Surfing the Spectacle

That Which is Fashionable

It’s insane to go anywhere these days
without a reliable weapon.

But with so many awkward and ungainly choices,
how does one find something suitably chic?

Taser International has the answer.

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Its team of top artists and designers have created
stylish tasers for the discerning eye.

Check out this sporty pink number, ladies.
Taser International made it just for you.

Sleek, stylish and, best yet…

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…a little squeeze sends 50,000 volts of electric shock
to confound any villain.

Simply ideal for the fashion-forward crowd.

The taser design, with its svelte yet sensuous contours,
has also begun to integrate more organic motifs.

A powerful reminder of man’s unity with all living things.

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With such a high level of aesthetics, the taser is becoming an
objet d’art. What else in your collection can reduce
someone to a writhing bowl of jelly?

Could the taser designers display their work at MOMA or the Louvre?
Of course they could.

But these artists are dedicated to the transformation of everyday culture.
They toil so that we may live full lives of creative imagination.

And now they’ve dreamt up something truly new and marvelous.

Behold the Taser Music Player Holster, which holds
your favorite taser and an MP3 player.

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Brilliant!

Everyone knows it’s most unpleasant when you tase a man
and he starts screaming like a little child.

Now you can remain blissfully oblivious to his blood-curdling cries
as you groove to the musical stylings of Phil Collins.

It’s a Taser International motto: “Mixing Music with Security.”

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Want to subdue an unruly questioner at a political event?

Go ahead!

Just set the volume high for your fave tunes
to drown out any silly “Don’t Touch me Bro!”
or “Please, God, no, no!!”
and then tase, tase, tase away!

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We admit it.

Our harsh denunciation last year of tasers was wildly flawed.

We displayed evidence showing that tasers were dangerous
and frequently misused by poorly trained police and security guards.

As if that really mattered.

We ignored the beauty of it all and in so doing, failed in our role as artists:

Serving those who depend on us.

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Exclusive Ads from McCain Campaign

A recently political ad has utterly transformed how we all see Barack Obama.

With millions gushing over Obama, the McCain commercial compares his popularity to the shallow popularity cult of Britney Spears and Paris Hilton.

And it’s like a lightning bolt!

How true! How absolutely correct! The hype and mystification finally exposed!
Yes, Obama is exactly like these two young white female celebrities
with their sex tapes and their rich daddies.

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When a source on McCain’s staff revealed that more commercials of this kind would be coming, SurfingtheSpectacle begged for a look at these ads. We had to know more about the real man lurking behind the Obama mask.

And though we could not obtain the actual videos, we did manage to procure the rough scripts of the upcoming campaign commercials. These scripts are are so stirring, so utterly truthful, we feel compelled to share them with our fellow citizens:

JM08 COM#43: MR. ORATOR

NARRATOR: “He’s the most riveting orator in the world. But does good
‘public speaking’ mean you’re ready to lead? Adolph Hitler thought so,
and millions were murdered in a monstrous holocaust. Can we really afford
to take a chance on history repeating itself?”

VIDEO: SHOTS OF 200,000 GERMANS CHEERING OBAMA’S SPEECH IN BERLIN INTERCUT WITH IMAGES OF ADOLPH HITLER HOLDING SWAY BEFORE ROUSING GERMAN CROWDS, THEN CAMERA ZOOMS IN AND FREEZES ON OBAMA.

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JM08 COM#44: MR. INTELLECTUAL

NARRATOR: “He’s an elite Ivy League educated intellectual. But are his ‘big ideas’ right for America? Barack Obama says no to offshore drilling. No to U.S. victory abroad. And YES to taxes. Sound familiar? Sounds like the ‘big ideas’ of the brutal communist dictator Vladimir Lenin. That’s the real Obama.”

VIDEO: DRAMATIC SHOTS OF OBAMA SPEAKING BEFORE
VARIOUS CROWDS JUXTAPOSED WITH IMAGES OF MISERABLE,

REPRESSED SOVIET CITIZENS COWERING.

