Sunday, February 27, 2011


I can't decide whether this is cute or frightening. I noticed that the audio of the robot in action is not recorded here. The earlier version was deafening and positively creepy, like a buzz saw. Imagine if they could speed this machine up, say, about three times so that it was… out-runnable! 

Saturday, February 26, 2011

First Aid Kit–Ghost Town

I really enjoyed every thing about this video, the evocative music, the faintly ghostly atmosphere, and the natural unique beauty of the two sisters.  Johanna (b. 1990) and Klara (b. 1993)  Söderberg. from Enskede, a southern suburb of Stockholm,began composing songs in 2007. This is another example of how Youtube has given an opportunity for new artists to emerge. Their YouTube video cover of a Fleet Foxes song, Tiger Mountain Peasant Song- a gem, even as a cover- attracted attention of the public and the industry.  

Their debut album "The Big Black & The Blue" was released on January 25th, 2010.


Thursday, February 24, 2011

Attack of the Clones


"We are taking this very seriously," says Dr. Holden Steady of the Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases in Jubber, Indiana. "It has already affected millions of Americans and as yet, there's no vaccine or treatment."

The source of the outbreak has been pinpointed to a facility in upstate New York, where experiments were conducted throughout last decade. The goal of the top secret tests, sponsored by DARPA- Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, was to create a clone by utilizing parts of a normal cold virus with a stem cells from a donor. Once inside the host's body, the viral infection transfers and replaces the host DNA with donor's, effectively producing an exact clone of the donor.

According to unconfirmed reports, the donor DNA was harvested from the failed vice-presidential Republican candidate, Sarah Palin. While a student in one of the many universities she says she attended, Palin participated in a scientific experiment which required a sample of her DNA.

"I guess we screwed up It happens now and then."

This sample was frozen for nearly thirty years and when medical technicians heard of the sample, they requested it to use in one of their own advanced laboratory trials. "We just thought it would be easier to identify the characteristics of such a well-known personality.

She is somebody whose face is everywhere you turn anyway. We just thought we'd be able to spot the infection easier,"stated one unnamed lab technician. "I guess we screwed up. It happens now and then. There's no use in pointing fingers."

Although the research facility maintains that its scientists followed every protocol, clearly there were lapses in security. "When one of the lab assistants was examining an infected mice, she was bitten on the finger. The infected mice tend to be quite aggressive and hard to handle, even by experts. The lab assistant reported the breach and was isolated. It was, however, too late to stop the transmission of the Palin virus,"explained Dr. Kirby Malone of Stanford University.

"Classified documents show that the lab assistant (whose name has been withheld for privacy reasons) eventually lost all of her own identity and became, what company officials called, 'a 95% Palin clone.'

Different strains of the disease have been reported but all show similar cloning capabilities. If scientists fears are true, we could see a whole generation of Sarah Palin clones in our society. All of them with her DNA. It's a frightening possibility unless we do something to stop it."

By the use of blood analysis kits in major hospitals and clinics scientists have been able to chart the spread and report that the disease has been confined to various urban areas in the American Southwest, including Arizona and Nevada and Texas. It is quite likely to spread all over the world if nothing is done, they say.

"Look at me. People ask me all the time if I am related to that…. woman."

Most of the patients are understandably frightened and angry. Take Alan Parish of Roanne Virginia. Exposed to the virus in the summer of 2010, Alan, a former bodybuilder and plumber, has been unable to find a job. "Look at me. People ask me all the time if I am related to that… woman. They talk about the resemblance. I mean, I know it," Alan said as his right eye twitched in an uncontrollable wink.

Yolanda Hernedez, 22, of Riverton Colorado can relate,"I have lost all my friends because of this damned disease. And the only people who want to spend any time with me now are the other people who have caught it. I hate it. We sit around and talk nonsense all day and try to steal the spotlight from one another."

Psychological symptoms include a noticeable verbal incoherence, similar to Tourette's syndrome, and inability to focus on one subject at a time, mild episodes of paranoia, a desperate need for attention, a heightened level of impulsive and erratic behavior.

Additonally those infected with the Palin virus tend to lose their color perception and see things in black and white and in much less detail. Depth perception is often affected as well. Advanced symptoms include a disregard for the feelings of loved ones and family. Often sufferers will feel victimized although it is really more related to their own behavior.

Disclaimer: Nomadic View blog does not in any way vouch for the authenticity and veracity of the articles. This blog is not a news service or news organization. Its posts are primarily designed as a source of entertainment.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Nils Jorgensen In Color

It was difficult to select the best of this photographer's work. There were just too many to choose from. Take a look at the gallery by following this link.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Mohammad Mokhtari

FotoSketcher - 180734_130176350384837_130172983718507_186554_2424443_n

برای دوستان ایرانی من

A 22-year-old university student, died on Tuesday from a gunshot wound he suffered while participating in Tehran's pro-democracy demonstrations the previous day. He is the second person confirmed to have lost his life as a result of the 25 Bahman protests, following Saneh Jaleh. As in the case of Jaleh, the Islamic Republic regime has undertaken an intensive propaganda campaign to claim him as a government supporter, a campaign that has yet to account for the young man's final posting on his Facebook page: "God, let me die standing, because I'm tired of this life of degradation."

