Salem Baptist Church ready to move into new $50 million home

by Karen E. Pride, Chicago Defender
June 30, 2005

One of the largest church congregations in the Chicago area is expanding to new facilities and the location at 752 S. 114th St. is not your father's usual place of worship.

The 10,000-seat House of Hope of the Salem Church of Chicago would open doors to worshipers Sunday, after an early morning service in the old church sanctuary at 11800 S. Indiana Ave.

On Wednesday, teams of cleaning crews, technicians and constructions workers were busy making final modifications to the restrooms, stage and other areas for the 9 a.m. ribbon-cutting ceremony and live broadcast on WJYS-TV/Ch. 62.


Who’s your Daddy?

Recently, Toike Noboru, a professor of imperial history at Den-en Chofu University in Tokyo, invoked Japan’s freedom of information law in his effort to make the numerous imperial tumuli that dot the Japanese countryside accessible to historical knowledge.[1] At stake is not only the possibility of writing a more lucid account of the origins of the Japanese people but also a less idealized history of the modern imperial house. Blood myths of an unbroken line of imperial succession for ages eternal” (bansei ikkei) and Japan as a “divine land” (shinkoku) could be better understood. Indeed, the entire field of ancient Japanese history would benefit if the oldest tombs were excavated, and the question of the imperial family’s descent from Korea could be resolved. We might also learn more about why keepers of the imperial secrets go to such great lengths to conceal this strong likelihood. Even Emperor Akihito has said that the mother of the so-called “50th emperor,” Kammu, had Korean blood and “it made him feel a certain closeness to Korea.”


Proposal Made to Seize Souter's Property

Following a Supreme Court ruling last week that gave local governments power to seize private property, someone has suggested taking over Justice David Souter's New Hampshire farmhouse and turning it into a hotel. "The justification for such an eminent domain action is that our hotel will better serve the public interest as it will bring in economic development and higher tax revenue to Weare," Logan Darrow Clements of California wrote in a letter faxed to town officials in Weare on Tuesday. Souter, a longtime Weare resident, joined in the 5-4 court decision allowing governments to seize private property from one owner and turn it over to another if doing so would benefit a community. The letter dubbing the project the "Lost Liberty Hotel" was posted on conservative radio show host Rush Limbaugh's Web site. Clements said it would include a dining room called the "Just Desserts Cafe" an a museum focused on the "loss of freedom in America." A message seeking comment from Souter was left at his office Wednesday morning. The court has recessed and Souter was still in Washington, one of his secretaries said.



China's CNOOC faces all-out lobbying effort to win US oil firm

China National Offshore Oil Corp. is learning the intricate arts of Washington lobbying in its bid to overcome fierce political resistance to its bid to take over US oil major Unocal. The state-owned CNOOC, China's third-biggest oil company, faces an uphill battle to win over US lawmakers aghast at the prospect of a communist-owned entity grabbing a slice of the sensitive US energy industry. But it's leaving nothing to chance in the battle for congressional hearts and minds as it vies to fend off a rival bid for Unocal from US oil giant Chevron. Unocal shareholders are set to vote on the competing bids on August 10, but the company's board wants to stay in bed with Chevron in preference to the Chinese interloper. CNOOC chief executive Fu Chengyu, a fluent English speaker with a master's degree in petroleum engineering from the University of Southern California, has written to members of Congress outlining why the takeover bid is a good idea.


OK, quick point of notice: Interloper? Fluent? Just wondering.

S. Korea asks Japan to return 18th century stone monument

SEOUL-ASTANA, June 29. KAZINFORM. - South Korea has formally asked Japan to return an 18th century Korean monument commemorating the defeat of Japanese invaders in the 16th century that had been moved to Japan in the early 20th century and now kept at Tokyo's Yasukuni Shrine, the Unification Ministry said Wednesday. Officials of the ministry said Seoul made an official request to Japan on Tuesday after South and North Korea agreed during ministerial-level talks held last week in Seoul to seek the return of the Bukgwandaecheopbi monument, Kazinform quotes Kyodo.


U.S. - Chinese relations

There are a number of things I want to get off my chest. It’s too hot to drink, to hot to lift and . . . well, let’s just say this is the best outlet for my angst. So this is one.

Who will win between the US and China?

Yeah just so you know. This whole war on terror thing isn’t really about terrorism. It’s about controlling oil reserves and strategic land positions. Just in case we have to kick some ass on the other side of the world because some damn country with a couple of billion people decided to fuck with the stability of markets that we conquered “fair and square” (all’s fair in war). In my opinion, Americans are pathological enough to understand that. All this bullshit about how we want to spread democracy and freedom; we can’t even do that here. Anyway, if you simply tell American people that in the next 20 years or so oil, black gold, Texas T, is going to become more expensive as supplies become increasingly more scarce. That means that the price of oil will increase which means that the energy required to run an economy will increase. Therefore, who ever controls more oil can out compete her rivals. Now if President W (gotta maintain respect for the office) would simply say “In twenty years you will be China’s bitch if we don’t go to war right now, today” I think Americans would be incredibly open to his suggestions.

That brings me to another observation. He won’t say that because for him its not about America, the country, our ideals, our constitution, our way of life, the security of our family’s, the safety of our neighborhoods , the education of our children, or our posterity. For “President” W (always respectful), it’s about him; his profits, his family’s profits, and how much he and his cronies can control for their personal gain.

But I digress. I thought for a long time China would win due to sheer body count. Perhaps not. Then I discussed, with an associate, the possibility of the MTV effect. After considering the power of American consumer culture, the most powerful weapon on the planet to date, I thought we could win. But maybe not. China, unlike the coalition of forces that comprise the “Western World,” was never rooted in or to any significant degree influenced by Platonism and Judaism. There was no Classical Greek Renaissance in China and there was no Great Crusade to Save The Holy land. If our strategic calculations are not made with these two facts in mind, they will never work. MTV, in China will be popular for vastly different reasons than MTV in the West. The “MAN” of the “EAST” is not the same as the “MAN” in the “WEST.” If the American ideological battle is not waged at the level of humanism, then we have lost and the Dragon will devour George (sainted or not).

Bush's Speech On . . .

What was that?

I mean does President "W" have balls orrrr what?!!!!

It reminds me of that great line from Good Fellas: Fuck You! Pay Me!


It reminds me of the September speech.

Or the 48 hours speech (kinda Jack Bowerish)

USA are we gangsta or are we GANGSTA


Bloggers Go Mainstream to Fight Regulation

Just so we don’t get sidetracked on personality issues. What is at issue is freedom of speech. If internet related communication which is essentially any computer mediated communication is restricted by the imposition of financial sanctions, regulations or compulsory disclosures, what will result is an indirect tax on the press. Dissemination of information will be restricted to those who can afford to maneuver through the system. That is not a free press. It’s almost like a STAMP ACT.

Are bloggers going mainstream? Web log founders who built followings with anti-establishment postings are now lobbying the establishment to try to fend off government regulation. Some are even working with a political action committee, lawyers and public-relations consultants to do it.

They say they have no choice.

"There's a certain responsibility I have to help protect the medium. I have the platform, the voice to be able to do so," said Markos Moulitsas Zuniga, founder of the Web log

Moulitsas testified Tuesday at a hearing on a Federal Election Commission proposal that would extend some campaign finance rules to the Internet, including bloggers. He urged the FEC to take a hands-off approach.

