Posts Tagged ‘Egypt Uprising

06
Mar
11

3.6.2011 … my mac and cheese comfort food maker is now in need of comfort food … what can a one-armed bandit make???

news, identity theft, David Koch, kudos: Can you imagine having your identity stolen for political purposes?  Kudos to Mr. Koch for his philanthropic work.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — More than a thousand miles from the labor tumult in Wisconsin — where his name shows up on the signs of protesters and a liberal blogger impersonating him got through to the governor on the phone and said “gotta crush that union!” — the real David H. Koch was greeted rather more warmly here Friday when he officially opened a new cancer research institute bearing his name.

Mr. Koch and his brother Charles, both No. 5 in Forbes’s list of the richest Americans, are targets of liberal activists.

Mr. Koch, a billionaire who is perhaps best known for his family’s contributions to conservative causes, got a standing ovation from scientists, Nobel laureates and politicians of various political stripes as he opened the new David H. Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, which he gave $100 million to help build. And in a brief, and rare, interview, Mr. Koch, 70, spoke of his hopes for the new center, his prostate cancer and the prank call heard around the world.

“It’s a case of identity theft,” Mr. Koch said of the call in which the liberal blogger got through to Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin, drew him out about his plans to weaken unions and posted a recording of the call on the Internet, making news and embarrassing the governor. Mr. Koch, whose company, Koch Industries, had given major campaign support to Governor Walker, among other conservative candidates and causes, added, “I didn’t even know his name before this brouhaha erupted.”

via Cancer Research Before Activism, Koch Brother Says – NYTimes.com.

Middle East Unrest/Awakening, Bahrain, US position:

Protesters here say their dreams of democracy are being thwarted by the United States’ desire to protect a large naval base in Bahrain, by the perception that Shiites reflexively side with Iran, and by the influence of neighboring Saudi Arabia, which analysts say would probably not accept a Shiite-led Bahrain.

Justin Gengler, a former Fulbright scholar in Bahrain, said he did not expect the United States to abandon its support for the Khalifa family, which has run this country for more than two centuries.

“As soon as it looks like the U.S. is not supporting royal families in the gulf region, it starts to raise eyebrows everywhere — in Qatar, in Saudi Arabia, in Kuwait, in Oman,” Mr. Gengler said. “The U.S. can’t turn its back on the Bahraini royal family without implicitly abandoning the idea of monarchies in the gulf.”

Opposition politicians here are seeking to convince Washington that a constitutional monarchy in Bahrain would not be a threat to regional stability. An elected government would be inherently more stable, said Matar Ebrahim Ali Matar, a Shiite member of Parliament who resigned after the government crackdown.

“The United States should support this wave of democracy — it’s coming,” Mr. Matar said. “If it doesn’t happen this year, it will come in the coming years.”

Under the current political system the lower house of Parliament is elected, but its lawmaking powers are curtailed by an upper house, whose members are appointed by the king, who also has wide-ranging powers to pass decrees.

via Bahrain Protesters Fear Lack of U.S. Support – NYTimes.com.

NYC, random:  interesting take …

New York is a vibrant city, teeming with people at all hours. Enjoy the restaurants and the sights, but be wary of its brutal winters

via Doing business in New York: An abundance of activity | The Economist.

Middle East Unrest/Awakening, Egypt Uprising, pop ups, culture: Pop up kindergarten int the middle of Tahir Square?  Really interesting story …

Did You Know There Was a Pop-Up Kindergarten in Tahrir Square?

Editor’s note: This story of children in Tahrir Square during the Egyptian revolution has a back story we want to share. We saw a photo of kids painting in Tahrir from the BBC with this caption:

“Schools in Cairo have been closed during the protests. But there are so many mothers who want to attend the demonstration that many bring their children here – to a kindergarten organised by the demonstrators.”

Since we couldn’t find more information on this online we asked a few protesters who were actively tweeting if they would send us details. Here is a heartwarming, earnest, and surprisingly gripping account of the uplifting role of children in Tahrir Square during three weeks of revolution. It was sent to GOOD by Mosa’ab Elshamy (@mosaaberizing) a pharmacy student in Egypt.

I’m not exactly sure when the kindergarten idea started, but I’d say it became most prominent when the situation in Tahrir got less tense, which was from the second Friday. The first one, January 28, in which people marched from every district in Cairo to Tahrir, was a violent and bloody one. Police used every possible means of suppression from tear gas to live ammunition. Very few families stayed in Tahrir then as it wasn’t safe.

The place was mostly occupied by young men but, still, a few women were present there. The second Friday, the 4th of February, was a festive one. It was after the tense situation in Tahrir cooled for a bit, and the army had finally stepped into the picture, offering protection and keeping the thugs away. The mood stayed like that throughout the week until the decisive Friday, February 11, when Mubarak stepped down and jubilation ensued.

Some of the kids would do their own marches around the square, with people applauding and smiling at them.

So, from this second Friday, the 4th, till a week later, Tahrir was one of the happiest places on earth. The spirits were wonderful throughout, and more people started believing in us. Tahrir was much safer, the thugs’ attacks had stopped. Many factors allowed families to come to Tahrir then. A lot of them would usually come early, spend the day chanting, singing, and enjoying the general mood, then leave before the curfew hours started. There were a few families that stayed, though, and that sparked the idea to create a kindergarten in Tahrir Square.

via A Moving Letter from Egypt About the Role of Children in Tahrir Square – Culture – GOOD.

quotes, dogs, twitter:

Outside of a dog, a book is probably man’s best friend, and inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.” Groucho Marx

via Twitter / @DailyLit: Outside of a dog, a book i ….

20
Feb
11

2.20.2011 … we’ve seen alot today … north and south …

Egypt Uprising, Middle East Unrest, Bahrain, military might:

There comes a moment in the life of almost every repressive regime when leaders — and the military forces that have long kept them in power — must make a choice from which there is usually no turning back: Change or start shooting.

The Legacy of 18 Days in Tahrir Square (February 20, 2011)

Egypt’s military, calculating that it was no longer worth defending an 82-year-old, out-of-touch pharaoh with no palatable successor and no convincing plan for Egypt’s future, ultimately sided with the protesters on the street, at least for Act 1.

In so doing, they ignored the advice of the Saudis, who, in calls to Washington, said that President Hosni Mubarak should open fire if that’s what it took, and that Americans should just stop talking about “universal rights” and back him.

As the contagion of democracy protests spread in the Arab world last week, Bahrain’s far less disciplined forces decided, in effect, that the Saudis, who are their next-door neighbors, were right. They drew two lessons from Egypt: If President Obama calls, hang up. And open fire early.

via When Armies Decide an Uprising’s Fate – NYTimes.com.

Jane Austen: 🙂

In this book, Rachel M. Brownstein considers Jane Austen as heroine, moralist, satirist, romantic, woman, and author, along with the changing notions of these categories over time and texts. She finds echoes of many of Austen’s insights and techniques in contemporary Jane-o-mania, a commercially driven, erotically charged popular vogue that aims to preserve and liberate, correct and collaborate with old Jane. Brownstein’s brilliant discussion of the distinctiveness and distinction of the novelist’s genius clarifies the reasons why we read Jane Austen—or why we should read her—and reorients the prevailing view of her work. Reclaiming the rich comedy of Austen while building a new narrative of authorship, Brownstein unpacks the novelist’s fascinating entanglement with her readers and admirers.

via Why Jane Austen?.

Harry Potter, parenting:  Since the HP books and movies were such a big part of my kids childhood, I loved looking back on these images of Harry, Hermione and Ron as they grew up in the movie versions.

http://www.instyle.com/instyle/package/general/photos/0,,20164501_20440996_20873748,00.html.

culture:  Very interesting perspective …

The paper posits a triangle, with the family, the individual, and the state in the corners, and argues that the Nordic countries prioritise a different dynamic than Germany or the United States. As Bagehot summarises:

Americans favour a Family-Individual axis, this suggests, suspecting the state as a threat to liberty. Germans revere an axis connecting the family and the state, with a smaller role for individual autonomy. In the Nordic countries, they argue, the state and the individual form the dominant alliance. The paper cited, by the way, is entitled: “Pippi Longstocking: The Autonomous Child and the Moral Logic of the Swedish Welfare State”. It hails Pippi (the strongest girl in the world and an anarchic individualist who lives without parents in her own house, with only a monkey, horse, a bag of gold and a strong moral compass for company) as a Nordic archetype.