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Neil Hannon–A Lady of a Certain Age


Neil Hannon (solo) - "A Lady Of A Certain Age"

Back in the day you had been part of the smart set
You'd holidayed with kings, dined out with starlets
From London to New York, Cap Ferrat to Capri
In perfume by Chanel and clothes by Givenchy
You sipped camparis with David and Peter
At Noel's parties by Lake Geneva
Scaling the dizzy heights of high society
Armed only with a cheque-book and a family tree
You chased the sun around the Cote d'Azur
Until the light of youth became obscured
And left you on your own and in the shade
An English lady of a certain age
And if a nice young man would buy you a drink
You'd say with a conspiratorial wink
"You wouldn't think that I was.. seventy"
And he'd say,"no, you couldn't be!"

You had to marry someone very very rich
So that you might be kept in the style to which
You had all of your life been accustomed to
But that the socialists had taxed away from you
You gave him children, a girl and a boy
To keep your sanity a nanny was employed
And when the time came they were sent away
Well that was simply what you did in those days
You chased the sun around the Cote d'Azur
Until the light of youth became obscured
And left you on your own and in the shade
An English lady of a certain age
And if a nice young man would buy you a drink
You'd say with a conspiratorial wink
"You wouldn't think that I was.. sixty three"
And he'd say,"no, you couldn't be!

Your son's in stocks and bonds and lives back in Surrey
Flies down once in a while and leaves in a hurry
Your daughter never finished her finishing school
Married a strange young man of whom you don't approve
Your husband's hollow heart gave out one Christmas Day
He left the villa to his mistress in Marseilles
And so you come here to escape your little flat
Hoping someone will fill your glass and let you chat about how
You chased the sun around the Cote d'Azur
Until the light of youth became obscured
And left you all alone and in the shade
An English lady of a certain age
And if a nice young man would buy you a drink
You'd say with a conspiratorial wink
"You wouldn't think that I was.. fifty three"
And he'd say,"no, you couldn't be!

An absolute masterpiece of poetry! Wow. Lovely and funny and sad, all at the same time.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Black and White - Nils Jorgensen

I love the whimsical cleverness of this photographer. It makes you wonder what you may be missing if you are looking closely. You can find more of his at this link:

Next week, I will bring some of his color photography too.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Big Foot



Wasilla, Alaska-- Is Bigfoot stalking Sarah Palin? That's the big question in the small town of Wasilla, Alaska, hometown of the failed vice-presidential candidate and half term governor of the state.

"We' just thought it was another false alarm. We get a lot of calls, you know. But then we saw the tracks and thought this isn't just paranoia this time, said Officer Clyde McGulligan."We traced the footprints right up to the back door of the house. It's Bigfoot all right. Even Todd doesn't have feet that large."

On 4 June 2010, around 3 in the morning, local police officers who were in charge of a stake-out, noticed unusual activity on the Palin premises. "At first, we thought it might be a female grizzly come down from the mountains in search of food. Also, female grizzlies often have a misplaced maternal sense which can get them into all kinds of trouble."

However, what they saw next was no wild bear. " At first, we heard this pathetic mewing sound, like a lost kitten or something so we patrolled the area. Then, all the sudden, there is was. It must have been seven or eight foot tall and covered in shaggy hair. I remember it smelled like animal feces. But I think most of all I'll remember those eyes. Bright yellow."

The two officers were so stunned by what they had stumbled up, they were frozen. "I admit it. I couldn't draw my weapon. I couldn't even speak. We all just stood there looking at each other. I think it was as shocked as we were."

After a few seconds, the creature turned and jogged into the forest, but not before, leaping over the the 12- foot barricade fence that surrounds the compound.

Another source, who worked as security for the Palin family but wished to remain anonymous, stated that this wasn't the only time the creature had been spotted. "I know it sounds crazy but this thing- whatever it was- seemed to be drawn to the Palin family. It would be around every other weekend. I don't think it means any harm."

Even scientists who have investigated the Bigfoot phenomenon for decades are perplexed by the behavior of the beast. They offer only one possible explanation.

"We suspect it must be the mating season for Bigfoot. Perhaps there is something that he finds attractive about the ex-governor. At this point, we can't imagine what that might be."

Disclaimer: In order for there to be no confusion, the blog Nomadic Post makes no claim to the authenticity of the posts. The articles are designed primarily for the entertainment of our readers.

Monday, February 14, 2011

That's the Way.. uh-huh uh-huh.. I Like It.

Just found a cool site for anybody who'd like to indulge their nostalgic tendencies.

The magical jukebox will take you back to any year you wish to listen to the hits. And some hits they were too.

Right now, I am trapped in the late 1970s and I admit to liking the feeling. (Actually, it's more than a feeling).   I am listening to.. (gurp) "Looks like we got us a  CONVOY!"  That's a song I used to listen to- not by choice, I hasten to add- and you know what? I still can't understand a thing the man says.  Something about a CON- voy.. a rubber duck and a bear. (But it does not sound much like a children's song, as far as I can tell.)

That's not a great example, perhaps. I remember feeling queasy even  when it was popular.  But.. Foghat- Slow Ride still sounds just fine to me. Even after all these years.

Ah, all those memories! 

See if you can find your favorite song of all time and share it with me.

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The Color of Success

Saturday, February 12, 2011

News Flash!


If CNN's latest report is true, Sarah Palin may be serious about running for president after all. In the last few days, she has apparently decided to add a veteran Republican strategist to serve as chief-of-staff for her political action committee, Sarah PAC. If so, she is off to a pretty bad start…. (Click here to read the rest at Politicalgates.)

Jose Gonzalez- How Low

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Message to the Brave Egyptian People:



Friday, February 11, 2011

Found and Lost

found and lost

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The Lost Balloon- by William Holbrook Beard


William Holbrook Beard (April 13, 1825 – February 20, 1900) was an American painter.

