Buddha bytes

Found this great quote on The Free Liberal website:

“Believe nothing merely because you have been told it. Do not believe what your teacher tells you merely out of respect for the teacher. But whatsoever, after due examination and analysis, you find to be kind, conducive to the good, the benefit, the welfare of all beings — that doctrine believe and cling to, and take it as your guide.”

— Buddha

Amen, brutha! We could all use a bit more “due examination and analysis” these days, not to mention kindness and moving toward the greater good.

American Family Association Survey

The rumor is that they only send out this survey to those they know–or at least suspect–will answer it in exactly the way that they want it answered. I think it is fair to let as many people know about the survey so that their “results” will reflect as many viewpoints as possible. Please follow the link below and answer your conscience. A warning however, they will require an email address and confirmation of that email address, so you might not want to use your primary email in case your answer lands you on a spam list.

AFA Survey

[Update: It seems that this survey has been pulled of their site. I wonder why?]

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Frakked Up

Feministing posts about a Georgia High School and this year being the first desegregated prom. Yes, this year. Link

Alternet has a story about how the Bush Administration is working to privatize our water supplies. Great, a requirement of life in the hands of multi-national corporations, what a great idea that is. Link

Contrary to crazy-leftist-pinko-commie-traitor rhetoric, America is certainly not the only place where politicians come up with stupid, censorious ideas. Ars Technica has a story about a Canadian bill that would register every Canadian ISP with the government which would then be able to shut down any site they wanted. Could we then see a resurgence of the BBS? Link

The Guardian has an article called “Fascist America, in 10 easy steps” that is chilling. Even if you don’t agree with every point, there are certainly a number of signs and portents in our culture that point to a significant loss of personal freedom in this country. Link

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Time Warner Buys The US Postal Service

Check it out:

Postal regulators have accepted a proposal from media giant Time Warner that would stifle small and independent publishers in America. The plan unfairly burdens smaller publishers with higher postage rates while locking in special privileges for bigger media companies.

Mother Jones covers the story here.

After almost a year of hearings, last month the Bush-appointed US Postal Service Board of Governors tossed out their own staff recommendations and at the last minute approved a 758-page plan submitted by Time Warner that will increase mailing costs between 18 and 30 percent a year for small-circulation magazines like Mother Jones, while postal costs for the big guys – Time, Newsweek, People – will actually go down. The Board of Guvs opened up their decision to public comment for a grand total of 8 days, and then scheduled it to go into effect this coming July.

Baltimore IMC covers it here.

McChesney notes the new postal rates “were developed with no public involvement or congressional oversight (in a scheme) drafted by (media giant) Time Warner, the largest magazine publisher in the nation.” McChesney believes responsible postal bureaucrats failed to consider how adverse their action is to a free and open press. This writer’s view is darker, however, believing it’s another example of dirty political machinations with corporate America telling government and bureaucrats to jump and their responding how high.

To take action, you can go to Freepress.net’s campaign.

Thanks to Amanda at Pandagon for the heads up on this one.

Up for the Darwin Award?

The UK Times Online has this story:

“Catapult boy is eaten after taunting crocodile in pen”

This just has to be up for a Darwin Award and is one of the stupidest things I’ve heard of someone doing who is not drunk (the kid was 9 so I’m making an assumption) or on drugs:

A schoolboy who climbed over a fence into a crocodile enclosure and taunted the animals with sticks and a catapult was dragged into the water and eaten . . . The children shot at the animals with catapults and beat them with sticks.

This is not a matter of knowing good from bad or right from wrong. This is a matter of ignoring every animal instinct that we have hardwired into our brain that tells us not to piss off a large-animal-that-can-eat-you unless you are high up in the branches of a tree and said large-animal-that-can-eat-you cannot climb up. I mean, this is stuff we figured out back in our pre-sapien days.

What I was listening to . . . Howard Jones

Back in the mid-80s, Howard Jones was a favorite of mine. Somehow his earnest, New Wave, synth-pop tunes connected to the romantic/idealist that was the teenaged LtL. In particular his albums “Human’s Lib” (Howard Jones) and “Dream Into Action” (Howard Jones). His songs definitely feel dated, almost silly at time, but songs like “Elegy” and “Hide and Seek” still have the power to effect me and remain quite beautiful.

Occasionally I will listen to these albums, catapulting myself back in time for a brief time, letting the 16 year old LtL emerge and remember the innocence of it all.

What were you listening to?

Joost Invites, 3 of them

LtL has been given 3 Joost invites. Let me know if you are interested in checking out this new Internet TV service out and I’ll send you one. So far I’ve watched a couple of the Comedy Central shows and, while the quality seems pretty good, I’ve had the shows just stop in the middle and I get a message saying that the show is not available at the moment. Obviously, they are still in Beta, so some issues are bound to crop up, but I would like to watch a complete episode of something before I really recommend it. Still, it’s kind of cool to check out.

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Lost Post

I just had a rather long and quite good post about the movie Searching for the Wrong-Eyed Jesus.

It was lost when Ecto crashed and took the whole post down with it, despite the fact that I have the “save drafts automatically” selection checked off in the settings.


I certainly don’t have the energy to do it all over again now, but do want to recommend the film as well as his music.

“Wrong-Eyed Jesus! (Mysterious Tale of How I Shouted)” (Jim White)

“No Such Place” (Jim White)

“Drill a Hole in That Substrate and Tell Me What You See” (Jim White)

“Music from Searching for the Wrong-Eyed Jesus” (Jim White)

“Searching for the Wrong-Eyed Jesus” (Andrew Douglas (IV))

Very Silly and Damn High on the Cute Scale

I wanted to try out the soundtrack function on Garageband so I grabbed a very low quality video I had taken with my Vivicam 3765. This is also an excuse for me to figure out how to post a Quicktime movie.

Yes, it’s of the cat.

I promise, unless there are extreme circumstances, I will not post more pics or films of the cat . . . I refuse to become one of those bloggers that is all about their pets.

[Update: Why host movies on my own server when I can host them on YouTube and link to them on the blog? Good question. That’s why I signed up for a YouTube account and you are seeing a YouTube video above instead of a Quicktime movie. If you click on the video and get a message that the movie is “no longer available,” the message should read “not yet available.” Check back in a bit and the movie should be up and available.]