# March 2010 Archives

But *not* Steve.

## Holy Wednesday

Since John says this is the day it happened, here he is, or at least, his echo, unless the 'one Jesus loved' was really Mary M.  Note that it starts with the discrepancy (it was 'before' the passover feast--and note the whole absence of Jewish imagery in the description--unless they have some kind of foot-washing ceremony that I missed).  Note too that Judas is sent out, and they think he's going to get stuff for the feast.  Now, if they are eating the feast, why would it make sense to send Judas out (to do 'work') on Seder?

## John 13 (New International Version)

#### John 13

##### Jesus Washes His Disciples' Feet
1It was just before the Passover Feast. Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love.[a]

2The evening meal was being served, and the devil had already prompted Judas Iscariot, son of Simon, to betray Jesus. 3Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; 4so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. 5After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples' feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.

6He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, "Lord, are you going to wash my feet?"

7Jesus replied, "You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand."

8"No," said Peter, "you shall never wash my feet."
Jesus answered, "Unless I wash you, you have no part with me."

9"Then, Lord," Simon Peter replied, "not just my feet but my hands and my head as well!"

10Jesus answered, "A person who has had a bath needs only to wash his feet; his whole body is clean. And you are clean, though not every one of you." 11For he knew who was going to betray him, and that was why he said not every one was clean.

12When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. "Do you understand what I have done for you?" he asked them. 13"You call me 'Teacher' and 'Lord,' and rightly so, for that is what I am. 14Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another's feet. 15I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. 16I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. 17Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.

##### Jesus Predicts His Betrayal
18"I am not referring to all of you; I know those I have chosen. But this is to fulfill the scripture: 'He who shares my bread has lifted up his heel against me.'[b]

19"I am telling you now before it happens, so that when it does happen you will believe that I am He. 20I tell you the truth, whoever accepts anyone I send accepts me; and whoever accepts me accepts the one who sent me."

21After he had said this, Jesus was troubled in spirit and testified, "I tell you the truth, one of you is going to betray me."

22His disciples stared at one another, at a loss to know which of them he meant. 23One of them, the disciple whom Jesus loved, was reclining next to him. 24Simon Peter motioned to this disciple and said, "Ask him which one he means."

25Leaning back against Jesus, he asked him, "Lord, who is it?"

26Jesus answered, "It is the one to whom I will give this piece of bread when I have dipped it in the dish." Then, dipping the piece of bread, he gave it to Judas Iscariot, son of Simon. 27As soon as Judas took the bread, Satan entered into him.

"What you are about to do, do quickly," Jesus told him, 28but no one at the meal understood why Jesus said this to him. 29Since Judas had charge of the money, some thought Jesus was telling him to buy what was needed for the Feast, or to give something to the poor. 30As soon as Judas had taken the bread, he went out. And it was night.

##### Jesus Predicts Peter's Denial
31When he was gone, Jesus said, "Now is the Son of Man glorified and God is glorified in him. 32If God is glorified in him,[c] God will glorify the Son in himself, and will glorify him at once.

33"My children, I will be with you only a little longer. You will look for me, and just as I told the Jews, so I tell you now: Where I am going, you cannot come.

34"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another."

36Simon Peter asked him, "Lord, where are you going?"
Jesus replied, "Where I am going, you cannot follow now, but you will follow later."

37Peter asked, "Lord, why can't I follow you now? I will lay down my life for you."

38Then Jesus answered, "Will you really lay down your life for me? I tell you the truth, before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times!

Footnotes:
1. John 13:1 Or he loved them to the last
2. John 13:18 Psalm 41:9
3. John 13:32 Many early manuscripts do not have If God is glorified in him.
New International Version (NIV)

## Walter Noons Sent Me Some Pot Songs He Did

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Which I thought of as rather nice.

Here they are.  This first is "Marijuana (Green Prisoners)".  I've reported on many of these prisoners as they headed toward prison.

The second is "The Reason(s) I Get High".  I think it might be plagiarism, but I'll let that be your call on whether I'm just too picky.

## You Can Make a Difference (a request from Sting)

 Whether it's music, activism or daily life, the one ideal to which I have always aspired is constant challenge -- taking risks, stepping out of my comfort zone, exploring new ideas.I am writing because I believe the United States -- and all of us -- must do precisely that in the case of what has been the most unsuccessful, unjust yet untouchable issue in politics: the war on drugs.The war on drugs has failed -- but it's worse than that. It is actively harming our society. That is why ending the drug war is a matter of social justice. And it's why I hope you'll donate to the Drug Policy Alliance today.Violent crime is thriving in the shadows to which the drug trade has been consigned. People who genuinely need help can't get it. Neither can people who need medical marijuana to treat terrible diseases. We are spending billions, filling up our prisons with non-violent offenders and sacrificing our liberties.For too long, the war on drugs has been a sacrosanct undertaking that was virtually immune from criticism in the public realm. Politicians dared not disagree for fear of being stigmatized as "soft on crime." Any activist who spoke up was dismissed as a fringe element.But recently, I discovered just how much that's changing -- and that's how I came to speak out on behalf of the Drug Policy Alliance. Join me in supporting them with a donation today.I learned of DPA while reading what once might have been the unlikeliest of places for a thoughtful discussion, the Wall Street Journal.It featured an op-ed that dared to say in print -- in a thoughtful, meticulous argument -- what everyone who has seriously looked at the issue has known for years: the war on drugs is an absolute failure whose cost to society is increasingly unbearable and absolutely unjustifiable.Their work spoke directly to my heart as an activist for social justice -- because ending the war on drugs is about exactly that.To me, it all adds up to a clear message of exactly the sort I've always tried to heed in my life: It's time to step out of our comfort zone and try something new.That's where DPA comes in. Their focus is on reducing the harm drugs cause rather than obsessively and pointlessly attempting to ban them. I hope you'll assist their work by donating today.I'm partnering with DPA because they champion treatment, advocate effective curricula for educating young people about drugs -- and from local courtrooms to the Supreme Court, they are utterly relentless defenders of the liberties that have been sacrificed to the drug war.Now, political conditions in Washington seem finally to be aligning in favor of profound change in drug policy. But success is far from guaranteed. We must all work to ensure this issue becomes a priority and is acted upon in a meaningful and sensible way.That's why I hope you'll join me in becoming a member of the Drug Policy Alliance today. We are building a movement that will put the team at DPA in a position to take maximum advantage of the political changes in Washington while continuing to fight for sanity in drug policy across the nation.Everyone knows the war on drugs has failed. It's time to step out of our comfort zones, acknowledge the truth -- and challenge our leaders ... and ourselves ... to change.Sincerely,

# NETUREI KARTA HAS A SOLUTION TO THE MIDDLE-EAST PROBLEM

The world has suffered for decades from the unsolvable "Middle East and Palestine issue". Why hasn't anyone managed to solve the problem yet?

The root of the problem: The Palestinians want back the land that was robbed from them in 1948.The Israelis do not want to return it, claiming that it was "lawfully granted to them by the United Nations".

The existence of a "Jewish State" is a historical mistake, and it is an injustice that increasing numbers of people are no longer willing to accept. The Zionist "government" has forfeited its right to exist.

There is actually no longer a state, but only a "problem". An unsolvable Middle East problem, which threatens the entire world with destruction. The danger resulting from this problem may lead to the greatest catastrophe in human history, if we do not intervene.

The problem can only be solved peacefully and permanently, in our opinion, through the following simple steps:

1) The State of "Israel" must be dissolved. The UN decision of 1947 to partition Palestine and create the State of Israel must be recognized as a mistake, and undone.

2) The Palestinian people must take full sovereignty over the entire land of Palestine.

3) Jews who already live in Palestine may remain in the country under Palestinian rule, and may request that the Palestinians grant them equal citizenship.

4) Implementation: The UN should prepare laws that regulate the execution of the above process so that it should be as equitable, humane and painless as possible. A sufficiently long time must be allotted for the process to take place.

We have reached the point at which Jews and Arabs seem to have in common only their pent-up hatred against each other and longing for revenge. But they must try from now on to live together in mutual respect.

## Anti-Earache

Ok, another weird thing (like my face splitting open and exuding 'milia').

I've had a fever and 'pressure' in my ear now for at least eight hours.

