Thursday, 25 November 2004

Licences: 1854-2004

Licences: 1854-2004
Although, from what I have heard so far, I disagree with these "UPMART" people, I did wonder if this Victorian group protesting about a licensing law was in some way marking the sesquicentenary of the Eureka Uprising?


Thursday, 18 November 2004

Remember this case?

Crematory operator pleads guilty to corpse abuse

November 17, 2004 - 8:47AM
A former crematory operator accused of dumping 334 bodies on his property and passing off cement dust as ashes had agreed to plead guilty to criminal charges, ...
... a source with knowledge of the deal told Associated Press on condition of anonymity that Marsh will be sentenced to 12 years in prison with credit for about seven months he already has served while awaiting trial.
The sentence, which covered all 787 criminal charges of theft and abuse of a corpse, would be followed by a lengthy probation period, the source said. If Marsh were to go to trial and be convicted on all charges, he could be sentenced to more than 8,000 years in prison ...
Marsh and dozens of funeral homes that sent bodies to the crematory have already settled a civil lawsuit for $US80 million ($103.53 million). Attorneys for Marsh had asked Judge Bodiford to throw out the theft charges, arguing that the corpses did not constitute property.

Just to cheer you up after that -- this may have you ROTFL, or possibly cringing behind your hands in recognition of repressed memories.


(also links to things like Caxton's Chaucer online) -, and some other things you may find useful or interesting.

A Nartist:

A Nother

For those annoyed moments: "autofellating coprophage" sounds nice.

Saturday, 13 November 2004

I dreamed I saw Joe Hill last night ...

I have been following (lightly - life gets in the way sometimes) some of the reaction in the US & elsewhere amongst like-minded citizens to the election success of Bush (& Howard).
It's usually agreed that putting as much effort into making sure that electronic voting, voting, ballot security & vote counting in the "First World" is as scrutinised & secure & independently overseen as the system developed for paper ballots in countries with former records of rigging & cheating is worth putting effort into.

But many are also looking at examples like, say, Gandhi, where he said, more or less:
"We can't fight them with force, both because that's the wrong way to achieve our aims anyway, and also because they're better at it & we won't win.

We can try, in some circumstances defying & working against them directly, but that must only be where there is no alternative - and it might serve our cause rather than harm it.

What we should try to do is ignore them. Work around them. Do our own thing our own way rather than fall in with their system. Show that we can do things our way, with our systems, and with better results. Show the people they needn't be dependent on the ones who say 'bend down and serve us, let us make you suffer, because you will suffer even more without us', then their support will crumble from within."

Or as Joe Hill put it more succinctly: "Organize!"

Thursday, 11 November 2004

Friday, 5 November 2004

And in my right hand I hold my sorrow, And with my left hand I reach for joy

Saudi Arabia sees Bush victory as lesser of two evils
By Ed O'Loughlin, Herald Correspondent in Riyadh
October 29, 2004

Whatever the realpolitik calculations, on the emotional level relations between the US and its Saudi guarantors of cheap petrol - always unsentimental - have never been worse.
While Muslim fundamentalists continue to preach against the Great Satan, America's natural constituency among liberal and reform-minded educated Saudis has been alienated by what it sees as hostility towards Arabs since the September 11 attacks.
Over the past three years tens of thousands of young Saudis have returned home from US universities to escape official or unofficial harassment or because of difficulties in renewing study visas.
"After 9/11 they say that all Arabs and Muslims are terrorists," said the editor of Arab News, Khalid al-Maeena, whose son recently returned from a US university without graduating. "This has made young Arabs turn against the West. They like to listen to Ricky Martin and Mark Anthony and have coffee at Starbucks, and yet their sentiments are increasingly anti-American."
"Saudis love the West and they hate it," said Mansour al-Nogaidan, once a leading Islamic hardliner and now a liberal dissident. "They love Western civilisation but they hate it because they feel inferior. They hate the thought that it is stronger than we are, that it is up while we are a long way down."

Many good useful & hopeful things (as well as rage, despair, &c.) on the "Bad morning" thread at Making Light
I really thought that today would be the beginning of our recovery from the current low point. But I guess we have lower to sink. Doesn't mean we won't rise again eventually.
And in my right hand I hold my sorrow
And with my left hand I reach for joy
We all are soldiers whether we fight or fall
No one can run from the scorns of time.

    "Scorns of Time", on the Simple Path album, by Irene Kelley and Claire Lynch

Alison ::: November 03, 2004, 04:39 PM
( )

What I resent most about this election is that 80% of the people who based their decision on "moral values" voted for Bush. Since when did the Republican Party become the last bastion of morality? Well, because they say they are and Democrats are resistent to portraying themselves that way.
These people who voted for moral values believe that abortion is murder and that homosexuals are out to wreck their marriages, but not that every child should be adequately educated or that the elderly should not have to choose between their prescription drugs and their food for the month.
The reason they focus on abortion and homosexual marriage is that someone told them who was to fear and what was to blame for their problems in life ...

