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    Jeremy

    This is fine disagreeing, I have no expertise in the matters of economy, and have been wrong as much as I’ve been right.

    Just to be clear I was referring to current problems, not the start of the problems on Obama. His action thus far, I believe have deepen the dangers that will could be seen in the next few months. My solace comes from slow realization to his danger from both parties, and the 2010 elections that can end his threat on what is consider America ideals.

    Yeah, Buchanan is creepy, but now of days, if you criticize anyone that happens to be black, your declared a racist. The black “leaders” refuse to remove the white-guilt trip, it simply gives them too much power.

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    cocoskyavitch

    Hey, Jeremy,

    you are right, for sure race gets people all upset. IThere was one Youtube vid where Buchanon was getting busted and it didn’t seem truly warranted. Although Buchanon freaks me out (also, I thought the guy died a while ago…??!!!)

    And, although I only know the little I have read about the economy…I really am very concerned about the whole idea of this stimulus package. If it works, great, and if not, it’s chaos, and Mad Max.

    Got your dune buggy and guns?

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    Jeremy

    cocoskyavitch

    If it works, great, and if not, it’s chaos, and Mad Max.

    That just about what it boils down to. 😛

    Well, maybe not so black and white, but if you are familiar with Argentina’s collapse a few years back, much the same can be expected if things aren’t worked out. Really, it’s wide spread of civil chaos that is the most likely scenario, and sadly if this supposed 2 million more jobs lost by year end comes true, indeed dune buggies and guns.

    Here a rather interesting read, this is truly worst cast scenario for America, but it’s neat to read what people in countries were things truly went wrong experienced. It worth a glace for curiosity sakes.

    Thoughts on Urban Survival

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    cocoskyavitch

    Hey, Jeremy, the economic spending package was passed…(I pray the country survives it ).

    I am off to Mexico again, and probably won’t be in contact until the second week in March, but I will be thinking about you all while I introduce my young students to the joys of Lucha Libre, Tacos Pastor and the art of the Mexican Muralists. I’m leaving you this link to the most surprising installation I’ve ever heard of in the Zocalo… 😳

    http://www.artnet.com/usernet/awc/awc_workdetail.asp?aid=425378777&gid=425378777&cid=129836&wid=425383730&page=1

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    Jeremy

    Hope you have a good time. :mrgreen:

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    Jeremy

    Well, but one last step to get the stimulus passed. I hope that $13/week, really bring us success, as most of the money goes to liberal pet projects, like “youth programs”, “military base clean up”, and “volcano monitoring” as we all know the economy pivots on getting more kids playing sports and having volcano monitors installed. 🙄

    Success or fail, will be entirely Democrat, as not a single Republican has giving it support. This makes or kills the Democrats.

    Whatever happens, enjoy the tacos and wrestling. 😆

    You have my jealously. 🙁

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    cocoskyavitch

    I’ll miss this forum! It’s become my habit to log in each day and read the posts.

    I have this interesting book by Nicholas Gilman, “Good Food in Mexico City” it’s a guide to food stalls, fondas and restaurants. I’m trying to plan each day so that the students experience different things. Should tell them, though about menudo before making them try it!

    We’ll probably have one grand dinner at Cafe Tacuba, and try the Tacos Pastor in the Centro. I would also like them to have a chance to try the Pozole and, since we are going to Cholula, hit up a Mole Poblano place. So, these last hours are packing, planning meals into the itinerary, and last-minute details. See you soon! (And, I hope there’s a country to return to!)

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    Ugetsu

    Take care coco, have a wonderful time!

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    Jeremy

    Sounds like good times, Cholula tends to be a rather fun place to be at night, it’s certainly worth a spare night if you got one, especially if UDLAP students are out and about.

    If you get the chance, try to find some tiny family ran restaurants, you’ll get more “real” food there then any of the touristy places, and really a tiny place, that looks questionably sanitary, is the only place to eat proper menudo .

    Plus, right now, they need the money. Mexico economy makes ours looks just dandy, seriously, some bad stuff around the boarder town going down-avoid them.

