Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Monday, September 29, 2008
Anyone got any advice for a brotha trying to convince another brotha that taking the time to vote is actually worth it? I've been trying to get my folks to get off their asses to vote but I've come up against some tough opposition:
1. Someone who has been on the wrong side of the law (legit or not).
Ex: My younger brother, a real hard knot-head with a troubled past, refuses to support a system that allowed police officers in a small Ohio town (which will not be named) to confiscate his belongings and accuse him and my cousin (falsely) of carrying when he actually did nothing wrong.
2. Someone who believes that faith in the political system is lack of faith in GOD.
EX: My mother
3. Conspiracy Nuts
EX: Older brother, homeowner(!), married(!!), 2 kids. Refuses to voted because "All politicians are liars. Obama is just a little too slick with his words....and McCain, c'mon man, he's a Republican".
Sorry to rant. Any help would be appreciated.
I think this is a pretty damn important thing to take up. A good friend remarked after 2004: "If a few thousand niggers had got off the couch and voted in Cleveland, Kerry would be President."
Not sure it's true...but I wouldn't bet against it. So let's help Tony...and US out.
He's got some comedy in there, as well as real emotions. But the rain makes it.
"The young generation knows this rain will pass..."
We're living in times of great history.
Frankly, I'm tired of having to do so.
Miracle At St. Anna...there's a great story in there. But you have to sift through:
1. Erratic changes of tone that mercilessly punctuate scenes of melodramatic hyper-violence with whimsical, Disney-esque moments of cutesy bonding. It makes the former less impactful and the latter annoying. I just don't need to see cute kid moments after seeing someone take 15 to the dome...again and again as the music shifts to something out of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.
2. Spike Lee "acting"...where great actors are forced to make bad decisions.
3. Spike Lee "casting"...where he casts people to show the starkest differences based on their faces and tendencies and not necessarily their ability be part of a successful ensemble. Also, I've had a sneaking suspicion for many years that Spike casts women he personally finds attractive. I've seen every one of his movies...multiple times. It's just something I've noticed over the years. Cuz some of the ladies in his flicks just don't fit the part.
4. A very, VERY heavy hand. I don't know how many United Negro College Fund moments I can take. ("we're doing this for our people") I get that there was racism against black soldiers during WW2. I also believe, strongly, that they just dealt with it and moved on...rather than be caught up by each and every goddamn instance and do soul-searching. Ugh. I'm tired of it, it's fake-seeming and distracting and in 2008...damn, Spike, it's been done. We get it...just tell the damn story already.
5. Also, someone should have told Spike that when you show too many scene of German soldiers running with clean battle fatigues...it looks like something out of Mel Brooks or Zucker Abrams Zucker. (just a personal pet peeve.)
6. Editing that makes you look at your watch. Do I really need a five minute scene of cute discusssion with characters completely unnecessary to the plot? Really...you could just, you know, cut that shit, Spike.
7. A musical score that absolutely SCREAMS at you: "Look at this touching moment!" "Watch out, gun violence and explosions!" "Awww, yeah, someone's about to get laid!"
I was very...very eager to see this movie. I am very...very unhappy about this movie.
Spike Lee wrote and directed my favortie movie of all time. Mo' Betta Blues. A film pregnant with swagger and style, music and lust, passion and sadness. I swear by it and am convinced it was him at the top of his powers.
Miracle is the last film of his I'll be seeing for a while. He took a great story and Spike Lee'd all over it. I know it's an important film, but I am deeply worried that Mr. Lee thinks it's a great film. And that no one can tell him otherwise.
It didn't come out right. There are too many distractions. And, sadly, no one had the balls to tell Spike... "less is more".
"Debuting in ninth place with dismal results was the Spike Lee war drama Miracle at St. Anna which brought in an estimated $3.5M from 1,185 for a sad per screen average of 2,954M. And closing out the top ten was Tyler Perry's The Family That Preys which had the largest drop in the top 10, falling 56.5% to $3.1M bringing its cume to $32.8M."
A sad day? Or just desserts?
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Here's something to take the edge off...One Eskimo.
I have no idea what it means, but it's soothing to watch.
(does this mean certain creatures give their lives to make the world a better place? Dunno...what do you think?)
Saturday, September 27, 2008
THIS on the other hand...I love this clip.
1. Cafferty, like me, knows the Emperor Has No Clothes. And it's WONDERFUL to see someone say it aloud.
2. This video shows every reason Diallo and I make fun of Wolf Blitzer's "investigative journalism". LOL! Oh...the waffling.
Friday, September 26, 2008
(ps - I have a brother in Louisville Kentucky. I have visited twice. Like most of America, that state is TWO distinct states in one. Urban Blue/Rural Red.)
ps - In Defense Of This Redneck...really quickly.
I was thinking as I watched this "Thank God, no one in my family is like this ignor...wait...ummm". Thing is, I actually have family members, whom I love to death, whose opinions are just as ill informed. Not about Obama, of course...But if this woman were black, and her accent was south side of Chicago rather than rural Kentucky, and the subject was "why blacks should only marry other blacks" instead of "why America shouldn't vote for Obama..."
can't front, she could be my third cousin.
Also, you have to assume the liberal people at Sesame Street had black people involved in the creation of these characters. But it does kinda blow your mind and shows you how stereotypes of blacks have changed.
And be honest. Roosevelt had some great songs...
LOUD / SOFT
I think I'm gonna sample that second one.
"The arthur of this article is a hater. Just look at the way the CBS interview with Katy Corick was edited to make Palin look like a bufoon. She did just fabulos when Shawn Hannity interviewed her, See the difference between a hostile journalist and a fair and balanced journalist."
And currently, the most obviously "high friendly" show on the planet is FRISKY DINGO on Adult Swim.
(pretty much all of Adult Swim's offerings are created for the stoner heart.)
If you blaze...give it a run around the block.
