December 2002 Archives

Why we shouldn't attack Iraq

Via Eric Alterman, an excellent paper from the Kennedy School's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs on why Saddam can be contained without going to war.

The Lives They Lived

The NY Times Magazine has some wonderful essays this week, about people who died in 2002:

1% of Americans are worth at least $1 million. What percentage of incoming members of Congress are millionaires? 43%.

Spotted, heard

Spotted, standing in line at the West 18th Street Post Office: Wallace Shawn

Heard, while shopping for used CDs at Academy: "She had the prettiest mudflaps I ever saw" -- a line from a country music song

Art/culture blogs

I haven't really found other blogs, other than Andy's Chest, that talk about art, theatre, and other cultural goings-on in NYC with any regularity. Some of the art people I know have blogs, but don't like to mix their blogging with their "areas of business".

Send me some suggestions! I'm looking for others to give me recommendations on art galleries, books, theatre, music, etc. I can't do it all myself.

Non-NYC ones are OK too.

Gym culture

This is one of the best things I've ever read about gym culture, from The Economist's year-end issue.

Sexy engineer

When I saw this photo today illustrating a NY Times article on robots, I thought it was Glenn for a second. Actuallly, the picture looks better in the newspaper, and Glenn is of course more sexy.


Parallels and Paradoxes

I'm in the middle of a fascinating book, titled Parallels and Paradoxes. It consists of a series of conversations between Daniel Barenboim and Edward W. Said on music, culture, and politics. A sample, from Barenboim:

I still think the greatest sense of isolation and removal from anything, for me -- but this is very subjective, and I do not claim this to be objective -- is in late Beethoven. If you look at the Grosse Fugue, you look at passages of the Missa Solemnis, and you look at the Diabelli Variations or the last three piano sonatas, this is total isolation and removal from the world, much more so than Schoenberg.

A Darwinian explanation for religion?

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From the NY Times Science section, a very interesting article on why religion 'evolved' in human societies.

Good post on Venezuela


This is about constitutional democracy, which we pretend is still important, right?

From Alas, a Blog

A pretty intelligent article on Sean Penn's visit to Iraq.

Penn spoke quietly, with evident sincerity. This was the time for a kind of summing up. For the most part during his three-day visit, Penn had gone out of his way to avoid the cameras, saying that he would share his thoughts at a press conference just prior to leaving Baghdad.

Now, as he continued with his statement, the room was still. Penn said that he was "privileged to have lived a life under our Constitution that has allowed me to dream and prosper." And he continued: "In response to these privileges I feel, both as an American and as a human being, the obligation to accept some level of personal responsibility for the policies of my government, both those I support and any that I may not. Simply put, if there is a war or continued sanctions against Iraq, the blood of Americans and Iraqis will be on our hands."

And then, Sean Penn added: "My trip here is to personally record the human face of the Iraqi people so that their blood – along with that of American soldiers – would not be invisible on my own hands. I sit with you here today in the hopes that any of us present may contribute in any way to a peaceful resolution to the conflict at hand."

Remember, as long as we're pretending to be a democracy, the actions of our government are the responsibility of all of us. The citizens of Iraq, or Afghanistan, do that have that privilege or responsibility.

Could it be... Jews?

Is this code for "blame the Jewish-controlled media?"

Trent Lott on his critics -- emphasis mine:

When you're from Mississippi, when you're conservative and when you're a Christian, there are a lot of people that don't like that. But I fell into their trap and so I have only myself to blame.

2 Recommended Chelsea Shows

Dana Schutz at LFL Gallery -- no pressure to buy, since they're all sold.

Andy Warhol Still Lifes at Paul Kasmin -- no pressure to buy, since you can't afford them.

Stop him!

