Saturday, April 16, 2011
No, my friends, I have not turned New Age on you all. Now I have been branded as “objectionable” by the blogosphere, I have a reputation to maintain. But, ever since, as a young boy, I read a story by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle called “When The World Screamed” (one of the Professor Challenger stories) I have always been fascinated by the idea of the planet as a living, integrated, and possibly sentient entity.
“In his 2010 book, Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Plant, environmental scholar and activist Bill McKibben writes of a planet so devastated by global warming that it’s no longer recognizable as the Earth we once inhabited. This is a planet, he predicts, of “melting poles and dying forests and a heaving, corrosive sea, raked by winds, strafed by storms, scorched by heat.” Altered as it is from the world in which human civilization was born and thrived, it needs a new name -- so he gave it that extra “a” in “Eaarth.” The Eaarth that McKibben describes is a victim, a casualty of humankind’s unrestrained consumption of resources and its heedless emissions of climate-altering greenhouse gases. True, this Eaarth will cause pain and suffering to humans as sea levels rise and croplands wither, but as he portrays it, it is essentially a victim of human rapaciousness. With all due respect to McKibben’s vision, let me offer another perspective on his (and our) Eaarth: as a powerful actor in its own right and as an avenger, rather than simply victim. It’s not enough to think of Eaarth as an impotent casualty of humanity’s predations. It is also a complex organic system with many potent defenses against alien intervention -- defenses it is already wielding to devastating effect when it comes to human societies. And keep this in mind: we are only at the beginning of this process. To grasp our present situation, however, it’s necessary to distinguish between naturally recurring planetary disturbances and the planetary responses to human intervention. Both need a fresh look, so let’s start with what Earth has always been capable of before we turn to the responses of Eaarth, the avenger.” (Click here for the rest)
Click here to read the Conan Doyle story
Click here for Jim
The secret word is Sister
Posted by Mick at 4/16/2011 09:45:00 AM
A hundred grand for what look like stripper shoes? Didn’t a diamond necklace trigger the French Revolution and give the guillotine to the Jacobins?
“Billed as “the ultimate stiletto,” this pair of shoes is made of gold or platinum (your choice) and encrusted with 2,200 handset diamonds, over 30 karats total. It also features “the exquisite Stamen Fluted Heal” (sic). It also comes with extra soles, so it will never wear out. The price? £100,000. That’s $163,500 US. Got that in a size 6E?”
And talking of stripper shoes…
Posted by Mick at 4/16/2011 09:29:00 AM
Friday, April 15, 2011
And yes, Finn wants one.
“Cats love anti gravity. I bet you didn’t know that. This device was invented by Swedish immigrant Per Karlsson in the early 50s, and a small series was produced in Wellington for a while. But people didn’t go for it as much as Karlsson had hoped; maybe because they didn’t fancy having the cat hover around too much. In case you’re wondering what the little cap with the “antlers” is the cat is wearing on its head, it’s the mind reader. The cat steers the machine with her thoughts, because, how else would she.” (Click here for more)
Click here for Lou
And while you’re clicking, click this. (It’s worth the effort)
The secret word is Angora
Posted by Mick at 4/15/2011 07:42:00 AM
But did you really expect it would be?
“There are few people who can claim direct knowledge of the ocean floor, at least before the invention of the spill-cam, last year's strangely compulsive live feed of the oil billowing out of BP's blown-out well in the Gulf of Mexico. But for Samantha Joye it was familiar terrain. The intersection of oil, gas and marine life in the Mississippi Canyon has preoccupied the University of Georgia scientist for years. So one year after an explosion on the Deepwater Horizon offshore drilling rig, about 40 miles off the coast of Louisiana, killed 11 men and disgorged more than 4m barrels of crude, Joye could be forgiven for denying the official version of the BP oil disaster that life is returning to normal in the Gulf. More concerning for Samantha Joye, however, is the destruction that occurred -- and is occurring -- deep below the surface. The view from her submarine is different, and her attachment is almost personal. On her descent to a location 10 miles from BP's well in December, Joye landed on an ocean floor coated with dark brown muck about 4cm deep. Thick ropes of slime draped across coral like cobwebs in a haunted house. The few creatures that remained alive, such as the crabs, were too listless to flee. "Most of the time when you go at them with a submarine, they just run," she says. "They weren't running, they were just sitting there, dazed and stupefied. They certainly weren't behaving as normal." Her conclusion? "I think it is not beyond the imagination that 50% of the oil is still floating around out there." (Click here for more)
Posted by Mick at 4/15/2011 07:31:00 AM
Thursday, April 14, 2011
I’m not taking sides in this. I mean, would the FBI deceive us?
