Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Revolutionary QOTD: May 23, 2006

Art is either plagiarism or revolution.
~Paul Gauguin

Monday, May 22, 2006

Revolutionary QOTD: May 22, 2006

Every successful revolution puts on in time the robes of the tyrant it has deposed.
~Barbara Tuchman
The American Revolution is no exception. In fact it is one of the truest examples of the rule. And that is what makes the next revolution necessary. It may sound radical, but one of our founding fathers said something similar. And it was one of our first Revolutionary QOTDs.
Every generation needs a new revolution.
~Thomas Jefferson

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Revolutionary QOTD: May 21, 2006

Here in America we are descended in blood and in spirit from revolutionists and rebels - men and women who dare to dissent from accepted doctrine. As their heirs, may we never confuse honest dissent with disloyal subversion.
~Dwight D. Eisenhower

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Revolutionary QOTD: May 20, 2006

"The monopoly capitalists - even while employing purely empirical methods - weave around art a complicated web which converts it into a willing tool. The superstructure of society ordains the type of art in which the artist has to be educated. Rebels are subdued by its machinery and only rare talents may create their own work. The rest become shameless hacks or are crushed."
~Ernesto (Che) Guevara

"The amount of poverty and suffering required for the emergence of a Rockefeller, and the amount of depravity that the accumulation of a fortune of such magnitude entails, are left out of the picture, and it is not always possible to make the people in general see this."
~Ernesto (Che) Guevara

Today is a QOTD two-for, because I have been remiss in my duties of providing the revolutionary inspiration that the masses have come to expect from this popular blog. When I say masses, I mean the hundreds of thousands who come here daily for that inspiration. When I say hundreds of thousands, that's not an exact figure. It's ball park. I could be slightly lower. It could only be a couple. It's an optimistic estimate.

But in not posting yesterday, I feel I have let all those people down, slightly. Because as I have said before, revolutionaries don't have days off. Not even weekends. We do occasionally have to, without warning, go underground and perhaps incommunicado. Like the Decider, when speaking of secret domestic spying programs, I can't go into detail about going underground. In fact, I can't really confirm or deny the reason that I didn't post yesterday was because of being underground. Because saying so would compromise revolutionary security. We're in a global revolution against the man here people. And we don't we don't want give aid and comfort to the man, by making him privy to revolutionary secrets.

Stand up and fight the powers.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Revolutionary QOTD: May 18, 2006

I and I build a cabin
I and I plant the corn
Didn't my people before me
Slave for this country
Now you look me with a scorn....

....Build your penitentiary, we build your schools
Brainwash education to make us the fools
Hate is your reward for our love
Telling us of your God above
~Bob Marley, Crazy Baldheads

I and I be in Santa Barbara this evening. I and I go to the club and hear the whitest Reggae band. This is not what I and I say, but what a white boy from Montana say to me after the band finish. He say to me, I think Santa Barbara, and I think I can hear real Reggae. But I say to him, the words of the prophet, I and I, Bob Marley, is da same no matter what people speak it. Go with Jah.

-Jah Rastafari and stand up and fight the powers

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Revolutionary QOTD: May 17, 2006

The supreme good is like water,
which nourishes all things without trying to.
It is content with the low places that people disdain.
Thus it is like the Tao.

In dwelling, live close to the ground.
In thinking, keep to the simple.
In conflict, be fair and generous.
In governing, don't try to control.
In work, do what you enjoy.
In family life, be completely present.

When you are content to be simply yourself
and don't compare or compete, everybody will respect you.
~Lao Tsu, Tao Te Ching

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

It's Not So Good to Be the King (of Beers)

"Put it back in the horse!"
~H. Allen Smith, after he drank his first American beer.
This is classic. I was just forwarded this article from the Nation from a friend. Budweiser spent $40 million dollars for a monopoly on beer sales at this years World Cup. You'd think that would be good for Budweiser. That was before they knew it would be held in Germany. Budweiser is a company with German roots. That should be good news for them too. Not quite. The Nation article explains, "Unfortunately, Germans don't like the beer. They call it Spulwasser, which roughly translates as dishwater."

Any true beer lover knows this to be true. Trying to sell Budweiser in Germany is like trying to sell Boone's Farm wine in France. Or like trying to sell Burger King's croissandwich there. I went to Burger King in Paris, and they don't sell the croissandwich there. Yes, a McDonald's Quarter Pounder with cheese is a Royale with Cheese. My friend suggests, it would be like having Hyundai sponsor a NASCAR event. The Nation article says Budweiser had to back off, that selling it there would have resulted in riots:
"The Germans have even set up an anti-Bud website. If you take the time to drop in on the site, you will see pictures of Teutonic youths performing extreme anti-Bud acts."
I love it. Budweiser is tasteless piss brewed not for flavor but for mass appeal. And I love the Germans for rejecting their $40 million in advertising dollars and their bland brew. Here is what they say on their site. They could use some help with their English translation, but good taste has no language:

"Human dignity is inviolable"
[Constitution of the Federal Republic of Germany, Article 1 (1)]

Dish water. Insult to your tongue. The american "beer" Budweiser has faced many -- mostly desperate -- descriptions. "Official Sponsor of the FIFA World Cup '06 in Germany" was usually not amongst them. Sadly enough, this expression is as true as all the others since the american "brewery" Anheuser-Busch will be the official "beer"-supplier for the football World Cup this year. An insult to all true beer lovers, taste buds and football-fans.

What have we become? Self-denial for 40 million US-Dollars? What are our children supposed to think of us?

"A time to make friends" - with a bud in our hands?!

However, we won't give up without a fight. United we're strong. Your voice does matter. Become part of the BudOut-Community and send us a picture with you anti-bud-message. Two minutes of your life for the good taste. Two minutes of your life for a better future.

Be into beer.

-Stand up and fight the powers. And have good beer now and then.

Brown's Gas

Ok, I thought this was moonbat theory, a water fuel for cars, but see for yourself. It is called Brown's gas, named after its inventor. Everyone knows that you can split water into hydrogen and oxygen, but not that you can recombine it into something called HOH, which is Brown's Gas. It burns not by exploding, but by imploding. Wouldn't be great if this guy put the evil oil companies out of business? There's more info here.
Professor Yul Brown has developed a machine that will convert plain tap water to a stoichiometric mixture of hydrogen and oxygen without causing an explosion, hitherto fore thought to be impossible to do. He has discovered another state of water besides ice, water or steam. It is Brown's Gas! One liter of water makes 1860 liters of Brown's gas, when a spark is added to the gas, it still does not explode, it implodes. Brown's Gas implodes! When it implodes it makes the most unique welder in the world. People who can weld, confirm that it is impossible to weld dissimilar metals, glass to metal, metal to brick, and just about anything to anything, but you can with Brown's Gas Welder.

