ltmurnau: (Default)
Influential journal blasts Tory government's 'disregard for science'

Facts are simple and facts are straight
Facts are lazy and facts are late
Facts all come with points of view
Facts don't do what I want them to
Facts just twist the truth around
Facts are living turned inside out
Facts are getting the best of them
Facts are nothing on the face of things
Facts don't stain the furniture
Facts go out and slam the door
Facts are written all over your face
Facts continue to change their shape
ltmurnau: (Default)
Okay, I did not see the TV circus that happened when The Tigers Broke Free, it was a little article stuck on the top of page 4 or so when I looked at the paper on Boxing Day. Now, the only online news story I've looked at says the tiger, um, "had help" getting out because one of one of its victims was dangling a leg into its enclosure.

The whole story is here if you want to look at it, but if true this seems to be a pretty good example of "culling" in action.
ltmurnau: (Default)
Iranian woman caught in legal limbo detained at Vancouver airport

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/british-columbia/story/2007/03/15/kamalfar-family.html

Short summary:

Iranian woman and her two children flee Iran in 2004 after her husband was executed and she was jailed for attending an anti-government political rally. Using false documents, she intends to enter Canada via Germany and Russia, but gets snagged in Frankfurt, bumped to Russia, interpreter problems, she and the kids stay in a motel in Moscow under house arrest for 4 months. In May/June of 2006 the Russian authorities leave them at Moscow airport for the next 11 months, where they sleep on the floor and beg food from the airport workers. This week the federal government decides to let them in as government-sponsored immigrants, her plane lands and her supporters and relatives do not see her - she is detained for smoking on the plane!

[edit: she was only detained for an hour, but there are some things up with which Canadians will not put....]
ltmurnau: (Default)
Really folks, I could not make this stuff up if I tried - and I don't.

Colombian rebels ask Denzel Washington to help broker hostage exchange

Last Updated: Friday, November 10, 2006 | 1:00 PM ET
CBC Arts

Colombia's largest rebel group is seeking support from an unusual source in its effort to negotiate an exchange of imprisoned guerrillas for hostages: Hollywood actor Denzel Washington and directors Oliver Stone and Michael Moore.

Read more... )
ltmurnau: (Default)
***

Critter causes downtown power cut

Times Colonist, Wednesday, July 12, 2006

A squirrel skirting along electricity lines caused a major power outage in downtown Victoria Tuesday.

The squirrel touched both the hydro line and transformer at Gladstone and Shakespeare streets in Victoria just after 1 p.m., causing a fire and power outage to about 2,000 customers -- including government offices, businesses and residences, said B.C. Hydro spokesman for Vancouver Island, Ted Olynyk.

At one B.C. government office alone, at 800 Johnson St., about 400 people were evacuated.

Victoria police Const. Brent Burger said the power outage caused havoc on downtown streets because several intersections were without traffic lights along Quadra Street at View, Fort and Johnson streets.

"There was a total light failure, so all of the intersections turned into four-way stops," Burger said. There were no accidents as a result, he said.

"There were just a lot of frustrated people."

The squirrel died.

***

Italics mine. My office wasn't evacuated, but I did get a picture of the squirrel's gainfully employed brother-in-law:

ltmurnau: (Default)
Yeah, I know, but how often do you see an actual story?

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/british-columbia/story/2006/07/10/bc-police-dog.html
ltmurnau: (pantzooka)
Here's a blast from my past:

N.B. army base sprayed with toxic chemicals
Last Updated Mon, 13 Jun 2005 11:47:01 EDT
CBC News
A herbicide considered three times more toxic than the cancer-linked Agent Orange was sprayed on a New Brunswick army base in 1966, CBC News has learned.

Read more... )
I trained at the Infantry School at Gagetown in the summers of 1983, 1984 and 1985. The area where the defoliants had been most heavily sprayed was still dead - all silvery-gray with dead trees sticking up everywhere. We were warned not to drink the water there, it was stagnant anyway. We did a fair amount of slogging back and forth in the swamps there.

[EDIT: Now the civvies of Gagetown want compensation! http://www.cbc.ca/story/canada/national/2005/06/14/newagent-orange050614.html]
ltmurnau: (Default)
Well, the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which office was once known as the Grand Inquisitor, has been elected Pope and takes the name of Benedict XVI.

I was just looking up a few other Benedicts:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_popes

Benedict V - reigned one month, raped a young girl and absconded to Constantinople with the treasury; killed by a jealous husband and had his corpse dragged through the streets before being thrown into a cesspit.

