Canary in the Ocean

Doesn’t this just put a fire under your butt?

Norway may halt salmon fishing season
Norwegian wildlife management officials said stocks of wild salmon have dropped so low they may have to halt the salmon fishing season.

California and Oregon recently canceled 2008 salmon fishing. The emergency policy will likely spread into Canada and Alaska.

Frankly, I think the next 50 years are going to be exciting and will bring great social and ecological benefits. The errors of sysssstem and gov’t. that led us here are undeniably on the table now. The “upcoming generations” have a clear path that I think will prevail in many forms. For us, we might have to endure at least another decade of reactionary junk, some of it perhaps more mean-hearted than lately….

Robert Paterson in Prince Edward Island says,

“The choice is clear – Hope or Fear. The chance of healing or maybe a catastrophe.”

He’s exploring changes in our social fabric while asking what set of values fits into Election 2008 and beyond and whether there’s a new social movement characterized in the Web 2.0 world.

Are we moving toward a participatory world?
Are we maturing and ready to say “I must participate”?

Robert says, “This is the new media world… Here the self acts and initiates creatively, independently and with conscience. Here the leadership vision is collaborative.”

Computer-Generated Books

We’ve all heard warnings that trees fall while books sell, but few of us think that public domain data on the web is being re-packaged into books selling from $25 to $500.

Philip Parker has generated more than 200,000 books, as an advanced search on under his publishing company shows, making him, in his own words, “the most published author in the history of the planet.” And he makes money doing it.

Among the books published under his name are “The Official Patient’s Sourcebook on Acne Rosacea” ($24.95 and 168 pages long); “Stickler Syndrome: A Bibliography and Dictionary for Physicians, Patients and Genome Researchers” ($28.95 for 126 pages); and “The 2007-2012 Outlook for Tufted Washable Scatter Rugs, Bathmats and Sets That Measure 6-Feet by 9-Feet or Smaller in India” ($495 for 144 pages).

But these are not conventional books, and it is perhaps more accurate to call Parker a compiler than an author. Parker, who is also the chaired professor of management science at Insead (a business school with campuses in Fontainebleau, France, and Singapore), has developed computer algorithms that collect publicly available information on a subject — broad or obscure — and, aided by his 60 to 70 computers and six or seven programmers, he turns the results into books in a range of genres, many of them in the range of 150 pages and printed only when a customer buys one.

IHT Story: How to Write 200,000 Books


“The 2007-2012 Outlook for Tufted Washable Scatter Rugs, Bathmats and Sets That Measure 6-Feet by 9-Feet or Smaller in India”

$495 for 144 pages


And here in the USA?

From Toronto’s Globe and Mail: The curious absence of class struggle.

Statistics Canada reported recently that the earned income of the “average” Canadian — the so-called median income — was the same in 2004 as in 1982.

After we subtract inflation to keep the purchasing power of a dollar roughly constant, it turns out that median income, before taxes, did not rise at all over those 22 years. Yet during that same time the Canadian economy grew, in real per capita terms, by more than half.

But only the very well-paid — those above the 90th percentile of the income distribution — saw any significant increase in earned income; and the higher up the earnings ladder, the greater the growth. What has been going on?

Excerpt found at Bridging the Income Gap, Why Inequality is Hazardous to Your Health

Cuddled in Argument

Emphasis added:

SAN ANGELO, Texas (AP) – A court hearing to decide the fates of hundreds of children seized from a polygamist retreat ground to a halt almost as soon as it began Thursday as hundreds of lawyers demanded to study the first piece of evidence before it could be introduced.

Elitist Desperation

From social and economic policy based on bad science and superstition, the paranoids running things are now entering a period of molecular eugenics:

“The AP is reporting that the US will soon be collecting the DNA of anyone who is arrested by a federal law enforcement agency and any foreigner who is detained, whether or not charges are eventually brought. Trying to collect DNA of ‘potential criminals’ as young as five, DHS spokesman Russ Knocke stated that ‘DNA is a proven law-enforcement tool.'”

from Slashdot, Collecting DNA

Where we are going

Anne Herbert:

The possibilities. Are greater than I imagined. I mean that good things have happened that have revealed that a bunch more good things are possible. And beyond that is what is really possible and good. What is possible is in no way limited by what I can imagine.

What I can imagine is limited by what I have experienced. What is possible occupies a much bigger space than that.

Anne Herbert:

Don’t complain about the way things are; change them. One tiny increment of improvement is so much more interesting that great waves of accurate critique.

Anne Herbert:

Peace. The peace of rocks melting at the center of the Earth. The peace of trees growing up here on the edge. Routine and endless transformation. Peace.

Shot for flailing

Associated Press, April 08

AUSTIN — A 140-pound chimpanzee escaped from a research center by jumping more than 15 feet, snatched a tranquilizer dart gun from an animal worker and threatened police by flailing its arms before an officer shot and killed the animal last month, according to a new report.

Officials said the University of Texas police officer who shot Tony shouted he was going to shoot before firing at the 17-year-old chimpanzee.


