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WReck This Mess: Mental Surreal Petticoats

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  • ninplant@xs4all.nl
    wReck thiS meSS ~ Radio Patapoe 97.2 ~ Amsterdam Ethno-Illogical Psycho-Radiographies: 291: Under Profound Petticoats PTP in the ether: 88.3FM streaming via
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 13, 2005
      wReck thiS meSS ~ Radio Patapoe 97.2 ~ Amsterdam

      Ethno-Illogical Psycho-Radiographies: 291: Under Profound Petticoats

      PTP in the ether: 88.3FM
      streaming via internet:
      <http://freeteam.nl/patapoe/>
      <http://freeteam.nl:8000/patapoe.m3u>

      6 june 2005 / 16.45-19.00

      "...for those of you who have got a loved one in the United States
      military, I want to say two things to you:
      one, we'll make sure your loved one has whatever is necessary to
      protect America; and,
      secondly, thank you for their sacrifice."
      o George Bush, press conference where he 'reassured' parents
      of soldiers stationed in Iraq
      o
      "Pardon me, are you sick in your eyes / cuz there's that look you
      can't disguise"
      o Erika Stucky, "The Manson Look"
      ±±±±

      On the Swing > Shelley Hirsch & David Weinstein [1]
      Encounter 3 > Iris Garrelfs [2]
      You, Box > Lynn Book [3]
      Kyrie > Toby Twining & [4]
      Encounter 6 > Iris Garrelfs [2]
      Warsaw Vibes > Magic Carpathians Project [5]
      Erika's Alptraum > Christine Lauterburg [6]
      Encounter 6 > Iris Garrelfs [2]
      + Matterhorn Echoes > Betty Vetterli [7]
      One in 1,000,000 > Lena Lovich [8]
      Temptation > Erika Stucky [9]
      Geissel Drama > Christine Lauterburg [6]
      Tipsy > Erika Stucky [9]
      Wha' 'Bout > Emily Hay [10]
      Per Dispetto di Mamma [To Spite My Mother] > Female Voice with Bagpipe [11]
      Kanou > Rokia Traoré [12]
      The Devil Had A Hold On Me > Gillian Welch [13]
      If Six Was Nine [Hendrix] > Erika Stucky [9]
      Whiskey Girl > Gillian Welch [13]
      Broken Again > Laura Cantrell [14]
      Poor Old Crow > Peggy Seeger [15]
      When the Roses Bloom Again > Laura Cantrell [14]
      I'll Look Around > Madeleine Peyroux [16]
      I'm Not Afraid To Die > Gillian Welch [13]
      Cool Cool Water > Liz Masterson & Sean Blackburn [17]
      Weary Blues > Madeleine Peyroux [16]
      Tumbleweed Yodel > Joyce Leonard [18]
      Burst > Shelley Hirsch [19]

      [1] "Imaginary Landscapes" on Elektra This compilation includes part
      of a long piece called "Pomp and Circumstances" SH is in full
      yodeling flair up here combining and morphing the zeitgeist at will.
      New Yorker Shelley Hirsch is best known for her kinetic multiple
      personality panoply of voices that seem to emerge from her mouth as
      if by some temporary self-induced psychotic state. It is
      improvisation of the highest art order but also, dare I say,
      incredibly moving [bio-melodrama] and entertaining. She is a bit of a
      shaman in her ability to shift into new guises, voices, dreams, and
      personalities. She makes imperceptible legato slides from style to
      genre to questionable mental states. She has a command of cabaret,
      Borscht Belt routines, a grip on opera, 40s swingin' pop, jazz, rock,
      Broadway musicals, as well as post-Dada forays into the abstract
      frontier of language as pure sound experiments. She moves from East
      New York denizen to operatic diva at the blink of an eye.

