David Bowie, and why music no longer influences culture

The problem when old rockers die, and the last two that hit me the hardest were Bowie and Lou Reed,  is that it brings up a ton of feelings in someone, say 57 years old.  Here’s the thing:  there are hundreds, nay thousands of bar acts that count as quality even rebellious rock and roll out there right now, but NONE will have the impact of Bowie or Reed, and NONE who question authority or promulgate an alternative lifestyle hit with the IMPACT on our culture the music once had.

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This has occurred, as all glorious creative times (1950 to 1980, give or take) yield to the new dark age that came upon us in 1980, or just before, and the squelching of truly alarming and monumental creativity has slowly but surely gotten worse.  As electronics, propaganda via ALL MEDIA, and “conservative values” whitewash all fields of a cultural realm (maybe not classical music…)  we are left living in the past (Jedthro Tull) and yearn for more Michael Moores or at least more Ernest Hemingways, and if their contemporary equivalents are out there (where, or who is the NEXT Kurt Vonnegut even?) there’s a good chance they’ve been left unpublished, unheard, unseen due to things like Sony buying Columbia records.  Conservative Japanese guys took the label that brought us Dylan, Springsteen, Simon and Garfunkel and a LOT of other acts that questioned authority and BAM squelched any new ones from hitting it being (by not being signed).

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Throw in a pinch of MTV and a heavy dose of an ass-lick or two (see American Idol or even the Voice) and again,music no longer has the influence to help end a war(Vietnam ended due to an entire generation being inspired by countless anti-war  protest songs).

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Now that Billy Bragg has slowed his US touring schedule and bands like Rage Against the Machine are bundled and tied, name me who is going to replace the cultural icons known as the Beatles, Bob Dylan, Neil Young or a long string of others.

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Here I can go to Cat’s Cradle and 25 other venues to catch a huge sampling of the up and coming bands. Probably 20% have the chops and even the philosophy to challenge my theory that the days of a culture influenced by creative people has died. But can you name me one of these bands? Have you seen them live?  Did you download their stuff?

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Worse yet, other than Kathy Acker and few others, which writers are busting full blast against the wars? OK Chris Hedges (the Pulitzer Prize winner fired from the New York Times) has it going on at http://www.truthout.com. Journalists who persist in investigative reporting are often fired.

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Hell, the movies and tv are a lost cause, and basically (look at all the cop shows on CBS alone!) feed such malicious propaganda (lies) that it makes me want to puke. TV? Who has time for that shit. And I say that in the face of a TON of new great shows…still it doesn’t outweigh the pro war, pro “tough on crime” poop. We’re being transferred into a country where the police are militarized, meaning someone somewhere believes more direct attacks (um police killing unarmed people is a problem that equals the racism behind it) on suspects is A-OK.

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Sprinkle in the icing: The Patriot Act ended Habeas Corpus, the legal belief that people MUST be told WHY they are being arrested, at the time of arrest. This has been in western law since 1215. Yes 1215, when King John was forced to sign the Magna Carta. Before I go off hard on how impossible it is to defend yourself if the cops or anyone else doesn’t tell you why you’re being arrested… wow King George the Bush got this crap passed, and the Supreme Court didn’t bat an eyelash (though it’s extremely unconstitutional) and the Constitutional expert,Barack Obama,also never once brought up overturning this foul law and Patriot Act 2, another insult. Had their been an effective watchdog ANYWHERE, this stuff might not have happened. Rise up young voices; or be squelched forever.

 

To Be Human

is to fall in love over and over,
to never give up on any of them,
to cry for the inhumanity, and try to
overcome all that surrounds us by creating
a closeness with those in proximity, both
geographical and philosophical. It is to
carry those loves in our heart, flooding our
minds no matter how gone they are. And
to put others’ needs first, understand their
flaws, work on our own so we can be
better helpers. It is to take it all in and
follow our dreams no matter how preposterous;
to pull apart another brown paper bag and
to write it all out, no matter how choppy.
So take my hand and make it all better
before I repeat the painful parts until
I can no longer act. To struggle past
obstructions and obligations, self-imposed and
expected; to wallow in joy, build strength and
change what we can for the better. To give.