Instead, whenever I think of him, I'll forever have an image seared in my mind of a primate who just can't "go". That or one of his multiple appearances on MTV's "Lip Service" as a judge.*
*= Seriously, that show has a ridicously high number of rappers on it that didn't survive the '90s--Daddy-O, Da Youngstaz, and Positive K, just to name a few. Someone needs to investigate. MC Serch seems to be the only one who made it out alive.
1. Returns to Vietnam and jails himself.
2. Offers the post of "vice vice president" to Warren Buffett.
3. Challenges Obama to suspend campaign so they both can go and personally drill for oil offshore.
4. Learns to use computer.
5. Does bombing run over Taliban-controlled tribal areas of Pakistan.
6. Offers to forgo salary, sell one house.
7. Sex-change operation.
8. Suspends campaign until Nov. 4, offers to start being president right now.
9. Sells Alaska to Russia for $700 billion.
10. Pledges to serve only one term. OK, half a term.
And speaking of stunts:
Thursday, September 25, 2008
I could watch this woman speak all day...
... she's the perfect storm of ignorance and pride.
God bless her.
In some small part of my soul, lately, I want her and McCain to win.
It's becoming painfully clear that Barack/Joe is the ONLY competent choice. (right, Blacktain?)...and the fact that McCain is polling ANYWHERE above 20% at this point speaks to racism.
Sorry, I just don't believe a non-racist person can watch her ramble and honestly think..."yup, put her in the Whitehouse." I don't believe a non-racist can watch McCain's transparent political maneuvering and lack of understanding of the issues and think...you get my point.
So...some small part of me wants her and McCain to win, just so Americans can look at their racism in the face and say...
"My God, I'm so fucking racist I let a war monger and an idiot in charge of our ailing country. I'm so racist my family is struggling and I can't find a decent job, get decent healthcare or even feel safe on the roads anymore. I'm so racist that America as we know it, and the world, may cease to have the meaning it once did... and all because I couldn't bring myself to vote for a black person. I chose complete national anarchy over a nigger."
THIS...is how racist I am.
Let them stare that shit in the face.
I give up.
ps - what the fuck is Bill Clinton's problem? Is he so mad at Barack that he wants the nation to suffer? Why does he keep going on the airwaves to praise McCain/Palin? Did Barack call his mother a bitch? What gives, what am I missing?
ps2 - can you guys tell how mad I am? I just got back from a funeral (love you, grandad) where I avoided the news for about 10 hours and immersed in family. And as soon as I cut on the TV...shenanigans galore.
ps3 - I was in Arizona recently. That is literally the sweltery hottest city in America. I know they have a lot of black people there now (including about 40 members of my family)...but how anyone can live there in that dry 121 in the shade heat....damn.
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Sunday, September 21, 2008
I call it the "American Idol" phenomenon. (It's better put here in Lawrence Diller's essay "Mr. Rogers Was Wrong")
You see...the World War II generation were tough folk. They lived through the war and then were in charge of the country during the Civil Rights Movement. So...they imparted those ideas to their kids, "Life is tough, watch your ass."
But those kids, let's call them...Baby Boomers, were basically a bunch of softies who felt their parents were too hard (they were) and that they needed to instill radically different ideas in their own kids (they didn't).
Hence: We grew up to the strains of "you're special just the way you are and you can be anything you want in life." They taught us that stuff...and they started to believe it themselves. In 1948 to be a successful actor...you usually had to be a helluva singer and dancer too. In 2008, you'd be hard pressed to find a legitimate triple threat.
Well...enter Sarah Palin, the living embodiment of that philosophy.
Our society lost it's ability to judge talent. People have lost their desire to pay their dues.
I think the tipping point was when Paris Hilton got her own TV show on Fox. Untalented people have ALWAYS been successful in entertainment...but their numbers, historically, were very low. Now they are the rule and not the exception. And that woman was a legit mega star based on an errant blow job, the internet and TONS of desire.
And that became the new rule in American society: To be successful, all you need is passion, drive and focus...not talent.
It translates in every walk of life. And it became the new mantra. And it's still the mantra of the masses.
1. Arnold Schwarznegger is Governor of the world's fifth largest economy.
2. Kim Kardashian is a legitimate celebrity.
3. Rick Ross is a successful rapper.
4. Jennifer Hudson won an academy award for her "acting".
5. Tila Tequila is a star based on looking good on MySpace.
6. Beyonce designs clothes. Venus Williams is getting in on it too.
In every walk of life people want to do things that look great to them...but for which they are woefully unprepared. And it never occurs to any of them...or us, that they shouldn't be doing it.
Despite how it looks, this man is NOT doing a heckuva job.
So please stop saying..."how dare Sarah Palin think she can be President!"
Bullshit. Look at American society. How can Sarah Palin NOT think she's qualified?
Still...and I'm in the minority...
The Emperor Has No Clothes.
There is only ONE aspect of our society where the new mantra doesn't apply. Sports. That's why I spent the weekend watching football...it's the only truth we Americans have left.
If George W. Bush wasn't the POTUS...I'd probably like him a lot.
He seems like a fairly awesome dude to hang out with. Fun loving, flippant and only cares about baseball.
He loves to dance.
Really loves it.
And despite what people think...he's not a racist. He has no problem putting black people in positions of power. He had more blacks in his top level cabinet than Bill Clinton.
...There's no proof he hates black people...
Now..POOR PEOPLE...is another story.
George Bush can't fu*king stand poor people. As is often said, he was born on third base and thought he hit a triple. He has no use for the poor or the wretched or the weak. He is VERY un-Jesus-like in that regard.
Just look at his policies and priorities. He's basically like every rich trust fund conservative I went to college with. These guys (and some of them WERE racist...but not most) were just out looking for a good time. They hated taxes and loved to dance.
And that's what Bush is doing. He's just a rich guy out looking for a good time. I bet if you hung with him you'd have a blast.
