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March 27th, 2004

The Wesser of the Two Weevils


"Were it let to me to decide whether we should have government without newpapers or newspapers without a government, I should not hestitate a moment to prefer the latter.'
Thomas Jefferson, 1787

Hi folks,

Favourite Reader Feedback of the Week


I decided it's time I stopped reading your newsletter on M.'s computer, and had it sent directly to me. Can you please subscribe me? Thanks. By the way, after doing the 'Who Owns the Fish' puzzle, I was hungry for more, and am now dangerously close to being addicted to www.puzzles.com - I'm blaming you, and Einstein! Looking forward to receiving my very own copy of the next newsletter. " Belinda M.

(Note: That means Belinda's in the 2% according to Einstein. But careful of doing it too much, Belinda (puzzles, that is) you could end up smart . . . but blind - speaking of which: what did Helen Keller say when someone gave her a cheese grater? "This is the most violent book I have ever read!" (boom boom!)

If you missed the 'Fish Puzzle'- Einstein's Riddle':

I'm Feewing Wucky - Google

Google has a Language Tools bar on the top of their search page where you can choose to view in any language you want including the following: Elmer Fudd, Gaelic, Latin, Pig Latin, Klingon

Dean Endorses Kerry

WASHINGTON (AP) - Democrats embraced John Kerry as their new chief with a show of solidarity from Presidents Clinton and Carter, campaign rivals and former foes who are putting aside their differences in an effort to oust President Bush.

`We now have a standard bearer of the Democratic Party,'' Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe said Thursday, which the party titled `Unity Day'' following a fractious primary race.(more)



'The Wesser of the Two Weevils.'
President Elmer W. Fudd

Environmental voters who have longed for a choice better than "the lesser of two evils" in elections now have the race of a lifetime. President Bush has accrued the worst environmental record of any president in modern history, acting in ways large and small to dismantle our most important environmental protections and reward his contributors from polluting industries. John Kerry has made the environment one of his signature issues throughout his political career, earning the highest LCV score of any of the original 10 Democratic candidates. Long before he entered the presidential race, Kerry championed clean air and water and defended natural treasures like the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. So for your friends who like to use "not a worth of difference" as an excuse for not to getting involved in the campaign, you can tell them that this year the difference can be measured in millions -- millions of pounds of additional pollution in our air, millions of dollars from polluters funneled into the Bush campaign, millions of acres of pristine land to protect from oil companies, and millions of votes needed to put a true environmental hero in the White House. Learn more about John Kerry's environmental record and LCV's work to replace the worst environmental president in history with the best. Read about the Bush administration's abysmal environmental record.(more) (thanks to Maireid Sullivan)

Game Activity

Learn To Draw President Elmer W. Fudd (Draw)


Messages of Hope
In support of the release of children in Immigration Detention.

Send a card to a child

Messages of Hope is a Brisbane based project designed to reach out and connect with refugee and migrant children who are currently spending their lives in immigration detention.

Currently there are approximately 160 children locked up in immigration detention centres in Australia, Nauru and Christmas Island and nearly 100 others are in other forms of detention. These other forms of detention include being under 24-hour guard in a motel, hospital or state correctional facility. None are criminals. The detrimental effects that current Government policy inflicts on these children - physically, socially and psychologically - has been well documented.

Imagine a six year old girl who has been in detention for two years receiving a brightly coloured hand made card it might tell a story or a contain a photo of a six year old boy smiling at her it simply might just say 'hang in there, I am thinking of you'. (more)
(thanks to param.)


Powell Slips, 'Crusade' Re-Enters US Lexicon on War

" Why shouldn't you make an atheist mad? Because he might burn a question mark on your front lawn."

Guiseppi, the Lamented

"K? K? K?" Manuel, of Fawlty Towers

"We gave them 24, 48 hours to consider it and then I called President Musharraf and said: 'We need your answer now. We need you as part of this campaign, this Crusade'," Powell recalled in testimony before a commission investigating the attacks.

