April 24, 2008

citizen soldier

Now, I am not saying that


reminds me of


Well, obviously, that reminds me of this. I wonder though, if this is preaching to the choir. I wonder, if someone whose family has signed up, or who is thinking about it themselves looks at these two videos and thinks, "I don't know what he is trying to tell me with these two videos here side by side. One is a cool song with people in it who I want to be like. The other kinda makes fun of that, but still is a kick ass movie about kicking ass." I wonder, if my idea that people who sign up for the armed services are victims to clever marketing campaigns and jaded appeals to patriotism is correct. Are they just too removed from my way of thinking to even register the irony I see in these videos? Likewise, do they think that I just don't get it? That I do not understand sacrifice and carrying a heavy burden for my country? I don't know, but it sure seems that way.

Heinlein wrote Starship Troopers in 1959. Now, I am not saying that this either means that we haven't learned anything new in the last 50 years, or that we seem to have a really bad memory for having such a large waste of space between our ears. But... well, thats exactly what I am saying. I feel slightly ethically challenged to be reminded of our morals by a Sci-Fi writer. Funnily enough Heinlein seems to have written this in support of getting some, but I completely missed that. The propaganda segment above must be one of the most sarcastic pieces of self-flagellation known to man - he was making fun of himself without even knowing it. He was doing his part!

So even though I completely missed out on the fact that Heinlein meant his story as propaganda for citizenship to attained only through willingness to ultimate sacrifice, which means that I myself am too far removed to get the warrior's point, I nevertheless want to ask you, the warrior, to consider what it would be like not to head the call to arms. Let us nevertheless try to understand a fact or two about the history of propaganda and warfare of the last 70 odd years?

For example, why is it always the citizen who is doing the dying? What it is it that makes all of us volunteer to go get some? In this modern enlightened world should we not be able to move beyond that? Or is our biology too overpowering, are we too much a victim of evolution to leave the fights over whose religion disproves evolution best behind? Is our need to be in constant competition too strong? Ah well, maybe soon we can make a Warrior Caste. You say we have one already? Na, if that was the case why would we need to see videos such as the one above to convince us of the validity of our morality and honor?

And why is someone who dies for the place that he lives in, more valid than someone who teaches the children and nurses the sick in that same place, just to name another couple of bland favorites of public benevolence. How much more useful could he have been as a patriotic teacher, still alive, instead of being six feet under? We do accord respect according to usefulness right? Otherwise our incentives would be rewarding the wrong action. If we would elevate sacrifice over utility, we could all die a hero's death but no mother would outlive her sons. What would be the point of that?

And why the bloody hell, are we still dying for the places we live in? have you ever thought of maybe just not doing that? We do not live in a feudal age anymore, in which you were completely beholden to your master's will, who said frog so you hopped.

And finally, why can I not turn in my passport and still travel the world?

Are you doing your part?

you are nothing but a cog!

In recent month I have had the pleasure to like working where I am. I generally like what I do and the people that I work with. But in the end it was always just a job. Just as I am just a resource for my current employer – no hard feelings. But lately simple measures on the part of my employer have led to an emotion akin to gratitude. Surprising I know, but stranger things have happened, like the Suns coming back from the brink of elimination. We were treated to free fruit at the entrance, and if you knew where to look you found yourself some free snacks, coffee and soda as well. Now all that free stuff is official, and available in the cafeteria. Unfortunately, my employer has decided that this is also a good time to implement a little segregation. Contractors are now not welcome anymore to enjoy those benefits. Understand, as a contractor I am used to zero benefits, comes with the territory. But giving me free fruit, in essence telling me that you care about my health, and then taking it away again is, I don’t know, cruel and unusual punishment? Don’t toy with me, you are not the god, I refuse to believe in, who supposedly “giveth and taketh away”.

