Thursday, May 31, 2012

But, then again, sometimes I am just so fuckin' Mel Torme!

I Walked With Governor Scott, Last Night....

All in the same week in the same state....Zombie Apocalypse Florida Style?
Soundtrack: I Walked With A Zombie by the still miraculously living legend,
Rocky Erikson

5/16: McArthur High School HazMat Situation
Students, Teachers Decontaminated After Breaking Out In Rash
5/19: No confirmation on chemical at Fort Lauderdale International Airport

5/21: Police: Man bites woman in Westchester

5/23: I-285 reopens after hazmat incident

5/23: Man Bites Cousin’s Nose Off

5/24: Second Broward school reports mystery rash

5/25: Hazmat Called After Kids Exposed To Pesticide On Bus: Hazmat, EMS Respond To Lake County, FL School

5/25: ‘Disoriented’ passenger subdued on flight in Miami

5/26: Naked Man Allegedly Eating Victim’s Face Shot And Killed By Miami Police

5/26: Florida Doctor Spits Blood at Highway Patrolmen After DUI Arrest

And now, ugly rumors are surfacing that Florida Governor,
 Rick Scott is actually a Zombie! 
“Le Roi du maquillage” - Georges Méliès (1904)

My Feets Too Big

Fats Waller around 1939...
Story of my life!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Inside Job

One of the most dangerous films I have seen in a long time. It is dangerous because it explains coherently the way the world banking crisis evolved. It interviews most of the major players and lets them incriminate themselves with their own words.
'Inside Job' provides a comprehensive analysis of the global financial crisis of 2008, which at a cost over $20 trillion, caused millions of people to lose their jobs and homes in the worst recession since the Great Depression, and nearly resulted in a global financial collapse. Through exhaustive research and extensive interviews with key financial insiders, politicians, journalists, and academics, the film traces the rise of a rogue industry which has corrupted politics, regulation, and academia. It was made on location in the United States, Iceland, England, France, Singapore, and China.

the general idea

I worked for quite a few years as a neon installation technician...not that I really knew what I was doing...but I worked with Rudi Stern's,  Let There Be Neon Gallery on West Broadway in Soho, Manhattan, NYC. I became a member of the 15,000 volt had to be a survivor to be a member. I probably bought, transported and installed the last lots of Uranium Glass available (not necessarily) legally in the USA. Uranium glass was a unique material which created a range of florescent green tints that have disappeared today. Like the legendary Cadmium pigments of classical oil painting. We now are protected from the brutal beauty of these potentially harmful substances. Like smelling tobacco in a the florescent display on a pre 1960 wristwatch.... reduced to evocative memories of a sensation
The two tubes here create spectacular effects of electricity in a near vacuum. These are a recreation of Geisslers original display of his technical discoveries. He invented neon lighting. Geissler not only managed to evacuate and seal off the tubes without contamination, but made use of the coloured effects of different gases, flourescent liquids and uranium glass. Unfortunately the originals are slightly radioactive because of the uranium glass so cannot be displayed.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

God Save The Queen

This song was released on May 27, 1977 on Queen Fucking Elizabeths Silver Anniversary. It was the #1  selling single in Britain, but the music industry was so freaked out that they suppressed it. So The Sex Pistols hired a boat on the date of the Jubillee, June 7, 1977 and cruised up the Thames playing this song live. The police boarded the boat and arrested everyone. 35 years late and it's the same fucking Queens 60th Anniversary and England is still dreaming and there still is no future!
But the song is better than ever and has just been reissued as a classy 7'" picture disc.

The TSA’s SPOT program, which trains agents to identify terrorists by reading faces and body language, costs taxpayers more than $1 billion and hasn’t helped nab, well, anyone.
But the record of these behavior-detection officers is disappointing, to say the least: not a single terrorist nabbed. In fact, 16 passengers allegedly tied to terror plots passed 23 times through airports — and not one was picked out of the crowd. 

And a federal watchdog agency, the Government Accountability Office, is warning that SPOT’s miserable record probably won’t get any better, at least any time soon. Frankly, I fly a few times a year and I have perfected travel zen attitude. I become no one, I am somewhere else. I smile pleasantly. It's breathing and meditation. It works. Perhaps, I could market the technique.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Bang A Drum!

Each night in Montréal, and now in other cities and towns in Québec, the locals are treated to the loud din of thousands of protesters taking to the streets. The video above is from last night, and was relatively peaceful with only a handful of arrests but so far a staggering 2500 have been arrested in the standoff over student tuition and now draconian law enforcement. The Pots Protest ("Manif de casseroles") began earlier this month in response to the Student protests, which are now over 100 days old, see no sign of abating any time soon, and in fact are only growing in numbers -- and volume. The protests started with the planned 80% tuition hikes by Quebec Universities proposed by the Conservative Quebec Government led by Premier Jean Charest. In response to the initial protests, The Quebec government adopted the draconian "emergency law" #78, which gives the government unlimited powers to suppress any form of protest.
Traditionally, Quebec because of it's rural economy and ancient French Catholic heritage had the  fewest Universities and college student population per capita of all the Canadian Provinces. It's only been in the last 25 years that the student population has begun to catch up with the rest of Canada. The rate increases will make the dream of college out of the question for another generation of Quebecois. The Conservative government criticized the students as abusing a privilege and used the code word "entitlements" to try to paint the protests as the irresponsible actions of an over privileged population.
What started as a protest which mainly involved students, who are directly affected by the tuition increases, now has grown to include Quebecois of all varieties. The governments hard line refusal to tolerate protest or even engage in negotiations with students is now threatening Quebecs tourist season.

