November 28, 2004

Integration vs Assimilation, the Gasterbeiter

Theo Van Gogh's murder early this month puts forth into the spotlight the Dutch and German authorities' struggle to curb extreme Muslim fundamental cell activity. Germans are waking to the existence of Islamic alcoves which pervaded the German land and society. About 80% of Muslims in Germany are of Turkish descent, who were allowed into the country in 1970's as "guest workers" or, Gasterbeiter...
For the past 30 years or so, the new immigrants who remained in Germany led quiet lives within the larger host community integrating into it to various degrees. However, a new trend has recently been observed among the German Muslims and it is that of increased fundamentalism and self imposed isolation and seclusion. Many Muslims choose to huddle within their own neighborhoods and communities in response to the prolonged discrimination within the German society. Even though, the state, sensitive to it's racist history is very tolerant, allows Muslim schools and even recognizes polygamy (if marriages took place in an outside Muslim country), in practice many Muslims feel that they are treated as second class citizens. In an article in Deutsche Welle the Green Party's Volker Beck said:
    "Social exclusion and disintegration make young Muslims vulnerable to radical ideologies and hatred," Beck said. "The way out of this dilemma is not to brand them as outlaws, but rather to let them participate in German social life."
As Tuba Ancar a 21 year old from Berlin states in NPR's story on Europe, Islam's New Front Line: Germany there is a difference between Assimilation and Integration. The Muslim community has a growing need to assert themselves in Western society.
    “The message is ‘we’re here, we’re proud, we’re going to live our religion and not going to hide ourselves anymore’,” said Riem Spielhaus, an Islamic studies lecturer at Berlin’s Humboldt University.
An integral part of a free and Democratic society is Tolerance and Freedom of Expression. That is where, a progressive leader like Jacque Chirac disappoints greatly by endorsing the ban on wearing the hijab, the kippa and a cross in public schools. The EU politicians have it all backwards. It is proper to practice Any spiritual beliefs in private and express those as they pertain to the realm of a private persona by wearing any type of paraphernalia an individual chooses. It is wrong, to allow religion classes in public secular schools and making concessions catering to any religious demands within that school system, such as exempting muslim girls from co-ed physical education classes. It unfairly elevates the status of few mainstream religions, encourages preferential treatment and stands in the way of integration and equality. This may sound like a hardline approach, but if religious beliefs are strictly confined to private life yet it's symbols are tolerantly allowed as means of self expression, the Secularism of the Republic which is a key issue to Jacque Chirac, is safely preserved while the burden of reconciling cultural differences falls back into the lap of the immigrants, reminding them to respect the laws and way of life of their host country while taking care to supplement their cultural and religious heritage, if they chose so, on their own time and through their own means.


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November 25, 2004

Watch, listen, observe

Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us Alamo Square Park, San Francisco.
Hidden messages, subliminal content, are all around us. Some see "truth" expressed through mathematics appear in tree tops by scrutinizing the fractal arrangement of branches and leaves, such as in the film Pi . Others plot contrived schemes to find hidden messages in the text of the Bible . Neale Walshes' readers receive answers to their queries directly from God, if they know how to listen..

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The human quest for meaning, truth and certainty is very entertaining.
I am a tough sceptic, I don't believe what I can't see and what you can't spell.

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November 24, 2004

Consistency, please.

Aliens must have voted voted on Nov. 2nd.
Results of a Times/CBS News poll were published today in a New York Times article. It finds:
    - Nearly two-thirds of all respondents - including 51 percent of Republicans - said it was more important to reduce deficits than to cut taxes.
    - Even as two-thirds of respondents said they expected Mr. Bush to appoint judges who would vote to outlaw abortion, a majority continue to say they want the practice to remain either legal as it is now.
    - In the poll, more than 6 in 10 of the respondents said people with higher incomes should pay a greater proportion of their income in taxes; 3 in 10 said all income groups should pay the same proportion.
    - 51 percent said that Mr. Bush was unlikely to "make sure Social Security benefits are there for people like me."...

