Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Bush is still Looking out for the Saudis

by Jay Allbritton
There are plenty of good reasons not to drill in ANWR and only one real reason the President wants to--work for his buddies' companies.

From Reuters:
Opening ANWR could have made current prices worse because Saudi Arabia may have delayed increasing its oil production capacity, making world supplies tighter and prices higher.

"Since there is a worldwide market for oil, increases in production in one place (like ANWR) could be offset by decreases in production someplace else to keep the prices high," CAP's Weiss said.

(more)
Open up ANWR and Saudi Arabia makes the same money for less oil. Guess who's pressing this issue. The House of Bush or the House of Saud? If you said there is no difference, you win the showcase showdown.

UPDATE: Keith Olbermann fact checked the President's speech for h im, and it turns out there were a few errors.

Albert Hoffman (1906--2008)

by Hector Diego


Hoffman had a very distinguished career, besides inventing LSD by accident. He also synthesized psilocybin, and identified the active compound of other entheogens.

LSD, no doubt, can be a very dangerous substance. However, going mountain climbing is also quite dangerous and we do not outlaw it. I submit that the dangerous aspect of LSD was used as an excuse to outlaw it by people who wanted to maintain the status quo--fall in line, don't ask questions.

That LSD even exists with its potential for experiencing heaven and hell transcends individual experiences with it. It points to something discovered by science, but far greater than science. Our own consciousness is greater than science.

Hoffman always recommended that the drug be legal for research purposes, and for use by mature, educated adults. He was disturbed that the substance was used irresponsibly.

I'll never take the stuff again, but I feel great respect for the passing of Dr. Albert Hoffman, age 102.

More Horrendous Bovine Suffering

by Hector Diego

Don't laugh. In future lives, we might be the cows, and
they might be the "humans".

Beef suppliers have been cited for humane violations.

So what else is new? When have slaughterhouses in the USA ever really cared about the pain and suffering of the animals they "render"? Unless you have a government inspector present at all times, is it really believable that the slaughterhouse people will pay close attention to the regulations?

Did you know that quite often, cows and bulls are strung up by their feet and have their hides removed WHILE THEY ARE STILL ALIVE? It only makes sense that this should be so, because the profit margin demands timeliness, not humane dying conditions.

God is watching.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The Beatles Goofing Around At Abbey Road

by Hector Diego

Provocative Obama Clip

by Hector Diego

Plastic Dependence

by Jay Allbritton
The Business Shrink has a post up about American and worldwide consumption of plastic bags and bottled water, which are helping to spike the cost of oil.

Here's a graph:As for the plastic bags:
Plastic bags have become commonplace all over the world for their ease of production, cheapness compared to paper bags at 2 cents a plastic bag and 4 to 6 cents for paper bags. The plastic bags are also light weight for transporting. Plastic bags take oil, just like plastic bottles to produce. Currently the U.S. consumes 100 billion plastic shopping bags in a year and worldwide consumption is estimated to be from 500 billion to 1 trillion plastic bags a year. That is roughly 1 million plastic bags a minute being consumed and less than 1% is recycled. The oil cost? With the 100 billion bags consumed in America it takes 12 million barrels of oil a year. Taking that figure and applying it to worldwide consumption you come up with a figure around 60 million - 120 million barrels of oil a year to produce plastic bags.
And of course, we dump them in the Pacific Ocean, where they are forming a new continent.

Famous Vegetarians

by Hector Diego


Half of the folks shown here are questionable as vegetarians. Probably they flirted with the innocent diet for awhile, and someone reported it, and here they are.

But it is still an impressive list even if only half of them qualify as innocent.

Do we need examples to do the right thing?

Not really. Just do it.

Become innocent.

Simon And Garfunkel, Scarborough Fair

by Hector Diego


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Hey Jude

by Hector Diego


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Monday, April 28, 2008

John Lennon, Love

by Hector Diego


1970.

Paul McCartney, Maybe I'm Amazed

by Hector Diego


1970.

George Harrison, Run So Far

by Hector Diego


"Run So Far" is from Harrison's posthumous album, Brainwashed.

