Sunday, October 26, 2003

GO SEE Night of the Living Dead@!@!

presents a stage adaptation of Night of the Living Dead. Featuring some of the madfuckingeniuses involved with their version of Reservoir Dogs. Hal Robins & John Hell lend their voices to this production, in addition to the likes of Bucky Sinister, Jon Fast and Paul Addis onstage. And your not-particularly-humble author appears in a pre-recorded segment. I havent' seen it yet, but all the reports back have been very positive.
Check the Spanganga
homepage for warning n' such (and, fyi, the vegetarian I know who saw it had no problem). Check the dates and ticket availability here, the
show runs through November 9th.

Two articles on Texas re-districting

The Washington Post delivers two insightful articles on the Texas Republicans re-districting powerplay. The first
deals with the legal issues involved the Democrats have filed suit claiming it to be unconstitutional and illegal; citing several experts, the article's thrust is that this is uncharted legal and constitutional territory. The other article covers
the diversity on the political spectrum of the Democrats who would be ousted by the news districting scheme--including some who vote with GOP frequently and who benefit the state by their senority.

If you are curious and want to geek (yes, as a verb) about more general redistricting stuff, there are links here to
all manner of redistricting sites, including those for each of the 50 states (hmmm, not quite Maine seems to be missing, I wonder why. Indiana makes up for it by having several sites for some reason). Here's
the California site
which has links to redistricting in the news stories, and maps of 2002 party registration by country which is interesting to look at.

I now know more than is useful about this. From here on I will begin purposefully forgetting it.

Wednesday, October 01, 2003


That's right, I'm bringing my First Frickin' Fridays series to an end this Friday. I'll have the wonderful help of omnimedia maven Univac. We'll make fun of Ahnold and show cool videos and play great music. You can show up and drink. :) Come out to 21 Grand this Friday.

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

How to share power during the occupation from Slate

"On Saturday, the leaders of France, Germany, and Britain will meet in Berlin to discuss how to deal with the U.S. request for postwar assistance. This news flash bears repeating: Our key allies over the past half-century are meeting to form not a common Western position on how to deal with Iraq but a common Western European position on how to deal with us—and in a form that does not include any Americans. Meanwhile, France, Germany, Belgium, and Luxembourg are putting together a European defense force independent of NATO (i.e., free of U.S. control). "

Wunderbar, n'est-ce pas? Fred Kaplan writes the War Stories column in Slate (and the occassional article on a Thelonius Monk re-issue. I never miss one of his articles (for long). He offers great insight on the military machinations of our nation and others. And suggests much more diplomatic and sensible solutions than our administration would ever bother to consider.

Here's the New York Times article on the upcoming meeting between France, Germany and Britain. Meanwhile, Josh Marshall asks what does hording contracts for U.S. companies including Haliburton & MCI have to do with our reticence to share control in Iraq?

Tuesday, September 16, 2003

Assertive Hill tests Bush veto

Promising news. This article tracks a recent wave of Congress defying the WHouse's agenda. Overtime, travel to Cuba, and turning back new FCC regulations all got enough support to carry them through despite threats of a veto. This is an excellent sign for the return of checks and balances instead of the partisan dictatorship we've been living through with Republicans controlling both houses and lockstepping with that creep in the Oval Office. Here's another article on these developments from Christian Science Monitor.

Saturday, August 30, 2003

A nice review of BBB in NYC says these four performers exemplify true collaborative and ensemble work. Of course they are talking about Gulag Ha Ha which won Best of Fringe last year in San Francisco, and has completed its run at the NY Fringe Fest. Dublin will be the next town to recieve the dark absurdity of Gulag, but in the meantime the Banana Bag & Bodice are debuting their new work "Sandwich" here in San Francisco next week. The SF Fringe fest, unlike the ones in Dublin and NYC, does not sell advance tickets; you have to show up 30 minutes before the show and buy them. I'll post more details here soon about all the Fringe shows that I reccomend you check out. I'll also be making an appearance in the fest this year with tHE nEO-sURREALISTS, hang on for more details.

Have you been to Attaboy's site lately?

Attaboy is a good friend of mine and a great artists, so occasionally I like to remind people to BUY HIS STUFF, to support his work and because it's great.
His website has stuff on sale And even some on pre-sale, available SOON: Axtrx, the first toy based on one of his characters, which is featured on the front page of; also Attaboys' 2004 Calendar, which will be on sale at Tower Records (but it's better to buy direct from the artist!!). Buy those and other Attaboy goodies (like limited edition, signed prints for only $20!) from his site.

Also, 5 Attaboy posters are up on which is a pretty cool site. Lookit Attaboy's Yumfactory for all of this and more (like KISS).

Monday, August 25, 2003

GWB's Rambo dialogue bears brutal fruit

From an editorial in Friday's Washington Post:

And consider our president's statement on July 2 in response to a question about attackers targeting our troops. "Bring 'em on," our president declared. "We've got the force necessary to deal with the security situation." Mr. President, they're bringing it on.

