Friday, July 29, 2005

Vertigo in Space

NASA STS-114 Mission Status Report #06 - 28 July 2005 - 11 pm CDT | SpaceRef - Your Space Reference:

"The first full day of joint Space Shuttle and International Space Station operations will be highlighted by installation of a cargo transportation module, additional orbiter heat shield inspections and spacewalk preparations.

Discovery's crew was awakened at 10:39 p.m. CDT by the song 'Vertigo' by U2 played for Pilot Jim Kelly. Capcom Shannon Lucid noted during the wakeup call that Kelly, whose nickname is 'Vegas,' was promoted to Colonel in the U.S. Air Force recently. The Station crew was awakened at 11:09 p.m. CDT by a tone onboard."

Vertigo vs. "tone"....Oh to be on the Shuttle! According to @U2, they also have the Rattle & Hum DVD on board. U2 has lots of great "space" songs, "Slug" would be other-worldly up there.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Bono of Turin

City of Turin presents Bono with honorary citizenship,
originally uploaded by

Following in the footsteps of Nelson Mandela and Bishop Desmond Tutu, Bono is overcome and succumbs to his inner demons recently in Italy.

Looming War of the Airwaves

Venezuela vs US: Looming War of the Airwaves

The Venezuelan Congress approved a resolution opposing a decision by the U.S. House of Representatives to finance radio and TV broadcasts to Venezuela with the aim of countering Telesur, a new pan-Latin American station.

Telesur, a Venezuelan government initiative undertaken in association with Argentina, Cuba and Uruguay, has already drawn the wrath of the United States even before it goes on the air this Sunday.

The U.S. lower house of Congress passed an amendment Wednesday "to initiate radio and television broadcasts that will provide a consistently accurate, objective, and comprehensive source of news to Venezuela" to counter Telesur's "anti-Americanism," in the words of Republican Rep. Connie Mack of Florida, who sponsored the amendment.

Telesur will begin to broadcast from Caracas on July 24, the anniversary of the birth of South American independence leader Simón Bolívar.

The station's goal is to foment regional integration with newscasts, films, documentaries and music by Latin American and Caribbean producers, and to provide a counterweight to programming from the United States, like what is offered by CNN.

"It is a preposterous imperialist idea that should not surprise us because we know what the U.S. government is capable of," said Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, referring to the amendment. "There is nothing more dangerous than a desperate giant."

What are we doing? We can't rest until all countries have media that we control/find acceptable? ...or.... let's cut PBS funding to $0 and instead spend that money for stations to broadcast to other countries (the ones we don't like).

Why pick a fight with these leaders in Central/South America? How does any of this help American interests? Really, somebody fill me in here....

China Shifts Currency

China makes major shift on currency |

"The Chinese move, which had been expected to happen in August, was hailed by the Bush administration as 'good news for the global economy.' Thursday, Treasury Secretary John Snow, who has made several trips to China to push for change, called the new currency program a 'very positive development.' 'We'll continue to closely follow the path of the yuan under this new and reformed regime that they're putting into place,' he said.

His remarks were echoed by Fed chairman Alan Greenspan, who termed the Chinese move a 'good start.' On Wednesday, Mr. Greenspan, in testimony before Congress, said it was in China's interest to allow its currency to move higher.

The Chinese move was greeted mostly as positive in Congress, too. Thursday, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D) of New York, sponsor of legislation that would place a 27.5 percent tariff on all Chinese products, called it a good first step, 'albeit a baby step.' 'It is smaller than we had hoped, but, to paraphrase the Chinese philosophers, the trip of a thousand miles can well begin with the first baby step.'"

Helps us and them, read the whole article for possible effects which include possible upshift in long-term interest rates.

Cool Idea

Salt Lake Tribune - Utah:

"'They came up with this idea . . . and they made it work,' she said. 'It's a perfect solution to an incredible problem.'
Today, the young inventors say, U.S. drivers use about 7.9 billion gallons of fuel each year to run their air-conditioners, which draw power from the engine. By adopting their contraption - which taps into the electrical system, using fans to blow hot air through five Peltier chips and then releasing cold air - they say the country stands to save 3.9 billion gallons of fuel annually, or about $10 billion based on current gas prices.
Furthermore, the product would free drivers from Freon - which despite improvements, remains an ozone-depleting chemical in current air-conditioners. The Peltier chips, which they purchased on eBay for $9.99 each, have a life span of 20 to 30 years and an unfaltering cooling capacity. And like every component in the Space Beast, which can be minimized in size to about 2 inches in width, the chips are recyclable. "

