c/o Charles Fréger < < Wilder Mann Image of The Savage
The bear is the wild man’s close counterpart—in some legends the bear is his father. A beast that walks upright, the bear also hibernates in winter. The symbolic death and rebirth of hibernation herald the arrival of spring with all its plenty. For festival participants, says Fréger, “becoming a bear is a way to express the beast and a way to control the beast.”
Traditionally the festivals are also a rite of passage for young men. Dressing in the garb of a bear or wild man is a way of “showing your power,” says Fréger. Heavy bells hang from many costumes to signal virility.
- Rachel Hartigan Shea < <National Geographic
The following clip may be for you if you were at all surprised that the end of the Bush W. administration did not bring about an end to the Bush wars, or the Bush war shenanigans, or Gitmo, or that the Obama presidency has shown less than zero appetite for pursuing and prosecuting Bush officials who lied, deceived, profiteered, and engaged in such war crimes as unprovoked war, attacks on civilians, use of banned weapons, torture, and illegal detention, or that two resounding Democratic presidential victories still find America hip-deep and drone-high in dirty undeclared wars, or that in a Washington DC where every player and every entity supposedly clings tenaciously to its every power and perogative, Congress shows not even tepid interest in asserting its sole legal right to make war, or that in these times of tough austerity talk, the defense budget remains sacrosanct, the REAL third rail of US politics.
Even if you are not surprised by any of the above, you should probably watch this fascinating period-piece from the dusty archives of access television (the proto-podcast medium). It was recorded shortly after the election of George H. W. Bush in 1988 and opens with the question, ‘how did a man so steeped in the scandals of the Reagan period and so caked in dirt and blood from his time in the CIA, manage to eke out a presidential victory?’
I worked for [Bush], I witnessed personally his supervising the CIA’s covering up of illegal activity at the end of the Angola operation, in early 1976. And he was actually fending off a hostile Congress, instead of investigating and firing the perpetrators of crimes, he was fending off the FBI and the Congress, on at least three or four major CIA criminal activities.
The show was broadcast at a time when the USSR had already begun its dramatic implosion. Within eight months, Solidarity would win power in Poland, and the whole of the East Bloc would teeter and collapse. Talk would soon turn to the ‘peace dividend’, the massive economic gains that western powers would enjoy now that the Cold War was over. Defense, intelligence and security budgets could be cut back, and Eastern European markets would open up. Google ‘peace dividend’ today, and you won’t find much. (Talk would also turn to the inevitable break-down of communist China, but that didn’t happen either.)
The program is Alternative Views which broadcast out of Austin Community Television from 1978 to 1998, often on little budget (watch the co-host leap up to man a camera to get the show rolling, then yell out his questions or comments from the far side of the lens). The guest is John Stockwell who served thirteen years in the CIA, in Congo, Vietnam, Angola, before resigning in 1976. His book, In Search of Enemies (1978) caused the agency to sue him, dropping the case only after he was bankrupted.
The images of China people know are of crowded metropolises, constant construction and factories. It’s too easy to forget that this massive country contains some vast regions of wilderness, from lush jungles to desolate sands, and they are stunningly beautiful.
I have been to Xinjiang, the western-most and largest province, where the people look like they should be in a Emir Kusturica film, not a Zhang Yimou one, and where, on an excursion to the Turpan basin, the second lowest point in the world (where a thermometer registered 50 degrees – but it was a bone-drying heat), I was awed by the expanse of nothing.
Here’s a trailer for biking film, Where the Trail Ends, (free-ride? All these sub-cultures) that is much like a skiing film: big mountains and people plummeting down slopes most people wouldn’t walk, even roped up. At first – along with just clicking on the video and not reading the title - with the faces, the Chinese-muslim hats, the Chinese and Arabic script on the sign, and the grilling of lamb skewers (oh, so so good with the Uighur flat bread and a freezing cold Wusu beer), I figured maybe south Xinjiang, around the Taklamakan desert (which I have plans to ride around, not through, one day). It’s the Gobi, so the other, northern border.
by Tony Longworth on March 22, 2013
- Starbucks CEO: We support marriage equality ,”and if you don’t like it, sell your stock.”
- Chicago plans to close dozens of schools to combat a billion dollar deficit. The closures effect up to 10% of Chicago area schools.
- An embarrassed South Korea admitted today that hacking attack on several banks and media companies systems was actually an inside job, not China .
- A 60 car pileup caused chaos, yesterday, on a Canadian Highway following a sudden snowstorm in Alberta. 100 people were injured, mostly minor, but one serious.
- The Eurozone is scrambling to contain a possible collapse of the Cypriot economy.
- Scottish independence referendum given firm date: 18 September, 2014.
- A Kuwaiti man who insulted the Emir on Twitter has had his prison sentence extended to five years
- The Northeast United States is about to be hit by a plague of locusts . Probably my fault somehow.
