Sunday, October 31, 2010

Trick But No Treat

The Pennsylvania Attorney General has brought suit against the Unicredit Debt Resolution Center in Erie, PA. According to the suit, Unicredit dressed its employees in fake sheriff's deputies uniforms to lure creditors out of their homes with unenforceable orders and then took them to a fake courtroom where another employee pretending to be a judge told them they would go to jail if they didn't pay up.

A Pittsburgh ABC television station reported the incident and has a video which cannot be embedded, but you can see their report if you click here.
In the report, the investigative reporter asks Unicredit President Mike Covatto if he can see the  fake courtroom, which is complete with huge oak doors and brass knobs. Inside is a judges bench and a witness stand.
Covatto refuses to comment and tells the reporter to talk to his lawyer and "have a nice day".

I've seen the dishonest techniques and harassment that these guys try to get away with normally. They "buy" delinquent accounts from other collection agencies with the agreement that they will keep a portion of the money recovered from debtors.
These guys at Unicredit have taken it to a new low and it would appear that they have broken multiple laws that protect consumers and engaged in impersonating law officers. BOOK 'EM!

The Monster Mash

This is turning into a BrainPolice tradition and we love our little traditions, now don't we?. Ladies and Gentlemen, as part of our ongoing Halloween festivities,  I have the extremely distressing but highly esteemed honor of presenting for your particularly peculiar perception, The Bonzo Dog Band performing, for your rather perverse amusement,

Quote Of The Day/Oct.31, 2010

Never apologize for being human. 
Once you do, you’re no longer human – you’re a cyborg.

Stopping Time

I keep telling everyone that I am a solar powered being. I love summer. I love the heat. I love long days.
For me, the most depressing day of the year is the day we set the clocks back, today....Here in France, the Central European Time zone, we set our clocks back at 2:59 am.
Why do we change the time? The line is because we cling to an agrarian pre electric world, Supposedly, it gives the farmers more light to work, I guess. I think it is the evil influence of my nemesis, the cows....

Putting the clocks back in winter is bad for health, wastes energy and increases pollution,don't just take my word for it, this is what many scientists say, and putting an end to the practice in northern areas could bring major health and environmental benefits.
Countries across Europe, the United States, Canada and parts of the Middle East mark the start of winter by ending Daylight Saving Time (DST) and putting their clocks back by an hour -- often in late October or early November -- a move that means it is lighter by the time most people get up to start their day.
But this also robs afternoons of an hour of daylight, and some experts argue that in more northern regions, the energy needed to brighten this darkness, and the limits it puts on outdoor activities are harming our health and the environment.
Leaving clocks alone as winter approaches would allow an extra hour of daylight in the afternoon and could boost levels of vitamin D as well as encourage people to exercise more.
In some countries, such as Britain and Russia, politicians are being asked to consider parliamentary bills suggesting it's time for a change.
"It must be rare to find a means of vastly improving the health and well-being of nearly everyone in the population -- and at no cost," said Mayer Hillman of the Policy Studies Institute in Britain, where a bill on DST is coming up for consideration in parliament soon. "And here we have it."
Almost half of the world's population has lower than optimal levels of vitamin D, often called the sunshine vitamin. Vitamin D deficiency is a well-known risk factor for rickets and evidence suggests it may increase susceptibility to autoimmune diseases.
Switching to Central European Time -- to Greenwich Mean Time plus one hour (GMT+1) in the winter and GMT+2 in the summer -- would give most adults 300 extra hours of daylight a year.
Studies have shown that people feel happier, more energetic and have lower sickness rates in the longer, brighter days of summer, whereas moods and health decline during duller days of winter.
Dr. Robert Graham of Lenox Hill Hospital in New York said leaving clocks alone in winter should be considered to encourage people to get out more and get more exercise.
High rates of chronic illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease and obesity are caused in part by lack of exercise -- adults are advised to do 30 minutes moderate or vigorous activity a day, and children at least an hour.
"As a society we are always looking for accessible, low cost, little-to-no harm interventions," he said by telephone. "By not putting the clocks back and increasing the number of accessible daylight hours, we may have found the perfect one."
A study published earlier this year found that advancing clocks by an hour in the winter would lead to energy savings of at least 0.3 percent of daily demand in Britain.
Elizabeth Garnsey, one of the study's authors and an expert in innovative studies at Cambridge University, said this was equivalent to saving 450,000 metric tons of CO2 during winter alone.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Happy Halloween

