Friday, April 18, 2014

Give Guns To The Rhinos

In 1969, Americans reached the Moon and displayed the American flag to acknowledge their monumental achievement.

In 2014, a bunch of assholes killed a rhino for fun, and displayed the American flag....because they're assholes.

Trophy hunting like this enrages most people today, and its exposure can cost people their jobs, marriages and friends.

Seems fair.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Excellent collection of British science fiction and pulp magazine cover art from the 1950s over at Dark Roasted Blend. A few of my favourites:

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Donald Rumsfeld - What A Monstrous Asshole

Doco maker Errol Morris has turned his cameras on former US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, in 'Unknown Known.' The doco, mostly talking head interviews with Rumsfeld, is said to be a frustrating, infuriating experience, and Morris has said he knows less about Rumsfeld The Human after 32 hours of interviews than he did before he started the project. He doesn't even sound sure anymore than Donald Rumsfeld is actually human.

The Washington Post claims in 'Uknown Known' Rumsfeld finally loses the battle with the truth. But the WP misses the point with Rumsfeld, he never cared about the truth. It Simply Did Not Matter.


But as part of promoting his new film, Morris gave this extraordinary interview about Rumsfeld, a man ultimately responsible for the deaths of thousands of American soldiers and through his incompetence the deaths of tens of thousands more Iraqi civilians. Morris is convinced that Rumsfeld simple does not care. Which, of course, made him perfect for the Bush II White House and it's unflagging interest in re-directing as many taxpayer dollars to the US defence industry as they could. Mission Accomplished, indeed.

Here's Morris:
Rumsfeld has immense power. He controlled the most powerful military apparatus in history. That has to be taken into account. He also was in possession of these working principles which were really, really, when you look at them, nefarious. I don't know how else to describe them. Nefarious seems too kind.

I'll give you an example. Working principles like, "absence of evidence is not the evidence of absence." He wrote this in one of these snowflakes that he sent to the President. I think he sent a version of this twice in the early years of the Bush administration. I see the Airedale president reading this material, and how is it intended? It was intended with respect to WMD in Iraq. If you can't find WMD in Iraq that doesn't mean it isn't there. As my son would often say: it's not lost I just don't know where it is. And where did that expression come from? I trace it back to its origins. It came from the British astronomer, president of the Royal Society, Master of Trinity College, Martin Rees, O.M. He wrote about it with respect to SETI, with respect to the possibility of intelligent life somewhere else in the universe.

Bigger than Iraq. So you're rooting around in the universe, you can't find signals from intelligent life, but, you know, maybe you didn't look in the right place in the right way. So Rees and Carl Sagan popularize it and it's picked up by the Anti-Ballistic Missile Commission. Now it's taken on a new context, a new meaning. In the extreme form, the example I give in my New York Times essay, someone says there's an elephant in the room. You open the door, you look around for the elephant, you look in the closets, pull out all the drawers in the bureaus, you bend down and peek under the bed. No elephant. Absence of evidence? No, I don't think so. Evidence that there is no elephant in the room? Looked in the drawers, bent down, peered under the bed, etcetera etcetera. No elephant.
An expression that seems to have meaning in one context has a radically different meaning in a different context. And taken to some absurd conclusion you can use that principle, the absence of evidence isn't an evidence of absence, to justify anything.

Which Rumsfeld did, over and over and over again.

