Sunday, May 07, 2006

A Note to Our Readers

Hey --
Sunday. Noon. Shouldn't have been.

Two things put us behind schedule. First I (Jim), asked (demanded) at the last minute, after Ava and C.I. had already roughed out and researched their TV review, that they instead address the Stephen Colbert issue. I didn't handle that well. My enthusiasm was overbearing and I apologize for that. (Dona asks that I add the point Rebecca made on that, which was that others could have and should have stepped in. That's for others to address.) My apologies to them.

This was supposed to be an easy issue. We had most of it mapped out ahead of time. Cedric gave a heads up to what to expect on Thursday at his site.

Then, possibly due to the thrill I'm thought to get from deadlines, overnights and rushing madly, I announce on Friday that we "must" have a Colbert commentary from them.

Why "must"? Because Ava and C.I. don't tip toe. They've offered their feminist critique from the start. They've spoken out when others have stayed silent. They've never been afraid to call it what it was. As the topic became a huge topic in e-mails, it seemed to me that it "must" be addressed by them.

So that put us behind. (They had to make calls on Saturday and figure out what their approach would be.) It also destroyed a Friday work session. (Ava and C.I. walked out -- well C.I. got off the phone and Ava walked -- smart on both their parts.) Coming off a no sleep weekend last weekend and participating in rallies on Monday, we were all tired. That's why we planned the edition ahead and hoped to be done by two a.m. when we talked throughout the week.

Didn't happen.

The biggest problem, that added four hours to this session, was the musical we provide. Was it a problem to write? No. Jess, Kat, C.I. and Rebecca had come up with bits of it during the week. I was doubtful about how it would be pulled together and C.I. came up with an outline.

The only thing we changed was we reduced it. It was intended to have more scenes and more characters. But when we started writing it, we were still thinking, "Oh we'll get sleep." So we reduced the scope. (Ty thinks it's stronger this way and I think most of us are pleased with it.)

So what was the problem? The polish. And we wanted to check spelling on that more than we usually do. But we couldn't get into it. Betty tried on her computer, Wally on his, five of us on the computer we were crowded around and C.I. as well. Finally, Mike was able to get into it.

It wouldn't scroll at a normal rate. It wouldn't open and then it wouldn't scroll. It took an hour just for Mike to read it to us, not because he reads slowly but because that's how slow it moved. Then it wouldn't publish. We'd intended to get it up quickly, to post it behind the entries it's now ahead of. But Mike couldn't get it to publish or to save to draft. Maybe it's just too long or maybe it's one of those many strange problems that pop up when we work on our editions? Who knows.

To be C.I., "Here's what we do know." Our highlights this issue:

Music spotlight: Kat's Korner "Neil Young's Living With War -- key word 'Living'"
Comite Judicial del Senado investigara afirmaciones de exencion de Bush (Democracy Now!)
Blog Spotlight: Rebecca on Goldie & Marlene's mother and daughter rally
Ruth's Public Radio Report
Blog Spotlight: Rebecca with what Kat calls "Truly, the last chance Texaco"
C.I. checks the NYT on their coverage of the immigration issue
Humor Spotlight: The Daily Jot wonders if Condi hears bells?
Humor Spotlight: "Betinna" tells you about Thomas Friedman's "Trash Dump Psuedo Politics"
Blog Spotlight: Elaine on the ones we need protection from
Blog Spotlight: Kat on music, Guns and Butters and RadioNation with Laura Flanders
Blog Spotlight: Cedric's Bix Mix on Law and Disorder and Bully Boy
Recipe spotlight: Pasta salad with avocado dressing in the Kitchen

We thank everyone for their permission to repost. And, for those wondering, due to Maria's working on the immigration issue in her area, Francisco and Miguel doing the same, there was no feature at The Common Ills that highlighted Democracy Now! headlines in Spanish and English for us to use last week. Two e-mails came in on that.

The following worked on this edition:

The Third Estate Sunday Review's Dona, Jess, Ty, Ava and me. Jim;
Rebecca of Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude;
Betty of Thomas Friedman Is a Great Man;
C.I. of The Common Ills and The Third Estate Sunday Review;
Kat of Kat's Korner (of The Common Ills);
Cedric of Cedric's Big Mix;
Mike of Mikey Likes It!;
Elaine of Like Maria Said Paz;
and Wally of The Daily Jot

Plus Dallas who did more than hunt down links this edition (though that's more than enough work), he also contributed to the musical. We thank everyone.

New content? Have we got new content!

"Editorial: Bully Boy Thinking?" came about when no one was in the mood for our planned editorial. Donna said a theme "of sorts" had emerged in the edition and at other sites during the week, so we made that the topic of the editorial.

"TV: The Urine Stains of David Mamet" is the TV commentary Ava and C.I. planned to do. They ended up doing it in addition to the other piece. They note that they wrote both in the time they usually write one so "You get twice the commentary, that's worth less than half each."
Oh, those kidders. This is Ty's favorite review of a show this year. It's a strong one and the Ava and C.I. fans will laugh and be pleased.

"Darfur" -- sometimes, probably because we all want to get done with an edition, someone sits on something. C.I. sat on this last weekend. And only brought it up either before or after we finished the editorial. Why wasn't it brought up sooner, we lamented, so we could write about it for the last edition? I begged C.I. to write it solo and put it up at The Common Ills because I was sure someone would put forth the idea. Betty was worried about that happening as well.

"Head on Home (a musical in four scenes)" last we talked about the need for new ones of thinking. We included ourselves in that. Jess, Kat, C.I. and Rebecca came up with the idea to do a musical. That's been mentioned before, Ty thinks. But they came up with the idea for one on the movement and the opponents to the movement. Their original plan was that the entire edition would be in verse. (Even the TV commentary that Ava and C.I. do.) That was a little too out of the box for some (including me) but we were agreed on a lengthy feature. It's four scenes due to time restrictions (which made us simplify) but I think we're all pleased with it. As Cedric pointed out at his site, fail or succeed, it would shake things up. It did.

"Where do you get your information?" this was going to be one thing but ended up becoming something else. It was going to be about Guantanamo and it is at the beginning. But we realized that we'd failed to note KPFA's The Morning Show. We took out some paragraphs and ended the Guantanamo section with Michael Ratner who was a guest on Thursday's The Morning Show. We then discussed The Morning Show. Not as much as any of us would have liked to (Kat especially had a ton of things she wanted included -- including Monday's regulars but neither Kat nor C.I. could remember the two women's names -- it was late, very late). It is what it is, to use Kat's phrase.

"Radio highlights for Sunday (and one for Monday)" heads up to programming you can hear online or over airwaves depending upon where you live. If you miss it's live broadcast, everything contains an archived version. (Laura Flanders' six hour show is cut down to an hour but that's an hour minus commericals.)

"Why He Took On Rumsfeld: Ray McGovern Talks to Democracy Now!" Ray McGovern talked to Democracy Now! so why are all the links we kept seeing taking us to CNN? The point of this article.

"TV commentary takes a back seat this week to Colbert" the feature that I said we "must" have. I'm tempted to add, "Thank me for it, readers." Okay, I did add that. Ava and C.I. are strong voices. That's why this was the dream topic to me for them.

"Book: Anthony Arnove's IRAQ: The Logic of Withdrawal" -- we kept meaning to note this book in a feature for two weeks and kept missing it. We'd forget. We'd remember at the last minute.
We finally have something up on it. It is what it is. (What the book is is incredible. Read it.)

"Shame of the Week (Musical)" -- we're not sure which mother started this. We know that Trina and Wally's mother were on the phone and saw the commerical on TV. We know that Wally's mother called Jess' mother while Trina spoke to us about it. We know that Jess' mother and Wally's mother (Trina's Mike's mother, by the way) called us about it. They were livid. C.I., Kat, Rebecca and Elaine walked us through the whys. Read it. We think it's pretty shameful that the song's being used in a commercial (especially that commercial.)

So that's what we offer this week.

We're tired. C.I. still has to write and post at The Common Ills. (Dona adds and speak, and catch a plane and write the "And the war drags on" entry for tonight.) Hopefully you found something to make you laugh, make you think or make you mad.

-- Jim, Dona, Ty, Jess, Ava and C.I.

P.S. This week, Ty's off vacation and back to reading e-mails.

Editorial: Bully Boy Thinking?

There's not a lot of natural Bully Boy thinking on the left.

Well, except for George Packer.

But a lot of people on the left are frustrated.

You've got elected Democrats that, as a group, offer no leadership.

You've got both houses of Congress controlled by the Republicans and the only current occupation that's lasted longer than Iraq and Afghanistan is the one that's going on in the Oval Office.

When things get bleak, you can lose hope. You can lose your will.

You can start thinking maybe life would be easier . . .

Or maybe, you can start thinking, "I'll fight and win by fighting their way!"

You're not that clever.

You're dealing what is hopefully the most crooked administration that any of us will ever see in our lifetimes.

They didn't seize power on issues. They didn't seize power on the votes. They didn't seize power through honesty.

So before you start thinking "I can out-snake them!" -- remember that you're dealing with some mighty nasty rattle snakes. These are the people who intimidate their own party.

They stop at nothing. So before you try to learn their up-is-down codebook in order to rebuild your argument in a manner that the administration can understand and waste all those hours making flash cards for the Bully Boy, stop a second and ask yourself, "What am I doing?'

We think the people carrying signs that read "Out of Iraq, Into Darfur!" really don't fit in at anti-war rally. We're all for welcoming and inclusion. But if war's your answer to everything, war all the time, we really have to wonder what you're doing showing up for a peace rally?

