Friday, May 26, 2006
Thursday, May 25, 2006
Friday, May 19, 2006
200 Campbell Soup Cans
Malanga: But what is the truth about automation?Warhol: You don't have to think a lot.Malanga: Would you like to replace human effort?Warhol: Yes.Malanga: Why?Warhol: Because human effort is too hard.Malanga: What will you do with all this leisure time created for you by automation?Warhol: Sit back and relax.Malanga: Will you devote yourself to life-enhancing hobbies?Warhol: No.Malanga: What does human judgment mean to you?Warhol: Human judgment doesn't mean anything to me. Human judgment cannot exist in the world of automation. "Problems" must he "solved." Without judgment there can be no problems.Malanga: Are you patient with little solutions and try to get as many as you can so they'll add up to something?Warhol: What I try to do is to avoid solving problems. Problems are too hard and too many. I don't think accumulating solutions really adds up to something. They only create more problems that must be solved.Malanga: Dissect the meaning of automation.Warhol: Automation is a way of making things easy. Automation just gives you something to do.
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
War is Hell
From MSNBC, Lawmaker: Marines killed Iraqis ‘in cold blood’:
A Pentagon probe into the death of Iraqi civilians last November in the Iraqi city of Haditha will show that U.S. Marines "killed innocent civilians in cold blood," a U.S. lawmaker said Wednesday.
From the beginning, Iraqis in the town of Haditha said U.S. Marines deliberately killed 15 unarmed Iraqi civilians, including seven women and three children.
One young Iraqi girl said the Marines killed six members of her family, including her parents. “The Americans came into the room where my father was praying,” she said, “and shot him.”
On Wednesday, Rep. John Murtha, D-Pa., said the accounts are true.
Military officials told NBC News that the Marine Corps' own evidence appears to show Murtha is right.
More Crazy 9/11 Theories, via Cocaine Bust
San Diego defense contractor Titan Corporation, already implicated in the fraudulent bankruptcy of a shadowy St. Petersburg FL company which owned the DC9 "Cocaine One" flight busted in Mexico, employed a Lebanese contractor who assisted Mohamed Atta and other terrorist hijackers in Venice, Florida.
For Titan, the revelation marks the latest in a remarkable series of recent scandals, including employees charged with torture and rape at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, a record $26 million fine and conviction for fixing a Presidential election in the African nation of Benin, and growing infamy for being the biggest money backer of disgraced and soon-to-be-jailed former Congressman Randy “Duke” Cunningham.
The story begins when, while researching “Welcome to TERRORLAND” three years ago, we discovered that Makram Chams, a Lebanese national, had provided significant logistical support for Mohamed Atta and Marwan Al-Shehhi.
Chams, we learned, had even entertained recently-convicted Zacharias Moussaoui in his apartment in Venice.
Sunday, May 14, 2006
Taliban still a lethal force in Afghanistan
"In today's fighting, 11 Taliban were killed, four policemen were killed," said Mohammad Daud Ahmadi, spokesman for the Kandahar governor.The point here is not that 11 Taliban were killed, but that there are still Taliban fighters killing in Afghanistan. I am sure if I looked into this, I will find the number of Taliban attacks and fighters on the rise. I am not happy about this at all. But this is what is to be expected when not enough resources were dedicated to the problem of the Taliban in Afghanistan.
What is the scale of this problem? From the article
Panjwayi...is known to be a hideout for Taliban militants who have been waging a guerrilla-like insurgency against President Hamid Karzai's government for more than four years.Also note the US military response:
The district borders Helmand province which also sees regular attacks blamed on Taliban insurgents said to be allied with the Al-Qaeda network and opium traders.
"We have heard of a national police engagement. There is no involvement of coalition but we're monitoring (the fighting)," spokesman Major Scott Lundy said, "So far, they have not asked for our assistance."The US knows there is a problem with the Taliban, and that there is fighting and Afghan police are dead and wounded. But since noone is asking for help, there is no need to do anything about the problem. Funny, I thought President Bush has drafted a whole policy of pre-emption so the US would not have to worry about being asked first. Or is it the current military's view that it is best to wait until Al-Qaeda once again uses Afghanstan to coordinate an attack against the US. Wait so this can be an easy justification to start a war against, say, Iran.
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
Two men in a bar.
Man 1: George Bush is an asshole.
Man 2: I resent that!
Man 1: You support George Bush????
Man 2: No. I'm an asshole.
Monday, May 08, 2006
Bush, Appointing CIA Directors and Having Fresh Ideas
He's the right man to lead this important agency at this critical moment in our nation's history.Bush, on May 8, 2006, speaking about of nomination of Michael Hayden to be Director of the CIA
He's the right man to lead the CIA at this critical moment in our nation's history.
Steven Colbert Honors President Bush
From Sun-Times, Did media miss real Colbert story?
Wow, wow, what an honor. The White House Correspondents' Dinner. To just sit here, at the same table with my hero, George W. Bush, to be this close to the man. I feel like I'm dreaming. Somebody pinch me. You know what, I'm a pretty sound sleeper, that may not be enough. Somebody shoot me in the face.
Is he really not here tonight? The one guy who could have helped.
By the way, before I get started, if anybody needs anything at their tables, speak slowly and clearly into your table numbers and somebody from the NSA will be right over with a cocktail.