Bush's original "crusade" comment -- made after the attacks as Washington tried to build a coalition to fight al-Qaeda -- drew winces from Middle East watchers and diplomats who regarded it as impolitic. It also offended Muslims, many of whom are still riled by the memory of the campaigns by medieval Christian Europe to capture and hold Jerusalem." (more)

Favourite Email Address of the Week!

~~ freeyourmindandyourasswillfollow@hotmail.com ~~

Bush's Terror Hysteria
By Robert Parry

Commemorating the first anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, George W. Bush gave the American people a glimpse of his vision of the future: a grim world where a near endless war is waged against forces of evil by forces loyal to Bush who represents what is good.

"There is no neutral ground ­ no neutral ground ­ in the fight between civilization and terror, because there is no neutral ground between good and evil, freedom and slavery, and life and death," Bush said on March 19. "The terrorists are offended not merely by our policies; they're offended by our existence as free nations. No concession will appease their hatred. No accommodation will satisfy their endless demands."

So to Bush, the "war on terror" is a fight to the finish. Eliminate everyone who would or might engage in terrorism before they destroy civilization and impose slavery on the rest of us. To Bush's supporters, this black-and-white analysis represents "moral clarity." To others around the world, it is taking on the look of madness. (more)

Note: What is called 'good' and what is called 'evil' have swapped and exchanged places so many times throughout our civilization's history that at any given time, the only way to determine whether Item 'A' is EVIL, is simply by it's PROXIMITY to Item 'B,' which we have today deemed to be GOOD.

Is there such a thing as ABSOLUTE EVIL, as most organized religions would have us believe? Could be. But, if so, NO human mind has the ability to understand it. (e.g. the Witch Burnings, the Inquisition, America as The Great Satan, even Darth Vader: - the list of getting it just plain WRONG is endless.) In my opinion, the word is archaic and obsolete and fuzzy thinking at best and, like the misappropriated swastika image, should NEVER be used again, especially to judge other people.

(swastika - 1871, from Skt. svastika-s, from svasti-s "well-being, luck," from su- "well" + as-, root of asti "(he) is." Originally an ancient cosmic or religious symbol thought to bring good luck. Use in reference to the Nazi emblem first recorded in Eng. in 1932. The Ger. word was Hakenkreuz, lit. "hook-cross.")

Iraqi Women with Fewer Rights and Protections than Under the Saddam Hussein Regime

WASHINGTON - Women's organizations in Iraq have reported increases in rapes, abductions, 'honour' killings, and domestic violence in the lawlessness which has prevailed since the U.S. invasion," said Anne Anderson, member of the party's International Committee and of the D.C. Statehood Green Party. "How tragic that one of the legacies of our military occupations is a loss of security for women and children." (more)

Jimmy Carter Savages Blair and Bush: 'Their War was Based on Lies'
by Andrew Buncombea
Jimmy Carter, the former US president, has strongly criticized George Bush and Tony Blair for waging an unnecessary war to oust Saddam Hussein based on "lies or misinterpretations". The 2002 Nobel peace prize winner said Mr Blair had allowed his better judgment to be swayed by Mr Bush's desire to finish a war that his father had started.

His latest comments, made during an interview at the Carter Center in Atlanta, are notable for their condemnation of the two serving leaders. It is extremely rare for a former US president to criticize an incumbent, or a British prime minister.(more)

Fog of War Still Hasn't Lifted
by Antonia Zerbisias

"For a brief time the United States ceased to be a democracy and became a propaganda state. Effectively, democracy was overwhelmed by managed discourse, by managed speech . . . the media did not play the role of checking and balancing the exercise of power that the standard theory of democracy requires." (more)

The Consequences of Bush's War
by Patrick J. Buchanan

(Patrick J. Buchanan was twice a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination and the Reform Party's candidate in 2000. He is also a founder and editor of the new magazine, The American Conservative. Now a commentator and columnist, he served three presidents in the White House, was a founding panelist of three national television shows, and is the author of seven books.)

