January 22nd, 2006


Iraq -- an oil debtor?!

34 Turkish companies have stopped exporting refined oil products to Iraq, because they are owed over $1 billion that the Iraqi government has so far failed to pay.

Iraq needs to import refined oil products from Turkey, because it lacks refinery capacity, and its three major refineries are all significantly effected by insurgent attacks. Apparently, they recieve refined oil / petrol by tanker from the relatively safe southern ports on the Arabian Sea.

Expect the gas lines that currently plague Iraq to get worse, until such point as they pay their debts.

Bolivar's second revolution continues.

Bolivia's new president, Evo Morales, is a socialist, former coca leaf farmer, and a friend of Hugo Chavez. He's also genuinely loved by his people, after winning a sweeping party majority in a multi-party presidential election, in a convincing 54% landslide, the biggest since Bolivia's return to democracy in 1982.

Here, a Bolivian miner waits in front of Congress, where Evo Morales will be sworn in as the country's first indigenous president. The new face of democracy in Bolivia. Che approves! Cheney, however, is probably already plotting a coup.

Human progress?! New technology?! Who needs that?!

Not the entertainment industry, apparently.

They're supporting a new piece of legislation that would freeze innovation, by allowing only entertainment products and electronics that support "customary historic use of broadcast content by consumers to the extent such use is consistent with applicable law."

If that law had been in place in the past, that would mean no VCRs, no tape recorders, no tv video cards, no TiVos, and no applications that would subvert the way entertainment is shared, watched online, or otherwise distributed.

If you want their vision of the future of the entertainment industry, imagine a boot stamping on a captive audience's face - forever. Now in HDTV!