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Thinking Through and Beyond the Election by Peter Dreier
11:28 am

Current Events

Peter Dreier

Of all the attempts to analyze the post-election “now what?” question, by far, the clearest-headed effort has come from Peter Dreier, a professor of politics at Occidental College in Los Angeles. He composed his thoughts in an email that he sent to friends, family and colleagues, and now this email is going viral. Here’s an excerpt:

Amazingly, as Harold Meyerson notes in today’s Washington Post, Americans who blamed Wall Street for the nation’s economic problems favored Republicans over Democrats by a 14% margin!! It is time to reframe the debate over which party is in Wall Street’s pocket!

In his column Tuesday, Robert Reich reminds us that during FDR’s first term, almost every major business organization and leader, as well as almost every daily newspaper in America, attacked his New Deal ideas — such as Social Security and the National Labor Relations Act — as unwarranted “big government” and even “socialism.” During his re-election campaign in 1936, FDR mobilized public opinion against his political enemies. “Never before have these forces been so united against one candidate as they stand today,” he thundered. “They are unanimous in their hate for me — and I welcome their hatred.” FDR won re-election in a landslide. Reich suggests that Obama and progressives should follow FDR’s example.

Obama’s biggest victory (which the Republicans now hope to repeal) was the passage of the historic health care reform. As I wrote last May in the American Prospect, that victory happened because progressive groups — unions, consumer groups, community organizing groups, and others — mounted a grassroots protest campaign that saved the health care bill from defeat. The activists focused public attention on the influence and greed of the insurance industry, and gave wavering Democrats, including the President, the support they needed to push for a reform bill. Progressives and liberals need to sustain an permanent protest campaign focusing on the outrageous greed, irresponsible practices, and political influence-peddling of big business. It would help if the President and the Democratic leaders were partners in this “inside/outside” strategy.

In an op-ed in yesterday’s Los Angeles Times, Marshall Ganz, who helped design Obama’s grassroots organizing effort in 2008, argues that Obama needs to find his voice as an inspiring “transformational” leader, and, in doing so, help unleash the potential power of his 2008 supporters.

We need to constantly reframe the public debate to remind Americans that the Republicans, like Cong. John Boehner (the likely next Speaker of the House) and Sen. Mitchell McConnell, are wholly-owned subsidies of corporate America. That’s where they get their money. That’s their agenda. In case you’ve forgotten already, here it is again.

Boehner, McConnell, and their corporate sponsors have already declared war on Obama, the Democrats, and any attempt to tame corporate abuses, or reduce income inequality and poverty. McConnell today repeated that his top priority in Congress is to make Obama a one-term President. As Ganz, Reich, and others have written, this is no time for Obama and the Democrats to compromise principles for the sake of an illusionary bi-partisan consensus. Boehner, McConnell, DeMint and the other Republican leaders have absolutely no interest in bipartisan compromises.

Read more: Thinking Through and Beyond the Election

Thanks for the heads up, James McCardle!

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Billy Carter’s ‘Billy Beer’
11:02 am


Billy Beer
Jimmy Carter
Billy Carter

Billy Carter was Jimmy Carter’s embarrassing redneck, alcoholic baby brother. An annoying presence in the 1970s with his frequent TV appearances (on shows like Hee-Haw and Merv Griffin’s talkshow) Billy’s trademark drunken antics—like taking a piss in front of news reporters—served as a constant and frightening reminder that we’d elected a president sharing the same DNA with this hillbilly idiot.

Until the 1979 “Billygate” influence-peddling scandal where Carter was given a loan of $220,000 dollars by the Libyan government, familial relations aside, his biggest claim to fame was “Billy Beer,” a dank, syrupy, shitty, moldy-tasting brew named after him, which he claimed not even to drink himself (Carter drank Pabst Blue Ribbon). At one point, idiotic beer can collectors were said to be willing to pay hundreds of dollars for a can of the mythic “Billy Brew” until the seemingly never-ending supply of said beer cans—after all they made millions upon millions of these things—eventually burst this rather dubious speculative bubble!

