WWSP's Shadow of th Marigold

Friday, October 31, 2008

Low Information Voter

I recently heard the phrase, "low information voter." I guess that's another way of saying the dumb-shit vote. Seems that's who McCain and Palin are frantically trying to win over in these last desperate days. McCain is flinging so much putrid mud, he has totally besmirched any claim to his "Hero's Halo." Another myth bites the dust. Palin has gone rogue, she is a killer Stepford Windup doll. I think it was Jon Stewart who dubbed her "Bible Spice." What a complete horror-show. Counting down the days...

Thursday, October 30, 2008

A Socialist, A Secret Communist in Kindergarten

Obama has rolled out the humor on the campaign trail. God bless him. Maybe no better way to deal with the desperate arrows (they do no harm) from McCain, who is now starting to look like the Rodney Dangerfield/Don Rickles of politics. Is there a future for McCain in Vegas?

I guess I too was a secret communist in kindergarten. I remember sharing my cardboard bricks with the other kids who wanted to play with them too. And I remember sleeping with my comrades on the simple rugs we brought for nap time. Long live the Proletariat!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Dawn of the 23 Percenters

Certainly the Bush Presidency is a prime example of how deep is the well of human futility. Unless of course, the man was working for the Oil Companies. Which isn't out of the realm of plausibility. Everyone besides the Oil Execs have to be pretty disgusted with the last 8 years.

Even Richard "I'm not a Crook" Nixon in the sordid days of Watergate did not have "approval ratings" as low as the current President.

None of this is that surprising to me. The guy didn't win in 2000. It was the Supremes who tossed it to the Cowboy Diana Ross (Sorry Diana!). The guy shouldn't have won in 2004 - the Zombie-Voters were just sleeping-walking to the polls.

Bush is jet-trash on the side of the road. And all of us are just road-kill on another one of his careless escapades. But hell, that era is stumbling to a close. Every blooming thing is wrecked and reeling. The state of the nation is fucked. A smoking, teetering wreck.

Dare. I. Say. It? Worst. President. Ever.

Oliver Stone's movie may be worth seeing, but I just can't stomach it. There's no way I want to re-live the significant moments of that man's life. It's all too painful. I can't sacrifice another brain cell for that dude's inept existence.

A scary thought: the man actually thinks he's been doing a great job. The complete and utterly dis-functional delusional aspect of this thought is the essence of bat-shit crazy.

Anyway.

Perfect time for a new man, new era. I for one have a bottle of wine sitting in my kitchen waiting to be uncorked on that joyous Election Day. Do I also do a Jagermeister shot for every Battleground State that goes blue? Maybe too extreme. I don't want my bed to be spinning.

I don't want to count the chickens before they hatch. But I can't see this turning out any other way. It must be. The world needs it.

Still I wonder about those 23 percent. Who are the people out there who think that Bush is doing just a bang up fine job? Who the fuck are they? I mean it. WHO ARE THEY?!

Maybe they can get work as extras on the next Wes Craven movie or something?

Monday, October 27, 2008

"Reality has a clear liberal bias." - Rob Corddry

Some folks have tried to make "liberal" a bad word. It's not.

There have been a few people who have been right about a lot of things these last few years. One of those who has been more right about more things is the recent Nobel Prize winner for Economics - Paul Krugman.

Krugman is a liberal. No apology necessary.

His blog Conscience of a Liberal is always a must read.

And his columns in the New York Times are always thought provoking. I love this one from yesterday.

Wow. And check out this from Scott Horton in Harper's "Palin's Nightmare."

It's time for all of us to wake up from this horrific 8 year nightmare.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Brothers In Arms

Last weekend we went to see the new movie What Just Happened? It's one of those flicks that seems to be about something else, something other, something deeper, than what it at first appears to be about. Those are the kind of movies I really like.

One of my favorite moments is when the Dire Straits song, Brothers in Arms starts playing. Almost brought me to tears. Here's Mark Knopfler one of the great guitar players (notice he doesn't use a pick which really enhances his killer tone) giving a superb rendition at a birthday celebration for Nelson Mandela.