      [2] "Specified Encounters" on bip-Hop <www.bip-hop.com>. I have been
      waiting a long time for this solo project by the very talented IG.
      She seems to embody or enthroat the best of the Lorelei's charms,
      combining electronic control with an element of Yoko Ono's conscious
      primalism, with the ethereal wafting vocals that recall the tender
      electro-mediated cyborgian femme vocals of the ambient mid-90s, both
      mediated- compromised and piercingly-earnest. How a modern artist can
      do that is the magic of creation and music. She also works with
      other electronic sonic manipulators like si-cut, Burnt Friedman, To
      Rococo RotŠ She also creates site-specific installations,
      co-organises the Sprawl audio happenings in London, hosts a radio
      show on Resonance FM, DJs, and her photos have appeared in the Wire,
      the Face, and other glossies. This is definitely worth checking out
      because if you like the interface of the most heavenly junction of
      the human voice with the most tenuous aspects of electronica then
      this is essential.

      [3] "Red / You" on Voice Lab <www.voicelabnyc.com> Special personal 2
      cut CD. That Lynn Book is among the most intensely experimental among
      voice-smiths is instantly evident when you see/hear her live. That
      she has the flexibility to be simultaneously investigative and
      humorous is evident on her records and during her live performances.

      [4] "Chrysalid Requiem" on Cantaloupe info@...
      <www.cantaloupe.com>. Yodeling in a new classical environment.
      Refreshing like navigating a motorized skateboard through a cathedral
      naked except for an attractive gargoyle pattern of medieval-inspired
      tattoos.

      [5] "Sonic Suicide: Ethnoise #1" on Vivo <www.magiccarpathians.com>.
      Always top-notch speculative, wandering, searching vocal ambience
      that sways between spiritual, investigative, and heretical. Diamanda
      Galas finally finds the right drugs?I am not crazy! I am NOT hearing
      yodeling everywhere but definitely some fine ethno-ambient Carpathian
      yodeling although MCP insist there is no yodeling tradition there.

      [6] "Tanx Tanz!" on CSR from her hit yodel-dance CD "Echo der Zeit."
      CL remains for me one of the most interesting vocalists ullulating
      today. She seamlessly and humorously yet not derisively combines
      avant garde explorations within the traditional mountain vocals
      [including extended yodeling] while also seeking a comfortable amount
      of elbow room on the dance floor.

      [7] "Matterhorn Echoes" on Bright Productions. While on book tour I
      read in Monroe Wisconsin, just down the road from New Glarus. I had a
      tour of the region, the micro-brewery New Glarus, the tourist
      attractions and I indeed did feel that kind of effervescent
      mountain[y] briskness of Switzerland and its people. Proper and yet
      willing at a moment's notice to let go with a yodel on a dark street.
      For this event some 250 people [maybe] showed up to hear me read,
      play weird yodel samples from surprising corners of the world and
      hear some choral yodeling as directed by Deborah Krauss Smith and to
      honor 4 yodelers who appear in the ground-breaking book YODELING IN
      DAIRYLAND one of whom was DJ-yodeler Martha Bernet and here the
      incredibly accomplished and charming Swiss-roots rockin' yodeling of
      BV. I got to meet all of them and both during and after this
      incredible event I was told by several people that "Not since JFK and
      Lawrence Welk came here has there been an event like this." I'll take
      that as a compliment worthy of being emblazoned on the back of my
      next yodel book!

      [8] "Stateless" on Stiff vinyl, 1978. The staccato, nervous-twitchy
      robotic vocals that characterized the new wave singing of late-70s
      and early-80s music is the most accomplished at being on the edge of
      hysteria and yet being in total controlŠ

