Pulp Fiction Thursday: Nightmare

Sometimes my PFT picks are driven by the title or author. This time it’s the image and overall cover design. Those blank eyes and eerie shadows are downright creepy. They make me want to hide under the bed, but first I’d have to move Oscar and Della out of the way. They wouldn’t go quietly either. Della doesn’t do anything quietly.


Malaka Of The Week: Strange Fruit PR

The news is bleak this week, so I thought I’d discuss a rare instance where the Tweeter Tube triumphed over inadvertent, but hilariously inept, malakatude.  Besides, my old friend Ricardo suggested it and, like a Top 40 DJ, I take requests. And that is why the Strange Fruit PR firm out of Austin, Texas is malaka of the week.

While it’s not surprising that Austin hipsters wouldn’t know about the classic anti-lynching song Strange Fruit, it *is* surprising that they didn’t use the google to check out their name. It doesn’t exactly make me want to hire them since PR peeps are supposed to be social media and internet savvy. Oops.

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Album Cover Art Wednesday: Ogdens’ Nut Gone Flake

It’s time for another wee tribute to the late Ian McLagan and his marvelous band, Small Faces. They were a short-lived but very influential combo that gave us two of the best live bands of the 1970’s: The Faces and Humble Pie with Steve Marriott and Peter Frampton. It’s an impressive family tree that also includes the Rolling Stones, the Jeff Beck Group, and The Who.

Ogdens’ Nut Gone Flake was the band’s 1968 concept album. It was either obligatory or mandatory for a Sixties band to do one, and it’s a good one.  The original packaging was amazing:

The album was originally released on vinyl in a circular novelty package of a metal replica of a giant tobacco tin, inside which was a poster created with 5 connected paper circles with pictures of the band members. This proved too expensive and was quickly followed by a paper/card replica with a gatefold cover. Two limited-edition CD releases (including a three-disc deluxe edition in 2006 that included the original mono mix of the album on CD for the first time) went even further by packaging the disc(s) in a circular tin (as the original vinyl release had). Most CD releases use conventional packaging, superimposing the circular artwork on a square booklet.

The award-winning artwork for the album cover was done by Nick Tweddell and Pete Brown, who were art school friends of Ian McLagan and who had also played in a band with Ian called The Muleskinners.

The tobacco tin and LP title were inspired by a Liverpudlian tobacco brand. I could have said Liverpool based, but I love saying Liverpudlian. Without further adieu, here’s the cover:



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Dennis Rodman Isn’t An Assignment Editor

He’s not the problem here: 

Dennis Rodman is a troll. Before dedicating any more thought to his opinions and politics than you would to those of a subway evangelist, remember that. But that doesn’t stop him from being run out on TV and in interviews as an expert in North Korean affairs or racial politics in America. He may just as well start trading stock tips and forecasting weather patterns, because he knows exactly as much about those topics as he does about anything he’s actually asked to speak on with authority.

Which should preclude him from being asked to speak. Who’s doing the asking? How did their heads get so far up their asses? I will admit to as much of a sick fascination with Rodman as anyone else, mostly because I had just arrived in Chicago when his actual basketball fame was at its height, and he was the weirdest thing my Wisconsin self had ever seen.

But he’s not in charge of his media access. MEDIA are, and the bookers and producers who are putting Rodman on TV are to blame for him being on TV. It’s ridiculous to castigate Dennis Rodman for being who he is, doing what he wants, and feeding himself and his family any way he can. It requires us to pretend news judgment doesn’t exist, and Rodman appears on our televisions by magic, willed there by our supposed interest in him.

Crazy, trolly people have existed in sports and public life since time immemorial. It’s just that once upon a time maybe we thought it was possible to ignore them. Just don’t respond to their press releases, Don’t return their phone calls. Refuse to ask them any questions. Act like they don’t exist.

(You know, like you do everybody who thought the Iraq War was bullshit, bank bailouts were immoral, and raising the minimum wage isn’t tantamount to setting the polo ponies of the wealthy on fire.)


Grossest Response to the Release of the Torture Report

What is “Politico bending over backwards (or maybe forward) to let Bush off the hook,” Alex? 

