Here's the map, folks should add to it.
CARACAS: Voters in Venezuela narrowly defeated a proposed overhaul to the Constitution in a contentious referendum over granting President Hugo Chávez sweeping new powers, the Election Commission announced Monday.
It was the first major electoral defeat in the nine years of his presidency. Voters rejected the 69 proposed amendments 51 percent to 49 percent.
The political opposition erupted into celebration, shooting fireworks into the air and honking car horns, when electoral officials announced the results at 1:20 a.m. The nation had remained on edge since polls closed Sunday afternoon and the wait for results began.
This article was published in the latest issue of Works In Progress and is also available online at olywip.org and the usual places: Otto's, B&B, post office, library, Vic's, Cafe Vita, the Brotherhood, and many other fine local establishments.
Hogan v. The Olympian
If you have been paying attention to the recent local elections, you are most likely sore from banging your head against the wall. Our city council swung dramatically to the right (though I am sure they would call it the center), and we have a steep uphill battle ahead of us to protect our collective values.
Our choices this election were slim pickings to begin with, with Mathew Green and Meta Hogan being the only truly progressive choices on the ballot in the races for Olympia City Council.
Meta Hogan was defeated by Doug Mah. From the day she declared she was running, The Olympian, with the help of reporter Matt Batcheldor, took every opportunity they were given to paint her as only an “inexperienced homeless advocate”, neglecting to talk about substantive issues, and instead relying on a preconceived, biased narrative. They heavily supported Mah on their editorial page as well, using it as a forum to promote his campaign.
For some reason, however, Hogan losing the election was not enough. Days after the election, Matt Batcheldor wrote an article that accused Hogan of improperly spending campaign funds. I found this article to contain lies of omission, overblown statements, and parts of it were refuted by the very sources quoted in the article.
I thought this was another miss in Ridley Scott's hit or miss career. The glorification of Washington's character in this movie was egregious. Read his story and you will uncover a monster who killed a lot of people by his own hand, through his orders, and who the hell knows how many through the massive amounts of intensely strong dope his people sold.
The movie was poorly made despite that. Scott should have cut a lot more out of this movie than he did, but chose to go for epic length without epic quality (do we really need to see Denzel eating dinner and not saying a word? did that advance the story?) Little things bothered also. Scott, as accomplished and experienced a director as he is should not allow mistakes to show through like he did in this movie (green leaves on the trees in the middle of a New York winter).
Mostly my problem is with the story and how it's told. This would have been a much better movie had it made the villian (Washington) into the villain, and the hero (Russell Crowe) into the hero. It made them both the hero and in the end Scott can't make it work. DeNiro and Pacino were able to pull this off in Heat, Crowe and Washington aren't in American Gangster. Their one on one relationship paints them as allies, Crowe wants to bust the crooked cops, Washington wants to help him, mostly to save his own ass.
All in all this was an entertaining movie to watch, if you are able to forget the true stories behind the characters, and are able to forgive Scott for making it at least a half an hour too long.
"First, let me make it very clear, poor people aren't necessarily killers. Just because you happen to be not rich doesn't mean you're willing to kill." —President George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., May 19, 2003
From the open publishing newswire: I remember some years back, when the newly minted "Pearl District" first began to gentrify. People were moving into expensive condominiums and something called "artists' lofts," where they paid a grand a month to live in a fake warehouse and pretend they were artists. And then, those same people were showing up in droves down at city hall, complaining because there were people sleeping in their doorways. (Likely, some of the doorway-sleeping culprits were the real artists who had been thrown out of the real warehouses, which had then been torn down to make way for the "artists' lofts" and the condominiums.) In response, the city began cleaning up for the urban yuppies.
And when they get their way, they create the stale, dead world they moved here from in the first place. The city becomes nothing more than a glass and steel shopping mall. Plastic and surface and all for sale. The gritty culture is gone, the interesting people are gone, the stories are gone. All that remains is shiny, new things no one cares about, boring people just like them, and places to go shopping. And who wants that? Nobody wants to live in a place like that. Nobody wants to visit a place like that.
Double-click to play the video.
Cheney is set to undergo a heart procedure Monday afternoon.
WASHINGTON (CNN) — Vice President Dick Cheney will undergo a heart procedure Monday afternoon after doctors discovered an irregular heartbeat, his office announced.
Cheney was diagnosed with atrial fibrillation, an irregular heartbeat, when he visited his doctor Monday morning complaining of a lingering cough after a cold. It was then that the arrhythmia was diagnosed, the vice president's office reported.
More at CNN.com