Saturday, May 15, 2010

My Song

Sorry folks, still on the DLtoday, and, rather uncomfortably so.

Last night we went with his younger brother, we thought we go with the elder this evening, Keith Jarrett

A wonderful song, a duo with the great Norwegian saxophonist, Jan Garbarek


Keith Jarrett & Jan Garbarek "My Song"

This Date ... On The Garlic

15 May 2009... On The Garlic


16 May 2008... On The Garlic

It's Time To Bring Down Rollo Tomasi

Garlictorial: Why Wait - Toss Lieberman Over To The GOP Now!

Who Can She Turn To?

15 May 2007... On The Garlic

Cold Body Assoc. Denounces Gonzales For Finger-Pointing, Break In Tradition; "Blaming McNulty At This Point In Time Is Scurrilous"; CBA Membership Upset, Fears Could Be "Open Season" On Scapegoats

15 May 2005... On The Garlic

New Garlic Logo!

Friday, May 14, 2010

The Image of You

Sorry, Garlic Fans, for your absence the past few days.

We ran into a buzz saw of activity, on the homefront.

And, additionally, we have been on the DL, having injured our shoulder (Rotator Cuff issue, at the moment, with a slate of PT on the schedule, the days and weeks ahead), so we just didn't get to spend much time at the ol' computer.

We are aiming to resume posting this weekend.

Which puts a bit of pressure on us.

What music do we leave you with, something to make up for the lack of posting, something that will have you sit up, and say WOW!

For that we tap Scott Jarrett, younger brother of Jazz legend Keith Jarrett, and a monster, monster ballad.

Sit back and enjoy!

Scott Jarrett - The Image of You

This Date ... On The Garlic

14 May 2008... On The Garlic

Top Ten Cloves: Things President Bush Didn't Give Up Over Iraq War

14 May 2007... On The Garlic

"I'm Shocked ... Shocked To Find Terrorism Going On Here " ... The Results - The Garlic Weekly Poll

14 May 2005... On The Garlic

Weekend Special - Sautéed Cloves

Poll Results for The Garlic's Weekly Poll May 7 - May 13 2006; Steve Colbert, for his White House Correspondents' Association Dinner Performance, Can Expect ...

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

"The score is four / And next time more”

This news broke yesterday, and it is big ...

I mean BIG!

Here's the background, in the event you were born after the 1970's;

The Kent State shootings – also known as the May 4 massacre or Kent State massacre – [2][3][4] occurred at Kent State University in the city of Kent, Ohio, and involved the shooting of unarmed college students by members of the Ohio National Guard on Monday, May 4, 1970. The guardsmen fired 67 rounds over a period of 13 seconds, killing four students and wounding nine others, one of whom suffered permanent paralysis.[5]

Some of the students who were shot had been protesting against the American invasion of Cambodia, which President Richard Nixon announced in a television address on April 30. Other students who were shot had been walking nearby or observing the protest from a distance.[6][7]

Now, here's the blockbuster news;

New analysis of 40-year-old recording of Kent State shootings reveals that Ohio Guard was given an order to prepare to fire

The Ohio National Guardsmen who fired on students and antiwar protesters at Kent State University on May 4, 1970 were given an order to prepare to shoot, according to a new analysis of a 40-year-old audio tape of the event.

"Guard!" says a male voice on the recording, which two forensic audio experts enhanced and evaluated at the request of The Plain Dealer. Several seconds pass. Then, "All right, prepare to fire!"

"Get down!" someone shouts urgently, presumably in the crowd. Finally, "Guard! . . . " followed two seconds later by a long, booming volley of gunshots. The entire spoken sequence lasts 17 seconds.

Why is this a big deal?
The previously undetected command could begin to explain the central mystery of the Kent State tragedy - why 28 Guardsmen pivoted in unison atop Blanket Hill, raised their rifles and pistols and fired 67 times, killing four students and wounding nine others in an act that galvanized sentiment against the Vietnam War.

The order indicates that the gunshots were not spontaneous, or in response to sniper fire, as some have suggested over the years.

