Saturday, April 30, 2005

"Hand That Feeds" -- Nine Inch Nails

In my daily quest to expose the fact that most pop music lyrics are politically charged (though the naive and conservative among us either criticize or ignore it):

  • You're keeping in step
    In the line
    Got your chin held high and you feel just fine
    Because you do
    What you're told

    But inside your heart it is black and it's hollow and it's cold

    Just how deep do you believe?
    Will you bite the hand that feeds?
    Will you chew until it bleeds?
    Can you get up off your knees?
    Are you brave enough to see?
    Do you want to change it?

    What if this whole crusade's
    A charade
    And behind it all there's a price to be paid
    For the blood
    On which we dine
    Justified in the name of the holy and the divine

    Just how deep do you believe?
    Will you bite the hand that feeds?
    Will you chew until it bleeds?
    Can you get up off your knees?
    Are you brave enough to see?
    Do you want to change it?

    So naive
    I keep holding on to what I want to believe
    I can see
    But I keep holding on and on and on and on

    Will you bite the hand that feeds you?
    Will you stay down on your knees?

Thursday, April 28, 2005


Not learning anything from their previous service transgressions, Denny's is at it again:

"We don't serve bin Ladens here"

In my book, add Denny's to the list of businesses whose doors I will never darken again:

Arby's (this is more of a personal issue that I'll gladly expand upon if asked)

The Four Ghosts of the White House

One night, George W. Bush is tossing restlessly in his White House bed.

He awakens to see George Washington standing by him.

Bush asks him, "George, what's the best thing I can do to help the country?"
"Set an honest and honorable example, just as I did," Washington advises, and then fades away.

The next night, Bush is astir again, and sees the ghost of Thomas Jefferson moving through the darkened bedroom. Bush calls out, "Tom, please! What is the best thing I can do to help the country?"
"Respect the Constitution, as I did," Jefferson advises, and dims from sight.

The third night sleep is still not in the cards for Bush. He awakens to see the ghost of FDR hovering over his bed. Bush whispers, "Franklin, What is the best thing I can do to help the country?"
"Help the less fortunate, just as I did," FDR replies and fades into the mist.

Bush isn't sleeping well the fourth night when he sees another figure moving in the shadows. It is the ghost of Abraham Lincoln. Bush pleads, "Abe, what is the best thing I can do right now to help the country?"
Lincoln replies, "Go see a play."

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Guns in Bars

The moronic mouthpieces of the NRA and big business have thankfully met their match in governor Napolitano. Thank god we have a dem governor or every piece of crap right wing legislation would get written into law.

Guns-in-bars bill vetoed

Saturday, April 23, 2005

Diarios de Motocicleta

Rented a nice little road movie called the Motorcycle Diaries. It's directed by Brazilian director Walter Salles. If you get offended by the site of kids wearing Che shirts ... then maybe you shouldn't watch this. If you have a hard time separating public from private personas for celebrities ... probably not your flick. If your tastes in literature/cinema/politics are somewhere to the right of Tom Clancy and Bruce Willis ... run!!!!

Here's a little plot summary from IMDB:
  • "The Motorcycle Diaries is an adaptation of a journal written by Ernesto "Che" Guevara(Bernal) when he was 23 years old. He and his friend, Alberto Granado (de la Serna) are typical college students who, seeking fun and adventure before graduation, decide to travel across Argentina, Chile, Brazil and Peru in order to do their medical residency at a leper colony. Beginning as a buddy/road movie in which Ernesto and Alberto are looking for chicks, fun and adventure before they must grow up and have a more serious life. As is said in the film itself, it's about "two lives running parallel for a while." The two best friends start off with the same goals and aspirations, but by the time the film is over, it's clear what each man's destiny has become."

It's not really an overtly political movie but rather it just provides a glimpse into those formative experiences that may have molded the idealism of a young revolutionary. The cinematography is great. It is a very witty movie that works because it is many things ... a road movie, a buddy movie, a political drama ... without dwelling on any of them for too long.

I don't believe that you have to agree with the politics of Che Guevera to enjoy this movie. In fact, it still works as a movie even if you didn't know who he was at all. But knowing who he is, it helps to humanize him. If that doesn't scare you, then I recommend this movie.


Bit the bullet and followed through with our planned purchase of a new washer and dryer. We bought the very high efficiency Bosch models:

Bosch WFMC3200UC Washer

Bosch WTMC3300US Dryer

The washer rates as one of the highest in terms of both energy and water efficiency. Both units are very quiet.

Top-Rated Energy-Efficient Appliances

They'll be delivered tomorrow. We'll give the low-down on performance in a week or so. On the surface, it seems like a crazy purchase ... or at least it would seem like it to anyone where I grew up. But we had the money and it's a lot better spent for something like this than for something that I really wanted ... like a big-screen HD TV. Don't worry, that comes next.

