Thursday, June 22, 2006
Wednesday, June 21, 2006
After the grueling march (Jenn and I are both very out of shape I might add) and a jaunt on the Statin Island Ferry, we headed back to her place and collapsed exhausted onto her bed. Here's a pic to commemorate that moment. I think this is actually one of my very fav pics of us now...
Friday, June 16, 2006
Think the many and wide financial and political interests of these companies and their predominantly conservative owners don't negatively effect the content of the information and media which is then made accessible to the American public? Think again my friends - these corporations hire the people that make the decisions about what news to investigate, what themes to present in entertainment, and what information abouts its consumers to share with an intrusive government.
You can see this vast web of conglomerated media control on this chart:
There is also a useful chart with statistics here:
You can find more articles and info on this topic here:
Wednesday, June 14, 2006
Following the parade was a festival featuring a small stage with music and plenty of drag queens. I'm not really complaining, but from just watching the shows, you'd swear this event was Wigstock instead of Pride. But the crowd was a good mixture of LGBs, straights and even a couple Ts, young and old. The headliner act was the entertaining (and good-natured since the sound system kept shorting out)
Thursday, June 08, 2006
There is only one thing that arouses animals more than pleasure, and that is pain. Under torture you are as if under the dominion of those grasses that produce visions. Everything you have heard told, everything you have read returns to your mind, as if you were being transported, not toward heaven, but toward hell. Under torture you say not only what the inquisitor wants, but also what you imagine might please him, because a bond (this, truly, diabolical) is established between you and him.
-Umberto Eco, The Name of the Rose (1980)
Also check out this blog "Against the War on Terror" - it's time we dispelled the idea that we can ever win this never-ending "War on Terror." It's like having a field full of dandelions and trying to eradicate them by taking a weed-whacker to a couple tufts of them. Until we get at the roots of terror (and our own nation's actions contributing to it) and it's appeal to disgruntled youth, it will only get worse.
Here's a snippet of their mission statement:
The war on terror is more than just another public policy. It is an attempt to make security the highest goal of American life. Our leaders have reduced politics to questions of mere survival, in which even the smallest risks are viewed as overriding threats to national existence. We at Against the War on Terror aim to challenge this view and the apparent need to eliminate fear itself....We reject the very premise of the war on terror....
Saturday, June 03, 2006
This upside down world too low key to hear.
Human as evol-instrument played to perfection,
as army ant for queen freedom's forgotten cause.
That concert-embrace of feeling and rhythm and listener;
the closest we'll come to Creation.
Songs born to procreate
Thursday, June 01, 2006
And then she was hit with a fucking German word: weltschmerz. That in itself is fine I guess (although I thought it was english language?!). But as soon as that word was announced, you could hear, where there hadn't been before in any previous rounds, a steady and fast series of clicks just off-camera. As the camera panned out a little you could see the battery of cameramen and photographers snapping away with machine-gun abandon, smelling, or perhaps even willing, that peculiarly cruel moment of not knowing; inevitably followed by the elevator-easy-volume-buzz of failure. I could see the look of defeat seep into her eyes as the barrage of clicks continued to grow. She could tell that all these strangers, only a couple feet from her, expected her to lose, maybe even wanted her to lose.
Was it American Pride taken to a cruel and totally unbelievable level? Was it a latent desire to have a "more American" looking kid win? Afterall, I think 5 out the last 7 competitions were won by Indian-Americans. Maybe not consciously, but I don't think there is any doubt that those photographers and the idiots that set-up, commercialized and whored out these brilliant and still innocent young people engaging in, at its core, a competitive learning exercise, effected the outcome. I believe both these girls are around 14 years old (8th grade?) and here they were having possibly their most vulnerable and brave moments and feelings broadcast upclose on national television to millions of perfect strangers all in the name of profit.
That just felt wrong to me, although I must admit I could not turn away once I stumbled on it at such a opportunely consumer-friendly time. I feel sort of guilty for having peeked in on this. This kind of pro-educational activity, involving bright young kids and serious competition should not be nationally televised. Let these kids win the prestigious awards and make mistakes and feel the ups and downs of competition, but not in front of such a wide and casual audience. But then maybe I'm just a rain-on-their-parade prude afterall... :-)
"Truth always rests with the minority, and the minority is always stronger than the majority, because the minority is generally formed by those who really have an opinion, while the strength of a majority is illusory, formed by the gangs who have no opinion—and who, therefore, in the next instant (when it is evident that the minority is the stronger) assume its opinion ... while Truth again reverts to a new minority."