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    cocoskyavitch

    Thanks, guys. Jeremy, you clearly have the inside track on Mexico. I’m planning these daytrips:Teotihuacan (of course), Chapingo and Cholula (I gave them a choice between Cholula, Puebla and Tula, and they like the Indiana-Jones-esque idea of walking the underground tunnels beneath the second largest pyramid in the world and the largest in MesoAmerica). I was once on Mexican t.v. in the zocalo in Cholula-just random crew interviewing folks.

    I confess that I am a little disappointed in my book on food-it’s got great recommendations (based on the places I actually have eaten that are in the book) but the maps! The are completely screwed up! I had a student cross referencing the maps in the back of the book to the descriptions and charting them so that I could place them on my trusty, reliable, laminated map-only to find a discrepency between the map and description!!! The description would say #19 Hidalgo, then the map would show the restaurant on Isabel la Catolica. So nuts and frustrating. My plan is still to seek out a variety of fondas and markets and one or two restaurants so that they get the chance to try some of the variety of Mexican cuisine (Yucatecan, Chiapas, Central Highlands) and some of the specialities.

    I am eager to go. These last days are just touching up the bits and pieces…I have a a request in to the Universidad in Chapingo for a private tour of the Rivera Chapel on campus. They’ve been lovely, but your cautionary note on the econmy is dead on-they said,

    ” es un placer recibir su correo y su solicitud. En efecto

    podríamos recibirlos, siempre y cuando nuestra Universidad se

    encuentre en condiciones pues es probable que por la situación

    económica mundial, los trabajadores de ésta se vayan a huelga. Ruego a

    Usted enviar su solicitud, nuevamente, después del día 22 de febrero

    para poder informarles si están abiertas las instalaciones, incluidas

    en ellas la Capilla Riveriana.

    Quedo a sus órdenes para confirmar posteriormente.

    Saludos fraternos.”

    So, it may be that we have some interruption to our plans. If it spreads to transportation, this could be a bit dicey! I’ve been in both France and Italy during major transportation strikes. One year in Paris, everything was shut down…disaster!! Well, we made the best of it. Our lodgings at UNESCO were close enough to some sights…but, honestly, even the bus transport was out, so it was a slog to get where we needed to go, sometimes.

    And, Italy-we spent hours on train platforms hoping for a train out of whatever town…one year it was a chemical spill on the tracks in Mestre outside of Venice. Luckily, in that case I had a boyfriend in Carpenedo, and we took water taxis to a back area land mass and picked up a bus and were able to get a train beyond the spill. But, crazy stuff always happens when you travel.

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    Jeremy

    I’ve been about Mexico, but like with most places I visit, dont do all that much. And certainly nothing like what your doing. Which really sounds fun, the whole Indian Jones, walking in tunnels is something I would really enjoy. The closest I’ve been to that, is watching “Cities of the Underworld” on the History Channel.

    Maps, have been the largest struggle for me, no matter where I go. Especially finding specfic areas, that I too, have cross referenced spots only to find they supposedly exist in a river. The problem is usually the scaling, and the less developed the country/area the less properly done are the maps.

    I’ve tried everything, even buying a really fancy GPS, building up database markers before I leave from home. These largely undeveloped areas still have poor GPS information, along with a reduction in satellite coverage, reducing pin-point accuracy, giving you at times 3-4 miles of error and 15 minute delays, making it worse then a paper map.

    I took a school a few years back on map making, and have been making my own maps on a scratch paper as I travel. Which work really well in the middle of nowhere, but they only go to get you back home if you get lost, still leaving you unable to find where you want to go and knowing really where you are.

    In China recently due to inaccurate everything, I drifted nearly 80 miles SE of my target, and had no idea were I was in relation to anything. It can be a real nightmare to think your someplace but be everywhere but. Luckily I had my self made map, because I was going to end up traveling further away at first, thinking it would bring me closer. And the people that live in these areas, haven’t a clue a world outside their tiny town exist, so they don’t even really no where they are-plus the whole communication thing sucks too.

    It’s just part of the game, I guess.

