Friday, December 29, 2006

Just Another CIA Agent

They say Saddam Hussein has been executed. I wouldn't even believe it if I saw the corpse with my own eyes.

I have just one question: why do some criminals get "executed" for their crimes against humanity, and others live a full life of luxury for it? Why do the Kissingers, Nixons, Reagans, Gorbachevs, Thatchers, Bushes, Clintons, Pinochets, Rumsfelds, Cheneys, Rices, Musharrafs, Khomeinis, Khameneis, Khatamis, Rafsanjanis and countless other criminals of world history get away with murder even as we embark upon the year 2007?
Saddam's greatest crime was that he did the CIA's bidding against his own people and his neighbors. Being "executed" by the US government and its present underlings in Iraq is hardly a case of justice being served.

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Nationalism is Humanity

................................................(Click on the maps for link to higher resolution)

This, friends, is the future of the "Middle East" -- all of those nations stretching across the north of Africa through the Persian Gulf, Afghanistan and Pakistan. This is the plan that has been implemented and will reach fruition when this Wart on Terror is over, according to the tiny elite of overseers who decide the fate and fare of most of the rest of us.

The Cold War lasted 50 years and wasn't even a war: no blood was shed. The Wart on Terror has officially lasted just 5 years now and millions have already been killed. For this "map" to reach fruition, millions more of your family, friends, neighbors, kin must too be killed.

What can you and I do? The only hope for the future of our world is in the Internet. Use this powerful military tool to effect change by communicating to others, by passing on information, by opining, by being a source of news for yourself and others. Don't rely on mainstream media: these are bought organizations who churn out propaganda for their buyers and this includes any and every media organization you think you can trust.

Finally, do not be a Saddam Hussein -- this horrible individual was the key weapon that foreigners used to bring this region of the world to the frighteningly victimized position that it is in right now -- under no circumstances form an alliance big or small with any representative of a government or powerful entity who turns you against your kin and your neighbors. Britain and the United States are notorious for this, but they are not alone. The former colonizers of the world are the imperialists of today and they buy and sell the low-life traitors like Saddam who unlock their agendas for inhumanity in our countries. Identify these agents in your countries and use the Internet to speak out against them. In Iran, we have Rafsanjani at the top of the list, but there are others who work in embassies throughout the world, who are heads of corporations, politicians, journalists, and above all, cowards.

Scholars may tell you that nationalism is dead -- yes, the Western definition of it as a supreme allegiance to one nation is, but nations are not confined to borders in our world so do not fall for such rhetoric: be nationalist!

Be someone who cares for his or her neighbors for the mere reason that they have suffered the ills of colonialism and modern-day imperialism along with you. Feel the pain of the Iraqis. Feel the pain of the Kurds. Feel the pain of the Turks. Feel the pain of all of the Uzbeks, Pashtuns, and Baluchis. Feel the pain of the Sunnis, the Shias. Feel the pain of the Jews, the Christians and all the religions of your neighborhood. Religion is a political concoction that will wither like a weed against the antidote of a common humanity. Feel the pain of your extended kin and feel it with the intensity of a nationalism that knows no borders. Instill it in your friends, your lovers and your families.

We are all one people -- this duality, this enmity, this polarization that the imperialists are trying to impose on us is nothingness -- it does not exist. Do not follow blindly, but most of all, do not remain silent. Silence is the sanctuary of fools and traitors. Silence is the entrapment of your humanity. Do not let anyone scare you into silence. The mere act of sending an email, of forwarding a piece of knowledge or information releases you from this burden of silence. Exercise your free will, exercise your self-respect and your sense of humanity. Do not silence your mind: educate yourself by reading, reading, reading!

Today's borderless nationalism is strength and love and humanity. Do not let anyone convince you otherwise.

The imperialists' redrawing of the maps of our lands would be irrelevant if borders meant nothing to us -- this is their cage for controlling us and ripping the threads of our common humanity. But what they don't know is that their maps have never meant anything to any of the people whose lives have coincided with the borders of these fabricated nations. From East to West, North to South, the former colonizers manipulated the map of the Earth with the mere scrawl of a pen. The borders they drew throughout the world only made sense to their need to control us, our lives, our resources, our futures.