Saturday, August 23, 2003

Post 9/11 Manipulations Come to the Surface

I wish it was surprising. A 155-page report released late Thursday reveals that the EPA's post-9/11 air quality reports were edited by Bush's National Security Council

The Environmental Protection Agency's internal watchdog says White House officials pressured the agency to prematurely assure the public that the air was safe to breathe a week after the World Trade Center collapse.

History will look back in disbelief that they got away with it. I think that we may be seeing the ultimate (to date) perversion of the vision of this country's founders. I don't think that's an exaggeration at this point. There has been incompetence and corruption before. But the willfull manipulation and the sheer greed for power and total control, this is the stuff of Saramon. Keep in mind that "they" (and this time "they" has a name, it's Karl Rove, who has taken it upon himself to become the svengali of the Conservative pro-business anti-tax at all costs and with a fundamental Christian bib on to boot) are trying to consolidate power in all 3 branches and in every department. This broad, coordinated strategy relies on the fact that the small set of people who pay attention, protest and publicize things like attacks on civil liberties, loosening of enviornmental protections, and undermining of programs to support those less fortunate (like, say, veterans!!!) can't be everywhere at once. It's unlikely that even a more competent and less complicit press would cover say 3 stories a week in that realm--overseas violence is much more Hollywood-style attention grabbing. The audience needs to have a context (either existing knowledge or be given one in the article), for each of these stories, and it's just too dry too often even for the serious newspapers (let alone the tv news, which has the massively larger audience).

Really our only hope is if we can get a big juicy scandal, ala Watergate or Iran Contra (we can't rely on them to do anything sexy, so that's right out). We need something that would go well as a tv movie or mini-series, something that frontline will cover. Oh dear, we really are so screwed.

Wednesday, August 13, 2003

Tribunals breed some controversy

About 660 prisoners captured in Afghanistan and elsewhere are being held at Guantanamo without charges or access to lawyers — some since January 2002.

Britain is seeking to intervene on behalf of its two citizens who are being held at Guantanamo Bay. Some concessions have been made, including not seeking the death penalty. The American Bar Association has objected to some aspects of the tribunals. The ABA has published this report of recommendations regarding Treatment Of Enemy Combatants. Read more on the administration's treatment of detainees and their vision of a trial by tribunal, which includes eavesdropping on suspects' conversations with their lawyers.

Monday, August 11, 2003

Some political links

A selection of political bits I've chomped lately...

There is a breaking scandal (let's hope that turns into a double
entendre) regarding Pentagon players meeting with a notorious Iranian
arms dealer, an alumnus of the Iran-Contra skull-duggery:

While Rumsfeld said that the contact occurred more than a year ago
and that nothing came of it, his aides scrambled during the day to
piece together more details amid other reports that Rumsfeld's account
may have been incomplete.

Fred Kaplan's columns on Slate are consistently insightful inside scoops on military issues.
He's debunked hype on the past and current generations of
Patriot missile systems
, this Pentagon's flawed War Games, the coalition of the billing and
amongst others, not to mention calling the administration to task for wrong-headed (and contradictory) policy
toward N. Korea. I suggest spending some time with his archives, when you have a chance.

Kaplan's most recent
deals with (the latest) failure in the Missile Defense program.
This one *should* make it clear that is not a practical option any time soon,
and we should stop acting and spending like it was. Should, if
sane minds were in charge; if only sane minds were in charge...

Doonesbury has had some fantastic strips recently pointed toward the
SecOfDef, really nailing Rummy's rhetorical parrying technique and skewering it appropriately. There are about a week's worth of strips focused just on Rummy-speak.

A recent article in the Washington Monthly detailed the Bush administration's distrust & dislike of science and scientists.

The administration's stem-cell stand is just one of many examples,
from climate change to abstinence-only sex-education programs, in
which the White House has made policies that defy widely accepted
scientific opinion. Why this administration feels unbound by the
consensus of academic scientists can be gleaned, in part, from a
telling anecdote in Nicholas Lemann's recent New Yorker profile of
Karl Rove. When asked by Lemann to define a Democrat, Bush's chief
political strategist replied, "Somebody with a doctorate." Lemann
noted, "This he said with perhaps the suggestion of a smirk."

Now there is a formal Democratic inquiry (and website!): The minority staff of the House Government Reform Committee is
continuing to investigate the state of scientific integrity in the
Bush Administration.

We can thank Rep. Henry Waxman who is also the leading congressional watchdog on tobacco policy both then (1994) and now. Time and time again Waxman's name comes up to boldly question industry-oriented policy. More like him, please.

Sunday, August 10, 2003

Pictures from FFF 7!

Scott Beale of Laughing Squid has put up online photos of FFF7 featuring Ralph Carney and Bucky Sinister. Check 'em out!!

