Sunday, August 20, 2006

U.S. Rice Supply Contaminated: "The variety, known as LLRICE 601, is endowed with bacterial DNA that makes rice plants resistant to a weedkiller made by the agricultural giant Aventis. Johanns said Bayer had not finished the process of getting LLRICE 601 approved for marketing before dropping the project years ago. But the company did complete the process for two other varieties of rice with the same gene. And although neither of those were marketed, he said, their approval offers reassurance that 601 is probably safe, too."

Probably safe? PROBABLY? This is the whole problem with GMO crops. NOBODY KNOWS FOR SURE! And this is just the stuff we KNOW about. How many other test alterations have passed into the general supply? Bayer dropped this particular variety 5 years ago. I wonder why? Do you think it's worth looking into? We're only talking about our FOOD SUPPLY.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

The Matador (2005)***
Enjoyable comedy/drama about an aging hit man who suddenly realizes he would like a friend. Interesting, crisply directed and well-acted, especially Pierce Brosnan as the hit man. If he keeps this up people are going to forget about Bond and Remington Steele.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Cachè (2005)****
An examination of guilt and how the human mind deals with it. Or doesn't deal with it. Philosophical, metaphorical, allegorical, open-ended narrative all at the same time. Well done.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

DREW SHARP: Martz commands attention by getting close to the action:
"Martz quaffs attention like it was ice water on a hot day. Although he's not the architect of this newest Lions' new direction, he knows he's the star. All eyes gravitated to the rudimentary initial elements of Martz's offensive scheme and his interaction with his players. And the actual head coach? Rod Marinelli happily hid himself within the masses on the sideline, adapting to his new life as a first-time head coach. He's perfectly comfortable with Martz dominating the spotlight. Those closest to the situation insist that Marinelli is devoid of all ego and that's a necessity when working with a megalomaniac like the self-anointed offensive wizard. Marinelli just wants to win."

Where does one begin with such an idiot like Drew Sharp? He is a perfect example of the absolute WORST type of sports "journalist", the know-it-all-who-never-played-anything. What a loser. And to take a guy like Mike Martz, one of the more successful men in his sport, and just skewer him with all sorts of vicious and unfounded attacks is nothing short of cowardice. Megalomaniac? Self-anointed? Where does this come from? Was Sharp denied an interview or two or something? Clearly this "man" has issues and needs that have not been met. And to say that Marinelli "just wants to win" implies that Martz doesn't care about winning as long as he gets the attention.

All this because he wants to coach from the sidelines during the game?

Then based on that reasoning, Charlie Weiss, ex-offensive coordinator for the New England Patriots, is also a megalomaniac and self-anointed wizard who craves attention. Also dozens of other OC's around the league. Why can't these people just report on the game and leave the personal issues aside? Or maybe that would be too much work for them?

Friday, August 11, 2006

Powell's Books looming large in the Bay Area
"Used-book sellers in the region say it's become increasingly difficult to compete with Powell's because of its vast inventory -- more than 4 million titles in stock -- and the company's ability to undercut rivals' prices. They also say that as more used-book stores go under amid economic hardship, Powell's will only grow more formidable as it snaps up huge quantities of additional books at fire-sale prices, often as low as 15 cents on the dollar. "Powell's has been doing this all over the country," said Allan Milkerit, a San Francisco bookseller specializing in used and rare volumes. "But they've been especially active in the Bay Area because of the number of used books here." "

The great thing about the internet is that it is available to everyone. Yes, Powell's had a jump by recognizing the potential of being online early on. But if these independent used book stores would get together online and offer their inventories in a central shopping experience, then maybe they COULD compete with Powell's. The thing is, the investment in such an approach is not that cost intensive. I would imagine their current clientele would appreciate being able to peruse the inventory for dozens of stores in one place, reserve a copy, have it mailed to them, etc.
Key powers agree deal to end Israel-Hizbollah war - Yahoo! News:
"An Israeli political source said Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was reviewing the draft resolution. Earlier in the day, Israel ordered an expansion of its ground offensive and said it would press ahead with the campaign if it was unhappy with any deal."

So Israel will just violate another UN resolution if they don't get what they want. And don't forget that the US could force a ceasefire at any time if they so desired. But then, since we are in a permanent war with "Islamo-fascists" what's the rush?

Friday, August 04, 2006

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (2005) ****
Robert Downey, Jr. in a role he was born to play, Val Kilmer at the top of his game, and Michelle Monahgan who keeps up with them pretty well, form the core of this snappy, clever, funny meta-noir. Sharply written by Shane Black in his directorial debut, this one will be considered a classic years from now.