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Seth Fisher. May he rest in peace.

Tunes N. Stuff

May 7th Edition of the Anti Lawrence Welk/Anti VH1 Soul Jazz Show

This is a special Jimi Hendrix Edition.

Cinematic Orchestra
Charlie Hunter
Coltrane Alabama
Lady Day "Fine and Mellow" "He's the lowest man..."
Amel Larrieux Live
Portishead double play
Crazy Azz Buckethead Does Hendrix!
Paladium by Weather Report (not a good vid but it's Weather Report! And its one of my favorite tunes...)
Sergio Mendez 66 features two hot Brazilian chicks and no annoying rap over
"Advice for the Young at Heart" Tears for Fears
Hope Sandoval (very Norah Jonesy)
Victor Wooten Amazing Grace
Tunnels (Features Percy Jones, Brit bassist who's still alive who I always thought was as good as jaco...)
Ego Wrappin' (Japanese ska jazz...again: don't know the words, but I think I get what she's sayin'"
Little Wing Clapton and Crow
Hey Joe Jimi still pay blues right?

Mahavishnu Orchestra "You Know You Know"

This show, about 2 and a half hours long if you listen to everything (hey, no commercials), features two very rare performances by Mahavishnu Orchestra. There's an excellent chance that you won't see any of these songs on VH1 Classic, VH1 Soul, MTV Hits, or BET on J. It's a nice mix of old and new. So enjoy. This is the second installment of the Anti Lawrence Welk/Anti VH1 Soul Jazz show. And, quite frankly, it features better performances, song writing and outright talent than you will ever see on those aforementioned stations.

Nina Simone's "Feelin' Good"
Nikka Costa "Suger in My Bowl"
Cowboy Bebop Theme
Cowboy Bebop Theme Live (Female Composer)
Mahavishnu Orchestra "You Know You Know"

Joni Mitchell and Jaco Pastorius "Pork Pie Hat"
"Africa" by obscure tapping Genius Brazilian Guy
"Pyramids" Sun Ra (video not great, but that gorgeous song. You will be transported to another world...)
Telepopmusick (If you like Portishead...)

Jaga Jazzist's "Oslo Skyline"  Well Directed video. So well directed and frenetic that you're not immediately made aware that its about sex...
Mr Scruff's "Honeydew"
French "Bonoboo" I don't understand French but I think I know what he's saying
"Beautiful Lili" Tim Hagens
"Swing Shift" Cinderella by Legendary Cartoonist Tex Avery
Royal Crown Review

Go Team "Lady flash"
Classic Aretha
Dave's True Story New Video (Okay, only video)
Portishead "All Mine"
"Naima" John Coltrane
Stina (She rips off Horace Silver's "Song for my Father", just as Steely Dan did with "Rikki Don't Lose that Number")

"Zoot Allures" Frank Zappa
Remixed Bjork
Louis Jordan "Honey Chile"
D angelo "Chicken Grease"
Pick Two from Carlos Santana. Either "Samba Pa Ti" or Europa with the Playboy Models
Mahavishnu Orchestra "Lotus on Irish Streams". I think this is one of the most beautiful jazz performances that I have ever seen. It's a good ending for this weekend's show. Real music. Real musicians.



First, the evildoers at BET on Jazz transformed themselves into BET on J, where the only time I'll be hearing jazz will be on commercials or the station promos. Yet I at least had Ovation, which would show one or two interesting concerts per week. Not much. But something if you're over 14 and like tunes. Today, they got rid of Ovation--its in my luxury tier and they didn't even bother to ask me if this was something I wanted--and replaced it with movie channels. That gives me about 40 or so movie channels. Nothing for jazz. Thanks fellas.

On the other hand, I just discovered YouTube and its virtually a mecca for music fans.

Here's what I've been able to find so far.

Zero 7 (Take Me Home)
Zero 7 (Somersault) Features corny dancing.
Zero 7 "End Theme"
Zero 7 "Destiny"
Three Cat Power Vids: here, here and here (This is Rockets. It features war footage that you won't be seeing on MTV, ever.)
Rare Esthero and finally "That Girl" and "Heaven Sent" Vids.
Massive Attack "Protection" and "Be Thankful for What You've Got" (with full frontal nudity)
Mahavishnu Orchestra "Celestial Terrestial Commuters" (where it looks like they almost lose that tricky time signature...)
Koop Anime Vid
Cowboy Bebop Theme
Devo "Uncontrollable Urge" (Check out the choreography at the end. Very cool.)
Jamiriquai "Alright"
And You Will Know Us By Our Trail of Dead "Mistakes and Regrets"
Nice streamlined Bjork tune here and funny Bjork parody here and here.
Nirvana "Pennyroyal Tea"
Big Benefit Song Featuring Classic Soul Singers (not bad..)
Classic Chaka Khan and Rufus (wow)
ELP "From the Beginning" and Yes "Roundabout"
King Crimson (old lineup) Court of the Crimson Ki ing ah aaa ah
Return to Forever "Hymn of the Seventh Galaxy"
DJ Shadow "Six Days" and faster dance version here.
Stunning Hancock, Clarke Shorter and Hakim. Stunning.
Portishead "Only You" and "Glorybox Live"
Weather Report "Teen Town"
Frank Zappa "Alien Oriface" (a real jazz rock tune.) Tons more Zappa. Frank: I miss you...
Big Audio Dynamite "E=MC2"
XTC "Making Plans for Nigel"
John McLaughlin and Jonas Hellborg "Goodbye Pork Pie Hat"
John McLaughlin, Trilok Gurtu, LeBeque Sisters
Allan Holdsworth "Proto Cosmos"
PJ Harvey "Who the Fuck" and "The Letter"
John Scofield "Loud Jazz"
John Scofield, with the late Don Pullen "Funk"
Jimi Hendrix "Little Wing" (with NASA slideshow? (Rocket scientists have good taste in music...)
Pat Martino and John Scofield "Sunny" with Joey D on keys...
Astrud Gilberto "Girl from Ipanema"
David Bowie "John I'm Only Dancing" and "Jump They Say"
Beatles "Revolution"
Beatles "Don't Let Me Down" and from the Beatles toon "Tomorrow Never Knows"
Kaki King "Pretty Pink Noise"
Bill Evans "If You Could See Me Now"

I'm really impressed with this online comic designed for the PSP. If you've never read William Gibson, well, this is kind of what's its like. Some of it even works like animation. Nice effort. I couldn't put it down or, rather, stop clicking.

Jan. 22


This week we celebrate the work of Karl Bang, who I discovered while doing public interest porn research. Someone has to do that you know...

Jan. 21

And now for something completely different: The Get Your War On Players.