And here's Louis CK asking Rumsfeld, repeatedly, if he is a lizard:

Here's a fascinating, and all but forgotten now, piece of Donald Rumsfeld history. He and Dick Cheney had an 'Armageddon Plan'
At least once a year during the 1980s Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld vanished. Cheney was working diligently on Capitol Hill, as a congressman rising through the ranks of the Republican leadership. Rumsfeld, who had served as Gerald Ford's Secretary of Defense, was a hard-driving business executive in the Chicago area where, as the head of G. D. Searle & Co., he dedicated time and energy to the success of such commercial products as Nutra-Sweet, Equal, and Metamucil. Yet for periods of three or four days at a time no one in Congress knew where Cheney was, nor could anyone at Searle locate Rumsfeld. Even their wives were in the dark; they were handed only a mysterious Washington phone number to use in case of emergency.
After leaving their day jobs Cheney and Rumsfeld usually made their way to Andrews Air Force Base, outside Washington. From there, in the middle of the night, each man joined by a team of forty to sixty federal officials and one member of Ronald Reagan's Cabinet slipped away to some remote location in the United States, such as a disused military base or an underground bunker. A convoy of lead-lined trucks carrying sophisticated communications equipment and other gear would head to each of the locations.

Rumsfeld and Cheney were principal actors in one of the most highly classified programs of the Reagan Administration. Under it U.S. officials furtively carried out detailed planning exercises for keeping the federal government running during and after a nuclear war with the Soviet Union. The program called for setting aside the legal rules for presidential succession in some circumstances, in favor of a secret procedure for putting in place a new "President" and his staff. The idea was to concentrate on speed, to preserve "continuity of government," and to avoid cumbersome procedures; the speaker of the House, the president pro tempore of the Senate, and the rest of Congress would play a greatly diminished role.

The inspiration for this program came from within the Administration itself, not from Cheney or Rumsfeld; except for a brief stint Rumsfeld served as Middle East envoy, neither of them ever held office in the Reagan Administration. Nevertheless, they were leading figures in the program.

A few details about the effort have come to light over the years, but nothing about the way it worked or the central roles played by Cheney and Rumsfeld. The program is of particular interest today because it helps to explain the thinking and behavior of the second Bush Administration in the hours, days, and months after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. Vice President Cheney urged President Bush to stay out of Washington for the rest of that day; Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld ordered his deputy Paul Wolfowitz to get out of town; Cheney himself began to move from Washington to a series of "undisclosed locations"; and other federal officials were later sent to work outside the capital, to ensure the continuity of government in case of further attacks. All these actions had their roots in the Reagan Administration's clandestine planning exercises.
The rest of that story is here.

Donald Rumsfeld Deserted His Post On The Morning Of 9/11

Rumsfeld Confronted By CIA Veteran Over His Iraq War Lies

2006: American Army Mutiny Quelled As Rumsfeld Thrown Out Of Pentagon

9/11 Flashback: Rumsfeld Claimed In 2004, Flight 93 "Shot Down" 

2006: The US Generals War On Donald Rumsfeld

Rumsfeld's Secret Plan For American Global Dominance

Rumsfeld Made $5 Million From Bird Flu Fear Campaign

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Death To Humans! How Nature Has Devastated Humankind Over And Over Again

The European Black Death of 1348-1351 is estimated to have killed more than half of all Europeans
With a human death toll between 100 million and 200 million people, The Black Death in the mid-14th century still wins as the worst natural disaster for humanity in history, And the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918-1920 wasn't far behind.

But what was responsible for the most humanity-devastating natural disaster of the past 90 years? Landslides, earthquakes, tsunamis, bushfires?

Try, floodwaters:
The worst natural disaster in history, the Central China Floods occurred from July to August 1931, when the Yangtze River overflowed and caused a series of floods. As a result of the massive flooding, an estimated 3.7 million people died from drowning, disease and starvation. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, more than 51 million people, or one-fourth of China's population, were affected by the Central China Floods.
Sediment that accumulated in the Yangtze River was normally cleared, or reduced. But a civil war meant standard maintenance was neglected and the spread of floodwaters was far greater, and more devastating, than it otherwise may have been.

More On The 1931 China Floods Here

Background on 10 Worst Natural Disasters For Humans at Live Science.

And another piece on the 25 Worst Natural Disasters In History if you haven't had your 'Nature Kicks HumanKind's Butt' fill just yet.

