“Holly Tempo Interview” and other links…

Wolfram Alphavolume5.com: “Your whole body is involved, you’re reaching, you’re trying to fit things in. Plus when it’s small, it’s much more focused and intimate so that it’s a very different type of an experience. Then as a viewer, when you’re looking at a tiny object, it’s a different experience than something that’s larger than you are.
Once it gets past your retina and into your nervous system, that’s part of what all the texture and patterns are about.  That’s actually from having seen the work years ago of the Australian Aborigines before they became really popular. I was mesmerized by it. You could say the same thing about the impressionist paintings, what it does to your eyes and mind.”

“3rd World Festival of Negro Arts (FESMAN) in 2009”

fesman2009.com/en/: “In deciding to organize in Senegal the 3rd World Festival of Negro Arts (FESMAN) in 2009, I wanted to salute and to pursue President SENGHOR’s efforts, a man who was the first to face the dreadful task to organize the 1st Festival in 1966. But I also wanted to pay tribute to President OBASANJO, the organizer of the Lagos edition in 1977. It is with great pride and enthusiasm that I have decided to bring this pivotal event to Senegal in 2009, in agreement with the recommendations from the “Ministers for Black World Culture Congress” that gathered in Dakar in 1980.”

“Wolfram Alpha”

SIMPLENVRMT » “A Google search for cheddar cheese yields 3.05 million results, beginning with a wikipedia article for cheddar cheese. Entering the same search string into the Wolfram engine yields a symposium of well-sorted empirical data: Serving Size, Nutritional Information, Daily Values, and a comprehensive, nutrient-by-nutrient breakdown. Similar amounts and intricacies of data are generated with simple searches for dates, cities, and stock information. Wolfram will also solve any mathematical equation.”

“Advanta Lets Trust Unwind” and other links…

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Morningstar Stock Analyst Notes: “Advanta ADVNB is throwing in the towel by closing customers’ credit card accounts for future use and allowing an early amortization of its securitization trust. Although technically this isn’t a failure, we think this marks the end of the firm’s small business card operation. In our view, the chances of a comeback are almost nil.”

“Advanta’s painful plastic surgery”

money.cnn.com: “Advanta (ADVNA), the nation’s No. 14 card issuer and a top lender to small businesses, said last week it will shut down its card business to stem losses. The move is a momentous one, because credit cards bring in nearly all Advanta’s revenue.” I hardly used my Advanta card. Advanta failing along with the buyout of Washington Mutual leaves me alone with Chase Manhattan Bank (again). I considered both Advanta and WAMU relatively “nice” companies while the Chase attitude somehow led me to leave them years ago. Here they come again…

“The Current State of the Black American Economy”

dreamandhustle.com: “To be honest, most Black people are already marginalized and don’t even realize it yet. If you are Black walking around without a college degree and little experience under your belt, you going to have a hard time trying to justify why some employer should pay you a living wage when a foreigner is willing to do the same work you do for half. If you are one of those ‘blessed to have a job’ Black people, your kids may be ill-equipped if you have indoctrinated them to believe they can just replicate your current working situation when they grow up – they won’t. This world is rapidly moving towards a new global working class of people who are multi-national, multi-lingual and multi-talented that is happening right now as you read this.”

Answering “When ‘racist’ is an overused word”

Buy this book at Amazon.com! Lola Adesioye, a British socio-political writer and commentator who lives in New York, took the time to ask some questions in “When ‘racist’ is an overused word.” I consider myself overqualified to answer the questions—which of course is not fashionable in these days of playing stupid for profit—so, I’m over here at my Blog, which means for the time being I can go ahead:

Q: How do you define a racist?

A: I define a “racist” as a person who assumes that the concept of “race” is not only scientific but also eternal or “universal.” People who describe themselves as “Afro-centric” need to work on thinking outside of the boundaries of modern European academic consciousness. Freedom is not the freedom to do what oppressors do. Envy not the oppressor.

Q: How do you define racism?