Item: I also posted this defense of the film V for Vendetta, already being attacked by the usual suspects.

. First, I think movies with a political bent--be it Passion of the Christ or the newest Mike Moore movie-can sell. You just have to accept that the Mike Moore audience isn't the same as the Passion audience. From what I've seen of the V for Vendetta film it looks to be outstanding but I must admit that I'm a Mike Moore fan.

Two, I think Alan has some right to complain about how his adaptations have turned out. But I sort of blame him for signing away ownership of his books to begin with! That's not something that the world's smartest writer should be doing. For the life of me, I don't know why Tom Strong, Promethea and Top Ten aren't the newest series by HBO or Showtime. He could get excellent directors like Terry Gilliam, and he must have Frank Miller's phone number somewheres. I think he's right in thinking that a 2 hour visual medium couldn't do his work right. But you give me 14 hours on HBO/Showtime, with Terry Gilliam or the Sin City crew producing, and I'll give you some great great art, period. Alan: Let me be your manager. Just once.

Philip Shropshire

PS: If you don't like V for Vendetta, then don't watch it. I'm going to be first in line. I think terrorists are made, not born, in films and in real life, whether it's a fictional future England or Iraq...



Item: Quick movie reviews. I enjoyed Syriana although I agree with Max Sawicky that you would need to show Israel playing some role. Glad Doc Bashir got a great movie role. I just don’t think Firefly is that interesting and the fact that the lead reminds me of a confederate guy…not so cool. I thought the South was wrong. There I said it. Perhaps it’s my cultural bias. Who knew. Need to know a little bit more about what he was fighting for…God what a heartbreaking yet brilliant movie Million Dollar Baby is. The Morgan Freeman voiceover is a guarantee of a level of excellence. Really is. Don’t let Morgan approach you with that one Yellow Glove…One thing though: I wouldn’t have chosen death. Despite that South Korean hack there will be some promising therapies at the end of this year, but I guess the point of the movie is that there are no happy decisions in this particular reality. Choose between the two bad draws…I respected her choice. 

Item: I found out about Kaki King’s sexual preference and I’m disappointed. Damn this sexual evolution…I drown my sorrows with an update over at Red Light. By the way, some of those erotic pics rise to the level of Great Art. Look at that water… 


Item: My disturbing yet brilliant (really) short story, “The Science Fiction Story as Life Metaphor” will be published this weekend by the Front, imaginary God a willin’…It’s about time someone alluded to Richard Wright, Henry Miller and William Gibson in a science fiction story. I’m not sure if that someone is me but you never know…Ya never know. 

Dec. 25

Item: Now, what is an Atheist supposed to do on Christmas? I would imagine that I would get some work done. So, here's a xmas-y update at the Red Light District. In related news, I promised not to link to this story featuring nude women photo shopped in superhero clothes. I must show some restraint despite my cultural proclivities. Must. Not. Link. Yes, it combines comics and soft core erotica...but...Ack! I am not strong...

Item: This is something that I just noticed but the best atheist propaganda I've seen on television comes from the mouths of toons. I'm thinking of the two South Parks that demolished Mormonism and Scientology. And last Sunday's Boondocks ("A Huey Christmas")--which kinda sucked when it first started but is getting better--there was a nice history of Christmas, which restates its origin as a pagan holiday which used to be illegal--

--Now that I think of it: isn't the message of Christ a message against materialism? Why would he care if there was a slump in winter sales?--

--There was even an episode of "Drawn Together" that featured gun toting fundamentalists. Of course, the religious person can't ever be wrong. He or she communicates with Allah or God or Ron Hubbard and could never get it wrong. That's why those fundie liars in Dover, chastised by the Republican judge as such, were so scary. They didn't mind lying under oath, swearing upon a Bible no less, because their lies served a higher them anyway. To a more impartial observer it looked like deliberately keeping people stupid, which seems to be the purpose of most religious thought. Afterall, who's more likely to think the Pope doesn't talk to God: The guy who can comprehend "Why I'm Not a Christian" or the guy who can't read and gets all his food from the church. Why, it would seem to me that the church would have a profound interest in keeping the masses poor and stupid. It makes for better sheep.

So, until they give the Infidel Guy his own cable show, look at South Park, Drawn Together, and the Boondocks for your religious criticism. No wonder Bill O Reilly doesn't like Comedy Central...

I've also come to the conclusion that there's something hard wired into people that makes them accept silly notions--whether its the scientology aliens, or the Mormon's New World Jesus or popes in funny hats or virgin births or dozens of virgins after you die and so on--when they cross dress as Religions. I could actually see, before the current age of science and reason, why a fairy tale afterlife might seem necessary just to survive. It really is an opiate in that sense. And, frankly, religion appears to be a drug that a lot of people need.

Item: Speaking of subversive television, I kind of enjoyed Sleeper Cell, which featured an undercover black Muslim. As much as I loved Peta Wilson in La Femme Nikita and will probably watch Jack Bauer again in 24, if you were going to infiltrate Al Q then an angry black Muslim would probably be a wise choice. Of course, he might also have some potential as a double agent. Frankly, if you kill 100000 Iraqis and steal their oil shouldn't you expect a backlash? If you were a citizen in the Middle East (excluding, possibly, Israel. Although I think the war on terror makes Israel more of a target) would you feel safer that the US knew they could kill your citizens and take your resources without hint of payback or consequence? I wouldn't. And no Mr. NSA minder that doesn't mean that I would join terrorist fundies--which I loathe whether they worship Allah or the Catholic Clergy--just that I can understand why they Hate us: For Good Reason.

By the way, when did I know this was a work of fiction? When our lead character actually showed some remorse when a kid talked about his time in Gitmo. He even showed shame and pain. That's when I knew that I was watching a fantasy television show...I might note that if you have this new fangled OnDemand feature with your cable you can watch all 9 episodes at once...

Item: Even though I'm thrilled with the Dover decision, the bitter reality is that the courts aren't on Reason's side. For example, we (the forces of Reason and Light and free porn) lost an appeals court case where the court ruled that there is no separation between Church and State. More than likely, had that judge been presiding over the Dover case Reason would have lost. And being that was an appeals court, there's an excellent chance that Dover could be won on appeal, probably through the sixth circuit. Scary stuff. That's just great. Of course, now I can proudly post my Flying Spaghetti Monster T shirts by all mangers and such. Hey, my Imaginary God is just as good as yours...

