A Seasonal Tale
Waiting for Santy
A Christmas Playlet
(With a Bow to Mr. Clifford Odets)
by S. J. Perelman
SCENE: The sweatshop of S. Claus, a manufacturer of children's toys, on North Pole Street. Time: The night before Christmas.
:: | 2:37 pm | | | | (0) comments
:: Tuesday, December 24, 2002 ::
Demonstrators gathered at the Italian Consulate in Edinburgh to remember Carlo Giuliani and call for justice for the 42 arrested 'no global' activists in Italy.
:: | 2:40 pm | | | | (0) comments
There ain't no Sanity Clause
The Edinburgh SSP Xmas party was visited by its own Sanity Clause.
:: | 2:39 pm | | | | (0) comments
:: Wednesday, December 18, 2002 ::
anti-war flash movie at dubyadubyadubya.com
:: | 1:27 pm | | | | (0) comments
From Jack Kane to national fame . . The Scotsman Diary Amusing piece on the SSP Xmas Party.
I should point out that the Evening News photo (below) was by my comrade Gerry McGarvey not myself. Photos from the EPF have been syndicated and proceeds will go towards next years Edinburgh People's Festival.
:: | 12:23 pm | | | | (0) comments
:: Tuesday, December 17, 2002 ::
Edinburgh Evening News - Top Stories - When David was no pop Goliath . .
Festival organiser Colin Fox said: "It was one of the last gigs he played before he went on to Fame Academy.
"It was a really busy night. There were about 14 different entertainers, including some stand-ups. There were a couple of hundred people there of all ages. Some were from Craigmillar and others from all over the city.
"We gave David his first big break and everyone was just bowled over by him. Perhaps the highlight was when he did a Kinks tribute melody. He sounded fantastic.
"I’ve sent him an e-mail saying we hope he’s OK for next year as well.
"We’re awaiting a reply to say he will fit us in between the London Palladium and the SECC."
Nice article and it uses my photo from the EPF website.
:: | 1:15 pm | | | | (0) comments
:: Monday, December 16, 2002 ::
MOVEMENTS FOR SOCIALISM
This new website is an initiative of independents within the Socialist Alliance (of England). It kicks off with the contents of a new pamphlet on the experience of building mass movements and socialist unity internationally. I have contributed an article on the SSP, which you can also read on the site.
:: | 11:32 am | | | | (0) comments
The Chances of Anything Coming From Mars was a Million to One...
August 2002 saw the Edinburgh People's Festival in Edinburgh. This event was an attempt to return to the roots of the festival fringe, and to the original people's festival which was set up by the labour movement in Edinburgh. The 2002 event was held in the Jack Kane Centre in Craigmillar. It was a great night with all sorts of talented acts. Probably everybody's favourites was a band called the Martians, who were hilariously re-enacting the classic War of the Worlds album. A few months later and a familiar face wins BBC's Fame Academy. It's David Sneddon lead singer of the Martians. Fair play to him.
:: | 10:29 am | | | | (0) comments
:: Thursday, December 12, 2002 ::
BBC SPORT | Football | Austria-Switzerland to host Euro 2008
Scotland and Ireland bid fails. Doh! a deer, a female deer...
:: | 4:20 pm | | | | (0) comments
:: Wednesday, December 11, 2002 ::
Interview with Jon Johansen -
Jon Johansen is a 16 year old Norwegian being tried for helping create the DeCSS DVD playback utility for Linux.
LinuxWorld: What kind of arguments would you have expected, or what kind of arguments do you think might have been better?
Jon Johansen: I would have expected for them to try to explain to the court that this had nothing to do with copying, because encryption does not prevent copying -- which the DVD CCA [Copy Control Association] and MPAA are claiming. And everybody knows that even if something is encrypted you can still copy it if the reading of the data goes through decryption.