Strikes us as the similar to showing up at an anti-gun rally with a sign that reads "No More Pistols, Give 'Em All Uzis!"

And if you've hopped on board the Force Wagon and are joining the cry to "Unleash the hounds of hell" (Bully Boy and his mother Big Babs), we're confused as to what exactly you think will be accomplished?

Are you fan of occupation?

We don't get you.

We also don't get the rush to give props to people who have offended. In one instance, a comedian that's offended women and Asian-Americans. And when called it on by Asian-Americans and organizations representing them, his response was to mock them again.
This a hero for the left?

Maybe you're suffering South Park damage?

Or how about turning a source into a hero and allowing him to trash Cindy Sheehan? And the peace movement which isn't running along on the timetable he, a wanna be leader, would prefer?

You keep expecting him to vow, at any minutes, that he could get the peace train running on time!

He's now taken to saying Cindy Sheehan didn't sacrifice. He says Casey Sheehan sacrificed, but Casey's mother didn't. Isn't he a sweet heart?

He has a funny idea of what sacrifice is.

Like many in America, we're confused as to his relationship with children, but we'll assume he has none or he wouldn't make such an insulting remark.

He's an ass. But he's not our ass.

We didn't prop him up. We didn't promote his book. We didn't hail him as the last chance for truth, democracy and the new fall line.

But some people did.

He's a source. Hopefully, a good source. But his losing his Fox "News" job, that's not really our concern.

There seems to be some sort of "The enemy of my enemy is my friend" thinking. No, sometimes, it just means the person has two enemies.

Moving away from Military Man, there's some need to applaud Neil Young as a first. Mighty big slap in the face to those who've been singing out for some time. Exactly what's going on there? Living With War rocks, it's a strong album. We're glad it's out, we'll purchase it. We'll even play it. But we know that while Natalie Maines, Eddie Vedder and others were getting crucified by the fright-wing, Young was on pretty good terms with them.

We're glad he's realized that the war is wrong, that the Bully Boy is out of control and that he's willing to sing out. Again, we'll support that. But we won't act like he invented the wheel. He's one more link in the chain. A lot of people were singing out before him.

What's missing? In all the examples of bad thinking we're addressing, which are examples of Bully Boy thinking, what's missing?

What's always missing from Bully Boy thinking?


We think the nation could really use some right now.

TV: The Urine Stains of David Mamet

The Unit. CBS' Wednesdays. David Mamet's back to fondly stroking his favorite part of the (male) body. Hence the title, "The Unit."

Well what else will a dick write about?

Truly, Eve Ensler's The Vagina Monologues needed no male counterpoint because the world's been full of talking talking dicks and one of the loudest has been the 'creativity' of David Mamet -- a body of work which indicates some form of artistic hypospadia.

Call it The Unit, The Dick or The Tool. Just don't call it art. While Jackson Pollock splattered, Mamet just pisses and some mistake it for art. A clue for those still confused, real stage artists don't usually end up producing crap for TV.

But that's where Mamet's 'talent' has taken him. And like all 'noted' playwrights, his source material is a really lousy book by a nonwriter (Inside Delta Force by Eric Haney). (That was sarcasm.) Haney, if his claims are true (and some dispute them), often "fought for trouble wherever there's freedom" (to subvert the annoying tune to the G.I. Joe cartoon). More recently, Haney (who is also a producer of The Unit) has been critical of the illegal war. He's even come out against torture. So why he's a part of this show is anyone's guess?

Yes, it makes for a tortured viewing; however, that's not what we mean.

We mean the simple fact that the show endorses torture. Repeatedly. So is Haney full of hot air or did Mamet overrule him? If so, how did that happen?

We imagine they had a sword fight and Haney came up short.

The obsession with the penis is in full flight in the cock and bull that is The Unit.

Men stroke their missile launchers (a rotund movie critic might find that pleasing since he once lamented that Bridget Fonda didn't do just that in Point of No Return -- little did she realize that the chief goal of her performance was to provide fat critics with the means to get off). Men have cock fights, verbal when there's no real reason to go to physical, though, actually, this isn't a very physical show to begin with -- all bluster.

Scott Foley, who was utterly unconvicing in the role of Mr. Jennifer Garner, continues to provide bad performances. Possibly after being paid to do nothing week after week on Felicity he considers it a step up that he mainly walks around in silence while aiming a gun?

In fairness to Foley, there's no character on the show, not one. That's to be expected when one of the producers (Mamet) doesn't know the first thing about acting and, like far too many playwrights, is so married to the text that he fails to grasp that recitation doesn't make for riveting.

You've got a busy cast of nothings. Chief among them, serving in the WAC division, is Kathleen Noonan who's doing what she's been doing for over three decades (though it was freshest when she was Devon's mother Ellen on All My Children). Here, she's just stale, married to a general and called Katherine. (The female characters have names and use them -- must be a sign of 'softness.') Katherine comes off like a robot and then, for no reason in the text and no reason in the performance, warms up in her final scene on Wednesday's episode.

Arc of performance isn't really something a scribbler/dribbler like Mamet worries about. His entire body of work is nothing but a con game of twists and turns meant to leave the audience unbalanced and distract from how little actually goes on and how little sense any of it makes.

The male characters say things like "Damn good to see you" and "What you can't buy, you gotta' take." (We think the latter is what happened to Mamet's soul.) They're fond of the gay jokes (male flight attendents -- oh the dicks crack themselves up!). But most of all, they're fond of free balling.

We think it all plays like someone's suffering from undescended testicles, but whatever.

Used to the dinner tables scenes, are you? Not in world of Mamet where women say nothing (but may smile and gigle amused) while the men folk swing their dicks. We'd worry they might poke someone's eye out but we were told that size issues make that impossible.

So the stumpies swing what little they were given. For instance, a man tells Hector, his daughter's suiter, about when a boy showed up to take his then 16 year-old daughter out to the movies in a "Stamp Out Virginity" t-shirt.

Hector: Big decision [. . .] kill or just maim?
Man: I beat that boy all the way down the street, past the church and the police station. Beat him 'til he was in his momma's kitchen. Let him live so he could remember that beating.

Mother and daughter remain silent, but amused. (And turned on? It was the strangest look they exchanged.) We're a long way from Cliff and Clair Huxtable.

At the end of the episode, we'll go back to Hector and the man. Earlier, he said, "Hector, you look healthy enough. You got all ten fingers. You know how to squeeze a trigger? [. . .] Tell me how a young, healthy male like you can look himself in the mirror working in an office with a bunch of skirts?" Now he's found out that Hector is an elite fighter. Suddenly, the man thinks his daughter finally has some "sense." He calls Hector (who is not engaged to his daughter) "son," tells him a joke and offers to take him to a football game. (In the World of Mamet, that is third base.) During all of this the women are, again, mute as though they're Stepford Wives with a mute option their owners have elected to excercise.

Finally, the young woman, Lorrinda, actually rises and walks out. (In silence.) In the backyard, she'll confront Hector, who follows her, asking what is going on that suddenly her father is buddy-buddy with him? She'll find out that he's a "killer" (her term, send the hate mail to David Mamet) and is offended that Hector has lied to her. Her father will hover and she'll have to insist he leaves. (He's not supposed to want to bed Hector, is he?) Since the father's always close by, in her non-dramatic moment, she'll tell her father to show Hector out.

Apparently the mind, like the dick, is soft which is why we then go to a scene of Hector and his fellow "killers" drinking beer and shooting the breeze. Foley, who's earlier failed at an Irish accent, suddenly decides to channel Dr. Phil and address the issues of Hector's relationship.

"What's her concern?" Foley will ask in the midst of his own Platonic debate. "Her concern is children."

Of course it is. She's a woman in a Mamet play. A "good" woman. (The bad women just want money.) We're not doubting Dr. Foley's diagnosis. We're just noting that this has nothing to do with anything the character he can't quite fill in has done in the rest of the episode. Possibly his consolation prize for this comes in getting the money line next week: "Tell the truth or I will kill you." "I will." Not "I'll." Manly Mamet doesn't traffic much in contractions. Second only to his other hallmark, a disregard for nouns.

Nothing on the show ever makes sense. That's not because the (male) characters are busy rushing around from action scene to action scene. As his screenplay for The Untouchables demonstrated, Mamet can't do action. So there's a lot of statue moments -- where the tough guys are frozen (or just stiff armed) while nothing happens. There's a Mexican standoff at one point that plays like the scene in Reservoir Dogs minus the dazzling dialogue and the breath of life Quentin Tarantino breathed into that film.

After awhile, you start to grasp that The Unit never quite gets it up.

What it does do is endorse torture.

There's a weapons dealer that the boys go after. He's sold six stingers to "the Islamic brigade of Basra." (We'll sidestep the fact that the stingers, naturally, were made in America, ditto, because the show does as well.) It's not enough for Jonas Blane (played by Dennis Haysbert in some sort of homage to the original cast of West Side Story) to slice the dealer's face. Before he can leave, Jonas shows the dealer a photo of two children, the dealer's two children, who go to boarding school in England. Jonas informs the dealer that if he ever hears that the dealer is dealing, he will return to bring the dealer the severed heads of the two children.

Now, when the US military threatens and uses family members (women as well as men) to attempt to get information, our mainstream press (Good Morning, Dexy!) looks the other way. They avoid the topic. They do so because that's so far from what our stated beliefs are that even The Last of the Kool Aid Drinkers might blanch. Fortunately for the Bully Boy, he's got Mamet to soften up American audiences and make it seem palitable to talk of severing the heads of young children. Exactly who are the "insurgents" on this show?