“The government made a big mistake adopting Law 78… we have gone from a debate about university financing to a debate about fundamental rights,”  stated Jocelyn Maclure, professor of political philosophy at Laval University in Quebec City.
The law has been condemned by Amnesty International. This illustrates the basic differences between the way democracies operate in different systems. A Parliamentary system, like France or Canada has more direct power concentrated at the top. When a government changes, policies can change very swiftly as opposed to the American system. The election of the Socialistes in France is swiftly effecting a shift from oppressive right wing nationalism to a more liberal attitude. Conversely, we have always thought of Canada as being our nice neighbor of the North...But 5 years of Conservative politics have created a repressive environment on the verge of enacting some of the most draconian internet censorship laws on the planet. But, then things change. The Canadians are beginning to react to their economically manipulated shift to the right. It will be interesting to see the results of the next wave of elections in Canada.

 Here's another great recent video ofMontrealers engaged in charivari, a form of protest involving beating pots and pans in the streets.  This form of protest was widely used in Chile after Pinochet banned public protest. The Guardian's Adam Gabbatt writes from Montreal:
"I'm very surprised at what's happened," said Kevin Audet-Vallee, a 24-year-old history student who had attended tuition fees protests before bill 78 was introduced.
"Now that the ordinary citizens are in the streets I think the government is really in trouble, because the middle class is in the streets. At first [critics of student protesters] were saying we were radicals. These are not radicals."
Indeed, at the pot banging near the Jarry subway on Friday night the age range of the crowd was strikingly diverse. Sensibly dressed fortysomethings wearing hiking boots and kagools intermingled with long-haired students wearing only shorts. Men and women pushing young children in prams were flanked by hipsters on fixed-gear bikes.
The range of protesters was matched by the diversity of utensils they chose to create noise. Some had reached past the saucepan and wooden spoon, with the Guardian spying such unlikely pairings as a colander and a drumstick, a pan lid and a pair of chopsticks, and a barbecue lid and a pair of tongs all being put to alternative use.
As the protesters marched for more than four hours through various Montreal neighbourhoods, many people had taken to their balconies in support, bringing their own kitchenware and adding to the din.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

remember, at least 30 minutes of aerobic workout everyday!


1954 Kaiser-Darrin
Made in Toledo, Ohio. Only 435 of these dream machines were ever built and most are still
around today. A futuristic fiberglass body, 90 hp, 161 cube three speed on the floor transmission.
Top speed of over 100 mph with a 25 mpg fuel consumption. More like a T Bird than a Corvette.
This is a boulevard cruiser, not a true sports car. Another great reason that illustrates why 1954
might have very well been the apex of American car design. It's all been downhill from there.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Frankly, I'm Not That Nasty.....

Sometimes you read something that really pisses you off, so much that you have to walk away and think about it. Did I understand the implications, the I over reacting? Well, uhh, no...I don't lose my temper easily, but I think I've really lost it here.
Some personal background: I have been afflicted with the curse of asthma for over 55 years. To the point where I have ended up in emergency rooms as a teen. I've tried to deal with it as best as I could, perhaps in some way it has inspired me to constantly go beyond my fears, to push myself. It is what has made me a 62 year old long distance biker. I have to admit, that it wasn't until I started living here in France and dealing with the French medical system that I felt it was actually under control. For me, it's pretty easy...a daily dose of cortisone and the use of salbutamol inhaler when I need it. I have another prescription, an inhalable powder called formoterol which I use occasionally. I dealt with some very bad doctors in the USA and the medicine I used had some very nasty side effects. It was very expensive. Here in France, I spend about 120 Euros a year out of pocket, but through my Mutual program, almost all of it is reimbursed. My doctor tells me that I am much better than when he started treating me and I know he is right, because I simply am. I run, I swim, I am a long distance biker and in pretty good shape these days.
For you information, the salbutamol inhaler is a lot less dangerous than the old style ephedrine inhalers sold ovder the counter in the USA. The ephedrine inhalers caused had many side effects and abuse could cause heart problems. Salbutamol is used regularly by asthmatic athletes as a precompetition treatment. You cannot "get high" from a Salbutamol inhaler, but in most cases it will give immediate relief from a severe attack.
But, as I said at the beginning of this piece, I have experienced severe life threatening asthma attacks in the past. I know what it is like to be practically unconscious, semi coherent, unable to breathe.
So I read this story today, about an incident that occurred in a Deltona, Florida Public High School on Monday. A 17 year old kid, Michael Rudi had a severe asthma attack in school. He asked to go to the school nurse because his prescrption Salbutomol inhaler had been consficated from his locker in a security search a few days earlier. The inhaler was in it's original packaging, with his name on the prescription. It was given to the nurse for safe keeping. He was supposed to have his parents sign a form that allowed him to use it in the school. He hadn't returned the form yet.
So Michael goes to the nurse as his attack gets worse. The nurse refuses to let him have the inhaler. He begs and begins to collapse. The nurse, who is being protected by the Deltona School Authorities, closes and locks the door of her office and watches him from behind a window. What did the school authorities do? Did they even call 911 so trained professionals could deal with a real medical emergency? No. They called Michaels mother, who drove to the school and found her son collapsed, semi conscious on the floor of the school hallway outside the nurses office.
Michael stated later that he felt he was dying. The school had his medical records and knew of his condition. Mrs' Rudi said that she tried to press child endangerment charges with the police, but the school is trying to stonewall it because of the lack of the signed form. But, the bottom line, the kid could have died and they didn't even call 911. I believe that the so called nurse betrayed the trust to carry out even the most basic resposiblities of her purported role. I believe that if Michael Rudi wasn't Hispanic in the so called Rick Scott unreality George Zimmerman show state of Florida and had gone to a school in a wealthy neighborhood, this could have never happened. Right now, I have absolutely no sympathy for the so called nurse. I would like to see her lose her job and be prosecuted for her negligence for not calling medical authorities at the very least. Actually, I'd like to know if her professional equipement includes a taser, because you know, in Florida, this could have easily turned into a case of, "Well, yer honor, the perp started to behave in a erratically violent irrational manner and started to demand his drugs, so I just had to do away with understand..."
I could say that I wished the so called nurse could have the experience of knowing what a full blown asthma attack is like, but frankly, I'm not that nasty........