The problem...is that he, and his rampant, rich-focused, world-incuriousness...is in charge of whether people live or die. The problem is that this "guy out looking for a good time" is The President. Plus he holds a grudge (hence Iraq)...so he's a very dangerous person for the world. And the fact that his finger was on the button for eight years speaks volumes about our society...
But if he wasn't in charge of anything, like say...he ran a baseball team, or if he was just a work buddy, or some awesome guy who lived in the same cul-de-sac as me...shit, I might even call him a friend.
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Love these guys. One day, me and B will have a show and be able to showcase them (as well as our impersonations of them).
Second, on Nick's page, one can watch a few old Soul Train Dancer clips. Always fun.
But most of all, check out the clip below and go straight to around the 0:55 mark.
Not sure who the "Slo Mo" Dancers were, but that "move" if you want to call it that, was waaay ahead of its time.
Reminds me of the Pharcyde in their video "Drop." Someone should do a Where Are They Now for the Soul Train Dancers. Some of them were really great. Sadly, something tells me a lot of them didn't make it out of the 80s alive, with the AIDS, gang, and drug scourges of that decade.
Friday, September 19, 2008
You don't want to know how much I've paid over the years for import CD compilations and vinyl from the period from roughly 1982 to 1986 when this sound was all the rage. "So Fine", "Beat The Streets", and countless other tracks, simply put, just make me feel good.
A few months ago, a friend of mine came to town and we spent one very late night on the turntables. Taking turns selecting and mixing, we recorded the session and were somewhat amazed when it wound up sounding half-way decent.
All this said, one of the better blends came between Evelyn "Champagne" King's "Love Come Down" and this track by The System...
Looking at this reminds me how far music and technology have come. In '83 the best you could do is plug your Apple IIe/Commodore 64 (or whatever was popular at the time) into a synthesizer.
Today, we have AutoTune, most notably used by everyone's favorite top hat wearing sainger, T-Pain.
Ok. I know AutoTune has been unfairly bastardized. Technology needs to be used wisely otherwise it can turn the music into a sonic mess. Still, though, I have to thank those early innovators for laying a strong foundation. Now if only we could find some folks to uphold it.
Although this song doesn't have a formal video, I have to post it. I can't count the number of times my friends and I have used it as a source of inside jokes. Spontaneous outbursts of "Moto...MOTO!" during high school math classes were common. We had a vague idea about what was being said but that was mainly due to context.
When I got to college, I worked in the cafeteria with a guy from Japan. One day, I asked him if he'd be willing to translate two songs for me, and he did. The tracks, De La's "Long Island Wildin'" and this one...
Where do I begin?
I think there's a general concensus that John Lennon was, and still is, an icon and one of the greatest musical talents ever. But seriously, him allowing his wife to record and put "Kiss Kiss Kiss" on their Double Fantasy album makes me question his sanity.
Really? A roughly one minute orgasm on wax? Largely nonsensical lyrics?
C'mon! We expect more from the man you brought us "Yesterday", to name just one. Unfortunately, Fantasy was his last release before his death and the album cover he signed for his would-be killer, Mark David Chapman.
That last paragragh was a little sobering but, still, this song is "Grade A" awful. BTW, at the end of the song, she's saying "Love me, Kiss me", or something to that effect.
Don't say I never taught you anything.
Thursday, September 18, 2008
Bashir and I have been hired to write on a new series that will be premiering next month.
Needless to say, this is keeping us very busy, so bear with us if the posts come a little less often.
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
I am almost beside myself with disbelief over the latest hooplah regarding this small town mayor turned governor of the 49th state to be admitted to the union (1959). All the mudslinging, outright lies and snide comments made about latte drinking community organizers is one thing but now they want to go after Oprah?? Lord, is no one sacred?
Let me make this point crystal clear: I am NOT some foaming at the mouth fervent Oprah supporter. I respect the hell out of her but she turned me off with a few shows back in the day and now I rarely watch the show. NEVERTHELESS this latest diatribe about how she is snubbing Palin by not having her on the show and calling for a boycott etc is beyond ridiculous.
1. she had Obama on the show in Jan 05 and Oct 06, BEFORE his presidential bid was formally announced.
2. EVEN if her giving equal time to the candidates were a valid issue it would be McCain who should be on the show NOT Palin.
3. It's her show. She's in charge. Haters go home!
We are living in the age of the new type of McCarthy-ism.
(I call it The Age Of Un-Enlightenment, where lies and truth are given equal weight. There's so much information in our world, that none is seen as objective truth. Everything is subjective. Nothing is tangible. Everything is suspect.)
I can't imagine what that must have been like when everyone who didn't display an American flag in their yard was accused of being a Communist...or rather, I couldn't until now.
During the "Red Scare" of the 40's and 50's America was so paranoid, fueled by Joseph McCarthy's communist witch hunts, that even to question the paranoia of the day...made one look guilty.
Look at nowadays. To question the unbridled manner in which Neo-Conservatives have driven our beautiful country into the ground...is to be labeled "un-Patriotic". It's a self-fulfilling prophesy. The more you rail against the unjust manner of kleptocracy that right-wingers have engaged in, all in the name of "keeping us safe"... the more you're seen as someone against America.
Get that...by calling out people who are hurting America...you are seen as un-American.
But all things come to an end. Good and bad.
So if it looks like the more we call out John McCain and Sarah Palin for their lies...the more their supporters turn a blind eye. If it seems that the more we point out that, lately, Republicans are really bad with our money...the more we're called people who wanna give the poor rich people's money. If it seems that the more the New York Times does good investigation...the more FoxNews labels them the mouth piece of the elitist left...
...relax and take a look at history. It gets bad before it gets better.
But it always gets better. Arch conservative right wingers know their time is short. They know America is a diverse place. They know their grasp on power is slipping because the country is changing. It's getting lefter and younger and browner. They know that ideas that were once considered "lefty" are now "common sense" or "main stream"...they know it.
We are TRULY witnessing the last throes of an ideology on the wane.