Jonas has a curious fascination with children and pain. It's why, early on, when a mother and a child are threatened at gun point, he will tell his partner to leave it alone. "Sweet Jesus, not our business," he will say as a woman is shot and her body drug across the ground. Moments later, he will tell a child, "That's the last lie I want to hear from you. I'm going to mess you up real bad" and threaten to take the kid's money. The kid in question?

They'll need him to stop the "Islamic brigade of Basra." The kid will ask for only one thing (the kid's under twelve, with a dead mother and no family around) -- that if he helps them, they will take him to America. Jonas doesn't bat an eye as he promises they will. The kid asks him to swear it. Jonas will swear it.

Of course the kid's not taken to America. Jonas lied to him. ("Twists and turns!" screams the playwright who never learned about characterization.) The kid's left in the town where he's not only an orphan struggling to feed himself but, probably, a marked 'man' since it's going to be obvious who ratted out the location of the helicopter that the boys shot down. But that's our amoral world of Mamet.

Machismo means never having to work up a tear for an orphaned child. Jonas Blane probably watches Jerry Lewis telethons to laugh at the children.

If it seems as though Jonas, like every other male on the show, is working overtime to prove his manhood, blame it on the 'genius' at the wheel. It's tough growing up in the soft-pats world of Flossmoor, Illinois. Imagine if the creative 'genius' behind this trash had grown up in Hell's Kitchen? Then he might actually have something to write about. Instead, he gives us stagey talking heads who can't stop obsessing over their "unit." When you grew up middle class, in a suburb, living the soft-pats life, it must be real hard to wanna be a gangsta' so much. If you wanted to title his body of work, the perfect title would be Looking For Mr. Goodbar because Mament's in search of his fantasy male, a dream date, a wet dream, that never really existed. Like many a bored and spoiled kid of the suburbs, he wasn't impressed with his own family. (For the record, unlike many mothers in Mamet's work, his own mother had held a job.) So he took to the 'tough guys' on black & white TV and thought it would be all so much cooler if they just stood around talking. (He was a very verbal child.)

It's not reality and it's not art. It's a writer with a bad case of hypospadia. We suggest toilet training, if not surgery.


Darfur. Genocide? Homocide?

We'll operate under the premise that it's genocide. (For an alternate take on that read Gary Leupp's "Out of Iraq, Into Darfur" at CounterPunch.)

So it's genocide.

And what does that mean?

At the NYC rally and march against the illegal war in Iraq, for some that meant carrying signs reading "Out of Iraq, Into Darfur."

Oh, is that how it works?

The last Saturday in April saw a huge, long planned march in NYC against the war and Monday was long ago penciled in for immigration rallies in your own area. So we were a little surprised to see those advocating for Darfur (apparently military action) pick the Sunday between for their rally. As Elaine noted, C.I.'s thoughts on that were, "If you've got the Monterey Pop Festival on Saturday and Woodstock on Monday, you don't try to squeeze in Live Aid on Sunday."

Right or wrong, it did seem to be squeezing in a bit much. C.I. attended the DC rally (a favor/marker called in) and the "Out of Iraq, Into Darfur" signs were even more plentiful than they were at the NYC rally. The crowd wasn't as large. And not a lot of anti-war types. Which may be why they can advocate military action.

Military action? A region that the US would love to get its hands on (due to the natural resources) and some want to go begging to the Bully Boy to send in NATO? Elaine noted the tragedy of that misbegotten notion on April 18th.

The Force Wagon pulled up and, based largely on The New York Times reporting (and op-eds of big cry baby Nicky K), said peaceful solutions didn't work. Hadn't worked for three years, people! It was NATO time! US led, of course.

Well, excuse the hell out of us, but when in the last three years has The New York Times worked? The James Risen article that they sat on for over a year? Or maybe that reporting by the likes of Judith Miller and her cohorts? Or maybe the sliming of Hugo Chavez? Or the creative work of Brian Lavery?

Woah there, Force Wagon rider, we'll need a little more than The New York Times to get us to march off to war.

And here's another thought, since Afghanistan and Iraq are only successes in Bully Boy's mind, what exactly are you pinning your hopes on?

Another long occupation?

No, sorry. If someone's crashed your best friend's car, if they've crashed your romantic partner's car and then they come to you for the keys, you don't hand 'em over. (That's almost Thomas Friedman logic, but we'll go with it.)

You don't.

You don't say, "Okay, this person has crashed two cars but I know they'll take care of mine." You hide the keys. You say "no."

But the force wagon wants a thrill ride.

"We must act now! Lives are at stake!"

Lives are at stake all over the world. People are dying (from war, starvation, inadequate medical attention) all over the world. We're glad you've picked up a cause. We just don't see war as the first resort.

And that's what is it because, if you'd look beyond your New York Times, you'd grasp that there has been no serious effort on the part of the United States to address the issue in non-war terms. They've played around and messed around and joshed and joked.

We were quite comfortable saying "No more war" and leaving it at that. We've seen what Bully Boy unbound can do.

But last Sunday, as we were finishing up, C.I. mentioned something in passing. What? That was our reaction. (Second reaction, "Why didn't you bring this up sooner!")


We want to you to stop a moment and think about the Jews killed in gas chambers, murdered for being Jewish (a long with the gays and lesbians and the Gypsies).

That didn't happen in one year. The death camps weren't set up before the United States joined the WWII war effort.

That drug on for some time. During that time, people in this country and outside, begged the United States to do something. (Begged The New York Times to do something, which is why C.I. brought it up.) And nothing was done. Oh, excuse us, refugees attempting to find sanctuary here were turned away.

So all you shit kickers on the Force Wagon, what exactly are you ready to do?

You're willing to send others in to fight. (Such bravery from the arm chair set.) But is that your only solution?

Had the United States not looked the other way, six million Jewish people might not have died. You can figure out your own percentage that might have lived.

But we looked the other way (something the Force Wagon wants to accuse everyone that's not screaming with the blood lust for one more war for the United States) and, worse, refused people entry to this country.

So Darfur's a genocide.

That's an emergency.

What do you do in an emergency? Do you send in a SWAT team to handle a fire? Do you send in Homocide to handle a heart attack victim?

No. You send in rescue workers.

So, if you can hop off the Force Wagon for just one damn minute, here's an idea to consider: mass extraction.

Those at risk, extract them from the country.

Your other choice is a long occupation.

Now maybe you're happy to send people to their potential death but you get a little antsy about letting 'foreigners' into the United States?

Well that's really your problem, isn't it?

UN's there already. Send in more and start extracting. All the nations of the 'developed' world should open their borders.

If it is a genocide, we're not disputing that or supporting that, then you get them out of there.
A genocide's a crisis, to put it mildly.

Troops on the ground may reduce it but it won't stop it.

So you go in and you offer relocation to the victims.

Now it might put a few nations out. It's easier to send in force then to welcome someone by opening your borders. But isn't that really helping?

If you don't like the idea that's fine. But we've said no to another Bully Boy led (from afar) war.
Afghanistan and Iraq have not demonstrated a concern with human lives or a high regard for them. They have demonstrated a lust for never ending occupation.

But if you don't like the idea, come up with your own. We didn't sit around and think, "What would Bully Boy do?" We went out of the box. (One professor, when told of the idea last week, said it was pre-Bully Boy thinking.) So why don't you try that?

Instead of more guns, more bullets, more deaths and more occupation, why don't you try asking yourself how you would deal with the situation if the government had a real leader?

The most annoying thing about Nicky K is how he bends, bows and scrapes before the Bully Boy (while claiming "left"). He trashes the left (feminists are a particularly favorite scapegoat of Nicky K's). He wants action! So he buys up a woman in slavery. (They give Pulitzers to slave buyers now, apparently.) He wants action! So he thinks like the Bully Boy and calls for war.

Never ending war. Exactly how many more countries have to be at war for WWIII to start?

Again, you don't have to like the idea. We're assuming many won't because it's far easier to send people to die then it is to welcome by opening your borders. That was true in the 1930s and 1940s and it's true now. But after Kosvo, we really think you should be embarrassed to suggest NATO. It's popular with the Bully Boy, true. So is warrantless spying.

Will you next endorse that to get your way?

You stand for what you believe in or you don't. Speaking only for ourselves, we would prefer to never see another sign, banner or t-shirt reading "Out of Iraq, Into Darfur." Find another forum your cause. The peace movement, the anti-war movement, doesn't need to be diluted with cries of "End this war so we can start another!"

And you're fooling yourself if you think that's not what would happen.

[Read Gary Leupp's article. He's the only one we've seen besides Elaine that's addressed the cries from the blood lust crowd. Also check out our four scene musical this edition.]

Head on Home (a musical in four scenes)

So this week, we tried to something different. It's lyrics to a musical in four scenes. Does the peace movement stand for something? Who are the heroes? What we will resort to in crisis?
Does the musical address that? Maybe. But we certainly see reasons to ask these questions based on what we see around us.


Scene I

On a darkened stage, a light comes up to reveal a poster sized photos of several news photographs documenting the violence in Iraq.

A young man, DAKOTA, steps forward with a guitar. He looks at the photos, then looks around. Clears his throat and tunes his guitar briefly.

Strumming he begins to sing in a soft, melodic voice.

Dakota: You had a lot of dreams,
A lot of big plans,
That never got to see
The light of day.
Doesn't much matter
It was bound to fail anyway.
Think it's time to head on home
Head on home
Think it's time to head on home.

