Saturday, August 19, 2006

PostSecret is weekly required viewing.

"(PostSecret is an ongoing community art project where people mail in their secrets anonymously on one side of a homemade postcard.)"

Angry German Kid vs. Numa Numa Guy [Battle of the Internets]

Here it is! The clip the world has been waiting for! It's the ultimate showdown, with a few surprises!

Spring Break Mishap [Cause ya never know...]

Spring Break Mishap

Shakira - Hips Dont Lie spoof

lotsa folks feeling the music...

Of COURSE the CIA sells drugs...

[I have a t-shirt that says so and everything...]

The CIA-Contra-Crack Connection, 10 Years Later:
"Ten years ago today, one of the most controversial news articles of the 1990s quietly appeared on the front page of the San Jose Mercury News. Titled 'Dark Alliance,' the headline ran beneath the provocative image of a man smoking crack — superimposed on the official seal of the CIA.

The three-part series by reporter Gary Webb linked the CIA and Nicaragua's Contras to the crack cocaine epidemic that ripped through South Los Angeles in the 1980s.

...All three major U.S. dailies, The Times included, debunked a claim that Webb actually never made — that the CIA deliberately unleashed the crack epidemic on black America. The controversy over this non-assertion obscured Webb's substantive points about the CIA knowingly doing business south of the border with Nicaraguans involved in the drug trade up north...

Meanwhile, spurred on by Webb's story, the CIA conducted an internal investigation that acknowledged in March 1998 that the agency had covered up Contra drug trafficking for more than a decade. Although the Washington Post and New York Times covered the report — which confirmed key chunks of Webb's allegations — the L.A. Times ignored it for four months, and largely portrayed it as disproving the "Dark Alliance" series. "We dropped the ball on that story," said Doyle McManus, the paper's Washington bureau chief, who helped supervise its response to "Dark Alliance.""

It'll change everything you ever thought about Jean Luc Picard.

It cannot be unseen. Genius.

"A song dedicated to Captain Jean Luc Picard"

Friday, August 18, 2006

I am Complex. [And Simple.]

Current favorite CD:

Feedback by Jurassic 5.

[Man, I did not realize just how much my soul was craving some old school hip hop.]

Current favorite song:

Breathe Me by Sia.

Cause it's a great song, yeah, but it's anchored in my head now with the Peaceful Warrior movie trailer.

But can't forget that "We Used to be Friends" by the Dandy Warhols makes me sing along with it everytime, due in large part to my potentially unhealthy Veronica Mars fixaton.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Belief is the End of Thought

Fred On Everything:
"I found myself some time ago under social circumstances in a group that included an angry radical feminist, which is to say a radical feminist. Out of nowhere that I remember, she announced, “Men are sexist pigs.” Such assertions are par for the species.

It was not easy to know how to respond. She was clearly attacking. You don’t insult a group some of whose members are present unless you mean to offend... While “sexist” might be regarded with sufficient straining as a political category, “pig” is a schoolyard insult. The comment was simply ill-bred. So are feminists.

I could have responded, “Women are useless bitches.” The problem is that I don’t think that women are either useless or bitches. A few are, yes. A few men are sexist pigs, and I don’t like them either. True, I don’t care for some of the attitudes that seem to characterize a lot of American women. This is far thinking that women are pigs or bitches.

...Much of human behavior is templated. Certain kinds of personality do certain things. They can't help it. Common templates are the True Believer, the Hater, and the Victim. The salient point is that the template comes first, the content second and sometimes almost as an afterthought. They are like empty forms waiting to be filled in.

The True Believer needs to believe in something truly and, really, doesn’t much care what: Christianity, evolution, Islam, Marxism or market forces. He needs the certitude. He doesn’t need to hate anyone, however. For example, evolutionists do not.

...Haters seldom know much about those they hate. It doesn’t matter to them, and just gets in the way. As anti-Semites are clueless about Jews, so feminists are clueless about men. Anti-Semites know that Jews rub their hands and say “heheheh” and want to destroy Western civilization. Feminists know that men don’t have feelings and want to oppress women, and hurt them, and degrade them. Yet they (both) think they know the hated enemy. They both pour forth half-truths, thudding clichés, carefully selected facts, and abject foolishness, and both are blankly unable to see the other side’s point of view or to concede it any virtue at all."

Money and Perspective

Beyond Marketing: What does the Gold Plated Cigar Lighter Mean? or, Your Money Test: Part Two:
"'Let me tell you what I think,' I began. 'I have a belief in my head that says the more money I spend, the more money I receive. So when I spend six hundred dollars, I start looking for the six thousand dollars coming around the corner.'

'But you can use that money for other things, like feeding people,' the skeptic said.

'That's a comment from a scarcity mind,' I said. 'I believe you can help feed people and spend six hundred dollars on a lighter. The only limits are self-created ones.'