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JM08 COM #45: MR. COOL

NARRATOR: “He’s charming. He’s charismatic. He’s ‘cool.’ Or so he seems. Charles Manson seemed charismatic too—an ‘American Original,’ just like Barack Obama. But John McCain knows there’s nothing ‘cool’ about ritualistic cult murder. John McCain knows we don’t need Charlie Manson in the Oval Office.”

VIDEO: IMAGES OF OBAMA SHAKING HANDS, SMILING, JOKING,
JUXTAPOSED WITH IMAGES OF CHARLES MANSON AND NEWS
FOOTAGE OF THE SHARON TATE MURDERS BEFORE MOVING TO
A TIGHT CLOSE UP OF OBAMA’S STRANGE EYES.

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JM COM #46: MR. ATHLETE

NARRATOR: “Avoiding military service, Barack Obama never spent time on a battlefield or a POW camp. He preferred instead the safety of a warm gym to develope his lithe, athletic body, much as a gay male bodybuilder might. Does America really want a gay bodybuilder in the White House? John McCain voted to put homosexual rapists and murderers behind bars . . . for life.”

VIDEO: SHOTS OF OBAMA PLAYING BASKETBALL WITH THE
TROOPS IN IRAQ DISSOLVE TO SHOTS OF MALE BODYBUILDERS
DISSOLVE TO GAY PARADE SHOTS, FOLLOWED BY A SERIES OF
MUG SHOTS BEFORE SETTLING IN ON OBAMA.

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JM08 COM #47: MR. INSPIRATION

NARRATOR: “In our great land, anyone can succeed, regardless of race, creed or color. But does the virulent anti-semitic hate-speech of a Louis Farrakhan really have a place in American politics? John McCain says no. No to race war. No to violence and mob rule. No to Barak Obama’s vision for America.”

VIDEO: IMAGE BEGINS WITH SMILING BLACK CHILD, THEN MOVES TO BLACK PANTHERS, LOUIS FARRAKHAN, WILLIE HORTON, URBAN RIOT FOOTAGE AND A LONG ZOOM IN TO AN ANGRY OBAMA.

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JM08 COM #48: MR. UNITY

NARRATOR: “Barack Obama calls for global unity, tolerance, and international law — the very same things that the AntiChrist advocates. Don’t believe it? When the AntiChrist rides in from Babylon on a horse of death singing a song of unity and the world falls to bloody apocalypse, you’ll believe it all right. Read your Bible, America. That’s the real Obama.”

VIDEO: INTERCUT BETWEEN IMAGES OF A CARING OBAMA, A RIDER ATOP A THUNDERING HORSE AND SCENES OF BLOODY GLOBAL APOCALYPSE.

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JM08 COM #49: MR. CHANGE AGENT

NARRATOR: Barack Obama stands for ‘hope’ and ‘change.’ But what does
he mean exactly? A Koran in every classroom? Islamofascist control of the
federal government? A terrorist on every street corner? You won’t find
anything murky and sinister about John McCain — he believes in the
purity and goodness of our great nation.

VIDEO: IMAGES OF 9/11 DEVASTATION INTERCUT
WITH OBAMA IN ISLAMIC GARB.

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Our Twilight Zone

There are juxtapositions so startling and surreal that we must gaze upon them again and again to grasp what they tell us about our world.

The revelations are rarely pleasant.

Witness the televised chat between a Saudi Executioner and his primetime hosts.

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Abdallah Bin Said al-Bishi may be Mecca’s mightiest court-appointed exterminator. He is a manly man. His sword is swift and deadly.

Which makes him a superb guest for anyone’s television show.

But Al-Bishi is not easy to track down. There are limbs to be severed and sinners to be slain. He’s extremely busy with his work.

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Television loves busy men.

One can argue that America’s two greatest gifts to the modern world are weapons of mass destruction and the TV talk show format.

The former gets all the attention, but the latter enjoys
equally widespread and lethal employment.

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What is the marvel of the modern television interview?

Nothing ever seems incongruous. The exquisite banality of the format
cloaks any sense of creeping insanity.

The interview with Al-Bishi then is hardly different than ones
you’ve seen with Paris Hilton.

