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Soapbox Saturday: The Yes Men

Wow! Talk about telling the truth where it really matters.  The Yes Men aren’t really pranksters so much as whistleblowers.  Dressing up as VIPs and crashing press conferences and meetings, they actually tell the truth about starving children, toxic waste and the general rape of planet Earth, nature and humanity by the insatiable devouring of everything in sight to maximize profits for shareholders as required by law.  … Read the rest

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Wild Friday: Viruses And Other Dirty Tricks

NBC News revealed slides instructing spy agencies how to  “release computer viruses, spy on journalists and diplomats, jam phones and computers, and use sex to lure targets into ‘honey traps’” in order to “go on offense and attack adversaries.” Slides leaked by Edward Snowden focused on a secret branch within the GCHQ called the Joint Threat Research and Intelligence Group (JTRIG) specializing in  “dirty tricks,” “propaganda,” and “false flag” operations used to spy on “suspected terrorists” and “criminals” as well as diplomats, journalists, activists.… Read the rest

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Thirsty Thursday: The Wizard of Wacky World

Here’s the full story that ran in the Pinellas Reader:

Dreary Florida warehouses may be the modern equivalent of Dorothy’s
prairie grey, and they are as numerous as Kansan cornfields where the
Pinellas county line meets Tampa Road.  But step inside Bruce Barry’s
Wacky World and you are in a land of fantasy every bit as astounding as
L.… Read the rest

Techy Tuesday: Kitty Robot

Who needs to deal with a litterbox when you can have a cat that runs on batteries!  Thanks to the design of its legs, which faithfully mimic feline morphology, EPFL’s four-legged “cheetah-cub robot” shares the advantages of its biological model: it is small, light and runs very fast.… Read the rest

Occupy Wall Street Activists Mark 2 Year Anniversary Of Movement

Soapbox Saturday: Where is the Outcry?

With a tanking economy, out of control spending and utter disregard for the future one might expect social concerns to drive people to the streets in protest.  So where are they? Robert Reich says three reasons stand out.  First, the working class is terrified of losing what little they have left; second, students are afraid of ruining chances for a job; third, Americans are just cynical and have given up on meaningful change. … Read the rest

Wild Friday: Prancing Elites

Valentine’s Day Fun: Outrage erupted in an Alabama town when the Prancing Elites, all-male dance troupe was mistakenly asked to perform.  Oh well!

Predictably, some spectators were “outraged and appalled.” More interestingly, for enduring the jeers and stares in Semmes, the Elites got a wave of support from social media, gigs for New Year’s Eve and Mardi Gras, and a new Kickstarter campaign – “Society hates us, but the world loves us.” The biggest loser here: The Friends of Semmes have been removed as organizers of the Christmas parade.… Read the rest

Thirsty Thursday: Gym Advice?

You probably know I started going to the gym almost every day a couple of years ago.  And as you may imagine, one of the things I never ever expected to learn was “How to Pick Up a Girl At The Gym!”  Right? … Read the rest

Mother Earth Monday: Chimpanzee Mega-Culture

Get a glimpse of the Bili-Uele forest chimp mega-culture in new video from “one of the few places left on Earth with a huge continuous population of chimps.” Cleve Hicks, a primatologist based at the Max Planck Institute says the group is probably the largest in Africa.… Read the rest

Human Sunday: Flannery O’Connor Quote

“Every morning between 9 and 12, I go to my room and sit before a piece of paper. Many times, I just sit for three hours with no ideas coming to me. But I know one thing. If an idea does come between 9 and 12 I am there ready for it.”

Flannery O’Connor… Read the rest

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Soapbox Saturday: RustyRocket Wants A Utopian Revolution

When asked to edit an issue of the New Statesman, Russel Brand posited

Total revolution of consciousness and our entire social, political and economic system is what interests me, but that’s not on the ballot. Is utopian revolution possible? The freethinking social architect Buckminster Fuller said humanity now faces a choice: oblivion or utopia.… Read the rest

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Wild Friday: Orwells Worst Nightmare

Mikko Hypponen points out, Orwell “was an optimist.” Orwell never imagined the NSA would amass billions of our phone calls and 200 million of our text messages every day and read the our emails and live chats agrees Marjorie Cohen.