Our Civilian Duty

Setting aside the urge to send the bill to Rand for encouraging war…

Nearly 20 percent of military service members who have returned from Iraq and Afghanistan — 300,000 in all — report symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder or major depression, yet only slight more than half have sought treatment, according to a new RAND Corporation study.

more at Science blog

Not among cash

Poverty is less a matter of having few goods than having lots of problems.

Poverty and wealth, by this logic, don’t just fall along a continuum the way hot and cold or short and tall do. They are instead fundamentally different experiences, each working on the human psyche in its own way. At some point between the two, people stop thinking in terms of goods and start thinking in terms of problems, and that shift has enormous consequences. Perhaps because economists, by and large, are well-off, he suggests, they’ve failed to see the shift at all.

found LivingNextDoorToAlice

Five and Implied

A reminder about the First Amendment.

Our freedom of expression consists of the rights to

1. freedom of speech,
2. freedom of a press,
3. freedom to assemble, and
4. petitioning to correct grievances, and
5. the implied rights of association and belief.

How many?
Five and implied.

They that die

“People have not been horrified by war to a sufficient extent …
War will exist until that distant day
when the conscientious objector
enjoys the same reputation and prestige
as the warrior does today.”
John Fitzgerald Kennedy

The mall without


The egocentric ideal of a future reserved
for those who have managed to attain egotistically
the extremity of ‘everyone for himself’
is false and against nature…

The outcome of the world, the gates of the future,
the entry into the super-human —
these are not thrown open to a few of the priveged
or to one chosen people to the exclusion of all others.

They will only open to an advance of all together,
in a direction in which all together can join and find completion
in a spiritual renovation of the earth….

No evolutionary future awaits man except in association with all other men.

Needs a better title?



© Brian Hayes

Transition Position

Even the Etherious can be Properly Serious

Large aged institutions seeking restitutions match gumptions, aim assumptions, challenge improvements, educate movements, calling sufficient not less than omniscient — a task recommended even if dead ended. Regardless conditions in mind or munitions, that’s preservation not creation; a consensus objective to soothe the subjective; assets sophisticated in actions distillated. Real value let me tell you, in all categories, is not in these stories.

What is the deductive that spurs the productive? Not savings and debt. Not cyclic bet. Not deficits added nor momentum padded. Not organs or cults. These stifle results. Not stiffer a fine to help undermine reticent tissue. This clouds the issue. No, I report, the facts support that angry miser is no fertilizer when what we require is incentive’s fire.

Lend some support for here I purport our greatest resource, no matter our course — impregnable forts, lucrative exports, justice and reason without moral treason, or freedom’s impunity in gentle community — our purpose can’t shift to get over this rift. If we’re interdependent, remaining resplendent, we must tune our novice and junior to rise up the mast, to see both future and past in all aggregation that fuels innovation.

Find what is requiring all the untiring to push to the end for which we depend. You must seek the vantage. Peer over the rampage, where wisdom’s enough, no matter how rough; where no explaining or drama or feigning can cloud the growth that freedom’s oath can bring to this nation. Now that’s socialization!

Isn’t it proven that what keeps us movin’ is not intellectual, not dreams ineffectual, however analytical or grandly political? No! Freedom’s invincible if based on the principal that each can find motion from ocean to ocean, reaching and catching, dreaming and matching, in faith and with fearing, with sweat and engineering, with diligent facts in solvent pacts. If anyone will share it, let’s base it on merit. This is the trend to level the bend, to smooth the tension in cash flow and pension. To recover know how, compete and show how.

Committees promoting, elevating or demoting the actuarial fences of programmed consensus; chits and credit, no matter who’s led it, no matter the bank, no matter the rank, no firm will ever earn, nor thinker ever learn the power systemic in the creative polemic, always available, never assailable, always effective in freedom’s directive.

Lets not be demented with what’s implemented. Do well for doing good. We know that we should. What’s holding us back? Worry about trouble and lack? Imbalanced obligations? Value added among nations? Inadequate attention? Paralyzing contention? Risk and recapture? Greed for the rapture? Ideas rejected by the self-elected? We can’t force a fool. Use democracy’s tool! Why be delirious? Why jostle the serious? Is it their choice, not ours? Why waste your hours?

The only safe moat is get out & vote. Leave the rhetorical fudge. Let results be the judge. Look square in the face at the problems we chase. Go back to the right in yourself day and night. You know if you’re giving good effort for living. You know life is fine when we’re each genuine.

Use responsible onus ’cause history’s shown us society’s crescendo is not innuendo. It’s living without fear and doubt. It’ not military nor voodoo nor fairy, nor a ritualized nod to a relegate God. It’s not guaranteed work or a pork barrel jerk. It’ not feeble acting or caustic reacting; not hidden maneuver or charade improver. It’ not narcissism or tricks and farcism. Let’s be fair. Those who care fulfill genuine need whether they follow or lead.

© ’87 Brian Hayes


They first said jiffy in 1785 and said a jiffy is a thief.

But I was born and raised smallishly. Cities were my want and in awhile I went. I first learned that showing up is critical and that timing is everything.

Later IBM said there are as many picoseconds in a second as there are seconds in 37 million years, so in a jiffy I took off my shoes to feel my cells twitch.

