Saturday, January 11, 2003

Fall of Civilization Alert!
(Via Andrew Stuttaford at The Corner) The Guardian amazes with 'Cleansed' Greenland cabinet falls:
The Greenland government collapsed yesterday because of a row about a phenomenon associated more commonly with the medieval period rather than the 21st century: witchcraft.
Points for novelty!
The Arctic territory's home rule government, in office for only 37 days, fell apart because of its senior civil servant's penchant for what some politicians called "witch-doctoring and other mumbo jumbo" and others "plain exorcism".

The affair centres on the activities of Jens Lyberth, who called upon the services of a healer to drive evil spirits from the government's offices in Nuuk, Greenland's capital.
Hmmm, most politicians promise to do that if elected.
"When you move into new premises, it's normal to air the room and give the walls some fresh paint," he said, explaining why he had hired Maannguaq Berthelsen to "drive negative energy" from the building.

Mr Lyberth urged the 600 civil servants under his control to use similar methods to improve the strained relations between Greenlanders and Danes, who make up about a fifth of the island's population.
Kinda sounds like Patty Murray!
The "healer" at the centre of the row made matters worse by giving an interview to Greenland Radio in which she described how she had purified the offices by "harnessing her powers" for 90 minutes while standing outside the office block late last month.
Sounds good to me! I wonder what her hourly rate is and whether it's OK to harness your powers in the local pub?

Despite what you might think, the capital of Greenland is Nuuk - not Nyuk!
So little time, so much to blog!
Knickerless girl freed without charge

Pa. Amish Complain About Zoning Laws

Tree sitter forcibly removed

Attallah Calls On Christians to Carry Out "Martyr Operations" (You first, dude.)

Hillary and Ex-Klansman Team Up to Create 'Planned Pandemonium'

Math mistake costs Montgomery County millions (No, not Maryland)
And the results are in!
Tim Blair's attempt to assist the delusional British poet laureate, Andrew Motion Lotion, has produced quite a crop. My favorite is from Joseph Latino:
They drink good wine, but never try
To understand that brave men die
So they can carp, and whine, and cry
That freedom's leader isn't a fucking idiotic socialist appeaser of fascism.
But I was never much for scansion.

Mark Steyn also weighs in with a in-depth expose, Going through the motions:
Now, in this exclusive excerpt from his forthcoming memoir, Going Through the Motions, Andrew Motion reveals the inspiration and passion behind this classic of English poetry:

So I was pottering about the house when the phone rang: "Professor Motion?" said a female voice. "It's the Guardian here. We were wondering if you might like to give us a poem about the war. Ideally, we're talking something shorter than Tom Paulin but longer than Gillian Wearing . . ."

"Please listen carefully to the following menu options," I said, and patched her through to customer service: "If you're a royal duchess in need of an ode to your hernia operation, press one. For sonnets, press two. Haikus, press three . . ."

She came back five minutes later. "We'd like to go for the Premium Quatrain package, including complimentary Latin-style title for £60 plus VAT," she said. "As you know, a lot of distinguished wordsmiths have spoken out against the war - Harold Pinter, George Michael, Barbra Streisand - but we feel you'd bring a unique perspective to the situation."
"All we need to do is start a dialogue" alert!
Gweilo Diaries administers a well deserved spanking to inveterate whiner, Joshua Marshall, on North Korea:
Marshall is of the opinion:
"What got us into this situation was our refusal -- a refusal based apparently on principle -- to talk with the North Koreans or to assuage their security concerns."
Funny, I thought the North's pursuit of a nuclear weapons program in violation of international agreements had something to do with it.

Marshall further asserts that the Clinton administration was aware of North Korea's violations and informed the Bush team during the transition. Incomprehensibly, Marshall seems to think this reflects well on Clinton and poorly on Bush.

If true, if Clinton knew of Kim's pursuit of nuclear weapons, did nothing about it, continued supplying oil, and left this odiferous, rotting fish behind for Bush to clean up, then it constitutes self-serving irresponsibility of nearly criminal proportions.

