Monday, May 31, 2010

Domination through negligence


Here's the blueprint for world domination:

Blow up an oil well, starting a massive oil spill. Let the oil go and go, then spray gunk on it that makes things worse and makes cleanup workers sick.

Destroy the environment; destroy people's livelihoods. Make them completely dependent on the jobs you create to clean up the mess you made.

Abuse your new employees, deny them safety equipment, cover up when they fall ill, threaten them and their jobs if they speak out.


BUY OFF the government and -- voila! -- you're King of the World! Cable News Network explains all this on their website:
The restraining order requests that BP stop using dispersants without providing "appropriate personal protective equipment" to workers.

Corexit, a dispersant, is being sprayed into the Gulf to break down the oil. The safety data information sheet from the manufacturer states that people should "avoid breathing in vapor" from Corexit, and that masks should be work when Corexit is present in certain concentrations in the air.

BP has not supplied workers with masks when they work near the oil and dispersants.

"We're been carrying out very extensive air quality since early on in this exercise, to make sure that we have working safe conditions, and thus far not found situations where there are air quality concerns that would require face masks," MacEwen said.

He added that workers who want to wear masks are "free to do so" as long as they receive instructions from their supervisors on how to use them.

According to Guidry from the shrimpers' association, BP told workers they were not allowed to wear masks.

"Some of our men asked, and they were told they'd be fired if they wore masks," he said.

Tony Hayward, the chief executive officer of BP, offered another explanation for the fishermen's illness: spoiled food.

"Food poisoning is clearly a big issue," Hayward said Sunday. "It's something we've got to be very mindful of. It's one of the big issues of keeping the Army operating. You know, the Army marches on their stomachs."

An expert on foodborne illness cast doubt on Hayward's theory.

"Headaches, shortness of breath, nosebleeds -- there's nothing there that suggests foodborne illness," said Dr. Michael Osterholm, a professor at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health. "I don't know what these people have, but it sounds more like a respiratory illness."
WHAT DOES it matter, Cap? It's not like their lives have any value -- they're serfs!

Thought experiment: If a government can't fulfill its basic role, protecting the welfare of citizens,
what then is it good for? And what legitimacy can it possibly have?

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Dear Britain, I think you have a problem


Big protest against BP today in New Orleans. Among the sights there was this, as captured by The Times-Picayune.

Mr. Cameron, I think your UK-headquartered oil company may have presented you with a bit of a sticky wicket, public-relationswise.

Trust me, as BP continues to make the Gulf into a massive dead zone and wipe out entire cultures, you will find this display of outrage is only the "tip of the spear," so to speak.

Don't screw with a wounded Tiger


'Tigers, go in once more, go in my sons, I'll be great gloriously God damned if the sons of bitches can ever whip the Tigers!'

Dear Mr. President:

Allow me to add to what Garland Robinette just told you.

If the United States of America persists in seeing Louisiana as a state with first-class natural resources and second-class citizens -- this while a multinational oil company and the neglect of "les Americains" destroy its environment, culture and economy -- it might be useful for you to research how the LSU Tigers came to get that athletic nickname.


IN OTHER WORDS, don't push an entire people further into the kind of outrage people get when they know they're dead men walking, and they know who did it to them. Because if die they are going to do, they damn well will take their murderers along for the ride.

And trust me, a Louisiana native, on this. If that Rubicon is crossed, "les Americains" will discover quickly that Taliban fighters and Iraqi insurgents are rank amateurs.

The Vietnam War happened for a reason. As did the Bolshevik Revolution and any number of other internecine conflagrations that left a legacy of death and destruction in their wake. The results may have been all wrong -- and all tragic -- but the fuse was lit for damned good reasons.

Don't go there.

AMERICANS are Americans. Period. The minute we believe that to be no longer true, it is the United States that will be a dead country walking.

The actions of the U.S. government from this moment onward will determine whether or not the last casualty of the Deepwater Horizon catastrophe will be the legitimacy of the American political system itself.

Oh my God! BP killed Louisiana!


You bastards!

The Associated Press explains how the oil company's latest attempt to stop the BPocalypse joined the long list of epic BP fails:

The company determined the "top kill" had failed after it spent three days pumping heavy drilling mud into the crippled well 5,000 feet underwater. It's the latest in a series of failures to stop the crude that's fouling marshland and beaches, as estimates of how much oil is leaking grow more dire.

The spill is the worst in U.S. history — exceeding even the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster — and has dumped between 18 million and 40 million gallons into the Gulf, according to government estimates.