What's great about life, some times the good guys really get to have it. And we all know it when it happens. A sweet lesson for us all.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

You Tube Nation

This is brilliant and hilarious and oh so true. It may be the best two minutes I've seen yet.

8 years of Bush - Iraq, Katrina, Foreclosure, Unemployment, Spiraling Medical Costs, Stock Market Mayhem, Death of Capitalism, End of the Conservative Movement.

McCain and Palin are are just the last putrid emanations from the Zombie Party.

CHANGE. VOTE.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Goodbye George

I recently wrote about hanging out with a bunch of old-timers in my neighborhood. There's a coffeehouse down the block from my apartment, and it is a great meeting place for people from all walks of life. I've made friends with some real characters.

I found out yesterday that one of my good friends passed to the other side. He was a tough old bird, light as a feather, always had something to say, always had a gleam in his eye. I made a point to keep up with baseball via the NY Times, just so I could talk baseball with the man.

He was a life-long Chicagoan, but also life-long Yankee fan, which he reminded you by the Yankee cap fixed to his majestic, hairless, dome of a head. It seems his boyhood visit to Wrigley field to see Babe Ruth play against the Cubs had something to do with it.

That dome was filled with humor and stories and wisdom. He had seen a world that is now long gone.

George is gone. The silence will be deafening.

Life is humbling. Very, very humbling.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Pie-Eaters


Some eat caviar, some peanut butter and jelly...

Hey if there's a pie and 1% of the people get the largest slice, and 90% of the people get the smallest slice, well, hell, isn't it obvious that things aren't gonna turn out so well for any of the pie-eaters? Gated communities gated against the hordes can't make gates tough enough to withstand hungry, angry folk.

I mean, didn't Kings and Czars, lose their jobs and heads for this kind of unjust disparity?

It wasn't supposed to work this way. At least that wasn't the American Dream we were sold. Did Karl Marx write a song about this?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Clown Balloon

It is fascinating to the watch the conservative movement devolve into a laughingly bad Clown Show. There are all these over-stuffed clowns, some very highly paid, who just spew the most ridiculous venom and frankly just completely stupid shit.

It used to be these guys would talk in code. See Nixon (The Dark Prince of American Politics) and Reagan (the smiling Grandpa of American Politics) for how to appeal to the fearful, racist, and frankly hateful silent masses without being so blatantly overt.

The media is crawling with these Conservative Clowns: Hannity, Limbaugh, Bennet, Hewitt, O'Reilly.

Some of them actually pretend to be serious political analysts. The best antidote to this stupid shit is to get a healthy dose of Jon Stewart, or Bill Maher, Keith Olbermann, or now the fabulously cool Rachel Maddow. Here's Rachel easily deflating the Conservative Clown Balloon...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

IPOD Nation

I found an IPOD just sitting there on the running path like a little sparkling treasure. Some poor soul lost their IPOD. And I am now a member of the IPOD Nation. Yes, it is freaking cool. I guess I'll be retiring my Walkman.

I'm a runner, which means I cover a lot of territory on the Lake Front. I find all kinds of things. Money, jewelry. I actually did a series of paintings (I'm not really a painter!) using objects (toys and thing-a-ma-bobs) I have found on my jaunts.

I did think of Ling Ling, I did wonder where I was on the Life Line. What if I just wiped the IPOD clean and loaded up my music and carried on like it was my IPOD all along? Was I closer to Love or Fear on the Life Line?

What did I load up first? Electric Lady Land from Jimi Hendrix, every Sigur Ros disc I own, and Beatles, lots and lots of Beatles music. All head music.

Anyway, back to Ling Ling. If you don't know what the hell I'm talking about, you probably never saw Donnie Darko. You should.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Something is Happening

Over the weekend I cruised the channels streaming on the Idiot Box. What complete madness.

It doesn't matter which channel you land on, Fox, CNN, MSNBC, the Chattering Idiots are legion. The lies and disinformation comes in a never-ending stream. Looks like we have dismantled the Tower of Babel and reassembled sections of it in TV studios through-out the land.

I clicked off the thing in disgust. As Michael Moore once asked, "Dude, Where's My Country?"

