Saturday, October 30, 2004

tech note

we were having some technical problems for awhile (the site was even "forbidden" briefly this morning) but pan has moved us to a better server now so things should go smoothly for awhile now.

Friday, October 29, 2004

halloween monster mania

i've been busting my ass this week working on halloween material for my shows this weekend. here is an 8-minute epic collage for your enjoyment. don't download this if you live in the naptown area... instead, you should come to one of my shows so you can hear it premiered live. of course, if you are local, i can't really stop you from clicking the link...

i've tried to post this to snuggles twice already but apparently srn mail is not working this morning. hopefully it'll come back online soon.


check out the flier for the next bad taste show on november 6!

Thursday, October 28, 2004

the bird is the word

click the pic to go to a site where you can watch the full video.

intake article

my intake artist profile is online here. i'm not crazy about the picture, but what a lead:

Technically, most of the music stAllio! makes is illegal.

Monday, October 25, 2004

halloween: the phantom menace

as is typical for a monday morning, i awoke before my alarm went off & laid there hoping i'd get back to sleep but knowing it wouldn't be for long if so. but once i'd had my shower, it started to look like a good day. first i received a paypal from praxis paying me for the 25 copies of true data i sent them. boo-ya!

then when i got to the office, i discovered i'd been hit by the phantom.

this is an office version of what's apparently an old tradition. in this secret santa style scenario, the phantom ghost haunts you by anonymously giving you candy & treats. along with the candy is typically some sort of poem or chain letter (see link above), as well as a "ghost sign" to be posted on your door so everyone will know the phantom has hit you. then it's your duty to become the new phantom ghost, and hit 2-3 innocent victims of your own. (i went out to target at lunch to be sure i had the requisite candy & goody baskets.)

the phantom is a tradition here in our office. i think it's been around every year i've been here (though maybe not the first couple). this was the first year i've been hit by the phantom, presumably because i have no friends. i've started to wonder whether the phantom chose me by default: looking around, there don't seem to be many cubes that the phantom hasn't hit yet. maybe they didn't know where else to go. then again, my candy was delivered in a purple goody basket (with a cute li'l vampire & the slogan "i want some candy"), so either the phantom knew my taste well enough to know my favorite color (not too hard considering my wardrobe), or it was all pure luck.

i've looked online for the specific graphic we use for our phantom signs, but can't find it. there seem to be many variations on the ghost signs & poems the phantom leaves.

so it was a good morning for me. but not such a good morning for bush, because the story of the 380 tons of explosives broke free today & is probably the top story in the news now:

The Iraqi interim government has warned the United States and international nuclear inspectors that nearly 380 tons of powerful conventional explosives - used to demolish buildings, make missile warheads and detonate nuclear weapons - are missing from one of Iraq's most sensitive former military installations.

The huge facility, called Al Qaqaa, was supposed to be under American military control but is now a no man's land, still picked over by looters as recently as Sunday. United Nations weapons inspectors had monitored the explosives for many years, but White House and Pentagon officials acknowledge that the explosives vanished sometime after the American-led invasion last year.

380 tons of plastic explosive is one hell of a lot of blow-up-sauce, especially as powerful as this stuff is. most likely, these looted explosives are what the iraqi resistance is using in its assaults on us occupation forces. so if we'd been guarding this stuff in the first place, they wouldn't be using it now to kill american soldiers.

white house falsehood factory has tried to pass off the blame on the iraqi interim govt, despite the fact that this stuff was most likely stolen months & months before the us "power handover".

if that's not bad enough, what about further proof of geneva convention violations by the cia? or yet another investigation into improprieties at halliburton?

none of these stories are good for bush, assuming the corporate media does its job & keeps reporting them. on the other hand, today's revelation that chief justice rehnquist has cancer could energize voters on both sides who are worried about whether bush will get to appoint far-right ideologues to the supreme court next term.

Friday, October 22, 2004

bayh the people

the other day i gave my sister a ride home from work & we were talking about elections. i was a bit surprised when she mentioned that our senator, evan bayh, is up for re-election. i had totally forgotten. admittedly i haven't watched local tv in months, but i had heard nothing recently about the bayh/scott race, no ads, no mentions on the politiblogs, nothing. today i finally saw a yard sign for marvin scott (the republican challenger); i can't recall ever seeing bayh yard signs. & now that i think about it, i do remember hearing some discussion of bayh/scott debates on inside indiana business on npr some time ago, but obviously nothing recently (apparently because there will be no debate).

so today i googled bayh & quickly found this article on that explains why nobody's talking about this race:

A statewide poll showed Bayh had a 39 percentage point lead with less than a month remaining before the election.

damn, 39 points? hoosiers sure do love them some evan bayh. we gave him two terms as governor & will handily re-elect him to the senate. indiana politics are strange like that: we've had a democrat governor for 16 years now, then sent one of them to the senate, but we're still "solid red" for bush. i still dream of a kerry coup in indiana, but bush is polling consistently in the 50s here. and it's possible we'll lose our democrat governor: the media is reporting their race as a head heat. the only poll numbers i can find are 46 daniels, 43 kernan, which does not bode well considering the incumbent rule. but assuming the massive democrat advantage in new voter registration also applies here, that could be enough to carry kernan to victory. plus that poll is already at least a week old.

more on why kerry is winning

today i've been reading mydd. i don't read it as often as dkos, atrios, or tpm because it gets pretty technical & wonkish. but that wonkishness makes it a fantastic place to go for detailed poll analysis, like this post explaining how undecideds historically break overwhelmingly for the challenger. chris bowers calls this the "incumbent rule" but you might see it referred to as the 50% rule or the 48% rule (i mentioned this briefly in my last "kerry wins" post).

