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2008mar01. I just happened to run across a photo of the buck-toothed tiki leaving Trader Vic’s warehouse ...

2008mar02. Excerpts from Um ... Slips, Stumbles, and Verbal Blunders, and What They Mean by Michael Erard.

Transcribers at the Federal News Service in Washington, D.C., encounter bucketloads of verbal blunders every weekday morning. [ ... ] The transcripts have to be readable, so the transcribers generally clean up people’s speaking, as instructed by an in-house style guide that cautions, “Don’t type ‘um,’ ‘ah,’ ‘er,’ or partial words.” The style guide also stipulates that transcribers should “clean up a false start or starts consisting of only one or two words if the omission of the words does not affect the meaning.” There is one exception to those rules: “DO NOT clean up major policymakers, including the president,” the style guide says, “since not only what they say but how they say it often makes the news.” [pg 1]

People around the world fill pauses in their own languages as naturally as watermelons have seeds. In Britain they say “uh” but spell it “er,” just as they pronounce the “er” of “butter” (“buttah”). (footnote: If you actually pronounce “er,” you’re saying it incorrectly – there’s no pause filler with an “r” sound. People who do say it have been influenced by the British spelling of the word, in which the final “r” is silent) The French say something that sounds like euh, and Hebrew speakers say ehhh. Serbs and Croats say ovay, and the Turks say mmmm. In Dutch you can say uh and um, in German äh and ähm. In Swedish it’s eh, ah, aaah, m, mm, hmm, ooh, a, and oh; in Norwegian, e, eh, m, and hm. According to the William Levelt, a Dutch speech scientist, “uh” is the only word that’s universal across languages. [pg 55]

If you find yourself saying “um,” he suggested converting it into a slow “yum,” to make yourself more conscious of what you’re saying. “When you start hearing yourself go ‘um,’” Glickstein recommended, “start saying ’yum,’ and turn your ‘ums’ to ‘yums, um, umm, yummm, mmmm, mmmm.’” [pg 113]

Indeed, some elocution books taught myriad methods of disciplining the body, now mostly forgotten: illustrations showing the beauty of holding the left hand to the forehead, clasping both hands to the chest, turning the wrist and ankle just so. [pg 120]

Robert West, in his radio handbook, So-o-o-o You’re Going on the Air!, called the preelectric orators “leather-lunged word hurlers who depended on stentorian power to carry their voices to three counties at one time.” Once electromagnetism displaced sound waves in the air as the vehicle of the voice, the elocutionary standards of the nineteenth century were rendered obsolete. The elocution manuals had provided elaborate instructions about when to pause and how long to do it. It was a mechanical necessity – the orators needed a space in which to take a breath. Yet that same pause may have given the speaker a moment to plan what to say next. When the need to project the voice disappeared, so did the luxury of the pause. In this way the utilitarian pauses of oratory might have become the useless hesitations of the electrically amplified public speaker. It was in these hesitant moments that the “ums” are likely to have been spoken and recognized. [pg 130]

Some sound artists have produced pieces editing out words and leaving only disfluencies, laughter, throat clearing, and other vocal marginalia. The Books, an electronic folk group, have a fifty-five-second piece called “ps,” and the Seattle-based composer, David Hahn, turned a recorded interview between a journalist and a CEO into a piece called “Corporate Coitus.” Hahn used the “ums” and “uhs” as “compositional building blocks” to create a piece with the crescendos of sexual intercourse. [pg 139]

Otherwise, how can speakers be made more fluent – more umless? If people have to pay money for each “uh” or “um,” repeated word, or interrupted sentence, their fluency will increase. Verbal reprimands help. So do electric shocks. [pg 141]

The use of “um” and “uh” is a tactic of speakers who are speaking self-consciously, argue Christenfeld and a colleague, Beth Creager. They observed drinkers in bars and found that drinking alcohol reduced “um,” though the method is somewhat impractical for everyday use: to become fully umless, a drinker would need to drink nineteen beers. [pg 142]

