io9's Katharine Trendacosta has succeeded in creative crowdsourcing again
), by asking "What's Your Favorite Science Fiction Novelty Song?"
, and she got enough suggestions to assemble a 30-song Spotify playlist
(Actually she got a couple hundred. There are more that didn't make the spotify list in the follow-up post; just scroll down** for things like The Doctor Who Time Warp, Captain Picard's Let It Snow/Make It So and the highlight of the Buffy Musical Episode [BUNNIES!]) [more inside]
It got lost in the Kanye vs. Beck
hoopla, but metal fans are fuming
that "joke band" Tenacious D took home last night's "best metal performance" Grammy for their cover of Dio's "The Last in Line.
" The comedy duo beat out such metal mainstays as Anthrax, Mastodon, Motorhead and Slipknot.
Our American Pravda.
A provocative essay on the flaws of the American media by the editor and publisher of the American Conservative, Ron Unz
allusions to conspiracy theories
condemnation of Soviet spies (and a kind word for Joe McCarthy),
criticism of the FBI,
approving quotations of Paul Krugman,
fresh questions about the moral character of John McCain and his fitness for office,
disapproving descriptions of the Obama administration as "Bush's thrid term,"
and a broadside against the selling of the Iraq war calling it the "greatest strategic disaster in United States history." [more inside]
Q: What's the connection between heroin in Glasgow and a dead goat in Turkey? A: Anthrax
Wired's gripping account of the FBI's investigation into the 2001 anthrax attacks.
The investigation into the 2001 anthrax attacks (dubbed "Amerithrax" by the FBI) is now closed. Yesterday, the Department of Justice released a 92-page summary [pdf]
of their investigation. Their conclusion -- that USAMRIID
scientist Bruce Ivins was the culprit -- was backed by an impressive amount of evidence, including microbiological detective work (p. 23 ff). But some of the investigation was downright bizarre.... [more inside]
- On the 6th Anniversary of the death of Dr. David Kelly
, a provocative film (and book)
about the 2001 Anthrax Attacks
examines Kelly's role in the hidden world of germ weapons research. Youtube parts: 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. [more inside]
"The National Counterterrorism Center
is pleased to present the 2009 edition of the Counterterrorism (CT) Calendar
. This edition... contains useful information across a wide range of terrorism-related topics: terrorist groups, wanted terrorists, and technical pages on various threat-related issues" such as recognizing the effects of an anthrax infection. "The Calendar marks dates according to the Gregorian and Islamic calendars, and contains significant dates in terrorism history, as well as dates that terrorists may believe are important when planning 'commemoration-style' attacks." Conveniently available in both online multimedia format (deep link to the timeline itself
), as well as a printable version
(63 MB PDF). [more inside]
A New York Times investigative report on the case against alleged anthrax terrorist Bruce Ivins
: "[U]nless new evidence were to surface, the enormous public investment in the case would appear to have yielded nothing more persuasive than a strong hunch, based on a pattern of damning circumstances, that Dr. Ivins was the perpetrator." [more inside]
Breaking anthrax attacks update:
A new suspect, a US goverment expert on anthrax, kills himself as he's about to be arrested. Bruce Ivins helped analyze
the killer powder sent by mail in 2001 that killed five people and freaked out the US right after 9/11. The govt paid out $5.82 million just last month to former govt scientist Steven Hatfill
for wrongly targeting him in the investigation.
People should have more protection than a necktie, their shirt or paper towel to cover their mouth, nose and eyes. They need Moist Towelettes too. [via]
The Joseph Curseen, Jr., and Thomas Morris, Jr., Processing and Distribution Center opened
in December 2003 with little fanfare. Formerly the Brentwood (D.C.) Post Office, it was renamed by House Resolution 3287
in honor of the two postal workers killed after two letters containing anthrax passed through on their way to Capitol Hill. [more inside]
Keith Olbermann receives phoney anthrax letter.
"The New York Post may have just impeded an FBI investigation into terroristic threats." Why send anthrax to the media?
(real or otherwise)
FBI is Casting a Wider Net in Anthrax Attacks
"The strain of anthrax used in the attacks has turned out to be more common than was initially believed" and wasn't weaponized, and there's now "an almost endless list of possible suspects in scores of countries around the globe." FBI microbiologist Douglas Beecher wrote an analysis [PDF]
that says, "A widely circulated misconception is that the spores were produced using additives and sophisticated engineering supposedly akin to military weapon production." More comments
on Beecher's findings from other biologists.