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Man arrested at Burger King for collecting urine
08:53 am


Alan Patton

There is something very, very wrong with infamous urine collector, Alan Patton. Très disturbing.

Man With Urine Fetish Could Be Punished Under Law He Inspired

(via Arbroath)

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
Dangerous Minds Radio Hour episode 8
08:05 am


Dangerous Minds Radio Hour
Brad Laner

Due to a busy schedule and various life interventions, this week’s episode of Dangerous Minds Radio Hour is a pair of half hour mixes which I made and posted here earlier this year. They’re new to our large new podcasting audience though, so here ya go !
To Blast Away The Fungus In Your Ears:

Runzelstirn and Gurgelstock- Bei Abwesenheit….
Wolfgang Dauner/ Etcetera - Lady Blue
I.D. Company - Bum Bum
Pedro Santos - Sem Sombra
Chrome - TV As Eyes
Fleetwood Mac - Albatross
Jon Anderson - Transic Tö
Angel Rada - Upsadesa
Yoko Ono/Plastic Ono Band - Paper Shoes
Taj Mahal Travelllers - July 15,1972 part 3
Matching Mole (w/ Robert Wyatt & Brian Eno) - Gloria Gloom
Brian Eno (w/ Brad Laner) - Faraway Suns (unreleased)
Man Can Now Be Boxed And Bunched (all 7” singles):

Portsmouth Sinfonia - Also Sprach Zarathustra Op. 31 (excerpt)

Annie Anxiety - Cyanide Tears

Jimmy Smack - Untitled
Keith Rowe - Scratch Music
Joe Colley/Crawl Unit - Clay Sound

Princess Tinymeat - A Bun in the Oven

Eazy Teeth - Her Blade

The Flying Lizards - All Guitars
Minimal Man - She Was A Visitor
Stefan Weisser (Zev) - Poextensions
Sun City Girls - Eye Mohini
Project 197 - Plastic Straws

Jimmy Smack - Untitled

Caroliner - The Cooking Stove Beast
Johnny Ace - Pledging My Love

Download this week’s episode
Subscribe to the Dangerous Minds Radio Hour podcast at Alterati


Posted by Brad Laner | Leave a comment
John Lennon, Van Halen and Crackerjack

There is something about mash-ups that reminds me of the classic British children’s TV series Crackerjack, which ruled the winter airwaves from 1955-1984.

Crackerjack was broadcast live every Friday, from BBC TV Centre in London, and was a frenetic mix of sketches, games, quizzes and mini dramas (rather like pantomime), with each show opening with the lines, “It’s Friday. It’s five o’clock. And it’s Crackerjack!”  Christ knows what drugs inspired the genesis of this series, but its effect on viewers, its studio full of hyper-active kids, and the state of British TV since has been immense.

One of the highlights of Crackerjack was its mini-drama or featurette, where chart songs were re-interpreted by the show’s stars Peter Glaze, Ed Stewart, Jan Hunt, Leslie Crowther, The Krankies, Don Maclean and co. What usually happened was the tune of one hit had its lyrics changed to fit in with the drama’s narrative, one regular choice for this was Queen’s ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’.

Mighty Mike’s mash-up of Van Halen’s ‘Jump’ with John Lennon’s ‘Imagine’ made me think of Crackerjack, as the mix of preposterous rock vocal with, what comedian Iain Lee once described as “a nursery song for hippies,” would have sat easily within Crackerjack‘s format. Mighty Mike has been making these kinds of mash-ups for a wee while, and his site has a varied selection including Michael Jackson and Queen, Free and Madonna, Alanis Morisette and B.O.B.. Now, if only the BBC would bring back Crackerjack...but then again, perhaps not.

