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From Jim Henley:
Hillary Clinton says our withdrawal from Iraq should involve leaving 50,000 troops in Iraq that will continue to conduct combat operations and will continue to need supplying along Iraqi roads and continue to need a massive helicopter and jet presence in Iraq’s skies. The only thing they won’t do, somehow, is involve themselves in Iraq's civil war, which will be quite some trick given that one side of the civil war goes out of its way to attack American troops and the Iraqi government and its constituents; this is also the side we'll continue to conduct combat operations against. The other side is the Iraqi government and its constituents; elements of that side sometimes attack us too, though from what I can tell they mostly only do this when we step all in their shit.Looks like another "hold your nose and vote" scenario come '08, barring some miracle.
You might wonder what the Iraqi government thinks of this grand strategy of the Senator's. The only reasonable interpretation of her statements as reported in the press is that the Senator could care less, thank you. We will stay in Iraq "north of Baghdad" for reasons independent of any wishes Iraq’s government might hold. We’ll "protect the Kurds," whom Iraq's government may not wish protected quite so much, and "counter any Iranian moves into Iraq" that Iraq’s government may not want countered. We will, in other words, do whatever the hell we want in Iraq. We will run the place, but without the fuss and bother of providing security for the citizens or delivering services. The Iraqi government is welcome to "get its act together" if it wishes, which should be easy to do when a foreign country is maintaining 50,000 troops who will act with impunity anywhere within its territory.
There are two words for this kind of military posture: occupation and war. We have those now. Senator Clinton says we should keep having them until the last date has dried into the last fig. She’s just going to try to make it a little quieter for us, and be a little lazier about it.
Update: Juan Cole further demolishes Clinton's justifications for continued US occupation.
This just popped up in the Rhizome Raw* RSS feed:
Public tribute for Jean Baudrillard on World of Warcraft.I shouldn't laugh at this, but now whenever I hear "World of Warcraft" I can't get the image out of my head of the South Park episode with the bloated pasty middle aged man with skin diseases who sits at his computer all day eating junk food and racking up obscene numbers of points killing everyone in Warcraft. Would Baudrillard have "gotten" that?
Ars Virtua will be holding a public tribute to honor the late social and political theorist Jean Baudrillard. Jean Baudrillard's criticisms and view on Simulation are influential to our discussions of the MMO.
This short program will be held on the WoW Kilrogg server, 4-5pm PDT, March 17, 2007 near Orgrimmar. Please send tell to Zuluu upon arrival in-world for the location.
Ars Virtua is a new media center and gallery located primarily in the synthetic world of Second Life. It is a new type of space that leverages the tension between 3-D rendered game space and terrestrial reality, between simulated and simulation. Ars Virtua is sponsored by the CADRE Laboratory for New Media.
*Update, 2011: The Rhizome link has been changed to http://rhizome.org/announce/events/47095/
From Paul Slocum's blog comes this item about an alternative for working musicians to the iTunes store. It's called SNOCAP, started by the original Napster guy. The scheme makes it possible for you to have a "store" on MySpace (or any other page you control) and sell non-DRM'd mp3s for 99 cents, of which SNOCAP keeps 39 cents.
Downside: they want access to your bank account to debit and credit funds electronically. I'm just wrapping my head around "Check 21"--the law that lets utilities and credit card companies dun your account by "electronic funds transfer" when you send them your monthly check. (Yes, I still like a paper trail.) How'd that get passed? Oh, right, never mind. You'd probably want to set up a separate account, which costs extra if the bank considers it a business account.
Update: Jim has more on the big picture and SNOCAP.
Dallas Morning News on John Michael Boling's and Javier Morales' video Blood Fantasy, showing at And/Or Gallery:
In quoting 1980s video footage, the two artists twist the temporality of "obsolescence." We recognize that the styles of clothing, hair and eyewear are out-of-date yet the crispness of video, its color and image resolution, seems perennially present. Blood Fantasy uses a similar grammar of mixed imagery, creating a greater sense of abstraction in the juxtaposition of figures and patterns: aerobics dancers, King Tut, a woman breastfeeding, and sequences of pixilated light in blue and fuchsia.D'oh, I've seen this video, and somehow the writer forgot to mention the footage of the woman hung upside down having her throat cut, from a low budget horror movie that looks a lot like the Berg beheading video, production value wise. Gouts of stage blood spurt from her neck and pour down her face as she screams. You can't miss it--it's about a minute into the DVD and lasts about 30 seconds. It probably has something to do with the title, Blood Fantasy.
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"Bonsoir Bonaire Variation" [mp3 removed]
Rescored "BB" for the "Exit Maurice" Sidstation patch (aka ChordMemry) with some filtering effects, for a slightly more rave-y feel. Kept the original electric piano plus the bare bones of the drums for this variation.
hypercube artist unknown
"Maurice Flambeed" [mp3 removed]
Another tune entirely, but using the same patch as "Bonsoir Bonaire Variation," plus an analog four-part bassline I'm really happy with.