What's the Frequency, Kenneth?

Paul Limbert Allen takes on the mystery in this amusing conjecture published in Harper's Magazine. I love irrationality and paranoia...


At Least Christian and Islamic Fundamentalists Agree on the Problem...

"What we saw on Tuesday, as terrible as it is, could be miniscule if, in fact, God continues to lift the curtain and allow the enemies of America to give us probably what we deserve.[...]The ACLU has got to take a lot of blame for this. And I know I'll hear from them for this, but throwing God...successfully with the help of the federal court system...throwing God out of the public square, out of the schools, the abortionists have got to bear some burden for this because God will not be mocked and when we destroy 40 million little innocent babies, we make God mad...I really believe that the pagans and the abortionists and the feminists and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People for the American Way, all of them who try to secularize America...I point the thing in their face and say you helped this happen."

- Rev. Jerry Falwell, appearing on The 700 Club with Pat Robertson on September 13, 2001.

"America is the head of heresy in our modern world, and it leads an infidel democratic regime that is based upon separation of religion and state and on ruling the people by the people via legislating laws that contradict the way of Allah and permit what Allah has prohibited. This compels the other countries to act in accordance with the same laws in the same ways… and punishes any country [that rebels against these laws] by besieging it, and then by boycotting it. By so doing, [America] seeks to impose on the world a religion that is not Allah's…America, with the collaboration of the Jews, is the leader of corruption and the breakdown [of values], whether moral, ideological, political, or economic corruption. It disseminates abomination and licentiousness among the people via the cheap media and the vile curricula."

- excerpt from "Why We Fight America" by Ayman Al-Zawahiri, a high-ranking deputy and spokesman for Al-Qa'ida who has been indicted for his role in the bombings of the American embassies in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam in 1998.

(Take this quiz to see if you can correctly ascribe quotes from Falwell, Robertson & Bin Laden.)


Pot Calls Kettle Black

"And I'm deeply concerned about a leader who has ignored all -- who ignored the United Nations for all these years, has refused to conform to resolution after resolution after resolution; who has weapons of mass destruction." - George Bush, speaking to Muslim and Arab-American leaders last Tuesday at the Afghan Embassy in Washington D.C.

Official Transcript


Above our poor power to add or detract

"Fourscore and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation or any nation so conceived and so dedicated can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field as a final resting-place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. But in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead who struggled here have consecrated it far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living rather to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us--that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion--that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain, that this nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth."

- words of President Abraham Lincoln at the November 19, 1863 dedication of a Soldiers' Cemetery at Gettysburg, recited this morning by New York Governor George Pataki immediately before the reading of the names of those killed one year ago in New York City.


For the Record

Don't pretend you didn't know it was coming...

Turkmen-Afghan-Pakistani Gas Pipeline Accord


Mystery Link

Not sure what this is all about yet. It is definitely worth a look.
Know Your Rights

You might think that the Bill of Rights limits government intrusion, but with the USA Patriot Act and various administrative policies, your rights may have changed without your consent. Here's an Overview courtesy of the Associated Press. (In Newsday)


On Freedom of Speech in the USA

from Bill Mauldin. Back Home. (New York: William Sloane, 1947)

"I was losing papers at a terrific pace. During one period my loss averaged one paper a day. The syndicate stopped trying to reason with me and started butchering the drawings as they came in. In the five years I had been in the army, working part time for the 45th Division News for three years and full time for Stars and Stripes for two years, I had turned out hundreds upon hundreds of cartoons, most of which took one kind of dirty crack or another at the army and its ways. The army is by necessity a totalitarian system, which makes no pretense of allowing freedom of speech or behavior; yet in five years only three of my drawings had been stopped. Each of the three contained background sketches of equipment I had noticed in the field overseas and hadn't known was new stuff that, for security reasons, could not be described in words or pictures. I remember one of the pictures was of a new tank destroyer. In other words, my army censorship had been for stern and logical security reasons, and never once for policy. Several gents of high rank had tried to have the cartoons emasculated, but there were always other gents of equal rank who felt the stuff I was doing was justified.
In the first year after my discharge from the army and my introduction into civilian life in the land of the free and the stronghold of the independent press, I had done about two hundred drawings -- only a fraction of my army production -- and more than forty of the two hundred had been censored by the syndicate.