Key Posts Category
THe 2013 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Photography is won by Rodrigo Abd, Narciso Contreras, Khalil Hamra, Manu Brabo and Muhammed Muheisen, all of the Associated Press, for “their compelling coverage of the civil war in Syria”. Photojournalism does not get better than this:
Injured men are carried to a hospital during fierce fighting between Free Syrian Army fighters and government troops in Idlib, north Syria, Saturday, March 10, 2012. U.N. envoy Kofi Annan met with Syrian President Bashar Assad on Saturday in Damascus during a high-profile international mission to mediate an end to the country's yearlong conflict. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
YOU can see the photos from the Boston bombings here. We saw the AP’s picture of one man’s injuries. Not every publication thought it too much. You can see our cropped version of the man as he’s helped by first repsonders and Carlos Arredono.
And now some good news. Well, better news. The man was rushed to the Boston Medical Center ER. His name is Jeff Bauman Junior. He’s lost both of his legs. His father, Jeff Bauman Senior, writes:
“Can everyone pray for my son Jeff Jr.? I just can’t explain what’s wrong with people today to do this to people. I’m really starting to lose faith in our country.”
Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers, they did help greatly. Unfortunately my son was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. He had to have both lower limbs removed due to the extensive vascular and bone damage. I was with him last night and am heading back down to Boston – Boston Medical Center to be with him today. He went back into surgery last night at midnight for exploratory due to fluid in his abdomen. He came out at 2:30 and doctors informed us he was doing better. Thanks again to all you guys and girl
You can help Jeff here.
When people say they are praying for someone, it can sound glib. Tony Woodlief helps :
Sometimes I wake up in a hotel bed or my apartment and I forget where I am, what bed this is and what city this is. I shower and sometimes I shave and I mutter sentences that have no meaning because they are not in the right place. They are divorced from all place, these words like I don’t understand this and I can’t do this and Please help me. I mutter these sentences and I stop, the washrag over my face or the blade to my neck, and I wonder where the words came from, and who they are for, and why I am saying them, and if only God understands why we talk to ourselves in the bleary dark morning hours.
Only God understands if they are prayers or laments, and how words can be both, how every sentence spoken out of place is really just another way of saying: Where am I to go?
Heather MacDonald does not believe:
I take it that believers do not ascribe such inconsistent results to capriciousness on God’s part, but rather to their own limited capacities to understand God’s ways: “Thy Will be done.” But why continue directing any psychic energy to a being so lacking in sympathetic correspondence to human needs and values. It will not do to say: “God does respond to our prayers, but in ways that we cannot fathom.” Saving a child from cancer and letting a child die from cancer cannot both be a sympathetic response to prayer; if we had wanted a stricken child to die in order to secure an earlier entry to heaven, we would have said so. And if premature death from cancer is such a boon, why doesn’t a loving God provide it to one and all?
It is humans who work with passion and commitment every day to try to save their fellows (and a range of other creatures) from suffering and sorrow. Emergency room medicine is constantly evolving to try to ensure that gun shot victims and people crushed by cars survive. Doctors and hospital staff work frantically throughout the night to try to revive a failing heart or a shattered brain. They do so out of love and compassion, while God, who could restart an exhausted heart in an instant, demurs. The only source of love on earth is human empathy. Transferring our own admirable traits onto a constructed deity just obscures the real human condition: we are all we have, but that is saying a lot.
If you can’t pray for Jeff Bauman, we can at least contemplate what it means to be him.
The Boston Marathon Bombs were the work of Muslims, the Tea Party, whites, immigrants, Nazis, al-Qaeda, anarchists and the US Government
WHO set off the bombs at the Boston Marathon? Everyone who has an agenda knows:
CNN’s national security analyst Peter Bergen twice suggested that “right-wing extremists” could be behind Monday’s Boston Marathon bombings… Bergen was asked to explain if the bombing could have been an act of terror. Bergen answered in the affirmative, and proceeded to name possible suspects depending on the type of explosive used.