This framework provides a way to think about how Americans think about the state. My colleague notes below that America has an exceptionally small government, and that the reasons may be historical, cultural, or institutional, or all of the above, and that the causal connections reinforcing the small-state approach would be difficult to untangle. Whatever the causes of America’s underlying moral logic, though, it’s interesting to think how this plays out today. It makes sense that if America posits a strong family-individual axis—as a hedge in the absence of state support, if not in opposition to it—that Americans would be more preoccupied with issues that pertain to individuals and the family, and would drag those issues into the political realm. (This new bill from South Dakota, however, which would make it a “justifiable homicide” if you kill someone to prevent them from killing a fetus, is taking it rather far.)

via Family and the state: The underlying moral logic | The Economist.

gift ideas, whiskey:  We have a few single malt lovers in my family!

Anyone can drink and enjoy booze, but if you really want to know about a certain type of liquor, you’re gonna need to try more than what you’ll find at the local state store.

via 101 Whiskies to Try Before You Die | Uncrate.

random, resort living:  Wouldn’t that be fun instead of a golf cart!

Inspired by Audi’s classic racers and based on a limited-edition pedal car model, the rear wheel-drive Type C is powered by a small electric motor and a lithium-ion battery that propels one human — up to 5′ 11″ — at speeds of up to 18 mph, and as far as 15 miles. Sure, it’s not a speedster by any means, but it’s a much sportier way to get around the island than that golf cart you’ve been driving.

via Audi Auto Union Type C E-Tron Study | Uncrate.

NBA basketball:

But the fact is that Griffin jumped over a car and dunked an ally-op thrown from a sunroof; McGee dunked three balls on a single jump; Serge Ibaka dunked after snatching a stuffed animal from the basket with his teeth. These are not meaningful feats, but they are impressive nonetheless. Griffin admitted afterward that he worried about meeting the astronomical expectations. Just think what they will be like next year.

via Once again, Clippers rookie Blake Griffin dunks over high expectations – Lee Jenkins – SI.com.

random, history, WWI: You go girl!

Florence Green, from King’s Lynn, Norfolk, was 17 years old when she joined the Women’s Royal Air Force, in the late summer of 1918. Come the 11th day of the 11th month, she was working as a waitress at RAF Marham, when the pilots greeted news of the German surrender by clambering into their planes and bombing nearby RAF Narborough airfield with bags of flour. Narborough, not to be outdone, retaliated with their own daring raid, this time dropping bags of soot.

Yesterday the Air Force marked Mrs Green’s birthday with the delivery of a rather more traditional nature: a cake. At 110, Mrs Green joins a highly exclusive club of “supercentenarians” – only around one in 1,000 of those with a letter from the Queen on the mantelpiece push on to this next landmark.

via Florence, the last Great War veteran in Britain, turns 110 – News, People – The Independent.

green, bicycles, London:  I still have never been able to rent a bike …

Two-thirds of London’s “Boris bikes” have had to undergo repairs in their first six months of operation, new figures on the state of the capital’s fleet of cycles for hire have revealed.

Transport for London (TfL) has disclosed that their repair teams are being called out to fix the rental bikes at the rate of more than 30 every day of the week, as the strain of millions of journeys takes its toll.

via Two-thirds of London’s Boris bikes need repairs – Home News, UK – The Independent.

15
Feb
11

2.15.2011 … VD is over … next stop President’s Day/Winter Break …

St. Valentine’s Day, history, media, followup:  Yesterday, I jokingly said ..”enough said,” knowing full well I would click and listen to VD stories all day … and I truly enjoyed reading all the history and true life stories this year.  I wonder if the journalists roll their eyes and say, “why me?” when they get the assignment.  Here is a sampling: The Dark Origins Of Valentine’s Day : NPR, Love Letters that Live On – CBS News Video, History of Valentine’s Day / Academic & Pulse / Audio – Inside Higher Ed.

St. Valentine’s Day, faith and spirituality:  I like it that my favorite Methodist blogger reminds us that love in the Bible is not lust but love in action …

Jesus cares how we live, and in every little corner or life, not just some spiritual zone. Jesus loves. Jesus wants love. Jesus wants what we do to be love in action.

via Myers Park United Methodist Church | Charlotte Methodist Church, Methodist Churches Charlotte NC – Myers Park UMC.

St. Valentine’s Day, The President, LOL:  I agree with the First Lady …

“I think a lot of laughing,” the first lady said Tuesday at a White House luncheon with reporters who asked about the Obamas’ union. “I think in our house we don’t take ourselves too seriously, and laughter is the best form of unity, I think, in a marriage.

“So we still find ways to have fun together, and a lot of it is private and personal. But we keep each other smiling and that’s good,” she added.

It also helps that Obama is “very romantic.”

via Michelle Obama: Laugh With Your Valentine – CBS News.

St. Valentine’s Day, me, followup, recipes: A little wine, a little chocolate, a little history, a little love … what more could I ask of a day!  Oh and for me … You had me at triple chocolate … (my husband actually brought me a “sinfully chocolate” mini ice cream cake … )

Triple-Chocolate Mousse Cake

via Triple-Chocolate Mousse Cake :: America’s Test Kitchen :: Recipes.

technology, history, our future, faith and spirituality:  very interesting article and very interesting blog post by Jim Miller/Hopelens (my favorite Presbyterian blogger).

Just as nobody could have predicted the impact of the steam engine in 1750—or the printing press in 1450, or the transistor in 1950—it is impossible to foresee the long-term impact of 3D printing. But the technology is coming, and it is likely to disrupt every field it touches. Companies, regulators and entrepreneurs should start thinking about it now. One thing, at least, seems clear: although 3D printing will create winners and losers in the short term, in the long run it will expand the realm of industry—and imagination.

via3D printing: The printed world | The Economist.

So, every player in the orchestra, from the lead number one to the lowliest third violin can be playing a Strad.

So, in a universe with a surfeit of excellence will things be “better?” Will the Stradivarius be noticed when it is common? To excel means to “step beyond” the norm, but if the new normal is perfection, where do we find excellence? Will the palate get sated and then lose its taste. I am reminded of Jesus’ saying about the salt losing its savor. Is Paradise Regained too boring?

Then the agricultural fields of employment were abandoned for the big cities with their demand for hands in the “manufactories.” The additive manufacturing envisioned will need few hands, more brains, and just a couple of fingers.

I wonder if the new 3D technology can print some meaning and purpose. Can it print me love and hope? Can it print peace and justice? Can it print compassion and forgiveness? Can it print me my life?

Additive manufacturing presents huge spiritual challenges and opportunities.

via Print me a life « Hopelens Blog.

Apple:  Even without Steve Jobs, Apple is not stopping … Apple’s Calendar for the Next 6 Months: Apple News, Tips and Reviews «.

urban development, cities, bookshelf:  “our species greatest invention?”   Very interesting take on cities.  You’ll have to read the review … or maybe the book.

For Mr Glaeser, a Harvard economist who grew up in Manhattan, this is a happy prospect. He calls cities “our species’ greatest invention”: proximity makes people more inventive, as bright minds feed off one another; more productive, as scale gives rise to finer degrees of specialisation; and kinder to the planet, as city-dwellers are more likely to go by foot, bus or train than the car-slaves of suburbia and the sticks. He builds a strong case, too, for town-dwelling, drawing on his own research as well as that of other observers of urban life. And although liberally sprinkled with statistics, “Triumph of the City” is no dry work. Mr Glaeser writes lucidly and spares his readers the equations of his trade. This is popular economics of the best sort.

via Urban life: A tale of many cities | The Economist.

green, technology, me:  I have a five year old Bosch … which NEVER gets the dishes clean … I think it is both the BOSCH and the detergent! Great article!

