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"It's morning in America, Hackenbush, and you work the nightshift."

Saturday, December 4, 2004

"But the matter of the violin touched on something deeper about the way Israelis see themselves, and their conflict with the Palestinians.

"The violinist, Wissam Tayem, was on his way to a music lesson near Nablus when he said an Israeli officer ordered him to 'play something sad' while soldiers made fun of him. After several minutes, he was told he could pass."


"Yoram Kaniuk, author of a book about a Jewish violinist forced to play for a concentration camp commander, wrote in Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper that the soldiers responsible should be put on trial 'not for abusing Arabs but for disgracing the Holocaust'.

"'Of all the terrible things done at the roadblocks, this story is one which negates the very possibility of the existence of Israel as a Jewish state. If [the military] does not put these soldiers on trial we will have no moral right to speak of ourselves as a state that rose from the Holocaust,' he wrote.

"'If we allow Jewish soldiers to put an Arab violinist at a roadblock and laugh at him, we have succeeded in arriving at the lowest moral point possible. Our entire existence in this Arab region was justified, and is still justified, by our suffering; by Jewish violinists in the camps.'"
Israel shocked by image of soldiers forcing violinist to play at roadblock, by Chris McGreal, Bellaciao.org, December 2, 2004

Huh? I must be missing something here.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 06:16 PM PST [Link]

"An unexpectedly high number of Soldiers injured in Iraq and Afghanistan are testing positive for a rare, antibiotic-resistant blood infection, Army officials said Friday. A total of 102 Soldiers tested positive for the bacteria Acinetobacter baumannii between Jan. 1, 2002 and Aug. 31, 2004."
Wounded Soldiers contract rare blood infection, by Chris Walz, Bellaciao.org, December 1, 2004

I read this article three times and still can't figure out if this is very bad or not a big deal, the POV changed from paragraph to paragraph. I do know drug-resistant anything is very bad, so I think Military medicine (hush, it's not an oxymoron) has a bigger problem here than they want to admit.

But what do I know? I'm just a civilian.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 06:07 PM PST [Link]

"This kind of defiance cannot simply be explained by Bush’s win. There has to be something in how he won, in how the election was fought, that gave this Administration the distinct impression that it had been handed a "get out of the Geneva Conventions free" card. That’s because the Administration was handed precisely such a gift -- by John Kerry."
Kerry and the Gift of Impunity, by Naomi Klein, Bellaciao.org, December 1, 2004

I know this link is old old news by now, but it fits into what I've been thinking about Kerry lately: Did one Bonesman do another Bonesman a favor this year?

No more Yalie presidential candidates for a while, okay? They're bad news all the way around.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 05:56 PM PST [Link]

Are your home phone and address all over the web? Mine were, and here's what happened:

About two years ago I moved. All my mail goes to and is forwarded to a PO Box, but I was still getting TONS of junk at the new Casa Mayerson. Eventually I discovered why, but that's another story. In this story, I'm here to tell you that that a company called Acxiom got hold of my home address and put it in their database without my consent, of course. Why would they ask? No sane person would say "Oh, yes! Please have the mail carrier cram junk mail into my mailbox every day, six days a week!" This also meant that my home phone and address ended up in every search engine on the web. Sigh.

I found these Acxiom creeps in the process of getting my phone number out of every goddam search engine on earth. I will save you the trouble, however, if you put your phone number into any search engine like this "###-###-####, area code-prefix-suffix, make sure you use dashes, and if you get a nasty surprise, look for the "removal" link for that search engine, rinse, and repeat on all the search engines you can find. It only takes, oh, less than twelve hours of your life. Then get the "Opt Out" package from the weird folks at Axciom by sending half a dozen emails asking for it to:


The "Opt Out" package is worth getting just for the bullshit, as well as to get your name out of their database. You have to mail your request to "Opt Out". They use the highest high tech to invade your privacy, but the onus is on you, and the completely underappreciated U.S. Post Office, to get your privacy back. Shamelessly, they have a brochure in the package called "Protecting Your Privacy in the Information Age", said the fox to the hens.

Here's Axciom's "Privacy" policy.

And here's an interesting tidbit from the cover form letter I got. Ahem:

"It is important to understand that names are typically rented or exchanged months before an actual marketing event takes place. Therefore, it normally takes three to six months before the opt-out will result in a noticeable decrease in the number of direct marketing solicitations a consumer receives."

So, yes, if you want out, you can get out, but not right away. Oh well. Big Brother Our Friends at Acxiom also want you, the victim, to contact another strange organization -- The Direct Marketing Association (DMA):

"Postcard or Letter Mail-in Option (Free):
"There is no charge for registering by mail. However, registering by mail may delay for a month or so inclusion in the MPS file because this requires time to manually add this data to the service. Please send a postcard or letter that includes your name, home address, and signature to us at:

"Mail Preference Service
"Direct Marketing Association
"PO Box 643
"Carmel, NY 10512"


"Telephone Preference Service
"Direct Marketing Association
"PO Box 1559
"Carmel, NY 10512"

There is more information and online forms for MAILING LISTS removal and for TELEPHONE number removal, but, incredibly, they make you pay $5 each if you use them, but, also incredibly, sending DMA paper that their staff must manually enter is free. These intrusive organizations must be naturally perverse and greedy. It's the only explanation I can come up with for this kind of chutzpa.