"This scares everybody, the fact that we can't make this well stop flowing, the fact that we haven't succeeded so far," BP PLC Chief Operating Officer Doug Suttles said Saturday. "Many of the things we're trying have been done on the surface before, but have never been tried at 5,000 feet."


(snip)

Word that the top-kill had failed hit hard in fishing communities along Louisiana's coast.

"Everybody's starting to realize this summer's lost. And our whole lifestyle might be lost," said Michael Ballay, the 59-year-old manager of the Cypress Cove Marina in Venice, La., near where oil first made landfall in large quantities almost two weeks ago.

Johnny Nunez, owner of Fishing Magician Charters in Shell Beach, La., said the spill is hurting his business during what's normally the best time of year — and there's no end in sight.

"If fishing's bad for five years, I'll be 60 years old. I'll be done for," he said after watching BP's televised announcement.

The top official in coastal Plaquemines Parish said news of the top kill failure brought tears to his eyes.

"They are going to destroy south Louisiana. We are dying a slow death here," said Billy Nungesser, the parish president. "We don't have time to wait while they try solutions. Hurricane season starts on Tuesday."
OK, I KNOW the cofferdam, the siphon, the top kill and the junk shot all failed to make a dent in the geyser of doom's flow rate. But have BP engineers tried the "jerk shot"?

You know, the procedure where you put a cork in the mouth of BP CEO Tony Hayward, shoot him under pressure into the damaged wellhead, then let him expand from his own hot air until the oil flow is stopped.

The "jerk shot" may or may not work but, in this case, stopping the oil flow would just be lagniappe,
right?

Saturday, May 29, 2010

No nothing on the sidewalk


Dude! If you can't skateboard or roller-skate on the sidewalk in the Old Market, it's not like you can do it on the century-old brick streets!

That would be, like, fatal!

Oh.

Gotcha.

Fascists!

Friday, May 28, 2010

3 Chords & the Truth: Just being


The theme of this week's edition of 3 Chords & the Truth is being.

There.

It's as simple as that. Just being. No big message, no overriding machination to the conglomeration . . . just being.


EXISTING in the moment. Taking life -- and the Big Show -- as it comes, and enjoying the moment.

It's the Memorial Day weekend, and it seems to me that Memorial Day, and all it stands for, is as good a time as any to just be. And be content. And grateful.

But mainly just being. There.

I mean, I'm no Chance the Gardener -- well, maybe I'm kind of close to Chance the Gardener, except that nobody listens to me -- but that's what I have to say as we ease on into summer. With 3 Chords & the Truth . . . and the music.

And as we're just being there -- and here.

It's 3 Chords & the Truth, y'all. Be there. Aloha.

A message from our sponsors. . . .


For the Lawrence Welk crowd.


For the Three Dog Night crowd.

That is all . . .
as inexplicable as it is.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

A shrimper explains it all oil


"We need the jobs. We need the oil, but what's the trade-off? We in south Louisiana and that -- we're the trade-off. They're trading us off for domestic oil for the rest of the country."

Michael Roberts, shrimper

Now that you've watched the Time video, read this -- Roberts' essay on TakePart.com. It is heartrending.

HERE'S a snippet:
As we headed farther south, we saw at least a dozen boats, which from a distance appeared to be shrimping. But shrimping was not what they were doing at all; instead they were towing oil booms in a desperate attempt to corral oil that was pouring into our fishing grounds. We stopped to talk to one of the fishermen towing a boom, a young fisherman from Lafitte. What he told me floored me.

“What we are seeing in the lake, the oil, is but a drop in the bucket of what is to come,” he said. He had just come out of the Gulf of Mexico and said, “It was unbelievable, and the oil runs for miles and miles and is headed for shore and into our fishing grounds."

I thought what I had already seen in the lake was bad enough for a lifetime. We talked a little while longer, gave the fisherman some protective respirators, and were soon on our way. As we left the small fleet of boats working feverishly, trying to corral the oil, I became overwhelmed with what I had seen.

I am not really emotional and consider myself a pretty tough guy. You have to be to survive as a fisherman. But as I left that scene, tears flowed down my face and I cried. Something I have not done in a long time, but would do several more times this day. I tried not to let my grandson, Scottie, see me crying. I didn’t think he would understand that I was crying for his stolen future. None of this will be the same, for decades to come. The damage is going to be immense and I do not think our lives here in south Louisiana will ever be the same. He is too young to understand. He has an intense love for our way of life here. He wants to be a fisherman and a fishing guide when he gets older. That’s all he’s ever wanted. It is what he is, it is in his soul, and it is his culture. How can I tell him that this may never come to pass now, now that everything he loves in the outdoors may soon be destroyed by this massive oil spill?

