Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Charlie Parker's New All-Stars 1947 ~ Relaxin' At Camarillo (Take 4)

Charlie Parker - Alto Sax
Howard McGhee - Trumpet
Wardell Gray - Tenor Sax
Michael "Dodo" Marmarosa - Piano
Barney Kessel - Guitar
George "Red" Callender - Bass
Don Lamond - Drums

Charlie Parker- Confirmation

Music for the NEW YEAR.  Bask in it.  Listen.  Enjoy the true music, classic music of the USA.

Moose the Mooche by Charlie Parker

Charlie "Bird" Parker - Yardbird Suite

Charlie Parker & DIzzy Gillespie - Mohawk [from 1950 album Bird And Diz

Bird & Diz - Bloomdido 1952 /Classic Modern Jazz

SALT PEANUTS by Dizzy Gillespie with Charlie Parker 1945 JAZZ!

PARKER'S MOOD Charlie Parker All Stars with Miles Davis 1948

Billie's Bounce / Charlie Parker The Savoy Recordings

Thriving On A Riff / Charlie Parker The Savoy Recordings

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Sorry for slow posting

As I said above  --  sorry for my slow posting.  I know this is not the most active blog on line   ------   but    ---    this time it has nothing to do with my disgust with our politics, it's about a flooded house, my issues with my insurance company and problems with the folks who we contracted with to do the dry-out, demolition, and reconstruction.  Neither happy, involved, nor committed at this time  --  it's currently about survival.

Happy New Year to EVERYONE  --  hope "things" are wonderful fro ALL.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Nat King Cole - "The Christmas Song" (1961)

more about those Duck folks

Just google "Robertson's - before and after"  ---  and see what those "rednecks" were when they were plain old "millionaire yuppies".

Don't fall for the hype folks.  They're just another form of "snake oil salesmen".

Sunday, December 22, 2013

About the Duck kerfuffle -- Quack, Quack0

Does anyone remember "The Dixie Chicks"?  Remember how the right wing savaged them when they DARED criticize G.W. Bush in London?  Remember how the right wing said freedom of speech means you can say it, but you can't control how folks react?  Remember how they ruined careers when anyone DARED to speak out?  Remember what they did to Bill Maher?

NOW, they say we have no right to react to the rantings of a phoney "redneck".  In fact, the very same folks who DEFENDED virtual censorship of an independent singing group say a NETWORK with contractual rights has no right to discipline an employee.  Try that with YOUR BOSS and claim "freedom of speech", esp. in a Southern State where "at will employment" is the rule.

Those "poor" Duck Dynasty folks, those scripted, real funny folks, who are just your typical down-to-earth millionaires, who appeared to be just plain old YUPPIES before they became a parody of real "rednecks", a parody of hard working folks who just dream of being "Duck Call Millionaires".

May the Robertson's rot in whatever place is reserved for all the phonies we see on "Reality TV"

Thursday, December 19, 2013

All In with Chris Hayes - Equal Employment for All Act

The Meaning of a Decent Society

From Robert Reich - please follow link to original.

It’s the season to show concern for the less fortunate among us. We should also be concerned about the widening gap between the most fortunate and everyone else.

Although it’s still possible to win the lottery (your chance of winning $636 million in the recent Mega Millions sweepstakes was one in 259 million), the biggest lottery of all is what family we’re born into. Our life chances are now determined to an unprecedented degree by the wealth of our parents.

That’s not always been the case. The faith that anyone could move from rags to riches – with enough guts and gumption, hard work and nose to the grindstone – was once at the core of the American Dream.

And equal opportunity was the heart of the American creed. Although imperfectly achieved, that ideal eventually propelled us to overcome legalized segregation by race, and to guarantee civil rights. It fueled efforts to improve all our schools and widen access to higher education. It pushed the nation to help the unemployed, raise the minimum wage, and provide pathways to good jobs. Much of this was financed by taxes on the most fortunate.

But for more than three decades we’ve been going backwards. It’s far more difficult today for a child from a poor family to become a middle-class or wealthy adult. Or even for a middle-class child to become wealthy.

The major reason is widening inequality. The longer the ladder, the harder the climb. America is now more unequal that it’s been for eighty or more years, with the most unequal distribution of income and wealth of all developed nations. Equal opportunity has become a pipe dream.

Rather than respond with policies to reverse the trend and get us back on the road to equal opportunity and widely-shared prosperity, we’ve spent much of the last three decades doing the opposite.