However, getting your email off their lists can be done online and is FREE, so that's good.

Privacy. It's like your health, you don't know what you've lost until it's gone.

Thank you for your attention. This has been a Mayerson Service Announcement.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 05:29 PM PST [Link]

Friday, December 3, 2004

Opera Bookmark Storage, because you never know when Opera's gonna toss your bookmarks.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 10:35 PM PST [Link]

"Thomas' 13-year-old daughter, Monica, said both boys and girls wear the bracelets. The game begins when a boy notices a girl wearing a bracelet. He then tries to break or snap it off her wrist. The game works the same when a boy wears the bracelet.

"If successful, the person wearing the bracelet is supposed to perform a sexual act that's determined by the bracelet's color.

"According to one Web site, black represents sex, green represents outdoor sex, orange represents a kiss, red represents a lap dance and clear is anything goes."
Bracelets carry hidden meaning. Mother: School isn't responding to kids' sex game, by Renee C. Lee, Houston Chron, December 3, 2004 (via skimble)

Goddam kids today. Why, in my day, we had to walk 11 miles in the snow to get outdoor sex.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 08:49 PM PST [Link]

Martian Death Ray to Be Tried Out In Iraq
Raytheon 'heat beam' weapon ready for Iraq
Thought Crimes, December 1, 2004

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 08:47 PM PST [Link]

Just in time for the Holidays! Give yourself or even someone else the gift of webhosting at DreamHost!

From the DreamHost Newsletter (another amazing feature) for November I just got today:

"And the other GOOD news is, for the month of December, starting just before you got this newsletter, all new shared hosting plans get TRIPLE the normal bandwidth allotment.. for the entire life of the plan! That means our plans now look like:

"Crazy Domain Insane: 120GB/month!
"Sweet Dreams: 144GB/month!!
"Code Monster: 192GB/month!!!
"Strictly Business: 264GB/month!!!!

"Oh yeah, we also dropped the overage price for bandwidth to just $1/GB on CDI and SD, and just $0.50/GB on CM and SB. Of course that's pretty much moot at this point.. who's ever going to go over these new limits!"

Just when I thought DreamHost couldn't get anymore wonderful, they DO! As said by a woman with many very popular mp3s on her site. Whew.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 08:45 PM PST [Link]

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

"Okay people, we need to think here. Cass makes it sound easy, but it really isn't. If we want to prevent homosexuals from attending ballgames and showing affection for one another, it's going to take more than a couple of judges. It's going to take legislation. It's going to take lobbying. And it's going to take vigilance. Mostly, we need to define our terms.

"For instance - ballplayers regularly show affection for one another. Hugging, butt-slapping, jumping-all-over-each-other affection. So do fans, come to think of it. But the fans and players aren't gay. Well, maybe some of them are, but they're showing good, clean game-related affection, not sexual affection, right? So that's a start. Pass some anti-non-game-related-affection laws and we've stopped those same-sex stadium smoochers in their tracks..."
A League of Their Own Fanatical Apathy, November 29, 2004 (via Sisyphus Shrugged)

I would say it would depend on the smooch. I think we'd have to take these smooches on a smooch by smooch basis. I've seen some hetro kisses that were complete horrors. I say have some smooch standards for everyone. Smooch Equality. Tha's what I say.

"... rubbing their gayitude in our faces..."

It would depend on the gayitude.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 06:42 AM PST [Link]

Monday, November 29, 2004

"The bright spotlight of the Los Angeles mayor's race has attracted a cast of nationally known political consultants, including strategists who played key roles in the presidential campaigns of Howard Dean, Richard Gephardt, Wesley Clark and Al Gore."
Mayoral Hopefuls Bring In Big Guns. In an election off year, the high-profile race draws high-caliber political consultants, some with experience in national battles., by Patrick McGreevy, LA Times, November 29, 2004

Oh, where have we sinned?!

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 09:26 PM PST [Link]

"Asked whether he has a strategy to expand blogging under China’s censorship regime, his (Isaac Mao's) response is Taoist: "What is our strategy? We do not have a strategy. But the information flow in the blogosphere has its own Way. The Way is our strategy: personal, fast, connected and networked.'"
The 'blog' revolution sweeps across China, by Xiao Qiang, New Scientist, November 24, 2004

I'm just not cool enough to understand that quote, but I liiiike it.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 05:24 PM PST [Link]

A photo moment brought to you by the good folks at Thought Crimes.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 05:22 PM PST [Link]

Sunday, November 28, 2004

"A country whose political dialogue is all about values is either a country with no serious problems or a country hiding from its serious problems. When I want values, I go to Wal-Mart."
To Hell With Values, by Michael Kinsley, LA Times, November 28, 2004 (via Jim at Rittenhouse)

You said it, brother.

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 09:59 PM PST [Link]

More Teens and LJ.

Hey, I don't make this stuff up. I couldn't.

EDIT: Oh, and here's a graphic that kind of sums it up. (Yes, I did look at her LJ, I couldn't help myself.)

Posted by Ginger Mayerson @ 03:16 PM PST [Link]

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