it goes like this: any election with an incumbent is fundamentally a referendum on the incumbent. the electorate is intimately familiar with the incumbent, having lived with him for a full term by now. their decision is whether they like him enough to re-elect. if they don't, & the other guy isn't a total doofus, the challenger wins.

in this context, an "undecided" voter already has misgivings about the incumbent & needs to be convinced that the incumbent deserves their vote. if they aren't convinced when they get to the ballot box, they won't vote for the incumbent. historically, most undecideds aren't convinced come election day.

so the incumbent rule says that the real measure of who's winning is whether the incumbent has around 50% of the vote or more. if a race is bush 51, kerry 45, then (assuming the poll is even accurate, a big if these days) bush wins that state. but if the poll is bush 47, kerry 45, that really means the election would be more like kerry 52, bush 47, because the undecideds will mostly vote kerry. some adjust the magic number to 48%, saying that's the minimum the incumbent needs to even have a chance of winning.

this isn't bs: the mydd post has bunches of empirical evidence dating back decades, as well as links to other in-depth discussions of the incumbent rule and quotes from professional pollsters.

unless bush does something serious soon to turn his numbers around, he's toast.

out of touch with reality

a new study shows that large majorities of bush supporters believe things that are provably false.

Even after the final report of Charles Duelfer to Congress saying that Iraq did not have a significant WMD program, 72% of Bush supporters continue to believe that Iraq had actual WMD (47%) or a major program for developing them (25%). Fifty-six percent assume that most experts believe Iraq had actual WMD and 57% also assume, incorrectly, that Duelfer concluded Iraq had at least a major WMD program. Kerry supporters hold opposite beliefs on all these points.

Similarly, 75% of Bush supporters continue to believe that Iraq was providing substantial support to al Qaeda, and 63% believe that clear evidence of this support has been found. Sixty percent of Bush supporters assume that this is also the conclusion of most experts, and 55% assume, incorrectly, that this was the conclusion of the 9/11 Commission. Here again, large majorities of Kerry supporters have exactly opposite perceptions.

one thing both bush and kerry supporters agree on is that bushco says these things are true. where they disagree is that kerry supporters know all this to be false. so why do bush supporters believe the lies?

"To support the president and to accept that he took the US to war based on mistaken assumptions likely creates substantial cognitive dissonance, and leads Bush supporters to suppress awareness of unsettling information about prewar Iraq."

bush supporters also have no clue how unpopular bush & his policies are wordlwide, & even think bush is in favor of various treaties and the international criminal court! to give all the highlights i'd have to repost the whole thing.

Thursday, October 21, 2004

click the link to press the button

i would've posted this monday if i'd thought of it:

if you're interested in last week's episode of press the button, with guests stAllio!, tfy, jack smiley, ryan from thursday club, & more, the quickest way to hear it (in fact the only sure way) is to download the 56k archive mp3 from hopefully every man will post a higher-quality version, but i don't count on him doing that right away if he gets around to it at all (frankly, he has many hours of rr recordings to sift through & possibly encode).

if you want to download this file, it's important to do so this week because the archive will be replaced after the next episode of ptb sunday night. so do it now!

[update: tfy points out in the comments that 160kbps stereo mp3s of the show are now available. it sounds better in stereo.]

prediction: kerry will devour bush

maybe i've drunk the kool-aid & am not being as cynical as usual, but i do believe (as i have for awhile) that more likely than not, kerry will win the election. & i'm not sure it'll even be close.

forget about the national polls. even if there weren't countless signs of problems with them, the fact is that national polls don't mean shit. if they did, gore would be in office now. besides, the media isn't reporting them right anyway (even a 1-point lead for bush is reported as a lead, but when kerry has a lead it's reported as a "dead heat").

what actually matters is the electoral college, where kerry is kicking ass. indeed, in all the ways that actually matter, kerry is ahead or at least gaining ground.

kerry won all three debates. kerry is up or leading in all the swing states. newspapers that endorsed bush in 2000 & even big-name republicans are endorsing kerry. new democrat voter registrations far outnumber republican registrations.

bush, in contrast, is stuck at or below the 48% barrier in countless polls, which is almost certain doom for an incumbent. the bush campaign has nothing to go on but non-stories like kerry mentioning that mary cheney is a lesbian in the third debate (hello, this was already public knowledge. the republican "outrage" over this merely suggests that they are still uncomfortable with homosexuality in general) or that theresa kerry didn't know that laura bush used to be a schoolteacher (who cares is laura bush ever had a "real job"? hell, she doesn't have one now: she's the first lady, which means her job is to smile, stand by the prez [yes, hillary-haters, even if he cheats on you], & act feminine). bush has a rabidly devoted base but the majority of americans don't like or trust him, so the bush agenda has been to make people dislike kerry too. that was working for awhile, but it's not anymore.

so i'm convinced. barring disaster, kerry will win. i don't think nader will even be a factor this year: if any third-party candidate has a significant impact on the election it will be badnarik (libertarian). the left is almost completely united under kerry, but i know a few conservatives who are voting libertarian because they hate bush but can't bring themselves to vote for a democrat. but for some reason no pollsters ever include badnarik, yet they often include nader (who is only on the ballot in like 20 states, whereas i believe badnarik will be there in all 50).

so for me right now the real question is not will kerry win, but by how much? the conventional wisdom is that the race will be very close, like 2000. but i'm not convinced. because of factors such as the overwhelming advantage the democrats have in new registrations, i suspect that kerry will win by a much larger margin than the polls actually suggest. maybe it won't be a landslide, but i have a feeling it might be a fairly decisive victory. what i would love is for some of the "solid red" states to flip for kerry: specifically indiana. maybe that's a pipe dream, but a man can dream, right? i would cream my jeans if it happened.

naturally bushco will try everything possible to hold on to power, including voter disenfranchisement, legal battles, the whole shebang. but if i'm right that kerry will have a decisive win, the bushco effort to cockblock the vote will not be enough. it won't matter. even after they turn people away at the polls & try to discredit democratic ballots, kerry will still have enough to win.