She says in 1774, in a petition to King George III, Congress protested against the colonial officers’ unlimited power of search and seizure.… Read the rest

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Worldwide Wednesday: Chile’s Socialist “Internet”

Decades before DOT COM, there was Project Cybersyn, “a ‘nervous system’ for the economy in which workers, community members and the government were to be connected together transmitting the resources they had on offer, their desires and needs via an interactive national communications network.… Read the rest

Techy Tuesday: Can the ‘Dark Mail Alliance’ Restore E-mail Privacy?

The founders of shuttered e-mail services Silent Mail and Lavabit — the latter used by NSA leaker Edward Snowden — want to bring easy-to-use, snoop-proof e-mail to everyone. Can it be done?  Today I share a video from Lavabit explaining why they closed their services rather than give up the keys to your computer to the Federal Government.  … Read the rest

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Woldwide Wednesday: Who Owns The Government?

Who really pays congressmen to write and pass the laws we all live by?  OpenSecrets.org reveals the lobbyists, PACS and Interest Groups and how they pull the strings .The OpenSecrets Center’s mission is to:

  • Inform citizens about how money in politics affects their lives
  • Empower voters and activists by providing unbiased information
  • Advocate for a transparent and responsive government

We pursue our mission largely through our award-winning website, OpenSecrets.org, which is the most comprehensive resource for federal campaign contributions, lobbying data and analysis available anywhere.… Read the rest

Two women operating ENIAC: The "ENIAC Girls"

Techy Tuesday: When Chicks Ruled Computers

Hooray for my niece who changed her focus from culinary to computers. Today I share this article showing how women used to rule the industry.  Seems they are good at planning and management and stuff.

How Guy Geeks Beat Out Computer Chicks

Asked to picture a computer programmer, most of us describe the archetypal computer geek, a brilliant but socially-awkward male.

Read the rest

Small scale organic farms

Mother Earth Monday: Small Scale Organic

Tthe United Nations is once again explaining the urgent need to return to a more sustainable, natural and organic system. That was the key point of a publication from the UN Commission on Trade and Development “Trade and Environment Review 2013: Wake Up Before It’s Too Late,” which included contributions from more than 60 experts who insist major changes are needed in our food, agriculture and trade systems, and a dramatic shift toward local small-scale diversified farms. … Read the rest

Soapbox Saturday: NSFW Pope Song

I love Tim Minchin as a clever social commentator.  He reminds me of a modern, foul-mouthed Tom Lehrer with his witty ball-busting ballads.  But clearly this song came out before the latest pope started showing a different sort of compassion.   But does the new pope really represent “no more business as usual?”  Watch this interview on ABC news wherein a victim of church abuse expresses hopes that the new pope’s choice of names and his history of humility will work to repair hundreds of years of damage, the clear inspiration for Mr.… Read the rest

Wild Friday: Still Unsolved WGN Hacked by Max Headroom!

Wild Friday:  In 1987, somebody hacked the signal of Chicago’s WGN-TV. 25 years later, Vice’s Motherboard blog has published a fascinating investigation into who pulled off the still unsolved crime. Swing over there for a bunch of videos (including the non -elated but amusingly titled Naked Hippo show for kids.) The mysterious hacker interrupted the news at 9:14 PM on Nov 22 1987 wearing a  mask a mask of cult fictional British VJ.  … Read the rest

fascinating and much-overdue dig into a piece of hacker lore

Thirsty Thursday: Escape into art

 

Would you like to get away from it all on your very own imaginary island? Artist Lee Mathers has just the place for you!  Visit The Commonwealth of New Island, and get your dream home in one of his paintings like this one:

His web site has this bio:

Beaches, waves, and the ocean’s energy have never ceased to fascinate and enchant this artist.

Read the rest