-Stand up and fight the powers.

Update: At first I thought the web site I found was the same guy as the video, but the article is about Professsor Yul Brown and the guy in the video is Denny Klein. Still researching to find out what is true.

More Update: Can't find anything yet on Klein, just Brown. Google, Wikipedia and a little bit of knowledge is dangerous.

Yet Another Update: Here's an article on Klein. Except for that local Fox News video, I am finding nothing on this guy in the MSM. But will go to the ends of the Internet to find out. Exhaustive research, as long as I don't have to get dressed, is what I'm all about.

Wash Down Your Thumbili With a Cool Soquid

As long as I'm on this sick culinary kick I may as well top it off with this. Thumbili. Yes, it's sick, but don't blame me. Not entirely. I'm only reposting it. It is the work of my nemesis, Richard Quick, Esq. It's the only thing a soquid is fit to wash down IMHO. Also, I hate it when a billionaire begs, so yes, Mr. Quick, you move back to the top of the capitalist pig hit list above Bill Gates. When the revolution comes, we will see you first, on the veranda. That's when you'll get your last good look from there, because then it will belong to the people. Though we may keep you on the estate to work the grounds if I am in a particularly forgiving mood at the time.

Today's Menu

I just noticed that I am on a particularly culinary bent this morning. Boiled frog, freedom fries and a smooth creamy soquid. Mmmm....

What the Fudge is It?

Ok, I know it is a stupid commercial about fast food, but I am mystified by how anyone can find it appealing. In Wendy's new commercials for their Frosty two cliche nerd types inform us that it is a soquid. Not liquid, not solid. It looks like it could be made of plastic. I don't trust any food that is marketed by a brand name that isn't followed by a generic name or something natural. They never describe a Frosty as a milk shake. Their site describes it as, "Cool, creamy and refreshing. Made with real milk, nothing satisfies more than this Wendy's original." When they have to emphasize that it is made with "real milk" that just sets off my paranoidar. Not only that, but if you look at the list of ingredients, they repeat the fact twice more:
Medium Frosty(TM)
Milk, Sugar, Cream, Nonfat Dry Milk, Corn Syrup, Whey, Cocoa, Dextrose, Guar Gum, Cellulose Gum, Mono and Diglycerides, Carrageenan, Disodium Phosphate, Artificial and Natural Flavors. CONTAINS: MILK.
Milk is the first ingredient and then at the end they say, CONTAINS: MILK. Is that emphasis meant to distract us from the long list of multi-syllabic, chemical crap in the ingredient list? It's weird because I used to live off fast food many years ago. Now I can't imagine ingesting something like this. Especially since Morgan Spurlock's Super Size Me. That movie put me off fast food forever.

Revolutionary MOTD: Boiling the Frog

Today I am replacing the regular Revolutionary Quote of the Day (QOTD) with a Metaphor of the Day (MOTD). Today I got up early to listen to Rachel Maddow on Air America Radio. After all the domestic spying news that is being gradually revealed, they could call the network Radio Free America. It's coming to that, if it's not already there. And that is precisely the topic of the MOTD, but I'm getting ahead of myself. I have to get up early to hear Rachel, or stay up late, because here on the left coast she's on from 2am to 6am. I read an article about her somewhere and I hadn't heard her show before. Now I could plug in the credit card and plunk down the $6.95 or whatever it is they charge to listen to the archive. But I have an aversion to paying for what I could hear for free, especially when it's old.

I don't get that marketing strategy. Our content is free, except when it's already aired and the news on it is probably old news, then you have to pay for it. Interesting way of determining value for the customer. I wonder how that marketing is working for them. I thought of doing it just to support Air America, because I like them. But this is not the kind of idea I'd like to support. I figure listening to commercials is paying for it. I don't know if they leave them in the archived content, but if they did, that would be like pay. And I have to think offering free archives would only build their listenership. And for the advertisers it would make the commercials more than a one-shot payoff. But that's just me. Maybe without commercials it might be worth it.

So I wake up about 4:30-ish and listen and I like the show. This morning she had the perfect metaphor for NSA domestic spying and how the news is being trickled out to us. She called it, boiling the frog. She explains that it is not as common of a metaphor as she thought, after speaking with some of her colleages at the studio, so she explained it on the air. It goes like this, if want to boil a frog, and you throw it in a pot of boiling water, it will simply jump out. Why you would want to boil a frog and why you couldn't use a top trap the frog or incapacitate it in some way was not discussed. But hey, it's just a metaphor. The gist of it is, if you put the frog in tepid water and slowly heat it, the frog will not notice the gradual temperature change and you will have delicious, succulent boiled frog. Any fries with that?

How that works as a metaphor for domestic spying is apparent by now. We keep hearing examples of it that are "acceptable" in view of the Global War on Terror. So the American public accepts them. It's not the kind of extreme cases of spying that would set off the constitutional alarm bells and cause the public to react against it. But the examples get worse and worse, until one day we will find our freedom boiled. Have that with your freedom fries.

There's this case that was featured on HuffPo yesterday. The clip below is of Rachel debating Tucker Carlson on MSNBC, different day and different topic.

-Stand up and fight the powers.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Get Rich Quick!

This guy's got a pretty good schtick he performs on his blog. He's self-made billionaire, Richard Quick, Esq. He spends a lot of time harrassing people on other blogs in a pretty hilarious way. Check out this post from his blog and his comment on this post. I disagree with him on Colbert of course. But he's funny. When the revolution comes, of course we will have to return all his "billions" to the people. But we may be able to cut him some slack for having a real sense of humor. Not what passes for humor with Chimpy McFlightsuit and his crowd.

German Engineering in da House, Now the Garage

I just got this pic from a friend of a German engineered parking garage that according to him uses much less space:
....approximately only 20% of a comparable facility with the traditional design that is used primarily in the US.

Not only is the German structure less expensive to build, but vehicles are also "retrieved" in less time and without the potential of being damaged by an attendant.

I thought it would be the perfect backdrop for one of those new VW commercials like the one below, drop it like it's hot! I love those commercials. Our government could use some German efficiency. In foreign policy. In our educational system. In the national budget. I wonder if we could get VW to unpimp them. Drop them like they're hot....