In this spirit I should be forgiven for taking the following memo seriously:

"Following the announcement that the free fruit will now be for blue badges only, it has been decided that all drinking fountains on the third and fourth floors will also be blue-badge exclusive. However, green badges who wish to drink during the day will not be restrained from bringing in their own water bottles. In order to apply a consistent policy throughout the building, elevators 2 and 3 will be off-limits to green badges. Since you are not getting any free fruit anymore, we thought that you should maintain your health by walking the stairs. Finally, all bathroom stalls will also be “BLUE ONLY”. Urinals will remain open to Green badges for sanitary purposes, but Green Badges wishing to defecate during work hours are encouraged to bring in their own port-a-potty. In order for this segregation to be clear to all there will be signs “BLUE ONLY” posted in all relevant areas. And we are not referring to your eye color here, that would be racist.”

There really are signs like that :(

April 23, 2008

master in the sky

“A long time ago all ships were propelled by sails only”, the Skymaster of the excuse for a ship that I lucklessly find myself on after leaving Talinn behind tells me somewhat redundantly. His cabin is a mess, his beard a tangle and his eyes perpetually crossed. But his kite is perfect. He reminds me of those honorable gauchos who would feed their horse before feeding themselves.
At some point after a long time ago, ships were powered by one or another derivative of hydrocarbon. Then it ran out. Now ships are propelled by a combination of wind and solar power. The Skymaster’s job is to fly the enormous kite attached to the bow of the ship. The Solmaster looks after the solar panels.
“There is no justification for that lazy good-for-nothing narcissist’s existence on this ship”, he informs me as we make our way up what would have been the quarterdeck 400 years ago. I worry about his eyes doing a 360° rotation in his head.
From this I gather that the Skymaster and the Solmaster don’t get along. It seems to be a tradition of sorts on ships; stemming from their inherently different psychological makeup (insert any large number of favorite neuroses here) required by the skills that essentially are fundamentally, directly and even diametrically opposed. Basically, to use my least favorite garbage word, the Skymaster needs to be a control freak, never not having his full attention on the kite. The Solmaster goes for a tan amongst his solar panels while they suck up the juice. Needless to say that lazy good-for-nothing narcissist is the nicest thing a Skymaster has to say about a Solmaster.
“Used to be I was kiting just for the heck of it. Strap myself in, float above water, say hello to the gods.”
“Are all Skymasters former kite boarders” I ask.
“I wouldn’t say that all Kite Boarders become Skymasters. But all Skymasters certainly are Kite Boarders.”
Since we are about to head up to the SkyCon, the lookout from which the Skymaster controls the Kite, I decide to overlook his slightly cryptomanic Sagan reference. The SkyCon is raised 20 feet above the bow on a spindle of a pole. I am afraid to get up into it at the same time as the Skymaster. It looks flimsy.
“It only looks like it will be carried away with the slightest breeze. There is some nano-shit in there, keeps it from getting ripped out”. He proceeds to tell me in much too much detail how the kite is attached to the SkyCon. None of which I believe because how can the power from a 5000m² kite be transmitted to a ship displacing 10k tons through a spindle of a pole, no matter how much really small shit is in there? If you don’t believe me, wrap a kite line around your index finger and let a 2m² kite drop down into speed.