      [9] "Lovebites" on Traumton <www.traumton.de> <www.erikastucky.com>.
      Friday night I went out. Went to see/hear ES. It was some-timely
      recommendation, ES-fan Squeezebox Toni couldn't go so I trekked there
      alone on bike to the new Bimhuis [intimate venue for inventive new
      music] located on the river Ij east of Central Station in Amsterdam.
      It is a glorious structure of simple elegance - light, view, steel
      and glass - where the Bimhuis maintains its precise inverse staging
      so it is music in the round with everyone looking down onto the stage
      and everyone having a good seat plus the excellent acoustics. This
      would alone be enough to make me sigh relief if it weren't for the
      fact that the place was packed and that I saw some familiar faces who
      took my advice and came and enjoyed it so much I did not have to
      refund their money or try to explain what I found so
      interesting/entertaining about Madame Stucky. I met her during the
      course of my yodel research and she serves as a perfect example of
      the notion that yodeling is far from dead and is not dying from
      shame. It is a valid tool of the vocalist trade something that
      extends the palette or one's reach the way a wrench works to tighten
      a nut. She was in fine form no doubt encouraged by the warm
      reception, the appreciation for her warped satire and pointed humor
      as well as her totally renewing and askew vocals as she covers
      questionable songs by the Police [she happens to like Roxanne, I
      don't - but coming out of her throat it couldn't have been delivered
      better by Edith Piaf] and Britney, some amazing Prince and some
      familiar standards as well as her own composition "Tipsy" which could
      have rolled off the pen of Johnny Mercer or Fats Waller or Tom Waits.
      The fact that this was her "Princess Tour" and that she sang a really
      atmospheric version of "La Paloma" made me think my daughter Paloma
      would have loved the show [the antics, hand gestures, strange voices,
      tuba tricks, trombone hambone] and suddenly friend Doreen leaned over
      and said she thought her daughter would really have liked this show.
      This is a compliment beyond compliments - appealing to intellectual
      post-jazz ears AND the tender kid-soft ears of children. She works in
      that grimy alleyway that passes between the jazz joint, the honky
      tonk, the beerhall, and the concert hall. She moved elegantly from
      one genre to another, from one extended vocal to another, hitting
      emotions that covered irreverence and tenderness in turn or
      simultaneously. She and excellent rhythm section comprised of Bertl
      Mütter [trombone] and Jon Sass [tuba] received 3 standing ovations
      and it is no small accomplishment to turn 2 of the [to me] unsexiest
      instruments into the brass equivalent of drum&bass. Had a nice long
      conversation with her after the show because the Bimhuis has that
      Dutch trademark of relative accessibility [short distance between
      star and public] and she gave me a DVD of her doing her piece "Dog
      Yodeling in the Kitchen" to be used at the 9 July Jodelfest [if it
      happens] at Het Buitenland, located between Schiphol airport and
      Nieuwe Meer.

      [10] "Like Minds" on PF Mentum <wwwpfmentum.com> is a great record.
      One of my faves of 2005. EH creeps up on you like some sylvan blond
      out of a forest of improv gadgetry and slowly starts to dissolve any
      hesitation and doubt [cd cover photo reveals her more as some kind of
      prim yuppie beauty] as you are taken in by her beguiling aptitude
      combined with a warmth and organic combination of tradition, of
      learnedness and head[less]first experimentation on vocals, piano,
      flute. She extends the haughty traditions of the instruments and
      forges a wonderful path of improvised new music with jazz and
      classical hints. This would certainly make my face and ears twitch
      with annoyance because too much improv has left audience adrift and
      outside onanistic tomfoolery and wanking - not here. Highly
      recommended.

      [11] "Folk Music from Italy" on Folkways, vinyl, 1956. Liner notes:
      "the words suggest that the 2 lovers shouldn't mind what mother says
      but do what she does."

      [12] "Bowmboï" on Nonesuch. Elegant vocals. "Kanou is that human
      attraction that teaches tolerance / Kanou is that amorous passion
      that binds ... / The stack of refuse is repugnant / No one wants to
      see it / But it is inexorably present..."

