Saturday, May 31, 2008

A heavy cross to bear

update: Senator Barack Obama is ending his membership at Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, a congregation he has belonged to for about two decades and one that had become a lightning rod in his Democratic presidential bid.

From Pat Tillman's eulogy:
In this struggle [the war in Iraq], some will speak of God as the guide and guardian of the struggle, while others will speak of a higher power, and still others will look within to summon up a deep and personal courage that knows no denomination or catechism.

Pentagon Sued Over Mandatory Christianity
Researched by Sarah Maddox and Bill Gibbons
Jason Leopold, Truthout

A lawsuit was filed in federal court against the Pentagon, and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, and a US Army Major, by a military watchdog organization, on behalf of an Army soldier stationed in Iraq. The nonprofit Military Religious Freedom Foundation filed the complaint September 18th, 2007, charging the Pentagon with widespread constitutional violations by allegedly trying to force the soldier to embrace evangelical Christianity and then retaliating against him when he refused. Jeremy Hall, an active duty Army specialist in Iraq, claims his First Amendment rights were violated because of his atheist beliefs, for which he was threatened with the charge of violating the Uniform Code of Military Justice and the blocking of his reenlistment in the Army.


Fundy Fruitcake First Ladies Share Fashion Secrets.

Proud to be hugely stupid

Heah in Flawda, when a fancy zirconium ring is not enough:

"With the pole already in the ground and building permits in hand, the group is on its way to having what it calls the "world's largest" Confederate flag in place by mid 2009. The group just needs about $30,000 more... Adams insists the flag isn't about racism or slavery. "It's about honoring our ancestors and about celebrating our heritage," he said. "It's a historical thing to us."

And a not so histerical thing to others.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Art of Coming McClean

The WhiteHouse Ball of Wax (photo not related)

Scott McClellan has a new book out titled "what happened" . No need to buy it, ( he still GOP) get the broad-strokes online. McClellan want you to know how the BFEE (bushfamilyevilempire) mis-lead him and the american sheeple to march over the cliff's edge into a war. He also confers the corporate media complicity in a propaganda drum-beat charade that is still unraveling.

"The viewpoint seemed to be -- from their testing and polling -- that the American people did not want to know what was going on, so why bother them with unwanted facts too soon? So, if we look at the media today, we ought to be aware not just of what we are getting, but what we are not getting; the difference between what is authentic and what is inauthentic in contemporary American life and in the world, with a warning that in this celebrity culture, the forces of the inauthentic are becoming more powerful all the time."

McComeclean reminds me of Richard Clarke (head on fire) and his 911 warnings / apologies.

You go Scotty, Kick some matrix butt.

Monday, May 26, 2008

go ask Alice when she's 9 feet tall

Golden Book and Gollum make a fine pair.


From the time-gobbling Ezprezzo Cafe
Jefferson Airplane with Star-Trek sampling.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

operation Galk and Awe

Urban Beach Weekend has returned to miami for a bubblisious party swamptyle. The 300,000 visitors to our beaches are expected to make some noise y'all .. and the usual over-time bonanza for our finest.

Coming next to miami, the Chinese Beach Weekend?

Friday, May 23, 2008

Decoration Day

Cindy Sheehan for congress
My favorite Peace Mom is taking on Nancy (impeachment is off the table) Pelosi.

Commander (mission accomplished) Codpiece for decoration.
May 26, 2008 us casualties 4081

Have a Memorable Weekend.

Fear Not, Taserware Party

The U.S. government doesn't consider Tasers to be firearms. They're legal in most states —

Annie Oakley might agree that every lady needs a little protection... then and now.
Personal security is all the rage. Why not be your own first-responder, get a taser, enhance it with a weekly boxing class at the local gym and you've got that "No Fear" attitudinal essential in todays uncertain world.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

southpaws rightstuff

The big deal here is not just Mr. Obama's orientation. Republican front-runner John McCain comes from the same, left-leaning 10 percent to 15 percent of the population. It's becoming clearer by the day -- unless every right-hander in Texas, Ohio and Pennsylvania votes for Mrs. Clinton -- that the next president will be left-handed.