I was not-yet 15-years-old when this went down, the tipping point, after the blizzard of nightly news footage of the carnage in Viet Nam, and the handful of older guys from the neighborhood that came home in body bags.

Now, our government was shooting at us.

For, merely, expressing our 1st Amendment rights.

Digby, on her blog Hullabaloo, has a great post up, in which she quotes from the book 'Nixonland', showing, chillingly, the parallels between the red-faced, crew-cut conservatives, the ones who bought, at retail price, the tainted American Dream, the ones who in the aftermath of the Kent State shootings chanted "The score is four / And next time more”, and today's political climate;
The country eventually disengaged from Vietnam. But that was only one skirmish in our ongoing tribal struggle --- it still rages today. History can now record what really happened that day at Kent State. But I think we can assume from the Nixonland excerpt that whether or not the Guardsmen shot under orders was never really the issue anyway.

The funny thing is that the same Real Americans who believed the protesters deserved it would join the tea parties today and complain mightily about government overreach. In fact, many of them probably have.
(Susie Madrak, over on Crooks and Liars, has a post with video, and audio)

And, there is still pain;
In Pittsburgh, Doris Krause has been waiting 40 years to find out who killed her daughter Allison, and why. Now 84 and widowed, she said Friday the presence of the prepare-to-fire order doesn't surprise her.

"It had to be," she said. "There's no other way they could have turned in unison without a command. There's no other way they could fire at the same time."

She is frustrated, though, that the recording can't identify the person who gave the order. "I wish there was better proof," Krause said. "We have to find a man with enough courage to admit what happened.

"I'm an old lady," she said, "and before I leave this earth, I'd like to find out who said what is on that tape."

"Courage to admit what happened ..."

Hopefully, it won't take another 40-years to find that out.

Crosby Stills Nash Young Teach Your Children - Iraq

Retro Garlic: Gates vs. Iron Man

The other day we posted "Robert Gates Is In The House!", for his address taking on, and shooting an arrow across the bow of, the Military-Industrial Complex.

Yesterday, Robert Farley and Davida H. Isaacs, over on The American Prospect, put up an amusing, and informative, post, relating to the colossally-large elephant in the room;

The Stark Reality of Defense Contracting ...A summer blockbuster tackles disputes endemic to the military-industrial complex

In Iron Man 2, billionaire industrialist Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) risks billion-dollar pieces of equipment to impress guests at a birthday party -- a big mistake for a defense contractor. After all, Stark's reckless debauchery provides the perfect pretext for the U.S. government to take away his Iron Man suit. Explosions, tattoos, and Scarlett Johansson notwithstanding, the disputes between Tony Stark and his antagonists revolve around ownership of the rights to the Iron Man technology. Iron Man 2 is the most expensive movie ever made about an intellectual property dispute.


In the United States, inventors are supposed to profit from their creations, as emphasized in the original comics. But Iron Man 2 takes a different tack. While trying to fend off Vanko, Stark is pressured by the U.S. government to give up the secrets of the Iron Man suit. After Stark refuses a senator's demand that he relinquish his body-armor technology, the government forcibly takes it from him, only to turn it over to a competitor that then uses the technology to fulfill its own defense contract. Consciously or no, this echoes the real world; the United States government can take such actions with almost total legal impunity.

These inventors theoretically have their own superpower at their disposal: the Fifth Amendment's "Takings Clause," which requires compensation for government appropriation. But it has one weakness: the military and state secrets privilege, which has been invoked with increasing frequency in the past 25 years. Perhaps most notably, it has been used to prevent suspected terrorists from obtaining access to incriminating information. Less well known is the role it has played in suppressing intellectual-property owners' attempts to recover compensation for government use of their innovations.


Stark didn't need a monetary incentive to develop his technology. And presumably Stark, either individually or through his company, retained sufficient political pull to obtain compensation for that stolen technology without having to rely on the Takings Clause. Of course, he's just a fictional comic book hero. But as audiences watch Senate efforts to persuade Tony Stark to relinquish Iron Man technology to the U.S. Government, they should keep in mind that Stark's greatest power might not be his full-body armor but instead his company's political connections.

Suit up there, Mr. Gates ...

