Saturday, August 08, 2009

The collective lizard brain emerges

The darkest, most primitive part of the human nervous system, oft called the reptilian brain, is rising to the forefront as reason, logic, and fact are all ignored or cast aside before fear and violent reaction. The most outrageous falsehoods, distortions, and blind prejudices are being pulled out of people's asses so fast that the mind reels. What is worse, it goes unchallenged.

As Hunter writes today:
I sure to hell hope all these news outlets are being paid off or something, because I would hate to find out, ten years from now, that they really were ignoring the circuslike butchering of democracy out of star-spangled, crap-flinging, head-in-the-ass incompetence. They had better be on the take, and not really this goddamn unwilling to do their jobs just as a matter of dimwitted, bullshit-peddling laziness.


Almighty God, you proclaim your truth in every age by many voices: Direct, in our time, we pray, those who speak where many listen and write what many read; that they may do their part in making the heart of this people wise, its mind sound, and its will righteous; to the honor of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Dear God, have mercy upon us.

--the BB

Heart thread - 08/08/2009 - updated

David writes to his prayer partners, which is all of us.
writing this morning, i am so profoundly aware of what a vital and great blessing it is to have each and every one of you in my life, to be able to call on you & to commend each of these individual to your loving prayers and practice. so, I would ask prayers and practice for

1) my cousin Frank, still undergoing the debilitating effects of the imperfect genetic match of his therapy to beat lukemia; for my neighbor Robert, facing another round of raiotherapy for his lukemia
2) Jane, who this week exprienced both the first anniversary of the death of her 23 year old son Ian (heart attack) & a cancer diagnosis
3) Dorian (23 yo) showing symptoms of new damage by her MS
4) Jim and his family
5) Urs in Oftrignen Switzerland who is dealing with the effects of a pernicious MS diagnosis and who appears to have given up
6) Merline, who appears in real danger of losing her house before finding livable employment
7) the people of Congo (peace,justice & healing), Iran (freedom and justice) Somalia (peace, justice, healing)
8) Denise Jacques for a peaceful death
9) for the people of the 'developed world' as they struggle with the 'new ecconomic reality' which can no longer support such exaggerated inequalities and injustice
10) for livable employment: Anne-Chantal, Jane, Anne-Marie, Rhoda, Eleanor, David S., William, Lori, Susan, Shu Tan, Isabel, Dan, Steven, Dermit, myself.

with my heart-felt thanks,

I want to underline the humble last item on his list: David, who holds so many other people in a web of prayer. I have gone without employment for long periods of time, I have almost lost my home on more than one occasion, I have struggled with the temptation to despair. May God uphold and sustain him, the holy angels guard and defend him, the Holy Spirit guide him, the light of Christ shine within and around him, friends love him, and may he have and find what he needs.

My friend Tom's brother-in-law Bill has very late stage terminal cancer. I ask your prayers for grace-filled days and a peaceful death.

I would also ask for "moving graces" for a friend who needs to disentangle from one place to move to another and be with her honey full time. Life in transit gets tiring.

Almighty God, we entrust all who are dear to us to thy never-failing care and love, for this life and the life to come, knowing that thou art doing for them better things than we can desire or pray for; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


--the BB

Friday, August 07, 2009

Thought for the day: 7 August 2009

I am not encouraged that we live in a time when the phrase "barking mad" seems applicable to huge chunks of the populace.

--the BB

Significant news

No, I definitely do not mean Michael Jackson's toxicology report. (Sweet suffering Jesus, my coworkers were discussing it today.)

Juan Cole shares this at Informed Comment:
But the really big news out of Pakistan in the last week was the finding of the restored Supreme Court that Gen. Pervez Musharraf's emergency decree of November, 2007, was unconstitutional. The ruling has larger implications, in perhaps suggesting that all of Pakistan's military coups have been unconstitutional. This is the first time that the Pakistani Supreme Court has so forcefully stood up to the military.

If the American press and political establishment was serious about supporting democracy in Pakistan and the Muslim World, we'd have seen an avalanche of comment praising the Supreme Court ruling as a victory for democracy. I did a keyword search at Lexis under television transcripts and could not find any evidence that anyone in national television or radio except Julie McCarthy at NPR even mentioned the epochal Pakistani Supreme Court ruling!