A really interesting question is whether there is any connection between left handed people and creative genius. Some of history's most creative minds have been left-handed.
In the category of art, both Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo were left handed. In the category of music, Ludwig van Beethoven was left handed. In the field of science and invention, you find Benjamin Franklin, Isaac Newton, and Albert Einstein.


Bobby Fisher, the modern chess genius, is left handed. So too musical geniuses Bob Dylan, Paul McCartney, and Wynton Marsalis.
Each of the these persons had a mind so exceptional as to be head and shoulders above anyone else in their field.
And then there's the case of Ronald Reagan. He wrote with his right hand, but discussion has abounded that he was switched from his natural tendencies when he was young by strict schoolteachers. It has been pointed out that he slapped Angie Dickinson with his left hand in the film "The Killers," which is what a lefty would do.

your weekly parking ticket neurosis

.... just doing my job.

If there is anything more trivial and annoying than your weekly $18 dollar parking ticket, it is the people that issue them. Sneaky, relentless and with our money, the MiamiParkingAuthirity is re-designing our town street-level quality of life, one sign at a time... and visual pollution is the least of our Orwellian quandry.
In the more effervescent neighborhoods there is basically no free parking and the old-fashioned parking meters (one-turn-bandits) are not retired, they are installed where there once was none, in the marginal periphery, in 'no-mans-land' bordering residential streets .
Their relentless greed and heartless practice is fueled by dreams of a revenue stream wider than the everglades. On a quite unassuming alley in the design district I used to have a loading-zone sign in front of my studio that was replaced by another one of those gawd forsaken meter sentry contraptions.

Wassup with all that? Is MPA private-for-profit (just like MDX)?
Local businesses and residents are on the ground doing the heavy lifting, working against a tsunami of increasing cost-of-living demands to keep our city afloat. We do not need:
parasite |ˈparəˌsīt| noun an organism that lives in or on another organism (its host) and benefits by deriving nutrients at the host's expense. • derogatory a person who habitually relies on or exploits others and gives nothing in return.

If all that money collected went to something good, say directly to our ailing schools, or community outreach, to identify and offer real help to neglected children, isolated elderly and neighborhoods problems, then maybe it would not be so bad, but it all just goes down the bureaucratic money-hole in buckets.

It's our car's world now.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Anchors Aweigh

Anchors Aweigh my boys Anchors Aweigh
Farewell to college joys
We sail at break of day day day day

Through our last night on shore
Drink to the foam
Until we meet once more
Here’s wishing you a happy voyage home!

I grew up watching the Skipper Chuck on channel 10.

Mustache or not, Dwight was always bright.

As another blue moon rises over miami we bid farewell to one of our own TV anchors Dwight Lauderdale. Tonight will be his final broadcast of the 11 o'clock news on channel 10. Just beneath the pancake makeup is a seasoned journalist in the grand tradition of Ralph Renick and Manolo Reyes, all class acts. In the 70's and 80's Dwight , together with Ann Bishop, informed miamian with integrity at a time when corporate media madness was just a few crazies dream. Dwight had opportunities to leave miami but he chose to stay saying, " I like it here".

In stark contrast, there is never a good time to mention my least favorite miami TV anchor, it's no other than Rick Sanchez the ignoramus. Rick hails from here but he quickly bailed for a gig with CNN in Atlanta... don't let the door-knob git-ya where the good lord spit-ya. It takes allot of disappointing ineptitude for me to poop on a lefty.

a corporate clown

"...21-year-old journalism student Chelsea Brown, though, was less than impressed by Sanchez' bellicose confrontations during the taping with several of the students including herself. I spoke with Miss Brown after the interview and she told me was offended and shocked by Sanchez' lack of professional comportment."

The big Q in TV circles is who will be the heir apparent? If I had to choose, it would be my home-girl Belkys Nerey. If for no other reason than to get her away from FOX. She's got what it takes to play in the big league and deserves better than Faux News.

Her eyes are wide open, and her smile is genuine.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

ha ha, i forgot to laugh

This would be funny if it wasn't real.

And this is just plain stupid.

from Rush Limpbaugh's closet.

can't affored no CHANGE

Friend --

The polls are closed in Kentucky and votes are being counted in Oregon, and it's clear that tonight we have reached a major milestone on this journey.

