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Wednesday, March 09, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


WILCO: If you own a copy of A Ghost is Born, you can now download bonus tracks from the band's site or iTunes.

ON THE PITCHFORK: Brian Wilson is extending the Smile tour through this Summer, including cities like Seattle. I highly recommend it. Prof. Ken King -- not a huge Wilsonite -- saw it and enjoyed it highly, too. ALSO: Sufjan Stevens' next disc, due in July, will be a theme album about Illinois.

THE ROXY MUSIC ARCHIVE is near-complete.

MOUNT ST. HELENS is erupting again, apparently.

DOGS are being electrocuted in Boston.

PETRA NEMCOVA is devastated after learning that the body of her boyfriend has been recovered in tsunami-devastated Thailand.

UNLICENSED CAPITALISM: A Long Island man was ticketed in Brooklyn for selling Girl Scout cookies with his 13-year-old daughter.

KYRGYZSTAN: Election protests continue, with calls for a special session of parliament to consider early presidential elections and an annulment of the results of last month's parliamentary election. There's plenty more (and who can get enough Kyrgyzstanian news?) at Registan.

IRAN: Student protesters -- deeming prior elections futile -- are demanding a referendum for the drafting of a new constitution that is compatible with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and all its associated covenants.

LEBANON: Nearly 500,000 pro-Syrian protesters waved flags and chanted anti-American slogans in central Beirut Tuesday, answering a call by the militant Shiite Muslim Hezbollah group to counter weeks of massive rallies demanding Syrian forces leave Lebanon. Interestingly, the protesters are waving the Lebanese flag, not the flag of Hezbollah. Hezbollah could easily have caused big, violent trouble for those demanding that Syria withdraw from Lebanon; the choice to promote counter-demonstrations instead suggests Hezbollah is hedging its bets.

VIDEO WIZ DAVID LA CHAPPELLE is responsible for this fantastically trippy Burger King ad starring Hootie, Brooke Burke and the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders (in QuickTime).

AN UNSTOPPABLE VOLCANIC SUPER-ERUPTION will chill the planet and threaten human civilization, though it may be thousands of years away. Yellowstone is a likely candidate for such an eruption.

PLAYGIRL EDITOR-IN-CHIEF explains why she voted Republican in 2004, Matt Drudge reports.

WALTER CRONKITE says Dan Rather should have been replaced long ago... a few days before rather steps down as anchor of the CBS Evening News.

THE GAY MAFIA: In 2002, when former Hollywood überagent Mike Ovitz blamed a "gay mafia" for his downfall, it was considered career suicide, prompting an apology. However, by 2003, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation was entertaining the notion that there might be a generation of gay power-brokers in Hollywood, though they were not the cause of Ovitz's downfall. In 2005, Time magazine decides it's a story. So is it a slow news week, or just slow reporters?

SIN CITY: A new trailer for the movie based o­n Frank Miller's critically-acclaimed graphic novels, directed by Miller and Robert Rodriguez, and starring Bruce Willis, Jessica Alba, Rosario Dawson, Michael Madsen and more is now online. Sadly, while Jessica Alba used to be into the meaningless o­ne-night stand, she now claims she's done dating around.

EDVARD MUNCH ART RECOVERED recovered by Norwegian police, who also made arrests in connection with the theft.

SCHWARTZENEGGER BALLOT INITIATIVES o­n redistricing, state employee pensions, spending caps, and teacher pay and tenure attract the opposition of California for Democracy, the state arm of the group that raised millions of dollars for Howard Dean's presidential run.

PRINCE CHARLES faced a bare-breasted anti-Monarchy protest in New Zealand. I'm sure it wrecked his day.


CULT OF THE iPod: Yahoo! announces it will compete against the iTunes music store. Sony announces it will compete against the iPod Shuffle.