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Indiana Jones And The Raiders Of The Black Lung

Linking to this piece, 21 Things You Might Not Have Known About Raiders Of The Lost Ark (but probably did if you were a Raiders fan and had read a bunch of articles about the making of the movie) is just an excuse to run these beautiful production design illustrations by Jim Steranko.

Not included in the article is this interesting fact: Director Steven Spielberg decided Indy would not be a smoker, and would not be seen hand-rolling cigarettes or having one hanging out of his mouth. A last minute decision before shooting, apparently. Smoking in movies still wasn't a huge deal when Raiders Of The Lost Ark was made, but now, of course, it is. Presumably, had Indy Jones been a smoker, at some point, all scenes in the movie where he was seen rolling cigarettes or puffing away would have been CGI-ed to remove them.

Background on the production art
As he did with illustrator Ralph McQuarrie’s famous concept art for Star Wars, George Lucas commissioned artwork to set the tone and visualize the concepts of Raiders of the Lost Ark in 1979 before any frame of the movie was actually shot. Famed graphic artist and illustrator Jim Steranko was chosen to bring the world of Indiana Jones to life, and he created four paintings of the rogue archeologist in thrilling situations that were inspired by—among other influences—Humphrey Bogart in Treasure of the Sierra Madre, Doc Savage pulp magazine covers, and a production still from the 1937 film Zorro Rides Again that showed Zorro jumping from a horse onto a moving truck. Steranko’s interpretation of the character effectively defined the Indiana Jones look and persona we would see onscreen—including the iconic hat, beat up leather jacket, and bullwhip.

The Full Story Is Here

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Tony Blair Offered To Help Rupert Murdoch Deal With Hacking Scandal Fallout

Rebekah Brooks, Rupert Murdoch, James Murdoch

UPDATE: Wow, Tony Blair's London office has confirmed the below story about the former UK prime minister offering advice to James and Rupert Murdoch shortly after the expose of News of the World's hacking of murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler and the arrest of Andy Coulson.

Incredibly, Blair's office got this official statement out incredibly fast, less than two hours after Blair-related revelations hit news site. Here's the statement from Tony Blair's office: 
"This was Mr Blair simply giving informal advice over the phone.

"He made it absolutely clear to Ms Brooks that, though he knew nothing personally about the facts of the case, in a situation as serious as this it was essential to have a fully transparent and independent process to get to the bottom of what had happened.

"That inquiry should be led by credible people, get all the facts out there and that if anything wrong were found there should be immediate action taken and the changes to the organisation made so that they could not happen again.

"If what he was being told by her was correct, and there had been no wrongdoing, then a finding to that effect by a credible inquiry would be far better than an internal and therefore less credible investigation."
 Got a feeling Tony Blair is going to seriously regret confirming that phone conversation with Rebekah Brooks. Wonder if he'll wind up in the dock as a witness at the Hacking Trial?


Remarkable. When Rupert Murdoch's world was falling in around him, in early July 2011, as the world began to discover the depraved depths his tabloids would go to to 'get the story', former British prime minister Tony Blair offered to act as an "unofficial adviser" to James Murdoch, Rupert Murdoch and former News of the World editor and then News International (now NewsCorp) CEO Rebekah Brooks.

The phone call offering help to Rebekah Brooks came only days before her arrest, and when a police investigation was already underway.

This was revealed in an email recovered from a News International hard drive from Rebekah Brooks to Rupert's son, James Murdoch, made public during the Hacking Trial now underway in London:

Great comment from James Murdoch: "What are you doing on email?" Yes, Rebekah, what the bloody hell are you doing putting such things into electronic mail? Don't you know how hard they things are to shred?

In the email, Rebekah Brooks alleges Tony Blair suggested the following during an hour long phone call:
1. Form an independent unit that has an outside junior counsel, Ken Macdonald, a great and good type, a serious forensic criminal barrister, internal counsel, proper fact checkers etc in it. Get them to investigate me and others and publish a Hutton style report

2. Publish part one of the report at same time as the police closes its inquiry and clear you and accept short comings and new solutions and process and part two when any trials are over.

