Archive for May, 2008

Last Contests Draw Near

May 31, 2008

The last contests of the primary election are on Sunday (Puerto Rico) and Tuesday (Montana and South Dakota). Much of the attention today, however, has been focused on the RBC meeting of the Democratic National Committee, that will decide the fates of Florida and Michigan. The ruling by this committee, expected shortly, may change the numbers needed to win the nomination.

Here are some slideshows and a video of Barack’s stump stops in South Dakota.

Barack visits Mt. Rushmore

Campaign stop at Rapid City, South Dakota

Video from Rapid City

Barack at the Prairie Edge Trading Co. in Rapid City checking out goods made by Northern Plains Indians.


Salman Rushdie’s New Novel May Quiet The Gossip

May 31, 2008

From The International Herald Tribune:

NEW YORK: The written record cannot be trusted in Salman Rushdie’s newest novel, “The Enchantress of Florence,” a story that roams from the red sandstone palace of the great Mogul emperor Akbar to the towered Palazzo in Machiavelli’s Florence. One character is erased from official history, a second is imagined into existence, a third is hopelessly mischaracterized. It is a situation with which Rushdie is all too familiar, who is well known to millions of people who have never read him as a blasphemer of Islam, an arrogant and ungrateful British subject, or a member of a literary Brat Pack.


For those who want to read his books, I have found the following books by Salman Rushdie at
Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie at esnips
Fury by Salman Rusdhie at esnips
Midnight Children by Salman Rushdie at esnips

Opinion piece by him in the Washington Post
The Right Time for An Islamic Reformation By Salman Rushdie

Opinion piece by Salman Rushdie after 9/11 — Faith and Reason
Yes, This Is About Islam By Salman Rushdie

Related External Links On Salman Rushdie
Salman Rushdie — Wikipedia
A Bookyards Favorite — Summaries of all his novels and links to interviews with Salman Rushdie
Salman Rushdie — An Overview
Salman Rushdie Biography — Books and Writers
Salman Rushdie Biography — British Council
Salman Rushdie — IMDB
Salman Rushdie Interview —
Salman Rushdie Interview — Powells Books
Salman Rushdie: An interview
Salman Rushdie interviewed by Ginny Dougary (2005)
The Irshad Manji interview with Salman Rushdie
A Timeline — Salman Rushdie
Salman Rushdie Profile — The Blanket
Notes on The Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie
The Ayatollah, the Novelist, and the West by Daniel Pipes, Commentary
The fatwa on Salman Rushdie

Video Clips
Video interview and clips of Bill Moyers conversation with Rushdie in 2006 on PBS
Salman Rushdie Interview — Bill Moyer’s Faith and Reason Series
Video interview with Stephen Colbert May 9, 2007

Republicans: "Democrats Win Landslide Victory"

May 31, 2008

Steve Hildebrand of the Obama campaign sent out this email today.

Deadline: Midnight Tonight

You’ll like this.

This morning someone forwarded me an email sent by the arm of the Republican Party that raises money for their Senate candidates.

The subject of the message was “Democrats Win Landslide Victory,” and the writer, Republican former Senator Bill Frist, admits: “I have a real fear of waking up to this headline after the elections this fall.”

He goes on to explain fears among Washington power brokers about Barack Obama‘s grassroots support and voter registration efforts.

He’s right to be worried — we’re bringing new people into the process, and Obama supporters are organizing in communities across the country like never before.

You’ve gotten their attention by being one of the 1.5 million donors who have gotten us this far. But Frist was raising money ahead of tonight’s financial reporting deadline — the same deadline we face.

This is the last opportunity to have your donation counted for May, and the last chance to have a meaningful impact on the final three primary contests.

Will you step up again and make your donation of $25 count right now?

Here’s a little bit more from Frist’s email:

From: Senator Bill Frist, M.D.
Date: Thu, May 29, 2008 at 3:59 PM
Subject: “Democrats Win Landslide Victory”

Dear Republican Supporter,

I have a real fear of waking up to this headline after the elections this fall. […]

In key states, news accounts indicate Democrats are outpacing Republicans registering voters. We also know Barack Obama‘s campaign is utilizing the Internet to raise record amounts of money to support his campaign and Democrats nationally … all in the hope that new voters and record resources will produce a Democrat landslide victory this fall.

