Saturday, March 25, 2006

"Our commitment to the promotion of freedom is

"Our commitment to the promotion of freedom is a commitment to walk alongside governments and their people as they make the difficult transition to effective democracies."


"We will not abandon them before the transition is secure because immature democracies can be prone to conflict and vulnerable to exploitation by terrorists."


"The more countries demonstrate that they treat their own citizens with respect and are committed to democratic principles, the closer and stronger their relationship with America is likely to be."

G.W. Bush, Champion Aspirations for Human Dignity

Inspired by Mike Golby, "Atomic Playboys"

Friday, March 24, 2006


By way of tacking away from all this media negativity, I say, Isay is a good thing. David Isay. He comes at voice from different angles, but always seems to hook into something rich and strange. In a way, yes, an audible Arbus, but with more of a consistently warmer contextual depth - human histories recalled by real people who have loved and laughed, and who still do, infectively.

I start from a position of not being able to find most any USian radio listenable. The voices from StoryCorps win me over every time. What this is is, the vanishing point in which people who love are never heard in US media. I cannot listen to much NPR anymore. There are certain state reporters, at least here in Florida, whose voices are assembled by robotic hands dangling from high panoptic ceilings, rich in acetate and invincibly incurious of the human heart.

Isay's voices help one hear these things too.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

he believes

In the latest news cycle, Bush began with some "recognitions" of the difficulties of the war. A feint of reality-based awareness. That bought him some time, some patience. Now he's blown by that, offering as his version of a rationale, a plan, nothing more than "I believe."

For this administration, reality is a stage prop to leap from. Into the absolutism of this I.

Monday, March 20, 2006

oil slick

[updated 8:07 a.m., 10:15 a.m.]

Bill Keller, Big Oil, Wolfowitz

Bill Keller, son of Chevron CEO
NEW YORK TIMES (4/11/99): Emma Gilbey, an author and journalist, was married yesterday to Bill Keller, the managing editor of The New York Times. The Rev. Robert J. Kennedy performed the ceremony at the Holy Name of Jesus Roman Catholic Church in Manhattan.

Ms. Gilbey, 38, is keeping her name. She is the author of "The Lady: The Life andTimes of Winnie Mandela" (Jonathan Cape, 1993). The bride graduated from King's College of London University.

She is the daughter of Anthony J. Gilbey of Wangford, England, and the late Lenore Gilbey. The bride's father is the chairman of Gilbey Collections, a London company that commissions limited edition commemorative items. Her mother was a journalist.

Mr. Keller, 50, graduated from Pomona College. He is the son of Adelaide and George M. Keller of San Mateo, Calif. The bridegroom's father retired as the chairman and chief executive of the Chevron Corporation in San Francisco.
[As a dear friend pointed out, this is a nugget of Keller's bio that seems to evade allusion whenever he's in the news.]
[Condoleeza] Rice has served on the board of directors for the Chevron Corporation, the Charles Schwab Corporation, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, Transamerica Corporation, Hewlett Packard, The Carnegie Corporation, The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, The Rand Corporation, and KQED, public broadcasting for San Francisco.

She was also on the Board of Trustees of the University of Notre Dame, the International Advisory Council of J.P. Morgan, and the San Francisco Symphony Board of Governors.

She also headed Chevron's committee on public policy until she resigned on January 15, 2001, to become National Security Advisor to President George W. Bush. Chevron honored Rice by naming an oil tanker Condoleezza Rice after her, but controversy led to its being renamed Altair Voyager.[9][10][11] wikipedia
Ships of Chevron
"Dick Cheney was instrumental in negotiating a Caspian Sea pipeline for Chevron." source

Washington Post: A White House document shows that executives from big oil companies met with Vice President Cheney's energy task force in 2001 -- something long suspected by environmentalists but denied as recently as last week by industry officials testifying before Congress.

...the Government Accountability Office has found that Chevron was one of several companies that "gave detailed energy policy recommendations" to the task force. Also here, here.
Big Oil: Keller, Rice, Bush, Cheney

Bush visits Chevron refinery after Katrina - making no public remarks (White House photo).

"Chevron, which grew out of Standard Oil of California, got its first concession in Saudi Arabia in 1933 and opened its first office in the country in 1934, Robertson said." U.S. President George W. Bush's desire to cut U.S. dependence on Middle East oil shows a "misunderstanding" of global energy supply, the vice chairman of Chevron said.

George Keller also tackled the subject of free trade when the World Trade Club gave him this award eleven years ago. I read over the speech George gave back then and, once again, I was amazed at how little things have changed.

For instance . . .

George emphasized the need to find as much new oil as possible within the U.S. and elsewhere to reduce our dependence on imported oil. That still rings true today.

George also noted that our appalling trade imbalance at that time was due to two things -- lack of competitiveness among U.S. businesses and restrictive government policies.

Well, we've pretty much taken care of the first problem. 1998 speech by Kenneth Derr, CEO, Chevron.