"We have a democratic medium that allows anyone to have true freedom of the press. We have average citizens publishing their thoughts through research, through journalism, their activism and encouraging others to do the same," Moulitsas told commissioners.

Moulitsas also is working with a lawyer who volunteered to help bloggers fight new government regulations and whose efforts were promoted in a PR firm press release Monday. Moulitsas is prepared to lobby Congress himself if necessary, and he is the treasurer of BlogPac, a political action committee formed last year by bloggers.

Another witness, Michael Krempasky, founder of, a pro-Republican blog, called bloggers "citizen journalists" and said that like traditional media, they should get an exemption from campaign finance regulation.

"What goal would be served by protecting Rush Limbaugh's multimillion-dollar talk radio program, but not a self-published blogger with a fraction of the audience?" Krempasky asked the commission.


She’s done: Catharsis

There is something about the writer that is forever the exhibitionist; an apologist for himself and an exhibitionist for the world. Rooted in the act of transcription writing is forever an unveiling, a revealing of one world to another. It is in the act of writing that we reveal ourselves to ourselves. It transcends or hopes to transcend time; through print, space; if we are lucky it transcends the frailty of personality. In writing, communicating an internal sense of reality to an external audience, we fulfill what is quintessentially human – the need for community, sharing. By sharing our internal world, free from the impositions and facades of everyday life, writing extends our subjectivity by creating an object from ourselves that is other than ourselves. It is a neurotic function of kinesthetics and imagination that creates a visual representation of neuro-electrical impulses cascading through a network of gelatinous flesh. Ultimately it reveals our need for control. This peculiar practice of graphically representing the idea of consciousness creates, for the human animal, the myth of continuity and re-affirms the illusion we call time. It makes us more than bodies of periodic motion bounded by gravity in a centripetal spiral toward immolation. Writing, to some degree, is redemptive. It forms our being, our existence in this world, into something more than a futile struggle against death. It crafts our aspirations and vanity into something more elegant, transcendent – beautiful. Writing forges from the brutish and short barbarity that we call life an object, at times, that is resonant, harmonious and true. In writing we create the record of our existence against which some truth can be uttered. Not on our behalf but on behalf of the witness, the reader, the participant and finally, the indulgent. Writing provides the foundation against which a verdict, ver dictum – a true speaking, can be pronounced. Writing, for better or worse, reveals the ordeal we call our lives.


Fundamentals (Dune)

There exists no separation between gods and men; one blends softly casual to the other.

All states are abstractions.

Does knowledge increase a person's burden more, or ignorance? Every teacher must consider this question before beginning to alter a student.

Governments, if they endure, always tend increasingly toward aristocratic forms. No government in history has been known to evade this pattern. And as the aristocracy develops, government tends more and more to act exclusively in the interests of the ruling class -- whether that class be hereditary royalty, oligarchs of financial empires, or entrenched bureaucracy.

If you believe certain words, you believe their hidden arguments. When you believe something is right or wrong, true of false, you believe the assumptions in the words which express the arguments. Such assumptions are often full of holes, but remain most precious to the convinced

Liberal court triumph bulldozes rights of 'little people'

George Will

The question answered Thursday was: Can government profit by seizing the property of people of modest means and giving it to wealthy people who can pay more taxes than can be extracted from the original owners? The court answered yes.


Study Finds Gap in Hispanic Growth, Voters


The rapid increase of the Hispanic population in the United States is not resulting in a comparable growth in political clout, a new study found. Hispanics accounted for half the growth in the U.S. between 2000 and 2004, but only a tenth of the growth in votes, according to an analysis of Census data by the Pew Hispanic Center. The population of Hispanics increased by 5.7 million over those four years, but only 2.1 million of those were eligible to vote. The number of Hispanic voters increased by only 1.4 million. One reason for the gap: A high percentage of Hispanics are either too young to vote or are ineligible because they are not citizens.



Brain sees violent video games as real life -study

The brains of players of violent video games react as if the violence were real, a study has suggested. Klaus Mathiak at the University of Aachen in Germany studied the brain patterns of 13 men aged 18 to 26 who, on average, played video games for two hours a day. Wired up to a scanner, they were asked to play a game involving navigating through a complicated bunker, killing attackers and rescuing hostages. Mathiak found that as violence became imminent, the cognitive parts of the brain became active and that during a fight, emotional parts of the brain were shut down. The pattern was the same as that seen in subjects who have had brain scans during other simulated violent situations. It suggests that video games are a "training for the brain to react with this pattern," Mathiak says. The research was presented at a meeting in Canada and reported by New Scientist magazine.


No, Seriously



Chapter 272: Section 36 Blasphemy

Section 36. Whoever wilfully blasphemes the holy name of God by denying, cursing or contumeliously reproaching God, his creation, government or final judging of the world, or by cursing or contumeliously reproaching Jesus Christ or the Holy Ghost, or by cursing or contumeliously reproaching or exposing to contempt and ridicule, the holy word of God contained in the holy scriptures shall be punished by imprisonment in jail for not more than one year or by a fine of not more than three hundred dollars, and may also be bound to good behavior.


And you wonder why this country is screwed up. Who the hell keeps a law on the books for Blasphemy!?!

Court: File-Sharing Services May Be Sued

That’s it we now live in a Plutocracy, what the hell is it about law school that turns a person into moral whore?

Internet file-sharing services will be held responsible if they intend for their customers to use software primarily to swap songs and movies illegally, the Supreme Court ruled Monday, rejecting warnings that the lawsuits will stunt growth of cool tech gadgets such as the next iPod. The unanimous decision sends the case back to lower court, which had ruled in favor of file-sharing services Grokster Ltd. and StreamCast Networks Inc. on the grounds that the companies couldn't be sued. The justices said there was enough evidence of unlawful intent for the case to go to trial. File-sharing services shouldn't get a free pass on bad behavior, justices said. "We hold that one who distributes a device with the object of promoting its use to infringe copyright, as shown by the clear expression or other affirmative steps taken to foster infringement, is liable for the resulting acts of infringement by third parties," Justice David H. Souter wrote for the court.


Cities may seize homes for economic development, Supreme Court rules

I am totally flabbergasted (not really) by this entire development. One; the constitution is on its way to being toilet paper and, two; Clarence Thomas and I are on the same side of an issue. I tell you, the American Justice system is the best money can buy.

They must be wearing mufflers in hell.


Afghans burn '60 tons of drugs'

Weren’t we supposed to have stopped taliban drug production?

<>The Afghan authorities say they have burned more than 60 tons of illegal drugs in a demonstration of their efforts to curb drugs trafficking. Piles of drugs were set alight at eight locations around the country, the biggest being on the outskirts of the capital, Kabul. Afghanistan produced 90% of the world's opium in 2004. In a similar operation in Pakistan, officials say around 26 tons of narcotics were burned in Karachi. Afghan President Hamid Karzai has predicted a big drop this year in the poppy crop that is the basis for making opium. Thirty tons of seized drugs were burned outside Kabul on Sunday, an official statement said. Which included 13 tons of opium, 9 tons of hashish, 2 tons of heroin and 6 tons of other drugs.