Or Donald Rumsfeld.

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This show, which first aired on Lebanon’s LBC network in 2006, is an
excellent reminder of how television journalists in the Middle East
possess similar insight and integrity to those in the West.

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Their inquiries are deeply philosophical.

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As for Al-Bishi, he seems like a nice guy. Family man. Fun at picnics.

But it’s probably best to avoid him when he’s working.

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Even though Al-Bishi might be considered dangerous, don’t think these interviewers are afraid of asking tough questions.

Because they’re not. They want to get the story. The real story.

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For all of the glamour and fame of Al-Bishi’s position, he is a modest man.

At the end of the day, he says, his work is just like anyone else’s.

Only his job involves ritualistic dismemberment with its expulsion of internal organs, tissues and brain matter, and yours probably doesn’t.

But that’s not part of the show. This show anyway.

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He’s just a regular guy with a regular job. On television. Talking.

Television: Modern culture’s greatest instrument for manufacturing the Normal.

[Watch the interview or read the transcript here. Originally caught on Metafilter.
For accounts and explicit images of what men like Al-Bishi actually do
on their jobs, you have only to search the Web. It’s out there.]

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Gift of the Heart

For Valentine’s Day…

You want to give a gift that will be warmly remembered?

Give the gift of a Kalashnikov AK-47.

You want to say “I love you?”

Say I love you with a Kalashnikov AK-47.

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There are lots of things people want. Some of them they actually need.

But few they’ll treasure.

Listen to us.

They will treasure a sweet little Kalashnikov AK-47.

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What brings people together?

A Kalashnikov AK-47.

Cops love them. Gangs love them. Terrorists and armies love them.

So will your sweetheart.

And guess what? Kids love them too.

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As the poet said….

“Happiness is a warm gun.”

And there is no gun quite as warm as the AK-47.

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Many years ago, in a moment of sacred inspiration,
Ivan Kalashnikov dreamt up this wondrous weapon.

And the world has never been the same.

100 million AK-47s around the globe.

And counting!

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Can you afford such a splendid instrument?

Of course you can.
It’s cheap in every land.

Do you have $100? Then buy one,
buy two. Spread the joy!

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Don’t worry if your beloved
isn’t able to shoot straight.

700 rounds a minute, comrade.
Trust us. Trust the AK-47.

She’ll hit something.

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But what’s that you say?

You don’t have a true love? No one will be your Valentine?

Then give yourself a little kiss.
Give yourself a little love.

Give yourself a little Kalashnikov AK-47

for Valentine’s Day.

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Our Strange Dreams

Perhaps our deepest desires float blindly along
in the dark, adrift from our conscious mind.

Perhaps from time to time these desires merge
with the secret dreams of other dreamers…

And rise to the surface like lava, taking ashen shape
in visions most sublime.

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These images may appear as the product of this artist or that.

But we might rightly consider such visions as nothing less
than the aching manifestations of our collective unconscious.

Our own hopes, wishes, fantasies, unknown even to ourselves,
now thrust into the open with the brazen swagger of truth.

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It is a mark of this world that the expectation of justice
shocks the imagination.

Justice?!

Justice becomes a clever joke among clever people,
but no one does much laughing.

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Still the longing lingers.

And the hidden hope, once exposed, seems awfully…

Sweeeeeeet.

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Book ’em, Danno.

And get them out of my sight.

[All these mug shots are from Nora Ligorano and Marshall Reese’s “Line Up,” currently displayed at the New York Public Library as part of its “Multiple Interpretations” exhibition. Check out these links for more information. Lastly,
a link for youthful readers mystified by the wondrous phrase, “Book ’em Danno.”]

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The Old Dog Begins to Bite

The artist’s subjects are enormous.

He is fond of fleshy souls and depicts them in all their immensity.

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Born in Columbia in 1932, Fernando Botero
took the figures of his boyhood and his imagination,
and inflated them, endowing his dancers, husbands,
bullfighters and lovers with comic and mythic proportion.

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The images are widely beloved. Botero’s art hangs in museums
around the world. He is incredibly famous. He is incredible wealthy.
He has made thousands of paintings, each one worth
more than most make in a lifetime.