We have won an absolute majority of all the delegates chosen by the people in this Democratic primary process [...]

And that's without Oregon, which should further pad the margin for whatever gets decided regarding Florida and Michigan.

Artist Shepard Fairley has done some very stricking portraits of our next president.
Here is one of the official obama posters available at the supporter store.

If pro is the opposite of con, is congress the opposite of progress? Just asking.

“I wanted to make an art piece of Barack Obama because I thought an iconic portrait of him could symbolize and amplify the importance of his mission. I believe Obama will guide this country to a future where everyone can thrive and I should support him vigorously for the sake of my two young daughters. I have made art opposing the Iraq war for several years, and making art of Obama, who opposed the war from the start, is like making art for peace. I know I have an audience of young art fans and I’m delighted if I can encourage them to see the merits of Barack Obama.”

-Shepard Fairey

The time is ripe for CHANGE- Change How American Noggins Get Educated.

Monday, May 19, 2008

The second oldest banned book in Florida

Did you know we ban books here in Florida? As if the impressionable read anymore. But we can watch all sorts of sordidness on TV 24/7.

Although the book is banned in Florida, elsewhere in the nation it garners sufficient sales for a paperback edition.

The story of the second-best little whorehouse in Miami
that local officials never wanted you to read about.

Madam Sherry’s tale, as recounted in Pleasure Was My Business, begins in winter 1929.

mat thomas does a good job of telling the picture-story.

Art and Science - Kissing Cousins

Working with emerging local artist is my thing. If you like the work of Bhakti Baxter, then visit the Fredric Snitzer Gallery to see first-hand our recent collaboration, INFLORESCENCE, before it goes to a collector. This is the third of four 'Bhakstars' . They are a captivating and therapeutic blend of art(vision) and science(plastic).

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Wiki Wacky re-Writers

I am more the Funk & Wagnell type but if you are a regular swampstyle reader then you know i link to wikipedia- often out of convenience but more so because kids get it. Wiki-watchers will tell you it is not the most reliable source for truths but in most cases its good enough, except when we read this:

CIA and FBI Edit Wikipedia Researched by Pat Stengle and Elizabeth Allen
People using CIA and FBI computers have edited entries in the online encyclopedia Wikipedia on topics including the Iraq war and Guantanamo prison, according to a new tracing program. The changes violate Wikipedia’s conflict of interest guidelines. The tracing program, WikiScanner, was developed by Cal Tech graduate, Virgil Griffith, who traced numerous violations to FBI and CIA computers. According to spokesperson Sandy Ordonez of the Wikimedia Foundation, Wikipedia’s neutrality guidelines prohibit persons with close ties to an issue from contributing to or editing that entry.

In fairness, these career bureaucrats may know more than us about certain historical facts but to use our tax dollars to revise Wiki entries on war is weird at best and at worst a memory hole for the truth. The open-source model is the dynamic that makes Wiki a success. The dilemma is how can one write anything useful about something one knows nothing about?

Girls Gone Waring

When the cubaNostalgia crowd tell you that the communism boogie-man is alive and well, forget chavez, and look no further than this photo. Pour me another vodka.... The Russians are Coming... (to join the RadioCity Rockettes?) In 2008 it's the militarization, stupid.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Place Frog in Water, Simmer till Done

Remember 2001 when the new Total Information Awareness Office flopped because it was set up to rely on regular people to step-up and join the snitch club? No one stepped up to the plate but a few crazies. Well it appears that plan B is working out very nicely. With the help of corporateism we now have INFRAGARD to keep a watch on us ay.

“Exclusive! The FBI Deputizes Business” Matthew Rothschild

More than 23,000 representatives of private industry are working quietly with the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security to collect information on individuals. The members of this rapidly growing group, called InfraGard, receive secret warnings of terrorist threats before the public, and at times before elected officials. In return they provide information to the government. The ACLU warns, “There is evidence that InfraGard may be closer to a corporate TIPS program, turning private-sector corporations—some of which may be in a position to observe the activities of millions of individual customers—into surrogate eyes and ears for the FBI.” Aside from information sharing, members are expected to assist the government when martial law is declared. “They’re very much looped into our readiness capability,” says DHS spokeswoman Amy Kudwa. According to more than one interviewed member they have permission to shoot to kill in the event of martial law without fear of prosecution. As of late January 2008, InfraGard had 23,682 members, according to its website,, which adds that, “350 of our nation’s Fortune 500 have representatives in InfraGard.”