George Harrison Live, Awaiting On You All

by Hector Diego


You don't need no passport
And you don't need no visas
You don't need to designate or to emigrate
Before you can see Jesus
If you open up your heart
You'll see he's right there
Always was and will be

George Harrison, Run Of The Mill

by Hector Diego


It's a demo. I like it better than the album version. Beautiful.

Jenny Lewis on the Couch

by Jay Allbritton
...playing "Rise Up With Fists!"

Sunday, April 27, 2008

The Good That Won't Come Out

by Jay Allbritton
Here's Rilo Kiley at their post-grunge zenith in Baltimore back in 2002. Now they're a bit more post-glam/neo-emo or pop. I love it all, but this was the best of the best.

Obama, The Tofu Messiah

by Hector Diego

Tofu, the other white meat.

Michael Savage, right-wing radio talk show host, has labeled Barack Obama "the Tofu Messiah". In Savage's perverted mind, only idiots, pansies, and "elitists" eat tofu.

So who does Hillary appeal to, mainly? People that never heard of tofu, and stick their head in the sand along with their religion and their guns?

Hillary also attracts a fair number of educated women, who complain that Obama does not have enough experience to be President. Now, do you suppose these women would be saying that if Hillary were not running?

Of course not. They are not being honest with themselves.

Or maybe, like Michael Savage, they just don't like tofu. They cannot claim to be alternative, for other reasons too. They want the same old

Same

Old. Just so long as it is a woman.

This is not truly feminism, it is a perversion of feminism.

Rilo Kiley, Glendora

by Hector Diego


Well, here it is, folks. Jenny Lewis always refuses to perform "Glendora" at Rilo Kiley shows. I wonder why.

Are we simply her side bet? I can accept that...just like Jenny does in...

Glendora!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Allen Ginsberg And Bob Dylan Discuss Graves

by Hector Diego

The History Of Gypsy Laddie

by Hector Diego

Johnny Cash, San Quentin

by Hector Diego


You gotta love The Man In Black.

American Artist Burl Ives, Long Black Veil

by Hector Diego


Burl Ives (1909-1995) was blacklisted as a communist. He hung out with Woody Guthrie, so that makes sense.

It was artists like Ives, Guthrie, Leadbetter, and Seeger that inspired Dylan, and influenced the Viet Nam era anti-war movement.

The Seekers, A World Of Our Own

by Hector Diego


The Seekers are from Australia.

John Denver, Take Me Home, Country Roads

by Hector Diego


There is no place on God's earth more stunningly beautiful than West Virginia.

John Lennon Live, Instant Karma

by Hector Diego


It's up to you.

Yeah, you.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Indian baby born with four eyes, two mouths, and two faces

by Hector Diego


If she lives very long at all, she should have a very interesting life.

Demonic Animal Slaughter

by Hector Diego


Come on now, even if you eat chickens, you don't approve of the stuff they are doing in this video, do you? The video get more clear after about 30 seconds.

They throw the chickens against the wall, for fun.

That's what you are eating.

Win Ben Stein's Money... In Court

by Jay Allbritton
Yoko Ono is suing Ben Stein over his use of the song "Imagine" in his crockumentary about Intelligent Design.

The thought of that turd Stein putting his slimy paws on Lennon's work makes me want to hurl.

Here's the song in it's proper context:

The Nazis Are Running America

by Hector Diego

State Flag of Texas.

I say the Nazis are running America because people are not thinking--that's an indication that a culture of laziness has taken hold.

For instance, people are too lazy to think long and hard about what is happening with the children in Texas. I'm not complaining (here, at least) about the actions taken by Texas that were legal. The illegal things they have done are enough to make a thinking person cringe.

The small children--of parents not charged with (or even, in most cases, suspected of any crime)--are taken away from their parents, examined medically without their parent's presence, and then put into foster "care".

Foster care is a euphemism, is it not?

Now, Texas does have a strong case to make that a 12 year old getting pregnant by a 50 year old is child abuse.

But, why isn't taking away young children from their mothers and placed in foster care not

CHILD ABUSE?

You tell me. I'm waiting to hear it. I'm waiting to hear why two wrongs make a right.

The Nazis used similar tactics--mixing truth with untruth so that people could point and say, "Jews have always been money lenders" (what this has to do with anything, we're neither saying nor asking).