(But I'm not Dick Cheney...so when I tell you that, you know it's not a lie.)
There is much work ahead for those of us who wanna rescue our nation from the brink of an abyss of stupidity and decline. That twinge that many of us feel when we see Sarah Palin speak is the same that ran down the spine of Medgar Evers when he listened to Gov. George Wallace. It's the same tingle at the back of the neck that Paul Robeson felt when he listened to Woodrow Wilson. It's the same the New York Giants felt when they watched The Patriots warming up. (dirty cheating bastards.) That flutter of nerves when you see them talking is familiar.
It starts as worry...
...then morphs into resolve.
So relax. We WILL win.
We did in the 1700's.
We did in the 1800's.
We did in the 1900's.
And we will win today.
We always win.
These guys are full of win. So are we.
Monday, September 15, 2008
Sunday, September 14, 2008
Saturday, September 13, 2008
Apparently I am a glutton for punishment. I saw the latest Tyler Perry melodrama (The Family That Preys) yesterday and now my brain is mad at me. I can't say that I blame it. In fact I take full credit for subjecting it to such ridiculousness. And while I'm at it I will apologize to my eyes and ears as well.
1. one dimensional characters taken to the extreme in their virtues and faults;
2. completely unrealistic scenarios where characters make the exact opposite choice that any halfway sane person would make in the same situation;
3. subplots that are distracting;
4. additional characters who you are supposed to care about but don't have enough information to even remember why they are in the scene in the first place;
5. main characters who disappear for too long;
6. continuity problems galore;
7. not sure what i was supposed to take from the film - even though you think you raised your children right they can still turn out to be evil, selfish, completely trifling and/or just plain stupid (i mean stupid to the point of suspected retardation stupid).
*For the sake of attempted balance, there were moments that I found amusing or well done and to be honest the majority of the acting was solid, unfortunately the movie as a whole stunk.
Here's the thing - occasionally I do actually enjoy a Tyler Perry flick. I never expect high brow cinema but every now and then he comes very close to authentic dialogue and I can't help myself, his Medea character makes me laugh. But this latest foray into "real" dramatic writing is a disgrace. I respect his business model because it has made him a sh*t load of money BUT I still believe that he can keep his base audience AND bring in a new audience if he wrote and directed better material. Alas, I don't see it happening. Why change now? What on earth would be his motivation?
(by the way as I was telling my friend that tyler perry may have gotten my money for the absolute last time, an older woman walking ahead of us relayed her impression of the film. And I quote: "That was exceptional." So there you have it - a difference of opinion)
Unfortunately, as seen time and time again, a significant number of the citizens of this country reward mediocrity. They revel in simplicity. Complex ideas are shunned and intelligent people are vilified. And yes, I have now segued into talking about the current political scene. Simplicity on the big screen is one thing, simplicity in the big house is quite another.
sorry i've been away so long. the real world is nothing to play with.
Friday, September 12, 2008
Women Against Sarah Palin
It'll have you like, "oh yeah..THOSE are the American Women I know".
Watching the Sarah Palin interview last night I realized, for the first time, what it must have felt like to be in the Civil Rights Movement. We are in a similar imperiled time. I keep waiting for some responsible adult to tap McCain on the shoulder and say, "no, John, we can't do this."
I've been thinking of what this era in American History will be called. It came to me last night.
We're living in The Age of UN-Enlightenment.
And it really is a fight for survival. Stupidity and dumb-shit has our country in a stranglehold. Common sense doesn't matter anymore. Lies and truth are given equal sway. And the people would rather watch cars race around in a circle than connect the dots between their lives and our government.
This fight, to wrest our nation from those who RELY on the stupid, from those who let being "smart" become a negative, from those live in mansions and mock others who worked up from their bootstraps as elitist...
This fight, may be just beginning.
Behold, "Hole In The Wall".
As I alluded to before, this show has already been popular in Italy, Australia, and it's birthplace, Japan. I checked a clip of the Japanese version and, for some reason I can't nail down, it looked so much better than it's American cousin.
I thought that was humorous.
But when I look at the first video, I instantly think of this:
Am I justified in my concern for how low expectations are for us as an audience? Does anyone else see a difference between the two versions of the show?
I had another idea but I'll hold off on that for another time. The isht was just a little too bizarre for me to look at today.
Instead, a little lighter fare from Philly and Japan.
Thursday, September 11, 2008
The main artist in the video is called T-Baby and she's from Detroit.
From what I can tell, she doesn't have a MySpace page. There is, however, another rapper from Detroit named T-Baby who has a MySpace page but it doesn't seem as though she's associated with this video (she can actually rap).
And lucky for her...
In a Detroit News story, this T-Baby defended her shoestring budget video and song.
For the record, I think it's obvious her heart is in the right place. Everybody in the country knows how "cold" the D can be and I feel for her losses.
But this clip is proof positive that execution is EVERYTHING.
Good God. I don't think I'll be getting this one out of my head for a while.
Dude is tough and proved just how much a snivelling little punk Alan Colmes is.
I have never seen Hannity trounced like that on his own show.
"If you're a minority and you're selected for a job over more qualified
candidates you're a "token hire."
If you're a conservative and you're selected for a job over more
qualified candidates you're a "game changer."
Black teen pregnancies? A "crisis" in black America.
White teen pregnancies? A "blessed event."
If you grow up in Hawaii you're "exotic."
Grow up in Alaska eating mooseburgers, you're the quintessential
Similarly, if you name you kid Barack you're "unpatriotic."
Name your kid Track, you're "colorful."
If you're a Democrat and you make a VP pick without fully vetting the
individual you're "reckless."
A Republican who doesn't fully vet is a "maverick."
If you are a Democratic male candidate who is popular with millions of
people you are an "arrogant celebrity".
If you are a popular Republican female candidate you are "energizing the
If you are a younger male candidate who thinks for himself and makes his
own decisions you are "presumptuous".
If you are an older male candidate who makes last minute decisions you
refuse to explain, you are a "shoot from the hip" maverick.