In the SkyCon the Skymaster straps himself into a climber’s safety harness on steroids which is suspended in the middle of the SkyCon by six lines of fiber that are too thin to see. The lines from this low-grade spider web lead through small holes to the outside.
“Step back into that recess, unless you want your head lopped off by these lines. There is some nano…”
“… shit in there, keeps it from being ripped off, I know, I know” says I as I step.
“Right, let’s grab some sky.”
He taps a button on the floor with his left big toe (he is barefoot) and a trap door opens below the bow of the ship. After small clanking noises ebb away, a piece of fabric starts to unfurl from the trap door. It seems to be suspended by nothing and raised by magic. Then I notice the morning sun glinting of the lines leading from the kite over various pulleys to where I stand. In fact the lines attached to the kite are the same lines leading from the low-grade spider web out the holes of the SkyCon. I have to fight a sudden urge to vacate the area as I have visions of nano-shit strengthened lines snapping and reducing the Skymaster and me to small heaps of steaming meat and puddles of slowly cooling blood. The Skymaster proves that he smells my fear because he snaps the lines in the wind which is catching in the piece of fabric that at this point does not look like a kite but like a used Pariser (you need to be from Vienna to get this, sorry). The nano-strength snapping sounds like a 45 going of behind my left ear. I tell him where he can shove his practical jokes unless he wants me to perform nasty forms of ritual rape and torture on his firstborn. He doesn’t take this seriously, probably because he is twice as large as I am, but nevertheless stops snapping the lines. My guess is that that’s just not good for all the nano-shit, and who would want that to hit the fan?
Slowly, the kite unfurls to its full size, which is intimidating. No wonder this guy thinks he is the king of the world in his little SkyCon above the bow. It takes an hour to deploy the kite fully, at which point it is suspended 500 meters above the ocean, making lazy eights in the sky. He calls it m8ing.
By the time this is achieved I have come to understand a simple truth about Skymasters. They are a higher evolved species then you and I. Strapped into their harness on steroids, suspended a couple of inches above ground by invisible lines, they perform a ballet more elegant than the Bolshoi. They calibrate the monster at the end of their lines with such finesse as to boggle the mind. At this point I could emasculate you with certain intimidating mathematical formulas that describe to you in detail the staggering power that is transmitted from this kite to the ship, while the interface between the two is a single human who is attached to both by lines that you can’t see. But I won’t. Suffice it to say it’s like having a medium-sized jet engine strapped to your ass with twine.
Two of the lines are attached to the harness at his hips and one each to his arms and legs. Every time the Skymaster pulls on a line in his spider web, turns his hips slightly, traces a circle with his left leg, or produces any number of cryptic movements, the kite in the sky obeys. I am entranced as this superhuman performs pirouettes in the SkyCon while the kite leverages his every move. Complicated patterns that only become apparent at their midpoint leave me undecided if I would rather watch a hairy, dirty, cross-eyed sailor perform ballet that is mildly influenced by Arabesque and fully suspended in midair, or a condom the size of a soccer pitch m8ting in the sky.
In the end I only resolve that we seem to still evolve. Even though we may not see it for our perspective is too limited.