Now it's some teenagers married to dirty old men (what this has to do with the babies of 30 year old mothers--married at the legal age--we are neither saying nor asking).

Texas, like the Nazis, knew they could get away with this because social liberals will put women's rights before everything else (including babies' rights) and social conservatives will put monogamy before everything else (including babies' rights).

No? Have I nailed it, or not?

"The state has confiscated all cellphones from the occupants of its two concentration camps in San Angelo, even those of the women who are supposedly there "voluntarily." The primary reason for this is to hamper the flow of information to the outside world about the abominable conditions existing inside the camps. Many children are reportedly sick and terrorized, packed like cattle into the two concentration camps. The mothers have written a desperate letter to Governor Rick Perry pleading for help. They don't realize that an FLDS mother sending a letter to Rick Perry pleading for help is the same as a Jewish mother sending a letter for help to Adolph Hitler during the holacaust. Don't expect much humanitarian sympathy from der Fuhrer of Texas."

Now, in the quotation above, it says that many children are reportedly sick and terrorized. As yet we have no proof that the kids are sick, so we can set that aside for the moment. However, no proof is needed that the kids are terrorized.

Right?

If you don't agree that that the kids are terrorized, please leave a comment. That should be interesting.

This is why I am neither a liberal or a conservative, because both of these factions are in support of the Texas thing. Who needs Nazis when we have Democrats and Republicans?

OK, OK, most of these people aren't Nazis (although the CPS of Texas should be certified). But most of the German people weren't Nazis either, and their national psyche is still squirming in the light of what they did not think of, did not protest until it was too late.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Rilo Kiley in Seattle

by Jay Allbritton
The kids are all right and back on tour. Catch them if you can (tour listings here). Unfortunately, I can't.

Here's "Breakin' Up" from Seattle on Saturday. For full Walrus Speaks coverage of the tour, keep it tuned right here.

Anatomy of a Swiftboating--Has Obama Crossed the Bubba Threshold?

by Jay Allbritton
If John Kerry couldn't get through the swiftboat blockade, what chance does Barack Obama have?

I think he's going to smash right through that pathetic barricade, but perhaps there's room for debate.

Smearing is an art form. There are guidelines to constructing a good smear. Simplicity is crucial. These people cast doubt on Kerry's war record. The question handed to the voters by Bush's campaign and the 527s was how can this windsurfing liberal fairy be a war hero?

It's stupid, but it worked because it was simple. People put little purple heart band-aides on their faces and laughed it up.

Let's look at another swiftboating. Bill Clinton faced a sustained nine years straight of swiftboating, before anyone knew what that word meant. The entire right wing threw several kitchen sinks and porch awnings at him. At different points he was a murderer and a "pussy" or a "fag". He was a pacifist who wouldn't stand up for America and then later he was a butcher of women and children all over Bosnia and the Sudan. There were too many strands and many of them contradicted each other leaving nothing but a lump of politically motivated hatred and the voters saw it for what it was.

Andrew Sullivan shows how complicated and contradictory the various smears of Obama have become:
Is Obama a Muslim? Does it matter any more? We are in world of McTruthyism. In that world, Obama is an atheist, a Muslim, a black liberation theologian and a Marxist. Since the truth is irrelevant, they can all be true!
How deep we are into the realm of McTruthysim is a variable that I can not discern. I think we're on the way out of the desert of the un-freaking-real, but cultural vertigo is difficult to shake.

Still, I pretty well convinced that the Obama smears have already crossed what I call the Bubba Threshold of cognitive dissonance. The tipping point may have been the ABC debate. We'll see.

Satire: The Borowitz Report: Democratic Race too Mean Says Swiftboat Veterans.

Senator Chafee Recounts Congressional Acquiescence

by Jay Allbritton
Former Senator Lincoln Chafee has a book out, and unlike most political insider tell-alls, this is one I think I would quite like to read.