    And of course, my adventures trying to seek Toho Studio in Japan, is another great example, that even developed countries can be very hard to navigate-but I blame that on Japan’s address system that apparently no one can figure out as landmarks are still the real navigation, as I was technically in the right place as per Toho address. 🙄

    Well, hopefully you can fulfill your private tour request. I don’t really know the depth of Mexico’s problem, I’ve been relayed information from other Mexicans, and they speak largely of the boarder towns. However, I do know the country as a whole isn’t fairing too well, which really is going for all countries. So, there shouldn’t be much surprise.

    I hope Obama is much more smarter then I give him credit for, because I’m feeling the effects now, and after 1 week of no work, I find out today I got 2 weeks of mandatory none-paid vacation. Which is much better news then most people are getting, my project team got 13 lay offs today. This still sucks, because my bills have yet to take their vacation and I starting to use up a credit card I hoped to never use, which I wonder if can afford to repay it.

    Again, I hope you and your group have a great time. Wish I was there, I got ramen noodles to look forward to all week. 😛

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    cocoskyavitch

    AAaargh. Jeremy, it is horrible what’s happening ot the economy. I have such a small group for Mexico city compared to the past! Everyone is freaking out. Last night a woman at the gym was saying she had just moved into her house in our neighborhood…I welcomed her, said I hoped she would be happy…and it started a landslide of horror! She had lost her other house, (the new house she had been trying to buy) so all that money down the drain when she sold it at a loss, her 401K tanked and she and her husband were looking for work (she was pretty old and had been retired for years!) Yeeesh.

    Allright, thinking of happier things: Jorge at Catedral Hostel in MX is getting me discount Lucha Libre tickets. I really do love electronic communications. Viva la Vida!!!!

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    Jeremy

    Yeah, things are starting to get messy, and the stock market keeps falling, and has yet to respond to stimulus. Honestly, I don’t see us ever recovering from this fully.

    Whatever the case, everybody’s life is going to be different, and if not already, very soon.

    The rest of the world is a mess too, and Eastern Europe is becoming very interesting to watch as a model for the rest of Europe. For if they turn into the next Argentina, the rest of Europe will destabilize.

    California makes a interesting model for the rest of the states as. I dont know how a state goes bankrupt in the first place-liberals I assume 🙂

    Which makes China the only winner, they own America, and soon Europe-assuming anybody wants those guys. But like I’ve said in the past, Europe is nothing without America-and they are starting to find this out-finally. Which is the one positive in the whole thing, as they forgot who is boss.

    It’s all rather comical really.

    Say hi to Super Lobo and Mistico for me 😛

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    cocoskyavitch

    Comical in a black-humor kind of way. I’m really concerned about the consequences of this kind of world economic meltdown. You mention Argentina-and that’s a good point-economic collapse makes people look in strange places for solutions, and a radical response is more than likely…(think of Weimar Republic Germany).

    And, China-well, I have been saying to my students for years, “Yeah, forget America-China is the new superpower. How do you like being in her shadow?” I don’t think they really believed it. Sure, they saw the streets, the sheer numbers of people. But, I don’t think they realized the extent to which our economy was being floated by China.

    I’m terrified that these stimulus package efforts by the government will not work. I truly hope that’s just me being nervous, but I honestly don’t trust John Maynard Keynes’ ideas.

    Allright, I am finished with the office in a bit, then some last packing, and then making sure my mother has what she needs while I am gone…catch you on the flip side!

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    Jeremy

    Yeah, it’s not funny at all actually. But all this stuff has been mentioned and warned about as far back as the late 80’s. I’m talking step by step warning, examples, proofs, etc. All ignored.

    China did do one thing right and the first of it kind. Defeat a country via a slow economic drain. I dont know the repercussion of this, but it seriously business, that the (once)world powers need to discuss. The problem is Europe is still in some sort of fairly land, with their heads buried in the sand, hoping it will all go away. Their citizens put no pressure on them, because lord forbid they question their government-they may take away their “free” crap. I really can’t express my distaste for Europe. Worse we still think their Socialism holds magic, and everyday get closer to their model.

