Now This Log

Archives: October 2001

Thursday, 25 October 2001

Crossing Over, the show for the overly credulous and wishful, has decided that it won't publicly degrade victims of the events of September 11 and their families after all:

Studios USA cans terrorist victims' seance [TVInsite]
Citing "a reaction that none of us expected," the company's president Steve Rosenberg explained that while some segments for the shows have been taped, they will not be broadcast at all. The shows, tentatively scheduled for November sweeps, would have featured psychic John Edward trying to communicate the messages of Sept. 11 victims for their surviving family members.

...He reiterated that victims' families were the ones that were leading the charge to get these shows done. In fact, he points out, many families affected by the tragedy have gone to see Edward privately for readings, he explains.
[sigh] Whatever gets you through, I guess. permanent link

Don't, repeat don't, nuke your mail. [Burlington County Times via Backup Brain via Obscure Store]
A township woman's microwave caught on fire yesterday after she attempted to "cook" some mail in the appliance...

According to a news report on MSNBC's Web site, microwaves might be able to "sanitize" mail, but it would take approximately 20 minutes [??!].

That's not a feasible option because paper placed in the microwave can easily catch fire within minutes ... The microwave dries out paper, reducing its ignition temperature until it catches on fire.
permanent link

Tuesday, 23 October 2001

Scary stuff, finally disclosed by the FBI...

Pictures of the Daschle, Brokaw and NY Post anthrax letters, including the inside contents [FBI]
09-11-01. This is next. Take Penacilin Now. Death to America. Death to Israel. Allah is great.
Also, the FBI's PDF about "What To Do If You Receive a Suspicious Letter or Package" that I referred to last week has been revised to be much easier to download; now it's only 287KB instead of a megabyte, and it renders (displays) faster in Acrobat.

All current FBI press releases. permanent link

The 2002 Demotivators are out!

My favorites: Consulting and Irresponsibility. [found via Flutterby] permanent link

Monday, 22 October 2001

In the wall-to-wall television coverage of anthrax fear, one particular story which you might think would be included is getting curiously little play. You have to look pretty hard to find even these mentions:

Ask clinics about fear [Boston Globe]
Those who staff abortion clinics, of necessity, are a determined lot. Seven of their own have been murdered in recent years simply for providing women with access to a constitutionally protected medical procedure. This week's batch of [110] threatening letters is only the most recent. ... All of those letters were hoaxes, but none led to even a single arrest.

"Of course, we're sorry that Tom Daschle and Tom Brokaw and their staffs have to suffer the fear we have suffered. But why is an assault on them any more horrible than an assault on a young woman who opens the mail at a women's health clinic in North Carolina?"

US Attorney General John Ashcroft warned yesterday that those who would perpetrate an anthrax hoax at this time are guilty of a "grotesque transgression of the public trust." He did not cite antiabortion extremists as an example but mentioned, instead, an employee of the Department of Environmental Protection in Connecticut who, in a misguided attempt at humor, left a harmless white powder on a co-worker's desk and stood silent while the building was evacuated and the workers decontaminated. That stunning lapse in judgment could yield the jokester five years in prison and a multimillion-dollar fine.

Where, one wonders, is a similar vigilance to apprehend and prosecute those who aim not to amuse but to terrify women and their doctors, and to deny them their legal right to terminate an unwanted pregnancy?
Planned Parenthood Offices Nationwide Receive Envelopes Containing Unknown White Powder [PlannedParenthood]
Some of the letters included messages from the "Army of God", a domestic terrorist group that has claimed responsibility for attacks on reproductive healthcare providers. The envelopes, mailed to affiliates on the east coast and Midwest, had pre-printed return addresses from the U.S. Marshall's Office and the Secret Service. Some have an embossed message that reads, "Time Sensitive Urgent Security Notice Open Immediately." The letters were mailed from Columbus, OH; Atlanta, GA; Chattanooga and Knoxville, TN. At an affiliate in Greensboro, N.C., an initial field test on the grainy substance has come back negative.
permanent link

Sunday, 21 October 2001

Some Aristotle for the day, prompted by this quote seen at the gym:

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit.

That's a good one to run across after I've played video games or watched stupid shows for too long. "what we repeatedly do..."

Another framing of the theme:

Moral excellence comes about as a result of habit.
We become just by doing just acts,
temperate by doing temperate acts,
brave by doing brave acts.

And these two are especially good for the present time:

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.

Anyone can become angry -- that is easy. But to be angry with the right person at the right time, and for the right purpose and in the right way -- that is not within everyone's power; that is not easy.
permanent link

Links, exploration and
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Steve Bogart

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