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The Mount St. Mary Concert

If you care to listen, this is a 1 hour plus recording of a concert of orchestral music presented by a 22 year old Frank Zappa at Mount St. Mary's College, Los Angeles in 1963. The music is totally unique, but the remarkable part is the question and answer period at the end, where Frank talks about his compostional techniques and influences. 
Sunday, May 19, 1963
8:30 p.m.
Little Theater
Mount St. Mary's College
I. Variables II for Orchestra
II. Variables I for Any Five Instruments
III. Opus 5, for Four Orchestras
IV. Rehearsalism
V. Three Pieces of Visual Music with Jazz Group
Question and Answer Period

Monday, May 21, 2012

The Culprit

Due to popular demand, my annoying little buddy, the Huppe...or Hoopoe...what ever he would like to be called is making his appearance here. For years, in the I would hear huppes making their repetitive, almost totally mechanical territorial chant...hoop, hoop, hoop....hoop, hoop, hoop...hoop, hoop. hoop...etc, etc...Occasionally, I would see a huppe...they like to hang out in the same place everyday. Usually a bright sunny location. They like to take dust baths. I'm told that their best defense, if cornered is projectile vomiting. They are the snazziest dressers. The flashy mohawk crest instantly unfurls when they show the least bit of emotion. They have the one of the coolest scientific names I have ever run across, Upupa epops. A very small family of birds that are comprised of 3 species that extend from Madagascar into Eurasia. This little guy is called in French, Le Huppe fasciee.  So, on Friday, I was in the house and heard what I thought was an electronic device beeping away in the attic. It was so regular, it sounded like someone's cell phone beeping....
I could not figure out what it was and went into the attic to see if there was something making the noise. The noise stopped. Later, it started again. Back up into the attic, then, I realized it was coming from outside...I raced out and saw a huppe on the chimney! Hoopin his little brains out...
After a an afternoon of patient stalking, with my wife's good camera, I got this photo...He was back again..Hoop, hoop, hoop....hoop, hoop, hoop...hoop, hoop, hoop...hoop, hoop, hoop...I think he likes it here...............

Sunday, May 20, 2012

A Future Lost

Actually, at the time, I officially hated disco music...but I was a closet Chic fan...and when the big gross commercial rock acts like, uhhh, Kiss made there tentative forays into disco, well there was some kind of a perverse thrill for me...Then I moved to NYC and started playing and writing rock music and seeing the interaction between club music and punk/no was a very licentiously fertile and incestuously miscegenatious musical atmosphere.  Anything could happen and it did. Perhaps the band that most successfully proved that all things were possible, aside from David Bowie, was Roxy Music. Roxy Music was so conceptually advanced that they could become all things....and you could always dance to the beat. Brian Eno, who left the band to blaze his own artistic path into the future said about the Donna Summer piece I posted here, I Feel Love, "When I heard this, I realized I heard the next 25 years of the future of Club Music". Eno was right, because what Giorgio Moroder created with Madame Summers here did change the face of Dance Music forever. This was the birth of Techno....Moroder was a genius....
But a lot has changed since Donna held the spotlight.

My attitude towards the entire Disco era, for one thing. My wife, who I will humbly admit is a lot smarter than I am, adored Donna Summer and Grace Jones. We worked together back then, We played in a rock band, then later worked together composing music for Dance performances and Plays. She was so much more eclectic in her tastes and influences. I was always always so Ramones and Clash and Gang of Four-but when I think about it now, there were some truly talented people back then. Songs, though they were teeth-grinding repetitive, were actually arranged well. The people playing the instruments knew what they were doing. This gradually filtered through my skull. I programmed drum machines, came up with bass hooks and guitar lines....I got slicker and slicker with out realizing what an influence my wife was exerting on my soft and porous skull....
But, then, Donna Summer could sing. There is no doubt about that. When I compare the pop of then to the favored performers of today, like superstar/white trash who deserves to be in a trailer park somewhere Katy Perry, there simply is no comparison.
But there were a lot of other things notable about that era that are gone from this world we live in now.
I knew people in the mid-1970s who actually managed to eke out a living on minimum wage. You weren’t going to get rich, or even comfortable, but you were going to survive. I know, I did as an independent artist living in New would be impossible now to do what I did.
I also saw less homeless people in that era; even the derelicts all lived somewhere. They didn’t always go home every night, but they all had that option. The cities were very different places then. Squattin was an option! That's how communities like SOHO were created....people could live outside of the system and then negotiate.....
Young people, like me, still had a lot of optimism that our lives would turn out all right. Sure, we’d seen the oil shocks, and the inflation, and the cyclical layoffs, but there was a general optimism that things would right themselves, because they always did. This was before Saint Ronnie appeared, and enacted tax and budgetary policies that did things like empty out the mental hospitals, and freeze the minimum wage until you couldn’t feed a cat on it. Sure, the rich got richer, but the poor got a hell of a lot poorer. The morons that try to re-enact the visage of Jimmy Carter as an unfavorable likeness for the present President either didn’t live in the 1970s and know nothing about it, or are in denial about how things really were then, or are idiots. Carter’s era was the last one in which the American working people held their own, except for a little spurt at the end of the Clinton era. And that was after Clinton’s tax policies took hold, too. Imagine that! But, I digress…
We were, in general, trying to find our way forward then. We were having discussions about race issues, instead of trying to demonize minorities (and make no mistake, “crossover” artists like Donna Summer did a LOT to get that conversation going.) We were trying to figure out how to clean up the air and the water, instead of trying to find new ways to undermine the environmental regulations that we put in place in that era. We were committed to making sure that people didn’t die from a lack of medical care, instead of cheering the suggestion that an uninsured man ought to just die. We’d have been appalled to find out that 1 in 6 of us went hungry at some point in time over the last year.
Yeah, we lost Donna, and that is most certainly a damn shame. Especially if she was right about contaminants from September 11 being the cause of her illness and I have personally lost a few very close friends from the same type of lung cancer she died from. All lived in the plume of contaminants that swept up Broadway after 9/11.
But losing Donna makes me think about all of the other things we’ve lost since she was the Queen of Disco.

