Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Pictures of Southeast Asia Now On My Flickr Photostream

I have added pictures from our 2006 trip to Southeast Asia to my Flickr Photostream.

In particular...

Pictures of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam here.

Pictures of the region of Cambodia near Angkor Wat here


I'll have more pictures from this trip to post over the next few weeks. And, if I can find the time, perhaps some thoughts on what we saw.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Pictures of New Mexico

New pictures at my Flickr Photostream.

This time, it's images I took while in New Mexico with Diane in 2005.

Check it out here

Fake political attack raises disturbing questions

Here is a disturbing story from the campaign trail...

It appears that a McCain campaign worker made up a story about a black man attacking her for simply having a McCain bumper sticker on her car.

Turns out it was all a lie and she made the whole thing up.

Story here.

This is disturbing on two levels:

1) If the person did this on her own volition without encouragement from the campaign, this woman has serious mental health issues.

2) If the person did this upon the encouragement by the McCain campaign (even by some low level yahoo) then it shows how desperate the McCain campaign is. It also strongly suggests there is a racist element in that campaign...or at least one willing to go to the next level of race baiting to make political points.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Music to Rock the Election

If you're like me, you're starting to think about what you might do on election night 2008. One thing you might do is go to or host an election watch party. Thing is, talking heads and video clips can get pretty boring. And lets face it, it's the same group of pundits you've been watching for a year or more. So, you might want some music to help you enjoy the evening.

Most of what you want to see about the election will be the vote tallies, who is winning what state, popular vote, polling results, etc. Guess what? You don't need the sound to get that. It's all visual. So, turn down the sound of the TV and get your iPod going with some appropriate selection of tunes.

And this is another thing I've been thinking about. What songs should an election party have. Well, certainly take into account your friends' tastes, but for my crew it's rock and roll. For those sharing similar tastes, here are three lists for election eve I put together...

As you watch the results come in, list #1 is songs that keep you and your friends in an upbeat and appropriate "up the establishment" mood...but still positive on the whole thing.
  • MC5 - Kick Out the Jams
  • Black Rebel Motorcycle Club - Generation
  • Carbon/Silicon - The Network is Going Down
  • The Clash - Revolution Rock
  • Green Day - American Idiot
  • Iggy & The Stooges - Raw Power
  • Joe Strummer - Johnny Appleseed
  • Manic Street Preachers - Found that Soul
  • Morrissey - In the Future When All is Well
  • Muse - Time Is Running Out
  • Ned's Atomic Dustbin - Grey Cell Green
  • Oingo Boingo - Controller
  • The Professionals - Kick Down the Doors
  • R.E.M. - Supernatural Superserious
  • Rolling Stones - Street Fighting Man
  • Sex Pistols - Liar
  • Sugar - Changes
  • Vampire Weekend - A-Punk
  • Weezer - Possibilities

If Obama wins, you're gonna want to celebrate. Below is a list to help you out. McCain fans reading this need to go somewhere else to find your fix.
  • Beach Boys - Good Vibrations
  • Blur - Song 2
  • Bob Marley - Coming In From the Cold
  • Social Distortion - Far Behind
  • The Clash - Lets Go Crazy
  • Elvis Costello - Pump It Up
  • The Jesus & Mary Chain - Coast to Coast
  • The La's - There She Goes
  • The Lashes - Yesterday Feels Like A Year
  • Led Zeppelin - Rock and Roll
  • Manic Street Preachers - Unstoppable Salvation
  • The Pixies - Here Comes Your Man
  • Radio 4 - Absolute Affirmation
  • Rolling Stones - Rip This Joint
  • Public Image Limited - FFF (Farewell my Fair weather Friend)
  • U2 - Beautiful Day
  • The Who - Baba O'Riley
IF McCAIN WINS (or there's no result)
Now, if McCain wins, you're gonna be pissed off and in no mood to feel optimistic about much of anything. Same goes if the race is not over on election day...we all know where that will end up. Well, rock is pretty good at communicating angst if you hadn't noticed. So, list #3 is custom built for this scenario...filling the bill that will be your rage, dissapointment and resignation that the bad guys stole another one:

  • AC/DC - Highway to Hell
  • Arcade Fire - Neon Bible
  • Black Rebel Motorcycle Club - Kill the U.S. Government
  • Carbon/Silicon - What the Fuck?
  • The Clash - Know Your Rights
  • The Enemy - Away From Here
  • Green Day - Chump
  • The Hives - See Through Head
  • Manic Street Preachers - Democracy Coma
  • Morrissey - America is Not the World
  • Nirvana - Negative Creep
  • Placebo - You Don't Care About Us
  • Jarvis Cocker - Running the World
  • Radiohead - Let Down
  • The Ramones - I Wanna Be Sedated
  • Rolling Stones - Paint It Black
  • The Smiths - Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now
  • The Strokes - The Way It Is
So there you go. Three lists to get you started. Add your own for a full night's entertainment.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Thought of the Day - AC/DC Rock!

