"For a while, Sigur Rós were totally and completely reliable— they’d release a brain-busting album, spend three years consulting with their mystic muses (or whatever) and then release another brain-busting album that was pretty similar to the previous one. But then came last year’s uncharacteristically wily Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust, and now the Icelandic group are doing all sorts of exciting things all at once.
There’s lead singer Jónsi’s upcoming solo album featuring work from Nico Muhly, along with his ambient record with boyfriend Alex Somers, Riceboy Sleeps. And now we get word of an honest-to-goodness new Sigur Rós LP, currently brewing at the band’s studio in Álafoss, Iceland, according to a post on their website. Details are scarce at the moment, but phrases like “slower,” “more ambient,” and “more out there” are being thrown around. The new LP is due out sometime next year.”
Posted by Ryan Dombal on May 28, 2009 at 4:15 p.m.
So, you’re in love with one of your friends, but she has a boyfriend and probably wouldn’t have sex with you anyway.
What you will need: 1 x knife, 1 x ring, access to a sunbed, the ability to grow a beard.
Step One: Place the ring on your wedding finger and avoid contact with your friend for a month.
Step Two: Stop shaving and use the sunbed to gain a tan.
Step Three: After a month when your beard is full and your tan is noticeable, remove the ring from your finger.
Step Four: Remove all your clothes and break into your friend’s house.
Step Five: Use the knife to cut your body in various places. Avoid the face. If possible, focus on your back. The more blood the better.
Step Six: Enter your friend’s bedroom and lie face down on the floor. Wait for her return.
Step Seven: When she enters the room pretend to be unconscious. Allow her to turn you over and try to wake you for a few seconds before you open your eyes. The injuries to your body will serve as a distraction to your nakedness. She will be more concerned about your wellbeing instead of fearing the naked man in her room.
Step Eight: When she asks you what’s happened you should ignore her questions. Instead you must act confused and ask the date. If it’s September 15th she will say ‘September 15th’ to which you must reply ‘No, what year is it?’
Step Nine: Upon hearing the year say the words ‘It worked.’ Pretend to lose consciousness again for a few seconds, implying that whatever it is that has worked took a great effort.
Step Ten: If your friend is a curious person she will probably ask ‘What worked?’, even if she doesn’t ask this question it is important that you now say the words ‘(Insert Friend’s Name), I’m from the future’ in your most deadpan voice.
Step Eleven: Pause for ten seconds to allow the incrediblness of the situation to sink in. There will be no reason for her to doubt your claim, because your beard will make you appear many years older and your cuts would add weight to the idea that you’ve come from a post-apocalyptic future where a war is currently taking place.
Step Twelve: Raise your left hand to your face. All women are very observant, so your friend will immediately notice the tanline on your wedding finger. If she is educated to a decent standard she will realise that you are married and your ring has simply disappeared, because clothing and other items cannot travel through time. Your nudity will support this.
Step Thirteen: Now comes the hard part - The monologue. In your own words you must give a speech in which you mention all of these key points:
a) You are married to each other in the future b) Her current boyfriend is dead c) The world is coming to an end. It’s up to you to pick a reason, but I would recommend a war against machines. This whole situation will be backed up by the Terminator franchise d) In the future your relationship is not going well e) You’ve come back in time because you can’t help but feel that she would have been happier with her current boyfriend if he hadn’t been killed f) Her current boyfriend is going to be hit by a bus on a day six months from her present. She should stop him going to work that day g) If she does exactly what you say this current version of yourself will be erased and you will never get married. If she questions this flaw in your time travel logic, because you cannot change the past, simply reference Back to the Future
Step Fourteen: Unless your friend is made of stone she will now be overcome by emotion, especially at your selflessness. Get to your feet and go to kiss her goodbye. It is important that you do this with the confidence of a man who has done this to her many times.
Step Fifteen: There is now no possible way that you aren’t about to have sex with her. You’re naked, kissing her, in her bedroom, agreeing to erase a version of yourself from history to make her happy. And as far as she knows you’ve had sex many times in a future that will no longer happen, so she thinks to herself that maybe she should have one memory of it.
Step Sixteen: After having the sex, ask to borrow some clothes then leave.
Step Seventeen: Shave off your beard and coat your wedding finger in fake tan. Carry on as if nothing has happened. There will be three possible outcomes:
1) During the sex some feelings that she didn’t know existed are awakened and she will leave her boyfriend for you. 2) Life will carry on as normal. 3) You will be filled with guilt because of this moral grey area where you aren’t entirely sure if what you’ve done counts as some kind of low level rape. You will take your own life by hanging, overdose or wrist cutting.
Less reliance on the U.S. dollar by international reserves would be widely beneficial
By Jeffrey D. Sachs
The People’s Bank of China jolted the financial world in March with a proposal for a new global monetary arrangement. The proposal initially attracted attention mostly for its signal of China’s rising global economic power, but its content also has much to commend it.
A century ago almost all the world’s currencies were linked to gold and most of the rest to silver. Currencies were readily interchangeable, gold anchored exchange rates and the physical supply of gold stabilized the money supply over the long term.
The gold standard collapsed in the wake of World War I. Wartime financing with unbacked paper currency led to widespread inflation. European nations tried to resume the gold standard in the 1920s, but the gold supply was insufficient and inelastic. A ferocious monetary squeeze and competition across countries for limited gold reserves followed and contributed to the Great Depression. After World War II, nations adopted the dollar-exchange standard. The U.S. dollar was backed by gold at $35 per ounce, while the rest of the world’s currencies were backed by dollars. The global money stock could expand through dollar reserves.
President Richard Nixon delinked the dollar from gold in 1971 (to offset the U.S.’s expansionary monetary policies in the Vietnam era), and major currencies began to float against one another in value. But most global trade and financial transactions remained dollar-denominated, as did most foreign exchange reserves held by the world’s central banks. The exchange rates of many currencies also remained tightly tied to the dollar.
This special role of the dollar in the international monetary system has contributed to the global scale of the current crisis, which is rooted in a combination of overly expansionary monetary policies by the Federal Reserve and lax financial regulations. Easy money fed an unprecedented surge in bank credits, first in the U.S. and then elsewhere, as international banks funded themselves in the U.S. money markets. As bank loans flowed into other economies, many foreign central banks intervened to maintain currency stability with the dollar. The surge in the U.S. money supply was thus matched by a surge in the money supplies of countries linked to the U.S. dollar. The result was a temporary worldwide credit bubble, followed by a wave of loan defaults, falling housing prices, banking losses and a dramatic tightening of bank lending.
China has now proposed that the world move to a more symmetrical monetary system, in which nations peg their currencies to a representative basket of others rather than to the dollar alone. The “special drawing rights” of the International Monetary Fund is such a basket of four currencies (the dollar, pound, yen and euro), although the Chinese rightly suggest that it should be rebased to reflect a broader range of them, including China’s yuan. U.S. monetary policy would accordingly lose its excessive global influence over money supplies and credit conditions. On average, the dollar should depreciate against Asian currencies to encourage more U.S. net exports to Asia. The euro should probably strengthen against the dollar but weaken against Asian currencies.
The U.S. response to the Chinese proposal was revealing. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner initially described himself as open to exploring the idea; his candor quickly caused the dollar to weaken in value—which it needs to do for the good of the U.S. economy. That weakening, however, led Geithner to reverse himself within minutes by underscoring that the U.S. dollar would remain the world’s reserve currency for the foreseeable future.
Geithner’s first reaction was right. The Chinese proposal requires study but seems consistent with the long-term shift to a more balanced world economy in which the U.S. plays a monetary role more coequal with Europe and Asia. No change of global monetary system will happen abruptly, but the changes ahead are not under the sole control of the U.S. We will probably move over time to a world of greater monetary cooperation within Asia, a rising role for the Chinese yuan, and greater symmetry in overall world monetary and financial relations.
"Various societies at different times have dazzled with their bursts of creative and intellectual energy. Historians have a penchant for dubbing them Golden Ages. Examples include the Athens of Herodotus, the Baghdad of Haroun al-Rashid, and the India of the Buddha. But though India has long been famous for its "ancient wisdom", the few historical sources that survive shed woefully inadequate light on the Buddha’s society. By contrast, far better portraits of classical Greece and Abbasid Baghdad are available to us.
Still, evidence at hand suggests that around 600-500 BCE, in parts of the Indo-Gangetic plain of north India, people were asking some very bold and original questions: What is the nature of thought and perception? What is the source of consciousness? Are virtue and vice absolute or mere social conventions? Old traditions were under attack, new trades and lifestyles were emerging, and urban life was in a churn, reducing the power of uptight Brahmins.
Philosophical schools flourished in a marketplace of ideas, and included chronic fatalists, radical materialists, self-mortifying ascetics, die-hard skeptics, cautious pragmatists, saintly mystics, and the ubiquitous miracle mongers. “Rivalries and debates were rife. Audiences gathered around the new philosophers in the kutuhala-shalas—literally, the place for creating curiosity—the parks and groves on the outskirts of the towns…. The presence of multiple, competing ideologies was a feature of urban living.” It was also an age of nascent democratic republics, which, like Athens later, did not ultimately survive the march of monarchy and empire.”…….click link for full article
"Do you remember what happened the first time an idiot publicly ran his mouth about measles mumps and rubella vaccinations leading to autism? Rates of MMR inoculation dropped by over 10 percent almost immediately. But don’t worry, not everything went down. One statistic went skyrocketing from 56 all the way up to 1,348. Do you know what that statistic was? The number of confirmed diagnoses of fucking measles. Oh, and by the way, the doctor who published that initial study, the one that planted the seed of doubt by initially claiming that vaccinations cause autism? He faked his results, and the headline of his fake study still infects society today."