All that was known On and Before election day. Bush's second term agenda carries plans to reshape Social Security, rewrite the tax code, cut taxes and appoint conservative judges to the bench who would work to outlaw abortion and alter the constitution to explicitly ban gay marriage.
The article says:"There is continuing disapproval of Mr. Bush's handling of the war in Iraq, with a plurality now saying it was a mistake to invade in the first place." And the consensus is: "that Bush won despite the fact that Americans disapproved of his handling of the economy, foreign affairs and the war in Iraq."
If the poll is correct, and this one claims an error margin of 3 %, then:
Who voted for Bush, and Why?
    "For all the attention paid to the effort Mr. Bush made to increase his support from religious supporters, 31 percent of respondents said they thought that evangelical Christians had too much influence over the administration. By contrast, 66 percent said they thought big business had too much influence over the administration."
Here the expression "By contrast" should be eliminated, I believe the two options are on one flop side of the Administration's agenda - that would add to a total of 97% of wrong doing.
And this statement is just absurd:
    Across the board, the poll suggested that the outcome of the election reflected a determination by Americans that they trusted Mr. Bush more to protect them against future terrorist attacks - and that they liked him more than Mr. Kerry - rather than any kind of broad affirmation of his policies.

So a Republican President is elected by people who disagree with his policies but like him nevertheless, in a climate where
    "Americans now have a better opinion of the Democratic Party than of the Republican Party: 54 percent said they had a favorable view of Democrats, compared with 39 percent with an unfavorable view. By contrast, 49 percent have a favorable view of Republicans, compared with 46 percent holding an unfavorable one."
and there are no protests and solidarity marches?! All of the sudden Alien abductions and brainwash seem not all that improbable.

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November 21, 2004

life is built for swapping

A fascinating article is found in the technology section of MSNBC, via Slashdot. It casually speaks of transgenic creations:
    In Nevada, there are sheep whose livers and hearts are largely human. In California, mice peer from their cages with human brain cells firing inside their skulls. These are not outcasts from "The Island of Dr. Moreau," the 1896 novel by H.G. Wells in which a rogue doctor develops creatures that are part animal and part human. They are real creations of real scientists, stretching the boundaries of stem cell research.

This controversial topic would outrage many people, I know. Obviously, the moral dilemmas tied to the subject are due to the human egocentric point of view. The mythical idea of sanctity of human life. The prevalent notion is that human life is worth more than that of other mammals and animals. Therefore it would be unfit for a human embryo to inspissate in a mouse's womb...
I wish this bias was fully transparent to all. All Evolution is a continuum and question of right or wrong is mostly only that of a degree. Why is it that human life is considered superior? If we consumed human flesh and ran our lab experiments on humans the question of inferring intelligence onto a "humanzee" would be irrelevant. Similarly the main argument against GE crops is that the genetic mutations introduced by humans would spread to other crops and potentially cause an ecological disaster. Transposon's capacity for cross-species hopping is not unique to GE modified specimens. In fact, it commonly occurs in nature. GE genes do not behave differently, they can't. Scientists don't have the capacity to synthesize new genes from scratch, they can only mix and match, transplant genes across species, nothing which Mother Nature hasn't been busy doing since the beginning of Evolution. All Mothers and Twins are Chimeras according to the article because they carry on their siblings/children's DNA forever post partum. Let's be frank and do away with the shameful double standard, let's market human flesh for consumption or stop eating animal tissue all together. Let's discontinue any GE research only if we can stop the same occurrences in nature. The misguided notion that somehow a natural mutation is less harmful than one induced by men is preposterous. That would imply consciousness and benevolence on natures part, obviously tying it in with Creationist rhetoric. Humans should not carelessly mix and match a hodge podge of genetic puzzles, if anything there is an immense degree of responsibility which comes with any venture attempting to change natural environment or predicament, be it Urbanization, Natural Resource Exploitation, or Medical Research.
If all the arguments above don't convince you of nature's preference for mixing it up, consider a phenomenon of human behavior which chauvinistically is known as "wife swapping", or more politically correct "swinging". Some men busy themselves figuring out mathematical probabilities of being paired up with their own wife at a Swing Fest. Some only joke about it .
Btw..., I Know I am going to hell.