Italy judge orders arrest of 13 CIA agents

An Italian judge on Friday ordered the arrests of 13 CIA officers for secretly transporting a Muslim preacher from Italy to Egypt as part of U.S. anti-terrorism efforts - a rare public objection to the practice by a close American ally. The Egyptian was spirited away in 2003, purportedly as part of the CIA's "extraordinary rendition" program in which terror suspects are transferred to third countries without court approval, subjecting them to possible torture. The arrest warrants were announced Friday by the Milan prosecutor's office, which has called the disappearance a kidnapping and a blow to a terrorism investigation in Italy. The office said the imam was believed to belong to an Islamic terrorist group. The 13 are accused of seizing Osama Moustafa Hassan Nasr, known as Abu Omar, on a Milan street on Feb. 17, 2003, and sending him to Egypt, where he reportedly was tortured, Milan prosecutor Manlio Claudio Minale said in a statement.


Bewitched boardrooms as CEOs use magic, psychics

I don’t want to knock a good hustle but damn $385/hr. . . ?

Corporate Australia is turning to the occult in a bid to boost its bottom line, employing psychics and witches as alternative business consultants. Self-employed professionals, small business owners and executives in major, publicly listed companies are among those joining an expanding network of "covens" organised by businesswoman and self-described witch, Stacey Demarco. The former public relations manager turned pagan and author of There's A Witch In The Boardroom said people were looking for new ways to combine spiritual values with their material success. "There's a belief out there that you can't be spiritual and make money at the same time," Ms Demarco said. "Our spiritual practice isn't like that." Elsewhere, Sydney-based psychic and former lawyer, Alana Fairchild, is providing "intuitive diagnostics" sessions to large corporations, focusing on personnel issues. Charging up to $385 per hour, she uses intuition to detect problems or "blockages" within the organizational structure.


Gamers turn cities into a battleground

Matt has been abandoned on Tower Bridge, London, with nothing except his clothes and a mobile phone. A woman dressed in black walks past, and Matt receives a text message to follow her. He doesn't know who she is, or where she is going. All he knows is that he must follow her if he is to find Uncle Roy. Matt is playing Uncle Roy All Around You, where for one day he is the main character in an elaborate experimental fantasy game played out across the streets of London. He also happens to be a pioneer of a new social phenomenon, urban gaming. If you thought the computer games of the 21st century are only ever played by couch potatoes addicted to the new generation of Xbox, Nintendo or PlayStation consoles, you'd be mistaken. For urban gamers are harnessing the power of global positioning systems (GPS), high-resolution screens and cameras and the latest mobile phones to play games across our towns and cities, where they become spies, vampire slayers, celebrities and even Pac-Man.



Rap Marketing Comes to Nerdcore

Wiggers: It never ends.

Tupac and Biggie, move over. A new hip-hop feud is brewing that glamorizes not guns and 'hos but Java and secure encryption algorithms. While gangsta rap is seen as celebrating the violence and aggression that claimed two of its brightest stars, "geeksta" rap is a hip-hop genre celebrating coding skills and school grades.



Justinian: The Institutes

Jurisprudence is the knowledge of things divine and human; the science of the just and the unjust.

The law of the nations is common to all mankind, for nations have established certain laws, as occasion and the necessities of human life required. Wars arose, and in their train followed captivity and then slavery, which is contrary to the law of nature; for by that law all men are originally born free. Further, by the law of nations almost all contracts were at first introduced, as, for instance, buying and selling, letting and hiring, partnership, deposits, loans returnable in kind, and very many others.

All our law relates either to persons, or to things, or to actions. Let us first speak of persons; as it is of little purpose to know the law, if we do not know the persons for whose sake the law was made. The chief division in the rights of persons is this: men are all either free or slaves.

1. Freedom, from which men are said to be free, is the natural power of doing what we each please, unless prevented by force or by law.

2. Slavery is an institution of the law of nations, by which one man is made the property of another, contrary to natural right.

3. Slaves are denominated servi, because generals order their captives to be sold, and thus preserve them, and do not put them to death. Slaves are also called mancipia, because they are taken from the enemy by the strong hand.

4. Slaves either are born or become so. They are born so when their mother is a slave; they become so either by the law of nations, that is, by captivity, or by the civil law, as when a free person, above the age of twenty, suffers himself to be sold, that he may share the price given for him.

5. In the condition of slaves there is no distinction; but there are many distinctions among free persons; for they are either born free, or have been set free.

Follow The Money

Molly Ivins

As that great American, Deep Throat, never said, "Follow the money." (The line is by William Goldman, who wrote the movie, All the President's Men). Keeping your eye on the shell with the pea under it is not easy when the right-wing echo chamber continually takes up new chapters in the culture wars -- the dread case of the senator who didn't, in fact, say the United States is as bad as the late Soviet Union and the equally grave perennial constitutional amendment to prevent the menace of flag desecration.

Seriously, this administration is starting to look like that old television show in which contestants lined up their shopping carts in a grocery store and, on the signal, began running around throwing every valuable item they could find in their carts. Whoever grabbed the most high-priced items won. The contestants here and now are corporations and lobbyists. The amusing case of the congressman whose house was bought by the founder of a defense firm for $700,000 more than it was worth is being exceptionally well-reported by the congressman's hometown paper, the San Diego Union-Tribune. You will not be amazed to learn the congressman in question (Randy Cunningham) oversees the committee that grants contracts to that very defense firm.

The story gets better by the day -- the congressman lives on a yacht in D.C. owned by the defense contractor, and employees of the defense firm say they were threatened with firing if they did not give to the company PAC. Well shut my mouth!


An Idler's Life

Katie Renz

Ten a.m. is for sleeping in, three in the afternoon for a nap (waking fresh for teatime). Then a rambling stroll followed by the first drink of the day. Ten in the evening: pints at the pub; a midnight contemplation of the celestial sphere; meditation at four in the morning.

Who the hell lives like this?

Tom Hodgkinson, for one. His book, How to be Idle, just out in the United States, is a treatise on living a life of leisure and should be required reading for the Western world's workaholics -- and especially for Americans, who with their collective 415 million unused vacation days last year and pathetic 53 percent job dissatisfaction rates could evidently use some edifying pointers on successful loafing.

In his early 20s, Hodgkinson was becoming "massively disappointed" with the world of work post-graduation. "At the University I was more or less the master of my own time," he said, reminiscing about his days publishing magazines, playing in bands, and attending great lectures. "But I started to question this whole idea of jobs because it was taking away my freedom." He intended to become a freelance writer (both his parents were journalists), but was chronically unable to get out of bed. "I wasn't doing it with any pleasure, I was feeling really pissed off at myself," he recalled. In the midst of this guilty inaction he found a series of essays by Samuel Johnson on the virtues of kicking back and the vital link between idleness and creativity. As he told a British interviewer, "I suddenly realised, hey, I'm not a lazy idiot, I'm an idler! It's something to aspire to, it's part of the creative process! That's fantastic!"



Rare Black Deer Born In Colorado

A Black Deer with Blue eyes . . . more

'Possessed' nun crucified after row with priest

And you thought the religious right was harmless . . .pshaw.

A Romanian Orthodox priest who faces a murder charge after ordering the crucifixion of a young nun because she was "possessed by the devil" was unrepentant as he conducted a funeral mass for his alleged victim. Prosecutors said they had charged the priest and four nuns from the order with imprisonment leading to death, after questioning all 24 resident nuns. For four days prior to her crucifixion, Sister Irina had been kept locked up with no food or water. She was imprisoned after having an argument with the priest during Sunday mass, according to locals.