    This is the problem, a China owned America, and a America at the brink of Socialism. Socialism making an entire country dependent on government, and with a government dependent on a world power.

    Europe had the nice, let them criticize us to no end, and we will still save their ass, America.

    America has a the commies in China.

    Then American free-market is on the death bed, so there is very little for us to remove ourselves from the Chinese.

    What happens now is pure speculation, but it sure to be messy.

    People make fun of Putin, but much can be learn from this man, but like all warning and examples America is quick to ignore.

    Russian Prime Minister Vladamir Putin has said the US should take a lesson from the pages of Russian history and not exercise “excessive intervention in economic activity and blind faith in the state’s omnipotence”.

    “In the 20th century, the Soviet Union made the state’s role absolute,” Putin said during a speech at the opening ceremony of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. “In the long run, this made the Soviet economy totally uncompetitive. This lesson cost us dearly. I am sure nobody wants to see it repeated.”[Snip.]

    Sounding more like Barry Goldwater than the former head of the KGB, Putin said, “Nor should we turn a blind eye to the fact that the spirit of free enterprise, including the principle of personal responsibility of businesspeople, investors, and shareholders for their decisions, is being eroded in the last few months. There is no reason to believe that we can achieve better results by shifting responsibility onto the state.”

    Putin also echoed the words of conservative maverick Ron Paul when he said, “we must assess the real situation and write off all hopeless debts and ‘bad’ assets. True, this will be an extremely painful and unpleasant process. Far from everyone can accept such measures, fearing for their capitalization, bonuses, or reputation. However, we would ‘conserve’ and prolong the crisis, unless we clean up our balance sheets.”

    Before McCain was the only option, I wanted Ron Paul-as surely it would take a Texan to clean up our problems-but like most Texan he was too radical to get wide spread appeal.

    Best stop my doom in gloom 😛 It’s a nice day today, bright with the new Chinese sun. 😛

    Best wishes.

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    cocoskyavitch

    Hey, Jeremy, there is some strange thing in effect, it seems that whenever I am in Mexico I meet Chinese people. So, I am looking at your post above and thinking, “Hell, we have been mortgaging ourselves to the Chinese for years! Every piece of crap we have been buying at WalMart (yippee for good old Capitalism, right?) has put us where we are right now”.

    Capitalism sucks, because when it tanks, everything tanks. Socialism sucks because…well, I forget why, but you don’t like it, that’s for sure. Communism sucks, because all fascist states suck.

    Anyway, I had almost 20 days of not thinking about the world economy, only worrying about the day-to-day personal budget of our program. It wasn’t until I hit Dallas/Ft. Worth that I had to watch CNN in the ariport and be pummeled by blowhard pundits on the economy. Seriously.

    I had great students, and we had incredible experiences. Tough return from sun and eternal spring in the central Mexican states to cold weather and colder economics.

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    Jeremy

    Welcome back, good to hear that all was well. I was wonder when you would return. Do tell what you did, or else I’ll go off in another rant 🙂

    It’s true we have in some regard been mortgaging ourselves to the Chinese, but it was largely sustainable, and not necessarily a bad thing. Surely no one wants to pay $5 for a American made gadget, when it can be had for $1 if made by China. It’s the over use of China, that was the problem. It is however I feel more a result of America’s extremely high business taxes, and unions that force outrageous pay. There’s not much choice but to go to China, if a company ever hopes to make profit, American government and unions bleed those, that should not bleed.

    Dont buy into this Obama BS, that large companies are evil, and be angered that some CEO spent a million bucks on a toilet. What a large companies buys with it’s success doesn’t effect you negatively, it’s not your money, and it’s their massive spending, that pumps larges sums of money into the economy, and creates jobs in the process. The simple fact is the rich employ, the poor do not. It’s far better to have a job, to whom your boss spends money freely, then a broke boss, that can not afford to employ you.

    Proof of this can be seen now, the rich are getting punished, and so a massive amount of jobs have been lost, and the stock market drops. Has anyone seen a betterment, because the “evil” rich have been destroyed?