April 21, 2008

America, my favorite catholic schoolgirl

have at first blush nothing in common. In fact many of you will yell “Au contraire!” After all, wasn’t it hard for JFK to convince voters that it is ok to vote for a catholic? Funny, that. And it surely has to be depressing for the pope to visit the USA. One mass in Rio has 100 times more attendees than three weeks of christmas here. Similarly, and to this day, I, being the eurotrashy anti-religionist that I am, do not understand how people here are all part of one christian sect or another but can’t stand what is the original christian sect. The ones who got thrown to the lions way back when.

But as with all things catholic, many contradictions have to be weighed and balanced against each other. If you disagree, just read on, and at least have a good laugh. This might be hard for you if you are either American or catholic. If you are both, and still laugh at the end of this, congratulations. Please send me a note and I will try to insult you better next time.

So let’s get to the second blush, the one where we get down to the nitty-gritty or as an American cartoon character would say the “the gigidy-gigidy”. Here, I believe, the similarities between the USA and a Catholic School Girl can not be denied. Even though catholics are weird to you Americans, the prim and properly boring nature of your relationship with your lust is decidedly catholic. You need to be more at peace with it.

For example:

  • The USA always thinks that she is being attacked by an evil doer who wants to take her virginal (you think nobody else has it) freedom away by force. Girls here think that what they have is constantly craved by the next guy, and only to be given away under certain tightly defined circumstances. With which I have two problems: first, who says I want it so bad that I am willing to convince you that you do too? Second, when will you grow up and learn that it is yours to enjoy instead of give away? The tightly defined circumstances you are yoked to have nothing to do with your own needs or wants, and everything with certain catholic-seeming societal dogmas. Liberate yourselves to enjoy yourselves. Since you are still running into the glass ceiling, you might at least have some good sex, which contrary to local popular believe is your own to achieve.
  • The USA always has the biggest guns, just like Pamela Anderson’s breasts.
  • The USA always comes to help those in need, but only after imposing strict none-preventative measures of birth control. Reminds me of, I don’t know, every girl that I ever was with in this country. Sho really wanted to be there with me, just not really at the same time as me, if you catch my drift… out. If you did not catch it, let me quote Billy Connolly, “20 wild horses could not make me go the other way!”
  • Every once in a while (read: all the time) the USA goes on a bloody rampage, causing mayhem in various more or less uncivilized places around the globe, and then spends years feeling guilty about it. If that doesn’t remind you of a catholic school girl nothing will. Mayhem = epicurean pleasure principle, or what feels good must be good; where the Nation drops bombs in righteous anger, and the girl discovers that her body is a temple of untold, numberless and mind-blowing pleasures. Uncivilized places = with a boy. Years of guilt = self explanatory.

So, now that we can all agree that if one would want to define the USA by way of an example from our human experience, the closest we can get to a true simile is a Catholic School Girl. The only cure for this lamentable condition is a thorough undermining of all previously, misleadingly so, held puritanical notions in order to help you establish a peaceful relationship with your lust. Barring this, a good fucking will do.

April 18, 2008

USA needs you Mara

We need more politicos like Mara in the USA. Not just because she would slap our homegrown public personas in shape real fast. If our puritan closet freakish men and women would be distracted by tits and ass a little more, maybe they would forget about figuring out new ways to drop scifi weaponry on stone age civilizations.

You think I am kidding? How many murders does a child see on day-time TV before age 14? How much tits and ass does the same child see? Which one of the two viewing habits is more naturally conducive to peace, love and happiness? How many years did the average continental European, the one you think of as a perverted freak, spend in some leafy jungle or some scorching desert chasing some imaginary enemy? How many children of your tits and ass hating nation have you sent to die in those places?

If your boys, your men and your leaders would be a little more comfortable with sex, with nakedness, with themselves, it is quite possible that they would not feel the need to go out into the big world and prove themselves as real men in the only way they have seen and learned from a young age.

Instead they could revel in the joys of their's and their lover's body - I just wanted to write that at least once in my life :) Does that sentence make you a little uncomfortable? Is that why you laugh a little forced now?

Don't get me wrong. I am not talking about hard core porn on day time TV (that should only be on late at night:) Being an American that is naturally the only way you can think of a naked body. To you it always is dirty, it always is demeaning, it always is something that your little girl/boy would never do. I am talking about a scene on TV, where it is implied that two people just got down, but somehow the girl covers her breasts after coitus. Now, why would a girl cover herself AFTER she just fucked the living daylights out of the hunk, whose hung you would definitely never-ever-never-ever get to see on American TV (now I realize why the girls always look so surprised)? The result is that you think to be naked is unnatural; it makes you think what just happened was dirty and wrong.

Instead of this farce it would be nice to see people act the way they really do after having sex, when waking up in the morning, when going to the master bathroom or when doing any number of things in life that happen to involve some degree of nakedness. It would also be nice for your children not to be subjected to endless gory repetitions of bullets exploding out of heads, knifes slashing throats and land mines leaving a fine red mist behind.

So let's bring on Carla Bruni, I mean Sarkozy, and lets bring on Mara Carfagna. If you don't like their breasts, maybe you can go for their lovely names. And maybe one day your son's eyes won't perpetually pop out of his head on his first Euro trip. And maybe a couple of years later he won't come home in a body bag.

PS: Do click on the image above.
PPS: Do run this query with your teeny-weeny adult filter off.
PPPS: I wouldn't actually vote for a girl that decides to go into politics because she only placed 6th in the Miss Italy competition. If I lived in Italy, that is. Strikes me as a bad choice for a future legislatress. On the other hand, here in the USA, she would be a welcome addition to our... uhm... body politic
PPPPS: Ok, If I would vote for her, I would watch C-Span even more than now.