obviously i'm rooting for kerry here, & i've joined operation momentum to get out the word that not only can kerry win, but he will if kerry-supporters & bush-haters stay motivated & actually vote. you might think i'm deluding myself. if i turn out to be wrong, you have every right to rub it in my face (if you have the stomach; i can't imagine anyone who'd read this blog actually being glad if bush wins). but the fact is that things are looking great for kerry, & bush is going to need a minor miracle at this point to turn the momentum around.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

when in hell, do as the zombies do

last night drbmd & i finally made it out to see shaun of the dead. i wasn't blown away or anything, but it was thoroughly enjoyable. before the movie we had drinks & partook of the complimentary happy-hour taco bar at don pablo's. nummy.

i just received my personal copies of the brand new compilation from tokyo-based lost frog: hell. this is a great comp with new unreleased tracks by animals within animals, panicsville, five starcle men, kingdom scum, and many more. see for more info, and how to order. i've been listening to secret sneak-preview mp3s for awhile now so trust me when i say the cd sounds good... now that i have a physical copy, i can assure you it looks good too!

lost frog has also posted a new, corrected version of the cover art pdf for the animals within animals mp3ep get me some press or kill these people. so if you've already downloaded that release, go get the updated cover art. & if you haven't downloaded the release, what are you waiting for? it's free, dammit! frizzee!

Monday, October 18, 2004


so i took 3 days off to travel up to lakewood/cleveland for recycled rainbow 9. i left thursday and got back a few hours ago. alas, i took no photos nor video on this vacation.

i got into lakewood around 7 local time. connie had already arrived at the hotel by that time. mostly we relaxed for the evening, though we took a brief drive to get dinner and ended up getting stromboli from some place on detroit called the pizza pan.

friday afternoon we took a scenic drive through downtown cleveland on our way to empirial sound to hopefully get my cd players repaired. drive 1 of my decks had been giving me problems for months, to the point that drive 1 was totally unusable. empsound is the closest authorized numark service center i've found, & i didn't want to mess with shipping my decks to numark and waiting for them to come back. the place itself is overflowing with gear; amps and assorted electronics are piled everywhere, to the point that it's tough to walk around in the place. but i talked to walt (the specialist in such matters) & he agreed to take a look & get them fixed by monday if possible.

on the way home we had a nice vietnamese meal at someplace at around w 56th & detroit. i don't remember the name, but the curry was good.

a couple hours later walt called from empirical sound to tell me that my drive 1 was actually spinning backward! he'd even swapped drives 1 & 2, and the drive in slot 1 still spun counterclockwise. so he told me he would have to replace the control board & quoted me a price of about $300. i wasn't pleased, but i did desperately need the work done, so i gave him the okay to do the work.

we went to the rr house around 8pm, expecting the place to already be bustling, but it turns out we were the first to arrive. others slowly filtered in after us & we worked for a bit. the music in the basement got started very late. johnny la rock "set up" for hours in a fashion that strongly reminded me of WRP: johnny la rock himself behind a control deck a la matt the pm, bantering constantly (& with vocal fx) with mush mouth (who admittedly was not so reminiscent of pimpdaddysupreme). eventually they played their set and it was good: nice beats and interesting composition work (& not totally unlike WRP, either).

by this point it was already quite late, and connie was getting a bit tired & really wanted to try out a cafe we'd found called dianna's. dianna's was just your typical pancake house, packed with people who'd just left the bars. not all that different from the place called "my friends" where we'd been so many times on previous visits.

saturday afternoon, we hooked with tfy at bent crayon to do some record shopping. bent crayon's selection is terrific, but the place is horribly cluttered & disorganized. records are stacked horizontally on top of other shelves of records; in some places the piles are so deep that you couldn't reasonably even go through the whole pile, let alone look at the records trapped in the shelf underneath them. still, everybody found stuff to buy; i personally spent abour $240 there.

connie & i had wanted to grab sushi afterward at sakura, a local japanese joint that isn't up to connie's usual standards but is pretty decent for sushi in the midwest. but we had sucked up so much time shopping at bent crayon that we wouldn't have time left to finish our costumes before going to rr. so instead we went to schlotsky's on the condition that we would have time to eat at sakura the following day. we grabbed our sandwiches to go & spent some time in the hotel room with our needles & thread putting our costumes together.

the theme was classic literature & we had the idea to do a "couple costume" where our costumes complemented each other to form one greater theme. we decided to do the sound & the fury so i dressed as "the sound" (as in puget sound) in bluish aquatic-looking clothes with foliage around me: i had to sew some big fake leaves and cat-tails to my shorts, which was awkward & uncomfortable (not to mention very cold, since the weather was unusually chilly this week). connie dressed up as a "fury", one of the kindly ones of greek mythology who would haunt those who spilled the blood of their kin. she had a slowing dress, snakes in her hair, and wings (the wings were awkward & uncomfortable in much the same way as my foliage).

we arrived right at 7, when i was supposed to go on, but already the event was more than an hour behind schedule & the record exchange (thursday club in dj form) was still setting up. this is pretty much noise djing: thick and loud, with very little recognizable.

i played next (using every man's gear, since mine was obviously still in the shop), mixing random noises & beats with some codename kids next door, some presidential debate stuff, a bit of psalty, & other random stuff. i didn't think it was among my best performances, but if/when i hear the recording i might decide i love it.

tfy was supposed to go on next but wasn't quite ready, so instead up next was a performance by tropic (formerly known as nagoya math journal) in the garage. first they did a performance piece about the tower of babel, repeatedly retelling the story while the language they used progressively deteriorated into slang, then incoherence. next up was the story of abraham preparing to sacrifice his son isaac's life at the lord's request: abraham spent several minutes elaborately binding isaac while isaac asked dejected questions about why life seemed to be heading in the wrong direction. it was good but i was cold.