Once again, plain ol' electricity to the rescue. Way to go, guys, you're smarter than GM.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

1st anniversary of the watts4u2 blog

We're approaching the 1st anniversary of the watts4u2 blog. (thunderous cheer) Through trial and error, and led only by instinct, I've managed to collect a year's worth of....well, watts4u2 stuff. I never had a mission statement for this blog, and in the beginning I predicted lots of Bono & U2 stuff (check...what a U2 year, Hello!), but even I did not know what to expect from this pop media experiment.
What has the watts4u2 blog become in its first year? I blatantly copy & paste pertinent copy from various articles I find on the web and usually have a snappy, pithy (thanks, Bill O') remark or two. I don't see the point in going into a 3 hour diatribe (thanks Rush), or even shedding new light on these links, but I do usually at least give my opinion on the subject, and I'm not a slave to either party.
"This is the side I'm on and this article helps explain why" might be a good motto, especially given the ego-centric nature of blogs, but I hope it is a bit more than that. In a sense, it's like me reading the paper and pointing out interesting articles. My Dad is an expert at doing this as my Mom can attest. Fortunately, you don't have to read my blog if you don't want to ;-)
It's difficult to balance the personal family photos with the talk of politics, religion & war floating about on here. I haven't posted any family pictures in a while, and I'm considering a seperate site for those. I have also done a few original columns, but less than I expected to do in the beginning. I'll try to do more of those in the coming year, but for now here's a brief description of the watts4u2 blog: Links to articles/stories that are not getting enough (or precise enough) coverage in the media, intertwined with numerous U2 posts, and some science, too. I've unfairly bashed Big Pharma, the Supreme Court, China and John Ashcroft among others. I've tried not to be your run of the mill Bush basher, though it has been difficult at times I must admit, and I have not always succeeded in holding my tongue (or in this case, holding my laptop? holding my blog?)
Oh yeah, the blog anniversary, that's what this is about. I also want to take this opportunity to thank my loyal reader, Rives, the only friend who's added to the comments. Thanks Rives! I encourage everyone else to comment, too, even if it's just to make fun of me .
Well,thanks for reading and look for even more of the same in year 2 at the watts4u2 blog!

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Joined at the Hip

Joined at the Hip - New York Times:

Tom Friedman: "You know that cheap mortgage you just got? Well, who do you think subsidized it? In many ways it was China. Americans don't save anymore, and import more than they export. Normally, a nation that did that as long and lavishly as the U.S. has would have to raise interest rates to get other countries to hold its currency. But America has not had to do that, in part because China has been willing to hold most of the dollars it has been accumulating - gained from all the goods it is selling America - despite the low interest paid on those dollars and the fact that they have been depreciating against other major currencies.

How come? Call it the Tiananmen-Texas Bargain. After Tiananmen, China's leaders struck an implicit bargain with their people, argued Steven Weber, director of Berkeley's Institute of International Studies. 'The bargain is that China's voters give up the right to vote, and the Chinese government guarantees China's middle class 9 percent annual economic growth. China's political stability today depends on that bargain.'"

Great editorial from Friedman about our deal with China and the consequences we may face.

Pictures...we have pictures!

It's been a while since I added any pictures to the blog, so here are a bunch of 'em all at once. Some new family members, friends and a creepy bug. Enjoy!

'lil Callie

DSC01231, originally uploaded by watts4u2.

What a 'lil cutie-pie!

Train Kisses Jack's Ear

DSC01207, originally uploaded by watts4u2.

Caper Ludo Bluegrass Hamilton Means

P1010181, originally uploaded by watts4u2.

Congrats Nathan & Xan!

Bug Struggling

DSC08444b, originally uploaded by watts4u2.

Poor fella couldn't get off his back. Yes PETA fans, I threw him back in the yard after this shot.

Caroline & AGC

Phone1(20)b, originally uploaded by watts4u2.

live together in perfect harmony

Shark skin suits for ships

Shark skin saves naval industry money:

"Covering ship hulls with artificial shark skin could help ships sailing smoothly. The growth of marine organisms such as barnacles on ship hulls is a major cause of increased energy costs in the naval industry....

...Shark skin comprises scales that can flex individually from each other. Liedert produced a synthetic shark skin of elastic silicone, which has a significantly decreased contact surface.

This reduced contact surface makes it harder for barnacles to attach, and reduces fouling by 67%. When applied to the ship hull, this artificial surface enables ships to "self-clean", and a speed of 4-5 knots would remove all organisms attached with little adhesion."