FIVE STOCKY MEN wearing dress slacks, bow ties and t-shirts with the Bully Boy's picture on them march out on stage.

Five Stocky Men: Stay the course
Of course!
Stay the course
Of course!
We can't bail
On the bottom line
What are you
Stay the course
Of course!
Stay the course
Of course!

Five Stocky Men march off stage.

Dakota remains. He stands in front of a large sign that reads "TROOPS OUT NOW."

He continues to sing softly as people walk by. Some stop and listen, many force themselves to hurry past without looking.

Dakota: You had a lot of big dreams
A lot of big plans
That never got to see
The light of day
Doesn't much matter
It was bound to fail anyway
Think it's time to head on home
Head on home
Think it's time to head on home

TIFFANY, stands watching, very impressed. She nods to people encouragingly. Many avoid her and move on. In the end, only she is left standing and listening as Dakota finishes singing.

Tiffany: Alright, alright
Out of sight
We can win it tonight.
Okay, okay
All the way
We can end it tonight.

Jess: It's not that easy
We need many more
Many, many more
To end this war.

Tiffany moves around the stage, singing, as people walk around.

Tiffany: I can do it!
I will fight!
I can do it!
I know what's right!

Spotting a group of THREE PEOPLE painting a banner, Tiffany moves over to them.

Tiffany: Head on home!
Don't you think the troops need to head on home!
Head on home!
Don't you think the troops need to head on home!

Three People: We are agreed.
But we can't lead.
We are waiting for our Senator.
We are awaiting our Senator.

SENATOR, in a really bad pant-suit with overly sprayed hair, bounds across the stage. Three People spot her and lift their banner as Tiffany watches.

Three People: Senator, Senator!
Senator, Senator!
Senator, Senator!

As Three People close her in, Senator flashes a phony smile.

Senator: Well what's this?
My constituents.
I love each and every one.
Now tell me
Will you vote for me?
You know I'm going to run.

Three People: Senator! Senator!
Senator! Senator!

Senator: Darfur?
Marines must catch a ride.

Three People look at each other, slap their foreheads and nod enthusiastically.

Senator smiles at Three People. She begins skipping with Three People following.

Senator & Three People: Darfur
Marines must catch a ride.
We're off to war.

Dakota shakes his head in disgust but Tiffany eyes Senator & Three People longingly. They skip over to her as they sing.

Senator & Three People: Darfur
Marines must catch a ride.
We're off to war.

Tiffany: Well I got something to add
This talk makes me so glad
Time to head on home
And send 'em on out to Darfur
Time to head on home
And send 'em on out to Darfur

Senator & Tiffany & Three People: Darfur.
Marines must catch a ride.
We're off to war.
Time to bring the troops home
And send 'em on out to Darfur.
Time to bring the troops home
And send 'em on out to Darfur.

Dakota grabs his guitar and walks off in disgust. The stage goes dark.

Scene II

People stand around onstage chattering nervously. Some carry huge crosses. Slowly they divide into two groups, with the group carrying crosses moving stage right and the other group stage-left.

As they part, we see Senator standing in the middle with a big smile on her face and Tiffany off behind her holding a sign that says "Send the troops to Darfur."

Senator: May I say this?
Dear constitutents,
I can out man any man.
May I say this?
Dear constitutents,
I'm the only one with a plan.
Look at Iraq
Or call it "Irot"
And ask yourselves
Just what we've got?

Five Stocky Man walk up nervously, taking in the crowd and listening.

Senator: May I say this?
Dear constitutents,
I feel your pain.
May I say this?
Dear constitutents?
Let me parcel out the blame.
I voted for the show of force
Of course, of course

At the words "show of force" Five Stocky Man nod to each other excitedly.

Senator: But it was not my plan
And it's gotten out of hand.
May I say this?
Dear constitutents,
I fight to win
May I say this
Dear constitutents
Bring 'em home and send 'em out again.
I have stones you see
So vote for me

Tiffany: And the senator will get us into Sudan.
March us into Sudan.

Five Stocky Men: May we interject:
That you're just perfect
Let us finance your campaign
May we interject:
We love your rhetoric
We can tell you feel our pain.

Five Stocky Men begin tossindg down dollars in front of Senator who leaps on them and begins rolling around as Five Stocky Men continuing tossing cash. Waving her arms, Tiffany whips up the crowd.

Tiffany: Darfur.
Marines must catch a ride
To Darfur
We're off to war.

Five Stocky Men continue to throw money on the Senator who continues rolling around in it.

Five Stocky Men: We're off to war!
We're off to war!
Get the word to
The factory floor.
We're off to war!
We're off to war!
Speed up the assembly line
More and more!
We supply the weapons
That's what we're for!

ALL: Darfur.
We're off to war.
We're off to war.
Marines must catch a ride
We're off to war.
We're off to war.

Five Stocky Men: We've made money
Now we'll make more
We'll profit from the war
We'll profit from the war.

Scene ends as the stage darkens.

Scene III

We hear explosions. Bombs going off. Gunfire.

The lights come up and we see a nervous Tiffany standing next to a weary Senator.

Tiffany: Have you checked the casulties?
Or checked the fatalities?
The news is not good.
Have you checked the polling stats?
Or noticed the bailing rats?
The news is not good.
From Wall St. to the hood --
The news is not good.

We hear boos from off the stage. Senator reaches into her pocket and pulls out a some cash to wipe her sweaty face with.

Senator: I gave them what they wanted
What they really, really wanted
What everyone wanted
Now I am left haunted.

Tiffany: By the casualties?
Or by the fatalities?
The news is not good.

Senator: No, by the polling stats
And by the bailing rats.
The news is not good.

Tiffany gasps. Boos continue to to come from offstage.

Tiffany: But people are dying, ma'am
Children are crying, ma'am
We have to give a damn
We have to give a damn.

Senator begins dancing across the stage. The music grows louder drowning at the booing.

Senator: Listen honey
I give a damn about money
Give 'em blood for money
Even mud for money
Do it for the money
Screw it for the money
Gonna do it all
Gonna get it all.

Five Stocky Men walk in carrying newspapers. They point to the front page.

Five Stocky Men: The news is not good.
The news is not good.
But business is booming
The economy is improving
So the life's we are losing
We can live with that.
We can live with that.
If you stay the course,
Of course!
Stay the course
Of course!
We will keep supporting you
Never be avoiding you
We will keep funding you
Never be avoiding you
We will keep backing you
With our big bucks.

Senator: Aw shucks,
I think I feel your pain.

Five Stocky Men toss cash into the air at Senator.

Senator: Aw shucks,
I'm starting to feel your pain.

Five Stocky men toss more money at the Senator.

Senator: Aw shucks,
I really feel your pain.
Let me explain,
I love you just the same
As even the littlest of little guys.
Let me explain,
I'm a principled dame
I give you what the money buys.
Let me explain
That the blood may rain
But I know where my interest lies.
Let me explain
I know this game
I give you what the money buys.

Tiffany shakes her head in disgust and walks off stage while Five Stocky Men bow and blows kisses to Senator.

Scene IV

Tiffany walks onto the stage and sees Dakota strumming his guitar. He sings with YOUNG COUPLE singing along. She rushes up to them.

Dakota & Young Couple: You had a lot of dreams
A lot of big plans.

Tiffany: I still do!
I still do!
You know it's true,
I still do!

Dakota puts down the guitar and looks at Tiffany.

Dakota: You danced with a snake.

Tiffany: I made a mistake.

Dakota: You chanted peace and pushed war.

Tiffany: I only wanted to do more.

Dakota and Tiffany stare at each other.

Tiffany: I only wanted to do more.
I only wanted to save lives
Lives were at stake,
So I made a mistake.

Dakota: Worse than that
You threw it all away
To play war hawk for a day.
Now what do you say?

Tiffany: I was working from within
And it did me in.
What more can I say?
I got carried away.
What more can I say?
I got carried away.

Before Dakota can reply, Senator walks across the stage with a crowd following her.

Senator stops, turns and faces the crowd.

Senator: May I say this,
Dear constitutents,
I will make a very good president.
May I say this,
Dear constitutents,
I will make a very good president.
Yes, we're in a mess --
A very , very big mess.
But I can pass the test,
Oh I can pass the test.
May I say this,
Dear constitutents,
I deserve your vote of confidence.
May I say this,
Dear constitutents,
I'm the only choice that makes good sense.
Vote for me.

Five Stocky Men: Vote for her!

Senator begins dancing around the crowd with Five Stocky Men following her.

Senator: Vote for me.

Five Stocky Men: Vote for her!

Senator: Vote for me
And you will see
That I have a plan
I got us out of Irot
And into Sudan
I can do it
I can do it again.

Five Stocky Men: Vote for her!

Senator: Vote for me.

Five Stocky Men: Vote for her!

Senator: Vote for me.
And you will see
That a woman can be president.
I will set the precedent.
I will be the testament.

Five Stocky Men: The very best invest-uh-ment
The very best invest-uh-ment!

Senator: Vote for me.

Five Stocky Men: Vote for her!

Senator: Vote for me.

Five Stocky Men: Vote for her!

Senator: Vote for me,
It's a vote for you!
Vote for me,
It's all about you!
Vote for me,
I feel your pain!
Vote for me,
Jump onto my train!
Vote for me,
It's a vote for you!
Vote for me,
It's all about you!

Senator spots Tiffany.

Senator: Vote for me,
Tell 'em, Tiffany.

Tiffany walks up to the crowd.

Tiffany: The Senator works hard,
The Senator works long.