Benedict VI - strangled

Benedict IX - Hoo boy, he was Pope three times, first at the age of 12. Sold the office to his godfather for a pile of gold, came back later with an army to depose him, etc. Look him up.

Benedict X - elected irregularly, died a prisoner

Benedict XI - possibly poisoned

Bendict XII - former witch hunter while Bishop of Pamiers

Benedict XIV - drove many converts from the Church with his stance against missions

Benedict XV - Pope during World War One, he called for neutrality and diplomacy while remaining anti-modernist. It's possible that this is why Ratzinger has taken his name.

Quite the Opus Dei connection too, as this LA Times article alleges:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/la-fg-opus19apr19,1,654441.story?coll=chi-news-hed&ctrack=1&cset=true

And, for the record, I heard of Opus Dei long before The Da Vinci Code, even before the Laibach album. Charming people.
ltmurnau: (Default)
Comrade [livejournal.com profile] gummobrux take note:

http://www.cbc.ca/story/arts/national/2005/04/06/Arts/thompsoncannon050406.html

full story )

I sigh with envy at this. "He loved explosions", what an epitaph....

Geisel 101

Mar. 2nd, 2005 11:39 am
ltmurnau: (Default)
It has been brought to my attention that I have missed the 101st birthday of Theodore Geisel, also known as "Dr. Seuss".

Not many people know of the work this gentle, kind man (who never actually had any children of his own and reportedly did not like having the actual article around him) did for the war effort. Here are some samples:





More to be found at http://orpheus.ucsd.edu/speccoll/dspolitic/.

Happy fucking birthday, Dr. T.
ltmurnau: (Default)
Oh no.

Oh so very no.

From the Globe and Mail:
Read more... )

The first question with any suicide is, Why?

Was it all finally too much for him?

He was great when he wrote at length about the venal anti-morality play that is America today, but he was even better when he sounded off about the betrayal of a potentially great nation. At the bottom of all the extreme prose and cataloguing of everything that was wrong, there was a seed of what he thought was right.

The pig is still in the tunnel, but Dr. Gonzo has left the building.

Good-bye.

ltmurnau: (Default)
OK now, in Virginia they really understand what's important!
Well, two points for a good try, anyhow....

***
Droopy-Pants Bill Dropped in Va. Senate

Thu Feb 10, 5:30 PM ET U.S. National - AP

RICHMOND, Va. - Virginia lawmakers dropped their droopy-pants bill Thursday after the whole thing became just too embarrassing.

The bill, which would have slapped a $50 fine on people who wear their pants so low that their underwear is visible in "a lewd or indecent manner," passed the state House on Tuesday but was killed by a Senate committee two days later in a unanimous vote.

Republican Sen. Thomas K. Norment said news reports implied that lawmakers were preoccupied with droopy pants.

"I find that an indignation, which dampens my humor," Norment said.

Republican Sen. Kenneth Stolle, the committee chairman, called the bill "a distraction."

The committee hearing drew a standing-room-only crowd that included about 75 government students from Surry County High School.

"If people in Florida can wear bikinis, a little underwear showing isn't going to hurt anybody," 17-year-old Elvyn Shaw said.

The bill's sponsor, Democratic Delegate Algie T. Howell, declined to answer reporters' questions Thursday but issued a statement saying the bill "was in direct response to a number of my constituents who found this to be a very important issue."

He has said the constituents included customers at his barber shop who were offended by exposed underwear.
***
ltmurnau: (deutsche)

MYSTERIOUS BLACK-UNIFORMED TROOPS WANDERING THE WOODS OF BRITISH COLUMBIA!
MASS MIND CONTROL VIA RADIO WAVES IN THE SLOCAN VALLEY!
SECRET CROSS-BORDER TUNNELS NEAR NELSON PERMIT COVERT US/UN INVASION!
AIEEEEEE!



http://www.rense.com/general41/armed.htm

Use caution when contacting the author, who lives in Nelson:

"I have also uncovered evidence indicating every telephone in the region may be permanently "on" and recording (even when on the hook) 24-hours a day, courtesy of the U.S. military. So if you do have important physical evidence like a videotape of the black-uniformed soldiers, do not discuss it on or near a telephone."

Well, just use caution regardless....
ltmurnau: (Default)
Someone out there is taking pictures of students' butt-floss thong underwear hanging out and posting them on the net! Aiiieee!

excerpted from today's Vancouver Sun )
Clode added: "This person is clearly working as though people are not aware of what he's doing, although as somebody pointed out to me, how can you not be aware that you're not being revealing?"