(Patty, Muriel, Kaki, and Mimi, with a great new hairstyle)

Item: I really hope the La Guitara X-Girl guitarists  ("We must know who they are, and above all, what they can do!") put out a live DVD of their concert. La Guitara is like a who's who of the best female guitarists on the planet. It's both an album and a concert series. It features Mimi Fox, Patty Larkin, Muriel Anderson and Kaki King. It would not be unlike a tour that featured male guitarists like Stanley Jordan, Allan Holdsworth, Tuck Andress and Preston Reed. I'd pay for that show, too. Mimi Fox talks about the tour here and you can see pictures of the primary La Guitara quartet over at Muriel Anderson's site, apparently lil' Kaki likes Merry Go Round Ponies purple dinosaurs. Yeah, I can think of a lot of things I'd like Kaki to ride...because she's so talented n' all, if she even likes boys. No matter. I'm working on an Anti-Tony Mowad Jazz Show podcast and Kaki will be in it. Please don't sue me. (Tony already plays Mimi...)


New V for Vendetta Posters.



I was researching porn (for an update at Red Light) and I ran into Art.


The above novel was written by my cousin Leonce Gaiter. I didn't even know he had written it and published it. I discovered it when someone else linked to it--I think it was Steve Gilliard.

He also has a blog where he writes about New Orleans and his family's past, which also happens to be my past.

Here's an excerpt:

King of spades: My parents got out of New Orleans decades before Katrina, but for the same reasons that begat the tragedy. I lived there only briefly, but even as a child I knew that the attitude among the city’s poor, black population was unlike anything I’d ever experienced. My parents were 60s bourgeois strivers, and they insisted on three things: excellence to thwart the race hatred that threatened them, controlled rage to keep its memories fresh because more often than not, cultures die before they change, and finally arrogance in the knowledge that while the majority with all its power did its best to belittle us—they had failed.

Instead of this sustaining triumvirate, in New Orleans I saw hopelessness and resignation. There was about the people a sense that they would never get but crumbs from someone else’s plate. And to make this bitter pill palatable, they had only the Jesus that white people had thrust upon them hundreds of years ago with the express goal of making their ancestor’s enslavement less troublesome to maintain. Enslavement, Jim Crow, reeking prejudice, and then malignant neglect. Yes, history lives; and racial history lives longer.

Ace of Diamonds: Even conservatives are bashing Bush and his government’s and his personal response to this tragedy. Andrew Sullivan wrote:

Real conservatives believe that the state should do a few things that no one else can do – defense, decent public education, police, law and order among the most obvious – and leave the rest to individuals. Funding FEMA and having a superb civil defense are very much part of conservatism’s real core. It’s when government decides to reshape society, redistribute wealth, socially engineer, and take over functions that the private sector can do just as well that conservatives draw the line. The reason I’m mad as hell over Katrina is precisely because I’m a conservative and this kind of thing is exactly what government is for.    





That's jazz rock hero John Mclaughlin.




Today's Interspersed Theme: Girl with the Beautiful Tone

Esthero "That Girl" (only vid I could find)



Mahavishnu Orchestra Covers by Gregg Bendian's Mahavishnu Project
Try "You Know You Know" and "Meeting of the Spirits" (Real Actual Jazz Rock That's Downloadable!)
Massive Attack's "Protection", featuring Everything But the Girl vocalist
Only Goldfrapp tune I like "Pilots"
Try All The Superior Koop Vids but "Summer Sun" makes you want to live, even if they have stolen your vote.

Trail of Dead's "Caterwaul" (rips off Led Zep's "Black Dog" but in a good way...)
NERD's "Maybe"
Portishead's "Glory Box"
Terranova's "Chase the Blues Away"
Eighty Mile Beach's "Red Helicopters" (need more clarinet in acid jazz)
Zero 7 "Destiny Live"
And I Gotta Have More Cowbell! "Little Sister"
Broadcast's "Papercuts" (I am amazed by this band.)


Lately, I've been addicted to Broadcast. They're a part of    that Birmingham Trip-Hop scene that I really can't get enough of. They have some vids on the Internet. Here's a list of what I think is the best music on the net. This is an ongoing list.


Best Online Music Sites

Adrian Belew (prog rock)

He has the right attitude. All of his personal vids are available for download. My fave is the duet with David Bowie. Pretty Pink Rose.

And You Will Know Us By Our Trail of Dead (alt rock)

Actually, I don't like all of their tunes, but I think "Relative Ways" and "Early Morning Stoner" are some of the best rock vids I've seen over the last 10 years. I also like what I 've heard of their new album.

Broadcast (alt trip hoppy acidy jazzie)

I can't get enough of this band
. If you're a fan of Portishead or Esthero, then you'll probably like Broadcast. I also highly recommend City in Progress, Come Let's Go, and the World Backwards, when you buy them legally at your fave online music downloader, or from Emule, which would be wrong, probably....

Patricia Barber (out jazz singer)

She has one vid online and it'a a good one. I first saw this on BEt on Jazz. Catch her great screaming at the end of the tune...

Buckyball records (jazz rock)

The only place on line that I've seen actual real life jazz rock music. Buckyball seems to be made up of the remnants of the great Brit fusion band Brand X, most notably sinewy Jaco-like bassist Percy Jones and flashy guitarist John Goodsall.

audio here

vids here

Cat Power (alt rock)

I've always liked Cat Power. I think her best vids are:

He War
Nude as the News

You can also find two of her better protest tunes over at

Click on Volume 1. And try "Rockets" and "Maybe Not"

Stanley Clarke (jazz rock living legend)
I'm still checking these out..

Helium (alt rock)
I just caught this at Matador. I give it a B.

Kaki King (jazzy acoustic guitar virtuoso)

Looks like they're putting all of her first album out there for free at her first label. You can't download it. But you could tape and then record it as an Mp3, if you had the proper equipment and hated America I guess..

You have to scroll around.

She moved up to the big label Sony of course and she now has a video, which you can actually see on vh1 megahits between the mostly garbage that they play... (I'm never going to purchase anything from the Killers. Not gonna happen.)

You can get her new vid plus live performances at the above URL.

Kudu (acid jazz)

I was sniffing around Kaki's old label and I ran into this incredibly acid jazzy band called Kudu. Nice stuff. I'm an acid jazz junkie. I don't do the drugs but I sure love the drug music. Bitches Brew forever....Neo soul at its finest. I don't think I'll be hearing this on WAMO anytime soon.

Read her profile here:

Christian McBride (jazz bassist)

There's just one cover of a Weather Report tune on the Internet. I think this is it...
Boogie Woogie waltz

Brad Melhdau (jazz piano)

The return of Bill Evans, just a wondrous supple sound. He's scary tech wise too, but he doesn't show it off all the time...

Sonic Youth (alt tuned alt rock gods)

All of their vids are online, plus all kinds of live cuts. I have yet to try this out..




Frank Kelly Freas passed away several days ago. He's famous for creating Mad Magazine's grinning mascot.