It appears that every type of spoken disfluency also exists in sign language. In Deaf culture, slips of the hand are opportunities to make a joke or feel embarrassed, and signers who often fill their pauses are considered distracted. To make the sign for “um” in American Sign Language, hold your dominant hand in front of you, palm facing up, your five fingers slightly apart. Now circle your forearm away from you and return it, repeating the gesture. [pg 142]

Around 414 BCE, the early rhetorician Gorgias warned that speech could charm, like witchcraft. It also worked like a drug, creating emotions in listeners that they couldn’t control. “For just as different drugs dispel different secretions ... so also in the case of speeches, some distress, others delight, some cause fear, others make the hearer bold, and some drug and bewitch the soul with a kind of evil persuasion.” [pg 149]

“Today’s American audiences want information in an entertainment package,” Brooks added. In Europe and Asia, adults don’t need a stand-up comedy routine to be tricked into learning. “In Europe, you can stand behind a lectern and read from notes and most people will like it,” he says. “I spoke at Volvo once in Sweden and when it was all over, they said, “We like you. You’re not a typical American speaker. You have knowledge, and you can give it to us in a format that’s not an over-the-top style.’ An American style is not a compliment – that means you’re showy, and preachy, but light on content.” [pg 161]

2008mar04. Airborne® settlement. I called it! Oh just let me have my shallow little victory. And the money. The money is more important. Doesn’t that domain name sound like some quack 500-acre body-rejuvenating facility built by Kellogg just outside of Battle Creek? “Welcome, chronic masturbators, to my wizonderful Airborne Health Settlement!”

2008mar04. Ironic Sans: Courtroom sketch artists.

2008mar07. Achewood: An afternoon with Molly Sanders.

2008mar08. Telecom Immunity: Barebones Congressional Felony. Wiki: Ex post facto law. Thomas Jefferson:

“The sentiment that ex post facto laws are against natural right is so strong in the United States, that few, if any, of the State constitutions have failed to proscribe them. The federal constitution indeed interdicts them in criminal cases only; but they are equally unjust in civil as in criminal cases, and the omission of a caution which would have been right, does not justify the doing what is wrong. Nor ought it to be presumed that the legislature meant to use a phrase in an unjustifiable sense, if by rules of construction it can be ever strained to what is just.” (Letter to Isaac McPherson, August 13th, 1813)

The exciting thing about being an American right now are the amazing history lessons, as you probe deeper and deeper into the Constitution, to learn about this law or that as this administration quickly throws it into the woodchipper. Christ, 1813! That’s not that long ago. Anyone have his cellphone #? I’ll text him in code. “EFFYJAY EWAY AREWAY UCKEDFAY ELPHAY”

2008mar10. The detective novel of Lost Springs WY.

2008mar11. MTV holocaust “warning” subway | house. Okay, I’ll take a whack at it. It has nothing to do with this considered future. It’s “hey, you know, what happened back then, they were people like you as well.” I’ve seen a smattering of comments that this is supposed to be some sort of prescient warning from Viacom, Inc. I gotta stop reading comments. As a self-aware comment once read, “nothing good can come of reading comments.”

2008mar11. Harper’s: The Next Bubble. There’s going to be enough chumps to jump on the stock market train after ~five years of US insolvency? Okay. I’ll wave to all y’all from the station.

2008mar12. With my patented Detect-O-Bar (shown at the top of the home page), I can tell at a glance if you’re running the beta of Firefox 3 or not. Try it! [FX: hands you 3-D glasses]


2008mar14. When Belief in the System Fades.

In a way, a belief in the value, transparency, trust and reciprocity of the System is like a religious belief. The converts, the true believers, are the ones who work like crazy for the company, or the Force or the firm. And when the veil of illusion is tugged from their eyes, then the Believer does a reversal, and becomes a devout non-believer in the System. He or she drops out, moves to a lower position, or “retires” to some lower level of employment.

Special thanks to Cardhouse Reader #7a for this link.

2008mar14. Friday! Free! Day!