And it’s all very sad.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Terry Gilliam 1970

Terry Gilliam 1970...The boy genius from Minnesota explains how it's done...
You can't get a good noise of arms being ripped off from a disk!

He's So Damn Rich....

He's so damn rich....Mitt just doesn't even have to try anymore. Hell, he and his investors have been paying for his inherent right to be president for what...8 years doesn't matter what you think, it doesn't matter what you want...Mittens is the fuckin president, okay? At a press conference in Florida today, Romney repeated that he “repudiated” the Wright attack. But when asked about his comments on Hannity’s show, Romney said he stood by them, even though he said he couldn’t remember them:

ROMNEY: I’m actually gonna — I’m not familiar precisely with exactly what I said, but I stand by what I said, whatever it was. I’ll go back and take a look at what was said there.

According to percentages, most Americans will not only not be rich, but will in fact go through their lives without even knowing anyone really rich. This explains why Mitt Romney can be a perplexing individual for average Americans to understand. You’d be thrilled if you found $250. He’s worth $250 million. There’s just no way to relate.
Luckily for Americans, we have all been exposed to literally hundreds of millionaires and billionaires via television and movies. While this may seem an odd way to learn about a candidate for President, the fact remains that most Americans are informed about this planet via fiction.
Thus, here are the Top-10 most intriguing and interesting TV and Movie Rich people, as well as the qualities they share with Willard Mitt Romney?
Bruce Wayne

A billionaire playboy, Wayne saw his parents get murdered when he was just a child. Inheriting his wealth, Wayne decided to become the world’s greatest crime fighter. Incredibly intelligent and handsome, Wayne has amazing courage. Despite never being able to adequately explain what the deal was with Robin, Wayne manages to have a strong public image and is well-regarded among all social classes. Also, he’s freaking Batman.
Romney Qualities: None. Not even a little bit.

Thurston Howell, III
Gilligan’s Island

Howell was only referenced as “The Millionaire” in the opening of the credits of the show, which was back in the days when “millionaire” was a pretty impressive thing. His elitism was unstoppable, to the point that he and his wife packed a ridiculous amount of clothing for what was supposed to be just a three-hour tour. Even on an island where money meant nothing, Howell lived life as he always had – as a superior being who was at the top of the social class. The rest of the castaways – apparently conditioned to treat the rich as their superiors – treat him as though his being rich in the real world matters. Howell once owned Denver. One of the bigger mysteries of the whole show was what he and his wife were doing on a crappy tour boat surrounded by plebes.
Romney Qualities: While far nicer and more likable than Romney, both share a complete lack of awareness to the world in general. Also, both graduated from Harvard.

Gordon Gekko
Wall Street

“Greed is good,” said Gekko in 1987 and the phrase immediately became the motto for the United States. For some reason, being a super-rich creep who screwed anyone to make more money became the model for true Americans. Because Gekko was super creepy. From dating models to owning ridiculous boats to just being a self-loving douchebag, Gekko was everything a human really wouldn’t want to be. Self-absorbed with a complete lack of empathy, Gekko was a waste of an incredible mind. Forget Ronald Reagan, Gordon Gekko is the father of modern conservatism.
Romney Qualities: Stir in some Mormonism and remove some intelligence and they’re roughly the same person.

Mr. Potter
It’s a Wonderful Life

Easily the most constipated man in the history of entertainment, Potter could only be more evil if he snacked on baby while destroying the dreams of average, hard-working types. Potter has two goals in life – Make all the money in the world and own the Bailey family’s crappy Building & Loan operation. He travels in a wheelchair only because hovercrafts had yet to be invented. He will gladly cheat to gain financial advantages. Just a really big asshole.
Romney Qualities: They may as well be the same person.

Lisbeth Salander
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

Worth more than $2.4 billion, Salander had an abusive childhood and bears the mental scars. Like Romney, she is hard to peg, but while Romney is a blank slate, she is a cornucopia of complexity. She is a pierced, tattoo’d, bisexual computer hacking genius that uses her power and resources for good. Don’t cross her. Like a modern-day, hyper-cool chick Batman, she will get her justice.
Romney Qualities: Mitt Romney has a tattoo of Milton Friedman on his ass.

Hannibal Lecter
Silence of the Lambs

Despite spending a good chunk of his adult life in prison, Lecter was obviously a shrewd investor and manipulator of markets. How rich was he? Who knows? But the guy lived large. A one-time psychiatrist, Lecter has a taste for the finer things in life, including human flesh. An incredibly intelligent man, Lecter manages to be charming despite the fact he’s one of the most heinous killers ever put to film. Remember this dirty little secret? In the book version, he and agent Clarice Starling become lovers and live together in Argentina.
Romney Qualities: Romney once ate a census taker’s liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti. I shit you not.

Tony Stark

Like many on this list and Romney himself, Stark had to step out of his father’s shadow. Once a carefree billionaire making weapons to destroy America’s enemies real and perceived, Stark found the light, invented an awesome suit, and became one of the world’s great crime fighters. A true genius, Stark is equally adept at charming ladies as he is inventing things that have no business being invented.
Romney Qualities: If Romney had access to the Iron Man suit, this planet would be a charred ember right about now.

Scrooge McDuck

In keeping with their modern tradition of making everyone annoyingly lovable, Disney has tamed McDuck over the years, making him more of a good all-around person. But the fact is, at the height of his powers, McDuck had more money than anyone on the planet and was a miserly jerk. McDuck once used hired thgugs to destroy an African village in order to reap its rubber. He owned a private zoo that included the world’s last unicorn. He was a ruthless, money-making machine. Also, he was a duck.
Romney Qualities: Mitt Romney is not a duck.