The Sin City Trailer looks good. It feels like the comic  and Rourke as Marv (below) is an inspired bit of casting. He's played ugly men before. I still think that Ronin or Martha Liberty or even his Batman books would have been better as films but I can see the gritty appeal that Sin City would offer. If I remember the bespectacled character correctly, then Elijah Wood plays a very cool corporate assassin.

posted by Philip Shropshire at 6:23 AM Comments (5)




For those of us who long for another Portishead record or keep on wondering what happened to that gorgeous vocalist who headed Esthero (Update: Esthero just put out a new album and the first song is here. Kinda of a rockin' tune where she says Britney and rapists of little girls (R. Kelly I think but that seemed consensual, urine notwithstanding...) get way too much vid time. Mentions MTV mediocrity by name. I guess I won't be seeing her video too soon..), Ilya might just fill your need for cinematic grooves and beautiful soulful lyrics. If you don't believe me, then watch the incredible video for Bellissomo. It's stunning. Trust me. You can watch it either here at Soundgenerator (A great online site for videos by the way in case you're sick of MTV. They do this relational thing where they point out that if you like Portishead, you might like Ilya. And they were right.) or at the band's site. And here's an interview with the band. The new album, blaring in my personal background, is called They Died for Beauty.

If you're looking for more of this kind of music, I highly recommend Soma online, which actually plays about several different brands of Acid Jazz. I usually have the Secret Agent stuff in the background...

All Hail the Return of the King: And speaking of stunning artists you won't be seeing on the MTV countdown anytime soon--or anywhere on MTV for that matter--Kaki King has a new album out. You might remember I declared Kaki the best female guitarist that I had ever seen, just narrowly beating out Joe Pass Protege Mimi Fox, also incredibly gifted. At her website, she has about three video downloads where you can check out her incredible Stanley Jordanesque tapping style. You can also find a Kaki King NPR interview, which features another video and four of her tunes.

Her compositions are just as mind-blowing as her technique. You're watching a living legend, once in a generation kind of artist. Now, if they would only play her on the radio. All Hail the King.

December 9th, 2004












Seth Fisher. May he rest in peace.

Feb. 1

So I'm pretty depressed about the Alito nomination. Yes, the end of choice, decided upon by a buncha conservative fellas...that's going to go over really really well. You know why I like V for Vendetta? Because I think that's the operating metaphor for the future. And that's just the beginning. People forget the other awful corporatist agenda that this guy will implement with an iron hand. Guess I'll have to pray to the flying spaghetti monster, my lord and savior (and if you don't believe in the superiority of mine lord then you'll have to be killed so that you can understand his love or I'll have to severely curtail your reproductive choices, or something...)for that singularity to come on real fast. I'm flying to Mars, or to the busier ends of the spiral...what? You don't know what that means?

Well, it's obvious that the spiral arms, full of stars and peaceful aliens like The Alien or the Predator or the Neitcheans  or the Dominion, are where the action is at. Note to self: leave Earth as soon as feasible..


Item: Well, I'm certainly very frightened about our government trying to access our Google records. I see that Yahoo and Microsoft have already turned me in, so, thanks fellas. Good thing I never used your services. I'm confident that Google will prevail and my evil NSA minders will never find this, or this or even this. Damn You NSA. my fist shaking in the air Jon Stewart stylee, Damn You.

            Item: This story about the possible space drive is very cool. Looks like the guy might have done some good work even though he blew off his arms working for the Nazis. He lived in Germany, right? Accident happened during the 40s…He’s probably a Nazi…did his work in German and wanted Father Germany to benefit from the find (?)…But hey William Shockley did some good work…Hate the scientist love the science… 

            What it means, if it works, is Mars in an hour and 11 light years in 80 days. Wow. It’s more like hyperspace than a warp drive but I’ll take it. More later on this.

The magnificent art of Kenn Brown.

Nov. 20


Two "We're All Gonna Dieeeeee" Stories from Future Pundit. There's an increasing possibility that you will die from the Avian flu. The flu has an 80 percent mortality rate. He assures us that he will give us some helpful hints to survive if he's not killed by the plague. As for his second massive death scenario, Futurepundit suggests that the geological die off that happens every 60 million years or so is overdue. Could be, and this is my speculation, something that distorts the outer rim of the solar system and forces meteors and comets streaming our way,perhaps that long rumored twin star or a rogue black hole. Who knows. Just something to worry about that you can probably do nothing about--at least not without a viable space program.

Over at Worldchanging, one of the best alternative energy and development blogs, ever, has two interesting stories about wind power--which is already competitive with fossil fuels. One story involves wind turbines that look like high flying kites, or this:

The other story involves something called multi rotor wind power. And it looks like this:

The guy behind Worldchanging was interviewed at Changesurfer radio by the way.

CNN has discovered a South Korean aircar, and apparently forgotten about the French aircar, which has been around for years. We don't invest in those things here because we're evil Americans. I'm buying an eye patch meself. I practice saying Kill Iranians Syrians Bond Now! That's what evil Americans do now. Or, if commenting about the Iraqi War, I note that I mourn the 1500 Americans that have died, and ignore the thousands of Iraqis that we murdered for no good reason. That's evil. And to think I used to regret that this guy stopped writing. No more. Yeah, "Victory is Cheap" when you're not doing the fighting.
A Slacker Astronomy Podcast? I'll have to try that when I have some time...and as I was looking at that I wondered where I could find a podcast directory and that led me to this page...and that led me to Leo Laporte's new radio gig. I miss Leo. Gawd how they destroyed Tech Tv. I never watch it now.
Charlie Stross  has placed his hugo nominated story online for you to read. And so I will.
Please make this available as a toy O Lord I do not believe in.
Article About Aging That Hopefully doesn't insult Aubrey personally.

Teacher and student suspended for bypassing idiotic filters.
Cory Doctorow's fave science program is now available as mp3s and podcasts. And also from Boing Boing: Richard Kadrey offering his new novel as a free PDF. And he points you to another free book (nonfiction) called Democratic Innovation.

Now, this if funny: Lethem and Chabon to the rescue.






My friend El Jefe ("He Shall Rue the Day...") over at Gravity Lens thought this film was eye candy without a story. (Update: he responds on the same thread.)

I disagree. I thought it was a gorgeous looking film with a fairly compelling story. In fact, as I started watching it I wondered why I had never seen it even in Pittsburgh's Indy film theaters. After I finished watching it, I could make a guess. It was produced by French people and featured a doltish fundamentalist lead character who was leading his people to doom. All of this set on a tree of bio tech wreckage, where our female hero disdains hierarchy and gives power to the masses. El Jefe said he saw this coming. Okay. Perhaps El "drowned in Ayn Rand's musky aroma" Jefe didn't like the commie Up With Computer Generated People message at the end. His loss.