The Bird and the Bee: Polite Dance Song (that’s three!).
Musical PSAs. Meatloaf, Wendy O Williams, etc.
Star Wars opening sequence by Saul Bass.
Apeonaut: Kill Them In The Face. An album.
Cat of 1000 Faces.
“I have to go pee.” "Well, it’s your funeral.”
Ah. The Daily Mail sent someone up to explore that tantalizing urination non-possibility.
Elyse Sewell appeared on America’s Next Top Model Which I Didn’t/Don’t Watch but she’s one snappy gal – world-travelling, trying the food with gusto, taking pix of (among other things) grocery store products and of the bizarro-land costumery she’s paid to endure.
qdb: FLYING HIGH NOW [via doc]
Cheeta celebrates his 75th birthday. Cheeta appeared in the Tarzan films of the 30s and 40s and is the world’s oldest living primate. 76 comin’ up.

2008mar14. Mail.

i want to see japan

I advise you, from experience, to skip the part where you grow a travel spine and just do it. The dollar is tanking, a year from now you’ll be kicking yourself. Spend those little freaks, get some value from them before they melt. But don’t forget to book a hotel for your first night. They don’t like it when you show up unannounced with nowhere to sleep. Skeeves ‘em out. Just do it. Get on a freaking plane and freaking go already. Race you.

2008mar15. Normally when the radio show wraps up there’s a sort of an undiscussed movement toward a closing statement, or a good random hook. I usually bail a little bit earlier because I don’t want to end up with the last word and I like to break down the laptop early because afterward? Do-nuts. This week, the person who followed our show wasn’t going to show up, so they were going to cut to a pre-recorded program.

Collectively, no one knew/remembered. So there we all were, chattering away, when someone came in to tell us we’d automatically been dumped off the air five minutes ago.

In 50 years, scholars will ruminate over what amazing pearls of wisdom were mouth-released during this unfortunately un-aired segment. Especially from me. Pearls from me. You missed my pearls, America.

2008mar16. So I had this silly plan for a 120sqft sandbag dome domicile, had it all kitted out and applianced in my feverish mind. 120 being the typical lower-end for a city’s heinous permit process to begin dictating exactly where you place that fucking grommet and you better put in a stove because the stove lobby paid us off. I already miss the place, I just know the ladies would have went wild for it ... “it’s cute and sustainable ... and in today’s ragged economy, that’s so prudent and wise!” [SFX: smooch smooch smooch smooch smooch smooch smooch smooch smooch smooch] But it ain’t happenin’. No, ladies, don’t go ... UltraJenga?

Speaking of the economy, why is it that no one’s started a bank death pool? Might as well have fun while we can (“I’m a puttin’ a hunnerd pre-de-valued bucks on Carlyle Group for Wednesday ... no, Citibank!”). Maybe I’m just not reading the right weblogs. [FX: cancels I Can Has Dungburger: Best of LOLbeetles]

2008mar16. “What about now?”-type excerpts from Hard Times, An Oral History of the Great Depression (1970) by Studs Terkel.

Lily, 18: I think we’d hurt more now if we had a Depression. You don’t see how they’d make it if it happened to ‘em again. Because they take a lot of things for granted. I mean, you see ‘em now and they have everything. You can’t imagine how they would act if they didn’t have it. If they would even remember what they did. ‘Cause they’re past it now. They already done it, and they figure they’re over it. If we fell now, I think everybody would take it a lot harder. ¶ Everybody’d step on each other. They’d just walk all over and kill each other. They got more than they ever need that they’d just step on anybody to keep it. They got cars, they got houses, they got this and that. It’s more than they need, but they think they need it, so they want to keep it. Human life isn’t as important as what they got. [pg 23]

Dr. David J. Rossman, psychiatrist: Now people think it’s coming to them. The whole ethos has changed. There is a great deal more hatred and free-floating aggression all over the country. We have reached unprecedented prosperity. Everybody says “Why not me?” The affluent society has made itself known to people ... how the better half lives. It’s put on television, you can see it. And everybody says, “Who the hell are they? What’s the matter with me? My skin is black, so what?” You don’t accept responsibility for your own fate. It’s the other fellow who is to blame. It’s terrible. It could tear our country apart. [If Depression ... revolution?] It would be an inchoate affair. It wouldn’t be as organized. ¶ Today nobody is permitted to starve. Now they think it’s coming to them. As a matter of fact, it was the government that brought this idea to the people, in the Thirties. The people didn’t ask the government. They ask the question they can’t answer themselves: Why am I the goat? Why me? They want the pie in the sky ... [pg 81]

