SUPERFLEX


MAY 20-22. 2005
FREE BEER AT VOLKSB?úHNE, BERLIN
At the Volksb?ºhne, Berlin – we are launching the open source beer FREE BEER 1.1. We are applying modern open source ideas and methods on a traditional real-world product – beer. The recipe and the whole brand of FREE BEER is published under a Creative Commons license, which basically means that anyone can use the recipe to brew the beer or to create a derivative of the recipe. You are free to earn money from FREE BEER, but you have to publish the recipe under the same license and credit our work. You can use all the design and branding elements, and are free to change them at will, provided you publish your changes under the same license (“Attribution & Share Alike”).

Creative Commons license

OUR BEER
The first open source beer “Vores ?òl” (our beer) was made with a group of students at the IT-University in Copenhagen.

more on OUR BEER:
http://voresoel.dk

ERSATZSTADT ‚Äì REPR?ÑSENTATIONEN DES URBANEN
VOLKSB?úHNE AM ROSA LUXEMBURG-PLAT
more info.. http://ersatzstadt.org

More on hero McSwane.


By John Aguilar, Rocky Mountain News
May 20, 2005

The fallout from an Arvada teenager’s investigative piece for his school newspaper is one reason Army recruiters nationwide will “stand down” today for a refresher class in ethics.

David McSwane never thought his story would get so big when he gave his 15-year-old friend a camcorder, his 11-year-old sister a still camera, and enlisted his mother to keep him out of legal hot water.

When McSwane was finished, Army recruiters in Golden had been caught encouraging him to manufacture a fake high school diploma and accompanying him to a head shop to buy him a drug detox kit.

U.S. Sen. Wayne Allard, R-Colo., called on the Army secretary to launch an investigation. The Army subsequently suspended McSwane’s recruiters and began a probe, which is still ongoing.

Douglas Smith, a spokesman for the Army recruiting command in Fort Knox, Ky., said that although the one-day recruitment freeze at 1,700 offices is partly routine, it is largely the result of recent allegations of impropriety.

“We’re going to reassess how Army values play into our jobs. We’re going to address the kind of improprieties that we’ve seen. There’s no avoiding the issue,” he said.

Among the Army’s concerns are those uncovered by the 17-year-old Arvada West High School honors student with a full class schedule and after-school job.

McSwane’s story nearly died before it ever got off the ground.

“I told him not to do it,” said his mother, Shelly Hansen. “I thought he might get arrested.”

Her son, who had read about military enlistment challenges and had seen recruiters working the grounds of Arvada West, wanted to know “just how far will Army recruiters go to get one more.”

McSwane had been inspired by the 1961 book Black Like Me by John Howard Griffin, who darkened his skin and documented what it was like to live as a black man in the segregated South.

But McSwane had another motivation when he began his investigation in January.

“I wanted to do something cool, go undercover and do something unusual,” he said this week.

The premise was simple: McSwane would try to join the Army as a high school dropout with an insatiable fondness for marijuana and psychedelic mushrooms. No matter how stoned and stupid McSwane acted, a pair of recruiters wouldn’t wouldn’t let him go.

McSwane insisted to the recruiters that he couldn’t lick his drug habit, but one recruiter told him to take some “stuff” that would “clean you out.” It turned out to be a detoxification kit the recruiter said had worked with other applicants. McSwane said the recruiter even offered to pay half the cost of the kit.

McSwane’s claim of being a dropout didn’t discourage his recruiters either. He was encouraged to take a high school equivalency diploma exam, which McSwane deliberately failed. That’s when he said one recruiter introduced him to the “home-school option.”

McSwane was told to order a phony diploma and transcripts from an online diploma mill.

“It can be like Faith Hill Baptist School or something – whatever you choose,” one of the recruiters can be heard saying in a taped phone call.

Several days and $200 later, McSwane became a proud graduate of Faith Hill Baptist High School in Longmont.

“I ordered my four years of high school sweat with a few clicks,” he later wrote.

But McSwane knew that if his story was going to hold up, he would need proof. So he enlisted his sister, Victoria, to pretend that she was keeping a photo album of her big brother’s military accomplishments. She took pictures of McSwane shaking hands with his recruiters.

McSwane convinced a high school friend to operate a video camera across the street from a head shop while one of the recruiters drove him to the store to buy a drug detox kit. He even got his mother to covertly slip him some cash during the episode after the head shop refused to accept her credit card.