Beard was born in Painesville, Ohio. He studied abroad, and in 1861 moved to New York City, where, in 1862, he became a member of theNational Academy of Design.

He was a prolific worker and a man of much inventiveness and originality, though of modest artistic endowment. His humorous treatment of bears, cats, dogs, horses and monkeys, generally with some human occupation and expression, usually satirical, gave him a great vogue at one time, and his pictures were largely reproduced.

His brother, James Henry Beard (1814-1893), was also a painter.

William is buried in Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn, New York.

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Thursday, February 10, 2011

Another Victory

Sarah Wins

The latest Fox News opinion poll shows that if the presidential election were held today, Sarah Palin would be the clear winner. Sixty-nine percent of the registered American voters stated they would definitely vote for Sarah Palin for president if she were running against such internationally known and high-profile candidates as Mr. Magoo or Barney the Dinosaur.

Similar findings in last month's Fox News opinion pool found that the ex-Alaskan governor's overwhelming lead over any cartoon or fictional character, either from novels or film, continues to widen..

Results show that respondents in comparison to Magoo, Palin offers a clear vision for America while Palin compares favorably against Barney's clearly progressive stand of issues such as peanut butter sandwiches and sandwiches made with pumpernickel bread. Additionally, many of those questioned felt Palin looked better in magenta.

Commenting on the poll, Palin spokesperson Shirley Eujist noted, "It's really a lot better than even we expected. And Sarah love surveys and polls because they show the true spirit of American democracy. She appreciates the way they can be interpreted to mean nearly anything."

"Given what these polls demonstrate," said Fox News spokesman Abe Ologello, "we predict liberals are headed for another major defeat in 2012." In order ot avoid the bother in what seems to be a foregone conclusion, Ologello observed, American voters should be encouraged to remain at home and watch Fox for all the results. "So, there's really no need for Americans to vote at all. Murdoch can decide this election for you."

Disclaimer: Nomadic View is not a news organization, fair or balanced or otherwise. Its blog post are designed primarily for entertainment and should not be used as a source for authentic or accurate information.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Keeping the Secrets

In Richard Schenkmann and Kurt Reiger's book, "One Night Stands with American History" one can find a lot of amusing, fascinating and strange tidbits from America's past. It's a fun read but, I did find this interesting passage that made me shudder- twice.
"In her book, Reporting Live, former CBS White House correspondent Lesley Stahl wrote that she and other reporters suspected that Reagan was "sinking into senility' years before he left office. She wrote that the White House aides 'covered up his condition' and journalists chose not to pursue it. Stahl described a particularly unsettling encounter with Reagan in the summer of 1986, her 'final meeting' with the president, typically a chance to ask a few parting questions for a 'going-away story.' But White House press secretary Larry Speaks made her promise not to ask anything.

Although she'd covered Reagan for years, the glazed-eyed and fogged-up president "didn't seem to know who I was," wrote Stahl. For several minutes, as she talked to him in the Oval Office, a vacant Reagan barely seemed to realize anyone else in the room. Meanwhile, Speakes was literally shouting instructions to the president, reminding him to give Stahl White House souvenirs. Panicking at the thought of having to report on the night's news that the president of the United States is a doddering space cadet." Stahl was relieved that Reagan soon re-emerged into alertness, recognized her, and chatted coherently with her husband, the screenwriter. "I had come that close to reporting Reagan was senile."
It is this kind of insider gossip that really makes me question how seriously Stahl, and so many people in this industry, takes her role as a journalist. She seems to miss a crucial point- a matter of duty and responsibility. She has chosen to reveal the information about her suspicions of Reagan's declining mental health but only for her book and only when that information had become obsolete and the fact was irrelevant.

After all, the state of the president's mind is no small detail. A person with the control of the United States nuclear arsenal at his disposal, whose alertness and mental agility could spell the difference between survival of the the human race or its obliteration. surely the public has a right to know that the person with the very real potential of destroying the world might have come unhinged. It never seems to cross her mind at all. This isn't a matter of some foolish sexual misconduct, as in Clinton case. None of the reporters had many qualms in pursuing that matter in all its gory unseemly details.

In fact, Reagan's mental state might very well have been a factor in the disasters that befell his second term. The Republican revisionists have done a fairly good job at cleaning up the mess, not unlike the photo-doctors in Orwell's Nineteen-Eighty Four. Reagan's magnificence today goes unquestioned and his legend is in no danger of being exposed as a sham.

People like Palin and Bachmann are scrambling over themselves to attempt to steal some of Reagan's "stardust" no matter how illegitimate the comparison might be. One viewing of Reagan at his best puts paid that comparison in an instant, of course. Even when at his senile Reagan made a lot more sense than either Bachmann's unpredictable ignorant and at times frightening pronouncements or Palin's laughable, meaningless "word salads."

Doubts, Deceptions and Secrets
Using a lot of metaphorical Vaseline and gauze to cover the lens of history, the Republican myth makers have been extremely effective at the creation of Ronald Reagan- Great American President. It helps a lot if you are ignorant of American history and are very un-curious.

Looking over the evidence, I am inclined to disagree with Stahl's assessment of Reagan's mental state, although quite often in the early stages of Alzheimer's, the lapses come and go. Reagan's son, Ronald Reagan, Jr. (not the other one) has confirmed the Reagan's last years as president were affected. The motif of son's keeping their father's secret is a subject for many theatrical productions.

Still this kind of admission is, in some ways, excuse-making for some of the more embarrassing abuses of power that characterized Reagan's second term. Few people who have looked into the history- the true one and not the manufactured one- can deny that Reagan, for whatever reason, deceived the American people repeatedly about the Iran-Contra scandal and, when evidence emerged of the lies, lied about lying.