Another Triumph for the Greens

To go with toilets that don’t flush and light bulbs that don’t light, we now have dishwashers that don’t wash.

via Another Triumph for the Greens | The Weekly Standard.

UNC-CH, change:  I hate to say this but I don’t think this is Carolina Blue either … it looks baby blue to me.

This year’s senior class can graduate with new gowns designed by Alexander Julian. UNC says the new gowns are a closer match to “true” Carolina blue and are also more environmentally friendly.

via The Daily Tar Heel :: Pit Talk : Caps and gowns get a new look from Alexander Julian.

Egypt Uprising, technology, internet, FaceBook, culture: Loved this explanation of social space and public space merging!

But if Friday’s resignation of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak proves nothing else, it is that social media and public space can be complementary, rather than in conflict. The social bonds built in the virtual world can spill over into the physical world–and with such seismic force that they can topple an autocrat.

The revolt is Egypt is said to have begun with the killing of Khaled Said, a 28-year-old Egyptian businessman who was hauled out of an Internet cafe by plainclothes policemen last June and beaten to death. As the New York Times reported last week, a graphic Facebook page tribute to Said provided an outlet for people’s rage.

via Cityscapes | Chicago Tribune | Blog.

high-speed rail, technology, budgets, politics:  I think we may have missed the boat … train … whatever.

Barack Obama’s just-released budget for fiscal 2012 provides a major boost for transportation and infrastructure spending. Not surprisingly, transportation advocacy groups are praising the proposals, but will they get any traction in a Republican-controlled House that has knives out to cut the federal deficit? Significantly, the budget doesn’t propose raising the federal gas tax to pay for the increases in transportation and infrastructure spending.

via Cityscapes | Chicago Tribune | Blog.

politics, 2012 Election, Newt Gingrich, pithy quotes: He has a lot of “‘splaining to do” to get my vote.  Inconsistencies between political rhetoric and personal life is a big negative for me.  I call it dishonesty.  He may be the king of pithy quotes … read on …

 

Stop, you say, Gingrich may not run for the Republican nomination and even if he does, chances are he won’t win it. But Gingrich says he’ll decide by the end of the month whether to set up an “exploratory committee” to raise money. The recent performances by a parade of prospects at the Conservative Political Action Conference make clear both why he is seriously entertaining the idea and why many Republicans continue to hold him in high regard, despite all.

And for people of a certain age, there is a lot of all: The extramarital affair with a House committee aide who is now his third wife, the personal and political failings that prompted him to leave the speakership and Congress, the inflammatory rhetoric that has made him so polarizing. (To hit a few highlights, he called Sonia Sotomayor racist, claimed Obama has a “Kenyan anti-colonialist” worldview and said that “Woody Allen having non-incest with a non-daughter … fits the Democratic platform perfectly”).

Over the three-day CPAC conference, one 2012 prospect after another brought to mind the word “generic.” The two who broke out of the mold were Gov. Mitch Daniels of Indiana and Gingrich. Daniels gave a dense and high-minded speech about facing down the “Red Menace” of debt. Gingrich was Gingrich: hurling colorful insults at Obama, Democrats and their policies, flinging out ideas that included replacing the Environmental Protection Agency with an Environmental Solutions Agency and proposing that Obama receive an invitation to be CPAC’s keynote speaker next year – if he meets certain conditions like signing a repeal of his signature health care law.

That led my colleague David Corn to tweet: “Calls on Obama to sign a repeal of #HCR. That’s like calling on Newt to remarry wife No. 1.” Just the type of joke that would dog Gingrich in a presidential campaign.

via Would Women Support Newt Gingrich for President?.

technology, markets:  Scary … we have no idea how to value these companies …

The new high tech-bubble might not be the one you’re thinking of. Measuring the bubble’s size and inner pressure of is a delicate exercise. For today, we’ll consider two sectors: social networks and online media — such as the Huffington Post acquired last week by AOL for a stunning $315m.

via The Traffic Bubble | Monday Note.

gLee, Barbara Streissand, mea culpa:  Doesn’t hurt my feelings if she doesn’t like the show …

Streisand Apologizes: When Barbra Streisand was asked if she would consider an appearance on the hit dramedy at MusiCares ceremony, the “Yentl” star said “Not If I Can Help It.” The singer issued a clarification about her brusque statement on her Web site, saying, in part, “When asked if I would ever appear on ‘Glee,” I should have said, “You never know.” It was wrong to say, “Not if I can help it. What I meant was that I’ve been overwhelmed preparing for my performance on MusiCares, the Grammys, recording a new album and starting a new movie.

via Barbra Streisand Clarifies ‘Glee’ Remark; Ken and Barbie Reunite – Speakeasy – WSJ.

websites,  favorites:  I have found a new site and I love it …. The Academic Minute – Inside Higher Ed / The Academic Minute.

14
Feb
11

2.14.2011 … Happy Saint Valentine’s Day … enough said …

Saint Valentine’s Day, history:

So what’s Saint Valentine’s Day all about and why do we mark its occasion every February 14? That’s hard to pin down, as there are many different stories as to the origins of Valentine’s Day, but like many of the holidays we observe, Valentine’s Day has its roots in paganism.

Actually, hundreds of years before the Church altered the day of love in an attempt to rid it of its pagan roots, Romans practiced a pagan celebration in mid-February commemorating young men’s rite of passage to the god Lupercus. The young men would draw names of teenage girls from a box and whomever the boy chose would be his companion for the remainder of the year.

The Church, of course, didn’t like the pagan festival and so Pope Gelasius ordered a slight change in the celebration. He did so by filling the box with the names of saints instead of girls and allowing both men and women to draw from the box. The game was to emulate the ways of the saint for the remainder of the year. The Church then found a patron saint by the name of Bishop Valentine for people to celebrate instead of Lupercus.

Bishop Valentine was sent to jail and executed after Claudius II (270 AD) found out he was performing secret marriages. You see, Claudius banned marriage to preserve the number of single men to be soldiers. Claudius, so the story goes, believed that single men made better soldiers. Bishop Valentine disagreed with Claudius and performed secret weddings until he was found out. He was executed on February 14. It was during his time in jail that he wrote his lover a note and signed it, “From Your Valentine.”

via A Brief History of Valentine’s Day – West Roxbury, MA Patch.

Valentine’s Day, holidays, gifts, food – dessert, chocolate, Charlotte:

The intricate flavors of chocolate and wine linger on your tongue – and often the complex, deep, hidden tastes are subconscious. Make them rise to the surface by mating your chocolate with the perfect wine.

CNN spoke to Sunset wine editor Sara Schneider to figure out what will make the flavors of both sweet treats pop out. We’ll start off with the obvious: dark chocolate goes best with red wine. But beware of pairing the delectable dark chocolate with spicy, acidic wines like Cabernet Sauvignon. The bold tannins that give the wine a dry, puckery feeling can be too harsh against the bitter chocolate.

via Wine and Chocolate: A Winning Combo for Valentine’s Day – TIME NewsFeed.

We have a new wine/chocolate bar.  I don’t think I will go today, but it is on my list.

 

 

We are a small, locally-owned and operated wine and chocolate retail store with tasting room. We offer boutique and premium wines from California, the Pacific Northwest, France and other European wine regions plus artisan chocolates made in-house. Step into our shop and you’ll enjoy daily wine tastings, chocolate samples and highly personalized service.

via Petit Philippe – Wine | Chocolate | Tasting Room | Charlotte, NC.

Valentine’s Day, movies, icons, kisses:  Iconic kisses?  What’s your favorite movie kiss … Old movie?  New?  My favorite is not on the list. 🙂

The 25 Most Iconic Movie Kisses – Star Couples – Celebrity – InStyle.

Egypt Uprising, headlines, followup:  I mentioned yesterday that I go to the Newseum website to compare headlines when a big event occurs.  This article does the same thing.  Very interesting … some even humorous …

History unfolded yesterday when after 18 days of protests in Egypt, Mubarak finally stepped down as president after 30 years in power.

