

Problem is, often Fact B is made up...

from Digby:
The 700 Club's average daily audience, according to AC Nielsen's November sweeps, is up 26% over last year.["January 2005] At a time when most daily shows are struggling The 700 Club is experiencing tremendous increases. November's average daily audience of 922,000 households is the highest in ten years and we experienced the same success in October and November.
(Ape Man via Avedon at the Sideshow.)

And finally, Arvin takes note of the Minutemen bringing their loathesome schtick here to Denton this past Friday.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Pat Robertson is the devil

Pat Robertson-cnn
"I'm even crazier than you thought I was."

from CNN:

The prime minister, who withdrew Israeli settlers and troops from Gaza and parts of the West Bank last summer over heated objections from his own Likud Party, was breathing with the aid of a ventilator after doctors operated to stop the bleeding in his brain.

Robertson, 75, founded the Christian Coalition and in 1988 failed in a bid for the Republican presidential nomination. He last stirred controversy in August, when he called for the assassination of Venezuela's president, Hugo Chavez. (Full story)

Robertson later apologized, but still compared Chavez to Hitler and former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein in the process.

The same month, the Anti-Defamation League criticized Robertson for warning that God would "bring judgment" against Israel for its withdrawal from Gaza, which it had occupied since the 1967 Mideast war.

Robertson said Thursday that Sharon was "a very likable person, and I am sad to see him in this condition." [????]

Do the 1 million people who watch this guy even think about the stuff he says? Do they believe they love Israel?

Is it, "I'm sad to see him in this condition, but hey, it's God's judgement." ? If you don't have to be accountable for the crazy stuff you say, where does leave everyone else?

Ok, I can do it too: I'm just kidding, he's not the devil. I'm just sad to see how crazy he's become.

Oh that's right, everyone else is swimming in a decadent miasma of moral relativism, but not Pat and his flock, so I can't do that.

Luke 4:6
The devil said to him, "I will give you all this authority, and their glory, for it has been delivered to me; and I give it to whomever I want.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Blood-stained gravestones

BBc-ap-dead child ID in Karbala
dead child identified in Kerbela, BBC/AP

Wednesday was a bloody day in Iraq, and apparently today was even worse. One of the attacks, as you may have heard, was on a funeral procession.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Alfred Hitchcock with terrier

Alfred Hitchcock w terrier-petergowland-dot-com
courtesy Peter Gowland

I will be away until Thursday, attending to 3-dimensional matters. Happy new year.