“It's unclear whether this memo is a hoax, but it has just appeared on the FBI's "vault" website, devoted to once-classified documents that have become public. The brief memo contains information from an Air Force informant about "flying saucers." In the memo, FBI agent Guy Hottel records what an "investigator for the Air Forces" (whose name is blacked out) told him about what is popularly called "the Roswell incident." Hottel writes: Three so-called flying saucers had been recovered in New Mexico . . . they were described as being circular in shape with raised centers, approximately 50 feet in diameter . . . Each one was occupied by three bodies of human shape but only 3 feet tall, dressed in a metallic cloth of a very fine texture. Each body was bandaged in a manner similar to the blackout suits used by speed flyers and test pilots. The informant speculates that the saucers were found in New Mexico because the US government had a "high powered radar set up" there, and "it is believed that the radar interferes with the controlling mechanism of the saucers." (Click here for more and links)
Click here for Child Of The Moon
The secret initials are EBE
Posted by Mick at 4/14/2011 06:37:00 AM
I’m not taking sides in this either. Maureen Dowd seems to have a hair up her ass about Dylan in China. Was it worth going along with the authorities to infiltrate rock & roll into China? And where was Ms Dowd when Bob was working for Victoria’s Secret?
“Bob Dylan may have done the impossible: broken creative new ground in selling out. The idea that the raspy troubadour of ’60s freedom anthems would go to a dictatorship and not sing those anthems is a whole new kind of sellout — even worse than Beyoncé, Mariah and Usher collecting millions to croon to Qaddafi’s family, or Elton John raking in a fortune to serenade gay-bashers at Rush Limbaugh’s fourth wedding. Before Dylan was allowed to have his first concert in China on Wednesday at the Worker’s Gymnasium in Beijing, he ignored his own warning in “Subterranean Homesick Blues” — “Better stay away from those that carry around a fire hose” — and let the government pre-approve his set. Iconic songs of revolution like “The Times They Are a-Changin,’ ” and “Blowin’ in the Wind” wouldn’t have been an appropriate soundtrack for the 2,000 Chinese apparatchiks in the audience taking a relaxing break from repression. Spooked by the surge of democracy sweeping the Middle East, China is conducting the harshest crackdown on artists, lawyers, writers and dissidents in a decade. It is censoring (or “harmonizing,” as it euphemizes) the Internet and dispatching the secret police to arrest willy-nilly, including Ai Weiwei, the famous artist and architect of the Bird’s Nest, Beijing’s Olympic stadium. Dylan said nothing about Weiwei’s detention, didn’t offer a reprise of “Hurricane,” his song about “the man the authorities came to blame for something that he never done.” He sang his censored set, took his pile of Communist cash and left." (Click here for the rest)
Click here for a late posted but excellent commentary by our old pal Charles Shaar Murray
Posted by Mick at 4/14/2011 06:32:00 AM
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
When I first opened up Doc40 today I was surprised to be confronted by a Blogger offensive content warning and was locked out of my account and unable to post. Seemingly someone had complained. About what I don’t know. Maybe it’s the politics, maybe it’s Doc’s Paperback Classics, or Brigitte Bardot and Jane Birkin. I’ve noticed in these situations one does not get to face one’s accuser. In fact it’s all a bit cyber-Kafka. I haven’t seen the warning since so maybe it was just a glitch, and, of course, we shall carry on doing just what we’ve been doing.
