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  xFriday, May 21, 2004

quote of the day


Eric Alterman relates this zinger from The Daily show's Rob Corddry:
Remember, it's not important that we did torture these people. What's important is that we are not the kind of people who would torture these people.

As further details of outrages in Abu Ghraib emerge, I'm beyond appalled -- I'm sickened. It has become more than obvious that Rumsfeld intends to take "responsibility" only by saying he does. The only way to redeem this nations' tarnished honor is when the voters repudiate the entire sorry bunch come November.





  xThursday, May 20, 2004

hal crowther explains it all


Here's an absolutely blistering op-ed decrying the shameless mendacity, execrable arrogance and stunning incompetance of the Bush Administration. It'd make a fine opening statement at Bush's trial. It's too good to quote; read the whole thing.

(via Pandagon)





  x

the abyss gazes also


This is just so wrong.
A military intelligence analyst who recently completed duty at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq said Wednesday that the 16-year-old son of a detainee there was abused by U.S. soldiers to break his father's resistance to interrogators.


The analyst said the teenager was stripped naked, thrown in the back of an open truck, driven around in the cold night air, splattered with mud and then presented to his father at Abu Ghraib, the prison at the center of the scandal over abuse of Iraqi detainees.


Upon seeing his frail and frightened son, the prisoner broke down and cried and told interrogators he would tell them whatever they wanted, the analyst said.

Disgusting. Foul. (And if memory serves me right, it's flagrantly illegal as well.) I thought this was the kind of atrocity we invaded Iraq to stop.

Rumsfeld certainly needs to go -- in disgrace -- for this outrage. But the only way to regain America's honor is for the voters to repudiate this entire scurvy lot that stained it.





  xWednesday, May 19, 2004

cheapo dvd alert


gamera vs baragon

One of the DVDs I ordered off of Amazon the other day arrived this afternoon: the Alpha Video edition of the 1966 daikaiju flick War of the Monsters: Gamera vs Baragon. The first Gamera flick to be filmed in color, it's also the only one of the series in which a child is not the main human character. I picked it up for a mere eight bucks. It's worth it, but that's a double-edged sword: I took a peek, and (as expected for a cheapo DVD) it's obviously a VHS rip, and a rather grainy one at that. Still, the disc does feature a cool collection of posters and lobby cards. I look forward to grooving on the giant monster action!





  x

new at dam


As part of its continuing celebration of the career of remarkable manga-ka Rumiko Takahashi, Destroy All Monsters has posted my review of one of the latest Inu-Yasha DVDs.





  x

baseball post of the day


Congratulations to pitcher Randy Johnson of the Arizona Diamondbacks for throwing a perfect game -- at age 40, yet! Johnson is the oldest pitcher in Major League history to accomplish the feat, which was only the 17th on record.





  x

abu ghraib roundup


CalWashingtonMonthlyPundit has a roundup of the latest developments in the ongoing Abu Ghraib scandal. Meanwhile, Slate's Timothy Noah provides the excuses offered by the new champions of moral relativism on the Right.





  x

swank faux led zep album coves


phony led zep cover

phony led zep cover

FARKer voopa created these two great fake Led Zeppelin album covers for this FARK Pohotshop contest.





  xTuesday, May 18, 2004

they get letters


Inspired by a comment on this CalWashingtonMonthlyPundit thread, I've sent the following letter to Indiana Senator Richard Lugar, Senator Evan Bayh, and Rep. Julia Carson.

I am writing to express my admiration and support for Spec. Joseph Darby, the soldier who upheld the finest traditions of the US military by helping expose the abuses at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. As you may know, some misguided people have been critical of Spec. Darby's actions in exposing the heinous abuses in the prison.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A32048-2004May16.html

By his actions, Spec. Darby has shown more honor and respect for American democratic values than some of his superiors, including many in the current Administration. I urge you to take whatever steps are in your power to see that Spec. Darby receives the recognition as a hero that he deserves.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely yours,
etc. etc.