The cover of yesterday's Daily Mirror:


Far Away / Antigone

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Caryl Churchill's latest play, "Far Away," is at New York Theater Workshop, and it's brilliant. I don't feel like I can write a good review of it, but the people that call it a "tiny epic" are correct. It's about an hour long, but it has more substance than most plays I've seen lately. Frances McDormand is brilliant, as are the other members of the cast. The equally fabulous Kathleen Chalfant will take over in McDormand's role soon. The sexy Chris Messina, last seen (by us at least) in "This Thing of Darkness," by Craig Lucas and David Schulner, also stars.

I know most of my friends in NY don't have a lot of money to spend on culture, so check out the "Cheap Tickets" link at the top of the NYTW site for information on rush tickets or ushering.

NY Times review


Tonight we saw Mac Wellman's "Antigone" at Dance Theater Workshop, a collaboration with Annie-B Parson. It's great fun, and it was one of the most beautiful -- visually, musically, and verbally -- evenings of theatre I've had in years. The cast is awesome, and the music and sound design are by Cynthia Hopkins. The Village Voice review seems pretty fair to me.

Blue Button Project

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The Nation has a good essay by Adrienne Rich, titled "Making the Connections," regarding the fact that the pro-corporate, pro-war, anti-civil liberties activities of the current regime are all parts of the same agenda.

This makes a good excuse to link to the Blue Button Project -- I set up the web site.

Head over to James's site to read more about it.

The French really know how to advertise

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An ad for lube:


Frist to be next majority leader?

Good blog post from Nathan Newman on Bill Frist.

Remember my post a few days ago about the Eli Lilly protection amendment mysteriously appearing in the Homeland Security Act?

The language was taken from Frist's original version of a bill to protect them.

Why isn't this getting more coverage?

The LA Times is covering this story, but I haven't seen it anywhere else except from bloggers.

I find it very disturbing that other major newspapers seem to be ignoring it, or burying it away from the front page.

Hundreds Are Detained After Visits to INS

Hundreds of men and boys from Middle Eastern countries were arrested by federal immigration officials in Southern California this week when they complied with orders to appear at INS offices for a special registration program.

The arrests drew thousands of people to demonstrate Wednesday in Los Angeles.

Immigration and Naturalization Service spokesmen refused Wednesday to say how many people the agency had detained, what the specific charges were or how many were still being held. But officials speaking anonymously said they would not dispute estimates by lawyers for detainees that the number across Southern California was 500 to 700. In Los Angeles, up to one-fourth of those who showed up to register were jailed, lawyers said.

The number of people arrested in this region appears to have been considerably larger than elsewhere in the country, perhaps because of the size of the Southland's Iranian population. Monday's registration deadline applied to males 16 and older from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Sudan and Syria. Men from 13 other nations, mostly in the Mideast and North Africa, are required to register next month.

Many of those arrested, according to their lawyers, had already applied for green cards and, in some instances, had interviews scheduled in the near future. Although they had overstayed their visas, attorneys argue, their clients had already taken steps to remedy the situation and were following the regulations closely.

"These are the people who've voluntarily gone" to the INS, said Mike S. Manesh of the Iranian American Lawyers Assn. "If they had anything to do with terrorism, they wouldn't have gone."


I've only seen an AP story from the NY Times.

Random political data

From 2000: McCain and Bush flirted with neo-Confederate movement.

FBI warns corporations to look out for violence from anti-war protesters.

50 Trent Lott Facts. My favorites:

41. As youngest member of the House Judiciary Committee, he voted against impeachment of Richard Nixon in 1974. Twenty-five years later, he voted for the impeachment of Bill Clinton.

46. Once declared he feels closer to Jefferson Davis "than any other man in America."

47. In mid-'90s, organized the Dark Ages Weekend, a mid-winter outing for ultra right-wingers at Miami's posh Doral Golf Resort and Spa in Miami.

49.In 1981, helped Jackson, Miss., annex white suburbs to dilute political strength of black voters.

Our leader speaks

"There's only one person who hugs the mothers and the widows, the wives and the kids upon the death of their loved one. Others hug but having committed the troops, I've got an additional responsibility to hug and that's me and I know what it's like." -- Washington, D.C., Dec. 11, 2002.

