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Chicago Man Sues after Prostitution Arrest

It was Rocio Palacios who first noticed the woman who appeared to need help.

It was 8 a.m. when she and her husband, Erasmo, dropped their 6-year-old daughter off at school and had picked up their 22-year-old daughter to go out for breakfast when they saw the woman waving her arms at 53rd Street and Kedzie Avenue last November.

The Palacioses, of Chicago, claim the woman approached their car, parked outside Manolo’s restaurant, leaned in to the passenger side where Rocio was sitting and asked Erasmo if he wanted oral sex for $20 or sex for $25.

The couple laughed, realizing this wasn’t a woman in distress after all.

But within seconds, Chicago police swarmed the family car, hauling Erasmo Palacios out in handcuffs. He was charged with solicitation of a prostitute.

[…]

Eight hours later, Palacios, who has no criminal record, was released from custody. And weeks later, charges against him were dropped.

[…]

The city wants more than $4,700 in towing and storage fees if he wants the car back.

I feel safer.

Full Story: Officer.com.

(Via The Agitator).

Alejandro Jodorowsky interview

Alejandro Jodorowsky

You’ve described your films as ‘initiation cinema’ and ‘healing cinema’, can you talk about what this means.

In order to talk about initiation and healing cinema, we need to talk about the ?industry’ of movies. The movie industry is a business for entertainment. And who controls this business?… The tastes and demands of normal people, no? But normal people represent mediocrity, not art; their entertainment is vulgar and gives you nothing with which to change your life. It’s like a cigarette; you smoke tobacco, and it gives you nothing, unlike marijuana, which always gives you something. That is the industrial picture.

In order to think about the ?initiatic’ picture, we need to break with industry. The goal of industry is to make a lot of money – this is the measure of a film’s art. Three hundred million dollars – it’s a masterwork! If it doesn’t make money, it’s an awful picture, a failure. But the initiatic picture doesn’t work with money, it works with soul, with spirituality. A lot of spirituality is a good picture, lack of spirituality is a bad picture. It’s different.

And then, what is it to heal somebody? In reality, the biggest illness is not to be what you are but to be what the other wants you to be – the family, the society, the culture. They tell you ‘You need to be like this, with these morals, with these feelings, with this economy, with this political thing, with this religion’. And then, you go and sign a form that puts you into a spiritual jail for your entire life. The initiation, initiatic cinema, frees you from all these forms, from the artificial world where you started out in the belly of your mother.

Initiating – the art initiation – reveals to you the hell, this prison, and shows you how to escape from it. And to heal you is to give you the opportunity to be yourself and to have your own opinion. Hitchcock, in movies, is an ill person. Why? Because he has disguised himself as a genius of movies, but in reality, he’s making his movies in jail, because he’s saying, ‘That is a system that will make terror. This, the public will love. There, they will be anguished.’ He’s directing your emotions; everything is done to hypnotize you in order to react in a certain way.

In a healing picture, they don’t say you need to react like that. You will react as you react!

Full Story: Fortean Times.

Burning Man tries to cope with cash

But in an analysis of the organization’s tax filings by Charity Navigator, a New Jersey-based nonprofit watchdog group, the Black Rock Arts Foundation earned an “exceptionally poor” rating. The analyst found errors in reporting, a low revenue-to-grant ratio that showed artists receive on average 27 cents for every $1 spent – less than half the industry standard – and a conflict of interest involving David Best, a local artist best known for his intricate temples that rise at Burning Man.

Sandra Miniutti, an analyst at Charity Navigator who reviewed the filings at the request of The Chronicle, said donors to the foundation should be concerned by its poor practices.

“This is not a financially healthy organization,” Miniutti said. “If I were a donor, I’d think long and hard before I sent money their way.”

Full Story: SF Gate.

Update in the Reverand Magdalen case

Today I (Modemac) wrote an email to Magdalen, asking how things were going and looking to see if she was going to lay her case to rest. She wrote back, saying there have been some new developments in the case. These new developments have caught everyone completely off guard.

I’m talking The Twilight Zone here.

For legal reasons, I obviously can’t go into too many details, becase there are other parties involved in this. Basically, some time last week, Jeff was in a car accident involving a brick wall, a lot of alcohol, and another passenger – NOT MAGDALEN’S SON, praise “Bob.” Because of past incidents involving him and at least one other DUI, he is now facing at least two felonies, a misdemeanor, and three traffic charges – which, combined, could land him in jail for up to eleven years.

All of this means that, due to the sudden extreme circumstances, Magdalen has temporary custody of her son at this time. There will be a new custody hearing in the middle of August. Jeff’s criminal hearing will be in September, but that is an entirely different matter.

BUT, that’s not the strangest thing to happen here.

JUDGE PUNCH IS BACK ON THE CASE.

He literally took the case out of Judge Adams’ docket and inserted himself in. He is now handling the case once again, however because of everything that has happened, he is apparently viewing the case in an entirely different light.

Magdalen is hopeful though apprehensive, for obvious reasons. She wants to appeal the ruling barring her from keeping SubGenius materials in her home, on Constitutional grounds.

Magdalen writes: “”Anyway, it turns out that we can pursue both a new appeal and this new county-level case simultaneously, so I would like to try to do that, but I would need $5,000 in new money to start the appeal, plus the $11,000 I’ve racked up in charges for the original appeal and filing these things. My lawyer has agreed to work for half his normal rate, though, because he is so angry about all this.”

