Archive for July 29th, 2011

by lizard

I was tinkering around with a poem a few days ago, changing line breaks and trimming off some unnecessary words. I was doing this on the computer, and when I was done, hit save. Instantly all evidence of my revision disappeared.

As a writer, I’m interested in the process of writing, the craft. I’ve been lucky to have had great workshop experiences at UM (thank you Joanna Klink!) and facilitated a few myself (outside the University), and based on feedback from those critical environments, have almost always revised and produced a better poem. Some of that revision is caught on rough drafts, but most of it gets discarded or recycled.

If I was a poet skilled enough for scholars to spend lengthy dissertations analyzing, not having early copies of poems occludes the process by which I make decisions about how a poem is formed upon the page. Personally, I’ve learned a lot about poetry as craft by comparing the finished product of some well known poems with their earlier incarnations (Ezra Pound’s fingerprints on Eliot’s The Wasteland, for example).

And that got me thinking about what else may be getting lost as our modes of communication continues evolving.

This week’s LWPS looks at letters, truly a diminished form of communication in the age of smart phones and instantaneous global communication. Letters are the more refined comment threads of the previous centuries, yet even then, as evident by the 3rd letter I selected, there are similarities between the correspondences of the past and the atomized fragments of communication from the tortured present. Enjoy. Continue Reading »

feel safe now?

by problembear

this article ran accross my twitter timeline a little while ago and i am curious.

excerpt from above article:

“The Air Force, in response to a report published by Truthout earlier this week, has pulled a Christian-themed training session that used a quote from an ex-Nazi SS officer and numerous passages from the New and Old Testament to teach missile officers about the morals and ethics of launching nuclear weapons.”

how’s that make you feel?

A. safe

B. a little creeped out

C. holy crap!

if you chose C you would be right.

imagine if some newly recruited christian identity movement dude who thinks christian fanaticism is swell like this guy were at the controls of the world’s most powerful weapon 200 feet deep beneath the wheatfields of montana late at night…….

now you can be scared. wth is with our air force training program?

by problembear

i have a deep affinity for the bonner area. it is the place i first lived when i moved to missoula. i lived there when champion was running 4 shifts. then they sold it to stimson. stimson closed it for good several years ago and laid off the last few dozen workers last year.  the millsite sits there empty and forlorn. over 1200 good paying jobs have been lost since 1985. i feel for that area. tough people. good people who deserve better. and the place sits empty long after the governor came and shook some developers hand who made big promises. remember? dick king said there were big plans to revive jobs in the area. so far nothing. and for the longest time nobody has heard anything from the developer about it. and when things get quiet i figure that isn’t a good sign.

in 2008 a developer by the name of scott cooney came along and promised big things for the poor people of Bonner. yesterday’s article in the Missoula Independent seems to put an end to those promises for now. and there seems to be a bit of skulduggery afoot….. here is an excerpt but you should read the entire article……..

On the heels of that bankruptcy filing, a trustee representing Blackfoot Land and Water creditors filed a lawsuit last month alleging Cooney mismanaged company funds, including tenant deposits, for his own personal gain. “Sometime during the years 2008 and 2010, Cooney began to use Blackfoot’s account as his personal account,” the suit states. “The amount withdrawn from Blackfoot’s accounts for Mr. Cooney’s personal use and/or that of his other business entities was a minimum of $560,898.51 and possibly substantially more than that.”

j-girl did an excellent story on this back in 2008.

“Recession” Economy lost $400 billion more than first thought in 2007-2009


Here’s the takeaway, it’s quiet simple: Revised figures from the Bureau of Economic Analysis were released today, showing that the amount of economic contraction (recession) as reflected by a lowering Gross Domestic Product (GDP) was far greater than had been known at the time and during the last three years’ efforts to ameliorate the “Great Recession”.

Recession is basically measured by an economy’s contraction in GDP over a period of quarters. The BEA revisions released today reflected that GDP contraction from 4th quarter 2007 to 2nd quarter 2009 (right after Obama took office) was a cumulative (negative) 5.1%, not 4.1%. In other words the economy lost about $400 billion more in GDP than was previously realized.

To put that in perspective, the “stimulus” only included about $350 billion in direct spending (the rest was tax breaks and aid to local and state governments).

So there you have it: the stimulus spending was less than the margin of error (as shown by its revisions) of BEA. How could the stimulus have worked? It was far inadequate to meet the task of taking up the slack in the $14 trillion/year economy, which was its “purpose”.

Here’s a graph of the revised GDP figures on which I’ve overlaid the 3 year average loss in productivity, and revised cumulative recession figures.

BEA excerpts after the jump.
Continue Reading »

Why Can’t We All…


…just admit we’re assholes and move on?

Let me start if off… I, CFS, am an insensitive asshole. I’m not apologizing for being an asshole, just admitting it. The wild west of blogging is great because it allows you to be an asshole if you want. I get out all my asshole tendencies here rather than in my day-to-day interactions, and it feels good.

It’s easy to get caught up in calling other people assholes in the blogosphere, in fact it seems to be something that most of us are very good at. When ego is the main thing on display we degrade the debate to a point of childish tit-for-tat. So do we want to continue to try and cannibalize each other’s blogs debating who “represents” true democratic principles? People will figure that part out on their own.

A Fantasy, starring JC the strawman; Rob, whom rusts in place; a hallucinating jwygirl; and Mark the cowardly lion

So… let us skip arm-in-arm towards an Emerald City of hope, promise, and full employment delivered by a magical wizard… forever leaving the land of the small minded behind and banishing the Tea Party to a puddle of slime whose best feature is a prominent wort.

As someone once said…

“there needs to be an after the fight digital drink together.”

Happy Friday… Enjoy a drink and relax.

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