Or, call in the cavalry!

This Date ... On The Garlic

11 May 2009... On The Garlic

Just A Little Lovin'

11 May 2008... On The Garlic

Don't Cry For Me, Lanny Davis ...

Today's Must Read - The Military-Media Dog-and-Pony Show

11 May 2006... On The Garlic

Top Ten Cloves: Signs HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson Is Getting Ready To Cancel Your Contract

11 May 2005... On The Garlic

Garlic Exclusive! Dems Seek Arrest, Charges of Senate Leader Frist, and Others; Say Nuclear Threat Violates Patriot Act; AG Gonzales Opens Investigation

Top Ten Cloves: Other Things The Courts Are Letting United Airlines Do To Their Retirees

Monday, May 10, 2010

This Is Why We Need To Keep Newspapers Around

I have been a newspaper junkie for much of my life.

Even very young, five, six-years-old, I would race up to my grandfather's corner store, and read the paper before school, going back-to-front, having to scope out, first, how my favorite sports team made out the night before.

There was so much stuff to be wondered by.

Aside from the hard news, and the Op-Ed Pages, newspapers are necessary for something much, much more;

Filler articles, and the local answer man, or advice giver.

These items are gold and a really good item makes trekking through the paper a most satisfying experience.

Today's 'The Boston Globe' has such an item.

It comes from the "Ask Dr. Knowledge" column (who is actually, a local Physics professor);

Why is drinking a milkshake through a straw harder than a soft drink?

Q - If I order a soft drink at a fast-food restaurant, I can drink it with a thin straw or a wide straw, with little difficulty either way. When it comes to a milkshake though, I can’t get anything at all through the narrow straw. Why?

A - The first thing to notice about the milkshake is that it’s viscous, which is the scientific way of saying that it’s sticky. Water is somewhat viscous, too, but much less so.


If you can just manage to suck up a milkshake through the wide straw, however, you would need 16 times the suction to get it up the narrower one at the same rate.
There is more detail Dr. Knowledge provides the benighted milkshake drinker, so check that out.

What marveled me was that there was someone out there, so stumped, so fraught with anxiety, so lost over the complexity of straws, parched, maybe jonesin' for a milkshake, and perpetually stymied by those darn straws, the straw being Lucy-and-the-football, that they wrote (perhaps emailed) the local newspapers' "Dr. Knowledge" in a quest to have their life reunited with the tasty ice-cream, milk and syrup libation.

And, I have to wonder, if, in the Doc's answer, the part about needing "16 times the suction", if he was, slyly, telling the questioner that, you gotta really suck, both, to drink the milkshake, and, to send in a question like that.

This is why we need to keep newspapers around.

Bonus Links

Michael Sokolove: What’s a Big City Without a Newspaper?

Will Bunch: Apple's tablet will NOT save journalism

Danny Sullivan: Google CEO Eric Schmidt On Newspapers & Journalism

Clay Shirky: Newspapers and Thinking the Unthinkable

Stormy Weather, Indeed ... RIP Lena Horne

It was sad to discover, via multiple posts, the passing of actress, and Jazz singer, Lena Horne.

I have a handful of her albums (well, now, CD's) and she had a lovely voice, you knew, from the first note or two, that it was Lena Horne singing, so soft, or sultry.

Lena Horne, Singer and Actress, Dies at 92

Ms. Horne was stuffed into one “all-star” musical after another — “Thousands Cheer” (1943), “Broadway Rhythm” (1944), “Two Girls and a Sailor” (1944), “Ziegfeld Follies” (1946), “Words and Music” (1948) — to sing a song or two that could easily be snipped from the movie when it played in the South, where the idea of an African-American performer in anything but a subservient role in a movie with an otherwise all-white cast was unthinkable.


Touring Army camps for the U.S.O., Ms. Horne was outspoken in her criticism of the way black soldiers were treated. “So the U.S.O. got mad,” she recalled. “And they said, ‘You’re not going to be allowed to go anyplace anymore under our auspices.’ So from then on I was labeled a bad little Red girl.”