Danny Elfman as the devil with his band, The Mystic Knights of Oingo Boingo performing a version of Cab Calloway's Minnie The Moocher. This was a sequence from the early 80's film, The Forbidden Zone...the plot is too bizarre and complex to describe here, but a film with Hebrew Wrestlers, Herve Villecheze, The Kipper Kids and Suzy Tyrell and of course, Danny Elfman and his band has to be at least...uhh, Interesting? Truly tacky and terrifically say the least!

And You Still Eat That Crap?

There's a good reason to avoid that revolting place.

A handfull pf McDonald's employees in Northeastern Ohio received handbills in their most recent paychecks  suggesting that they vote for three Republican candidates.

"If the right people are elected we will be able to continue with raises and benefits at or above our present levels," the insert said. "If others are elected we will not."

The fast food chains corporate headquarters in Oak Brook, Ill., distanced itself from the action by the Canton, Ohio franchisee Paul Seigfried, saying it was not reflective of the company's position. Secretary of State, Jennifer Brunner, the Democratic elections chief, said she was launching an investigation because the action appeared to blatantly violate Ohio election laws. 

Quote Of The Day/Oct.30, 2010

“I hate television. I hate it as much as peanuts. But I can’t stop eating peanuts.”
 Orson Welles 

Friday, October 29, 2010


Remember, the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.

Slow Down

I was gonna post a piece by Lyle Lovett, but I realized that one of the members of Lyle Lovett's Large Band, for quite a few years, has been Sweet Pea Atkinson, a man whom I firmly believe possesses one of the greatest set of vocal chords on the planet. This is a recent recording produced by Don Was. Sweet Pea has been recording with Was since the early 1980's. The harmonica player is David Was. The backing vocals are by members of Detroit's Black Bottom Collective and His Excellency, Sir Harry Bowen. Sweet Pea is one of the hardest working men in the business and the question is, why, oh why, doesn't Sweet Pea Atkinson have the fame he truly deserves?
And why is Don Was' 1997 Musical/Movie collaboration with Francis Ford Coppola,
Forever's A Long, Long Time so hard to find?
I have a copy, but I can't play the video because it is encoded for Mac OS9...
It was a very interesting piece starring Sweet Pea and Kris Kristofferson...
The music was a fusion of Herbie Hancock keyboards, Techno Rock and the songs of of Hank Williams. The surprise guest vocalist was Merle Haggard....

Paris Oct 28, 2010

In spite of all the spin, no matter how American media is reporting it, Sarkozy's "done deal" which was supposed to defuse the protests and strikes has only poured fuel on the fire...

Quote Of The Day/Oct.29, 2010

Nobody realizes that some people expend tremendous energy merely to be normal.
Albert Camus

