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There is no Hell but there is torture. It is constant in the world. Sadly, war is sometimes necessary and war is difficult. Torture is easy to do. Stupid and cruel men are always available and all they need to do torture is permission. In Iraq, the American torturers had the go-ahead from seniors officers who, in turn, had permission from George Bush and Dick Cheney. They made an important mistake - a mistake that led to them becoming war criminals. The mistake was their idea that torture would make America strong when, in fact, it made America look hopelessly weak. 
This week, Barack Obama admitted to torture. He said:

We tortured some folks.

Despite Obama’s desire to tell the truth, the words have a quick and casual tone that makes them seem false. No doubt the plan was to sneak away from the moral disaster with a few well-chosen words. But the smell of sulfur lingers. 
American politicians love to end their speeches with the words, “God bless America!” To the rest of the world, it seems typically and obnoxiously American. Why would God bless one nation and exclude the rest? And why, especially, would God’s grace be given to torturers? For Obama’s confession to be full and true, he should have said:

We tortured people and, when we did, we lost God’s blessing.

http://www.nytimes.com/video/multimedia/100000003035205/obama-says-that-after-911-we-tortured-some-folks.html
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/aug/01/obama-cia-torture-some-folks-brennan-spying

There is no Hell but there is torture. It is constant in the world. Sadly, war is sometimes necessary and war is difficult. Torture is easy to do. Stupid and cruel men are always available and all they need to do torture is permission. In Iraq, the American torturers had the go-ahead from seniors officers who, in turn, had permission from George Bush and Dick Cheney. They made an important mistake - a mistake that led to them becoming war criminals. The mistake was their idea that torture would make America strong when, in fact, it made America look hopelessly weak. 

This week, Barack Obama admitted to torture. He said:

We tortured some folks.

Despite Obama’s desire to tell the truth, the words have a quick and casual tone that makes them seem false. No doubt the plan was to sneak away from the moral disaster with a few well-chosen words. But the smell of sulfur lingers.

American politicians love to end their speeches with the words, “God bless America!” To the rest of the world, it seems typically and obnoxiously American. Why would God bless one nation and exclude the rest? And why, especially, would God’s grace be given to torturers? For Obama’s confession to be full and true, he should have said:

We tortured people and, when we did, we lost God’s blessing.

http://www.nytimes.com/video/multimedia/100000003035205/obama-says-that-after-911-we-tortured-some-folks.html

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/aug/01/obama-cia-torture-some-folks-brennan-spying

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Genius potters make the world seem good and sane and beautiful.

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Madewell is an online women’s clothing shop. Seems like nice stuff but my interest - as a guy - is limited. But I like their blog, Musings. As they say,

Consider this your haul from the weekend farmer’s market of links: fresh, good for you and best consumed in the company of friends (you’ll want to share).

http://blog.madewell.com/2014/07/25/weekly-roundup-what-to-read-this-weekend-26/#more-4687

Madewell is an online women’s clothing shop. Seems like nice stuff but my interest - as a guy - is limited. But I like their blog, Musings. As they say,

Consider this your haul from the weekend farmer’s market of links: fresh, good for you and best consumed in the company of friends (you’ll want to share).

http://blog.madewell.com/2014/07/25/weekly-roundup-what-to-read-this-weekend-26/#more-4687

Photoset

Every morning I catch a bus exactly like the one in the top photo. I’m a happy public transit user. As you can see from the second image, public transportation (or bike) is the answer. 

http://www.treehugger.com/htgg/how-to-go-green-public-transportation.html

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Gaza. Again. Not ‘Never again’. It’s again and again.
Again, the same lies and the same hatred. The rest of the world is disgusted and bored because there is something deeply offensive and stupid in the endless repetition. Two groups of religious fanatics, hating and killing. With the Americans providing 3 billion dollars a year in military equipment so Israel can hate and kill and win.  
Not really win; just survive. Winning would mean killing all the Palestinians! And that is impossible. So…again and again…
http://www.vox.com/2014/7/14/5898581/chart-israel-palestine-conflict-deaths
Continuing intelligent debate on the issue (if you can hack it), here:
http://dish.andrewsullivan.com/tag/israel/

Gaza. Again. Not ‘Never again’. It’s again and again.

Again, the same lies and the same hatred. The rest of the world is disgusted and bored because there is something deeply offensive and stupid in the endless repetition. Two groups of religious fanatics, hating and killing. With the Americans providing 3 billion dollars a year in military equipment so Israel can hate and kill and win.  

Not really win; just survive. Winning would mean killing all the Palestinians! And that is impossible. So…again and again…

http://www.vox.com/2014/7/14/5898581/chart-israel-palestine-conflict-deaths

Continuing intelligent debate on the issue (if you can hack it), here:

http://dish.andrewsullivan.com/tag/israel/

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Beef is bad…for the environment. Really bad. Now we know that the environmental cost of beef is 10 times that of the other main sources of protein in the Western diet. As the researchers state:

Cattle require on average 28 times more land and 11 times more irrigation water, are responsible for releasing 5 times more greenhouse gases, and consume 6 times as much nitrogen, as eggs or poultry.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140721151912.htm

Beef is bad…for the environment. Really bad. Now we know that the environmental cost of beef is 10 times that of the other main sources of protein in the Western diet. As the researchers state:

Cattle require on average 28 times more land and 11 times more irrigation water, are responsible for releasing 5 times more greenhouse gases, and consume 6 times as much nitrogen, as eggs or poultry.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140721151912.htm

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We don’t know for sure if God exists or not. You make your choice and find out later. But we do know for sure that balsamic vinaigrette is so delicious that tasting it makes you believe (temporarily at least) there must be a God!
And it’s easy to make! thank you, Chinese Grandma!
http://chinesegrandma.com/2010/11/balsamic-vinaigrette/

We don’t know for sure if God exists or not. You make your choice and find out later. But we do know for sure that balsamic vinaigrette is so delicious that tasting it makes you believe (temporarily at least) there must be a God!

And it’s easy to make! thank you, Chinese Grandma!

http://chinesegrandma.com/2010/11/balsamic-vinaigrette/

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moma: Alexander Calder. Untitled. 1939.

momaAlexander Calder. Untitled. 1939.

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A piece from ‘Herberto’, written and illustrated by Lara Hawthorne. 
You can buy the book by emailing the publisher, Bruaa: shop@bruaa.pt.
More Lara: larahawthorne.tumblr.com

 

A piece from ‘Herberto’, written and illustrated by Lara Hawthorne

You can buy the book by emailing the publisher, Bruaa: shop@bruaa.pt.

More Lara: larahawthorne.tumblr.com

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Bamboula bag made of sisal, $42, from Kenya. nice
http://www.bamboulaltd.com/dog.php?pid=2352&sid=53148917

Bamboula bag made of sisal, $42, from Kenya. nice

http://www.bamboulaltd.com/dog.php?pid=2352&sid=53148917