And despite it being non-news in the US, the Pakistani Supreme Court ruling is a bigger turning point in Pakistani history than any we have seen since 1947.

If any of you are unfamiliar with Juan Cole's blog as a wonderful source for news of the Middle East, and commentary from the media of that region, get yourself on over there!

Let us pray for the people of Pakistan.

--the BB

Retail therapy

I did not know that the local Apple Store was having a tax-free sale this weekend, so imagine my surprise when I drove there after work and had to stand in line to get in.

Yep, I've been lusting for a new desktop. My previous desktop computer pretty much died several years ago. When the laptop I had been using also died, I returned from my years on the dark side and got a MacBook Pro (home to Apple!). It is the only computer I have used now for some time. I have also chewed up most of its memory, which slows it down, of course.

Decided there were shekels enow to do the deed, so after work I headed straight to that occasion of sin in ABQ Uptown, the Apple Store. Walked out with a new iMac (see illustration above - I am sure they will allow use of their trademarked image in such a shameless spot as this), a new printer (the previous one has some problems), a new backup device (the old one is not big enough as I keep expanding my files), an updated version of Office for Mac. All of this is sittiing unopened as I did not want to spend all night setting up. I will be in Bernalillo and Santa Fe tomorrow, returning Sunday. So you all know what I will be up to Sunday afternoon and evening.

The tax-free deal involves only certain items under $1000, so it applied to my printer and my backup device only. I got the "biggest" version of the 24" iMac, i.e., lots of memory. When it comes to computer memory I am a total size queen. More is more. And I need lots.

I am looking forward to two things: a bigger screen and speed. And not worrying about how much memory my photos take (my pics are 8MB each, so you can imagine). I suspect this may make the process of writing the remaining novels more pleasurable too.

Apple really needs to make keyboards for large-handed people. They have an extended keyboard with the numeric keypad but you have to buy it extra (I already have one, trust me). Don't they sell anything to accountants? I type by touch EXCEPT for numerals, which I almost always input with the keypad. I worked in accounting too many years (and practiced learning ten key by touch for too many hours) to go back to hunting and pecking. Do NOT get me started on the topic of typing on laptops or my blazing heat of a thousand white-hot suns hatred of trackpads.

Btw, retail therapy works. I feel much more chipper than I have in weeks.

Tomorrow I breakfast with friends from the Bay Area, then off to Santa Fe to enjoy the city, chill with the BFF, dine out, and catch Mozart's Don Giovanni at the Santa Fe Opera.

--the BB

O sinner man, where you gonna run to?

The trickster god has overturned the battlefield.

Three armies have clashed. Lives have been lost. A whole lot of fleeing has gone on.
Č’s troops had claimed the field. Though beyond exhaustion, warriors gathered all available wood for pyres and laid the dead upon them. The task could only be begun and would continue into the next day, perhaps beyond. Healers moved about, hoping to rescue and restore life where possible, or to ease passing if not. [The capital] had been marked by banners of mourning white when armies arrived; now ashes marked the faces of all who were in or around the city.

There was no victory yet; only movement. Everything up to now had been preparation. This was the beginning of the deciding battles. F. did not open its gates.

[For those noting his unfingered playing, he explains in comments at YouTube that "The G is lowered to F to make it an Open D minor. Thanks for noticing that."]

My fictive parallel world has its parallel "Christ event" but the missionaries have not yet arrived in this part of that world. (Soon, very soon.) So the first three and a half books are all in a "pre-Christian" setting: a world with its own mythology, rituals, piety, and imagery.

Part of the great fun of creating something like this is pondering questions like "how do people pray?" and "how do people swear?" and "what mythic imagery do they use to speak of natural phenomena?" and "what language expresses amazement?"

The result is that I now think in some of the imagery of that fictional world.

Like Hinduism, say, the world view recognizes only one ultimate reality with many manifestations. There are thus many deities yet it is not truly polytheistic. Behind and in everything is The One.

The deities are the constellations. The twelfth sign of the zodiac is the Trickster. When the cycle has run its course everything is upset allowing newness to break forth again.

And so the Trickster did his work in the events that unfolded around the capital that twenty-first day of the Herb Month in the sixth year of King Digrak of Hlv and the third year of King Avroth III of Thyelos.

(There is no end of back story.)

Sweet dreams, my boisterous bonobos!

--the BB

How could I resist?