One word: ick.

Happy Birthday to James

Go wish James a happy birthday. I won't be posting much today -- off to get my hair cut and then lunch at Esca.

$10,000 Reward

Lisa at Ruminate This writes about's offer of $10,000 for information about who inserted the provision into the Homeland Security Bill protecting Eli Lilly from lawsuits:

In November, as Congress finalized the legislation authorizing a new Department of Homeland Security, two paragraphs suddenly appeared in the bill giving drug maker Eli Lilly & Company something it desired: a shield from lawsuits by parents who claim the company's vaccines caused their children's autism.

The provision diverts those suits from state courts to a federal 'vaccine court' where damages are capped at $250,000 - small compensation for a child's lifetime of medical care. And because any damages awarded by the vaccine court are paid by U.S. taxpayers, manufacturers are relieved of liability.

We have a very broken democracy when provisions like this become law and no person has to take credit or blame for it. Bills don't write themselves.

One for the gay trekkies out there

Don't Ask, Don't Tell in Star Trek Land -- scroll down a bit to find the story.

They're all the same

New report out from People For the American Way:

Bush, Lott, and Ashcroft: Shared Agendas Threaten Civil Rights Gains

SONDA passes w/o transgender protection

After 31 years, the NY State Senate allowed a vote on SONDA and it passed.

I'm sad to see this betrayal of the transgender community, who need protection as much as anyone. After watching the Empire State Pride Agenda (ESPA) coddle Republicans like Pataki and Giuliani, I can say that I am even more disappointed in them than ever. I once really respected Matt Foreman, the executive director. I have marched with him, while he was head of the Anti-Violence Project, in some scary neighborhoods of this city. This statement is very depressing:

Foreman estimated that 75 percent of transgender people in the state live in New York City -- where a city law already protects them against discrimination.

"It's totally unfair for all these downstate people to be saying, 'All you upstate gays can wait"' for an anti-gay discrimination bill, said Foreman.

He said establishment of protection against discrimination for homosexuals was a historic step for gays and lesbians rights advocates, who plan to propose a sweeping change of the state's human rights laws next year.

"You really can't be advancing things like domestic partnership rights when, if you go to your employer and say, 'I have a domestic partner,' they can fire you because you're gay," Foreman said.

Now that it has passed, I know ESPA isn't going to use any of its budget or political capital to have them added. They will work on things like domestic partner benefits and other things that mostly benefit middle class (and up) gays, while the queens -- the kind of people who started the Stonewall uprising -- can flee to NYC if they're unlucky enough to live anywhere else.

I always hoped the queer community could be better than this, but we're as likely to jettison the weakest -- and least "mainstream" -- people as anyone.

Mindless Self Indulgence

I don't know anything about them, but I like the album cover:


Scary picture!

Look at the graphic CNN is using for the story of Bush "moving ahead" on missile defense:


They choose not to link to their own story about the latest test failure -- $100 million down the drain. The Washington Post story is better anyway.

I don't think he explained how this system will protect us from hijackers with box cutters or bombs on boats in the NY harbor, but I'm sure we'll all feel safer.

... or as pandagon says, this is like putting a big sign up that says "Nuke us before 2004!"

Anyone looking to go to law school?

Cool fellowship from Hofstra:

Fellowships for the Advocacy for the Equality of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered People

Each year, the Law School will award fellowships to up to three(3) incoming J.D. students with a history of advocacy on behalf of the LGBT community.


1. A tuition fellowship of up to $20,000 for each year of law school.

2. A $5,000 stipend to support a summer externship related to LGBT advocacy.

3. A comprehensive course of study devoted to equality, including courses in Sexuality and the Law, Sex Discrimination, Jurisprudence, and an independent study and tutorial designed to address issues of particular concern to the LGBT community.

4. Experience in legal advocacy for the LGBT community through the Law School's externship program which places students with nonprofit organizations, including those devoted to legal advocacy on behalf of the LGBT community.