Anyway, I went back to print yesterday. Paged through the Sunday New York Times. I was looking for facts, not opinion.

This blew me away...

In St. Louis Missouri 100,000 people came out to see a young Senator from Illinois talk about what would do if he was given a promotion to the new job he was seeking. 100,000 people in St. Louis Missouri!

"Something is happening here, and you don't know what it is, do you, Mr. Jones?" - B. Dylan

UPDATE: I think there are three islands of sanity in TV Land - The Late Show with David Letterman, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, and the Rachel Maddow Show. The rest is pretty much complete dross!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Letting Go

As my little adventure continues, I sometimes wonder when it will all start to make sense. Does it make any sense to try to make sense of the wave you're riding - or is it best to just let go and ride? Is life just a long letting go?

Saturday, October 18, 2008

"He is Ready."


If you know anything about Chicago, you know that the Chicago Tribune's editorial page is a solid fortress manned by a full contingent of die-hard, rock-ribbed, midwestern Republicans. The Trib always endorses the Republican for President. ALWAYS! 160 years of always.

Yesterday they endorsed Barack Obama for President. Of course in many ways a total no-brainer. But this is significant. I mean seismic. I'm sure some Republicans choked on the their morning muffins when they opened up the paper yesterday!

Cool.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Praise for the Younger "Old Guys"

A clarification regarding my previous post. There's no sin in growing old. Or if there is, it's the original sin that we all carry with us (which of course is total hooey! "Jesus died for somebody's sins but not mine..." etc). Once you get on the merry go round there's no stopping. The genetic program kicks in, and well, it's a wild ride - hold on for dear life.

Some of my favorite people are old guys and dead guys - "old timers," or long time "dead and goners."

I pal around with a bunch of old guys. I'm heading there myself. I always wince when I hear people say "aging actress," or "aging rocker" or AGING ANYTHING. It's meaningless.

Everything and everyone is aging. As one of my favorite old guys once said, "rust never sleeps."

Age can bring humility, wisdom, and of course, experience. We are born with all these incredible gifts, and then things change, morph, evolve. Some of the changes are cool and some not so cool. You just have to ride the wave.

Or not. It's up to us, what we bring to the show. I'm always inspired by those who stay open, alive, curious, with a wild, crazy ass sense of wonder and humor. That's the kind of old guy I revere and hope to be.

Is it better to "burn out than to fade away?" Dealer's choice. But it certainly makes for a good song. Here's Neil when he was a younger old guy. Neil has been an old guy since he was a young man. Maybe he's been around the block a couple lives already.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Strange, Satisfying Narrative

The story unfolds...

I'm so glad we don't have to watch any more debates, although, I do think they have been very enlightening. One man seems ready to assume the role of world leader, the other seems to be playing a "demented lunatic."

Probably not a good sign for the old guy if the Undecideds (who are those freaking people anyway?), are laughing at you.

I'm not one of those who believe that everything is pre-determined, I believe we dance with destiny and we can call out the tune as we go, but I also think there are forces at play bigger than us.

Isn't it sort of weird to know that the newly sworn-in President is scheduled to rededicate the Lincoln Memorial on May 30th, 2009? If you were a script-writer, you couldn't plot it anymore perfectly.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Chaos and Old Night? Sounds like Home!

"This was that Earth of which we have heard, made out of Chaos and Old Night." - Henry David Thoreau.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

"A Mean, Rotten Cocksucker." - Matt Taibbi

I think Matt Taibbi is my new journalistic hero. He writes about Karl Rove in the latest Rolling Stone. I haven't actually purchased a Rolling Stone magazine in a long, long time, but I'm thankful for the "internets." I do remember when Rolling Stone was a true countercultural touchstone. I loved those searingly great issues from the early 70's when Hunter S. Thompson and Ralph Steadman graced the pages.

Here's Taibbi on the the current Fox Political Analyst, the "boy genius," also known as "Bush's brain."

"Rove is not a genius, or even very clever: He's totally and completely immoral. It doesn't take genius to claim, as Rove ludicrously did last fall, that it was the Democrats in Congress and not George W. Bush who pushed the Iraq War resolution in 2002. It doesn't take brains to compare a triple-amputee war veteran to Osama bin Laden; you just have to be a mean, rotten cocksucker."