Revolutionary QOTD: May 15, 2006

"Once social change begins, it cannot be reversed. You cannot uneducate the person who has learned to read. You cannot humiliate the person who feels pride. You cannot oppress the people who are not afraid anymore. We have seen the future, and the future is ours."
~Cesar Chavez

In anticipation of President Bush's address to the nation on Immigration, I figured it's time for another Cesar Chavez QOTD. An appropriate quote I think because social change is beginning in the immigration movement. And the quote emphasizes some of the key elements of true lasting social change, education, pride, and courage.

Si se puede!

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Your Mother....

Call her, it's Mother's Day. I'm making dinner for mine. Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers out there.

President Al Gore

Please tell me that this is true and that the last six years have just been a frightening dream. Pinch....

Ah well, maybe this version's not true, but a nation can dream can't it? Thanks SNL for showing us what could have been. Featured at C&L.

-Stand up and fight the powers.

Carnival of the Liberals

We are participating in Carnival of the Liberals, a blog carnival. It's being hosted this week by the blog, Daylight Atheism. Each carnival appears at a different blog and features the work of many bloggers. This blogger shares my admiration and respect for Ernie Chambers. Check out this weeks carnival here. Here's what Daylight had to say.
Being a liberal means standing up for your principles - something of which many incumbent Democrats sorely need to be reminded. The professional panderers of the Beltway could take a lesson from Nebraska State Senator Ernie Chambers, a personal hero of mine. The brilliant and fearless Sen. Chambers is profiled by A Revolution of One in a post titled Barak He is Not, which explains his support for a bill that separates the Omaha school district largely along racial lines as a genius political move.
The same post is also at the Carnival of Education at HUNblog.

Revolutionary QOTD: May 14, 2006

"It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it."
~Upton Sinclair.
Al Gore recycled this quote in a speech to the Sierra Club on Global Warming. It applies not just to the corporate interests who try to convince us that global warming is not a threat, but to many situations we find ourselves faced with these days. The fight for net neutrality and the other side's propaganda. Donald Rumsfeld and staying the course in Iraq. In fact it applies to W himself.

-Stand up and fight the powers.

Coffee Talk Meets Ann Coulter Meets Soccer Mom

Found this gem by way of Jesus' General. It's Coffee Talk meets Ann Coulter meets average suburban soccer mom. It's scary in a hilarious kind of way. Her message, we need a new network because Fox News is not conservative enough!!!??? It's almost enough to make me side with the anti-net neutrality side. Almost. But this is what freedom of speech is about. Everyone has a voice. Absolutely everyone.

Look out Air America and Fox News.
-Stand up and fight the powers.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Yet Another Save the Internet Video

Speaks for itself....

Update: The other side is fighting back with Orwellian newspeak worthy of the Bush administration. There's a post at savetheinternet.com's blog about what they're up to. Post a comment and let them know you're not falling for AT&T, Verizon, Comcast and BellSouth propaganda.

-Stand up and fight the powers.


After checking out Rent-A-Negro.com, some of my friends will understand the true value of my friendship. I wish I had thought of it first. If I went by images in the media, I would think my economic opportunities were limited to welfare, looting, prison, the NBA (far to late and too nerdy for that one), becoming a rapper (see previous item), and being or marrying Oprah (too many reasons to list why that can't happen). It just goes to show what you can accomplish with a little bit of imagination and entrepreneurial spirit. I may contact the person running this site and see if we can start an agency. We could diversify, rent a gay or lesbian (not me, not that there's anything wrong with it). Rent an undocumented worker...I think they already have that one and if you ask me they sell themselves out too cheap. The possibilities are endless.

-Stand up and fight the powers.

Verizon - It's the First Amendment

I just got a voicemail message this morning that was sent Monday. I guess my provider Verizon was too busy this week providing my records to the NSA to worry about good service. Now when I look at those commercials with all those people standing behind the Verizon customer representing, "the network," I wonder just how many of them are NSA agents spying on the customer for the government?

And if that wasn't enough to make them too busy to give me good service, then it must have been the time they spent lobbying congress to get rid of Net Neutrality and limit my ability to surf wherever I want on the net. For me there's a more important reason to choose a wireless company, it's the first amendment. Where can I find the number to Qwest?

-Stand up and fight the powers.

Revolutionary QOTD: May 13, 2006

"Small is the new big."
~Glenn Reynolds, An Army of Davids

This quote and the book by Glenn Reynolds is especially apropos in view of the fight for Net Neutrality and the Save the Internet campaign. The attempt by companies like AT&T, Verizon, Comcast and BellSouth to squelch freedom to surf wherever we want on the web is among the first strikes by those Goliaths back at this Army of Davids. It is an attempt to stifle the power that Glenn Reynolds speaks of in his book. I'm ashamed to admit that I am just getting around to reading it. As Arianna Huffington says in this review a couple months ago, it is a must read.

If you haven't been to savetheinternet.com, written or called your congressman and any of the number of other things they recommend, you should as soon as possible. This is an important fight. I notice as I read other blogs, though many have blogged about it, I'm not seeing as many Save the Internet banners as I thought I would. No matter where you are in the political spectrum, red, blue or purple, if you blog, if you just read blogs, or if you use the internet in any way, this affects you. Let's see those banners on every blog and every web site.

-Stand up and fight the powers.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Still Talking About Colbert

When I first posted on Stephen Colbert's performance at the WHCD I said it was a classic and it would be remembered for a very long time. But I never thought that almost two weeks later it would still be as hot a topic as it is. To be honest when I saw it was the topic of Arianna Huffington's post yesterday I wasn't anxious to get to it right away because I didn't think there was much more anyone could say. And I seriously doubted the title of her post, which was, Is Stephen Colbert the Last One to Know How Amazing He Was? But I was wrong and I should have read it immediately. Arianna was at Time's 100 Most Influential People Awards where Colbert was honored along with her. I believe he was the keynote speaker at that event as well. Arianna spoke with him and this is what she had to say:
...shockingly, one of the few people still unaware of just how big an impact the twin evisceration of the president and the puppy dog press has had is Stephen Colbert himself.

When I ran into him the other night at the Time 100 celebration, he told me that he had strenuously avoided reading anything about his appearance -- the good, the bad, or the ugly -- preferring to focus on the present and putting together his nightly TV show.
It surprises me, but it shouldn't. It's the same thing you hear star athletes and other performers say about their performances. It's almost a cliche, but it is so true, that you can't focus on the hype around it. You have to focus on the thing itself, whatever it is that you do. At first I was amazed that he would be the last to know his impact. But when you think about it, performing at his level, it makes sense.