Trick Or Treat

Why would this surprise anyone? At first I was going to stay above the oil slick of sleaze surrounding this little item, but today, as more and more of the details are becoming clearer in the Magic 8 Ball, I say what the hell! Let's indulge in a little smarmy gossip!
Last night a story broke in Gawker about an alleged drunken one night Halloween stand between Christine (let's just make masturbation illegal) O'Donnell and an unidentified fellow in Philadelphia 3 years ago.
The story was pretty bizarre, a knock on the door, two drunken party girls, one of which was Christine O'Donnell,  who were locked out of an apartment but wanted to borrow the bathroom to change into their Halloween get ups. 
The apartment owner let them in, and ended up going out with the girls dressed in his Boy Scout uniform, getting sloshed and then Christine asked if she could spend the night with him.
They get home, she takes off her clothes  the storyteller made a few remarks about Christine's hirsute genitalia, they get into bed, but nothing happens after Christine tells the guy that "she's a virgin".
The next morning, he gets up because he has to go to work early. Christine has a big hangover and won't get out of bed. He kicks her out....
A few weeks later, Christine is dating his room mate.
This seemed to be just some good gossip, but there were no names and just an anonymous guy in a boy scout uniform in the pictures. Let it have a life of it's own..
But, this morning, another website, The Smoking Gun, printed a collaborated version of the story by the room mate who names the story teller as Dustin Dominiak.
Why should we think this is interesting? Why not?
Did they have sex or didn't they? Who the fuck cares!
How can you tell a christian has had an orgasm?
Who the fuck cares......

Thursday, October 28, 2010


Haiti, wrecked by a massive earthquake in January, is now struggling with an epidemic of cholera that has spread through camps of earthquake refugees and into the nation's capital of Port-au-Prince. Dr. Jon LaPook, medical correspondent for CBS News, has probably done the best job I've seen of describing the horrific, disgusting toll this disease takes on the human body and on the societies it moves through.
I spoke to a middle-aged man, Robert Raphael, whose family lives between St. Marc and Gonaives. Over the past week he has lost a brother, niece, nephew, and "five or six" cousins to cholera. Five or six—he'd lost count.
They clearly need more doctors and nurses, but seemed to have enough oral rehydration solution and IV fluids for now. They obviously need specialized supplies like "cholera beds"—cots with holes cut in them for easier defecation. I asked an 8-year-old named Ritchie if it was hard to "faire toilette" in public (it's all out in the open), and he looked embarrassed and said, "Yes." That got to me.
The bug behind this devastation—the bacterium Vibrio cholerae—is a fascinating and frustrating creature. Fascinating, because of its role in the development of epidemiology and what we're still learning from it. Frustrating, because it ought to be relatively simple to treat and prevent infection. We know what to do to help a cholera victim survive. All it takes is access to clean water and the most basic medical supplies. The trouble here isn't science, it's poverty.
Cholera is, essentially, the worst food poisoning you can possibly imagine. In fact, it's related to Vibrio vulnificus, a bacteria that tends to infect people via undercooked seafood.
After you ingest the cholera bacteria, it'll hang out in your gut for a few days before symptoms kick in. Once they do, though, cholera can kill you within hours. How? I'll be blunt: Massive, constant diarrhea that drains the body of fluids and electrolytes and leaves victims looking like glassy-eyed, hollow-cheeked corpses before they actually are.
Nobody knows exactly how old cholera is, but, from a pop-culture perspective, it's inextricably linked to the 19th century, when several pandemic waves took cholera from its roots in the Indian subcontinent to being the first global killer—taking advantage of increased trade and immigration to strike Asia, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and the Americas.
And it was a complete mystery. At the time, disease was thought to spread via "bad air", a pre-germ theory explanation for the patterns left by person-to-person contact. But cholera didn't seem to fit. The doctor could visit a house riddled with the disease, and walk away unscathed. And, yet, at the same time, cholera swept through whole neighborhoods—usually the poor ones—killing hundreds, or thousands.
You probably know the story of Dr. John Snow. During the 1854 cholera epidemic in London, Snow took the radical and now-laughably-obvious step of mapping cholera deaths throughout the city. He found that the outbreaks centered around nexus points, which lined up with public water pumps—specifically, the pumps that sourced their water from the downstream end of the Thames. And that's how we learned a valuable lesson. Preventing cholera is easy. All you have to do is make sure that people don't have to drink water that's been contaminated with sewage.
Today, cholera is all but non-existent in developed countries. Not because we're immune. Not because we have access to a miracle drug. It's simply about money. Money, and the will to build public sanitation systems that treat the poor and the wealthy to an equal level of separation between what we drink and what we excrete. After all, there were water services in Dr. Snow's time, but they were heavily divided by class. The wealthy drew their drinking water from upstream and dumped their sewage below that point, where it made its way to the public wells used by everybody who couldn't afford the better water.
Malaria is often what we talk about when we talk about diseases of poverty. But simple diarrhea kills more people every year. Cholera is only one part of that.
And it is all about the money. What kills you isn't so much the diarrhea, itself, but the loss of fluids and essential salts and minerals. Replace enough of those, soon enough, and people tend to survive. This is a disease that can be cured with Brawndo. (It's got what cholera victims crave!) In fact, one of the greatest public health inventions of the 20th century—and, perhaps, the most underrated—is the pre-mixed Oral Rehydration Therapysachet—little packets containing dried mixtures of mostly sodium and glucose. Pour a packet into clean water, and you have an instant treatment for cholera. This is pretty much all that stands between a bout of cholera meaning a really bad, gross week, and a bout of cholera meaning death.
Cholera is a disease of poverty. But it's also a disease that prefers warmer water, high salinity, and algae blooms for ideal growth conditions. This fascinating NPR story talks about cholera's connection to the environment. In some parts of the world, it's even demonstrated a seasonal pattern. Does that mean cholera is also a disease of climate change? Maybe. But also maybe not. There are a lot of unknowns, a lot of potential factors involved in the spread of cholera, and scientists are only starting to tease all those threads apart.
Right now, people are dying in Haiti not because we don't know how to save them, but because of a lack of access, both to clean water and to Oral Rehydration Therapy. In other words, they are dying not because of a disease, but because of poverty.
How You Can Help: 
• Donate to Doctors Without Borders and help get Oral Rehydration Therapy to people who need   it.  There is a GIF link on the upper right hand corner of this blog that allows you to donate directly to Doctors Without Borders! 
• Donate to World Vision, which does both medical work, and helps bring clean, safe drinking water to communities around the world. 
• Donate to Water.Org, a charity devoted to water infrastructure projects.
Some Other, Related Links:
• Fault activity indicates that
 Haiti is at risk of more, and possibly larger, earthquakes 
• Fascinating piece explaining how cholera can hide, dormant in a population for years, waiting for a sanitation crisis to attack 
• Cholera at The Bacteria Museum 
• The Climate Connection: How warming oceans can influence the spread of cholera 
• Interesting information on what the toxin produced by cholera bacteria does in the human body and why it causes diarrhea

