Pervasive anxiety is a permanent and recurrent feature of urban experience. Often navigated by an urgency to control perceived disorder, both physically and through cultivated dominant theory (early twentieth century gendered discourses to push women back into the private sphere; ethno-racial closure and control in the Black Metropolis of 1940s Chicago), history is punctuated by attempts to dissolve public debate and infringe minority freedoms (Wilson 1991). In the Post-modern city unprecedented technological capacity generates a totalizing media vector whose plausible by-product is the perception of an ambient menace (Wark 3). Concurrent faith in technology as a cost-effective mechanism for public management (policing, traffic, planning, revenue generation) has resulted in emergence of the surveillant city. It is both a social and architectural fabric whose infrastructure is dotted with sensors and whose people assume that they will be monitored by private/public sector entities and directed by interactive traffic management systems – from electronic speed signs and congestion indicators through to rail schedule displays –leveraging data collected through those sensors.
From the moment of bin Laden’s death almost three years ago in what was America’s biggest counterterrorism success, former Bush administration and some senior CIA officials have cited the evidence trail leading to the al-Qaida mastermind’s compound in Pakistan as vindicating the “enhanced interrogation techniques” they authorized after the September 11, 2001, attacks. But Democratic and some Republican senators have disputed that account. They described simulated drownings, sleep deprivation and other such practices as cruel and ineffective. With the release edging closer for the Senate Intelligence Committee’s report on interrogations, renditions and detentions, they hope to make a persuasive case. The report, congressional aides and outside experts said, examines the treatment of several high-level terror detainees and the information they provided on bin Laden. The aides and people briefed on the report spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about the confidential document.

How Hollywood Gets It Wrong on Torture and Interrogation: P1 (by HRFNYC)

Is 24’s Jack Bauer Teaching Torture to U.S. Soldiers? (by HRFNYC)

Three Torture Myths (by ForeignPolicyMag)

Kiefer Sutherland / Jack Bauer lays out his views on torture (by Chambonfan)

Dec. 15, 2011 marked the official end of the Iraq war and the end of an era with the withdrawal of all remaining U.S. combat troops from the country and their return home. Precipitated by President George W. Bush and his administration’s belief that Saddam Hussein was developing weapons of mass destruction, the war spanned almost nine years. It cost the U.S. $1 trillion and resulted in massive destruction and great loss of life, both military and civilian. On this historic occasion, Framework presents a retrospective of the conflict, documented by photojournalists of the Los Angeles Times. (via The Iraq war | A retrospective - Framework - Photos and Video - Visual Storytelling from the Los Angeles Times)

I’m still annoyed that so many Christians are concerned about the supposedly impending destruction of the world as their apocalyptic myth would have it, and yet remain in total denial of the impending destruction of the world as it is actually unfolding via global ecological disaster. The best way to follow their endtimes fetish is, of course, through Apocalypse magazine. (via 2008 December » URANTIAN SOJOURN)