The U.S. Military is buying bioweapones production systems
, with a focus on Anthrax. The Sunshine Project
, a German group opposed to biological weapons development, uncovered U.S. Army contracts for equipment to produce the anthrax bacillus anthracis Sterne in 1,500 litre quantities, and other unspecified biolgical agents in 3,000 litre batches. All equipment was to be stationed at the Dugway Proving Ground in Utah. It seems unlikely that the U.S. is living up to its commitments to the Biological Weapons Convention.
As a reminder, the post 9/11 anthrax attack upon the U.S. used weponized anthrax produced in the U.S.  
, most likely at Fort Detrick. The attack is generally believed to have been committed by conservative elements in American society, partly due to the choice of targets and the existence of a simultaneous harmless attacks. Lt. Col. Dr. Philip Zack is believed to have been involved in smuggling the Anthrax out of Fort Detrick, if not in the actual attacks as well  
What do HIV, breast cancer, dental plaque, and stem cells all have in common? Why, you can wear them! as a tie
, a lovely scarf
, or even underwear
! The Infectious Awearables
collection will definitely be catching...spreading like an epidemic...infectious and charming! (via Blue's News)
The Quorum After
Ricin, anthrax, plane crashing into the Capital--there've been several serious threats to our Congresspeople in the last couple of years and, despite having a couple of bills introduced to rectify the matter, we still have no program in place to manage an emergency that deprives us of a quorum. Norman Ornstein explains (and though link is NYT, no babies required as payment). I know, I know, but it really does matter.
The Anthrax investigator.
Ed Lake, a retired computer specialist, has decided to solve the Anthrax attacks mystery
. So he has created a very comprehensive site about the facts of the case. He has a theory about who did it
. Very impressive data gathering for a single individual.
I find it hard to believe that the bio-chemical weapons specialist
, and expert Steven Hatfill
, was responsible
for the tragically amateurish Anthrax attacks, responsible for senselessly killing mainly postal employees
. Greenpeace Germany
unsurprisingly supports the 'inside job' conspiracy, and whatreallyhappened.com
decides to blame it on the Jews again
, among other things.
Hatfill: suspect or pawn
Case of the Missing Anthrax
"The 400 pages of documents, which I've obtained and which were described by The Hartford Courant earlier this year, quote a newly arrived officer named Michael Langford as saying that he found "little or no organization," "little or no accountability," "a very lax and unorganized system" and signs of covert work and cover-ups."
I'm concerned about the stock prices too, but, shouldn't this be on the evening news as well?
NYTimes reg. reqr'd
seem to think Steven Hatfill, the guy whose apartment was searched
by the FBI last week and former infectious disease researcher for the Army, is the anthrax mailer. Kristoff says Hatfill (Kristoff calls him "Mr. Z," presumably so he won’t be sued for liable) gave some friends who visited him Cipro, he has connections to a Rhodesian army who used anthrax in the late 70s and his security clearance was suspended less than a month before the mailings. Laura Rozen of The American Prospect
has news clips of him warning about bioterror attacks. (Bonus for the conspiracy theorists: The Globe and Mail
collected info on the "[s]uspicious deaths
" of eleven of the world’s leading microbiologists.) [1
Is the FBI dragging
it's feet in the anthrax investigation? It appears they have reason to do so. Dr. Barbara Rosenberg presents a compelling argument that the likely homegrown terrorist is known but revealing his identity could be embarrassing to the government.
The World Bank in Washington DC said today that some of its mail had tested positive for possible anthrax contamination. 1200 employees there will be staying home tomorrow. It's the third report of a positive test in DC this week. Hysteria, residue from before, or is it happening all over again?
Anthrax and the Agency
"Now that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has officially put the anthrax investigation on a back burner, it is time for Americans to think the unthinkable: that the FBI has never been keen to identify the perpetrator because that perpetrator may, in fact, be the U.S. Government itself. Evidence is mounting that the source of the anthrax was a top secret U.S. Army laboratory in Maryland and that the perpetrators involve high-level officials in the U.S. military and intelligence infrastructure."
Granted, there's more than a few blips on the radar screen these days, but...whatever happened to this investigation? I'm no conspiracy theorist, but the case laid out in this piece gives me pause. Any other good theories out there?
New Scientist article about the Anthrax attacks.
"After months of bungled investigation, it now looks certain that America's anthrax attacks came from within. The implications are terrifying".
We're all gonna die! We're all gonna....oh wait, maybe not.
NASA's got some "bad news for Anthrax", and we can thank better space greenhouse designs. The concept seems to be akin to a stove fan, but it's so much more. It's super-duper-pathogen-killing-fan. It's a pathogen killing machine.