    What you should be angered at is when government spends money on anything, this is your money. And money in your pocket is far better then money in the governments pocket. Money in your pocket can pay your bills, when giving to the government, you get a research into why pig crap stinks(a real “stimulus” ear mark)

    Capitalism does have problem, but when capitalism is left alone, it a near prefect system. You in a sense get what you put in, intelligence is reward, stupidity and greed get punished.

    The problem with socialism, is everybody and everything is dependent upon someone/something else. One has no ability to realistically raise from their current position. The difference between one who is smart, and one stupid, is rather slight. It’s a system were equal results are always had, no matter what you put into it you get the same result as the one’s success only goes to another.

    You realize America is in far better shape then our socialist friends in Europe. Why? Because their entire livelihood is based on their ability to hang on the back of America. The more socialist countries, like in Eastern Europe, are far worse, as they are dependent on the Western European countries. As we see now, they are so dependent, they have no means to maintain themselves, and why are currently begging the Western bloc for money. Which have been denying such as thing, as they are busy praying for America money, and are not willing to spare anything to the Eastern bloc, whom they declare rather worthless. And in a sense, this is true, they don’t actually do much outside themselves, but do hang heavily on the backs of others. It is entirely their fault, and their peoples fault for being comfortable with dependence, and not having the will power to fight the hardships of independence.

    Socialism spawns laziness, and contentment. Such a thing is very dangerous, and only a few people can break away from it, but even then they don’t escape far enough to gain from their efforts.

    And true independence is hard, as we can see America having some serious problems. However, our problems are rather easily fixed, things slow as failure results, but failure open up new grounds for new things, and success quickly spawns again.

    The problem lays in the government, largely Obama, to which doesn’t have the strength to maintain independence, so falls for the ease of dependence via the Chinese. By preventing failure, and prevent greed from being punished, you get the results of a system that changes when it shouldn’t, turning Capitalism into Socialism:

    A stock market that has lost some 2400+ point since Obama, and a 2.6 million jobs lost since his reign, and a America heavily owned by China.

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    cocoskyavitch

    I never have been angry at the rich. I always wanted to be one of them! Ha!

    Capitalism is predicated on the economy of scale, and finding the cheapest labor…and that has led us to this point of being mortgaged to China, not Obama. That’s absurd. He is dealing with Bush’s failings on every front. I will concede that some of the regulations set in place during Democratic presidencies have blown up and caused chaos. So, evil seeds were sown a while ago. Let’s not pretend, though, that Obama had anything to do with any of this, or that our current situation is his doing.

    Obama may exacerbate the problems further through his Keynsian economic responses. But, wait and see.

    I went to Taxco, Tepoztlan (where I climbed the holy mountain and met the shaman Mixtli who gave me a prophecy) and Tlaxcala where I met the son of the artist who did the murals of the governor’s palace. We did Lucha Libre (and I bought a little Misterio-decorated toy wrestling ring with four lucha guys including El Santo, and then, added 4 miniature Hello Kitties and had them fight the Lucha guys…and took photos of the mortal combat) and the students and I did the Xochimilco boat rides in the Aztec canals. We climbed pyramids of the sun and moon at Teotihuacan (and all got sunburned) and had dinners at Tacuba and street food on Isabel. It was lovely, warm, eternal spring, with flowers in bloom, and Iris gardens with white and violet petals sending sweet scents into the air. Bad for my waistline was the daily pilgrimmage to the Ideal bakery where we purchased large amounts of their fresh pastries…we went to the Virgin of Guadalupe shrine where we saw a long history of ex-votos, and understood Frida Kahlo’s relationship to this uniquely Mexican form of art, and we went to the Casa Azul, Frida Kahlo’s home, to see her paintings and her life, and we went to all the likely venues and viewed the improtant works of the Mexican Muralists in the context of national Identity post-revolution. It was transformative, and it is quite difficult to let go of the light and color and traditions and the people of Mexico. Viva Zapata!

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    Jeremy

    I think we or at least me, once again circle back round to our disagreements. Such disagreements however on how a country should be ran, is not only healthy and for the best, but the very means in which America was intended to operate. Otherwise we would be those damn “push me around”, “make decisions for me” socialist. 😛

    Your trip sounds really great. I honestly wish I could claim to have done a faction of what you have.

