Last night at the Democratic debate, one of the stickier questions for Barack Obama regarded his unsought support by Lewis Farrakhan. This is totally stupid and shouldn't have been asked - even as stupid as Ron Paul is, I never based any of my claims on his endorsements by racists ass holes, only on the evidence that he was one. But still, it was asked and unfortunately the opportunity was not taken to send back the perfect retort, or even a very good retort. He sounded rather on the defensive.
So Farrakhan, a crazy, ridiculous leader of a fringe black power group, said some words supporting the black candidate. This is really kind of a given in any case and to bring it up in a national debate is to play up fears about a black candidate. He should have pointed this out first. Then he should have pointed out that Lewis Farrakhan is a crazy, ridiculous, irrelevant fringe leader. Then he should have asked if Tim Russert would ask a similar question to Senator Clinton regarding her support by another crazy and ridiculous person; a person who has used a sexual slur on a major Democratic candidate, who has called Episcopalianism "barely a religion," and most relevant of all to talks of the anti-Hebrew Farrakhan, has called Jews Christians in need of perfection.
The question must be asked: will Hillary Clinton reject the support of Ann Coulter?
Rush is just about my favorite band ever. This is because I am a fan of progressive music, and to me Rush embodies prog more than any other band. Also because they completely rock and always have.
So it upsets me when I see things like these Youtube page comments, which include people complaining because the newest Rush album is "alot [sic] different from their old stuff," is not "the real [R]ush." Now, of course, these are comment threads on Youtube, so they are basically guaranteed to be inane and moronic. Still, the idea that someone could ostensibly be a fan of Rush, a truly progressive band, but be upset when they actually progress is just bizarre to me. I would question what they think Rush is about, but then again these are probably not the sort of people who particularly think of what music is about. This is to say nothing of the fact that I happen to really enjoy the latest Rush album.
Another strange thing about Rush as a progressive band: Geddy Lee has said himself that he has never thought of Rush as being a prog rock band, but rather he and Alex Lifeson started it intending to play hard rock, just a bit "different," a bit "weird." In the same interview he said that the M.O. of Rush was always to change gears dramatically every couple of albums. Now, seeing as when Rush started, "prog rock" was not as solidly defined a term as it is now, it is understandable that they didn't set out with the goal of being a prog rock band. But in my view, that they consciously had these two particular ideas - being just a bit different from the norm, and changing gears regularly - is what makes them truly progressive musicians. That is progress.
It is possible that Geddy's feeling of separation from the term "prog rock" is based on a misconception that progressive music is the same as, say, avant-garde or experimental music, which strive to be completely different from the norm, in fact to show blatant and thorough disregard, even disgust towards the norm. Whereas progressive music strives to push the envelope, experimental music makes a new envelope out of scrap paper and candy wrappers.
I get really pissed off with people of all shapes and sizes who trot out the blatantly misogynist lines about Hillary Clinton. How she's shrill, a bitch, reminds people of their annoying/overbearing moms, whatever. It's stupid and it wastes our valubale time. Getting progressive agendas advanced in this country is hard enough without having to stop every five minutes to make sure that the middle-of-the-road female democratic candidate isn't losing just because of her gender. She's not my candidate but I still feel the responsibility as a sensible person to defend her when she's being bludgeoned by right-wing prosimians.
But at this point, if it weren't for the unfortunate precedent it would continue I would just say fuck her, and leave her to the dogs. Her campaign against Barack Obama has been unyieldingly terrible, and she regularly plays up Republican and Republicanesque talking points against him.
Ah, hell, I'll just say it. Hillary R. Clinton: what a cunt.
(Since that article doesn't really completely describe the situation, I will direct attention to Sadly, No!)
In honor of Pink Chocolate Love Heart Day, I'd like to tell you all about the loves of my life.
I am in love, first and foremost, with my bass, a 2001 Ibanez BTB-510 named Charlene. She has treated me well these past seven years and just last night I played her for the fisrt time in close to a month, she having needed a good amount of work done on her electronic components (my love is non-conventional, I know). It was a sweet, sweet reunion.
I also, more recently, in love with Kate Rusby, the angel-voiced Britished folk singer. I have yet to hear a song by her that didn't move me practically to tears. Musicians like she are really the reason I love music. It is so powerful and beautiful, it makes me resort to cheap words like "powerful" and "beautiful."
Kate and her band play "Sir Eglamore"
I am in love, furthermore, with Christopher Eccleston, Michael Chabon, Indian food, John Ford, Maureen O'Hara, Harry Shearer, fuzzy aminals, and of course, my wonderful friends, family, and cat. Happy Pink Chocolate Love Heart Day one and all.
On Saturday I caucused for Baraucus. As you may have noticed he kicked much ass. Still, I would have liked to have gotten at least one of the two Hillary delegates from my precinct won over to Obamarama. In any case, Caucusing is a wonderfully vivid form of real democracy. I've heard some criticize it as giving too much power to the politically active. I don't generally support most forms of oligarchy, but I've got to say, if the form is rule by the people who care and know, maybe that is a good thing. Everyone should have the right to vote, but if they don't care enough to get involved they're just waiving that righte in any case.
But I digress. I gave him my support and he's giving it back already, being now the only one of the Senators running for President to have voted to strike retroactive immunity for telecoms from a security bill. McCain - like every single other Republican in the Senate who was present - of course voted in favor of immunity, while Clinton was not herself present. A disturbing number of Democrats also voted for plutocratic pseudo-justice. Biggest disappointments: Not even fairly dependably sensible GOPS like Specter and Snowe were on the right side of this, nor was Jim Webb, who came into the chamber as a potential Democratic superstar, giving the Blue respones to the '07 State of the Union within days of having been sworn in.
The Senate have completely fucked us today. They have openly declared that if the government tells you to break the law, you just go ahead and break it, fuck everyone else. Especially if you are a major corporation.
If I keep writing this, it's just going to get angrier and angrier. It's impossible to keep a level head talking about this bullshit. Fuck shit balls on all filthy politicians.
I have said in the past that I dread somewhat a John McCain candidacy in the general election, especially if Clinton wins the blue nomination, because of his (somewhat mysterious) appeal among swing voters and moderate Republicans. However, there is a possible silver lining here insofar as this embrace by moderates has corresponded to a firm rejection by the further right (and even, of all things, a declaration by Coultergeist that against McCain, she would support Clinton). Now this to some extent mostly seemed like it would affect the primaries, if anything at all.
However, we have now gotten our first sign that this may have some positive effects for Democratic politics in the general election: James Dobson of the horrific Focus on the Family - and seen by some as the "Most Influential" of all the Evangelical crazies in our fair country- has declared that he will not vote in the general election if McCain is the GOP's candidate.
Now, it remains to be seen how much this one statement will be followed by other similar crazy types, or indeed if the media will pick up on the story at all. But if these do follow, the GOP's chances in the general will take a spectacular nosedive, and I will be a happy camper.
Hello Folks! You may have noticed, depending on how much attention you pay to your url bar, that the Wizard Belt Project is now hosted on a fantastic new website: switchll.net. Switchll.net will soon be positively crawling with music, literary projects, and pictures by or involving yours truly. Once I start updating the site, I'll let you all know on here what's new and awesome on switchll.net.