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November 18, 2004

murky waters

If you take Line 38 in San Francisco at Geary and Laguna everyday, you are probably an avid Israel and Judaism supporter. You have to be. You believe it is a free democracy where women and minorities can vote, where the Isreali Palestinian issue is only a political conflict unlike the holocaust. It is the promised land endorsed by JFK and Ronald Reagan, diverse, caring, proud, progressive.
Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.usLine 38, the PR(opaganda) stop.
Ever since I can remember living in the neighborhood, this bus stop has been displaying nothing but a Blue Star PR material. Although I have personal ties to Israel and lived there for 6 years, I can't express how unfair and damaging this aggressive advertising is. Israel and the conflict surrounding it is much more complex than a dozen of slogans.
This one boasts: "Where in the middle east Arab women can vote? - In Israel." Elections are indeed the topic in Israel and Palestine, nowadays. January 9th 2005 is set to be an election day for the new PA leadership... Speculations run wild as to the future of the Israeli Palestinian dispute. Yassir Arafat, branded by both US and Israel as an unfit negotiation partner, is dead and seemingly the road is clear for a new leadership to emerge. Who ends up being the new elect will shed some light on the true intentions of the majority of Palestinians. There are fears that without the unifying influence of the iconic figure of Arafat, the separate factions, from moderates to extremists will be drawn into internal conflict and infighting. Clearly however, if the Palestinian people are allowed to vote freely - their choice on January 9th will indicate the degree of their pacifist intentions. First and only Palestinian election were held in 1996, Arafat held on to his post for additional unmandated 4 years. His character and motives have been called into question on many occasions, as has been that of Ariel Sharon, the Israeli PM. The hate and mistrust pervade. By now, after decades of conflict it is impossible to pick out the single threads of events and trace a single line of guilt and responsibility. Among the opinions out there I choose to quote two which I think are insightful and prejudice free:
    "Most Palestinians, myself included, have mixed feelings about Arafat. Although he has failed as a statesman to build the democratic institution we all hoped he would when he returned following Oslo, he will always be credited for putting the Palestinian cause firmly on the international agenda. I hope there will be free elections in the occupied territories in the coming few months and a leadership is elected that is representative of all Palestinians."
    Sami Joulani,  London ,  United Kingdom.

    "Arafat did not make the old Middle East. His death won't make a new one. He became Israel's partner because Yitzhak Rabin created the circumstances for this through generosity of spirit; an understanding of what a Palestinian leader needed to make peace and an iron resolve to ensure Israel's security through peace. Peace for the region died when Rabin was murdered. It will not come again until Israel's leaders can once again grasp the legacy made vacant by Amir's hand."
    Michael Feinstein,  Johannesburg,  South Africa.


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November 17, 2004

prodigal daughter's return to EU

On Synecdoche Juan posted Land of the Free (EU). Quoting a Salon article via Kos, he has high hopes for what is in the words of Andrew O'Hehir a:
    "...transnational superstate of 25 nations, 455 million people and an $11 trillion economy. This is, of course, the European Union,"


And granted with an aspiring constitution like this:
    "The new EU constitution, currently being considered by the member states...It should also serve as an inspiration to progressives around the world. It bars capital punishment in all 25 nations and defines such things as universal healthcare, child care, paid annual leave, parental leave, housing for the poor, and equal treatment for gays and lesbians as fundamental human rights..., as Rifkin says, this document all by itself makes the European Union the world leader in the human rights debate. It is the first governing document that aspires to universality, "with rights and responsibilities that encompass the totality of human existence on Earth."
the EU will become the new land of dream and opportunity that America once was to it's immigrants. Juan says:
    " People escaped from countries now in the EU, like Poland in the 70's and 80's, looking for freedom. It would be ironic, proper and beautiful if the sons and daughters of those now went back, looking for the same things."
I have to admit that with most recent unabashed promise of cooperation between the CIA and the Administartion and the intended privatization of Social Security the future of America seems to be on a downspin track towards a totalitarian state supporting it's upper crust at the expense of the working class. The movement towards freedom spurted out in Poland in 1980-ies out of a very similar soil. The economical conditions and the limitations of civil liberties preceding the strikes, opposition and unrest in Poland, were infinitely worse than what only seems to be budding here in the US. There was wide spread censorship, attempts at price surges of up to 30% while salaries of workers remained steady for decades. It came to food rationing and military state. America still has way to go before running itself into the ground. It will be another generation or so before the US naturalized Polish émigrés would be either called to action, or seek refuge back in the Old Country, away from the oppression of the US regime. Ironically their plight would be from one extreme of a socialist system by name, through a self defeating capitalism, to safety and happiness within a mature mixture of social capitalism.

