Monday, July 28, 2008

A must for all Bruce fans!

A couple of months ago I ran across a fairly new blog about Springsteen and his music, but one with a definite twist. Soul Boogie Alex has created Boss Tracks and I cannot recommend it highly enough.

What makes Alex's blog different is that it focuses on two unusual aspects of the Springsteen fan experience. First, he gives background in amazing detail of the cover songs Bruce has done through his career, usually posting both an MP3 of the original and an MP3 of a Bruce cover version from one of the bootlegs. Second, for those of us who collect bootleg Springsteen recordings, Alex gives us detailed reviews of both old and new releases. While we disagree on which era of Springsteen's career might have been the best (Alex leans toward the Born to Run tour, while I tend to prefer the Darkness tour recordings), the reviews are invaluable to a collector -- especially one like me who wants to own every great bootleg release, but not necessarily every release.

To steal from Stephen Colbert, I send a "Tip of my hat" to Alex and urge all you Springsteen fans to check out Boss Tracks. You'll find it well worth your time!

With that said, here's a new Bruce video for you -- "Mary's Place" from the July 19, 2008 show at Camp Nou in Barcelona. It doesn't have great sound quality, but it definitely captures the experience of seeing a great live Bruce performance. Hope you enjoy it!!

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy Birthday, USA!

Hello, I'm back again after a considerable absence while looking for work. Let me tell you, this economy really sucks -- especially trying to find a job where I reside. Oh well, enough of that...on to more important things.

First, today's video is from July 1988, a rousing version of Born In The U.S.A. performed in East Berlin. It seemed appropriate, especially since Bruce opened his show in Gothenburg, Sweden, today with the song. I looked for a full clip of that but couldn't find it -- but this is an great substitution (and check out the audience and their participation)!

Next, it's time for me to express my intense disapproval of Barack Obama's decision to support the "compromise" FISA bill. When I use the term "compromise" it should actually read "Democratic capitulation to the lame-duck Bush administration and fear-mongering Republicans." Don't get me wrong, I'm still supporting Obama -- but this stance seems antithetical to everything I've thought the man was standing for and it pisses me off to no end. I know that a Dem has to move to the center to a degree to have any chance of winning in the general election, but this abandonment of the Constitution by a Constitutional Law professor in order to draw some "moderates" is wrong, no matter how you look at it. Come back Barack from wherever it is you've gone -- we need the guy who got me to overcome my cynicism and believe in hope again, not the one caving into the Repubs for fear of looking weak on terror.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

I just realized I can say anything I want to


I wont say im sorry any more

was talking about the day JFK died today. I knew who Republicans were in the 3rd grade. I've met some of them as the years have past. Very few of them are veterans All the crap aside brothers, (i read because you fight for change) lets take a breath and say no. Lets ask what McCaine has done. Ifeel for you folks who grew up with Ray Gun. Just about everything you accept as norm was paid for in blood under Johnson and Nixon. Ronnie was a pimp. As men and women who have killed for our nation why don't we have the right to demand that every leader who sends a generation to war (yep 5 fookin years of war) expend every last effort to talk?

Anti War Pro War

Lets do a day of peace. Let every veteran on this planet stand up one day and say peace.


Pick a date before the election in the US.

EVERY VET IN THIS NATION STANDS UP AND SAYS PEACE. Do you think it might create a situation of neutrality? Nah thats not possible.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

If this doesn't piss you off.....

I just read this in today's New York Times, and I can't even describe how angry it makes me. Every time I think about the callow attitude this administration and its corporate butt-buddies display with their gaudy no-bid contracts and shoddy (at best) work, it, to quote Billy Jack, "just makes me go berserk!"

Check this out:

"One electrician warned his KBR bosses in his 2005 letter of resignation that unsafe electrical work was “a disaster waiting to happen.” Another said he witnessed an American soldier in Afghanistan receiving a potentially lethal shock. A third provided e-mail messages and other documents showing that he had complained to KBR and the government that logs were created to make it appear that nonexistent electrical safety systems were properly functioning."