Today's imperialists can draw and redraw these meaningless lines -- if we stand together against them, our blood will not flow with their ink. Thanks to the Internet, the powerless are a dying breed and we ourselves will redraw our own maps as and when we see fit.

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Thursday, December 28, 2006

Gerald R Who?

At least CNN is good for one thing: as a link to a completely ludicrous "factual" report. Yes, CNN, along with a cacophany of other meaningless propaganda outlets (read: most of the mainstream press anywhere in the world where English ancestry prevails in the population -- hmm...I'll have to come up with something better once the Hispanics --bless them-- finally take over the majority in the US) has come out this week saying that Gerald "R for Reject" Ford was the only ever unelected President of the United States. Uh, no. That dubious honor was snatched two-fold by the current Resident of the United States, his heil-ness Herr Bushler.

Ford -- real name Leslie Lynch King, Jr. -- really accomplished only one thing in his life: outliving any other president in US history. Though, much like his presidency, this had nothing to do with achievement. The only true loss here is that little ol' Leslie was one of the few remaining people who knew exactly what truly happened to JFK on November 22, 1963 -- he was, after all, head (and, until 2 days ago, only living member) of the Warren Commission and decades later admitted to lying on some major facts in that commission's report.

One wonders what kind of "people" die without divulging useful secrets -- obviously, something powerfully sinister is at play here.


Thursday, December 21, 2006

Winter Solstice Iranian Style!

December 21st is the Winter Solstice -- the longest night of the year -- and it has been celebrated by Iranians for millennia. The fesitivity is essentially rooted in an appreciation of nature and despite various religious movements in Iran, including the present Islamic one, this culture has not been effaced.

Shab-e Yalda (the Syrian Christian term) or Shab-e Cheleh as it is called in Persian is a time to be around family and loved ones to partake of the anar (pomegranate), gerdoo (walnuts), badoom (almonds), hendooneh (watermelon) and other fruits of the season, to listen to music, to smoke ghelyoon (waterpipe) and sit around a fire and enjoy the very long night in togetherness. Basically, it's a good ol' time!

Shab-e Cheleh Pirooz! Shab-e Yalda Mobarak!

-- The Saccharinist

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Bushler Seeks More Blood


Bushler has today announced that he is setting the ball in motion to kill thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands of more Iraqis. Yes, he's going to send more Hispanic, Black and lower-middle class White Americans -- also known as the US Army -- to Iraq as part of his new plan to not have a new plan in Iraq. That's right, the vampire is seekin' young blood to do his biddin'...

Which reminds me, for any of you out there who still think Iran is worried about a US attack -- think again. Another chance for these martyr-worshippers to re-create the highly successful shahid culture of the Iran-Iraq War is nothing short of a God-send for extending the Islamic Regime of Iran -- a regime whose lifeblood has gotten a much-needed revival jolt thanks to the US war in Iraq.

It is an unbelievable commentary of shame on those governments -- also known as "the West" -- who claim to be democracies, who claim to have respect for human rights, who even have the political and economic power to make a difference in this world but who knowingly stand by and let the Iraqi genocide continue, amongst other major humanitarian crimes being committed in broad daylight today. "The West" in its indifference to the US and British governments is nothing short of a criminal, too. Fifty years from now, we'll be studying Bushler and Bliar and the entire "Coalition Against Terror" in our school textbooks and learning about how evil they were and how nobody did anything to stop them. Funny how the "nobody" is the same then as it was now.

I believe that's why the UN was created in the first place -- to make sure such crimes do not occur again. Except, on the contrary, even more crimes and genocides have occurred since the inception of the UN than before it. But what do you expect when to get to the top of that organization you have to be a bumbling two-faced, immoral, idiot like Kofi Annan who doesn't even have the decency to condemn a crime when he sees it with his own two eyes. Wonder if he would have been more apt to open his greedy mouth if he didn't have a cushy home in Manhattan, USA.

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Too Cruel for School

This, dear friends, is one of many of the faces that will launch a million tears someday down the line in history when the Islamic Regime of Iran is finally replaced by a secular constitutional government for the first time in its history.