When you look at the comments at this post and elsewhere around the blogs, it's a shame he doesn't know yet. It is touching what people have to say about him. He was truly courageous and it touched his audience. Arianna compares him to Swift, Twain and Bruce. It is an apt comparison. Finally she puts together some quotes from around the blogosphere that he should see when he's ready. Oddly, I didn't find mine among them. And this. She must have missed them. I understand. She's human. She can't catch everything.

In case you missed Colbert's performance, or in case you want to see it again, I have watched it several times, it's here and the whole WHCD including the performance is here. Enjoy.

-Stand up and fight the powers.

Ask A Ninja on Net Neutrality

Ask A Ninja weighs in on Net Neutrality, and I don't think I'd want to be on the other side of an issue against a Ninja. But that's just me.

Revolutionary QOTD: May 12, 2006

We are stardust, we are golden,
We are billion year old carbon,
And we got to get ourselves back to the garden.
~Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Woodstock

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Everybody's Getting Fat Except Mama Cass

When the revolution comes the tax rate on capital gains will be 100% and it will be payback time for the greedy bastards who are profiting while everyone else in this country is suffering. While the deficit is approaching 9 trillion dollars and we are engaged in an ill-conceived war that is costing us billions, and there is an oil crisis. There was a time in this country when things were this bad everyone would be asked to sacrifice. The only ones that are sacrificing are young men who are sent to fight a war that never should have been started. Some of whom come home to end up on the streets. And the poor and middle class are sacrificing because with the cost of fuel they can't help it. But the rich are getting their tax breaks extended by the Republican congress who fears they'll be out of power by mid-term elections and unable to give the store away to the haves.

Not only them, but oil companies are making record profits, while still receiving tax subsidies and incentives from the government. That fat arse from Exxon gets a 400 million dollar retirement package. Does he not remind you of Fat Bastard from Austin Powers? Halliburton and defense contractors are getting rich in Iraq. It seems like everybody's getting fat except Mama Cass. And the poor. And the middle-class. And the people who go and fight our wars. That only leaves the rich.

Mary Cheney - Reverse Princess Leia

Saw Mary Cheney on Larry King Live yesterday. The VP's daughter is promoting her new book, Now It's my Turn: A Daughter's Chronicle Of Political Life. She told Larry that part of her reason for doing the book is that so many people have a misperception of her daddy. If they could only see how daddy Dick is with the grandkiddies they'd see he's just a regular guy. I can see her point, and I'd like to see Mr. Cheney with the grandkids so I could forget about how he was an instrumental part of an administration that led us into an unnecessary and unjustified war. That he is an integral part of the neocon movement who set agenda for war long before 9/11. I could forget about his secret Energy Task Force meetings with oil industry executives long before this current oil crisis and I wouldn't suspect that they had anything to do with the record profits those companies are making now. Or with the billions in tax subsidies they are receiving at the same time. I could forget about how his former company Halliburton is making billions from no-bid contracts in Iraq.

I do empathize with Mary on one point she makes in the book. I also think that John Kerry and John Edwards' attempts to use the fact that she is a lesbian to make a political point during the debates was a sleazy. They should have let someone make swift boat type political ads to make that point for them. To do so in the debates was a transparently political use of a personal family issue and didn't do them much good. What they needed was plausible deniability of having a third party do it for them. Like Bush and Cheney did with the Swift Boat Veterans, who they never asked to retract their ads. By her reaction to it, apparently Mary has inherited her dad's filthy mouth. In the book she called Senator Kerry a son of a bitch and said that she mouthed the words, "Go f**k yourself," to Senator Edwards. As I said, I can understand why she was angry. Mary, Mary, I know why you're buggin'. I am honestly on her side on that one.

She is being criticized by gay activists for not speaking out against the administration, especially when Pressident Bush came out in support of an anti-gay marriage amendment. I have to admit, gay Republicans are a mystery to me. Just as are black Republicans and Hispanic Republicans and any minority Republicans. They strive to be accepted by the people that only a few decades ago were trying to keep them out of the country club. I don't get it. Maybe its not so hard to understand. Maybe they just want to belong. I think it is not worth it. Many years ago I had a brief flirtation with conservatism (it's true), and I can see how you can briefly be sucked in by it. But once you see what they are, why would you want to remain? Which may be why I see Mary Cheney as a kind of reverse Princess Leia. Instead of leading galactic rebel forces against her evil dad, Darth Cheney, she writes a book and goes on tour to support him. What a good Republican gay daughter.

Revolutionary QOTD: May 11, 2006

"In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist."
~President Dwight D. Eisenhower
I've used this quote before, at the end of a long post, but not as a QOTD. It's worth repeating because it relates to almost every headline we see in the news today, and most of what we read in blogs. The Iraq war, congressional corruption, domestic spying, the resignation of Porter Goss as CIA director, no bid Halliburton contracts (the Vice-President's old company), and the list goes on. Remember that Eisenhower was a general during World War II. His were not the words of someone anti-military. And now we are living what Ike warned us about not quite 50 years ago.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

An Inconvenient Truth

As much as I would like to see a woman president of this country in 2008, the only woman Democrat with a chance so far is becoming less and less appealing. Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton is probably doing all the right things from the perspective of pollsters and political advisors. People that any candidate seriously considering such a run would surround themselves with. I can't know for sure if that's what she's doing. But it certainly appears to be. And with something like a potential presidential campaign, appearances are just as damning as the truth.

She appears to be moving away from her liberal image and more toward the center. At the same time, on the Republican side Senator John McCain is moving away from his maverick image and more to the right. It seems like the right strategy for both if you were to ask and expert. But it also makes them both seem to be more interested in being president than in being who they are. It makes them both seem to be insincere chameleons who would change their colors to fit whatever environment they happen to find themselves in. I sincerely hope it will make them both blend into the background.

There's another potential candidate who doesn't happen to be a woman, but who is doing just the opposite. He is standing up for his convictions. Not on what appears to be the populist platform of the minute. He's someone who has already won a presidential election, but unfortunately lost the office to first term presidential appointee, George W. Bush. Al Gore is fighting the good fight against Global Warming and is the narrator of a new film being released May 24th. An Inconvenient Truth is the name of that film. There's a preview above. Ironically, an inconvenient truth seems to be the way Senators Clinton and McCain are treating what they believe as opposed to what they want the electorate to think they believe.

Image of Mother Earth above from NASA

President's Plans in Circular File

According to this story there are some holes in White House security for the president. It's no wonder national security is in the state it in. But it seems they are pretty clear on where to file the president's plans. This article from HuffPo describes what a sanitation worker found in the trash.
It appears to be a White House staff schedule for the President's trip to Florida Tuesday. And a sanitation worker was alarmed to find in the trash long hours before Mr. Bush left for his trip.