The pressure doesn't yet build to pain.  I can feel the stuff flowing out my Eustachian Tube.

It's like my body is flushing out my left ear.

I was jokingly referring to lobster pegs, but when my left thumb split open and exuded one, (looked for real just like a 'peg', wedge shape and all), I had to mention it.

## Told You So ...

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'Scandal hidden in secret vaults'
 Pope Benedict XVI has been accused of failing to act on complaints from two archbishops in the US about a priest who allegedly abused 200 deaf boys [AFP]

Jeff Anderson is one of two lawyers representing five men in the US who have brought lawsuits against the Archdiocese of Milwaukee for failing to take action over cases of alleged child abuse in the church.

The case involves a number of documents including internal correspondence between bishops and the Vatican that claim to show Pope Benedict XVI, then a cardinal, failed to respond to letters warning him about a priest who may have molested 200 deaf boys.

 In video

According to media reports, an eventual church trial of the priest, Lawrence Murphy, was stopped due to his poor health.

The Vatican has said it did not defrock the priest because of his poor health and because there was no evidence of more recent allegations against him.

Anderson, in an interview with Al Jazeera, explains in detail how the case unfolded and what the implications could be for the Roman Catholic pope.

Al Jazeera: How did you get your hands on these documents?

Jeff Anderson: I had been representing [abuse] survivors suing Catholic bishops in the US for 25 years.

I demanded the documents [from the archdiocese in Milwaukee] and got court orders that required the church to produce them.

In 25 years of compelling the church to turn over documents, this is the first time I have actually received a trail which we knew existed and the documents demonstrate in themselves direct involvement and imposition of secrecy by the Vatican in an abuse case.

This is a direct trail of evidence that goes from the offender [Reverend Murphy] abusing 200 kids, to the Archbishop Weakland of Milwaukee, his direct superior.

Archbishop Weakland sought the guidance from the Vatican and contacted Cardinal Ratzinger to ask what to do.

The documents show cardinal Ratzinger's office told him to use secret protocol.

There is a document called Crimen Sollicitationis [Crime of Solicitation], which originally drew guidelines for how the church dealt with priests that used the confessional booth to solicit sex from parishioners, even the young.

All clerics were required to keep abuse secret and to impose secrecy on any laity which discovered the abuse.

Archbishop Weakland started secret protocol proceedings and when they learnt they could not keep that protocol secret they decided to do nothing and give the priest a free pass.

A decision was made in the papal office by Cardinal Ratzinger to give a free pass because they wanted to protect the reputation of the church at the peril of the children.

These documents and the body of evidence I have built up show this is a protocol and practice that has been in place and remains in place and has yet to been fully exposed.

Did you immediately realise the significance of this internal correspondence?

Yes. As soon as I got the documents. As breathtaking as they are, I wasn't surprised.

I realised significance immediately and thought it was best to get them out as soon as possible and in the best way possible which is why I have released them to TheNew York Times and put them before a court in Oregon.

Have you interacted much with the church during this case? What has their reaction been to the release of these letterss?

The issue has all been in and out of court. I do not know what reaction has been to these letters - they have not commented.

Who are you actually prosecuting in this case?

The case is involving the priest who abused over 200 children - Reverend Murphy. I do have a case against the Pope in Portland, Oregan and I have attached these documents in that case.

Could Pope Benedict be prosecuted for his alleged role in the Milwaukee Archdiocese?

Our hope is that children are protected and until the archbishops and the cardinal and the pope involved in these abuse cases hear a jail door clang behind them, they will continue to be complicit in these crimes.

Our hope is that they clean up but they are not going to get the message until they hear a jail door clang behind them.

They are as responsible as the offenders themselves. The offenders could not control themselves; their superiors could have controlled them.

Where does the Vatican's own system of justice stand within international law?

They have their own canon law which requires secrecy and requires any scandal to be hidden in secret vaults. They also have laws which say crimes against minors and crimes committed within confessional must be secret.

It is in gross violation of international law in any country because their own laws don't give regard to the harm to children.

All their protocols are designed to protect themselves and their reputations.

## Infowars.com

Alex Jones interviewed by CNN actually is worth listening to. Without an open-ended timeframe, he's succinct.

He's right, yano?  The truth is very much out there.  It was out there in OKC, it was there in Waco, and it's still there.

Just look up the Anderson Cooper stuff he mentions if you doubt it.  Wolf Blitzer worked for AIPAC, too.

What really makes me curious is why (given their track record) the majority of Americans 'trust' the major media, and consider Alex a nutjob.

If nothing else, go back and research the protests before the Iraq war started.  I reported on them on the air, but my (perhaps) two-hundred viewers aren't much of an audience.  The 'major' networks all reported (as did the papers) that there were 'small' protests.  Free Speech TV broadcast it live.  There were quite obviously over half a million people visible in NYC, and from the news it was clear that at least two thirds of the potential protesters were being kept from arriving by the cops.

These fuckers are lying through their teeth 24x7 to you.  It's not like it's 'FOX' that's the problem (they're just over the top).  All of them are doing it.

And they *know* that you are a bunch of  morons, yano?  It's not like *they* believe the shit they shovel out to you.

It's a pity that the cell-phone couldn't get the CNN questions.  Alex makes up for that though.

## Tears of Blood

Ok, this was *FREAKIN'* weird.

Last night, I feel what I think is sweat on my cheek, and I reach up to wipe it off, and it's BLOOD.

I look in the mirror and two of the wrinkles in my face have spontaneously self-destructed (cracked open and are leaking blood).

I have to assume they are going the way of the other wrinkles that did this (er, going 'away').

Still, it's weird, and it looked for real like I was crying blood in the mirror.

## A Ticket For Rush!

Help him make good on his pledge to leave the country if healthcare passed.  It's likely the most entertaining dollar you'll spend this year.

The story so far:

Commercial airfare refused.

Costa Rican cabin found and funded.

Spanish lessons priced and covered.

On our way towards chartering a jet.

## Literary Review: 'The Joyous Cosmology' By Alan Watts

'The Joyous Cosmology - Adventures in Chemical Consciousness', by British born philosopher Alan Watts, was originally published in 1962. Watts takes a variety of his psychedelic drug experiences and creates a single stream of consciousness that works together as if a single trip. The style is engaging, thoughtful and well constructed and retains much of his Zen influence.

In part, the book is a homage to Aldous Huxley's 'Doors of Perception'. However, the intervening years had proved fruitful for scientific research in psychedelics and Watts wass keen to extend the philosophical elements that Huxley had started exploring in light of these advances.

"While I cannot hope to surpass Aldous Huxley as a master of English prose, I feel that the time is ripe for an account of some of the deeper, or higher, levels of insight that can be reached through these consciousness-changing 'drugs'." Though there is a strong sense of 'each to their own expertise', Watts certainly attempts, in his own very personal style, to emulate and possibly surpass Huxley's mescaline account.

The book, which runs to about 100 pages, is split into three distinct sections. A prologue, the account of the subjective experience and an epilogue. The prologue opens with a broad philosophical discussion that frames the later subjective accounts, wherein he argues against Cartesian mind/body dualism and attempts to recast 'mind' as the formation of awareness/perception, not a 'ghost in the machine' as it were.

"Except where I am describing visions before closed eyes, and this is always specified, none of these experiences are hallucinations. They are simply changed ways of seeing, interpreting , and reacting to actual persons and events in the world of 'public reality.'" Essentially, Watts is demonstrating a subjective change, (the awareness has shifted through a change of perception,) the object ("public reality") remains unchanged in itself and no illusion is obscuring its nature; only opening it.

Unlike Aldous Huxley, who placed a lot of emphasis on the idea of space within his text, Watts' preference is initially an examination with time; especially in his descriptions of the 'onset of a drug'. The move from 'clock time' to 'biological time' is a shift in modality that resonates with Timothy Leary's writings on consciousness from the same period. It might be best described as the move from an external account of time to an interior one; an idea heavily influenced by Zen.

Watts retains a good deal of Huxley's model narrative but the language he employs is certainly indicative of his own influences: "In the type of experience I am describing, it seems that the superconscious method of thinking becomes conscious. We see the world as the whole body sees it, and for this very reason there is the greatest difficulty in attempting to translate this mode of vision into a form of language that is based in contrast and contradiction."