The front pages of newspapers in moments like this become part of history itself, so we went through the world’s newspapers today to see the ways they documented this incredible moment.

Of course, some of our favorite covers still came from our colorful local newspapers, like the Daily News’ headline “Hosni Mu Bye-Bye!” and the New York Post’s “That’s A Wrap!” (featuring Mubarak’s head on top of an Egyptian mummy.)

via FRONT PAGE HISTORY: See How Newspapers Around The World Celebrated Egypt’s Freedom.

Gabrielle Giffords, recovery, miracles, update: So far so good.

The human brain has what amounts to redundant circuits for some simple tasks, like walking, and it is possible for patients to make rapid progress on those skills and still have trouble with mental work and speaking, doctors said.

“There are backup systems in the brain for the more basic functions that have been around longer in human beings,” said Dr. Jonathan Fellus, the director of the Brain Injury Program at the Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation in New Jersey. “Conversely, for things such as language, which are uniquely human, it’s a highly specialized and delicate network that doesn’t get reconstructed so easily.”

via Giffords Recovery Is Continuing, Friends Say – NYTimes.com.

Egypt Uprising:

As protesters in Tahrir Square faced off against pro-government forces, they drew a lesson from their counterparts in Tunisia: “Advice to the youth of Egypt: Put vinegar or onion under your scarf for tear gas.”

Cairo, Feb. 3 After more than a week of unrest, anti-Mubarak protesters clashed with supporters of the president for control of Tahrir Square. When confronting the police, the protesters wore armor made of cardboard and Pepsi bottles.

The exchange on Facebook was part of a remarkable two-year collaboration that has given birth to a new force in the Arab world — a pan-Arab youth movement dedicated to spreading democracy in a region without it. Young Egyptian and Tunisian activists brainstormed on the use of technology to evade surveillance, commiserated about torture and traded practical tips on how to stand up to rubber bullets and organize barricades.

They fused their secular expertise in social networks with a discipline culled from religious movements and combined the energy of soccer fans with the sophistication of surgeons and psychiatrists. Breaking free from older veterans of the Arab political opposition, they relied on tactics of nonviolent resistance channeled from an American scholar through a Serbian youth brigade — but also on marketing tactics borrowed from Silicon Valley.

via A Tunisian-Egyptian Link That Shook Arab History – NYTimes.com.

Egypt Uprising, Middle East: Tunisia … Egypt … now Yemen, Bahrain and Algiers.

Mr. Mubarak’s resignation Friday emboldened protesters throughout the Middle East where opposition movements are aggressively calling for political freedom. Security forces and protesters clashed in Yemen and Bahrain on Sunday while thousands of Algerians, defying a ban on protests, flooded a central square in Algiers on Saturday calling for political reform. The Palestinian Authority in the West Bank ordered the dismissal of its Cabinet and said it would hold long-delayed parliamentary and presidential elections by September.

Egypt’s cabinet removes Mubarak’s portrait as Israel welcomes news that Egypt will abide by its treaties. Video courtesy of Reuters.

Egyptians continue their celebrations, a day after the 30-year rule of Hosni Mubarak came to an end. Video courtesy of Reuters.

And in Iran, opposition leaders planned a demonstration on Monday in solidarity with the Egyptian and Tunisian revolts. The streets of Tehran rocked to the chants of residents shouting “Death to the dictator” and “God is great” Sunday night, according to witnesses and videos posted on Youtube.

via Mideast Unrest Spreads – WSJ.com.

Great Recession, real estate, Great Recovery:  S -L-O-W …

The rolling real estate crash that ravaged Florida and the Southwest is delivering a new wave of distress to communities once thought to be immune — economically diversified cities where the boom was relatively restrained.

In the last year, home prices in Seattle had a bigger price decline than in Las Vegas. Minneapolis dropped more than Miami, and Atlanta fared worse than Phoenix.

Redfin, a real estate brokerage firm based in Seattle, says foot traffic began picking up in the last several weeks. Mortgage rates are rising, which could nudge those who need to buy to make a deal now for fear rates will rise even more.

But whenever the market finally does pick up, all those accidental landlords will want to unload, putting another burden on the market. “So many sellers are waiting in the shadows,” said Redfin’s chief executive, Glenn Kelman. “The inventory is going to expand and expand and expand. I don’t see any basis for significant price increases.”

While almost every economist is expecting another round of price declines for the next few months, many see a gradual leveling off in the second half of the year. Fiserv, the data company that produces the monthly Case-Shiller Home Price Indexes, analyzed price trends in 375 communities. About three-quarters of them will be stable by December, Fiserv calculates.

via Housing Crash Is Hitting Cities Thought to Be Stable – NYTimes.com.

music, lists:  Fun to see what others think … The ALL-TIME 100 Albums – TIME.

10
Feb
11

2.10.2011 … I am off to a festival … festival of legal learning at UNC … whooppee!

faith and spirituality:  Really liked this post by Brene Brown.

As I look around at the political and social struggle around us, I’m reminded of my own struggle to find/reclaim faith in my life. As a lover of all things certain, I wanted faith to work like an epidural; to numb the pain of vulnerability. As it turned out, my faith ended up being more like a midwife – a nurturing partner who leans into the discomfort with me and whispers “push” and “breathe.”

Faith didn’t make my life less vulnerable, it simply offered to travel with me through the uncertainty.

via faith, doubt and inspiration – my blog – Ordinary Courage.

Egypt Uprising:  Makes you think …

In a region where the truth and truth-tellers have so long been smothered under the crushing weight of oil, autocracy and religious obscurantism, suddenly the Arab world has a truly free space — a space that Egyptians themselves, not a foreign army, have liberated — and the truth is now gushing out of here like a torrent from a broken hydrant.

And the this is a titanic struggle and negotiation between the tired but still powerful, top-down 1952 Egyptian Army-led revolution and a vibrant, new, but chaotic, 2011, people-led revolution from the bottom-up — which has no guns but enormous legitimacy. I hope the Tahrir Square protesters can get organized enough to negotiate a new constitution with the army. There will be setbacks. But whatever happens, they have changed Egypt.

After we walked from Tahrir Square across the Nile bridge, Professor Mamoun Fandy remarked to me that there is an old Egyptian poem that says: “ ‘The Nile can bend and turn, but what is impossible is that it would ever dry up.’ The same is true of the river of freedom that is loose here now. Maybe you can bend it for a while, or turn it, but it is not going to dry up.”

via Speakers’ Corner on the Nile – NYTimes.com.

quotes, pity quotes, Julia Child:  Love this old article/interview with Julia Child!

The problem with the world right now is that we don’t have any politicians like Roosevelt or Churchill to give us meaning and depth. We don’t have anyone who’s speaking for the great and the true and the noble. What we need now is a heroic type, someone who could rally the people to higher deeds. I don’t know what’s to become of us.

via Julia Child Interview – Eating Healthy and Smart – Quotes about Diets – Esquire.

Gabrielle Giffords, recovery, miracles:

Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords has recovered enough from a bullet to the brain to ask for toast with breakfast.

Few details are available, but Pia Carusone, Giffords’ chief of staff, confirmed that the congresswoman made the verbal request on Monday when hospital workers at TIRR Memorial Hermann brought her a meal.

“The doctors say she is recovering at lightning speed considering her injury but they aren’t kidding when they say this is a marathon process,” Kelly wrote on Facebook. “There are encouraging signs every day, though.”

via Giffords speaks, asking for toast with breakfast – U.S. news – msnbc.com.

health care:  But Gabrielle Giffords costs are fully covered … many are not so fortunate.

What is clear, however, is that her care at one of the country’s top five rehab sites will be paid for through a federal workers compensation program, providing essentially unlimited time and money to help her regain cognitive, physical and social functions.