Saturday, July 26, 2003

THIS FRIDAY: August 1st

First Frickin' Friday #7:

Ralph Carney


Bucky Sinister

doors at 8:30pm

show at 9pm(ish) at

21 Grand in Oakland

This will be an incredible show!!! Ralph is an amazing horn-player, who started with Akron pre-post-punk sensations Tin Huey and went on to become a regular in Tom Waits' band as well as playing with everyone from William S. Burroughs to Galaxie 500.
Locally you may have seen him play with Mr Lucky or the Oranj Symphonette. Check out his website for more on him and his brand new solo album. Ralph will play live and talk about his music, his instruments, the Tin Huey reunion, and a whole lot more!!

Bucky is a fixture on the San Francisco spoken word scene. His book King of the Roadkills was published by Manic D Press, and his work is featured in the The Outlaw Bible of American Poetry (amongst such writers
as Jack Micheline, Diane DiPrima, and Jim Carroll). He also recently appeared in the stage version of Reservoir Dogs at Spanganga Bucky will read from his work to begin the evening.

For all you San Franciscans who need help finding the East Bay, once again the BART Pool will be in effect to help you. Stay tuned for more details.

Tuesday, July 15, 2003

What there is to hide

Ashcroft is defying a court order and not allowing Zacarias Moussaoui to accused 9/11 plotter Ramzi bin al-Shibh. Once again the man who leads our nation's law enforcement blatantly defies the law as he sees fit. I will tell who what my suspicion is as to why he won't allow the questioning, two :

In court papers, the department said Attorney General John Ashcroft had determined that testimony from the accused terrorist Ramzi bin al-Shibh, a confessed participant in the Sept. 11 attacks, "would necessarily result in the unauthorized disclosure of classified information" and that "such a scenario is unacceptable to the government."

The government has said Mr. bin al-Shibh is being interrogated at a secret place overseas.

Mr. bin al-Shibh is very likely being tortured right now, in whatever "ally" has conveniently lenient laws to allow it. If he were produced for this case then he would let the world know what atrocities he'd been submitted to. I feel pretty sure that this is the case. And I can understand that some people would in fact be pleased to learn that those responsible for 9/11 are being tortured. But that's not what this country was founded on. And it is in difficult times like these that it is MOST important for us to stand by our principles. If not then we undermine their integrity. I can't believe these people are running my country!

Saturday, July 12, 2003


I have been re-miss in not promoting it ahead of time here. It is going on RIGHT NOW!!! This year it is a 24 hour event and features as incredible a lineup as ever. I missed the cult leader brown bag lecture series, which I am quite bummed about. But there's a whole other stage show this evening starting at 8pm(ish).

I am proud to sat that I have participated in Dadafest in every year since its inception in 1998. 6 of 'em. This year's theme is disaster preparedness, which is unfortunately ripe with inspiration in this country right now. My 2p:

Dont' trust the government.

Trust the people making fun of the government.
Or the other people making fun of the government.

There are so many to choose from!!!

LATE BREAKING NEWS: The Cult Leaders lecture series will be happening at 4pm at Dadafest!! I haven't missed it yet after all!!! See you there!?

cool, it's faster!! Plus there's a built-in help now. How long has it been since I linked to those Blogger people? Too long, I'd wager. I'm glad they're (still) free. And I envy them for working for Google.
New blogger interface. This only affects me, don't worry. Only a test.

Saturday, June 21, 2003

Correction and WMD and FCC

A link in my last post, the one to John Judis' article on the lessons on Imperialism from Woodrow Wilson, was wrong. Apologies. It's corrected, and still above. Great new piece co-written by Judis in The New Republic on the WMD issue came out this week. Of course, TPM has good bits on it.


...the Senate Commerce Committee [approved] bipartisan legislation that will roll back the Federal Communications Commission's June 2 vote that relaxed media ownership rules.

But it's not over yet. The public outcry led to the Senate's action (the phrase Moving with unusual speed has been used), and the continuing raising of voter voices will keep the pressure up for this to pass the
The Senate bill would in fact even force Clear Channel to divest themselves of some of their holdings!! It's almost enough to make you briefly optimistic.

If you don't, yet, care about this issue, I humbly suggest reading up on it. Want a quick course? Here are the Top Ten Conglomerates (The Nation) and a broader run-down of Who Owns What (from the Columbia Journalism Review). Remember--this is with current rules!! They'd like to let it consolidate more!! I just wrote a letter to Powell. Maybe I'll post it later. For now bye. I'll chat more soon.

Tuesday, June 03, 2003

Recommended reading

Yesterday both TPM & Altercation highly recommended this article by John Judis in The National Review (which is noteworthy cuz at least Alterman has remarked on the relative conservatism and pro-administration stance in TNR's editorial pages these days). It's a critique of the new US imperialism by way of the OLD US imperialism and Woodrow Wilson's response to it. I'm parroting here. I haven't yet read it, but I trust the pointers.

I was not familiar with John Judis, per se, though I think I've read him before. It turns out he was a member of SDS , which is great, so Todd Gitlin isn't the only
frontline 60's radical who has graduated to pundit status. I haven't the read the article above, but Judis also has an excellent piece in The American Prospect it's an up-to-date analysis and historical & philosophical perspective on the Iraq invasion. And not as heady as it sounds, well-writ, straight-forward, a great article. Read it!!

