27 July 2006


from andrew sullivan:

Bush's Response to Hamdan

27 Jul 2006 06:23 pm

Marty Lederman has posted the text of the White House's draft legislation on military prisoners. It's a work in progress but its scope is clear:

On first glance, it does not appear to be limited to aliens, nor even to Al Qaeda and other groups and individuals covered by the September 18, 2001 AUMF -- it covers any and all "enemy combatants" against the U.S. and its allies in any conflict, anywhere and at any time.

Consider yourself warned. This kind of legislation, enabling the government to seize, imprison, and torture anyone, including U.S. citizens, without the legal protections accorded for centuries by Anglo-American principles of justice is deeply, deeply worrying.

dog days

the air changed a little, which doesn't always happen in the middle of dog days---i can see kennesaw again and the sun is not setting behind the price-waterhouse building anymore---

26 July 2006

baby tilapia

alexis is getting big---she's gonna be huge by the scheduled birthdate, nov 29---she got a sonogram yesterday and pam sent me a copy this morning----say hello to baby tilapia or whitey, which is mike's provisional name for him/her---it probly won't be a hermaphrodite, but they don't want to know if it's girl or boy till it's born---

25 July 2006

camera nueva

got my new camera today---think i'm gonna like it---i will be better able to document the ongoing cycle of destruction and reconstruction on peachtree street, which really screws up the traffic---today they had two lanes closed between 6th and 7th, where i thought they were finished with replacing water mains, etc.

23 July 2006

too many sunsets to look at

aunt ruby

so they couldn't rouse her on the phone the other night and sent the cops over, who found her sitting there stone cold dead on her sofa in front of the teevee---she was 90 with her husband dead 20 yrs and their only son, my oldest cousin, warner, dead two or three years----that's her on the far left with the siblings at neel's gap or somewheres in the early 1930s---i always kinda liked her until mother told me or rather insinuated that ruby had ragged her about me being queer back when they were still young enough to be fighting and bitching with each other---somehow that made me feel a little different--- but tomorrow i gotta go be a pallbearer, or cart roller, which is what it amounts to---happy monday coming right up

22 July 2006

another damn sunset

streets of san juan antigua

san juan reminded me of habana, of course, but it was also very different---old san juan, or san juan antigua (antique san juan), is not as big as la habana vieja (old havana) and they seem to have different conceptions of their antiquity, but both are world heritage sites---san juan is in much better shape than havana---it's also not flat, like havana, and in fact ends in sheer walls down to the water in some places---but both of them have an excellent mixture of architecture, ranging from 16th century forts and cathedral to wonderful streets of 19th and 20th century residential and commercial buildings.


the lighthouse at san felipe del morro is the most elaborate lighthouse design that i have seen---built by the u.s. navy in 1908 to replace an earlier, smaller lighthouse.

forts and walls

there are several forts at San Juan, but the two biggest are san felipe del morro (constructed 1540-1790), located at the mouth of the bay, and san cristobal (1634), located about a mile east of el morro and the largest fortification in the Americas---the approach to el morro is across a treeless headland, while san cristobal has houses and apartment buildings across a narrow street from its entrance---along with construction of san cristobal, the spanish began constructing huge stone walls that completely enclosed the city by 1785--part of the walls were torn down in 1897 to facilitate expansion of the old city across the peninsula and around the bay, but they remain standing along the bay, around el morro, and along the atlantic above the cemetery and la perla, the latter being, my hosts assured me, a den of drug lords and other iniquity---on the bay side, they have created a great pedestrian path, which was overrun with feral cats that some believe are descendants of the cats that are known to have come to the island with columbus' second voyage in 1493---the iron oxides leaching out of sections of the walls make for some really nice coloration on parts of the walls.

atmospheric conditions

the puerto rican sky was amazing---lots of clouds and huge thunderstorms---but unlike here, where haze obscures the horizon, there the clarity of the skies makes for some spectacular sunsets---wish i had had my camera when i was up on the terraplein of san cristobal tuesday evening---

life in the big city

so the ajc printed my letter in response to the little woman who wrote in bitching about how dangerous midtown is---she was all ascared of "aggressive vagrants. . .trafficking and drug use... prostititution" and, my personal favorite, "the disease and uncleanness caused by used condoms strewn on the streets"---she said she "could go on and on" but fortunately she didn't---she had moved here from marietta in november, but clearly needs to retrace her steps and GET THE HELL OUT OF OUR CITY----

21 July 2006

farming the balcony

the meyer lemon has made itself right to home---bloomed a lot and had a lot of little lemons, which all fell off before they started to grow---until now---there are two that are maybe 3/4" diameter and i think they are going to make---

20 July 2006

domini, domini, domini, you're all catholic now

The original Catedral de San Juan was destroyed by a hurricane in 1526; the present building was begun in 1540. It was looted by by the British in 1598 and badly damaged by another hurricane in 1615. The building underwent a major restoration in 1917.

17 July 2006

another bug

another bug from the wilds of gwinnett county---well, technically, it's probably not a bug, unless you pulled its little wings off, which wouldn't be right----can anyone recommend a good lepidopterologist?

08 July 2006

the great pink cross of jesus

appearing over midtown this evening

down on your knees, you heathen savages

03 July 2006

understanding the internets

some people don't understand nuttin
and they're making the rules?

Ten of them streaming across that internet and what happens to your own personal internet? I just the other day got, an internet was sent by my staff at 10 o'clock in the morning on Friday and I just got it yesterday. Why? Because it got tangled up with all these things going on the internet commercially.

sen. stephens (R-Alaska)

02 July 2006

gene pools

so i got my dna analysis back from the nat. geographic society's "genographic project" in which my Y chromosome identified me as a member of haplogroup I with markers at M168, M89, and M170, each of which identifies an ancestor who lived, respectively, roughly 50,000, 45,000, and 20,000 years ago, moving from africa, to the middle east, through turkey into the balkans and from there across much of northern europe---some people call M170 the viking gene, but it's also related to celts of central europe---amazing stuff---check out the atlas

water, rocks, and rednecks

we drove over to little river canyon national preserve yesterday---first time i'd seen it---it's not quite tallulah gorge but still purty impressive---reminded me of high shoals on the apalachee only instead of naked hippies it was obese rednecks---lots of them---culminating with supper at the fruit jar cafe---i liked the rocks best