Shakir Baloch is one of hundreds of folks who are being detained by the US without charges. The Canadian government has complained, but the US hasn't responded yet. I heard reports on CBC radio this evening that he was being held in a maximum security prison in unbearable conditions. According to his lawyer, who has only been able to visit him once, he is constantly under bright lights, and made to wear an orange suit. update: here's a report that mentions the maximum security prison.
Apple sure is revving up the hype on whatever it is they're going to announce. Flat screen iMac is what folks are saying, but maybe it's truly revolutionary... though as long as Apple is responsible to its shareholders, I kind of doubt it. update: here's some speculation.
Speaking of hype, I'm having a lot of trouble feeling any kind of excitement for Episode II after the total shite that was Episode I. When I first saw "The Phantom Menace", I thought maybe it was impossible for it to live up to expectations, and I was too hard on it. I saw it again recently (don't ask), and it turns out I was fooling myself to think that it ever had more than any passing redeeming qualities. Anyway, the Lucas marketing machine is treating this one like people are still excited about seeing another way to ruin the original series (the digital "enhancements" in the rereleased trilogy are totally gratuitous and distracting). People probably are, but I'm annoyed, because I'm not. (Do I need to mention that all the people that are excited about it have no taste or artistic sense, and that I know this because I, by virtue of pure arrogance, have direct access to the objective aesthetic? I thought not.)