And famous pulp fiction painter James Avati, whose work and style you've seen even if you never knew his name (like me), passed away recently. So, whenever an artist shucks off this mortal coil I will honor him here by showing his work. I'm sure someone will do the same for me. ("Ack! Phil's resistance cell has been blow'd up! So, check out Phil's computer art pieces here.....")

Links N' Things I should be studying more:

New Wired is out. Cover stories on hybrids happens to be out. Bruce Sterling also blogs and offers running commentary on Lebanese bombing and how the US is getting dumber, even features a Red State slam against Alabama. Big news there...

Our Media is up and running and not very interesting, yet. Potentially, though, it could be very very interesting. I've checked out some of the 8 music vids--not in favor very much from music channels these days--and I enjoyed the one tune from the ex Throwing Muses Kristen Hersh.(B-) There's also a related story in Wired about a band using P2P to distribute their video, even features a slam against Launch, which, with current memory, should have every video ever made but doesn't.

The Democracy Lie by Juan Cole
Draft Resistance Dot Org
How To Turn Your Red State Blue (Short version: Look at the Mormons and canvassing works.)
New issue of Neo Files Has Been Out Awhile

Both books by my Cyborg Democracy pals are recommended by Scientific American. How's that Morrisey tune go...Don't you hate it when your friends become successful? And out of a jealous raging spite, I'm permalinking Ramez Naam. His book is called "More Than Human: Embracing the Promise of Biological Enhancement." Not to be confused with this excellent Theodore Sturgeon graphic novel, which I used to own, until I gave it away like an idiot...



Monday, January 31, 2005

(Pgh. Tech) Around the Internets: Folks Blast the MC anti-global warming book, More on scary evolutionary computing and man made chimeras are Kewl...



There have been justifiably rough reviews of Michael Crichton's new anti-global warming book. You can read this from the New York Times or you can read this critique from the Brookings Institute (where Crichton spoke) and Chris Mooney regularly picks on him on because its good clean fun.

Interesting New Tech Column That I'll Be Permalinking (Check out his interview with the creator of an open source TIVO-like product.)

Artificial Lifeforms that Evolve

Article on Computerized Home Fabs (From Gravity Lens who complained about the cliches of "It's soooo science fictional...")


Animal Hybrids, Which I'm Perfectly Comfortable With. As I've written in the past, I have always fancied a Bjork/doe chimera, which would no doubt die because of unbearable cuteness...




Item: I left this note at Chuck Penn's blog:

Keep in mind that Harry's Pro Life. And guess what? Harry lost that vote that put a far right winger onto the court. I'm sure he feels terrible about that. Kos, of course, has been quick to point out that Harry being pro life didn't matter very much. Of course, now you wonder if it kinda did. I'm sure the GOP theocrat base is thrilled. Those of us in Harry's base who remember what the mob did to Piggy in "Lord of the Flies" can see our beaten, bespectacled futures...Of course, Kos has some nice things to say about the "viable" candidate Bob Casey Jr., who got out in front on the pro Alito line...what exactly do I win with Casey jr? Inform me again. I'd like to know. Any reform he got throught the GOP congress would likely be overturned by the Alito court so...

Philip Shropshire

PS: I still think following my white paper is your best shot. But it has to be done in both Philly and me, you'll be the only one doing it.

PPS: I sometimes wonder if Kos isn't a closet pro lifer. Remember, he's from El Salvador, where Archbishop Romero got gunned down. Down there the Catholic Clergy did some honorable things and they didn't molest anyone apparently...I sometimes wonder...


Jan. 31

Item: I got this from a number of voting rights groups. I support their efforts today but shouldn't Ed Rendell, a Democrat who needs poor and black voters to win, veto such a bill (?)..Oh wait, this is the Democratic Governor  who supports Alito and gave us this dynamic Republican proxy  Bob Casey Jr. for the DNC Senate Primary. I see now. Nevermind. That's just asking too much that the  Washington Generals Party fight for the rights of  its base. What was I thinking? More here from 2 Political Junkies. By the way, if the county is looking for a savior I strongly suggest Vote Pad. Press release here:

Urgent! Calls needed now!

The Protect Our Vote Coalition has learned that the Anti-Voting Rights Act (HB 1318) is on the calendar and may be voted on as early as Tuesday 1/31.

Last year, your activism helped fend off provisions of this legislation that would have imposed an ID requirement on Pennsylvania voters and rolled back the voting rights of former felons. But now the Pennsylvania House of Representatives is rumored to be trying to revive them.

It is imperative that you call your legislators now and tell them that if HB 1318 includes restrictive voter identification requirements and rolls back the voting rights of former felons they must oppose the bill!

TELL YOUR REPRESENTATIVE TO VOTE NO ON HB 1318. You can look up your representative's phone number at See below for a list of House of Representative Rules Committee Members

Check out the voting record below to see if your representative voted NO against this Bill the last time it was in the House. You might be surprised. Call them and urge them to Vote No this time and thank those who already Voted No and make sure they are voting NO again.

Use the talking points below to aid your discussion with your legislator:

Get on the bus! We need to stop this now. We have a plan and we need your help.

On the morning of Wednesday, February 1, buses will carry you and other activists from Philadelphia and Pittsburgh to the State Capitol in Harrisburg.

If you can get to the Capitol on your own, meet us in the East Rotunda between 9:00 and 10:00 AM. Please email to let us know you're coming.

The day will begin with a training on the bus about HB 1318. From 9:00-1:00, you'll visit legislators' offices. (If you're driving to Harrisburg on your own, we'll train you when you arrive.) At 1:00, meet for a brown-bag lunch and a meet-and-greet with legislators who support our work. (Please bring lunch or money to buy lunch. Lunches can be supplied for those of limited resources).

Buses from Philadelphia will leave at 7:30 AM from Project H.O.M.E., 1515 Fairmont Ave., and return at 5:00 PM.
To RSVP, call Jennine Miller, (215) 232-7272, ext. 3042.

Buses will leave at 5:30 AM from The Hill House, 1835 Centre Ave. in the Hill District
At 6 AM from Allegheny County ACORN, 5907 Penn Ave. in East Liberty.
To RSVP, call Celeste Taylor, (412) 628-7867.