The owner of MomCorp, Mom is the richest person in the future, by far. Weilding un-Godly power, Mom makes it her business to get into everyone`s business in order to profit and to torment her former lover Professor Herbert Farnsworth. Commits almost constant acts of abuse on her adult children, and very possibly straps them to the roof of her car during long trips. Tries to maintain a solid public image despite only caring about herself. Her hair hasn’t moved in centuries.
Romney Qualities: These two share so much in common, it has been speculated that Romney has probably also had a stormy affair with Farnsworth.

Ty Webb

The son of a wealthy man, Webb leads a free-spirited hedonistic life spent mostly at a country club his father co-founded. A genius golfer who doesn’t bother keeping score, Webb shows an ease around non-club members that belies his wealth. he takes young caddie Danny under his wing, helping the young golf phenom reach new heights. He even takes time to talk with greenskeeper Carl Spackler, even though Spackler is obviously insane and possibly even dangerous. Webb openly detests the rich people that frequent the country club, and is generally disinterested in his own wealth, leaving large uncashed checks laying around his apartment.
Romney Qualities: Ok, these two share nothing in common aside from the fact that reportedly in real life, both Chevy Chase and Mitt Romney are notable dicks.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Django Reinhardt J'attendrai Swing

The 59th anniversary of Django Reinhardt's death. Yes, he only had two good fingers on his fretting hand.
His other two were damaged in a fire when he was a young man. Stephan Grapelli was active until
the 1980s! Gypsy Swing!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Europe Fast Forward

Fast forwarding from ca 1000 AD until 2003 showing Europe's shifting borders, alliances, unions, territories, occupied land etc.

Ah Kin Doo Thet....

This was all over the place last week. I took a look at that sucker and thought, sheeit, if thet's all it takes to  get a bunch of geeks to start gawkin' and thinkin the way you want them to...
well,  I kin doo thet too.... In fact I kin be as stoopid as it takes and stoopider even still!

The Big Lawn Of History

Today, Francois Hollande became the 9th President of the 5th Republic of France. He succeeded Nicolas Sarkozy who has the distinction of being the most rapidly disposed of President of the 5th Republic. It was Sarkozy who imposed a 5 year term on the Presidency, it had been 7 years before him. Well, in one of the last official statements Sarkozy made as president in an interview, he rather inelegantly stated..."Just wait, in a year, the French people will miss me." 
Well we've placed him in a forgotten corner on the big lawn of history. Hopefully, for his sake, when we finally get around to mowing that lost corner of the lawn, we will miss the little dwarf.......

More Joy Of Conservatism Even

"Grand Old Party" is a data visualization project. It is also a set of butt plugs.
Download Catalogue w/ detailed specs.
Each shape is determined by voter approval ratings amongst registered republican voters for each of the GOP presidential candidates. The height is a measurement of time, beginning December 10, 2011 and ending on April 1, 2012 (bottom to top). The width of each object is the quantity by percentage (out of 100%) of approval for that candidate. All data comes directly from Gallup polls.
Single piece: $65 ($45 for Perry or Bachman)
Entire set: $350 (with optional case for additional $40)
email : ( for more info or to place an order. All orders come with accompanying diagram as seen in slideshow (8x10).

Monday, May 14, 2012

Good Morning, Mumbai!

A student diploma film directed by Rajesh Thakare and Troy Vasanth from the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad.
Thanks to my nephew, Tom in Bangkok for sending me this lincredible
animated film!

Sacre Melenchon

Francois Hollande will officially become President of France tomorrow. It is a big deal and has already caused shock waves that are being felt through out Europe. Even in the week before the transfer of power, the atmosphere here in France has changed.
But, though it is the crucial move of the game, it could be lost if the sense of change doesn't carry through into the June legislative elections. The Socialistes control the Senate, but the Senate is not where laws originate. Most of the representatives in the legislature are up for re election. The UMP has the majority now. The feeling is that the majority is in big trouble and there is a very good chance for the Socialistes and a coalition of the left to gain control in the legislature and on a local level.
In regarding the election of Hollande, you have to look at the particular chemistry of the votes. Western France and most of the big cities went strongly for Hollande. The support of Sarkozy was mainly in the more reactionary east. North Eastern France, the region around Calais is one of the strongest sources of support for the Far Right Nationalists, It is the power base of Le Front National. A crucial factor in the election was the amount of support that Sarkozy thought he could get from the Far Right. 
At the beginning of Sarkozy's 5 year administration, Le Front National was discredited and bankrupt. The old attack dog leader, Jean-Marie LePen had alienated most of France with his repeated outrageous racist denials of the Holocaust. The party had already become fractured and had a history of scandals that destroyed it from the inside, where ever they actually had gained office. They had to sell their main headquarters.
This changed rapidly as Sarkozy tried to pick up the pieces for his own political gain. He catered to and courted the Far Right as the power base that would ensure his re election and transformed the UMP into an increasingly Far Right Racist Nationalist Party. Of course, this only had the opposite effect. While he did take France radically to the Right and used the opportunity to try to destroy the unions, coop the justice system and protect the wealthy, he created a corrupt monster. The UMP became more like the Republican Party in America. The rhetoric they used daily only empowered and unleashed the racist demons lurking in the French Psyche. In effect, they recreated the Front National. The Front National had a new leader. The daughter of Jean-Marie LePen, Marine LePen. Marine is a lawyer and she learned how to speak the language of discontent and is a skilled populist orator. She has attempted to soften the image of the Front National, cloaking the old xenophobic manipulation in a veil of vague social reform and promises. If you read the actual social platform of the Front National, you might think, except for the religious and racist and anti homosexual crap, that they were left of the American Democrats. But that what fascism does best. Dissemble and make vague promises while manipulating the basist urges of the confused and economically dispossessed masses. The power base of the FN is the NorthEast. The equivalent of the Rust Belt...the highest unemployment in France. They blame the unemployment on the influx of immigrants from Eastern Europe and their oldest demon, Islamic North Africans.
So, Sarkozy counted on the votes of the FN members for his re election. He assumed that they would vote for him against Hollande. What he didn't count on was the true hatred of the FN for Sarkozy and in empowering them he gave them their shot at seizing power. In the crucial last week of the election, on May 1st, Marine LePen urged her followers at their Jeanne d'Arc rally in Paris to either abstain or vote blanc. Later in the week, she actually came very close to endorsing Hollande, saying he was the less of the two evils.
In the first tour of the Presidential Election, much was made of the strong showing of the Front National. The sensationalistic media touted it as the rise of the extreme right. They garnered 18% of the votes putting LePen in third place. At the same time, another phenomena was occurring. The polar opposite party, Le Front Gauche was galvanizing the same disaffected masses as LePen. Jean-Luc Melenchon, the leader of the Front Gauche and their presidential candidate is a Communist. He had been a Socialiste and actually had been Minister of Transportation in Mitterands government. He is actually an old friend and adversary of Francois Hollande. Le Front Gauche is the champion of the Unions. He is an extremely charismatic, witty character as well as a brilliant, fiery orator. As LePen rose in the polling, so did he. At times during the race, he was doing better than her. Until the last days of the First Tour, they were neck and neck. He held rallies all over France drawing crowds estimated between 20,000 and over 100,000 in April at the Bastille in Paris. There was a great series of debates and in depth interviews of the candidates on French Television...a prime time show that lasted 3 hours.
One night it was LePen and I said 2 polar opposites addressing the same issues. They were supposed to debate, but LePen petulantly refused to debate. It was probably one of the biggest PR gaffes of her campaign. She said to Melenchon, "I'm not going to debate you. You treat me like I'm half crazy." Melenchon instantly shot back, "Well, I did leave you the best half!"
She pulled out a newspaper and started to read it on live TV as he tore into her for 20 non stop minutes.
Melenchon came in 4th after LePen. He told his supporters to vote for Hollande.
The show is not over, In the upcoming legislative election, Marine LePen is running for the seat in the Northern Calais Town of Henin-Beaumont. The FN is trying to maintain it's visibility and capitalize on its new populist image by trying to take as many seats as they can. Obviously, as leader of the party, Madame LePen's candidacy is a must win for it's credibility.
But surprise, guess who just announced his candidacy for the same seat? Jean-Luc Melenchon! The FN has been trying to establish itself in Northern france, but this is where the Unions were born, in the mines! This was traditionally the seat of Communist power for decades and has a very well organized party. Melenchon has a very good chance of winning and if he doesn't well, he will have provided france with some of the most entertaining political theater we have seen in decades! Sacre Melenchon!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Hundreds of pictures of Earth, each taken at about 6AM , showing the terminator - the day/night line - over the course of one year (2010sep-2011sep).
Taken by METEOSAT-9 Earth-observing satellite.