A great story: making the King James Bible

In exploring the genesis of the King James Bible, Adam Nicolson quite reasonably begins with King James. He became James VI of Scotland when he was 1 and his mother, Mary, Queen of Scots, was deposed. By the time Elizabeth I of England died in 1603, as Nicolson puts it, "James' mouth was dry with years of panting." He would travel south from Edinburgh, ascend the English throne as James I and create a unified Britain at last.

"James Stuart was an unlikely hero," Nicolson writes vividly, "ugly, restless, red-haired, pale-skinned, his tongue, it was said, too big for his mouth, impatient, vulgar, clever, nervous." But he was an inspired diplomat when it came to reconciling the warring religious factions in his new country. He recognized that one way to mediate between Roman Catholics and Protestant Puritans was to give them a shared mission.

"No bishops, no king," he bluntly told one highly placed Puritan; his ability to rule depended on a unity between church and state. And the Puritans were too austere and independent to guarantee that. (Authentic Puritan names of the period include Faint-not, Eschew-evil and No-merit.) James thus had political reasons to want a Bible that, unlike the Geneva Bible preferred by Puritans, did not use the word tyrant more than 400 times. In explaining the need for a new text, the king said bluntly: "It was no reason that because a man had been sick of the poxe 40 years, therefore he should not be cured at length."

The tyrant-free King James Bible required "something approaching 350 scholar years" to complete. God's Secretaries takes on the daunting task of explaining how that work was done. The plan called for six teams of eight scholars apiece, with each group called a company. There were six overseers as well, and each team dealt with a different section of Scripture. "With these men, it is often difficult to penetrate beneath the slew of titles and appointments, of publicly declared positions and overt alliances," the author acknowledges. Nonetheless, he gives it a venturesome try.


Portugal youths in beach rampage

Some 500 youths, mainly teenagers, have raided a popular beach near Lisbon spreading panic among beachgoers and mugging a large number of people. Carcavelos beach, 15km (10 miles) west of the Portuguese capital, was crowded on Friday because the country was celebrating a national holiday. Policemen in riot gear were confronted by gangs and struggled to restore calm, making four arrests. The attackers are believed to come from some of the capital's poorest suburbs. "Small groups of youngsters aged 12 to 20 assembled and robbed en masse those they found on the beach," a local cafe owner, Helder Gabriel, told AFP news agency.


EU and China agree textile pact

The European Union and China have agreed a deal to limit exports of Chinese textiles into Europe after last-ditch talks to calm a trade row. EU Trade Commissioner Peter Mandelson said the curbs would give European firms time to adjust to China's growing power in the textile trade. The measures will come into force immediately and last till 2008. The EU was set to impose its own curbs if no deal was reached on Friday, as trade rules allow protection till 2008. Mr. Mandelson said "the overall settlement offers a fair deal for China while giving respite and much-needed breathing space to textiles industries in Europe and developing countries".


Bankruptcy Anyone?

To all of you who went to college got a credit card, worked shit jobs, for shittier pay and now have debt that makes life impossible, well . . . can you say indenture?

"The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender," - Proverbs 22:7.

If the idea of declaring bankruptcy has been on your mind recently, the time to act is now. The new bankruptcy law, signed by President Bush in April, is set to take effect in October of this year. The law makes it much more difficult, if not impossible, for people with unmanageable debts to get a fresh financial start in life. Furthermore, the law is slated to take effect just as new credit card policies doubling average monthly minimum payments is set to take effect. If your payments are just barely manageable now, they will soon be unmanageable, just as the bankruptcy window slams shut.



Before Jehova had breath

For all those who care, a solstice chart.

All tuning stripped out of rear projection CRT TVs

By Dennis P. Barker

At the recent Toshiba product line show, which was held in the outskirts of Albuquerque, NM at the luxurious Hyatt Tamaya resort on May 19th, the company unveiled their first completely tunerless rear projection CRT monitors capable of displaying high-definition TV signals. The set sets in the new Custom SeriesHD Series include no tuning whatsoever, and will reply on the consumer of adding a separate HD Satellite and HD Cable Box. To this reporter, it was seemingly a bold move. However, it was later found out that by eliminating all tuning, the sets bypassed the FCC tuner mandate for all TVs 36-in. and above, which goes into effect on July 1st. And, as a bonus, the company will be able to offer the sets at much lower prices. The 57-in. widescreen model " 57HC85 " is priced at $1,599.99 (list), which means that it will sell for about $1,300-$1,400 (street). Toshiba will also offer a 51-in. model (51HC85 @ $1,399.99 list).


Why the Housing Crash Will Happen

Housing prices are a function of supply, specifically the supply of money made available to buy the commodity in question. This has been artificially inflated by tax gimmicks, by the subsidies of federally-backed mortgage buyers, by the lack of alternative investments, and by the over-use of dicey instruments like ARMs and interest-only loans. Bubbles burst when just about everyone is invested in the market going up. The triggering event can seem positive on the surface, like the Time Warner purchase of AOL, but whatever the trigger is it sets a ceiling for prices that rests at or below current levels. The last "triggering event" in housing was the 1973 Arab Oil Embargo. This raised inflation, thus raising interest rates, it caused unemployment, and it meant there wasn't a lot of money left over for housing, not as much as anticipated by prices.


Close friends make longer life more likely

Friends, not family, are the key to a longer life, a new study suggests. While previous research has found that strong social networks help older people live longer, the work had not distinguished between contact with friends or relatives. The new study followed almost 1500 Australians, initially aged over 70. Those who at the start reported regular close personal or phone contact with five or more friends were 22% less likely to die in the next decade than those who had reported fewer, more-distant friends. But the presence or absence of close ties with children or other relatives had no impact on survival.


Venezuela Begins Exporting Fuel to China

CARACAS, Venezuela -- Venezuela has begun exporting fuel to China under a trade agreement aimed at boosting trade between the oil-rich South American nation and Asia's energy-hungry, economic powerhouse. Venezuela's state-run oil company, Petroleos de Venezuela S.A., sent an initial shipment of 1.8 million barrels of fuel to China last week, according to information posted Monday on the company's Web site.


Process ups biodiesel efficiency

Researchers from the University of Wisconsin at Madison have shown that it is possible to convert biomass materials like corn into fuel that could be used in diesel engines in a way that automatically separates the fuel from water. "This is a new process to produce liquid fuels from biomass," said James Dumesic, a professor of chemical and biological engineering at the University of Wisconsin. Because no energy is required to separate the fuel from water, the process has a relatively high overall energy efficiency. The fuel could eventually be blended with diesel fuel produced from petroleum sources to reduce oil needs, according to Dumesic. The process could also eventually produce diesel fuel that does not have to be blended with petroleum-based fuel, he said.



Record numbers of ex-cons return to Illinois streets

By Rex W. Huppke
Tribune staff reporter
June 19, 2005

Having served their time, they come back to Chicago in staggering numbers: hundreds who've murdered and robbed; thousands of one-time thieves and burglars; nearly 10,000 who've dealt drugs or used them. About 21,000 inmates will leave the high-fenced borders of Illinois prisons this year and re-enter society within the city limits, enough ex-offenders to fill the United Center, about 10 city bus-loads rolling in each week.

