December 11, 2007

we're special in other ways
ways our mothers appreciate

Lynne Cohen, Untitled, 2007

* Testimony of Ed Sanders from the Chicago 7 trial. excerpt:

"MR. WEINGLASS: Do you recall what it was that brought you from Jackson County, Missouri to New York?

Sanders: Reading Allen Ginsberg's "Howl" in shop class in high school in 1957.

MR. WEINGLASS: Mr. Sanders, could you indicate to the Court and to the jury what your present occupation is?
Sanders: I am a poet, songwriter, leader of a rock and roll band, publisher, editor, recording artist, peace-creep"

MR. WEINGLASS: Now, directing your attention to the evening of January 4, 1968, do you recall where you were on that evening?

Sanders: Yes. I went to Jerry Rubin's house in New York City to get briefed on a meeting that had taken place.

MR. WEINGLASS: What took place at that meeting you had with Jerry Rubin?

Sanders: Well, first we had a period of meditation in front of his picture of Chi on the wall for a half hour.

THE COURT: Picture of whom?

Sanders: Che, Che Guevara. Che, the great revolutionary leader.

THE COURT: Oh. Would you spell it for the reporter.

Sanders: C-H-E. Then we practiced for about a half hour toughening up our feet walking around in Baggies full of ice, and then Jerry informed me about the circumstances of the meeting that had taken place, forming the Youth International Party, and that it was decided to hold a free rock festival in Chicago during the time of the Democratic National Convention, and that the convening would be a convening of all people interested in the new politics, guerilla theater, rock and roll, the convening of the hemp horde from all over the various tribes in the United States. I was asked by Jerry if I would help coordinate, since I knew the major rock groups in the United States, if I would contact them and ask them if they would play. I said I would be happy to and that I would proceed forthwith in contacting these major rock groups, and that I did.
"MR. SCHULTZ: In Mr. Stahl's office on August 7, did you hear Hoffman say that the Festival of Life that you were discussing with Deputy Mayor Stahl and Al Baugher would include nude-ins at the beaches, public fornications, body painting, and discussions of draft and draft evasion? Did you hear that?

Sanders: Nudism, draft counseling, the beach thing, but he didn't use the word 'public fornication.'

MR. SCHULTZ: He didn't use that word. What word did he use in its place?

Sanders: Probably fuck-in."
"MR. SCHULTZ: While you were writing this document, you were also listening to what was going on at the meeting, weren't you?

Sanders: I was keeping an ear into it.

MR. SCHULTZ: Will you read number four of that document, please.

Sanders: Psychedelic long-haired mutant-jissomed peace leftists will consort with known dope fiends, spilling out onto the sidewalks in pornape disarray each afternoon."

MR. SCHULTZ: Would you read eight, please?

Sanders: 'Universal syrup day will be held on Wednesday when a movie will be shown at Soldiers Field in which Hubert Humphrey confesses to Allen Ginsberg of his secret approval of anal intercourse.'

MR. SCHULTZ: Will you read nine, please.

Sanders: 'There will be public fornication whenever and wherever there is an aroused appendage and willing apertures'

MR. SCHULTZ: Did you read thirteen?

Sanders: You want thirteen read? 'Two-hundred thirty rebel cocksmen under secret vows are on 24-hour alert to get the pants of the daughters and wives and kept women of the convention delegates.'"

* Clusterfuck Nation. excerpt:

"The clowns in charge of things understandably feel that they have to do something -- or pretend to -- in the face of what is shaping up to be not just a credit 'crunch,' but a potentially lethal illness in the credit system per se -- that is, in the very process of trading in paper that claims to represent faith in the future creation of wealth. That process underlies all of modern finance. Investments, currencies, economies, and nations hang in the balance.

"President Bush, seeming very much the clown-in-chief, led the way last week by proposing a mortgage crisis bail-out that would appear to have no chance whatsoever of working as advertised. He called it, arrestingly, the Hope Now Alliance. It blithely assumed that those 'servicing' mortgages -- that is, collecting the monthly payments -- have the ability to suspend scheduled upward re-sets of adjustable mortgages for five years for certain select homeowner payees -- so that theoretically said homeowners could avoid foreclosure.

"What might have worked in 1934, when the originators of mortgages were local banks that also "serviced" them (i.e. collected the monthly payments) is unlikely to avail today since the mortgages have been sold off in bunches to pension funds, hedge funds, money markets, and foreign investment funds -- none of which have an interest or the ability to renegotiate loans with millions of schlemiels from Cleveland to Denver to Fresno -- while the companies 'servicing' these contacts are mere errand boys, with no say over the terms of anything they collect on."
"Anyway, this argument is academic because the Hope Now Alliance is just a political sham. The purpose of it is not to save the hapless occupants of over-leveraged houses, but first to buy a little more time so that the worker bees in the financial industry can justify awarding each other multi-million-dollar Christmas bonus packages, and second, to postpone the 'workout' of all this bad investment as far into the future as possible.

"I have been wrong in the past about timing things, but I don't see any way on God's green earth that such a workout of mis-investment can be put off until somebody else is sworn in to lead the government in January 2009. The capital allocation system is already listing and groaning like a leaky ship in a hurricane.

"Maybe all the players really know that keeping the ship afloat until Christmas is really the best they can hope for. Christmas means a lot in this country. It represents all Americans' old hope that miracles can happen. Bums turn out to be Santa Claus. Old curmudgeons are transformed overnight into loving uncles. Angels save us when we jump despairingly into icey torrents. And Goldman Sachs executives pass out multi-million-dollar checks to the wizards who 'innovated' an ingenious way for the rest of their country to commit financial suicide."

* Dylan Stubs: one fan's collection of Dylan ticket stubs, from the early 1960s to now.

* "I don’t know where jazz is going. Maybe it’s going to hell. You can’t make anything go anywhere. It just happens." -- Thelonious Monk


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