Not All Iraqis Dancing in the Streets. To watch the neutered embedded reporters, you would think that every Iraqi is overjoyed to see America in his or her country. But the reality seems to be quite different: "Why are you here in this country? Are you trying to take over? Are you going to take our country forever? Are the Israelis coming next? Are you here to steal our oil? When are you going to get out?" posted by owillis at 10:50 PM PST - 35 comments
Operation Pretentious Platitude One of the awful aspects of "Operation Iraqi Freedom" is having to listen to this name used without irony.
"It all comes down to branding" ...
"Don't waste a public relations opportunity -- remember that the operation name is the first bullet in the war of images."
"Churchill ... warned specifically against using words that imply an "overconfident sentiment." He knew as well as anyone how history delights in throwing unforeseen ironies our way."
Here's a list of mostly recent real names.
But how about "Operation Rouge-wearing Caliph"?
"Operation Evangelical Fatwa"?
"Operation Expect No Mercy From Our Privet Bush"?
"Operation Overpriced Cannon"? "Operation Irate Economy"?
"Operation International-law-ignoring Manticore"?.
Try for yourself.
(Here's how it's done). posted by lathrop at 5:50 PM PST - 34 comments
Orbiter - A Free Space Flight Simulator Starving for a high realism space simulator ever since Microsoft's Space Simulator was discontinued? Look no further than Orbiter, a free realistic space simulator written and maintained by Dr. Martin Schweiger. How realistic? You might want to start off by consulting NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Basics Of Space Flight to get you grounded so to speak. This is a free, non-commercial simulator that uses accurate math and orbital physics (more or less) to try to model space flight. However hard it may appear, after orbiting Earth with the high-res (8192x4096) mod-pack installed, or sitting on the launch pad with the seamless OrbiterSound 2.1b sound environment installed, you will be well rewarded for reading the manual and participating in the dance of the heavens. (Even if all you want to do is fly around the solar system!) posted by Tystnaden at 1:48 PM PST - 10 comments
Embedded? Or In Bed With The Military Spin Doctors? Quite apart from the significant sexual and conspiratorial overtones of the word and concept themselves (when applied to people), there's something more than a little disquieting about the participant observation aspect of the large-scale practice of embedded reporting in the current invasion of Iraq - as opposed to the journalistic tradition of direct observation. Altogether too gung-ho - and inevitably so - I'd say. Me no like. And don't really trust myself to be able to epistemologically introduce, in my understanding of what I see, the (already minimal) distance that I'd previously taken for granted in standard reportage. What can be done to offset this bias? [Here is a very recent, detailed Department of Defense guide to what a media embed consists of [pdf format] and the release journalists must sign in order to be embedded.] posted by MiguelCardoso at 12:46 PM PST - 23 comments
Something nice. In a refreshingly simple and visually appealing presentation, "Places" explores the synergy between artists and the locations that inspire them. From a virtual landscape created from the surface of an agate, to a 1787 map of Mecca included in the Dala'il al-Khayrat ("Guides to Good Things"), to an 1885 photograph of a single moment captured in the reflection of a gazing ball, these eight fascinating examples seem to suggest that places are nothing so much as what our own observation reveals of them at any given time. posted by taz at 11:28 AM PST - 4 comments
The Ngadjonji. The history and culture of a Queensland rainforest tribe. "Theirs was a culture with no chiefs or kings. If the senior men and women of each clan had implied status, it was because of their wisdom and the highest attributes a (Ngadjonji) could possess was a keen memory
and great skill in hunting, gathering and bushcraft ... " Of related interest :- the Aboriginal Memorial, in Canberra, created by 43 artists of the Ramingining community in Arnhem Land. posted by plep at 11:16 AM PST - 4 comments
NaturArt - fed up with man's ugliness to man? Escape to this Budapest gallery's oasis of nature photography. Don't be off-put by the Hungarian text, hit start and wait for the main menu, then go to portfolios to access the works of about 30 photographers, Tagok for mini galleries, or diaporama for a lovely film. Flash & sound alert, but very well worth it if you have the time to explore. posted by madamjujujive at 9:07 AM PST - 12 comments
As one, the students shouted, "Strength through discipline!" - "The Third Wave", A Dangerous Experiment. More disturbing even than the "Milgram Experiment": "When Ron Jones started teaching at Cubberley High School in the fall of 1968, it was considered the most innovative of Palo Alto's high schools. ....His methods were experimental and his goal was to bring social studies to life.....Jones turned his class into an efficient youth organization, which he called the Third Wave. Some students were informers, and some were told they couldn't go certain places on campus. He insisted on rigid posture and that questions be answered formally and quickly....."It was strange how quickly the students took to a uniform code of behavior. I began to wonder just how far they cold be pushed," Jones wrote....But soon the experiment began spinning out of control.... five days into the experiment, Jones announced, "We can bring (the nation) a new sense of order, community, pride, and action. Everything rests on you and your willingness to take a stand." As one, the students shouted, "Strength through discipline!" ". Ron Jones wrote about it in No substitute for Madness, which is out of print in English but required reading in German public schools. As Umberto Eco notes in "Eternal Fascism", this is a timeless tale of human nature. posted by troutfishing at 8:28 AM PST - 40 comments
Wakey wakey Mr Blair There's been a lot of media comment recently concerning Tony Blair's visible signs of exhaustion. This piece illustrates just how quickly he needs to wake up to what's going on if he's ever to sleep soundly again.
Clare Short should show him the way and save her credibility at the same time posted by skellum at 5:09 AM PST - 13 comments