A: Based on my pervious answer I can refuse to participate in the intellectual framework supporting the existence of this question. Any attempts to ‘lock me in’ or violently disregard my attempts to escape this pedestrian mode of thought stem from the very place were “racism” finds a home. When people insist that you follow a line, they are usually borrowing from military science where focusing on killing is an elaborate discipline. Yes, it is true that soldiers can “think too much” in the haste of combat—but I am not a soldier and haste may come when I decide it is time to move. It is an error to misapply these military ways of death to ways of life. There are army men and then there are family men… This artifact of “racism” is a mere byproduct of invasive, aggressive, preemptive warfare which is merely stealing on a massive scale. This study of war requires egocentrism and its complimentary lack of imagination.

It follows that this “racism” thing comes from egocentrism, a lack of empathic imagination, warfare and the “peacetime” study of war. It is a strategic error to target the container labeled “racism” instead of focusing on these deeper, barbarous qualities of irreligious piety.

Q: What would you say is the difference between racism and discrimination?

A: This left-brain lysis (cutting) yields nothing of interest to me. Slicing a fine line between the container labeled “racism” and the container labeled “discrimination” may appear to be an intelligent thing to do—but I disagree. This aesthetic appearance is, to me, the difference between building with a complex web of flying buttresses and building in large, primal, blocks of stone. My tendency is to prefer primacy.

Q: What’s reverse racism?

A: In “Flippant Remarks about the Difference between a Bright Young Palestinian and Bright Young American Negro,” I wrote:

The Palestinian youths would largely regard as a human stage of adult maturity the ability to work in groups with each other. They should regard as bizarre the idea that working together in Palestinian-only groups is somehow related to “reverse racism”—or a “reverse” of the apartheid system in Israel today (and in the past). In fact, the Palestinian seeking true diversity would work for both Palestinian-only organizations and ethnically diverse groups. (You, reader, should notice that I do not mention gender here. I do not intend to defend certain sexist interpretations of the word of Muhammad.)

In “Flippant Remarks about ‘English-Prime,’” I wrote:

English grows like a cancer sucking in words into its language decade after decade. This activity is based on the imperial tradition of the Normans (the Norse Men—the North Men) who would kick your ass one day and take your clothes and dress and talk like you the next. The Normans are praised by the properly-assimilated [academic] authorities for their ability to conquer and assimilate at the same time. This is regarded as intelligent. In case you would like to flatter yourself with accusations of “reverse racism,” compare the number of words in French and the number of words in English—the French have a different imperial style of kicking ass.

The above probably does not answer the question so I guess I get an F on the standardized test. “Racism” is an abstract noun with the false promise of implied meaning. People who call themselves poets should not depend on these implications to carry their intent. My bias is revealed: being trapped in English, I recommend studying the Imagist movement of Hulme, Ezra Pound and others—as mentioned in “The Art of Poetry” here in the kinté space.

“Space Station Crew Drinks Up To Recycled Urine” and other links…

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techfragments.com: “So on Wednesday, the crew took their recycled urine and said ‘cheers’ together and toasted the researches and scientists that made the Urine Recycler possible. After drinking the water, they said the taste was great! They also said the water came with labels on it that said ‘drink this when  real water is over 200 miles away.’” In my science fiction visions, I see entire societies surviving on recycled urine. Remember Tang, that other space-age technology?

“Neo-Soul Food Cooking”

black girl lost…in a book: “Combining a straight-to-the-point exposé about the fake food filling our supermarkets and the compelling reasons for choosing organic, local, ‘fair’ food, Grub helps all of us become a part of one of the most hopeful movements of the new century: a revolution in food and farming that is best for our bodies and the earth. With spirited and practical how-to’s for creating an affordable, easy-to-use organic kitchen and dozens of delectable recipes, Grub also offers the millions of people who buy organics fresh ideas and easy ways to cook with them.”