Since McSwane didn’t wear a wire on most of his visits to the recruiting office, he parlayed his natural forgetfulness as a supposed druggie into an opportunity to tape his recruiters’ during phone calls.

“I’m a drug addict, so I acted confused and asked him to explain things over again,” he said.

McSwane stopped reporting the story in March when one of the recruiters asked him to strip down for a weigh-in and sign several legally binding documents.

McSwane’s article ran in the March 17 issue of The Westwind.

McSwane’s next move was to make certain his story didn’t languish on an inside page of his school paper. He shopped it out to local and national media outlets. Only CBS 4 News called back.

The station broadcast its report, “How Far Will the Army Go?,” on April 28 and played parts of McSwane’s audio and videotapes.

The high school senior was soon up to his ears in media requests.

Ultimately, McSwane wants more than just media attention. He thinks recruiters, including the two he exposed, are overwhelmed by pressure to make monthly quotas.

“I feel bad they’re taking the fall. It’s their bosses who are telling them to do this. The job is impossible when you have a war going on,” he said.

McSwane graduates Thursday and will attend Colorado State University in Fort Collins this fall. His planned major: journalism.

For now, though, McSwane has things other than exposes on his mind.

“I’m still in high school. I want to still have some fun,” he said.

Recruiting Office Shot Up After TV Report

Army Suspends Recruiter, Calls Another Back For Investigation

POSTED: 9:03 am MDT April 29, 2005
UPDATED: 1:52 pm MDT April 29, 2005

DENVER — A U.S. Army and Marine Recruiting office was shot up after a television report alleged that recruiters coaxed a would-be recruit to lie.

Police were called to the store front office at 7355 W. 88th Ave. Friday morning on a criminal mischief complaint.

Officers found shattered glass at the front of the office and said that it was the result of eight gunshots fired into the building in the early-morning hours Friday.

Four large windows and two doors will have to be replaced as a result of the damage.

Police said they believe the incident is related to an investigative report broadcast Thursday night that said two Army recruiters who work at the office are under investigation for allegedly telling a teenager he could enlist by making a fake diploma and using detox pills to pass a drug test.

According to the report, 17-year-old David McSwane made up a story about being a high school dropout and drug user to see how far recruiters would go.

McSwane is actually an honor student and works for his high school’s newspaper in Arvada.

But when he called a local Army recruiter, he said he was a high school drop out. McSwane recorded the recruiter telling him he could make a fake diploma from a nonexistent high school.

McSwane also said he had a marijuana problem — and the recruiter suggested detoxification capsules, according to the recording. Another recruiter drove McSwane to a store to purchase the detox kit.

Lt. Col. Jeffrey Brodeur, who oversees Army recruiting for the region, was shocked and angered after hearing his recruiters on tape. He said they violated trust, integrity, honor and duty.

One recruiter was suspended from recruiting Friday until completion of the Army investigation. The other recruiter, who was in transition to a new duty location, was called back to the area for the investigation

Brodeur said he neither pressures nor punishes recruiters if quotas aren’t met, though there are rewards when goals are surpassed. He promised a full investigation into the matter.

“We began conducting an investigation immediately upon finding out about the allegations made toward these recruiters and are required to complete the investigation within 30 days,” said Brodeur.

Any person with information regarding on the shooting at the recruiting office is asked to <a href="mailto:editor@arthurmag.com"email Arthur magazine’s editor.

Arthur Machen, the Apostle of Wonder

the 27 April 2005 Times Literary Supplement
Arthur Machen, the Apostle of Wonder
Phil Baker

THE LIFE OF ARTHUR MACHEN
Edited by Roger Dobson
John Gawsworth

394pp. | Leyburn: Tartarus. Available upon application to the Friends of Arthur Machen, 78 Greenwich South Street, London SE10 8UN. | 1 8726 2181 3

Notably independent of contemporary fashionî was Jocelyn Brookeís comment on Arthur Machen, which was admirably diplomatic, if lacking the flourish of J. P. Hoganís ìFew people read Arthur Machen nowadays; he is the preserve, zealously guarded, of lonely men who step into the gutter when the bowler-hatted jostle them in the streetî. Interviewing Machen at his Lisson Grove flat (ìa shrine to which no one pays homageî) in 1919, Ben Hecht felt that the writer now lived in an era that ignored him, while clinging to an era that had overlooked him, in effect pinning him down as a minor Nineties writer.