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“I like to paint pleasant things…All of my life, by conviction,
I did subjects that were rather pleasant.”

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As a young artist, Botero left Columbia for New York.
In the 13 years he lived there, he painted only his private Columbia.
He moved to Paris and resided there for more than 30 years.
But Paris was never his subject. Only the quaint, charming
figures from his mythic Columbia made the canvas.

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All this time, the real Columbia was mired in disaster.
There were massacres, kidnappings and torture.
Guerillas, paramilitary groups, government forces and
vicious drug cartels vied for control. Life was cheap.
200,000 Columbians were murdered while Botero painted.

But decade after decade, the popular artist portrayed only a sweet,
whimsical world of perpetual innocence.

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Then something happened.

We do not know what.

All we know is that as he approached his 70th year,
the artist began painting things most unpleasant.

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He had heard and read the news reports.
He had imagined the countless horrors of his homeland.
Now he took paint to canvas.

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The fat images were no longer funny.

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The world famous artist did not sell these paintings.
He gave them to the people of Columbia,
donating the work to the National Museum of Columbia.

Botero seemed to be changing.

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When he read of the crimes at Abu Ghraib,
he said he felt he must do something.
So he began to draw. He began to paint.

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His prisoners carry the voluminous corpulence that is his trademark,
but now they wear their flesh as a kind of stark testament
to their tortures. The images are emphatic, insistent.

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“I wanted to recreate the atmosphere in the prison with scenes
that were not scenes in the photos, to make some idea of the feeling,
so that I could communicate some idea of the horrors that were going on…
In painting there is this concentration of emotion through time,
leaving out everything that doesn’t concern the subject,
and this makes the images in painting have special meaning….

Art has the capacity to make us remember a situation for a long time.”

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The artist who found fame and fortune creating
amusing figures from a quaint land of the past
now turns to our world and our time,
and says terrible and unjust events must not go forgotten.

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“It has to be remembered….I could not stay silent. The power of art
is to make you remember something. I hope that will happen with my work.”

[All quotes taken from an interview with Botero here. For a slide show
on his Abu Ghraib work, go here. A good story on his first forays into
Columbian political art can be found here].

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Stopping as a Way of Moving Forward


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Patrick Power has left.

Chronicler. Visionary. Web Guru. Wild Man.

He jumped into Niagara Falls.

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And was gone.

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Many no longer notice the sky and stars,
the wind and light and shadow,
the creatures and the creaking poles,
the electric flare and the mechanical doodad.

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Patrick noticed. He was always looking, seeing.

He never saw the same thing twice.

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He took thousands of photographs and videos.

He saw the things that others missed.

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And considered their energy, their presence.

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In the year before he left, he wrote of these things:

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“The false binary of creation destruction.

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Matter never created or destroyed.

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It comes from a higher place. It changes as it falls.

This is constant.”

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He wrote this too:

“Foolishness as the ancestor of wisdom.

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Stopping as a way of moving forward.

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Circles moving within circles moving within circles.

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The evolutionary narrative.

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The endless mystery as it unravels across time and space.

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These things never happened
but always were.”

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As if Human

One of the world’s most acclaimed artists had a big idea.

His name is Damien Hirst. And he thought, I’ll take some of my millions, buy a huge supply of diamonds, and hire experts to make a diamond encrusted skull.

And then I will sell it on the market for $100 million dollars.

And that’s what happened.

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The work made an estimated $80 million dollars in profit and provided
a powerful comment on, um, something or other.

By the way, we don’t know who the skull originally belonged to.
Mr. Hirst apparently has found little interest in such a question.

Which is not unusual. There are millions of skulls still dressed in flesh
that no one cares about.

Some of these are called the homeless.

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There is a secret about the homeless that few may know.

They are actual human beings. They have names. They have stories.

Mariam Eqbal knows this. She is a young artist in Richmond, Virginia, who began talking to homeless men and women. She wanted to find out who they were. Where did they come from? What are their memories? Their dreams?

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She attended to their simple human dignity.

She listened. She took photographs. And she made illustrations.