The idea, popularized on numerous blogs (practically everywhere I turn today), belongs to Lionel Deimel. His version has delicious simplicity and is easy to grasp in a moment. I had to play with color (don't I always?) and got naughty by inserting some of the English text of the Donation of Pepin and affixing signatures of +Cantuar, +Abuja, +Walsingham, +Kampala, and +Dunelm. This is all for the church history and trivia buffs (and because I cannot resist snark).

Click on Lionel's name to see his original (which he encourages us all to use).

Anyone is free to use this image.

I don't suppose I need to tell any readers here how I feel about the idea of an Anglican covenant.

--the BB

Thursday, August 06, 2009

John Brennan's non-answer

Just because I have not posted much about FISA and warrantless wiretapping lately you surely have not concluded that it no longer matters or that I have forgotten.

John Brennan is a holdover of Bush's counterterrorism team now working for Obama. He speechified today and got asked a question.

You can read about Brennan's evasive response here. Emptywheel concludes:
Here, Brennan is suggesting either that the aspects of the program that have come out in the press aren't the aspects he was involved in, or that the reporting on it has been inaccurate. Or rather, "either" ... "and/or." No matter which conjunction you use, he's avoiding admitting he was involved in Bush's illegal surveillance program by simply claiming the parts he was involved in haven't been accurately portrayed, if they've been portrayed at all.

But worse than Gonzales, Brennan is making an appeal to following orders.

I fulfilled all my responsibilities at NCTC [National Counterterrorism Center] that I was asked to fulfill. ... And when I look back in terms of my service at the NCTC and those places I believe I fulfilled those responsibilities to the best of my abilities.

We don't really give a goddamn whether you fulfilled all the orders Dick Cheney gave you, Mr. Brennan. We want to know how many of those orders were illegal. How many of those orders did you know to be illegal?


--the BB


I remember putting up photos of the faces of the fallen along the church walls back when the Iraq count was somewhere around 580 or so. It seems a long, sad time ago.

08/06/09 :
DoD Identifies Navy Casualty
The Department of Defense announced today the death of a sailor who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. Petty Officer 3rd Class Anthony C. Garcia, 21, of Tyndall, Fla. died Aug. 5 while supporting combat operations in Farah Province, Afghanistan.

08/06/09 AP:
Attacks kill 4 U.S. troops, 15 Afghans
Four U.S. Marines were killed Thursday when a roadside bomb struck their vehicle in western Afghanistan, driving up Western military deaths at a pace that would make August one of the deadliest months of the war.

08/04/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualties (3 of 3)
Capt. Ronald G. Luce Jr., 27, of Fayetteville, N.C... of the Mississippi Army National Guard, and assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 20th Special Forces Group (Airborne), Jackson, Miss.

08/04/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualties (2 of 3)
Sgt. 1st Class Alejandro Granado, 42, of Fairfax, Va... of the Mississippi Army National Guard, and assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 20th Special Forces Group (Airborne), Jackson, Miss.

08/04/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualties (1 of 3)
Sgt. 1st Class Severin W. Summers III, 43, of Bentonia, Miss... of the Mississippi Army National Guard, and assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 20th Special Forces Group (Airborne), Jackson, Miss.

Still digging for truth

Marcy Wheeler notes that there might be a conflict of interest.
Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer's background has been a key topic of discussion in CREW's lawsuit to force DOJ to release Dick Cheney's interview with Patrick Fitzgerald. The problem is, DOJ forgot to reveal that Breuer had represented one of the people involved with issues directly related to Cheney's interview.
The allegedly qualified person informing the court of the "chilling effect" that releasing Cheney's interview with Fitzgerald might have in the future was involved in representing someone related to the case - something the Department of Justice failed to mention.

How many of you remember, by the way, that W asked Cheney to find him a good vice-presidential running mate and Cheney nominated himself? Dick Cheney is a self-appointed candidate placed in power by the Rehnquist Supreme Court. Don't you love democracy?

--the BB

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

The place is so ambiguous

The young lady at the center of this adventure "returns home," if you could call it that.
An hour before sunset progress seemed to halt. The leaders of the army threaded their way to the front to see what had happened but Č., T., and a few others knew what they would see. As the road curved about an ancient stand of oaks, the fields surrounding the capital revealed themselves. The familiar outline of the city could be seen in the distance.

