Fighting Against Making the Pie Higher 10.12.00

Whoa! Gore blew it last night. Again i’m listening to the realaudio files on NPR, and he was so weak that i can see that Bush really did win this one. All Bush had to do is not shit in his own pants, or at least show that he did. The only time it seems that Gore had some fire was when he got Bush on Texas’ health care statistics, and Bush turned it around to make it seem like Gore just made a personal attack on him, by insisting that he was calling him hardhearted. Gore backed off!

He should have hammered Bush right then, saying Bush can define his actions any way he wants to define them, but the numbers are real and they are not fuzzy, and if he think that his actions are not “hardhearted”, the end result is still there, that Bush is a failure as a governor. Why all of this kid glove treatment? Take the Shrub out with the knockout punch. Go for the jugular. I keep hearing Bush supporters say they like him because he’s tough. The only reason they think he’s tough is because he puts people to death! How can he claim to be compassionate and an executioner at the same time?

i guess the problem is just as much with the public as it is with the government and the media, but i hate admitting that. Anyway, instead of the debate, i watched Crocodile Hunter on Animal Planet last night. He was in Florida grabbing rattlesnakes.

Ack! there’s this goony plot to take carbon dioxide out of our atmosphere right now to save us from the Greenhouse effect. Some people want to dump a bunch of iron dust into the oceans, to promote giant plankton blooms, who will supposedly absorb the carbon dioxide, and when the plankton dies, the carbon dioxide sinks to the ocean floor. This just makes me stomach hurt with the wrong-headedness of it all, as it has not even been proven to work in the short term, let alone what the fallout for such drastic action is going to be.

So i don’t have the new Julian Cope yet, but i did finally picked my copies of Cope’s Ye Skellington Chronicles (my vinyl copy sounded like shit) and Droolian on CD! Yahoo!!! I don’t know who coined the phrase “acid campfire songs” for these albums, but that’s exactly what they are. The two halves of Ye Skellington Chronicales were recorded four years apart, but each were recorded with whatever intstruments onhand, with whoever was in the room in just two days. No matter how absurd, banal, or alien the lyrics can get, or how sloppy the instrumentation is, there’s a sense of manic immediacy, and there’s the muse that only follows the most fun and silly those moments can get. Don’t pay attention to how dark the cover is. Imagine that you are sitting in the dark with one of your best friends caught up in the moment of pure entertainment of your rawest imagination.

Droolian is new for me though. This is the first time i’ve heard these songs aside from “Jellypop Perky Jean” (a song about this package of Japanese shampoo that he really digs.) and “Safesurfer” (a guitar epic about a jackass who is a vector for disease.) It was recorded as a benefit album to free Roky Erickson of the 13th Floor Elevators, and the only place it was released in the States back in 1990 was in Austin, Texas, home of Roky. It really seems to be Skellington pt. 1.5 to me. I’m sorry that i have missed out on it for so long, as there’s some rather demented songs on here. “Louis 14th” with its flipped-out “Cajun soul sparks” (Cope’s words) has to be the battiest of the lot though.

Fighting Against Making the Pie Higher 10.11.00

The second debate is going to be tonight. I’m not watching it either. It’s going to be a total joke. I see nothing coming from this. I also got another Nader update, telling why a vote for Nader is not a wasted vote, or essentially a vote for Bush because it’s not for Gore, because of the winner-take-all process of the electoral college, but i think it’s very lame reasoning. Nader should not be letting his staff make limp rationalizations like that, and simply tell them to vote their hearts. It’s still not going to make me vote Libertarian though, as i’m pro-minimum wage and regulation of corporations, as if those laws are repealed in the interest of “free trade,” the government would turn into a bigger joke, and loyalty of oaths to corporations would be more real than ever. They have a cool quiz to let you know where you stand though. All answers are probably monitored by the FBI for future reference. If anyone is interested in knowing what other parties are out there, there’s this directory.

Book of the Day is Forbidden Archaeology! It throws a bunch of odd artifacts, bone fragments, skulls, and general weirdness together under two covers, and makes no explanation as to how the hell any of it got there, even those these oddities don’t fit into any conventional archaeology or history. There’s probably NO theory that will get all of it to fit, as all of the pieces of this puzzle just are not from the same puzzle. It makes one wonder whether some other universe is leaking through into ours, and vice versa. I love any book like this that warps young minds like mine. Warp your mind with Forbidden Archaeology! I dare you!