    You have got to post some pics of the Hello Kitties! 😉

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    cocoskyavitch

    Hey, Jeremy, I have seen you post screen captures, diagrams, images, and it has been really useful (and sometimes funny) when we are discussing film to see the relevant shot.

    I imagine doing screen captures might be tricky, and require software that I probably don’t have and wouldn’t have time to learn right now. But, simple posts…how does one do that?

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    Jeremy

    You have a flicker account (as linked in your screen name), just upload the images on your computer to flicker, then via the “Image” button on this site, type in the location of the picture on flicker, so the website can have it up for view.

    I’m not sure how flicker works, but viewing the image on flicker, you can just “right-click” the image, click “copy image location”, then going back to this site paste the information into the “Image” popup on the website.

    If not flicker, then most people use http://imageshack.us/ .

    As for me, I have my own server which shares the same principals but offers far more control, abilities and no restrictions.

    I believe flicker, and imageshack will rescale the image to something easily view automatically, if not or to reduce the upload time and size: The fantastic and free program, IrfanView, can do simple modifications to any photo format. This is the program I use to quickly, rescale, and color correct an image before I post it, for anything more advance then you’ll need programs that are not free.

    To make simple diagrams, MS Paint, or whatever the freebie that Macs have works fine, I use various programs, but tend to just go back to MS Paint for pure ease. From that, you again upload it to a server, as mention above.

    Screen Captures: IrfanView has the ability to capture the screen rather easily(located in the “Options” drop down). Since it’s the whole screen you’ll need to crop what you want, rescale, and then upload-all that can be done easily within IrfanView.

    If you have Windows Vista, what I use and found the be the best screen capture tool ever, is called “Snipping Tool” which allows specfic areas to be capture,giving you more ease and reduction in steps.

    That should about cover it.

    If you got problems, need to do something more advance or need a place to host files for this site(assuming they hold no value, not personal or private). I got literally every major image and video editing software that could ever be needed, and your too welcome to my server space.

    Just e-mail: (my first name)[at]cinemadepth[dot]com

    ^ I get no spam, and dont what the spambots to find my email 😉 .


    —-

    I do like the fact that Obama is starting to talk positive, versus his typically doom and gloom. While I know he was trying to reduce his unrealistic expectations via the doom and gloom(or likely just reading what his teleprompter tells him to), he was killing the stock market in the process.

    Now however, he has wised up, (or someone retype his teleprompter speech(you know if Bush had every speech via teleprompter, he would get hammered by the media for being feed what to say))and talking more positive, the stock market is starting to climb a bit.

    If only he wouldn’t demonize AIG payouts, and capitalism 🙄

    But, I know he is doing this only to push his socialist ideals. Since he strangely pardoning the AIG CEO, to whom is responsible for the payout and contracts, but does hold money to fund Obama’s agendas, while instead striking down the “evil” company to whom is only honoring the contracts of it’s employees, a area that the government has no right to get involved in.

    Oh,

    THE GREAT SOCIALIST CONSPIRACY continues. 😛

    Obama

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    cocoskyavitch

    Hey, Jeremy, thank so much for the good, clear information on how to post. Very helpful!

    Congress also seems like a bunch of monkeys who jump on any old bandwagon with their rabid response to the AIG thing. Anyone who understands contract law understands that you must fulfil your contracts or re-negotiate. If the bailout money did not require renegotiation of contracts, then, well, this is exactly where you end up…!

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    Jeremy

    hope the information helped you some.

    I just hope all turns out well soon.

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    Vili Maunula

    Re: uploading images, you can also send them to me at vili.maunula(at)gmail.com and I’ll do a quickie upload if I’m online at that moment.

    I’ll try to find a way to allow you guys upload images directly onto the akirakurosawa.info server. I’ve actually looked into it a couple of times, but it’s a little bit tricky because it has to be secure. I’ll try to look into it again this weekend.