Saturday, May 31, 2003

Mass Deception about Weapons of Mass Destruction

Who does Bush think he's fooling? He said yesterday in Poland "we found 'em". Two trailers with some sophisticated equipment which could have been used in numerous pursuits, are the extent of the imminent threat that Iraq posed? How can you not say now that this man is actively lying to this country and the world? From Slate actual details on the trailers themselves and what wasn't found that would be required if these actually are the mobile labs we're looking for. Much more details that GWB would ever give, because they don't fit his lies.

Friday, May 30, 2003

Are you ready for the new spin?

According to TPM the new spin to explain the lack of found WepsOMassDest
is that it's the fault of Colin Powell and the State Department not Rummy, Wolfy and the other 50 Chicken Hawks. Heaven forbid! Clearly Colin is the one running the show, right? Who do they think we are? We're the American public! We don't fall for disinformation. It's not like 41 percent of Americans either believe that W.M.D.'s have been found, or aren't sure. is it? Is it? What? OH SHIT!!!

READ THIS column by Paul Krugman. It cites recent developments such as:

This week a senior British intelligence official told the BBC that under pressure from Downing Street, a dossier on Iraqi weapons had been "transformed" to make it "sexier" — uncorroborated material from a suspect source was added to make the threat appear imminent.

In England they actually care about this shit--witness this editorial from the Financial Times. Also
from today's NYTimes, Nick Kristoff says that members of the intelligence community are outraged and demoralized by the politicization of the intelligence gathering process. Here's a quote:

Some say that top Pentagon officials cast about for the most sensational nuggets about Iraq and used them to bludgeon Colin Powell and seduce President Bush. The director of central intelligence, George Tenet, has been generally liked and respected within the agency ranks, but in the last year, particularly in the intelligence directorate, people say that he has kowtowed to Donald Rumsfeld and compromised the integrity of his own organization.

That would seem to belie the spun assertion above of the State Dept. being to blame for the WMD strawmanship. Don't believe the spin. Don't trust anyone inside the beltway!

Want more? Seymour Hersh in the New Yorker has been doing some of the most important investigative coverage during this time. His article Selective Intelligence sheds light on the Rummy-led undermining of the established intelligence community; the plan: install your own and only listen to people who tell you what you want to hear. Like Ahmad Chalabi and his Iraqi National Congress. These guys have been getting funding from the CIA for years, except that they've worn out their welcome there, and now Sugar Daddy Rumsfeld has taken them on as a convenient, English-speaking figurehead for pro-American (um, call it pro-Administration) Iraqis. Too bad they have no constituency in Iraq itself. Anyway, here's a stunning quote from Hersh's article:

A former Bush Administration intelligence official recalled a case in which Chalabi’s group, working with the Pentagon, produced a defector from Iraq who was interviewed overseas by an agent from the D.I.A. The agent relied on an interpreter supplied by Chalabi’s people. Last summer, the D.I.A. report, which was classified, was leaked. In a detailed account, the London Times described how the defector had trained with Al Qaeda terrorists in the late nineteen-nineties at secret camps in Iraq, how the Iraqis received instructions in the use of chemical and biological weapons, and how the defector was given a new identity and relocated. A month later, however, a team of C.I.A. agents went to interview the man with their own interpreter. “He says, ‘No, that’s not what I said,’” the former intelligence official told me. “He said, ‘I worked at a fedayeen camp; it wasn’t Al Qaeda.’ He never saw any chemical or biological training.” Afterward, the former official said, “the C.I.A. sent out a piece of paper saying that this information was incorrect. They put it in writing.” But the C.I.A. rebuttal, like the original report, was classified. “I remember wondering whether this one would leak and correct the earlier, invalid leak. Of course, it didn’t.”

Read the whole article. And if you're still hungry, check out this article on Rummy vs. The Men in Uniform, and this earlier piece on Neo-Conservative War Profiteer Richard Perle.

Wednesday, May 28, 2003

When's the last time you BLOGged?

me? It's been awhile. EEEeek. Over a month, actually. Been busy. Full of the things and events that life is full of: birth, death, marriage, divorce, art, love and New York City. More on many of these soon.

Immediately upcoming, Danielle and I are participating in a panel discussion tomorrow (5/29/03) about event production. It's at Spanganga from 6:30 to 8:30. Come on down, wontcha?

After that it's the 6th installment of my First Frickin' Fridays series at 21 Grand. It's a collaboration with multi-media performing artist Sara Kraft. I'll read, Sara will perform with her Woods for the Trees cohort Ed Purver. Sara and I will also do an improvised collaboration.

DJ {free/form} will also be on-hand to discuss and spin the sounds of Kozmigroov, featuring the likes of Sun Ra, Alice Coltrane, Herbie Hancock, Fela Kuti and much more). It's going to be an incredible night, Friday, June 6th don't miss it!!

Thursday, April 17, 2003

This one's for all that TRAFFIC....