I look forward to the Congressional investigations asking the Clintonistas "what did you know and when did you know it." If the reply is that they were aware and ignored it, the Democrats will have lost whatever remaining shred of credibility they have regarding defense issues.
C'mon everyone, sing Kumbaya along with Joshua and Bubba!
Can you say "Freudian slip"? ... I knew you could!
Ellen Ratner apologized for expressing the desire that the war with Iraq be "messed up" so that President Bush would not be re-elected.

Meanwhile, from another venue in Munchkinland, everyone's favorite soccer mom, Senator Patty Murray, still defends her lust for the great humanitarian, Osama bin Laden. A video tape of Patty's remarks showed up on Fox News and the schoolgirl crush was amazing to behold. James Taranto has the latest over at Best of the Web in Patty to Press: Go Construe Yourself!
Why won't Murray just admit she was wrong? Her explanations are about as believable as Trent Lott's claim that he admired Strom Thurmond's 1948 views on national defense.
I still think she should stick to the idiot defense.

Friday, January 10, 2003

Rocket Science Alert!
The Straits Times reveals that Internet use in class 'fails to improve grades':
LONDON - Equipping schools with a million computers and connecting them all to the Internet has had little, if any, impact on standards, according to a study commissioned by Britain's Education Department.

Despite what the report called 'unprecedented levels of government investment' - including more than £1 billion (S$2.8 billion) over the past five years - it could find 'no consistent relationship' between computer use and pupil achievement in any subject at any age, the Telegraph reported.
The amazing thing is that someone actually thought it would further the pupils' education.
Hold my beer alert!
The BBC stuns with Monks insist on high-alcohol beer:
A French Government drive against alcoholism has incurred the wrath of Belgium's famous Trappist monks.

Famous for vows of silence, the Trappist monks are also well known for brewing strong beers, including Chimay and Westmalle.

But the French Government now wants to slap high taxes on any of those beers that contain more than 8.5% alcohol.
Now that's what I call a beer!
The Trappist brewers argue that this is against the spirit of the European free trade area, the single market.
Actually, as might be expected, they have a spokesman.
The new fiscal measures were announced unexpectedly at the end of last year in order to deter alcoholism.

But French wine - which has a stronger alcoholic content than Trappist beer and is already taxed less than beer - is not being penalised in the same way.
I'm shocked!
Your Personal Presidential Monument with an Attitude!
Endorsed by Republicans, Democrats, and Independents to massage your political kinks!

Talks too - follow the link.
New Terrorist Catch and Release Program!
(Via Trojan Horseshoes) One Hand Clapping has the photo!

I always like a fishing story.
Ruh Oh!
Ashok Sharma for the AP reports that Giant Statue of Hindu God Falls in India:
NEW DELHI, India - A giant statue of the Hindu god Krishna that took six years to build toppled onto its back this week, killing three people, Indian villagers who had raised the money for the construction said Friday.

"This was a bad omen," said Shivram Sharma, the priest at a small temple near where the 108-foot statue collapsed Monday in the village of Narsinghpur, on the outskirts of the Indian capital.
No excrement, Sherlock! Photo here.
Quick, while they aren't watching!
Dissecting Leftism and Gweilo Diaries report that Communist China has blocked Blogspot. In that case, it must be time for a little humor:
Pilot Hero Wang Wei: "Jet Boy"

Most concerned world citizens only know Wang Wei as the pilot hero who single handedly stopped an imperialist attack on the homeland by flying his plane into the hegemonist aircraft. But comrades on the farms outside the village of Heap Dung in Zhejiang province remember him well as a young Socialist who always wanted to be a pilot protecting the Socialist Revolution. Auntie Xhou, a toothless 40 year old says "We were all toilers, but Wang Wei's elderly father, Wang Lo was our Party leader and was away most of the time at the provincial capital in Hangzhou. His young wife Lo Pants was a Party activist and teacher who spent all her time exhorting the young men of the of the village to increase their Socialist labors. Many was the night we heard her voice in the darkness calling 'More! More! More!'".