Taxes have been cut on the rich, public schools have deteriorated, higher education has become unaffordable for many, safety nets have been shredded, and the minimum wage has been allowed to drop 30 percent below where it was in 1968, adjusted for inflation.

Congress has just passed a tiny bipartisan budget agreement, and the Federal Reserve has decided to wean the economy off artificially low interest rates. Both decisions reflect Washington’s (and Wall Street’s) assumption that the economy is almost back on track.

But it’s not at all back on the track it was on more than three decades ago.

It’s certainly not on track for the record 4 million Americans now unemployed for more than six months, or for the unprecedented 20 million American children in poverty (we now have the highest rate of child poverty of all developed nations other than Romania), or for the third of all working Americans whose jobs are now part-time or temporary, or for the majority of Americans whose real wages continue to drop.

How can the economy be back on track when 95 percent of the economic gains since the recovery began in 2009 have gone to the richest 1 percent?

The underlying issue is a moral one: What do we owe one another as members of the same society?

Conservatives answer that question by saying it’s a matter of personal choice – of charitable works, philanthropy, and individual acts of kindness joined in “a thousand points of light.”

But that leaves out what we could and should seek to accomplish together as a society. It neglects the organization of our economy, and its social consequences. It minimizes the potential role of democracy in determining the rules of the game, as well as the corruption of democracy by big money. It overlooks our strivings for social justice.

In short, it ducks the meaning of a decent society.

Last month Pope Francis wondered aloud whether “trickle-down theories, which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness…”. Rush Limbaugh accused the Pope of being a Marxist for merely raising the issue.

But the question of how to bring about greater justice and inclusiveness is as American as apple pie. It has animated our efforts for more than a century – during the Progressive Era, the New Deal, the Great Society, and beyond — to make capitalism work for the betterment of all rather merely than the enrichment of a few.

The supply-side, trickle-down, market-fundamentalist views that took root in America in the early 1980s got us fundamentally off track.

To get back to the kind of shared prosperity and upward mobility we once considered normal will require another era of fundamental reform, of both our economy and our democracy

When Happiness Died in America...

The Gangs of Chicago - Ta-Nehisi Coates, Dec 18 2013, 12:52 PM ET

This from Ta-Nehisi Coates.  Please follow link to original at "The Atlantic".

