October 13th, 2006

Chris Keeley

Colin Powell's most significant moment turned out to be his

Colin Powell's most significant moment turned out to be his
lowest

*WASHINGTON POST MAGAZINE  -- OCTOBER 1, 2006*

*Falling on His Sword*
Colin Powell's most significant moment turned out to be his lowest

*BY KAREN DEYOUNG -*   /This article is excerpted from Soldier: The Life
of Colin Powell/

ON WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 10, 2004, eight days after the president he
served was elected to a second term, Secretary of State Colin Powell
received a telephone call from the White House at his State Department
office. The caller was not President Bush but Chief of Staff Andrew
Card, and he got right to the point.

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Chris Keeley

Nobel Peace Prize for 2006, divided into two equal parts, to Muhammad Yunus and Grameen Bank for the

Nobel Peace Prize for 2006, divided into two equal parts, to Muhammad Yunus and Grameen Bank for their efforts to create economic and social development from below

Muhammad Yunus Awarded Nobel Peace Prize
And finally, the Nobel Peace Prize was announced earlier today.

    Ole Danbolt Mjøs: The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided to award the Nobel Peace Prize for 2006, divided into two equal parts, to Muhammad Yunus and Grameen Bank for their efforts to create economic and social development from below. Lasting peace can not be achieved unless large population groups find ways in which to break out of poverty. Micro-credit is one such means.
Chris Keeley

ridiculous list of rock band name origins, both real and rumored

combining Zig Zag and Top, two well known brands of "cigarette" rolling papers. 

http://library.thinkquest.org/4626/rock.htm

Rock band name origins

Monsieur Coop points to a fun and ridiculous list of rock band name origins, both real and rumored. From the list:
AC/DC - 1) It is said that one of the band member saw it on an appliance and thought it had something to do with power. (It does mean "alternating current / direct current".) The band used it not realizing it was also slang for a bisexual- the band claims NOT to be bisexual. 2) In the vogue of other anti-everything bands it stands for Against Christ/Devil's Children.

ALICE IN CHAINS - a funny rumor is that they were named after a lost episode from The Brady Bunch series!...

CHUMBAWAMBA - In a band member's dream, he didn't know which door to use in a public toilet because the signs said "Chumba" and "Wamba" instead of "Men" and "Women"...

JETHRO TULL - popular 70's band that is named after the rather obscure inventor of the farmer's seed drill...

JUDAS PRIEST - originally a mild curse said to avoid saying "Jesus Christ" - also from the Bob Dylan song "The ballad of Frankie Lee and Judas Priest"...

T PAU - after a high priestess from the planet VULCAN in the American TV series STAR TREK...

YO LA TENGO -translates to "I have it" from Spanish - said to be the phrase called out by Hispanic baseball players when fielding a pop fly ball. Singer/guitar player Ira Kaplan got the expression from a book he was reading about baseball called The Five Seasons.

ZZ TOP - taken from the name of a Texas Blues man ZZ Hill. Though a rumor is that they got their name by combining Zig Zag and Top, two well known brands of "cigarette" rolling papers.
Link 

http://library.thinkquest.org/4626/rock.htm
Chris Keeley

The Société Anonyme

The Société Anonyme 



The Société Anonyme: Modernism for America

El Lissitzky... Victory Over The Sun - The Machinery (1923, color lithograph, estate of Katherine S. Dreier). From The Société Anonyme: Modernism for America. "...This stunning array of approximately 130 rarely seen works by major 20th-century avant-garde artists, including Constantin Brancusi, Marcel Duchamp, Max Ernst, Wassily Kandinsky, Piet Mondrian, and Man Ray, were crucial to the emergence of modern art in America. The works, from Katherine Dreier’s Société Anonyme Collection of Yale University Art Gallery and those Dreier bequeathed to The Phillips Collection, include key modernist masterpieces such as Joseph Stella’s Brooklyn Bridge and Franz Marc’s Deer in the Forest I." Also... Man Ray... Manikins (1924, Rayograph). From The Société Anonyme at the UCLA Hammer Museum

http://www.hammer.ucla.edu/exhibitions/100/works_1.htm
Chris Keeley

Chas Freeman's Address to USIA Alumni 10/4/06

Chas Freeman's Address to USIA Alumni 10/4/06

Why Not Let Them Hate Us, as long as They Fear Us?

Remarks to the United States Information Agency Alumni Association
October 4, 2006 in Washington, DC
Chas W. Freeman, Jr.
Ambassador (USFS, Ret.)

