Indianapolis 500: 2024 notes

I now watch the Indianapolis 500 annually. That event far eclipses anything NASCAR has to offer. The political purpose of the race is to promote nationalism & militarism on Memorial Day weekend. I try to block the politics out and focus on the sporting event, but that’s somewhat impossible in racing. All this high-performance machinery was developed by (& for) the military, and professional circuit racing is an ancillary of this.

People love racing, and that isn’t going to change, but I watch these spectacles to observe the spectacle in all its glory & decadence, not because I love motorsports. Going fast doesn’t appeal to me, but I do appreciate the innovation and what it can do for humanity– if it’s equally shared. When the sponsors & mouthpieces for the Indianapolis 500 talk about “tradition & respect,” they use the same tone & moral authority that Genocide Joe & university officials use to talk down to student protesters before sending in the police. With that said, it was a great race and congratulations to the winning driver & team.

As for the NBC broadcast: I love Mike Tirico, he’s the best (with Jim Nantz) so you hardly notice his corporate shilling. Danica Patrick is now becoming stiff. NBC needs her for sure, but she asks fake questions with fake interest & name-drops too much. Jimmie Johnson, who had to leave early for the Charlotte 600, wasn’t fooled. She does much better when the race starts as that’s her passion & aptitude. You can see that Danica Patrick lives entirely in an elite bubble, surrounded by security & handlers, even during the broadcast with all those fans there. Class divisions are out in the open & in your face every year at the Indianapolis 500.

One of my favorite broadcast moments was pre-race when NASCAR’s Jeff Burton was trying to explain how important it was for Kyle Larson to run in the Charlotte 600 that evening. “It could affect his playoff points,” etc. All complete nonsense, as Kyle Larson has won a race which locks him into the playoffs, and from there it’s about finishing well & winning in each round, not “bonus points” going in. I think Jeff Burton’s idea was for Kyle Larson to skip the Indy 500 when the rains came. Hilarious NASCAR stupidity & arrogance, promoting the idea that the Charlotte 600 is more important than the Indianapolis 500 to Kyle Larson. Kim Coon (whom I love) stood next to Jeff Burton, but stayed quiet on that…

Storms held off the race (and pre-race ceremonies) in Indianapolis for ~4 hours, so it’s a long day just to watch. “Adjust your schedule and do something else” is my attitude when that happens to an event I want to watch on TV. When the race finally got going, it was a mess for the first third or so. Danica Patrick correctly stated that too many drivers appeared to be too caffeinated coming out of the rain delay. For me it was like a ballplayer popping too many greenies, and then having to wait out a rain delay when wired to go. Adderall (or an equivalent) is the PED choice of professional race car drivers.

I’m getting ready for bed, and I decide to flip on Fox one last time. It’s total darkness in Charlotte and NASCAR has their jet-dryer trucks mopping up the track after a spring deluge. No sun to dry the cold, wet track; so Mike Joy & Kevin Harvick (love them both) are talking about the Ricky Stenhouse Jr/Kyle Busch team fight last week and how NASCAR promoted it to the point where no one remembers who won the million dollar All-Star race. I’m thinking, “They’ve run over half the race, why haven’t they called it? They can’t get this track dry! No bleeping way I’m waiting for the ‘re-start’ they are promising fans. Christopher Bell is the winner of the rain-shortened Charlotte 600.” Click.

I wake up Monday morning, and check ESPN dot com to learn they called the race sometime after. This was all about Kyle Larsen getting into his car and driving laps at Charlotte. That (& the fight) are the only things NASCAR old-guard cared about promoting on Memorial Day weekend. Having some “sports sense” will tell you when a story is over and thus spare you the agony of staying up late for nothing, such as the finish of the 2024 Charlotte 600 with Kyle Larson running laps.

Kyle Larson’s performance illustrated the difference in competitiveness between Indycar & NASCAR. If you make a mistake which sends you to the back, you are finished in Indycar. In NASCAR, Kyle Busch & Denny Hamlin are regularly caught speeding on pit road, etc, and are sent to the back of the field, but they always get right back up front after not-too-long because their cars are so much faster than two-thirds of the grid.

At Indy yesterday, we saw a few engines blowout & some rookie mistakes in the back, but you had to have a great car with not too many driver mistakes just to be top-20. Kyle Larson was busted for pit road speeding and that took him from top-5-ish, to a lap down and he finished 18th. Actually, it was a very good performance for a rookie at the Indianapolis 500, but NASCAR is humbled by it. He’ll try again next year. NASCAR hates it on a certain level which I’ve explained, but they also recognize how it helps them so there’s nothing they can do to stop him.

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December 8, 2023

How do US representatives who tried to overthrow the US Constitution avoid jail & all accountability for their criminal actions? It’s because Joe Biden & the Democrats have covered for them in the name of ruling class “bipartisanship.” Democrats enable fascists while attacking & censoring true leftists. That’s how Biden’s proxy war in the Ukraine (and now ethnic cleansing of Palestines in Gaza) are being sustained, despite their unpopularity among American working people & youth.

Both Democrats & Republicans agree we need to be at war with China over Taiwan sometime in the near future. Obama/Biden ‘pivoted to China’ after the “war on terror” under Bush/Cheney became an untenable US foreign policy doctrine to sell to the American people.

Donald Trump pushed past that on the far right, by reneging on the long agreed-upon doctrine of One China, which was Richard Nixon’s foreign policy baby to open up China to US business interests. It got him re-elected in 1972 despite strong anti-war & youth opposition on Vietnam, and capitalism flourished through the 1970’s into the early 2000’s because of it.

US recognition of One China was a conscious ruling class policy of economic globalization to lower costs for American corporations and make them more profitable. It brought humanity the internet, mp3s & social media– but it has wrecked our planet with pollution, deforestation & runaway global warming which isn’t being addressed at all. The US military can’t win a world war for many reasons, foremost are: 1) Russia & China (and Israel [!!]) have nuclear weapons and will use them if their existence is seriously threatened, and 2) US businesses depend on the world for supply chains & cheap labor.

Cheap oil means affordable global transportation, and that’s what all the fighting is about in the Middle East and why the Zionist Netanyahu regime of fascists are always proclaimed to be inseparable partners in US foreign policy, which is imperialism. That’s what the IDF’s ethic cleansing of Palestinians in Gaza is about. To Zionists. a multi-ethnic state living in peace is out of the question. This racist ruling ideology is opposed by many Jews in Israel, the US & beyond, but this fact is never mentioned in the American fake media.