Dakota shakes his head. Senator hugs Tiffany.

Tiffany: The Senator works hard,
The Senator works long.
It takes a lot of work,
To get it so wrong.

Senator gasps.

Tiffany: The Senator works hard,
The Senator works long.
It takes a lot of work,
To get it so wrong.

She walks over to Five Stocky Men.

Tiffany: She works for him, and him, and him, and him, and him.
She takes money from him, and him, and him, and him, and him too.
She takes order from them.
She betrays you.

Senator: May I say this,
Dear Constitutents,
From my experience,
When a woman talks like this
She's got P.M.S.
Or can't stand the thought
Of women presidents.
Catty girl,
That is her.
Catty girl,
That is she.
Vote for me!
Vote for me!
Vote for me!
Vote for me!

The crowd goes wild and begins cheering for Senator who beams. She sticks a hand behind her back and Five Stocky Men place cash in it while the crowd continues to cheer.

Tiffany walks over to Dakota. They look at Senator.

Tiffany looks at Dakota and they share a shrug.

He picks up his guitar as Senator begins to march off the stage, followed by Five Stocky Men and the crowd.

Senator: Vote for me!

Five Stocky Men: Vote for her!

Senator: Vote for me!

Five Stocky Men: Vote for her!

Dakota: You had a lot of dreams
A lot of big plans
That never got to see
The light of day.
Doesn't much matter
It was bound to fail anyway.
Think it's time to head on home

Dakota & Tiffany & Young Couple: Head on home

Dakota: Think it's time to head on home.

Tiffany: One more time!

Dakota: You had a lot of dreams

Dakota & Tiffany & Young Couple: A lot of big plans

One person breaks from the crowd. Followed by two more. They walk over and join Dakota, Tiffany and Young Couple in singing.

All: That never got to see
The light of day.
Doesn't much matter
It was bound to fail anyway.
Think it's time to head on home.
Head on home.
Think it's time to head on home.
Head on home.
Think it's time to head on home.

Where do you get your information?

NEW YORK - May 1 - Today cooperating attorneys with the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) are headed to Guantánamo to meet with their client Saleem Adem for the first time, in response to a Friday ruling by U.S. District Court Judge Richard Roberts ordering the Defense Department to grant the attorneys access. The ruling denied the Bush Administration's motion for reconsideration, effectively rejecting the administration's attempt to deny the detainee access to counsel for months (Adem v. Bush). Mr. Adem had been asking for legal assistance for over a year.
"Today the court affirmed what we have been arguing for years - all people have a right to counsel and due process. This case shows the Bush Administration must stop stonewalling justice and allow all detainees' access to attorneys. It is encouraging that the court is asserting its traditional role to oversee unchecked executive power," said Gitanjali S. Gutierrez, a CCR staff attorney. CCR estimates that the administration has prevented attorney meetings with at least 270 persons in Guantánamo.
Judge Roberts also rejected the administration's position that the Detainee Treatment Act stripped the court of the authority to construe rules on client access. The original ruling in Adem v. Bush was handed down by U.S. Magistrate Judge Alan Kay on March 21, 2006. He ruled that Mr. Adem must be allowed to meet with his attorneys, and that the Bush Administration's efforts to delay and prevent such action could render the detainee's "right to counsel meaningless." The Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), which currently oversees 450 pro-bono attorneys representing the detainees, applauded the decision as an important protection of due process.
According to recent estimates, the government is currently detaining about 490 prisoners at the Guantánamo Bay prison camp.

The above is from the Center for Constitutional Rights' "Attorneys Go to Guantanamo Today after Judge Upholds CCR Victory in Ruling to Grant Detainee Access" (via Common Dreams).
Remember Guantanamo?

Maybe not. Last Sunday, we saw people gather in DC to address Darfur. Have they addressed Guantanamo?

It's not just Guantanamo, as anyone at the Center for Constitutional Rights can tell you. Appearing on KPFA's The Morning Show Thursday, Michael Ratner noted the secret prisons and Bagram. Yet, The New York Times, on Saturday, reports on the questioning (we won't call it an investigation) the United States is facing at the United Nations for the practice of extraordinary rendention. (Or, as Albert Gonzales prefers to call it, "rendention.") Suddenly Tom Wright wants to refer to the process of "reported." And documented?

It does matter where you get your information. KPFA's The Morning Show, had Matthew Rothschild as a guest on Friday, reflecting on The Progressive and the state of the country. They had Daniel Ellsberg on Thursday talking about the need for whistle blowers to come forward. Did you read about it in The New York Times?

No. KPFA's The Morning Show airs Monday through Friday from seven to nine a.m. Pacific Time. You can listen online if you're not in the broadcast area. (Listen online for free.) The hosts are Andrea Lewis and Philip Malderi. Every half hour, Sandra Lupien does the news breaks. David Bacon provides the labor report each Wednesdays. That's only the start of the regulars. You get authors (nonfiction and fiction, Jane Smiley was a recent guest). You get film makers. You get debates and discussions on topics such as the environment and immigration. You get discussions on Iraq. The war, like sexuality and race, is not a topic the show runs from. Think of it as a smarter version of what the broadcast TV networks air each morning -- one that doesn't insult your intelligence. You get Reyna Cowan on Fridays (except during pledge drives, she'll next appear on the last Friday of this month) discussing film. You've got callers asking questions. It's a lively mix. (Never a dull listen.)

So if you're looking for a radio show that can fill your needs and haven't found one yet, consider checking out KPFA's The Morning Show, Monday through Friday, seven to nine a.m. Pacific time.

Radio highlights for Sunday (and one for Monday)

"It's Sunday and I'm so not into bad forensic shows or bad soap operas. I guess I better head to the video store."

Not so fast!

You're reading this online. Are you able to listen online? If so, there's a host of programs today that you could listen to (as well as one on Monday). Maybe you're curious about Paul Robeson? Maybe you know he was blacklisted (or "whitelisted") and wonder what he sang like? You can find out. Or maybe you're in the mood for a good play? Maybe you'd like to know what the state of today is for African-American literature? Or your issue is the right to vote? Or you keep hearing "Iraq is not Vietnam!" and "Iraq is Vietnam!" and you're thinking, "Forget the war strategy a moment, what was it like during that period on the homefront?" Or you're looking for perspective on the immigration rallies and the anti-war march in NYC? Or maybe you want to hear some thoughts on the US and Islam? You can hear all of that and more. No need to go to the video store and find, again, that everything's been checked out except Captain Ron and Big Bad Mama.

Sunday on KPFA (Berkeley): (9:00 am Pacific time, noon Eastern time, host Larry Benksy)
In our first hour...
From the streets, to...where? A look at what's next for three movements, each of which saw major protests this week in the U.S.: Darfur, Peace in Iraq, and Immigrant Rights. How will activists turn protests into votes, legislation, and results on the ground?
In our second hour...
Between 4 and 5.3 million Americans have lost the right to vote due to felony convictions. Some temporarily, others permanently. The majority of them are Black and Latino men. How does this affect the democratic process in America?

5:00 pm
Gregg McVicar says farewell to Earthsongs! Please join us for this special last show.

6:30 pm
Radio Chronicles

See all Drama and Literature Programming
What do James Brown, Martha and the Vandellas, the Rolling Stones, and a stay-at-home mom in Berkeley have in common? They all contribute to a special Radio Chronicles mix on the Vietnam Era featuring story tellers from Stagebridge, the nation's oldest senior theater company. The Vietnam War, a cataclysm that reminds us in some ways of the raging, seemingly endless quagmire in Iraq. Vietnam, set against the background of the Cold War, spawned a culture of resistance to militarism and imperialism and, its flipside, the neglect of human priorities at home. And communities of color became hotbeds of protest as the reality of racism and economic oppression became starkly juxtaposed against heavy losses of young men sent out to kill a foreign "enemy" that had never called them derogatory hateful names.

7:30 pm
Act One Radio Drama
Ric Salinas, Richard Montoya & Herbert Siguenza together were born as Culture Clash in the Mission District in 1983. Based in Los Angeles since 1990, Culture Clash have been making people laugh for over two decades. Subtitled 'Culture Clash Invades Miami,' 'Mambo' is as fast and funny as its predecessors, and a great showcase for the performers' skill at quick-change character sketches. But it's also more cohesive and sharper in its exploration of the all-American syndrome that gives the group its name. It's 90 minutes of sharply etched - comic, serious, unsettling and thought provoking - portraits representing the many cultures that make up Miami: Cubans, Jews, African Americans, Haitians, Anglos and all.
Act One celebrates Cinco De Mayo by presenting L.A. Theatreworks production of "Radio Mambo" tonight. Sit down and relax, you have the best seat in the house.

Sunday on WBAI (NYC):

11:00 am-noon: The Next Hour
Elizabeth Nunez hosts this hour on the future of literary fiction and literary poetry by Black writers. With guests Lorraine Logan and James Ferguson of the African American Book Club for the Visually Impaired and poets Gregory Pardlo and Erica Doyle.

6:30-7:00 pm: Equal Time for Freethought
Robert Dreyfuss, author of Devil's Game: How the United States Helped Unleash Fundamentalist Islam.

9:00-11:00 pm: Everything Old is New Again
This Sunday we feature the music of Paul Robeson. Some of the songs from his career that we will hear: "St. Louis Blues, Shakespeare's Monologue from Othello, "Solitude," and of course, "Old Man River," and more.