April 16, 2008

by the numbers

Provided by Josh, in case you ever go on a quizz show.

number of questions the average four-year-old asks in a day : 400

number of ways to make change for a dollar : 293

percentage of women when walking into a department store immediately turn to the right : 90%

percentage of people who wash from top to bottom in shower : 75%

percentage of people who flush the toilet while still on it : 33%

number of years of our life we spend asleep : 24

rate at which the earth orbits the sun (miles per second) : 18.5

number of times the average person laughs in a day : 15

number of people who die every year from shaking vending machines : 13

age most people stop believing in Santa Claus : 8

age most people stop believing in politicians : 7

average life expectancy (in seconds) of an enemy soldier in a Chuck Norris film : 4

number of useless statistics left : 1

number of U.S. presidents that were an only child : 0

April 15, 2008

confuse and castrate

Sex in the City is not a TV show that I watch diligently. So when my Dutch friend told me that she sometimes thinks that our lunch conversations resemble those of your dear heroines, I was naturally inclined towards suspicion. Because, or maybe in spite of this, during this particular lunch we chatted about the reasons for humans having such an enlarged thought processing unit, when compared to other mammals. Namely, the seemingly futile effort that both human species have been engaging in for eons: to find a rudimentary understanding of the other.

This conversation happens after another one of my episodes of Dating the American Woman, which usually provide hours of highly entertaining plotlines. Never mind the details, just know that it’s funny and that most of the time I try to tell myself that I enjoy contradictions. If you picture yourself starring in the movie “Sideways”, with a bottle of wine, and a feeling of emptiness where your cojones would usually be located, you are halfway to the embitchenated state that the American male finds hisself in. Which is what I try to avoid.

As a small side note: I have not seen this movie. My prejudice against movies about the castration of the American male is large and my patience limited. All I remember of the trailer are doe eyed dudes in convertibles drinking red whine and wondering where their balls went after the last one chopped them off and sacrificed them on her Altar to Confusion. Unfortunately, the girls here think they can bring the same strategy of Confuse and Castrate to the euro trashy boi that I am.

The husband of my Dutch friend is the envy of all men in my group. What is usually referred to as a woman’s insanity or propensity to wreck dramatized havoc in an otherwise pleasantly uneventful life is seemingly absent from his. She tells me this is so because Dutch men do not put up with the drama, they will simply leave when the girl tries to throw them for a loop. Before you cry wolf, know that when the guys try something that doesn’t fit into the rational pattern of human interaction developed by the low-landers the women do the same thing.

Now imagine young leetle Hansje, walking down a tulip infested street in a village just next to the canal, and this lovely leetle Marietje comes rolling along on her bicycle (which my Germanic grandfather grudgingly returned as part of the last war reparations in 1998). They see each other. They like each other. They agree to meet for coffee. They drink coffee and … (one month interlude here, they are good people, not HOs) kiss. They agree to meet again. Before that happens she lets him know that she thinks it’s not a good idea to keep going in that kissing direction, that she needs more time. But when they meet again, instead of this being true, it is only a matter of proving Hansje’s honorable intent; the game that ensues is a test. If, and only if, he jumps through any number of emotional hoops, he will get to kiss her again. If not, she will deny him. Now, if this would happen in Castration Central (CC) Hansje would gamely try to pass the test, jump through the Emo-Hoops and please his leetle Marietje to no end, just to get some satisfaction. Which, of course, he can't get. But since this is the low country he decides to keep his cojones around a little longer and moves on to a Marietje that puts her money where her mouth is… namely, between her legs (I don’t actually mean that, it just flows nicely, she can put her money in a piggy bank if she so desires). This being her fifth Hansje, Marietje learns that drama is unacceptable if she wants to hold on to a Dutch guy. And Hansje is similarly relieved of whatever silly macho notions he had about how to act around Dutch girls.