It's the kind of thing you would expect would be shredded or burned, not thrown in the garbage. Randy Hopkins could not believe what he was seeing.

There on the floor next to a big trash truck was a thick sheaf of papers with nearly every detail of the President's voyage.

Voodoo, Crooks & Liars

Found this (also below) at C&L. They have taken on a decided musical tone recently. In fact John says, "I've had so many requests to do a C&L music club that you've convinced me. If you have any suggestions, please leave them in the comment section. (That includes everyone who just lurks and never comments.)" I like the idea. So far I have lurked, but I will comment. There's also a clip of Frank Zappa just jamming. This one is classic Jimi Hendrix doing Voodoo Child from 1970. It was officially the '70s, but it's got the '60s vibe still. I love the '60s. Definitely my favorite decade so far. There's other good stuff at C&L, Chris Matthews giving cred to liberal bloggers, Glenn Beck, who is new on CNN - The most trusted name in news, being an idiot. Check them out, but first enjoy Jimi.

Revolutionary QOTD: May 10, 2006

They sell us the president the same way
They sell us our clothes and our cars
They sell us every thing from youth to religion
The same time they sell us our wars
I want to know who the men in the shadows are
I want to hear somebody asking them why
They can be counted on to tell us who our enemies are
But they're never the ones to fight or to die
And there are lives in the balance
There are people under fire
There are children at the cannons
And there is blood on the wire
~Jackson Browne - Lives in the Balance, Acoustic Solo, Vol. I
From C&L. There's a link to the full lyrics there and to the music video of Jackson Browne's new anti-war song. Worth watching, especially if you're a Jackson Browne fan.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

The People's Right to Google Shall Not Be Infringed

"In Cyberspace, the First Amendment is a local ordinance."
~John Perry Barlow (EFF)

How do you feel about your cable company? Do they give you the warm fuzzies? Do you like the way they set up your choices of what you can watch in packages so you can't choose exactly what you want, but what they want you to have? Do you like how much they charge you? Now, how would you feel if your Internet Service Provider (ISP) changed your service so that it was set up, in a sense, like cable TV? So that for instance, if your favorite search engine is Google, they only offered Yahoo and you were stuck with it. And if you used iTunes, they'd only give you the choice of Rhapsody or Napster? What if they could prevent you from using Myspace or Ebay? Would that kind of suck?

There is a bill in congress right now that would do precisely that. Many of you may already know about it from other blogs, myspace.com, or Moveon.org, and have already been to savetheinternet.com. Everyone should. This bill, should it become law, would give the major corporations who provide internet service the power to decide what you can access and what you can't. They would be able to slow down, meaning give less bandwidth, or block entirely, sites on the web they didn't want you to use. Conversely they could speed up, give greater bandwidth to sites they want you to use. If your provider is AT&T, one of the forces behind this bill, and they develop their own search engine, then they might have a vested interest in keeping you from using Google. Or they could force Google to pay them, beyond what they already pay for bandwidth, to provide fast access to their service. They could force you to use Yahoo if Yahoo paid them what essentially amounts to a kickback, or extortion depending upon which side you view it from.

This proposed law would completely destroy what has been called the first amendment of the Internet, a principle called Net Neutrality. Network neutrality means that providers have to allow equal access to every site on the web. Whether it's Microsoft's or a site with pictures of your cat. It assures that every site is equal on the internet. And that affects more than where you can surf on the web. It affects everyone with a presence on the web who doesn't have big bucks to pay to insure they get preferential treatment. Arianna Huffington has a interesting piece on net neutrality and the terminology used to publicize this fight, compared to the newspeak used by the Bush administration to sell their agenda with terminology like the Global War on Terror. She's got links to others who are speaking out as well.

If you're a small business, or a professional with a web site; if you have a Myspace account, or a blog, you should be concerned about this new law. It gives these corporations the power to literally silence anyone whose voice they don't like on the web. It would give them the power to censor the web. If your blog complains about AT&T, they could virtually shut you down. It will make the playing field uneven. The next set of innovators, like the founders of Google, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, or like the founders of Ebay, would not have the same ability to compete and to innovate on the web that they have now. New ideas would be stifled before they start. Without the big bucks to pay for the same access as established sites, their ideas would be banished to the backwaters of the web where no one could find them.

The big corporations who support this new law, companies like AT&T, Verizon, Comcast, and BellSouth say that they should be able to charge big bandwidth users a surtax for the extra demand they put on the system. They say they could use the money to build more capacity for the next generation internet for rich media and applications, such as video, movies, and games. But the big users of the system already pay for it when they pay per gigabyte for bandwidth. Why would these companies need to be able to restrict anyone's access to anywhere on the web to achieve that goal? If bandwidth charges aren't enough, charge more.

You Gotta Fight for Your Right To iTunes!
Since Al Gore invented it (actually he had more to do with it than you might think), the internet has become most democratic system not only in existence, but in history. This medium belongs to the people and their right to it should be protected, not given away by congress. It was originally funded by public money. Specifically the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA). The internet was developed over many years without a governing body, by essentially volunteers who came together across many differing fields. From academia and technology and the world community at large to make it what it is. And it is precisely its nature as a decentralized, non-hierarchical system that makes it so powerful. Much of the software which makes the world wide web possible was collaborative and open source. The original Mosaic browser, Linux, the Apache web server, today's Mozilla browser and many other. The internet and the web are a kind of organized anarchy that works.

All this we call the internet and world wide web was created, essentially through cooperation by people around the world. Now corporate interests want to come in and take control of it. Everyone who uses the web, everyone who blogs, everyone who uses Myspace, literally everyone but those behind this power grab, has an interest in seeing this law voted down. We cannot let them turn the web into cable TV. Visit savetheinternet.com now and find out what you can do to stop this law from passing. Spread the word to everyone you know who uses the web.

Revolutionary QOTD: May 9, 2006

"As the most participatory form of mass speech yet developed, the Internet deserves the highest protection from government intrusion."
~Judge Dalzell, CDA panel

Monday, May 08, 2006

A Fish Story Says It All

This says it all. When asked what the highest point in his presidency was by a German newspaper, George W. Bush responded:
"I would say the best moment of all was when I caught a 7.5 pound perch in my lake."
Doesn't that just explain everything

Not That There's Anything Wrong With That

There's an interesting theory surrounding CIA Director Porter Goss' resignation. This one is from This Modern World, and links to a Daily Kos diarist who has an interesting take on the whole Randy "Duke" Cunningham, poker and hookers story. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Unless of course you're one of the people who runs for office on a platform that there is something wrong with that.

