Friday, January 20, 2006

Life Before Roe v. Wade



"On January 22, 1973, the Supreme Court voted by a margin of 7-2 that a woman had a constiutional right to an abortion. On the 23rd anniversary of that decision, the Senate Judiciary Committee is contemplating the nomination of Samuel Alito, a man who is on record opposing abortion rights. Here are the brief stories of three people who helped provide abortion before 1973. They are members of Voices of Choice, a multi-media project with two dozen physicians and social activists who helped provide safe, illegal abortions before Roe v. Wade was decided. Their voices are a reminder that outlawing abortion doesn't make it go away; it just makes it less safe." (AlterNet article)

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Web sites judged in a blink



"Internet users can give Web sites a thumbs up or thumbs down in less than the blink of an eye, according to a study by Canadian researchers. In just a brief one-twentieth of a second -- less than half the time it takes to blink -- people make aesthetic judgments that influence the rest of their experience with an Internet site." (CNN Technology article)

Although I was find it funny when people decide to invest time and money to research the mind-numbingly obvious, it made me wonder what you all think of cyborgdemocracy.net and cyborgdemocracy.net/blogger.html ?

As of today, all the links have been updated and a new feature was added. You can now email a blog post you like to a friend.

Buddhism without Beliefs and the Gross National Happiness



From Amazon.com: "In Buddhism Without Beliefs, author Stephen Batchelor reminds us that the Buddha was not a mystic. His awakening was not a shattering insight into a transcendent truth that revealed to him the mysteries of God, and he did not claim to have had an experience that granted him privileged, esoteric knowledge of how the universe ticks. What the Buddha taught, says Batchelor, is not something to believe in but something to do. He challenged people to understand the nature of anguish, let go of its origins, realize its cessation, and bring into being a way of life. This way of life is available to all of us, and Batchelor explains clearly and compellingly how we can practice it and live it every day. Each chapter of Batchelor's book examines how to work toward awakening realistically, with the understanding that embarking on this path does not mean never deviating from it."

From Wikipedia: "Gross National Happiness (GNH) is an attempt to define a standard of living in more holistic and psychological terms than Gross National Product. The term was coined by Bhutan's King Jigme Singye Wangchuck in 1972. It signalled his commitment to building an economy that would serve Bhutan's unique culture based on Buddhist spiritual values. Like many worthy moral goals it is somewhat easier to state than to achieve, nonetheless, it serves as a unifying vision for the Five Year planning process and all the derived planning documents that guide the economic and development plans to the country. While conventional development models stress economic growth as the ultimate objective, the concept of GNH is based on the premise that true development of human society takes place when material and spiritual development occur side by side to complement and reinforce each other. The four pillars of GNH are the promotion of equitable and sustainable socio-economic development, preservation and promotion of cultural values, conservation of the natural environment, and establishment of good governance."

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

The Impeachment of George W. Bush



"Finally, it has started. People have begun to speak of impeaching President George W. Bush -- not in hushed whispers but openly, in newspapers, on the Internet, in ordinary conversations and even in Congress. As a former member of Congress who sat on the House Judiciary Committee during the impeachment proceedings against President Richard Nixon, I believe they are right to do so."

Read more on the AlterNet.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

FLESH & METAL


An exploration of the human/machine society we live in
Essays and virtual artwork on the relationship between man and technology

Posthuman intellect analyzes American politics



"Noam Chomsky: Democrats read the polls way more than I do, their leadership. They know what public opinion is. They could take a stand that's supported by public opinion instead of opposed to it. Then they could become an opposition party, and a majority party. But then they're going to have to change their position on just about everything.

Take, for example, take your pick, say for example health care. Probably the major domestic problem for people. A large majority of the population is in favor of a national health care system of some kind. And that's been true for a long time. But whenever that comes up -- it's occasionally mentioned in the press -- it's called politically impossible, or "lacking political support," which is a way of saying that the insurance industry doesn't want it, the pharmaceutical corporations don't want it, and so on. Okay, so a large majority of the population wants it, but who cares about them? Well, Democrats are the same. Clinton came up with some cockamamie scheme which was so complicated you couldn't figure it out, and it collapsed.

Kerry in the last election, the last debate in the election, October 28 I think it was, the debate was supposed to be on domestic issues. And the New York Times had a good report of it the next day. They pointed out, correctly, that Kerry never brought up any possible government involvement in the health system because it "lacks political support." It's their way of saying, and Kerry's way of understanding, that political support means support from the wealthy and the powerful. Well, that doesn't have to be what the Democrats are. You can imagine an opposition party that's based on popular interests and concerns. "

Read more on the AlterNet.