Oops! and it turns out that Damien Youth and Zane Armstrong are playing a show at the Circle Bar this Friday the 13th, under the full moon. The Circle Bar is just down the street.. what am i going to do?!?!!?

i thought that Lou had taken her site down, but she’s been working quite a lot on it, and has a bunch of fantastic links that I’d love to steal, but would lose sleep if i did that . Check it out!

Fighting Against Making the Pie Higher 10.10.00

Woo! The Brian Jonestown Massacre is going to be playing at the Mermaid Lounge this Friday night with Zoom and some band called Smallstone that i’ve never heard of. To make up my mind whether it’s worth going or not, it’s time to play soem BJM and hope for the best. Playing the catalogue in reverse order is always fun. I really like Bring It All Back Home Again, as it’s laidback, organic bullshit heroin-shooting country music… but is it something that will be good live? Hmmm… i don’t know. I’ll just be getting off from work, so i might wind up fallling asleep against the wall

BJM’s Strung Out in Heaven though… that is worth going to see. Sure, i’m almost certainly going to wind up in a blissed-out, sing song drone, but i’ve already made my feeling clear on this album back when i did reviews, and as time goes on, i only become more fond of albums, not less. Yes, i need some trashy hipster music in my life this Friday night.

DAMN!!!! There’s a new Julian Cope album out that i knew nothing about. Many of you know about my Cope fetish, and even if it’s just a bunch of live stuff that will wind up being properly released on Citizen Caned eventually, i cannot even be bothered to finish today’s post, as i’m ordering it right now.

There’s also a pretty good story of what actually happened in Prague during the World Bank protests on the U-Know portion of the Head Heritage site, but it’s so hard to link to internal parts of that site.

Fighting Against Making the Pie Higher 10.09.00

DAMN!!!! I’m reading a bunch of news articles that are saying that Bush is narrowing Gore’s lead. HUH?!?!?!?!?!?!?

According to all of the reports LAST week, it was a statistical dead heat!!!! What the fuck does the media think that they are doing? All they are doing is jacking around numbers? do they think we don’t remember LAST week? What kind of bumbling reporting is this? Reuters/MSNBC is the worst. Today they have all pro-Bush slanted articles, about Gore going negative, in response to Bush’s criticism of Gore’s record. Since a lot of what Bush said in the first place were LIES, why is what he says “criticism” and when Gore states that Texas is suffering under Bush’s administration, and has the reports to prove it, then it’s not “criticism” but “going negative”?

Forget that doughboy Brian Wilson. Van Dyke Parks is a freak. Am listening to Parks’ Song Cycle at the moment, and finding that he’s one the missing pieces that were neglected in the early reviews on the Elephant 6 collective. The Beach Boys were cited often, but they make more sense for just the Apples in Stereo. For Olivia Tremor Control and Neutral Milk Hotel, Van Dyke Parks is IT. Of Montreal seem that they want to BE Van Dyke Parks. This album is still not one of my ’60s faves, but it’s up there with the most creative and inspired, and deflates my opinion of certain current bands that i thought were putting their own spin on psychedelia, even though Parks would probably never think of himself as psychedelic.

Fighting Against Making the Pie Higher 10.08.00

Sometimes work is too much for me to handle. one woman called, and before she said anything else, she kept tellign me not to put her on hold (three times) and that she was calling long distance from Slidell (uhhhhh… that’s not long distance.) She blurted out the name of a diet book by Suzanne Sommers, and repeated AGAIN that she was in a hurry, and don’t put her on hold, and don’t i dare forget her. Well, i found what i thought was the book, after putting her on hold anyway. I had to run to the section and back to the phone though. I put it on hold, and she drove right over, 15 minutes away. Slidell is not far.

It was the wrong book. I was already in a grouchy mood, as she was rude on the phone. i was helping out John Souter and Older Liz on the registers, doing a return, and voiding a transaction, and that BITCH found me and started railing out me, practially spitting on me, and saying my name “Brett” about three or four times, as if it was a curse. She finished with, “You made me drive all of the way out here for NOTHING!!!” and then stormed out.

I was enraged, as i didn’t even get a chance to respond. What’s worse, there’s a good chance that i truly may have made a mistake. She might have told me the right title of the book that she was looking for. In any case, i don’t want to play a part in her drama against the world. I don’t want to turn into an instrument of karma in such a troll’s life. I’d rather be completely invisible, handing her her book so that she can happily be on her way, and wreck havoc on her own life in impatience, intolerance, and haste without my participation.