The Protect Our Vote and Stop House Bill 1318 campaign is co-sponsored by AARP Pennsylvania, ACLU Pennsylvania, ACORN Pennsylvania, ActiVote America, Advancement Project, Bike for Democracy, B-PEP (Black Political Empowerment Project), Center for Civic Participation, Congreso De Latinos Unidos, Committee of Seventy, Common Cause of Pennsylvania, Everybody VOTE, Ex-Offenders Association of PA, Housing Alliance of Pennsylvania, Just Harvest, Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, League of Young Voters, League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania, Mental Health Association of Southeastern Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania Alliance for Retired Americans, Pennsylvania Council of Churches, PA Voters Coalition, People For the American Way, PA Voter Coalition, Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia, Project H.O.M.E., Project VOTE, Resources for Human Development, Roots of Promise/a project of The Thomas Merton Center, SEPA Americans for Democratic Action, Service Employees International Union Pennsylvania State Council, Southwestern PA Alliance of HUD Tenants, UNITE HERE, Vote for Homes!, VotePA, X-Offenders for Community Empowerment, WomenVote PA/Women's Law Project, and other organizations. (Contact or 215-232-7272 to add your organization and get involved with the campaign to protect our vote and stop HB 1318.)

Jan. 16

Item: So, anyway, I've made the argument that the seven or eight Jewish democratic senators have essentially killed the filibuster (See Feinstein refusal to filibuster Alito). I think the argument I've made (somewhat conspiratorial but makes sense on the face of it) is that Jewish reps have traded the Democratic Party base for Israel. I might note that a lot of these same politicians are also DLC members--the calling card for sellout Democrats. I think this is why the Democratic Party doesn't act or even faintly resemble an opposition party. If this is true, then we have to rethink--and by "we" I mean people who are progressive and don't think using American troops to fight a proxy war for Israel is a good thing (especially for Israel and Jews)--participation and goals within the DNC. I find this an extremely uncomfortable argument to make and get no joy out of it. But that's what the Internets are for.

A long time ago, when it hadn't even occurred to me that being against the war was anti Israel or anti Semitic, I got some fan mail over at another blog that I used to write for called Warblogger Watch. I answered him this way:

(pic of Allen Ginsberg)

Hadda get ridda Saddam with a bomb!
Saddam's still there building a bomb!
Saddam's still there building a bomb!
Saddam's still there building a bomb!
Saddam's still there building a bomb!

Well, I just wanted to post this in response to Fascist Nazi Mark Konrad, who is one of the few people who at least proudly owns up to the title. I was amused by the fascist nazi's defense over at Dr. Weevil—a defense which actually made sense but more on that later--but be warned: I’m not a white European, at least not mostly. In fact, it could be stated plainly that you would find my ethnicity as appalling as that of the Jews that you hate so much. I also want to state this: As an American writer—at war with GOP Jingoists and Science Racists and Despicable Dogs—that I’m not only inspired and enlightened by the work of Allen Ginsberg, but: Joe Haldeman, Robert Silverberg, Woody Allen, Harlan Ellison, Marv Wolfman, Stan Lee, Steve Gerber, Noam Chomsky, Albert Einstein, Stephen Speilberg, Cory Doctorow, Cyril Kornbluth, Isaac Asimov, William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, Paul Auster, Robert Bloch, Jules Feiffer, David Mamet, Norman Mailer, Susan Sontag, Darren Aronofsky, J.D. Sallinger, Art Spiegelman, Don Byron, Lenny Kravitz, Stan Getz, Avishai Cohen, Bob Dylan, Eugene Levy, Winona Ryder, Buck Henry, Mort Sahl, Jerry Seinfeld and last, but not least, local Pittsburgh writer Mike Chabon. I might note, that it’s a certainty that not all of these people—the ones who are alive—may agree with what is written at American Samizdat or here, especially about Israel. But the disagreements should be based on argument, not ethnicity. Furthermore: all our lives would be the lesser without their bright, gleaming lights.

Oh, by the way, Mark, assuming that you're real and not some kind of counterprop plant, I highly endorse Gene Expression for your viewing pleasure. Post often. They're your kind of people, all dressed up for the future

Item: What good are the Democrats if they can’t filibuster Alito? If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times, literally—and I mean that—I thought the Ralph Nader runs were big mistakes but I know why he ran. Let’s review why he ran: He said that there was no major difference between the major parties. I haven’t seen one filibuster yet. Not a one. I’d like at least one. Of course, dipping into my conspiracy theory bag, what if the Jewish Democratic Senators have sold out the party in order to support the proxy war for Israel? The truth of the matter is that you can’t have a filibuster in the senate without Jewish senators. I just see the deal in the back of my mind: You want us to fight a proxy war for Israel in order to stop even the hint of hostile Mid East powers getting the bomb?— 

            --By the way, I don’t think that’s a minor reason. What would you do for your tribe? Would you kill 58 million Iranians and 20 million Iraqis to possibly save 3 million of your tribe…I think the math is bad but what if it’s your tribe…?-- 

--Well, here’s what we want: We want to overturn the New Deal and annex the oil fields and no we don’t care if that sets the stage for World War 3 or yet a very silly conflict over imaginary gods that will cost the lives of millions…One other note: I don’t think this helps Israel or creates safety for the Jewish people. (I don’t want to live like the Israelis.) And yes there are Jewish people who agree with this assessment. I just think that’s the deal and its being played out everyday. And to take us back to the Nader position there are lots of Democrats who don’t mind those outcomes. 

Item: And what of Arlen? Here’s a tale of what I’m finding to be very disturbing about Pennsylvania: I think the leaders of labor in this state are pro life. (And, of course, if you buy into the argument what more important issue can there be?) That would mean, in practice, that you support the Republican Party, whether it’s Arlen or creating a situation where there are two pro life candidates vying for the office. That usually works out for the Republicans. I suppose I should hope that Atrios is right and that Arlen doesn’t want to affirm the man who would overturn Roe, but I keep thinking that deal is in place… 


Dec. 29

Item: Bev Harris, the woman behind the hack of Diebold in Florida, tells us some disturbing things about what's happening here in Pennsylvania. Our old friend Mike Shamos, introduced to us by Kathy Dopp, seems to be playing a helpful role in advising our Sec. of State, who I think is a democrat, on which machines to buy. Dopp informed us that Mike thinks its okay if voting machines return false results, if I understood her correctly. Bev makes the suggestion that Mike Shamos shouldn't be advising the state. I agree.

Item: VotePa is the official statewide resource for your voting paranoia needs.

Item: Bradblog roundup of all the voting news this year.

