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Old 07-09-2006, 12:33 AM   #1
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Bono: 1) House 2) Faith 3) Capitalism

Here you go. Use salt liberally with some of this:

1) Bono to take step down

Sunday July 9th 2006 The Irish Independent

BUILDERS and handymen should head down to Killiney en masse. And if you sell gates for a living, your boat may be about to come in.

U2 frontman Bono and his wife have applied for the removal of existing external steps to the side of Lios Beag, the miniature castle next door to their main house on the exclusive Vico Road.

The application also seeks to fix up "the construction of a conservatory, increasing the width of existing site entrance and replacing the existing gates with new gates to fit the extended entrance".

The property is bang in the middle of an architectural conservation area.

The U2 singer bought the neighbouring house about two years ago in a low-key off-market deal. Apparently, he bought the next-door neighbour's place so that he could be assured of a greater degree of privacy.

2) U2 a Christian rock band? Catholic priest sings praises of Irish group

By Emilie Lemmons
Catholic News Service (

ST. PAUL, Minn. – As a college student in the 1980s, Father Erich Rutten first associated the Irish rock band U2 with "great political rock."

U2'S BONO PERFORMS – U2's Bono performs to a sell-out crowd of 90,000 at Azteca Stadium in Mexico City in early February. Father Erich Rutten, associate pastor at the Cathedral of St. Paul in St. Paul, Minn. And a U2 fan, has come to believe the group was a Christian rock band, without its members calling it one. (CNS/Reuters)
Then he discovered one of the band's early albums from 1981, "October." Listening to songs such as "Gloria" and "Rejoice," with references to Jerusalem and the themes of death and resurrection, he realized that "virtually every song on the album is explicitly Christian," he said.

Interested in things spiritual, he started to learn more about U2 and pay attention to the lyrics – even in songs that seemed more like political songs or love ballads.

"They're a Christian rock band" without calling themselves one, he told The Catholic Spirit, newspaper of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. "They steered a very interesting course. They didn't go with the explicitly Christian band label. They developed their artistry – their music – in such a way that they did an excellent job of bringing in common, everyday symbols and stories to amplify the Christian message."

Father Rutten, who was ordained for the archdiocese last year and is an associate pastor at the Cathedral of St. Paul, is still a U2 fan, and he's become more well-known for it. At the invitation of the young adult series Theology on Tap, he developed a PowerPoint presentation last year on the Irish band to share at one of the local gatherings.

He pointed out that Bono was born in 1960 in Dublin, Ireland, to an Anglican mother and Catholic father. His real name is Paul Hewson and his nickname is short for Bono Vox, which means "good voice" in Latin. It also was the name of a hearing aid shop in Dublin.

Bono has said he grew up with a strong religious faith, mostly attending his mother's church, but did not become attached to one particular denomination.

"From his household, he was very sensitive to the ways in which people of faith hurt each other, just across denominational divides," Father Rutten said. In fact, in a song on the 1987 album "The Joshua Tree," Bono sings of a place "Where the Streets Have No Name." It's an image of heaven, free of tension and division, "not divided by what side of the street you live on," the priest said.

Father Rutten said band members have commented that whenever they play the song live, they "feel the power of God."

The priest said some might expect the band to rant against U.S. foreign policy and war, but instead it presents a Christian view of hope. The 2004 song "Vertigo" carries a sense of being off-balance, as if there's nothing firm to stand on, Father Rutten noted. "That's how they describe the modern world."

Later in the song, Bono sings: "Your love is teaching me how to kneel." It's the idea that "in the midst of the chaos or the confusion or the vertigo, you can find some stability through faith," Father Rutten said.

But U2 makes no pretense of having all the answers. The priest said the band's spirituality is one of questioning and attempts to be comfortable with mystery or apparent contradictions.

Some people see that questioning as a lack of faith. But Father Rutten sees it as a mature faith. "Even in the midst of questioning," he said, "there's that implicit trust and faith that the love of God is beneath it all."

3)U2’s Bono Backs Insidious Propaganda: Videogame With Venezuela Invasion Theme

Author: Venezuela Solidarity Network

WASHINGTON D.C. - U2’s Bono, well recognized for his campaigns to reduce poverty and treat AIDS in Africa is backing a videogame which promotes the invasion and destruction of Venezuela in order to check “a power hungry tyrant” who has “seized control of Venezuela and her oil supply.” Bono has failed to respond to concerns raised by the Venezuelan Solidarity Network about his funding of this project.

“Mercenaries 2: World in Flames,” created by Los Angeles based Pandemic/Bioware Studios, simulates a mercenary invasion of Venezuela in the year 2007. Pandemic is a subcontractor for the US Army and CIA funded Institute for Creative Technologies, which uses Hollywood techniques to mount war simulations in California’s high desert in order to conduct military training. “Mercenaries 2: World in Flames” simulates destruction in downtown Caracas, and promises to leave no part of Venezuela untouched.

Elevation Partners is an investment firm that Bono helped create in order to exploit marketing opportunities between U2 and its fans, including projects from Pandemic/Bioware Studios. Pandemic states that as a partner in Elevation Partners, Bono “has visibility into all projects at Pandemic and Bioware.”