Air America Radio:
RadioNation with Laura Flanders (heard over the traditional broadcast airwaves, on XM satellite radio and online -- airs from seven to ten p.m. Eastern time Saturday and Sunday nights)

Did coverage the largest protests in US history help us better understand immigration problems and solutions? And what about those anti-war marches? Then, Jane Jacob's urban wisdom and what makes a great neighborhood?
ROBERTO LOVATO, Contributor to The Nation and New America Media.
SIMEON BANKOFF of NYC's Historic Districts Council.
REVEREND BILLY of the Church of Stop Shopping.
Plus a few surprises.

Monday on KPFT (Houston, TX):

Tune in Monday May 8 (First day of Membership Drive) for a Special Encore Presentation of "This American Life" with Ira Glass, featuring Ray Hill and the Prison Show.

Why He Took On Rumsfeld: Ray McGovern Talks to Democracy Now!

JUAN GONZALEZ: And when Secretary Rumsfeld responds about the troops believing that there were chemical weapons, because they were wearing uniforms or chemical suits. Your response?
RAY McGOVERN: Well, talk about that disingenuity. I mean, sure, they wore chemical [suits], because Rumsfeld and his generals ordered them to. This proves nothing, other than they went through with this charade. The Australian troops wore no such protective covering, because they knew there were no weapons there. The Australians knew these weapons were a figment of the propaganda put out by our Defense Department, so they blithely went in there without any protective covering. So it was all a charade.
And I suppose the good news is that finally someone had a chance to ask Don Rumsfeld -- if I were in Washington, I never would have got into a session where Rumsfeld spoke. I have to give him credit that he took questions and answers. But, you know, it's really interesting that when I walked into the place, I wrangled a ticket very surreptitiously. I was met with this little blurb on Donald Rumsfeld, and as I read it, I had to chuckle. It says, "There's going to be a question-and-answer period, but please adhere to these guidelines. Refrain from using the word 'lie' in relation to the war in Iraq. Do not question the secretary's personal responsibility for torture. And please don’t discuss first use of nuclear weapons against Iran. If you violate these guidelines, you'll be immediately removed from the auditorium, flown to an undesignated prison location somewhere in Eastern Europe and tortured. Thank you for your cooperation. The World Cannot Wait." A wonderful, wonderful group. Those were the folks that spoke up and tried to brace Donald Rumsfeld with the lies and their charges of him being -- and he is, arguably -- a war criminal. And we shouldn't shy away from saying that.

That's from Amy Goodman and Juan Gonzalez's interview with Ray McGovern ("Retired CIA Analyst Ray McGovern Takes on Rumsfeld Over Justification for Iraq Invasion") who confronted Donald Rumsfeld (Secretary of Defense) at an Atlanta speaking engagement. Among other questions, McGovern asked Rumsfeld, "And so, I would like to ask you to be up front with the American people. Why did you lie to get us into a war that was not necessary and that has caused these kinds of casualties? Why?"

It was an important moment. But we surfed around and see links not to Democracy Now!'s interview but to CNN's. Was there a fear that Anderson Cooper might burst into tears if he didn't grab a healthy portion of online shout outs?

It's interesting because this is the same CNN that's failed the viewers and now wants to spit in their faces with the hiring of Glenn Beck. Having seen the net prop up Aaron Brown throughout his mediocre reign at CNN, we're puzzled that so many are back in the prop up game?

Independent media interviewed Ray McGovern. But for some reason the "natural" response is to go to CNN?

We can talk about supporting independent media and it's importance but it's meaningless if, when we can choose between or corporate media, we give our traffic to corporate media.

If you missed the news of McGovern, the link above will tell you all that you need to know. If you learned of it outside of independent media, we'd suggest you utilize the link and support independent media.

Call it "indymedia," call it "alternative media," call it whatever you care. But until we're willing to support it, reference it and utilize it, we're enabling the corporate media.

TV commentary takes a back seat this week to Colbert

We didn't want to touch this topic for a number of reasons, but chief among them is that dying in front of an audience is never easy. Some have the ability and talent to pull it off. Some don't. When the death is unintentional, the best thing to do is to avert the eyes.

Stephen Colbert died April 30th. It was a slow painful death.

The closest approximation to it is a "routine" that nearly killed Chevy Chase's career. In both instances, it wasn't due to being "nasty" or "mean" -- it was because they lacked the ability to pull the moment off.

Steve Martin could have taken any of the lines Colbert delivered and made them funny. Colbert isn't Martin. It's the same reason Jon Stewart can't hit out of the park when he hosts the Oscars, there's really nothing to pull an in-person audience in.

On The Daily Show, Colbert is doing Cher from her first attempts at co-hosting a variety show -- ignoring the audience and interacting with Sonny, er Stewart. When the marriage broke up and Cher went solo, she had to learn to relate to the audience.

Colbert can't. So you were treated to a lengthy monologue that wasn't shaped (no highs, no lows, just a steady drone) though it had been rehearsed at length.

It was like watching the kid who shows up at school on Monday repeating the funny lines from Saturday Night Live.

There are a number of reasons those attending were offended and one of the chief ones was that Colbert just wasn't funny. He can do sketch comedy, he couldn't work up delivering an entertaining monologue last Sunday.

Dennis Leary could have done the routine word for word (though we think he would change it some -- at least "wife" to "spouse") and it would have been funny. It has to do with the quality that makes someone a star and someone a second banana (or worse). Colbert has no sparkle. There is no quality that pulls you to him.

In its best moments, the monologue had some genuinely funny lines. They were written funny. They just weren't delivered in a funny manner.

Nor did the routine breathe as Colbert plowed from one joke to the next. It was an amateur trying to entertain and, don't let American Idol fool you, that's rarely entertaining or amusing.

Some are offering the opinion that it was meant to implode as though Colbert was the next Andy Kaufman if not the next Lenny Bruce. That's not reality. The act was supposed to "kill" but the only death was Colbert's.

The mainstream media took a pass on Colbert in their coverage of the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner. There a number of reasons for that. One reason is that many felt insulted. Another reason is that it wasn't funny and, having been insulted, to then call Colbert out for not being funny would seem like so much sour grapes.

Someone comes to your home and spits on your dining room floor, you don't make an effort to sing their praises (or publicize the occurrence). Which is what happened. The dinner was supposed to be about the press. It was as though Colbert had gone to a banquet for Little League baseball and done twenty minutes on coaches molesting their charges.

That does happen. And what Colbert was commenting on, the suck up nature of the DC press, is very real. But if you're going to insult your audience and expect them to laugh, you better do it with some style.

Colbert had none in evidence.

Not everyone present knew who he was. (We spoke to fourteen people who attended the dinner for this article.) Those who did know of him vaguely were a little more informed than many handing out shout outs and back slaps online.

Editor & Publisher (as Rebecca pointed out) was among those leading the charge for "Why aren't they talking about this!" Editor & Publisher took a pass on an offensive remark he made.

Let's go back to the Little Leage analogy because it's almost a sports analogy and conventional wisdom lovers love those. Let's say you're a young girl or parent of one attending. You have a right to feel that you or your daughter is included because she's demonstrated that she can play Little League. So when the entertainer's remarks render her invisible, you have a right to be offended. (Four we spoke to used the term "outraged.") Which is what happened when Colbert went down a list of daily events in the life of a member of the DC press including "Make love to your wife."

This routine was written in advance, it was rehearsed and rehearsed. There's no excuse for that line making it into the "performance." At a time when Jill Carroll's kidnapping is still a point of discussion within the press, rendering all women invisible with that sexist remark wasn't a way to endear.

It was offensive. (Rebecca's gone into why at length.)

The prop-giving net doesn't want to tackle that. They want to look the other way. The same way they look the other way (or maybe they're just not informed) on how offensive their celebrated hero has been to Asian-Americans. "Ching-Chong Ding-Dong" may have entertained our shout-out netties, but it didn't entertain many Asian-Americans. And there was talk, before Colbert went on, about "Ching-Chong Ding-Dong" and why the man infamous for that was speaking at the dinner?

(Why was he chosen? Because someone like that really does help set the tone for a Bully Boy America.)

Colbert flopped. Flop-sweat flowed from him. There's not much expected at the dinners. It's why a Baby Cries a Lot or Mark Russell can garner polite chuckles. Neither man's set the world on fire. They're pedistrarian, but they are comics.

Colbert isn't. He's a writer. He's a television performer. He's not a successful standup comedian and the routine was as painful to watch as Colin Quinn's attempt at anchoring Weekend Update on Saturday Night Live.

Reciting lines is not a performance.

But we saw (again) the most ridiculous nonsense as people on the left rushed in to prop up the performance as one of the funniest in recent times.

That's offensive. It's offensive not merely because we have enough delusions in Bully Boy's America without the left and supposed left adding to the mix.

It's offensive because it frequently seems these days that everything (anything?) a man does gets trumpeted. Take a speech given on the TV show Boston Legal. Now James Spader's character's speech deserved applause (but Spader didn't write it, folks). However, the same week, there was a much more meaningful moment on ER that addressed the war. There were no hosannas coming from our quick-to-give-shout-outs net for that moment. One involved a White male and the other an Aisan-American woman. Was that the reason?

Whatever the reason, the applause for Colbert is a bit like when the left worked itself into a lather trying to give Howard Stern props. It wasn't enough to merely wish him good luck in his battle with Clear Channel. We were supposed to find him "funny" as well.


It's amazing how willing some of the left are to lower their standards. They'll say they're inclusive. They'll say they welcome all races, ethnicities, sexual orientations, genders (male, female and trans) but let any group object to the way they're portrayed and suddenly it's: "Where is your sense of humor!"