Seems to me that for the low-landers it is not about dominance, about castration or about who is on top. Instead it simply is alright for them to demand respect and to give it.

Which explains why the Flying Dutchman is the only one who doesn’t chime in when we share stories from the trenches of dating in CC, and why I am looking for a Dutch mail order bride catalogue. Feel free to send me one at any time.

bangladesh or niederlande

Niederlande is what we call Holland in German. It means Low-Lands. When the East Antarctic Ice Sheet melts I don't know what would be worse: to be in Holland or in Bangladesh. Check out the Sea Level Rise Explorer I just picked up from Salon. The darker the color, the bigger a snorkel you will need. Have a look around and see what happens to your favorite shoreline.

You may think that this is slightly sarcastic on my part, to be posting this map, when I live in high and dry Phoenix. However, if you would scroll down my contact list, you would see at least one person in each of the worst spots on the planet, except for Bangladesh. It makes it personal.

I guess the Dutch will just build higher dams. Maybe if they are sweet, they could form a modern East India Company that helps the Bangladeshis, who happen to be east of India, dealing with their low-land issue as well.

On a side note: Do you think that even Google should refrain from making money from some of its content? I find it macabre to be subjected to Global Warming related text adds while looking at the end of the world as we know it. Which happens to be created by too much consumption of too much stuff by too many people.

April 12, 2008

before i forget

The WB wants your feedback. If you are any good at any of this do give them a holla. We don't want to just be bitching, do we now?

zoellick makes me regurgitate my own vomit

Why is the World Bank in the news so much this last week? Especially internationally and energetically running around the globe, giving away money, and asking for more funds to lend to the developing world? Building power stations, demanding more support to subsidize rising food prizes and generally appearing as good global citizen numero uno. And why is the WB telling you at the same time that the US economy is going down the tubes and that the rest of the world will follow. No, this is definitely not the carrot and stick strategy. No, it's not the WB telling you that you are so far up shit creek, that only the latest technocratic babyhawk, who accidentally happens to happily row by in his shit dingy, can pull you out of the putrid cesspool of international finance. What is surprising about this is, that Zoellick thinks the WB's main task is the fight against world poverty, when little old me thought they are responsible for it.

I get sidetracked. So why is Zoellick, my knight in shining armor galloping around the globe on his steel-horse? Why is the shit stuck to his boots appearing to be marginally if not magically cleaned off by a recent stint at Goldman Sachs? After years of being a good Bush clan henchman, suddenly a clean little boy is presented to us as the savior of the masses, worried about their caloric output and intake. Ah, that's right, Wolfowitz is out and Zoellick is the new Bu-shite at the helm of the WB. We need some PR, and fast!

No time to waste to throw some money at the poor brothers, never mind that debt servicing cost the third world 540 Billion USD in 2006. Let us increase the high-risk loans (not at all similar to ARMs here) to high-risk debtors, asking for high-risk premiums (no, not like ARMs
either), and suing them if they do not pay up (well, taking their planes or ships - when they land in our ports trying to sell their meager harvest at our subsidized dumping prizes - because we don't want their mud huts). Did you know that the surviving Rwandans are at this moment paying of the machetes that were used to chop of their sisters, brothers, fathers, mothers, sons and daughters limbs one by one (financed by and now being payed off to Credit Lyonnaise; produced, sold and shipped by China)? I know this is completely unbelievable, falls under the term "odious debt" and if you do not believe me => JFGI. I for one would prefer to spend the US Offensive Budget on debt relief as opposed to buying cluster bombs for Israel.

