Saturday, February 27, 2010


Last night, here in Southern California, as we heard the news from Chile and narcissistically wondered where the next seismic event would occur and what the tectonic plates would do in the immediate future, we were also alerted by the eminent Munz to Alexander Cockburn’s argument that the recent killer whale problems at Sea World are essentially an orca slave revolt. I don’t always see eye to eye with Cockburn but here he makes a compelling case...

"Call him, just for now, Spartacus. He was two years old when the slavers captured him in 1982 and hauled him off to Oak Bay, near the town of Victoria, on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, in the far Canadian west. And there he met his fellow slaves, Nootka and Haida. Day after day, in slave school they learned their tricks. Day after day, they did their act for the paying customers. And then, on February 20, 1991, in the tank operated by Sealand of the Pacific, the three struck back at their captors. Okay, not Spartacus, but an orca whale – Tillikum, the one who drowned 40-year-old Dawn Brancheau last Wednesday in the Shamu tank, at SeaWorld, Orlando, after grabbing her by her ponytail. Tillikum was caught off Iceland. Nootka and Haida, both females, were seized in the Pacific. In fact, Nootka was the third orca by that name to be bought by Sealand. The first two died within a year of their capture. At that time, enslaved orcas had a life expectancy in captivity of anywhere from one to four years. These days they do a bit better. In wild waters, orcas live to be anywhere from 30 to 60. By the time of the 1991 slave revolt, Nootka III already had a couple of priors back in 1989, when she’d attacked trainers twice. Then, on Feb. 20, 1991, Keltie Byrne, a 20-year-old marine biology student, champion swimmer and part-time trainer, slipped while she was riding on the head of one of the orcas. Tillikum, Nootka and Haida took turns in dragging her beyond reach of trainers trying to hook her out with long poles.” (Click here for the rest.)


A human tribe that has survived for 65,000 years finally became extinct, the end result of a process started by the colonial British. No mention of it occures in the media and I would never have known and felt any twinge of shame had our dear friend Zmyth sent this story. (And even at Doc40 we go rapidly on to the fun and games.)

“The last member of a unique tribe has died on India’s Andaman Islands. Boa Sr, who died last week aged around 85, was the last speaker of ‘Bo’, one of the ten Great Andamanese languages. The Bo are thought to have lived in the Andaman Islands for as much as 65,000 years, making them the descendants of one of the oldest human cultures on Earth. Boa Sr was the oldest of the Great Andamanese, who now number just 52. Originally ten distinct tribes, the Great Andamanese were 5,000 strong when the British colonized the Andaman Islands in 1858. Most were killed or died of diseases brought by the colonizers. Having failed to ‘pacify’ the tribes through violence, the British tried to ‘civilize’ them by capturing many and keeping them in an ‘Andaman Home’. Of the 150 children born in the home, none lived beyond the age of two. The surviving Great Andamanese depend largely on the Indian government for food and shelter, and abuse of alcohol is rife. Boa Sr survived the Asian tsunami of December 2004, and told linguists, ‘We were all there when the earthquake came. The eldest told us ‘the Earth would part, don’t run away or move’. The elders told us, that’s how we know.’” Click here for more.

The secret word is Mourn


Click here for Millie Small (what else can a poor Freudian do?)


Friday, February 26, 2010


The amount of efluent that citizens are expected to swallow from the major banks has, over the last few years, increased beyond all reason. We still remember the Wells Fargo exec who used a foreclosed beach house in Malibu as her personal party pad. But when Citibank – and maybe other major banks for all we know – start conducting totalitarian lifestyle investigations of their customers, and essentially blacklisting anyone whose beliefs and opinions they don’t like, the time for rising up angry has to be at hand. The banks have come close to ruining us all with their insane financial abstractions. They were rewarded with corporate socialism on the taxpayers tab, and now, in their extraordinary arrogance, think they can get in the Big Brother business. I suppose it’s possible the Godlberg got snippy with a bank official but that’s hardly an excuse. The following report is lifted from the excellent World of Wonder

