Bear Droppings
Thursday, July 31, 2003
I have a job, nice to have resolved that, I won't be making bank, but it should cover the bills. And stay here in Sedona.
Music industry price fixing I am shocked, shocked, to discover that it's going on er still ... and they wonder why people don't have a moral issue with download music.

Next thing you know there will be a news story of them cheating the Artists...
Sunday, July 27, 2003
Today's Foxtrot absolute Gold for copyright issues! (Good until 12pm EDT 07/28/03 but I'll update the archive later)
The biggest lesson I have learned thus far in life is don't close your mind to opportunities. Saw something today that would make me practice what I preach, I dunno right now it's just an application, but honestly a year ago I couldn't seeming myself applying to such a job, life is strange, and let's just try to be open to the opportunity.
Friday, July 25, 2003
Blogathon is here tomorrow, while I won't be participating this year I'll be reading. To particpants good luck and to everyone else consider sponsoring a blogger.
This morning's post has my mind spinning with potential campaign slogans, here are just a few, if you have one of your own please submit it to the comments, thanks!

Traficant, man of the people, come on don't tell me you haven't cheated on your taxes too?

Traficant in 2004, Help us find the one-armed man!

Crazy like Kucinich, but much better hair.

Traficant, he makes Sharpton look sane!

Traficant: Beam Him Up out of prison and into the White House!

Traf is Back!
You'd underestimate the staying power of former Representative Traficant if you think a little thing like prison would keep him out of the news. That's right folks, he's running for President. I wonder if he needs an Arizona camapign manager, no stress about visits from the candidate but the pay probably would not be very good. (Thanks to Lex)

Traficant in 2004!
Thursday, July 24, 2003
These guys are walking from Chicago to San Francisco, good luck!
More on Mobs
Interest grows in Flash Mobs as evidenced by the number of cities that trying to organize them, plus the number of folks who are search for them in my hit counter. Yahoo Groups has been utilized as the tool of choice for organizers in new cities to reach out and find potential Mob members in there local community. The list of cities continues to grow with groups starting in Phoenix, Minneapolis, and Dallas-Ft Worth. I missed a number of other cities that have started lists, but if you can go to Yahoo Groups it is probably the best place to look on the web. In addition there are two sites that are covering the issue and FlockSmart.

Like any other culture tide swell, there is a counter to the Mob that has been proposed the Antimob. My impression is the proposed idea is a bit tongue in cheek
"The concept is the opposite of the Mob Project. In
Antimob, we all agree not to be at a certain location for a brief
period of time. If all humanity participates, the sudden
ghost town appearance of a place like Grand Central Station
or the Motor Vehicle Bureau in Chicago will be stunning.
Antimob requires little of its participants, so that
billions of people, without even knowing of the non-event, will be
participating in this first example of non-performance art.
But to make it anything more than a joke there would have to be a vast network to inform people to specifically avoid Grand Central Station from 5:00-5:15pm on a Tuesday afternoon. Even if in theory it could be done, I think it would be vaguely akin to the thought if a tree falls in a forest and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound? In addition the curiosity factor would get the better of some people and so they would go to look and see if it happened, hence ruining the point.

Fad or new cultural event, only time will tell.
Wednesday, July 23, 2003
Monsoon Nights
A downside of the wonderful summer storms is that it here in Sedona it fills the skies with clouds. But for the first night in a week at least the sky is clear, the storm clouds blew north or to some other part of the state. It has left us with the beautiful starry skies, the kind I have missed so much while living in the East. It left me in awe, pondering the world, amazed by the simple beauty of the night.
Whoever checked the site from NAU or anyone else in Flagstaff interested in a Flag flash mob let me know if you organize one, thanks! Email is at the top of the page, just be sure to remove the NOSPAM part.
Poetry Wednesday
Back to the normal Wednesday post, last night I went to a Camphorweed poetry reading so I'll give alittle recognition, by citing James' book Undercards, he read a funny poem about love and a cactus. But I'll post another poem from the same book.