Naturally, KBR denies any fault:
For its part, KBR, which until last year was known as Kellogg, Brown and Root and was a subsidiary of Halliburton, denied that any lapses by the company had led to the electrocutions of American soldiers. “KBR’s commitment to employee safety and the safety of those the company serves is unwavering,” said a spokeswoman, Heather Browne. “KBR has found no evidence of a link between the work it has been tasked to perform and the reported electrocutions.”

Ms. Browne declined to respond to the specific accounts of former KBR electricians.

I swear, the more I think about it, the more I feel that Bush, Cheney and the CEOs of Halliburton and KBR need to face their day in front of a jury of their peers. Actually, that may not be possible. It will be exceedingly difficult to find and get together 12 people as stupid, dishonest and contemptible as these people. And just think, if John McCain gets elected our servicemen and women can look forward to at least four more years of this kind of treatment.

With that in mind, here's today's Bruce video -- from Belfast, recorded last December 15:

Friday, May 2, 2008

A Sad Month

Well, it was confirmed yesterday. 52 U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq last month, the worst month since last September. Almost a trillion and a half dollars wasted, well over 25,000 wounded, and there's no way to count how many innocent Iraqis have died, all so that the shrub, Darth Vader, the idiots Rumsfeld, Feith, Wolfowitz, etc. could make buttloads of money for their corporate buddies.

I can't even describe how ill this makes me feel.

I also haven't written about the fact that Phantom Dan Federici passed away on April 20. My first experience seeing Bruce was seeing Danny wail away on the accordion as the show opened with Wild Billy's Circus Story. So here's Devil's Arcade from Chicago last October, with a haunting job by Dan.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Who'll be the last to die....

On the Magic album, Bruce asks John Kerry's question, "Who'll be the last to die for a mistake?" Well, I took the time to look up the answer. The last U.S. soldier to die in the mistake called Vietnam was PFC Kelton Rena Turner, an 18-year old Marine. He was killed in action on May 15, 1975, two weeks after the evacuation of Saigon, in what became known as the Mayaguez incident. His remains were identified on May 17, 2000.

Others list Gary L. Hall, Joseph N. Hargrove and Danny G. Marshall as the last to die in Vietnam. These three US Marines Corps veterans were mistakenly left behind on Koh Tang Island during the Mayaguez incident. They were last seen together but unfortunately to date, their fate is unknown.

I promised Peace Vet a couple of weeks ago that I would look this up and I've been remiss. I apologize. However, I note that the anniversary date is coming up soon and I think that this is a name we should all remember. In remembrance of PFC Turner and 4036 (as of April 18) U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq thus far, along with 308 coalition troops, and another 29,780 soldiers wounded -- not to mention countless Iraqis -- I offer this video of Bruce doing "Last to Die," recorded in Milan last November.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Another Kristol Klear prediction

I have to love Bill Kristol of the Weekly Standard and (inexplicably) the New York Times. I look forward now to Monday mornings since the Times added him to their op-ed page (I'm assuming it's due to some repressed comedic sensibility that the grey lady has heretofore kept well hidden). Today's column in the Times shows off our man Bill's brilliance at reading politics once again. A little excerpt, for your delectation:

Perhaps the most obvious way McCain could upend the normal dynamics of this year’s election would be a bold vice presidential choice. He could pick a hawkish and principled Democrat like Joe Lieberman....He could persuade the most impressive conservative in American public life, Clarence Thomas, to join the ticket.

Does Kristol really think that McCain could get even one Democratic voter with Lieberman or Thomas on the ticket? Seriously, this guy has been smoking some very serious skunkweed.....

