Monday, May 31, 2010

Sever the Ties

While our own heavily zionist neo-con influenced government is unlikely to do anything meaningful individuals can boycott Israeli goods, cultural events, educational contacts, travel and anything else which might suggest support to the despicable Israeli Moloch masquerading as a democracy. Here's a few charities to consider:

Palestinian Children's Relief

Palestinian Red Crescent
Electronic Intifada

Memorial Day 2010

Saturday, May 29, 2010

A Bigger Leak?

If this story is true Petronobyl will be a prolonged ecological disaster/crime. BP has proven to be selective with the facts to put it mildly.This is turning into a confrontation between national self interest and sovereignty versus a sociopathic corporation. Barak Obama needs to stand and speak to the country's justifiable wrath in the wake of what appears to be a Chernobyl and Bhopal situation.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Butusov feat. Deadushki - Nastasia

A somewhat noir video featuring Vacheslav Butusov fomerly of Nautilus Pompilius and Deadушки one of my favorite Russian electronic groups.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Russian Blue Bucket Protest

The Russian people are known for their long tolerance of suffering and also saying enough is enough. In this case enough of C-class Mercedes interrupting traffic and behaving like entitled assholes. The Moscow News has more:

"Angry at VIP's abusing the blue flashing lights allowing them to skip through traffic in Russia, one activist group has sent a poignant message.

Armed with only a bucket on his head, a man climbed on top of one such car, supposedly belonging to Russia’s Federal Security Guard Service, waiting at traffic lights just outside the Kremlin in Moscow.

The lights – similar to those used by the police – have sparked outcry from the public, as many have attributed them to a spate of road accidents.

The movement has garnered such momentum that a bill has been put to the floor of the State Parliament which, if passed, would leave offenders facing a hefty fine or having their license suspended for abuse of the privilege of using the lights."

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Kultur Shock - God Is Busy May I Help You

More of the gypsy punk genre. They are here to help us.

Sovietland, The Theme Park

Jack Womack, in his amazing 1990s satire of Russian life "Let's Put The Future Behind Us",has his characters envisioning an improbable theme park,"Sovietland".

There the "Only souvenirs will be terrible Soviet Union products and tourist staff will be surly and unpleasant, great specialists in non obtrusive service."

Sovietland has become a reality in....Lithuania. According to Vice Magazine 1984:Isvgyvenimo Drama has opened up 15 miles outside of Vilnius. Here's more:

"So these nuts in Lithuania have opened up a new theme park called 1984: Isvgyvenimo Drama. The basic premise is that you, dear customer, are a freshly caught Russian political dissident and now you are going to be locked up in hell and then interrogated by monstrous communists. Six Flags? Who needs it?

The fun begins about 15 miles away from the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius where an abandoned bunker in the middle of the woods has been transformed into the most fun you can have this side of the Gulag Archipelago. You’ll be questioned by a KGB agent, visit the infirmary (whether you need to or not), and learn the Soviet anthem under shrieked threats of a smack in the face. You’ll also watch the TV programs that were broadcast back in the day and eat typical Soviet food on some quality Soviet tableware. And if you don’t carry out all the orders you receive, you will immediately be kicked out with no refund. Sorry comrade, but them’s the rules."

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Petronobyl* Continues

The similarities between Chernobyl and Petronobyl grow everyday. In this case corporation trys to evade responsibility as much as the Soviet state did in the past.McClatchy spills on the spill:

"BP, the company in charge of the rig that exploded last month in the Gulf of Mexico, hasn't publicly divulged the results of tests on the extent of workers' exposure to evaporating oil or from the burning of crude over the gulf, even though researchers say that data is crucial in determining whether the conditions are safe.

Moreover, the company isn't monitoring the extent of the spill and only reluctantly released videos of the spill site that could give scientists a clue to the amount of the oil in gulf.

Under pressure from senators, BP released four videos Tuesday, but it hasn't agreed to better monitoring.

The company also hasn't publicly released air sampling for oil spill workers although Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the agency in charge of monitoring compliance with worker safety regulations, is relying on the information and has urged it to do so.

"It is not ours to publish," said Dean Wingo, OSHA's assistant regional administrator who oversees Louisiana. "We are working with (BP) and encouraging them to post the data so that it is publicly available."

Much of the worker exposure data is being collected by contractors hired by BP.

Toby Odone, a BP spokesman, said the company is sharing the data with "legitimate interested parties," which include government agencies and the private companies assisting in the cleanup. When asked whether the information can be released publicly, he responded, "Why would one do it? Any parties with a legitimate interest can have access to it."