We are gathered together to reflect upon our country's adoption of
Caligula's motto for effective foreign policy - ODERINT DUM METUANT -
"let them hate us, as long as they fear us." As we do so, let us observe
a brief moment of silence for the United States Information Agency and
also for our republic, both of which long stood for a different approach.

Most of you devoted your many years of public service to USIA. I served
with the agency twice, once abroad and once at home. I am proud to have
been able to join you in making the case for America. I wish to honor
and thank you for your service to our country in a time of great peril.
Although most of my career was associated with the Department of State,
I confess to sadness when the agency was subjected to euthanasia in 1999.

Americans began our independence with an act of public diplomacy, an
appeal for international support, based upon a "decent regard to the
opinion of mankind." But, 243 years later, we convinced ourselves that -
inasmuch as we had won decisive victories over totalitarianism and
tyranny and democracy and the rule of law faced no serious counter
arguments anywhere - our history had been fulfilled, and the requirement
to explain ourselves to others had ended.

I guess we forgot Dean Rusk's famous insight that "at any moment of the
day or night, two thirds of the world's people are awake, and some of
them are up to no good." Still, the notion that there was a lessened
need for public diplomacy wasn't as foolish as you and other veteran
public servants judged at the time. Nor was it as obvious as many others
now agree it was.

No country was then more widely admired or emulated than ours. The
superior features of our society - our insistence on individual liberty
under law; the equality of opportunity we had finally extended to all;
the egalitarianism of our prosperity; our openness to ideas, change, and
visitors; our generous attention to the development of other nations;
our sacrifices to defend small states against larger predators both in
the Cold War and, most recently, in the war to liberate Kuwait; our
championship of international order and the institutions we had created
to maintain it after World War II; the vigor of our democracy and our
dedication to untrammeled debate - were recognized throughout the world.
Critics of our past misadventures, as in Vietnam, had been silenced by
the spectacle of our demonstrable success. This, our political betters
judged, made the effort to explain ourselves, our purposes, and our
policies through public diplomacy an unnecessary anachronism. The spread
of global media and the internet, many believed, made official
information and cultural programs irrelevant.

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Chris Keeley

“Catch a Fire” is written by Shawn Slovo who is the daughter of the legendary anti-apartheid activis

Catch a Fire” is written by Shawn Slovo who is the daughter of the legendary anti-apartheid activists - Joe Slovo and Ruth First. Joe Slovo was one of the founders of Umkhonto we Sizwe - or MK - which was the armed wing of the African National Congress. He was general secretary of the South African Communist Party during the 1980s. 

“Catch a Fire”: New Film Depicts Life of South African Freedom Fighter Patrick Chamusso

Friday, October 13th, 2006

http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=06/10/13/1359229

Academy Award-winning actor Tim Robbins joins us to talk about his new film, “Catch a Fire.” The movie tells the story of black South African freedom-fighter Patrick Chamusso. It depicts life under apartheid rule – a regime where torture and indefinite detention were commonplace for most of the population and the label terrorist was applied to those seeking to end apartheid and bring democracy to the country. We’re also joined by the film’s producer, Robyn Slovo, the the daughter of anti-apartheid activists Ruth First and Joe Slovo. [includes rush transcript]

 


Torture... Terrorism... Indefinite detention... These are phrases that have become common post 9-11. Well, today we take a look at a new film about South Africa under apartheid rule – a regime where torture and indefinite detention were commonplace for most of the population and the label terrorist was applied to those seeking to end apartheid and bring democracy to the country. The film is called “Catch a Fire”, and it tells the story of black South African freedom-fighter - Patrick Chamusso.

Patrick was a foreman at the Secunda oil refinery, which was a symbol of South Africa’s economic might at a time when the world was protesting the country’s apartheid system. Patrick leaves his job and family to join up with the African National Congress and becomes a rebel fighter and political operative. Patrick eventually plans a crucial strike against Secunda.

“Catch a Fire” is written by Shawn Slovo who is the daughter of the legendary anti-apartheid activists - Joe Slovo and Ruth First. Joe Slovo was one of the founders of Umkhonto we Sizwe - or MK - which was the armed wing of the African National Congress. He was general secretary of the South African Communist Party during the 1980s.

