Get your bucket o' popcorn and your 64oz Big Gulp of sodeepop ready. This one is rated "R" for ridiculous. Let's see, a Bush appointed snake handler is in charge of figuring out how to postpone the election in the event of a terrorist attack? Oh sure. Why not? Can you imagine trying to make up nonsense like this!? You couldn't do it!U.S. officials have discussed the idea of postponing Election Day in the event of a terrorist attack on or about that day, a Homeland Security Department spokesman said Sunday.
The department has referred questions about the matter to the Department of Justice's Office of Legal Counsel, said spokesman Brian Roehrkasse, confirming a report in this week's editions of Newsweek magazine.
Newsweek said the discussions about whether the November 2 election could be postponed started with a recent letter to Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge from DeForest Soaries Jr., chairman of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission.
The commission was set up after the disputed 2000 presidential vote to help states deal with logistical problems in their elections.
Soaries, who was appointed by President Bush, is a former New Jersey secretary of state and senior pastor of the 7,000-member First Baptist Church of Lincoln Gardens in Somerset.
The mistake we make---as informed and active individuals---is that we believe that others will "see the light" if they just knew what we knew.
This isn't the case.
The vast majority of people simply refuse to look. And many of those who do take the time and energy to delve deeper find that they want to quickly return to the warmth and comfort of their fictional belief systems that have been made real and tolerable by copious amounts of booze, television and profligate consumerism.
The Internet creates a fallacy, though, that activists and dissidents etc. are making a difference. In reality, the Internet allows people like us to find each other, interact and pat ourselves on the back. There are various self congratulatory articles, lots of emails of appreciation, posts to newsgroups, etc. What tangible effect does all of this have on core policies? Hmmm?
Are the elite quaking in their boots yet?
Don't hold your breath.
Much of this online nonsense is just another monkey trap that distracts us away from doing anything significant. It's just beating around the bush... After years of doing this, I have concluded that this amounts to nothing more than preaching to the choir. There's nothing wrong with that. It's an ok way to meet interesting people, etc. It just doesn't lead to any tangible shift in the policies that affect our lives the most. Political dissent, protests, and voting have about as much to do with affecting change as playing video games, watching football or sitting in traffic.
In 1984, George Orwell writes:
Being in a minority, even a minority of one, did not make you mad. There was truth and there was untruth, and if you clung to the truth even against the whole world, you were not mad.
The only hope for the individual is to create his or her own reality in spite of the fact that the rest of society has gone mad. Like-minded individuals must seek each other out, and provide for a common defense against the heirarchies that wish to kill or enslave them.
Society, in general, is a massive freight train that is heading toward oblivion at maximum speed. Those of us who know what is happening, and oppose it, have roughly the same capacity to stop that train as a bunch of ants meandering along the tracks.
The more I learn about this society, however, the more I ask myself, "Why would anyone want to stop this train?" At this point, I have as much contempt for the elite as I do for the fat, dumb troglodyte masses. It's abundantly clear that people, in general, want to be imprisoned; they want the ugly reality. Who am I to presume that it should be any other way? Lead, follow or get out of the way. <--- I'd focus primarily on that last option.
I have a different outlook now. More SUVs, WalMarts on every corner, dump your used motor oil into the sea and make parking lots out of all remaining open space. We don't have long to wait now, the end of the line is in sight, and to the conductor at the controls of this crazy train, I say:
"More coal, my man. More coal."Related Story #1: Half of U.S. Shuns LiteratureA report released yesterday by the US national endowment for the arts says the number of adults who read no literature increased by more than 17 million between 1992 and 2002.
It found that 47% of American adults read poems, plays or narrative fiction in 2002, a drop of seven percentage points from a decade earlier. Those reading any books at all in 2002 fell to 57%, from 61%.
The NEA chairman, Dana Gioia, said the findings were shocking.
"We have a lot of functionally literate people who are no longer engaged readers," Mr Gioia said. "This isn't a case of 'Johnny Can't Read', but 'Johnny Won't Read'.
"We're seeing an enormous cultural shift from print media to electronic media, and the unintended consequences of that shift."
A total of 89.9 million adults did not read books in 2002. The number of books bought in the US in 2003 was reported in May to have fallen by 23m from the year before, to 2.2 bn.
The NEA study was based on a survey of more than 17,000 adults. The drop in reading was widespread, but the fall was marked for adult men, of whom only 38% read literature, and Hispanics overall, for whom the figure was 26.5%.
The decline was especially severe among 18 to 24-year-olds. Only 43% had read any literature in 2002, down from 53% in 1992.Related Story #2: Americans Object to Graphic War Images They Sought OnlineHalf of Americans object to the online availability of graphic war images, though millions have actively sought them out, a new study finds.
In a report released Thursday, the Pew Internet and American Life Project also found a major cultural divide: Men, Democrats and younger Americans were more likely to approve of having such images on the Web.
Television, newspapers and the Web sites of mainstream media outlets generally refrained from using the most graphic images of Iraqi prisoner abuses and the killings of Nicholas Berg and other Americans in Iraq.
But photos and even video could be readily found elsewhere, at anti-war sites, Web journals, the Drudge Report and discussion boards frequented by sympathizers of terror groups.
According to the study, 24 percent of adult Internet users, or 30 million people, have seen such graphic images online, and 28 percent of those people actively sought them out. That comes out to more than 8 million active seekers.
Yet overall, Americans disapprove of the postings by a margin of 49 percent to 40 percent. Another 4 percent say approval depends on circumstances, while the rest wouldn't say or have no opinion.
A third of the Americans who saw the images - some 10 million - regret doing so.
Sree Sreenivasan, a Columbia University online media professor who is not connected with the study, said Americans aren't always prepared for what they click, even though many links carry warnings about the images' graphic nature.
"Our experiences on the Internet are built upon experiences with previous media," he said. "What's graphic in most people's minds is a slasher movie or a Sopranos episode with a beheading. Those don't prepare you for how graphic (these images) could be."
Lee Rainie, director of the Pew study, said Americans generally embrace the principle that more information is better, "but once they encounter real-life applications of that principle, in many cases, they are unhappy."
MSNBC.com cloaked the more disturbing images with a black "curtain" carrying a warning before visitors click. But the most graphic images were left off the site entirely, consistent with NBC broadcast guidelines, said Dean Wright, the site's editor in chief.
"We want our Web site to be a place where the mainstream news consumer can feel safer," he said.
He said a small number of visitors complained that the site was censoring the reality of war, just as a small group complained that even the moderate images were too much. But he said visitors were overall happy with MSNBC's judgment calls.