Zionists are today’s Nazi’s, as is Volodymyr Zelensky in Kiev, whose fascist cabal are the direct political descendants of Nazis under Adolph Hitler. Zelensky’s war over Crimea with Russia is unwinnable, yet Joe Biden & his CIA Democrat cohorts keep doubling down on it. Republicans will hold up funding in Congress for awhile (when it is politically convenient) to get more anti-immigrant militarization for the US-Mexico border.

Canada is our friendly neighbor to the North, historically a safe haven for Nazis who fled Europe after WW2. Death squad democracies under Truman (Dem) & Eisenhower (Rep) administrations in Latin America harbored WW2 Nazis under US protectorate. They were used to teach the CIA their methods for becoming known globally as Murder, Inc.

This capitalist economic boom period ends with WW3, unless the youth & working class unite to overthrow capitalism before it’s too late. Workers of the world, unite– by joining the Socialist Equality Party in whatever country you live, or form one if there isn’t one yet. The SEP is the only political party of Trotskyism, which is the true socialism of Karl Marx & Friedrich Engels.

All other ‘left’ variants, from the DSA & the labor union bureaucracies, are the fake left. So is PBS, CNN, the New York Times, Washington Post & Rolling Stone magazine. Pussy Riot is fake, they reek of CIA provocation as its members have been designated “foreign agents” by Russian president Vladimir Putin. Hillary Clinton was Pussy Riot’s biggest fan back in the day. Pop music & entertainment have been thoroughly fake since American Idol & 9/11.

For publishing these truths, you are branded a ‘class reductionist antisemite’ by the fake left, which is well-funded by the CIA Democrats. The Black Lives Matter & MeToo campaigns also originate with the CIA Democrats.

MAGA Trumpists are the ultra-nationalists on the far right. This means white supremacists, holocaust deniers, anti-vaxers, Christian fundamentalists, and other reactionary variants of militia anarchism. They all prefer to let their fists & guns do their talking when it comes to politics, since their limited talking points never hold up.

Historically speaking, December 8 is the day after the date that lives in infamy. What was the American workers’ mood on December 8, 1941? It was anger, which was exploited to the benefit of the American ruling elite. Working kids got drafted and sent overseas to fight & die, while rich kids got deferred. Just like Bill Clinton and just like Donald Trump. They’re all cowards. Enabled bullies, actually.

The danger is this sociopathic class controls all the levers of power, and Trump has fascist shock troops at his behest & command, which the world saw on January 6, 2021. That was a coup attempt by Donald Trump & his fascist cabal which extended to all branches of government & the military/police, and intended to establish a presidential dictatorship.

This threat to human democracy needs to be overwhelmingly crushed by an internationally united working class & youth. That’s the path to victory and saving our planet (& ourselves!) from self-inflicted destruction. The work is in party building and the development of political conscious & united leadership of the working class. Social media is what unites us, so all platforms must be democratized to be de-Nazified.

Leading antisemite Elon Musk bought Twitter last year and changed its name to X. He’s had to cash in more than a few bitcoins to do it, but for Musk it’s worth it. Elon Musk is a Nazi, who pretends he’s a prodigy. He’s acts as if he’s intelligent, but he’s a proven philistine– even in his so-called fields of expertise. Elon Musk needed a big platform he could dominate on every level, so he overpaid for Twitter, which was estimated at around $12B, but Musk was forced to pay $44B.

Elon Musk had to recoup lost value somehow, so he has encouraged his fascist followers by inviting Donald Trump back onto the platform– which the Donald refused. Trump now rants exclusively on his Truth Social platform. Trump, Inc is always lying, ripping people off, and going bankrupt– that’s the Trump business cycle. His hardcore supporters are on Parlor & Breitbart spreading their filth.

A sign of global financial turmoil is the crypto bubble being re-inflated, with bitcoin now at ~$44K after starting 2023 at ~$17K. Bitcoin as ‘digital gold” is a myth, but it’s being hyped as a ‘safe haven’ & ‘good investment’ in the face of weakening currencies. Crypto has to get past SBF/FTX  & CZ/Binance before Elon Musk can sell his crypto garbage as good coin again. The bitcoin market is being pumped again, for sure, but there is still strong opposition among powerful US business & political interests. As mentioned before, US intelligence is the Black Hand in crypto.

Finally, December 8, 1980 was the day John Lennon was murdered in NYC. Beatles fans around the world mourn this tragic anniversary every year by trying to celebrate what John Lennon’s existence brought to humanity. Pop culture & art changed with the Beatles, and the idea that there are deranged people out there who want to kill that is deeply offensive to anyone who thinks & feels.

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Sam Bankman-Fried trial update: Where’s the money?

The SBF trial finished last week with the boy wonder himself testifying, as his attorney Mark Cohen comfortably led the defendant through a benign & naive narrative they are trying to spin to the judge & jury. Below is a courtroom sketch of Mark Cohen, the completely incompetent, ineffective & overpaid defense lawyer for SBF, as depicted by CoinDesk courtroom artist/reporter Nik De.

The SBF trial was paused Monday through Wednesday last week (Oct 23-25), because Mark Cohen was testifying with lots of press, cameras, reporters, etc, in another Manhattan courtroom– specifically in the Donald Trump v. New York fraud trial. That is a civil trial in its punishment & compensation phase, as Donald Trump has already been found guilty of fraud.

DOJ prosecution cross-examination in the criminal trial of SBF is expected to begin Monday (tomorrow), with the trial possibly ending next week, allowing the jury to deliberate a verdict. If convicted, the judge is going to come down hard on SBF, with an appeal highly unlikely to change anything, meaning SBF will need a Presidential pardon to get out of jail. SBF spread a LOT of money around into dark places and Trump loves NFTs, so it could happen. The other murky, unanswered question is, “Did SBF already cut a secret deal?” Its answer is unknowable to the public, but known in inner ruling circles.

Trump pardoned dozens of criminals (pic above) at the end of his Presidency simply because they paid his under-the-table extortion money, or they pledged their undying loyalty to the Donald.

Over $8 billion in customer funds is still missing from the FTX/Alameda fraud. Everyone in crypto assumes SBF has the stolen crypto stashed away in hidden wallet(s) somewhere in dark cyberspace. SBF was allowed plenty of time to do that– as FTX collapsed last November, as he was extradited back to the US from the Bahamas, and surely after he was allowed more-than-generous bail terms by a lenient Manhattan judge who let SBF stay with his parents in Palo Alto, California and work online, even after repeated violations of his bail terms.

Obviously US intelligence was monitoring & scrutinizing SBF’s online activities, but none of this (or its findings & conclusions) have ever been revealed to the public. What was SBF doing online during those months he was out on bail?

Without question, SBF moved massive crypto transfers from the time he was held by the Bahamian police, up until his bail being revoked after he published the personal diary of key DOJ witness (& former girlfriend) Caroline Ellison, who was SBF’s partner in crime. She pleaded guilty, as did a few others at FTX/Alameda, so their prison sentences will be much lighter. But the question still remains, “Where’s the money, SBF?”