If you are a candidate with a Harvard law degree you are "an elitist-out
of touch" with the real America.
if you are a legacy (dad and granddad were admirals) graduate of
Anapolis, with multiple disciplinary infractions you are a hero.
If you manage a multi-million dollar nationwide campaign, you are an
If you are a part time mayor of a town of 7000 people, you are an
If you go to a south side Chicago church, your beliefs are "extremist".
If you believe in creationism and don't believe global warming is man
made, you are "strongly principled".
If you cheated on your first wife with a rich heiress, and left your
disfigured wife and married the heiress the next month, you're a
If you have been married to the same woman with whom you've been wed to
for 19 years and raising 2 beautiful daughters with, you're "risky".
If you're a black single mother of 4 who waits for 22 hours after her
water breaks to seek medical attention, you're an irresponsible parent,
endangering the life of your unborn child.
But if you're a white married mother of 4 who waits 22 hours, you're spunky.
If you're a 13-year-old Chelsea Clinton, the right-wing press calls you
If you're a 17-year old pregnant unwed daughter of a Republican, the
right-wing press calls you "beautiful" and "courageous."
If you teach abstinence only in sex education, you get teen parents.
If you teach responsible age appropriate sex education, including the
proper use of birth control, you are eroding the very fiber of society."
That about says it all.
Been reading a lot of blogs and columns. Liberals/Democrats everywhere are going crazy. Wringing their hands about how McCain is leading and what Barack did wrong. What we did wrong. Who's to blame. The tone is basically that McCain played his best card last..and we got nothing left to counter it. And we're OFFICIALLY doomed to at least four more years of bad right-wing governance.
The major recurring harangues are:
1. Barack should have picked Hillary to blunt McCain's advantage.
2. Barack should be more angry and passionate.
3. Barack should get more of his fellow Dems to get out to the public to blunt McCain.
4. Barack should never have uttered Palin's name, thus giving her authority.
See...last time I checked.
1. Banks are failing, that's like some Depression Era shit.
2. People are getting kicked out of their homes.
3. Russia bitch slapped us with NO consequences.
4. Iraq is about to explode again...(trust me on this, I'll explain below).
5. 6.1 percent unemployment and growing.
6. Growing disparity between the rich and poor.
7. The Justice Department is a joke and our Civil Liberties are being eroded daily.
8. The middle class is shrinking.
9. The Dollar is falling.
10. Gas prices are rising again (have you noticed they rise really high, then come down a touch, then rise again...hint: they'll never be low again).
11. We've become a joke to the world.
12. Reality TV gets the best ratings.
So...dear friends, the fact that...
...has nothing to do with Barack Obama.
He can cajole. He can point out. He can preach. He can rail.
But when the electorate makes no connection between their downfall and the people who got them there....but, instead, wanna do it all over again with a new face...
I mean, damn man, what can you do?
In a world where all this information is public and free and easy to understand, what can you do?
In a country where people want someone "just like them" despite the fact that NO ONE RUNNING is ever just like them, they're all elites, and so was Abraham Lincoln and George Washington and it's good that they were elites, what can you do?
In a world where Hurricane Katrina showed us why "crony politics" (as practiced by Palin and McCain) don't work, yet people want more of that, I mean, Good GOD...what can you do?
Barack and Biden don't have to elucidate people's reality for them, they're living it. People know how many jobs they're working and what's going on with their healthcare. But Barack has to prove he's the one to fix it? Bullshit.
A SWEET ANALOGY:
Imagine you and a few others are in the middle of the ocean on a boat. The captain and his first mate have been drinking heavily. The boat hits a rock. The boat springs a leak. You can see the shore of an island a mile away.
In AMERICA 1992:
(a) One passenger argues you should let someone sober take over the oars...which gives you the best chance to make it to shore before this thing sinks.
(b) everyone agrees and sober guy takes the oars.
IN AMERICA 2008:
(a) One passenger argues you should let someone sober take over steering...which gives you the best chance to make it to shore before this thing sinks.
(b) but ANOTHER passenger argues you should let the first mate row. He has more experience than the sober passenger. Plus the sober passenger is black. And his name is terroris-ty. Yeah, he's sober, but he might have a plot to actually make the boat sink. Plus I heard he hates rich people. Plus his wife hates rich people and white people too. Plus the first mate has been drinking, but he's only "beer" drunk unlike the captain who was "whisky" drunk...see? So he's drunk, but not "drunk" drunk...so yeah. Let the first mate do it.
Must Be Sober To Operate.
Seriously... Any random Democrat on the PLANET should be able to run on no platform at all and win this election.
Jim Lehrer: What's your platform, ARD?
Any Random Democrat (at a debate): My platform? Umm...have you seen America lately?
Really...this shouldn't even be about tactics or speeches or lipstick. This should be about what's fucked up and who's watch was it on...and who can fix it?
(as Blacktain America intoned, this isn't about right or left...it's about "competent".)
But it's not and we're beating ourselves up for running another "egghead".
Jesus, people, get a clue. Stop writing that garbage. "Tactics"?
ps 1 - I am now convinced that McCain is the worse between he and Palin.
She's a newbie, looking to make friends and influence people. I know it's trendy to hate her. But having looked at TONS of her efforts in Alaska her crimes seem to be theft and crony-ism, both pretty bad and will hurt us. But it's not in her best interest, if she were President, to polarize the nation. She's VERY opportunistic and VERY young...she wants to be around for a while. She has babies. She'll try to be bi-partisan. Granted, she'll be in over her head and our country will continue to crumble due to her ignorance and mistakes...but she'll try really hard. She may even listen to some NON-neo cons.
McCain on the other hand wants to pick a fight with Russia. Badly.
ps 2 - One of the only things keeping the peace in Iraq was help from the Sunni militias. They were tired of the small Al-Qaeda forces killing innocent arabs. They stopped targeting the occupiers (us) and started kicking Al-Qaeda in Iraq's ass.