You've helped crack mathematical games
, you've searched for aliens
, the cure for cancer
, cure for AIDS
and even tried to calculate pi
. What's left to do in distributed computing? How about helping the fight against anthrax
? Remember, if you don't download
the screensaver, the terrorists have won.
Anthrax Missing From Army Lab
A story of lax security, missing Anthrax and anti-Arab harrassment. Quoted in the article is a Dr. Rosenberg who issued a report
stating, "The FBI has surely known for several months that the anthrax attack was an inside job." Then why hasn’t anyone been arrested? Two reasons: "a fear that embarrassing details might become public, and a need for secrecy in order to acquire sufficient hard evidence to convict the perpetrator."
Is the Bush Administration complicit in hiding the source of the anthrax
? An interesting theory with intriguing, albeit rather weak, evidence is presented. What do you guys think?
"Eau de Antrax
does not contain anthrax."
, escaped convict and FBI Ten Most Wanted List
member Clayton Lee Waagner was caught today at a Kinko's store in Cincinnati by US Marshals. Clayton had been on the run since February.
Abortion Foe Admits to Sending Bogus Anthrax Letters.
Dear Attorney General Ashcroft. Please detain this terrorist without legal representation, and then try and execute him immediately.
In the house of anthrax.
"AMERICAN officials increasingly believe the anthrax attacks since September 11th were not carried out by people connected to al-Qaeda, but may have been the work of a lone American madman. To avert future attacks, though, perhaps they should look harder."
Mayo test detects anthrax in minutes
The Mayo Clinic says it has developed a DNA test that can identify anthrax in "less than an hour instead of days." The test was developed since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, officials announced at a press conference today.
Isn't it great what people can accomplish together when they're motivated by humane concerns?
Arrest in Trenton NJ.
Looks like the Feds may be onto something in the anthrax investigation. Makes you wonder why this rapidly slipped to the back pages on Yahoo, though...
Anthrax Appears To Be Home Grown.
Something more than sensationalist anchor people reading off tele-prompters. A low key approach to questions I think a lot of people have
"No anthrax for you!"
It's official. We're pussies. A classic "Seinfeld"
pulled from syndication
some atrocious reporting from the usually responsible UK Guardian
Just an example of bad conclusions from little information. The sensationalist title of this story, reprinted from the Observer, is, "Anthrax attacks' 'work of neo-Nazis,'" (which seems like bad grammar to boot - why the apostrophe after "attacks"?) and then it begins, "Neo-Nazi extremists within the US are behind the deadly wave of anthrax attacks against America, according to latest briefings from the security services and Justice Department."
But if you read the actual article, here's the closest thing they have to a quote or face supporting this:
'We've been zeroing in on a number of hate groups, especially one on the West Coast,' a source at the Justice Department told The Observer yesterday. 'We've certainly not discounted the possibility that they may be involved.'
Is it just me, or is this drawing a lot out of a little, and just confusing the situation?
Anthrax: the new shark attack?
In all the sensationalist reporting on the anthrax-by-mail attacks, the fact that anthrax affects more than 2,000 people world-wide annually
. Does all this coverage remind anyone else of the frenzy surrounding shark attacks this summer?
Air disinfection system
developed in the mid 90s for mold and mildew could also nullify anthrax attacks. Seems like a simple and cheap solution here today
for building air disinfection. Ahh aint technology great.
Based on handwriting
the geniuses at the United States government have figured out the letters might be from the same source. I'm sure everyone has seen these letters... Isn't that a bit "duh." If everything is figured out at this lightning fast speed we will never find these people.
This reminds me a bit of those psychologists who report very obvious things... many times I have heard on MSNBC: "According to psychologists, the nation is in a state of shock. For some it may take weeks to escape this feeling, for others months." Is that really something we couldn't figure out by ourselves?
A Sign of Our Times.
(No, not the part about the mom mailing her son's ashes to the student loan office. The part about the employees freaking out thinking it was anthrax.)
From a piece in the NYTimes today, Home Front Is Minefield for President
: "The lesson we're learning," one administration official said today, "is that you can bomb the wrong place in Afghanistan and not take much heat for it. But don't mess up at the post office."
Leave it to the White House to come away with exactly the wrong interpretation. But the facts are there, too -- most Americans are more concerned about the (relatively slight) risk of getting Anthrax than the rather significant risk that, if we screw up in Afghanistan, we might lose the current coalition against terrorism, Bin Laden, and any hope for "homeland security" for a long time to come....