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What is a guitar player?

It’s not such a simple question because so much more is involved besides just how well you play. There are so many styles around the world that are respected & influential that much must be considered on the subject. I’m going to speak from a rock perspective, which is somewhat limited, but necessary since there are so many rock guitar players as it’s the dominant modern style. Classical & flamenco styles are certainly just as valid.

As I written before, rock music needs more bass players. If you are enthusiastic, yet average at guitar, seriously consider a switch to bass. By becoming merely competent on bass, your bandmate options will increase exponentially– I can assure you. If you are more creatively inclined as a songwriter, yet have difficulty singing & playing guitar at the same time, then bass is the place.

With that said, if you are committed to the six-string guitar, then learn how to play your instrument well. There are different roles & expectations for pure guitar players, as compared to singer/guitar players. Since I’m the latter, I’ll be discussing from that perspective.

Pure guitar players like Tony Iommi, Angus Young, Alex Lifeson, Eddie Van Halen, Dave Murray, Brad Gillis, Joe Satraini, etc, can do EVERYTHING. They can play lightning fast & change tempos fluidly with overwhelming technique. If you’re in a serious rock band, THAT’S what you want on guitar. It REALLY helps if they are part of the songwriting process.

Pure players who lack songwriting creativity are severely limited because as a band you NEED great riff ideas from your guitar player. These impressive technical (yet creatively impoverished) guitar players often become session aces or tour replacements for major acts in need. They get a lot of corporate work.

For singer/guitar players such as myself, the expectations & responsibilities are different. You’re more of a rhythm player as a singer, so you have to be solid yet make it look easy because everyone is watching you, but most are concentrating on your vocals & overall stage presence. But every pure guitar player (and other serious musician) in the audience will also be rating your technical playing, showmanship & charisma, song content, stage awareness, equipment, set-up, etc. Every fan wants to see a star, and every musician wants to work with a star because they all believe THEY are stars.

Depending on whether there is a lead guitarist or not, a singer/guitarist may also have to be proficient at soloing. That’s the part which most singer/guitarists struggle, the point in the song where they aren’t singing and they have to perform at a higher level on guitar. They won’t be able to play like the guys I’ve listed above, so what can be done?

I started using a slide on my pinky finger when I realized that I was going to have to be a solo artist. That means you have to do everything well at all times, otherwise you will suck & the crowd will know it instantly. A slide gives your guitar playing an entirely different dimension and allows lots of creative uses without having to be fast & flashy. It’s not an overused crutch, like the capo (both pictured below).

I don’t try to play like Duane Allman or any of those other classic bluesmen. They’re too good. Mississippi Delta bottleneck blues is where slide guitar started, and if you listen to these early recordings from the early masters, they were very creative & free in their use of a slide. This slide style reverberated through post-war electric blues. Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band’s used multiple slide guitars with all kinds of crazy patterns. George Thorogood is a great modern rock slide guitar player. If you absorb all that on record, you can figure out something new on slide. My approach is to use the slide as a scrape for punk effect, verses the glistening leads of Mick Taylor, etc.

Jimi Hendrix is the standard for the singer/guitar player style. NOBODY could play like that, while writing & singing such amazing songs. Jimi Hendrix could do it live, and in the studio. He could be a show all by himself or in a great band. He was a natural in an era that exploded him into popular consciousness, but of course, it was the excess of this era that killed him. Jimi Hendrix was a prodigy, perhaps the best ever while he lasted, but he’s not a model to follow because his excessive hippie lifestyle will kill you at a young age like it did him.

Same with Kurt Cobain, no matter how you feel about the circumstances around his death in 1994. If you can’t survive, then you don’t leave much of a blueprint for young fans to follow. Maybe that’s their idea, they DON’T want to be followed, but then why become a performer in the first place? These are the tough responsibilities that Frank Black, J Mascis, Thurston Moore, Billy Corgan take on as the LEADERS of their respective bands. You have to be be an effective & easy player, while singing the great songs you wrote. You have to be able to lead everyone during the formative creative process, in the studio, and then on stage.

This gets to the inexact science & sticky question of who is replaceable in a band? Example: everyone knows Aerosmith because of Steven Tyler & Joe Perry, so they are irreplaceable. The rest are integral, but replaceable in the band’s legacy stage which is about being able to get through lucrative tours, not making new music.

Devo, Cheap Trick, the Meat Puppets, etc, are serious bands who still tour successfully (young energetic capacity audiences) with replacement drummers. Their original drummers were essential band members during their prime, but replaceable as they evolved into legacy acts. It’s usually the lead singer and the songwriter(s) who are indispensable throughout a band’s existence. Rush couldn’t continue after drummer/songwriter Neil Peart retired from music & subsequently passed away. The Rolling Stones probably won’t tour again after the death of Charlie Watts. They were indispensable.

I’m making broad generalities for illustrative purposes. The original band member is ALWAYS better than replacements, as they were part of the original creative process & cool vibe that fans identify with. Unfortunately, industry machinery takes its toll on musicians… As mentioned above, replacements are mostly session musicians by trade, industry veterans who never had much creativity in their prime.

Replacements are sometimes now a son (or other family member) of the band leader, etc. It takes a lot of chops & dedication to fill in for any major act, on any instrument. You’re expected to be solid, while in the background, unassumingly carrying the headliners everyone paid to see. That’s a tough gig for little bread, and only a limited number of musicians are good enough (and have their head on straight enough) to do it. There is some audience respect due for that, but the bigger point is too many replacements will diminish any band into an empty shell of itself.

How much would a young kid pay to see Def Leppard, Mötley Crüe, Poison & KISS at a festival? No more than $10-20 in 2023, and that’s being generous. Too many replacement members, etc. How much would a young kid pay to see Jane’s Addiction, the Pixies, the Smashing Pumpkins & Dinosaur Jr at a festival? Anywhere from $200-300+. Why is that?

It’s because hair metal was all about good times & partying, which never last. That’s why hair metal acts fare so poorly in this 21-century era of climate change, COVID & fascist politics. Alternative bands of the 1980’s & 1990’s brought real energy & taught kids about life, and that’s what holds up with every generation of kids. That’s why the Pixies shows sell out, with parents taking their EXCITED teenage kids, while hair metal draws only old folks.

The grunge movement happened when I was in dental school and as a fan of the music who had a year-and-a-half of guitar lessons I would think about these things in between my academic schedule and wonder what I was going to do with my life…

You get through difficult life situations with hard word & intelligent thinking. You have to stick to the process especially when difficulties & failures arise. That’s the ‘hard part’ many people don’t want to face. But if you have a good plan that is adaptable as needed, and you stick with the process, your situation will improve and then you can turn your ambitions into reality. That’s how grunge guitar broke through and why it remains relevant.