As an aside, I was somewhat disappointed to note that while Senator Lugar provides an email address on his contact page (as a graphic, no doubt as an anti-spam tactic), Bayh and Carson both use clunky form-based Web mail instead. That's nonsense. I should be able to fire off an email to my Senator and Representative any time I feel like it, without having to navigate a time-consuming form.





  xMonday, May 17, 2004

kawaii gaming post of the day


hello kitty ps2 mem card

Behold this Hello Kitty PS2 memory card. Kawaii!!

(via BoingBoing, which also passes the word that the guy who played Squiggy on Laverne and Shirley is now a scout for the Seattle Mariners; cross-posted at Destroy All Monsters)





  x

many happy returns


John Scalzi has some beautiful words of advice to the gay and lesbian couples getting married in Massachusetts.

(via BoingBoing)





  x

today's headlines from iraq


Funny, I remember one of the early Rationales-of-the-Day from the Bush Administration in selling its coveted war on Iraq was to prevent nerve gas from falling into the hands of terrorists.

Snark aside, the assassination of the Iraqi Governing Council's current president is a much grimmer development. Bush's failure to provide security in Iraq is jeopardizing his goals and seriously damaging US security. With Bush having decided to stake his re-election as a "war president," it boggles the mind how incompetently his administration has conducted the occupation. It'll be cold comfort if Bush's incompetence fails to secure his re-election even as it fails to bolster -- indeed, substantially undermines -- national security.





  x

quote of the day


The Washington Post weighs in with a strongly worded editorial on the developing prisoner abuse scandal.

[U]nambiguous dedication to the rule of law has distinguished American governments, until now, from those that systematically violate human rights. Perhaps the administration has gained valuable information through its harsh treatment of prisoners, though it has offered no evidence for this. But no gains could possibly justify the abuses that have been exposed or the damage done when an American secretary of defense declares to the world that holding detainees hooded and contorted is in keeping with international law and American values.


(via Mark A.R. Kleiman)





  x

lovecraft post of the day


The public domain works of H.P. Lovecraft are in this online library for your enjoyment...er, terror. (The same site also hosts an Edgar Allen Poe library.) c00L!

(via occultobscura via Byzantium's Shores)





  x

new at dam


I forgot to mention the other day that Destroy All Monsters has posted my review of yet another Rumiko Takahashi anime series, the romantic comedy Maison Ikkoku.





  x

blogger woes


I've spent almost no time tweaking the template in the wake of the recent Blogger redesign, but I have discovered the reason the comments templates are boinked. The individual pages Blogger creates to support the comment system are stored in separate directories, and of course the template code doesn't point to the graphics and style sheets correctly. Rather than work to correct this vexing quirk, I'll probably renew my efforts to resume the former comment system. Updates will follow as appropriate.





  xSunday, May 16, 2004

swank sounds


esquiviel album

We visited Louisville this weekend and had a very pleasant time. Part of the fun was dropping in on a couple of my favorite stores, Ear X-Tacy and The Great Escape, where I used to spend a lot of time -- and money -- back in my college days. Although I didn't go on a wild spending spree despite having a couple hundred extra bucks in the bank (more on that in a moment), I did see one thing at The Great Escape that I absolutely had to have: A used vinyl copy of Esquiviel's Other Worlds, Other Sounds for a mere four bucks -- and in decent condition, yet!

My dad taped the album and promises to convert the recording to CD -- a good thing, too, as it turns out the CD is out of print and quite rare. The album itself is now framed, and will go on my wall as soon as I figure out the appropriate spot.

In searching for the album cover art, I discovered this groovy essay on space-age bachelor pad type music. And I must admit, the purchase has sparked an interest in picking up a few more CDs of Esquiviels, Arthur Lyman, Martin Denny and the great Les Baxter.

As I mentioned, I also received an unexpected bonus from work. I'd thought that they banked the overtime I've been working by default, but instead they pay it out. I took advantage of the fact to do a little joy shopping, and got some groovy stuff off of Amazon. Details will follow when the package arrives, but I was able to apply the difference in price of the DVDs I got from the cost at the stores where I looked to pick up an extra couple of flicks. Groovy!






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