Monday, April 30, 2007

Live Earth; 7 concerts, 7 countries, all in 1 day!

Hat tip to Betmo!, (Life's Journey)
7 7 07 will be the day for 7 concerts. The concerts in the US and the UK are already for sale. This is where the concerts will be held:

US: Giants Stadium, East Rutherford, New Jersey
UK: Wembley Stadium, London
Brazil: Copacabana Beach, Rio de Janeiro
South Africa: The Cradle of Human Kind, Maropeng near Johannesburg
Japan: Tokyo Dome, Tokyo
China: (location TBD), Shanghai
Australia: Aussie Stadium , Moore Park, Sydney

Get tickets HERE!

For more information, visit Live Earth


Saturday, April 28, 2007

Great Song; You know I'm No Good

Amy Winehouse
Hope you enjoy this one too Zee...

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AustinPermie: The Nuclear Energy Debate, part 1

AustinPermie: The Nuclear Energy Debate, part 1

Join me in this debate in my other 'austin permie' blog. I am going to explore this whole nuclear energy debate, from the worries about the North Pole disappearing in 30 yrs, to environmentalists who are pro-nuclear energy, to the reason why this issue is more important than terrorism, to the nuclear fuel recycling issues etc. etc.
This is a hotly debated issue in the 'green zone', but one to definitely NOT shy away from.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Are you bored? Check out GOOGLE EARTH.

Sometimes the Darfur Button on the right does not show up. But I invite you to check out Google Earth's Crisis in Darfur. Or CBS Seismic Monitor. Or NASA Blue Marble. It has much more though. For a few moments to play, click HERE!

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Sunday, April 22, 2007

AustinPermie: Greening the Desert#links

AustinPermie: Greening the Desert#links

What? Linking to your OWN blog?? Yep. It's easier than posting all over again. I LOVE this video. I think it's so inspiring. I wish that all over the Middle East and other, very dry regions, they would adopt this approach.

Former Reagan Advisor angry Bush 'bankrupted America'


Hat tip to Kvatch, AKA Kommander Kvatch, for this post I saw on his 'civilian' site, Blognonymous. (you're not supposed to criticize the Commander-in-Chief now are you? I'll let this one slide Kommander!)
This article came via Raw Story:

Conservative economist Bruce Bartlett accused President Bush of "bankrupting" America and betraying the Reagan legacy in an interview on PBS's Tavis Smiley Show on Tuesday.

A domestic policy adviser to President Ronald Reagan and a treasury official under President George H.W. Bush, Bartlett assailed Bush's "big government conservatism" and said he was surprised at Bush's policies, despite his campaign pledge to be a "compassionate conservative."

When asked how the current President Bush compared to his father, Bartlett responded, "If I didn't know with a certainty they were related, I wouldn't think that they were."

Bartlett also argued that current conservative fiscal rhetoric regarding supply-side economics is outdated. "We have a completely different economic situation, completely different fiscal and tax situation and I think people are still using rhetoric that was appropriate at one time for a situation that in which it is no longer appropriate."
(bold added by yours truly)

Check out the story or read the transcript of the interview. Click on .
Raw Story

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Saturday, April 21, 2007

Started a new site!

As some of you know, I'm big time interested and into permaculture even though most of you probably still do not know what it is. Well, I decided to start a permie blog so I would focus my sustainable, 'green', environmental and socially and economically and politically pertinent posts on that one. It's called the Austin Permie and I already got into a snag with the new features Blogger is offering. I linked ALL my favourite sites to it and nada..can't see a thing on the site. Well, I do not have anymore time to play around. I sooo need to go to a babyshower. My husband and kids already went an hour ago (I'm chilling and enjoying the peace and quiet) but I do need to hussle my touchie into the shower and into getting dressed.. (is it 11am already??? aah, how nice to be alone!)
Anyhow, check it out for future reference: Austin Permie.

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Sand Traveller: Everything you need to know about Australia

Sand Traveller: Everything you need to know about Australia

Australia is top on my list of countries that I would love to visit. Of course, it would have to be a for a long walkabout. Check out this post, it is written with aussie humour. Btw a dunney in your neck of the woods?!

Friday, April 20, 2007

The Armenian Holocaust

Taner Akcam

The internet is a great place, and as many bloggers know, also a place where spite, hate and suspicion can easily be thrown at you. Consider this story:

Could it possibly be that the security men who guard the frontiers of North America are supporting Holocaust denial? Alas, it's true. Here's the story.