“What she’s needed, she’s gotten,” said Pia Carusone, Giffords’ chief of staff, who confirmed to msnbc.com that Giffords’ care after the Jan. 8 attack that killed six and injured 13 will be treated as a workplace injury.

via Brain injury victims struggle to find care – U.S. news – msnbc.com.

restaurants, farm-to-table, Boulder, Salt:  Add Salt to my Boulder list …

In every bite of a dish from Salt, one can taste a medley of flavors that impart more than just the delight of a quality, flavorful meal, but also a dedication to sustaining the ecology and businesses of Boulder.

Salt is one of the few restaurants in America that has fully immersed itself in the culture of farm-to-table dining, a culinary approach in which restaurants (and family kitchens) get their products from nearby farms, ranches and vendors, instead of ordering them from a corporate third party.

“The term farm-to-table is the shortest distance, the fewest hands, that it takes to get a vegetable from the ground to the table,” said Kevin Kidd, the executive chef at Salt. “It’s the farmer selling it and it going directly to the chef.”

Kidd said the benefits of farm-to-table dining go beyond a kitchen filled with fresh food, but also contribute to a sustainable environment and localized economy.

via From farm to table | CU Independent.

city v. country, culture, people watching:

Living in a rural setting exposes you to so many marvellous things—the natural world and the particular texture of small-town life, and the exhilarating experience of open space. I wish there were some way you could have all that and still be reminded of the wild array that we humans are. Instead, it seems like you can watch birds or people, but not both.

via Free Range: On the Wing : The New Yorker.

Egypt Uprising, Wael Ghonim:

In an exclusive interview with CNN, Ghonim also said it is “no longer the time to negotiate” with the regime of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.

“There’s a lot of blood now” that has been spilled, he said.

Ghonim played a key role in organizing the protests that have convulsed Egypt for more than two weeks. He was the administrator of a Facebook page that is widely credited with calling the first protest January 25.

“This is not about me,” he said several times during an hour-long and emotional interview in a relative’s Cairo apartment..

He conceded that President Hosni Mubarak has “sacrificed a lot” for Egypt but said the 82-year-old leader represents a system that needs to be replaced. He demanded that Mubarak’s ruling National Democratic Party be immediately dissolved. He also said, though, that Mubarak should be treated with dignity.

via Egyptian Google exec is ‘ready to die’ for change – CNN.com.

Apps, tv, Bones: So an App to enhance my tv watching of Bones … Of course I will try it, but I did not enjoy tweeting and tv-watching so I probably will not like this.

It’s the Bones hook-up we’ve been waiting for!

In an effort to enhance fans’ viewing experience, Fox has launched the Bones Show Companion, a new iPad app that will automatically synchronize with the current episode as its broadcast in each time zone to provide content that is both wholly unique and pretty freakin’ cool.

via Scoop: Fox Launches Bones App – TVLine.

cookbooks, comic books:  Funny … I think I can figure it out without the graphics!

According to the Strong Buzz, Amanda Cohen, the chef/owner of Dirt Candy, has signed a deal with publisher Clarkson Potter to create a cookbook disguised as a graphic novel.

via The Cookbook as Comic Book | The Food Section – Food News, Recipes, and More.

random, history, food, foodies: Just read it …

THE ROMAN HISTORIAN Livy famously regarded the glorification of chefs as the sign of a culture in decline. I wonder what he would have thought of The New York Times’ efforts to admit “young idols with cleavers” into America’s pantheon of food-service heroes.

With their swinging scabbards, muscled forearms and constant proximity to flesh, butchers have the raw, emotional appeal of an indie band … “Think about it. What’s sexy?” said Tia Keenan, the fromager at Casellula Cheese and Wine Café and an unabashed butcher fan. “Dangerous is sometimes sexy, and they are generally big guys with knives who are covered in blood.”

That’s Severson again, by the way, and she records no word of dissent in regard to the cheese vendor’s ravings. We are to believe this is a real national trend here. In fact the public perception of butchers has not changed in the slightest, as can easily be confirmed by telling someone that he or she looks like one. “Blankly as a butcher stares,” Auden’s famous line about the moon, will need no explanatory footnote even a century from now.

Whether gluttony is a deadly sin is of course for the religious to decide, and I hope they go easy on the foodies; they’re not all bad. They are certainly single-minded, however, and single-mindedness—even in less obviously selfish forms—is always a littleness of soul.

via The Moral Crusade Against Foodies – Magazine – The Atlantic.

statistics, economics, men v. women:  We still have a long way to go, baby!

Young women are outpacing men in educational attainment and there’s little sign males will make up ground any time soon.

Nearly one in four women had earned a bachelor’s degree by the time they reached age 23, compared to just one in seven men, the Labor Department said Wednesday. And while a growing share of professions are expected to require a college education in the future, men don’t appear poised to make up the education gap.

via Women Likely to Continue Outpacing Men in Education – Real Time Economics – WSJ.

random, Apps, faith and spirituality:

A new application being sold on iTunes, “Confession: a Roman Catholic App,” cannot be used as a substitute for confession with a priest, the Vatican said Wednesday. The application was developed by American entrepreneurs with the help of two priests and the blessing of a bishop. It features a questionnaire of sins, and is promoted as a tool both to revive interest in confession and to help Catholics prepare for the sacrament. But some media reports cast the app as a “virtual priest” for Catholics who do not have time for church, prompting the Rev. Federico Lombardi, the Vatican spokesman, to respond, “One cannot speak in any way of ‘confession by iPhone.’ ”

via App Can’t Replace Confession, Vatican Says – NYTimes.com.

Bless me father for I have sinned. It has been 300 tweets since my last confession.

Whether you’ve been “borrowing” free Wi-Fi or coveting your neighbor’s avatar — or, heaven forbid, something worse — a new mobile app is designed to help you atone for it.

Lame tech jokes aside, the makers of “Confession: A Roman Catholic App” say their software is seriously designed to help believers with the sacrament, and to help those who have left the church take a digital step back home.

Worry not, faithful Catholics: The $1.99 application, for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, is not intended to replace the confessional. Instead, it’s designed to complement the act of confession, offering a “personal examination of conscience” (password-protected, of course) and a step-by-step guide to sin-confessing.

via New app helps Catholics confess on the go – CNN.com.

faith and spirituality, Christianity, culture: Very interesting article …

More and more Christians choose a church not on the basis of its denomination, but on the basis of more practical matters. Is the nursery easy to find? Do I like the music? Are there support groups for those grappling with addiction?

This trend is a natural extension of the American evangelical experiment. After all, evangelicalism is about the fundamental message of Christianity—the evangel, the gospel, literally the “good news” of God’s kingdom arriving in Jesus Christ—not about denomination building.

If denominationalism simply denotes a “brand” vying for market share, then let denominationalism fall. But many of us believe denominations can represent fidelity to living traditions of local congregations that care about what Jesus cared about—personal conversion, discipleship, mission and community. Perhaps the denominational era has just begun.

via Russell D. Moore: Where Have All the Presbyterians Gone? – WSJ.com.

health, health care, globalization, technology, history:  A little history of epidemics and a modern-day use of technology to help detect new viruses …

That’s why it’s so welcome to see the launch of the new Predict project, an online mapping tool that will allow scientists to track outbreaks of animals diseases that could threaten human beings. Funded by the U. S. Agency for International Development (USAID) — and led by a group of institutions, including the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and the innovative new Global Viral Forecasting Initiative (GVFI) — the system will monitor data from World Health Organization alerts, news reports, online message boards for epidemiologists, to create a digital map of where animal outbreaks are occurring around the world and where they might threaten human beings.

The consortium was put together in 2009, during the H1N1 pandemic, and the hope is that a better information tracking system will help scientists avoid being caught off guard. As Damien Joly of the WCS told the New York Times:

We strongly believe in public access to the data we collect. It doesn’t do public health much good to collect data and let it sit while it awaits publication.

The Predict tool (download a PDF about the project here) is just the latest indication that the global human health community is finally beginning to take animal disease seriously. That hasn’t always been the case — just compare the vast World Health Organization to its relatively tiny animal counterpart, the World Organization for Animal Health. But nearly 75% of all new, emerging or reemerging diseases affecting human beings in the 21st century originated in animals, including HIV/AIDS, SARS and influenza.