For example, take this video clip of two Reagan speeches. First the lie and then lie about the lie.

(Update: The video -from November 14 1986- which shows Reagan lying about selling arms- stating categorically that the administration had never engaged in trade with a terrorist nation in exchange for a release of hostages- has been scrubbed. Vanished from the public scrutiny except for a transcript. He told the public: "The United States has not made concessions to those who hold our people captive in Lebanon. And we will not."

By March of 1987 he changed his story again and said "A few months ago I told the American people I did not trade arms for hostages. My heart and my best intentions still tell me that's true, but the facts and the evidence tell me it is not.")

                           Reagan in 1986

But even that's not accurate. Top secret NSA documents, dated January 17, 1986 prove only that Reagan was aware of the arms trade agreement with Iran but actually gave official authorization - signed by the president himself- for the program.
I hereby find that the following operation in a foreign country (including all support necessary to such operation) is important to the national security and due to its extreme sensitivity and security risks, I determine it is essential to limit prior notice, and direct the Director of CIA to refrain from reporting this Finding to the Congress as provided in Section 501 of the National Security Act of 1947, as amended, until I otherwise direct.
The foreign country mentioned, the document shows, was Iran. and the the president's policy was as follows
The USG will act to facilitate efforts by third parties and third countries to establish contact with moderate elements within and outside the Government of Iran by providing these elements with arms, equipment and related material in order to enhance their credibility of those elements in the effort to achieve a more pro-US government in Iran by demonstrating their ability to obtain requisite resources to defend their country against Iraq and intervention by the Soviet Union..
The final paragraph states that this arrangement applies only to moderate elements and if it could shown that the contacts within Iran were not moderate, the arms deal would close shop. As it turned out, what Reagan, George Bush, Sr, Donald Regan, McFarlane and Poindexter felt was skilled diplomacy turned out to be hopelessly naive, since it was impossible to determine, given the limited independent and verifiable sources, who was moderate and who was radical inside Iran. Because it was conducted in such a incredibly careless way- through a series of con men and shady characters- untold sums were simply pocketed.

At the initial meeting some ten days prior to the signing of the above finding, there had been arguments over the proposed arm shipments. After the whole embarrassing mess became public, Secretary of State George Shultz would later reveal to the Tower Commission, investigating the illegal shipments that George Bush had supported the arms-for-hostages deal at this meeting, as did President Reagan, Casey, Meese, Regan and Poindexter. Shultz reported that he himself and Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger both opposed further arms shipments.

This could one of the reasons why as president George Bush, Jr. on November 1, 2001, issued Executive Order 13233 which limited public access to papers of all presidents since 1980. A 1978 law provided for the release of presidential papers 12 years after the president leaves office, so Ronald Reagan’s papers would have been released next year. Reagan issued an order in 1989 that called for disclosure of most of his official papers 12 years after he left office but under the new executive order the papers can be kept secret even if the president in question wants them released. President Bush’s father was vice president during the Reagan administration.

As far as the arm shipment arrangement, there could be, for political and legal reasons,no oversight and this allowed all kinds of chicanery and skullduggery. Still worse, against Congress clear and direct orders, some of the money gained by illegally selling weapons to our enemy was recycled into funding the Contras, a group fighting the leftist government in Nicaragua. The very public investigation reminded viewers of the previous Republican scandal of Watergate and again many were saying this was grounds for impeachment. Hearings were held, careers were ruined.
At some point in the middle of Reagan's second term, the signs were pretty obvious that he was losing his touch. He was constantly being caught up in one half-truth after another. And still worse, he seemed to be losing interest. Like Bush Jr., he appeared happiest when he was at his ranch with Nancy. Meanwhile, others were filling the vacuum.

When Reagan spoke in public, you could sense every staff member of the White House holding their breaths, whispering a prayer to what god might be listening, and standing poised to pick up the debris. (But then it was probably like that for all of the eight years of the George Bush's administration and nobody has claimed him to be senile.)

I recall the strangely uncomfortable mix of disgust and despair when in a press conference, Reagan denied four times a certain critical point in the scandal of selling arms to Iran, that Israel, one of the third parties, was involved in the arms shipments to Iran. Reagan stated unequivocally they were not. He was clearly getting flustered and annoyed. He finished the press conference, still clearly baffled and upset, only to have a statement issued to the press twenty minutes later completely revising that adamant denial. He was having trouble remembering what the press already knew and what he had already said he didn't know.

It is clear now that Reagan was stating one policy to the American people- a policy of firmness and strength- while conducting an altogether foolish opposing policy behind closed doors. He reassured them and then he would admit this but not that.. later that but not this. All very embarrassing but it's all forgotten now. The fixers of history have come along and whitewashed all that they could and now everybody emulates America's greatest president.
So, Is all this talk of the president's creeping senility another example of the whitewashing of history?

In any case, Stahl's shrugging of her responsibility to report her suspicion - and not even on the point of discretion, since she was willing to put it in her book- is a mark against her credentials as a respected journalist. Although there was a suspicion that Reagan was becoming detached from reality, nobody had the courage-the strength of character- to step forward and suggest the cause.
More importantly, because she is still a practicing journalist, why should we trust her judgment today? 

It's only fair to ask, when we watch her rather fawning interview of Speaker of the House John Boehner, in which the man breaks down in tears repeatedly, what does she know that she is not telling us? Does he have some kind of emotional problem because it certainly seems like inappropriate behavior. Especially given that the subject is really quite ordinary. Are we really expected to have confidence in a person who may or may not be on this side of normal? This is, after all, the man who stands third in line to the presidency. Don't we have a right to know, even of suspicions?