There’s a little more to this, but this is all I’m at liberty to say. Magdalen doesn’t want to leave everyone hanging here, and we want you to know what’s going on. However, for more concrete details, we will need to hear directly from her.

Magdalen is still desperately in need of funds. Even though we all thought it was over, apparently we have entered yet another phase.

(Speaking personally, I’m sorry that this development has occurred, as I would have been satisfied if Magdalen’s son was returned to her through the legal system rather than a sudden act of chance. But the most important person involved is her son, and I for one am at least comforted by the fact that she is able to help him recover from this tragedy, for now.)

Full Story: High Weirdness Project.

Back Story.

Legal Fund.

(Thanks frogwatcher).

A Codex Serpahinianus Gallery

Codex Serpahinianus cliffs

Imagine Re-Designing Reality

Just hypothetically, of course. It only has to work on paper. You could also use legos, or design a computer program, or make several million dollars just to prove a point with it. Any which way, imagine being able to free up your mind enough to achieve a truly blank slate. Imagine re-building a culture that’s not based on suspicion, fear and struggles for control. How much could humans change? Would it take a few generations to achieve-or just a couple really great parties?

Full Story: Brainsturbator (includes link to PDF copy)

Court takes Sub Genius woman’s son, bars her from keeping Sub Genius materials in her home

From The High Weirdness Project:

After originally being scheduled for June 22, the decision of the appeals court in the case of Reverend Magdalen has been announced. In a brief two-page announcement, the court has awarded custody of her son to the father. Stating that the father “deserved” custody of Magdalen’s son, the court declared that the father’s home would be his primary residence, and the matter is being referred back to family court to arrange for visitation rights for her.

The decision cancels a number of paragraphs of the decision of Judge Eric Adams, in January 2007. However, it does not remove Judge Adams’ order for Magdalen to remove all SubGenius materials from her home. Even though her son is no longer in her custody, she still cannot keep any SubGenius materials in her own home, except for a specially designated “office.”

Magdalen is still conferring with her lawyer at this time, and has not yet made a statement.

The actual .PDF document of the court decision can be seen here:

www.courts.state.ny.us/ad4/Court/Decisions/2007/07-06-07/PDF/0753.1.pdf

Please remember that this case has cost Magdalen over $70,000, and she is in need of any donations to her legal fund that can be given. If you wish to donate to her legal fund, please click here:

www.pledgie.com/campaign/show/90

I just don’t have the words.

(via Trevor Blake on American Samizdat).

Got Khat? One reporters search for the substance in Portland

I wanted khat-and I wanted it now.

So naturally I called a cab. One cab company was recently fined $35,860 because their drivers were working more than 14 hours a day (among other things). It was just a hunch, but with stamina like that, I figured immigrant drivers must prefer some strong, exotic, and drug-test-proof stimulant to be putting in those long hours. And that’s khat.

Full Story: Portland Mercury.

Astronomers look to quark stars for a fifth dimension

If the universe has weird extra-spatial dimensions in parallel to the 3D world we see around us, then billion-dollar particle accelerators may not be the only place to find them.

Objects in Cygnus X-3 are under extreme gravity, which the researchers say would provide the necessary conditions for extra dimensions to affect matter.

Full Story: New Scientist.

Charlie Stross on why space colonisation is impractical

get my war on

(above from Get Your War On).

Historically, crossing oceans and setting up farmsteads on new lands conveniently stripped of indigenous inhabitants by disease has been a cost-effective proposition. But the scale factor involved in space travel is strongly counter-intuitive.

[…]

We’ve sent space probes to Jupiter; they take two and a half years to get there if we send them on a straight Hohmann transfer orbit, but we can get there a bit faster using some fancy orbital mechanics. Neptune is still a stretch – only one spacecraft, Voyager 2, has made it out there so far. Its journey time was 12 years, and it wasn’t stopping. (It’s now on its way out into interstellar space, having passed the heliopause some years ago.)

[…]

Space elevators, if we build them, will invalidate a lot of what I just said. Some analyses of the energy costs of space elevators suggest that a marginal cost of $350/kilogram to geosynchronous orbit should be achievable without waving any magic wands (other than the enormous practical materials and structural engineering problems of building the thing in the first place). So we probably can look forward to zero-gee vacations in orbit, at a price. And space elevators are attractive because they’re a scalable technology; you can use one to haul into space the material to build more. So, long term, space elevators may give us not-unreasonably priced access to space, including jaunts to the lunar surface for a price equivalent to less than $100,000 in today’s money. At which point, settlement would begin to look economically feasible, except …

We’re human beings.

[…]

Colonize the Gobi desert, colonise the North Atlantic in winter – then get back to me about the rest of the solar system!

Very good article, lots more detail besides what I’ve excerpted here.

Full Story: Charlie’s Diary.

Ghost detecting USB device

ghostradar.jpg

his is their latest USB, with a ghost detector attached. If it detects a shift in the magnetic waves within a room an alarm sounds and lights on the unit flash.

There are six different Ghost Radars and they cost between $60 for 128MB and $220 for 4GB.

Full Story: Gizmodo.

(Thanks Tasha!)

More strange USB devices: Solid Alliance.

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