Taking Vashington, Dahlink....

I have to note the passing of animation artist and writer, Alexander Anderson Jr. who along with Jay Ward, created the Rocky and Bullwinkle series in the late 50's.
Perhaps Rocky and Bullwinkle were one of the most important formative influences to my prepubescent psyche. The subtle, subversive political humor and social undertones of the plots certainly mocked the paranoia and right wing fear mongering of the era in a way that was entertaining to the Simpsons, to day, Rocky and Bullwinkle could cloak its social statements in broad humor which could be ignored or reinterpreted by those who only wanted to believe what they wanted to believe.
I think this little Boris and Natasha snippet is timeless and could have been written today...

Quote Of The Day/Oct.28, 2010

Sometimes the appropriate response to reality is to go insane.
Philip K. Dick, Valis

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Tender Lumplings

At this time last year, I was in NYC and suddenly, it was Halloween...It was a pretty wild night as we walked through the West Village to Union Square. This year, we are here, home in La Sechere, but I already have that creepy Halloween feeling and I'm trying to scare myself silly.
Here's a little Halloween appetizer, Danny Elfman and two of the members of his band Oingo Boingo sing a little traditional Halloween Zombie Carol, just for you!

Quote Of The Day/Oct.27, 2010

Time is nature’s way of keeping everything from happening at once.
- Woody Allen

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


It's Bigger than America, It's the International Tea Bag Party!
AlterNet and The Nation Institute's Investigative Fund teamed up to put together this fabulous report on Tea Party, Inc. Click here for the larger size -- this picture is worth about 10,000 words, but the report is well worth the read, too.