Robert Langston, 43, jazz singer: I think it could. But it would behoove the Federal Government not to let it come. Because you’re dealing with a different breed of cat now. If they really want anarchy, let a Depression come now. My sixteen-year-old son is not the person I was when I was sixteen. He has manly responsibilities. And he doesn’t want any shit. When I was sixteen, I wasn’t afraid to die. But the kid, sixteen now, is not afraid to kill. [pg 92]

Julia Walther: I don’t know. I’ve been told it can never happen again. However, there is one thing that does trouble me. I went to Germany in ’34 and ’38. I saw what Nazism did. I was troubled by Americans saying: “But this could never happen with us. The Germans are a strange people with whom we have nothing in common – beasts.” I knew this wasn’t true. This kind of thing can happen any place, given certain circumstances ... ¶ There was a terrible depression in Germany. Along comes a man who tells them they’re a great nation, all they have to do is believe in themselves and follow him. He promised them the sun, the moon and the stars. The German intellectuals and comedians made fun of him and the Nazis in their night clubs. I heard one in the Platzl in Munich. The audience loved it, adored it. But it didn’t stop Nazism. They won over the lower middle classes ... ¶ The Depression overwhelmed us, yes. It was terrible. But we had hope: This is not going to kill us. I don’t think people can say that nowadays. If a Depression came now, I’d be afraid, terribly afraid ... [pg 164]

Sally Rand: I truly believe we shall have another Depression. I think people will just go out and take what they need. I don’t think there will be any more people queueing up on bread lines waiting to be fed by charity, God damn it. I’m not condoning this, but we’ve let it happen. Take the television. It isn’t food they’re hungry for now, it’s a different kind of food. Not only the Negroes. All the poor. ¶ The middle class look upon the deprived smugly: the poor we’ll have with us always. Oh yeah? [pg 174]

Doc Graham, self-described con/heist man: Very simple. They’d commit suicide today. I don’t think they’re conditioned to stand it. We were a hardier race then. We’d win wars. We didn’t procrastinate. We’d win them or lose them. Today we’re a new race of people. They’ll quit on a draw – if they see any feasible way to see their way out to quit with any dignity, they’ll quit. Back then, you had a different breed of people. You got $21 a month going into the army or the navy. So them guys, they went to win the war. There’s been an emancipated woman since the beginning of the war, also. [pg 186]

Dr. Nathan Ackerman, psychiatrist: I think a depression today would have a paradoxical effect, at least temporarily. Political upheaval, on one hand -- and bringing people closer together, on the other. Greater consideration for one another. Something like the quality of caring in London during the blitz. Everybody’s suffering was everybody’s concern. They drew together and gave each other solace. [pg 197]

Edward Santander, director of adult education at a small Midwestern college: If we had a severe depression today – I’m basically an optimist -- I don’t think this country would survive. Many people today are rootless. When you have this rootlessness, we’re talking about Germany of the Twenties. You’d see overt dictatorship take over. You would see your camps ... [pg 210]

Harry Terrell: But I can see a Depression ahead right now. If we go to pot, it would make that one look like a Sunday school picnic. A Depression today would cut deep, quick. Today, in the machine age, like everything – it would be sudden. ¶ In the Thirties, my sister’s family lived on their own production. They had gardens, they had eggs, they had flocks of chickens. Now the eggs are all produced in these large establishments. Machines turn out thousands of dozens. Then, they had their own and were more self-sufficient. Today, the milk is supplied by the same company that supplies this dining room here. They didn’t have money to buy new clothes or cars or machinery. But they had enough to keep body and soul together. Today, the money would be gone. They wouldn’t have the food ... [pg 216]

Dorothy Day: Another Depression might be a relief to many people. They know our prosperity is built on war. It might be so much better than war. People won’t have to keep up a front any longer. They wouldn’t have to keep up the payments any more. There would have to be a moratorium. The threat of Depression is nothing to worry about. I wish to goodness the stock market would collapse for good and for all. I’d like to see a nonviolent revolution take place and an end to this Holy War ... [pg 306]

2008mar16. Mail.