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November 16, 2004

I, the cybernaut sailor

I resisted Blogger and Friendster while in hype, dismissed the popularity value, sullied the inherent self promotion factor.
Because the two phenomena focus on outward expression and communication with others, I understood "the others and their response" to be the central focal point and the purpose of engagement in Blogger and Friendster activity...

Having had some experience, my Bayesian Inference would have to be seriously re-adjusted.
Both are forums for self expression, "I" is the topic, the public nature is secondary, a response whether in form of site hits or new friendship invitations is trivial. I do obsess about the hit statistics, length of visits, origin and ISP. Work my social network to acquire new friends, write messages to strangers, search demographics and interests, compare friends in common, the number of friends, admire size and vitality of an extensive Friendster network. But, my drive is expansively Apollonian, I am very proud to say. It is about acquisition, numbers and status.
As I revel in my cyber persona, muse about being a disembodied sentinel, watching and reading, absorbing and ingesting news and information online, I reflect about my stat tracking and the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle. How much the information I gather about my visitors affects my posts? I also occasionally follow the entry pages back to the visitor's homes. Read their posts. Do they track? Do they revisit my Blog? Would the reality of my blogging experience be different if I didn't track?
Since the subject borders on esoteric why not check out your past life experience? Only make sure to read the disclaimer, next.

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November 14, 2004

Interior Portrait

    All my goodbyes are said. Many separations
    slowly shaped me since my infancy.
    But I come back again and I begin again;
    this fresh return releases my attention.

    What's left for me is to replenish it,
    and my joy, forever unrepentant
    for having loved the things resembling
    these absences that make us act.

R.M. Rilke

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November 13, 2004

Found Findory

Instead of browsing multiple news sites and sifting through numerous blog feeds waiting for that exciting moment of interest "engage!", today I discovered www.findory.com.
It is a side by side News and Blog site which changes feeds on every refresh. It is like a package of mixed flavor jelly beans, every hand dip produces a surprise... It allows to constantly discover and make yours, a variety of blogs which otherwise may have been lost among all other web publications. It is smart. The feed-interest correlation increases with usage. So today I remembered why I thought The Incredibles were only incredible artistically and why the story line discomforted my feminist bone, I wondered about Dick's dick both from www.AndrewSullivan.com. I learned how to survive EA, where I am due to start working in a week (St. Expeditus help me!) and understood how Religion and viruses have same modus operandi.
Oh and the following was apparently posted on NY's Craig's List:
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via Andrew Sullivan

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November 12, 2004

Island of Anglesey

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In anticipation of my travel to London this Xmas and New Years, I picked up a volume from my collection of Works of Charles Dickens. Admittedly it should not be my first choice... , the title is: A Child's History of England. Dickens was not a historian, his knowledge of the subject was apparently shallow and incomplete, his statements subjective and dated. For example he speaks of Julius Caesar's retreat: "Julius Caesar was very glad to grant peace easily and to go away again with his remaining ships and men. He had expected to find pearls in Britain, and he may have found a few from anything I know; but at all events he found delicious oysters, and I am sure he found tough Britons..." Or: Because Boadicea, a British queen, the widow of the king of Norfolk and Suffolk people, resisted plundering of her property by the Romans who were settled in England, she was scourged by order of Catus a Roman officer; and her two daughters were shamefully insulted in her presence, and her husband's relations were made slaves. To avenge this injury, the Britons rose, with all their might and rage." My favorite though:" Above all it was in the Roman time and by means of Roman ships that the Christian religion was first brought into Britain, and it's people first taught the great lesson that, to be good in the sight of God, they must love their neighbours as themselves, and do unto others as they would be done by. The Druids declared that it would be very wicked to believe in any such thing, and cursed all the people who did believe it, very heartily". It is because of these heavy handed generalisations and omissions of detail that this version of the history of England reads more like a fable or a children's story. I smile when I read and with conscious tactile pleasure I flip the hand cut pages of this volume printed 104 years ago.