 

 

 

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Merry Christmas 2, Song 4

Below is in response to “torrito’s blog:

https://toritto.wordpress.com/2015/12/07/sending-ground-troops-to-syria/

 

Propaganda rules. Obama, the lying sack of…is not better than Bush I or II, Clinton or Reagan. All five of these war-mongering apocalyptic puppets of the Military economic complex have: Kept wars going (we’ve attacked foreign countries 91 times since WWII) They also sold out American Labor, rigged the bail out (Regan’s Savings and Loan bail out allowed MASSIVE developers a chance to NEVER repay loans in Colorado and California, and then, once the banks were bailed out –Silverado, where both Jeb and Goerge W. served on the board, etc.– build homes on money once borrowed, then covered by taxpayers and become super filthy rich because they NEVER PAID THE MONEY BACK…was topped by Hank Paulson’s trillions of dollars bailout and the ensuing quantitative easing that has resulted in um, FOUR TIMES as many dollars in the world now as were in existence in 2008.) Oh and Obamas most egregious lie? well that would be running on the concept of cost cutting in health care and bring the troops home rom the Middle East. Again lefties were sucked into voting for him, and he never really got the job of cost cutting done, and spread the middle east war to at LEAST six more countries there.

Which brings us to 2016, global warming aside (ASIDE!?) and even Bernie Sanders would go after ISIS. OH? And Obama wants the Sunnis to fight ISIS. Um, did anyone tell him that ISIS grew from the fact that the US backed Shias in Iraq as Sunnis (see Fallujah) were wiped out. Holy double speak Batman. Are Americans this dumb? The goal is to keep Shia and Sunnis fighting ad infinitum. But most importantly, to create the exact same “Continual War” that Obama railed against in his speech. The last commander in chief to go against this bologna (spelled bullshit) was John F. Kennedy. read “None Dare Call It Conspiracy,” if you like.

I got an eerie feeling driving from NC to FLA and now back again. Something is foul and amiss way beyond all the obvious hoarding and greed of the already-rich. Compare Naples, Florida to St. Petersburg, Florida. Compare the lives of white folks to those murdered by police who aren’t white. Ah, and then comes the peace loving “people of different religions” who are now scaring us just by their presence.

OH it sucks when the poor fight the rich man’s war. History shows that is a BOO BOO. One wonders for how many thousands of years will the families of those already dead in the Middle East will come after us in waves. small and large waves?

I’m not a conspiracy theorist, but a realist and investigative reporter. All the so-called whackos who say this is the end time….well, got any better ideas? Imagine, if you can, the USA losing a war. How large would that war need to be? Right. Ouch. Merry Christmas. Doug

 

And now the Song.

 

Minimalist Drag

The smoke that flows when plants explode and the nuclear tide rolls through

the sad dismay that hits today as the fish turn black and blue

the woman who stare the men who dare know that there’s nothing to do

about the life we lead and the endless greed in the land of the rich, who are few.

The love that turns to shredding BOT without a care for age

is what we watch on the tube in the time of quiet rage.

The bombs that drop from miles above, so our flyboys are safe from the cage

are replaced by drones that are flown back home, it signals the final stage.

fuck the jerks who spread A.I. and who honestly know it can win

Arnold’s terminator was a bad joke but now it’s a sure as a sin.

And sin we do in the age of unrest when the poor are cleaned off in the din

we grab the last can of Pringles, head south to a beach to drink gin

because the last of what was so recently dear is gone: such a terrible toll

as sure as Cowell and MTV put an end to anti-establishment rock and roll.

so hug your girl and go for a whirl and make these days the best on the knoll

because just as sure as math has numbers, it’s gonna be a massive toll.

If the US and China start a duel of petty disputes in the sea

then it could spread (watch out Iran) and the money men will all soon flee

to New Zealand or some other nook like a pole or some place where it’s easy to pee

And the whip will come down, thanks Jagger and RIchards, in the last hours of being free.

Democracy is not the Same as Money

Wen big money controls every aspect of our Federal Government, even the Supreme Court, it is amazing when once in wa while humanity wins decisions.  No, we didn’t win with Citizens United, but the declaration of the legality of gay marriage was a breakthrough, especially when coupled with discrimination laws being interpreted as applicable to landlords who even unknowingly favor one group (say caucasians) of another (African American, Latino, etc.)

OK I would have rather heard that the Supreme Court had banned the Death Penalty rather than rubber stamping lethal injections.

Still, money buys our laws, influences decisions, like the wars we’re still fighting, the debts we can’t ever pay back by now (USA as Greece II?) and the continuation of the ever widening gap between rich and poor.  Let there be no doubt about it, racial problems are not just exacerbated by lack of opportunity but continue the God-awful legacy that preserves the best jobs for us white folks, while putting nearly every one else except well-educated Asians into a permanent box labeled underclass.

It’s bad enough that the dominant countries run around the world stealing natural resources and abusing human resources, but the idea that big big huge huge money should push people around when,(duh) the rich already have obscenely indulgent lives has ruined democracy, and made turning it around to create communities based on love, caring and trust harder and harder to achieve.

We’ve been led down the path of robbing from the poor and middle class in order to feed the rich, and we’ve gone across the globe killing people in order to keep that form of democracy alive and well.  We won’t be judged well at all by history as we kick back, enjoy the 4th of July and cause such insane misery by our own uncontrollable “needs.”