It was a war of choice, "Mr. Bush's War," as the War of 1812 was "Mr. Madison's War," the Mexican War was "Jimmy Polk's War" and World War I was "Mr. Wilson's War." Neoconservatives who schemed for a decade to have us invade, occupy and vassalize Iraq say we liberated the country from tyranny, blew a hole in the phalanx of hostile Islamic states and are building a democracy that will be an inspiration to the Middle East. Better still, we are positioned to use our power against Syria, Iran and Saudi Arabia in the war against Islamo-fascism that is the great cause of our generation. (more)

A Few Handy Phrases for Americans Travelling in the Middle East

1. FASHAL-EH TUPEHMAN NA DEGAT MANO GOFTAM CHEESHAYEH MOHEMA RAJEBEH KESHAVAREHMAN (If you will do me the kindness of not harming my genital appendages I will gladly reciprocate by betraying my country in public.)

2. SHOMAEH FIKR TAMOMEH GEH GOFTEK BANDE (I agree with everything you have ever said or thought in your life.)

3. MATERNIER GHERMEZ AHLIEH, GORBAN (The red blindfold would be lovely, excellency.)

4. TIKEH NUNEH BA OB KHRELEH BEZORG VA KHRUBE GOYAST INO BERGERAM (The water-soaked bread crumbs are delicious, thank you. I must have the recipe.)

5. BA BODENEH SHEERELL TEEGZ (Truly, I would rather be a hostage to your greatly esteemed self than to spend a fortnight upon the person of Cheryl Tiegs.)

June 30, 2004! The Coming Implosion of the American Empire
by Gary North

The American Empire is scheduled to depart from Iraq in June. The unofficial word is out in Washington: Karl Rove has told President Bush that the body count, however much reduced by strange definitions of what constitutes a battlefield death, is going to cost him the election if it continues through the summer. Dutifully, the Commander-in-Chief has announced a June deadline for the transfer of Iraq's sovereignty to "the Iraqis," meaning whichever remnants of the coalition of the suppressed will still officially deal with him on his terms. (more)

Operation Northwoods

U.S. Military Drafted Plans to Terrorize U.S. Cities to Provoke War With Cuba
By David Ruppe

In the early 1960s, America's top military leaders reportedly drafted plans to kill innocent people and commit acts of terrorism in U.S. cities to create public support for a war against Cuba.

Code named Operation Northwoods, the plans reportedly included the possible assassination of Cuban émigrés, sinking boats of Cuban refugees on the high seas, hijacking planes, blowing up a U.S. ship, and even orchestrating violent terrorism in U.S. cities.

The plans were developed as ways to trick the American public and the international community into supporting a war to oust Cuba's then new leader, communist Fidel Castro.

America's top military brass even contemplated causing U.S. military casualties, writing: "We could blow up a U.S. ship in Guantanamo Bay and blame Cuba," and, "casualty lists in U.S. newspapers would cause a helpful wave of national indignation."

Details of the plans are described in Body of Secrets (Doubleday), a new book by investigative reporter James Bamford about the history of America's largest spy agency, the National Security Agency. However, the plans were not connected to the agency, he notes.

The plans had the written approval of all of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and were presented to President Kennedy's defense secretary, Robert McNamara, in March 1962. But they apparently were rejected by the civilian leadership and have gone undisclosed for nearly 40 years.(more)

US tried to plant WMDs, failed: whistleblower

According to a stunning report posted by a retired Navy Lt Commander and 28-year veteran of the Defense Department (DoD), the Bush administration's assurance about finding weapons of mass destruction in Iraq was based on a Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) plan to "plant" WMDs inside the country. Nelda Rogers, the Pentagon whistleblower, claims the plan failed when the secret mission was mistakenly taken out by "friendly fire", the Environmentalists Against War report. Nelda Rogers is a 28-year veteran debriefer for the DoD. She has become so concerned for her safety that she decided to tell the story about this latest CIA-military fiasco in Iraq. According to Al Martin Raw.com, "Ms Rogers is number two in the chain of command within this DoD special intelligence office. This is a ten-person debriefing unit within the central debriefing office for the Department of Defense." (more)

