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Ojai Orange | The Column of Lasting Insignificance | Books | Wait-A-Minute

November 8, 2008
John Wilcock - January 5, 2008

 

  The column of lasting insignificance
     


also posted:



2011
November 26 2011
November 19, 2011
November 12, 2011
November 5, 2011
October 29, 2011
October 22, 2011
October 15, 2011
October 8, 2011
October 1, 2011
September 24, 2011
September 17, 2011
September 10, 2011
September 4, 2011
August 27, 2011
August 20, 2011
August 13, 2011
August 6, 2011
July 30, 2011
July 23, 2011
July 16, 2011
July 9, 2011
July 2, 2011
June 25, 2011
June 18, 2011
June 11, 2011
June 4, 2011
May 28, 2011
May 21, 2011
May 14, 2011
May 7, 2011
April 30, 2011
April 23, 2011
April 16, 2011
April 9, 2011
April 2, 2011
March 26, 2011
March 19, 2011
March 12, 2011
March 5, 2011
February 26, 2011
February 19, 2011
February 12, 2011
February 5, 2011
February 5, 2011
January 29, 2011
January 22, 2011
January 15, 2011
January 6, 2011

2010
December 25, 2010
December 18, 2010
December 11, 2010
December 4, 2010
November 27, 2010
November 20, 2010
November 13, 2010
November 6, 2010
October 30, 2010
October 23, 2010
October 16, 2010
October 9, 2010
October 2, 2010
September 25, 2010
September 18, 2010
September 11, 2010
September 4, 2010
August 28, 2010
August 21, 2010
August 14, 2010
August 7, 2010
July 31, 2010
July 24, 2010
July 17, 2010
July 10, 2010
July 3, 2010
June 26, 2010
June 19, 2010
June 12, 2010
June 5, 2010
May 29, 2010
May 22, 2010
May 15, 2010
May 8, 2010
May 1, 2010
April 24, 2010
April 17, 2010
April 10, 2010
April 3, 2010
March 27, 2010
March 20, 2010
March 13, 2010
March 6, 2010
February 27, 2010
February 20, 2010
February 13, 2010
February 6, 2010
January 30, 2010
January 23, 2010
January 16, 2010
January 9, 2010
January 2, 2010

2009
December 26, 2009
December 19, 2009
December 12, 2009
December 5, 2009
November 28, 2009
November 21, 2009
November 14, 2009
November 7, 2009
October 31, 2009
October 24, 2009
October 17, 2009
October 10, 2009
October 3, 2009
September 26, 2009
September 19, 2009
September 12, 2009
September 5, 2009
August 29, 2009
August 22, 2009
August 15, 2009
August 8, 2009
August 1, 2009
July 25, 2009
July 18, 2009
July 11, 2009
July 4, 2009
June 27, 2009
June 20, 2009
June 13, 2009
June 6, 2009
May 30, 2009
May 23, 2009
May 16, 2009
May 9, 2009
May 2, 2009
April 25, 2009
April 18, 2009
April 11, 2009
April 4, 2009
March 28, 2009
March 21, 2009
March 14, 2009
March 7, 2009
February 28, 2009
February 21, 2009
February 14, 2009
February 7, 2009
January 31, 2009
January 24, 2009
January 17, 2009
January 3, 2009

2008
December 27, 2008
December 20, 2008
December 13, 2008
December 6, 2008
November 29, 2008
November 22, 2008
November 15, 2008
November 8, 2008
November 5, 2008
November 1, 2008
October 25, 2008
October 18, 2008
October 11, 2008
October 4, 2008
September 27, 2008
September 20, 2008
September 13, 2008
September 6, 2008
August 30, 2008
August 23, 2008
August 16, 2008
August 9, 2008
August 2, 2008
July 26, 2008
July 19, 2008
July 12, 2008
July 5, 2008
June 28, 2008
June 21, 2008
June 14, 2008
June 7, 2008
May 31, 2008
May 24, 2008
May 17, 2008
May 10, 2008
May 3, 2008
April 26, 2008
April 19, 2008
April 12, 2008
April 5, 2008
March 29, 2008
March 22, 2008
March 15, 2008
March 8, 2008
March 1, 2008
February 23, 2008
February 16, 2008
February 9, 2008
February 2, 2008
January 26, 2008
January 19, 2008
January 12, 2008
January 5, 2008

2007
December 29, 2007
December 22, 2007
December 15, 2007
December 8, 2007
December 1, 2007
November 24, 2007
November 17, 2007
November 10, 2007
November 3, 2007
October 27, 2007
October 20, 2007
October 13, 2007
October 6, 2007
September 29, 2007
September 22, 2007
September 15, 2007
September 8, 2007
September 1, 2007
August 25, 2007
August 18, 2007
August 11, 2007
August 4, 2007
July 28, 2007
July 21, 2007
July 14, 2007
July 7, 2007
June 30, 2007
June 23, 2007
June 16, 2007
June 9, 2007
June 2, 2007
May 19, 2007
May 12, 2007
May 5, 2007
April 28, 2007
April 21, 2007
April 14, 2007
April 7, 2007
March 31, 2007
March 24, 2007
March 17, 2007
March 10, 2007
March 3, 2007
February 24, 2007
February 17, 2007
February 10, 2007
February 3, 2007
January 20, 2007
January 13, 2007
January 6, 2007