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A series of large portraits emerged. Then Ms. Eqbal had another idea.
Perhaps these images could move around the community.

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She walked into the public transit authority and showed them the work.
By the time she left, she had approval to put them on city buses.

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But the materials cost money.
She went door to door to local businesses looking for donations.

She got the money.

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And the buses of the city carried the images from street to street.
Ms. Eqbal’s project did not yield a profit of $80 million dollars.

Indeed, we do not know the result of her transmissions.

Such expressions sometimes take root in the odd corners of our skulls
and cannot easily be measured.

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The Compassionate Soul

Americans are often criticized for being oblivious to the sufferings of others. Here at SurfingtheSpectacle, we say, “No. No, you’re very wrong.”

We care. We care very much.

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But what can we do about the pain and injustice in the world?

It’s all so confusing and irrational.

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It’s not our fault. And besides, could we really make an impact?

For instance, millions of children die each year from malnutrition.
But could we ever help any one of them? Not really.

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They would just live to die of something else. We wouldn’t really be solving the problem.

But there are problems that we can fix!

Look how sad and forlorn this woman looks. Can she ever be helped?

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She sure can! And how!!

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You see, it’s all thanks to this man. Jason Grunstra. He had a sacred calling.

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Following the path of Mother Teresa, Saint Grunstra started a charitable organization called myfreeimplants.com that rescues women in deep distress.

The group is dedicated to the idea of giving every needy woman bigger breasts.

Using the glorious power of the Web, they transform the lives of suffering souls
(see left) to paragons of fulfillment (see right).

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It’s powerful! And any man can help! He just goes to the website
and donates money for this crucial procedure.

The man is given the title “Benefactor.”
And the women send him pictures and chat with him and everything!

But their pain is all too real.
And their tearful testimonies can break the most hardened heart.

“I really want a boob job because I want to look good in a bikini and I just have always wanted and dreamed of finally having big boobies.”

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For the love of God, who will help this poor thing?!!

O, the world sorely needs our compassionate souls.

[Fox’s Geraldo Rivera tackled this story in a powerful segment called “Hooter Heaven.” Alas, it no longer seems to be available online.
The photographs on top are from unknown sources, save for the
photograph of fleeing Palestinians taken by James Lukoski.]

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The Daily Drive

The daily drive to work involves countless checkpoints and ID checks. One day, something new. The uniformed man stares hard at her, insisting he recognizes her as a doctor from a hospital. She panics. And must hide the panic. In a city where doctors are targeted and killed, this mistaken impression can mean the end of her days.

The guard’s face is serious, angry. He speaks intensely to a superior while she waits, her life now in the hands of strangers. Abruptly she is dismissed. She drives off, afraid to look back. She knows she can never take this route again. She continues on to work. Still shaking.

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Such are the incidents and impressions we find on a remarkable blog called Inside Iraq. For most Westerners, war in Iraq brings tales of bombers and mayhem, soldiers and strife, upheaval and fanaticism. The human face is rarely revealed.

Americans know little about Iraqis that hasn’t been conjured from old films, political propaganda and televised news scraps. The Iraqi people exist merely as abstractions, words, numbers, so the idea of ten or forty or one hundred thousand Iraqi civilians dying from the conflict there means, for all too many, nothing.

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But of course, no person is an abstraction. Each holds her own share of desire, despair, pleasure. Each has his own story. Through Inside Iraq, the reader is given a brief glimpse of Iraqi life, as the blog offers the personal thoughts and tales of Iraqi journalists working for the American newspaper chain McClatchy Newspapers.

Their dispatches convey the daily tedium and sporadic violence of life in a broken nation. The tone is informal, direct. The voice feels familiar – it is impossible to read their struggles and not imagine your own life in their shoes.

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Many of their problems are mundane. Monotonous. Fixing a third-rate generator in scorching summer heat. Waiting in endless lines for gas. Securing clean water for one’s family. The tiresome pace of life in a new Iraq amid empty promises and widespread confusion.

Homes are missed. Daughters are missed. Bookstores and restaurants are missed. The old life, now forever gone, is missed.

