December 4, 2007

maybe they found their voice while out shopping
the price was hard to beat

Enrico David, Bubble Protest, 2005

* New York Times. excerpt:

"Most of the time we pretend it’s not there: The staggering financial cost of the war in Iraq, which continues to soar, unchecked, like a rocket headed toward the moon and beyond."
"A report prepared for the Democratic majority on the Joint Economic Committee of the House and Senate warns that without a significant change of course in Iraq, the long-term cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan could head into the vicinity of $3.5 trillion. The vast majority of those expenses would be for Iraq.

"Priorities don’t get much more twisted. A country that can’t find the money to provide health coverage for its children, or to rebuild the city of New Orleans, or to create a first-class public school system, is flushing whole generations worth of cash into the bottomless pit of a failed and endless war."
"President Bush’s formal funding requests for Iraq have already exceeded $600 billion. In addition to that, the report offers estimates of the war’s 'hidden costs' from its beginning to 2017: the long-term costs of treating the wounded and disabled; interest and other costs associated with borrowing to finance the war; the money needed to repair or replace military equipment; the increased costs of military recruitment and retention; and such difficult to gauge but very real costs as the loss of productivity from those who have been killed or wounded.

"What matters more than the precision of these estimates (Republicans are not happy with them) is the undeniable fact that the costs associated with the Iraq war are huge and carry with them enormous societal consequences.

"Far from seeking a halt to the war, the Bush administration has been considering a significant U.S. military presence in Iraq that would last for many years, if not decades. There has been very little public discussion and no thorough analysis of the overall implications of such a policy.

"What is indisputable, however, is that everything associated with the Iraq war has cost vastly more than the administration’s absurdly sunny forecasts. The direct appropriations are already roughly 10 times the amount of the administration’s original estimates of the entire cost of the war."
"Youngsters who were just starting high school when the U.S. invaded Iraq are in college now. Their children, yet unborn, will be called on to fork over tax money to continue paying for the war.

"Seriously. How long do we want this madness to last?"

* Village Voice review of buddy Marc Master's new book: No Wave. excerpt:

"[While] No Wave, Marc Masters's history of the punk offshoot (due out in late December), shares some thematic territory with Court's book—the cast of characters has a great deal of overlap—his book is more tightly focused. It's hardly narrow, however, given how stylistically slippery No Wave is to define. While New York City's contributions to punk have been endlessly dissected, the No Wave scene has never gotten the overview it deserved—until now.

"From the beginning, No Wave was an anti-movement set up in stark opposition to punk's tired reliance on conventional three-chord riffs. Stylistically exploiting the frisson between crudity and sophistication, groups like Suicide, DNA, and Ut reflected the city's moral chaos back on itself, turning art into shock therapy. (TV Party's Glenn O'Brien once quipped that No Wave was "a Gong Show for geniuses.")

"From such assaultive beginnings, No Wave proved to be a complicated, elastic, genre-hopping beast. Masters, who writes for U.K. magazine The Wire, traces its wayward experiments and stylistic switchbacks with critical engagement and thoughtfulness. Drawing on detailed interviews with many of the scene's key players (Lydia Lunch, Arto Lindsay, and Glenn Branca, among others), as well as an exhaustive amount of archival material, Masters brings this secret history to vivid life. Even if your interest in punk history is merely casual, the treasure trove of rare ephemera reprinted here—club flyers, ticket stubs, band photos, yellowing 'zines—is fascinating; much of it has a bracing rawness that hasn't faded one iota.

"No Wave's influence has proven more long-lasting than the movement itself: Its blend of twitchy disco, corrosive noise, and lo-fi recording techniques is very au courant. (Groups as diverse as Erase Errata, LCD Soundsystem, and Lightning Bolt all owe fealty.) Thanks to reissues, however, much of No Wave's discography is newly available. Ahead of its time? Looks like that time is now."

* "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources." --Albert Einstein


Anonymous Anonymous said...

thought you might find this of interest* has one of those counters that ticks off the amount of monies spent by the military/US government every second ($1500 - $3000).

Was at a bar last night and heard two veterans (guessing Korean War though could have been 'Nam vets since they're beginning to age) complaining about U.S. economic policies (forein aid etc...) and how we're indebt to everybody.

When I interrupted them and gave them the web address plus the financial guesstimate one replied, "that's not so much." the other old guy said to take the scrap piece of paper away since none of them had a computer. Needless to say, I left the paper at the bar, tipped the barkeep (another story) and left.

Um, no, neither of three of us bought the other a beer.

*sorry if that was a long-winded entry.

11:50 AM  

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