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November 11, 2004

Male Extreme

Roman Polanski knows himself. In his 1962 film Knife in the Water, he dives deep into the male psyche. The setup: a married couple, the glory of whose romance is long gone substituted by petty bickering and mutual boredom, come across a hitchhiker eager to test his limits. He stops cars by standing in the middle of the road and refusing to budge.
The husband and the hitchhiker are of the same ilk, barely 20 years apart. They enter a dynamic of power play and intense competition... , challenging each other while the brief acquaintance extends over a 24 hr sailing trip. The female role is most diminutive while the fascination of the two men borders on the homo erotic. Constant handling of a knife raises the tension which is only occasionally interrupted by carefree moments of laughter, play and fooling around. The young man's sexual interest in the wife becomes soon apparent as personal space is scarce, bathing suits wet and change of clothes often required. The husband's suspicion is aroused as he wakes from sleep and discovers that both are gone from the cabin. Even though the two are found engaged in fixing a sail before the morning departure, the husband's temper is spoilt. The hitchhiker is thrown outboard in a fight. In the same continuos spirit of challenge and competition the young man hides behind a buoy while the couple keeps diving to find him, setting up the mood for a scene where a possible murder took place. Further confrontation and bipartisan loathing is intensified between the man and his wife. The husband swims away to the shore, while she remains behind and some time later hauls the boat back to the dock. Back in the car, she questions her husband whether he intends to turn himself in, to the police. He emotionally accepts the reality of having killed a man and takes the route towards a police station, the wife confesses that the young man in fact hasn't drowned and that they had a sexual encounter before sailing in. The car is stopped at a crossroad. The husband must decide which to believe - that he has killed a man, or that the youngster has deceived him and his wife has betrayed him. The car remains at the intersection as the film ends - beautifully.

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Era Passed

These images from the Vancouver Sun, the Telegraph Calcutta and the Telegraph News UK respectively, captured my attention.

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Most stereotypical, they are ghostly echoes from Russia's Soviet past... Russia as a country, is in depths of not only an absolute restructuring of it's economical system, but also in the midst of a major shift in it's population mentality. The Communist indoctrination of the decades past, has to cede way to a new generation's thinking and Russia faces enormous social challenges. They are well enumerated in an editorial by Yevgeny Gontmakher D.Sc. (Econ.) in The Moscow News. As the country tries to break with it's failed past, the Russian Duma is considering to abolish the commemoration of the Bolshevik Revolution as a national holiday.
Last sunday, November 7th in Moscow a city of about 8 million, only about 10 000 people marched in what may have been the last ever national revolution parade. It used to be a very festive affair filled with flowers, children and song, attracting millions. Across the country protest marches were held against the proposition to replace the November 7th with a holiday commemorating a November 4th, 1612 date when Moscow was freed from Polish occupation.
I only wonder whether erasing a date from a calendar, removing it from the population's consciousness will alleviate in anyway the painful lessons of the past? It is somewhat reminiscent of the Cultural Revolution in China in attempts to obliterate any memory of it's Imperial past, or Hitler's book burning ceremonies. The past, whether in a form of cultural legacy or as a commemorative day, should be kept as a bench mark of our progress. To remove any such events from our human consciousness and start fresh, we'd have to nuke the planet and wait billions of years for the particle to coalesce again. There are no "returns", there are no "clean breaks", only a forward process muddied with our mistakes and washed clean by our momentary flashes of insight, in an alternating cycle.