I figure I should post some fresh material here, seeing as the three-dog media circus will likely be drawing more folks here, or already is. For those who haven't heard, or like the echoey sound of old news ricocheting through their cortex-as, I'm referring to the Laughing Squid New York Show which I will be participating in along with a horde of San Francisco's finest underground artists n' characters. ["Characters" would that cover the PORN CLOWNS??? I guess it's a start; a vague, rude n' amusing gesture.]

A tweeker's dozen or so of these friend's n' neighbors of mine are already sur la route from the City by the Bay to the Apple that is Big. You can follow their adventures on a daily basis--pictures and journal. Check it out.

Monday, April 14, 2003

Hey Bush: Remember not to Forget Iraq

Like you did Afghanistan. I'm sure it gets a bit heady when you're trying to figure out all that money (which friends to favor and what not); but don't leave them out of the budget like you did the last people that we bombed into freedom. Yeah, like you care.

There's something called the Group On Mass Violence at Harvard, here is a stunning personal letter from a US Citizen to his president listed amongst a group of readings on their website. The person's name is Jonathan Ingbar, and I cannot find anything on the web to identify him as a person of any particular political, academic, or social prominence. But he's articulate and expresses well many of my own concerns about the conduct of the administration at this time.

Wednesday, April 09, 2003

Designing my own behavior

I want to train myself to use this blog as a scratchpad and to-do list. Start page, hotlist, PORTAL, whatever. I'm not there yet. And if I get closer then the question will be--is there privacy, or do I need to have privacy. The Internet has always had an impulse of voyeurism mixed in with its community (and an impressive tradition of both at once!). Not that this is so dramatic. But I need to have a long think on how to make this space a bit more a part of my daily life, and from that will come more usefullness for me and for "you" more postings and a more interesting view of my life. So this is the start, I suppose, a note to self.
[Now that was an obscure reference.]

Saturday, April 05, 2003

For fans of Boondocks

a nice interview with Boondock's creator Aaron McGruder at the 2002 NAACP Image Awards, on where they also have a Boondocks Archives that is a couple months behind. That is good, because the UComics site only keeps a 2 week archive. And you sometimes need more than 14 strips at a time.

Thursday, March 27, 2003

That was a great show!!

The benefit for Tim North was an incredible show. It was a great crowd, a
large crowd, and there was a lot to take in--
two stages, several large video screens, lots of things to buy, a raffle AND an auction.
There were some incredible performances (and others that I wish I'd seen, there was
so much going on). In the auction one small SRL piece for $800
bucks (and there were other big auction items). So I think that the benefit part did really well.
The SRL folks deserve high praise for all the work they did and
how well-run it was; they put the whole thing together in about a month!!

Tim looked good considering; he's lost a lot of weight, but he was chipper, and walking around some, while also
spending time in a rather majestic recliner that had been provided for him. And Tim even
got on stage and played drums at the very end of the show, with an all star Jam band
featuring former members of Saqqara Dogs and Rhythm & Noise. That was the highlight. The Extra Action Marching Band was a close second with a SCORCHINGly great set.

There's an awesome t-shirt, with a picture of Tim on it, and there
is an INCREDIBLE SRL nudie calendar. No sign of it being for
sale on their site yet, but I'll let you know if I find out where you can buy
it (or browse it). It is hilarious and very well done.

Sunday, March 23, 2003

Tuesday, please don't miss

The Tim North Benefit

Tuesday, March 25

7 p.m. to 2 a.m. at SOMARTS Gallery

934 Brannan, San Francisco

door $10 - $10,000 sliding scale

Tim North is the man behind the Hoverdrum, one of the Ten
Percussion Wonders Of The World; he has also performed with Crash
Worship, Sauce of the Future, Comfort Control, and, the Indiana
new wave wonders, Dow Jones and the Industrials.

There are a lot of benefit shows, for many good causes, but for me
this is the most worthy I've ever known. Tim is a great guy with
a lovely family, and he is a talented and original musician. He
has cancer which incredibly unfair because he should have many
great years ahead of him. He recently moved to Southern
California after being a stalwart member of the San Francisco art,
music, machine, industrial scene for years and years. Because he
was focusing on music there, he was not working a corporate gig,
and thus does not have insurance. He needs all the help we can
give him, and he is 100% worth it. Please come out for this!!!

Friday, March 21, 2003

I give TT some credit on this one

Ted Turner says that he volunteered to cover Iraq for CNN.

Iraq is actually the same...

UPDATE: Haliburton in action in Iraq!

Haliburton, when Cheney was CEO, signed contracts with Iraq valued at $73 million [this from a news site that refers to Anti-War Protests as "Appeasement Protests", so it has survived a test by bias]. That's contray to Dick's version--he said, yes, they dealt with Libya, but Iraq was "different". Now, of course, Haliburton is on the shortlist of companies that will be part of the rebuilding party (whoops! "effort"). A brave soul in Congress tried to do something about the conflict of interest (sorry, did I forget to qualify that as apparent?), but it was shot down, basically, because Lockheed would also be precluded from the deal . And not having Lockheed be a part of the re-building is just unthinkable.