then tfy did it in the basement with the laptop, kaoss pad, and the thrift store turntables. it was a noisy yet subtle performance of dsp delay effects and literature records. one of the performance requirements for rr9 was that all performances should deal with the event's theme at least briefly: i rather doubt everyone followed this rule but tfy went above & beyond.

things didn't quite progress in the order currently listed on the site, so forgive me if i misremember the sequence of events here... did the volta sound play next? if they didn't, let's pretend they did. the volta sound is some kind of psychedelic rock band. friends & loyal readers will know i can be a tremendous snob regarding rock music, & the volta sound is not the kind of band i go to rr events to see, so connie & i decided to make an important run to the car around this time (because of weather conditions and our somewhat skimpy cotumes, walking those 15 houses to my car was a bit of a chore).

up next, i guess, was the electric grandmother. remember that old tv movie the electric grandmother about an adroid grandmother? (apparently the movie was based on "i sing the body electric" by ray bradbury.) what kind of act would name itself after that movie? an act that's obsessed with '80s tv, obviously. the electric grandmother (the performer) sings silly songs, most of which are about '80s sitcoms, over beats that are one step above wesley willis. there's also a slideshow, so when the electric grandmother is singing about how kirk cameron sucked after he went hardcore christian, sure enough, there is a big cheesy photo of kirk cameron on the screen next to him. fun stuff, & a nice change of pace that i'm quite glad i got to see, but after awhile the schtick starts to lose its oomph. it would work better if the set were shorter.

i guess this was when we did "a little deaf", a ritual where we go outside & toss around glowing stuff in complete silence for 4 minutes and 33 seconds. these rituals seem to grow harder to control... it took several minutes for everyone to get outside & quiet down, & it was pretty cold out by this point. then the ritual started & i immediately got hit in the face by a glowing ring; it knocked me in my glasses & for a minute or two i was convinced it had knocked them onto the ground as i searched around frantically to find them. eventually i realized they were still on my face. regardless, i for one think the little deaf ritual has jumped the shark. it's past its prime, so let's come up with something new next time.

then came leia alligator's puppet show. she told the familiar fables of the three wolves & how the elephant got its nose, leia style. this is the second of her puppet shows i've seen and both times i felt a bit sorry for her because the crowd was unbelievably rowdy boths times. some audience participation is expected, and i appreciate friendly heckling as much as anybody, but when the show can't go on because it seems like half the crowd is heckling, something has gone wrong. still, leia put on an admirable & enjoyable performance for the circumstances. and much of the heckling, as rude as it may have been, was pretty funny.

we were at least 3 hours behind by now, as the black fives performed in the basement. quahogs played with a baby monitor, reading literature and generating feedback, while gabe busted out the beats: nice hard sophisticated beats, just the way i like 'em. very good. we ran out to the car after their set so i could trade gabe a copy of true data for a couple copies of the black fives/fudgie & fufu split 7".

when we returned, the damn weiner kids had started playing. the damn weiner kids consist of leia alligator, dirt goddess, and i guess hetmana (she at least participated at times). first they rocked out tearing a bunch of paper in front of microphones, creating a thick stew of tearing sounds & shakers. then they went into a technopop hip hop number, then a more ambient piece with ocean sounds, flute, and poetry... very enjoyable. but by now it was 4am & connie was passing out, so we went back to the hotel & missed the remaining acts for the evening.

sunday we slept late, then went for a relaxing sushi meal at sakura. not perfect, but fun. since connie lives in san francisco she's surrounded by some of the best, freshest sushi in the country, but for me, living in the midwest with only a few sushi-eating friends, it's still a treat. then back to the hotel to pack a bit & watch some more tv until it was time to meet up again at the rr house & caravan to the wruw studio for the press the button radio show.

we ended up following ryan from thursday club to the studio; ryan takes a far simpler path than every man, but his turn signals are messed up so he was occasionally hard to follow. i can now make it 99% of the way to the studio without assistance.

i still didn't have my cd players back, so for the radio show i just plugged in my kp2 and plugged in some headphones to use as a microphone (i also hooked in a portable cd player, but i didn't even use it). the first half hour of the show was chaos, everyone fighting to be heard, so we then started performing in 3-person shifts of 15 minutes apiece. i thought it turned out well. i had some good moments on the mic, including a series of pitch-shifted "boom selecta" ad libs that seemed to be crowd pleasers.

wruw had probably a dozen crates of records they were getting rid of, so i went to town & grabbed a ridiculously thick pile of crap. i don't expect to really enjoy many of the records i got, but they were free and might be useful, so hell, i stocked up.

after the show, connie & i went to the gold coast cafe, yet another nondescript pancake house within a few blocks of w 117 & detroit.

only a few hours sleep before we had to get up so i could take connie to the airport. we said our tortured goodbyes & i was off to empirical sound to pick up my cd players. it rained my entire drive home, so that sucked, but mercifully it didn't start until i had left empirical sound & stopped by the time i got home.

so good times, good music, tender moments with my girlfriend... & i got much-needed, if pricey, repairs to my performance rig. the full stAllio! live rig will be in full effect this halloween baby!