What revelation will Lesley keep from us for the sake of her next book?

If you enjoyed this post, please pass it on with twitter or link elsewhere. If you have comments, I'd also like to hear your feedback. Thanks for visiting and come back soon.


But Imagine 30 years of Bush, and you'd be angry too.

Monday, February 7, 2011


Poem for my Parents



Just a note here, this poem was made using this nifty and fun tool.  It uses a concept like refrigerator magnets with a large list of words- not quite unlimited. I spent about an hour there, composing this poem. Suddenly I noticed my poem unraveling.. my carefully selected words would disappear. Then   I realized that I wasn't alone at the site and others were snatching my words away to make their own poems. That seemed symbolic of something, I don't know what but something. Maybe I can write a poem about it.

A challenge to my readers: Go ahead and use this poetry tool and give it your best shot. If you like it, send it as a comment.


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Sunday, February 6, 2011

Seriously–Part II

This is the second part of an investigation The first part of Seriously can be found HERE.

The question I asked is: Why is it important to stop laughing and to start taking people like Palin, Beck and Bachmann seriously?


Amid the traumatic national shock that followed the Tucson shooting, many people from both sides of the political spectrum, attempted to learn if the suspected shooter 22-year-old Jared Loughner was politically motivated or whether this was bildethe act of an attention-seeking mentally-disturbed individual.

There was enough evidence on both sides of the argument.

The congressional elections between Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and Tea Party Republican candidate, Jesse Kelly had been hotly contested. Many thought the tone, the level of rhetoric around the nation had become excessive. Some questioned whether the fact that Giffords is Arizona's first Jewish Congresswoman might have been a motive.

Others saw a conspiracy elsewhere, citing the campaigning style of Giffords' opponent, Kelly, as less than commendable. For example, Kelly ran an ad urging his supporters to "get on target for victory in November. Help remove Gabrielle Giffords from office Shoot a fully automatic M16 with Jesse Kelly."

Note it doesn't say, help vote Giffords out of office.

More suspiciously, according to Arizona Capitol Reports (subscription-only newsletter), Jesse Kelly was apparently so eager to challenge her again, that he requested a legal inquiry as to whether he could run again if Giffords lost her seat:

Attorney Lee Miller, who serves as legal counsel for the Arizona Republican Party, told our reporter Kelly’s campaign contacted him earlier this week to find out how the seat would be filled if Giffords couldn’t serve.

On the other hand, Most people who knew Jared Loughner confirmed that he was troubled. Almost immediately, stories began to emerge from classmates and friends of obvious mental instability.

Videos of text posted on a YouTube channel set up in the name of Jared Lee Loughner show a deep distrust of the government and religion, describing US laws as "treasonous" and speaking repeatedly of his wish to create a new currency. "The government is implying mind control and brainwash on the people by controlling grammar," he wrote. "No! I won't pay debt with a currency that's not backed by gold and silver! No! I won't trust in God!" His Internet postings also indicated an interest in hardline ideology, listing Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels's The Communist Manifesto and Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf among his favourite books.

There's something for every finger-pointer there, it seems. Based on this reading list, the Conservatives and Liberals could both happily make claims about the shooter's political ideology. Because everybody knows that whoever reads Mein Kampf must be a Nazi and whoever reads The Communist Manifesto has to a card-carrying commie. That's taken for granted, isn't it?

Other books, such as “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,” “Brave New World,” “Animal Farm” and “Fahrenheit 451,” suggest an interest in or antagonism against oppressive regimes committed to stifling all individual initiative and thought. Still, where does "The Wizard of Oz," “Peter Pan" or "Alice in Wonderland" fit in?

Mea Culpa?

Regarding criticism about the use of cross-hairs to "target" Democratic candidates running against Tea Party candidates, (as well as some of her remarks), former vice-presidential candidate and ex-governor of Alaska Sarah Palin - excuse the expression- came under fire. Her video-taped response turned out to be a public relations disaster. sarahpalin01

In it, Palin dramatized her outrage at the very idea that she could be responsible. It was a smear by the liberal media, she told us, this, on the very day of mourning for victims of the attack. How, she asked, could she be blamed for the criminal actions of a lunatic. (This was in no way a mea culpa thingy.) This claim that people cannot be held responsible for actions done in their name smacked of a shrugging off of responsibility and to the more legally-minded, seemed demonstrably untrue. There is a well-established legal definition of incitement to violence, and it involves three parts:

(1) that the person is directly being encouraged (or “incited”) to commit some act of violence, and

(2) there is a clear and present danger that the person will commit the act, and

(3) that the person does, in fact, commit the act.

Whether Palin was actually guilty of this is another question.

I, like a lot of Americans, found the whole video presentation by Palin disturbing and a little perplexing. Side-step the bizarre application of the phrase "blood libel," a term once used by militant bigoted Christians to slander Jews. And forget the poor timing. Ignore, if you, can, the narcissism of her victim-hood. Excusing all those other errors in judgment and lapses in taste and sensitivity, one is still left with an ambitious person with a clear inability to accept even the possibility either her words or deeds were ill-advised. (I am not speaking of an apology of some kind of admission of guilt.) That lack of self-reflection alone should disqualify any candidate for high office.

This was not the only time her careless manner of speaking has landed her in hot water. When Palin talked about "hunting down" Julian Assange like a terrorist- (despite the fact he still hasn't be charged, tried or convicted) it could be easy to say, she is merely ignorant of due process. Still, she wasn't hunting the co-founder of Wikileaks to give him a gift, she was really talking about hunting, as she does in Alaska.. to caribou. In other words, she was referring to the assassination of an innocent man.