Pandemic’s target market is young men of military recruitment age and indeed this is not Pandemic’s first military adventure. MSNBC reported that the videogame “’Full Spectrum Warrior’ was created through the Institute for Creative Technologies in Marina Del Rey, Calif., a $45 million endeavor formed by the Army five years ago to connect academics with local entertainment and video game industries. The institute subcontracted work to Los Angeles based Pandemic Studios.”

One cannot escape the irony that today, July 5, Venezuela celebrates its independence—just one day after the US celebrated its own. The most enduring aspect of an independent country is assertion of its sovereignty and demand that the world recognize international laws protecting that sovereignty. Yet, amid relentless US threats against Venezuela, a US-based company, Pandemic, which collaborates with the US Army to promote war, plans to market a videogame which advocates a most violent violation of Venezuela’ s sovereignty.

Although Bono remains silent on the matter and Pandemic insists that “Mercenaries 2: World in Flames” is “a work of fictional entertainment” and “Venezuela was chosen for the setting of Mercenaries 2 (because it) is a fascinating and colorful country full of wonderful architecture, geography and culture,” members of the Venezuela Solidarity Network are appalled by the game’s openly racist, interventionist attitude. Says Chuck Kaufman, of Alliance for Global Justice, “if it’s ‘just a game’ and it’s all about selecting fascinating and colorful locales, why didn’t Pandemic select Dublin or Washington, D.C.? Because people would be outraged, that’s why. Pandemic is simply capitalizing on negative and inaccurate U.S. press stories about Venezuela and its leader, Hugo Chavez, in order to make a quick buck. It’s another piece of anti-Venezuelan propaganda that serves only the U.S. military, pure and simple.”

Gunnar Gundersen of the Oregon Bolivarian Circle says, “We have family and friends in Venezuela and many of us have walked and stayed in the places featured in the war game. To us, these are not just clever abstract pictures. They are scenes of a place we consider our second home. Please try to imagine how Venezuelans must feel viewing a bulky, blonde, military man laying waste to their country, a country that is finally rising above a 500-year history of oppression and exploitation by foreign powers.”

The Venezuelan Solidarity Network calls for Bono, who has appealed to the world on many occasions for peace and poverty reduction, to apply those same values to block the manufacture and distribution of this videogame.

Bono: In the middle of various contradictions, as usual.

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Old 07-09-2006, 11:25 AM   #2
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Lots of changes at Chez Bono. Closing up those steps is probably a good thing for them, although not good for public beach access (if I'm thinking of the right stairs). A little sad about the gates, they were practically a tourist attraction in itself - I wonder if his new gates will be as unusual.

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Old 07-09-2006, 01:59 PM   #3
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The place next door, Lios Beag, means "little fairy mound" in Gaelic. I wonder if his kids play in it?
In looking at the satellite map ( - a wonderful tool!) I see what could be a castle-like house to the north of their house (straight up from their house on the map) - is that it?
There appears to be a pathway with a walkway under the train tracks to the south of their place (going down on the map), and it looks like there's a train station between their house and the beach. Is that what it is?
I wonder if he needs some renters in that castle? It would pay the taxes...
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Old 07-09-2006, 04:35 PM   #4
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If you mean the pale-coloured castle-like building higher up the hill from their house, then that is (was?) Enya's place, and it's not "miniature". I think it must some much smaller structure that is being referred to there.
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Old 07-09-2006, 05:11 PM   #5
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Thanks a lot for the articles Biff!!
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Old 07-09-2006, 05:21 PM   #6
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Originally posted by Rini
There appears to be a pathway with a walkway under the train tracks to the south of their place (going down on the map), and it looks like there's a train station between their house and the beach. Is that what it is?
I haven’t been there yet, but I saved some pictures that I found randomly, or by google search, from fans who have actually visited the place.

It is a beautiful place to live in, although they don’t have much privacy now that fans know where they live.

Thank you Biff.
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Old 07-09-2006, 05:32 PM   #7
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we already knew where they lived..especially B. I have been to his house...(well in front of those wonderful bronze gates) myself..
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Old 07-09-2006, 06:22 PM   #8
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with regards to that video game, ive seen worse.
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Old 07-09-2006, 08:12 PM   #9
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Here's a few pictures I took of the steps/path that leads on the side of the house that takes you from the street to the beach. This is from the beach, the house is on the right:

a random door on the side of the wall....

It's a long steep walk I took a video walking up from the beach all the way to the top of the street. It's over 2 minutes. I'd post it but it's sideways and you'll throw up watching from all of the movement. Plus I sound like Darth Vader at the end Also, I'm not sure how to upload it.
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Old 07-09-2006, 09:44 PM   #10
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Thanks for the articles and pictures. I love the "Christian Rock Band" article--I can vouch that the 10-10-01 show at Notre Dame felt like being in church: it was one of the most spiritual experiences I've ever had.
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Old 07-09-2006, 09:49 PM   #11
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Originally posted by arw9797
I took a video walking up from the beach all the way to the top of the street. It's over 2 minutes. I'd post it but it's sideways and you'll throw up watching from all of the movement. Plus I sound like Darth Vader at the end Also, I'm not sure how to upload it.
That pathway is beautiful! I wish there were places that pretty around here.
If you want to send the video to me, I can probably rotate it so it's not sideways for you and send it back. Then when I'm done, I can upload it for everyone else. My email address is purelysapphires13[AT] if you want to send the video to me.

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