Interestingly, whilst "mind-at-large" has become "superconscious", the form is essentially the same idea/construct as Huxley used when he wrote about  "opening the antipodes"; the filter of the senses.

There's a constant recourse to 'the psychedelic experience' being an activity one is thrown into; thrust from an 'ordinary reality'; the over-objectified and narrow awareness of the everyday: "The manners and mores of Western civilisation force this perpetual sanity upon us to an extreme degree, for there is no accepted corner in our lives for the art of pure nonsense."

Like Leary's model of the psychedelic experience, this throwness becomes at first an anxiety that one most overcome, an idea that is vital for spiritual constructs in 1960s texts because of its association with the 'mystical experience'. The society of 'normal awareness' is repeatedly cited as the ultimate source for this anxiety - as a state of alienation and restriction, the delimitation of "Being".

'The Joyous Cosmology - Adventures in Chemical Consciousness' is both a wonderfully written subjective account of the 'psychedelic experience', by a very articulate individual and also a very interesting vehicle for Watt's philosophical, spiritual and religious understandings. Well worth a read from a number of standpoints and certainly a fine example of a psychedelic counter-culture text.

## Frank S.ent Clean Humor (pretty fucked up, eh?)

You may remember the old Jewish Catskill comics of Vaudeville days: Shecky Greene, Red Buttons, Myron Cohen, Totie Fields, Joey Bishop, Milton Berle, Jan Murray, Danny Kaye, Henny Youngman, Buddy Hackett, Sid Caesar, Groucho Marx, Jackie Mason, Victor Borge, Woody Allen, Joan Rivers, Lenny Bruce, George Burns, Allan Sherman, Jerry Lewis, Peter Sellers, Carl Reiner, Shelley Berman, Gene Wilder, George Jessel, Alan King,Mel Brooks, Phil Silvers, Jack Carter, Rodney Dangerfield, Don Rickles, Jack Benny and so many others. And there was not one single swear word in their comedy. Here are a few examples:

* I just got back from a pleasure trip. I took my mother-in-law to the airport.

* I've been in love with the same woman for 49 years! If my wife ever finds out, she'll kill me!

* What are three words a woman never wants to hear when she's making love? "Honey, I'm home!"

* Someone stole all my credit cards but I won't be reporting it. The thief spends less than my wife did.

* We always hold hands. If I let go, she shops.(cliff's favorite)

* My wife and I went back to the hotel where we spent our wedding night; only this time I stayed in the bathroom and cried.

* My wife and I went to a hotel where we got a waterbed. My wife called it the Dead Sea .

* She was at the beauty shop for two hours. That was only for the estimate. She got a mudpack and looked great for two days. Then the mud fell off.

* I was just in London ; there is a 6-hour time difference. I'm still confused. When I go to dinner, I feel sexy. When I go to bed, I feel hungry.

* The Doctor gave a man six months to live. The man couldn't pay his bill so the doctor gave him another six months.

* The Doctor called Mrs. Cohen saying, "Mrs. Cohen, your check came back. " Mrs. Cohen answered, "So did my arthritis!"

* Doctor: "You'll live to be 60!" Patient: "I am 60!" Doctor: "See! What did I tell you?"

* A doctor held a stethoscope up to a man's chest. The man asks, "Doc, how do I stand? " The doctor says, "That's what puzzles me!"

* Patient: "I have a ringing in my ears." Doctor: "Don't answer!"

* A drunk was in front of a judge. The judge says, "You've been brought here for drinking." The drunk says "Okay, let's get started."

* Why do Jewish divorces cost so much? They're worth it.

* Why do Jewish men die before their wives? They want to.

* The Harvard School of Medicine did a study of why Jewish women like Chinese food so much. The study revealed that this is due to the fact that Won Ton spelled backward is Not Now.

* There is a big controversy on the Jewish view of when life begins. In Jewish tradition, the fetus is not considered viable until it graduates from medical school.

Q: Why don't Jewish mothers drink? A: Alcohol interferes with their suffering.

Q: Have you seen the newest Jewish-American-Princess horror movie? A: It's called, 'Debbie Does Dishes'.

Q: Why do Jewish mothers make great parole officers? A: They never let anyone finish a sentence!

Q: What's a Jewish American Princess's favorite position? A: Facing Bloomingdale's.

* A man called his mother in Florida , "Mom, how are you?" " Not too good," said the mother. "I've been very weak." The son said, "Why are you so weak?" She said, "Because I haven't eaten in 38 days." The son said, "That's terrible. Why haven't you eaten in 38 days?" The mother answered, "Because I didn't want my mouth to be filled with food if you should call." (My Favorite)

* A Jewish boy comes home from school and tells his mother he has a part in the play. She asks, "What part is it?" The boy says, "I play the part of the Jewish husband." "The mother scowls and says, "Go back and tell the teacher you want a speaking part."

Q: Where does a Jewish husband hide money from his wife? A: Under the vacuum cleaner.

Q: How many Jewish mothers does it take to change a light bulb? A: (Sigh) "Don't bother. I'll sit in the dark. I don't want to be a nuisance to anybody."

* Short summary of every Jewish holiday: They tried to kill us. We won. Let's eat.

* Did you hear about the bum who walked up to a Jewish mother on the street and said, "Lady, I haven't eaten in three days." "Force yourself," she replied.

Q: What's the difference between a Rottweiler and a Jewish mother? A: Eventually, the Rottweiler lets go.

Q: Why are Jewish men circumcised? A: Because Jewish women don't like anything that Isn't 20% off.

## Frank S.ent another funny one

In 1986, Peter Davies was on holiday in Kenya after graduating from Northwestern University.

On a hike through the bush, he came across a young bull elephant standing with one leg raised in the air.

The elephant seemed distressed, so Peter approached it very carefully.

He got down on one knee, inspected the elephants foot, and found a large piece of wood deeply embedded in it.

As carefully and as gently as he could, Peter worked the wood out with his knifeafter which the elephant gingerly put down its foot.

The elephant turned to face the man, and with a rather curious look on its face, stared at him for several tense moments.

Peter stood frozen, thinking of nothing else but being trampled.

Eventually the elephant trumpeted loudly, turned, and walked away.

Peter never forgot that elephant or the events of that day.

Twenty years later, Peter was walking through the Chicago Zoo with his teenage son.

As they approached the elephant enclosure, one of the creatures turned and walked over to near where Peter and his son Cameron were standing.

The large bull elephant stared at Peter, lifted its front foot off the ground, then put it down.

The elephant did that several times then trumpeted loudly, all the while staring at the man.

Remembering the encounter in 1986, Peter could not help wondering if this was the same elephant.

Peter summoned up his courage, climbed over the railing, and made his way into the enclosure.

He walked right up to the elephant and stared back in wonder.

The elephant trumpeted again, wrapped its trunk around one of Peter legs and slammed him against the railing, killing him instantly.

Probably wasn't the same fucking elephant.

This is for everyone who sends me those heart-warming bullshit stories.

## Heh, it could as easily say, "Save Mendojuana County -- keep pot illegal"

Yeah, Frank S.ent it:

By Marcus Wohlsen

updated 3:25 p.m. PT, Wed., March. 24, 2010

REDWAY, Calif. - The smell of pot hung heavy in the air as men with dreadlocks and gray beards contemplated a nightmarish possibility in this legendary region of outlaw marijuana growers: legal weed.

If California legalizes marijuana, they say, it will drive down the price of their crop and damage not just their livelihoods but the entire economy along the state's rugged northern coast.

"The legalization of marijuana will be the single most devastating economic event in the long boom-and-bust history of Northern California," said Anna Hamilton, 62, a Humboldt Countyradio host and musician who said her involvement with marijuana has mostly been limited to smoking it for the past 40 years.

Local residents are so worried that pot farmers came together with officials in Humboldt County for a standing-room-only meeting Tuesday night where civic leaders, activists and growers brainstormed ideas for dealing with the threat. Among the ideas: turning the vast pot gardens of Humboldt County into a destination for marijuana aficionados, with tours and tastings -- a sort of Napa Valley of pot.

Many were also enthusiastic about promoting the Humboldt brand of pot. Some discussed forming a cooperative that would enforce high standards for marijuana and stamp the county's finest weed with an official Humboldt seal of approval.