How do we tell a generation of young people in south Louisiana who live and breathe this bayou life, that the life they love so much could soon be gone? How do we tell them? All this raced through my mind and I wept.

BP's f***ing proper f***ing dog-and-pony show


Well, I think I now know more about f***king proper f***ing booming than BP does -- not to mention the media, which pretty much has fired all the f***ing proper f***ing journalists who f***ing know s*** about anything at all.

That's the point of this, er,
earthily put video dramatizing a Daily Kos essay from a couple of weeks ago by someone with 30 years of oilfield experience who does know, to use the proper industry terminology, "f***ing proper f***ing booming."

So here you go. Watch and get even more outraged.

See no oil, see no evil


So, when you cast your vote, whom did you vote for, Louisiana? BP, Chevron or Exxon?

They weren't running, you say? Well, you're right. They weren't.

That's the problem. You didn't vote for a one of the sons of bitches. But when they say "frog," the sons of bitches you
did vote for jump.

Newsweek recounts just how, after killing the Louisiana coast with its oily mess, BP has the local and federal officials who allegedly work for the public dancing to their tune, not ours:

As BP makes its latest attempt to plug its gushing oil well, news photographers are complaining that their efforts to document the slow-motion disaster in the Gulf of Mexico are being thwarted by local and federal officials—working with BP—who are blocking access to the sites where the effects of the spill are most visible. More than a month into the disaster, a host of anecdotal evidence is emerging from reporters, photographers, and TV crews in which BP and Coast Guard officials explicitly target members of the media, restricting and denying them access to oil-covered beaches, staging areas for clean-up efforts, and even flyovers.

Last week, a CBS TV crew was threatened with arrest when attempting to film an oil-covered beach. On Monday, Mother Jones published this firsthand account of one reporter’s repeated attempts to gain access to clean-up operations on oil-soaked beaches, and the telling response of local law enforcement. The latest instance of denied press access comes from Belle Chasse, La.-based Southern Seaplane Inc., which was scheduled to take a New Orleans Times-Picayune photographer for a flyover on Tuesday afternoon, and says it was denied permission once BP officials learned that a member of the press would be on board.


(snip)

Photographers who have traveled to the Gulf commonly say they believe that BP has exerted more control over coverage of the spill with the cooperation of the federal government and local law enforcement. “It’s a running joke among the journalists covering the story that the words ‘Coast Guard’ affixed to any vehicle, vessel, or plane should be prefixed with ‘BP,’ ” says Charlie Varley, a Louisiana-based photographer. “It would be funny if it were not so serious.”

The problem, as many members of the press see it, is that even when access is granted, it’s done so under the strict oversight of BP and Coast Guard personnel. Reporters and photographers are escorted by BP officials on BP-contracted boats and aircraft. So the company is able to determine what reporters see and when they see it. AP photographer Gerald Herbert has been covering the disaster since the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded on April 20. He says that access has been hit or miss, and that there have been instances when it’s obvious members of the press are being targeted. “There are times when the Coast Guard has been great, and others where it seems like they’re interfering with our ability to have access,” says Herbert. One of those instances occurred early last week, when Herbert accompanied local officials from Plaquemines Parish in a police boat on a trip to Breton Island, a national wildlife refuge off the barrier islands of Louisiana. With them was Jean-Michel Cousteau, son of Jacques, who wanted to study the impact of the oil below the surface of the water. Upon approaching the island, a Coast Guard boat stopped them. “The first question was, ‘Is there any press with you?’ ” says Herbert. They answered yes, and the Coast Guard said they couldn’t be there. “I had to bite my tongue. That should have no bearing.”

Local fishermen and charter boat captains are also being pressured by BP not to work with the press. Left without a source of income, most have decided to work with BP to help spread booms and ferry officials around. Their passengers used to include members of the press, but not anymore. “You could tell BP was starting to close their grip, telling the fishermen not to talk to us,” says Jared Moossy, a Dallas-based photographer who was covering the spill along the Gulf Coast earlier this month. “They would say that BP had told them not to talk to us or cooperate with us or that they’d get fired.”

OH, IT GETS better than this. Check out this from Mother Jones:
The next day, cops drive up and down Grand Isle beach explicitly telling tourists it is still open, just stay out of the water. There are pools of oil on the beach; dolphins crest just offshore. A fifty-something couple, Southern Louisianians, tell me this kind of thing happened all the time when they were kids; they swam in rubber suits when it got bad, and it was no big deal. They just hope this doesn't mean we'll stop drilling.