As a result when Wang Wei was born, he was raised by the village of Heap Dung itself and became their favorite son. Even as a boy he wanted to be a pilot and fashioned a "pilot's helmet" from dung from the fields. Then he would stretch his arms wide and run around the socialist toilers crying " Xoom! Xoom! I am Jet Boy! I am strafing you imperialist lackeys for I have the guiding spirit of the Great Helmsman! A-a-a-a-a-a-a!"

Some anti-Socialist youth resented his rightful exuberance and referred to him as "Dung Hat", "Jet Bottom", or "Buffalo Hole". One time after he upset the village harvest cart in the settling lagoon while "strafing" it, these youth buried him to his neck in a hill of fresh dung. All that changed when his father returned to the village with a platoon of Security Police for a re-education session. Wang Wei was fondly known thereafter by everyone as Jet Boy!
Lock and Load Alert!
Silent Running suggests that it's time to get some rounds down range via the folks at
See this every f*****g day?
This one thing or person making You
feel like grabbing a gun and
shooting it, dammit!?
But, as You might know, using a real gun
could be dangerous and is strictly
prohibited by law most of the time ;-)
[Serious:] Don't (!) shoot with real guns at
real people or things that are not Your own!
[Fun again:] Just take a picture of Your
favourite target, upload it here and make
as many holes as You like ;-) !
The possibilities are endless! Dang, where's my Fidel poster?

Thursday, January 09, 2003

You can't make this stuff up!
Over at ABCwatch, Uncle alerts us to a highly distilled essence of wingnuttery:
Radio Nation Summer

New Dimensions - Special Weekday Summer Series

Intimate conversations with many of this century's leading thinkers and social innovators. In the oral tradition of story telling, each program presents original and stimulating ideas about mind, body and spirit, and the connection to self, family, community, environment and the planet.
Other than raising concern about a shortage of Australian wingnuts - most of the deep thinkers seem to be from the US or UK - it's about what you would expect: Anita Roddick, Jimmy Carter, and other, lesser lights. Uncle picks a winner though:
Jean Shinoda Bolen, M.D.
Juicy Crones: Wonderful Older Women

There are now some 43 million women in America over 50. With the help of goddess archetypes that every woman can cultivate within herself - older women can revolutionize the way they live and the way they are seen by society. Bolen suggests specific goddess archetypes that embody compassion, fierceness, humour and wisdom in older women.
I wonder what the Doc has lined up to inspire juicy geezers? Hmm, I wonder if being a juicy geezer is even legal?
They're having a party
Philip Delves Broughton in the Telegraph (UK) dishes Feasting and tax breaks as Chirac reins in his press:
Under the debauched gaze of Putti, President Chirac welcomed the Paris press corps to the Elysee Palace yesterday to offer his New Year wishes.

Five hundred journalists stood through speeches by their association president and M Chirac before swooping on a feast turned out by the Elysee chefs: roast duck, petits fours and case upon case of champagne. It is not every day that most of them see the inside of the palace, and they went for the food like schoolboys at a cricket tea.

After his speech, M Chirac stepped into the crowd, tanned from his New Year holiday in Morocco, and was swamped by pallid journalists cravenly seeking his hand or a photograph.
More Gallic hijinks by following the link.
Wiener Dog Alert!
Reuters amazes with Hunter Becomes Prey as Eagle Makes Meal of Dog:
A golden eagle made a meal of a dachshund hunting dog in Sweden after experts warned the cold spell sweeping northern Europe was forcing hungry birds of prey closer to towns and cities.
I wondered he if wanted the onion sauce?
A little poesy!
Tim Blair is having a poetry contest since England's poet laureate seems to have a severe port side lean.
Airhead Alert!
Over at A Small Victory, that obnoxious airhead, Arianna Huffington, gets a richly deserved Fisking. Arianna, your 15 minutes are up.