It's so refreshing to read something so plainly, perfectly true. Thanks Matt.

Monday, October 13, 2008

"Don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows." - B. Dylan

No this is not a post about Bill Ayers. The weather man tells us it's to be sunny and 80 degrees today. But there are clouds everywhere you look. Can't trust the priest, can't trust the banker, can't trust the weather man. Seems the list is getting shorter or longer, depending on whether it's the Trust List, or the Can't Trust List.

Note: Dylan tells us to "trust yourself." But this is freaky. Dylan with a dangly earring! If I can't trust Dylan to know how to accessorize appropriately where oh where do I turn?

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Winning Ticket

The last few years, the Lovely Carla and I have had a running conversation about how the world as we know it, has to change if we are all going to be able to live happy, fulfilling lives. We are both eternal optimists and we do buy into the ideal that all of us can "have it." Life is not a business or a contest with winners and losers.

Being born is a winning ticket. Or at least should be.

We do think this "change of consciousness" is coming. The bubbles are bursting before our eyes. Not sure how it will play out. It may be painful. It may be fun. Probably a wild ride. But it will be essential, primal, and most likely beautiful (Wow, the coffee is good this morning!).

Those people open to change will find it much easier to handle than those clinging to the old pictures. Some of us will probably spontaneously combust, heads will explode. There will be ugliness. No doubt.

We have seen this change emerge first in the fringe communities, like in the creative community, the writers, artists, poets, singers-songwriters. They are kind of like the canaries in a coal mine. Then there are spiritual leaders and political leaders who are emerging, pointing us in a new direction, (see the Dali Lama and Al Gore and of course Barack Obama for prime examples).

I think this global economic meltdown is just a manifestation of this shift of consciousness. It's ironic that the keepers of the Temple of Doom, may hasten the new era. Not by design, but by the inevitable running out of the string of a false picture of the world. Unlimited economic growth, just like any unlimited growth in nature is a CANCER!

The new paradigm will emphasize living within one's means, living in harmony, living with less. Unplugging from the grid. Living with love for the planet. Renewable, sustainable, and with maximum grace. This utopia will not be imposed upon us, it will emerge from us.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Death by Derivative - Party like it's 1999!


Maybe we should have been spending less time worrying about that dude with a beard and turban sitting in a cave somewhere in Pakistan, planning the fall of Western Civilization, and more time worrying about that Ayn Rand Acolyte on Wall Street with the glasses, the shiny shoes and the three-piece suit, promoting unregulated derivatives.

Death by Derivative?
What you don't see can kill you!

I think I finally get "trickle down economics." The Big Time Money Boyz get drunk on "abstract instruments" like Credit Default Swaps (Question: Just how many credit default swaps can dance on the head of a pin?), they fill their fat, greedy bladders, and then well, they end up trickling down on the rest of us.

Will the history books tell us that Alan Greenspan was the real Enemy Number One?

Wow, carnage on the street. And really maybe it's not so much a panic, more like people just woke up and realized the Emperor was stark raving naked! And of course, there must be a reckoning.

What's the song from the Brazilian Girls? "We just want to have a good time. All the time. Some people have nothing and want nothing and are free."

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Floats Like a Butterfly, Stings Like a Bee

Hey, in my book, the young whipper-snapper ran rings around the crotchety old dude once again.

And he did it with style and grace.

Is it possible such a completely screwed up country, going down the tubes at an accelerating rate, could actually do the right thing?

To be continued...

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

The Real American Idol

MONEY!

So is it the death of Wall Street?

The man who gave us Platoon, The Doors and Scarface tells us: "Money was worshiped and continues to be worshiped, maybe that will change now." - Oliver Stone

Maybe, maybe not. I wouldn't count on it, unless the money no longer holds the value of the ink printed on it.

Although I admire Mr. Stone and I did appear in one of his films (I was an extra on Natural Born Killers - I played a dead guy!), I recall he did make Alexander a stinker of epic proportions and he actually cast Angelina Jolie as Colin Farrell's mom. Poor Colin ran around in a little white toga with a really ridiculous blond hairdo.

