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| blogging since Oct '01
This is Gordon Osse's blog.
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"He who does not at some time, with definite determination consent to the terribleness of life, or even exalt in it, never takes possession of the inexpressible fullness of the power of our existence."
all faces followers of
All colors, beams of
-- Akhenaton, "Hymn to the Sun"
Opt your children out of Pentagon harassment
WHO I WORK FOR: Mount Hope Wholesale
Wholesale nuts, grains, fruits and spices (and more) shipped from Cottonwood AZ
(Tell them you heard about them on Gordon's blog!)
WHAT I'VE SEEN LATELY:
(r) = re-viewing
God Told Me To (1976, Cohen)
Whispering City (1947, Otsep)
Times and Winds (2006, Erdem)
Dirty Money (Un flic) (1972, Melville)
10th District Court (2004, Depardon)
RFK Must Die: The Assassination of Bobby Kennedy (2007, O'Sullivan)
The Furies (1950, Mann)
In a Lonely Place (1950, Ray)(r)
The Adjuster (1991, Egoyan)(r)
Mad Men The Buddha of Suburbia Intelligence (2006, Haddock) Family Guy
SUGGESTED VIEWING: The Power of Nightmares: The Rise of the Politics of Fear (2004, Curtis) [available for streaming/download here]
By projecting itself as a bridge between the West and the Muslim Middle East, Moscow neatly served its own interests. It is making an ambitious bid to restore its traditional position and influence in the Middle East. It is wading into a power vacuum resulting from the loss of US influence in the region. And it is forging links with the Islamic world as a partner ready to make promises and willing to listen to Muslim opinion with respect. As Lavrov put it, "We will not let anyone put us at odds with the Islamic world."
Actually, Russia didn't have to say so explicitly. In Muslim Arab perceptions, Russian policy stands in sharp contrast with the Western (primarily US) approach that is characterized by pressure and the ever-threatening prospect of the use of force.
For $10,000 a day, you can have the ultimate surfing sojourn in Indonesia aboard the 110-foot Indies Trader IV, a sort of floating hotel with 15 cabins, a helipad and three-course meals with wine. A motorized tender takes you to the waves.
Or for a daily rate, in addition to the cost of his airfare, Brad Gerlach will give private instruction to select clients anywhere in the world. Mr. Gerlach, who was ranked No. 1 on surfing’s world professional tour during the 1986 and 1991 seasons, termed the cost “not cheap at all.”
Surfing, once the sport of Hawaiian kings, has come full circle. After becoming a counterculture activity for beach bums and bohemians, it has emerged as a status sport, like skiing and golf.
He was kind of a punk Jonathan Winters -- in the sense that he was very talented and moved from playing in a punk band in Boston into what sounds like a thriving stand-up scene, but it was hard to picture him in any context that showcased his talent (particularly after seeing him wasted in stuff like One Crazy Summer & the Police Academy movies).
Brzezinski, who opposed the March 2003 invasion and has publicly denounced the war as a colossal foreign policy blunder, began his remarks on what he called the “war of choice” in Iraq by characterizing it as “a historic, strategic and moral calamity.”
“Undertaken under false assumptions,” he continued, “it is undermining America’s global legitimacy. Its collateral civilian casualties as well as some abuses are tarnishing America’s moral credentials. Driven by Manichean principles and imperial hubris, it is intensifying regional instability.”
Brzezinski derided Bush’s talk of a “decisive ideological struggle” against radical Islam as “simplistic and demagogic,” and called it a “mythical historical narrative” employed to justify a “protracted and potentially expanding war.”
“To argue that America is already at war in the region with a wider Islamic threat, of which Iran is the epicenter, is to promote a self-fulfilling prophecy,” he said.
Most stunning and disturbing was his description of a “plausible scenario for a military collision with Iran.” It would, he suggested, involve “Iraqi failure to meet the benchmarks, followed by accusations of Iranian responsibility for the failure, then by some provocation in Iraq or a terrorist act in the US blamed on Iran, culminating in a ‘defensive’ US military action against Iran that plunges a lonely America into a spreading and deepening quagmire eventually ranging across Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan.”
The Sony award for missing the point of a new technology goes to . . .
I've had nothing but good results with amazon, though I purchase mostly from the Marketplace; but their Unbox movie download service is so laughably orwellian that it makes the email I just got from them touting Unbox as "the way Philip K Dick would like" to watch movies so richly humorous I gained 5 lbs just reading it
Compare the amazon service with netflix's answer: I now get 18 hours of free downloaded movies a month just for ALREADY SUBSCRIBING to their 3-at-a-time plan. I doubt very much I'll watch a whole movie at my PC, I just don't see the point; but I can now preview many films which don't have trailers available, and flip through clips like trying out music tracks online. The only drawback is that my 3MB/second cable modem (which translates to about 300-400k/sec in real life) is the lowest speed that makes the system watchable, and I have to use IE to do it.
Eventually I'm sure I'll be downloading instead of borrowing discs for many titles, once the speed & TV/PC integration issues are resolved to the point where the line between them disappears. But I sure won't be giving dingbats like amazon any of my money.
Scientists and economists have been offered $10,000 each by a lobby group funded by one of the world’s largest oil companies to undermine a major climate change report due to be published today.
Letters sent by the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), an ExxonMobil-funded thinktank with close links to the Bush administration, offered the payments for articles that emphasise the shortcomings of a report from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
Travel expenses and additional payments were also offered.
Prognosis: best since Eraserhead, which he considers Lynch's best up to now.
Which, despite my love for Velvet, Twin Peaks & respect for Mulholland Drive, I have to agree with.
Lynch usually concentrates on whipping up his childlike or adolescent perceptions of good and evil without worrying much about their sources, but in his more personal takes on Philadelphia in Eraserhead and on Hollywood in Mulholland Drive he confronts aspects of the complex dealings he's had with both industrial cities. In Inland Empire, after 30 years of struggling with studios, he goes further, recording some of his own visceral recoil from Hollywood in general and its meat market in particular -- which makes me wonder if his art has been permanently changed for the better. The titles Eraserhead and Inland Empire, his only metaphorical titles, point to his guarded way of coping with his own ambivalence: he either censors (erases) some of his darkest thoughts or retreats into the relative safety of his inner self. And the title Inland Empire might even suggest the insularity of America itself.
I found Hubert Cornfield's Pressure Point at the library last week, and borrowed it mostly due to the cover blurb from Le Figaro referring to it as a "masterpiece of psychological analysis", odd for a film from that period I thought; also I vaguely remembered that a film with Bobby Darin playing an American Nazi showed his acting chops. . .
Aside from the self-consciously inspirational and ham-handed prelude/afterlude (?) -- which Cornfield says in the commentary producer Stanley Kramer tacked on himself -- this IS a remarkably gripping and effective -- and eerily prescient -- unmasking of the psychology of a fascist.
I looked up Cornfield on IMDB and it seems to me he's ripe for a reappraisal as anotable noir auteur, if nothing else.
Unfortunately, his voice is so altered by what sounds like emphysema that the commentary creeped me out too much to listen to it. It's very strange, particularly as the film is so unusual it caught me off guard to begin with.
Another odd thing is that despite the extraneous nature of the Kramer bookends, Peter Falk is pretty cool to watch with Poitier.
None of Cornfield's other films are available on DVD apparently (at least in region 1, except for Night of the Following Day, the Brando vehicle which seems the least interesting of the lot), despite the rash of recent noir releases on disc, of which he directed 4 which seem worthy of revival (Lure of the Swamp, Plunder Road, Les Grandes moyens and The 3rd Voice).
Here is F X Feeney's teasingly short obit in LA Weekly.