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One writes of seeing a fearful old man in the market and recognizing him as an old schoolteacher. “He looked so afraid.” Another tells of children, once playing together and now apart, the growing recognition that some are Shiite, some Sunni. “A wave of deep sorrow engulfed me.” A third recounts a ride with a taxi driver who talks of the crippling of his daughter, the murder of his brothers, a harrowing escape from a gun pointed at his temple. “I was unable to say anything.”

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The unbelievable becomes normalized. Riders on a bus discuss mortars, IEDs and car bombs the way they might speak of the weather. A mother decides on nylon sheets instead of glass for her windows – less danger for her children in an explosion. Survival tips are passed along like recipes. Keep the car in working order. Keep eyes averted in the presence of occupiers. Become pliant or, better yet, invisible.

Make absolutely no errors.

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These Iraqis may endure their chronic proximity to violence and occupation, but for some it comes at a price – inner distance, retreat.

“How can one continue to be human, filled with human feelings and not withdraw into that inner place were no hurt can follow?? Driving faster than usual, feeling quite unreal, I feel like testing my humanity against some blast wall – just to see if I’m still human.”

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In such a world, wit, irony and humor still persist. One remarks that it’s a shame all the cardiologists have been driven from Baghdad, with everyone on edge, they would make a bundle. Another observes that living amid the harrowing chase scenes and gunfire of everyday life is like being a character is some great epic film. The writer would prefer a role in a romantic comedy instead.

There is sanity in this. Life of constant weeping is not life.

Less than five minutes after the explosion, everything was normal and we started talking and laughing again and why not, its just an IED in Baghdad, So what? Its not the first and we are all sure its not the last. Its just one more day in Baghdad.

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[The Inside Iraq blog can be found here and particular entries referenced are as follows: “Go”1, “Not Enough”2, “One More Day”3, “Watch Out!”4, “To Be a Part”5, “Look of Fear”6, “One Question”7, “Play”8. “To Be Part of a Movie”9, “Hot Day”10, “Be Calm, Don’t Lose It”11. All the images are from the early paintings of the great Gerhard Richter.]

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Go Fuck Yourself Mr. Cheney

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There are few bright episodes in the national endurance of an American vice president who has advocated torture, diminished civil rights, silenced opposing views, and conspired with corporate heads against the interests of the American people.

But there have been moments of modest relief.

In September of 2005, in the wake of Hurricane Katrina’s devastation of the Gulf Coast, and the administration’s belated and inept response to the disaster, a brilliant moment in TV history occurred.

Vice President Dick Cheney was on a brief visit to Mississippi, hoping to create the impression that he and the administration actually care for the plight of suffering Americans. As Cheney is interviewed by reporters, we hear the voice of a passerby with a message for the vice president – a message that, much like a Greek Chorus, seemed to reflect the deep tensions and ire of the democratic citizenry.

Since our leaders are utterly shielded, sometimes by the media itself, from the slightest voice of dissent – regardless of how corrupt and heinous their abuse of power may be – authentic expressions like this provide deep resonance.

The voice belonged to Ben Marble, a Mississippi local, a rocker, and a physician at a nearby hospital. His subsequent ballad of the event (listen to it here) is equally rewarding.

Of course, the good doctor’s words were inspired by Cheney’s own statements. The year before, Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont dared to criticize Halliburton, Cheney’s old company, for war profiteering. This irritated the 47th Vice President. When he next saw Senator Leahy on the Senate floor, he gave him this message:

“Fuck Yourself.”

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As it happens, on that very day, the Senate had passed legislation described as the “Defense of Decency Act.” The Act sought to “protect children and families” by increasing fines for the broadcasting of offensive and indecent incidents.

Such are the laws that powerful American leaders spend time on in Washington.

Our most morally upright citizens know that the biggest problems in the world are bad words and boobies.

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That’s where Kevin Martin comes in. He is chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, or FCC.

You might imagine that running the FCC would entail serving the people of the land by insuring democratic access to the airwaves, and preventing a handful of wealthy corporations from controlling all mass communication.

You would be wrong.