My emphasis in red.
I like safety as much as the next person, but this is looking more like "comunismo con comida" with each day.
If you have any secrets, this would be a good time to get rid of them.

UPDATE: Today in the NYTimes:

As Prices Rise, Crime Tipsters Work Overtime
...“Crime doesn’t pay but we do,” say the mobile billboards cruising Jacksonville, Fla. A poster in Jackson, Tenn., draws a neat equation: “Ring Ring + Bling Bling = Cha-Ching.” The bling, in this case, is a pair of handcuffs.....
For tips that bring results, programs in most places pay $50 to $1,000, with some jurisdictions giving bonuses for help solving the most serious crimes, or an extra “gun bounty” if a weapon is recovered...

“We have people out there that, realistically, this could be their job,” ...

Props for:

Friday, May 16, 2008

Party of Life at myspace

Keith Haring would have turned fifty this year and there was more than one vip "Party of Life" in NY to commemorate him. Keith was an intensely gifted person who worked/played hard and practiced what i call " receive and you shall give". From nuclear disarmament to aids awareness his passion was activism through art. As his success grew his birthday parties just got bigger each year.

Ever wonder what it is like to be dead for 20 years and then have a MySpace?
Apparently someone has opened a perfectly good MySpace for him, with a note to visitors:

**PLEASE read this first before sending me a message. This page is a tribute page for Keith Haring, approved by the KH foundation HOWEVER any messages will NOT go to Keith or his foundation, but to the creator of this page. I am amazed at how many people think by sending a message through here, that it goes to Keith directly. Please read the bio and history of his life, and note that he is no longer with us, yet his art lives on!

And from the family albums... Keith Haring, Carmel Schmidt and Min Thometz at Kenny Scharf's beach place in Brazil 1984.

cafe con MinTreats

Best Cookies in Miami: MINTREATS    ( after KB's cookies at Lost n Found)
GUILT FREE and Super Healthy, Fully Loaded Oatmeal Cookies Naturally Delicious and Always Fresh. Available at the ShoreClub n Raleigh hotels and GoGo Empanadas on Alton Rd.

Best espresso in the world: Cafe LaLLAVE ( your daily "key" to the porcelain throne) Stop brewing flavored sawdust. roasted in LA, two bucks a brick at Publix

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Bang Zoom, to the Moon

Miami's own, Jackie Gleason persuaded Salvador Dali to paint this album cover.
Gleason was a comic force, believed in ufo's, nixon and miami. his music is strictly for the far left-ear cocktail lounge scene that Martin Denny perfected.

This moldy vinyl fetches 300+ on ebay. WWRKD (what would ralph Kramden do)

Denny a Tiki god of lounge music

Jackie on the ukalaili with Tiny Tim.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

opus Magnuson

She'll be coming round the mountain when she comes. She'll be driving six white horses when she comes. Oh, we'll all go out to meet her when she comes. She'll be wearing red pajamas when she comes. She will have to sleep with grandma when she comes.

You want to know who I think is funnier than Lilly Tomlin or Wanda Sites, who is more ravaging than Shirley McLaine or Nichole Kidman, more literate than Doris Lessing or wikipedia and can lay down the beats better than Mia or Lesley Hall....?

Well it is no other than my dear friend, Ann (they broke the mold) Magnuson.

Ann, a wellspring of originality, has been unleashing her unique brand of performance art on raucous crowds since high-school. If I told you also that she is a glittering red-carpet star from hollywood to bolliwood, that she is a syndicated investigable journalist with huge circulations, I would be kidding you not.

If I told you that off stage she is just like you and me, I'd be lying. ann magnuson is our modern day shaman(uhh, shalady).

Drink the bong-water or pass, but do listen to he luv show.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Rauschenberg RIP

"Milton Ernest Rauschenberg was born on Oct. 22, 1925 ....

