April 2nd, 2007

Chris Keeley

Free Press: reproductions of underground papers, 1965-75

Free Press: reproductions of underground papers, 1965-75

Jean-Francois Bizot's book "Free Press: Underground and Alternative Publications, 1965-1975" is a gorgeous history of the paleozines, the underground newspapers spawned by 1960s subculture. The book is huge, so that many of the tabloid pages it reproduces can be shown at full size (as with the full-size reproductions of the Little Nemo strips, it rapidly becomes clear that if you haven't seen these at full-size, you haven't seen them at all).

The book groups its coverage thematically, starting with freak-out lifestyle papers, then militant publications, black power, the birth of the green movement and the proto-punk era. Most of the pages are given over to images, raw pasteups from the pre-desktop-publishing era, but the text really shines, vigorous and angry or funny or sexy, an unfiltered scream.

I've been paging through this book all day. I keep setting it aside and then returning to it. It's spectacular. I just wish the publisher was doing a better job of promoting it. They don't even have the right cover online (the cover shown here isn't the one my copy has) -- and this book really needs to have some of the interiors online as well. Link

See also Posters from Black Panther newspaper covers: 1969-1971 

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0789314967/downandoutint-20

Chris Keeley

Joey Skaggs launches Art of the Prank

Joey Skaggs launches Art of the Prank

For more than four decades, prankster artist Joey Skaggs has been tweaking the media, thumbing his nose at the bourgeoisie, making fun of The Man, and performing random acts of sensible mockery around the globe. With a resume that boasts such brilliant gags as a "Cathouse for Dogs" (1976) that landed him on ABC News, a 1992 lottery with a first prize of renaming rights to the Brooklyn Bridge, and Final Curtain (2000), a funeral company enabling artists to create their own tombs and memorial exhibitions before they die, to dozens of other hoaxes and pranks, Joey is the quintessential culture jammer and reality hacker.
Artpranklogo
Today, April Fools' Day (natch!), Joey launched Pranks.com, home to the new group blog "Art of the Prank" with contributions from such tricksters, luminaries, and jokers as the Rev. Al, Ron English, Nancy Weber, and V. Vale. Congratulations, Joey, from your pals at Boing Boing! This morning, Joey took time to answer a few of my questions just as New York City's 22nd Annual April Fools' Day Parade,
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Link to Pranks.com

http://pranks.com/
Chris Keeley

The Next Crusade

The Next Crusade

Paul Wolfowitz at the World Bank.

by John Cassidy April 9, 2007

Most bank staff opposed Wolfowitz’s presidency. An observer says that there’s a perception that “his real agenda remains hidden.”

Most bank staff opposed Wolfowitz’s presidency. An observer says that there’s a perception that “his real agenda remains hidden.”

The Selimiye Mosque, in Edirne, a city in northwest Turkey, is a magnificent stone edifice, with four minarets and an austere, octagonal-shaped body supporting a large dome. Built for Sultan Selim II in the sixteenth century, it has withstood numerous earthquakes and can accommodate more than five thousand kneeling worshippers. One evening at the end of January, I visited the mosque with Paul Wolfowitz, the president of the World Bank, and a half dozen of his aides and colleagues. Two years have passed since President Bush nominated Wolfowitz, the former Deputy Secretary of Defense and one of the architects of the war in Iraq, to head the sprawling multinational lending institution that has as its official goal “a world without poverty.”

The World Bank employs thirteen thousand people in more than a hundred countries, and lends about twenty-five billion dollars a year to poor and middle-income nations. When Wolfowitz inspects bank programs, he often visits religious sites and other monuments. At the Selimiye Mosque, a stern-looking young man with a black beard who identified himself as the imam met us at the entrance and invited us inside. After putting on slippers, Wolfowitz entered the mosque and listened as the imam, demonstrating its acoustics, raised the call to Allah.

Wolfowitz has an abiding interest in the Islamic world. His father, Jacob, an eminent mathematician who taught at Columbia and Cornell, was a fervent Zionist, and Wolfowitz’s elder sister, Laura, lives in Israel. Wolfowitz’s critics sometimes portray him as an unquestioning defender of the Israeli government, and yet he has publicly expressed sympathy for the plight of the Palestinians, and some Arab reformers regard him as a friend. Since separating from his wife of more than thirty years, Clare Selgin Wolfowitz, in 2001, he has dated a secular Muslim woman in her fifties, Shaha Ali Riza. A British national from a Libyan family who grew up in Saudi Arabia, Riza is a longtime advocate of democracy in Arab countries.