The Shia government now wants them disbanded. The Shia government now has more money and influence and a bigger army so they don't need them anymore. The ONLY think keeping the Shia's from trying to disband the Sunni militias by FORCE is US soliders...LITERALLY in the middle.
The US drawdown has begun.
Do you think the Sunni militias will give up power and go gently into that good night?
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
The reason I was never to worried about this election is that, even if Barack lost, we'd at least have competent adults back in charge...in the way that hasn't happened with Bush.
McCain is 72...and his act of judgment, rather than getting some stodgy old, but at least competent Republican...
...is choosing a "hockey mom" to stare down our enemies and have our FUCKING nuclear codes, command of the army
Yeah...I haven't slept well in two weeks.
Diallo and I were talking about this in our office...the best thing about the Clinton years was that you never even thought about the government, you just went on with your life... with her in office our guard has to go back to being UP ALL THE TIME again...it's like we finally escaped Bush, and we only lost two major cities, destroyed the Justice Department and got into 2.5 wars.
And for our efforts and work...
...we get to do it all over again. It's like being at a parole hearing for a crime you didn't commit...and having a surprise witness show up
ps - An Open Letter To Bill Clinton,
We rode for you. When you cheated on your wife, when your inaction cost us the house and senate, when you lied under oath...we rode for you and your legacy.
you're the best speaker in the Democratic party...and you've been silent.
we need you now, and you are disappeared. Just as Kerry needed you in 2004 but you knew Hillary was running so you didn't ride for him...you chilled and did just enough and he lost.
now...you want Hillary to run in 2012 and your feelings are hurt...and you're silent again. you've taken your ball and you wanna go home.
your attitude is not just fuck Obama, who you don't like, but...really...it means fuck AMERICA which is teetering on the brink of permanent damage.
never again, Bill.
"Thomas, 60, has voted on the court to outlaw the use of race in college admissions and in determining which public schools students will attend. He wrote with evident resentment in his autobiography "My Grandfather's Son" that he felt he was allowed to attend Yale Law School in the 1970s because of his race and took a tough course load to prove he was as able as his white classmates." - Associated Press
I love that he was "resentful" about getting into Yale Law because of his race. It's like, "fine then, man, go to Howard Law." No one forces you at gun-point to go to Yale Law...
Was he resentful when he was nominated to the Supreme Court even though he was woefully underqualified at the time to fill Thurgood Marshall's seat?
The guy's whole life has been Affirmative Action-ed.
If anything, we should all be anti-Affirmative Action because of its tendency to advance Clarence Thomas.
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
Monday, September 8, 2008
Fast forward to the present and "Paper Planes" is now getting heavy rotation on Los Angeles' hip hop station. Surprising that it is getting played and also surprising that it took so long. That's what can only be called a slow build.
Also, I was going to do a post about last night's MTV Awards, but at this point, why pile on? Everyone knows it was poorly produced and really boring. Russell Brand as host?! I mean, was Tom Green all booked up? Carrot Top unavailable? I had to fast forward his monologue on TiVo just to escape the loud sounds of the crickets.
I did kinda dug T.I. and Rihanna performing Live Your Life, though. That track is growing on me. But, on a side note, is T.I. using a different (higher) voice on his songs these days?
Sunday, September 7, 2008
1. The press is going so be on the following talking points (a) Obama can't close, (b) McCain is now the front runner as all the polls will show. His bounce will be pushed as evidence he's the one America wants. No one will hold his feet to the fire, no will remind voters that he's an elder statesmen in the party that is hurting America so much.
2. The Palin love-fest will continue with the media she claims to despise. (a) it's going to be ugly as they continue to equate her to Obama rather than Biden (b) she will benefit from the same "outrage fatigue" that helped Bush...there's so many things NOT to like about this woman that listing them makes you sound like a paranoid conspiracy theorist. Palin rallies the base...so unless you have proof that she said "fuck God"...you need to stop with the chain emails about how bad she really is. The right doesn't care. And neither does the press after they agreed to go easy on her.
(Belive it or not, that helped Clinton in 1992. There were so many claims about his inability to control his libido that he called them all part of a plan against him...and he was elected.)
Horse Race politics like ours focus less on substance and more on tactics. Who cares what McCain is saying or if it's true...all that matters is he's in the lead so he's doing something right. And Obama can't close.
Shit is about to get ugly...
...still and all I have faith in American's ability to ultimately do the right thing.
I think this presents a great opportunity for Barack on a few fronts:
1. GROUNDGAME MATTERS: He should remember he's been here before. Hillary was polling better than him WITHIN the Dem party toward the middle/end of the primary. Just as he won the Dem Primary early with a great game plan and infrastructure...so too now his people need to keep that in mind. They need to focus on ground game in VA, MI & MO...get those organizations strong, keep registering. Keep working on the ground.
2. "LOFTY" WORKS: When Obama was speaking from the mountaintop he was in charge and inspirational, every time he gets specific against all the minutia that McCain/Palin spew, he loses us. He has let the Republicans once again turn his strength into a weakness...claiming he's all rhetoric and no substance. Fuck that. Keep up with the rhetoric, people are getting inspired and wanna hit the streets for him. Don't let them change you, cuz they can't compete. Kill the lame super specific stump speeches. THEY DON'T FUCKING WORK. McCain knows this, that's why they are doing it. Cuz when you start to get specific, you get as boring as they are.
The last I checked, inspirational leaders usually win. (See: Reagan, Ronald or Kennedy, John F.)
3. STAY ON MESSAGE: He REALLY needs to stop apologizing and correcting past statements. You only get one chance to make a first impression. Drown McCain with Bush...Suffocate him with "Maverick"...make that word lose meaning. "McCain is such a Maverick that he voted with Bush 90% of the time. If that's what it means to be a Maverick, McCain can have it." Turn his strength against his (as was AWESOMELY encouraged by Gawker.com)
Dude... America needs change and McCain is part of what got us here....speak the truth, Obama. It drives the passions of your supporters, it gets kids people out to the polls...It WILL work.