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

debate and switch

damn, on the very first question bush was blinking like a LED, and told a blatant lie during his 30sec extension.

kerry brought up this quote and bush denied it (thanks to dailykos users for locating it so quickly)

Well, as I say, we haven't heard much from him. And I wouldn't necessarily say he's at the center of any command structure. And, again, I don't know where he is. I -- I'll repeat what I said. I truly am not that concerned about him. I know he is on the run. I was concerned about him, when he had taken over a country. I was concerned about the fact that he was basically running Afghanistan and calling the shots for the Taliban.

bush is smirking again... if he were wired, i would think his handler would tell him to stop! he looks smarmy.

maybe he isn't smirking so much as the left side of his mouth is numb or swollen and he can't permanently turned downward...

my sister wanted to know what kind of a question is "is homosexuality a choice?" seriously.

the moderator asked bush straight out whether he would overturn roe v wade. bush didn't even answer the question; he just said he wouldn't have a "litmus test" for his judges. he used about 15 seconds of his 2 minutes. come on, george. he also tries to equate jobs with education. in response to the mininum wage question, he said we need high educational standards. how will that increase the number of higher paying jobs, or make it easier to get by on minimum wage jobs? we'll only end up with a bunch of college-education burger flippers and janitors...

what the hell is wrong with the left side of bush's mouth?

blink blink blink blink blink blink blink it's like bush is making goo-goo eyes at someone (kerry?).

o'reilly sex scandal

fox pundit and "shut up" king bill o'reilly is being sued for sexually harrassing one of his producers. o'reilly already filed a preemptive countersuit.

Based on the extensive quotations cited in the complaint, it appears a safe bet that Mackris, 33, recorded some of O'Reilly's more steamy soliloquies.

this thing is juicy. it's worth reading just to see o'reilly quoted using the words "falafel" and "pussy" used in the same sentence (see p.16).

tonight are the debates and i might get a quick post in about them, but tomorrow i leave for an extended weekend at recycled rainbow so i don't have much posting time left...

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

media roundup

the rumor that bush has been wearing a "wire" during the debates keeps gaining steam. i'm a bit skeptical, because the potential PR disaster that would ensue if they were caught is so huge that i'm not sure even the bush administration is foolish enough to try it. then again, what are those mysterious bulges in george's suit? if they're not a wire, wtf are they? the bush administration has not given a plausible answer.

sinclair broadcasting, the same media conglomerate that refused to air the episode of nightline where koppel read off a list of the iraq war dead, has mandated that its affiliates air a blatant piece of anti-kerry propaganda (a "film" brought to you by those swift boat liars) on prime time before election day. the swift boat liars have every right to make any kind of bogus movie they like, but for a broadcasting powerhouse to give them an hour's free airtime is outrageous and flagrantly illegal. i had to pay good money to see fahrenheit 9/11; can you imagine the republican outrage if that were going to be broadcast over the airwaves on or before nov 1? josh marshall at talkinpointsmemo is encouraging people to get in touch with sinclair's advertisers and voice their dissatisfaction, arguing (correctly i think) that hitting sinclair in the wallet (advertising revenue) is the best strategy to get them to back down.

sinclair exec mark hyman even went on cnn and repeatedly compared democrats to "holocaust deniers", which was promptly condemned by the ADL. so a top sinclair exec goes on-air, compares democrats to holocaust deniers and suggests that terrorists are pro-kerry, but in the same breath claims there is no pro-bush bias at sinclair...

sinclair thinks they can call this "news" somehow (even former fcc chair reed hundt thinks that's hogwash) but this isn't the first time sinclair has air blatant PR disguised as news.

and moving on to print... judith miller, nytimes reporter famous for unskeptically printing misinformation for ahmed chalabi (who has since apparently been outed as an iranian spy), is in jail for refusing to cooperate with the valerie plane investigation. so why does the times's ombudsman think it's okay to publicly reveal the names of its readers who criticize its reporters?

Monday, October 11, 2004

when it rains it snows pt. 4

if you haven't checked out the news page recently, you might not be aware that i have two halloween shows coming up! on october 30th (saturday) i'll be playing a family-friendly event at bubba's in downtown indy, with costumes and decorations, hosted by "elvira" (but not the elvira). great big long lineup for that show; maybe i can convince some of my friends to bring their kids to this... and then on halloween itself, i'm playing a show at radio radio with locals lunar event and national touring band asobi sexsu. that will be a shoegazery kind of show. i hope to have new halloween-themed material ready for both shows, so that's two chances to get your dose of mangled media this halloween!

on top of that, just two months after i got my picture in INtake for that "mixed messages" playlist thingy, i will now apparently get a full artist profile in INtake's october 28 issue. the reporter, jessica halverson, just left my house 1/2 hour ago. she seemed well prepared; at least she'd spent enough time on this site to know what to ask about: software, bad taste, copyright issues, sampling, databending, awia, "we will iraq you"... i think we hit most of the good points. the interview lasted an hour or more; her 45-minute tape ran out before we were done. then she took a few photos of me wearing the special awia "cow head" t-shirt that zoke sent me: one of two such shirts in existence. so if you haven't seen that shirt, you might get a chance when the piece runs in a couple weeks.

and it's possible my name will pop up elsewhere in that issue, since either or both of my halloween shows could conceivably make imn's top 10 list, which INTake carries. (the fact that i'm playing those shows is almost certainly why i'm being profiled now anyway, so good promotion for me and for the shows.)

Saturday, October 09, 2004

delayed response

last night when i was voting in the online polls, they all overwhelmingly favored kerry... kerry was getting around 75% in most of them, and even more in some. but freepers have caught up in a riduclous amount of time... so quickly that it seems likely that freepers have taken the time to write hacking scripts in order to pound the servers with bush votes. sort of like they'll try to do to the actual ballot machines on election day. hundreds of thousands of bush votes turning up in the matter of an hour or so isn't very natural (considering you'd already have to be a blindly devoted bushophile to truly think he won the debate, what with all his shouting, leaping off his stool, or the "want some wood?" lie, where bush denied owning part interest in a timber company even though he clearly does. [note that the correction on the cheney-approved, where kerry almost certainly got this factoid, did not go up until after the debate, although the thrust of the argument remains the same]. or the dred scott flub, or anything else mentioned in my previous post.)

but despite the efforts of these bushco black hats, the dems are still faring well in the post-debate efforts: the conventional wisdom has finally come to accept that bush is quick to anger and some are calling him "furious george".

besides, the online polls are terribly unscientific (the sample is unreliable and it's easy to vote multiple times). the overnight immediate polls are a bit more trustworthy and so far they all show kerry winning as well.

bush is cracking under the public spotlight. he's used to his lackeys keeping his isolated from the public and the press. he rarely holds press conferences, and he requires that all attendees at his campaign rallies sign papers pledging their allegiance to him. if you happen to be wearing a kerry/edwards button or shirt, the secret service kicks you out. bush doesn't know how to cope with being publicly challenged, and it's starting to become obvious to everyone.