On the other hand, even Zsa Zsa would admire her chutzpah - $10 million and $10K/month - not a bad temporary assignment.
Dear Leader Alert!
Michael Kelly clears up a few things in the Washington Post in Kick the (Korea) Can:
On North Korea, the conventional wisdom in Washington, which happens to be the same as the conventional wisdom in Pyongyang, goes roughly like this: George W. Bush triggered the crisis by excessive hardening-of-line and axis-of-evil-calling; Bush is compounding his hard-lining error by irresponsibly refusing to negotiate with Pyongyang; and, paradoxically, Bush is guilty of foreign-policy incoherence or worse in adopting a harder line toward Saddam Hussein than toward Kim Jong Il.

Conventional wisdom tends by its nature to get things wrong, but seldom this wrong and seldom this dangerously wrong. This is wrong to the point of divorce from reality.
And while we're on the subject of North Korea, y'all be pleased to know that Kofi Annan is helping out by sending over primo wingnut, Ernst Blofeld, er, Maurice Strong to "assess the humanitarian situation". You remember Maury, he's the author of the "Earth Charter" and the guy who thinks:
In order to save the planet, the group decides: Isn’t the only hope for the planet that the industrialized civilizations collapse? Isn’t it our responsibility to bring this about?"
Oh yeah, he also thinks people are having too many children and should require licenses. He's had five so far. To speak of.
I'm getting too old!
John Ellis says
If Glenn Reynolds finds out about Foneblog, we're talking ceaseless Instapundit.
I can see it now:

[Officer] Ma'am, you just swerved across two lanes of traffic and then turned right from the left turn lane!

[Blogger] But I was updating my weblog with my shopping list and a picture of the radicchio!
Job Incentive Alert!
The NY Daily News stuns the senses with Say troops ate Pygmies:
NAIROBI, Kenya - A United Nations team is investigating reports that Congolese rebel troops have killed and eaten Pygmies in northeastern Congo.

"The UN is taking these accusations very seriously," said Manodje Mounoubai of the UN mission in Congo. Another agency source described the cannibalism charges as credible.

The two rebel factions often hire Pygmies to hunt food for them in the forests as they fight to oust the rival rebel Congolese Rally for Democracy-Liberation from mineral-rich areas of Ituri province, a UN official said.

If the expert hunters return empty-handed, rebel troops kill and eat them, the official said.
Hey, it's Africa.
Boob Tube Alert!
The NY Post astounds with Jesse Pumped Up To Be The New Donahue:
FORMER Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura is about to announce that he will host his own show on MSNBC, sources say.

It's not yet clear yet where Ventura's one-hour show will air, but that an announcement is likely to come at the end of this month or early next month.

One scenario has Ventura hosting a show at 10 p.m., where MSNBC currently airs the pre-taped "MSNBC Reports."

It is also possible Ventura will replace Phil Donahue's low-rated show, "Donahue," at 8 p.m.

Sources say MSNBC officials have been considering pre-empting "Donahue" anyway for a nightly war report show should fighting break out with Iraq. That would effectively put Donahue back into retirement.
While Jesse can sometimes be engaging, being the "new Donahue" is probably prophetic.
Class Warfare Alert!
(Via American Real Politik) William F. Buckley sums it up:
The price of tax cuts isn't reductions in federal revenues. The price of tax cuts is having to sit around listening for weeks and months to the Democrats' Pavlovian wails about "the rich" -- if not "the very rich" -- if not, forsooth, "the wealthiest 1 percent."
And "You'll get these tax dollars when you pry them from my cold dead fingers".

Wednesday, January 08, 2003

My first LOTR post!
Fans Outraged at New Character in The Return of the King
Wellington, New Zealand - A recently leaked trailer for The Return of the King has Tolkien fans outraged over the apparent addition of a new character - Jar-Jaromir. The scene depicted in the trailer shows Jar-Jaromir shouting, "Gondora gonna fallsa"; he then trips over a corpse and knocks down a couple of Uruk-hai.