The Senate Intelligence Committee report finds that the “Enhanced Interrogation Techniques” program escaped effective scrutiny by outsiders long after its inception in 2002, with CIA records showing that President George W. Bush was never briefed by the agency on specific techniques such as waterboarding until 2006. Top Bush administration officials such as Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Secretary of State Colin Powell were not told of the practices until September 2003.

AFTER WHICH THEY KEPT FUCKING DOING IT. And if Rumsfeld found out in 2003, and Powell, why the fuck didn’t one of them tell Bush? I’m sorry, but how exactly does this exonerate Bush again?

Yet their headline is about how Bush was misled, because Republicans can never fail. They can only be failed by their underlings, who kept them in the dark. I’m sorry, how does this make it BETTER? If as president you are so dimly lit that your administration can torture people without telling you about it, I’m sorry, you don’t get a pass for what you decided not to know about.

Bush wrote in his memoirs that he knew about the enhanced interrogation program since 2002 and fully supported and approved it. But former CIA Directors George Tenet and Porter Goss told CIA investigators that Bush was not briefed by the agency about the interrogation techniques until 2006.

Again, after which, IT KEPT GOING ON.

Our current president is tired:

For his part, Obama was silent on the issues of whether the CIA misled outsiders about the program and about whether it produced important intelligence but he emphasized that he banned the harsh techniques soon after he took office.

“Rather than another reason to refight old arguments, I hope that today’s report can help us leave these techniques where they belong — in the past,” Obama said in the White House statement.

Right. That’s all that’s at stake here. Old arguments. We don’t want to have old arguments.

Actually, I don’t want to have old arguments. I WANT TO IMPRISON SOME GODDAMN PEOPLE, and I don’t care if it makes the cocktail parties fucking rough this Christmas.

You know what? You want the right to leave this shit in the past? You want to make sure everybody gets along and nobody has to face any consequences and not hold anybody accountable and not worry about anything? THEN GO THE FUCK HOME. Don’t be in government. Don’t be in Congress. Take a nap and watch TV. No one will judge you. But you do not get to sit in the chair and act like it’s all just too rough.



Let Me Check Something

Last week we learned that we can — nay, SHOULD — summarily execute black men for being suspected of robbing convenience stores or selling loose cigarettes, but white men should not be kicked out of college for raping women because one woman might not have remembered every single thing about a trauma correctly.

Is that about where we’re at right now?

ETA: Also, we cannot punish our own politicians for ordering torture and lying about it. Because rude. 

At least we’ll be REALLY on top of the critical law enforcement issue of the day: smoking.


‘You knew everybody, everybody knew you’

All about the music: 

Roberts, now 90 years old, is a survivor of an era when racial segregation operated with much more explicit official sanction than it does today, and penetrated even further into daily life. Even the most crossover-minded black superstar might be required to play in a venue where blacks weren’t allowed or, at best, were forced to sit in the rear of the club. (The last Jim Crow laws in the States weren’t overturned until 1965.) Roberts provided a nonsegregated venue for black entertainers, with a classy ambience—and beginning in 1960, when he opened the first of his six motels nearby, he also gave them a place to stay. First-class hotels often refused black guests, and previously Roberts often had to put up his performers in houses or apartments.

Go read the whole thing, as the kids say.



The Age Of Irrationality

I was originally going to write a post-mortem of Saturday’s result and call it Requiem for a Blue Dog, but some exchanges with fellow Gret Stet progressives on Facebook led me to change my focus and write this long ass sentence. I really hope none of you lot diagram that sentence or I’ll be up shit creek without a paddle…

Before I get all cosmic and shit, a few words about Senator Mary Landrieu. I’ve openly expressed my frustration with her but I’m a liberal who wants to get shit done and that’s something she’s good at. In the post-Katrina/Federal Flood era she worked tirelessly (a cliche but appropriate in this case) to make sure Louisiana got our fair share of relief money. She spent a lot of time doing battle with the Republican controlled Congress and White House and wasn’t afraid to get in their proverbial faces. She did it well and it’s one reason I will always have a fondness for her despite her pipeline posturing. I have one friend who is threatening to leave Louisiana in the broad daylight because she thinks we’re fucked if another big storm hits. She may well be right. While I’m not leaving New Orleans, I don’t share my friend Stephanie Grace’s hope that Double Bill Cassidybot will have the Ed Balls to stand up to anyone:

