Friday, September 02, 2005

More liberal ranting:

"An unmitigated, total fucking disaster." It seems that Mike Brown, the current head of FEMA was essentially fired from his last job for gross incompetence.

I predict that the slow, lackluster Federal response to the crisis will be blamed on him, by the administration, and that Mike Brown will be the eventual sacrificial goat, if the national outrage over the unsatisfactory job done by FEMA rises above a certain threshold. If the general public isn't outraged enough, then Mr. Brown will get a pat on the back and a raise.

The mayor of New Orleans, Ray Nagin, had some choice words for the administration (scroll down and listen to the "I need more troops, man" link.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Holy crapazoid. Rebirth is now free. Which is totally cool. If you want to just dabble in playing around with making techno noises, this is one cool program to download.

Begin rant mode:

In other news, our government is apparently incompetent and/or not doing its job. If I, a mere layman, could have told you what a crapfest was going to result from Katrina, why couldn't the people we pay to pay attention to this type of shit? We knew that the position of New Orleans was perilous at best (back in 2001 at least).

Where is the federal command and control? Why is FEMA so incompetent? Why aren't there THOUSANDS of troops on the ground right now? What the fuck is going on in this country? I'm not talking about the National Guard, a large number of whom are in Iraq, but I'm talking about the Army. This was not unforseen at all, no matter what Bush says. Anyone with half a brain could figure out that a city below sea level right by the sea, if hit by a large hurricane, could flood. Why was funding removed or not given to the Army Corps of Engineers, for arguably necessary public safety infrastructure? What else is the purpose of government, other than public safety? If government cannot or will not provide public safety, haven't they abdicated their right to lead?

For that matter, why can't we open up all the closed military bases as refugee camps, instead of sending people to quickly overcrowded SPORTS FACILITIES, for god's sake?

As a country, we seem to be really dropping the ball here. There seems to be no one in command, no one taking charge of the situation. And that makes me sad. I can't stand seeing the talking heads from the government (I'm looking right at the FEMA spokesmen, mostly) congratulating themselves for all that they're doing, (or arguing that we shouldn't be 'playing the blame game,' when there CLEARLY is an awful lot of blame to go around) while people are dying, being raped, or worse. People are not 'frustrated' in New Orleans. They are dying. Dying.

I'm going to give blood on Saturday with some friends. It's the only thing I really know to do to help from here. And my wife and I gave some money (after seeing the telethon on 40/29) to the Red Cross. I'd encourage everyone to do the same, or something similar. If the politicians won't fix this situation, then I guess it's up to volunteers and such organizations. And individuals.

Rant mode off.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

I was going to hang out with Allen tonight and make some crazy noise, but my kitty, Molly, is sick. So I'm watching her. I came home from work and she was obviously feeling bad. Listless. She had gunk coming from her eyes. I think she has a cold. So, anyway, I'm watching the kitty. She's doing an awful lot of sleeping. And she was thoroughly uninterested in food.

Need to laugh? Go look at some basic electronics symbols.

Monday, August 29, 2005

When I was in high school, I became fairly obsessed with the Dune novels by Frank Herbert. I loved how philosophical they were, and how the story, while enthralling, was about more than simply plot. It was about subtle ideas about society, religion, power and the nature of humanity.

Anyway, there was an amazing book about Frank Herbert in the Jacksonville High School library, titled simply "Frank Herbert." It's out of print now, but the author has an online version here. It's well worth reading if you liked the series.

So, my copy of the new book Circuit-Bending, by Reed Ghazala, finally came in. It is quite interesting and informative. I can't wait until it's a little cooler outside, so that I can spend some evenings in the garage making some alien sound generators for odd but lovely sound and light installations.

Oh yeah, and if you're a local artist in the Northwest Arkansas area, go check out Art Amiss. They put on an event every once in a while. The next time they do one, I'm going to try to talk them into letting me display some of my crazy electronics.

Oh yeah, and via Clunk's site, I found the Lunch Tour!, a site of some locals who post reviews of local lunch spots. Seems to be kind of funny, yet informative.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

So, yesterday my friend Clint called from L.A., on his cell phone, from some kind of street fair. Knowing that I love wierd sound stuff, he made me listen to what this mad genius was doing. This guy had put microphones on his bike, and then run the microphones through guitar effects pedals, apparently some sort of modulation pedal, and then at least one delay pedals, maybe two. I think one of those pedals is a circuit-bent delay pedal. He then beat and 'played' his bike through the effects. It sounded crazy. Very very crazy.

Anyway, if anyone knows who this is and if he has a website, please let me know. This is so cool.