Joseph T. Hughes Jr., the director of the worker education training program for the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, said he didn't think "anyone has seen much of that data at all."

"The hard part about it is that in a normal response, when the government is doing this, there might be more transparency on the data," Hughes said. "In this case, when you have BP making the decisions and collecting the data it's harder to have that transparency."

Unlike the response to other past national disasters such as Hurricane Katrina where the government was in charge, BP has been designated as the "responsible party" under federal law and is overseeing much of the response to the spill. The government is acting more as an adviser.

So far, the government has been slow to press BP to release its data and permit others to evaluate the extent of the crisis.

"I think that one of the lessons learned here is whether the federal government should have more of a role in the response and not leave that decision-making in the hands of the responsible parties," said Hughes, whose institute was one of the first to raise questions about air quality at the World Trade Center site in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks.

A recent report in the New England Journal of Medicine found that many Sept. 11 rescue workers still suffer from impaired lung function.

The Center for Toxicology and Environmental Health, one of BP's consultants, is collecting air quality samples over the coast and the water.

"It's fair to say that a majority of the air monitoring along the shoreline is being done by our organization," said Glenn Millner, a partner with the CTEH and a principal toxicologist.

Gina Solomon, a medical doctor and a senior scientist with the Natural Resources Defense Council, said her environmental organization has been pressing the government to release the data, after hearing reports of fishermen concerned about exposure.

"The fact that OSHA is saying that it's safe is important because they have access to data that we don't have," she said. "It's sort of awkward to have to take that on face value given the fact that there are fishermen who feel they are getting sick."

The Environmental Protection Agency is releasing shoreline data on its website, but not information about the air quality workers encounter on the water.

OSHA has access to that data and is monitoring it to determine what type of equipment the workers should be issued and other questions related to worker safety. So far, the air quality does not require workers to receive respirators, Wingo said.

Millner said that data as a matter of practice is shared only with the oil clean up worker and the company overseeing the cleanup.

BP also has exercised considerable control over how much is known about the amount of oil gushing into the gulf.

Early on, the government estimated that 210,000 gallons was being released daily. That estimate was based on satellite observations of the water's surface.

The first look at the oil coming out of the pipe on the sea floor was a video clip that BP released last week in response to demands from reporters and others. It caused a stir because some experts who analyzed it estimated that the amount of oil pouring into the gulf was many times the government's official estimate.

Sens. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., and Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., on Monday asked BP on Monday to provide all available video footage.

BP provided clips from several days of the spill on Tuesday.

The clips, however, would still result only in rough estimates because the oil flows at different rates at different times and it's mixed with gas, said BP spokesman Mark Proegler.

The company had no other equipment on the sea floor to monitor the amount of the flow, and no plans to install any.

"We've said from the beginning . . . it's difficult if not impossible to measure from the source of the flow," Proegler said on Tuesday. BP's focus is stopping the flow and keeping the oil away from shore, he said.

Jeff Short, an oil pollution expert and former National Marine Fisheries Service official who now works for the environmental group Oceana, said the estimate based on surface observations was very imprecise, and that looking at the flow rate from the pipe would be better.

"The public has the right to see what harm the environment is exposed to, and knowing the flow rate is fundamental to that," he said.

Judy McDowell, the chair of the biology department and a senior scientist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts who's studied many oil spills, said that in addition to knowing the amount of oil flowing in, scientists also need to figure out how it's dispersing and breaking down in order to know what effect it would have on living organisms in the water.

Jane Lubchenco, the administrator of NOAA, said in testimony to a Senate committee Tuesday said it was important, but difficult to get a better estimate of the amount of oil. She said that the Coast Guard planned to set up a team to get a better estimate.

Some university researchers have been frustrated by the lack of data and the refusal of federal agencies to press BP to collect detailed measurements from the broken well pipe or fully assess what might be happening underwater.

"We have been screaming from day one for data,'' said Peter Ortner, a fisheries biologist at the University of Miami.

Ortner also said that NOAA had been slow to consider sub-surface effects and didn't deploy the sophisticated gear that might help surveying for submerged oil.

Lubchenco said Monday that the agency had been discussing ideas about more sensing gear on the ocean floor but said "the priority at this point is to stop the flow.''

Meanwhile, an analysis of satellite imagery by the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, reported Tuesday that the spill has grown to more than 7,500 square miles, or about the size of New Jersey.

*HT to Mark at Norwegianity for a great new descriptor.