But then Beck is hardly any better. In the past, Beck has "joked" about putting poison in Nancy Pelosi's wine. Taking on an Oscar-winning film maker, he once said: "Hang on, let me just tell you what I'm thinking. I'm thinking about killing Michael alg_resize_mouth_glenn-beckMoore, and I'm wondering if I could kill him myself, or if I would need to hire somebody to do it."

It is easy enough to write this off as irresponsible and rather childish behavior from an adult who presumably should know better. I have heard people tell me, "Oh, get over it. It's only a joke. He isn't serious." But, given the fact that Beck seems to take himself seriously and expects others to do the same, given the fact that Beck isn't speaking on some lonely AM radio station in the middle of nowhere but on an international cable network, it is a serious matter indeed. People watch and people believe.

Whether either of these two choose to admit it or not, if nothing else, this kind of talk sets a tone, a kind of tacit acceptance of violence, a climate in which people are permitted to make entirely specious claims, to resort to name-calling and to use thinly veiled threats and intimidation- whether actual or implied- to express themselves.

Following the shooting of Giffords in which six innocent bystanders were killed, there were calls for a lowering of the violent rhetoric. If there was a moment of self-reflection, a consideration that foolish words can lead to thoughtless actions, it certainly didn't last long. These calls were, for the most part, ignored. The best response the Far Right could give was to point fingers at the Left and shout, "You do it too!" and then, it was business as usual.

As I mentioned in my previous post, one of Beck's favorite themes is the liberal Nazi takeover that is secretly (well, nearly) plotting to take over the country. Any proposal or any piece of legislation, any line from a speech, with the magical use of Beck cross-eyed history lessons and pseudo-journalistic style, can be magically transformed into a Nazi bogyman.

A fair question: What could be the motive for people like Beck to paint the president as a Nazi? To harp day in and day out about a threat that a fascist state is about to emerge, that the progressives are about to round up all the conservatives and put them into labor camps. Any day, so he claims. Does he think this kind of talk enhances his credibility? Is credibility even an important issue for Beck?

In Defiance of Godwin's Law

If you've never heard of it before, Godwin's law is a tongue-in-cheek observation made by Mike Godwin in 1989 which has become an Internet adage. The law states: As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches.

The rule, please note, doesn't make any comment upon whether the statement is valid or not, merely that as the longer the argument continues, the greater the likelihood that the Nazi bogeyman will appear. It is precisely because such a comparison or reference may sometimes be appropriate, Godwin has argued that overuse of Nazi and Hitler comparisons should be avoided, because it robs the valid comparisons of their impact. Other corollaries to this rule state that the person who first uses this comparison usually loses the argument because it has a tendency to boomerang on the proponents.

This point may or may not have escaped the executives at Fox News.

As a matter of fact, Fox News is constantly using the Nazi analogies, especially Glenn Beck. In my previous blog post I quoted Dana Millibank of the Washington Post noted,

"In his first 18 months on Fox News, from early 2009 through the middle of this year, [Beck] and his guests invoked Hitler 147 times. Nazis, an additional 202 times. Fascism or fascists, 193 times. The Holocaust got 76 mentions, and Untitled-1Joseph Goebbels got 24 mentions."

In November of 2010, Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes defended a recently aired Fox expose on George Soros titled “The Puppet Master,” which accused the Jewish financier of funding a conspiratorial “shadow government” and manipulating regimes and currencies to his own benefit. (As another blogger noted, the very term "puppet-master" is highly charged racial term, dating back to Nazi claims that political leaders in Germany, and later America and Britain, were puppets of the Jews.) According to liberal pundits and some Jewish leaders who condemned the broadcast, the news story flirted with anti-Semitic stereotypes.

And this in turn led four hundred rabbis from almost all of the main branches of Judaism in the US to take out two full page ads, one in the Wall Street journal and another in Forward, calling upon Rupert Murdoch, owner of New Corp's Fox News to take action against what they see as excessive use of the Holocaust and Nazi analogies to disparage his mostly liberal political opponents.

The main problem with using this comparison, is, as Godwin's law states, because it robs the valid comparisons of their impact. It wasn't that everybody was forbidden to use these terms and those comparisons except for Jews, as Roger Ailes attempted to suggest. Rather, the problem is that every time you compare this event or that government proposal to a Nazi Holocaust, you disrespect, you desensitize, and you blur the meanings ever so slightly. When everything is a Nazi plot, an atrocity, then nothing is. When everybody you disagree with become Hitler's twin, then nobody is a Nazi.

Control of the Comparison

Strangely enough when these excesses by conservative media or politicians are brought to the publics attentions, it can easily be twisted. Especially with compliant media organizations. Case in point:

Say What? Democrat Compares Republicans to Nazis

The newfound civility didn’t last long. Political rhetoric in Congress doesn’t get much nastier than the words of one House Democrat during the debate on repealing the health care law.

In an extraordinary outburst on the House floor, Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN) invoked the Holocaust to attack Republicans on health care and compared rhetoric on the issue to the work of infamous Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels.

“They say it's a government takeover of health care, a big lie just like Goebbels," Cohen said. "You say it enough, you repeat the lie, you repeat the lie, and eventually, people believe it. Like blood libel. That's the same kind of thing. And Congressman Cohen didn’t stop there. “The Germans said enough about the Jews and people believed it--believed it and you have the Holocaust. We heard on this floor, government takeover of health care. Politifact said the biggest lie of 2010 was a government takeover of health care because there is no government takeover," Cohen said.