Anyway, am downloading songs by the Monochrome Set and Crispin Glover (speciafically, the classic “Clowny Clown Clown”) from Napster. I keep intending to get more stuff on CD by the Monochrome Set, but always find more immediate curiosity… like those first three Wire albums. And i am finding that they are not in print in the States! Not even the compilation On Returning (1977-1979) is available. The same goes for the Adverts’ Crossing the Red Sea with the Adverts. With all of the globalization going on, it seems that they would have these albums in print, especially Wire’s early stuff, since Elastica built their career on them. Even Napster is not helping much with the new quest for more Wire.

Fighting Against Making the Pie Higher 10.07.00

Am skipping Art for Art’s Sake in New Orleans tonight, and it’s killing me. Have been looking forward to this for months. Phooey!

Instead, it’s time to listen to more punk! With the money withdrawn to go to New Orleans, i bought yet another CD, Rhino’s collection “DIY: Anarchy in the UK: UK Punk pt. 1”. I already had a third of the songs on the disc, but it was cheap. What an awesome compilation!!!! I’m now in love with punk even more than before, and foudn that some fo the bands that i swore to investigate later, but much later are now at the top of the pile of must-haves. I knew Wire’s “12XU” through Zoom’s cover, but not the original. My nerves feel like they are made of brittle, strung glass now. How does the rest of their early stuff sound? I only heard their late ’80s stuff before, and i still don’t care for that. I heard the Damned many times before, but they just sounded sloppy and lazy to me. Now i have to get their first album! The Adverts! I barely even knew their name! The Saints!

I am still trying to figure out how these wildly eccentric bands gave birth to all of these extremely orthodox, three chord bashing, closeminded goons that were entrenched in the pages of Maximumrockandroll in the ’90s.

Fighting Against Making the Pie Higher 10.06.00

The electricity keeps going out, so it’s a little difficult to work on the page today.

More planets have been discovered without central stars to orbit! That’s pretty weird. It doesn’t fit into any weird notions I have right now, but it doesn’t fit into popular scientific theory either. Nonetheless, these planets are there, floating freely through space. Wild.

To celebrate, I’m going into a droning meditation with Spacemen 3’s “Perfect Prescription”…

sorry. I fell asleep, and dreamed i was a shining silver crow flying over a blue desert. Spacemen 3 does that to me.

It turns out that Nader not only was invited to the debate by the media Tuesday night, but he had a ticket!!! Of course, someone’s goign to claim that only certain people that they ran checks on could get into the place, but this is Ralph Nader, and the Secret Service has already done a background check on him. Very, very fishy…

Speaking of conspiracies, every novice paranoid should read the Big Book of Conspiracies. It cannot come more highly recommended, right up there with my favorite philosophical physics books, and freaked-out weirdo novels. A coupel of my friends asked me where to start. This book is the place, far moreso than Rule By Secrecy.

I’m taking a stance against the overuse of the word “dude”. I’m a proponent of the word, “man,” even though it makes me sound like a hippie. (I’m going for the beatnik sound though.) Everyone is begging to be mistaken for a surfer. Doesn’t anyone remember the warning by Scatterbrain, “Hey Dude, Don’t Call Me Dude”? Oh, the tragedy of it all…. woe, woe, woe….

Fighting Against Making the Pie Higher 10/5/00

So Radiohead’s Kid A is out. I saw it in the store, and decided that I’m not going to get it yet.. or not at all. Just being ornery. Instead, i bought “Liverpool Sound Collage” by Paul McCartney, with help from the Super Furry Animals. So far, it seems relatively uneventful, no more than an incomplete concrete document of the installation Peter Blake (who i know next to nothing about) has. I’m having fun with it, although only a few snippets that might be worth throwing in as a segue in a mixtape. (I am a little surprised that the last track actually could work as a single!) I got it out of pure sentimentality, something that i cannot feel about Radiohead… and i have a feeling that Liverpool Sound Collage not any less sweeping, grand, and modern than Kid A. NME was ambivalent about this record, but to hell with them. All they want to do is kiss Madonna’s ass lately.