Pot growers are nervous because a measure that could make California the first state to legalize marijuana for recreational use could appear on the ballot in November. It appears to have enough signatures.

The law, if approved, could have a profound effect on Humboldt County, which has long had a reputation for growing some of the world's best weed.

In recent years, law enforcement agents have seized millions of pot plants worth billions of dollars in Humboldt and neighboring counties. And that is believed to be only a fraction of the crop.

"We've lived with the name association for 30 or 40 years and considered it an embarrassment," said Mark Lovelace, a Humboldt County supervisor.

Time to brand Humboldt?
But if legalization does happen, he said, the Humboldt County name becomes the region's single most important asset.

"It's laughable at this point to try to be hush-hush about it," he said.

Humboldt County's reputation as a marijuana mecca began in the 1970s. As pot users began to notice a decline in the quality of Mexican weed, refugees from San Francisco's Summer of Love who moved to the forested mountains along California's conveniently remote North Coast began figuring out better ways to grow their own. The Humboldt name soon became a selling point for marijuana sold on street corners across the country.

These days, the small towns in this region about five hours north of San Francisco are dotted with head shops and garden supply stores.

California is one of 14 states that allow people to grow and use marijuana for medical purposes, but recreational use remains illegal. (And will remain illegal under federal law, regardless of how California votes.)

For decades, the outlaws, rebels and aging hippies of Humboldt County have been hoping for legalization. But now that it appears at hand, many clandestine growers fear it will flood the market with cheap, corporate-grown weed and destroy their way of life.

About 20 pot growers gathered on a patio outside the meeting Tuesday to discuss the dilemma posed by legalized pot. Many wore baseball caps and jeans, just like farmers anywhere else in America. No one addressed anyone else by name, a local custom driven by fear of arrest, but that didn't stop some in the group from lighting up their crop.

Talk of 'the holy bud'
Many complained that legalization would put them in the same bind as other small farmers struggling to compete against large-scale agribusinesses.

A dreadlocked younger grower who said he had already been to prison for marijuana objected that no one could replicate the quality of the region's weed. When he was a kid, he said, "Humboldt nuggets -- that was like the holy grail."

"Anyone can grow marijuana," he said. "But not everyone can grow the super-heavies, the holy bud."

Under the ballot measure, Californians could possess up to one ounce of marijuana for personal use. They could cultivate gardens up to 25 square feet, which is puny by Humboldt County standards. City and county governments would have the power to tax pot sales.

Some growers Tuesday fantasized about mobs of tourists in limos streaming to the county. Others were not thrilled with the idea of paying taxes on their crop.

Many agreed with the sentiment on a sticker plastered on a pizza joint's cash register: "Save Humboldt County -- keep pot illegal."

## Not Feeling Well? Perhaps You're 'Marijuana Deficient'

##### By Paul Armentano, AlterNetPosted on March 24, 2010, Printed on March 24, 2010http://www.alternet.org/story/146151/

For several years I have postulated that marijuana is not, in the strict sense of the word, an intoxicant.

As I wrote in the book Marijuana Is Safer: So Why Are We Driving People to Drink?(Chelsea Green, 2009), the word 'intoxicant' is derived from the Latin noun toxicum(poison). It's an appropriate term for alcohol, as ethanol (the psychoactive ingredient in booze) in moderate to high doses is toxic (read: poisonous) to healthy cells and organs.

Of course, booze is hardly the only commonly ingested intoxicant. Take the over-the-counter painkiller acetaminophen (Tylenol). According to the Merck online medical library, acetaminophen poisoning and overdose is "common," and can result in gastroenteritis (inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract) "within hours" and hepatotoxicity (liver damage) "within one to three days after ingestion." In fact, less than one year ago the U.S. Food and Drug Administration called for tougher standards and warnings governing the drug's use because "recent studies indicate that unintentional and intentional overdoses leading to severe hepatotoxicity continue to occur."

By contrast, the therapeutically active components in marijuana -- the cannabinoids -- appear to be remarkably non-toxic to healthy cells and organs. This notable lack of toxicity is arguably because cannabinoids mimic compounds our bodies naturally produce -- so-called endocannabinoids -- that are pivotal for maintaining proper health and homeostasis.

In fact, in recent years scientists have discovered that the production of endocannabinoids (and their interaction with the cannabinoid receptors located throughout the body) play a key role in the regulation of proper appetiteanxiety controlblood pressurebone massreproduction, and motor coordination, among other biological functions.

Just how important is this system in maintaining our health? Here's a clue: In studies of mice genetically bred to lack a proper endocannabinoid system the most common result is premature death.

Armed with these findings, a handful of scientists have speculated that the root causeof certain disease conditions -- including migraine, fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome, and other functional conditions alleviated by clinical cannabis -- may be an underlying endocannabinoid deficiency.

Now, much to my pleasant surprise, Fox News Health columnist Chris Kilham has weighed in on this important theory.

Are You Cannabis Deficient?
via Fox News

If the idea of having a marijuana deficiency sounds laughable to you, a growing body of science points at exactly such a possibility.

... [Endocannabinoids] also play a role in proper appetite, feelings of pleasure and well-being, and memory. Interestingly, cannabis also affects these same functions. Cannabis has been used successfully to treat migraine, fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome and glaucoma. So here is the seventy-four thousand dollar question. Does cannabis simply relieve these diseases to varying degrees, or is cannabis actually a medical replacement in cases of deficient [endocannabinoids]?

... The idea of clinical cannabinoid deficiency opens the door to cannabis consumption as an effective medical approach to relief of various types of pain, restoration of appetite in cases in which appetite is compromised, improved visual health in cases of glaucoma, and improved sense of well being among patients suffering from a broad variety of mood disorders. As state and local laws mutate and change in favor of greater tolerance, perhaps cannabis will find it's proper place in the home medicine chest.

Perhaps. Or maybe at the very least society will cease classifying cannabis as a 'toxic' substance when its more appropriate role would appear to more like that of a supplement.

Paul Armentano is the deputy director of NORML (the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws), and is the co-author of the book Marijuana Is Safer: So Why Are We Driving People to Drink (2009, Chelsea Green).

## Absolutely Fabulous!

The Honda commercial just got beat (by a mile).

On top of the award for best Rube Goldberg machine, ever, there should be some kind of award for the videography, which seems to be done in one take.

## Weirdest Freakin' Thing

So, my (left) sphenoidal sinus appears to have exuded something today.
It was greenish brown (and kinda hard and crusty) at the outset, then greenish yellow for the most of the day.

I feel much better now that whatever it was is gone.  I think it's the first time it's been gone, ever.

It feels really *clean* in there.

That's where the migraines came from, yano?

Maybe the right one will blow, too.

## Another Shortcoming ...

Yeah, while the rest of the world uses that terribly handy and easy-to-comprehend metric system, we still use the English system of weights and measures, fershure.

But did you know that our paper sizes are similarly archaic?

It's the International Standards Organization specification for paper size.  It's a mix of metric and math.  Basically, it's defining an 'A0,A1,A2,..." and "B0..." and "C0..." sequence of sizes for paper (and envelopes, the "C" series).

An A1 page is an A0 page cut in half, and so on, and so on.  A C0 envelope holds an A0 sheet.

The underlying principle is that when folded in half length-wise the paper retains its original aspect ratio: $\scriptstyle (1:\sqrt{2})$.

B0 is the same theory, but it's one meter on the long side, as opposed to one 'square' meter of area as A0 is defined.

It's kind of a pity they chose the layout they did on the Wiki page.  If they'd merely gone towards the center, instead of the upper-left corner, as they reduced the size, it would be more clearly the Fibonacci sequence (a nautilus shell shape).

## While America Passes on Single Payer HealthCare, Venezuela Expands Single Payer Pantries

So, how again is it that this 'dictator' gets re-elected over and over, in spite of the fact that the rich and powerful have tried again and again, politically and by force of arms, to unseat him?

Venezuela's Chavez Announces Expansion of Government Subsidised Food System

Caracas, March 19, 2010 (venezuelanalysis.com) - In a nationally televised address Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez announced a massive expansion of the government's subsidised food system, Mercal, on Thursday. He also argued that it is necessary to establish a socialist system of distribution and consumption of products, to replace the capitalist market.