ARE BLOGGERS JOURNALISTS? The San Francisco Chronicle has its take o­n the case in which Apple wants to force a blogger to reveal his source for a story about o­ne of its upcoming products and even quotes someone with a clue: "Under the First Amendment of the Constitution, I would be hard-pressed to find any distinction between bloggers and journalists," said Paul Grabowicz, director of the New Media program at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. But, he added, "There are some potentially really bad things that could come without any distinction. Principal among them is, if there is no distinction, things like shield laws that protect journalists go away, because they apply to everybody else." Others differ: "Bloggers may very well be entitled to protection as long as they are performing some editorial judgment, as I think most bloggers do," said Peter Scheer, executive director of the California First Amendment Coalition, which may file a brief o­n behalf of the bloggers if the case goes to an appellate court. "There needs to be an editorial screen or filter, an exercise of editorial judgment involved in the decision to publish information," Scheer said. "For example, a site that's effectively a bulletin board, o­n which anyone can publish or post documents at any time -- and that's all that happens in that site -- may not be entitled to special protection." Ironically, the telecom law passed by Congress in the 90s extends special protection to bulletin board functions (though not to those who post o­n them).


GREEN DAY AWAKENS SCHOOLBOY FROM A COMA: After two weeks o­n life support, American Idiot does the trick. If o­nly Morrissey had known...

SOLOMON BURKE gets by with a little help from his friends, including Van Morrison, Bob Dylan and Elvis Costello.

WHAT IS FOOD? According to the European Union, chewing gum is food; an apple o­n the tree is not. Go figure.

IS MILK GOOD FOR YOUR BONES? Not particularly, says a new study, which is attacked by the National Dairy Council as conducted by a strongly pro-vegetarian group that advocates elimination of all animal products, including milk, from the diet.

IT'S VIRUS SEASON for digital devices: Commwarrior propagates through cellphones; A family of worms propagates over instant messaging services, especially MSN.

JOURNO SHOT BY U.S. TROOPS: Giuliana Sgrena, a reporter for the Italian communist newspaper Il Manifesto, has claimed that U.S. troops fired between 300 and 400 bullets at her car. That car has been recovered and shown o­n Italian television. The Associated Press has these two photos of the car. So why are there only a handful of bullet holes? There is at least o­ne investigation into this shooting incident; it should be done, as the shooting could be improper without firing 300 or 400 shots. But I suspect it will be concluded fairly quickly.

SEN. JOHN McCAIN became a warrior for campaign finance reform after he was ensnared in the Keating Five scandal. But now questions are being raised about assistance he gave to Cablevision in 2003 and 2004, which was sandwiched around two donations of $100,000 each from Cablevision to The Reform Institute, the tax-exempt group that touts McCain's views and has showcased him at events since his 2000 presidential campaign. ''If it was a PAC [political action committee] or if it was somehow connected to any campaign of mine, I would say to you, that's a legitimate appearance of conflict of interest. But it's not," McCain responded. ''There's not a conflict of interest when you're involved in an organization that is nonpartisan, nonprofit, nonpolitical." However, with the generally McCain-friendly New York Times reporting that the Reform Institute "may look like the headquarters of a nascent McCain presidential bid in 2008," the questions may linger.

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Tuesday, March 08, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


A JOHN-AND-YOKO "BED-IN" is among the videos you can see at the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's "1960s a GoGo" page. ALSO: It appears that Yoko has sanctioned a John Lennon Museum.

MEMO TO PHIL SPECTOR: There is a reason why you have the right to remain silent.

SWEET HOME JAMAICA: Bob Marley is given a retrospective in the new Rolling Stone.

LIMP BIZKIT'S FRED DURST has filed an 80 million dollar lawsuit against web sites that posted the footage and stills from the singer's X-rated romp with a former girlfriend. Gawker, the main blog of the lead defendant Gawker Media, responds in typical Gawker fashion.

KATHLEEN EDWARDS: The alt-country singer/songwriter, fresh off a third appearance o­n Late Night with David Letterman, is interviewed by Canada's National Post. You can hear streams from her new disc Back to Me, at her web site.

ROYALTIES BY THE DASHBOARD LIGHT: The Cleveland Plain Dealer recounts a tale of royalties, lawsuits and Meatloaf.

JOHNNY DEPP AND JOHN CUSACK attended the memorial services for Hunter S. Thompson.

HAMSTER HOME ALONE prompted a police raid in Berlin.

CATS: Image-recognition software is being used to stop Flo the cat from entering her house with a dead animal in her mouth. ALSO: A Madison, Wisconsin firefighter wants a law legalizing the hunting of stray cats. And I don't think he means Brian Setzer, either.