I found new Blog whith sexy photo and video about free movie [url shoved] shyla stylez. Enjoy!

The exciting thing about this spammy email was that the location field was populated with the following string: “Iran, Moscow.” I have never been there. I am easily amused by self-contradictory geographical references.

2008mar16. Let’s wrap this thing up already ... okay, that small, teeny-tiny minority obsessed with ramping up fascism, putting some exciting new make-up on the pig etc, give us one last hit of your hilarious flailings. BLORTCH HAHAHAHAHAH Oh man, that was good. This achievement has been noted in your permanent record. Now, if you’ll please step into the shuttle with the rest of your misguided fleshwastes, the countdown is beginning for your journey to the stars!

2008mar18. Palast: the skinny on the bail-out and Spitzer.

Then, on Wednesday of this week, the unthinkable happened. Carlyle Capital went bankrupt. Who? That’s Carlyle as in Carlyle Group. James Baker, Senior Counsel. Notable partners, former and past: George Bush, the Bin Laden family and more dictators, potentates, pirates and presidents than you can count.

2008mar20. Well now. Thirteen years. It was this very day in 1995 when Lou-Anne went to the back of the woodshed and started up the generator. Why would someone do this, for 13 years even? I think they’re nuts. I have no idea when it went from a static home page that had changing messages of lofty un-usefulness to some sort of date-based holding bin filled with crabbing, and I just decided I no longer care, there. A really horribly old weblog and $3.72 will get you a cup of gas these days and that’s not including the cute li’l dollop of creme on top. Oh how we’ll laugh in the line for the ticket for the ticket for the bread line. Riiiight ... the inception of this e-blight. [SFX: clears throat] I hereby pronounce this anniversary to be AWESOME! LUCKY THIRTEEN!

i heard these things were laced man

2008mar21. Friday: Actually Free?

Ad for some vodka thing w/Tim Eric Zach.
Tim & Eric: IM Love. Hot hot hot hot hot hot hot hot hot hot hot
TED: Dave Eggers.
Jerry likes his new ball toy.
Zero Punctuation: Turok.
Money as Debt [47min]. Learn what your money actually is the E-Z cartoon way.
The Extreme UltraKing. That’s 120 square feet. I could live in that footprint.

2008mar21. Mail.

Concerning the Trader Joe’s brand of “Rice Dream” does it have kosher cerification? If so please foward the name of the cetifying agency. You can also fax certification to [name] at [phone number]. Thank you.

The answer ... may surprise you.

2008mar22. So there I was, walking along under the covered archway of strip mall #913589a, passing this young metrosexual in tiger-attacked jeans and a t-shirt. No one else around. As I’m passing him, he kicks back his head and plaintively moans, “Ohhhh, I want to go tanning ... ” A part of me wanted to turn to him and say “I’m not your sugar daddy, sweetie.” Perhaps he hadn’t noticed I was passing him at the time, you know how the youth are so self-absorbed. When GDep2 rolls in, we will eat them.

We will eat them.

2008mar23. LA casting for Human Tetris. [via april winchell]

2008mar25. This is a repeat: Money as Debt. It’s 47 minutes, and that’s why you didn’t watch it. “I don’t have tiiiiiiiIiiMMMMME for it,” you whined between Botox® injections. Well, I’m telling you – just watch the first fifteen minutes. Then you’ll be dragged into it ... you’ll keep saying to yourself, “wait ... what? It can’t get any more worse than that ... oh god ... ” We are all trapped in a collaborative fiction involving little green pieces of paper. Now, going to the store and buying a Moon Pie becomes a surreal one-act play of hilarity. “Okay, I’m going pass some debt along to you, and you’re going to give me food for it. Sound good? Great.”

I found the quotes from the film here along with additonal urls, and additional quotes. I’m just excerpting the quotes below.

