Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Trying to come up with a review for Stevie Wonder's latest

Let me say that where I am is trying to figure out if there's a review in me for the new Stevie Wonder album. I really want to review it. The first few listens, I didn't feel there was much to comment on. But I've been playing it a lot lately and I think there may be a review in it.

That means I've gone from apathetic on it, to feeling really good about the CD. I didn't review Fiona Apple's. I don't know there. It's interesting but I made the mistake of reading reviews on that and everyone was praising "Sailor" which sounds like stuff on previous albums. It kind of burned me on the album.

But I want to note two things. First, Cedric called me and Rosa Parks' death hasn't garnered the attention it should. Rosa Parks is a pioneer and an American hero (something we're in short supply of today.)

From Democracy Now!'s "Rosa Parks 1913-2005: We Air A Rare 1956 Interview With Parks During the Montgomery Bus Boycott:"

Rosa Parks: From the time of the arrest on Thursday night, and Friday and Saturday and Sunday, the word had gotten around over Montgomery of my arrest because of this incident. There were telephone calls from those who knew about it to others. The ministers were very much interested in it, and we had our meetings in the churches. And being the minority, we felt that nothing could be gained by violence or threats or belligerent attitude. We believed that more could be accomplished through the nonviolent passive resistance, and people just began to decide that they wouldn't ride the bus on the day of my trial, which was on Monday, December 5.
And Monday morning, when the buses were out on the regular run, they remained empty. People were walking or getting rides in cars with people who would pick them up, as best they could. On Monday night, the mass meeting at the Hope Street Baptist Church had been called. And there were many thousand people there. They kept coming, and some people never did get in the church, there was so many.
I was not the only person who had been mistreated and humiliated. I have been refused entrance on the buses because I would not pay my fare at the front and go around to the rear door to enter. That was the custom if the bus was crowded up to the point where the white passengers would start occupying. I hadn't thought that I would be the person to do this. It hadn't occurred to me. Others had gone through the same experience, some even worse experience than mine, and they all felt that the time had come, that they should decide that we would have to stop supporting the bus company until we were given better service. And the first day of remaining off the bus had been so successful. It was organized, in that we wouldn't ride the bus until our request had been granted.

A legend, a pioneer, an activist and a hero has died. Take time to remember her contributions.

The second thing is the news review from The Third Estate Sunday Review:

C.I.: Thank you for that, Wally. We now go to Kat who's devoting her music news segment to one issue which she'll provide commentary on. Kat of Kat's Corner (of The Common Ills).
Kat: I asked ahead of time for three minutes to sound off on Rolling Stone's latest cover story. Cover boy Bono, of U2. Bono has seen Bully Boy's heart and it is pure. How else to explain the denial in which Bono lives in even when confronted throughout the interview by Rolling Stone publisher Jann S. Wenner? Wenner points out that Bully Boy's $5 billion in AIDS funding was reduced by Bully Boy to $3 billion and then by Congress to $1.75 billion but Bono can't question his Bully Boy. As Bono plays Eva Braun, Wenner brings the topic back to the promised $5 billion Bono, drones like a Stepford Wife, "The money is still promised. . ." and Wenner cuts him off with, "He makes a lot of promises he doesn't keep." Bono's response? "The money is still promised . . . That money will come through." Bono justifies the funds going to ABC programs, abstinence, be faithful and conodms, saying that it "is pretty much accepted by most religious groups" in this country as if that has anything to do with scientific effectiveness. We're talking about some countries that were already deeply hostile to what they see as a disease that the west has lied about. Various theories abound. After years of stressing condoms, we're now going to go back and say, "Hey, let's also practice abstinence and be faithful"? It's crazy and it's a diversion of funds to what does work. Bono's so far up Bully Boy's ass, he can't see any light. Wenner challenges Bono on why he publicly shamed the Prime Minister of Canada for not living up to his pledge but has failed to do the same with Bully Boy. Bono's defense? "We're not shrinking violets here." On the war, Bono offers that "everyone knows" how he feels about the war. "Do I campaign against the war in Iraq? No. . . . That's the compromise." It's too bad that when choosing subjects to stay silent on, praise for Jesse Helms isn't one of them. Yes, Bono again praises Jesse Helms. Bono has left the planet earth many times. When he was "The Fly" he was living in a land that common sense could not gain entry to. But he's never embarrassed himself, or sold himself out, as much as he does in this interview where he continually presents himself as being slightly to the right of Hillary Clinton. As the displeasure the band has with him continues to become more and more well known, it's obvious why. His talk of "half-a-loaf" is ignorant and uninformed. An illness demands a scientific response, not a feel good lecture. When a saner president is in office in the United States and we revert back to treat a medical illness from a scientific point of view, we'll have to spend months undoing the damage that ABC has already caused. As the deaths continue to mount, one wonders if Bono will look at them and say "Well that's half a loaf! Let's talk about me again! Let's talk about how I won over right wingers and evangicals by meeting with them! It's all about me!" The compromised, self-stifiling, self-deluded Bono.
C.I.: Thank you for that, Kat. As always we also thank Dallas for hunting down links and Jess' parents for help with research. Keeping everything running smoothly throughout are Jim and Dona of The Third Estate Sunday Review. Thank you both.

One more thing. Wally, you're certifiable. You're a great grandson to drive into a hurricane, but you're certifable. The thing is, you'd do that for anyone, family or friend. I'm just glad you're safe and your grandfather is too. I do wonder if, as a nation, we're growing jaded or immune to hurricanes after the destruction of Katrina. If anyone reading this is a friend of Wally's (I consider Wally a friend), realize how lucky you are because this young man would drive through a hurricane for you too. Hope the power's on soon if it's not already. (And if there are non Common Ills people reading this, Wally lives in Florida, in a safe part of it, but his grandfather refused to leave his home so Wally drove not away from the hurricane, but towards it to be with his grandfather.)