Monthly Archives: June 2006

Congress Considering Adding MySpace to Data Retention Requiments

Again, What about the children! and The terrorists will win! are invoked:

In those meetings, Justice Department representatives went beyond the argument that data retention was necessary to protect children–and claimed it would aid in terrorism investigations as well. During Wednesday’s hearing, politicians also claimed that social-networking sites were not doing enough to verify that their users who claimed to be a certain age were telling the truth. (Recent news reports have said that sex predators are using MySpace and similar sites to meet up with teens.)

(via Slashdot)

Tuesday Morneeen

The power meter on the laptop is a bit wonky. It says I have only 5% left when it had been charging all night while I continued backing my data offsite. It is taking days since I’m fitting 40GB through an FTP connection. But I’ll feel better once it is completed.

Ron and I had a good time at the parade. We sat atop one of those street sign flowerpots on Cornelia (I doubt they are called flowerpots: those big huge mega-cauldrons that have flowers in them and then a steel lattice leading up to a metal platform?). I was worried the police would tell us to get down but when the Cook County Sheriff waved at us as he strode by I guess he had other things on his mind.

There is nothing more All-American than a pride parade. It really does show off a cross-section of the country. Of course George Takei was cuter than cute, waving to the crowd and flashing us the ‘Live long and prosper.’ Vulcan salute.

The morning had started with rain and I thought maybe Brian’s old adage that God never let’s it rain on a pride parade would be broken – but the rain cleared in time for the promenade. I was glad because I could see the muscleboys getting antsy as all of their careful dieting would have been dashed if they couldn’t have their shirts off on the floats (before the rain cleared I heard one growling ‘RAR! Gorl, just gimme a baguette!’).

Going to have a few colleagues look at book proposal #3 while my agent is away on vacation. Gotta figure out what #4 would be about. I figure I’ll keep writing proposals until they sell – then I’ll probably have them all due at the same time. But that’s what ghost writers are for right?

Went to the dermatologist yesterday. He’s giving me something for my foot itchies. Of course this will only bring teasing from Ron a la the Seinfeld episode where Jerry dates the girl that has fungicide (Jerry: ‘What would she have that she needs fungicide?’ Kramer: ‘FUNGUS.’). Of course, when I mentioned this to the doc he thought I was referencing the episode where Elaine is dating the dermatologist (Dermatologist: ‘That’s why I’m a doctor!’ Elaine: ‘Well… dermatologist…’). I do think that if I were to go into medicine I would do dermatology because it seems like you never have any emergencies, half the time you’re throwing acne meds at teens, the other half your beating your head against the wall trying to keep white people from tanning. Or a radiologist. Come in, pick up the films, mark them up, and leave.

Anyway all my moles are safety-assured and there’s nothing to worry about. I was hoping to get the mole in my left armpit removed because I feel like every time I do a lat pulldown it peeks at me in the mirror and says, ‘Buon giorno!’

I need to finish reading David’s newest script. I’m hoping to be a candidate to direct it. I’d love to get my hands on the Handbag folks – they have such a rousing camp sensibility. I’d like to fuse it with my usual creative intensity. And I think Dave may have a more corrosive sense of humor than I do. I’ll never forget the last production of Rudolph the Red-Hosed Reindeer they did. It was just after the Bush re-election. It was a mean, mean holiday show. But I loved it.

Armed Madhouse: Who’s Afraid of Osama Wolf?, China Floats, Bush Sinks, The Scheme to Steal ‘08,No Child’s Behind Left, and Other Dispatches from the Front Lines of the Class War by Greg Palast (Mindmap)

Mindmap of Greg Palast book Armed Madhouse

Must read.
You know Greg Palast as the ex-pat journalist that reports for the BBC and reported to the rest of the world how the 2000 election was FUBARed while no one in the US did a damned thing. He’s back.

Armed Madhouse is a complete tour of the greedy, selfish assholes that run our country – and the world – and their plans for the next few years.

Mindmapped for ya. Enjoy.

Mindmap in PNG format (1 MB).

Dan Rather Wishes

Does anybody else harbor a secret fantasy of Bill Moyers, Dan Rather and Ted Koppel all getting together and doing a total news media takedown with blistering documentaries and reportage?

HOWTO: Design a Civil War

Another facsinating comment on Metafilter details why Iraq is failing – it was designed to slide into civil war. Iraq as a country is designed to fail.

[T]he British carefully used their monopoly over cartography to ensure that these newly independent entities were cut up into chunks that would perpetuate ethnic strife and provide a ready pool of minority groups bidding for British support to their power with offers of enhancing British influence over the nations affairs.

and

In this case, the “exit strategy” is clear. Permanent bases rooted near strategic reserves, like oil fields, can be erected. The region can be allowed to dissolve into civil war, allowing the U.S. the opportunity to remove itself from general view and withdraw to said bases, where they can use the ongoing conflict to justify continued prescence in the region

Or as recipe:

  • 3 parts ethnic groups that hate eachother
  • Multiple decades of colonial rule
  • Country borders drawn to ensure internal conflict
  • Imperial oversight to guarantee conflicts perpetuate need for imperial rule
  • Drainage of natural energy resources under guide of ‘stabilization’
  • 2 parts complete lack of consideration for centuries of civilization and history

HOWTO: Tell AT&T To Fuck Off

From Metafilter:

On the eve of its hearing on charges that it assisted in the government’s illegal spying on millions of Americans, AT&T, the largest phone company in the United States, has changed its privacy policy to clearly establish its ownership of its customers’ personal account information.

Because your records aren’t yours. They can do whatever they want with them. Including giving them to the NSA. Electronic Frontier Foundation is trying to keep the suit from being dismissed on the usual ‘well if we tell you how we spy on you then the terrorists have won’ line of crap.
No where did I put my tinfoil.

UK: 1 Surveilliance Camera for Every 14 Citizens

Coming soon to a nation near you:

It’s not a silver bullet. Take the example of the Brixton bomber [David Copeland, who planted three bombs in London in 1999]. The police gathered all the CCTV footage from all the cameras in Brixton, but it took 50 detectives over 20 days to plough through all the tapes. As it turned out, forensic evidence from the bag he was carrying proved crucial.

Ron’s Takedown

As the weather gets warmer, intolerance seems to settle in like a humid mist. Ron and some friends were walking on Briar and someone woman passed them and said

Fucking faggots.

Ron laid in to her and told her that she’s in the wrong neighborhood to be making those kinds of remarks and told her go to hell in so many words. It’s enough to make you want to slash tires.
I think part of it to is as the less continental of the Cubs fans drive through on their way to Wrigleyville they aren’t used to seeing actual men and women holding hands with the same-sex. I’m sure this might accelerate with the parade this weekend and then the Gay Games next month.

Here’s how curmudgeonly I am getting:

FOX local news did a report on The Pleasure Chest, the best sex-toy store in the city moving into a neighborhood on the North Side (they used to be at Broadway and Briar) and they had some uptight yuppie bitch complaining about the right of The Pleasure Chest to exist in her neighoborhood. The report didn’t state that the store will not have any window displays and the fact that the merchants don’t let anybody under 18 in the store. They even blurred out the Pleasure Chest logo which is completely un-necessary. I was pissed. The Pleasure Chest is an example of a classy store that serves the entire neighborhood with sex-positive and safe-sex attitudes. They interviewed the owner of the store who said that in all other neighborhoods (like in their LA and NYC locations) that the price of real estate has actually gone up. The blatant What about the children!? shock value pissed me off so I actually looked up Fox’s phone number and called them and tol them they completely misrepresented the store.