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"Like, I mean, it's just like, well. Like you know!"

Parents Are Driven Crazy by Teenage Use of "Like"

Say, it's these kids these days, you know? Who go and say that word all the time so it winds up making the old folks go crazy. Do you see what I mean?

Read Sunday's New York Times Magazine story about the growing generation gap here.

Whatever. I'd say if parents want a real reason to worry about their kids, they should be concerned about, as one parent put it to me the other day, "Kids today wearing their pants like clowns." Hehe.

Is the U.S. Cold War with the Russians Back On?

NATO Treaty Off and U.N. Inspectors Banned from Russia

I heard this creepy story over the weekend on National Public Radio, is Armageddon back in the air? It seems like Putin and his gang are pissed off at Bush and his boys. So the Ruskies basically decided that no more United Nation Inspectors will get access to their bombs and that whatever weapons the Russians wanna make they can.

Wasn't that what the Cold War was all about?

Weekend Edition Saturday, July 14, 2007 · Tensions between Russia and the West are on the rise again. The Kremlin announced that it has suspended its participation in an arms control treaty with NATO that regulates deployment of troops in Europe. Russia says it won't allow NATO inspectors on its military sites and will no longer limit the number of its conventional weapons. Alexader Goltz, military analyst and deputy editor for the online publication EJ.RU, discusses the decision and its implications with Scott Simon.

Hear the story at this NPR link.

Bin Laden's Back

Terrorist Sonofabitch Back After Year-Long Hiatus

Bin Laden appears to be back after more than a year of being out of the picture. Read the story here.

Excerpt fom NEW PERSPECTIVES QUARTERLY: The Challenge of Positive Freedom

Or, how America's cultural exports shape American political freedom throughout the world

This is not light summer reading, but it is pretty cool; and, if you just read this chunk you get the essence.

Fukuyama | ... There has been a culture war going on within the United States for a long time over this issue. Cultural conservatives and the religious right have long criticized Hollywood for undermining the values of family and faith. In a sense, their position is not all that different from Osama bin Laden's. The valuelessness projected by American mass culture is a problem.

... Muslim extremists don't accept the basic framework of liberal tolerance within which America's culture wars are waged. But there is a relationship. What we see today on the global stage is in some sense an extension of America's own culture wars.

NPQ | After 9/11, the Bush administration launched a "public diplomacy" campaign that said, "if the Muslim world only understood America" they wouldn't hate us. But this postmodern propaganda of the mass culture has been out there a long time. Muslims do understand America. That is the problem! Perhaps Americans need to be a little more humble and self-critical. Not all the fruits of freedom are appealing.

Fukuyama | I do think that America's seamier side is well known in the world. The image of America held by many critical Muslims, radical or otherwise, is not inaccurate.

One of the delusions of American policy after 9/11 was to presume that if anti-Americanism was out there, it wasn't because of our policies or the Hollywood image but because we were misunderstood. That was a seductive impulse because it meant we wouldn't have to look inward and change ourselves or our policies.

On the other hand, I also think that America's image in the world depends on which part of the world you are talking about. In those places which are modernizing successfully, the projection of our mass culture is a net benefit because they see the freedoms shown in our films or music as something they can aspire to. That doesn't create resentment.

Where you get a big problem is where countries are failing at modernization. They can see the promised land, but there is no way of getting there. That creates resentment and anti-Americanism.

Full [link] here to story.

Bush Commutes Libby Sentence

Wow! And you thought we'd seen the lowest common denominator in action... already!

News Alert 5:54 p.m. ET Monday, July 2, 2007
Bush Commutes Libby Prison Sentence
President commutes prison sentence of former top aide to Vice President Dick Cheney, shortly before he was due to go to jail for lying and obstruction. From Washington Post.

Reunion Stadium Tours Make Happy But Poor Fans?

Has-Been Rockers Plan to Line Their Pockets this Summer

Everyone knows that music editors across the globe are living in a secret state of permanent twitter with all the news of ancient rock idols taking the stage once again. And while childhood fantasies of handsome musicians may gloss over the reality of aging crooner's hip replacement surgeries or the fact that some tickets are literally more expensive than the very car you drive, to many it just doesn't matter. Fanciful fiction beats dowdy fact every day.

Germany Bans Tom Cruise for Being Member of Dangerous Sect

Tom Cruise and Paula Wagner's Production Company's Scientology Troubles

Cruise's new movie "Valkyrie," about a failed plot to kill Hitler, is going to be a bit harder to make since the Germans decided to deny him access to historical sites inside Germany. Germans view Cruise's religious affiliation with Scientology as more like a cult or "dangerous sect."


The Daily Word 2.27.07

Today's Headlines from Everywhere

The Daily Word

Medical marijuana bill almost there.

Robert Nordhaus, builder of tram, dead at 97.

Billion or so dollars headed to Rio Rancho Intel.

Barelas neighborhood to get upgraded storm drainage.

Jaguar kills Santa Fe native at Denver Zoo.

Western governors sign climate initiative.

Vice President Cheney sneers through failed Taliban attempt on his life while in Afghanistan.

Where have all the bees gone?

Remember Mad Cow Disease, well Bush "solved" it by reducing food safety inspections. Weird all the E. coli and salmonella outbreaks in a modern country like U.S., right?

Post-Oscar party review by former Albuquerque journalist, Hank Stuever.

And you though it was embarrassing to be Bruce Willis before?

Is James Cameron a moron?

Dell to sell laptops without Windows OS.

Legal herb creating hallucinations and problems for authorities.

Doctor Yueh to Duke Leto Atreides: Remember the tooth!


The Daily Word 2.26.07

Today's Headlines from Everywhere

The Daily Word

Boxer Tapia (40!) wins majority decision Friday but hasn't decided if he'll fight again.

Tribune's N.M. News Roundup, plus World News Top Ten

Out-of-control controlled burn burns Belen Bosque.

Nice weather for a few days.

Cockfighting ban almost there.

Santa Fe resident Alan Arkin wins Oscar.

Golden Raspberry Awards handed down to cinema's lamest.

Poll: Americans still trust Congressional Democrats more than Bush to handle Iraq war.

Nation of Islam leader, Louis Farrakhan gives final speech.

Former Vice President Gore stumps for environment at Oscar Awards.

Pakistan: Cheney worried about al Qaeda.

States more progressive about renewable energy than Bush administration.

Rats deliver at NYC KFC-Taco Bell.

Iran launches rocket into space.

Ad with imagination pulled from Aussie TV.

15 Gadgets for Artists (and Writers)

From Wired Magazine Online

"Last week we offered a guide to Top Gadgets for Writers, and now it's the artists' turn. Bearing in mind the standard disclaimer—nothing here will make you any good (only many hours sat before the ultimate photoshop tutorial, nature herself, can do that)—permit me to ignore the absolute basics, taking for granted the paints, pencils, easels and other fundamental tools. The mismatch of gadgets, cool stuff and workaday utensils listed here will doubtless seem arbitrary: be sure to tell us what we missed."

Whole story here.