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kevvyd is not dead...

He just smells funny.

Hot on the heels of my return from vacation I am heading out to sea for something like a month. I am currently sitting in downtown St. John's NL awaiting the arrival of my vessel. Dan and Flash will hopefully pick up the slack while I'm away. Take care...

I'll try to pick up the pace a bit - I haven't been contributing much, since I've been so busy, but I'll do my best to take up the challenge!
Godspeed, Kevvyd!

Evolution Major Vanishes From Approved Federal List - New York Times

Here's a topic to get your juices flowing. Is this omission intentional or accidental? Either way, it certainly will hinder evolutionary biology students.

The US Supreme court - male supremacy?

An interesting, but not surprising, story in the NYT today.

Women Suddenly Scarce Among Justices’ Clerks - New York Times

Salon previews 9/11 TV specials

9/11 hits TV | Salon Arts & Entertainment

Afghanistan flowers

Opium Harvest at Record Level in Afghanistan - New York Times

Can't imagine you haven't heard this yet, but I'm a Rickie Lee Jones fan, and I want to publicize her involvement. Started out as a campaign theme song for Dem/Ind. Larry Kissell vs Rep. Robin Hayes (NC), and it is still that, but I'm sure it will be picked up by many other campaigns. Rickie Lee is on vocals, with Ken Mosher and Tom Maxwell of the Squirrel Nut Zippers.

Crooks and Liars HYHEMix.mp3

The evolution of the song is documented here...


The original video is the work of Mike McIntee, in support of Dem. Coleen Rowley vs Rep. John Kline.

YouTube - Have You Had Enough?

Free Slush Agreement

Daily Kos: Canadian Taxpayers Paying into $450M Whitehouse Slush Fund?

The softwood lumber deal guarantees the US $1 Billion, with $450 Million going to a presidential discretionary fund. Which initiatives will POTUS find meritorious? Ask Elliot Feldman.(Starts at 7:55, after a story on Darfur)
Listen to Part 2 of As It Happens for Monday 4 September

And Peter Julian, the NDP member for Burnaby-New Minister, claims that the Canadian taxpayer may foot the bill for $250 Million of that.
Listen to Part 2 of As It Happens for Tuesday 5 September

Prince The Younger
Now why didn't I think of this?
A Child's Machiavelli

black box ballots
Ars Technica has an article on the unreliability of electronic voting here. Based on a study by

Celebrity has its privileges

Author JK Rowling insisted on carrying the manuscript for the final Harry Potter book onboard with her on a flight from New York, rather than put it in her check-in luggage.
BBC NEWS reports

God Said

Originally posted two weeks after 9/11, still irreverent today.

God Angrily Clarifies 'Don't Kill' Rule | The Onion - America's Finest News Source

Is God an intellectual?

Only the Pope knows what his intentions were. However, even when read in context,
Zenit News Agency - The World Seen From Rome
I can see Muslims taking offense at the quote from the discussion “by the erudite Byzantine emperor Manuel II Paleologus and an educated Persian on the subject of Christianity and Islam, and the truth of both.” Only an academic could think otherwise.

“[Manuel II] turns to his interlocutor somewhat brusquely with the central question on the relationship between religion and violence in general, in these words: 'Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached.'”

Taken out of context, Manuel II is calling Mohammed “evil and inhuman”. Taken in context, he is saying that Mohammed has contributed nothing worthwhile to the debate on the relationship between religion and violence.

The speech is interesting. It discusses the nature of God, and whether God is wholly rational and asks followers to believe because they are convinced by reason, or whether God is transcendent, and beyond the understanding of ordinary mortals.

Pope Benedict finds common ground for Islam and Christianity in the modern world: “The world's profoundly religious cultures see this exclusion of the divine from the universality of reason as an attack on their most profound convictions.” Whether intellectual discourse is the way to build bridges between cultures currently dominated by the willful avoidance of context by its leaders is something the Pope should think deeply on.

Well another 4 Canadians killed today near Kandahar, not to discount 19 Afghani civilians, many children, and countless injured. This has become so routine, (and will continue to be routine) that it barely seems newsworthy anymore.

But wait, thanks to FOX, there is something worth discussing. Fox News has PC'd the term 'Suicide Bomber'- "Homicide Bomber Kills 4..." I guess 'Suicide' is too sympathetic for the good folks at FOX.

To Terry H's comment on the term "Homicide bomber." That is not a new term. It became popular with the Israeli government to describe Palestinian bombers, and was picked up by White House spokesman Arri Fleischer during the first term of the Bush administration. I honestly can't tell you if it is still a term that is in use in Israel, or if Tony Snow uses it in the White House press room when he faces reporters. It always struck me as a loaded term contrived to put a certain spin on a very heated story, and the fact that Fox news has started to use it doesn't surprise me at all.

War! What Is It Good For? Absolute Insanity!

A post for The Nation by Dave Lindorff warns that the US navy is mobilizing to the Persian Gulf for late October, about 2 weeks before the congressional midterm elections. My knee-jerk reaction is - the Bush administration thinks it can come up with a diplomatic agreement with Iran in the next six weeks. Going to war with Iran is not an option for any sane person, a diplomatic agreement is eminently sensible. I don't think the Bush administration is insane, just illegal, immoral and fattening. How can they possibly win November's elections? Do something unbelievable but sensible.

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