Posted by Mick at 4/13/2011 06:15:00 AM
Back in the day this would have triggered a riot on Market Street.
“San Francisco's Entertainment Commission has proposed that all bars, clubs, and venues should be required to photograph and collect ID from everyone who comes in for a drink or a show. The photos and personal information would be retained so that police could get a list of every person who was in the club on any given night. Leaving aside the (obvious) fourth amendment issues inherent in governments collecting massive databases of presumed-innocent people's lawful activities and movements, this is also a security nightmare, in which thousands of club staff and their friends would have access to personal information that would be of great interest to stalkers, creeps and identity thieves.” (Click here for more)
But click here for San Francisco to Paris in two and a half minutes (with aurora). Courtesy of Wendy
The secret word is Invaded
Posted by Mick at 4/13/2011 06:11:00 AM
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
I kinda go along with this. If I was an alien I don’t think I’d want humans to know I existed.
“Has ET evolved to be discreet? An evolutionary tendency for inconspicuous aliens would solve a nagging paradox – and also suggest that we Earthlings should think twice before advertising our own existence. As physicist Enrico Fermi argued in 1950, unless the evolution of life is unique to Earth, there must be many intelligent species out there. So why have they neither phoned home nor been detected by us? "It's a real paradox," says Adrian Kent of the Perimeter Institute in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. In order to explain the Fermi paradox, Kent turns to natural selection – and suggests that it may favour quiet aliens. He argues that it's plausible that there is a competition for resources on a cosmic scale, driving an evolutionary process between alien species on different planets. Advanced species, for example, might want to exploit other planets for their own purposes. If so, the universe would be a violent place, and evolutionary selection may favour the inconspicuous – those who lay low on purpose, or who simply lack the skill or ambition to venture forth or advertise their existence.” (Click here for more)
Click here for The Rolling Stones being shamelessly psychedelic.
The secret word is Sssssh
Posted by Mick at 4/12/2011 10:19:00 AM
As the Fukushima disaster is elevated to level 7, the same as Chernobyl, our good friend Yukiko writes from Tokyo.
“On a more general level, things are turning pretty surrealistic. Just like a daily weather report, we now have a daily "radiation report" which informs us the level of radiation concentration in the air measured in each prefecture near Fukushima. (For Tokyo, the measurement point is right here in Shinjuku.) After all, what are we expected to do when we are told, "It won't harm your health immediately" or, more confusingly, "It won't harm your health unless you continue to eat it everyday for one year" - should we keep one day a year not to eat it? Many people are beginning to fear this will all go Chernobyl, but almost nobody knows exactly what happened in Chernobyl.
Not a few Japanese must have decided to go get drunk when we heard that TEPCO began to release "less contaminated water" (100 times legal limit) into the sea to make storage space for the "more contaminated water" which is a supposed cause of the radioactive iodine 7.5 MILLION times legal limit detected in the sea water near one of the troubled reactors.
The spokesman of NISA is now widely known to be wearing a wig, about which a part of the media is noisy questioning if we can expect the truth from someone that can't be true even about his baldness.
In the wake of 3.11 and Fukushima Daiichi, the rich Chinese tourists have disappeared from the town and a large number of foreigners - Russian fashion models, U.S./EU businessmen, etc. fled from Japan. Hawkwind and the Sonics cancelled their Japanese tour in April, but two dudes from Canvey Island, Lew Lewis and Wilko Johnson, played Tokyo with their bands, in March and April respectively. And Ms. Jane Birkin suddenly flew in from Paris last week to hold a charity concert in Tokyo for the disaster site. At the press conference she said, "My children and friends tried to stop me, saying it's very dangerous in Japan now, but I couldn't stay in France doing nothing.”