That was before the 1920s revival, after which Machen was allowed to join the ranks of the reforgotten, where he has largely remained until quite recently. ìThe Apostle of Wonderî is nowadays intensely appreciated, and although he notionally dealt in tales of horror, he is surely read more in hope than in dread. For all his nightmare unveilings and horrible transmogrifications, Machen was fighting a rearguard action to keep open a space of romantic and mystical possibility, resisting the ìdisenchantment of the worldî that Max Weber saw accompanying the rise of science.

Much of Machenís work involves a re-enchantment of London as a place of infinite and ultimately mystical possibilities, like the fabulous glimpsed park that opens up in one of his finest stories, ìNî, within a transfigured Stoke Newington. Barry Humphries has described discovering Machenís London by reading him in Australia, so that when he finally arrived in 1959, ìI wandered in the streets that I felt I had got to know through the Machen guidebook, in Clerkenwell, in Camden Town, in Kentish Town, in Islington. The gaslight was still there to my surprise, there were still dark corners, there were traces of the eighteenth century . . .î. Humphries was also an enthusiastic reader of M. P. Shiel, the Caribbean fantasy writer, and admired the John Gawsworth introduction to Shielís Best Short Stories. In his own introduction to Gawsworthís Life of Arthur Machen, Humphries recalls wandering around Notting Hill Gate, then run-down and associated with race riots and the murderer Christie, and finding himself in a pub on Westbourne Grove called the Alma. He noticed an old drunk, with ìthe look of a failed actor or minor literary gentî, holding forth to a small group of duffel-coated listeners, and it was an appropriately Machenesque moment when the barman told him this character was none other than Gawsworth: ìI decided I had been led to this horrible little pub by Fateî.

Gawsworth, his early promise destroyed by drink, was an abject figure when Humphries befriended him. Stubbornly faithful to the 1890s poets and the Georgians, Gawsworth was living in a bedsitter with Shielís ashes in a biscuit tin on the mantelpiece, putting a pinch in the stew for special guests. He would quote great chunks from the minor poets he championed and anthologized ñ poets such as Herbert Palmer, Wilfred Rowland Childe, Richard Middleton, and A. S. J. Tessimond ñ but his favourite writer was Machen, and he would often speak of a biography he had written. ìI didnít much believe in the existence of this bookî, Humphries says.

Gawsworth was inspired to write it at the age of eighteen or so, after hearing Caradoc Evans declare, ìIt isnít Machen writing, itís God writing through himî, and in his brief preface he justifies the project by what was then its pioneer aspect. It has since been outpaced by other biographical works, but it is good that it has survived to be published at all. What was evidently a chaotic 466-page manuscript has been excellently edited by Roger Dobson, who displays an impressive knowledge of Machen in his ìNotes on the Textî. Gawsworthís narrative has its faults, but it is an extraordinary achievement for a writer of around twenty-one, and it gives a solidly chronological account of Machenís life up until 1933 (he lived on, without much further incident, until 1947).

Unfortunately, it is lacking in discussion of Arthur Machenís work, which Gawsworth probably assumed readers would know, and in that respect Aidan Reynolds and William Charltonís Arthur Machen (1963) should be read first. Instead, Gawsworth is particularly attuned to bibliographical details ñ he was already dealing in books and manuscripts ñ and the difficulties of making a living as a man of letters. He follows Machen from the Welsh landscapes of his childhood, through his lean period in his London ìdiggingsî, as they were then called, when he lived on dry bread, green tea and tobacco, and catalogued occult books for the dealer George Redway. This, no doubt, fed his later loathing of the occult, although he briefly joined the Order of the Golden Dawn and was a lifelong friend of the occult scholar A. E. Waite, author of The Book of Black Magic and of Pacts, who published Machenís fiction in his role as Editor of Horlickís Magazine, the malted milk periodical. Machen had some money of his own in the 1890s, which were among his most productive years, but even then his work was not popular: the Manchester Guardian described The Great God Pan, published with a Beardsley cover, as ìthe most acutely and intentionally disagreeable book we have yet seen in English. We could say more, but refrain from doing so for fear of giving such a work advertisementî. Machen later published a volume of his bad reviews, Precious Balms.