:: | 4:35 pm | | | | (0) comments
:: Monday, December 09, 2002 ::
Textism » Resources » Word HTML Cleaner
Most of us have had to, at least once, produce html from a Word document. The easiest way is to save as HTML from Word. But, jesus, look at that hideous bloated code it produces, with proprietary tags everywhere. I just can't do it. It's about as standards compliant as Cheri Blairs estate agent. But now there is a solution the Word HTML Cleaner. Hoorah!
:: | 10:48 am | | | | (0) comments
:: Thursday, December 05, 2002 ::
Aragorn against the war
Actor Viggo Mortensen, who plays Aragorn in the Lord of the Rings series of films, has come out strongly against the war in Iraq on a US talk show. The reaction of some US fans (see the link above) is pretty funny..."how can he turn on the country that gives him the right to spew his bullshit". Well, he is Dane, in a New Zealand production of an English book, and I believe that's what they call free speech.
"Viggo had a shirt on that said, No blood for Oil. He questioned the U.S. on attacking and bombing innocent people. He said the U.S. is the bad guy and that Bush is Saruman. He said we should question what's going on. He also said it's wrong how the news turns into a countdown to war, like it's a countdown to New Years."
Of course Tolkien fought at the Somme in WW1, and his books are filled with that experience. I think to call him anti-war is going too far, but he certainly didn't glorify war. He knew all about the reality of battle.
:: | 4:15 pm | | | | (0) comments
:: Tuesday, December 03, 2002 ::
CD Review: Rise Above -- 24 Black Flag Songs To Benefit The West Memphis Three.
In May 1993 a horrific incident took place in West Memphis, Arkansas. Three young children were brutally bound, mutilated and murdered. Nothing of the sort had ever happened in the small community, and local police had no experience of dealing with this sort of crime. Having ineptly destroyed forensic evidence during their investigation they decided that the murders must be Satanic ritual killings. The local community similarly became caught up in the "Satanic" witch-hunting frenzy.
Police suspicion immediately fell on a young man called Damien Echols. Like many young working class teenagers he had been in and out of trouble with the law. The local police seemed to have something of a vendetta against Echols. They had been after him for years. Oh, and Damien and his friends liked rock music and horror novels.
After a number of attempts to get "witnesses" to testify, police finally questioned Jessie Misskelley, a young man with learning difficulties. After 12 hours of questioning and lie detector tests (he passed but was told he had failed) in a room which prominently featured a baseball bat in the corner, Jessie implicated himself, Damien Echols and Damien's friend Jason Baldwin in the murder.
The three were tried in an atmosphere of "Satanic panic" in the local community. Like something out of The Crucible, local people started to "remember" all sorts of terrible things about the youths on trial. At the trial amongst the evidence presented was a Stephen King book, heavy metal t-shirts and lyrics from Pink Floyd and Blue Oyster Cult albums, items that have sold millions of copies world-wide. This was supposedly evidence that the three were involved in a satanic cult.
When the verdict was delivered Jason and Jessie found themselves sentenced to life in prison, with no possibility of parole, and Damien was sentenced to die by lethal injection.
Reading about this case on the West Memphis Three website, I found myself filled with anger and incredulity. That such a mediaeval atmosphere of hatred could be created and that such an appalling miscarriage of justice could happen in supposedly the most advanced industrial nation in the world is shocking. But of course Britain is no stranger to the lynch mob-mentality.
Singer Henry Rollins was similarly affected after watching a documentary about the case. Inspired to action he organised this benefit album, in which a variety of stars record the songs of Henry's old band, the seminal punk legends Black Flag.
As Henry states in the sleeve notes, this is no ordinary benefit album, this is a 'must have'. Highlights include Chuck D of Public Enemy on the title track, Lemmy of Motorhead with a throat burning version of 'Thirsty and Miserable' and tracks from the mighty Ice-T and Iggy Pop. If your tastes are more contemporary you might want to check out the contributions from members of Rancid, Slipknot, Ryan Adams and Queens of the Stone Age.
If you can't face hardcore punk the way it was meant to be played then just go to the WM3 website and make a donation.
No-one should be executed for their clothes or their attitude. Free the West Memphis Three!
:: | 4:27 pm | | | | (0) comments