Ladies and gentlemen of the press corps, Mr. President and first lady, my name is Stephen Colbert and it's my privilege tonight to celebrate our president. He's not so different, he and I. We get it. We're not brainiacs on the nerd patrol. We're not members of the "fact-inista." We go straight from the gut, right sir? That's where the truth lies, right down here in the gut. Do you know you have more nerve endings in your gut than you have in your head? You can look it up. I know some of you are going to say "I did look it up," and that's not true. That's because you looked it up in a book. Next time look it up in your gut. I did. My gut tells me that's how our nervous system works.
Every night on my show, "The Colbert Report," I speak straight from the gut, OK? I give people the truth, unfiltered by rational argument. I call it the no-fact zone. Fox News, I own the copyright on that term.
I'm a simple man with a simple mind, with a simple set of beliefs that I live by.
Number one, I believe in America. I believe it exists. My gut tells me I live there. I feel that it extends from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and I strongly believe it has 50 states. And I cannot wait to see how the Washington Post spins that one tomorrow.
I believe the government that governs best is the government that governs least. And by these standards, we have set up a fabulous government in Iraq.
I believe in pulling yourself up by your own bootstraps. I believe it is possible -- I saw this guy do it once in Cirque du Soleil. It was magical.
And though I am a committed Christian, I believe everyone has the right to their own religion, be it Hindu, Jewish or Muslim. I believe there are infinite paths to accepting Jesus Christ as your personal savior.
Ladies and gentlemen, I believe it's yogurt. But I refuse to believe it's not butter. Most of all I believe in this president. Now, I know there are some polls out there saying this man has a 32 percent approval rating. But guys like us, we don't pay attention to the polls. We know that polls are just a collection of statistics that reflect what people are thinking in "reality." And reality has a well-known liberal bias.
So, Mr. President, pay no attention to the people that say the glass is half full. Pay no attention to the people who say the glass is half empty, because 32 percent means it's 2/3 empty. There's still some liquid in that glass is my point, but I wouldn't drink it. The last third is usually backwash.
Folks, my point is that I don't believe this is a low point in this presidency. I believe it is just a lull, before a comeback. I mean, it's like the movie "Rocky." The president is Rocky and Apollo Creed is everything else in the world. It's the 10th round. He's bloodied, his corner man [is] Mick, who in this case would be the vice president, and he's yelling "Cut me, Dick, cut me," and every time he falls she says stay down! Does he stay down? No. Like Rocky, he gets back up and in the end he -- actually loses in the first movie. OK. It doesn't matter. The point is the heart-warming story of a man who was repeatedly punched in the face.
So don't pay attention to the approval ratings that say 68 percent of Americans disapprove of the job this man is doing. I ask you this, does that not also logically mean that 68 percent approve of the job he's not doing? Think about it. I haven't.
I stand by this man. I stand by this man because he stands for things. Not only for things, he stands on things. Things like aircraft carriers and rubble and recently flooded city squares. And that sends a strong message that no matter what happens to America, she will always rebound with the most powerfully staged photo ops in the world.
Now, there may be an energy crisis. This president has a very forward-thinking energy policy. Why do you think he's down on the ranch cutting that brush all the time? He's trying to create an alternative energy source. By 2008 we will have a mesquite-powered car.
And I just like the guy. He's a good joe. Obviously loves his wife, calls her his better half. And polls show America agrees. She's a true lady and a wonderful woman. But I just have one beef, ma'am. I'm sorry, but this reading initiative. I've never been a fan of books. I don't trust them. They're all fact, no heart. I mean, they're elitists telling us what is or isn't true, what did or didn't happen. What's Britannica to tell me the Panama Canal was built in 1914. If I want to say it was built in 1941, that's my right as an American. I'm with the president, let history decide what did or did not happen.
The greatest thing about this man is he's steady. You know where he stands. He believes the same thing Wednesday that he believed on Monday, no matter what happened Tuesday. Events can change, this man's beliefs never will.
And as excited as I am to be here with the president, I am appalled to be surrounded by the liberal media that is destroying America, with the exception of Fox News. Fox News gives you both sides of every story -- the President's side and the vice president's side. But the rest of you, what are you thinking, reporting on NSA wiretapping or secret prisons in Eastern Europe? Those things are secret for a very important reason -- they're super depressing. And if that's your goal, well, misery accomplished.
Over the last five years you people were so good over tax cuts, WMD intelligence, the effect of global warming. We Americans didn't want to know, and you had the courtesy not to try to find out. Those were good times, as far as we knew.
But, listen, let's review the rules. Here's how it works. The president makes decisions, he's the decider. The press secretary announces those decisions, and you people of the press type those decisions down. Make, announce, type. Put them through a spell check and go home.
Get to know your family again. Make love to your wife. Write that novel you got kicking around in your head. You know, the one about the intrepid Washington reporter with the courage to stand up to the administration. You know, fiction.
Monday, May 01, 2006
Where I want to take some photos
Gen Powell (Ret.) on Iraq invasion troop levels
"I made the case to Gen. Franks and Secretary Rumsfeld before the president that I was not sure we had enough troops. The case was made, it was listened to, it was considered. ... A judgment was made by those responsible that the troop strength was adequate.
"The president's military advisers felt that the size of the force was adequate, they may still feel that years later. Some of us don't, I don't. In my perspective, I would have preferred more troops but you know, this conflict is not over.
"At the time the president was listening to those who were supposed to be providing him with military advice. They were anticipating a different kind of immediate aftermath of the fall of Baghdad, it turned out to be not exactly as they had anticipated."