Win or lose, the Tea Party movement will come away from next week's elections triumphant, having injected into the Republican Party a group of candidates pledged to the dismantling of government and wed to the religious right. Of the movement's dozen favored candidates for U.S. Senate, all are anti-abortion, and five oppose it even in cases of rape and incest. Among their number are Colorado's Ken Buck, who has compared homosexuality to alcoholism, and Nevada's Sharron Angle, who wants to demolish both the Department of Education and the Environmental Protection Agency. Major GOP players, from political strategist Karl Rove to former Bush speechwriter David Frum, have fretted publicly over Tea Party extremism, with Frum complaining of the movement's "paranoid delusions."

AlterNet drives home the truth about the Tea Party, how they all link together with Fox News, the Ralph Reed religious coalitions, pet issues near and dear to the extreme right wing, and ultimately, to their hand-picked wingnut candidates: O'Donnell, Toomey, Johnson, Paul, Rubio, Buck, Lee, Miller.
Share it with everyone you can. Since we can't rely on the mainstream media to give us a road map laced with reality, reports like these are worth their weight in gold.

Some of Europe's top polluters are funding the political campaigns of Tea Party candidates and others in the United States who deny global warming, according to a report by Climate Action Network Europe.
The twelve page report (.pdf) is based on information recently published by the Open Secrets database.
The European companies singled out as major polluters in the report are Lafarge, GDF-SUEZ, EON, BP, BASF, BAYER, Solvay and Arcelor Mittal.
Combined, these companies donated $107,200 to climate change deniers running for Senate seats. In addition, "their total support for senators blocking climate change legislation in the US amounts to $240,200, which is almost 80% of their total spendings in 2010 Senate race," the report says.
By comparison, Koch Industries, a company that has helped fund the Tea Party movement and openly opposes President Obama's economic policies, has donated $217,000.
Among those being supported by these European companies include Tea Party-backed Senator James Inhofe and Senator James DeMint. Inhofe has claimed that global warming is "the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people" and DeMint once seemed to imply that a snowstorm in Washington, DC invalidated global warming.
"Skepticism and outright denial of global warming are among the articles of faith of the Tea Party movement," writes John M. Broder of the New York Times. "All are wary of the Obama administration’s plans to regulate carbon dioxide, a ubiquitous gas, which will require the expansion of government authority into nearly every corner of the economy."
"These European companies are simultaneously lobbying against aggressive emissions reductions in Europe – and are arguing that such reductions should not be pursued until the United States takes action," says the report. "The European companies are funding almost exclusively Senate candidates who have been outspoken in their opposition to comprehensive climate policy in the U.S., and candidates who actively deny the scientific consensus that climate change is happening and is caused by people."
The revelation comes after news that the United States Chamber of Commerce received money from 83 foreign companies.
A report by ThinkProgress calculates that the 83 companies, in total, contributed $885,000 to the Chamber general fund, which pays for political ads.
Republican Senator from Idaho Mike Crapo, who recently received the lowest possible score by the League of Conservation Voters, received $10,000 in contributions.
Other recipients included John Cornyn (R-TX), John Barrasso (R-WY), Roy Blunt (R-MO), Orrin Hatch (R-UT), David Vitter (R-LA), Chuck Grassley (R-IO), Blanche Lincoln (D-AR), Mary Landrieu (D-LA) and Lisa Murkowski (I-AK).


    Outside the Conway-Rand Paul debate in KY, Paul supporters held down a woman from MoveOn while another stomped on her neck and head. The woman was attempting to present Paul with a mock Employee of the Month award from Republicorp representing the merger of the GOP and business interests controlling political speech.

    She was representing the liberal organization and claimed to be presenting Paul with an award from RepubliCorp. That's a group created by that focuses on what it calls the merger between corporate America and the Republican Party.