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    cocoskyavitch

    Thanks, Vili. I have enjoyed the visuals (the funny ones where Jeremy did a drawing…that was awesome, and posting this recent cartoon, I have to admit, he made me chuckle! The ones where frame-by-frame an idea is explored are impressive and helpful. For example, I would not have had the reference point for a film you discussed, but was able to follow via your image posts, the main gist of your idea.)

    Hey Jeremy, I was at Trotsky’s house in Mexico City and took pics of the bullet holes from the (unsuccessful) assassination attempt on him (the attempt that succeeded only made holes in Trotsky’s head- I gather a pickaxe was used). Trotsky’s last words were, “I think Stalin has finished the job he started.”

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    Jeremy

    Yes, pictures, thousand words or something like that.

    Never been to Trotsky’s house, but would be something to think about next time head that way. I believe it was an ice pick to the head, that being the great and classic commie assassination weapon of choice after all. Trotsky is rather interesting, as is all of Russia and it’s leaders, the step by step approaches, surface appeal, short and long term warnings, and ultimate and certain dangers and failures of socialism and communism are all there to be studied. For some reason entirely ignored by Europe and perhaps Obama, but I think for Europe at least it might change as they are receive a dose of it right now.

    You know what I just learn today, and what is rather recent info to anybody(since nobody actually read the stimulus package till now) some 100 billion dollar of American working men and women money went to Europe to fix their problems. I wish we would let them sink, only then will they learn, and fix themselves for the better. If we keep floating socialism, then the surface appeal will forever remain, and then grow to infect America-as it is doing.

    Okay, I told myself no more rants, so I stop here. 😛

    Not that it speaks of Obama’s intelligence, but it was funny how I made fun of him for dependence on a teleprompter. And just a few days ago, he read the speech intended for someone else, were he thanked himself for attending. Funny, does he not have any thought going on when he speaks? Sort of a serious issue when your running a country, and your just reading what someone else wrote for you. But his recent unkind remarks about the Special Olympics sort of confirms a few things, even his gift of crappy American movies to the UK guy that is going blind seems really stupid. Then the fact he is giving NCAA basket ball stats, and attending parties, as the US crashes is rather uncalled for.

    I’m just saying if Bush did even half the stupid stuff Obama is doing, the media would stone him-as they sort of did, he didn’t do anything stupid.

    Anyways, if Obama magically times the perfection of a his supposed another bail out, to reduce the Dollar deflation, while prevent hyper-inflataion backlash-I’ll take back everything bad I ever said-perhaps buy a poster of him and hang it over my bed. 😛

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    Jeremy

    I receive a important phone call, but decide to not listen and draw a masterpiece which is rather common of me. But I couldn’t help to think surely coco, would deem this the best piece of art work to ever exist, as I find much the same. 😉

    Draw

    Yeah, I screwed up on the girl, she was supposed to be elegant but turn into She-Hulk. The pixel part was just actual notes from the phone call.

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    cocoskyavitch

    Jeremy, you made my day by sharing with the world the best piece of art to exist!

    Seriously, this is just what I needed today! I am smiling and feeling a lot better about the world!

    (About the Obama missteps-I really cringed when he was filling out his final four bracket. I guess the idea behind that is: “hey world, don’t panic-we have things under control-remain calm”. But, it didn’t sit right with me. And, the Special Olympics comment was really bad-I know that the Athens Olympics had these terrible bottom-heavy triangle mascots, and I was there like a week before the Olympics, and all the stores in the Plaka had them for sale. And, man were they ugly. So, during the games, I saw one of them fall down, unable to get back up, (because of the design as a bottom-heavy triangle) and I made the comment that these must be the Special Olympic mascots-but, what a cheap shot! Not cool. I’m lucky I am not president!

    Remember the mascots? http://www.mapsofworld.com/olympic-trivia/xxviii-olympiad/mascots.html

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    cocoskyavitch

    I woke up about a week ago, in my Post Hotel bedroom in Mittenwald, Germany, where I was enjoying a short ski vacation, to the sounds of the theme from Seven Samurai. Evidently, the Germans like their Kurosawa in Japanese with German subtitles, and at 3:00 in the morning. It was a delight to see it.