DOGS: The web site promoting the British comedy Gone to the Dogs features an o­nline quiz, "What Kind of Dog Are You?" It turns out I am a Dogue de Bordeaux, the breed featured in Turner and Hooch.

REAL INTERACTIVITY: Acts of Volition blogs that the interactivity of the internet goes far beyond the computer. Hey, the 2003 Claude Pate reunion and the very existence of this site prove the point.

PRESIDENT BUSH'S MOVIE WATCHING prompted him to meet with Paul Rusesabagina, the real-life hero depicted in Hotel Rwanda. Mr. Rusesabagina said that Mr. Bush was well briefed about what happened at the hotel; the two also talked about the mass killings in the Darfur region of Sudan, which the United States has labeled genocide.

MONTY PYTHON AND FOREIGN POLICY: Gerard Baker wites a column for the Times of London looking at U.S. foreign policy as filtered through Monty Python's Life of Brian.

A TINY BIT OF HISTORY is amde when fishbowl DC becomes the first blog admitted to the daily White House "press gaggle."

SATURDAY NIGHT LOOKS GOOD TO ME is a band from Ann Arbor that's going to be playing Chicago and SXSW. The band's site has some downloads that are very groovy, very Fauxtown in a late Jam sort of way, but with a cute lead singer anmed Betty Marie West.

A GIRL CALLED EDDY, in contrast, is cool chanteusery in a Dusty Springfield, Burt Bacharach sort of way. A Flash-based site allows you to listen to song snippets o­n a virtual turn table -- you drag a tone arm to the track you want to hear.

ROBYN HITCHCOCK is profiled in the San Francisco Chronicle, with a focus o­n Spooked, his collaboration with Gillian Welch and David Rawlings.

JOURNO SHOT BY U.S. TROOPS: The Moderate Voice has collected a boatload of links updating and reacting to the shooting incident that killed an Italian intel officer and wounded Giuliana Sgrena, a journalist being freed from the captivity of insurgents. I noted that the reporting of this story has shown some inconsistencies. CNN reprints Sgrena's story for her newspaper, the communist Il Manifesto. In this version of the story, Sgrena writes that the driver almost lost control of the car while trying to avoid puddles shortly before the shooting -- a detail not reported previously. Sgrena's article is also pretty revealing about her opinion of the war and the opinion of residents of Fallujah about her. Corriere Della Serra, an Italian newspaper described by the Guardian's media guide as a "centre-right daily that is critical of the country's current prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, is raising a number of questions about Sgrena's story, including, "Are we really to believe Giuliana Sgrena when she says that she personally picked 'handfuls of bullets' off the seat, but that, in this premeditated rain of fire from an armored vehicle against an automobile with no armor plating, only one passenger actually died?" It also looks like what we have here is Italy's failure to communicate, based o­n reporting from the Italian newspaper La Stampa, the politics of which are not identified by the Guardian's media guide, but which has been described as centrist by the BBC. It's possible that the trajectory of this story is being affected by the fact that Italy has elections next month. All the more reason to see what an investiagtion of the shooting discloses.

CULT OF THE iPod: Alexander Payne (not the film director, afaik) blogs about flirting through iTunes. The Washington Post rounds up a few gadgets to help mximize the hidden benefits of the iPod, including Bose's SoundDock, which my friend Shahin enjoys very much. And Associated Press reporter David Bauder believes his iPod is taunting him like a Greek chorus.

STEROIDS IN BASEBALL: There are plenty of links, plus commentary at Only Baseball Matters. Imho (and I claim no expertise), the commentary is dead o­n about used car salesman Bud Selig, but probably goes a bit easy o­n Barry Bonds.

THE TABLOIDIZATION OF SCIENCE: Iain Murray looks at a disturbing trend among science journals to chase headlines at the expense of the sort of nuance o­ne expects from a scientific journal reporting medical studies. Although this article is published at National Review Online, o­nly o­ne of Murray's objections has to do with politics.

ANTI-MUSLIM BIAS IN EUROPE: The BBC reports o­n a study by the International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights that looks at "widespread" negative attitudes towards Muslims, including unbalanced media reporting which depict Muslims as "an enemy within." The main example used in the article -- the French ban o­n wearing head scarves in school -- may not be the best of examples: it appears that the hijab is a traditional, not religious head cover that dates back to ancient civilizations, and is not supported or advocated by the Quran.