    "I'm here to present Rand Paul with the 'Employee of the Month' award, however his supporters were not very nice to me and my message which is same as everyone else. I got my head stepped on and I have a bit of a headache," said Lauren Valle,

    The woman denied police were involved, but right afterwards officers pulled her aside to question her about the incident.
    Freedom of Speech? A Right to Dissent? Reasonable, logical discourse? Hey, if you don't think like these jerks do and you want to ask an irritating, pesky question, you can just kiss your fuckin ass goodbye....because, nobody cares, not even the corrupt racist stupid cops.... ohh cripes...did I offend any of you neo nazi teabaggin sumbags out there? Excuse me......but just, please,
     Compare this incident of actual thuggery to the wingnuts' favorite example of supposed "union thuggery," the fake victimhood of wingnut Kenneth Gladney. (The folks at SEIU have a complete rundown of just how deeply phony that entire incident really was.) It also brings to mind certain other history lessons.

    Quote Of The Day/Oct.26, 2010

    “What’s at stake in France is not the retirement age, or jobs for students, but the very nature of power in this country."
    Microdot who is still very much alive.

    Religion: How America Avoids Reality

    Jerrycrew writes: "We had to abort our 16-week-week-old dying baby and were accosted by these zealots. Read the full story on my personal blog and

    We’re used to seeing videos of anti-abortion activists spewing venom in front of women’s clinics, but rarely do we get to see the tables turned. Thanks to Aaron Gouveia, now we do.
    He and his 16-weeks-pregnant wife went to a women’s clinic in Brookline, Mass. for an abortion after discovering that their baby had a congenital deformity with no chance for survival. On their way in, they were confronted by images of dismembered fetuses and two women yelling, “You’re killing your unborn baby!” Enraged, Gouveia decided to confront the protesters while his wife was in surgery, and he caught the whole interaction on his cellphone.

    This was one human who chose to confront the self righteous self proclaimed moral arbiters who have decided to impose their particular religious ideals on everyone. Life is precious becomes a vague concept to them instead of a reality to be dealt with. Life is precious, but please, get off of your soapbox and start caring for the living! As Jerry says in the video to the protesters, "You are the lowest common denominator!"

    Meanwhile, the TeaBaggers try to make as much mileage out of the religious and moral self righteousness of the Amnerican Public to squeamish to deal with the reality and social responsibilities.
    Witness this exchange during the final US Senate debate between Ken Buck and Michael Bennet: Ken Buck was asked to respond to a viewer question about whether he would force a rape victim to carry her attacker's baby to term. KCNC's Gloria Neal kept pressing the question when Ken Buck failed to answer directly and suggested the issue wasn't important to voters.

    Un Vrai Bouree!

    An Occitanian musical experience by 2 two masters of the vielle, Patrick Bouffard and Gilles Chabenet. The vielle is a sort of relative to the hurdy has drone strings and strings which are played by pressing wooden keys while cranking a disc which vibrates the strings.
    It is a true medieval instrument and it's piercing sound and volume made ti the perfect machine to propell the wild country dance music of Aquitane and the Auvergne...I've tried to play them, some day perhaps I'll own one...

    Monday, October 25, 2010

    Quote Of The Day/Oct.25, 2010

    I’ve been 40 years discovering that the queen of all colors was black.
    Auguste Renoir

    Sunday, October 24, 2010

    The Pirate Song

    It's 1975 and Rutland Weekend Television has been highjacked by Pirate Bob....

    Quote Of The Day/Oct.24, 2010

    People who bite the hand that feeds them usually lick the boot that kicks them.
    Eric Hoffer

    Saturday, October 23, 2010

    3lb Of Wet Jelly

    Under The Right Circumstances.....

    You know how you keep hearing about the foreclosure crisis and how it's caused by the poor deadbeats getting loans and stuff, and if Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae hadn't been involved everything would be OK, because them poor deadbeats just made a deal with EYES WIDE OPEN.

    Yeah, not so much. The research shows that Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae loans weren't the problem.

