March 25, 2011
Draft Tommy Lee Jones for Senate. Texas’ conservative voters aren’t about to send just any Democrat to the Senate in 2012. Hell, it’s been seventeen years since a Democrat has won any statewide race here. That’s quite a record and one we’d like to see broken. To do that, whoever the Democratic nominee is in 2012 better bring something awfully special to the race. Tommy Lee Jones is the only Democrat (or potential Democrat) who does. His name ID, near-universal popularity, fundraising ability, residence in and love for this state, his success as a cattle rancher, Spanish fluency, his image as a western tough guy and his impressive academic credentials would instantly make him the frontrunner, regardless of who the Republicans nominate.
A half-month hunger strike by Venezuelan students has ended. More than 150 students participated in the protests, some sewing their own mouths shut. [more inside]
Tsunehisa Kimura (1928-2008) was a Japanese artist best known for his photomontage art. There doesn't seem to be much about him in online in English, beyond reiterations of the same three images that BLDG BLOG copied from the 1979 book Visual Scandals, and a few short pages that are related to an interview on Australian radio back in 2002. Yet his imagery has caught the eye of various musical groups over the years, including Midnight Oil, Paul Schütze, and most recently, Cut/Copy join the fanclub, with their cover for Zonoscope. [more inside]
"Many Wikipedia articles are tagged with geographic coordinates. Many have references to historic events. Cross referencing these two subsets and plotting them year on year adds up to a dynamic visualization of Wikipedia's view of world history." Via curiosity counts.
The music industry Loudness War is over. Research into actual sales rankings, Radio Impact, Listener ratings and Hearing loss, all show better results for music with a higher dynamic range.
Earlier this month, thirteen record labels tried to claim that Limewire was liable for between $400 Billion and $75 Trillion in damages. (For some perspective, the world's GDP in 2011 is expected to be a mere ~$65 billion.) Judge Kimba Wood called the assertion 'absurd' in a 14 page opinion. (pdf) [more inside]
"I called Sam and asked him if he wanted to come to dinner but he said he had softball practice and I said that was a damned shame and hung up. When I got to Sun City Bea and Rob were at were at the bar, behind tattooed women and men with guitars. They were sitting in the shade and their beers were half empty. We drank beer and ate pho but Rob was restless and did not talk very much..." Ernest Hemingway, Yelper. Fill free to riff up and add your best Imitation Hemingway below. Here is a guide and a sample
A while ago, the west Swedish city of Borås proclaimed itself city of sculptures. And indeed you find all sorts of petrified things around the city: some neighbor on the main square; a sad rabbit in the snow; an exclamation point; some freezing kids; and a lazy student. Some of them have stories attached. [more inside]
The Wozard of Iz "is a psycho-electronic re-working of "The Wizard of Oz" that sounds like the soundtrack to the greatest LSD/freak-out/moog/synth/electronic musical that never was. This oddity is a hysterical and typical leftist/hippie commentary on the socioeconomic human condition of the average American in 1968, and uses the analogy of Dorothy taking a "trip" from Kansas for a brighter and better world where one can really be "free." With music by electronic music/moog pioneer Mort Garson: Prologue - Leave the Driving to Us :: Upset Trip - Never Follow Yellow-Green Road :: Thing a Ling - In Man - Man with the Word :: They're Off to Find the Wozard - Blue Poppy :: I've Been Over the Rainbow :: High on Big Sur :: You can listen/download Mort's other moog masterpieces, including Black Mass/Lucifer, Music for Sensuous Lovers, and Plantasia here.
In 2009, there were 423,773 children in foster care in the U.S., one of those children is "Jacket," who at age 20 months in December 2009 was placed into foster care with her foster mother Rebecca. Rebecca, single and in her early 30s, had already fostered a few young children and started blogging about it. [more inside]
With the loss of Elizabeth Taylor perhaps it is time to check in on those performers from the golden age of film who are still with us. [more inside]
The BBC looks at time zones - how they are worked out, why they cause so many arguments, and how they affect us all. (via)
The Government of Canada has fallen after a 156-145 contempt motion passed in Parliament. The contempt motion came after a Parliamentary committee found (PDF link) that the government failed to provide adequate information on the costs of crime legislation. Stephen Harper will go to the Governor-General on Saturday to request an election.