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Chris Keeley

Ultimately, Riza was seconded to the State Department. To compensate her for the disruption of her c

Ultimately, Riza was seconded to the State Department. To compensate her for the disruption of her career at the bank, she was promoted to the managerial level, and she has received two pay raises, bringing her salary to a hundred and ninety-three thousand dollars—more than Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice makes. “The staff are very upset,” Alison Cave, the chairman of the World Bank Staff Group Association, said, explaining that the raises amounted to special treatment that violated established bank guidelines. Kevin Kellems told me that Wolfowitz had no involvement in Riza’s promotion or pay raises. “All arrangements concerning Shaha Ali Riza were made at the direction of the board of directors,” he said.

Wolfowitz landed at Atatürk International Airport, in Istanbul, at nine in the evening. The World Bank has about twenty projects in Turkey, and advises the government in Ankara on economic policy. Turkey is an example of a middle-income country that is rapidly modernizing and integrating itself into the world economy. It is also a vital Western ally: a stable, moderate Muslim democracy straddling Europe and Asia. “I made my first visit to Turkey in 1976, and it impressed me enormously,” Wolfowitz told a group of local politicians who greeted him at the gate. “Turkey is a very strategic country, which means it has some unpleasant neighbors. It is good to have a stable democracy in such a region.”

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Chris Keeley

Wolfowitz has an abiding interest in the Islamic world. His father, Jacob, an eminent mathematician

Wolfowitz has an abiding interest in the Islamic world. His father, Jacob, an eminent mathematician who taught at Columbia and Cornell, was a fervent Zionist, and Wolfowitz’s elder sister, Laura, lives in Israel. Wolfowitz’s critics sometimes portray him as an unquestioning defender of the Israeli government, and yet he has publicly expressed sympathy for the plight of the Palestinians, and some Arab reformers regard him as a friend. Since separating from his wife of more than thirty years, Clare Selgin Wolfowitz, in 2001, he has dated a secular Muslim woman in her fifties, Shaha Ali Riza. A British national from a Libyan family who grew up in Saudi Arabia, Riza is a longtime advocate of democracy in Arab countries.

Chris Keeley

The incident that prompted the most comment internally involved Shaha Ali Riza. When Wolfowitz was n

The incident that prompted the most comment internally involved Shaha Ali Riza. When Wolfowitz was nominated to the bank presidency, he disclosed his relationship with Riza, who was working in the bank’s Middle East and North Africa (MENA) department. Under the bank’s regulations, spouses or partners are prohibited from supervising one another or from working in the same cone of authority. As president, Wolfowitz oversees a cone of authority encompassing nearly all the bank’s employees, including those in MENA. The board of directors’ ethics committee took the view that Riza should be transferred to a position outside his supervision. Wolfowitz asked that she be allowed to maintain her job at MENA and to work with him as necessary, offering to recuse himself from any decisions concerning her pay and work conditions. “It really gave a bad impression, especially for somebody who was making a big issue of good governance,” a former senior official at the bank said. “The president is supposed to set an example to everybody, and yet here he wanted to have his girlfriend working with him, which is flatly prohibited under bank rules.”

Ultimately, Riza was seconded to the State Department. To compensate her for the disruption of her career at the bank, she was promoted to the managerial level, and she has received two pay raises, bringing her salary to a hundred and ninety-three thousand dollars—more than Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice makes. “The staff are very upset,” Alison Cave, the chairman of the World Bank Staff Group Association, said, explaining that the raises amounted to special treatment that violated established bank guidelines. Kevin Kellems told me that Wolfowitz had no involvement in Riza’s promotion or pay raises. “All arrangements concerning Shaha Ali Riza were made at the direction of the board of directors,” he said.

Chris Keeley

Correction! Interview: John Waterbury, AUB

Arpil 1, 207 7:31

Conversations: An American in Beirut

Posted by Scott MacLeod | Comments (3) | Permalink | Trackbacks (0) |
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When I heard John Waterbury was stepping down as president of the
American University of Beirut, I phoned him to ask how his 10-year
tenure had gone. I was slightly taken aback by Waterbury's gloom when I
asked him how he saw things generally in the Middle East. He offered a
long-term view that was disturbing but certainly thought-provoking.

"I have been working and living in the Middle East since 1959-1960," he
said, "and I have never seen a period in which U.S.-Arab or U.S.-Middle
Eastern relations have been at a lower ebb. What really has discouraged
me and depressed me in this situation is that anything that the U.S.
advocates, even policies that I think in other times would have been
listened to seriously if not respected, are now denounced simply because
they emanate from Washington. The whole democracy agenda is simply
identified with the Bush administration. Democracy advocates can't hold
their heads up. They are immediately accused of trying to carry out the
Bush agenda in the Middle East and somehow being complicit in all
aspects of U.S. policy. Liberalism has kind of disappeared as a force.
It is very hard for a liberal or a democrat to advocate their agenda
without being tarred with the brush of being a lackey of the Bush
administration. The ground is shaking under their feet.

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