If you can spare a standing ovation, please do for this exchange:

Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y, the chairman of the Subcommittee on Domestic and International Monetary Policy, Trade and Technology, admonished Waters for raising questions about the administration's rebuilding plan. "I think it's really irresponsible on the eve of the war to be (doing) this and implying something" about possible conflicts of interest, he said.

Waters replied that it is "irresponsible to wave the flag of war" in the face of potential conflicts of interest that could involve billions of dollars.

Here's some more on Cheney/Haliburton/greed:

Thursday, March 20, 2003

This is a great piece about How to support our troops but rue Bush's new global Darwinism . A lot of us need that. And he could be reading my thoughts when he says:

It seems likely -- and we should all hope, for humanity's sake and our country's -- that we'll win this war, that Saddam Hussein will be retired from active duty, that hard evidence of the existence of weapons of mass destruction in his Iraq will turn up (and hopefully be destroyed before they find their way to the black market), and that the Iraqi people will probably, to one degree or another, be better off under whatever comes next. Bush will benefit from these developments, a fact that brings me no joy. But we must admit that these are all very good things, and liberal opponents of the war need to acknowledge them--along with the fact that, let's face it, the United Nations was not enforcing its resolutions against Iraq, and only the pressure applied by this administration made it begin to do so.

I concede that last point, but it is hard for me to seperate the intention from the effect. I think that it is safe to say that the only reason that Iraq cooperated to the extent that they did with weapons inspectors is because the American military was massing on his borders. But I do not believe that Bush and his war engines ever intended to be satisfied by anything short of invading Iraq. And worse, some of them are motivated by a chance to display military might--after all these are guys who live on drills and drawing boards, rarely having a game day to reward all of that practice; others in the administration are relishing a mighty bombing campagin because it will allow them to grant generous contracts to their corporate buddies to rebuild the place. IF the "build-up to war" were part of a strategy to intimidate Saddam and not merely a pretense (a window dressing) for war, then I might spend time dwelling on the positive effects it had. But that wasn't the case and we were steered to war, as planned (albeit more slowly because of the UN route being invoked).

But the article is a good one. The author is Michael Tomasky and I got the link from Altercation (about my third favorite site these days, after Google News & TPM). I've now read a couple great pieces from Tomasky, who also writes for New York Magazine, and he also has guested on Altercation from Eric Alterman (of The Nation)

And how about Bechtel, huh? The pride of the Bay Area. Multi-national corporation responsible for horrors in the
privatization of Bolivian water rights, a crooked clusterfuck of a building project in Boston, the arming of Saddam, and now has applied for the spoils of his removal. Here's a quote from another article on this subject:

Five of the companies invited to bid on that contract - Fluor Corp., Bechtel Group Inc., Louis Berger Group Inc., Parsons Corp. and Halliburton Co. subsidiary Kellogg Brown & Root - have contributed $2.8 million to candidates during the last two elections, 68 percent to Republicans, according Federal Elections Commission data.

Anyway, Bechtel got Real Shut Down today in San Francisco.

Blogging from Iraq

His name is Salam. He is in Baghdad. He has a weblog.
It is a really amazing thing. Not to get all cuddly about this internet technology thing, but, you know, it's fantastic that this exists and we can get a first hand perspective from someone there.

Wednesday, March 19, 2003

Every Station Plays the Same Anthem...

This is one of the scariest things that I've seen re: corporate wartime; Clear Channel, never my favorite, have offically gained my Most Hated Corporation status:

Some of the biggest rallies this month have endorsed President Bush's strategy against Saddam Hussein, and the common thread linking most of them is Clear Channel Worldwide Inc., the nation's largest owner of radio stations.

More Links, Less Chatter

Let's just link the quotes, shall we?

More as is necessary...

Essential reading

Here are some links to share this A.M, some are news and some are just essential reading!

That's all for now. More later. Believe in the possibility of peace and we can make it happen. mikl.em

Tentacle Session #38 : Sunday, March 30

Hal Robins will star in the Tentacle that ends all Tentacle Sessions. On Sunday, March 30th at 7pm, I hope you can join us for the Terminal Tentacle Session!! Location TBA this week!!!

Monday, March 17, 2003

Today is...

A shitty day. It is a day to wear your favorite clothes, eat something warm for lunch, look at your favorite things and make sure you appreciate them. It may be a watershed day. Everything may be different tomorrow. We don't need another war, but it seems that we will have one anyway. I fucking hate that guy. History will, too, I believe. Take care.

Sunday, March 16, 2003

Get a laugh out of it! is funnier than you are, smart guy! And they have stuff you can buy to help us all laugh a little bit more at how incredibly f*cked we are with Herr Shrub running things. In addition to their classic designs (like My President took a month-long vacation in Crawford, Texas -- and all I got was this lousy double-dip recession!), they have recently debuted a series of war poster designs.

And from a joke on the site, I found out about a news story that I had somehow missed, where George H Bush criticized his son's foreign policy!!!!

