Saturday, August 26, 2006

Speedlinking 8/26/06


~ Empty place by ~iterater on deviantART

Happy weekend. Yesterday began Be Kind to Humankind Week, and today's injunction is Speak Kind Words. Check out Be Kind Week for more info.

~ Dave at via negativa has a great post on pear economics. I was reminded of my life growing up in Southern Oregon with fruit trees in farmer's fields that we'd steal apples and pears from, and the small, sour green apples we'd pick to feed to the horses. Good stuff.

~ Dave Pollard at How to Save the World has a great post that is much more personal than some of the theoretical stuff he often shares with us. He even quotes TS Eliot.

~ Frank Visser at Wilber Watch takes a look at the issue of Depth and Complexity when talking about body and spirit: "As is well known by now, in the integral view mind, soul and spirit are not seen as meta-physical, but intra-physical, as Wilber tirelessly repeats in his recent writings." I think Visser is on to something in suggesting this statement is off the mark, but he needs to flesh out his argument with some examples from consciousness studies.

~ Matthew Dallman adds his voice to the issue of the recent Wilber parody, with a defense of Falk (with which I disagree in part because Falk has not limited his criticism of Wilber to specific areas but has repeatedly attacked the whole integral approach and Wilber himself -- very childishly on occasion), and an invitation to get off the Wilber train and try on a more expansive version of integral. He then quotes a comment he left at Vomitting Confetti, which is a pretty pointed assault on Wilber's progression over the years -- and an assault with merit.

~ ebuddha at Integral Practice quotes (fantasy author) George R.R. Martin on the topic of freedom, and asks if the author's desire to enjoy the protections offered by the Bill of Rights is overstating the case. Check it out.

~ Alexis at Zaadz has more humor to share, this time on the topic of exercise.

~ About.com on Buddhism presents the Cliff Notes version of a commentary on the Heart Sutra.

~ Alan Cook at Milinda's Questions is having a Saturday morning garage sale of links he is clearing from his bookmarks, but he wanted to share them with us in case we might have interest. Some of them look pretty good.

~ clocke at mystic bourgeoisie has a very interesting post on I'm not sure what, but I read the whole damn thing and was very interested.

~ P2P Foundation blogs on Bookmooch, a new book sharing iniative.

~ Bill at Oaksong's Nemeton takes an inkblot test and discovers he is an assasin for hire. And he always seemed so friendly, no one in the neighborhood would have ever thought he was an assasin. He seemed like such a normal pagan guy.

~ Steve Pavlina explains why "intention manifestation" sometimes doesn't work. My overly skeptical mind (he's in charge this morning) says," Yeah, sure, you betcha."

~ More and more people think the Bush administration is in the process of building their case for war with Iran, a process that has really been underway since the beginning of the year. Involuntary conscriptions of inactive military, new talk of "universal service" to put the US on a war footing, and a call for selective service call-ups are getting some coverage. It's starting to feel a lot like wartime . . .

As U2 once said, "Outside, it's America."

~ Common Dreams suggests that the fact that Chuck Hagel happens to have once led and still partially owns the company that owns the company that made the machines that counted the votes when he was elected with unprecedented landslides poses some problems.
Back when Hagel first ran there for the U.S. Senate in 1996, his company's computer-controlled voting machines showed he'd won stunning upsets in both the primaries and the general election. The Washington Post (1/13/1997) said Hagel's "Senate victory against an incumbent Democratic governor was the major Republican upset in the November election." According to Bev Harris of www.blackboxvoting.org, Hagel won virtually every demographic group, including many largely Black communities that had never before voted Republican. Hagel was the first Republican in 24 years to win a Senate seat in Nebraska.
But here is why you should care:

Perhaps, after a half-century of fine-tuning exit polling to such a science that it's now sometimes used to verify how clean elections are in Third World countries, it really did suddenly become inaccurate in the United States in the past six years and just won't work here anymore. Perhaps it's just a coincidence that the sudden rise of inaccurate exit polls happened around the same time corporate-programmed, computer-controlled, modem-capable voting machines began recording and tabulating ballots.

But if any of this is true, there's not much of a paper trail from the voters' hand to prove it.

You'd think in an open democracy that the government - answerable to all its citizens rather than a handful of corporate officers and stockholders - would program, repair, and control the voting machines. You'd think the computers that handle our cherished ballots would be open and their software and programming available for public scrutiny. You'd think there would be a paper trail of the vote, which could be followed and audited if a there was evidence of voting fraud or if exit polls disagreed with computerized vote counts.

You'd be wrong.

Wait a minute . . . where am I? Are you sure this is still the United States of America?

Yeah, okay, I'm depressed now.

~ On the lite side, Andy Borowitz reports that Tom Cruise and Mel Gibson plan to build a movie studio on the moon due to their dwindling options here on earth.

And that's a wrap. I need to go meditate for a while.


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