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January 12 - January 18, 2004
January 17, 2004
Lock the Fucking Door

This is the last weekend I have to finalize the text of the book. Therefore, this will be conspicuously short, as I am shutting the door, locking it, unloading a crate of Appleton's and coke and facing off for one final 48 hour round of introspection and edited self-loathing.

Exciting Canadian politics news. A new conservative candidate has announced her intention to run for the head of the new chimera right-wing Canuck party. And she's hot. This is what Canadian politics needs - a sexy, 37-year old, multimillionaire woman CEO opposition leader to balance out our decidely unsexy PM. I heard she's twice divorced, a mother of two, and has a hidden lust for graphomaniac drunken poets with off-kilter staggers and a fondness for pouring wine over their heads in the middle of six hour bouts of intimacy. Like all other women, I suppose.

Still haven't heard anything else from the Accountant. Despite calls to murder him in cold blood in order to boost sales of the book this September, I don't know how much I would enjoy my new-found fame and fortune while eating prison pillow. Thanks for the advice, though. I'll let you know how it all progresses.

January 15, 2004
Pre-emptive Announcement: Tourette's Tournament of Evil

The Grand Idiots at are always looking for ways to increase their reader's pleasure and sense of well-being. They are also looking for ways to inseminate horses. Which is why we are trying out a new feature: The Daily Mingus Comment System, as manufactured by the fine folks at Haloscan.

If it works out well, we may even upgrade and add some colour and other exciting things. Let us know if you like it. We think it's fucking great. Community: here we come.

In other news, the ThinkTank at Zygote has branded one of our first contests for the upcoming year. In the tradition of George W. and the invasion of Iraq, we are discussing the event well in advance of its execution. The rules and regulations are a little foggy at this point (until we copy paste them from a real site), but the general idea will be this:

Tourette's Tournament of Evil

1] Contestants must read a selected Nunto from Mingus Tourette's upcoming book of prose-styled poems, Nunt.

2] Contestants will create a piece of interpretive digital artwork based on the Nunto. The artwork will fit in a standard wall-paper format, ie. 1024 * 768 pixels.

3] Contestants submit the artwork for judgement. Judgement will occur with extreme prejudice.

4] The winner will be announced. The winner will be awarded ... THE TOURETTE TOURNAMENT OF EVIL GAS MASK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

5] [Optional] Drunk on their own street credit, their own fleeting glory, and a shot of absinthe from Mingus' bellybutton, the winner will be carried through the streets of Balthazar on the back of a thousand slaves to a waiting room filled with virgins to be annointed with oil and set alight on Viking funeral barges.

Bonus] Sweaty Charles hand-delivers a signed portrait of Mingus Tourette in his fashionable 'Yankee DiaperWare'. Yeah!!! Now try clicking that comment button, right now, because this is a whole different system. Try it!! Now!!! This is new!!!

January 14, 2004
Spin, Counterspin
The White House is pointing messy fingers at Paul O'Neill about secret documents that he may have taken with him for his appearance on CBS, or given to the writer, Suskind. During the writing of Suskind's new book, The Price of Loyalty, O'Neill handed over 19, 000 pages to a Pulitzer prizewinning journalist. Maybe a few of them weren't declassified. So what. Both men are responsible Americans who can probably handle having a few secret documents in their possession. Hell, O'Neill has been reading secret documents since he worked for Richard Fucking Nixon.

How does this minor clerical error compare in any fashion to the main issue that O'Neill has raised? It doesn't - this publicity counterattack is the White House attempting to deflect major damage with as much counterspin as it can possibly muster. The administration would love to sink the idea that Bush started planning to invade Iraq well before 9/11, and took advantage of a nation's grief to do so. They would like to avoid any mention that the war has killed a lot of civilians, and of course, almost 500 Americans.

I recently found a sobering section of the entitled 'Faces of the Fallen'. It chilled me, just a bit. I'm a vociferous opponent of the American invasion of Iraq, but I would never put the blame on the soldiers. Mostly, I feel sorry for them because they are fighting a war for the old Texas agendas of Cheney and Bush, and so many of them have been killed. Thousands more have been badly wounded, and all of those soldiers have left somebody behind to mourn them.

Yet the White House would now like you to think that Former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill's possession of a few classified documents is more important than these 500 men and women.

What else can I say? Take a look, click on a few faces, and if you've got the stomach for it, read a few of those people's last letters. And then try, very hard, to ignore the Washington Spin, and focus on whatever it is that might pass for truth these days in a rotten America.


January 13, 2004
The EndGame Approaches
Spent the weekend in exile. Considered switching the order of everything, drank four shots of rum and decided these poor fucking poems should be left in the same order they've been in for the last year. At the point when I made the decision, I came to realize that the poems would be lonely without each other, that the poems in Book Four would be miserable if I moved one of their cohorts to the distant Book One. I don't know if they would get along, frankly. I mean, it's easy to move them around on the floor, each of their names on separate cue cards, and wonder if they would be better suited elsewhere, but I've come to accept that these poems probably love each other like brothers and sisters, that some of them are lovers, that some are obsessed with the poems six down the row, that some feel the need to possess each other, and to be possessed. They stare down the row, into another book, and say those words. Possess me. We are going to be held together and judged together and who loves me will not necessarily love you, but we are all in this together, into the breach soon enough.

The way I talk to these poems reminds me of the time I worked in a sawmill and I named the lumber bins, the high pillars of steel with hooks to catch dropping wood. There were forty of them, and I spent ten hours at a time with them, and talked to them, and laughed at their foibles, alone.

We would talk late into the night and I would tell them of women that kept me alive in the dark, of the shivers that a touch could conjure, of the way a woman's mouth could swallow one whole.

I would talk, these metal girders would listen, and when I would tell someone else about this relationship, people would shake their heads and I could see that they could not understand. What can I say. I knew them more intimately than anyone else. They knew my hands, and I knew their strength and we shared many long nights together. Those bins were my friends, like these poems are now. Some of them I love the way I love women, some I love like old drinking friends, some make me laugh with the one joke they always have at the ready. They are one, they are part of the greater poem, they are but lines themselves, and now, after this much time, I am one of them. I am naught but a poem. I am words on a screen.

I am but a line myself, swirling in the current of too many thoughts, too much of that woman, too much time spent in exile.
January 12, 2004
What? Bush Wanted to Invade Iraq Before 9/11? Say it ain't so, Paul.
Former treasury secretary Paul O'Neill has spoken out for a new book written by Pulitzer prizewinning journalist Ron Suskind. It is entitled The Price of Loyalty: George W. Bush, the White House and the Education of Paul O'Neill.

In this book, O'Neill asserts that George Bush began discussing the invasion of Iraq from the moment he took office, nearly a year before the 9/11 tragedy. O'Neill portrays Cheney as an unstoppable force, and Bush as a man who knew little, asked few questions and gave minimal orders. O'Neill says that in his 23 months in the Treasury Secretary position, he saw no evidence of WMD in any capacity.

If any of these stories are correct, and there is little reason to suspect that they are not, it means that Cheney is running the show, Bush is as stupid as he appears, and the current administration is a behemoth of a political opportunist that used the death of 3000 Americans on a September morning as a justification to invade a country that had nothing to do with it.

Learn more by reading articles in Time, The Chicago Sun-Times, or the International Herald Tribune. Or buy the book.

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