What’s needed is a “one health” approach of the sort pioneered by Nathan Wolfe of the GFVI, who patrols areas in the deep developing world where humans and animals closely overlap. We may not be able to stop the next flu pandemic or new emerging disease as it passed from animals to human beings — but we should know when it happens.

via USAID’s Predict Tool Will Help Scientists Keep Track of Animal Disease Outbreaks—and Protect People – TIME Healthland.

college, heart-strings, Wake Forest University, kudos: What a great story … kudos, Coach Walter!

Wake Forest baseball coach Tom Walter has donated a kidney to a freshman player who suffers from a disease that can lead to kidney failure.

Both Walter and outfielder Kevin Jordan were recovering Tuesday in an Atlanta hospital one day after the transplant was performed.

“For us, it’s almost like it’s been divine intervention,” Jordan’s father Keith told The Associated Press in a telephone interview Tuesday from Atlanta.

Dr. Kenneth Newell, the lead surgeon on the team that removed Walter’s kidney, said in a statement issued Tuesday by Wake Forest that he expects Walter and Jordan to recover fully.

The school says the recovery time for both the 42-year-old Walter and Jordan is expected to be several months. Walter said it will be two months before he is back to normal. Keith Jordan says his son could swing a bat again in 6-8 weeks, and he expects Kevin to enroll in summer school in June and prepare for the fall semester.

via Baseball Coach Donates Kidney to Star Player – CBS News.

quotes, happiness quotes:

“Love takes up where knowledge leaves off.” Saint Thomas Aquinas

via Twitter / @DailyLit: “Love takes up where knowl ….

Davidson College, literature: Sounds interesting.

For his latest novel, Davidson College’s Alan Michael Parker got a big helping of inspiration from The Home Depot.

Parker’s new literary comedy, “Whale Man” (WordFarm; $18), is about a guy who builds a life-sized wooden whale on his mother’s front lawn.

via Davidson professor’s new novel is a whale of a tale – CharlotteObserver.com.

green:

How it works? The station’s ventilation system includes heat exchangers that convert all that excess warmth into hot water. That water is then pumped to the nearby building, where it reportedly reduces energy costs by as much as 25 percent.

via Commuters’ surplus body heat used to warm office building – Springwise.

food, food regulation:  The incredible edible egg is better, but still not incredible.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced Tuesday that in its routine reevaluations of the nutritional content of foods, it discovered that domestic chicken eggs — which hadn’t been looked at since 2002 — has had something of a nutritional makeover.

Compared with the egg of 2002, the current-day egg has 14% less cholesterol and 64% more vitamin D. A large egg now has 185 mg of cholesterol and 41 IU of Vitamin D, down from 212 mg of cholesterol and up from 18 IU of Vitamin D. It also still contains 70 calories and 6 g of protein. (More on TIME.com: Is School Lunch Making Your Kids Fat?)

via The Updated Egg: Less Cholesterol, But Is It a ‘Healthy’ Food? – TIME Healthland.

The President, USA, high-speed rail:  This may be worthy of federal money in my opinion … may.

U.S. passenger trains are, quite simply, a global laughingstock. Most of them travel at speeds that were common a century ago. Meanwhile, bullet trains have been zipping around Western Europe and East Asia for years, China is building more high-speed rail than the rest of the world combined, and even countries like Morocco and Brazil are getting into the game. “It works everywhere else in the world,” says Alstom Transport vice president Chuck Wochele, whose French firm is one of 30 train manufacturers that have pledged to build or expand U.S. factories if they land high-speed contracts. “Unfortunately, it’s been politicized in the U.S.”

via High-Speed Rail: Obama Pledges $53 Billion for Upgrades – TIME.

quotes, happiness quotes:

“Whoever is happy will make others happy too.”

— Anne Frank

via The Happiness Project, Moment of Happiness. Gretchen Rubin.

quotes, random, LOL:

NCIS rerun quote: “Love means never having to read her her Miranda rights.” – Abbie 🙂

via NCIS rerun quote:….

09
Feb
11

2.9.2011 … only my hairdresser knows for sure … otherwise a very random day.

Davidson College, changes: Hooray for another new dorm … congrats to 7 new profs … but no SNU Lake.:(  … Board of Trustees Discusses Building Plans, Tuition Increases and Promotes 7 Professors – The Davidsonian – News.

gLee, Katie Courid, UVA:  Katie Couric went to UVA. I bet that is where she learned the crazy moves like the pretzel!  YouTube – GLEE – Katie Couric is a GLEEk!.

… “We did a little dance. I was supposed to lead, but she ended up leading me around, and showing me all these crazy moves like the pretzel. Shes good. Shes a good little dancer.”  Matthew Morrison (Will Schuester, gLee)

Jules Verne, inventions, birthdays: Happy 183, JV!

Jules Verne 183rd birthday picture: Similar to Jules Verne's imagined Nautilus submarine, the underwater submersible Alvin explores the seafloor.

As made interactively evident by a retro-futuristic Google doodle, Tuesday would have been the 183rd birthday of Jules Verne. Had he lived to see 2011, the French science fiction writer also would have seen many of his fanciful inventions made real—more or less.

In perhaps his most famous novel, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, Verne’s Captain Nemo travels the world’s oceans in a giant electric submarine, the Nautilus—the inspiration for the portholed Jules Verne Google doodle.

8 Jules Verne Inventions That Came True (Pictures).

business, csr, politics, Mitt Romney:  It’s interesting that this article seems to support indirectly that  the bottom line is the only that that should govern corporate decision-making.

But there does seem to be a method to Marriott’s madness. Politico’s Ben Smith explains that Mitt Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts and a presumptive candidate for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012, recently left the Marriott board. The chain’s owners are “longtime Romney supporters”, Mr Smith notes. And social conservatives, apparently, hit Mr Romney hard on the porn “issue” during the ex-governor’s 2008 campaign for the GOP nomination. (One critic called Mr Romney a “major pornographer.”) So in some sense, Mr Smith argues, Marriott appears to be doing Mr Romney a “costly favor.” Then again:

Another person familiar with the workings of the industry, though, cast doubt on the connection: The in-room movie business has been hit hard by wifi, Netflix, iPads, and laptops, and the structure of contracts with providers could well have made it a solid economic decision.

Labour unions, at least, seem convinced that Marriott is throwing Mr Romney a bone. Eddie Vale, a spokesman for the AFL-CIO, emailed reporters last week to mock the Marriott-Romney-smut connection (via Mr Smith):

Now when it comes to folks who actually work for a living—and negotiating on their wages, benefits, etc—we always hear the mantra ‘we must maximize revenue and value for the shareholders’. Interesting how this pillar of corporate philosophy seems to have gone right out the window when it comes to helping their billionaire buddy’s presidential campaign.

Are Mr Vale and Mr Smith on to something? Or is Marriott just making a normal business decision?

via Hotel pornography: Marriott, Mitt Romney, and porn | The Economist.

pets, inventions: Funny, but if my dogs figured this thing out, they would be FAT!  Amazon.com: The Amazing Treat Machine Interactive Dog Toy: Kitchen & Dining.

urban planning, Jane Jacobs, Davidson College, kith/kin:  Ran across this and it reminded me of how much I enjoyed Jane Jacobs work as a student and talking about her works with my husband’s grandfather, Dali Walte

The 2011 Jane Jacobs Medal Nomination Form

Thank you for your interest in the 2011 Jane Jacobs Medal. Please fill out the form below to submit your nomination. The Jane Jacobs Medal will be given each year to two living individuals – one for Lifetime Leadership and the other for New Ideas and Activism – whose creative vision for the urban environment has greatly contributed to the vitality of New York City and who exemplify the following values and ideas:

* Open our eyes to new ways of seeing and understanding our city

* Challenge traditional assumptions and conventional thinking

* Advance a creative use of neighborhood knowledge

* Promote Jacobsean principles of dynamism, density, diversity and equity

* Take a common-sense approach to solving complex problems

* Generate new principles for the way we think about development and preservation in New York City

* Demonstrate activism and innovative cross-disciplinary thinking

* Provide leadership in solving common problems

* Generate creative uses of the urban environment

* Make New York City a place of hope and expectation that attracts new people and new ideas.

via Jane Jacobs Medal :: The Rockefeller Foundation.

random, politics, kith/kin: I read this and it just reminded me of my father’s friendships with many “liberals”; he was conservative.  They were able to remain love and respect for each other despite very different political and social views.  Why does this not seem possible now?  The death of Daniel Bell, sociologist of capitalism: Daniel Bell, non-neocon | The Economist.

travel, Hollywood, Los Angeles, history: I would so do this!