Č., who had been caught playing on the Lion Throne when not much older than Š., looked now at the place of her birth, her former home, a world of terrifying memories. She felt her stomach lurch and forced herself to remain calm. V. watched apprehensively.

Her eyes moistened as she thought of her mother and the night in the dungeon when G. swiftly kissed her farewell and departed forever, leaving Č. in the charge of total strangers.

At this point the basting threads are pulled and the banner of the Black Lion is revealed without the brisure that proclaimed our princess as the third child. She is now visually proclaimed to have the title in her own right, to be Her Magnificence, the new Black Lion. She has, up to this point, refused to be called by the title. Now she can no longer pretend it is not happening.

Let us pray for children forced to grow up too soon.

Sweet dreams, my felicitous ferrets!

--the BB

Feast of St Oswald of Northumbria

The Mad One has a lovely post up on St Oswald of Northumbria, in the context of which today's prayer list is found. I commend it to you all.

As a former vicar of a church dedicated to St Cuthbert of Lindisfarne, I found myself caught up in the golden age of Northumbria, the era rich in saints and in cultural interaction and artistic production. When I was in Durham we had some day trips.

On one trip we stopped at Heavenfield where Oswald was victorious over his foes. G'wan, read the story at Maddy's.

The church felt hallowed by prayer and leaflets in the pews invited visitors to pray. I did.

Oswald was considered a martyr. His head wound up buried with Cuthbert. Sometimes Cuddy is depicted holding Oswald's head.

We who have historic and spiritual roots in the British Isles owe a debt to this man. Our heritage would have been so very different if he had not invited Aidan to evangelize.

Holy Oswald, pray for us. Pray that Christ will teach us in our day to make the Good News available in a language understanded of the people as you once translated for Aidan.

Twelfth century mural of Oswald in Durham Cathedral (courtesy of Wikipedia)

--the BB

4330 - updated

08/04/09 DoD Identifies Army Casualty
Staff Sgt. Johnny R. Polk, 39, of Gulfport, Miss., died July 25 at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, Landstuhl, Germany, of wounds suffered when his vehicle was struck by an anti-tank grenade on July 23 in Kirkuk, Iraq.

FOB Hunter

DoD Identifies Army Casualty
Pvt. Keiffer P. Wilhelm, 19, of Plymouth, Ohio, died August 4 in Maysan province, Iraq, of injuries sustained from a non-combat related incident. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 13th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division...

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Heart thread - 08/04/2009

Let us pray for the repose of the soul of Gene and for those who love him. My friend Kathy writes:
Had some rather shocking news this afternoon. I opened up my email this afternoon and saw a message from my landlady, who lives up in Tacoma. She wrote about her son Gene, who three weeks ago installed a new airconditioner for us. He shot and killed himself on Saturday.

He had prostate cancer but was in a great deal of pain and his doctor was feeling very antsy about prescribing the heavy-duty medications she's been giving him to make life bearable. She was watching Michael Jackson's physician getting pursued for his prescriptions and she was telling Gene that she was thinking twice about it. I don't know if she did stop prescribing or not and if that was why he took his life, but it shocked me. I cried for his mother - no parent should outlive a child and for Gene and his brother. Terribly sad...
My California colleague and dear friend Amber Sturgess+ writes in the Diocese of California online newsletter:
A group of nine pilgrims representing the Diocese of California were scheduled to depart for Curitiba, Brazil, on Tuesday, August 4, to continue developing relationships with our Companion Diocese. Unfortunately, the pilgrimage/mission was cancelled on Friday due to a mounting flu epidemic in South Brazil. The Rt. Rev. Naudal Gomes, Bishop of Curitiba, reported that the State of Parana, as well as other southern states, have closed all public and private schools, universities, and government offices for two weeks. Public gatherings have been discouraged, including Mass, in an effort to curtail the spread of the virus. The flu epidemic has been excerbated by a severely cold winter. Brazilian homes are not equipped for low temperatures and have no heating system. To further complicate the the treatment and control of the epidemic, several different variations of the flu are occurring: H1N1, bird flu, and mutations of H1N1.