In order to strengthen the program, which currently benefits 10.7 million Venezuelans, a total of 1.4 billion bolivares will be invested through the food ministry. With the expansion the program will immediately reach 11.5 million beneficiaries, and up to 12 million in the near future the president told residents of San Francisco municipality, El Silencio, in Zulia state where he inaugurated the El Silencio Communal Mercalito.

Mercal will increase its total monthly quantity of food distributed from 100 thousand tonnes, to 110 thousand tonnes - a seven percent increase.

To achieve this goal Chavez said a further 1,221 Mercal establishments would be opened around the country, 94 of which were inaugurated on Thursday. The new Mercal establishments will include increased storage facilities as well as new stores and "Communal Mercals."

"The cold storage capacity, that is, refrigerators, will go from 5,000 to 7,000 tons, while the dry storage capacity will increase from 66,700 to 70,400 tonnes," he said.

Chavez also insisted in community participation to ensure accountability and transparency. "We must create a different system to the market, a humane distribution and consumption system, because the market will always be capitalist," he explained.
He emphasised that the country is going through a transition stage, "The Mission Mercal is being transformed, we are creating a socialist system of distribution and consumption to satisfy the nutritional needs of the people," he said.
Chavez stressed that the capitalist market is "the cause of inflation and hunger ", and argued that this reality must be changed saying that the people should be the owners of the land and the produce.

"This is the solution, there is no piecemeal solution. If it's not integral, it's not a solution. We must have solutions to all parts of the production chain," he added.

According to figures of the United Nations Organization for Food and Agriculture more than 1 billion people around the world are hungry, and world hunger increased by more than fifty million people in 2009 as a result of the global capitalist crisis he pointed out.

"While hunger increases in the world, it is almost nonexistent in Venezuela," he said.

"This is called social justice. Here up to 15 years ago people died of hunger...that no longer happens here," he said.

## There Was Never Really Any Question ...

The California Supreme Court decided to go with the precedent set by the Magna Carta rather than void that principle in pursuit of the drug war.

In short, they found that if the CUA (Compassionate Use Act) made no 'limit' other than 'personal use' the legislature could *NOT* put a number there (in this case, six plants).

Of course, it has given the drug warriors two more years of fucking with sick people.

The case of the People v. Kelly

The Compassionate Use Act:

## Proposition 215: Text of Proposed Law

This initiative measure is submitted to the people in accordance with the provisions of Article II, Section 8 of the Constitution.

This initiative measure adds a section to the Health and Safety Code; therefore, new provisions proposed to be added are printed in italic type to indicate that they are new.

PROPOSED LAW

SECTION 1. Section 11362.5 is added to the Health and Safety Code, to read:
11362.5. (a) This section shall be known and may be cited as the Compassionate Use Act of 1996.
(b)(1) The people of the State of California hereby find and declare that the purposes of the Compassionate Use Act of 1996 are as follows:
(A) To ensure that seriously ill Californians have the right to obtain and use marijuana for medical purposes where that medical use is deemed appropriate and has been recommended by a physician who has determined that the person's health would benefit from the use of marijuana in the treatment of cancer, anorexia, AIDS, chronic pain, spasticity, glaucoma, arthritis, migraine, or any other illness for which marijuana provides relief.
(B) To ensure that patients and their primary caregivers who obtain and use marijuana for medical purposes upon the recommendation of a physician are not subject to criminal prosecution or sanction.
(C) To encourage the federal and state governments to implement a plan to provide for the safe and affordable distribution of marijuana to all patients in medical need of marijuana.
(2) Nothing in this section shall be construed to supersede legislation prohibiting persons from engaging in conduct that endangers others, nor to condone the diversion of marijuana for nonmedical purposes.
(c) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no physician in this state shall be punished, or denied any right or privilege, for having recommended marijuana to a patient for medical purposes.
(d) Section 11357, relating to the possession of marijuana, and Section 11358, relating to the cultivation of marijuana, shall not apply to a patient, or to a patient's primary caregiver, who possesses or cultivates marijuana for the personal medical purposes of the patient upon the written or oral recommendation or approval of a physician.
(e) For the purposes of this section, ''primary caregiver" means the individual designated by the person exempted under this section who has consistently assumed responsibility for the housing, health, or safety of that person.

SEC. 2. If any provision of this measure or the application thereof to any person or circumstance is held invalid, that invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications of the measure that can be given effect without the invalid provision or application, and to this end the provisions of this measure are severable.

## How the People in My District Got Stupak to Change His Mind-and Thus Saved the Health Care Bill

by Michael Moore

From: OpEdNews.com

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

Friends,

Well, our full court press on my congressman, Bart Stupak worked! Hundreds of my neighbors here in hisMichigan district spent the weekend organizing thousands of voters to get busy and save the health care bill. We called Stupak's congressional office non-stop and we got thousands of people up here to flood his email box.

And then a rare thing happened: An elected representative did what the people told him to do. It was nothing short of amazing.

Stupak, and his seven "right to life" Democrats who had said they would vote against the bill, reversed themselves after what Stupak said Sunday afternoon was a week of his staff having "really taken a pounding." Hey, all we did here in northern Michigan was let him know that we would be unceremoniously tossing him out of Congress in this August's Democratic primary. One of our group announced she would oppose him in the Dem primary. That seemed toregister with him.

All of this made Stupak look pretty worn down at his press conference yesterday, pleading with people like us to stop calling his house and waking his wife "at two or three in the morning." Hey! That's not us. We never call during Carson Daly!

Obama needed 216 votes in the House last night -- and he barely got them (219 was the final number). Had Stupak not done a 180 in the last 24 hours, the health care bill would have gone down in flames. Thank you, to all of you here in northern Michigan who did what had to be done. You and you alone saved this bill in the final moments.

Stupak stood on the floor of the House last night and, in a surreal moment, spoke against the "Stupak Amendment"! Once he got through his medieval meanderings about where babies come from, he gave one helluva speech.

And, that's when Republican congressman Randy Neugebauer of Texas shouted out: "Baby killer!" Wow. I guess the fertilized egg police felt betrayed by Bart.

Those of us here in Michigan will now decide what to do about our misguided congressman. We're a forgiving lot, but maybe not this time. We shall see.

Bart, I'm glad you discovered you didn't have a uterus. And, like the scarecrow, I'm glad you found a bit of your brain.

A good night it was -- important little steps were taken to bring our country into the civilized world.

Now, we have some real work to do if we really want to say we have universal health care. The sharks who run the insurance companies have every intention of turning this lemon into some very profitable lemonade.

P.S. Someday, the Hyde Amendment is going to have to go. No Democratic president should ever agree to anything that discriminates against women.

## Hair on The Palms of The Hands?

So my friend Pete came by last night, and I was mentioning to him all the weird shit that was going on, and (as it happened), there was one of the little black dot/splinter things coming out of the palm of my hand.

So I showed him picking it out like a splinter with a tweezer, and it had a little white hair/filament  that came out with it.  I could feel it pulling out of my hand like it was a hair.

This morning, the skin around where it came out was all dry and hard, and when I scratched it, it came out and left a little pock in the palm of my hand where it was.

## Kinda fun nite

I had a friend in from ABQ.  I got to show him one of the 'splinters' coming out of my hand.

It had a 'thread' of what looked like cotton hanging off it as I pulled it out with a tweezer.

He kinda freaked.  Yano, it's just not normal.

Still, I just paint what I see.

'I shot my wad' comes from the old days of musket guns, where a wad (strips of cloth) was packed down in the barrel to create a seal between the gunpowder and the bullet (increasing the internal pressure when the gunpowder fired and speeding the bullet).

When soldiers ran out of bullets, they would resort to "shooting their wad".

If you remember, the wad of a blank pistol round is what killed Bruce Lee's son during the filming of a movie.

From a note at 'blurtit.com'.

## Heh, heh.

10:39 UK time, Thursday, 18 March 2010

In a pastoral letter to Irish Catholics, he acknowledged the sense of betrayal in the Church felt by victims and their families and expressed "shame and remorse".

The Pope said those guilty of abuse must "answer before God and properly constituted tribunals for the sinful and criminal actions they have committed".

The letter addressed only the scandal in Ireland, not the other cases of abuse which have recently come to light in other countries across Europe, including in the pope's native Germany.

Is the Catholic Church doing enough to address these child abuse scandals? Does the Pope's letter go far enough? How has he handled the situation?