Setting off two bombs at the end of a public race could be an act of terror. Well, he’s the expert:
“I think the actual – the constituency inside the bomb will make a big difference about how we identify the person who did this,” he explained at the end of CNN’s 4 p.m. ET hour of live coverage. The perpetrators “could be a right-wing extremist group.”
IN May 1960, the Pink Pussycat School of Striptease (aka The Navel Academy) opened it doors in Los Angeles. Said school owner and President Harry Schiller in his first baccalaureate: “There are lots of girls who want to strip, but few know how.”
JUSTIN Bieber was once a Nazi SS wartime general, historians say. Experts who saw Bieber sign the visitor book at Anne Frank’s wartime home in Amsterdam - he wrote: “Truly inspiring to be ble to come here. Anne was a great girl. Hopefully she has belieber Would have beens” - believe the singer was once an SS stormtrooper named Helmet Wirth.
Wirth escaped to Paraguay. It is now believed his knowledge of genetics and suitcases full of baby skin and children’s organs enabled him to disguise himself as ‘Justin Bieber’.
“Wirth worked in the aural desensitisation zone at Auschwitz,” explains one historian. “His job was to test sounds to see if they could create non-surgical mass sterilisation. As former chairman of the anatomy department at the Reich University in Strassburgu, Wirth’s experiments on babies enabled him to rise to the upper echelons of the Third Reich.”
Wirth recorded his experiments. He would often sing whilst he worked. Anorak played some of Wirth’s tapes to a group of teenagers. Twelve year-old Jessica Hool from Basildon, was impressed:
“OMG! You can really hear it’s Bieber.”
Holly Jones, added:
“To think that thousands of murdered children were forced to listen to Justin Bieber before they were raped and murdered shows that the Nazis weren’t all bad. My nan had Procol Harem at her funeral. It’s just a matter of taste”
Bieber fan Milly Samson added on twitter: “Ho the fuck is Anne Frank? If that bitch takes my baby maker I’m gonna fuck her up. For shit!”
Hillsborough: In 1981 Tottenham Hotspur not Liverpool fans were the white working-class scum in the cage
IN Liverpool, two memorials to the 96 football fans who died at Hillsborough have gone on display. It was On 15 April 1989 when it happened. Liverpool were playing Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup semi-final. There was a crush of bodies in the Liverpool end. And it got worse. And worse. The fans had nowhere to go. The police would not open the gates to release the pressure. The fans begged them to. The police did nothing. To them, the unfolding human disaster was only about crown control.
As the bodies were being collected, the police, the State and the media colluded to blame the fans. They lied.
BEING buried alive is right up there in the list of things you fear most.
YOUTUBER jethack shows us the Mysterious Swaying Plant. He says it’s creepy. It is. But when I saw it I stated to think of The Vanishing, the Dutch film in which a man is buried alive. Jewthack walks off with his video to post on YouTube. He never digs beneath the wavering plant. And in a box beneath the soil a man with only a stem to breath through, screams…
Presenting the Best Buried Alive Scenes in Film.
The Screaming Woman
The Candy Snatchers
Patrick Stewart played his drug lord role with relish, especially since it is such a change for him recently. From the press packet: With his role as the captain of the starship Enterprise, “I became everything synonymous with honor, intelligence, and rectitude,” he says. “Loomis is a delightful and refreshing alternative to that.” Indeed. In his very first appearance, we see him sitting at an open grave, where he calmly has his wife buried alive.
The Big Carnival
The Serpent and the Rainbow
Tales of Terror
Kill Bill (Vol 2)
A COUPLE have been caught on Google Street View, doing the sex outdoors while the Google car drove by.
Margaret Thatcher and Hillsborough: Her Press Secretary Bernard Ingham’s letter to a ‘disgusted’ Liverpool fan
ANORAK has argued against a minute’s silence at football grounds for Margaret Thatcher. She was no football fan. Her time as Prime Minister coincided with English football’s slide into darkness. The nadir was the Millwall fans rioting at Luton Town. The horrors were at Bradford City (56 dead), Heysel (39) and Hillsborough. Of that last tragedy in which 96 Liverpool fans – adults and children – lost their lives at the FA Cup semi-final, voices poured misinformation into Thatcher’s ear. She was a willing audience to their lies - “One officer, born and bred in Liverpool, said that he was deeply ashamed to say that it was drunken Liverpool fans who had caused this disaster, just as they had caused the deaths at Heysel.”