Ms. Horne later claimed that for this and other reasons, including her friendship with leftists like Paul Robeson and W.E.B. DuBois, she was blacklisted and “unable to do films or television for the next seven years” after her tenure with MGM ended in 1950.


Ms. Horne’s voice was not particularly powerful, but it was extremely expressive. She reached her listeners emotionally by acting as well as singing the romantic standards like “The Man I Love” and “Moon River” that dominated her repertory. The person she always credited as her main influence was not another singer but a pianist and composer, Duke Ellington’s longtime associate Billy Strayhorn.

“I wasn’t born a singer,” she told Strayhorn’s biographer, David Hajdu. “I had to learn a lot. Billy rehearsed me. He stretched me vocally.” Strayhorn occasionally worked as her accompanist and, she said, “taught me the basics of music, because I didn’t know anything.”


Looking back at the age of 80, Ms. Horne said: “My identity is very clear to me now. I am a black woman. I’m free. I no longer have to be a ‘credit.’ I don’t have to be a symbol to anybody; I don’t have to be a first to anybody. I don’t have to be an imitation of a white woman that Hollywood sort of hoped I’d become. I’m me, and I’m like nobody else.”

While that be the standard, boiler-plate obit, we found a few people that came to Lena Horne via other routes.

Like, Edward Copeland;
I know why there's no sun up in the sky and that's because the world has lost the irreplaceable Lena Horne at the age of 92. The actress/singer who helped to break down racial barriers by becoming the first African-American performer to receive a major Hollywood studio contract passed away Sunday night in a Manhattan hospital.


The bulk of her career was spent taking that sultry voice to concert halls or appearing as herself in other venues such as That's Entertainment III and sitcoms such as A Different World, The Cosby Show and a particularly memorable Sanford & Son, where Fred tricked her into coming to his house claiming that Lamont was his young, terminally ill child.

Or, Melissa McEwan;
I know the exact moment I saw Lena Horne for the first time. I was 11, and she made a guest appearance on "The Cosby Show," as herself, in an episode where Claire (Phylicia Rashad) took Cliff (Bill Cosby) to see her perform for his birthday. I remember thinking how beautiful and glamorous she was, and falling utterly in love with her voice, which has remained to this day one of my absolute favorites—totally recognizable, totally unmistakable, totally butter.

That hits it, "totally butter."

And, while a bevy of people posted her signature tune, "Stormy Weather" (Dave Itzkoff, over on the NYT Artsbeat, additionally posted a nice one, of Lena Horne and Kermit the Frog singing "It Ain't Easy Being Green"), we took the nod from our friend Dee Dee Gordon, who went with, a classic, a Jazz standard, written by Michael Legrand, for "Les Parapluies de Cherbourg" (which also happens to be one of my all-time favorite tunes).

It's a gem ...

Lena Horne with Gabor Szabo - Watch What Happens (Revised)

It's Kagan!

Now, doesn't that have a ring of a summer replacement television show?

It's Kagan!

Quick, pull up the promo of a short, lets say, rounded, Elena Kagan, bouncing around, crazy-like, having mishaps, bumping into people, running in-and-out of an apartment, having forgotten something.

From the promo, we'll know it's going to be a zany comedy.

Well, it almost played out that way, with Cable going wall-to-wall with "It's Kagan", giving them an opportunity to ignore the disaster of the oil spill for the day (and likely, many more).

Jeffrey Toobin penned a post that he hangs, and hung, out with her.

They've already started, with slamming Kagan, for agreeing with something Thurgood Marshall said, which is pointed out they used the same, weak-ass fart, against Obama.

The Left has questions, with, at least, one push-back

A few more, Digby and Stephanie Mencimer, go with the inexperience angle, of Elana Who?

While Glenn Greenwald stands against her.

If nothing comes up that bashes her, expect someone - The PartyofNoicans, or Faux News, perhaps one of the many Flying Monkeys of the Right Wing Freak Show - will start a whisper campaign, a post with lots of question marks, on whether or not Elena Kagen is a lesbian.