Okay, i hate making lengthy quotes on my site, but these articles from Filer’s Files are so damned freaky that i hate to pass them up! To begin:

PENNSYLVANIA CRITTERS Chuck Rogers reports further details on last weeks FF #38 “flying rod” story. Dennis’ observations indicate the flying rod like object that flew in his home was organic. Apparently it was caught inside a grocery bag in his sink and started to thrash until it flew swiftly out of the bag. Barely visible, it flew into the next room where his lab is located and hit the foam tile ceiling a few times. Sulfur powder was in the lab and used to control parasites on their dog. He spotted the flying rod and sprayed insect spray at it and didn’t see it for a while. He spotted a diaphanous, transparent and obviously immobile (dead) object in the sulfur powder. When he touched the object, it disintegrated into the powder. This organic-ness reminds me of the book “CRITTERS.” I think about these creatures in the sky that we humans sometimes can see, and in this case encounter.

Editor’s Note: Periodically we receive reports of flying objects that appear to be something like flying transparent jelly fish, caterpillars, or rods. They have been video taped and appear to come in various sizes from a few inches long to ten feet or more. They seem to have hundreds of wings that propel them through the sky. Science does not seem aware of them, but we obtain a steady stream of these reports. We urge anyone to attempt to capture them for scientific analysis. Assuming these reports are accurate we may have discovered a new life form. Sometimes they appear to have light making ability similar to lightning bugs.

I had to quote it, as many of you might not have gone to Filer’s Files, or been able to find the exact article I was talking about. Hell, the only reference to a rodlike object that i could find in FF #38 was not related to this article. Anyway, how many other people have heard of “sprites” living in the upper atmosphere? I’ve seen videotapes of them too, and in a way, they seem more fantastic than the alien greys riding around in their “metal” spacecraft… as the sprites just might be native!!!

Okay, so i’m fairly certain that Sasquatch and the chupacabra are real too…

To keep with music, Elliott Smith’s Figure 8 finally clicked with me. It still does not have a whole bunch of single songs that i keep wanting to play over again, but i noticed that I played the album three times in a row, and it flew by. I love an album that steals my time. Perhaps it’s just making me die a little bit faster, but if the songs get enough inside my head that i forget time, that’s a good thing. There’s still weak points. “Everything Means Nothing to Me” sometimes seems longer than the rest of the entire album! Cannot figure out why it fits now, as i’m not particular sad or alienated right now.

I didn’t realize that the new space plane was so close to completion! I haven’t kept up with it in months, and somehow the timeline seemed to reverse itself in my mind, while actually the X-33 is on the verge of taking over the slack from the aging space shuttle any year now. It’s still a little absurd that NASA is pretending that this is cutting edge technology, when the government already has access to other space vehicles, but hey, the mask was getting old. At least it looks more like something from a Japanese anime!

Heard on Morning Edition on Tuesday that only a couple of dozen regular citizens would get tickets for the debate, as the rest were for the media, Secret Service Agents, and the staff, but now i read that they would not even let Ralph Nader sit in the audience? Does that strike anyone as a little weird?

Fighting Against Making the Pie Higher 10/4/00

missed so much yesterday! Mark David Chapman’s parole was denied yesterday. Yoko Ono wrote a letter begging that he be kept in prison. He’s due for parole again in 2002. I don’t hate the guy, but i hope that he doesn’t get out, as there’s no telling what else the shadow government programmed him to do.

Yesterday was a decision by the city of Athens, Georgia on whether to save the trestle that appears on the cover of REM’s “Murmur”. REM fans pulled it off, and the county bought it, and probably will turn it into a “greenway.” They are still trying to raise money. It’s a little odd to me, as it’s not exactly like the Beatles and the longlost Cavern, but I’m all for greenways, whatever the reason, and i feel down whenever i walk around downtown Hammond to see strange landmarks that mean something only to me and my friends torn down, like the Wilton Hilton (where both Lucas and Tim lived at different times,) the original house of the Abadonian compound (Damien’s childhood home,) and Rachel’s Lilliputian forest in her backyard.

For all of my anticipation these past few weeks, i didn’t watch the presidential debate last night. I drank a couple of Rolling Rocks and watched a documentary about baboons’ social dynamics in Ethiopia on Animal Planet. After that, there didn’t seem any need to watch some baboons in suits chittering and howling. I regret it this morning, as I wanted to compare what happened in my eyes to what the media is reporting. You could listen to the whole thing here, but i doubt if you have the patience either, or coudl browse and pick out bits and pieces here.