Sweet. What a great idea, thinking outside the box....

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Free Trade Dream

America's Truth Deficit - New York Times:

"The possibility that the United States can no longer afford globalization, at least not as it now functions, is what opinion leaders do not wish to discuss. A few brave dissenters have stated the matter plainly and called for significant policy shifts to stop the hemorrhaging. Warren Buffett, the legendary investor, says the United States is destined to become not an 'ownership society,' but a 'sharecropper society.' But his analysis, and others like it, are brushed aside.

An authentic debate might start by asking heretical questions: Why is the United States one of the few advanced economies that suffers from perennial trade deficits? Why do new trade agreements, despite official promises, always leave the United States with a deeper deficit hole, with another wave of jobs moving overseas? How do the authorities explain the 30-year stagnation of working-class wages that is peculiar to America? Are we supposed to believe that everyone else is simply more competitive or slyly breaking the rules? In the last three decades, American policymakers have succeeded in closing the trade gap with only one event - a recession."

What's best for our trade policies? I don't pretend to know, but the course we're on is leading ever-downward, and to avoid the spiral, we need to make changes that include shoring up our manufacturing base.

War $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

Casualty of War: US Economy:

"The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have already cost taxpayers $314 billion, and the Congressional Budget Office projects additional expenses of perhaps $450 billion over the next 10 years.

That could make the combined campaigns, especially the war in Iraq, the most expensive military effort in the last 60 years, causing even some conservative experts to criticize the open-ended commitment to an elusive goal. The concern is that the soaring costs, given little weight before now, could play a growing role in U.S. strategic decisions because of the fiscal impact."

Pretty soon you're talking about real money here...

Sunday, July 17, 2005

China to send pig sperm to space

BBC NEWS | Asia-Pacific | China to send pig sperm to space:

"China is planning to study the effects of outer space on sperm by sending the semen from pedigree pigs into orbit.

Some 40 grams of pig sperm will be taken on board the Shenzhou VI spacecraft for its October launch."

Um, hey China, how about spending some money to clean up your pig business in SE Asia, you know, where the flu mutates and spreads from year after year? Where are the priorities? Their pig farms need basic sanitation and inspections, yet they spend all this money to monitor pig sperm in space. What gives?

Friday, July 15, 2005

Walter Jones on the up and up

AlterNet Mobile Edition:

"Like many others on Capitol Hill, the White House sold him on the idea that Saddam Hussein posed an imminent threat to the United States and that there were links between Iraq and 9/11. Angry that our allies saw such overwhelming evidence in a different light, Walter Jones insisted that french fries be renamed 'freedom fries' in House office building cafeterias.

Since the invasion, Jones has distinguished himself by actually paying attention to facts as the Bush administration's arguments started to show cracks. He began to see in Iraq what he saw Vietnam: a war justified by false pretenses and empty ideology that had the real consequence of needlessly killing American soldiers. Jones started sending personal letters with handwritten words of condolences to the families of every soldier killed in Iraq. The hallways outside of his Capitol Hill office are lined with the faces of the fallen.

My family recently went to Washington to thank Walter Jones for his efforts. One of those pictures in his hallway is of my brother, Sgt. Sherwood Baker. One of those letters he sent is on my living room table.

Sherwood was killed in Baghdad last year. His death has kept my faith at the fore. That faith is challenged, quite honestly, when I hear the warmakers extolling their belief in Christ as their savior as they drop cluster bombs and commit other people's children to the hell of war.

Walter Jones could easily be considered one of 'them' -- a Christian conservative. I sat next to him in his office and quickly relearned how wrong it is to label a person. As a Christian myself, I understood immediately that his personal belief in Christ has been the basis of his actions. The most obvious aspect of our meeting was the authenticity of his humility.

He began by speaking specifically to my mother and the mothers of two other fallen soldiers who were with us.

Tears have been easy for me to come by over the last 14 months since Sherwood died. The catalyst could be the unabated laughter of my nephew or the national anthem; anything, really, that brings Sherwood to mind.

When Walter Jones said this simple sentence, 'If I knew then what I know now, I wouldn't have voted for this war,' I found myself unable to hold them back.

I waded through the election rhetoric last year waiting to hear those courageous words. My brother was on the security detail of the Iraq Survey Group. He died looking for those non-existent weapons of mass destruction that President Bush used as a rationale for this disastrous war."