Producers of The Lord of the Rings trilogy confirmed the addition of the half-brother of Boromir and Faramir.

"While The Two Towers is performing better at the box office than The Fellowship of the Ring, we are worried about a demographic that is skewing much older than desired. More mature fans are very good to have, but it's the younger fans who buy the merchandise. That's really what brings in the bucks on a movie like this," said producer Tim Wilcox.
Click through for a picture.
Caddyshack alert!
(Via Tim Blair) One of the usual suspects, Peter FitzSimons, has his knickers in a twist because Bob Dylan is a golfer:
No, Bobby. Please, no. It's just not you, babe. And I, for one, simply refuse to believe that the deity who designed The Times They Are A'Changin', Idiot Wind, Isis and the Chimes of Freedom Flashing is doing what they say you're doing.
How many fairways must a man head down, before you can call him a golfer? When it comes to you, Bobby, none of us cares. And speaking of us, for a nice change, how old and ludicrous do you think it makes us feel when the man who first awakened in our suburban souls a sense of the gypsy dancing down Desolation Row, of ghost-poets and rough-riders in the badlands of the North Country, of the blue-eyed boy in the middle of seven sad forests, out in front of a dozen dead oceans, is now vaguely looking for his golf ball in the rough?
We can't wait to see you perform in Sydney next month, and hope you have it all sorted by then. But in the meantime we need you to crank it up. Give us an anthem to help stop this useless war on Iraq, and we'll call it all even on that same card.
Shove it Peter, you scraggly hippie.  Saddam is mine!Hold your cursor over the gopher for a message to Peter.
Beer Wench?
I guess I really haven't been keeping up with modern cricket. Reuters reports that Beer wenches lubricate cricket fans:
SYDNEY (Reuters) - Cricket-mad Aussies at the fifth Ashes test in Sydney this week made sure they missed none of the action by hiring the latest sports accessory, a "beer wench".

Instead of wasting time queueing for cooling beakers of Victoria Bitter, fans paid young women from the modelling agency Sex Bomb Promotions A$65 (23 pounds) an hour to do it for them.

Alistair Flower told The Daily Telegraph newspaper in Sydney he and his mates had hired two beer wenches, dressed in denim hot pants and tight T-shirts, for the first days of the test so they wouldn't miss any of the play.

"We were surrounded by the Barmy Army (British fans) and wanted to have a couple of glamours in our group," Flower told the paper, which labelled the cricket accessory a "beer wench".
This was the only beer wench I had heard of.

UPDATE: The Yobbo is all over this one including a link with pictures.
Those dang cricketeer assassins!
A hearty howdy to the Yobbo (he's new in town), who reports that the increasingly delusional Bobby Mugabe thinks that the English and Australian cricket teams really ought to boycott the Cricket World Cup in Zimbabwe, since they might assassinate him between innings. I'm afraid that I have the provincial Yankee opinion that cricket is merely an excuse for a prolonged picnic and that aside from a few demon bowlers, the only health hazard is extended boredom.

Can't we spare a Predator with some Hellfire missiles and put whackjob Bobby out of his travail, as well as saving a few of the unfortunate citizens of Zimbabwe? Then we could all get back to the watercress sandwiches and tea.
How could I have missed it?
In my unceasing effort to be the one stop shopping source for news of naked wingnuts (cf. 1, 2, 3), I failed to go back to the original source at the Point Reyes Light, the chronicle of Marin County wackiness. As a result I missed the hot news on Jan. 2 that Nude women protest war again; men also demonstrate. It's a breakthrough, they're going co-ed!
Seeking to "reinvigorate the buzz across the country" from its first photo of women spelling "Peace" with their naked bodies, organizer Donna Sheehan and her group, Unreasonable Women Baring Witness, staged a second, much larger nude peace protest and photo shoot near Point Reyes Station on Sunday.