Mr. Martin spends a good chunk of his time as national decency policeman, on the prowl for bad words and boobies that tumble onto broadcasts.

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Oh, he’s qualified for the job. He first proved his integrity and moral splendor in 2000 as a lawyer on the Bush-Cheney recount team in Florida. Since taking the top spot at the FCC in 2005, he intensified the FCC’s crackdown on decency with much higher fines for every accidental “shit” and “fuck” that might emerge in a public broadcast.

Last month, however, a federal appeals panel may have finally curbed Martin and the FCC’s great crusade. The court struck down the government policy that fines stations and networks huge sums for the broadcasting of words that Martin deems offensive.

The court reasoned, in part, that if these words were good enough for Cheney and Bush to utter, then they’re good enough for the rest of us.

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Amen.

But it’s important to remember that there are indecent things.

Take, for instance, the American Vice President, who has used elaborate deceptions to construct and conduct a bloody and senseless war that has led to more than 100,000 dead Iraqi civilians, more than 3,600 dead American soldiers, the acceleration and strengthening of Islamic terrorism, and the loss of some half a trillion dollars. He then, as late as last February, characterizes this very same war as a “remarkable achievement.”

Yes.

There are indecent things.

[To sample two offensive songs, click here to hear Eric Idle’s “FCC Song”, and here to listen to RX’s immortal “Dick is a Killer.” You can see the entire video of Ben Marble’s encounter with Cheney here. The illustration of Cheney comes from Amanda Kavanagh, a marvelous artist whose work can be found here and here.]

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Viva Vivoleum!

It hurts to hear someone refer to those running the oil industry as greedy pigs who create war and destroy the earth.

Nothing could be further than the truth.

Not only do they help us run this great nation, but they’ve got an eye on our future as well. Consider, for instance, the good people at ExxonMobil.

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They understand that Earth is a fragile planet. That’s why they’ve led the way in developing safer, cleaner and cheaper alternative fuels.

And their latest innovation may be their greatest.

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Last week, in Calgary, Alberta, officials from ExxonMobil and the U.S. National Petroleum Council gave the keynote speech at GO-EXPO, Canada’s largest oil conference.

In a remarkably provocative presentation before hundreds of oilmen, they acknowledged that current fossil fuel practices may well lead to global cataclysmic climate change. The result would inevitably be war, migration and fatalities on a massive scale.

Which, in turn, could really hinder oil production for the rest of us.

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Fortunately, their scientists and engineers have found an answer. A brilliant one.

Catastrophic devastation is always viewed as a negative event.

Can’t it also be a positive one?

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The answer is yes!

In its PowerPoint presentation, ExxonMobil depicts how we can transform the hundreds of thousands who die from unsafe oil production by processing their bodies into alternative fuel.

This new energy source is called Vivoleum! From life . . . to life!

It’s a wonderful idea and incredibly efficient. Processing plants have been erected throughout Canada and the U.S.

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And with so many corpses that would otherwise just be going to waste, Vivoleum pumps are already operating at full speed.

During a tender moment in the presentation, members of the audience received their own Vivoleum candles – a tearful commemoration for an Exxon janitor who tragically passed away after helping to clean up a toxic spill. His last noble wish was that his body be brightly transformed into Vivoleum candles.

He’s now gone, but his biofuel lights the way to tomorrow’s future!

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It’s sad to report that not all oil corporations are as enlightened as ExxonMobil. At one point during the presentation, certain oil executives in attendance, incensed that they had no stake in the new technology, insisted that the ExxonMobil representatives and their NPC associates be silenced. Local police were dispatched to remove the speakers.

True change is not easy, my friends, and it does not come in a day.

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[Go here for more info on Vivoleum. Check out this animation of a Vivoleum biomass concentration facility and this video tribute to Exxon’s fallen janitor, Reggie. Go here for an article about the human casualties of climate change, and here for great news about the illustrious head of ExxonMobil.]

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The Next Great Species

Gosh, there’s so much negativity in the world. Can’t people understand that everything is proceeding just as it should?

Belinda Haikes explains the matter in her uplifting guest entry:

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