Morning at the Desert Inn Motel
In the space between
the door and the frame the songs
of the birds come in---
James Jay

Fully armed Nazi bomber planes 'buried below East Berlin airport'
This story doesn't surprise me, this happened a lot in East Germany that the Communists never cleaned up messes. There is an example I remember of a military live fire range, it had been in use since Bismark and after unification the West started to clean it up to open the land for use. The problem is it has an average of one piece of ordnance per square meter and it was going to take something like 20 years to clear the site. The quote from a worker was a good day we cover 3 meters, a bad day we go 10cm. it will be interesting to follow this story and see what becomes of it.
CNN proves again, how much of a trusted news source they are... why am I not surprised.
Tuesday, July 22, 2003
Freedom and Security
These words filled my mind when I began thinking today about when I pondered three recent stories in concert.

First John Gilmore: I was ejected from a plane for wearing "Suspected Terrorist" button

Second FBI interviews someone about their reading material

Third Cartoon in Times prompts inquiry by Secret Service

If anyone story had occurred in isolation, you might make the light of it and suggest Gilmore was being a jerk or just the actions of some overzealous officers. The problem is when you see it occurring over and over again a chilling trend emerges that is an inherent danger to our basic freedoms.

I have quoted this phrase a few times since the attacks of September 11th and it bears repeating "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." (Ben Franklin)

Actions like these will not provide us with any more security, but will take away our freedom. In order to survive the current times with our basic liberities intact we must speak out and ensure such acts are seen in the full light of day. That word of them spreads to among people. People speak out to elected officials, in the media, and when faced with such situations are not afraid to confront an ugly reality.

What is the old phrase? I love my country, but fear my government. I know well enough that most of these people are decent people trying to do their job. But we need to make sure they know where the line is and that if they cross it, they will be held accountable.

All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.- Edmund Burke

Sunday, July 20, 2003
Flash Mobs hit Europe
It looks like Flash Mobs will be hitting the continent before the UK. Rather that debate the issue the Italians (in English) are rushing ahead with it. I wish my Italian source could make it for a report but considering he is a good 8 hours away, I rather doubt he'll make the journey for a 10 minute mob.

Interesting write up of a Brits view on the Flash Mob idea though it does more tend towards the radical side it gives you an insight to the potential uses of the mobs.

Wonder what a Mob looks like in person check The Official Record, they have video of the latest New York mob.
Friday, July 18, 2003
MSNBC has a write up on Flash Mobs interestingly the writer actually attended and participated in the event, not just wrote about it, great concept, how original. ;)

The writer does echo something that has been in my mind
I can’t help wonder how long flash mobs can remain purposeless. The power of this phenomenon is clear, but it seems like it would be easy to hijack. How many PETA protestors would it have taken to give the impression that the hundreds in last night’s mob were there to protest leather shoes? How long before money enters the picture?
I can see it used for political protest, but I don't think as a marketing tool it will have the same impact, some people may be fooled into participating in one to promote a company or product once or twice then turn off on the idea unless it's associated with a cause or group they have affinity with. There even may become social groups that organize on the basis of forming these mobs. Except for larger urban centers I think it is more of a fad that will fade rather than a long term part of the social fabric. Middle America is too suburban and car driven culturally for it too be much more than a fashionable game/event. But in places like San Francisco, New York, Tokyo, major cities in Europe I can see it as the future of political protest.
French Government Bans Term 'E-Mail'

When I learned a bit of French way back in high school, I thought that this French trait to ban terms and come up with new French pure terms kind of funny and cute little thing to do.

But I now reconsidered that thought and came to another conclusion, it's another sign of the slow cultural death occurring in France. Healthy cultures, like any other organism, grow develop and change, they let their enviroment have an impact on then and vice versa. But this conceptial barrier they erect like their economic laws and fights to protect the current CAP policy are representative of a culture in decline, trapped but it's old traditions and unwilling to grow, evolve, and change with the times. This mindset holds France back as well as the development of the EU into a more coherent and representative structure.

For all my Germanophile background, I wish the French well and confess they have a beautiful country. They have a lot of things to proud of, but they need to awaken to the modern world. People like Sabine Herold give me hope for their future. I wish her and her compatriots luck and think they will need it.
What does your name mean?
I found this interesting link on defining what your last name means, it worked well for my name...

English, patronymic derived from Latin name Vincent 'conquering.'

If you have a Slavic name though you may be out of luck I looked up my Mom's maiden name and didn't get anything.