3. Keep strong and definitely sleeping pills. Need to have clear heads and remember no rash short term solutions as they only give you long term headaches.

4. It will pass. Tough up.
More on the email here

For someone who was writing on the Murdoch Hacking Scandal way back when Murdoch's people were still blaming "one rogue reporter", and only a few media outlets were getting into the story, I've been incredibly slack covering the Hacking Trial here.

Life got in the way. Will try and keep up.

But here's a great summary of the Hacking Trial so far from journalist Peter Jukes supplies a "half time" report here, covering the prosecution's case against Brooks, Andy Coulson and other former employees of Rupert Murdoch:
(Rebekah Brooks) faces the most number of charges — four: one for conspiracy to phone hack, one for conspiracy to bribe public officials and two charges of conspiracy to hide evidence from police.

When it came to evidence that Brooks, while editor of the Sun, approved nearly £100,000 of payments to a Ministry of Defence employee, Bettina Jordan-Barber, Laidlaw meticulously went through the published stories, correlated them with official MOD press releases and noted when the stories often concerned bullying, or lack of kit for British soldiers.

So central was the now defunct News of the World to British public life that every day at the hacking trial can bring some new revelation about Fleet Street practices, celebrity affairs, the private lives of the royal family or senior politicians, or indeed the defendant’s friends and contacts. Lawyers, senior police officers, footballers, pop stars and prime ministers float by in evidence. Some lie buried in a Mulcaire notebook, some passing email or text message, can have an impact on lives, careers, reputations. Maybe this is a tribute to Rupert Murdoch’s amazing newspaper and business acumen in making one paper so central to a country’s discourse — or a warning about the dangers of newspaper monopolies.
The Hacking Trial has resumed in London today, and now it's the defence team's turn. Rebekah Brooks will be answering questions, under oath, this week. Rupert Murdoch and James Murdoch are still rumoured to eventually appear in the dock themselves before the trial winds up in May this year.
Some more background to the Hacking Trial here:
Who is on trial?

The three highest-profile defendants are: Brooks, 45, a former editor of the News of the World and former chief executive of Murdoch's British newspapers; Coulson, 45, another former News of the World editor who was Cameron's communications chief until 2011; and Brooks' 50-year-old husband Charles, a racehorse trainer.

Coulson and Rebekah Brooks have become the faces of the scandal, though neither has been convicted of wrongdoing.

He was the elusive figure - rarely photographed - behind Cameron's canny media strategy. She was the flame-haired, high-flying editor who exchanged text messages with her friend and neighbour Cameron while overseeing Murdoch's politically powerful British newspapers.

They face trial alongside former News of the World managing editor Stuart Kuttner; ex-news editor Ian Edmondson; former royal editor Clive Goodman; Rebekah Brooks' former assistant Cheryl Carter; and Mark Hanna, former security chief at Murdoch's News International unit.

 How did the allegations arise?

The charges stem from the scandal that erupted in 2011, when it was revealed that journalists at the News of the World eavesdropped on the cellphone voicemail messages of celebrities, politicians, crime victims and others in the public eye.

The furore led Murdoch to close the News of The World and triggered police investigations into phone hacking, computer hacking and the bribery of officials, probes that have expanded to take in possible wrongdoing at other British newspapers.
UPDATE: The revelations in the Rebekah Brooks email about Tony Blair's offer of PR help, just days after the Milly Dowler scandal erupted is big news, huge news:

Previous Coverage Of The Murdoch Hacking And Bribery Scandals On Your New Reality:

July 10, 2009: Rupert Murdoch Instructs Fox Journo On Questions He Will And Won't Answer

July 10, 2009: Murdoch Could Pay Out Billions For Illegal Phone Hacking Of Celebrities, Politicians, Sports Stars

