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Sunday, October 15, 2006

Mercy, Merchandise, and Mitochondria 

Check it! (does AliG-style finger snapette thing) There's been such demand for official Deviant Synapse apparel gear that I had no choice other than to create a shop where you can buy all kinds of wicked merch with my official "Check the Napse" logo on it. (Well, two kinds: a shirt and a cap.) Makes a great gift!*

* Notice: Does not make a very good gift at all. Neither Deviant Synapse nor its primary shareholders shall be liable for any botched holidays or celebrations which result from erroneous gift-giving with these items.

Amazing Grace

Did you know the Amish community in Pennsylvania has been offering their solace to the family of the gunman who shot the girls in their school?
Last week, the Amish families affected by the tragedy expressed forgiveness for the gunman who killed himself after shooting the girls.

The mother and grandmother of Marian Fisher, one of the five students killed, welcomed Mrs. Roberts’ aunt into their home the day after the shootings...
The community has also established a fund for the guy's kids. This made me weep. I'm always blown away by people who have the strength to forgive rather than seek vengeance. If you want a true mind-blowing example, read Forgiving the Dead Man Walking by Debbie Morris. One of the most powerful books I've ever read.

Where Have You Been!?

I know, I know -- it's been a while since I rapped at ya. The truth is I've been really busy with school (I've proposed a new class idea; had to work on that lots this week), and BF2:MC is taking up the rest of my time. I got Socom III recently, but it's pretty weak. It's really hard to tell who the bad guys are (and I thought BF2:MC was tough!), and there's not a lot of satisfaction when you do well. I'll stick with Backstab and DeadlyPass.


I've been saving some stuff here lately.. Let's take a look.

Walden Bello has a good piece at The Nation about microcredit. As you may know, the Nobel Peace Prize for this year went to Muhammad Yunus, who pioneered the concept in Bangladesh. While it's a truly excellent program -- and Yunus deserves the Nobel Prize, without question -- we shouldn't think it's something more than it is.
microcredit is a great tool as a survival strategy, but it is not the key to development, which involves not only massive capital-intensive, state-directed investments to build industries but also an assault on the structures of inequality such as concentrated land ownership that systematically deprive the poor of resources to escape poverty. Microcredit schemes end up coexisting with these entrenched structures, serving as a safety net for people excluded and marginalized by them, but not transforming them. No, Paul Wolfowitz, microcredit is not the key to ending poverty among the 75 million people in Andhra Pradesh.
It's a step in the right direction -- but not the only one we need to take.

Check out the Little People art project. Cute!

You may have heard that Wisconsin State Assembly Representative Frank Lasee (who has a lovely drink named after him, available at fine Indian restaurants) has advocated that teachers be allowed to carry guns to deter violence in schools. Well, I'm not interested in having guns -- but I would like to have a set of nunchuks or a blowgun with tranquilizer darts. That would be sweet!*

* Notice: I don't actually have any desire to carry weapons in school -- this is satire. The idea of bringing more weapons into the schools is sheer lunacy. And no, the drink is not named for Mark Lasee.

We saw The Departed last night., Decent enough movie, but it wasn't as emotionally gripping as Donnie Brasco. And -- as always -- the love story was horrible.


Spend eight minutes exploring The Inner Life of a Cell. Many thanks to MonkeyFilter.

Today I'm listening to: DJ Liquid!