THE newspapers have written millions of words on Margaret Thatcher. And the writers and owners might all thank her. In the 1991 book Murdoch: The Decline of an Empire, we read of life on Fleet Street back in 1978:
The Times Newspapers management wanted to introduce new technology. This new system would allow advertising employees to take down classified advertisements by putting them directly into the system through electronic keyboards …
The National Graphical Association (NGA), which represented the typesetters, rejected this proposal and called for ‘double key-stroking’; ‘double’ being the operative word …
Copy could be typed by others on the paper, including journalists, but it had to be retyped by NGA members. In the days of hot metal presses this made sense, but the new computer-based technology meant that copy only needed to be ‘single-keyed’, i.e. it could be typed and set straight into the system … [By 1979] the NGA had already established the double key-stroking principle at three other national newspapers.
In Bad News: The Wapping Dispute, the writers note the relationships between journalists and clerical/production workers:
“Traditionally the journalists saw the printers’ practices as an obstacle to getting their stories out and there was a great deal of jealousy because the printers were earning as much, if not more, than they were earning themselves. Their attitude of superiority… was something that many clerical workers experienced in their day to day contact with journalists.”
(The Sunday Times journalists, for example, voted 68-60 to move to Wapping.)
The Times Newspapers group lost more than £39 million during a nearly year-long closure over the issue. When the business – such as it was – re-opened in 1979, it had a new feature: double-keying.
Murdoch wanted change.
He wanted to smash the unions. His Sun newspaper had been firmly against the miners in their strike. (Read how it tuned miners’ union leader Arthur Scargill into Hitler.)
Investing in new technology would mean fewer staff and bigger papers, with full colour and more sections and advertising. He set about building a new printing plant in Wapping, East London. This would be for a new organ called The London News. That title would never exist. It was a ruse to keep the unions from knowing his true intention.
In the USA “New Technology” had made significant inroads, with cold type first introduced as early as 1973 and job losses as high as 50% resulting from the introduction of information technology. In the face of declining readership and intense competition no strike agreements had been widely negotiated to secure a “habit factor” amongst readers. One of the leading suppliers of IT to the newspaper industry with 500 customers and 50% market share was Atex, a subsidiary of Kodak founded in 1973. The systems Atex produced covered everything from layout and word-processing to printing and classified advertisement sales. In the UK most publishers were experimenting to a greater or lesser extent with New Technology but were nervous about the technological risks and the impact on labour relations. Only Eddie Shah with his Today newspaper had tried to use it extensively, with mixed results.
Murdoch determined to purchase technology from Atex, and to employ it in a newspaper plant to be built in Wapping in East London, ostensibly to produce a new newspaper called “The London Post”. The Atex system was developed amidst enormous secrecy, and gave Murdoch the confidence that he could take on the print unions and win. He didn’t so much introduce leading edge production techniques as simply take advantage of widely used technology and practices established in other countries and sectors.
Former Independent editor Andrew Whittam-Smith said of those times of change:
Until 1986 nothing had changed in newspaper publishing, The industry was in a time warp,”. “What Rupert Murdoch did was break the log jam and bring us into the 20th century”.
Where Murdoch led, every other newspaper followed. They all left Fleet Street. They all invested in new print works.
On 16 1986 over 6000 staff striked. At which point they lost their jobs. Members of SOGAT (Society of Graphical and Allied Trades) the NGA (National Graphical Association), the AUEW (Amalgamated Union of Engineering Workers) were out of work. Members of the electricians union, the EETPU, kept the printers running. Murdoch relocated his papers from Fleet Street to those cheaper premises in Wapping, which soon resembled a fortress.
There was violence. The police were very much on Murdoch’s side.