I spent last week trooping through North Lawndale, on the West Side of Chicago, with the Atlantic's video team. We spent much of Friday with some positive folks over at the Better Boys Foundation (BBF) in K-Town. Then we went outside to get some sense of the neighborhood. I've spent a lot of time in North Lawndale over the past year. It is one of the roughest neighborhoods in Chicago. It is also achingly beautiful. Wide boulevards cut through the neighborhood, the old Sears building looms in the distance, and the great greystones mark many of the blocks. If you stand at the corner of Springfield and Ogden, as I have, right next to the Lawndale Christian Health Center across from Lou Malnati's Pizzeria, you can see the great wealth of Chicago, indeed the great wealth of America, looming over all those who long toiled to make it so.
That Friday, it snowed all day and we walked the blocks, Sam, Kasia, Paul and me, with our guides, running mostly on the odd joy one gets imbibes from the kind of exploration that should be what journalism is about. Towards the end of the afternoon we were standing on a corner shooting one of our hosts. Kids were walking home. We were standing on a street designated as a route for Chicago's Safe Passage program. Volunteers, bundled like scientists of the arctic, stood across the way, nodding as children passed.
The afternoon was quiet. The street-lights were just beginning to flirt. There was no sun. A group of older boys, with no books, came aimlessly down the street. Our host called one of them over and hassled him for not having stopped by BBF recently. BBF is a fortress in a section of this long warred upon section of the city. Kids can go to BBF to read, make beats, make video or play table-top hockey. The conversation between our host and the kid was familiar to me. It was the way men addressed me, as a child, when they were trying to save my life. Aimlessness is the direct path to oblivion for black boys. Occupy the child till somewhere around 25, till he passes out of his hot years, and you may see him actually become something.
Catercorner to the volunteers of Safe Passage, two cops sat in an SUV, snug and warm. Our video team was shooting the conversation between our host and the kid. One of the cops rolled down his window and yelled, "Excuse me you need to take your cameras off this corner. It's Safe Passage."
I didn't know anything about Safe Passage and the law. If the program prohibits video footage on a public street, I haven't been able to document any record of it. But it is police, after all, which is to say humans empowered by the state with the right to mete out violence as he sees fit. We backed up a bit. Our host kept talking. The cops yelled out again. "You need to move, bud. This is Safe Passage."  At this point our host yelled back and contentious back and forth began. Things calmed down when one of our cameramen walked down the street with our host to get a few different shots.
A few months ago, on one of my other trips to Chicago, I was at a dinner with a group of wonks. The wonks were upset that the community, and its appointed represenatives, would not support mandatory minimums for gun charges. I--shamefully I now think--agreed with them. It's not simply that I now think I was wrong, it's that I forgot my role. I mean no disrespect to my hosts. But whenever reformers convene for a nice dinner and good wine, a writer should never allow himself to get too comfortable.
One of my friends, who grew up on the South Side, and was the only other black male at the table, was the only one who disagreed. His distrust of the justice system was too high.
Perhaps this is why:
During his more than 30 years behind bars, Stanley Wrice insisted he was innocent, that Chicago police had beat him until he confessed to a rape he didn't commit. On Wednesday, he walked out of an Illinois prison a free man, thanks to a judge's order that served as a reminder that one of the darkest chapters in the city's history is far from over...
Wrice, who was sentenced to 100 years behind bars for a 1982 sexual assault, is among more than two dozen inmates — most of them black men — who have alleged they were tortured by officers under the command of disgraced former Chicago police Lt. Jon Burge in a scandal that gave the nation's third-largest city a reputation as haven for rogue cops and helped lead to the clearing of Illinois' death row. Some of the prisoners have been freed; some are still behind bars, hoping to get the kind of hearing that Wrice got that eventually led to his freedom.
The scandal of Jon Burge, which will trouble Chicago police for many years to come, is the worst of something many black folks feels when interacting with police in any city. Police address us with aggression, and their default setting is escalation. De-escalation is for black civilians.
When the officer wanted us to move, there was a very easy way to handle the situation. You step our your car. You introduce yourself. You ask questions about what we're doing. If we are breaking the law, you ask us to move. If we are not breaking the law and simply making your life hard, we are likely to move anyway. You are the power.
The cop did not speak to us as though he were human. He spoke to us like a gangster, like he was protecting his block. He was solving no crime. He was protecting no lives. He was holding down his corner. He didn't even bother with a change of uniform. An occupied SUV, parked at an intersection, announces its masters intentions.
It was only a second day there, and our first real one out on the street. It only took that short period to run into trouble. I was worried about the expensive equipment. But it was the conventions of community that protected us. People would walk up and ask us what we were doing. I would tell them we were shooting the neighborhood, or had just finished interviewing some elder--Mr. Ross, Mrs. Witherspoon--and they would smile. "So Mr. Ross is famous, huh?"
No such social lubricant exists for the police.  If you are young and black and live in North Lawndale, if you live in Harlem, if you live in any place where people with power think young black boys aren't being stopped and frisked enough, then what happened to us is not a single stand-out incident. It is who the police are. Indeed they are likely a good deal worse.
What people who have never lived in these neighborhoods must get, is that, like the crooks, killers, and gangs, the police are another violent force that must be negotiated and dealt with. But unlike the gangs, the violence of the police is the violence of the state, and thus unaccountable to North Lawndale. That people who represent North Lawndale laugh at the idea of handing over more tools of incarceration to law enforcement is unsurprising.
As we were finishing up, the officer who yelled at us got out the car and asked for the driver of our vehicle. It wasn't me.
"I happened to notice your sticker is expired," the officer said, handing a ticket to Kasia.
"It's a rental," she replied.
"Well give it to them," he told her walking away. "They'll know what to do with it."
The cop got back in his heated car. On the other corner, Safe Passage stood there, awaiting children, huddling in the cold.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Bill Moyers Essay: The End Game for Democracy

Here, "Blues For Us Working Folk"  --  by Bill Moyers

Thursday, December 12, 2013

When Charity Begins at Home (Particularly the Homes of the Wealthy)

From Robert Reich - follow link to original

When Charity Begins at Home (Particularly the Homes of the Wealthy)