Thursday, July 17, 2003
Just back from an unexpected trip to Phoenix, I hate Phoenix in the summer time, out of the blast furance and back to the Sedona oven. At least it cools off here at night, one night in Phoenix, the LOW was 96 degrees.

Still need that haircut...
The latest on Flash Mobs, this time from San Francisco and New York.
Tuesday, July 15, 2003
Yes, I am awake and none to happy about it, it may have something to do with less than half of my daily recommend caffiene fix, but when you awake late and the cabin is already 90 degrees hot liquids are not a recommended item. I stayed up a bit late last night, okay 4am chatting away with folks online, which is fun, free and entertaining does not help on the job front. My solution to all this, road trip to Flag for a haircut, yes all 15 strands, and perhaps a networking coffee with the local economic development office.

Monday, July 14, 2003
I don't often find myself in agreement with Senator Schumer, but this time I do. (Thanks Doc)
Wow who knew Jesus was so powerful. I think Jesus told me I should go to Phoenix and buy a Mini for only 100 dollars. Praise the Lord and pass the sports car!
Saturday, July 12, 2003
Are you ready for some football?
I fired up the annual fantasy football league today so if you are interested in playing let me know. League fees are only $20. So far I have five confirmed teams, but I'd like to have twelve.
Friday, July 11, 2003
Raging Cow, Raging Cow, Raging Cow, Raging Cow, Raging Cow

Ummmm folks just ignore these are not the Raging Cows you are looking for.
Some days I really enjoy the net, chatting with people riding a train in Slovenia, in California, drinkin a pint of Guinness in Ireland, or the always entertaining Aussies. We aren't fully a global culture learning and exchanging experiences, but everyday it seems we get a little closer, maybe there is hope for us yet.
Been wondering what the lastest on the fire down in Tucson looks like, ask NASA for a look. (Thanks Kerry)
Thursday, July 10, 2003
Job Hunt
Moxie has a funny tale about her job hunt, I can't say that is exactly like that Sedona's environment is pure service economy, ala would you like fries with that? but of course having a poli sci degree means I am overqualified. Something will break.


I hope.
Wednesday, July 09, 2003
Poerty Wednesday


I am a man: little do I last
and the night is enormous.
But I look up:
the stars write.
Unknowing I understand:
I too am written.
and at this moment
someone spells me out.
- Octavio Paz, translated by Eliot Weinherger, The Kanguage of Life

Wow, the best article on school socialization, specifically high school I think I have ever read. (Thanks Kevin)
Tuesday, July 08, 2003
I have only been on Joi Ito's irc channel for a bit and I can tell this drinking game will get you drunk, very, very quickly.
Reading Day by Day yet? Why not? I like Howard Dean
More on Flash Mobs, this time from Minnesota, who knows, if they can do it, maybe they really could do one in Phoenix, on second thought, naaaaaw. Who would wanna get out of the AC long enough to do it.
Summer in Northern Arizona
Let's see the roads are packed with tourists,

the temperatures are rising (but no humidity),

and Slide Rock is closed for E.coli danger.

Yup, just another summer in Northern Arizona, thankfully no major forest fires. *knocks on wood*
Monday, July 07, 2003
Declan features a brief interview with Ian Clarke, inventor of Freenet, and Matt Oppenheim, RIAA's senior vice president of business and legal affairs. I am a little disappointed with Declan because he asks Do corporations right now have too much power to investigate alleged copyright infringement online? Where should the line be drawn?... (Clarke's response omitted)

Oppenheim: How does this have anything to do with corporations? This has to do with artists and creators. Artists and creators, like anybody else who creates something, should have the right to sell what they create...Indeed, most artists spend a lifetime trying to sell the result of their efforts to record companies so that they may make a living making music. At the end of the day, that is a great thing for music lovers--otherwise artists would have a lot less time to create the music we all love.

How does this have anything to do with corporations? This has to do with artists and creators. This is an important point and Declan should have followed up on it. The truth is this has EVERYTHING to do with artists and creators, WHEN you are talking to them. The RIAA does not in fact represent them at all. They have no members that are artist just the corporations. Don't take my word for it look what they state on their own website or if look at a list of their members and find artists in there. So Declan's question is very valid to this point and was wholesale ignored.