5. Participation in a mentoring program with LeGal, the Lesbian and Gay Lawyers Association of Greater New York, representing one of the most diverse legal practice communities in the United States inclusive of LGBT individuals.

The Bush administration is arguing that the rich pay too much taxes, and the poor and middle class don't pay enough.

I love how the GOP accuses the Democrats of encouraging "class war" whenever they're questioned about giving tax cuts to the rich. Honey, we've had class war for 20 years, and the rich are winning.

James gets published

Go congratulate James on his letter in the Daily News responding to Jonathan Capehart's ridiculous column on SONDA and transgender protection.


When they edited his letter, they messed up his grammar. He understands subject/verb agreement, in case you were wondering.

I love the Public Library

I did one of my only "holiday" things today. James and I went to the New York Public Library's annual holiday open house: free wine and food, musicians, stilt walkers, dancers, and magicians were scattered around the main building at 42nd and Fifth.

Of course the musical highlight was the West Point Glee Club:


Mr. 3rd-from-the-left was wearing a Santa hat with little flashing lights -- and had the most stripes, whatever that means. He was a star, and he knew it.

The NYPL is a great organization, and a $40 donation gets you an invitation for two ($100 gets four people in). It's worth it!

There is a cool exhibit at the moment on the history of New York restaurants and food. It's up through March 1, 2003 -- and it's free.

U.S. to foreign artists: we don't want you

New US Visa Rules Force Foreign Artists to Stay Away

I didn't know this:

Less widely know is that all would-be foreign male visitors to the US aged between 16 and 45 -- but not women -- must now account for every country visited in the last decade, in case they are terrorists.

There is a news story that Sen. Don Nickles of Oklahoma (no. 2 in the Senate) wants a new vote on the GOP Majority Leader. Look at this quote:

"I am concerned that Senator Lott has been weakened to the point that may jeopardize his ability to enact our agenda and speak to all Americans," Nickles said in a statement. "There are several outstanding senators who are more than capable of effective leadership, and I hope we have an opportunity to choose."

In an ABC interview, he added: "Can he be effective? Can he campaign in places like Chicago? I don't want to squander our ability to get things done. We only have a short window this year."

What's with the Chicago bit? I guess he thinks the GOP has the blacks in Oklahoma and Mississippi under control, but they're not as docile in some of those Yankee cities?


Remember people, Nickles isn't exactly a nice alternative. He was one of the main opponents of Hormel as ambassador to Luxembourg:

He said that President's Clinton's appointment of philanthropist James Hormel, who is openly gay, to an ambassador's post in Luxembourg should be denied because Hormel promotes "immoral behavior."

The Bible, according to the Oklahoma Senator's calculations, teaches that homosexual behavior is "a sin" and "if one promotes that behavior…that person shouldn't be a representative of this country."

Here is some information on his voting record.

Gangs of New York

I haven't seen it yet, but I plan to do so soon. Pete Hamill has column today in the Daily News that everyone should read before seeing the movie, reminding us that the history in the movie is bunk -- go see it, but don't think it's real.

Like Dan'l, I'm a big fan of Luc Sante's Low Life as a good history of the seedier sides of NYC. It's another thing worth reading around the time you see the movie.

Tracking John Poindexter

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Keeping Track of John Poindexter

The head of the government's Total Information Awareness project, which aims to root out potential terrorists by aggregating credit-card, travel, medical, school and other records of everyone in the United States, has himself become a target of personal data profiling.

Online pranksters, taking their lead from a San Francisco journalist, are publishing John Poindexter's home phone number, photos of his house and other personal information to protest the TIA program.

What they really meant to say

The Wau Wau Sisters

In honor of my friend Jonathan, I present The Wau Wau Sisters' cover of "C'mon Feel the Noise!"

MP3 (3MB)

Now he owes me the pictures of him in an S&M/Leather production of a Jean Genet play in grad school.