From NPR's excerpt of Lincoln Chafee's book:
In steady, quiet tones, the Vice President-elect laid out a shockingly divisive political agenda for the new Bush administration, glossing over nearly every pledge the Republican ticket had made to the American voter. President-elect Bush had promised that healing, but now we moderate Republicans were hearing Richard Cheney articulate the real agenda: A clashist approach on every issue, big and small, and any attempt at consensus would be a sign of weakness. We would seek confrontation on every front. He said nothing about education or the environment or health care; it was all about these new issues that were rarely, if ever, touted in the campaign. The new administration would divide Americans into red and blue, and divide nations into those who stand with us or against us. I knew that what the Vice President-elect was saying would rip the closely divided Congress apart. We moderates had often voted with President Clinton on things that powerful Republican constituencies didn't like: an increase in the minimum wage, a patients' bill of rights, and campaign finance reform. Mr. Cheney knew this, but he ticked off the issues at the top of his agenda and did it fearlessly. It made no difference to him that we were potential adversaries; he was going down his to-do list and checking off Confrontation Number 1.

Senator Arlen Specter spoke first. As the most junior member, I would have my say last, if at all. I could hardly sit still as I waited to hear my respected friend wade into this outrageous manifesto.

And then, in a moment I can only describe as infuriating, Senator Specter took no leadership role in representing the moderate point of view. He acquiesced, and others followed his example.

(more)
Chafee was a decent Senator but he should have raised hell over this. He hides behind his juniority here, but I'm not buying it. Once again, too little, too late.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Can You Smell What Obama Is Cooking?

by Hector Diego


The Station Agent and I sincerely request the voters of Indiana to turn out for Barack Obama. We realize that women feel their time has come, that Obama talks like the intellectual that he is, and has never shot at a deer in his life.

Indiana women, please listen. Obama has modern, feminist values. And, can't you tell that he is more honest than Hillary?

Can't you smell what Obama is cooking?

Brother Sun, Sister Moon

by Hector Diego


A most excellent film.

Yusuf, Peace Train, Nobel Concert 2006

by Hector Diego

Cat Stevens Live, Peace Train

by Hector Diego


Out on the edge of darkness, there rides a Peace Train, oh Peace Train take this country, come take me home again.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Joan Baez, With God On Our Side

by Hector Diego


Surely one of the artistic and socially progressive highlights of the twentieth century.

1966.

And A Child Shall Lead Them...

by Hector Diego


Find out what happens when a baby gets the remote.

Monday, April 21, 2008

The Cowsills, Hair

by Hector Diego


Don't never have to cut it, 'cause it stops by itself.

Harry Smith's Old Weird America: Anthology of American Folk

by Hector Diego


Harry Smith, like the Lomax family, was concerned to preserve America's folk music heritage, and this preservation then became "a vehicle for social change."

The Brothers Four, Try To Remember

by Hector Diego


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Sunday, April 20, 2008

Elliott Smith Plays "Miss Misery" on Conan

by Jay Allbritton
Based on what I have read about Elliott Smith, this song's involvement with the movie Good Will Hunting and his subsequent Oscar nomination seemed to have ruined the song for him. Fame really bothered him. I think it was because he felt that people liked the song, but didn't know what he was really all about. "Miss Misery" would be requested at his shows and Smith would rarely play it. When he did, Most of the live recordings came out poorly. He performs quite well in this clip, which is one of the best live recordings of "Miss Misery," a song I really love. It's weird to think you might like a song more than the person who wrote and recorded it.

Know Your Factions

by Jay Allbritton
One of the reasons why the American people seem to lack a clear understanding of what's going on in Iraq is the misuse of accurate terminology for the factions fighting in Iraq by the Republicans and by the mainstream media. Any non-American, non-Iraqi Military fighters are labeled al-Qaida in Iraq. Much of the problem is laziness, and the rest of the problem is a more nefarious, intentional shell game meant to divert Americans from the truth.

Two of the main offenders are President Bush and John McCain. These two continually mistake al-Qaida, who are Sunnis, with Shi'ites from Iran and other Shi'ite factions in Iraq, and then expect everyone to believe that these are innocent mistakes.

Steven Benen at The Carpetbagger Report takes a look at the mysterious phenomenon in a post called, "Intellectual laziness and the 'al-Qaeda Shorthand'".

Jenny Lewis Extorts The Golden Girls

by Hector Diego


I don't know if even the Station Agent will be interested in this--it's Jenny as a child in an episode of The Golden Girls.