Thanks, Sam

"Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it."
-- Mark Twain

Sunday, March 9, 2008

A breath of fresh air in Illinois

One of my best friends lives up in DeKalb, IL. Now my buddy is not the most politically astute person in the world, but ever since he attended my college graduation (from Knox College, the most underrated college in the country) and heard Barack Obama give the 2005 commencement address, he's started to pay a little bit of attention. I think there's a chance that he might actually vote this year, and it will be for Obama. Now here's the good news in his neck of the woods: apparently, everyone is starting to hate Republicans. If my buddy's thinking about voting for Obama in Denny Hastert's old district, the same district that just voted in a Democrat, then indeed the times they're a changin'. And this can't be good for the GOP or the McCain campaign -- not that he stands a chance in Illinois anyway, especially if Obama gets the Dem nomination.

Sunday Springsteen and Steinbeck

Over at Crooks and Liars (one of my favorite blogs), bluegal posted a clip from The Grapes of Wrath to start an open thread, so naturally I thought about this song. By the way, can't wait to get together with Peace Vet in Seattle for a couple of Bruce shows and some baseball!

Monday, February 25, 2008

The real Saturday radio address

I just came across this great diary from BarbinMD over at the Daily Kos. I have to tell you, if I weren't so busy laughing then I would surely be weeping. My favorite is this: "Without protection from lawsuits, [private companies will be increasingly unwilling to take the risk of helping us with vital intelligence activities] impeachment might be back on the table when Joe and Jane Six-Pack find out my administration has been spying on them."

Check it out, and please let me know your thoughts.

Video of the day

This clip is a pretty good example of what made me such an over-the-top Springsteen fan all those years ago. It's from a concert in Passaic, N.J. in September 1978. Enjoy.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

The Nexus of Terror and Politics

I urge everyone to see this piece that Keith Olbermann ran on Countdown last Thursday. I've been aware of this confluence for a long time, but to see everything connected in such a succinct manner as Keith and his producers have done simply staggers the imagination. A novelist could not get this published, it is so ridiculous.

I warn you, it tracks in a little long at just over sixteen minutes, but it's well worth your time. If it were up to me, this would be required viewing in every high school government or history class in the country.

Thank you American people for electing these idiots, crooks and liars to two terms. As Winston Churchill said, the best argument against democracy is a five minute conversation with the average voter.

The FISA Follies roll on

Once again, Glenn Greenwald at Salon gets to the bottom of what's really going with the expiration of the Protect America Act (PAA). Namely, that while the administration and Republicans in Congress (along with quite a few DINOs) cry wolf about terrorists already benefitting from the expiration of the act, they are the ones who forced the expiration. I believe the word is chutzpah.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Cindy McCain's pride in America

Perhaps it shouldn't surprise me that Cindy McCain was so quick to jump on Michelle Obama's comment about being, for the first time in her life, really proud to be an American. Cindy has every reason to be proud. For example, in America only a rich Senator's wife can manage to hire attorneys like John Dowd to avoid a drug prosecution.

Cindy McCain's drug history

Maybe it's time the mainstream media takes a closer look at this loving couple. McCain was involved in the Keating Five Savings and Loan scandal in the late 80s, and now it's apparent that his wife has had a few problems of her own along the way.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Another loss for the Bill of Rights

The cowards in the Senate once more gave in to a lame duck President today, voting 68-29 to grant ridiculous spying powers to a President who doesn't give a damn about our Constitution. The bill also gives immunity to the telecom companies who without a doubt broke the FISA laws by allowing illegal wiretaps on American citizens.

In all my years of study, I can't find an instance where the American people rolled over for an authoritarian government the way we've rolled over for everything Bush and Cheney insist upon. The saddest thing is that most people don't even seem to realize what's being done to them in the name of fear and national security.

Jay Rockefeller and Joe Lieberman, along with every other Senator who voted for this bill, should be ashamed of themselves. How much are we willing to put up with from people who supposedly represent us, the citizens whom the Constitution and Bill of Rights is supposed to protect?

I'm telling you, if the Democrats somehow manage to lose the election this year, then the America I in which I grew up and for which I served in the Armed Forces will be in serious danger of disappearing.