    It made me think that it is a film that nothing can kill. It was as riveting without explicable language (at least, to me!) as ever. Hail Kurosawa.

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    Fabien

    During the last and recent Berlin International Film Festival, the franco-german television channel Arte (dedicated to culture) displayed Seven Samurai in prime time and original version. (Which is not so frequent.)

    It might explain the 3 o’clock fancy you have met with.

    Or it is simply that this film is marvellous and universally renowned, I can’t say.

    Anyway, was the skiing good?

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    Vili Maunula

    Yes, we need skiing details, coco! 🙂 Good to hear from you again!

    Fabien, we got Arte at some point until our cable provider decided to replace it with something, probably a cooking channel. It had quite a lot of interesting programs, and with its seemingly random mixture of French, German and the occasional English program, always a fun channel to watch when you needed to practice your language skills.

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    Fabien

    I hope that your cooking recipes are succulent, Vili, for Arte is a very good television channel indeed and it’s mainly due to its status, goals and direction. (Public service, independence, no ads, cultural vocation…)

    In fact, I consider that it’s the best free television channel in France in every way.

    And I wonder about its vanishing in your country as its programs are supposed to be displayed (maybe partially) by cabled networks and national channels in Hungary, Poland, Romania, etc.

    Recently were displayed samurai-themed films, beyond Akira’s one: Twilight Samurai, Oshima’s Taboo… and series like Shogun (with Mifune and Chamberlain).

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    cocoskyavitch

    Shogun was also on German tv…I was beginning to wonder what was up.

    The skiing on Karwendel Mountain (right near Garmisch-the world-famous neighbor) was breathtaking, graceful, courageous, other-worldly (for those who are Alpine eagles) but, for me it was a slogging class with Klaus-my taskmaster.

    I loved taking the tunnel through the mountain to the snow ledge on the edge of the world. I love the light, the air, the mountain’s many moods-and seeing those experienced Alpine skiiers drop from the ledge into the abyss, and race like wolves down the mountain-it was amazing!

    I did get my Alpine certificate. But, it would be a misrepresentation to say that I am anything other than a novice.

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    Ugetsu

    Since this seems to be the ‘see y’all, I’m off traveling/sick/ whatever’ thread, I thought I’d revive it just to say that I’ll be quiet for a few months – I’m off on my bike to cycle the Great Divide mountain bike route, from Banff in Alberta in Canada down to the Mexican border in New Mexico if all goes well – or at least as far as I can get on a 90 day visa. I’m thinking of investing in an iPad when I get to the States so I might be able to keep in touch out in the wilds doing that, although I don’t think any Kurosawa is available on Apple store yet…

    If I do get the hang of this blogging business, I’ll be posting some pics as i go here.

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    lawless

    Yeesh, Ugetsu – ten weeks off from work? Best of luck with the bike trip. When do you leave for North America?

    I hope you are able to stay in touch and post some pictures. It will be quieter around here without you.

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    Ugetsu

    Thanks Lawless, yes, 10 weeks off, one of the few benefits of a lousy economy is how easy it is to negotiate unpaid leave! 🙄

    I fly out to New York tomorrow morning, then on Sunday I’m going to Canada. I should start the ride around the 17th or 18th August, I hope I’ll be posting some nice pics there after a week or so.

    But I will I hope still pop in for the occasional contribution. I’m hoping to use the break to catch up on my reading on Japanese cinema so hopefully the quality will improve as the quantity decreases 😐

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    cocoskyavitch

    Ugetsu, sounds like a great adventure! I have about 29 students in Korea at this moment blogging away. Very impressive stuff, actually-loads of great promotional stuff.

    I just don’t know how to do it all when I am teaching/traveling. Let me know how it goes for you. After all, you will be on the road hard-core.

    Safe journey. Can’t wait for updates.

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    Vili Maunula

    Enjoy your trip, Ugetsu! 4,500 km in 70 days? I hope you’ll be taking some days off! I’m really looking forward to your updates and pictures, and have subscribed to your travel blog.

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