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The Steve Bartman incident: a baseball & social analysis

Preface: Every sports fans knows this event well enough and its run-up, so I’ll spare the reader a detailed account and skip to my analysis.

We’re nearing the 20th anniversary of this infamous sports incident, so let’s review how to avoid becoming a victim. 1) Know the ground rules on fan interference, especially if you have a front row seat. That’s a responsibility you have as a fan. 2) Stand up for your dignity at all times. Do NOT let yourself be abused for the sake of the team. 3) Give Fox Sports the middle finger when they keep focusing the camera on you after your fan mistake. I guarantee they will stop showing you on TV. 4) When the attention & scrutiny becomes too much, leave the stadium IMMEDIATELY. Don’t sit there and let fans hurl verbal abuse & beer on you. 5) Pick better friends. Evidentially, the two people to Steve Bartman’s right were with him, but never stuck up for him after the incident and completely abandoned him when they were escorted from their seats by security. 6) The next day, after you’ve been identified in the media, make a statement declaring your remorse for what you did, while also focusing the blame on the players & coaches in the field/dugout who failed. Make THEM own the responsibility for the Cubs losing, instead of absorbing the blame yourself. 7) Give the Marlins credit for a great rally. Just after the incident happened, Marlins LHP Mark Redman said to his team in the dugout, “Let’s make him famous.” They did. 8) If you’re gonna go for it (and I say don’t do it there!), then at least make the play. He missed badly, and that caught him more hell with Cubs fans. 9) Re-evaluate why you are a fan and what it means.

I’m one of those people who never hated Steve Bartman, or felt sorry for him. I felt like he needed to grow a pair. Recently re-watching the ESPN Film Catching Hell (2011) brought all these thoughts to me, and many of them weren’t mentioned in the documentary film. The film is a different experience now from when it was released, because the Cubs finally won it in 2016– thirteen years [!] after the Bartman incident.

In Catching Hell, there’s not enough awareness & discussion of Fox Sports singling out a spectator and making HIM the story, all in the name of bigger ratings. They kept going back & back to it, instead of focusing on the action on the field. Steve Lyons was a main culprit, and a good example of an ex-jock who isn’t qualified to be in a broadcast booth.

Furthermore, when Bill Buckner says he would violate baseball ground rules as a front row spectator if that situation came to him, I don’t believe him. I understand why he says it, but I don’t believe it, and neither should any baseball fan. Their experiences were completely different, and hard to compare, except that they were both made into scapegoats. ESPN has all the resources in the world available to them, and they still miss the story.

Catching Hell also had too much lame arguing that fan interference should have been called by the umpires. Two Cubs fans with too much time on their hands even made a 187-page legal brief on it, making their case for FI. Let me refute that weak stuff here. First, this was before video replay in umpiring, so the call on the field stands no matter what.

Second, at least half a dozen other Cubs fans were reaching into the field of play to catch the foul ball too. If hometown fans prevent their own player from making a play, and it’s too close to call on the field (as it was), then the umpires CAN’T bailout the Cubs. I’ve seen Yankees fans make way for Derek Jeter, etc, to make a play in the stands at Yankee Stadium. Same thing for fans at Fenway for their team, and of course they do the opposite when it’s an opponent going for the ball– and that’s their right as fans.

If Cubs fans weren’t ‘heads up’ like they should have been, then they deserve to suffer the consequences of their baseball ignorance. If fans turn a home field advantage into a disadvantage, then they only have themselves to blame– collectively. I believe Cubs fans hated Steve Bartman for two reasons: 1) his actions hurt their team’s cause; and 2) they know deep in their hearts they would have done the same.

Epilogue: After the Cubbies finally won the World Series in 2016, management & ownership did the right thing and sent Steve Bartman a World Series ring. By all accounts he was deeply moved & appreciative, while saying he didn’t deserve it. The truth is no one deserved it more. This guy who just wants to remain an anonymous Cubs fan took a bullet for the 2003 Cubs and was forced to endured shameful abuse from fellow fans & the entire media. No one deserves that.

The guy got too excited for a moment and did something he shouldn’t have done. No one died. This should have been the call, “Foul ball… out of play. Maybe some Cubs fans are a little too exuberant in their desire to catch a foul ball, as Alou is upset…” [replay, then live camera shot to the area– once. Then move on with the broadcast of the game].

Thom Brennaman’s call on Fox was similar to what I just wrote, but the producers in the truck kept pushing the cameras onto Steve Bartman, while color analyst Steve Lyons kept harping, “THAT could be BIG,” which gave Fox a compelling human narrative they could keep going back to, and they did. Steve Bartman should have sued Fox for malice. He may have, I don’t know, but he surely had a case. That’s why guys who looked like attorneys kept pushing their business cards in his face after his foul ball muff.

Being a sports fan is a dangerous thing, because it has the potential to become a drunken mob where things can get out of control. People are so passionate about sports that they lose their heads and do crazy thing they normally wouldn’t do. It’s the excitement of the game, the desire to participate and be a hero for 15 seconds, to be on TV, gambling & fantasy sports, etc. Some of that is vanity, or simply a natural desire to recognized for doing something good.

What the Steve Bartman incident teaches us is that if you get carried away with all this exuberance for sports in the form of fanaticism, it can come back to haunt you if you’re in the wrong place at the wrong time. Network TV cameras pick up EVERYTHING now. If you get caught in that situation, refer to my checklist at the top to avoid becoming a victim of circumstance.

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The sorry state of US soccer

Preface: Many nations didn’t even allow adult women to play soccer back in the 1990’s. Muslim nations in particular. The US was the only country that allowed a large pool of boys & girls to compete together at a youth level. That helped catapult the USWNT to soccer dominance which lasted for 30 years. This is a follow-up piece to USWNT out early at World Cup 2023: no one cares

The USWNT trained at the sprawling Markham Woods soccer complex (AKA: Lake Sylvan Shores) in north Orlando, throughout the 1990’s and at least into the early 2000’s. It has multiple fields, and the USWNT shared this space with all the youth league teams, including my (then) step-son’s summer teams from 1998-2000. When looking in their direction (as every cognizant soccer spectator did back then), I immediately noticed it was men coaching the USWNT.

My step-son was a good kid and enjoyed playing soccer, though he never had any scholarship or professional ambitions, which helped him fit-in well with all the coaches he played for. His mom made him choose soccer over football in high school on my advice.

He actually liked band better, and played trombone during the football games, so he was much happier for it. I often remarked to her in the bleachers, “The Mount Dora football team sucks, but their band kicks ass– best in conference!” She would laugh, and was proud of that.