      [13] "Hell among the Yearlings" While working on a yodel compilation
      for Rough Guide it was suggested that maybe Gillian Welch would be a
      good addition as far as the modern hip factor of rich engaging vocals
      that go soulful, solemn, and touch the tender exposed nerves dragging
      at the bottom of hillbilly woefulness. It tunes into those Carter
      Family and Delmore Brothers and intense twangy mournful cries for
      help as we give into the temptations of the devilŠ GW is an
      incredibly gifted vocalist who does not betray any hipper-than-thou
      craftiness, no real winky-wink post-modern send-ups just blues
      dragged out and hung out to dry.

      [14] "When the Roses Bloom Again" on Spit & Polish
      <www.shoeshine.co.uk> <www.lauracantrell.com>. The songwriting and
      vocals are less woeful and sunnier than GW's with a brittle yet shiny
      knife blade pitch that to me recalls Peggy Seeger although the guitar
      work recalls the Byrds. She is not only a gifted singer-songwriter,
      she is also a DJ at WFMU, where I was a guest on her Radio Thrift
      Shop with Laura Cantrell on WFMU, Saturday May 9, noon to 3pm. Our
      second-hour conversation and yodel disc spinning is currently
      available at <www.wfmu.org/> in Radio Thrift Shop archives. This was
      an in-depth one-hour show with DJ and country/bluegrass recording
      artist Cantrell [Shoeshine, Matador] that concentrated on yodeling's
      influence on country music and on the Yodel event at the Bowery
      Poetry Club that evening.

      [15] "American Folksongs for Children" on Rounder <www.rounder.com>
      with Mike Seeger. I Met MS when I did a reading at the U. of
      Wisconsin Future of Folk Conference the same night MS had a musical
      conversation with author Bill Malone and then gave a great
      show-n-tell lecture on traditional instruments and how to play them
      and how they make soundŠ I bought this off MS for my daughter and it
      is instantly one of our faves because, for one thing, these are not
      cloying childish versions of kid's songs. They take kids seriouslyŠ

      [16] "Careless Love" on Rounder <www.rounder.com>. Amazing Canadian
      jazz vocalist who came to me at almost the same moment as my
      reappreciation of Gillian Welch. Both have a mournful richness that
      evokes the universal tortured human soul. I was in a Utrecht jazz
      record store when I heard this for the first time about 6 months ago.
      I was trying to place it - that's Billy Holiday but wait, she's
      singing a Leonard Cohen song, I though of Diane KrallŠ and ultimately
      I did what I have almost never done in my life - bought the record
      that was playing in the store. Incredibly good disc with a very
      ethereally adept jazz combo behind her although many of the songs do
      seem to have a similar backing arrangement to them but her dark
      earthmover vocals clear the field of any qualm and any other
      obstruction. Highly recommended.

      [17] "Western Serenade" on Western Serenade <www.lizmasterson.com>. I
      am not one for goofy rodeo shows, combining standards, cliches,
      clownish behavior with this obsequious obsession with the need to
      entertain the masses in their insatiable appetite to be almost
      perpetually under the soporific influence of their right to be
      entertained 24 hours per day. That is, until I met some of the cowboy
      entertainers - you know, yodelers with rope tricks and cowboy poetry
      and dubious jokes about cattle genitalia. Well, that all changed when
      I met Randy Erwin and then met LM & SB. There is a small hole of
      opportunity that is punched into the middle of the face called the
      mouth where - if done right - entertainment of a glib and glitzy
      nature can go throat and tonsil in hand with deep-felt emotional
      rendering. Laughter and giddiness does not preclude big deep
      emotions. I read with LM & SB in Boulder at the Center for the
      American West and then went out with master poet-yodeler Jack Collom,
      who despite oxygen tubes running out of his nose [emphysema from 40
      years of smoking] was able to do some glorious extended yodeling
      during the gig. His "Blue Heron / Blue Yodel" single is something to
      be reckoned with. But back to the after-event when me & JC & LM went
      out drinking. When a pitcher of vocal brew is ordered up you know
      some lifetimes is going to fall loose on the sticky table and indeed
      it did. Incredible night.