As he drove he shared a little history of the Hollywoodand area. It was established as a housing development in early 1920s and specialized in building storybook fantasy houses: castles, Tudor homes, and the like. The Hollywood sign was erected as an advertisement for the development project and read “Hollywoodland.” It was meant to stay up for just a year, but people liked it and it soon became a symbol for the motion picture industry, not just the housing development. The neighborhood has been the home of many famous folks, including Aldous Huxley, Bugsy Siegel, Humphrey Bogart, Gloria Swanson, and James M. Cain.

via Hiking up the outdoor staircases of Hollywoodland – Boing Boing.

business, groupon:  Same article as above … but this tidbit included … anyone tried Groupon, yet?  I have and have been very pleased.

But then he offered a deal on a Groupon-like site I can’t remember which one and 1700 people signed up for tours. Now he’s very busy, conducting 2-3 tours per day.

via Hiking up the outdoor staircases of Hollywoodland – Boing Boing.

iPad, Apple:  OK, I want one …

Apple Inc. has started manufacturing a new version of its iPad tablet computer with a built-in camera and faster processor, said people familiar with the matter.

The new iPad will be thinner and lighter than the first model, these people said. It will have at least one camera on the front of the device for features like video-conferencing, but the resolution of the display will be similar to the first iPad, these people said. It will also have more memory and a more powerful graphics processor, they said.

..The one feature in the new iPad that may disappoint consumers will be the lack of significant improvement in the resolution of the device’s display. People familiar with the situation said Apple has had trouble improving the display technology, in part because of the iPad screen’s larger size compared with the iPhone.

via Apple’s New iPad in Production – WSJ.com.

Internet:  I have put up the white flag …

That the reality of machines can outpace the imagination of magic, and in so short a time, does tend to lend weight to the claim that the technological shifts in communication we’re living with are unprecedented. It isn’t just that we’ve lived one technological revolution among many; it’s that our technological revolution is the big social revolution that we live with. The past twenty years have seen a revolution less in morals, which have remained mostly static, than in means: you could already say “fuck” on HBO back in the eighties; the change has been our ability to tweet or IM or text it. The set subject of our novelists is information; the set obsession of our dons is what it does to our intelligence.

via How the Internet Gets Inside Us : The New Yorker.

Super Bowl XLV, advertising, Detroit:  As I said this was my favorite.  I am glad it was successful.

If you haven’t seen the two-minute commercial that Chrysler Group LLC ran during the Super Bowl on Sunday, it’s worth taking a look.

The spot, featuring a brief appearance by Detroit-based rapper Eminem, has gone viral, racking up more than 3.5 million views on YouTube and occupying hours of sports-talk time on radio stations across the country. According to market researchers who tracked the impact of Super Bowl commercials, the Chrysler ad sparked a dramatic spike in online shopping for the company’s models.

via Eminem Super Bowl Ad Sparks Lasting Buzz For Chrysler – Speakeasy – WSJ.

Supreme Court, Constitutional Law, health care, Justice Kennedy, Justice Sotomayor, Justice Kagan:  Good question …

Maybe it all does come down to whether Justice Kennedy eats chicken or fish for dinner one evening in 2012. But isn’t it a little presumptuous, perhaps even a mite sexist, to suppose we already know the minds of Justices Sotomayor and Kagan, and that nothing anyone might write or say from now through the time the question is considered by the Supreme Court could change them?

via Judges and ideology: Telepathic Supreme Court vote counting | The Economist.

culture, Lindsay Lohan:  She was so cute in Parent Trap. Enough said.

The actress Lindsay Lohan can now add the prospect of a grand theft charge to her legal woes.

via Lohan Faces Felony Theft Charge – NYTimes.com.

politics, Egypt Uprising, The President, President Bush:  Another interesting perspective …

That possibility now faces Mr Obama as the old order in Egypt changes. What if the new one eventually delivers the greatest of the Arab nations into the patient hands of a hostile Muslim Brotherhood? That fear gives even some neocons pause. And such questions will continue to plague America for as long as it aspires to be both a superpower and a champion of democracy and self-determination. It is a riddle to which neither Mr Bush nor Mr Obama nor any president has found a neat answer.

via Lexington: Was George Bush right? | The Economist.

random, internet auctions:  I get this spam all the time.  It is nice to have it explained.

Anybody who has a computer and an Internet connection has probably seen ads touting deals like those above. They come from “penny auction” sites, a Web phenomenon that has spurred hundreds of start-ups over the past year.

As consumers eager for deals help fuel the rise of these sites, consumer advocates stress the adage, “If something seems too good to be true, it probably is.” Users can actually spend hundreds of dollars on these sites without winning a thing.

Penny auctions, believed to have started in Europe, operate very differently from other auction sites such as eBay.

via Penny auctions promise savings, overlook downsides – USATODAY.com.

green, wind farms: The first picture is of the wind farm in the English Channel.  I flew over it in September and it is truly massive.  I had no idea how big an area they covered or how big the “wind mills” are.

The world’s largest offshore wind farm officially opened today in the English Channel 12 kilometers (7.4 miles) from Foreness Point, off England’s southeast coast.

Owned and operated by the Swedish energy giant Vattenfall, the Thanet Offshore Wind Farm has 100 turbines and covers an area of 35 square kilometers (13.5 square miles).

Boat cruises past the new Thanet wind farm in the English Channel. (Photo courtesy Vattenfall)

With 300 megawatts of generating capacity, the wind farm will generate electricity equivalent to the annual consumption of more than 200,000 British households.

via World’s Largest Offshore Wind Farm Opens in English Channel.

green, wind farms, USA:  So it will be interesting to see them off the US coast.

The Interior Department said it will expedite environmental reviews for four wind projects off the coasts of Virginia, Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey. This spring, it expects to identify other wind energy areas off Massachusetts, Rhode Island and the South Atlantic region, notably North Carolina.

“This initiative will spur the type of innovation that will help us create new jobs, build a clean energy future and compete and win in the technologies of the 21st century,” Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said in the announcement, which notes President Obama’s goal of generating 80% of U.S. electricity from clean energy sources by 2035.

Wind advocates called for a streamlined process after it took eight years for the Cape Wind project off Cape Cod, Mass., to obtain a lease as the nation’s first offshore wind farm. That project faced opposition from Indian tribes, some environmentalists and residents, who argued it threatened marine life and ruined ocean views.

Salazar said the wind farms identified Monday — all off major tourist destinations, including Atlantic City, N.J.; Ocean City, Md.; and Virginia Beach, Va. — would be 10 to 20 miles offshore so they shouldn’t mar vacationers’ views, according to the Associated Press.

via Obama fast-tracks Mid-Atlantic offshore wind energy – Green House – USATODAY.com.

 

08
Feb
11

2.8.2011 … great day … BSF … Isaiah is really interesting … and lunch with an old friend.

college, culture, Great Recession:  The economy is changing drinking by college freshman.  Very interesting.

The tough economy appears to be having a sobering effect — literally — on incoming college freshmen. Some new surveys of high school students suggest increasing numbers are beginning college as teetotalers.

* More incoming college freshmen have abstained from alcohol, polls find.

Outside the Classroom, an organization that provides alcohol education training at colleges, finds that since 2006, the percentage of incoming freshmen who abstain from alcohol has jumped from 38% to 62%.