Moonbat Crazy

Any conspiracy theory that proposes the idea that the US military is capable of plotting terrorism against America as a pretext to war is just moonbat crazy. The linked story is from ABC News.

Why We Fight

Lt. Col. Karen Kwiatkowski is a 20 year US Air Force veteran and worked in the Pentagon at a very high level. She was there on 9/11 when it was attacked. If you still have any doubt that prior to the Iraq war, that the Bush administration already had plans for war against Saddam Hussein, or that during the lead up to the war they ignored what the Intelligence community was telling them, you should hear what she has to say. After leaving the Pentagon she came out against the war in Iraq. The video below is from CSPAN's Q&A program where she was interviewed about her participation in the documentary film, "Why We Fight." There's a full transcript there. Karen also writes for Lewrockwell.com and her blog appears at HuffPo.

Revolutionary QOTD: May 8, 2006

"The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness."
~John Kenneth Galbraith

Sunday, May 07, 2006

So What

I found this video this morning, posted last night on Crooks and Liars. Thanks to Crooks perfect Sunday morning groove. This vintage clip is of a classic live performance of So What by Miles Davis and John Coltrane. It is the epitome of cool. It is like a cool breeze blowing through all the stories of the war, high gas prices, congressional corruption.... I don't want to spoil it with that stuff. It will make you forget about them for a few minutes. For just a few minutes, it will make you say, so what....

Fat Lady Sings a Different Tune

I'm going to need a couple ice cold ones to wash down my own words that I have to eat after the Lakers blew a 3-1 lead in the first round playoff series to the Suns. Specifically,
I see the Lakers going to at least the Western Conference Final, and I see some disappointed Clippers fans in the future.
I saw the Flash intro the Suns have on their web site. Sorry to say it, but the fat lady is tuning up and it's pretty much over.
Well, the fat lady sang a different tune than the one I was expecting. But being a lifelong Cubs fan has prepared me well for these kinds of disappointment. This is a young Lakers team and it was an accomplishment to go as far as they did this year. They are steadily improving. So it is with a little more conviction than I had when I said it every year about the Cubs that I say, wait till next year....

Revolutionary QOTD: May 7, 2006

"First they ignore you. Then they ridicule you. Then they fight you. Then you win."
~Mohandas K. (Mahatma) Gandhi
Found this in the comments for this post on HuffPo. The first two sentences perfectly describe the MSM's reaction to Stephen Colbert's performance at the White House Correspondents' dinner. And it tells us what to expect next.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Nut Case, and it's not Hannity....

You have to see this video, also found via There's No Such Thing as Half a Stick. It is from Hannity & Colmes, which I must agree with HalfStick, I find hard to stomach, but watch on occassion. It is an interview with a woman who is a member of the extremely nutty Westboro Baptist Church. They're the one's who protest at the funerals of soldiers from Iraq with signs saying, "Thank God for IEDs!" The video speaks for itself. It's a rare Hannity & Colmes where Hannity isn't the nuttiest person on the screen.

There's No Such Thing as Half a Stick

If you're not yet sick of seeing Stephen Colbert and the White House Correspondents' dinner (I never will be, he's my hero and a revolution of one), there's a video of the whole dinner in its entirety on Google Video. I found it through this blog, There's No Such Thing as Half a Stick. Bloggers are so philosophical. The video is uninterrupted, commercial free and posted with CSPAN's permission so it is not in danger of being yanked. It includes W's entire comedy routine with his doppelganger and is actually quite funny in a lame George Bush kind of way. More self-deprecating than I would have expected. This administration uses humor quite effectively. I guess they think if we see them as just regular Joes and they crack a joke or two, while we're laughing we'll forget that we are embroiled in a disastrous war that they mislead us into. We'll forget about high gas prices, political corruption, domestic spying, and.... Oh I forgot what I was about to say...something about Bush being a funny guy.

Another Note Re: Flag Desecration Amendment

I wrote a couple posts ago about the Flag Desecration Amendment which passed a Senate subcommittee yesterday. And now I'm wondering just who are the flag burners congress is worried about? Is there someplace in the country where rampant flag burning is taking place? If so I haven't heard about it. The only flag burners I've seen in many years are on CNN - The most trusted name in news, and are in the Middle East. I think that is outside of US jurisdiction. Maybe not if W gets a chance to start a couple more wars. Until then maybe congress should concentrate on a few more important issues.

Revolutionary QOTD: May 6, 2006

You're not to be so blind with patriotism that you can't face reality. Wrong is wrong, no matter who does it or says it.
~Malcolm X from Malcolm X Speaks
Right on!

Friday, May 05, 2006

Happy Cinco de Mayo

A little late, but Happy Cinco de Mayo. With the craziness over "illegal" immigration I wouldn't be surprized if someone demanded we translate the name of the holiday into English.

Si Se Puede!

Save the Flag, Burn the Bill of Rights

Never underestimate the ability of the Republican controlled congress to respond to the national crises we face with empty symbolism. Yesterday, with our country facing an immigration crisis, oil crisis, an unpopular war started based on misuse of intelligence, security issues on our borders and in our ports, and congressional corruption, the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Property Rights passed the Flag Desecration Amendment. That was the subject of curmudgeon correspondent Jack Cafferty's question of the hour on the Situation Room yesterday on CNN - The most trusted name in news. The Republicans need wedge issues for the coming elections in November. In 2004 it was Gay Marriage. Now they're using Old Glory pump up their poll numbers. If it's not Republicans using stuff like this as a wedge issue, it's Democrats using it as a way to pander to conservative voters. In December last year Hillary Clinton introduced an anti-flag burning bill in the Senate. Their cynical use of the issue is what is disrespectful to the flag.

Just as important to me is that this is yet another case of patriotism at odds with the true ideals of America. A distinction lost on many who call themselves patriots. The whole point of the idea of freedom of speech is that it protects even the most offensive speech and expressions. As long as it is not violent and doesn't espouse violence. Even racist, anti-Semitic, sexist and other types of offensive speech are protected. If they weren't, what would be the point? Non-offensive speech doesn't need protection. And what under the amendment would be considered desecration? A peace symbol on a flag? Some Tommy Hilfiger fashions, remember the clothes with flags on them?
Boy Scout flag retirement ceremonies that burn the flag as a way to respectfully retire it? After that would it be speech that advocates flag burning? If the flag, as a symbol of our freedoms, is used to limit one of our fundamental freedoms, in the same act it becomes an empty symbol. If we protect the flag from burning, we in effect burn the rights it stands as a symbol of.