      [18] "Where Could You Take Me" on AMI, 1997. JL and former linesman
      and rhythm, mandolin player I met in Goshen Indiana at a yodel event
      of strange combinations: imagine a small progressive Mennonite
      college town in the middle of the flatlands where the people abide by
      3 zones and where I spent 3 days doing research on Mennonite yodeling
      with the help of the Mennonite Historical Library staff and the
      Mennonite Historical Society archivists and ended up discovering some
      crazy illuminating stuff. The reading was held in a downtown
      coffeehouse frequented by students and locals but this night we had a
      sizeable crowd that included many Mennonites who had never been in
      such an establishment. JL & PL entertained the crowd with their warm
      and accomplished playing and JL's incredibly charming yodeling that
      is as much lorelei serenade as anything else. After the main event
      [my reading and their performance] some actual Mennonite yodelers
      found their way to the stage and did some local Swiss-style Indiana
      yodeling. What a strange piece of rock we live on. We also appeared
      together on o Stateside with Charity Nebbe is a regional show on WUOM
      <michiganradio.org>, Michigan Public Radio. I was their guest on
      April 25 along with my yodeling companions Joyce "Michigan's Yodeling
      Sweetheart" and Phil Leonard, who consistently demonstrate why
      yodeling is not only fun but soulful, expressive and thriving as
      well. The show was pre-recorded in the Ann Arbor studios and will be
      broadcast Friday May 20, 1 PM and will then be presumably archived at
      WUOM - it can also be heard on WVGR 104.1 [Grand Rapids], WFUM 91.1
      [Flint], and WUOM 91.7 in Ann Arbor/Detroit. The archived show
      discusses YODEL-AY-EE-OOOO: THE SECRET HISTORY OF YODELING AROUND THE
      WORLD as well as the origins of yodeling and some strange and
      surprising samples of yodeling from areas of the world where you
      would not expect to hear yodeling. The show also features Joyce
      Leonard [and Phil]. she discusses yodeling from a practitioner's
      point of view. You will also hear some in-studio yodeling from Joyce.

      [19] "States" on Harvestworks <www.harvestworks.org>. Genius in a
      packet of laughs. She yodels in a Borscht Belt venue in outer space.
      Tender stories of real people. While in NY I met up again with one of
      my fave vocalists of all time, SH. She has reconquered the division
      that irritating demarcation between hi and lo, between serious and
      not, between funny and lofty that was imposed by the ever-uptight
      bourgeoisie in the 1800s that allowed them to be cordoned off by a
      picket fence of good taste garlanded with the barbwire of high
      purpose. She is that rare treat of extended abstract vocals that can
      effortlessly dive-bomb into low burlesque, bad jokes, questionable
      states of mind and then strafe roughly over Normalville rooftops in a
      swallow surge towards Š dare I say, vocals possessed of wings made of
      soul and sinew. We had some nice conversation and appeared together
      on Soundcheck with John Schaefer on WNYC [93.9 FM], New York City
      Public Radio, had me and vocalist Shelley Hirsch as his guests on
      Monday, May 2. The program "Giving a Shout Out to Yodelers" was a
      lively discussion of yodeling history and mystery and the countless
      patterns and regional variations of this age-old art form plus some
      surprising audio samples. Its physical dynamics - what a singer
      experiences - are discussed and demonstrated by one of the world's
      most gifted vocalists, Shelley Hirsch. Archived at
      <http://www.wnyc.org/shows/soundcheck/episodes/05022005>. It gives a
      vague idea that SH thinks a lot about the esoteric, the
      psycho-physiological and spirit-utility aspects of voice and yodelingŠ

      ~±~±~
      Prisoners of Conscience: Peace Doesn't Come Easily By Camilo Mejia
      Counterpunch via Interactivist Info Exchange <http://info.interactivist.net/>

      Just about a year a go I was tried by a special Court-martial at Fort
      Stewart, Georgia. The charge: desertion with the intent to avoid
      hazardous duty. My case received a lot of attention from the media,
      mainly because I was the first Iraq veteran to have been to combat,
      returned on a two-week furlough, and publicly refused to return to
      Iraq while denouncing the war as illegal, and who then surrendered
      himself to military authorities. For the first time since the
      invasion of Iraq the military had to deal with the delicate issue of
      public dissent within the ranks.