“It’s a demographic trend among students,” CEO Brandon Busteed says. His organization surveys about a third of freshmen entering four-year universities and colleges each year.

Why the number of teetotaling 18-year-olds is up isn’t clear. Busteed says the economy is a big reason. Students “are taking (college) more seriously because they realize it’s their future,” he says.

via Polls: Young non-drinkers up in down economy – USATODAY.com.

Super Bowl XLV, National Anthem, Christina Aguilera, flubs:  I can’t criticize.  My third grade music teacher gave me an f on a report card because I could not memorize it.

Christina Aguilera’s lyric malfunction on Super Bowl Sunday scored plenty of Internet ire and water-cooler debate Monday, leaving the five-time Grammy winner the latest celebrity skewered for muffing the national anthem.

Christina Aguilera’s flub of the national anthem at Sunday’s Super Bowl has become a national item of discussion.The Star-Spangled Banner has stumped plenty of singers, and a recent Harris Poll found that two-thirds of Americans don’t know the lyrics. But the song has been especially embarrassing for high-profile entertainers.

via Christina Aguilera is not alone in anthem flub club – USATODAY.com.

media, journalism, Keith Olbermann:  That did not take long …

Former MSNBC television personality Keith Olbermann, who departed the cable news network in January, is expected to announce on Tuesday that he’s joining the public affairs channel Current TV, The New York Times reports.

Because Olbermann’s exit from MSNBC includes a clause that prohibits him from joining another TV outlet for an undetermined amount of time, it’s not clear when he’d be starting at Current TV. But it appears that the move has been in the works for some time. According to the Times, the Internet domain name TheOlbermannShow.com was registered two days before his on-air announcement that he was leaving MSNBC.

Olbermann’s arrival could boost Current TV’s profile. The cable channel, which counts former vice president Al Gore among its founders, is currently only available in about 60 million homes.

Olbermann’s departure from MSNBC came after he’d brought big ratings — and big controversy — to the network. The former ESPN sports anchor’s nightly Countdown show was by far MSNBC’s biggest ratings draw, but in November he was suspended for making political contributions to candidates in Kentucky and Arizona.

via Report: Keith Olbermann to join Current TV – USATODAY.com.

Bible, culture, sex:  Interesting.

Yet in a democracy, even those who speak “heresies” are allowed a voice. And whether readers accept Coogan’s and Knust’s interpretations, the authors are justified in their insistence that a population so divided over questions of sex and sexual morality cannot—should not—cede the field without exploring first what the Bible actually says. The eminent Bible historian Elaine Pagels agrees. To read the Bible and reflect on it “is to realize that we have not a series of answers, but a lot of questions.”

via What the Bible Really Says About Sex – Newsweek.

psychiatry/psychology, anxiety:  I can’t imagine being addicted to feeling anxious …

“Some people,” he adds, “get addicted to feeling anxious because that’s the state that they’ve always known. If they feel a sense of calm, they get bored; they feel empty inside. They want to feel anxious.” Notice he didn’t say “like.”

via Why Some People Choose Anxiety – Newsweek.

Super Bowl XLV:  He will never live this one down …

GREEN BAY, Wis. (NBC) — Last week a hospital in Pittsburgh wrapped their newborns with “Terrible Towels” and placed Steeler caps on their heads.

It is time to meet their opponent.

The babies of Saint Vincent hospital in Green Bay were wrapped in “Titletown Towels” and Packers fleece blankets.

Of course, the outfit wouldn’t be complete without their very own Cheesehead.

The real game is Sunday in Arlington, Texas when the Packers and Steelers tangle in Super Bowl XLV.

via WCSH6.com | Portland, ME | Green Bay hospital outfits new arrivals in Packers gear.

Great Recession, marriage, USA:

Americans without a college degree bore the brunt of the recent recession, and so did their marriages, according to a new report by researchers at the University of Virginia.

The “Survey of Marital Generosity,” conducted on behalf of U-Va.’s Marriage Project, found that 29 percent of couples reported that the economic downturn had put financial stress on their marriages.

At the same time, about a third of the couples surveyed said the recession had prompted them to work harder on saving their marriage – a finding that the report’s author described as one of two “silver linings” to the longest economic downturn since the Great Depression. It’s unclear whether those couples might have had more stable marriages to begin with.

via Study shows recession has weighed heavily on American marriages.

architecture, recycle, Eero Saarinen, NYC:  I think it looks like the Jetsons.  I am not sure I want to stay at a boutique hotel at the airport … but someone might.

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An airline terminal at John F. Kennedy International Airport that started as a jet-age architectural icon but has become a security-age relic could be reopened as a boutique hotel.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is looking for developers to turn the vacant Trans World Airlines Flight Center into the centerpiece of a small, high-end hotel that would allow the agency to reopen the terminal and recoup some of the money it spent restoring it.

The long-vacant TWA terminal would be part of a boutique hotel under the Port Authority’s plan.

The curving, winged terminal opened in 1962 at what was then Idlewild Airport. It became a symbol of the glamour of air travel. Its designer, Eero Saarinen, is considered a master of midcentury modernist architecture. Among his other works are St. Louis’s Gateway Arch and Manhattan’s CBS headquarters.

via Hotel Plan Set for Ghost Terminal – WSJ.com.

quotes:

“There can be no joy in living without joy in work.”

— St. Thomas Aquinas

via The Happiness Project, Moment of Happiness. Gretchen Rubin.

Egypt Uprising, Wael Ghonim, news:  I had a sneaking suspicion that this was big …

Wael Ghonim, a Google marketing executive for the Middle East, is free following his release by Egyptian authorities 12 days after he disappeared in Cairo.

Ghonim, 30, an Egyptian based in Dubai, sobbed throughout an emotional TV interview with Dream 2 TV. He said he was not tortured, was treated with respect and was surprised to be branded a traitor by security forces.

“This is the revolution of the youth of the Internet and now the revolution of all Egyptians,” he said. “Anyone with good intentions is the traitor.”

Google declined to comment except to issue a statement: “It is a huge relief that Wael Ghonim has been released. We send our best wishes to him and his family.”

via Egypt releases activist, Google executive – USATODAY.com.

Wael Ghonim is talkative and confident, just like many in the new generation of Arabs out to change their world — and prosper in it — by way of technology. He has pointed out that Norway, so much smaller than the Mideast in population, had more indigenous language content on the web. There was so much room to grow. “We live in a digital age, and it is important that the Arab world takes advantage of this new medium,” Ghonim told an Abu Dhabi paper.

I’ve met him briefly on a couple of occasions here in Dubai, where the expatriate Egyptian lived and worked as Google’s head of marketing for the Middle East and North Africa. Slim and sanding a little more than average height, Ghonim, 30, is typical of the new guard: speaking English with an American accent but audibly Arab when he pronounces Arabic words. He is at ease in both worlds. (See TIME’s special report “The Middle East in Revolt.”)

But, in spite of his career achievements and comfortable life, he also chose to be part of a hidden, more dangerous world — one in which he sought to activate change in his homeland. After he returned to Egypt, that work would thrust him into prison for more than 10 days and, when he emerged, he was suddenly hailed by some as the leader of the faceless group of youthful revolutionaries credited with getting the uprising against President Hosni Mubarak off the ground.

via Egypt’s New Hero: Can Google Activist Wael Ghonim Overthrow Mubarak? – TIME.

quotes, BSF, Bible:  My favorite from this week’s BSF lesson, Isaiah 41 … and I have to say I really enjoyed this week’s lesson.

8 “But you, Israel, my servant,

Jacob, whom I have chosen,

you descendants of Abraham my friend,

9 I took you from the ends of the earth,

from its farthest corners I called you.

I said, ‘You are my servant’;

I have chosen you and have not rejected you.

10 So do not fear, for I am with you;

do not be dismayed, for I am your God.

I will strengthen you and help you;

I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

via Isaiah 41 – Passage Lookup – New International Version, ©2010 – BibleGateway.com.




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