## Heh

LONDON, March 2 (UPI) -- More intelligent children may be more likely to grow up to be liberals, a researcher at the London School of Economics and Political Science suggests.

Satoshi Kanazawa, an evolutionary psychologist, says "evolutionarily novel" preferences and values are those that humans are not biologically designed to have and our ancestors probably did not possess. In contrast, those that our ancestors had for millions of years are "evolutionarily familiar."

Kanazawa argues that humans are evolutionarily designed to be conservative, caring mostly about their family and friends, and being liberal -- caring about an indefinite number of genetically unrelated strangers one has never meet or interacted with -- is evolutionarily novel.

Data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health support Kanazawa's hypothesis. Young adults who subjectively identify themselves as "very liberal" have an average IQ of 106 during adolescence while those who identify themselves as "very conservative" have an average IQ of 95 during adolescence, Kanazawa says.

Young adults who identify themselves as "not at all religious" have an average IQ of 103 during adolescence, while those who identify themselves as "very religious" have an average IQ of 97 during adolescence, Kanazawa says.

The preference for sexual exclusivity correlated with higher intelligence, the study says.

The findings are published in the journal Social Psychology Quarterly.

## Too Freakin' Funny

So, I was doing some homework this am (learning how to make an embedded 'data' type work in the page itself, as so:  (red dot graphic is actually IN the HTML, if you were to examine it).

I came across a reference to it being part of the 'Acid Test 3' product.  My new machine got 100%.

I sent it to my supervisor, and he sent me back his Internet Explorer 8 results:

## Underlying the Gay Marriage Issue

Is another, unspoken one.  While it's ridiculous to think that anybody affiliated with the right-wing nutjobs would ever take advantage of a change in the laws to marry someone of their own gender, there's another precedent that is attractive to them that recent SCOTUS rulings make possible.

Yes, if marriage is open to all 'persons', one could conceivably marry a corporation now that corporations are people too.

## Antagonish, by William Hughes Mearns

Yesterday upon the stair
I met a man who wasn't there
He wasn't there again today
Oh, how I wish he'd go away
When I came home last night at three
The man was waiting there for me
But when I looked around the hall
I couldn't see him there at all!
Go away, go away, don't you come back any more!
Go away, go away, and please don't slam the door
Last night I saw upon the stair
A little man who wasn't there
He wasn't there again today
Oh, how I wish he'd go away

## Jesse Ventura Censored by Huffington Post

By Muriel Kane
Friday, March 12th, 2010

Former Minnesota governor and one-time professional wrestler Jesse Ventura has run afoul of the Huffington Post's no-conspiracy-theory policy, and he's not happy about it.

"I can't believe the Huffington Post today will practice censorship," Ventura says in astonishment. "I've got news for them. ... I won't ever write for 'em again."

Ventura had posted an item on Tuesday which took note of a recent conference at which "more than one thousand architects and engineers signed a petition demanding that Congress begin a new investigation into the destruction of the World Trade Center skyscrapers on 9/11." He also quoted a few paragraphs from his new book, American Conspiracies, to explain why some of those experts see signs of controlled demolition.

The item was featured on the front page of Huffington Post when it first went up, but after a few hours it vanished. All that appears now at its original location is an editor's note saying, "The Huffington Post's editorial policy, laid out in our blogger guidelines, prohibits the promotion and promulgation of conspiracy theories -- including those about 9/11. As such, we have removed this post."

The note is followed by three pages of comments, enthusiastically arguing the pros and cons of controlled demolition and other 9/11 theories, that were posted during the couple of hours before the entry was deleted and comments were closed.

Huffington Post's own guidelines for its bloggers state, "We must -- and do -- reserve the right to remove objectionable, inaccurate, or inflammatory material and, if necessary, suspend or revoke blogging privileges. This also includes propagating conspiracy theories and blogging about behind-the-scenes housekeeping issues that are not of interest to the general public."

Anastasia Churkina, a correspondent for RT, interviewed Ventura about the controversy. "He's a man who doesn't mince his words too much," she reported on Thursday. "He was pretty blunt."

"I can't believe the Huffington Post today will practice censorship," Ventura told her angrily. "They asked me to be a contributing editor and they said, 'Write about anything you want.' So it was the second time I did something -- and they removed it?"

"Well, I've got news for them," he continued. "I won't ever write for 'em again. ... I won't do a thing for the Huffington Post because I don't like it when people censor what I have to say."

"All I do is ask questions!" he exploded. "That's what bugs me about 9/11. 9/11 is an event you're not allowed to ask a question about. ... Clearly they don't want any questions on it."

Ironically, Ventura had to go to RT, the English-language version of a Russian news channel, to tell his story. Although polls show that large numbers of Americans believe in a broad range of conspiracy theories, and a majority entertain doubts about the official story of 9/11, few of those questions ever appear in the mainstream media.

As Raw Story recently reported , "In November of 2007, an online article noted, 'Nearly two-thirds of Americans think it is possible that some federal officials had specific warnings of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, but chose to ignore those warnings, according to a Scripps Howard News Service/Ohio University poll.' A national survey of 811 adult residents of the United States conducted by Scripps and Ohio University found that more than a third believe in a broad smorgasbord of conspiracy theories including the attacks, international plots to rig oil prices, the plot to assassinate President John F. Kennedy in 1963 and the government's knowledge of intelligent life from other worlds. The high percentage is a manifestation, some say, of an American public that increasingly distrusts the federal government."

Even liberal websites, however, discourage questions about 9/11, to the point where BooMan of the Booman Tribune had to preface a post at Daily Kos in 2005 by writing "I know this touches on verboten conspiracy theories, but this is a front-page NYT article."

"It's kind of hard to tell whether or not a new investigation will be launched," Churkina concluded. "Many people don't think this is going to be happening any time soon, even with such public figures, like Jesse Venture and other, calling for it."

## Geez, what a freakin' day

Ok, so I wake up and I've forgotten to reset my alarm clock for DST, I've got perhaps the worst allergic reaction (ever) going on, and I'm nearly late for jury duty when I wake up.

Not a good morning to find that my machine can't find it's hard drive, no?

So, I'm now the somewhat reluctant owner of a brand-new iMac.  It rocks, but it sucks the way it got deployed.

I'm still finding my way around the dinky keyboard, and the multi-touch mouse is fun, but hard to use on some motions at this point.

## Secretary

OMG.

So the girlz on OkCupid.com had (to a man) supported the 'sex scenes' in this movie.

Now, this is a *hot* flick. I'm not bitching about that.  One can have ever so many fantasies from the visuals.

I'm just wondering how many of the 'weaker sex' are actually that intent on being dominated.

I mean, all those years, all those Cosmos I read, all tended to indicate you folks wanted oral sex, and that, before penetration

If I'd known that you really just wanted to be spanked brutally, and then bathed, I'd have taken a different approach, yano?

I think that perhaps that that gender has some kind of gender-based tongue-twistedness that prevents it's proper expression.

So, c'mon girlz, what's up?

## We all Know, "It's My Party, And I'll Cry if I Want To"

But it's got a *SEQUEL*!!!

'Cause now it's Judy's turn to cry,
Judy's turn to cry,
Judy's turn to cry,
'Cause Johnny's come back to me.

Oh, when Judy left with Johnny at my party
And came back wearing his ring
I sat down and cried my eyes out,
Now that was a foolish thing!

'Cause now it's Judy's turn to cry,
Judy's turn to cry,
Judy's turn to cry,
'Cause Johnny's come back to me.

Well, it hurt me so to see them dance together,
I felt like making a scene.
Then my tears just fell like raindrops
'Cause Judy's smile was so mean.

But now it's Judy's turn to cry,
Judy's turn to cry,
Judy's turn to cry,
'Cause Johnny's come back to me.

(Instrumental Break)

Oh, one night I saw them kissin' at a party,
So I kissed some other guy.
Johnny jumped up and he hit him,
'Cause he still loved me, that's why.

So now it's Judy's turn to cry,
Judy's turn to cry,
Judy's turn to cry,
'Cause Johnny's come back to me.

Yay, now it's Judy's turn to cry,
Judy's turn to cry,
Judy's turn to cry...