The sandy shore of Drake’s Beach, rather than a rain-sogged Love Field in Point Reyes Station, was the venue for some 94 women along with more than two dozen men who created two new and separate signs for peace.
Everyone needs a hobby, and a 4 to 1 ratio isn't bad for the guys.
Along with creating a statement for peace, the participants also bonded at this weekend’s shoot.

"There’s a certain level of defiance, and it’s also just a fun thing to do," she said. "And after the shot, we all got a little wet to get the sand off."

"It was automatic," said local singer and Point Reyes Station resident Rhiannon of camaraderie after the protest photo. "We all ran into the cold, glorious water. It was a great moment. We were washing each other off - The whole thing was very body, very human, very physical.

But sadly, you have to read down the page to find out that the co-ed mingling was minimal - the womyn spelled out "Peace" while the myn formed a ruptured chicken. But not to fear, things are "warming up":
Participant Paul Reffell, despite an air of nervousness and uncertainty, said he walked away feeling enthusiastic over the experience of men forming a peace symbol with their bodies.

"Once we were there, we started feeling like we were involved in something different," said Reffell. "It was like family. It was just a wonderful thing."
And some forward thinkers have even got kids and dogs involved (no, they're wearing clothes):
"The more we do, the better," said Bolinas resident Vivienne Verdon-Roe, who said the first photo inspired Bolinas residents to stage their own version of a "Peace" photo, albeit fully-dressed and incorporating children and dogs. A second Bolinas photo is slated for Saturday, Jan. 11, where all who participate will create a "No War" sign with their clothed bodies.
Maybe they can find a farmer to play along and do "crop signs"?

Morning Funnies
American RealPolitik has today's latest political cartoons. I particularly like the first one.

Tuesday, January 07, 2003

Easily Upset Alert!
My sheltered existence had left me previously unaware of Lil Kim, who is apparently a female rap star. However, her cover photo for One World magazine has left the usual suspects with their burnooses in a twist:
Muslims have been outraged by the cover photo of the popular U.S. urban culture magazine One World, which features female rapper Lil Kim wearing the head covering of a burqa and a revealing lingerie set.
For those sensitive to issues of female modesty, viewing the cover photo at the publication’s website is probably not advisable. It features female rap artist Lil Kim posed seductively.

Her head, with the exception of her eyes, is draped with the top portion of what can only be described as a burqa, the now infamous full-body covering worn by many Afghan women.

Unfortunately, Lil Kim’s burqa does not obscure her body in the least. The rest of the garment is tossed over her left shoulder, leaving her body fully exposed with the exception of a skimpy lingerie set.
Whatever Simmons and the One World staff intended with this photo is irrelevant, because for Muslims, both the 7 million in the United States and the 1.2 billion spread across the rest of the world, it is a clear and unambiguous jab at the religion of Islam.
And more:
"That this magazine ran with Lil Kim on the cover like this is totally unacceptable. They need to apologize immediately, as there is no justification for this whatsoever," said Najee Ali, Nat'l Dir. of Project Islamic H.O.P.E.
I wonder if they ever heard the one about Muhammed and the ... no, probably not.
Awesome, totally awesome
The NY Post's Page Six has the latest Sean Penn update:

SEAN Penn's lame "exploratory" trip to Iraq was so exhausting, the actor had to recuperate at a four-star resort in Cabo san Lucas, Mexico, upon his return. Guests at the Las Ventanas resort were shocked to see Penn and his wife, Robin Wright Penn, lounging around the hotel. Several of the guests took time to tease the star about his fact-finding mission. "People were walking up to him and saying real sarcastically, 'Hey Sean, how's Iraq?' or 'Yo man, heard Iraq was really cool,' " reports our spy. "The thing is, he didn't realize people were making fun of him, and would always look at them totally seriously and say, 'Interesting. Iraq was veeeery interesting.' It was kind of funny."

Monday, January 06, 2003

What is it about "public" media?
We are informed via bovination that Your ABC is now Everybody's ABC.