THIS AIN'T NO MUDD CLUB, NO CBGB: New York's legendary rock club CBGB, which helped launch everybody from Blondie to the Ramones, faces closure if it does not resolve a dispute over unpaid rent with the homeless charity that owns the building.

KYRGYZSTAN: Regular readers of this site probably thought I was joking when I noted a growing democracy movement in the former Soviet Republic, but things are heating up there quickly after alleged violations of the election law in the first round of the parliamentary elections.

SUFFRAGETTE CITY: Women are protesting for the right to vote in Kuwait.

WONKETTE: Ana Marie Cox, the DC-base gossipblogger (who is even less family-friendly than I am) models for the Lucky magalog.

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Monday, March 07, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


BOB DYLAN AND JOHNNY CASH: The infamous Trademark of Quality (TMQ) bootlegs of the duo's 1969 Nashville sessions have surfaced at Between thought And Expression. IIRC, they're quite good.

AND THE BEAT GOES o­n: Sonny's heirs and Cher are suing Warner/Chappell Music Inc. for breach of contract o­n claims that it failed to pay royalties estimated at more than 250,000 bucks.

DRIVE-BY TRUCKERS: Patterson Hood answers the eternal question, Lynyrd Skynyrd or the Allman Brothers Band? It's like a Southern echo of Diner.

ARE YOU A YANKEE OR A REBEL? Take a language test to find out. There are more than a few midwesternisms in there, too.


CATS AND DOGS: A cat named Cuddle Bug rode for ten miles o­n the roof of its owner's car without giving up o­ne of its lives.

MORE IMPROPER TEACHER-STUDENT RELATIONS, this time with a twist: music teacher Carol Boynton is accused of being involved with an 11-year-old former student and the boy’s father at the same time.

BILL CLINTON has been making bizzare remarks about Iran lately. At a meeting near the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, a few weeks ago, he said: "Iran today is, in a sense, the o­nly country where progressive ideas enjoy a vast constituency. It is there that the ideas that I subscribe to are defended by a majority." A transcript and MP3 audio are available online. He also told Charlie Rose that Iran is the o­nly country "where the liberals, or the progressives, have won two-thirds to 70 percent of the vote in six elections." Maybe former President Clinton was too busy to notive that even the European Union criticized the 2004 elections in Iran, stating that they had not been held according to international standards after the Mullahs disqualified around 2,500 reformist candidates. But he should know that in 1997, only 4 out of 238 reform candidates were approved by the Mullahs. Some of the candidates who won those elections were marginally better than the Mullahs themselves but this is a case where it very much depends o­n what the definition of "liberal" and "progressive" is.

IRAN VOWS TO MAKE NUCLEAR FUEL if the issue is sent to the U.N. Security Council.

"FROZEN DEAD GUY" FESTIVAL in Boulder, Colorado, March 11-13. I guess it's the Rockies' answer to Burning Man.

JAPANESE CARS dominate the latest annual "Best Cars" issue of Consumer Reports magazine, which hits newsstands next week.

HUNTER S. THOMPSON: The circumstances of his suicide is attracting conspiracy theories.

MUSIC BLOGS: The Village Voice profiles Fluxblog and links to a couple of others. Claude Pate fans cannot help but enjoy a blog named One Louder. And Pitchfork (to which I often link here) should be amused by the reviews of its reviews o­n a blog named Tuning Fork.

BEN LEE (who Ken King and I enjoyed when he opened for some band we saw last year) has started his own blog. Plenty of his photos there.

PHIL SPECTOR: the Wall of Sound producer facing a murder rap may be married by the time you read this.

MARK KNOPFLER is all about "the now" after a near-fatal accident left him with a broken collarbone and six broken ribs.

CULT OF THE iPod: I have been assimilated. I am now a pod person. You probably knew that already. But now I have an iPod also.

PODCASTING: Downloadable content continues to diversify, from special commentaries for the new version of Battlestar Galactica to cyber-sermons for Christians, Buddhists and Pagans, to reformist podcasting from Iran.

DAMN YOU ALL TO HELL! A couple is nearly killed by a chimpanzee attack at an animal sanctuary.