His summer coach was a good-hearted father whose son was the center-midfielder. Everyone got along well, and the coach would often admonish his young players for being lazy & unserious by screaming, “Do you see Mia Hamm over there?! She’s won two World Cups & Olympic gold, and she STILL gets pissed at herself when she fucks up! So why are you laughing at your stupid shit when you’re on the same field as her?!!” That was really good stuff from a boys summer league coach– I liked him.

After the USMNT made the Round-of-16 in World Cup 1994, MLS was born. I saw early MLS exhibition games at Disney/ESPN’s Wide World of Sports complex which had opened recently in Buena Vista. We were given tickets from a cousin, the head secretary of WWOS— which is nice. They were sparse crowds, so we always had a good view. Up close, I instantly recognized Lexi Lalas, Tab Ramos, Eric Wynalda and the rest of these hippies & high-strung pretty boys by their “free spirited” west-coast playing style.

I saw it for real when I played my 1985-86 high school year in San Jose. These kids were talented for sure, and they had skills, but they were afraid to be really great, and that’s why they never won anything. I saw it over & over from the bench my junior year in San Jose. I finally had a great coach, and he knew I needed to catch up on skills before I could get serious playing time, but I was ambi-footed & serious about putting the ball in the net for my team.

I was excited to play for this coach my senior year, and was ready to dedicate my 1986 summer to getting better per his suggestions, but my family moved back to Wisconsin before the Cali soccer season ended and that was that. The level of talent & coaching in Oshkosh, WI wasn’t/isn’t anywhere close to Cali, so I only played summer league for a two more years, then gave soccer up for academics. Sports taught me a lot, including when to quit.

Sports also taught me that rich, spoiled Cali boys are the kind of teammates who always yell at you or try to show you up in front of everybody and never apologize for it. You would think a few of these hippies would understand karma or team philosophy, but no, they only care about themselves. They do whatever they want on the field, and waive off any criticism. THESE are the stars, and they are fixed– nothing can re-align that.

These enabled crybabies get where they are by politics, influence & money, more than actual talent. I’m not saying they were terrible, but I am saying they really weren’t that good, and most of it was for the cameras. The 1994 USMNT didn’t even have to qualify because the US was the host nation– for the first time ever. The time had finally come, and these pretty-boy brats simply had the right backing. That only gets you so far on the world stage, and the USMNT has never made it past a Round-of-16 in any World Cup. No one fears them.

Soccer was a winter sport in Cali when I played, as compared to a fall sport in the Midwest. Soccer is a winter sport in Florida too. I feel like soccer skills & basketball skills go together, and that young athletes should be allowed to play both. I think Bo Jackson would agree. California & Florida are where many of the best athletes come from, but forcing boys to choose in high school limits their ambidextrous skill development.

Basketball requires ambi-hand skills, while soccer is ambi-feet. If developed correctly, the ambi-skills reinforce each other, producing a formidable athlete. But in Cali, FL, and elsewhere in the deep South, where there is perhaps the most money for soccer, boys have to choose, as hoops & soccer are BOTH winter sports. Climate has something to do with this, so it’s a complicated regional sports issue, that seriously impacts the quality of the USMNT, and it goes unmentioned.

I saw a few high-school kids in Florida who tried to play soccer after fall football, but often they were too hurt from gridiron action. In some cases, it took most of the winter soccer season for them to recover. Just in time for spring football.

Football & soccer often share the same playing fields in high school, which is another factor in good ol’ boys insisting on staggering high school football & soccer, versus competing head-to-head with soccer for young boys talent. Football coaches get hysterical about their home fields during their season. They don’t want to share it with anyone. This is just some of the politics I’m talking about.

This needs to change for men’s soccer to improve. Otherwise, the US is giving up on men’s soccer. Soccer needs to compete with football for boys. NFL fans don’t want to hear that, and that’s the root of the problem. If soccer acquiesces to football, and insists on competing with basketball, then US men’s soccer will continue to stink.

The talent pool in soccer needs to be enlarged, and you can get that from parents who don’t want their boys playing football. Stuff like this never gets discussed when American fans ask, “How can the USMNT ever become competitive at the WC level?” It requires a revolution in thinking & in deed, because rotten politics controls every game. Politics controls the funding, the coaching, scholarships, grants, etc. They own the huge complexes. They have deals with the corporate media giants, with the Star-Spangled Banner waving behind them.

As this actors & writers strike continues, sports programming will become more coveted by networks looking for fresh content. Sports affects many levels of our thinking & actions. People LOVE sports, they want their children to play sports. It’s nearly a universal childhood dream to be a sports star of some type.

The hardest thing to do is get control of all these emotions that go into our passion for the game, and make rational objective decisions based on all the facts, to come to a conclusion of what’s the best course of action for the good of the game. That requires revolutionary leadership to start, and it’s finished when parents, fans & athletes come together everywhere to get rid of the filthy capitalist politics that are ruining ALL our sports.

Wrap-up: By the late 1990’s, most of the best soccer brains in the US went into helping the women’s national team, as they must have recognized by then that the USMNT was hopeless. These brains were mostly male, but there were more & more butch lesbians working their way up the coaching, political & media ranks. It has been an American feminist agenda to make US womens’ soccer entirely female at its highest levels. All these major phenomenons in womens’ soccer (positive & negative) happened exclusively, or at least most sharply, in the US.

Most soccer-crazy nations in Europe & Latin America viewed fútbol as entirely a mens’ game back in the 20th century. Now the big money is everywhere, so other nations have built better womens’ programs because they have better mens’ players to instruct them. This is why the USWNT is in so much trouble. They have neither the coaching, nor the skill required to beat the best on an equal playing field.

Globally, women’s soccer is now equal, in the sense that the US women don’t scare everyone anymore, Furthermore, they aren’t going to get better– they’ve peaked for the historical reasons I’ve outlined. The USWNT has milked it for as long as they could, but now it’s over, and they have no direction back to the top. You’re not allowed to even whisper that truth on ESPN.

You need more than talent to win at team sports. You need organization, a serious work ethic, and a spirit of community & sacrifice for the greater good. In soccer, if it’s not being taught at the elementary youth level, then it’s hopeless, because every other competitive nation is doing precisely that. You can never win when you’re always behind from the start.

It’s not difficult to find reasons why the USWNT won’t regain its past glory. The US team is no longer formidable, but beatable, and the whole world knows it, so they’re going to get everyone’s best shot from now on. It appears the USWNT is too proud to admit they aren’t the best anymore, which is a problem. So it’s a losing combination of 1) the opponents burning desire to beat those loudmouth American bitches, along with 2) hubris & denial on the US end.