The blockade to Elmer's is now four cop cars strong. As we pull up, deputies start bawling us out; all media need to go to the Grand Isle community center, where a "BP Information Center" sign now hangs out front. Inside, a couple of Times-Picayune reporters circle BP representative Barbara Martin, who tells them that if they want passage to Elmer they have to get it from another BP flack, Irvin Lipp; Grand Isle beach is closed too, she adds. When we inform the Times-Pic reporters otherwise, she asks Dr. Hazlett if he's a reporter; he says, "No." She says, "Good." She doesn't ask me. We tell her that deputies were just yelling at us, and she seems truly upset. For one, she's married to a Jefferson Parish sheriff's deputy. For another, "We don't need more of a black eye than we already have."

"But it wasn't BP that was yelling at us, it was the sheriff's office," we say.

"Yeah, I know, but we have…a very strong relationship."

"What do you mean? You have a lot of sway over the sheriff's office?"

"Oh yeah."

"How much?"

"A lot."

When I tell Barbara I am a reporter, she stalks off and says she's not talking to me, then comes back and hugs me and says she was just playing. I tell her I don't understand why I can't see Elmer's Island unless I'm escorted by BP. She tells me BP's in charge because "it's BP's oil."

"But it's not BP's land."

"But BP's liable if anything happens."

"So you're saying it's a safety precaution."

"Yeah! You don't want that oil gettin' into your pores."

"But there are tourists and residents walking around in it across the street."

"The mayor decides which beaches are closed." So I call the Grand Isle police requesting a press liason, only to get routed to voicemail for Melanie with BP. I call the police back and ask why they gave me a number for BP; they blame the fire chief.

I reach the fire chief. "Why did the police give me a number for BP?" I ask.

"That's the number they gave us."

"Who?"

"BP."

When I tell Chief Aubrey Chaisson that I would like to get a comment on Barbara's intimations—and my experience so far—that BP is running the show, he says he'll meet me in a parking lot. He pulls in, rolls down the window of his maroon Crown Victoria, and tells me that I can't trust the government or big corporations. When everyone saw the oil coming in as clear as day several days before that, BP insisted it was red tide—algae. Chaisson says he's half-Indian and grew up here and just wants to protect the land. When I tell him BP says the inland side of the island is still clean, he spits, "They're f***ing liars. There's oil over there. It's already all up through the pass." The spill workers staying at my motel later tell me they've been specifically instructed by BP not to talk to any media, but they're pissed because BP tried to tell them that the crude they were swimming around in to move an oil containment boom was red tide, dishwashing-liquid runoff, or mud.

The next morning at breakfast, the word at Sarah's Restaurant is that the island will have to be shut down; the smell of oil was so strong last night one lady had to shut all her windows and turn on her AC; if her asthma keeps up like this, she'll need to go on her breathing machine tonight.
THE AMERICAN "PATRIOTS" of the tea-party movement are worried about how the "socialists" are going to kill freedom and oppress the little guy.

Me, I'm worried about the capitalists who already have.

Kids say the darnedest things

A younger colleague said the darnedest thing to Mrs. Favog today, upon seeing the latest obituary on the wire: "Who's Art Linkletter?"

For those of us who watched Art Linkletter's House Party every day as tots and, later, whenever we weren't in school, this represents the Art Linkletter
we knew.







They were expendable

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The unholy sacrifice of the gas


I can't look at this picture from the oil-fouled Louisiana coast without tears coming to my eyes.


It's a brown pelican -- the state bird -- turned almost black with oil. It will die. It is doomed.

Then again, so is Louisiana, my home state.
Maybe.

Above is a picture of not only an ecological catastrophe --
a mass killing of wildlife unlike anything since the last ice age, or the last megavolcano blew, or the last asteroid strike -- but of a murder. The greed and negligence of an oil company, BP, and the corruption and incompetence of a government, the United States, now has claimed the environment, the culture and the economy of a large part of a state that's damn well suffered enough.

The oil is in the marshes -- the wetlands. Good luck getting that out.

And everything in those oil-soaked wetlands is dead, or will be soon enough. The shrimp. The oysters. The birds. The roseau cane that holds it all together, that keeps it from becoming open Gulf water, however tenuously even before this crude apocalypse.


THAT WILL DIE, and whole masses of the Louisiana coast will join thousands of square miles of other masses of Louisiana coast over the last seven decades in becoming the former coastline of my home state. South Louisiana was fast disappearing due to coastal erosion, subsidence and sea-level rise even before now.

