Thursday, January 12, 2006

Abdo's senior picture

That's definitely a senior picture pose. But I think most pictures of him are like that.

I don't know why Abdo reminds me of the guy from "Play a Train Song", but he does. And that fact deserves to be in writing.

Smokin' long black Cadillac, the engine's windin' down
He'd park it up on the sidewalk like he owned the whole damn town
I'd here him talkin' to some chick through a thick ghost of smoke
Through a thicker haze of Southern Comfort and Coke

He'd say, girl you're hotter than the hinges hangin' off the gates of hell
Don't be afraid to turn to me, babe, if a-he don't treat you well
And by he, he meant me, so I laughed and I shook his hand
He'd laugh a little bit louder as he'd yell up at the band

Play a train song, pour me one more round
Make 'em leave my boots on when they lay me into the ground
I am a runaway locomotive out of my one track mind
And I'm a looking for any kind of trouble that I can find

Well I dreamed I saw the silver spaceship flying in the yellow haze of the sun

This wasn't the height of things, but the entire evening had this other-worldly feel to it.

Well I dreamed I saw the silver spaceship flying...

I was lying in a burned out basement
With a full moon in my eye
I was hoping for replacement
When the sun burst through the sky
There was a band playing in my head
And I felt like getting high
I was thinking about what a friend had said
I was hoping it was a lie
Thinking about what friend had said
I was hoping it was a lie

Well I dreamed I saw the silver spaceship flying
In the yellow haze of the sun
There were children crying and colours flying
All around the chosen one
All in a dream, all in a dream
The loading had begun
Flying mother nature's silver seed
To a new home in the sun
Flying mother nature's silver seed
To a new home

I keep my volume at 23

The volume on my MP3 player goes from, like, 0 to 25. But instead of keeping it at full blast, aka 25, I like to keep it at 23.

See, if it's at 23, there's always room to kick it up two more notches when the music really starts to get good.

Banjo solo on "At the End of the Day? Exactly.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Liberal media bias

I haven't been able to lay my lands on a copy of the actual article, but the UCLA public affairs website apparently has a summary of the article, which appears in the December issue of the Quarterly Journal of Economics.
Groseclose and Milyo based their research on a standard gauge of a lawmaker's support for liberal causes. Americans for Democratic Action (ADA) tracks the percentage of times that each lawmaker votes on the liberal side of an issue. Based on these votes, the ADA assigns a numerical score to each lawmaker, where "100" is the most liberal and "0" is the most conservative. After adjustments to compensate for disproportionate representation that the Senate gives to low‑population states and the lack of representation for the District of Columbia, the average ADA score in Congress (50.1) was assumed to represent the political position of the average U.S. voter.

Groseclose and Milyo then directed 21 research assistants — most of them college students — to scour U.S. media coverage of the past 10 years. They tallied the number of times each media outlet referred to think tanks and policy groups, such as the left-leaning NAACP or the right-leaning Heritage Foundation.

Next, they did the same exercise with speeches of U.S. lawmakers. If a media outlet displayed a citation pattern similar to that of a lawmaker, then Groseclose and Milyo's method assigned both a similar ADA score.
Of the 20 major media outlets studied, 18 scored left of center, with CBS' "Evening News," The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times ranking second, third and fourth most liberal behind the news pages of The Wall Street Journal.

Only Fox News' "Special Report With Brit Hume" and The Washington Times scored right of the average U.S. voter.

Gathering Flowers for the Master's Bouquet

Death is an angel sent down from above, Sent for the buds and the flowers we love.
Truly 'tis so, for in heaven's own way, Each soul is a flower in the Master's bouquet.

Chorus: Gathering flowers for the Master's bouquet, Beautiful flowers that will never decay.
Gathered by angels and carried a way, Forever to bloom in the Master's bouquet.

Loved ones are passing each day and each hour, Passing away as the life of a flower.
But every bud in each blossom some day, Will bloom as a flower in the master's bouquet.

Let us be faithful till life's work is done, Blooming with love till the reapers shall come.
Then we'll be gathered together someday, Transplanted to bloom in the Master's bouquet.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Allende's last day

La Moneda, September 11th, 1973

I don't know what impelled me to post this, but this is a great historical picture. Apparently a fair amount of news footage from this era exists, although unfortunately I haven't been able to get my hands on any.

La Tercera has an excellent collection of multimedia (photos and audioclips) of the September 11th golpe.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Let it flow, let it flow, let it flow.. !

350 Kbps is very respectable. Better, even, than I was getting at the damn coffee shop, which has eaten up hundreds of dollars of mine in conjunction with my using their wireless internet over the past few months.

Call it a New Years time miracle, but my DSL finally started working today. Besides fiddling around with the modem randomly last night, nothing really has changed from a month ago. Let's home it doesn't suddenly die on me; I'll feel much better after a week or so of solid use. In fact, now that I think about it, I'm kind of in constant fear of it stopping working.

But until then: this rocks. I can finally fulfill my dream of working on my desktop, with my laptop on my lap, doing what I like to call old school multitasking.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Mmmm... a delicious cup of armed rebellion

I did not know this, but apparently at least one company in the "fair trade" coffee movement has been directing its efforts toward farmers in the Chiapas region of Mexico, well-known for its harboring the Zapatista rebel group. Higher Grounds Trading Co., a Michigan-based fair trade company who claims that buyers of its coffee "are not only receiving a quality cup of coffee but also a cup of justice", has no qualms about its support for the Zapatistas, either. Perhaps they should amend that to include "a cup of armed rebellion"?

On their web page, they state:
Organized groups of Mayan indigenous peoples, such as the Zapatistas and Las Abejas, have been instrumental in pressuring the government and international community to recognize the rights of indigenous people the world over.

Higher Grounds Trading Co. recognizes and sympathizes with the plight of the indigenous people of Chiapas to gain dignity and justice in a democratic society. To assist our partner cooperatives in their efforts toward peace and sustainability, we have developed relationships with Mut Vitz, Yachil and Maya Vinic to ensure:
* The farmers receive a liveable wage
* Healthy, sustainable organic farming techniques are practiced
* Our customers get the most premium cup of coffee
And from today's AP wire, the owner of Higher Grounds is quoted as follows:
Higher Grounds' 31-year-old owner, Chris Treter, said the Zapatista ideas could resonate north of the Rio Grande.

"There are a lot of people in Mexico and in the United States who are disenfranchised and are looking for a voice they can't find in the political parties," Treter said.
Wow. I would've thought that Higher Grounds would try to tip-toe around any association with the Zapatistas, rather than outright endorsing them. But apprently it's OK to be pro-violence if the group involved is a leftist one.