July 13, 2011: Rupert Murdoch's Massive Spying Operation Finally Exposed

July 18, 2011: Fox News Claims Murdoch Media Are Real Victims Of Hacking Scnadal

July 21, 2011: The Many Sticky Threads Of Rupert Murdoch's Massive Hacking And Bribery Network

July 27, 2011: Ex-Murdoch Editor Claims Milly Dowler's Phone Was Hacked Only To Help Police

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

David Foster Wallace's 'Books You Should Read'

"Victim" - David Foster Wallace annotated this copy of Stephen King's Carrie

Infinite Jest author David Foster Wallace is too often remembered, and praised, as a "high-brow" writer, which is a shame, because such praise turns a lot of would-be readers off, which means they don't get exposed to the brilliance of his essay writing, in particular, and ignores the fact that he could get plenty trashy in his own writings, and genuinely loved popular American fiction.

Here's a few lists of his recommended reading.

10 Favorite Books:

1. The Screwtape Letters, by C.S. Lewis

2. The Stand, by Stephen King

3. Red Dragon, by Thomas Harris

4. The Thin Red Line, by James Jones

5. Fear of Flying, by Erica Jong

6. The Silence of the Lambs, by Thomas Harris

7. Stranger in a Strange Land, by Robert A. Heinlein

8. Fuzz, by Ed McBain

9. Alligator, by Shelley Katz

10. The Sum of All Fears, by Tom Clancy

He went a bit more "high-brow" for this list from Salon:

Socrates’ funeral oration

John Donne

“Keats’ shorter stuff”


William James’ Varieties of Religious Experience

Wittgenstein’s Tractatus

Joyce’s Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

Hemingway’s In Our Time

Don DeLillo 


The Great Gatsby

He also had a soft spot for Stephen King's Carrie, Jackie Collins' Rock Star and James Elroy's The Big Nowhere.

If you've never read David Foster Wallace, start with some of his essays, before delving into his fiction. If you don't like the pace and rants of his essays, you probably won't like his fiction.

Here are some of my favourite DFW essays:
Many more DFW free-to-read essays online here

Great interview with David Foster Wallace here

 Full Story At Open Culture

Friday, February 14, 2014

Everything I've Ever Needed To Know I've Learned From Philip K Dick


Philip K Dick wasn't just one of the great American writers of the 20th century, and one of the world's most famous science fiction authors, he was quite the philosopher, and many of his novels, short stories and speeches contained valuable life lessons for wired-up generations of Century 21.

Here's my list of Life Lessons learned from reading Philip K Dick:
* Your toaster may be plotting to kill you.

* Coin-operated front doors should not be fitted with speaking computers that drip attitude and sarcasm.

* Empathy is everything.

* Those who promise The Cure sometimes also manufacture The Cause

* That lone dog barking frantically in the early morning just might be trying to warn you of an alien invasion.

* You can write about a reality in fiction and watch it come true in the supposedly real world.

* Books, newspapers, cat litter bags, when left unsupervised for short periods of time can self-replicate.

* If you spend too much time alone, experimenting with drugs like PCP and mega-doses of vitamins, you can convince yourself that you have the ability to travel back in time and visit yourself, as a much younger person. And then remember it, suddenly, as having already occurred.

Lots More Life Lessons Learned From Reading Philip K Dick Here

Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Dictators Love Censorship And Hate Free Speech, NewsCorp Joins Them

When Rupert Murdoch's Daily Telegraph was opposed to 'media censorship'

By Darryl Mason

Alleged "free speech" champions, Rupert Murdoch's NewsCorp, has sent lawyers after the Paperboy website, that does an excellent job of rounding up daily front pages of newspaper from around the world.

But why?

Why would NewsCorp want to deny international readers the joys of uniquely Australian front pages like this, from today's Northern Territory News?
Or is NewsCorp's bizarre demands to Paperboy more about hiding evidence of their often absurdly biased front page political coverage?