This remnant of seventh century stagnation is none other than the President of the University of Tehran -- one of the most prestigious universities in the world, boasting a student body that despite all odds, is carrying Iran through the 21st century. He is the first cleric president of this revered institution. Let us hope he is the last.

This, too, dear friends, is the reason why the clergy are a danger to everyone, including themselves, why an apparent member of society such as Khomeini would be so indifferent to other members of society that when asked by a reporter what he was feeling upon returning to Iran on 1 February, 1979 after decades of exile, could only muster a mumble through his beard: "hichi" (nothing). The clergy everywhere in the world, whether they be Muslims or Catholics or Buddhists or Jews or anything can and should never be expected to know anything of our world, let alone how to guide us in it, since they've never experienced it.

People like this guy, like all the priests of the Vatican, the monks of Tibet, and the rabbis of Jerusalem are confined, from a very early age, not only to the education system of the seminaries and madressehs and monasteries but to the isolated life within the four-walls of these institutions. In short, they could memorize holy books front to back and never have a fundamental sense of the practical lives of anyone who lives in normal society. Their advice, their counsel, their knowledge is meaningless because it lacks empathy -- empathy which is derived from living with and learning to love one's neighbor -- something these people are never exposed to.

It is a crime against society that these people are allowed to be indoctrinated in these confines. It should be a mandatory law of all societies that even clerics -- ESPECIALLY clerics -- should be required to be educated in a public schooling system from the age of 5 until 18, just like everybody else. Clerics, of all people, need to know what real life is like if they intend to devote their entire lives to improving it.

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Monday, December 18, 2006

Binh Danh: Art Imitates Vietnam

Well, the Saccharinist has always had a soft spot for the Vietnamese -- they were, after all, the first nation to bring the mighty mighty U.S. army to its knees, though they paid and are still paying a hefty price for it. Binh Danh is a 29-year-old artist from Vietnam whose family eventually settled in the U.S. I came across his artwork in a magazine and found it to be astoundingly intelligent creativity.

Danh basically prints out negatives of old photographs from Vietnam and renders them onto living plant leaves through a simple but brilliant process which he's developed himself that exploits photosynthesis in plants . The result is leaves with portraits on them. His artwork is currently on display at the Haines Gallery in San Francisco, California. More of his works can be found here.


Sunday, December 17, 2006

The BBC Foreign Service Strikes Again

The BBC -- a well-known supporter of and at least once in Iran's history a direct and actual instigator of antidemocratic efforts in Iran (nobody can ever forget the Mossadegh coup) -- has today, again, shown its true alliance in the battle to save Iran from corruption and imperialism: right down there with the criminals themselves. The BBC's outright support of Rafsanjani -- most obviously perpetrated through the excessive column inches they afford to this known anti-Iran agent -- was back in full stride today to record Rafsanjani's election "win" in elections to the Assembly of Experts. As usual, the BBC is referring to Rafsanjani as a "reformist" which, as we all know is code for "one who is weak and collaborates with established powers in Iran and the West by claiming that Islam is compatible with modern democracy" -- this is as opposed to those who are against clerical rule in any form, and who truly wish Iran to have an actual democracy that has separation of mosque and state.

That's right, Rafsanjani, this thief and corruption warlord lost the 2005 Presidency, but gained something better and with actual power: entrance to a top government body that advises the Supreme Spiritual Leader (aka. the Supreme Feeder) in his inhumane activities against Iran and Iranian interests.

For the record, Rafsanjani is and has been for the last 30 years one of the West's (i.e. the UK and US's) top representative for their interests in Iran -- interests which always have and will be completely contradictory to the well-being of Iran and Iranians. For its part, the US has been less careful in recent years to hide this relationship, most recently manifested in USA Today's bizarre campaign coverage of Rafsanjani during the 2005 election in which they did numerous profiles and news stories extolling a guy most Americans could care less about.

As most Iranians have come to learn in the last 30 years, the mullahs have no difficulty in taking sides against Iran and Iranians because they do not in fact have any allegiance to Iran: their primary allegiance has and always will be to any benefactor which keeps them funded and continues their existence. The vast majority of the Iranian people have never been the primary or even secondary benefactors to the clergy -- it has always been the wealthy or the elite, including the monarchy and foreigners with interests in Iran.