Rauschenberg saw Thomas Gainsborough's celebrated 1770 painting of young Jonathan Buttal, famously known as "The Blue Boy." He knew the illustrious painting from calendar reproductions and playing cards, but like many people from rural and small-town America, he was thunderstruck by an otherwise obvious fact: Pictures are painted by people.

"That just never occurred to me before," he said, recalling the epiphany, even though he had been drawing avidly since the age of 10. Rauschenberg decided on the spot to become an artist."

I'll never forget years ago going a small gallery in miami for an opening of his small wall sculptures- clever assemblages of found objects wrapped in clear plastic and twine. Rauschenberg sashed in, took a looked around and commented to the dealer- gee whiz, it's all so nice, but why did you not unwrap them?

nesting in the swamp

In a culture that glorifies individualism (to a point), we can find many 'unique' forms of expression. I'm always BOLO for houses that do not conform to the norm, homes that look like these:

This proud fella does something 'special' for almost every holiday.

If one is good, two is better.
These classy neighbors must have got a good deal on giant bronze angels.

This curious guy also has an elaborate toy-train set on his front lawn.

and these folks put the rubber to the swamp.

Monday, May 12, 2008

cafe con arsenic

painting by adolfo sanchez

Required. Reading new book "Cuba and it's Music" by Ned Sublette. In chapter 19 titled "Marti's Monster" he quotes Winston Churchill 1896:

"Though the Spanish Administration is bad, the Cuban Government would be worse- equally corrupt, more capricious, and far less stable. Under such a Government (US backed) revolutions would be periodic, property insecure, equity unknown. A graver danger represents itself. Two-fifths of the insurgents, and by far the bravest and best disciplined part of the rebel forces, are pure negroes. These men... demand a prominent share of the government of the country. Such a claim would be indignantly resisted by the white section, and a racial war, probably conducted with bitter animosity and ferocious cruelty, would ensue, the result being, after years of fighting, another black republic, or at best a partition of the island, as in San Domingo" (Dominican Republic / Haiti)

Back then it wasn't just confederates in the u.s. who felt that even the whitest of cubans failed their "just one drop" (of black blood) racial yardstick, therby conveniently inferior and conquerable. Today I say "welcome to the mulatto millennium"

Ned writes:
"Almost no one in cuba today can tell you the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, but everyone can tell you what the Platt Amendment was. On three occasions in the first two decades of the century the United States invoked the Platt Amendment and sent in troops. Much of the capital and land was in the hands of foreign entities..."

The power structure in Miami may run out of benefits of cuban doubt. Diaz-Ballart and Iliana Lehtinen, Mel Martinez, with microphobes like BabaluBlog n Radio Marti, have been duped by the BFEE for personal benefit. Their drums stop beating as a new chapter is written. CHANGE is always in the wind and it is storm season once again in the swamp. Cuban-Americans today feel a pain that is without tears. We find solace in our music and the spirit of a people that is invincible.

That's just the tip of the cigar, the red-hot end. For the chomped and salacious end, listen to cuban music and read more.

Gracias to Jumel Terrace Books for the signed copy.

UPDATE... to be fair:

#067 Padilla Sues US Officials

Researched by Christina Long and Bill Gibbons

Jose Padilla, a US citizen, arrested on US soil and convicted (under extraordinary circumstances) of being an Al Qadeda operative, is seeking to hold former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and 59 other US officials responsible for physical and psychological abuse and unconstitutional tactics while being held as an ‘enemy combatant’ in military custody for 43 months. Early in 2007 a civil lawsuit was filed on behalf of Padilla in federal court in South Carolina over abuse he suffered from 2002 to 2006 in the US Naval Consolidated Brig in Charleston Station South Carolina. Serious violations included sleep deprivation, stress positions, prolonged isolation, sensory deprivation and other extreme interrogation techniques calculated to profoundly disrupt his senses and personality and destroy his ordinary emotional and cognitive functioning. The government held Padilla for two years without any outside contact, including that of his lawyers. When that policy changed, government officials warned Padilla not to reveal any conditions of his confinement to his lawyers, the suit says. Padilla is left severely psychologically damaged.

“Padilla Sues US Officials Over Confinement” Warren Richey, The Christian Science Monitor 8/24/2007