If you are not a Jenny Lewis fanatic, you will probably want to skip this one.

But fanatics should not miss it.

Rilo Kiley, Jenny You're Barely Alive

by Hector Diego


Somehow I have a feeling that Lewis is not speaking only for herself...



And it's all the treasures that shine in the street
As we drive right over them
And it's all the mornings we missed for sleep
As the sun glides over our apartment
And it's all the subtle change in landscape and business
Reminds you of your limited time
This time you'll listen to the movement of your body
How it keeps on despite you and it frightens you
Because you're barely alive

You're desperate in finding something else to please you
You've been searching your whole life
Something to mute, change, or just distract you
Something to put inside you to give the illusion of life
Because you've always been barely alive
Because you're barely alive
Because you're barely alive
You've always been barely alive
Have you not?

And the greatest escape that you ever did make
With your arms by your side, left it up to fate

And the coast that you've seen though you're watching them weekly
You've cursed all perfect days as you walked away
I can hear you say, "Jenny, you're barely alive"

The metal rods you put in your fucking jaw
To keep you from grinding your teeth every night

Because you're barely alive
You've always been barely alive
Because you're barely alive
Always been barely alive

Paul McCartney, Here Today

by Hector Diego


Paul's tribute to John.

Friday, April 18, 2008

The Party Of Lincoln Is Racist

by Hector Diego

His party does not deserve his association.

Republicans are proud of Abraham Lincoln, a Republican President, but 13 percent of these Republicans probably think he was a bum. Why do I say this?

Here is something I copied from the latest AP-Yahoo News Poll.

"Obama would be the first black president, and the survey detected some evidence of racial discomfort in voters' minds. It found that about 8 percent of whites would be uncomfortable voting for a black for president. It produced an estimate of about 13 percent of Republicans who would feel that way, but suggested very few if any Democrats would now be uncomfortable."

13 per cent of Tories, but very few Labor?

What does that tell you?

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Thursday, April 17, 2008

Byrds, Turn, Turn, Turn

by Hector Diego


It wasn't only Gandhi who drove the British from India, but you get the idea.

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Child Protective Services?

by Hector Diego



Child Protective Services (CPS), is an extremely important branch of government. Unfortunately, it is not regulated as well as it should be, and consequently it often does as much harm as good.

For instance, a CPS official in Nevada admitted that it routinely places children with relatives or friends without doing a background check. "In Arkansas, parents filed a lawsuit alleging their children had been sexually abused while in foster care."

How about deaths in foster care? No shortage there, and plenty of lawsuits.

Here's a tidbit from 2002. "MIAMI, Aug. 13 - The head of Florida's child welfare system resigned under pressure today, four months after the state agency gained national attention with the disclosure that a 4-year-old girl in its care had been missing for more than a year before anyone noticed."

Went missing for over a year before anyone noticed. Even her abusive parents probably wouldn't be that spaced out.

How about false accusations? All it takes is a phone call by anyone that wants to ruin your life and the life of your child. Anyone that doesn't like you, or is crazy. I personally know someone that I would vouch for with my life, who had their kid taken by CPS, because of a false accusation. She got her kid back after a hassle and a huge heartache. Could it have been because she was a lesbian? In this day and age? No...

Yes!

I wouldn't trust CPS as far as I could throw it. This Texas case has made me as mad as I've ever been on any social issue. I realize that there are probably some really good people in CPS, but I wonder what the percentage is.

I'm not even ready to comment in detail about the Texas thing. But I do know one thing.

Our Founding Fathers are rolling over in their graves.

Do Economics Explain Everything?

by Jay Allbritton
Liberal economist Paul Krugman talks about the limitations of economics to explain reality.



This is an important theme, since the right has successfully framed the debate over almost everything in society as liberating free market versus stifling socialized regulation. This is not the case at all. Most progressives want limited regulation of crucial services that meet vital needs. So, understanding the limitations of a catch-all free market perspective is vital if this is to be re-framed properly.

Further Down the Spiral--Global Food Crisis Worsens

by Jay Allbritton
By Thalif Deen on Common Dreams:
UNITED NATIONS - As food prices continue to escalate worldwide, some of the poorest nations in the developing world are in danger of social and political upheavals.