“You can bank on it. Jason Goldberg, founder and CEO of Fabulis, a website geared to gay men, has had his bank account blocked by someone at Citibank after the institution reviewed Goldberg's blog and found that the "content was not in compliance with Citibank’s standard policies." Frustrated, confounded and not a little angry, Goldberg says that "for the life of us we can’t find anything 'objectionable' on our blog besides some good humor, some business insights, and some touching coming out stories from some great and fabulis gay people." Of course, the real question here is why the F is Citibank reviewing customers' blogs for content? An account manager says the review is standard procedure. The bank is currently re-reviewing Goldberg's blog, but the blogger says that no matter what the upshot of that review is, he's switching banks. Follow his blog for developments. You can bank on it. Jason Goldberg, founder and CEO of Fabulis, a website geared to gay men, has had his bank account blocked by someone at Citibank after the institution reviewed Goldberg's blog and found that the "content was not in compliance with Citibank’s standard policies." Frustrated, confounded and not a little angry, Goldberg says that "for the life of us we can’t find anything 'objectionable' on our blog besides some good humor, some business insights, and some touching coming out stories from some great and fabulis gay people." Of course, the real question here is why the F is Citibank reviewing customers' blogs for content? An account manager says the review is standard procedure. The bank is currently re-reviewing Goldberg's blog, but the blogger says that no matter what the upshot of that review is, he's switching banks.” (Click here for more)

Now let’s see if I have a bank account tomorrow.

Click here for Frank Zappa

The word is Gaystapo


If anyone had put an image of George W. Bush on a goddamned comdom they would have been lynched. The wrath of Homeland Security or some other savage fed agency would have fallen on them from a great height. You know it and I know it. Okay so maybe we godless pinkos are more free and easy, and we like a good off-color jest, but for an organization called Graphic Armor to print a picture of Barack Obama on rubbers and call it The Stimulus Pack – “to keep you Barock hard, and safe through hard times” – might seem to be pushing a sniggering and maybe racist envelope. (So to speak.) And that’s not even mentioning health concerns about the ink. Do I want the thing taken off the market? Of course not. Let’s just have some Sarah Palin scumbags (to use an archaic term.) Like, a fairness doctrine in safe sex?


…with his spray on tan, his expensive suits, and dead fish eyes, has the mendacious gall to go on national TV and claim that “America has the best healthcare system in the world” while parents are bankrupted by the cost of treating a sick child and cancer patients fear the cost of treatment. It would hardly matter what this lying fool thinks, except John Boehner is one of this country’s elected leaders. (Open the pod door, HAL. I’m bailing out.)



Thursday, February 25, 2010


Forget the manufactured news stories about the errors in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's 2007 report and all those stolen emails. Focus instead on the scientific consensus that human activity is driving global warming. Studies conducted after the 2007 IPCC report have found that climate change is happening faster than previously expected with maybe more dire consequences than previously projected.

“According to a backgrounder on the latest science by the Union of Concerned Scientists, more carbon dioxide is staying in the atmosphere as the ocean's ability to absorb carbon dioxide has diminished; sea levels are rising faster than the IPCC's best estimate, which was based on an average of several climate models; and the Arctic ice sheet is diminishing more rapidly than scientists expected at the time the IPCC released its 2007 report. The December 2009 "Copenhagen Diagnosis," a report by 26 independent researchers (about half of whom were IPCC authors) based on more than 200 peer-reviewed scientific papers, many of which were published after the IPPC's 2007 report, draws similar conclusions.” Click here for more.

The secret word is Worry


This something of a test of the new Blogger editor on which these posts are composed. Shaking it down here, Captain. In the case of Blogger they did at least give me the option of keeping the old one, but, being a progressive Virgo, and knowing that learning new stuff is the best hedge against senilty, I decided to go with the progress stream, or at least the stream to what some corporate designer thinks is to a slicker layout. Blogger is, however, the exception. Too many programmes with which I’m forced to interact just update themselves without checking in with me or asking for any kind of by your leave, and, all too often the modifications do not actually improve the process, they just inconvenience me with a lot of crap I neither want nor need, and would be much happier to be without. (And don’t even talk about fucking Facebook.) Also small functions that I’ve highly useful are now and then actually removed because some asshole has a better idea, but leaves me to figure out how the better idea works, because – heaven forbid – no one issues set of instructions with these fucking updates. Weird glitches also seem to occure when updating runs rife. Cookies seem to crumble. Some programs even start to demand money, and get pissed when I ignore them. Blogger may have given me a new editor, but, at the same time, my settings mysteriously changed, and comments now no longer recognises me as the site author and refuses to display my crow avatar. I ask myself if this is a kind of cyber entropy, but reassure myself (which is not easy for even a progressive Virgo) that, in the fullness of time, and as reality flows under the bridge, it will all sort itself out and return to some vague semblence of robot normality.