That's what NPR needs! A slogan. Unfortunately PBS seems to have one: Be More PBS dammit!. Refresh the page to get the full effect.
"I am an alien" is winning
The Ballarat Courier (scroll down) has a poser:
A group associated with the purported first human cloning believes aliens are preparing to engage the human race at an "embassy" on earth. What do you think? Is there life out there?

- Yes
- No
- Don't know
- Don't care
- I am an alien
But there are only a few precincts reporting. (Via Tim Blair)
I can't even begin to do this one justice
The Tampa Tribune reports that Parents Misbehave In School Car Lines. Actually, there isn't that much outright misbehavior. What is astonishing though, is that the school car line (and waiting in it) seems to be a central fixture of these people's lives and a big administration problem for the schools.

It's things like this that tell me I'm getting old. When I was a kid there were basically three ways to get to school: foot, bike, and bus. Occasionally a parent would drive someone who was late or missed a bus, but there were never big lines of cars like one sees today. Can anyone explain the rationale? Is it fear of perverts? Fear of traffic? Lack of sidewalks?

And no, we didn't have wimpazoid backpacks either.
Taikonaut Alert!
The BBC reports that Chinese spacecraft lands:
China's fourth unmanned spacecraft, Shenzhou IV, has returned to Earth.

The official Xinhua news agency said it landed as planned on the central grasslands of the vast Inner Mongolia region, a replay of the conclusion of the three previous Shenzhou missions.

The craft had been in orbit since Monday.

It is thought that this was the last test flight before a manned mission planned for later in the year.
To distinguish them from Russian cosmonauts and American astronauts, China uses the term "taikonauts" for its would-be space crews, deriving from the word "taikong" meaning space.

It is understood that about a dozen fighter pilots are training to become taikonauts, although there have been conflicting reports about how many have been chosen and where they are undergoing their training.
No word on warnings to propeller driven UFO's.
Idiot on the loose alert!
Ha'aretz reports Gerda Duisenberg visits E. J'lem, says Israel committing terror:
Gerda Duisenberg, the wife of European Central Bank President Wim Duisenberg, said during a visit Sunday to East Jerualem that Prime Minister Ariel Sharon was provoking the Palestinians and that his government was guilty of committing terror attacks.

Duisenberg made the comments just three hours before two Palestinian suicide bombers blew themselves up in south Tel Aviv, killing 22 people.
Open mouth, insert boot.
Every time there is a break in the violence, Sharon creates a provocation, she said.
One can't help but wonder what sort of cachet Gerda has besides marrying Wim.
In April, Duisenberg caused a storm in Holland when she draped a PLO flag from the balcony of her Amsterdam home and founded a group calling on Israel to withdraw from the territories. In November, she cancelled a planned trip to the territories, under pressure from the Israeli Foreign Ministry, which said that it considered her persona non grata.

Prior to the cancelled November trip Duisenberg said that she would meet with Israelis, but she has reversed that decision with regard to the present visit, and has even refused to stay in an Israeli hotel. She said Israelis could come to Holland to meet her.
I get it. She left a job in the Dutch space program to marry a banker and become Queen. Sad.
Shock Jock Alert!
And The joke's on President Chávez:
It was a practical joke that may have worked too well: Two Miami radio-show hosts known for playing outrageous pranks on the air got Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez on a private line this morning by pretending that Cuban leader Fidel Castro was calling him from Havana.

''We still can't believe it,'' said Enrique Santos, co-host of El Vacilón de la Mañana, (The Morning Joker), on WXDJ-FM El Zol 95.7, a Spanish-language salsa station. ``He fell for it.''

The station owner didn't, though, and the DJs were waiting today to find out what would happen.

The joke was part of a segment called Fidel Te Llama or ''Fidel's Calling You,'' in which Santos and his co-host, Joe Ferrero, call various people and play snippets of a controversial conversation between Castro and Mexican President Vicente Fox that Castro made public in 2001.