I also learned the King’s hands were a pound, and one handful an ounce, and if a King twitched the remainder in his hand is a scruple.

Scruples without shoes are the time I carry now.

Done with time, all is just.

The moment is eternity.

Rampant and Hidden

NBC’s Today Show reported a moment ago that

71% of bullies are women while 57% of men bully.

Their Microsoft packaged website is much too much a mess to find the link.

Infinity is fundamental too

Enjoying codesmithy because analysis at this blog isn’t mere trade of jingo but sincere study. There’s this, and that:

“…obstacles or no obstacles, principles of self-reliance and responsibility should guide people’s actions.”

“I finished watching Fitna, the controversial movie by Geert Wilders that attacks Islam. It portrays Islam as a violent religion, quoting passages out of the Koran followed by video of atrocities committed by Muslims or clerics declaring some sort of hateful screed against Jews, homosexuals, adulterers, or other infidels. At its heart, the film is propaganda. Are there fundamentalist strains of Islam that I find concerning? Yes. However, I find those same hateful ideas embodied in Christian fundamentalism.

“The struggle to preserve the West cannot be about the domination of one fundamentalist dogma over another. It has to be about preserving egalitarian values embodied in democratic rule, scientific thought, and prefaced by basic moral truisms of equality and liberty.”

“I do have sympathy for the people who suffer the Ayn Rand fans.

“Alas, I digress. The larger point is the information conundrum. An underlying current of the essay is that more information is now available before two people even meet. While, this may at first be more efficient, it has its own set of concerns. One concern is disqualifying information. By putting too much information out, there will more a chance that a potential date will find something that they will not like even before they technically ask. Good for the ask-er, not so great for the ask-ee. Second, people don’t actually know what they are looking for in another person. Maybe, there is a suitable suitor who has never heard of Pushkin. Third, people game the system. The most important piece of information is seldom the one expressed, but rather the ones left out.

“Social norms have not adjusted for the vast amounts of information that is now readily available with the barest modicum of digging. Much of it is just an adjustment in expectations. Although, if there is one truth it is the difficulty in applying the same standards to ourselves as we apply to other people. What do you think you look like to an outside observer?”

Frontline ran an amazing two part program called “Bush’s War.” It can be viewed online here. It isn’t a complete picture of Iraq, however it gives insight into the behind-the-scenes political battles that took place surrounding the war.

I don’t want to belabor any of the points. However, a couple things are clear. First, Rumsfeld was hopelessly deluded about the war. The disastrous post-invasion looting was due directly to his incompetence. The torture of prisoners for information is something he directly authorized.

Second, Rice failed her way upwards. … Finally, Bush is one of the worst executives in history. He is in love with his own myth….

Attention Frenzy

At The Issue blog, clarity took a moment:

Blogs are not about giving everyone an equal voice.
Some blogs are better than others. So people will naturally gravitate to a few, leaving the vast majority in the desktop trash bin. This is not an egalitarian internet and there’s no taxation and redistribution of traffic. Power over information is not democratized – it is simply transferred. The HuffingtonPost replaces the New York Times.

But what does change is a direct connection between the reader and the blogger. And why will the HuffingtonPost overtake the New York Times? Because to win over your customers you need more personable customer service (since the price is already 0) – And so in news – you need personality. Blogging democratizes within the media organization itself not the field of media. Removing the need for layers of editors and revisions, blogging allows the writer’s personality and perspective to shine through. And this will always win. Why?

Because as humans we are primed to seek out and respond to other people. Marketers know this as they pay athletes and movie stars to endorse products, reporters and PR people know this as the stories that sell best are the “human interest” ones. The most widely read articles in any newspaper are always the Op-Eds. Reality television makes a lot of money.

The current news revolution is all about putting people back into the focus of the news in every manner possible. That is the race for the bomb and that’s how you win in media. Let’s just hope it’s not MAD as well.

While Getting Understanding

How many years out of government is Robert Reich when he warns…?

“These twelve people have more power over your daily life than your congressman and Senator, maybe even your president.”

Stephen Lewis writes frankly and honestly about campaigns and rage in America:

Far more interesting and insidious than the slips-of-the-lips of members of Obama’s confessional circles is Hillary Clinton’s decades-long involvement in an oligarchical right-wing prayer breakfast group called The Fellowship.

Sound like the stuff of crank conspiracy theories?

Writer Jeff Sharlet of The Revealer, a New York University weblog covering religion and the media, has just completed a book on the subject. Will apologies and statements of distancing and denunciation of The Fellowship be forthcoming from the Clinton campaign? I doubt it.

Blame with confidence

Worst. President. Ever.
History News Network’s poll of 109 historians: 96 percent of the respondents place the Bush presidency in the bottom tier of American presidencies.

“It would be difficult to identify a President who, facing major international and domestic crises, has failed in both as clearly as President Bush,” concluded one respondent. “His domestic policies,” another noted, “have had the cumulative effect of shoring up a semi-permanent aristocracy of capital that dwarfs the aristocracy of land against which the founding fathers rebelled; of encouraging a mindless retreat from science and rationalism; and of crippling the nation’s economic base.”