It doesn't strike me as strange at all, that when I first heard about Zoellick loving the 4 gigawatt power station in India, I immediately and instinctively was overcome by overwhelming nausea (the German "Brechreiz" is so much more descriptive of this condition). I had not been tracking Wolfowitz's Fenstersturz, news such as this is hard to track in the US, nobody rep
orts it, and so I thought Zoellick was just a footsoldier. Now my lily-livered liberal soul is, if not surprised, at least and unfortunately justified in its disgust with the status quo yet again. What really annoys me is that I do not see an article such as this in the NY Times or anywhere else for that matter (www.marx.com doesn't count). Here is today's front page of the times:

Tasteful, eh?

And do not dare to tell me that I should go to the WB myself and change the system if I am so disgusted by it. You know just as well as I do that one such as I is not allowed into those hallowed halls of world corruption. In order to enter, one must first sell one's soul then cut off one's own cojones and generally cease to be a human being
- all done voluntarily of course. Which would usually make me pity the babyhawks, but since they induce eruptious, uncontrollable vomiting, I do not. I get tired of having to clean up my keyboard and computer monitor after each article that I read.

April 11, 2008

manifesto of the enraged

"Freedom is nothing but a vain phantom when one class of men can starve another with impunity. Equality is nothing but a vain phantom when the rich, through monopoly, exercise the right of life or death over their like. The republic is nothing but a vain phantom when the counter-revolution can operate every day through the price of commodities, which three quarters of all citizens cannot afford without shedding tears."

This comes not out of the Favelas of Rio. This is not a call to arms in the shanty towns of Kibera. It was not spray painted on the mud walls of slums in Istanbul or Mumbai. You will certainly not find it in Communist China, that place makes a farce out of the brotherhood of labor.

You would have to travel through time to come across it, yet how much truth would the hungry of our day find in it still? How meaningful would it be to the mother who can not feed her children in Manila? Where is my Red Priest today? A few billion people are looking for you. The Haitians of the 21st century would follow your fiery oratory as their ancestors appreciated their freedom from the French yoke. As long as bread accompanies your words of steel you shall reign over the Republic yet.

Jacques Roux, where are you?

April 10, 2008

zoellick makes me vomit in my own mouth

Please see my post a little lower. Somehow “I told you so”, just doesn’t say it right. There was hope; as usual it was a false hope, that maybe my future would be considered. Unsurprisingly, the fat cats and the big hats think only of their checkbooks, which I am sure aren’t fat and big enough by any standards. And the bastard Zoellick dares to try disguise it by saying that he just wants to hook up his poor brothers in India with some power. How many solar panels can you buy with four billion dollar? In case you are trying to answer that question; it does not matter, because that would mean decentralized energy production, which is not under the control or part of the profit scheme of Herr Zoelick and his henchmen. Ergo, it won’t happen.

It boggles the mind, to know that locally produced and used renewable power is possible, viable and just bloody smarter, than pumping out four gigawatt of power via burning a lot of coal and shipping it from one end of a country to another. California Edison is about to install 6.5 Million SQF of Solar panels on commercial buildings in Southern California. That power feeds directly into the grid, no need for mile long cables that loose power and cause cancer. What does the World Bank do? Thinking of your welfare is certainly not it. Maybe they need an Austrian at the top, instead of a babyhawk.

Do you know how much water a four gigawatt power station uses? I don’t, but I bet you anything in the world that the fat cat’s cousin is already rubbing his hands together in anticipation of the profits from selling water to poor Indians because the naturally occurring water is sucked up by his cousin’s power station.

Do you know how much CO2 belches out of the smoke stack of a power plant like that? I don’t, but I am telling my friends to sell their beach front property. It’s a good thing I don’t have any Bangladeshi friends, because I would just have to tell them to go &@%$ themselves, like Zoellick just did, since their whole country is so low that it qualifies as beach front property. Except it ain't a beach you want to be on. They recycle your crappy scrap metal on it. I guess the alternative for them would be to just move on out, get themselves some property on Fifth Avenue, start lobbying their local congressman to build more power stations in India and China, hope that increased entropy in our climate system will not affect us on our fair and far away shores, and wait for Armageddon. Oh, I forget, they don’t have any money. I guess it's back to option one, “You and your children can go &@%$ yourselves!”