“British boffins unveil band-aid that zaps skin cancer with light”

scifi-meshes.com: “Researchers working on the project say that the glowing band-aids work in just 30 minutes. They are used in conjunction with a light-sensitive cream called Aminolaevulinic Acid that, when rubbed into the skin, attaches itself to the cancerous cells and weakens them, making them highly sensitive to light.”

Maison Le Grand

“What do we do? We make unique pesto, savory tapenades and aromatic sauces for Mary, Robert, John and all those food lovers who appreciate great food.” I like their Garden Pesto.

“Days of Glory”: The African Soldiers of WWII

Buy this product at Amazon.com! Director Rachid Bouchareb, his 2006 French breakthrough, Indigènes, introduces the African soldiers of WWII—the African soldiers of WWII? Harold Hyman in Paris (2007) should make people ask themselves why such a question mark appears in the previous sentence, “because the reconstituted French Army of 1943 was essentially l’Armée d’Afrique, in other words, the colonial branch of the armed forces which escaped the dismantlement of the French Army on the Continent by Hitler.”

So, kids, don’t feel sad that this juxtaposition of “African” “soldier” and WWII feels so strange—to celebrate these soldiers means the French would have to acknowledge their necessarily savage colonial past. Also, to really explore the lives of these African men means exploring a psychologically unbearable situation (by “mainstream” standards) where slaves were fighting for their masters—and, in the extreme case of the Senegalese soldiers—as dramatized in Rachid Bouchareb’s other film The Colonial Friend (2004)—, their masters literally slaughtered them right after they helped win the war.

But these massacres are often too much to take for the properly assimilated “regular” person. I really appreciate this shot from the film, a little bin marked “censure” in an office. Your self-proclaiming, meat-and-potatoes, revisionist, non-historian of supreme whiteness would surely laugh at the concept that a love letter between a soldier and his girl would be completely censored—made non-existent. This laughter makes one completely unprepared to imagine that thousands of these little maddening details follows people “of color” to this very day. I daresay the computer programs are yet to be written for neo-Stasi 2.0. Some white people lose it in a matter of minutes being the only Caucasian person on a crowded elevator—while massive psychological edifices have stood for hundreds of years for non-whites—especially Africans.

Rachid Bouchareb, Indigènes (Days of Glory)

My captive hope is that it is not too ignorant to regard Jamel Debbouze as the Chris Rock of France. You can see how adorable he looks in this shot. Harold Hyman describes him as “the impish one.” I’m surprised to know that he was in Spike Lee’s 2005 film, She Hate Me—but I know very well about his work in Luc Besson’s Angel-A (2005).

Jamel Debbouze, Indigènes (Days of Glory)

So, while I am attacking my ethereal ‘properly assimilated person,’ let’s go for those who are quick to claim that, “Hey! It’s only a movie.” Harold Hyman writes:

The screening of Indigènes in early fall, also made political French history. Chirac, under the celluloid spell, instructed his government to hike the “native” veterans’ pensions, which meant aligning them on those of French veterans. Commentators, always eager to cut down Chirac, derided his “sentimental governance”, but recognized the correctness of his decision. Public opinion certainly followed Chirac. More concretely, a few tens of thousands of very old foreign veterans of French wars will get more Euros in Africa, North and West, and Madagascar—no small matter in the Third World. This pension problem started off this way: these Black, Arab, Berber, Malgache, and even Indochinese veterans were pensioned in a special and unfair way. Those who, when the colonies gained independence in the 50s and 60s, gained a new nationality and lost their French one, saw their pensions frozen at its level of the moment, and dissociated from all subsequent revisions pertaining to ordinary French citizens’ veterans pensions. The French Treasury paid these foreign natives, but at the date of independence rate. This differentiation was not strictly racist because natives retaining full French citizenship got full French pensions. The gap in pension levels, however, began a gulf over the years. Even though in the early 90s, some “purchasing power” adjustments were made by the French government, the unjust differentiation remained, in its form.

Rachid Bouchareb, Indigènes (Days of Glory)

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