Time Is Tight

One of my true influences as a musician...I am a bass player...Donald "Duck" Dunn died yesterday in Tokyo. Playing with the great forever American Institution, Booker T and The MG's. Dunn always worked from the bottom up, my credo as a bassist. If you play bass, you are the distillation of the entire essence of musical and percussive energy. This piece, by Booker T and the MG's is such a perfect example of theory transformed into funky flesh! Thank you, Duck!

Friday, May 11, 2012


Why I loved Blondie...Their cover of Goldfinger from a 1977 German TV Show.
It inspired me to do a pretty drunk punk version in the early 80's.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

More Lies

Yes, it's the Honeybees, Ginger, MaryAnne and Lovey Howell, the wife of Thurston Howell III, dancing to the boss sounds of Liar, Liar by The Castaways, the groovy hit all the kids are groovin to...The big bad today type sorta hip sound of the new Romney Youth Movement!
I suppose all of us are, by now, used to politicians bending, twisting, spinning and throttling the truth.
Before our current president, there was
George W. Bush who looked at truth like a butcher examines a side of beef before knife hits the flesh. He seemed to think the truth needed a lot of trimming and only about half was fit for public consumption.
Bill Clinton looked right into the camera lens and told the American people "I did not have sex with that woman" without so much as blinking a watery blue eye. Later he fell back on his personal- or perhaps a sort of hillbilly- definition of sex. ("That's not sex. We were just a-playin and a-foolin'")
The lies of
George H. W. Bush are possibly some of the most shocking in American history but because he was so successful at covering most of them up we may never know the truth. His involvement in the Bay of Pigs, the Kennedy assassination, the naughty things he did with the CIA, and so many other exploits will require quite a monstrous backhoe to uncover them all.
Before that, Ronald Reagan told lies easily enough- about, for example, what he knew and what he did not know about shipping weapons to Iran- but then he was an actor and lying is part of the craft. The only time he got flustered was at press conferences when a grandfatherly smile and a witty retort just wasn't quite satisfactory.
Generally speaking, Americans are not so naive to expect their leaders to tell the absolute truth all the time. All in all, Jimmy Carter was probably the most honest of our recent presidents before Obama. However, when Carter bravely described the limits of American growth and materialism, the public found that truth was less preferable to the Reagan fantasy of a glorious American rebirth and a world ripe for conquest in the name of democracy. So, a wee too much truth cost Carter his re-election.
So it's rather hard to shock your average American when it comes to politician's fibbing. Sadly, we've grown all too accustomed to being lied to by our leaders.

Types of Lies
As one writer said, all lies are as corrosive as acid. They can "dissolve trust in a heartbeat." Yet not all lies are equal in the public mind.
Lying to avoid punishment or embarrassment, while it is definitely frowned upon, is at least understandable. People might have condemned Clinton for lying but facing that kind of public humiliation- (mostly of his own making) Clinton did what we expect. As former first lady and freelance sexologist, Barbara Bush remarked:
“Clinton lied. A man might forget where he parks or where he lives, but he never forgets oral sex, no matter how bad it is.”
(Everybody should be an authority on something I suppose. For Babs, it's bad oral sex.)
So, Clinton lied and most people understood his reasons, whether they approved or not. Again, there was Nixon who, in the Watergate scandal, lied about the cover-up and paid the price for it. But again, his motives were clear.
Much less understandable is another variety of lying. That is, lying for self- promotion or as a boast. That kind of lie is something that people seem much less likely to tolerate. I suppose it is because it is doubly insulting to the audience. Not only is he telling a needless lie designed at promoting his image, the liar is also implying that he believes his victims to be so stupid that they will swallow any tale he spins.