Howard Stern's offensive. We don't think it's offensive in the manner that should lead to fines, we do think it's offensive in the manner that people should think twice before singing his praises.

It's the same thing with Colbert.

"Where is the line?" Ruth asked.

It's a good question. He's offended Asian-Americans with stereotypical characterization but we're supposed to overlook that. He made a sexist remark in his overly praised non-performance and we're supposed to overlook that as well.

Exactly where is the line?

How desperate are we for heroes?

Not desperate enough to note Parminder Nagra's Dr. Neela Rasgotra. Looking High and Low for heroes apparently means looking White and Male.

A net so quick to ignore Nargra while they rush to applaud Spader surprises no one when Colbert's treatment of Asian-Americans and women is overlooked as they rush to cheer: "What a man! What a man! What a man!"

It's offensive. Democracy Now! aired the clip. With the sexist remark. It's a news broadcast. Their angle was no one was talking about it in the mainstream. We could understand that, we could've lived without it, but we could understand it.

We couldn't understand the need for a (White) gay male to note the "performance" on a non-news show. (Note it more than once. And sing its praises.) We'll assume when Colbert goes off on gay men, radio guy will want us to have his back? Why he thinks that's warranted after he's looked the other way with regards to sexism and racism, we have no idea. Friday, CounterSpin played the clip. CounterSpin is a program that evaluates, offers critiques. So it was distressing when they played the clip with no comment on the rank sexism. (It was also embarrassing considering that Monday's immigrant rallies across the nation were among many worthy topics to examine that got lost around the net as so many played rally 'round Colbert -- who, for the record, wasn't under attack. This wasn't 1991 and he wasn't Roseanne.)

We'll repeat: How desparate are we for heroes?

We must be pretty hard up. Maybe that's because we're looking for the Great White (Male) Hope?

This is a pattern that's emerging. A woman does something and she's not noted. (A woman of any color, any sexual orientation, any ethnicity.) A White Male (presumably straight) does something and we're supposed to overlook racism and sexism as we rise for an online standing ovation.

It doesn't cut it.

Just as with the DLC attempts to Whiten and Male-Up the Democratic Party, we see something similar happen online. Whether it's because people are uninformed or they just don't care, we have no idea.

Intentionally or not, a message is sent and people are offended -- the people who've been fighting all along, not the ones hopping onto the bandwagon. But apparently they're as unimportant to many online voices and sites as they are to the Democratic Party.

We're seeing a similar thing with regards to Neil Young's album. Like Kat, we both think Living With War is a great album. ("We" is Ava and C.I. for those who don't read carefully before penning their hate mail.) But it's really strange, this need to obliterate all the voices that have been raised in song against the administration to act as though Young's the first. That includes independent artists (who possibly aren't as well known, it doesn't appear that independent media is widely known on the net -- but that may just be due to the fact that so many seem keen to set themselves up as playas -- watch closely as the new Michael Kinsleys and Cokie Roberts are birthed before your eyes) as well as mainstream audiences.

Young is building on the work of others -- and we don't just mean the strange similarities to Bruce Springsteen songs circa Born in the U.S.A. We're happy to welcome his album. We're just not willing to act as though Michelle Shocked, Green Day, Ben Harper, Anais Mitchell, Michael Franti, Patti Smith, Rickie Lee Jones, Cowboy Junkies, Bright Eyes and others haven't already been exploring the territory.

We hope others follow Young's example but we won't say we hope they follow "Young's lead" because he's following the path that many others have paved. We'll listen to the music and enjoy it for the music and the passion but forgive us if we're a bit wary of embracing Young. Hopefully, his eyes have opened. But we're not going to act as though his past actions and statements didn't take place.

Angry Military Man (incestually related to Eurythmic's "Missionary Man"?) has taken a very long leak on the peace movement. He's now doing it in public and we keep hoping he gets picked up for indecent exposure. (Yes, that works on many levels.) But the only reason he's in the position to pull it out and splash is because the left treated him as Jesus, Buddah, Goddess and Muhammed. Most human beings have value (we'd say "all" but then we're confronted with the administration). You can learn from, and take from, many. You don't need to cheerlead them and set them up as the voice of the left -- especially not at the expense of true voices of the left.

But that happens repeatedly. We're not sure whether it's just a hunger for heroes in bleak times or if it's a concentrated effort to designate the "acceptable" as heroes?

We do know that Angry Military Man has taken repeated jabs at Cindy Sheehan and is only growing more emboldened and vocal. That's because he's allowed to. Why he is allowed to, why he's not called out on his crap goes to heart of the problem. The efforts to rehabilitate Neil Young, Stephen Colbert or Angry Military Man aren't efforts about the peace movement.

If a leader emerges, that's wonderful. (And many have.) But this need to knock the people who came before and set up others as leaders is offensive. It's only more so when you notice that the ones who keep getting set up are (no surprise) White Males.

We think Bully Boy (with the help of many) has retooled the United States into a masculinist vision. We're aware that, as one friend said on the phone regarding the press dinner, "Maybe after six years, we're unable to think except in the framework he's imposed?" (He being the Bully Boy.) That's a danger. We respond on the same level the Bully Boy acts. And we all go "round and round in the circle game." (Nod to Joni Mitchell, "The Circle Game.")

We can stop it. But it won't be with dishonesty. It won't come from lying that someone was amazing when they weren't. The Bully Boy already traffics in dishonesty and delusion, there's no need for any elements of the left (on any point of the spectrum) to follow suit.

As another told us, "I wasn't expecting any form of tikkun olam, I was expecting to be entertained and wasn't." That's reality. When you've left the reality-based community and moved over to the world of Bully Boy, we're not sure how much help you are to anyone? When you whitewash "hate and call it love" (with another nod to Joni Mitchell, "Dog Eat Dog"), we're not sure if you're doing it because you're caught up in the cycle or you just don't give a damn about many in this country.

When CounterSpin airs the comments of someone the Asian-American community has been calling out for months (and his on air "apology" only inflamed the issue more), we find it sad. When the aired comments include the sexist remark with no critique of it, we scratch our heads.

We think the left has compromised itself quite enough in terms of party politics over the last forty years and fail to see how compromising ourselves with regards to the voices we choose to highlight and grant attention to helps us break that pattern.

The sexist remark in the speech wasn't sponatenous. It was written ahead of time and rehearsed ahead of time. It was intended, not tossed out. Ignoring it doesn't serve anyone. It doesn't serve a cause (be it the left or press criticism), it doesn't serve the audience (which is made up of more than White Males). It does send a message, intended or not, and the message is: "Laugh or shut up! We need this White Man more than we need you!" We don't see that message turning out crowds at the next demonstration.

Book: Anthony Arnove's IRAQ: The Logic of Withdrawal

BY NOW IT IS CLEAR that most Iraqis want the United States to leave. From mainstream media accounts, though, most observers could be forgiven for belieivng that only an isolated minority of senior Bathists, foreign fighters, and nihilists is standing up to the United States. "As if to underline their misunderstanding of the world, American military spokesmen call Iraqis who are resisting their invasion 'terrorists.' Who else on earth would call a man who fights a foreign soldier in his own country a terrorist?" the journalist Charles Glass wrote presciently only weeks after the invasion.
The term foreign fighters is a mantra at almost every U.S. press conference on the war. It is a sign of the level to which the propaganda for this war has been internalized by the establishment media that no one blinks at such proclamations. In the standard usage, however, U.S. troops, who have traveled thousands of miles to invade and occupy Iraq, knowing in most cases not a word of Arabic or a thing about Iraqi culture or society, are not foreign fighters and are not "interfering in Iraqi affairs" (the charge repeatedly leveled by the United States against Iran, Syria, and Jordan).
"We've made clear we would oppose any outside interference in Iraq's road to democracy," White House spokesperson Air Fleischer told reporters, without a trace of irony, in April 2003. In other words, the world should stand aside and let the United States determine Iraq's future.

So opens chapter five (pp. 55-56) of Anthony Arnove's IRAQ: The Logic of Withdrawal. It's a small book, 105 pages of text (plus a seven page introduction); foreword and afterword by noted historian Howard Zinn. (Zinn and Arnove have collaborated before). So those who pick Robert Fisk's most recent book (or Noam Chomksy's) and think "There's no way I have time to read all of this" have no excuses. (Both Fisk's The Great War For Civilization: The Conquest Of The Middle East and Chomsky's Failed State are recommended reading.)

What do you get? Eve Ensler says (on the back cover), "An impassioned, unflinching case for immediate U.S. withdrawal." That about says it all.

But we're dealing with a nation of elected officials and gas bag pundits who say that Bring the Troops Home isn't an option. They've said that for three years. Three years, they've waited for the turned corner never grasping that the occupation has no corners, it's one thin line straight to hell -- for Iraqis and foreigners.

Foreigners includes the US. A point Arnove makes that might even reach out to the ones who feel any decisions on changing course in Iraq should come from elected officials and/or The Council on Foreign Relations. That's only one of the many realities the author illuminates.

Special attention should be paid to the eight reasons for immediate withdrawal:

1) The U.S. military has no right to be in Iraq in the first place.
2) The United States is not bringing democracy to Iraq.
3) The United States is not making the world a safer place by occuyping Iraq.
4) The United States is not preventing civil war in Iraq.
5) The United States is not confronting terrorism by staying in Iraq.
6) The United States is not honoring those who died by continuing the conflict.
7) The United States is not rebuilding Iraq.
8) The United States is not fulfilling its obligation to the Iraqi people for the harm and suffering it has caused.