“Since I entered politics, I have chiefly had men’s views confided to me privately. Some of the biggest men in the United States, in the Field of commerce and manufacture, are afraid of something. They know that there is a power somewhere so organized, so subtle, so watchful, so interlocked, so complete, so pervasive, that they better not speak above their breath when they speak in condemnation of it.” -- Woodrow Wilson, The New Freedom (1913)

“Each and every time a bank makes a loan (or purchases securities), new bank credit is created – new deposits – brand new money.” -- Graham F. Towers, Director, Bank of Canada

“The process by which banks create money is so simple the mind is repelled.” -- John Kenneth Galbraith, Economist

“Permit me to issue and control the money of a nation, and I care not who makes its laws.” -- Mayer Amschel Rothschild, International Banker

“I am afraid that the ordinary citizen will not like to be told that banks can and do create money ... And they who control the credit of the nation direct the policy of Governments and hold in the hollow of their hands the destiny of the people” – Reginald McKenna, past Chairman of the Board, Midlands Bank of England

“Thus, our national circulating medium is now at the mercy of loan transactions of banks, which lend, not money, but promises to supply money they do not possess.” -- Irving Fisher, economist and author

“That is what our money system is. If there were no debts in our money system, there wouldn’t be any money.” – Marriner S. Eccles, Chairman and Governor of the Federal Reserve Board

“Everyone sub-consciously knows banks do not lend money. When you draw on your savings account, the bank doesn’t tell you you can’t do this because it has lent the money to somebody else.” – Mark Mansfield

“If all the bank loans were paid, no one could have a bank deposit, and there would not be a dollar of coin or currency in circulation. This is a staggering thought. We are completely dependent on the commercial banks. Someone has to borrow every dollar we have in circulation, cash, or credit. If the banks create ample synthetic money we are prosperous; if not, we starve. We are absolutely without a permanent money system. When one gets a complete grasp of the picture, the tragic absurdity of our hopeless situation is almost incredible – but there it is.” – Robert Hemphill. Credit Manager, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta

“One thing to realize about our fractional reserve banking system is that, like a child’s game of musical chairs, as long as the music is playing, there are no losers.” -- Andrew Gause, Monetary Historian

“The greatest shortcoming of the human race is our inability to understand the exponential function.” -- Albert A. Bartlett, physicist

“Anyone who believes exponential growth can go on forever in a finite world is either a madman or an economist” – Kenneth Boulding, economist

“I have never yet had anyone who could, through the use of logic and reason, justify the Federal Government borrowing the use of its own money ... I believe the time will come when people will demand that this be changed. I believe the time will come in this country when they will actually blame you and me and everyone else connected with the Congress for sitting idly by and permitting such an idiotic system to continue.” – Congressman Wright Patman (in office 1929-1976)

“Money is a new form of slavery, and distinguishable from the old simply by the fact that it is impersonal, that there is no human relation between master and slave.” – Leo (Lev) Tolstoy

“None are more enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.” – Goethe

“The modern banking system manufactures money out of nothing. The process is perhaps the most astounding piece of sleight of hand that was ever invented. ¶ Banking was conceived in iniquity and born in sin. Bankers own the Earth. Take it away from them, but leave them the power to create money, and with the flick of the pen they will create enough money to buy it back again ... ¶ Take this great power away from them and all great fortunes like mine will disappear, and they ought to disappear, for then this would be a better and happier world to live in. But if you want to continue to be slaves of the banks and pay the cost of your own slavery, then let bankers continue to create money and control credit.” -- Sir Josiah Stamp Director, Bank of England 1928-1941 (reputed to be the 2nd richest man in Britain at the time)

“The inability of the Colonists to get power to issue their own money permanently out of the hands of George III and the international bankers was the PRIME reason for the revolutionary war.” -- Benjamin Franklin

“I am a most unhappy man. I have unwittingly ruined my country. A great industrial nation is controlled by its system of credit. Our system of credit is concentrated. The growth of the nation, therefore, and all our activities are in the hands of a few men. We have come to be one of the worst ruled, one of the most completely controlled and dominated Governments in the civilized world, no longer a Government by free opinion, no longer a Government by conviction and the vote of the majority, but a Government by the opinion and duress of a small group of dominant men.” -- Woodrow Wilson

“All of the perplexities, confusion, and distress in America arises, not from the defects of the Constitution or Confederation, not from want of honor or virtue, so much as from downright ignorance of the nature of coin, credit, and circulation.” -- John Adams, Founding Father of the American Constitution