There’s so much at risk, and conservatives I talk with from all across the country are feeling the rumblings of “what could be.” […]

[…] I ask for your immediate help in supporting Republican candidates running for U.S. Senate by making a contribution of $10, $25, $50 or even $100 to the NRSC […]

What’s amazing about this message referencing Barack Obama is that it’s not from the McCain campaign. It’s not even about the presidential race.

It’s about the forces of the status quo, who don’t want to change the way Washington works, worried about the prospect of ordinary people taking their rightful place in a political process that is too often dominated by lobbyists and special interests.

They’ve seen the writing on the wall, and they know that when Barack is the nominee, we’re going to continue building a movement for change to elect Barack Obama and bring about change from the bottom up at every level of office.

There are only a few hours left before tonight’s reporting deadline, so please give whatever you can now:

Thank you,


Steve Hildebrand
Deputy Campaign Manager
Obama for America


The ‘forgetfulness’ that safety brings

May 31, 2008

‘All this time Americans have been safe from suicide bombers, biological warfare and collapsing skyscrapers, while the rest of the world has been on red alert. And yet President Bush is regarded as the worst president in American history? Sorry, I must be missing something here…

Terrorism is now largely off the table in the minds of most Americans. But in gearing up to elect a new president, we are left to wonder how, in spite of numerous failed policies and poor judgement, President Bush’s greatest achievement was denied to him by people who ungratefully availed themselves of the protection that his administration provided.’

– Thane Rosenbaum; ‘The President Has Kept Us Safe’.

Warmed up Wackos

May 31, 2008

‘Predictions of catastrophe depend on models. Models depend on assumptions about complex planetary systems — from ocean currents to cloud formation — that no one fully understands. Which is why the models are inherently flawed and forever changing. The doomsday scenarios posit a cascade of events, each with a certain probability. The multiple improbability of their simultaneous occurrence renders all such predictions entirely speculative.

Yet on the basis of this speculation, environmental activists, attended by compliant scientists and opportunistic politicians, are advocating radical economic and social regulation. “The largest threat to freedom, democracy, the market economy and prosperity,” warns Czech President Vaclav Klaus, “is no longer socialism. It is, instead, the ambitious, arrogant, unscrupulous ideology of environmentalism.” ‘

– Charles Krauthammer; ‘Moving Toward Energy Rationing.’


May 31, 2008

The hypocrisy in blaming a marketer

May 31, 2008

I wonder why it must always be the marketer who takes the heat? Well, this case is about kids taking to smoking.

A recent Indo-US study, conducted in Delhi and Tamil Nadu which included 11,642 sixth and eighth graders, found that nearly 50% of the kids had seen and remembered a tobacco advertisement. Current use of tobacco was five times lower among students who had not watched tobacco promotions.

According to the study, published in the May issue of the ‘American Journal of Health Behaviour’, which shows a clear connection between exposure to surrogate tobacco ads and consumption, cigarette companies are now trying to tap the youngest population by falsely associating use of tobacco products with qualities such as glamour, energy and sex appeal.

Sure, some marketing communication can be deemed irresponsible and may even be to blame for a kid’s wayward ways. But what about the responsibility that rests on others? Say for example, parents whose lives have a major impact on their kids’ behaviour? What about institutions like schools and colleges where they congregate for a major part of their growing lives and the peer pressure they are subject to, in such places? What about the societies they live in and outlook they have towards teen issues?

Its easy point the finger at the marketer. In fact it almost absolves everyone else of their own responsibilities. And that, dear, is what’s termed, ‘hypocrisy’.

Pic :

Video: Barack in Great Falls, Montana

May 31, 2008

Barack Obama in Great Falls, Montana, talks about the differences with John McCain on the Iraq war.

If you live in Montana, make sure to vote on June 3! Find your polling location here.

Video: TV Ads in Puerto Rico

May 30, 2008

Here are Barack Obama’s television ads airing in Puerto Rico.

Message to Puerto Rico

ED Day – Dead Sydney: A Free Ebook

May 30, 2008

I expect more up and coming writers to do this:

Darryl Mason�s online novel ED Day, about life in Sydney after a bird flu pandemic kills millions, is now completed. Read it here free.