I’ve got online friends from HS, college, and beyond who have raised boys & girls that play soccer. I’m sure they’ve read what I’ve posted with great interest, whether they agree with my conclusions, or not. My job as a sports blogger is to make readers think outside of the corporate box. Soccer parents have been led to believe that they are part of a great social progress, but are they?

Today’s young American boys & girls are behind on soccer skills because the coaching is so poor everywhere. None of these girls are the next Michelle Akers, or anything close. The US men never win. There’s too much mediocrity & politics at the youth & HS levels, and that’s a shame considering the ever-growing American interest in soccer over the past 25 years.

Furthermore, many of today’s professional athletes didn’t play in youth leagues or high school, like we did in the past. If you are recognized early as a prodigy, and your parents have the money, then you are sent to a sports academy, such as ING. Here, kids receive top-level, sports specific training– the best that money can buy. This gives these talented (& privileged) kids an unfair advantage at the collegiate & professional levels, because most kids have never seen that level of competition & skill in their sport.

This ‘youth talent drain’ into the private sector hurts broader youth development for the same reasons. Normal-level kids can’t improve if all the best players are at private institutions. Soccer, tennis, golf, even basketball are now dominated by this private sports academy model. It has created an unlevel playing field for athletic scholarships, etc, and stagnated overall development in every sport– to the benefit a privileged few.

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USWNT out early at World Cup 2023: no one cares

Is anyone going to miss these bitches? Megan Rapinoe misses a PK that would have won it (she didn’t even put it on-frame), and then she smiles & shrugs it off during the post-match presser. Is that a leader? Is that a role model? She’s too chicken-shit to put a GW PK on-frame [!], and then none of her teammates call her out for her shit. This USWNT totally mailed-it-in for World Cup 2023. This is so far from 1999, it’s pathetic.

This is what happens when a MeToo campaign takes over an institution. Megan Rapinoe is a LGBTQ+ activist, a pawn of the CIA Democrats. This 2023 USWNT had no soul, because their appointed ‘leader’ is soulless.

Her Subway ad campaign (which has been scrubbed from YouTube) goes down in marketing history as perhaps the most disastrous commercial blitz in TV/internet history. In 2021, loyal customers STOPPED going to Subway until corporate pulled all their Megan Rapinoe advertising spots, as they were killing local franchises EVERYWHERE. Subway needed Steph Curry again, and QUICK!

People just don’t like her, and it’s not because she’s a lesbian– it’s because she’s unappealing. She’s not nice, honest, or brilliant, and she’s certainly not pretty. It’s a universal male fantasy to turn a hot lesbian straight, but I (like many others) have no such desire towards her. I only mention that because it’s important to women. It’s a different standard when measuring women athletes. It doesn’t matter how many titles you have, if you are marketable, then you’re shit.

I was a soccer player in middle school & high school when the sport was in its infancy in the US. Boys & girls played together on summer league teams and in high school– on JV & varsity. I was a soccer step dad in the late 1990’s, and I remember our then-family watching the 1999 Women’s WC final, USA v China, live on ABC. It was maybe the most dramatic sports contest ever, with the US winning in PK’s.

Like many, many others, I still remember the players on that team because they are worth remembering. In 1999, a group of determined under-appreciated young women changed the sports world forever. This 2023 USWNT wasn’t a group of women coming together as a team for a greater good, but a bunch of self-serving bitches wearing the same-colored jersey. That’s why they lost.

I mention my personal history because that’s how girls soccer started in the 1980’s. Boys had to play with girls, and we had to play nice– even in high school. All the girls who stuck it out were better for playing with boys. It wasn’t easy (on all sides), for sure. Michelle Akers, Mia Hamm, etc, all had to deal with those circumstances. It pushed them, in a way girls can’t be pushed today, because there are now girls soccer leagues everywhere– as it should be. It’s all part of global sports progress.

Postscript: So where does the USWNT rank globally now? They finished 2nd in their Group, and lost in the Round of 16 in Australia 2023. That objectively means they are anywhere from 9th to 16th globally. The competitive edge the USWNT has had over their global opponents, starting from the inaugural women’s World Cup in 1991, has been completely eroded. What is the cause? Politics is always a factor in big money sports, and women’s soccer is clearly no exception. The wrong choices are being made for the wrong reasons, and this is what you get. I leave it to the experts analyze the details– that’s what they’re supposedly paid for.

No longer can the USWNT waltz onto the World Cup stage & dominate, or even win. They couldn’t even score this time around. Lack of skills, creativity, chemistry & poor player development are the reasons. Too many egos need to be massaged all the time, and that creates resentment for team players. This drains a team, and it’s almost always the reason a team loses, at any level. You might not expect this ugly pettiness from the USWNT, but then you would be giving them too much credit.

The resources the US sporting establishment has poured into girls/womens soccer since the 1990’s have helped keep the US women ahead of everyone else– through World Cup 2019 which they won. The USWNT had a huge head start by the process I described above in my personal experience. There were hundreds-of-thousands of other boys like me who played fair and (unknowingly) helped develop the original USWNT. I only mention this because I’ve never seen it written anywhere else, yet it surly had the impact I’ve described.

Now that it’s all-girls leagues, US soccer is going to struggle to recapture the glory of its early years. How are you going to make players better when it’s favoritism, enabling & cynical politics at every level? This is the reason why the men’s national team always sucks. I don’t ever see the USWNT team returning to prominence on a world stage. Other counties such as Sweden & China are far better organized at this point. The processes that have undermined the quality of women’s soccer run too deep in American society, and are also part of a global revolution to come.

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Marilyn Manson vs. the abusive MeToo campaign

Who anointed the MeToo campaign as the morality police, judge, jury & executioner? Whether you like Marilyn Manson or not isn’t the issue. The guy worked hard to make millions of fans, and his relationships with those people has been poisoned by cynical politics & a dirty-tricks campaign. I know fans of Marilyn Manson (men & women) who say his music helped them get through a tough period in their lives, etc. Who is MeToo to judge all this with absolute authority?

In the case of Marilyn Mansion & Ashley Morgan Smithline, it’s Evan Rachel Wood who is the abuser. Evan Rachel Wood is a perjurer who (among other criminal activities) submitted a fraudulent letter from the FBI as evidence under oath in court. Commenters online are now calling Evan Rachel Wood “Amber Heard 2.0”, which is accurate. Evan Rachel Wood has the full backing of the CIA Democrats as Marilyn Manson has been the victim of a coordinated MeToo-style hit job because he’s an easy target.

The MeToo campaign and its fanatic adherents have no compassion & understanding for a man’s career ruined with lies. Just as they have no compassion for women who are teaching in classrooms with COVID, or female healthcare workers, retail employees, etc.