What will be interesting to see is what happens when the state’s interests clash with Republican priorities. Landrieu undeniably delivered for Louisiana, whether that meant carving out a portion of offshore oil royalties and BP fines or landing hurricane aid. Cassidy says he’ll do the same, and hopefully that’s true. But given the GOP’s attitude toward spending, there may be situations where advocating for the state means bucking his own party.

Double Bill is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Koch Brothers and, even worse, David Vitter. Until proven otherwise, he’s a cipher who will do what he’s told. The *real* winner of Saturday’s election was Bitter Vitter:

Louisiana’s soon-to-be senior senator is now the undisputed kingpin of the state GOP, and his microphone-grab at Cassidy headquarters on Election Night drove home that point. Vitter was the architect of Cassidy’s “virtual” campaign against Landrieu. He recruited Cassidy, cleared the field of most other would-be Republican challengers, helped Cassidy raise money and lent one of his top aides to Cassidy as campaign manager. In many ways, Cassidy’s campaign was a trial run for Vitter’s gubernatorial bid next year. It proved (just as Vitter did in his 2010 re-election campaign) that a candidate with lots of money can run for a major statewide office without actually getting out and touching voters in person. That’s good news for a guy who could still be dogged by a sex scandal.

I missed the microphone grab because I was at the top secret Krewe du Vieux Brew Doo, but it shows Vitter’s ability to keep Double Bill in his place. Why shouldn’t he? Cassidy sold his soul to the Louisiana GOP to obtain office to do god only knows what. I have no clue since his campaign boiled down to Landrieu, Obama, 97%, repeat, wash and rinse, and do it again after the break…

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Today on Tommy T’s Obsession with the Freeperati – even more Post-Racial Society edition

Christ on a crutch! I haven’t seen this long and explosive a knee-jerk since the last time a Freeper was caught shooting up a place.

The conflation of the “The niggers are all asking for it” and “Damned jackbooted thugs” posts is making for a more awkward Freeperville situation than seeing your parents’ sex tape pop up in their vacation DVD.

Well, no use putting it off.

Grand Jury Declines to Indict NYPD Officer in Eric Garner Chokehold Death: Sources

www.nbcnewyork.com ^ | Dec 3, 2014 • Updated at 2:28 PM EST | Andrew Siff and Jonathan Dienst

Posted on 12‎/‎3‎/‎2014‎ ‎1‎:‎28‎:‎41‎ ‎PM by dead

A New York City grand jury has declined to indict an NYPD officer in the chokehold case of Eric Garner, the unarmed man who died while being arrested on Staten Island earlier this year.

In opting not to indict, the panel determined there was not probable cause that a crime was committed by NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo, who was seen on a widely watched amateur video showing him wrapping his arm around Garner’s neck as Garner yelled, “I can’t breathe!” during the summer altercation.

1 posted on 12‎/‎3‎/‎2014‎ ‎1‎:‎28‎:‎41‎ ‎PM by dead

Aaand – we’re off!

Comment #5 Removed by Moderator

To: dead

Hands up! Don’t choke!!

4 posted on 12‎/‎3‎/‎2014‎ ‎1‎:‎31‎:‎10‎ ‎PM by bigdaddy45

To: dead

Okay. when do the riots in Manhattan begin?……………

2 posted on 12‎/‎3‎/‎2014‎ ‎1‎:‎30‎:‎37‎ ‎PM by Red Badger (If you compromise with evil, you just get more evil……………………..)

To: dead

When will we hear Bill deBlasio saying “Burn this b——h down!”

18 posted on ‎12‎/‎3‎/‎2014‎ ‎1‎:‎40‎:‎14‎ ‎PM by Bogey78O (We had a good run. Coulda been great still.)