Read more:

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Gorillaz Version Stop Narcotics

Gorillaz do a multi-cultural slightly abbreviated version of dr. Александров's socially uplifting message.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Stalinists On The March

Грани-ТВ: Cталинисты на марше

Grani-TV presents this video of a recent KPRF (Communist Party of the Russian Federation) march replete with old and new Stalinists. What many Americans don't realize is that the KPRF is the only politically meaningful opposition to Putin's rule in the country. Western media is fond of focusing on the likes of Gary Kasparov and a handful of western oriented liberals while failing to point out that these people have about as much political traction with the average Russian as Ralph Nader and the Green Party in the U.S. This is particularly clear when looking at the the composition of the Russian State Duma:

United Russia (Putin's faction) 64.3%
KPRF 11.5%
LDPR 8.1% (Vladimir Zhirinovski's party)
Just Russia 7.7% (A mix of nationalists, social democrats, and pensioners)
Others 8.4%.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Al Capone, Leonard Cohen and Everybody Knows

While the decision to audit the Fed is a glimmer of light in an American Darkness, I am not holding my breath. A country driven by mindless consumption and fear now only has fear. Meanwhile Al explained it 80 years ago:

"The world has been capitalized on paper. Every time a fellow had a new idea, they'd increase the capital stock-give themselves so much cash and their stockholders so much paper. The rich got richer; the stockholders speculated with paper. Someone found out it paid to keep a rumor factory going.....

"Why , down in Florida, the year I lived there, a shady newspaper publisher's friend was running a bank. He had unloaded a lot of worthless securities upon unsuspecting people. One day his bank went flooey. I was just thanking the powers that be that he'd got what was coming to him when I learned another business trick that would make safe-cracking look like miniature golf.

"The crooked publisher and the banker were urging bankrupt depositors who were being paid 30 cents on the dollar to put their money in another friend's bank. Many did so: and just about 60 days later that bank collapsed like a house of cards too.

"Do you think those bankers went to jail? No sir. They're among Florida's most representative citizens.They're just as bad as the crooked politicians!I ought to know about them. I've been feeding and clothing them long enough. I never knew until I got into this racket how many crooks were dressed in expensive clothes and talking with affected accents."

From "The Wicked City".

Monday, May 10, 2010

Al Capone, Economic Analyst

"A reckless gambler at almost anything, Al Capone had shunned the market."It's a racket," he said. Those stock market guys are crooked."

"From "The Wicked City".

Saturday, May 08, 2010

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Prompt Global Strike Resurfaces

The Obama administration has resuscitated a Bush era plan in a misguided effort at arms control.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Zdob Si Zdub Cosmic Song

More Moldovan music with Mikhail Gorbachev.

Petroleum Chernobyl

The disaster in the Gulf of Mexico continues to grow to apocalyptic proportions. This is beginning to resemble the petroleum equivalent of Chernobyl. mi2g gives some of the horrific details:

"President Obama is flying out to the Gulf of Mexico coast as the emergency grows post the "Deepwater Horizon" catastrophe. The problem with the dirty "black gold" oil spill is that it is not a spill: it is an abundant flow, like an underwater oil volcano. A hot column of oil and gas is continuously jetting into freezing dark waters 5,000 feet below, where the pressure nears 2,200 pounds per square inch, making it extremely difficult to send down divers to carry out repairs manually. Experts are now calling it a continuous, 24/7 round-the-clock calamity. Unlike a leaking oil tanker, this emergency situation's source will not empty itself in hours or days. As a result, the "black gold" slick is spreading towards the four US states of Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi and Florida, that have all declared a state of emergency....

"Poseidon, the God of the Sea, is clearly upset. The slick has tripled in size in a day and now covers nearly 4,000 square miles, an area the size of a small country. That suggests the oil has started spilling from the well more quickly. 5,000 barrels or 200,000 gallons of oil are gushing into the ocean every single day since the explosion on April 20th killed 11 men. This threatens all marine life in the surrounding area, wildlife in the marshlands, and the entire fragile and interlinked environmental web. The ruptured well, located in ocean water nearly a mile deep, has churned out an estimated 2 million gallons of oil to date into the Gulf. Some experts studying satellite images suggest that the figure is four to five times higher than that already. With no immediate solution to the leak available, it is possible that the oil well could keep churning out the same amount of oil or more for a few months yet. The commandant of the US Coast Guard, Admiral Thad Allen, has said it's impossible to give an exact estimate of how much oil is leaking. He has now been officially designated national incident commander for the uncontrolled oil release accident and reports directly to the US president, and the secretaries of Homeland Security and Defense."