Andrew Sullivan is already calling for Kagan to come out of the closet (if she is encased in one), while Digby cautions him to "Don't Go There", with Ta-Nehisi Coates needs a "Talk to Me Like I'm Stupid" about it all, and on-cue, some Flying Monkeys are trying to rally the troops with "The stakes are too high. Social conservatives must rise up as one and say no lesbian is qualified to sit on the Supreme Court.?"

If you want to hit the Tivo, and bypass all that, you can go to Tom Goldstein, from the Scotusblog, who is a-man-with-plan, laying out almost all you need to read about Elena Kagan;

It’s Kagan

9750 Words on Elena Kagan ...More than you ever wanted to know

Where We Go From Here ...Process and substance in a Kagan nomination

And it's only Day One.

You can check out Memeorandum to stay on-top of the minutia

This Date ... On The Garlic

10 May 2009... On The Garlic

Happy Mother's Day!

Where Do We Go

10 May 2007... On The Garlic

Developing Story! Bush Said Ready To Dump Wolfowitz and Name Blair New World Bank Chief; Sources Say Bush Not Ready To Abandon Rewarding Iraq War Supporters; Cheney Furious, Was Lobbying For Libby Posting

New Barry Crimmins Essay - We Are Here

Keith Olberman Follow-Up: AAN Presents First Annual Molly Ivins Award to Keith Olbermann

10 May 2006... On The Garlic

More Letters on The Garlic’s Baseball Piece

10 May 2005... On The Garlic

American Idol Spin's Off New Born-Again Virgin Show; All Christian Music Format; Special Segment For Declaring New, Multi-Born Again Status

Amazon Says "I Do"; Opens Wedding Registry;Offers Free Shipping For Weddings With Over 100 Guests

Top Ten Cloves: Other Born-Again Virgins Now That John Mason Is Out

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Happy Mother's Day!

Here's wishing, from The Garlic, to all the Moms out there, a very, very happy Mother's Day!

We know that;

Mother's Day is an annual holiday that recognizes mothers, motherhood and maternal bonds in general, as well the positive contributions that they make to society. In the United States, it is celebrated on the second Sunday in May.


In its present form, Mother's Day was established by Anna Marie Jarvis, following the death of her mother Ann Jarvis on May 9, 1905, with the help of a Philadelphia merchant called John Wanamaker.[2] A small service was held in May 12, 1907 in the Andrew's Methodist Episcopal Church in Grafton, West Virginia, where Anna's mother had been teaching Sunday school.[2] But the first "official" service was in May 10, 1908 in the same church, accompanied by a larger ceremony in the Wanamaker Auditorium in the Wanamaker's store on Philadelphia.[2] She then campaigned to establish Mother's Day as a U.S. national holiday, and later as an international holiday.[1][2]

The holiday was declared officially by the state of West Virginia in 1910, and the rest of states followed quickly.[2] On May 8, 1914, the U.S. Congress passed a law designating the second Sunday in May as Mother's Day and requesting a proclamation. On May 9, 1914, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation, declaring the first national Mother's Day,[9][10] as a day for American citizens to show the flag in honor of those mothers whose sons had died in war.[9]

In 1934, U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt approved a stamp commemorating the holiday.[11]

Here's a few Bonus Links you can peruse;

And, lastly, perhaps the greatest tune evah, written (and performed) about mothers.

As Wikipedia notes;
"Sweet Mother" is a highlife song by the Nigeria/Cameroonian singer Prince Nico Mbarga and his band Rocafil Jazz. Released in 1976, it remains one of the most popular songs in Africa.

Prince Nico Mbarga Sweet Mother

Custer's Last Stand?... FUBAR!

We know, from 'Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee: An Indian History of the American West', that the Native Americans labeled General George Armstrong Custer "Hard Backside", for his, seemingly, comfort of sitting atop a horse for long periods of time.

But is not to say they meant that endearingly.

Today, in Salon, there is a fascinating review, by Tom Carson, of Barnes & Noble Review, - "George Custer: An American embarrassment ...An award-winning author exposes gruesome details about Little Bighorn and revisits the story of its much-hated hero " - on a new book by Nathaniel Philbrick.