Yep, I was one of those...they sold me on the war too, with the lies of WMDs and Saddam's "intentions". It makes me feel like a fool now that the truth is plain to see, and I feel like they (the White House, neo-cons and spineless Democrats in Congress) took advantage of 9/11 and the country's desire to strike back and somebody, anybody. I'm afraid we've made things worse, the world is less safe and America is less safe because of invading Iraq. Anyway, I thought it was interesting to see one of our Congressmen in the spotlight, getting called out as a good guy on the up and up. Way to go Walter Jones!

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Directed Energy Beam

WN: Wired News:

"...real project is a non-lethal energy device called the StunStrike.

Basically, it fires a bolt of lightning. It can be tuned to blow up explosives, possibly to stop vehicles and certainly to buzz people. The strike can be made to feel as gentle as 'broom bristles' or cranked up to deliver a paralyzing jolt that 'takes a few minutes to wear off.'

Bitar, who is of Arab descent, believes StunStrike would be particularly intimidating in the Middle East because, he contends, people there are especially afraid of lightning.

At present, StunStrike is a 20-foot tower that can zap things up to 28 feet away. The next step is to shrink it so it could be wielded by troops and used in civilian locales like airplane cabins or building entrances.

Xtreme ADS also needs more tests to establish that StunStrike is safe to use on people.

But all that takes money -- more than the $700,000 Bitar got from the Pentagon from 2003 until the contract recently ended.

Bitar is optimistic StunStrike will be perfected, either with revenue from the laser pointers or a partnership with a bigger defense contractor. In the meantime, though, he wishes soldiers in Iraq already had his lightning device on difficult missions like door-to-door searches.

'It's very frustrating when you know you've got a solution that's being ignored,' he said. 'The technology is the easy part.'"

I'll bet these things really burn up th alkalines. This is exactly the opposite of the energy solution I proposed. (the part about harnessing the energy from lightning....not using electricity to make lightning)


Same old tunes, but with a new singer |

"Singers define the sound of rock bands to the point that many find it easy to overlook the departures of other members. For that reason, Robert Plant and Jimmy Page can attract Led Zeppelin fans in droves even without their former rhythm section in tow. Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey continue as The Who, despite the deaths of drummer Keith Moon and bassist John Entwistle.

Still, even that scenario can be tricky. Axl Rose has laid claim to the band name Guns N' Roses even though he's the sole remaining member of the original group. Some bands are defined by more than one member - it's difficult to conceive of U2 continuing if they were ever to lose a performer.

'They're our Beatles,' says Spin's Mr. Brod. 'I don't think there is any way people would accept U2 without all four guys. It just doesn't work.'"

That new show where contestants vie to be the next INXS singer is kinda sad, but I have been watching it. Watching it and thinking "Thanks God this didn't happen to U2".

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

American sub spied on Israel

IMRA - Sunday, June 5, 2005 American sub spied on Israel:

As a previous post mentioned, we have a strange relationship with our close ally Israel, and it cuts both ways.

"Sunday, June 5, 2005
American sub spied on Israel
American sub spied on Israel

Aaron Lerner Date: 5
June 2005

Israel Television Channel Two military affairs correspondent Ronnie Daniel
revealed this evening that the submarine Israel chased from its territorial
waters last November was an American spy sub. The vessel was identified by
the Israeli Navy 18 kilometers from shore near Haifa, and fled shortly after
discovery. IDF commanders admitted it wasn't the first time a Western
submarine had been intercepted spying on Israel.

Daniel indicated that Israel does not know what the spy sub was focusing on."

Thanks for the link from Israelpundit

Thursday, July 07, 2005

The List

AlterNet Mobile Edition:

"To the dismay of many of my more progressive friends, I've given the feds the benefit of the doubt on homeland security. I tend to dismiss conspiracy theories as nonsense and I take my shoes off for the airport screeners with a smile.

I'm embarrassed that it took my own ox being gored for me to see the threat posed by the Administration's current restricting of civil liberties. I'm being accused of a serious--even treasonous--criminal intent by a faceless bureaucracy, with no opportunity (that I can find) to refute any errors or false charges. My ability to earn a living is threatened; I speak on civic action and leadership all over the world, including recently at the US Air Force Academy. Plane travel is key to my livelihood.

According to a recent MSNBC piece, thousands of Americans are having similar experiences. And this is not Chile under Pinochet. It's America. My country and yours."