The unrest, which is likely to spread to nearly 40 countries, has been triggered largely by a sharp increase in the prices of staple commodities, including wheat, rice, sorghum, maize and soybeans, according to the United Nations.

Following last week’s food riots in Haiti, which claimed the lives of four people, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has appealed to international donors for urgent assistance to one of the poorest countries in the Caribbean.

A meeting of the world’s finance ministers in Washington over the weekend warned that rising food prices were more of a threat to political and social stability than the current crisis in global capital markets.

The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has singled out six countries with an “exceptional shortfall in aggregate food production and supplies”: Lesotho, Somalia, Swaziland, Zimbabwe, Iraq and Moldova.

An additional six countries with “widespread lack of access” to food include Eritrea, Liberia, Mauritania, Sierra Leone, Afghanistan and North Korea.

(more)
Population issues are complicated but there's no doubt that having a population approaching 7 billion people when the world only had 1 billion just 200 years ago is not a good thing. Thom Hartmann has been devoting a lot of time on his radio show to the issue and has repeatedly argued that the answer is not some sort of power play from rich nations telling poor ones to reduce populations, or even the type of self-imposed zero population growth mandate that China brutally enforced with disastrous side effects. Rather, Hartmann argues that the key issue is women's rights. In countries where women are above a certain rights threshold, the population growth is almost always near zero.

Fiona Apple and Elvis Costello

by Jay Allbritton
Costello is rumored to have contributed some vocals to the forthcoming Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins album.

Fiona Apple joins his band for this version of her song "Tymps".


They also performed his song "I Want You".

Barry McGuire, Eve Of Destruction

by Hector Diego


I just have to post this one every once in awhile. Hate your next door neighbor, but don't forget to say grace.

The New Christy Minstrels, Michael Row The Boat Ashore

by Hector Diego


Whenever I think of liberalism in the 20th century, I start with Woodrow Wilson, then it's F.D. Roosevelt, and then I recall, instead of politicians, the music of Woody Guthrie and the folk revival he started with people like Pete Seeger and Burl Ives.

Take the New Christy Minstrels and their audience. Nary a Republican in that crowd, I'll warrant.

The folk music of the fifties and sixties gave birth to the music of Bob Dylan and the Byrds. Don't laugh at this stuff--those college kids were quite sincere. In their golden years I'll bet they are going to vote for...

Obama.

John Coltrane, A Love Supreme Part Two

by Hector Diego

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Bruce Springsteen Stumps For Obama

by Hector Diego


From Springsteen's website:

Dear Friends and Fans:

Like most of you, I've been following the campaign and I have now seen and heard enough to know where I stand. Senator Obama, in my view, is head and shoulders above the rest.

He has the depth, the reflectiveness, and the resilience to be our next President. He speaks to the America I've envisioned in my music for the past 35 years, a generous nation with a citizenry willing to tackle nuanced and complex problems, a country that's interested in its collective destiny and in the potential of its gathered spirit. A place where "...nobody crowds you, and nobody goes it alone."

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Free Hugs In The City Of Brotherly Love

by Hector Diego


It's easy.

Gerry And The Pacemakers, Don't Let The Sun Catch You Crying

by Hector Diego


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Tuesday, April 15, 2008

I CAN Drive 55!

by Hector Diego


With the price of gas in America now reflecting the reality that other countries have experienced for a long time, I recently recalled that many cars get optimal gas efficiency when driven at 55 mph. So I decided to save myself some money, leave a few minutes earlier for wherever I am going, and drive 55.

I have been doing this for a few weeks now, and I am sad to report that, out of the thousands of cars I have encountered on the road, I AM THE ONLY ONE DRIVING 55!

I am being passed by truckers, little old ladies with blue-tinged bouffants, people driving recreational vehicles hauling their cars--any and all drivers.

Americans are addicted to going fast, but why? Why does saving fuel not strike them as important?

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Obama Clarifies "Bitter"--In 2004

by Jay Allbritton
In 2004, Obama spoke to Charlie Rose about engaging voters on economic issues in language they can can clearly understand--the language of their own self interest. Obama speaks eloquently here about the not being condescending to the people who the right wing and Hillary Clinton are now trying to convince that Obama is being condescending to.

