Archive for December, 2007

Nepal nixes the madness of monarchy

Monday, December 31st, 2007

         See Reuters, Nepal parliament votes to end monarchy,

         “Nepal’s provisional parliament approved a motion to abolish the monarchy on Friday, as part of negotiations with former Maoist rebels to underpin a fragile peace deal.
         The result comes after the rebels fought a decade-long insurgency demanding an end to the monarchy, and analysts say the result is a compromise because King Gyanendra will remain in the palace for now, albeit stripped of all powers.
         Lawmakers voted for Nepal, once the world’s only Hindu kingdom, to become a “federal democratic republican state” …
The popularity of the monarchy has dipped ever since King Gyanendra granted himself absolute power in 2005. He bowed to weeks of bloody protests last year and handed power back to political parties. …
         …the king….is traditionally considered an incarnation of Vishnu, a Hindu god. …”

         Nixing the monarchy. –It’s about time!!

Some Bhutto videos

Friday, December 28th, 2007

         I found these in my inbox, from a William at,

“Bhutto at CFR

Bhutto at the Oxonian Society

Bhutto at IISS

         Worth a look. Thanks William.

RIP Benazir Bhutto, 1953-2007

Thursday, December 27th, 2007

         See, e.g., the Guardian, Bhutto assassinated,

         “The assassination of Pakistani opposition leader Benazir Bhutto last night triggered violent convulsions across the country, casting grave doubts on elections scheduled for January 8 as well as marking a dark finale to a tragedy-strewn life. …
         Two months after her triumphant return from exile, a lone gunman fired several shots at Bhutto as she left an election rally in Rawalpindi, hitting her in the neck and chest. Seconds later a fireball caused by a suicide bomb engulfed her vehicle and killed at least 20 supporters. …
         Bhutto’s violent death echoed that of her father, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, a prime minister deposed by a military dictator in 1977 and hanged two years later. Her two brothers were killed in murky circumstances in the following years. … 
         Late last night Bhutto’s body was moved to Chakala airbase, where it was due to be flown to her home province of Sindh; the governor there announced three days of mourning. In the coming days Bhutto will be buried near her ancestral home in Larkana, inside a huge mausoleum built in recent years to house her father and two brothers, the other ghosts of Pakistan’s most cursed political dynasty.”

         RIP BB.

Happy Kwanzaa!

Wednesday, December 26th, 2007


Mary Christmas!

Tuesday, December 25th, 2007

         One of the most beautiful women I know…


         Linus loves Luke, Luke 2:8-14 in particular,

         “And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
         And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
         And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
         For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
         And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
         And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
         Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”

         Merry Christmas!

Pope: think more about poor, manger Baby

Monday, December 24th, 2007

         See, e.g., DetNews channeling AP, Pope welcomes Christmas at Midnight Mass,

         “Pope Benedict XVI urged the faithful to set aside time in their lives for God and the needy, as he ushered in Christmas early Tuesday by celebrating Midnight Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica.
         Echoing a theme he has raised about an increasingly secular world, Benedict said that many people act as if there is no room for spiritual matters in their lives.
         “Man [sic] is so preoccupied with himself, he has such urgent need of all the space and all the time for his own things, that nothing remains for others, for his neighbor, for the poor, for God,” he said.
         In a homily delivered in Italian in front of thousands packing the basilica, Benedict asked the faithful to make room for God, as well as the less fortunate, in their lives.
         “Do we have time for our neighbor who is in need of a word from us, from me, or in need of my affection? For the sufferer who is in need of help? For the fugitive or the refugee who is seeking asylum? Do we have time and space for God?”
         Benedict drew parallels between what he perceives as modern society’s refusal of God and the story of how Jesus was born in a manger because there was no space for his family at a nearby inn.
         “In some way, mankind [sic] is awaiting God, waiting for him to draw near. But when the moment comes, there is no room for him,” he said.
         But the message of Jesus’ birth, which is marked on Christmas, is also that “God does not allow himself to be shut out,” Benedict said. “He finds a space, even if it means entering through the stable; there are people who see his light and pass it on.” …”

         Preach it brother!! 

Hello Dalai: lecturing lama visits UM next April

Saturday, December 22nd, 2007

See UM News Service, Dalai Lama to deliver U-M Wege Lecture in April,

“The 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet will deliver a special Peter M. Wege Lecture on Sustainability in April at the University of Michigan’s Crisler Arena.
The Nobel Peace Prize winner and Buddhist leader last visited Ann Arbor in 1994, when about 9,000 people attended a lecture at Crisler. The April 20, 2008, lecture coincides with Earth Day weekend and is free and open to the public, though tickets are required.
U-M students, faculty and staff will be able to get tickets to the Wege Lecture beginning March 4 at the Michigan Union Ticket Office. The general public can obtain tickets there starting March 5. There is a limit of two tickets per person. …”

Happy Eid ul-Adha 1428!

Thursday, December 20th, 2007

         “Eid mubarak! Eid saeed!”

Three AACC amigos renounce materialism for holiday season

Thursday, December 20th, 2007

         See AA News, 3 on Council reject raises: Though pay increase passed, 3 who voted no vow to give up money,

         “Stepping up to a challenge issued by one of their colleagues, three Ann Arbor City Council members say they’ll put their money where their mouths are. …
         The council members and mayor will get 3 percent raises in each of the next two years. Council members currently earn $15,000 annually and will see their salaries increase to $15,450 in 2008 and $15,913.50 in 2009. The mayor’s pay will go from $40,000 this year to $41,200 in 2008 and $42,436 in 2009.
         Council Member Leigh Greden, D-3rd Ward, said if council members were sincere about not wanting raises, they should give back the extra money. Greden said it wasn’t right for council members to vote no and then collect the money.
         He vowed to check in six months to see if the three council members who voted against the raises kept the money or not.
         Council Members Sabra Briere, D-1st Ward, Chris Easthope, D-5th Ward, and Mike Anglin, D-5th Ward, vowed to give their raises away.
         Briere and Easthope voted to reject the council and mayoral raises. Anglin said after the meeting that he also voted against the council raises, but not the mayor’s pay hike. Other council members said they didn’t hear him speak out during the vote, and Greden said the clerk’s office didn’t track who voted because it wasn’t a roll-call vote.
         But Anglin said he plans to give his extra pay back to the city.
         Easthope said he accepted Greden’s challenge and would write a check to a nonprofit organization. Briere said she’ll give her raise to Food Gatherers. …”

         Well done public servants!! ! (And note that the various folx refusing the raises, are folx in different “voting blocs” on issues, maybe…)

Fresard gets…a comment

Wednesday, December 19th, 2007

         Donn Fresard’s blog still seems AWOL, but he’s gotten his first comment in three months, albeit one which says he’s trying “to screw over other people”, and says that that’s “mean and stupid.” Well, a blog takes whatever it can get, quarterly or otherwise.