UPDATE: See this post by Glenn Greenwald in Salon for a thorough explanation of just exactly how wrong this is for our country.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Why I'm supporting Barack Obama

I voted in the Arizona primary this week, and my vote went to Barack Obama. There are several reasons why I'm supporting him, but one in particular stands head and shoulders above all the others: he spoke against the war when it was an act of political courage to do so, and she voted for it.

My problem with Senator Clinton isn't just that she voted for the war -- a sizable number of Democratic senators did (Dodd, Edwards, Daschle, etc). My problem is that she still refuses to admit that it was a mistake. The others did.

The present idiot-in-chief has consistently proven that he cannot admit a mistake. The last thing I want to see is another President with that same character flaw.

Don't get me wrong. Come the general election, I'll vote for the Democratic nominee, whether it be Obama or Clinton. I don't think our Constitution and government can stand four more years of Republican rule. And after watching John McCain as my Senator for over twenty years, you couldn't pay me enough money to vote for him. So I'll do anything I can to see a Democrat get elected and to see that they increase their majorities in each house. However, if the nominee is Obama, it will be a lot easier to be enthusiastic about my support.

Why is impeachment off the table?

The more I think about it, the angrier I become. The FISA scandal alone seems to be to be solid ground for impeachment, without even looking at little things such as lying us into a war, politicizing the justice department, torturing people in contravention of U.S. and international law, etc....

Isn't it obvious to everyone that the only reason the Bush administration could possibly have for insisting on amnesty for the telecom companies is that they broke the law -- at his behest? This seems like such a no-brainer to me. I can't understand why Pelosi won't listen to people like Robert Wexler who insist that, at the very least, it's time for an investigation into the wrongdoings of the Bush/Cheney crime family. Let's face it, the Corleones had nothing on these people when it came to breaking the law and not getting caught or paying any consequences.

Unfortunately, my representative is the (dis)honorable Trent Frank, who has not even bothered to respond to my barrage of emails and letters urging him to look out for the Constitution rather than for his pork barrel buddies, and my communications with Rep. Pelosi have been similarly to no avail. However, if any of you have a rep who doesn't have his nose stuck all the way up the shrub's behind, please contact them and demand explanations for their dereliction of duty. After all, their oath is to the constitution -- not the President.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Hey Don!!!!!!!!!!

Give me a freakin call.

Hey Don!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, February 1, 2008

So why the hell is he a hero?

He got shot down and taken prisoner. He knew the Gulf Of Tonkin was a BS story. (he was there) If the people who are going to vote for him had their way he'd still be in the Hilton.

Whats his name?

Monday, January 28, 2008

MisState of the Union

Well, that was, at the very least, a completely uninspirational SOTU address. It seemed to me to be a laundry list of the the last seven years -- war on terror (we're winning and it's the ideological struggle of this century); Congress ineffectual (damned Democrats, won't give me everything I want for my rich cronies); entitlement programs that must be fixed (privatize SS & Medicare now! Do you hear me?); and so on and so on, ad infinitum.

Why can't a lame duck President at least make a transparent attempt to reach out, not only across the aisle, but to all Americans who want to be inspired by our leaders? Is this guy's ego really so fragile that he is psychologically unable to at least make an effort, especially when his party looks as if it's falling into an abyss heading into this election?

Perhaps Presidents should be forced to undergo serious psychiatric analysis while in office -- in this case, it certainly couldn't have hurt.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Yeah Im back

Every day

I dont understand

Why I'm considered the idealist. I want a peaceful world. Those assholes want to destroy it. I want all people to live fed, clothed. and housed. Those assholes suck the lifeblood from us and send our children to kill and die in their fucking wars.

They should be branded the idealists for expecting us in this day and age to believe their bull shit.

But no. We watch the wanna be idiots ridicule each other so we'll pick one..

Don't know about you but they can all kiss my ass.