US. TROOPS FIRE ON FREED JOURNO: An Italian journalist shot by U.S. forces in Iraq shortly after being freed from her captors disputes a U.S. account of the incident in which she was wounded and a security agent protecting her was killed. The shooting warrants investigation. However, the CNN story is a bit vague o­n some details reported elsewhere. For example, the CNN story says Giuliana Sgrena described a "rain of fire and bullets" in the incident. The Observer, in contrast, reports that Sgrena claimed the troops fired between 300 and 400 bullets at if from an armoured vehicle. The BBC has her claiming she was fired on by tanks, destroying the car -- a version that would do away with questions of producing a bullet-riddled car as evidence. Plus, in the BBC interview, Sgrena rightly admits that she cannot say whether the shooting was deliberate. The CNN story refers to Sgrena's newspaper as the "left-leaning Il Manifesto." In contrast, the Associated Press refers to the paper as communist. Moreover, the AP story quotes Sgrena's father as saying she "hates the war," so her opinion that her driver was not going too fast for the situation might be biased. Italy seems to be assuming that there are guilty soldiers to be punished; imho, having an investigation and, if warranted, a trial first would be better.

PETE DOHERTY UPDATE: The troubled singer is now painting with his own blood for the cover of a free literary magazine.

EX-KORN AXE MAN, who left the band for religious reasons, was baptized Saturday in the Jordan River. Seems serious to me.

IRAQI DEMOCRACY UPDATE: Those who thought that a strong showing by the Shi'a in the election might foster a theocracy should note that the Shiite coalition is showing some cracks. ALSO: Iraqis are beginning to publicly protest the so-called "insurgents," suggesting that there is less fear of them since the election.

IRAQI EXPLOSIVE DEVICE fails due to a cellphone glich. A cool picture at the link also.


JACKO JUSTICE: Jay Leno fell under the court's gag order when he was put o­n Jacko's witness list, so Brad Garrett will step in to tell them o­n The Tonight Show.

WASHINGTON STATE GOVERNOR'S RACE UPDATE: The recount challenge drags o­n, with Democrats poking holes in the GOP's list of allegedly illegal voters. But that list still seems kinda long, so it's not over yet.

TERROR IN THE NETHERLANDS: The Dutch government approved a new terrorism bill Friday that grants law-enforcement authorities far-reaching powers of investigation and allowing them to hold suspects for up to two weeks without charges. The proposal was spurred by the Nov. 2 killing of Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh, whose throat was slit allegedly by a young Muslim radical who associated with a suspected terrorist cell (as has been noted here before).

DEMOCRATIC DIAGNOSIS: Matthew Yglesias, blogging for The American Prospect, questions the DNC's creation of a Vice-Chair for Veteran and Military Family Outreach and looks at the latest Democracy Corps poll (which is run by Clinton alums Stanley Greenburg and James Carville). The New York Times holds a roundtable o­n liberalism with Peter Beinart, the editor of The New Republic; Michael Tomasky, the executive editor of The American Prospect; and Katrina vanden Heuvel, the editor of The Nation.

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Thursday, March 03, 2005 - 06:00 PM
Posted by: kbade



Not the Proclaimers, not even half

FRIDAY TIME-WASTER: 238 Miles follows the journey of o­ne man listening to o­ne song -- ABBA's "Dancing Queen" -- all the way from Chicago to Iowa City. In Quicktime.

FRIDAY TIME-WASTER II: It's a non-English site, but you will intuitively understand how to play the game from experience.

WILCO'S JEFF TWEEDY and Stanford Law Professor-cyberguru Larry Lessig will discuss "Who Owns Culture?" The duo will "explore the artistic, commercial and legal issues that surround the Internet-enabled freeing of culture" April 7th at the New York Public Library. Sounds very Royal Tenenbaums, doesn't it?

WEEZER shot their forthcoming video for "Beverly Hills" at the Playboy Mansion. The band's web site claims that "[t]he idea of juxtaposing real Weezer fans with such an unlikely fantasy environment came from "Beverly Hills" basically being about the sense of alienation that many people get when they don't feel like they belong." Hanging out with Playmates had nothing to do with it.

EX-PISTOL GLEN MATLOCK does not want his kids exposed to profanities o­n television.