Buying a washer and dryer isn't really saving the world and it's incredibly vain and self-important to even be talking about it. But as they say, "We say little if not egged on by vanity."

Friday, April 22, 2005

"Now You've Got Something to Die For" -- Lamb of God

  • "...Lust for blood, a blind crusade,
    Apocalyptic, we count the days.

    Bombs to set the people free, blood to feed the dollar tree,
    Flags for coffins on the screen, oil for the machine.
    Army of liberation, gunpoint indoctrination,
    The fires of sedition,
    Fulfill the prophecy...

    ... Send the children to the fire, sons and daugthers stack the pyre,
    Stoke the flame of the empire, live to lie another day,
    Face of hypocrisy, raping the democracy,
    Apocalyptic, we count the days.

    We'll never get out of this hole, until we've dug our own grave,
    And drag the rest down with us, the burning home of the brave ..."

Lamb of God -- "Now You've Got Something to Die For"

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

This is you new pope?

Pope Benedict the 16th:

Papal hopeful is a former Hitler Youth

New pope intervened against Kerry in US 2004 election campaign

Have fun with this one. At least he's 78 years old.


Heard a great Bad Religion song on the radio today called "Sorrow". Here's a snippet of lyrics from it:

  • "... When all soldiers lay their weapons down,
    Or when all kings and all queens relinquish their crown,
    Or when the only true messiah rescues us from ourselves...
    It’s easy to imagine there will be sorrow no more ..."

They are a great punk band that's been around for a long time. They are very talented, very liberal and write very intelligent lyrics.

I challenge anyone to name a single right-wing artist who has ever written a single intelligent lyric. Ted Nugent ... wrong. Toby Keith ... try again. Godsmack ... please!!

You wonder why all true artists are liberals? Those two things that make you a good artist ... empathy and intelligence ... also make you a good liberal. To be a true liberal, you must care about the least fortunate among us and those unable to defend themselves. Additionally, you must have enough intelligence to look at all sides of issues and to listen.

An artist without empathy is a drafter. A musician without empathy is a jingle-writer. A politician without empathy is a Republican.

And to those who criticize artists for expressing their political beliefs, what do you think rock music has always been? It's always been rebellious music. It's always been about changing the world. Don't be a hypocrite and hum along to the Clash, to Steve Wonder, to Marvin Gaye and then still pull that lever for your local fascist. I'm amazed when I've went to shows for contemporary artists like Tool, A Perfect Circle, Rage Against the Machine, Foo Fighters, Ministry, Pearl Jam, etc. that a good portion of each audience evidently have no clue to what the artists are trying to say or what the meaning of any of their lyrics are. It slays me every time I see a bunch of frat boys jumping up and down and singing "Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me" at a Rage show.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Wal-Mart Part Deux

I spoke too soon. Wal-Mart has absolutely no redeeming qualities. They're back at their union-busting best (or worst):

Quebec Store Closes After Vote to Unionize

MIT Prank

You have to be fairly nerdy to think this is funny but most of my friends qualify in that department:

MIT students pull prank on conference

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

"... Dictatress of the World"

Those that would call themselves constitutionalists and who profess to understanding our founding fathers and the history of our country, would do well to read this:

  • "Wherever the standard of freedom and independence has been or shall be unfurled, there will her [America’s] heart, her benedictions and her prayers be. But she goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own. She will recommend the general cause, by the countenance of her voice, and the benignant sympathy of her example. She well knows that by once enlisting under other banners than her own, were they even the banners of foreign independence, she would involve herself, beyond the power of extrication, in all the wars of interest and intrigue, of individual avarice, envy, and ambition, which assume the colors and usurp the standard of freedom. The fundamental maxims of her policy would insensibly change from liberty to force…. She might become the dictatress of the world: she would be no longer the ruler of her own spirit. [America's] glory is not dominion, but liberty. Her march is the march of the mind. She has a spear and a shield: but the motto upon her shield is, Freedom, Independence, Peace. This has been her Declaration: this has been, as far as her necessary intercourse with the rest of mankind would permit, her practice."

    -John Quincy Adams, 1821

This administration and the warmongerers that support it either have no understanding or do understand and knowingly disregard what this country was founded on.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Let Them Eat Bombs

Let Them Eat Bombs

Terry Jones is an alum of Monty Python, obviously, and a very funny (and astute) social critic. The above article concerns the increasing malnutrition of Iraqi children due to our non-violent (sanctions) and violent (Iraqi war) actions there.


Wal-Mart's still evil and we still don't shop there but in the interest of full disclosure, I have to applaud them on the following:

Wal-Mart to Fund Wildlife Habitat

Monday, April 11, 2005

What Political Capital?