Cock Cop blockers arrival in 5….4….3….2…
To: dead
Unlike Ferguson, this is a case where the officer(s) involved were clearly in the wrong. The video is pretty damning. And, remember that this incident started because Garner was suspected of selling untaxed cigarettes.
10 posted on ‎12‎/‎3‎/‎2014‎ ‎1‎:‎34‎:‎41‎ ‎PM by Conscience of a Conservative
To: Conscience of a Conservative
I agree. I’m pretty shocked that there are no charges at all. A regular jury should have looked at all the facts here, including Garner’s pre-existing health conditions at the officer’s actions.The coroner did conclude it was a homicide and the police officer who choked him should have had to face a jury.Over untaxed loosies!
16 posted on 12‎/‎3‎/‎2014‎ ‎1‎:‎38‎:‎48‎ ‎PM by dead (I’ve got my eye out for Mullah Omar.)
“The Nigger Was Asking For It” contingent (from here on referred to as TNWAFI) rebuts :
To: dead

Oh…dear….will we now see Congressional members of the Congressional Black Caucus laying in the aisles of the House, being held in a chokehold by another Black Racist Congressperson? The problem African-Americans is with you, not law enforcement officers!!!

You folks are now all alone, politically,…in the wilderness…put there by yourselves and your leaders, Obama, Holder, Sharpton, the CBC, the NAACP and the Obamabot Democrat Party!!!

The vast majority of the American people have your number!!! Your criminal lie game….folks is up!!!

24 posted on 12‎/‎3‎/‎2014‎ ‎1‎:‎43‎:‎24‎ ‎PM by JLAGRAYFOX ( My only objective is to defeat and destroy Obama & his Democrat Party, politically!!!.)

Folks is folks.
To: Conscience of a Conservative

The guy was resisting arrest.

25 posted on 12‎/‎3‎/‎2014‎ ‎1‎:‎43‎:‎41‎ ‎PM by dforest

Which is, in some states, a capital offense.
To: dead

I think the cop was very wrong. Whether criminal i do not know. But, the city will need to pay the family. I would be totally upset if this happened to anyone in my family.

31 posted on 12‎/‎3‎/‎2014‎ ‎1‎:‎46‎:‎28‎ ‎PM by therut

Actually, you (and all the TNWAFI fuckheads on this thread) would be suing the P-waddly fuck out of them, if not laying for the killer on the hill across from his home with a sniper rifle.
To: navysealdad
Eric Garner had a long criminal record of over THIRTY criminal arrests and THREE cases pending for the exact same thing cops were questioning him about – selling illegal cigarettes on the corner,I didn’t realize that it was a capital offense.
37 posted on 12‎/‎3‎/‎2014‎ ‎1‎:‎49‎:‎18‎ ‎PM by DoodleDawg
Didn’t I just say that?
More sturm und dung after the totally legal chokehold.

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No One Left to Protect: The Newsroom Thread


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This week, we got just a little bit smaller: 

KENNESAW, Ga. — There will be no mosque in Kennesaw. At least not right away. The Kennesaw City Council voted on Monday to reject the request of a group of Muslims seeking to establish a worship center in the city.

Anti-Islamic demonstrators outside of Kennesaw City Hall made it clear that they believe an Islamic worship center is not welcome in Kennesaw.

The local Islamic group wanting to rent the retail space for their worship center agreed to every limitation that the Kennesaw city attorney wanted to impose, including a two-year only lease, no more than 80 worshipers allowed at a time and no more than 40 parking spaces could be used at a time.

We just get smaller and smaller.

It’s been happening for years, by the way, maybe forever: We take our shoes off in the airport, and go to war based on maybes, and march against health care, and rage against change. We view any acknowledgment of difference, any threadbare recognition of someone who does not work or worship or love or look as we do, with the violent repulsion due an invading virus.

We cut off this piece of ourselves: A 12-year-old boy has a gun, a toy gun, and police shoot him down.

We cut off this piece: A young man walks down a street in the dark, and another man stands his ground.

We cut off this piece: A man might be selling cigarettes, and a cop chokes him to death and watches while he dies.

We cut off this piece: A young man might have robbed a convenience store, and police shoot him to death.