Taner Akcam is the distinguished Turkish scholar at the University of Minnesota who, with immense courage, proved the facts of the Armenian genocide - the deliberate mass murder of up to a million and a half Armenians by the Ottoman Turkish authorities in 1915 - from Turkish documents and archives. His book A Shameful Act was published to great critical acclaim in Britain and the United States.

He is now, needless to say, being threatened with legal action in Turkey under the infamous Law 301 - which makes a crime of insulting "Turkishness" - but it's probably par for the course for a man who was granted political asylum in Germany after receiving an eight-year prison sentence in his own country for articles he had written in a student journal; Amnesty International had already named him a prisoner of conscience.

But Mr Akcam has now become a different kind of prisoner: an inmate of the internet hate machine, the circle of hell in which any political filth or personal libel can be hurled at the innocent without any recourse to the law, to libel lawyers or to common decency. The Armenian-Turkish journalist Hrant Dink was misquoted on the internet for allegedly claiming that Turkish blood was "poisonous"; this total lie - Dink never said such a thing - prompted a young man to murder him in an Istanbul street.

But Taner Akcam's experience is potentially far more serious for all of us. As he wrote in a letter to me this month, "Additional to the criminal investigation (law 301) in Turkey, there is a hate campaign going on here in the USA, as a result of which I cannot travel internationally any more... My recent detention at the Montreal airport - apparently on the basis of anonymous insertions in my Wikipedia biography - signals a disturbing new phase in a Turkish campaign of intimidation that has intensified since the November 2006 publication of my book."

In the blogosphere, there are those that use their anonymity to behave and 'talk' the way they most likely can't in person. There are also many of us, who are in it for the shared discussions, agreement or not. I have a great sense of entitlement when it comes to speaking once mind. Even if it is something I absolutely not agree with. You can criticize the message, but not the messenger. I also equally LOATH blackmail and cowardness of the degree that is displayed in this story. Having had Armenian friends, this Armenian Holocaust is not a big revelation. But as with any story, from which ever side, trying to shut someone up because you don't like what they have to say ticks me off big time. The big cowardess in this story is using the current fear climate of 'terrorists' and falsely accusing people, throwing suspicion on them. And in this current climate, any suggestion seems to be impossible to reject because after all, there is the need to 'protect' the country, isn't it?
It is indeed a Shameful Act!

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Thursday, April 19, 2007

Changing SOMEthing

Some of my blogger buddies are constantly changing the look of their site (you know who you are), and some stick to their tried and true formula. I've been wanting to change something about the site but am not quite sure what. I have been toying with the idea of changing the name and of course also the look. I need some input guys..what would you suggest I'd change? Keep or leave out? Or add? Don't feel shy and don't worry about hurting my feelings.. I need feedback 'ya'll'!

Banning grocery bags? Austin perhaps to follow San Fran

No Bag Thanks

This morning I heard on the radio that Austin's City Council was going to debate whether to follow San Fransisco's lead in banning plastic grocery bags. The HEB and Central Market and Whole Food stores here already sell canvas bags for people to use in lieu of them, but banning the plastic bags would have a great impact on our local landfills:

Paper or plastic? Not anymore in San Francisco.
The city's Board of Supervisors approved groundbreaking legislation Tuesday to outlaw plastic checkout bags at large supermarkets in about six months and large chain pharmacies in about a year.

The ordinance, sponsored by Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi, is the first such law in any city in the United States and has been drawing global scrutiny this week.

Mirkarimi's legislation is one in a string of environmentally sensitive measures -- such as outlawing Styrofoam food containers and encouraging clean-fuel construction vehicles at city job sites -- adopted by the city in recent months.

"It's really exciting," Jared Blumenfeld, director of the city's Department of the Environment, said after the vote on Tuesday. "We're thrilled. It's been a long time in the making."

Blumenfeld said it takes 430,000 gallons of oil to manufacture 100 million bags. Compostable bags can be recycled in the city's green garbage bins and will make it more convenient for residents to recycle food scraps, he said.

Recycling of paper bags also is far more active today than it was when the plastic bag was first introduced to U.S. consumers

I hope the City of Austin will follow suit. I remember in Holland that for certain stores, you'd bring your own (canvas type) bag when buying something and I don't see why people cannot buy their own. It might also make people more conscious of what and how much they buy when they have to pay attention.

For more on garbage bags, check out World Watch Institute

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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Just some pics..

Dirk turned 9 in January. He's so much into legos that it drives us crazy sometimes. lego lego lego. But he's the affectionate one, not our youngest as one might 've thought. He's going to upper el in his montessori school. He's an excellent reader, funny, and pretty smart. But he has to apply himself when he's not interested.
Rebecca visiting the Natural Gardener. She's independent, a wench, smart and observant, and funny! she'll be four in May.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

American violence schmiolence!