Rather pathetic

Hilary Clinton sees that the shifting sentiments of the public regarding l'Affaire Lott require her to modify her initial tepid comments a bit. I sent her an email saying I thought Lott should be censured by the Senate, at a minimum. I think he should be forced out, except that a damaged GOP is probably the safest thing for all of us.

Click MORE to see the December 11 and December 13 versions of her e-mail. I didn't send a new e-mail in the intervening period. It appears two days later that she is shocked, simply shocked, to find racist behavior coming from Mr. Lott. I guess she hasn't paid attention for the last 20 years.

Good summary of l'affaire Lott so far



Voters seem not to mind gay-bashing insinuations

Shortly before Saturday's runoff Senate race in Louisiana, the raspy voice of a Bill Clinton impersonator was heard in a radio commercial that was produced by the campaign of Suzanne Haik Terrell, the Republican candidate.

"Mary Landrieu is so liberal, she might be closer to Hillary than I am," the voice said.

Pope: just keep it quiet

I love the MSNBC headline: 'Smoking gun' in church crisis?

The file on Burns contained not only lurid revelations about the priest’s behavior but also said Law told the Vatican that his archdiocese had assigned Burns to two parishes even though it knew of his “proclivity” toward molesting boys.

In his 1999 order defrocking Burns, the pope said the former priest “ought to live away from the places where his previous condition is known.”

But the pope’s order also offered the man’s religious superior an alternative to forcing Burns to abandon the areas where his condition was known.

The religious superior “is able to dispense from this clause of the decree if it is foreseen that the presence of the suppliant will cause no scandal,” the document said.

At the rate things are going, I'm going to need a "Religion" category.

When homocons attack

Jonathan Capehart says Tom Duane doesn't support gay rights if he's not willing to abandon transgendered people to get SONDA passed. James tells it like it is.

Why bother paying attention?

Clinton was nearly impeached for lying about sex, but Bush appoints Elliott Abrams, who lied to Congress in the Iran-Contra affair.

The judge that says we can't see Cheney's energy task force records fought to release Clinton White House records when he was a deputy of Kenneth Starr.

Trent Lott says we would have been better off if the segregationist Dixiecrats had won the presidency with Strom Thurmond, but it takes days for the 'liberal' media to notice.

The U.S. intercepts the Iraq arms dossier intended for the U.N. to "make copies" and says it will only share it with certain members of the Security Council -- not, so far, the weapons inspection team. Cynics might argue this is because it lists suppliers, including the U.S. and other Security Council members.

What pill can I take to stop noticing things? We're not even pretending to be a real republic anymore. One party state anyone?

More reasons to love Viggo Mortensen


He appeared on Charlie Rose, ostensibly to promote the new Lord of the Rings movie, while wearing a No More Blood For Oil t-shirt.

Art to see

Moving Pictures and Bill Viola at the Guggenheim

Group show at Massimo Audiello -- in the 526 West 26th St. building

Joyce Pensato at Elga Wimmer -- same building

K48 show -- same building -- photo

Apex is doing a cool thing -- a different show every day. I recommend Charles Goldman on Dec. 12. We went to see Dean Daderko's curation, featuring our friend Nancy Hwang, on Saturday:


For more info on the Charles Goldman event on Dec. 12, click MORE.

Madonna really is pretty cool

From the People For The American Way auction:

Madonna -- Ray of Light platinum award, signed personally to buyer

A happy story from Palestine

Palestinian-Israeli hotline melts hate

Sammy Waed never thought he would become friends with an Israeli soldier, especially one who had occupied his hometown of Ramallah.

But a month ago, the 20-year-old called a new hotline and ended up speaking to Arik, a 23-year-old from Tel Aviv.

"Arik told me how much he hated his army service, because he was in the middle of a civilian population, policing children and causing harm to innocent people," Waed said.

"Before, I thought Israelis didn't care at all when innocent Palestinians suffer and are killed," he said. "But now I know they do care. And now I have hope that there can be peace."

Waed is just one of thousands of Israelis and Palestinians who are using the Hello Shalom-Hello Salaam hotline, a phone service that enables Palestinians and Israelis to reach out across the divide of hate, violence and mistrust that characterizes the two worlds.