Thursday, December 12, 2013
It’s charity time, and not just because the holiday season reminds us to be charitable. As the tax year draws to a close, the charitable tax deduction beckons.
America’s wealthy are its largest beneficiaries. According to the Congressional Budget Office, $33 billion of last year’s $39 billion in total charitable deductions went to the richest 20 percent of Americans, of whom the richest 1 percent reaped the lion’s share.
The generosity of the super-rich is sometimes proffered as evidence they’re contributing as much to the nation’s well-being as they did decades ago when they paid a much larger share of their earnings in taxes. Think again.
Undoubtedly, super-rich family foundations, such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, are doing a lot of good. Wealthy philanthropic giving is on the rise, paralleling the rise in super-rich giving that characterized the late nineteenth century, when magnates (some called them “robber barons”) like Andrew Carnegie and John D. Rockefeller established philanthropic institutions that survive today.
But a large portion of the charitable deductions now claimed by America’s wealthy are for donations to culture palaces – operas, art museums, symphonies, and theaters – where they spend their leisure time hobnobbing with other wealthy benefactors.
Another portion is for contributions to the elite prep schools and universities they once attended or want their children to attend. (Such institutions typically give preference in admissions, a kind of affirmative action, to applicants and “legacies” whose parents have been notably generous.)
Harvard, Yale, Princeton, and the rest of the Ivy League are worthy institutions, to be sure, but they’re not known for educating large numbers of poor young people. (The University of California at Berkeley, where I teach, has more poor students eligible for Pell Grants than the entire Ivy League put together.) And they’re less likely to graduate aspiring social workers and legal defense attorneys than aspiring investment bankers and corporate lawyers.
I’m all in favor of supporting fancy museums and elite schools, but face it: These aren’t really charities as most people understand the term. They’re often investments in the life-styles the wealthy already enjoy and want their children to have as well. Increasingly, being rich in America means not having to come across anyone who’s not.
They’re also investments in prestige – especially if they result in the family name engraved on a new wing of an art museum, symphony hall, or ivied dorm.
It’s their business how they donate their money, of course. But not entirely. As with all tax deductions, the government has to match the charitable deduction with additional tax revenues or spending cuts; otherwise, the budget deficit widens.
In economic terms, a tax deduction is exactly the same as government spending. Which means the government will, in effect, hand out $40 billion this year for “charity” that’s going largely to wealthy people who use much of it to enhance their lifestyles.
To put this in perspective, $40 billion is more than the federal government will spend this year on Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (what’s left of welfare), school lunches for poor kids, and Head Start, put together.
Which raises the question of what the adjective “charitable” should mean. I can see why a taxpayer’s contribution to, say, the Salvation Army should be eligible for a charitable tax deduction. But why, exactly, should a contribution to the Guggenheim Museum or to Harvard Business School?
A while ago, New York’s Lincoln Center held a fund-raising gala supported by the charitable contributions of hedge fund industry leaders, some of whom take home $1 billion a year. I may be missing something but this doesn’t strike me as charity, either. Poor New Yorkers rarely attend concerts at Lincoln Center.
What portion of charitable giving actually goes to the poor? The Washington Post’s Dylan Matthews looked into this, and the best he could come up with was a 2005 analysis by Google and Indiana University’s Center for Philanthropy showing that even under the most generous assumptions only about a third of “charitable” donations were targeted to helping the poor.
At a time in our nation’s history when the number of poor Americans continues to rise, when government doesn’t have the money to do what’s needed, and when America’s very rich are richer than ever, this doesn’t seem right.
If Congress ever gets around to revising the tax code, it might consider limiting the charitable deduction to real charities.

Anti-Gay Ssempa Promotes Racist, Anti-Semitic Video

Here's something "interesting"  --  follow link to original.

As usual they ALWAYS get back to THE JEWS.

Can't we EVER get our shit together?

Anti-Gay Ssempa Promotes Racist, Anti-Semitic Video
Submitted by Peter Montgomery
on Thursday, 12/12/2013 4:23 pm

Martin Ssempa, the virulently anti-gay Ugandan pastor praised by American Religious Right leaders, is an active Twitter user. Among his recent gems, he has denounced the phrase “gay people” as an “intellectual fraud.” (He prefers, “people who ‘do’ sodom vice acts.”) He tweeted at Rev. Jesse Jackson that “Equality was hijacked by Gays.” He griped about marriage equality in Hawaii and praised anti-equality protesters in Taiwan.
Ssempa also promotes the work of other professional haters. He recently put in a plug for anti-gay extremist Scott Lively’s book “Redeeming the Rainbow.” And on December 6 he repeatedly tweeted a link to a video “lecture” by Ayo Kimathi, promoter of a militant black supremacist website called “War on the Horizon.”