We cut off all these pieces of ourselves. We say, Oh well. We say, he shouldn’t have been there, she shouldn’t have worn that, they shouldn’t act that way. We say, that’s the cost of doing business: Some innocent people get hurt. We say, that’s the price of a free society. We say that we’re a nation under the law, and this is the law, and that’s all we can say. And we get meaner, and more afraid. We get less safe, not more.

We get smaller and smaller. We have less and less room for the unfortunate, the downtrodden, the powerless. We have less and less room for outrage when outrage is called for, let alone when it isn’t.

We make our hearts a bowl of sugar, and say there’s only so much. As if care for others must be rationed, lest we run out, and have nothing left for the war effort.

And in the end, what are we? Some stunted thing, unable to move. What have we gained, by turning those worshippers away? By shutting our doors to the protesters, by closing our ears to the cries of the poor? What do we do now, that we are here, and we are this?


SMV: The Rolling Stones Live At The Hampton Coliseum

The first 12 minutes of this 12/18/1981 video are fascinating. It shows the Stones backstage complete with a massive entourage including some of their chirren. There were two big surprises: Bill Wyman can smile and the band passed around Gatorade before hitting the stage in sweet Virginia.  Less surprising was seeing a nervous Bill Graham trying to organize the chaos.

The show features some stellar sax playing by longtime Stones sideman Bobby Keys who died the other day at the age of 70. Another recently departed member of the 1981 touring band is keyboard player Ian McLaganbest known for his time with the Faces. Ian died earlier this week at the age of 69. This one’s for Bobby and Ian:

I Do Not Mourn The New Republic

Mostly because of shit like this: 

Now the left-leaning weekly has admitted that it was wrong to have backed the war based on the administration’s claims that Saddam Hussein was hiding weapons of mass destruction.

“We feel regret, but no shame. . . . Our strategic rationale for war has collapsed,” says an editorial hammered out after a contentious, 3 1/2-hour editors’ meeting.

“I wanted the editorial to be honest not just about the war and other people’s mistakes but our mistakes,” Editor Peter Beinart says. “We felt we had a responsibility to look in the mirror.”

You know what would have been better than apologizing, Petey? NOT SUPPORTING A WAR THAT LED TO ALL THOSE DEAD PEOPLE, because they don’t care about your fucking feelings, and boring on about your personal growth and how strong you are to consider your own failings is pretty much an invitation to throw rotten fruit at you in the street.

You had a responsibility to look in the mirror? Where was that responsibility when you were writing things like this: 

The unhappy truth is that, if the Bush administration wins the war but betrays the peace, the political consequences for the president will be small. Once the fighting is over, the American press will turn its attention elsewhere, just as it has in post-Taliban Afghanistan. But the consequences for hawkish liberalism will be great. Having been played for fools, most liberal hawks will retreat to a deep skepticism of American power. They will end up on the decent, feckless left–in the company of those who sincerely condemn men such as Slobodan Milosevic and Saddam but have no strategy for toppling them except empty exhortations to people power. And that soft isolationism will likely retake the Democratic Party.

Support Daddy’s fantastic new war or you’ll look like pussies in the long run, fellas. And then nobody will be there to save the peoples of the world from themselves by dropping lots of freedom bombs!

(By the by, the only reason the president’s political consequences were “small” was that THE POLITICAL PRESS OF WHICH YOU ARE A MEMBER decided holding Bush accountable would be awkward and rude. Don’t act like things just happen when it’s your hand on the cookie press, asshole.)

So that’s the magazine I’m supposed to be all aflutter about now becoming just another morass of buzzwords and quizzes, a purveyor of We Supported Triangulating Bullshit and You’ll Never Believe What Happened Next type of stories? Boy, will I miss its historical seriousness and the journalistic guts it took to cheerlead for a war based on nothing. This is a dark day for news indeed.


Weekend Question Thread

What did you want to be when you grew up?

All I ever wanted to be was a writer, which is what makes it terrifying when I’m in a slump, because this is pretty much all I’ve ever had to offer, and if it’s not working I get into a total panic spiral.