Now it will disappear a lot faster.

Along with it, other things will vanish forever. The oil already has wiped out the fishing industry in southeastern Louisiana, and with it the livelihoods of people who have done nothing else. As their fathers, and grandfathers, and great-grandfathers had done nothing else but harvest God's bounty that greed is killing.

That, likely, is gone for decades . . .
if not forever. The culture centered on that is gone, too. It's a dead man walking, this culture that in large part informs the identity of an entire state -- an entire people. It has been executed by a lethal, uncontrolled injection of Louisiana Sweet crude.

It is a form of genocide.
What kind? The kind that you don't have to sit on trial at The Hague after committing. The kind, unfortunately, that doesn't end with the perpetrators swinging from the end of a rope.

Accidents happen. Gross neglect that ends in an "accident" is a crime. In this case, a crime against nature and a crime against humanity.

A crime against a people who, to the federal government and the petrochemical industry, must have a gigantic
"Kick Me!" sign attached to its collective back. Sadder still -- and intellectual honesty compels its acknowledgment -- the victims are not entirely blameless; Louisiana is thoroughly complicit in putting the sign there in the first place.

But just because a woman goes "commando" in a short skirt with a skimpy top, it doesn't mean she's fair game for the raping. I guess BP's defense will be that Louisiana "asked for it," being that half the politicians are crooks and state regulations are,
shall we say, less than Scandinavian.


BUT THERE'S MORE to the body count in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon explosion and spill -- beyond the 11 souls who never made it off the doomed rig, beyond the murder of a culture and an ecosystem.

After the epic Republican political fail that was Katrina, we're in the agonizing midst of the epic Democratic political fail of this present catastrophe. Democratic strategist James Carville is absolutely right in the above video from
Good Morning America:
“His approval rating should be up seven points right now,” said Carville. “I have no idea why they didn’t seize this thing; I have no idea why the attitude is so hands-off here; it’s just unbelievable.

“I hope he seizes it now because very seldom do you get something that is really good politics and really the right thing to do. Get involved here.”

When host George Stephanopoulos asked Carville what Obama should be doing, in addition to consoling the family members of the 11 workers killed in the explosion, he rambled off a laundry list of suggestions, “He could be commandeering tankers and making BP bring in tankers to clean this up. They could be deploying people to the coast right now. He could be with the Corps of Engineers and Coast Guard with people in Plaquemines Parish doing something about these regulations (for the construction of barrier islands). These people are crying, they are begging for something down here and it just looks like he’s not involved in this.”
REPUBLICANS. DEMOCRATS. They're all the same. Neither of the parties can . . . govern. Neither of them can deal with the nation's severe and ongoing problems, and neither of them can effectively deal with national emergencies when they gain the reins of power.

Both of them are in bed with corporate America, making the country safe for fat cats and dangerous for the ordinary man.

Like Louisiana oystermen and fishermen.

In other words, no we can't "just plug the damn hole":
The government is starting to look powerless. The administration has been pushing BP to move rapidly forward with the so-called “top kill” process — essentially a high-pressure injection of mud and trash to seal off the rupture in the earth. BP says it is working on it, but the effective start date has slipped by over a week. You see, BP has to bring in all the high-tech equipment it was supposed to have stockpiled to do just such a job ... and that takes time. Five weeks so far. We’re told all will be ready to go as I write this, but we’re also told there is only a 60 percent chance it will work. If it doesn’t, BP’s next backup is the drilling of relief wells, which should be completed by August, it says.

More and more Americans are asking why the administration can’t get this under control. Yes, MMS was a mess long before Obama took office. No, the president had nothing to do with the explosion and subsequent disaster. But Americans of all stripes expect their government, and that means President Obama, to take care of problems like this. For five
[weeks] oil has been pumping into the Gulf at the rate of 20- to 70,000 barrels a day — the government can’t even give us a straight number on that. Unless the administration can show some real progress on stopping the hemorrhaging, voters are going to get a message no one in the White House wants them to consider: This is Obama’s well.
AND IT WAS George W. Bush's thoroughly inept and corrupt regulatory infrastructure before that.

Thus, the final corpse after all this is said and oiled may be that of whatever political legitimacy the U.S. government still possesses. What started out as an ecological, economic and cultural crisis likely will end as a political one as Americans -- most particularly in Louisiana -- grapple with the sad reality that the best government corporate America can buy is useless so far as carrying out its constitutionally stated purpose.