The Companion Diocese Committee asks for your prayers for the people of Brazil, and we encourage all churches to include the Diocese of Curitiba weekly in the Anglican cycle of prayer.
For the repose of the soul of Mary K. Miller, my dear friend Shivaun's mother. Shivaun was the church administrator at St Cuthbert's and made my life SO much nicer. I miss chatting (and swearing) in the church office with her there.
Unfortunately Mom lost her battle with cancer last night.. our Lovely Rose of Clare......I am sorry to inform you this way but I wanted to let you know asap....she died peacefully in her home, surrounded by her family....She received the last rites from Monsignor Linn and passed away shortly afterwards....just the way she wanted it...She put up a valiant fight but it was time....the hospice nurse says you die the way you lived and mom did just that....She fought for what she believed in, she loved her family and her faith was very important to her...It was an honor to call her Mom and to take care of her the last six years...Thank you once again for your support.. Mom had very specific instructions for her funeral and wake and we will be keeping you up to date for the celebration of her life.... and one helluva party with lots of craic..... Thanks again.
Offering thanksgiving for the release of the Americans held in North Korea.

For those murdered, in this event or any other, in any place throughout the world.
At Least 4 Dead in Pittsburgh-Area Shooting
New York Times - Anahad O'Connor - ‎1 hour ago‎
Joe Appel/Tribune Review, via AP Emergency workers helped a woman from the back of an ambulance after treating her in front of an LA Fitness location in Bridgeville, Pa.
For peaceful revolutions and the renewal of hope among peoples.
Thousands of Filipinos Stand in Rain for Cory Aquino's Funeral
Bloomberg - Francisco Alcuaz Jr., Max Estayo - ‎24 minutes ago‎
Aug. 5 (Bloomberg) -- Thousands of Filipinos stood in the rain on the streets of the capital, Manila, to bid farewell to Corazon Aquino, the former Philippine president who ousted dictator Ferdinand Marcos in 1986 ...
For peace in the Caucusus and throughout the world.
Georgia, South Ossetia trade jabs
CNN - Mike Sefanov - ‎40 minutes ago‎
MOSCOW, Russia (CNN) -- The former Soviet republic of Georgia and one of its breakaway territories, Russia-backed South Ossetia, accused each other of violating the cease-fire that ended last year's Russian-Georgian war, days before the conflict's ...
For a healthy, just, and peaceful relationship between the United States and Iran:
Iran confirms 3 Americans detained on Iran-Iraq border
Xinhua - Xiong Tong - ‎18 hours ago‎
4 (Xinhua) -- An Iranian official on Tuesday confirmed three US nationals have been detained by Iranian forces near the border with Iraq, the semi-official ...
For level playing fields:
SEC Starts Crackdown on 'Flash' Trading
New York Times - Charles Duhigg - ‎2 hours ago‎
The Securities and Exchange Commission has begun a widespread effort to crack down on stock trading techniques that regulators worry are giving sophisticated financiers, armed with lightning-fast computers, an edge that everyday ...

Please add your own petitions, intercessions, and thanksgivings in the comments.

--the BB

Monday, August 03, 2009

Read, Mark, Learn, Inwardly Digest

Health reform made simple
The essence is really quite simple: regulation of insurers, so that they can’t cherry-pick only the healthy, and subsidies, so that all Americans can afford insurance.

Everything else is about making that core work. Individual mandates are a way to prevent gaming of the system by people who don’t sign up until they’re sick; employer mandates a way to hold down the on-budget costs by preventing a rush by employers to drop insurance; the public option a way to create effective competition and hold costs down further.

But what it means for the individual will be that insurers can’t reject you, and if your income is relatively low, the government will help pay your premiums.

That’s it. Any commentator who whines that he just doesn’t understand it is basically saying that he doesn’t want to understand it.
--Paul Krugman
h/t to Digby

Our task is to know this, be able to articulate it, and to help others understand that it really is this simple.

--the BB


08/03/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualties (3 of 3)
Pvt. Patrick S. Fitzgibbon, 19, of Knoxville, Tenn...died Aug. 1 in Mushan Village, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when insurgents attacked their patrol with improvised explosive devices and rocket-propelled grenades.

08/03/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualties (2 of 3)
Pfc. Richard K. Jones, 21, of Person, N.C...died Aug. 1 in Mushan Village, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when insurgents attacked their patrol with improvised explosive devices and rocket-propelled grenades.

08/03/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualties (1 of 3)
Cpl. Jonathan M. Walls, 27, of West Lawn, Penn...died Aug. 1 in Mushan Village, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when insurgents attacked their patrol with improvised explosive devices and rocket-propelled grenades.