Item: Variations on a theme.

and this Tony Auth editorial:



#1 Bush Administration Moves to Eliminate Open Government

#2 Media Coverage Fails on Iraq: Fallujah and the Civilian Deathtoll

#3 Another Year of Distorted Election Coverage

#4 Surveillance Society Quietly Moves In

#5 U.S. Uses Tsunami to Military Advantage in Southeast Asia

#6 The Real Oil for Food Scam

#7 Journalists Face Unprecedented Dangers to Life and Livelihood

#8 Iraqi Farmers Threatened By Bremer’s Mandates

#9 Iran’s New Oil Trade System Challenges U.S. Currency

#10 Mountaintop Removal Threatens Ecosystem and Economy

#11 Universal Mental Screening Program Usurps Parental Rights

#12 Military in Iraq Contracts Human Rights Violators

#13 Rich Countries Fail to Live up to Global Pledges

#14 Corporations Win Big on Tort Reform, Justice Suffers

#15 Conservative Plan to Override Academic Freedom in the Classroom

#16 U.S. Plans for Hemispheric Integration Include Canada

#17 U.S. Uses South American Military Bases to Expand Control of the Region

#18 Little Known Stock Fraud Could Weaken U.S. Economy

#19 Child Wards of the State Used in AIDS Experiments

#20 American Indians Sue for Resources; Compensation Provided to Others

#21 New Immigration Plan Favors Business Over People

#22 Nanotechnology Offers Exciting Possibilities But Health Effects Need Scrutiny

#23 Plight of Palestinian Child Detainees Highlights Global Problem

#24 Ethiopian Indigenous Victims of Corporate and Government Resource Aspirations

#25 Homeland Security Was Designed to Fail


(Pic from Indy Media)

No taserin' at last Saturday's demonstration against military recruiting. But I see that there were donuts, the nemesis of overzealous police officers everywhere. Get news and photos here.

Conscience Pittsburgh, a group of local Pittsburghers who oppose the Iraqi war and probably all meaningless wars for that matter, testified in front of the Pittsburgh School Board last night. Their very honorable goal is to request a presence in the public schools so they can tell kids that enlisting in the army probably means a quick death. I couldn't find a story about it at either of my local dailies. So, here's some breaking news.

(Aside from the Daily Kos: "I wouldn't be half the person I am today without my military service. I used to always say I'd want my children to follow in my footsteps. But that was before we made a habit of unprovoked wars of aggression. The best way to talk parents into letting their children join the service? Stop using them as cannon fodder in unecessary wars waged for political expediancy. You see, in wars like Bush's, the bodybags don't seem worth the sacrifice to your average parent.

But hey, if the Army and Marines want a heck of a PR score to encourage parents to sacrifice their children, here's how to do it. It's a guaranteed winner:

Have the Bushes -- all of them with military-aged children and grandchildren -- ship their kids off to basic training."  Let's all hold our breath.)

Or, according to the news from their website

Upcoming events:

The April 18 public hearing of the Pittsburgh Public Schools was highly successful. Scilla Wahrhaftig, DeShauna Ponton, Tim Vining, Celeste Taylor, Tim Vining, Jon Robison, and others spoke in favor of getting counter-recruitment literature into schools and opt-out forms into the hands of parents. And board members Mark Brantley and Randall Taylor expressed interest in helping making this happen. So now it's up to us to see this through.

The next meeting of the Pittsburgh Public Schools board is the Agenda Review Tuesday, April 19, at 6 pm. The meeting is open to the public. Mark Brantley said that he will raise the issue of getting counter-recruitment literature into schools at the meeting. So please, if you possibly can, come and give him your support. We won't have an opportunity to speak at the meeting, but we can attend and make this happen.

If you can't come to the April 19 meeting, please come to the Legislative Session on Wednesday April 27 at 7:30 pm. We need to continue to show our concern about this issue and encourage the Board to act.

Both of these meetings will be in the board room. Ask the guard at the front desk and he will direct you. The address is 341 South Bellefield Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15213.

The next meeting of Conscience will be Monday, May 2 at 7 p.m. at The Quiet Storm . Counter-recruitment will be a major topic of the meeting.

You may be interested in this summary of the Pittsburgh Regional Forum and Speak Out on the Draft,
Conscientious Objection and Stop Loss

Conscience is creating a frequently-asked questions area. Here are answers to frequently-asked questions about the Draft and Conscientious Objection. If you would like to contribute relevant FAQs, please contact Conscience. It would be great to get FAQs for parents and students about counter-recruitment, for example.

And related anti draft links:

American Friends Service Committee
Catholics and Conscientious Objection
Center on Conscience & War
Central Committee for Conscientious Objectors
Daily Draft Dispatch
Draft Freedom Org
Episcopal Church Peace Ministries
Getting Out of the Delayed Entry Program
GI Rights Hotline
High School Students Opt-Out from Military Recruiters
Parents Against the Draft


Oh my God. I'm going to actually break some national news, or at least news you won't see in other media outlets. This is a first for the paper I think. I hope it's not the last.

Here goes: Pacifica announces its Purple Strategy.

The Path to Success in 2005-2006

The events of the next two years will be critical. We at     Pacifica pledge to:

  Empower Community Voices in 2005-2006!
Take Action Today, Please!

We produce our Pacifica programs with a small fraction of the money the corporate media spends— and wastes—every day. Please help with a generoerous tax-deductible donation. Your $500, $250, $100 or $75 sent to Pacifica—today—will enable us to do what we need to do in these criticaical years.

Our goal: one million dollars. Don't delay — donate on-line at

You can rely on Pacifica as your source for alternative information and news.

Make a difference now!

"Race, sex and class still matter."


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Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Around the Internets: Kurt Nimmo Sez Iran is Next and Different Takes on the Iraqi Elections


AROUND THE INTERNETS (Pittsburgh Progressive)

Kurt Nimmo says the Fix is in Concerning Iran

Some Crazy People Think Iraq Vote not As Kewl As it Looks. Juan Cole, the best for my money and remember he originally supported the invasion so he's not automatic for the leftist cause, has his well articulated doubts. Raed thinks the government used the monthly food rationing cards to bribe the vote. Christian Parenti thinks there could be a backlash if Shiite majority votes and then gets no say...Isn't that the norm? I saw what happened in Ohio. Robert Fisk, who's in Iraq risking his life unlike certain pinhead Instapundits I know and their local Pittsburgh clones, says that folks voted so they can tell the US to get the Hell Out. I agree with Ted Kennedy that that would be proof of self determination and independence if they asked that. By the way, if you're not aware of it, Democracy Now is easily one of the best if not the best news program in the United States. And when they accuse Democracy Now of being "left" media I can agree with them. Also check out Brit leader Jack Galloway, in case American politicians are wondering what an "opposition" is supposed to sound like:

GEORGE GALLOWAY: They're a farce. They're rigged. An election held under foreign military occupation is always, by definition, utterly flawed. But one which is held in the kind of conditions in which this one is being held is flawed beyond redemption. The facts are that it is simply impossible to hold an election when there is a full-scale war going on between the occupying armies and the resistance forces. The Sunni Muslim population, which if you add the Sunni Kurds and the Sunni Arabs together, is some 40% of the population, are deeply anxious about the way in which the occupying forces are deliberately trying to divide the country along confessional lines. The Sunni Arab population has boycotted the election almost in their entirety. The Iraqis living outside for whom security was not an issue, three quarters of them have voted with their feet and boycotted the election. Less than a quarter of the eligible voters have registered to vote and fewer still have cast their votes. So, this is a festival, a farce that's been held to validate the American-British invasion and occupation of Iraq. But it will not validate it, neither in the eyes of the world opinion, nor, more importantly, in the eyes of those Iraqis who are resisting the foreign occupation and the war will go on, I'm sorry to say.