If our system can't fix problems like this guy's, then how are we supposed to stop real terrorists? We can't even make things straight for people we know aren't terrorists (Cat Stevens comes to mind, and Ted Kennedy, too!). I don't have faith in this system, and I bet if we spend 1/10 of what we've spent in Iraq, then we can solve this problem, and protect our liberties at the same time.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Who are you? American Hero The Voice of Southeastern North Carolina:

"In the 1992 presidential election, (James) Stockdale became independent candidate Perot's vice presidential running mate, initially as a stand-in on the ticket but later as the candidate.

Stockdale gave a stumbling performance in the nationally televised vice-presidential debate against Dan Quayle and Al Gore and later said he didn't feel comfortable in the public eye.

"Who am I? Why am I here?" he asked rhetorically in his opening statement. Toward the end, he asked the moderator to repeat a question, saying, "I didn't have my hearing aid turned on."

During the Vietnam War, Stockdale was a Navy fighter pilot based on the USS Oriskany and flew 201 missions before he was shot down on Sept. 9, 1965. He became the highest-ranking naval officer captured during the war, the Navy said.

Stockdale was taken to Hoa Lo Prison, known as the "Hanoi Hilton." His shoulders were wrenched from their sockets, his leg had been shattered by angry villagers and a torturer, and his back was broken. But he refused to capitulate.

Rather than allow himself to be used in a propaganda film, Stockdale smashed his face into a pulp with a mahogany stool.

"My only hope was to disfigure myself," Stockdale wrote in his 1984 autobiography "In Love and War." The ploy worked, but he spent the next two years in leg irons."

A true American Hero, I'm proud I voted for him in '92.
U2 used the "Who Am I? Why Am I Here?" quote during the Zoo TV concerts at the time. It fit perfectly with the "media blender" that was Zoo TV, where Politics mixed with Supermodels, TV evengelists, and Lou Reed and we were all walking blind like Dante's Inferno.
"Who Am I? Why Am I Here?", "Can't We All Just Get Along", "Wouldn't Be Prudent at This Juncture", "What you people need to understand...", "On Your Knees, Boy", "Read My Lips...No New Taxes", "I have caused pain in our marriage"....1992 was full of great quotes, these are just off the top of my head.

Thanks Admiral Stockdale, you are a true American Hero"

Nuclear Explainer

WN: Wired News:

"Sixteen percent of the world's electricity is supplied by nuclear power, according to the World Nuclear Association. The electricity is produced by 440 nuclear reactors in 31 countries.

The United States has the most reactors with a total of 104, according to the International Atomic Energy Agency. The reactors are responsible for producing nearly 20 percent of the country's electricity.

The country that gets the highest percentage of its electricity from nuclear power is France. Its 59 reactors generate more than 78 percent of its electricity."

We haven't built a new one since the 70's, but it may be time to look at the advantages of nuclear energy again as part of our overall plan for energy independence.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Thanks, China! The Voice of Southeastern North Carolina:

"China's current leaders eventually may kill more people than Mao Tse-Tung. And not just in China. Tens of millions worldwide could die because the Chinese ruined a drug that could have treated a deadly new form of influenza.

Chalk this suicidal stupidity up to the usual suspects: greed and secrecy.

Instead of saving the antiviral drug amantadine for humans, as international guidelines prescribe, the Chinese government told farmers to use it on chickens.

Chinese officials deny it, of course."

The World Health Organization needs to crack down hard on these Chinese farms...

Celebrating Independence in the Era of Empire

Celebrating Independence in the Era of Empire:
"In 1821, then Secretary of State John Quincy Adams warned that if America went abroad in search of 'monsters to destroy - the fundamental maxims of her policy would insensibly change from liberty to force.' While she might become the dictatress of the world, he predicted, 'she would be no longer the ruler of her own spirit.'"

Something for real conservatives to consider.

Not Dominion, But Liberty

Not Dominion, But Liberty:

"America was founded in opposition to empire. The Declaration of Independence was a manifesto against colonialism. And the founding generations abhorred imperialism.

Their opposition to empire was not merely rooted in their own bitter experience. It was, as well, rooted in a faith that American freedoms and democracy would suffer in the nation embarked upon a career of empire." this thing on?
No-one, no-one is blinder, that he, who will not see

C. D.: Bono Not So Great

The Limits of 'Live 8' and the G8 in Making Poverty History:

"A Christ-like Bono proclaimed they were there not for charity but for 'justice' but little detail was offered about what that means in the songs or from the stage where entertainment was dominant and edification virtually non-existent."...
"(Member of Parliament George) Galloway...was one of the few speakers to challenge Sir Bob Geldof and what he mocked as " Sir Bono, because he soon will be" for playing up to and lobbying Bush and Blair rather than confronting and denouncing them as war criminals."