The MeToo campaign supports the criminal US/NATO-led proxy war in the Ukraine against Russia, nevermind all the women & children who have become casualties. The MeToo campaign still supports sanctions on Syria, even after a series of devastating earthquakes hit the region. Women & children buried under rubble doesn’t register on the MeToo campaign’s radar.

MeToo doesn’t care one whit about women autoworkers who have been unfairly fired for reporting sexual harassment & wage theft to the UAW bureaucracy. When a woman working on the line in an Ohio auto plant had a miscarriage last year, because she was doing work she shouldn’t have been doing, the UAW helped deny her insurance claim. And so on, etc…

MeToo doesn’t care about working class women, it is only concerned with gaining privileges for a thin layer of women in the upper-middle class. That’s the focus of all the identity politics campaigns (Black Lives Matter, LGBTQ+, etc) which come directly from the CIA Democrats. This cynical attempt to divide workers & the poor only strengthens the hand of the far right.

Ashley Morgan Smithline has declared that Evan Rachel Wood manipulated & abused her. So why wouldn’t you believe her? MeToo (who claims women should ALWAYS be believed) is silent on this question.

The MeToo campaign, like capitalism, is exploitative & abusive to its core. The only way to end this nefarious, dirty-tricks MeToo campaign is by organized mass resistance to the capitalist system itself.

Music is such an important form of communication, perhaps the most influential as its primality touches & stirs our deepest emotions. The question of questions becomes: Who controls the music? Consider all music of the past in its historical materialist context, with a philosophical understanding of dialectics in revolution. These days, if the music doesn’t also stimulate the intellect, it’s crap.

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Manufacturing Music in 2022

Country music artist Miranda Lambert did it again with Palomino, which has plenty of crossover appeal. It’s my choice for the best mainstream album of 2022, in any genre. Conspicuously absent from most ‘2022 best-of’ lists, I’ve noticed.

Brian Eno & PJ Harvey are continually intriguing artists I follow. They endure & gracefully evolve by becoming multi-media artists. Thus they don’t fit so nicely on the limited ‘best-of’ lists published by most critics.

Beyonce, Megan Thee Stallion, Harry Styles, Wet Leg, BlackPink, etc, are production-heavy industry creations. These performers dominate most of the corporate media’s best-of-2022 music lists. These fans & boosters should credit the producers more, and realize what that means– particularly its limitations.

Mediocre & dull music is now precisely MIDI-ed, EQ-ed & compressed, which allows for better dynamics– yielding a cleaner & louder sound. Bass is boomier than ever, and distortion is crunchier in all ranges. Beats are mostly electronic, or at least enhanced by digital effects. That’s the sound of today, from pop & rap to punk & heavy metal. Much of this ‘excitement’ is achieved by computerized digital processing. It’s the same process in film, television & crypto.

Hillary Clinton w/ Pussy Riot_2014

The nefarious #MeToo campaign bears much of the current responsibility for this lack of excitement & innovation in popular culture. Many talented performers (in all fields) have been cancelled by a Democratic Party-led identity politics campaign in its feminist (Me Too), racialist (Black Lives Matter), and LGBTQ-activist incarnations. All are corporate funded, anti-science & pro-war. The “punk” spearhead for this CIA campaign has been Pussy Riot (pic above), who have been hyped in the Western media as a “protest art collective,” while being officially designated as foreign agents by the Russian government.

The list of performers who have been cancelled in music, as well as film, television & theater is staggering in terms of top talent, and irreplaceable in terms of art. You simply can’t replace a Kevin Spacey, Dustin Hoffman, or Bill Murray in film. In music, you can’t replace a Michael Jackson, Ryan Adams, or Roger Waters. If they can be attacked and taken down by cynical politics, resting on a mountain of lies & baseless allegations, then who is safe from this?

It’s nearly impossible to be an artist under these conditions. The industry hype machine allows nothing subversive (left-wing) to enter into popular consciousness. In fact, they censor it harshly. We are nearing the end of the ‘American Idol era’ in popular music, when a handful of industry big-shots & gatekeepers were allowed to control everything the public saw & heard– on the radio, television & online.

In 2022, most music fans are bored with Justin Bieber, Brittany Spears, Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift, Adele, etc. No one expects any of them to age well. There’s not enough talent there. None of them come close to matching Prince, Madonna, Gloria Estefan, Chuck D, or Tupac in their primes. Anyone inspired by that is driven underground these days. I believe the best music of 2022, in every any genre, was underground. This means most people, myself included, never heard it.

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Fractured Fairy Tales: The Democratic Party

Once upon a time a real novelist wrote 1984, giving humanity an Orwellian view of post-WW2 politics. By the time 1984 arrived in our Gregorian calendar, the Democratic Party had completely collapsed, with Mondale/Ferraro winning only 13 electoral votes (Minnesota & DC); to 525 for Republican incumbents Reagan/Bush. No one ever mentioned Walter Mondale or Geraldine Ferraro again.

In 1980, Democratic incumbent President Jimmy Carter was routed by Ronald Reagan & George H.W. Bush, sweeping anti-working class conservatism into the 1980’s. Ronald Reagan began as a Hollywood B-movie actor (mostly westerns), who is clichéd & tiresome in every performance– and there were far too many. No one watches his movies anymore, and very few ever did in the first place.

Anti-communism was Democratic President Harry Truman’s post-war doctrine, a pivot from FDR’s alliance with the Soviet Union. Containment became rollback, and Ronald Reagan & John Wayne were the Hollywood faces of this ideology. Actors suspected of socialism were blacklisted by Hollywood & the music industry in NY, LA & Nashville. If you wanted back in, you had to go to both their mansions and kiss their rings while pleading for mercy. It wasn’t pretty for those who did. Many talented blacklisted actors left Hollywood, or committed suicide. It was an ideological war back then, and it remains that way today. Inane performers write silly songs longing for these good old days to return…

In the 1980’s, Paul Voelker and the Federal Reserve were in step with Reagan/Bush, jacking up interest rates to 20% and bankrupting huge swathes of American industry. They were “fighting inflation” they claimed. Farmers lost their farms, auto plants shut down in Detroit/Flint, steel manufacturing left Pittsburgh & the Ohio valley, etc. This was a capitalist era of de-industrialization by exploiting modern globalization to pit one nations’ work force against another in a race to the bottom in terms of wages & working conditions.

By the 1980’s, China’s super-cheap & ultra-exploited work force in capitalist-allowed zones produced record profits for auto manufacturers, electronics, the fashion industry, etc. For example, a small shoe company Nike, became an industry giant and made a fortune off the toils of Chinese workers when Air Jordan took off.