As someone who has worked for a trade association I know the truth you work for your membership. Nothing wrong with that, that is why they pay you money to be a member. If you are not representing their interest then they shouldn't be a member. But this lying paying lip service to artists and creators when you know is an act of intellectual dishonesty doesn't stand and Declan should have called him on it.
Saturday, July 05, 2003
Life Choices
I stood out and looked at the night sky, thinking about the town I left behind. The life I did as well, not sure of the future and living in uncertain times without a job or much fianances but with a certainty of purpose, I'll get there and this is where I need to be, it makes me smile and on a quiet Saturday night in Northern Arizona, just now it's plenty.
Friday, July 04, 2003
Fourth of July
When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.--Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.
Have a happy Fourth I am off to volunteer at an art fair at a local museum and then enjoy picnic with friends.

Thursday, July 03, 2003
Flash Mobs
I have been getting a few hits for flash mobs from a number of cities including Chicago, San Francisco, and Phoenix. Sorry I have no immediate information cheese bikini and Gawker have been covering the issue regularly, you might keep an eye out there. I have no doubts they will turn up sooner or later in San Francisco and they may likely be the first to use them for political protest. I even can believe Chicago will have them too, but Phoenix does not really have a culture that promotes mobs or their emergence.

Culturally speaking it wouldn't fit, San Francisco, New York even Chicago have elements that random strangers could meet and form a mob, but Phoenix is so car driven that it would be difficult for a mob to form without people noticing a mass of cars suddenly appearing in a place.

In the first mob the location was an accessories shop in Phoenix this would be located either in a strip mall or a shopping center. The second was at Macy's which a major department store means a shopping center. If you tried to have a mob even in a stripmall it would quickly get over loaded by the huge volume of cars. Which leaves a shopping center are only what 15-20 of these valley and Westcor and the local governments are going to freak once a mob is attempted. Look at how they treat cruisers if you don't think so. Lastly after the Mob, people need to melt away in a city that isn't an issue, New York for example has buses, cabs, trains and walk away on the street so no obvious sign of the Mob remains, but in Phoenix how will people leave an event and evaporate to thin air.

The problem is in Phoenix it is not a city with cultural and shopping districts, just suburbia, stripmalls, and megamalls. So I won't discount the possiblity of them forming, but it just will not be as effective or dramatic in appearance. While I cite Phoenix because I know it, I think it would apply to alot areas of America. While an interest concept you need a true mass urban environment to carry it out. That said watch someone prove me wrong.
Interesting day in history, my personal favorite point is 32 years ago when Jim Morrison passed away and someone else was born.
Once in a great while Montini has something important to say, as a former DC resident I think this is a great idea, but while your at it a total ban on tourons would be pleasant.
Wednesday, July 02, 2003
New AZ Blog
Robert Franciosi at the Goldwater Institute, welcome! (Thanks Edward, two posts one day see you ought to be reading Zonitics, good stuff over there)
Poetry Wednesday
In honor of the previous bears post, a poem about a famous bear.

Smokey the Bear heads
into the autumn woods
with a red can of gasoline
and a box of wooden matches.

His ranger's hat is cocked
at a disturbing angle.

His brown fur gleams
under the high sun
as his paws, the size
of catchers' mitts,
crackle into the distance.

He is sick of dispensing
warnings to the careless,
the half-wit camper,
the dumbbell hiker.

He is going to show them
how a professional does it.
- Billy Collins, Grrrrr: A Collection of Poems About Bears

A signal from nature
A grizzly bear forced two campers to retreat into a lake before snatching their Doritos and smashing them into little pieces.

"He just left this little sawdust pile of broken chips," camper Daynna Dowell said.

Bears for those of you who don't know will eat damn near anything from rotting animal carcass to berries to human garbage, so refusing to eat Doritos might be a hint to avoid them, just my $.02.

PS - A bear decides to see what's happening around a NY town. Surprised he wasn't signed for the NBA draft.

FOLLOWUP they killed the Doritos bear :(
Sometimes I think does Arizona deserve the backwards reputation it sometimes has, then I see a story like this and know the answer is yes. (Thanks Edward)

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