Our intended readers will nod along with those points and probably be able to offer support for many without reading the book. But for the unintended, if the above has blown your mind or caused you to blow your stack, you can read pages 67-83.

The war's not ending tomorrow. Or the day after, or the month after. The only thing that will end the war is the people. Arm yourself with knowledge by reading IRAQ: The Logic of Withdrawal. As politicians make noises to try to indicate that they are 'responsive,' they'll co-opt language to cloak continued occupation. This book can prepare you and arm you for the battle.

Shame of the Week (Musical)

We can't call it shame of the week because it's been a shameful week. But in terms of musical moments, it has to win the cake.

Burger King has a new commercial. Where men walk around singing of the joys of wrapping their mouths around a piece of meat.

Would that they would go there! It might make for an interesting commercial. Instead, they just mean shoving some burgers down their gullets. You get priceless gems (that's sarcasm) about turning their innies (belly buttons) into outies.

These faux gems are made offensive by both what's shown onscreen and, more importantly, by the music the gems are set to.

Onscreen, the boys (they aren't men) "send up" feminism. Or some idiot's notion of feminism. (They burn their briefs because, like many, they've bought into the myth of bra burnings.) as this anti-feminist piece of crap plays out, you may recognize the melody the boys sing (and dance to): "I Am Woman."

In fact, the lead chorus boy announces, at the beginning of the commercial, "I am man, hear me roar" as he rails against "chick food."

For those too young to remember, Helen Reddy recorded "I Am Woman." Reddy and Ray Burton wrote this number one hit (1972) which went on to become a feminist anthem. When she accepted the Grammy for Best Pop, Rock and Folk Vocal Performance, she thanked, among others God: "because She makes everything possible."

Reddy had gotten involved in the feminist movement and wasn't finding any songs she felt reflected "the positive sense of self I'd gained from the women's movement." So she wrote the lyrics and Burton wrote the music. The song showed up on I Don't Know How To Love Him (her 1970 debut album). In 1972, the song made two appearances in a new form. Reddy changed the lyrics somewhat (including adding a last verse and singing "I can do anything" from "I can face anything"). The song popped up in Mike J. Frankovich's Stand Up and Be Counted and on her (1972) album I Am Woman.

Reddy charged Frankovich a fee -- a donation of three thousand dollars (a thousand to women's centers in Los Angeles, Chicago and New York). For years, Reddy refused to allow the song to be used in commercials. The United Nations was allowed to use it for International Women's Year (a token payment of one dollar was made). But that was it. The reason Reddy often gave was that the song was too important to her.

Now it's used it a commercial that mocks the women's movement and uses non-feminist terms like "chick food." The woman who refused to perform on Dean Martin's show because she found it exploitive now allows her "anthem" (a movement's anthem) to be used in a commercial that mocks the movement?

You and me against the world, Helen? Seems like you've crossed over to the other side.

We'd suggest that, as she wrote in "I Am Woman," that there's still "a long, long way to go/ Until I make my brother understand." We're not seeing how mocking the women's movement or allowing a song that has remained an anthem to be turned into a joke helps anyone.

Should she re-record the song, we'd suggest she change the line "Yes, I've paid the price" to "Yes, I have a price."

Shame of the week, musical.

Music spotlight: Kat's Korner "Neil Young's Living With War -- key word 'Living'"

This is the first of at least seven musical commentaries Kat will be doing at The Common Ills.  ("None this morning," she says.  "I'm too tired to read over the completed ones."  It's been a long night.)  Here she is on Neil Young's latest.

Kat's Korner: Neil Young's Living With War -- key word "Living"

Kat: Thank God for Neil Young. He's the first one to give us what we've all been wanting. The one that takes on the Bully Boy.

You buy that crap in the previous paragraph? Sometimes rewritten history is enough to turn you off reality. For instance, revisionist history doesn't note that Neil Young was quite happy to support the Patriot Act at a time when artists like Rickie Lee Jones were raising their voices. Rickie Lee took on the Bully Boy. So did Green Day. So did Pearl Jam (in the past and on their new self-titled CD). And of course Bright Eyes, the Rolling Stones, Cowboy Junkies and many more. In terms of a sense of how America's has changed, you need only listen to Tori Amos' Scarlet's Walk to hear a journey across an America rotting from above. Those artists are far from the only ones who have spent time among the living in the last six years.

Is this just another case of White Male Boomer soaking up all the credit others have earned? If this is the case, accepting that myth means overlooking John Fogerty's Deja Vu All Over Again. Guess Fogerty came out swinging too soon? Or someone didn't take their ginco biloba?

So Neil Young's not the first. I think we've established that.

The album?

It's got a lot of things going for it.

Neil Young's pissed off. He's usually more interesting when he's pissed off. ("Helpless" not withstanding.) He's rocking with the kind of noise he hasn't kicked up in some time. Though he's arriving late to the party, he's making quite an entrance.

Living With War is the name of the album. You can currently listen to it in full online.

"After the Garden" is the first track. It's a strong track to kick off the album and you may think it's your favorite.

Won't need no shadow man
Running the government
Won't need no stinking war
Won't need no hair cut
Won't need no shoe shine
After the garden is gone

It features some strong drum work and Yong's lamenting in a manner that suits his voice. The strong drum work is actually a hallmark throughout. Muscially, it rocks better than the best tracks on Sleeps With Angels.

"Living With War" (title track) is next up and it may be time to reconsider your favorite song.

I take a holy vow
To never kill again
To never kill again
And try to remember PEACE

What makes this song for me? Two things: again the drums and the vocals. The vocals sometimes seem to chant and sometimes seem to sing. If that's Young and only Young via overdubs, I'd be surprised but he's been seriously messing around in the studio since the eighties, so who knows?

The song's about how "we kill and we're killed again" as we live with war (in our hearts) day after day. The theme will be carried throughout the album.

"Restless Consumer" is Young's "The Ghost of Tom Joad." Which is actually a good reference not just for the song. Springsteen hangs over the album. Check the musical similarities between "Living With War" and Springsteen's "Working On The Highway." Or between Springsteen's "No Retreat, No Surrender" which "Families" owes a musical debt to. (Corey Hart's "No Surrender" already owes Springsteen a lyrical debt.) Young mixes it up a bit by borrowing from the melody of Bob Dylan's "Chimes of Freedom" for "Flags of Freedom."

That's not nitpicking. Most songs and artists borrow. (It's outright theft that causes problems.)
He's even borrowing musically from his own work for "Roger and Out."

So what have we got here?

He has the most talked about album of his career. Whether he decided to allow people to listen to the album online to force the release (as some rumors say) or to get his songs out quickly, it's worked. There's an interest in his work, an excitement, that's not been present for some time.

At my local Tower, I asked how his catalogue was selling. I was told a number of people have been coming in asking for Living With War and that his Greatest Hits collection has shown a considerable increase in sales. (Living With War can be purchased as a download currently. It hits stores May 8th.)

It was a smart move. Not just in terms of marketing. What he's done is force everyone interested to basically act like a reviewer in the seventies with limited access to an upcoming release. You can listen. Under his conditions. Which means you listen from start to finish (unless you stop the stream). There's no option of picking the track you want to hear (or going back to one when it's finished playing). You hear the entire album in order.

All ten tracks. It's a concept album and the tenth track only works on the first few listens. (It's "America The Beautiful.") It provides the "light" at the end of the tunnel. Whether or not it's "cinematic," it will be the track that has you reaching for the remote in a few months. It's a traditional arrangement and what might have served the album better is a radical reworking of the song such as what Tori Amos did to Young's "Heart of Gold" on Strange Little Girls. Tori's version of "Happiness is a Warm Gun" appears to have had an impact on Young's "Let's Impeach the President."

Lopping off the "light" (final track), you've got Young's strongest album since the seventies. The man who cheered on the Patriot Act (and war with "Let's Roll"); the man who, let's be honest, had nothing to say for years, finally has something to say. There's none of the insulting point of view that marred Sleeps With Angels (where Young truly felt he had went "to heaven" which was apparently defined by a "Trans Am" and a 'cheery' view of the homeless). He's back among the living.

The vocal sneer (sometimes snarl) has allowed him to get away with a great deal over the last two decades. But nothing's been able to rescue his lyrics for some time. As he's repeatedly attempted to play the cowboy, it's been less and less a return the early highs of CSNY and more like Glenn Frey-lite. Pissed off has frequently led to vocals and music that almost saved songs with lyrics that many couldn't relate to. (Unless you, too, were a millionaire looking for a 'Purchase of Gold' -- frequently taking home a "Piece of Crap" or not.)

Neil Young came back down to earth lyrically. Music needs him, we need him. This is a brave album for any number of reasons including theme. But what may be most brave is the refusal to work and rework the songs (there's a reason David Geffen once sued him). There are nods to the work of Springsteen and Amos. The heart may not be gold but it's pumping. So much so that no one need turn to the sixites to give him a shout out (as he does to the year 1963 to shout out to Dylan in "Flags of Freedom" -- sad but true, you do have to go that far back to shout out to Dylan).

May 8th the album comes out in stores. I could download it now but I won't. I'll wait until Tuesday and purchase it. I've listened to it repeatedly online. That hasn't weakened my desire to own Living With War which is probably the highest compliment you can give music these days. I'm not sure how it will fare up against Ben Harper's incredible Both Sides of the Gun on my own stereo but, hopefully, they can live side by side, if not in perfect harmony.

Talk is cheap. Use Yahoo! Messenger to make PC-to-Phone calls. Great rates starting at 1¢/min.
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
Poll1 { display:none; }