“Zoellick, are you familiar with the term Armada Storms?” I know you are not, so JFGI baby!

mental (f)loss

My boy Stamati linked me this site Mental Floss. He picked a bad day to do that. The first entry is about the Cosby Show and why the little girl is a little girl instead of a little boy. I hate TV. “Are you kidding me man? You send me a link on TV trivia? ME?!?!?! Have you flossed too hard?” FYI: most of the TV that I watch is C-Span.

Scrolled down and don’t mind it so much after all.

ARGHH, I take that back, I just went to the blog section and the top entry is a bonus (thank you SO much) quiz. Guess about what: The Office. The second entry is some stupid fucking quiz about nine actresses. Please forgive me not going there, and not adding flossing to I LIKE – not that my two readers care so much about what I do anyways.

How much further do I have to scroll on this site in order to actually find something interestingly intelligent, instead of mental masturbation? I mean it would have been reasonably funny to watch an oxygen tank explode through a little kid’s head (NOT!!!), but that video didn’t work.

I invite you to prove me wrong. Send me some links on Mental Floss that do not inundate me with inanity.

And please somebody tell me when my writing reaches fatuous qualities of similar proportions.

PS: Ok, I will go and get the magazine. Will let you know my exalted opinion later.

April 7, 2008


The river Rannofo is in the south of India. Four tributaries pay their nasty tribute to this once mighty giver of life in a great churning mass of chemical processes kicked off by various reactive particles at the more aggressive end of the Periodic Table of Elements. The levels of pollution in the tributaries are not unusual by Indian, Asian or even global standards of water pollution. One of them, the Supar, is a muddy cesspool with the olfactory properties of one of those Yellowstone mud-holes, the ones that smell like a million stink bombs had been thrown into a vast vat of vapors-inducing vapidity by especially ugly redheaded stepchildren. The second one used to be called Viriditas, the Greening Power. Today nobody remembers why it was called Viriditas. It greens no more, and nobody remembers when people started calling it something else. The new name cannot be mentioned in polite company or in front of your mother. The third one is not really a river anymore. It is not a tributary in the natural sense, where water happily springs forth from a meadow in the high Alps, or seeps out of the ground in a swampy sweet smelling marsh with dragonflies buzzing and little birds flying lazy loops in the air. It used to be all that. But now its headwaters are the spouts of a mighty coal burning power station, that produces four Gigawatt of electricity. The financing of which was approved by the World Bank on Monday April 7th, also known as the day that humanity signed its own death warrant. The fourth tributary is on fire more days than not.

Originally, I set out to write this story as a metaphor of hope in the tenacity of humanity and our amazing ability to survive horrible situations. The four tributaries would miraculously clean each other up in this great churning mass of chemical reaction. I wanted to brush the cobwebs of my old mental periodic table, and come up with a process where this becomes reality. But now that I set all the ugly veritas down on paper, I don’t want to anymore. Because if I do, somewhere some idiot will take it as a metaphor, not of destruction and willfulness, but of some magical way that we will by pure chance happen upon, enabling us to pollute the living daylights out of our home planet and happily survive in a clean world anyway. Well, it won’t so I don’t.

Your little future Gandhi of the green movement will not bath in the soothing waters of the Rannofo (orig. ran-more-four => Ranmofo => mama would wash my mouth with soap, so => ran-no-four => Rannofo), and will not discover nature’s wonderful self-cleansing ways, and will not apply his newly found idea of green resistance the world over, and will not save humanity from itself.

Instead he will die of a large amount of chemically induced ailments at a very young age. His parents knowing the reasons for his death, but nevertheless powerless to stop it, will not be able to find recourse from the polluters. The polluters are the whole entire world, and how do you sue something like that? The financiers at the World Bank, the planners of factories, the consumers of products, the drivers of cars and the users of cloth driers. It is one giant tragedy of the commons, and that description has never more hit the last nail in our coffin right on the bloody head.