Posted by Mick at 4/12/2011 10:05:00 AM
Last week we posted this photo. We claimed it was Elizabeth Taylor, but we may have been wrong. World of Wonder tells us…
“This photo, which is purported to be a 24-year-old Elizabeth Taylor in her only nude shot showed up in every media outlet on the globe, is now being challenged as being a photo of someone else entirely. According to sources close to the image, the lady in question is an obscure American actress and model named Lee Evans. That's the name that appears in the caption under the photo in Classic Nude Photography: Techniques and Images, Peter and Alice Gowland''s 2001 book of pin-ups. The book claims the photo was taken in 1940 – when Taylor would have been eight. Alice Gowland says, "It's an absolute falsehood that it is Elizabeth Taylor." The photo agency that released the picture has suspended its distribution while there is a possible challenge to its veracity."
Click here for high Liz drama
Posted by Mick at 4/12/2011 09:55:00 AM
“Saudi Arabia’s proposed Kingdom Tower will rise to 5,280 feet. That’s a full mile. If completed, this building in Jeddah will cost $30 billion to build and will contain apartments, hotel rooms, and offices in its 12 million cubic feet of space. The above graphic compares the structure to the Petronis Tower (center) in Malaysia and the Empire State Building (left) in the US. Currently, the tallest building in the world is the Burj Khalifa, which is 2,700 feet tall.”
Posted by Mick at 4/12/2011 09:47:00 AM
Monday, April 11, 2011
No mistake. These bastards are the enemy.
"The idea that Charles and David Koch are liberal bêtes noires is not new. Over the past year, the elderly brothers, head of the vast Koch Industries business empire, have occupied top spot in the demonology of the left. Across a range of activities – from the birth of the Tea Party to undermining unions in Wisconsin, to opposing efforts to curb global warming – they have been believed by many Democrats to be forever lurking behind the headlines. Now, a brilliant piece of investigative reporting by the Washington-based watchdog Centre for Public Integrity has detailed the Kochs' vast political and lobbying operations. It makes sobering and deeply disturbing reading. After all, it is one thing to believe that out there somewhere the devil exists, but reading the CPI report feels a little like being given his phone number. The sums of money spent in furthering Koch (pronounced like the drink coke, no matter how tempting it is to rhyme it with rock) interests and power are staggering. But what is most disturbing is how rapidly they are growing. In 2004, the CPI found, the Kochs spent a "mere" $857,000 on lobbying. In 2008, that had grown to $20m dollars. Over the next two years, they then spent a further $20.5m. The causes are varied but self-centred around the vital interests of Koch Industries such as oil, energy, chemicals and financial products. Employing no less than 30 lobbyists in Washington, Koch Industries has lobbied to change more than 100 pieces of federal legislation. They included trying to loosen regulations on potentially poisonous substances like dioxins, benzene and asbestos." (Click here for more)
Click here for Mountain and Ozzy
The secret words are Unfettered and Greed
Posted by Mick at 4/11/2011 09:23:00 AM
No, the world didn’t die screaming. We just put the band back together. And more and more pieces of live video surface of the Portobello All Stars in relentless action. Here’s a very fine piece of film by Ann Yonan of an interesting performance of our song "Aztec Calendar" at the Boss Goodman Testimonial at The Inn On The Green back in the winter. And, for greater comprehension, here are the lyrics.
Lit by the chrome-flare of falling warriors
Carrion scavengers scrabble for white hot insignia
You thought the biblical end times were a motherfucker?
The Aztec calendar just ran out
Witchfire as the hotel burns
Ain't no point in saving your luggage
Ain't no point in even saving your soul
Walk the dog, baby
The Aztec calendar just ran out
Dice roll redundant under their own power
The shooter ain't coming out ever again
The pit boss goes down on his own gun
Cops know fear
The Aztec calendar just ran out
Passion flowers in smoldering rags
Have no pointers to salvation
Custom car cannibals put it park
The death knell is number one
On the Billboard hot hundred
The Aztec calendar just ran out
How long do you think a single species
Can go round and round in the revolving door
Without someone screaming "this shit must stop"?
The Aztec calendar just ran out
Click here for the psychedelic old gangsters
Posted by Mick at 4/11/2011 09:14:00 AM