The BBC World Service is the BBC branch in charge of "media management" throughout the world. For example, the BBC Persian Service has, just as its counterpart in the US through the Voice of America (and its most recent manifestation in Radio Farda), always been an arm of the Foreign Ministry.The various international languages in which the BBC broadcasts are essentially tools for communicating British government propaganda to people throughout the world -- but it's not as straightforward as that. The propaganda is not always overt and is mainly achieved over time as people come to turn to the BBC because their own state media is insufficient, outwardly biased or non-existent (in almost all cases the reason for this weak media is that British, and now US, backed leadership in most of these nations has deterred democratic efforts in these countries.

The BBC Foreign Service, as it should be called, is a media operation set up with the explicit aim of conveying two critical propaganda to Iranians (and other nationalities): the idea that the "West" is a wonderful haven of democratic value and freedom of expression, unlike their countries AND that the false idea that the "West" is doing everything it can to improve these nations.

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Saturday, December 16, 2006

Legal Injection

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Out of no where and with very little media coverage, the states of California and Florida in the US have this week deemed capital punishment "unconstitutional." For now, that is. The problem, really, is how Jeb "I'm smarter but was passed up for Prez cuz my name isn't George" Bush and Arnie "Ich bin Nazi" Shschwaartszinaeygre can find a way around the pesky faults in the lethal injection system -- since in both of their states it has publicly failed at least once (experts have come forward saying that there is a high chance that Step 1 in the lethal injection process is not actually numbing the victim so the pain of Steps 2 and 3 is being felt) to be (a) humane or more importantly for their cause (b) effective killing devices.

Sadly, this is all too late for Tookie.

This brings us to the whole question of "humanity" in regards to capital punishment. It is a clear indication of the weakness of the American constitution that a little bit of legal mumbo jumbo can pass as democratic and just. How humane is knowing the exact time, date, and method of your impending demise? Not at all. The mental and emotional torture of this significant fact is inhumane beyond belief, made only more gruesome by tragicomic details such as a "last meal" and choice of audience members.

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Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Grameen Bank Saves Women

Taslima Begum (r), a Board member of the Grameen Bank and a former borrower herself, stands next to Muhammad Yunus, 2006 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate. (Source: Norwegian Nobel Institute)

Democracy Now is this week broadcasting parts of the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony, including the speech made by winner Muhammad Yunus. There are some elements to this man's achievement which are remarkable and worthy of reiteration:

-Grameen means "village" in Bengali -- this is the bank for villagers and other very poor people in Bangladesh

-Yunus himself is the founder of the hugely beneficial micro-credit system of banking and loans which has been duplicated, in his own words, "in almost every country in the world"

-Grameen Bank have over 7 million"borrowers-cum-owners" of which 97% are women in over 73,000 villages in Bangladesh!

-Yunus presented shocking details of the world's income distribution:

  • 94% of the world's income goes to 40% of the population

  • 60% of people live on only 6% of the world's income

  • half of the world population lives on only $2 a day

  • over 1 billion people live on less than $1 a day

-Just to put things into perspective and place shame on the US and its largely ignorant taxpayers: "Till now over $ 530 billion has been spent on the war in Iraq by the USA alone."

-"Since [Grameen Bank] introduced them in 1984, housing loans have been used to construct 640,000 houses. The legal ownership of these houses belongs to the women themselves. We focused on women because we found giving loans to women always brought more benefits to the family."

-Helping the poor doesn't make you poor, too: "In a cumulative way the bank has given out loans totaling about US $6 billion. The repayment rate is 99%. Grameen Bank routinely makes profit."

-58% of Grameen Bank's borrowers "have crossed the poverty line."

-There are 85,000 beggars who are borrowers, "About 5,000 of them have already stopped begging completely. Typical loan to a beggar is $12."

-Yunus has proposed a new business model called a "social business" which will "produce desired social results cost-effectively and efficiently" while also making a profit. This basically is a business model for socially-conscious young people throughout the world, but especially young people who are wealthy or come from "rich countries" who want to make a difference in the world but also want to have a career and good income of their own. For more information on this, read the "Free Market Economy" and "Grameen's Social Business" segments of Yunus's speech and check out the website for the Grameen Foundation.


Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Oldest Daughter of Slaves Dies

Lizzie Bolden (not to be confused, as I did for a moment with the infamous axe-murderer Lizzie Borden) lost her title as the oldest living person yesterday when she died at the age of 116 years and 118 days.

This woman was born in 1890! Her life spanned 3 centuries! And what always struck me as unbelievable was that a child of slaves was still alive in America today: Bolden's parents were slaves (!!) who only became free as a result of the end of the Civil War in 1865.

Just imagine the amazing stories this woman could have told us! Just imagine if she had taken the time, in her old age, to write some of them down or dictate them, or somehow give meaning in context to the breadth of her life. She was a living piece of history who could have offered what absolutely no one else can today: first-hand accounts of the aftermath of Reconstruction!

I guess, to be honest, that's why she lived so long: she didn't trouble herself with such concerns and details.
Rest in peace, Lizzie, at least there's one record you left behind: Guiness World Record for Oldest Living Person.


Blair the Bigot Strikes Again

In today's installation of Hypocritic Rhetoric from the Former British Empire, we offer the following: Tony Blair's hollow statements about Iran-as-threat.

"Iran poses a major strategic threat to the cohesion of the entire region," Mr Bliar Bliar Pants on Fire humorously overexerted himself today.

Let's reverse the ridiculousness of this scenario into the following: Iran stating the British pose a major strategic threat to Europe. Hmm... actually, that does make sense. The British have indeed done everything they can to destabilize any sense of equilibrium in Europe -- just look at their refusal to adopt the Euro. Just look at the hate politics they have spread in the region -- and don't just count the British monarchy and establishment's open support of the Nazis or their anti-immigration rhetoric that comes not only from racist political parties like the British National Party, but also from Labour, and of course the Tories. Just look at their "coalition against terror" which consisted of them, the former President of Italy (a tried criminal), and a Nazi sympathizer over in Germany. Just look and see.

Iran has posed far less a threat to the Middle East or any other region than Britain always has. The daily death, destruction, human rights violations, torture and countless crimes committed in the Middle East are a direct and unbelievably unprosecuted result of British interference, manipulation, and war in that region.

The fact that Blair would make such a comment in the context of his antagonization of the Holocaust conference happening in Iran today openly demonstrates the opportunism and valueless intentions he has: if Blair had even a measureable amount of regard for human rights, he and his government wouldn't have been doing business with Iran for all these years even as it continues to be one of the most human-rights-deficient governments in the world. Neither Blair, nor any other world leader for that matter, has ever condemned Iran for its severe deficiency in recognizing human rights. Someone who cares for only some people's rights, cares for no one's.

Unfortunately for Blair, world Jewry is less and less inclined to make friendly with bigots who jump on the anti-Semitism bandwagon -- bigots like Tony Blair.

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Monday, December 11, 2006

Peace Prize Deserved: Muhammad Yunus

The Nobel Peace Prize committee rarely offers the prize to someone who truly deserves it -- someone who has truly done something to help humanity through a sincere and concerted effort toward preserving and encouraging human rights.

The choice of Muhammad Yunus is to be commended and admired: this individual and his Grameen Bank which provides loans for the very poor in Bangladesh without demanding any collateral, is truly an individual who has made an effort to save lives and change the course of poverty and human rights conditions in his country. Hopefully, he will encourage other well-to-do people to make a difference in this world where over 50% of the wealth is in the hands of only 2% of the population.

Previous winners of the Nobel Peace Prize have been insults to the value of human rights and to the many people who actually make a sincere effort toward peace and humanity. These poor choices tend to fall into one of two categories: attempts at revering failed statesmen (think Kofi Annan, 2001; Jimmy Carter, 2002; Arafat, Peres and Rabin, 1994; Gorbachev, 1990 and a long list of others) and tokens: minorities and women chosen to prove that the Prize Committee isn't prejudiced.