Here's a Pro-war Article

From the York [PA] Daily Record comes George W. Bush a big-league president, just to remind you that some people are actually falling for the administration's line (and apologizing for it when necessary).

Meanwhile Doonesbury had a great run last week at the un-logic of the Republican's pro-deficit budget; make sure to read all of them through the exciting conclusion. And did you catch Trudeau's coverage of the Portland Public Schools plan to cut 24 days from their school year due to budget crisis?

23-year old American dies in Gaza

A more detailed report than you are likely to find in the US media on the American peace activist who was killed today in Gaza.

Saturday, March 15, 2003

Our tax dollars at War...

More details on how the Coalition of the Billing gets paid off to support George Bush's march to war! Chile, Bulgaria, and Romania get economic benefits for being our new allies.

Once you turn Turkey on...

The bUSh has stopped trying to bribe Turkey to let us base troops there, now they are back-pedaling, trying to convince Turkey NOT to send their own troops into Northern Iraq. This is an attempt to undo their earlier sellout of the Kurds; check out this Talking Points Memo post from last week on our sellout of the Kurds. The author of TPM is Josh Marshall who writes for the Washington Monthly and other politics-focused periodicals. I find it essential reading.

The Warheads in the 5-point building

It's not like I'm a fan of Army Secretary Thomas E. White, former Enron executive and fat cat. But isn't there an adage about "my enemy's enemy is my friend?" What I mean is that anyone who is a thorn in the side of Donnie Rumsfeld is... well, okay, I still don't think I'd invite White over for dinner or anything, but I'm glad to root for him from afar. This article (originally from the LA Times, who make you register to read and then put their articles in archives after 7 days--boo!) discusses the current situation, which involves not following the proper spin cycle...

Recently, he again irked the Pentagon's civilian leaders by refusing to challenge Army Chief of Staff Gen. Eric K. Shinseki's prediction that it could take "hundreds of thousands" of U.S. troops to keep the peace in a postwar Iraq.

Pentagon's civilian leaders (read: Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz) are notorious for dicatating policy and valuing yes-men and not skeptics or critical voices. From the above article we learn that the Air Force Secretary feels undermined by the Pentagon, that there is no secretary or undersecretary of the Navy right now, and that Shinseki, the Army's top military officer, has been a lame duck since Rumsfeld named his successor nearly 15 months before the general's scheduled retirement in June.

So it really is the Rums n' Wolfy Show, as long as some of these people with ACTUAL MILITARY EXPERIENCE would stop shooting off their mouths about how many troops they think will be required. Since Rumsfeld is such an accomplished public speaker himself, able to turn the headlines of European papers and the stomachs of European populations, the BBC has put together the Donald Rumsfeld soundbite archive though it is out of date by many months now.

Have you heard the infamous Kissinger quote about Rummy? He called him the most ruthless man I know. Comforting, huh?

Wolfowitz, by the way, looks like a weasely bad guy from Battlestar Galactica or Buck Rogers. Thanks to the genius of military web design, you can get a version of Wolfowitz's image which is so hi-res you could print a poster from it. Watch it fill your browser window! You don't want to see his eyes this big. You don't want to know!

Protests foreshadowing the morning after?

Did you hear about the war protest here in SF? It included the 60 year old former President of the Pacific Stock Exchange. The protest centered on the Stock Exchange, which is right across from my chricopractor's office. :) They tried to bum rush it and shut it down. They got kicked out so they shut down a few intersections. The power of a mass of human bodies; which is a metaphor for a mass of human opinion. This is in some ways a test run for the morning after a war starts. Which is NEGATIVE THINKING--we should be planning on the war never starting!!! Intersections will be shut down all over the city, but especially downtown. I wasn't there today, but you can bet I'll be there if that day does come around.

In other news, have you heard about Terror Insurance? Or how bout the 74 former members of congress who sent a letter to the White House urging Bush to hold off on his attack plans?? Or the former Nebraska Congresman who is suing George W Bush to restrain him from attacking Iraq?

Sunday, March 09, 2003

Do you know about Patriot Act II!? You better.

Ashcroft is more evil and blatant than you could ever imagine. This policy was leaked a month ago, it wasn't going to proposed until we were in the heat of distracting war. Here's what the ACLU has to say about this policy proposal that they had been working on for months, while denying that they were doing so. You can hardly believe it's the United states, huh?

Also read this on the frightening Computer Assisted Passenger Pre-screening System II (CAPPS II) . According to the ACLU this is being
tested (not "proposed", not "approved") at several airports this month!! The Transportation Security Agency
Lockheed Martin got the contract the economy looks pretty sweet if you're a Homeland defense contractor.

Wednesday, March 05, 2003

do you need links on Politics?

Well, here they are anyway. First of all, the must-reads, which have become daily obsessions for me:

A few interesting blogs that I've been meaning to check out (more of):

By the way, it seems that Alterman critiques Kurtz in his book, and Welch disses Alterman regularly. I wonder what Donahue thinks?

A couple other recent politico links of note:

Sunday, March 02, 2003

Can you spell "NO WAR"? How about NUDE?