Referring to the students being photographed, he said: "Their choice of attire is their choice. I can't image that you don't know what the effect is of how you dress."
Read more... )

Think I'll crosspost this to [livejournal.com profile] so_busted.
ltmurnau: (Lt23)
I found this piece in yesterday's Globe and Mail. Found it strangely ironic.

***
A Jewish revival in Poland without any Jews

Sixty years after the liberation of Auschwitz, Poles are celebrating those who were once victims
Read more... )

Emphasis mine in the above.
ltmurnau: (Default)
Les Leyne's column in today's T-C (local paper for you out-of-towners) is good:

***
Time to fix silliness over Beacon Hill: Judge gave the city the means to change the rules that restrict use of park

Read more... )
***

It has been suggested by one of my Constant Readuhs that people just spontaneously congregate in Beacon Hill Park on the night that Luminara would occur in 2005, with their lanterns, and have our own little procession. No administration, no sponsorship, just a slow flash mob (perhaps a flashlight mob?). A stick in the eye for the No-Fun Brigade - they can't forbid an unofficial event, especially after it's underway.

Any interest?

(cross-posted to [livejournal.com profile] victoria_bc
ltmurnau: (Default)
From today's Globe and Mail. I know many of you do not share my interest in copyright and intellectual law (well, it's not an interest, more like a viewing-with-alarm) but here goes:

How copyright could be killing culture

The high cost of getting permission to use archival footage and photos threatens to put makers of documentaries out of business

by GUY DIXON

As Americans commemorate Martin Luther King Jr. and his legacy today, no television channel will be broadcasting the documentary series Eyes on the Prize. Produced in the 1980s and widely considered the most important encapsulation of the American civil-rights movement on video, the documentary series can no longer be broadcast or sold anywhere.
Why?

Read more... )
But at a time when documentaries are probing the U.S. war on terrorism or globalization, for instance, in ways that are more in-depth than typical mainstream news media, the question of whether copyright restrictions are creating a blinkered view of the world is a serious one.

"Why do you think the History Channel is what it is? Why do you think it's all World War II documentaries? It's because it's public-domain footage. So the history we're seeing is being skewed towards what's fallen into public domain," says filmmaker Robert Stone in the American University study.
Read more... )

Hm, again!

Jan. 12th, 2005 09:08 am
ltmurnau: (Default)
Why does it not surprise me that Margaret Atwood, the perennially arrogant ambassador of Rosedale Nation, came up with this?

***
Atwood adds 'inventor' to CV

By REBECCA CALDWELL
Thursday, January 6, 2005 - Page R1 (Globe and Mail)

Picture a book lover in a Kamloops, B.C., bookstore getting his favourite author to sign a book -- from her home in Toronto. Sound like a science-fiction scenario? Perhaps it's fitting then, that Margaret Atwood, author of futuristic fantasies The Handmaid's Tale and Oryx and Crake, has invented a prototype remote autographing device that has the potential to revolutionize book signings.

Atwood hit upon the idea for the machine after a strenuous tour for the paperback publication of Oryx and Crake that took her all across the United States last April.

"I thought, there has to be a better way of doing this," Atwood says. ". . . I am now an old-age pensioner, I cannot keep doing this. I can't keep eating Pringles [from the hotel minibar] and keep getting on the plane at 4 in the morning."

The machine, created in consultation with computer experts under Atwood's newly created company Unotchit Inc., is still in the development phase, but at the moment it will comprise two units. The first will consist of a screen, where the author can see and speak to the book reader in real-time, and a tablet on which the author will write the inscription. The second unit will be with the book reader, and will also include a screen to communicate with the author in real-time, and will have a flat book holder as well as an electronic arm and pen that will scrawl out the autograph.

The system will allow the inscription to be edited or spell-checked before being committed to paper and the quality of the signature should be identical to one done in person, Atwood says. The book reader will also be able to keep a record of the on-screen interaction with the author for posterity.

The autographing system is not meant to replace traditional readings or festivals. "It's an in-bookstore enhancement device," Atwood stresses. She expects the device to be ready for use in the next six to 18 months. The production cost of the machine hasn't yet been determined.

"I applaud anybody that tries to think out of the box about these things and comes up with a truly original idea, but it's also a wait-and-see thing," says Doug Pepper, president and publisher of McClelland & Stewart. "It has to come out, they have to perfect it, get the kinks out of it, and people have to learn how to use them and accept them. It certainly would be easier on the authors, and in terms of saving money, I would hope so -- we're always into saving money. One of the most costly things in any marketing budget is touring."
***

Here, dammit, you can have one for free:

Print it out and paste it in your thrift-store copy of The Handmaid's Tale. You don't even have to talk to her to get it (though the point is that she doesn't have to talk to you).

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