Actor Blasts Scientology on YouTube

by Jay Allbritton
Potty mouth Home Alone 4 star Jason Beghe, rips the poop out of Scientology. It only took him 14 years to speak up. I guess the Thetans finally got the better of him. Damn you Thetans!

Marvin Gaye Live, What's Going On

by Hector Diego


Here's a dude in a class by himself.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Obama Discusses Pennsylvania

by Hector Diego

Here, There, and Everywhere

by Hector Diego


John thought "Here, There, and Everywhere" was Paul's greatest composition.

Your Mother Should Know

by Hector Diego


It's not hard to see why the Beatles have been compared to the Marx Brothers, the four seasons, the four directions, earth, water, fire, and air, etc.

No other group or individual in the history of the entire entertainment industry--and even before entertainment became an industry, as far as we know--has attained the status of the Beatles.

They are in a class all their own.

And your mother should know.

The Beatles In India, Part One

by Hector Diego


The scene at Rishikesh had some bizarre moments, as I am sure you will probably agree when you hear everyone singing "She'll Be Coming Around The Mountain" and other American folk songs, while Paul strummed.

Maharishi, apparently, was game for this, but did not sing.

McCain's Math Doesn't Work Either

by Jay Allbritton
Last week Senator John McCain was asked how he plans to balance the budget.

My friends, I'm here to tell you that the old dude's answer sent chills down the chills already going down my spine.

He said he would do what Ronald Reagan did.

Get out your calculators, because we have to do some math.

Reagan took what was at the time considered to be a sizable deficit and tripled it.

The current President Bush came along and took the national debt and he tripled that.

So, if we have a roughly $9 trillion debt now, and McCain is going to do what Reagan did, then... let's see here... carry the one...

$27 trillion.

Wow, that's some straight talk.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Baghdad Bob And George Bush

by Hector Diego


You will remember Baghdad Bob. He was the Iraqi dude that continued to tell his countrymen that all was well even as Bush bombed the crapola out of the Iraqi capital.

Now we have George Bush telling us that we are winning the war in Iraq.

Who to believe?

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Bobbie Gentry, Ode To Billie Joe

by Hector Diego

The "Tallahatchie Bridge", Mississippi

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Dusty Springfield, I Only Want To Be With You

by Hector Diego

Nancy Sinatra, Bang Bang

by Hector Diego


1966.

Jenny Lewis, Rise Up With Fists

by Hector Diego


Something tells me that Jenny Lewis has studied Peggy Lee, below.

Peggy Lee, You Was Right Baby

by Hector Diego


Smokin'!

Louis Armstrong, Hello Dolly

by Hector Diego


"The best-known recording is by Louis Armstrong, in 1964, which reached number-one on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, breaking The Beatles' streak of three number-one hits in a row (they also held the top three spots) and becoming the biggest hit of Armstrong's career, followed by a gold-selling album of the same name."

Louis Armstrong and the Beatles on the same radio station, on the same radio program--those were indeed the glorious days of AM radio.

No more. But you can check out KTWS Radio, 24/7, every day of the year, broadcasting in cyber space from America's Deep South.

That's www.thewalrusspeaks.blogspot.com on your cyber radio dial.

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Saturday, April 12, 2008

Obama Embraces Economic Populism

by Jay Allbritton
Speaking in Indiana on Friday, Barack Obama reiterated comments he made at a San Fransisco fund raiser that characterized working-class Pennsylvanians as angry and bitter. Both John McCain and Hillary Clinton jumped on the remarks. Clinton accused him of looking down his nose at the voters and McCain's camp called Obama "out of touch".

This was Obama's response (video here):
When I go around and I talk to people there is frustration and there is anger and there is bitterness. And what’s worse is when people are expressing their anger then politicians try to say what are you angry about? This just happened – I want to make a point here today. I was in San Francisco talking to a group at a fundraiser and somebody asked how’re you going to get votes in Pennsylvania? What’s going on there? We hear that’s its hard for some working class people to get behind you’re campaign. I said, "Well look, they’re frustrated and for good reason. Because for the last 25 years they’ve seen jobs shipped overseas. They’ve seen their economies collapse. They have lost their jobs. They have lost their pensions. They have lost their healthcare."