      The command at Fort Stewart restricted me to the base, and never
      allowed me to leave even to confer with my attorneys, and requests to
      travel with them to Florida, and to meet with them off the base, all
      to help them prepare a better case, were all denied. I was housed in
      a barracks building with about ten rooms, yet I was the only one
      there. Between my surrender and the Court-martial, reporters were
      told they could interview me off base, while I was told I could give
      interviews, but was prohibited from leaving the fort.

      On the day of my trial, access to the base was restricted to military
      personnel, my attorneys, and a few family members. Everyone else was
      directed to gate number three, but the signs leading to that gate
      were taken down during the three days of my trial. The entire block
      of the courthouse was barricaded, and there were civilian and
      military police officers patrolling the area, and they had trained
      dogs sniffing the area. Reporters were contained in a media center
      about a mile away from the courthouse, and everyone's computers,
      cameras, recording devices, and cell phones were confiscated prior to
      entering the courtroom.

      All of our pretrial motions were struck down, and many key witnesses
      and crucial pieces of evidence were not allowed in the caseŠ. Before
      the end of the trial, members of my unit had already been to my
      barracks room. When my relatives got to my quarters to claim my
      belongings, immediately after the sentencing, the room had been swept
      clean. But the raiders forgot to take the lock they cut in order to
      get to my wall-locker. My mother later used that lock in a press
      conference to show the military had packed my things even before they
      could know I was going awayŠ But not even a year after being sent to
      a confinement facility in Fort Sill, Oklahoma, where I spent nine
      months of a twelve-month sentence, I found myself in San Diego's 32nd
      Street Naval Station, where Petty Officer 3rd Class Pablo Paredes was
      being tried by a special Court-martial. The charges: Unauthorized
      Absence and Missing Movement.

      His case, like mine, received much attention, not because of the
      nature of his charges, but because on December 6th of last year,
      Pablo publicly denounced the war as criminal and illegal while
      refusing to board his ship, the USS Bonhomme Richard, before it left
      for the war in Iraq. The military judge found Pablo guilty of Missing
      Movement but not guilty of Unauthorized Absence, and even though the
      sentence included two months of hard labor and three months of
      restriction within the base, Pablo received no jail time, and no
      punitive discharge from the Navy. The same day of Pablo's
      Court-martial, a military judge from Fort Stewart, found that Army
      Sergeant Kevin Benderman, another war resistor, had been sent to
      trial by a biased hearing officer, and temporarily dropped the
      general Court-martial against him, a type of trial that could have
      sent him to jail for up to five yearsŠ These findings represent
      important accomplishments for the antiwar movement, as they seem to
      indicate that military authorities are handling public dissent within
      the ranks with a bit more caution, as more members of the military
      are speaking out against the occupationŠ.

      Service men and women should know that expert testimony at my trial
      as well as at Pablo's trial, was that the invasion and occupation of
      Iraq are illegal under international, domestic, and military law. At
      my trial, professor Francis Boyle of the University of Illinois,
      testified that the Iraqi invasion and its aftermath is a crime
      against humanity, and a violation of Army Field Manual 27-10, which
      incorporates the Geneva Conventions. At Pablo's trial, Professor
      Marjorie Cohn from San Diego's Thomas Jefferson School of Law,
      testified that the war in Iraq violates the United Nations Charter,
      which authorizes the use of force only in self defense, or with the
      Security Council's approvalŠ.

