Saturday, December 29, 2007

Saturday Night Main Event

This week: science again!

Saturday Morning (Journalism) Quarterback

The top five stories worth reading from this past week in worth-reading stories:

Coffee House takes a three-part look at Facebook, youth culture and the changing modern definition of privacy.

Daily Kos takes a look at illegal vote caging after the events in Kansas this week.

The Campaign For America's Future has a new report on Conservative obstructionism in Washington – the most obstructionism in modern American history.

More top tens and years in review from Media Matters, Alternet, Think Progress and Slate Magazine.

And, the Financial Times Of London looks ahead to to next year.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Saturday Night Main Event

This week: science!

Saturday Morning (Journalism) Quarterback

The top five stories worth reading from this past week in worth-reading stories:

Salon asks: were the transcendentalists the first me generation?

In economics, Alternet discusses just who will pay for Bush's wars, and the Financial Times Of London elaborate on the dangers of living in a zero sum world economy, and the Center For America Progress shows how debt is haunting us.

An interview with John Haught on science, religion and atheism and the non-conflict between them.

More year-end top tens from one of the top ten years of the 21st century; Salon's top graphic novels, Publisher's Weekly books of the year, The New York Times' best books of the year, and the Boston Globe's best books.

Finally, to wrap up 2007, Think Progress' report on architects of the Iraq occupation: where are they now?

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Saturday Night Main Event

The Mountain Goats perform No Children

Saturday Morning (Journalism) Quarterback

The top five stories worth reading from this past week in worth-reading stories:

Alternet discusses mass production when it comes to food and our bodies.

Takes on The Mitchell Report from both The Nation and King Kaufman.

In economics this week, The Boston Review writes of the troubling embrace of Alexander Hamilton; the Center For American Progress details the abuses of the Labor Department under Bush, as well as the complacency trap of unemployment; Alternet reports that the American dream is alive and well – just not here in America; and The Financial Times Of London speculates on how the world should respond to solve the problem of the dollar and the future of organized labor.

23/6 asks: are you smarter than a White House press secretary?

Finally, it's the time of year for year-end best of the years! Alternet's top ten rights and liberties stories of 'aut 7; Salon's best books of 'aut 7; Slate's best books of 'aut 7; and Cryptomundo's top ten Bigfoot stories of the year.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Karlheinz Stockhausen, 1928-2007

Last year, I attended the three-night San Francisco Tape Music Festival, and my relationship with music still hasn't completely recovered. I went in with a fairly minimal knowledge of contemporary experimental music. Many of the pieces I heard there were quite annoying--could there be any other word for them?--but to call them annoying would somehow be to miss the point. Calling them annoying would be like calling Artaud crazy. Well yes, of course he is, but what else is he?

The finale of the festival was a performance of Stockhausen's Hymnen (1967), a two-hour piece that doesn't pull any punches. It's about, well, the world, and as it thrusts toward its inevitable ending, the central question makes itself clear: do we even stand a chance?

But the world of this music is much more than a reflection of current events. Like twentieth century poetry, Stockhausen's music is a music that can include anything: found material, other people's music, static, extraneous noise, silence--this is a music that says yes.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Brian Joseph Davis at the Lab

If you've ever listened to WFMU or read their fantastic blog, then you're probably already aware of Brian Joseph Davis. He's the guy who recorded strangers singing The Beatles' Yesterday from memory and copied banned records after burning them. I think that it would be fair to call Davis the most punk of the current generation of sound artists. Like the best experimental music, his ideas have a way of becoming less ridiculous after you listen to them.

Davis will be performing some of his works this Thursday at The Lab, as well as reading from his new fictional Patty Hearst autobiography, I, Tania.

His show was going to be at 21 Grand, but apparently our favorite venue in the East Bay has been getting into some trouble with the city of Oakland. So his performance is merging with a reading by Instant City and Small Desk Press. Should be a great time.


We have another round of great work to publish on the main site starting this week; we just need to cross some Ts.

Some life changes have slowed down the site a little bit, but fear not. Those of you with outstanding submissions, thanks for your patience. You'll hear from us soon.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Saturday Night Main Event

Nothing literary this week, just some cooking with Bill Belichick.

Saturday Morning (Journalism) Quarterback

The top five stories worth reading from this past week in worth-reading stories:

Raw Story reports that our national debt growns nearly a million dollars a minute.

The BCS is downright idiotic, as reinforced by King Kaufman, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, and Fan Nation.

The Nation takes a walk down John Ashbury lane. The Guardian reports that a woman was jailed in England for writing extremist poetry.

Alternet talks with Thom Hartmann about changing language to change politics, and discusses how Conservatives get people to vote against their interests.

And, Salon reviews Shortcomings, the new graphic novel by Adrian Tomine, creator of Optic Nerve.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Poetry in America

This was passed on to us by Jessica Wickens.

It's a study of poetry and poetry readers in America. It's worth reading, though I'm not sure how I like being referred to as a "poetry user."

Poetry in American Full Report.pdf

Saturday, December 01, 2007

It's December!

Time to launch the first item in the annual Idiolexicon Gift Guide:

For the women in your (writing) life.

Saturday Morning (Journalism) Quarterback

The top five stories worth reading from this past week in worth-reading stories:

iPolitics are everywhere; do you feel empowered? Also, Credo wonders aloud if Ross Perot was right.

The Financial Times Of London reports on the Groucho Marx approach to global warming.

Smithsonian Magazine suggest that the Ark Of The Covenant may be in Ethiopia. Also, the BBC reports that an unexplainable cosmic nothing has been found.

Alternet looks at how the consumer driven culture is killing our democracy. The amount of people applying to Wal*Mart is a bad sign for the American worker. The Financial Times Of London asks for a global response to the faltering of the U.S. economy.

And, Wired Magazine remembers the original Futurama from the 1939 World's Fair.

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