September 2, 2004
Test Spin: Mouse on Mars
| September 2, 2004
Boards of Canada tell us that music has the right to children. Mouse on Mars isn’t part of that progeny; after all, they don’t suck; but Radial Connector is, as the title explains, part of a long tradition of you-know-who begot you-know-what. The sexcellent opening track “Mine is in Yours” ponders the continuous process of artistic procreation in cyclical structure through coitus metaphor and dangling ellipsis.
But this could all be a case of the blind leading the blind, or more accurately, the blind instructing the blind on the mathematics of Fourier transformations, while high on ecstasy: although the words come out abstractly incomprehensible and joyously incoherent, somehow our bodies still know what to do. Mouse on Mars’ Indian guru writes, “The impulse of DANCE is spontaneous” — but that may be because he’s chaste. Radial Connector gets the blood flowing, period.
“Evoke an Object” ironically concludes the record by self-referentially pondering its reason for being. What’s left? — “TO CHOOSE AN OBJECT.” Hah. Good joke right? Wrong. This record is all about geometries, but not your run-of-the-mill circles and squares. Radial Connector describes (and is described by) M
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September 3, 2004
Drawn by free tickets and political interest, a huge crowd packed every seat in the Straight’s cinema yesterday afternoon to see Robert Greenwald’s documentary Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch’s War on Journalism. The low-budget documentary, which portrays the Fox News Channel as a right wing propaganda machine, has become a sleeper hit, and yesterday the overflowing crowd at the Straight gave it an enthusiastic response. “It’s persuasive, it’s good, it’s well made, and a lot of people really don’t like Fox,” said Mitch Fagen ’05. the vice-president of Cornell College Democrats, explaining the appeal of the film. “This is an election year, so a lot of people are more interested in political films than usual,” he added. Outfoxed wasn’t originally intended to be distributed in theaters, but after more than 50,000 copies of the DVD were sold on Amazon.com and other internet sites within the first ten days of its release, the producers decided to release the movie in selected theaters around the country. The movie opened in New York, Los Angeles, Washington and San Francisco on August 6th and has been shown in many other cities since then. Still, Greenwald, the director, told Wired News, “theatrical release is the least important part to this film.” The film, which was substantially financed by two liberal groups, MoveOn.org and the Center for American Progress, cost only $300,000 to make, but according to Greenwald was never intended to make money. The movie makes heavy use of clips taken from Fox News broadcasts as well as interviews with reporters who worked for the network. Mike Lepage ’05, Chairman of the Cornell College Republicans, heavily criticized the film, calling it “misguided” and “hypocritical.” “FOX, in its choice of prime time hosts, may lean a bit to the right,” he wrote in an email, “But CNN, NBC, ABC, CBS and PBS all lean a bit to the left.” “Outfoxed” was shown at Cornell as part of an ongoing series called “Manufacturing Consent: The Press, Politics and the Powers that Be” sponsored by Cornell Cinema and The Sun. The series, which began September 1st with the sci-fi classic Fahrenheit 451 will continue throughout the rest of the month and into October. Upcoming films in the series include Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 9/11, Breaking the Silence: Truth and Lies in the War on Terror, which will be introduced by A.D. White Professor at Large John Pilger, and the summer blockbuster The Manchurian Candidate. Mary Fessenden, the director of Cornell Cinema, explained that Outfoxed was included in the series because, “this series is meant to address the links between media coverage, politicians, and the corporate world — Outfoxed seemed very appropriate to this theme.” Outfoxed, she said, was “providing a particular viewpoint and I’m sure that people will have different views, but it’s our job to get alternative viewpoints out there to be discussed and debated.” Fessenden acknowledged that the film series was heavy on films with a more liberal view, but said that, “I would say that in many cases the mainstream media coverage is more expressing conservative views and it’s the more liberal end of things that doesn’t get so much say through mainstream media outlets.” Fagen took a position similar to Fessenden’s. “Especially in the last few years, the media has been very conservative,” he said. The other networks may take one side of an issue on any given day, Fagen said. But unlike FOX, he added, “I don’t think they intend to be partisan for either side over a long period of time.” Lepage disputed the idea that the mainstream media was conservative. “With the existence of FOX News, talk radio, and online magazines and weblogs, the current media environment is much more diverse and [more] fair and balanced than twenty years ago,” he added. However, the arguments surrounding the movie did not dampen the enthusiasm of students who saw it yesterday. “It’s great that Cornell Cinema is doing all of this and showing movies like this,” said Isadora Yofie ’06, as she exited the theater. “This movie should be seen by as large an audience as possible,” she added.Archived article by Elijah Reichlin-MelnickSun Staff Writer