OK, a random thought for sure, but it seems overwhelmingly clear that in these troubling times where the future is uncertain that there is one thing you can always count on...AC/DC rocking your ass off. (Artwork from AC/DC)
For whatever reason AC/DC seem to be getting a bit of media coverage recently. They may be coming out with a new CD, and if so that explains it.

Since I've been seeing their stuff online and TV, I went back to the old iTunes library and fired up some vintage AC/DC like Highway to Hell, High Voltage and Back in Black. 

You know what?

They rock! Love it.

OK, back to regularly scheduled programming.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Fraud About Fraud II

More Republican and conservative hi-jinks to try and reduce the number of registered voters in key districts of key states to make it more likely Republicans (and especially McCain) win. 

See here for what they're up to in Ohio.

And, while that's going on, McCain is now publicly raising the issue that "voter fraud" could cost him Florida. See here for his comments on TV.

So, it's shaping up as a big one-two punch. In key battleground states, reduce voters likely to vote for Obama + raise the "alarm" about voter fraud = a very close race Republicans may win or at least one they can litigate to a win.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Fraud About Fraud

In the 2000 and the 2004 presidential elections there were - to say the least - major questions about voters being turned away at the polls and purging of voters off the voter roles in key states...all of it conveniently occurring in districts likely to vote Democratic and in key battleground states (Florida and Ohio) run by Republican administrations. Hmmm. Guess who ended up winning those states? Right. Bush.

Conservatives do this in key districts because lower turnout favors their candidates, and if they can manage to get the "right" type of voter from their perspective to not have their vote counted (i.e. minorities) they stand an even better chance of winning. Problem is, this is pretty un-American and definitely not "country first" behavior. More KKK-like behavior. And, as a kicker...these incidents were not investigated because, guess again...who do you think runs those districts and states? Right again. Republicans. So, they don't investigate "their own." This was especially true in 2000 as Bush's brother was the governor of Florida.

Anyway, in 2000, 2004 and ever since, conservative groups have tried to "muddy the waters" to help minimize their pretty obvious disruption of elections by asserting that Democrats have systematically have perpetrated voter fraud by trying to get bogus voters registered so more votes can be cast for Democratic candidates. As in, hey, they're doing crazy stuff too!

Mind you, there have been no findings of "voter fraud" in places charged by conservatives. But hey, little things like facts don't stop "true believer" conservatives. And, the few among the American public who actually do pay attention to news and politics are unclear on exactly what's happening and just kinda give up trying to figure out who is to blame...or they feel good enough to blame the other party.

Now, this election year conservatives are doing it again but smarter. Instead of just their own voter suppression activities along with assertions of voter fraud, conservatives are now proactively planting voter fraud cases to set up the possibility of contesting close elections in battleground states later. 

A good overview of what's happening now is

And here.

The idea for them is to raise the question of voter fraud in key districts of key states that are expected to be close on election day. In my opinion, to get all this going I think conservative groups may be actually manufacturing and submitting the false forms that are submitted to liberal voter registration groups. 

At any rate, if certain state races for president do turn out to be close, they can go back and say, "see, it's voter fraud by Democratic-leaning organizations" and make their legal and political case that certain large blocks of votes are not counted...or are at least taken out of the official tally while they are questioned or examined. In a close election, that could very conceivably give them room to declare victory in those districts and states.

And if the election is close but they are denied none the less, conservatives can again use the "muddy the waters" strategy to shuck the blame again.

So, how about about we not make this a close election?

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

McCain Campaign Now Calling Obama A Terrorist

What does political desperation sound like? What do people with no new ideas, a mean streak and contempt for the American people talk about in a campaign?

We know the answers now.

The McCain/Palin ticket showed how scummy and desperate they were when they started their campaign against Obama with an advertisement that falsely accused Obama of "wanting your children to know about sex before learning to read," and when the campaign acknowledged that it would lie if that's what it took to win.

Now, as of this week, we know that the McCain/Palin ticket will go to the next level to enter truly evil and cynical territory.

That campaign is now falsely accusing Obama of "palling around with terrorists" and, by implication, being one himself. In of Obama if you want to die. At one rally, that refrain earned a call from the audience to "kill him."

What's even more appalling is that their campaign seems to see such diabolical and false charges as a fair tactic to "win the game." Country first my ass.

See article here.