Months earlier, Kimathi had been placed on leave from his Department of Homeland Security job after the Southern Poverty Law Center exposed the hate-filled thrust of his website. In mid-November, Alex Seitz-Wald of National Journal published an article, “DHS Still Hasn’t Fired Black Supremacist Who Called for Mass Murder of Whites.”

Coincidentally, Ssempa’s multiple December 6 tweets promoting Kimathi’s “Effeminization of the African Male Pt 1 – History of Homosexuality,” came on the last day Kimathi was a DHS employee.

Perhaps Ssempa was attracted by the virulently anti-European tone of Kimathi’s presentation. After all, Ssempa has been tweeting angrily about Europeans promoting LGBT equality as a human rights issue. Sample tweet: “Who gives the European the right to decide for Africans, that a human (‘sodom) vice is now human right?

The video Ssempa promoted is a lecture by Kimathi in which he explains that the term “white sex” is a catch-all for rape, perversion, homosexuality, pedophilia, and bestiality.  He says it is a “filthy notion” that all people are alike under the skin. Kimathi describes Christopher Columbus as a “flaming homosexual,” child molester, and “small hat.” Kimathi says “small hat” refers to “whites who commonly refer to themselves as Jews.”  They are, he says, “the worst of the worst of the Europeans. The worst white group of all white groups is these whites who call themselves Jews.”

Denial of Medicaid Expansion Is a Job Killer

This from "The Rude Pundit" - please read.  Follow link to original.

Denial of Medicaid Expansion Is a Job Killer:
(This one is clean for the kiddies.)

A just-released report from the Commonwealth Fund shows how ideology has trumped common sense when it comes to the states that have refused to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act (aka "Pearl Harbor + The Civil War x Pol Pot to the power of Manson"). For, if you will remember, what the cruel Obama administration wishes to do is give states 100% of the funding for the first three years and, phased down over five years, about 90% thereafter to get health coverage for their not-quite-as-desperate poor, those in that not-exactly sweet spot between current Medicaid guidelines and qualifying for the insurance exchanges.

What are Bobby Jindal, Rick Scott, and other GOP governors forgoing? "The value of new federal funds flowing annually to states that choose to participate in the Medicaid expansion in 2022 will be, on average, about 2.35 times as great as expected federal highway funds going to state governments in that year and over one-quarter as large as expected defense procurement contracts to states."

How about putting that in dollars? So, for instance, the Rude Pundit's stupid home state of Louisiana would, if Jindal wasn't such a jerk about it, get $2.3 billion in 2022 for Medicaid expansion. For highway funds, the state gets $900 million. One of those numbers is bigger.

In that fantasy year of 2022, it would cost the state $280 million to cover over 240,000 Louisianians. In other words, the state would get roughly $9 for every $1 it spent. In otherer words, as a report in February from Family USA, the state is saying, "Hasta la vista" to jobs, too.

Remember how much Republicans want to talk about jobs except when it comes to actually creating jobs? Remember how Ted Cruz goes on and on about the "job-killing" Obamacare? Yeah, not so much.

Because, see, expansion of Medicaid in Louisiana is projected to create 15,600 jobs. Why? Because there's a couple of billion dollars involved. And what's even awesomer is that a chunk of that money will be spent on wages. The Rude Pundit is no high-falutin' economist, but he's pretty sure that means the wages will be taxed and spent, which is taxed also. That seems like a pretty sweet deal all around.

Now, can someone explain how this is any different, truly, than, say, a defense contract? Because it's all just federal money heading to localities that then turn around and create jobs doing something for the citizens of the nation.

Why do you think GOP governors like Rick Snyder and John Kasich have jumped on the expansion train? Compassion? Hell no. It's for that cash infusion at a time when the irrational budget sequester has circumcised the budgets of the states with no hope in the near future of spending returning to its pre-Tea Party levels.

Bottom line: If someone offered you $900 for the sweet price of $100, you'd be a total jackass not to take it. Thus we know why Gov. Bobby Jindal won't.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

"The Wisdom Of The East"

By the way, to all who still babble on about "THE WISDOM OF THE EAST"  ---  what do all y'all think about the Indian Supreme Court re-criminalizing homosexual behavior??

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

James McMurtry "We Can't Make It Here"

James McMurtry "Choctaw Bingo"

once again

Once again I searched the far flung interwebs, those famed intertubes, to bring you fresh news.  I actually found it.  After being sick, after barfing, retching, rolfing, pukeing, I decided that THERE'S SOME STRANGE SHIT GOING ON.

Over and out.