Friday, April 30, 2004


(thanks to Michelle for passing this one on)

1. Grab the nearest CD.
2. Put it in your CD-Player (or start your mp3-player, I-tunes, etc.).
3. Skip to Song 3 (or load the 3rd song in your 3rd playlist)
4. Post the first verse in your journal along with these instructions. Don’t name the band, nor the album-title.

This is actually a bit complicated because I'm in my office at home and there are something like 100 CDs "nearest" to me. Anyway, here's one semi-random selection

This street holds its secrets
like a cobra holds its kill.
This street minds its business
like a jailer minds his jail.
That house there is haunted.
That door's a portal to hell.
This street holds its secrets very well.


1. No new net jobs have been produced in the Swedish private sector since 1950.

2. "None of top 50 companies on the Stockholm stock exchange has been started since 1970."

3. "...well over 1 million people out of a work force of around four million did not work in 2003 but lived on various kinds of public welfare programs, such as, pre-pension schemes, unemployment benefits, sick-leave programs, etc."

4. "Sweden has dropped from fourth to 14th place in 2002 among the OECD countries (i.e., affluent industrialized countries) in terms of GDP per capita since 1970."
He ends with a good question:
I'm willing to take the Swedish model seriously. I've been to Stockholm several times and loved it. That being said, how attractive will this model remain when it offers only half of the per capita income of the United States?


Revelations and photos about the treatment of Iraqi prisoners under American management. The people who are responsible for this deserve to have the book thrown at them as hard as possible.

UPDATE: Glenn Reynolds collects some responses (universally critical) of this indefensible behavior.

Thursday, April 29, 2004


"IT's Korea!" Corsair the Rational Pirate responds with a resounding "NOT" (thanks to Budaechigae for the link). My only question is whether "ITs Korea!" will spawn a younger sibling to "Huby" and what it would be called: "ITty?"

The aforementioned Kimcheegi also has an interesting and useful post on the numbers of U.S. soldiers that are soon to descend on P'yongt'aek.

Cathartidae participates in the latest silly thing going around the blogosphere. "Grab the nearest book, turn to page 23, find the 5th sentence. Post the entire text of it, either here, or in your own blog. Add these instructions." OK, I'll take the bait:
"Nothing changed for several minutes, except that the torcheres blazed and cheers rang down from the deepning night sky"
No money but eternal admiration and adulation for the intredpid soul that can name the book from which that innocuous sentence came.

Flying Yangban sees something that OOP (Uri Party) and the one-hit wonder The Vapors have in common.

Speaking of the Uri Party, the Marmot notices a new fashion trend among party members (and it ain't pretty).

And, on a more serious matter, NK Zone reports on yesterday's North Korea Freedom Day.

Dinner's ready. More later (perhaps).

UPDATE: Lileks mis-typed Google and ended up with this. How close are you to your inner GOODLE?

Wednesday, April 28, 2004


Have spent the last couple of days attending various luncheons and talks hosted by well-known think tanks around town. A few interesting observations that emerged include:
There is a significant (and probably growing) element of the South Korean population that is convinced that the U.S. wants to keep the Koreas divided in order to further American hegemonic ambitions in the region.
I think one could actually turn this argument on its head and conclude that since the Bush Administration is the only power that openly talks of regime change in North Korea, the U.S. is actually the only power that is interested in unification anytime soon. If it were up to the powers that be in the ROK, unification would happen decades in the future at best. If it were up to Bush, it would happen tomorrow because the ROK would have no choice but to move in to fill the power vacuum left by the hoped for collapse of the Kim Jong Il regime. Of course since I don't think that it is all that likely that the Kim regime will collapse, I'm not necessarily an enthusiastic backed of Bush's hard-line toward North Korea but that doesn't mean Bush is anti-unification.

More later. I have another talk to go to.


Neil Barker thinks so. And after reading this entry Admiral Yi's Nanjung Ilgi, I am inclined to agree:
"While I wish to keep all daily events in written record, due to my busy programs on land and sea with no time to rest, I have long forgotten to keep my diary (as I did forget sometimes in the past). From here I must continue writing once again." (pages 23-24)

Monday, April 26, 2004


When asked after the Dallas Mavericks impressive game 3 win over the Sacramento Kings whether he thought the Mavs won because they played well or because the Kings played poorly, Nelson responded that it was hard to tell, much like a thermos. "How do it know?" queried the ever eccentric Nelson. When you put something hot in it, it stays hot. When you put something cold in it, it stays cold. "How do it know?" This was, apparently, not the first time that Nelson used a cryptic thermos reference to answer a question from the press. A few weeks ago when asked about Steve Nash's season, Nellie replied:
"He's kind of like the thermos," Nelson said. "You put hot things in it, it stays hot. You put cold things in it, it stays cold."
This is probably just Nellie playing mind-games with a press that all too often asks the most inane questions. But who knows? Perhaps Nellie is presenting us with a koan for the NBA era.

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