This population returns with little notice or fanfare, most drifting almost invisibly back to the neighborhoods where they found trouble in the first place. From January 2004 to the end of May this year, 27,944 people were released to Chicago. Already, 6,405--nearly 23 percent--are back in prison.

There's a reason for that. Most of these inmates are leaving with a bus pass and a few bucks, taking limited skills and a criminal record and jumping the chasm between a cell and law-abiding society.

Over the last three decades, America has largely given up on rehabilitating its prisoners, all the while watching prison populations across the country swell to unheard-of levels. In 1972, about 200,000 people occupied the country's state and federal prisons. That number is now about 1.4 million.


Endangered Species: The Crisis of the Man-child in the Promised Land

The Reality of America for Black Males

All of the most important quality of life indicators suggest that African American males are in deep trouble. They lead the nation in homicides, both as victims and perpetrators (1) and in what observers regard as an alarming trend, they now have the fastest growing rate for suicide.(2) For the last several years Black males have been contracting HIV and AIDS at a faster rate than any other segment of the population (3) and their incarceration, conviction and arrest rates have been at the top of the charts in most states for some time.(4) Even as babies, Black males have the highest probability of dying in the first year of life(5), and as they grow older they face the unfortunate reality of being the only group in the United States experiencing a decline in life expectancy.(6) In the labor market they are the least likely to be hired, and in many cities, the most likely to be unemployed.(7)


Poverty and Unemployment

An astronomically high number of young black males are not just jobless, they are also in mortal danger of becoming job untouchables. According to the Labor Department, nearly forty percent of young blacks are now unemployed. This comes on the heels of the Bush administration's tout of the increase in more than 100,000 new jobs in the past few months. But the jobless crisis among young blacks is not new and can't be totally blamed on Bush's dubious fiscal and economic policies. Even during the Clinton-era economic boom, the unemployment rate for young black males was double, and in some parts of the country triple, that of white males. Discrimination, racial profiling, failing public schools, and broken homes are the easy answers that explain their Great Depression-era high unemployment numbers.


While the economy lifted the boats of many Americans during the 1990s, it left thousands of young black men groping for a life preserver. As a group, black males ages 16-24 who are out of school and have no more than a high school education sank in the job market compared with whites and Hispanics with like attributes. In 1979, 62.5 percent of young blacks with low education had jobs. By 1999-2000, that number had decreased almost 10 percentage points, according to research from professors Paul Offner and Harry Holzer at the Georgetown Public Policy Institute. The largest decline occurred in the past decade. "It's a serious problem," Holzer said. "Our biggest concern is it limits the well-being not only of the men themselves, but of families and children. How can families rise out of poverty and become self-sufficient? And among single mothers, what are the odds of boys breaking out of this cycle if we don't do something to help the dads?" Chronically high unemployment among young blacks has long been a concern, but recent trends show the problem is worsening. Renewed debate on welfare reform has highlighted the challenges facing public policy makers: Efforts to increase the marriage rate will depend on the ability of young men to get jobs.


Inadequate Education

The opposition to Negro education in the South was at first bitter ... for the South believed an educated Negro to be a dangerous Negro. And the South was not wholly wrong; for education among all kinds of men always has had, and always will have, an element of danger and revolution, of dissatisfaction and discontent. Nevertheless, men strive to know.



Declining Life Expectancy

Among teen-agers 15-19 -- where firearm homicide rates are
rising the fastest -- the rate for black males (105.3 deaths per
100,000 population) was 11 times the rate for white males (9.7
per 100,000).  For suicide the racial pattern was reversed.  The
rate for firearm suicide for white males 15-19 was one and a half
times that for black males (13.5 versus 8.8 per 100,000).Young black males, ages 15-24, had the highest firearm mortality rates -- five times that for white males and 10 times that for black females.  For those aged 25-34 the rate for black males was four times the rate for white males and seven times the rate for black females.  For younger ages, firearm death rates
for black children were higher than for white children as well. 
Rates for white females were the lowest at every age group.

 see also: Black Men Missing
God Bless America

Fuckin' Yuppies

Fuckin’ yuppies. It’s not really their fault and yet it is. They were never there for the bad days, when the block was not all quiet, pretty or safe. When there were two liquor stores within a block of one another, when they sold drinks by the cup, when they sold cigarettes by the quarter, when the corner smelled like piss and beer, when the park was the land of the living dead and your play ground consisted of a 8x3 plot of grass and 30 yards of side walk. Let me tell you, you’ve got to be a real inventive motherfucker. How do you play hoops with no hoop, how do you run the ball with all ball and nowhere to run? A bike that can only go from here to there really stops being a bike.

I happen to live in area that is being “revitalized.” Not that it hasn’t been vital before but the yuppies are here, Starbucks and all. Gone are our quiet days and private pleasures. There were no yuppies when we voted our block dry, there were none when we removed two Aldermen, there were no yuppies when Harold came to plan his run, there were none when he died and all was lost, there were none on those Saturday mornings when the boulevard looked like a parade because PUSH was in session, no there were no yuppies then.

When G.G. showed me what every 13 year old knew and every 7 year old didn’t yet know he needed to know there were no yuppies. How could they know that they had just paved over the very spot where after cold cocking me for missing a pass and making him look bad, he popped the shit out me again for crying in public. They didn’t know that on that very spot I learned the rhythm of the city, that mom checked the window every hour just between soaps, that if you clustered enough kids at this particular building, the line of sight from the window didn’t allow you to distinguish one child from another, god bless the dogwood tree. The didn’t know that this is where there was a shortcut to the other side of the block, under the gangway, and up you pop right in front of the bus barn; a handy piece of information when you were being chased by “the big kids.” But the yuppies don’t know this. I guess they didn’t know about GDK, BPSN and upside down pitchforks, the sigil that kept us safe from 63 to 39 back in the day. They didn’t know that on that day, on that spot, he had been made and the concrete next to that spot just happened to be fresh, and there he made his mark and taught me a little more about the world I would grow up in. They didn’t know that from here to there and back was just about 45 minutes, but that you had to come around from the back so that your mother could see you come from the upside of the block and believe (maybe not) that you had just gone around the block. They didn’t know that in that run you could get $10, just for running an “errand.” A dollar out of fifteen cents.

I guess what offends me is that they move in, they don’t speak, they don’t ask, the don’t know and they don’t care. They don’t know that when I walked by “my spot” and saw it wasn’t there, paved over fresh and clean, I nearly lost my mind. They don’t know that the rules that kept me safe, the ghosts that watched over me all these years, the memories of who I have become have their root in that very spot . . . they don’t know how I cried.

Fuckin’ yuppies.



All Is Well

Internet under attack in Congress

A bill just introduced in the House could destroy universal, affordable Internet access everywhere.

The “Preserving Innovation in Telecom Act” (H.R. 2726) would let big cable and telecom companies shut down Community Internet and municipal broadband projects being planned across the country.

The bill would prevent state or local governments from providing “any telecommunications service, information service or cable service” anywhere a corporation offers a similar service.

This outrageous legislation was introduced by Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Texas) — a former SBC executive — and is a blatant effort by the telecom and cable companies to cement their monopoly control of communications at the expense of innovation, competition, and local choice.