So far, the best solution the Republicans and tea partiers can come up with is to, by design, make the government even more ineffective in the jaws of the new millennium. As if trusting the sainted "private sector" has worked out so well for the Gulf Coast.

I look at the picture of the oil-coated, dying brown pelican, and I think of the Louisiana state flag. On it, a mother pelican rips open her chest -- fatally wounding herself -- to feed her young with her own blood.

It is the "holy pelican," an ancient symbol of the Eucharist -- the body and blood of Christ, in the form of bread and wine, by which Christians are fed and receive new life.

Of course, it is beyond the power of Louisiana to live up to the symbolism of its banner. All the state can do -- has done -- is allow its resources to be plundered, its people to be sickened, its environment to be spoiled, its coastline to be eroded . . . and now, its economy and culture to be ravaged just so, somewhere in suburbia, Bobby and Susie's mom can schlep them to soccer practice in a street-legal, gas-guzzling tank.

Unlike that of our Lord and our God, this is a sacrifice without a point. And given the last likely casualty of When Big Business Owns Feckless Government -- confidence in, and the legitimacy of, the American government -- Americans had better get in their gas guzzlers and drive their overprivileged asses to church and give their hearts to Jesus.

Because their asses are about to belong to reality, which, alas, cannot be cheated.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

All out for Uncle Sam

I fell into a virtual library of old Broadcasting yearbooks, and I never surfaced.

Well, OK . . . I just now surfaced.

Anyway, in the 1943 yearbook, I stumbled upon this ad for my hometown radio station, WJBO. In 1943, 'JBO was the only hometown radio station in Baton Rouge.


I NOTE that the WJBO ad touts all the war industry to be found in Red Stick -- much of it involving the petrochemical industry. I don't think it's much of a stretch to say that without Baton Rouge and its refineries and chemical plants, the United States may well have lost World War II.

I likewise note with irony as I contemplate the tepid and feckless federal response to the Gulf oil spill -- and the devastatingly incompetent response to Katrina before that -- that Uncle Sam seems less than anxious to repay what he owes the people of Louisiana.

They should have known better than to rely on the kindness of relatives. It's a "root, hog or die" kind of world now, and Louisiana can't even root for all the crude oil all over everything.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Thwartin' Darwin


Chirp!

Chirp!

Chirp!

Either a sparrow has gotten into the house, or the smoke detector needs a new battery.

I'm betting on the latter.

Get chair to stand on. Remove smoke detector from ceiling. Open battery compartment. Take out old battery.


Curse lawyers for messing with natural selection and
, thus, messing with God's intelligent design of evolution some 6,000 years ago. Sorry . . . I had to alter the content of the blog to get it published in Texas.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Best. Music. Video. Ever. (Today)


A high-school classmate of mine passes along The Best Music Video Ever (Today). I'm sure there will be one just as good tomorrow, but you never know.

Garland Robinette explains it all



In 1949, in the midst of a heated debate on Burma, a Labour member of Parliament famously said of Winston Churchill, "the Right Honourable Member for Woodford thinks that the 'wogs' begin at Calais."

Wogs?

From the Wiktionary:
wog (plural wogs)

1. (British, slang, pejorative) Any dark-skinned person. Most commonly used to refer to people of Indian, North African, Mediterranean, or Middle Eastern ancestry.

2. (Australian, slang, pejorative) A person of Southern European, Mediterranean (especially Italian, Lebanese, and Greek people), or Middle Eastern ancestry or in some cases, Eastern European ancestry (c.f. wop).
AS WE SPAN 60-plus years and an ocean, coming to rest in 2010 in an enterprise I'll call America 2.0, it's pretty obvious that the "wogs" begin somewhere around Front Royal, Va.

And it doesn't get any "woggier" than my homeland, the Gret Stet of Louisiana, and the treatment meted out by the gummint and "da industry" has pretty much been commensurate with that status. Not that the wogs understood that, especially.

There is such a thing, however, as "an oil spill too far," to adapt a saying to present circumstances. And the wogs are figuring out that they're . . .
wogs.

Friday on his WWL radio program, Garland Robinette articulated this realization brilliantly to New Orleans and the world. With this knowledge now ringing in the ears of ordinary Louisianians,
pray God, there just might be hell to pay.

Don't bite the hand that . . . strangles you?

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


"What I don't like from the president's administration is this sort of, 'I'll put my boot heel on the throat of BP.' I think that sounds really un-American in his criticism of business. . . .

"And I think it's part of this sort of blame-game society in the sense that it's always got to be somebody's fault instead of the fact that maybe sometimes accidents happen."


