May 2004

Clinton speech gives BookExpo giant kick start

Cabot writes “The U.S. book world’s annual national convention, BookExpo America, should mark the convergence of publishing, politics and star power.

Bill Clinton, former U.S. president and future best-selling memoirist, makes his first official stop on what his literary representative, attorney Robert Barnett, has billed “the mother and father of all roll outs.” Clinton’s memoir, My Life, is scheduled for release on June 22 with a first printing of 1.5 million. His keynote speech this Thursday at BookExpo is the convention’s biggest event in recent memory.

The Globe and Mail Has More

Damaged Books Reborn as Art

In 2001, the San Francisco Public Library began finding books that looked like they had gone through a Ronco Chop-O-Matic.
Almost 600 books were sliced, diced and nearly julienned by a vandal with a knife— then shoved back in the shelves.
All of the books destroyed had common threads: gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender issues, HIV, women’s health and multiracial families.
“He had an agenda,” said Mary Bennett, a former San Francisco resident who moved to Santa Fe three years ago. “I said ‘God, that’s awful. Let’s do something with that.’ ”
What she did has become Santa Fe’s Center for the Contemporary Arts’ latest show: “Insight Out.”
Bennett put in a request to the library for some of the damaged books. Her idea was to ask local artists to rework the books into art pieces.

Full Story.

Library Envy?

mdoneil writes “I was just wondering if other librarians have ‘library envy’ like I do. Do you go to other libraries to see what they have? I do. I have been to libraries in every city to which I have travelled except London. ( I arrived in London on 9/11/2002 @ 6:20AM !, no time to visit the library I had to make train reservations as all connecting flights were stopped).

I have seen libraries in Dublin, ( I did some undergrad work @ Trinity – the Jedi archives ) and many other Irish cities, Madrid, Mexico D.F. and many other Mexican cities, Paris, Iran, Portugal, Belgium, the Vatican, and a bunch of libraries in the States.

Do other people do this too. I hope so. I have decided to use my free time to organize library tours. I think of a reciprocal borrowing type of thing. Librarians from other countries can come to the States to see how we do things, and we can go to other countries to see what they do.

Insofar as I have a few contacts I think I might be able to get the ball rolling. I have some friends at a tour agency in Ireland, and I have some relatives in the religious biz who may have a wee bit of pull at the Vatican libraries. I think a couple of trips to Europe can be arranged.

Bearing in mind that librarians are poor, how does this idea sound?

Would anyone here go on a trip? I am thinking 2K inclusive (air and hotel and a few meals) from an Eastcoast gateway (NYC, ATL, MIA). Other trips such as Iran would of course cost more but they are really interesting. Iranian libraries were fantastic and the librarians really open and helpful.

Let me know your feelings.”

AlterNet: Patriot Act Besieged

Fang-Face writes Two! — count them: two! — contentious issues wrapped up in one neat package. A person whom some of us love to hate,
Nat Hentoff, has a commentary on the USAPA movement, focusing primarily on the swing from “support” to “opposition”. There is also some mention about the secrecy inherent in USAPA, and about how it often it is being used according to an Associated Press article. If you hate Hentoff, the indy media (, or are simply fed up with hearing about USAPA, find something else to read.

Librarians are the Heroes in The Day After Tomorrow!

Ryan Schultz sends along another piece about librarians being about the only saving grace of the new disastrous disaster flick “The Day after Tomorrow.”

Finally, a Hollywood movie where librarians are portrayed the heroes they really are….

“I’m of a fearsome mind to throw my arms around every living librarian who crosses my path, on behalf of the souls they never knew they saved.” —Barbara Kingsolver”

Man Pleads Guilty to Attempted Rape at Philadelphia Library

Fang-Face writes A very brief follow up to a story that was posted here at LISNews a number of weeks ago.
The homeless man who was accused of attacking an 8 year old pleaded guilty. He could be facing anywhere from five to fifty to one hundred years. His lawyer says the dude is sick. I say: “Well, since it isn’t his first offense lock him up and keep him off the streets for the next hundred years, then.”

Newspaper editorial on Bush and National Archives

Info Whale writes “Bush may have ulterior motives for his candidate
to become director of the National Archives – largest circulation newspaper in West Virginia posts
an editorial.

Here the possibilities they list from Bruce Craig, executive director of the National Coalition for History:
# January 2005 will make 12 years since the elder President Bush left office. After 12 years, some presidential records can be opened to the public. The nation’s archivist is in charge of that process. It’s possible that Bush’s son may not be in office next year.
# Also, records of the Sept. 11 Commission are scheduled to be transferred to the National Archives after the commission finishes its work and disbands later this year. Again, the archivist controls the speed at which those records see daylight.