08/03/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualty
Spc. Alexander J. Miller, 21, of Clermont, Fla., died July 31 in Nuristan Province, Afghanistan, from wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his unit with rocket-propelled grenades and small-arms fire. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion...

The battle of the bands is so yesterday

We have dueling persons of power.

I wish to add that I had wizards and sorceresses in my tales in 1972-73, long before Harry Potter. Just saying.

It is time to undo the illusion woven earlier, the one convincing onlookers that the attackers were three times their actual number. The countess brings in her own sorceress.
Her arms suddenly flew up, startling those who watched. The great sleeves of her dress were as wings and she seemed a foot taller than a moment before. One soldier asked another under his breath, “Will she fly from the rampart?”

Firmly rooted, V. moved her hands apart, then together, then apart again, repeating the motion to include all below her. She was a perfect target for a [northern] arrow but none came near. A midnight blue mist seemed to form around her and sparks of the same shade would occasionally leap from her fingers as she began to chant:

Aon jel aon, ghe da.
Aon jel aon, ghe tri.
Aon jel aon, ghe ceith.
tolc jel aon.

At aon afaic, ghe da.
At aon afaic, ghe tri.
At aon afaic, ghe ceith.
Tolc at aon afaic.

One is one, not two.
One is one, not three.
One is one, not four.
One is only one.

One I see, not two.
One I see, not three.
One I see, not four.
I see only one.
She's good. "The armies battling before F. were roughly equal in size and T. was less frightening than he had been moments before." The guy whose spell she broke is sidling off in hopes that T's sister (my Lady Macbeth of ambition) does not notice what happened and most especially that she does not notice him.

Thank the stars the handwritten grammar from the 70s was next to my chair so I could do the chant. I can count from one to ten in Imperial Sivvaron but never really memorized my numbers in the language of the lands I write about.

Ambition, like most things, is a two-edged sword. As the desire to excel, it is wonderful. As the desire to prevail at the expense of others, no so much. This latter does not fare well in my books because fiction allows one the freedom to express narrative judgment. Which is not to say the good always prevails in my tales either.

Well there, you have no reason to read my books. I've gone and told you everything already. Silly me. Unless you are motivated to explore my world and get to know my characters and what motivates them. After all, there are very few plot lines in all of literature but there are many memorable stories.

I wonder what the topics of conversation are on the evenings of mead and knucklebones at Cousin Utdar's?

Are V. and V. happy, now that they are married? (Based on his bruises, I am guessing yes. What? You didn't know I have a straight S&M couple in the extended ducal family? Well then, you do still need to read.)

I am also curious about what goes through the mind of the queen who has lost all that matters and is about to renounce all that does not. We will see her again (book four) but it's the intervening period that remains a mystery of sorts.

Tomorrow night I will be off discussing systematic theology over Indian food, so there might not be an update.

Sweet dreams, my oscillating ocelots!

--the BB

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Linguistic games

This evening I played in the artificial language spoken throughout most of the region of my fictional world where my stories take place. A wizard is charged with creating an illusion and so he enters a trance, does weird hand gestures, and chants a very repetitious incantation, boring those who witness the ritual but quite effective nonetheless.

Those in the besieged city will see three times as many attackers as there really are.

Ijà na arís vifaic, l ijà na arís vifaic, l ijà na arís vifaic, mi mar ijà ur vifaic, mi!
You will see me again, and you will see me again, and you will see me again, yes, you must see me thus again, yes!
Hey, you can't make a good incantation work in translation.

It's good old PSYOPS. Who says I can't have modern warfare in the 8th century? I have psychological operations, terrorism, biological warfare, covert actions, trade embargoes, massacres, and assassinations (both successful and failed).

And now to bed.

Sweet dreams, my avid avocets!

--the BB

Aruh hne n'Iswealdh ann lwaithre tosdach jelaigh

Israel Evicts More Than 50 Palestinians From East Jerusalem Homes
Voice of America - Robert Berger - ‎26 minutes ago‎
Israel evicted dozens of Palestinians from their homes in Jerusalem on Sunday. The move touches on one of the core issues of the Middle East conflict.
Israel condemned over evictions BBC News

The header is the refrain of a lament from one of the latter books of my series (of which only the first version circa 1973 and a portion of the revision/expansion so far exist). The cost of the will to power is devastating in this book yet to be written.