CATS AND DOGS can now get prescription eyewear.

MOVEON is profiled in a Rolling Stone article titled "The o­nline Insurgency." "Insurgents" is not really the label I would want stuck to me at this moment in history, but maybe the MoveOn folk will see it differently.

NANOTECH: The Center for Responsible Technology argues that nanobots are not needed for manufacturing, but continued misunderstanding may hinder research into highly beneficial technologies and discussion of the real dangers. Meanwhile, scientists have attached nanoparticles to DNA and then cut these "DNA wires" into pieces, offering the promise of creating low-cost, self-assembling devices for future computers.

GEENA DAVIS FOR PRESIDENT: On television, maybe. Better looking than Martin Sheen, definitely.

THE HEIMLICH MANEUVER turns into a drug bust.

THE BEST PART OF BREAKING UP is when you're publicizing it. Denise Richards and Charlie Sheen? Done. Katie Holmes and Chris Klein? Done. J-Lo? Not done attacking Ben Affleck.

EDUCATION BLOGGING: The fourth Carnival of Education is o­nline.

SYRIA UNDER PRESSURE to leave Lebanon from Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Russia.

BUILD YOUR OWN STALKER'S SHRINE with a little help from the Google Image Montage Maker!

AS BASEBALL AND BASKETBALL OVERLAP right now, The New York Times looks at the influence of "Moneyball" o­n the NBA.

CULT OF THE iPod: accessTunes is shareware that allows people to make their iTunes library accessible over the web. Seems like a security hole to me! Drexel University will hand out free iPod Photo players to between 30 and 50 students entering its School of Education this September. Perhaps they can dress their devices to look like Chewbacca. Finally, fishbowl LA speculates that God probably has an iPod.

THE FEDERAL ELECTION COMMISSION AND BLOGS may collide in the near future. I think this story is a little overblown, though it's an example of the danger posed when the government gets to define who the "media" is for an exemption from the regulation of political speech.

DEMOCRATIC DIAGNOSIS: Matt Yglesias, blogging at The American Prospect argues that Bush's weaknesses in polls should cause Democrats to take a look in the mirror.

KUDOS TO WARNER BROS. from Slate over the excellent job the studio is doing in restoring and remastering their classics for DVD.

PORTIA de ROSSI, whose very mention drives traffic to our site, is interviewed by PAPER magazine: "I was an alt-rock kid. My roots are in the Pixies, PJ Harvey, Dinosaur Jr., Sonic Youth. The o­nly time I've been starstruck is when I met Kim Gordon last year. I could barely speak. She was kind of a hero to me growing up -- a talented, ballsy chick."

JOHNNY DEPP: Golden Fiddle has figured out the quirky actor's Oscars garb. PLUS: GF is also offering a download of John Logan's "New Used Car and a Plate of Bar-B-Que," which is charming, for those of you who haven't heard it.

LINDSAY LOHAN lashes out at her creepy dad in a forthcoming interview with W magazine. But she doesn't rule out doing a reality show with him.

CNN: Its ratings are tanking.

JACKO JUSTICE: It was o­nly a matter of time before we heard allegations of monkey business with Bubbles the Chimp.

BLOCKING JUDICIAL NOMINATIONS: It's a hot-button issue, so I'll limit my comments to a piece of practical advice for the Democrats. If you want to preserve the filibuster for President Bush's judicial nominees, do not make Sen. Robert Byrd your point man. People are bound to point out that Byrd set the Senate record for filibuster, speaking for 14 straight hours against the Civil Rights Act of 1964. That's not a good ad for filibusters. Plus, he's already attracted the criticism of the Anti-Defamation League by comparing the Republicans to Nazis o­n this issue, resulting in o­ne of those too-typical political non-apologies. There are other Democratic Senators who could better work this issue than Byrd; indeed, there are over 40 of them.

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Thursday, March 03, 2005 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: kbade


GOD SAVE THE QUEEN: Elizabeth II (a/k/a "The Deuce") will be handing out a medal to musicians. It seems likely to be given to classical musicians, as the Queen is a pretty nice girl, but doesn't have much to say about even classic rock. After meeting (ironically) Queen guitarist Brian May, the Queen asked Jimmy Page, "Are you a guitarist too?" You will not want to miss her exchange with Eric Clapton, either.

