o-blog an i.p. blog
Plastographique is a .pdf-based online journal of “Plastography, Plagiarism, Parasitism, and Textual
Turntablism”; #00004 is
• And here’s
some scandalous and resourcefully executed public
art for you to enjoy from the streets of London.
More than ever, we should be concerned about bias in journalism and particularly, war reporting. The internet
gives us at least the possibility to garner a number of perspectives. In that interest, here are two
links about the war in Iraq from Russians who are monitoring military communications: Venik’s Aviation
and War in Iraq
(both in English).
Newsfeed. The Commonwealth of Learning presents a Moderator’s Report and summary of
a discussion entitled
Copyright and the Web.
• Further mainstream interest in the growing piracy threat: msnbc.com
the government using purchase records to profile suspected terrorists.
• In the UK, the British Recording Industry is planning to
that don’t crack down on file sharing.
Apparently the “Honest Thief” scheme to trade music downloads for unused computer cycles
was a hoax
and intended as a publicity stunt to market a new book.
(We blogged it on 03-12.)
“Can you put your own name on something that’s in the public domain?” (Justice Sandra Day) O’Connor asked.
answer is, you can,” (Attorney) Gerber said. A current case before the Supreme Court attempts to
hash it out.
George Monbiot says that there are three possible outcomes to the current war in Iraq,
all of them bad.
They’ve “dragged us into a mess that will last for years.”
I guess this is an encouraging sign: People are not content to be spoonfed by the likes of Fox and CNN.
Evidence for this? A Guardian article,
“Demand for news pushes web traffic to record levels,”
contains the tidbit that “al-Jazeera” has replaced “sex” as the most searched-for term at Lycos.
Michael Moore says we live in “fictitious times,” and judging from this example he’s not too far off: The LA Times
has fired a photojournalist for
altering a news photo
that was subsequently published on their front page. The tweak was minor, and doesn’t really create a false impression
of events that transpired. Still it would be troubling to just let it go, and the LA Times didn’t.
Newsfeed. Rather than actually trying to address their own systemic problems, the RIAA has decided to escalate the matter.
suing college students.
• On the other hand, a reporter at news.com asks, rather wholeheartedly, the question
when it comes to the idea of giving content away free.
Linguist and cognitive scientist George Lakoff writes about the current Gulf War in a reprise of a piece he wrote
for the first Gulf War some ten years ago, about how
metaphors can kill. • In the meantime,
another noted Linguist and dissident, Noam Chomsky, is interviewed by Z magazine on his proposition that the current
Iraq is a trial run.
Googlewashing is a new concept, and another reason to generally be wary of private organizations that do their job so
well that they become taken as part of the infrastructure. This is the story of a new meme, its interaction with Google,
and how the meme’s meaning was changed in a mere
Dan Gillmor, visiting New York for the annual Computers, Freedom and Privacy conference,
explains the reasons
Why we may never regain the liberties that we’ve lost.
Writing for salon.com, Sheldon Pacotti pens the cautiously pessimistic thoughtpiece
Are we doomed yet?,
in counterpoint and amplification of the Bill Joy’s dire warning from three years ago,
Why the future doesn’t need us,
which appeared at wired.com.
The ham fist in action. The big news on the copyright front in the last several days has been the RIAA’s
four college students to the tune of $98 billion — with a ‘b’ — for running
file sharing services. Various discussions on the matter turned up, with
varying degrees of
depth of insight.
• Lessig’s blog sounds a
note of optimism,
arguing that the extremism of the RIAA’s position will finally show through.
• Whimsically, we offer this historical note.
• And finally, New Yorkers for Fair Use.
< archived items >
Letter to America
The Grand Delusion,
BBC reporter Alistair Cooke’s weekly broadcast “Letter from America” recently commented on a
Dramatic Rise in Support for War.
Here in Prague, some statistics about Czech citizen’s support for conflicts in recent years appeared
in the March 25 issue of Mlada Fronta Dnes, a Czech daily newspaper.
Question: Do you support war?
- 2003 Iraq: 26% Yes, 55% No, 19% undecided
- 2001 Afghanistan: 67% Yes, 33% No
- 1999 Kosovo: 31% Yes, 38% No, 31% undecided
- 1991 Persian Gulf: 70% Yes, 24% No
I. Primary delusion is control of thought, feeling, emotion, and expression.
a.] Source of current conflict is a disconnection from debate, discussion, world
discourse. Individuals report a sense of powerlessness.
b.] The deep degree of mistrust in diplomacy apparently shown by the Bush administration demonstrates
a lack of imagination and stunning arrogance; what is worse is that a forcible
“pre-emptive” action establishes a precedent, an unsustainable course to follow for any global
citizen, great or small. George Soros:
An allergic reaction to the Bush doctrine.