"Yeah, who are these people to ask for such things as "justice" and an end to poverty, let's string 'em up!" seems to be the sentiment of this article. I guess somebody has to write a critical article of Live 8 that isn't all about the sorry coverage on MTV/VH-1. My take: Bob & Bono are being smart...their outright opposition to the war would make their goal (ending poverty in Africa) harder to reach. They are doing the politically smart thing, and I'm sure biting their lip on the war. It's a part of the brilliance of their plan...getting all sides to agree to do the right thing. Petty bickering against the war is futile, and they were smart not to fall into that trap.
Bono may win the Nobel Prize one day, but he'll never be a "Sir"!

Falwell on 4th

WorldNetDaily: "In the mid-1700s the sentiment among the Colonists was that they should not be paying taxes to England and King George III. It was the event now known as the Boston Tea Party (1773) that largely brought the 13 colonies together to oppose this taxation without representation.

An English-owned tea company in India had been losing money, compelling England to levy a tax on tea sold in the colonies. One of the great heroes of the Revolution, Samuel Adams, along with several other Bostonians, dressed as Indians and hurled the India Company Tea cargo into the Massachusetts Bay. King George III was livid; but he was stubborn and refused to lift the tax.

Later, in Boston Harbor, as the colonists threw stones and taunted British soldiers, the soldiers fired into the crowd, killing some of the people.

The theme of war was quickly in the air."

That's right Rev. Falwell, our Founding Fathers were "rebels", or even "insurgents", dare we say "terrorists"? Our country was founded on the idea of resisting empire, but now, ironically, that is what we have become.

Monday, July 04, 2005

LA Times Loves Bono

U2 news article - from @U2:
"Bono has been so persuasive in his advocacy of debt relief for Africa that he has won the respect even of controversial, ultraconservative Fox News commentator Bill O'Reilly.

O'Reilly questioned Bono for 45 minutes about African and economic issues before agreeing to have him as a guest on his show last year.

'I think Bono should win the Nobel Peace Prize,' he said in an interview last week. 'He's not a phony. If I can help him in any way, I will help him.'

Bono was on stage at the beginning of the London concert as U2 joined Paul McCartney on the Beatles' 'Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band,' and it was striking how essential he seemed to the proceedings. He has achieved a level of social activism Lennon and McCartney had only imagined."

Saturday, July 02, 2005

An Unforgettable Face

Moving moments from Live 8 in London - Live 8 concerts -
"There is much to say about the audience and the musicians and the event itself. But for me, the most moving moment came halfway through the concert. Activist Bob Geldof, the force behind Live 8 and the Live Aid fundraiser in 1985, took the stage. 'Don't believe you can't make a difference,' he said. 'Take a look.' A short video followed. It was an old video, two decades old. I had seen it before. It was a montage of photos showing children starving in Africa. They were beautiful and innocent and dying. Some were cradled in their mother's arms. The moms were starving, too, and couldn't even shed tears for their children because they were so dehydrated themselves. The video ended with the photo of a girl, maybe 3 years old. Her eyes were rolling back into her head. She couldn't have been more than a day away from death. I remembered her. I remembered her face from when the video first aired. It was the kind of picture you can't forget. Geldof then told the crowd, 'You made a difference then and you can do it again now.'

He then introduced that little girl. She walked onto the stage like a butterfly in first flight. She wore a flowing white skirt which showed off her beautiful skin to advantage. She was simply gorgeous; a poised young woman in her mid-20's. It was almost beyond belief that this was the same person. She survived.

I looked at the French reporter next to me. She was crying. Turns out we spoke the same language after all."

Yes ,THAT was quite an emotional moment, the kind that can make world leaders face the reality. She was beautiful in so many ways. A flesh & blood example of what can and must be done.

U2 & Macca doing Sgt. Pepper was cool, I mentioned that it was like a "passing of the torch" and my wife rolled her eyes at me. About 20 minutes later, one of the VeeJays said the same thing, so I wasn't the only one thinking it....
"Beautiful Day" was just fantastic, you can tell they have been touring and are in top form. The bird release was a nice fit with the lyrics, even though it did remind me of the Michael Jackson verdict. (Damn freaky California bird-lady!)
Other notes:
Madonna's spot was right on, emotional with the Unforgettable Face, she wins most improved from '85.
Pink Floyd, together again, wow! Money has never sounded better.