First Lady Straddles Issue Like A Pro

Not that I want to continue to discuss the silly debate, as I said in an earlier post, about whether the national anthem should be sung in English; but in that post I gave Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice credit for having a sensible opinion regarding the issue. So, to be fair I have to give Laura Bush credit for giving the most political response when asked about it. In a CNN - The most trusted name in news, interview yesterday she said, "I don't think there's anything wrong with singing it in Spanish." When reminded by CNN reporter John King that her husband has a different opinion, she said, "I think it should be sung in English, of course." Now there's someone who knows how to straddle both sides of an issue. There's video here.

As I listened to her speak in the interview, clear coherent speech, and with the fact that she's been making appearances lately because she's one of the few people left in the White House more popular than she is not, you have to wonder why she isn't the politician in the family. She could teach the President a thing or two. Then again, maybe she's tried.

Revolutionary QOTD: May 5, 2006

I used to think that I was cool
Drivin' around on fossil fuel
I found out that what I was doin'
Was drivin' down the road to ruin
~James Taylor from the song Traffic Jam.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Revolutionary QOTD: May 4, 2006

I think it's the duty of the comedian to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately.
~George Carlin.
Apropos I think in view of the approaching cult status of Stephen Colbert after his performance at the White House Corrspondents' dinner. Just look at how this conservative gasbag gets deflated in a whopping 340 comments on HuffPo of all places. Not the place to dog out a liberal hero. This guy, Nathan Gardels, tried and had the nerve to whine about it in his next post where he was lambasted in 261 comments. This blogger is the kind of snidely little prick whose face you want to rub in it. Who, as is pointed out in several comments, lists in his bio that he was a "Founding Member, Intellectuels du Monde." Please. That kind of pretention belongs in the MSM where they eat that crap up. At HuffPo it is begging to be made fun of like the nerd character in a locker room full of jocks in a teen flick.

Mr. Carlin knows a little bit about crossing the line. With classic routines from Seven Dirty Words to American Bullshit, he is the inspiraton of generations of comedians to follow. I don't know that he has ever, correct me if I'm wrong, been handed a golden opportunity to do so in the face of those he is lampooning. Within spitting distance, as Colbert was this weekend. I sure he would have done so just as fearlessly.

WaPo has this fair assessment of the MSM's initial response to Colbert, a virtual "blackout."And after being called on it by the blogosphere, their second attempt to devalue it, by saying, as Gardels did, that it was "not funny." Which, of course, is understandable. It's hard to appreciate humor that you are the butt of. Not humor like President Bush's milquetoast self-mockery. But parody that fully exposes the "man behind the curtain." Like the finally exposed Wizard of Oz, the MSM is telling us to pay no heed to him.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Nuestro Presidente

This is second hand from This Modern World, posted by Greg Saunders, and it's funny. Do these people ever listen to themselves, or is it that they think we aren't listening very carefully? W says Immigrants should learn to speak English to sing the national anthem and live in this country, but when he's pandering to them for votes, it's perfectly Ok to habla a little Espanol.

On Becoming Quotable

As I was writing the previous posts yesterday about Stephen Colbert and thinking about his fearless performance in front of the most powerful people in the world, I got an email from Arianna asking if she could use my comments in her book on fearlessness. Of course I said...oh Arianna Huffington from Huffington Post...I said absolutely, Arianna, you can use my comments anytime....

Ok, I feel like you people are waiting for a punch line. I really did get email from Arianna yesterday. She's recently been posting excerpts of her new book on her blog and I read them and made a few salient and perspicuous comments, you know like the stuff I write here on this blog all the time, which she understandably would like to include in her new book.

I'm not smoking or drinking anything and I am awake. And this is the thing that is cool about Arianna Huffington. Not that she wants to include my comments in her book. But that she gets this medium. She is one of the few people who came from the conventional press who gets what the web and the blogosphere are and what their potential is. I wish more authors would share their work prior to publication on the web and in blogs. She gets some snarky comments on her blog from time to time from people who call it self-promotion. If it is it is very smart self-promotion, but looking at it this way completely misses the point and is a comment made by people who don't get it. Arianna, don't listen to the haters.

What she is doing is good for both authors and readers because people get to read exceprts from a book that isn't out yet and they don't even have to get dressed. It is something that would have not been possible before the web and before blogging. It's about being open and sharing information and using the potential of the medium to that end. But that is not the only way she gets it. Her encouragement of celebrity bloggers on HuffPo, though occasionally overzealous, is good for the blogosphere and good for those who choose to use it. The Contagious Festival and the whole idea of HuffPo is very forward thinking. She is on the vanguard of what the future of journalism will be. While networks like CNN - the most trusted name in news, have "blog reporters" who tell you what's on the blogs, and commentators who read email from viewers on TV, but you can't find the email on their site. They believe that they are Internet savvy. They still don't get it.

Arianna has also been named one of Time Magazine's 100 Most Influential People. Not that I put much stock in lists of that kind or any kind. Not really something I would have paid much attention to at all in fact. But in her case I think Time got it right. And for those of you who think I'm saying these things because she asked to quote me in her book, you couldn't be more...well, Ok, that did help. But I would have said them anyway. And I won't cheapen all of this by saying she's hot. I respect her for her mind.

Oh and finally, I hope Arianna won't be jealous that George Clooney will be a guest blogger on A Revolution of One blog soon. He happened to catch one of my posts and started reading the whole blog and decided he did want to blog after all.... Ok, that part is a joke. But the rest is real. I swear.

Revolutionary QOTD: May 3, 2006

"The greatest thing about this man is he's steady. You know where he stands. He believes the same thing Wednesday that he believed on Monday, no matter what happened Tuesday."
~Stephen Colbert about President Bush at the 2006 White House Correspondents' dinner.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Big Brass Colberts

After Stephen Colbert's performance at the White House Correspondents' Association dinner, they'll have to change that expression. Because Colbert has become the embodiment of big brass ones. It was nothing save a fearless and uncompromising in your face skewering of the powerful. It was as classic as Jon Stewart's appearance on Crossfire when he thrashed the blowhards on that program. Except with higher value targets. At turns he left the audience in stunned silence and at times in spurts of nervous laughter. And at points they could not stifle outright belly laughs. But Colbert did not falter. He did not break character. At home we were ROTFLOFAO.

What makes Colbert's attack so deadly is that it is not a frontal assault. It is not an angry, loud, or strident. It is not crude. It is not Ann Coulter. It is a kind of philosophical judo that uses the weight of the opponents arguments against them. His weapon is irony. And he uses it with the deadly accuracy of a Samurai warrior. If you haven't seen The Colbert Report (pronounced colber repor, the Ts are silent), on Comedy Central, and you should, his character is a parody of the Bill O'Reilly, Tucker Carlson, blowhard conservative pundit type taken to the Nth degree. You can see clips on Comedycentral.com.