Friday, October 08, 2004

dred scott?

when asked about who he would appoint to the supreme court, bush pulls a bizarre reference to dred scott out of his ass. who told him to refer to a slavery case from the 1850s? i was like huh? and my sister pointed out that bush clearly didn't understand the dred scott case either (as atrios points out here)

bush definitely did a better job controlling his facial expressions this time around, but some of them still slipped through. at times he blinked so much you'd think he was trying to get something out of his eye; he still occasionally rolled his eyes or smirked or winked conspicuously; and he was often so desperate to respond that he jumped out of his chair before the moderator could acknowledge him and offer him an extension. one time he was so adamant that poor charlie gibson couldn't even get a word in: it was pretty obvious charlie wanted to ask some specific follow-up but bush kept talking, "i need to respond to that. let me respond to that." (abc news already has a story about him fighting his emotions tonight)

but he was off the hook somewhat because the town hall format proved that the split-screen view was not practical for much of the debate. the candidates didn't have podiums; they had chairs but when speaking they would wander around the stage, trying to address the whole crowd a la theatre in the round. the switcher crew had to stay on their toes lest a candidate walk completely offscreen or turn the wrong way.

we noticed at least 2-3 questions that bush didn't answer at all: a question about how he would work to rebuild relations with other countries (he basically just said "i make unpopular decisions but they're the right decision"), and one where she asked him to cite 3 specific mistakes he's made (he couldn't name one; he just said he'd made "tactical mistakes" and "mistakes in who i appointed").

still a clear win for kerry, but not a total blowout like the first debate. now it's time for the post-debate fact-checking and spin. the democrats have totally killing at those so far...

now this has nothing to do with the debate, but i'd been hearing good things about going upriver, supposedly the definitive kerry documentary, but i looked & it's only showing locally at one theater way on the north side of carmel. then i found out it's available online in what appears to be a sanctioned download. i started downloading the torrent right before the debate and it finished downloading awhile ago. hooray for bittorrent!

time to go vote in some online polls...

[okay; srn is down so i can't post right now (in all fairness, i did receive an email stating there'd be scheduled downtime tonight) so let me say that so far kerry is slaying the online polls. he's usually getting at least 70-80% right now. to think the republicans were bragging before the first debate about their rapid response capabilities.]

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

meet the jury

in june, the supreme court issued a landmark ruling in the case blakely v washington:

The Supreme Court's 5-4 ruling in June involved the case of Ralph Blakely, who had pleaded guilty to second-degree kidnapping after abducting his estranged wife at gunpoint in 1998. He could have gotten up to 53 months under Washington law, but the judge concluded the crime was cruel enough to merit a 90-month term.

In throwing out the sentence, the Supreme Court ruled that a defendant's right to a jury trial requires that any factors essential to a sentence lengthier than what the state rules prescribe must be proved to a jury beyond a reasonable doubt.

you see, in the original washington guidelines, a judge alone was responsible for all sentencing decisions, including what aggravating factors should be added to increase a defendant's sentence. the blakely decision set a new precedent that all those factors had to be decided by a jury instead of the judge. as the link explains, the supreme court is right now deliberating follow-up cases to blakely to clarify whether the blakely decision also applies to federal sentencing guidelines in addition to state guidelines.

serendity part ii: this week i was selected to serve on the jury of the first "blakely case" in marion county. my case started this monday, just like the supreme court arguments in the blakely follow-ups.

in our case, the defendant had already been convicted of two counts of sexual misconduct with a minor (a class c felony; the difference between this and "molestation" is that the victim [effectively his grandson; he married the boy's grandmother even before the boy's conception and was the only grampa the boy knew] was older than 14 at the time). we were not retrying that case and didn't get to hear much about that case, only evidence that was tangetial to that case. so we were in a strange position of already knowing the guy was guilty and having to decide if he was extra guilty. most people i tell this to wonder why the original jury that convicted the guy in the first place didn't also decide this case. don't ask me, because that was one of many facts they didn't tell us.

the jury selection actually went pretty quickly. we didn't even enter the courtroom for voir dire until 10:30 and the jury was selected by lunchtime. i suspected that the attorneys just selected every potential juror who didn't immediately freak out at the idea of being on a "child molestor" case.

when we went to lunch, the bailiff escorted us out of the city-county building over to the city market (a very popular marketplace-like lunch spot downtown. almost like a huge food court), where he left us alone until it was time to reconvene. but one juror tried to run off immediately upon leaving the city-county building! that was a very stupid idea, since he'd been given plenty opportunity to get out of the jury: if he'd simply said when asked that he couldn't be impartial, he would've been let go... but oh no, he tries to be a rebel instead. i know they caught him quickly (before the lunch recess was over) and i heard that they had him arrested and threw him in lockup for contempt of court. so let that be a lesson to you: don't try to skip out on jury duty.

we were originally given four "aggravating factors" that the state wanted to prove, whittled down to three by the time we got to deliberations. these are not verbatim as i don't have the jury instructions in front of me, and to remove people's names:

1. the defendant poses a great risk of repeating his behavior because 20+ years ago he had also molested his stepson and/or he'd also molested his youngest (biological) son and/or he'd also molested his eldest (biological) son.

this was the trickiest of all the factors, because the prosecution really fuckled up this one. the state subpoenad both sons (now in their late 30s) and apparently intended to call them to the stand, but never bothered to talk to them personally about that. and when the sons showed up at the courthouse, the state discovered that the boys would not testify to their father having molested them. this was a big coup for the defense, who pulled the sons up on the stand to deny, under oath, that they'd been molested.

very damaging for the state, and eventually reference to the eldest son was removed from consideration, because the state had no evidence to suggest he'd been molested at all. however, the parents of the grandson did testify that the younger son had personally told them about him being molested, and that deteriorated into one side's word against the other. most of the jury seemed more moved by the parents' testimony and were convinced the son was lying, so in the end after much deliberation, we ruled yes for factor #1 as well as subpoint A (the stepson, who did go on the stand and testify to being molested all those years ago) and subpoint B (the biological son; this was the point that held up deliberations for some time, as a couple of us weren't as convinced as the rest; even though the point was effectively moot, we still apparently had to rule on each subpoint).

2. the crime was aggravated because the defendant was in a position of trust with the victim.

this was a no-brainer. the defendant was the only grandfather this kid ever knew and they were very close.

3. the crime was aggravated because the defendant engaged in extensive grooming of the victim.

in this context "grooming" meant that the defendant had basically spoiled the kid rotten in an attempt to butter him up before molesting him. the defendant bought all kinds of gifts for the victim, gave him $30-70 cash every week, took him fishing multiple times each week, and even asked him to look for internet porn. and not only did he show favoritism over all his other grandchildren (all girls), but he apparently only started paying attention to the boy once he hit puberty. after some deliberation we ended up all voting yes to this as well.

4. the defendant needs more rehabilitation than the current max sentence of 4 years (per count) would allow.

this was eventually stricken from the list of aggravating factors for us to decide. the state didn't even attempt to prove it. and how the hell could anyone prove such a thing beyond a reasonable doubt? pull in a bunch of experts about prison rehabilitation? it's basically unprovable; maybe with millions of dollars they could've made a good effort, but they didn't even try because there is no logical argument to prove such a thing.

i was glad the state revoked this one, because it is the only one i would've absolutely refused to vote yes for.

so the jury voted yes on everything they gave to us. at times i wondered if everyone didn't just want to believe all this stuff because the defendant was obviously scum. as one of the other jurors (the other big skeptic) said "the prosecution did such a poor job on this that i don't want to give them everything they ask for." and she had a point: the consensus on the jury was that both attorneys were terrible. but we didn't really give the state everything they asked for, because they had to remove remove a subpoint from factor #1 as well as remove factor #4 altogether.

i was probably the quietest person on the jury, a fact that did not escape others' notice. i was also probably the youngest by a few years. 4 men and 9 women (only one alterate, because of the juror who tried to flee). and there were a few characters, like the woman who claimed she had lost all sense of smell and taste in a head injury a year ago, and told us what local businesses have the dirtiest kitchens (her opinion: arby's is super clean; kfc is not. and don't buy any meat or fresh produce from meijer, because meijer is filthy).

lots of other craziness, like when the defendant claimed on the stand that the detective who'd interviewed him had cut up and rearranged the interview tape in order to incriminate him... that's quite a charge to unload on a cop, and it made him look rather foolish, even giving the state an opening to play more of the tape for us...

anyway, i could ramble on with little anecdotes but it's about time to go home, so i'm done blogging for now. drbmd and i are probably going to the movies tonight to see shaun of the dead, so that should be fun.

thoughtcrime and punishment

ah serendipity... fahrenheit 9/11 came out on dvd yesterday, and yes i bought it (as well as the big one, finally on dvd, and eternal sunshine of the spotless mind). and in the most ridiculous republican attack on moore yet, michigan goopers are actually trying to get moore arrested for giving away free underwear and ramen noodles...

as someone on imn pointed out, it's commonplace for campaigns to give out free crap like t-shirts, buttons, bumper stickers... even purple heart band-aids. i'm certain they do this in michigan like they do in every state. so should all michigan politicians be locked up?

actually, maybe that's not such a bad idea...

Tuesday, October 05, 2004


i got distracted by all my jury duty stuff that i forgot the vice presidentail debates were on until the first hour was over. what i did catch when i finally tuned in was pretty boring. total policy wonk stuff, which most people don't find that interesting.

the trial is over. blog about it tomorrow sometime. tonight i'm off to dnb night; hopefully it'll be better than the last couple times we went.

Sunday, October 03, 2004

jury duty

i've been called in for jury duty on monday morning. i'm not exactly looking forward to it, since i have to get up extra early and throw my schedule off whack, but so be it. it is a day off work; i just don't get to sleep in.

last time i got a jury summons i wasn't selected. we'll see what happens this time around.

star letters

i've been browsing the online editorial section of the indystar, looking to see if they've printed my letter. i don't see mine there, but let's look at the "headlines" for today's letters that are there:
  • Kerry's uncertain position on Saddam
  • Kerry insults allies, but wants more?
  • Kerry enthusiastically supports abortion (as you might guess, this one is anti-kerry, though it's also anti-war)
  • 'Boondocks' exposes campaign irony (the pseudo-irony is that aaron mcgruder is partisan. 4 more years bitch!)
  • Black Catholic will vote for President Bush
  • Terrorists, not Bush, are the warmongers
  • Left-wing wire stories passed off as factual
  • Our children wouldn't be safer under Kerry (this one uses the word "euro-skepticism"!)
  • You can't lump all baby boomers together (aka "i'm seceding from the hippies")

and that's virtually all the letters re: the presidential election. there is only one anti-bush letter on the page ("'Alpha male' column offensive to women"), and it doesn't even mention kerry.

on top of it all, there is only one pro-kernan letter (dem candidate for gov), compared to four pro-daniels (gop bush lapdog opponent) or anti-kernan letters, one anti-julia carson letter (dem rep for my district), and one "don't unplug terry schiavo" letter. the others are about spaceship one and local issues.

what's going on? i always though the editor was supposed to choose letters from a variety of opinions... but there's no diversity of opinion on that letter page: it's straight bush/daniels all the way. that's disgusting! i know indiana is a "red state" and the star is well known to be a conservative paper, but give me a break.