September 3, 2004
Cornell Dining and the College of Human Ecology celebrated Cornell’s newest dining facility yesterday by giving away free chocolate bars and T-shirts — not to mention a laptop, portable MP3 player and PDA from Dell. Martha’s opened in June and has been celebrating its inauguration since freshmen first stepped on campus Aug. 20. Colleen Wright-Riva, director of Cornell Dining’s dining and retail services, and Lisa Staiano-Coico, dean of the College of Human Ecology, briefly addressed students in Martha’s to welcome them to the new facility. “I hope Martha’s will become a home away from home when you’re in class and you don’t have a chance to go back to your apartments or your dorm rooms,” Staiano-Coico said. After Wright-Riva and Staiano-Coico’s welcoming speeches, Frank L. Carollo, director of marketing and communications with Campus Life, drew three tickets from a box to raffle off the Dell 1150 wireless notebook, Digital Jukebox MP3 player and Axim X30 PDA. Tickets for the drawing were available for free with every purchase at Martha’s since Aug 20. The Digital Jukebox and PDA were awarded to Prashant Kakad, grad and Lori Molinari, a staff member with the Entrepreneurship and Personal Enterprise program, respectively. None of the winners were present at the ceremony, but Carollo said that they would be reached with whatever contact information they provided on their tickets. Wright-Riva said that turnout at Martha’s has been good, and that although it gets “very busy” and the staff is still adjusting to the new flow of students, “we’re ready to serve.” Victor Younger, general manager of retail dining of Cornell Dining, estimated that Martha’s is expected to created about $550,000 in revenue this year, and so far, he said, it is on track toward that goal. June Feller, operations manager for the agriculture quad, said Martha’s currently serves about 600 customers a day. She aims for that number to grow to 800. To Younger, one of Martha’s biggest lures is that is provides members of the College of Human Ecology a place to eat without them having to leave the building, especially once the weather gets worse. Students eating lunch after the ceremony seemed to think that Martha’s food was up to Cornell’s usual quality. Lauren Allen ’08 said that the food was not anything special, but added that “the people who work here are really nice.” As for the ceremony itself, Allen said she “was disappointed in not winning anything, but the candy bar made up for it.” One of Martha’s features is Taco Salad Thursday, when the cafeteria serves a taco salad served in a taco shell bowl. Wright-Riva said had been a big hit at Martha’s previous location before it closed in 2001. Doug McLaren ’05 ate the taco salad yesterday and said it was “really good.” He said that although he usually eats at the Ivy Room, he has been to Martha’s regularly and plans to continue. “I’m definitely going to be here twice a week,” he said. Martha’s offers an a la carte menu of sandwiches, soups, a daily hot food selection, baked goods and espresso drinks. Located at the basement level of Martha Van Rensselaer Hall, it seats about 45 people and opens to a courtyard with two picnic tables and four benches. About 60 people were inside during the ceremony, and about another 20 sat outside, some at the picnic tables or on the benches, others taking advantage of the weather to lunch on the grass. The College of Human Ecology’s first eatery was The Green Room, which opened in 1913 and moved in 1934 to the college’s Office of Admission, Student and Career Development’s current location. It was renamed Martha’s in the early 1960s, but in 2001, some damage to the building’s structure forced it to close. Since then, Wright-Riva and Barry Brighton, assistant dean for administration of the College of Human Ecology, have been working on relocating it. Wright-Riva said that with its easy access and closeness to the courtyard, the current location is wonderful. “In my opinion, this has been an incredible transformation into what I would describe as prime basement real estate,” Wright-Riva joked, addressing her audience yesterday.Archived article by Yuval Shavit Sun Staff Writer