We need your help to stop H.R. 2726. Please send a letter to your representative now.


High Schools Disrupt Natural Teen Sleep Schedules

For all of you in HS or with HS aged children; I hated HS and this was one reason why!! Our Schools are run by idots!! You know and I know that the people you went to HS with that were at the top of their game, very few of them went into education -- nuff said.
Current high school start times deprive adolescents of sleep and force students to perform academically in the early morning, a time of day when they are at their worst, according to a study in the June issue of the journal Pediatrics.

Results from high school senior sleep/wake diaries kept for the study also showed that adolescents lost as much as two hours of sleep per night during the school week, but weekend sleep times during the school year were similar to those in summer.

The study was a collaborative project involving researchers at the Feinberg School of Medicine and the Center for Sleep and Circadian Biology at Northwestern University and faculty, students and parents from Evanston Township High School, Evanston, Ill. The students were advanced placement biology students who helped conduct the study and analyze the collected data.



"Remembering you are going to die is the best way to avoid the fear that you have something to lose,"


PALO ALTO, California -- Steve Jobs told Stanford University graduates Sunday that dropping out of college was one of the best decisions he ever made because it forced him to be innovative -- even when it came to finding enough money for dinner.

In an unusually candid commencement speech, Apple Computer's CEO also told the almost 5,000 graduates that his bout with a rare form of pancreatic cancer reemphasized the need to live each day to the fullest.


The Housewife Theory of History

On the west coast of Madagascar, there's a tribe called the Sakalava, who are theoretically monarchists, loyal to a line of male kings. Their loyalty, however, is to dead rather than living kings, and the wishes of the dead kings are made known through spirit mediums who are, according to David Graeber in his wonderful Fragments of an Anarchist Anthropology, "usually elderly women of common descent." Which is to say that, officially, the Sakalava are governed by elite men, but ordinary elderly women are the literal voices of authority.

I'm not sure we're much different. We are governed mostly by elite men, quite a lot of them seemingly dead, and everything in our culture encourages us to regard these rulers not just as the central but the sole source of power. But history is changed again and again by people who are supposedly powerless, including the women veiled by the dismissive moniker housewife.

Russia, Venezuela sign contract for delivery of helicopters

CARACAS, June 11 (Itar-Tass) - A contract for the delivery of Russian transportation-and-combat helicopters to the Venezuelan Army was signed at the Venezuelan Ministry of Defense here on Friday. The sides agreed that five Mi-35-M helicopters, made by the Rostov-based helicopter manufacturing plant, would be sold to the Venezuelan side. The aggregate value of the contract is 81 million US dollars.


Venezuela hands evidence against Cuban exile to U.S.

CARACAS, Venezuela (Reuters) -- Venezuela on Friday supplied the United States with extradition evidence it says implicates a Cuban exile sought by Caracas in the blowing up a Cuban airliner nearly three decades ago. In a case that has strained already tense ties, President Hugo Chavez's government is demanding the United States extradite Luis Posada Carriles, a naturalized Venezuelan and ex-CIA collaborator who escaped from a Venezuelan prison in 1985. The Venezuelan Embassy in Washington said it delivered documents to the State Department that demonstrate "probable cause" to accuse Posada of masterminding the 1976 bombing of the Cuban airliner that killed 73 people.


A fix for a broken patent system?

The U.S. patent system will undergo its most substantial overhaul in decades if a bill introduced on Wednesday becomes law.

Rep. Lamar Smith, who heads the House of Representatives committee responsible for drafting patent law, said his proposal would improve the overall quality of patents and target some of the legal practices that have irked high-tech companies.

"The bill will eliminate legal gamesmanship from the current system that rewards lawsuit abuses over creativity," said Smith, a Texas Republican.

The Business Software Alliance was quick to praise the bill, saying in a statement that it goes a long way toward "improving patent quality, making sure U.S. law is consistent with that of other major countries and addressing disruptions caused by excessive litigation."


Companies ramping up e-mail monitoring

A new study has found that 63 percent of corporations with 1,000 or more employees either employ or plan to employ staff to read or otherwise analyze outbound e-mail. The report, released Monday by e-mail security specialist Proofpoint, said 36.1 percent of companies employ staff to monitor e-mail today, with another 26.5 percent saying they intend to employ such staff in the future.


The Watcher: A Fuge

Where the hell is Drexside?

Drexside is the on corner of Civilization and Barbarism between ghetto and bourgeoisie. Where we come out chased by hounds; hellions and Thundercats; born to ride or die with one more road to cross. We watched the Fort fall, the Challenger explode, the Bears win, Jordan Rise, Harold Die, Jimmy lose, Regan Win, Bush Steal, Clinton Lie and George destroy. We saw Elijah die, Farrakhan rise (1 million men); Dre, Pac, Bigge, Suge; in a Do or Die world of Crucial Conflict it was all C.R.E.A.M. Even though they won’t go when I go, some day we’ll all be free.

Drexside is the focal point for a critique of the post modern, urban, global, commodity combination (UGCC). In short: a radical critique of contemporary capitalism and democracy. Welcome to the new Symposium. Leo Strauss was a Bitch! Liberalism is no more . . .

Fear not, we philosophize with a hammer – all is well.

Why Xenophon?

Why Xenophon?

I have thought about this for some time and this is where I am with it so far. You see Xenophon is one of the Socratic commentators. He creates an image of Socrates different than that of Plato. Which tells us something about the symposium, the nature of education, democracy and civilization; it forces to mind the assumptions of our civilization and reminds us that Athens was not a success. You see Plato and Xenophon were the first Bloggers, recording and commenting on the discussions at the symposia. They become like omniscient narrators, selecting and constructing the narrative to their design. Not unlike News and the Modern Mass Media Corporations. If we were to take the modern media corporations model of information dissemination as a model for history, selecting those events reported by the news as significant historical events, then we would view the world as an escalating consumption, where movie stars and American Idols change the world. But we all know American idol does not pay the bills or feed any of those who participate as spectators. NO the world has changed, the fundamental means through which you sustain life and access to those resources and means, is determined by a slow grinding bureaucratic process of barter: in favor, obligation and debt and the men and women who negotiate this – in short the world is changed by bureaucrats not the beautiful ones. So if one wants information about the world one lives in as opposed to the world one wished one lived in then the structure of the news narrative needs to change. This blog is simply a different take on the world narrated by a set of concerns centered on the question: Who gets to eat?

To be continued . . .

When I Die; Baptised in Eternal Fire: Only God . . .

I shall fear no man, but God
though I walk through the valley of death
I shed so many tears

If I should die before I wake
Please God walk with me...