Sadly, the only Iranian to ever win the prize falls into this second category. The choice of Shirin Ebadi in 2003 was the committee's desperate attempt to give much needed voice to the deplorable dearth of human rights in Iran while at the same time finally awarding the prize to a Muslim -- sort of like killing two birds with one stone, really. Unfortunately, they didn't do their research and they picked an establishment pansy who did little before she won the prize and even less after.
Is Yunus the start of a trend toward justifiable Peace Prize laureates? Probably not, but then again, let's just be happy when credit is given where credit is due. Congratulations Muhammad Yunus and thank you.

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Sunday, December 10, 2006

Human Rights Day

The champions of democracy and human rights -- the "West" -- and their lamentable weapons of mass democracy, the media, have managed again to spectacularly bludgeon any sense of decency they may be in possession of. Yes, today, though you'd never know from reading BBC News Online, CNN, Le Monde, Sueddeutsche Zeitung (though they've managed to cover the earth-shattering news of the birthday of the 'Master of Trash Talk, Larry "Tweety" Bird' ), or any number of "reputable" Western media institutions, is International Human Rights Day.

How fitting that Pinochet -- a known war criminal, who like most war criminals in history gets away with murder -- should exit our world on such a memorial to the sanctity of human life, no? How even more fitting that not one of these major "Western" news outlets troubled themselves to remind their readers of the irony of Pinochet's passing on such a day.

What a debasement of the concept of human rights it is that one day must be set aside each year to remind the world that human rights are still predominantly unrecognized and disrespected, and that humanity is still far from appreciating human rights as anything less than second nature. Human rights are the inherent, inviolable rights that each and every human being is born with: the right to health, education, nourishment, due process and equality under the law, and the most misunderstood and overlooked one of all: respect as an individual human being.

Human rights day is everyday, not just today...

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Iranian Photographer Honored

This image won the Pulitzer Prize for Spot News Photography in 1980. It was the first image in the 90-year history of the organization to be awarded anonymously. This week the identity of this photographer has been revealed to be Iranian photojournalist Jahangir Razmi and the Pulitzer Prize committee has announced that they will award Razmi his due prize in their May 2007 ceremonies.
It's a chilling imprint of the legacy that a cowardly dictatorial shah left his people when he fled Iran and threw Iranians at the mercy of a religious regime that not only scarred their dignity as the Shah had done for decades, but scarred their bodies, as well.

To see more of the 70 pictures Razmi took that day, see this link.

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Thursday, December 07, 2006

Bushler & Bliar: Honeymoon's Way Over

George W. Bushler and the man portrayed as his puppet but who is actually his puppet master, Tony "Evil Eye" Bliar, were back on the media scene today purporting a united front like a couple of washed up bullies on the playground of international public opinion.

It was an expected assemblage in the face of yesterday's Iraq Study Group findings which basically said what everyone in the world already knew: the US-UK coalition in Iraq is a complete failure and has transformed from a quick and tidy military operation (yeah right) into a desperate and incoherent murder spree, also known as genocide. Or something like that. It was also a chance for Humpty and Dumpty to divert attention from the embarrassment of Iran's growing arch of power in the region.

Bliar, a persistent example of the modern British peacock politician (a well-tailored suit may trick the eye momentarily but the ugliness underneath eventually shows its feet), spewed his regular spin throughout the Washington DC conference, managing as always to say nothing while endlessly talking. Knowing that he is, nonetheless, not Enemy #1, certainly helped Bliar keep his cool while his "best buddy" (a.k.a. lapdog) Bushler melted in the heat of a barrage of questions that have nothing to do with praise.

Agitated, impatient, and unable to control the pace of his automatic retorts or his growing frustration, Bushler, as he has always done despite long hours of training and advice, showed the true face of a regime who has magnificently failed at the one thing you cannot fail at in the digital media age: keeping up appearances. A high profile blurb here and a media-opp there simply do not a spin success make.

And of course, that's the one and only thing the British have ever mastered to perfection: never letting go of the pretense -- it's what brought those tiny islanders to the fore of international infamy but it's also what will eventually bring them down as more and more people worldwide take offense to being to played the fool by snobbery, classism and manufactured charm.

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Monday, December 04, 2006

Esfahan This Week...

I love those classic brooms...
Pol-e joobi...

Si-o-Se pol -- my favorite bridge of all!

All photos by M. Mousavi.

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