What I keep coming back to is an article I read last year about how conservatives use language to dominate politics. The link: 2003/10/27_lakoff.shtml
There must be a way to make people see that bombing terrorists only breeds more terrorists, that depriving children of education creates crime and that allowing everyone the same rights does not somehow dilute or diminish those rights. In other words, have to talk to the other side. Unfortunately, we first have to figure out how to use words they can hear.

Man tries to convert lions to Jesus, gets bitten
46-year-old leaps into den at Taipei Zoo, calls beasts to Christianity
[There is video of this.]
Updated: 5:51 a.m. ET Nov. 3, 2004
TAIPEI, Taiwan - A man leaped into a lion’s den at the Taipei Zoo on Wednesday to try to convert the king of beasts to Christianity, but was bitten in the leg for his efforts.
“Jesus will save you!” shouted the 46-year-old man at two African lions lounging under a tree a few meters away.
“Come bite me!” he said with both hands raised, television footage showed.
One of the lions, a large male with a shaggy mane, bit the man in his right leg before zoo workers drove it off with water hoses and tranquilizer guns.
Newspapers said that the lions had been fed earlier in the day, otherwise the man might have been more seriously hurt ... or worse.

Thursday, 4 November 2004

Sidebar Redux

Looks like the width of the "Boondocks" image I put on the page after the US elections has forced the sidebar down to the bottom again. Will have to either re-size it or make it a link to a permanent place (the site will go into archives where you have to be registered to reach).

Mutter grumble mutter grumble.

Wednesday, 3 November 2004

Mirror Project; Reflections

Did you know there's a place called Licking County, Ohio?
Bonus Kerry anecdote - back in 2002, when he last ran for the Senate, the voting booths at his precinct weren't working, and a large line was building up. He asked the poll workers for the manual, studied it for a bit, and fixed the machines. When I saw that story, I knew I liked his attitude. (via Dan Blum, no verification)

The Mirror Project (
The Mirror Project began life as the awkwardly titled "Friends of Jezebel's Mirror," or FOJM, an adjunct site to Heather Champ's Jezebel's Mirror in October '99.

Poor planning and lack of foresight created an hand coded unsearchable frames based behemoth as the collection of photographs and stories grew well beyond her expectations.

FOJM relaunched as the Mirror Project in June of 2001 with just over seven hundred contributions and we continue to grow daily Thousands of people from around the world continue to support the The Mirror Project by capturing photographs of themselves in all manner of reflective surfaces. We love you.

Why reflective self-portraiture? This interview that Heather did with O, the Oprah Magazine might shed some light on the matter
But, more importantly, The Mirror Project is you
Please feel free to contact us:
( Mirror Project comments ) with any
questions and/or comments that you might have. Support is always welcome.

Fotoblog: The Wonder Spot - "11/02/04 VOTE!"

The only problem was that they stuck the "I voted today" sticker directly onto my new bomber jacket. I peeled it off and put it on my car bumper. I don't believe in those stickers. I'm proud to vote, sticker or not.
ObSF idea: "I haven't voted yet" stickers, distributed and applied pre-election and removable only at a polling place. If a person still has his sticker after the election, he is shunned, scorned, and has to buy all of the beers for a week.

Bangladeshis urge vote for Kerry

Interesting Suggestion
Larry Brennan ::: ::: November 02, 2004, 08:04 PM:
Re: electronic voting machine design - Forget the interaction and usability
experts and give the contract to International Game Technology ( ). They know a thing or two about building secure devices with good uptime.
Plus they could come out with a Simpsons-themed voting booth!

I found the Bangladeshis for Kerry rally photo on Yahoo News Photos. Both new-look Yahoogle & the older one have long & hideous URLs; I've put spaces in case they break the display here, so remove the spaces, or just search for pertinent terms onsite. news?tmpl=story&u=/041101/481/ dha10111011526Bangladeshi supporters of U.S. presidential candidate John Kerry march
urging American people to vote for Kerry, in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Monday, Nov.
1, 2004 (AP Photo/Pavel Rahman)

Pic only:

Sad, bad news coming through this afternoon from the election (we just started Daylight Saving, I think you've just finished, so it's a bit after 5pm Wed Nov 3rd officially here).
My pessimistic friend thought it was all set up well ahead, and is saying things about the lowest ebb is just before the turn of the tide. Also that sometimes you have to go & help the tide. I think he's somewhat at the stage of Aaron McGruder's "The Boondocks" comic strip of Nov 2, 2004