Accidents will happen? Oops.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


"What I don't like from the president's administration is this sort of, 'I'll put my boot heel on the throat of BP.' I think that sounds really un-American in his criticism of business. . . .

"And I think it's part of this sort of blame-game society in the sense that it's always got to be somebody's fault instead of the fact that maybe sometimes accidents happen."


Friday, May 21, 2010

3 Chords & the Truth: The guitar (and stuff) man


Well, yeah, David Gates is the Guitar Man, but I got a few here on 3 Chords & the Truth, too.

And if you're interested, we got some horns and pianos, too. Want a bass? A violin?

HELL, this week, we even have some accordions, too. Because diversity and unparalleled selection are the hallmarks of the Big Show. It's all good, and it's all just a click away.

Two clicks, tops.

Anything else you need to know about this week's program? I didn't think so.

It's 3 Chords & the Truth, y'all. Be there. Aloha.


A-hole ideologue of the universe


"What I don't like from the president's administration is this sort of, 'I'll put my boot heel on the throat of BP,'" Rand [Paul] said in an interview with ABC's "Good Morning America." ''I think that sounds really un-American in his criticism of business."

Paul appeared two days after a landslide primary victory over the Republican establishment's candidate, Trey Grayson. He had spent most of the time since his win laboring to explain remarks suggesting businesses be allowed to deny service to blacks without fear of federal interference. On Friday said he wouldn't seek to repeal civil rights legislation.

On the oil spill, Paul, a libertarian and tea party darling, said he had heard nothing from BP indicating it wouldn't pay for the spill that threatens devastating environmental damage along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico.

"And I think it's part of this sort of blame-game society in the sense that it's always got to be somebody's fault instead of the fact that maybe sometimes accidents happen," Paul said.

The senate candidate referred to a Kentucky coal mine accident that killed two men, saying he had met with the families and he admired the coal miners' courage.

"We had a mining accident that was very tragic. ... Then we come in and it's always someone's fault. Maybe sometimes accidents happen," he said.


Thursday, May 20, 2010

Trad media's murder machine


Dear traditional media:

Wondering where all your advertising went?
I think I just found it.

Here's the new advertising formula: Make a catchy video. Put it on
YouTube. Wait for it to go viral.

The Coca-Cola "Happiness Machine" video has attracted almost 2.3 million viewers so far. The only cost was that of producing it.

It's a new world, traditional media.
You may not be part of it.


HAT TIP: Inside Music Media.

Teach your children well


Lincoln East really is a piece of work.

Only spoiled, suburban white people could smear Omaha South as basically a bunch of "wetbacks," then make the spectacle all about themselves and how terribly enlightened they're being in, as a student said on TV today, "repairing ties with Omaha South and the Latino community."

Uh . . .
what ties?

AND NOW THIS, courtesy of the Omaha World-Herald, from the coach of Lincoln East's soccer team. Get ready for a big "OY VEH!" by the time you reach the end:
Lincoln East Coach Jeff Hoham issued a statement Thursday and sent a letter to Omaha South Coach Joe Maass regarding the “green card'' incident after the state boys soccer championship game.

Hoham apologized for fans' misbehavior in throwing homemade green cards after East defeated South Tuesday night.

And he said he was not talking about the cards when he told Maass after the incident, “Fans do silly things. . . . Make sure your kids know it wasn't intentional.”

Hoham said he was referring to East fans' running onto the field and to East players' penalties when he made the remarks, according to the statement.

“In several media reports, it would appear that I was not concerned about the actions related to the display of green cards,” Hoham said in the statement, issued by the Lincoln Public Schools.

“In reality, my comments were in reference to something totally different. After the game, I was attempting to apologize for our fans running onto the field, and for my players' penalties during the game.

“I wasn't aware at the time of the events that had transpired with the horrible racist act of fans throwing green cards on the field.

“Please know that those comments do not reflect my thoughts regarding the green card incident, as I deplore racism at any level. Prejudice based on stereotypes is always intentional, and I certainly didn't mean to state that it was unintentional.”
IT WOULD SEEM that -- as he sat at the keyboard lying through his teeth to cover his ass -- Coach forgot that reporters witnessed the postgame exchange. This is known as the public-relations equivalent of "Hey, y'all! Watch THIS!"

These things never end well.
After being approached on the field by reporters and asked about the green cards, Maass walked from South's celebration over to where Hoham was standing with his team. Maass said the two had already shaken hands after the game.

With reporters watching, Maass brought up two things with Hoham — how East fans were waving U.S. flags, and the green cards that had been thrown on the field. Maass asked Hoham what he thought about that.