Like this spread of NewsCorp front pages that helped the Abbott government get elected in Australia last year?

Perhaps NewsCorp don't want the rest of the world to see when they photoshop an Australian prime minister and public servants into Nazi uniforms?

Considering the amount of cutting and pasting of other media's content, Facebook photos, Instagram pics, blog posts and Twitter comments that goes at NewsCorp's newspapers and online news sites, it's an outrageous demand inflicted on Paperboy to stop using the media corporations front pages. What happened to fair use?

But unfortunately for those who like to flick through newspaper front pages from all over the world, Paperboy is not in a position to fight NewsCorp's anti-free speech demands.

So unless Rupert Murdoch comes to his senses and tells the lawyers to bac off, NewsCorp newspaper front pages will disappear from the Paperboy site, as though they never existed.

What a bunch of dicks.

The London Times Busted Stealing Blog Content

Murdoch Media Reaches Grim New Low

Rupert Murdoch's Australian Media Hits Peak Hitler

Murdoch Media Blames '300,000 Global Warming Deaths' On Obese People

Rupert Murdoch Attacks Bloggers Again, As His Empire Falls

Tuesday, January 28, 2014


For someone returning to playing piano and keyboards 32 years after giving them up for writing, and as a 1980s Metallica fan, this performance of 'One' by Metallica and master pianist Lang Lang at the Grammy's is fucking mind-melting, and hugely inspiring. Heavy metal piano? Don't mind if I do!

If sometime in the future the below video is deleted, just vid-search for 'Metallica Lang Lang One' and soak up the Awesome.

Like Dogs, Humans Can Smell Sickness In Others

An absolutely startling piece of news to me, and confirmation, years later, that my senses were telling me the truth.

I once 'smelled' cancer in an elderly woman, and alerted a relative that she was seriously ill, when she and her family did not know she was ill. A horrible thing to do.

The elderly woman was then confirmed by testing to be terminally ill, and it was too late for her to be treated, but there was time for her family to say goodbye properly, and for her to prepare for her death.

From the UK Independent:
Humans can smell sickness in others because their immune systems are more active, a new study has found.
A team of researchers at the Karolinska Institutet, in Sweden, say there is anecdotal and scientific evidence to suggest that diseases have particular odours.

For example, Scrofula, an infection of the lymph nodes, reportedly smells like stale beer, and a person who suffers from diabetes will sometimes have acetone-smelling breath.

The team, led by Professor Mats J. Olsson, recruited eight healthy participants and injected them with either a form of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) - a toxin made from bacteria and known to ramp up an immune response, or a saline solution.

....participants who were having a stronger immune response were found to have more unpleasant smelling odours by others.

Prof Olsson said being able to detect these smells could represent a critical adaptation to help humans avoid potentially dangerous illnesses.

"The question we asked ourselves in this study was whether such an adaptation might exist already at an early stage of the disease, thereby reflecting a biomarker for illness, " he said.

"Interestingly, in a chemical assay the researchers found no difference in the overall amount of odorous compounds between the LPS and control group.

"This suggests that there must have been a detectable difference in the composition of those compounds instead."
A bit more on this here

Thursday, January 23, 2014

SexBots Are The Future Of Digital Performance Art

As an experiment, Brandon Boyer 'fed' online sex bots to each other. And this is what happened:


Not much in media yet, but people are having online relationships with automated tweet bots. Some humans know the bots aren't real, and don't care. Unlike many real humans online, the bots they talk to often respond.

As artificial intelligence improves, we will live in a future where depressed or suicidal people are counseled on Twitter by auto-psychbots. And lonely people will find many friends of the automated variety.

The new movie 'Her' touches on these ideas, and coming realities, but only scratches the surface of such scenarios.