G.E.’s Strategies Let It Avoid Taxes Altogether. 'General Electric, the nation’s largest corporation, had a very good year in 2010. The company reported worldwide profits of $14.2 billion, and said $5.1 billion of the total came from its operations in the United States. Its American tax bill? None. In fact, G.E. claimed a tax benefit of $3.2 billion.' [more inside]
A 1961 fashion shoot from Disneyland which was featured in Midwest Magazine, a supplemental newspaper insert in the Chicago Sun-Times.
Could the three established domains of life - eukaryotes, bacteria and archaea - be joined by a fourth?
Within the realm of criminal justice policy, drug courts have received growing attention and widespread adoption in the United States as a solution to cycles of addiction and incarceration. Their effectiveness has again been questioned, however, in recent reports released by the Justice Policy Institute and the Drug Policy Alliance: Addicted to Courts: How a Growing Dependent on Drug Courts Impacts People and Communities and Drug Courts Are Not the Answer. The National Association of Drug Court Professionals issued a lengthy initial response, pointing to past research touting the success of the drug court model. [more inside]
Earlier this week, nearly 30 years since the release of their first album, Duran Duran played a concert which was streamed live online, directed by David Lynch. [more inside]
Meet Barrett Brown, the heroin-addicted former journalist who's the self-proclaimed face of Anonymous. [previously]
Remember when you got out of college and had no idea what to do with your life? Did you ever consider becoming a paranormal investigator? Well Ben Jordan did. His adventures have taken him to Florida, California, Scotland, England, Japan, Greece, and Italy, where he has encountered various paranormal phenomenon. Fortunately, Ben was created using AGS so you can tag along on his adventures in preparation for the final epsiode.
Since they were first discovered just a few years ago Mandelbulbs (a remapping of the 2D Mandelbrot set into 3D space) have grown in diversity, becoming more exotic, ornate, and animated. They’ve even inspired their own fanbase and usergroups. [more inside]
100 years ago today, fire swept through the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, killing 146 garment workers trapped inside. The tragedy spurred New York State to enact progressive labor reforms and was the motivation for the creation of the American Society of Safety Engineers. Although subsequent labor laws and regulations protect factory workers in the United States, the problem has moved overseas.
In preparedness circles, EDC means Everyday Carry, being items one keep on or near one's person at all times, to help with both planned and unforeseen events during the day. A lot of opinions about what should be in an EDC kit exist, but the minimum usually recommended seems to be a cell phone, light source and small folding knife. The EDC blog shows pictures and lists of submitters' EDC kit. [more inside]
Cruise Missiles: The Million-Dollar Weapon (SLHP) In the opening days of the assault on Libya, the United States and the United Kingdom launched a barrage of at least 161 Tomahawk cruise missiles to flatten Moammar Gadhafi's air defenses and pave the way for coalition aircraft. In fiscal terms, at a time when Congress is fighting over every dollar, the cruise missile show of military might was an expenditure of nearly a quarter of a billion dollars. Each missile cost $1.41 million, close to three times the cost listed on the Navy's website.
A week ago, University of Wisconsin History Professor Bill Cronon wrote a blog post about the organization he claimed was driving much of the legislation in Wisconsin: ALEC. Shortly after that, he wrote an op ed for the New York Times about the legislation. Now, the Wisconsin GOP have sent a FOIA request to the University requesting all emails that Cronon may have sent containing the terms "Republican, Scott Walker, recall, collective bargaining, AFSCME, WEAC, rally, union ..." and others. Cronon responds, calling it an "Attack [on] academic freedom". (via TPM)
Interested in CAD but find AutoCAD too expensive? Try Draftsight, a free CAD package from the makers of Solidworks. [more inside]
Criggo is a blog that posts amusing newspaper bloopers and oddities - bad headlines, poorly chosen pictures, strange advertisements, etc. The blog only has the past month's worth of posts, but it's archived in its entirety here. [more inside]
Either the Best or Worst AIDS Awareness Video you'll ever see features "Smutley", a silent-era-style animated cat having sex with everything in sight, to a soundtrack of Joan Fucking Jett's "Bad Reputation". Kinda obviously NSFW although lacking any cartoon genitalia. And where's the message? Wait for the end. From the French non-profit organization AIDES, which has been even more NSFW in the past, like a year ago with an animation which was, well, all genitals. Coming next: a site about "a better way to talk condoms" at BlahBlahBlahBlah.org. Oh, those French! (via Adrants)