Journalists and printers were bussed in from secret locations and traditional militant rail unions marginalised as Murdoch turned to the road haulage company TNT to run the gauntlet of strikers and get his newspapers out, using articulated lorries (one of which killed a 19-year-old labourer as it was leaving the plant in 1987) and vans known as “white mice”.
Journalists still had to endure the chants of “scab, scab, scab” as they drove into Wapping (and then chants of “cunt, cunt, cunt” from Kelvin MacKenzie, according to Peter Chippendale and Chris Horrie’s book Stick it Up Your Punter), but at least they were protected by the police.
The general secretary of Sogat ’82, Brenda Dean (see lead photo) condemned the violence, as did many other union leaders.
Others were less displeased. This is an extract from one of the last unofficial bulletin’s Picket, which was published 43 times during the strike.
Picket 28th January 1987
For months we have taken stick from the police. On Saturday we got one back. Brilliant. They must’ve wondered what hit them, even the veterans of May 3rd. For hours they had to sit there and take it, the noise of concrete on Perspex deafened us, what must it have been like for them? It was too dangerous for them to charge us as they would have liked. Many thanks to all those people ‘unconnected to the dispute’ who were right up there in the front, showing they know quite well what the police are about and what they deserve from working class people. We need no excuses for hating the police. Thanks especially to the football supporters from Millwall, West Ham, Chelsea and Charlton. You were an inspiration.
Troubled flared. When the strike ended in February 1987, there had been 1,262 arrests and 410 police injuries.
“Scab, scab, scab” the pickets chanted as journalist were bussed in. According to the book Stick it Up Your Punter, Sun editor Kelvin MacKenzie chanted back “c*nt, c*nt, c*nt”.
The print unions’ attempts to gain sympathy for a national boycott of the News International titles .They failed.
In the end, the strike was called off when compensation for sacked staff was arranged.
Murdoch has won. So too had Thatcher.
IN May 1988, Polly Tonybee wrote about Margaret Thatcher in the Washington Monthly. The diatribe was entitled “Is Margaret Thatcher A Woman?”.
Yes, she was. And a mother. But Tonybee wants to present Thatcher as a man, her Spitting Image puppet made flesh.
True enough, Thatcher never gave another women a job at her Cabinet table. But, then, it was her simply being there, Britain’s first female Prime Minister, that makes her a symbol of female emancipation and power. Like her or loathe her, Margaret Thatcher believed she could be Prime Minister. And she made it happen.
WORDS on Margaret Thatcher’s passing will run into the millions. But only STV has the apparent scoop that her son Mark Thatcher has also died.
In other news, over 300 people massed in Glasgow to celebrate the former Prime Minister’s death.
NEWS on Magic Mushrooms. Can they be used to cure depression? The key component is something called psilocybin. The theory is that it can stop patients dwelling on their perceived inadequacies. Psilocybin turns off the brain’s anterior cingulate cortex, an area that appears to control emotion. It is a psychedelic drug.
Says Professor David Nutt (more nominative determinism at work), neuropsychopharmacology at Imperial College London:
“People with depression have overactive default mode networks and so ruminate on themselves, on their inadequacies, on their badness, that they are worthless, that they have failed – to an extent that is sometimes delusional. Again psilo-cybin appears to block that activity and stops this obsessive rumination.”
FLASHBACK looks at football kit changes. When both teams are wearing the ame kit,
Are you Crystal Palace in disguise?
There’s only one conceivable reason why any of the 21,281 spectators at Selhurst Park are likely to remember Saturday’s match between Crystal Palace and Barnsley: both team played in Palace kits. The Eagles played in their usual red-and-blue and the Tykes donned Palace’s yellow away shirt. Whether they took advantage of the 30 percent reduction in the club shop is not known. In the event both teams played like Palace and failed to score.
THE Ladies were out in force for the 2013 John Smith’s Grand National at Aintree Racecourse. On Ladies Day, they saw that the gas companies had bought in more cold weather and dressed accordingly. Dresses were short and shorter. Skin was naked and, as once bevy of race fans from Swansea, showed, naked and chap-proof: