Washington Post:

Italian photojournalist Gabriele Torsello was seized by five gunmen on the highway from Lashkar Gah, the capital of Helmand province, to neighboring Kandahar province, the independent Pajhwok news agency quoted Torsello’s traveling companion, Gholam Mohammad, as saying.

Pajhwok said its call to Torsello’s mobile phone was answered by a man saying: “We are the Taliban and we have abducted the foreigner on charges of spying.”

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Alec Soth:

But Modica wasn’t the only one assigned to the story. The much more prominent full-page intro has the following photo illustration:

This use of photography brings the medium down to the lowest common denominator. What is the point? If anything it pushes me away from reading the story. I understand that weekly news magazines are under huge deadlines and need to fill the pages. But do we need so much photo-filler? The photographs in another weekly, The New Yorker, are exceptionally powerful because of their restraint. What if Modica’s image was the only one used in the story? Wouldn’t it be so much better?

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Richard Hell, NYT:

On practically any weekend from 1974 to 76 you could see one or more of the following groups (here listed in approximate chronological order) in the often half-empty 300-capacity club: Television, the Ramones, Suicide, the Patti Smith Group, Blondie, the Dictators, the Heartbreakers, Talking Heads, Richard Hell and the Voidoids, and the Dead Boys. Not to mention some often equally terrific (or equally pathetic) groups that aren’t as well remembered, like the Miamis and the Marbles and the Erasers and the Student Teachers. Nearly all the members of these bands treated the club as a headquarters — as home. It was a private world. We dreamed it up. It flowered out of our imaginations.

How often do you get to do that? That’s what you want as a kid, and that’s what we were able to do at CBGB’s. It makes me think of that Elvis Presley quotation: “When I was a child, ladies and gentlemen, I was a dreamer. I read comic books, and I was the hero of the comic book. I saw movies, and I was the hero in the movie. So every dream I ever dreamed has come true a hundred times.” We dreamed CBGB’s into existence.

The owner of the club, Hilly Kristal, never said no. That was his genius. Though it’s dumb to use the word genius about what happened there. It was all a dream. Many of us were drunk or stoned half our waking hours, after all. The thing is, we were young there. You don’t get that back. Even children know that. They don’t want their old stuff thrown away. Everything should be kept. I regret everything I’ve ever thrown away.

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LA Times:

BORAT’S interviews fall into roughly two categories. He seeks out self-consciously genteel, almost impossibly schematic “life coaches” of one kind or another — people whose job it is to tell others how to date, tell jokes, find work, etc. — and barrages them with questions, requests and opinions that, despite being completely outrageous, consistently fail to get a rise or a reaction stronger than “We don’t do that here in America” or “That’s not a customary thing to do in the U.S. at all.” On the one hand, you have to admire his interviewees’ tact and even keel. On the other, you can’t believe that they don’t react more strongly than they do.

He also hangs out with “normal people” who happily reveal their prejudices. Shopping for a house, in one TV episode, Borat asks a real estate agent about a windowless room with a metal door for his mentally disabled brother, whether he may bury his wife in the yard if she dies, and whether black people will move into the neighborhood. At the wine tasting, he asks if the black waiter is a slave, to which the “commander” of the Knights of the Vine society in Jackson, Miss., replies that there was “a law that was passed that they could no longer be used as slaves — which is a good thing for them.” (“Oh, good for him, not so good for you!” Borat yelps, picking up an undercurrent that may not have even been evident to them.)

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London based street artist D*Face, via SocialPest:

Clocks ticking…
Thursday… Be there or…well… don’t be.

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LA Weekly:

Do you have a Brit-humor-obsessed friend who pesters you to get in line and admit once and for all that Steve Coogan is a comedy god? Maybe he’s shoved one of Coogan’s Alan Partridge videos in your hands to get you up to speed on the egomaniacally obnoxious, socially inept talk-show-host character that has made Coogan a deity in the U.K., or dragged you to a movie theater to see Coogan’s star turn in Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story. That person is a good friend.

But if you’ve ignored the pleas, let me speak for your friend and tell you that you can get in on the ground floor Friday night with Coogan’s newest character, Tommy Saxondale. He’s a bearded, cantankerous, acrimoniously divorced ex-roadie with one fist still raised in rebellion, the other around a pesticide hose. Tommy has left the world of Jim Beam breakfasts, rock-star chumminess and changing Peter Frampton’s vocoder fuse for the life of a vermin killer. And why not? Music has gone in the crapper since “electronic bleeps and farts” replaced awesome fret work, according to Tommy, but he clings to the notion that even from his comfortable suburban existence with shop-owner girlfriend Magz (Ruth Jones), he can still do his part to give the finger to authority. Tommy’s idea of therapeutic betterment? Calmly telling the session leader in his court-ordered anger-management class that the notion of anger being bad is “horseshit”: If General MacArthur’s reaction to Pearl Harbor had been “to go someplace quiet and do some deep breathing,” he insists, “you’d be goose-stepping into this meeting!” Rock and roll!?

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Shawn Whisenant Art and Design:

Well We’ve Reached The End Of 2005 And Moving On To The New Year.I Just Got Off A Huge Line Up Of Show’s The Last Couple Of Month’s.The Guava Skateboard Show In Maimi Featuring Myself,Barry”Twist”Mcgee,Kaws,Neckface,Space Invader,Futura Was A Awesome Event And I Was So Honored To Show My Work Next To Some Of The People I Grew Up Enjoying There Work.
Well Now It’s June,And I’m Still Amazed On How Good Things Are Going.The Last Couple Of Month’s Have Been So Good To Me And I’d Like To Thank Everyone For The Support From The Sticker Kid’s To Gallery Owner’s You All Rock!I’ve Been Working On Designs For Playground213 Children’s Book,Teeshirts For Manuit Clothing,A New Clothing Line Were I’m HonoredTo Be One Of There Head Designer’s Which Is About To Drop Next Month.Since Its The Summer Its Unless Gallery Show’s,Every Week All Over The World.So Peep The News section On Upcoming Events Near You.I’m Releasing Limited Edition Prints,Button Packs,Tees In July So Stay Tuned!In August I Will Have My Frist San Francisco Solo Show At Space Gallery Consiting Of Two Stories Of My Art,Full On Installations,New Video’s So It Should Be Good!I’m going To Be Having A Solo Show At The Beautiful Troy Denning Gallery In 2007 In New York City,Which I’m So Honored To Do,Where I’m Releasing My Frist Book Showing All My Work From My Lifetime.I Still Can’t Believe I’m Going To NY To Do A Solo Show?Well Everyone Take A Look At The New Street,News,Art And Updated Online Store Sections Of My Site And I Hope You All Enjoy.

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The Daily Sun, Nigeria’s King of the Tabloids:

However, narrating his own side of the story, Alhaji Mustapha told Daily Sun that he brought his children to the witchdoctor when he noticed their poor performance in their school work.
“I brought them to her for assistance when I noticed that their academic performance was unimpressive. The woman told me that they were witches responsible for my current travail.

“She actually locked them up in one room, chained their hands with wire for seven days and fed them once a day. She flogged them for seven days, claiming that she was exorcising their witchcraft powers.”
Alhaji Mustapha claimed that he had been rendered powerless spiritually by the witchdoctor; I could not do anything to save my children,” he said.

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What Would Tyler Durden Do:

Finally a trailer for the Quentin Tarantino / Robert Rodriguez movie “Grindhouse”. I think I read it’s a remake of “Sense and Sensibility”, but that might not be right. Rose McGowan plays a stripper with a gun for a leg, Kurt Russell plays a maniac killer and I play an hotshot Navy SEAL, kicked out of the service for a crime I didn’t commit, lost in the bottle but finding peace by helping the disenfranchised. In the movie, you may ask? No, my friends, in my incredible real life.

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CJR:

The AP’s Carolyn Kaster appreciates this approach but has a slightly different philosophy: whenever possible, do no harm. “You can go through this business and try to make pictures of impact and importance but if an image is to have a journalistic purpose, to communicate something, if you can communicate it in a different way, without causing harm, then I think you’re obliged to do that,” Kaster said. She described a photograph that she declined to take last week because consent was not granted: She approached an Amish school in the area and “without my cameras explained who I was and what I’d like to do, to take a picture of kids on school grounds with no one singled out.” The teacher told Kaster that the children were “very wary” and asked her not to take the picture. “I said no problem. I did not make that photograph.”

Kaster went to two other schools and got the same answer. “I had every right as an American to stand on public property and take that photograph,” she said. “I could’ve taken the picture and asked the teacher later. But that’s just how I approach this community.” Kaster added, “That might have been a key picture — children in the schoolyard of a one-room Amish schoolhouse,” and conceded that colleagues might criticize her for not having taken that photograph. “But,” she said, “I found another way to communicate what I wanted to communicate that I felt was within the boundaries of the [Amish traditions]” — by waiting for the children to get out of school and “be away from the school house environment,” finding a group of them walking home and talking to them and photographing them as they “hammed it up.” Said Kaster, “I could tell I wasn’t frightening them and causing them grief by photographing them. And I did have a job to do. I needed to make pictures of the Amish community, specifically children.” (As both Kaster and the Intelligencer Journal’s Dan Marschka pointed out, the Amish are baptized as adults and so children, not yet church members, are not under the same religious prohibitions regarding photography).

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NYT:

Russia is unquestionably a dangerous place for journalists — less so than only Iraq and Algeria, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. Thirteen of them have been killed since Mr. Putin came to power in 2000, a little more than two a year on average.

The killings — and the failure to solve them — have created an atmosphere of impunity and violence that extends beyond those whose writings or broadcasts anger those in government or business. That was also lamented here, inside an airy white-stone hall at Troyekurovskoye Cemetery.

Anna Politkovskaya’s killing was the third mob-style assassination of prominence in the last month alone. Andrei Kozlov, the first deputy chairman of the Central Bank, who led efforts to clean up the dirty money of the country’s banking system, was killed as he left a soccer game on Sept. 13. Less than two weeks later, Enver Ziganshin, the chief engineer of Kovytka, a potentially lucrative gas field in Siberia at the center of a dispute with the government, was shot in the back and head at his bathhouse in the countryside.

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NYT:

In Austria this month, right-wing parties also polled well, on a campaign promise that had rarely been made openly: that Austria should start to deport its immigrants. Vlaams Belang, too, has suggested “repatriation” for immigrants who do not made greater efforts to integrate.

The idea is unthinkable to mainstream leaders, but many Muslims still fear that the day — or at least a debate on the topic — may be a terror attack away.

“I think the time will come,” said Amir Shafe, 34, a Pakistani who earns a good living selling clothes at a market in Antwerp. He deplores terrorism and said he himself did not sense hostility in Belgium. But he said, “We are now thinking of going back to our country, before that time comes.”

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LA Times:

At least, Yudin said, there is the sound of birds chirping in the trees. During most of 2004, when a toxic plume from the plant killed off many gardens in Karabash and some of the surrounding countryside, the town was eerily silent.

Even the butterflies left.

Yudin laughed.

“It’s funny that birds are much smarter than we are,” he said.

“They flew away.”

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Washington Post:

“I just told him I’m preceding. I wasn’t going to back down,” Berntsen said in an interview last week. “It was very awkward.”

Berntsen resigned, wrote his book and, as required, submitted “Jawbreaker: The Attack on Bin Laden and Al Qaeda: A Personnel Account by the CIA’s Key Field Commander” to the CIA’s Publications Review Board, which redacted about five pages of the 400-plus-page manuscript. “They were very efficient and thoughtful,” he said last week.

Then the board sent it to the Directorate of Operations, where Berntsen had worked, as is the practice. There, Berntsen contends, “Mr. Foggo made good on his word” and 70 pages were blacked out.

Berntsen’s lawsuit, filed earlier this year in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, asserts that the CIA violated his First Amendment rights in redacting as much as it did.

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Wooster Collective:

Looking closely at the sign, it says:

An Ordinary Building

This building was designed by an unknown architect in an irrelevant epoch and never belonged to an important person. The complex does not show any original architectural solutions, nor does it conserve any important works of art within. No memory is kept of any significant historical events occurring on this site. No known personality was born, lived or died here, nor is any excellent artist or sublime poet still working here.

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NYT:

Anna Politkovskaya was found dead by a neighbor shortly after 5 p.m. A Makarov 9-millimeter pistol had been dropped at her side, the signature of a contract killing, Vitaly Yaroshevsky, the deputy editor of Novaya Gazeta, said in a telephone interview.

“We are certain that this is the horrible outcome of her journalistic activity,” he said. “No other versions are assumed.”

The former Soviet president, Mikhail S. Gorbachev, a shareholder of the newspaper where Ms. Politkovskaya worked, called her killing “a savage crime.”

“It is a blow to the entire democratic, independent press,” Mr. Gorbachev told the Interfax news agency. “It is a grave crime against the country, against all of us.”

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BBC:

Anna Politkovskaya, a Russian journalist known as a fierce critic of the Kremlin’s actions in Chechnya, has been found dead in Moscow.
She was found shot dead near her home in a block of flats in the capital.

A pistol and four bullets were found near her body, the Interfax news agency said, quoting unnamed police sources.

The award-winning journalist fell seriously ill with food poisoning in 2004, which some suspected was an attempt on her life.

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Manowar.Com:

“Gods Of War” has evolved into a multi-part epic cycle which will include tributes to the Gods of Valhalla. Continuing MANOWAR’s mission to never stray from their heavy metal style, “Gods Of War” will present a new level of heaviness, intensity and brutality to the MANOWAR mythos. “With this kind of theme… when you are paying tribute to Odin, the God of War, country music or jazz would not create the appropriate mental imagery and would not do justice to the Father of the Gods himself,” says MANOWAR bassist and founder Joey DeMaio. “Heavy Metal is needed to tell this tale.”

With “Gods Of War”, MANOWAR is calling all warriors to enter Valhalla. Let the battle begin!

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Onion:

“In order to come to the aid of the hip-hop nation, we must regrettably ask those men who heroically served the Black Planet to once again don their fatigues and take up their plastic arms,” S1W Chief and Public Enemy Minister Of Information Professor Griff said. “We have no more options. It’s not as though we can simply call 911. That would be a joke.”

Here.

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