- A Quantum Leap forward in computing power : Lockheed Martin is about to commercially deploy a new computing system based on quantum mechanics.
- Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy under formal investigation for campaign funding fraud .
- China returns defecting soldiers back to North Korea .
- Anti-Taliban uprisings spread among Afghan Villages .
- Al-Qaeda in Northen Africa have beheaded a French hostage in Africa in retaliation for military action in Mali. Philippe Verdon, a French Geologist, has been held since his capture in November, 2011. French authorities are still seeking confirmation of Verdon’s death.
…or why the banks of Cyprus dare not open
More on the subject, including the Russian mafia angle, with Costas Lapavitsas after the break. Read the rest of this entry »
- Wikipedia estimates that the BP press office has rewritten up to 44% of it’s environmental entry.
- Obama urges Israel to consider an independent Palestinian State. Read the full transcript of the US President’s speech in Israel.
- A gay teen in Somalia was stoned to death by militants, while his village was forced to watch.
- Almost, but not quite. Voyager I (AKA V’ger) has not yet left the Solar System.
- India approves a new, tougher law to punish those found guilty of sex crimes.
- The EU is close to agreeing on a law putting a cap on banker bonuses.
- Is China behind a cyber attack that shut down the computer systems for several South Korean banks and media companies?
- US teen invents a completely safe, compact nuclear reactor.
Downton Abbey gets a Zombie infestation! Spoilers for the finale of season 3, btw.
by Tony Longworth on March 20, 2013
- Malala Yousafzai, the young girl shot in the head by the Taliban, returns to school in the UK. “I am excited that today I have achieved my dream of going back to school”
- The Chairman of the US House Intelligence Committee thinks there’s strong evidence that the Syrian government, not the rebels, used chemical weapons in the attack on Khan al-Asal. This finding may force the US into getting involved militarily.
- A hunger strike at the Guantanamo Bay detention centre is growing.
- Twin explosions hit Ankara, Turkey.
- Check out these 16 major corporations that pay no tax.
- Cyprus rejected the EU-IMF bailout offer, despite warnings that doing so might result in their two largest banks collapsing.
- US Senate Democratic leaders have removed the assault weapons ban portion from their Gun Control bill. Dianne Feinstein is expected to reintroduce it separately, at a later date, with little chance of it passing.
- Elizabeth Colbert Busch has won the Democratic nomination to fill the vacant House seat for the first congressional district of South Carolina. Her brother Stephen has been actively campaigning for her, but promises not to go easy on her once she gets elected.
- A bill banning ‘Gay Conversion Therapy’ advances through the New Jersey Senate.
- The Mars Rover ‘Curiosity’ has uncovered a brilliant white rock, indicating the possible presence of water.
- Singuarity guru Ray Kurzweil discusses his first two months on the Google payroll.
- The Supreme Court threw out a $600k copyright infringement verdict against a student. The Thai graduate student had resold Wiley textbooks on Ebay that his relatives had purchased abroad for cut-rate prices.
- The first episode of the radio version of Neil Gaiman’s ‘Neverwhere’ is available for your listening pleasure. The radio play stars James McEvoy, Benedict Cumberbatch, and Christopher Lee.
- Michele Bachmann runs away from a reporter.
by Tony Longworth on March 19, 2013
- Syrian State TV is reporting that chemical weapons were used by the Syrian rebels in a firefight in Khan al-Asal. Rebels are accusing the government of having used the weapons. 25 people are reported dead, with scores more injured. If this proves to be true, it could severely affect support for the rebels from the International community.
- A tourist in Agra, India, jumped from her hotel room balcony to escape an attacker. The UK issued a travel advisory saying that women travelling in India should be cautious, after a Swiss tourist was gang-raped while camping with her husband last week.
- The US is performing another B-52 flight over the Korean peninsula today.
- Writer musician Henry Rollins asks what can be learned from the Steubenville rape verdict.
- Today’s handsomest scientists are creating a laser that uses sound waves instead of light.
- 5 amazing student projects that might change the World.
- Ian Mckellan will officiate at Patrick Stewart’s upcoming wedding.
It burdens me emotionally.
Leaked audio recording of Bradley Manning describing his response to the July 12, 2007 Baghdad Apache airstrike video that documented the killing of two Reuters journalists.
By Laura Poitras and Jenny Perlin
Information about the release of the leaked audio of Bradley Manning’s statement: https://pressfreedomfoundation.org/bl…
Downloads, embed code, and transcript for full audio, as well as excerpts: https://pressfreedomfoundation.org/bl…
This video is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0.
You can download a copy of this video, along with all of the audio that Freedom of the Press Foundation published, from The Pirate Bay: https://thepiratebay.se/details.php?i…