blog advertising is good for you

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres

"In September, the U.N. General Assembly will vote on whether to recognize Palestine as an independent and sovereign state with full rights in the United Nations. In many ways, this would appear to be a reasonable and logical step. Whatever the Palestinians once were, they are clearly a nation in the simplest and most important sense — namely, they think of themselves as a nation. Nations are created by historical circumstances, and those circumstances have given rise to a Palestinian nation. Under the principle of the United Nations and the theory of the right to national self-determination, which is the moral foundation of the modern theory of nationalism, a nation has a right to a state, and that state has a place in the family of nations. In this sense, the U.N. vote will be unexceptional. However, when the United Nations votes on Palestinian statehood, it will intersect with other realities and other historical processes. First, it is one thing to declare a Palestinian state; it is quite another thing to create one. The Palestinians are deeply divided between two views of what the Palestinian nation ought to be, a division not easily overcome. Second, this vote will come at a time when two of Israel’s neighbors are coping with their own internal issues. Syria is in chaos, with an extended and significant resistance against the regime having emerged. Meanwhile, Egypt is struggling with internal tension over the fall of President Hosni Mubarak and the future of the military junta that replaced him. Add to this the U.S. withdrawal from Iraq and the potential rise of Iranian power, and the potential recognition of a Palestinian state — while perfectly logical in an abstract sense — becomes an event that can force a regional crisis in the midst of ongoing regional crises." (STRATFOR)

image via NYSocialdiary.com

"Elizabeth Warren’s combative history with Wall Street could create a fundraising dilemma for her burgeoning Senate campaign.  Her ardent grassroots following on the left — forged during stints as TARP watchdog and as mastermind of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau — would likely make her a formidable Senate candidate in Massachusetts.But her reputation as sheriff to Wall Street could also be a liability against Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.), a popular Republican who has been stockpiling campaign cash in anticipation of a tight 2012 race. If Warren runs, she will have to decide whether to court high-rolling donors in the financial services community — an awkward choice both personally and politically, given her carefully crafted image as antagonist to big finance. 'I think it's pretty clear she's going to run the classic, grassroots campaign here in Massachusetts,' said Mary Anne Marsh, a longtime Democratic operative in the state. 'That means she's going to rely on folks here to give low-dollar donations here a number of times.' But without the support of heavy-hitting donors in Massachusetts, many of whom work at hedge funds and other financial firms, Warren might find it difficult to keep up with Brown’s fundraising juggernaut. Dubbed 'Wall Street’s Favorite Congressman' in a Forbes article last year, Brown reported having more than $9.6 million in the bank at the end of June." (TheHill)


"Tarot cards have been in use for more than five hundred years, first in trick-taking card games and, since the late eighteenth century, as aids to fortune-telling and occult divination. The artist Francesco Clemente got interested in them about three years ago. Clemente, born in Naples but a New York resident, off and on, since 1981, studied reproductions of fifteenth-century tarot decks, and delved into the voluminous literature on the subject. 'A friend got me Aleister Crowley’s unpublished notes on the cards,' he said. 'I read Italo Calvino’s wonderful text. I had my own cards read, and I read cards for my friends.” The result of his delving is a series of drawings, one for each of the seventy-eight original tarot cards, but larger (approximately nineteen inches tall by nine and a half inches wide), executed in several different media: watercolor and gouache, ink, pastel, colored pencil. The drawings go on view next month at the Uffizi Gallery, in Florence—not a bad place to be seen, although the locals may draw a blank on some of the visual references. All the figures in the Higher Arcana (the twenty-two trump cards in a tarot deck) and quite a few in the Minor Arcana (ace to ten, plus four face cards) are portraits of Clemente’s New York friends." (NewYorker)

"Early the next morning, a 28-year-old woman named Jennifer Mayer is driving a Subaru from Manhattan over the Brooklyn Bridge with an opaque takeout container in the passenger seat. Inside the container is a gallon-size Ziploc bag, and inside the bag is Jennifer Hughes’s placenta. Mayer—an upbeat, blue-eyed blonde from upstate New York—is a professional placenta-preparer. Her job is to transform placentas into supplements that are said to alleviate postpartum depression, aid in breastmilk production and lactation, act as a uterine tonic, and replenish nutrients lost during pregnancy. Her clients are mostly middle-class, like Hughes and her husband, Doug, who are college-educated, in their thirties, and live on a gentrifying street in Crown Heights. On this dreary April morning, Mayer is driving the afterbirth to their apartment to begin preparing it. 'It’s the freshest placenta I’ve ever worked with!' she says, glancing over at the container as the car lurches through traffic. Mayer speaks about the organ in tones most women reserve for newborns: ­'perfect,' 'beautiful,' 'precious.' Her enthusiasm isn’t unfounded. The placenta feeds the baby until birth, filtering toxins while letting in vitamins, minerals, oxygen, and other nutrients from the mother’s bloodstream. It even helps reduce the risk of transmitting viruses, including HIV, from mother to child. Mayer, who also works as a massage therapist and doula, first became interested in placentas as a student at the University of Colorado. After reading up on the purported benefits of consuming one’s afterbirth and learning that a client was planning to try it, Mayer decided that she wanted to offer her customers placenta capsules: dried, ground afterbirth packaged into a clear pill no bigger than a regular vitamin supplement." (NYMag)


"'The Taliban no longer own the districts around Kandahar city,' Petraeus told me a few weeks ago. 'They've had to move much farther from population centers ... to stage their operations,' which are most often individual attacks on Afghan government officials and facilities. This is significant, if iffy, progress. Petraeus said his forces are now trying to solidify those gains, training local police and militias, trying to build governance from the bottom up (rather than down from the corrupt top in Kabul). But there is real trouble in the east, where the Haqqani Taliban network, which gets direct support from Pakistan, still can launch aggressive small-unit operations against U.S. forces. The general said he hoped to make a major push in the east starting this fall. That may still happen, but not at the strength Petraeus — who will leave Afghanistan this July — had hoped." (Joe Klein)

1 comment:

sex shop woman said...

The dude is completely just, and there is no skepticism.