There is enough violence in the world to keep the overpopulation in check. Darfur, Iraq, sanctioned killings of women in Islam (when suspected of adultery or having been raped), tv shows that glorify the means to the end in often a cruel and violent manner. And so on and so on. Whatever neck of the wood you live in on God's green earth, someone or some people have found a perfect way to blot it with enough red to taint their whole community.
As an immigrant in this country, I have concluded that inspite of this sad sad tragedy at Virginia Tech, the US does not have sole propriety on 'violence', gun culture or not.
This morning, I had a long talk with my mother who lives in the Netherlands and she has often told me about the changes in Dutch society. She said that people these days have a very short fuse. It does not take much for people to get beaten up, or stabbed to death by a bunch of people when something supposedly triggers it. I have written about this before but I have felt it when I visited the Netherlands in 1996. In my little hometown I was singled out a few times because the younger kids (ahem) recognized me as a 'foreigner' and cursed at me and called me names. What the hell is that? There was an agression and attitude in the air that I did not recognize from when I grew up there. Certain overt behaviours were considered 'a-sociaal'/anti social and to a degree still is. But there is a different mood and attitude by a greater part of the population. I sense things have changed the world over and I cannot put my finger on it as to what the cause is. All I know is, that violence is perpetrated the world over. Gunning down a certain number makes for a big news event but it is still isolated. Systematic violence, for example the violence towards girls and women in other cultures but to name one example, is an ongoing thing and should receive the kind of attention that the VT tragedy is receiving right now.

The reason for one person to commit any or many murders is one thing, a whole society that condones killings, is a whole other ballgame.

ENDING VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN United Nations Populations Fund

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Monday, April 16, 2007

Out with Religion, In with Spirituality

THE GOD DELUSION what do you think?

My brother in law is staying with us for a while and not having a job, he watches tv in the morning which I never do. Today, while taking a coffee break, I saw a bit of The View where the ladies interviewed Bill Maher. Bill is strongly against all religions and believes that faith is the greatest con in history, which got me thinking.
To me, all 'religion' (speaking of all religionS) should be done with. As sophisticated as we've become due to scientific knowledge and discoveries and technological advances, religion should have been relegated into the heap of 'old fashioned way of thinking. Or 'when we used to believe the earth was flat'. (or believed in Creationism, the literal interpretation of the Bible). Out with religion, in with spirituality. Because with all the knowledge in the world, our most basic primal fears are not necessarily addressed and done away with. Our philosophical sides still need answers. I'll leave this to be a short post because I need to do more work before picking up my younger one from school..
Who can think of a list, categorizing 'religion' and 'spirituality'?

Let me go first;
Religion - conservatism, the need to control. Spirituality - liberalism (freedom of so many things), the wisdom to not needing to control

Religion - exclusivism, one true way of believing. Spirituality - inclusivism, you follow your own path, others may or may not follow alongside of you.

Do you have any?
BTW.. you can still be a believer in any particular faith and be spiritual of course, that goes without saying.

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Sunday, April 15, 2007

Who's your preferred Presidential Candidate?

I found this by way of Indie Castle. Check out this survey that tells you about your position on issues and matches you up with 'your' Presidential Candidate.
Mine was Christopher Dodd although he was the second choice. My first one said 'theoretical ideal candidate' ie. 'I guess too good to be true and not available!' See my result list HERE.

Jon Stewart visiting Christopher Dodd in the green room

Check out Christopher Dodd for President

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Friday, April 13, 2007

In about Bahraini blogger Mahmoud Al-Yousif

One of the sites I go to is Mahmoud's Den. Mahmoud is a very intelligent, outspoken and eloquent business man who has a popular blog. Mahmoud has frequently critiqued the state of governing in Bahrain, and unlike in any true democracy, it has come to bite him in the derriere;

I received a summons yesterday delivered to my home instructing me to present myself at the High Criminal Court next Tuesday (17 April 2007) charged under both the Penal Code (3/92, 364, 365) and the Press & Publications Law 47/2002 (3/4, 72, 77) in the defamation case brought against me by a sitting minister; H. E. Mansour Hassan bin Rajab, the Minister of Agricultural Affairs and Municipalities relating to my criticism of his public figure and that of his ministry for lackadaisical performance in executing their duties.

Make no mistake, this silly proceeding will be watched:

I am very grateful for the tremendous support I have received from Bahraini and international journalists and friends in this regard. They not only promise to be present at the trial in a show of solidarity, but the Bahrain Journalists’ Association specifically have appointed Ms. Fatima Al-Hawaj to take up the defence of the case on my behalf.