Maass turned and began walking away when Hoham said fans do silly things. Hoham said, “Make sure your kids know it wasn't intentional.”

Maas looked over his shoulder and said, “It never is,” and kept walking.

In his prepared statement, Hoham wrote, “When events like this despicable act occur, it is hard to deal with them, and often painful for us to reflect. However, I believe that a greater good can come from what we all learn from this experience. We can raise our awareness of what stereotyping and discrimination does when it goes unchecked, and we can work actively together to prevent it in the future.”
ALL TOGETHER NOW . . . "Oy veh!"

See, it's all about the perps, never the victims. That's the American Way . . . at least when the perps are privileged perps.

It's hard to be from the offending school. It's painful to reflect upon the really, really bad s*** we did. We can raise our awareness.

Boo f***ing hoo. It hurts to be exposed as an a-hole. I'll alert the media.

Oh, wait. Lincoln East already did.

I LOVE how East is "taking ownership" of this, just so long as "taking ownership" doesn't really involve, you know . . . taking ownership.

As I said Wednesday, they say it takes a village to raise a child -- or a high school. And in this case, Lincoln East's village sucked.

With the "stellar" example put forth today by Coach
Hoham, the long-range forecast for the Lincoln East community calls for a close race between bullshit and chickenshit, with chickenshit winning by the width of a green card.

When nuts vote as a bloc. . . .

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


Can we agree that basing an entire political "movement" on the mere fact that you're pissed is a supremely bad idea, and is likely to end with voters doing supremely stupid things?

Exhibit A is what happened Tuesday, when tea-party Republican voters sent Ron Paul's baby libertarian boy to the general election for U.S. Senate. As we all know, Satan is a libertarian, and it was probably him who told Rand Paul
(Nut-Ky.) that there's a problem with the Civil Rights Act.

Thus, we have the spectacle of Paul telling Rachel Maddow that he hates racism, that segregation is wrong, but the federal government still has no business telling private businesses they cannot refuse, for example, to serve African-Americans.


THE THING IS, while Bubba's Lunch Counter is indeed a "private business," so is Exxon.

And if Exxon doesn't have to serve you, Exxon doesn't have to hire you. either. Neither does anybody except for -- at least one presumes in the weird, weird world of Rand Paul -- government agencies.



RAND PAUL can wrap himself in the First Amendment all he wants -- just as he can lament the all-powerful state's assault on liberty all he wants -- but despite all his protestations about how much he hates discrimination and racism, he's still in bed with people like those above.

See, the red necks and dark hearts of Poolesville, Md., in 1956 really wouldn't have cared much whether Rand Paul personally was a "nigger lover," just so long as he preserved their right to discriminate against them with impunity. Libertarian Satan would have been so proud.

When the subject is abortion, we know when a politician is trying to have it both ways -- he starts waxing eloquent about how he's personally opposed to abortion, but. . . . This is called, if one is feeling charitable, wanting to feel right without actually having to do right.

On his campaign website, Paul says he's "100% pro life." Or would that be 100-percent pro-life, except when a woman goes to a private abortion clinic, because God forbid the state infringe on the rights of private businesses?

After all, "we tolerate boorish and uncivilized behavior because that's one of the things freedom requires is that we allow people to be boorish and uncivilized. . . ."

They hang genocidal maniacs, don't they?


Well, this should be just about it for my home state, Louisiana.

You just don't get this stuff out of the marsh. And this stuff -- crude oil, courtesy of BP -- will kill the marsh, and what's in it.

And then it all will erode away, and whole stretches of coastline will sink into the Gulf of Mexico.



GOODBYE, fishing industry. Goodbye coastline. Goodbye to what's left of the last protection New Orleans and other coastal cities have from the sea -- and the hurricanes that roll in off of it.

Goodbye to a massive chunk of the Louisiana economy. Goodbye not only to people's livelihoods, but also to their way of life. What their daddies did, and their granddaddies did, and their great- and great-great-granddaddies did before that, they no longer will do.

Does the U.S. code cover murder of an economy? Cultural genocide?

Look at these photos from National Geographic. Can executives of BP, Halliburton and Transocean be rounded up and put on trial at The Hague?

I know, when pigs fly. At least in this day and age.

BUT AS WE WAIT for porkers to get airborne . . . as a matter of financial expediency for whatever cleanup is possible in this catastrophic mess, can President Obama at least invoke whatever emergency powers are necessary to immediately seize every U.S. asset of every company responsible here?

Justice demands it. And God knows we are going to need the cash.