No, neither did I. The more esoteric include burned coffee-flavored, soy sauce, grilled potato, and sports drink. Why, I wonder, do we in the west have but one?

Click here for Bow Wow Wow

But click here for Johnny Otis and an historical perspective. (Plus a vintage car commercial)


Evel Frozdick started his show business career at a very tender age.


Wednesday, February 24, 2010


I thought we’d seem the last of this crap with that lip-gloss idiot Carrie Prejean, but Lauren Ashley is representing Beverly Hills in the Miss California pageant, and she goes further than even Prejean in her public homophobia by not only opposing gay marriage but hinting that gays should be “put to death.”.
“The Bible says that marriage is between a man and a woman. In Leviticus it says, ‘If man lies with mankind as he would lie with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death and their blood shall be upon them.’ The Bible is pretty black and white. I feel like God himself created mankind and he loves everyone, and he has the best for everyone. If he says that having sex with someone of your same gender is going to bring death upon you, that’s a pretty stern warning, and he knows more than we do about life.”
But Ashley – who claims she parties with Paris Hilton but is also a virgin – has the unmitigated gall to claim some of her friends are gay. Far be it from me to suggest that some of those friends go round and drown this Beverly hillbilly in her cement pond.

Click here for the Rolling Stones

The secret word is Smite


What Orwell failed to anticipate was that the global police state would be a hopeless, tech-challenged, floudering cluster-fuck. The excellent Wendy sent us the following…

“In the name of improved security a hacker showed how a biometric passport issued in the name of long-dead rock 'n' roll king Elvis Presley could be cleared through an automated passport scanning system being tested at an international airport. Using a doctored passport at a self-serve passport machine, the hacker was cleared for travel after just a few seconds and a picture of the King himself appeared on the monitor's display.
Adam Laurie and Jeroen Van Beek, who call themselves "ethical hackers," say the exercise exposed how easy it is to fool a passport scanner with a fraudulent biometric chip. The Presley test was carried out at Amsterdam's Schiphol airport in September 2008 -- by Laurie and Van Beek -- to highlight potential security shortcomings. Passports, and the ability to fake them, are back in the spotlight after the apparent use of false documents during the gang assassination of a Hamas militant in Dubai in January.
Van Beek said: "What we did for that chip is create passport content for Elvis Presley and put it on a chip and sign it with our own key for a non-existent country. And a device that was used to read chips didn't check the country's signatures."
(Click here for more.)

Now click here for Elvis


Image sent by our good pal Roldo. Click here for R. Crumb official website.


"Now you’ll always be able to find the toilet paper, even in the dark, with this new Glow in the Dark Toilet Paper! Perfect for power cuts, this groovy glowing loo roll means that if you don’t want to wake anyone up in your household by turning on the light, it’ll cast its green glow over your bathroom, so you can find your way around. Also – it’s Glow in the Dark Toilet Roll! Just when you thought everything that could be invented, has been, we can still surprise you." Click here if you really must.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


I knew it. I knew when I was draped over a couch doing absolutely nothing, I was still creating. As Jack Nicholson’s character in The Shining forcibly points out, you don’t have to be typing to be writing. We may feel like blank slates, but our brains are still beavering away.

"Many neuroscientists have long assumed that much of the neural activity inside your head when at rest matches your subdued, somnolent mood. In this view, the activity in the resting brain represents nothing more than random noise, akin to the snowy pattern on the television screen when a station is not broadcasting. But recent analysis produced by neuroimaging technologies has revealed something quite remarkable: a great deal of meaningful activity is occurring in the brain when a person is sitting back and doing nothing at all. "It turns out that when your mind is at rest - when you are daydreaming quietly in a chair, say, [or] asleep in a bed or anesthetized for surgery - dispersed brain areas are chattering away to one another. And the energy consumed by this ever active messaging, known as the brain's default mode, is about 20 times that used by the brain when it responds consciously to an outside stimulus. Indeed, most things we do consciously, be it sitting down to eat dinner or making a speech, mark a departure from the baseline activity of the brain default mode. ..."Further analyses indicated that performing a particular task increases the brain's energy consumption by less than 5 percent of the underlying baseline activity. A large fraction of the overall activity - from 60 to 80 percent of all energy used by the brain - occurs in circuits unrelated to any external event. With a nod to our astronomer colleagues, our group came to call this intrinsic activity the brain's dark energy, a reference to the unseen energy that also represents the mass of most of the universe. Marcus E. Raichle, "The Brain's Dark Energy," Scientific American, March 2010