Friday, October 01, 2004

forget poland

progressive bloggers and jammers have already been having fun with bush's exclamation from last night's debate "you forgot poland!" (re: the so-called coalition in iraq)

but now it's been discovered that now poland is pulling out of iraq. this might not be reported very much because the timing is so especially poor for bush. (i can't find it on google news right now)

all the news that fits, we print

a break from the constant debate blogging...

fox news printed and then retracted a totally-false hatchet piece against kerry. the article had kerry referring to himself as a "metrosexual" and attributed to him outlandish quotes like "Didn't my nails and cuticles look great? What a good debate!" and "It's about the Supreme Court. Women should like me! I do manicures."

josh marshallfound the article online (being sure to save a copy to his hard drive as evidence) and started making some calls. soon enough, the offending article disappeared without explanation. a few hours later, josh spoke with fox spokesman paul schur, who told him

"Carl [Cameron] made a stupid mistake which he regrets. And he has been reprimanded for his lapse in judgment. It was a poor attempt at humor."

you might recall that pundits at fox news cackled ceaselessly that heads should roll at cbs for a recent scandal involving memos that were basically true but whose authenticity cbs could not totally verify (although cbs certainly put in some serious work to authentify them). but this is a story where totally false, potentially libelous content somehow slipped through the editorial process and was reported as real news, even though no rational editor could've believed kerry would have said such things.

to their credit, fox eventually posted a retraction and apology:

Earlier Friday, posted an item purporting to contain quotations from Kerry. The item was based on a reporter's partial script that had been written in jest and should not have been posted or broadcast. We regret the error, which occurred because of fatigue and bad judgment, not malice.

what's that about broadcast? it's bad enough that something like that could end up on their website passing for news, but are they indirectly confessing that they actually put these false quotes on-air? that would be horrible if true... i wonder if someone out there has footage of this.

my letter to the star

i wrote a letter to the editor. maybe it'll see print:

I was puzzled when I read your Oct. 1 editorial ("No knockouts in first debate") where you wrote "neither candidate was clearly better than the other in terms of style and neither made any serious gaffes."

Watching the debate in split-screen on C-SPAN was enlightening, as it showed each candidate's actions while the other was speaking. Senator Kerry was cool and collected and took notes; President Bush fidgeted, blinked constantly, and impatiently waved at the moderator to get more time.

Senator Kerry was better prepared on a wider array of topics, whereas President Bush was defensive all night, endlessly repeated a handful of talking points. Kerry's speaking style was strong and clear; Bush stuttered and seemed at best tired, at worst angry and petulant. Kerry's style was leagues beyond Bush's.

And Kerry did catch Bush in at least one major gaffe: when speaking about his reasons for invading Iraq, the president said "the enemy attacked us." Iraq never attacked the United States, as Kerry pointed out and the president impatiently conceded.

Public opinion polls all agree that Senator Kerry won this debate by a large margin. Even on your own message board, an overwhelming number of people agree. You owe it to your readers to admit that Kerry won.

spin to win

i find it telling that very few people seem to be trying to spin the debate as a win for bush. those who can't admit that kerry won (like the indy star) are clinging desperately to the idea that it was a draw. that demonstrates just what a lousy performance bush had, that only the most devout busholaters would pretend bush won. if it had been even remotely close, they would be everywhere ramming home the meme that bush triumphed. but few are so delusional. even many freepers and conservative bloggers had to confess that kerry smoked bush's ass (or at least that bush lost).

now even spinning this as a draw would be tough, and i imagine those who are trying watched the fullscreen version of the debate. bush's reaction shots while kerry spoke were just devastating (if you missed them, has compiled some of the best looks into a short video called "faces of frustration". in that video bush blinks more than a mugger who's just been maced.

the main argument that this was a draw seems to be the "no knockouts" line (what i'll call the "nervous breakdown" rule): because kerry didn't bring bush to tears, because bush didn't completely fall apart onstage, because bush only stammered for 5-10 seconds at a time, they conclude, it wasn't a win for kerry. bush "won" by not being quite as pathetic as possible. rob corddry on the daily show put it best last night when he said "a retarded man fought off the smarted man in the world. we have to reelect him!"

the lead of today's new york times editorial demonstrates my point:
If Americans who tuned into last night's presidential debate were waiting for one of the candidates to catch the other in a fatal error, or leave him stammering, the event was obviously a draw. But if the question was whether Senator John Kerry would appear presidential, whether he could present his positions clearly and succinctly and keep President Bush on the defensive when it came to the critical issue of Iraq, Mr. Kerry delivered the goods.

a fatal error? perhaps there was no fatal error or blue screen of death in this debate, but that's an almost impossibly high bar to hit. that's like saying "they only won the super bowl by two or three touchdowns, and didn't beat the spread, so it's not really a win." (this isn't really what the times is saying, but enough others are.)

star of wonder

no wonder "hoosier" means "redneck" in st louis slang...

the indy star editorial says there were "no knockouts" in the debate, and refuses to admit kerry won. (it gives the copout answer that "the american people" won, and then claims it's not a copour answer.) hello? did you have time to actually watch the debate before deadline? there is no question that kerry triumphed.

the hoosier people aren't buying it though: the comments on the forum overwhelmingly say kerry won.