    The problem was, and is, the banksters. Read on:
    Beyond Bogus – Docx Assignment of Mortgage – Bogus Assignee for Intervening Asmts

    Amid mountain of paperwork, shortcuts and forgeries mar foreclosure process

    Robo-signers: Mortgage experience not necessary

    Witness: Foreclosure firm owner gave gifts for altering documents

    Mortgage foreclosure uproar sweeps up Northeast Ohioans

    Dart Halting Evictions for Second Time in Two Years
    Sheriff says he wants proof from lenders that evictions are legitimate, legal
    I don't know how one buys a house without title insurance. Abstract of Title is a big industry.

    So who's on the hook for all this fraud and deception?

    I think that if a person/institution can't prove they own YOUR house they can't foreclose on it. That's just logical. It hasn't stopped them, but somebody should.

    In the majority of cases, it has been shown that the banks could have been challenged and if they were, many of the foreclosures would have been proven illegal. The real problem is the lack of solidarity and the real denial of the immediacy of how this problem is not just someone else' is everyones!
    Americans have become isolated and powerless because they have been made to feel that poverty is a communicable disease.....

    Quote Of The Day/Oct.23, 2010

    If in the last few years you haven’t discarded a major opinion or acquired a new one, check your pulse.
    You may be dead.
    Frank Gelett Burgess (1866-1951)

    Friday, October 22, 2010

    Tyranny by Tantrum

    So, Arizona Democratic Congressman, Raul Grivalja's office had to be shut down yesterday after a bag of white powder in a Swastika emblazoned envelope was delivered and the substance in the bag proved to be hydroxyacentenalide, which is indeed a toxin which can be used safely in Tylenol, so it is easily obtained, but in amounts as large as were sent to the congressman's office, it can be very dangerous. Whether or not the amount or the actual toxicity of the substance was an imediate danger, the reality was that the Swastika emblazoned package was meant to terroize.
    In recent weeks the tempo of threats against "Liberals" running in the upcoming election has increased exponentially. We recently saw Patty Murray supporters in Spokane, Washington threatened by a meat cleaver wielding fellow who thought Liberal politicians were out to "get him"
    On Sept.22, in East St. Louis, Il, an Army veteran arrested after a seven-hour standoff was charged Wednesday with threatening to kill President Barack Obama as part of what authorities said was his plan to ignite a war between Muslims and Christians and "start an apocalypse.
    On Oct. 15, in Peoria a mentally ill man was sentenced to two years in prison for repeatedly threatening to kill the president.
    Also on Oct. 15, in Brattleboro, VT, A 43-year-old Vermont man who threatened to kill the president via his Twitter account and blog is receiving a mental health evaluation before he stands trial.
    Sure, most of these folks will be found to be mentally ill and that is the cop out used by the right wing pundits will insist they have nothing to do with this -- this is just crazy people.
    Part of the problem is that we actually have seen this happen time after time after time: A mentally unstable person is inspired by hateful right-wing rhetoric to act out violently -- and yet because of that mental state, the matter is dismissed as idiosyncratic, just another "isolated incident." And over the months and years, these "isolated incidents" mount one after another.

    But simply ascribing these acts to mental illness is a cop-out. It fails to account for the gross irresponsibility of the people who employed the rhetoric that inspired the violent action in the first place, and their resulting moral culpability.