Seems that Bush is overspending his political capital much like he's overspending the country's money:

Bush's Poll Position Is Worst on Record

Sunday, April 10, 2005

March of Dimes -- Walk America

A good friend of ours (and sister of our friend Eric) sent the note below to us. Tanya and Jereld had an experience with their son very similar to ours. I highly encourage all of you to contibute:

  • Hello!
    As many of you know, Jereld and I had a son in January. Jaden was born seven weeks early and spent the first four weeks of his life in the NICU at the University of Washington Medical Center. We are so fortunate to have a healthy, beautiful and growing baby home with us now. While in the NICU I was so moved by the babies there- so many, so tiny, so helpless. We were surrounded by many families going through far more difficult experiences than our own, their babies much smaller and sicker than ours. When Jaden did get sick in the NICU, the level of care he recieved was amazing. The nurses and doctors were incredible and it is because of them that we have our precious son home and healthy now.
    The March of Dimes is an organization that conducts research on prematurity, supports the families of premature babies, and provides training to health practitioners within the NICU. Much of the knowledge and technology used in th NICU to help Jaden grow was from the years of research conducted by organizations like the March of Dimes. Having a premature baby in the NICU is like all of a sudden being thrown into a different universe. Everything is completely different than one could have possibly imagined, and the world outside of those walls seems so inconsequential all of a sudden. Families need the research to help prevent premature birth, to help preemie babies, and the programs of support that the MOD provides. So, in gratitude for our Jaden, I have decided to join the MOD's Walk America. I hope this can become a yearly tradition in gratitude for our healthy boy, in order to pass along all the incredible kindness and support shown us by all of you and the NICU staff. We still don't know why Jaden was born prematurely, which makes me even more motivated to support this worthy cause!
    Below you will find a link to my March of Dimes fundraiser page. If you can afford to contribute even the smallest amount, it would be greatly appreciated. Of course, I completely understand if you cannot make any financial contribution- we know what tough times are like!
    Your support in mind and spirit is just as valuable to me as any monetary contribution. If you know of anyone who might be interested in contributing to the walk, please forward this email to them.
    Thanks in advance for your support!
    Walk America 2005
    Tanya Hamilton

To read more about their experience with Jaden, read the great blog that Tanya kept at: Jaden's Blog

Saturday, April 09, 2005

End Prohibition

  • Update to previous post: My friend Eric had referred me to the book, "Ain't Nobody's Business if You Do: The Absurdity of Consensual Crimes in our Free Country" by Peter McWilliams. It expands on the discussion of legalizing drugs to include all crimes that are consensual and do not harm others. He highly recommends the book. I'm beginning to read it and have found an HTML posting of the book at:

    Ain't Nobody's Business if You Do: The Absurdity of Consensual Crimes in our Free Country


I was listening to the Charles Goyette Show on Air America Radio today and he was speaking to a man from LEAP (Law Enforcement against Prohibition). These are current and former members of law enforcement who support regulation of drugs over prohibition.

This is a cause near and dear to Michelle and me as it is something we have always believed in. People just can't seem to get over the stigma of legalizing drugs ... though they have no problem looking the other way with two other "legal" and more dangerous drugs: cigarettes and alcohol. Our prisons are filled with offenders of victimless crimes. We are breeding new generations of criminals in prison. The gentleman who writes the following article, however, can explain it all much better than me and I highly recommend it:

End Prohibition Now!

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Slipknot/Lamb of God/Shadows Fall --- April 6

I'm too old for this shit!

My brother Darin and I went to Glendale Arena last night and checked out Slipknot, Lamb of God, and Shadows Fall. We were definitely on the older side of the crowd.

We spent over 3 hours 30 feet from stage trying to avoid the huge mosh pit that encompassed the entire floor. We were reasonably successful. No internal injuries that I know of. Though, I do think I have permanent hearing damage.

Slipknot ... obviously great. Glad I finally got the opportunity to see them.

Lamb of God ... incredible. Tight and agressive. I am impressed both by their performance and by their latest album (a recent gift). An added bonus was that Darin caught a drumstick tossed by the drummer.

Shadows Fall ... OK. Good performance but just not as talented musically as the other bands.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005


If you use products from any of the following companies:

American Airlines

Visit Drop the Hammer and sign up to send them e-mails condemning their recent contributions to the Tom DeLay legal defense fund.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Wake Up!!

It is time to call to task everyone who, through their ignorance, blind trust or agreement with this administration is, in effect, advocating this war. Your cognitive dissonance is not an allowable excuse. If you voted for Bush, you are responsible. No one gets a free pass. Everyone who cares about this country and this world needs to start making their voices be heard. Do this with your money and your words.

"Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists and the hopes of its children. This is not a way of life at all in any true sense. Under the clouds of war, it is humanity hanging on a cross of iron." -- Dwight Eisenhower

"Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." -- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.