So Mr. Stone's judgement is not infallible. Still, I think he may be right about the money cult. Maybe, just maybe it has run out the string...

Monday, October 06, 2008

"...And a lot of it is because people will have no choice."



This little profile of Chrissie Hynde in yesterday's New York Times is just the ticket. Chrissie is still the leader of the Pretenders one of the great bands out of Akron Ohio. Chrissie has always been a supreme rock and roller. She was in London during the punk explosion in the 70's hanging out with Sid Vicious and Johnny Rotten.

I saw her on tour with Neil Young a few years ago. She just exudes complete confidence and edgy cool. I was happy to find she's a fellow vegetarian, (TAX MEAT!), and she just just recently opened the first ever vegan restaurant in Akron.

Here she is on the rumblings in America. I agree a "A Change is Gonna Come." It's gonna be a rocky ride, but that's when the fun begins.

Chrissie Hynde: "Believe me I don't feature any false optimism, I'm very realistic about things. But I can sense that change is coming, and a lot of it is because people will have no choice."

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Phoenix-Like

Last night our theater company Black Forest rose from the ashes. It was oh so Phoenix-like. We did the Thorn and the Rose our new performance piece at the Ravenswood Art Walk. Our goal was to present something beautiful, haunting, mysterious - slow, stately, shimmering. It's nice to have a target.

We played to a full house - the audience seemed to hang on every note and word. Rousing applause at the end. Maybe a free show allows an audience to just open the door to new things? It was all so unexpected and gratifying.

I do think our world is too stuffed with facts and prose and plot. We are bombarded with facts which come from every corner and these facts twist and turn and contradict each other. It's all so maddening - probably makes us number and dumber.

Maybe we need more poetry. Maybe we need more stuff that doesn't "make sense?" Someone said to me after the show - "That was so avant garde." Which doesn't really mean anything. And that was music to my ears.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Books


Okay, Melissa, here's my first attempt at the "making a sentence from titles of books hanging about the apartment" game:

The dream life healing back pain, rotten, naked, on the Rez.

I think this is a game that might appeal to militant librarians, former English Majors or anyone with lots of books laying about. Anyone else want to try? Paula? God? Kris?

Friday, October 03, 2008

A Nation of Dead-Enders? Balderdash!

Watched the Veep debate. I was looking forward to a complete train wreck. Kind of disappointed. But seems to me defending the Iraq war, modeling the VP job on Dick Cheney's shining example, and promising that every problem we have will be solved with more tax cuts is complete balderdash. I don't want to get over-confident but seems to me that the McCain/Palin freak-show is toast.

The Republican Party lies to us. Over and over. And I guess a lot of Americans want to believe the lies. The lies are just as death-dealing when they come from the lips of a well-prepped hockey mom. The final factor heading towards November is how many people will close their eyes and pretend that the lies are not lies.

Denial is an aphrodisiac. The Republican party has led a powerful political movement (get government out of the business of helping people and let the rich people party out of bounds!), that has carried us since the Reagan Revolution. It's a rear-guard movement based on the myth of who we want to pretend to be.

I do think Bush/Cheney have run out the string. The only true believers left are the type of people who cry when the dictator dies. I just hope those dead-enders don't out-number the rest of us.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Too Much Too Soon

Global System Shocks...

John Robb is one of the few people talking about the fundamental flaws of our interconnected global system. Robb tells us it's sort of like the New York Dolls second album.

Death by algorithm. An algorithm sitting on a computer somewhere in New York can instantly trigger a meltdown in Moscow and London. And then the human beings who designed the system scratch their over-loaded noggins and dither in the houses of debate.

We were worried about the avian flu, we were worried about a wayward meteor, we were worried about a planet without ice, and now we've been mugged by the SHADOW BANKING SYSTEM! Beware the Shadow Banker!

Too Big. Too Fast. Too Complex.

Our success is killing us. It's an old story. Happened to the Dolls first...

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Fun Bucks!


One wonders if this reality has any reality behind it. Is it all just funny money?

And what is money anyway? To J.S.G. Boggs it's more than just a lark...

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