      In a time when peaceful protesters are being put in cages, or free
      speech zones, in a time when international law is being ignored or
      circumvented in order to conduct and justify torture, in a time when
      schools are being forced to make their students' files available to
      the war machine, in a time when the fear and pain of the nation are
      being used to fabricate support for a criminal war of imperial
      domination, it becomes imperative that members of the armed forces
      act upon their principles.

      An empire cannot survive without an imperial military, a military
      whose members do not question the orders of their superiors, a
      military whose members who choose to refuse, do so quietly to save
      their skins, a military whose members rather die and kill against
      their moral judgments than question the authority of their commandŠ.

      Camilo E. Mejia is former prisoner of conscience, Iraq war veteran,
      war resister and member of Iraq Veterans Against the War. Camilo's
      conscientious objector application is still pending. He served nine
      months in confinement for refusing to return to Iraq after a two-week
      leave.

      ~±~±

      Amerika Goes Wild! By Ed Naha, June 10

      A new government-sponsored study, headed by Harvard professor Ronald
      Kessler, has concluded that one-quarter of all Americans are
      technically mentally ill, with a quarter of those having disorders so
      serious that it disrupts their day-to-day functions. (So THAT's why
      Fox is so popular.)

      Although parallel studies in 27 other countries haven't been
      completed, the new numbers suggest that the U.S. is poised to rank
      No. 1 globally for mental illnessŠ. I'd personally like to thank this
      Administration for giving me headaches during my feeble attempts to
      stack up reality vs. the cartoons constantly playing in Bush's brain.
      Bush got the ball rolling a couple of days back with a purposely
      truncated press conferenceŠ When queried about the infamous Downing
      Street Memo, (which more than suggests that Bush had plans to destroy
      Iraq months before yelling "bomb's away,") the President eloquently
      replied: "Well, I -- you know, I read kind of the characterizations
      of the memo, particularly when they dropped it out in the middle of
      his (Blair's) race. I'm not sure who 'they dropped it out' is, but --
      I'm not suggesting that you all dropped it out there. And somebody
      said, well, you know, we had made up our mind to go to use military
      force to deal with Saddam. There's nothing farther from the truth. My
      conversation with the Prime Minister was, how could we do this
      peacefully, what could we do. And this meeting, evidently, that took
      place in London happened before we even went to the United Nations --
      or I went to the United Nations. And so it's -- look, both us of
      didn't want to use our military. Nobody wants to commit military into
      combat. It's the last option. The consequences of committing the
      military are -- are very difficult. The hardest things I do as the
      President is to try to comfort families who've lost a loved one in
      combat. It's the last option that the President must have -- and it's
      the last option I know my friend had, as well. And so we worked hard
      to see if we could figure out how to do this peacefully, take a --
      put a united front up to Saddam Hussein, and say, the world speaks,
      and he ignored the world....He made the decision. And the world is
      better off without Saddam Hussein in power."

      ŠOn February 16th, 2001, when in office a scant month, Bush
      authorized United States and British war planes to drop 28 cluster
      bombs - each equipped with 145 anti-armor and anti-personnel
      incendiary bomblets - on the outskirts of Baghdad, well north of the
      33rd parallel, or the so-called "No Fly Zone." Most of the bombs
      missed their targets, despite the Pentagon's claims of pinpoint hits
      by the satellite-guided weapons on so called illegal Iraqi "radar
      sites."

      At the same truncated press conference Bush had this to say about
      global warming. "We need to know more about it. It's a lot easier to
      solve when you know more about it." Well said. Whilst our President
      was pondering the wonders of science, "The New York Times" revealed
      that a White House official with ties to the oil industry has been
      repeatedly editing government climate reports to play down global
      warming issues and "The Guardian" noted that new State Department
      documents show that Bush's decision to bail out of the Kyoto global
      warming treaty was partly a result of pressure exerted by ExxonMobil.