By now you can see why I asked you how it felt to hear about my lighter. It was simply a way to hold up a mirror to your own beliefs. That shiny gold lighter reflects your money IQ.

If you like your beliefs, keep them.

If you don't, consider taking on new ones."

Rich people need better hobbies.

But me, I'm a conspiracy theorist when I tell people about stuff like this...

Boing Boing: Western millionaires plotted Equatorial Guinea coup as a game:
"Salon reviews a fascinating-sounding book called The Wonga Coup, about a gang of rich western thugs who proposed a competition to hire mercenaries and topple the government of Equatorial Guinea and loot its treasuries -- the winner got to keep the country's wealth."

Via Amazon:

The most terrifying thing about this chronicle of a failed coup attempt in Equatorial Guinea is that it's not a Graham Greene novel but a true story... An irresistibly lurid tale is peopled with bellicose profiteers, particularly of the neocolonialist sort from Europe and South Africa, with long histories of investment in oil, diamonds and war-for-profit. Among these self-styled gentleman adventurers are Margaret Thatcher's son, Sir Mark Thatcher, and "rag-and-bone intelligence men" who linger in hotel bars, "picking up scraps of information... selling them on to willing buyers, whether corporate or government." ...As he lifts the curtain to the backrooms of power in postcolonial Africa, the reader finds that not much has changed on the continent since 1618, when the "Company of Adventurers of London Trading to the Ports of Africa" became the first private company to colonize Africa for profit.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Reactions versus emotions.

Great observation...

"...he must certainly have encountered the Buddhist idea of suppressing emotions. But, having never really experienced what that means, he had no way to envision it but to imagine that getting rid of emotions would turn a person into something like a robot.

It doesn't. But it's very hard to explain this matter. It may be the use of the word 'emotion' itself that creates confusion. It's a natural reaction to laugh and cry. But we tend to abuse our natural reactions by manipulating them with thought, turning them into what we call emotions. We hang on to our happiness and sadness far longer than is healthy. We long for happiness and fear sadness, thus missing out on most of our lives which are neither very happy nor very sad. We crave those emotional highs and lows.

When we avoid this 'emotional abuse' our lives become much more stable and comfortable."


Details at the link... worth reading.

Life is a Journal or Self Help and Personal Development for Lazy People.: 10 tips on leading a balanced life.:
"1) Go home from work on time.
2) Don’t be a yes person.
3) Go to bed and get up at the same time everyday.
4) Slow down.
5) Don’t buy into the culture around you if you don’t want to.
6) Create your own sub-culture involving your friends and family.
7) Recognize you have the right to be healthier than those around you.
8) Do something meaningful with your spare time.
9) Let go of the need to buy the next big thing.
10) Develop compassion, patience and tolerance for your fellow people."

Tonight, the world just continues to piss me off.

How, I swear in the name of all that's holy and good, do these fear-mongering, politically manipulative schmucks continue to be in charge?

So, to sum up...

No bombs.

No passports.

No tickets.

Plot details extracted via torture, that oh so reliable method.


Craig Murray - The UK Terror plot: what's really going on?:
"None of the alleged terrorists had made a bomb. None had bought a plane ticket. Many did not even have passports, which given the efficiency of the UK Passport Agency would mean they couldn't be a plane bomber for quite some time.

In the absence of bombs and airline tickets, and in many cases passports, it could be pretty difficult to convince a jury beyond reasonable doubt that individuals intended to go through with suicide bombings, whatever rash stuff they may have bragged in internet chat rooms.

What is more, many of those arrested had been under surveillance for over a year - like thousands of other British Muslims. And not just Muslims. Like me. Nothing from that surveillance had indicated the need for early arrests.

Then an interrogation in Pakistan revealed the details of this amazing plot to blow up multiple planes - which, rather extraordinarily, had not turned up in a year of surveillance. Of course, the interrogators of the Pakistani dictator have their ways of making people sing like canaries. As I witnessed in Uzbekistan, you can get the most extraordinary information this way. Trouble is it always tends to give the interrogators all they might want, and more, in a desperate effort to stop or avert torture. What it doesn't give is the truth."

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Every. Single. Thing.

Via Totally Unique Thoughts:
"For every single time-space manifestation, from catching a cold to the accumulation of massive personal wealth, a shifting of props and persons must be choreographed from here with mind-boggling precision. Taking into account not only all of your other thoughts, beliefs and expectations as they change from moment to moment, but those of everyone else on the planet, so that not one of you, not one, is ever denied getting exactly what they think about.

And to answer the often unasked question, "Yes, you can still have it all, no matter what others in your life might think, say or do.""

Monday, August 14, 2006

I love Dick. Author Philip K. Dick, that is. What did you think I meant, you perv?