There's one other type of lie. It is the type that originates from a compulsive need. It goes beyond questions of morality and carries us into human psychology.
This is where Mitt Romney comes in.

Mitt's Memories
This year we have already seen some astounding manpulations of truth from the Republicans. The presumptive nominee, Mitt Romney, has gone way past this expectation of routine dishonesty and into a much darker realm.
On Meet the Press, Mitt Romney told his interviewer that he was with his father when they marched with Martin Luther King, Jr.
He had earlier told the same story in a speech at College Station, Texas.
However the story began to unravel when a reporter began asking for the specifics, as journalists are wont to do occasionally. Turns out, Romney's memory of the event was apparently of the false variety.
Romney had obviously lifted the story from a 1967 source which contained a chapter on his father. As it turned out, the original reference was incorrect and Martin Luther King never marched in the town of Grosse Point as described. Furthermore, the local historian believed that George Romney never appeared at a protest, march, or rally in Grosse Pointe.
Here's a more complete telling of the event and the non-event.
And that's not the first time, Romney has made up a fantasy about his childhood. He told Michigan voters about attending at the age of four Detroit's Golden Jubilee, celebrating the American automobile's 50th anniversary. One source reports it this way:
“My dad had a job being the grandmaster. They painted Woodward Ave. with gold paint,” Romney told a rapt Tea Party audience in the village of Milford Thursday night, reliving a moment of American industrial glory.
The Golden Jubilee described so vividly by Romney was indeed an epic moment in automotive lore. The parade included one of the last public appearances by an elderly Henry Ford.
And it took place June 1, 1946 — fully nine months before Romney was born.
Perhaps unfertilized eggs are people after all. This strange story at least gave the journalist an opportunity to flaunt his wit with this delicious remark:
The timelines suggest Romney could well have been conceived that day. But it is inconceivable he was actually there.
A Scary Question
What started out as "flip-flopping" - a polite euphemism- has become outright lying. But now, after witnessing what appears to be a pattern of being unable to tell the truth, is it time to question whether Mitt Romney might not have some kind of pathological condition?
While pathological lying is not formally considered a mental illness by psychologists, it is considered a symptom of other disorders. The Mayo Clinic categorizes pathological lying as belonging to the spectrum of behaviors known as Antisocial Personality Disorder.
Here's a description, brought to you by the helpful people at the American Psychiatric Association.
Individuals with Antisocial Personality Disorder frequently lack empathy and tend to be callous, cynical, and contemptuous of the feelings, rights, and sufferings of others. They may have an inflated and arrogant self-appraisal (e.g., feel that ordinary work is beneath them or lack a realistic concern about their current problems or their future) and may be excessively opinionated, self-assured, or cocky. They may display a glib, superficial charm and can be quite voluble and verbally facile (e.g., using technical terms or jargon that might impress someone who is unfamiliar with the topic). Not particularly convincing, in my opinion. Nearly every politician in the last 100 years could fit into that category.
Here's is a checklist to determine whether a person is your run-of-the-mill type of lying SOB or a mythomaniac.
• Excessive lying that is easy to verify as untrue.Check.
• Lies are told that bring no benefit and may be harmful to the liar.Well, that's debatable. If Romney lies enough and is not caught, he could very well become president. Harmful to the liar, yes, but only if our mainstream media journalists awake from their childlike slumbers.
• The behavior is repeated again and again with no regard for consequences.Check. But then that's also called the campaign trail.
• Pathological liars often can't seem to tell truth from lies and may contradict themselves when questioned. Hmm.. that's seems to be true in Romney's case too. What do you think? The Republican party's general policy of abandoning the truth whenever pressed too much makes it nearly impossible to spot the truly pathology cases.

One thing is for certain: Mitt Romney's unnecessary lies should be extremely worrisome to the upper echelons of the Republican Party. Why? They ought to be used to hearing lies.. lots and lots of them, you might be saying.But, as Southern writer Dorothy Allison wrote:
“Things come apart so easily when they have been held together with lies.”
The only question is whether the Mitt Romney mythology project will come apart before or afterNovember.

The Taiwanese Version

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Liar Liar

This post is dedicated to Mitt Romney, who wouldn't be caught dead on the campaign trail unless  without his special Mormon underwear with the magic fire retardant properties

The Liar

Deceiver, dissembler
Your trousers are alight
From what pole or gallows
Shall they dangle in the night?

When I asked of your career
Why did you have to kick my rear
With that stinking lie of thine
Proclaiming that you owned a mine?

When you asked to borrow my stallion
To visit a nearby-moored galleon
How could I ever know that you
Intended only to turn him into glue?

What red devil of mendacity
Grips your soul with such tenacity?
Will one you cruelly shower with lies
Put a pistol ball between your eyes?

What infernal serpent
Has lent you his forked tongue?
From what pit of foul deceit
Are all these whoppers sprung?

Deceiver, dissembler
Your trousers are alight
From what pole or gallows
Do they dangle in the night?

William Blake 1810

Mittens 2012

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

The Prison Industrial Complex...explained again!

