Monthly Archives: October 2002

Sixteen Years Ago

Let me tell you a story about honorable and dishonorable activities. In the early 80's, Mordechai Vanunu was working in Israel's top secret Dimona nuclear weapons factory, as well as at the Nes Nion chemical and biological weapons plants. I should point out that none of these plants are, or ever have been, open to international inspections of any kind, even though conservative estimates put Israel at the 6th largest nuclear power, with regional land and air superiority that has nearly double the firepower of US forces.

In any case, Vanunu began having ethical concerns and left, but not before taking numerous photos of the plants to show the world what was happening. He fled Israel, through Asia and then to Australia. He then risked his life by revealing the existence of the program (until that point, there was no public knowledge that Israel had such advanced weapons of mass destruction) to the London Sunday Times. He called on all citizens to do the same, saying, “Rise and cry out… You are the secret agent of the people. You are the eyes of the nation.”

Shortly thereafter he met a beautiful and enticing woman, who invited him on a trip to Rome. Unfortunately this woman was actually a Mossad agent sent to capture him, and he soon found himself drugged, bound, dumped into an Israeli cargo vessel. When his kidnappers got him to Israel he was charged with espionage and sentenced to 18 years in prison at a closed-door trial. This happened almost exactly sixteen years ago (his parole was due three years ago, which has been ignored), and he has spent nearly all of this time in solitary confinement. He spoke out for the benefit of all humanity, and the international community is allowing him to die for it.

He's spent nearly a quarter of his entire life in solitary confinement, in a tiny cell, while Israel ignores the cries of dozens of international organizations like Amnesty International. I should point out that Israel's capture and incarceration of Vanunu was absolutely in violation of international law (if that's not obvious). In addition, even though the US passed the Symington Accord, which forbids it from giving assistance to countries who develop nuclear weapons outside of international control and agreement, it continues to give $3 billion a year to Israel (which is currently threatening its neighbors with nuclear attacks).

Not that it matters, considering that the world's powers have made it very clear, over and over and over, that Israel is absolutely above the law…

For more information, try the following links:


On another note, the upload is at 56 meg so far and looking good…

Cards

So I'm still struggling with this upload. I don't know if it's the windstorm that's causing problems, or if trying to upload an 85 meg zip file is always a pain in the ass across satellite, but the farthest I've gotten is about 50 meg and for whatever reason it's not wanting to resume so I'm having to start over. If it fails again, I'll look into the resume problem.

Other than that I had to cancel my PayPal card (just the card, my account is still fine)… Noticed this morning the card had gone missing (I'm pretty sure I know how), so now I've got a few weeks without a card before PayPal gets my new one to me, assuming this backwoods post office is even willing to deliver it (so far they've refused to deliver my mail on account of “not knowing me” — I liked it when I was in the city and anyone could write any damn thing they wanted on an envelope and as long as the address was right it got to me).

Poop.

Well, I'm not having any luck… I wanted to do an “Officer BME” takeoff on the logo, but it turned into “white trash karate guy” (and not even very good at that). Oh well. If any of the numerous more-talented-than-me artists want to take a go at a BME reward shirt, I'm totally open to submissions!

Hardy har har har

Two hunters are out in the woods when one of them collapses. He doesn't seem to be breathing and his eyes are glazed. The other guy takes out his phone and calls the emergency services.

He gasps: "My friend is dead! What can I do?" The operator says: "Calm down, I can help. First, let's make sure he's dead." There is a silence, then a gunshot is heard. Back on the phone, the guy says: "OK, now what?"

Apparently that's the world's funniest joke. What's more interesting though is the regional breakdown. According to the study, Germans find almost everything funny, most of the British Empire likes word-play jokes, Europe enjoys surreal academic humor, while Americans (and Canadians as well, although Canadians had the “toughest standards” for jokes in that they found the least funny, probably why Canadian comedians are so influential — they have to work so hard here!) like jokes that put people down. Want more? Buy the book I guess.

There were two top competing Canadian high-ranking jokes. I think I like the one on the right better.

When NASA first started sending up astronauts, they quickly discovered that ballpoint pens would not work in zero gravity. To combat the problem, NASA scientists spent a decade and $12 billion to develop a pen that writes in zero gravity, upside down, underwater, on almost any surface including glass and at temperatures ranging from below freezing to 300 Celsius.

The Russians used a pencil.

Q: What do you call a woman who can balance four pints of beer on her head?

A: Beatrix.

Memories of 1995

I found an old photo CD from 1995, and thought I'd share a few pix from it. Dunno if they're interesting to anyone but me, and maybe Saira, Ryan, and Ryan, but here we go:

This is my second tattoo, hand poked with a needle while in my bedroom… It's supposed to be a cat skull or something. It's since covered up with blackwork.

The proprietor of BMEshop, when we both worked at Stainless Studios! I have some shots of the other Ryan as well somewhere that I'll have to dig up.

Perhaps this is the earliest recorded screenshot of BME. Sorry it's so grainy.

Me in 1995, whith short dyed black hair. My other ear is just a 6ga in this photo I think.

Saira, and I think that's our friend Jen standing in front of her.

My first “professional” tattoo (also the artist's — a friend of mine — first tattoo). It's since been covered up by the aliens you see outlined in the photo.