Grab a NIGGA and get me outta here
back in Elementary, I thrived on misery
left me alone I grew up amongst a dying breed
as my mind couldn't find a place ta rest
untill I got that Thug Life Tatted on my chest
tell me can ya feel me ?
I'm not liven in tha Past, Ya wanna last
Be tha first ta blast, remember Cato
no longer with us he's deceased
call on the sirens, I seem him murdered in the streets
now rest in peace
Is there heaven for a 'G' ?
remember me, so many homies in tha cemetery
shed so many tears

That which does not kill me can only make me stronger
(That's for real)
and I don't see why everybody feel as though
that they gotta tell me how to live my life
(You know?)
Let me live baby, let me live

Now I will tell you what I've done for you
50 thousand tears I've cried
Screaming Deceiving and Bleeding for you
And you still won't hear me
(I’m going under)
Don't want your hand this time I'll save myself
Maybe I'll wake up for once
Not tormented daily defeated by you
Just when I thought I'd reached the bottom
I'm dying again

I'm going under
Drowning in you
I'm falling forever
I've got to break through

I hear the doctor standing over me
screaming I can make it
Got a body full of bullet holes laying here naked
Still I, can't breathe, something’s evil in my IV
Cause every time I breathe, I think they killing me
I'm having nightmares, homicidal fantasies
I wake up strangling, dangling my bed sheets
I call the nurse cause it hurts, to reminisce
How did it come to this? I wish they didn't miss
Somebody help me, tell me where to go from here
Cause even Thugs cry, but do the Lord care?
Try to remember, but it hurts
I'm walking through the cemetery talking to the, dirt
I'd rather die like a man, than live like a coward
There's a ghetto up in Heaven and it's ours, Black Power
is what we scream as we dream in a paranoid state
And our fate, is a lifetime of hate
Dear Mama, can you save me? And fuck peace
Cause the streets got our babies, we gotta eat
No more hesitation each and every black male's trapped
And they wonder why we suicidal running round strapped
Mister, Po-lice, please try to see that it's
a million Motherfuckers stressing just like me
Only God can judge me

(What y'all want?)
Unconditional Love (no doubt)
Talking bout the stuff that don't wear off
It don't fade
It'll last for all these crazy days
These crazy nights
Whether you wrong or you right
I'm a still love you
Still feel you
Still there for you
No matter what (hehe)
You will always be in my heart
With unconditional love

Come listen to my truest thoughts, my truest feelings
All my peers doing years beyond drug dealing
How many caskets can we witness
Before we see it's hard to live
This life without God, so we must ask forgiveness
Ask mama I got this urge to die
Witness the tears falling free from my eyes
Before she could reply
Though we were born without a silver spoon
My broken down TV, show cartoons in my living room (hey)
One day I hope to make it
A player in this game
Mama don't cry, long as we try
Maybe things change
Perhaps it's just a fantasy
A life where we don't need no welfare
Shit with our whole family
Maybe it's me that caused it
The fighting and the hurting
In my room crying cause I didn't want to be a burden
Watch mama open up her arms to hug me
And I ain't worried bout a damn thang, with unconditional love

In this game the lesson's in your eyes to see
Though things change, the future's still inside of me
We must remember that tomorrow comes after the dark
So you will always be in my heart, with unconditional love

Just got the message you've been calling all week
Been out here hustling on these streets, ain't had a chance to speak
But you know, with you and me it's on G
We could never be enemies, cause you been such a good friend to me
Where would I be without my dogs
No wonder why when times get hard
Cause it ain't easy being who we are
Driven by my ambitions, desire higher positions
So I proceed to make Gs, eternally in my mission
Is to be more than just a rap musician
The elevation of today's generation
If could make 'em listen
Prison ain't what we need, no longer stuck in greed
Time to play and strategize, my family's gotta eat
When we make something out of nothing
No pleasure in the suffering, neighborhood would be good
If they could cut out all the busting
The liquor and the weed the cussing
Sending love out to my block
The struggle never stops

I'll probably never understand ya ways
With everyday I swear I hear ya
Trying to change your ways while gettin paid at the same time
Just had a baby with the same eyes
Something inside, please let me die these are strange times
How come I never made it
Maybe it's the way the played it in my heart
I knew one day I gotta be a star
My hopes and all my wishes
So many vivid pictures, and all the currency
I'll never even get to see
This fast life soon shatters
Cause after all the lights and screams
Nothing but my dreams matter
Hoping for better days
Maybe a peaceful night, baby don't cry
Cause everythang gonna be alright
Just lay your head on my shoulder
Don't worry bout a thang baby
Girl I'm a soldier
(huh ej)
Never treated me bad, no matter who I was
You still came with that, unconditional love

There are some things that are all about you.

12 year old scotch served in a snifter with an ice cold Bass, a three dollar cigar (maduro) that smells like $30 and smokes like $20, a pack of Gallois cigarettes, a prime cut fillet, a woman with a black nylon Prada purse, a light cashmere sweater (taupe), and a pair of pure white well fitted jeans and black jimmy choo sandals (pascal flat) – don’t forget the French manicure. I’m a sucker for corn rows and manicured toes . . .

All is well !!


U.S. watches China's oil demand with concern

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - China's global quest for crude oil is acceptable as long as the Asian nation develops the deposits and doesn't hoard them, a senior State Department official said on Tuesday. China, the world's second-biggest oil user behind the United States, has recently scoured the globe for oil deals in Canada, Latin America and Africa. Rapid Chinese oil demand growth was one of the factors that pushed U.S. crude oil futures above $55 a barrel. "China's energy needs are going to be enormous in the future," said Christopher Hill, the State Department's assistant secretary for East Asia and the Pacific. "The question is, are they looking to develop energy or are they looking to take it off the market," Hill told a Senate Foreign Relations subcommittee hearing on China's growing economic might. China consumes more than 7 million barrels per day of crude oil, versus U.S. consumption of about 20 million bpd.


Analysts missed Chinese buildup

A highly classified intelligence report produced for the new director of national intelligence concludes that U.S. spy agencies failed to recognize several key military developments in China in the past decade, The Washington Times has learned.
The report was created by several current and former intelligence officials and concludes that U.S. agencies missed more than a dozen Chinese military developments, according to officials familiar with the report.
The report blames excessive secrecy on China's part for the failures, but critics say intelligence specialists are to blame for playing down or dismissing evidence of growing Chinese military capabilities.

A highly classified intelligence report produced for the new director of national intelligence concludes that U.S. spy agencies failed to recognize several key military developments in China in the past decade, The Washington Times has learned.
The report was created by several current and former intelligence officials and concludes that U.S. agencies missed more than a dozen Chinese military developments, according to officials familiar with the report.
The report blames excessive secrecy on China's part for the failures, but critics say intelligence specialists are to blame for playing down or dismissing evidence of growing Chinese military capabilities.

Among the failures highlighted in the study are:

China's development of a new long-range cruise missile.

•The deployment of a new warship equipped with a stolen Chinese version of the U.S. Aegis battle management technology.

•Deployment of a new attack submarine known as the Yuan class that was missed by U.S. intelligence until photos of the submarine appeared on the Internet.

•Development of precision-guided munitions, including new air-to-ground missiles and new, more accurate warheads.

China's development of surface-to-surface missiles for targeting U.S. aircraft carrier battle groups.

•The importation of advanced weaponry, including Russian submarines, warships and fighter-bombers.

According to officials familiar with the intelligence report, the word "surprise" is used more than a dozen times to describe U.S. failures to anticipate or discover Chinese arms development.

Coming soon: The China Section

Too many arrows and not enough olives

The US with a population approaching 300 million has only 10 million production workers. That means Americans are consuming the products of other countries labor. In the 21st century the US economy has been unable to create jobs in export and import-competitive industries. US job growth is confined to nontradable domestic services. This movement of the American labor force toward Third World occupations in domestic services has dire implications both for US living standards and for America's status as a superpower. Toward the end of the 20th century three developments came together that are rapidly moving high productivity, high value-added jobs that pay well away from the US to Asia: the collapse of world socialism, which vastly increased the supply of labor available to US capital; the rise of the high speed Internet; the extraordinary international mobility of US capital and technology.