      "Tomorrow," Bush noted, "I'm going to go to Columbus, Ohio, to talk
      about the renewal of the Patriot Act, which is an important piece of
      legislation..." About the same time Bush was paying homage to our
      zip-locked homeland, it was revealed that, in April, a zany named
      Gregory Despres arrived at the U.S.-Canadian border crossing at
      Calais, Maine, carrying a homemade sword, a hatchet, a knife, brass
      knuckles and a chainsaw, apparently stained with blood. After an
      interview with U.S. customs agents, his toys were confiscated and he
      was allowed into our "homeland." The next day, in Despres' Canadian
      hometown, the decapitated body of Despres' 74-year-old next-door
      neighbor and the thoroughly punctured body of the neighbor's wife
      were found in their home. Š He's subsequently been arrested in
      Massachusetts, where he told police he's part of NASA and was on his
      way to a Marine Base in KansasŠ.

      As to his entering the country with the kind of weaponry usually
      reserved for slasher films? Bill Anthony, a spokesman for U.S.
      Customs and Border Protection, put it this way. "Nobody asked us to
      detain him. Being bizarre is not a reason to keep somebody out of
      this country or lock them up....We are governed by laws and
      regulations, and he did not violate any regulations."

      Bush also [pointed out that:] " the economic policy is working. I
      mean, after all, more people work in America today than ever before
      in our nation's history." This was one day after General Motors
      announced it was going to ax 25,000 workers. On the plus side?
      Wal-Mart can always use skilled "greeters." D'oh. No wonder we all
      feel like we're going nutsŠ.

      ~±~±
      International Mental Health Survey Finds U.S. Has High Rate of Mental Illness,
      Low Rate of Treatment Compared to Other Countries

      Harvard University Press Release May 7, 2003--The United States has a
      higher prevalence and lower treatment rate of serious mental illness
      than a number of other developed countries, according to a study
      published in a special edition on international health care in the
      May/June issue of the policy journal Health Affairs.

      Treatment was also to be more strongly related to the ability to pay
      and less to need for care in the United States than the other
      countries. The study analyzed data from community surveys with more
      than 22,000 respondents in Canada, Chile, Germany, the Netherlands,
      and the United States. All these countries, except the United States,
      have universal health insurance.

      Despite differences in treatment, researchers found remarkably
      similar high proportions of the population with mental disorders (17
      to 29 percent), early age of onset (mostly in childhood through the
      early adult years), high rates of chronic mental illness, and high
      levels of adverse effects on jobs, marriages, and other aspects of
      life, said corresponding author Ronald Kessler, professor of health
      care policy at Harvard Medical School's Department of Health Care
      Policy.

      "The consistency of these patterns across a wide variety of countries
      is striking," Kessler said. "Issue number one is that we can't wait
      as long as we do to get young people into treatment. Issue number two
      is that we have to do a better job of making sure patients are
      treated with the best available therapies once we manage to get them
      into treatment."

      In all countries, young, poorly educated males with serious mental
      disorders are the least likely to receive treatment. The report
      suggests that school-based interventions in low-income school
      districts may help reach these young men to prevent progression from
      mild to more serious disorders. Early intervention is uncommon but
      important, according to the report. "People with mild mental
      disorders, if left untreated, have a significant risk of future
      serious outcomes, such as attempted suicide, hospitalization, and
      work disability," the authors write.

      "Most people with serious mental disorders have conditions that start
      in childhood or adolescence, but do not get treatment until
      adulthood," Kessler said. "The problems are usually quite serious by
      the time they go for professional help. In many cases, these people
      have dug themselves into quite a hole before getting treatment Š."

      Kessler said he and his co-authors were also struck by the inadequate
      treatments in this country [US]. "This involves both medical care
      that fails to conform with accepted treatment guidelines, such as a
      homeopathic dose of a psychopharmacological medication prescribed by
      a family doctor, or care in some other sector of the treatment
      system, such as self-help or religious counseling, that has not been
      shown to be effective in treatment clinically significant mental
      disorders."Š

      ~±~±


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