Marriage and Civic Equality
by John Buell
President Bush tells us that marriage between a man and a woman is a pillar of our civilisation. Yet long before same-sex marriage debates, who could marry and what marriage meant were contested. Slaves could not marry. For many years interracial marriage was illegal. And if marriage has been a bulwark of our civilisation, that civilisation has struggled for gender equality. Women had to fight for the right to divorce, and coercive sex within a marriage was not treated as rape. (more)

US Business Group Slams Bush 'Deception' Over Iraq War

NEW YORK - A US business group that monitors federal spending took out a full-page advert in The New York Times, likening President George W. Bush to a corrupt chief executive officer who has forfeited public trust. Timed to coincide with the weekend anniversary of the US-led war against Iraq, the advertisement -- paid for by Business Leaders for Sensible Priorities -- said Bush's case for invasion "was built entirely out of falsehoods." Highlighting the cost of the war in terms of hundreds of US casualties and tens of billions of dollars, the ad said the "state-sponsored deception" underpinning the conflict dwarfed the damage caused by the series of corporate scandals that recently rocked Wall Street. "It's past time for finger pointing," it said. "It's time for someone in this government to step forward and take personal responsibility for the deadly deceptions used to mislead this great nation into war. "And that someone must be George W. Bush." Business Leaders for Sensible Priorities was formed in 1996 on concerns that federal government spending priorities were undermining national security.

The group's 500 members include the present or former CEOs of Bell Industries, Eastman Kodak and Goldman Sachs, as well as CNN founder Ted Turner. (more)

Death of a Patriot
Bob Fitrakis
The Free Press

America's most influential advocate of a verified voting paper trail in the era of touch screen computer voting, Athan Gibbs, an accountant for more than 30 years and the inventor of the TruVote system, died when his vehicle collided with an 18-wheeled truck which rolled his Chevy Blazer several times and forced it over the highway retaining wall where it came to rest on its roof.
. . . Gibbs' death bears heightened scrutiny because of the way he lived his life after the 2000 Florida election debacle. I interviewed Athan Gibbs in January of this year. "I've been an accountant, an auditor, for more than thirty years. Electronic voting machines that don't supply a paper trail go against every principle of accounting and auditing that's being taught in American business schools," he insisted. "These machines are set up to provide paper trails. No business in America would buy a machine that didn't provide a paper trail to audit and verify its transaction. Now, they want the people to purchase machines that you can't audit? It's absurd."(more)



Feel The Burn

(Reuters) - Flamboyant fitness guru Richard Simmons was cited by authorities for allegedly slapping a man in an airport who was poking fun at his exercise videos, police said Thursday. Simmons, 55, known for his tank tops, curly hair and exuberant demeanor, was ticketed for misdemeanor assault after allegedly striking the man across the face while in line at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport on Wednesday night, police said. "He apparently said, 'Hey everybody, it's Richard Simmons, let's drop our bags and rock to the '50s,"' said Sgt. Lauri Williams, a reference to a series of Simmons's well-known videos. "Mr. Simmons took offense and said he had to 'bitch slap' him." The victim, whose name was not immediately available, was described by police as a burly man known to compete in the spectator sport of cage fighting, otherwise known as mixed martial arts. He told authorities that he wanted to press charges against Simmons. Police said Simmons cooperated fully with officers at the scene and later was allowed to board a plan to Los Angeles.

Light Bulb Jokes

"When the Paris Exhibition closes, electric light will close with it and no more be heard of."

Erasmus Wilson (1878) Professor at Oxford University

How many dyslexics does it change to take a light bulb? Eno.

How many mystery writers does it take to change a light bulb? Two. One to screw the bulb almost all the way in, and one to give a surprising twist at the end.

How many Microsoft engineers does it take to change a light bulb? None, they merely change the standard to darkness and then they upgrade the customers.

How many paranoids does it take to change a light bulb? WHO WANTS TO KNOW?