Fitness site or porn site?

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You decide: Real Men Real Workouts

I saw a postcard for this in one of those card racks that show up everywhere in NYC. Is this for real? It makes GQ look straight.


Here is what Senator Trent Lott, Republican of Mississippi, said yesterday at Senator Strom Thurmond's birthday party, according to ABCNEWS' O'Keefe. "I want to say this about my state: When Strom Thurmond ran for president we voted for him. We're proud of it. And if the rest of the country had of followed our lead we wouldn't of had all these problems over all these years, either."

Thurmom was running as a Dixiecrat, a pro-segregration party whose platform stated that for a black person, "his racial constitution has been fashioned to exclude any idea of voluntary cooperation on his part. "

Read Eschaton for more.

Trent Lott is one of the most powerful men in our country. We don't have much room to criticize other countries for their right-wing politicians.


There is another article here.

Giuliani as hero, blah blah blah

From Crain's New York Business:

The city’s debt per capita has more than doubled since fiscal 1990, to $5,083 per head, according to a new report from the city comptroller’s office. The figure was $2,490 per citizen in 1990. That rate of growth exceeds the inflation rate by 63% and the growth in city tax revenues by 55%, the charter-mandated report said

In addition, the comptroller found that debt service costs will grow about 25% by fiscal 2006, reducing the funds available for city services. The costs are projected to approach 20 cents of every tax dollar, compared with 16 cents of every dollar today.

Aren't we glad Giuliani used the boom years of the 90s to get NYC in better financial shape, fix up all of the roads and bridges, improve public transit...

Great blogger on politics

Not that most of you want to read more political blogs, I suspect, but she is really good. On the state of the Washington Post:

The point is, it just feels like such a waste of time to try to read stories by journalists who are really just reporting on what's going on inside their own heads. Fair enough for me to do it on my own weblog, but no one's paying me for this. But in The Newspapers of Record? It's like a horrible joke, except that it's not funny.

[via Rittenhouse]


I'm going to the White Columns and Schroeder Romero openings tonight. I should be at the latter (in Williamsburg) at 8ish. E-mail me or call me if any of you want to meet up there.

So tell me sonny, are you gay?

Danziger on Leave No Child Behind.

[via TBOGG]

Gay rights in the UK

Gay men, lesbians and bisexual people are to be offered the same rights as married couples, a government minister indicated today, although she said this will not amount to "gay marriages".

I love the Guardian! They have a link to Peter Tatchell's home page at the bottom under "useful links".

Australian women

Nicole Kidman isn't the only fabulous woman in Australia.

Rocked by Rape

The Evolutionary Control Committee ... have topped themselves with this stroke of genius. It's months worth of Dan Rather speaking on the CBS Evening News, edited down to its essence -- Rather naming one calamity after another ... and set to a cut up and rearranged AC/DC groove. ... This could easily be cute and nothing more, but the ECC has made it an actual song... The B-side has a very long string of Rather disasterspeak on its own. Mix your own hit! -- College Music Journal (CMJ), 8/98

Go and download it right now!

Some poetry

I get regular emails of poetry from RealPoetik. They don't put the stuff they send out on the web right away, so I'll post the latest one, from Stacie Barrie:

I Sold You, You Sold Me
(a poem in Newspeak)

From the age of pavement
From the age of split seconds I salute:
Not files
Not papers
Not pictures
No need
No mini
No maxi
No need
Minus time
Minus space
Plus persons
Plus statues
Plus corporations undead
Freeway, landfill, proving grounds
Newthink bellyfeels prolefeed
Old behind
Old below
Oldthink always new
Victory is apathy


A couple more, found while researching her on the web:

Outskirts, by Stacie Barry

Jesus in the Psych Ward, by Richard Jordan

untitled, by Sal Salasin

I think I'll buy some

Bin Laden Used Your Gas Money

Sept 12: Sell Your SUV Day

Protest Bumper Stickers

Too fat to fight?