George M. Keller, Trilateral Commission Roster, 1985. (Trilateral Commission)
Chevron - an inverted ‘V’ on a shield, symbolizes protection. Protection granted as a reward to one who has achieved some notable service. Said to represent the rooftree of a house, and has sometimes been given to those who hae built churches or fortresses or who have accomplished work of faithful service. Stavely Genealogy

Chevron definition by google

American Theocracy

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Operation Enduring Shitstorm

Politics forms poems in the mind of the people. Fatal metaphors. KatrinaBush was IraqBush closer in. It registered, despite media efforts to direct public animus to looters. Some now are articulating the links.

Thursday, March 09, 2006


And if what's evolving multihandedly is communal anger, polyglot outrage and self-organizing desperation, is it any surprise that USian news media, trained up on sitcom plots and generic lone strivings in a dream of representative democracy, hasn't means to represent it?

via here and here.

Monday, March 06, 2006

the un[O]scar(r)ed words

You know it's hard out here for a pimp (you ain't knowin)
When he tryin to get this money for the rent (you ain't knowin)
For the Cadillacs and gas money spent (you ain't knowin)
[1] Because a whole lot of bitches talkin shit (you ain't knowin)
[2] Will have a whole lot of bitches talkin shit (you ain't knowin)

In my eyes I done seen some crazy thangs in the streets
Gotta couple hoes workin on the changes for me
But I gotta keep my game tight like Kobe on game night
Like takin from a ho don't know no better, I know that ain't right
Done seen people killed, done seen people deal
Done seen people live in poverty with no meals
It's fucked up where I live, but that's just how it is
It might be new to you, but it's been like this for years
It's blood sweat and tears when it come down to this shit
I'm tryin to get rich 'fore I leave up out this bitch
I'm tryin to have thangs but it's hard fo' a pimp
But I'm prayin and I'm hopin to God I don't slip, yeah


Man it seems like I'm duckin dodgin bullets everyday
Niggaz hatin on me cause I got, hoes on the tray
But I gotta stay paid, gotta stay above water
Couldn't keep up with my hoes, that's when shit got harder
North Memphis where I'm from, I'm 7th Street bound
Where niggaz all the time end up lost and never found
Man these girls think we prove thangs, leave a big head
They come hopin every night, they don't end up bein dead
Wait I got a snow bunny, and a black girl too
You pay the right price and they'll both do you
That's the way the game goes, gotta keep it strictly pimpin
Gotta have my hustle tight, makin change off these women, yeah


Thursday, March 02, 2006

only the dead sleep well

Dear John,

I was going to write a Dear John letter. It would have made reference to the scene in Finnegans Wake in which the dead man, splashed with a bit of libation, awakes, and it takes all the persuading of all the assembled to get him to resume the appropriate attitude of death.

Instead, this:

Cut it out. Look, you sent this email to a few million of your closest disillusioned fellow citizens on Feb. 10. Yesterday you sent another urgent one about Tammy Duckworth and her missing legs. This shit doesn't work, ok? I am confident I will receive a whole bunch more of these, spaced out in your handlers' calibrated effort at randomized timing. They will all look the same, and carry the same contribution button. Other than that, each will automate some just-in-time news hook that appears to desperately need the collective immediate attention of the entire Blue State populace to turn the tide, buck the system, drop a dime, give 'em what for, whatever.

It's all of a piece with the cadaverous animatronic way you talk. You, John. Not that your talking is bad. You can for instance actually compose sentences, paragraphs, mini-essays, entire tomes on the fly. You have a way of ordering and contextualizing arguments that says "Senator from Massachussetts." And it's not just that Massachussetts comes after Tobago on the list of places that have mastered the USian vernacular. What's appalling-er is that in your campaign, your clear communicative superiority over Mr. Bush made no difference. You may have permanently reduced the political attribute of public speaking, the whole communicational shebang of Aristotelian Rhetoric, to a non-essential item. If The Aphasia King could beat you, one reasons, who needs Reason?

Only, it's worst than that. Though dead, you persist in using some PR firm that has no idea of what support entails. If you were really het up about Cheney as your letter of 20 or so days ago intimated, why have we heard nothing more about it? Did The Menace to All Quail scare you with his marksmanship?

John, you probably even care. Your representation of caring is a tired, achingly dull routine. Care, packaged in method-acted messages cranked out by the numbers, is careless. Negligent of occasion, the contingencies, conditions and audiences attendant upon the moment of speaking. Maybe it used to work, and now it doesn't. The fact that you and your party haven't noticed is a sign of your political currency. A vital sign.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

a moving aspiration for motion pictures

"V for Vendetta may be--why hedge? is--the most subversive cinematic deed of the Bush-Blair era" - Wolcott.
Let's see how such a film, if it is such, is re...
-ceived, -viewed, -viled, -cycled by the MediaApparat.

If it doesn't actually rise to the level of Wolcott's estimate, it's still an interesting estimate:
when it was over I knew it was the movie our post 9-11 minds craved and unconsciously had been working towards, a movie that conjured the fear of terrorism and repression and didn’t just tell us how we got into the Orwellian predicament we’re in (terrain already attacked by Fahrenheit 9-11, Syriana, Why We Fight), but made the imaginative leap that would lift us out of the news, out of the political present, and stand up to that fear—face it with fury and compassion.
The question is how one might be "lifted out" not to movieland escape, but to something more present.