In fact Custer was anything but endearing to the Indians;

"More than anything else, he wanted to be remembered." That's how Nathaniel ("Mayflower") Philbrick sizes up George Armstrong Custer toward the end of "The Last Stand: Custer, Sitting Bull and the Battle of the Little Bighorn,"and no one will dispute that America's ultimate glory hound got his wish. Too bad the victorious Lakota and Cheyenne weren't feeling respectful after wiping out his command in what's now Montana on June 25, 1876. They not only punctured the dead Custer's eardrums because he "wouldn't listen," but -- in a detail long suppressed by decorum -- jammed an arrow up the corpse's penis.

In short, Philbrick lays out that the Custer myth is largely overblown, and he was a suck-ass leader, probably, a roaring asshole.
But the larger enterprises the other two symbolize are less morally iffy, which is why Custer's main contribution to winning-of-the-West triumphalism was providing it with a martyr. For 19th-century audiences, Sitting Bull's morose participation in the reenactments that climaxed Buffalo Bill's hugely popular Wild West show in the 1880s must have seemed like the equivalent of the real Pontius Pilate performing in a passion play.

Today, Custer has long since become an embarrassment to educated white Americans. But the effort we've put into debunking him amounts to admitting we're stuck with him. From the Goldilocks hairdo he'd actually rid himself of before Little Bighorn to the final, almost certainly inaccurate, tableau of The Last White Man Standing as the "hostiles" close in, he's the horse's ass we rode in on.


By 1876, Custer was a renowned enough Indian fighter to have published a bestselling autobiography two years earlier: "My Life on The Plains," renamed "My Lie on The Plains" by one skeptic who'd served under him. But after the laurels he'd won as the Civil War's youngest and most dashing model of a modern major general, his reduced peacetime rank and constricted room for initiative left him chafing. Mistrusted by his superiors, he had even more fractious relations with two of his subordinates: Major Marcus Reno and Captain Frederick Benteen, who didn't much like each other either. This was fateful, since Reno and Benteen were in charge of the Seventh Cavalry's other two columns once Custer's contingent rode off.

Carson has a wry sense of humor, weaving in the review "one of those engagements white people called a battle and Indians called a massacre" and "the sort of encounter Indians called a battle and white people called a massacre."

And, from the get-go, Custer's plan was FUBAR;
Custer's plan was apparently to duplicate his success eight years earlier against Black Kettle's Cheyenne band on the Washita, one of those engagements white people called a battle and Indians called a massacre. Splitting his command then as now, he'd destroyed the Indians' village -- populated mainly by women and children -- and devastated their pony herd, then gotten away before their warriors could hit him back.

Well, it didn't work out that way.

It was major-league FUBAR.
Experts may find more to quarrel with here than I did. But even if Philbrick has everything right, that doesn't make "The Last Stand" the "definitive" book on the Little Bighorn, any more than Connell's was. There clearly ain't no such animal, and never will be. What may be most to this one's credit is a humanity that can make even inveterate Custer-haters pity the men who got stuck following him, as did at least one Sioux warrior at the time. "I felt really sorry for them, they looked so frightened," Standing Bear later told his son. "Many of them lay on the ground, with their blue eyes open, waiting to be killed."

Go check out the full review, it's a good read.

Bonus Bonus

A little Native American Jazz

Jim Pepper -Witchi Tia To

This Date ... On The Garlic

9 May 2008... On The Garlic

Sweet Mother

9 May 2006... On The Garlic

Breaking News! Rove Plagiarism Alleged; Fitzgerald Contemplating Hitting Rove With Plagiarism In Grand Jury Appearances; Longtime Bush Aide Denies Charges, Says May Have “Internalized” Testimony From Staffers, Others

Top Ten Cloves: How The White House Is Coaching General Hayden For Confirmation To Head CIA

9 May 2005... On The Garlic

Bush In Wrong Countries; White House Blunders On Bush Europe Itinerary; Chirac, EuroDisney Officials Miffed At No-Show

Merck Defends Vioxx Tactics; Says "haven't done anything different that what baseball did"

Top Ten Cloves: Things Karl Rove Did To Help Get Tony Blair Elected Again