The secret word is Idle


I lifted this from Dark Roasted Blend…

“Hitler had Speer, his favoured architect, design plans for the rebuilding of Berlin. This was a monumental task in itself, to create Welthauptstadt ("World Capital") Germania, the new city, which would be the capital of German-dominated Europe. The photographs of the plans for Hitler's city survive to this day in the German federal archives. A grand boulevard, three miles in length, to be known as Prachtstrasse, ("Street of Magnificence") would run from north to south. A huge arch would be located at the southern end, which would be almost 400 feet high and able to fit Paris' Arc de Triomphe inside it. At the northern end would be the Volkshalle ("People's Hall"), an enormous domed building designed to be the centrepiece of the new Berlin. Based on the Pantheon in Rome, the Volkshalle would still be the largest enclosed space on the planet if it had ever been built. It would have been over 700 feet high and 800 feet in diameter, sixteen times larger than the dome of St. Peter's in the Vatican. Inside, there would have been space for 180,000 people and there is speculation that such a huge capacity could have caused the building to have its own weather system. In colder temperatures, the perspiration and breathing of so many people might actually precipitate and fall back to the ground, almost as indoor rain.”

How can you not love a building with its own weather?

Click here for The Beatles


“Yes,” the sniper replied, “but I blame the cheap Italian rifle.”


As exposed by Rex Morgan MD? WTF? Rex Morgan was a fictional.

CLICK (Guilty?)

Monday, February 22, 2010


If you have fogotten as I had (but received a timely reminder from Boing Boing), or have yet to discover the depths of deception, Wikipedia provides us with a reminder…

“Fnord is the typographic representation of disinformation or irrelevant information intending to misdirect, with the implication of a worldwide conspiracy. The word was coined as a nonsensical term with religious undertones in the Discordian religious text Principia Discordia (1965) by Kerry Thornley and Greg Hill, but was popularized by The Illuminatus! Trilogy (1975) of satirical conspiracy fiction novels by Robert Shea and Robert Anton Wilson. In these novels, the interjection "fnord" is given hypnotic power over the unenlightened. Under the Illuminati program, children in grade school are taught to be unable to consciously see the word "fnord". For the rest of their lives, every appearance of the word subconsciously generates a feeling of uneasiness and confusion, and prevents rational consideration of the subject. This results in a perpetual low-grade state of fear in the populace. The Government acts on the premise that a fearful populace keeps them in power. In the Shea/Wilson construct, fnords are scattered liberally in the text of newspapers and magazines, causing fear and anxiety in those following current events. However, there are no fnords in the advertisements, encouraging a consumerist society. It is implied in the books that fnord is not the actual word used for this task, but merely a substitute, since most readers would be unable to see the actual word.” (Click here for more.)

Now you know. There can be no further excuse for complacency.

Click here for small knitted creatures playing and singing “Walk Don’t Run” (sent by Zmyth)

The secret word is Invisible


Our pal Aeswiren follows his dispatch last Saturday with today’s news that not only is the pharmaceutical industry deceiving us and robbing us blind but may also be killing us to maintain its profits.

“Hundreds of people taking Avandia, a controversial diabetes medicine, needlessly suffer heart attacks and heart failure each month, according to confidential government reports that recommend the drug be removed from the market.
The reports, obtained by The New York Times, say that if every diabetic now taking Avandia were instead given a similar pill named Actos, about 500 heart attacks and 300 cases of heart failure would be averted every month because Avandia can hurt the heart. Avandia, intended to treat Type 2 diabetes, is known as rosiglitazone and was linked to 304 deaths during the third quarter of 2009.
“Rosiglitazone should be removed from the market,” one report, by Dr. David Graham and Dr. Kate Gelperin of the Food and Drug Administration, concludes. Both authors recommended that Avandia be withdrawn.
The internal F.D.A. reports are part of a fierce debate within the agency over what to do about Avandia, manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline. Some agency officials want the drug withdrawn because they believe there is a safer alternative; others insist that studies of the drug provide contradictory information and that Avandia should continue to be an option for doctors and patients. GlaxoSmithKline said that it had studied Avandia extensively and that “scientific evidence simply does not establish that Avandia increases” the risk of heart attacks.”
(Click here for more.)