The renewed need to earn a living forced Machen into journalism, which he likened to being ìcaptured by a malignant tribe of anthropoid apesî. For better or worse he was now in step with his time, writing not just news (he covered the Siege of Sidney Street from a nearby rooftop, while the trapped anarchists shot it out with the Army) but nostalgic causeries on bygone London and all things olde worlde. His greatest journalistic coup came in the First World War when he created ìThe Bowmenî and the Angels of Mons, a piece of supernatural propaganda which took on a life of its own and even seems to have fooled the recent Oxford Dictionary of Folklore.

Machen did what he could to discourage Gawsworth from writing his book, but in the end he helped. There is a good deal of unfamiliar material, including real-life prototypes for several characters, the circumstances of his meeting his first wife, Amy Hogg, and how he knew Shiel. There are details of Machenís earliest journalism, and of a later lost work, ìFleet Street Diversions and Digressionsî. We also learn why ñ at least according to Machen ñ Henry Harland never asked him to contribute to The Yellow Book: Machen had offended him with his enthusiasm for the Sherlock Holmes stories, then thought to be very vulgar.

Other curiosities include a brief Machen text called ìSpoof Tennisî, arising from a practical joke, and an unexpected mention of The Hill of Dreams in the LeopoldñLoeb murder trial. A few larger mysteries are also aired, including a shadowy commercial syndicate who aimed to find the Ark of the Covenant, and an odd story about a plan to form a secret society purely to entrap one particular person, which is like something Machen himself might have written.

It is a pity Gawsworth did not tease out more about one of the most enigmatic episodes in Machenís life, the spiritual experience that followed his wifeís death from cancer in 1899. Machen reports he was in a desperately low state when he resorted to ìa processî. Before long, walking up Rosebery Avenue towards Sadlers Wells, he found himself ìwalking on airî with, the pavement bouncing like the deck of a ship, and he experienced ìgreat gusts of incense . . . the odours of rare gums that seemed to fume before invisible altars in Holborn, in Claremont Square, in grey streets of Clerkenwellî. Ingenious explanations have been suggested for all this, from unsavoury magical practices to experimentation with his wifeís opiates, but it may simply be the heightened perception sometimes associated with bereavement, amounting in this case to an almost manic state and clung to by Machen as evidence of some genuine visionary gleam.

Perhaps the true Machen enthusiast needs to be a lover of lost causes. Lawrence Durrell remembers Gawsworth rising early to place flowers on the statue of Charles I, a moment as characteristic as meeting him wheeling a pram full of empty bottles to the off-licence. Gawsworth found some solace in being King Juan I of Redonda ñ the guano-covered rock in the West Indies, which had M. P. Shiel as its first monarch ñ and would bestow titles for the price of a drink. The present King, the Spanish novelist Javier Marias, has not only helped with the cost of Dobsonís edition of The Life of Arthur Machen but considerably improved the intellectual level of the Redondan peerage, ennobling A. S. Byatt, Pierre Bourdieu and John Ashbery among others. Roger Dobson was created Duke of Bridaespuela a few years ago, and he more than deserves it for his labours on this valuable publication.

COURTESY JOHN PATTERSON!

Images from the past 16,000 years…

U.S. Widens Its Protective Frame for Indian Rock Art

A ceremony at China Lake will mark the 36,000-acre expansion of the historical landmark.
By Fred Alvarez
Times Staff Writer

May 20, 2005

RIDGECREST, Calif. No matter how many times archeologist Russell Kaldenberg roams Renegade Canyon, its volcanic rock reveals new magic. Depending on the season or the slant of the sun, the dark stone will erupt with chalk-white images, carved over the past 16,000 years, that he hasn’t seen before.

There are bighorn sheep and long-tailed cougars scratched into the walls of the high desert corridor. There are snakes and dragonflies and mammoth-like creatures, captured in rock carvings by the native people who once hunted and gathered their food on the western edge of the Mojave Desert.

There are so many images, in fact, that they can’t all be counted. All anyone knows for sure is that the carvings, set deep within the Navy’s testing range at China Lake, make up the largest concentration of Indian rock art in North America. And that every visit yields new discoveries.