On the Anti Lynching Resolution

Over a dozen US Senators refuse to sign on to anti-lynching resolution.
John and Atrios mentioned earlier about how a dozen or so senators didn't want a roll call vote on a resolution apologizing for the lack of congressional action to stop lynchings. The resolution, introduced by Democratic Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu, eventually passed Monday evening on a voice vote. The AP mentions nary a word about the fainthearted senators who didn't allegedly want to be on the record opposing lynchings.

Surprise, surprise, surprise!

Who ever thought they might want to lynch a nigger in Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, Arkansas, Virginia, North and South Carolina, Texas and Louisiana? I mean who knew? I had no idea they might feel this way. I guess I should have had a clue.

Its not the fact that Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.); Richard Shelby (R-Ala.); Mel Martinez (R-Fl.); Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.); Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.); Thad Cochran (R-Miss.); Trent Lott (R-Miss.); Elizabeth Dole (R-N.C.); James Inhofe (R-Ok.); Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.); John Cornyn (R-Tx.); Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Tx.); John Warner (R-Va.); and John Rockefeller (D-W.Va.), are die hard racist. It’s the fact that the Senate couldn’t manage a roll call vote on this issue. By the way it’s not too late; you can still pass an anti-lynching law. Because, guess what, there are folk still being lynched.

It may be hard for your average person to really get a good idea of why this is an important issue. This might have to do with the gross misunderstanding of race and racism that persist in this country.

Very nearly every bit of wealth ever produced in America is grounded in racism and genocide and was supported in one form or another by the practice of lynching. Without slavery there would be no wall street, no commodity exchange, and no major banking firms. When the entire wealth of a country is rooted in the surplus value created from forced labor there is no possible way to escape that debt other than radical denial.

Let’s say that the price of cotton begins to fall. We are somewhere in the south (pick a state) or imagine that textile prices are down, timber prices are up and you are anywhere in the north (pick a state). So now that prices are down in cotton, material costs are up in ship building and textile manufacturing what do you do? Well any good capitalist will cut costs wherever he or she can. Wages are always a controllable cost. If a white man costs $1.00/ hr and a black man costs $0.25/hr guess who is going to be building boats, picking cotton, chopping trees, weaving cloth , making furniture, cleaning houses, picking lettuce, cooking your food, taking care of your children . . . you get the point. Well while wages drop to near starvation levels white folk become agitated and instead of going to see the factory owner or the plantation owner the person who no longer needs to hire them, they turn their frustration elsewhere. This is the heart of lynching – an irrational hatred born of frustration at the incommensurability of American whiteness. Few people realize that to be white in America requires an enormous apparatus of suppression, repression, selective violence, terror and tyranny. The very idea of “American exceptionalism”, this pathological notion that there is a god that watches over this country and blesses her endeavors and is white, is rooted in an insane pathology that has its roots in denial and repression. America was born of thieves and pirates, genocidal, rampaging, murderers that “cleansed” the land mass of its indigenous population and removed and destroyed one quarter of the population of the African continent all for profit. Not for food, not for shelter, not for water, not for their safety or well being – for profit – a fiction.

So when this white man determines that he can no longer get hired at $1.00/ hr and will not work for $0.25/ hr and his bills will not wait another minute. He becomes frustrated, angered, unhinged, pathological, and homicidal. He is faced with a reality he was never raised to contend with – that he and the object of his disdain (niggers, wetbacks, spics, coons, chinks, gooks, whatever colorful name is in fashion at the time) are the same in society, just a cog in the wheel. When white folk are reduced to existing in a world the majority of Americans (North, Central, South) live in, they lose their mind. They hang people from trees, tie them behind trucks and drag them on the ground until their head is shorn from their body, they do things like dip you in hot tar and, while the skin is still bubbling free from the body and every nerve ending is raw with pain, roll you in feathers, or they place you in a barrel with nails hammered in and roll you down a hill, they beat you senseless on the street because you asked why you were pulled over, they fabricate new laws to prosecute you with because the last time you were acquitted, they give you ten years to life for less than a gram of cocaine, they shoot at you as you try to find work across the border . . . yeah we still need an anti-lynching law.

I’m not so mad at those who would not sponsor the bill they have made their position clear. I’m mad at those who never passed an anti-lynching law – fuck your apologies and resolutions. If human life is cheap enough to be ultimately indefensible against economic interest then to hell with it – you reap what you sow.

No more water . . .

Turning Up the Sleaze

Molly Ivins

A jaw-dropping article in the Texas Observer shows that two lobbying clients of Jack Abramoff paid $25,000 to Grover Norquist's group for a lunch date and meeting with President George W. Bush in May 2001. Abramoff brought the Indian chiefs to the White House at the request of Norquist, a leading "movement conservative" in Washington. In addition, Abramoff obtained $2.5 million in contributions from the Indians for a nonprofit foundation run by his wife and himself.

The White House guests were the chiefs of two of the six casino-rich Indian tribes represented by Abramoff and his partner Michael Scanlon, former top aide to House Majority Whip Tom DeLay. The $25,000 check from the Coushatta tribe of Louisiana is made out to Americans for Tax Reform, an anti-tax group founded and directed by Norquist.

Should deadly viruses be used to treat cystic fibrosis?

Regulators in the US could soon be asked to approve a human trial of gene therapy for cystic fibrosis that uses a hybrid of the HIV and Ebola viruses. Tests on monkeys show the hybrid virus delivers genes to the lungs far more efficiently than any other method developed so far. And while the idea of combining two killer viruses sounds horrifying, the risks should be low. Despite much effort, no one has managed to develop an effective form of gene therapy to treat the lung problems of people with cystic fibrosis. The condition is caused by a mutation in the CFTR gene, and one of the problems in developing a treatment is getting a working version of CFTR into a high enough proportion of cells to restore normal lung function.


Quantum cryptography network gets wireless link

The world's first quantum encryption computer network has been expanded to include a wireless link that uses quantum communications codes.

Most modern cryptography rests upon the difficulty of solving very complex mathematical problems used to encrypt data. This makes it theoretically vulnerable to being hacked using dramatic mathematical or computing breakthroughs. By contrast, quantum cryptography near guarantees communications security, using quirks of quantum physics to thwart eavesdropping attempts.

The wireless connection was added to the DARPA Quantum Network, a quantum fibre-optic network buried beneath the ground in Massachusetts, US. The network was built by US company BBN Technologies with funding from the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). It now links 10 different sites, including BBN's offices, Harvard University and Boston University.


Iran to build bicycle factory in Venezuela

Madrid, June 10, IRNA-Iranian companies will build factories in Venezuela to produce bicycles for that country and the Latin America region. Venezuelan Minister of Light Industry and Mine Victor Alvarez, declaring the news, said, "President Chavez has asked ministers of commerce and light industry to follow seriously the project of manufacturing Iranian bicycles in Venezuela". Venezuela has recently commissioned an Iranian tractor assembling factory. Establishment of a cement factory, constructing residential buildings and implementing some industrial and construction projects by Iranian experts are parts of cooperation plans between the two countries.