    And now today, we have the video of a frequent guest of the Rodeo Clown, The Reverend Stephen Broden, A South Dallas, Texas Pastor who is the Tea Bag Republican Congressional Candidate advocating a violent overthrow of the government if the Tea Baggers don't get their way in the upcoming November Election.
    He said, he would not rule out violent overthrow of the government if elections did not produce a change in leadership.
    In a rambling exchange during a TV interview, Broden, a South Dallas pastor, said a violent uprising "is not the first option," but it is "on the table." That drew a quick denunciation from the head of the Dallas County GOP, who called the remarks "inappropriate."
    Broden, a first-time candidate, is challenging veteran incumbent Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson in Dallas' heavily Democratic 30th Congressional District. Johnson's campaign declined to comment on Broden.
    In the interview, Brad Watson, political reporter for WFAA-TV (Channel 8), asked Broden about a tea party event last year in Fort Worth in which he described the nation's government as tyrannical.
    "We have a constitutional remedy," Broden said then. "And the Framers say if that don't work, revolution."
    Watson asked if his definition of revolution included violent overthrow of the government. In a prolonged back-and-forth, Broden at first declined to explicitly address insurrection, saying the first way to deal with a repressive government is to "alter it or abolish it."
    "If the government is not producing the results or has become destructive to the ends of our liberties, we have a right to get rid of that government and to get rid of it by any means necessary," Broden said, adding the nation was founded on a violent revolt against Britain's King George III.
    Watson asked if violence would be an option in 2010, under the current government.
    "The option is on the table. I don't think that we should remove anything from the table as it relates to our liberties and our freedoms," Broden said, without elaborating. "However, it is not the first option"
    Read more in today's Dallas News here.....

    Ida Lupino

    I love the music of Carla Bley and this piece, Ida Lupino has been recorded by her and a few other artists. This is a recording by her ex husband, the great pianist, Paul Bley from his 1973 releases, Open To Love.

    Quote Of The Day/Oct.22, 2010

    Art consists of limitation.
    The most beautiful part of every picture is the frame.
    G. K. Chesterton

    Thursday, October 21, 2010


    I have been a fan for many years of the Belgian Comic Strip, Cowboy Henk. This is a recent piece which has a ridiculous title, as Cowboy Henk has not been around for 50 years, maybe 35....
    Herr Seele is the artist and Kamagurka is the writer and together they have been creating visual mayhem since the mid 80' on the panel to see it enlarged....
    by the way, osblaaspop means inflatable doll.

    Another Point Of View

    Yes, I know, but Bootsy Collins is still the guy I would like to be when I finally grow up.
    Bootsy live in Houston, probably early 90's. I would pay attention to the last 30 seconds of the piece if I wanted to be absolutely immolated by the shear funkosity of Mr. Collins gargantuanous technical propensities.....GARRRR!

    The Blind Swimmer

    (The Blind Swimmer is a painting by Max Ernst from 1934. Again an exploration in technique suggesting a subconcious association. This is oil on canvas) 
     This morning, I took a drive down to Terrasson to do some shopping and kind of get the smell of the atmosphere. I am located in the real interior of rural France. Though there are strikes and shutdowns, this area is relatively is relative, because there were practically no cars on the roads. There is gas in the stations, because nobody is driving or buying while the prices are jacked up. Here, there is a traditionally peasant mentality. 
    It was pleasant to be able to find a place to park in the center of Terrasson. Terrasson is not a very big place. It is the oldest continually inhabited spot in Europe with an 12th century bridge over the Vezere River built by the Benedictine Monks. The lower town sits on the river, but the cliffs are where humans have dwelt before recorded time. The town on top of the cliff is verticle, the streets become stairways leading to l'eglise de St. Sour at the top of the ramparts. looking down from the ramparts, you can see in the rooftops, a history of architecture that melds from century to century, from medieval to the 20th in a seamless organic flow.
    I really felt a sense of peace. I think I experienced a true moment of now....where now became one with yesterday and the future. Is this Zen?
    Here is some more Zen:

    Zen is Right Here

    A student asked in dokusan, “If a tree falls in the forest and no one hears it, does it make a sound?”
    Suzuki Roshi answered, “It doesn’t matter.”
    One day at Tassajara, Suzuki Roshi and a group of students took some tools and walked up a hot, dusty trail to work on a project. When they got to the top, they discovered that they had forgotten a shovel, and the students began a discussion about who should return to get it. After the discussion had ended, they realized that Roshi wasn’t there. He was already halfway down the mountain trail, on his way to pick up the shovel.
    for more Zen, click here!