Gary Frozdick and his friend Simon were a big hit at costume parties.



Sunday, February 21, 2010


Sunday afternoon, stoned and comfortable, and outside the window the UFOs suddenly appear silently out of the sunset. This is the moment of full contact when the aliens themselves will finally reveal all, leaving zero-sum slack for doubt, discussion, or disinformation. We will know we are not alone and our neighbours in the quadrant will finally show their formally hidden and forbidden faces. The light of revelation will shine and all mysteries will be solved. Oh that it would happen. Wouldn’t it be nice? But it never does. It constantly remains a yearning, curious creation of imagination. Imaginings that, for the most part, are projections of highly human conditions. The one thing of which I am certain is that, if and when we ever do face the aliens, they will be quantum times more alien that our minds ever could have conjured.
Yesterday, however, I did receive no less then three emails on the subject of UFOs – and without any major event, like that big alien thingy showing up over Norway last year, to prompt them. Although hardly unprecedented, it was Jungian enough for me to realise I hadn’t been paying to much attention to the ET labyrinth of late. And I use the word labyrinth advisedly since UFO speculation and folklore extends philosphically from a tourist trap in Roswell, New Mexico, through golden New Age fantasies, to all encompassing interplanetary conspiracy theory, and is by no means simple. One link, from our pal Aeswiren, took me to the conspiracy end of the playing field where I found an imassioned plea to the President…

“It is time for a new Emancipation Declaration - one that frees all of humanity from the shackles of economic slavery that results from secret centralized power, corruption and global economic hegemony. The world will not find justice and peace so long as half of the world's population lives in poverty while the other half cannibalizes the Earth to maintain its standard of living. This dire situation can and must be transformed into a world of abundance, clean and plentiful energy and genuine sustainability. On this foundation, with these new sciences, technologies and a new consciousness, we can move forward as a people, united and in peace. Then and only then will we be welcome amongst the other civilizations of the cosmos.
That we are not alone in the universe is now a scientific given. That we have been visited already by advanced civilizations - whose interests here are likely ancient - is controversial. However, in my discussions with European, Vatican, Canadian and other leaders around the world, a growing consensus exists that we have been visited and the time for disclosing this information is long past due. More importantly, an appropriate diplomatic initiative is needed to communicate with these extraterrestrial visitors within a framework of universal peace, free from the past dominance of militarism and paranoia.
Insofar as upwards of 80% of the American people think that 'UFOs' are real, and that some aspect of the government is lying to them about it, continued secrecy redounds only to the benefit of the precious few who profit from such secrecy. This secrecy undermines the credibility of the US and other governments, and allows the cancer of unchecked covert power - forewarned by President Eisenhower in his last address to the nation - to metastasize throughout the world. It now threatens the very life of Earth.
Moreover, there exists a secret, 'unacknowledged' operation that has used very advanced electromagnetic weapon systems to track, target, and on occasion, but with increasing accuracy, down extraterrestrial vehicles. This reckless behavior constitutes an existential threat to all of mankind and must be reined in immediately.
The so-called MJ-12 or Majestic group that controls this subject operates without the consent of the people, or the oversight of the President and Congress. It functions as a transnational government unto itself, answerable to no one. All checks and balances have been obliterated. While as a governing entity it stands outside of the rule of law, its influence reaches into many governments, corporations, agencies, media and financial interests. Its corrupting influence is profound and, indeed, it has operated as a very powerful and embedded global RICO whose power to date remains unchecked.”
(Click here for the whole thing.)

Heady stuff okay? Although I have a few doubts about full disclosure. Do we really want Palin’s ilk and fans clued in on the real deal? Or the more hysterical Muslim fundamentals? Could their already stretched and threadbare sanities and pre-existing rage survive the obvious collapse and final disproving of their patriarchal sheep-herding gods? But it’s Sunday. Too lazy to debate. I did, though, take a walk around YouTube to look at what there was in the way of UFOs, and I’ll leave you with a couple of links, while I go back to the window in the faint hope the saucers might still show.

Click here for compilation of NASA UFO footage

Click here for another compilation of varied plausiblity

Now click here for Joe Meek
The secret initials are EBE


“Jack had it all figured out with the aliens, but then the bad guys shot him.”