AHS Freak Show Thread: No Was An Affront

Twins and Dandy

I missed recapping Test of Strength because my DVR went all wackadoodle and then it was Thanksgiving Eve and there was no new episode. Who among us wouldn’t want to see a horror camp fest on Turkey Day Eve? I guess that’s redundant since many family Thanksgivings are freak shows. In short, I skipped recapping an episode and decided to take a dip in the Blood Bath. Yeah, I know, the picture above is from an earlier episode but I missed the Tattler twins who were in Chicago, that toddling town, consulting with a surgeon. Btw, the post title was a line spoken about spoiled brat Dandy by Ma Mott. The Tattlers definitely said no and lived to tell the tale. For now.

This post contains  more spoilers than a post-Katrina refrigerator, so I’ll resume after the break.

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Friday Ferretblogging: Package of Claire

This is the ferrets’ favorite time of year, when packages are delivered to the house and they can nest in the wrappings:



Friday Catblogging: Crackpot In A Crock Pot Box

We got a new crock pot and Della Street got a new box:

Della Crock Pot Box

Odds & Sods: Show Of Hands Edition

the-who odds--sods

There’s so much going on of late that I decided it was time to get all oddsy and sodsy with you. The bad news is moving at such a breakneck pace that I want to make like the Arctic Monkeys:

Okay, now that I’ve shown I’m not entirely a relic, on with the show this is it:

Show Of Hands: I’ve been impressed that the post-Ferguson protests have such legs as it were. I’m particularly proud of the Rams Five and their dramatic entrance to last Sunday’s game:

Raiders Rams Football

It took a lot of Ed Balls to do this in the conformist world of professional football and there’s been backlash from the St. Louis po-po union, headed up by some boor named Boorda, as well as more malakatude from professional asshole Mike Ditka. He should probably stop saying so much stupid shit or he may well swallow his mustache.

I’m glad the Rams players protested so publicly. Hopefully the owners won’t take it out on them in the future; as for payback from the local heat, there are rumors that the Rams are headed back to Los Angeles where they belong. Or are the Raiders moving back? What’s next? The Cardinals moving back to St Louis? Maybe the NFL will end up with a team in Canton where Bulldogs fans remain livid over losing their team. I made that bit up. Canton hasn’t had an NFL franchise since 1926…

I Can’t Breathe: I don’t shock easily but the grand jury non-decision in the Eric Garner choking case left me gobsmacked by their gobshitery. In some ways, this is more appalling than the Ferguson fiasco. In this instance, there’s video showing the copper applying a chokehold to the guy who was selling loosies. So, someone died for selling cigarettes-instead of from smoking them- and was killed by a cop in violation of NYPD’s own policy. That just ain’t right.

The Garner case has given us yet another example of wingnut hypocrisy. The wingers are horrified by Michael Brown but some are arguing that Garner was a victim of the “nanny state.”  Sometimes I think that wingnuts played football with leather helmets like the Canton Bulldogs…

The only light at the end of the cops killing large black dudes tunnel is that the Justice Department is investigating both the Ferguson and Staten Island cases. As a New Orleanian, all I can is say is: remember the Danziger Bridge case, which was brought by the Feds after the ball was dropped locally.

I have to give the New York Daily News props for this front page:


There’s nothing quite like a tabloid front page to nail a story like this. Well done, youse guys. I almost said y’all but that was too Southern for Noo Yawk.  More nonsensical natterings after da break, y’all/youse…

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It Was 20 30 Years Ago, Um, Actually Yesterday

From Album 5

But who’s counting when, as residents of Bhopal discovered in 1984, you get to experience the marvelous efficiencies of the unfettered free market? No pesky regulations, no pointy headed, tree hugging, bureaucratic, head-in-the-cloud, granola eating, doesn’t-understand-how-the-real-world-works naïf to get in the way of…profits.

Now, justice for the victims of what must have been beyond horrific, a genuine nightmare that turned out to be all too real, well, maybe that’s not quite what it should be…but hey, can’t let that kind of downer get in the way of…freedom…right?

Pulp Fiction Thursday: Spawn Of The Bayou

Sometimes a pulp title just reaches out and grabs me by the Ed Balls. This one certainly did;


It also gave me dueling earworms:


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