That serves a warning to any Progressive politician who dares to make the parallels that Beck and others make on a daily basis. Basically the message is: "We can talk about Nazis, the Holocaust, eugenic experiments, prison camps and death panels, we can make phony comparisons about Obama and Hitler, but anyone on the Left should refrain." In other words, the control over that imagery and those comparisons belong solely to the Right.

The argument from the Far Right is Cohen is an elected official and shouldn't be throwing around phrases carelessly. If, they say, Palin is to be held to a certain standard then why shouldn't politicians on the Left as well? It's a good point.

And besides, they say, who really takes THAT Beck character seriously? Seriously or not, some people seem to enjoy watching him, for whatever reason. Through late January and into early February 2010, Glenn Beck drew nearly three million viewers each night. That's quite an audience. What about Cohen? Congressman Cohen's speech was given to to a mostly empty House chamber where Republican efforts to repeal the health care law was taking place. Still there was widespread condemnation for Cohen's remarks. For Beck's remarks, a shrug.

But it's true: Beck isn't an elected official. It's the nice thing about being a "personality." You don't have the same kind of scrutiny and you don't have the restraints. That responsibility stuff can sure be a hindrance to free speech. Despite his non-elected status, Beck certainly enjoys campaigning although nobody is quite certain what he is running for. glenn-beck

In August of 2009, Beck told his audiences in town hall meetings on health care, that the Obama administration had plans that should that "should horrify America . . . particularly if you're elderly, handicapped or have a very, very young child." In his typical hackneyed version of history, both inaccurate and revisionist, Beck connected Woodrow Wilson, the progressive, with the Nazi eugenic experiments and German scientist's attempt at a master race. He went on: "The builder of the master race was only part of the problem in Germany, made possible after they began to devalue life. They tried to figure out how much is a life worth, and put a price on how much each individual was worth -- and some were worth more than others."

Beck explained to his flock - without the slightest supporting facts- that Obama and his advisors favored health care rationing and then, bringing in allegations made by Sarah Palin about Obama and death panels, capping it with "so bureaucrats could decide who was worthy to live."

This isn't any thing new for Beck. Besides his tours, he delivers the same message (or something similarly outrageous) every day on his radio talk show or on his TV show.

When Beck equates the president's policies with Nazi eugenics, it's perfectly acceptable. And it's perfectly acceptable to pound that lie into the public's head day after day. But when a Democrat mentions this Big Lie approach, made famous by the Nazis, then suddenly it becomes a nasty attack on the Republicans.

A little research shows that Congressman Cohen had it slightly wrong however. It was not Joseph Goebbels who coined the phrase, "the big lie." It was Hitler himself in his book "Mein Kampf." Here is the relevant passage: the big lie there is always a certain force of credibility; because the broad masses of a nation are always more easily corrupted in the deeper strata of their emotional nature than consciously or voluntarily; and thus in the primitive simplicity of their minds they more readily fall victims to the big lie than the small lie, since they themselves often tell small lies in little matters but would be ashamed to resort to large-scale falsehoods.

It would never come into their heads to fabricate colossal untruths, and they would not believe that others could have the impudence to distort the truth so infamously. Even though the facts which prove this to be so may be brought clearly to their minds, they will still doubt and waver and will continue to think that there may be some other explanation. For the grossly impudent lie always leaves traces behind it, even after it has been nailed down, a fact which is known to all expert liars in this world and to all who conspire together in the art of lying. These people know only too well how to use falsehood for the basest purposes.

Congressman Cohen's words seem fairly appropriate, after all. "The Big Lie" is not merely an untruth that is repeated every day but it is some distortion so monumentally large that the idea that it could be false is beyond the capacity of simple minds to imagine. To take an example for Orwell, Peace is War. Freedom is slavery and Ignorance is Power .

Why, apart from fear-mongering and sensationalism, does Fox News constantly compare the left and progressives with the Nazis? Let me know what's your best theory.


Monsanto confirmed they will not be advertising on Glenn Beck’s show in the future. In statements sent to the StopBeck effort, Monsanto advised:

“We purchased ad time via the local cable company – but not that specific program.”

Addressing our request that Monsanto refrain from advertising on Glenn Beck’s show going forward, Monsanto’s spokesperson added:

“We’ve verified that there are no additional ads scheduled for the Glenn Beck show. The show is not in our future media schedule.”

Good news happens every day.. but you sometimes have to search for it.

Looking Over His Shoulder

It's always to hear good news for a change. I am not sure whether this is true or not but it still gives me a warm feeling.

5 Feb 2011 ... GENEVA (Reuters)Former President George W. Bush has canceled a visit to Switzerland, where he was to address a Jewish charity gala, due to the risk of legal action against him for alleged torture, rights groups said on Saturday.

Bush was to be the keynote speaker at Keren Hayesod’s annual dinner on February 12 in Geneva. But pressure has been building on the Swiss government to arrest him and open a criminal investigation if he enters the Alpine country.

Criminal complaints against Bush alleging torture have been lodged in Geneva, court officials say.

Well, it was to be expected, wasn't it?.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Melanie Einzig

Photographs arrest time and it is a good thing because time is a criminal. -

If you enjoyed this artist's work, there's more of her work online at

Shocking Death of the Dancer

171234_defne-joy-fosterThe Turkish entertainment world was shocked to learn Wednesday of the death of a famous TV host, and actress, 31-year-old Defne Joy Foster. Up until last week, Foster appeared in a popular dance contest show, based roughly on "Dancing with the Stars" but had been eliminated only the week before. For a rundown on what is presently known- and there's a lot of remaining questions, I think- click at the link below. Here is an excerpt:

..reports said she might have died due to excessive alcohol consumption. The house in the Kadıköy district where she died was the house of Kerem Altan, the son of Taraf daily Editor-in Chief Ahmet Altan. News reports said Foster was out on Tuesday night at a bar in Taksim with Altan and the two friends later went to Altan’s house. After a while, Foster lost consciousness.