I found this rant excellent, you might not like his style, but the passion, facts and logic are exceptional!
 The US has 5% of the world's population and 25% of the world's prisoners. Why is this happening? 
[Get more at]

Monday, May 07, 2012

Le Vie En Rose

Well the rose is the symbol of the Socialiste Partie. A simple ensemble playing the classic song in the style of a Bal de Musique, the apotheosis of Sarkozy's orgy of materialistic bling and legendary obscene party at Fouquets in Paris after his election in 2007. This was the scene last night in Tulle, France in the Correze where Francois Hollande delivered his first speech as the new President of France. Tulle is not a large town, but it is the home and center of Hollandes life. And, of course, Tulle is the accordion capitol of France! In spite of the vicious illegally funded and media controlled campaign of bile and misinformation waged by the UMP, Hollande managed to win. It was as if the windows were thrown opened and the stale noxious atmosphere of 5 years of Sarkozyism were dispersed in the fresh air. A government which was drifting more and more to the far right, using racism, nationalism, religion, fear and economic destabilization as political tools to establish a death grip on power is gone. We can start breathing freely again.
The real path to Hollandes victory was through the ballot box. The voter turn out in the election was the highest in recent history. 81% of the registered voters cast ballots. In France, the process is very open. We are encouraged to vote. If you cannot physically be present to vote, the process of appointing someone to legally vote for you is relatively simple. There are no voting machines to hack. In most cases, the ballots are dropped into a glass tank in full view. The counting process is open to all citizens to witness. That's how elections work. That's where power really lies in a true democracy. That's the most alarming problem with America today.
Voter apathy coupled with the actual disenfranchisement of large portions of the population are keeping many Americans from participating in their democracy, even if they wanted to. Thanks to a sluggish economy, and restrictive voter identification laws from Republican lawmakers,
voter registration is down for the first time in years. In particular, registration among African Americans and Latinos has taken a plunge:
Together, the number of registered blacks and Hispanics across the country declined by 2 million from 2008 to late 2010, when the Census Bureau collected the data through its Current Population Survey.
The figure among blacks is down 7 percent, to just over 16 million. Among whites, it dropped 6 percent to 104 million.

Among Latinos, the decline has altered a trend line of steady growth. Given that 12 million Latinos were registered to vote in 2008, some analysts had projected the number would grow to 13 million in 2010 and 14 million this election cycle. Instead, it fell in 2010 to 11 million.
I don't feel this means doom for President Obama’s reelection effort. The Obama campaign has spent millions of dollars on building field offices, registering voters, and navigating the new laws. My hunch is that, at the end of the day, these restrictions won’t have as much as affect as we think on the Obama campaign’s ability to mobilize minority voters.
Of course, the horse race is the least important aspect of this development; what should worry everyone is the degree to which the Republican Party has normalized the idea that there ought to be voter restrictions. Remember, voter fraud is virtually nonexistent; between 2002 and 2007, the Justice Department failed to prosecute a single person for impersonating another voter. But rather than confront the reality of voter security, proponents of voter ID push faulty analogies; we check ID for cigarettes and ‘R’-rated movies, why should we leave it at the door when for voting?
The easy (and correct) answer is that voting is a right of citizenship, and restrictions—even if they sound reasonable—do nothing but limit the voices that have input in our democracy. Indeed, as the Washington Post shows, the actual effect of voter ID laws is to make voting rights contingent on race and income. If you’re poor, a minority, or both, it is now harder for you to vote than if you were better off and white.
Americans love to call theirs the greatest democracy in the world, but as long as we actively work to disenfranchise our fellow citizens, there’s no way that we have a claim on “great,” much less good. You will never have a real working democracy that can effect change if you turn back the clock and make voting a right of race and class. When voting becomes a tactic of manipulation for those that assume they are the privileged class to sieze and hold onto power, the entire system is degraded and will inevitably collapse. Democracy is a system that must constantly renew itself if it will succeed!

Sunday, May 06, 2012

The First Official Congratualtion

General Aladeen is the first world leader to officially congratulate Francois Hollandaise on his
historic victory!

Actually, we are over joyed with Hollandes victory. This is the end of 5 years of destructive, divisive, and frankly fascistic policies. Also, the beginning of the prosecution of one of the most corrupt administrations in the history of modern France. Francois Holland spoke in Tulle an hour ago and I have tried to translate his remarks:
“The French have chosen change in me with the presidency of the Republic. I appreciate the honor done to me and the task before me.I pledge to serve my country with dedication and exemplary function required. I extend a hello Republican Nicolas Sarkozy, who deserves our respect.I express my gratitude to all those and all those who by their votes, have made the victory possible. Many have been waiting for this moment for many years. Other, younger, had never known. I am proud to have been able to restore hope.I imagine their excitement tonight, I share it, I feel. That emotion should be that of dignity, pride, responsibility. The change must be equal to France and it will start now.
To voters who have not given me their vote, they know that I respect their belief and that I will be president for all. Tonight there are no two faces of France but a nation united in the same fate.Everyone will be treated on equal rights and duties. No child of the Republic will be left out or discriminated against. And the promise of success will be honored for the completion of each. Too many fractures, wounds, ruptures have been allowed to separate us. We have reached the end.The first duty of the president is to reassemble and meet the challenges ahead. Recovery of our production to take our country out of crisis. Deficit reduction, preservation of the social model to protect the public service, equality of all our territories. Educational focus, the schools of the Republic, will be our commitment. The reorientation of Europe for employment growth, the future.
Today when the French elected me president of the République, I ask to be judged on justice and youth.I have confidence in France, I know it well. I traveled over France, witnessing the suffering, the difficulties of the people. I was able to measure all the assets, strengths, the chances of our country.I know we will recover, we have always done in our history and we will succeed again in the next five years.
Human dignity, equality between men and women, that is how I have accomplished my mission.The French dream is our history: progress. Give our children a better life than ours. It is this dream that I will try to accomplish with the mandate I was given.
I realize that Europe is watching us. When the result was declared, I’m sure it was a relief and a hope in many countries. It is the mission which now is mine and that’s what I say as soon as possible to my European partners.We are France and President of the Republic, I will come back to carry the aspirations of the people of France.May 6, must be a milestone for our country a fresh start for Europe and a new hope for the world.
I love my country, I love France and I want trust between us all.
I am a socialist, I always wanted the us to be to the left but we all are Republicans. (translation note: not in the American GOP sense…but as citizens of the republic)
Finally, I salute my department of Correze. I owe you everything, you have always given me your votes.Now I am in the service of France. I serve the Republic, France with the causes and values ​​I brought. Long live the Republic and long live France! “