4. REMEMBER THE REALITY: The Republicans have had eight years to help America and they've made it worse. Their leadership is so bad, their party leader couldn't even attend their convention...again, push this meme. If you don't wanna say this, then use your surrogates. But keep this in the headlines.
Further...Palin = Bush.
Your supporters in the media need to be pushing that ALL THE TIME. McCain just believes in Bush. Palin IS Bush re-incarnated. A hyper-religious zealot who believes in the power of crony-ism. There's actual proff of this in the way she ran the mayor's office: Firing experienced people and replacing them with friends who are doing " a heckuva job".
Speak to that reality. She's Bush for the new era. A Republican governor more guided by "her gut" than by the truth. (see: Warming, Global). Equate her to Bush. Have your people do it all day every day. Make the media pick this up.
5. SOMETIMES, THE MEDIA WORKS: Front runners get attention. McCain and Palin will now be called the frontrunners...there's a possibility the media will focus more on their actual records and provide more scrutiny. Don't bank on it, but it could make a difference. Obama should use the time OUT of the limelight to get strong and remember...nothing worth having comes easy. Still, when his every move isn't criticized and over analyzed as much since he's "losing"...he should be able to do more and really reach out to those independent voters who make all the difference.
6. IT'S STILL THE ECONOMY, STUPID: Nothing to add here. American's are hurting financially, remind them who's at the wheel.
But you've been here before, Mr. Obama. Counted out time and again. Now get to work.
ps - please stop saying Palin is underqualified: she's not.
Sarah Palin is (a) incapable (b) a purveyor of policies that have PROVEN to hurt America time and again and (c) a believer in crony politics. But she's not underqualified...she would just suck.
Saturday, September 6, 2008
Someone reminded me that Lena Horne turned 91 on June 30th this year and she's still going!!! Much love to the Horne...
Here's a gallery of some great people born on that same day.
Lena Horne (age 24, circa 1941)
David Alan Grier
Friday, September 5, 2008
It's enough to make you wanna to slap yourself. Or somebody else.
But eventually, you have to let it go.
Ahhhhh...I'm better now.
Sweet mother of mercy. So much about that phrase is wrong.
So much about this site is comedy-tastic.
I'll leave it for you to explore and enjoy it on your own.
also... the site's founder, Dick Ivory...um...bit of a hot head:
(whole argument is great, but the best stuff happens at 7:03)
Little story for you...back when I was in college, there was a day of "Rock the Vote" and much of the student body was "free food-bribed" to attend this thing in the quad where we were supposed to hang at booths for different causes, tie-dye shirts red, white and blue, miss class, etc.
There was a kid there representing the Republicans, black guy. We got into a nasty argument. And it wasn't really even because I was a Democrat...but in the late 90's everyone under 35 voted Democrat, cuz Bill Clinton was cool.
It started when he accosted me as I was just trying to eat some free pizza from the "Feminists against Radcliffe*" booth and was all in my face about voting for Bob Dole. I asked him to give me just ONE reason why a black person would become a Republican...all he could repeat was "because it's the Party of Lincoln" over and over.
I took him to the wood shed...rhetorically. In front of a small group of observers. Thoroughly and humorlessly. It was ugly.
(a friend with a camera was nearby when it went down. Video of it actually existed, I'd kill to see it but he probably taped over it with bad singing from a talent show)
Bottom line...to this day, it's still hard for me to comprehend college age black Republicans.
I don't doubt their sincerity, or their integrity. I do question their command of the issues...and their ability to empathize with the larger black community.
I have a soft-spot in my heart for the lower portion of society's pyramid, always have and, I hope, always will. And I know that a true picture of advancement for the less fortunate requires many dimensions; from removal of social institutions that perpetuate inequality to the robust promotion of economic self-empowerment...
Still, I would love a young black Republican to give me a great, non-taxes/economic based reason to become a Republican. I get it, if the most important thing in your life is lower taxes and COMPLETELY unregulated capitalism...yeah, you should probably become a Republican (though if you want economic prosperity for the country, you should probably vote Democrat, see: Bush, George W.)...
But low taxes and Objectivist thought only make up only a small portion of what my experience has taught me is important to African Americans. I need another reason.
Let's get into this. Really, I wanna learn and I want our site to be a place where even WILDLY divergent views can at least be aired.
The floor is yours.
*if you went to Harvard that joke is Hilarious.
Thursday, September 4, 2008
MAYOR ADMITS GUILT, RESIGNS
In the interim, this means Ken Cockrel becomes Mayor and the President of City Council title is handed over to our favorite councilwoman.
I have really mixed emotions, for a multitude of reasons, but I hope one of my favorite places on the face of the Earth can start to move forward.
2. I'd stop worrying about the future, about electing people over and over who are incurious about the world and don't care what people in the world think...then pretend to be appalled when they discover our global neighbors have opinions different from our own.
3. I'd stop caring about the integrity of the Supreme Court, the rights of minorities, the rights of the disenfranchised, the rights of women to choose their own paths, the rights of those who wish NOT to pray, the rights of those who wish to simply be left alone.
4. I'd stop being galled at the wild amnesia practiced by our electorate. The supreme lack of reason that leads a person to look at their life, see it's a mess, see government has hurt them instead of help them...and decide, "Yes, give me four more years of this."
5. I'd stop worrying about my country in which the lives of the people get worse and the institutions meant to protect them are gutted and re-purposed for political necessity. Where the Justice department has to audit itself and FEMA is actually slang for "a joke"...where the Environmental Protection Agency doesn't even exist. And where corporate cronies can simultaneously screw over the average American...while his representative in Washington looks the other way, his wallet that much fatter.
6. And finally, If I was rooting for McCain, I could stop spending so many fucking hours just...hoping... that maybe, just once in my lifetime, I could be a witness to a history heretofore un-dreamt.