Alas, the Isenwild lies dead in ashes.

May it not be so.
May it not be so.
May it not be so.
Shantih. Shantih. Shantih.

--the BB

Senza parole


08/01/09 :
DoD Identifies Marine Casualties (2 of 2)
Lance Cpl. Jonathan F. Stroud, 20, of Cashion, Okla...assigned to 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune...died July 30 of wounds suffered while supporting combat operations in Helmand province...

08/01/09 :
DoD Identifies Marine Casualties (1 of 2)
Lance Cpl. Gregory A. Posey, 22, of Knoxville, Tenn...assigned to 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force...died July 30 of wounds suffered while supporting combat operations in Helmand province...

08/02/09 NYTimes:
3 US Soldiers Killed in Wardak Province
Three United States soldiers...were killed on Sunday in Wardak Province. Two Canadian soldiers were also killed Saturday in Kandahar, and a French soldier died Saturday after a gun battle with guerrilla forces north of Kabul.

For those who sleep

Blues: Robert Cray - Twenty

h/t to Joe Sudbay at Americablog who wrote:
This week, Iraq and Afghanistan were all over the news. A military adviser said it's time to leave Iraq, Meanwhile, in Afghanistan, more troops died in July than in any month that was so far.

Robert Cray's "Twenty" is heartbreaking and powerful song that pays tribute to our soldiers fighting and dying in those wars.

--the BB

Only state media were allowed to attend the closed trial

Thomas Erdbrink reports at the Washington Post:
TEHRAN, Aug. 1 -- More than 100 political activists and protesters went on trial Saturday on charges of rioting and conspiring to topple the government in the turmoil surrounding Iran's presidential election, the semiofficial Fars news agency reported.

The defendants included several prominent politicians -- former members of parliament, first-generation revolutionaries and an ex-vice president -- who have been locked in a decades-long power struggle with Iran's hard-line clerics and Revolutionary Guard Corps.


Only state media were allowed to attend the closed trial, which took place days before the date of Ahmadinejad's second inauguration.
h/t to Joe Sudbay at Americablog

Let us continue to pray for the People of Iran.

--the BB

The sign says it all

What is interesting nowadays is that the citizenry at large is beginning to wake up to the reality that the wealthy and powerful really have been waving economic warfare on the rest of us all along. Hello? OK, better late than never, but is it too late? Will people pay enough attention NOW to do something about it?

buhdydharma has a post up today titled Thoughts on the Class War. Check it out. (I snaffled the photo from there.)

--thge BB

Do not let bullshit pass unchallenged

Disinformation is being spread at almost every turn - falsehoods, distortions, and misleading statements designed to get congresscritters to vote against the best interest of the People. Much is directed straight to the members of Congress - often with donations discreetly not-quite-attached - and much is aimed at the populace to cause confusion, doubt, anxiety, and get people to back off from a fully functional health care system. Why? Because that would cut into the profits of the insurance companies. And they will fight like hell to keep that from happening. Nothing is beneath them.

So arm yourself with facts and be prepared to challenge bullshit when you see or hear it.

Check out jamess' article today titled "Insurance Exec admits Michael Moore was RIGHT about Health Care."
BILL MOYERS: You were also involved in the campaign by the industry to discredit Michael Moore and his film "Sicko" in 2007. [...] So what did you think when you saw that film?

WENDELL POTTER: I thought that he hit the nail on the head with his movie. But the industry, from the moment that the industry learned that Michael Moore was taking on the health care industry, it was really concerned.

BILL MOYERS: What were they afraid of?

WENDELL POTTER: They were afraid that people would believe Michael Moore.

BILL MOYERS: Is it true? Did you think it contained a great truth?

WENDELL POTTER: Absolutely did.

BILL MOYERS: What was it?

WENDELL POTTER: That we shouldn't fear government involvement in our health care system. That there is an appropriate role for government, and it's been proven in the countries that were in that movie.

You know, we have more people who are uninsured in this country than the entire population of Canada. And that if you include the people who are underinsured, more people than in the United Kingdom. We have huge numbers of people who are also just a lay-off away from joining the ranks of the uninsured, or being purged by their insurance company.

Keep on fighting.

--the BB