When I was arguing for embryonic stem cell research over at Ales Rarus the topic came up about fascism and religion. The crazy religious people over at Ales (He wants to ban contraception. God told him too...) made the argument that fascism was a distinctly secular enterprise. I thought they were wrong. And it's not just the argument presented by Fromme in "Escape from Freedom", it's the fact that both religion and fascism both share a kind of love for the irrational. They're fundamentally anti-reason. You can invade Poland or France or Iraq and Iran and nothing bad will come of it. Likewise, your enemies will be thrown into an eternal pit of hellfire, something a loving god would do of course.

I came upon this quote over at a weekly Daily Kos piece called the
"The Week in Fascism" that supports my take. Mussolini: He likes religion.

"The Fascist conception of life is a religious one, in which man is viewed in his immanent relation to a higher law, endowed with an objective will transcending the individual and raising him to conscious membership of a spiritual society. "Those who perceive nothing beyond opportunistic considerations in the religious policy of the Fascist regime fail to realize that Fascism is not only a system of government but also and above all a system of thought.
In the Fascist conception of history, man is man only by virtue of the spiritual process to which he contributes as a member of the family, the social group, the nation, and in function of history to which all nations bring their contribution. Hence the great value of tradition in records, in language, in customs, in the rules of social life."

Benito Mussolini
The Doctrine of Fascism, (1932).

On a related note, Robert Kennedy, who might run, calls this administration the "F" word....


Pittsburgh Progressive 1-6-05

Your Fire, Car Wreck And/or Tsunami/Natural Disaster Story


There was a car wreck, fire and possibly a tsunami in your town today.

People were hurt, burned beyond recognition or swept out into an unforgiving sea in no particular order. Imagine me sticking a microphone into their faces and asking them how they feel. They will say something like "Ouch. The twisting cacophony of metal caused me some discomfort...that and losing my six kids" or "Yowtch. That fire sure was painful. We lost everything, including possibly the cat, or something" or "Glub glub. Nearly drowned. Thank God the supermodel survived".

These kinds of stories, interesting though they may be after 7000 versions (plus murder and petty theft) on your local television news, serve primarily as a distraction. Please study these rules for further explanation and this website for the Bigger Picture.

Meanwhile, there's an excellent possibility that your presidential election was stolen and that aside from that there's a continuous effort to privatize your public institutions and to get you to pay for rights and things that you used to expect for free, perhaps because you thought you lived in a decent country. You were wrong. You should discard a corporate media that doesn't tell you this every day, every hour, every moment.




Pittsburgh Progressive 01-01-05

HAPPY NEW YEAR. YOUR ELECTION MAY HAVE BEEN STOLEN. TALK AMONGST YOURSELVES: I spent midnight watching a Siouxsie Sioux and the Banshees live show on VH1-Classic--a station that's extremely disappointing at times but not last evening--and was surprised by how much they  rocked. Killer guitar riffs throughout every tune. I thought I was at a Motorhead concert or something. Her drummer and I think husband was just an incredible player. Every beat sounded triumphal and anthemic. Never saw a guy use mallets like that. Most drummers just live on their hi-hats. You could take those beats to war. Only downside: A woman pushing 50 doesn't have to take off her top. Besides, with her money she can pay to look mid 30s forever. Spend it. Still a great set though...

Later on in the day, without the hint of even an appropriate transition, still watching TV (The sad man's family...) I caught up with my old friend Jerry Starr on CSpan, who's been a one man lobbyist machine for a fair and decent public television. I ran into him when I wrote a media watch column for In Pittsburgh back in the early 90s. I made the argument then (1995 I think) that the net would be our salvation because the Conservative Washington DC players would never allow a progressive public media to emerge, or even an American BBC--I once begged George Soros to create such a thing using his own trust fund. No word yet and no checks yet for your humble site. Jerry still hasn't gotten decent public television but he does have a website. He also promotes a number of shows that you can only see on the Internet, at least here in Pittsburgh. I think I won that point. See the links on the right if you're wondering what a progressive media would truly look and sound like.

This is also kind of what this paper aspires to be, a real alternative to the corporate press. And I don't mean alternative in that I can say "fuck" and post pictures of nude women--which I enjoy certainly. I mean alternative in the sense that I can say that the system is fucked up. It's not fair. It's not even close. You should be thinking about not ever joining the military--either voluntarily and certainly not by a forced draft. The Bush administration is evil enough to steal the election. They've already done it once. You need to respond by getting involved politically and you should measure your every action, your every purchase, by how you can achieve the current regime's overthrow. And with that, I will end my writing for the day and go spend some time with my real family.

posted by Philip Shropshire at 2:16 PM 0 comments

Perhaps you've seen this flag. I think the man behind it is probably joking.

On the other hand, I sincerely hope that the people behind Move On California are quite serious. I support them. There has to be a more vigorous way to show our dissent other than voting for Democrats who won't even fight for our votes. I can't think of anything more serious than secession. I might add that I'm willing to fight and die for things I actually believe in, as opposed to slaughtering Iraqi civilians for fossil fuels. It's aggressive. And it puts the right on the defensive. To use the crudely inappropriate football metaphor that our Moron in Chief uses to describe the War on Terror, we get to take it to them. We get to ask what's so great about the United States? You clearly don't give a fuck about us. We don't even have basic healthcare. We get to say that if you criminalize stem cell research or a woman's right to choose, then we're out of here. I've emailed those Move On folks and I'm not clear if they've thought of the ballot initiative. I guess there's a question of legality and this is where you would need some leadership with some balls that would say: "You just try and stop us from taking this vote and you'll have a civil war on your hands." And for some strange reason I could imagine Arnold mouthing those words. Offer him a shot at being the King of Cascadia or something, or vote someone in who has the guts to move for radical change. Time it for the 2006 Gubernatorial elections. Condition it's adoption based on the choice issue or approval of transparency in the voting process.

Again, I'm not sure where the MoveOn folks are at in terms of a constitution or the ballot initiative. But, again borrowing from Oliver Willis' Brand Democrat theme, here's how you could brand progressive change.

posted by Philip Shropshire at 6:23 AM Comments (5)







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