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November 09, 2004

Eve, the Source of All Evil

A few days ago I finally shelved a book which in many respects was an undercurrent in my personal life for the past 2 years.
The title: "The Mating Mind" by Geoffrey Miller. The glossary section at the end of the book defines terms such as "assortative mating", "fitness indicator", "extended phenotype", it also lists - "death". Death is defined as " A misfortune that precludes further courtship or reproduction". The meaning of life, according to Sexual Selection Theory promoted by this book, can be inferred from that definition...
It is a tremendous leap to understand how the biological reproductive differences between genders, expressed through social behavior, altered by evolution over a couple of million years, have amounted to our modern society where we all share in the pool of "millions of acts of courtship, in which we are neither the producer nor the intended receiver". Humans as species, have been pre-selecting creativity, fantasy and flare as exciting courtship models, conditioning our minds to produce most amazing works of art and fiction. Yet these are the same qualities which make us fallible to "forms of ideological display: (such as) armchair speculation, entertaining narratives, comforting ideas and memorable anecdotes", making it easy to deviate from logical scientific reasoning and analysis. I will quote this witty and insightful paragraph, which sums up the point:
"Imagine some young hominids huddling around a Pleistocene campfire, enjoying their newly evolved language ability. Two males get into an argument about the nature of the world, and start holding forth displaying their ideologies. The hominid named Carl proposes:
'We are mortal, fallible primates who survive on this fickle savanna only because we cluster in these jealousy-ridden groups. Everywhere we have ever traveled is just a tiny, random corner of a vast continent on an unimaginably huge sphere spinning in a vacuum. The sphere has traveled billions and billions of times around a flaming ball of gas, which will eventually blow up to incinerate our empty, fossilized skulls. I have discovered several compelling lines of evidence in support of these hypotheses...'. The hominid named Candide interrupts:
'No, I believe we are immortal spirits gifted with these beautiful bodies because the great god Wug chose us as his favorite creatures. Wug blessed us with this fertile paradise that provides just enough challenges to keep things interesting. Behind the moon, mystic nightingales sing our praises, some of us more than others. Above the azure dome of the sky the smiling sun warms our hearts. After we grow old and enjoy the babbling of our grandchildren, Wug will lift us from these bodies to join our friends to eat roasted gazelle and dance eternally. I know these things because Wug picked me to receive this special wisdom in a dream last night.' "
Needles to say, Eve and Candide got together and went on to produce many children and great, great, great grand children. And so we are today, still believing in the ancient bed time story made up by our great grand father - Candide.
Thank You, Juan.

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November 07, 2004

The Last of the Pet Accessories

Borgs have been busy sewing up CPUs into clothing for a few years now. The divergent portable technology is expected to come together and we'll be able to tell which device or matter require our immediate attention based on the frequency and intensity of a vibrating signal against our bodies... Be it cel phones, GPS, Palm style organizers, digital phones or music players, computers or any other devise which your personal survival may depend on. While a smart jacket which illuminates by night and keeps the wearer warm developed at Cornell University is a great idea, a woman's magazine (which name I don't bother to remember) popularized a breathalyzer sensor capable to detect a myriad of health problems such as asthma, stomach ulcers, potentially heart disease, diabetes, lung cancer and schizophrenia - into a women's accessory ring. Discretely wafted in front of an unsuspecting mate, this smart device can cut through the chase of the nonsense of dating, the drama of emotional entanglement, bypassing coitus, straight into a test tube and procreation. In the mean time I took my Pet Purse to a neighborhood coffee shop. It isn't smart and it doesn't communicate.
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Pet Purse (by Hutchi Mama) - left, center frame.

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November 04, 2004

Hear No Evil

Denial. I pride myself in being able to look straight ahead into the gaping mouth of stark reality when it faces me. Romanticism and Idealism evaporate as I get into crisis management mode. Yet, I angrily shoved aside any discourse doubting John Kerry's presidential seat this past tuesday... By midday the conservative election blogs trumpeted around an analysis of the Democrat's chance, or the slimness of it for beating president Bush. Mark Mellman a senior pollster and a Kerry advisor described the election as an "uphill fight" for the Democrats.
In retrospect I admire this man's wisdom. Inspite of his personal involvement in the issue, he didn't lose sight of reality and hard historical facts. I am humbled by his willingness to take on a challenge, fully devoting himself to work towards the fruition of a cause, knowing all along that history and odds aren't on his side. I am even more blown away by his courage to write this article on Nov. 1st only a day ahead of the election D-day, coldly assessing the battle, yet hoping for the best.