“The harder you look, the more you see,” said Kaldenberg, who as base archeologist is responsible for preserving dozens of canyons peppered with prehistoric art at Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake. “It’s magical to me, with the light and shade and angles of the sun. If the clouds move just right, you can almost see things move.”

Navy officials say they take seriously a promise made decades ago to preserve these fragile etchings, chipped into the rock of the Coso Mountain Range. While the primary mission of the base remains weapons development and testing, there has been growing interest in researching the Indian etchings, known as petroglyphs, and ensuring public access to a portion of the site.

A small section of the base was designated a national historic landmark in 1964, marking the only such designation on Department of Defense lands. And at a ceremony today, officials will add a 36,000-acre slice of the desert to that designation, increasing by 100 times the size of the area under protection.

The move is largely ceremonial. The Interior secretary approved the expanded boundary in 2001, and public access won’t increase.

Still, military officials are using the occasion to showcase the balance they have struck between their military mission and the management of cultural resources.

“One of the reasons things are as well-preserved as they are is because we’ve been here with essentially a secure land area where these cultural resources are not disturbed,” said Capt. Mark Storch, China Lake’s commanding officer. He said the Navy has had a long history of safeguarding cultural resources and said that at China Lake, military activity disturbs less than 5% of the base’s 1.1 million acres.

“We’re very proud of the fact that we’ve been able to conduct our military mission while maintaining the public trust to preserve these sites,” he said.

The public has been visiting the sites since before China Lake was established in 1943, and formal weekend tours have taken place since then through the base and the nearby Maturango Museum. Because visitors must drive through the heart of the weapons testing range, tours are restricted to weekends — and then only when no military activity is taking place.

The Navy provides tours year-round at no cost. The museum leads excursions in the spring and fall for $35 per person.

Today, about 3,000 visitors arrive each year to walk through Renegade Canyon, a 1.6-mile stretch of scrubland and lava flows that is the only area regularly open to the public. The area also is popular with China Lake’s 4,000 base personnel, about 3,100 of whom are civilians.

Richard Stewart, a member of the Big Pine Band of Owens Valley Paiute Indians, said he had no problem with the Navy limiting access beyond Renegade Canyon, arguing that the military’s presence had kept the etchings in good condition. Even with limited access, someone has carved the crude outline of a car on one boulder. Another rock bears the inscription E=MC2 and is thought to be the work of physicists at China Lake connected to the Manhattan Project.

“You don’t see off-road vehicle tracks or some of the other problems you have in other places,” said Stewart, who will sing a Native American creation song at today’s dedication. It’s like the images “have been put in a little time capsule.”

Indeed, the rock canvas at China Lake bears some of the oldest and newest Indian carvings in North America.

They are believed to have been made by tribes that settled the area, some of them ancestors of the modern-day Paiute and Shoshone Indians that populate the region today. The oldest petroglyphs are thought to date back to the end of the last Ice Age, a period that launched a rock art continuum that stretched to the late 1800s.

The story unfolds against slate-gray cliffs, swimming with strange and mysterious shapes.

Many of the rock panels depict hunting scenes, with stick figures clutching wooden shafts, chasing deer and bighorn sheep. Some stones are engraved with baskets and pelts, others with what could be medicine bags and baby cradles.

There were warriors on the property long before the Navy arrived, as evidenced by an etching that depicts two men squaring off, each armed with a bow and arrow. There are figures wearing headdresses and holding staffs, perhaps depicting shamans or medicine men. One theory holds that the rock art is connected to so-called hunting magic, created as part of a ritual to ensure a successful hunt.

“The thing about rock art is that you get into real trouble when it comes to interpretation,” said Kaldenberg, scrambling up boulders earlier this week to photograph images he had never seen. “All you can do is suggest what it might be, but no one knows for sure.”

For all its history, the volcanic canyons remain unknown to many, including those who live in surrounding communities such as Ridgecrest, Inyokern and Trona. So it was that Jessica Armstrong, a public affairs intern at the base, took her first tour last week, trailing Kaldenberg across the desert floor studded with beaver tail cactus and mariposa lilies.

Born and raised in Ridgecrest, the 28-year-old has been connected to the base all her life. Her mother and stepfather work there. And she is nearing the end of a one-year internship that taught her plenty about the base.

Now she knows something about the ancient people who also called this place home.

“You look out at this desert and you don’t think anyone was here before you,” she said. “To see this history set out before you is just amazing.”