## Dunno if you recall ...

But back before we invaded Iraq, when we were looking at what we'd already done in Afghanistan, some 'odd' facts popped out regarding some original negotiations with the Taliban (prior to 9/11) regarding an oil pipeline (they were good with the plan, but wanted a higher percentage of the take).  VP Dick Cheney was reported to have told them in August of 2001, "You take our carpet of gold or we'll send a carpet of bombs."

Nearly immediately after the Afghan invasion, Mr. Karzai (a former CIA contact) was put in charge of the country, a position he continues to fill.   While it appears that the story that he was a former Unocal consultant was incorrect, it's true that our ambassador there was.

In any case, the pipeline originally described is being built, and in this article by Bruce Gagnon, it's clear that in spite of the fact that the instability in Afghanistan is on the other end of the country, we are building infrastructure that is *right* on top of the pipeline.

# CENTRAL ASIA PIPELINE PLAN BEGINS TO EMERGE

By Bruce K. Gagnon (about the author)     Page 1 of 1 page(s)

The Washington Post today introduces us this morning to a controversy over Afghanistan war strategy. The Post reports that operations in Delaram (in the southwest) are "far from a strategic priority for senior officers at the international military headquarters in Kabul. One calls Delaram, a day's drive from the nearest city, 'the end of the Earth.' Another deems the area 'unrelated to our core mission' of defeating the Taliban by protecting Afghans in their cities and towns."

Why then are the Marines fighting in this part of the country?

## Heh, someone else noticed...

I tell you, once you see the differences, and the implications, it's a far better theory to consider that it's perhaps a 'present' from someone older and wiser (hoping to get some other wiser critters wising up).

The odds that a rock swirling about us in space is going to be exactly the same diameter as our primary star are just too ludicrous to consider, given the possibilities.  It's far more likely that Slartibartfast put it there.

# Rachel Corrie's Family Finally Puts Israel in the Dock

By JONATHAN COOK
http://www.counterpunch.com/cook03112010.html
Seven years after Rachel Corrie, a US peace activist, was killed by an Israeli army bulldozer in Gaza, her family was to put the Israeli government in the dock today.

A judge in the northern Israeli city of Haifa was due to be presented with evidence that 23-year-old Corrie was killed unlawfully as she stood in the path of the bulldozer, trying to prevent it from demolishing Palestinian homes in Rafah.

Corrie's parents, Craig and Cindy, who arrived in Israel on Saturday, said they hoped their civil action would shed new light on their daughter's killing and finally lead to Israel's being held responsible for her death. They are also seeking damages that could amount to millions of dollars if the court finds in their favour.

An internal army investigation was closed shortly after Corrie's death, exonerating both the bulldozer driver and the commanders who oversaw the operation.

Three Britons and one US citizen, who were standing close to Corrie when she was killed, are expected to challenge Israel's version of events, arguing that the bulldozer driver knew Corrie was there when he ran her over.

The Israeli government had sought to block the activists from entering Israel for the hearing but finally relented three weeks ago, when Britain and the US exerted strong pressure.

The four, like Corrie, belonged to the International Solidarity Movement (ISM), which brings activists to Israel to resist the occupation non-violently alongside Palestinians.

Cindy Corrie, from Olympia, Washington, said: "My family and I are still searching for justice. The brutal death of my daughter should never have happened. We believe the Israeli army must be held accountable for her unlawful killing."

For many observers, Rachel Corrie's death in March 2003 rapidly came to symbolise the injustices of Israel's occupation. Diary entries, many of them written while she was living with Palestinian families, were adapted into a play that has been performed around the world.

However, as one Israeli commentator noted in the liberal daily newspaper Haaretz on the first anniversary of her death: "In Israel, her name has been all but forgotten."

Corrie's family hopes the court case will rectify that.

Rachel, a film released last year about her life and the events in Rafah, is due to be screened in Tel Aviv on March 16, on the seventh anniversary of her death and in the midst of the legal proceedings.

Until the court case in Haifa, the Corrie family had run into a series of administrative and legal brick walls in trying to get their daughter's death independently investigated and to hold those responsible to account.

Ariel Sharon, the Israeli prime minister at the time of Corrie's death, promised a "thorough, credible and transparent investigation" would be conducted.

But an internal military inquiry clearing the two soldiers operating the bulldozer was widely criticised, including by US officials. Human Rights Watch said it "fell far short of the transparency, impartiality and thoroughness required by international law".

The army's report claimed that Corrie had been "hidden from view" behind a mound of earth and that the bulldozer had never come into contact with her. It concluded that "Corrie was struck by dirt and a slab of concrete" as earth slipped on top of her.

The four former ISM activists due to appear in court this week have been told not to comment before giving their testimonies.

But previous witness statements, backed by photographic evidence, have questioned the army's account. Photographs show Corrie, wearing an orange fluorescent jacket and holding a megaphone, confronting the bulldozer over several hours. They also show the bulldozer's track marks over Corrie's body moments after she was crushed.

Tom Dale, a British activist who was next to Corrie when she was killed, wrote two days later that she had climbed on top of a mound of earth as activists nearby shouted at the bulldozer driver to stop.

The bulldozer, he wrote, "pushed Rachel, first beneath the scoop, then beneath the blade, then continued till her body was beneath the cockpit. They waited over her for a few seconds, before reversing. They reversed with the blade pressed down, so it scraped over her body a second time."

In 2007 a US court denied the Corrie family the right to sue the Caterpillar company, which supplies the Israeli army with the special D-9 bulldozers that killed their daughter and that Israel regularly uses to demolish Palestinian homes.

This week's hearing is the outcome of a private lawsuit filed by the Corries in March 2005, at the suggestion of the US state department.

Mrs Corrie said: "We hope this trial will also illustrate the need for accountability for thousands of lives lost, or indelibly injured, by the Israeli occupation and bring attention to the assault on non-violent human-rights defenders."

Mr Corrie added that the family had had to endure "lies and misrepresentations" about the circumstances of their daughter's death. The family also accused Israel of resorting to procedural delays to drag the case out.

Although Israel has agreed to let in the four ISM witnesses, it has refused to allow Ahmed Abu Nakira, a doctor in Gaza who treated Corrie, to attend the hearing or to be questioned over a video link.

The lawsuit accuses the Israeli government of being responsible either for Corrie's intentional killing or for the negligent conduct of its soldiers towards unarmed demonstrators.

Israel claims it is not liable because the army's actions were "acts of war" and because Corrie recklessly endangered herself.

Around the time Corrie was killed, three Britons -- Iain Hook, Tom Hurndall and James Millar -- were fatally shot by Israeli soldiers. Only in the case of Hurndall, another ISM volunteer who was shot in Rafah a month after Corrie, did an investigation lead to a soldier being found guilty and jailed.

## For Carlos Pollo

He mentioned liking seeing the fog rolling over the mountains. Here's some through fresh pear blossoms.

## One of the better versions

There are better stage productions, but this one seems to have the best audio, and a decent cast (even if they are squashed up onto a tiny stage, as is often the case with this production).

It's got some of the best puns in it I'd heard in a long time.

## Over The Top

Howard Crabtree's "When Pigs Fly" is one of the better musicals (in general) I've run across.  It's witty and well written, and it's terribly funny (at least the version I saw presented in Albuquerque).  In any case, I've looked for lyrics to the grand finale for some years, and though I remembered the CD had a fat booklet, even it didn't have them.  So I typed them in by hand:

Over the Top
by Howard Crabtree

There's a place I've dreamed about

How to get there, who can say?

There's no map to show the way.

It's waiting somewhere off the scale,

around the bend, beyond the pale

Over the top,

I want to go over the top.

I'm ready to pack up and move

to the place I can prove

I don't know when to stop.

I'm gonna stake my claim

where it's never the 'same old, same old'.

Should I  just stay put,

and paint by numbers?

Don't insult me, catapult me ...

Over the top.

I want to be more than ok.

I want to relocate my base

to that magical place

I can go all the way.

I'll build my castle in the air,

and that's where I'll set up shop,

when I'm o-o-o-o-o-over the top.

I want to find the spot

where all that you've got is accepted.

Will the compromisers overtake me?

They can't lick me, just drop-kick me ...

Over the top.

I want to be one of a kind.

I want to create a display

that makes everyone say

that I'm out of my mind.

When you give your all to just one dream

make sure it's the cream of the crop!