Guardian Unlimited Books | By genre | Philip Purser-Hallard on Philip K Dick and drugs:
"...In 1960s California it was inevitable that a writer like Dick would become a counterculture guru, expected - practically obliged, in fact - to flaunt a drug-rich lifestyle of his own, and he rose enthusiastically to that challenge. His writing had always been fuelled by vast quantities of amphetamines, but he soon branched out into marijuana, mescaline, LSD, sodium pentothal and even PCP...

...Dick's insights into the true nature of reality were spectacular and varied... only Dick could have constructed an elaborate conspiracy theory out of his momentary confusion as to whether his bathroom light had a wall switch or a pull-cord. (Since he'd never lived in a house with a bathroom pull-cord, he decided he must be experiencing memories from an alternative reality. It seemed the obvious explanation.)

...Strangely enough, in 1974 the other drugs in his life were put to shame by a rank outsider: vitamin C, under the influence of which he had perhaps his most celebrated hallucinatory episode.

...Taking a truly enormous dose of vitamin C to help him cope, Dick believed that pink laser beams from space were firing information into his brain, beginning with thousands of paintings flashing past his eyes - works by Klee, Kandinsky and Picasso, but far more than any of them could have painted in a lifetime.

For the rest of his life, Dick was obsessed with explaining these events. Inspired by the delivery woman's jewellery, he decided he'd been contacted by God, who wanted him to join a cabal of "secret Christians" who knew the hidden truth about reality. He came to believe that a member of this secret society was living inside his head, much like "Fred" in Bob Arctor's. For a while he suspected this other personality was James Pike, the late Bishop of California, an episcopal renegade who'd marched with Martin Luther King, been censured for supposedly heretical beliefs and died in the Israeli desert while seeking the truth behind the Dead Sea Scrolls. Dick based his final novel, The Transmigration Of Timothy Archer, [The Archer book is really, really good - Rob] around his extraordinary life.

Dick's interpretation of his visions changed on an almost daily basis. In Valis he adopted the position that God is actually an ancient satellite planted in orbit by three-eyed aliens, and that the true year is sometime in 1AD, the 1900 years of intervening history being an illusion created by Satan."

"Tough day... great opportunity."

The Daily Show is my God.

[In that it speaks from on high with great wisdom. Comedic wisdom, but still...]

Yeah, I'm a geek...

...but that's never been in Question, has it?


A day and a half after we returned home to Japan started off Obon, which required the obligatory going over to Bachan's and eating entirely too much...

Via Wikipedia:

O-bon (お盆, O-bon?) or only Bon (盆, Bon?) is a Japanese Buddhist holiday to honor the departed spirits of one's ancestors. This Buddhist festival has evolved into a family reunion holiday during which people from the big cities return to their home towns and visit and clean their ancestors' graves. Traditionally including a dance festival, it has existed in Japan for more than 500 years. It is held from July 13 (August 13 according to the lunar calendar still observed in many regions) to the 15th...

6-3, 6-4

Played a little tennis with my niece Erika, where I, of course STOMPED her - see above score :) [HI ERIKA!]

Lot of fun, considering I hadn't played in about 5 years or so...

Oh, and Erika, remember, move your feet and work on your backhand!

[She's got a kick ass serve and a nice drop shot tho']

Because Sachiko-Mama loves some pictures of her PeeWee

[Tell me, do I look happy?]

Hangin' out at Dad's

North Carolina

Couple pics from Sandy's roadtrip up to the NC/VA border...

With age comes maturity...

Like when your wife covers her ears and says "lalalalalalalalala.... I can't hear you."

A highlight of any trip back to America.

March of the nephew and neices.

*YEAH, YEAH, YEAH... It should be "nieces"... I KNOW THAT NOW*
*But if I change the title, the link I sent out wouldn't work anymore, would it?*

You know, if I took time to think about it, I might start to feel a little old.



I was lucky that when I was back in NC, my older brother Bryan and his family came down from VA, my Uncle Joe, Aunt Jane, cousin Jeff and his girlfriend Alexandra all came over from various climes and places and my Dad and Peggy all came out to my brother Jeff's place in Swansboro/Emerald Isle and we all got to spend the day chatting, hanging out and catching up.

Kudos to Dale for the kick-ass hostessing and Jeff for the kick-ass coordinating.

Much thanks.

All American Meals

The All American Breakfast - Fritos and Krispy Kreme. I kid you not.

The Golden Corral buffet was a source of great joy.

Sandy's Roadtrip to SC to see Susan...

Obligatory cute animal picture.

Cute pic, but what is up with that hair? [Like I can talk?]

This is the shower Jr uses and does not clean.

He is filthy and disgusting.

And now I have shamed him in front of whole world.

Clean your shower man, that's just sad. Baby Jesus weeps.

Obligatory cute kid pictures.

Gayle and her little girl Katy.

With another midget on the way. [Better you than me :)]