Colbert's is a brand of political and cultural commentary in the vein of the French Situationist, as this commentary on Salon points out.
In the late 1960s, the Situationists in France called such ironic mockery "detournement," a word that roughly translates to "abduction" or "embezzlement." It was considered a revolutionary act, helping to channel the frustration of the Paris student riots of 1968. They co-opted and altered famous paintings, newspapers, books and documentary films, seeking subversive ideas in the found objects of popular culture. "Plagiarism is necessary," wrote Guy Debord, the famed Situationist, referring to his strategy of mockery and semiotic inversion. "Progress demands it. Staying close to an author's phrasing, plagiarism exploits his expressions, erases false ideas, replaces them with correct ideas."
There is a site set up for fans to thank Stephen for the courage of his performance at www.thankyoustephencolbert.org. Because he was not feeling the love from the audience, and it is easy to see why. They were the butt of the joke. Which is not much different from what he does on his show, but there it is one on one and it works. Last night on the Daily Show Jon Stewart wondered if they'd expected Colbert to do what he does on his show. There are links on thankyoustephencolbert.org to the whole performance. YouTube has a 60 Minutes piece on Colbert, the real Stephen Colbert, not the character from the Report.

It's Hard Out Here for a Cynic

I hate to be cynical. There is so much going on the world that makes it hard not to be. But they say if you scratch the surface of a cynic, underneath you find a disappointed idealist. So, in my disappointed idealism, when I think about the genocide in Darfur I can't help remembering Hip Hop artist Kanye West's words after Hurricane Katrina, "George Bush doesn't care about black people." Is that too harsh? Or maybe it's more accurate to say that when black people are loosing their lives, the Decider in Chief is a little slow in deciding to act.

The Darfur tragedy also reminds me of one of the big reasons those who still defend the war in Iraq use to justify it. Saddam Hussein committed genocide on his own people. They always forget to finish that sentence. I'm sure what they mean to say is Saddam Hussein committed genocide on his own people who just happened to be living above the second largest oil reserves in the world. But I'm being disappointedly idealistic again. To be fair, Darfur is an issue that has brought together people from all over the political spectrum. It is described in this excerpt from an article in the San Francisco Chronicle.

"This is as big a tent as I've ever worked under," said Chuck Thies, the Washington rally director. "As far left and far right, and fully stacked up the middle; Muslims, Jews, Christians, students, labor. It's a rare opportunity to work with such a group that's unified."

The Decider is also at least speaking out.

...after meeting Friday at the White House with eight representatives from the SaveDarfur Coalition, Bush said: "I want the Sudanese government to understand the United States of America is serious about solving this problem."

Bush said that the 7,000 African Union peacekeeping troops in Darfur need to be augmented by NATO forces. He also praised those participating in this weekend's rallies: "For those of you going out to march for justice, you represent the best of our country. We believe every life is precious, every human being is important. And the signal you send to the world is a strong signal, and I welcome your participation."

The good thing about Darfur, if anything about it can be said to be good, is that so many people are speaking out and taking action. There were large demonstrations in Washington, DC this weekend. There was also a large demonstration against the Iraq war. With the Immigration protests also held this weekend, this country is starting to look like France occasionally does. Thankfully sans the burning cars and people getting hosed down by water canons.

Real hero of 'Hotel Rwanda', Paul Rusesabagina speaks at Darfur rally in DC, Saturday April 29, 2006.

But I can't mention Darfur without saying something about George Clooney and his efforts to bring attention to the tragedy. Not only him, but all the pampered celebrities who have used their fame to do more than tell us what's in fashion, what diet we need to go on to squeeze our ample American arses into those fashions, and what car to drive to be seen in them. Celebrities like Branjolina, Oprah, who did a moving and informative show which Clooney appeared on, and Don Cheadle. Also people in the media and politicians. One who has been speaking out for years is radio host and commentator Joe Madison.

Reverend Al Sharpton speaks at Darfur rally in DC, Saturday April 29, 2006.

Also this from Reuters second hand via Daily Kos, about five congressional Democrats arrested for protesting on the steps of the Sudan Embassy.

WASHINGTON, April 28 (Reuters) - Five members of the U.S. Congress were arrested on Friday at a demonstration held at the Sudan embassy to protest atrocities in that country's Darfur region, congressional aides said.

The lawmakers, all Democrats, were Reps. Tom Lantos of California, James McGovern and John Olver of Massachusetts, James Moran of Virginia, and Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas, aides to McGovern and Lantos said.

It is at least good to see that people are aware and are speaking out this time, which is a lot sooner than they did in the case of Rwanda. There are a few things to be optimistic about. And as hard as it is out here for a disappointed idealist, I'm sure it's a million times harder for those living through this tragedy.

Revolutionary QOTD: May 2, 2006

When you are right you cannot be too radical; when you are wrong, you cannot be too conservative.
~Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King

Monday, May 01, 2006

Bizarro Mayor

I must be in Bizarro World today. Things are backwards. Just after making that last post, I hear Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa saying how offended he was by the Spanish version of the national anthem. Is this guy pandering to public opinion or does he really believe this? Amazing. Gives me even more respect for Condi Rice's statement, because obviously she's got bigger stones than the Mayor of LA.

The Star Spanglish Banner

I never thought I would have a good thing to say about Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, but she has made the most sensible statement I've heard yet in the silly debate over the national anthem being sung in Spanish. What she said is (from Reuters):
"I've heard the national anthem done in rap versions, country versions, classical versions. The individualisation of the American national anthem is quite under way," she said on the CBS show "Face the Nation."

"From my point of view, people expressing themselves as wanting to be Americans is a good thing," she added. "I think what we need to focus on is an immigration policy that is comprehensive and that recognises our laws and recognises our humanity," she added.

Amen sister Secretary. Ok, I'm not a big fan of hers, but when she's right, she's right. There are so many ironies here that it is hard to know where to go first. There's President Bush suggesting that people need to learn English. He should take his own advice and then we'd no longer have to worry why our President isn't learning. It never ceases to amaze me how supposed patriotism can be so at odds with the ideals that are supposed to be the highest ideals of this country. One of those ideals is freedom of speech and expression. Seems to me that applies in this case.

I wonder if the people so outraged over this song even hear themselves. How can the ideals that the national anthem represents through words they so revere in English, somehow suddenly become offensive when the same words are sung in Spanish? Can democracy, freedom, justice and all the ideals of this great nation be lost in translation?