What I’m hearing and reading this morning is that it was an even match, and whoever already made up their mind only had his opion reinforced, and whoever was undecided was likely to remain undecided. I know my mind is already made up, but most of the clips i heard played of Dubya were limp, as they were based rumors and assumptions, never with facts, like mocking Gore for claiming to invent the Internet (he never said that!) saying that Russia should take more responsibility for stability of the Balkans (Russia is not the USSR of Reagan, and they can barely hold their own country together right now,) Now some jackass commentators are asking “average folks” (yeah, right) and they talk about how Bush was so clear on his plans and so polite! What debate were they listening to?

Dubya keeps talking about how the Democrats don’t understand that it’s “the people’s” tax money, and if it’s surplus, then it should be returned to the people. He wants to “share” it with us! Ain’t that generous! (Never mind that the “people” translates as “rich people”, and the public is too arrogant to accept that.) Jackass! What about “our” government being of the people, by the people, and for the people? The government should BE the people. Why doesn’t anyone get upset that no one even plays lip-service to that anymore?

And more more Dubya slam…. to quote an AP transcript, `I felt there needed to be a better sense of responsibility of what was going on in the White House,” he said. “I believe they’ve moved the sign the buck stops here from the Oval Office desk to the buck stops here at the Lincoln Bedroom.” What kind of nonsequitor is that? (Whoever wrote the story in the first place needs a better editor too!) How is that being polite? What about his daddy who was “out-of-the-loop” in the Iran-Contra affair? Dubya himself has already avoided plenty of responsibility as governor of Texas with deliberate violations of air pollution restrictions and kickbacks in the funeral industry…. but read this article about how Dubya has been renting out rooms in the governor’s mansion in Austin for years!

It’s not that Gore is a hero though. The best analysis I’ve read seems to be here.

To hell with all of that anyway…. I heard a cool piece on All Things Considered yesterday by Mark Herstgaard about how the Commission on Presidential Debates is destroying the ideal of deocracy by arbitrarily creating the absurdly high requirements of passing five nationals polls in which the candidate gets above 15% each time. Hertsgaard pointed out that third party candidate Jesse Ventura only had 7% (i’ve read 10% elsewhere) in the polls before the OPEN debates in Minnesota. Pretty sinister isn’t it?

Even before i heard that REM tidbit yesterday, I had the urge to listen to them lately, and finally got the motivation to dig out their albums. I’m starting with Murmur since that’s the one that was referred to…. and it’s nice early fall music to my sentimetal mind. My fave REM album is still Life’s Rich Pangeant, as it seems to have an injection of humor that is missing in a lot of REM’s work, and an energy affects me more than the other albums. Murmur is still a great debut LP though, and would be in the stereo more often if i had a more personal connection to it. I was not even close to listening to rock music at that time, and it’s odd to think of what else was around at that time. Sometimes i think that the “past” is written when i’m not looking.

Fighting Against Making the Pie Higher 10/3/00

I just got this link from Nick. I always felt bad for the poor guy once the Romans took his pretty red robe, now we can make up for it, in a small way… now we can dress up Jesus. I feel better already, as i have my own little ensemble picked out for him.

And to compete with that, Lou jokingly sent a link about Dick Cheney being a child abuser and a rapist. Personally, i think that the accounts of Cathy O’Brien are the products of paranoid schizophrenia, but crazy articles like these wind up getting the same coverage as legitimate reports, like Dubya going AWOL in the Air National Guard or that the Bush campaign deliberately leaked the Bush debate prep videotape.

So the debate is tonight… yuck. It’s funny how “close” the race is to the media’s eye. I don’t think it’s that close. There’s two decent reasons why they would want the race to be close. First, if Gore was clearly winning, it would not be a story, and not worth reporting. The media needs a conflict to report. Second, and more paranoid, the media is owned by corporations that put up enough money for the candidates, and they want to scare the voters back to the middle of the road, as if the public is allowed NOT to choose between the lesser of two evils, that they might turn to a third party to choose someone that they actually would want to vote for!

Today in the Supreme Court it’s being decided whether it’s constitutional to set up roadblocks to search randomly for cars with drug-sniffing dogs, without any prior suspicion before stopping the cars. Of course it’s not constitutional, but I’m betting that they will let the precedent stand.