  • Tim Robbins. Academy Award winning actor, writer and prodcuer. He won an oscar for his performance in Mystic River.
  • Robyn Slovo. She is the producer of "Catch a Fire" and the daughter of anti-apartheid activists Ruth First and Joe Slovo.
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Chris Keeley

Francis Bacon on Peter Beard’s photographs

The most poignant are the ones of decomposing elephants where, over time, as they disintegrate, the bones form magnificent sculpture—sculpture which is not just abstract form but has all the memory traces of life, despair and futility. — Francis Bacon on Peter Beard’s photographs



Photographer, collector, diarist, and writer of books Peter Beard has fashioned his life into a work of art; the illustrated diaries he kept from a young age evolved into a serious career as an artist and earned him a central position in the international art world. He was painted by Francis Bacon, painted on by Salvador Dalí, and made diaries with Andy Warhol; he toured with Truman Capote and the Rolling Stones, created books with Jacqueline Onassis and Mick Jagger—all of whom are brought to life, literally and figuratively, in his work. As a fashion photographer, he took Vogue stars like Veruschka to Africa and brought new ones—most notably Iman—back to the U.S. with him.

His love affair with natural history and wildlife, which informs most of his work, began when he was a teenager. He had read the books of Isak Dinesen (Karen Blixen) and after spending time in Kenya and befriending the author, bought a piece of land near hers. It was the early 1960s and the big game hunters led safaris, with all the colonial elements Beard had read about in Out of Africa characterizing the open life and landscape, but the times were changing. Beard witnessed the dawn of Kenya’s population explosion, which challenged finite resources and stressed animal populations—including the starving elephants of Tsavo, dying by the tens of thousands in a wasteland of eaten trees. So he documented what he saw—with diaries, photographs, and collages. He went against the wind in publishing unique and sometimes shocking books of these works. The corpses were laid bare; the facts were carefully written down sometimes in type, often by hand, occasionally with blood.

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Chris Keeley

peter beard

Peter Beard: Scrapbooks From Africa and Beyond is a colorful and definitive portrait of a man of all seasons, a man in love with people and places, a passionate man, an obsessed man constantly passing from one dimension to another. The book and film follow the inner drama of one of the great creative spirits. Like the colorful marginalia of the notebooks he’s kept since his youth, it is collage drawn from life itself. Scrapbooks From Africa and Beyond reveals a mixture of seriousness and wit, and rests upon Peter Beard’s skills as a storyteller. A person cannot experience the intensity of life such as Beard has—suffer such scrapes and bruises associated with the adventurer’s life—without being lively company. A series of incisive and never before published interviews by British journalist Edward Behr form the backbone of Scrapbooks From Africa and Beyond that takes viewers to three continents. Beard lives in the present and here we are offered a rare experience to observe how he captures the essence of each moment. Marked by a sense of intimacy and sincerity, Scrapbooks From Africa and Beyond shows Beard at work shooting nudes and fashion, with his family and friends, the native Kenyans he lived near and works with or just one-on-one, in candid and revealing scenes that underscore his life’s work. In Scrapbooks From Africa and Beyond, Beard’s adventures and the substance of his work are united as one. The iconic photographs of his legendary past are revisited and for the first time we read and hear the stories about the making of Beard’s first book End of the Game, his appearance in the underground classic, "Hallelujah the Hills," his fortuitous meeting with British painter, Francis Bacon, and his youthful acquaintance with Karen Blixen. Beard’s epic notebooks, bound with ink, blood, photographs and the detritus of life on the road are matched here by his recollections of the remnants of Kenya’s colonial past.

Scrapbooks From Africa and Beyond establishes the context in which Peter Beard came to Kenya and made his home there. On Lake Rudolph, the world’s largest desert lake, Beard tells us of the months he spent there studying crocodiles as a young man. At Hog Ranch, in the suburbs of Nairobi, viewers see how Beard lives with his pictures, paintings, friends and animals. In the United States, Beard walks the streets of Manhattan in a blazer, sari and sandals, hardly recognizing his city, telling us why he desired another place. On the beaches of Montauk, he reminiscences about the decadent 1970s, Warhol, the Factory and Pop Art. The photographs shown and described in Scrapbooks From Africa and Beyond record Beard’s milieu, the eras he survived, as well as the bygone past which drew him to the "dark continent" in the first place. Film narrated by award-winning actress, Charlotte Rampling, with rare footage of Francis Bacon, Jonas Mekas, Andy Warhol, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, John F. Kennedy, Jr. and Mick Jagger among numerous others. "The merit of Scrapbooks From Africa and Beyond is to show the real Peter Beard. The legend is almost perfect"- Libération