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November 03, 2004

Democratic Settlements in Middle West of America

Frustrated Americans of Democratic orientation woe in disappointment of the Election outcome.
Escapism runs rampant as many daydream about new countries to make their home at.
Canada is one friendly choice, but Costa Rica and Australia are also being mentioned. It has been said that if Democrats want to win, they need to adopt some of the right wing aggressive tactics.
There may be some truth to that... The Israeli right wing for example, makes no apologies for forcefully expanding the borders of the Israeli territory through West Bank Jewish settlements. Here is how it happens. First an outpost is established bearing a flag and a water-tank. The outpost is being guarded by an armed Israeli, soon a habitable shack is put together after all, the guards have to sleep somewhere. It isn't too long before a few others spring up. One guard becomes three, becomes ten. Women and children arrive, more pregnancies, births and more children. A few years later an entire small Jewish settlement town is bustling with life all established under the radar of official authorities who tend to turn a blind eye to the works of the settlers anyway. Voila, an instant de facto outpost of the right wing religious right.
This is a lesson to Democrats in America - move, but move away to the American Mid West. Spread your ideology of welfare and healthcare for all, a fairer tax system, respect for the environment and fellow nations around the globe. Get out and get into the hotbed of conservative America, wean them of xenophobia, bring in diversity and color, be an example of true all inclusive tolerance in the spirit of "live, and let live". I'll match your move with mine.

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The World Has Ended

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Remember the big hoopla at the turn of the millennium? Fears of Alien Attacks, Armageddon and Judgment Day, the earth exploding at it's core, all humanity instantly pulverized by radiation, only because a lead digit of an arbitrary calendar system has finally flipped it's face? I was impervious to all that nonsense.
Yesterday however... , on a sunny November afternoon in San Francisco, overlooking a street bathed in hazy light, in anticipation of the Electoral outcome, I conceived the notion of the World's End and fear settled in.
The World Has Ended last night, because inspite of the Herculean effort, widespread mobilization of the Democratic campaign, intense grass roots activity, hundreds of thousands of volunteers, John Kerry's obvious lead on issues in all three debates, a surge in voter turnout expected to benefit the challenger to the president - the Republican party and the Conservative Pragmatism (I don't think Conservatives are capable of Ideology) sweep the country.
The Democratic Party hasn't conceded victory to the Republicans yet, but at this point it seems it is only a matter of time.
Imagine "Four More Wars", deception of the people, continuos and growing assault on civil liberties in the name of "safety",
thwarting of progressive initiative (Woman's right to chose, Gay marriages, Environmental protection).
This victory will license president Bush to follow his misguided path with even more momentum and vigor. The next 4 years sadly will bring more foreign policy malpractice, the abyss between the US and the rest of the world community will only grow larger and darker, and the American parents will have to keep feeding Mars with their young. All that while "God" is in the White House - because I have no doubt that president Bush will allude to a divine intervention in his inaugural address.
G.W. Bush is blind to the fact that his self righteous crusade is sanctioned by the ignorant Demos and not by a benevolent Deus. The Democratic system in America turns out to be a self feeding loop of government using the media to manipulate the public to reelect same manipulative government to manipulate the people...

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November 02, 2004

Petition in support of Indymedia

The wonderful project that is Indymedia needs your help.

"On 7 October, 2004, hard drives from two Indymedia servers were seized from the London office of a US-owned web hosting company, Rackspace, at the request of the US Justice Department, apparently in collaboration with Italian and Swiss authorities." - indymedia.org ...

More on the seizure as well as Indymedia in general, can be found at wikipedia.org

Please sign the petition denouncing "the seizure of the Indymedia hard drives as an unacceptable attack on press freedom, free speech and privacy". The petition can be signed online until November 7th 2004 in English, French, German, Spanish, Dutch and Russian.

Progress on the matter can be tracked directly at IMC: FBI and other legalbreaking news.

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November 01, 2004

Keirsy Temperament Theory and Elections

Advisor Team is a website attempting to sort and match people to people, people to jobs and most recently predict election outcomes based on the Keirsy Temperament Theory.
Quote:
"We found that every time an Artisan ran for President, regardless of party affiliation, the Artisan won."

Maybe it is a misinterpretation... What I see from this table, is that it is the first time in recent history that an Idealist John Kerry is measured against an Artisan George W. Bush. So as it may be true that Artisan presidential candidates tend to win over Guardians and Rationals, there does not seem to be a precedent of an Artisan winning over an Idealist. The site claims to have examined data from the last 100 years, yet results of presidential elections dating prior to 1960 are not published.

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Kerry's personal page is prefaced by his quote, by the same token the following personal statement should appear at the head of Bush's profile: "When I was young and irresponsible, I was young and irresponsible."
Artisan or not, temperament and personality, which were extensively discussed during early stages of the presidential race under the code name "like-ability" - can't possibly be the decisive factor in light of the notorious intellectual deficiency of the current president.

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