Kurt Cobain - My Top 50 Albums

Image via DaveGrohlTumblr

This full list of Kurt Cobain's favourite, and most influential albums did the rounds of the music press in the 1990s. While many are key influences on Cobain and the music of Nirvana, some made the list because Cobain they were bands he wanted Nirvana fans to hear and he knew people would pay attention if he gave them a big plug. Great to see this again, online,  and to see Cobain's original handwritten list.

Iggy and the Stooges, “Raw Power”
Pixies, “Surfer Rosa”
The Breeders, “Pod”
The Vaselines, “Pink EP”
The Shaggs, “Philosophy of the World”
Fang, “Landshark”
MDC, “Millions of Dead Cops”
Scratch Acid, “Scratch Acid EP”
Saccharine Trust, “Paganicons”
Butthole Surfers, “Pee Pee the Sailor” aka “Brown Reason to Live”
Black Flag, “My War”
Bad Brains, “Rock for Light”
Gang of Four, “Entertainment!”
Sex Pistols, “Never Mind the Bollocks”
The Frogs, “It’s Only Right and Natural”
PJ Harvey, “Dry”
Sonic Youth, “Daydream Nation”
The Knack, “Get the Knack”
The Saints, “Know Your Product”
anything by Kleenex
The Raincoats, “The Raincoats”
Young Marble Giants, “Colossal Youth”
Aerosmith, “Rocks”
Various Artists, “What Is It”
R.E.M., “Green”
Shonen Knife, “Burning Farm”
The Slits, “Typical Girls”
The Clash, “Combat Rock”
The Faith/Void, “Split EP”
Rites of Spring, “Rites of Spring”
Beat Happening, “Jamboree”
Tales of Terror, “Tales of Terror”
Leadbelly, “Leadbelly’s Last Sessions Vol. 1″
Mudhoney, “Superfuzz Bigmuff”
Daniel Johnston, “Yip/Jump Music”
Flipper, “Generic Flipper”
The Beatles, “Meet the Beatles”
Half Japanese, “We Are They Who Ache With Amorous Love”
Butthole Surfers, “Locust Abortion Technician”
Black Flag, “Damaged”
Fear, “The Record”
PiL, “Flowers of Romance”
Public Enemy, “It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back”
Marine Girls, “Beach Party”
David Bowie, “The Man Who Sold the World”
Wipers, “Is This Real?”
Wipers, “Youth of America”
Wipers, “Over the Edge”
Mazzy Star, “She Hangs Brightly”
Swans, “Young God”

If you're a young musician, interested in rock, you can't go wrong randomly picking 10 or more of these albums and soaking them up.


Here's Cobain's original handwritten list:

1. Iggy and the Stooges, “Raw Power”
2. Pixies, “Surfer Rosa”
3. The Breeders, “Pod”
 The Vaselines, “Pink EP”
5. The Shaggs, “Philosophy of the World”
6. Fang, “Landshark”
7. MDC, “Millions of Dead Cops”
8. Scratch Acid, “Scratch Acid EP”
9. Saccharine Trust, “Paganicons”
10. Butthole Surfers, “Pee Pee the Sailor” aka “Brown Reason to Live”
11. Black Flag, “My War”
12. Bad Brains, “Rock for Light”
13. Gang of Four, “Entertainment!”
14. Sex Pistols, “Never Mind the Bollocks”
15. The Frogs, “It’s Only Right and Natural”
16. PJ Harvey, “Dry”
17. Sonic Youth, “Daydream Nation”
18. The Knack, “Get the Knack”
19. The Saints, “Know Your Product”
20. anything by Kleenex
21. The Raincoats, “The Raincoats”
22. Young Marble Giants, “Colossal Youth”
23. Aerosmith, “Rocks”
24. Various Artists, “What Is It”
25. R.E.M., “Green”
26. Shonen Knife, “Burning Farm”
27. The Slits, “Typical Girls”
28. The Clash, “Combat Rock”
29. The Faith/Void, “Split EP”
30. Rites of Spring, “Rites of Spring”
31. Beat Happening, “Jamboree”
32. Tales of Terror, “Tales of Terror”
33. Leadbelly, “Leadbelly’s Last Sessions Vol. 1″
34. Mudhoney, “Superfuzz Bigmuff”
35. Daniel Johnston, “Yip/Jump Music”
36. Flipper, “Generic Flipper”
37. The Beatles, “Meet the Beatles”
38. Half Japanese, “We Are They Who Ache With Amorous Love”
39. Butthole Surfers, “Locust Abortion Technician”
40. Black Flag, “Damaged”
41. Fear, “The Record”
42. PiL, “Flowers of Romance”
43. Public Enemy, “It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back”
44. Marine Girls, “Beach Party”
45. David Bowie, “The Man Who Sold the World”
46. Wipers, “Is This Real?”
47. Wipers, “Youth of America”
48. Wipers, “Over the Edge”
49. Mazzy Star, “She Hangs Brightly”
50. Swans, “Young God”
1. Iggy and the Stooges, “Raw Power”
2. Pixies, “Surfer Rosa”
3. The Breeders, “Pod”
4. The Vaselines, “Pink EP”
5. The Shaggs, “Philosophy of the World”
6. Fang, “Landshark”
7. MDC, “Millions of Dead Cops”
8. Scratch Acid, “Scratch Acid EP”
9. Saccharine Trust, “Paganicons”
10. Butthole Surfers, “Pee Pee the Sailor” aka “Brown Reason to Live”
11. Black Flag, “My War”
12. Bad Brains, “Rock for Light”
13. Gang of Four, “Entertainment!”
14. Sex Pistols, “Never Mind the Bollocks”
15. The Frogs, “It’s Only Right and Natural”
16. PJ Harvey, “Dry”
17. Sonic Youth, “Daydream Nation”
18. The Knack, “Get the Knack”
19. The Saints, “Know Your Product”
20. anything by Kleenex
21. The Raincoats, “The Raincoats”
22. Young Marble Giants, “Colossal Youth”
23. Aerosmith, “Rocks”
24. Various Artists, “What Is It”
25. R.E.M., “Green”
26. Shonen Knife, “Burning Farm”
27. The Slits, “Typical Girls”
28. The Clash, “Combat Rock”
29. The Faith/Void, “Split EP”
30. Rites of Spring, “Rites of Spring”
31. Beat Happening, “Jamboree”
32. Tales of Terror, “Tales of Terror”
33. Leadbelly, “Leadbelly’s Last Sessions Vol. 1″
34. Mudhoney, “Superfuzz Bigmuff”
35. Daniel Johnston, “Yip/Jump Music”
36. Flipper, “Generic Flipper”
37. The Beatles, “Meet the Beatles”
38. Half Japanese, “We Are They Who Ache With Amorous Love”
39. Butthole Surfers, “Locust Abortion Technician”
40. Black Flag, “Damaged”
41. Fear, “The Record”
42. PiL, “Flowers of Romance”
43. Public Enemy, “It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back”
44. Marine Girls, “Beach Party”
45. David Bowie, “The Man Who Sold the World”
46. Wipers, “Is This Real?”
47. Wipers, “Youth of America”
48. Wipers, “Over the Edge”
49. Mazzy Star, “She Hangs Brightly”
50. Swans, “Young God”

Thursday, January 16, 2014

"There Is No Obvious Connection Between Curly Fries And HIgh Intelligence"

This excerpt from an academic paper (no link) is one of the most popular items on social media today, discussing the psychology of social media 'likes' and 'favourites'. Pretty excellent:

Monday, January 13, 2014

The Staggering Loss Of Earth's Forests

Goodbye forests, hope we can find a way to live without you.

More here:
"...the Earth lost about 888,000 square miles of forest between 2000 and 2012. The loss, which was most dramatic in the tropics, was primarily due to logging, urban development, strip mining, and other human impacts, Hansen said, but the figure also includes loss from fires, earthquakes, and other natural disasters."