Take it o-o-o-o-o-over the top!

## Tensegrity

Lovely word.  It's the name for all those weird little shapes made out of sticks and string.

I looked it up because I'm working on yet another Object Oriented Relational Database.

Now, the idea of a Relational Database (RDB) is that you keep just one of everything, in it's own table, and you join the tables to make sense of things.  So, in a table about things you can do, you'll have an index number for every 'thing' and every 'do'.  The name of the thing will be in another table (with it's index number), as will the name of the 'do' items.

With Object Oriented programming, you make 'instances' of things that can make other 'instances' of things that point at each other and such.

When I realized it, I had to look it up.  The whole concept is just like building a tensegrity sphere.

For the longest time, it looks like a pile of sticks and strings.  Then, when everything gets taut, it finally looks like a ball.

## Cloud nine (Tensegrity sphere)

Cloud nines are airborne habitats first proposed by Buckminster Fuller. Fuller proposed that giant geodesic spheres might be made to levitate by heating the air inside.

Geodesic spheres (structures of triangular components arranged to make a sphere) become stronger as they become bigger, due to how they distribute stress over their surfaces. Because of this, they may be imagined on colossal scales.

As a sphere gets bigger, the volume it encloses grows much faster than the mass of the enclosing structure itself. Fuller suggested that the mass of a mile-wide geodesic sphere would be negligible compared to the mass of the air trapped within it. He suggested that if the air inside such a sphere were heated even by one degree higher than the ambient temperature of its surroundings, the sphere could become airborne. He calculated that such a balloon could lift a considerable mass, and hence that 'mini-cities' or airborne towns of thousands of people could be built in this way. These 'cloud nines' could be tethered, or free-floating, or perhaps maneuverable so that they could 'migrate' in response to climatic and environmental conditions.

## I got yet another ...

'Reminder' that the middle-east gets 'all our money' for oil.

Now, inflation wise, oil has gone down over the years, actually (cost of production was lowered, even if the cost of raw materials went up).  That's why oil companies are making record profits.

That said, the reason that someone gets 'all our money' isn't for oil, it's for *money*.  Credit costs *way* more than oil, and since the 'Reagan Revolution' (paying the credit card minimum due w/cash advances from that very credit card, basically), we've paid a lot of money for money.

And now, we're kinda desperate for money, and it shows.

You might have noted the last time that we sent Taiwan anything, China threatened to hold the pursestrings shut, and for the first time, we listened (didn't act, but the fact that we listened is indicative of concern).

Yeah, Americans bitch about how much money they have to pay for oil.

I wonder how much they'll bitch when the Chinese won't lend them the cash to buy it?

## Is Obama a Trojan horse?

You guys know I didn't vote for him, right?  I couldn't.  I saw him as just another variant of the DLC crap we've gotten, and *none* of these 'major' Democrats are left of Dick Nixon, IMHO.  I'd have voted Democratic if they'd run someone Democratic, like Kucinich, but they seem stuck on 'GOP Lite'.

That's why I voted for Cynthia McKinney.

So, was/is he really a scam?  This article from The Free Press seems to think so:

Is Obama a Trojan horse?

February 28, 2010

The American people voted out the policies of George W. Bush's administration. Voters turned their back on W's war policies and torture; repudiated his Orwellian anti-environmentalism and demanded green jobs; and rejected his bailout of the big investment bankers that destroyed our economy.
Then, in came the political savior - a seemingly untainted junior first-term senator from Illinois.

The shiny knight was distinguished from other Democratic candidates like Hillary Clinton and John Kerry because as a state senator he had made "the speech" opposing the illegal attack on Iraq.

But did he ride in on a Trojan horse?

It's now clear Obama favors the same failed policies as the Bushites. Obama embraces the same "the surge is working" mantra, simply shifting the location from Iraq to Afghanistan. He echoes W's nonsensical rhetoric that the massive U.S. forces in Iraq and being dispensed to Afghanistan are "fighting for our freedom."

To make his presidency even more absurd, his war for oil policies are compounded by a bold initiative for building nukes throughout the United States. Eerily reminiscent of Bill Clinton and the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the supposedly eco-friendly "green" Obama, once firmly embraced by progressive Democrats, decides to go full metal nuclear.

As Free Press Senior Editor Harvey Wasserman writes, the Obama plan is to spend $645 million in lipstick for a dead radioactive pig. Meanwhile, the New York Times tells us that there actually is a Green New Deal - in China. The Times notes that "China bolted past competitors in Denmark, Germany, Spain, and the United States last year to become the world's largest maker of wind turbines, and is poised to expand even further this year." Moreover, "China has also leap-frogged the West in the last two years to emerge as the world's largest manufacturer of solar panels," the Times writes. The Times concludes that "...the West may someday trade its dependence on oil from the Mideast for reliance of solar panels, wind turbines, and other gear manufactured in China." While the Chinese "dominate renewable energy technologies," according to the Times, Obama is coddling back CEOs and cutting billion of dollars in checks to the financiers. Obama pushed the largest corporate bailout plan in U.S. history to further reward his supporters at Goldman Sachs. Opensecrets.org documents that Goldman Sachs employees were the second largest cash donors to Obama's election campaign coffers. It's easy to understand why. They had plenty of money to corrupt change and hope and turn it into the Bush status quo, supporting robber barons. The Sunday, February 7, 2010 New York Times details how Goldman Sachs helped tank the U.S. economy. As the Times notes: "Goldman stood to gain from the housing markets' implosion because in late 2006, the firm had begun to make huge trades that would pay off if the mortgage market soured." Those bets were insured by AIG, now the recipient of$180 billion subsidy courtesy of U.S. taxpayers. Mainly, AIG served as little more than a conduit for the casino capitalists at Goldman Sachs who bet heavy on sinking the U.S. housing market and the dreams of homeownership and equity for millions of Americans.

In the same way Bill Clinton sold U.S. working people and their deluded union leaders down the road during the 1992 election by shipping jobs to Mexico and China, Obama has done little to relocalize an American industrial base and re-hire laid off American workers. Obama continues the Reagan-era policies of so-called "free trade" that sees American manufacturing as a dirty word. The only manufacturing job is seen as a Red job.

The majority of Americans voted for Roosevelt, but instead got the third Bush administration. This has caused some journalists, like Wayne Madsen, to explore Obama's CIA connections through Business International Corporation (BIC), a company generally regarded as a CIA proprietary.

Obama spent a year after graduation from Columbia University working fro BIC. Madsen reports that Obama wrote for two BIC publications, Financing Foreign Operations and Business International Money Report, the latter a weekly newsletter.

Obama's early ties to the CIA help to explain the reprising of the second Bush administration. Take for example the recent decision by Obama Justice Department attorneys not to recommend punishment for infamous Bush administration lawyers John Yoo and Jay Bybee.

The initial Justice Department investigation correctly found that Yoo and Bybee had committed "professional misconduct" in issuing their notorious series of torture memos dating from August 2002. Their bizarre reinterpretation of torture that allowed anything short of acts leading to eminent death due to failure of major body organs has tainted the U.S. reputation throughout the world.

Yoo and Bybee's roles in conspiring with the Bush administration to cover up torture and provide legal cover for Bush and Cheney to say their torture techniques were "sanctioned by law," or at least "counsel," were all part of a fundamental sea change in American history.

If an attorney told you that it was all right to punch your spouse, waterboard your mother-in-law, and rip out your children's fingernails because it's not going to kill them - you would realize it was unacceptable legal advice and that your attorney was violating professional ethics and advising you that criminal action is allowed.

Obama signaled, prior to taking office, that he didn't think anyone in the Bush administration should be criminally prosecuted for the "enhanced interrogation" program.

Obama's first year in office has served notice on the American people that the policies and precedents set by George W. Bush will continue. Obama sees himself as the great compromiser. In reality, he's the great continuation - the Trojan horse.

GreenStream

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### Mentionables ...

It's been days since Israel broke the truce and started murdering Palestinians again.

Pres. Barack Obama
(202) 456-1111

Sen. Dianne Feinstein
(415) 393-0707

Sen. Barbara Boxer
(415) 403-0100

Mike Thompson
962-0933

S. Sen. Patricia Wiggins
(916) 651-4002

Assm. Wesley Chesbro
463-5770