Follow The Money

I just finished reading William Gibson’s latest novel SPOOK COUNTRY today (it’s a great read btw) and it reminded me of the whole issue of the missing money that went from New York in Iraq from 2003 – 2004 and then disappeared…. $9 Billion out of $12 Billion in cash that was sent to Iraq cannot be accounted for. So I googled it and found this recent interview on Democracy Now with two investigative journalists who have dug further into the story and uncovered some amazing facts.

With this much cash up for grabs, it’s easy to see why war is good for business… for some.

clipped from www.democracynow.org
Billions Over Baghdad: How Did $9B in Cash Airlifted From the Fed to Iraq Go Missing?
  blog it

Creationists Sue Critics To Shut Them Up

I heard about this on a recent episode of the Skeptics Guide To The Universe Podcast. Some guys calling themselves the Extant Dodos have been taking videos posted to the web by the Creation Science Evangelism organisation which “prove” creationist theories and then debunk them, putting the re-edited videos on YouTube. The CSE people don’t like criticism, so they have apparently threatened to sue the Dodos for infringement of copyright and have demanded YouTube take down the Dodos’ videos. The last recourse of people who can’t win an argument must be to sue your critics. The classic bit is that on their website, the CSE folks originally had this clause: “None of the materials produced by Creation Science Evangelism are copyrighted, so feel free to copy those and distribute them freely.”

Read more here.

Doctorow writes “Scroogled”

I’ve never really taken the “Google is watching you” conspiracy theories very seriously, but Cory Doctorow has cooked up a scenario in his new short story “Scroogled” which scares the hell out of me. It’s a story about how easy it would be for Google to do a deal with a neo-fascist Government to provide them with information on everything about everybody. In this era of the decline of Western Democracy that we are living in, Google becomes the new secret police, spilling the beans on your entire history. I’ve always held the opinion that “privacy” doesn’t matter unless you have something to be embarrassed about, but Cory’s story dramatizes the scenarios in which you can become a “person of interest” and then “disappeared” if you get in “their” way. You could end up a suicide in Cabo. Make sure you read it.
Scroogled
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Now playing: Beastie Boys – Off The Grid
via FoxyTunes

Burnside Recommends Bartlett

When I had Matt Marks on the show recently talking about politicians using Web2.0 to engage their audience, I wish I’d seen this example. Democrats Senator Andrew Bartlett (who was my guest on the show back in February 2005) has a video on his Facebook profile where recent G’Day World guest Julian Burnside QC explains why he believes why it is critical that Bartlett gets re-elected. Check out the video here. Not too shabby when the most visible defender of human rights in the country records a special video plugging you as “a person who is completely honest”. I think this is an amazing example of how to use Web2.0 correctly. This isn’t Andrew talking about how good he is – it’s Australia’s leading human rights lawyer talking about how good he is. Burnside carries a lot of weight in my book. Does something like this have an impact on how you are likely to vote?

Van Halen re-union rehearsal footage!

I can’t avoid posting about this. The mighty Van Halen have been doing some rehearsal gigs ahead of their tour which starts next week and some footage of the rehearsals has made it into YouTube. Thank god for the innertoobs.

Sure – Dave these days looks more like Glen Campbell than Thor The God of Thunder. But It’s great to hear his songs being sung in his voice and not Sammy’s weak-ass attempts. And Eddie proves that, despite the ravages of time, alcoholism and tongue cancer, he is still the guitar god he’s always been. Wolfie… looks, as someone suggested, like he ate Mike Anthony, just swallowed him up whole.

If you don’t wanna hear about it later… go runnin’ with the devil here.

G’DAY WORLD #293 – Adam Shand, Big Shots

Ben Barren, CEO of Feedcorp, joins me on this show to interview author Adam Shand.

As people in Melbourne will be very aware, in the last decade there was a series of high profile retributional killings involving various underworld groups that cost the lives of at least 28 criminal figures.

Adam Shand, a journalist who works for The Bulletin and Channel Nine’s Sunday program, spent four years researching Melbourne’s underworld and has written a book about it called “BIG SHOTS: The Chilling Inside Story of Carl Williams”. He became close in particular to “drug czar” Carl Williams who is currently serving a minimum term of 35 years in maximum security. Adam gives us a bunch of insight into how Melbourne’s gangland works, the background to the gangland wars over the last decade, the role of the Victorian police, the role of the Victorian mainstream media, and how it could have perhaps been avoided.


Big Shots

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    The G’Day World Theme Song is “Save Me” by The Napoleon Blown Aparts.

    Interview with Linden Labs / Second Life CEO

    USA Today journo Kevin Maney (who, incidentally, I jammed with on stage in SF last year) has a lengthy video interview with Linden Labs (the makers of Second Life) CEO Philip Rosedale here which is worth watching if you’re interested in the future directions of SL.

    Some of the interesting questions covered are whether or not Second Life is “too early” and will become the AOL or Newton of virtual worlds, why SL could become bigger than the internet, and whether or not Linden Labs will open source the platform.

    I think our exploration and understanding of VW’s like SL is incredibly premature. Every day I spend in SL I seem to realize new perspectives and opportunities. Are they too early? It’s a great question for LL as a company but for the rest of us, it doesn’t matter. The journey is the thing.

    G’DAY WORLD #292 – Jason Roks, The Real News (X | Media | Lab)

    My final interview from the X | Media | Labs event I attended last month. This one is with Jason Roks, currently acting as a Technical Advisor with The Real News, a non-profit news and documentary network focused on providing independent and uncompromising journalism. Jason talks to me about the vision for The Real News as well as his concerns about Net Neutrality.

    Become part of the G’Day World conversation.

    I’ve created a couple of groups inside Second Life. You can now add yourself to the following groups:

  • Friends Of G’Day World
  • MODM
  • The Podcast Network
  • If I knew how to link directly to those groups from here, I would. But I don’t. So for now you just need to search for them in-world. Or you can add “Cameron Switchblade” to your friends and check out the groups I belong to.

    If you’re a member of Facebook, you can ADD ME AS A FRIEND and then ADD YOURSELF TO THE G’DAY WORLD GROUP.

    You can show your love by buying me stuff from my Amazon wish list.

    Add me to your Twitter account.

    You might DIGG the show.

    Get the TPN version of Particls.

    Don’t forget to make use of my new comments line – +613 9016 9699.

    You can now buy transcripts of this podcast from Pods In Print.

    If you enjoyed this podcast, make sure you don’t miss future episodes by subscribing to our feed and leave us a voice comment!

    The G’Day World Theme Song is “Save Me” by The Napoleon Blown Aparts.