US troops are losing battle of the bulge

As American troops prepare for war in Iraq a report is about to reveal that more than half of them are overweight.

A panel of nine medical experts commissioned by the Pentagon is expected to say that 53.9 per cent of US military personnel over the age of 20 would be classified as too fat to fight under federal obesity standards.

A fifth of those aged under 20 would also fail the fat test, The Times has learnt. Iraq may not have such sophisticated weapons, but its soldiers at least fit their uniforms better.


A successful method used to recruit teenagers is to allow fast-food chains such as McDonald’s and Kentucky Fried Chicken to operate restaurants on bases. Mess food is no longer obligatory.


Maybe these guys can provide some fitness tips.

Voices of the young

I was just walking by the High School of Fashion Industries on West 24th Street and saw a small demonstration -- about 15 or 20 students and 5-10 teachers -- protesting war against Iraq and the provision of students' private contact information to military recruiters. The chant I heard: "No Child Left Behind is the new draft!"

FYI: Bush cut the latest budget's education funding below the previous year's funding.

Mr. Sullivan


Why do so many gay men, and scary right wing people, link to Andrew Sullivan? A number of the scariest religious posters to Jim's site link to him on their blogs. I also see gay men who otherwise don't seem delusional putting links on their pages to him. Ugh.

This is a man that writes a column for the Washington Times, owned by Revered Sun Myung Moon. He shills for the pharmaceutical industry while having them sponsor his web site. He, a gay Catholic ex-pat from Britain, seems to consider everyone who doesn't support Bush a traitor. He also has rather shoddy analytical skills when it comes to America's "enemies". He uses "Islamofascists" -- a horrid neologism -- to refer both to Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein, even though the latter is a secular dictator. I suspect Mr. Sullivan can't tell his Arabs apart.

A few useful sites for people as they work on removing Mr. Sullivan from their web sites and their lives:

Smarter Andrew Sullivan



David E's Fablog


There. That's the last time I ever intend to mention him.

A new low

The fashion at my gym has reached a new low. Today I actually saw someone wearing a patterned silk vest, with no shirt underneath, with his gym shorts.

What would Betty do?

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The latest newsletter from Betty Bowers is out!

Some favorites:

Knowledge is not something our current President is fond of -- but he is fair about it, as he doesn't want the rest of us to have much of it either. As you probably know, President Bush has stood firm in his resolve to keep all potentially embarrassing information regarding 9/11 a secret. To ensure that the President is never hurt politically by the death of all those people in New York, he has appointed Henry Kissinger to chair any prying. With Mr. Kissinger's pedigree of nefarious skullduggery (such as overthrowing a democratic government in Chile that had a pesky habit of voting for people who were simply not our sort), Henry will go into the job with no naïve notions about the American people needing to know facts that might deflate their blind support of their president. Glory! For if there is one thing this administration would like more than strip mining Yellowstone, it is to keep secrets. Indeed, just last week, Mr. Ashcroft's office asked a court to seal all the records to a lawsuit involving poison in vaccinations, lest the litigation-crazy parents of dead children use the information to sue pharmaceutical companies. After all the money those wonderful companies gave the GOP, it was the least that the President could do. After all, dead children don't vote -- even in Florida!

Remember children, pregnancy and disease are caused by knowledge.

Betty presents religion in the news, also known as You make Jesus vomit.

Tracey Baran

One of our works by Tracey is up at her show at The Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago. I can't find an image of our work -- probably too "explicit", but I found an interview and some images.

Hot art opening

This should be great tonight, but I also expect it to be a zoo. Who puts a big group show with lots of sexy people on the 10th floor of a building?!

I'm giving you the whole press release, since I can't find a link that has all of the information.