Capitalist rule was consolidated during & after the Tiananmen Square massacre in 1989. Chinese workers were (still are) organized under a brutal Maoist bureaucracy (mirroring Stalinism) which super-exploits the vast majority who must work. The corporate mantra is: US workers need to catch up to the Chinese to be more ‘competitive’. Jeff Bezos & Elon Musk have been working on this, and are hailed as entrepreneurs & visionaries in the fake press.

Reagan/Bush triumphing in November 1980, mirrored Margret Thatcher becoming the UK Prime Minister in May 1979. In this era of modern globalization, where technology had advanced to the point where computers were beginning to become mainstream, global production & distribution made a qualitative leap. By the mid-1980’s, computers were being introduced in schools, universities, public libraries, etc. This replaced typewriters, card catalogs, cash registers, paper appointment books, etc.

The modem was being introduced, meaning a user had to attach a touch-tone phone’s receiver & microphone ends to suction cups in order to send & receive data. It was slow & unreliable. A few years later, Microsoft’s Windows95, AOL, and the Mac came into existence. The information superhighway & Napster succumbed to iTunes, MySpace & Fakebook. It all started with Pong, Star Wars & Space Invaders.

China’s ruling bureaucracy reunited with capitalism when Richard Nixon formally recognized them as a nation at the UN. Before this, the official US policy on China since 1949 had been that China didn’t exist. This denial of the elephant in the room was part of the ruling establishment’s virulent anti-communist campaign.

In popular music, the Weavers were blacklisted because Pete Seeger was a socialist. Red Scare anti-communist campaigns, red-baiting of anti-war protesters, blacklisting artists, HUAC, etc, were tenets of good government in Washington, New York, Hollywood & Langley back in the day. Nothing’s really changed with those institutions, who maintain their 20th-century backwardness into the 21st century. Today, American politics is a two-sided bitcoin with Democrats/Republicans. When they flip it in cyberspace, it’s heads they win, tails you lose.

Richard Nixon’s China recognition strategy outflanked the liberal hippies, and got him easily re-elected in 1972. It should be noted that this is when the DSA came into modern existence, organizing around Michael Harrington, a supporter of US imperialism. Despite all the so-called ‘left-wing’ hype, populist Democrat George McGovern never had a chance– Electoral College results: Nixon 520, McGovern 17 (Massachusetts & DC). For the record, Rolling Stone magazine was all-in on the McGovern 1972 campaign. In fact, it established the publication as a major cultural & political influencer, a status it maintains up to the present.

In 1972, Hunter Thompson wrote whacked-out essays for Rolling Stone that were presented as “Gonzo counter-culture” in the mainstream. DSA supporters would pontificate on them from the fake left. Jan Wenner, Dave Marsh, Robert Fricke, etc, never had talent, but they became rock stars in their own minds. In reality they were/are misinformation influencers. Rolling Stone magazine is still a major industry player, even though no one reads it anymore. They control the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, by deciding who gets in, and when. Once your act has that union card, it’s cha-ching when you tour. Every music act covets that.

Rolling Stone magazine’s coverage of the George McGovern presidential campaign influenced a generation of writers, actors, musicians, etc, in the same way William Burroughs, Henry Miller, Jack Kerouac, etc, influenced the beatnik/psychedelic generation before them. Rolling Stone was the first monthly publication dedicated to recognizing artistry in popular rock music & such, and in that sense it was progressive. It had sexy images, and it’s critical reviews were (are?) considered classic rock gospel. To dispute them critically & publicly is considered heresy within the industry.

Music & television became forever degraded when American Idol (2002-2016) became the industry Death Star. This is American entertainment after the stolen election of 2000, and post-9/11– the era of ‘war on terror’ propaganda. The Masked Singer is perhaps the nadir culmination of all this. Oh look– it’s Sarah Palin… it’s Rudy Giuliani… it’s Adolph Hitler! Who knew they could be so foppish & lovable in costume?

If Simon Cowell disapproves, you’re out forever. That is the modern incarnation of a music industry gatekeeper. Industry power players must look good on TV. This is where the mafia goombas who control the music business need pretty faces & squeaky-clean front men. It’s kinda been like ever since MTV came along.

To illustrate how censorship works in the online age, “Atheist Psalm” is now labeled ‘explicit’ by all the streaming services even though there are no swears in it. It used to be one swear got you banned, then they relaxed that so the Steve Miller Band’s “Jet Airliner” can be played on classic rock radio without having to be patched with funky kicks. Now you’re allowed a swear or two, if it isn’t too explicit [?!]. Multiple swears are explicit. Got that? It’s “Pay To Play” it’s always been that way, so “Obvious.” Indie artists can’t compete in the capitalist market with the industry’s “Millennial Whoop” machine.

Getting back to our political fairy tale, those in Generation X have been bombarded all their lives with state propaganda which declares the Democratic Party is progressive in its liberalism and pro-worker in its unionism. In turn, there is nothing to the political left of the Greens & DSA. Of course, the trade unions from the AFL-CIO, to the UAW, Teamsters, AFT, etc, are entirely staffed with corporate-oriented bureaucrats, backed by organized crime, and infiltrated by agents of the state, who sell out the rank-and-file. This enforced arrangement ensures those who faithfully pay their dues every paycheck always get fucked.

In this information age, where the internet can change everything in a hurry, the ruling classes of all nations, and the US most acutely, are preparing for all-out war on their working populations. Police and paramilitary groups such as the MAGA’s who stormed the Capitol building on January 6, 2021 are Nazi shock troops charged with terrorizing workers and keeping them in line. The Coronavirus War has raised fascism as the bourgeois political order of the day to be carried out. The rest is just hot air and only adds to global warming, misinformation & the criminal conspiracy against the international working class & youth.

Perhaps the biggest myth is to promote the Democrats in November as the only practical political solution to oppose fascism. The Democrats have been funding & supporting MAGA Republicans in their primaries, calculating they’ll be easier to defeat in November. This strategy of betraying the will (& donations) of ordinary Democrat voters, to give a microphone & platform to right-wing filth, is contemptible. That is their response to the Supreme Court overturning Roe v Wade. No consideration is given to promoting left-wing policies within the Democratic Party. That is a fiction Joe Biden is having a difficult time maintaining.

For instance, a wildcat railroad workers strike could really mess up the Democrats in the midterms. Democrats funding pro-Trump candidates in Republican primaries is a warning to workers– don’t trust the Democrats! Workers must be vigilant and organize rank-and-file committees to take control of their workplaces. Once the Democrats lose the illusion of union control, all they have for a political base are a bunch of useless upper-middle class philistines & bureaucrats. A wildcat railroad strike could kill the Democrats and they know it. That would end their fairy tale.

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