I have also received and continue to receive the unstinting support from the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights as well as the Bahrain Human Rights Society. I truly appreciate their advice and their support.

I am convinced that I did no wrong. I have portrayed my criticism squarely at a public figure and a government organ both of whom I think did not execute their job to the full extent of their capability. This case is nothing more than a scare tactic to silence any form of criticism, especially that of a public official. Why else is a case like this is to be heard at the highest criminal court in the land? Why else is a defamation case looked at in the same court that adjudicates murder and treason cases?

I believe in our constitution, and believe in the human right of free speech and expression. I know that with your support I can go through this.

If you wish, you can show your support by writing about this case and you are more than welcome to be present at the court next Tuesday morning to show your support.

Please show your support, and remember, always ALWAYS remain respectful in any correspondence you might do. Go to his site for the links where you can show your SUPPORT!
Mahmoud in Wikipedia

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Thursday, April 12, 2007

Racism? Sexism? Yada Yada...

The Yada Yada

I've been away for a bit due to kids being sick and another bout of strep on my part due to not taking my meds properly. Anyhoo, in the blogosphere, this is no doubt old news now but I've been thinking about this Imus situation. Yes, surprise, my two cents coming up. Let's get this out of the way; Imus was an idiot, shockjock or not. I wonder what he would have called the women were they of the caucasian persuasion. What iritated me was the hoopla of the Jesse Jackson-Al Sharpton gang. Let me take you back to a Seinfeld episode to make my point; picture this, New York City in the 1990's. Jerry needs to go to the dentist and finds out that he has converted to Judaism. All of the sudden, Mr. Dentist cracks up one Jewish joke after another since he considers he can do so as he is now 'Jewish'. Jerry is appalled. Not only does Mr. Dentist get into his territory (he is the Comedian after all), but he feels that Mr. Dentists' legitimacy as not a pure 100% Jew is 'allowed' to make fun of Jews as he's 'only' a converted Jew, so not really 'one of them'. (Mr. Dentist/Tim makes also references to 'our people' as having been persecuted whilst he does not share that history since he's converted)

Tim: All right, it is cavity time. Ah, here we go. Which reminds me, did you here the one about the rabbi and the farmer's daughter? Huh?

Jerry: Hey.

Tim: Those aren't mahtzah balls.

Jerry: Tim, do you think you should be making jokes like that?

Tim: Why not? I'm Jewish, remember?

Jerry: I know, but...

Tim: Jerry, it's our sense of humor that sustained us as a people for 3000 years.

Jerry: 5000.

Tim: 5000, even better. Okay, Chrissie. Give me a schtickle of flouride.

Now let's fastforward to today. We're not even considering Imus' comment to have been supposedly funny. But his derogatory comment about the women struck a nerve.
Well, let me tell you what I think is equally if not more offensive. The way women, especially black women are portrayed in music videos or spoken about in rap songs. It's even more offensive than a fool trying to be funny about someone else. This big protest that resulted because someone 'insulted our women' kinda thing should be going on big time when the Jackson-Sharpton gang looks within at their own men. And shocking as it is, I have to agree with Michelle Malkin on this one (although I'm not particularly a fan of hers):

Let's stipulate: I have no love for Don Imus, Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson. A pox on all their race-baiting houses.

Let's also stipulate: The Rutgers women's basketball team didn't deserve to be disrespected as "nappy-headed hos." No woman deserves that. I agree with the athletes that Imus's misogynist mockery was "deplorable, despicable and unconscionable." And as I noted on Fox News's "O'Reilly Factor" this week, I believe top public officials and journalists who have appeared on Imus's show should take responsibility for enabling Imus — and should disavow his longstanding invective.

But let's take a breath now and look around. Is the Sharpton & Jackson Circus truly committed to cleaning up cultural pollution that demeans women and perpetuates racial epithets? Have you seen the Billboard Hot Rap Tracks chart this week?

So for some 'fine' samples of misongynistic lyrics, check out the rest of her article. Or just listen to any rap song.
When Bill Cosby got crucified for criticizing the current black culture of bling, the lack of desire to pursue educational goals, the manner of behaving and speech of the black youth, their unappreciation for the sacrifices made for them, glorifying the gang culture and attitudes about women.. the Sharpton-Jackson gang as respectable ministers should have jumped on the bandwagon to make that their mission. The only time we see them coming up in the big media lights if someone on the 'outside' makes a comment they can work with for their ratings. How about working on changing this current culture and taking it out of the gutter? As Michelle Malkin calls it, the culture of Bitch, Ho and Nigga
Come on guys, make da noise! Your women already are!

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