John Connelly Presents:
K48-3: Teenage Rebel -- The Bedroom Show
Curated by Scott Hug

526 W 26th Street, Suite 1023
New York, NY 10001

Exhibit Dates: December 3, 2002 - January 19, 2003
Opening: Tues, December 3, 6 - 9 pm
Gallery Hours: Tues - Sat, 11am - 6pm


Run, do not walk, to Winterreise at John Jay. I'm too tired from fixing Jim's computer to post more right now, but it was one of the best evenings of singing/dance/Gesamtkunstwerk I have ever seen, featuring Schubert's Winterreise, Trisha Brown's choreography, Jennifer Tipton's lighting, Pedja Muzijevic's accompaniment, and the singing (and dancing!) talents of Simon Keenlyside:



Read James's report too.

Score one for the Brits

When it comes to politically influential Cubans, the Bush family likes terrorists.

I was reading a review of Cuba Confidential: Love and Vengeance in Miami and Havana in the Economist (subscribers only area unfortunately) and came across this, which I had forgotten:

She interviews Luis Posada Carriles, Mr Castro's most persistent would-be assassin. She is surely right to criticise George Bush senior for his ill-considered pardon of Orlando Bosch, who with Mr Posada was responsible for placing a bomb on a Cubana airliner in 1976, killing 73 civilians.

Remember the outrage over Marc Rich's pardon by Clinton? At the time of Bush's pardon, the New York Times decided it wasn't news fit to print. They didn't write about it at all.

Since most of you don't have Economist subscriptions, there is a longer review in The Guardian with additional juicy details.

The president's younger brother [Jeb] was also on the payroll in the 80s of the prominent Cuban exile Miguel Recarey, who had earlier assisted the CIA in attempts to assassinate President Castro.

Recarey, who ran International Medical Centres (IMC), employed Jeb Bush as a real estate consultant and paid him a $75,000 fee for finding the company a new location, although the move never took place, which raised questions at the time. Jeb Bush did, however, lobby the Reagan/Bush administration vigorously and successfully on behalf of Recarey and IMC. "I want to be very wealthy," Jeb Bush told the Miami News when questioned during that period.

In 1985, Jeb Bush acted as a conduit on behalf of supporters of the Nicaraguan contras with his father, then the vice-president, and helped arrange for IMC to provide free medical treatment for the contras.

Recarey was later charged with massive medicare fraud but fled the US before his trial and is now a fugitive.


Most controversially, at the request of Jeb, Mr Bush Sr intervened to release the convicted Cuban terrorist Orlando Bosch from prison and then granted him US residency.

According to the justice department in George Bush Sr's administration, Bosch had participated in more than 30 terrorist acts. He was convicted of firing a rocket into a Polish ship which was on passage to Cuba. He was also implicated in the 1976 blowing-up of a Cubana plane flying to Havana from Venezuela in which all 73 civilians on board were killed.

CIA memorandums strongly suggest, according to Bardach's book, that Bosch was one of the conspirators, and quotes the then secretary of state, Henry Kissinger, as writing that the "US government had been planning to suggest Bosch's deportation before Cubana airlines crash took place for his suspected involvement in other terrorist acts and violation of his parole".

Bosch's release, often referred to in the US media as a pardon, was the result of pressure brought by hardline Cubans in Miami, with Jeb Bush serving as their point man. Bosch now lives in Miami and remains unrepentant about his militant activities, according to Bardach.

In July this year, Jeb Bush nominated Raoul Cantero, the grandson of Batista, as a Florida supreme court judge despite his lack of experience. Mr Cantero had previously represented Bosch and acted as his spokesman, once describing Bosch on Miami radio as a "great Cuban patriot".

I chose to highlight The Economist review first, since some of my less enlightened readers choose to see The Guardian as too left-wing to be reliable -- the sort of people who quote Fox News on their web sites.

73 people died on that airplane. Where is the right-wing outrage over "coddling terrorists?"

World AIDS Day


I present an article discussing the history of


Living with AIDS in this country is like living through a war that's happening only for those people in the trenches. Every time a shell explodes you look around to discover that you've lost more of your friends. But nobody else notices, it isn't happening to them.
-- Vito Russo

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