ON THE PITCHFORK: Good buzz about the forthcoming disc from Thunderbirds Are Now.

THE BEATLES' REVOLVER has been mashed-up with everything from Portishead to Glenn Miller. It won't be long (yeah) until this site suffers the fate of Beatallica.

WHAT HAPPENS IN VEGAS... Mayor Oscar Goodman endorsed gin to fourth graders, saying that if he was marooned on a desert island the one thing he would want to have with him is a bottle of gin. "I'm the George Washington of mayors. I can't tell a lie. If they didn't want the answer the kid shouldn't have asked the question," Goodman said.

JADA PINKETT SMITH: Too hetero for Harvard? Aapparently, JPS gave a speech after being honored as the Harvard Foundation for Intercultural and Race Relation’s “Artist of the Year,” at a "Cultural Rhythms" festival in which she made remarks that offended the Bisexual, Gay, Lesbian, Transgender, and Supporters Alliance, according to the Harvard Crimson. Interestingly, the Crimson story does not reveal which comments were deemed insensitive. An earlier Crimson article, however, quoted her as follows:
"Women, you can have it all—a loving man, devoted husband, loving children, a fabulous career," she said. "They say you gotta choose. Nah, nah, nah. We are a new generation of women. We got to set a new standard of rules around here. You can do whatever it is you want. All you have to do is want it."

STAR JONES REYNOLDS is worried that the public won't be able to tell the difference between her and drag queen Flotilla DeBarge.

JACKO JUSTICE: British journalist Martin Bashir could be held in contempt of court after refusing to say how many hours of videotape were recorded in the making of his controversial documentary about Michael Jackson.

BLOGGERS WRITE THE DARNEDEST THINGS about Lindsay Lohan and a drummer and some shelving. But when I look at the face of the blogger, I have my doubts.

NEWSWEEK photoshopped its Martha Stewart cover. You would think that News week would have learned from the flap after Time darkened O.J. Simpson.

CULT OF THE iPod: People have purchased and downloaded over 300 million songs from the iTunes Music Store. ALSO: a teeneager reverse-engineered the iPod by listening to its clicks.

PODCASTING: Our own Sylvia Hauser notes that KCRW provides an easy-to-read primer o­n podcasting, complete with RSS links to podcasts of its own eclectic programming.

THE SLASHDOT EFFECT, referring to traffic spikes at sites mentioned by the popular tech news site, has dropped off, even though Slashdot itself may be more popular than ever.

SIRIUS TROUBLE? Investigators examining insider-trading allegations in the blockbuster deal between Howard Stern and Sirius Radio are checking out claims that Stern's limo driver profited from the deal, according to the New York Post.

GANG OF FOUR COMING to the U.S., including Chicago, DC, Minneapolis and Seattle.

WORSE THAN "WE BUILT THIS CITY:" What could be worse than the song that topped Blender magazine's "The 50 Worst Songs Ever?" The Stranger for February 24th (you have to scroll down) provides the answer: "We Built This Starbucks." And yes, there's a MP3 download available.

WHY DO SO MANY HAVE RELIGIOUS FAITH? Some scientists think it's evolution.

"THE WHORE LIVED LIKE A GERMAN:" Der Spiegel looks at a rash of muders in Berlin that appear to be Islamic "honor killings."

NANOTUBES could provide more efficient solar power for soldiers and others.

HUNTER S. THOMPSON TRIBUTE: fishbowl NY's prediction of a special Rolling Stone issue makes the fishbowl seem like a barrel.

WAS ABE LINCOLN GAY? Paul Rudnick lays out evidence in The New Yorker. And if you know who Paul Rudnick is, you know how serious it is.

SYNAESTHESIA: A 27 year old Swiss musician "tastes" combinations of notes as distinct flavors, according to a report in the science journal Nature. Let's hope she's never heard Ashlee Simpson.

TERROR CAMP IN ARIZONA? A British computer specialist tried to set up a terrorist training camp in Arizona, where he met with Islamic radicals who claimed ties to Osama bin Laden, according to a British lawyer representing the U.S. government. Babar Ahmad is facing extradition from the U.K. to face charges in Connecticut that he ran terrorist fund-raising Web sites.

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