...maybe I'd be happier.
Come, my children, I am the way to happiness.
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
Frankly, I'm waiting for tonight's speech so we can have something else to talk about besides babies, multimillion dollar earmarks for a 6,700 person town, and TrooperGate.
But before that happens, we need to hear what some folks from her own party think of her, namely Peggy Noonan and Mike Murphy. Their positive words should get us in the right frame of mind...
I have confidence they aren't the only Republicans who feel that way. Didn't they learn anything from Jesse Jackson, though? Every mic is live.
Anyone have predictions about tonight's Palin speech or post-talk thoughts?
Money Quote - Republican Woman: "We used to be Republicans, but somewhere in the sixties we got lost."
Yeah, it was called the Southern Strategy. Republicans decided that they didn't need your vote to win, so they woo'd people who wanted to see you hanging from trees.
Again, I understand conservative leanings. I honestly think, were it not for the racism and corporate greed over the needs of the little guy, more blacks would consider becoming Republican.
(a) Certainly, from a religious standpoint, an argument can be made that blacks have been consistently conservative.
(b) And even in my household, the ethic of self-reliance over government assistance was very important and it's an ethic that Republicans have managed to steal in the national discourse.
(Of course we know that Republican leaning states, on average, get MORE MONEY from the government than they pay in taxes...but, shhhhh, don't tell them, it's fun to hear them pretend. Plus "Welfare Is For Red States" doesn't look good on a campaign bumper sticker.)
So I get it, guys. But I have to ask:
If most Americans agree that the current administration has screwed things up so badly, why are you continuing to put faith in them and those who support them?
Matt Drudge, origin of so much media group-think and conservative/tabloid operator is OFFICIALLY anti-Obama. He was NEVER for any democrat. NEVER. EVER. But he clearly hates Hillary Clinton and it was entertaining the way he goes after people he hates.
Well, now he's going after Obama guns blazing. Comparing him DIRECTLY to Governor Palin. The idea is to DIMINISH him by comparrison. It's like comparing J Lo to Angela Bassett. They've both done a lot a movies, so who's the better actress? The idea is that the more people juxtapose these two, the more their narratives will mesh in people's minds and, since Palin is so WILDLY underqualified, people will forget what makes Obama special...and, it puts his young face next to another young face, rather than next to the person he's actually running against.
Man, oh man, Does he have a TON of work to do. If you support him, now would be a good time to give him money.
SIDE NOTE TWO:
I was thinking a ton yesterday about how one could legitimately support Obama. I mean, you could give money, blog, talk to family and friends, cold call people in other states, put a sign up...but really, as important as all that is, it's gonna get done.
Here's what you could REALLY do.
1. Go do Virginia and help register minority and urban voters.
2. Go to Denver...do the same.
3. Go to Miami and...well, they're gonna get disenfranchised by the state government, so that's probably a waste of time, but you get my point.
At this point, the die is cast and mind are hardening on a position, so really, it's all about turnout. If one wanted to have an actual impact, one could hit the streets in battleground states and get people to the polls.
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
I have been a fan of humorist Dave Barry for as long as I can remember.
His Complete Guide To Guys remains a favorite of mine, staying on the bookshelf for a good afternoon read time and again. Pick it up if you get a sec for a good laugh.
In his (on again/off again since he's richer than God) job as a columnist for the Miami Herald, here he is commenting on the 2008 conventions.
The Palin choice is only one of the storylines that will be developing here over the next few days. Another one will be the Republicans' effort to contrast the tone and style of their convention with that of the Democrats, particularly Barack Obama's now-legendary acceptance speech, which he read from stone tablets, in which he promised the American public that if elected he would give them peace, jobs, healthcare, national security, energy independence, good schools, a clean environment, reduced government waste, lower taxes, the head of Osama bin Laden, giant underwater cities, time travel, and a magic flying zebra named ''Sparkle'' for every American pre-schooler regardless of income level.
Obama's speech was well received, but some critics felt that the stadium staging was a bit ''over the top,'' especially the chariot race. In contrast, the Republicans plan to use a simple, spare podium made from an appliance carton, with no ''show-biz'' gimmicks other than a computerized electronic display that will enable the convention delegates to keep track, at all times, of the current, up-to-the-minute number of John McCain's houses.
The one ''wild card'' element in the convention is Hurricane Gustav. The storm is expected to slam into the Gulf Coast on Monday, which has forced the Republicans to cut back to avoid an unfortunate public relations scenario on the day when their originally scheduled Daily Convention Theme was going to be ``We're Rich And You're Not.''
And Happy Monday!
Monday, September 1, 2008
No one is mentioning that FOOTBALL SEASON starts in a week, basketball is heading into pre-season soon and baseball is entering the pennant race to decide the playoffs.
Believe me, this helps the Democrats.
Most Americans would rather talk about Brett Favre than Barack Obama or John McCain. Our national obsession with sports couldn't have come at a better time.
So, with Obama leading in poll after poll, all Obama's people need to do is hold onto some of his post-convention gains during this week of Republican Convention/Spin. If he can come out of Friday with even a MODEST lead, I think most American's will tune out of the election until late October. Their minds will be made up and they, like me, are kind of tired of it all.
Also, as Bill Maher would say, to those Americans who keep changing their minds even as of today, I have no idea how you can't be sure what's going on by now or know how you plan to vote.
Do we have any readers still on the fence?
I'd love to hear your reasons in the comment section. Not kidding at all, I'd really like to know what's kept you from committing. I know we have some black Republican's and Independents who read this site, so I'd love to hear from you if you haven't made up your mind...
PS - If I was Obama's people (since I know they read this blog for advice) I would spend all week talking about Bush skipping the convention. They should be all:
Obama Spokesperson: "How do the Republicans have ANY credibility when the leader of their party is so disliked by Americans they don't even want him at their NATIONAL CONVENTION. What does that say about their leadership and goals?"