Bonus Mighty Mike mash-up and clip of ‘Crackerjack’ after the jump…
With thanks to Alistair Mcmenemy

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
The Descendents tear it up in Austin at Fun Fun Fun Fest, November 7, 2010
12:22 am


Fun Fun Fest

The Descendents in 1978
Here’s some video I shot tonight of the Descendents performing at Fun Fun Fun Fest in Austin. Founding members vocalist Milo Aukerman and drummer Bill Stevenson have been doing this off and on since 1978 - 33 fucking years ago!  Bassist Karl Alvarez and guitarist Stephen Egerton joined the Descendents in the mid-80’s. Original member Frank Navetta died in 2008. Stevenson joined Black Flag in 1982 when the Descendents dis-banded for a few years. He and Milo re-grouped in 1985.

Tonight’s show was high energy and timeless. Punk lives!

Karl Alvarez, bass | Milo Aukerman, vocals | Bill Stevenson, drums | Stephen Egerton, guitar

‘Myage’ 1986:


Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
Susan Boyle sings Lou Reed’s ‘Perfect Day’: The official video
10:10 pm

Pop Culture

Lou Reed
Perfect Day
Susan Boyle

Ms. Boyle has very good taste in music. One of my favorite Lou Reed songs nicely done. A strange combination that works. Whoever is handling Susan’s career is making some smart moves. What’s next? ‘Morning Morning’ by The Fugs?

According to news reports, Reed participated in some capacity in the creation of this video. The reports are conflicting, some saying he directed it, others that he merely suggested the concept of the video. My feeling is that he had nothing to do with this other than having written the song and giving Boyle his blessing. Who knows?
Update: Video was removed due to a copyright claim by Sony Music Entertainment. Here’s another version below.
Update: According to Spinner, Lou Reed DID direct the video.

The saga of Lou Reed and Susan Boyle took another surprise turn on Sunday when the pair premiered a video for Boyle’s cover of Reed’s ‘Perfect Day’ on PopEater. Reed made headlines in September when he allegedly wouldn’t let Boyle cover his 1972 classic on ‘America’s Got Talent,’ causing the Scottish singer to cancel her appearance on the show. In reality, the ban on the cover was simply due to a publishing rights mistake, and Reed had no problem with the cover. Once that was cleared up, Reed asked to direct the video for Boyle’s orchestra-laden version of the song, which is on her new album ‘The Gift.’
“I wanted to create a beautiful and intimate piece shot in Susan’s native Scotland and she quickly agreed,” Reed told the UK’s Sunday Mail.

Boyle added, “I loved that Lou understood how much it meant to me to film in Scotland. I didn’t mind how much it rained or blew a gale—I enjoyed every minute.”


Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
Steve Coogan vs. Rob Brydon: This is How Michael Caine Speaks

From BBC2’s comedy The Trip.

Thanks Gord Fynes!

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
Jim Morrison’s Film Debut

Before attending UCLA to study film, The Doors’ lead singer Jim Morrison was a student at Florida State University, where he studied art and psychology. It was during his stint at FSU that Morrison appeared in a promotional film, called Florida State University - Towards a Greater University. Even in this little clip, the teenage Morrison exudes the sullen charisma that would later make him a star.

A fellow student, Gerry McLain recalls the young Lizard King:

AL: How did you meet Jim Morrison?

GM: I was a film student at FSU. At that time, the department consisted of two people: myself and Werner Vagt who ran the operation. There were no formal classes. Werner made short films for the university and some outside clients. He had been a director in Germany. Jim Morrison appeared in a short we did for United Way. As I recall, he walked to a mailbox and mailed a letter.


With thanks to Maria Guimil

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Subversively move George W. Bush’s memoir to crime section in book shops this Tuesday

Here is a worthy symbolic prank for those us lucky enough to still have proximity to actual bricks and mortar bookstores. Do it !

Be part of a literary movement. Literally.
They did this to Tony Blair’s book and I think we should do the same here.

Subversively move George W. Bush’s memoir “Decision Points” to the crime section in book shops
It is going to be released

Make bookshops think twice about where they categorize our generation’s greatest war criminals.


Please invite your friends to do it too!
Even humorous protests make a difference!

Subversively move George W. Bush’s memoir to crime section in book shops (facebook group)

Posted by Brad Laner | Leave a comment
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