Is MySpace the Teenage Parking Lot of Today?

myspace photo by dogface from flickrGone are the days of cruising the streets with friends and rendezvousing at midnight at the Dunkin’ Donuts parking lot to see what’s up.

55% of online teens use social networks and have created online profiles. Girls moreso than boys (70% of girls aged 15-17), according to the results of a Pew Internet & American Life Project poll released this week (summary | full report [.pdf]).

As today’s high school students grow up in an age where everything that pops is born and manifests online, the results of the study indicate a teenage culture where friends are made and maintained via MySpace (85%), Facebook (7%) and the like. But increased caution is being practiced (if it’s not forced by parents or the generally tasteless spam friend requests from MySpace) — nearly 60% of the 12-17-year-olds surveyed restrict the visibility of their profiles to friends only.

Also of note, no big discrepancies between teenaged social network users based on race or differences in household income. But only 17% admit to having ever used these sites for “flirting,” however that’s defined.

photo by dogseat via flickr.

Bush Took Katrina Blame Too; Still no Results

Worth noting on a night when many newspapers are leading with headlines such as “Bush Takes Blame For Iraq,” that 16 months ago this same president reluctantly accepted blame for the other major disaster of his disastrous presidency. “Bush takes blame for flaws in Katrina response” may have occurred two weeks — not nearly 4 years — after it became obvious that the federal gov’t was to blame for stepping on our freedoms and liberty irresponsibly, carelessly and not as democracy would have it. (And, no, I repeat, democracy does not require one to “seek out and destroy,” those who think differently).

For the record, it is severely underreported that New Orleans remains in shambles, very few people have been able to return and/or rebuild, primarily because money STILL hasn’t been properly doled out from the state and federal allotments and insurance coffers.

So don’t be surprised that when this soulless president once again “takes blame,” he already feels somehow absolved by his “cause.” Certainly don’t expect the lights to stay on in Baghdad any time soon.

UPDATE: For more on the still-disheveled state of affairs in New Orleans, listen to this excellent commentary by David Koen.

George Bush takes blame for Hurricane Katrina response, Sept 14 2005 George Bush takes blame for getting Iraq wrong, Jan 10 2007

Bush Announces new Same Old Strategy

In a 20-minute speech (see transcript) that was even worse than I imagined, Bush repeatedly lied, minced words, and sounded — in substance — as if he must have been hallucinating.

Basically, the president said that NOW, what didn’t work BEFORE WILL work, because “in the past we attacked and killed insurgents and then we’d move on and they would return.”

Probably the dumbest thing he said, though, was “the terrorists and insurgents are without conscience.” Is he saying that every non-Christian is a terrorist?

Of course, he proceeded to “encourage” Congress’ input, citing “good Congressmen” like Joe Lieberman — there was a series of statements that should have ended “and then laugh in your face,” i.e. “We will listen to your suggestions…..

Most disconnected was Bush’s continued oblivion to the fact that, the mere basics — regular electricity, etc, is still out of whack throughout Iraq.

Other notable lies, poor use of language, and hallucinatory allusions:

— An early mention of 9/11
— Numerous butcherings of “freedom” (in Iraq, to some extent “freedom” would imply freedom from American occupation).
— The misuse of the term “strategy”
— Somethign about Al Qaeda wanting to take over Anbar province
— stating that most Sunnis and Shiites just want to live together in “freedom.”
— one use of the word “nucular” — in reference to keeping Iran from going that way.

He keeps saying this is important to secure our liberty and freedom as Americans and, man, I just can’t even try to understand how anyone can be getting that. I feel damn free, and as long as we’ve still got some liberty let’s feel free to get out of the mess we made swiftly. The pure idiocy of nearly everything Bush said is just downright insulting. My thoughts go out to the troops and their families. This is bullshit.