How many tax agents does it take to screw in a light bulb? Only one, but it really gets screwed.

(And my personal favourite:)

One. How many psychics does it take to change a light bulb?

Bad Literature

"I'd stumbled onto solving my first murder case, having found myself the only eyewitness, yet no matter how frantically I pleaded with John Law that the perp was right in front of them and the very dame they'd been grilling - the sultry but devious Miss Kitwinkle, who played the grieving patsy the way a concert pianist player plays a piano - the cops just kept smiling and stuffing crackers in my beak. "(Thanks to Chris Esco)

"He knew that, at most, he had five seconds left to live, one one-thousand, two one-thousand, the gun barrel pointing at his face like a scolding finger, three Mississippi, four Mississippi, the hired assassin Ricardo's grip tightening on the trigger, five white elephants, six white elephants, and then a bright blast of light as he wondered which was really the most accurate way to count five seconds." (Thanks to Vincent M. Zito)

Children's Books You'll NEVER See

"Dad's New Wife Robert"
"The Boy Who Died From Eating All His Vegetables"
"The Magic World Inside the Abandoned Refrigerator"
"Your Nightmares Are Real"
"Why Can't Mr. Fork and Ms. Electrical Outlet Be Friends?"
"Strangers Have the Best Candy"
"Controlling the Playground: Respect through Fear"



A variation of the old favourite.

JAJA FASZEROWANE (Stuffed Egg Shells)

'ad praesens ova cras pullis sunt meliora'
(Eggs today are better than chickens tomorrow.)

This dish hails from Poland.

Eggs (2 per person)
2 T. melted Butter
1 T. chopped chives or shallots
salt and pepper

Cook eggs until hard. Cool for easier handling. With very sharp knife cut eggs in half lengthwise.
Remove egg from shell, being careful not to break the shell, and chop fine. Add melted butter, chives, and season. Mix throughly and fill shells. Fry in butter for 10 minutes face down.
Serves 4. (Note: I like to add some chopped fresh red chilli and garlic to the mixture.)
(For my broker, Rob Kolodziej, so he doesn't feel so homesick.)


1 Pig's head, cleaned and tongue removed
1 t 5-spice powder
2 tb Salt
1/2 c Mien See (ground brown bean sauce) or 1/2 cup oyster sauce
1/4 c Bourbon
1 c Honey, combined with
1 c Boiling water

Remove any hair on head by singeing over an open flame or plucking.
Do the same with the pig's head.
(boom boom!) Scrub well (using a vegetable brush) and then sprinkle with salt, rubbing it into the skin. Rinse well with cool water; pat dry. Remove any excess fat. Place head in a colander in the sink and pour a kettle full of boiling water over. Do the same with the pig's head. (boom boom, one more time for mama!) Let cool. Combine the 5-spice powder, salt, bean sauce and bourbon. Slash the meat on underside of head and rub half of the spice mixture into the meat. Rub the remaining spice mixture onto the skin. Place head upright on a rack in a large baking pan. (boom . . . you know the rest.) Bake at 375F for 1 1/2hours. Lower heat to 325F and continue cooking for an additional 2 hours, or until the meat is cooked through, basting the skin well every 30 minutes with the honey-water mixture. Cooking time will depend on the size of the head. Stay humble and it will be ready quicker. (boom boom!) If ears begin to brown too quickly during cooking period, wrap them with foil. Do the same with . . . (all right . . all right . . .) When head is done, remove to platter and garnish with watercress or coriander. Chop head into pieces. (careful not to misunderstand this part . . . boom boom!) Serve with sweet vegetable relish or plum sauce, spiced salt, Chinese mustard and minced green onions.

Note: Vegetarians can leave head whole and put an organically grown apple in the mouth. You can do the same for the pig - (boom booooooooooom!! ha ha! Get outta here!)


"Trying to determine what is going on in the world by reading newspapers is like trying to tell the time by watching the second hand of a clock."
Ben Hecht (1893-1964)

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