Altan tried to help her, but was unable to do so and left the house to call a doctor. When he came back, he found that Foster was dead. Police and paramedics rushed to the house at the news that she had died. Ahmet Altan and Foster’s husband, İlker Yasin Solmaz, also went to the house. Police reportedly found asthma medication in Foster’s bag.

Until more information arises as to the cause of death, the circumstances remain mysterious. On the surface, attributing her death to asthma seems peculiar since she was engaged in strenuous dance routines without much detectable problem. Additionally, that particular show regularly scheduled its contestants to dance three routines on each show. Hardly what one would expect from a person who suffered from any kind of health problem. Wasn't any kind of health examination or vetting process?

As a result of her death, the popular show has been thrown into turmoil. The high-rating show's producer, Acun Illicali, has not yet decided whether to continue with the contest or to stop the show and is holding meeting with his media company to decide.

Foster's sudden tragic death cuts short a promising career. With her lively personality and mile-a minute wit, she was a unique personality on Turkish television. With both American and Turkish parents, Foster combined the best of both cultures and she will be missed.


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Love Letters Straight from My Heart

Charlie Manson
California corrections officials have not commented on reports of a letter allegedly smuggled from Corcoran State Prison written by pint-sized cult leader and conspirator-killer, Charles Manson to failed Republican vice-presidential candidate and half-term Alaskan governor, Sarah Palin. Manson, serving a life sentence, was convicted of conspiracy to commit murder in what came to be known as the "Tate-La Bianca case", named after the victims. He was not accused of committing the murders in person.
Charles Manson to Sarah Palin  
Dear Ms. Sarah,
I suppose you know who I am and what I am accused of doing to end up in this prison. If you do, you must also know that I am a victim just like you. I am accused of something I never did do. (Tate-LaBianca) How can I be guilty of doing anything wrong. But I got blamed like you got blamed.
(By the way, I love that creative use of "blood libel." You can't imagine how tickled it made me. So cute!! )
Like you says, each individual is accountable for his actions. Acts of monstrous criminality stand on their own. They begin and end with the criminals who commit them. You and I must have read the same books!
I have killed no one and I have ordered no one to be killed. I never laid a finger on any of the people that were killed, so how can I be held responsible for anything done in my NAME?
By nature I like to see the positive things in this world but sometimes Life is so unfair. I am sure you know how I feel. Except I am sitting here in my cell and you are planning to run for president. BTW Good luck, Ms. Sarah!! HA HA
I hope when you do get to be president and you are sitting in your nice chair with lots of servants and whatever in the White House, you will remember your Uncle Charlie. I will be eligible for another parole hearing in 2012 which is a hint if you are thinking of buying me a Christmas present. Ha! I hope you will consider a full pardon to right this injustice done to me. I hope someday to walk the streets freely again and pick up where I left off.
Give my regards to your family, esp. to your pretty little girls.
Your kindred spirit
Charles Milles Manson
Inmate# B33920
Corcoran State Prison
California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation

The handwritten letter is considered, by some, to be an elaborate hoax. "Utter nonsense. It's obviously some kind of prank." said one unnamed prison official.

'So how is Sarah anything like that?"
Others have aggressively rejected the premise of the letter itself. "It's infuriating to compare Palin with Manson. I blame the sensationalist news media for this," said Psychiatrist Heidi Clare from the University of Maryland. "Doctors who examined Manson when he was a young man said that he had 'a tremendous drive to call attention to himself. Generally he is unable to succeed in positive acts, therefore he often resorts to negative behavior to satisfy this drive.' So how is Sarah anything like that?"
"On the contrary," Clare adds, "expert manipulators often vacillate between the role of a hostile bully and pathetic victim. It's just another tool in their toolbox, that's all. I think it's a bit of an exaggeration to compare her with Charles Manson. At least for the moment."
UPDATE: Rumors of the Osama Love Video to Sarah Palin are hoaxes. 

Disclaimer: Nomadic View blog is not a news organization, fair and balanced or otherwise. Its posts are designed for the entertainment of its readers and should not in any way be a source of authentic and accurate information.
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Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The CD of the Month–February 2011

Each month, this blog will feature a new CD of quality music. The player and playlist are on the sidebar for easy listening. You find information on purchasing here. MagnaTune, which sponsors the playlist, is certainly worth a check and provides an alternative to the music corporation model for music promotion and delivery.

Beth Quist New Moon

Beth Quist's latest album, New Moon, draws from all her influences covering many genres. The album journey begins more in the West, travels through quiet pensive landscapes & driving percussive tunes, then ends with a traditional Turkish song. Beth's signature soaring 4-octave soprano vocals weave throughout. High tech samples are blended with ancient acoustic instruments like hammered dulcimer & Persian daff. Beth plays all the instruments except cello/track 8: James Hoskins, & doumbek/track 2: Nathan Good.

In the years since Beth released her last solo album she's flown 65 feet in the air with Cirque du Soliel, toured Europe & played Carnegie Hall with Bobby McFerrin. Now she has finally found a supportive space to create & record in the remote CO mountains. Beth is psyched & grateful to have the opportunity to share her solo music with all who are interested & supportive.


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