In Sydney, Australia 300 naked women spelled out NO WAR in protest to US threat of attacking Iraq.
That sounds impressive, but in fact the first such protsest in Sydney, last month, featured 750 women! Not to be left out in the cold, naked men in Sydney spelled out Peace last week, tho they could only get up [sik.] a force of 250 or so.
Here's the call-to-disrobe published before the protest.

In Vancouver naked protestors made a Peace sign. It turns out that the whole thing traces back to "BARING WITNESS" which started in... guess what state? Of course there are also Naked for Peace opportunities in San Francisco.

Gibson points out this link about the Gaudi tower that was originally planned for the eventual site of the WTC.

Bill Clinton. Juror?

There is not a lot more that I need to say. Just the link.

Blogger FAQ-ers Google

Ev/Pyra/Blogger has now posted a FAQ about the Google buys Pyra deal. Google has stayed mum, press-wise. Likewise, Neil Gaiman seems to have no comment. Not that probably anyone has asked him. Though you could ask him, since he's a customer. Another famous Blogger user is William Gibson who today posted about Roky Erikson and Starbuck's.

Sunday, February 16, 2003

I'm off to the Peace March here in SF. Here's my sign and message of the day:

Here's the site to look for independent coverage: Indymedia

Saturday, February 15, 2003

A nice column from Michael Kinsley on this whole Miguel Estrada nomination and filibuster. How do I feel about it? I am always a fan of amateur theatrics; if you can call politicians amateur in that regard. Estrada is definitely putting on the sheep's clothing to try to tiptoe into a position which has been the waiting chambers for a shot at the Supreme Court bench. So I'm bullish on filibusters.

Friday, February 14, 2003

The American People don't want war. Well, at least not RIGHT NOW and that's a start.

Thursday, February 13, 2003

Saturday, February 08, 2003

Okay, now it's Frickin SATURDAY!!

WELL, that was a great night! My thanks to 21 Grand
for being the wonderful hosts that they always are. To all the performers, and definitely to Tarin Towers and the great Hal Robins who joined the lineup at the last minute. And to Mike B. who sat in George Bush's seat and let us all take it out on him. And finally to Ed Holmes who helped put this month's show together, and brought his band The Flying Alessandros who gave us two great sets. The next FFF will be Friday, April 4th--same venue, different theme. I'll keep you posted!

Friday, February 07, 2003

Wednesday, February 05, 2003

Some miscellaneous links and commentary:

I've spent a fair amount of time recently on CounterPunch a site full of intelligent dissenting views. Terrorists who are Pro-Castro are okay with this administration (they can start wars AND put them on pause. Meanwhile we are protected from perils of Scotch polluted by Castro's wood.

Fans or would-be fans can find a bunch of new stuff on Attaboy's site: some great posters from recent events, the updated Eye Candy section done in Flash features the full range of his work, and there's stuff you can buy, too. The Attaboy & Burke has been updated, too. And Attaboy's art show with KRK Ryden at CB's 313 Gallery was the snowball that started the whole avalanche of this New York Laughing Squid event (which occurs on the closing night of the art show).

This past week Danielle and I went to the Sprocket Ensemble Ideas in Animation show at Minna Street gallery. Nik & Nancy Phelps are dear friends and put on a great show. The fact that the series features a sampling of excellent independent animation from all over the world in a wide variety of styles would be enough to make it worth attending. But, in fact, that's only the beginning. Nik, a veteran of the Club Foot Orchestra and a frequent session man for Tom Waits amongst many others, conducts his ensemble playing his compositions as live soundtrack to the animations. Nik is an award-winning composer and multi-instrumentalist. Danielle and I had the honor of producing his Tentacle Session (done in tandem with animator/cartoonist Nina Paley) and working with them on a number of events. The Sprockets will also be making the journey out to New York for the CB's show. By the way, the current art show at Minna Street is amazing.

New York City, here we come!!

I'm going to perform in an incredible LaughingSquid show in NYC. The show is at CBGB's Gallery on Saturday, April 26th. The lineup will include some of San Francisco's finest performing artists (including at least 7 Tentacle Session veterans) such as Ed Holmes, Mr. Lucky, and $teven Ra$pa. Many more details on the show as it approaches.

If you're here because you've heard about that show and want to know what I do, check out my series First Frickin' Fridays, some mp3s of me reading my work, and a hypertext poem that I wrote back in 1997.

Monday, February 03, 2003

Check out the updated First Frickin' Friday webpage! This show should be great, I hope you can make it!

Sunday, February 02, 2003

Been too long since I've posted. sorry.

Merry Chistmas! Happy Boxing Day! Happy New Year! Buoyant February!

This Friday is First Frickin' Friday Four. It's going to be a Presidential Intervention & Weenie Roast!! and should be an incredible night of vent and holler and release,
with a mix of sophisticated political critique and sophomoric anti-establishmentarianismistic fun and funny.
The lineup so far is incredible and people from the audience (like you?) can join in the fun, too.

More details up on this later today--I'll be updating the series website, too. Peace.