Hearing Castro's distinctive rasp, the unsuspecting recipients of the call usually believe it is the comandante himself on the phone. After a few minutes of a disjointed conversation in which the same nonsensical sentence fragments are repeated, the victims get suspicious.

Santos and Ferrero then drop the bombshell that it is a Miami radio station calling.

On Monday, Chávez, who counts Castro as his strongest ally and unabashedly touts Cuba's Communist system as a role model, fell victim to El Vacilón.
To do it right, they need an impressionist to do Fidel. Does Rich Little speak Spanish?
"Cool, Orcs!"
(Via Andrew Sullivan) Jonah Goldberg reviews the reviewers:
Sigh. Okay, yes, it's true. Many of the Orcs (and the super-Orcs) are dark-skinned and have slant-eyes. They are also - how shall I put this? - Orcs! Ya frickin' idjit!

One is tempted to ask who is the real racist here? On the one hand we have people - like me - who see horrific, flesh-eating, dull-witted creatures with jagged feral teeth, venomous mouths, pointed devilish ears, and reptilian skin, and say, "Cool, Orcs!" On the other hand we have people, like Mr. Yatt, who see the same repugnant creatures and righteously exclaim "black people!" Maybe he should spend less time vetting movies for signs of racism and more time vetting himself if, that is, he free-associates black people with these subhuman monsters.
Perhaps Mr. Yatt could be placated by a new villain?
You can't make this stuff up
Bill Quick finds a gem:
If she had lived, Mary Jo Kopechne would be 62 years old. Through his tireless work as a legislator, Edward Kennedy would have brought comfort to her in her old age.
My Desk Explained
(Via The Corner) - The Economist defends me with In praise of clutter. Best anecdote:
The most dramatic of these experiments took place at the offices of Chiat/Day, an American advertising agency. In 1993, Jay Chiat, the boss, had a revelation while on the ski slopes, and realised that his employees' minds were trapped by the boxes they were working in. Free their bodies from the box and you would free their minds. They were, accordingly, installed in offices without desks or filing cabinets. There were sofas to sit on and a few special rooms for meetings. There was nowhere to keep any paper; indeed, nobody was supposed to keep paper.

Chiat/Day's employees behaved like any group of refugees torn from familiar surroundings. They tried to rebuild their world. One woman bought a child's red wagon, put her paper files in it and trailed it around the corridors after her. Most people recreated their desks in the boots of their cars, where they stored their files and notebooks, dashing in and out of the building to the parking lot during meetings. Groups of workers took permanent control of meeting rooms and a shanty-town of desks grew up. The company was eventually bought by a traditionalist rival and normal life resumed.
No desks? Beware of epiphanies that come to you on the ski slopes.

Sunday, January 05, 2003

Mooning Myn Get in the Act Alert!
First it was the Marin womyn, now it's NAKED MEN, MEN OF PEACE
On December 21,2002, near Gainesville, Florida, 22 men posed naked to send a stunning Peace message to the American people and the war administration. Braving the cold, these men from Fort Myers to Gainesville, gathered together on a hillside to do the unthinkable: To Bare it all for Peace.
Zzzzz. It would have been better if they stood on their heads. No film at 11.
All Tuckered Out Alert!
Steve's back and has tales of the Western Desert:
I'm still too tired to write about it, but I can mention a few things before putting my head between my knees and reaching for more Tums. We stayed at the Mirage, in a room where mini-bar Cokes cost $3.75, but you can walk fifty feet to a vending machine and buy the same thing for a mere $2.50. We gambled for a total of 20 minutes, possibly due to the fact that my amazing three-digit IQ constantly reminds me that gambling is for idiots. On New Year's Eve, I had about seventy mai tais and charmed both halves of a nice lesbian couple, and I recall trying to teach one of them to merengue.
The way it used to work
Gareth Parker has an interesting reaction from some co-workers to the Australian illegal alien riots. That's the way it used to work in the USA too until the professional diversifiers arrived on the scene. The good professor had more on the Australian experience recently.