“Whoever controls the volume of money in our country is absolute master of all industry and commerce ... and when you realize that the entire system is very easily controlled, one way or another, by a few powerful men at the top, you will not have to be told how periods of inflation and depression originate.” -- James A. Garfield, assassinated president of the United States

“The Government should create, issue, and circulate all the currency and credits needed to satisfy the spending power of the Government and the buying power of consumers. By the adoption of these principles, the taxpayers will be saved immense sums of interest. The privilege of creating and issuing money is not only the supreme prerogative of government, but it is the government’s greatest creative opportunity.” -- Abraham Lincoln, assassinated president of the United States

“Once a nation parts with the control of its currency and credit, it matters not who makes the nations laws. Usury, once in control, will wreck any nation. Until the control of the issue of currency and credit is restored to government and recognised as its most sacred responsibility, all talk of the sovereignty of parliament and of democracy is idle and futile.” -- William Lyon Mackenzie King

“We are grateful to the Washington Post, the New York Times, Time magazine and other great publications whose directors have attended our meetings and respected the promises of discretion for almost forty years. It would have been impossible for us to develop our plan for the world if we had been subject to the bright lights of publicity during those years. But, the world is now more sophisticated and prepared to march towards a world-government. The supranational sovereignty of an intellectual elite and world bankers is surely preferable to the National auto-determination practiced in past centuries” -- David Rockefeller in an address to a Trilateral Commission meeting in June of 1991

“Only the small secrets need to be protected. The big ones are kept secret by public incredulity.” Alternately quoted as: “Only puny secrets need protection. Big discoveries are protected by public incredulity.” -- Marshall McLuhan, media guru

2008mar26. Kamen’s Slingshot. Get it down to a grand, and you can hook it up to your shower. You can keep showering with the same water over and over. Heck, hook it up to your sewage line right before it hits the municipal line.


2008mar28. Got accosted for shoplifting today at a grocery market. It would have helped to actually have been shoplifting at the time. I think this means I get a freebie at the store at a later date. I’m a-gonna jam jam down my pants, shanghai Shanghai-fried noodles, pocket Hot Pockets, steal steel-cut oats, purloin loin, poach salmon, pilfer pilaf, boost Boost, take sake, swipe tripe, crib crab.

2008mar29. Some corrections to the Money as Debt entry. First, mail from Doc:

that rothschild line might be one of those quotations that has no source. it was popularized by early-to-mid-20th-century anti-semites, and i know i’ve never seen a source for it. one thing that makes it suspicious to me is that it’s a little too on the nose. another thing is that it’s cast in the exact same form as other spurious quotations attributed to plato, stalin, & others re: music, movies, &c.

Yeah, I think I was probably looking up the Wilson quotes roughly the same time you noticed that; the entry for Freedom to Fascism on Wikipedia indicates at least one of them has been puffed up with air. There’s a discussion of the film on Metafilter. The basic explanation is sound, but unfortunately they didn’t put much time into checking the quotes. Finally, Moon Pies are not actually classified as “food” and should not be referred to as such. They are edible chemical substances coated and sealed with a colored outer shell -- Pantone® PMS 11005 (“Banana”), PMS 11314 (“Chocolate”), and PMS 11023 (“Vanilla”). Enjoy.

2008mar31. The sad story of the chimp who thought he was a boy.

When they like you, they’re extremely gregarious. They want to show you things. They love books and magazines. There was a children’s book all about Nim while he was in New York, basically a photo book, and Nim kept his one copy of this book safe, even though chimps tend to wreck everything. He would bring it down and show the other chimps, then bring it back to his bunk and keep it under his sleeping area so that no one could destroy it. He would just look at pictures of his New York City family, and himself, over and over again.

Unfortunately it’s at Salon, which wants to set a cookie. They’re still stuck in 1999. So: ALLOW COOKIE | READ ARTICLE | DISALLOW COOKIE ... whatever, Salon.

Book: Animals in Translation Book: Pranks! Book: Adrift - 76 Days Lost At Sea Book: Secret Language of Sleep Book: Consider the Lobster