This bodes poorly for the future: Where before in history has there been a
people for whom no fact is true? Media according
to plan. “People of good will are hoping for peace.”
c.] President Bush walked away from the Kyoto environmental conference, turned
his back on the U.N., squandered world-wide support and compassion for victims
of the September 11 terrorist attacks, and seems just as capable of turning his back on
his own people. He’s apparently turned his back on God: An overwhelming
majority of American religious organizations oppose a war that the Pope also
condemns. Briefing for reporters, “we have 52 nations represented” (the fact is
the U.S. is very much alone). General Tommy Franks
briefing on Iraq
Al-jazeera in English; which recently experienced a
A Baghdad webcam.
And, Get Your War On.
II. Liberation or Destruction?
a.] Liberation or colonialist occupation? India
calls war unjust.
Horror of horrors, nascent totalitarian John Aschcroft
sings his love of country and conquest.
America builds a new empire: meet the U.S. appointed team to run Iraq.
(Although there is speculation that Tony Blair's White House visit will coincide
with a push for sharing responsibilities
with the United Nations.)
b.] Reconstruction in Afghanistan was forgotten in the most recent budget. (After this oversight was pointed out,
money was quickly added to the budget.) The
U.S. has been using illegal cluster bombs, and could potentially use MOAB missiles.
c.] As the kid-upstart United States attempts to hammer an 8,000 year old civilization into the dust, it notes, with
some surprise, the ferocity and tenacity with which a people will defend their native soil from
invaders — apparently the possibility that liberation is at hand isn’t taken seriously by the Iraqis. They
remember well the nature of U.S. “support” during their attempts at self-liberation during the last Gulf War.
III. Human cost.
Robert Fisk comments on market blast
in Baghdad. Geneva Convention? One rule for them.
IV. Monetary cost.
In 1991 costs were shared, and there was world cooperation. Today
America is acting alone and President Bush has pushed a war that America cannot
a.] 75 billion dollars is the estimated bill Americans will pay through October,
2003, if aggressions end within one month and proposed reconstruction begins.
$75 billion for 6 months of war shocks Washington.
b.] A 753 billion tax cut proposal set to go through the US Senate was
cut down to
$350 billion. Along with the approved $2.2 trillion budget this will likely mean that the US
debt will grow to trillions over the next decade. According to one source the
U.S. owes the world $4 trillion.
c.] World economic growth could shrink by as much as 2%, or minus $800 billion.
State of the Union Redux. (Forwarded by Andrew Sinning from “an old friend,”
saying, “It reminded me of some of your early plagiarism work.”)
Like you, I am very pre-occupied with the current struggle against the
evil one who has “ambitions of conquest in the Middle East.”
Surely “the ideology of power and domination has appeared
again” and we are about to witness ”the triumph of violence
in the affairs of men.” It makes any scientific work that
I do seem very trivial. I wish that I had someone like you
here to brainstorm on culture-jamming activities (the best
slogan I have thought of so far is: “W” is for War).
It seems to me that “if this threat is permitted to fully and
suddenly emerge, all actions, all words and all recriminations
would come too late. Trusting in the sanity and restraint of
[the evil one] is not a strategy, and it is not an option.”
The evil one “has gone to elaborate lengths, spent enormous
sums, taken great risks to build and keep weapons of mass
destruction. But why? The only possible explanation, the
only possible use he could have for those weapons, is to
dominate, intimidate or attack.”
“If this is not evil, then evil has no meaning.”
I am hoping for the day when “America and the world will not
be blackmailed” by threats and bought off with bribes. I hope
that this “brutal dictator, with a history of reckless aggression,
with ties to terrorism, with great potential wealth will not be
permitted to dominate a vital region and threaten the United States”,
to undermine our constitution and our civil rights, and to vitiate
“I have a message for the brave and oppressed people
of [the land of the evil one]: Your enemy is not surrounding your
country, your enemy is ruling your country. And the day he and
his regime are removed from power will be the day of your liberation.”
All quotations are from G.W. Bush’s 2003 State of the Union address.
Finally. Ebon Fisher wrote this piece about his experiences with the anti-war
protests in New York: Protesting the Monkey King with the True Patriots.