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Obama went on to respond directly to McCain and Clinton. Of McCain, he said, "it took him three tries to finally figure out that the home foreclosure crisis was a problem and to come up with a plan for it, and he’s saying I’m out of touch?" Obama then reminded the crowd of Clinton's support for the bankruptcy bill. Obama also responded directly to the McCain camp's charge that he's out of touch by saying, "No, I’m in touch. I know exactly what’s going on. I know what’s going on in Pennsylvania. I know what’s going on in Indiana. I know what’s going on in Illinois. People are fed-up. They’re angry and they’re frustrated and they’re bitter. And they want to see a change in Washington and that’s why I’m running for President of the United States of America."

Obama's firey words should resonate directly with the plight of Americans in small towns everywhere. By identifying directly with their struggle to be heard and represented in Washington, DC, Obama raises the stakes for two opponents deeply flawed when it comes to economic issues.

Earlier, In Indianapolis, Obama spoke out against the inordinate amount paid to CEOs. "We've seen what happens when CEOs are paid for doing a job no matter how bad a job they're doing," Obama said. "We can't afford to postpone reform any longer."

American Artist, Jimmy Durante--Young At Heart

by Hector Diego


Durante (1893-1980) is way before my time, but when I was a kid he was still a stock character in the world of popular culture.

"He was also one of the most beloved people within the entertainment industry: an acquaintance once remarked of Durante, 'You could warm your hands on this man.' "

By the way, the words to this song are true, don't you think?

Friday, April 11, 2008

Muddy Waters, Cocaine And Reefer

by Hector Diego

McKinley Morganfield
(Muddy Waters) 1913-1983

"I'm gonna stick with my reefer, ain't gonna mess around with no cocaine."

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The Doors, Little Red Rooster

by Hector Diego


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The Animals, House Of The Rising Sun

by Hector Diego

Nawlins

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The Kinks, You Really Got Me

by Hector Diego


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Fox News--We're Here, We have a Ludicrous Amount of Flags, Get Used to It

by Jay Allbritton
Oh the fairness and the balance-ness... We all know what Fox News is. Even the people who like it and claim that it really is fair and balanced know that it isn't and say those thing to piss off liberals. They get a kick out of that, and who am I to begrudge them a good time before evolution eventually sorts them out?

But seeing Fox News at work through the lens of John Oliver's satire really leaves a breathtaking record of one of the most effective propaganda outlets in world history.

Here's Oliver's two part documentary about Fox for The Daily Show.

Part 1:


Part 2:

George Harrison, In My Life

by Hector Diego


This one is rare indeed. "In My Life", written by Lennon, is a beloved Beatles song that evokes nostalgia, and more.

Where this was performed by Harrison is anyone's guess.

1974.

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Joan Baez, Tears Of Rage

by Hector Diego


A long nose, crooked toofers...who cares? She was absolutely gorgeous!

And that voice.

1968.

Ernest T. Bass Come A Courtin'

by Hector Diego


Now for some comic relief. Ernest T. is one of my favorite television characters.

Too bad they don't make shows like Andy Griffith anymore.

Stephen King's The Mist

by Hector Diego


The protagonist kills his own son to save him from the monsters, although another minute would have brought the arrival of the US Army and safety.

There, I've spoiled the plot for you and I'm not apologetic. I'm outraged at this film, because I expected it to be like other films based on King's books--endings that offer some hope.

There is nothing at all hopeful about The Mist, and it is a very, very dark film.

Now, if you want disgusting and frightening monsters, you must see The Mist. The producers went out of their way to digitalize monsters that have never been seen in films, and they have succeeded.

When I learned, though, that King not only approved the changes to his story, he even liked them, I blew a gasket. I love King's writing, but one of the reasons I do is because he mixes positive themes with scary scenes.

All you get with The Mist is negative themes with scary scenes. I'm disappointed in King.

True, the film aptly portrays how humans very quickly become animals when they are frightened. But we already know that. Just look at post/911.

If you want to forget about that for an hour and a half, see The Mist.

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