2006
December 30, 2006
December 23, 2006
December 16, 2006
December 9, 2006
December 2, 2006
November 25, 2006
November 18, 2006
November 11, 2006
November 4, 2006
October 28, 2006
October 21, 2006
October 14, 2006
October 7, 2006
September 30, 2006
September 23, 2006
September 16, 2006
September 9, 2006
September 2, 2006
August 26, 2006
August 19, 2006
August 12, 2006
August 5, 2006
July 29, 2006
July 22, 2006
July 15, 2006

 

 



November 8, 2008

Under every stone, lurks a politician -- Aristophanes (450-385BC)

NOVELIST ALEXANDER BESHER launched his new book last week via the barcode on a T-shirt. By pointing a cell phone at the barcode, the potential reader can download The Manga Man  right onto his phone, formatted and ready to read in small bites. The book,  subtitled "a novel set in the neuro future", follows Besher's Rim Trilog--hailed as pioneers in the world of contemporary science fiction, and which, among other things, predicted by many years the kind of scenario which eventually became Second Life. The bar-code book includes Butoh dance performances and accompanying commentary about post-Zen Japanese philosophy. Besher and his partners plan to develop this into a meta-multimedia publishing venture named Barcodelit.com

WITH WORLD FOOD PRICES having jumped 83% in the past two years, there have already been food riots in 30 countries, including one in Haiti which brought down the prime minister. "To the typical household in four countries, food is the equivalent of energy in the U.S.", writes Paul Collier in Foreign Affairs. And, in some households it can consume half of the family budget, five times the norm in high-income countries. "Global food prices must be brought down fast (or) the consequences will be grim, both ethically and politically, Collier forecasts. (Revolution is brewing! -ed.)

THE BETTER BUSINESS BUREAU, it seems, may not be the best recipient of your complaints about firms with which it is affiliated. "Companies pay between a few hundred dollars and $10,000 to be an accredited BBB member" reports Smart Money, "and some see a conflict of interest....And, say some critics, both its complaint process, and those famed reliability reports are designed (in an atmosphere of) pro-business". Almost half the mission firms are members of the BBB, which fields more than twice that many consumer grievances each year. Sometimes the online complaint forms are passed onto the firms themselves (Cingular, for example, paid the Bureau $50,000 for such information) and often the matter is resolved merely by the company responding, regardless whether action was taken or not. In response, the BBB claims it has to "take care of business first" and if it didn't, it would have to charge consumers for the service.

OVER-PROTECTIVE MOMS AND DADS who hover over their children constantly even when they go to college were tagged "helicopter parents" in a Guardian story. Constantly bugging college authorities with questions, some admitted to calling their offspring several times a day well into their twenties, and Huddersfield University in England has found it necessary to reassure parents by setting up a "family liasion officer", available 24/7. This "infantilization" is even worse in the U.S. says Donna Miller, director of a car rental firm, who reports that some parents even accompany their kids to job interviews asking questions like: "What will they be doing? Can you explain the benefits?"

BRITAIN WAS DESCRIBED as the shoplifting center of Europe in a recent Daily Telegraph story which estimated that stealing from stores had become a $2.5 billion dollar business. Eight-member teams were identified as hitting the motorways to visit town after town, where a typical raid might last under six minutes but yield more than $4,000-worth of goods. Watching these raids on security videotapes later. said one police officer,  "is like watching a skilled piece of choreography".

THE WILCOCK WEB: The difference between a president in denial and a president-denied? One's a flustered Bush, the other a busted flush….With Sarah Palin's autobiography presumably less in demand by publishers, how long before Larry Flynt now offers her a couple of mill for a nude centerfold?…. Yet another example of the stupidity of choosing machines over a simple pencil and paper, were the six-hour long lines at polling booths where delays were caused by insufficient working machines….Tentatively introducing some tabloid techniques into its new layout suggests that the Los Angeles Times could benefit from transforming itself into becoming a real tabloid….November 13 kicks off LA's week-long "getting-ready-for-the big-one" earthquake drill. Check out shakeout.org for details….The New York Post warned Sarah Jessica Parker, Matthew Broderick, Graydon Carter and Charlie Rose that the garbage cans outside their Washington Square apartment complex were accessible to snoopers after reporting that Weeds'  star Mary-Louise Parker had her trash ravaged and its contents publicized…. Measurably less-popular NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg may have outsmarted himself with his power grab for an extra term, having infuriated enough people to possibly lose his election in 2010….Another of those new words invented in a Washington Post competition: Caterpallor (n.): The color you turn after finding half a worm in the fruit you're eating…."Democracy run amok–the tyranny of the individual's right to pursue his or her own happiness above the community" wrote reviewer Susan Salter Reynolds summarizing Hervé Kemp's How the Rich Are Destroying the Earth….In India, solar-powered rickshaws are appearing among the traffic in Delhi streets….Acting scummily to the end, pretend-prexy George Bush is now spitefully bringing in damaging regulations that the papers say will be hard for his successors to reverse….Only entrepreneurs willing to give away at least $1million in the next year are welcome at this week's Philanthropy Round Table annual gathering at Naples, FL.…. Of all the stupid additions  (apps) available for free downloading to iPhones, the three most popular are a clanking cowbell, a man yelling "wooo!" and the sound of a stapler clicking…."We never really know what stupidity is", wrote Paul Gauguin, "until we have experimented on ourselves"…. Brit artist David Penfound's horse-print T-shirts cost $1,395 from designer Martin Margiela but are said to be available on the Internet for $19.85…. Kids' panties bearing the words "Dive In"  (themed from the movie High School Musical) have been condemned by Britain's National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children after parents objected that they were "inappropriate" for young children…. If you insist too long that you're right, you're wrong --author unknown.

11/5/08

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