I am fond of, as they say, all ten amendments in the Bill of Rights. Check out what happens when a computer manufacturer gets attitudinal about the Second. (A computer manufacturer in Texas, no less — did 1 April come early this year?!)
You’re not going to believe this, but the Weekly World News (those guys!) has a poll asking which of the Bill of Rights GW Bush is likely to abolish first. Meanwhile, it takes Aaron Sorkin to call NBC News on that big ol’ blowj^H^H^H valentine to Dubya they ran back in January (no, they did not show him too drunk to eat pretzels). You’re smart readers so I don’t have to lay out for you the implications when the joke newspapers and fiction writers are the only media members willing to cry foul, do I?
!!! ZOWIE !!! (Oh, stop complaining — just read it and see if you don’t agree. I’ve been reading haiku all day and if I can’t say something evocative, at least I can be brief. Or could, before I started explaining myself to y’all.)
An excellent Michael Lewis piece on pirate television aimed into Iran. Note especially the minor point he brings up — when the owner of the satellite he was beaming toward didn’t like the flak they were getting, they cut him off. Freedom of the press is reserved to those who own one. Remember that as your government lifts laws that kept a very few people from owning all the television “printing presses.”
If you’ve been following the Stephen Ambrose plagiarism scandal, you must read this story, about one of the heroes whose memoirs Ambrose thoroughly ripped off. I’m embarrassed to say I book one of this guy’s books for a friend. Never again. And people worry about online plagiarism?! (Update: There are, of course, many more cases than Ambrose’s, as you’ll see here.)
The whisper of the beginning of the move back to sanity? And from Salt Lake, no less?! Apparently, pointless and random security “arrangements” are no match for the power of beer. John Perry Barlow — a Utahn — said that Americans won’t stand to be inconvenienced by onerous security measures even post-911, and he seems to be correct. (Or, as Homer Simpson put it: Here’s to alcohol, cause of and solution to all the world’s problems.)
I can sit here and grump about the weather, my shambotic apartment, and what-all else, or I can take comfort in the fact that at least I don’t have to make my hair do this. (I’ll be frank — they lost me somewhere around the part about the brushing and the combing.)
It’s Car Talk vs. Seattle’s so-called drivers — don’t miss the fun.
Pondering, this Shabbes night, Daniel Pearl’s last moments. According to those who have seen the tape, his last words were: I am a Jew. Then they slit this throat. Then they decapitated him. Leaving aside the fury I’m feeling at these creatures, these animals — and I’d like to — I’m thinking of a prayer from the Conservative siddur:
I am a Jew because my faith demands no abdication of the mind.
I am a Jew because my faith demands all the devotion of my heart.
I am a Jew because wherever there is suffering, the Jew weeps.
I am a Jew because wherever there is despair, the Jew hopes.
I am a Jew because the message of our faith is the oldest and the newest.
I am a Jew because the promise of our faith is a universal promise.
I am a Jew because for the Jew the world is not completed; people must complete it.
I am a Jew because for the Jew humanity is not fully created; people must complete it.
I am a Jew because the faith of the people Israel places humanity above nations, above Judaism itself.
I am a Jew because the faith of the people Israel places above humanity, image of the divine, the Oneness of God.
Joanna, meet Eric: Kenya’s Mr. Wainaina is my favorite singer today. Don’t you wish we had a few guys like this on the scene right now? (Barring that, I’m thinking Uncle Dave Macon, “Enron Gravy Train Blues.” You know you want it…)